Children with autism who undergo early intervention show major brain changes

New research shows good news for children on the autism spectrum. Early intervention through "pivotal response treatment" can increase brain function, advance communication abilities and improve behavior.So what is pivotal response treatment? Here's what I know:- Developed at the Univ. of CA - Santa Barbara- Incorporates learning and developmental factors- easy to use, even with kids under 2- requires parental involvement- includes "play" situations...more

NY Times article on "The Brain Trainers" about raising IQ

Interesting piece on brain training (on computers and in one-on-one cognitive skills training programs):

momma needs her coffee (thoughts on autism & friendship)

I woke up this morning, and promptly wanted to go back to sleep.That has got to be a bad sign when you're ready to go back to bed before your feet have even hit the floor.I'm sure I'll survive stumble through my day without hurting anyone.I've got a list of things to get done for this birthday party on the weekend and to be honest I don't even know where to start. I wish I had started planning this months ago so everything was already in place and it was just a matter of setting it all out....more

Wreck-It Ralph is this month's Sensory Friendly Film on Saturday, 11/10.12

Many special needs kids are sensitive - to crowds, noise, lights, smells and other stimulation. Imagine how difficult it would be to enjoy something as simple as a family movie if you had such challenges. Yet, a popular movie is a communal experience - Read the entire article here....more

Why It Took 10 Years to Diagnose My Son's Autism

Thirteen years ago, I had my first son, Ethan. Like any mom, the one thing I hoped for was a healthy child. By all accounts, he was exactly that. I read all of the books I could get my hands on before he was born, and I really thought I had a firm handle on this parenting thing. At some point during my first year of Mommyhood initiation, I developed an unwavering tenacity to take on whatever obstacles life would deal to me. I had a newfound purpose in life that I had never felt before. A Momma Bear was born. ...more

Fun Family Thanksgiving Crafts + Ideas Wanted!!!

 Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and we're looking for sensory Thanksgiving activities to share with families that have children with Sensory Processing Disorder or on the Autism scale.  Please add a link to your craft idea on your blog.1. Get instant exposure2. Add the Linky Tool link on your own blog to expose your blog to others...more

"Why Does It Take Your Kid So Long to Get on the Bus?"

It's 6:45 AM on any given school day. We're standing in our driveway, my boy in my arms as always, a Thomas backpack slung over his diminutive shoulders. He's staring at his timer with the weight of the world and its worries far from his consciousness....more
Your ability to keep your cool is impressive!  I would like to say I am able to keep my ...more

Awareness, from the Beginning

What do I remember about O's early years? Misery. Heartache. Guilt. I am so grateful for the photos I took during that time, because through them, I am able to see that he and I really did smile....more

10 Self-Care Tips for Parents with Kids on the Spectrum

When do I possibly have time for a nap? It's about how to find the time. I often discuss the importance of self-care with parents of clients on the Spectrum. Self-care is incredibly important in any situation that is demanding, stressful, and time-consuming. Research conducted in 2009 at University of Wisconsin-Madison indicates that mother's of children with autism have stress levels comparable to combat veterans.How individual families go about managing time for self-care will depend on their circumstances. We don't expect all of these suggestions to work all of the time, for everyone in every situation, but hopefully they can help you brainstorm creative ways to take good care of yourself...more

My Boy Since Cancer

Since my six-year-old son Jack was diagnosed with Leukemia in January, there have been both sweeping changes and little changes in our life. Some are harder to describe than others - some more subtle while others are glaring. Sometimes aspects of his personality that were there before might come out in a more noticeable way, or they might be more hidden, protected. Jack is still himself, of course, but the version of him we are living with now isn’t as steady or balanced. I often wonder how much of him is changing permanently because of this experience....more