Saturday, October 1, 2011

Into Routines

Wow, it's been well over a month since I posted last.  I knew it had been a while, but it's been a month and a half.  I guess I need to start planning my blog posts and doing this more.  Things have been hectic here, between getting Kid Jedi ready for back to school, heading back to subbing for me and still looking for a full-time job, and, well, the normal things that happen with an Aspie in your life.

So, we've been back to school/work for almost a month now and Kid Jedi is getting into a routine, doing well with his homework, not calling out as much in class now and FINALLY listening to his teacher, so he's adjusted.  The wonderful thing about having a child with Asperger's is you know the beginning of each school year is going to be rough, and I don't mean you have to start getting them up earlier and they fight you and you have to settle into routines, I mean you get notes home that your child is talking when the class is told to do something silently and calling out in class and talking and not listening to directions and talking.  I find that as much as teachers are really starting to get to know about Asperger's, ADHD and ASDs, they still have a hard time understanding that as long as they stick with their routine, these kids will figure out the new routine and comply, it is all about rules after all.  They may need some modifications, like being sent on errands to get a break, or a more frequent reward system at the beginning of the school year, but they will work it out.

And Kid Jedi did, after having to stay in at recess one day because of the one day that he called out so many times he lost 2 sticks, then decided that when the class was told to get up silently from the rug to go back to their seats was the time to say hello to his teacher and lost another stick.  He tests, all kids do, but a neurotypical child knows when to stop, he tests boundaries until they break, or almost do then he becomes the rule follower who will tell his classmates that they are doing something wrong, and need to be reminded that he needs to worry about himself or he'll get in trouble.

The funny thing is, he loves school, loves his teacher, and loves his aide, but the beginning of school is always an adventure.  We're to the point now where he is getting his reward every day, and now his Behavior Therapist is looking at his other behaviors to help him that calling out is under control (they fixed this by giving him M&M's), they are working on him picking his nose which I really wish them luck on, I've been trying to get rid of this habit since it started at 4!!

We'll see...

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

My not so great day

I won't be going into this a lot, but I did not have a good day today.  Kid Jedi and I were down the shore the end of last week, I came home on Sunday so I could clean his room.  I wound up with 3 bags of clothes to donate to VVA, and 2 bags that I put aside for friends.  Today I went through books.  I've been applying for jobs too, 4 yesterday, 2 today...not bad so far, right.

Well, I took a break around 3:30 to do some laundry, and, well my dryer died.  And, of course with me being out of work and all, things are really tight here, so no new dryer is on the horizon.  The hubster checked it out and it's not getting fixed, so we are out a dryer...fortunately my in-laws offered up their washer/dryer for us to come over and use, so I'll be doing laundry once a week instead of daily or I'll be hanging everything and using my iron a lot (little secret, I actually like ironing).

Well, in the midst of all this I got a call from my Mom that my aunt passed away, really my great aunt and she's been sick, but it doesn't make it any easier.

Oh, and to top it off, I have sinus my ear!  So, I took an allergy pill and will probably not make my blogging class tonight, but at least I won't feel like I'm being stabbed in the ear.  

Now, I'm off to knit Kid Jedi some mittens for the winter.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Dancing with my Favorite Aunt

Kid Jedi didn't want his picture taken at all this day, but when he's dancing with his favorite aunt...

Check out other Wordless Wednesday pictures at 5MFM.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

What I've Been Making

So, in addition to the Vacation Bible Schools that we've been attending, I've been letting my creativity shine...well, I had to make some gifts anyway.  The week in between our two VBS weeks I had a baby shower for a someone from church and made her this blanket and burpie set

and this knit bunny.

The next day we had a wedding, I made these coasters for...

this beautiful couple (my cousin and her new husband).

And then this past Sunday, I had a shower for one of my friends for her third child.  I made her this monkey lovey,

this burpie and blanket set,

and this knit bunny.
 I'm taking a few days off of creating, but my next project is a change wallet for Kid Jedi made out of a recycled juice pouch.

Monday, August 1, 2011


This summer we went to 2 VBS weeks, 2 different churches, 2 different styles/curricula, ONE message.  The first VBS was 2 weeks ago at a friend's church.  Kid Jedi loved it...he's still singing the songs from it (which is saying something because he doesn't remember songs).

This is our first VBS, their theme was "Backstage with the Bible".  The kids learned the 10 Commandments, that God's grace and Jesus' sacrifice are what saves us.  And they sang.  The program has a Karaoke part, and it was a huge success.


