Maria Writes Stuff

Womanhood. Motherhood. Autism Awareness. Book Reviews

Page 2 of 45

Ben’s ABA Therapy – Day 6


  • Asking for items
  • Fine Motor Immitation
    • Lace String
    • Buckle Belt
  • Sorting objects by similar shape
  • Responding to name with eye contact

Tutor’s Comments:
” We were able to work a lot today! Ben did really well with sorting items by shape. He scored a 74% overall…”

Ben’s ABA Therapy Report – Day 2.

The goals for today were the same as yesterday, although they added “transitioning to different rooms in the building”. 🙂

Tutor’s comments:

“We had another great day! We worked on asking for items the majority of the time. We are using “moo” for movie, and he is doing better with it. He asked for movie 14 times independently! We also worked on visual tracking and he scored 73% and 80% on that. Around 5:30 we came back from a break and he got upset, it lasted about 20 minutes. We worked through it and got back on track. :)”

Ben’s ABA Therapy Report: Day 1


What they’re working on:

  • Asking for items vocally
  • Responding to name/eye contact
  • Echoing tutor’s vocal sounds
  • Visually tracking items


“Ben did really well today! We worked on asking for items vocally.  We are having him say “Pah” for iPad and he asked for it 9 times independently! We also worked on responding to his name by making eye contact. He resounded to his name 10 times independently! We worked on visually tracking items in his environment. We found that he is tracking items when they are moved to the right and upwards really well! Overall, a great first day! :)”

Goals for 2017

  1. Read more. – I really enjoy reading. I read a lot of non-fiction, and strive to learn more too, so reading is a must. 🙂
  2. Get Ben settled into therapy. – I’ve sort of got the fall rolling on this one…I’m waiting for pre-approval from insurance before he can start therapy.
  3. Pay down medical debt. – We’ll see how this goes…as they tell me that it takes nearly 2 weeks to consolidate all of my bills from my surgery in May of last year.
  4. Don’t cry when Marjorri starts Kindergarten. – Yeah…tears will flow, I just know they will. I’ve already failed ath this one. lol
  5. Ride my bike more. – I was given a new children’s bike trailer for Christmas. I can’t wait to use it. In the spring and summer, bike riding might just have to become a part of everyday.
  6. Enjoy vacation. – We’re taking an anniversary trip this year!!

What are your goals for 2017?

Things Ben Likes: Autism and Gift Giving 2016/2017

Ben is our wonderful seven year old boy with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Ben is active, curious, and full of energy. He is also nonverbal. We aren’t able to just ask him what he wants for his Christmas, or even his birthday. Here is a list of things that he received for Christmas/his birthday (they’re a day apart). and seems to really enjoy:

This post contains links to products on Amazon.

1Kid’s Pod Swing Chair.

Ben really loves it! It swings, and swivels! It also doubles as a place for him to have time to himself (it kind of cocoons around him when he sits in it.).

2. Aurora Projection Night Light

I really love this! It casts a Northern Lights type of effect on the walls/ceiling. According to the packaging you can also have the lights put to music too (We haven’t tried this yet). I also love that this light projector is powered by electricity and not batteries!

3. Fat Brain Toys – Teeter Popper

The Teeter Popper is similar to the Spooner Board  It rocks and has suction cups on the bottom, so when you teeter and totter, it pops! All of our children enjoy this toy and have a good time sitting back to back and popping away! 🙂

4. Magformers 

This is a fun building toy! They’re magnetic and stick together! I really like that the magnets are placed under the plastic of each piece. Check this out for hours of fun!

5. Neo Tracks Light Up Vehicles and Neo Track

Ben received this has a birthday gift and really loved it. I think he played with it more than anything else! We set up the track and put batteries in the car, it was super easy and simple! Ben has even done it himself! 🙂 The car goes around the track and has lights that go on as the car travels around the track.

Pictures coming soon!



Traveling with a Toddler!

We just returned from our week long Thanksgiving break vacation. We, of course, traveled with our children (ages 8, 6, 4 and nearly 2). I thought traveling with our toddler Adeline was going to be a bit tough. Here are some things that I did to make the trip a bit easier and her (and us)!

I hid a couple favorite toys for about a month. To her,  it was like getting a new toy to travel with! The batteries had died in her Fisher Price Laugh and Learn Smart Stages Puppy, so I put it away (and bought new batteries) until our trip.

She played with it during the car ride really seemed to enjoy herself. 🙂
I also packed First 100 Animals, and  First 100 Words board books, a sippy cup (I highly recommend the Munchkin’s 360 Cups!), and a Snatch Catcher. My intent was to make diaper changes entertaining, drinks easily not spilled, and snacks as mess-free as possible. 🙂 We did great in the department…no spilled drinks or smashed pretzels to clean up!

I also remembered to pack her Glow Worm for when it was time for bed. She goes to sleep so much better with this little guy! I was also happy to discover that when you need to wash the Worm, you can take out the battery pack! Then put the doll-like cover in a pillowcase and wash! Awesome!

Addy goes to sleep every night with her Worm. She pushes the button a few times before she settles and falls asleep. I didn’t want to travel without this toy…in case bedtime became a difficult thing because we were in a hotel.

I hope you’ve found this post to be helpful in preparing for upcoming road trips with your toddler! 🙂 I wish you and your family the happiest of holidays this holiday season!


