Friday, January 31, 2014

Rock Sledding

This evening Sebastian dropped his helmet and it hit his lip. He screamed out in pain. This kid can scream. We were in his room when this happened. I thought he had bit his tongue. Judah came running in from the living room. He was very concerned. He pointed to Sebastian & looked at me saying, "Ouch". He wanted me to kiss Sebastian's "ouch", so I did. Sebastian had stopped screaming but was still hurting. Judah touched Sebastian's lip a few times and then held his arm to Sebastian's forehead a few times (taking his temperature). I asked Judah if he wanted to give Sebastian a hug, and he hugged him. Judah had a look of huge concern the entire time. He had the same look tonight when I opened the bath drain while Willow was still in the tub. Usually he LEAPS out of the tub if I put my hand anywhere near the bath drain. He panicked when I opened the drain while Willow was still in the tub. He started screaming, "Wait! Wait!!", while trying to pull her out to safety. Willow sat comfortably in the water, smiling. I am pretty sure he believes that the bath drain can suck people down with the water. He probably thinks I am the devil for opening the man-eating drain with my baby in the tub.

Judah & Willow had a long bath, both refusing to get out. At one point Judah was standing up with his bottom near Willow's face. Willow said, "Judah! Don't poop on me!!" hahahaaa This morning I redirected Sebastian to get dressed a few times. After my final attempt at redirecting him, Willow looked at him and said, "Sebastian! Dressed!!" She's been really loving with Pixie the last 2 days. She hugs her & lets Pixie go so far as to lick her mouth. When Willow was in the tub tonight she pretended to be a dog, perched on all fours with her tongue sticking out, barking. I tried to make her laugh, but she was very serious about being a dog. She did this for an unusually long time.. it started to get awkward!

Sebastian was making inventions in the garage while the other 2 kids bathed. He was stacking strollers and ride-ons. He was basically trying to create a carriage for himself that he expected me to parade around the garage. He got one idea to work. Then he wanted to put Willow & Judah on his stack of large, wheeled toys. I had to shut down his factory at that juncture.

I was just on Facebook reading a post a friend wrote. She is looking for a personal aide for her autistic son. WESD gives him 2 half days (shocker). Like Judah, communication is a huge mountain for him to climb. She knows that her son needs more than 2 half days a week. Their solution to that was to put him in a daycare/"preschool" 2 more days out of the week. The daycare (not a place I'm fond of by the way) put him in the nursery with the babies - he's 4. They will not put him with his age group because he is not potty-trained (for lack of a more humane word). Apparently the only way to get around this is for her to HIRE a personal aide for her son. This aide would stay with him at preschool. His/her entire job would probably be to take this boy to the bathroom, probably one time.

So her problem got me to thinking about the idea that the play therapist had planted in my head. She suggested getting a few parents together to have a "mock" early intervention preschool. She also suggested trying to contact OHSU for information as to what to do in the classroom. Judah's teacher won't give me her curriculum. I've asked 3 times. Anyway, I'm going to talk to my friend (mentioned above) about it & see what her thoughts are. She's been trying to have play dates for kids on the spectrum at her house, but it didn’t sound like they were working out as well as she had hoped. There’s got to be a way to get these kids more class time.

Judah brought his brand new $8 train outside to drive through the rocks and dirt this afternoon. When I realized what he was doing I quickly told Sebastian to go inside & get Judah an old car to play with. Sebastian came back with one of our nicest trains. I explained to him more clearly what the situation called for. He came back with a new car Judah had gotten for Christmas. I gave up. My Pinterest brain turned on & a truck ramp instantly came to mind. I grabbed the biggest cardboard box I could find & tore it into a ramp. Then I told the kids what it was and tossed it into the rocks. Their eyes lit up! They all jumped on it as if they were expecting a magic carpet ride. Anyway, it basically turned into what I would call rock sledding. They had a blast. Cardboard boxes are always, always, always fun for kids.. of all ages.

They didn't rock sled for long. The rain came not too long after we had gotten outside. Scott pulled the van out of the garage and the kids rode their ride-ons in a circle in the garage, chasing each other around, usually Willow & Judah running on foot after Sebastian on the Krazy Kar. He is so good at that thing. He can control it unbelievably well. His bike is broken, so he has resorted to Judah's Krazy Kar for outdoor fun. He seems to have mastered this toy. Judah rode it too. He's slowly getting better at it. Anything Judah rides Willow demands and begs to ride 5 minutes after Judah gets on it. Her legs aren't long enough for the Krazy Kar. She sits in it & goes nowhere, getting madder & madder because she can't make it work.

Judah wasn't showing huge progress today. Sebastian & I laid down a blanket of pillows on the living room floor directly in front of the couch. The kids love to jump off of the couch, landing softly on pillows. It seems to wear them out - a bonus for us. Judah was eating dinner as Sebastian & I laid out the pillows. He started to get up & I told him he needed to finish his dinner first. Jumping off of the couch is one of Judah's favorite past times. For him to sit there & finish his dinner while we put together his favorite game in plain view, watching his brother take "test jumps" off the couch, was a ginormous challenge for him, there's no doubt about that. But he did it. He sat right back down, ate all of his dinner and then came over to jump - and had so much fun. This kid can jump off of the couch and go right into a somersault on the floor. Tonight he did a headstand!!

That reminds me, I still need to check that gym out that I found for the kids.. I'll do that tonight.

Judah did some imitating, but not much. When we played outside he livened up a lot. He had the same burst of joy when he soared off the couch. I think he may be mad at me because of what happened yesterday. When Daddy helped him on the potty this morning, Judah was extremely less agitated & even sounded like he was having fun!?! As soon as Daddy was off work Judah was climbing on his back and having the best time with him. I can't say that I had any experiences at that level with Judah today, although he did come to get me & take me to the living room when everyone was playing in there this evening.

Scott worked from home. He picked up Sebastian from school (and dropped him off too!) After that they went to lunch at the mall. This gave me time with Judah since Willow was napping. I tried to get him to work on his snowman book from preschool and had no luck. He even scrunched up the pages & threw them. My next attempt was the Thomas matching game. He held interest in that for maybe 5 minutes, at most. I showed him how to flip the cards over & match them. I made a match & he smiled. Then he went away, begging to watch Wubbzy. At this point Willow was awake & playing with the Thomas cards at the table. I got no real Judah time today.

Willow woke up crying to have her diaper changed in the middle of the night last night. That was weird. It turned out that she just needed to poop. Seems so strange to me that someone would wake up in the middle of the night to poop.

Dad sent a DVD & info on a professor at ASU who does a lot of autism work. This prompted me to Google ASU and autism the other night. I found a really great site.

The only link I've looked at so far is this one (which has been incredibly helpful & informative) :
I think it's like 53 pages long??!

We are considering trying melatonin to help with Judah's sleeping issues. His last doctor recommended it but we never tried it. Nothing has improved as far as his sleeping goes.

