Saturday, January 31, 2015

A Rough Restaurant Outing w/ the KIng :(

Saturday 3:21pm -- We just got home from a pizzeria restaurant with Kyle. This is the place that 3 weeks ago his majesty ate pizza for the first time in 4 years. That time he shocked us all and had a grand ol' time. 

So because we want to keep up his love for pizza and because it seemed like he'll only eat pizza from this one establishment wifey had it in her head that we should make a visit to that particular pizzeria restaurant a semi-regular Saturday afternoon tradition. 

So we went back today. 

And did we capture lighting in a bottle again today?

Nope... today's restaurant experience was a total f&$king disaster. 

He wouldn't eat anything except a bowl of pitted black olives. 

Fine, he didn't want pizza. Disappointing yes. 

But instead of watching his iPad or reading one of the 5 books we brought in he instead proceeded to attempt to beat us up for the rest of the meal. 

And the wife and I just sat there, me next to him, wifey across the table from him deflecting his slaps/blows while we attempted to eat our pizza and pretending as best we could that all was normal. 

God knows what this looked like to the rest of the customers in this crowded restaurant. I half expected somebody to take pity on us and pay for our meal. LOL

But wifey and I handled better than we used to. We both just sat there and ate our salad and pizza. 

Cuz the wife and I love this place. And we really were jonesing for some pizza.   Sometimes our kids with autism just need to learn to suck it up and deal, ya know? 

I mean the morning was all about him. We went to his swim and music classes, we watched his shows in the car.

And then we forced him to sit in a restaurant for 35 minutes so that we could enjoy our lunch. What awful parents we are!  LOL. 

So we deflected his blows and attempted to enjoy our meal. 

But all in all it was pretty rough. At one point I moved my chair so that we both were sitting across from him since it was harder for him to reach us. 

Gosh what that must've looked like. People in the restaurant were probably looking for the ABC 20/20 "What Would You Do?" cameras. LOL 

But wifey and I must have horrible short term memories because I guarantee that we'll attempt to go back there again in about a month of so. 

I take that back. It's not because we have horrible short term memories. 

It's because we're stubborn and we are not gonna let this kid completely rule our lives.  

Again he's gotta suck it up once in a while, no?


Wednesday, January 14, 2015

VIDEO: Kyle & I Reading His New Old Favorite Book... :)

Wed 7:58pm Quick Video of Kyle & I are reading an old favorite which he just rediscovered today, "The Berenstain's B Book"

I just bought 2 extra used copies on amazon as backup since he inevitably rips & destroys his favorites...




  If you're gonna shop Amazon anyway, can I ask that you enter Amazon by using the search box above?  This way I can make a little money.  This blogging thing has been awesome & life changing for me... but I must admit that it's taking up a lot more time than I ever thought... so if I can make a few bucks it'll make it easier for me to justify....Love you all! Thanks!!

Saturday, January 10, 2015

$8K in Autism Costs=Why I'm Trying To Make Some $ w/ My Blog

I was going to write an end of the year post tallying up all the money that we spend on Kyle for all his special needs activities, medical costs, etc.  I thought some of you would find this interesting.

And then this past Wednesday at 11:55pm I posted an advertisement or a "sponsored post" on my Autism Daddy Facebook page.  It was for a new zero calorie sweetener.  And some of you assumed my account had been hacked and others who realized I wasn't hacked were disappointed that I was posting ads on my FB page like that.

And so then I was going to write a quick post to explain why I'm trying to make a little $ off of my blog/FB page...

And then I realized that the posts could be combined!  The reason I need to monetize the blog/FB Page a little IS BECAUSE of the costs of raising a child with special needs. 

Now I'm not writing this to defend myself or to justify why I'm trying to make a little money. I just wanted to talk it thru a little...


So here goes...

Last year I started using this app called to track all of our expenses in one place. (No I'm not getting paid for mentioning :)

And now that 2014 is in the books I decided to take a look and see where all are our money went. 

And no surprise, having a special needs child is a pretty HUGE part of our yearly expenses. 

So I thought it would be fun (for me :) to list for y'all exactly what we spent on the king. 

So here's the breakdown.  And before I get to this let me say that I know how lucky we are to be able to afford this all. That is not lost on me. Ok here goes...


30 OT SWIM LESSONS X $85 EACH $2,550












--REPLACEMENT IPAD (a now annual expense)










** =  $0.50 TOLL X 4RT X 160 SCHOOL DAYS

I could spend the rest of this post going into the details of why we do each of these activities, and "where's his prescription med expenses?", and "why do you drive your kid to school?", but I want to stay on point.  So to quickly answer, I wrote why we don't put our kid on the school bus HERE.  And we have a Medicaid waiver which pays for all Kyle's prescription co-pays and saves us THOUSANDS in additional doctor, medical, respite costs...

