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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Five Things I HATE About The Stand (the movie, not the book)

I was lucky enough to have power during Frankenstormicane Sandy (other than a couple of blips), but it was raining a monsoon with 50mph winds so I was housebound for quite a stretch there. I decided to re-watch "The Stand" on Netflix, since I'm re-reading it for about the bazillionth time (I got the extended edition on my Kindle - if you haven't read it, you really should).

I realize this was originally a mini-series, which puts it in an entirely different realm than a major motion picture, but overall, I like it. I just wish they'd go back and re-make it, changing a few things. Before I get to those, let me tell you what I wouldn't change:

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The Great Post-Sandy Update

Just a quick shout out to let all of you know that we came through the storm just fine. The power blipped a couple of times but stayed on, the rain is spotty now (my backyard is a lake, though!) and it's still pretty windy. We're snug and warm after our family room campout last night.

Hope all of you in Sandy's path are safe as well!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Once Upon A Time - Season 2, Episode 5 - A Last And First Meeting

Tonight we rejoin Mulan and company only to find their previous camp in shambles with dead bodies everywhere - all of whom have had their hearts ripped out, courtesy of Cora.

Emma finds someone under a pile of rubble, and we see that ungodly handsome face again...hellooooo Captain Hook! Even filthy and bedraggled, he's eye-candy. And look at him, all cowardly and pathetic and cute. Awwww.

How blue can one man's eyes be? Honestly?

Meanwhile, in Storybrook, Dr. Whale tells David they need to talk and David responds by popping him in the face for sleeping with his wife. Whale wants to know if the rumors are true - portals can possibly be opened and the other realms may still exist. David confirms and Whale answers with "All the lands?"


Friday, October 26, 2012

I Need A Disposable House

I have finally figured out how I'm going to make my millions. I am going to invent a disposable house. Maybe not the structure, mind you - just most of the stuff in it.

I want carpets I can peel up and throw away after they get riddled with dropped yogurt, spilled juice, magic marker and cat barf.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

I'm Mom. I'm Not Allowed To Be Sad

I've been having a rough week. There's been a big convergence of stuff going on, mostly financial, and mostly really serious. On top of that, I'm battling a minor health issue that's dragging me down, and I'm feeling more than a bit overwhelmed by it all. I desperately need to crawl into bed and have a really good cry.

I can't, though.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Just A Little Info About My Other Blog

For those of you who follow my weight loss blog,, you've probably noticed that it's down right now.

There was a bit of a snafu with an old credit card number when it came time to re-register the domain, and when I went in to correct, I got locked out somehow. I'm working with Google and my domain registrant on the problem and should have it back up and running again shortly.

Sorry for the drama. I promise, I'll stay fat till I can blog about how fat I am again.

Monday, October 22, 2012

My Name Is Ellie, And I Have A Problem

There comes a time in your life when you have to face the truth about yourself. This weekend, I had to do just that.

I am a mail-hoarder.

You heard me. A mail hoarder (which is quite different from a Male Hoarder, which doesn't sound like a bad deal at all).

I was deep-cleaning my house, purging rooms of unwanted stuffage, when I realized I have bags and bags (literally!) of mail. It was frightening in it's proportions, believe me.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Once Upon A Time - Season 2, Episode 4: Pirates Ahoy! (Oh Mercy, Mercy Me...)

We open this episode with Rumple giving Belle a beautiful necklace. She thanks him for changing for her. Then Leroy comes into the store demanding his axe and questions how Belle could be with such a monster. Rumple goes nuts and chokes the hell out of Leroy and we discover it's all just a movie clich̩ dream РBelle's to be specific.

She sneaks down to Rumple's basement lair and finds him with his Star Wars action figurines spinning gold and using it for a magic potion.

Flashback to old Rumple back in the Enchanted Forest before he turned scaly, and he's home to find Baelfire all alone. He heads to the local tavern and discovers Milah with an ungodly handsome man who puts every other man at the table to shame. She's laughing and gambling and obviously having the time of her life, and when Rumple pitifully asks her to come home, she mercilessly mocks him for being the village coward. I hate her instantly. When she sees Bae hanging on his father's coat, she leaves, and yup...I hate her more. Poor kid.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

The Day I Was Dreading Is A Very Good Day Indeed

We had David's IEP meeting today. For those of you with neurotypical kids, an IEP is an education program that spells out exactly what David will be getting in school in the way of supportive services. This year, he'll still receive speech therapy, occupational therapy, and daily time with a learning support specialist, just like all his previous school years. There was one big difference to the plan this year, though.

They recommended that David's personal aide be "phased out".

When I read the first draft of the IEP, I have to admit I hyperventilated a bit. Taking his aide away! They can't do that! He only has her half a day as it is, and she's there to redirect him and keep him on task, because like most children on the autism spectrum, David's attention isn't always where it should be.