Learning a Bible verse
Our second VBS at our church, New Beginnings Bible Fellowship Church, our theme was Wet 'n Wild Week, the kids learned about Jonah and the Whale, and how we should be obedient to God's commandments, do what He asks of us and do it willingly and with a happy heart.
Pastor Dan as Jonah
Kid Jedi with his class
We took pics of all the kids, Kid Jedi looks less than thrilled.
And as we do each year we had a fundraiser, this year instead of weighing the money, the kids sunk boats (the boys won that part, but the girls brought in more money).  This year the funds went with missionaries we support, the Gambrills and will help fund their work in Haiti through BCM International.

Sinking some boats...the trick is to put all the coins in the front.
Kid Jedi had a great time at both.  I'm glad they are over...they were both in the evening and it makes for a long day, especially when I was doing work for our VBS.  God is good!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Summer's here!

So, it's summer time...we've been home for  3-1/2 weeks.  I'm waiting to hear if I'm eligible for Unemployment because I worked at a school.  I'm waiting to hear about a great job that I had a second interview for last week (and applying for other jobs). Kid Jedi spent a week with my parents a couple of weeks ago and didn't want to come home.  So now, we are trying to get into some routine where I can do job searches, Kid Jedi can do summer reinforcement work (and reading) and we can get some of our house decluttered...maybe for a Yard Sale.

I'm trying to catch up on some book reviews on my other blog.  I have 4 more to do and am finishing up a book with my son which will add another one.  I'm a little better at reading than I am at writing the reviews.

We just got done a great VBS last night at a friend's church and we have another one at our church coming up the last week in July.

Hopefully we'll be able to settle down soon and enjoy a little bit of summer.

So, how's your summer going?

Saturday, May 7, 2011

A New Label

So, it has been a really, really long week.  Kid Jedi went back to school on Monday after being off for a week (I did too, well, to work).  He had a pretty good week, except for Wednesday which was the WORST day in a long time.  On Tuesday though, we had his Neurologist appointment to see if we could get some more answers about his behavior.  As you may, or may not, know, Kid Jedi was diagnosed with ADHD combined type last September, check it out here.  Well we had noticed changes in his behavior starting the end of Kindergarten, but even more so over the winter this year, so we made the Neurologist appointment (I know I wrote about this before, but I love repeating myself...just ask my husband who has heard the same family stories about a million times each).  Anyway, we walked out with an Asperger's diagnosis, no ADHD on Tuesday within 1-1/2 hours from when our appointment was.  No surprise.

What I have found surprising though is how tough this is for me.  We went into this appointment figuring this is what we would wind up with as a diagnosis, but over the last couple of days, it's really been an overwhelming thought.  I guess it's one thing to look into the possibility of something as a diagnosis, it's another looking at living with it for the rest of your life.  So, I'm doing lots of research, making a list of everyone, friends, family, etc that I can call and get help from and gearing up to help Kid Jedi be the best Kid Jedi he can be!

Check out some more great blogs over here at No Ordinary Blog Hop.

Friday, April 29, 2011

The fun of family holidays

So yesterday last week ( I started this on Monday, but...well, you know) we celebrated the Resurrection of our Lord, Jesus Christ.  And in good American fashion, we went to church (we do that every week though) then had a family dinner.  This year was a little different first off, Kid Jedi wanted to do cascarones, we do these every-other year when we have Easter at our house, but he really wanted to do them this year, so we made some cascarones.

Kid Jedi and Aunt A dying eggs
Cascarones before filling with confetti and sealing
(in other words, dyed egg shells)

Ok, so I totally forgot to take a picture of the cascarones finished, but before being smashed over everyone's heads.  But just picture the above egg shells with tissue paper glued over the shells.  Got it...that's what they looked like!

We went to my wonderful husband's Aunt & Uncle's house for dinner.  Kid Jedi is the youngest in our family, on both sides.  On my husband's side, the next oldest is Kid Jedi's cousin Z who is 3-1/2 years older than him, which at 7 and 10 going on 11 is a HUGE difference, but he's still really good with Kid Jedi, which is saying a lot.  My husband's cousin P who is only a year older than Z, well not so good with Kid Jedi.  Now I know, believe me I know that my son is not always easy to get along with.  Any Special Needs kid needs tolerance and a whole lot of patience.  P doesn't have either, and he thinks that because Kid Jedi still has meltdowns (he had 2 on Sunday, one was because P didn't want Kid Jedi playing with him & Z) he's annoying, and it seems he thinks he's unintelligent too.

