Saturday, March 14, 2015

Stair Robot...

We have had a ramp in our garage since we've lived here.  As Max has grown in size and weight, that ride down the ramp has only gotten more challenging.  It would take far more room than we have to have a ramp with the correct slope.

This problem has caused us to get creative...as we do.  A lift wouldn't work on the front of our house, because we would have to cut into the foundation to attach it.  A ramp wouldn't work in the front, back, or sides because there isn't enough space between houses, or from our front door to the street to place a ramp...unless our neighbors wanted a fantastic wheelchair ramp to reach beyond their front porches, or for Max to roll straight into the street.  It was just not possible.

I found one possibility, but of course it wasn't an easy solution.  Enter Max's newest robot, the Scalamobil.  This awesome new robot attaches to Max's wheelchair to climb him up and down steps!

Friday we got a visit from Brian at Frank Mobility to train us on using Max's new ride.  It's all about the balance.  The Scalamobil is incredibly stable and does most of the work.


While Max was still snoozing, Steve and I got a chance to get trained.  


I made Steve go first, so I could watch and take photos!


Then Max woke up and it was his turn.  This was his first trip out of the front door in years!


You can't see all the smiles he was giving us, but he thought it was a great ride!

Max's wheelchair rolls onto the tracks and clamps in at the handles.  The wheel system then climbs his chair up or down the steps.  There are little wheels that will brake at the edge of the steps.  It was actually pretty cool to see how we couldn't push his chair off the steps...the robot made sure he didn't go rolling down the steps! (Daddy too....but the robot was extra help.)


We will need to put some reinforcement strips on the edges of our steps so they aren't torn up.  And may need to replace the steps out front altogether to make it sturdier for the new wear and tear we will be putting on them.  But, once we practice more, we will have a great way to get Max in and out of the house! 



Saturday, March 7, 2015

Haiku by Max...



Max is starting to learn about poetry.  His teacher read him some haikus from the book Guyku, which is haikus for boys.  Max was feeling poetic on Friday and decided to try his hand at writing a couple for himself.

A little reminder on how haikus work, it's a 17 syllable poem.  The first line is 5 syllables, the second line is 7 syllables, then 5 more syllables to finish on the third line.

Max made both of these by using his computer talker, mostly in the alphabet screen.  That is where he can choose to either spell words, or start to spell words and choose from a list of words the computer auto-predicts.

His first haiku was called Officers:

Images I get
Officer outside. Job too.
People images. 


He was very proud of this poem.  We all gave him a lot of praise for writing such a great poem.  Then he tells us, "Today period." I told him the officers wouldn't be coming today, and it's not real likely we would ever have that many officers at our house again.  Nice try, though!

Max wanted to write a funny haiku next.  We read a lot of Shel Silverstein poems the day before, so this was his attempt at a funny, nonsense haiku.  For whatever reason, when Max is being absolutely hilarious in school, he says Aardvark, and then cracks up.  So with that explanation, I give you, Aardvark, the haiku. 

We people play game
With aardvarks comedy. And
Aircraft from the plays.
No real idea why he thought this was so funny, but he was adamant that every word was where it was supposed to be, and that was exactly what he meant.  And he told us it was funny, and laughed at it.  

I'm hoping he wants to write more poetry.  I think it's a great way to get his ideas across without having to make big sentences.   They show how smart he is, and his very funny sense of humor too. 


Wednesday, March 4, 2015

February 2015...

I've slipped again with posting, haven't I?

I don't think I have more going on than I have in the past.  Maybe I do.  I know our lives seem to be going non-stop!  As soon as Max is out of bed he's got something going all day every day.  Then at night it's the daily routine of cooking/cleaning/running errands.  Then the weekends are spent trying to get out of the house. And at the end of all that, I'm spent and don't feel like blogging!

I think a lot of our regular days are just that...ordinary and regular.  Which is maybe a place I never thought we would get to.  Certainly, there are still moments of - this is so not ordinary or normal, but even that has become ordinary and doesn't seem like something I should write about.

All writers have their blocks, and this year has felt like I have nothing to say.  My mind is preoccupied with a lot of things outside of the internet world.  And those things aren't ready to make it to the world wide web.  Someday, maybe.  But for now, I'll keep them to myself, my family and friends.

We will continue to let you know of all the great things Max does...and you'll probably see more of that on his Facebook page than on here for a while still.  Of course, I will try to keep the pictures coming, but my words fail me at this time.  So, until they're back.....Here is February in pictures.

Max and B went to check out his Whole Foods.  He was proud to show it off to her. 

We had unseasonably warm weather in February, which meant park fun with cousin. 

Max loves to get ice cream and coffee with dad at the train station in Denver. 

Max watching his fish tank during art time. 

This was just adorable.  I never tire of seeing him sleep in the morning. 

Max has started a new trend of trading his music instruments with Ms. Laura.  This week he had traded his glockenspiel for her chimes.  Through February he ended up keeping more than he traded to her.  I think they are on to a one to one trade now.  

Another day at the park.

Max got a new fuzzy lambs wool for him to sit on when he is having a rash on the backs of his knees.  

Friends visited and Max and got to listen to music during physical therapy.  Max always loves listening to Uncle Benji's music and he got a big kick out of listening to it live!

B surprised Max by bringing her banjo over for him to play and listen to.  He tried to do a trade with her, but she couldn't leave her only instrument!!

Friends and their sons.  


Max's new hat from my uncle...I don't think his little peanut head will ever fit in this hat.  
There we go friends.  I've got February covered.  I'll see how March goes and if I can get more writing done.  Chances are, we'll continue doing life and catch up here now and then.