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About Innisfree

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    Hive Mind Queen Bee

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  1. There's ABA and then there's ABA. The original form has been criticized, perhaps justly. I haven't had any experience with that form of ABA. ABA as it is often used now is more of a broad umbrella term. Lots of techniques are used, but it's essentially positive reinforcement of desired behaviors coupled with careful, meticulous analysis of *why* behaviors are happening and how to replace less productive behaviors with others which are more productive. In order to accomplish this, a good relationship between child and behaviorist (BCBA=Board Certified Behavior Analyst) is necessary. Two+ years after finishing ABA, dd still misses her BCBA. She found the sessions very enjoyable. I'm thinking of starting up again to help with the transition to school. Others here can speak more authoritatively about ABA practices, but our experience was entirely positive.
  2. I've been following this with interest, as we're in a similar, not identical, place. Similar elements being 14yo asd kid with multiple diagnoses, including anxiety. Mine will be returning to public school next year for multiple reasons, but strongly resists the whole idea. We get the head-on-desk and sleeping-all-day reactions when things feel overwhelming, so I can relate. We are having school refusal, too, because dd says that I have decreed she's going back to public school next year, so she's done with homeschool. Spectrum kids are great at being absolute. This is where we are. We're spending hours every day letting dd volunteer with animals. It's partly outside, and involves some exercise. It involves some, limited, dealing with other humans, who are kind adults who nonetheless have expectations. It means dd has a responsibility which she takes very seriously. This is the best thing in her life right now. She is proud of what she's doing. Could I motivate her to do school by threatening to take this activity away? Maybe. But-- the schoolwork really is overwhelming for her. The difficulties are not a product of her imagination. She will not be magically able to cope because I take away her activity. She needs more help and support, and that's why we're going through getting accommodations for next year lined up now. Medication might help, but she's refusing it, and she's too big to force. So-- mental health comes first here. A book I've found which might be helpful for you, too: Good luck. I don't really have any solutions, but I am walking the same sort of path. I hope you can find some things to help your ds. If computers give him joy, I'd try to find a way to give him some access, probably in a public part of the house and under some supervision. Maybe there's some computer -related work he could do for someone? And some way to get outside, and get some exercise. Anyway, good luck.
  3. We've been feeding our dog Victor for a while, with good results so far. You might check them out. On the Facebook chart you linked, they seem to be in the clear for DCM, though as you note it's a small sample size. They have gluten-free meat-and-rice formulas without peas, etc., but they do include alfalfa meal. I *think* that's made from the entire plant-- not sure if that's better than just peas or lentils. Less starchy, anyway. In their FAQ section they say they have a nutritionist on staff as a VP; I don't know about testing. I'm not sure exactly what defines a boutique dog food company. Victor is relatively small, but doesn't seem frou-frou-ish to me, lol.
  4. Gentle hugs. Hope he feels better soon!
  5. We didn't have a recliner when dh had his rotator cuff surgery, so he tried to sleep propped up in bed and on the sofa. He says the recliner is important enough that you should buy one if you don't already have one. (Ahead of his surgery he didn't expect to need it that badly. He did.) If you have problems with pain meds working, talk to the doctor so you can sort that out ahead of time. Do the PT religiously. It helps enormously.
  6. That's hard. I think humans change, their interests and energy and health change. Letting resentment grow because of an activity one no longer enjoys might be another way to "let down" a spouse: in other words, the change in the relationship happens whether one does the activity or not. So the trick is to be honest and respectful and open in finding the best way to preserve the relationship while altering the participation. Is there a possibility of finding someone else to take part, like Homeschool Mom in Az suggested?
  7. Is it something that will naturally stop being a part of their lives as kids grow up? Or is it something the enthusiastic spouse would continue after kids stop being involved? Could they do so at a less intense level, or is the continued presence of both spouses really essential? In general I'm in favor of talking a lot about things like this, so everyone has a realistic picture of how the future might look to others.
  8. I'm sorry. He's putting you in an awful position. I would be furious and worried together.
  9. Yes. Costs to adopt from some rescue groups can look high, but they're generally a bargain compared to getting all the medical work done independently.
  10. No idea, but it sounds like time to see the doctor. I hope you can get some useful information so he can start feeling better.
  11. Disclaimer: I've only done this once, and it was some years ago. But since no one else has answered, I'll bite. I read about hugelkulture, and since our yard was poorly drained and I wanted to both create raised beds and increase organic matter, and since we had old logs sitting around rotting, I gave it a try. All I really did was to work up the soil like I normally would, then place logs sort of half-buried in the beds, then cover with soil. The soil was topsoil I had delivered, though, since what we had was largely mucky clay. Then I used organic matter on top: mostly I used rotting leaves, which I had in abundance, but once I used straw instead. This was just a mulch layer, but it was good and thick. For planting, though, I planted under the mulch, directly in the soil. Results were pretty good. We did get several years of good harvests, mostly because of the topsoil I had brought in, I think. The logs decayed very slowly. Some bits may still be there, I haven't worked those beds up yet this year. Organic matter must have increased significantly. I know for years I had the most fantastic earthworm and general bug population. I think that was more due to the leaves on top than to the logs underneath, but probably with time as the logs rotted they helped too. The most visible result was that our drainage problem in that part of the yard vanished. I think the soil was able to hold a lot more water. Productivity declined after a few years, and I haven't had enough time or energy to look after the garden well in recent years, so I haven't added more organic matter or fertilizer lately. I never used a cover crop. Never used wood chips, either. I think I'd want to plant in soil, not chips, and I'd want to make sure enough moisture and nutrients were available. But experimentation would be fun.
  12. I bought that after that thread. It is wonderful, so thank you to whoever mentioned it! It doesn't get in the can, so it doesn't get wet or dirty like others do. Eta mine is slightly different. It doesn't have whatever that is on the end, I didn't look closely.
  13. So, if sensory issues seem likely, you could see about getting an evaluation with an occupational therapist who could confirm that suspicion, get you a diagnosis of at least that part of the picture, and-- most importantly-- help you figure out how to satisfy that need for sensation. There's equipment you could get, like spinning platforms for vestibular input, or soft weighted balls to throw, or all kinds of other stuff. It's at least partly a matter of being able to figure out, "oh, she needs *this* sort of input." Then if you can provide that, in a way that's safe and planned, maybe she can calm down a little. Or maybe not, lol. I agree she sounds super smart. If you get any sort of diagnosis at this stage, that might open the door to early intervention, which might get you a little help. Around here there are special preschool options which are fully funded, like public school. That might be good for her and give you a break.
  14. For years dh has had recurrent respiratory and sinus infections which can get very bad, requiring multiple courses of antibiotics and weeks out of work. He noticed a significant reduction in their number and severity after his doctor told him to get a pneumonia vaccination, even though he never actually got a pneumonia diagnosis. He's been recommending the vaccine to others.
  15. Could she have sensory issues, and be seeking sensory stimulation?
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