A place to show my love for my granddaughter who lives with Cerebral Palsy and my passion for painting. In an effort of raising awareness for C.P. every painting brush stroke I make on raw canvas is a stroke of love, as I discretely paint a green C.P. awareness ribbon in every piece. Can you find them?Do you know someone who would like to have a painting done? email firstname.lastname@example.org
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
I am just so excited I think I am going to burst. This is going to be a great year for Hailey! Lots of alternative therapy happening for her. Things that we believe she will benefit from. I’ve spoken about Conductive Education in great lengths, through conductors, other moms, and shown videos. I think you all understand it better now. In addition to attending Conductive Education in May, Hailey will also be starting hippotherapy when we get back from Michigan. The first time I read about hippotherapy was a couple of years ago while vacationing in Florida. I read about a stable in Ocala that offered hippotherapy to children with Cerebral Palsy, the article explained how being on top of a horse could help build core strength. When we got home from vacation we immediately started looking into the centers in our state, Hailey was too young then, but we believe she is ready now. We recently learned that there is a center about 45 minutes away from us!!!!! Sunday we went to visit the center to get more get more familiar with hippotherapy and also to see how Hailey would react. I think the photos say it all...Hailey loved it. We placed her on top of a pony and she wasn’t scared at all (she’s a little daredevil anyway). In fact when I put her on the ground, she tried to crawl right under the fence into the horses stable. I think she is ready for sure.
This is what we learned about hippotherapy:
Hippotherapy is a physical, occupational and speech therapy treatment strategy that utilizes equine movement. The word “hippotherapy” literally means “treatment with the help of the horse” from the Greek word “hippos” meaning horse. Specially trained physical and occupational therapists use this treatment for individuals with movement dysfunction as part of an integrated treatment program to achieve functional outcomes.
In a controlled hippotherapy environment, the horse influences the rider rather than the rider controlling the horse. The rider is positioned on the horse and actively responds to his movement. The therapist directs the movement of the horse, analyzes the rider’s responses, and adjusts the treatment and horse’s movement accordingly. Specific riding skills are not taught (as in other therapeutic horseback riding programs), but rather a foundation is established to improve neurological function and sensory processing. This foundation can be generalized to a wide range of daily activities.
The unique nature of hippotherapy allows the rider to engage in activities on the horse that are enjoyable and challenging.
Why the horse?
A horse's walk and gait provides movement (or “sensory input”) that is variable, rhythmic, and repetitive. The resulting responses from the rider are similar to human movement patterns of the pelvis while walking. The therapist can observe and grade the degree of sensory input to the rider, and then utilize this movement in combination with other treatment strategies to achieve desired results. Riders respond enthusiastically to this enjoyable experience in a natural setting.
What are the benefits of hippotherapy?
Occupational and Physical Therapists use engaging horseback activities to treat children as young as 2 years of age and throughout their teenage years. This increasingly popular method helps clients meet their individual clinical goals including: improved gait, mobility, strength, and balance; sensory processing and modulation skills; & endurance and independence. Therapists also target communication and behavioral skills through these therapies.
Functional limitations that may be improved with hippotherapy:
• Gross motor skills such as sitting, standing, walking
• Speech and language abilities
• Behavioral and cognitive abilities
Who performs hippotherapy?
Therapists who perform hippotherapy are actually physical, occupational or speech therapists. Hippotherapy is the treatment strategy used by these skilled practitioners to achieve functional outcomes.
Does the therapist work alone with the rider?
Therapists performing hippotherapy normally work with a horse handler. This individual is charge of the handling of the horse during the treatment session. The handler has received extra training in handling horses specifically for hippotherapy.
Monday, April 18, 2011
Friday, April 15, 2011
For those who have been asking, this is a must see video...this is a great depiction of what we will be doing in Michigan with Hailey! Can't wait to give her this opportunity and thank you to all who have helped to make it happen, whether it was fundraising efforts, purchasing a painting or general support etc. This is the kind of thing your efforts have helped with.
Thursday, April 14, 2011
Retrieved from ams vans blog.
An international team merged together in an collaborative effort to create a new way for artists to create art using only their eyes, and they succeeded by creating a very low cost solution that you can build yourself for less than $50 with free software and detailed video instructions.
The invention has been a lifesaver for artist Tony Quan, aka Tempt One, a legendary LA graffity writer, publisher and activist. He is now creating art again, something he has not been able to do ever since ALS left him completely paralyzed except for his eye movement.
“Art is a tool of empowerment and social change, and I consider myself blessed to be able to create and use my work to promote health reform, bring awareness about ALS and help others.”
The team has taken a projection device out into downtown Los angeles to display Quan’s art live as he drew it in his hospital room. The designs were visible from the freeway as drivers watched the creations take place.
