A Modern Day Fairy Tale: September 2012

Friday, September 28, 2012

InstaFriday {9/28}

First of all, let me start this post by saying: Welcome to all my lovely new followers! I'm happy to have you here and I hope you all enjoy my little blog!

Now onto InstaFriday...lots of photos to share today!


What better way to start this post than with some adorable drawings from Shaun!?
The top photo is Mr Potato Head, and the bottom is Percy the Train.
I may be a little biased of course, but I happen to think he's super talented for a 5 year old. We are only recently discovering this little talent, as in the past (okay, and even still now), he tries to force everyone else to write, draw or color for him rather than do it himself. To say he always keeps me guessing would be a complete understatement!


The boy behind the art. My precious Shaun.
How lucky am I that I get to see this sweet face every single day!?



Did you know Saturday is National Coffee Day?
I didn't either until a few days ago, but it's certainly a holiday I could get behind. But I actually took this photo before I knew about that...I decided the K-Cups needed organized. Sadly, I cannot drink the majority of this since it's caffeinated, but I have my own too!



Earlier this week, Shaun came home from school and the first words out of his mouth were, "You need to write ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ." He's often telling me I need to write things, but this was a new one and I had no idea where he was going with it, but once inside he handed me his Thomas book and instructed me to write it again. Once that was done, I was told to write Mr. Spell. Then it made sense! If you've seen Toy Story, I'm sure you understand!!


An outfit from this past week. I was trying something different with a plaid shirt over a maxi dress...not sure if it really worked, but it was comfortable at least! Thoughts?


Last Friday, Shaun came home from school with this book called, 'No, David!' Such the perfect book for Shaun! It's about a little boy who jumps on furniture, makes a lot of messes (and noise), runs outside naked and just generally doesn't listen to his mommy very well...I think it could have seriously been written about my boy! It was a bit of an easy read for him, but he loved it and it's hard to find a book that holds his attention so I'll take it!!


If you've followed for awhile, you've probably seen me mention pumpkin muffins once or twice...or a hundred times. These are my absolute favorite! I may have added more white chocolate than the original recipe called for...but they're muffins, so they're still healthy right? Right...that's what I'll tell myself anyway!!


I know, you were dying for another look at this sweet boy, weren't you?


I decided now was a good a time as any to bring out the Halloween warmers! I love this one. Though I have to be honest, I'm much more looking forward to decorating for Christmas! One holiday at a time though, right?



Have I mentioned my dislike of storms? Well, we had a bit of a hail storm Friday night. It actually didn't last too long, and had apparently weakened by the time it reached us (some places were reporting golf ball size hail!), but the ground was still covered. No damage here, thankfully, but I'm still not a fan!


Last week, I posted about the Starbucks decaf coffee I'd finally found...I finally tried it this week! And it was delicious!! Actually, probably the best K-Cup I've tried so far, even with the caffeine! 


Breakfast Hashbrown Casserole. One side with ham for the boys, the other side meatless for me. It was delicious! And easy! I'll definitely be making this one again!!


 This is a bad picture, but the best I could get...it was nighttime and Shaun was using me as a table. If you can't tell, that's a screwdriver in his hand, and yes he is taking Buzz Lightyear apart! Quite successfully I might add. He has such a curious mind, it's fun to watch him work!

life rearranged

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Followers To Friends Blog Party!!

This week, I was asked to participate as a co-host in the Followers To Friends Blog Party!! How exciting! If you've never participated in a blog hop before, now's a great time to start. Blog hops are a great way to discover new blogs to read, as well as allowing you to share your blog with others. Each hop is usually a little different, but here are the rules for this one! Enjoy! (And if you're coming over from the hop-welcome!!)



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Monday, September 24, 2012

I'm a Crappy Mom!

