Our iPad journey continues

The boys’ iPads arrived this week. I can hardly believe that they are here, it seems like a dream come true! I’ve got a special surprise planned for those who made a financial contribution to our fund but in the interim I wanted to acknowledge some individuals and developers I’ve found to be especially supportive of the boys and I so far.

Shannon Rosa

Shannon's son Leo with his iPad

Honestly, I want to be like Shannon when I grow up. I had a vague idea that iPads would be good for the boys but then I listened to a podcast where she outlined the huge impact an iPad had on her son. I contacted her via twitter and she inspired me to start fundraising so I could get iPads for the boys as soon as possible. She has continued to be very supportive – she retweeted my fundraising appeals, put a link to my fundraising page on The Thinking Person’s Guide to Autism blog which she co-edits and she even passed along some codes she got for Duck Duck Goose and Touch Trainer apps so I could try them out for free! Her personal blog is www.squidalicious.com and it’s a great resource if you are interested in how iPads can benefit those with autism. Shannon maintains a spreadsheet of apps that Leo has found particularly fun and or helpful and she runs an iPads for autism workshop that she’s been taking on the road.

Jim Martin
Who? Well, you may know him as @Gingerheaddad from twitter. Jim has been my greatest cheerleader throughout this whole process and an invaluable source of advice. He edited and provided input on my fundraising page, blogged about my fundraising, allowed me to guest post on his blog, retweeted endlessly for me, posted about the boys’ iPad campaign on his facebook page, helped me set up my yard sale… he’s been a great friend to Owen, Oliver and myself. If you don’t subscribe to Jim’s blog then you really should – he’s funny, smart and always a good read. You can find him at www.gingerheaddad.wordpress.com
Edited to remove reference to A4cwsn and Gary James, who I unfortunately can no longer support.

Grace and Lisa

 Owen is non-verbal and I introduced PECs (Picture Exchange Communication system) to him a while ago. He took to it like a duck to water. Grace is a PECs app that was the brain child of Lisa Domican who has two children on the spectrum and uses PECs with her daughter (bet you can guess her daughter’s name!). Lisa has been wonderful ever since I contacted her with questions about the Grace app – she emailed me a copy of the manual, answered my questions and we’ve connected on both Facebook and Twitter. She’s incredibly active in the community and has been a big supporter of A4cwsn’s app party. I plan on getting Grace set up for Owen this weekend but from what I’ve seen so far, it’s going to work really well for him.

ThumbArcade

These guys make me laugh. They write punny poems and have their little thumb guy appear in some “interesting pictures”. If you’re a special needs parent then you know that laughing feels especially good. I follow them on twitter and facebook and they follow me back! I always smile when I see them in my feed. To support and celebrate A4cwsn’s app party they’re giving away their Underwear app for free on June 12th. Two big thumbs up.

Oceanhouse Media

Two words: Dr. Seuss! They’re not the only books they produce apps for but OMIGOSH did they do a great job with the Seuss ones they’ve produced so far. I just got Mr. Brown Can Moo and the boys are already captivated by it. The reason I’ve mentioned them here though is not just because the two apps I have so far seem wonderful, or because their book apps are very reasonably priced in my opinion. It’s also not just because they’re another one of the many developers supporting A4cwsn. It’s because I love how responsive they have been on Facebook! Natalie Aller is the person running their FB page and she has responded all 3 times I’ve commented there, as well as sending me a personal message. I can’t begin to tell you how fabulous this makes me feel. Developers who are both interested in and appear to value feedback? Does it get any better than that?

I’m so excited about the possibilities open to us now. Next phase of our voyage is – to properly thank the people who donated money so I could buy these iPads (plan in the works 😉 ), find cases to protect this precious hardware, get the Grace app up and running, buy the First Then Visual Schedule  app from Good Karma Apps and we’ll be well on our way. Thanks to all of you who have helped so far – with money, spreading the word, moral support – it’s been a wonderful, positive, joyous experience for me and I’m really grateful.

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4 Comments on “Our iPad journey continues”

  1. Natalie Aller June 10, 2011 at 2:41 pm #

    Hi Deanne,

    You are so sweet. Thanks for the shout out, that just made my day 🙂
    I really enjoyed reading your post, we are truly lucky to be part of this wonderful community. It has been a pleasure getting to know you. I hope the boys are enjoying their new iPads!

    Good luck at the App Party tomorrow. It will be 6am here, but I’ll be there, sipping coffee on my couch observing all the fun and chaos 🙂

    Talk to you later!
    Natalie

    • OMum22 June 10, 2011 at 8:17 pm #

      Thanks for leaving the comment Natalie! Glad it made your day 🙂 I showed the boys Mr. Brown Goes Moo – Oliver was captivated! Even Owen was interested and it usually takes him a while to warm up to anything new. Thanks again for stopping by – take care!

  2. Gingerheaddad June 10, 2011 at 8:46 pm #

    Thank you for being so kind. There are so many days when parents of kids on the spectrum feel that they are alone in moving their kids forward. It helps us all and encourages us all to see families pass a milestone in the journey that autism lays out for us. What I have seen you accomplish amazes me as a guy who makes his living from fundraising, as a dad with kids on the spectrum and as person you knows that generosity lives in us all.

    • OMum22 June 10, 2011 at 11:19 pm #

      Thanks Jim, for everything 🙂

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