Well, the unintelligent we may have changed his mind on because the boys played a board game that involved putting together a skeleton by spinning a spinner, and P was sure that Kid Jedi would have a hard time because he did at his age...nope, Kid Jedi did great!

Anyway, we wound up having a great Easter, Kid Jedi could care less what P thinks about him as long as he gets to play with the boys, and hopefully by the birthdays this summer we'll have a better diagnosis and some answers to help out Kid Jedi & get some understanding.

Here are some pictures of cascarones fun!  Then check out some other great blogs on No Ordinary Blog Hop!

Z and my husband cracking cascarones over each other's heads

Kid Jedi going after P

Kid Jedi getting his Dad

Z & my husband finally got P

Monday, April 11, 2011

How to work out stress...or why he has wet shirts

This time of year seems to be the most difficult for all students, they've been cooped up inside, they haven't had outdoor recess in months and though it's finally, usually, warming up, the rain has started.  Add to that the fact that March has few, if any, days off from school (and Easter isn't until the END of April this year) and the kids are going CRAZY!

For a child with special needs, it's even worse.  They react to how the other students are acting and that makes their stress level (and behaviors) go up...a lot.

At our house, Kid Jedi is acting up more.  He's not listening, he's having a difficult time following directions and he's chewing on the sleeves and necks of his shirts.  Now the chewing on shirts is a common thing in our home, he says it's to exercise his jaw (or teeth depending upon the day), but this time of year it gets a lot worse, and this year is worse than last year.  One day a couple of weeks ago, he came home with a different shirt on than the one we sent him in to school.  And yet another one was in his backpack, so he went through 2 shirts, and the one he came home in was really wet too.

In some cases, you could send your child to school with a chewy, or even have the provision for chewing gum added to your child's 504 or IEP.  But a chewy is too conspicuous in a mainstream classroom, and our concern with one that goes on the end of a pencil is that Kid Jedi would then chew on erasers.  Gum is something that Kid Jedi has absolutely no interest in chewing (I guess his shirts taste better).

It would be easy to just have him wear short-sleeved shirts if, like last year, it was just the sleeves that he chewed on, but with him chewing on the neckline or buttons on his shirt too, it isn't as easily remedied.  We do a lot of redirection, but as soon as he stops, he starts all over again.  We do understand that this is really a sensory and stress issue and that First Grade is a lot more difficult than Kindergarten, but I can't afford him ruining all his shirts.

Well, we'll either find a solution, or Kid Jedi will be wearing the same few shirts to school every day until he stops chewing on them.  Oh, and his aide has already banned one shirt because of how much he chewed on it!

Check out what other bloggers are up to:

Monday, March 14, 2011

It's The Little Things

As a parent of a special needs child, it's not the big things that make my son special, it's the little ones.  It's not that he's Legos, Pokemon & Star Wars like his friends, it's that he can tell you every detail about them.  He's home sick today and playing Pokemon White on his DSi, we are spending the time looking up all the different types of Pokemon to see what their strengths are and their weaknesses.  Not just the ones that he has, but all of them.

It's not that he gets upset when he doesn't get to share his idea on communication during the Children's message at church because he's in the bathroom, it's that he announces this to the whole congregation!

A special needs child is just like a regular child just more.  He's more lovable, more loving, more honest, more playful, more excitable, more excited, more interested...just more.

I can say one thing, I wouldn't have Kid Jedi any other way!!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

New symptoms, new doctors, possibly new diagnosis

We've been going through some issues here...well, at least we're facing the issues.  I'm not really even sure they should be called issues, more like ways of life.  As we all know, Kid Jedi was diagnosed last September with ADHD.  Well, at the time, our wonderful doctor went over the lay of the land as far as ADHD and ASD go... basically ADHD is one step, maybe not even a step, off of the Autism Spectrum.  And as far as Kid Jedi is concerned, he kind of teetered on that step, she felt he fell just to the ADHD side because he made friends...doesn't that just give you the warm fuzzies.  Well, 1 year and 5, almost 6, months later and the hyperactivity has slowed (not gone away, but slowed) and we're seeing more of Kid Jedi's true personality come through, and it's a great personality.

The problem is, and there always is a problem with a Special Needs child, that as the ADHD symptoms are coming under control, we are seeing how he really doesn't get social cues from anyone, he's overly obsessed with certain subjects, he can't look you in the eye (and he really tries), he has routines he has to follow, and most significantly, he doesn't understand when other kids aren't being nice to him yet he still wants to play with them.