The next step for this international dream team is to connect ALS patients together online to create eye art as well as build a network of software developers, hardware hackers, and urban projection artists.
This project was made possible by Members of Free Art and Technology (FAT), OpenFrameworks, the Graffiti Research Lab, the Ebeling Group communities, the Not Impossible Foundation, with additional support from Parsons Commucations Design & Technology.
Are you interested in creating an Eyewriter for someone? Learn how to build one yourself with the detailed 10 step process here.
learn more about the Eyewriter for disabled and paralyzed artists from their official website here.
Wednesday, April 13, 2011
Monday, April 11, 2011
Some may think this is good information while others may wonder why have I posted this video, now predators know how to locate you. Well, i'm from the school of "knowledge is power" I believe that the people who are sick enough to be able to do such a thing already have the knowledge and those of us who are not need the heads up.
I have always been leery about writing online about Hailey and posting photos etc. It initially drove me crazy when pictures of Hailey were on Facebook. Because I don't have the education about all of the technical jargon, it frightens me,I am paranoid. To justify my blogging and sharing Hailey's experience with the world I will try and put it into context. I believe in this big bad world we live in we have to be extremely careful with our children whether it be on the internet or in our schools, at the park, in the mall at the grocery store and in our own homes for that matter. I believe the "real world" is just as harmful as cyberspace. Child molesters and predators are lurking everywhere. More often than not it is someone who we trust. A creepy uncle, step dad, teacher, priest care taker, the list is endless. We worry about our children constantly, and we should. Bottom line is that I don't completely trust anyone ever. Keep your eyes open, use your head, listen to your child and if your child is non verbal be even more conscious of her surroundings and always, always listen to your gut instincts.
So that being said, I would like to share the many benefits that I have found from blogging. First of all, I always, always question my own decisions. I question writing this blog in general, I wonder if one day Hailey will be able to read this blog and think to herself "why would my Grammy put my story out there for the world to read" well, besides thinking that Hailey is just an amazing little girl or maybe it is because I can't help but see the sunshine in her beautiful smile. I truly believe that this blog and others like it benefit many people out there with disabilities, it connects parents who are being judged everyday by people who have no idea what they are going through, and it also raises awareness for people who have no idea at all about others who are living with special needs.
By blogging I have discovered resources for Hailey that we would not have discovered had it not been for the internet. Conductive Education is the perfect example, this is an alternative program that we believe will totally help Hailey on her road to independence. It is a program that we would not have heard about from her amazing doctors, therapists or teachers. Reading other blogs about other children in similar situations has educated me and inspired me. In return I am able to do the same for other families. I especially like reading about others who are older than Hailey and it helps to hear them say that despite the many challenges that you will face, despite how difficult things may become, you are not alone and things are going to be o.k.
If and when Hailey is able to read this one day, I hope she will realize that through her journey, she was able to help others along the way, both with her struggles and her triumphs, and that Grammy did this out of pure love for her.
If you are a special needs parent and care to share how blogging has helped you and your family, please share your comments, I would love to hear.
Monday, April 4, 2011
Well, it’s almost here...what is almost here you ask? May is almost here, May is when Hailey will be traveling to Michigan to go to her 4 week session of Conductive Education! I’m very excited, I know this will be good for Hailey it will challenge her and it will teach us how to help her to be a bit more independent. This is great right??? Then why am I so nervous? I think part of my anxiety is the long road trip. Because of the amount of equipment Hailey will need, and the expense of renting a car for 4 weeks etc.etc. The kids decided it would be better if they drive instead of fly. My son Tom thinks I am crazy for worrying about this kind of thing, but that’s what I do. I worry about things that others don’t, it is sometimes a blessing and most times a curse. It will take a total of about 14-15 hours to get there from here. I know, I know it isn’t that bad.
The plan is to take 2 days to get there stopping in between, maybe for a little sight seeing excursion or maybe just to get a good night sleep before continuing on the road.
The pictures above show the ipad headrest that Tom and Natalie purchased for the trip. What a great idea to pass the time for Hailey! She loves to play games on the ipad and this will allow her to watch movies on Netflix and listen to her music as well. This nifty accessory is designed to instantly turn her ipad into a rear-seat in car entertainment system. I like to think of it as a portable drive-in movie for Hailey. O.k, o.k. I am already getting less anxious thinking about what fun she will have with this. I bet the time will just fly by and they will be in Michigan before I even have time to worry.
Grampy and I plan on flying down to meet them there the last week and driving back with them. It will be an educational experience for us all. I bet the education doesn’t end when CE comes to a close in Michigan but continues on that long car ride home as Hailey teaches Grammy how to use the ipad.
For my special needs families who are thinking this is a must have for their car, this headrest is put out by siig and only costs about $30.00