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

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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.

 

Posted in Random nothings, SPD Tips

For a moment there, we were a normal family

We have discovered that Abby is a little beach bum! Yeah! So on Friday evening we had to drop something down at the beach front and the girls begged us to let them go to the beach. So we went down to the beach and they loved playing in the sand. We then went to McD’s for ice cream. Everything seemed so ‘normal’. And I sometimes wonder if parents realize that there are parents that would anything for this kind of normal. Abby did so well and we were so proud of her. She was out and about around people, no tantrums. NOTHING.

It obviously only lasted until we hit home – this is a normal situation for a lot of autism parents. As soon as they get back into their safe space they ‘let go’ and well, all hell breaks loose. She had a meltdown but we got her to bed quickly and I just held her until she fell asleep.

Tonight we went to the Boardwalk and she again did so well. My heart just wants to burst with pride. We came home and there were no meltdowns tonight. She just asked to go to bed as soon as we got home.

It is the small victories. 🙂

 

Posted in Random nothings, Sensory play

How does an older sibling deal with a special needs sibling

I get asked that question a lot and my answer is always the same – I do not know how I would have coped with Abby, without Sky. She might only be 2 years older than her, but she is such a mother hen to her little sister. She makes sure Abby does not get into things she should not – and trust me that is very very often. She makes sure Abby is safe when she is out of my sight. She makes sure Abby wipes  – long story but she has appointed herself as toilet police!

This morning our garden services arrived. I did not really expect them, so I was caught off guard. Any parent that deals with a child that is noise sensitive knows garden services are the pits. And noise sensitive autistic children really takes it bad. Not only is the noise crazy for them, but also having to deal with strangers in their space. Abby goes into total panic mode. She holds her ears, cries, runs, hides and she is shaking from pure fear.

She hold on to me for dear life and everything comes to a hold. The whole household goes into action to make sure she is okay.

So me being caught off guard, I had to run to open the gate for them. Take down wet washing I just put on the line. I was worried because now Abby is alone with Sky in the house. I get inside, run to her, just to find Sky (my FOUR year old) has taken her into their room. Closed the door. She could not find Abby’s earphones and phone to block the sound out, so she took her own phone that she HATES sharing, put it on full volume to block the noise from the machines out and is sitting on Abby’s bed, holding her.

I just cracked. I burst out in tears. I could not have asked for a better older sister for Abby than Sky. She really made this momma proud. Yeah for older siblings!

Ps, don’t be fooled into thinking that they get along. They are real siblings that fights about everything!

Posted in Activities for little ones, Homeschooling, Sensory play

Water Experiment for Toddlers

Yes, we do ‘do’ school, even if we don’t ‘go’ to school!! I get asked a lot of times so what do I teach my children.

So here is a day in the lives of toddler homeschoolers.

They stayed in bed until 10am. They were awake and they came out of their rooms to each grab a phone. They went back to bed watching “Word Party”. A Netflix original. They love it, especially the little one. I will post a decent review some time about it. But it is very cute and very helpful.

So they had their language lesson in bed.

Our theme for the week is water, so we then bottled some water beads that we will need for our lesson tomorrow. But that does not stop them from playing with them so long. So they had their sensory lesson.

We then did their science lesson. We made an experiment with water and what effect it has on different objects. They had to tell me before the time what they thought would be the effect on the object. Will it change, or will it stay the same.

We used:
Macaroni

Rice

Fruit Loops

Paper

Sugar

Bread.

We put each object in an empty yogurt container and covered it with water.

They then had to tell me if the water had any effect on it. We also came back to it half an hour later to see if anything changed. They loved that the sugar just disappeared. They both tasted the water.

They then asked if they could play ‘house’ with it. Resulting in some real messy play. They mixed up the bread and fruit loops with the paper. Making this weird gooey paper paste. YUK! But they did enjoy playing with it and seeing how the water changed the objects.

At the moment they are doing imaginary play by playing “magic show”. They have a hat and are pretending to pull magic things from the hat.

It has been a full day for these two. In between they played in the sand pit and had a race around the garden and learned how to pump up a inflatable pillow – learning how the air goes from the pump into the cushion.

 

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

Fake snow using only 2 ingredients

We are doing a Winter theme this week, because Winter has truly arrived in South Africa! Being a cold, wet day and the little one not feeling well, I decided to keep them busy with some fake snow. They loved playing it with it, they spread it out on the table and wrote in it. Well the older one did and the little one kept destroying what her sister made – that is basically our daily routine!

So how to make fake snow. I saw a few recipes but having limited things in the house and not planning on running around in the rain, I found a simple recipe. All you need is bicarb and water. Yes that is all!!!

You take bicarb (as much you want to use) and put one teaspoon of water at a time in the bowl. On 100g I used exactly 1 teaspoon of water. Just mix in in with a fork and you will get fluffy ‘snow’. It kept my kids busy for hours!

It’s the beginning of Winter and every little thing that we can use to entertain them is helpful at this stage. So go make some snow and get them busy.

PS. Great sensory play

Posted in Random nothings, Sensory play, SPD Tips

Pod Swing Review

So everybody on our SPD support group are raving about these pod swings. You don’t see a sensory room without one. So when I saw some on a sale, I got 2. I know the “science” behind it, but still was a bit skeptical. How can a bag hanging from the ceiling help? Well, it does!! We just had the garden services in and that usually cause huge amounts of chaos in this house. As soon as the first lawnmower starts Abby starts running, hides in her room and won’t come out from under her blanket. Today she got into her swing and stayed there for more than half of the cut. She did then get scared and came to sit with me on the couch. But that is a HUGE improvement. She found a safe place!! Thank GOODNESS!

Her sister on the other hand, needs a lot of input as well, so she is using it as a crazy swing. The amount of times I had to tell her to calm down on the thing in the past day, is crazy. She kicks and swings and goes wild. Which is also great, she is getting the input she needs. Both our girls as SPD, but totally different problem areas. Living with 2 girls under the age of 5 both with SPD and one with Autism is sometimes (okay always) chaos. So every single thing that we can do to bring some calm, we are doing. So is the pod swing worth it??

EVERY SINGLE CENT!!!

We are busy converting our whole home into a sensory room / area. So I will be posting more about that soon. Winter is coming in SA and every SPD fear the cold. Not only is it difficult to keep jackets and shoes on them, but also difficult keeping them busy. This mom is on a mission to make this Winter work.

 

Just some specs:

The pod swing can take up to 80kg.

It is attached to the roof. I will create a post to show how to install it soon.

It is sturdy and safe

It has an inflatable seat for comfort.