After transitioning 20 years ago I had always struggled with producing a voice congruent with my gender. Finally after some issues I was advised by an ENT doctor that my attempts to produce my voice were physically damaging my voice box. I was referred to Amanda and we began to work on my voice last year.At first I was skeptical that my voice could ever change. However Amanda showed me how to develop and use my voice box, nose, throat and mouth properly to produce a richer fuller voice more appropriate to my gender, rather than a thin falsetto that I had been making do with. Amanda also concentrates on patterns of speech and gestures, talking in loud environments and even public speaking.Now I can order in restaurants without puzzled looks from waiters and waitresses, speak on the phone without confusing people and strike up conversations where normally I would remain quiet. Also the damage I caused to my voice box is nearly healed. I can honestly say the ability to maintain a voice matching my appearance has probably been the most important change I have made.To top it all, Amanda is just a wonderful lady who understands our concerns and does whatever she can to help. I wish I had found her earlier. Thank you Amanda for helping me to finally find my voice.
After only a few months of attending Artful Expressions speech and social skills groups, I began to notice more speech development in my son than I had ever seen before. I had been taking him to private speech therapy for years with little progress made. In less than a year he went from nonverbal to using words to make requests. I think the social atmosphere of these groups is much more conducive to learning than one on one therapy. I also think Sarah and Amanda make learning fun, which makes it much more effective. Camp Ausome has been amazing and given my son a wonderful summer camp experience that has never been available to him before. I cannot say enough about how lucky I feel to have Artful Expressions as part of our community, and my son’s life. I look forward to many more years of fun and learning with Sarah and Amanda.
Artful Expressions has been an incredible blessing to my family and my five year old son with autism. Sarah and Amanda are incredibly competent and compassionate speech therapists with a dedication to the Olympia area and the special needs community. They have taken the time to really get to know my son and adapt activities to his ability level and interests. Sarah and Amanda make learning FUN, celebrate all victories and shower their families with love and acceptance. Through camps and weekly AAC group my son has grown exponentially in his willingness and desire to interact with others, his ability to communicate through his IPAD and his excitement over learning. When he is with Amanda and Sarah he is understood, loved, accepted and challenged. My family has been changed for good since starting at Artful Expressions. I can’t thank them enough for what they have given my family.
Sound bite: At Artful Expressions my child is not a drain on limited resources [public school system] or a diagnostic code in a computer system [the healthcare industry]. Instead he gets to be a person that is deserving of respect, understanding, and tools that are unique to his needs and abilities. The growth I have seen in my son since attending social skills group and Camp Ausome is a testament to the passion and care that Sarah and Amanda show not just to my son, but to all the kids they serve.
Artful expressions has been the most beneficial therapy my son has ever had. When we started he was so anxious and uncomfortable everywhere we went, often times resulting in meltdowns and outbursts. He was completely non-verbal and communication was so difficult and discouraging. In the short time, we have been with artful expressions, my son has blossomed into a much more confident and relaxed child. His communication skills are skyrocketing, between actually speaking words and stringing words together, to hand signs and using his AAC device. Without artful expressions support and care my son would not have progressed as much as he has in the last year.