#frugal calm idea to destress with #FASD, #ASD, #TBI to provide #Live Abilities

Don’t forget daylight savings time and the changes it may cause for your loved one.

Liz has made it easy for you Daylight Savings! $10 off $50 + Free Shipping!^ Code: DAYSAVE. Puritans Pride Brand. Valid 11/2/14.

A long time ago we discovered essential oils to help our daughter and in the process over the past 20 years they have become part of our almost daily emotional first aid kit. In fact, if I carry a purse, our favorite oil travels along with the neuro therapy I have in my heart and hands for Liz. Neuro is a series of special massage techniques we designed together to calm her energy. Over the years we have honed it down and tried our strategies with success for many others. Over the coming weeks we will share this with our readers. Make sure you buy the 100% pure!

It works! For boys who think this stinks – try cedar wood…

Save 50% – 3 for $19.47 – Only $6.49 each

Plus add the Daylight Savings Offer “DAYSAVE”!

As most families with special needs children and adults we have dedicated our lives and our finances to helping our loved ones. That means we have to find the best prices  with the best products…

Today there is a DAYLIGHT’S SAVINGS SALES “DAYSAVE” we want to share…

We love Puritan’s Pride. AND WE JUST GOT THE CODE!!!!

Daylight Savings! $10 off $50 + Free Shipping!^ Code: DAYSAVE. Puritans Pride Brand. Valid 11/2/14.


What hurts the hearts of persons with #FASD?

 “I gotta get away from that kid!”  James Gideon opens your heart to FASD!

Words can be painful.

Guest Blogger – James Gideon, FASD counselor and life coach. James uses his deep wisdom to help children and teens in the justice system understand themselves through his horse program. James can be followed at FB on Flying with Broken Wings.

James is one of our beloved FASD Survival Strategy Teachers

JamesGideonGo get a full drink of water before you read this post and while you read it hold your arm out straight. The water is not heavy is it? At least not in the beginning, but what if you had to hold that glass for five minutes or an hour or a day. That little glass of water would get pretty heavy if you don’t put it down. Eh?

Well guess what?

Relationships can get pretty heavy if we never get a break from each other either. I understand that people like myself who live daily with the challenges of FASD can feel pretty heavy to others, but try to live in our skin and you’ll realize what heavy is. We’ve been holding that glass our whole lives! Imagine what our brains must feel like and our emotions must feel like never having the choice to even get off the roller coaster ride. Some days seem to slow to a normal which feels like an opportunity to stop to get off this crazy ride….  ..then @*!)… …..and then &*^%*!—swish—something whips me back into my seat and without taking a breath here I go again. JamesGideon-Horse3It may be a physical, mental or emotional thing that rips me back into my seat.  Or more likely it is a small combination of little tiny things I was not even paying attention to because life was finally going ok.

  1. I did not notice I stayed up a bit late…
  2. …then I had too little to eat… I did NOT drink any water for too long of time. 
  3. I got frustrated with a project I had been working on 

…and all of a sudden “out of no where” came a noise or a flash 

and here I go again

And I thought I had learned…
been healed! 

Lot’s of well meaning people have offered suggestions that may work for nuerotypical people, but for those of us born with misrouted paths and circuits once you are on this ride there is no getting off. It is going to continue going around and around for a lifetime.  So please don’t say “around us who struggle daily with brain issues” that people with the typical brain needs to take a rest from us.

I have heard caregivers say, ‘I need to get away from that kid he’s driving me crazy!’ In front of the child!

Imagine being that child or youth and someone who is not very stable living with a FASD. Imagine how hard their life is already. All this statement will do is compound the trouble. It is too easy for us to think we are horrible and that we are causing people problems. Think about how it must make us feel and think when we hear stuff like that. And where did I hear it taught? I heard it in a class I took when taking the FASD Course—COLLEGE!

JamesGideon-Horse2Do you know what a horrible feeling it is to hear such horrible stuff from people you are trusting as experts.

There are words that go around the neurotypicals (average brain) folks. I have heard quite often, that caregivers can take a break from us and its a good thing to take a break from us, but imagine what it must be like for the person living with fasd, we cannot take a break from it and how people should take a break from us. Maybe it wasn’t meant to sound that way but it did. And I understand that all of us need a break from time to time

  • I need a break from working every day — so I go home or I take a vacation or I do something just for fun.
  • I need a break from being awake — so I sleep.
  • I need a lunch break — so I eat.
  • I need a restroom break — so I use the bathroom.

