Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Follow up

Its not that bad.  I can live with this for 4 years.

You have to look past the "j" that's picking my nose.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Our Autism Center

A couple of weeks ago, I received an email from the local Autism Center that they had unexpectedly lost their funding and were going to have to shut down most of their services.  Oh no!  That's included Jakes therapeutic riding at the Farm.  Double Oh NO!

After many phone calls with Ms. Jill, we decided that Jakes could still go to the farm and work with the horses and the instructors (which Jakes LOVES) but he wouldn't be able to get a true lesson.  Ok, we can deal with this.  At least he has the opportunity to be with the horses and his friends.

This is on the wall of the conference room of our Autism Center
Pieces made by kids and their families

Last night I stopped by the Open House at our Autism Center.  They had been donated a building, raised funds and worked day and night with volunteers to create office and therapy spaces for our Autistic kids.  They have vowed to continue to provide services as much as they possibly can.  Just last night, they had enough in donations to start services once again!  Its amazing that the community came together for this wonderful organization!

They will continue their fund raising activities and are looking for volunteers to help with that.  Since they have done some wonderful stuff for Jakes and I am a grant writer, I have volunteered my services.  I can't let this opportunity pass to give back to a place that has done wonderful things for me and so many others in Southern New Jersey.


The Autism Center is a non-profit organization and is always accepting donations!  Contact me via private message for more details!

ESM loved this one of the crab

Remember, 1 in 50 kids are diagnosed on the Autism Spectrum! 

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

New Toy

Jaxon got a new toy because this happened to the old one....

I broke it picking up the ball to throw for him
bad momma

Happy Dog!

Tired Dog!
this was after chasing the ball about 15 times!
He loves to run!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Tuesday Tidbits

It was a busy weekend.  No Jakes, though.  We're on a break.  But we're talking via text messages.  That's all good for now. 

The school sent the final IEP, which basically said he doesn't need anything from them!  He is still diagnosed on the Autism Spectrum but he doesn't need anything special to allow him to learn.  He can learn in the same environment as all the other kids in the classroom.  I'm so proud of him!  He has learned SO much to be able to move away from the IEP. 

One of the teachers in the meeting stated that Jakes knows how to advocate for himself.  If there is something he needs, he is not afraid to ask for it.  I'd like to think I taught him that skill, with all the fighting for his services I've done over the years.

As usual, his father didn't bother to attend the meeting.  This was a BIG meeting and he should have been there.  But that's his father.  He'll never change.

Jakes report card reflects good grades as well.   All A's and C's.  And the C's are in subjects with lots of reading and writing, which is something he struggles with and knows it.  He does the best he can in those subjects and I am proud of him for his efforts.

I had a wonderful brunch date with ESM.  We went to a local place that was having a spring fling bazaar and buffet.  The food was good and the vendors they had there were lovely!  They had lovely stuff there.  I shared my Scentsy business card with lots of them, even though I wasn't there for Scentsy.

We have our first camping trip of the season planned for Mother's Day weekend.  We will be going back to the same camp ground as last year.  We are even in almost the same spot as last year.  I don't know if I like that or not.  I think I'd like to see a different part of the camp ground. There wasn't anything wrong with our site last time, it was nice and level and was close to the bathrooms.  Daddy and ESM will be meeting us there as well that weekend.

I have to get my drivers license renewed and can't decide if I want to get my hair cut first.  Then of course I have to remember to put on make-up.  I don't know, maybe this would be ok for a drivers license.  BUT I need to like it for four years.....  Tell me what you think......

That's all for now folks!  Have a great Tuesday!

Friday, April 19, 2013

The Apology

Yes, I got an apology from my Jakes.  And he did it on his own. 

I sent him a picture of Jaxon and that started a quick text conversation with Jakes apologizing.  I apologized as well because I wasnt very nice to him once he started acting like a miserable teenager.

We are going to take this weekend off and then have dinner next week to see where we go from there.

So happy!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Tidbit Tuesday

Saying lots of prayers for everyone in and around Boston who has been affected by the horrific bombings there.  I"m also praying that the law enforcement agencies there are able to find the sicko(s) who did this.

Last week we found out that our Autism Center is closed. There was a simple email asking us for patience while they analyzed things to see where they could go with the new lack of funding.  Then Jill at the Farm heard that the Center wouldn't be paying for any services going forward.  This is not a good thing for the kids who need help with transitions!  To have their services (there were many in addition to the Equine Therapy) yanked from them with no notice.  I know there are many parents who have been doing a mad scramble to get things in place to keep their kids moving forward.

Jill and her group of wonderful parents are working together to find funding to continue the Equine Therapy for the Autism Kids.  They are planning a Chinese Auction and I am keeping my eyes pealed for grants that would work for the Farm.

Jakes and I had another blow out this weekend.  He's not speaking to me and has said that he won't be coming to see me EVER.  giggle.  And until he apologizes for his mouth and his other behaviors from this past weekend, I don't want to hear from him either.

