Wednesday, July 29, 2015

All Day Music (or Blog Titles – Part Two)

all day
Yesterday a friend of mine pointed out that I haven’t had a very easy “run of things” over the past month or so. This is true. Most of it has not been anything really major (aside from DC’s seizure, of course), but everything all at once on top of each other has really thrown the proverbial wrench in the works around here.  I don’t normally like to publish back-to-back “fluff” pieces or back-to-back reruns, but right now “that’s all ‘she’ wrote”. So please bear with me through one more “fluff” piece, read some of the old posts with “musical titles” listed below and remember that I really did give you prior warning about the “Blog Title Series” :)
This is one of those posts that I put together and save to post later when we are away or when I am really busy and really don’t have the time to write. Like the “Blog Title Series” (Series? Yes, there’s more), they are very often off topic or “fluff”. I like fluff, sometimes fluff is fun.
From an earlier post and what I suppose would be called the first installment:
(The original title was “We may be crawling in the dark, but we sure do have some stories” – I thought is made the post sound too serious. I decided to include it anyway because……it’s my post and I just happen to like this song – no other reason)
we are all crawling in the dark at times – we certainly were back then and really still are to some extent – but there is always humor to be found
Again, as DC would say “We hope you enjoyed the Music in Mom’s Head”

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Something’s coming…Could it be? Yes it could…….Old Age or just losing my mind?

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This is one of those posts that I put together and save to post later when we are away or when I am really busy and really don’t have the time to write (or, when I have been sick most of the week). Like the “Blog Title Series” (Series? Yes, there’s more), they are very often off topic or “fluff”. I like fluff, sometimes fluff is fun.
So when I say “the other day”, it may have really been the other day when I wrote this, but I never know how long these posts will sit before they are actually published….

To be honest, “the other day” or “last year” or “just recently” in my mind can mean just about anything these days. I often think something happened just a few years ago, only to find it happened 10 or 15 years back. I seem to have no sense of time anymore – which leads me to the point of this post….

I don’t think about my age all that often, unless of course I make some sort of mistake and then of course I blame it on my age. It is a perfectly good excuse for many things.

Then there are days like today when I start to wonder if it really is just an excuse. Granted, I have had a few things on my mind lately but still, I am beginning to wonder….

I stopped at a convenience store on my way to work this morning. I stop there quite often and almost always park in the same space. This morning my that space was taken so I parked on the other side of the building. When I came out of the store I headed towards my parking space. I looked at the car and while I was trying to open the door, I said to myself “Why does my car look so dark?” – yes I actually said that to myself! I didn’t think “Oh this is not my car” instead I thought it somehow magically changed colors!

This incident reminded me about another day a few weeks back when I pulled into the drive-thru at the bank. I pulled up to the drawer and was fishing around in my purse when a heard a voice from the speaker coming from behind me “Can I help you?”. When I looked up I realized that I had passed right by the drive-thru window and was sitting in front of the night drop drawer.

Keeping all of that in mind, I was going through my face book looking for something. Every time I start looking for anything on-line, in the house or anywhere, I never seem to find it. I do usually come across other things that distract me from what I was originally looking for. Here are a few status updates of mine that I came across:
So I guess you can’t teach an old dog new tricks…6 months with the new car and I still forget to put it in park before turning it off and am I the only one who forgets to put the cup under the KEURIG?
After looking at the pictures we HAD to have taken for work, I realize I really need to have eyelid surgery (this is, of course above and beyond all of the other issues I already knew I would see). ‪
You know you’re getting old when you can throw out/ hurt your knee just getting into the car!
Okay, so I haven’t driven an automatic in the snow since 1984! To quote DC, “I’m getting very nervous about this”
I don’t really understand what this “poking” thing is, but okay……
Remember when you could just open a toy and take it out of the box? I’ll pay cash for someone to open this!!!! 

