Monday, December 29, 2008

Knitting for Mental Health

I've recently started learning to knit. I find this to be very relaxing and it helps me to releive stress. It's also great because I can learn a hobby to make useful things. I would really like to learn to knit and stuff toys for my baby when he's a bit older.

Knitting also helps me because I stim a lot with my hands. This, in and of itself, is not a problem, except for the fact that one of the stims I have does cause occasional injury to my hands. Knitting is a great replacement for this stim that serves a useful purpose, as well as stress-relief.

Crochet is an alternative if the sharp looking needles make you nervous.

Just wanted to share that in case anyone else wants to try it. Hope you all have a Happy New Year!


Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Is there something wrong with "perseverating" about animals? Rethinking "social skills" training.

I was just reading an article about increasing social interactions for autistic kids, and was a little bit offended. The child in the study (a teenager) was described as liking to read, watch television, and ride horses. She stated that she enjoys being with animals more than people. Because of her strong interest in horses, her interests were described as "restricted" and the article stated that she "perseverates" about the topic of horses and caring for horses.

Let's "tackle" this one issue at a time. My comments are in bold.

1. The child in the study (a teenager) was described as liking to read, watch television, and ride horses. Sounds like a teenager with some very healthy hobbies and interests to me. Oh, wait I guess we want her to be like the other teens...better start her smoking and going to drunken parties. (That was sarcasm).

2. She stated that she enjoys being with animals more than people. So do I a lot of the time. Animals don't have an agenda, and are often more friendly and forgiving than many people.

3. Because of her strong interest in horses, her interests were described as "restricted" and the article stated that she "perseverates" about the topic of horses and caring for horses. Well, I guess we'd better start some social skills intervention with all of the veterinarians, animal shelter employees, and animal rights activists because they sure devote a lot of their time to animals and their care. (Also sarcasm).

I think that we really need to respect the interests of autistic kids and help them develop them into a future job. I could see a great future for this young lady in some aspect of animal care. What a great field to get into!

But wait, this article was about a social skills intervention to get her away from this interest and be like the other teens. And, sadly, I guess it worked, because here is how the article described one of the successes of the intervention: "Towards the end of the school year, [CHILD's NAME] has made great strides as evidenced in her joining her peer to tease the speech and language pathologist."

Great job, you successfuly taught her to disrespect a teacher to be like her peers. Keep up the good work. (That was the last sarcasm of the post).

I'm not against social skills interventions, in fact, I think they're vital, but let's try to do them in a way that respects all individuals involved.

Thanks for reading, and have a lovely day!

Aspie Mama

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Everybody Stims...Sometimes!

At the encouragement of my husband, we went out on this busy shopping weekend to do, well, some shopping. If you're a regular reader of this blog, you know I'm not a fan of shopping.

As we were checking out at the store, I noticed that the clerk would repeatedly squeeze a small ball while waiting for customers to scan their credit cards, take items out of their carts, etc. This, to me, seemed like a form of stimming.

I belive that stimming is something that we all do. How many people do you know who drum their fingers on tables, twirl their hair, and shake their leg while sitting? These are just a few of the ways that people can "stim." Because people with autism sometimes stim in different ways, such as flapping their hands or jumping and spinning, does that make them that unusual? No.

My stim is that I always need to be doing something with my hands. So, I do needle point. If that's not available, I like to stretch a deflated balloon. :)

We need to be careful when we try to "stop" stimming. It does serve a sensory purpose. If it is a stim that is very disruptive or harmful, try to find something that the autistic person can do that will give them a similar sensory experience.

Please share your thoughts and ideas about how to do this. Thanks!


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

I've met my match..."outliteralled" by my husband!

I'm pretty sure that "outliteralled" is not a word, but what I mean is this. I've finally found someone who takes things more literally than I do. Here's our latest story.

We were walking in a mall with our baby in the stroller. My husband likes to walk much faster than I can keep up with, and was pusing the stroller. I wanted to put something in the stroller storeage basket, so I said, "Can I put this in the stroller, please?"

