Sunday, 15 June 2014

Phelan-McDermid Syndrome

If you are a common reader of the blog, you will have noticed some autism blogs appearing on my blog roll feed. If you have really been paying attention, you will have noticed some of them refer to Phelan-McDermid Syndrome. Our perceptive paediatrician ordered bloods for Nicholas to "rule out" any genetic abnormalities and hey presto, he had one (22q13.3).



As you would imagine, there is a flurry of emotions running through my family at the moment. From anger to relief in knowing what is going on inside Nicholas' head.

So far I have been in touch with Megan Toole who runs the Australian arm of the Phelan-McDermid Syndrome Foundation. As there are only 50 registered families in Australia, the research on this syndrome just isn't there.

From a teacher's point of view, I've been doing lots of research on PMS and ASD. As a family it means that the next few years will be more of an adventure than we thought! Nicholas will need more intervention than he is getting at the moment and he will probably be a high-needs child for quite a number of years.

I am fortunate that I do have a wonderful supportive family around me and some wonderful friends who recognise the need for hugs.

So not much craft for me at the moment, my creative juices will be put into working out strategies for helping my wee man.

Monday, 2 June 2014

Nicholas, Hanen and Study

I've been rather quiet on blogging front, but rather busy on the instagram front. I was remarking to a friend that life gets pretty complicated when you have kids. But when you have one with special needs, it is even more so.

We got through some pictures from childcare of our wee man playing and smiling. He has been smiling a lot more lately and his development has progressed in all the directions except speech!


He is loving his trucks and cars at the moment and will spend ages playing with the various vehicles at childcare and home.


That lovely gap in his front teeth was him pushing his dummy through them to the point where it created a gap! I love the fact that you can see his gorgeous hands in this picture and of course, he is smiling. It is so hard to get a good picture of him, I can only imagine what was happening behind the photographer. Childcare carers dancing about and trying to grab his attention.


He is loving books at the moment and can remain engaged with book for a good half an hour. Port side Pirates comes with a CD that he loves to listen to. Favourite songs are Justine Clarke Dancing Face (oh the irony of this) and the Wiggles Rock a -bye your bear.

But despite the fact that he is progressing in play, we still we have no real distinguishable speech. Next month we start a Hanen "More than words" program at Melvin Speech Pathology in Camberwell. This is a 4 month course which includes parent workshops and speech therapy assessments. We are hoping to develop some skills to try and help Nicholas along. It would be nice if there was a few words for Christmas (can you hear that Santa?).

He is still rather set in his ways with routine and eating is a nightmare. It has to be a secondary task in his eyes, not a primary one. So often there is Play School running in the background for him to focus on. He still requires his favourite coloured bowl and spoon and you have to be so careful when he is eating not to disturb him too much, or else there is a giant tantrum ...

He loves tunnels, when Mummy and Daddy act like a dog and crawl around the floor. We have started to feed the cats together each day and he carefully divides the food between them and then we are encouraging him to give them a little pat at the end. Unfortunately we do need to remove the water dish for this activity as Nicholas loves playing with water.

I have two more subjects to go for my Masters of Eduction (Teacher Librarianship). One practical and one theory. But fitting in the study and work experience visits in-between work and Nicholas' therapy sessions is a bit of a challenge

We are moving house in a few weeks and I am hoping to get a bit of sewing action before I move. I have so many quilting ideas, but alas, no time :(

Sunday, 20 April 2014

Destashing my fabric *cough* collection

We have been busy here at Konstant Kaos sorting out some fabric to destash. Most of them are cut into Fat Quarters, but if you are interested in yardage, then please email me!


Most of these prints have been used in my business in one form or another. At the moment, I just don't have the time to do large scale sewing required to keep up with the market pace.

So it is time to destash. Keep an eye on my Etsy Shop, as I am adding things every day!

Keep Sewing!

Margaret

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

More Car Badges, Posters and Memoribilia

Just think of my excitement when I came across the Logo Design Love post on Car Manufacturer Logo Designs:


They have done a feature blog post on Car Manufacturer Logo Designs. Right up my alley!

A bit more searching and I came across Car Type which has a section on car badges and hood ornaments and their evolution.


There is a great section on car posters and advertising, however their collection leans more towards the modern day cars rather than the vintage or classic cars that I am interested in. A quick search on Flickr might give you more rewards in this area.

Designer Daily had a great article on the evolution of the car badges, so interesting to see what happened to them during the war years.