But when you put a person or a type of person into the equation–and make it personal by needing a BREAK FROM A SPECIFIC HUMAN BEING. It becomes personal. And when you paint it with a broad brush across a whole spectrum of people — with a difference — age, creed, race, disability — it feels like bully behavior. Everyone can use downtime and I get that when you are caring for or about a person living with the challenges of FASD you are on full speed all the time. But think of how it feels when someone want to be RID OF YOU or the whole group of people like you!

Remind yourself of how you would feel if you were with a group of co-workers or friends and someone said, “I can’t stand ____, I just gotta get a break from her.”  

In many cases the person making the statement has the opportunity to leave if they choose or the capacity to find a gentle way to get a break. People with a major difference do not have the opportunity to leave. Caregivers get breaks when we finally fall asleep… ok ok maybe you need weeks of sleep by now…

Let’s be practical…
Let’s make things easier for all of us…
We have a large group of voices now speaking out as adults to help this gene ration of caregivers.

  • How can we change the environment to make life less stressful?
  • How can you encourage in a gentle way communication with your person?
  • How can you enjoy that energy inside of your person in good ways?

If a problem seem impossible to solve – turn it upside down or inside out.
Or look at the backside before you look at the front.
I know our energy and loudness can be overwhelming and exhausting to others. Guess what? We will share it! Ask your bundle of energy to share with you, ask him to sit beside you, hold your hand and give you some, give you some so you can clean, cook, run the block with him, play with his trucks cars or video games, just let him know you want some too and its not fair that he gets to have it all, he needs to share. Just to sit beside you and share it, sort of like boosting a battery, you need a boost and he is the only one to give it to you. Then join forces and give him a task to help you get something done! I still even as an adult have difficulties talking about my feelings and thoughts, sometimes I would rather have a meltdown and so some damage than to talk about it, seems to work a lot easier. But then later life gets more complicated because of it. For me I need to get myself into a gym and workout everyday even if its just walking and pushing some weights. When I have lots happening inside me I have issues of getting it out. I don’t like that part about me but I try and get through it. Sometimes it doesn’t work the way I want it too.
 And then I compare myself to others instead of realizing I am doing the best I can. And that is okay. Each struggle and each day I learn and grow stronger when I have people who love me that I can trust.  I love coaching and consulting out of the goodness of me heart, I love to help others and sometimes people don’t have the money to pay for services. I dream of opening a respite home and take in parents or children who just need a break.

Respite for all  — Parents need a place to retreat and to refresh themselves for a weekend or a week with peers they can share their stories and learn new ways of loving and thinking. AND their children and youth need a fun learning camp to give them time to refresh themselves. Believe it or not, we peeps who live with a fasd need time away from mainstream and the typical brain people, we can’t always live the way you want us to, sometimes we need to pretend, we need to run like a jack russel, we need to make believe that life is in a candy forest, we need to go through a paintball park and just get crazy, we have needs you may think are silly – but we really need to be able to let down and let go in a safe place where people understand us.

Remember – The person you love living with the challenges of FASD is SUCCESS, as soon as she steps out of bed, walks to you, hugs you, calls you mommy, she is SUCCESS. Don’t measure her success the way society measures success, don’t compare her success to others, allow her to be SUCCESS and tell her she is SUCCESS!

5 Heart Smart Steps for Anger Management

Five Heart Smart Steps for Anger Management

Conflict happens to everyone. 

For persons with hidden differences these conflicts can be invisible until there are so many that the person explodes. One hurt builds upon another hurt and no one sees it happening. Conflict self-care is an individual responsibility, but how can we manage it before it grows out of control especially if we deal with FASD, ADHD, SID, ASD and all those other silly D’s.

Some of the things that may cause hidden conflicts others do not see or understand:

  • When I am blamed for something I didn’t do, it is easy to immediately go on the defense because I am not able to confidently dance verbally around the reality. I don’t know what words to use to protect myself so I go off to keep the person away.
  • When someone uses a big voice instead of speaking to me with kindness, I can feel the hard or aggressive tone and when I feel that tone I am triggered. It is different coming from a woman or a man. From a man it is deeper and I may be triggered quicker because I believe at that moment they are being mean and I react to protect myself. I go into defense to defend myself and I do it without thinking I simply react. With a woman when the voice is firm or bratty, it doesn’t make my heart jump so I am not on automatic snap, but I may still be rude to give myself time to think about what just happened. 
  • When plans are quickly changed it is overwhelming and frustrating because I have worked my schedule around the situation, and navigated  to get there which can be very difficult on public transportation or relying on another person. I even have to sometimes reschedule my medication times to make an appointment work, so I can be functional at that appointment. I know people without my differences don’t understand the extreme rudeness change is for me and how it affects my life.  

1. When your heart is upside down – BREATHE first!

BREATHE – Something has turned your heart upside down… frustration, confusion, bully behaviors, overwhelming situations or just life in general. Realize emotions you may consider negative like anger and pain are not always bad.  

