Laurel has been a friend for many years, ever since her two boys (similar in age to Kellen and Tynor) were also at Little School. Kellen and Connor were in the same class for many years and were good friends, and Tynor and Brendan also shared some classes together and hung out sometimes.
Now that Laurel's kids have outgrown and we don't run into each other in the school parking lot anymore, we try to have lunch every other month or so to catch up and have a good visit. Usually we meet at Red Robin and have a great gabfest that goes on long after we finish lunch. As Laurel says, I hope we're still getting together when we're old ladies!
Today we finally had "Carissa time" again, after several weeks off. Niall and I have been going to see Carissa regularly at the Rosemary White clinic for a year and a half now. The clinic specializes in helping children with sensory integration issues learn how to manage their bodies in space, think before they act, make and adapt plans and strategies, and cope with strong emotions. It's hard to measure how much the clinic work has helped Niall, but I see him benefiting from his time there and I know how much progress he has made in the past couple of years. He loves to go and play on the equipment - big hammocks, swings, trapezes, etc. of all kinds.
Recently I've been bringing Cory as well, which Niall is not thrilled about (he misses that one-on-one time with both Carissa and me focused on just him) but it's helpful to him in other ways than the 1:1 time. And it's much better for Cory at this point, since otherwise he has a very long day and doesn't get home from extended care until nearly bedtime. So unless I can figure out another strategy (playdates? Pick him up from school after Carissa time?), I'm going to continue to bring him with us. The opportunity for Niall and Cory to work on the dynamics between them are clearly valuable, but I worry a bit that Niall isn't getting the focused time to work on his separate issues. No perfect solution...