Thursday, December 29, 2011

The Tables Have Turned

Somewhere along the line, Katelyn has taken upon herself the mothering role.

Last week Don and Chase went to the market to get a Coke but came back with energy drinks instead. You should have seen Katelyn's face when she declared "Daaad, YOU DO NOT need an energy drink!"

So, on our way to Las Vegas this morning, I sent the following picture to Katelyn's phone after Don and I picked up a couple of Monsters at the gas station.



Her only reply back...

"Oh boy oh boy".

The icing on the cake, however, is when I asked Katelyn to proofread this post, she said, "Mommm! Did you really each get your own drink?" and when I answered "Yes" she said, "It's not funny mom. This is serious!"

I just kept laughing.

:)

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Out of the 2010 Archives/ Christmas Brainteasers

The DJ on the radio this morning was playing a game he called "Christmas Realist". He described a realist as a person who would take it literally if someone said "I'd let him eat crackers in my bed any day." or "I've got a lot on my plate." or "Who let the dogs out?"


The DJ read a Christmas song title the way a "realist" might say it and if you knew the answer, you could call in and win a prize. For example: The DJ said " Adorn the Rooms" and a caller answered with "Deck the Halls". Follow?


As I was listening, I thought, "Hey. This is how Cody communicates!" Everything is a guessing game with him. (Too bad I was driving my car at the time. I could've totally kicked butt with all the experience he's given me.)


I decided right then and there that I wanted to blog about this. There's got to be other "Autism mom's and dad's" who are good at this! So...here some of the song titles the radio station used with a few "Codyisms" thrown in:


1) Higher on the Dwelling Peak


2) Zilch Holiday Ash


3) Left in a Trough


4) Frigid the Flurry Guy


5) "I'm excited to see Ho, Ho, Ho!"


6) "Did you get dust up your nose?"


7) Rattle Chimes


8) Elation to the Earth


9) "I will listen to Along Comes a Woman on if it doesn't run out of batteries."


10) Zero Divine Darkness


11) "Don't let the bumble in."


12) Kris Kringle Infant



Answers-



1) Up on the Housetop


2) O Christmas Tree


3) Away in a Manger


4) Frosty the Snowman


5) "I'm excited to see Santa Claus!"


6) "Did you sneeze?"


7) Jingle Bells


8) Joy to the World


9) 'I will listen to Chicago on my iPod."


10) O Holy Night


11) "Don't let the bee in."


12) Santa Baby





Please leave a comment and let me know me how well you did, even if you don't have a child with Autism :)

Friday, December 16, 2011

Happy 20th Birthday Katelyn!



Katelyn, even though I didn't make this video, it is everything I would say to you (so pretend I did)...and yes, I know this is the edited version of Pink's song, but I would have considered posting it even if it wasn't. THAT's how much I love you.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Some Days are Just Better than Others

Remember last week when I posted a note from Cody's Day Program telling my husband and me what a joy Cody is to have around (click here)? Well, this is the note he came home with today...





Sunday, December 11, 2011

Chicago at Christmas Time

...and I'm not talking about the city.

Those of you who read my blog faithfully know about Cody's obsession with the band Chicago (see this post ), so you will understand why I am delighted that Cody's aunt Cindy loaned him this Cd...


I uploaded Chicago Christmas to Cody's iPod. Now he can listen to two of his favorite things, Chicago and Christmas music, at the same time. It's a win, win situation. Cody is content and I don't have to listen to Chicago over and over and over.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Looking at Christmas Lights NASCAR Style

Cody likes to "look" at Christmas lights (see this post ), so Don and I decided to grab some holiday Cd's and take him out this evening.

When I was a child, I use to enjoy looking at Christmas lights, but my parents knew how to go about it. They would bypass commercial areas and drive up and down residential streets, slowing to a crawl when coming to a home that had lights.

My husband, on the other hand, does not do that. Don's idea of taking in Christmas lights is to drive down the main roads, which are usually non-residential, to a particular destination. Then, when we arrive in the neighborhood he has in mind, he drives 30 miles an hour (I'm not kidding. I looked at the speedometer). Now, I realize 30 miles an hour is slow IF YOU'RE ON A HIGHWAY OR FREEWAY, but not when you are in a residential area trying to catch a glimpse of homes that have been decorated for the holidays.

