Autism and Routine….

Routine is something hard to create and stick with in our lives….but it is a necessary thing.  I watch a You-Tube channel with “Andrea Mills”.  She talks about doing things routinely if they are important enough to you. Check out her website and channel for this topic and more.

https://www.andreamills.tv

With any type of special needs and we have two types in our family, I find as a homemaker that I need to create a way of organization for them; and not necessarily for me.  With epilepsy and Autism in our home, I find that this affects everything that we do!  For example, just leaving the house to go out for the day…we need to make a list on the back door of what we need to bring with us.  This way my husband who has Epilepsy, whether it be a good day or not, does not have to think about what to bring. Especially when it is an “off” day for him, he just looks at his list on the door.

(example list for the door)

  • travel bag
  • pills
  • water bottle
  • phone
  • phone charger

For our son has Autism.…so for his needs we have created labels in the refrigerator and also a routine of where to put things.  This way there is no frustration of where things go.  We also labeled where all of our coats go.  Again, this way it keeps things simple and organized!

We have created a “white board” system to help with all those daily questions that you find Autistic kids always asking.  They want to know what the next days meals will be 24 hours ahead of time. Our board includes 3 meals, 3 chores, 3 school events (we homeschool), and whatever the special event of the day is also.

This has proven to relieve many meltdowns, and crazy evenings in our home.  When he asks the questions that he always does by 5pm sharp, we can just refer him to the white board.

Special needs can be a struggle to the caregiver as well as the person who struggles with it.  Why not make life as routine as you can to avoid any chaos and confusion.  There will always be other issues to deal with, but when things are routine it helps out a great deal.

Lynn A. Wilson – Resume of a Mother

High Tea….Girl’s Nite Out!

Do you ever just need a night out….does life get crazy at times for you?  My days are filled with an 8 – 9 hour work day, followed by homeschooling, a barking dog, Autism, Epilepsy, and one crazy full schedule after my normal working hours.  Phew….that’s a lot of stuff to handle!

Many times people ask me how I do it all. If you follow me on Facebook you can see how nuts things can get. They will ask “so what do you do for you”?  Well, a long while ago I made it a point to have a night, a day or even an afternoon just for me.  It might be just running and doing a “Tuesday Morning” Haul to find some goodies, or a walk around the lake near our house or something similar.

I work with a great group of women and about every 6-8 weeks they will plan a girl’s night out.  This time we decided to try a new Tea Room for some “High Tea”.  What fun we had with dressing up, eating scones, sandwiches, specialty teas and more.  Have fun looking at the pics.

What do you do for your “Moms” break?  Do you ever think to take some time for you?

Let me leave you with a verse for today and some fun pictures.  I would love to hear from you ….leave a note in the comments below, follow me on Facebook and Instagram too.

Lynn A. Wilson – Resume of a Mother

Minimalism…Simple….Simplify-where does life have you?

What does this mean to you?  Minimalism comes to my mind. So many of the younger generation are going this way.  Many of them have watched their grandparents and parents collect things over the years so they now have taken up with the new trend of “less” is better.

I do find that the old saying…“less is more”, can be true!  But what is less?  I have watched some “extreme” shows, where they will have a beautiful “large” house and only have a mattress on the floor, 1 dish, 1 cup, 1 fork…you get the picture and they seem truly seem happy. This is not the life that I want.

I have a friend who LOVES to collect things…did I say loves it.  She collects any and everything that you could imagine.  She has now gone through her collection and resized it.  To most people…you would still say that she has a lot of “stuff” but to her …she has simplified her life in her own way with her collections and she is a happy girl.

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In my life…which is full of special needs and most days cioas….I need “my” type of simple.  Let me explain. My husband has Epilepsy and my youngest son as Autism…..for me this changes my life on a daily basis.  I have always enjoyed a full schedule of events, lots of involvement in family, work, church and life in general.  I like lots of hobbies, things, stuff, and decor in my home etc…I like to enjoy life as I see it….but then life doesn’t alway fit what I like!!!

Recently in my home….I have had to simplify things. Less stuff, less things and to be more practical and less nostalgic. This has been very hard for me but as I get into it …it does becoming easier. I need to create a very practical world for my two men. I need to label where things go in the refrigerator and label whose jacket goes where etc… And yet find a way to make my home still seem special and pretty to me and our guests we invite over.

Recently with my schedule….I have had to simplify that too. How do you take a girl who LOVES a full schedule and adapt it to “SIMPLE” one…so that I meet the needs of my family as well as myself.  I have and am still learning how to balance life ….I really don’t know how to explain that in words with exactly I am doing. I probably need to do a VLOG on a day in the life of me.

