A picture can say it all…….


There was a time when I was really worried what people thought of me and the situations I was in when Teddie was having a meltdown (like in the picture). Now I actually couldn’t care less, in fact, I feel sorry for them people.

I have never claimed that my children are perfect because they really aren’t, but those people who turn their noses up at you or make judgemental comments do not live in the real world. Why can’t we just let kids be kids and let them learn from their mistakes if they want to have a tantrum in the store, let them, how can you teach your child what’s right and wrong without them experiencing everything EVERY child goes through.

This week I overheard a comment from a parent who’s child was pushed over, she know’s would did it (her words),  I had a feeling the comment was made for me to hear but I couldn’t care less if it was Teddie as put aside him having complex needs he’s a 3-year-old…….. all 3 years push at some stage!!

We had a big blow this week, after waiting 6 months already we were hoping Teddie would be seeing Cadu (Child Assessment Development Centre) in May but after calling to check I was told they are only just sending letters out for children who were referred in August, Teddie was referred in November!! There are 30 children ahead of Teddie so he may not be seen before he starts school in September!!

To say I was angry was an understatement, I completely appreciate they are snowed under but something has to give, they need more help to get through the backlog, how can children be supported without being put on the correct path.

Teddie is lucky he receives a high level of resources I have sourced for him but not every parent can offer or even know what’s available. Before long it’s the children that have waited so long for the correct diagnosis get branded the “naughty boy/girl” in school when all they want is the help!!

We will continue to push for everything and more if we feel Teddie will benefit from it, every day we see improvements and we learn so much from him!!




Of late I’ve really noticed how much Teddie notices when I’m on my mobile, camera or working on the laptop. He comes over to me and bends his head into mine to get my attention.

It became apparent early on that Teddie might be left out a lot of the time, We would either be with Harvey or Alfie and Teddie would just be plodding along, it’s something that I beat myself up about every day, I question if that’s the reason he has delays.

I think at times we are all guilty of saying “in 2 minutes, in 5 minutes” you say this for 15 minutes, in between the moaning, crying and constant asking/pulling, ‘give me 2 minutes’. If we had only just done it 15 minutes ago we would have saved ourselves 15 minutes of moaning and We would be back to whatever was so important not to do it in the first place.

Many autistic children/adults have intense and highly focused interests, Although Teddie doesn’t have that one toy he has to play with he shows certain signs of obsession and gets distressed when things are how he would like. For Teddie has hates mess, although he can and does make it if he spills his drink or knocks his bowl over he see’s it as a failure so he’ll get cross with himself.

Teddie has always shown signs of being advanced in certain areas, his number skills wow us every day, he can recognise the high-value number’s, the strangest of shapes and knows the alphabet backwards.

The one obsession Teddie has that gets in the way is having us all together, he hates it when we are separated.  If we are all out and say Alfie goes in someone else’s car all hell breaks loose, if we go out and Harvey stays at home (he’s old enough too) Teddie will cry for what feels like forever!!!.  when I try to get the boys in the car while Gareth’s doing his millionth house check, Teddie is letting the neighbourhood aware of what’s happening.

When I look at him as a whole he certainly does have tendencies of being on the spectrum, part of me hopes he gets a diagnosis so he’ll be offered more than what he’s currently getting.



Dinner time

I’ve always been honest with everything I’ve done as a parent as think its the only way you can really learn from it.

I’m not proud of some of my behaviours regarding dinner time for Teddie, As a baby food was never an issue for him, he had some allergies but grew out of them. Then one day I gave him something he really didn’t like and from there we hit a wall.

Some days I would be that ‘If you don’t like it, go without’ mum, other days I’d literally force feed him! there would be tears, snot, gagging you name it it was happening, it wasn’t a look and really wasn’t helping. What I was doing was actually only scaring Teddie rather than helping the situation.

I read somewhere (Cannot tell you where as I read stupid amounts a day now) that as long as your child is sitting up the table with you that should be good enough, So I clearly overstepped the mark then!!

Whenever I read something I always try to put it in motion, so thought I’d give this info ago. At first, Teddie wouldn’t always come to the table, he would see what was on offer then make a run for it, so instead of making a big deal out of it I just left him and eventually he made his way back to the table.

It’s so easy to let the kids just eat their food in front of the Tv in the lounge but it doesn’t help when they need to set up the table when they start preschool/school so its best to nip it in the bud early (although we didn’t). I know not everyone has a kitchen table but even just turning the Tv off at dinner time is a help and makes all the difference.