That all being said, I have been asked recently by many friends and family members if I was sure that Kid Jedi didn't have Asperger's.  I had friends who said that there was a high chance that he would eventually wind up with an Asperger's diagnosis from the beginning, but I think the one that really got me was my cousin who has a not so little boy (he's in college) with Asperger's and as I was telling her about the issues Kid Jedi has, she repeatedly asked if I was sure he wasn't an Aspie...then came the friend from HS that I "met" on Facebook, and she was telling me about her son who was diagnosed with ADHD, then it got changed to Asperger's.  

All this time, we had been concerned about Kid Jedi's OCD-ish tendencies.  Then came the slap in the face.  I was reading The Best Kind of Different by Shonda Schilling (I picked it up because it was about Asperger's and we were starting to suspect this a lot).  As I read the Foreward by the doctor that diagnosed their son, Grant, I kept saying to myself, that's Kid Jedi, that's my son.  Needless to say I called the pediatrician on Monday to get a recommendation and we now have an appointment with a Neurologist on May 3.

Going into this figuring that he will wind up this diagnosis helps, but I know it's going to mean a lot of work with us, but it will be good knowing what we are dealing with no matter what comes back.  So now we get to go through the almost 2 month waiting period (which is much better than the standard 3-4 months that most people in this area are facing).

Head on over to No Ordinary Blog Hop to see what's going on with other bloggers

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Lowe's Build and Grow Clinic

There's a free Build and Grow Clinic at your local Lowe's this Saturday at 10:00 AM.  This week's project is a ball toss game:
As always, it's free, just head over to Lowe's and sign up.  The kiddos even get a free apron and goggles, and a patch for completing the project.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Toy Organization...or the Lego Collection that Took Over the World.

We are once again faced with the daunting challenge of organizing Kid Jedi's toys.  We are in the process of doing the usual get rid of things he's way too old for, pack away some things that he likes but doesn't play with so we can rotate things around in a few months...but then we have the Lego brick issue, you may think that your child has a lot of Legos, but I can honesty, without exaggeration state that Kid Jedi has thousands of Lego bricks, some in kits, some loose, they overwhelm me sometimes.

This is a picture of one of his Lego shelves.

He has 3 shelves, and that's from September, not including the Lavatraz set he earned at $2 a day on his behavior plan, or the sets he received for Christmas...or the sets he'll be getting for his birthday on Saturday.  Now, if it was just the sets, it wouldn't be that bad, but we also have 2 6-drawer craft carts with loose Legos in them, and a hardware sorter (the ones for nails, screws, etc.) with just his minifigures.

So, to tackle the Lego infestation is a whole other experience from just sorting toys because we can't put them away, he plays with them, he takes the kits apart, makes new things, maybe puts them back into kits...gets into fights with his father about them not being together.  He's very creative, and to be honest he's really good with his Legos, they give him a wonderful outlet and since he wants to be an engineer, it's kind of job training. So, I guess we're off to find yet another storage system for the Legos that better suits the growing collection we have.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Top 10 pieces of advice for the next generation

So, I follow the Women of Faith blogs and Anita Renfroe posted a Top 10 list of things to pass on to next generations...since I have cousins who are starting to plan weddings, and the rest of their lives, I figured I'd participate too.

1. Follow your heart, it knows better than your brain sometimes.
2.  Even if you don't believe in God, He believes in you, so PRAY!
3.  Listen to your Mom, you may not like what she has to say, but she's been there and only wants you to be happy and successful.
4.  If both of you are working, live on one paycheck and save the rest.
5.  Take time for yourself, even after you have and they will be better for it.
6.  Choose your friends carefully, they are the family you choose and should be a positive force in your life.
7.  Take care of yourself, body, mind and soul!
8.  When making a decision, weigh your options, make a decision and never look back.
9.  Live like there's no tomorrow, because sometimes there isn't.
10.  Love with all your heart, the more you love someone, the more your capacity to love.

I know a lot of this has to do with love and family, but I really think that our lives should focus on God, and family.

Check out other Top Ten lists at Women of Faith.

Lowe's Build and Grow Clinic

 This Saturday, January 8, 2011, head on over to your local Lowe's with the kiddos and build this Game Box.  Kid Jedi loves going to the workshops, they are a little loud, so if you have a child with sensory issues related to sound, be forewarned, but if you sign up on the website, you should be able to just pick it up and build it at home.  The workshop is from 10AM - 11AM, and the kids get an apron and goggles, and a patch to put on their apron when they are done (pick up some liquid stitch, sewing them on is a pain).

Oh, and the BEST part about these building clinics...THEY ARE FREE!!!