Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Halloween Safety

Happy Halloween! Today is a day of fun, overwhelming activities and way to much candy! All of this can result in tough days to follow as children are overstimulated, sick from too much candy and tired from decreased sleep. It's important to remember to:
  • limit the amount of candy your child eats each day
  • eat a good meal before going out
  • get home early so they can get to bed on time
  • have some calming activities planned for when you get home so they are able to sleep when bed time arrives, such as reading books, taking a quick bath, or playing some calming music while getting ready for bed.
In addition to helping your child stay regulated through the craziness of the day, it's also important to make sure your child is safe. Click here for more information on things you can do to ensure your child stays safe while trick or treating.

Have a fun evening!
Michelle

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Our biggest problems come when we fail to keep perspective

Here's something to think about:

"We often spend so much time coping with problems along our path that we only have a dim or even inaccurate view of what's really important to us." — Peter Senge

Monday, October 29, 2007

Halloween Is Approaching...

This afternoon, I received an email from a concerned mother regarding Halloween. She was wondering what my thoughts were on her son's participation in his school's party and trick or treating. As many of you can well imagine, Halloween is a very unpredictable day for all children. The level of uncertainty is very high. I am sure many of you are wondering if your child will be able to cope with the events of Halloween and I would like to offer some suggestions. First, if your child struggles with uncertainty, please keep this in mind when planning your holiday festivities. Second, don't let them participate in activities that will over stimulate them too much. It will be important to guide your child through the festivities and to help them regulate and re-regulate themselves as needed. Third, if you find your child becoming anxious, please use strategies that you have learned to reduce their anxiety. Remember, if they are anxious and you then become anxious, it will only make matters worse. Lastly, if you find yourself and your child enjoying Halloween activities together, end the activities on a good note. Do not plan a strenuous schedule that you have to get through. Try a couple of activities, if they go well, then call it a night.

I hope you find these Halloween tips helpful. Please be safe! Happy Fall!

Courtney

Thursday, October 25, 2007

HearthSong

I felt like talking about something fun for my blog this week so when I received the new HearthSong catalog in the mail yesterday I knew it was just what I was looking for. I’m not sure how many of you get this catalog, but it is great.

I think Nicole made a great point in her blog this week about all those ways that we used to “waste time” when we were kids and how many kids these days have no idea what to do with extra time if their electronic devices are not available. I too remember spending hours just “wasting time” with the friends in my neighborhood or with my sister. I loved taking trips with my family and searching for license plates.

This doesn’t mean that I didn’t have toys or never watched tv, but I feel like there was a good balance between tv time and “wasted time.” Wow did my friends and I come up with some creative ways to use our toys and everyday items. This is why I love the HearthSong catalog so much. All of the toys in it inspire creativity and imagination.

It makes me want to be a kid again, but that is the great thing about RDI I can be even if it is for just a little while. Check out the HearthSong website I’m sure you will be able to find something that your child will enjoy and amazingly enough they don’t sell electronic devices. One of the even greater things about this catalog is that everything is very reasonably priced.

The website is www.hearthsong.com. Enjoy!

Talk to you soon,
Erin

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Spoofs

Today I received an e-mail from my sister-in-law that I needed to call some 800 number to register my cell phone to get on some do not call list. This was news to me, and it isn't often that you are notified via e-mail about this type of information. Sure enough I get on http://www.snopes.com and saw that this was in fact a spoof. It's a great website to use by the way when you are unsure about the validity of an e-mail.

Isn't it amazing how many spoofs are out there? Just in our e-mails alone, I get dozens of e-mails a day telling me I won some big inheritance, or that my e-bay account has some fraud taking place. "Please respond immediately". Do you know how often I hear from Bank of America - I'm not even sure why and I receive job offers daily! I'm not even looking for a job!

Spoofs, they are everywhere. How often in autism alone do you see quick fix solutions. 2 weeks of dolphin therapy and your child will, well be swimming with dolphins, but I'm sorry, still very much have autism. I could go on and on about compensation strategies that can make your child look better or get her through the day, but in the end will still very much have autism. Remediating the core deficits over several years (remember it's a marathon) is the only way that your child will receive life changing progress that can end in an improved quality of life.

What programs are you looking at now that might offer that quick fix or promises great results? Make sure to not to just jump at these promises in hopes of a cure. Don't get caught up in the spoofs of autism treatment. What are your hopes and dreams for your child? What is it really going to take to make that happen?

