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In June of 2014 my family learned that my 4 year old son was autistic. This is a window into our world. What it's like day in, and day out for an autistic child.

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Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Christmas

We all had a wonderful time during the holiday season ! Justin did great with not touching the Christmas tree or ornaments. This was a big accomplishment as we have not been able to have one for the last two years because of Justin touching it.

We had several other lights and decorations throughout the house, he loved them all.

He would plug in the lights for the christmas tree every morning. He really enjoyed lying or sitting next to the tree with the lights on.

He would say, " Merry Christmas" all the time and sing several Christmas carols. He was playing them on his tablet well before Thanksgiving actually.

Christmas morning was a wonderful time for Justin.

He was so excited seeing and opening his presents from santa.

His favorite toy was an electronic ride on toy that sings loud music as it drives around.
Pics and videos coming soon !
#JustinsAutism


Friday, November 20, 2015

Justin Did Not Start School

Justin did not start school last Tuesday. After thinking about it, and discussing it with my family. None of us where comfortable with having him go for full day school.

Really, I was caught off guard at the meeting where we discussed it.

You know, I have been jumping through the schools hoops for 4 months now.

autism spectrum disorder
I felt blindsided at that meeting. I thought we were all on the same page, and than suddenly I'm feeling like I'm having to defend why I'm not comfortable with throwing Justin into full time schooling. I just wasn't prepared for it.

The other thing that I wasn't prepared for was Justin's behavior, see he was at that meeting. He heard everything we were talking about. After we got home he started acting out and misbehaving.

Doing things he had never done before like hitting his siblings, doing things intentionally wrong, he was angry and would make an angry growling noise, and he would burst out in tears.

As a mother, I could not ignore those signs. After we talked with him about it, we told him if he didn't want to go he didn't have to, he said "Good." Later that day his older brother asked him," Justin, do you want to go to school" to which he replied "No."

Because nothing can just be a simple adjustment, now we must set another meeting.
Oh the endless meetings.
#JustinsAutism

Friday, November 13, 2015

My Heart Is Broken

This is the most heart wrenching decision I had to make.

I felt like I really had no other option.

What I wanted for Justin was to be able to have him home, and get the treatment he needs. But because I don't have the money to do that. I had to rely on the public school system. That's all his insurance will pay for.

He is calm and relaxed when he's home, he's in a loving and caring environment .To me, that is the most important thing. He far beyond kindergarten academically, which is what he's going into.

No, I don't want to send him to school but I really don't have a choice...
#JustinsAutism


Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Jumping Through The Hoops

The meeting to find out if the school will do partial day/week schooling for Justin is Friday. I hope we come to some sort of conclusion with this whole ordeal. It becomes quite frustrating with half the year already over.

It's a constant jumping through hoops.

Justin is doing very well. He has discovered Christmas music, which he plays over and over on his tablet. He sings and hums non-stop.

Over the last couple weeks he started doing things he knew were a no-no. Like climbing onto the fish tank to play in the water. Or, hopping the kitchen gate and flooding out the kitchen. He has also been climbing and getting in to things he knows he's not supposed to.

We are hoping we'll be able to put up a Christmas tree this year.
#JustinsAutism


Wednesday, October 28, 2015

The Struggle is Real

People who don't have children with autism will never fully understand how real and in your face the struggle is, day in and day out.

Today I started reading the book, I am in Here. On the front of the book under the title, it says, " The journey of a child with autism who cannot speak but finds her voice."

I read 4 chapters, and was in tears for almost all of them. Finally, a book that explains EXACTLY what it's like. The desperations, the tears, hopelessness, struggle, and just all around feeling of getting absolutely no where.

I would recommend this to anybody with a child with autism. Never before have I been so drawn in and captivated by a book (and I'm not an author.)

Here's an exert, " I sometimes fear that people cannot understand that I hear, and I know that they don't believe I go to every extreme to try to express my need to talk. If only they could walk in my shoes they would share my news: I am in here, and trying to speak every day in some kind of way, " Elizabeth Bonker - the child of the author Virginia Green.

Elizabeth's writings and poetry are throughout the book. They coincide directly with her mothers writings. Through her eyes, feelings, struggles, and joys.


Sunday, October 18, 2015

It's Not Easy Raising an Autistic Child

No one knows what it's like having an autistic child, unless you are the parent or caregiver. It's not easy, for me it has been especially hard lately with Justin.

It seems as though he's regressed in some areas. Things I thought were long handled, like hopping the gate to get into the water in the kitchen. Yeah, that's back full force.

Frustration levels don't ever really go away. Sure, they may ease up a bit but they're still there.

