Monday, March 17, 2008

Indoor Swing for Moose

Indoor Swing

Wife and I attended an autism expo here in LSC over the weekend. How nice not to have to drive 90 minutes from SCT! It was only about 10 minutes from Chesterley. We're still getting used to all this. The place was PACKED with agencies from all over the place, and tons of people. Some even brought their children; thankfully we had our trusty sitter at home with Moose.

Anyhow, we've had our eyes on some sort of indoor swing for some time. The act of swinging is theraputic for him, as it calms him down and keeps him level-headed. If he swings or does some other physical activity, then he can be more focused when going to school or learning other speech-related things. This is part of his "sensory diet," that he needs to feed each day. We have a great play set in the back yard, but he's not been able to go out there since last November due to the weather. The company that manufactures the indoor swing system was at the expo, and everything was literally half price. So we picked one up, and I assembled it Saturday afternoon. He LOVES it. These shots were taken minutes after the assembly was finished. There are a couple of other accessories that will be shipped later in the week, so I'll probably post more pics then.

We had planned on setting this up in the basement, where is actual play area is, but the doorway is two inches too wide. So, we choose the kitchen/dining room doorway instead. The bar can be removed pretty easily when friends come over for dinner (the blue supports remain, but I'll try to get over it). Sunday morning when I was cooking breakfast, he was swinging and watching me. That's different: the "watching me" part. It was almost like we were having a conversation while I made him breakfast, and that was way cool. When I was finished, I said, "OK Moose, come sit down and eat your breakfast." And he did with no protesting, no hesitancy...just following directions. And he was smiling, too. Wow. Anyway, click on the photo above to see a small set of shots of the swing.

Sunday, March 16, 2008


Spring break is over. I made a ton of progress this week...on my job. Not on my dissertation. Oh well. At least I made progress somewhere.


Monday, March 10, 2008

Spring Break?

I am stunned, flummoxed, mystified and surprised that it is already spring break, mid-semester vacation, and the three-quarter point through my first year of working full-time since starting, commencing, and embarking upon the doctorate, Ph.D. and terminal degree in higher education and the study of college. Being stunned, flummoxed, mystified and surprised often brings on a response of being redundant, repetitive, and monotonous in my communication and expostulation style. Forgive me, and I apologize.

Did I mention it's already spring break here? Great Moses do I have work to do!

Wednesday, March 05, 2008


I met with a new transcriptionist yesterday, the person referred to me during my "good lunchage" last week. It wasn't easy to physically let go of those tapes, but now it's done and hopefully her work will be as "good" and as "fast" as everyone else says it is. I'm confident it will be. Can't wait to see those someone else!

I left two interviews for me to work on alone. One is with a tape that unfortunately broke, and if I can fix it myself or get it fixed, then I'll be able to transcribe most if it on my own. Yes, I'm using microcassettes instead of doing these digitally. I still don't know how one would transcribe something digital...I have to keep rewinding the tape recorder with my foot pedal...were it not for the trust pedal, I think it would take me twice as long as if I had to remove my keys from the keyboard and use the mouse to click the rewind button on for a digital recording. I'm probably missing something re: the technology on this.

Anyhow, the other interview I'll transcribe myself is of a participant about whom I'm really rather worried. The subject matter of our interview was pretty sensitive, and I suspect this person's mental state may not be very stable. I will need to consider whether or not this person's contribution to the study will be skewed by this instability, or if it's part of the analysis in general. Not sure. I'm certainly not a pscyhologist, so I'm probably not qualified to assess this person's mental state. However, it's pretty clear there's something different going on. Anyhow, I didn't think it was appropriate to share this person's interview tape with a transcriptionist I've only just met.

In a future post, I will probably outline the process I'm taking for this analysis. I'm dropping in terms here like "open coding" that may not make a lot of sense if you don't work in this field every day. Besides, the act of writing it out here may help me in the long run with writing up the results chapter(s).

My next tasks for the short term will be to a) finish the transcribing of these two tapes I still have, and b) finish up the initial open coding of the six interviews that have already been transcribed (I've already completed two...or three?). Oh yeah, and I need to c) finish purging the home office/prison.

Am finally getting some focus! I suppose I'm still on a bit of a high from the feedback I've been getting about how close I am to finishing up.