Muffins For Mommy’s Peace Of Mind (Recipe)

Continuing our woes of the feeding issue variety, I have been so exhausted at feeding my Bug. She eats like a teenage boy, but always the same foods. She is very set in her ways and it will take a miracle to change that.

So in my quest to keep her healthy, I have resorted to hiding foods in foods. I know, I know, that isn’t a good way to do it. I know. And I don’t believe in hiding foods, they should build a relationship with the food.

BUT, you knew there would be a but didn’t you? But, I have tried and tried everything. she has had encounters with just one of the foods we have introduced hundreds of times. Hundreds. Not kidding. And her responses to that one particular food (carrots, in this case) has gotten better. She has gone from screaming and having a meltdown if she sees it, barely letting mommy and daddy eating it, to just refusing to acknowledge it, or smelling it and saying bleh, or flinging it far enough away from her that she will relax enough to eat her preferred food.

I’m tired.

Moming is already difficult, but I have a kiddo who eats NO fruit or veg in its original form. She will drink a strawberry smoothie, but won’t eat a strawberry. She loves banana cloud cookies, won’t touch a banana. And don’t even get me started on rice! She will eat rice, not any that I’ve ever made, just the rice from 2 Mexican restaurants. I have even gotten the recipe from one of them! (its a small town and I bribed them with cake) and still she won’t eat rice from anywhere but those two places. WHY?!

So in my desperation I have learned ways to supplement her growing body with nutrients she isn’t getting from her incredibly limited diet (granted, not as limited as others I personally know, but compared to Six, it’s very limited). And thanks to plant-based dietitian Auntie Fred, we have a direction to go with this.

I grind up Dr. Fuhrman’s Pixie Vites into our whole grain pancake mix that also has peanut butter powder and flax meal in its already whole grain mix, I sneak flax meal into her cereal and call it cereal dust, I make banana cloud cookies that are literally 4 ingredients and are so fluffy and yummy, I make sweet potato smoothies, I get her pure green juice from our local health food store (yup she will drink orange and green and pink smoothies but refuses to try any actual foods that color….if I knew why I’d tell ya!).

So I have had another trick up my sleeve, besides the beet cookies and smoothies, I ALWAYS have a stockpile of muffins in my freezer. Some days she eats half a dozen of them, sometimes she just wants one. But almost every single day for the last three-ish years she has had these muffins.

I try to rotate them, but her favorites as of the last six months have been banana chocolate chip, and carrot-apple-zucchini muffins.

I know I got the original recipe for the carrot-apple-zucchini muffins from someone online, and I would love to give credit where credit is due….however, I no longer have the original recipe and I have changed so much I cannot reverse-search it. So one day when I come across it again, I will give credit to my inspiration for this amazing recipe that could very well be the reason Bug is not anemic like mommy.

Bug’s Carrot, Apple, and Zucchini Muffins (Vegan)

1 1/2 tablespoon flax meal mixed with 4 1/2 tbsp warm water, set aside for 5 minutes

1/4 cup applesauce

1 over ripe banana, mashed up well

1/4 cup spun honey (spun honey is the best IMHO, but regular clover honey will work fine)

2 granny smith or pink lady apples, peeled and cored. grate one fine and one regular on a box grater. Squish out as much of the juice from them as you can.

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 cup soy milk

3 small carrots, grated finely (about 1/2 cup…I rarely measure exactly anymore, I make them so much!)

1 small zucchini, grated and squish out as much of the juice from them as you can (about one loose cup).

2/3 cup old fashioned or rolled oats

1/2 cup almond meal

2+ cups flour (I use a combination of unbleached flour and whole wheat pastry flour)

  1. Preheat your oven to 375 and grease or line a (jumbo) muffin tin. I use a ceramic muffin tin that has larger muffin cups than a standard tin.
  2. Mix up your flax and water and let that set out.
  3. Grate your apples and carrots and zuke, remember to squish out as much juice as you can, set them all aside for a minute.
  4. Combine the dry ingredients brown sugar, baking soda, cinnamon, oats, flour and almond meal in a small bowl and set aside.
  5. In a bowl with a hand beater or a stand mixer, combine flax/water mixture, applesauce, honey and soy milk and mix on a low speed till everything is nice and combined evenly.
  6. Slowly add in the dry mixture and about halfway through this add your apples, carrots and zuke. Then add the rest of the dry. Don’t over mix though, mix till there is no more dry bits showing and then stop!
  7. Fill up your muffin tins…I can’t really tell you how many this makes because it depends on the apples/carrots/zuke you use and the size of the tin and if you had to add more/less flour than me, so fill up as many muffin cups as you can and bake for around 20 minutes, or till a toothpick inserted in the center of one of them comes out clean.

