Posted in Autism, Bethany Moments, My Vlogs, Special Needs Family Life, Special Needs Parenting

Helping My Autistic Daughter Cope With Change

One of Bethany’s most significant struggles as a person with autism is handling change.

She wants everything in her life to always be the same!

A change in her routine, throwing away old, worn out clothes and accepting new ones are tough on Bethany.

Even a change in her environment, like getting a new kitchen table, for example, can be extremely hard on her emotionally!

Our recent move into a new house in a new city has sparked a bit of anxiety for Bethany, even though she had been looking forward to it for a very long time!

For the first two weeks, she coped with her new environment amazingly well!

Before we moved, I had shown her pictures of bunk beds online and asked her if she wanted one for the new house and she did!!

She talked excitedly about getting her new bed for days and when we finally got it she was thrilled!

My husband and I anticipated that she would have a change of heart when we took apart her old bed and drug it away.

She shocked us, however, by excitedly climbing up to the top bunk and happily settling in.

She even slept all night, which is highly unusual!!

She also surprisingly, had no issues with getting a new couch.

But then one day we decided to hang up curtains and for reasons known only to her, she freaked out and had a very aggressive and potentially destructive tantrum.

She did not want those curtains hung up and she let us know it!

However, we didn’t back down and  a month later, other than occasionally asking if I can take them down and me telling her no, she has accepted them being there without further incident.

At about the same time as the curtain incident, Bethany started waking up twice a night, every night.

Her need to control everything has also magnified, especially her need to try to control me.

She even tries to dictate to me what outfit I should wear each day, including what color underwear she wants me to wear!!!

TMI, I know!!

The latest issue we’ve had actually happened just yesterday.

We bought a new smaller kitchen table and chairs that fits better in our new smaller house.

Bethany watched Malcolm take apart and remove our old table and chairs without a problem.

She watched him put together the new one without even so much as a hint of distress.

It wasn’t until we put the new table and chairs in place that she blew up!

She wanted the old table and chairs back and was willing to fight for them!

She threw a few things around and threatened to pinch me.

Her tantrum didn’t last long, thank God, but she was grouchy for the rest of the night.

She kept moving the new chairs into another room.

My husband and I decided to leave them there and he would put them back in place before she woke up and he left for work the next day.

It’s now 3:30 the next day and she seems to have accepted them.

Anyway, that’s what I’m optimistically assuming because she hasn’t said a word about them all day.

With all that being said, when I know a change in Bethany’s life is imminent,  I’ve learned to try to prepare her ahead of time for the transition.

A feat which can be tricky, because there is a fine line between giving her enough time in advance to successfully process the change, while, at the same time, not giving her too much time to stew about it, which can end up causing her even more anxiety!!

I’m certainly not saying we’ve cured Bethany’s dislike of changes, but below are some suggestions that have helped and might help others with autism cope with changes in their lives as well.

      • Social Stories: I am a big fan of social stories. In Bethany’s case I use photos or realistic drawings to explain to her ahead of time what kind of change she can expect to happen soon.
      • Timers: For transitioning from one activity to another in her daily schedule I’ve had great success using the Time Timer. This timer lets Bethany see time passing. She knows she must change activities when the red part is all gone. I have to be careful to put the timer up high enough that she can’t reach it though, or she’ll keep giving herself more time!!
      • Create a fun transition signal: I use counting to prepare Bethany for changes in activity.  For example: When it’s time to get out of the tub, I tell her that I will count to 20 twice, say, “Peek a boo Bethany”, ( She likes to hide behind the shower curtain while I count) then it will be time to get out.
      • Practice changes: Practicing the gradual acceptance of small changes in Bethany’s routine, activities, and environment has proven to be very helpful in helping her deal with the more significant changes in her life that cannot be avoided.

I truly believe that Bethany’s attendance at Flash Club, a social club for children with autism, has played a huge part in helping her accept changes better.

She participates in several eight week sessions of activities on a rotating basis. At first changing activities was very stressful on her. She melted down a lot!

But concentrating on one activity for eight weeks gives her plenty of time to enjoy each activity while also processing the idea that a change is coming.

