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A diary of both my life and my art work, a reflection of time and growth.
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Friday, February 01, 2008

With All My Heart

I made this card using Beate's Weekend Sketch. At first glance I wasn't sure about it but.....I LOVE how it turned out!! I used Verve Visual's Heart to Heart set. Don't cha just love the scroll hearts. The DP is from Daisy Bucket's Love You collection.

It has been a long time since I have used Cool Caribbean I just love how the red makes it pop.

Well lucky me I have both kiddies home today from school, both their classes are downhill skiing and they didn't want to go. Steph has tried downhill for past three years but always seems to land in a tree, so this year being as self conscience as she is (13 on February 20th) she didn't want to humiliate herself this year.....LOL!! She's too stinkin' cute!!

Megan has cross country skied and hated it but has never tried downhill, being she has great difficulty receiving instructions we decided it would be better for her to sit this one out. Megan was so excited this morning when I told her she could stay home.....a homebody just like her Mom.

We have a super big decision to make regarding Steph and going to high school (gr. 8) next year, so maybe I could hear some feedback from you to help guide us to the right decision. Ok this maybe long but here it goes. Steph has a combination of neurodevelopmental disorder, cognitive diorder, and gross motor disorder, she does so well considering all but her gr. level is about gr. 2 and her emotional level is that of about an 8-10 year old, good for us since she's not boy crazy yet......LOL! So here are the deets in gr.9 she will be eligible to enter a program at another high school that is perfectly suited for her lots of life skills, community outings, swimming, modified academics . But for gr. 8 there is nothing like this so here is our dilemma she can go to the local high school where she will attend classes like every other student, but virtually no help, they are saying very little if any aide time. So this would be like putting and 8 year old in a high school environment.

Our second choice is keeping her in the elementary she is in, she would retain her gr. 8 status but would be in a class with gr.7's so essentially she would be doing this year over again. Right now she has aide time, modified math, reading, science, socials, life skills, adapted aquatics, cooking, and all the other stuff like PE and art.The school would also explain to her peers that she is a gr8. student just hanging out for one more year until the high school she will be attending is ready for her. She has flourished this year her reading level went from gr.1 to gr.2 level. I am leaning toward keeping her in this environment, she seems a little upset about staying back, but she also doesn't understand how difficult it would be to in a class with no help, never mind how difficult the first year of high school can be for an A typical child.



So if you have any input I would love to hear it. I feel like no matter which way we choose to go, that we will be looked at like bad parents, I hate making these kinds of decisions. I can't tell you how unhappy everyone was when I decided to keep Megan home an extra year. She was enrolled in her EIBI program and had only 5 words when it came time for kindergarten and she was wild, if she went to kindergarten she would have her EIBI hours reduced, if I kept her home she could have one more year full time with the EIBI. The school was not happy when I decided to keep her home, however by the time she entered kindergarten the next year she had over 1000 words in her vocabulary and had settled down nicely!!! Needless to say in the end the school was happy with our decision. But it was hard on us emotionally. We live in a small town so we get a lot of looks etc for making the choices we make regarding our girls, not that this would every stop me from doing what I think is best, I am a big girl and can handle it!

Sorry about the huge rambling I guess I am just feeling a bit insecure, I used to have my Mom (currently she is working in a diamond mine, so I have no way of contacting her for the next 2 weeks) and my Dad who is no longer with us to bounce these things off of. Did I mention they need a decision by Wednesday. Sorry for the long post.

Supplies:Verve visual stamps, heart to heart, real red, cool caribbean, and ww card stock, daisy bucket love you DP, real red ink, heart punch, brads, ribbon.


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45 Comments:

Anonymous beate said...

Kelly,

Your card is absolutely beautiful! Thanks for playing with the sketch.

What a tough decision to make. I can't even imagine. I don't know, I am tending to keep her another year in elementary school since she has more help there. Maybe they can make her 7th grade next year a bit more challenging then the one she had this year. How frustrating that 8th grade doesn't offer a special class for her.

