Life With A Side Of Autism

LIFE WITH A SIDE OF AUTISM

Friday, September 30, 2016

Enacting Radio Silence Today


Sorry guys, got a book to write.
No, wait...I'm not sorry about that!
But I am kid-free all weekend and determined to
get this last round of edits done. So no blog today
and lots of writing, writing, writing all weekend.

See Ya Monday!


Thursday, September 29, 2016

Worth It On The Web: 5 Sites Worth Your Notice


You should know by now that I am a complete and utter internet fiend. I'm online most of the hours of any given day (I know, I know...) and I've amassed a large collection of really interesting places online that I've visited. Here are a few for your perusal:

1. Want to know just how old you are, really? I mean, at a level you've never had to think about before? Then click here.

2. If that made you feel bad, check out the Feline Rescue Center Kitty Cam! You can't be in a bad mood watching kitties.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Mostly Wordless Wednesday: Unfriended For Good





We haven't been face to face in years
In these days of technology and social media
We don't have to be anymore
And maybe that computer screen
Makes you feel safe to spew your hate
In this election season
With words like ni**er and bitch
And the ironic use of the word "pray"
In that same sentence
You're unfriended now 
Because you don't have a damn thing to say
That I'll ever want to hear
But I will say this to you:
With hate like that, you're not much of a friend to lose
Not a friend to the country you so claim to love
And certainly not a friend to yourself
Letting that ugliness take root, grow and flourish
I pity you
But not enough to put up with you anymore
Even through a computer screen

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

How Star Trek Helped Me Explain The Way My Autistic Son Communicates


I had the supreme pleasure of hanging out with an old college friend (not that I'm calling you old, Shawna....we're just old friends. And I promise to stop saying "old"). I was trying to explain to her the way that my son speaks,  with repetitive phrases and chunks of movie dialogue. 

The movie dialogue is often used contextually, but unless you know exactly which movie he's referencing, and how he's tying that into whatever he's trying to get across, it can seem really odd. "It's like Darmok and Jalad at Tanagra," I told her, knowing that Shawna is as big of a geek as I am and would instantly know that reference.

Monday, September 26, 2016

The Heartbreaking Post I Read Last Night



I'm sharing this Facebook post today because it needs to be shared, as many times as we can share it.

The post, written by a man named Bob Cornelius, begins:

"For those of you who don't know, my youngest son, Christopher, is on the autistic spectrum. I went to his back to school night on Thursday and took a picture of one of his projects displayed on the wall, one of many cute little cards that all the kids in his class had filled out. It asked him to list his favorite foods, sport, TV shows etc.

I took the picture hurriedly, and didn't notice all the answers he had filled out at that time. It was only after I got home that something stood out upon closer review."

Once Upon A Time – Season 6, Episode 1 Recap: Saviors And Villains


We begin tonight with the iconic opening of thundering hoofbeats as a horse races across the desert, and the smartly generic, “Many Years Ago…” except this horse is being chased by a flying carpet. The rider dismounts at a house to beg a savior for help, but it’s too late.

The carpet has landed and in strolls Jafar, portrayed by Oded Fehr, one of the members of my personal ridiculously oversexed fantasy harem. He's deliciously oily and condescending.

61l

Friday, September 23, 2016

Fun On A Friday: All Signs Point To STUPID





Happy Friday and welcome to a very special edition of Friday signs. In this week's episode, we're going to concentrate on signs made for and by morons. This is quite a lengthy list, so let's get started:

Well, DUH.
Thanks, I'll try to remember that.


Thursday, September 22, 2016

Temple Grandin Has A New Book - "The Loving Push"



Once again, a big thank you to reader Janice, for alerting me to Dr. Temple Grandin's latest book, "The Loving Push."

Dr. Grandin, if you're unaware or not part of the autism community, is on the spectrum herself, and renowned for developing key strategies in animal science. She is also a champion of numerous autism-related initiatives. Her biography was made into a major motion picture just a few years ago.

In her latest book, Dr. Grandin discusses the need and the benefit of pushing an autistic child outside their normal comfort zone (gently, of course), and why that can make such a difference in their lives.
  
I cannot agree with this enough. 

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Mostly Wordless Wednesday: The Adventurer

First day of fall
After a summer of adventure
She ziplined in Costa Rica
She camped the woods of Pennsylvania
She rode rollercoasters and walked through history in Virginia
She bodysurfed some killer waves in Maryland
She sledded white sand and walked through ancient pueblos in New Mexico
She hung out with friends
She slept in every chance she got
She put off her summer homework until the night before school began
Because she was too busy having a summer
And living it large
Now we settle in with our sweaters and leggins
Our pumpkin spice and hot apple cider
Taking a breath and charging up
Next summer will be here before we know it
And she'll be off
And loving it

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

I Let My Son Say A Swear Word

["A Christmas Story" courtesy of Warner Bros.]


Yep, you read that right. I let my son say a swear word. I am mother of the freakin' year, here.

Here's the story:

Yesterday morning, it was raining a monsoon, and I was working from home anyway due to an appointment later in the day, so I decided to play benevolent mom and allow them a few more minutes of precious sleep (and spare them a soggy walk to the bus stop) by driving them to school.

Monday, September 19, 2016

The Cause Cafe Brews Up Opportunities For Those With Special Needs



The Cause Cafe was started by Stacey Wohl and her daughter, Brittney and son, Logan (who are both on the autism spectrum) as a means to expand the employment opportunities for people with special needs. The cafe is open for breakfast and lunch, and employs both typical and young adults with special needs in an inclusive setting . Check out their story:



And if you're ever in the Long Island area, stop in! The food looks delicious and the cause is more than worthwhile! You can find more information on their Facebook page and you can buy their coffee directly on their website.