These muffins freeze great and are amazing served warm with a little bit of (Earth Balance) butter and some (Bradshaw’s) spun honey.

I have five gallon ziploc bags in my freezer from gwama’s 2016 zucchini harvest so I am able to make this year -round with ingredients I know and trust. I LOVE that Bug loves these so much, I love them too…how do you think I know they are best served warm with butter and honey? Ha!

So when Bug asks for a muffin, I will happily defrost one or six for her, but I will still feel a tinge of guilt for hiding foods that I desperately want her to eat by themselves.

Progress is progress though, I have to remind myself of a few years ago when we had to hide the bananas because the sight of them in our house would cause a level-5 meltdown, now she will go and get them when we are shopping, but still won’t even lick one.

I’m tired.


Picky Eating And Us

Food has become a very prominent theme in our lives. We have to make sure they have eaten before we go out and do something, we have to have snacks in the car, in my purse, stashed at gwama’s house for just in case. We have to keep track of the foods Bug has eaten, what I want her to eat, how many times she has been in contact with that food, what she has done with that food; has she smelled it, touched it, licked it, kissed it??

Oh my good golly gosh. Food is exhausting. My hubby is a picky eater as well. He is one step away from having his food on separate plates, he hates soups and casseroles, and almost anything where foods are combined en mass. Six and I have picky tendencies but will eat a much broader range of foods than daddy and Bug do.

We do what works is a very literal phrase at our house. We do what works not only for homeschool, autism, and family, but for mealtimes as well. But lately it hasn’t been working.

We need to change something. Mealtimes just aren’t working and I am at a loss at how to make it work again. I have been getting sick because we all need to be eating the same foods at dinner (it’s a feeding therapy thing), and yes we add in things Bug won’t eat or that daddy won’t eat, but it is really hard. There are 5 meals that everyone will eat with no substitutions or additions. Five. How often can YOU have the same five meals and not get sick of them?

Two years is apparently my limit.

I started taking our feeding issues into our own hands about two years ago. I googled EVERYTHING I could possibly thing of, I called hospitals with feeding programs, I called feeding specialists in different states, I payed for many one-hour consultations with said specialists. I compiled a feeding program with all the information I found.

We started eating the same thing at dinner time.

We started using a food game which we have since altered quite significantly.

We started doing a food of the week with sensory bins, and drawing and playing games with the food.

We started collecting fun utensils in hopes of making eating really fun!

We started having Bug cook with us.

All of these things have helped a little in lots of ways, but Bug’s eating habits are firmly where they were when we started.

No fruits. No vegetables. Not in their original form anyways.

Zucchini or banana bread/muffins? Heck yeah! Strawberry and banana smoothie? Every day! But give her a banana or a strawberry and she will refuse it. We have gotten her comfortable with a few foods, enough that she will lick them or even take a nibble, but she isn’t willingly eating any of these foods.

And unfortunately following her eating habits have started to make me sick. My body runs on fruit and veg and I have not been getting nearly enough. I try to add those groups into my breakfast, snacks and lunch, but moming is hard and some days I forget that I do in fact need lunch. So what had been working just isn’t anymore.

Cue Auntie Fred (Fred is a nickname our dad bestowed upon her when she was little…inside joke). Auntie Fred is a plant-based dietitian. Plant Based you say? Fancy for vegan. Although Bug may be a lacto-vegetarian and my hubby is a part-time omnivore, does not mean we all can’t live healthy under the same roof.

Auntie Fred is working with me to come up with feeding plans for everyone, yes everyone, so we can all get the nutrition we need but still eat mostly or partly the same things at dinner. This has proven to be a daunting task. Turns out I’m pickier than I thought. Six seems to be the only typical eater of the house!