Taking his aide away. Taking. His aide. Away.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Double Cheezits: Just One Of The Many Unforgiveable Mom Sins That Can Be Laid At My Feet

I was in a bit of a rush this morning. For whatever reason, the alarm didn't go off like it should (or maybe it did and my hand hit the snooze independently of my brain, I'm not sure) and we were running late. Add to that the stress of a semi-annual dental appointment for the kids and me forgetting it was trash day and the trucks could show up any minute, and we were in a bit of a whirl.

I was getting ready to pack my son's lunch, reaching automatically for the small, plastic snack container he keeps in his backpack so I could stock that, too, while I was at it.

That's when it happened. That's when I completely lost my mind.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Stuff Autism Says: In The Shower

The scene:  David is taking his evening shower. He calls out for me, and I open the sliding door to find him - staring straight down.

Me: What do you need, sweetie?

David: Mom, I don't want to be tiny down there.

(I am completely taken aback. What. The. Heck.)

Me: Uh, what did you say?

David: I don't want to be tiny down there. Don't make me be tiny!

(I somehow resist the urge to make a snarky remark about genetics and my ex-husband, and instead opt for the best way to get to the source of this.)

Me: Why are you saying that, sweetie?

David: Because you might shoot me with the shrink-ray and make me tiny and I will go down the drain. Like in that movie.

As usual, I got tossed from the raft into the rapids of David's stream-of-consciousness!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Welcome To Autism, It's Not Always Fair

When my husband left and I realized I had to go it alone in this parenting thing, I made a vow that my kids and I would have fun together, as much as possible. We'd go on outings, we'd take hikes, have movie nights, I'd ignore the dishes and step over the laundry and just go enjoy my kids' childhood as much as possible.

Those are nice dreams, aren't they? And for the most part, we do that. Being a single Mom is hard on the finances, so many of our planned-for outings have been scaled back a bit. We've had to learn to substitute creativity for cash, but it comes out pretty good. 

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Once Upon A Time - Season 2, Episode 3: BadAssery All Around

Ooooooh! Leviathan.

This evening, we begin with what looks like a war council, and Snow, Charming and Red are trying to decide what to do about King George. He has a new general who seems to be nigh unstoppable and goes by the shiver-enducing moniker of Leviathan. Oooooh.

They get attacked by George's army, and Charming sends Snow to safety at his mother's house (or so he thinks) only to have her run smack guessed it! Leviathan. She whispers his name in awe and he yanks off his helmet, thoroughly irritated.

"Leviathan?" he says. "That's what they're calling me? It's Lancelot!"

Friday, October 12, 2012

Waiting For The Work Around - And The Day That Autism Is 'No Big Deal'

When my David was first diagnosed, the word "autism" was a terrifying thing. It was enormous. Huge. This incredibly astronomical obstacle that was keeping my child from being who he really was. It must be cured! He must not be autistic as soon as possible!!

Right. Good luck with that.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Dreamworks Studios Helping To Fund Movie Industry's Vocational School For Students With Autism

Exceptional Minds is a school and working studio within the movie industry for young adults on the autism spectrum. This week, Dreamworks Studios made a significant donation to the program.

“We were incredibly impressed with the passion and work of the students at Exceptional Minds and continue to be inspired by the work they are doing," comments Dina Strada, the Manager of Events and Communications for DreamWorks.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Once Upon A Time - Season 2 Episode 2 Recap: Dual Identities, Dual Worlds

We begin tonight's episode at the town line with the dwarves, who spray paint the border to test out whether or not they can cross the line without anything bad happening. They draw straws and poor Sneezy loses. He steps over the town line and promptly forgets everything but his cursed memories.

Meanwhile, the center of town looks like a war zone. When the curse broke, it apparently came through like a tornado, overturning cars and creating all kinds of chaos. We pan through town and see they've set up a disaster center of sorts, trying to reunite families.

On the other side of town, David shows up at Regina's house, and he wants information about Jefferson's hat. He lets her know that he knows that her magic is iffy, so she'd better work with him because she's only alive because Henry wants her that way. He also expresses his misgivings about her as a mother and Regina sasses back:

"Forgive me if I won't listen to a childcare lecture from a man who put his daughter in a box and shipped her to Maine."

God, I love sassy Regina. She lets David know that he's treading on thin ice.

"I don't have magic and I don't have my son. When I get one, I get the other," she warns.
"If you have to use magic to get him, you don't really have him," David retorts.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

The No-Good, Very Bad, Terrible, Awful Day

I was having a bad day last week, and it showed. I was wandering around the house after work, morose and uncommunicative as I put dinner together for the kids. Anna headed off to cheerleading practice and David and I settled in to work on his homework.

"Mom, are you happy with me?" He asked, as I spread the papers out on the table.

I was taken aback. Was my bad mood that apparent? How awful.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

After An Unthinkable Tragedy: Learning About Grace and Forgiveness From My Amish Neighbors

On October 2, 2006, we experienced a local tragedy that was just monstrous in its proportions. The West Nickel Mines tragedy rocked not just a tiny Amish community, but the nation as well.

On that morning, a man walked into an Amish schoolhouse in West Nickel Mines, Lancaster County, PA, taking ten young girls hostage. He shot them all execution-style, killing five and seriously wounding the others before he turned the gun on himself and ended his own life.