Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Holiday Time Can Suck...Yes I am a Grinch: UPDATED to include Thanksgivukkah

This is a repost from October 2010 with one addition. This year we have added a new holiday to the mix- Thanksgivukkah...nope not kidding. Hanukkah and American Thanksgiving coincide this year. It will not happen again for another 79,043 years. Cool hah ...

So on top of everything else I do, I am trying to bring together these two holidays. Maybe some sweetpotato latkes RECIPE HERE or some other rather inventive recipes HERE. 

Buzzfeed gets into the spirit of the new holiday too.

And so does Stephen Cobert, but not in the way you might think or knowing him this is probably what you would expect: 

The Colbert Report
Get More: Colbert Report Full Episodes,Video Archive

And what would a Jewish holiday be without Manishewitz:

More HERE.

And merchandise at moderntribe.

Who says life can't be interesting, inventive and just this side of goofy?

P.S. and if you have noticed there are as many ways to spell Thanksgivukah as there are ways to spell Hanukkah, Chanukkah, Hannukah, Chanukah.....

With the advent of Halloween, the nation enters that time of year I like to call the Holiday Sprint. I am not sure who ever thought that putting all these major holidays together just a few short weeks from each other was a good thing, but I bet it wasn’t a woman with a family. I can see it now, the women putting together their lists, and their ideas of how to celebrate the season. What to serve, getting the kids the proper clothes, who to invite and not invite and how to arrange it and explain it to the younger members of the family when Uncle Sot overindulges on the booze and passes out on the livingroom sofa (you know there is always one).  It is a look of sheer exhaustion; panic and that oft said small prayer to God to help me through this. Why women do this to themselves is beyond me. But it seems that we are hell bent on making things fun for everyone else even if we are too overstressed to actually enjoy the season ourselves. Now add into the mix, the requirements of a special needs child and what you end up with is a balancing act that quite frankly is undoable. Yes, undoable. Oh heavens blasphemy you say. No I say. I have actually come to appoint in my life that I have the strength to say, enough is really enough.

Listen, I am going to say something that is akin to sacrilege. I hate this time of year. Hate it, hate it, hate it. I see no fun in the overstimulation, the sensory overload, the inundation of noises, smells, physicality of this time of year. I don’t even have sensory issues (well not until I started menopause and now that is another issue altogether). I can’t even begin to imagine how hard it has been for the boys. Trying to navigate the world’s sensory stimuli is hard enough but with everything being thrown at them at once, it had to have become overwhelming. I do remember the meltdowns in school and the refusal to leave the house. I had not put it together that it was a sensory issue. I usually just thought it was too much for them to process in general; too much for their brain to filter, between the excited children at school, the barrage of information on the televisions and in the stores. But once I understood we took the proverbial bull by the horns and did something about it.

I do have to admit that this time of year is a little easier for us than most of you. Being Jewish we do not celebrate Christmas, so the smells and lights and the tree associated with Jesus’ birthday doesn’t permeate our home. Now this didn’t mean that the children didn’t have holiday celebrations in school and that there weren’t trees and lights and decorations all over town. We used to go into New York City every year too to see the tree at Rockefeller Center and the Christmas windows. I thought it was fun for them, while we don’t celebrate the holiday, the idea that they could appreciate how lovely things are at this time of year and how the nation does celebrate was just part of raising a child in the United States, then one day they said they didn’t like it. Not because they didn’t like the idea of Christmas, they are no fools, but it was too much for them.

 In fact one of my most favorite stories about HSB is when he was 7 years old. It was Christmas Time and the local bakery makes these wonderful sugar cookies. At this time of year they make the cookies, in you guessed it, the shape of Christmas trees. Well not wanting the boys to think that they are being totally deprived of anything fun and that they were still part of society so I bought them a Christmas tree butter cookie from the bakery. You see I have memories of growing up the only Jewish child in my school in the South’s Bible belt, replete with teachers who at this time of year made sure to point out that I was not part of society and generally not welcome. I didn’t want the boys to feel rejected by their own country. A little acknowledgment of the society around them and knowing that they can be different and still be Americans is just fine. So when I picked up HSB at school, I told him that I had bought him the cookie. Now the only part that HSB heard was Christmas tree, not cookie. He became so excited.