Judah took his usual meds - Vitamin D 2000 i.u., 1 tsp fish oil, 1 probiotic, .2mg L-carnatine. He had two doses of Miralax & also a large bowel movement (in the real potty) after an hour or so of screaming/crying "Help!! Help!!", bending over & holding his tummy. Often it would get worse when he was on the toilet (I tried to get him to stay on for a while). So I think part of it may have been that he wanted to just go in his diaper. This is his 4th? time in a row pooping on the toilet - I thought he would be okay with this by now, but maybe not. Had he not gone today we would have had to do his first suppository, something neither of us want to put him through.. we desperately need another option. Judah wore pull-ups all day today - I forgot to put him in underwear. He wet every one of them.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Sad Panda

Today was rough!! Not the usual overwhelming rough but the emotional rough. Judah was sad & it seemed as though there was nothing that would cheer him up. His siblings were with Gramma & Papa today & he was on his own with me. Once I realized he wasn't his usual self, I took him to the Discovery Center. He played with a train in the gift shop for quite a while. From there he took me directly to the train room. They had repainted the building, but he knew exactly where he was going. We watched the trains for quite a while, sitting in the same spot the entire time. Judah was up & down, running to press the button on one side of the display for one train and then dashing over to the opposite side of the display to press the button for the other train. Then he would sit down with me, directly between both buttons. We would watch the trains run for about 60 seconds. As soon as they stopped he was up pressing buttons again. I couldn't count how many times he did this, it was a LOT.

He just wasn't himself today. We went to the rest of the rooms at the Discovery Center, and as we left he looked up at me with big eyes & said, "Train?" I could see in his eyes exactly what he was saying.. he was politely asking for the train in the gift shop, letting me know how much he loved it. We headed towards the gift shop & suddenly he was happy! He said "bye!" to the couple leaving and walked into the gift shop to pick up his train. He grabbed it & showed it to the lady at the desk. Earlier he had just played with the train, not taking it off the shelf. He knew exactly what we were doing, we were buying his train. He was happy during the ride home, but eventually got sad again. He told me "bye" a couple of times when I tried to talk to him at home. This meant that he wanted me to go away. I asked him if he wanted to go to Gramma & Papa's and he looked at me and said very seriously, "Bob", meaning that he just wanted to watch SpongeBob (what he was watching). I asked Scott to come home & take him over to Gramma & Papa's. He did. Scott was getting ready to leave Gramma & Papa's until Sebastian started up a conversation with him. Judah jumped in and said to Scott, "Go! Bye!" haha. Apparently Judah was much more, vocal, communicative and happy while he was there. He even ate for them. He hardly ate for me at all today. Once home he went back to being sad. I don't know how to cheer him up, I hate this. Tomorrow has got to be better.

Sebastian did about an hours worth of reading with Gramma today. He has to chart his reading for school. He needs to do 15 minutes every day. Gramma also worked on Spanish with him. He came home & told me what he had learned - he took it all in! Yesterday we read one of his Star Wars books for 15 minutes. We made it through one sentence, he worked hard on every word. He's been bringing home Star Wars books from the library every week. Gramma brought him a book about monsters today. He was excited about that. I was too!

Willow saw her tutu and wanted to wear it today. She loved being in it, and she looked adorably unmatched & happy. Toddlers can get away with anything. When we had our Mommy/daughter time this morning she heard me say, "Oh jeez!" and repeated me. It's so funny when you hear toddlers say things like that. It never gets old. ;)

Judah recognized his cubby & put his things away as soon as he walked into his classroom this morning. He told me "bye" a couple of times & "love you" - initiating "bye" on his own. All of his friends were coming in at that time. Saying "bye" to me over all of the kid traffic was impressive. I talked with his teacher, mentioning some of his recent changes & asked her to let me know if she saw any other jumps in progress. She told him "bye" & waved as she was walking across the street after class. That told me she has seen changes. A week ago she wouldn't have done that. I was only able to talk with the aide after his class, who didn't fill me in on much at all, she just apologized for the crap in his hair.

At home I showed Judah where the play button was on the remote control, which is filled with tiny buttons. I asked him to press it. He pressed it & held it down. After a few tries (with my help) it worked. Later I asked him to press it if he wanted Wubbzy to start. He kept ignoring me & then finally just pressed it & had no problem finding it.

Judah said "jacket" beautifully today.

Judah has been putting his dishes in the sink for a week or two? now.

Judah's eye contact today was incredible, he was looking at me every time we talked - even talking with his eyes at one point to plead for a train.

There were four chicks on the television. Judah pointed to each one and counted, "One, two, three, four" and stopped! Typically he counts things kind of randomly, doing a couple of things twice or adding more, etc. It's rare to see him count things accurately!

Judah took - vitamin d, probiotic, fish oil (after very purposely & slowly spilling the first dose down the stove vent right in front of me) and l-cartinine. He drank a lot of rice milk today.

Notes from Gramma (what happened at their house this evening)
David said "Thank you young man!" Judah repeated with almost exact words and tone! I jumped!

Judah looked at me each time I said his name this evening. He made great eye contact and smiled.

Said, "potty" requesting to go to the bathroom and did he ever go!

Said "cake" for Sebastian's cinnamon roll and smelled it. He would've touched it but that's when Sebastian protested.

Told Scott to "go." At least twice. 

Proudly showed us his new train. Very nice!

Never got into anything he wasn't supposed to. I'm not putting things up anymore as it's not necessary.

Judah laughed and played all night, talking and interacting.

Put on his pajamas with little assistance.

Said, "no" when I asked if he wanted a bath.

Brushed his teeth and again politely handed me the brush to put away. Almost always he's pitched it. This is the second time he's handed it appropriately and smiled.

The one thing that bothered me was when Judah looked into the full length mirror and started pulling at his hair and lightly hitting himself on the sides of his face. It was as though he was angry with himself, maybe frustrated. But it lasted just a short time and he was back to laughing and playing.

The washcloth fell into Sebastian's tub prematurely and Judah attempted to retrieve it and give it to me. He knows that the decorative washclothes don't go in and I think he thought it was one of them.

Sebastian informed us that Judah was saying a lot more words and would be talking soon cause he'd had a lot of therapy and stuff. He was pleased. "I can understand everything he says," Sebastian declared proudly. So supportive.

Sebastian wrote five words and one "ai" vowel dipthong today in Spanish and we translated into English which he read. He also learned a new word: 'rio" for "river" and drew a picture of a river with the two versions of English/Spanish words on it for his teacher. Stuffed the envelope with chocolate and his drawing.

Read Monsters You Should Always Avoid with me today for 50 minutes! The illustrations were riveting! Stayed focused, asked questions, pointed at words he knew and read them. He also re-read some simple sentences in the book, pointing at the words. We are working on basic sight words. I think he needs to either do the pointing to stay focused or maybe use a marker. He also is learning two phonetic alphabets so this is a little confusing to him. But in the end, he'll code switch beautifully, I predict. We talked about "code switching" and he was pretty fascinated.

Shot his bow and arrow. Willow retrieved the arrows very diligently, saying "Bastian, bow." The arrows got stuck in the trees at one point and Sebastian climbed up to rescue them by shaking them out. Papa helped. Willow and Gramma cheered.

Sebastian alternates between calling me, Rita or Reet, and David is David and occasionally, Dave. Funny!

Willow talked a lot today. She and Papa went to Safeway and she was so pleased to get to go by herself with him. She talked non stop, I guess. She's saying Bamba for Gramma a lot and took my necklace today and said, "Bamba, pretty." Repeats everything! She ate turkey, a little cheese, some bread (Sebastian made her mini sandwiches from bites of his GF roll) and milk.

