Sunday, September 29, 2013

Fall Fun (Plus the Standard Illness)

We've learned over the last five years that Mikan tends to try novel foods in environments outside of the home and not always at a specified meal time or meal place.  This weekend he took small bites of apples while he was helping wash them after an apple-picking session at Grandma and Grandpa's house.  Something about the atmosphere of the work and the sensory experience of playing in the water made him feel safe trying them.  He wanted to take one small bite of each one and then throw them in the cider pressing basket.  Eating etiquette is something we still need to work on.  

Our family has been battling a nasty respiratory virus that has made it's way through everyone except John so far.  I guess it's time to brace ourself for the sick season.

We also attended a carnival this weekend hosted by a family from Mikan's ABA center.  The kids had a blast in the bounce house and real kiddie train!  We just found out that Mikan will now be able to receive ABA services at home after school for a couple of hours each day.  We are excited about the opportunity.  We will continue to use the therapy time playing eating games, establishing a homework routine, and learning to interact appropriately with his siblings and peers.

At a recent IEP meeting, Mikan's teachers said he is doing wonderfully in school and seems to be keeping up with classroom instruction.  He completes his work quicker than most of his class, and he is reading and comprehending material at a second grade level.  This is good news for now. 

News on other fronts:  Drexler just turned 9 months and he is almost walking already.  He will take one step and fall.  He is participating in a research study at Purdue for siblings of children with autism.  His developmental progress is charted at several different ages and specific autism-related screenings are conducted.  

I took Anica to the doctor yesterday for her first sick visit ever.  She did great, but is refusing to take the antibiotic the doctor prescribed.  John and I are out of ideas, so I'm kind of just hoping that she has a virus and that the antibiotic isn't necessary anyway.  Most of the first dose ended up in her hair and on my shirt and the second dose is sitting in a large cup of juice today that she is refusing to drink.  It's only a 3-day dose, so I don't think we're going to get much mileage out of it...she's a stubborn one...

Friday, September 6, 2013

More Heavy Stuff

Mikan climbing on the spiderweb at the zoo playground on his ABA field trip last week

More Equipment on the Horizon: It just seems that whenever I think we are leaning towards simplicity, extra stuff gets thrown our way.  Now we are looking at ordering Mikan a speciality walker and adaptive chair.  Although he is fairly independent, his progress is plateauing and as he gets older he wants to do more.  The walker will hopefully help him keep up with his interests and the chair will preserve his strength during meals and his drawing time (his favorite activity), providing him more stability without "W" sitting which is harmful for his hips.  Lately the goal has been preserving muscles and alignment so that future surgeries are not necessary (or at least fewer than they would need to be otherwise).

Mikan is loving kindergarten.  He is easily completing all of the academic tasks, and his favorite topic right now is the calendar, so he loves all of attention paid to the days and months of the year.  Next week the class will be broken up into ability groups for reading and math and he will begin working on advanced curriculum. He is coming home talking about his friends and different activities he does during the day, so we are excited that he is enjoying school and seems to be adjusting well.  

This week he said that he played basketball on the playground with his friends and made up the rule, "Whoever doesn't make a basket wins."  
I asked him, "So did you win?"  
Then he said, "Everyone won."