From way up ahead, he said back at me, "Sure, go ahead."

"Well, I can't reach the stroller when you're way up there."

"Oh, well you didn't say to come back or slow down."

I had figured he would assume that he needed to slow down so that I could catch up to him, and thus, be able to put my item in the stroller.

Just a reminder to those of you with Aspie husbands: say and ask for exactly what you mean! :)

Happy Thanksgiving again!


Sunday, November 23, 2008

How does theory of mind relate to parenting?

I think I'm using the term theory of mind correctly. With the change of seasons, the weather has been getting much colder. I love the cold weather and have a very high tolerance for it. So, I am having to constantly remind myself that, although I don't feel cold, the baby probably is. I need to keep reminding myself to keep him dressed warmly. I feel like I've been successful with this (espcially since I can ask my husband what he thinks, as well as observe other babies in public to see how much they are wearing). I also keep extra socks and blankets in the diaper bag in case the weather changes or is not what I thought it would be.

I was just wondering if anyone else had issues with anything like this?

Thanks for reading, and have a Happy Thanksgiving!


Thursday, November 20, 2008

Don't Forget to Visit AspieMama's Links!

Just wanted to remind everyone that there are links at the bottom of this page. Just scroll down to see Asperger's links, parenting links, and Aspie parenting links. Please send me an e-mail if you know of any other links I should consider adding. Have a great weekend!


Thursday, November 13, 2008

So mad at my husband, I can barely type!

I will usually try to keep the tone of this blog upbeat and positive, but I really need to vent about something and hopefully get some advice.

My husband recently lost his job (stupid US economy!), so I took on another job. My husband did not go to college and I did, so this just made logical sense since I can earn more. He now stays home with the baby, while supposedly looking for a part time job.

Well, he readily admits to me that he does nothing all day but watch the baby! I come home to find the house a mess, dishes and laundry not done, the cats not fed, etc. Here are some of the things he says he does during the day (other than watch the baby):

- Play video games,
- Watch TV, and
- Take a nap.

The "job of the day" is still working well, and he does do one or maybe two other small cleaning jobs, but I used to do so much more while I was home with the baby. So now, after working two jobs, I still need to wash all of the dishes, do all of the laundry, take care of our pets, and do all of the other "daily" type chores. I usually only get about 6 hours of sleep per night, while he gets his full 8, plus naps during the day! And he's doing nothing about finding a job!

I have tried making an emotional plea about how tired I am, about how much work I have to do, etc. This does not matter to him. I have tried making a list of all of the chores I do in a day, to compare to how much he does. This did not matter to him. I tried using a stopwatch that I started each time a started a chore, and stopped it each time I finished to record how much time I spent doing chores each day. This did not matter to him. He says that I work so much slower than him, so those times don't matter.

Any other ideas for how I can get through to him?

Thanks! Have a great weekend! I'm already looking forward to it! :)


Saturday, November 8, 2008

An Aspie Goes to Aerobics Class

I recently joined an aerobics class for babies and moms. As an Aspie who's a bit uncoordinated, this has been an interesting experience. It often seems that I have a difficult time following some of the instructor's demonstrations of different exercises. I have to watch her for longer than the other class members to be able to imitate the movement. Not sure if this has anything to do with Asperger's or not.

I am also horribly out of shape, so I am using the lightest resistance on the muscle exercises, often become worn out before the other members of the class. When we do walks around the area with our strollers, I am also often the last person to finish the lap.

However, I still feel great about myself for doing the class. Even though I'm almost always last, and I probably look goofy doing the exercises, I remind myself that I could just be sitting at home not exercising at all. This makes me feel like I'm not really finishing last at all.

I would really encourage you all to join a gym or exercise class. I think it's so easy for us Aspies to want to sit at home with our books, computers, video games, etc. But, it's very important to take care of your health. If joining a class or gym is not an option or is not appealing, there are a variety of exercise or yoga DVDs that you can do in your home.