Big cyber hugs and blessings

February 01, 2008 10:09 AM  
Anonymous beate said...

Kelly,

Your card is absolutely beautiful! Thanks for playing with the sketch.

What a tough decision to make. I can't even imagine. I don't know, I am tending to keep her another year in elementary school since she has more help there. Maybe they can make her 7th grade next year a bit more challenging then the one she had this year. How frustrating that 8th grade doesn't offer a special class for her.

Big cyber hugs and blessings

February 01, 2008 10:09 AM  
Anonymous Beverly aka beestamper said...

love your card... now on the the more serious issues at hand... I am certainly in no way envious of the decision you must make. Know where she is academically as well as emotionally, the obvious choice would be to keep her where she is, explaining as best as you probably already have...Sounds to me like you kind of already are leaning that way, just needing some reassurance. Parenting sure is hard. Just a thought... is there anyway she could stay where she is, but take 1-2 classes at the High School? Choosing 1-2 of her best subjects/interests. Of course, without an aide, this will most likely mean more help from you, but maybe it is worth inquiring about.. a compromise that would make both you and her happy. Praying for you in your decision...
Big hugs...

February 01, 2008 10:20 AM  
Blogger Angie said...

Hi Kelly,
I love your card! Someday I'll be able to stamp like you!
As for your decision, I think you are being a wonderful mother by contemplating and asking for opinions on what to do. You obviously are trying to do what is best for your darling girl (beautiful picture BTW). I think, in the long term, it would be best to keep her in her elementary school one more year. It will probably be difficult at first with how people will react and how your daughter may feel held back, but in the long term it will probably be best. There is no sense in rushing her through, is there? I don't know all the details or the history, but that is just my opinion on it all. Also, pray on it and no matter what happens, He will bring it all to His good in the end. Good luck with everything Kelly.
<3 Angie

February 01, 2008 10:21 AM  
Blogger melissa.flieg said...

Hi - love the card by the way. As for the tough choice you have to make about your daughter's education I'd say it sounds like it would be best to leave her in the elementary school for anohter year and then transfer her to high school the next when she will be able to attend a program more suited to her needs. Best of luck with your decision. I will keep you in my prayers.

February 01, 2008 10:42 AM  
Blogger Angel W said...

LOVE this card, kelly! And I think you are leaning toward the right decision as that is what your "Mommy" gut is telling you. Sounds like you have made good decisions in the past so you will here too. I'll be praying for you!

February 01, 2008 10:51 AM  
Blogger Lynn Mercurio said...

Stunning card, Kelly. You're right about how the Cool Caribbean really makes the Reb POP...it's an absolutely yummy combination. TFS

February 01, 2008 11:22 AM  
Blogger Alexandra said...

Absolutely gorgeous card Kelly! As for your daughter, it sounds like it may be best to leave here where she is for another year - what a tough decision to make! You are an awesome mom and I know you will make the best decision for her! *STAMPIN HUGS* Alex

February 01, 2008 11:28 AM  
Blogger Flossie's Follies said...

High school is tough and kids are cruel, just the norm, the hormones are raging and you have to pick on someone. I would not put her in the High School if she is not going to get any help and assistance, think it would hurt the situation, too back she could not just skip to the next grade. Oh, Love the card, but then I love all your cards.

February 01, 2008 11:43 AM  
Blogger Lorie said...

What a wonderful card...it just makes me smile!

You know what? No one knows what their kids need more than their mom does. I say that you need to go with what your gut is telling you.

February 01, 2008 11:44 AM  
Anonymous Inkylin said...

I also think it would be best to leave her where she is for another year. High school can be brutal and can leave lasting scars on someone no matter how small or large the high school is. I know you will make the right decision.

Linda

February 01, 2008 12:08 PM  
Blogger Heather Leech said...

