Our Current Obsession. Again.

Do your kids go on favorite toy fasts and binges?  I was thinking about culling our Thomas and Friends train collection a couple months ago because our box was so full and they didn’t get played with very much.  Then suddenly, they are the favorite toys once again!  Bryce used to carry those trains around with him everywhere. Continue reading

A Glimpse of "Normal"

Tonight after dinner we went to the park to take a walk and play on the playground.  Normally when we go to the park, Bryce will wander around a bit and climb on a few of the play structures but he keeps to himself.  He often is “silly thinking” while doing this (that’s the term Mrs. Linda came up with in regard to his verbal stimming).  The playground we went to tonight has a little see-saw which he loves to bounce on.  He and I were playing on it together when a little girl came up and stood there waiting for a turn.  Bryce was going to get off, but I told him to play with her and got off so she could ride with him.  I was pleasantly surprised to see him interact with her. Continue reading

Bryce Burkholder: Matchmaker

So my little brother finally brought his “special girl” home to meet the family this week.  Prior to actually meeting her in person we thought she was just an imaginary friend that he photo-shopped into his Facebook pictures.  😉 Continue reading

He’s going to hate me for this someday…

Every Wednesday Bryce has PE at school.  They’ve been doing “Jazzercise” lately, and Mrs. Linda keeps telling me how good he is at keeping up with the moves.  For someone so awkward with his body, it’s a little hard to believe.  So to prove it, she made a couple videos for me. I know that someday he’s going to hate me for posting this online, but it’s so cute-I can’t help it :)

Got one more :)


Spring Break Schedule

Because we have two weeks of Spring break and Bryce is now home all day, I instituted a schedule with several blocks of “No electronics allowed” throughout the day.  Otherwise, he would be plugged into something for two straight weeks.  He has no desire whatsoever to be involved in anything else.  You have to drag him outside and then you have to do something to engage him or he’ll just wander around or find somewhere to sit and wait.  His lack of imagination can be so frustrating, but it’s not his fault.  His brain just doesn’t work that way.  However, he is a master imitator, so if you show him what to do, he’ll usually go along with it. Continue reading

"I have a new rule…"

I had to write this down before I completely forgot about it!  Today when I picked Bryce up from school, Mrs. Linda told me that he announced something to her as they were walking out for the day. Continue reading


We used to have passes to Disneyland but when Bryce started going to school full day it just didn’t make sense for us to keep them.  Of course, the incredible rate hikes they’ve hit pass holders with the last two years didn’t help either.  But when Bryce was preschool and Kindergarten aged, we went regularly.  He started asking when we were going to go back to Disneyland about a year ago.  I told him it was probably going to be a few years before we could go again because it was just so expensive.  So he starting saying, “What year can we go to Disneyland?  2nd grade, or 3rd grade?”  We didn’t make any promises, but it helped to know that it was out there somewhere in the future and we would go again.   Continue reading

Oh, dear, I’m in Big Trouble!

Bryce had us all laughing tonight.  It’s Jared’s birthday tomorrow, so we had the family over tonight for a little party.  Baby Abe (cousin) was asleep in our bedroom.  I completely forgot about that fact when I told Bryce he could go play on the iPod.  A few minutes later I went down the hall and I heard Abe fussing.  I went to get Jamie, and as I did, Bryce came bolting out of the room saying, “Oh, dear, I’m in big trouble!” Continue reading

Bryce’s Valentine Compliments

I know, this post will seem like bragging on my son, and I guess it may just be that. :) I posted on my Pinterest blog about the great idea of doing Valentine’s Day compliments for a class.  Click here to read that post.  I was so excited to get Bryce’s when he came home because I couldn’t wait to see what other kids thought about my son.  It’s not like he comes home and tells me who is nice to him, or if someone has been mean.  He’s largely clueless when it comes to social nuances.  So this was a peek into his daily life at school.  

