"These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world." - John 16:33

Monday, May 23, 2011

The AutismOne/Generation Rescue Conference is this week!

The AutismOne/Generation Rescue conference begins this week.  It is no secret that I am a HUGE Generation Rescue fan, and I wish I could go and just absorb all of the amazing information and activities!  Someday we will get there, but not this year.  The conference is being held from May 25th to May 29th in Lombard,  Illinois.  The theme is, "Autism Recovery on a Budget."  The lectures are going to be presented by over 150 Autism experts. After reading the schedule of lectures I can't even begin to explain how much I really wish we were going.  Thankfully, the lectures from last year are available for purchase on DVD for $17.00 each.  I am hoping they do the same for this years conference.

Topics will include; dietary information, health and wellness, medical and physiological issues, vaccine issues, environmental issues, multiple alternative therapies (Cranio Sacral, Sensory integration etc...), dental care, insurance coverage, dental care issues...and the list goes on!

I am sharing this because today it was announced that AutismOne will be offering a FREE live video stream online for the presentations!  Not only are they going to allow everyone and anyone access to view the presentations, but they are also offering free downloads of some of the lecture materials!  I am so excited and thankful for this!  To access the materials and lecture schedules you can click HERE

I can guarantee I will be online tonight to figure out how to work some of these online lectures into our schedule this week, as well as downloading the free materials.  Any lectures I can't view (because of our schedule) I may just have to buy when they are available.   This conference is not just for parents with children on the spectrum, but the topics also can apply to children who are chronically ill as well. 

Whether you are new to the biomedical world of Autism or an experienced "warrior", I would urge that you check out this generous offer that is being shared with our community.  I know we won't be missing out on this opportunity!

Mommy Provost

Friday, May 20, 2011

It's all in how you look at it.

Phew, what a week!  I guess I should preface this post by venting a few of my added "to do's" of the week.  My husband is away for the week (again) for business, which leaves me on my own with the 2 kids again.  I'll tell ya, I don't know how single mothers do this!  Both kids needed blood work this week, we had a hearing test for Sassy (which was rescheduled because she wouldn't cooperate....shocker!), I had to get a stool sample from Sassy to send out for her first CDSA,we began Magnesium and CO Q10 this week, and my husband and I have a wedding this Saturday to go to (which means I need to buy a dress and shoes because Lord knows I certainly don't have any that fit!).  None of this got done last week because both kids were sick with a fever so now we are playing catch-up...and now I'm congested...

It was decided (by Sassy and I) that yesterday after I dropped off Peanut at school, her and I were going to have a mommy daughter day.  We were going to go to get mommy's haircut and go to the mall and shop for a dress and shoes.  Sassy was excited when we discussed it in the morning when she woke up, but that excitement was definitely short lived.  First off, I woke up and hour and a half late (AGH!).  I got up and showered just in time to get Peanut out of bed.  I rushed around pushing their morning supplements into them, trying my best to get them to eat and pack a lunch for both kids.  We were about to rush out the door (coats on), when Peanut proclaimed, "I pooped!"  He walked over to where I was standing and said, "I guess we should change my diaper."  I praised him for his words and got to work on the fastest diaper change on the planet (at least, as fast as possible when the diaper you are changing is a risk for "leakage"). As I finished the diaper change I asked Sassy to go to the door.  This (for whatever reason) set off a tantrum from Sassy.  Long story short, I was (barely) able to drag Sassy to the car with Peanut happily in tow, into the car, and then got him to school late (again).

I was able to calm Sassy down enough to feel ok with getting my haircut with her in the stroller.  She fussed and whined through the whole process.  The Autism subject came up (as it always manages to do) and I got a chance to spread a little awareness.  I got Sassy to the car and off to the mall we went.  I was very cautious.  Sassy was having a "bad" sensory day and just walking through the main doors to the mall was a bit of a challenge, but we made it.  I decided as I walked the mall with my overloaded angel that the mall is a sensory hell.  There is no other way to describe it.  Peanut is almost always sensory seeking so the mall is usually a fun experience for him.  Sassy tend to get over stimulated and has issues with certain places and objects.