But acknowledging that things weren’t working is what needed to happen. We need to find a balance of things that will work for us again. It may take some help but we will do it.

We are also going to be pushing our doctor for more answers on Bug’s feeding issues because I have been reading up on a few and she seems to fit a couple of them fairly perfectly. Here’s to hoping for answers and help.

If your kiddo eats ANY fruit or ANY veggies, please please please let them know how awesome they are. Even if the only fruit they eat is grapes, that is one more than my kiddo and I want so desperately for her to want to eat more things.

Moming is hard. Eating is hard. Accepting things aren’t working is hard. But we gotta keep chuggin’ along till we find what will work next.

Homeschool and Youtube

In our homeschool we do not really follow a curriculum, we do not have a set schedule for homeschool work, and we use a lot of technology. Technology can be a tricky subject, some parents don’t believe in letting their kiddos use technology till they are older, others think that having time limits is the better way to go. I am in neither of those camps. There are some days…weeks even! that we go without turning on the computer, there are other days that turn into weeks that we use the computer almost all day.

I save weekends for watching the non-educational movies and shows. But during the week, if the computer is on, we are watching something educational. Leap Frog, Magic School Bus, The Cat In The Hat Knows A Lot About That, or something along those lines. But we also LOVE watching Youtube. Especially for science. So I thought I would share our favorite Youtube channels and why we love them so much!

The Brain Scoop with Emily Graslie. This channel is made by the Field Museum in Chicago Illinois, they have experts there that Emily interviews and most recently she went to the Denver Museum of Nature and Science and left her DNA there for their research! We love the episode where she gets to see how bullet ant venom is used in science! They also have a video on how bird vomit helps us understand history…you can imagine the questions the girls had for me! Check her out here.

Grant Thompson The King Of Random. Grant’s channel is very science-y and he likes to set stuff on fire and melt things (safely). We have learned a lot from him, like how to make swamp water drinkable, that you cannot dye liquid nitrogen, how to set ice on fire, and what happens when you put stuff in a vacuum chamber (slime and pancake mix in a vacuum is our favorites!). He is very knowledgeable and explains what is going on with science! He has four kids so he is kid friendly! Something I am having a harder time finding, no cussing or being rude, just blowing stuff up! Check his channel out here!

CBeeBies. CBeebies has so much going on! It is a British channel with lots of fun colorful cartoons and singing. we use CBeebies for their bedtime stories though. Unfortunately I cannot find a channel for the bedtime stories, however if you go to Youtube and type in “CBeebies bedtime stories” a lot of videos and a really great playlist will come up! The bedtime stories are read/recited by actors and have great visuals and emotion! Check out the main CBeebies channel here.

VeggieTales! If you have Netflix Kids, you have most likely seen their show Veggietales In The House and Veggietales In The City. Both are new adaptations of the older Veggietales shows. We personally don’t use them for their religious aspects, but they have great messages and are really funny. The Veggietales Silly Songs are my personal favorite. I have Pizza Angel stuck in my head on a regular basis! Here is their channel!

The Slow Mo Guys!! This has quickly become Bug’s personal favorite, they blow stuff up or so funny things, like get in a 6ft water balloon, just to film it on their high speed camera! They like putting paint or colored powder in the things they explode to get awesome colors! Plus, British accent! Check out their latest episode where they put an airbag in a microwave here!

The Backyard Scientist. Now this guy is fun! he filled up his pool with water beads! But he also explains the science behind his experiments. He has made a fire vortex, broken into a huge safe, blown up watermelons, and again, HE FILLED HIS POOL WITH WATER BEADS!!! Check him out here.

The Spangler Effect with Steve Spangler. This guy is amazing! He has a show on Hulu and a few awesome channels on Youtube. He is I think in our top 3! He explains every little thing and gets really into what he is presenting. It makes his channel so fun to watch and very informative! If you visit his website, he also has kits you can buy as well as other fun experiments you can do at home! We often pick one of his videos and then replicate it for a science lesson. I highly recommend you check him out here!