So you know how facebook is always trying to get you to “complete your profile”? What does it say about me that the only option showing under “Which musicians do you like” is: GILBERT O’SULLIVAN????? ….and yes, I do know who he is……………………
I may or may not have just washed my spoon at work with Windex because I was too lazy to walk back downstairs to the kitchen ….
Just wondering, a week later, because that is what I do…… Is it odd that I was watching a show about Zombies, blood, guts and cannibals and the guy chewing gum (or whatever) is what grossed me out?
I just un-wrapped a cough drop, threw it in my purse and shoved the wrapper in my mouth…… It’s already been one of those days…
I just tried to open the garage door with my phone
NEVER look into the magnifying side of the mirror while wearing cheaters!
It happened! I was offered a senior discount :(
and let’s not forget The alarm went off and Mom has lost her mind 
I don’t think I have to go on……. Fortunately all of the above happened in a span of a couple of years. I would really be worried if they happened all on top of each other.

Having just said that: Today I was in the office on a Saturday. I went down to the kitchen to make a cup of tea. I got the cup, tossed in the tea bag, threw in some truvia and it wasn’t until I started filling the cup with hot water from the dispenser that  I noticed the unopened packet of truvia floating in the cup.

Later at home while making tea, I tossed in the tea bag, and a packet of truvia – making sure that I opened and poured the contents into the cup and put it into the microwave. When I took it out I discovered I had forgotten the water.

Again, I HAVE had a few things on my mind lately and I am notorious for not paying attention (she says trying to defend herself)…

I’m beginning to see a pattern emerging here……  and I think might be time to give up tea….

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

More from the Funny Pages

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funny pages
Once again I am heading back to an old website my friends and I used to run a good long while back. I have used some of the blurbs and stories from that page in two other posts: All the….. small things and We sure do have some stories, don’t we? The first was one of my most popular posts in the month of April, the second was relatively popular as well, so I decided to use the remaining stories/funnies in one more post.

“Some of the following blurbs are mine (DC was very young at the time) and some are from friends of mine  but all of them show us that there is always humor to be found. We might at times learn something valuable – but most of the time it is just plain funny.”

Random Themes
A “Serious” Combination
My girls hate vegetables. Being a good “mother” I insist that they have to have two vegetables during dinner.
Tonight my younger daughter was sitting there pondering her meal and playing with the vegetables she is supposed to be eating. She quietly put a couple kernels of corn on her fork then added some peas along with them.
She held the fork up to me and asked…..
(Peas + Corn = PORN)!!!
Several years from now, I will have to explain what my husband and I were laughing so hysterically about!

My son, who was non-verbal until he was seven, still uses his sign language often. He gave his sign language teacher and one of my friends an ornament of the “I LOVE YOU” sign as a Christmas gift. I – assuming that the “I love you” sign was pretty much universal, was surprised when my friend thanked him for the “Rock On!” ornament!

One day I had to take my son for what would be a very long doctor appointment. The parking area was one where you paid the parking attendant in the booth near the entrance to the building, not in the lot itself.
It was pouring rain when we went in but we were in the office for so long, that the rain stopped by the time we came out.
I was standing at the parking attendant’s booth counting change to pay for our parking before we walked to the car. As I was counting my son began to yell, “Hurry Up, Mom!” – I noticed the attendant laughing and I turned to see my son standing directly under a drainpipe – water pouring directly down on his head!
He thought it was still raining!
I said “*Bob, move over” – confused, he moved, put his hands out to check for rain and said “Oh”.

Children hear and remember everything (especially when you think they are not listening)

When a teacher turns to her assistant and says “It’s so hot in here, I’m dying.” you can guarantee that at least one student will go home in tears to tell his/her parents that Mrs. Blank is dying. It was time for a Parent-Teacher meeting anyway.

