Cutest Blog

Sunday, August 29, 2010

The first day of school

John is doing pretty well. The first day of school he didn’t do anything according to his teacher, but I haven’t heard anything since then. At home, other then a few outbursts, he has been doing well. We had a huge fight about using the toilet, and he has been doing really well since then. He doesn’t want to loose all his video games and the computer for 24 hours again. He has to earn them each day by using the toilet. So far, so good. He and Daniel both had a rough day on Friday. They were up really late the night before because we had visitors. My fault, so I gave them a little leeway. Unfortunately, Mark and Eric were up late for the football game as well. I was really glad they all went to school that day. It would have been a grump-fest had they been home. I sent them all to bed early on Friday night. None of them protested.

Daniel is doing fabulously as always. He keeps going in my room to watch TV and destroying my bed, but other then that he is a sweetheart. He loved on Rory (his cousin). She was a little surprised, but the big surprise was that she could call him by name by the time they left (she is almost 2). She took the toileting doll with her. One toy out of the house and about a million to go.

Friday, August 13, 2010

the I-Pad and autism

My sister sent me this link to an article in the Seattle Weekly.

To me it was obvious that an I-Pad would be attractive to autistic children and I have long since thought that a computer would have more patience repeating thing the thousands of times a child with special needs might need to see and hear something then a live person.  It is also better at repeating itself exactly and being predictable.

An Autistic Conversation

John is having a hard time now that big brother Paul is home and school is out. He and I are having big fights about using the toilet, AGAIN! I am so-o-o tired of that fight. I called his YCAP teacher this morning and she told me that if he messes his pants I need to ground him from everything and make him stay in his room all day long and then the next day he has to use the toilet before he gets anything. I went to warn him, but he had already gone in his pants, so he is in his room all day throwing a fit. We fought it out on Monday as well. I am not a good fighter, and I hate having power struggles with my kids, but this is one I have to win for his own good and for everyone who lives with him. Sigh, he was doing so well for so long and now he has regressed again. I guess Chris leaving on his mission and Paul coming home has messed him up a bit. Once school starts again it will be easier, I just have to be mean until then and every weekend after that. He has definitely made life more difficult for me.

Daniel is doing great! During church last Sunday he was sitting at the end of the family next to some other members. She told me he was singing Camptown Races all through sacrament meeting. She thought it was hilarious.

That reminds me of a John story that happened at church.  We were switching classes and waiting in the hall for the other class to leave.  John's friend from pre-school walked by.  He is on the spectrum somewhere also but his parents haven't had him tested, just everyone who knows him recognizes that something is up.  Anyway, John said, "It's nice to see you, Noah."  Noah went to his mom who was standing nearby and said something to her.  I told John to try again because I didn't think Noah heard him.  Noah said that he had at the same time John was repeating himself, neither noticing that the other was talkin.  Then John said, "Can I come over sometime?"  Noah said, "Sure!"  I said, "I think we need to ask your mom first!"  His mom had gone on down the hall to somewhere else so John and Noah continued their conversation.  John showed Noah the picture he drew earlier of a computer screen and said, "This is Windows 7."  Noah said, "I have an x-box."  John said, "I drew a computer."  Noah said, "I play violent games."  John said, "I have a computer at home."  After I told Noah that we didn't allow John to play violet games, he said, "My dad watches me."  The he and John continued talking at each other...John talking about computers and Noah talking about x-box.  I found this obviously autistic exchange amusing.  They were both standing there looking at each other and taking turns talking but neither one of them was interested in what the other was saying.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

a “picnic” on the stair landing

John is home now and enjoying his freedom from school. He has been in a pretty good mood, too. We haven’t had a ton of fights. Just a couple. He’ll get grumpier as when he is not in school for a longer period time. As much as he hates going to school, the schedule really helps him.

Last night, I ended up being having to take John and Daniel with me to drop Mark off at band. There was a young man walking with a cooler down the road. I said, “That looks a like a band person.”  I figured Mark might know him so I asked. Mark said he did, so I forced Mark to ask him if he wanted a ride. The kid, named Alan, accepted. John asked Alan if he was coming for a sleepover. John became sleepover obsessed. He has been sleeping in Eric’s bed while he was away at a Boy Scout high adventure campout. Mark found John in Daniel’s bed last night. They were having a sleepover. Mark chased John out but he ended up in Paul/Chris' bed (depending on who is home from college at the time). Eric shooed him from Paul’s bed to his own. Silly John.

Along the same line, we drove by the baseball field/park where the Jr. High concert in the Park takes place. John remembered that we had a picnic there last year. He started asking about having a picnic, repeatedly.  I had washed blankets some old blankets, so they were sitting on the stairs waiting to be put away. I had John grab one and he and Daniel had a “picnic” on the stair landing. We had eaten dinner before we left, so they ate chips.

Daniel is his cute chubby self. He is getting a little stronger every week and becoming more hyper along with it. We tried to explain about Paul (who has been on an LDS mission for the last 2 years) coming home this week during Family Home Evening. He didn’t seem to understand. We couldn’t find the airplane picture for the calendar, so we put up a car picture and the birthday party picture to show that we would be happy that Paul came home. Daniel seemed oblivious until Wednesday morning. When I got up he said, “Mom, Mom,” jumping up and down and pointing at the “today” card. I said, “What is happening, today?” He said, “Wednesday.” I said, “Yes, and what is happening on Wednesday.” He pointed to the car. I said, “And what does that mean?” He said, “Paul drive home! Sic o’clock!” (He did understand the FHE stuff!) He looked at the clock. It was 8:30. He said, “It sic o’clock?” I explained That six o'clock is when the big hand is on the 12 and the little hand is on the six.  Then I told him that it was the big hand on the six, not the little hand, but he didn’t really understand very well. He sort of understands time, but not quite. I was afraid he would be asking every time a half hour rolled around, but he did all right. We actually got home at about 4:30 so we never had the problem of reaching 6:00. We thought we would get stuck in traffic, but we didn’t.  It was wonderful to see my oldest son again.  Daniel and John have followed him around the house and tried to get his attention and play with him.  Paul has been great.  He really missed us.