Until next week,
Michelle

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Time Wasters or Awesome Opportunities?


I recently came across an online article about ways to spend time while waiting with a child. The title of the article was "Time Wasters," but as I read through the list it occurred to me that all of them would be awesome RDI(r) opportunities. Many of them brought me back to my own childhood - trying on my Mom's watch and rings during long church services, looking for signs on car trips with my siblings, having contests to see if we could make each other laugh while waiting for food in restaurants...those were the days! I don't know how much kids today have the opportunity to do these things now that our society is so consumed with doing something every moment. When we are faced with having to wait we tinker with our phones, i-pods, or other gadgets. If parents know their children are going to have to wait they arm them with game boys and portable DVD players. I wonder if these great "time wasters" that we enjoyed as children are on their way to extinction. It's a shame because these little activities provide tons of opportunities for reciprocal engagement, emotion sharing, collaboration, negotiation, experience-sharing communication, problem solving, and flexibility. Think of all the things you could spotlight by arm wrestling, making funny faces, or playing "telephone."

The complete list of 101 "time waster" ideas can be found at this link: http://specialchildren.about.com/od/behaviorstrategies/a/timewasters.htm

In the meantime, here are a few to think about and try:
  • Thumb wrestle
  • Draw letters or pictures or words on your child's back or arm and have them guess
  • Take off your child's socks and use them as puppets
  • Let your child try on your wristwatch or jewelry
  • Play "I Spy"
  • Sort and/or count change in your purse or pockets
  • Have a staring contest
  • Blow imaginary bubbles
  • Show your child the pictures in your wallet
Think about your own memories from childhood - how did you and your family and friends "waste time?" Pick a few of these little activities and try them with your kids this week. Turn time that might otherwise be wasted on electronic stimulation, static interests, or your kids driving you crazy into time for cognitive growth and emotion sharing experiences. Please share your memories and "time waster" activities in the comments section - we want to hear them!

Until next week,
Nicole

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Finding Balance

“The whole practice of yoga – the breathing, the postures, the meditation – is about balancing your life.” - Ani Kolfoyan

I know of several of our clients who use yoga as a way to find balance in their lives. I have even done a bit of yoga myself from time to time and it really does help center and calm me. Yoga isn’t for everyone, but finding balance should be. Everyone needs to find their own way to balance their lives.

Finding balance is truly important for without it we can burn out, get short tempered, get sick, be depressed and forget about ourselves. In this day and age there are so many things pulling us in so many different directions – work, family, church, friends, and on and on the list goes. This makes finding balance even more important. That is why we talk about schedules with each family and work toward helping you to slow down and find time for yourself.

None of us can go 24/7 and expect to be effective at anything. Finding a way to balance makes us better at everything we do. So take some time this week to figure out how you want to balance your life particularly what will you do for yourself to help establish that balance. Maybe even some of you will consider taking up yoga.

Talk to you soon,
Erin

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Another Great Story

I don't think I'll be able to top the story that Nicole shared yesterday, but I thought since she shared a nice success story that I would share something that happened this week as well. I have been working with this family for just over a year now and they have begun their third assessment. For different reasons, each assessment has it's own challenge. This particular assessment has given me a challenge because this young man made each objective that I tested out on him seem so effortless. There was no spotlighting or scaffolding that needed to take place to show mastery in these objectives. Usually I'll hit a wall with one or two objectives and I'll know exactly what we'll work on next. Wow! what a great challenge to be faced with!

At the end of this particular component of the assessment I decided to just pull out a game to play with him. It was such a pleasure to spend this time with him. During the game we had a lot of general chit chat about the game, emotion sharing over things that happened and such natural facial gazing to see my reaction or to share his reaction to things that happened. We even came to a point where we didn't know what a particular card was to be used for, so we talked about it and he made a suggestion and then I suggested something else. He quickly responded with "yeah, let's use it that way". This coming from a kid who had to have control over everything when we first started! At the end of the game I ended up winning, he looked up at me, frowned and snapped his fingers with a simple shucks. I loved being able to see a gesture, facial gaze integrated with an expression and words used together to share his simple reaction to losing the game. How cool to see him communicating with such broadband communication. When I started working with this family, if there was a chance he would lose a game, he wouldn't play. The focus of any game was the competition and the goal was to win, now it was about the interaction that we got to share.