“You bought us a Christmas tree!” he exclaimed.

“No, I bought you a Christmas tree cookie,” I explained.

“Oh, “he said with a forlorn look on his face,” you know I am half Christian so I can have a Christmas tree.”

“No, you are not, both daddy and I are Jewish,” I told him.

“Oh, OK,” he said.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Remembering that Halloween is not for Everyone

This is a repost of a repost from 2009. It is very helpful that we remember that every holiday is not a fun experience for every child and that those on the autism spectrum have different needs when holiday season comes around.


I have been hinting for several weeks about discussing our issues with Halloween. I know I have been sidetracked because of the many adventures of Collegeman and Highschoolboy and I apologize. Anyway here goes the wonderful reminiscences of my years of trick-or-treating. I have to tell you that my favorite picture in the whole world is the one I referenced in the earlier post Changing Your Dreams: Life With an Autistic Child. It's the one where collegeman and highschoolboy are still really little. Highschoolboy was even still in diapers. He was dressed as his favorite character in the whole world, Winnie-the-Pooh and Collegeman was superman. I love this picture for the total parental reason that they look so cute and adorable. But if you look really close, what you can also see is a look of unsureness on highschoolboy's face. He seems to be saying to himself "I am not to sure about this costume thing." Now highschoolboy had not been diagnosed yet, so as much as we were aware, unfortunately it wasn't until much later that we picked up all the signals.

Highschoolboy had always been terrified of clowns. Not just the child afraid of the scary looking man with the balloons, but a down right terrifying Nightmare on Elm Street kind of fear. If a clown showed up at a party highschoolboy had to leave. If a clown showed up at pre-school he could not go to the assembly. I had been assured by the pediatrician that alot of children are afraid of clowns. So I thought nothing of it. It wasn't until recently that a person I follow on twitter who has aspergers explained to me that it was a very common fear among autistic children. The distortion of the facial features is very confusing. Who knew, another misheggas (nonsense) that our children get to deal with.

But what I had not figured out at the time of that Halloween picture is that absolute fear that this holiday engendered in my son. It was not the ghosts and goblins. He knew like any child that they were not really real. He knows that Dorothy doesn't travel to OZ and that the Wizard is not a real person. (However, we do know that the Wicked Witch of the West exists, we just can't melt her with water.) But he really believed that when people put on masks and costumes they transformed, shape-shifted like a changeling, into those ghouls for the day. He thought that there was some magical power that the "Halloween Aura" had over the masks so that people's personalities were transformed  into those monsters or characters. So every year when he went trick-or-treating and put on a costume, he would make sure to only wear part of the costume, or no costume at all. We have pictures from several years worth of Halloweens and in each one he is very hesitant and looked frightened. Again we thought nothing of it-made excuses, like he had an ear infection or was coming down with a cold. He never ever said anything. Just thought it was a kid thing, you know a little more intense than the average child, but that is highschoolboy.

Read the rest HERE.


Just as an update. Now that highschoolboy is CM2 and a junior in college his disdain for Halloween has not changed. He loathes costumes and even left the gamers guild club at school because everyone dressed up as their favorite game character.

While we do hand out candy on Halloween, CM2 will have none of it and doesn't even recognize that the holiday exists in real time. He stays away from the door and has nothing to do with the neighborhood children. Now at his college there are kids that dress up and we always have to remind the para to be extra vigilant on that day.

At times you do have to come to the conclusion that nope, you can't fix everything and that sometimes they really just need to learn how to live with their phobias. As long as it isn't effecting his day to day and his future, this one issue is going to be put on a back burner for a someday, maybe.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Anti-Bullying Poetry Slam Entry

In light of the horrible bullying epidemic in this country and the death of yet another bullied child, this poetry slam presentation is very refreshing.