But back on point... So we spent $8722 in what you could call Special Needs related expenses...

Now I know some of you may say "if you had a typical kid you'd probably be spending the same amount of money or maybe even more on Little League and soccer practice and violin lessons."

And that's all true. 

In fact if we had a typical kid we'd probably have two or three kids and we might be spending a lot more on all those things. 

But the catch is if we had typical kids my wife would probably be working. 

Maybe full-time, maybe part time...who knows?  But I'm sure she'd be working and bringing in enough money to cover a lot of those kid(s) expenses.

But, I've written in a previous blog post (READ) how I think it's virtually impossible for her to work in our current situation.  Back then I wrote
When it comes to my wife getting a job... I honestly don't see what job that she could get for the 6 hours a day that Kyle is in school that would bring in enough money after taxes to make it worth her while...and what kind of job that she could get that would be so flexible with the weekly drama that is life with Kyle....not a week goes by where she isn't called about something... picking him up early because of an illness... going in early for a meeting.... dropping him off late after an early morning doctor appointment...  It never ends...
But if I'm being honest,  right now, we could use some extra income coming in... we could use the money from a part time job to help offset some of that  $8k in expenses every year.

So why shouldn't I consider the blogging a part-time job for me and treat it as such?

Between writing early in the morning, and writing late at night, and writing during bathroom breaks, :) there's some weeks where I might spend 10 to 15 hours writing...just like a part time job.

So why shouldn't I take advantage of this platform and try to make a little money?

And I know some of you may be thinking, "but why an ad for a sweetener?  why not something autism related"

I was paid $150 to post that ad about the sweetener.  $150!  For one post!  And it took me 5 minutes to write.

That $150 will almost pay for one week of all of Kyle's activities listed above (OT, swim, music, etc)

I would gladly do something autism related if it was as easy as that...but many of the autism related products I've received $ offers about want me to read & review an autism book or review an autism  product for a certain amount of money, but that would take up too much extra time.  I'm trying to avoid adding more hours on this Autism Daddy thing than the 10-15 that I spend writing.  

Already on some weeks the 10-15 hours I spend writing get in the way of my life.

 My son, my marriage, my real job all shouldn't take a back seat to me writing about autism. 

But sometimes they do...

And if I really wanted to monetize this blog properly and make $$ solely on things related to autism / epilepsy I'd need to put a lot more work in and spend more hours per week writing or hustling to find $$ opportunities.  

Or if I wanted to somehow fit it into the 10-15 hours  I'd have to change my writing style and write less personal stuff and spend more time reviewing autism books and autism products and having giveaways, etc. 

And I don't want to do that. I want to write my blog, my way about what I want to write about.

I want to continue to write about the personal stuff going on in our lives.  I want to write about the mundane stuff.  I love it when people tell me reading my blog and seeing our lives makes them feel less alone, makes them happy to see that there's somebody else out there just like them.

So the way I try to make money on the blog are, in my opinion, the easiest for me, the least time consuming for me, and I hope the least obtrusive to you.

My make money on this blog 3 ways...

1) When you click on one of the google adsense ads towards the top of the blog I earn a few pennies per click.  I don't control what ads show up there, and I'm not supporting any of those products, but if you see something that interests you click on the ad and I'll earn a few pennies.  

2) I am an Amazon Associate.  So whenever you shop Amazon if you click on any of the Amazon ads or search boxes you see on my page or if you enter the Amazon store by using this link I 'll get a little kickback when you shop... basically a small percentage of each item purchased, a small commission for referring you.

(By the way you guys helped us IMMENSELY over the holidays by using the link.  Thank you SO MUCH!)

3) And then, every once in a while, an easy money opportunity like posting one post on Facebook for a sweetener for $150 will fall in my lap.  And I HAVE to take those!  Wouldn't you?  But I will try to keep them to a minimum and make them as un-obtrusive as possible.

So that's about it.  So when you see me pushing my Amazon link every week or so, or if you see a few extra google-adsense ads pop up on my blog from time to time, or if you see a bizzare post on FB from me in the middle of the night about a new sweetener, think about the $8722 and you'll know the deal.

Basically you're helping me earn a few extra bucks to go towards Kyle's special needs activities,  and you're helping wifey by her not having to go back to work which would be virtually impossible anyway.

So, there you go. That's about all I've got to say. 

