Sunday, June 30, 2013

Ribbon Necklace with a little Origami Owl

the entire double ribbon necklace with Origami Owl charms, locket and dangles

When I first heard about Origami Owl....I was entranced!  I wanted to sell it.  But, life happened and I needed to stop doing direct sales and focus my energy on my family.  So, I kind of forgot about it.

The other night...I went on to Facebook and one of my friends, Andrea, was hosting an Origami Owl online party.  I jumped over and was drooling!  Hubby and I are in a interesting time in our marriage and when I am needing soothing...I shop!  And I did.  And...I don't regret the purchase at all!


I have been wearing my necklace every moment and showing it off to all of my friends.  I even booked my own party that ends on July 3rd  Tammy's Facebook Origami Owl party!

Today...we are having a heat wave!  I took the kids down the hill to Target and it was 110!  OMG!  I was sweating and my daughter said "Mom....your neck is green!"   Well, I have always only been able to wear 18 ct gold or better or my skin rots.  And that was going on today.  ICK!

Anyway...I love my necklace and want more.  So, what to do???

I got out my jewelry making stuff and found some cute go with anything ribbon....and made this fabulous necklace to hold my locket and dangles!  It was so cute...even my teenage daughter said "Mom, you should post it on Pinterest".  I almost fell over dead!

All you need is ribbon, ribbon pinch crimps, a couple of lobster clips, some O-rings and boom!  Total beauty that won't turn green!  Hoot!  Hoot!

close up of dangles, charms & locket

ribbon pinch clasps and lobster clip

my ribbon  :)
 It was so easy!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Walls up...battle stations

Today was my therapy session.  I do love my therapist...even tho she is teeny, tiny.  But, she is real.  She is flawed and I like that about her  :)

I have been going to therapy for several years...dealing with my past and childhood.  And now....dealing with my children and my marriage. can NOT have thin skin and go to therapy!  Not if you want to get better  :)

I would not be like my Mom.  I know a lot of you love your Mom.  And I do love my Mom.  She was not a good Mom.  She was NOT the worst Mom either.  But, as a Mom now....I see what a MUCH BETTER job she could have done.  I know a lot of people say that when they became Mom's they finally understood their Moms and all that she went thru to raise them and became closer.   
My feelings are......way opposite!

Anyway...the awareness of our son's ASD, the early retirement of my Hubby and his leaving the correctional department after 27 years, me returning to work and closing my business, the financial difficulties these have put on us and the general changes that Mid-life bring upon you...or marriage is rocky.  We have both committed to riding it out and never looking in the direction of the "D" word.

But...sometimes you need a break.  We are at that point.

I have been paddling alone for the past several months.  Hubby has been thinking we are on a cruise to a strange land and has been afraid to open his eyes.  I got him brochures, got him a passport, got him travel books about our trip and a tour guide, printed out maps, stood him at the edge of the dock and then seated him in the boat.  I did everything else....then got in the boat and started paddling.

I am tired of paddling alone.

I see that Hubby hasn't grabbed a paddle yet, or opened his eyes, or read any of the brochures or travel books.  He pretends the tour guide is not there.  And is stuck.

I love my Hubby.  He is my best friend.  But, I can not live his life nor can I change anything about it.  Only he can do this.

He saw his life differently. 

Maybe a life in Paris?  Maybe even fishing off the coast of Mexico. 

I saw a life of a family...I have always wanted a family.

I lived a life of secrets my whole life.  I would see one thing and was always told it was something else.  I was always told I was less than and not enough.  I hated that life. 

I swore that no matter what, I would never lie or keep secrets again.  I would place my roots down for my children and never pull them up for any reason.  I would speak my mind and if someone didn't like it...they could kiss my ass!  I would do...whatever I needed to make my children's life something they would never run from or be embarrassed by.  I would call a spade, a spade....and explain why to anyone that wanted to listen...or not  :)

And I don't really give a shit what you...or anyone else thinks about me, my life or the choices I have made to be where I am today.

But, from early childhood.....I learned to build walls.  My walls are impenetrable!  They are 100 feet thick and made of steel!  When you come from a tough learn to build walls.  One of the things I have been working on in to let down my walls.  Take the reinforcement down.  Let some sun shine in  :)

Today, I told my therapist that Hubby was on a vacation to see his kids and grandkids.  He was also on a vacation from me and our kids.  He was tired of living in a mental hospital.  He was tired of trying to understand ASD.  He wanted a better life.  He had other plans for his life.  He had always wanted to travel when he retired and he can't do that now.  He would like to retire somewhere else.  He wanted to be better off financially and not facing loan modification and the possible loss of our home.  He wanted more than what he has.

So, I told him to go on a vacation.  I was already paddling alone.  I told him to think about what he wanted and what he could do about his situation.  I instantly put up my walls....thicker and stronger than ever.  Because now...the walls don't just protect me.

When I told my therapist this....she was not happy.  She saw that when my walls are thick and high....I get very intellectual and rational.  My gone.  The space between her and I is greater than the physical distance between me and Hubby. 

I am scared.  And then I am not.

I raised Sophie all alone.  And now that Hubby is gone...the stress is gone from the house.  We are not having meltdowns.  Our behavior therapist is calling nightly because she knows..shit is going to hit the fan soon...and it hasn't yet.  Everything our behavior therapist has asked to be implemented months implemented!  And working great! 

Hubby calls daily.  Nash is distancing himself from Dad because having Dad gone hurts.  I feel guilty enjoying the peace and quiet.  And I am scared that maybe...just maybe.  This is it.

He claims to miss us and I believe him.  I told him that he MUST get his head out of his ass and get over this denial phase he is in.  He MUST read......READ....a Temple Grandin book about Autism.  He must be on the team or submit his application to leave. 

Before he left...I made him see our marriage therapist alone and make an appointment with his doctor that he MUST keep.  Every time I talk to him on the phone...I assure him that if he chooses to stay...I will not fight it.  All I ask is forewarning because this is going to be a HORRIBLE thing for Nash. 

I do not like the unknown.  I HATE surprises.  Yet...after many months of running with band-aides and putting out fires on a daily and hourly basis...I am enjoying the calm before the storm. 

Am I sure there is a storm?  It may not be the storm I am anticipating...but there WILL be a storm.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Do you schmooze for what you need???

We are new to the spectrum.  Yes, we are the late comers to this lovely change....a child on the spectrum.

As I have said before...I always knew the boy was weird.  My little odd fellow, Nash.  And on October 22, rained!  And that day...our life changed.  Was it him?  Or me?  Was he always more than weird and I didn't choose to see it.  Or was he just odd....and the rain woke him up to his life???

I have no fucking idea!

Anyway, when it happened....I was all over it!  I have the ability to perform amazing feats when necessary.  I know enough people really to be dangerous.  I know enough people in the right places that when this shift happened...I was able to get answers and get people to listen to me rather quickly.

From October 22 to December 3...Nash went from a very solemn, very active, very odd, rarely a problem child to a child on medications for ADHD with full knowledge that the spectrum is there...just not sure where.

By the 1st of January I was reading everything I could get my hands on and had Nash in therapy to figure out "what the fuck?"  I had the ear of our pediatrician, a therapist, the school counselor, the principal, the special education department of our school and parents in our community that had answers and other connections.

On February 28, we finally were able to get into to see a psycho-pharmacologist neurologist in Walnut Creek and did not accept our insurance but would be willing to see us for $600 and would provide us with a diagnosis and meds.  Because at this beautiful, quiet but active boy had become violent!  And I was the focus of his rage.  I was scared!

On February 28, I had also served the school with a formal request for an IEP.  I never knew I could ask for one.  They gave me SST meetings but nothing else.  And never told me I could ask for this.  Even tho I was talking to people in the was not laid right out for me.  I was told by the school I had to have a diagnosis to even talk to anyone about asking for help.  And I was asking for help and a diagnosis.

It was before this that I was recommended a woman to see.  I had talked to her on the phone after many well connected people made introductions thru secret doorways on my behalf.  I spoke to her on the phone one evening.  She scared the crap outta me!  I made arrangements to meet her at my office because a Monday holiday was here and no one (was supposed to be) would be at work.  LOL  They were all at work!  But before our supposed meeting...the more I thought about her...the more of a whack job I thought she was.  And I had to pay her cash because we had private insurance and she only accepts medi-cal.  I decided to NOT meet with her and cancelled our meeting.  She never picked up her message...showed up at my office and met everyone I work with.  They hated her!  I later talked to other professionals that explained why she is the way she is and we met again.  I loved her!  And I still see her and pay her cash for her help.  Altho...we are negotiating trading her services for timeshare points with our WorldMark timeshare.  She loves WorldMark  :)  WorldMark by Wyndham

So, back to February 28th.  I walked out of the psycho-pharmacologist neurologist in Walnut Creek's office with a full diagnosis of ADHD, PDD-NOS and the possibility of more and a prescription for a medicine that will make him not so mean!  Best money spent!  SWEAR!

