A-Z Of Autism - C Is For...

So if you read last weeks B is For then you will know what all of this is about, if not here is a little recap. I'm a Mum of 3 autistic children and way back 13 years ago when my eldest was diagnosed I really struggled to find real-life info about autism. So here we have the A to Z of autism, I'm not a Doctor or health care professionals, these are just some words on what autism means for us. Each fortnight is the next letter of the alphabet, do head over and check out B (highlighted above) and let's get on with C!

Coordination

All 3 of my children have a distinct lack of coordination in one way or another. They are really clumsy, stairs are a problem, hopping, standing on one leg and riding a bike. My Dj is the one whos has the most problems with this as is in the process of being tested for dyspraxia. None of the children can ride a bike, the whole having to peddle, keep your balance and look where you are going is a little too much for them! Buttons are another challenge, zips are fine once attached to the zipper and shoelaces have always been a big NoNo!

CAHMs

I have spent most of the past 13 years in and out of CAHM's appointments. For those with no experience of CAHM's it stands for Child and adolescent mental health services. They are who you are sent to see on the diagnosis trail. We have seen psychologists and psychiatrists at CAHM's. It was also where we had the ADOS test done for all 3 of our children, the ADOS test is what is used to diagnose autism. 

Cooperation

This is a bone of contention in our house, whether it be cooperating with me or cooperating with school there is ALWAYS a problem. I have found with my 3 it's their way or no way and if they say they aren't doing something they aren't doing it, no amount of compromise can sway them. Some people have said I allow them too much freedom and should enforce them to cooperate with me, my answer to that is come and live in my house for a week and try that yourself, you will soon see it's not worth the hassle! If it's not a big deal we allow it, but there are some rules they now they have to follow.

Circadin

Out of my 3 ASD children 2 of them have been on Circadin and 1 of them still takes Circadin. Sleep has always been a challenge for my 3 and Circadon was prescribed to assist sleep. I had 1 who couldn't fall asleep and 1 who couldn't stay asleep. I would like to say you get used to the lack of sleep, but that's a lie!! Even taking circadian we don't get a full night, its very hit and miss, some families have great success with it, its very child dependant. 

Challenging

Having 3 on the spectrum is challenging, as they all have different needs. We had to get the main bedroom in the house separated to allow them to have a room of their own. They need their own space to chill and zone out. They have a wide range of challenging behaviours between them, but we are lucky that they are easily managed now they are older. In their younger days they became frustrated at not being able to express themselves, with age this has eased and they can better explaining and deal with their feelings. Not so much for Pops shes is the most challenging if the 3 and still screams, bites herself, shouts, spits and melts down sometimes.

Celebrations

These are tricky as they don't like fuss, the lack of routine surrounding celebrations is the main thing they dislike. We tend to keep things low key. For Christmas, the tree has to be up with the advent calendars come out and has to be down on the 26th. The eldest 2 like their presents in their room, being in the lounge with the whole family is too much, they like to take their time in peace with their gifts. Birthdays are of a similar stance, presents and cake allowed, but no balloons or banners and definitely no singing happy birthday!

Character

I love their individual characters, they all have their own little quirks. I am often asked if I wished they didn't have autism, and my hand on heart answer is no! Yes its hard sometimes, and it has been a long road, with a long road head! But autism is part of who they are and without autism, they wouldn't have the characters that they have now. 

Compulsive

Compulsive behaviour is one of the trickier aspects to live with. I have one who has a compulsion to chew, whether that be paper, ring pulls and plastic lids, his room can always be found to be full of chewed up bits. This has resulted in him losing 2 teeth due to damage from chewing things he shouldn't. We have tried chewy replacements to no avail. I have another who has short compulsions and obsessions on different things. This can be tv shows, particular foods and even a certain pen even.

So these are my C's for this section, can you relate to any of my C's? Is there any not there that you would add to the list?

Thanks For Reading

Mandy


Christmas Gifts From Smiggle

We LOVE Smiggle and whenever we go past in town the children insist on dragging me inside. I can't blame them the sea of neon colour is a kids dream and I know I would have loved it when I was little. Just before we headed into lockdown 2.0 Smiggle were sending us a gift card so we could go down to one of their stores and pick out some Christmas gifts to feature in our gift guide. Sadly the stores are now closed but lucky for us and you Smiggle allow you to order online for home delivery. So we headed to the Christmas section on the website and picked out some items.

I loved this DIY drink bottle, all the children have to take their own drinks bottles into school at the moment. So this bottle appealed as they can really make their bottle individual and it won't get mixed up with all the other children's bottles. This bottle is available in 2 styles and costs £15.

With 4 children in the house, it gets noisy, then when you factor in the noise from their Ipads its gets even louder! I have been looking for a fun pair of headphones for Spud for a while and these shark inspired ones are just the thing. The flex headphones are available in 3 different colourways and cost £24.

