Category Archives: Seasonal

Slimer Biscuits from Ghostbusters

Slimer Biscuits from Ghostbusters

Halloween can be an awful time for those with Sensory Processing Disorder – a change of routine and additional stimulation. But it doesn’t have to be such a negative experience as long as you are prepared and have some ideas up your sleeve. Remember the most important thing is to ensure that each individual has the right Sensory Diet for their needs – making sure they get just the right amounts of input for each of the senses – whether that be trying to reduce or stimulate it.LEGOLAND Windsor, Brick or Treat, Halloween, Fireworks and the Hotel

Halloween and Sensory Processing Disorder

I have previously talked about a Scooby Doo Halloween Party the Sensory Seeker attended, how Halloween can help Sensory Processing Disorder and how an overnight trip to LEGOLAND Windsor on October 31st was great for The Sensory Seeker. This year, however, we are keeping it more low key and staying at home.

The Sensory Seeker  is absolutely loving Ghostbusters currently and he has the new, Year 2 Wave 6 LEGO Dimensions Ghostbusters Story Pack – or the Girl Ghostbusters as he calls it. He is so good at it and best of all this little boy, who I feared may never be able to talk when he was at preschool, was explaining all about the game and the new packs he has at the Family Playstation event we attended last weekend. Not only have games helped him with his communication but in so many other ways including being more socialable. I like to take his interest off the computer as well, and have previously looked at Ghost Crafts. This time I wanted to really have him focused and this is where the idea for Slimer Biscuits came from – just perfect for Halloween.Slimer Biscuits from Ghostbusters

How to make Slimer Biscuits

I have talked about the Benefits of making Biscuits with Sensory Processing Disorder when we made them as Christmas Gifts . We again used the same all in one method – and The Sensory Seeker felt really confident in himself that he made them “all by himself.” Of course he absolutely loved getting his hands in the bowl with all the lovely textures mixing the ingredients in. He still hasn’t managed to be tempted by licking the butter though!
Slimer Biscuits from GhostbustersIngredients for the biscuits: 250g Softenend butter, 140g castor sugar, 1 egg yolk, 300g plain flour (plus extra if it is to sticky and for the surface/rolling pin) and vanilla essence.

Method for biscuits: Mix together ingredients, roll out the mixture, cut into shapes, cook in the oven until golden.

The idea for the Slimer biscuits came from Simpsons Doughnuts. You know the ones which are literally pink with hundreds and thousands on. We had originally wanted to buy plain doughnuts but could not find any. To make Slimer biscuits we simply to the same but needed to make it green.Slimer Biscuits from GhostbustersWe bought some lemon icing and simply mixed in blue food colouring. Then we spent ages sorting out green hundreds and thousands! Once the biscuits had cooled we spread the icing on the top and added the green sprinkles. The Sensory Seeker then decided he wanted a couple of different coloured stands for the eyes and nose. The boys actually ended up doing some with multi-coloured sprinkles too.Slimer Biscuits from GhostbustersGuess what the biscuits didn’t much look like Slimer, and they weren’t difficult to make – but to my little boy they were the BEST biscuits in the World. AND HE had made them!Slimer Biscuits from GhostbustersOther Posts of Interest this Halloween:

Egg Carton Christmas Trees

Egg Carton Christmas Trees

Egg Carton Christmas Trees are good because they are so simple to make, utilise fine motor skills, are inexpensive (using recycled materials) and make great ornaments – which am sure will then enhance your child’s self-esteem.
Egg Carton Christmas TreesYou will need:

  • 1 egg carton (not the plastic sort)
  • paint
  • paint brush
  • paint pot
  • water
  • things to stick on
  • glue
  • glue spatial
  • glue pot
  • needle and cotton
  • scissors

Method

  1. Cut out the egg cartons into individual cups.
  2. Simply paint the egg cups green and allow to dry.
  3. Thread the painted cups together tying a note in the underside of the cups and leaving enough string to hang them.
  4. Decorate with stickers, paper – or whatever you fancy for your tree.
  5. Hang it up.

Egg Carton Christmas Trees

Christmas and The Sensory Seeker

Christmas is a great time for the Sensory Seeker as there’s just so much stimulation for him. I think as he is getting older it is much easier for him to handle. For instance he has more of a concept of time. He has learnt the days of the week and that certain things happen on certain days (for example after school clubs, roast on Wednesdays at school etc), plus he is now learning to tell the time in his maths lessons. He understands now that there is a build up to Christmas and then a long wait before the next one (he used to wake up every day thinking it would be Christmas again). 6 and half is such a magical age anyway that I am sure this one will be truly magical.