I wish I could afford to have someone come in daily, or 3-4 days a week and do his therapies with him. His one occupational therapist is wonderful, Justin really likes her I can tell. She doesn't let him get away with things, and he listens to her.  It's hard to get him out. People who don't have autistic children will never understand this !

A few other regressions:
 * Getting into laundry room, dumping whole box of soap in.
 * Opening the hall closet, and pulling out tools and batteries and scattering them around his room.
 * Taking things off shelves.
 * Not listening.
 * Climbing onto the computer table, and jumping off (over and over again.)


Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Out and About

We took Justin out with us for the first time in a long time. We went to our favorite chinese restaurant, Target, and home. He did so great ! (Pic's to follow soon.)

At Target he got to see his occupational therapist, who we ran into.

Than we got into the car, and the meltdown started. It lasted all the way home, all 45 minutes of it.

He ended the ordeal with a super bubble bath. Which made him feel all better.


Saturday, October 3, 2015

Tired Boy

This week after Justin had his therapies, he got french fries from McDonald's, his favorite. We got home, and he took a two hour nap. He did this last week too. After he woke up this week, he was crying and had tears running down his cheeks, calling "Mommy."

I think we all fight change, and growing up. I see it with everyone of my other 4 children. So why would it be any different with Justin ?

I just worry though, because I don't want it to be to much for him.

What do you think, what would you do ?

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Monday, September 28, 2015

Ipad withdrawals

Justin has managed to re-set his Ipad, so it is getting fixed. We're going on week two without it, and Justin hasn't been to happy about it. He also managed to crack a tablet that we have too. So I have sacrificed my phone, and put several of his favorite apps on it for him. He was thrilled this morning when I gave it to him !

Friday, September 25, 2015

Back to Therapy

Justin started back at his speech and occupational therapy today. I didn't tell him until right before it was time to go. This is because there are to many times where I would tell him we were going. Then, I would get a call saying one of the therapists were out. So then we would have to wait an extra half an hour, which lets just say he was less than thrilled about.

He did really good, a little excited and wanting to get into everything being this is his first day back.

We than picked up his big sister from high school, and headed home. Apparently, he wanted french fries from McDonald's and I didn't know this. So once we got home, he had a meltdown. I felt so bad, I wish I had known !

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Yesterday I meet with the school board for Justin's annual meeting. We evaluated his progress, and determined what goals we want to pursue for the upcoming year. Along with his speech and occupational therapy, I told them I wanted to implement academics as well. So what I'm looking to do is take him twice a week to the school. He will be a part of the classroom and participate. He will have an assistant with him at all times. I'm really excited to see his progress, and how he does.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Five Little Monkey's Jumping on the Bed

Justin along with his 4 siblings, were all jumping on our bed. I could hear Justin's laughter above everybody elses. That moment made me so happy !

I am so glad that all of our kids get along so well ! There love for each other shows daily.
#justinsautism #autism #aspergers

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Fall Leaves

The high today is 83 degrees. It's so nice to be able to go outside, and it be cooler. Justin absolutely loves it ! The leaves are changing color, and are starting to fall.

Justin picked up a leaf today, and held it up to the sky with both hands. He had huge smiles !

He is getting more attached to his Ipad. He cries when the battery dies. I'd like to be able to get him another one.

I think I'll check into cheap tablets instead.

I've found there to be very little difference between the two. The main difference I found to be was the speed and memory. I would recommend getting the one with the highest memory you can afford.

The reason for this is if you get several apps, a smaller tablet will only hold 4-5 at the most. In Justin's case, this was no where near enough. He has a minimum of 10 that he has to have.

Friday, September 4, 2015

Busyness

Well the whole house has got sick, except for Justin and his daddy. He is such a sweet little boy ! Yesterday he took a nap, and when he woke up he came into the living room. I heard him come in, and he was singing. 

I heard him singing like a songbird for about 20 min. I got up and went to the kitchen. There was Justin sitting on the corner of the counter singing away. He had been sitting there the whole time. He didn't get into anything. It was such a sweet moment. 

I also get Justin alphabet cookies that he uses to make words with. So that has been his other recent activity. 

He has also been playing with Playdough as well. 

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Justin has been doing really well lately ! I'm constantly adding new apps on his Ipad which he absolutely loves ! The ones he doesn't like, I just delete and search for more.

He has been playing a lot on the trampoline outside.

He's always so happy ! Even if he's sick, or has some sort of pain he still has such a wonderful personality. The only time he's not, is if he is having a meltdown.

Justin has gotten extremely close to his brother lately. It's so sweet to watch them interact together !