Year after year after year, I have tried to help Don understand the process of looking at Christmas lights and year after year after year, he forgets and does the same thing. I don't get it.

This is what I see from the passenger seat when Don is driving...


...unless I blink and then I miss the display in its entirety.


Photograph by David Wagner @ publicdomainpictures.net

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Chase's Special Nativity Arrangement

I really don't have space in my living room to display a nativity, but I do have a large kitchen island, so I decided to place it there this year. I figure it's better than not displaying a nativity at all.

Anyway, Chase spent some time at the house this afternoon and when Chase is here, he usually does something to leave his mark. Today he chose to move my nativity pieces around.



He told me Mary, Joseph, the Wise Men and the Shepherds are giving the animals quality time with baby Jesus.



I swear, my children are weird.

Free Printables for Children with Autism

As I was searching the Internet for some free printable check registers this morning, I came across a blog that not only has free printables, but a special needs page with several educational ideas/helps for children with autism. The name of the blog is Free Printable Fun . Those of who may be interested, just click on the link.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

I Freakin' Love December



'Tis true. Read my profile. Celebrating Christmas is one of my favorite things in the world.

It's going to be a terrific month!

On a side note, I think blogger should work on getting a Christmas font.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

A Touch of Christmas Decor

I came across the most simple Christmas decoration on Pinterest made with a plastic frame, pretty paper and a few embellishments, but I made a mistake and forgot to pin it. Remembering the general idea, I browsed through some old Christmas cards until I found one I liked, glued the card onto some scrap paper and slipped it into a cheap frame that I picked up at Big Lots for a dollar. I then embellished the outside of the frame with a few 3D stickers I had tucked away in my holiday crafting supplies.

Here is the finished product. Not bad for a buck, right?


The picture kinda sucks and you can't really see the 3D effect. Sorry.

Speaking of Christmas decor, Katelyn and I went to Tai Pan Trading this past week and I spotted these...




I thought of a variety of cute ways I could arrange the blocks, so I went ahead and purchased them. However, when I got home and took off the protective plastic, this is what happened...




The darn blocks DO NOT come apart. So much for the cute little horizontal arrangements I had in my head!

Anyway, I ended up placing the fixed, vertical blocks in my window sill next to this little bird.


I suppose it's kinda cute? 


If any of you Pinterest fans are familiar with the resource of my frame inspiration, please let me know so I can give the person proper credit.

Friday, November 25, 2011

There's a Teeny Weeny Something that's so Small You Almost Can't See It

Wanna know what's fun? Running errands in the car, on black Friday, while listening to Cody sing this song, word for word. The only exception...Cody added "there's a teeny weeny something that's so small you almost can't see it" after flee on the wing.



Do any of you other moms want to run away with me? Barbados is sounding really good about now. :)

Monday, November 21, 2011

Autism and Chit-Chat

The following conversation took place between Cody and me this evening...

Cody- Do you remember that squeaky ride at the Lane County Fair?

Me- No. There were a lot of rides at the fair. I don't remember a squeaky one though.

Cody- I wish your memory was as good as mine.

Me- Me too, but sometimes I'm glad it isn't.

Cody- How come?

Me- Because there are things that I'd rather forget, like times you were in the hospital and stuff.

...long pause

Cody- I just as soon forget taking temperatures in my butt.

I suppose that shows his age. When did they stop using rectal thermometers? The late '80's?

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Etnies and Autism Speaks

I was looking at shoes online and learned that Etnies, a brand my boys have worn for years, has teamed up with Autism Speaks. Please take a moment and look at the "Autism Speaks" shoes on etnies.com. A portion of the proceeds of Etnies Autism Speaks Collection will be donated to Autism Speaks to help raise awareness, fund autism research and develop resources and treatments for those on the spectrum.

I also encourage you to watch a short video on Etnies Blog about the co-branded footwear.



These shoes would make terrific gifts for Christmas. I know Cody will be getting at least one pair from Santa.

Go Etnies!!!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Tip for Putting on Mascara

Do NOT separate mascara clumps with a sewing needle.

