Archive for 2015

Mindful Monday- A Self-Compassion Exercise

Today we continue with learning what mindful self-compassion is and isn’t and try a simple exercise.

About Self-Compassion (from a Mindful Self-Compassion workshop with Kristin Neff, PhD)

Self-compassion is not:

  • Self pity (“Woe is me; no one knows the pain I do”)
  • Self esteem (Tied to what we do/achieve rather than who we are)
  • Self indulgence (Short –term pleasure or escape)

Self-compassion is:

  • Self-kindness (Treating self with care and acceptance)
  • Common humanity (“We all struggle. I am not alone.”)
  • Mindfulness (Allows us to be – without suppressing or exaggerating)

Read full post »

Why Do Kids With Autism Do That? Part 2

legosTo date, our most popular blog is Why Do Kids with Autism Do That? Not surprising I suppose, as we are always trying to figure out why our kids do what they do. We gathered more puzzling questions for our panel of providers and invite those of you who offered your own insight and perspective last time to join in. This time we asked Brandi Chew, PhD, Jo Ristow, MS, CCC-SLP, and Soo Kim, MD to share their thoughts and this is what they had to say . . .

Why do some kids with autism . . .

Learn unevenly – seem to take one step forward and then one back

Jo: The answer to this question could fill a book! In my practice, I see a lot of this unevenness when kids have difficulty translating (or generalizing) learned skills to different people, environments and items/activities. For instance, I’ve seen kids learn that they can touch a photo on the iPad to activate voice output and request a Skittle, but then not be able apply that learning to touching different photos Read full post »

On the Road Again

Adventures with Autism…

RVIn my “Too Many to Count” list of “Things Tried” to help our daughter break out of her restricted-interest-rut, the one I share with you today beats all. Yes, mama pulled out all the creative stops with this one. It was going to be one for the record books I was certain. That did indeed turn out to be true! 

When your child enjoys (count them) three things – done over and over all day, it can be maddening. In our case, it is (1) car rides (2) showers (3) cheese. A perfect day for Miss Carrie would be rising early, having a cheese plate for breakfast and then a long shower, followed by a very long car ride leading up to a cheese plate for lunch, followed by a shower and another long car ride. This sequence would continue until all the cheese, hot water and gasoline were gone, only to be replenished the next day because she is sure that an endless and free supply of these vital elements exists. 

Fellow parents, you know what I’m talking about! Some call them obsessions or compulsions or perseverative behaviors or restricted interests. Whatever you call it, our kids are stuck doing it – riding Read full post »

Water Safety This Summer

SwimmingIt’s that time of year- summer in Seattle! Living in the Northwest, we are surrounded by natural beauty, and everywhere you look, there’s water! The Puget Sound, lakes, rivers, and pools are accessible year round, and are particularly fun during the summer months when the weather is nice.

Being near, on, and in the water is a popular summer activity. One of my family’s favorite things to do over summer weekends is to head to the beach. The minute hit the sand, my 7 year-old is stripping off his shoes and socks and my 18 month old is struggling to do the same. I scramble to slather sunblock on their wriggling bodies, often wondering why I didn’t attempt this feat before we left the house. The boys and I run to the edge where the beach meets the surf and throw rocks in the water. Feeling the sand between our toes and the water on our skin can be a wonderful sensory experience, and one that many children enjoy and often seek out, including children with autism. However, having children near the Read full post »

Mindful Monday- About Self-Compassion

Image courtesy COE-onlinetrainingcourses.com

Today will begin by defining what mindfulness is and what mindful self-compassion is, then we will be moving forward with exercises you can practice in future blogs. As we previously announced, we are going to be posting about Mindfulness on the 2nd Monday of each month. 

Beginning with mindfulness…

In A Year of Living Mindfully, Richard Fields, PhD, highlights two aspects of mindfulness being: Awareness of awareness and attention to intention.

Fields also explains that, “Mindfulness is about embracing the now, good and bad. It is about not beating yourself up about lost opportunities and mistakes in the past. It is about loving and embracing the goodness in the life you have. It isn’t about pretending that all is rosy or replacing negative thoughts with positive. It’s accepting that life is full of good and bad, ups and downs, and that this is our common humanity. We all have adversity, we all have challenges. It is part of the human condition.”  Read full post »