He continues to spell words and watch lots of learning videos.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

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#autism #breakingthroughautism #aspergers #justinsautism

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Break Dance

I just watched Justin turn on the music on his Ipad, and in total unison with the app he was watching did a break dance. It was absolutely adorable ! #autism #aspergers #justinsautismchannel

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Happy, Happy, Happy

Justin has been very happy today ! He is very close to his older brother Joseph. They play together, laugh together, and wrestle together. Justin has been swinging a lot today. He's also been running and running. He continues to thrive with his favorite school app on his IPad. #autism #justinsautismchannel #aspergers

Friday, August 21, 2015

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Sensory Swings for Autistic Children



Check Out The Autism Store For All Your Autism Needs !

Meltdowns

With school starting I have been extremely busy ! Between Dr. appointments, school shopping, and lesson planning I've been going non-stop. Because of this, Justin has become aware of me having to leave. Thus, causing anxiety which has lead to meltdowns.

Not only has there been an increase in the meltdowns. If I just walk up the hallway or towards the bathroom he will start running after me yelling and making noises. If I shut the door on him, he will start crying.

I am very glad that now with school back in session, I do not have to leave him and run around much anymore ! #autism

Check out the Autism Store, for all your autism needs !

Monday, August 17, 2015

What's Been Going on Lately

I am so very proud of Justin, and the progress he has made over the last couple months. He's like a different little boy ! He hasn't got to go outside much due to the crazy combination of rain and hot weather. He's very happy inside too.

Since the removal of the gate he continues to be very well behaved, most of the time. I have discovered that he cannot have any red drink, it causes him to get very hyper. He always asks for "red."

 Potty training has been halted for now. He has stopped spitting his juice or water into other containers, thank goodness. That phase went on longer than I would have liked, lol ! #autism

 Check out the Autism Store !

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Summer's Over

I can't believe it's been over a month since I've posted ! We have gotten back into the routine of school. Justin is doing great ! I have opted to school him at home, but I am working with our local school system for several programs he's eligible for. One of which is having a special education teacher come to the house, and teach him. He also is able to have him speech and occupational therapist come to the home as well. I find this to be the best course for him, as he is most comfortable at home.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Talking

Justin has started teaching himself to talk. He's putting the sounds of letters together, saying them over and over. As a mother, I cannot begin to express how happy I am !

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Remove the Barriers

About a week ago, we opened up one of the gates leading up the hallway. He was just hopping it all the time anyway. So I Justin proofed, and he absolutely loves it !

He is so happy sitting in the family room with his brothers and sisters.

He behaves too. He doesn't touch stuff he's not supposed to.

The most amazing thing is after I did that, Justin kept giving me hugs.

He also started teaching himself to talk with his Ipad.

It's almost like a barrier has been removed mentally, and it has sparked something.

Friday, June 19, 2015

(Major) Meltdown

Yesterday, my husband and four children went out for a few hours. Justin stayed with Grandma.

He had a great time with Grandma, and was very well behaved.

Once we got home, about an hour later. Justin started crying. He had huge tears going down his cheeks, and he was inconsolable.

I took him to the couch, and just held him while he cried.

After he cried for awhile, he hit himself really hard in the head. He than looked angrily at me after he did this.

This went on for about an hour.

Afterwards, he was as happy as could be !

He hasn't had a meltdown in quite some time. I think it was prompted by the rest of the family leaving him.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Eye Doctor

Today Justin went to the eye doctor for the first time.

He was really good !

He played his Ipad in the waiting area.

He was a little apprehensive of sitting in the big chair. Once Mommy was by him he was fine. They had to look at his eyes with small round pieces of glass. They put one in front of each eye, took a flashlight and looked in them.

He got a good report, no problems with either of his eyes.

Monday, June 15, 2015

One Step Forward, Two Steps Backwards

Anybody that has an autistic child knows exactly what I mean when I say, " One step forward, two steps backwards."

You make strides toward a goal.

Most of the time, I've found it's usually something small with autistic children.

As an example, Justin was doing good with learning how to go on the potty. Than, it's like a switch went off, and we were right back to square one.

Maybe he just doesn't want to bother with it. In his mind he might be happy with going in his diaper, and not having to worry about the hassle of going in the potty.

It could be he doesn't see the purpose in it. It could just seem trivial to him.

Or, he could just be being stubborn.




Sunday, June 14, 2015

Up and Over the Gates (again)

Justin has taken climbing over the gates to a whole new level.

What was a once in awhile thing, has turned into an obsession.

The gate he tries to go over the most is the one that leads to the other part of the house.

So yesterday, I took one of my wooden gates and put it above the other gate, it worked.

I also noticed how content he became after I did that. His whole demeanor changed, and he was relaxed and calm for hours.

I think this goes to show how much (all) children need boundaries. Also, boundaries seem to be a comfort rather than an inhibitor.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Lazy Day

Today has been a lazy day for Justin.