Hi Kelly,
I have a Steph who's also going into grade 8 next year. I worry for her as she's not as 'mature' as most of her classmates. I can only imagine how difficult it is for you and Jason. I work as a Special Ed Asst. and from what you've written I would be inclined to keep her in her elementary school. It would be hard enough to make the transition to high school, but without any support...yikes! I'd really be wanting her first experiences there to be as positive as possible. My son had autistic behaviors for most of his elementary school years, although he didn't meet the criteria for autism. We were fortunate that his behaviors began to diminish when his language started to catch up which was around grade 4. He had alot of catching up to do socially, but by grade 8 he had friends (which was all I had hoped for when he was young!) So I can really relate to your dilemma. I hope all goes well for you and Steph!!
*hugs*
Heather L.

February 01, 2008 12:17 PM  
Blogger Alana said...

What an amazing card! I love the dimension. Your daughter is truly adorable. I wish I had some words of wisdom for you. I'll keep you in my thoughts and prayers that you'll find the best way for her.

February 01, 2008 12:31 PM  
Blogger Tracy.H said...

Kelly,

Your card is simply beautiful! Love it!

As for your daughter? Like everyone else has said...it sounds like you have pretty much made your decision. And god knows I can only imagine what a decision like this would be like...I think keeping her where she is another year makes the most sense. High School is already a pretty emotional experience...I think it might be too much too soon. I wish you all the best of luck with your decision. And by the way...she is so beautiful!! :0)

February 01, 2008 12:32 PM  
Blogger Kathy W said...

Kelly, stunning card. Love the colors on this sketch, and the Verve hearts are so pretty! I would vote for keeping your daughter at the elementary school where she has support. The staff may be able to differentiate curriculum so that it doesn't seem as though she is "repeating" this year. Also, maybe there are social opportunities where she can get together with any friends going on to high school? (if friends are an issue) Cyber hugs to you; decisions about our kids are always so hard, and we do so much second guessing. I'm sure you and Jason will make the best decision for your daughter.

February 01, 2008 1:10 PM  
Blogger Michelle said...

First off Kelly I want to say this card is beautiful - I love the colors. Gorgeous.

As for your decision, I think personally you are leaning towards the right direction in keeping her back until Grade 9. I totally agree with everything you think. We cannot worry about what everyone else is going to think, you just need to do what your hearts think is right, as a Mother and Father you know what's best for your child.

My son turned 4 in September, he has been going to Speech Therapy since he was probably about 18 mos & worked with an Aide for 1 year (ended last June) if not earlier & so when it came time for him to start Preschool in September of 2006 at the age of 3 something "inside" of me (was really tugging on my heartstrings) said that he was not ready, he was not potty trained, this was a biggie for me, he would have had to have his Aide with him & I just didn't want him to "feel different" so I held him back for 6 mos which turned into 1 year because I couldn't get him in, but, in January of 2007 he was potty trained (so 4 mos later) - he was ready. Now I know it's a little different than your situation - he was just delayed in speech & is otherwise a happy, healthy little boy but, I just wanted to let you know that I knew in my heart what was right & you will too. Sorry so long!

February 01, 2008 1:12 PM  
Blogger Wanda. said...

Your card is beautiful.

And as far as children go. We are the parents and we know them the best. We make the decisions and we do it in our children's best interest. Making decisions that aren't favorable to other people should not matter in the least. It's not their child. Had the shoes been on their feet they may think differently. And NEVER let what other's think get in the way of what is best for your children.

And P.S. I want your cute puppy!!! LOL

February 01, 2008 1:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Your card is beautiful--- Now on to the hard question- I think you know the answer- It is right in your heart-- I am a retired elem. teacher and I think the best decision is to keep her in the same environment for another year. Do not care what others think-- This is your child and you know her better than anyone.In the same school her basic skills will continue to improve but if you send her on to high school without support you are setting her up for failure and she will hate school.Karen Naber(hpnaber@msn.com)

February 01, 2008 1:47 PM  
Anonymous Harriet (scs hskelly) said...

