My Family

My Family

Monday, April 29, 2013

Interview with Cooper: Age 5 April 2013 What is your full name? Cooper McCoy How old are you? 5 What is your favorite food? Pizza and Mexican Favorite thing to do? Play with transformers When is your birthday? June 22 Where do you live? Gilroy, CA Where is your favorite place to go? Golfing What is your favorite thing to do in School? Eat lunch Who is your Best Friend? Sam and Billy What do you learn about at Church? God and Jesus. We learn about things that Jesus has. What is your favorite Sport? Tennis Tell me a story about your Brother and Sister: Long time ago I love my Sister and they are my Best Friends ever.I like to play with them, like play in the pool.

Friday, April 12, 2013

What Autism Looks Like...

I wrote this little article a few weeks back for a Contest being held by Parents magazine. It obviously didn't win, but I wrote it more for myself to get my feelings out. So, I thought I would share. What Autism Looks like in my family, from a Mommy's perspective. My son was diagnosed with Autism on November, 2012. The diagnosis not only changed the help we received, it also changed our parenting styles. I really was not well informed about Autism and how prevalent it is in so many homes. I treated my son just like my older son, had the same expectations and really wondered why he wasn't "listening" to me. NOW I know he wasn't ignoring me or choosing to disobey he was just struggling to interpret and process the things I was saying. As a baby Cohen was always sweet and laid back, but also quite loud. When he began to crawl he found ways to always find his way to the train table and would NOT leave. That was his thing and did not want anyone else to touch it. Play time as a toddler was always lining things up, playing legos, or playing trains. Everything he did was about Trains (Thomas) or solving problems. Again as time progressed we noticed more and more things were difficult. He would throw really bad tantrums when having to leave his favorite activities or random times we didn't know why. The tantrums would be fairly violent, throwing himself on the floor, kicking, stiffening his entire body. Finding a calming agent was usually a Thomas show if we were home. I began choosing not to do things as a family such as restaurants or parks, or parties just because I did not understand what was bringing on all of the tantrums. To skip ahead a bit at Cohen's 3 year old check up we went for his regular checkup and the Doctor recommended we have him tested for Autism. We did just that, and after much paperwork and meetings the Diagnosis of Autism was given to us. There were No tears. I was filled with such relief that there was an Answer to what was happening and that help was on the way. Wow! I can't tell you how many people have supported us and cheered us on through this process. I forgot to mention that Cohen's vocabulary at age 3 was absolutely non existent. He would always hum his words, and even get the right syllabols but not the word. We began to read a lot of information on Autism, and found that an I pad could be very useful for children with disabilities. Because Cohen could not use a crayon or would not use his hands to put pressure on things I was not sure how it would work. Almost immediately he took to it, was very stimulated by the Ipad and learned it and began using it by himself. After a week he was picking out the apps he wanted to use and flying through it. Words began to come, by repeating what he was hearing on these games. What??? Yes, he was so stimulated by this computer that he was responding to it. Occupational therapy and speech therapy came next. We began taking Cohen to 1 hour a week of each, which have been absolutely Amazing!! Now, a preschool 2 1/2 hours a day. Cohen is now repeating almost everything he hears and has several phrases to ask for things he wants or needs. So, to sum this all up I think Autism looks very different in every family. We have been so Blessed to have so much help and I feel like Autism is just a word to describe what we are treating our son for, but it's not who he is. Cohen is a funny, smart, endearing, loving 3 year old little boy that fills our lives with endless Joy! There are many many struggles through our days and weeks but our lives couldn't be more fulfilling. I couldn't imagine him any different. Autism has changed our lives for the better. It has opened my eyes and my heart to others with disabilities. Next time I see a child in a store breaking down I will not judge, I will help! I hope my families story and our daily struggles can maybe be an inspiration to others. Life is hard but it does get better, and what God brings to you and he will help you through!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Gizdich Ranch

We visited a new place this past weekend that we really enjoyed. It's a big Apple Farm where you can "pick your own" apples. Apples are not in season so we weren't able to do that this time, but it was fun to walk around and look at the trees. I walked around an antique shop and then we got fresh apple juice and a yummy pie! I love the endless amount of places to visit all around us!!


One of the most difficult things about living in California is being away from family. I love getting together with all of the extended family having meals, playing games, and eating some more! My kids don't like all of the typical holiday foods so I didn't bother making all of the fixings for just us. Kind of sad, I think I might just do it next year anyway, just for traditions sake. We thought it was going to rain on Easter so we did our main Easter egg hunt on Saturday. All 3 kids did great! I loved watching them all participate. Cooper of course had his basket loaded and the babies had a select few, so he had to re hide them for the little 2 to find. They loved it. Cohen stopped and opened his eggs every time he found one and ate the candy out, then left the egg where he found it. :) The Easter Bunny showed up Sunday morning with lots of goodies and the kids loved that. Cooper was shocked that the Easter bunny didn't bring much candy, mainly toys. Hmmm...that smart bunny! We went to the Easter service and I loved it when we were on the way home and Cooper told the Easter story to us, very nicely. He had many more details in there than I had explained to him. We did color eggs and make Easter cupcakes. Fun times and Great memories being made!

St. Patrick's Day Party

Cooper's K-5 Class loves to party and celebrate every occasion! I haven't done a great job of posting pictures of each one, (I know I should). They even celebrated Chinese New Year! I try to make it to all of the parties, I love to see them sing songs, and what hat they have made for each party! The kids all had a Treasure hunt for St. Patrick's day and searched for Gold. So, Cooper is really into "treasure" now. They had a green milkshake, some cool jello treats and cookies for their party!