For now, Jakes and I are not talking and he says he won't be coming back to my house ever.  We'll see how long that lasts, probably until his dad annoys him and he needs to get away from his father.  But he'd better be ready to apologize to me before he's allowed in my house again.

Things between AZ and I are going really well.  He has been awake and sober and we are both participating in the relationship.  I have hope again!  We are planning a camping trip for Mothers Day weekend.  We're going to stay local, its cheaper!  Dad and ESM are going to meet us at the campground where they will have their own site just down the road.

JR and his friends have made the camper their "man cave" over the winter and AZ has already told them they will be cleaning it before we leave.  I said I'm not touching it, its all their responsibility.

AZ and I are planning to put in a garden.  I can't wait to get the ground tilled and get some plants in there!  Fresh veggies over the summer!  Oh YUM!

My Spring Concert is coming up soon.  The choir is working hard to get the right notes and words in place.  I love working with my voice!  I'll miss this over the summer.

Well, that's about all that's going on my little corner of the world.  How's things where you are?

Monday, April 15, 2013

Its a Manic Monday

Its a Manic Monday!  I'll see ya'll tomorrow!

Friday, April 12, 2013


Jakes had a BIG week! 

He graduated from Special Education!

Yes, THIS giggle face!

This Giggle Face has worked so hard over the years to learn everything we have thrown at him, academically, emotionally, and socially.

Way to go, my Jakes!  I love you!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

My Creative Side

I want to decorate my kitchen with a wine theme.  I've collected some things, a wine bottle here, a cork there.  Little things.  I love the kitchen in this house.  Its HUGE!  There is room for my dining table (with the leaf in) and an island.  It has a great layout, lots of counter and cabinet space.

About a month ago, we painted the walls and AZ talked me out of painting the cabinets because it would be a HUGE undertaking.  And once we scrubbed them, they didn't look too bad.  Ok.  I'll be lazy, this time.

The walls are bare though.  I really need to get my wine stuff up around the kitchen. But first I wanted something to spruce up the alcove where the sink sits.

The Kitchen Sink - Before

I am a short-stack (as Jakes has taken to calling me) and needed a stool to get up there and it was a little awkward sitting on and behind the sink.  yikes!

Kitchen Sink - After

Looks pretty good, right?  I'm pleased with it.  Its far from perfect because I am not a trained painter.

A close up

It can be painted over easily if we move out of the house.  I was teasing AZ that he has to take the wall down so I can take it with me.  He just laughed at me.  Maybe I was serious.........

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Duck, Duck, No Goose!

They were hanging around the park where we flew kites.

Duck Duck, NO Goose

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Therapy Tuesday

Here I am flip flopping again.  I'm so confused.  And worried that I'm getting played.

After not talking to each other for most of last week and me deciding that I was leaving, AZ and I have been talking again.  Not just about us and the reasons we are struggling (yes, there have been those conversations) but about life in general. And enjoying each other again.  I spent a wonderful weekend with him and our families.

He was awake and participating in things at the house (he helped me move furniture so I could mop and dust).  He chatted with my family when they were over for my birthday dinner.  We played with the dog together.  We communicated, we hugged and kissed and we slow danced to 'our song' while making dinner together. Until the kids called.  Damn kids!  Lol

After everyone left, he invited me to come out of my bedroom and watch zombies get their heads blown off with him and JR.  I declined due to the grossness and I was in the middle of a good part on the library book that expired on Monday.

After the Zombies were dead, he came to bed and held me most of the night.  There was a level of intimacy to us that hasn't been there in SO long.

Sunday was more of the same.  After spending the morning snuggling, I went to lunch with my sister and cousin.  Then AZ, JR and I went grocery shopping.  More PDA and silliness throughout the store.  Shopping was actually fun!

He has not asked me to stay.  He has not told me to go.  He did say things would work better for him if I could stay through May at least.  He hasn't said that he would miss me.  He has said that the dog was going to miss him and the yard.  He doesn't want visitation of Jaxon.

He said he doesn't think he's ready to deal with the things that are keeping him down.  He admitted that he is over medicating himself to avoid feeling.....anything.  He doesn't feel like a man.

When I left for work Monday morning, I kissed him and thanked him for the wonderful weekend.  We spent most of Monday texting back and forth over things. 

We have plans to spend some time together alone and I have plans of talking to him more about things then.

Until then, I'm SO CONFUSED!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Jakes Fired Jill

Jakes had a wonderful day at the farm this weekend.  Here is Jill's version of what went down........

Your’re FIRED!

It happened yesterday. I was fired. Not let down easily, but told that I have been replaced by someone much better. You may wonder, how does the owner of a farm get fired? Easily, one of my students fired me. His name is Jacob and I have written in the past about Jacob on my blog. He is quite a colorful fixture at the farm. Jacob has one goal, to someday be an instructor at this farm. The problem, he is scared to death of going any faster than a walk on a horse.