I don't normally comment on blogs tho I read them daily but I just wanted to put in my 2 cents since I have been dealing with my daughter who has learning disabilities and is now a senior in high school. My opinion is to keep your daughter where she will be most successful. Sounds like the 7th grade again. 8th grade is too young for high school in my opinion even for a child that doesn't have any learning or developmental issues. There are too many older kids in high school and it really is a bad mix. I know it is hard to know what to do so just keep in mind where your daughter will be most successful and will feel good about herself.
I'd love to hear how it goes and what you decide.

February 01, 2008 2:02 PM  
Blogger Elizebeth said...

I'm sorry you have to be put in a tough place, and that you should feel bad for your decisions.

I would probably keep her back in school where she has help and can learn more. I would feel really worried about sending her to school without any help. I hope you can make a decision you feel good about.

BTW: beautiful card!

February 01, 2008 2:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Kelly,
Your a brave young lady to put yourself out there and ask for help. It always makes the burden easier to carry if we have people on our side. Your story is in some ways similar to the circumstances we found ourselves in when our daughter was in grade 7. She had been diagnosed (for a lack of better words) with learning disabilites and attended resource classes for most of her elementary school years. When it came time for her to graduate to jr. high school (grade 8), she was already having difficulty with 2 subjects (math & reading). The school she attended really didn't see much wrong with this and wanted her to continue on to gr. 8. That's when my husband and I decided it was time to intervene. We met with the school principal and in no uncertain terms advised him that we wanted her to repeat gr. 7. He was against our decision and strongly felt that because all her friends were advancing so should she. To make a very long story short, my husband and I stuck with our decision and to this very day I have never had any regrets. Today at 31 years of age, she is married and the mother of two wonderful little boys and works as a Finance Officer at her place of employment. I wish you every success in making your decision but please follow whatever your heart says to you. You will make the right decision. It doesn't matter what someone else feels or thinks you should do. Wishing you all the best, she's a lovely little girl.
Sheila

February 01, 2008 2:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kelly,
The card is beautiful and well as your daughter. I think that you should go with what your heart is telling you! Giving her one more year in an enviroment that she feels safe and will improve versus putting her out in the high school enviroment with all of the hormones going whacky and the teens feel like they know it all would really be hard, especially if your daughter will be on her own. You are a Great MOM!!!! You have taken her this far and see how she has transformed - you need to go with your heart. God Bless and you will be in my prayers! You are an amazing person and MOM!!!

Bev
Rette Mom

February 01, 2008 2:41 PM  
Anonymous Char said...

High school in 8th grade??!! What happened to high school being grades 9-12??!! They are still so young in 8th grade!!

(I have a Steph who just turned 12 the other day. She is in 6th grade.)

I would like to see you keep her where she is. Sounds like she is getting a better education than she would if you let her go to high school. Little to no aide time if she moves up??!! Are you kidding??!! EVERYONE has the right to a good education and it sounds like this school district is failing to provide what your daughter needs. You should take your time with her education. In time, she can always move up in grades but can she move backwards to where she may fluorish better? What would THAT do to her self-esteem?? Plus, everyone knows that high school can be hell... why take chances with such a huge unknown?

Maybe you could try to have her view her stay in elementary as she is the leader... you know someone the smaller kids can look up to and model after. Show her that she is special in more ways than one!

Confusious say "better to be a big fish in a small pond than a small fish in a big pond"... not really. I just made that up. But it sounds good doesn't it??!!

Best to You,

Char

February 01, 2008 3:19 PM  
Blogger Lisa C. said...

wow, I would certainly lean towards keeping her where she is for another year. The kids in 8th grade are so much more..hmm..I don't know..mature? They act like they know so much and such. I would worry about her in that situation that she might get taken advantage of and not have the resources she needs there.

February 01, 2008 3:21 PM  
Anonymous Lisa L. said...

Very tough decision. Fortunately the high school where we live has two amazing programs for kids. There are aides, moderated curriculum, one on one, lifeskills, trips, fun, etc. They learn as much as they can. And the rest of the kids adore them. They are part of all of the high school activities too. I wish you had that. I think I would keep her back a year. I can't imagine how hard it would be in highschool with no support. Good luck with your decision making.