Have you seen these posts floating around the blog world? Apparently, it all started with this photo:


I didn't see the original post, but apparently someone (or multiple someones) did not get what the picture was really saying, and a heated debate followed. Like I said, I didn't see that particular post myself, but I have seen a lot of parenting debates popping up on my news feed of Facebook lately, and even found myself getting drawn into a few as well. So what makes me a crappy mom?
  • I nursed my son until he was 3.5 years old, until he stopped on his own. I would have continued on longer if he had chosen.
  • And to add to that, I nursed in public...covered, for my own comfort only.
  • Shaun was not given table food until after he turned one...nope, not even mashed potatoes or whipped cream at his first Christmas. Mean mommy! His first table food was in fact his birthday cake at his first birthday party!
  • We try to eat reasonably healthy most of the time...but Shaun's favorite restaurant is still McDonalds...and who am I to deny him his favorite things every now and again?
  • My son runs around only in his underwear 95% of the time. It's not for lack of trying on my part, but he won't keep them on at home, and I've decided to pick and choose my battles...this isn't one of them!
  • And on that note, sometimes he refuses to pee unless he can pee outside on a tree...and sometimes I let him (in the backyard of course!)
  • I don't let Shaun drink soda. Or Kool-Aid. (He has at one point tried a sip of a non-caffeine soda- Sprite, I think...but he didn't like the bubbles anyway...which makes this mommy very happy!)
  • He is NOT on a GFCF diet.
  • Shaun has more toys than one child really needs.
  • I don't carry hand sanitizer at all times, nor do I worry about overly sanitizing everything. 
  • Shaun has his very own Nintendo 3DS, and Wii too. 
  • Shaun was vaccinated, and I do not believe the vaccines caused *HIS* Autism. (You can read more on my thoughts on that here.)
  • We cosleep.
  • Though I've only used it once or twice, we do have a strap that attached to Shaun's wrist and mine when we're out and about (we bought it for one of our cross country train trips). It's a matter of safety for him.
  • I don't let Shaun watch Nickelodeon. 
  • Shaun, at 5 years old, has never been left with a baby-sitter.
  • Sometimes, after it rains, I let Shaun put on his rain boots and jump in the puddles. Why not?
  • I will not medicate my child, even though it's been suggested to help with his hyperness.
  • 95% of Shaun's clothes come from yard sales and resale shops.
  • There are toys scattered all over my house...at all times.
  • I tell Shaun he is the greatest kid in the whole world...every. single. day. Multiple times a day. And I tell him he's the best, and the smartest...and that he CAN do ANYTHING he wants in this world.
  • And I smother him in hugs and kisses and tell him I love him constantly.
The way I see it is, no matter what choices you make in parenting, there is someone who will not agree with you on that decision. Take breastfeeding for example...obviously a very hot debate. You often hear from formula feeding moms that they get crap from nursing moms about their choice not to breastfeed for whatever reasons. On the other side of it, breastfeeding moms are also attacked for that choice...be it extended nursing, or nursing in public...some just find breastfeeding in general to be a disgusting act. Those who know me personally know that I am a strong advocate for breastfeeding in general, as well as extended breastfeeding, and I am always happy to offer advice and support on the subject to those that want it. But I also try not to make others who make a different choice, feel like they are doing wrong either. What worked well for me and my son, and our family is not necessarily what is ideal for all.

 I think so many people tend to forget that just because someone thinks differently than them, does not mean that their thinking is wrong. It's not wrong to have different opinions, or even to share them...but in a respectful manner. Attacking other moms for their decisions is not the way to go about sharing your personal beliefs on any subject. As mothers, we have so many other worries about our children, and the last thing we need is to worry about what other moms think about our decisions for our families. If the child is loved and being well taken care of, isn't that the most important thing? And that's what that picture, and this post is all about. No matter what side we take on these parenting debates, we all love our children just the same.

Feel free to head on over here and share what makes you a (not so) crappy mom!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Sunday Social {9/23}

Sunday Social



1. What is something you have wanted to do but are afraid of?

I'm afraid of a lot, so there are a lot of things I'd probably like to do if I weren't afraid to! I think if I had to choose my top choice, I'd say I would love to be a worship leader, or sing professionally in some way. I love singing, and while I've performed in church, talent shows...even had a small job singing when I was much younger, but I'd love to have the guts to do it on a larger scale...without medication and panic attacks (remember my post a few days ago where I mentioned my high school graduation!?) Having a love of singing, combined with severe social anxiety, not to mention a huge fear of microphones, is completely ironic, don't you think!?


2. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? 

Hmm, being a military family that's hard to say! Obviously, I plan to still be happily married to my wonderful husband...but as far as where we will be living? Who knows! If my husband ends up deciding to go career recruiter, we could still be living somewhere near where we are now...or we could be back in California...or who knows, even Japan (though I doubt that!) As long as we are together, that's really all that matters to me!


3. What are you looking forward to before the end of 2012?

Halloween. Thanksgiving. Christmas. Aside from the holidays, I'm looking forward to having a real Fall and Winter season. We're already seeing the Fall like weather here, which is awesome. I am usually not a fan of winter, but this being Shaun's first time living in the midwest for winter, and his love of snow...I'm really looking forward to his reaction to it all. Living in California, it was always hard to try and explain to him that it would not snow at his house every morning when he would stare out the window and cry for snow. This year, there is actually a chance that could happen, and for his sake I truly hope it does. (Though I've been told even when it does snow, they usually clear the roads pretty quickly so there's not a ton of snow days...where's the fun in that!?)


4. What are your hopes for your blog?

My hopes are that it continues to grow and the people continue to enjoy reading what I have to say. Also, though I feel I've been lacking a bit lately on Autism related posts, I hope to get back to that a bit more once things settle a bit more, and to again help teach others about the reality of Autism and raise awareness for my son.


5. Do you always see yourself living in your current town/city?

I suppose my answer for this kind of goes along with number three. I do enjoy living here. We are the perfect distance to just about everything...close to the hubby's office, Shaun's school, our doctors, Target, etc...but without feeling like we're in town, which is nice! And being only three hours from both sides of the family is a whole lot better than what we had before. If we had to live here forever, I don't suppose I'd be disappointed...but like I said, with the military, we can pretty much assume that moves are inevitable. Plus, we already have plans to build a house when Matt gets out of the Marine Corps, and we know just where we're going to build (one day)...right down the road from his mom in Illinois.


6. What is your morning routine?

I don't think I really have a routine so much. I usually check my e-mail, Facebook, weather, etc first thing as I'm still waking up...I'm not a morning person!! Then once Shaun is awake (generally, not long after me), I spend the rest of my morning (day) chasing after him! No rest for this mommy!!

Friday, September 21, 2012

InstaFriday {9/21}

Is it Friday again, already!? Doesn't it seem like time has just been flying by lately!? Oh what a week this has been! To say it got off to a rough start...well, that would be an understatement!




See what I mean!? Yes, that is our car being towed away. Sunday afternoon, I decided to do a thorough cleaning of the car and pulled it into the garage to vacuum...a few minutes later, it completely died. It wouldn't start, even after the hubby tried to jump start it...nothing. So we had to have it towed away and taken to the shop. (And wouldn't you know this happened on a rainy day...my poor husband had no option but to ride his motorcycle!) Thankfully, it was a quick and easy fix- we just had to replace the battery, but still expensive and unwanted. Could have been worse I guess!


Crockpot Round Steak. I've really been trying to make use of the crockpot more. It's much easier with Matt's unpredictable schedule, but being a vegetarian myself and the boys obviously eating meat, I've found it difficult to find meals we can all enjoy! Any must try crock pot recipes you'd care to share?


Shaun shares his mommy's undying love for cotton candy. Really, who doesn't love it? It's heavenly! (Seriously, I told my hubby I believed the clouds in heaven must be made of cotton candy...how absolutely wonderful would that be? I'll stop there before you all start thinking I've officially gone crazy!)


Trying out my crocheted scarf necklace with a brooch for some added detail. I think I like it!!

I believe on the day this was taken, the high was actually supposed to be 74 (and was actually 50ish at the time, loving this Fall like weather we're having)...but anyway, it's a wonderful song and a great reminder: Sunny with a high of 75 since you took my heavy heart and made it light. It's funny how you find you enjoy your life when you're happy to be alive.