Now she realizes that changing activities gives her more fun things to do and she looks forward to each new activity.

In the video below, my husband and I discuss the potential change to Bethany’s environment!

* A version of this post was previously published in February 2015.
purple divider - Copy - Copy

//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js


//
purple divider - Copy - Copy
Thanks so much for stopping by!

If you have a minute, please check out our Etsy Shop where you can purchase handcrafted junk journals, instantly download prints of vintage ephemera and copies of Bethany’s paintings!

We’d love for you to join our big, happy, family!! Please Subscribe to our blog and You Tube channels below and please consider sharing this post on your other social media accounts!! Thanks!!

Adventures of an Autistic Brain Tumor Survivor on Youtube

Crafty Old Lady on Youtube

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Posted in Autism, Bethany Moments, Childhood Brain Cancer Survivors, Disability Awareness, Homeschooling, My Vlogs, Siblings of Special Needs Children, Special Needs Family Life, Special Needs Parenting

Day In the Life of a Special Needs Homeschooling Family!

*This post was originally published on 1/26/15

Ever wonder what a typical day is like for us, a not so typical special needs homeschooling family?

If so please read on and watch our video!

If the thought has never crossed your mind, well then I invite you to continue reading anyway!
girl doing homework

purple divider

//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js


//
purple divider - Copy - Copy

Because of Bethany’s unpredictable seizure disorder and sleep issues we have never really been able to establish a set routine or schedule for getting our school work done.

But a typical day goes something like this…

Bethany and I wake up anywhere from 4:00 to 11:00 a.m. depending on what kind of night we’ve had.

I’ll get her settled with some food and a DVD, then have Jeremiah keep an eye on her while I take a shower which usually happens anywhere from about 9:30-11:30.

He usually has one eye on her and the other on his computer!

After my shower, depending on Bethany’s condition or mood, she and I might play an educational game or two before I begin working with Jeremiah.

Sometimes, however, I might decide to just let her chill out on the couch for a while before I work with her.

Jerry and I typically work together for a couple of hours on Algebra, Physiology, Language Arts, History/Geography, Art History/Appreciation, and Health.

He usually has some history questions or other project that he has to research after that.

He and I usually eat lunch while we work.

We typically do not eat breakfast.

Of course all the while I’m working with Jerry, I am also going back and forth to play an educational game with Bethany.

Sometimes I read a book to her, fit in a quick lesson of some kind, or just sing along for a few songs with her and Barney.

Malcolm and my daughter, Rebekah almost always come home for lunch!

Malcolm arrives at around 12:30 and Rebekah arrives at around 2:00.

Thankfully, they both get their own lunches made!

Most of the time their presence doesn’t interrupt our school day unless they’ve got something exciting going on!

Usually anywhere from around 1:00-3:00 Jeremiah is done with his work and can pursue his own interests!

His interests almost always require him being on the computer, but surprisingly many of his interests are also educational and can be considered school work!

It’s all in how I translate what’s he’s done to the school district!boy using a computer

Bethany typically peps up in the late afternoon and evening.

This is the time that she prefers to do her school work, work on life skills, or go on social outings.

girl rolling out pizza dough

Then it’s dinner and shower time for Bethany.

After her shower she loves to play dice games or cards and work on crafts or therapy worksheets.

Then she watches a few more videos and finally it’s bedtime!

And then the cycle begins all over again!

To be honest, our days can sometimes be monotonous, boring, and even depressing.

But despite that, we are thankful for our days together and besides, most days are fun and interesting.

I invite you come on over for a virtual visit!

All you have to do is press play, then sit back, relax, and watch!

Thanks for stopping by!


purple divider - Copy - Copy

//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js


//
purple divider - Copy - Copy

*This post may contain affiliate links. Thanks in advance if you should decide to purchase an item through one of our links at not extra cost to you. 100% of all commissions earned from sales go directly toward providing a better quality of life for our daughter, Bethany, a brave brain tumor survivor and special girl!

If you have a minute, please check out our Amazon Store where I have put together a list of my favorite books and resources and Bethany’s favorite games and products and our Etsy Shop where you can instantly download vintage book illustrations and prints of Bethany’s paintings!