I love this little treats beauty gift pack and thought it would be perfect for my niece, it comes ready gift boxed so perfect for wrapping straight up. The set costs £15 and contains 3 scented lip balms in raspberry, blueberry and grape flavour. You also get a silicone 3d purse in the shape of a cupcake, it's the perfect size to store the lip balms in.

Spud is always doodling so I had to grab a sketchbook for him, you can get these block sketchbooks in a whole host of colours. The 50 page plain sketchbook is 19cmx19cm so it the perfect size for putting in their bag on their travels. This camo design sketchbook is just £5 so a great stocking filler.

When you walk into any Smiggle store you are met by a sea of pens and pencils on the side wall, it's my kiddos favourite part of the shop, mine too if I am honest. I picked up a few styles for Spuds stocking, the styling mechanical pencils are available in 5 styles and are priced at £1.50 each. The cola pencils come with an interchangeable eraser and are scented, also priced at £1.50

I thought seen an I got Pops a drinks bottle I had better get one for Spud, he would be fuming if she got a Smiggle bottle and he didn't! This spritz bottle is perfect for sports thanks to the misting function, perfect for cooling down. The flip spout means it keeps leak-free on the go, it holds a massive 700mls of fluid. This is available in 4 colourways and is priced at £15.

I am really pleased with my choices from Smiggle and I know the kiddie will be too, if you want to head over and shop now there are some fab deals available online like spend £35 and get 25% off or spend £50 and get 30% off but hurry this offer ends on Tuesday.

Thanks For Reading

Mandy

Christmas Baking With Britain Loves Baking

Britain Loves Baking is the new home of family baking. Whether you’ve recently discovered the joys of baking or are an accomplished baker looking for new ideas for baking, they provide all the ambient and dry ingredients that you need to create the perfect sweet treats or yummy bread in one baking box. Their baking boxes are delivered directly to your door, and there’s no charge for delivery in Mainland UK! They take all the fuss out of finding that perfect bread or cake recipe – and then the hassle of sourcing all the ingredients. They offer a selection of baking boxes created by their very own Greg The Baker, ranging from a ‘3 Recipe Tasting Box’ – ideal for those new to baking, to a chocalicious ‘Chocolate Taster Box’ crammed full of indulgent chocolate bakes. All their ingredients are of the very finest quality and the recipe instructions are easy to follow. So you don’t need to worry if you can’t tell the difference between folding, mixing and creaming! Myself and the children love a bot of baking and can often be found in the kitchen whipping up their favourite banana loaf! We were sent a few different boxes to give a try and get us excited for some Christmas baking this year.
The Afternoon Tea Box gives you the choice of a trip to the restaurant or you can bake at home and host your own traditional British afternoon tea party at your home. The Small Afternoon Tea Box for 2-3 guests or Big Afternoon Baking kits are ideal for up to six guests. The box included all the ingredients you need and step-by-step recipes that are so easy to follow that even those who are new to home baking will have no problem creating tasty treats.
The children loved getting creative with the icing and Christmas decorations on the orange and chocolate cakes they helped make. I say helped loosely when in essence I did all the hard work and they licked the spoon!! I mean whats baking with Mum if you can't lick the spoon afterwards. They helped with the scones and teacakes and were fascinated watching the teacake batter rise as it proved.
We bought a cake stand to present their afternoon tea on and they loved it. Ironically we actually did all of this on Halloween!! Seen as we couldn't do what we normally would with family it was a welcome distraction. We got straight on with making our gingerbread fudge and chocolate house when we were done with the baking.
This chocolate and ginger fudge is so easy to make and it keeps well so you can enjoy it over the festive season. Studded with chunks of spicy stem ginger, this indulgent chocolate fudge is the perfect gift for anyone with a sweet tooth and packaged up will make a fab gift for someone this festive season. The kids really enjoyed the Christmas chocolate house kit, it was right up their street. They really went to town with their decorations, maybe next time a little more icing is required on our part as some of our roof fell off!! The chocolate tasted divine all the same.
We really enjoyed these fab kits from Britain loves baking and think they would make a great gift this Christmas. No matter if they are a novice baker or a fab baker they will love these kits. Make sure you check out the Christmas section on the website and see the range of fab gifting options available.
Thanks For Reading
Mandy
xx

Win A Set Of Wannabees Books

 

Wannabes is created by 2 working Mums passionate about promoting Role Play for the older child. They both had children that wanted to continue the ‘lets pretend’ experience without the stigma of it being deemed ‘babyish’ by their peers. They wanted to take role play to the next level by feeling that they were playing ‘for real’. When one of their daughters asked for a “grown up Teachers pack just like the one that they use in school” they set about designing one from scratch. From there, orders started to flood in from friends and family as there wasn’t anything like it available on the market and it was then that, over a cuppa in a supermarket café, they decided to take the plunge and look to offer their packs to the wider market. They now have 3 packs available I want to be a teacher, I want to be a cafe owner and I want to be a Doctor. The team over at Wannabees have offered the full set of books to one of my readers.

For your chance to win just enter via the rafflecopter widget below.

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3. Winner will be contacted via email and has 28 days to respond to winning email before a new winner is selected
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