Sunday, September 7, 2008


The young gazelle darts away from the wildlife researcher, back into the savannah. Her new radio-transmitter tag obviously annoys her slightly, but soon she will ignore it and continue her routines as usual...

Joy's Project Lifesaver ankle bracelet
Joy's been tagged! We're fortunate to live in one of the counties offering Project Lifesaver, a locator service for people at risk of becoming lost and not having the wherewithal to get themselves found again. Here's an article I linked to in a prior post, talking about the partnership between Project Lifesaver and law enforcement.

We had to call our local sheriff's department to start the process. We set up an appointment, and this week two deputies came out with the equipment and a stack of forms to fill out. It's always interesting when forms try to cover multiple situations (in this case a range from kids with autism to elders with dementia or Alzheimers) -- some of the questions can be laughably inapplicable!

In addition to the bracelet on Joy's ankle, about the size of a women's digital wristwatch, we were given an ID number and transmitter-frequency number. In case of an escape emergency, we're to call 911 and tell them that we're with Project Lifesaver. If we didn't happen to have the numbers on us, they could look them up, but having the numbers saves a few moments of time. We also got a small battery-tester device, that we're to test the anklet with once a day and record the results. Then at the beginning of each month, we have to pay a visit with Joy to the sheriff's department, turn in our testing log, and get a new battery and band. Batteries should last 45 days, but they change them monthly to be sure, and you get a new band because they have to cut the old band to get at the battery.

Joy didn't like getting the band put on, and tugged at it a couple of times the first evening, but since then has pretty much ignored it. I was glad to see that it wasn't as big a device as I was fearing. It would be less publicly noticeable if she'd wear it on her wrist like a watch, but I think she'd probably be biting at it all day. We're going into fall weather anyway, so it'll be invisible under long pants except at swimming lessons and such (yes, it's waterproof!)

There are consumer products on the market to do this kind of tracking, such as Ion Kids, but in our county at least, Project Lifesaver is grant and donation-funded for now, and also gets us that partnership going with law enforcement first-responders.

So leaving aside our speedy radio-tagged gazelle, there's another kind of tagging I wanted to address. For my family readers who don't inhabit the blog world on a regular basis... I've discovered that there's a practice among bloggers that has a bit of a chain-letter vibe to it, where bloggers get a set of fun questions and answer them in a blog post, and then "tag" several other bloggers that they'd like to see playing the game as well. (Here's an example from Trish at Another Piece of the Puzzle.)

Premio al esfuerzo personal blog awardBloggers also can recognize one another's work and create links to their favorite reads by means of awards. I was recently recognized by Barbara at TherExtras with the "Premio al esfuerzo personal" for "excellence in the expression of values in a blog". The values in question in this case, as defined by the award giver: "movement [as in body, not the other b-word], personal responsibility, politeness, acceptance, words used well, and love." Thank you Barbara! I'm honored!

I'm also going to break the rules, because what I'm supposed to do is post the rules that go along with the award, and then pass the award along further. I'm going to respectfully decline the opportunity, with thanks. In general, I figure not to participate in "tagging", mostly because as I said yesterday, my post ideas are outrunning my time. If you do tag me with the fun-questions sort of thing, I may answer in your comments, but probably not on my blog.

However, I can't finish this particular post without also acknowledging having received another honor, one that I don't have to feel guilty about not passing along because it's all mine! In honor of our meeting last week, Mama Mara says, "I officially dub JoyMama as Mama Mara's goddess of freaking miracles." Much appreciated, Mama Mara -- you rock, too!


datri said...

That's pretty neat. Hopefully you'll never have to use it.

Fortunately Kayla isn't a runner or escape artist (yet), although since she's nonverbal it does concern me. Right now we're just using those temporary tatoos (every try to get one of those on a kid who's sensory defensive to wet things?!?!)

Niksmom said...

That's great that Joy isn't pulling and fighting w/the device. I've thought about something like that for Nik as he gets bigger and able to open doors w/regular knobs now. Sure increases the likelihood of his getting out! Don't know where I'd put it though as he totally freaks out when we put things on his ankles/wrists. Too much time in the hospital, I think...

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on the tag for Kayla and the awards for you.

I always try to mention that answering one of my tags is purely optional, that way people can choose whether they feel like doing it or not.

JoyMama said...

Datri - good point about temporary tattoos. We've opted for the clothing-label route, though I need to do an update now that we've (finally) gotten a cell-phone.

Niksmom - I was afraid we'd have much more ongoing fuss than we did, but then again we don't have the hospital memories to work against. I'm so psyched that this looks so workable for us!

Trish - I always appreciate it when I see you and others being sensitive to your tag-ees' potentially variable interest level -- thanks! I should point out that this is one way blog-tagging is markedly unlike some of the chain snailmails or e-mails I've seen: "Don't break the chain or you'll have terrible luck for ten years," etc. Haven't seen that in a single one of my bloggy bunch -- I'm obviously hanging with good folks! :-)

mama edge said...

Yay you on the award and the anklet success! Blow a kiss to Joy for me, goddess.

Osh said...

ohhhhhhhh, I needed that tracking device 10 years ago.

Anonymous said...

I'm impressed!

You're most welcome!


Anonymous said...

Congrats on the awards... even though we've never met in person, your "excellence in the expression of values" truly shines through.