Wordy Wednesday

5 Minutes for Special Needs

My life may not be a bed of roses:-

but you won’t hear me moaning about autism, or if you do, I’ll just be mumbling into my socks, because I am a natural grumbler, but please don’t compare autism to cancer.

“Boufmom” who blogs over at “Who says 8 is Enough” is hosting a fundraiser for her “chum,” from May 5th to May 12th.

As she says:-

‘We are holding this blog party in honor of Tuesday Whitt, my friend Jess’ beautiful twin daughter who bravely fought and sadly lost her 8 month battle with stage 4 neuroblastoma in January of this year.
We are doing this fundraiser to hopefully raise awareness about this awful disease and to raise money for the Tuesday Fiona Whitt Foundation, where all proceeds go towards pediatric cancer research.’

As “Jess” says:-

‘bereave |bi?r?v|

verb ( be bereaved)

be deprived of a loved one through a profound absence, esp. due to the loved one’s death : the year after they had been bereaved | [as adj. ] ( bereaved) bereaved families | [as plural n. ] ( the bereaved) those who counsel the bereaved.

It’s ok to reach out to us. You are not bothering us. It’s ok if you can’t. If you don’t know what to say, “I’m so sorry you lost Tuesday” , with, or with out a hug, is all we need. It’s ok if you say something and I start to cry. You didn’t cause it. Death caused it. You didn’t “remind” me of her death, because not a second goes by that I am not thinking of her. Aching for her. It’s ok if you see us out and we are smiling and appear to be doing well. At that moment, we probably are doing well. Other moments we are doing so, absolutely, not well. It’s ok if you said the wrong thing or didn’t say the right thing because there is no wrong or right thing to say. There is no wrong or right way to BE when your child dies. There is no right way to do this. We’ll figure it out together.

Thank you for loving us.’

Personally, I cannot even imagine what that would be like.

Whilst it may seem a little daft to start another giveaway even before I’ve finished the first “one,” timing has never been one of my strong suits. There is a family I know who have returned to Ireland who have battled with cancer and won a reprieve so this is a topic quite close to home, yet far away.

So without further ado:-

so here it is…….

……..maybe this one has your name on it, so please consider whether this is something that has touched your life.

Yes, I will bite the bullet and ship worldwide if we don’t go bankrupt first.

We are approaching Mother’s Day in the United States, the second Sunday in May, it may be that you might be able to spare a thought for this “family,” I hope. This giveaway will end on the 12th of May.

Whilst you’re at it, again with Mother’s Day in mind, maybe we can extend a green hand to help families worldwide with “Oxfam America Unwrapped,” as that would be fairly high on my list.

Mom Blogs

If you need some light relief, then head on over to:-

“DJ Kirkby” over at “Chez Aspie” and test your brain power.


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Try tackling it Tuesday

Tackle It Tuesday Meme
Try This Tuesday

Spring has Sprung around here and so it’s time to tackle the garden, or more specifically, how to train a plant to be a standard? Standard? What kind of Standard? The standard kind which has one stalk. There are many reasons why this is a useful exercise, most commonly for people with either small garden or narrow flower beds. If you can train the plant to do all it’s flowering at eye level then this frees up the bottom of the bed for other plants and effectively doubles the amount of blooms you can squeeze into a small space.

This is Jasmine which has many stalks as well as many runners. First find the thickest or most vigorous stalk and cut back all the others at ground level. Nick off any little sprouts that emerge from your main stalk.

Within a year you can move from a wild out of control plant to this stately one stemmed version. This of course is a honeysuckle not a Jasmin.

There will always be more sprouts at the bottom but they’re easy to remove on a weekly basis.

Be careful what time of year you attempt this tackle as you may wipe out a whole years flowers. Ideally this should be tackled at the end of the flowering season ready for the next year or just after the first flowering as here it is not uncommon to have three or four blooming periods.

Now if only everything else in my life were as easy as this! There again, ‘standard’ is probably a little over-rated except by certain control freaks like me.

Cheers

So don’t forget to add your name to the “original post list” and help spread the word for the giveaway, wouldn’t like to miss anyone out.


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The Good Old Days

Hosted by “Tracy” at “Mother May I,” but the photo-picture below will whizz you right there with one click.

Just call me snap happy.