Dinner: Willow had yogurt and applesauce with a stab at turkey then some "ice." Sebastian had GF pizza and corn on the cob flanked with GF cinnamon rolls for dessert.

Judah: applesauce and Lay's chips. He didn't want anything else but I figured he was happy so that was good.

Everyone played stairball with Papa before baths/jamas.

Buenos noches!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

L-carnatine Deficiency - Vitamin Magic!

We just ran around all day.
Judah's doc believes he had an l-carnatine deficiency and thus the sudden unbelievable progress that began the same time he started taking it. The reflux med that he hates has been discontinued since his sleeplessness has been unaffected by it.

Folate and B-12 will be next. She spoke highly of Dan Dr's. We have an appt with the one in Oregon City soon. Insurance will not cover this though. She said we can get tests to determine other deficiencies (and prob allergies??). She said its very expensive. With what we have seen in a WEEK there is no absolutely no reason to not pursue this. We have to make that happen. We will start down the natural healing, inflammation, supplements road (that my friend has recommended to me forever). If anyone wants to help us figure this stuff out we will gladly listen! :) Whatever the challenges, we have to keep going.

My eye Dr is giving me different drops to help me see at night. He blamed the problem on my apparently freakishly gigantic pupils. He says my pupil size is one bigger than the biggest size on his chart. Maybe I'm a werewolf.

I sat with Judah in the van and told him about all of our food being on the porch because the fridge had broken. He understood, complete eye contact the entire time and a big smile afterwards. He thought it was funny.

Fridge man came and fixed the fridge. The cooling system in the freezer was covered in ice. He melted it off, was here quite a while, Judah was touching him periodically and trying to get around him to see what he was doing in the freezer. At one point a large metal bowl crashed to the ground - it had fallen out of the sink. I used it to mix brownie mix yesterday. Everybody jumped. I picked it up and later noticed that the large chocolate covered spoon was sitting on top of his tools. I snuck behind him and grabbed it before he noticed!

Phone dying and computer network has a bad virus.. Not good!!

Judah took all supplements - vit d, probiotic, l-carnitine and fish oil. Reflux med has been stopped per his doctor.   He also had 1 serving of Miralax and 1 of Benefiber. He had a very large bowel movement today, his 3rd day in a row without one. Doc has told us to do suppository if he doesn't go in 24 hrs and enema the next day if constipation persists. Do this until he can go on his own once a day. She said it will probably take 2-3 weeks. He wore underwear from 3pm - 7pm, no accidents, even pooped on the potty during that time frame!!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

What Is Going On Around Here?!?!?

Scott was able to get up early enough to get Judah's reflux med in him 30 mins before breakfast. He has to take it 30 minutes before eating. The plan is to continue this routine. Scott is not a morning person by any means, I'm a bit shocked that he was able to do this. But he's also able to handle different events in the middle of the night that go along with having 3 children. He does this with determination - seeing middle of the night events as equally important as to what happens during waking hours. He has stayed up with our children in the middle of the night for hours.. he probably hasn't set a record, but he would be up there for sure. His ability to get up 30 mins early to give Judah a med really shouldn't surprise me. Although I would find it extremely difficult!

Today I got the kids to school, arriving 3 minutes before Sebastian's class was to start. When we were getting in the van this morning Sebastian announced that he had no car seat. It was still in the other car due to the weekend activities. This screwed up our perfectly timed schedule, but he still got to class on time, barely.

We got to school, I told Sebastian to, "Run!!" and he did, but not without doing his dance & blowing me a kiss first. Seriously, how did we create this boy?? Willow & I took Judah to his classroom, all of the aides were heading out the door. They pointed out the mass of ducks/geese walking in the field nearby. Judah wasn't too interested - he wanted to go to class. Willow didn't want to go in though, she wanted stand outside in the cold and say, "quack, quack". Once inside Shelley greeted us. She didn't seem her usual self, maybe she was anticipating a negative IFSP meeting? Judah hung his bag & threw his jacket into his cubby. He was handed his chip (which is never in his cubby cup where it is supposed to be) and went to check his schedule, grabbed his "motor room" cue at the top and headed in that direction. I stopped him to give him a hug & kiss and say "bye!" He said, "bye!!" He said this again as he walked away, even saying "love you" at the end like I had just done. He turned the corner & then popped his head back around, waving & saying "bye!" to me. I think he wanted to watch me leave? He did this for a little bit & then his friends arrived (as we were leaving). He ran back into the main room and yelled, "Hey!!!", jumping up with his hands in the air. He loves school.

I grabbed a large coffee at McDonald's and raced home to read through the OARS website before our IFSP meeting. Willow needed a lot of attention, so this was no easy task. We picked up the boys & raced home. I got lunch out faster than I ever have & printed up my IFSP notes. Dave arrived & I raced away, making it right on time for the meeting

This happened when we got home from school - In under 15 minutes.. 4 year old blasting car horn in the garage, 2 year old having a meltdown over something I can't figure out, 4 year old runs into house.. 6 year old runs out to find me & yells, "Mom Judah spilled the eggs on the floor!!", while I'm cleaning up said eggs the 4 year old steals the 6 year old's sucker.. fight between all 3 kids ensues over a blue Dum Dum.

I should add to that story that when I saw the splattered eggs on the kitchen floor, I also saw Judah standing over them, pointing at them saying "egggg", clear as day. So that's good, I guess.

IFSP meeting was today - some thoughts on that/and thoughts on Judah's change:
2 hour meeting - compromising happened & everyone was decent, even nice, almost friendly? It's bizarre how people can change so drastically & so quickly, with no explanation at all. The progress that blooms with human change can be breath-taking. Human change can be miraculous. And it doesn't matter how these things happen - it just matters that it happened, and that we share that hope with others. I am thankful more than anything for change right now, more than absolutely anything.

We had the meeting - came home & discovered the fridge had broken - It's been leaking for months. The leak turned into more of a small lake recently, and yesterday it began to shut down periodically. A man came to fix it today. He defrosted it, but I'm not sure what else he really did?? Sebastian stood near him the entire time - he would know better than anyone. He let the worker know that he had turned on the water supply recently & that he knew how to get the ice tray out, etc. He's been obsessing over our freezer for much time. The refrigerator repair man coming was a hugely exciting event for him. Sebastian asked many questions. "Is that going to be loud? Where are you going to put that big chunk of ice? (the repair man told him he was going to throw it in the yard, haha) I never thought a worker would use a broom to fix a freezer (he was cleaning)." Sebastian doesn't hold back. Kids are honest. We paid the worker. Hours later the fridge isn't working - at all. Unfortunately our day was so busy that this wasn't noticed until early this evening when Scott arrived home. Scott is much more focused on the refrigerator issues than I am. My head is swimming with IFSP, capturing Judah's dramatic changes & trying to take care of, entertain and keep the peace among 3 children.

Tonight we got ice, filled coolers & put the food on the porch. Very, very thankfully we have a deep freezer in the garage. We did lose some food & all of the milk. And there's is probably more bad stuff in the coolers that we haven't discovered.