Friday, September 16, 2016

Fun On A Friday: Presented Without Comment


Every so often in my internet travels, I come across a picture that needs no explanation (like the one above) or a video that defies all logical means of definition. I've kept a file of them, and today I'm happy to give you, "Presented Without Comment."

Enjoy!


Thursday, September 15, 2016

Put On Your Dancing Shoes And Check Out These Unique Dance Videos!


I love a good dance number, and I especially like them when they're a little out of the ordinary. So today I'm going to share a few that I think really show some creativity!

We'll start with the K-Pop band "Speed" and their use of heelies!!




And speaking of dancing on wheels - this is far from a new thing. Check out Gene Kelly, doing it old school in the movie "It's Always Fair Weather":

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Mostly Wordless Wednesday: With A Little Help From My Friends


Yesterday was a rough day.
A rough, rough day.
The story would take too long to tell
And really, there's not much to be done
Nothing that can be easily or readily fixed
Just borne
Gotten through
And my friends, as always, lined up to get me through
My umbrellas in the deluge
As I slog through the mud
The sun will shine again, they remind me
And I nestle into their warmth
As I ride out the storm
 

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Netflix Nuggets: Check Out "The Irish Pub!"



Presenting my new weekly feature: Netflix Nuggets!

As I've no doubt mentioned before, I have a rather unhealthy need to binge-watch Netflix. This is in part due to the fact that I don't have cable (good riddance!) and I'm alone every other weekend and have a rather pathetic social life.

Ahem.

Anyway, Netflix is my buddy, and as such, we've gotten close enough for me to learn many of its hidden secrets. My go-to category for interesting stuff is the Documentary category. You never know what you might find!

Which brings me to this little gem: The Irish Pub.


Monday, September 12, 2016

Could A Fidget Cube Help Your Autistic (Or Neurotypical) Child?



I want to thank those of you who forwarded this link on to me because this is a simply outstanding idea! This glorious invention is the Fidget Cube, and right now, there's a kickstarter funding program in place for its development.

Using fidgeting to channel nervous or "stim" impulses is nothing new in the autism community. My son was always given a Koosh ball to hold during storytime in school, and it made a huge difference for him. He was much more able to focus on the work at hand when all that nervous energy had someplace to go.

Friday, September 9, 2016

It's Friday! How About A Steaming Dish Of NOPE


Welcome to the almost-weekend....and let me tell you, I can use one. Got a new car this week. Got a list of revisions from my editor for my 2nd YA book, got two stir-crazy kids who will ensure that I won't get much done on that, and I have a yard that needs to be nuked from space for public safety.

Maybe I don't need a weekend after all. I mean, if I'm at work, I can ignore all that. Right? Right?

Anyway, enough about me. Here's a whole bunch of things that embody the word NOPE.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

5 People Who Built Awesome Stuff That Your Kids Would Kill To Have



Today we're going to see the work of very talented people who can build stuff that makes kids squeal with joy. I could only wish for a tenth of this creativity. For instance....

Ever feel like building a rollercoaster for your kids?


This guy shows you just how it's done! Check out the picture gallery here.


Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Mostly Wordless Wednesday: Acting On Impulse




Mom, let's do it, she said. We've got to!
We were out, just the two of us, a girl's night out
And holy cow, was that a lot of chocolate
We probably shouldn't have
But we totally did


Tuesday, September 6, 2016

High School Is "The Best Years Of Your Life?" Are You Kidding Me??


When I was in my junior year of high school, we had some motivational speaker come and talk to us in a school assembly - I think he may have been a comedian, but nobody you'd remember. He was somewhat funny and mouthed a lot of platitudes about our whole lives in front of us and how full of promise we all were....yeah, yeah, yeah. We got out of class for this so whatever.

Anyway, he ended his speech by telling us to cherish every moment because these high school days were "the best days of our lives."

I remember turning to my friends and we all had the same looks on our faces. It was a look that said: "Are you kidding me? This is as good as it gets?"

Friday, September 2, 2016

I Saw A SIgn....That It Was Friday!!!

Looks like somebody's not big on customer service...
It's Friday, folks! And not just any Friday...here in the states, it's a Friday before a three-day weekend, which makes it an awfully good Friday!

So without any further ado....let's see who's posting what to keep us amused!

Good to know.


Thursday, September 1, 2016

New Mexico Diary: Pueblos And Pine Trees And Pals


Our last few days in The Land of Enchantment took place in Albuquerque - mainly because there's a lot to see there, too, but also because a whole lot of my college buddies seemed to land there. One of the things I really wanted to take the kids to see was a Pueblo.

At first I looked into Acoma Sky City and Jemez Pueblo, both of which have their draws. Acoma is supposed to be breathtaking, but it is pricey, and unfortunately, we had overspent a lot on this trip already. Jemez was a less-expensive option and also features the option of Jemez Springs (natural hot springs) along with some great hiking, but the Pueblo is only open to the public on Feast Days - and we weren't there at the right time.

Instead, we took the $5 option (and the kids were free!) at Coronado State Historic Site.


Located just 20-25 minutes from downtown Albuquerque, Coronado is the site of an archaelogical dig on the Kuaua Pueblo. The area (located right along the Rio Grande, pictured at the top of this post) has been occupied for two millenia, first by the Anasazi, then the Tiwa people.