After 3 days of swimming everyday, a day of relaxation was needed !

Justin played his ipad most of the day. He listened to music, and played his favorite apps.

He also enjoyed his new favorite potato chips too.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Swimming

Justin absolutely loves water, but for the last couple of years he would not want to get into the pool.


We have a four foot above ground pool. Once he got over the ladder, he would start crying and try to get back out.


This year, we tried it again.


The rest of us were already in the pool. Justin was playing in a little blue pool. He ran over to the big pool, climbed up the ladder and than ran back.


He proceeded to do this 3 more times. Each time getting closer to the water, until during the last couple of times he put his hand into the water.


Finally, he went over the top of the ladder. I picked him up, and slowly put him into the water. Once he was used to the water, we put him in a swimming ring that would hold him above the water.


He loved it !


I was so proud of him !


By letting him do it in his timing, and his way he over came his fear of the big pool.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Repitition

Anyone with an autistic child knows that repetition is the name of the game. This isn't just a once in awhile luxury we have as parents, this is a constant moment by moment thing.

Justin is no exception to this.

Here's some examples; Justin started putting his fingers in his mouth randomly one day. It wasn't just a once in awhile thing, it was all the time.

So I would tell him over, and over to "Take your fingers out of your mouth Justin." Every time I saw him with them in his mouth.

It took a good 2-3 weeks to break this habit.

Another example; Justin started touching his private area. I once again told him, "Justin, don't touch your pee pee," over and over.

Once I started doing this, he knew it was something he wasn't supposed to be doing. Because I would catch him trying to hide and do it. Or, if he saw me looking at him he would stop.

Once again, after a few weeks of repetition he stopped.

I think this shows how repetition day in and day out, can help alter the negative behaviors that autistic children have.





Monday, June 8, 2015

Outside Time and Dirt

Justin has been playing outside quite a bit over the last few days. He absolutely loves it !

He's just like a typical boy, digging in dirt and playing in water.


Thursday, June 4, 2015

Autistic Twins

It is one thing to have an autistic child, it's another to have twins. Justin's twin sister is not autistic, and has no delays.

They both have a special bond. When they were babies, they loved looking at each other, jabbering, and touching each other.

As they started rolling, they would roll to each other and smile and laugh at each other.

Once they were crawling, I made a play area for both of them. It was a couple hundred square feet. It was full of their toys. This lasted several months, until they became escape artists.

By the time I took down the play area, they were walking and running around.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

If You Can't Beat Him, Join Him

I wrote recently about Justin's enjoyment in spitting his juice into containers, or onto the floor.

After trying several different methods to stop this behavior, I have conceded that if you can't beat him join him. 

What I have decided to do is, instead of giving him juice. Which gets sticky all over the floor. I now give him small amounts of water in his sippy cup.

Yes, he still spits it into little containers, cars, and onto the floor. I know that if I just be patient he will grow out of this stage.

In the meantime my floor isn't ending up sticky.

I have found that sometimes going about it this way, prevents a lot of frustration on the parents and the child.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Jump, Jump, Jump, Run, Run, Run

Yesterday was an outside day. Justin loves it outside ! One of his favorite things to do is jump on the trampoline. He also enjoys digging holes, swinging, playing with water, and one of his all time favorites is running.

He will run in a big circle around the whole play area.

I don't know what it is with running, but generally autistic kids really enjoy it. Maybe they feel a sense of freedom when they run. Or maybe it's simply the pure joy of speed, and the air hitting his face.

The last couple years when we would go outside. Justin would eat handfuls of dirt. He would also pick off clover flowers, and eat them.

This year, these behaviors seem to have diminished.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Windows

In our living room, we have 6 large windows. When Justin was about a year old, he decided to climb up into one of the windows.

Well, he ended up outside on the ground crying in the rain.

After that day, I was trying to think of something to put over the windows to protect him.

Than one day it came to me, gates.

So all the windows now have gates in front of them. This has worked, he does like to climb up on the ledge of the windows. He'll hold the top of the gates, and look out.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Hearing Test

Today Justin had an appointment for a hearing test.

This was recommended by the center who tested him for autism.

This do to the fact that many times, a delay in speech can be caused by ear problems.

We were in and out in about half an hour. We sat in a darkish room, with the examiner on the other side of a window. There were three props used, each making a different noise while moving around at the same time.

He got a good report, no hearing issues !

Thursday, May 28, 2015

To School or Not to School

I have been contemplating whether or not to put Justin into public school.

I homeschool my other children.

I am wondering if it would benefit him.

My concern is he will be made fun of or teased, and not thrive in that environment.

I would love to hear your advice, stories, pros or cons about this !