Now all I need to do is work out how to integrate this into my love or patchwork and quilting ...





Friday, 28 February 2014

A collection of #vintagecar badge photographs

I love to photograph old cars. To imagine their stories, where they have come from, where have they driven. And I love to capture their badges, which seem to be much more complex than the modern car badges (and attached via screw and bolt).

Here are a few pics that I have taken over the last year or so.



















I love how the culture of the time shines through on the badges. The ones that were created in the 20s and 30s, and then the 50s and 60s.

If you are interested in keeping track of my car pictures, head on over to either my facebook page or instagram.

Sunday, 23 February 2014

My wee man turned 3 this week

Can't believe how fast three years passes you by when you have kids.


I can't believe how slowly 3 months goes by when you have a son on the spectrum.


He is non-verbal, but finds his voice (noise) when he doesn't like what he is doing or how you are doing it. Routines are king, and colours play an important part in his life.


He generally only has two speeds, running and sleeping. 
So keeping him still for all sorts of things is a challenge.


New textures are a challenge for him, but he seemed to cope well yesterday with mucky hands when we went to the farm


And he didn't freak out when the "Robert the Goat" wanted some food.

He was so exhausted and hungry after two hours of running around the farm that he sat and ate lunch, and for a moment I forgot that he was diagnosed last year as being on the spectrum.

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Skeletal Fabric and a Spoonflower Giveaway

I finally got around to ordering some fabric through Spoonflower, excited to see how my design ideas translate into realistic pattern design.

My Spoonflower account has told me that it has been printed and shipped, so it is only a matter of days now!! Squee!! I have ordered samples in some of the colours that I have used in my society6 designs.






It should be interesting to compare the colour saturation between the Spoonflower products and the Society6 products.

Of course part of the whole Spoonflower experience is checking out their blog and it seems that they have a give away. A Skirt-a-day book is up for grabs. So head on down and enter!

You have to be in it to win it!

Saturday, 11 January 2014

Morse Code Tree

I came across this poster while looking for code posters for my classroom.

via Zazzle


As some of you might know, I teach Information Technology, mostly to upper school students Years 10-12. I like the idea of this decision making tree as it makes kids think about how to categorise information.

I like this one as well, focusing on process.



Friday, 10 January 2014

Society6 Artist Promotion Free Postage*

Society 6 have free postage* if you order from Konstant Kaos. Offer expires January 12th, 2014 at Midnight Pacific Time. 

So here are some ideas for you ...

Totes to carry your precious things in ... from $18.00US


Stationary cards 10 for $20 US



Most of my designs are available in Art Prints, Pillows, Totes, Stationary Cards, Mugs, Mobile Phone covers .. knock yourself out!

*Offer excludes Framed Art Prints, Stretched Canvases and Throw Pillows with insert.

Wednesday, 25 December 2013

Vlad wishes you a Very Merry Christmas

A tsunami of organisation and emotion comes crashing down on Christmas Day. We were hoping that 2013 would be the last year renting, but given the challenges with council, it looks like we will be here for a bit longer.



It has been a tumultuous year for us. 

The most major thing being that Nicholas was diagnosed as being on the Autism Spectrum (ASD). He is turning 3 in February, and he is basically developmentally behind. No words. Great understanding and inquisitiveness, but lack of communication means plenty of tantrums. Activities need to be carefully planned and moved into rather than shifted into. We are getting there slowly, but the next three years before he goes to school will be hard work.

Tori has finished her first year at school and I am dumbfounded at the growth that she has displayed this year. Her inquisitiveness and ability to just absorb what is around her is phenomenal. In the last few months she has shot up in height, reaching my shoulders. Lucky her she will undoubtably be taller than me!

I have one year left on my study journey to get my M. Ed (Teacher Librarianship). It has been a hard slog, especially with the baggage associated with Nicholas' diagnosis, but I am still plugging away. 

Craft and my small business has taken a beating this year. Despite attempting some markets, the time and effort required has been in short supply. At the moment, it is important that I just focus on Nicholas. Here and there I pick up some custom handbag or baby wear jobs, but the dream of a sustainable small business is far from my mind at the moment.

Mishka has been a welcomed addition to our family this year. Despite her health worries early on, she has integrated well into our house and is certainly a personality to be reckoned with!

If you are reading this, I wish you all the best for the festive season. Take some time to relax, rejuvenate and recharge for the year ahead.