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Tomorrow my daughter is off to Science Camp for four days and three nights. We parents have been encouraged to write letters to our children for them to read whilst they are away. Writing is not one of my strengths, or rather, legible writing is not one of my strengths. Hence she will be receiving the following enclose with a letter painfully scribbled by me.

Tuesday

1.

2.

3.

Wednesday

1.

2.

3.

Thursday

1.

2.

3.

Friday

1.

2.

3.

I drew them a long time ago before she was born but I think she’ll recognize the characters even if we are a decade older and greyer.

Yes, I know, everyone hates skinny women but I try and play a supportive role.

Cheers Dears

This could be yours:-

So don’t forget to add your name to the “original post list” and help spread the word for the giveaway, wouldn’t like to miss anyone out.


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Caught dead to rights

I flit around the kitchen with the phone clamped to my left ear.

Productivity is hampered without the use of my hand but the right one copes with the usual domestic tasks. After 22 minutes on ‘hold’ my patience wears thin. Supper is nearly ready.

The children continue to play Wii. We conduct a limited conversation roughly along the lines of “come see our video that we made,” v. “in a minute, I just need to finish cooking.” We repeat this exchange once every three minutes.

I sip tea from the second pot in the same time span, to whet my mouth for the silent curses of ‘hold.’ The musak on the telephone vies for my attention but the background musak from the Wii game, Swan Lake, massacred and digitally rejigged by the boys, is every bit as annoying, especially since the same musical phrase repeats approximately 6 times.

I love the Wii music game. It is one of the most effective therapy tools that we bought completely by accident. If we wanted a tool to practice eye hand co-ordination then we certainly found one. Of all the hand eye co-ordination tools that we previously purchased, none have been effective because they all lacked the magical quality of motivation. Now we have loads of motivation. I can’t put my hand on my heart and say that I have noticed any particular improvement in hand eye co-ordination but 30 minutes of daily practice over time, with this pleasant pastime, must have a positive effect….. eventually. As I sip the dredges of the 7th mug of tea my brain registers ‘full capacity.’

I peek at the boys and then slip into the bathroom. My son appears just as I sit down, as locked doors and privacy are an anathema around here, “now you are watch our video?” I look at him with the phone still on my ear, sitting and wait for him to play catch up.
“Wot?”
Look at me dear!”
“Yeah……I am lookin…..you are not doing cooking now!”
The phone musak stops to permit a voice on the line, “hi, how may I provide you with excellent service today?”

So don’t forget to add your name to the “original post list” and help spread the word for the giveaway, wouldn’t like to miss anyone out.


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Lookie, lookie, lookie!

Slurping Life
Get the code:-
Cut and paste
from this little
boxy thing below
Siblings not quite so rivalrous.

The influence of modern technology:-

Whilst the boys play ‘club,’ they require their sister to ‘guess the password’ to gain entry.

“Webkinz?”
“Nope.”
“Fuzzy Wuzzy was a bear?”
“Nope.”
“Social worker?”
“Nope.”
“Double Helix?”
“Hey! You only get three guesses. You chance expire. You get to try later. Hit reset password.”

More fruitiness with our first home grown strawberry, in April!

This could be yours:-

So don’t forget to add your name to the “original post list” and help spread the word for the giveaway, wouldn’t like to miss anyone out.


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Find your happy place

There are many occasions in life when is next to impossible to do the right thing. If you are forced to act in a manner in which you would prefer not to, then it’s a good idea to find a method of keeping your cool.

Some people are naturally calm, unflappable, no matter what life throws at them. They are people that I greatly admire but other lesser mortals, such as myself, are more easily ruffled.

Around here, a frequent occasion pops up in the form of car travel. The car has long been an aversive experience for the boys, but they have developed their own coping mechanism, namely circular little ditties and noises that help calm them. These phrases are not calming to either the driver, nor other passengers. For long journeys we have different strategies but for short trips it’s merely a case of grin and bare it. It is essential to concentrate upon the art of driving, remain unflustered and resolute.

