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Mikey’s Progress: Portage, Speech Therapy & Nursery

When Mikey had his two year check back in October 2016, I mentioned to my health visitor I had some concerns about the fact he wasn’t speaking, making eye contact or responding to his name.

The first avenue we took was a hearing test.

A few people had mentioned he seemed deaf or that he may have hearing problems, we went for a hearing test and he passed with flying colours.

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So the next route we took was removing his dummy and limiting his TV time, which improved his focus and he started to make a few sounds, but we decided together he needs some support.

So we had three options to explore: Speech Therapy, Portage and Nursery

This was October last year and I didn’t quite feel he was ready for nursery so, I went to a Speech Therapy drop in session and my health visitor applied for Portage, which went to a panel along with other applications and it was decided Mikey would qualify for it.

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Fast forward to January 2017 he had his first appointment session of Speech Therapy and is now saying the words: Bubbles, Up, Pop, Daddy, Jack, Bot Bot and Yeah.

He now goes to nursery twice a week and runs off without saying bye, then cries when I pick him up because he wants to stay there (charming).

Plus on Tuesday he had his first Portage session.

I felt nervous and excited about his first session with the Portage worker, I didn’t really know what to expect.

I knew their aims were to improve his eye-contact, socialising and interaction, we’d discussed that in the initial meeting and I felt happy with these goals.

The session went really well, she brought along some toys that meant Mikey had to give her eye contact and she put her thumbs up and said “good looking” every time he looked at her.

I saw a great improvement even after just one session, so I’m excited that he has this weekly.

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The fact is that Mikey is extremely clever, (like scary clever) he knows what he wants and he sees the world in his own way and he lives by it.

Time and time again I keep getting asked what “they” think is “wrong with him” by people, especially because the Autism word keeps getting thrown around.

NOTHING is “wrong” with him, there is so much right with him, he’s so intelligent and if anything overly independent for his age.

Plus it’s not for “them” to decide.

Who are “they” anyway?

Professionals who don’t know him?

I’m his mother and it doesn’t matter to me what label may or may not be given to my son, because to me a label doesn’t change who he is, I love him for exactly who he is right now, his quirks, his meltdowns, the special little moments we get together.

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It isn’t for anyone else to change those things, but of course I take into consideration that he may need support and I would never hold him back from anything that can make his life easier to live, I mean celebrities pay thousands for therapies, it can’t do any harm whatsoever, so my thinking process is…why not?

I’m having these therapies put in place for him, partially because his health visitor suggested it and I completely trust her judgement, he is a very kind person, with a lot of experience and really cares for Mikey. Also my own instincts as mother tell me that although it works for him now being self-serving and not interacting with others, that it may be a struggle for him when he’s older, but there’s a good chance it won’t be.

I’d rather him have gentle therapies now to support him at a young age where he knows no different and prevent any future struggles that may happen, than waiting to see if he has to undo habits once he is in school, when it will be much harder for him because he will have more of a comprehension of the fact it is support he is getting, rather than knowing no different.

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The support he is getting has improved his interaction, eye-contact, socialising and speech in such a short space of time, I’m so proud of him and how well he is doing.

If anyone else is going through a similar journey with their child please comment, I’d love to hear from you about your experience or just to know about your little one.

I will keep you updated on his progress.

Thanks for reading!

michael

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Why I won’t label my son

Why I won’t label my son.

For some time now there has been an Autistic question mark looming over my son’s head, I wrote a blog post a few weeks ago about how people and services were suspecting my son was “on the autistic spectrum”, I have since been told everyone is on the Autistic spectrum, just varying degrees, I don’t know if this is true, but I’ve decided…not to care.

I don’t care what my son is labelled as, we are going through all the motions now to start the appropriate therapies to make his life and learning easier. But if we walk into a pediatrician’s office and he gives my son a label, he’s not going to walk out a different child, he will still be my Mikey. I understand that services have to give it a name so they can do referrals and arrange the correct support, but that means the label is for them not for me or my son. The same as me being an “O positive blood group” doctors need to know that, but it isn’t how I introduce myself to others.

I’m not saying Autism isn’t real or that we shouldn’t recognise, quite the opposite really. It frustrates me that as soon as I mention to someone, that Mikey is going through tests for Autism, that they change their behaviour around him, before I tell them that, they say he’s funny, cute and clever, if I mention Autism they give me a sympathetic “Awww but it’s ok though, he’ll be ok”. They reassure me like my son has a death sentence, he’s different…but isn’t everyone?