This might not be “minimalism” to some, but for me I need to carry a planner, snacks, change of cloths, meds, water, essential oils, band aids etc… in many different bags.  I have a travel bag, pocketbook, workbag, church bag etc…each one is filled with what I would need for that event and the extras for that “just in case I need it” moment.  This works for me….my car is full of bags stuffed with stuff.  But all this stuff to me equals an organized, simplified and simple way of living.  To me my life is now not full of stressful moments and I don’t have to think as much when life takes over and craziness begins. If you have anyone in your family with special needs you would understand. We never quite know what’s going to happen at a given moment and having these extras with us at all times and organized in designated bags for that particular event definitely helps.

Simple is defined by YOU and only you.  We should not jump on a trend just because!!! Yes, we should evaluate our lives and simplify them… but this does not mean throw everything out that you own, and live in a sleeping bag.

God has given and blessed our family many times over with things and not necessarily money…I need to use what I have, simplify what I buy and sometimes bless others with my overflow.

Remember to enjoy life and where life has you. I know that this is a unique way of looking a “simple life” but it is the way I do it.  How do you do it..leave a comment below.

Lynn A. Wilson – Resume of a Mother

“KISS” – starting over

I have heard this saying many times….”KISS”  and yet I need to be reminded of this simple quote on a daily basis. Have you heard of it?….”Keep it simple stupid”!

Well here I am starting over and getting my blog back up and running.  I think for a long while I thought it had to be this “perfect” something, and of course I am not perfect and neither is my life.  I envisioned it being… “WOW “…right from the start and WOW it is not….but WOW it can be down the road. I have a fear of failure and what will people think. What if it does not meet a certain standard ….what will your response be…and this list goes on.

For now…I need to “just start” and get it done, as my husband always tells me.  He always talks about how most people talk and talk and just never start. Life can go on for days, months and even years and we never in the end start what we wanted too.

So for today….”Resume of a Mother”… is back on track.  Blogs might be simple at times, fun and exciting at other times…but they have started again.

My goal is simply this….and it is also my personal mission statement, “to touch one life that will in turn touch another life”.  My blog was and is designed to encourage moms at every level… to bring joy, wisdom… and information that will make you a better mom.

“Resume of Mother”…was founded with me being a wife and a mother who is living a different life than most.  A Homeschool mom, special needs mom, adoptive mom, Autism, Epilepsy, full-time working mom, crafter, blogger, speaker, planner….and more….”I found my new normal and it is a moving target”. ..is my claim to fame.

Come join me again and follow me as I continue on this journey!

Lynn A. Wilson – Resume of a Mother

Planner = sanity = a better me…..

 

file_000I am a creative person in most everything that I do!!  I love to create new recipes, decorate my home and then redecorate it again and again. And who can forget….scrap-booking, tole painting, card making, any type of paper crafting, quilling, quilting and so many other wonderful outlets.

With being a wife of an Epileptic husband and a mom of an Autistic son…. my days do not always allow me the time or frame of mind to create in the above areas that I mentioned.  I also work full-time and home-school our youngest…while doing that, I am also involved in support groups, and many ministries in and outside of my home. So a planner is a practical tool for me…. but also a much-needed outlet for me.  But I have now learned to enjoy on a smaller scale the joy of be part of the planner community and to decorate my planner.  This is an outlet that can allow me to create on days when I need to do  mindless work, and a simple creative opportunity.

To some of my family and friends…they find this just plan nuts!!!  I have always used a planner since my first job and the start of my career.  Even back then 30 years+ ago…I would add a sticker, or doodle in it with a flower or two.  I loved the look when I would open my calendar and see the art work next to the event or schedule I needed to attend.

Move forward 30+ years….and the planner community has allowed me a whole new way to create.  Are you part of it?  Have you been bitten by the planner bug?  file_004Does the smell of stickers and does pen ink excite you?  Is going to the Dollar Tree and finding a new sickly note a highlight of your day…..well it is for me and many others. Just watching my Facebook groups with new hauls and new items from Etsy and the “DT”….is so much fun.

I will share in another blog post the breakdown of my planners and how I currently use them….but this was just a quick preview of what I like to use for my daily planner. My work schedule, my daily activities, my to-do list and other misc. dates to remember are in my Mini Happy Planner.  This is a new style of planner for me this year and I am loving it!!!!!!

Here are a few pics of some of my favorite items and a picture of a before and after for both a monthly and weekly spread before the pen.file_000

Reply below and tell me how you use your planner…..what items do you like to use in it?  What is your favorite pen to use? Oh yes send pics too!!!!!

