Video overload!

Clearly the proud parent, I took a lot of video at ballet class last week during parent observation days…

It’ll probably take you 24 hours and a $50 charge card Mom and Dad, but if you manage to download these videos at your house in Uganda, you’ll be downloading several minutes of undiluted cute!

Maggie’s ballet class:




Anna’s ballet class:






Anna’s AWANA Verses (She is a memorizing wonder – halfway through the year and she’s almost finished the book!):

Maggie was supposed to talk about a missionary for AWANA that week… she chose to talk about Grandma and Grandpa. :-)

Maggie’s verses

A series of very short videos that didn’t quite capture Anna’s dramatic rendition of “Let it Go” and where the two girls wander happily around in the freezing cold.




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Ballet, Silly Party and Snow!

I’m off antidepressants, because of their side effects and have had some yucky days here and there the last few weeks. I have a new supplement I’m trying and have had a really wonderful week this week, mood-health wise. It’s been a good week otherwise too! Not that I remember it all. I can remember back to… this morning! It was a good week, though, I’m sure of it. We did one day of school and had some visiting with my sister today! Love you, Melissa! Thank you for the tea!

Now, enjoy a pile of adorable pictures of the kidlets. And pray for Jordan… he might be coming down with something.

No.... I do no know why Jordan fell asleep like this!

No…. I do no know why Jordan fell asleep like this!

Praying before ballet class!  (Maggie's class is not usually this large)

Praying before ballet class! (Maggie’s class is not usually this large)

SOOOoooooo adorable!

SOOOoooooo adorable!

Lift!

Lift!

Point!

Point!

Stretch!

Stretch!

And stretch!

And stretch!

Anna at the barre

Anna at the barre

Anna at the barre

Anna at the barre

Look at her go!

Look at her go!

Plie

Plie

Yes.... we dressed up like total goof balls and then went out for dinner.  Thank you, Mom D for a birthday dinner out with the family!

Yes…. we dressed up like total goof balls and then went out for dinner. Thank you, Mom D for a birthday dinner out with the family!

The duo of goof.

The duo of goof.

I was ready for the silly party!

I was ready for the silly party!

I'm not sure if they caught him or if he just wore out.

I’m not sure if they caught him or if he just wore out.

We had a snowball fight!  The snowballs left cotton all over the floor that we're still trying to vacuum up.

We had a snowball fight! The snowballs left cotton all over the floor that we’re still trying to vacuum up.

Jordan loved the silly party!

Jordan loved the silly party!

Grammie says he is in "jammie jail!"  Personally, since he's learned to take off his pants and diaper... I think this terminology is very appropriate!

Grammie says he is in “jammie jail!” Personally, since he’s learned to take off his pants and diaper… I think this terminology is very appropriate!

Can you identify the type of tree that fell over during the wind?

Can you identify the type of tree that fell over during the wind?

Needles

Needles

Cones.  All fallen tree picture courtesy of a very cold and courageous Anna.

Cones. All fallen tree picture courtesy of a very cold and courageous Anna.

It was COLD.  Nearly freezing with a freezing and blustery wind chill.  They were out for hours and hours.  I kept havign to make hot cocoa and warm baths and otherwise warm them back up again.

It was COLD. Nearly freezing with a freezing and blustery wind chill. They were out for hours and hours. I kept havign to make hot cocoa and warm baths and otherwise warm them back up again.

Pretty green view with the garden all dormant.

Pretty green view with the garden all dormant.

Looking down the hill.

Looking down the hill.

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Videos – October 2014

I went outside when I heard Carolyn’s happy shrieks slowly turning to cold happy yells. I got this adorable, filthy mud-puddle video before it turned to cries. They all climbed into a warm bath after we rescued Carolyn from where she was stuck in the mud. (Her boots were stuck)

Here is a first! Jordan has been getting more and more relational lately. The other evening, he was not releasing me and actually climbing into my arms to be played with. I loved it. He was so silly and enjoying being my little boy. He was even wrapping his arms and legs around me when I held him which happens…. NEVER. Thank you Lord for Your healing!

And here’s just a quiet snippet of some happy play time at our house with Jordan and Carolyn playing their own games in the play room. I heard the happy sounds and went over with the camera to capture a bit of the happy home sounds.

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October 2014 Photos

Ready for the birthday party and watching for guests!!!

Ready for the birthday party and watching for guests!!!

Hey Mom!  Look how awesome my living room looks!

Hey Mom! Look how awesome my living room looks!

We called it a jungle birthday party and this is the tree fort where they ate their picnic food... wouldn't want to eat down on the ground where the tigers can get you!

We called it a jungle birthday party and this is the tree fort where they ate their picnic food… wouldn’t want to eat down on the ground where the tigers can get you!

These are.... err... caterpillar cupcakes.

These are…. err… caterpillar cupcakes.

Selfie!

Selfie!

Good friends and their children.

Good friends and their children.

Piles of buddies!

Piles of buddies!

Birthday girl turns five!

Birthday girl turns five!

And the rain returns.... and within hours, I find the kids here!