His older brother Jack goes to a mainstream nursery, which I’m planning on sending Mikey to if he manages going to it without any problems, so if Mikey needs other support it just means they have different learning needs. There are a lot of intelligent successful people in the world who have autism and there are a lot of intelligent successful people who don’t have it.

I’d like to live in a world where it’s not a terrifying, upsetting time for parents when their child is diagnosed with Autism, where they get the support needed for their own needs, because let’s face it not one person is the same and it isn’t a one size fits all scenario.

So when I say I don’t care, it doesn’t mean I don’t care about my son, I love my children more than anything in the world, but he is perfect the way he is. A diagnosis isn’t going to change the way I look at him, I wouldn’t change one part of him.

As a parent it is my job to support him and make sure he gets any help he needs, so we’re going to start Speech Therapy and Portage in January. I am a great believer in therapies, let’s face it, people pay good money for therapies just to make their life more peaceful and happier, so if my son is having therapies at 2 years old is that really such a bad thing?

To me he will always be my little Mikey Moo, everyone who meets him adores him, he has special little quirks that make him extra special, but that’s why we love him, his name is Michael and a label of Autism will never change that.

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The London Sock Exchange Review + 10% Discount

Have you ever thought about how many socks you go through?

Have you ever realised actually how important great socks are?

I mean…think about it! They go on your feet!

You use your feet everyday, so why not treat them?

How about you can get luxury socks sent to you every quarter of the year? Plus you can recycle your old socks in the handy box they come with for no extra charge!

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Well look no further….The London Sock Exchange have created this great service for the dapper gentleman, for only £15 per quarter!

 

I was lucky enough to be sent some great socks for my husband to try and we were pleasantly surprised!

Who knew a box of socks could be so exciting!

So they turn up in this cute brown box, wrapped in lovely black tissue paper.

Three pairs of socks in gorgeous designs are carefully folded with their own individual names, not only that but they have an outfit suggestion of the back of the card that each pair comes with.

My husband was extremely happy to come home to these luxury dapper socks after a long day at work on his feet and he loved them! I was a bit jealous so had to try a pair on too and they are so comfy, you can just tell the difference between these socks and regular socks. When you put them on you can really feel the quality, you can feel they are specially designed.

Then of course not to be left out, our eldest son Jack wanted to try them on and be a model!

Did you know that in the UK, we generate 1 million tonnes of clothing and textile every single year. That’s a whole lot of landfill. And the London Sock Exchange want to start setting this right, one sock at a time.

Not one sock that gets sent to be recycled gets wasted. 55% are reused and will make their way to developing countries, where they’ll be distributed to communities in need. The other 45% of the socks they receive are deconstructed before being given a second chance in life as an industrial textile….How great is that?!

They are passionate about recycling and here’s a video on what they do:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N8ZoAbfNeM0

So The London Sock Exchange get’s a big thumbs up from Yummy Mummy’s Blog

What are you waiting for? Go and get signed up now and here’s some discount codes to get you started, both are for 10% off your first order:

For the quarterly subscription at checkout use the code: YUMMYSUB

For the annual subscription use the code: YUMMYYEAR

Here are links you need:

Website: www.thelondonsockexchange.net

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheLondonSockExchange/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LDNSockExchange

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thelondonsockexchange/

Email:hello@thelondonsockexchange.net

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A break from blogging

So  I’ve had a bit of a break from blogging the last few months. I’ve really missed it and feel there are so many things I have missed recording about my little monkey’s.

To re-cap I have two little boys Jack (2.5 yrs) and Michael (1.5 yrs) and write about all the trials and tribulations of being their mummy. Since I stopped blogging things have changed quite a lot, I am now expect a baby GIRL!

I will talk about my pregnancy more in upcoming posts but I’m still in shock it is a girl!

I just wanted to write a quick post about why I haven’t been blogging for a while, there has been no major reason other than life just getting in the way.

So now I have my 2yr old, 1 yr old, 20 weeks Pregnancy and my wedding in 8 weeks! Safe to say I have plenty to write about…..

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Christmas Gift Guide Request

I’m creating a Christmas Gift Guide of tried and tested toys!

I will try some my self with the kids and also accept reviews from real mum’s & kiddies with pictures!

If you would like to get in contact for my boys aged 1 & 2 to try your product or to send your review in for consideration then please get in contact via Facebook or Twitter!!