My Grandma and I


Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Patience is a Virtue

Having an autistic child means needing a lot of patience.

You need patience with any child, but with an autistic child it's magnified.

Up until Justin was three and a half yrs. old he was quiet, he played by himself, and he was virtually non-verbal.

Than he started his speech and occupational therapies, and he started coming out of himself. He started talking, and he was no longer just quiet.

Which is great !

What I didn't anticipate, was some of the other behaviors that came out also. I wasn't quite prepared for the transformation.

Everyday is a different day with Justin. It takes a bounty of patience and love.

What surprised me was my ability to adjust, and how I've changed because of it is amazing. I am also a different person.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Autistic child bowling


Gate Hopping

We have three gates that block off dangerous areas from Justin. He has always known he could go over them, but he has just started doing it knowing it's a no-no.

The no aspect of it seems to fuel his ambitions even more !

One of the gates leads into the kitchen, another into the basement, and the third leads up the hallway to the other part of the house.

Once in the kitchen, he loves to turn the faucet on, and drink juice that's sitting in cups on the counter.

He never has tried to go into the basement.

His favorite gate to hop is the one leading up the hallway to the other part of the house. He likes to run into the bathroom, and play in the toilet water. He will also turn on the sink. Or, he will run into the family room.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Potty Time

About a week ago, after I changed Justin's diaper he said, "Pee." So I asked him," Do you want to go pee on the potty ? " He said, " Pee" again, so I took him to the toilet and he proceeded to pee in the toilet.

I got out the little potty chair, and he's been going pretty good. Sure he has accidents, but I didn't even know it he would be able to go in the toilet. I wondered if I'd be changing diapers when he was an adult.

I'm so proud of him, and his efforts !

It's a one step forward, two steps backwards. Any progress is good, even if it's baby steps !

Justin learning to go in potty


To Drink or Not to Drink

Justin has entered a phase where he takes his juice from his sippy cup, and spits it into other containers. Than he proceeds to drink it. Or pour it from container to container, or on the floor.

I'm at a loss how to exactly address this.

I've tried putting him in his room for a time out. I've tried giving him small amounts of juice. I've also taken the containers he's putting the juice into away.

So far, I haven't found a solution.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Baby Steps

Justin tried macaroni and cheese for the first time today, and he liked it.

Autistic children tend to be very finicky when it comes to new foods. Justin eats a handful of foods which include spaghetti O's, spaghetti and meatballs, grapes, cereal, and various snack type foods.

He has been at least trying new things lately.

He ate mashed potatoes a few nights ago for the first time too.

Friday, May 22, 2015

What it's like Having an Autistic Child

I've had people ask me, "What is it like to have an autistic child ?"

The best comparison I found is a movie.

Every day starts new, there's the opening scene. This sets the tone for the rest of the day.

Next, the plot starts to develop.

As the day continues, the plot thickens.

In Justin's case, just like a movie the day goes from scene to scene. He can be totally happy, than all of a sudden he is crying and upset. He can be in a mischievous mood, and morph into a really good mood. Some days, Justin is in a really bad mood, these days are usually the hardest.

When Justin is in a really bad mood, he does not listen to what he is told to do or not do. He also tends to do things he knows he is not supposed to do. He will do them over and over again.

Sometimes, there are days when scenes jump from one right to another with no warning.

Towards the end on a movie, usually the plot peaks and than slowly lets the viewers down.

This is the same with an autistic child. Whatever the scene has been for the day, by the end of the day it's reached it's peak and morphs into bedtime.
#autism

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Official Testing for Autism

Justin got his official diagnosis of autism last week.

It took about 3 hours. He did really well. By the last person he had to see, he was getting antsy and I could tell he was getting on overload.

He saw a psychologist, a physician, and a speech pathologist.

Most of the consultations were them asking me questions.

This surprised me, but it was explained to me that because of his age and being non-verbal you can't get a whole lot of information from the child.

Justin has been on a waiting list for about a year, so it was very nice to get him seen.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Muddy Days

We have been getting a lot of rain recently. After the rain stopped, it was 74 degrees which meant a trip outside !

Justin absolutely loves it outside. So we went out, and it was very muddy.

He found a mud pit, and the playing commenced. First he got his shoes covered, than that wasn't fun enough. Off came the shoes and socks, and in went the bare feet.

He seemed to love the sensation of the mud between his toes.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Sick Days

Justin has not been feeling well these last couple days.

He's been lying around a lot watch his favorite TV show, Caillou.

One thing that's surprising is he has been eating non-stop while he hasn't been feeling good.

He still swings on his sensory swing, and has been playing with his train quite a bit too.

He also got a "new" box to play in. He absolutely loves playing in boxes !

