Fun + Simple Wreath Craft for the Holidays! 

Hey CBG’ers! It is officially the holiday season! With the kids home from school, you might be scratching your head, wondering how to keep them occupied this holiday season. This week in the blog, we are bringing you a fun and cute craft that’s super simple and requires minimal supplies. See below for the instructions! 

*Craft courtesy of Country Living Magazine 

Supplies Needed: 

Green Felt 

Festive ribbon 

Craft wire 

Mini ornaments 

Hot glue 

Instructions: 

Using your wire, create a circular wreath form. It can be as large or as small as you’d like! Cut square strips out of your green felt. Have the kiddos help you tie the strips of felt to the wire frame. Using your hot glue, attach your ornaments any way you’d like. Use your festive ribbon to hang your wreath, and viola! A unique and festive craft that’s super fun for the holidays!

 

CBG is here for your family, no matter what the season! We can be reached at 850-320-6555, or support@cayerbehavioral.com. Feel free to reach out!

Showing gratitude is one of the simplest yet most powerful things humans can do for each other.” – Randy Pausch

It’s that time of year! Time to prepare your turkey and gather around the table with family. This year has been stressful for all, but we hope you find some peace this holiday season with family. Enjoy every moment spent with family and friends, and don’t forget to slow down and take a moment to be grateful. Even during a difficult year, we can always find things to appreciate in our lives. At CBG, we are grateful for each and every one of your kids. Thank you for letting us into your lives, and giving us the opportunity to make a difference in the life of your child! 

This is a reminder that CBG will be CLOSED on Thanksgiving Day, November 26th, and the Friday following. For questions, reach out to 850-320-6555, or support@cayerbehavioral.com 

 

Happy Veterans Day! 

Happy Thursday, Cayer Crew! We hope you enjoyed your day off from school or work yesterday. While it’s nice to have a little mid-week break, we have to stop and appreciate the reason why we have the day off. CBG thanks our men and women in uniform for their service, today and every day! 

Originally called Armistice Day, Veterans Day originated as the first anniversary of the end of WWI. Since then, it has become a national holiday that is respected all across the country. This week, we honor soldiers who gave their life for this country and are still actively serving. We also honor the spouses, children, and family members of military families – your sacrifice does not go unnoticed! Even though 2020 threw us many challenges, it is so important to step back and pay respect to those who selflessly serve us every day. Rain or shine, they are always standing by to protect us. Thank you! 

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” – John F. Kennedy

 

Photo by Timothy Hale

The office will be CLOSED today, Wednesday, November 11th. We will reopen tomorrow. We can be reached at support@cayerbehavioral.com, or 850-320-6555!

 

The weather is finally cooling off, which means it’s the perfect time to snuggle up and watch a fun, Halloween movie! This week in the blog, we are bringing you our top 5 picks for movies with the kids, including a “Scary Factor” to help pick the movie that’s best for your family! 

Halloweentown (1998)

Scary Factor: ⅖ pumpkins 

Parents who grew up in the 90’s or early 20’s will remember this one fondly! Halloweentown is a good pick for kids 7+; there are some mildly scary scenes involving the villain, but nothing too scary! Overall, it is a cute tale involving a brother and sisters trying to find their home. 

Casper (1995)

Spooky Factor: ⅕ pumpkins 

This is another slightly older movie, but still a good one nonetheless! There are some mild moments of bad language, but the material itself isn’t too bad. Young and older kids alike can enjoy this sweet tale about a ghost and his human friend. 

Monster House (2006)

Scary Factor: ⅘ pumpkins 

This fast-paced movie might be better for older kiddos and preteens who enjoy a thrill! There are several darker elements and scares, but nothing too intense. Parents will enjoy the fast-paced plot and funny characters! 

The Addams Family (2019)

Scary Factor: ⅕

This light-hearted tale has many good themes like acceptance, family, and love. It isn’t too scary, and young kids will enjoy the animation and funny characters. Overall, a great pick for family movie night! 

Hotel Transylvania (2012)

Spooky Factor: ⅕ 

This film is also more recent, but still a great one. It features a hotel full of fun, wacky monsters, and a sweet storyline about love. Not too scary, this movie is good for small kids, but older kids and parents will also enjoy the funny writing and jokes. 

Grab your popcorn and settle in with one of these cute films this week! 