Take care,


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Halloween Candy Update

Just in case you were having trouble sleeping at night while wondering what Halloween candy I chose (ha ha...just kidding), you now have an answer. I chose peanut butter cups because:

- They had a small number of ingredients.

- They did not have many artificial colors or ingredients.

- I figured that chocolate has some milk in it and peanut butter has some protein in it, so it might be one of the healthier choices.

I also found a really neat bag of tiny plah-doh cans. The black play-doh was actually a big hit with the kids!


Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Your Rights as a Voter with a "Disability"

Well, Tuesday is election day here in the United States. I'm frankly not totally happy with either major candidate. I've often thought of myself as half-Republican and half-Democrat, so that always makes choosing tough! :)

I've compiled a list of some resources to help voters with "disabilities." (I keep putting that in quotes, because I don't like to think of myself or others as "disabled"). (go to page 7 of this newsletter for the info).

So, go out there and vote. I will be hoping and praying that we make the decision that will allow us to make our country a more safe, yet free, place.


Monday, October 27, 2008

Why Autistic Kids Have Meltdowns When You Drive a Different Way in the Car - One Aspie's Theory

Well, after reading that exceptionally long blog post title, you're probably wondering: Yes, AspieMama, why do kids with autism have meltdowns when you drive a different way in the car? I have never experienced this personally, but I've heard from some parents of children with Autism that it does happen with some kids.

I suppose that I can't speak for everyone, but here's a story and my theory. My husband likes to go places and do things out of the house often, even if it's just going to the mall to walk around. The problem is, he never really knows where he wants to go, just that it's somewhere! So, we agree on a tentative plan, and pile the family up in the car and start driving.

At this point, I'm already a little nervous because I like to have a plan on where we're going, what we'll be doing, how long it will take, etc. After all, I need to know what to wear, what shoes to put on (determined by how much walking will be involved), how many bottles to bring for the baby, etc. My husband just thinks I worry too much.

Well, as I said, we agree on a tentative plan on where we're going. So, a few days ago, my husband suddenly takes a different highway exit than the one for the place I thought we we're going. I immediately felt a panic come over me. My mind was racing, "Where are we going?" "I thought we were going to __________." "What's going on?" I did not have a meltdown, but these thoughts gave me an idea.

What if kids with Autism feel the same way? What if they thought they were going one place, and even if they were still going there, if you took a different route they might not realize that. What if they were scared like I was, but didn't have the verbal skills to tell you that? This may already be common knowledge to parents of autistic kids, but I just thought I'd share, and ask for your opinions.

I'm not sure what the solution is. Maybe having a picture schedule in the car of the places you're going? I'd love to hear your opinions about this as well.

Have a super week,


Thursday, October 23, 2008

What's the healthiest Halloween candy?

Since becoming a mom, I'm much more concerned about children's heath. I really want to have fun candy for the kids on Halloween, but I don't want to give them a bunch of junk with artificial ingredients and colors. I bought a Halloween pack of little plah-doh containers that I plan to give to younger kids, but I don't think that older kids will want that.

What are the healthiest candies that I can give out?

Thanks for your ideas!


Monday, October 20, 2008

Getting an Aspie Husband to Help Around the House

As some of you may know from reading my blog, I'm pretty convinced that my husband also has Asperger's, although he won't admit it. I'm proud to be an Aspie, so it's not like I'd be judging him, but I digress.

I don't know if this an Aspie thing or not, but he is lousy at helping me with anything around the house! Even traditional "manly" type stuff such as mowing the lawn. He has a strong sense of justice, and somehow this is justified in his mind. I think because I work part-time and he works full-time. Of course, I spend much of my time when I'm not working doing ALL of the household chores, taking care of our pets, and taking care of the baby. But somehow, in his mind, this doesn't count as work.

I've tried getting angry, I've tried being extra nice. I've tried taking video of me working to show how hard I work around the house. Nothing.