We’d love for you to join our big, happy, family!! Please Subscribe to our blog and You Tube channels below and please consider sharing this post on your other social media accounts!! Thanks!!

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Posted in Day in the Life, My Vlogs, Special Needs Family Life, Special Needs Parenting

YouTuber Meet Up With Our Mystery Guest!

Last Sunday we had the honor and privilege of having a YouTuber meet up with one of our dear YouTube friends, Val, from The Neighbors!

I was so excited when she messaged me to let me know she’d be in our neck of the woods and asked if I wanted to have a little YouTuber meet up with her!

YouTuber Meet up!
purple divider - Copy - Copy
//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js


//
purple divider - Copy - Copy
I never dreamed I’d ever really have the chance to meet Val in person, because she lives on the west coast and I live on the east coast and traveling is not that easy for either of us!

So of course I jumped at the chance to get together with her!

Since Bethany is really the star of my YouTube channel, I knew Val would be hoping to meet her, too!

But on the morning of the big day, Bethany woke up very confrontational, aggressive, and uncooperative.

To say that I was disappointed is a huge understatement.

I’m glad we had scheduled for Bethany’s trusty assistant to help out just in case she refused to go with us or in the event that she did come and wanted to go home before Malcolm and I were ready to!

As it turned out Bethany refused to get ready to go to our YouTube meet up on time, so Malcolm and I had to leave without her.

I was heartbroken.

I so very much wanted Val to meet the happy and charming Bethany that she knows and loves and sees in our videos!

When Malcolm and I finally arrived at our Youtube meet up destination spot, Val wasn’t there yet!

I was delighted when Kristin arrived with Bethany in tow just a few minutes after we did!

But where was Val?

Shortly after Beth and Kristin arrived, Val called to say she was a little bit lost!

Not to worry though, because from her description of her surroundings, we knew exactly where she was and we found her quite quickly!

I must say that meeting Val in person for the very first time was one of the happiest and most exciting moments of my life!

Bethany decided she didn’t want to ride in Kristin’s car anymore and she wanted to get Tacos!

Wanting to eat something didn’t surprise us in the least, because it was already 2:30 pm and up to that point she had refused to eat anything at all!

Kristin decided she might as well go home, because there wasn’t really anything else for her to do.

So Malcolm took Bethany to get her Tacos and when they returned she had reverted back into her usual happy, charming, and sweet little self once again!

She must have been hangry or maybe the Charlotte’s Web oil I had given her before we left the house had kicked in or both!

Whatever the reason, Bethany was able to pull herself together and turn her crappy into happy!

And because of that, she ended up being able to experience a wonderful YouTuber meet up!

And because Bethany was happy, the rest of us were able to enjoy our very precious and all too short time together, too!!

Our YouTuber meet up was an overwhelming success!

It was so awesome meeting you, Val!

We’ll see you on YouTube until we meet again!

youtuber meet up 2youtuber meet up 4

purple divider - Copy - Copy
//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js


//
purple divider - Copy - Copy
smiley face poop shopLet us turn your crappy into happy! Visit our Smiley Face Poop Shop where you can purchase clothing, stickers, magnets, mugs, cups, water bottles, and bags- all with our adorable custom made smiley face poop and slogan printed on them! 100% of all sales go toward providing a better quality of life for Bethany!

 

 

Be sure to visit Bethany’s Business, our store full of special needs family products and special needs homeschooling resources! All commissions go toward providing a better quality of life for Bethany! Thanks!

 

 

 

Special Needs Family Link ShareBe sure to join us every weekend at the Special Needs Family Link Share: The safe place for those affected by special needs to share, support, and encourage one another!

 

 

 

We’d love for you to join our big, happy, family!! Please Subscribe to our blog by email and to our daily You Tube vlogs below and please consider sharing this post on your other social media accounts!! Thanks!!

*This post may contain affiliate links. Thanks in advance if you should decide to purchase an item through one of our links at not extra cost to you. 100% of all commissions earned from sales go directly toward providing a better quality of life for our daughter, Bethany, a brave brain tumor survivor and special girl!