Since then....we have weekly sessions with our behavior specialist, we have our own local psychiatrist that has changed Nash's diagnosis to Autism, ADHD and anxiety.  We have tweaked the meds and added more for sleep...because my kids don't sleep and Nash does not know how to self-sooth.  We have also added a marriage therapist for me & Hubby, single therapy for me and single therapy for Hubby (ok, 1 session....but that was hard to get him to agree to).  And a successful IEP meeting on May 2nd.  I have also gotten myself appointed to the Community Action Committee for SELPA and will see what other stuff I can get myself into.  Because I schmooze and I get what I want and what I need.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

the joy of sleeplessness

My kids don't sleep well. 

Heck...I don't sleep well.  Never have in my entire life!

Last Hubby left after we put Nash to bed to take a 9 day trip up to Washington & Oregon to see his daughters, son-in-law and grand-kids.  I have been preparing Nash for the event making calendars to track when it would happen and a calendar that started today so that he will know when Dad will be coming home.

I did not think leaving after we put Nash to bed was a good idea because he didn't see him leave.  But, I was assured by Hubby that it would be fine. 

Why am I always right.

About 1am....Nash woke up and came to me in bed.  "Mom, can we cuddle?"  Sure, climb in. 

He had a million questions.  Am I sure Dad left?  Where is Dad now?  Is he there yet?  Why hasn't he called?  Why did he leave?  Is he coming back?  I answered every question and rubbed his back.  His anxiety was very high!

I would dose off and on between the questions and concerns that Nash had.  I would ask if he was ready to go to bed...and he would reply nope.  Finally at 3:30am...I am exhausted!  I need to sleep.  I tell him he will be fine in his own bed...let's go. 

I get him tucked in, kissed all over his little face and assure him again that Dad is just driving and we will talk to him in the morning.


I piddle on Facebook and shop a little and decide...I have GOT TO SLEEP!

I take a pain pill because I ache all over and eventually fall asleep.

5am....Nash is by my side.  Very upset and worried.  Even tho I told him to go to sleep...he did not.  He laid in bed and watched a movie on his DVD player.....this his therapist thinks is a good idea.  I fought it for a while...but, I do get to sleep when he is watching a movie.  I get him into bed..rub is little back and talk away his worries.

By 6am...he is still concerned about Dad and wondering where he is.  We call.  I put Nash on speaker because he does not like to have the phone touch him.  We get dad on the phone and fine that he is still about 1 1/2 hours from Portland.  He has pulled over a couple of times to rest.  Nash now feels better and is less worried.  We say good bye.

Mom...if I can watch a movie in here with can sleep.  Sure Buddy...why not!  He gets his Kindle because it has his current fav...Toy Story 2.  This is a good one because I have it memorized so when I need to comment...I can in my sleep  :)

When the movie is done....I say its time to get ready for the day and kick the boy out so I can shower.  Then I get our 9 days organized so that we can function while balancing work for me, 1/2 day camp for Nash and Middle College for Sophie all week.

I would like to say this is going to be a breeze...but it won't be.

This is my first Summer that I have worked at a real job.  That Sophie has a life and not my "beck & call" babysitter and Nash is only in 1/2 day camp because Hubby was supposed to be around.  So, it should be an interesting week and if I can do it....I TOTALLY ROCK!

So, here's hoping that Nash stays in bed tonight.  I had to threaten him...because...damn...I am freakin' tired!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

a calendar change for Nash....Wholy Hell Batman!

Since Nash has developed a more distinct side of Autism and it's wonderful spectrum...the calendar has been a friend...and foe!

I have always had a family calendar in a desk type journal and then a weekly wipe-off type on the fridge for quick reference.  My friend Trinity suggested that I make Nash his own calendar to help with any changes in his routine.  This has been a real life saver many times over.


A couple of weeks ago I scheduled an intake meeting with a local agency, VMRC.  I didn't really point it out on the calendar nor did I remember to put it on Nash's calendar!  Between the intake guy and me...we screwed up the date.  I had kept Nash home from school to make him late for school and the intake did not show...'cuz there was a mistake.  When I saw the mistake, it was after hours of waiting and drama...I rushed Nash to school.  Swearing that I would NOT do this again!

So, tomorrow is our new appointment.

On every Sunday.....I erase the old calendar and write the new calendar for the family....and Nash.  I pointed out to Nash that on Thursday, he would be late for camp or could decide to not go to camp that day.  I explained what the appointment was and that was it.  It was being more talking.

It has been a source of anxiety ever since. 

Why do I have see this guy?
Who is he?
Why is he coming to our house?
Why do I have to miss camp?
You can't make me miss camp!
You can't tell me what to do!
I don't want to see this guy!
I hate him...he's mean to me.

The closer it gets....the more anxious Nash becomes.  Yesterday....I had a HUGE light-bulb moment!  I got the notice of appointment, with all the pertinent information on it and showed this to Nash.  He is a concrete thinker...this he can't argue with.  It worked!  It worked for almost 2 1/2 hours.  He was accepting of the appointment and even asked if he COULD go to camp late.

I was feeling pretty good about myself!

Then it started all over again.

Why do I have see this guy?
Who is he?
Why is he coming to our house?
Why do I have to miss camp?
You can't make me miss camp!
You can't tell me what to do!
I don't want to see this guy!
I hate him...he's mean to me.

Today...from the moment I woke up this morning...this is all Nash can talk about.

I am crazed.  I have told Nash that I can NOT talk about this anymore!  It's happening.  Stop talking!

Then my sweet adorable son...became the jerk.  Threw a fork at me.  And threatened to throw another one.  He lost 5 minutes of time before bed.  The evening...SUCKED!

Nash is a mess.  Threatening to runaway tomorrow before the guy comes.

But is quiet.  Nash is drugged up and sleeping.  I am PRAYING that he sleeps the entire night because this is a new thing...sleep.  And honestly....I am really loving the sleep!  SLEEP ROCKS!

I am dreading tomorrow.  The appointment is at, this is potentially, if we are lucky......3 to 4 hours of crazy.  Or Nash will wake up at is usual before the new drugs and the torture will be for 6 hours!

Hubby and I started making plans already for diversion tricks.

Can I just say....I hate Autism.  Not just a little...but a really whole bunch!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

filling out MORE paperwork for an intake interview for services

One of the things I am finding now that all I do it fill out paperwork for Nash, Nash's teacher's, Nash's doctors, psychiatrists and now for possible services....................I should have a rubber stamp made of this info!

Unlike my 1st child, Sophie.  I documented everything with her life.  I even added pages to her baby book to talk more about every little thing she did and when...and save it to memorialize at a later date.  I had nothing better to do.  I was crazy.  I was widowed.  And I had nothing else to do but Sophie.

Nash.  The day Nash was born...I was in labor for over 28 hours.  An damn was hard labor for the last 5 hours!  I pushed like no one had EVER pushed to get that boy outta me!  They even convinced me to get on my feet, and hold on to the back of the lifted up bed....squat and push!  Yeah...if you know me...this!

The boy was stuck!

I asked for the vacuum to suck him out!  I asked for forceps to pull him out.  HE WAS STUCK!

Because of the pre-eclampsia...I was SUPER swollen!  And they had to now do a c-section. saddle block for me.  I was going to have my baby boy with a general anesthesia.  So, I wasn't even there for the one was!

They cut the boy out....took him to father and family....and eventually I woke up and they presented him to me.  With thoughts of a change up...since the boy was a red head....I'd swear...there was a mistake!

I was assured by all involved that this kid was mine.  But, because I was NOT there at his birth...I have a hard time remembering his birth weight, length and time of birth.  I know....terrible Mom!

So now..............................I have to fill out paper work asking all of this information and I don't just know it!  I did not do a baby book for Nash.  I scrapbooked his little life.  So, there is not one page that has every piece of his information....its on hundreds of pieces of scrapbook paper in many albums.

So tonight...I went thru Sophie's babybook and looked up stuff and then thought back to when Nash did that....because they were polar opposites.

