• Special Needs

    A Sensory Gifts Christmas List: Super Cool Gift Ideas for Sensory Seekers and Avoiders

    Are you a Mom or a Dad to a kid with sensory processing issues? I´ve just started my “hunt” for Christmas gifts that can provide my son with a nice dose of sensory stimulation. So, if you are also looking for sensory gifts, keep on reading. It´s actually been quite fun. I´ve been pleasantly surprised to find quite a number of fun and cool gifts that may make it under our Christmas tree this year. I´ve prepared a long Sensory Gifts Christmas List with all the “runner-ups”. And I have also added a few of the presents that have been real “hits” for us in the past (just in case…

  • Special Needs

    Autism & Head Banging: How to Prevent it / Minimize Harm

    Kids with autism or special needs may show a wide range of challenging behaviors such as property destruction, physical aggression towards others and, quite often too, self-injurious behavior. One of the most worrying self-injurious behaviors (SIB) for parents is head banging. Head banging, hitting the head with a fist, banging the head on the wall or floor are all different manifestations of the same behavior. For us parents it is an extremely overwhelming situation: fears of brain damage and for their general health and safety frustration over our inability at times to understand what is going on helplessness over our failed attempts to help them doubts about whether our actions…

  • Special Needs

    Music Therapy for Autism: How to Improve 18 Valuable Skills

    My son´s special education unit has just added a new resource: music therapy for autism and special needs. I have to admit that music therapy had never made it to my short list of autism activities and resources. While it sounded like a cool activity, my son is extremely sensitive to noises. He has a love-hate relationship with loud musical instruments. He explains it like this: “They scare me and I love them at the same time”. As excited as I was about music therapy for autism, I immediately realized I was clueless about how it could help my son. So I got in touch with our music therapist, asked…

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  • Traveling with Kids Includes Special Needs Tips
    Special Needs

    A Survivor’s Guide to Traveling with Kids. 50 Awesome Tips, Special Needs Included

    How many times have you done 40 hours international travel with kids? I do it every summer, often on my own! Can I make traveling with kids even more exciting? Oh, yes. My eldest son has special needs and a lot of self-regulation issues, so I know how fun flying with kids can get.  By now you may be thinking I´m superwoman. I´m not (don´t tell my husband!). Traveling with children can get messy. If you are also positively sure that, at some point during the trip, there will be an emotional outburst or a meltdown, the fun is guaranteed. But for us, who miss our overseas family, “not traveling”…

  • Special Needs

    Play and Learn: 10 Life Skills a Kid Can Learn with Just One Board Game

    Have you realized that some games are not just a source of entertainment but also an amazing learning resource? I think we are all used to seeing how much kids learn through playing. But for me, it has been a mind-blowing experience to realize how many life skills kids can learn while playing a board game. “Play and Learn” has now a new meaning for me. In this post you will read: – 10 skills a kid can learn with just one board game – How you can turn popular games into therapeutic games Our babysitter bought Junior Monopoly for my kids. I was a bit skeptical because our son has…

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  • Special Needs

    Autism & Elopement: 30 Tips to Help Prevent Autism Wandering

    Have you ever stepped out to the backyard and found the gate opened and your son nowhere to be seen? Have you ever gone to bed anxious about your kid waking up before you and sneaking out of the house? You are not alone worrying about autism wandering.  As a matter of fact, autism elopement is a fairly common problem. Not long ago, I was chatting with my special needs Moms group about autism elopement. Half of us had kids who had escaped from home at some point in time.  Initially, I was surprised but I soon realized our situation exactly reflected the elopement statistics. Autism & Elopement A US…

  • Reflections,  Special Needs

    6 Reasons Why I Feel Fortunate We Found Our Caretaker Who Is On The Autism Spectrum

    A year back, our family relocated to a new country. Our eldest son has an intellectual disability and meets criteria for autism spectrum disorder. Since we are celebrating autism awareness day, I thought it was a perfect day to share why I feel immensely grateful that we found the person who helps us take care of our son. Our caretaker has high functioning autism. She has been a blessing and I am sharing below the reasons why we feel we have been very fortunate we found her (and honestly, this is just top of my mind. I´m sure if I took a bit longer-which I can´t because the kids are…

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  • Reflections,  Special Needs

    5 Ideas to Support Special Needs Siblings

    Being the sibling of a child with special needs is not easy. Caring for a child with special needs often involves large doses of individualized attention. And the siblings may feel they are not getting the attention they crave. In our case, our son needs continuous supervision. There is no way I can take a shower while he watches television. By the time I finish, he could have left the house or our living room could have been transformed into a war zone. This intense supervision and the need to deal with “crisis” management may end up translating into less attention to our daughter. A few months ago, I was…

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