Sassy seemed to have a wonderful time picking out a dress for mommy, and she even paroused the jewelery and picked out a matching necklace for me.  I was thankful that I was able to find a dress so easily and we ventured further into the mall to try to find something fun for Sassy before we went home.  The Disney store was close by and I thought that would be a perfect place for her to find a "treat"  for herself.  She has been in the store a few times before, but I am finding as she gets older that we are having more and more sensory issues than before.  We got to the the entrance to the store and she stopped dead in her tracks.  I told her to walk into the store.  She covered her eyes and said in her cute little 2 year old voice, "I can't."  I asked, "Why not."  She again covered her eyes and said, "I'm scared."  I offered to hold her hand, to carry her, to put her in the stroller, but no matter what I tried to get her into the store she refused.  I felt so bad for my little angel.  The Disney store was supposed to be a fun store that parents try to avoid as they walk the mall, but for my little girl it was place that evokes fear.  I again (as I do often) silently thanked Autism for making my child's life more difficult and we walked to a shoe store to buy a pair of shoes, which was the final item on my list of things I needed. 

At this point Sassy was done.  She asked to be in the stroller for the rest of the time in the mall and just watched everything.  My little shoe maven was even uninterested in shoes.  As I stood in line wondering if I would ever really be able to do a mother/daughter mall day with Sassy.  She lasted about 30 minutes before sensory overload set in.  Maybe it's something to work on.  The thought of not being able to have that fun "girl time" with my daughter made me a little sad. 

There were 2 mothers with their little ones (about Sassy's age) in line ahead of me.  They were chatting back and forth about their plans for play dates, birthday parties, and shopping.  I found myself a little envious of them.  I wished I knew what it was like to have a life like that.  I flipped through my wallet to figure out what gift cards I could combine to buy my shoes (you didn't think I actually had money in our account for that did you? lol!).  One of the little boys walked up to one of the mothers and said, "Mommy, I have to pee!" as he held his pants and began to do a little potty dance.  The mother ignored him completely and kept talking.  This occurred about 5 or 6 times.  I was amazed at how the mother could ignore the request and keep on chatting as if nothing was being said.  I was shocked because every single verbalization that occurs from my children receives a response.  Once at the register I overheard the mother make a comment about how annoying her sons multiple bathroom requests were, and I suddenly was no longer envious of them.  When ever our children ask for anything, even if the answer is no, I am still so thankful for the words.  I can't ever imagine taking that for granted. 

I no longer wish we had a life like those women.  Don't get me wrong, I would never wish our lives on anyone, but at the same time I am thankful for it.  Perhaps if we never encountered Autism in our lives we too would take small things for granted as well.  I don't want a life like that.  I'm happy to live being thankful for everything, including the little things. 

"Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things."
                                                                                                                               ~Robert Brault

Sunday, May 15, 2011

A sliver of light in the darkness.

Our lives are still as stressful as ever.  We seem to get busier and busier with every week that goes by.  The financial costs are beginning to loom over us.  The kids are getting over yet another fever.  There is so much on our minds.  Just when I thought I might be on the verge of being weakened by the all burdens of our life, God finds a way to remind me of why we work SO hard at what we do every day of our lives. 

 My mother wonderfully offered to watch the kids (who are still sick) so I could go to church this morning.  When I returned home, my children were disasters.  Both had refused to eat (yet, were covered in soup).  Sassy had developed a terrible, deep, painful sounding cough and was miserable.  She would cough, and wince, then cry because it hurt to cough, which would then make her cough more.  I tried to make her as comfortable as possible and then set off to try to get some food into Peanut.  His new "thing" is to copy his little sister.  If she doesn't eat, then he refuses to eat.  Well, the problem is, hunger sets Peanut off into tantrums, so we definitely try to avoid that situation.  I fought with him a bit until I got a couple of chips into him and then sat on the couch, already tired.  My mind was blank and honestly I was kind of enjoying it, and then something out of the ordinary happened.