The first Annual BRONX YOUTH POETRY SLAM took place in May 2013 at the Kingsbridge Library in the Bronx, NY. Curated by Community Board 8 Youth Committee Chairman, Lamont Parker. Co-curated and Hosted by Advocate of Wordz.

Notes from "Advocate Of Wordz" - 'Ethan Metzger did not advance to the second round, but this poem was my favorite one from the evening.'

h/t Israel Matzav

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Another Child Bullied to Death; When Will Parents do Their Damn Job?

cross-posted at Liberty's Spirit

At least in this case there have been some arrests HERE More HERE

But it still comes down to these fundamental issues: where were the parents in all of this? Why did they not pay attention to what their children were doing or monitor their computer use? According to one report the girls were separated by the school so the bullies' parents had to know. Why did the bullies’ parents not do something about their daughters' cruel relentless actions?

Here’s a question for the school district: Since the bullying did not stop, even after the victim was moved to another school, why wasn’t child services called in if there actually is a law in Florida to prevent cyberbullying? Why weren’t the parents of the bullies charged with child endangerment?
Years ago, the local school district near me did just that, called in the authorities. When a group of girls refused to stop bullying another student and their parents refused to intervene, the district actually had them all arrested and made wards of the court.

Are parents today so afraid that their little darlings won’t be popular that they allow and even encourage evil behavior by their children? Are parents today so afraid that they will be seen as not perfect themselves, that they refuse to believe that their children can be horrible human beings, the “Not my child syndrome”? The answer is yes to both.

Recently the following story from my town was related to me by one of the participants effected: there was a group of girls who after accepting an invitation to another’s birthday party, on the day of the party they all called 15 minutes apart to say they weren’t coming. They had decided that the birthday girl was not in favor anymore and they were going to ruin her birthday. When one of the bully-girl’s mothers was confronted about her daughter’s behavior, her excuse was that she was not going to get involved in the social life of twelve-year-olds. Ignoring the fact that parenting of adolescents is a necessary and overwhelming full-time job, this mother’s way of dealing with reality was to denigrate those that actually cared to parent their children.

This is what society is up against. Selfish and self-centered parents who see their children as an extension of themselves to such an extent that they can never do any wrong. It is not easy to parent in today’s day and age with computers, phones, emails and social media. But you can do it effectively.

In fact one of the best ways to do it is to say “NO” every once in awhile, set boundaries, limits and expectations of behavior for your children from the day they are born. Make certain that your child knows what is expected of them and the consequences for failing to live up to their responsibilities.
Behavior, right and wrong, ethics and morals is something that is NOT ingrained in our children. It is something that needs to be taught. Being afraid to hear your child tell you that they hate you is infantile and lazy.

When CM2 was three years old, he had gotten in trouble in pre-school and was given a time out. 

He promptly fired the teacher.

When I picked him up I was regaled with the event.

I told him to apologize and that since I had hired the teacher he could not fire her.

He then fired me.

I  responded that he couldn’t fire me that I am his mother and will be until the day he died.

He then told me that I wasn’t his friend.

I answered that no I was not his friend, I was his parent. That when he grew up, if he was lucky and I liked him, we would then be friends. But until that day he was to do as he was told.

He huffed with his arms across his chest.

He never tried to unfriend me or fire me again.

Has he told me he hates me since then. Oh yes he has, more than once. At the moment it is a daily occurrence. I don’t care. What I care is that he learn to function in an appropriate manner. Learn what the world is about. Educate himself, and become self-sufficient.

I did not create my children to be my friends. I gave them life so they could live life. As a parent it is up to you to make sure that your children have the necessary tools to be happy and successful. And if that means clamping down on their actions, behaviors and “social standing” too bad. Grow the heck up and do your job.

Political Bullying, We Wonder Why Our Kids Are So Mean
This is How a School Should Handle Bullying
On-Line Trolls; IRL Trolls; Cyberbullying and the Ability to Block


Found this article HERE about a bullied special needs teen. Seriously what is wrong with this generation and their parents?