We drive to the restaurant, a party of seven, with the boys independently perseverating in their own unique ways.
“Shut up already!” bleats my daughter, sandwiched between the pair of them.
“Don’t worry dear, we’re nearly there, just tune it out.”
“But I can’t,” she wails.
“Just take yourself to your happy place and lock the door.”
“But I don’t have a happy place.”
“Everyone has a happy place you just have to find yours, remember?”
“I can’t think about anything with all this din, it’s torture.”
“I think your current happy place would be a barrel full of darling Webkinz, up to your neck in them, all soft and fluffy……muffling the sound. You just need to imagine pulling the lid down over your head, turn the key in the lock……or are you too old for Webkinz now?”
“I can’t I just can’t.”
“Hey…….Mom!”
“Yes dear?” Ooo a chink in the chain, a brief pause.
“Dya wanna know where is being my happy place?” This, though he didn’t appear to be listening, seemed to be tuned out.
“Ooo yes please!”
“Tribe.”
“Tribe?”
“In dah jungle wiv all my Spore friends.”
“Ah. Of course.”
“Me!”
“Yes dear, where’s your happy place then?”
“Er…..my happy place is…….nest.”
“Ooo of course. How you love eggs still.”
“No……not eggs……..video games.”
“Sounds a bit uncomfortable and pokey to me!”
“Heaven mom, pure heaven!”

This could be yours:-

Don’t forget to add your name to the “list” and help spread the word for the giveaway.

p.s. should you happen to have a free mo about your person, you may wish to nip on over to “Kristina” at “Change.org” where you might want to consider signing the petition to encourage President Obama to fully fund IDEA as that would help make a lot of people very happy.

p.p.s. it is, of course, a very polite letter.

Cheers dears


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A circuitous route

If you had asked me a year ago, I would have been pretty categorical about quite a few things:-
He will not go outside willingly
He has a close affinity with cats and is fearful of dogs
If it’s not yellow or golden it is less preferred
He has no interest in plants or gardening
He only eats 7 to 13 food items
He is obsessed with Pokemon and electronics, and has no interest in anything else
I am always hunting for motivators

Whilst these points are more or less true, at the time they seemed quite overwhelming. It can be difficult to see the big picture when you’re concentrating on the minutiae. However perspectives alter as children grow, and all children grow even when they exist upon such a narrow and restricted diet.

All to often something unexpected clicks into gear and we shoot off in an entirely new direction.

I am mid conversation with my son in law Mr. B, as we paw over the seed box. We debate which seeds would be most suitable as a gift for his mother in Brazil, her colour preferences, the climate, custom restrictions, when my youngest son interjects himself, “I am love!”
“Yes indeed. What do you love dear?”
“Dah seeds,” he oozes with exaggerated ‘z’s.’
“Really? Which ones? The yellow Marigolds?” I guess as I waggle the seed packet before his nose.
“Noooooo,” is the breathy response. His finger tips walk through the paper packets, tentative and brave.
“Deez are the ones I am wanting.”
“Carrots? You don’t like carrots! You certainly don’t eat them!”
“I am grow carrots……pleaz?”
I step towards the door to the garden but his skips ahead and charges outdoors clutching the packet in a perfect pincher grip. Together we spend a thoroughly pleasant ten minutes in soil preparation and sowing. Yes, I said together. He is compliant at every step and there are lots of steps. Not only is he compliant, he is amiable and mysteriously motivated to perfectly complete a whole new task. But of course this is not enough for me. I just have to know.
“So……….why carrots?”
“Coz den my family will be eating dem.”
“Why do you want your family to eat carrots?”
“Den everyone will be seeing in dah dark, jus like me is doing.”
“You can see in the dark?”
“Meow.”
I do so love being proved wrong, narrow minded and overly pessimistic.

This could be yours:-

Don’t forget to add your name to the “list” and help spread the word for the giveaway.

Talking of giveaways “Sue Klein” at “Model Me Kids” is also having a giveaway but the difference here is that you can enter to win for your child’s “teacher!” and you know how I love teachers.

Lastly but by no means leastly, for anyone who feels that they are also miserable old skeptics like me, then go and watch this “video” on “U-tube” where Brits are at their very best.

Cheers dears


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Monarchs in the Republic

5 Minutes for Special Needs

If you want to be noticed at the annual Bunnies and Bonnets Parade……..

Motivation? If you’re ‘noticed’ you are more likely to win the candy being distributed by the generous parade goers.

