Minimizing Risk

This week, the cardiologist recommended that we all hunker in again, including keeping the kids home from school. With our daughter Ellie’s track record – three hospitalizations for pneumonia this summer alone – he thinks that the odds are not in her favor if she catches any respiratory virus and that she would likely need…

Extraordinary: An Ordinary Day in the Special Life of Jacqueline Bettis

By Heather Honaker Jacqueline Bettis, born with cerebral palsy, says, “I’ve always known I stand out. But my parents taught me that regardless of my disability, I’m still a person and I’m still beautiful and I have nothing to be ashamed of.” Originally from Little Rock, she graduated from Hall High School, has an undergraduate…

Extraordinary Estie: An Ordinary Day in a Special Life

Estie Johnson says these words, and also lives by them: Be your best self and live your life to the fullest because you never know what you could achieve. The sky is the limit!  A recent high school graduate, Johnson worked as an advocate for people with disabilities before the pandemic.   “I have a muscle disease…

Special Family: Secrets to School Success

Each afternoon when I pick up my daughter from school, I get a peek into a world that is all hers. Ellie, 2, was born with Down syndrome and just this summer she started walking, eating by mouth and wowing us with new words she speaks every day — all things she has worked toward…

Extraordinary: A Typical Day in the Special Life of Kylie Purifoy

Outgoing and active Kylie Purifoy is always on the move. From working in the theater department at a local high school to volunteering with the dance and drama teams, she is no stranger to the spotlight. I met Kylie and her brother and talked to him about their relationship for the November issue of Little Rock…

Extraordinary: A Typical Day in a Special Life of Lila Morrow

Young artisan Lila used one of her favorite therapy projects to begin her first business before most kids even think about starting elementary school. Introduce us to Lila.Lila is a vibrant and active 7-year-old girl who has Down syndrome. The moment she was born, our lives changed forever. We knew Lila would have Down syndrome…

Colleges Work to Empower Special Students

All parents worry about the future — no matter if the child is typically developing or not. Knowing that attending school and learning alongside peers is an option means every child has the opportunity to follow any dream. When I learned my daughter would be born with special needs, I started my research with parents…

Special Assurance in Unusual Times

If you are like me, you have exhausted all of Pinterest looking for sensory-friendly, educational activities while at home social distancing. Whether or not your kids are back in school this fall, parenting during the pandemic is hard. This is new territory; every decision seems impossible and there is even more added for us to…