Friday, March 13, 2015

Spring days

We have finally hit spring like weather ! It's been in the 60's, and it feels glorious !

Justin has been loving the weather ! He has been going outside and playing.

He loves the trampoline. He runs in a huge circle for a long time. He also enjoys jumping, and jumping, and jumping !

He also likes seeking out water. He jumped right into and sat down in a sandbox filled with water from the rain.

Justin also enjoys swinging, and just running around the yard.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Snow Days

We got hit with a foot and a half of snow, and than a week later two feet of snow.

Justin absolutely loved this ! He would look out one of the huge six windows we have, and say "snowman" or "snowball."

When he went outside he would grab a handful of snow, and throw it at people. He would laugh so hard, when he would hit his siblings or mommy with his snowball.

He also loved jumping in the snow, as well as eating it !

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Hockey playing and more swinging.

Justin has been very playful lately, which you can check out on his YouTube channel Justin's Autism Channel.

He has been really into playing hockey lately. He has fisher price hockey sticks he got for his birthday. He tends to use a ball instead of the puck that came with it. He likes to play hockey with his twin sister too.

He has taken his sensory swing to a whole new level. He spins really fast while lying down in the swing. Than he'll hoist his legs up straight to go even faster.


Saturday, February 21, 2015

Happy Days

Justin has been extremely happy these last couple days.

He's been playing with some new toys. He has also been doing flips on the edge of the dining room table.

He continues to run, run, run several times a day, and also swing on his sensory swing.

He hasn't had any meltdowns recently.

We got about a foot and a half of snow, and he keeps looking outside saying "snow," and "snowman."

He has also started saying, "diaper change" letting me know when he's dirty or wet. I am going to working on potty training soon.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

The Looks From Other People

I had my first experience of the looks from other people. Justin was at his therapy, which he goes to a local school to get. While waiting, he made a noise and I got the look.

This look is something I think anybody with any sort of disabled child understands.

For a moment I was insulted, but than I realized that I just don't care !

People will have their opinions of my son, but I love him with all my heart. That's all that matters !

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Another Day

Justin continued with most of his usual activities. He played with his train. He ran, ran, ran with his music playing. This is one of his favorite things to do. It seems to bring him a lot of happiness.

He enjoys laying in the sun too. We have six large windows, and he will find a spot and lay there. I think this has something to do with a sensory issue. He will also lay right up against the heater, covered up with a blanket.

He of course did a lot of swinging on his sensory swing. His new thing is spinning really fast on it.

He also did a lot of playing on his computers. He has taught himself how to spell, talk, the sounds of letters, and numbers on his various computers. We haven't had any meltdowns recently.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Playing in Boxes

There is just something about an empty box that I think appeals to all children ! I've found that autistic children like an empty box even more than the average child.

Autistic children tend to prefer closed, quiet, dark spaces.

A box provides the perfect environment for playing, sleeping, or just hanging out.

Justin is no exception ! He has a very large box in his room, with a child size fold out couch inside of it. He absolutely loves it.

He also has one in the living room.

At night time Justin will wrap himself in a cocoon with his blanket, and sleep all night like that.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Justin Missing His Mommy

Justin's been having a couple pretty calm days. He's been just playing with his toys, and being his wonderful self !

Yesterday he did have a moment because I had been gone for a good majority of the day. So once I got home he came up to me, and started crying. I held him and he said, "Mommy gone." He cried for about 20 minutes.

I am usually home with him all day, so this change was very upsetting to him.

He is such an affectionate little boy. Some children with autism don't like contact. Such as hugging or even just a touch. I feel very blessed that I am able to hug him !

Sunday, February 8, 2015

The Mad Scramble

Every morning when Justin wakes up, the first thing he does is bring out half his toys from his room.

He will not stop until he has every toy out that he wants. This is usually about  5-7 minute process, which looks like a mad scramble.

He runs full speed back and forth in almost a frenzied state. If you try to stop or delay this process, he will get very upset and start crying and throwing a "fit."

He also does this before he can go to bed too.

The scramble begins, back and forth until every toy is back in his room. Usually he'll grab some extra toys too that he didn't originally take out in the morning.

Every morning and night, the mad scramble happens !

Justin Singing the Alphabet


Friday, February 6, 2015

Justin's Food Likes and Dis-likes

One thing about autistic children is a majority of them have very select tastes, and many only like a few foods. Texture also plays a big part in what is liked and not liked. Justin is no exception !

When he was a baby, he likes everything. As he got older, his choices changed. He had a very sensitive stomach as a baby. After he would nurse, he would a lot of times spit back up a majority of what he just ate. This is another thing that is common with autistic children. Having problems with their gastrointestinal tracts.

So now at four years old, Justin's favorite foods are spaghetti o's, spaghetti, pizza, grapes, apples, and strawberries. He won't eat much else other than snack types of foods like pretzels, goldfish, and he loves cereal.



Autistic Child Playing With Piano


Thursday, February 5, 2015

Justin's First Sentence !

We were on the way to therapy, and Justin said, "Look Mommy, the sun." Up until this point he had only put two, very rarely three words together to form a sentence.

In his therapy he was much more verbal than normal too.

To someone who doesn't have a child on the spectrum, this may seem trivial. To those of us with children on the spectrum, this is a huge milestone !

I am so proud of Justin ! Even though there are hard days, the good days out weigh the bad ones.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

The Barriers

Justin likes to climb, and get into things he's not supposed to. So we've had to implement barriers to keep him safe, and out of things he's not supposed to be into.

One of these barriers is gates. We have an open floor plan, so in the area that leads to the other parts of the house is gated off. There are 3 gates total. One leading into the kitchen, another at the top of the basement stairs, and the final gate is leading up the hallway towards the bedrooms and bathrooms.

I had a specialist come out and give me some advice, and he recommended keeping the gates as long as needed. He explained how even though Justin could easily climb over the gates. It is a security thing for him.

The other barriers is around the kitchen cabinets. There is an opening where you can see into the living room. Justin started pulling himself up onto the counters, and getting into the cabinets. So, the solutions was lattice. We bought one big sheet at Lowe's, and had it cut down to the size needed and put up.

The final barrier is around the fish tank, and decorative shelves in the living room. Justin got where he was pulling himself up onto the fish tank, and getting into the water. So I bought thick poster board, and taped it around the front and sides of the fish tank. I also put this poster board around the decorative shelves around the TV. Because he was getting into the things on the shelves.

After putting up these barriers, there is no more problems with Justin trying to get into things he's not supposed to. And, it also keeps him safe.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Justin Spelling on His Computer


Check out Justin's other videos on his YouTube channel, Justin's Autism Channel.

Another Day in the Life of Justin

Justin spent most of his day doing his favorite things. Swinging in his swing and listening to music.
He has started something new, at least once or twice a day he will run, and run, and run around the living room as fast as he can. He usually has one of his music toys with him as he's running.

He has started pulling himself up onto the counter, and getting into the drawers in the kitchen. Once he starts he gets himself all worked up, and won't stop.

He usually ends up having to go into his room because he becomes fixated, and won't stop.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Meltdowns Have Stopped

Justin's evening meltdowns have stopped. I've noticed he's become very attached to me (his mom.) If he sees me leaving the room, he'll run to me yelling "Mommy !" He'll pull my shirt to get me to stay in the room he is in.

At night time, he will come lay with me on the couch. This is his newest routine.

Justin is a very affectionate child. Some children on the spectrum do not like to be hugged or touched. This is due to the sensory issues that all autistic children possess in one form or another.



Monday, January 26, 2015

Justin Has a Twin Sister

Justin has a twin sister named Rebecca. She does not exhibit any autistic symptoms. They are very close, and Rebecca tries to play and communicate with Justin.

You can tell it gets frustrating for her sometimes, because his vocabulary is extremely limited. Their play usually involves running around chasing each other, swinging together in the sensory swing, and dancing together.

Justin will go up to Rebecca, and lay his head on her and hug her. He likes to get close to her face and smile at her, and she smiles back at him.

There is definitely a strong bond between them even with their differences.

Justin in His New Sensory Swing !


Sunday, January 25, 2015

More Music

Justin's been continuing to show his love of music. He spent about an hour on his favorite piano. Listening to different pre-programed songs, and adjusting the beat faster and slower.

As he was doing this, he would get in his sensory swing and swing until the song stopped. Than he would get up, push another song and swing again.

After he got tired of doing that, he went to his other toys that play music and continued on. This went on and off for most of the day.

It was a pretty content laid back day for him with no meltdowns.

At the end of the day he found his glow worm, and it needed batteries. After we changed his batteries, he listened to it and sang with it for about 45 minutes while being held.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Autism in Children, the Beginning Symptoms of Autism

For More Autisim Info, Follow This Link !

Justin's New Sensory Swing

In one of Justin's therapy sessions, his occupational therapist suggested getting a sensory swing for home. He loves swinging in it in therapy. So we got him one for only $38.00 on Amazon.

It is mounted to our ceiling and he absolutely loves it. It does have a calming effect on him.

His therapist told me that swinging him back and forth helps relax him. Being autistic children struggle with sensory overload, this is an extremely important tool for him.

Watch for a video soon of Justin in his swing !

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Therapies

Justin has speech and occupational therapy on Wednesday's. He really enjoys these times ! He started these therapies in October of 2014. The difference has been amazing !