I have been doing this for as long as I can remember and never had a problem... until this morning. Two or three of my eyelashes were clumping together, so I pulled out my needle to separate them and accidently poked myself in the eye.

This is what I looked like after the doctor dropped orange dye into my eye...



You can see in the picture that the skin under my eye is stained and my make-up is trashed.

Here's the good news:

1) I found out that eyes heal quickly, so the pain should go away after a couple of days.

2) The eye doctor gave me some sample anti-biotic and lubricating eye drops, therefore I'm saving money by not having to buy prescriptions.



3) Dr. Croft made me feel a little bit better by informing me that he sees women in his office about once a week for the very same thing.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Autism: Cody's Fixation on Chuck and Larry

Cody, my thirty year old who enjoys watching Sesame Street Old School and Saturday morning cartoons on Qubo, loves the movie I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry. For those of you who may not be familiar with this film, it is about best friends, Chuck and Larry (Adam Sandler and Kevin James), who are fire fighters in Brooklyn. The jist of it is, Chuck owes Larry (a widower) for saving his life and Larry ends up cashing in on Chuck's favor by asking Chuck to pose as his gay partner so Larry's kids will get his pension.


I don't recall the first time Cody watched "Chuck and Larry", as he calls it. We must have rented it initially, but Casey ended up giving the movie to Cody a couple of Christmases ago. Cody will sit through the entire movie just so he can hear the music they play at the end during the credits. When I ask Cody what he likes about Chuck and Larry, he says "Pretty in Pink and Vanilla Ice's virgin of it." I'm guessing he means version, not virgin.


The other day Katelyn, trying to keep Cody entertained, asked him if he'd like to watch a movie. Of course he wanted to watch Chuck and Larry. Katelyn tried her hardest to persuade Cody to watch anything else. She read off every single DVD in the house, even putting a special emphasis on Jungle Book because she wanted to watch that one, but there was no talking Cody out of it.

I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry is one of Adam Sandler's less raunchy movies. Regardless, it is full of sexual innuendo and Cody's siblings think it's freakin' hilarious that their blind, autistic brother, who has no idea what the movie is all about, finds it so entertaining.

Friday, November 11, 2011

This is What Happens When Cody and His Dad Pair Up

Cody has a Speak and Spell. For those of you who may not know what a Speak and Spell is, here's a picture...



The Speak and Spell is very educational but awfully LOUD. Cody thinks it's hilarious to ask if he can sleep with it. I always tell him "No. If you accidentally turn it on during the night, it will wake everybody up." His dad, on the other hand, jokingly goes behind my back and tells Cody "Go ahead Code. I don't care if you sleep with it." knowing full well that Cody won't go against my wishes.

Night before last, we went through the aforementioned ritual, but this time, when I wasn't around, Don told Cody to go hide the Speak and Spell in his bedroom, under his pillow. Later on, I walked by Cody's room and this is what I saw...



The Speak and Spell was indeed under the pillow, but I think maybe Don needs to work with Cody on hiding things a little more discreetly. :)


Click on Hide and Seek the Autistic Way if you'd like to read more about Cody and hiding.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Pomegranate Jelly



Ingredients-


5 cups pomegranate juice
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 1/4 package powdered pectin
7 cups white cane sugar


1- Make the Juice. Cut open a pomegranate and submerge it in a large bowl filled with water. Remove the seeds underwater; they will sink to the bottom while the white membrane holding them together will float. Discard the peel and membranes. Strain the seeds and put them in a blender. Pulse the blender so that the seeds are broken up. Place a mesh strainer (I actually placed cheesecloth inside a plastic strainer) over a bowl and pour the seed mixture through the strainer. Use a rubber spatula to help press the pulp against the strainer as to extract as much juice as possible.

*This is a good stopping point if you are tired or short on time. The juice will keep in the refrigerator or freezer for a few days, until you are ready to make the jelly.


*If this is your first time water-bath canning, you may want to watch the YouTube clip below before you start. It is very helpful.


2- Prepare canning jars. Seep the clean, empty canning jars in boiling water (the video says not to bring the water to a boil, but I do) for several minutes. Boil a few cups of water in a separate kettle and pour over the lids in a small bowl to sterilize.


