Beyond Shadows and Safety Nets: Learning as a Parent

When i asked my son for feedback on myHeartland anthology stories, Boom gave me some helpful advice, but what i remember is the comment that it wasn't what he was expecting to find with that title.

Almost Wordless Wednesday: New Year's Eve Reflection

  You don't reach a certain age without "What ifs."
  Max and i were able to attend a Christmas eve service.  It was at 4:30pm whereas most of them are when are family gets together, and yes, he enjoyed it & did GREAT.
  Of course, music was prominently featured, and there was a flute.
  i can never hear a flute without feeling sad about my lack of musical gift or talents. 
  At  the nursing home caroling, i am the only one who knows all the words without the book. i'm also the only one who can't carry the tune.
  The flute episode was particularly painful: 3 months in which a chld  only a year older tried to teach me what she had learned the year before, during which i never made a single sound (not sure where the band director figured in this- just up front directing).
  And that's just one dream deferred.
Amy Grant Official Music: All I Ever Have to Be is What You Made Me
  i rather think this song was written for a graduation or maybe some great failure, but it works for a new year too.  i've found it comforting and encouraging from the time i first encountered it, and still do.

Sifting the Spambox Again

Sometimes i wonder about ya'll, my audience. . . .

Seldom do i receive any comments that don't go into the spambox.

They all do seem to come from real people, and it also seems to help if i publish them like this.
These comments certainly

Holiday and Autism Links for You

Just a couple of links today.  Hope you will find them informative, useful,  and interesting!

Huffington Post: The Hardest Part of Autism
Holidays with Autism
 The "Holidays" link is from the Indiana Resource Center for Autism.  If you haven't been there before, you might also want to check out their homepage and other articles, including a series by Temple Grandin!

Quick & Easy Gift Suggestion

  Have you noticed how gorgeous scrapbooking papers are?  i was thinking you could seriously purchase one and simply frame it, or maybe add memorabilia for your recipient.
  Both the papers and suitable sized frames are widely available these days  -check big box stores and local hobby shops; my screen shot is from an online store having a going out of business sale.
  i'll miss you, Tropical!

Almost Wordless Wednesday: Different World

It's hard to believe that at age 9 Max enjoyed climbing trees.
It's hard to believe that our yard was ever this green, our old apple tree ever this profuse in blooms.
i think Max lost interest in climbing the day his cousin showed him how to safely choose a good foothold.
Now Max makes very plain that his life's goal is to lay on the couch watching TV.
Sure sounds nice.  But we can't afford to let that be anything other than relaxation time.

It's Here!

In process this entire year, more if you count the writing time before the anthology began to be compiled, it's finally available.
Want to try it first?  Our fearless leader has compiled an excerpt of some of the fiction storiess; another group member has set up a site where you can do just that

Pilling Puppers

  A quick Google search shows "about 10,700 results" for that  only-funny-if-it's-not-you story about giving a cat a pill.
  The best ones end with a line about how to give a pill to your dog: wrap it in the dog's favorite food.
        Or any food.
              Or just toss it.
  Puppers has usually been like that, until

Sign up Day

  Today is sign-up day for next year's insurance plan at MyGuy's place of employment.
  i had just put the footrest up on the recliner & prepared to start my project last night when he politely asked me if we could talk more about it.
  "Is Max going to be on our insurance plan this year?"

Wordless Wednesday: My Favorite Max-Scrapbook Page

  While this was a team project, it was more Max's work than a lot of pages we've made together. 
  At first i really didn't like this one.  Then i understood what he was trying to accomplish here:

A Word About The Cameras

My current camera: Nikon's discontued P80, which was at the top of its middle line of cameras

   My family has always been a picture taking family.

For Want of a Med. . . .

  i have gotten good at editing out traffic in the photos.  It looks like we don't have any, doesn't it?
  That would, of course, be a lie.  i just don't like to look at other people's cars in my photos.
  This story is about very real traffic.

A Phone Survey, Very Short

  It's that time of year again: political surveys leading to the fall elections.  i got one of those calls yesterday afternoon.

Strange Photo Edit

  i liked the view in my mirror as i backed into my parkplatz (German/English combination; my own as far as i know), so i snapped it with my cellphone

Paying for Speech: Insurance Denied

  All that time & hassle we had to unload Max's Disney stock to spend down for Medicaid eligibility...
  Then only a few months after we made it happen, it was no longer necessary to do that.
  i've told you all along it was a small amount of stock.
  This week we learned that those six sessions of speech therapy have eaten through all the proceeds from stock sale, which we put into an Arc II Trust.
  At least it was here for Max.  But he's still benefitting from the speech.  Are we going to continue to be able to provide it?

Learning In School & Beyond: Part 2: Types of Classes, and Tests for Course Credit (AP, CLEP)

Continuing the discussion of  Learning In School & Beyond: Part  1 :

  In discussing the homework papers with Max, it seemed appropriate to share this with him:
Boom points out that the idea about the parking ticket came from a teacher.  He himself actually never evperienced this.
   Our family are great believers in the concept of testing out.  i gained an entire semester of college credit via testing.  and Boom took 5 AP courses. 

One Year Speech Eval

  Last week Institutional Speech Therapist gave Max his one year evaluation.

Cool Stuff to Share

  Surprising news: adults have autism, too. It's not just a childhood disorder, and there are things the average person can do to help maximize an autistic individual's development.
  You can find some cool images here which were made for sharing on Facebook or whereever. 
  Respect, peace & quiet, human rights, work, for all?  Yeah, those could help.