Tag Archives: tantrums

Alice Kicks some butt!

6 Oct

Blog-Match the brilliant peeps that match bloggers with brands have paired us with the fantastic Tactic games.

 Tactic sent us two board games to review, Faqir and Dotto (which will follow in another post)

 So, what’s it normally like playing board games with two very competitive children, one who is rule band and throws an almighty strop when he loses?

A nightmare that’s what it is!

 Five minutes in and all hell broke loose. 

 Now, I should state If it was just me and the little man then his fine, he just can’t play alongside his sister unless his in control and things are going his way! Not easy to put this into practice when playing a board game.

 Later that evening Little man went out with his father and I took Alice and the youngest around my mothers house and decided to bring the game and ask my younger sister and her boyfriend to play the game with Alice. There was no point me even trying with my toddler about.

 Lucky my sisters boyfriend said he would give it a go and with much excitement Alice sat down to face her opponent.

 Inside the box

 On opening Faqir we found a board with lots of hole, 28 brightly coloured plastic cones, 24 faqir cards, 4 Faqir dressing rooms and a handy pouch to store cards and cones. 

 What each player requires

 Each player has a certain number of cards depending on how many are playing.

Each player has a dressing table in which they place one of their cards behind.

Lastly

Each player is given a set of cones, there are 4 different colours to choose from.

 Aim of the game!

 Players must place their first card behind they’re dressing table, leaving it only partially visible to their opponent.  Each card has a number of holes (like what you get if you hole punch paper) the holes make up a pattern. The players will take it in turns with the youngest going first (Yep it’s in the rules) each must make the same pattern on their card on the board. This is done by placing the supplied cones (aka nails, into the holes on the board) Once the pattern is complete and the players card can be placed on top of the nails avoiding injury and a nasty anti-tetanus jab 🙂 they move on to another card. Once all your cards have gone you have a winner.  

Piece of cake right!

No, not exactly it isn’t! You see, as mentioned above each players card is partially exposed to its opponent(s) resulting in part of the pattern being revealed. This may only be one or two holes but still it gives players a clue to their opponents movements allowing them to try and block you. 

 The contest

On the left we have Aaron, sister’s boyfriend aged 18 years

On the right we have Alice-Sara ten years his senior at just 8yrs

How is this even fair?

 Does Aaron have the ability to easily beat his younger opponent with his ability to think outside the box?

 No way, this is my daughter we are talking about!

Competitive should be her middle name.

 Jammy dodger pulled it off.

Whoop Whoop

That’s my girl

Alice scores it top marks ***** 5 star

Where Aaron gave it a lower ***  3 star… um I wonder why?

I later played this with little man and I think its brilliant for an older child with Aspergers as It improves non verbal reasoning skills and helps the child look beyond what he thinks he see. 

Well, Little man done well and I just bet him right at the end but it was close, very, very close!

Faqir by Tactic Games

Age 7+

2-4 players per game

Around 30 minute game time per round.

 Amazon currently stock this and I’ve checked and the good news is they have six in stock for £18.99 

Amazon

Visit the Tactic website for more information

http://www.tactic.net/

Autumn’s frights and delights

24 Sep
The leafs on the tree’s have that tint of brownness, the conkers have started to fall! The air is becoming somewhat noticeably cooler, and as the days go on, I notice more and more children heading to school in their wooly hats and winter coats!
google image
Well, all except little man that is! His a hater of coats (though his worn them in the summer when it resembles Spain outside the window)
I’ve spent so much money on these things, it’s driving me bonkers!
he isn’t outgrowing them, he isn’t even wrecking them , his just simply refusing to wear them. 

Do I get some deadly stares from fellow mothers when we are out and about?
GOSH, YES…
… You can see just what they are thinking, though the stare of their spiteful eyes…
“SHAME ON YOU, HOW CAN YOU CALL YOURSELF A MOTHER”
Raincoats are the biggest No, No!
Trust me, put one of them things near his skin and he’ll eat you for tea. 
A tactile related & highly upsetting meltdown, will be delivered quicker than you can possibly redirect your horrendous mistake.
Then there’s the issue of scarfs! 
I try to keep my baby warm, his hyperventilating accusing me of strangulation!
Wooly jumpers, Please don’t!
“I wanna get out the door alive”
Gloves, make sure there the right material, fingerless are my best bet…
despite the fact his fingers may drop of with frost bite!
This is what he likes!
I love the colder months, the festive events that near! 
I love being by the warmth of the fire, while a casserole slowly cooks in the oven releasing that savoury aroma.
I love the autumn smell that you get in the air and the extra bedding loaded on my bed at night!
I love the 5th November when the bonfires alight and the fireworks fly up into the dark musty sky. 
google image
Fireworks, these send Little man into almighty panic, throwing himself down onto the ground and army shuffling out of sight!
Oh Yes, we are now passed the fear of sun burn (hence the coat in summer).
Little man will no longer need to run from the buzzing bees & warps or shake his head at the flying ants
But with the fall of Autumn comes a whole different set of sensory related triggers & anxieties, ones you would never have imagined!
.Related articles

A love hate relationship

1 May

So, today I’ve been inspired to write this post by my beautiful daughter.