When his “Step Dad” tells him jokingly “P.U. you stink! Time to take a bath”, please understand that you will get a note home from school the following day informing you that your son was telling everyone he encountered “P.U. – You Stink!”
You can NEVER anticipate what will come out of their mouths!
While in line at a crowded grocery store, your child decides to recite a line from a favorite movie (something he does on a regular basis) – “Please don’t send me back! I like it here!” (Disney’s Summer Magic)

It is never too crowded a place to announce anything regarding bodily functions:
While shopping at the Disney Store, your 12 year is asked by his “Step Dad” if he would be able to wait a few minutes to go find a restroom. He proceeds to yell at the top of his lungs “POOP!” ……………I guess that would be a “no”.
My son wrote “baby” on his Christmas list to Santa.
Thinking he wanted another baby doll this year, I asked what kind he wanted
(I let that go).
Later I noticed he added “GIRL” to his list.
My Daughter came home today and told me that she had to do a writing prompt – the subject: What do you dislike?
Her opening sentence (a grabber for sure) was:
“Do you get hit everyday? I do, and I don’t like it.”
I could just envision the school calling DCF immediately!
All I could mutter was,…..OH MY GOD!………………….
Then she proceeded to tell me that she wrote about her Special Needs brother’s habit of hitting because he thinks it is funny, which was partially her fault because she would let him do it to make him laugh. She understands that he can not help it and she still loves him very much.

That, right there is the best way to end any post

Sunday, July 19, 2015

My Friend, My Favorite Family and her “Poppy” #1000speak

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Below is a post I wrote for #1000speak in April for that month’s topic “Nurturing”. I wrote about my good friend’s family. What occurred to me after reading my friend Alison’s Father’s Day tribute to her Poppy, was that this post was not only about nurturing but it was also a post about acceptance. What I neglected to mention in my original post, was the fact that Alison’s Poppy was white. Alison, her mother and brothers are black. I met Alison in elementary school and we became friends somewhere around the late 60’s/early 70’s. This was not the norm back in those days. I honestly don’t remember being surprised and if I was, it certainly did not last long enough for me to even remember or think about it.
When I read Alison’s post I realized that is was entirely possible that their road together as a family may have not been easy back in those days. They may have faced obstacles and backlash from others. It really never occurred to me. I loved them for them and I suppose I assumed that everyone else did as well…. It certainly seemed that way to me.
Alison’s Father’s Day Tribute :
"There was a man who gave his love to three children that were not his own. Though not of his own blood he shed blood, sweat and tears to make them feel loved despite not being their biological father. He was quite young when he took on this task but the age it didn’t matter. He stood up to the task until he went to be with the Lord. He dedicated his life to taking on the task of being a father. Not only did he become a father to these children but also loved their friends and treated them like family as well. Now when he became a father to these children, it was taboo because they were black and he was white.
I told this story for two reasons, one because what has been experienced recently in our country regarding racism and because I wanted to celebrate my Poppy,  a white man who loved three black children and their mother and didn’t care who knew it. I honor my Poppy because he showed me that it doesn’t matter if you’re black or white.
Racism isn’t dead- it has been flying under the radar and now has reared it’s ugly head again. Poppy, I thank you for showing me that we can live in harmony and true love for one another. You were a perfect example to me that it doesn’t matter if you’re black or white it is truly the character of your heart! RIP and I miss you and love you even more!!!!” – Alison
This family and the relationship my friend had with her “Poppy” was the inspiration for the post below. I knew I would repost this post someday and I am happy to repost it now with the addition of  her heartfelt  and loving words for the man that meant so much to her and her family.

Alison’s “Poppy”