Posted in My Vlogs, Special Needs Parenting

Subscribe to Our YouTube Vlog Channel

Many of you probably already know that we have a YouTube vlog channel.

I film my family’s daily life and upload our videos to YouTube every Monday through Friday!

What began as a place to keep treasured memories of my family has turned into so much more!

I never dreamed that people would someday actually enjoy watching our very mundane lives!

purple divider - Copy - Copy
//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js


//
purple divider - Copy - Copy
YouTube vlog channel

I never anticipated that having a YouTube vlog channel would be such a positive experience!

I never would have believed that the YouTube community would be so caring and supportive or that we would develop so many wonderful friendships with so many precious people!

And, I never dreamed that having a YouTube vlog channel would become so therapeutic for both Bethany and me!

Because of the nature of Bethany’s condition, she and I have lived somewhat isolated lives and connecting with so many lovely families on YouTube has been a very pleasant experience for us.

Bethany loves hearing her name mentioned on other channels and getting “Love in the mail” from her fans!

I enjoy reading the kind and supportive comments and connecting with such genuinely sweet people!

Bethany loves watching our own videos too, especially the ones of our family having fun together!

What’s really cool is that she will be able to watch and re-watch our videos for ever!

Long after her dad and I are gone, she’ll be able to watch our old videos and remember how much fun we had together and how much we loved her!

When I start complaining about life, family problems, or relationship issues with my husband, I just watch our videos and am reminded that we really do love each other and that life is really not that bad!

Another great thing about our YouTube vlog channel is that it has the potential to eventually become a source of income for my family.

We are a one income family and my husband is nearing retirement, so it would be awesome if our channel would start generating some income for us!

Which brings me to the whole point of this post!

We would love it if you’d subscribe to our YouTube channels, post comments, and give our videos the thumbs up!

It’s free and nothing bad will happen to you if you do…I promise!!

You will not receive a million emails or notifications unless you want to.

Won’t you please consider letting us turn your crappy into happy by subscribing to our YouTube vlog channel and other channels today?

If you already have a YouTube account, all you have to do is click on the subscribe buttons below.

If you don’t have an account, please consider signing up for one and then subscribing to our channels!

Let us turn your crappy into happy! Subscribe to Faith, Hope, and Love on YouTube! I guarantee Bethany will put a smile on your face!

But don’t take my word for it! Check out the videos below!

Thanks so much and we’ll see you on YouTube!!




purple divider - Copy - Copy

Be sure to visit Bethany’s Business, our store full of special needs family products and special needs homeschooling resources! All commissions go toward providing a better quality of life for Bethany! Thanks!

 

 

 

Special Needs Family Link ShareBe sure to join us every weekend at the Special Needs Family Link Share: The safe place for those affected by special needs to share, support, and encourage one another!

Posted in Disability Awareness, Faith, My Vlogs, Special Needs Family Life, Special Needs Parenting

Introducing Our New YouTube Channel, Malcolm and Sylvia

We are pleased as punch to introduce to you our new YouTube channel, Malcolm and Sylvia!

Malcolm and Sylvia YouTube channel

purple divider - Copy - Copy
//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js
purple divider - Copy - Copy
I was recently asked by a subscriber of our other YouTube Channel, Sylvia Phillips (Faith, Hope, and Love) if my husband and I would start a new channel where we would talk exclusively about the many issues we face as special needs parents!

I thought it was a great idea and apparently so did my husband, Malcolm, because he agreed to partner with me in this new venture!

So how does this tie into our Disability Resources theme for February?

Well, I believe our YouTube channels can be utilized as online support groups.

Not only can you enjoy watching our videos, but you can join in on the camaraderie by asking and answering questions and sharing your advice, suggestions and concerns all right there in the comments!  

Let’s get together to support and encourage each other!

Join us at, Sylvia Phillips (Faith, Hope, and, Love) as we film our daily adventures with our special needs, daughter, Bethany! We strive to find happiness amidst our ordinary, everyday, precious, little moments, while we embrace the challenges caused by a brain tumor, brain injury, autism, and epilepsy, one day at a time with faith, hope, and love!


