no chocolate

Cold Turkey

When someone mentions cold turkey most people immediately think of the withdrawal symptoms associated with coming off drink or drugs for example. Not, the giving up of something for Lent.

Lent is a religious ‘thing’ and I was brought up to be religious. Since becoming an adult my views, beliefs have changed somewhat, in fact they’ve changed a lot. However, something that has stayed with me is the giving up of something for Lent which I do now purely for the challenge and nothing else.

Rewind three few weeks, Pancake Day. I was in turmoil over what I should give up. I knew it had to be something big and I wanted it to be different from the norm (chocolate). I toyed with the idea of alcohol, bread, milk, social media, house work even (lol). But none of those would have been the challenge I was wanting, that I needed.

Giving up alcohol isn’t enough of a challenge for me, don’t get me wrong, ive done it before, I’ve even taken part in Dry January and although I missed having the odd drink, it didn’t really rattle me. I’ve given up bread before too. This I’ll admit was hard, but purely from a convenience perspective. I did loose nearly a stone in weight though, it would appear that bread is rather fattening, even the brown variety! It quickly found its way back to me once my normal diet resumed!

no chocolate

I knew it would come down to chocolate at the end of the day. It always does. I LOVE CHOCOLATE!! I eat some every single day. Me and Hubby will easily consume sometimes 3-4 200g bars between us in the evenings while watching tv, or the odd box of Cadbury’s hero’s. Not to mention the rest that I eat during the day and pinching from the boys. The only chocolate worth eating though is Cadbury’s. In its purest form, ie dairy milk but, my new love is Cadbury’s Creations, the one with the popping candy and jelly bits in. It’s just divine. Oh and mini eggs, can’t forget those… (now im getting carried away just talking about it ha ha)

I have previously given up chocolate for lent and it almost killed me (metaphorically speaking of cause) and its killing me all over again. Today I am three-weeks into a six-week stint. I can smell it a mile off and whilst im offsetting the cravings with jelly sweets for the moment, they have nothing on chocolate!!

I can’t even put my feet up with a hot drink when I get back from the school run because I instantly want to reach for the whispa hot chocolate.

Baking is out too for the time being, I couldn’t possibly make something as yummy as this and not tuck in or lick a bowl.

So, whilst no im technically not going Cold Turkey, it certainly feels like I am to me. Chocolate is my vice.

I only hope that my cravings (which no doubt by Easter Sunday will have turned to sheer desperation) are satisfied with a Cadbury’s easter egg … ill have earned it if nothing else! ;-)

… and on that note, I have spied with my beady eye…

Cadbury’s Mini Egg Easter Egg

http://www.tesco.com/groceries/Product/Details/?id=254736345

Cadbury’s Creations Easter Egg

http://www.tesco.com/groceries/Product/Details/?id=282073717

Dairy Milk Easter Egg

http://www.tesco.com/groceries/Product/Details/?id=265923654

bruiser signing rocket

Makaton Monday ~ Rocket

Bruiser loves Space and Rockets, FACT!! But those of you that follow my blog already know that don’t you :)

When we first started using Makaton with Bruiser, we were advised by his speech and language therapist that we needed to first use the signs that got him his needs across first and foremost, ie food, drink, favorite toy etc. But, his obsession with space and rockets was so great that we knew we had to find a way of finding out what the signs were to help him communicate his obsession. (unfortunately these weren’t included in any of the literature we were given and our SALT didn’t know them either)

We searched high and low for the signs and eventually came across something on the Makaton website in their Makachat forum. Someone else had asked for the sign for Rocket! It wasnt the sign picture but an explanation on how to do the sign.

“The sign for “space rocket” is your non dominant hand, flat palm down about chest height, and your dominant hand, with your index finger-pointing upwards. The dominant hand is behind the flat hand and shoots upwards finger first like a rocket” 

This was all we needed to know. Once Bruiser started using the sign, it wasnt long before the sounds came too and in his own little way he could then say ‘dotit’. The sense of relief we all felt at this time was amazing. We could all breathe a sign of relief.