Some more political tolerance HERE.

UPDATE:  According to news reports a parent of one of the arrested teens said that his daughter didn't do anything wrong and that she was a very good girl. Now does that mean he doesn't think her actions were inconsistent with kindness, or that bullying is just part of growing up or does he refuse to accept what she did was as heartless as it was? Either way here is a prime example of a parent not doing his job and refusing to acknowledge what a lousy parent he is.

UPDATE: The mother of one of the bullies has been arrested herself on child abuse charges after graphic video of her beating children between the ages of 9-12 went on-line. As the sheriff in the case said, the acorn does not fall far from the tree.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Practicality: Entering the Adult World: Transitioning Out of K-12

Next step...there is always a next step. No matter who you are or where you live, your thoughts need to go to the next level of progress for your child.  I think it was easier when they were little because there was the IEP regime. You knew what to expect and you knew what worked. You could figure out how to get the services your child needed by simply looking at the plan in front of you. But that all changes when the "yellow bus stops coming to your front door." And no, transition is not always played out before you. Technically districts are supposed to help with transition but that is not necessarily the case. In fact, from what I can tell, transition into adult services generally stinks countrywide. So here are some actions you need to take:

1. Make sure you keep all medical records. You will need to begin the process for adult social security disability benefits before your child turns 18. Despite what the news media is telling you, it is not easy to receive theses benefits. Try to give yourself enough time so that there isn't a huge gap between the end of childhood payments and the start of adult payments.

2. The same goes for Medicaid for your child. Yes, you could try to get into the Obamacare system, but that may actually be too expensive. If your child is an adult, and unemployed, they are entitled to Medicaid. (Also make sure that the Medicaid offered actually fits your child's needs.) Of course, check out all the plans and see which is best for your child. Also children are now allowed on the parents health insurance until they are 26. This is also helpful and probably the least expensive alternative. However, check out the laws in your state. See if you can switch back and forth between plans. Can your child rejoin your health insurance if the alternatives don't work out well? Check Here

3. Are there state programs for your adult child? What kind of work skills/training program exist if at all? Are their non governmental agencies that can help? What are the difference in residential and day programs? Find the government agencies that should be able to help you or point you in the right direction. This varies from state to state.

4. Is there adult state housing for them? Are they already in the system as a child? How hard is it to get into the system? What is the wait list time for housing? Is the housing system safe? (You may find that if your child was not in residential placement during k-12 then it is nearly impossible to get them into adult housing because the list is so long. In fact, in my area, if your child isn't in a residential placement by the time they are in middle school, it becomes harder and harder to place them.)

5. Go to an estate planning lawyer and make sure that all the necessary paperwork is in place. When your child turns 18, they are officially adults. You do NOT have any say over their medical care without their permission. This is moot, of course, if you need to have your child declared incompetent and under guardianship, which  is an entirely different set of legal issues. But for the majority of our children these papers are very important. You will need a health care proxy statement, and a power of attorney for your child.

6. If you were able to establish a special needs trust for your child make sure that it is in tact and properly created so your child can receive adult services. New laws and regulations are created yearly. Make certain your lawyer keeps on top of them.

7. If you have a child that goes to college make certain that they sign the FERPA statement allowing the school to talk to you. (Each school has their own version) If your child has problems at school and nothing has been signed the school does not have to inform you about anything concerning your child, including hospitalization and psychiatric treatment, never mind letting you know if they are failing. Meanwhile, you will still get the bill whether the FERPA is singed or not.

8. If your child goes onto post-secondary school, find out what accommodations are allowed at that school. While many colleges, and universities are allowing a variety of supports, many are not. Remember too that these supports are simply basic accommodations unless you pay for a specific autism related or LD related program. Supports do not include paras, or transportation or even in many cases assistive technology. (When the boys first started at their college there wasn't even a note takers program.) This is all up to the family now. (Yes I know, if you thought it was expensive before, it can become ridiculous now...sorry.) The IDEA does not apply to post-secondary education, only the ADA.