I continue to stand amazed by this wonderful program and look forward to sharing more wonderful success stories in the future. Now I'm off to try and figure out an objective to work on with him!

Have a wonderful fall week!
Michelle

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Really Great Story...and an apple guy update


Okay - I'll share the apple guy update first because so many of you have been hounding me about this. Apparently there is now an apple guy craze sweeping the nation! Here is a picture of the apple guys at our house today - a little over one week since they were created. You can see the change in facial expression and overall aging of the apples - pretty cool!

Now onto my really great story...
We have two young men at our center who come for instruction in the afternoons, including lunchtime. They usually eat in the kitchen with one of us while the rest of the staff eats in the lounge next to the kitchen. Today we decided to leave them to eat lunch without us while we (the staff) ate in the lounge. We heard the boys finish eating, and then they wandered out to see what we were doing. Without really thinking about it too much we told them to head back into the kitchen and we'd be there in a minute, since we were still finishing up our lunches. They went back in there and after a few minutes I could see some movement in the kitchen from where I was sitting.

I got up to peek through the door and I saw an amazing sight. These two boys had opened up the dishwasher, which was full of clean dishes from the day before, and were unloading it and putting the dishes away! One was taking the dishes out and handing them to the other to put in the cupboard. The cup cupboard quickly got full, so they figured out that if they stacked the cups they could fit more in there. When they couldn't stack anymore they moved on to other dishes in the dishwasher. But, they couldn't completely empty the dishwasher because of the remaining cups and a few other things they didn't put away. The next thing I observed was them closing the dishwasher and digging around under the sink to find a sponge and some dish soap. One of the boys tried really hard to get the cap flipped up, but couldn't do it. They both stood and looked at the bottle for a minute and then one of them unscrewed the cap - what a great idea! Together they filled the sink with water and some soap (I was worried we might end up with large amounts of suds all over the floor, but they appraised the amount of soap that was needed really well!). Then one of them scrubbed the dishes while the other rinsed.

I seriously could not believe I was seeing this. These two boys used to be incredibly passive and prompt dependent, not to mention failing to see the redeeming qualities of tasks like doing the dishes. What I observed today was two boys co-regulating with each other, persevering, problem solving, thinking flexibly, appraising, and initiating the whole thing without any adult interference. It was so great to see how well these guys are learning to think and act and work together without adult scaffolding. We all decided that we need to leave them alone in the kitchen more often - and make sure we have a video camera set up!

So - here's to guided participation, and framing, and experience sharing, and scaffolding, and everything else we work at so diligently to pave the way for moments like what I observed today. It was a good reminder to me that sometimes as adults we need to butt out and see what kids can do on their own - they may surprise us!

Until next week,
Nicole

Monday, October 15, 2007

TV

Over the weekend, I spent some time watching some of the children's programs on TV. I was appalled by some of the story lines and communication that was displayed during the 30 minute shows. We all get wrapped up in a particular TV show every season, but the content seems to be getting less and less appropriate. It is purely entertainment and there seems to be no thinking involved on our parts. I turned the TV off and thought to myself about the amount of time children I know watch TV and it became very disturbing to me. If they are watching shows for 1-3 hours a day, what is their mind doing during this time? Are they processing any new type of information? Are they really learning skills that can apply to their lives? The scary thing is, the answer to these questions seems to be no. A child's job is to learn and play during their years of development. Having these experiences is what makes the neurological connections in their brain connect and become stronger. I would like to encourage everyone to shut off the TV and involve their children in play and activities around the house. TV shouldn't be used as a babysitter and is not a substitute for play and learning at home. If your child is going to watch TV, please limit the amount of time they are watching and WHAT they are watching. There is a lot of crud on TV now, but you can still find age appropriate and educational programs.

Until next week,

Courtney

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Oh Happy Day!

There is a song called “Oh Happy Day” and it pops into my head from time to time. Why I don’t know maybe it is my subconscious either telling me that I need to change my attitude and be happy or it is a reflection of how I am feeling at the time. Anyway I was reflecting back on my week and I started thinking about this Tuesday and Tuesday in general and that song popped into my head.

I have come to the conclusion that I love Tuesdays. They have become my favorite workday of the week. I think the major reason for this is that every Tuesday I get to spend time with two of my favorite boys. When they leave I walk around feeling so good and they always find a way to make me smile.