Peanut came over to me and said, "I wanna go buy a car."  I said, "Ummm, ok.  How should we do that."  He replies, "I should go to the store!"  Duh...silly me.  Peanut then goes over to the door, sits on the ground and then starts to move his hands over his feet.  "What are you doing?" I ask.  "Putting on my shoes." He says.  Then he goes over to our coat rack and starts moving his arms around as if he is putting on an invisible coat.  "Are you putting on a coat too?" I ask.  "I'm not done." he says, as he then proceeds to pretend to zip up his coat.  (At this point my eyes are filling with tears)  Peanut then goes over to the little BMW push car we have, gets on the car and drives through the dining room and into the kitchen, happily humming to himself quietly.  He stops at the play kitchen, gets off the car and grabs a shopping bag.  He turns to me and says, "I'm going shopping, bye!"  waves to me and walks down the hall.

As the tears begin to stream down my cheeks I slowly and quietly tip toe down the hall to watch.  I keep thinking I should get the video camera but don't out of fear he'll notice and stop what he's doing. (Peanut is obsessed with cameras and so it is VERY hard to catch anything spontaneous on tape.  If he sees the camera he is mesmerized, and forgets whatever else he is doing.)  I find Peanut in his room.  He is looking through his drawers and pretending to shop for cloths.  He finds a tee shirt and looks up at me.  He holds up the shirt and says, "This is it!"  He looks directly into my eyes as if to expect something of me.

"Do you want to put that shirt on?" I ask.  "Yup."  He says.  He then proceeds to take off the shirt he is wearing, and succeeds!  He throws the old shirt to the floor and puts on the new shirt!  It took everything in me to hold back the tears.  I didn't want him to see me cry.  I praise him up and down for putting on his own shirt and then he goes off to play.  I sit on the floor in amazement.  All I can think is, "What just happened here?"

Many of you reading this completely understand why all of this is a HUGE deal, while others may not. You see pretend play is something that children with Autism struggle with, and sometimes never achieve.  Pretend play is extremely important to a child's development, and parents of children with Autism work very hard to try to help their child develop this skill that everyone else takes for granted.  It's a lot of work and a big process to say the least.  Not only did Peanut pretend, but he came up with it all on his own!  He created his own scheme!  This is not just big, this is huge!

For the past year (maybe more) we have also been working on teaching Peanut to dress himself.  We have made progress, but that progress has been in baby steps.  He has never completely taken off his shirt or put on a shirt completely independently...until today.

Though all the darkness, gloom, and burden, God always finds a way to show us a glimmer of light, even if it's through the tiniest crack.  The question is, are we willing to allow ourselves to see this small light of hope through all the murkiness?  In the past few months I have been able to push through that darkness and I have been following these little lights, and today, God gave us more than a small glimmer.  He gave us a burst of that light.  A burst of hope that has again reminded me, this is why you are tired and stressed...and this is why we will keep going.  We will not give up and we will keep pushing through.

Don't give up.  Not just on your children, not just on the fight that really is Autism, but also, don't give up on HIM.  I know I couldn't do this without God.  I don't know how anyone really could.  All I do know, is that he is there holding our hand and guiding us through...and we are faithfully following.  I pray you will all do the same.

God Bless!

Mommy Provost

"These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world." - John 16:33

Friday, May 13, 2011

It's been a while!

For some reason I haven't been able to access my blog for a couple of days now.  Blogger was fixing some technical issue.  The past week has been crazy for us.  The week began as it usually does, but quickly went down from there.  Both children came down with yet another fever, which lasted for a good part of the week.  I'm happy to say they are both doing much better now and actually ate 2 of their 3 meals today.  I was even able to start to reintroduce a few supplements! 

On Tuesday I discovers a couple of bananas that were in need of attention or a trash can.  I decided to try making some banana bread muffins.  I have to say, I was shocked at how hard it was to find a decent recipe, but I found one!  I wanders onto Lynns Kitchen Adventures.com and found a recipe that looked promising (and I happen to have all of the ingredients).  I have to say, these were the best GFCFSF muffins I have EVER made!!!  They tasted exactly the same as banana muffins that are gluten full!!!!  Her site is gluten free, but not casein free.  I have to say, I am impressed and I look forward to trying more of her recipes.

