Thursday, August 27, 2009

Liam is 5

Happy Birthday Liam


Liam ready to be transported to the Mercy's NICU ward.
I finally get to hold my little precious. It was the first time I had seen him in 2 days. I was sooo excited. This was taken later in the day as Kris had been in Sydney when I was told I could go to the Mercy. Deb & Mum to the rescue :)

Today was Liam's 5th birthday...its also the first time since he had his first birthday that he has been healthy on his birthday. So it was very exciting for us :). The day started off with Kinder (for which I had made 2 batches of cupcakes inbetween aquatic OT, getting more ingredients and afternoon kinder). He yawned through the birthday song, but there were lots of eager helpers to help him blow out the candles as he doesn't do that (Or so I thought....) he blew at the candles too. Imagine my excitement...he had never done this before EVER. My main problem was usually stopping him grabbing the flame. Fortunately he was a little better about that this year as he understands "hot".
Then it was off to Maccas with a couple of boys and their Mums from the kinder. It was really nice. Ok Liam didn't "play" with the other kids, but he was certainly aware they were there and he was also quite happy to sit at a different table with them. I was really touched that they had been willing to come at short notice particularly Sue (who not only had to be elsewhere at an hour after kinder, but whom I had only asked the day lovely is that). Not only that but the gifts were both thoughtful and useful and took into account Liam's autism. I was soooo touched. There are a lot of good people out there, sometimes we just have to be brave enough to let them in.
In the evening Simon and Beth came around. He actually started running up the hallway when he heard them come in, but he was sooo excited he fell over and came back to me for a cuddle. There was more cupcakes, being tossed around by his brother, sparklers and a firework. he had a very full and busy day.

Liam at Darling Harbour, Sydney (2007)

. At Bondi Beach (2007). Liam just adores water. If I hadn't been there we would have just kept going in deeper. He loved the feeling of the waves rushing back out. I tell you we both got rather wet, but had loads of fun.

Playing with Simon & Beth (2008)

Liam and his brothers (August 2009), with Simon, with Adam.

And the headlines for the day....remember how I went to my craft class. It turns out we were lucky where we were, although the suburbs around us were not quite so fortunate. My sister, Jenny & Mum lost power, as did Vikki. Many suburbs lost power. At Mt. Evelyn, the SDS was running on a generator even on Thursday and you could see the chopped up remains of trees. Other suburbs had been similarly affected as trees and power lines were down. A friend's in my craft class couldn't get home for a few hours as her suburb was virtually cut off. Every second tree in Tim's street came down. It was a very cold night.
Back to the Herald Sun...the front page featured a story on how a footballer might not be available for the "big match". I think someone's priorities are all wrong: I think the storm Tuesday night was a tad more important. Even an avid football supporter we spoke too thought it was ridiculous.

Me and my boys (June 2009) ... massive grin :)
I just adore my 3 sons.

Love to all,

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


Guess I've been out of circulation a bit. Rather sad its taken such a lovely quilt as Kellie's to get me to blog again. Can you believe she is giving this away. I cannot believe it. it is sooo gorgeous :) too.
You can find info on how to enter here. Hopefully this works as I had forgotten what to do. LOL

BTW I would also like to thank everyone who responded to my night-time ruminations. I know I haven't got back to you all yet and for that I am sorry. (Brenda you have no idea how much I appreciated what you had to say and some of your stories on your blog have been both funny and heartwarming... )
Anna, Karen, Sue & Liam, I am so fortunate to have met you, even if its only virtually. Lyn...thanks for your kind words and I'm glad to have been of some help. Vikki, you are a good and talented friend...hope Rosie has a lovely birthday, Thursday. And finally my wonderful sister Debbie, who is always supportive and whom I wish I was more like.

Liam is going along very well and I am feeling a lot better too. In fact its his birthday tomorrow.

Well I have a craft class tonight, but its wild and wooly outside with the rain, wind and hail. Not exactly inviting, yet its been quite nice today. I expect this too will soon pass. Huh It! (no pun intended) LOL. Thats one good thing about the Melbourne, the weather frequently changes....hee hee hee
Its of to craft I go, Its off to craft go.....

LOve to all

Saturday, August 15, 2009


This fabulous give-away is happening on i have to say
but you only have 'til Sunday to enter. Sorry about the late notice. You can win a priority paid envelopes (up to 8 yards worth of remnants (at least 6" a piece). The piccy shows one of the piles this lady has. Don't they look gorgeous.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Catch 22, autism & the education system

Its 1.45 am. Its been an hour and he may still awake. I've lain in bed listening to him happily burbling, "chatting", guerring and playing with his blind, but hes gone he asleep? Meanwhile my mind has been racing, leaping from thought to thought...I call it monkey brain (its a term I heard somewhere) and it aptly describes the chaos going on in my head.
We have one more assessment to many ways and professionals does one have to have say that Liam has a problem.
He's quietly chattering, maybe he's getting sleepy :)
Its all rather black...I want shade and light and colour (and humanity), not pigeon-holing.

