Merry Christmas 2020!

Greetings Earthlings! πŸ™‚

Just the quickest of posts before the year is out to wish all of my loyal readers every blessing for the holiday season! 😊

Here’s hoping that 2021 will be a much happier and brighter year for us all! πŸ₯°

Stay safe!

Aoife

Autism and Christmas

Greetings Earthlings! πŸ™‚

As we face into the holiday season, this week I’d like to talk about Christmas and autism.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, yet as with most aspects of life on the spectrum, it can sometimes be overwhelming for autists. Flashing lights, busy and noisy crowds, interrupted routines and unexpected visitors can really throw an autist, even amidst the high jinks and excitement for Santa.

Here are some tips for an autism friendly Christmas:

Go shopping at off peak times– I know this can be hard to avoid over Christmas with shopping crowds (although perhaps this year human traffic will be lighter), but try to get out for Christmas shopping midweek or early in the morning to avoid getting overwhelmed by the crowds.

Wear sunglasses if Christmas lights are too bright– Ah the old reliable. I know I advise this as a solution to most light related sensory issues, but I do swear by my sunglasses! I rarely leave my house without them- I’ve even been known to wear them in clubs! Thankfully Christmas lights have never been an issue for me, but if you don’t want to miss out on any light displays, or official turning on of the lights ceremonies, just slip a pair on to take the edge off πŸ™‚

Use a stocking/sack instead of gift wrapping presents– This can help reduce sensory overload from all the bright colours, noisy paper and textural sensitivities. I always had a Santa sack growing up and it was great fun to dig around in it and focus on one present at a time as I pulled them out πŸ™‚

Autism friendly Santa Experiences- If your child tends to get overwhelmed with the crowds at Santa’s grotto, many places offer autism friendly experiences where the lights are turned down, there’s less noise, and the numbers are limited for a more calming experience. Granted, these may be harder to come across than normal this year, but something to look forward to in the future πŸ™‚ There are also a lot of autism friendly pantomimes and shows to watch out for.

Decorate the house gradually rather than all at once– The sudden change in decor might be overwhelming for an autist, so putting up the decorations bit by bit will allow them to get used to the change gradually. Equally, the decorations could also be removed slowly to avoid similar incidences.

Use a static light setting on the Christmas tree/outdoor lights- If flashing lights are a problem, try buying a static set or set the flash pattern to static. If colour sensitivities are a problem, try to stick with plain white bulbs, or if yellow is a trigger colour (as is the case with many male autists), calming blue might be a nice alternative.

Pre-arrange Christmas visits if possible– To reduce the stress of unexpected visitors, try to plan out times/days when your family or friends might visit. This way there is time to get used to the idea and your child will not be thrown by a sudden arrival/routine disruption.

Maintain routines where possible– To avoid added stress, try to stick to regular bedtimes, bath times and mealtimes.

Be cautious of holiday scents- Be careful if trying out Christmas scented candles, air fresheners or when buying a real Christmas tree in case these scents are a sensory trigger. A couple of Christmas’s ago, one seasonal Yankee candle made me throw up when I smelled it, so beware (it could also have been a side effect from the strong antibiotics I was on at the time, but I’ve avoided it ever since to be sureπŸ˜‚)!

Ho-ho-ho-pe you enjoyed this post dear Earthlings! πŸ™‚

Have a lovely weekend,

Aoife

Seasons Greetings!

Greetings Earthlings! πŸ˜€

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As 2019 draws to a close (and so two does my third year of this blog! 😲), I’d just like to take this opportunity to wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas and every blessing for 2020 πŸ₯³

Thank you all so much for your continued readership, support and kind messages this year, and I look forward to writing for you all again in the new year πŸ™‚

Enjoy the holiday season dear Earthlings! πŸ˜€

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Aoife

Merry Christmas!

Greetings Earthlings! πŸ˜€

I’d just like to take this opportunity to wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas and to wish you every happiness for 2019 to come! πŸ™‚

As we come to the end of another year I’d just like to thank you all for your continued support and readership. I really appreciate your kind comments and that you’ve stuck with me for this long πŸ™‚

Who’d have thought 2 years ago that you’d all still be here listening to my ramblings! πŸ˜‚

I’ll be taking a break for a couple of weeks over Christmas, but I’ll be back again in the new year!

Wishing you all the very best for the festive season! πŸ™‚

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Aoife

One Year Anniversary! :)

Greetings Earthlings! πŸ˜€

HAPPY NEW YEAR!! πŸ˜€

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Hope that everyone enjoyed the Christmas break! Nothing like a few days of eating, sleeping and watching TV! 😎 Wow! I can’t believe it’s 2018 already- feels like only yesterday I was wringing in 2017! I’m getting old!

January 2018 marks not just a new year, but alsoΒ marks one whole year of blogging.

A is for Aoife not Autism‘ is officially one year old!

Wuuuuutttttt!!! 😲

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It’s insane to think that in one short year over 500 people have signed up to know what I have to say about autism every week! Who’d have thought that one year on that there would be anyone still interested in listening to my ramblings?! πŸ˜› πŸ˜‰ Haha! πŸ™‚

But seriously, I would sincerely like to thank each and every one of you for your readership, support and kind words this past year. To know that you’re enjoying my posts means the world to me, and I am very grateful πŸ™‚

Don’t worry- I’ll leave the mushy stuff at home and get back to normal posting next week, I promise πŸ˜› πŸ˜‰

But again, thank you all so much! πŸ˜€

Bring on 2018! πŸ™‚

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Aoife

Seasons Greetings!

Greetings Earthlings! πŸ™‚

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Wow- I can’t believe Christmas is almost here! πŸ˜€

This time last year I was carefully designing this blog ahead of my January launch, and here we are now- over 70 blog posts later! 😲

How time flies! πŸ™‚

This is just a quick post to take the time to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and to thank you all for reading in 2017 πŸ˜€ It’s nice to know that someone out there is enjoying my ramblings πŸ˜› πŸ˜‰

I’ll be taking a break from writing for a couple of weeks to enjoy the festive season, but rest assured I will return in January (you can’t get rid of me that easily πŸ˜‰ )

Wishing you and yours all the best for the festive season :*

See you all in 2018! πŸ˜€

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Aoife

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