Getting Ready for the Holidays in Colorado with the Santa Express Train

We've passed Halloween, we're coming up to Thanksgiving and preparing for Christmas. This year, one of our contributors is going to ride the Santa Express Train! The Santa Express Train, Colorado's favorite holiday train, runs through the Royal Gorge this Nov. 20 through Dec. 27, bringing more than 20,000 to the Royal Gorge Region over a six-week period. The Royal Gorge Route is offering more [...]

By | 2015-11-04T09:12:43+00:00 November 4th, 2015|Categories: Colorado, Events / Activities, Holidays|Tags: , |0 Comments

Planning "Sensory-Friendly" Family Time That Everyone Will Enjoy

The first thing you should do when planning quality, sensory-friendly family time is to make a list of the various types of entertainment that your family will enjoy doing together such as games, movies and family outings. Only include activities that everyone in the family will participate in. The easiest way to do this is to have each family member make their own list of [...]

When You Need Rainbows and Unicorns

It has been a hard couple of months. My daughter got disappointing results on the Sensory Integration and Praxis Test, despite having been in occupational therapy for four years. According to her most recent scope, she probably has some other food allergies lurking, causing reactions in her GI tract. We're having to go through medical review again so she can continue her immunoglobulin replacement therapy for [...]

Teal is the New Orange for Halloween

Who does not love an excuse to have fun with your child, go to a party or say, trick or treat as you visit your neighborhood. If you are an allergy parent events and days like this strike fear in your heart, here we go again, foods that for Jill and Joe are safe, but for your little one, can cause a life threatening reaction. [...]

By | 2014-10-28T10:00:24+00:00 October 28th, 2014|Categories: Family, Food, Holidays, Nutrition|Tags: , , , |0 Comments

The Calm in the Storm

Parenting a child with special needs is drama. Constant, never-ending drama. Occasionally, you’ll get what feels like a break. It’s not the calm after the storm. That indicates that the storm has ended. I guess it’s more like being in the eye of a hurricane, when everything is calm and still, but only briefly, before the storm rages all around you again. You can look [...]

Two Generation of Autism – Similarities and Differences

Someone once asked me to define the similarities and differences between the Hubs and our 7yo. On the surface, the differences are huge- due to the fact that one has 25+ years of trying to fit in socially and being (seriously. lack of better term) beaten into social submission. So I wrote a ginormous list, but only chose a few to share with you since [...]

The-More-Than-Valentine's-Day- Valentine

If you are like me, you woke up the day or two after Christmas deciding you needed to run to the store for something but when you enter the store, instead of being greeted by red and green and a major amount of glitter, you are greeted with RED, WHITE and PINK! Yes, in the mere 48 hours that it takes most of us to rejoin the [...]

An Interview with a Parent Navigating Two Generations of Autism

If you missed last month’s post in this series, you can click here, or join me for a short recap: • An Interview with a parent navigating Two Generations of Autism, Michelle Christiansen. So, what’s like living with two generations of Autism? Um… it’s not easy, that’s for sure. But it’s our life. Slowly, gradually, we’ve adjusted and it seems like we’re constantly adjusting, but [...]

Mom Guilt Moment

I experienced a huge “mom-guilt trip” the other day. Our 7yo (Sensory Processing Disorder and Autism Spectrum) (J) and 5yo(A) both had a field trip to a community theater production. At the same time. On the same day. Hubs couldn’t chaperone, but I could, so I did. And I went A’s Kindergarten class, instead of our son’s first grade class(even though he sometimes needs some [...]

The Traditions in a Home of Special Needs

Tradition…the repetition of an honored event or activity commonly shared with friends and loved ones that holds symbolic meaning to the participants. Every year around now I start gazing longingly at magazines and reading social media updates eager to learn more about the traditions my friends and their families share. Oh how I love those impish Elf on the Shelf stories, or the passed down [...]

By | 2013-12-30T09:00:26+00:00 December 30th, 2013|Categories: Family, Holidays|Tags: , |0 Comments

Two Generations of Autism – The Beginning

The Beginning of a new Writing Series on Special Happens.... I am Michelle. I started blogging with Special Happens as a form of therapy for myself-discovering how to cope and raise a child on the autism spectrum.  I believe in sharing stories, circumstances and how we handled them with each other-because we all have something to learn from each other. I also believe that no [...]

Employers and Special Needs Families

Every parent who works outside the home knows the challenges they face when their child wakes up sick on a scheduled work day.  A 2012 study by the University of Michigan’s C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital found that 50% of parents with children under the age of 6 reported difficulty making arrangements other than missing work when their child was ill.  In addition to the challenges [...]

By | 2013-10-16T09:00:01+00:00 October 16th, 2013|Categories: Family, Parenting|Tags: , , , |0 Comments

Domestic Violence – October is the Awareness Month

Spouse abuse, dating abuse, relationship abuse, it can be physical or mental or both, it happens in teens dating; married couples, and yes same sex couples.  No one in a relationship should allow themselves to be abused nor should anyone abuse another person.  Sadly the reality is, abuse happens in America every nine seconds.  In the time it took me to write that first sentence, [...]

Yoga For Children with Special Needs

  That graphic says it all, but in case you want more... I was fortunate to receive a complimentary copy of the DVD, Yoga for Children with Special Needs, presented by Rachel Hunter and Future Horizons, Inc.  While I was thrilled, I also had a voice inside telling me... what are you thinking!?!?!  J has moderate cerebral palsy and since his brain surgery has been [...]

A View in the Mirror : Turning 21

Years ago I came to terms with all the milestone events John would never know.   Going to kindergarten graduation. Grade school and after school church choir. Oh the joy of once a week seeing the church van pull up at school to whisk away you and your friends to church for a couple of parent free fun hours.  Little league. Middle school and basket ball, [...]

To Ride or Not To Ride: Amusement Parks and Special Needs

I first read the article about the amusement park, then watched the attached video of the child who melted down at the amusement park.  The video explains that the child could not understand or rather process the information that they would have to wait to ride.  The video further explained that due to policy changes at the park, the once easy on and off this [...]

Perspective on When Special Needs Fathers Remain

“When Special Needs Dads Remain…” I chose to write about this because I thought it would easy. Simple. J’s dad has stayed in the picture, so I was going to write a few serious sentences about how not all SN dads stay, and how that can be hard, ect… but then I actually started to think about J’s dad staying, and how much better things [...]

Turning Off the Blue Light for Alex Spourdalakis

In recent years the diagnosis of autism has skyrocketed.  Children range from mildly effected with some stimming, sensory over load and issues in the area of speech and communication.  This level earned the name pervasive developmental disorder, kind of a mild touch of autism if you will. There is a middle ground, and then there is what the rest of us know as autism, a [...]

Where Have All The "Good" Dads Gone – Marriage and Special Needs

If you’ve ever read Laura Numeroff’s If You Give a Moose a Muffin, you probably immediately related to the boy in the story. The one who just wanted to be nice and share a muffin with a forest animal, and ends up spending his time, energy, and patience managing consecutive needs the moose brings as a result. Marriage and parenting are like that. You get [...]

Misunderstood – When Child Protective Services is Called

My phone rang late one afternoon, the voice on the other end breathless and worried, “Cheryl I need you to come talk to the police, they are calling CPS on Kate again, some neighbor saw Mark outside without any pants on. I just pulled up in my driveway and saw the cops in here, can you come quickly? Thanks.”  The phone went dead before I [...]

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