CBG is here for all your behavioral needs. Contact your local RBT or BCBA if you need assistance with anything! We can also be contacted at 850-320-6555, or support@cayerbehavioral.com

Happy Thursday, Cayer Crew! If you have teens or pre-teens at home, there’s no doubt you’re familiar with Tik Tok. The viral app was launched in 2016, but gained popularity in 2019 and quickly became a household name. Now, it boasts over 60 million monthly active users in the United States alone. While most of its content consists of dancing, pranks, and joking, many people have utilized its popularity for good. Meet three families have dedicated their accounts to telling their autism stories and raising awareness for the condition: 

The McGuire Family 

@haley_mcquire_photo

5-year old Micah Mcquire has nonverbal autism, and had never spoken before, until his mom caught a heartwarming moment of him saying his name for the first time on video. Since then, Micah has been rapidly improving. He has begun to speak without being prompted to, follow directions, and even form whole sentences on his own. His mom, Haley, has devoted their account to chronicling Micah’s journey. Check out their account here: https://www.tiktok.com/@haley_mcguire_photo/video/6874993603832319238?_d=secCgsIARCbDRgBIAIoARI%2BCjyG0c0sxKQwUM0cFgzF42ySNMBjfUIf4TchOcsIRjDMeNg5VT3NtQSIfOJo5hkyg5yB6ET1pwQbBerVExQaAA%3D%3D&language=en&preview_pb=0&sec_user_id=MS4wLjABAAAABPidugtmy1toramUgIRY8Ur7dczN07-TpOKuW09ZCoMXZKDaqPq1Ta_KL6yxCrdt&share_item_id=6874993603832319238&share_link_id=D0E1AFB7-A410-4DC2-B62D-2952B067F64A&timestamp=1602687813&tt_from=copy&u_code=d60jllk6jmgm28&user_id=6684787093329216517&utm_campaign=client_share&utm_medium=ios&utm_source=copy&source=h5_m 

     The Miceli Family

@giacimiceli 

Sisters Carolina and Maria started this account for their brother, Giaci, who is on the autism spectrum. Giaci is twenty-four, and lives semi-independently with his family in Canada. The sisters made the account to show his life, and raise awareness for autism. Through their Tik Tok account, they have raised thousands of dollars for autism-based charity groups in the Ontario area! “Quite a lot of people have been grateful, not only to us, but especially to Giaci for being the hardworking individual like he is and showing them that their child, if they have a toddler or a nephew, brother, sister, cousin with autism, that the sky’s the limit, they can beat the stigma and still be an independent person on the spectrum.” – Caroline Miceli 

Check out their account here: https://www.tiktok.com/@giacimiceli?_d=secCgsIARCbDRgBIAIoARI%2BCjwq7VJ4oNmsEHWlnxua6u4RgT%2BsPKGOWZSnIrAoYexwUspha6yww6HRpAlciDZ1fblRlP8HIgszl0RYL5kaAA%3D%3D&language=en&sec_uid=MS4wLjABAAAAWeFNhEMA4UAIrqoO-0wuzspCB6DX_LcnRdZJH_D4GtIjbTL6aLFCUzFp-1-DqLyU&sec_user_id=MS4wLjABAAAABPidugtmy1toramUgIRY8Ur7dczN07-TpOKuW09ZCoMXZKDaqPq1Ta_KL6yxCrdt&share_author_id=6532041542280970241&share_link_id=A340A327-C64B-49B4-94DD-B8F9A2BBDB55&tt_from=copy&u_code=d60jllk6jmgm28&user_id=6684787093329216517&utm_campaign=client_share&utm_medium=ios&utm_source=copy&source=h5_m

     Paige Layle 

@paigelayle

Paige is a twenty-year old young woman from Ontario who is living with ASD. Because she is very high-functioning, she often faces doubters and skepticism when she talks about her condition. Because of this, she decided to start a Tik Tok account to talk about her struggles and be an advocate for other women and girls on the spectrum. Paige owns her own successful lash business, and speaks out about finding work on the spectrum! Check out her account here: https://www.tiktok.com/@paigelayle

We love to see people using their platform to spread awareness! Autism affects millions of children, and awareness is so important. CBG is always here to help you and your children! If you need assistance, please don’t hesitate to reach out. We can be reached at 850-320-6555, or support@cayerbehavioral.com

Happy Thursday, Cayer Crew! With all the bad news these days, it’s easy to get caught up in the negative. Don’t walk around with a cloud over your head! This week, we’re bringing you three positive news highlights to brighten your mood. 