But, I finally found a trick that works, a little! He's very interested in secret agent and spy movies, so I made a little laminated sign that I post on the fridge. It says, "Your mission, should you choose to accept it..." It also has a picture of a bomb, and the phrase, "This message will self-destruct!" Under that I write (with a dry erase marker) one job that I would like him to do that day. At first, I made them really easy, like picking up one piece of trash off of the bathroom floor. Once he got used to the routine, I gradually started making them bigger jobs. They now usually take up to ten minutes. He does complain, but he acutally does it!

Just wanted to share in case this is something you could use. If you have any other tips, please share them here! I'd love for him to do a little more around the house. :O)

Thanks and have a lovely day!


Monday, October 13, 2008

Aspie Mama is Back

Hello, everyone! I have been so busy with going back to work and taking care of my little boy, that I've really neglected this blog. I'm hoping to change that. Look for more new posts this week.



Sunday, July 20, 2008

"Underneath We're All The Same"

He prayed, it wasn't my religion.
He ate, it wasn't what I ate.
He spoke, it wasn't my language.
He dressed, it wasn't what I wore.
He took my hand, it wasn't the color of mine.
But when he laughed, it was how I laughed,
and when he cried, it was how I cried.

- Amy Maddox, "Underneath we're all the same."

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Make a Difference Now or Regret it Later: A Reflection on George Carlin and my Baby's Future

As I was playing with my baby boy recently, I began to wonder what the world would be like when he grew up. I thought about all of the things that are going wrong now (global warming, war, environmental pollution, toxins and unhealthy things in the foods we eat, a lack of personal responsibility, etc.). I'm speaking course of life in the United States, I know that it is not this way for all people. I thought about all of the times that I haven't recycled, everytime I didn't help a person in need, every time I put myself above what's best for the greater good, and I resolved to do better. I think that we have an obligation to make the world a better place for our kids, and if you don't think so, just wait until you have children! So, I'd like to advise you to start doing the right things NOW, don't wait until you have kids and regret all that you haven't done to make our world a clean, peaceful, and wonderful place for you child.

I was listening to a radio tribute to George Carlin (who I'm honestly not very much of a fan of) yesterday, and I thought that he made some great points in one of his performances. He basically stated that he found it presumptuous that people would try to "Save the Planet." He said that the planet has been here much longer than we have, and has been through a lot of turbulance. He said that the planet is going to be fine. People are the ones who are [BLANK]-ed. I think he's absolutely right, and I hope we can change this before it's too late!

"Better, tho' difficult, the right way to go,
Than wrong, though easy, where the end is wo."
- The Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan

Friday, June 20, 2008

Who needs life skills training, autistcs or NTs?

I was driving today and saw a billboard whose message was basically this: "Don't leave your keys in your car. It makes it easy for people to steal it."

I couldn't believe that there needs to be a billboard to remind people of this!

Apparently, autistic people aren't the only ones who benefit from life skills training! :)

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Another Easy Baby Game

Here's another fun, easy baby game. Okay, it's not really a game, but my 3-month-old enjoys it!

We lay next to eachother on a bed in a well-lit room (I prefer to open a window and use natural light). I then pull a thin, light colored blanket over us and hold it up like a tent. My baby enjoys looking at the colors of the blanket, as well as kicking it, touching it, and pulling it.

Just another idea for those like me who have a hard time "playing" in the traditional way!

Saturday, May 31, 2008

52 Activities for You and Your Baby

I just wanted to let you all know about a good resource if you're a bit clueless like me about ways to play with your baby. "52 Activities for You and Your Baby" is a set of cards, each with an activity written by Lynn Gordon and illustrated by Karen Johnson. Some of them are really obvious activities that you could do, but there are also some really fun and creative ideas. It also contains words to fun rhymes and songs from when I was a child that I had forgotten the words to!