You see, my little princess is feeling a little left out! I guess I haven’t really treated her like the little princess that she is just lately.

I hold my hands up, life has been far to busy and she hasn’t received quite as much attention as I would have liked to have given her. I’m not stating I’ve neglected here, “As if my little diva would let me,” I’m merely stating that we need some one-on-one time without big brother! There has been less chick flicks & girlie pampering but far to many tears.

I look at my daughter with such pride, she is this truly amazing little girl who never fails to melt my heart. Like most siblings of Children on the autism spectrum, she seems quite mature for her eight years.

Over these past few months, which I must add have been pretty emotional for all, I’ve noticed my little girl has mimicked one or two of little man’s behaviours. It doesn’t take a genius to know why she has done this, after all little man gets quite a bit of attention when displaying such behaviours. Alice-Sara (My daughter) has claimed that she can no longer use certain cutlery when eating her dinner as it makes her feel fuzzy (tactile sensitivity). She has stated that it’s to noisy in school and has gone as far as throwing a tantrum over a miner mishap that wouldn’t normally bother her. This isn’t all! More recently see seems somewhat resentful towards her brother. It’s understandable given a good degree of the time he isn’t very nice to her and is extremely hard to live with, but it’s also to do with how much time I need to spend attending to Little mans needs, both social and educational. Last week I almost died of shock when my daughter, who enjoys school refused to attend. She throw me with her claims that she hated it and certain teachers didn’t understand her, yes, something her brother has stated through sobs of tears! She insisted that in-order for her to attend I would need to write some letters and sort things out in terms of her education! She also informed me that maybe it would be better to home educate her for a a bit while things settled down, Her worlds not mine! “Guys this little girl has a stack of friends and is popular with both the pupils and the teachers. Her reports always come back glowing with nothing but prise written all over them”. I knew what this was really about! With Little man’s pending Sen tribunal due to be heard in June, I have been writing statements, emails and filling out a ton of paperwork, mainly parental information needed to form part of his independent SALT and EP assessments. I have also been doing quite a bit of casework for my role as a TSS volunteer. Alice-Sara confirmed this to be the issue when I insisted we talk about it on the way to school when she so angrily stated why storming towards the front door, “Oh, You would have done it for him.” Yes, ‘him’ meaning Little man!

Alice-Sara loves her brother, however things are not always easy for her. All brothers & sisters normally quarrel, I’m not denying that, but come to our house, I promise you its beyond ‘Normal’!

Now, it’s not always the little dude who is the one to kick things off, my daughter has become accustomed to setting him off and she’s learnt how and what buttons to press in-order to get her desired reaction. However his rigid thinking and tendency to be inflexible and controlling has either brought her to breaking point or reduced her to tears. Lately she can’t seem to breathe without it bothering him. Just a few days back little man treated the family to a night on pain-killers. My daughter needed Calpol (children’s medicine) for her headache and although I had just taken a couple of good old paracetamol for my own chronic headache, I could have done with something a tad stronger like a few handfuls of tranquillisers to knock me out for the rest of the week!

Alice-Sara decided that having tried a ‘Fish Finger’ for the first time they were actually quite yummy. When dished up and the kids sat down for dinner, little man’s eyes wondered across the table in the direction of her plate. “OH NO…”

Little man: “Mum, you’ve given Alice the wrong dinner!”

Before I could answer…

“No, she hasn’t. I like fish fingers now.” Announced Alice-Sara.

Well, what happened next wasn’t anything unexpected as it happens on a regular basis! A full-on blow up was had that consisted of him claiming that his sister shouldn’t be allowed to like fish fingers as he likes them! “She’s copying me,” and “You’re horrible mum! They were my fish-fingers!” Those statements and a load more, accompanied together with kicking doors and throwing whatever was in his reach went on for a good proportion of the night. A real head banging event!