Here is the recipe from Lynns Kitchen Adventures:

Gluten Free Banana Muffins

  • ½ cup + 1 tablespoon sorghum flour
  • ½ cup + 1 tablespoon potato starch
  • ¼ cup + 2 tablespoon tapioca flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoon xanthan gum
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted (I used Earth Balance GFCFSF margarine)
  • 1 1/2 cups mashed bananas
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla
*I also added some chopped walnuts to make sure to get as little extra protein in the muffin.
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin pan with liners.
  2. In a bowl mix sorghum flour, potato starch, tapioca flour, xanthan gum, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  3. Mix in butter, mashed bananas, eggs, and vanilla. Stir just until incorporated.
  4. Spoon batter into muffin pan lined with paper liners.
  5. Bake 25-28 minutes or until done.
  6. Cool completely.
(The recipie is directly from her site.)

YUM, YUM!!!  If you like banana bread, definitely try this recipie!!!


Saturday, May 7, 2011

Happy Mothers Day!

I saw this circulating on Facebook and thought it was perfect.

"For all the moms out there who had to wait longer to hear a first word, who spent more time in doctors offices with their child than on playdates, who endure the countless 'bad days' and the stares from other people...For the moms whose child's first friend was their therapist...For the moms who face autism everyday...WE SALUTE YOU, LADIES!!!"

Happy Mothers Day!  I hope all of you have a blessed day tomorrow with your families!

Mommy Provost

Friday, May 6, 2011

It's official, I'm a year older...

Today is officially the day that I am now 3 decades old (as my wonderful mother pointed out to me this morning)!  I have to be honest, I don't feel thirty.  I still feel like a teenager!  As I look back on the past few years, I can't believe how much has happened.  In my younger years I would sit and dream about what my life as an adult would be, and this was definitely not it!  With that said, I wouldn't change it for the world!

I feel like the most blessed person on the planet!  I have a wonderful husband, two amazing children, a supportive and loving family, the best church family, great friends, a place to live, food on the table and plenty of hugs and kisses to go around!  My children continue to make gains on a daily basis and have amazed everyone that has worked with them (past and present).  I have nothing to complain about (except for maybe a bit of sleep deprivation, and an annoying twitching eye, lol!) but neither of those things compare to the blessings in my life. 

Today I will continue to keep a smile on my face.  This is not just another year that has passed by in my life, but is another year that I feel I have truly "lived", and I'm so grateful for that.

"I will give thanks to you, LORD, with all my heart; I will tell of all your wonderful deeds. I will be glad and rejoice in you; I will sing the praises of your name, O Most High. "  Psalm 9:1-2 (NIV)

I hope you all have a wonderful and blessed day!

Mommy Provost

Monday, May 2, 2011

Manic Monday

Mondays are always the hardest for me.  We drop Peanut off at school in the morning, I attempt to run a couple errands with Sassy (if shes agreeable to it of course), we pick up Peanut and go home.  Once there I feed the kids, change diapers, pick up the house (all in about 45 minutes) and we are off to Peanuts SI therapy (Skipping Sassy's nap ....blah!).  Once Peanuts therapy is done we get back in the car and get home just in time for his home ABA to start.  We do an hour of ABA and then it's time to make supper, bathe the kids and get them off to bed.  Phew!

Today was even harder because I was exhausted.  We stayed up last night to watch the President speak.  I ended today to find out that we were going to have more large bills coming our way.  At first when I found out I honestly felt like I was going to throw up.  I took a second and went into a quiet room and said a prayer. 

I realized God is with us.  We can get through this just like we always do.  We have faith that this is all happening for a reason.  I decided to look back at some videos of the kids to bring a smile back to my face.  I came across a video of peanut from 2010.  Peanuts video just reminds me of why we are doing all of this.  When Peanut was diagnosed, he could speak, but it was echolalic.  In other words, he would echo what ever someone said to him.  He understood that when someone spoke to him he was expected to respond (thus the echo).  What he didn't understand was that there was a much bigger function to language.  The video was taken 4 months after his diagnosis and 3 months after eliminating Gluten from his diet.  It's Peanut, singing "Jesus Loves Me."  This was video footage of Peanut coming out of his "fog".  I know, I know...where is the video??  Ask Blog spot, because I couldn't download it! So, you'll have to use your imagination I guess.  :-)  Anyway... 

What a miracle!  All of the obstacles that are presented to us in life are all for a reason.  If we weren't going through this then I may not appreciate this video as much as I do.  I could watch this over and over again.  Bills, or no bills God was with us then, and he'll be with us now.  

The Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting …” (Psalm 100:5)

God Bless

Mommy Provost