Shauny and Mommy
I love this boy more than anything in this world.
(Even if he won't always cooperate for photos!)


I love coffee. But coffee does not love me. Not just coffee, but caffeine in general. I've been caffeine free on and off since my high school graduation (when I ended up in the ER the night before with anxiety attacks at the thought of singing at the ceremony...true story), but in the past even when I was primarily drinking caffeine free, I wasn't so strict about it...I'd splurge on a coffee here and there, or drink a regular Diet Coke if we were out to eat. But over the last few months, my anxiety level has been ridiculously high, even for me, so I've given it up completely...no caffeine at all! (And it has helped a lot, though my anxiety has still been pretty high.) But with the cooling temps, I've been wanting coffee more and more. Have you even tried to find decaf k-cups? It's not easy! So far I have found only three, and the other two did not sound appealing. While picking up a Salted Caramel Mocha at Starbucks, I decided to ask if they offered any, and found this was the only they had, so I decided to give it a try. I haven't had any yet, but I'm hoping it's delicious!


life rearranged

I hope you all have a wonderful first weekend of Fall!!

(p.s. Please feel free to follow me on Instagram: Follow @randikaye)

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

On Change: Part 2

A few weeks back, for Five Minute Friday, I started to post a little bit about change here, and said I would write more on the subject later. Since then, I have been trying to figure out how to approach the subject without making it seem like I am complaining about my child, or that he is a bad kid. So, I'll just start this post by saying again that I love my son more than anything, and would not trade him for anything in this world. He's my everything. But to be entirely blunt, Autism sometimes sucks. I try to keep a positive attitude about it all, but there are some days where that is harder than others.

As I said in my previous post, changes are hard for individuals with Autism. Before our move, we tried to prepare for it to be a hard transition, but I think even knowing it would happen, I was still shocked at the extent of it. After starting his new school right after moving, the more frequent meltdowns and aggression started. It got to the point where I ended up cutting my hair to keep him from having easy access to pulling it. Again as said in the previous post, he started out in an inclusion class of 20, coming from a much smaller Autism-only class. While the aggression wasn't an issue at school, he was having a lot of other behavioral issues (overly hyper, climbing furniture, running around, fishing in the fishbowl), and they decided that perhaps next year he'd do better in the special education only classroom. Of course this would mean another transition, but if it helped him in the long run, it would be for the better.

When school let out for the summer, things seemed to improve. I honestly thought perhaps starting school right after the move had just been too much for him, and things were on the upswing. Unfortunately, once school started back up again I found that wasn't the case. He hates his new school. His teacher is great, the kids seem nice, but I think he truly just misses everyone from his old school and refuses to give this one a chance...and the aggression and meltdowns started again, worse than ever. This time, his aggression seems to be focused on biting, and let me tell you he bites hard. I posted a picture a few weeks ago of my arm after one such meltdown, and compared to now, that looks like nothing. My one arm is bruised to the point that it hurts with the lightest of touches, and it seems to only get worse as time goes on. When he's happy, he's great, but you just never know what is going to set him into one of those moods- it can be something easy to determine (like 'no, you're not getting a toy') or just completely out of the blue. It's been hard, to say the least. As a mommy, there is nothing I would love to do more than make this easier on him, and it's very frustrating to feel like there is nothing I can do to make him feel better.

Throughout this whole thing, we have been in the process of trying to find an ABA company here. In the past, it has made a tremendous difference for him. Unfortunately, we were finding places that either did not accept Tricare, or did not offer in home services. Because he has a tendency to master skills, etc in a therapy/school type setting, but not carrying them over to home, a center was not really an option that I think would have been most beneficial for him. But I am happy to say that last week, I was finally able to find a company that offers BOTH! At this point, it's a matter of paperwork and waiting on the insurance to go through, but I am hopeful that this company will finally work out and that this is FINALLY the light at the end of the tunnel.

For now I will continue to pray that things finally begin to settle soon, and to let my sweet boy know that I love him unconditionally, even through this rough patch.


(Note: I realize that many do not know the difference between a tantrum and a meltdown, so I found this post that I thought might be helpful in explaining what I am talking about when I talk about meltdowns.)