And join us at Malcolm and Sylvia as my husband and I discuss, special needs parenting, large family living, homeschooling,  chronic illness, and whatever else we feel like talking about!

I invite you to please take moment to visit and subscribe to both of our YouTube channels!

By subscribing you’ll be notified when a new video has been posted so you won’t miss out on any of our fun, excitement, or important information!!

Subscriptions are free, so head on over to our channels and subscribe now!

Thanks so much! We do so appreciate your support!



purple divider - Copy - Copy
//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js purple divider - Copy - Copy

We’d love for you to join our big, happy, family!! Please Subscribe to our blog by email and to our daily You Tube vlogs below and please consider sharing this post on your other social media accounts!! Thanks!!

Enter your email address:Delivered by FeedBurnerhttps://apis.google.com/js/platform.js

Posted in Bethany Moments, Disability Awareness, My Vlogs, Siblings of Special Needs Children, Special Needs Family Life, Special Needs Parenting

Faith, Hope, and Love You Tube Vlog Videos 8/9/15-8/15/15

watch you tube videospurple divider - Copy - Copy
//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js //

purple divider - Copy - Copy

For those of you who would like to catch up on our M-F You tube vlog videos here rather than on You Tube, I promise to post them here every Saturday, unless of course, I forget!!

purple divider - Copy - Copy

This week was full of some fun stuff like taking Bethany to the Chenango County Fair. Malcolm and I even got to enjoy a laid back, unhurried, pleasant scenic road trip after dropping Rachel off at the Syracuse Airport which is the not so fun thing that we had to do this week!

We are all adjusting to having one less daughter in the house. I won’t say it’s been easy. In fact, it’s really hard, very hard, especially for Bethany and I. Bethany just does not comprehend that it’s going to be a very long time before we see Rachel again because she is soooooo very far away!

But the separation has already been made just a little bit easier because of a handy little invention called Skype!!

How did we old folks ever make it through life without computers??

purple divider - Copy - Copy

Even better than catching up here, of course, would be for you to press that little red subscribe button down below and join our big, happy family!!

I invite you to come along with us every Monday through Friday as I film our efforts to find joy in all the ordinary, everyday, precious, little moments we are blessed with!!
https://apis.google.com/js/platform.js

When you have a child who has lived through the horrors of brain cancer with multiple complications and disabilities, you really do learn to appreciate even more than usual all the simple, little pleasures in life!

So, Without further adieu, I invite you to sit back, get comfy, and enjoy the show!!







purple divider - Copy - Copy

We’d love for you to join our big, happy, family!! Subscribe to our blog by email below and please consider sharing this post on your other social media accounts!! Thanks!!

Enter your email address:Delivered by FeedBurner

Posted in Bethany Moments, My Vlogs, Special Needs Family Life, Special Needs Parenting

Faith, Hope, and Love You Tube Vlog Videos 8/1/15-8/8/15

watch you tube videospurple divider - Copy - Copy
//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js //

purple divider - Copy - Copy

For those of you who would like to catch up on our M-F You tube vlog videos here rather than on You Tube, I promise to post them here every Saturday, unless of course, I forget!! Which I actually did last week!

I forgot because we were extremely busy preparing for Rachel’s college graduation and going away party which you’ll see in a couple of the videos below!

Just as at every big family gathering, Bethany looks forward to the idea of the celebration, but when the actual day arrives, she is initially overwhelmed, demanding, and a bit aggressive. And just as she always does, she did eventually settle down and enjoy the party to the best of her ability.  

Even better than catching up here, of course, would be for you to press that little red subscribe button down below and join our big, happy family!!

I invite you to come along with us every Monday through Friday as I film our efforts to find joy in all the ordinary, everyday, precious, little moments we are blessed with!!
https://apis.google.com/js/platform.js

When you have a child who has lived through the horrors of brain cancer with multiple complications and disabilities, you really do learn to appreciate even more than usual all the simple, little pleasures in life!

So, Without further adieu, I invite you to sit back, get comfy, and enjoy the show!!