Monday, August 2, 2010

John Latest Story

John Strikes Again
By John Frame

Once upon a time, it was a superhero named Super John that saves the day from The Unthinkables.  First was Rock Brain trying to get Tommy stuck on an idea.  John's mommy says, "John, dinner!"  John was playing with his dog, Bart.  John says, "Here boy, get this one."  John imagined he used a rubber chicken.  John used one more toss.  It will be super far.


FYI-we don't have a dog.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

July 29, 2010 I played a short game with John and Daniel

I played a short game with John and Daniel. I closed my eyes and asked them if I could see them. They both said no. That means they understand that other people don’t see the same things they do. That is a big step. I had them close their eyes and said that my eyes were open. Could I see them? They both said yes. Wohoo! It is a step toward them understanding that we are separate people and see and think differently. It is something Autistic people have a hard time understanding. Later on Daniel closed his eyes, lay back in the recliner seat and hid his head behind the couch. I told him again my eyes were open. “Can mommy see you?” He answered, “No.” Oh well. Not completely there yet. I laughed and said, “Yes I can! I can see your purple shorts!” (He was wearing the Fielder PE shorts.) He said with annoyance, “Will you please stop it.” That is his favorite phrase lately. He says it a lot.

John is at summer school. He is having (according to his own report) bad days. His YCAP teacher is on vacation so he is pushing the limits to see what he can get away with. I think of it as a foreshadowing of things to come. I hope they can find someone who can handle him.

Daniel is bored out of his mind but enjoying PBS kids and Qubo. He is doing great at OT. His OT is retesting him now that she understands him a little better and can communicate what she needs from him better and he has made big strides. His hand strength, balance, grip and eye tracking are much better. He is still struggling with the tracking though. That is where you put your finger up and have his eyes follow it without moving your head. You have to hold his head, but he can do it a little. He looses focus a lot though. He can’t do it without someone holding his head though. Poor baby. I think learning this skill and strengthening those muscles will make reading a lot easier. I always thought he just didn’t understand what the doctor wanted but now I know now he really hasn’t been able to do the task. I feel a little guilty for not picking up on it, but I also realize that it was his disability with language that masked it so I don’t feel terrible about it.

July 22, 2010 “I soap"

John is back in school for the next 2 weeks. He is so much nicer when he goes to school. He doesn’t scream as much when he is home less and Mark and Eric are more willing to give him the computer when he has been gone all day. John is also going to camp with his YCAP teacher. She is doing a great job getting him to swim. She threw him in the deep end a couple of weeks ago and he was able to swim to the side. John said he was drowning, but I doubt it since I am sure she was watching him closely. On Monday, she took them to see the Movie despicable me because it was raining and, of course, the pools closed. I was surprised John went. He won’t go with us to the movies. He has gone swimming the last couple of days. He says it is at a “new pool” and that it has a trampoline beside it. He jumped on the trampoline. He is having a good time and learning a lot.

Daniel is loving OT and PT. I gave him a ½ hour warning that we were going and he immediately turned of the SP and started jumping up and down and saying “yeah!yeah!”. It is a lot of hard work for him though. He tells them, “I pretty tired.” And, one more cute thing. Last Sunday Eric brought Daniel and Mark home and beat us by a couple of minutes. It was raining cats and dogs so when I walked in the door Daniel was dancing around without a shirt. He said, “It raining pretty hard!” We responded that it was. He said, “I soap!” I was a little confused and thinking, “Huh? You want to get in the bath and soap up?” But John said, “Not soap. Soaked!” I laughed and laughed. No one else thought it was very funny but I guess my in head confusion and John figuring out what Daniel meant instead of me, made it hilarious to me. I’m still smiling at, “I soap.”

July 11, 2010 Breath in, Breath out

John is doing well. He was supposed to give the opening prayer during church but refused. DH said he didn’t do very well in class. John and DH had a fight about the prayer but John stuck to his guns and refused. At the end of primary he had calmed down enough that he gave the closing prayer instead. I was proud of him for calming down. He sat next to Daniel and played. The Chorister told me that Daniel and John both sang wonderfully and that they almost new all the words to Come Follow Me. Daniel's teacher (She sits next to Daniel holding her baby grandson every week. It keeps Daniel calm to play with the baby.) told me a story about John. She said that the baby had gotten a little fussy so John came over (walked past Daniel) and told the baby that he needed to calm down and go to sleep. Then John proceeded to pat and rub the babies back and sing a song from Sid the Science kid, Breath in, Breath out. I tell John to do that when he is really angry to help him calm down. I don’t usually sing it, but the words are the same. Daniel’s teacher said it was really cute.

As for Daniel, he is his happy self. He did physical therapy this week. The new therapist loved working with him. She called him cute and a very willing worker. She teaches the music in primary so she doesn’t get a lot of one on one with Daniel. It is amazing how Daniel affects everyone who works with him. As Paul said a couple of weeks ago…How can you not love Daniel! Paul said Daniel hasn’t changed at all. Other then being bigger, slightly (very slightly) more cautious and knowing bigger words he is pretty much the same as he was when Paul left.