A New Chapter On The Horizon


Rolf and I sat behind the kids in church this morning and at one point I was overwhelmed by this fabulously normal image…the kids sitting together, messing around at times and having to be told to be quiet and focus (Rudy especially!).  I admit I had a hard time focusing on the pulpit myself as I soaked in this moment.  Rudy is becoming such a big boy…

I shared with you on June 1st that Rudy graduated from the Bear Club (his preschool class) on May 31st but he still had 4 weeks of summer school with teacher Dianne and friends to look forward to.  Sadly, Friday was Rudy’s last day of summer school so we had to say our final goodbyes.  When we think about where Rudy was at when he started school in October of 2011, it’s nothing short of a miracle to see how far he has come.  Rudy’s teacher communicated with us earlier this spring that she felt Rudy had exhausted all they could offer him at the Bear Club and so we began a dialogue with the Goleta Unified School District about bringing him back to our district in the fall.  You may recall that Rudy was sent to the Bear Club (a SB County special ed program) initially because our district wasn’t certified for non-ambulatory students at the preschool level.  GUSD can, however, accommodate a child with Rudy’s needs at the primary level and so a switch to Goleta is the natural next step.  The special ed classrooms scattered throughout our district will be seeing some changes next fall and so Rudy’s permanent placement won’t be determined this coming year…he’ll have a transitional year to give the new special ed classrooms and site changes a chance to establish themselves.  Since Rudy will likely need two years of Kindergarten anyway, I’m okay with it and I’m hoping this transitional year will allow for a special request.

For many reasons, I’ve asked the district to allow Rudy the opportunity to go to our neighborhood school, La Patera, for his first year of Kindergarten.  Olivia will be in 6th grade at La Patera this year and so she and Rudy have this one opportunity to overlap and have a shared school experience.  Although La Patera doesn’t have a special ed program per se, it is a very familiar place for Rudy and he is well known there.  I don’t expect La Patera would be a permanent placement for Rudy but I do think a year at La Patera would be GREAT for Rudy, for the typical kids that would be in his classroom and for his big sister who would be “over the moon” and so very proud to go to school with her little brother.  As it stands now, the district has suggested (but not made any promises) a blended schedule where Rudy would be placed in a special ed classroom located at the district office campus and then possibly spend a couple of days each week at La Patera.  I appreciate the district’s willingness to compromise but nothing is set in stone yet and decisions won’t be finalized until his annual IEP meeting in late September.  Will you join me in praying that the details would work out for Rudy’s placement at La Patera?  When you look at the big picture, no matter how you slice it, our family will need to be committed to supplementing Rudy’s education by creating an appropriate balance of mainstream experiences and special services to help him achieve his goals.  Because the circumstances within our district this coming school year seem to put Rudy in a bit of educational limbo anyway, it just feels right to allow him and our family this opportunity to fully engage with the La Patera community of families and staff who we love so much.  What a special chapter that would be for us all!!!

A final farewell to Teacher Diane!
A final farewell to Teacher Diane!
A big thank you to Nurse Eileen!
A big thank you to Nurse Eileen!
Bye, bye Franklin Elementary!
Bye, bye Franklin Elementary!

Rudy’s last week of summer school was also a full week for our family which included time with old friends Dave and Zane visiting from China…

Free slurpees from 7/11 ON 7/11!!!!
Free slurpees from 7/11 ON 7/11!!!!
High fives for Dave!
High fives for Dave!

And, the SBRM graduation dinners and celebration…always a special highlight for our family!

Rudy at graduation!  Have you seen a bigger smile...ever?
Rudy at graduation! Have you seen a bigger smile…ever?
Maxo at Guitar Jedi Camp...spending a little time in the recording studio.
Maxo at Guitar Jedi Camp…spending a little time in the recording studio.


A not-so-fun summer detail is Rolf’s knee injury that occurred two weeks ago…the ER doc and ortho first diagnosed Rolf’s injury as a torn ACL but it was determined this past week through a MRI that it’s not the ACL…it’s potentially a torn tendon…not a good thing.  The ortho ordered a second MRI on Friday and we’ll hopefully know for sure tomorrow.  Surgery is tentatively scheduled for THIS Wednesday.  Rolf has been a trooper but he’s in quite a bit of pain and is moving pretty slow.  We sure would appreciate your prayers…for a successful repair, a full recovery (from what we’ve been told, it’s a 9-month recovery) and for GRACE as we adjust to having another “differently abled” member of the family…:)…once again, we’re needing to adjust!

NOT a happy camper!
NOT a happy camper!

We’ll keep you posted!!  Thank you dear friends!!

Rudy doing a little summer reading...:)
Rudy doing a little summer reading…:)

15 thoughts on “A New Chapter On The Horizon

  1. Sorry for Rolf but wonderful news for the rest of the family. Looks like a mostly very happy family. I know the kids are helping with Rolf as they do with Rudy. Good luck and prayers for all.

  2. Gimpy!! (Sure looks unhappy!) Unlike my Rudy Boy who is not only smiling from ear to ear, but top to bottom as well!

  3. Wow, Trish! You are in my prayers and I have put you in our prayer box at my church for our prayer warriors to continue to cover you and your precious family in prayer! Much love to you and your fabulous family! ❤

  4. Oh Trish…always so much on your plate and always so dependent on God’s graciousness and mercy. I look forward to sitting down with you and having some time to reconnect. You and you family are always in my prayers. Updating us with how to pray is very much appreciated…Love you…Donna Richards

  5. So sorry, Rolf! I’ve got bum knees and they are no fun at all. But mine can be treated with a shot of cortisone from time to time, so that helps. I’m trying to stave off surgery as long as possible. Rudy has just grown by leaps and bounds this last year of school – and I’m so glad that the GUSD is working it out for him to be at your local school part of the time. I find myself praying that the diagnosis is wrong and Rolf can be fixed up without such a lengthy recovery time. Ouch. Ouch.

  6. Can you believe Rudy is ready to go off to kindergarten??? I’m having trouble wrapping my head around that one! He is, indeed, a “big boy!” How sweet it would new for both sibs to go off to school together a couple times a week!

    And poor Rolf! He looks sooo bummed out! He probably wouldn’t have minded as much if it had been in Dec or Jan. But smack dab in the middle of summer? Ugh! Poor guy!

    Thinking of you all so often, and send love, hope, and always, many prayers!



  7. Where have I been that I missed this blog? Trying to stay in air-conditioned places I guess. Thank God, Trish, you stay well and able to cope with all of the bumps and bruises of your household. My fervent prayers join others as you maneuver through this summe. Hang in there, Rolf! My love to all of you.

  8. Wow! Lots of exciting things happening. We will pray with you for the best! Poor Rolfie! Hope surgery goes well! and I love the summer reading pic. Too cute! Love you guys! Hope the summer is otherwise nice.

  9. May your continue to experience the presence of Our Lord in the inique ways He has set before you. I see sooooooooo much growth in each of your kids (and you two) as each challenge is faced and then is passed. It is like the 40 years in the desert where God directed His people daily by fire and ‘cloud’. They did not know where they’d be going each day but God did. He provided and guided.
    I am always so encouraged as I walk along with you, albeit at a distance. Any difficulties that I face in life seem to be that much ‘easier’ because of how you teach me to just keep moving on in faith.
    For the days that are wearisome may the joy of our Lord be your strength. For the days that bring tears and frustrations and just plain ole done-in feelings, may you know you’re being prayed for. May you know He sees all the tears, captures them and turns them into times of refreshment.

    Hugs to you all,
    Your sister in Chrsit,

    Over and out,

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