One of my instructors, Tori, brought her mom to the farm. At one time, her mother, Eileen, was an elite equestrian, showing throughout the country, teaching, and managing her own horses at her home. At first Eileen was walking around the ring aimlessly when I encouraged Eileen to help with the lessons. Her face lit up, she would love to help out she told me. She had been rather despondent over the passing of her mother and Tori thought it would be a good idea for her to come out and soak up the fresh air, the excitement of the students, and of course to watch the beautiful horses.

Tori was backed up with lessons and so was I. That’s when Eileen, always the consummate professional stepped up to the plate and volunteered to take the next student, Jacob.

Off Jacob went with Milkshake and Miss Eileen to the round pen. He came back glowing. He was so excited that he said that he had just experienced the best lesson. No one could teach like Miss Eileen, he said. Miss Eileen got him over the fear of trotting. He trotted four times around my 60 foot round pen. This was monumental for Jacob. Judging by the look on her face it was monumental to her too. I saw a tear escape from under her dark sunglasses. Jacob patted her shoulder. She hugged him and he hugged her. They shared what few experience in this world, a mutual respect. He respected her for instilling in him confidence to do what he thought was impossible. She respected him because she learned that she still has the love to inspire others to become their best.

Thanks Eileen for helping out. I believe you were hired by Jacob! I will see you Saturday!

You can check out Jill's original post at :  http://anythingforhorseandrider.wordpress.com/2013/04/07/yourre-fired/

Friday, April 5, 2013

Velata Recipes

As I mentioned before I am a chocoholic.  So when the Scentsy Family came up with the idea of Chocolate Fondue Warmers that were easy to set up and clean up, I jumped on board!  Well, Velata has been around for over a year and there is a new catalog and NEW products!

I know not everyone is into Chocolate the way I am and knowing that, Velata is not offering CHEESE!  Yes, I said it, CHEESE!  It comes in four flavors: creamy cheddar, rich bacon cheddar, bold fiesta queso, and sophisticated smoked gouda.

New Cheeses and New Warmers

Now for my die hard chocolate lovers, Velata has a way to spruce up your chocolate experience too!  Mixables come in 4 flavors for a fusion of palate pleasing flavors.  Just mix your choice of Raspberry, peppermint, orange or mocha into your choice of Velata chocolate and enjoy!   Each one comes with 3 mixable packets.
Orange Mixable

Now, Velata isn't just for dipping.  There are SO many ways you can incorporate Velata Chocolate into a recipe.  This weekend, I made Cheesecake stuffed Strawberries.  Super Yummy!  Or at least that's what I was told by AZ and JR.  The Strawberries disappeared before I got a chance to sample them.

My Creation

Here's the recipe.  Its' Easy Peasy and takes NO time at all to put together.

1 pint fresh strawberries
1 (8 oz) package of cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 graham crackers, finely crumbled

1 pouch Dark Velata Chocolate

Melt and warm Dark Chocolate per pouch instructions and put into Velata warmer

Rinse and dry strawberries. Using a paring knife, cut a small amount off the bottoms of the strawberries so they stand upright.  Remove the stems and hollow out the centers.

In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, sugar and vanilla until smooth and creamy.

Spoon mixture into a zip-close bag.  Snip off a small hole in one corner.  Pipe cheesecake mixture into each strawberry, filling completely.

Dip filled side in graham cracker crumbs.  Using a spoon, drizzle on warmed Dark Chocolate.

Refrigerate until serving (no more than 2-4 hours.)

Let me tell you, they won't stay around  for long!

Here's a video showing how to make the Cheesecake Stuffed Strawberries

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Moving On

Yesterday was my birthday.  And it was a good day.  See it was also the day I decided to move on with my life.  I have written about being a flip-flop on what to do with my life.  I've finally reached the point of no return.

I am done with AZ and the possibility of having a really relationship with him.  I don't know if there was any one thing that pushed me over the edge.  I think I just realized that I am tired of not wanting to come home after work, of spending time in my room because I don't want to listen to his snoring or watch him passed out on the couch.   I don't want Jakes to see that.

I want more. And I'm going to get it.

My friends and family have been wonderfully supportive, even when I was determined to make this work.  And now that I've made the decision to move on, they are being wonderfully supportive again.  Lots of offers to help move and since the new apartment is on the second floor, I'm going to need strong backs!

Any volunteers?  Ha-ha!

When I got home tonight, AZ was apparently having a bad day.  He didn't share with me what all was  wrong, but then we haven't been sharing much of anything lately.   So I added to his already bad day by telling him I was leaving.  He hasn't said anything to me since then.

He never even wished me a happy birthday before I told him I was leaving.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Three-Way WW

Kisses For Everyone!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Light it up Blue!

Today is World Autism Day and I am celebrating by making my life BLUE!

So many people and places will be participating.

You can too!
Just go to www.lightitupblue.org to see how you can help spread the word on Autism

Monday, April 1, 2013

Go Fly A Kite

Jakes and I had dinner together and then went to fly a kite.  Here are some pictures from the adventure.

What a great way to end the Month of March!