The daily battle.

20 May

When you have a child with autism each day can be a battle.

From getting out of bed the right way…his way. To how he wants his cereal today or the toast cut. Often these things are done wrong & this results in a melt down. The next day I will try & do the same thing to avoid a melt down. 
The point of today’s blog is not only do I have to battle with my son, but also the health professionals.
I have had a letter through referring Olly for his blood tests. Letter says for him to go to paediatrics. Call hospital. Get put through to paediatrics. They won’t do his blood tests as he’s over 4. He was 4 last month.
Call normal blood test department. They won’t deal with him as he’s a child & also due to his autism & global delay.
Call hospital reception again. Lady was lovely. She couldn’t believe the trouble I was having. She decided to put me through to the children’s ward & explain my situation to them.
So, this Thursday, Olly is going to the children’s ward of our local hospital to get his bloods done. We have a 10:30 appointment but may have to wait if there are emergencies. This is not a problem. I will take snacks & books for Olly.
I am amazed that it was so hard to book a requested blood test. 
This is how it is. A daily battle.
I wouldn’t have it any other way. I will fight all the way for my boy.



Dieting. Or healthy eating.

16 May

I’ve recently made the decision to lose some weight. Again.

This time I am not on a diet. If I am on a diet, I have to ban certain things. You know, chocolate, cake, biscuits…all the lovely things.
This time I am healthy eating.
I am doing this through Slimming World*.
I am into my 3rd week and so far so good.
I have lost 4.5lbs.
I need the motivation of going to class. I have paid for 12 weeks upfront to keep me going.
On the Slimming World* healthy eating plan, nothing is banned. In fact you are encouraged to eat.
Most meat is free to eat. Including bacon! (Fat removed!) Fish is free to eat. Fruit, salad & vegetables are free to eat. Pasta, potatoes & rice are free to eat. Also eggs, legumes  & quorn are free to eat.
You must have some dairy & other carbs each day through Healthy choices. 
Other foods have a Syn value. Members are encouraged to eat some Syns (up to 15) every day. Some members use theirs for wine! 
There is also the option of flexible Syns. So if you have a night out planned, you don’t have to eat lettuce all night. You set yourself an amount of Syns & stop once you hit that. The next day, you return to the healthy eating plan as normal.
An example of what I eat:
Breakfast: bacon, eggs & mushrooms. Grapefruit. Banana.
Lunch: salmon, salad, new potatoes, very low fat mayo
Dinner: spaghetti bolognaise topped with cheese. 
Snacks could be some muesli mixed with yogurt or some fruit. 
And some chocolate! 
Next week, I hope to join a gym & start doing exercise to tone up as I go along. I hope to lose another 2 stone.
I will keep you updated on my progress!
*Other healthy eating plans are available! 


My youngest son

15 May

My youngest son has recently seen a specialist & has been diagnosed on the autistic spectrum & with global delay.

I first began to think Olly might a little different to other children of his age, just before he turned 3. I attended a parent & toddler group and began to notice that Olly didn’t interact with the other children. Nor did he talk as much as children his age and younger. 
To be honest, I ignored it. I thought he was a bit behind and he would catch up.
Last May,  he saw a health visitor who referred him to a speech therapist. A whole year later, he has seen the speech therapist twice & has been signed off for nursery to help him. To say I am not happy with this outcome is an understatement.  
Olly began pre school in September 2012. They are a fabulous set of “aunties” there. They genuinely care about all of their children. They have been brilliant with Olly. His Senco, Auntie Wendy has been a rock for me & I couldn’t have got as far with him as I have.
I spoke to her regarding his behaviour earlier this year. I said I suspected he was on the autistic spectrum. She refused to label him but said I ought to see my gp & get Olly referred to a specialist for a diagnosis.
We saw a doctor at the beginning of April and at that appointment he said he suspected Olly was on the autistic spectrum. We had a letter back saying he is on the autistic spectrum & has global delay. The global delay is his social side. He doesn’t interact much & doesn’t converse. 
So now I am on the roller coaster of getting further help & waiting for various appointments. Everything seems to take so long & some things (like speech therapy) are a bit of a fight.
I am in the process of trying to speed up his appointment with the educational psychologist as he starts school in September. I am going to meet up with a local support group on Friday. And I am going to get back onto the speech therapy department for some more help for Olly.
Basically, I will be fighting all the way for my son to ensure he gets all the help he requires. 
Oh & as I finished typing this, the educational psychologist called & we have an appointment on June 12th. I called this morning to hurry the appointment along! Image

Food cost & diet

12 May

I have decided enough is enough & I must get back to a size 12 after I was pushing going into a size 16.
I generally cook from scratch, but I must admit, I was snacking a lot on cheap crisps, chocolate & other snacks.

I bought the above in offer from various supermarkets.

Since joining slimming world 2 weeks ago, my shopping bill has rocketed.

