Friday, August 7, 2009

A year in Hyattsville

Well, here is a photo of my home into which we moved one year ago this weekend. The Virginia-to-Maryland switch has gone reasonably well; I really miss all the great restaurants and retail over there in the Old Dominion as what's available here in Prince George's County is not much to write home about. Then again, one of my great discoveries was a Massage Envy outlet that was almost half the price of what I was shelling out for shoulder rubs to the south. And the community "feel" to this area is lightyears better than what I had, plus the availability of kids, family-friendly stuff for Veeka, lots of people with children and WAY more support than I had available in Virginia made it a very good move.
Fortunately nothing awful, other than a broken garage door, happened my first year and the biggest problem I have is keeping my tomatoes out of reach from the squirrels. MUCH nicer neighbors than what I had in Falls Church (although the people immediately next to me in my former condo were nice enough) but the 2 Hyattsville list serves I am on have been invaluable as to helping me out in so many ways. Living only 5 miles from work is one good idea. The biggest pain has been switching doctors, etc. The first dentist I found here did not work out so will try another. Last week I visited what I thought would be Veeka's new pediatrician but walked out after we were kept waiting 40 minutes. There were no toys to play with and Veeka was bouncing off the walls. And the waiting room was dirty and there was little privacy; you could walk 3 steps down the hall and watch what was going on in one of the exam rooms. When Veeka did just that - run down the hallway and gape at a little screaming kid getting some kind of shot - I bolted.
My next choice for pediatrician is over the county line into Silver Spring - a longer commute but I was getting so many mixed reviews of the local kiddie doctors. A shame one must go to a richer county for better service but that is the way of it here in PG County which deserves some of the bad rep it has for things just being a lot shabbier than elsewhere in the DC metro area. However, the park system is great but apparently the schools are not - a headache I will have to face a year from now.
Veeka is growing like a little stringbean - up and down - but not OUT, meaning some of her clothes from two years ago are still fitting her. Am dragging her to that newest pediatrician a month from now for a physical just to make sure everything is on schedule but she looks as healthy as can be and gives the pre-school people fits because of her high-energy antics and refusal to take naps. I have gotten very strict about the latter and told her she MUST sleep at naptime (she is a bear if she does not) because I have gotten some very unhappy notes from her teacher informing me what a terror she is at naptime (rocks back and forth and sings to herself, wakes up the other kids, sometimes runs around the room - aargh).
Her vocabulary is doing great so no more special ed this coming year like she's had since she came here.
As for me, am passing around galleys of my new book which is available here should you wish to pre-order! More on that for a later post. Am preparing to go to Minneapolis in a little more than a week to cover the Lutherans so am using this coming week to wrap up many loose ends.

1 comment:

Rob said...

Julia... hi! So glad to hear that Veeka is growing and talking up a storm. About the naps... or trouble with them I guess would be more aptly put... no doubt orphans have a higher level of anxiety than most. I should know of course... I am one.

One of the best things Mom ever did for me was make me aware of that fact that I am one at a very early age. Over the years as I have grown into the knowledge of that I still to this day struggle to believe... as the 101st Airborne has to believe in their parachutes... and that John 5 is true... He will not leave us as orphans.

In the same way I am probably farther from "Be anxious for nothing" than any other verse in the Bible. Anyway... though you already know all of this... maybe it helps now and then to be reminded that the unique challenges Veeka presents are common to her tribe... and the love of a mother can make all the difference in the world... and you are doing exactly that. Love, Rob