Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Sunken Egyptian city reveals 1,200-year-old secrets | The Sideshow - Yahoo! News

Sunken Egyptian city reveals 1,200-year-old secrets | The Sideshow - Yahoo! News

A giant statue recovered from the ancient city Heracleion. (Reuters)
Until a decade ago, no one knew if Heracleion, believed to be an ancient harbor city, was fiction or real. Now, reports the Telegraph, the researchers who found it—150 feet beneath the surface of Egypt's Bay of Aboukir—are sharing some of the amazing historical artifacts preserved there.
The finds include 64 ships, 16-foot-tall statues, 700 anchors and countless gold coins and smaller artifacts.
According to underwater archeologist Franck Goddio, credited with having discovered the site, the city was probably built sometime around the 8th century B.C., which makes it older than the famed city of Alexandria. Over the years, it fell victim to a number of natural disasters before being swallowed by the sea, probably around A.D. 700.
“We are just at the beginning of our research,” said Goddio. “We will probably have to continue working for the next 200 years for [it] to be fully revealed and understood.”
It's believed that gradual soil erosion eventually caused Heracleion to fall into the Mediterranean. “It is now clear that a slow movement of subsidence of the soil affected this part of the south-eastern basin of the Mediterranean,” Goddio writes on his site. “The rise in sea level—already observed in antiquity—also contributed significantly to the submergence of the land.”
The Telegraph reports that researchers are beginning to more fully understand what daily life was like in the city, also called “Thonis.” Mainly, they describe it as having served as the main hub for sea traffic entering the region, including all trade from Greece.
“We are getting a rich picture of things like the trade that was going on there and the nature of the maritime economy in the Egyptian late period,” Damian Robinson, director of the Oxford Centre for Maritime Archaeology at the University of Oxford, told the Telegraph. Robinson is part of the team that has been busy uncovering artifacts from Heracleion's sunken remains.
“It was the major international trading port for Egypt at this time,” Robinson added. “It is where taxation was taken on import and export duties. All of this was run by the main temple.”
The city is also believed to have had a rich cultural history. Helen was said to have visited it with her lover Paris shortly before the onset of the Trojan War.
A researcher looks over a sunken statue from Heracleion (Christoph Gerigk/Franck Goddio/Hilti Foundation)

Northern Crusades - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Northern Crusades - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Monday, April 29, 2013

About Bruce Heard, D&D, and new stories: Bye-Bye Princess Ark

About Bruce Heard, D&D, and new stories: Bye-Bye Princess Ark

10 Activities To Relax Your Child With Special Needs | Friendship Circle -- Special Needs Blog

10 Activities To Relax Your Child With Special Needs | Friendship Circle -- Special Needs Blog

10 Activities To Relax Your Child With Special Needs

10 Activities To Relax Your Child With Special NeedsGetting your child with special needs to relax and focus can be a difficult job. There are many situations in which our children need some help to settle down. Whether your child is excited by something fun and enjoyable or something scary and unfamiliar, a calming exercise may be needed to move on to the next routine or activity.
Each child responds differently to calming activities so it is helpful to come up with a range of activities and strategies that could be calming for your child.
Here are 10 activities to build into your child’s routine and environment, which can be calming and soothing.

1. Play quiet music

Choose music that is steady and generally mellow. Music has a natural ability to filter out noises and set the mood for the environment. If your child is out in a busy environment, try noise-cancelling headphones.

2. Create a small, quiet area for your child

Sometimes children need their own personal space where they can block out the extra noise and visual distractions. This could especially work if your child tries to escape his/her current environment if overwhelmed. Try something like a small tent or create a small book area in your home that your child can easily retreat to when it is time for them to have a break.

3. Deep breathing exercises

Practice slow breathing with your child. Model slow, deep breaths for your child to imitate. If need be, teach your child to trace his/her finger in the shape of a square or figure-8 to help pace their breather.

4. Try a little yoga

The combination of slow breathing, stretching, tensing of muscles and concentration to hold a position can be centering and calming. Introduce this to your child in a fun way, such as a children’s yoga program or a DVD.

5. Go for a walk with your child

Taking a walk can help to release some of the extra energy that has been building up in your child, especially if he/she needs a break from an activity. A change in scenery and fresh air is helpful.

6. Turn out the lights

There are times that a child could be sensitive to light. In some cases, if a child is stressed or overwhelmed, turning out the lights or going into a darkened space can help bring a sense of calm and security. If you are trying to settle your child in the evening, turn down the lights as the evening routine winds down.

7. Give a bear hug, squeeze or back rub

Be careful when approaching your children to give any type of pressure, especially if he/she is sensitive to touch or startles easily.

8. Sit in a rocking chair or swing

The slow, rhythmic movement can be soothing for your child. If your child is unsure about this, you can have him/her sit on your lap while you rock to settle them in.

9. Offer your child something to drink

A drink of water or juice can be cool your child down if he/she is overheated. In some cases, drinking from a straw is also helpful because of the sucking motion, which provides some sensory input through the mouth.

10. Look for clues from the past

Think back to activities that worked to soothe your child when he/she was an infant. Often you will find clues about new activities that could be a great calming activity for your child.

When Using These Activities

Special Needs ActivitiesKeep in mind, there may not be one activity that always works for your child. Some activities will not come naturally to your child.
Introduce and practice these activities when your child before suggesting them in a tense moment. When possible, give your child some choice in what he/she would like to do as a calming activity. Choices could be given verbally but also through visuals, like a choice board.
If your child has sensory processing challenges, a more prescribed and guided approach may be helpful. Consult with an Occupational Therapist for a more thorough assessment and program suited for your child’s needs