I think our Elf really is a fireman....
Friday, December 13, 2013
Thursday, December 12, 2013
If you are looking for a unique holiday gift, Pink Dogwoods Vintage Jewelry has one of a kind pieces created just for you. These one of a kind jewels are adorned with beautiful trinkets, customized for you! Give the gift of exquisite taste and style by giving an original piece from Pink Dogwoods Vintage a Jewelry!
Pink Dogwoods Jewelry is the reimagination of a vintage or antique jewel. If you love your grandmother's rhinestone brooches and pearl ear bobs or her delicate cameos and earrings, you'll love the pieces that Nan brings to life in her collection. Vintage brooches are reimagined as statement cuffs while antique earrings and pins are transformed into Jewelry Box Bracelets - no two pieces are ever alike. Nan has created necklaces and bracelets for bridal parties and frequently creates custom pieces for jewelry lovers from their own family heirlooms and treasures. Pink Dogwoods Jewelry can be found at Urban Digs at Stone's Point in Greenville and Two Doors Down in downtown Spartanburg (trunk show going on now). And who doesn't love a flash sale? On Facebook, Pink Dogwoods hosts monthly jewelry flash sales...scoot over to www.facebook.com/PinkDogwoods
to get in on the action. Browse her previous collections on Pinterest.
Chimney Rock State Park is excited for Santa's arrival... Santa will rappel off the face of a 315-foot cliff! Really? Yes, really! Old Saint Nick still has mysterious we haven't discovered, and this is one of those magical moments!
|Dates:||Dec 7th, Dec 14th|
|Cost:||No additional cost with paid Park admission|
How is Santa able to climb down millions of chimneys around the world in a single night? He practices, of course. Witness Santa’s daring stunt as he practices on one of the world’s largest chimneys at 315 feet tall! Meet Santa and Mrs. Claus, enjoy live holiday music, complimentary hot cocoa, cookies and kids’ activities and see live critters. Sponsored by Coffee on the Rocks in Chimney Rock Village. Come see why Chimney Rock was named one of “10 great places to catch up with Santa” by USA Today.
Wednesday, December 11, 2013
The following programs have been extremely helpful to my son and a huge blessing to our family.
SC Children's Theatre ~ Pieces of the Puzzle:
Surfers for Autism ~ Nationwide
Lowes Build & Grow Free Kid's Workshop
Home Depot Free Kid's Clinic
Clemson Challenger Baseball
Mane Solutions at Oxford Farm in Anderson, SC~ Equine Therapy
What a huge blessing these programs are to families in SC! Thank you all for the lasting and positive impact you've made in my families life!
Support, networking, social play, etc...
SC Autism Society
Pediatrics Unlimited, Inc.(cannot brag enough about the therapist here! They have social groups, also)
Worried your child may have autism? Aparent'sperspectiveaboutautism....the puzzle within apuzzle... #evolvingautism
I see the affects Autism has on my now, ten year old son daily. Although, life is far from perfect, and we sometimes have major bumps in the road due to autism, my son is happy, and we are extremely proud of him!
I have been thinking about the autism diagnosis, the before and during...and also for our family, the enduring, and the waiting....
What I hope to save you...if you have concerns....is precious time...you ...will...never get back...
Please look over these signs below and really do some soul searching...question your questions and educate yourself, so that you can help your child. My son fit many signs, yet he has always smiled, made eye contact and responded to his name......but......he still has autism.
First, I want you to know that my son did not have extreme and rather noticeable delay's...at first.....
I did question internally...some....but, it did not *jump right out at me* ....Although, this is night and day different...it's almost like someone who may have lost or gained weight that you live with....it's all so gradual and you can't see the little things....Autism evolves....and is still evolving within my son.
At the tender age of two there were some concerns, but not enough to put me into a full blown mama panic.
My son made eye contact, he laughed, he responded to his name...he had no toe walking, no hand flapping, and no other outward autistic traits....again this was at two.....
He did have delayed language skills...but he could recite the alphabet very early on...he knew each train and could verbally tell you their name...He could not carry on an appropriate conversation and tend to use certain words repitively. This is known as echolalia. Children with autism may say a word over and over....like a broken record...As children begin language, parents sometimes just enjoy hearing their little one udder words...Unless you are specifically trained in speech pathology, chances are you would dismiss this...This belongs in your world,you've become accustom to....don't blame yourself...
Another sign was sifting sand at the playground...and playing independently. I saw everything with those wonderful rose colored mama glasses...My son would slide and wanted to swing and enjoyed playing...but upon really close observation...his go to activity was sifting sand between his fingers....completely content and unaware of his surroundings...just engrossed in this activity...I dismissed this quite often...Parent's aren't trained, unless they are in certain medical or educational fields, what to look for and what is behavior that is worthy of discussing with your pediatrician. Often times, you don't see this every single day and you forget....How often does sifting sand ring a bell as odd behavior for a child? I would say almost never...
