Posted in Autism Support, Random nothings

Some days are better than others

I clearly remember that my first thought for the the day was: High Functioning my ass….

Not something normal to be a person’s first thought, but if you had the night I had, you would understand. Abby’s anxiety was out of control last night and she would scream blue murder if she would wake up and realize I am not holding her. I am right next to her. Like literally next to her in bed. Just not holding her. She would tap me in the face to wake me to hold her. That was my whole night. Constant. Non stop.

The rest of the day has not gone any better. We discovered our hallway cupboard – the one that has ALL our bedding, blankets etc in, has mold in it. So everything is on the floor in the bathroom at the moment, to get washed. So that is chaos by itself. But because of Abby’s anxiety she won’t even go to the bathroom by herself. So she holds it until it is almost too late. Run to the toilet screaming for one of us to come with, she can’t be alone. We would be too late resulting in her wetting herself, the floor and ALL the bedding on the floor. Wipe and repeat. Wipe and repeat.

In the middle of all this, Sky has been acting out like crazy. To a point where I actually decided to put her in a school. I have been in tears most of the evening and my spirit is just too tired.

We had to go to Kleinskool today – Kleinskool is an informal settlement just outside our city. I do charity work there and needed to go drop things. They are working on the roads and we ended up being stuck in traffic for hours. With a constant: “Mommy take me out of the seat. Mommy I need you”. While she is crying and leaning out of her car seat clawing on my arm to get her closer to me.

By the time we got home, I just had enough of this day. Just to find the neighbors left an anonymous note telling us that our dog barked the whole time we were out and we better make a plan to stop her barking while we are out. The dog has very bad separation anxiety and is with us 90% of the time. We can’t take that huge dog with us in the car for hours. So you know what neighbors, screw you.

My body has also been acting up and the doctors has narrowed it down to either early menopause or fybromaligia. So there is that…

So it is 23:45 and I now have to work because I could not do any work during the day because of the children’s constant needs. It just never stopped. My brain is tired. My body is tired. My spirit is tired.

But tomorrow (okay I have 15 more minutes to feel sorry for myself) is a new day. Big girl panties on…

 

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Posted in Autism Support, Random nothings

Our 3 year old has extreme anxiety

Our 3 year old has extreme anxiety… That statement can mean so much to so many people. It can mean your child don’t want to go to bed alone or get nervous going to school or are thinking twice before going down a slide. For us, with a child with autism, social anxiety and ocd it means:

For the last week Abby’s anxiety has been out of control. Last Thursday she woke up and said to me: “Mommy, feel my chest”. Her heart was beating out of her chest. We had to go out the day and I knew that was the reason for it. I begged her to stay home with me rather, it was school holidays and the play area where Sky will have her ballet will be filled with screaming toddlers. She would have nothing of it and demanded that we go with daddy and Sky. Against my better judgement, I gave in. We walked into the play area and chaos started from the first second. She immediately grabbed onto my neck and crying because children were too close to her and wanted to touch her or the things she wanted to play with. I walked out within 2 minutes of arriving. I took her to another space, but they were also busier than usual and she was in total panic mode. We couldn’t just leave Sky and the rest so had to ride the hour out in the center. I found a restaurant that was “not too busy” and had booths (booths are great). I pushed her in the corner of a booth and sat next to her, sheltering her from people. I put her earphones and phone on to drown out sounds. We sat there for an hour before we could get her to function enough to walk out.

Well, it is a week later and she is still not functioning without me. She won’t be left alone for a second – day and night. She would rather wee her pants than go to the toilet alone. While 3 of us are right here in the house with her. We have to sit with her on the loo, if she has a bath, Sky baths with her and still she needs an adult to sit with them. Night time becomes chaos. The dark scares the daylights out of her (pun intended I suppose!). We have 2 lights on in the room, the toilet light is on and the dining room light to shine even more light into the room. Still she will not sleep even just next to me. She holds onto me, pulling my neck right next to her face. If I move she is awake and ask where I am going.