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Lilla Rose Mystery Host {A Sponsor Offer}

Back in July, I brought you this review and giveaway sponsored by Linda Menke, an independent Lilla Rose consultant. Since bringing you that post, I have continued to use these wonderful products on an almost daily basis...truly so simple (and still cute) for the mom on the go, I wish I could have given you all the giveaway prize...but when Linda contacted me about a mystery hostess party she is hosting, I knew I had to share with all of you!! Mystery host parties are great because you have that chance to get the host rewards without actually having to do the party- and what's particularly great about this one: it's guarenteed at least $450 in orders, so if you win, you'll receive at LEAST $60 in free product! Sounds great to me! If you're interested, here are the details:

Lilla Rose Independent Consultant, Linda Menke, is sponsoring a special Mystery Hostess Party starting Sept 15th and ending at midnight on Sept 29th.  Everyone that orders will have a chance to be the Mystery Hostess and receive all the Hostess Rewards!  In addition, due to a vendor swap also going on this month, the party is guaranteed to earn at least $450 in sales and all other orders will only increase that amount.  This is a great chance to order that new Flexi or other item you’ve been wanting (Check out the Flexi of the Month for Sept. – it’s beautiful) AND, if you are chosen as the Mystery Hostess, you can get lots of Lilla Rose loot for the holidays or for yourself.





Don’t forget that Flexi Clips also make great scarf clips so a great gift idea is to give one with a pretty scarf.  The XS, S, and M sizes are best for scarves.  Also the smaller Flexis and O-Rings make adorable napkin rings and curtain ties as well. 

 To order from the party, Click Here.  Add yourself as a guest by entering your information under “New Guests Register Here.”  From there, simply shop and check-out.  NOTE:  Items ordered through the party will not ship until after the party closes on the 29th.   Then I will select a Mystery Hostess, get the Hostesses Rewards ordered, and close the party.  If you order, be sure to check your e-mail early on Oct 30th as you won’t have more than a few hours to decide what items you want for your Hostess Rewards before I have to close the party (by midnight on the 30th).   Items will probably ship by Oct. 2nd.  If you have problems or questions, please e-mail Linda at cliptomania@ymail.com.  Have Fun!

Here are the Hostess Rewards for Lilla Rose Parties:
Sales
Free Items
½ Priced Items
Special Gift
$100-199

1
Yes
$200-299
$30
2
Yes
$300-399
$45
2
Yes
$400-499
$60
3
Yes
$500-599
$75
3
Yes
$600-699
$90
4
Yes
$700-799
$105
4
Yes
$800-899
$120
5
Yes
$900-999
$135
5
Yes
$1000+
$150
6
Yes

 Sounds like a pretty wonderful idea, right? If you've been thinking about trying them out, this would be a great time...not only will you get a great product, but who doesn't love winning!? Best of luck to all of you, if anyone orders (or better yet wins!), I'd love to hear what you ordered and how you like it! Enjoy!!

Friday, September 14, 2012

InstaFriday {9/14}

Friday. already? It is just me or has time been flying by lately!?
Oh well, here's a little bit of life this week, via Instagram!



Brought out the Fall Scentsy scents! (Okay, technically I did that a few weeks ago!) I had forgotten how much I absolutely LOVE this one (Toasted Apple Butter)...and Pumpkin Roll...and Caramel Pear Crisp...and Christmas Cottage...well, they're all amazing aren't they!?
(P.S. I'm having a party here, if anyone is interested!)



Shaun enjoys hanging out with the future Marines at Daddy's office.
(They were watching Marine Corps commercials, in case you were curious...Shaun insists it's on every time we visit. His favorites are the Toys for Tots commercials!)



A week or so ago, we went to the Fall Fest at Shaun's school. There were a few vendors there, including one for Mary Kay rep who had a drawing for this lovely gift basket! Guess who won!? I love it!



Shaun decided he needed a REAL Mr. Potato Head.



