Saturday, May 21, 2011


I have received all my information and duties for the AutismOne conference in Chicago this week!  Everything is planned out, well almost everything, and I have a ton of emotions going a hundred miles per hour!  I am super excited to attend an event with thousands of other professionals, parents, grandparents, doctors, teachers, and advocates who "get it"!  I'm thrilled that I get to photograph this event and all the amazing speakers, vendors, and activities.  I can't wait to learn new information about the latest research, therapies, treatments, laws, supplements, and foods!  I want to jump up and down when I think about all the advocates, doctors, and authors who are leading this great movement of "Recovery Is Possible" and how I get to meet and photograph them!  For me this is like attending the Grammies and meeting all the artist, or attending the Academy Awards and meeting all the actors and actresses, or a huge sporting event and meeting all the athletes.  It may sound silly to you but to me these are my heroes and the people I look up to the most.  Why?  Because they fight for what they believe in!  They know that autism is not a brain disorder that can't be healed, they know that there are reasons why there has been a 400% increase in autism and they are fighting to be heard!  These are the kind of people I love.  They never give up, they fight for these kids, and they don't let anything or anyone stand in their way. 
I have never been away from my children for 5 nights and 5 days so this makes my heart sink but I know that I have an awesome opportunity in front of me.  My mom is coming up to help take care of the kids and I know they will love every minute of it.  I've told them several times that Mommy is going away for awhile but as soon as I mention "Grandma" they light up!  I'm very thankful for my husband's support because we parent so well together and I hate anytime he has to be gone overnight.
I can't wait to share my experience when I get back!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

A bunch of ramblings and my kids

I often think about things I can blog about.  I have a lot on my mind and a lot that I want to share but get caught up in the business of life.  Here are a few things I've been meaning to blog about but haven't:

1. Ella and Mason's IGG food allergy test that came back positive for peanut and corn but negative for egg and dairy.
2. Paul Thorson, who conducted the study showing there is no link between autism and vaccines, was indicted on fraud.  Didn't hear about that one on your prime time news did you?
3. Labels.  Everyone seems to get upset about labeling children and how they don't want to put a label on their child.  No one seems to get upset about labeling their child High Ability, Gifted and Talented, Athletic, Top of the Class, Musically Inclined.  A label doesn't define who your child is, it opens the door to a ton of resources.
4. How the government is paying out millions of dollars to children with autism that have been vaccine injured and the truth is about to explode.  Don't believe me?  Take a look,
5. Our average weekly grocery bill of $300!  Trying to find a balance with eating healthy, organic food but not spending our mortgage each month in groceries!

Instead of going on about everything that is negative, I'll continue this post with all things 3 kids!

Haiden is doing AWESOME and we couldn't be more proud of him!  I can't believe he is finishing up his 1st grade year.  We had open house at his school last week and it was so fun to see the progress he has made over the year.  He has been playing soccer for about 4 weeks now and loves his team.  The kids all seem to get along great and they really play well together.  We are trying to give him more responsibilities because for so long he hasn't had any real chores. ( I know, completely my fault.)  He isn't a big fan but does it anyway, we only get a couple eye rolls and sighs. :) He is still completely obsessed with basketball and wants to play it and/or watch it 24/7!

Ella is still Princess Ella but there has been a lot less crying and fewer breakdowns.  As I mentioned above, we found out, through an IGG blood test, she has a food sensitivity to peanuts and corn.  Never in a million years would I have thought this!  I always thought it was dairy and eggs.  I've also adjusted my parenting style with her and it has made a world of difference. :) You know the saying, "The apple doesn't fall far from the tree"?  Well it is so true, Ella and I are so much alike that we were butting heads constantly.  I'm really working hard to be more patient, understanding, soft spoken, and sympathetic with her and it seems to be making a huge difference.  She loves all things babies, dress up, and girly right now but she can run with the big boys, loves soccer, and doesn't mind getting dirty.

Mason is slowly moving from a sweet baby to a defiant toddler.  I knew this time was coming but I'm really not ready for it.  He tests the word "consistent" to no end!  Mason has also been in speech the past 6 weeks which I was a little hesitant to share.  Partially, because to me, I had done everything right this time so why was he so hard to understand? Why was he getting so frustrated when he talked?  Why did he seem to have low muscle tone in his mouth?  I know how important early intervention is so I contacted our wonderful First Steps coordinator, Becky, who is also our neighbor and someone I really look up to.  So maybe I fibbed a little bit on his evaluation but he qualified and we got a fabulous speech therapist who was also Ella's speech therapist.  (On a side note, did you know that the APA has lowered their standards and that by the age of two years, children should be saying 10 words?!  When Ella was 2 years old the standard was 20 words. So according to our pediatrician Mason didn't need speech because he already had 10 words at 18 months...crazy!)  Within two sessions, Mason's vocabulary seemed to double and we were able to understand him more.  Now he is saying 2-3 words phrases, communicates all his wants and needs, and even throws in a few extra hilarious "Mason sayings".  For example, he tells me daily who all in our house has a wee-wee, he tells me when he needs "privacy", he has called me a poop head, and when I push him on the swing he tells me he wants to go high like a super hero. :)

For Mother's Day we spent the morning at Eagle Creek Park.  Brian took a few pictures of me and the kidos.

 Baby #4 at 15 weeks!