9. JOB COACHING is an essential element of post k-12 education. In fact some of it should have been done during those years when social skills were being taught. (Talk to your school and social skills programs to find the best way to accomplish this goal.) Unfortunately they usually are not. There is a big difference between social skills for school and social skills for jobs/interviewing. While many schools do have interview skills seminars (college and high school), this may not be enough for your child. Check out the program and add what you deem necessary. Check with your local businesses, many times they would be happy to have an intern with a job coach. Since internships are the way to go now, it would not be an unusual step for our children.

10. Do not think that your child cannot go to college or to a technical school. In fact many community colleges have terrific training programs for all levels of student and in a variety of professions. Check out what schools near you provide the best programs.

11. PS. Depending upon your child and their co-morbid issues (if they have any in fact), there is no reason your child could not go away to post-secondary education if they want to. But that is your call as their parent to figure out how best to accomplish this goal and to accommodate them as well.

As with everything that happens with our children, there is the basic plan and there is the revamped plan. While it is not possible to stay on top of every aspect of our children's future, it is up to us to try to figure out the best way to help them enter their young adult years.

Check out Advocacy Webpage
Check out Practicality Webpage

NOTE: This post is simply my own experience and what I found to be the important issues we faced once the boys aged out of K-12. This is merely a place to start. It is very important that you consult a respected estate and special needs attorney for all legal questions and problems.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Cups, A New Version- Let Freedom Be Proclaimed

I enjoy it when acapella groups use familiar modern melodies superimposed the with new lyrics. Here is one of my favorite groups, The Maccabeats, using Anna Kendricks "Cups" to sing a familiar Shabbat song "Let Freedom be Proclaimed."

‘Let freedom be proclaimed’, this is a Jewish-Yemenite prayer traditionally sung at the Shabbat table. It was composed by Dunas ben Labrat, a 10th century Sephardic Jew, thought to have been of Baghdadi origin, who was educated in Fez, Morocco.

Deror Yikra leven im bat veyintzorchem kemo bavat
Na’im shimchem velo yushbat shevu nuchu beyom Shabbat
Derosh navi ve’ulami ve’ot yesha aseh imi
Neta sorek b’etoch karmi she’eh shavat benei ami
Deroch poora betoch Batzra vegam Bavel asher gavra
Netotz tzarai be’af evra shema koli beyom ekra
Elohim ten bamidbar har hadas shita berosh tidhar
Velamazhir velanizhar shelomim ten kemei nahar
Hadoch kamai El kana bemog levav u’vimgina
Venarchiv peh u’nemallena leshonenu lecha rina
De’eh chochma lenafshecha vehi keter leroshecha
Netzor mitzvat kedoshecha shemor Shabbat kodshecha

Deror Yikra - Freedom
Dunash ben Labrat,
Fez-Baghdad-Sfarad, 10th Century
Freedom shall He proclaim for His sons and daughters and will keep you as the apple of his eye
Pleasant is your name and will not cease to be repose and rest on the Sabbath day
Seek my home and my temple and give me a sign of deliverance
Plant a choice vine in my vineyard turn to the need of my people
Tread the wine-press in Botzra and also Babylon who overpowered
Crush my enemies in anger and fury hear my voice on the day I call out
Lord, let the dessert bloom like a mountain
myrtle, acacia, cypress and elm
To those who counsel and to those who are cautious give peace
as owing as a river’s waters
Conquer those who rise against me, Oh zealous God ll their hearts with fear and despair
en we shall open our mouths and ll our tongues with Your joyful song
Know wisdom for your soul and it shall be a crown upon your head
Keep the commandment of your Holy One observe the Sabbath, your sacred day