Last weekend, we went to the Children's Museum. If you are every in the Indy area, I highly recommend it! Lots of fun things for the kids. This was obviously the dinosaur exhibit. The exhibit itself was a bit too much of a sensory overload for Shaun, but he enjoyed seeing it from the overlooks!



Another one from the Children's Museum. He had a blast!



We've had some cooler weather the last few days- particularly today! Loving these fall-like temperatures and being able to really break out the Fall clothes!



Today was a day that just needed a trip to Starbucks. It's decaf (I cannot handle caffeine with my anxiety issues), but it was delicious nonetheless, and a much needed treat!


life rearranged

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Autism- It's Real!

Yesterday, I came across a discussion on my Facebook news feed about Autism. Though I know I should know better, I started reading through the comments. If you're an Autism parent, you may have had this same experience in the past- anytime there is an article written that has anything to do with Autism, the ignorant comments come out. The comments on this particular post that caught my attention were those stating that Autism was not real (or was over diagnosed) as an excuse to not discipline children with behavior problems...basically saying that it was not a real diagnosis, but an excuse for poor parenting. What!? How is this type of thinking still existent today!? We've gotten the dirty looks, rude comments and even strangers yelling at my sweet boy from people who seemed to agree with that same thought. Perhaps not to that extreme, but at least who believed he was just a 'bad kid'.

How absolutely frustrating!

How are we supposed to get our children the respect and understanding they deserve, if people don't understand that Autism is for real!? The fact is, an Autism diagnosis is not given based solely on behavior issues. There are many factors that are looked at and qualifications that have to be met before receiving that diagnosis. It's a long and often difficult process. Behavior issues are only part of it! There are also sensory issues, speech delays, social delays, etc. Autism is so complex, and I truly think that most still do not even realize this. So today, I want to share with you a few common misconceptions about Autism, based on the discussion I mentioned above, and other things we commonly hear. My hope is that by sharing some of these things, at least one person will walk away from this post with a little more understanding.

Individuals with Autism are dumb.
This is one that gets to me the most, because I truly believe my son is a genius. I cannot tell you how many times we have heard the statement, "But he's so smart!" Yes, he is. So were Albert Einstein, Isaac Newton, Michelangelo, and Mozart. All have been speculated to have been somewhere on the spectrum! Autism does not equal dumb, it just means their mind works differently than what yours or mine does. Even those children who may never speak, I still do not believe that they are stupid either, we are just unable to see how their mind works. Let's take a look at my son personally. Shaun taught himself to sight read at just 2 years old. He learned to read full sentences before he even spoke in them (it was reading them that helped him build his communication in my opinion). At just five years old, without having really been taught, he is reading at we believe around a third grade reading level. He has a memory that is beyond astounding. I'm in constant awe of the things I see him come up with. He has recently developed an obsession with production companies, and you can ask him who makes any movie and 9 times out of 10, he can tell you correctly which production company it's from (Universal, Paramount, etc). We don't know how he knows all of this, but there is no denying that he is incredibly smart, and has Autism.

People with Autism are anti-social.
Not exactly. Some may be (though some without Autism may be anti-social as well!), but social delays do not necessarily mean anti-social. Again, we'll look at my son for an example of what I mean. He loves people. He loves other kids. He simply does not always understand how to act appropriate in social situations, and has to work harder to learn what comes a bit more naturally to some of us. (Have you ever watched Big Bang Theory- think of Sheldon's lack of knowledge on what it socially acceptable to give you an idea of what that might look like for some.)

People with Autism look 'different'.
I'm never sure how to take it when someone makes the statement, 'Well, he looks normal.' Unlike with some conditions, a child with Autism does not look any different than a child without. I'm not really sure what these people think a person is supposed to look like, but there is no 'look of Autism'.

Children with Autism just need to be spanked/more discipline.
That kind of goes with the original reasoning behind this posting, but the truth is you can't discipline the Autism out of your child. In fact, typical discipline that may work well with a typically developing child, might have no effect whatsoever on a child on the spectrum. I'm not saying you can't discipline a child with Autism, but you sometimes have to think a little outside the box!

