Bonding with Your Baby with a Disability

Attachment is a lasting bond that develops early in a child’s life. Attachment can occur between the mother and child as well as with others: dad and child, grandparents and child, even foster parents can enhance a child’s life through attachment. Attachment is more than just an emotional bond, it is a critical component to the healthy development of the child. Children who experience attachment and feel the love of a caregiver have a better chance of growing into adults who are capable of sustaining lasting, close relationships. Some parents find it difficult to bond with a child who has … Continue reading

Explaining Illness to Your Preschooler

Last night as I was busily typing on the computer, my daughter wandered into my office. In her “I want to ask you something but you will say no” voice, she said, “Mom?” “Yes, dear.” “Mom?” “Yes.” “I have diabetes.” Well no, she doesn’t have diabetes. I have diabetes, and I wear an insulin pump, count carbohydrates, and all of that fun stuff. She watches me use my pump, change my pump sites, insert big needles into various parts of my anatomy. Sometimes I poke her finger to check and see if her blood sugar is all right, and once … Continue reading

Author Interview – Tracy Winegar on Autism

Yesterday I reviewed the new book, “Keeping Keller,” a touching novel about a young boy with undiagnosed autism. Today I am joined by Tracy Winegar, author of the book. Tracy, thank you for taking the time to chat with me. I’m curious—what inspired you to write “Keeping Keller?” Ever since my childhood I have been a writer, so it’s always been a dream. A few years ago I told my husband I was thirty, with four children, and it was never going to get easier. I decided if I didn’t write a novel then, I probably never would. My husband … Continue reading

Wheelchairs in the Windy City

In a previous blog I mentioned that Chicago was recently named one of America’s most disability-friendly cities by the National Organization on Disability. Not only are all of the city’s public buses wheelchair-accessible, but also each summer Chicago hosts the largest Disability Pride Parade in the nation. To learn more about what the Windy City offers disabled travelers I would suggest ordering a free copy of a new guide called “Easy Access Chicago.” It includes basic visitor information for popular city attractions such as Millennium Park, Navy Pier, Wrigley Field and the Sears Tower, along with details on accommodations like … Continue reading

FLOOR TIME: Promoting Logical Thinking

This is the fifth and last blog in my 5-part floor time series. (“Floor Time” refers to getting down on the floor with your special needs child, and becoming his or her personal play therapist.) There is so much you can do as a parent to help your special needs child develop communication, motor, and social skills—and you only need to play with your child using a few particular techniques! If you’d like to start at the beginning of my five-part series, click here. At this point in your floor-time sessions, your child should be tolerating your presence, taking turns … Continue reading

Planning for Your Business in Case of Emergency–Part One, Natural Disasters

Unexpected things happen–fires, floods, tornadoes. Or a shift in your family or personal life can have a very direct effect on your home business. It helps if you have a contingency plan and are prepared in case an emergency presents itself. While this won’t always be possible or probable. Thinking through what you might do in case of an emergency can help you feel better prepared. One of the realities of running a home-based business is that if there is a house or home emergency, both your family life and your livelihood can be affected. Whereas, if you work outside … Continue reading

And You Thought You Had It Bad At The Gas Pump

How much are you paying for a gallon of gas these days? Around here the price is hovering around $3.50. Outrageous! But, not as bad as in Aspen, Colorado where unleaded gas prices recently broke the $4 mark. If you think that’s bad consider this: some disabled drivers are getting socked even harder because they can’t get out of their cars to pump gas themselves. Some gas stations are charging disabled drivers up to 50 cents more a gallon for the same fuel you and I are filling our vehicles with. I learned about the gas rip-off during a recent … Continue reading

Fun, with a side of understanding – hold the nuts

My gal likes to be the one to find us a plum spot when we pull into any parking lot. She will scan the area, swinging her head from side to side, and do her best to line up a prime location for our car to rest while we shop. Recently, on a trip to Whole Foods, she thought she had a great one, right in front of the store. Little did she know it was a handicap spot, complete with blue paint on the ground and a sign planted into the earth. She was upset that I did not … Continue reading

The Family Business

When families think of their personal financial planning, it might be helpful to consider how business companies work and how corporations plan and use their financial resources. With a business the main objective is to earn a profit and efficiently use the businesses capital, to gain a return on the original capital investment. The goal is to achieve a level of success consistent with the level of risk the business assumes. Businesses and corporations, make financial decisions all the time they use their profit funds and the anticipated rate of return to lean many of the choices the make. Take … Continue reading

Should a Severely Disabled Girl Be Allowed to Grow Up?

It’s a question I would never have considered possible. But today I read an article that was both fascinating and troubling. PEOPLE magazine reported the heart-wrenching story of a nine-year-old girl with severe disabilities, and her parent’s controversial decision to use hormones to halt her growth and physical maturation. (PEOPLE, “Girl, Interrupted,” January 22, 2007, by Macon Morehouse.) Ashley, from Seattle, has static encephalopathy, a condition of the brain which has left her developmentally like an infant. She is unable to walk, speak, and is typically seen propped with pillows, because she dislikes being strapped to her wheelchair in an … Continue reading