Speechie Moments

Once I was working with a little boy and had the most hilarious exchange. I jotted down everything he said after, and I just found this and thought I’d share.
“You know, you should do something about your arms.”
“What do you mean?”
“You’re pretty and nice but your arms…are so hairy.”
(I couldn’t say anything because I was cracking up)
“If you leave them like that…nobody will want…to catch you…like to get married.”
“I am married.”
“You are????”
“Yep.”
“Ew.”

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Greetings and Salutations

I laugh when people think of my title as an intellectual or fancy way of saying hello. I got that line from Charlotte’s Web (still love that book.)  What was your favourite book as a child? Mine was Morris the Moose Goes to School.  Clearly I have always been a bit of a bookworm, and it is something that I am trying to encourage in my children.

Thankfully it is working, they love to be read to and to be read to.  I admit my little speechie heart beats a little faster when my Cielo asks if we can “practice my sounds.”  She just loves the Jolly Phonics program she is learning in Kindergarten.

Yesterday I had a great day, actually I had so much good fortune I probably should have bought a lottery ticket.  I started off my day with a meeting with my Education Director at work.  That went well and I was off to print copies of all the assessments I have done so far this year for filing in central office.  I stopped at the IT department to inquire if I could have my (crappy old) laptop connected to the wireless printer.  He tried but apparently my computer had no CD rom drive and other assorted “ailments.” This came as no surprise to me as often it takes multiple attempts to even turn on; sometimes I even get a “NO OPERATING SYSTEM DETECTED” error message (that can’t be good.)  My Ed Dir came to give me a copy of the agenda for Friday…they started talking about my laptop and I ended up leaving the room with a brand new work laptop.  It is not mine to keep, but as a contracted employee I do not usually get employee perks so I was tickled. (Lucky thing #1)

Then I went for lunch with a group of area SLPs.  None of us have many colleagues so we have taken it upon ourselves to network independently.  It was great fun and I enjoyed telling them about twitter.  They thought I knew a lot of people online, and I guess I do. (Good thing #2)

I finished up at work and then grabbed myself a Tim Horton’s.  Last stop of the day was for gas at a First Nations gas station (tax free fuel.) When I arrived home my husband had a delicious mexican meal all ready for us. (Lucky thing #3)

Later on in the evening I got the news that we may be getting a Christmas Bonus from the rez this year. (Fortunate thing #4)  Later on my dad arrived with some early Christmas gifts. (Sweet thing #5)

Much later I got a phone call from the gas station.  I won their nightly Christmas draw and won a $100 gift certificate for their store! Hello? Free gas? Holla!! (awesome thing #6)

TOTALLY PUMPED FOR TODAY! Bring it universe!

It’s a Good Day to Dance

When asked what interests, motivates and inspires me besides Speech Pathology several things run through my mind:

1)      Shopping (certainly)

2)      Food (definitely)

3)      Social media (most assuredly)

However, my strongest and most important interests and sources of motivation and inspiration are best described by my twitter handle @ndnspeechmomNdn is an abbreviation of the term “Indian” which, although not politically correct is the term I grew up using to describe myself as a First Nations individual.  Speech seems self-explanatory and mom is the title I wear most proudly. 

The importance of family and cultural identity is the cornerstone of my life and is something that I plan to pass on to my children.  As a child I danced Pow Wow and was even once Thunderchild Junior Princess in 1986.  (If you’d like to see my beaded moosehide sash my dad has it in his man cave.)  It is difficult to describe the feeling you get when you dance to the drum.  It has been years since I was part of the Pow Wow circle but whenever I hear the drum and the singers start those familiar songs I can feel it in my heart.  Someday I want to dance again, but I especially want to raise my children to be comfortable traveling on the Pow Wow trail.  I was so proud on August 28, 2011 at the Thunderchild Pow Wow because that was the first day I got to take all three children into the center while they danced Tiny Tots.  My nervousness as to whether they would like it melted away when I saw my daughter lift her arms and begin to dance.  I was surprised because I didn’t even know that she knew any steps.  My sons were more reserved but they didn’t panic even with the crowds watching them.   I was so excited I forgot to take as many pictures as I would have liked. 

This compilation video includes pictures from the Thunderchild 2011 Pow Wow and several from my family photo album.  The music is a song called, “It’s a Good Day to Dance” by the drum group Blackstone. 

 

This is a video that I shot with my phone of the drum group that sat directly in front of us.  I was proud that my children enjoyed listening to the drum so close.  The two men visible onscreen are my cousin Marvin Thunderchild and my uncle Eric Tootoosis.  The name of the drum group is Saddleback and I believe they are from the Edmonton area of Alberta.

I feel as though my focus on family and culture serves me well in my professional life as well since I am a school based Speech Pathologist travelling to several different First Nations communities.  I find it rewarding to work with children in the communities around my home reserve of Thunderchild and I hope that I can encourage more First Nations  people to enter the fields of Speech Pathology and Audiology.   I encourage everyone reading this to partake in the beauty that is native culture and to feel the heartbeat of the drum.  It is always indeed “A Good Day to Dance.”

I wish I had an SLPeep Batsignal…Or a Million Dollars

Yesterday was iPad 2 day in the States and I found myself enjoying the vicarious excitement as my friends got in line to purchase their new toys.  Perhaps I should rephrase that as all the friends I speak of are planning to use their iPad 2 for work.  Specifically they plan to use them as a reinforcing, exciting new way to conduct speech and language therapy.  I’m totally jealous because I have been wanting one since the original came out…and now this one has a camera.  I covet it. It will be mine, oh yes it will be mine.

Then I remember that I will probably need a new laptop before long, and that I need for work also (to write reports, progress notes, twitter, etc.)  What to do, what a conundrum.  My husband has been encouraging  me to get one for myself and reminds me that if I gain familiarity with one I will better be able to endorse it to the tribal councils I contract with to purchase them for the schools I serve.  (Plus they are so pretty and shiny.)  I am super tempted, especially since Nehemias is totally on Team  iPad 2.

Opinions welcome:

I also am totally in love with my Blackberry Torch, to the point that using non-touchscreens is painful.  Is the next step iPad 2? Damn you Bless you Steve Jobs!

Oh my god you guys

Things are going quite well, Diego will be three months on Friday and Junior will be 3 on Wednesday. THREE. Wow, I can’t believe how quickly time flies when you are sleep deprived.  Diego is sleeping a lot better and work is going well.  My back up plan of becoming an heiress still has not come to fruition.

OH!! I got a Blackberry Torch…it is SO SEXY y’all. *chickychickybowwow*

Back to my little (big) man

I was going to use the other picture when he was baring his teeth

That picture reminds me of Halloween.  We were so excited because it was our first Halloween in our own house.  We got over 150 kids, the lady who lived there before us said she never got more than 10.  I’m so glad we were prepared for lots of kids (I figured if I didn’t get many it could all go in Junior’s pinatas.)  Nehemias followed a custom that he says is common in Mexico—he cooked for the parents. OMG HIS TAMALES ARE AMAZING! If we weren’t already married we would def be now.  We live in a small town 10 minutes from my rez so people didn’t think it was strange…although they were surprised.  The next day I lost count of the people that came up to me to rave about his cooking while I was running errands.

Anyway, back to Halloween. It ruled.

She couldn't decide on a costume

She kept changing her mind...

Until she went back to her first choice

My lil' punkin

Luckily there was a back up costume due to an unfortunate diaper explosion

Today was First Nation Remembrance Day here in Canada.  This is a link to my late Mosom’s story from 1999, he has passed on now but I think it deserves a click.