You are smart.  You are a very good problem solver.  You always smile; your smile is always bright.  You’re kind.  You are funny because you have a silly laugh.  You are kind to everyone; you are very helpful.  You are very kind because you never say bad things about people.  You are kind.  You are smart.  I like how you read.  You are fun.  You are smart; you are nice to Mrs. Linda.  I like playing with you.  You’re cool.  You can answer so many questions; you are very nice.  You are a very hard worker, you never give up.  You are an amazing kid, you are that because you are smart.  You are really smart; you are a good friend.  You are very nice.  I think you are a very good soccer player; I like playing soccer with you.  

I had to laugh at the “nice to Mrs. Linda” comment.  He’d better be! He has no idea how good he has it!  :) Jared just groaned when he read “you are a very good soccer player” since he hates soccer.  I don’t know if any other moms read their kids valentines, but I sure did!  I’m glad to hear my child is kind to others and smart to boot! 

Lessons from The Princess Bride

This was so good, I just had to reblog it.  Also, I didn’t want to lose it somewhere :)

From Snagglebox.com Autism Resources

17 Things The Princess Bride Taught Me About Autism Parenting

Never interrupt me while I’m climbing the Cliffs of Insanity

1.  Affection doesn’t have to mean saying I love you

Reading a story to someone who’s sick in bed, saying “as you wish” or playing rhyming games that annoy your boss… there are many more ways to show love than just those three little words.

2.  Optimism can get you through the fire swamp

Just because you haven’t tackled a problem before doesn’t mean there’s no solution, even for POUS’s (Problems of Unusual Size).

3.  Having a target will help you stay focused

You don’t have the energy or resources to tackle every challenge that’s in front of you. Find your six-fingered man – prioritize your goals, work out which of those you can tackle and then pursue them with everything you’ve got.

4.  You rush a miracle man, you get rotten miracles

Be patient. Change and growth takes time, and there are no corners to be cut here. Every kid is working to their own schedule and developing at their own rate.

5.  Don’t believe the hype

There are people who make a lot of money from making you believe in the Dread Pirate Roberts. Snake oil salesmen bank on the fact that you will be too distracted by fear to focus on things like facts and common sense.

6.  Never start a land war in Asia

Well that’s just good advice.

7.  Success means using the right moves for the terrain

There is no definitive intervention for autism. The choices that other people make may not be the right ones for your family, and vice versa… and that’s okay. Don’t ever let anyone make you feel otherwise.

8.  There’s not a lot of money in revenge

Don’t spend your life feeling bitter, blaming yourself, hating autism or resenting parents of typically developing kids. It’s a fruitless and costly waste of energy that can be directed into more productive things.

9.  Inconceivable doesn’t mean impossible

Your kids will achieve things beyond what you ever expected or imagined. Believe this and they’ll believe it too.

10.  You may already have a wheelbarrow

It’s easy to focus on liabilities, but don’t forget to take stock of your assets too. What skills do your kids already have that they can use to help navigate their challenges?

11.  Who says life is fair? Where is that written?

Let go of the expectation that you have more than your fair share of crap to deal with. There are no shares. You don’t have a big pile of crap, you have life. Go live it.

12.  Sometimes words don’t mean what you think they mean

If your kids are having trouble communicating, look beyond the words that they’re using. Thinking about the way the word is being said or the broader context can help you to recognize echolalia or find clues to the word’s intended meaning.

13.  Wiggling a finger is worth celebrating

Take time to enjoy even the smallest of accomplishments, for they were hard earned and are signs of bigger things to come.

14.  You always come back for the ones you love

Let your kids know that no matter how hard things get or how confusing life may be, you’re someone they can depend on to help them find the answers. After all, true love doesn’t happen every day.

15.  When there’s no time to explain, use a summary

Practice summing up their main challenges and needs so you can recite them quickly when you need to explain or get help in a hurry. “My son is autistic and finds loud noises frightening, is there somewhere quiet we can wait?”

16.  Mostly dead is slightly alive

Even when you’re too tired to breathe and the odds stacked against you seem enormous, you will survive to fight another day.

17.  It’s one hell of a story

Sure there’ll be laughs, adventure, pain and tears… but at the heart of it all, it’s about love.

Have fun storming the castle!