Saturday, March 19, 2011

March 21st is World Down Syndrome Day

Just a reminder that Monday, March 21st is World Down Syndrome Day. March 21st was also my due date when I was pregnant with Goldie. I guess she didn't want to be defined by her diagnosis since she chose to make her entrance ten days sooner!

Here is a link to the events going on in the United States on 3/21.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Down Syndrome Deals!

Woodbine House 25% OFF

MARCH 21 only!! Woodbine House is offering an online sale of 25% off 40 products on Down syndrome and related issues in honor of World Down Syndrome Day. The sale lasts just for one day -- March 21, 2011, so be sure to order online on Monday at

Talk Tools 40% OFF  DVD Sale

TalkTools is offering 40% off of their self-study dvds. I've also heard that if you call these dvds are available to parents for 50% off. Wish I had known that! If you are looking at the Down Syndrome Population dvd, mine is for sale. I have the CEU paperwork to go with it, as Goldie's therapists didn't need it. Just leave a comment or send me an email.

Down Syndrome: What You CAN Do
by Kim & Qadoshyah Fish

If you don't already have this awesome book now is the time to get it with free shipping until 3/21. Go here and use code GROUND305. I won a copy back in December and have referred to it numerous times since then. It is all the research I've been finding here and there, plus some a whole lot more, put together in one easy to use book. Just today I was ready the articles on Neurodevelopmental Therapy. This book is so positive and comprehensive; I wish it had been available when Goldie was born.

Goldie Knows the Alphabet

One thing I've learned is that Goldie is not a performer. She does not like to be tested on what she knows. A couple nights ago, Goldie got out her alphabet letters, so I grabbed the camcorder on the off chance that she would show off for me. I got lucky! Her are a couple videos of her identifying the letters of the alphabet. Part 2 includes some lowercase letters. You'll notice that instead of naming a couple of the vowels she tells me what sound they make.

Warning: the lighting is poor, her pajamas mismatched and the slip cover for our couch was in the laundry, but this is real life with 4 kids!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy Birthday! Goldie is 4

Goldie had a birthday last week! If you ask how old she is she will proudly hold up four fingers and say "four". After some practice she is even able to get her little thumb against the palm of her hand instead of behind her fingers. I never thought I would enjoy life's little details so much!

My favorite moment from her birthday this year: Goldie had done something she's not allowed, I don't remember what, and I was explaining why when out of nowhere she says, "Birthday. Four." and rooooolls her eyes. Like "Hello Mom, it's my birthday, I can't be in trouble. I get a free pass today!" Of course I cracked up after that, probably reinforcing whatever behavior I was trying to correct.

The last year has brought some big accomplishments! I'll list a few that I can think of off the top of my head.
- looking out for her brother (she was yelling "hurt" at him tonight as the went after an electric cord!)
- learning all the letters of the alphabet, upper and lowercase!
- asking and answering questions
- dressing herself
- beginning to sight read
- she can identify 9 different shapes and 10 colors
- growing tall enough to sit on the swing without help
- potty training, it has been over a month since we quit the pull-up habit!
- blowing bubbles
- turning door knobs

Wow! Just looking at this list has me excited for what the next year may bring!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Down Syndrome, ADHD and Sensory Processing Disorder

For over a month now I've had a half finished blog post titled "Down syndrome and ADHD" waiting for me to find the time to complete. Goldie was diagnosed with ADHD last month. I pursued the diagnosis for her so she would have access to treatments that I can't provide on my own.

Until recently, Goldie didn't have a consistent OT. I've inquired to her current and old OT about trying Therapeutic Listening or a weighted vest to help with her lack of focus and attention. I was beginning to think they were blowing me off, but I politely persisted.

Goldie's OT provided me with a sensory inventory to complete. I knew she would have differences in a couple areas, but the inventory revealed her sensory needs are much greater than we had realized. Her OT and Speech Therapist admitted that they had never observed behaviors that would indicate Goldie has a sensory processing disorder. We had a long and productive conversation where I was able to give the Occupational Therapist insight into her behaviors at home. Together we came up with some ideas to help Goldie.

Initially, it will mean more work on my part. My thoughts are that it can't be worse than redirecting her every two minutes! We already do a lot of sensory activities with Goldie like swinging and sensory tubs (probably why her behaviors weren't more obvious). Overall, I am relieved to know that this isn't just a "DS thing" and there is more that we can do for her. So when I'm not brushing, compressing joints and trying to keep the headphones on, I'll be working on some posts about these new diagnosis. If any of these are things you are already dealing with, I would love to know your favorite resources, books, etc...