Smarter Everyday. I love his devotion to learning. He really really wants to learn more about the world around us, why things do the things they do, what happens when, whats inside. He is really awesome at making things as simple as possible and giving great examples to help us understand what he is talking about. He has had the opportunity to meet some amazing people and go on some pretty epic field trips! Check him out here.

Bruce Yeany. He is a science teacher who seems to love doing experiments (for sure my kind of science class!). I do think his target age is a bit older than my girls are, however, we still love to watch and talk about what he is doing. Our favorite episode of his is the sand pendulum. Check out his experiments here.

Sesame Street. For those of us that choose not to have cable, Sesame Street can be hard to find. Their Youtube is really great when we are out and about because they have a lot of five minute and under videos. We love the episodes with Julia! You can find them here.

ZeeKay Junior has a lot of great shows on its channel, we personally love the Mr Maker episodes where they make art and tell a story! It is very colorful and fun! Check out Mr Maker and ZeeKay Jr here!

Bluebee TeeVee is….well, I will let them tell you! “Bluebee TeeVee the autism information station, a series of webisodes to empower autistic children and educate their peers about autism. Think Schoolhouse Rock meets Mr. Rogers Neighborhood in a quirky blend of educational entertainment. Episodes will focus on friendship, bullying, communication, safety and other important autism-related topics. Best of all, the series is being written, performed, filmed and edited by two young men on the autism spectrum”. I really love this! Show them some love and check them out here!!!

The Bearded Science Guy! He has some great experiments on his channel! We love anything Coke and Mentos, and he has lots of fire! Our favorite episode right now is the homemade lava lamp! Check him out here.

Cosmic Kids Yoga. I personally love this channel because I can put it on for the girls and have time to get a load of laundry going while they get their PE in for the day! Thier yoga episodes tell a story and have great (green screen) visuals! It is super fun, and I have even joined in! Fun yoga for kids here!

I really could go on and on, we love Youtube! We watch How To Cake It and My Cupcake Addiction for our foodie desires, and LiveEachDay for learning about other families. I would love to do a What We Watch On Netflix/Hulu post soon as well.

I really feel technology can be such a great resource, especially if you or your kiddo, like Bug and I, are very visual learners. She learned how to count to 100  by 2’s, 5’s and 10’s in one day of watching math song videos. It can be useful and powerful if you don’t abuse it! Have fun watching things explode or doing yoga! I hope this has been informative and useful!

Binge watch all the science!! Ready……go!

Our Best Bug Hunting Tips

Bug hunting and searching for snails and slugs is a big deal in our house. For this past Christmas my sister got each of the girls their own safari set complete with fishing-type vest (the ones with lots of pockets), magnifying glass, tweezers, microscope, a whistle (just in case you get lost!), a wide-brimmed hat, and a couple containers to put our finds in. We use this super amazing gear frequently. But we have also done many many bug hunting trips sans equipment.

I would like to share our must-haves and must-dos for exploring and adventures, but first a word from Six and Bug:

Six: “Mommy……Can we go ‘sploring today…I want to go on a ‘benture!”

Bug: “Ooh! Me me!! I want to go ‘benture too!”

I would love to say I have been 100% prepared on all of our adventures, but sadly that is not the case. We have been caught in a torrential downpour, we have had a potty accident and meltdowns 1+ miles from the car, booboos, forgotten snacks/water, and we forgot about this appointment and we need to go nows. I am not perfect.

We have a lot of fun on our adventures though. And I will usually try to bring our journal or when we get home have them draw what we saw. Bug has been very interested in beetles and slugs so we Googled those after one adventure, Six has asked why the snails we found in the forest were fuzzy so we looked that up, I have wondered why woolly caterpillars only show up in certain areas, so I look it up then tell the girls.

There is so much about the world, life and nature you can learn by going out and exploring. We have done math after catching or releasing bugs: how many do we have now. We have done science: is this alive or not alive? Where does this live…that is called a habitat. We have done health: do not lick the banana slug! And even worked some language arts in there: lets spell out slug with sticks! We also sing about slugs counting for music.