And the rain returns…. and within hours, I find the kids here!

Second time I found them out here, we had to rescue Carolyn, whose boots were stuck in the muck.

Second time I found them out here, we had to rescue Carolyn, whose boots were stuck in the muck.

This little pumpkin-muffin-batter-eater keeps going outside and feeding the cat more and more and more.

This little pumpkin-muffin-batter-eater keeps going outside and feeding the cat more and more and more.

The father of all pellet stove fences has been completed by my masterful husband!  Try and throw toys in THERE to melt, Jordan!

The father of all pellet stove fences has been completed by my masterful husband! Try and throw toys in THERE to melt, Jordan!

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2014 Parent Input for IEP Goals

I’m rather proud of this, so posting it here:

Dubious.....?

Dubious…..?

October 12, 2014
Dear School Team,
We are extremely grateful for the work you do to teach Jordan and to help develop his IEP. For us, having a detailed IEP is about coordinated support for Jordan. It helps us get our own goals and priorities straight; it helps us communicate clearly with you and with private therapists. And, should we ever move, it would help a new teacher come up to speed.
To get us started, I developed a list of 12-month goals. I highlighted the goals that seemed of highest priority to me, but I’ve included all the goal areas to give a better idea of his overall need and also so it’s part of his IEP folder. I did have a hard time choosing the highest priority goals and am open to rearranging which goals go on his IEP or not!
I’m really looking forward to your feedback as you adjust these goals and incorporate any other goals.
Thank you again for the good service you do for both Jordan and our family,

Brian & Rachel Davis

Goal areas:
1. Gross Motor
2. Adaptive / Motor / OT / Self-Care / Feeding
3. Pre-academic / Motor / OT / Fine Motor
4. Social
5. Communication

Gross Motor
• Crawl willingly for 3 minutes (strengthens hands, coordination, brain and vision development)
• Walk up and down stairs without marking with balance, using one hand rail or a helper’s hand
• Be able to climb both up and down ladders without support
• Hang from hands for five seconds (holding to trapeze bar or similar)

• Walk halfway across balance beam or similar with only one hand support
• Learn a true running gait
• Learn any sort of jump (suggested: two-footed vertical jump of any height)
• Respond to music with dance or motions 75% of the time when appropriate

Notes:
-Endeavor to give Jordan minimal physical assistance and support while navigating the room and playground to encourage development of vision, coordination, pacing, strength and general navigation skills. (He would like to hang on people’s hands)
-Have many opportunities for squatting, balancing and crawling or climbing through obstacles.

Adaptive / Motor / OT / Self-Care / Feeding
• Participate in potty time 1-2x a day with 75% success in engagement by: climbing onto potty, sitting down and balancing independently, peeing in the potty, laying down/standing still willingly for diaper, putting feet into pants (if needed), standing up, pulling pants up with support and helping with any other steps in the process.
• Be willing to touch and manipulate undesirable foods 100% of the time (put into bowl, stir, push around… pretty much anything experimental that’s not throwing or otherwise rejecting)
• Be able to self-feed with a spoon with minimal spills or support. (minimal support: Setting bowl and spoon in front of him and allowing him to do it on his own with no major spills)
• Be able to scoop and pour a variety of substances, both wet and dry, with 80% accuracy of it going where intended.
• Willingly clean up toys or supplies when requested 80% of the time

• Be able to drink from an open cup without support 80% of the time.
• Make progress in eating pacing so that only verbal support is necessary to help him eat more slowly 100% of the time. (eg. Saying, “Not yet.”, “Wait.”, “Ok, take a bite.”, etc.)
• Successfully take 1-2 bites of previously rejected foods upon request 50% of the time. ONLY foods currently accepted are: crunchy meltables like crackers/pretzels, pudding/yogurt/some soups, and occasionally a cookie, chips or popcorn.
• Ride a bike or car that for 3 minutes that is propelled with feet on ground (instead of pedals)
• Remove jacket by self and hang up and be helpful in putting coat on 100% of the time.

Notes:
-During feeding time is one of the best times to practice communication, as his most understood signs for using with only verbal prompting are: “Eat”, “Drink”, and “All done.”

Pre-academic / Motor / OT / Fine Motor
• Be able to intentionally place stickers on paper or “stickies” on windows down to 1” in diameter
• Appropriately play with sensory bin items for 3 minutes by scooping, pouring, exploring, etc. without throwing or putting in mouth
• Stack blocks or other items 5 high without help
• Be able to thread 2 items onto string/rope (of any size – could be toilet paper rolls on a rope or extra-large wooden beads)
• Match identical items to each other with 75% accuracy and move on to matching items with photographs of identical items
• Learn to play appropriately with a variety of types of toys, becoming familiar with ten different toys, including those that are for interactive games with others.