3- Measure pomegranate juice and lemon juice in a 6-quart pan. Add pectin, stir and place over high heat. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly to prevent scorching. Reach a full rolling boil, that cannot be stirred down, and add sugar. Boil hard for exactly 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Let stand for a minute and skim off foam.


4- Fill jars to 1/2" of the top. Wipe rims clean. Screw on 2-piece lids.


5- Finish canning. Place jelly jars, not touching, on a rack in a tall pot of boiling water. The water should cover the top of the jars by one to two inches. Boil for 5 to 15 minutes, depending on your altitude, then remove from the water and let jars cool. Check seals, the lids should be sucked down (you'll hear a popping noise as the jelly cools). Let the jars sit overnight. Jars will keep on the shelf, but need to be refrigerated once they are opened.


Yield - 8-9 half pints.



Friday, November 4, 2011

The Right Things to Say to Parents of Special Needs Kids

Mark and Bonnie's blog, The Fragile X Files, is one of my favorites. When I read their post, The RIGHT Things to Say to Parents of Special Needs Kids, I knew I had to share. I hope you will click on the link and take a minute to read it.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Possible Passion for Pinterest

Thanks to the girls at Carolina HeartStrings I am now a member of Pinterest.

Pinterest, an online pinbaord that allows you to organize and share all of the things you love, has taken a distinctive approach to get people interested in the site – you have to be invited to participate. You can request an invitation right on the site, but it takes a long time before you will get one. You are better off doing what I did and ask a friend who is already on Pinterest to send you an invitation.

If Pinterest sounds like something you would be interested in, the following link will take you to Pleasant Home, one of my favorite blogs, where you can pick up some great tips and pointers:

A Little HOW TO on Pinterest

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

25 Ways to Tie a Scarf in 4.5 Minutes

Here ya go ladies! 'Tis the season to wear scarves and I found the most genius video on YouTube. You can thank me by leaving comments and following me on Google Friend Connect or Networked Blogs. :)

Monday, October 31, 2011

Cody's Got My Back...Kinda

Between Don suffering from Restless Leg Syndrome, Cody thinking he's nocturnal and everybody around here snoring, sleep doesn't come easy at our house.


Last night was no exception. I have been sick, so Don volunteered to sleep on the couch and let me have the bedroom to myself. When I got up around 2:00 a.m. to check on Cody, he was awake (of course), so I had him go to the bathroom. Then I decided, instead of getting up and down to check on Cody all night, it would be sooo much easier on me to just put him on Don's side of the bed. So that's exactly what I did.

During breakfast this morning, this short, yet comical conversation took place between Cody and his dad...


Don- "Hey Cody. Did mom snore last night?"

Cody- "Ya. A little bit, but I didn't hear her."

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Dinner-in-a-Pumpkin Drama

Every October, when I fix Dinner-in-a-Pumpkin for my family, I think about the first time I ever made it.


About fifteen years ago, I was a member of a women's group that met once a month for dinner, crafts and conversation. I was serving on the food committee and one of our members threw out the idea of serving Dinner-in-a-Pumpkin for the month of October. My responsibility was to find women who would volunteer to cook the dish in their homes, provided I supply the recipe and the pumpkins.


Several ladies came forward to help, but one woman, in particular, stands out in my mind. Gayla. Read on and you will understand.


Gayla told me she'd be happy to help, so I delivered the pumpkin, along with the recipe, to her home and left them with her teenage daughter. Later that evening, I received a phone call from Gayla informing me that the pumpkin was "just too big" (each pumpkin was 5 lbs). So, humoring her, I said I would be happy to come by the next day and exchange pumpkins. She said she would not be home, but she would leave the (apparently humongous) pumpkin on her doorstep for me to swap with a smaller one.


The next day, the phone rang and it was Gayla on the other end, letting me know that the pumpkin was the "wrong type" and she refused to make the dish in it. (Bare in mind that the other lady volunteers had the same size and type of pumpkins and were OKAY with it.)

Time was running out. The event was that very night and clearly I was getting nowhere with Gayla. However, she was doing a terrific job of getting out of her assignment as well as making me feel like sh*t.

