Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas!

Happy Holiday's! Wishing you peace and joy in the New Year:)

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Gifts of Hope

Hello! I know, it's been a long time since I've updated. Now the holiday's are upon us and I wanted to share some thoughts. Lowell has continued to make steady progress. Although, in the last few weeks things have regressed a bit as he has had a bad cold. He has become *very* obsessive lately, it seems like as a self-soothing tactic. This has worn on our patience at home, especially as we have all been passing around a cold all month. We are hoping he will enjoy some of his Christmas gifts and play with those toys, rather than obsess on extension cords and karoke machines:)On a positive note, we got the most delightful gifts from Lowell's therapists at St. David's today. The music therapist made a "best of" cd made up of the music she uses while working with the kids, for us to play at home. One of the lead teachers gave us the book, "Changed by a Child" by Barbara Gill. The other lead teacher made an absolutely *wonderful* picture book filled with pictures of Lowell at the Autism Day Treatment program. It brought tears to my eyes as I paged through it, looking at our little guy and all the hard work they are all doing there. What amazing help he is receiving!! The snow ornament Lowell made himself:) The stuffed animal is from a child that receives services at St. David's that wanted to use his Bat Mitzvah money to buy toys for other kids. I was very moved by these gifts and my heart is full of appreciation and joy.
I was also able to spread a little joy myself to my "special mom" friends. It's a group of women that I hang out with that all have little boys the same age on the Autism spectrum. We get together once a month for a mom's night out and offer so much support and hope to one another. I feel so blessed to have them as friends. I made each woman a HOPE sign to hang in their home to remember that we have each other and we have hope. That says it all! Happy Holiday's to you and yours:)

Friday, December 01, 2006

December update

Lots to catch up on with Lowell. He has been making great progress recently in his Autism Day Treatment program at St. David's. He's become much more social and seems to be more in control of his body. We attribute some of this to him (finally) getting into a really good sleep pattern. He's consistently over the last 10 days or so slept until around 6:30 am. Yeeha!!! He has been less irritable and obsessive, probably from being well rested:)

As you can see here, he loves the new door mirror. He likes looking at himself counting on his fingers and he likes to put on his coat, shoes, and hat while looking at himself (above). He really wants to learn how to tie his own shoes. We'll see!

Fabulous update from his music therapist today said:

Lowell really shined with turn taking skills this week. He imitates turn taking language and spontaneously requested turn. He passes instruments to peers with cues and occassionally independently. He is also more interested in watching peers have turns:)

His occupational therapist gave us a list of good gift ideas. For those of you that read this that have Autistic kids, I thought it may be helpful. Anyone else have good gift ideas? I'd love to hear them.

*pillows- the soft, silky pillows that are filled with tiny pellets. They work great for catching and tossing. *bucket or children's basketball hoop *bath toys- squirters, cups for pouring, strainers, etc. (works on hand development and strengthening) *scissors *crayons- better than markers for hand development *whistles, blowers, etc.- good for oral development and calming *squishballs, Kooshballs * bean bags * playdoh, cookie cutters, rolling pin *interlocking, connecting building sets- promote coordination of both hands *Cool Bananas- CD by Genevieve Jereb. Children's songs played slightly slower pace. Can be found at *dolls with clothes- work on dressing doll, putting on shoes, feeding, etc. *exercise/therapy ball

Also, the cover of Newsweek magazine, Nov. 27th issue is What happens when they grow up? Click on the underlined words and you'll get the link to the full text article. Pretty interesting stuff!