Mainly on the huge amounts of veg, salad & fruit I am now eating.

We are all aware of how hard times are now. People everywhere are cutting back.

Food prices have soared. I remember a few years ago thinking 85p was expensive for a loaf of bread. Am lucky if a loaf of decent bread is under £1.50.

I do my main shop in Aldi. I menu plan & I buy food, cleaning products & toiletries when they are on offer as much as I can.

I have noticed that the cheapest food is generally the unhealthiest. The cereals on offer are the ones high in sugar. Multi bags of crisps/sweets/biscuits & chocolate are on offer & are prominently displayed in the supermarkets.

By comparison, fruit & vegetables are quite expensive. And if you are short of money but have hungry mouths to feed, cheap carbs will be the way forward.

30p on a packet of cheap biscuits or 30p on one apple. You have a hungry family, children who need regular snacks, you decide.

If you can cook & have the facilities, maybe you will cook from scratch & use decent but cheap food. Like this lady

Basic cooking has taken a back seat in recent years. Cooking programmes are all over the television but rarely are they aimed at us real people at home, trying to create healthy meals with an ever decreasing food budget.

Cooking lessons in school are near useless if my daughters lessons are anything to go by.

Unless you’ve been taught to cook by a family member or have taught yourself to cook, then you will be reliant on ready meals. Fat & salt laden & filled with goodness knows what.

It is no wonder there are more & more overweight people. It isn’t necessarily that everyone is over eating. Although some people are, I was! Cheap food is calorie laden with little nutritional value. It leaves you feeling hungry. So you eat more. And so the cycle starts.

The government has a healthy eating policy, I see posters in schools & doctors surgery’s. But until healthy food is made cheaper & unhealthy food isn’t on offer all the time, then I see no end to the raising obesity.

11 May

So, new year, new blog. And then I lost my mojo.

I didn’t really know what to blog about. Other people’s blogs were far more interesting.

Now I have some stuff going on & things to blog about.

I have the joys of selling my house & buying another one. The most stressful thing at the moment is keeping it tidy for potential viewers.

My youngest son has been diagnosed autistic & with global delay. I am coming to terms with that & trying to get all the support & help for him that I can.

Also I am on yet another weight loss journey. 3 years ago I lost weight & got to a target weight I was happy with. And then I put most of it back on. Buying some jeans in my current size & finding out the button wouldn’t do up was a bit of a shock. I decided that the company I bought them from had changed their sizing. Of course, they hadn’t.

So I have a few things I can write about & I hope you will find interesting to read.

Have a lovely weekend & I hope you will come back & read my next update.

The wonder of photographs

11 Jan

Do you remember having to ration how many photos you took? 

“There’s only 24 photos on that film” my mother would say. 

So you’d take the photo. You were unable to review the picture.

When the film was finished it had to be left at the chemist for a good week or sent off in the post.

Only when the photographs were returned did we see the outcome.  The one where a cousin had his fingers in a rabbit pose behind my head. Or someone’s eyes are closed. Or the photo is blurred.

There was an excitement in getting the photos.

Nowadays, with modern technology, we can snap a photo 24/7. We can view the picture straight away. We can delete those picture we don’t like. In my case, all of them! We can photo shop pictures. We can print them at home. 

But do we print those pictures? I must admit, I have hundreds of photos on my camera, my phone and a few on my iPad. None of them are printed. 

I bought a camera in Jessops last summer. When I was in the shop, I did wonder show the shop still traded in these modern times Little did I know that just over most this later, this chain would go under. Another victim of the recession and modern times. 

We all have access to the Internet. We all shop around. We want the best deal. I only went into Jessops as I didn’t dare buy a camera online, just in case it was too technical for me! In store,I was served by a knowledgable member of staff. She checked the shelf price against the online price and charged me the cheaper online price. 

I’ve used the camera. I’ve not had any on the photos developed! And I’ll use the camera more if anyone can tell we where the charger for it is! 

Ive included a picture of my toddler that he took earlier today on this iPad. I have over 2000 photos on this device, mostly taken by the toddler!

 That’s  my head behind him, I was cleaning the fish tank! Image

Potty training…again…

5 Jan

He’s still not wee’d


I am trying to potty train child 3. Child 1 and 2 were trained at just aged 3. I don’t recall it being  this much hard work. 

Said toddler will be 4 in April. I have been trying to potty train him for months and months. I have tried bribery, we have books on the subject. But he is stubborn. More stubborn than I could ever imagine.

Today we have tried again. My husband has made the white pants gang. Brown bear and Big bear are wearing white pants. We wrestled the unwilling toddler into his white pants. 

The two bears have done a wee on the potty (with the aid of some water!).

The toddler has yet to wee. And it’s nearly 4pm. He woke up with a dry nappy. He can hold. He appears to be in no discomfort. 

I have placed him on the potty. He will…

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