Deror Yikra is one of the oldest and most popular Shabbat songs, known and sung throughout Jewish Diaspora and history. The many tunes to this piyut vary from ancient original compositions through borrowed and adapted foreign ones to modern day Israeli creations. It was written by Dunash ben Labrat, the tenth Century
poet and philologist, who is considered the pioneer of the measured meter in Hebrew poetry and the harbinger of the golden age of Spain. His name appears in the first, second and fifth stanzas as an acrostic and is concealed in a playful manner in the other two.
The piyut revolves around the idea of the spiritual haven provided for the Jew on Shabbat. This personal, microcosmic salvation interweaves with the communal one of the Jewish people and in turn brings macrocosmic redemption to the whole world and elevates it to a higher spiritual level. The Jewish people are analogized in the Midrash to the groom while the Shabbat is the bride, and as spouses they take care of and protect each
other. Just as the Jew observes the Shabbat so the Shabbat preserves and protects him. It redeems him from the burden of the daily routine and lets him taste a sample of the world to come, the flavor of the full and real
The original by Anna Kendrick:

Meanwhile you can also find talent no matter where you look.


Tuesday, October 8, 2013

To Sleep, To Sleep, To Sleep I Don't Go

Nope.  No sleep.

Oh the boys are sleeping just fine. Its me. Only me that can't sleep. The thoughts whirl around in my head and just don't stop. Then when I do fall asleep, the night sweats make their dreaded appearance and I wake up feeling as if I've been slimmed by Nickelodeon goo.

So I try to think sweet thoughts of sugarplum fairies and unicorns with rainbows to get myself back to sleep.

But this is how I really feel inside....


Monday, October 7, 2013

It's October so Time for Our Health Insurance Company to Play the Dumbass Card

It's October, we have fulfilled our out-of-pocket deductible for out-of-network providers. So that means that the insurance company has to start refunding some of our money. But lo and behold, now suddenly they keep claiming they are not receiving the out-of-network bills. For some reason the way we sent our bills all year seemed to work just fine, and they knew what to do with the therapy bills sent. But now, apparently I don't know how to accomplish the most simplest of tasks like faxing papers. Of course, all the other papers we faxed at the same time as the therapy bills went through without a glitch. Does make a person wonder, doesn't it?

As a note, they also tried to pull this last year at this time. In fact earlier in the year, the insurance tried to get away with not paying for orthotics for the hubby even though it specifically says in our policy that they will pay for orthotics. The irony is that our company is self-funded through a private insurance, so in truth it ends up costing the insurance company nada. I wonder however, if at the end of the fiscal year, if there is money left over from our company's account, who gets to keep the overage? Does the insurance company get to claim the overage as an asset? Can't figure out why the insurance would care if our corporation had to pay out on the policy unless it effected the insurance's bottomline in some financial way.

Meanwhile, I have a call into hubby's benefits people to get them to help. Last year, they were finally able to get us our money back. But its just that this is ridiculously annoying. We pay for our own insurance and believe you me its anything but cheap.  I merely want what I contracted to receive. I took care of my part and now its time for the insurance to live up to their part of the deal.

But at least I do have some recourse and people to help me access our rights under the policy. Then in New York State, we also have a state run agency that will help if the insurance company doesn't live up to their obligations. But I wonder what will happen to those who only have government to rely upon for their healthcare. (Yes I know we have that already in some way through medicaid and medicare. But at least with medicare, they can purchase medicaid insurance plans like that offered through Humana. So you are not just dealing with government largesse or malaise.)

As it stands right now, if we don't get what we are entitled to, the state can go to bat for us and even sue the insurance group if there is an egregious violation. But you can't sue the government if it doesn't let you. It's called sovereign immunity. So even if the government screws you, you are basically shit out of luck. Nice system, right?

In the meantime, Hubby and I were talking about how once Mr.GS turns 26 he may have to rely on government healthcare if he can't get a health insurance  policy through a job or if an individual private-policy-insurance will be so costly as to be unaffordable. Part of me is happy that he will have some kind of  healthcare but another part of me is very worried about what they will give him, how they will respect him and who will fight for him against the government if need be.

Governments have a finite amount of money to spend on anything including healthcare. There will have to be choices made and these choices will be made by bureaucrats. Will they decide that a youngman with autism, no matter how high functioning, will have no right to certain health needs because of his disability? This is already  de rigueur for some medical procedures, like transplants. Honestly, this is a system I am not looking forward to having Mr. GS  join, but not sure what the alternative would be though, or even if one exists.