Exasperated, I told Gayla that I would cook her pumpkin. I mean, why not? I was already cooking one. Surely I could squeeze another pumpkin in my oven (insert eye roll here)?! Gayla didn't hang up before reminding me, one more time, that the dinner was not going to taste good using the "wrong type" of pumpkin. 


That evening, Sharon, a dear friend of mine who also served on the food committee and had lent a listening ear when I needed to vent, informed/warned me that Gayla had arrived. We were surprised she had the audacity to show up,  but surprised isn't the word I'd use to describe how we felt when Gayla was the first one in line for food! I. Kid. You. Not.

Anyway, with that memory shared, here is my Dinner-in-a-Pumpkin recipe...

1 and 1/2 lbs. lean ground beef
1/4 c. chopped  celery
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/4 tea. salt

Cook together until celery and onion are tender.

1 (5 lb) pumpkin
1/4 c. soy sauce
2 TBS. brown sugar
1 (4 oz.) can sliced mushrooms, drained
1 can Cream of Chicken Soup
2 cups hot cooked rice

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lightly grease a 10 inch circle in center of baking sheet. Set aside.

Prepare pumpkin by removing seeds and pulp.


Combine ground beef mixture, soy sauce, mushrooms, soups and rice in pan or large bowl. Spoon into pumpkin. Replace top of pumpkin and bake on prepared baking sheet.

Check pumpkin after 1 hour. Continue baking until pumpkin is tender when pierced with fork.

When serving, dish out pumpkin with the casserole.

Recipe will feed 6-8 people

Friday, October 28, 2011

New Friend Fridays!

I love discovering new blogs and what better way than linking up to a blog hop?!

Here are the rules:

Follow The Trendy Treehouse via Google Friend Connect

Grab their Follow Me Fridays button for your sidebar

Follow Snippets 'N Stuff via Google Friend Connect

Link up to your blog home page

Please Do Not link up specific posts, shops or giveaways

Visit at least 3 other link ups. Leave a meaningful comments and share with them that you found them from Follow Me Fridays

Do Not write - I follow back when linking up - It will be removed!

Family Friendly Blogs only - All others will be removed!

Have fun meeting new friends and enter your blog below.


A Mother Goose Halloween


My daughter and her friends dressed up as 'The Three Little Kittens who lost their mittens' for a Halloween dance last night. This morning, when I asked her how everything went, she said, "Fine, but not many people understood the mittens part. I guess kids these days don't know nursery rhymes."

There is truth in Katelyn's statement. Working with children over the years, I have noticed the same thing. Parents aren't taking time to teach their children nursery rhymes. I guess Mother Goose is not as popular as she once was. Personally, I feel it is important for children to learn nursery rhymes and here is why...

1) Rhyming is a literacy concept that Kindergarten children are tested on.

2) When children hear nursery rhymes, they hear the sounds vowels and consonants make and learn how to put these sounds together to make words.

3) They also practice voice inflection, as well as the rhythm of language.

4) In nursery rhymes, children hear new words that they would not hear in everyday conversing.

 5) Nursery rhymes usually tell a story with a beginning, a middle and an end, showing children that events happen in sequence. So, for those of you who may not be familiar with 'The Three Little Kittens', you may want to click here and become acquainted with some early children's literature.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Pies, Pastries and Pumpkins Puzzle

Jigsaw puzzles are nostalgic for me. My parents would often set one up on a card table for the whole family to work on. They even glued, framed and hung a huge puzzle of the Grand Canyon on their living room wall. It proved to be a great conversation piece back in the 1970's.

For a few years now, I have purchased Christmas jigsaw puzzles for my own family to work on during the month of December. This year, however, I decided to do something a little different. I bought a puzzle with an autumn theme and set it up the first week of October.



I also decided to buy this and try it out...



I haven't determined if I am a fan of the Stow and Go. The puzzle pieces were hard to move around on the fabric.

It took awhile, but we eventually finished the puzzle...



Now I am trying to decide if I should purchase a new Christmas puzzle. If I do, it will definitely be Ravensburger brand, not SunsOut like the one above. This one was far too difficult, thanks to some oddly shaped pieces.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Pizza!