Here's the link to the product on

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Top 10 Signs You're An Aspie Parent

I have a lot of funny and crazy things happen sinced my son was born, and they inspired me to write down my "Top 10 Signs You're An Aspie Parent." Yes, they are all based on personal experience! Enjoy!

Top 10 Signs You're An Aspie Parent

10. You have so many pets, that you need a "crib tent" to keep them out of the crib!

9. You consider wiping your arms, legs, and neck with a baby wipe to be an acceptable substitute for a shower.

8. Instead of wanting your child to be football quarterback, you're aiming for chess, math, or science club president.

7. You finally get a night out to have dinner with a friend, and your topic of conversation is, "So, what's your favorite way to generate electricity?"

6. Your baby's just a few months old, and you're already planning what he'll wear to the next Renaissance Festival.

5. Your spouse can dress your child in a more coordinated outfit than you've ever worn.

4. Forgot to write number four because I was distracted by something cool on the NASA channel.

3. You've read a Harry Potter book out loud to your baby.

2. Your baby is wearing mismatched socks, because you've lost pretty much one of each pair.

And the number one sign you're an Aspie parent is...

You love your child unconditionally and value his or her unique differences (whatever they may be).

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day to all you moms out there, Aspie and otherwise. I know that my first mother's day with my son has sure made me appreciative of my parents! My mom is getting a great gift this year! :)

Take care, and call your mom, or send a card or e-mail telling her that you love her and that you appreciate her. Have a great day!

Friday, May 2, 2008

It's Happened Again - Baby Taken Away From Spectrum Mom!

I previously blogged about a baby that was taken away from his family in the UK. Well, it has happened again, and this time in the United States. This is an absolute outrage, and has me again scared for me and my son!

Read the article here. Keep in mind that it is an opinion piece.

The transcript of the court decision (viewable here) states the following, "Common sense tells us, and the circumstances of this case it would clearly not be in [the child's] best interest to be removed from her foster home [meaning she would be returned to her parents]. Why is that? Because Ms. [name of mother] is diagnosed with pervasive developmental disorder, not otherwise specified, PDD NOS."

While it does sound like this mother made some mistakes with regard to caring for her daughter (which we all do!), I am really concerned about the legal precident that this sets. What an outrage! I wish there was something I could do. If I find out someone to contact to send a complaint letter, I will let you know.

Please re-post this story to your blogs! This applies to parents of children with autism as well. You want your children to have the opportunity to be parents and have families!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Vaccine Update - What's Up with HebB?

We decided to give Tristan all of his shots, but on a more spread out schedule. The doctor was very supportive of this. Of course, he said that there was almost no danger in getting them on the recommended schedule, he did that with his own kids, etc, etc, etc. But he said that it was my decision. He didn't pressure me either way, which was nice.

I'm still not sure that I want him to have the Hepatitis B shot. Why does he need this if he's just a baby? Is it okay to wait until he's older and more at risk? Does anyone know?

Thank you and have a good weekend!

Monday, April 7, 2008

Anxious About Going Back to Work After Baby

I was really anxious (and grumpy!) about going back to work after having our baby. However, I eased a lot of my tension (and improved my mood) by making a written schedule of what I would be doing and at what times at work. I really liked seeing it all written out, and the relief was almost immediate. I was really surprised that this helped so much. Just wanted to pass this along, and pose a question. How has scheduling helped you? Or, has it helped you?

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Great Statement on Neurodiversity! - "From 'Cure' to 'Communication.'"

I recently read this statement from Ari Ne'eman, the President of The Autistic Self Advocacy Network. I thought it was a great explanation of how we should respect the individuality of autistic people, and still teach functional skills. This is what our research priorities should be; stop wasting money on a "cure!"

"I consider it a grave human rights concern that many autistic individuals continue to be unable to communicate because the assistive communication technology and educational methodology research that could help many more adults and children convey their needs is being ignored in favor of eugenically oriented genetic research aimed at finding a 'cure' for a natural and legitimate part of human genetic diversity. The autism spectrum is not a recent epidemic but a neurological condition that has always existed, but is only now being diagnosed at incidence rates that approach accuracy.