I have discovered that when I leave work on Tuesdays I am always happy and in a good mood. I just feel lighter somehow. I have energy and look forward to what the next Tuesday will bring. It is a bright shining spot in each week. Not that there aren’t others, but this is a guarantee.

I encourage each of you to find that bring shining spot in your week that you can just count on to make you feel good. Take a moment and reflect on your week to see if you can think of your “Happy Day.”

Talk to you soon,
Erin

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Time Away

This weekend I had the most wonderful opportunity. I ran away from home with my dear friends from high school. There were 8 of us walking the streets of New York City and what a refreshing 48 hours it was. I came home remembering that I am an individual, that my arms and legs are used for more than serving my family. Most of all I realized how precious each person in my family is and was refreshed and ready to come home to my beautiful children and wonderful husband.

Having opportunities like this is essential for everybody just to become refreshed and ready to face our lives again. Flying away to a big city for a weekend isn't an option to everybody (nor would everybody find that relaxing), but finding time for yourselves is something we all need, whatever it is that we choose to fill that time with - just be sure to fill it with something that will revive you.

I was reading the October issue of Working Mother's magazine the other day and the title of this article caught my eye. "3 Guilt Free Hours - Leadership coach Jamie Woolf explains why sometimes the best thing you can do to be a better mom is take a break from everything - at least temporarily - and indulge yourself." Oh, sounds great! She claims that everybody can find that time and the quiz that she includes in the article will give you the answers of how you can do it. So take a moment to answer these questions for yourself - I shortened the questions, so if you want to read the entire article (which I encourage you to do) click here:

1. List three reasons you feel you can't slow down. Now imagine that you have to slow down. What would happen?


2. Write down a guilty mom moment that makes you cringe. Now think about if there were unexpected benefits for your child. Try to find something redemptive that came from that moment.


3. What makes you feel guilty on a regular basis?


4.List three activities you most dislike with your children. Choose one activity you could stop doing today. Choose another activity you could get help with.


5.List three things you realistically could do to make your life easier at home. What stops you from doing each of these things? Now take a hard look at your excuses. Is there something you could cut from your budget ot afford help once a month? Choose one of your lamest excuses and find a solution.


6. Imagine that all of your responsibilities are on hold for three hours. What would you do with that free time all to yourself? How would it make you a better mom, partner and employee?


7. Name someone you'd call in a crisis or someone who could help you get back on track if you drift off course.


8. Guess what? You just figured out where you can get three guilt-free hours see your answers to questions 4 and 5). You've also figured out why you so desperately need this time (see your answer to number 6). Now commit to it. You officially have permission to take three hours off, so get out your calendar and block out the time. To keep you committed, have the person from question 7 hold you to it. Now go. Be guilt-free.

What are you going to do to ensure you can remain a person outside of your children? Maybe you'd enjoy being a part of a book club or find refreshment in hitting the malls. Whatever revives you, make sure to find the time to make it work.

To a refreshed life and moments of freedom!! ~Michelle

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Apple Guys


For those of you who did not attend our parent chat last week (or read the transcript), we were discussing fall activity ideas. People had lots of great ideas, and I was inspired to try a few new things with my own children during this season. I mentioned the idea of making "apple guys", and no one knew what I was talking about. I would hate for any of you to miss out on the experience of creating "apple guys" with your kids, so I'm going to enlighten you all with an explanation and picture this week.

"Apple Guys", as they are affectionately referred to at my house, are little creatures carved out of fresh apples - and then left to sit for days, months, or years. You first need to peel the apple, and then use a small knife to carve out a little face of some sort (kind of like a pumpkin except you carve the face into the apple instead of cutting out pieces). If you'd like, you can stick little peppercorns or cloves into the eyes. Then you simply let the little guys sit around on your counter. After a couple of days they being to shrivel up, and as the days go by they get more and more shriveled and wrinkly until they turn into these almost petrified little creatures that are completely hard. I'm not sure if I'm proud or embarrassed to admit this, but we have an apple guy from 3 years ago still sitting in it's place of honor in our kitchen. It has been the subject of many a conversation over the past 3 years! The picture you see here is of the apple guys my kids made with my husband 5 days ago. You can see that the shriveling has commenced, but they will get even more so with time and the "aging process". Now, in case any of you are wondering, they do not get rotten or smell. I don't know why - I can't explain it. It is the magic of the apple guy!