Okay. What you're about to read has absolutely nothing to do with pizza, but I asked Cody what I should title this post and "Pizza!" is what he said.

Today happens to be my husband's birthday. Don was born six years before me, in the year 1958. I enjoy joking with him about being "old" and, after reading the things that happened that year, I realize that I am completely justified. Don is old (hehe).

This is what I found...

 
NASA (North American Space Agency) is formed

14 year old Bobby Fischer wins the United States Chess Championship
 
Toyota and Datsun Cars go on sale in the US
 
The US Military said it will be possible with satellites orbiting the earth to make detailed maps from space
 
The Wham-O company introduces the Hula Hoop; over 100 million are sold
 
Popular Films-
The Bridge on the River Kwai
South Pacific
Gigi
King Creole
Vertigo

Popular Singers-
Elvis Presley
Billie Holiday
Ricky Nelson
Frank Sinatra
The Everly Brothers
Ella Fitzgerald
Jerry Lee Lewis

Popular TV Programs-
Candid Camera
The Ed Sullivan Show
Come Dancing
The Jack Benny Show
Panorama
Alfred Hitchcock Presents

Happy Birthday Babe! Oh...and don't feel bad. You're in good company. Tanya Tucker and Jamie Lee Curtis were also born in '58. Hey! Maybe you could download Delta Dawn on iTunes and listen to it while you eat some Activia? :)

Friday, October 21, 2011

What Do Cody and Chris Farley Have in Common?

Like many individuals with autism, Cody has an amazing memory. Not only can Cody remember people, but he remembers places and circumstances from as far back as infancy.

Recently Cody said to me, "Remember playing with Phyllis? She did Eency Weency Spider and Hickory Dickory Dock. Then she made me crawl." Phyllis was an employee from the school for the blind who made weekly visits to our home after Cody was born. Her job was to teach me how to teach Cody important things that a typical baby learns by sight; such as eating, crawling, and even how to play. Phyllis worked with Cody and me until Cody was four years old, then our family moved to another state. We haven't seen her since, but Cody recalls things about Phyllis as if we just saw her yesterday. It's mind boggling really.

Not only does Cody have an amazing memory, but he remembers in great detail. For instance, he can tell you exactly where he was and what he was doing during specific occasions. 

Multiple times a day, Cody will ask, "Remember...?" And, if you don't remember (heaven forbid), he will say, "How come your memory is not as good as mine?" or "Mannn, I wish your memory was as good as mine."

Cody's trips down memory lane often make me think of the Chris Farley Show on SNL. As Cody would say, "Remember him?"

Thursday, October 20, 2011

POSH

Cody and I were sitting in the living room watching The Office tonight when, out of the blue, he leaned forward and said "Joseph was calling someone a POSH today."

Being the terrific mother that I am (hehe), I did what I always do and played his autistic mind game. I asked "What is a POSH Cody?"

He replied, "It's like dad says...a piece of crap."

I questioned Cody, "Joseph called someone a piece of shit?"

"Yes" he said.

I continued to watch The Office, making a mental note to find out who Joseph is.

True to his character, about five minutes later Cody continued the conversation by volunteering this information...

"He called me a POSH. He was teasing me."

I probably should find out exactly what goes on at Cody's day program and if uttering profanity is an everyday occurance, but right now, I just don't GASH (give a shit).

Butterfinger Chex Treats

Ingredients-

6 cups Rice Krispies

5 cups Rice Chex Cereal

1 cup Wheat Chex Cereal

2 (10 oz bags) miniature marshmallows

1/2 cup butter

16 fun size Butterfinger candy bars, chopped

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

4 Tablespoons peanut butter


Directions-

Lightly spray a 12 x 17 baking sheet with cooking spray.

Mix Rice Krispies and Chex cereals together in a large bowl.

















In a large pan, melt butter over medium heat.

Add marshmallows. Stir until melted.

Pour in cereal mixture. Stir until almost combined, then stir in chopped Butterfinger candy bars.

















Press lightly into your prepared baking sheet.

Combine chocolate chips and peanut butter in a glass measuring cup. Microwave in 30 second increments, stirring between each until melted. (Be careful not to overcook.)