February 01, 2008 4:01 PM  
Blogger Allison said...

From the sounds of it, you already know what the answer to this question is Kelly...you know your girls best and I think that especially girls need to be ensnared in supportive situations. Let the lookie-loos say what they want...helping your girls develop into self-sufficient, happy women is your job and you are apt to know what's best. (Besides, these are the same people who will give you attitude if they don't turn out ideal as adults either...)

February 01, 2008 4:52 PM  
Anonymous eileen m said...

Go with your instinct -- keep her where she is. I did subbing in the public school (GED now), and it can be a jungle. If she's had a good year, she'll be much further ahead to stay in the same environment. She'll be the one with the experience and the smarts if she stays where she is!! Stick to your guns and do what you know is right for your girls!! Bless you!

February 01, 2008 5:26 PM  
Blogger moonchild72 said...

You are a great mom!!! I think your daughter is going to have more opportunities for growth, if she stays where she is. She has aides and help there. It is really hard to go from an environment with help to one without it, let alone it being high school. I know your stamping friends will stand behind you whatever decision you make. I hope everyone will support your decision.

February 01, 2008 5:36 PM  
Blogger Deborah said...

Your card for Beate's challenge is just wonderful! Your lovely daughter is certainly blessed that she has such a responsible loving parent! It is a difficult decision, I do sense that in your heart, you feel that she will be better prepared for high school next year or when it is right for her. Hope you don't feel under pressure, it is what is best for your baby! High school is rough in the best of circumstances,as mentioned. You will do the right thing for your daughter, as you know her best! Hugs, Deb

February 01, 2008 6:14 PM  
Blogger Heather said...

The card is great- I love that scrolly heart.

As a parent you have to act on the best interest of your child. Follow your heart- you know your children better than anyone else. When you try to make everyone else happy no one will end up happy (been there, done that). Do what you think is best (I lean toward keeping her back so she can get the services she needs later.)

February 01, 2008 7:01 PM  
Blogger Jen said...

Kelly,

What a tough decision for you and your family to make. Your girl looks like a real sweetheart too by the way. From the sounds of it, it appears that keeping her in the elementary school for another year may be the route to go. Do what feels right in your heart and your decision will be the "right" one. To have her attend "high school" with no help or guidance could be quite scary for her.
Hugs!

February 01, 2008 8:02 PM  
Blogger Gerriann said...

This card is fantastic! I have sent you a personal email!

February 01, 2008 8:28 PM  
Blogger Sandra Smart said...

wow Kelly, big decision to make. But I am going to give you my two cents. I have a daughter who has a learning disability, so she has alway been in the special education classes which sounds like what your daughter has been in. Just knowing how she and her classmates get treated when they are outside of the classrooms, I would suggest to you to keep her in the same environment she is in. Unfortunately, kids can and will be cruel at that age, so why put her through all that? One year will not hurt her or hold her back in any way. And she will probably continue to flourish just as she has been doing.
I will say a prayer for her, and for you in having to make this decision.

February 01, 2008 9:03 PM  
Blogger Melanie aka Batgirl said...

I love this card! great use of the layout and the Coribean paper! I would have to say it might be best to keep her back a year. She might get so overwhelmed with no help and then feel bad about it that it could set her back? but thats just geussing I dont know alot about hi school as my kids are little and I home schooled all 12 yrs! lol :)

hugs and I know your an awesome mom and will do whats best for you all!

February 01, 2008 11:02 PM  
Blogger sharon said...

Hi Kelly,

Thanks for sharing your lovely cards. They are really great.

My input on steph's schooling is to keep her at elementary school until she can enter the program where she will get help and appropriate courses. Sending her to High School unsupported is just going to set her back and cause so many problems. Pay no heed to the people who don't approve of your actions, they know little and probably care even less about your family. I'm sure Steph will thrive on another year of improving her skills and will be more able to deal with the transfer to high school given that extra year of 'shelter'.