  • BREATHE deeply into you belly until you can hold no more air think ‘I can get through this, I can handle this, I can do this.’ (One way is to count in 7 short breaths)
  • BREATHE out your feelings of hurt or anger until you have no air left in your lungs and you need to take another breath. Repeat. (One way is to blow out 8 – 1 long breath and the 7 short breaths)
  • Do this as many times as you need to… Repeat – repeat – repeat

If breathing is not working – 

2. Place your hands together and press hard

PRESS YOUR HANDS TOGETHER HARD (like praying flat hands) AND BREATHE- Continue breathing and press your hands together hard. This is when I say “_______, give me love, peace, joy and understanding.” 
  • RAISE YOUR PRESSED HANDS ABOVE YOUR HEAD AND BREATHE  –  This helps the tightness I feel in my shoulders, arms and neck. I continue to I say “_______, give me love, peace, joy and understanding.” 
  • RAISE YOUR PRESSED HANDS ABOVE YOUR HEAD, MAKE A BIG CIRCLE OUT AND BREATHE  –  This helps the tightness I feel in my shoulders, arms and neck. I continue to I say “_______, give me love, peace, joy and understanding” or sometimes by this time I can simply be quiet…. 
If I am still overwhelmed – 

3. Grasp your hands together and hang on for the ride!

GRASP YOUR HANDS TOGETHER (like folded praying hands) AND HOLD ON TIGHT NOW  BREATHE- Continue breathing and grasp your hands together hard. This is when I say “_______, give me love, peace, joy and understanding. Against such things there is no law.” Try to relax your hands as you breathe.

  • RAISE YOUR GRASPED HANDS ABOVE YOUR HEAD AND BREATHE  –  This helps the tightness I feel in my shoulders, arms and neck. I continue to I say “_______, give me love, peace, joy and understanding. Against such things there is no law.” Try to relax your hands as you breathe.
  • RAISE YOUR GRASPED HANDS ABOVE YOUR HEAD, MAKE A BIG CIRCLE OUT AND BREATHE  –  This helps the tightness I feel in my shoulders, arms and neck. I continue to I say “_______, give me love, peace, joy and understanding. Against such things there is no law.” Try to relax your hands as you breathe. Usually by this time I am ready for a walk or thinking time. 
Open your new heart – 

4. From your praying or grasped hands open your hands into a new heart – now right side up!

  • TAKE A MOMENT FOR YOURSELF – Give yourself a pat on the back for stepping through another hard place. Go for a walk, listen to music that is peaceful, look at something in nature that is beautiful to you (clouds, flowers, trees, animals). 

Take the next step – 

5. Reach out to another person and share your new wisdom.  

  • IF YOU LEARNED SOMETHING NEW from this experience of riding your anger safely through a cycle let someone you love know what happened, how you managed it, what you plan to do again and what the person can do to help you navigate this if needed. 

  Do the best that you can.

 Each one of us can reach another in kindness and love. 

Do something for another today.

Special thank you to POWER PEOPLE
Sam, Liz and David – for their counsel in the development of this program. 
Please share in fullness with our connections –  2013 Better Endings New Beginnings

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How to help children with fetal alcohol understand and think

The Kulp family home schooled for five years and over that time we learned to meet the children we schooled at the level of thinking they were capable of at the moment. Depending on rest, stress, diet and daily schedule abilities fluctuated. We have provided the Hierarchy of Thinking Skills by Benjamin Blom to help you work, live, laugh and love your child. Armed with this information you may be able to take an assignment or project and adapt it to the child’s success. This developmental chart and over 30 others are available in our 3rd Edition of Our FAScinating Journey – Keys to Brain Potential Along the Path of Prenatal Brain Injury by Jodee Kulp

Blom’s Taxonomy Hierarchy of Thinking Skills (Benjamin Blom)

1. Knowledge — To remember information you have learned. Remembering facts, terms, definitions, concepts, principles.
  • recognition
  • recall

What?Who?  list, name, define,describe, order, recite, list, record, recall, label, reproduce, match, repeat, underline, state, recognize, relate.  
By  books, facts, events, TV, radio, newspapers, magazines, films, tapes, CD’s and movies
2. Comprehension — to understand the meaning of things learned.
  • interpretation
  • translation  
  • extrapolation

Explain. How?Why? interpret, summarize, give examples, predict, translate, arrange, locate, indicate, describe, restate, sort, classify, translate, express, discuss, extrapolate.
By  d
iagrams, puzzles, logs. stories, games, journal, reports, task cards, illustrations, drawings

