Autism Big Give Day

I’m supporting the Big Give for Autism on September 17, 2015.  Here is our story:  

Many of you know my son was diagnosed with high functioning Autism in March.  This was a huge step in helping him develop and move forward in life.  A lot of people are still in the dark about Autism and think things like “why do you have your son labeled”, “He seems normal” or “You shouldn’t label him, it will follow him forever”.  Yes, to most people he “seems” normal, and that is why he is high functioning but he has his own hurdles to over come.  Yes, Autism will be with him forever and not because I had him tested but because it is part of who he is.  What does this mean?  My son is special and unique like every other kid, sure right now he has a slight advantage in the academic arena but I can’t say if his advanced level is because he is autistic or if it is because I have been teaching him since the moment he was born.  I heard things like “why are you doing flashcards, he is just a baby” and “you should let him be a kid”.  Well, in my mind, babies come into this world with all types of knowledge and unless we as parents harness it from the beginning it gets lost as they get older.  So, yes I was the mom who was teaching her newborn colors, letters, shapes and so on.

Let’s get back to Autism.  Some people think it should be hush hush and something to be ashamed up but my little guy has far grater things in life he will need to deal with as he gets older and having the knowledge of where to start helping him cope with someone the different aspects is key to helping him have a happy normal childhood.   Before we started working with him on social integration by sending him to pre-school he was the child that would hyper-focus on trains for hours, not paying attention to anything or anyone around him.  He didn’t want to interact with other kids and if more than 3-4 kids were around he would go into his bubble and do his own thing.

Our newest hurdle is screaming, the blood curdling scream that makes you go cold.  If someone is in his way, blocking him or too close to him he will freeze and scream bloody murder until they move.  There have been times he has been bullied at the playground and he doesn’t hit back he just looks at the kid blankly and lets out the terrifying scream, you know like the ones you hear in the horror films just before the big scary scene.  Before I can get to him the bully typically runs away in fear.  Sure sounds funny, and I admit I do chuckle at how effective it is but on the flip side I work with him on taking a breath and using his words not his screeches.

Help me Give Big to Autism by joining my flash sale

I am running a 2 day flash sale in support of Autism Sept. 16-17th.  I will be donating a portion of my commission to Autism Big Give.  Go to www.burnbling.com and make sure to choose “Autism Big Give” party in the check out process.    Each day there will be a featured scent that will offer double rewards points.  I will be posting that information on the Burn Bling Facebook fan page – https://www.facebook.com/BurnBling

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First Newsletter

It is short and sweet but I worked a long time to get the header image set how I wanted it.  I have been gearing up for a launch party to start March 17th.  I am excited to get this new journey started.  Check out the newsletter, subscribe, share, fan the Facebook page and join the Party.

First Weekly Newsletter – March 11, 2015

Blizzard Juno 2015 – The Clean Up

We have been waiting all winter for snow and mother nature responded to all our desires with just over 31 inches of snow.  This store was AMAZING!

The aftermath was even more amazing.  I heard the crews outside working most of the night but it sounded like they were in the distance.  I woke at 4:30 am to a toddler nestled up to me and the sound of heavy equipment working hard.  This was a moment I had a huge decision to make … wake the little guy so he could watch these masters work hard or take the camera downstairs and take pictures and a video for him to watch.  I chose the latter of the 2 choices.

I went into the craft room, grabbed the camera and off I went.  No coat and no shoes I was on a mission.  I was filled with so much excitement I could hardly contain it.  I even did a little cheesy “Mighty Machine”  voice over for the little guy.  I will probably regret that later.  It was amazing to see them all working together.  In the 20 minutes I watched they filled 4 dump trucks full of snow from the area in front of our house.

Blizzard Juno 2015 - Aftermath Backhoe Working Hard photo DSCN5086_zps8236d85c_1.jpg

Blizzard Juno 2015 - Aftermath Loading Dumptrucks photo DSCN5084_zps638e4c78_1.jpg

A Toddler’s Head is Like a Block of Concrete

I always knew my son had a hard head.  This evening I learned just how hard it is.  His head collided with my face as he jumped and fell full force in to me.  The result…  A trip to the Emergency Room for me, where my loving almost 3 year old tells the lady at the desk “I hurt my Mommy’s nose” followed by the demand of “Fix it …(pause) Mommy’s nose bleeding”.