My friend Alison and I met in elementary school. We became fast friends and remain friends to this day. I loved everything about her, including her family. I spent so much time there, I’m sure they were afraid I would never go home. Especially in the summer. In the summertime there was more time to get there and home (it was a hike) because it stayed light out longer and the rule of “getting home before the streetlights came on” was not as impossible to adhere to. (Seriously…. how does one know when the streetlights are going to go on until they are on?)
Alison had a stepfather, his name was Tom. I also have a stepfather. This was not as common back then in the late 60’s/early 70’s as it is today. Maybe it was, but in my little world, I thought I was the only one until I met Alison.
I was always so in awe of this family and a little bit envious as well. Okay….. very envious! I wanted to live there…..
Tom would pull up on his motorcycle everyday after work and my friend and her brothers would greet him – they were happy to see him. This was just alien to me. He was happy to see them too, every single day! I was just puzzled, but impressed. From the outside looking in, one could just see how much they loved each other. This was amazing to me. I will say it again – I was in awe.
This man married a woman with three children (she is pretty amazing herself). He raised them. He treated them like his own. He loved them like his own and they loved him right back, just as much.  Now, I am sure this happens  but this certainly was not my experience in having a stepfather, and my experiences were all I had. I didn’t know it was or could be different.
Even as a kid I recognized that he was one of those special people who you’d be lucky to have in your life. I just always thought he was truly amazing and I still do.
Alison and her family moved away when I was 16. We’ve kept in touch over the years and I just went to attend her mother’s birthday party a few weeks ago. Tom has since passed. Each year when I see Alison’s post on the anniversary of his death I take the opportunity to remind her just how lucky she was to have had this man in her life. I know that she knows this, I know… but I just have to tell her, every year.
Just a few days ago I noticed her anniversary post:
Seven years ago today one of the most important men in my life went on to be with the Lord. My Poppy. I miss you every day, remember you and Love you more as the days go by. I will keep your memory alive in me until I see you face to face! Until then rest in peace…all my love!”
I never got back to the post to tell her once again, how lucky she was
-and what a wonderful man he was
-and how much of an impact their whole family had on me
– how they taught me that blood does not make a family and that some families really do care about one another.
So I am now…….

“Every voice matters – together we’re stronger – let’s BE the Village.
Join the 1000 Voices Speak for Compassion group on Facebook
Add your link . This month’s topic is ACCEPTANCE”

Friday, July 17, 2015

Take it easy

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birdwatching DC’s best friend, BB is a big oldies fan and has been from the time he was very young – Elvis being THE ultimate favorite. I once asked his mother where this came from, he was definitely too young at the time to really know who Elvis was. She had no idea. His love for Elvis led him to the Beatles and oldies in general. He listens to the oldies station and the DJ’s, before the station changed format, would always take a phone call from BB.
DC is always open to do anything BB likes – they do have quite a lot in common to begin with, namely their love of musicals, but DC never really had much of an interest in concerts, other than the Wiggles (kill me now).

He has been to plenty though. Most were outdoors where we were free to move about.
6 years old -blondie-better-than-ezra-our-lady-peaceecho-and-the-bunnymen-mighty-mighty-bosstonesks-choice-local-h-moist-moby-rane
6 years old -blondie-better than ezra-our lady peace-echo and the bunnymen-mighty mighty bosstones k’s choice-local h-moby

BB’s love of the oldies opens up another door for DC, away from the realm of Disney. If BB wants to go, DC is open to it and will almost always end up having a good time. I am always on the lookout for oldies concerts. DC and BB have been to quite a few Beatles cover band concerts, one with an Elvis impersonator as the opening act. I never have to try to “relate” these concerts to anything for DC – BB likes it so that is good enough for him. Of course Elvis was easily relatable to Lilo and Stitch, but that was just a bonus. We’ve been to a “Happy Together” concert and even Chicago. BB of course loved all of them and DC really did enjoy himself too, even though he really did not know any of the music.

When my brother offered me Eagles tickets back in March for my birthday, BB was my first thought. Keeping it a secret from him for 3 months was not an easy task for BB’s mother. Much like DC, we can not tell BB about these events too far ahead of time. One of the last times we were planning on taking BB with us somewhere – he went snooping found it written in his mom’s calendar. He always seems to find out ahead of time – a true detective indeed. This time I told her to write it in as “Bird Watching”  (yes, I crack myself). That is exactly what she did……  

 We did actually manage to keep it a secret for possibly the first time ever!!!!!  When we came to pick him up, he still had no idea where he was going. Impressive!
And how did the boys do……………?

BB was certainly surprised and excited when he found out where he was going. He was a little bit overwhelmed by the crowds. I don’t think he was expecting quite that many people – The ‘Beatles’, Chicago and Happy Together shows were all at much smaller venues. At intermission while standing in the massive crowd, he asked me if this was what ‘the’ concert was like in 1971………. (sigh)…………..

I explained to him that I while I did not go to many concerts in 1971 because I was ELEVEN….. this is what a concert was like and is still like now. He had just never been to a large concert venue before. Because the Eagles were talking a lot about 1971 while going though their history, he had it in his head that all of these people attending were there as a reenactment of a 1971 concert. I don’t think he realized the amount of people who attend concerts in large venues.