  1. “Greek Athlete Carries Disabled Woman Up Mount Olympus – Fulfilling her Life-Long Dream” 

22-year old Eleftheria Tosiou always dreamed of climbing Mount Olypmus, but feared her disability would limit her from ever achieving this goal. In college, she met athlete Marios Giannakou, who would become a good friend. Marios carried her on his back up the top of the mountain, helping her see her life-long dream come true! Read more on the Good News Network: https://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/greek-athlete-carries-disabled-woman-up-mount-olympus/

2. “102-Year-Old Wears PPE to Cast her Ballot”

When 102-year-old Bea Lumpkin was born, women did not have the right to vote. Lumpkin has never missed a presidential election, and did not let the coronavirus stop her! Dressed in full PPE, she successfully cast her mail-in ballot. Read more on the Today Show: https://www.today.com/parents/102-year-old-wears-ppe-cast-mail-ballot-viral-photo-t193369

3. “Dad Builds Desks for Those Who Need Them” 

With the numbers of students working from home continues to increase, not everyone has a safe, quiet place to do school work. Mitchell Couch of Lemoore, California, has made it his mission during quarantine to make sure every child has a clean work space. His wife even got in on the project, and started crafting desks while Couch was at work. Read more on MSN: https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/good-news/ive-gotten-thousands-of-messages-dad-builds-desks-for-students-who-need-them/ar-BB19zUm8

We hope these stories have lifted your spirits! These days, it’s easy to feel discouraged. Focus on the good, and try to stay positive, CBG Crew!

CBG is here for all your behavioral needs. We have been in the Tallahassee area for over 15 years, and are committed to improving the lives of children in the area. For more information, call 850-320-6555, or email us at support@cayerbehavioral.com.

Happy Fall, Cayer Crew! The temperature has finally started to dip below 80, which means it’s almost Halloween time! All kids love to dress up like their favorite superhero, princess, or animal, but this can come with extra challenges for kids with autism. Many store-bought costumes come with velcro, zippers, glitter, and other materials that might be over-stimulating for a child with autism spectrum disorder. This week in the blog, we’re covering some costume ideas that are simple and comfortable for your child with autism!

It sounds simple, but you can use normal clothes in your kiddo’s closet to create some spooky looks! One super easy idea is a black cat: dress them in all black, and use makeup to create some fun little whiskers! Another super simple idea is a Minion. All you need is a yellow shirt, overalls, and some goggles! You can also use soft, patterned pajamas for a simple look!

Another super simple idea is a restaurant employee – if your kiddo’s favorite place is Chick Fil A, make them a costume with a red shirt, khakis, and a name tag! Super easy and comfortable!

If you’re looking to purchase a costume, there are several great companies out there that manufacture costumes with sensory issues in mind. One good one is Autism-Products.com; they offer career costumes like firefighters, veterinarians, and postal workers. Additionally, Target now offers adaptive costumes for individuals of all abilities. Included in this line are onesies designed to accommodate sensory issues!

Another tip that might help if your child is apprehensive about wearing a costume is to get the whole family involved. By utilizing them for a group costume, you can choose how simple or complicated you want your costumes to be! One last tip to always have a back up costume, just in case the one you planned on doesn’t work out.

At CBG, we know that behavioral issues don’t take a break for things like Halloween. If you find your child struggling with behavioral issues regularly, please reach out! Your Cayer RBT’s and BCBA’s are here to assist you and your family. We can be reached at 850-320-6555 or support@cayerbehavioral.com. 

Cool weather lovers rejoice! The temperature has finally dipped below 80, and it’s time for some fall fun! The cooler weather, combined with the increase in screen time this school year, makes this the perfect time to get outside with the kids. This week in the blog, we’re bringing you 25 activity ideas that are perfect for autumn!

  1. Take a nature walk – look for birds, lizards, and squirrels!

  2. Rake up leaves and make a pile to jump in.

  3. Collect leaves from your yard and use them to make leaf rubbings using crayons

  4. Collect pinecones and decorate using glitter, felt, or pom-poms.

  5. Visit a pumpkin patch and pick out your own little pumpkin to take home!

  6. Decorate your pumpkin friend using paint, googly eyes, or carve them.

  7. Take a hayride!

  8. Visit a corn maze.

  9. Make your own “haunted house” with costumes, decorations, and spooky music.

  10. Have a halloween dance party with songs like “Monster Mash”, “Thriller”, and “I Want Candy”!

  11. Use the pumpkin seeds from your pumpkin friend to make a yummy snack!

  12. Take a bike ride in the park.

  13. Have a spooky movie marathon!

  14. Host a bonfire outside and roast s’mores.

  15. Make kid-friendly Pumpkin Lattes.

  16. Host a halloween candy trade-off with friends.

  17. Play Ghost in the Graveyard.

  18. Make a handprint Turkey!

  19. List all the things you are grateful for as a family.

  20. Take a drive and see how many different leaf colors you can find.

  21. Bake a yummy berry crisp.

  22. Make a Halloween card for a relative.

  23. Create a Fall centerpiece or wreath using decorations, leaves, and flowers.

  24. Make DIY Halloween costumes using items in your home.

  25. Download some Halloween or Fall coloring pages.

We hope that these Fall activities are fun for you and the kiddos! CBG is here to serve you and your family – if you find your child is struggling with behavioral issues, please reach out! We are here to help. We can be reached at 850-320-6555, or support@cayerbehavioral.com!