Liam turns 5 this month. The catch 22 is that he is eligible for another year of early intervention. If he was a typically developing child (sometimes political correctness helps, sometimes....), with his physical health issues, he would have repeated another year of kinder. Its well known that physical illness in itself can cause developmental delays. This is the first year Liam has appeared physically robust, but its still not uncommon for me to be called to collect him from kinder as he has fallen asleep.
He's silent again
I know I would have been advised to do another year of kinder and allow him to mature. When Simon started school, one of the boys in his year just starting was a almost 2 years older than him as he had been too unwell to start school earlier.
Liam isn't normal though and although children with autism are developmentally delayed that doesn't matter. Here comes the second catch, Liam is on the wrong (I use this word deliberately), ie severe end of the spectrum. This is compounded by moderate to severe intellectual disability. If he cannot go to a mainstream school, he has to start school the year he turns 6. If Liam was higher functioning he could have an extra year of intervention and kinder, even if he needed an aide at school. If Liam was normal ( how I dislike that word...its so excluding), he could repeat 4 yo kinder or like his older brother or cousin repeat a year of school to allow him to mature as they did. These are not options for him.
Perhaps I should check up on him, but I don't want to disturb him unless I have to.
All this negativity being flung at you gets to you eventually. I still have hope, but I just wish the system was a little more flexible so he could start school a year later. So I wouldn't feel that being at the wrong end of the spectrum was disadvantaging him further. Surely there should be hope for my child, not just for the ones who are higher functioning.
So Liam will go off to school next year, ready or not. I am very happy with the school we will be sending him to. They do specialise in autism afterall :).

One very important thing I have to add here is that the professionals, aides and teachers who work with our children are truly wonderful people. They all do it by choice, because they want to. All three special schools we visited were welcoming and Liam was obviously as comfortable there as we were. It was a soothing, calming experience for both Kris and I. We know Liam will be well looked after and hope still exists for his potential to be realised.
I cannot believe he is still awake. Imp! adorable imp, but still...
I think I better go see him...usually when this happens a snuggle and a bottle re-establish the sleep routine.

Then perhaps my brain will behave itself and have a rest LOL

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Viki Sherman Angels

These are a couple of the other angels I did in 2003. There are a couple of others....a pink one on our living room wall and Deb has an aqua one (but I seem to have no photos of these two). BTW the owl was inspired by a Japanese fabric as Kris's aunt loves owls.
As you can see I am using material and doing some embroidery. This was more or less my stitching limits at this stage.

This is my Dad's cousin Ivan & his wife Ro, who we stayed with in England. Ivan and Dad were very close, almost like brothers.
They are a gorgeous couple. We all love them dearly. Its a shame we live so far apart.

Elefantz Giveway and other musings.


Jenny of Elefantz has been busy designing a Christmas 9 pattern pack of stitcheries, which you can see here. To celebrate she announced a giveaway. You can win a vintage tin, georgeous xmas fat quarter and buttons. All this whilst moving across country (and Australia is big) and settling in to a new location.
Anyone who has been to her blog would have seen the lovely Shabby Roses free BOM she has been doing.

Other Musings

On the Liam and me front. Well I spoke too soon. On the 27th we went swimming, had lunch out and wondered around the shops....then fell in a heap over the next 2 days. Liam is fully fit now, which is great. I'm still not, my asthma is causing major problems.
Kris has been terrific though (OK we lived on take-away for a week but...LOL) . He has been taking Liam to Mt.Evelyn, Irabina, swimming and kinder as I am unable to drive. Even feiling out assesssments or dropping them off to the relevant people. He even took me grocery shopping (a pet hate) and then going on to work.

You know when my last child went to school all I had to do was turn up and enrol him with a vaccination certifiacte. With Liam there are reports from Speech pathologists, paediatricians, pyschologists, kinder teachers, hearing assessments (imagine the poor child who hqas autism and is deaf as well...when would that child get help, afterall they are not mutually exclusive conditions. So as you can imagine getting these 8? or so assessments done and getting really ill at the same time is the a particularly good idea. Still the end is in site. Oh and I still need the immunisation certificate....course Liam hasn't been well enough for his 4 yo shot yet. He was ill last year and I wanted him to settle into his new routine firsr, then I forgot...
Oh well!

BTW, I have finally started sewing again. Yippeee....sanity should return soon LOL
Though Deb's books have kept me going. Not to mention the blog hopping.
I have found some lovely new sites.
Had a lovely message from Karen in the funny that I should have been where she lives just 6 years ago. We were visiting Vikki & Scott just before they emigrated to Oz. Must have made Vikki at Sew Useful Designs a wee bit nostalgic too.
Vikki & Me in Milton Keynes...My hair was longer and I was thinner (big smiles)

Aaahh I'm getting nostalgic too...we had a lovely week at their place, I had bought Vikki some Oz mags and an angel I had painted and stitched for her....and I got to see the lovely softies she was making. She is very good.
The angel I painted for Vikki was designed by Viki Sherman in her book "Kindred Hearts". The idea and design of the embroidery and the butterfly was from a lady in my class aat the time called Judy. A lovely lady , who's surname escapes me. I painted a few different versions of this at the time for other people we were staying with, myself and Kris's aunt.

We had never met before either so it was great it worked out so welll and she was happy to have relative strangers in her home. We also got a tad drunk (very unlike me...Ok I'm usually gone after a glass, even my nieces and sons rag me about it) , had a BBQ, went to Portsmouth (where Scott lost the car keys) checked out Hanslope (where they were living...lovely country village), craft shops and Milton Keynes. It was over way too quick.
Vikki & Scott, Portsmouth
It was lovely being in England again and it will always hold a special place in my heart. It was funny travelling from the far side of the world to feel as if I was still home, even after all these years. I guess I'm lucky to have 2 such wonderful "homes".