My son would play with a neighbor...but, looking back it was along side him, never really playing together and that is hard to distinguish. He went to preschool and it seemed to me like he was progressing...but he wasn't. It's so hard for parents to finally break down and seek help for delays. It's almost like waving a surrender flag, that you failed your child....it is also quite a few missed warning signs and not so much deep seated denial. The real denial comes later....
You think to yourself ....surely, my pediatrician will alert me if I need to worry...don't count on it. I was told many, many times by doctors I considered very competent, not to worry...reassurance is enough to file those worries away...for a very long time. Far too many Pediatrician's take the wait and see approach...which keeps you reassured and happy and you child suffers...unknowingly ....always err on the cautious side...if it's. It autism and only delays....those delays can be treated in therapy immediately ...the sooner the better.
Then something brings the worry front and center again...maybe a friend expresses concern, and although this shouldn't make you angry, we kind of go into mama bear mode. No one wants to hear their child has any flaws. It strikes a bad nerve and we recoil and get angry. I did, anyway. We think to ourselves my child can do x,y,and z! This takes notice off of the real problem and bruises our ego. You almost cannot bring it up to another parent if you see differences. People get very offended and even think you secretly want their child to suffer the fate their child has...but it's not a conspiracy...it's genuine concern.
Going through years of trying to get a diagnosis, wasted precious time for my son. We waited...and then waited more. We were on egg shells, then relieved, then brought to our knees again.
I don't know if the process is still the same, but we had to get an appointment with our pediatrician, then a referral to a developmental pediatrician, which took 6 months to a year, then another six months awaiting testing...it's a long........long.......process......During these months, we missed precious therapy, during these times we were left in the dark...
I would have nights were I googled "autism", and cry insesantly...then there were times I would unsubscribe to autism speaks, because I didn't want to belong to anything to do with autism. It was back and forth and very emotional... Meanwhile, the PDD waiver, which allows you to get ABA therapy for your child(ABA is the gold standard in Autism treatment), only allows for services until age ten, and the waiting list is....YEARS! To put it in perspective, my son will NEVER receive ABA therapy from the PDD waiver, because we were given an official diagnosis three + years ago! and his number isn't even close to being up. He's aged out of something he could tremendously benefit from. If you are in the early stages, you will find out this heartache all too early on. They tell you this therapy helps this and that, but then you are put on waiting list, only to discover you will never receive it. Oh and ABA is intensive therapy requiring thousands of dollars, even with insurance...then you have to find someone who is trained, willing and a match for your child.
I'm not trying to be depressing, but share my experience with you...nudge you to check into teeny worries, because if it is autism...the sooner the diagnosis the better your child's future. I'm still learning...
Why did I think my son was not worthy of that dreaded diagnosis?
My son did not flap, rock, or spin....this would have alerted me...surely....but maybe, not. As I've said, we become very used to and familiar with our children, so much so, that unless it's a really stand out moment...we miss or dismiss it.
Autism or related delays are tricky to spot...
My son never fit the bill completely, and even his Pediatrician, saw no need for a referral and basically did so as a courtesy to me. I had so much reassurance that I could conquer this. I would work hard, research and get this taken care of, but it was out of my hands...I've learned so much since then.
We get to my point again about autism evolving......
My son did not begin covering his ears or hand flapping until he was nearly 5..., yes.... 5.
My son began despising shoes around seven and a half and would only were lined crocs...this turned into wearing just bare crocs, then sandals, then those skeletoe shoes....at ten. He hates socks and if you try to make him wear them, he cries tears and screams as if you are physically causing him pain.
Now at ten years old, he refuses to wear long sleeves...thank goodness we live in South Carolina.
He performed in a play at The SC Children's Theatre "The Three Little Pigs" at nine years old and did quite well!
He can usually tell anyone we meet what day their birthday will be on the following year.....in seconds!! This began last year and we actually encourage him to ask others, as it involves social activity and helps build his self esteem. It's quite amazing!
He loves playing with his four year old brother and has learned to pretend play from him.
He rides his scooter everyday after school...he does this if it is torrential rain, too...it's almost like an itch he has to scratch...that need has to be filled everyday...no matter what.
He has always had meltdowns but now they are different....but it almost always involves with communication differences...even though I try my best, I still cannot get him to grasp everything all the time...boy when he does..it is ....wonderful! Today he said, why is it raining so much? W....O.....W!
In conclusion, please recognize your fears and keep fighting until you know...and if you are told no, and your child still has problems, keep on pressing... autism doesn't magically go away...children evolve, families evolve and autism evolves, too.
You can read our autism story from the beginning....
Lastly, don't be so hard on yourself. ever.....you did not know...wasn't equipped to know...but now you do....go forward and make a difference.. That's all we can do! Autism is never cookie cutter. Loud noises may bother one child, while others may have no issues with loud noises. Each child is vastly different, making this even more of a puzzle to everyone!
There are many free resources, early intervention, and advocacy groups, etc in South Carolina...These resources are invaluable to families.
South Carolina Resources, I recommend: