This week’s #WOTW and #R2BC

Another Friday looming, a chance to think about what’s been making me smile this week and sum it up in one word.

  
Sorted.   That would be my word and here’s why:

1.   The major issue for me that’s being sorted this week is the matter of D’s ongoing injections.   The fact that we were severely let down by the pharmacy responsible for repeat prescriptions meant that an injection didn’t happen in August.  This has had physical and emotional consequences for D and it hasn’t done much for my wellbeing either!

The decision to involve the Pharmacy Regulator was a tough one but a necessary one.  Tough because I don’t like telling tales but necessary because we are by no means the only families  affected by their mismanagement of medications and prescriptions that are really vital to individuals.  

I popped into the surgery to pick up D’s prescriptions and say the pharmacy regulator inspector may be asking them about our case, they (doctors receptionist) apologised to me for it all – they didn’t need to – and said they’d had many complaints about the pharmacy.  She also said “Good for you for taking it forward”, it made me feel that my involving the regulators was justified and that I’m not just doing it for us, it’s anyone who’s also been affected.

The regulators are a bit like inspectors, going in to gauge practices, staff training  be and administration.   They aren’t compensation chasers and that’s not why I alerted them.

So, to pop the prescriptions into a different chemist, have confidence that we’ll be sorted and okay for her injection going forward is a massive relief. 

2.  Both T and D have returned to school, one more enthusiastically (D) than the other, although both had worries of varying degrees this morning.

D’s new teacher is great and she’s fully up to speed on the injection fiasco.  

T is now a year 8, not so much a newbie, now aware of where he needs to be and when.  This next school year will be when he’ll start to choose his options as pupils in his school take their exams a year early – which makes me feel old as I remember very clearly my options meeting.

3.  The football saga still rumbles on but T will have the option of staying within the club or one or two other teams.   He just wants to know where and when and who for, as opposed to all the politics.

4.  I love my children and would go to the moon and beyond for them, strapping on that metaphorical suit of armour that is necessary but ….

To have a peaceful Costa coffee accompanied by a magazine and then a browse around the shops was wonderful! No stern looks and comments from T because I’d deviated from the timetable of events that he needs and no sensory overload from D because there was strangers around.  Just me.   I found a couple of great signs:

   
 
I especially like the “smile til your face hurts” phrase.   

I also found these:

  
and they made me smirk in a “oooh, they look like b**bs” way.   I couldn’t tell you what they were really for! 

How’s your week been? 

Relief – Weds 2nd Sept 2015

Oh my, relief aplenty today, concerning the lovely D:

  
There she is, smiling outside school under her favourite tree.   It’s one we use as a “marker” on our school walk and, at this time of year, we have a conker watch too.  D loves to find shiny conkers and they’ll be placed in her bag, to be painted and admired at a later date.

That smile hides a lot of anxieties before we left for school.   You name it about the new term start, she was worried.  Her new backpack is a winner (phew) and she looked very grown up with it on her back.

Her classroom is very close to last term’s and, after a few huuuuge cuddles, she headed off with a smiling TA.

Fast forward to the end of the day and there was a happy D waiting for me.   She’d enjoyed her first day and her new teacher said she’d been very helpful (bless her).  That was a big relief, as well as the chance I got to have a quick chat about the whole injections fiasco and the repercussions of that – which are affecting D in various degrees.   

Relief too for me that I handed over the prescriptions for September and October to a different pharmacy.  Relief that they were being processed and that she’ll (hopefully) be okay going forwards.

And we do it all over again tomorrow with T’s first day back.  He’ll no longer be an overwhelmed year 7, but a more confident year 8.   Knowing where each subject area is, knowing where the coach drops off and picks up.   Knowing familiar faces and the routine.

A tired D tonight, some anxieties about her PE lesson tomorrow, she’s anticipating that secondary PE is harder than primary.  Once she’s in the hall, with the PE teachers who are familar with her anxieties about change and motor issues, she’ll be okay.   I know she will.

Relief all round Jx 

Small Steps Amazing Achievements – 2/9/15 #SSAmazingAchievements

Welcome to this week’s Small Steps Amazing Achievements, as Jane at @OurLitEscapades and I co-host fortnightly, this week it’s my turn.  

Thank you to everyone who linked up last week, we enjoyed reading your posts.

If this is your first time reading this, you can find out about the Small Steps Amazing Achievements linky here, we do hope you join in. Posts can be old or new and please don’t forget to visit and comment on other posts too.

Here’s the badge code if you’d like to grab it:

“Our
<div align="center"><a href="http://ourlittleescapades.com/small-steps-amazing-achievements/" title=“Our Little Escapades" target="_blank"><img src="http://i1322.photobucket.com/albums/u565/EthansEscapades/Wordpress%20Blog/SmallSteps_zps72385117.jpg" alt=“Our Little Escapades" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

Jane and I enjoy reading and commenting on your posts and sharing them via the #SSAmazingAchievements hashtag.

Here are Jane’s highlights from last week:

“There were some lovely updates this last week:

Little Miss turned 10 months old over at @BecomingaSAHM,

and Son son is now 21 months old, with a post from @mummy_madness1.

There was a big move into their own bedroom at @okesanne

and Piglet has also taken those very important first steps @babyorbankrupt

and lastly The baby is using some very important words at @SillyMummy88.”

We always find it difficult to choose a few to highlight as the posts linked up are always so wonderfully varied, but you can read them all here.

We can’t wait to read what your children have achieved this week.



The Return – Tues 1st Sept 2015

Our lovely D,

It doesn’t seem just over six weeks ago that we were counting down to the end of term and the start of the summer holidays.   It really doesn’t.

I’m sure the weeks don’t whizz by as fast when you’re at school!

This term end just gone was bittersweet because it was your last term in Primary.   Tomorrow you start in Secondary.

Thankfully this doesn’t mean a change of schools, a differing journey or an acceptance of new surroundings and lots of new faces.   Potentially just a change of classroom to the secondary corridor and access to more lunchtime clubs, which were only for secondary pupils – such as Beauty club (you like the sound of that!).  You’ve already had play times in the “big” playground and lunchtimes in the “big” hall, a chance to get used to lots more pupils around and the sensory issues that inevitably brings.

For your ex peers in mainstream, it’s a big day for them, I dread to think how you would have coped in a secondary mainstream environment.   The answer is you wouldn’t have.   It would have been a case of home-schooling.

Not that you would have minded home-schooling!  As you’ve told me so many times today, you’re going to miss our cuddles.   I will too but I’m going to focus on that big-big cuddle you’ll spring on me at 3.15pm tomorrow afternoon.   Although I don’t know where I’ll be standing yet as we don’t know where your classroom will be until we get to school tomorrow morning.  

You know who your teachers will be and one of the TAs is your absolute favourite in school!  It was she who taught you the “see you later, alligator” saying and she’s always got a huge smile for you.  Similarly you know who’ll be with you, not unfortunately the pupil you’ve been with in every class ever since you first joined the school, not the little chappie who sees himself as your “main boyfriend”, but other friends, including one who had a bit of a “she’s my girlfriend … no, she’s mine” with afore-mentioned little chappie at your birthday party!

Dad came home with something yummy for your lunchbox tomorrow and you’ll enjoy that, together with the “reddest apples in the world” that we picked out on Sunday.   Snow White would be tempted by them for sure, there isn’t a hint of green in them!

Your fab new school bag is waiting for Bunny to be put in the special pocket we’ve found and there’ll also be this:

  
that I made for you today.  Something you can look at and squeeze if you’re missing home too much.

It’s been lovely spending the summer with you, you’ll have a fab day tomorrow, catching up with your classmates and playing in the playground (if it’s not raining).   You will.   Even if you don’t think so at the moment, even if we have a stressed walk to school tomorrow (at least the two schools we have to go past aren’t back until the following day).   

You will.   And we look forward to hearing all about it tomorrow.   Let’s just hope the next six years or so don’t go by as fast.

You might be nearly as tall as me (you are), with feet nearly as large as mine (not quite but close), but you’ll always be our lovely D, our cuddly D who started SN school too stressed and overwhelmed to have tried to learn to read in mainstream, who now reads everything and your little bag you take on trips out always has at least three books in it, sometimes four.

We’re proud of you xx

  

Hey ho – Mon 31st Aug 2015

You can’t beat the typical Bank Holiday weather, can you?

The last day of August, travel backed up in all directions as the festival traffic makes its weary way home and rain, lots of it.

It made me realise that it hasn’t really been warm enough to inflate the pool at all this summer holiday, maybe there’ll be a bit of a late one and T and D will be able to jump in and cool off after school sometime.  I think this must be the first summer that we haven’t had the pool out once.

A total contrast to last year where I could barely get them out of the water for meals and T got reprimanded for not wearing a jumper to school on his first day because it was that warm.

But, it’s not been all that bad, having a day at home, the four of us.  The Bank Holiday meaning no football matches to go to and no work calls.

D – whether she’s feeling apprenshive about returning to school or whether it’s the non-injection effects coming through – is still decidedly fragile.  She’ll say she “feels strange” but not articulate further, it will make for a clock-watching day on Wednesday that’s for sure!  T returns on Thursday and any school talk is met with an “okay” in that “I just don’t want to know about all that now” tone, he’s perfecting that one very well.

Hopefully tomorrow will bring brighter skies and a non-strange feeling D.

  

Measuring Up – Sun 30th Aug 2015

One of the “joys” of preparing to send T and D back to school is shoes.   Do they still fit? Will new ones be needed and (more importantly) will either of them be able to cope with a busy, noisy Clarks store full of parents and their children trying to get sorted too, maybe getting impatient at the length of time they’ve been waiting.

Every time D and I have ventured into town, we’ve gone into Clarks, seen the amount of people waiting via their ticket system and thought against it.   Yes, I know they operate an appointment system but she wouldn’t have wanted to be in that sensory-overloaded environment, appointment or not.  And she’d tell me she didn’t want to be there and I’d just know that it would be extremely difficult to get those important measurements.

So, we waited until this afternoon and headed to our local Clarks, thankfully after the busy monthly car boot sale was winding down, so there were nowhere near as many people around.

D wears trainers to school as uniform isn’t compulsory in her SN school, thank goodness and she did extremely well with the measuring on their electronic devices.   I hadn’t said to the assistant about her autism but he seemed to gather from the gentle way we talked to her and the fact she needed instructions repeated several times, that she was SN.

And yep, she’s gone up another half size and this is where the fun starts….. D has been in grown-up shoes size for ages, despite only being 11 and a bit, she’s now nearly as tall as me and catching up in every other aspect.   

It’s now at the stage where she’s at the end scale of bright, funky trainers and finding some with Velcro is even more of a challenge.

So, we’ve ordered in a Velcro purple pair (not my influence, that was the only colour) and a lovely irridescent silver pair, which are lace ups.

She can’t do laces but I know, just know, that she prefers these, because of the colour.  Having looked online, this does seem to be a common issue, ie that children and young adults with motor delays/issues have problems with laces.

What does anyone reading this do? Is there something that keeps the laces intact? 

The last thing I would want is for her to not notice they’re loose and fall over in the playground.   Yes, there will no doubt be TAs around to help, but there is that issue of D having the confidence to seek assistance, that’s been an ongoing one all through school, no matter how comfortable she may seem (it brews up inside).

Maybe the answer is to get both, but if there is an overriding preference for one pair, the other will be overlooked, won’t it.

Would welcome any laces experiences anyone reading this has.   T only learnt a couple of years ago and stubbornly refuses to accept advice that his laces may be trailing, but his sister (D) will need something else, whether it be some sort of cover over the knot – is there one? – I’ve got no idea.

Still, I guess it’s another back-to-school thing off the list anyway, despite the potential complications.
   
 
Despite my love of all things purple, I prefer the silver ones too, shame they’re not in my size! 

Normality – Sat 29th Aug 2015

For the first time since the summer holidays began, D and I have had our “normal” Saturday.

The menfolk headed off to a football game before lunch (no playing for T, his season hasn’t started yet and we’re still unsure about which club he’ll end up with) and D and I had a day at home, just us.

She was a relaxed little thing, asking for spellings and singing along to a song she’d heard hours before.  Her new backpack arrived today for school too and she got extremely excited because she chose it and it’s covered in a jewel design (she does love her small, sparkly plastic gems).  She’s said she’ll be okay with a backpack, as opposed to her current hold-all but I do wonder exactly who will be backpacking it after the first few days!
  
And my day started with a takeaway but brought home mocha, fab just fab!

Sleep Tickle – Fri 28th Aug 2015

We have a new little occurrence here in the Bluecrisps household, that of the Sleep Tickle.

What’s a Sleep Tickle?

Well, it has taken D until virtually the end of the school holidays to accept a little bit of a lie in, in the morning.  Sound familiar or just us?

Whereas T will happily snore well past his usual wake-up time and beyond, D has kept to her routine.  And I’ve either had some spooky sixth sense and woken up just as her smiling face appears around the doorway, or been woken up with a jolt as she bounces beside me.

Today, it was that usual early time but unusually she was happy to read whilst having a cuddle and I had a doze.  Apparently I was tickling her whilst dozing, kind of I guess like one of the cats when they’re dreaming and their paws start twitching.   Who knew that I sleep tickle? Certainly not me.

D remembering that got us through a very busy trip to town, via the hospital to pick up her melatonin.   It was packed, absolutely rammed with festival goers and families.   Why had we picked today? Well, the weather had put me off earlier in the week, that and the start of my Teatox which meant I didn’t want to be far from home (shall we say).

There was squeaks and squeals of discomfort.   There was downright reluctance to go anywhere where it was likely to be busy (most places) and there was relief and a visibly more relaxed D when we got home.

And in wonderfully typical “live in the moment” D-style, there were no “worst bits” at teatime for D (or T), instead “sleep tickles” became one of the funniest.

Enjoy the long weekend!

  

Fansy A Cuppa? #WOTW #R2BC

Yep, I’ve spelt “fancy” wrong, it’s on purpose – although the WP automatic spelling checker thingy did not like that at all.

It’s Thursday, nearly the weekend (yay!) but also nearly the end of the last holiday week before T and D head back to school (one on Weds, one on Thurs) and I get a chance to head back to the gym.
  
My word for this week is “Cuppa”, bizarre if you know me in real life because I do not like tea usually, in any shape, smell or form.   The smell along is enough to put me off and it’s a rarity that I will make Hubbie a cuppa because of that.  

 (I’ve just realised that that probably counts me out of ever working in a coffee shop… anything you’d like to tell us? Yes, the smell of tea makes me retch….okay, “thanks” for coming in!)

  
But that’s all changed this week, as you’ll see from the picture above, I’ve been on a teatox.  Apologies in advance if you’re eating whilst reading this. 

My reasons were partly as an experiment to see if I could bring myself to drink the stuff and partly because I’ve tried colon cleansers before and they’ve always been (shall we say) effective.   I would love to try out the “hosepipe up your innards” just to see the after effects, no not those (!), more how I’d feel afterwards but haven’t plucked up the courage to give it a try.

So, on that note (sorry), let’s do positive thoughts and say how the week has gone:

1. Afore-mentioned cuppa

Now, these don’t taste as bad as I thought they would although it was a bit of a grimace moment when I first tried them.   It’s one cuppa in the morning for 14 days and one evening one, on alternate nights (so 7).

