Bubble Magic

Bubbles are a big deal at our house. James’ speech therapist showed us early on in his life just how much they could do.

 

He would do anything for these glorious rainbow soap spheres.

 

We’ve used them to help him say the “b” sound (reinforced by bubble blowing), sign and say “bubble,” sign/say “more,” eventually “more bubbles.” Then he learned to tell us if he wanted them to go “up high” or “down low.” Practicing the lip control and airflow control to blow them himself. Standing, taking a couple of steps, walking across a room, you name it.

 

Shortly after Georgia could walk, she knew how to make her brother happy by going to the cabinet and getting the bubbles.

 

The one thing we could never get him to do is pop them mid-air. While other kids frantically chased after them, popping in stride, he would watch them with the most euphoric look on his face, every muscle in his body tightened with intense focus. The only way he would pop them is if they landed on the floor or ground, when he felt their journeys were complete.

 

The other day, I tried to see bubbles like he sees them. I tried to look at them with his astute eye and intense focus. Letting the rest of the world fall away.

 

I saw the reflections of the windows drawing in sunlight, interspersed with effervescent rainbows.

 

I saw the images of myself, James, and Georgia, amusingly distorted in the lighthearted way only a bubble could create.

 

I saw bubbles that merged together, joining forces as they traveled whimsically toward their next adventure.

 

I watched them in their unpredictable paths, changing with someone’s breath or laughter or quick wave of the arm.

 

I know James sees much more than that.

 

Why would anyone want to pop them?

 

It’s James’ way- seeing and feeling things on a different wavelength.

 

It’s why when we pray, he doesn’t want to stop.

 

It’s why getting out his icons is the first thing he does each morning.

 

It’s why he reads my emotions like a book, oftentimes before I do.

 

It’s why when we think he’s paying least attention, he shows us that he hasn’t missed a beat.

 

It’s a gift.

 

And sometimes, on hard days, when there’s a royal meltdown when the bubble container closes, I wonder if it is a gift. I know many, including myself sometimes, would call his interaction with bubbles a stim.

 

And I wonder if as his gut heals and he gains more conventionally accepted knowledge and skills, he starts to treat bubbles the way others would- a game, rather than a mystery.

 

I will embrace whatever comes, as it does. But I am grateful for the chance to view the simple things in mystical ways.

 

james bubbles

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chewy Banana Chips

These yummy morsels don’t last long around here. Light, sweet, and just a bit salty. And ingredients you probably have in your home right now.

I started making banana chips when James was unable to tolerate his favorite crunchy snacks and was mouthing everything. The mouthing might be a combination of imbalance in his digestive tract and sensory need for more input. We are learning how these two things often go hand-in-hand.

For the time being, I was looking for a healthy snack with the short list of simple foods he was able to tolerate. One of those trusty foods was bananas.

Most of the banana chip recipes floating around used lemon juice, and the citric acid was a no-go for him. So I attempted to make them with olive oil, and they completely disappeared in a couple of hours. Totally hit the spot. My kids now call them cookies..why not? 😉

Banana chips

The initial goal was to have a crunchy snack, but my family much prefers the chewy. And the chewy sensory input was just as helpful for James.

So here are banana chips with none of the additives you might find in store-bought options!

Ingredients:

3 bananas (not overripe)

2 tbsp olive oil

Sea salt to taste

Directions:

Preheat oven to 200F

Lightly coat olive oil on a nonstick cookie sheet

Slice the bananas into about 1/4 inch slices

Lightly brush olive oil on both sides of the banana slices and place on cookie sheet

Sprinkle with sea salt

Bake for 3 hours, flipping slices after 90 minutes.

Enjoy!

 

 

Two-Ingredient Pancakes

Well…no one is winning a food photography contest around here, but we love these 2-ingredient pancakes that have been floating around cyberspace. My picky eater finally eats eggs!

 

Pancake breakfast filter

Ingredients: 1 mashed banana, 2 pastured eggs. The end.

We threw some mashed up blueberries in for this round! And if you’re really feeling crazy, add a dash of cinnamon.

After whipping them together, cook in ghee, butter, or the oil of your choice. Serve with raw honey or organic maple syrup.

An Update: 3 Months In

The past three weeks have been glorious for little man. A couple of days after my last post (Today, I feel frustrated.), James was back to his happy, fun-loving self. His functional medicine doctor asked us to increase his dose of EnteraGam, which is a medical food treatment that binds to toxic substances in the gut to prevent them from penetrating through the intestinal lining. When we started to increase his dose, he wasn’t feeling so hot, hence, my last post. But his body has now adjusted to it, and it seems to be doing its job.

We haven’t given him any broth the past few weeks since the suspect histamine issue came to light (broth is very high in histamine). He’s been eating lots of shredded chicken and steak, as long as it’s cooked in ghee. And my amazing sister brought to my attention two-ingredient pancakes, which consist of bananas and eggs. They are YUMMY. The kid is nuts over them, and he’s now regularly eating eggs. He still hasn’t touched any cooked vegetables recently, but we’ve been able to sneak some cauliflower, spaghetti squash, zucchini, and butternut squash into his smoothies regularly. Thank God for smoothies.

And the more fun behavior/overall temperament/language update. He has been so much more affectionate and personable. I’ll hear him say, “Where’s Mommy?” while he’s in another room and then walk up to me and want to sit on my lap. We hear lots of “big hug” requests all day long. Though he would readily receive affection, it used to be a rare occasion when he would initiate it. He’s also started saying, “silly goose,” when something is funny, which is just the cutest thing I ever did hear. “I want ____” statements are happening much more readily now, and the other day, he got up from breakfast and clearly said, “I want to go play.” Hooray for five word sentences!

We are still working on more reciprocal conversation. He loves to say good morning and ask how everyone is doing but has a hard time answering the question himself. A lot of his language has a bit of a rote feel to it, which makes me smile. For example, when he’s upset, you might hear him say, “It’s okay, buddy,” something he has heard quite a bit. 🙂 My personal favorite is when he’s given something, and he shows his gratitude by saying, “thank you, welcome.” Just wants to make sure both giver and receiver are covered.

We also had a great Halloween and hope you did, too! James still gets a little confused as to why we ring someone’s doorbell and then leave right away. He tried to walk into every house to visit, so we only made it to a few 😉 Our incredibly kind neighbors made him feel special by making sure there were non-food treats set aside for him.

Pictures for cuteness.

 

Thank you for following his journey!