I never in my wildest dream ever imagined that starting a You Tube channel would have such a positive impact on Bethany’s life! I really believe that watching herself being happy and behaving appropriately is both therapeutic and very beneficial for her. I think it’s really awesome that she has all these strangers that love her and God willing if she outlives us she’ll have all these to videos to watch and remember how much fun we all had together and how much we loved her long after Malcolm and I are gone! These videos will be a valuable legacy for her someday.

Since Bethany has responded so well to and loves her video shout outs, I decided to ask all of her fans, friends, and family to send me video clips or written messages wishing her a happy birthday and I’m going to put them all into a special birthday video for her. If any of you would like to participate, please use the following email: scphillips59@yahoo.com Thanks!! I’m really excited about this project!!


purple divider - Copy - Copy

We’d love for you to join our big, happy, family!! Subscribe to our blog by email below and please consider sharing this post on your other social media accounts!! Thanks!!

Enter your email address:Delivered by FeedBurner

Posted in Autism, Bethany Moments, Childhood Brain Cancer Survivors, Disability Awareness, Faith, My Vlogs, Siblings of Special Needs Children, Special Needs Family Life, Special Needs Parenting, Unschooling in Action

Faith Hope and Love You Tube Vlog Videos 7/18-7/25/15

watch you tube videospurple divider - Copy - Copy
//pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/js/adsbygoogle.js //

purple divider - Copy - Copy

For those of you who would like to catch up on our M-F You tube vlog videos here rather than on You Tube, I promise to post them here every Saturday, unless of course, I forget!!

Even better than catching up here, of course, would be for you to press that little red subscribe button down below and join our big, happy family!!

I invite you to come along with us every Monday through Friday as I film our efforts to find joy in all the ordinary, everyday, precious, little moments we are blessed with!!
https://apis.google.com/js/platform.js

When you have a child who has lived through the horrors of brain cancer with multiple complications and disabilities, you really do learn to appreciate even more than usual all the simple, little pleasures in life!

We’ve had our emotional and behavioral ups and downs this week! Seizures and aggressive behavior reared their ugly heads, but we also experienced some awesome little accomplishments and sweet victories too!

So, Without further adieu, I invite you to sit back, get comfy, and enjoy the show!!

purple divider - Copy - Copy

We’d love for you to join our big, happy, family!! Subscribe to our blog by email below and please consider sharing this post on your other social media accounts!! Thanks!!

Enter your email address:Delivered by FeedBurner

Posted in Autism, Bethany Moments, Childhood Brain Cancer Survivors, Disability Awareness, Homeschooling, My Vlogs, Siblings of Special Needs Children, Special Needs Family Life, Special Needs Parenting, Unschooling in Action

Watch Our Vlog Videos Week #1

watch you tube videos

Rather than clog up my Friday LinkUp with all our week’s vlog videos, I decided to post them all here each Saturday instead, unless of course, I forget!!

Naturally however, if I have a video that pertains to a post than I will certainly include it there!!

Even better of course, would be for you to press that little red subscribe button down below and join our big, happy family!!

I invite you to come along with us every Monday through Friday as I film our efforts to find joy in all the ordinary, everyday, precious, little moments we are blessed with!!
https://apis.google.com/js/platform.js

When you have a child who has lived through the horrors of brain cancer with multiple complications and disabilities, you really do learn to appreciate even more than usual all the simple, little pleasures in life!







purple divider - Copy - Copy

We’d love for you to join our big, happy, family!! Subscribe to our blog by email below and please consider sharing this post on your other social media accounts!! Thanks!!

Enter your email address:Delivered by FeedBurner

Posted in Bethany Moments, Homeschooling, My Vlogs, Siblings of Special Needs Children, Special Needs Family Life, Special Needs Parenting, Unschooling in Action

Special Needs and Homeschooling Blog LinkUp: Dreams Coming True

special needs and homeschooling blog lomkup

Welcome to the Special Needs and Homeschooling blog linkUp, the safe gathering place for special needs families and/or homeschoolers to share, support, and encourage one another!! I’m so glad you’re here!!

This linkUp opens every Friday at 5:00 a.m. and closes every Monday at 1:00 a.m. US Eastern Time.

purple divider - Copy - Copy

//
http://pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/show_ads.js
purple divider - Copy - Copy

In keeping with my commitment to positive living, finding joy in every moment, and respecting Bethany. I’ve decided that posting too much detail about Bethany’s behavior issues is just just plain too much information.