Rachael said Judah said another sentence today - although she wasn't there so someone must have told her. Shelley said she heard more new words & 2 word phrases then she could even count! A lot of "want.." Sebastian was the one who asked her about this! Otherwise I wouldn't have known!

I sat in the room with everyone at the meeting. Scott was in the bathroom & my mom had not arrived yet because she had gone to a different location (poor communication on our part). Luckily she was able to get to the meeting really quickly. Anyway, while I was the only family member in the room someone asked me how my day had been going. That's when I told the story about Judah blaring the horn, throwing eggs, a 3 child fight over a Dum Dum, etc. They weren't expecting THAT answer, haha. Add to that a broken refrigerator ladies.

Everyone was cordial at the meeting. The "higher up" that was present this time took control of the meeting. She was there to get this thing done. Shelley (Judah's teacher) was at the first meeting - her supervisor was at the next - and that lady's supervisor was at this one. We were getting frighteningly close to the top of the chain of command. That's likely what prompted the determined "Let's get this DONE!" attitude from the new lady. We did introductions & I told them what we needed to get done in this meeting. I asked them to explain how they measure developmental progress to determine service. For example, if the 4 year old is regressing but still much above another 4 year old's level, the less developed 4 year old gets no extra services, but the regressing 4 year old does. It all goes back to goals. If the kid isn't making his communication goals - more speech. If he is regressing with no apparent recouping  - more class time. Otherwise the focus is on making sure goals are appropriate & service time is appropriate, taking into account his level of development, the rate at which he learns, & progress on the goals.

We never got to the point of us feeling like we had to say, "Show me the policy". They compromised & with that we were satisfied. Judah needs more than what he gets there as far as speech, but Rachael also works with him more than she is required to - I saw that this month. That means a lot. We at least have what's on the IFSP but we could even be getting more help from staff who just want to do more. Because of the regression rules the amount of service can't be changed, the only way around that is having staff who go the extra mile. Remind me to send her a Christmas card. :)

The new lady said he needs more speech therapy since he had not accomplished any of his speech goals. The therapy he has now (30 mins a month) is the MINIMUM. So I said, "What's the maximum??" It doesn't matter. He won't get more until he doesn't meet his goals again. And I'm assuming the team decides how much more he gets. We had gone in hoping to get one more speech therapy session a month, and they volunteered just that. At previous meetings that didn't seem to even be an option to them. But once the lady said it, they all seemed to think that it was very appropriate. We need to bring that lady to more meetings!! She ran the meeting well, much more organized & focused.. nobody really ran away down a different road wasting time.

I asked about the Star Program again (what Judah's class uses). Anne offered to take me on a tour of their main school & let me see the Star Program in action. After the meeting Rachael offered to help us at home with speech therapy. Shelley offered to be consistent with using wet/dry potty cues like we will be doing at home. She agreed to our daily checklist idea & writing in the communication book as needed.

What is going on around here???!

OT lady had suggested at last meeting that he needs more OT time. He got another monthly session of that. She does a food group with him (and peers), he did well in that today. Pretending to eat, holding food on a fork up to his mouth & then feeding it to her, haha. On top of that they will continue what Scott & I thought the sub goal was (not the food group)  - giving him a non-preferred food at snack every day. The therapists agreed to be in contact with his other therapists & to email them progress notes & email us progress notes & Shelley will email her progress notes to us. this will all be done monthly. We told them we were no longer requesting current speech and ot assessments to be done - they only use them for eligibility - and instead that we were confident the new therapist communication would be more than adequate.

They suggested that they email/mail the IFSP - we can add to it if there is something they missed that we agreed on - then we all sign & this thing is done!!! We will meet every 6 months to discuss his progress instead of yearly. We also suggested getting him into a class with kids who may have similar personalities that he could learn from. It's a rotating door in a lot of those classes, so moving him to a new class also runs the risk of huge change and then his new friends may leave. We are thinking about that one.

That's it for the most part!

Judah peed on the floor this afternoon and wet his underwear right before bed as well. He had a wet diaper when he came home from school. I feel like today was a step backwards with the potty training.

His progress today has been amazing though as far as understanding us, eye communication, following direction. I told Sebastian, "Judah understands you now". Hopefully the brotherly communication will progress. Sebastian said, "I just want him to talk more."

Judah took all his usual meds this morning and 1 serving of Benefiber this evening.

Monday, January 27, 2014

A Factual, Interesting Blog

You may have noticed that along with writing/"blogging" about our day, I also try to keep track of information, events, dates, milestones, etc. in here. This entry is backwards from my usual entries. Less blog, more facts. So it may look under construction - but it's not. It's tons of "information". It's good stuff!! There's just so much going on with Judah lately - his sudden growth & development is unreal! I'm trying to get it all down so we can see even more clearly what is happening. Dave is doing an incredible job of chronicling this information as well. Thank you Dave!!!

Not much of a event-filled day. The boys had the day off from school. We were home all day, but man we were busy!!
Yesterday I brought a Sophia t-shirt home for Willow. As soon as she saw it she had to wear it. She wore it through the night over her pajamas and all day today.
Sebastian is loving corn tortillas with cheese & turkey - still need to give him more new foods.

The kids played inside a lot today. It was chilly outdoors! Sebastian stuffed the big football tents with pillows & blankets. He got inside and rolled off the couch numerous times & later put it on the floor to use as a hideout. Judah played with him a lot, rolling off the couch. Willow enjoyed the hideout.

I've been giving Bastian small jobs around the house - he's learning to do new things.

Tomorrow is Judah's IFSP meeting. We'll be working on that tonight.

Today I spoke with a lady from WESD after the woman I met yesterday told me about her. Man I wish we would have found her sooner!! She gave me information on classes WESD holds, childcare for the classes, the chain of command, resource for support groups & autism groups in Salem & will contact the resource for me. She told me there is a Resource Room we can use to get books at the Salem Hopsital Rehab. She seems very passionate about helping parents in this world - even though it is not her job. She advised me to get what my child needs, go up the chain of command and also mentioned filing a complaint. The classes meet once a week for one hour. I think they go for 6 weeks?? They have had these as long as we have been a part of WESD apparently. She said if I give her specific questions she can likely answer them. Very helpful lady, was so glad I called. Unfortunately I had Willow literally screaming in my ear & the two boys going crazy in the background so it wasn't the most productive or professional of conversation, but I still walked away with a lot of info for helping Judah and feeling like we could very potentially gain more help from WESD with the classes.


Scott left for work this morning saying, "Bye Sebastian!".. Sebash said bye.. Scott was almost out the door and then he said, "Bye Judah!" Judah was looking in the opposite direction & said "Bye!!" He did not respond when Scott said goodbye to Sebastian but instead looked like he was waiting for Scott to say "bye" to him.

I followed Judah back to his room. He pointed to the floor and said, "Waaa!", showing me the puddle of water. I gave him a towel in the kitchen and said, "Let's go clean the water!". He went directly to his room & cleaned it very well! While he wiped the floor he said, "Clean up clean..", probably singing the clean-up song.

He said "type" while he typed with me.
He is saying, "All right!" a lot.