Egg Carton Christmas Trees

Other Christmas Related Posts

Reindeer Food and Other Christmas Sensory Ideas

Visiting Friends and Family at Christmas when your child has Sensory Issues

The Sensory Seeker makes Christmas Tree Biscuits

Reindeer Christmas Crafts

Christmas Cards and The Sensory Seeker

Christmas Crafts for The Sensory Seeker

Making Christmas easier for The Sensory Seeker

The Sensory Seeker makes Hot Chocolate Santas Teacher Gifts

When every day is a bad day

 

 

 

LEGOLAND Windsor, Brick or Treat, Halloween, Fireworks and the Hotel

LEGOLAND Windsor, Brick or Treat, Halloween, Fireworks and the Hotel

LEGOLAND Windsor has always been for me a place that really caters for those with special needs. We visited for this year’s Brick or Treat on Halloween and LEGO NINJAGO fireworks – deciding to stay in the LEGOLAND Hotel rather than going home.

LEGOLAND Windsor, Brick or Treat, Halloween, Fireworks and the Hotel

LEGOLAND Windsor and Additional Needs

The first time we ever visited was because an Autism forum were having a meet up and all agreed it was the best place to meet the needs of their kids. Well this must have been about 9ish years ago now and it has never let us down yet. They offer a ride access pass so that those who cannot queue can still access the rides. This is for 10 rides but we have never done 10 yet (in fact the last day we managed 3 rides!). Also I believe this is down to the understanding nature of the staff. For more information please see my previous post: Disability Access Guide to UK theme Parks.

LEGOLAND Windsor Hotel in General

With the introduction of the LEGOLAND Hotel I think that LEGOLAND Windsor is even more accommodating for those with additional needs: Even those who are not guests can visit the floor with Bricks restaurant on – which also has additional Xboxes and an indoor play area. This gives a place to escape from the crowds a little. I noticed that the general toilets had paper towels rather than hand driers, and the toilets in the rooms had toddler seats built into the seat too.

For guests of the LEGOLAND Windsor Hotel there is (obviously) the benefit of having a room. This is super themed in LEGO, with clues to solve to open the safe (to reveal a LEGO gift) as well as a box of LEGO to play with (great for fine motor development).  The rooms have LEGO TV for the children in their room (and another tv for the adults). The beds had light switches by them – but you can also take the key card out to stop the lights from working (our Sensory Seeker just kept flicking it on and off!!!)

LEGOLAND Windsor, Brick or Treat, Halloween, Fireworks and the HotelThere was entertainment provided in the morning and night time on the floor which is level with the LEGOLAND Resort. There’s a LEGO themed swimming pool inside the hotel (which also helps calm the Sensory Seeker). The towels are provided and it is communal changing rooms of a good size (5 of us fitted in with plenty of room); with refundable lockers at £1

Breakfast is included in the price of the stay and is an all you can eat buffet. There’s a section which is lower down so that children can help themselves. There’s a good range of foods available – meeting the needs of even the fussiest* of children. Hotel guests are able to enter the LEGOLAND Resort** earlier than normal the next day – beneficial to those who are unable to cope with crowds.

See also my previous post when we stayed at The LEGOLAND Hotel for Junior Brick Builders Week

How the LEGOLAND Hotel was beneficial for the Sensory Seeker on Fireworks night

Although LEGOLAND continue to elevate the problem of large crowds dispersing from the park after the fireworks, this can still be overwhelming for those with additional needs. We felt that staying overnight would make the situation easier for us. On staying I also discovered some other benefits.

LEGOLAND Windsor, Brick or Treat, Halloween, Fireworks and the Hotel

First of all the hotel gave us a place to recover. If the Sensory Seeker had over done it (or become over stimulated) we could take him back to the room away from the crowds. That is not to say that the room wasn’t further stimulating but he could watch LEGO TV to help him calm down. If your child needed to sleep during the day this is also provided it as an option. As we went for Halloween it allowed our Sensory Seeker to dress up and have face paint on in the evening – which he would have found too much to have on all day. It meant that we did not need to carry around additional things (such as spare clothes in case he had an accident) as the hotel is located within the park. It also allowed us to take additional things like light up bands for the fireworks – but equally ear defenders or sweets could be left there. You may be interested in my previous post on Sensory Processing Disorder and the Auditory Sense to see whether fireworks may be a problem or not. When it came to the Firework display there was a hotel guests viewing area in the Driving school – meaning that the Sensory Seeker had somewhere to run around and not be crowded in.

LEGOLAND Windsor, Brick or Treat, Halloween, Fireworks and the Hotel

Conclusion of The Sensory Seeker at The LEGOLAND Windsor Hotel for Fireworks night

The Sensory Seeker had an amazing time and has not stopped talking about it. He is very familiar with LEGOLAND Windsor which I think helps. He actually collected his brick for going 5 times this season. He was super thrilled that he is 1.2m tall and can go on all the rides. There were a few teething problems (such as being turned away from the disabled queue because a ride was closing for the fireworks and the sheer amount of people trying to move after the fireworks) but all in all I think that LEGOLAND Windsor strive to improve the situation. The main problem I can see is if the fireworks are too much then you are unable to go back to the hotel. We were able to do the “after dark” challenges and collect limited edition pop badges before going to dinner at Bricks. It took the boys ages to get to sleep as they were just so excited! I would definitely recommend this and do it again – it certainly was a nice change from Trick or Treating. We were also pleased to see that Brick or Treat was on until November 2nd so the boys were still able to participate in the Halloween activities that LEGOLAND had put on for the Half Term.

