Sunday, January 26, 2014


I would like for my kid with ASD to join us for sibling performances and sporting events. The last 'first' was a disaster. We failed to preview an event without her and we walked into a a sensory nightmare. We didn't anticipate our son's football game being so chaotic and noisy. The private school brings speakers and music to blast ('blast' is an understatement) at the football game, and finding an area safe from the noise assault proved difficult when my child was dysregulated by the people and the noise.
I attended my first ever winter guard show this weekend. I was able to preview it without my sensory-sensitive kid. I am not sure my sensory-sensitive kid will be able to tolerate the crowd and the noise. The music that accompanies the guard routines is extremely loud. The gym is stuffy and crowded with people. I'm not sure ear plugs or noise canceling headphones are enough to combat the sensory overload of a winter guard competition. At least, this time, I was able to scout the situation before attempting to take the girl along to a show.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Winter Guard

My marching band kid, an amazing sibling of a kid on the autism spectrum, is participating in winter guard again this year.
The instructors have provided a safe place to try a new activity (she's never danced and yet she wanted to participate in winter guard) and they have provided excellent instruction, allowing her to leave her comfort zone and take the risks involved in learning new skills in a new activity. The instructors are wonderful guides and teachers and I am grateful for them. I learn from them as they provide opportunities for students to walk into uncertainty to try something brand new. Watching them helps me intervene with the kid with autism.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Scaffolding on the Ice Again

New skating coach - first lesson this week.

An observation: My girl dislikes holding up her arms for skating. She's always disliked it. Why? Here's what I think: Her low core tone is a factor that makes holding those arms up a challenge. Her arms and core tire easily. Additionally, she has to actively *think* about holding her arms up and that takes away thinking space from other skating skills. And when she does try, she has proprioceptive challenges - knowing where her body is in space. She may think she is holding her arms up high, but she's not. Coach E. impressed me by emphasizing proper arm positions and scaffolding the concept for my girl. Instead of one arm up and the other limp/passive, my girl was trying to raise the other arm - so challenging for her - and doing it for long (for her) periods of time on the ice. No, the other arm wasn't up high enough, but she was trying - that arm was actively participating. My jaw hit the floor a few times today.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Honor Band #1 of 2014

Congrats to an amazing sibling for making the state's regional honor band this year!

Friday, January 10, 2014

The Crochet Boa

My aunt taught me to crochet when I was a child. I have fond memories of the two of us sitting side by side in a swing in the back yard as she taught me to single and double chain. I haven't crocheted since I was a child. I never learned any other stitches. I discovered an online pattern for a cute corkscrew scarf that uses the stitches that my aunt taught me. I just finished a custom scarf for one of my children. Eldest designed the length and width and chose the camo yarn. What a sweet way to remember my aunt! I miss her.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Meet Jack

Before Christmas, my daughter came home from a homeschool co-op science session with a caterpillar that she named Jack. This week, he changed quite a bit.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Books & Puzzles

Today, I've been reading a book about Temple Grandin to my gal as she puts together an Impossipuzzle.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Sensory Overload

I spent four plus hours in a waiting room at the auto dealership today (the service department forgot I was there). I have a lot of sympathy for my sensory kid right now.
The big screen TV was blaring (first football, then "Maury", then ESPN, then a show about tornados - ugh, ugh, ugh, ugh!), an 80's hard rock music radio station was blaring on the speaker in the ceiling, and an employee in that office just past the corner kept talking to people on a speakerphone.

I need a sensory break.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Loose Change

What do you do with loose change? I began keeping an inexpensive plastic container near my laundry area to hold loose change from pockets and moving it to the car for an occasional order of french fries or a coke in a drive through.
The plastic container is not the best thing for the car. It rolls around out of reach.

While shopping for Christmas last month, I spotted a problem solver. It was heavily discounted and I had a coupon, too, a Totes auto coin counter that fits into the cup holder of your car. (Amazon has them here.)

Small steps in organization. I can leave the plastic container near the laundry area and the coin counter in a cup holder in the car. Yay, me!

Friday, January 3, 2014

Get Excited About Math!

Aut-2-Be-Home in Carolina's, Tammy Glaser has created a new blog aimed at making math exciting for us grown-ups. She invites you to check it out:

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