Friday, October 4, 2013

A Bit of Female Reality

My hot flashes have taken on a life of their own....just sayin'

OK yes its a Poise commercial but hey its funny and oh so true.

Meanwhile here is the fun parts of what being a woman is all about....

And then Britney's new video  came on the screen. WHAT THE HELL IS THIS:

No, I'm not old, nor a prude nor have problems with human sexuality. I just remembered when it wasn't cool for a proud and strong woman to call herself a Bitch, wear leather, and prance around like a dominatrix.

It was about inner strength, fortitude and the right to be respected in society for who you are beyond your gender. I was raised in this era:

Now doesn't that commercial say sexy, strong and self-reliant? No whips, chains, sadomasochistic crap needed.

Yes I know I talk about embracing your inner-bitch. But its a metaphor for standing your ground, fighting the good fight and not caring what someone else thinks when you do what you need to do in order to protect your children. Hopefully, you had figured that out already.


Tuesday, October 1, 2013

It's All About Me....Hey once every 15 years for 5 minutes is really not selfish...

I've been tagged by abstract Lucas to play this lovely game letting everyone know just what is deep in your parent's heart. I love it. We so rarely give credence to how we feel, who we are and what we would like to see for ourselves that it is nice to remember that we too are people. That's also why I started the blog The Rediscovered Self. As I write in my welcome:

Meanwhile, I noticed an important issue along the way. As I was busy saving my children I forgot to save myself. So this blog is dedicated to the parents of all special needs children. We need to remind ourselves that we too are entitled to as much of a future as our children. Heck we are even entitled to a right now as well. 

Here are the answers to the game:

1) First off tell us your name (nice easy one there):

My name is Elise Ronan. Well that's not my real name. It's a pen-name that I use to try to protect my sons' privacy as much as possible. And yes I know in the world of hackers anyone could find out who I really am. But hey I try to respect the boys' wishes even as I write about their adventures in the world of autism.

2) I live at home with…

I live with the boys, the hubby and three dogs who vacillate between loving adorable pets and the American version of the chupacabra.

3) My favourite thing to do is…

Write on the computer or read a really good book.

4) My favourite thing to eat is…

chocolate..but of course

5) When I get cross I…

Am a total bitch...stay away or wear chainmail.

6) Sometimes I worry because…

 I'm an autism parent-warrior....self-explanatory.

7) My favourite book is…

Exodus by Leon Uris; The Sunne in Splendour by Sharon Kay Penman

8) My favourite toy is (easy now)…

my computer or iPhone

9) I dislike…


10) When I grow up I want to be…

Unfortunately I haven't figured this one out just yet.


I am going to tag:

Dot at Our Adventure with Riley.
Barbara Dittrich at Comfort in the Midst of Chaos

When you are done go to the original instigating mom, Cold Tea & Smelly Nappies, and add your post to the linky.


WW2 Vets Retake the WW2 Memorial in DC for the People

Arriving at the WW2 Memorial in DC today, these Honor Flight participants found the World War 2 Memorial shuttered due to the government shutdown. Well they decided to hell with the barricades and went right into the memorial anyway. Heck these are the men that landed at Omaha Beach and stormed ashore at Iwo Jima. Did the government really think a few park police gates would keep them away?

No matter who you blame for the infantile nonsense going on in DC, the idea that the monuments that belong to the people are closed is ridiculous. It seems that when things go array in the Capital the ones who pay for it are We the People. The ones that pay the damn taxes. It seems to me that it should be the services that the politicians require that need to be cut first, including all housekeeping staff, cooks, drivers and anything else that makes their lives easier.

h/t Twitchy


UPDATE: Eventually the park police showed up and removed the veterans from the memorial under threat of arrest. According to Honor Flights another group of veteran's from Toledo have been threatened with arrest if they try to come to memorial next week. Do these idiots in Washington understand that this memorial si about these exact same men and not their political fiefdoms?