We have also learned some very important information while on these adventures:

  1. Do not attempt to wash slug slime off with water. Just don’t do it. I don’t understand the molecular difference between snail and slug slime but slug slime will multiply and get gooier and stickier when you try to wash it off. Even with soap!!! Use a baby wipe or a rag to wipe it off (preferably a baby wipe or something disposable because it doesn’t even fully come off through a load of laundry), then wash with soap and water. Or avoid holding slugs altogether, that would solve that problem! But my girls love exploring so I let them hold and pet snails and slugs….Six will even put them on her face (bleh!).
  2. If you bring a container to catch bugs or slugs, make sure it has holes poked in the lid! We made this mistake and the smell…… Just poke some holes and trust me on this one!
  3. If your kiddos want to catch bugs and slugs but are nervous of touching them, get some disposable rubber gloves. No mess!
  4. Go potty before the adventure!!
  5. Bring a blank-page journal and attach a pen/cil to it! For Bug, she often cannot recall what we have done in the past, so waiting till we get home to draw out what we saw or practice writing can end in a struggle.
  6. Take pictures! I take so many pictures it isn’t even funny. My hubby will often make fun of me for it because I take thousands a month and have to empty my phone storage quite often. BUT those pictures helps Bug retell what we saw and did, and both girls love to look at pictures and show our visitors and aids. We have a photo album the girls help to make that is just for them and they get to decide what goes into that book to look though and share.
  7. Don’t let your kiddo hold the container of bugs and slugs unsupervised. I inadvertently made this mistake one day. Six fell and was crying so I set down the container full of woolly caterpillars to take care of her, but I failed to see Bug grab the container and she shook it quite hard a few times….did you know that when stressed woolly caterpillars will jettison their prickly fur…well now you do! Poor little guys. I promptly let them go and hoped we didn’t kill them!
  8. Baby food jars make great bug-holders! you can see what is inside very clearly and they are kid-sized!

We are lucky enough to live in an area abundant with hiking trails and parks and forests, so many wonderful spaces to explore. Nature is so important, being out in it is a big stress reliever and is just relaxing–even with trying to keep Bug and Six safe! They even seem more relaxed and calm when we go on adventures.

I think I will create a Go Outside and Explore day where you go exploring, even if it is in your backyard! and then share pictures with me! That sounds like fun!

Get outside and explore!!

Bubble Bubble…Oh What A Beautiful Mess


Oh what fun it is to make a mess. Greater fun when you don’t have to clean it up, too!

In our last order through our Charter, I decided to get a box set of 10 bottles of liquid water colors. Not knowing what to do with them or why we would need them, but they were on sale and sales are awesome! Our box arrived tinted yellow because one of the bottles leaked. It sat in our garage for weeks until I saw a blog post about dying bubbles with food coloring and painting with them! Well I’m sure liquid watercolors could do that same thing!

Que dyed hands and blue “freckles” from splashes.


This was a very fun art project! If it wasn’t always breezy where we live it would’ve worked better.

It is also extremely simple! Just add liquid water colors to a container of bubbles and give it a mix, then blow some bubbles! I may use butcher paper next time, even though our 12″x18″ paper did great.


I do feel like a bit of a silly goose though. I poured our bubbles into old yogurt containers I save for paint and messy projects like this one, but we didn’t end up using all the bubble mix…not even close. I didn’t want to waste the colored bubbles so I put them back in their little containers that I had poured them out of……why didn’t I just color the bubbles IN the original container?! I don’t know, I blame my mommy brain.

Daddy set up our messy project table outside in the backyard for us and I got THEM dressed in messy play clothes. I however forgot to change and now have an awesome pink bubble splatter on my favorite t-shirt. But it was well worth it. Six also got too close to a few of the bulles as they popped and ended up with blue freckles all over her face. She was not very pleased, but it was adorable!

We have plans to write a few letters aka handprints and names, on these and gift them to a few family members. I also may frame one to go with the framed bubble wrap and glitter artwork Bug made her first day of her Special Day Class way back in 2014!

I will suggest:

  1. Do not do this inside.
  2. Do not do it near a white anything.
  3. Do not do this if it is breezy outside.
  4. DO do this outside.
  5. DO have fun!



Date Night Game For Two. A Review.

