The Amazing Owen
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Jigsaw Goes To School
So I had to take a few days break to do a few things like laundry, paperwork, housecleaning, you know - the really basic stuff.  But it's time to get back at the blogging thing to show how things have been going.

On Tuesday (yesterday I guess that would be) Jigsaw came to school with us for the first time.  Since Owen spends such a large portion of his life in school, it was important that we try this very early in the process to be sure that we would all be able to cope in that environment.  Preschools are not known for their peace and quiet and even though Jigsaw had been exposed to malls and restaurants and every kind of store imaginable in her training, schools are not public places and therefore she had not been in one. 

So yesterday we loaded her into the car and headed off to school.  Elizabeth is fond of taking pictures of my backside :-) and you can see the toys I brought hanging out of my back pocket:


The toy (which looks just like Wubzy and therefore Owen LOVES) is to get Jigsaw's attention if she becomes too distracted by other things and I need a quick way to get her focus back on me.  But, as you can see, she's doing just fine.  I'll admit I was pretty nervous myself.

We spent a little while in the classroom, going through our normal routine:


Jigsaw hung out under the table being a warm and fuzzy presence while we did our work.  Next up was OT.  Jigsaw helped Ms. Angel to show Owen how to put things in a basket:



Owen generally doesn't much care for OT.  He has worked better for Ms. Angel than he has for any other OT in the past two years (we're still missing Vesna who he loved), but he would still really prefer if no one ever made him put anything "in" anything else.  And he tends to express his opinion rather clearly during these sessions.  Yesterday though he would try a bit of work and then reach out and pet Jigsaw and then go back to the work without ever really fussing. 

After school we headed home for some more work.  Leil and Elizabeth decided it was time for some heavy duty testing.  They had tennis balls, treats, toys of all kinds.  They had me walk Jigsaw through the room while throwing the balls, tempting her with treats and anything else they could think of.  To understand the full scope of this you have to understand that to Jigsaw tennis balls are the be all, end all of the Universe.  Even holding out treats didn't get her to turn her head.  So you have to get really creative to get her attention back on you.  Here is Jigsaw giving her absolutely full attention to Elizabeth who has a tennis ball in her hand:


In the end I simply had to take her out of the room to get her attention back on me, but hey - whatever works.  After that we were able to walk through the gauntlet without stopping.  Outside of the hyponitic influence of the tennis ball I think she was able to realize that it was a setup and got back to work in earnest.

But it's not all work.  You can't hang out with Owen without getting in some serious snuggle time:



Today we returned to the school for another day of fun.  First up was hearing therapy with Ms. Stacey:


I'm not sure what everyone is looking at there, but it seems to have everyone's attention!


After hearing therapy we went back to the classroom for a little while and then it was off to Art class!  Today they brought out the paint to make handprints and Jigsaw got in on the fun:



And here are Jigsaw's paw prints on the left and Owen's hand prints on the right:


They were mixing yellow and blue to make green. 

After art class we left and went to the Tokyo Express - a little Japanese restaurant for a little outing.  Jigsaw did wonderfully, of course, and so did Owen.  We have been working on getting Owen to have better manners in public spaces - loudly yelling "ya, ya, ya, ya" and banging on your tray is not exactly conducive to the digestion of the people around us.  I think all of my work in this area is finally paying off because he did fine today, other than throwing his cup a few times.  And Jigsaw just sat quietly under the table.  The people at the restaurant were really great, holding the door for us and Jigsaw, putting us in a booth with lots of room for Owen's chair and the dog, and just generally pleasant.  We'll be going back there again!

Oh, and Jigsaw is now here to stay.  She was supposed to head back home with Leil yesterday and return tomorrow.  We all talked about it yesterday and decided that it wouldn't be the best choice at this point. Owen and Jigsaw are really bonding well and a break at this point might make it harder to start again in a few days.  So it was decided that she can stay.  I felt bad that Leil didn't get her two nights with her girl, but I supported the idea that it isn't easy for Owen to start and stop a routine and it would be best to just keep them together since it is going so well.  So here they are right now:


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