Autism is caused by vaccines...and only vaccines.
I say this one because I was actually accused of being in denial when I stated that I believed that in my son's specific case, I don't believe the vaccines were the cause. However, I have also always stated that I do believe in some children, they can potentially trigger something that was already there. I know people personally who have seen their child regress immediately after vaccines. I respect both opinions on the matter, and believe both to have some points of truth to them, but I do not however believe that we can lump all kids together and say this is the one and only possible cause. For some, yes, but for my son (and many others), not at all. And I will share what I posted on my personal Facebook page on the topic, which is: "Personally, I feel regardless of what caused Autism for ANY child, pointing fingers and placing blame does absolutely no good for those already affected. Instead of putting our focus there, why can't everyone use that same energy to fight together for awareness and to provide our children with the support, understanding and services they need. Seems like a much more productive idea to me!"

You should not get your child evaluated for Autism, because they will have that label the rest of their lives.
If your child truly has Autism, your child will have Autism the rest of their life, regardless of if they have the official diagnosis or not. The difference being, those who have that 'label' are now given the services they NEED. I cannot begin to express the important of early intervention and therapy. When I think of where my son was before receiving therapies, and where he is now...the difference is astounding, I cannot imagine having waited and missing out on those valuable therapy hours. Instead of worrying about your child being labeled, wouldn't you rather give him/her the best possible future!? That's what a diagnosis can do! It seriously breaks my heart when I hear people say they know people who refused to have their child evaluated for this reason.

A diagnosis of Autism means there is no future for a child.
Absolutely not true. Of course, we don't know what the future holds. Some children will grow up and never be able to live on their own, while others can have careers, families and do everything a typical peer would. Honestly, that's where that therapy comes in! There are plenty of amazing individuals, with amazing careers and lives who also happen to have Autism...think Temple Grandin! Autism is not a death sentence. It does mean we as parents may have to fight harder for our children, and that our children will have to work harder than their peers, but that does not mean they cannot do amazing things with their lives.


These are just a few, I'm sure there are many more I'm not thinking of right now. All these common misconceptions are why I fight so hard to raise awareness from my son. The numbers are growing, and yet there is still so little understood on the topic. Again, if I can reach just one person and give them a little more knowledge on the subject, I will feel as though I have accomplished something.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Addiction {A Shabby Apple Coupon}

I'm sure by now most of you have heard of Shabby Apple...they are all over the blog world! For those that haven't, well, their website says it best:
"We started Shabby Apple because we saw a need in women’s fashion that was not being met. A need to make women feel feminine and beautiful for what they wear, not what they bare. We offer flirty, stylish dresses a woman can wear just as comfortably in the office, at a family dinner, or on a date. Shabby Apple is a fashion company for women, by women, and of women."
Like many, I am ADDICTED to Shabby Apple. I could literally spend all day just browsing through their dresses online. I love dresses anyway, but I also love how they have such fashionable and unique items, while still keeping modest! I'm not one who likes to show too much skin, and so many dresses I find that would otherwise be really cute require a cardigan or jacket for me to feel comfortable wearing them. Or are much shorter than I would prefer- not ideal when running after a child! With Shabby Apple dresses, that's not a problem. Cute, comfortable, modest- they've got it covered...literally!

I am lucky enough to own a few items from Shabby Apple myself- here are a few I've posted in the past:



Mariposa Grove
This is, I believe, my favorite dress that I own...so pretty, and comfortable!
There is nothing I don't love about this dress!





Museo Floral Scarf
The first time I posted this photo, I could not post the link because it seemed to be sold out, but it's back now, so if you love it, hurry and buy now! Seriously, this is the greatest scarf ever...it's soft, it's huge, and it's just super pretty. I've only had it for a few weeks now, and have been planning outfits specifically so I could wear this scarf...it's that wonderful!



Lighthouse
This was my first Shabby Apple dress, that I wore to my husband's recruiting school graduation. It was absolutely perfect for the occasion, and I still love this dress!


This belt is by far my most worn Shabby Apple item. It's the perfect finishing touch to just about every outfit! Unfortunately, it's no longer available, but it gives you an idea of the awesome accessories that the company offers!