Product Review: MadisonRose Silicone Placemat with Built-In Plate

This a wonderful placemat for babies, toddlers and kids! I wish I’d known about this when my oldest was a baby and starting to self-feed. This is an amazing placemat with a built in plate. It’s made of silicone and is super soft/rubber-like to the touch.  The placemat and built in plate suction to the table/high chair tray where your child sits. I love this feature! Usually, my toddler will leave it alone until after she’s doing eating. If she tries hard enough she’ll be able to release the suction and toss it on the floor.




The placemat also comes with a free folk and spoon. The fork and spoon come with a really neat feature, that I wasn’t aware of until I washed them. Depend on the temperature of the water, the red portion of the spoon will turn white (and go back to red as it cools). I thought this was nice, as it can tell you if, for instance, your toddler’s oatmeal is too hot.

I highly recommend this placemat if you have a baby learning to self-feed, a toddler, or preschooler! It’s great! It comes in a variety of colors to suit your color preference. I bought the pink (which I realize in the photos looks a bit purplish).

*I received this product at a discount in exchange for my honest and unbiased review.
**This post contains affiliate links. 


Product Review: Dogwidgets DW-18 Dog Training Collar

This is a great dog training collar!
It took awhile for me to figure out exactly how to get everything working.
Some Tips: Charge both the collar and remote before trying to use, for at least 6 hours. To pair the remote to the collar hold down the power button on the collar, as well as the Y button on the remote. When they beep, they’re connected. I hope these tips help! Before testing the collar on my dog, I tested it on myself, and a level 4 shock was enough to not cause me injury but a large enough jolt to make me jump with surprise.






I have a medium sized dog and this training collar worked great for her! The level 4 shock was all that was needed (and I probably could have set it less for her). I only had to go through the functions of the remote with her one time before she got the idea of what was going on. She always came when called when wearing the collar. I left the collar on her for a few hours (in the booklet it suggests no more than 12 hrs of wear at a time), and she seemed fine. She did scratch at the color a bit, but that was probably more due to slight irritation of it being on, than any skin issues.
**Disclaimer*** I was given this product for free in exchange for my honest and unbiased review.
*This post contains affiliate links. 

Product Review: Tanmit 100 Gel Pens with Foldable Case

     I’ve never owned gel pens before. I recently got into doodling and coloring, so I was glad when I had the opportunity to purchase these pens. This set is amazing! I felt that the ink came out smoothly, and had a good consistency. It appeared to me (and I posted some swatches) that all the gel pens have some shininess/sparkle to them. 

     The colors of the gel pens range from metallic to what looked like pastels (but didn’t appear that way to me when I did a swatch…not all of them anyway). The set includes some nice neutral tones as well. I really don’t think you can go wrong with this product, as it seems to have a little bit of everything. If you are looking for completely fat (no shine, no sparkle) colors, this may not be the set for you. Be sure to check out the images below, and look at other reviewer’s photos too, it’ll give you a better idea of what the colors look like and if this set is what you’re looking for. I highly recommend it, as there are 100 different colors and the pens are good quality. They do come in a plastic case that folds together. I don’t think it’s the best quality case, but you could easily find another case or pencil box to store these in, I plan to. I hope you find this review helpful in your gel pen purchase!


 Other Photos

Primary and Jewel Toned Colors

Purchase These Pens

Metallic Colors
The Neutral Colors

I received this product at a discounted price in exchange for my honest and unbiased review.

Surviving a Cesarean Birth with Your Sanity Intact

If you’re reading this, chances are you’re either scheduled for a Cesarean in the near future, or you’ve already had one, and are browsing the internet with an infant in one arm and a pillow against your sore incision.

Girlfriend, I’ve been there…FOUR times! I understand completely what you’re going through right now. You may be scared, nervous, angry, in pain, or you may be in a complete state of euphoria due to increased Oxytocin levels and a love for a new baby.

Cesarean Birth

Here’s what I’ve learned through my four Cesareans.
1. Pain meds are  your BFF.
Take medication when it’s offered to you at the hospital. It will save you from what might be the worst of the pain (although, I can’t say that for sure..because I was always on pain meds in the hospital. lol).
2. (This might be more important than the pain meds recommendation). 
Abdominal support after a Cesarean is wonderful! It makes recovery feel more like you have yourself together, instead of that feeling that your innards just fell out. It’s also very handy to wear when you have to pee, bend over to change a diaper, and cough or laugh. If you laugh…you know the pain I’m talking about!
This one is similar to the one I was given at the hospital. After I shrunk a bit, I wished I’d bought another one a size smaller. 
3. If you’re nursing, use a breast pillow.
It’s a lifesaver when you’re sore and holding your baby! There are many different kinds of breast pillows available, some with back support and others without back support. I recommend the ones WITH back support, as my back pain was decreased tremendously while nursing, and it allowed the pillow to hug my incision and cause less pain. 
4. Invest in a Convertible Car Seat
 Choosing a Convertible Car Seat instead of an Infant Car Seat Carrier. The reason I recommend this is because they’ll tell you to only lift things as heavy as your baby for the first two weeks of recovery. During this two weeks you’re likely to have appointments with the OBGYN and Pediatrician to check on you and your baby, in my experience infant car seats are just too much to lift.

5. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help, insist on it! Ask for help, and remember you’re healing from major abdominal surgery. If someone is coming over to “see the new baby”, they should do a few dishes, take out the thrash as they leave, help make a meal…something…so that you don’t feel overwhelmed. If you’re like me, your anxiety will get to you and you’ll feel like you’ll have to do it all, in spite of the help. 

« Older posts Newer posts »

© 2019 Maria Writes Stuff

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