A while after discovering ‘Rocket’, purely by chance we recorded a Something Special episode (as we do EVERYDAY) and this particular episode was about Space. So thank you to Justin and Mr Tumble, Bruiser could then also sign ‘Space Man’ ‘Space’ ‘Moon’ ‘Space Suit’. These few little signs enabled him to then play with his brother imaginatively. Wriggler did the imaginative stuff, Bruiser played along and they ‘talked’ in sign whilst playing.

These days their play is more verbal but Bruiser still throws in the signs.

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ROCKET
ROCKET

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bruiser signing rocket
This is Bruiser signing ROCKET on bonfire night back in 2012. As you can imagine Rockets were his favorite firework :-)

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Only yesterday we watched a brand new episode of Something Special about the Planetarium. Another great episode that got Bruiser wanting to make a rocket just like Justin and….  we learnt a new sign to further feed his space obsession :-D

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Sign/Symbol used with the kind permission of the © The Makaton Charity 2012

For any help or advice in respect of Makaton, please contact the Makaton Charity directly.

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MAKATON MONDAY

 

Over under adventure

Makaton Monday ~ The Over Under ‘Adventure’

I might have mentioned previously that Bruiser is OBSESSED with the Octonauts. You may have seen my post about how I made his Octonauts birthday cake. For those not familiar with the Octonauts, it is a cartoon on cbeebies for toddlers loosely based on some sea creatures / animals that ‘search rescue and protect’ other sea creatures. Not only is it a lovely cartoon, it is also very educational. My boys have learnt a lot, myself included!

Over under adventure
This was Bruiser exploring his new ‘OctoMax Suit’ that he bought with his Christmas money. With all his Octonauts toys very neatly lined up by size type/character in the background :-) On this occasion we watched ‘The Gulper Eeel’ episode on repeat as its the episode that features the OctoMax Suit.

Bruiser has collected all the characters and all the gups (the sea vehicles). He watches the cartoon everyday about 20-30 times. He reads the books at bedtime. He knows each individual episode from the opening few seconds of each one and which characters are in that episode. When you read to him, he knows what the rest of each page reads from the first line alone. (he has a fantastic memory)

When he watches the cartoon he goes off and collects the gups and characters he needs and then copies the episode with his toys. When its finished he will go off somewhere and reenact what he has seen, action for action and sometimes word for word! When he watches a new episode he’s not seen before he watches it repeatedly until he knows it. This time period is quite hard going for us all as Bruiser remains zoned in and doesn’t and wont do anything else.

Living with Bruiser and this obsession means we have to be on the ball with it too. We need to know and watch each episode with the same passion. When Bruiser wants a certain episode we need to know which one it is from the characters or gup that he is playing with. This is no easy feat when we have over 50 episodes in the sky+ box. As you can imagine there are a lot of meltdowns. As well as we know them too, it is the communication barrier which lets us down in our understanding of Bruiser.

Last week, a whole new series of Octonauts started. One particular one was an extra long special called ‘The Over Under Adventure’ which was on, on friday evening. (we’ve watched this over 50 times since then already!!). This gave us an opportunity to show Bruiser a new sign to communicate the name of the episode. For ‘adventure’ we are using the sign for ‘trip/outing’. He already knows ‘over’ and ‘under’. He took to using it straight away and has used it several times today (sunday).

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DAY OUT / TRIP (ADVENTURE)
TRIP / OUTING (ADVENTURE)

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Bruiser signs this without a second hand in position. We are working on the sign and repeating it back to him correctly when he uses it. I know within the week he will have corrected the sign himself!

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Sign/Symbol used with the kind permission of the © The Makaton Charity 2012

For any help or advice in respect of Makaton, please contact the Makaton Charity directly.

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MAKATON MONDAY

With a Bit Of Wonder Woman Thrown in For Good Measure

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