Last spring when things were really difficult at school for Little man which resulted in some challenges at home, I began to worry for both my Little man and my daughter. His aggressive behaviour was at a point that was deeply concerning. We went on a day out accompanied by my friend who ended up having quite an eventful time and one I’m sure she wont forget for some time! It was during this day out that I decided we as a family needed to seek professional help & support! Alice-Sara was happily flying a kite on the heath following the ‘Bike & Kite’ festival we had just attended. Out of nowhere came little man who had decided it was time she stopped! He run over giving her a massive shove that saw her fall to the ground. No tears followed, she didn’t even complain, just got up bushed herself off and returned to the joy of flying her kite. In that exact moment I realised that I had just witnessed something that scared the ‘crap out of me!’ Was this the ‘Norm’ for her? Did she consider it an acceptable thing for her big brother to have done? Would this little girl ‘my little girl’ grow up thinking it was Ok to be pushed around? I don’t want my daughter to ever allow herself to be treated like this, not by anybody including that off her big brother! It was lucky that at this time I was in contact with a lady who works for the autism outreach service for our area and how lucky was I when she agreed to visit me at home and have a chat with my little princess. I also gained some good ideas on strategies that I could implement that would hopefully stop little man becoming so physically aggressive towards his sister. It took some effort but results were seen, his hitting faded out and Alice-Sara would no longer turn a blind eye to his behaviour.

Sadly these past few weeks something has changed in the little man and myself and daughter have received some unwelcome attacks as a result. He even attacked his sister on a packed train when returning from the West End because she, ‘Disrespected Transport for London’ when placing her tired little feet on the seat she was sat on.

How can I make it stop? Consistency is our only hope. Strategies that we used last year have been tried but sadly failed, however this mum is on a mission and won’t give up on finding another strategy that works!

I’m guessing a number of parents of children on the autism spectrum will agree… consistency is a ‘must’ for all children but isn’t the easiest thing to apply when dealing with the child with Aspergers and they’re challenging behaviour.

To bring this post to a close I’ve finished with something positive. After all this talk of violence I think I need to! So, besides sharing some contact details for sibling support groups that some off you may find helpful, I’ve also included this beautiful picture that I captured yesterday on the train when on our way out for the evening to see a show in the West End to celebrate the Royal Wedding. Little man has his arm around his sister who happily excepted a hug as opposed to a slap or a punch! No-one requested he gave her a hug, it’s something that you just don’t see him do! I don’t know who was more surprised me or my daughter!

The Charity Barnardo’s run a number support groups for siblings of disabled children around the country. Some groups are mixed for both the Sibling and their brother/sister with a disability, whereas others are dedicated to the sibling alone. (028) 90672366 is the contact details for the London regional office. If anyone requires the number for their area drop me a comment or contact the above number as I’m sure they will help.

Contact a Family is another organisation who cater for siblings of children with disabilities. Further info can be obtained by calling… 0808 808 3555

Mencap are happy to put people in-touch with their local sibling support group. The number for England is: 0207 4540454

Kids are an organisation which runs play, education and social initiatives for disabled children and it is suggested that siblings may also benefit from their clubs, outings and residential weekends, and can be contacted on: 020 7359 7635 email: enquiries@kids.org.uk

With the rise in Measles it’s decision time!

24 Mar

This is such a hard post to write, and I really don’t know how to word what it is I’m feeling.

Nevertheless I need to try.

Tomorrow the 25 th March 2011 is the day I will make an appointment for my youngest child, (Little mans baby brother) to have his immunisation  (MMR) with our local GP.

He is almost 16 months old and should have had the vaccine almost 4 months ago. I wish I could just keep my baby under house arrest away from the worlds harmful viruses, but with two school age children how is this possible!

As a mother to a child with Aspergers this has been one of the hardest decisions of my life, but it’s one I must make as a parent. Both little man and his sister had the MMR jab with little man having his at the height of the controversy over the possible link between that of the MMR and autism.

I decided to opt for single vaccinations but sadly with the country having no supplies of the mumps vaccine this is a no, no. So, I called the local surgery and arranged the baby’s appointment for his immunisation with much fear and dread.

With reported cases of measles rapidly affecting a huge proportion of the UK, the pressure rises.

Do I want my child to be autistic? No!
Do I want my child to catch a virus that can potently cause him brain damage, even death?
No!

I don’t wish for either. However with their being proven risks associated with each of these conditions (especially that of measles) do I want to realistically take that chance on my son’s life? Again, No!
I don’t think I can live with myself if anything happened to him!

Measles can kill, It’s not some myth, but a fact that a child’s life can be taken by a virus that has the capability of becoming deadly.

I think I would rather have an autistic child then run the risk of having no child at all.