IMG_0746DC found it necessary to nap during the “mellow” first part of the show. He caught his second wind for the second half and I do believe they both had a very good time – crowds, naps, bird-.watching and all.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Holy Inappropriate Conversation, Batman! – Stories from the Dental Chair

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I had a dental appointment last week. Years ago, I requested never to be scheduled with one particular hygienist. The first time I saw her, I left there feeling as if my mouth had been ripped apart. As it turned out, she has a child with autism. I made the mistake of telling her that DC also has autism. Mistake? Yes! Mistake! This was the most uncomfortable and painful appointment I have ever had! Painful – because the more she talked about her son the more aggressively she cleaned my teeth. Uncomfortable – because the stories she felt compelled to tell me about him were just unbelievably inappropriate (in my opinion) and very uncomfortable for me.

I have friends and we do feel relatively comfortable talking about our many issues with our children, but never, ever would I speak of these things with a stranger or here in this blog. Her stories went above and beyond anything I could even imagine. In general, I am usually willing to talk with anyone about autism. I am no expert and can only speak to DC’s autism, but I am always willing to talk about it if someone feels the need. It did not take long for me to realize that she was not looking for someone to talk to, she was just really looking for someone to shock and this conversation was not just for my benefit, it was for the benefit of the entire office.

When I arrived for my appointment last week I discovered that they had scheduled me with her again. I couldn’t ask them to switch because she was standing right there. She didn’t remember me, and I specifically did not mention DC…. but it didn’t matter – she had just gone through a divorce…….

I left there with my mouth torn to pieces.

This appointment and the memory of my first appointment with her reminded me of a post I wrote a few months back which was written about what I will share or not share. I am re-posting it below as a “summer rerun”. Everyone has different ideas about what they feel comfortable sharing, but there are some things that I, personally am not comfortable in sharing here – that’s just me. I am sure there are people that think that I share too much and that is fine too – I am comfortable right where I am..

What to share? That is the question…..

The answer….. for me, not everything.
A few days ago I came across this post from Diary of a Mom – online privacy – part a million. Coincidentally  I had just had not one but two similar conversations just last week.
Yes, I do write about my son DC. Whether he understands it or not, I do tell him that I write stories about him. I do tell him what I am writing about. I try very hard not to write about anything that might embarrass him even if I believe he will not or does not understand it. There are so many topics I will not write about.
Good Grief ! I was so on the fence about writing a story about toilet paper that it took me two days to hit “publish” and when I did finally publish, I had to disguise it as paper towels:
In a post a few months back, I wrote that I do not buy paper towels and I do not, but just for the sake of this post, let’s just say that I do…….
(you can see, I am over that now)
I find it much easier to explain autism, HIS autism by telling specific stories about how his mind works, the things he does or says, the many things he is obsessed with, his likes, his dislikes and some of the issues we face. At times I will use humor to tell a story because at times he is funny, the situations are funny! He knows he’s funny. I tell him he is funny. I may be laughing at the situation –  I am never laughing at him.

I have some very good friends, many of whom also have children with special needs. I am thankful for them. We are all somewhat in the same boat and even though autism is not the common diagnosis, we all seem to have many of the same issues. They are the people I can share the “Holy S#!T, how is this my life?” moments with, because at times we all just need to tell someone. They share with me as well. You really don’t want to be in the room when we are all together, trust me. We are able to discuss issues that I can only assume most NT parents do not and would not discuss with their friends (DC is my only child so, that is only an assumption on my part). Those conversations remain between us. They are not written about – ever.

Recently a few people suggested that stories about certain behaviors, “growing pains” and other such topics should become a part of this blog. They will not be…

I understand that people might look at this type of information as knowledge or what they may have to look forward to – I do, but there are plenty of other resources and blogs out there that will and do share this sort of information, some cringe-worthy (to me, maybe not to anyone else) and some handling the subject quite delicately but I don’t feel the need to do that here. I am not saying they are wrong. I am certainly not judging anyone – people have different views on the subject of sharing, this is just mine. It is not for me.

