His Own Take On It

My company does a lot for Halloween every year.  It’s our eVP’s favorite holiday – back when we were more concentrated in one spot, there was massive decorating of our areas, trick-or-treating in the office, things like that.  Since we got bigger, the celebration got moved out to a central location (though we’ll still have something in the office tomorrow – pizza and beer, though I’m missing the beer due to scheduling).  This year, our party was at The Cloisters, which is really just around the corner from our house.

For Trunk or Treat on Saturday, the Monster was a pirate – today, he was a cowboy to go along with R.  (Frankly, it’s an easier costume that has him fidgeting with it a heck of a lot less.)  But the fact of the matter is, he still really doesn’t ‘get’ Halloween. Continue reading

Once More With Feeling

Yet another IEP meeting today.

This was the circle-back after we’d requested the evaluation to see if the Monster was eligible for a one-on-one aide, what Baltimore City calls a TAS – temporary adult support (with emphasis on ‘temporary’).  Basically, this meeting started off with a person-by-person recitation of how the Monster has to be constantly redirected in class, to the point that they’re not sure that he’s learning anything at the moment. Continue reading

Trick or Treat

My wife belongs to the Baltimore Mommies, a group for mothers here locally that’s associated with a national network.  Somehow, she got roped into doing a Trunk or Treat thing, which I’m perfectly okay with… because it seems to me to be a good way to do trick-or-treat for a child with Autism.

But of course, it also highlights things to consider with the mixing of the two things. Continue reading

Accidents Happen

It’s been a while since I’ve had a post dedicated solely to toileting, I think, since the Monster’s made it to a plateau in his toilet training.  He’s now, largely, going to the bathroom on his own when we’re home, but more often than not, he’s only doing so for having to pee.  We’re not up – dependably – to him making it to the toilet for poop.

And therein lies the problem. Continue reading

Talking About the Weather

One of my daily tasks is taking the Monster to the school bus, since it no longer just stops in front of our house.

Last year, when the Monster was on IEP transportation to get to Garrett Heights EMS, our daily procedure was that he waited inside, and I tended to either watch from my study, or go outside to stand on the curb myself to watch for the bus going up the nearby street on its way to us.  This year, though, there’s a couple of centralized pick-up locations, and so I drive him around the corner to one before I zip off to work. Continue reading

Math Matters

This evening, part of my task was to get the Monster’s homework done.

I don’t know how much the Monster really gets the basic concepts of math in the abstract.  He does, certainly, recognize numbers and can read out a ‘math sentence’ (what most of us recognize as an equation) to the point where he’s required to fill in the answer.  But he’s not making the mental jump to do the problems in his head. Continue reading

Forward Progress

Two weeks ago, we had the Monster’s first IEP meeting at his current school (see Talk About It).  At that meeting, we discussed changes to the current IEP to try to bolster his progress, since he’s been showing very little forward progress since moving from Garrett Heights EMS to The Mount Washington School.

Just to refresh: at that IEP meeting, we discussed increasing his special education (more than doubling it) and getting him an assessment for a one-on-one aide. Continue reading

Dietary Homework

Tomorrow is another trip to the feeding clinic, but there’s also whatever we can do at home to reinforce whatever is going on there.

My wife’s been working on giving him familiar foods in slightly unfamiliar forms.  For those who haven’t experienced the Monster and his eating… things have to look the way he expects them to.  Pizza needs to look somewhat like delivery pizza, and so-on. Continue reading

Fixing the Feeding

So, unfortunately, the Monster is a rather picky eater.

Finding something he’s going to eat is often a challenge.  There are things that he’ll eat away from home – chicken fingers, for example – that he won’t touch in-house.  Or the the appearance of those things has to be exactly the same each time he’s getting it, or he won’t treat it like the same, familiar food.  This is getting to be a problem, since the diversity of what he’s eating is actually, gradually narrowing, rather than broadening as you would expect with a six year old. Continue reading

Talk About It

Today was the IEP meeting with the Monster’s new team at the Mount Washington School.  We’re about six weeks into the school year, and it’s clear that we needed a checkup for the implementation of the program.  The Monster is just not making much progress and that spells trouble.

So, first thought – going to the school is a lot different than when we used to go to Garrett Heights EMS.  Aside from the fact that the office is literally right inside the main door, I was actually greeted by name by the woman at the desk, even as I was signing in.  (Scary – that they know who’s expected for an appointment.)   Continue reading