It was pointed out to me that posting about Bethany’s meltdowns might be embarrassing for her even though she can’t really comprehend embarrassment.

When I really thought about it, I realized that I wouldn’t want any of my own meltdowns posted for the whole world to see. So, I’ve decided that while I’ll still remain honest about our struggles, there will be no more detailed reports of meltdowns here at Faith, Hope, and Love!

I’d really like you all to read more about my feelings on the subject at No More Meltdowns.


purple divider - Copy - Copy

Last week Jeremiah, Rachel, and Rebekah took a trip to Fly Creek Cider Mill and here is the promised video of their adventure. It’s really cute if I do say so myself!

Rebekah’s wedding is fast approaching and I’m getting nervous about everything getting done on time and the big day running smoothly. It’s going to be a casual, simple country wedding, but there’s still so much to think about and organize, and having another kid that needs 24/7 supervision and is sometime uncooperative makes me almost useless to really help with the preparations very much.

I think that not being able to be fully there for my other kids in times like these is the hardest thing about having a high maintenance special needs kid.

I was really wondering just how I was even going to attend the wedding at all for a while because Bethany’s aide is a Bride’s Maid and I really have no one else that can supervise Bethany so that I can give my full attention to the bride! Thankfully , Beth’s old aide has returned to work from her maternity leave and has agreed to help us!

Rachel has planned a bridal shower for Rebekah for this Sunday so that should be fun. I am bringing Bethany along to the shindig and Malcolm is going to hang around in case she doesn’t want to stick around for the duration of the party!!
purple divider - Copy - Copy
Rachel’s dream of teaching English in another country is quickly becoming a reality. This time she will be there for two years!! She already has her reservation in for the training coming up in July and enough money for her visa plus a $500 donation on top of that. Some one has also offered to buy her a new computer as well!! She only needs $2500 more for her insurance and air fair.

This job will provide her with an apartment, food, two air fares for visits home, and a small stipend for other living expenses. It is her hope that this job will get her foot in the door and open up other opportunities for eventually getting a regular teaching job after her two year commitment is up!
purple divider - Copy - Copy

Jeremiah is sooo ready for school to be over and actually, so am I!!! I just need to order and administer his annual assessment and he needs to finish his study of North America and then we are officially done!!

purple divider - Copy - Copy

Bethany has been working on sight words, playing games, and being more independent at home and in the community.


Oh!! We also still have two very much alive woolly bear caterpillars and I have applied to the Dream Factory to help make Bethany’s dream of attending the Woolly Worm Festival in NC come true this coming October.

Thanks to a commentor for sending me the info about the festival. We have always wanted to apply for a dream for Bethany, but could never come up with something that we really thought she would enjoy. The Woolly Worm Festival seems like the perfect dream come true for her to me!

purple divider - Copy - Copy

Work has begun on the inside of the house and we have decided to put it on the market by August first no matter what may or may not be done on it. We have just got to get out of the sticks for all the kids’ sakes.

It will be weird having it be just me, Malcolm, Beth, and Jeremiah in the house. Our plan is to buy a 3 or 4 unit home. We’ll live in the largest apartment, our son Nathanael will live in one apartment, and we will rent out the rest to other people with special needs.

Then eventually, hopefully many years from now, Malcolm and I will transition out of being Bethany’s primary caregivers by moving into one of the smaller units and leaving her in the larger one with live in staff and other special needs roommates.

It tears my heart out just thinking about it and I honestly don’t know how or even if I’ll ever actually be able leave her, but somehow we need to prepare her for life without us.

Bethany will always have a home and an income from the rentals and I hoping that a sibling might want to live in one of the other apartments to keep an eye on things.

You might be interested in reading Self Determination Services for the Disabled in NYS.

purple divider - Copy - Copy

Well, enough about us!! How have you been? I hope you’ve all been awesome!!
http://www.blenza.com/linkies/thumblink.php?owner=Sylvatine&postid=23Apr2015&meme=12162