This could be yours:-

Don’t forget to add your name to the “list” and help spread the word for the giveaway.

If you enjoy caption competitions and photographs, you may wish to nip along to“DJ Kirkby” over at “Chez Aspie” and test your brain power.

On another note, if you have a spare mo perhaps you may be able to help the “Fresh Air Fun,” which seeks to let inner city children experience time out in the wilds as you can see at their “website” where there are other videos about this non-profit venture, but this video below is my favourite = wordless!

And here is someone else who needs our help:-

You can visit Maddie’s family “here” at “A Mom of Two Boys.”


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Shark infested waters

Tackle It Tuesday Meme
Try This Tuesday

This week’s tackle is mammoth and unexpected as my boys have hit the Houdini stage of development. As with all special needs parents, vigilance is our watch word and when that doesn’t work we use padlocks, deadbolts and trip alarms. After that, the ammunition possibilities are a little limited.

I shall keep this brief as the children are on Spring break and I’m writing whilst they are asleep. I think my own sleep schedule is now officially canceled. I had another post entirely planned but this is more important.

I returned home today from the passport office to find both the boys in the front garden where they had climbed over the five and a half foot wall to avoid the locks on the door. Oh yes, well done boys, I am so impressed with your climbing skills, co-ordination skills, spatial awareness, teamwork, landing safely skills without splitting your respective noggins open on the concrete floor.

A wee while back “Mama Mara” suggested that I use my broken pots for mosaics, however, I have another and MUCH better idea. Jagged, shards of pottery shall henceforth be cemented to the top of every wall on the premises above a moat full of sharks. Well………….maybe if I had a little more time. Hence meanwhile I shall be using the lovely Spring Break to teach my children compliance.

Don’t forget to check out other “tacklers” as well as “Trish” and the “freebie list” at the end of last week’s “tackle,” giveaway either in the box or as a comment. You don’t need to have a blog to enter, merely a postal address.


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One time rule

Hosted by “Tracy” at “Mother May I,” but the photo-picture below will whizz you right there with one click.

Just call me snap happy.

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Yes the holiday is upon us. Mayhem ensues. Entertain, play and fun are the order of the day but pretty soon that can dissolve into chaos, at least around here in any case. I am actually writing this a week ahead of time so that I am prepared for the onslaught, especially after this evening,s excitement. Excitement comes in many forms, be that a general over stimulation or the frenzy of anticipation. Whatever it is, we experienced it tonight, a collection of whirling Dervishes.

I knew matters had reached the pinnacle when I said goodnight to them. We have a little night time ritual, different for each one. I won’t bore you with the mushy details but suffice to say that once I had finished my little luvvies and stood to leave, my son asked why we hadn’t had the long version of the luvvies? As we had just finished the long version of the luvvies, I was less than impressed. My words hadn’t registered at all. Not one of them. It brings a whole new meaning to the phrase ‘whispering sweet nothings.’

It made me think, think hard. It made me think that if I am to single handedly survive 11 glorious days with my children, 24/7, I need a little more ammunition to guarantee survival, if not sanity. Hence this is what I came up with. It’s a deal. A deal between me and them. I ask once, they respond. Yes, I can hear you cackling from all the way over there. You know I am a rule obsessed goal freak, but in this particular instance I have an ulterior motive. The motive is to remind myself to first obtain the attention of the child to whom I wish to speak, before I speak. Yes I know it’s step 101 but all too often I find that I slip up on the basics and am thoroughly surprised when I’m haring around the house nagging three smallish individuals many multitudes of times. It’s exhausting, for them and for me, as well as being completely pointless. Far better to do it once, properly, for everyone’s sake.

I’m sure that many of you have already survived the Spring Break but if you have any tips, I’m all ears. Interestingly, the circle still stinks of permanent marker four hours later after I’ve tidied up. Smell-aversion should certainly grab everyone’s attention!

So here I am with my reminder. As yet I haven’t decided whether to make it into a pendant, a mask or a head band, but I’ll keep you posted.

Don’t forget to add your name to the “list” for the giveaway and help spread the word.

I’m considering devising a poll:- how many parents need to cope with the holidays on there own? But of course some people have to do everything on their own, so I’ll stop moaning now. I can just about remember what it was like to be a single parent, but a single parent with autistic children is quite another matter.

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