Happy Holidays!christmas-presents

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Halloween with kids ideas!

I had so many ideas for Halloween with the boys but unfortunately they got struck down with a sickness bug, they are recovering now, but since they are too young to understand Halloween I saw no need to dress them up when it would benefit them more having a cosy day in their PJs. Plus it’s the one night a month they spend at Nanny’s house, so they’re having a quiet one!

But saying that I do love Halloween and think kids are adorable dressed up for it! I really wanted to do Jack dressed as Chucky and Mikey as the baby from The Adam’s Family. I then saw a friend of mine on Facebook, Harriet, who has a baby the same age as Mikey, dressed her and her son Luca up for a Halloween competition and won 1st and 2nd Place!

Like me, Harriet likes to create a lot of homemade sensory activities for her son, she gets creative and look at the results!

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Harriet was kind enough to let me use her pictures for this post!

So there you go a fun and creative way to dress up with your little on for Halloween.

If any readers have pictures of their cute little ones, comment with them or send them in via Facebook or Twitter!

Happy Halloween!

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The screaming, kicking & punching terrible 2’s are here!

Jack turns two on the 11th November, it’s hard to believe that my tiny premature baby that was born at 29+5 weeks Gestation is almost two!

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Especially since he started not even being able to breathe by himself and now he has got a whole personality of his own, saying words, starting to string sentences together, feeding himself, knowing he does NOT want to use the potty and of course the reason they are called the terrible two’s….the tantrums.

He’s always been very loving and affectionate especially to his little brother, but I will give you a few scenarios in the last week that have shown the sudden change in his behaviour.

Tantrum 1 – Biting

We were playing “tractor” which started with me getting a picture of a tractor on google images for Jack to point at and say “tractor” to on my laptop, we have gradually progressed and now he says around 30-40 words, the other day we were playing a lovely game of tractor when Jack started smacking the laptop, so I looked at him and said “No Jack, that’s naughty”, he looked at me with anger, his body went rigid with rage, he ran over to his Daddy who was laid on the sofa and without any warning, bit him on the leg! There was pure anger, from nowhere! All of a sudden he was fine and accepted being told off, he gave Daddy a kiss and a cuddle with an apology. But it was so shocking! He has never bitten before!

Tantrum 2 – Raisins

Jack loves eating his dinner, him and Mikey sit side by side in their high chairs and never have any objections, except for Tuesday, on Tuesday this all changed. He screamed and went rigid, he wouldn’t calm down and just stormed about screaming, then all of a sudden walked over to the table and pointed at a box of Raisins, we handed him the box and he was fine, he then got in his high chair and ate all of his dinner. I didn’t see this as giving into him, as I’d happily give him a snack and considering he ate all of his tea, I saw his anger as frustration that he couldn’t communicate what he wanted.

Tantrum 3 – Bath time

Bath time is Jack’s favourite time of day hands-down, so when I get him out of it, there is a 5 second struggle until he remembers he then gets to watch a bit of Peppa Pig and have his night time bottle. Tonight I laid him on the towel and he kicked, punched and scratched, it only lasted for maybe 20 seconds then he was fine, he had his nightly inhaler and calmed down, I was in shock though, shock that my tiny snuggly baby that needed me to survive would try and hurt me! I know he doesn’t know the difference and is learning from his emotions, but still it’s hard to deal with!

They say that a toddler’s hormones are the same as a teenagers, well if Jack’s feeling the hormones I felt as a teenager I’m going to run and hide…this can only get worse!

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The daily battles of being a Mum

There’s always something that “could be done” in my house, whether it’s housework, paperwork, something with the kids etc. There’s never nothing to do! As I’m sure most mother’s can relate to.

Take the dishes for instance, I can clean the entire Kitchen and nothing makes more of a difference to the naked eye than the dishes, they look the messiest and soon pile up, doing them instantly makes the place look better….so why do I leave them until last?! They’re not hard to do, I don’t mind getting my hands dirty, but I will make excuses in my mind! Like “There will be more upstairs, might as well do them all in one go, so wait”, “They’re one of the quickest jobs to do so leave them until last” or my favourite “There isn’t enough there to justify doing them, wait until there is more”. None of which really matters, because that is all they are….excuses. I just don’t know what it is about them dishes I just can’t seem to get the motivation!