We have our good days, we have our bad days and I almost always learn something from the bad days. I may sometimes write about or mention the bad but not usually in specific detail.  I will just about always write about what we’ve learned or have been able to figure out from both the good and the bad. I hope I have not written anything that would embarrass him, I don’t think I have. Everyone’s perspective being different; maybe to some, I have. I do hope that in my almost two years of blogging you might by now have a small snapshot about DC, HIS autism, his triumphs, the progress he still continues to make, the way his mind works and most importantly that he is a happy guy who loves his life.

I’ll leave the rest to others…….

 (Here is another post from Autism-Mom along the same lines that has been published since; PROTECTING HIM ONLINE – be sure to give it a read.)

Friday, July 10, 2015

Hat Day

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Hat Day Today is DC’s first full day at camp. He has attended this camp since he was 5 years old. He loves it. Before he left the school system at age 21, he was able to attend 9 to 3 every day for 7 weeks each summer. Now that he has a “job”, he normally uses some of his allotted vacation time to attend for two weeks of the season.  He does and has always been able to attend the twice weekly after camp program.

He attended when he was at the camp full time and still attends now after work. Because we took an extra vacation this year, he was not able to take an extra two weeks off to attend camp as he usually does, so I opted for him to go one day a week on Friday in addition to the two “after camp” sessions that do not interfere with his work schedule or his time off. This works out well because I am off from work on Fridays for the summer and I don’t have to figure out and schedule how he will get there each day.

The camp has what they call “Special Days” (more about that in an upcoming ‘Everything is Related’ post) listed on the calendar. Because of DC’s schedule he has missed one of his favorites, Hat Day (or “silly hat day” as DC likes to call it) for the past 3 years. He still has every single construction paper award that he has ever won for his hats on Hat Day and he is very proud of them.
Today happened to be Hat Day. As soon as DC discovered that he would be at camp on Hat Day, it was all that I heard about. We went through his collection of silly hats and he chose the cheeseburger hat.

We arrived at camp and he got himself situated. Although the director and assistant director are aware of his seizure, I wanted to stress again the fact that I really believed it had to do with the heat and the all-around stress of the day we had that day. I also wanted to talk to his group leader personally.
We were a bit early so the staff was still in their morning meeting. DC decided that he had to use the restroom. He came right out and informed me that there was no toilet paper.
(for someone who was so uncomfortable writing a post about toilet paper that I had to use a code word – ‘paper towels’, I do get that it is odd that that I writing a post about it again)
I got him a big handful from the ladies room and he went back in, no problem…. or so I thought.

When he came out, he would not let go of the fact that there was not toilet paper in the men’s room, even though he didn’t need it any longer, it wasn’t there. I told him that I  would let the director know as soon as they were finished with their meeting – but he would just not calm down about it.
When the meeting was over he came with me – still ranting – to talk to the director. First I explained to her that what was going on right then was because there is no toilet paper in the rest room. She immediately called to one of her staff to replenish the supply. This did not do a thing to calm him down. It was too late. This coupled with his normal ‘arrival anxiety’ was too much and even when I showed him the new rolls, it didn’t matter, he was too far into this now. It went on for awhile.
When he finally did calm down about that, he move right into his normal routine of obsessing about me.

“I’m sorry, calm down now. I’m sorry. Not ‘crappy’ anymore “- (DC – speak “crabby”).
As many times that I have told him over the years that he has nothing to be sorry about (and as many times as I told him this morning),  this is what happens. If we are home together, this could and has gone on for hours. If I am dropping him off somewhere, I try to just get him calm enough so that I can leave, because if I am there he will continue to perseverate on me.

I was worried and having seizure flashbacks because it was hot and now he was upset, so I was afraid to leave when I normally would have. He finally did calm down to the point where I felt comfortable leaving – not to say I feel comfortable leaving him anywhere since the seizure, but as comfortable as I can be now-a-days.

As I was leaving he moved on to obsessing about whether I was going to come back and when I was going to pick him up. This is his regular obsession – I do not know why – I have never been so much as a minute late in picking him up anywhere, ever, but it has always been a thing with him.
Now that he had moved on to “Mom is coming back”,  his regular routine, I was sure it was safe to leave.