I have to tell you all too, nearly every time I have left the house wearing something from this company, I have received numerous compliments from friends and strangers alike. What a great feeling! If I could own everything they offer, I do believe I would! (Or at least a large majority anyway!) Some favorites on my wishlist (I'll just post the links to keep from being too pic heavy here!): Anamalia in Green, Tigris, G. Cooper... that's just to name a few!

Want to know another great thing about Shabby Apple? They always seem to have some sort of discount code available! And as the post title suggests, I have one for you today as well! For 10% off anything on their website, use the code favorite10 by September 14th! How wonderful is that!?

(And because I know I personally like to get the absolute best deals too, be sure to find them on Facebook as well- right now they have a coupon game going on where you can win various values of coupons to purchase an item from the Academia collection, and each order with these coupons receives a free jewelry gift!)

I hope you enjoy browsing their website as much as I do, and I'd love to know if you decide to purchase anything (or what you would purchase if you could!) Be sure to read the descriptions for sizing info, as well as the comments if you decide to order! I know I'm personally wary of buying clothes without trying them on, but for the most part, I've found if you read through those things, it'll give you a pretty good idea of the size you need to order! Enjoy! (And I do apologize in advance if you too become addicted...seriously!)

Dresses from Shabby Apple

(I am a Shabby Apple affiliate, and this post does contain affiliate links. However, I was in no way compensated for this post, I simply wanted to share my love for this wonderful company with all of you! All thoughts are completely 100% my own, honest opinions!)

Friday, September 7, 2012

InstaFriday {9/7}

A little late- but's it's been a busy week! Here's a little bit of what we've been up to lately!

(Oh, by the way, remember last time I did this linkup I mentioned that I had an old iPhone with a crappy camera? Well, literally just a day or two later we ended up switching phone services because I barely got signal in my own house- no good when you don't have a land line! So now I have a wonderful new iPhone and the camera is 100 times better...yay! Now, onto those pictures-in no particular order because I'm too tired to rearrange them! Ha!)



So proud of my little man- he wrote this all by himself. The lamp was drawn by daddy, but Pixar was ALL him! I was in complete shock when I saw this...typically, if he wants something written- or colored- or drawn- he demands someone else do it for him!



Yesterday (Thursday), I finally got around to spending some birthday money. Even for my birthday I like to get the most for the money so I went to Plato's Closet (seriously becoming addicted to that store!). Two sweaters (yes, they're the same!), leg warmers, 2 pairs of boots, a pair of flats and a necklace- all for $45. The taller boots- only about $12.50 after my military discount...I LOVE them!



Shaun decided to dress himself a week or so ago, and this was the result. Who needs to match when you look this cute!? (Of course what you don't see is that he also chose to go the no pants route as well!)



Today's drawing. This is the THX logo, and the little thing in the corner is a robot. Pretty great if you ask me! (Have I mentioned his love of production companies, etc? He's hilarious!)



My shopping trip from this week! It seems like I haven't been able to find as many great deals lately as I had in the past, so I was super excited with the awesome savings this time around!!



Three generations playing the Nintendo 64. Shaun, Daddy and Grandpa.
I wish I could have gotten a picture of the look on Shaun's face when he discovered Grandpa had one...he was ecstatic! It was like Christmas!



This was tonight. Shaun decided it was time to lay down and sleep, so how do you put a potato head to sleep? Well, you just take his eyes of course!



This was from a few weeks back, but I don't believe I mentioned it. As some of you may know, I do not eat meat and haven't since I was 13, twelve years ago...but I'm really not a great vegetarian because up until a few weeks ago I had NEVER had tofu. To be honest, I was scared of it. But I decided to give it a shot and was pleasantly surprised. Definitely an odd texture, but it was pretty good. I won't be attempting to make my own anytime soon, but if we head back to PF Changs I could definitely see myself ordering again!



This is the necklace I mentioned earlier that I got on my birthday shopping trip (and my new phone too!). I LOVE it. I love bright colors, and particularly this green. So fun!


life rearranged