Tuesday, July 31, 2012

7 of 10- A Must Read

Yesterday I forgot to take my book with me to work. I typically read while I eat my lunch. I was a little bummed, I had recently started a new book and was hoping to really get into it. But never fear! I opened my NOOK app on my phone and started reading a book recently added to my shelf. No, I didn't break my rule and buy a new book. This book was gifted to me, directly to my NOOK. I didn't even know you could do that! But you can. And my mother did. So technically this book was on my shelf just not as long as many of the others.

The Golden Hat: Talking Back to Autism by Kate Winslet and Margret Ericsdottir. Yes, THE Kate Winslet. Kate met Margret while narrating her documentary. A friendship was born. The Golden Hat Foundation was born. This book was born. A relatively short book, containing numerous pictures (probably better in the actual book than on my NOOK or phone)- it is a moving collection of emails and writings; poetry written by a nonverbal autistic boy. It was a moving story, perhaps touching to me more because I have worked with nonverbal autism.... At any rate, I highly recommend this book and look forward to getting my hands on the documentary that started it all.

For more information about the Golden Hat Foundation visit: goldenhatfoundation.org

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Topsey Turvey

Just seems like the world has gone all wonky lately. Well, maybe just especially wonky of late. I think we've been off kilter for a while now.

You know what I am talking about. Just pull up any news website and you'll find an over abundance of sad, sickening, even sadistic news stories. Not to mention the weather (at least in my part of the world) is simply abnormal it seems. You have to search a little harder for the good news, the positive, the inspiring stories. Maybe we, as society, just thrive on the negative. And what does that say about us?

A friend and I recently discussed all the "stuff" going on in our personal lives that was trying to bring us down. More examples of the screwy world in which we find ourselves. Last night I had to add another incident to the list. I hate to be one of "those" people who makes vague comments, posts, and blogs. However, in order to protect the privacy of the person I care about, I will be vague. We have not spoken about said person's condition an therefore I do not wish to be telling the world of things this person wishes to not share at this time. Regardless, a person I care for immensely is undergoing medical tests after an incident (how's THAT for vague?!). I find myself thinking "I'm not old enough for (fill in the blank) to be happening."

I'm not old enough for my friends/family/parents/children/former babysitees to be experiencing health conditions/graduations/marriage/death.I'm not old enough for this! Then I wonder if I will still be thinking the same thing when I am 50, 70, 90....

Reality check. I AM old enough. It IS happening. Whether I like it or not. And I don't like it. It's not that I'm getting "old," that doesn't bother me. It's all the stuff that is occurring. I don't like it.

I can talk with other people on a daily basis about their lives, but when it happens in mine- when my world gets flipped end for end, I don't feel equipped to handle it. I don't have the life experience necessary to comprehend the upsidedown-ness of my world. I can't make sense of the madness. And then I look at the wider world and see it isn't just my little slice of earth. The craziness is everywhere. And I tread a little more lightly, cut others a little more slack. I don't know how topsey turvey their lives are...

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Wondering- 6 of 10

"It is more important to pave the way for the child to WANT to know than to put him in a diet of facts he is not ready to assimilate" (Rachel Carson, The Sense of Wonder, p. 56, emphasis added).

Whoa! Now that I am a parent, that statement really hits home. I want Punky to be curious and inquisitive and develop her own sense of wonder. I need to not get caught up in facts and statistics and the like.

It has been a long time since I have finished a whole book in one day, let alone one sitting as I did this one. I guess it helps that this book is mostly pictures, amazingly beautiful pictures. This book was sent to me by my cousin- a reminder that it is never too early to be sharing the wonders of our earth with my daughter. And share I will. Her first (out of womb) ocean experience is rapidly approaching. And while the beaches we will visit will be tainted by tourists, there will still b enough nature and naturalness to stimulate her wonder.

Self- thank you for sharing this book with us. I can see it becoming a favorite in our house too.

Monday, July 16, 2012

5 of 10

I actually managed to put Karen Vail aside and read something else on my shelf. Something educational to boot! Autism-Asperger's & Sexuality: Puberty and Beyond by Jerry and Mary Newport. A necessary read in my line of work. And an excellent read at that. Written by a married couple, both on the spectrum. A clear, simple explanation of necessary facts. Highly recommended for those on the spectrum or who have a loved one on the spectrum. Two thumbs up!

Lesson learned? I hope so.

Self-pity is a slimy, bottomless pit. Once you fall in, you tend to go deeper and deeper into the mire. As you slide down those slippery walls, you are well on your way to depression, and the darkness is profound.
Your only hope is to look up and see the Light of My Presence shining down on you. Though the Light looks dim from your perspective, deep in the pit, those rays of hope can reach you at any depth. While you focus on Me in trust, you rise ever so slowly out of the abyss of despair. Finally, you can reach up and grasp my hand. I will pull you out into the Light again. I will gently cleanse you, washing off the clinging mire. I will cover you with My righteousness and walk with you down the path of Life.
Jesus Calling, Sarah Young, July 16

Without going into unnecessary details, might I just say that this was a timely reminder. It is all too easy to focus on the bad, the disappointing, the frustrating negative aspects of life (at least when you tend to be a pessimist, even if you are a "happy pessimist!"). Instead, looking for that glimmer of hope, believing that everything happens for a reason, and repeating my personal mantra (EVERYTHING will be okay. Everything WILL be okay. Everything will be okay...) help that dark cloud pass by more quickly. I know I will never have the answers I seek. And, as difficult as that is to accept, I know searching and fretting will only result in further sinking. For now it is enough to know there is a reason and everything will be okay.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

4 of 10?

Just finished reading "The Marvelous Land of Oz." by L. Frank Baum. Not sure of this technically counts as book four of ten or not. I believe it to be a stand alone book- however I am reading it as part of "The Complete Wizard of Oz Collection" on my NOOK. It follows after the classic tale of " The Wonderful Wizard of Oz." (Which I read a while back and then moved on to other things before returning to the Oz collection.) It is a fun little adventure that I can see sharing with Punky in the future. In fact, I may wait to read te rest of the collection until she can enjoy it with me...

So does this count as book four?

Monday, July 9, 2012


I couldn't do it! I just couldn't resist the temptation and ease of downloading book 1 in the Karen Vail series onto my NOOK.

I know! I know! I had this great goal of reading 10 books already on my shelves and of not buying any new books until I did so. And I failed! Alan Jacobson, you got me. I think it is official that I am hooked on FBI profiler Karen Vail. Book 1 in the series is The 7th Victim and begins the tale of the special agent. I would say it took me about halfway through the book before I got caught up in it. And the end- yep I was surprised! Well done Mr. Jacobson, well done.

Hmm, think I can get through another book already on my shelf? Or will I dive into book number three in the series?

Sunday, July 1, 2012


I am Life and Light in abundance. As you spend time "soaking" in My Presence, you are energized and lightened. Through communing with Me, you transfer your heavy burdens to My strong shoulders. By gazing at Me, you gain My perspective on your life. This time alone with Me is essential for unscrambling your thoughts and smoothing out the day before you.

Be willing to fight for this precious time with Me. Opposition comes in many forms: your own desire to linger in bed; the evil one's determination to distract you from Me; the pressure of family, friends, and your own inner critic to spend your time more productively. As you grow in your desire to please Me above all else, you gain strength to resist these opponents. Delight yourself in Me, for I am the deepest Desire of your heart.

Jesus Calling, Sarah Young, July 1