I gave him a choice between a blue or orange shirt to wear. The orange was Cars. He said, "Blue!" and seemed pleased when I handed him the blue shirt. I left the room. He came up to me soon after and had taken his pajama shirt off & was handing me his blue shirt. I began to put it over his head, he immediately started trying to do it on his own. Getting it over his head on his own hasn't happened yet.

I asked him to let Pixie in from across the room. I only asked once & did no gesturing or any other type of communication. He walked over to the patio door, opened it up & let Pixie in, closing the door as soon as Pixie was in the house.

He picked up the dustpan when I started to sweep up a bunch of popcorn and held it down for me to sweep into. He carefully put it into the trashcan, missing only a few times - he concentrated harder after that. Used dustpan well the entire time, then used his hand as broom.

He said "McQueen", "yeah", "that one" & "arrow" when he was picking out a video on the computer with Sebastian. All very appropriately. He said "steep" when we were watching Wubbzy & MANY other words.

He was in underwear most of the day. He had one accident on the couch. After that he showed me a diaper in the bathroom. I showed him underwear and said it. He repeated it back to me with the best pronunciation of this word to date.
I spent an hour with him in the bathroom, trying to keep him on or near the potty. He needed to poop but either couldn't do it or didn't want to. I finally just put him in underwear. He played with Sebastian, rolling off of the couch in a tent full of pillows and blankets. I took him to the bathroom often, but still no luck with the bowel movements.
Dry diaper thru the night last night.
He was trying to say letters in his Wubbzy book. He said Widget.

He saw me getting his toothbrush ready. He moved the stool to the sink and stood on it, waiting for me to hand him his toothbrush. We still do hand-over-hand and then he does some on his own. He cleans his front teeth well but doesn't do others.

Sebastian showed me a funny dance that they do at school. It reminded me of "Walk Like an Egyptian" (Bangles). Judah stood next to him, imitating the dance & smiling.

He is laughing a lot & smiling. He was very enthusiastic, talkative and ready to take on the world today!

He was repeating Sebastian's bedtime story as Sebastian told it. He told me words that correlated with what was about to happen in the Wubbzy video we were watching. He had so much new communication when we all laid down for 15 minutes - I can't even remember all of it! He said "sticky" then "eeewww" - he knows what it means.

Judah took usual meds - L-carnitine 0.2 mL, 1/2 tsp fish oil, 1 probiotic, 2000 iu vitamin d & reflux med. He took Miralax once. He tried to have a bowel movement on the toilet many times today, no luck, seemed pretty painful for him.

Below is an email from the woman I met yesterday who has a daughter at WESD (only 2 yrs old so not in their school, just doing home visits). I highlighted the parts that I think we need to look into.

About the whole gluten/casein free diet - I know several moms with autism kids who have started doing that. I met a woman who has a 9 year old son and you would never guess he is autistic. He talks and acts just like a normal 9 year old. She told me that it was because they were able to pinpoint all of his allergies and cure them! I know you are thinking how can they cure them? That's exactly how I was reacting. Well, she told me to go online and google NAET and allergy treatments. She sees a doctor up in Portland. He is actually a chiropractor who also specializes in the NAET treatments. He can cure a person's allergy in 3-4 visits. I could not believe what she was telling me until she pointed out that her son was non-verbal, was not progressing with any milestones, he had meltdowns, etc... Once they figured out that he is allergic to 18 of 32 of the most common allergies, she realized that it was negatively affecting his sensory system and putting it into overdrive. She is from CA and had a doctor down there that started doing the NAET treatments on him but when she moved to Keizer, she found the closest doctor was in Portland. I have done a little research on it and I plan to do more. I am going to be scheduling an appointment for Holly to get allergy tested next month. Read up on it though, it's very interesting info. Makes a lot of sense.
Also, when I was talking about the Qigong (pronounced chee-gong) massage. . .the Doctor who wrote a book about it is Dr. Louisa Silva. Her office is out south. Her book is great! I would definitely recommend checking it out or at the very least just google Qigong massage and you will see all the benefits to it.
Hopefully some of this info will be useful for you. I feel like I am just beginning a long road of discovering new techniques to help Holly. I am very hopeful that we will get approved for her to get social security benefits because I will use them to do NAET treatments as well as schedule a meeting with Dr. Silva to ask her questions about the Qigong massage and have her help me to make sure I am doing it correctly. I also want to get Holly into occupational therapy and speech therapy. There's a place in town that specializes in kid's with autism through horse therapy. I would love to take Holly this spring. It's $40 a session but you can apply for scholarships to help with the cost too. Plus there is also music therapy. Holly LOVES listening to music so I think that would be a plus!!! Anything and everything I can do to help her, I will do it!!
She also recommended Autism support groups on Facebook - I have joined many but always forget to try & keep up with them!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Sebastian's First Comic-Con

Willow used the potty a lot today (the real one!), unsuccessfully most times, but very much determined to sit on it any time I mentioned it to Judah or when Judah went potty. They fought over the stool when Judah wanted to wash his hands after he pottied & Willow was demanding to use it to potty. I may start potty-training Willow. I'm just not sure if she knows when she has to go.

Judah, Willow & I played outside (they had snack too) for quite a while today. Nice weather again. They rode trikes together. Judah would use his feet to push his trike way up the driveway. Then he would lift his feet, and soar backwards down the driveway. He only fell over on his trike one time. Willow saw this & did it with him, many times. Great interaction. Judah played badminton, concentrating a lot, sometimes able to hit the birdie into the air towards me. He would put the birdie on his racket, hold it out and try to send his birdie towards me using the racket. He came up with the idea of putting 2 birdies on his racket to have a better chance of accomplishing his goal. When he had the soccer ball he tried to throw it over the neighbor's fence (he loves doing this so he can go over there & get it). I stopped him. Then every single time I looked away or walked away he would stop whatever he was doing and try to throw it over the fence again. He knows what is going on.

Scott & Sebastian went to Comic-con today. Sebastian had a blast! He told me all about it when he got home tonight. After hearing his stories, I thought tonight might be a good time to Skype Meemaw & Granddad. Sebastian could tell his Comic-con stories & Meemaw & Granddad could catch a glimpse of Judah's recent progress.

We Skyped for quite a while with them. Scott & Willow were gone. Judah stayed on camera most of the time, even more than Sebastian! At first he did run off a couple of times, probably out of habit, but had not problem with me setting him back in the chair. Sebastian showed them his Spanish homework & popped on camera wearing his various masks from time to time. He showed them the new karate moves he learned at Comic-con today as well. He took a class while they were there. His kicks were really good, I was impressed!

Judah ran off & seemed to be looking for something to show them. I suggested his new Mack truck (kind of pushed him into it). He showed them & played with it (and Mater) on the desk for a lot of the Skype. He also put together his thick puzzle & started putting together one of Sebastian's 24 piece Cars puzzles! He showed them the thick puzzle after he put it together. He threw handfuls of puzzle pieces a couple of times. He willingly helped me put one of the puzzles back into it's box.

Judah seemed to be very aware of what was going on during Skype, but not quite sure how to engage. He communicates very physically with people he loves - that was probably part of it - not being able to do that through computer. And besides, talking via computer is a bit weird, scary & always feels new. We should probably try regular Skyping sessions with Meemaw & Granddad. He did seem to be more talkative when Sebastian got  riled up. Willow does the same! They want to join in and also want the attention. Judah's soft voice seemed hard for Meemaw & Granddad to hear (another Skype disadvantage). He talked to me directly, very softly a lot during the Skype, wanting me to play with him & with no intention of leaving the chair/Skype.

