This time last week I was bidding the minis adieu and setting off for adventure!A mini-less mini-break to the Big Smoke for a private screening of a new Netflix flick-The Siege of Jadotville with one of my girlfriends.
Today I’m going to talk about something that supposedly helps parents of kids with special needs such as Down Syndrome and Autism. Therapists just love it. For them, it is the secret weapon, the jewel in the parenting special needs arsenal. It’s a simple item-the First and Then page.
I’ve just devoured the Get Down-a Netflix original drama that has its roots in real life events in New York in the late seventies as the disco flame is extinguished and the hip hop spark ignites and comes to life. It features a fantastic young cast and some amazing tunes plus we get to see how masters of scratching such as the actual Grandmaster Flash honed their art. The series is from the fantastic brain of Baz Luhrmann-he who gave us the modern version of Romeo and Juliet back in the 90s and the psychedelic Moulin Royge in the 00s.
This was the response we heard most often when we informed inquisitive friends and family members as to our holiday plans consisted of for the summer. “Fucking nuts” was also a common one along with “No, seriously?” and “Good luck!”
Add to that a stringent budget and it may not have been everyone’s choice. Now Paris is not the most small child friendly of cities,I’ll grant them that. Baby changing facilities are practically non-existent, epecially near the Eiffel Tour and surrounding areas, which we found out to our detriment with a double
merde code brown alert one afternoon (it is a very difficult endeavour to change a nappy full of shite in a tiny toilet cubicle, which no doubt gives ample space to the skinny French derrieres but was a nightmare to fit both mother and struggling five year old!
Parents across the country are grappling with all kinds of emotions today as they drop their little ones in to “big school” for the first time. There have been posts flooding my timeline all week with tips on how to aid your little one with the adjustment of entering the Irish education system. Oversized sunglasses were advised for the mammies to hide their tears that their “baby” was now of school going age. This week, I was just another mammy feeling all the emotions, but the over-riding one for me was one of relief.
This is something I’ve resisted writing about for some time and will likely open a can of worms, but somethings just need to be highlighted. Years ago, people born with Down syndrome were sent to live out their days in institutions. Society turned their back on these individuals and gave them no chance. Now, society is looking to this section of the population rather than looking away. People with Down Syndrome are living longer and more independently than at any other stage in human history. Yet, as our tolerance and acceptance evolves to become greater and more inclusive, so too does our science. And the science end of things, it seems, has a lot less to offer.
Have you ever really, really wanted to do something but when you finally got the chance you realised fuck no, this is just not for me? I always wanted to be a doctor. The literary not the medical kind. A few of my friends are doctors (again not the medical kind) and I have often found myself fantasising about meeting up over coffee with them, or dinner, or wherever, the location isn’t important-what is important is how we would greet each other:
“Good morning, Doctor Kelly.”
“Good morning, lovely to see you, Doctor Collins.”
“You, too. Doctor Murphy, water?”
(on so on and so on). Also how cool would it be to have letters coming to the house addressed to you as Dr?
Well, that dream is dead. Having just completed my dissertation and thus my Masters, I can safely say that this is as far as my academic journey will go. Bring me the hat to go with the gown,I will happily cap my education right now!
2016, well it’s been a bit shit hasn’t it?War, refugee crises, national treasures popping their clogs left, right and centre. What we need is a crack commando unit of goddamn heroes to turn this ship around and get some good vibes flowing.
Like these guys….
Continue reading “The N-Team to save 2016”
Can you remember much about being 2? One of my earliest memories was climbing up on to the chair in front of my mother’s dressing table with a pair of scissors and cutting a fringe for myself. The result predictably was less than successful. I was two and a half and that’s just about all I remember about being that age. We often hear about the terrible twos, and believe me Mini-Mini has her moments but I look at my youngest daughter now and I marvel at all she can do at this tender age and the pretty awesome human being she’s already become.
Continue reading “When Two is Terrific, not Terrible”
Regular readers of the blog will know that I recently undertook a challenge to visit 40 countries before I turn 40. I’ve got just under five years and fourteen countries left to see!This was Country No.26-Portugal and a trip I took back in January (!) with me Mammy and brother to celebrate a milestone birthday for Mammy-I can’t tell you which milestone figure she has now reached, but I can confirm there was a zero in it.
The Vital Statistics
Set between the sea and the mountains, Lisbon is small enough that you can walk to all of its sights, but be warned hills and cobblestoned avenues abound. Lovely to look at it, but not great for the heels if you are out for the night! Take comfortable shoes and prepare for a work out, but don’t worry there are a myriad refreshment stops along the way offering tasty drinks and snacks. Another thing to bear in mind is that while there is the lovely old historic centre, which is a joy to visit, there is also a more modern part of the city, that is frankly less appealing. Portugal, like Ireland, has seen its economy suffer hugely in the last few years to such an extent that they may be the only western country which is actively recruiting refugees in order to aid its dwindling rural population.