The autism spectrum often comes with significant disabilities that require substantial support. However, rather than trying to eliminate us, we can and should be taking steps to mitigate those disabilities while empowering the strengths that we possess and respecting our legitimate place in the spectrum of human diversity. We encourage this Committee to take the first steps towards shifting the main buzzword about autism from 'cure' to 'communication' and ultimately, to moving the dialogue about the autism spectrum to one of acceptance, inclusion and, above all, respect."

- Ari Ne'eman, President of The Autistic Self Advocacy Network,


Thursday, March 13, 2008

Custom Immunization Scheduler - Please Advise Me!

First of all, let me say that I do NOT believe that vaccines cause autism. However, having a newborn son, I have been looking at the recommended vaccine schedule. The website has a custom immunization scheduler, where you can enter your child's birthday and it will give you an outline of what vaccines your child should have when. I was looking at it, and there are a lot of shots given at one time! Autism aside, it seems like this is a lot for a baby to handle at once!

Here was what the website listed for my son:


Tristan's Recommended Immunization Schedule:

March 2008 (Birth to 2 months)
Hepatitis B

April 2008 (1 to 4 months)
Hepatitis B

May 2008 (2 months)
Polio (IPV)
Pneumococcal (PVC)

July 2008 (4 months)
Polio (IPV)
Pneumococcal (PVC)

September 2008 (6 months)
Pneumococcal (PVC)

September 2008 (6 to 18 months)
Hepatitis B
Polio (IPV)
March 2009 (12 to 15 months)
Pneumococcal (PVC)

March 2009 (12 to 23 months)
Hepatitis A

June 2009 (15 to 18 months)

March 2010 (2 to 6 years)
Hepatitis A

March 2012 (4 to 6 years)
Polio (IPV)

March 2019 (11 to 12 years)
TDaP (DTaP booster)
Meningococcal (MCV4)
HPV (girls only)

Note: Your child should receive a flu shot every fall after turning 6 months old.


I want my son to be vaccinated, since I believe that it is very important. However, are there any other options than having so many at one visit? Please let me know!

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Spectrum Parents: Do You Talk to Your Baby? Research Says It's Helpful

I was recently reading a blog on, and saw the following post: "Talk is the greatest teaching tool." The blog reported that a study examined the relationship between a child's language development and talk from parents. The study's results indicated that "a child’s intellectual success is directly related to the amount of talk the child hears from birth to age three."

I thought that this was interesting, and wondered how much other parents on the spectrum talk to their children. I find myself talking to my son a lot, but I honestly do feel a little silly doing so! I talk with him about the weather outside, how cute he is, what our pets are doing, etc. I also sing to him frequently ("Babe" by Styx!). I honestly don't know what else to do to interact with him at this age. Sometimes, I just hold him while playing some quiet classical music or a music box.

So, what do you think? Is talking to your child at this age so important? How often do you talk to your babies and toddlers?

P.S. Here is the link to the BabyCenter blog post:

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Welcome baby!

Tristan is here! He is a happy and healthy baby boy! More information and updates will be coming soon. Names have been changed to protect the innocent. :)

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

70% of Child of Safety Seats Not Properly Installed!

I heard this statistic on a radio commercial recently, and was very concerned. The website lets you locate an inspection location in your area. They will inspect the car seat to make sure that it is installed correctly. I believe that it is free. It is my understanding that they may also do this at the hospital when you take your baby home for the first time.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Links for Parents on the Spectrum

I have added a section of links (at the bottom of the page) related to parenting for autistic individuals. I was pleased to find a couple of websites! Please post a comment and let me know if you know of any others. I will add more as I find them.

Here are the links I added:

C.A.P. - Celebrating Autistic Parents - Autistic Parents and Parenting

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Baby Shower Thank-You Notes: How-To

I just had a baby shower given for me. I then realized that I have no idea how to write a proper baby shower thank-you note! I did some web searching and have found some resources that really helped me when writing my notes. Another tip that I came up with is to buy a pack of thank-you notes with a few more than the number you’ll need. It’s usually less expensive to buy in bulk, and it’s good to have a few extras in case you get a couple more gifts after the shower.

Here’s one question that I still have: do you send thank-you notes to immediate family? I don’t usually send thank-you notes to these people for birthday gifts, Christmas gifts, etc., so are they usually sent for baby shower gifts? Let me know what you think!

Here are the links to the resources:

How to Write Baby Shower Thank You Notes (

Baby Shower Thank You Notes (Squidoo):

Sample Baby Shower Thank You Notes (

Monday, February 4, 2008

An Autistic Parent Success Story from ASA

The Autism Society of America has a new website, and I saw this article written by a parent on the spectrum. It doesn't go into a lot of details about parenting, but it was nice to see such as positive story on the ASA website. Thank you ASA!

Here is an excerpt from the article:

Ruth's Story

“I was born with profound autism before it was known as a disorder. Nonverbal, I identified with Midnight, a Persian cat, until a neighbor insisted that I drink from a glass like a child, not lap milk from a saucer. Easily distracting myself with glittering lights and sparkling prisms, I spun myself through early childhood. A school principal, nurse, psychologist and the Girl Scouts helped me learn to talk, read and become socially appropriate, to save me from being sent to the institution for the mentally ill recommended by our doctor. I graduated college magna cum laude, earning a Phi Beta Kappa key. I became a clothing buyer, interior designer and talented dress designer, receiving awards for my clothing...I serve as the Midwest board director for ASA and am married. I love being a grandmother.”

Here is the link to the whole article:

Friday, February 1, 2008

Easy Recipies Needed

Since I will be taking some time off of work to stay home with our baby, I thought I'd try to cook more at home. However, I am a terrible cook! If anyone has suggestions for fast and easy cookbooks or recipies, I would love to know about them.

Keep in mind that I regularly overflow pans on the stove, explode food in the microwave, and burn myself when toasting bagels! That should give you an idea of my cooking abilities! I'll be sure to post about my cooking experiences on the blog.

P.S. Don't forget to visit the links at the bottom of this page!

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Vote for AspieMama! (No, I'm not running for president...yet...)

The blog Autism Bulletin is taking requests for favorite parent blogs. If you have a favorite blog written by a parent, especially if your favorite is AspieMama, please visit


P.S. I have no interest in running for president! Still not sure who to vote for either.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Celebrities Love It, Will You? ~ Childbirth Class DVD Review

I recently blogged about purchasing "Laugh and Learn About Childbirth," a childbirth class on DVD. First of all, let me say that it was great to be able to watch this class in the privacy of my own home, to talk candidly with my husband about my reactions to things that were said on the DVD, and to not have to listen to the material presented with a room full of strangers! This is a plus to the DVD.

The classes cover a variety of topics including signs of labor, a breathing technique, comfort measures, and medications used during labor (including pros and cons of different medication options).

In the first class, the instructor displays a picture of an unborn baby that, to me at least, looks more like a Rorschach ink blot test than a baby, but I eventually see the picture correctly. She defines some anatomy terms that you will probably hear about during doctor visits or "the big" hospital visit, and then delves into the topics outlined in the paragraphs above.

Overall, I found the DVD classes to be very informative and helpful. They are reasonably easy to watch and the instructor is often humorous. I did find that I needed to watch some of the classes again to understand and remember some of the information presented. However, this is one of the benefits to having it on DVD: that I could watch parts of it as often as I needed. The only drawback is that you are unable to ask questions to the instructor, but it was well worth it to loose this opportunity because of the other benefits mentioned.

