Written by Heidi:
(working off Kris's thoughts)
Unlike Abby, Ethan is not to far behind on stature so our accommodations aren't the same. He is also a year older and I hate to say it, but boys due tend to be stronger and I wonder if this can make a difference in the RS world. So we have made the decision to make fewer accommodations for him.
(After reading Kristen's blog I may sound mean :-( )
We choose to try to have him develop his skills without much aide in hopes that he would not feel the frustration when he was not in our “home” environment. He too struggles with hanging up a hand towel, more so because of balance issues than stature. It sure takes some midline coordination to do this. Many times I find it on the ledge of the sink. My thoughts, I'm so glad he used it! It means he washed his hands :-)
I actually never thought to add the extra handrail on the stairs that one I would of liked. It may have been a blessing in disguise however, as I'm sure his older brother would of found a way to wedge and slide the cats down between them.
This brings up another thought, how much effect is there because Ethan is a second born and Abby part of a first set. Could this be why we choose to not accommodate too much for him? You have to take in consideration that you cannot change the older siblings life too much. They are already going through their own issues with having the new kid on the block being "special". Travis also had 6 1/2 years as an only child. He was the "special" one. Come to find out "special" doesn't mean the same to a kid as it does to us adults regardless if the word needs is followed by it.
Now that's not to say we didn't make some changes. We still have the bumper pads around the fireplace. ALL around it as it is slate. this has saved more heads then just Ethan's. We also added handicap rails in the boys bath with a great horizontal low one on the back wall he can grab to get in and out ....we do however have to remind him to use it! Sigh...we also still have a special stroller. We did use a gate at the top of the stairs for a while so as he ran around up there he didn't trip and go head first down. Now it’s just used to keep the dog out of trouble at night. We no longer need a helmet! :-) :-) :-)
School has also made their own accommodations for Ethan. Once you add a crew of youngsters together the level of safety rises. He rides the special needs bus, at least for one more year. They use to have a chair with arms on it (no longer needed), he does have to wear his helmet at recess and PE, but hopefully just this one more school year also. He either has to be in front of a line or last to avoid tripping and falling when navigating through the halls.
Other then those we haven't changed much in our house.