Friday, January 25, 2013

Curriculum Writing 101

About a year ago I was sitting in a Starbucks with a client from Enrich All, working on their social enrichment plan (something I created while working with Enrich All), when I was approached by a man and his business card.
He told me he was over hearing my conversation and ideas and was hoping to meet with me to discuss his website and my enrichment plans.
I was a bit skeptical at first- but after visiting his website and reading reviews, I realized this dude was legit and I ought to hear him out.

After a business meeting, he offered me a spot as a Curriculum Writer for the online autism community, Mundo Pato. (

My Job:
I am to write a curriculum for families, guardians, professionals who live and breathe Autism- Social Enrichment for the Transition Years.
Through my curriculum, the families/ professionals will learn how to:
1. Develop their loved one's self worth.
2. Create a social enrichment plan for their loved one.
3. How-To Guide to put the plan into motion.

It has been MORE than a challenge to get this project done, but today, Jake took the Ladies to the beach for the weekend, my mom is here watching the Fella, and I have three days to pound out the first draft!

It's ON!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Organization: A LARGE Challenge

My brain may never regain its full function, and for someone whose brain was a scallywhompis mess in the first place- this can be trouble!

Organization and I have never been the best of buds. I'm pretty rad at living a minimizing life; where the clutter is kept in control by just not having a whole lot to control- but with three kids and countless house is starting to look like my brain:
A scallywhompis mess.

I'm going to show some pictures.
These pics may or may not bring shame upon our clan- but that is a risk I am willing to take.
These pictures are of our spare bedroom, downstairs, that I have wanted to turn into my craft room. So far, it sits as our "catch all", aka my skeleton.

Over the next few days I will be chipping away at this hoard.
I will not buy anything new, but use what I have already- just use it more effectively (or maybe just start using it in the first place)!

So- without further hoard:

Friday, January 11, 2013

Bandana Bibs

I fell in love with bandana bibs a bit ago, and was so excited to make a few for our Cowboy Crew.
Today I got my chance.
(Thank you Grandma and Grandpa for wonderful puzzle time distraction!)
I found a totally rad tutorial on fast and easy! I made these two in thirty minutes today.
(Cowboy Crew is pretty fab at modeling if you ask me).

Sunday, January 6, 2013

GF Pantry UpDate

I asked my mom in law to keep her eyes open for rad glass jars while she hit up her Goodwills and antique joints.
This past Christmas I got a gift of TEN totally fab jars to add to my GF pantry.

Gf AP Flour mix
Gf AP Bobs Red Mill flour
Powdered sugar
Brown sugar
Corn meal
Gf Oats
Gf pasta
Gf Pancake Mix

Thanks Claudia!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Easy Breezy HUMMUS

Perfect lunch or snack:
Hummus, chips and veggies.
My sister's mom in law gave me a rad recipe for simple hummus.
Today I added a bit of Tabasco, tomorrow I'm using black beans and roasted peppers! (Coral...totally bitchin!)
1/2 lemon
15 oz garbanzo beans
1/4 cup tahini
1/4 cup water
Med. clove garlic
Salt to taste
Mix in cuisinart!
Enjoy!!! (Thanks Coral!)

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Heartbreak City: Loving Town

We had been getting spoiled.
Living so close to a family (and their kids) who loved us and kept us safe from uncertainty. Giving Quinny predictability and play.


Without a doubt, the most challenging aspect of being a mama to our Lou is watching her TRY (so hard) to navigate the mines of the social world.
Constantly asking questions to her peers.
Constantly miss judging social cues and phrases.
Being outcasted and pushed aside.
Anxiety and insecurity turning into mini melt downs and fixations.

What I saw yesterday was not a group of kids who were not mean kids- what I saw was a group of good kids getting frustrated with Aspergers & SPD and the quirks that come with such.

It took about an hour of being Quinn's interpreter/ play therapist for me to need to go downstairs and cry. (Yes, I cried in a new friend's house).

I was reminded of how much work we have in front of us.
How hard it is going to be for Lou.
How hard it is going to be for Lou's siblings.
How hard it is going to be for Lou's Mommy and Daddy.

Teaching a 4 year old every aspect of "play".
Teaching a 4 year old what sarcasm is and how to detect it.
Teaching a 4 year old what body language is.
Teaching her these skills all a while keeping her self worth alive and well.
Ya. Hard.
But- We can do this!

Hind sight, maybe going to a new house with new rules and expectations (with a ton of kids) was not the best idea.
Having new friends over to our home, where Quinny's environment is predictable will give her the opportunity to actually learn the play skills she so desperately WANTS to learn. Enabling more friendships to be made and more confidence instilled in our Lou.
As much as Quinny has to learn, I have as much (or more) to sink into this thick skull of mine.
Everyday I am reminded what an incredible gift Jake and I were given. This kid has and continues to teach us a ridiculous amount of life lessons.
We're so excited to help her find her path and her niche in this crazy world- knowing she's got a whole lot of lessons to teach others too.

Here is the other cool part:
Yesterday when I came downstairs to cry, I was met with women who not only cared about my emotions, but they cared about Quinny!
They gave us a safe platform to learn and grow and feel supported.
It might have been heartbreak city yesterday, but we were in Loving Town with fabulous families.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

$3 Doll House

Jake and I wanted to get the kids a doll house for Christmas, but the ones I really wanted were $200 (or more) and that did not include the furniture.

SO- we decided to make a house for the girls, and furnish the interior with that they already have hanging about.

(All we bought were the papers to "wall paper" with- $3).

Found the idea on Pinterest- perfect for us, as we had an extra shelf hanging around:

We then used some old plywood kicking around and added the scrapbooking paper to it.

I made some accessories (picture frames and rugs) by cutting out rectangles of fabrics and fastin' up craft sticks:

And here is the final product! A $3, fun, fabulous home made doll house.

The bedroom:

The Bathroom:

The Yoga Room:

The Dining Room:

The Kitchen:

The Living Room:

Last Holiday Gig

We are SO close!
So close to making it through the most challenging part of the year.
One more gig on the agenda.

A Holiday gathering with some rad mom's and their critters today at 10a.
We (the ladies) bring six frozen meals, and in return, leave the party with six different meals for their families, to freeze. Pretty clever, eh?

I made Chili.

Then, I went on my handy dandy Mac templates, and made a little tag for the tupperware. I first made tags on normal paper to be tied onto the package:

But then I thought I could print the tags off on sticky paper (clever!!)- but after only two printed off, my printer ran out of ink (fail). So I grabbed a sharpie and drew the last two tags.

In the end, I have six chili dinners, with three different wrappings and tags- makes it a bit more charming...and a bit more "Jill".