The instructor has a website,, where the DVD can be purchased, but I got mine from I first found the DVD by searching, and I am glad that I saw it there first. The main page of the instructor's website primarily just has photos of celebrities who are said to be "fans" of the Laugh and Learn DVD series. There is not much actual information on the main page, which was a little off-putting to me. First of all, I don't really care what celebrities think of the DVD :) , and I have no way of verifying if that is actually true or not. If you click on the link at the bottom of the page that says, "click here if you want to enter the e-store," it will take you to more information about the DVDs and other products. Or, you can search for it on, and read reviews of the DVD there.

Overall, I found the DVD to be very professionally made, and it seemed to be very honest and accurate. I would certainly recommended it to others who are unable or uninterested in taking an "in-person" class.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Disturbing Case in the UK – Mom w/Asperger’s Has Baby Taken Away

Typically, I want this blog to be a positive place, but I recently heard about a case in the UK from this summer that deserves attention. I will admit that, after just reading the newspaper article, I don’t have all the facts of the case, but it certainly appears to be unfair and discriminatory. I have not been able to find an update on the case, but I certainly hope that this mother was able to get her child back!

Here is some of what the newspaper had to say:

*The 21-year-old mother’s baby was taken away immediately after birth,

*Two weeks before the baby was born, a county council added the unborn child to their ‘at risk’ register due to the fact that, because the mother has Asperger’s Syndrome, she would be at risk for developing post-natal depression and neglecting her baby.

*The baby was placed in foster care, even though the mother’s parents and family members had offered to care for the child during the “investigation.”

Here is the link if you would like to read the article:

Fortunately, I have not heard of other such extreme cases. I sincerely hope that there is more to this story than has been released, and this is not a simple case of discrimination.

Friday, January 11, 2008

New: AspieMama's Links!

I've added a links section at the bottom of the main blog page. It has two sections: one for Asperger's Syndrome links, and one for parenting links. If I ever find any websites for parents with Asperger's, I'll add those too!

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Childbirth Classes – No Socialization Required!

I’ve been putting off taking a childbirth class, maybe because I’m busy, maybe because I’m too nervous, I’m not sure. But, I think I’ve found the perfect solution! I just ordered a DVD from of a complete childbirth/Lamaze class. I’m really happy to be able to get this information without leaving my home to take the class with a bunch of strangers! It’s called “Laugh and Learn About Childbirth” with Sheri Bayles. It should arrive in a few days, and I’ll let you know how it works out! Please feel free to comment about any other similar DVDs that you’ve found helpful or how in-person childbirth classes worked out for you.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Cat's Cradle and the Inspiration for AspieMama

The inspiration for the AspieMama blog came while I was visiting family over the holidays. My sister was reading the novel “Cat’s Cradle” by Kurt Vonnegut. As she began to describe some of the characters and events to me, I recognized that one of the characters showed some signs of having Asperger’s Syndrome - although she accuses me of diagnosing almost any quirky person. :) I haven’t read the book yet, so please forgive me if some of my descriptions are a little bit inaccurate.

In the novel, one of the characters describes his experiences with his father, who worked on designing and constructing the atomic bomb. He states that his father became distracted from his work due to an obsessive interest in turtles. The people who want him to continue to work on the bomb end up stealing his turtles as a last resort so that he can continue the work. This character also describes how his father never played with him throughout his childhood until he once noticed his father playing with some string (he often played with “fidgety” items). His father made a cat’s cradle (a string game) and tried to show it to his son. However, the son was rather frightened by this, since his father had not played with him before, and he ran away from him.

I began to think about how I will play with my own child. I have always been a little bit nervous around other people’s children (mainly because I don’t want to do or say something to offend the parents), but I also feel somewhat clueless about how to “play” with a child. I knew that I would not want my child to end up in a similar situation as in “Cat’s Cradle,” and that I will, of course, play with my child. I wondered if other Aspie parents felt the same way, and if we could share what has worked for us about this, and other aspects of parenting. And so, AspieMama was begun! I hope this will become a place where we can share tips and advice, and support each other as parents in a unique situation.

Thanks for visiting, and Happy New Year!