I hope his anxiety this morning does not ruin “Hat Day” for him. Fingers crossed that he comes home with that construction paper award today, because that will most certainly fix everything.
and later ……

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Going to the “Lie-ber-ary”

DC has support staff that comes to our house for a couple of hours each day. He has had this staff since somewhere around the age of 18. One or the other is there when he arrives home from his job and they stay until 5PM – a little bit after I get home from work. His staff is there of course because I am still at work when he gets home from his program but their specific purpose is support in life-skills and community activities.
Tuesday and Friday have been designated as “Lie-ber-ary” (DC-speak = Library) days with his staff. On Tuesdays he goes to the library in town with one aide and on Friday he goes to a library in the next town over with Mrs. H. These trips to the out of town library began a few years ago when our library was closed for renovations. They started going there “temporarily” but it has now become part of his permanent schedule.
Last Sunday he came to me with his library books and asked to go to the “Cole-cot Lie-ber-ary” on Monday with Mrs. H. (He must take out his library books the day before his scheduled library visit and put them on the kitchen table –  always. Even though the spot where he keeps the books are on the desk 3 steps away – they must be placed on the table the day before.) I was a little bit confused by this. He knows that Monday isn’t his library day – it wouldn’t matter to me if he wanted to change that schedule, but I knew that him changing his schedule voluntarily was highly unlikely. I asked him why he wanted to go on Monday, since he just took them out a few days before. He just stood there are stared at me.
“DC, why do you want to go tomorrow?”
” ‘Cole-cot lie-ber-ary’ with Mrs. H on Monday”
“Don’t you want to wait until Friday?”
Now he has starting to look panicked….
“DC, what’s wrong? You can go on Friday with Mrs. H”
“No! ‘Cole-cot lie-ber-ary’ with Mrs. H tomorrow!”
I was thinking that he was trying to get out of cleaning his room (Life-Skills – Monday) or worse… going for a walk, but then I realized that he was a step ahead of me in the planning of his week:
Friday was the 3rd of July. He had the day off from his program and I had the day off from work. This meant no Mrs. H that day and no Friday trip to the library.
I had never mentioned having the day off on Friday. I am not even sure that I had told him at this point that he was off as well. I’m sure he knew a holiday was coming and I suppose he heard or figured out that it was being observed on Friday.  Knowing it was a holiday, he figured out that he would not be going to his program, I would not be going to work, Mrs. H. would not be there that day and as it was a holiday, and it was possible that the library would be closed. He made all of those connections in his head and came up with his own plan to return the books that he had and to take out some new ones.
This may not seem like a big thing to some but I have to say I found it quite impressive…….
The books then took their place on the kitchen table in preparation for Monday.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Thunder and Lightening - Happy 4th!

2004 sparklers
I know that fireworks are at times a big issue for children and adults with autism. I just finished reading a blog from Autism-Mom on this very subject (give it a read if you have a minute).
This time of year is difficult for DC. It is not only Thunder and Lightening Season, but as we know, the firecrackers seem to begin exploding around the middle of June in anticipation of the 4th.  I generally spend these two or three weeks explaining to DC over and over again that the noise he is hearing is not astorm, it is just someone shooting off fireworks. He is okay with that. For a child (man) that just cannot stand a storm, he was always fine with fireworks. He actually really LOVES fireworks, he always has.
To look at him when the first few go off, one would think he is terrified. He nearly jumps out of his skin and covers his ears, even when he knows they’re coming, but then he laughs and after the first few the ear covering is ends and he is stimming away.
We are fortunate that we never really have to go anywhere to see a really great 4th of July fireworks display. Someone in town (and I still really haven’t determined who) puts on a really fabulous display every year. At one time there were two big displays, one earlier in the evening that we could see perfectly from the front of the house and the other larger display that we could see perfectly from the back of our house.
I never really know what night they will go off, until they start. Generally I forget all about them until they start. I guarantee you that whether it be tonight or tomorrow night, as soon as DC realizes that what he is hearing is not thunder we, like *Autism Hippie will be standing outside in our pajamas.
Maybe this year I will try to think ahead and remember not to get changed so early…….