Dinner time now is so different, in fact, Teddie’s always sitting up the kitchen table even when he’s not eating. (which is most of the time, the boy likes his food!!) Now I always make sure he has foods he likes at dinner but I’ll introduce a food I know he won’t eat, if he eats it, brilliant, if he doesn’t then that’s fine. Making sure there’s one food I know he’ll eat keeps him at the table and sometimes get’s him to eat what else is on offer.

Its a preschool day.



We were super pleased to find out Teddie will be attending the village school where his middle brother goes (he’ll be in juniors though). I have set up a meeting with the head and their speech and language therapist for Friday, our phone conversation was really inspiring on both parts and feel Teddie will receive everything he’ll need come September.

Teddie always associate’s things with what’s happening, so this morning he saw his school jumper out, this can only mean one thing……….. today is a preschool day!! He was over the moon to see his uniform, he ran over to his pecs board and put up his pictures of what he’ll need to get ready.

School bag on his back and lunch bag in hand he was ready for school. Teddie’s never had an issue with being left in new or old environments, he welcomes change as long as he knows what’s happening. He went through a stage where everything HAD to be on his agenda, this is a stage where I think we have improved greatly in.

I put a gilet on Teddie this morning, although he could have got away without wearing one he’ll need something to put on for when it’s outside play. This is another thing where using things as an association, Coat = outside play! If Teddie didn’t put a jacket/coat on he’ll think he can’t go out and play and get upset.

Teddie’s preschool is an amazing place to be in, the environment is just superb for him and the other kids. It’s in a large hall which is just a reminder of my school, it’s so welcoming and the staff are second to none. Teddie has been a learning curve for them but they have been truly amazing with him. Everything we do at home they do in preschool, they started to use Pecs in preschool, they use Gemiini with Teddie so he’s using it in a group environment. Putting your trust in someone is so hard with any of your children but more so when they have addition needs, knowing he’s getting the support at preschool feels like a weight has been lifted as for some that’s just not the case.

What will be……



So the day is nearly here where we find out if Teddie has got his chosen infant school. I only put one school down, it’s where his brother Alfie goes (well junior’s) and its basically on our road.

I cried when Teddie started his first preschool, not just a few tears, I cried like a baby, couldn’t speak cry!!!!  I wasn’t crying because I felt I was losing my baby, I cried because I was worried his inabilities would put a divide between him and the others, he was so more vulnerable than everyone else.

I love being the boy’s mum, I put everything I have into my boys. I stay up late sticking their homework, I make all their costumes, I pack their bags, I’ll even tie their shoelaces (even Harvey who’s 14).  Being ‘that mum’ doesn’t always help them, especially for Teddie.

When you teach a child something normally other children do the same but what if they don’t….. I’m not entirely sure if children pick up on Teddie not talking, he plays with the other children at preschool with no problems.

When we were out this weekend Teddie played with a group of boys, I become aware that even though I heard the other boys talked to their parents, they hadn’t engaged in conversation with each other but were happily playing together so maybe it’s not as noticeable as I think???.

Teaching Teddie Pecs was and still is the best thing for him, but when knowing one else can do it sometimes its seems a bit pointless.

For Teddie to start school in September someone from the school has to attend a Pecs training course and be ready to use it by September.  Is it fair that schools, preschools don’t already use it or at least have the basics?.

We are so lucky Teddie’s new preschool has started to use Pecs and are even using the Geniimi programme with him in a group environment. I cannot thank the ladies from Wivenhoe preschool enough, What they do for Teddie goes above and beyond any other preschool we have come across.

I’m ready for Teddie to start school September, academically I have no concerns, my concerns are whether he’s assigned the right Lsa.

I cannot be there to support Teddie all the time but it’s hard to hand them reins over to someone who may not be able to do as good of a job as you. I guess we will have to wait and see……….

The life saver!!!


A web-based program clinically proven to increase language, reading and social skills for people with Autism, Down Syndrome, Stroke and others.

What can I say about this program, the only thing I can say is its a life changer for children, young adults & adults.

Evidence-based interventions do happen in preschool-aged children with learning disabilities but it is not clear if such intervention would equally be beneficial or even appropriate for children under 2.

Infant and toddlers differ from pre-school children in their cognitive and communication processes, but it is thought that early based intervention is a good ‘fit’ for children under 3 but some professionals (especially in our area) feel that getting any diagnosis or intervention difficult at this age.

A private diagnosis is an option if you can pay for one, but most local authorities won’t accept the results of private diagnoses. They insist on an NHS diagnosis before they will provide services to you and your child.

