Tuesday, September 25, 2012

How to Lose 15 Pounds and 16 Inches in Three Weeks

We’ve all been tempted to try quick fix diets that promise big weight loss results in a short period of time. I’ve tried the Wild Rose detox, Sugar Busters diet, and South Beach diet. Add in Weight Watchers and Jenny Craig, and I can easily self-quality myself as a dieting expert. So, when I heard about yet another 3 week detox, of course I had to try it. ...Read more on iVillage Canada

Thursday, September 13, 2012

helping your child with autism make friends: matt & max.

This summer Max spent mornings with his junior respite worker, Matt. As part of working with Max, Matt wrote a weekly blog about his experience.

Here is Matt's take on how week 6 went:

With the pain of teething still hurting Max, he continued to try to hit and scratch me in frustration. However, an awesome thing happened when spent an afternoon at blueballoon - the clinic where Max goes for all of his therapy. At blueballoon, he was amazing - using full sentences, singing, matching pictures and he spoke so clearly. He was also full of smiles when we would play games there. He giggled a lot and it was a really positive experience with him. Also, his therapists gave me suggestions on how to deal with his scratching and pinching. The biggest thing I learned is to just ignore it and walk away - which was actually quite successful. They also suggested to sometimes tell Max I will take certain things away when he isn't behaving. This was slightly less successful but still worked. Using these tools led to less scratching by the end of the summer.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

autism in the classroom: questions from max's classmates.

As Max's Official Taxi Service Provider (MOTSP for short), I spend more time than most parents in Max's classroom. Every day at 12:30pm, I pick Max up to take him to therapy. The kids are usually sitting eating their lunches when I arrive. Max knows the schedule, so he is watching the door waiting for me. Last year the kids didn't seem to pay much attention to me - but this year, they are a much more curious bunch. It may be that there is a crop of new kids in Max's grade 1 class who are just getting used to Max and some of the things that are different about him.

One little girl in particular has a question for me everyday. Yesterday she asked "Where does Max go in the afternoon?". When I explained that Max goes to a different place to learn, sort of like a school, she followed up with "What does he learn there?". Fair question. How do I explain Behavioural therapy to a 6 year old? I responded "Well, he works on learning how to talk more, and how to play with friends". Not quite accurate, but I figured she would understand that. Today she asked me "Does Max's sister go to this school? Who is she?". I responded that yes, Max's little sister does go to this school and that she is in JK. I'm interested to see what question she has for me tomorrow.

I mentioned the questions being asked to Max's EA and she said that most of the kids accept Max for Max very quickly. The fact that he has someone in the class to help him, uses a different washroom, and gets to go on walks around the school when he needs a break quickly becomes normal. It's interesting that Max's classmates don't make much of the special treatment he gets. I really can't wait to hear what they have to say when he starts bringing his service dog to school with him in the spring. I think that might be the tipping point!

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

autism in the classroom: max's first day of grade one.

Max started grade one yesterday. I'm certain I was at least as stressed out about it as he was. Well, maybe I was more stressed out beforehand and he was more stressed out on the actual day. I didn't sleep a wink on Monday night. It wasn't that I thought anything bad would happen, it's just that I know how hard changes are on him. After having Max home with me all summer, it's a big transition for both of us.

To be fair, Max started getting ready for his move to grade one back in the spring. For the last month of school, Max's EA (he's had the same awesome EA since JK) took him on daily visits to his new teacher's room. He got to see where his new desk would be, his coat hook, and the washroom. He also spent time with his new teacher, a wonderful lady who is very excited to have Max in her room. He even has a social story about grade 1 that his EA made for him. He's a lucky kid to have such a great team supporting him at school.

This picture was taken in our driveway before we left for school. Max was happy all the way there, until we pulled up in our special parking spot - directly in front of a "no parking ever" sign. His EA came up to the car and when he saw her, his lower lip started to quiver. He refused to get out of the car, and I had to lift him out. Then he sat on the ground, his head in his hands. When it became clear he wasn't going to budge, we picked him up and carried him into the classroom.

And then he was fine.

He didn't even say goodbye to me. On day two, we pulled up to the school, he hopped out of the car, and went and stood in line with his class. I was lucky to get a "bye mommy" as he went inside. Good job my little rock star. I am SO proud of you!!