 

Lynn A.C. Wilson – Resume of a Mother

A life filled with Routine or a Life of Adventure…..

img_0775I am a Modern Day Working Mama with a homespun twist and a dash of special needs and disabilities – a life of adventure with a constant new norm. 

 I just love to watch people and how they live their lives, I try to figure out why they do what they do and I learn about what I like and don’t like and how I want to live my life. It got to thinking today when I watched three people who are in my life…and how they are living their lives, and if I want to this that way. 

Do you ever people watch?  I have a friend who fullsizerender-2was
sharing witProcessed with MOLDIVh me that he and his wife where having a “discussion” about what to buy at the food store.  Now you might ask “what is the big deal”…but we have all been there. Discussing, fighting, arguing about which Ice Cream to buy, what brand of bread to get etc…. It sounds silly and it really is and yet we let this get to us.

I have another friend who has a very, very structured life.  She maps out her life in increments of time and activities.  She will work her 8 hours and 8 hours only.  We will plan for evening after work, to take on one task which can include baking. When she goes home….she will prep, bake, clean up and call it a night. Mind you I would be washing dishes, doing a load of wash, listening to a You-Tube channel and stirring the pot for dinner …all while baking.  Her life is so planned out and she never deviates from this.

I have another friend who as I would like to say…gets upset over a pen falling on the floor.  She is wound up so timg_1913ightly that everything in life seems to bother her.  She can bully anyone in her path for the smallest thing they have done wrong and yet if you try to talk to her about anything she will burst into tears with fits of anger.  Yikes!!!

I have two other women in my life who I admire for the way they adapt to life.  Both of them deal with a “special needs” situation in their life.  One seems to run with ease …I know she will tell you that is not the case, but to me she does.  The other friend seems to just live life and take on new adventures anytime they pop in her life.

Now getting back to a life of structure or a life full of adventure…..well, you probably guessed it, I will take the life of adventure.  Yes it can be filled with chaos at times, it can be filled with half done jobs, dishes in the sink, laundry not done and drive-through for dinner. But life is too short to worry about a pen dropping on the floor, it is too short to worry about which ice cream or bread to buy and it is too short not to taste life at its finest.

If you have read my story and the journey that I am on….my life is never normal and it is always a moving target to finding a new normal.  I am a “Modern Day Working Mama with a homespun twist and a dash of special needs and disabilities – a life of variety a constant new norm”!!!img_9065

I work full-time, I am involved in three distant ministries, I homeschool, I am a mom of a special needs son, I am a wife of an epileptic,  I am a mom of adult children, I am a women who strives to live out her dreams, I am a women who loves to blog, craft, scrapbook, be a planner nerd, try new things, travel, make homemade soups, decorate her home and much, much more.

Some people ask with delight how do I do it all….they watch me on Facebook and see how full my life is.  Some watch with judgement and question all that I do and wonder if my life should be more structured.  Some watch with wonder and they would love to live this way but are afraid to step out and try it.

Now my dishes do get washed, and my laundry gets done…..we don’t run around in dirty cloths. I do stay at home and with a task list in hand at times and “try and get more organized”. fullsizerenderYet on the other hand….life keeps calling, new places to see, new things to taste, new adventures to try with my family.  I have people to meet, lives to encourage, people to share great experiences with, people to mentor, people to learn from and a whole lot of life to LIVE.

What Journey are you on? What path have you chosen to live? This is your life and your choice to make…..what do you like “structure”, “wound up tight”, or “a little chaos”?  Tell me your story in the comment below…I would love to hear from you today.img_0921

Follow me on my blog for some fun, new and interesting topics.  Like my blog post  and share with a friend who might need to rethink how they are living their life.

 

Lynn A.C. Wilson – Resume of a Mother

Modern Day Working Mama with a homespun twist and a dash of special needs and disabilities – a life of adventure a constant new norm!

Sky Zone, Homeschool, Gym Time & Socialization….

It is aimg_7508lways great to have a family day out and it is even better when you can share it with friends!  We attend a homeschooled day out every other week at our semi-local Sky Zone.  If you have never heard of this it is a very large trampoline fun place as you can see in the pics.  Sky Zone does a great job of accommodating all ages and skill level and they keep the kids moving to each event they offer.

We meet up with some of our regular homeschooled friends we have made and also try to meet some new families each time we attend.  It is great to meet up with other homeschoolers from all different backgrounds, religions, and areas of NJ.  As much as we have our own faith and teach our children along that line….we also like them to know what others believe and even though we might not agree we can learn to be respectful of them as a person and a family.

How do you spend your gym days for Homeschooling?  Send a note below in the comments and tell us what you all do to have fun and still get some exercise in.