Vacuuming, it makes me feel like a good housewife, while doing it and sniffing in the vacuum smell I boast to myself in my head (Sad? Yes I know) about how tidy my house must be that there is enough floor space to vacuum it! If the house isn’t tidy, the vacuum’s collecting dust in a whole different way…by being sat in the broom cupboard, because I’m telling you if there isn’t a spotless house to vacuum, it isn’t getting done. Therefore vacuuming is a triumph.

Matching socks, the peril of my life. I never saw matching socks as that big an issue, until I became a mum, then suddenly if your child has odd socks it instantly puts you in the “bad mum category”. Not that I think you’re not a great mum if your child has matching socks, I take my hat off to you, but it really isn’t that big a deal to me. I am not a greatly religious person, but since having children I do believe in Sock Heaven.

Milestones, sorry to sound brash but I don’t give a shi*t what milestone my child is at. I only have two children, but they are complete and utter opposites. When parents compare at what age their children teethe, hold their head up, crawl, walk etc. It really gets on my nerves! Every child is different and will develop differently, the will do it, just in their own time. For me personally I am in no rush for my baby to take one more step away from being a baby!

The daily battles of being a momma never end, but they will be the battles we miss when our babies are all grown up! Enjoy it while it lasts!

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Turning One

On the 1st October my youngest baby Mikey Moo will be one!

Time has flown so quickly, this time last year I was preparing my self to have a C-section with my Breach baby!

Then at 11:57am weighing 4lb12oz my gorgeous Michael David Woodhouse was born.

6 months to the day after my Dad died, he brought us light in the darkest of times.

Here are some pics from the last 12 months:

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Finding Mummy’s Switch Off Button

Before you become a parent, there really is no way to understand what it feels like.

Yes you may have family members or friends’ babies who you are close too. But that bond of holding YOUR baby in your arms is like no other feeling in the world.

It sounds patronising for others to tell you that you don’t know what it’s really like until they are here. But once your little one is born, you find yourself saying it!

It’s amazing how many news stories suddenly stand out to you and terrify you to the point you can’t sleep, films and TV shows will make you cry where they wouldn’t have before, you can be so incredibly frustrated by this little person who has caused you physical pain by being born, kept you awake all night and turned your house in to a bomb-site, yet you idolise them above anyone else in your life.

You quickly realise your brain hasn’t switched off since the moment they were born, this isn’t to discourage that pregnancy isn’t equally as enjoyable yet terrifying, but once they are here it is a whole other ball game.

So how do you find your switch off button?

Your child is fed, bathed, in clean clothes and laid on fresh bedding. Their nappy is clean, the house is clean and so are you! There’s nothing left for you to do…but switch off! So you sit there, with all this time on your hands, what do you feel? Joy? Peace? Relaxation? NO! You feel guilt (you don’t know why) you feel worry (about everything and anything that could possibly ever happen, including the end of the world!) and you feel stress (about why you have got nothing to do!). You’re listening to your child breathing (making sure they are) and looking at them full of love, but the worry still doesn’t go away, you can see them, hear them, feel them and you know they are safe, so why can’t you settle?! Maybe you need a night off?!

You’ve finally bucked up the courage to let Grandma have your precious baby for the night, you and the hubby have some free time, so what do you do? Let your hair down? Relax? Have some care-free fun? NO?! You do nothing but worry about your little one, check your phone constantly and ring/text for updates. Even if you’re not saying it, the back of your mind is doing overtime!

Maybe you need a break from your little on to relax, but not be too far away? Your hubby tells you to go and enjoy a bath and he’ll watch bubs! Bingo! So you’re laid there in the bath, soaking up the bubbles, then you hear a gurgle?! you shout down to see if your little one needs anything,but of course he’s fine! A cry?! He’s fine, Daddy can handle it, but you still need to check. Nothing?! That’s right you hear nothing, you should be enjoying the peace, but no you need to find out why you can’t hear your little monkey.

So where is Mummy’s switch off button and why is it so difficult to find?! I have the answer….

It doesn’t exist!

Now if I have just rained on your parade, hold that thought! Ask yourself this….

We can’t switch off, why? Because these vulnerable little people who lived inside us for 9 months, need us to protect them no matter what, they need all the awful thoughts of what could happen to go through our minds so we can protect them from it, they need us to NOT switch off, because they need us to be there for them no matter what, day or night.

So if the above describes you, if you can’t switch off, it’s because you are everything a mother should be, you are your little one(s) everything and that is because you never ever…switch offf