Every area and country differ on how they carry out the process of ‘getting help’, I know from our experience’s with Teddie we felt we were ‘palmed’ off for about a year.  Every appointment was met with a new therapist so every first appointment with the ‘new lady’ was a history of everything!

Then I came across gemiini when I was researching for a module I was working on, I looked into it briefly but did nothing in the hope Teddie would improve with the 6-week course he went on (we know how well that ended).


Gemiini is a web-based program that utilises an approach called Discrete Video Modeling.

Discrete Video Modelling is a clinically proven way to increase language, reading and social skills. It breaks down information into understandable and digestible bites, making it an ideal solution for people with Autism, Down Syndrome, Stroke and others.

Before starting with Gemiini Teddie’s word bank was around 0-10, we saw the progress others had had with it so we were excited to start.

The first video Teddie watched was ‘playing fireman’ ( gemiini playing fireman ) From the minute I put the video on Teddie was glued to it. The video starts with a little boy called Luke who says ‘fire’ he then runs out an open door, The video then freezes too a lady who says the word ‘Door’, you then see lots of different pictures of doors and the ladies mouth while saying ‘door’.  Teddie has never said the word ‘door’, he’s never said ‘mum’ so door wouldn’t be a word he would choose to say.  After watching the video again Teddie said clear as day ‘Door’….


Gemiini has given us so much more then helping Teddie with his speech, it has given him the ability to be just like the other 3 year old’s. Watching him wave, smile and engage with his preschool friends is like winning the lottery! This last few weeks we have seen such a change in him.

I know the change in Teddie is from watching the Gemiini video’s, he says a new word every day, he is more socially aware, more affectionate and just loving life.

gemiini.org getting started


It’s the little things……….


Yesterday Teddie did something that he’s never done before, he placed his hands either side my face and kissed me with so much love in his eyes, of course, he’s kissed before but not like this! 

The Last few weeks Teddie has shown so much emotion and just seems to get things. He always has a smile on his face and generally a happy 3-year-old!

Yesterday filled my heart, brought tears to my eyes and made be so proud of everything he is accomplishing as it’s not always been like this. 

 A few months back my sisters came over and we went crabbing with all the kids. We stopped off at the shop to get some bait which ended with Teddie having a mega scream fit, You know the kind where you wish you could teleport somewhere, anywhere but here.  All awhile those perfect mums, grandma and teachers all giving you the look of shame, how dare this child scream in a public place. He was screaming because I gave my niece 1 kinder egg out of the box of 3 I brought, How dare I………..

Teddie used to cry over the slightest thing, sometimes he’ll do that moan kids do that makes u wanna shoot yourself just so it stops, He’ll dribble on himself, tear a page in his book or just cry about everything and have a meltdown! 

How could we help him when we have no idea what’s wrong, He had no way of expressing or showing us how he was feeling. This is when I needed to find something other than Pecs.



Pecs it is then………


Teddie is without any doubt in the middle of ‘the system’, Speech and language are helpful but not actively helping.  He’s on the waiting list to see Cadu (Child assessment development unit) but the waiting list is 6-9 months and there’s no guarantee they will ‘take him on’. 

Teddie attended a 6 weeks speech and language course, which was in my view helpful. The feedback I received via a phone call was they thought there was a divide between Teddie and the other children. The strange thing is he was assessed and offered a place, but it goes by age rather than ability.  It was felt receiving speech and language wasn’t the thing right thing for Teddie at that stage?????????????.

There is no single behaviour that is typical of children with learning difficulties, where one child lacks in one area the other child can exceed in, It is estimated that 1 in 6 children have a developmental disability. 

After lots of research, I brought it upon myself to teach Teddie to use PECS ( Picture Exchange Communication System). Pecs has been successful with individuals of all ages, it demonstrates a variety of communicative, cognitive and physical difficulties.  

Teddie welcomes every new, I know if we started on Pecs he would have no issues learning it. You can buy PECS boards and the cards from their website but we decided to print our own, mainly because they are very expensive. 

PECS is by no means a ‘instead of’ system, the idea behind it is you use a card that corresponds to what you want. 

Every morning Teddie will come down and put something on his ‘i want board’, This morning he wanted toast, he actually showed us by using his cards how to do it, Bread, then toaster then a plate. This morning he wanted fresh orange drink so he used two cards for one thing. (see below this boards)

 Using a ‘first’ and ‘then’ board is a must with children with any disabilities, it just presents what we need to do now (first) and what we will do next (then). The idea is to show them a preferred activity or a possible reinforcer to motivate them to complete the thing they don’t want to do, We very rarely use this now as Teddie but its there for when we do need it.Pecs it is then….pecs-uk