He went from being almost non-verbal in October, to now putting 2 and 3 words together to make sentences.

He also has a behavior specialist come over to the house bi-weekly. This helps specifically with things like transitioning from task to task. Pretty much any behaviors that need development.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Art

Yesterday was a very artsy day for Justin. He played playdoh, and created about 10 pages of art. Most of it was him writing his ABC's, which are one of his very favorite things ! He absolutely loves letters !

His other love is shapes. He draws houses and trains out of shapes that he's learned. He teaches himself this from his computers.

#autism #autism in children #symptoms of autism #autism symptoms #autistic child playing #autistic spectrum disorder #children with autism #videos of autistic children

Tuesday, January 20, 2015


More meltdowns

Every evening Justin has began having a meltdown. This has been going on for the last 3 nights. I'm not for sure what prompts these meltdowns. Other than he seems to be trying to find something.

Last nights meltdown lasted about half an hr. He calmed down by swinging in his indoor swing while listening to a toy that plays classical music.

Monday, January 19, 2015


Happiness

Justin is so incredibly happy all the time ! He's such a blessing to our family. He's very easy going.

There are times when he gets into a "non-listening" phase. When he does, he intentionally does stuff he knows is a "no-no."

Usually, he won't stop until he has a time out in his room.
Check him out on YouTube !

Sunday, January 18, 2015

What is an Autistic Meltdown ?

Some people view a meltdown as a tantrum or just acting out. Actually, this is the furthest thing from the truth.

Each child with autism is uniquely and wonderfully individual. So there's not any one specific thing that universally causes a meltdown.

Generally, a meltdown is caused by a sensory overload of some sort. These overloads are of the senses touch, sound, and sight.

It's hard to know how to handle these meltdowns. It takes trial and error. Talking with the specialists involved in your child's life is what I've found to be the most helpful.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

The Wake-up and Go to Bed Routine

Every morning when Justin wakes up, he has to bring out about 20 of his toys. He has become obsessed with this. He becomes almost in a trance, and it's very important to him.

He won't stop until he has every computer, musical toy, and learning toy out of his room.

When it's bed time, we go through the same process. Every toy must be brought back into his room.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Just Justin


Meltdowns

Justin has went a long time without a meltdown, but yesterday he made up for not having a meltdown by having a huge one.

I don't think anything prepares you for an autistic meltdown.

Yesterday, he was extremely focused on one specific thing; a small ball of blue play dough.  He was so excited until, he lost it.

He started crying, screaming and yelling "blue ball" over and over again. Well, we couldn't find it. The crying and yelling went on for about an hour. Until he finally fell asleep.

Justin Keeping Time to Music With His Feet.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Autistic Children and Their Love of Water.

Justin has entered a new phase of playing in the kitchen sink. He hops the gate, climbs on the stool and covers himself from head to toe with water.

This becomes a game for him. Try to get into the kitchen before I can "catch" him.

This can become frustrating for me because I can't leave that side of the house without having my kitchen and kid doused in water.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

After the Autism diagnosis.

Once I accepted that something wasn't quite right with Justin. There was a time of extreme sadness, almost like that of a mourning. Nothing prepares you for there being something wrong with your child.

Once there is no more denial, and you have faced the facts of what is, and the mourning, and guilt are done. I switched that energy into full force for Justin.

I took him to his pediatrician, and got a referral to a autism specialist. Than I found out that there was about a year wait. That was unacceptable that my son wouldn't even be tested until almost 5 yrs. old.

I called Justin's insurance company, and talked to them about this issue.

Long story short, I was able to go out of network and have his insurance pay for it. Because it was considered medically necessary, and I didn't just accept waiting a year.

About a month after I called the insurance company, Justin was tested.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

More playing in the room.


Playing in my room !

The Beginning

When you have a new baby you are so excited at this new little person, and life that is yours. This was no exception with Justin. He was special in the fact that he has a twin sister. I had a healthy pregnancy, only gained 40 pounds and carried them to 39 1/2 weeks.

Once I had my epidural, within 15 minutes our first twin Rebecca was born. Than, 7 minutes later Justin was brought into the world.

From this point on, everything was a blur of diapers, feedings, and clothes changes.

Justin was "the perfect baby." He was happy, easy going, only cried when he was hungry. There was nothing that screamed "autism," until Justin reached around a year old.

Justin's vocabulary was only one word, if you held him he would arch his back away from you, and he would crawl around with his head on the ground for extended periods of time. He was also intrigued by wheels.

I must add, that it wasn't until he was about 3 that I admitted to myself that something wasn't right. I was in denial that my "baby" had anything wrong.

Justin's Instagram