Navigating The Stream: The Trails of Daily Routine

“You have a routine, so you don’t have to worry now.”

“That routine will work for everyone.”

“It works for another family. It will work for all my kids.”

“Why can’t you just change that schedule for today?”

“What do you mean a change in routine is hard?”

“I’m sure you don’t really have to follow the routine.”

Daily Routine is Like Navigating a Stream on a Boat - parenting with special needs kids -

Every parenting experience is different. Every child is different and so are their needs. I’m often looking at life and wondering how I managed to get through the daily issues that come up. Some days are easier and some days are harder. How we navigate the daily routine changes all the time. And as parents with special needs, we have to change with it.

It can be like navigating a small stream on a boat. It is every changing and every season is different. But building a routine to deal with the stream we have to navigate helps us along the way.

Daily Routine is Like a Stream

I like to think of our days as a small flowing stream for each of my girls. I have a boat on each stream that I have to learn to navigate.

First Run of the Stream
As a first time parent, you don’t understand that daily life needs routine and that you are making a journey every day down a stream.

Your first run you don’t see the obstacles that you need to avoid. You can see something happening like a rock in the stream but can’t do anything to avoid the problem.

You might not see the rapids that are coming, but you can hear them. We often see our problems coming but the first time we see them, we might not know how to deal with them.

We are often blind through the rapids of a major meltdown problems.

Second Run of the Stream
The second runs of the stream are very different. You might know what is coming, but you are starting making plans for the problems. You know where the rapids are in your routine. It allows you to make different choices on the second day.

You can see your problems areas and maybe you don’t avoid them. But you are emotionally a little better prepared for them. It is only the second time you have seen the problem.

These basic runs help your make your routines that will work for your family. It helps you see some of the problems.

I suggest taking notes during your runs of the stream to help build your routine.

Daily Routine is Like Navigating a Stream on a Boat - parenting with special needs kids -

When You Know the Routine of Your Stream

Your daily routine comes you know your stream really well. You can navigate around the rocks, some of the rapids and have a map made of your day.

Every day is always going to be slightly different with minor changes. But building the base of your daily routine is having a map of our stream and routine. You know the basics. It does not matter how you make your daily routine work at your house. You can have a picture schedule, a written one, or one that you just know you have to do.

You have your map to your stream or streams and can navigate them all. You keep your map handy with an emergency kit close by.

I keep a written routine in a binder that I use daily with other picture routines to help out. I have put some out but most I have not. I made the Weekly School Calendar. You can find different picture ones on time. I may at some time put my version out.

All Streams Change Over Time

Part of making a routine is being flexible for when changes happen. I was one in the Grand Canyon and a raft guide said that every storm can change the river. A minor rapid can become a major rapid with a large storm. Be ready for those changes. A lot of time you might not see those changes. If you have a change coming pull out your map and watch for where it changes.

You can also know that as your child ages the routine will change. Don’t expect that your routine will always be the same. The routine that works for a 4-year-old might not for the same 10-year-old. You might have a different stream size to navigate.

Keep things as basic as you can with changes. You might find things that help better keep your routine.

There might be seasonal changes to take in mind. We have problems with winter and I know that I have to add extra time in for winter changes.

I like to think that after a routine is set I can sometimes be an observer that is looking at the stream from a bridge. I can see the basic parts of the routine and see a few changes I can make for my map. I might also go and remove a few rocks to help the routine go better.

Daily Routine is Like Navigating a Stream on a Boat - parenting with special needs kids -

Don’t Let Others Change Your Routine

Often times we are not alone in your routines. I have several people that will tell me how to make our run the stream better. Or that we don’t always have to do our routine.

I have had many people tell me I can skip steps in our routine. I have said no. In fact, someone took a poll about who would let their child have ice cream for dinner and I was the only one to say no. It was a change to a routine that would have caused me nothing but problems in keeping our routine. Yes, I do change it but I make changes gradually over time. But I don’t do a change that would cause us problems or meltdowns.

Help others understand as best as you can that your routine is very important. Skipping part of the routine is not okay and that can cause problems. You are not just trying to make problems. We try to keep our routine no matter where we may do. That means that breakfast, lunch, and dinner are at set times. We don’t skip them and keep to the routine.

Do Your Best with Your Routine

Know that whatever routine you make is what is best for your family. Every routine that works for your family is important. What steps you take to make your routine work is good. Some routines go just during the day and some go all day. Every child might need a different routine. Life can be hard and know what is important to have in your routine.

One thing you don’t often hear about is the extra work that a special needs mom does to make the routine work or how little free time they get to take for themselves. And most times they don’t ask for help.

A routine that works for everyone is important. Keep your routine and be prepared for the small storms that will change it. Follow the stream with your map and know that you can navigate your stream with your map.

Parenting with Special Needs - 12 Month Blog Hop Series -

This is the second post with 12 other bloggers. You can read everyone’s posts about daily life below. There are so many different ways to look at daily life with special needs parents.