So, one day I am going to have to go back and recreate a babybook for Nash.  Because he did everything at a weird time.  I hate paper work!

Sunday, June 9, 2013

school changes to Summer vacation

and no....Nash is not a change lovin' kid!

I never had a clue that Nash was autistic....but I always knew this kid was weird!  But now....that we's like duh!  How did we NOT know?

This week was the last day of school and Hubby's first time experiencing the joy this brings  :)  I always dreaded Summer.  Why?  Other than the was all the crap I had to deal with with my kids. 

We don't like change.


But, I have learned over the years to accommodate and keep Nash moving the first week.  I warned Hubby that this week sucked.  But, really could not explain why...but just assured was awful!

The first day...Thursday.  I got phone calls and text messages of craziness.  I was at work.  And since we had a missing co-worker.....I was picking up some extra hours.  And...don't tell Hubby....but enjoying that I was NOT home!  When I came home on Thursday afternoon...I found a package from Amazon on my bed.....with words written on the box.

In my Hubby's handwriting...I am going to bug you until I get what I want.  I am going to bug you until I get what I want.  Over and over.  I smiled...then got concerned.  My daughter came in and asked if Dad was alright?  I looked at the box and said...nope...he isn't.  And...where is Dad?  Sophie didn't know.

I looked around the house and could see...there had been something going on.

In minutes...Hubby pulls up.  Nash comes in 1st with a handle full of money and declares....this is NOT my money!  Hubby then comes in...looking very tired and very stressed out.  He is talking in crazy circles and then I remember when I was home with Nash. 

I knew.  Someone opened the door and let crazy in!

I tried to talk to Hubby....but he was DONE!  So, I went in to talk to Nash.  In his way...I found out that someone got stuck on stupid and drove Daddy crazy.  And did everything he knew not kill the boy.

Nash broke his favorite chair this morning....and it was all he could talk about.  But, he threw away the chair.  And honestly...has not used the chair in a very long time.  So, it went on...Daddy didn't get it, Nash was stuck...and crazy ensued  :)

Daddy fed crazy all day.

Nash can't unstick himself.  Boy...can that boy focus on a subject!  It was a very long day at my house. 

I may not know the rules to this game...but I have played it many times.  I couldn't explain the game to Hubby but was able to tell him how to stand firm and not get sucked in. 

Like in the "Godfather" movies.

This isn't personal....this is business.
And the business is Autism.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Pinterest organization! YES!

I am an organizing queen!

Yes, I am!  <meta name="p:domain_verify" content="2c093e502cba7cc3ad0b01600af45b31"/>


I always had a calendar and papers on the corner of my counter.  Everything was it was not like I was NOT organized.  But, when I knew people were coming over...I always hid the corner.  I would gather it up and put it in a drawer.  If I was taking a photo...I would crop out that area.

Then the other day...while had a brain dead moment at work....I clicked on Pinterest.  I cruised around and saw this!

I owned a file box like this!

I had file folders!

OMG!  This is a Pinterest pin I have to do!

Do you love Pinterest??  I do...altho I do forget it's there sometimes and try to go it alone.  Then...I remember...Pinterest!  I love Pinterest!

So, this morning....after I got my other stuff was corner time!  

But, I was out of medium sized clips and I needed a calendar because I always use a calendar that goes by the school year...and it will end this month.  So, off to Staples!

Have you seen the Martha Stewart section of Staples???  I do believe it is heaven!  

So, I found the perfect sized calendar for the front of my file box.  And it was a lovely blue that matched the colors of the file box.  AND it was on sale!  

Then I looked for the clips....I am hooked on these.  I use them all the time!  They are great to decorate with paper or just ink.  They are great photo holders...and note holders.  So, found them!  

And because I wanted to have a fresh start on tabs...that all matched!

I got home and threw everything on the table....and cleaned everything thing out.  Moved everything pertinent from the old calendar to the new.  Emptied sad, old paperwork that was not necessary to the garbage and put new stuff in.  Made nice tabs to find everything....and....

Botta bing, Botta boom......

Here it is!

It is so awesome!

In the original Pinterest post...she had her notebook standing up in the back.  I do not have a notebook...I have a file packet for tax receipts.

Normally, I would have to lift a pile off my see my calendar.  But now.....It's AWESOME!