Drizzle on top of your treats.

Let the chocolate set and then cut into squares.


















Makes approximately 3 -4 dozen.


I found this recipe at Cookies and Cups and adapted it a bit. Check out Shelly's blog for more delectable desserts  .

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Monday, October 17, 2011

Why Not Skirt the Issue?

Rather than answering "yes" or "no" to questions he is uncomfortable with, Cody tries to sidestep confrontation by saying "a little bit". It's his way of avoiding getting caught with his hand in the cookie jar, so to speak.

Allow me to share some actual dialogue.

Me- Have you been picking at your socks, Code?
Cody- A little bit.

Me- Gross Cody! Are you drinking the pool water?!!
Cody- A little bit.

Don- Do you have the death grip on my arm?
Cody- A little bit.

Me- Did you just sit on the Speak and Spell?
Cody- Yes I did...a little bit.

Me- Did you just call Zach, Nate?
Cody- A little bit.

It seems to me that Cody uses the phrase "a little bit" A LOT more than a little bit. :)

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Changing Priorities

One of my dearest friends Annie over at Adventures in Oz wrote a post that included a video by Steven Covey. As I watched the video, I realized that this is how I feel about blogging. I love, love, LOVE blogging, but sometimes I let it come before the important things in my life. I enjoy staying connected to my blogging friends all over the world, but realize that I have relationships right here around me that could use a little nurturing.

Annie asked me a thought provoking question yesterday. She said, "Have you thought about what you'd like to leave behind for your children and grandchildren when you're gone?" Then she got me thinking maybe, just maybe, I could make quilts and scrapbooks for them, both hobbies that I enjoy but have fallen by the wayside.

Since I'm on the morbid subject of dying, I definitely need to make exercise and eating healthy a higher priority (click here and here), or I might not even be around long enough to meet those future grandchildren.

My point is, I will keep reading your wonderful blogs and writing my own posts. I just may not be able to do it every day, because I have to take care of the big rocks first. No comprende? Watch the video...

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Cody's Idea of Foul Language

Don, Cody and I went out for fast food tonight and while we were waiting in line at the drive-thru, Cody kept saying, "Cody's a dipstick OB. Cody's a dipstick OB. Cody is a dipstick OB." (For some reason, he has been talking in first person lately.)

Finally he annoyed me enough to ask, "Cody! What IS a dipstick OB?"  and this was his answer...

"A dipstick OB is like a SOB, you know?"

Cody was calling himself a dipstick of a bitch. I think he's got the dipstick part right, but I'm not too fond of the beeotch part. :)

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Witches' Brew

Remember my post about Dr. Jeans Banana Dance? Well, here is the song that gets stuck in my head at this time of year...



Gotta love Kindergarten!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

11 Things that Make Me Happy

Remember how Oprah hosted her "favorite things" episodes every year? Well, I have favorite things too and I am fairly certain that mine are more realistic to the average American. Although I cannot give these items to my "audience" of readers, I can tell you what they are and explain why I like them so very much.

Here are 11 of my favorite things in no particular order:

1) Magic Erasers. They clean nearly everything. I've used them on my walls, kitchen sink, glass stove top and even the desks at school.

2) Caldesene Baby Powder. This stuff is miraculous. My step-sister told me about this when Chase was a baby over 25 years ago. It clears up even the worst diaper rash. It's much better than Desitin or Butt Paste.

3) Mary Kay Hand Cream. A friend of mine gave me a tube of this when I was recuperating from surgery. Since it only takes a dab to soften your hands, a little bit goes a long, long way.

4) Cold Sores Begone. The single best thing ever for preventing cold sores at the very first tingle. I swear by this stuff. I always have one on hand at home and in my purse.

5) Bosch Washer and Dryer. The best thing my husband ever bought, with the exception of our home and car. (I will even put these appliances before my wedding ring, but don't tell him that.) The dryer dries crazy fast and the washer has all kinds of features, including a delayed start. I get excited just talking about these magnificent beauties.

6) Victoria's Secret Lotions. My favorite? Love Spell.

7) Saran Wrap. In my opinion, this clings much better than Glad Wrap.