Judah stuck his face in the camera & made a funny face for Meemaw & Granddad. He knocked on the screen & also showed them his tongue for quite a while.


The lady I met yesterday (just one year older than me) sent me a big email. She mentioned many, many helpful things! She took a CLASS at WESD! They have classes?!? She told me who to get in contact with, which happened to be a lady that Christy (a friend who moved but had a son in WESD here before that) had spoken highly of. We will be contacting this lady! We've met her one time in the past, at Judah's initial testing/evaluations/eligibility session. That was probably almost 2 years ago. Anyway, apparently WESD told her about the class many times, called her at home & even sent her a pamphlet on it. Are we at a different WESD??? Her daughter is 2, so they are at the part where someone comes out to your house to work with your child. Our lady only came once a month for under an hour. I'm very curious to see how their experience will change once her daughter is in school.

  • The classes are called IMPACT, the contact is Maija at WESD. My friend's class went for 6 weeks (met once/week). They may also have a 1 hour one-on-one coaching session (my friend recently took one). Her class focused on teaching your child to communicate & playing with your child.

Another helpful tid-bit, using ancient Chinese massage known as Qigong massage. My friend Dynee has done this with her child too. She saw results, my new friend has too. She said it helps a lot with sensory & relieving energy blocks. Her daughter enjoys it & it also relaxes her at night. She uses a book that Dr. Silva wrote.

  • Judah's sensory - he likes pressure, he likes banging his body against things & spinning. Qigong massage. Dr. Silva (from Salem) wrote a book on it. She may be in town soon.

  • Judah's IFSP will be on Tuesday at 1:30. Mom may be joining, but other than that we will have no advocates with us. Unfortunately Donna from Dave's work( that we met with) has a meeting at that time. We haven't been in touch with Robin recently - probably should have done that.

  • Judah definitely does less when I'm a bit over enthusiastic or focused on him. That happened quite a few times today. He wouldn't do things I knew he could, things I have seen him do before.  He wouldn't zip his coat, wouldn't even try. Same with putting on his pants (eventually he did). He wanted much more assistance today than he needed. He would not get shoes or socks after being prompted many times.

  • Judah said, "clean, clean" as he picked up darts that I had told him to pick up. He was likely attempting to sing the universal clean-up song (they do it at school & Sebastian does it here).
  • He said "All aboard!!" a lot today. He said "Caillou" quite a bit while watching it. He named things he saw on the show & repeated things they said. He said "Oh boy!" clearly.
  • I asked him to turn off the light & pointed to it. He turned it off.
  • I prompted him many times to say, "more chicken please". He said "more chicken... please" eventually.
  • I said, "Judah do you want to come to the table?" just one time, and he turned around and went. He was watching tv at the time. The next many times I tried to cue him to go to the table & eat he didn't go (was also very engaged in Wubbzy on tv). I had to use the magic word "eat". He always goes to the table when we say that.
  • He used the real potty when he had a bm this morning.
  • He was in underwear about half the day. 
  • He had one wet diaper during the day & wet his pants immediately after he had finished potty and was heading to bath. .
  • He continues to pee in the tub. We rarely actively discourage that though - we need to.
  • We found a pirate boat in the garage. He looked at it and said, "Pi!" He told me "Pi!"repeatedly while he was in the tub, pointing to the skull flag on the boat. When we found it I told him we could use it in the bath. He went right inside. I walked into the bathroom to find him with his pants down, washing the boat in the sink. I asked him if he needed to potty and he told me, "bath!!" He did sit on the potty though - then wet his pants while heading towards bath.
  • He scooped up rocks with a toy outside, counted to 3 and then threw them. I showed him how to pour the rocks after he scooped them (just once). And that's what he did after that! I squirted water with a bath toy & handed it to him. He immediately figured out how to do the same! The past 2 nights he has put a lid on his sippy cup correctly & independently. Tonight after he did it, he held it to his chest and said, "mine".
  • Judah had lots of eye contact with me & some with Willow today. (Scott & Bash gone)
  • I counted to 11 before he could open the freezer for me to check his chicken. He caught on right away. Usually he slams the freezer door open & shut repeatedly while he is anxiously waiting for his chicken to cool. He was able to wait every time I counted. He got excited when I would stop at 10, he thought the anticipation of the big "Eleven!!" was great.
  • We did all of his supplements & med before our late breakfast. Going to start doing them all in the morning.
Judah took same meds/supplements as usual. Nothing extra.

I'm going to try & persuade Scott to write in here about the Comic-con experience, Sebastian's first. (age 6)

DAVE- Italics in the top of the blog are for you. The rest is under Judah.

Comic Con
Sebastian went to his fist comic con today. We went because Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca) was leading a panel on what it was like to be in Star Wars. Sebastian really enjoyed seeing how tall he was and hearing him talk about playing Chewbacca. After the session we went to see the green power ranger. He was leading a karate class on how to kick like a power ranger. Sebastian just watched but showed us his moves when we got home! After the class, we walked the convention floor for the rest of the time. He got to see a lot of comic book artists including Neal Adams as well as many old comic books and even a working R2-D2 unit. Overall I think he had a good time. I think his favorite thing was the chocolate brownie toffee ice cream!


Saturday, January 25, 2014

Scurried Blog of Magic

This entry was written in a scurry. I had to unload the magic of today in a safe place, before it traveled out of my head.

This morning was a flurry. It felt like we were under huge time constraints. Mom & Dave had to pick up Sebastian & Willow before Judah & I left for his music therapy in Portland. Scott was supposed to be gone but he hadn't been able to leave yet because of all of the chaos. He snuck Willow & Sebastian out, Sebastian freaked out because Willow left when he was still on the potty. Judah stayed in the bathroom with me, but he knew quickly that they had gone. He ran to the front door & banged on it. Judah & I rushed to music therapy and ended up being around 6 minutes late. That may not sound like a lot, but that six minutes belongs to a 30 minute session. She did the full 30 anyway and seemed kind of rushed. We probably threw her schedule off, causing her to rush, but she was too polite to tell us. That sounds like her. She was packing up her car minutes after we were done.
  • Words in his session with Angie that he can now say clearly - Nine, chick, happy, egg (I think he knew already), bee.. and more I can't remember.
  • They do animal sounds - which he does a lot now.
  • He has recognized some letters at home - he does an alphabet app with Angie that involves touching & saying letters.
  • They work on direction as well - we need to see if he knows right & left, it's very possible he may.
She counted eggs as he put them in the drum. I told her that he could count to ten (she didn't know). She stopped at eight and had him say nine, and he said it, crystal clear. He won't count if you start the counting, but if he starts on his own he will count, and if you join him he will stop . Then he'll just sit & enjoy listening to you count.

He is fascinated by candles, loves to blow them out. He didn't want to start the music therapy session until he was able to blow Angie's candle out.