There are very few games that both my husband and I like, that are also great for our girls to play with as well. The girl’s don’t understand how to play Munchkin and that needs more than two people, we really dislike Monopoly even though I have an awesome I Love Lucy collectors edition Monopoly game, Clue needs more than two people, and Exploding Kittens just doesn’t seem like an awesome little kids game.

We love playing with Bananagrams though! It is an awesome game for my hubby and I to play together and awesome for the girls to play with and be able to learn from. I did a review for the My First Bananagrams here, and we still use them daily and have taken them with us on many occasions.

This is where ZipIt comes in. ZipIt is from the Bananagrams arsenal of games which, in my book, makes it automatically great. So when Bananagrams sent me a ZipIt game, I was so excited to do a review!


I wanted to be able to use this game not only for my hubby and I to play, but for the girls in our homeschool as well. It didn’t take too long for me to come up with a few ways to use them not as their intended purpose.

This game is so addicting! It did take me watching the Bananagram’s youtube video on how it is played for me to fully understand, but I can be a little slow on the draw sometimes. If you have played the original Bananagrams then you are sure to love Zipit. It is a little more challenging, which makes it a bit more fun!

So what is this magical game I keep gushing about?! Fine, I’ll tell you!

It is a word game made of dice with letters on them instead of numbers. This is what makes the game a bit more challenging than the regular Bananagram game; you have to look on all sides of the dice to find the letter you need to complete a word! There are 24 dice so you and a partner split them evenly, roll them all up and try to beat the other by forming a word grid using all your dice before they do! Then you are able to keep score with the two zippers on the sides of the carrying case.

The yellow zippered side is winning…that would be my hubby!

I have won three games out of the dozens my hubby and I have played. His brain is just so much faster than mine is at coming up with words. I do credit that to him having a job outside the house. I argue with an almost 4 year old all day, my word arsenal is not up to par to talking with adults any longer let alone a fast-paced word game! That doesn’t stop me from having fun playing though! I still want to play even though I will most likely be beaten!

We have even made our weekly dates include ZipIt. Yes we have weekly dates, and yes 99% of the time they do not involve leaving the house because babysitter. So for this particular one we broke out the frozen Girl Scout Thin Mints and went outside on the table that is still set up from our bubble art, put down a quilt that my great great grandma made, made our respective drinks (yes that is a Fallout mug–I married a nerd), and played till it got too chilly! And of course I lost again. I will keep playing till I loose no longer! And then I will play some more.

We have played on the rug while the girls color or look at books as well. I feel it is a good thing for them to see mommy and daddy playing together so they know how to act when they play a game, and also if they come over to watch we will sound out our words for them after the round so they can know what the heck we are doing!

See the numbers on the side there? That is the score card! the zipper keeps track of the score…ZipIt!

My hubby and I have played this game a LOT since we received it. It will for sure be a game I share about and play with others when given the opportunity (read: when I get to hang out with other adults in a non-meeting setting!). It is easy to pick up and easy to get addicted to! I am someone who loves Scrabble and Bookworm and word puzzles so this is just a great game to me.

There are also alternate rules included, or think up your own! We have a no proper noun rule, as in Scrabble, but not a no two letter word rule as we do follow in Scrabble; you totally could though. One alternate rule play I would love to do but could guarantee would end horribly is a Palindrome ZipIt! Where you can earn an extra two points for playing a palindrome word OR kick it up a notch and only play palindromes! That would be so hard for me, but sounds like a lot of fun! Or try long word, rhyming, only four letter words, or just words that start with G. There are so many ways to play to keep it fun and exciting!

I was also very determined to create ways to use ZipIt so that our girls would be able to use it as well. It wasn’t as hard as I originally thought it would be. It is almost exactly like Bananagrams except a lot less pieces. So we tried using the ZipIt pieces with some of our tried and true Bananagrams games: flash cards, say it/build it/ make it worksheet, spelling out words from books. All of those ideas worked great! But I wanted something new and different.

I actually got the idea from the Bananagrams Facebook page, they had shared a picture of someone using Bananagrams tiles in a way to teach letter sounds and words and I jumped on that! It was an awesome idea so I adapted it to fit our needs.

Letter sounds, beginning sounds, double sounds, simple words. These things are versatile and awesome!