8) Scentsy Warmers and Wax. A wickless alternative to candles. Scentsy offers a large variety of fragrances as well as attractive warmers, including small plug-in warmers that are perfect in the bathroom.

9) Insulated Cups. A must have for Coke addicts like me. I have found insulated cups at Wal-Mart, Target, Big Lots, Kohls, and Bed Bath and Beyond.

10) Oral-B Advantage Complete Whole Mouth Clean Toothbrush. Wow. That's a mouthful, isn't it? When I first used this toothbrush it felt a little strange on the inside of my cheeks, but I became accustomed to it. This particular brush literally cleans your entire mouth, not just your teeth and gums. I highly recommend it!

11) 5 REACT Chewing Gum. Don and I rented an Acadia to drive to California a few years ago. The previous renters had left a pack of this gum in the vehicle, so we tried it. I am not big on fruity flavors, but I've tried all of the mints. This gum keeps its flavor for a long time and does wonders for your breath.

That's my list! Please click on the links if you are interested in any of the products and if you have feedback, I'd love to hear it.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Baseball and Patriotism: Cody is 100% American!



This is a photo of Cody standing with his hand, or in his case hands, over his heart during the National Anthem at the beginning of the AL Championship Series between Texas and Detroit.

It doesn't matter where Cody is, if he hears the National Anthem playing, he's going to stand up, even if it is in his own living room. How patriotic is that?!

For some reason, Cody enjoys baseball and even though he can't see, he loves to play catch. It makes me wonder how athletic Cody might have been if he wasn't born with disabilities.

Anyway, about an hour into the game, the following conversation took place between Cody and his dad:

Don- Hey Cody! How about you let me watch Survivor on the DVR?

...long, long pause

Don- Are you going to answer me?

Cody- (In a voice with a hint of annoyance) I'm thinkin' about it!

Finally, at the top of the 4th inning, Don convinced Cody the game would still be going when Survivor was over, so he reluctantly agreed.

It was just as well because the rain came and delayed the game anyway.

Epilepsy in Autism

I came across a blog post yesterday about epilepsy in autism. Since my son Cody has both, it really caught my attention. Click here if you would like to read about the study.

Since we are talking about seizures, the following are posts on my blog that may be of interest:

First Aid for Seizures

What is SUDEP?

Autism and Vitamins

Today I Cry

Friday, October 7, 2011

Maybe I Want to be Booed

The idea behind Halloween Boo-ing is simple. You make up a plate or basket of treats, sneak to your neighbor's house, knock on the door and run away, leaving the treats on their doorstep. It's acceptable doorbell ditching, really. Once you've been Booed, you display a sign on your door or window so neighbors can tell who has already received treats and who hasn't.

The game is simple and easy for everyone in the neighborhood to play, but our family hasn't been Booed in years. In fact, one year we started the game by Boo-ing a couple of different families, but it never got back to us. The people in our neighborhood tend to skip those of us that don't have small children. I am sure they assume that older people don't want to be bothered and maybe that is the case with some, but not all. Believe it or not, people in their 40's are capable of running and hiding in bushes. :)

Anyway...If you would like to start this game in your neighborhood, here are three different
websites that have free printable Boo signs and instructions:

Party NV

The TomKat Studio

Anders Ruff

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Halloween Potion Bottles

Other than increasing mental ability, overcoming fatigue, alleviating stomach aches, quenching thirst and being incredibly  pleasant to the palate, Coca-Cola has yet another benefit. It's called My Coke Rewards.


What does My Coke Rewards have to do with Halloween? Allow me to explain.


Underneath the bottle caps or inside the cardboard cartons of Coca-Cola products is a code that can be entered for points on My Coke Rewards. The points accumulated may be spent in a variety of ways and I chose to spend a few of mine on a subscription to Country Living Magazine.

The October issue of Country Living Magazine has some great ideas for Halloween decor.



This is the photograph that inspired me to make decorative bottles of my own...


I asked my son Chase to bring over some empty liquor bottles from his collection...



then I spray painted a few of them...



and printed Halloween graphics onto sticky labels that I picked up at OfficeMax.


Lastly, I adhered them to the bottles, creating these little works of art...




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