Posted in Autism, Down syndrome

Summer Break

Summer Break

Summer break

I’m taking the next two weeks off for a summer break.  There are plenty of great stories and information about Down syndrome, autism and more in the archives located on the right side as you scroll down. Dig in and enjoy them! Thank you for reading and sharing Nick’s world.  Have a great 4th of July holiday and be safe.


Posted in Autism, Down syndrome, Fun Side of Nick, Recreation/Leisure and Special Needs

Summer Fun


This week, a look back at summer fun over the years.  Nick enjoys vacations especially if there is swimming involved.  He is now 21 years old and has Down syndrome and autism.  Click on this link to view @

That’s what is in my noggin this week.  Happy summer to everyone and thank you for reading and sharing Nick’s world!



Posted in Autism, Down syndrome

Blog #119~Autism Survival Kit

Blog #119~ Autism Survival Kit

Recently I was reading a Facebook post.  It was a poll, asking parents to name their number one necessity item needed for their child with autism.  This got me thinking what would I include in an autism survival kit?  My son Nick, is 21 years old and has Down syndrome and autism. Here is a list of 21 things that you might want to pack in that survival kit.  Note, the last 4 are MY essentials 🙂


  1. Rug shampoo machine
  2. Plumbers snake
  3. Paper towels in bulk
  4. Deadbolt or key pad locks
  5. Child proof locks and rubber bands for cabinets
  6. Noise canceling earphones
  7. Weighted blankets
  8. Swing set
  9. Mini trampoline
  10. Essential oils with a diffuser
  11. Chewy tubes
  12. Figit toys and stim objects
  13. Melatonin
  14. Back up iPads and iPods
  15. Laminator for PEC pictures and schedules
  16. Nail polish remover
  17. Back up clothes for trips and community outings
  18. Coffee
  19. Wine
  20. Earplugs
  21. A good sense of humor

Figit toys…..

figit toys

Transition Timer….

transition timer

Laminated PECS pictures….

IMG01 (13)

This is why I included nail polish remover….

photo (116)

School is going to be out for the summer. ESY (Extended School Year is a short day), so arm yourselves and be ready.  What is YOUR necessity item that you would add to the kit?  I’d love to hear it!  That’s what is in my noggin this week.


Nick sensory toys

Posted in Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC), Autism, Down syndrome

Blog #118~If You Can’t Fix It, Duct It!

Blog #118~ If You Can’t Fix It, Duct It!

duct tape

I reported two weeks ago, that Nick’s talker (AAC device) has survived being dropped from the second floor of the Naperville Library and onto the railroad tracks off Montgomery Road.  The case is sturdy but has taken a beating.  Nick is 21 years old and has Down syndrome and autism.  He’s a crafty one.  It’s all we can do to keep up with his antics.  The school team has come up with two things to secure his talker better.

ipad touch chat

First, the team has devised a bumper around the iAdapter case with foam and duct tape to absorb the impact. I’m thinking that we need to patent this prototype.


In addition, Nick has it tethered securely to his body with two straps (one over the shoulder and the other around his waist).


Nick is using his talker to make requests for iPad, Sprite, food items. When he burps he pushes the buttons, “excuse me” or “that’s gross”.  The other night I was busy doing laundry and getting dinner ready.  He was getting impatient and growing tired.  He proceeded to push “stop”- “I’m tired”- “I want to eat”.  When he finished dinner, he pushed the buttons “finished” and “bedtime”.  I’ve also noticed that he is using more verbal language since getting talker 2 months ago!

At home I figured out a way to tether it to a shelf with Velcro straps in the kitchen so it’s accessible.  So, between the straps and duct tape, we are staying one step ahead of big guy (at least for now). Hey it’s Nick’s world, the rest of us are just trying to keep up.  That’s what is in my noggin this week!