• Learn to manipulate five things that require two hands (hold and twist, hold and thread, hold and ____, etc.)
• Manipulate puzzle piece into puzzle independently 75% of the time (even 1 piece puzzles)
• Be able to tear papers in half that are as small as 3” in diameter
• Be able to draw/paint/color with these strokes: up/down, left/right, circles
• Be able to paint, dipping his own brush and applying to paper
• Understand the concept of creating or changing, making bigger/smaller with legos, playdough etc. by willingly playing 3 minutes
• Use pincer grasp 50% of the time for picking up small objects
• Use isolated fingers 75% of the time for pushing buttons, pointing, turning pages, playing piano, etc.
• Turn board book pages independently, just 1 or 2 pages at a time

Notes:
-Jordan really wants to play with his siblings when he is at home, but does not know how to appropriately initiate play or how to participate in games that are already begun. The more basic concepts of manipulation of objects and familiar game phrases he can be familiar with (such as, “give, wait, come, etc.”) the more success he will have with peers on a day-to-day basis.
-For best attention and focus it really helps to have an absence of distractors or anything moveable of any sort. Stim toys are especially distracting (for Jordan: strings, ropes, slinkies, beads, singing toys, flashy toys). Stim toys are really important in helping Jordan when he is overwhelmed and needs to disregulate and refocus… but during the actual practice times, you will sometimes find it better to move them out of sight.

Social / Appropriate Play / Engagement
• Shows increased engagement with peers or one-on-one/teacher, interacting with attentiveness and some reciprocal play for five minutes in a row
• Mimics a wide variety of gestures and activities 50% of the time when prompted (blowing, waving, clapping, dancing, running, drumming, driving toy cars, stacking blocks, putting “in”, etc.)
• Participates in 3-5 songs with motions (fingerplay) with decreasing support until doing 50% of motions independently
• Sits patiently during circle times or similar for 5 minutes in a row without toys/food/etc.
• Learns 10 new appropriate, non-stim activities and games

• Plays a variety of musical instruments for 2 minutes at a time (drum, piano, xylophone, recorder – in order of how easily he does this now)
• Takes turns 10 times during a play time (similar to goal on top of list)
• Increase emotional regulation and ability to not melt down, hit, throw things or otherwise disregulate when overwhelmed, sad, disappointed or sad, having fewer or milder negative episodes at the end of the year than the beginning. Due to his background, his ability to coregulate or be calmed by others is very underdeveloped, so desiring having people present or otherwise involved with him while upset is a sign of progress.
• Developing attachment to particular people is a sign of growth in Jordan’s social development: please note progress in his trust and/or preference for any individuals, with a goal of having 1-2 “special” people that he prefers. (At this point in time, he has no people he is emotionally attached to, including his parents, so we would really both appreciate relational growth being permitted as well as appreciate feedback on this)

Notes:
-Due to Jordan’s history of neglect and his developmental delays, he needs intentional teaching regarding social awareness and stranger safety. He needs to learn to approach new people slowly and to offer high fives or handshakes and to refuse climbing in the laps of strangers or new friends and adults. All support you give in this area by teaching him appropriate physical boundaries and slowing down introduction to new people to “practice” becoming familiar with new adults and friends would be appreciated.

Communication
• Make choice between two photographed options 75% of the time (His private SLP recommended starting with just one photo that he can “request” and learn that pointing/patting a photo gets him that item/activity. She also recommended starting with a very simple, very obvious photograph that is not too small.)
• Practice 10-15 expressive signs throughout the day, gaining 75% proficiency without physical prompting. (eg. “Crackers, music, outside, clean up, pointing/that, potty, eat, drink, more, all done, wait, go”)
• Participate in voice play, making intentional vocal sounds 75% of the time the game is played (into tube, into box, into microphone, whatever works)
• Model early pretend play, driving cars, brushing doll hair, playing with hats, and more simple doll play, etc. Showing engagement and understanding and participation 50% of the time.
• Begin to understand more spoken language, being able to identify 3 body parts, 3 toys and 3 people by pointing or touching

• Responds appropriately to 5 most-used spoken requests with or without gestures: “Give, Stop, Come here, Sit down, and Clean up” 75% of the time
• Make choice between two physical, reachable choices by pointing 100% of the time. (eg. “Cracker or juice?, Truck or ball?”)
• Initiate already known expressive signs 100% of the time correctly without prompting (eat, drink, more, all done)
• Makes requests in appropriate ways, like directing an aide’s hand, pointing, or otherwise communicating without the aide having to guess 75% of the time
• Recognizes and pats the correct next activity on photographed daily schedule 75% of the time. (Would have a daily schedule picture board with actual photos showing about four main parts of his school day that he could visit and pat/point at before each of those activities.)
• Make 1-3 specific sounds upon request 25% of the time (eg. “mmmmmmm, EEEEeeeeee, buh-buh-buh,” etc.)
• Understands and participates in “my turn, your turn” 75% of the time when requested
Notes:
-For frequently used words/vocabulary, our private SLP used drawn out first sounds to encourage first speech: “mmmmmmmore, eeeeeeeat, g-g-g-give”
-For the choice board (starting with one option and moving up to two or more), these are some first choice ideas: Cracker, pretzel, cookie, juice, swing, outside, playground, sea horse, beads, bath, quiet corner, fingerplay, music
-Please communicate to us which signs he is exposed to

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