Lynn A.C. Wilson – Resume of a Mother

Homeschool with a Twist…UNO Math, Cereal Box Reading and Go Fish Spelling

school_supplies

You probably guessed it already that we tend to teach in an unconventional way. As I read on a homeschool blog called “The Encouraging Homeschool Mom” the other day by Jamerill Stewart and she called it “homeschool in a box”. Yes we had tried that route and it did not work for us with our youngest son. Now after years of homeschooling, research, chats with other moms and great blogs like the one I will link below…..we found some good tips and tricks that I hope will help you on your Homeschool journey.

I will let you know that we homeschooled our oldest (he is now 27 and excelling in his career, which we contribute a lot of his skills to things he learned in his homeschool days), with some of the more traditional lessons but always adding a bit of a homeschool twist. This worked for him…he needed more structure with how things would be done in a regular school setting. After a few years of this style of teaching….we did find that he needed some more creative outlets for learning his lessons. Now that we are schooling our youngest that has very distinct special needs, we see at least for him, that not only “one on one” teaching is needed… but very creative techniques and a constant change of styles is needed too.

Gavin is 14 and technically in 9th grade. He does fall a bit short on keeping up academically with the other kids and at his grade level. Putting all that aside….we as parents need to make sure he is taught the best he can be and with or without special needs. Each child is different whether they have trouble learning or not. We have been gifted with these children in our lives and they in turn have been gifted to have us as their teachers and mentors!!!! As a family we can minister to each other and we can share learning, teaching, gifts, skills, abilities, life lessons etc…..as we guide these young hearts to grow in the Lord and in their maturity. As parent we need to equip them in every way so when they leave the safe haven of home….they can be ready for what comes their way. Homeschooling does not just know what 1+1 is or how to spell…..yes that is a major part of learning but so is teaching them how to live life is too. Especially if you are a special needs parent then you would really get this point.

Here are just a few tips and tricks that I can share with you today that we have used and have worked well for us.

UNO Math

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We take UNO cards in a pile with only the numbers and wild cards. You then pick from the pile…the first 2 cards on top. Next you add these two cards (you can use addition, subtraction, division or even multiplication). If you draw a number and a wild card…your child can pick any number he/she wants to replace the wild card (which can make the math game even more fun). Now of course I said we do everything with a twist. Our son does not like using pen and paper. So we use a whiteboard, chalk board…..writing in sand in a box etc… Today, I had a bunch of leftover cd’s from a VBS project this year that we will not use again. So we took the cd’s and allowed him to write on them for each pair of numbers he picked. He could draw counting sticks, counting dots on the cd to help him do the math problem etc…to a help him add the UNO card 7 + 9 etc….IT WORKED GREAT!!!

Cereal Box Reading

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This is one of many ideas. Our son would not read a book. As a matter of fact when we pulled him from public school in 4th grade he would not read at all. I saw him trying to read a fortune cookie one day, at a Chinese restaurant and then it got me thinking….what else would he read? He loves Nerf guns and power rangers….ok then….what could we use to make reading fun and to incorporate the things he loves and likes. So, off we go with this idea now and when he buys a Nerf gun he reads the box, as he gets his favorite cereal he reads the box, you get the picture. He is now reading more and more (including books) and he is surprising us all the time with his reading skills. He also loves to use the “closed caption” on the TV and read the lines as they speak it out loud on the shows he watches. Who would have thought that watching TV can be a great reading lesson!!!

Go Fish Spelling

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Spelling is a something that was never fun!!! Ok what could be done…..well again schooling with a twist. I found an old set of playing cards, and put white labels on them with our spelling words. Then use them just like you would for a regular game of “Go Fish”. Do you have a “dog”….no go fish. Then when you get the matching pair….you lay those words down. Of course as the mom/teacher in me we needed to repeat the word, sound it out and spell it out loud before moving to the next word. We then found a set of cards with words and used it the same way.

These are only a few of my tips and tricks I use to teach our son. They are not new to some of you and to some of you just starting out and or needing a new idea… I trust this will increase your creative juices today to come up with some of your own fun ways of teaching some very basis things.

Write below in the comments and tell me what ideas you have. I would love to hear from you and what worked for you and also what did not. These tips….are great for special needs but all in all they are great for anyone who needs a little fun and creativity in their homeschooling.

Follow me on my blog for more fun tips and tricks, other ideas for special needs kids and just some all in all…..wonderful encouragement for moms.

Feel free to email me….I would love to hear from you all. Also follow me on Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram for other tips, tricks, ideas and pictures @resumeofamother

Lynn A.C. Wilson – Resume of a Mother