As you can imagine this mama bear is tired, worried and emotional. We have tried so many things and the anxiety is just there. When we ask her what she is afraid of, she says she saw a wolf with a pig’s tail that wants to eat her. And no matter how much we try, we can’t get her to calm down about it. And the anxiety causes her to not eat. Yesterday for the first time in a week she ate about 4 bites of my pasta and last night she ate a bit of meat. Other than that, the only things I could get in her the past week is Pringles, grapes and baby Squish.

I am working 2 jobs and taking care of the house in all of this chaos and I know that I will need to do some massive research to get her some help. And then we are dealing with Sky – she is only 5 and we sometimes forget that because of her smart mouth. But she has really been acting out because she needs attention as well and mommy is taking care of Abby, she just can’t fit quality time in with her. Hubby is there and doing as much as he can to help and really takes care of Sky but she is really feeling the strain. Especially because if I have to work, I am asking her to not leave her sister alone. So she is taking on more responsibly than what a 5 year old needs to have. Ever. And with that comes a real bad attitude. She is giving us lip about everything and this mama bear is tired and irritated. So let’s just say life is a bit tense in our home at the moment.

But we are putting on our big girl panties and taking care of business, one minute at a time. And who needs sleep in anyway???

Posted in Activities for little ones, Home Made Everything, Homeschooling, Sensory play

Home Made Paint Safe for little ones

At what stage does everything stop going into their mouths? I will let you know when I find out okay!!  But until then I am always worried about things like paint and playdough as they taste it, it gets into everything. So a safe option is making your own. I use this very easy recipe

1/2 cup flour

1/2 cup salt

1/2 cup water

Mix it all together until you get the right “feel”.  Then divide it and add food coloring. It is so much cheaper than buying (especially if you have to make a LOT to keep them busy). It does keep a while if you put left overs in the fridge as well. Otherwise just chuck the left overs and make new batch when needed!

 

Posted in Autism Support, Healthy Eating, SPD Tips

Tip for sensory eating problem

I realized that Abby will eat much much more if she didn’t have to actually touch her food. Plastic forks etc is a big no no as well. Metal is also not a great option for her. So if I feed her with my hand she will eat. Some things I obviously can’t feed her with my hand so I have started doing some searching. i found these amazing little things. “Fruit sticks” They are made from bamboo, so they are not only cheap, re-usable and ‘not plastic or metal’, but also not damaging the planet.

If she wants a full apple, I can actually poke one in each side and she can eat them, holding the little handles.

She prefers fruit to anything else, so it helps a lot if I give her some cut up fruit and she can eat it with her little ‘stick’.

No messy hands – she usually goes into sensory overdrive when she touches fruit. She would cry, pull faces, panic sets in as she tries to get her hands clean. Her OCD kicks in to a point where she just can’t function.

So, yeah for small miracles.

 

They even work great for fruit bars

Posted in Autism Support

Potty Training Visuals

I have been asked to help some moms with potty training. I have done some research and visual aids seem to help a lot. I can make some and would like to sell them at basic cost. Now is the question, which ones would you like to see in our store:

The A3 size chart for against the wall? Or the Ring binder type. Pics for example

 

PS. A great read and resource for when your little one is starting:

http://www.timeforafuture.com.au/fact_sheets/toilet-training.htm

Posted in Activities for little ones, Home Made Everything, Sensory play

Edible Play Dough

 

 

Pretty sure I have posted this here before, but apparently it has vanished into thin air. So here we go again! My little one used to put everything in her mouth (except for actual food). So we made this play dough that is safe for them.

Homemade PlayDough Recipe

This homemade playdough recipe is simple, natural, and perfect for entertaining children. They enjoy making it almost as much as they enjoy playing with it!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of flour (whatever kind you have on hand)
  • ¼ cup of salt
  • ½ cup of water
  • 3 to 5 drops of natural food coloring

Instructions

  1. Mix together the flour and the salt.
  2. Mix together ½ cup of warm water with a few drops of food coloring.
  3. Slowly pour the water into the flour mixture, stirring as you pour. Stir until combined, then knead with your hands until the flour is completely absorbed. If the dough is too sticky, add more flour until it doesn’t stick at all.

Thank you to diynatural.com for the original recipe.