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Sunday, September 7, 2008

"Who Says You Can't Have Snow in Florida" (Pictures) : brought to you by, S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom

Well here we are on a rainy day and Dustin is extremely bored. John and I have been trying to think of something to do that is different for Dustin. After pondering, John decided to crush up some ice and make snow for Dustin to play with. We tried a few years back to visit up north and give Dustin a chance to play in the snow and make a Snowman; but of course it never snowed (not until we got back to Florida) Figures, right? Well I thought this was a super idea! So not only did Dustin play in the snow; Mommy, Daddy, and even Toni (sister) played with Dustin. He had such a Blast! Although, he still didn't care for the cold feeling of it. I tried to put mittens and gloves on him, but that didn't fix the problem either I guess. So cold hands we kept:) At least until our Snow melted:(

It was fun while it lasted though........Hope you enjoy the pictures. We had fun while they were being taken. Oh yeah, I almost forgot.....I added another poem I wrote to this entry. It's called "Years of Tears and Determination" and " Those Little Big Things Mean So Much".Writing is a great OUTLET for me; and Dustin is certainly my inspiration for writing this poem of strength and postive thinking. Take Care & Big Hugs!.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

"The Hello Book Continued (Printable Pages) :" brought to you by, S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom

If you're reading this entry it is because you are interested in the "Hello Book". If you look to the Top Right and Scroll down you will find "Blank" Pages for the Hello Book. You can revise and print them out so that you can share the child YOU know with others. I hope this makes life for you a little less stressful for transitions you may encounter. Just to help you a little bit more; I also added some of Dustin's Hello Book pages as well as some other favorite pictures of mine. You might even see some similar behaviors to your child. Nice not to feel alone, isn't it? Good Luck and Take Care.

:Our Baby is a 6th Grader Now?" Short Story: brought to you by, S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom

Well Hello Again,
I thought I would share the "Hello Book" I created for Dustin and his new school. It is so hard to believe our baby is a sixth grader now. He will be attending a new school and will of course have a new teacher and teacher assts. Dustin has an IEP like all of our children do with disabilities; however, they don't give a lot of details regarding Dustin in general. So, I created a book to give plenty of information about Dustin. If you look above at the photos; this is the book I'm talking about. I do suggest that if you know or would like to use my ideas for your child; you may want to add a page of "Emergency Contacts", "A Current Physical", and a "Vaccination Card/Exemption". This way the teacher has ANYTHING she could possibly need pertaining to your child right in the classroom & at her finger tips in case there is an emergency. This book would also be valuable to maybe a substitute teacher ( who again, doesn't know your child). Needless to say, the more info you can give on your child the better. I feel this book is vital for many transitions such as : new surroundings, new individuals working with you child, or maybe even for a Sitter ( of course one you Fully trust). We all know how wide the spectrum is and how each one of our children have their own special way of doing or processing things. Now with the help of the "Hello Book" helping your child get through the day without you or trying to calm your child during a Meltdown will be much easier with notes that you can express to others that may not be aware of certain methods that work for you. I really want to help other parents that are open to suggestions/ my help. Therefore, I added another journal entry after this one with "Blank" pages for you to create your own "Hello Book" for your child. I hope this has been a helpful tool for you. If you have any questions please contact me at smaartmom@centurylink.net Good Luck to you and I hope this will be a successful school year for your little one and you. Take Care.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

"Dustin's 12th Birthday Continues" (Pictures) : brought to you by, S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom

Here are some pictures from Animal Kingdom. We went the  day after Dustin's birthday. First visit and inspite of his fear of animals; Dustin did very well. We also got to see a lot of his favorite characters. Hard to believe he used to be so frightened years back by characters. He has really made progress. He really liked the "I Spy" game we played with the tree of life. If you have a little one present; see how many animals you can find in the tree. Again enjoy our pictures and adventure.
Until next time; Take Care.

"Dustin Turns 12 Years Old" (Pictures) : brought to you by, S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom

Well our baby is twelve years old now. We had a wonderful time seeing him really enjoy the whole concept of how exciting a birthday should be. He has truly blossomed over the years. Tears of joy are so much better than tears of sorrow. Hope you enjoy his birthday pictures. We did.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

"Autism, Always Creating & Keeping Him Occupied" (Pictures) : brought to you by, S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom

I am always trying to create new ideas, crafts, educational
activities,etc with Boo Bear. Here are just a few of our favorites.
This day Dustin was talking about our Hart Farm. So I found
farm animal magnet faces and had him draw their bodies.
After he was done I would ask him about each animal. He
had sooo much fun drawing them and giggled the whole time.
Did pretty good!

On this day I made a list of ten items for Boo Bear to check off.
The list was titled Dustin's Nature list. We took it to the park and
placed our items in a bag after checking it off the list. When we
were done ,we went home and created a Pinecomb Person. Isn't
he Cute? Dustin placed him in front of his Barn....very appropriate:)

This was a birdhouse I found at a dollar store. Of course it was plain when
I bought it..........that is until Dustin got to decorate it. Hope those birds
are Mc Donald French Fry Fans:)

Dustin loves to pick flowers. This particular day it was raining outside so
picking flowers wasn't possible. So I found the next best thing to do.
I sat him down at the table with some empty egg cartons, green pipe
cleaner, green contruction paper, butterfly & circle stickers, his special
scissors and then gave him an example of what I planned on making.
He was soooo thrilled that he ultimately made a bouquet of egg carton
flowers! Easy to do, unique, and wonderful home-made gifts. Try it:)

"Dustin Days 2008" (Short Story) : brought to you by, S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom

So here it is 2008. Guess it's been awhile since I added to my journal. Staying busy and getting distracted easily seem to become expected of me these days. Our oldest has long moved out and is now going to be 20 years old this July. While our daughter will be "sweet 16" soon  and sometimes far from sweet , seems more the typical teen. As for our youngest........Dustin will be 12 years old in August. How the time flies. Even though it is inevidable  I try to accept the fact that I'm most certainly feeling old these days. But even inspite of this, Dustin keeps me on my toes. "Dustin Days" assure me that every minute of each day will be far from a Dull one:) I've added some new photos to share with you and to show you some of the original things our son has accomplished (good/not so good). One of the pictures show Dustin in a room full of white footprints (which are his). This happened one day when Dustin had a craving for snow. Well living in Florida; What is Snow? Anyway, he found a way and really enjoyed himself until I came upon him. For the record and word of advice to moms that have children who like snow............Hide the Baby Powder! On that note, I better wrapp this up for now and go check on my mischief maker and let you take a glance through some interesting and hopefully make you smile kind of pictures. I've also added some photos of some of the autism events I've taken the kids to , among other outings. I never know what to expect with Dustin, but regardless, I have to try. In some pictures you will see hands obviously flapping or Dustin covering his ears because the sounds of things are too intense.Those were times I had to remove him from because it was too upsetting for the both of us. But that's O.K. "Life goes on". In addtion, there is a picture of Dustin with Santa Claus. I waited 10 years for this photo! I can't express to you enough how emotional I was ; and to make it more special.......My mother (who lives long distance) was able to share that moment with me:) Love you MOM!! One more thing....Remember, that even though some days will be most certainly worse than others; try not to look at those days as Discouraging or Trying. Think of this to be a test of your patience and an adventure in autism that will in the end of the day Reward you with a child who HAS made progress because of your will power , faith, and Unconditional love. Believe that God blessed us with these children because he knewour hearts are strong and full of love. Until next time. Take Care.