LEGOLAND Windsor, Brick or Treat, Halloween, Fireworks and the Hotel

You may also be interested in my post about visiting Disneyland Paris with Sensory Processing Disorder (where there was also fireworks).

Other bloggers who have additional needs in the family who stayed at the hotel at the same time as me are Purple Ella and Our Little Escapades who may offer a different view point to mine.

*disclaimer hopefully! ** Note that only a few rides are open at this time though.

This is not a sponsored post. I paid for my own Merlin Annual Pass and room at LEGOLAND Windsor Resort. All words and opinions are my own.

Sensory Halloween

Halloween can be utilised  to help your child with sensory processing disorder deal with some of their difficulties. Halloween games and activities can help the child learn to deal with unpleasant situations, connect with their bodies, and fulfill some of their required Sensory Diet. Of course there is going to be benefits for both the Sensory Seeker and the Sensory Avoider – but I mainly focusing on the Sensory Seeker – as that is what I know most about, as my son is more a Seeker.

Halloween Dressing up and Sensory Processing Disorder

sensory halloweenHalloween definitely is a time to embrace dressing up. My Sensory Seeker loves nothing better than dressing up. All those different textures, and I think it really is where he is comfortable at using his imagination. Letting them get themselves dressed will also help them with orientation, textures, fastenings (zips, buttons, bows, laces etc). We also have a mirror for him – so that he can see what he looks like. I find that when he uses the mirror he also uses different expressions – and he can see what that looks like too.  Or you can use face paint – which is fantastic for tactile stimulation.

Halloween Games

The Mummy Race

Sensory HalloweenMy boys loved this game. Basically get into two teams with the child with Sensory Processing Disorder (or any child) to be the Mummy. Then get the other children to wrap them up. We used toilet paper but you could use bandages or any other white material for a deeper pressure. The winning team can either be the one who has their Mummy all wrapped up the quickest, or have a time limit and the winner is the one who is the most wrapped at the end. If you wanted to add more sensory experiences to it the Mummy could have to run around too.

Go Away Ghost!

Sensory HalloweenA number of children are scared of the dark, and at Halloween ghosts and monsters are even more likely to frighten them. The Go Away Ghost game can also be beneficial to the child who gets upset when something messy touches them (something in their shoe, a cobweb, a wet leaf, a grain of sand, wet paint); Or the child who is worried about something touching them; the unresponsive child who does not react to what is going on around them; the child who has trouble focusing on an activity, or has trouble making the transition between activities; and when they have trouble with an activity and needs removing. This game is good for their imaginations too.

The child says (whispers or shouts depending on their sensory need) – “Go Away Ghost Get off!” Get the child to use their hands to get the ghost off their whole body – pushing the ghost off their hair, down their face, shoulders, upper body, arms, hands, pulling him off their fingers, down their tummy to the legs (give him a kick off), shake him off their feet, then shake all over and jump, jump around in the space. Then get the child to take deep breaths and say, “That’s good, it is better.”

Apple Bobbin and Scary Spaghetti

I think this is especially good if your child is like mine in that he struggles with his diet. Sensory HalloweenSometimes he will not even try touching something just because of its appearance or smell. Putting some coloured water in a bowl and throw in some apples is a great way to encourage him to try putting the apple in his mouth because he knows it is a game and he is not expected to eat it. I think this takes the pressure off him. This could be used with black, red and green water – maybe have the 3 different bowls. Rewarding with sweets for participating is always a useful incentive I find too.

Sensory HalloweenIf they are not quite ready for putting their face in what about a game of scary spaghetti – where you place the cooked spaghetti in some jelly with some Halloween toys (eyes, spiders, etc) – and the idea is to put your hand in and pull out a particular Halloween toy to win. This will help them develop their sense of what things feel like, and what shapes they are without their sense of sight. You can do this with or without a face mask – depending on how comfortable they are with it.

Alternatives to Halloween Parties

Frozen Spiders

It doesn’t have to be a party with lots of people around – why not try frozen spiders in the bath. Last year my Sensory Seeker loved it. I simply filled tubs with plastic spiders and coloured water. I put them in the freezer and let my Sensory Seeker dissolve them in the bath. He had a lot of fun and discovered how the blocks of froze spiders disappear in his hot bath. Also how his bath changed colour and the fascination of more and more spiders appearing as the ice dissolved.

Sensory Halloween

Halloween Craft and Sensory Bins

Or why not have a Halloween crafting session. Great for fine motor, textures, etc. We made our own Halloween treat bags from just paper and odd bits – perfect for carry a few treats.

sensory halloween

Or why not make a sensory bin.