When we get into the room I get the chair and he gets the bed…  He didn’t even share with me.  But mainly because my head hurt so much that I didn’t want to fight with him over me needing to relax.  After about an hour of waiting, playing trucks and listening to a toddler down the hall crying in pain, and the teen in the bed next to me whining like a 2 year old my little man needed to be taken outside.   His daddy is the best.  He has been sick for a couple days and insisted he take me to the ER, which I am grateful beyond words that he did.  He had to take our stubborn and misbehaving toddler out to the car to wait.  He drove him around to try to calm him down and that wasn’t working so he called me.  Thankfully right as he called I was waiting on my discharge papers and would be right out.

Earlier this evening he said the statement “I smash mommy’s face” with an evil little snicker like he was proud of it.  Thankfully, as I was writing that my little guy looks at me with angelic eyes and repeats “I smash mommy’s face with my head.  I’m sorry Mommy” and gives me a kiss.  I love this kid more than anything.  and this one is a story for his Baby Book “The Day I Broke Mommy’s Nose”

The result of my toddler’s concrete hard head colliding with my face:

1. a broken nose
2. possibly a tiny break in my cheek bone
3. bloody nose that is still bleeding almost 6 hours later.
4. swollen sinuses
5. blood draining down my throat. (YUCK)
6. a wicked headache that neither Tylenol nor Ibuprofen is helping to relieve.
7. a referral to an ENT for next week…

Language Skills of an Almost 3 Year Old

My son who is almost 3 is too smart for his own good sometimes.  On the flip side his language skills have helped to avoid many meltdowns and tantrums.  He is starting to read, which I welcome but now I have a hard time reading a book to him.  I suppose this is natural but I miss my little boy who would let me read him a story or 5 at bedtime.  I do find it absolutely amazing that he is starting to read to me at just shy of 3 years old.

How is this too smart for his own good?  Well, he is now picking up on words we spell so he doesn’t know what we are saying.  I really thought we would have longer in the coded parent spelling language days but oh well.  Today I spelled “I C E  C R E A M” to his daddy to see if he wanted some and the little bugger says to me “chocolate please.”  I proceeded to reach for an M&M and he says “NO Mommy, I want chocolate ice cream”  There is no fooling this little critter.  So much for the surprise dessert.

Parents who haven’t made it to this stage yet…  enjoy your time of being able to spell to communicate with your other half, or any other adult.  Once it is over it is a sad realization that your baby/toddler is not a baby/toddler any more they are now turning into complex little humans.

Take a Breath

I have made it a point from an early age to really work on the feelings because I would see him get so mad.  His tantrums were getting violent and the stronger he got the more they hurt.  I was getting bruises from the kicking and hitting.  I reached out to some parents I knew with children who hit and punched during tantrums and was given a few pointers.  Best thing I have done to this point is the “take a breath” method.  I have no clue who came up with it but I have adapted it into our day and to fit the moments of frustration.  It seems to give him the power of his emotions and the ability to calm himself.  Sometimes he will do it on his own and sometimes he needs a little guidance.

Yesterday we were in the book store and he was mad because we had to leave and he didn’t want to stop playing with the train set they have (we were there for over an hour).  He threw one of the trains at my head.  He then was thrashing himself as I was putting him in his stroller and nearly tipped the whole thing over as he was doing so.  Once he was in he was thrashing back and forth like a fish out of water so I took him in the hall knelt  in front of him and held his hands gently and asked him to breath.  he took a breath and said “not working” and I soothingly asked him to take another breath and he did so repeating “not working”.  We did this a few more times and then after his last deep breath he did a huge “ahhh” exhale and said “all better”.  The process took about 4 – 5 minutes but he ws able to calm himself with guidance.

Autism is NOT a Stigma

I was told over and over “why are you going to early intervention” or “he is only 2, he is just being a boy” or “he just doesn’t like people”  WELL…  I am glad I finally stopped listening to people around me and went with my gut feeling.  So R is in the grey area of Autism so I really have no clue about children who are more on the spectrum than he is.  He is very high functioning and to someone who isn’t with him 24 hours a day he will seem fine.  But as the caregiver 24/7 I am the one who sees all these things.  I wish I would have done EI before now.  He has 3 short months with them before he turns 3 and they drop him from the program.  So, our primary focus it to get him adjusted to being in social settings with more than 3 children with out freaking out or playing in a corner by himself.  He was evaluated and it is nice to have someone who will work with him 2 days a week.  We have been blessed to be fast tracked in the system and he has been enrolled in 2 of the groups one which is run by our service advocate.  With luck they can also help get him into a good pre-school setting.  Primarily for the socialization.