Good luck to you all,

Cheers,

Sharon

February 02, 2008 12:40 AM  
Blogger Stamper Gail said...

Nobody ever said being a parent was easy huh Kelly. I think that you already know in your heart what is best for your girls. I can fully understand why you might be feeling a little insecure, but rest assured we all go through these times. You always want what is best for your child no matter if they are 2 or 32. Just be sure to include your girls in any decisions you make for them to help them understand what you think is best for them.

I will be sending you all the best and many prayers that you will find comfort in whatever decision you make.

February 02, 2008 5:04 AM  
Blogger My name is Michelle said...

Kelly,

I would tend to lean towards keeping her in 7th one more year. I think that if she moved on to an environment with no assistance and a program that doesn't take into consideration her circumstances that could be very nerve racking for all of you. You seem to have been making the right decisions for her all along to I would go with my instincts if I were you. Educate yourself on your options then decide. I wouldn't worry about what other people think. If someone is being judgemental about a decision you make that is in the best interest of your child then that's probably someone whose opinion should be taken with a grain of salt anyway. It's much easier to judge someone else's dec ision when it's not your child involved.

February 02, 2008 7:21 AM  
OpenID mjalbright said...

Wow, that's a tough decision you are faced with. I thought (maybe it's just in the state I live in) that every school had to offer assistance.
Sorry that I can't offer support. Sending hugs.

Great card. So bright and cheery.
Enjoy your weekend.

February 02, 2008 7:54 AM  
Blogger Rose Ann said...

I love your gorgeous card, Kelly!! Wow!

As far as Steph goes....I say to follow your intuition. Mums know what's best, and you obviously make the right choice when you held her back for kindergarten. Best wishes, and big hugs!!

February 02, 2008 10:04 AM  
Blogger Velta said...

Good Freaking Grief Kelly ~ You have such a fan club going here...So many people care for you and your wonderful family...I will pray for the right decision..."Thy Will Be Done."

February 02, 2008 2:28 PM  
Blogger Susan said...

What a wonderful Mother you are and You will make the right decision. I am a former sp ed teacher and no one knows your child like you. You made a decision ealier in her life of keeping her back one year and your choice was for the best. It sounds like in your heart you want to keep her back and that will be hard in the beginning but it will probably build her self confidence even more which will help her the next year. Teachers and other parents will always lend opinions and pass judgements on the choice you make~don't worry you know your child better than anyone. Good Luck to you and your family on this decision~you will be in my prayers!

February 02, 2008 4:10 PM  
Blogger Kelli in Kentucky said...

Kelly,

Wonderful card!!

My heart goes out to you. Parenting is a super hard job and decisions like this make if very stressful. Go with your heart. She is your little girl and you know what is best for her. I admire you in holding her back and working with her when she was young so she would be ready for school. I work in a primary school and I see children everyday that have not had someone who took the time to work with them. Your daughter is very blessed!! Your will be in my thoughts and prayers.

Kelli

February 02, 2008 8:02 PM  
Blogger Lorraine said...

Hi Kelly, lovely card...
I have a child with ld's and i thank god everyday that the high school he goes to gives him all the support he needs. without the support at a high school level he would be lost! Just being in a high school environment without any special needs is difficult. To have special needs and not be able to seek the help that the child needs would be so painful for the child and for the parent. If i were in your situation i would let her stay in the environment that she is in for one more year. it sounds like she is thriving there.
good luck to you, and God Bless!

February 03, 2008 10:07 AM  
Blogger Lori J said...

I'm sure you will make the best decision for your daughter. I don't have advice other than just pray and you will find what is best for her. :0)

February 07, 2008 9:05 AM  
Blogger Stampin' Meg said...

Kelly-it sure sounds to me like Steph would be best served by staying in her current situation with her Aide. How can the high school even think of just "main-streaming" her like that?!I thought that the public schools had a legal responsibility to meet the needs of special education students.

February 08, 2008 8:36 AM  

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