How to Homeschool your Child with Special Needs – Natural Beach Living
Day to Day Life Parenting a Child with Reactive Attachment Disorder – Every Star is Different
Life with Trauma ~ Living in the shadows‎ – STEAM Powered Family
Reality Bites: Autism and Daily Life – My Home Truths
Why Special Needs Moms are Exhausted All the Time, But Will Never Ask for Help – Life Over C’s
A Day in the Life of a Special Needs Mom – The Chaos and The Clutter
A Day in the Life: A Blogging Mom and Her Special Needs Kids – B-Inspired Mama
Failing My Son and the Routines He Can’t Explain by This Outnumbered Mama
Everyday Accommodations & Strategies for Kids with Hyperlexia – And Next Comes L
The Importance of Visual Schedules for Non-Verbal Autistic Children – Kori at Home

Here is a ook at all the themes for the 12 months:

Parenting with Special Needs - 12 Month Blog Hop Series -

Check out my posts in this series:

Cassie –

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Summer Olympic Easy Reader Book

The Summer Olympics are just around the corner! I wanted to add a few new things for the Olympics. I can’t believe it has been 4 years since I put out the Summer Olympics Pack!

I want to add a lot of fun things to that series. So be sure to check out each of them as they come out. To start the new set out, I have a fun easy reader book series to go with the Summer Olympics!

FREE Summer Olympic Easy Reader Book - 8 page easy to ready books for the Summer Olympics -

I wanted to make a simple and easy reader printable for the Summer Olympics. I picked a few of the sports from the image sets that I had and made this. It is always fun to revisit things after you have made them. I love that I had images that I could use and my girls just love the Olympics. Plus easy readers are nice to have for those beginner readers. My youngest just loves to have these types of books.

We plan on reading G is for Gold Medal: An Olympics Alphabet (Sports Alphabet) with this printable as well.

Each of the page in the book has a simple to read sentence with the sight words: I, can see.

FREE Summer Olympic Easy Reader Book - 8 page easy to ready books for the Summer Olympics -

Graphics purchased from Scrapping Doodles

Scrappin Doodles License.

What you will find in these printables:

  • makes an 8 page book
  • 4 pages of printables
  • Sight Words: I, can, see
  • Different Summer Olympics Themes

Check out these other Summer Olympics Activities and printables:

Cassie –

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Museum Of Science Trip Review

Museum Of Science in Boston is a great place to take kids to get a hands-on look at science in action. There are many different types of activities that kids do there. There is something that also appeals to people of different ages.

Museum Of Science Trip Review -

The Museum of Science is tons of fun for kids and adults. There are many different activities for kids to try. Plus a lot of hands-on learning activities for kids to try. You can always have fun while there for any age.

Name: Museum Of Science
Location: Boston, MA
Length of stay: 3 hours

My first thing to say is that I had as much fun as my girls did on this trip. We just did the main area and no of the extras that you have to pay for. There are several levels to the museum and shows that you can see.

The Museums has several permanent and temporary exhibits. I’m going to hit on some of the permanent ones that we really enjoyed!

The first one has to be the Colossal Fossil: Triceratops Cliff & Dinosaur discover area. We loved the dinosaur area. They had so much information plus the real fossil was neat to look at. We loved the huge T-rex and the footprint model. They have loads of learning activities for kids in the area.

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The second one we loved was the Lightning Show! It is loud with lots of flashing lights and if your child is scared of those things DON’T TAKE THEM TO THIS SHOW! We had some issues at the start but we got over it. They do warn you before the show as well. You can learn about lightning and see a great light show! Plus you get to hear music made by lightning! There are several live shows but this is the only one that we went to.

Museum Of Science Trip Review -

The third one we loved was Science in the Park! My girls have fun playing in that area. My only warning is watch out for older kids if you have younger kids. One of the older kids thought he would show my girls a fun time on the see-saw and one of them got hurt. I caught it at the end bu my youngest got hurt and we ended up in the first aid area. BTW their first aid area is great!

This area has TONS of gross motor activities for kids to do. Their favorite was trying to run to match the lights as they went down a runway. There are 4 different settings for kids to try.

Museum Of Science Trip Review -

The Natural Mysteries is really fun to look at the different animals that have lived and are living.You can explore shells, animals and more. There are loads of draws to pull out and look at stuff. We learned a lot of new things while exploring in the area.

Museum Of Science Trip Review -

We loved playing in the Light House. There were so many different ways that you got to play with light and learn about it. We just love the wall with the multiple color lights.

Museum Of Science Trip Review -

These are just a flew highlights from there. We totally loved it. Plus there is a bed of nails to lay on! It was a favorite for us.

Museum Of Science Trip Review -

We spent hours visiting here and loved it. We did buy lunch while we were there. For those gluten free there are not options beyond bags of chips. The rest of the food was okay and you could get a variety to things On busy days you will be waiting for popular foods.

Check out these other places to see in Massachusetts:

Cassie –

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