He didn't touch the light switch and only ran around a bit at first. He used to turn the lights on & off, run around the room, grab random instruments & play them, run up and play on the piano when it wasn't time, etc. He always opens the door to a small room inside the studio and runs in. Today he went up to the door, I followed and suggested we close it. He closed it and went back and sat down. He was playful, jumping on me, but nothing near how he usually is. Typically he is very active during his sessions, or "kinesthetic" as Angie calls it. She used to spend a large part of the session just trying to catch him.

Angie followed his lead at times, not much. They worked together harmoniously. He followed her directions like never before. She asked him to put an animal that was across the room into her drum. He walked over, grabbed it, walked back & dropped it in the drum. When we drummed in a circle he watched both of us closely as he drummed, as if he was figuring out what he was supposed to be doing. She went slow and said "slow", he followed, going slowly. He did the same with fast. He stopped exactly when we did. They do this routine every session, so he knew when to stop. He's never done that before though. He was pretty focused & definitely watching to figure out what to do and quietly listening a lot. At times it was more like he was following the rules rather than the usual crazy fun (although he did have fun). He was calm and at times seemed to be waiting on Angie to tell him what the next event was.

Angie told us to clap, which we did for a few seconds, and then Judah started to run off. We stopped clapping and Angie got up to grab him. She stopped him & he turned around to head back. As he walked back he started clapping, all on his own. haha.

He grabbed her hand when it was time to jump and then grabbed my hand so we could all jump together, haha.

I am going to see if she can record a session soon.

On the way there I had shown him a purple car, a yellow car & a blue house.. one after the other. During a break between songs he touched the purple part of a frog - looked at me and smiled, saying "prrr" (purple). He was sweetly proud of himself.

We drove to Bauman's after music therapy. I said, "Hey Judah" and looked back to see him looking at me, as if he were going to say "Hmmm" or "Yeah?". THIS NEVER HAPPENS. His face was serious, just like Sebastian & Willow would be in that situation. I asked him where he thought we were going. He looked around, studying the landscape. When I told him Bauman's he said, "Bauman".

He was in complete awe when we were driving today. He would say, "Wow.." as if the views were amazing (which they were not at all). He would tell me what he saw. He is calling a lot of things train or cookie lately. He also likes to point out things that are similar to tires or train tracks. Bridges were exciting to him during our drive. When we passed tractors he would say "Trac!" And of course he said "cars" at times, while looking at the cars. Cars never seem to get old to him. They are all unique, like everything in life. I think that's how he sees things in life.

While at Bauman's Judah used the adult toilet three times in a 3 hour period. He pottied at Mom & Dave's twice after that, keeping his diaper dry all day long. He rode a teeter totter completely on his own for the first time and for quite a while, even bucking around like he was riding a bull & sometimes flying off his seat & holding on as Sebastian would hit the ground hard with his seat. Judah went from doing this activity with physical assistance to having wild fun, just like that.

Today Judah started letting us know consistently when he needed to potty. He holds his lower belly, either saying, "help", "poop", "pee", or "potty" to tell us this. I think he will learn quickly to go on his own when he needs to go. This communication was complete assurance for us that he knows when he needs to go. He kept a dry diaper all day long until he apparently tumbled into Gramma's jet tub trying to reach a toy.

There is a new area at Bauman's, only kids 4 feet and under are allowed (but they never have anyone on site watching over people). Bastian is right at the mark. Very, very soon he will find himself above that mark & will likely be extremely upset. The tube slide in this area ends a couple of feet from the wall - Sebastian would swoosh out in a blur and end up with his feet up in the air against the wall. He is so tall!!

Gramma pushed Willow in the swing. Willow is feeling better, although she wasn't too talkative at Bauman's. She had fun sitting w/Papa while Judah ate his lunch.

After Bauman's I stopped at Home Depot and picked up 150 pounds of play sand. It cost under 12 bucks! As I put the 3 bags in the back of the van I could see the van dropping. When I got home I set out a big rug and put them on it to drag them to the spot I wanted them. It was like dragging a body. We are going to fill the base of the basketball hoop with sand. If we have left over we can use it in the sand box.

After that I stopped to buy some clothes & shoes for Willow from a lady I had met online. After talking with her for a few minutes by her car, I learned that her daughter (her only child) is autistic. I wasted no time suggesting we have a play date. These people are hard to find!! She just wants to hear her daughter talk. Her daughter is 2 1/2. I know that feeling all too well. Like me, she hardly knows anyone else who has this life, a life taken over by something that appears with no explanation, has no known cure & is impossible to define, autism. We agreed to keep in touch online. Before we had only talked about her baby clothes, now we have a completely different relationship. I met her for 10 minutes and we were both almost in tears, promising to keep in touch. Our worlds are different than many - they can be very lonely, frustrating, confusing, exhausting, dramatically surprising and hugely stressful. It's emotional when you run into someone & learn that they live in that world too. She's my 3rd acquaintance in this place. She told me that I gave her hope.

Next was home alone time - loud music & random projects around the house.

Scott was at Comic-con all day.

The most incredible thing about today was that Judah was here, he was with us more than he has ever been. He was laughing, smiling, & acknowledging what was being talked about. When he arrived home with Gramma, Papa and his siblings, he pointed to his shirt & said, "oh no!" he was saying things like, "mine!" to let me know that he wanted HIS pajamas on. He came home in Gramma's "emergency" pajamas because earlier he had fallen into the tub & soaked his own pajamas. The emergency pajamas consisted of a pink tank top. As if that weren't embarrassing enough, he was wearing one of his baby sister's diapers. I grabbed him & he pointed to his room, "that way!!", he yelled. I asked him if he wanted his pajamas, he waited patiently for me to find them in the laundry pile (usually that is a moment of panic for him because I am not getting them from his room & he thinks I'm doing something else).

When Mom & Dave were here Judah was smiling & laughing as they told the story of him falling into the tub. He told me, "Waa" (water) while patting his head and smiling, his eyes bright & happy. He spent most of the time they were here engaging & listening. Only a small portion of the time (near the end) was spent playing with his trains on the edge of the couch.

update: Judah woke up in the middle of the night & walked into the living room to find Scott & Willow asleep on the couch. Scott told Judah to go back to his room (one time). Judah turned around & headed back. Scott & Willow followed. Judah went right to bed. Scott & Willow stayed by Judah's bed for quite a while. When they left Judah was still awake & did not get out of bed. If he is awake in bed and there is not an adult near him, he will come find someone. And he never walks away to go back to bed on his own, he must have an adult with him. This was all very different behavior for him!

Judah took- L-carnitine - 0.2 mL, 2000 iu Vit D, a probiotic, fish oil & reflux med. No bowel movements, but acts as if he needs to go.

