Happy Easter!

To celebrate Easter, the children at Little Tulips Family Child Care had an Easter egg hunt, coloured paper eggs, made hand print bunnies, read stories about Spring and devoured some yummy treats! We love to celebrate the holidays and to make exceptional days out of ordinary ones. We take every opportunity to create meaningful celebrations with our family and the children in our care.

Easter CollageI ordered an Easter Treat Box from Angela and Kate, the two girls behind “Happiness is Homemade Baked Goods”. A portion of the sales of their treat boxes went to the Janeway Children’s Hospital.  “The Janeway Children’s Hospital Foundation is a registered Canadian charitable organization created to raise funds to benefit the healthcare of Newfoundland and Labrador’s most precious resource – our children.  Easter is such a joyous time for children, let’s help make it extra special for those who are living with health and medical issues.”

Always happy to do our part!

However you celebrate Easter, let it be colourful, let it be meaningful, let there be memories!

Happy Easter, peeps!

 

Happy Anniversary to us!!

This month, Little Tulips Family Child Care is celebrating it’s first anniversary!
That’s right.. we are one year old!

DSC_0466sIt has been an awesome year, and a busy one! We have had some very special visitors to our home, including horses and therapy dogs. We have been entertained by story-tellers, local musicians and performers, and we have created partnerships with some wonderful organizations like Project Grace and 3E Love.

We work closely with the Janeway Children’s Health and Rehabilitation Centre and have had visits from physiotherapists, occupational and speech therapists, early intervention specialists, and developmental and behavioural practitioners. We have hosted ISSP meetings and have witnessed the remarkable things that can happen when people work together!

Great things are happening here every day. Over the past year, we have witnessed our children achieve many milestones in their lives, including learning to crawl, walk, communicate and gain independence. It is a tremendously rewarding role that we have as educators and child care providers, and we don’t take that for granted.

DSC_0472sWe are extremely thankful to the many individuals who have been a part of our success this past year. We have a wonderful home visitor and Inclusion Consultant, and I know they both enjoy spending time with us.

We have an amazing little group of children here, and we are thankful for the opportunity to work with each and every one of them!

We are striving to make a difference. We are striving to improve the quality of life for children with special needs, their families, and our community.

DSC_0430sThanks to kim at carter’s Cupcakes for our lovely treats!

We are excited to see what the next year has in store for Little Tulips!
Here’s to many more!

-Julie and Andrew

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Fun with Drums

Our friend Gillian from Project Grace came by recently with percussionist Jonathan Hicks to do a drum session with our group.  Jon brought a variety of percussion instruments, from large congas, and a djembe, to chimes, and small shakers from around the world.

Drumming is often used in music therapy. Therapists use drum and percussion experiences to help children with special needs in the areas of motor strength and control.  We noticed that our own children enjoyed standing up to the tall drums and would shift their balance as they tapped with both hands.

Drumming and drum circles can also contribute to significant social and emotional improvements for the participants involved. For children with special needs, drumming can be a powerful tool to help them address many areas of development, such as communication, fine and gross motor, social, emotional and cognitive needs.

We had a great time trying out all of the instruments.  Thanks so much for sharing them with us!

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Holland Bloorview

I am honoured to have been invited to write for BLOOM, a magazine and blog created by Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital.

Holland Bloorview is Canada’s largest children’s rehabilitation hospital and provides specialized programs and clinical care for children and youth with rehabilitation and complex care needs.

Louise Kinross, the editor of BLOOM, is a parent to four children, one of whom has a rare genetic disorder and multiple disabilities. She is also communications manager at Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital.  Louise was interested in our Little Tulips Family Child Care program, and asked if I would write about how having a child with special needs led me to create Little Tulips.

Click HERE to read the article I wrote for BLOOM, and to learn the origins of our child care program!

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Drop the Bass!

Recently, the father of one of our children came in to play the double bass for us!  I have to admit, I was not overly familiar with the double bass (ok, I thought it was the same as a cello), but I learned a lot!  The double bass is also called an upright bass, bass fiddle or bass violin.  It is in the violin family and is the largest and lowest pitched bowed string instrument. It stands about six feet tall, and towered over our little ones!  They enjoyed plucking on the strings and feeling the vibrations through the body of the instrument.

Being a Dad, he was well versed in children’s songs, so we had a great time singing along to some classics like “Old MacDonald”, “B-I-N-G-O” and “Mary Had a Little Lamb”.  Thanks so much for sharing your music with us!  It was a new experience for all of us!

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Oh The Joys of Discovery Toys!

The Discovery Toys company was founded by an early childhood educator in 1978 and it continues to grow from a passion for education. Discovery Toys is committed to bringing fun, safe and developmentally appropriate toys and products to children and adults of all abilities. Their products have useful applications for children and adults with developmental disabilities.

Discovery Toys combines multiple levels of learning in every toy.  Various elements of math, science, and language are incorporated into all of their products and they are designed to engage and develop a child’s motor skills and higher levels of thinking.

Discovery Toys strives to incorporate a unique play experience into each of their products that stimulates multiple centers in the brain simultaneously – an experience that promotes both critical thinking AND open-ended imaginary play.

Veronica Vardy is an Independent Discovery Toys Educational Consultant.  She recently visited Little Tulips and brought in a selection of toys for our children to explore!

For more information or to contact Veronica, visit her website HERE.

Shop Discovery Toys exclusive collection of award-winning Toys, Books, and Games!
“These high-quality toys are so much fun, the kids will never guess they are LEARNING!”

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International Day of Acceptance

coverJanuary 20th, 2014 is the 5th Annual International Day of Acceptance!

This is a day to promote the social acceptance of disability and to honor the late Annie Hopkins, founder of 3E Love and creator of the International Symbol of Acceptance (wheelchair heart symbol).

Join us in telling the world that you are accepting of people with disabilities.  As parents, siblings, relatives, spouses, children, care-givers, teachers, friends – you can have an impact on the future if you wear your heart on your sleeve and proudly demonstrate your acceptance of others.

Let’s join together to:
Embrace diversity. Educate your community. Empower each other. Love life!

Diversity is the one true thing we all have in common. Celebrate it every day.

Start the conversation of acceptance.
To learn more and get involved, visit www.DayofAcceptance.com

banner* A huge thank-you to our family and friends who have been so accepting and supportive.  You guys are awesome!!

If anyone else would like a ‘wheelchair heart’ shirt, we will be ordering more very soon!
Send me a message and I’ll make sure you get one!  juliebrocklehurst@hotmail.com
Proceeds go towards our program for children with special needs!

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