Some may say that is selfish! Then again some may say the same to those who choose against such immunizations as it’s  not only their own child’s life in danger but those around them, particularly that of pregnant women! Regardless of what society thinks, I love this little person with all my heart and I can’t help that.

It’s not like I haven’t spent time going over this in my mind! It’s been there since the day he was born  December 2009′ Its something that’s always been there niggling away at me.

Since I discovered I was having a boy I’ve faced that worry of him having an ASD. Of course girls have this condition too but the risk seem much higher for boys (regardless of the number of girls who remain un-diagnosis). Whenever Harley does something ‘odd’ or someone comments how like Little man he is I feel my body freeze. Don’t get me wrong, I love little man just as much as I love his siblings, and though I see his Aspergers as a gift, it’s not something I choose for him. I would never change him but this isn’t the point.

Little man has AS and if anything as a baby/toddler I didn’t notice any developmental delays! My child seemed very advanced. His language was amazing and he was out of nappies being dry throughout the day & the night by the age of 2. I didn’t notice any regression once he had received the immunisation. However what I did notice after this time was his in-tensed interests, obsessions, poor play skills etc. However these were things that I would not have noticed prior to the MMR and would have only become noticeable with age!  I believe little man has always had some degree of sensory sensitivity and sensory seeking behaviours from the day he was born. He only eats certain food, would gag if given a dummy, screamed if his blanket was in the washing machine, and had his bottle to age 6 (just for bed) I also remember his interest in trains from a very young age, he loved lining them up. By around the age of two, he was absorbed in Thomas the tank engine mesmerized by it whenever it was on the telly he was there eyes glued to the scene

There was one change I noticed in little man after the immunisation was given. His sleep pattern become a whole lot more unpredictable. Before this time he would sleep well but only in my arms or my chest (would never sleep in a cot, which is funny as he isn’t a cuddle seeker  at least not no more) As a newborn he had bad colic that kept him awake for hours on end screaming, otherwise he slept through anything.

He wasn’t pre-term but 4 days over due. I did have quite a difficult delivery, with him being born with the cord tightly around his neck, very swollen head and features due to becoming stuck in the birth canal and a very strange tone of blue. His little lips trembled and he was placed under the light to warm him up.

He never cried (apart from them few times he had colic), he never went through the terrible twos, he actually didn’t start the meltdowns till he was around 4 years old.

Harley (baby brother) had a great delivery despite him weighing a whopping 9lb. He was ten days overdue which was quite a surprise given the doctors were trying to keep him in there from week 30!

His extremely advanced! At first I didn’t think so, but he said his first word at 5 months, was taking steps at 7 months and wait for it, “having huge full-blown tantrums at 6 months” these involve head-butting everything, resulting in him looking a tad like Mr bump.

Harley is very advanced in his language, even stringing together a three word sentence and he could count to three by 13 months.

Little sister who was born 3 weeks early and the smallest out the three, met all her milestones at a pretty average pace. She is two years younger than little man and isn’t on the spectrum. She had the MMR jab at 12 months.

I know there is a huge proportion of the world who are very anti vaccine, I also know that many of these parents claim their child/children have been affected by the vaccine! I’m not here to say whether I agree or disagree, that’s not the plan at all. I’m writing this as a parent who needs to make an informed decision on what’s best for her own child!

Harley was very sick at five weeks old and we stayed in the hospital by his side for over a week. He had developed a chest infection that progressed into pneumonia and then he went on to contract H1N1 even through I had already contracted the flu virus while in the latter stages of pregnancy. I never want to see my child with feeding tubs and relying oxygen ever, ever again. If Harley caught measles, mumps or rubella and it affected him in such away how could I cope knowing I basically put him there! Contributed somehow.

Harley’s appointment is in 2 weeks time, he will be sixteen months old. Yes, I will sit pondering questioning my decision for that entire time, but I will also be clinging to the hope he doesn’t contract measles, mumps or rubella either.

I could go on forever writing this, reasoning with my own mind while putting it down for the world to see! But I won’t drive my head crazy no more (at least for the rest of today anyway)

This topic has always produced a debate and is bound to for many years to come! Science is a wonderful thing that sadly normally leads to worry. With medical professionals working hard to prove each other wrong which is mainly done in a display of public statements smeared all over the press, us parents hold little hope of maintaining a smooth ride. Faced with choices that have become some of the most frightening choices we will ever have to make!

I guess this is one us parents will never escape.

NOTE…
This is a personal opinion and choice! I am not stating that those that chose not to vaccinate are bad parents etc. For this reason please have respect if commenting. Although I’m happy for all to comment what ever the opinion, abuse and rude comments will not be published.

%d bloggers like this: