10 Things You Need to Know About Adopting from Foster Care

Before adopting two awesome kids who came into my life through foster care, I had this idea in my mind that the whole ordeal would be kind of like what happened in Annie. We would just be handed a precocious, well-adjusted child that we would rescue from their dire straits through love and perseverance and possibly a few well-timed choreographic musical numbers. The truth is that it’s infinitely more complicated than that, although it is equally thrilling and wonderful—minus the giant mansion and, sadly, Punjab. We could all use a little Punjab in our lives. ...more
AdoptUSKids thank YOU for continuing to advocate for adoption from child welfare! It's so ...more

Symptoms of autism REVERSED in mice by 100-year-old drug

NOW THIS is pretty interesting. Researchers at the University of California-San Diego School of Medicine have found a way to reverse the symptoms of autism in mice (which are actually very similar to humans in brain structure).Using a 100-year-old drug called "suramin," which used to be used to treat something called "African sleeping sickness," they blocked the signaling pathway of damaged cells. ...more

The Walls Come Tumbling Down: Fears Dissolve With a Simple Hello

The faces of children do not lie. Many kids are not exposed to special needs children often. The shock on their faces, the stares, the fear is hard to disguise. They don't know what to do. A few days ago, I walked with my son to the end of the line at his track meet. Two girls stood in front of him, each holding their metal shot put ball in their hand. My son's motions are sometimes jerky. He's often loud and unpredictable. His speech is to most people, incomprehensible. We stood behind them. Their eyes darted back and forth to each other. They had no idea what to do. ...more
nomorenicegirl  :-) That's terrific, for both kids.more

Six Ways to Get Styling: Fashion for the Single and Very Special Mom

With no time to dress, there's still a way to dress to "kill." Knowledge, organization, and a keen eye takes fashion to a new level for a mom in need of a wardrobe and no extra time to fret about it. The clothes have to be easy to wash; ready to wear; and fit into the finances. I am not an expert on clothes - far from it. My power comes from others. There's an amazing group of women out there that have the information to help us all pull together a wardrobe we can turn eyes with, wash and wear, and bend over backwards in comfort. ...more

Birdman, The Giver: Movies to See; Actors to Watch for a Lifetime

Michael Keaton stars in a new film, Birdman. Got to see it? Yes. Know what it is about? ...more

An Open Letter To My Son's Teachers On This, His Last Day Of Elementary School

Dear Teacher, Aide, Therapist, Learning Support Staff, Secretary, Principal, Counselor, Nurse, Janitor, and Cafeteria Worker:For five years, you have taught my son.Some of you are shaking your head thinking, "I'm not a teacher..." but I'm here to tell you that yes, you are.When I sat down six years ago at the County Intermediate Unit with a group of teachers and therapists, and representatives from the school district, I remember quite vividly that I held a pen in my right hand. I did this for two reasons.First, I knew there would be paperwork....more
At one time it was all so terrifying. What a great story of making it one day at a time. You've ...more

Twenty Years of Loving and Hating Barney

The sugar-coated voice, the short bouncy arms, the spunky kids, Barney and his whole act drove me nuts. I declared my children would never watch such things. Barney was outlawed from my home. But Barney was everywhere: birthday parties, schools, and of course the television.My daughter shrugged her shoulders at the purple dinosaur - she could take it or leave it. Along came my son and everything changed.I found the camps tough on both sides of Barney. There were those that loved him or hated him....more
I'm a Barney fan because my daughter loved him so much.more

Institutionalization: "Isn't there some place you could put her?"

Without a doubt, the worst thing anyone has ever said to me concerning my special needs daughter is, "Isn't there some place you could put her so you can have a better, more normal life?"Isn't that just what every mother of a child with disabilities wants to hear?...more
nomorenicegirlc Yes!  I agree.  Each of our journeys will not look the same, but will be the ...more

Schools, Guns, Death: A History of Violence Ready to Change

Across the fields and over the hills, into the cities, and behind the desks, children, teachers, and parents are gunned down - even Wikipedia lists a School Shootings as a page.  The list begins with the 1800s. Students, teachers, parents, and lovers killed each other with the school as a backdrop. A look at the history of the murders reveals a past woven with many tales of anger, revenge, and sadness....more

Facing Father's Day as a Single Parent: Building Support One Choice at a Time

As single parents, we face either Mother's Day or Father's Day alone. Our kids trot to school and make cards, paint projects, and wrap love with all their might around the gifts they bring home. What do we do when the other parent isn't around?...more