You may be asking yourself why any of this matters. Well, there are so many ways you can use this with your kids! First of all, it's a funny thing to do together - picking out the apple, figuring out what kind of face to make, working together to carve it, admiring your creation, etc. Then there is the wonderful component of checking it together daily to see how it has changed. What a great on-going episodic memory review opportunity. Imagine the remediation possibilities with the apple guys! If you make them at home, and I hope you will, post a comment to let us know how yours turned out. Maybe you and your kids can think of a more creative name, but at our house they will always be the "apple guys"!

Until next week,
Nicole

Monday, October 8, 2007

Statewide Assessments

It is that time of year again in the State of Michigan for statewide assessments. Over the next few weeks, children in 3rd grade or higher, will be participating in some form of an assessment. If your child is completing an assessment, it will be important to remember to be supportive and a bit more understanding. Anxiety tends to increase during these assessments as children feel the pressures to do their best. Opportunities to move around and have sensory breaks may also be limited. It will be important to try to integrate sensory opportunities into your evening family activities and to provide your child with some down time after school so that they can relax. Keeping a healthy and nutritious diet over the next few weeks and getting necessary amounts of sleep will be very important as well.

I hope these tips will be helpful! Have a wonderful week!

Courtney

Thursday, October 4, 2007

A Sense of Community

I decided that I would blog about our bi-weekly on-line chats that we do with our current RDI families this week. I really enjoy doing this every few weeks. It gives me an opportunity to interact with several different families that I wouldn’t necessarily have the opportunity to chat with since I am not their consultant.

We chatted this week about fall activity ideas. I have to say that I love our activity idea chats. Not only do I like to share ideas, but I also get so many new ideas myself. We came up with ideas for apples, leaves, and pumpkins. It was a lot of fun even though there were only two parents on the chat.

I really enjoy this opportunity for community and sharing. I think parents also like the chance to chat with other parents in the same situation. Some of the newer families have the chance to learn from some of our more veteran parents. It can also be the other way around. It is fun to see the different ways that people approach the same difficulties or topics. I also love to hear the success stories. These chats truly provide a chance for the parents in our practice to connect with each other.

The sense of community and connectedness is what makes me so excited about our new “Cluster Coaching” sessions that we have coming up. I think this is truly a great opportunity for those of you in our nearby community that are interested in becoming a part of our Horizons family, but aren’t yet ready to delve into a full blown RDI program or need a lower cost option for working with your child. I am also excited about the opportunity for families to connect with each other through these clusters. We are beginning with an introductory cluster and hope to expand from there to special interest clusters. We are offering multiple day and time options to meet the schedules of families. If you are interested or want more information you can contact Betsy at betsy@horizonsdrc.com.

I think a sense of family and community is really important to making us all feel like we belong and that someone understands. Find the family or community that suits you best and embrace it. You’ll feel better for it.

Talk to you soon,
Erin

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Too Much T.V.


There are days when I wake up and feel like I've got way too much to get done. The dishwasher needs to be unloaded and reloaded, I haven't had my coffee and it'll be noon before I can pop my head above the pile of laundry that has accrued over the past two weeks. Occasionally my children come and wake me up before I'm ready to crawl out of bed, so what is the easy answer to these problems. A nanny... or perhaps a maid?!? Unfortunately that's not an option, so I guess the T.V. will be a good starting point.


Let me set up this wonderful scenario. It's Saturday morning, we are waking up slowly, then I eventually get around to making my lovely family a wonderful homemade breakfast. (Can you imagine the Leave it to Beaver scenario?) I've got bacon and eggs, toast or cereal. I am willing to be mommy restaurant this one day and serve my family - how would you like your eggs? In order to get all this done I decide to let my girls watch t.v. and have a nice relaxed start to their day until I can get the breakfast made. I would love that and would be so grateful if one morning I could wake up and be told, why don't you watch a little TV while I make you breakfast. The wonderful, ideal morning is running through my head. The making breakfast part runs smoothly (as the girls soak in the TV) then it's time for breakfast to be eaten and suddenly this utopia of a morning comes crashing down. My kids are screaming (despite the five minute warning that TV was to be turned off) and when we finally get to the table after crying fits, time outs or whatever the next five minutes entail, the breakfast is cold and we are all crabby.