3. Application — Using information in a new way to solve a problem.
  • implication

Apply compute, solve, modify, construct, sketch, practice, illustrate, measure, schedule, choose, use, demonstrate, prepare, operate.
By diagrams, model illustrations, photographs, sculpture, model stories, diorama, scrapbook, puzzles, mobile, collection, map

4. Analysis — to break down knowledge into parts and show relationships among those parts. Physical, historical, functional descriptions 
  • elements
  • relationship
  • organization

Examine. How?What? analyze, diagram, question, appraise, test, calculate, discriminate, distinguish, categorize, compare, criticize, contrast, experiment, inventory.
graphs, charts, surveys, events, diagrams, objects, reports, commercials, puzzles, questionnaires.
5. Synthesis — to produce something original from elements and components of previous knowledge. To bring together.
  • unique communicate
  • plan or set 
  • abstract relations 

Organize. Bring togetherarrange, design, prepare, assemble, formulate, propose, collect, manage, set up, compose, synthesize, create, plan, write, construct, modify, conduct.
By stories, news, articles, poems, games, magazines, TVshows, cartoons, recipes, plays, songs, machines, puppet shows, hypothesis, advertisements
6. Evaluation — to make judgments based on pre-established criteria.
  • internal evidence (logical accuracy, consistency)
  • external evidence (application of external criteria)

 Support. Why?Why not?  appraise, estimate, select, argue, evaluate, assess, judge, value, attack, predict, score, compare, rate, defend.
Bypolls, group letters, surveys, recommendations, evaluations, panels, simulations, discussions, news items, court trials.

Sleep Strategies for Children With Fetal Alcohol

Wear them out – wear them out I repeat – fun and laughter and sunshine and water and dirt and play. Running and jumping and fun after school or being overwhelmed in learning new things. A healthy meal and then begin to build in household peace.
Bringing calm to a household of atypical children can be difficult. By developing a sleep transition system you provide your children a lifetime strategy to learn to calm, rest and gain sleep.

We found over the years that the following things made a difference:

  1. Begin shutting off blue light (cell phones, television, computers) two hours before going to bed and change sounds in the home to quiet music or soft nature. Move to a warmer spectrum of lighting. Blue light (which is the light we have during most of the day limits our production of melatonin, in the absence of blue light, melatonin production increases and we get sleepier. 
  2. Shake the “zingys” off – we found rapidly waving the hands, kicking the feet or shaking the whole body helped move energy. “We cast off the troubles of the day.” All the yuck fell off… or at least we tried.  If you have night lights this is the time to engage the children to tip toe and slowly turn them all on while turning house lights off or dimming them mouse quiet.
  3. Prepare a warm bath with a chamomile, lavender, sandalwood scent and let the child soak while you write your to do list for the morning and then leave it! 
  4. Dim the lights.  We had a BETA FIGHTING FISH in a night lighted tank in the bathroom that was always alert to protect children padding in to go potty in the middle of the night. If you are staying in the bathroom while the children bathe, use a scented candle and dim the lights. I put the candle away when I am done and hide it.
  5. Tumble the towels and pajamas in the dryer to warm and wrap a child. Drying with a warm towels helps in the transition of leaving the bathtub and warm pajamas help in the transition from towel to bed clothes. 
  6. Practice some gentle slow stretching – help your child find stretches that are soothing.
  7. Read a kind, happy story with child in bed (Goodnight Moon and Nuzzle: Love Between a Boy and His Service Dog). We found a number of gentle reading places – the hammock in the summer, the porch swing or rocking glider, a snuggly day bed, bean bags and puppies, a tent bed or into their room. Settle in the critters – stuffed animals, service dog or pet dogs, dolls, cats – into proper places. Click to see children’s tent and trundle beds | some great hammocks
  8. Soft circle touches or brushes from knee to toes, elbows to fingers and on face – clockwork circles beginning at the 6 o’clock help to soothe (children with sensory issues may need different kinds of touches – some days our daughter wants light friction or deep pressure – she usually has an idea of what will help her best.)
  9. Mist the monsters. We use a spritzer with lavender, chamomile, sandalwood, or sage to scare out whatever might be in the closet or under the bed. 
  10. Give a day of thanks. We say prayers. This final quiet time is for remembering all the good things in the day and being thankful and asking for protection for all the people we love – prayers in our house could take a while because even neighbors dogs or the tree squirrels could be added.
Now it’s mom and dad’s turn. Depending on the rules in your home – ours was unless you need to potty after prayers you wait until the sun comes up to get out of bed – in the summer THAT could be early! This is the time I write in my journal or read before I fall asleep or at least quietly eyes closed rest.

Read more about blue light

Following are some fun bedtime sleep tents and trundles – some children need very empty rooms – for others these are marvelous. 

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