Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Easy to Love, Hard to Raise

I found a blog the other day with this title. This is how I feel about S. She's such a sweet person. Everybody loves her. She has such an outgoing and friendly personality. She's a giver, a pleaser, and encourager, an "all about you" kind of person. She's scattered alot of the time, but it's wrapped in such an overwhelming amount of nice, it's kind of innocently cute. At home, she's like that alot too. Other times are just "over the top" - the scatteredness during school or the emotional drama (good and bad) - and those times wipe us all out emotionally (and physically when she was younger.) Nobody outside the family understands much...it's like the problems are invisible unless you have a pair of "family glasses."

Monday, January 9, 2012

Check the Gate

Well, apparently the filming went well. She was happy with all her "B roll" shots (whatever that means...) and with the interviews. She even used a remote control to film herself in front of the courthouse.

Panic insued after each stop though..."Oh no! I forgot to check the gate!" What does that mean? "Just film talk mom..." So, I Googled it...

When a particular camera angle has been shot, the First Assistant Camera Operator, removes the lens from the front of the camera, opens the aperture so that he can see all the way to where the film is exposed. He checks for debris, dust, hair, sand, ect. If there is a particle in the gate, then everything since the last gate check is potentially compromised and it is assumed it cannot be used. The takes will then have to be repeated.

Hmmm....hard to do on a standard digital video camera, but it sounds cool.

The first gentleman she interviewed found me in my car after they finished and complimented her (and me) on what a wonderful young lady she was and how impressed he was with how prepared she was for the interview. Yay!

Now, let's see what comes out of this. Project is due on the 20th...

Thursday, January 5, 2012

The Big Meanie

So the career of choice for S right now is a movie director. In the fall, a movie company was in our small town shooting a major motion picture and we passed by many times over several months. That picqued her interest. She started reading everything she could get her hands on about movie production and decided she wanted to write a complete screenplay and film a (IMO) pretty high budget movie. She could see it all in her head, and I'm sure it was incredible. Sometimes, as the mom, it's hard to be supportive and realistic at the same time. Where will you get the costumes? The lights? The camera? The ACTORS? When I pose these questions I sound like a big meanie crushing my babies big dreams of an Academy Award at age 14.

Before Christmas, S found a video contest she wanted to enter. It is a great project - much more manageable than the full length feature film she had planned - a short 8-10 minute video on the Constitution or an amendment with a local emphasis. She's so good at seeing the big picture and had some great ideas, but rough around the edges when it comes to details like scheduling interviews and having a list of questions. I wasn't really enthusiastic about the whole project because unfortunately, all I could think about was the inevitable hyperfocus as soon as I agreed and the resulting panic and drama when something didn't go exactly as she had planned.

After whining to my mom, she suggested I let her do this one completely on her own. Whew! Me, a control freak with a ADHD daughter, letting go?!? OK - if you insist. What did I have to lose? I told S that I would agree to her making the film, but it was "ALL HER." I didn't want to hear drama or panic. I was not going to hold her hand with scheduling or the interviews or filming. Enter first panic: "But how am I going to drive around to do the filming?!?!" Good point, but panic is not needed. I agreed to spend one full afternoon driving her around town to interviews and other filming locations. Enter second panic: "But what if someone can't interview that day?!?!" My response, "deal with it." So that's why I'm the big meanie.

So far, she has dealt with it and I have been very impressed. She chose to focus on the 2nd Amendment and set up several interviews before we left for vacation. She has a plan! A museum, a gun range, interviews with a 2nd Amendment expert and and attorney. We are headed out today and she even has our whole route printed off from Mapquest. Hallejuah!!! A major breakthrough!!!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Mom Graded It Wrong!

Math is a struggle for S. Currently, we are working through the Key To Algebra Series. Today, when I checked her work she had missed nearly every problem. I am weary from grading, redoing, regrading, redoing, regrading...

Today was going to be dad's day. When he got home from work, I explained that he was going to have to help with her math. (Thankfully, engineers love that. :-) ) I showed him that most of the mistakes were careless errors, and that it seemed she really understood the concepts. I wanted him to make a point to tell her that in math, attention to detail is especially important. His first question to her was, "Why do you think you got all these wrong?" Her reply, "Mom graded it wrong!"


We were on vacation in Florida last week with 30+ members of our extended family. All the kids get along great and are always busy, busy, busy when they are together.

Later in the week, we had the opportunity to go on a deep sea fishing trip in the Gulf of Mexico. While the weather was warm and sunny, the trip out and back would be cold. The night before, I told the girls they would need to dress in "layers" in the morning. Now, this is not the first time I have used that word to describe how to dress. We snow ski several times a year and layering is essential. However, S could NOT understand what I was trying to say and the downward spiral started.

I explain to he she needs a t-shirt on first, then a long sleeve, then a light jacket then I would find her a heavier coat to put on the top. She also needed to find her hat that Aunt C had given her the night before because that would cover her ears. All I can say is "too much information at once." Arms were flailing, she was muttering to herself, "I have so much to do!", feet were stomping through the house. Finally, I had to have her 6 year old cousin help her. Sigh.

I wonder if we had been going skiing if there would have been a problem. Being in warm Florida didn't really jive with the layering idea even though I told her it was going to be COLD on the boat going out and coming back.

Looking back, there are a few things I could have done that may have helped.

1. Write it down. A list might have been helpful for her at this task. Maybe a list needs to be my "go to" intervention for awhile since her working memory and processing speed seem to cause frustration.

2. Getting her started earlier. I waited until right before bedtime to give instructions. Being in a house with a dozen people trying to get packed and ready for bed created alot of opportunity for distraction.

3. Using the example of skiing and explaining that even though it was warm at the moment, a cold front was expected and it's often cooler on the water anyway.

In the end, she got it all together and we caught over 300 pounds of fish!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


It's been over a year since I've posted to this blog. Unfortunately, I'm a perfectionist and want everything I write to be perfect. The perfect words, the perfect layout, the perfect topic. As I was talking to my mom last night, telling her about our day, she suggested that I journal. The more I thought about it, the more I realized how comforting it is to know when others are having the same struggles as me, and that realization usually comes from reading candid blogs - and an ongoing e-mail conversation with a now dear friend who totally understands me even though we've never met or even spoken on the phone.

There is alot "out there" about ADHD, teens, and homeschooling high school, but very little when you search for a combination of the three topics. So, as I struggle to find others who are homeschooling their ADHD teens through high school, I've decided to dust off this old blog, throw my perfectionism to the wind, and let you have a glimpse into our life - the good and the bad.

As all bloggers know, comments are the key to motivation. If I know someone is out there reading, it gives me extra incentive to write regularly. So if you are reading, please take the time every now and then to let me know you are out there!


Monday, December 6, 2010


It's tough living with a child with ADHD. Knowing that she can't help alot of the things she does has helped me have more patience with her. We now have a "get ready" chore chart to help her remember to do things like brush her teeth and use deodorant - something I never in a million years would have though at 13 year old girl would need to be reminded of. If I do ask her to do something, I now remind her or check up later with a little more patience than I did in the past. If she wants to tell me a seemingly endless story about an unimportant (to me) topic, I do my best to stop and listen for a few minutes. I can tell that being more patient with her has helped reduce the number of conflicts we have. I'm not a patient person, so it's been hard and I haven't been perfect, but I'm thankful for baby steps.