We worked really hard on this game! We collected a few things from the toy boxes and I just kind of went with what they were trying to describe that thing as. The Mr. Brown book is a big deal here, both girls can read most of the words and they LOVE making the sounds, so the -oo sound in moo was the first thing they wanted to try to make. They found two O’s and we practiced making that sound and giggled at how our lips looked making it! The egg is green so we found the G sound in the bag. Boot starts with a B sound, and so on.

Six making the words BUS

ZipIt is a game I would highly suggest you check out! It is awesome for both adults and kids! I found a few good ways to use them that were not their intended purpose, as well as a few rules to play by when my hubby and I play as it was intended to be played.

Versatile, easy, fun, compact, and addicting! I would suggest these to any word-lover you know!

To Our First Responders

I was recently presented with a unique opportunity to speak to a local fire Chief as well as a few first responders. I wrote a letter detailing a few of the major fears that go along with emergency situations and kids on the spectrum. I put out a call on a few social media groups, specifically groups of parents of kids with autism, and asked what they wanted first responders to know in an emergency situation.

I will also be following up on this topic with solutions to letting others (first responders) know that your kiddo is on the spectrum and how.

Some resources I found helpful were:

This is a very important topic for me because Bug is on the autism spectrum. It is not an easy subject to think about or discuss, but it is so important!

I will be speaking to multiple local fire departments in my area as well as groups and people who deliver presentations and trainings around the country on the subject of autism safety and first responders.

I am the daughter of a former first responder/paramedic, I grew up in a small town where you knew most all the fire fighters and even lived next to the chief of the volunteer fire department. I will be speaking to this department as well as a few others. I sincerely hope they as first responders will understand that kids (and teens and adults) on the spectrum are not trying to make their job harder, and will continue to learn about autism and the many ways individuals with ASD are affected.

This will be an ongoing topic on this blog for as long as I feel is necessary to get information about autism to our first responders. I will share my journey as a mom trying to spread awareness to hopefully help everyone involved.

Fireworks. And Why I Hate Them.

Happy Fourth Of July. I hope you are all enjoying a day off, hopefully enjoying some sunshine and family.

This year won’t be much different than previous Fourths, we will still visit gwama and gwampa’s house for a picnic on gwampa’s day off (tomorrow), we will still be making s’mores with uncle C, we will still be setting off noiseless fireworks, and we will still be making sure both girls fall asleep with their noise-cancelling headphones on.

We, unfortunately, live in a very populated area, and with that comes a lot of noise. I time bedtime, lunches and snacks to a few people’s schedules (completely serious), and have had to leave the house with the girls because of noise issues (more often than I would care to have happen). And these noisy people are the same people who insist on setting off illegal and LOUD fireworks off from June 30th to about Labor Day at random times throughout the day and night (as in 2:30am right behind our house).

Normally I would complain to my husband, maybe put some earplugs in or turn up a movie. But since having a daughter with autism, normal annoyances such as fireworks and working on boat engines and power washing at 6 am, have caused so many issues. Sleeping, meltdowns, anxiety, fear of these noises.

There are many PSA’s about keeping pets indoors during fireworks, and we do with our kitty. But when there are people who think fireworks at any time of the day or night is totally fine and don’t care about the people around them for the two months they have decided is an acceptable celebratory time period, all I want to say to them is: I hate you. I hate you for scaring both my girls awake, causing Bug to have a meltdown because she cannot escape that noise, causing Six to cry for hours because it was so scary for her, causing our cat to go berserk. So many issues are caused from fireworks and inconsiderate neighbors.

I know I cannot be the only one this has happened to. I cannot be the only mom who hates fireworks and inconsiderate neighbors. I can’t be.

And don’t get me wrong, I love celebrating, we do lots of fun stuff, we even attempted to go to a fireworks show one year, blankets and headphones in tow, but that is just not something that will be part of out tradition. And both my husband and I have repeatedly asked those offending neighbors to keep their fireworks to reasonable times because we have such sensitivities. They have not obliged.

So for not, s’mores, sparklers, picnics, and noise-canceling headphones will be on our Fourth’s agenda.

I hope you all have a wonderful fun-filled day, and are not jolted awake by screaming kiddos when the fireworks continue on past midnight!