The television. You hear us often talk about the negative affects of television, video games, computer time etc..., but you won't get us to stop talking about it. More research came out this month regarding the negative affects of television. Please take time to read it. I'm going to make a conscious effort to either leave my expectations of a wonderful Saturday a.m. breakfast (thanks for that reminder in the last post Nicole) or to include them in the process so they can be proud of the breakfast they made. What changes are you going to make to decrease the TV time in your house?


To less TV and more memory making moments,

Michelle

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Giving up the bows...for now

Those of you who know me know that I definitely appreciate the finer details of being female – the shoes, the jewelry, the lip-gloss - you get the picture. When our daughter joined our family I was thrilled with the idea of finally being able to put one of my children in dresses, buy cute little shoes, and do her hair. After three boys it was time for me to have another female in the house to share this love of all things girly! When she was tiny I was easily able to put cute little things in her hair and she left them there. Then all her baby hair fell out so there really wasn’t much hair to do anything with (I resorted to headbands for photos!). Fast-forward to the present time, and my daughter is now 14 months old. She has a lovely head of thick, dark, curly hair that is just begging to be done up in cute bows, pigtails, and tiny braids.

There is just one small problem – she refuses to leave the darn things in!! I have tried everything – winding the hair bands tighter, doing her hair while she has a snack to distract her, buying different types of clips, doing her hair while wet, while dry - you name it I have tried it. I really thought I had her beat last week when I washed her hair and spent time putting it in small little twists all over her head. I used tiny little hair bands that were guaranteed not to pull out. She looked so cute – and I was feeling really good about having finally triumphed over her in the hair department. And then she went to bed…and in the night I heard her up laughing and laughing and laughing…and in the morning her hair looked like she’d gotten way too close to an electrical outlet…and every single hair band was strewn around the floor of her room. What’s a mom to do???

My husband has been watching this drama from afar all these weeks, and has put up with my scowls when I come home and her hair is running wild all over her head. He gives me the story behind how it came to be that the hair d├ęcor she had when I left the house in the morning is no longer – she tried to eat the bows; she threw the hair bands on the floor; she got mad and yanked them out…and on and on. Finally this past weekend he said something that didn’t make me happy at the time, but that I know really makes sense. He suggested that our daughter just really isn’t ready to keep bows in her hair, and that soon she will be able to do that, but in the meantime maybe I should stop setting myself up for disappointment and struggles between us and just let it go. Darn – I hate it when he’s right!

There are many times in life with our kids that we have to know when to adjust our expectations. We have to know when to let things go, at least for now. Parenting a child with autism and working toward remediation often requires walking a fine line between having great expectations for your child, but also knowing when s/he just isn’t ready to do something. Many times parents will tell me that they just really want their child to have a friend. They may go to great lengths to “get” their child a friend – setting up play dates, hosting events, and bringing their child to every extra-curricular activity imaginable – all in the name of this quest for a friend. But the reality is that when kids are developmentally ready to have friends, they will. Until that time we can push and fight and struggle and devote ourselves to the cause all we want, but in that process we will depress ourselves, burn out our child, and probably not devote our time and attention to working on the developmental foundations that will allow our child to actually have a friend someday.

I think it really boils down to trusting the developmental process and knowing that “not now” doesn’t equal “never”. My daughter will keep her hair bows in at some point – but not now. Children with autism who are getting back on the typical developmental process through remediation will get to the point where they are able to engage in very real and meaningful ways – but it might not be right now. There is a process to everything, and half the battle is understanding that process and knowing when to let go…for now.

I am continuing to work on letting go of my need for my daughter to have her hair done all the time. I won’t lie – I still do something with it each morning before I leave for work. But, the difference is in my expectations. I don’t expect to come home to her hair still looking nice – I’ve accepted that it is unreasonable to expect at this point. She’s not ready for that yet – but someday soon she will be. This week I’d like you to think about the reasonableness of your current expectations for your child. Are there things you expect your child to be able to do that perhaps they just aren’t ready for? Are you constantly frustrating yourself, your child, and others around you by pushing and pulling to meet an expectation that is out of reach at this point? Are you spending more time trying to force your child to an end goal without working on the developmental progression that will get you there? If this is true for you, then I challenge you to reset your expectations. Be willing to let go for now – knowing that you are putting your time and energy into working on the steps that will get you there. Not now doesn’t mean never!

Until next week,
Nicole