Saturday, January 31, 2009

Of Mice and Men

Bubba and I were going through a book of presidents and once we were done he asked me where Geranimo Stilton was as he flipped through the pages. Who in the hell is Geranimo Stilton? Some president I never heard of? Possibly. There are a lot of those.

Nope. I found out from Google that Geranimo Stilton is a mouse. Go figure. Bubba then ran off to watch Stuart Little 2. Maybe there's a connection there somehow. Still not sure what that has to do with presidents.

Can't type much more. Now that Bubba knows I can Google names and find out things, he keeps asking me to Google every time he hears/sees a name in Stuart Little 2.

Does your library have this stuff?

We are fans of our local library. Always have been. For the past year or so, I've been downloading audio books and recently I realized we can download e-books. And it's all free. Bubba already spent 20 minutes reading this one. And I've got me eye on books like this. Seriously, if the boys say "I want to know more about sharks" I can show them a pretty pdf rather than a web page. Now don't get me wrong, I like anything where I can find information, but sometimes those web pages have too much to weed through.

Now, I am a big fan of THE BOOK, so you won't see me relying solely on "E" anything when it comes to "reading." We have hundreds of books, but can't have every single this a nice resource. Especially if it's snowy outside and your kids want to know more about dinosaurs or whatever RIGHT NOW. And I can't say "No" to learning, even if it's at 11:30 PM. So this is good, because the library would be closed.

So if you haven't yet, find out if your library does something similar!

Friday, January 30, 2009

A lot can happen in a week

I apologize for being quiet here... but wow, what a week!

Last week I gave a presentation to The Missouri Planning Council for Developmental Disabilities - Education Committee. The committee voted to bring the issue in front of the council and the council (hopefully) is expected to approve "supporting" legislation in the restraint and seclusion issue. Within a matter of days, a bill is being drafted and there are two potential sponsors (Senators). I have been working like crazy updating the site I started a year ago. I have been advocating through e-mail and on the phone more than I have since...well, if you have children with disabilities you are always on the phone or e-mailing someone about something trying to resolve a problem, prevent something, or hold someone accountable, or get something to change! Check out the site and give me your feedback. It's a blog, so I'm limited...but if you are smart like that, help me fix things like making the blog let me put thing in the order I want them as opposed to chronologically. Grrr. I can't devote much time on this since I'm spending time on the actual issue.

I am going to DC in March to further educate myself on and advocate about this issue (and I get to meet Stimey!). I am going to the State capitol in February and March.

I have suspended my freelance work until late Spring so that I can focus on this issue (and um a "schooling" issue I have been purposely vague about...). I am scared shitless. Like really scared. It's not like I made a ton, but it was supplemental income that we live on month to month.

But, because things just work out sometimes, we found out today that Hubby is moving to a store 5 minutes away (right now he has about a 60-90 minute commute (round trip). This alone will save us $300 or more a month in gas (and food costs since Hubby so often 'forgets' to bring his lunch!). not to mention that he can come home during lunch when he wants or go to meetings/appointments for the boys...and we can drop by and grace him with our presence when we are running around. And for someone as anxiety ridden as myself, it's good to know he is minutes away in case there is any emergency.

So there you have it.

Friday, January 23, 2009

End the Abuse

I, along with thousands of other parents, persons with disabilities, and advocates, am trying to ban the use of seclusion rooms and abuse of restraints in our public schools.

Please take a look at Zach's story: There is a video. It is kind of small, but I can't upload it properly to youtube right now because it's giving me trouble for using a particular song. There are also some areas that are difficult to read, but I will be working on those as well.

Most importantly, show your support and pledge to stop this here: actions/view/end_the_use_of_ aversives_restraints_and_ seclusion

Please note, this is not an issue only affecting those with autism, but all individuals with disabilities.

Talk to your legislators, talk to the media, share this and let people know that this is going on. Share your story anyway you can.

Please e-mail me if you have a personal story. And if you have a child with a disability in the school system now--even if you don't think it is possible for them to be restrained or secluded--consider sending a letter to try and prevent this from happening to your child (


Thursday, January 22, 2009

Bubba's Story

I finished the video to introduce my restraint and seclusion presentation on Thursday.

Press play. Sorry for the size, Youtube is giving me grief for using an mp3. I did buy the song and I have it on a soundtrack CD somewhere. I don't like breaking rules, so now I gotta go figure this out.

You can read more of Bubba's story here.

Got the youtube version working:

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


I am an idealistic person. If I am inspired, I can do so much more. And let me tell you, I am inspired. As I prepare for an informal presentation to a state committee on Thursday on the abuse of restraint and seclusion, these words from President Obama's speech today tremble within me:

We remain a young nation, but in the words of Scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things. The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea, passed on from generation to generation: the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness.

I believe in equality. Do nothing out of pity, because that implies inequality.

So I ask of you as president Obama stated:

...extend opportunity to every willing heart — not out of charity, but because it is the surest route to our common good.

Today I remind myself to not tell my children that "life isn't fair", but instead teach them about fairness. I will not tell them "that's the way the world works", but instead show them how to change it. And I will not just tell my children these things, but I will also live by them.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

NDRN Seclusion and Restrain National Report

Cross posted

Share this with your local media outlets and government officials!

Read the national report regarding restraint and seclusion, released on January 13, 2009, here.

News article here.


URLS for copy and paste:

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Happy Birthday Bubba!

You are nine years old, and I love you with all of my heart, more than I ever thought I could love another human being. I finished your video like I promised. It's not exactly like I had hoped, but it's done. And you know as well as me, that sometimes, well, that's all that matters.

You are the spark in our lives, and we love you. Thank you for pushing our boundaries; we are so much more because of you.