We have had a very busy few months in the Tourette tales household. Christmas is a big deal in our house with preparations starting early.
This year, due to shortage of tickets our annual trip to see Father Christmas in the Harrod’s Grotto was in mid November. This was our 10th visit to the grotto and was absolutely amazing. George sometimes struggles with crowded places but as we had a weekday evening slot the store was fairly quiet and he coped really well. The wait in the queue passed quickly due to the interactive games and activities along the way which we all enjoyed. There was also an option to skip the queue if George found he couldn’t cope, the booking staff were very helpful and made us feel welcome and comfortable.
Our Christmas really began on the 29th November when we awoke to find the elves had fully decorated during the night, put up our tree and even changed the bed covers to Christmas ones. Our elves Chilly and Chillyette had arrived with a North Pole breakfast. It was like Christmas day.
The Christmas period means a lot of changes in school routines for George and lots of day trips and excitement in the run up.
We made the decision many years ago that the whole family had to do the things we enjoy and it wasn’t fair to George or his siblings to cut out all our traditions. Although George struggles at times, he looks forward to the things that make our family Christmas.
We have had to tweak things over the years to allow George to enjoy things and cope with them and this year was probably our most successful Christmas.
We had our elves stay with us throughout December getting up to all sorts of mischief in the night. We managed to visit the reindeer at the garden centre, the boys went to Beaver and Cub scout camp together, carol services, crib services, walking around to see the local lights. It was amazing to see George taking part in everything and enjoying it.
Christmas eve can be a tricky day for George, lots to do and overwhelming feelings that sometimes bubble over. This year we made sure all the chores were done the day before so we could relax during the day. We split up the many traditions over the day, we made our reindeer dust and sprinkled it outside in the morning we hung our stockings early and only had one difficult moment mid-afternoon and a bit of over excitement at bedtime.
One of the things that helps George during this period of change of routines is the fact that we do the same things every year so although there is a lot going on George knows exactly what to expect. We allow plenty of time for activities like baking or craft so George can join in at his own pace and dip in and out as he feels comfortable.
Father Christmas brought George a few new fidgets that went down really well. He has expressed an interest in doing a video review so watch this space.