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Kristen is a home­maker, home­schooler, and a home­keeper. Her experience includes nineteen years of practice, raising three kids, a husband, and a dog. Writing about her life helps her stay sane. She believes that sharing stories helps others by providing opportunities to share advice (and helpful hints) about homeschooling, and raising kids on the autism spectrum, while supporting marriages and families that are striving to thrive.

We're All a Little Mad Here



Well, it’s been a few weeks, here, that have been really crazy. I am so against the glorification of busy, yet, here I am. Here we are. My whole family is busy. I don’t mind activities, but having teenagers puts a whole new spin on things.

The oldest, my first autistic child, has been attempting college. He was enrolled in the developmental math modules necessary to pass, so he could register for an actual math class (for credit) needed for an associate’s degree. Tommy has dyscalculia. He can’t do math. It was a great strategy to take math first (he wanted to get it out of the way), and it was mostly online. We (he and I) neglected to think about transportation to and from Northern Virginia for pre and post tests. We also had a “technology hates us” week, which coincided with the disability counselor’s week of being out sick. Needless to say, college did not work out for us (for him) for this season. It was a tough blow, but it’s going to be fine. Tommy is already recovered... of course, he didn’t have to pay for it. It’s expensive to drop out of a college class! Anyway... moving on.




The middle girl also started college classes. She’s a senior this year. Being homeschooled, she has to actually register as a student in community college. She is an academic rock-star, though, and a licensed driver, so we (Danielle and I) have been doing great! Let me tell you, it’s great to have another available driver in the household. Also, it’s been rewarding to guide her in her burgeoning independence. She’s growing, I’m growing, the family is growing. That doesn’t mean we aren’t still crazy busy, and it certainly isn’t easy to “let go,” but is is rewarding.

That little one is just a whirlwind of nerves, feelings, emotions, and sensory fibers! She is a teen; she also is challenged by all the diagnoses! Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder is a bear, and when you start dealing with autism, sensory issues and dyslexia, you start feeling like the tazmanian devil. On steroids. We are totally ON when she is on, up, awake, moving, talking, moving, twirling, leaping, talking, talking, talking... You get the idea. Love, love, love... tired. Exhausted. Love.




The man of the house deployed for the hurricane. He did actual hero work for three weeks, and I don’t say hero lightly. He didn’t get to go on vacation with us, and he wasn’t home to help me make college decisions for Tommy, but he worked his tail off in Puerto Rico and other Caribbean islands, totally clearing roads, boarding up windows, clearing out wet carpets, checking on citizens abroad with the Fairfax Taskforce under FEMA. Don’t believe the media hype, here, that is bashing how uninvolved our country is. It’s simply not true. Plus, people are generally good. There is good news, and good things happening. It’s not all bad. It’s mostly good. We, collectively, should focus on the good.

So, all-in-all, hectic, busy lives are crazy, but good, but challenging, but... Hang in there! Right now I seem to be celebrating the days I make it into the shower and get to condition my hair... and I don’t have toddlers! Celebrate the small victories, and breathe through the challenges, pray, praise, meditate, and be intentional about the focus of the good.




Keep calm, focus, and parent on!!!

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Pouches' Community Corner

Cooking Autism

Cooking Autism, Inc. is driven to help children with neurological disorders (including autism) learn how to cook. Participants are encouraged to pick up critical communication skills, learn how to work as a team and be more independent. They can build skills in math, reading, and science, and learn about cooking-related topics such as health and nutrition.