Sunday, November 27, 2011


It is becoming a family tradition to celebrate the American festival of Thanksgiving by giving thanks for the birth families of our adopted children. This year we invited two other families along, so there were a total of eight children here not living with their birth parents (and Lily said we must remember Rachel's birth parents too even though Rachel wasn't here so that made nine). Noah was the only child not able to light a candle to remember his birth parents - (he was a bit disappointed to be told I was both his birth and forever parent!) so we let him light the first candle on the advent crown instead.

We made sweet potato with marshmallows on and pumpkin pie and were very pleased when the American family visiting thought it tasted like the genuine article. We also dressed the boys in their American T-shirts and put up our Christmas decorations as they do on Thanksgiving w/e in America.

Noah read a children's book on Thanksgiving then Lily read a simple book about adoption and fostering 'we belong together'.

As each child (or their parent in the case of young ones) lit their candle they could say what they wanted about their birth family and show photos - it was very moving when a teenager who has grown up in care said that finding her family at age 15 was the best thing that ever happened to her.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

my IPad at Noah's school

I was very calm when the teacher phoned and said did I know Noah had taken an IPad to school - of course I didn't. But I assumed it was the children's Ipad - the one protected by Otterbox case that Noah had been writing a social story on about our UK trip. Now I've realised it's my IPad he's got - my beautiful white with pink case IPad 2, my most prized possession, with my kindle and all my books on and no protective cover or screen. I am longing for it to make it home to me in one piece after school.
I had just been thinking how much Noah's behaviours had improved and how relatively easy it is to go out with him now - Even the trip to UK only involved one small accident with pull-ups because of the "evil toilet" on the plane, and some of the toilet phobia eased once we started keeping a diary of "toilets Noah has encountered" and giving him a bravery rating for each he used alongside his rating for the 'shape of the hole' this is the determining feature which can only be judged by Noah as to whether the toilet is nice, scary or "evil".
An incident last Monday brought home to me how lucky we are with Noah's behaviours really. Each Monday afternoon we are visited by my friend who has two children on the autistic spectrum - her son R is the same age as Noah and has Down syndrome and profound autism (no language or communication and not toilet-trained) she hadn't visited for a while with our trip to UK and my exams at Massey.
R is fascinated by the river and way back climbed from our trampoline into the neighbours garden and almost got into the river, so we are always very cautious. Usually he stays strapped into his wheelchair and watches his favourite DVD while we have a coffee, but our DVD player was broken and he wasn't so happy watching TV. My friend suddenly said "It's quiet" and we realised R had slipped out of his chair belt and must be upstairs - usually he just climbs into my bed between teh sheets if he has a chance - so I didn't especially rush to look for him, but just went to check if he was in the front garden - he likes to sit by the gate hoping for it to slide open. Suddenly I heard my friend scream and raced upstairs to find her pulling R back over our balcony - he had seen the river from our upstairs lounge and had climbed over the balcony to get to it and was hanging by his hands. Very scary

Saturday, November 19, 2011

UK trip

some photos of the recent trip