For our little guy being very low level autistic is not a stigma but just a small hurdle he much work to overcome.  His social anxiety can be worked with now will hopefully help him when he is older.  Welcome to our new adventure…

 

What has happened to kind caring people??

Monday was not such a good Monday for us…  So disappointed in humanity and how people have raised their children.  My son will be raised to hold doors, help someone when they need it and ALWAYS assist a person who has been injured especially if they have a small child with them.

Sprained my ankle and my knee is all tore up…  I now know how well-behaved my 2 yr old is and how uncaring people in Gloucester, Massachusetts are.  I was at Market Basket Foods and fell on the uneven path to my car.  The path was not flush with the ground it has a dip down like a little gutter.   I had groceries on one arm and toddler holding my other hand.

Initially when I fell my son said “uttohh, mommy ok?”  Then he looked at my “booboo” and burst into tears.  I had no clue what it looked like.  I thought I had skinned my knee a little so I pulled him close and told him “mommy is ok but my booboo hurts a lot and we needed to rest for a minute before mommy can stand up.”

He sat right down with me, still crying “mommy ok??” over and over.  A man, maybe in his mid to late 20’s watched us the entire time.  From when we were walking, as I fell, as my toddler burst into tears when he saw my knee bleeding, and me getting up and hobbling to the car groceries and a toddler following as closely as he could.  I was down for a couple of minutes unable to move my foot and trying to block the pain from my mind so I could muster the will to get up and get us home.

What happened to people helping a mother with a toddler???  I am beginning to see the crappy side of people in the City of Gloucester, MA.

All cleaned up and still oozing blood 7 hours after the fall.

I took this picture this is 7 hours after the first cleaning and it has finally stopped gushing blood.  It is a nice deep skinned knee.  I have never skinned my knee so bad that it was still raw and bleeding 7 hours later.

 

Weepy Wednesday – Allergies and Pollen

Greetings loyal readers, this past week has been full of er and dr visits for my 2 yr old.  We missed our Monday Movie thanks to Pesky Pollen.  It was the Spiderman 2 movie we were looking forward to.  boohoo….

We learned YES a two year old can have a fever with an allergy attack if it is severe enough.  His poor body was fighting it off like an infection.  Who would have guessed that.  I was giving him Benadryl and that wasn’t helping very much.  His little eyes were so bloodshot it looked as if we were staring into a little imps eyes.

I searched for weather apps that showed pollen counts and came across the Pollen.com app for the iPad (well, it was under iPhone apps).  So far it has been a great tool to use.  It is up to the minute and can extend out 4 days which allows for planning outings.

Pollen, pollen go away
Little Bobby wants to play

Food Friday – Paleo Diet week 2

I have been on the paleo diet for 2 weeks and have so much natural energy it still amazes me.  I feel like dinner planning is so much easier having a basic plan.  It is also easier to keep sweets and bad carbs out of our diet when there are so many delicious substitutes.  Last weekend a group of friends got together and we celebrated our children’s 2nd birthdays with a pot luck picnic.  Quite a few of us are now doing the paleo diet so it was interesting to see the things everyone brought.  My favorite were the mock chocolate chip cookies.  they melted in my mouth having the texture of a soft peanut butter cookie.  DELICIOUS!!  I found a similar recipe to try.

My attempt is well, very good for a first try. I added my own twist to it.  I used the recipe from Fast Paleo as my base.

 

Ingredients:

  • 3 1/4 cups Almond Flour
  • 1/2 cup Coconut Oil
  • 1/4 cup Honey
  • 1/4 cup Pure Maple Syrup
  • 1 teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon of Pure Almond Extract
  • 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 1/2 cups Dark Chocolate Chips
  • 2 eggs

Directions

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees (F).  Line a cookie sheet with a silicone mat, parchment paper or aluminum foil.  In a large bowl combine 3  1/4 cups of almond flour, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, a teaspoon of salt and a teaspoon of baking soda.  In a medium bowl, mix together 2 eggs, 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract, 1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract, 1/2 cup of coconut oil, 1/4 cup pure maple syrup and 1/4 cup of honey.  Combine the wet and dry ingredients then add 1 1/2 cups chocolate chips.  Spoon them onto the lined pan and put them in the oven.  Bake for about 8-10 minutes (the tops will start to get golden brown). If they go longer than that the bottoms burn because of the sugar in the honey.
Should make between 18-24 cookies depending on size.