Category - how-to

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Wishing You A Very Hairy April Fools’ Day
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Digital Health Rocks My World
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Merry Halloween — What To Do With Left Over Candy
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Summer Snipe Hunt
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Do You Have A “Special Needs Script?”
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I’m so full of it, it’s no wonder my eyes are brown
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Disney Surprise Scavenger Hunt (video and clues)
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My Mandate To Hydrate
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Use These Potty Training Incentives To Achieve Toiletting Triumph

Wishing You A Very Hairy April Fools’ Day

  As usual I’ve left April Fools’ prank planning to the last minute. I toyed with the idea of trading our bald skinny pig with a friend’s furry guinea pig for the day. My children would awaken on April 1st to find bald-as a-baby’s-bottom Ernie had suddenly sprouted hair over night. Fun, right? Probably not as fun for my friend’s kids who would awaken to the shock of finding a bald guinea pig. That kind of sh*t leaves emotional scars. Thinking I’ll shelf that idea. For now. Speaking of cavy savvy gags, back in 2000, The Independent newspaper in the UK reported that researchers had developed a Viagara-like pill to treat sexually frustrated pets. The article claimed there was nothing as sad as a pet suffering from feelings of sexual inadequacy, noting “It’s not unknown for a guinea pig to sit in its cage thinking, ‘I haven’t had sex for months. Am I so unattractive?” Owners were instructed to grind the pills and sprinkle into the pet’s food. The pills were to be marketed under the brand name Feralmone. LOL! Do you include pets in your April Fools’ pranks? Do you even play any pranks at all? Or do you[…]

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Digital Health Rocks My World

Since I’m a pragmatist (yet another -ist in our lengthy “ist list”) I compiled our daughter’s complex medical history—doctor and therapist information, appointment dates, test results and educational assessments in one central and portable location…hence the behemoth medical binder I took with me to every single appointment. This journey began nearly seven years ago—pre Twitter and when Facebook was still in its infantile “Lisa is feeling….” stage. Fortunately, chat rooms and message boards were readily available and I embraced both eagerly and gratefully. I was able to connect online with other parents of children with special needs and received support and valuable information. Mothers with older children reached out to me, a frightened mom of a small child with a fragile future. They held my hand virtually and showed me the way. Seven years ago if you asked me about an iPhone I’d have said, “I phone who? I phone you later.” My cell was a flip phone held together with tape. Data plans referred to daddy’s weekend golf game, and camera phones, iCloud, digital calendars/reminders belonged in the realm of George Jetson. But now, in a blink of an eye, we live in a whole new wonderful Wi-Fi world.[…]

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Merry Halloween — What To Do With Left Over Candy

Halloween is terrifying. I’m not talking ghosts or ghouls or gore — I’m referring to the other G-Word — gluttony. Specifically mine. If there’s a Kit Kat or Coffee Crisp bar within a 500 foot radius, I will find it and I will put it in my mouth. So what are we “willpower challenged” to do at Halloween? Of course I buy treats that hold as little appeal to me as possible in case of left-overs. But then there’s the problem of the kids’ treats they bring home. Away at school all day, me at home…their candy calls to me seductively like a mythological siren. So in an attempt to limit my junk intake (because let’s get real… I AM  going to steal their treats) here are five ways to re-purpose candy for the next big holiday…Christmas!              If you think that keeping your paws of the candy for fifty-five days is a tad unrealistic (which for me, it probably is) then you might try one of these alternatives. 1. Host a “Build Your Own Sundae” party and set the candy out in bowls to use as toppings. 2. Add a little to trailmix or[…]

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Summer Snipe Hunt

  You’ve likely been up to your water wings in summer fun; swimming, tubing, star gazing, firefly catching, marshmallow toasting, hopscotching, bubble blowing, Geocaching, slipping and sliding and just exploring the great outdoors. But have you tried snipe hunting? Before you imagine the Thornbury clan decked out in coveralls with a deer strapped to the roof of the mini-van, let me explain. The boys trying their hand at paintball this summer. FYI, paintball pellets pack a sting, but boy did they have fun! The origin of the term the ‘Snipe Hunt‘ is based on a practical joke where inexperienced campers are told about a bird or animal called the snipe along with preposterous methods of catching it, such as running around the woods carrying a bag or making strange noises. Real snipe (a family of shorebirds) are difficult to catch, so much so that the word “sniper”is derived from it to refer to anyone skilled enough to shoot one. Source Last summer our son went out east to New Brunswick to help his uncle and family set up the cottage they bought on a shimmering lake. My husband went too. It was an ideal boys’ get away. They swam, they[…]

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Do You Have A “Special Needs Script?”

Writing a movie script? Fun!   Writing a script for your child to have on hand for when peers, out of ignorance or curiosity, call his younger sibling a “retard“? Not quite as much fun. But it’s important to arm kids who have a sibling with special needs with the words to thwart such attacks. And what about the parents of children with a disABILITY? Parents like me with soft hearts and thin skin. There was a time when I considered having cards made up to hand to strangers who stared or made unsolicited comments. I thought by having the words written out, I’d be better able to explain without getting emotional. Since then, my skin has thickened an inch or two and with time and experience and I now welcome the opportunity to address them directly, and calmly. Usually. More often than not, people are receptive upon hearing the information when delivered in a respectful manner. And yes, the “respectful” tone employed for such exchanges takes effort. Look out Meryl Streep — the Best Actress award goes to… Addressing adults — check. I seem to have that under control. Minus the time when that crusty awful woman shushed us.[…]

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I’m so full of it, it’s no wonder my eyes are brown

The plans, the promises, the proclamations. I honestly believe in them…at the time. I am quick to jump on passing bandwagons, with every intention of remaining seated until the ride comes to a full and complete stop. However, I have a history of falling off said bandwagons the minute they hit a bumpy patch of terrain. Here are few of my plethora of passionate initiatives that have hit the bricks: Karma Cleanse I stuck with it for awhile. I did. And most days I strive to keep it alive, but there are days, man are there days, when I soak up catty gossip like a bun to gravy. Mmmm, gravy.   Mandate to Hydrate I know how important water is — for my health, for my skin, for energy, for weight control. So why don’t I drink more? Last week I downloaded an app called ‘Drink Right’ that actually beeps and tells me how much to drink and when. Hopefully this will help me bathe my insides with H2O.   Lisa Leftover Quest for Balance This epiphany seemed to fall on deaf ears. MY deaf ears. I really need to learn to listen better.   Making myself unavailable Ya, that[…]

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Disney Surprise Scavenger Hunt (video and clues)

  We finally did it. We decided. We’re going to Disney World!! We booked it! The most fun was deciding how to spring the news to our kids! Step-by-step Disney for Newbies planning post here. A scavenger hunt with the final clue as the big reveal would be our tactic. Twenty clues hidden around the house with various props and off we went.  The video of how it went is next, but before you watch, let me say… “Wow, that sure didn’t go the way I had imagined.“ Our nine year old was not thrilled about me taping the scavenger hunt. He told me afterwards that he felt self-conscious which is painfully evident when you see his reaction.You’d think we’d told we were going on a trip to the dry cleaners. * yawn *  He said he knew I’d show the video to “the world” {Um kid, I think you’re grossly overestimating your mother’s blog reach} so he didn’t want to over-act and chose to play it cool. Oh dear, it looks like we’ve reached “that stage” where his life is now his and not his mother’s to parade around on the internet. Oh well, it was fun while it lasted. Plus, I[…]

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My Mandate To Hydrate

  Gator skin, flakey fingernails that won’t grow beyond the boundaries of their nail beds, hair resembling a wheat field at harvest time… I’m in the midst of a dry spell. What could be missing from my daily routine that could be responsible for this desperately dry situation? I drink at least one glass of water a day so…. oh wait. Mystery solved. Our bodies are 70% water so I’m guessing it’s a tad important. I like water (especially with a little squeeze of lemon) so I’m at a loss as to why I’ve been avoiding it.  I have decided to end this drought and made a plan to liquify my assets so-to-speak and came up with a Mandate to Hydrate. I vow to drink water all day, every day for a week, and then *graph my results. The first day I may have overdone it. When my teeth started floating, I knew I had H2Overdosed. Day Two, I sipped water sensibly throughout the day (not madly gulping tumblers-full like a college freshmen at a Kegger like Day one). By lights out I had consumed about nine glasses of water. I felt good; maybe a little bloated, but in a[…]

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Use These Potty Training Incentives To Achieve Toiletting Triumph

  My girl likes to potty all the time, potty all the time, potty all the tah-hime! Well, NOW she does anyway. For the first 51/2 years of her life she wasn’t on board with the whole toilet sitch.    Potty training ANY child takes time and patience and patience. Did I mention patience? Potty training a child with developmental delays is even more “special.”  I wrote about past Herculean efforts to get this girl out of diapers and into some stylin’ Dora underpants here (tricks like these generally work wonders for most kids). Alas we tried, we failed, and we did a sh*t load of laundry. She just wasn’t ready. Over the Christmas holidays we tried again. This time instead of sinking into the bowels of hell, we were triumphant. It’s slightly ridiculous, but here’s what worked: We choose a quiet week where we would be at home most of the time. I told Avery there were lots of babies who needed diapers and asked if it would be okay to give them hers? Of course, she said NO!  This girl has a serious Pull-Up addiction. When I hid her diapers anyway, she tore the house apart looking for them.[…]

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