Below are Gramma's notes from today -
Lest I forget: here are bullets for today
  • Judah said "Baumans" as he and Molly pulled into the drive. I've heard him say it only one time before.
  • Judah pottied three times at Bauman's and twice at Gram and Papa's on the grown up toilet, letting us know when he needed to go. Dry diaper all day. Pulled his pants up and down himself every time.
  • Motor skills are definitely improving. His balance and confidence have improved a lot. Not near the stumbling and falling that he has shown in the past. Examples: sped up and down the wooden stairs in the fort at Baumans and never stumbled on the rolled log floors of the fort; raced down a hill with Sebastian and wasn't clumsy at all; rode the teeter totter without assistance with Sebastian (MILESTONE); rode on the merry-go-round at our park which is sloped so kids have to hang on with hands and feet. He only fell off once when Sebastian got going faster than Judah could climb on and get positioned. Never done that before. (MILESTONE)
  • Talked all the way home in the car identifying: train, truck, some letters, car, bye, go. We were trying to keep everyone kind of quiet so Willow could fall asleep. Usually it's Sebastian who's the talker but today it was Judah.
  • Said "hi" to a lady at Bauman's and flashed a big smile.
  • Was waiting politely while a Bauman's customer got a cheese sample from a covered dish. (Don't panic, Molly) and got himself a cracker. Normally, he would have pushed to get to the cheese fast!
  • Made clear eye contact with me several times and smiled...kind of like that special smile Sebastian gives me. Judah caught me watching him brush his teeth tonight, carefully finished, then smiled and handed me his toothbrush.
  • I would tell him "all done" with some things and with one exception, he complied gracefully.
  • Said "zip" (zipper).
  • Did not crash the trains or get into the the things upstairs at our house that I forgot to put up today. He's really processing.
  • While waiting in the car for Sebastian to go to the bathroom so we could go to the park after Bauman's, Dave said he talked a lot. Asking for the "key" (pushing the panic button, ha!) and said car, out (wanted out but we were only making a pitstop), and said other things that Dave didn't understand but he was trying to have a conversation. Great progress!
Funny things: Dave was watching Sebastian in the big tub tonight and Judah was in there watching in his pajamas fascinated with the jets. Judah reached into the tub to get a toy he wanted and before Dave could react, he tumbled into the water, soaked. He thought it was hilarious and Sebastian is still laughing. When he got home, he couldn't wait to get out of the makeshift shirt I'd found to replace his pajamas and into his own things. Tugged on the shirt, signaling to his mom that this was not routine and he wanted his own pj's. Ha! Sorry, Judah!
Willow was sitting on my lap eating her waffles and yogurt. She managed to drop a couple of bites and when Dave went under the table to get them, she grinned and swiftly ran her fingers across the top of Dave's head, lots of syrup, whipped topping, and strawberry jam provided him with a nice hair gel. HA!! She did the same to me a few minutes later, but it was funnier with Papa, I think.
Sebastian had a great day. He ate and ate at Baja Fresh, had a rollicking good time at Baumans, (Molly joined us for a couple of hours and he wanted to show her all his special things there which was sweet), asked a million questions about gravity, mass, and density. Why does paper fall to the ground and not float even though it's light? If I attached myself to balloons, how could I get down from space without falling? Could I breath above the clouds? So, tell me, what is oxygen, again? Also, picked up a kazoo and played a great tune or two. I still like his harmonica playing the best. Willow wanted the harmonica so we stopped to see about buying her one, too, but they were out of stock. I ordered two more so we'll have a harmonica ensemble of three, soon!


Friday, January 24, 2014

The Mystery of Judah

Some Judah milestones we've seen & heard in the past 2 days.
  • He said his first sentence in class yesterday, "I want juice", with no prompting.
  • He repeated every clothing item his speech therapist said as she pulled them out of a bag. (a week & a half ago & he only said one)
  • When she put them back in the bag he said a 2 word utterance for each one, "Bye coat, bye hat, etc.".
  • At home he matched letters to a wooden board with no problem. (I've never seen him do this puzzle & it hasn't been out in months)
  • At home he pointed at objects saying, "a, b, c". (another first, wondering if he knows his alphabet??)
  • Laughing much more than usual, seemed to be understanding more than usual.
  • Very responsive & engaging.
  • He pooped in the toilet for his first time today (he won't go anywhere near the bathroom when he has to poop! And he never uses the real potty!)
  • He zipped his coat & his sister's. (I had no idea he knew how to do that!)
  • Lots of new words, clear enunciation & imitation both days.
  • Kicked our kid basketball all around the yard, running it like he was playing soccer.
  • I handed him a sheet of clothing items that his speech therapist had shown him yesterday & he named each object, either as a noun or as a verb (what you do with it). There were only a few that he didn't have a word for.

I'm very curious to see how his music therapy goes tomorrow! Some of his new developments seem to be connected to his activities there.

Judah kept his underwear dry all day.

They went to McDonald's to play this evening. I had to stay back with Willow. She's had a fever in & out today. She was able to play outside with us earlier & refused to go back in. It was a gorgeous day. While we were outside, Judah kept scooting over from our rocks into the neighbor's yard of flat, colorless mulch. The minute he drove his little car into the mulch, rich brown dirt would appear. I spent a lot of time out there bending over to brush her weird yard with my hands. It was impossible to get it back right. And Judah was quick! I couldn't keep up! Eventually I just decided that we needed to go inside! haha. Tomorrow she may find Scott & I raking her yard when she pulls out of her garage. That will be awkward, haha

Not long after that, Judah threw our kid-size basketball down the street. I ran after it, because that's what you do when this happens, right? I realized immediately that there was no way I was going to catch it, yet I kept running. HORRIBLE plan. Judah followed me, Sebastian followed me on his scooter, Willow followed. The ball rolled down Chatnicka, took a left onto Glen Creek, was immediately run over by an SUV, popped out from underneath the SUV at lightning speed as if it were a pinball, which only set it off faster! I watched the ball fly down Glen Creek for a few seconds and then I turned around and immediately had to corral Judah, who had all intentions of continuing to chase the ball. I'm trying to capture Judah when Sebastian suddenly comes racing toward us on his scooter (as if NOW he is allowed to ride down the dangerous hill??). I said, "What are you doing?!?!?" and walked up to Chatnicka with Judah in my arms, only to find little Willow standing on the street corner all by herself, gahhh!! I was somehow able to call Scott for help in the midst of all of this. He came outside & jogged over to find me. Later he drove down and found the runaway ball. Apparently it was at Doaks Ferry. Alvin & Susan, we still have the little basketball, although Judah has now discovered a simple way to get everyone excited & crazy, so no guarantees.

We watched "Your Baby Can Read" this morning immediately after I asked Judah to name the pictures on his handout from school. I was probably driving him crazy, but I just had to know what else he could do! He said a lot of the words as they played on the screen. I remember "happy" and "chick" being perfectly clear. Willow was fascinated with this DVD. I've had to play it numerous times for her today. Maybe our baby CAN read?? I don't question anything anymore.

I was just helping Judah in the bathroom. He was quiet & tired, but knew exactly what was going on. He was going really slow, playing with the water, examining the shelf, etc. I said, "I guess you're not going to go night night? It's time to go night night, I guess you're not going to go." His pants & pull-ups were immediately down. When he looks me in the eye I know he understands, he gets it. Tonight I just handed him his fish oil & he drank it. Every night that is a fight! It takes both Scott & I to get fish oil in him. He wasn't up for it tonight, and I had a feeling that would be the case.. that's why I just handed it over (something we would never do typically). Scott told him it was time to go to bed, and with that he went directly to bed.

Willow crashed out about the usual time. We're giving her Tylenol & Ibuprofen. She just doesn't feel good.

Judah had - fish oil, l-carnitine, reflux med, miralax, vitamin d, & probiotic today. He also pooped today (as mentioned above), a poop milestone! :)