The first day wasn’t too bad but the second (after the evening one too on the first evening) ….. goodness me! Let’s just say it worked and, if it had been a return to school day, I would have had to make arrangements for D.   

Since then, all is calmer and I presume the bags are happily working away.  I’ve got used to starting my day with a cuppa too.

2.  Fascinating Butterflies

  
This is where the “fansy” comes in of the title.

I have a bit of a “thing” for fascinators, even more so as my hair has suffered this year, following my two months or so when I couldn’t eat properly.

The one above isn’t for everyday use (no kidding!) but it’s one I saw in Debenhams ages ago, loved it, walked away and then spent weeks wishing I hadn’t.  By that time it was out of stock and there started an eBay stalking to see if there were any.

(eBay btw is fantastic for fascinators! There are so many people (it seems) who buy their special outfit, wear it and then stick it all on eBay.   Well worth a look.   It does backfire though, be sure the listing says “comes from a smoke free home” unless you want that effect as the package is opened.)

And then, last weekend, I was having a browse online at Debenhams and there it was!  In stock and in the sale too.  I clicked away as fast as I could and then wondered if it would arrive, because it disappeared from the website again.   Worry not.  It did and it is wonderful, lots of multi-coloured butterflies and, okay, it’s something that won’t be worn that much, but I know of a certain butterfly-loving girl who will happily dance around in it if I ever tire of it (I won’t).

3.  Football

After last week’s disappointment with T’s team disbanding, it all went a bit quiet for a few days.   I thought once we’d sent the final email out, it would be acknowledged and that would be it.  I was surprised at how darn protective of the (what was left of them) team I felt when someone (not us) tried to manhandle them into a situation.   Grrr.

T has just come back from a trial training session with a team and he has another tomorrow, so he should still be able to play, it’s just the question of where and who with.

I’ve also been asked to help out with Comms and Events at the club, who tried so hard to keep the team together, so that could be interesting!

Obviously we are extremely relieved that T should still be playing one way or another.   He hasn’t liked hearing all the debate about one team versus another, he just wants to be told he’s playing and that’s it.   Understandably he’s been demoralised (we all have) but hopefully there is a way forward for him.  

4.   Our Lovely D

Has been very cuddly this week, a bit down as the consequences of her not having her injection start to become apparent.   I’m very glad she’s been at home, cuddles on tap are far better then she feeling miserable at school and me worrying how she’s getting on, aren’t they?

Now I never ever thought I’d have a tea-related WOTW, but there you go!  How’s your week been? 

Trigger – Weds 26th Aug 2015

D’s memory seems very complex to me.  On the one hand, she only has to hear a song being played once for her to memorise the tune and (her interception of the) lyrics, on the other, unless she has a visual prompt, it’s very hard for her to remember what happened a few hours ago.  

The song/lyric aspect is really amazing, the song will have been on a music channel the day before or even longer and suddenly D will burst into whistling or humming the tune and singing the lyrics.   It can range from a (really quite) random to a popular song, the common denominator being that it would have recently been on Vintage TV – even if the rest of us couldn’t remember watching it.

There was a trigger of a different kind today, one that reminded her of her hefty trike fall last September, unfortunately.   It was an episode of Friends, the one in which George Clooney guest stars as a doctor.   

  

She got extremely upset that it reminded her of her trike accident and was then worried for the character (Rachel) who was injured.   Poor D.
I’m glad that she told me straight away, rather than bottling it all up (which is an issue during school).  

It makes me wonder whether, if she sees someone falling over in the playground and getting upset, it then reminds her of her trike fall and those emotions are gone over and over in her head, until she sees me and there’s an unhappy bolt, as her emotions bubble over.

There isn’t an answer, but as ever, I’m extremely grateful that she is verbal.   The “guess the trigger” game would be extremely difficult were she not.