 *(I can’t find it now but I read a status the other day from Autism Hippie about standing outside in their pajamas watching fireworks. It made me laugh because I realized that we are not the only ones out watching fireworks in our pajamas! Fortunately the front of the house fireworks are no more so at least we won’t be out in the street in our pajamas as in years past)

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

The Search Is ON!

Every once in a while Invisible Strings publishes a post listing the “search terms” that brought readers to his site. I do not know if this is a regular thing that he does, but I’m pretty sure I’ve seen more than one. His “search engine” posts are usually written to make a specific point (this post is not). I always find those posts interesting of course due to the point he is making but also because I love the fact that we are able to find these “search terms”.
I have often wondered how people found their way to my site. Of course there are the people who officially follow me and others I know read from twitter (and twittergoogle+, tumblr, facebookand the many other places this blog is posted and shared. But how does one just happen upon it? After a little bit of searching through my ‘stats’ page, I finally found the list of search terms. Some were pretty close to what I expected, some were interesting and others a bit surprising.
This is one of those posts that I put together and save to post later when we are away or when I am really busy and really don’t have the time to write. Like the “Blog Title Series” (Series? Yes…. there’s more), they are very often off topic or “fluff”.
I like fluff, sometimes fluff is fun.
Search terms between January and June 2015:
There are hundreds of “hits’ that are categorized under “unknown search terms” (so…. I guess THAT would “officially be my top  category :) ). I wish I could see what those terms were, but as they are unavailable to me, I’ll just go with what I CAN see.
I will begin with the list of individual, one-time searches that each brought one ‘hit’ to my page. In almost each case it is clear to me how my page came up in the results. But really, how many results would one have to scroll through to find my page by searching the word – “movie”? That is real determination……
“Autism Ravioli” was a puzzler for a minute but I am guessing the clicks went to “Progress with a side of Pasta” or “Please pass the garlic bread“.
(all searches listed have been copied and pasted exactly as they were entered into the search engine)
charity miles april fools contest
toy story transitions
those of us they never called,when choosing sides for basketball
james taylor and autism
autism ravioli
one step at a time speech
taking it a step at a time – autism
peter pan live coloring sheets
book store blues
was buddy holly autistic
good costumes for the song we go together
autistic child pressing phone buttons in 22 months
top blogs autism blog ranking
Next we have two or more searches for the same or close to the same topic. I believe at this point if anyone were to searchband-aids and autism it would be difficult NOT to find my page.
kaleb-moon robinson
kaleb moon-robinson
mad men a thing like that
mad men “a thing like that”
hershey park autism 2015
dollywood autism                                {amusement parks
dollywood autism adult
bandaid on kid
has a child with autism ever become obsessed with bandaids
child obsession with bandaids
were band aids based on stickers
Next we move on to weather. This is absolutely understandable. I am sure I write about DC’s storm issues as much if not more than his band-aid obsession……
2011 halloween nor’easter storm alfred
power outages autism upset
thunder and autism power outage change
upset by power outage autism
afraid of power outages autism
power outages autism
The biggest surprise for me here is that THE most popular search terms(s) that brought people to my blog had nothing to do with autism at all. The largest set of terms that brought people to me – were terms having something to do with Leonard Nimoy or Star Trek!

logic is the first step to wisdom
logic is the beginning of wisdom
how wisdom related to light in logic
mr spock logic is the beginning of wisdom not the end
leonard nimoy autisim
logic is the beginning of wisdom not the end
spock quotes logic is the beginning of wisdom not the end
of my friend i can only say this: of all the souls that i met on my travels, his was the most… human.”
what is it like to meet william shatner photo op
wisdom is not end
logic is just the beginning of wisdom, not the end”.
I can not say that this does not make me very happy!!!!
~”That is a human emotion, Doctor, with which I am totally unfamiliar. How could I be “unhappy?”~ Mr. Spock – ep. I, Mudd

(Yes, I do understand that the results are a bit skewed due to the “unknown search terms” – so don’t rain on my parade)