Back to school is here, and with it comes a host of nasty germs from your kiddo’s classroom! Staying healthy is more important now than ever, but it can be difficult for kids to understand. In today’s blog, we’re bringing you some helpful tips to make sure your kiddos are staying safe and avoiding nasty bugs at school! 

Emphasize the importance of masks. 

For younger kids especially, it can be hard to understand why keeping a mask on is so important. It might help to let them pick out fun patterns and colors for their masks. You can also do “practice runs” – have your child wear his or her mask around the house to get used to the feeling of wearing it for long periods of time. Make sure to keep masks clean and dry – the CDC recommends washing masks as regularly as other clothing items! 

Practice proper hand-washing. 

Hand-washing is so vital to staying healthy! Make sure your kiddos know to wash hands before eating, after touching toys or supplies, and after using the bathroom. Remember to scrub for at least 20 seconds – to help kids remember this, practice washing and singing the Happy Birthday song twice to get the timing down! 

Teach kids about social distancing. 

Social distancing and masks are the most effective way to stop the spread of coronavirus. And while social distancing in an elementary school classroom isn’t always realistic, it’s important that kids understand to keep their space from one another. An easy way to teach this is the “bubble” example. Don’t let anyone into your personal “bubble”, and if they intrude, politely ask them to take a step back! 

Teach your kids to be aware of their bodies. 

Kids are constantly growing and learning, and might not always realize when they’re feeling off. Emphasize the importance of being aware of your body, and make sure kids know to tell an adult if they are feeling bad! It might be helpful to teach them the symptoms of different illnesses, like a  cold vs. a tummy bug, etc. 

Emphasize mental health, as well as physical health. 

There’s no doubt that this year has been hard on everyone mentally. Kids are feeling the strain of that just as much as adults – missing their friends and the traditional back-to-school routine can be hard on their little minds. Emphasize the importance of mental health, and how to recognize when they are feeling sad, stressed, anxious, etc. It’s ok to take a mental health day every now and then! 

If you find that your child is having behavioral issues resulting from going back to school, please reach out! Cayer Behavioral Group has been providing care for over 15 years, and we are here to help. Our team of RBT’s and BCBA’s are here for your family, regardless of what your child’s needs are. We can be contacted at 850-320-6555, or support@cayerbehavioral.com!

Staying Calm during the Back to School Madness! 

Recognizing your child’s stress + Tips on How to Manage It 

Happy Thursday, CBG’ers! There’s no doubt the past few months have been tough on everyone. For some children with autism, understanding what’s happening in the world may be particularly difficult. Often, routines are extremely important for children diagnosed with ASD, and when one is broken it can result in a major meltdown. Going back to school can only add to the stress! For those of you in your second or third week, you might have already run into hiccups that can cause some behavioral backlash from your kiddos. On the blog today, we’re tackling the issue of stress – how to recognize it, and how to help your kids combat it. Whether you’re at home or in school, we hope these techniques are helpful in kicking stress to the curb! 

Recognizing the Signs

Often, children with ASD handle stress differently than their typical counterparts. Here are some tell-tale signs your kiddo is feeling the strain: 

Trouble sleeping 

Meltdowns or temper tantrums 

Avoid or withdraw from social situations

Rely on obsessions or rituals 

Rocking, spinning, or flapping their hands 

In some cases, harm themselves by biting, scratching, or head-banging. 

Of course, every child processes things differently. These are just a few of the signs to watch out for! 

Tackling the Stress

Once you’ve decided your kiddo is feeling the COVID, back-to-school panic, here are a few ways you can help them through it! 

  • Help them realize what they’re feeling – Stress is a part of life, and kids with autism spectrum disorder are not immune to it! Helping them realize what they’re feeling and validating them is an important part of managing it! 
  • Determine which situations make the stress worse – Are they scared of going out in public? Of staying indoors all day? Make a list of these situations and come up with an action plan. 
  • Encourage calming techniques – Every child is different, so it might take some workshopping with your village to come up with a game plan. Some ideas to try include physical exercise, breathing exercises, utilizing role play, going to a quiet area, or playing with a favorite toy. 
  • Use visuals to your advantage – Kids with ASD are often visual learners. You can use little cue cards or flashcards to help them get familiar with new or tough situations. For example, if they’re scared of going to school, you can walk them through the day using a school bus card, a desk card, etc. 

There are many techniques available to help your kids manage their stress at home. If it gets too much, feel free to reach out to your CBG RBT or BCBA for extra help or other techniques. Quality CAYER doesn’t wait, and we’re here to help no matter what! 

We hope this was helpful and you and your family are safe and well during this time. For more behavioral health tips, suggestions, and resources in your feed weekly, follow us on Instagram and Facebook at @cayerbehavioralgroup!