Now you know why you see ads and sponsored posts on here from time to time. 

I'll try to make them as unobtrusive as possible. 

Over & out!




If you're gonna shop Amazon anyway, can I ask that you enter Amazon by using the search box above? This way I can make a little money. This blogging thing has been awesome & life changing for me... but I must admit that it's taking up a lot more time than I ever thought... so if I can make a few bucks it'll make it easier for me to justify....Love you all! Thanks!!

Monday, January 5, 2015

Kyle's Last Few Weeks - 3 Huge Steps Forward & 2 Weird Steps Back

Mon 8:17pm -- I'm in bed with the king as he drifts off to sleep watching the sesame DVD  "Sleepytime songs & stories" for the 2097th time. 


And I'm thinking about the last few days of the holiday break and his first day of school today. 

And it can be summed up with that old saying "two steps forward and one step back"

That's pretty the story of a lot of kids with autism. 

Although with Kyle and his brand of autism (and epilepsy) it'a usually more like 

2 step forward, 5 steps back. It's been that way throughout his life. 

But the last few days of the break and today's reports from school show that this months version (so far) is 

3 Huge Steps forward and   2 steps back (one huge & one weird)

Here's the 3 steps forward:

1) No seizures in school today or for the last week of the break.  While at least a few small ones per day in the weeks before that. 

2) No naps at school today or for the last week of the break...while in the weeks before that Kyle had a cold and was very lethargic and was napping the days away... 

Was he so tired due to the cold or seizures?  Or a combination of both?  Who the F knows?  But in the days leading up to Christmas Eve he was sleeping literally 18+ hours a day. It was kinda weird.  

3) His appetite is back with a vengeance!  He's absolutely ravenous!  I got home from work today and wifey said happily "he's eating the pasta I made for me & you... I gotta make more!"

In the weeks before his appetite was quite bad and he lost a few pounds. And in the week before Xmas when he was sick & napping so much I'd bet he barely got 500 calories down. But he is making up for lost time boy!

Here's the 2 steps backwards:

1) He's messing with his teeth a lot and picking at his front teeth a lot and has begun sucking and biting on his shirts. 

This has been going on for a week now.  And he's ruining his shirts.  He's biting thru them!  In fact  one of the really nice shirts he got for Christmas now has 2-3 teeth size holes over his left breast. 

Don't know where this new "habit" came from... But we're taking him to the dentist on Wednesday to try to determine if it's a teeth issue or just a stim. The dentist visit will probably be a disaster (like it usually is :) and if the doc can even get a peek inside his mouth we'll be lucky.  

So, hopefully it's just a stim.  And a short term one at that...

2) Out of nowhere and for no good reason he's having quite a few pee-pee accidents. He had 2 at school today. And had one a day for the last 3-4 days of the break. 


He hasn't had a bad stretch like this in about 3 years or so. Why now?  What does it mean?  

We'll probably never know. 

But I'm praying that we don't have to go back to pull-ups (man sized pull-ups :) and that we don't have to do have another weekend of intense potty training in our near future. 

That's about it. 

That's this months update so far...

3 pretty huge steps forward and one huge step back (the pee-pee regression) and one strange new stim to add in to his playlist. 

Yes it would be nice if maybe once we could have 3 steps forward and NO steps back 

But I'm an autism parent and after 11 years I know that's not possible. 

So all in all I gotta's so good to see my wide awake, seizure free, hungry boy. If that means he's got to eat his shirts and pee his pants I'll sign up that every day of the week!


Sunday, January 4, 2015

Kyle Eating Junk Food: Then a Trip to the Supermarket. VIDEO & PICS

Here's today's 1 minute video blog post.  So the king has his appetite back... and on this Sunday afternoon he found pretty much the only 2 "junk foods" that we had in the house.

Sour Cream & Onion potato chips & Doritos.

There was only a 1/4 bag of chips and a 1/4 bag of Doritos left and he polished those off lickety split.

So then after this we went on a quick trip to the supermarket where we checked out the lobsters 

and got more chips and Doritos (they were both on sale!!)


And he wanted me to open a bag... So he ate another 1/2 bag of Doritos as we walked around the store...

Guess who ate the other 1/2 bag of Doritos in the store?  :) Me, of course. I'm still a teenage boy sometimes and I lose my sh-t when I get around that orange stuff. 

Anyway, after leaving a trail of orange crumbs around the store we both came home and cleaned our orange fingertips.


No, we don't let him eat like this too often...

But when you've got a kid like my Kyle who's got a history of losing appetite & losing weight (he once lost 10% of his body weight in a few weeks) you give him what he craves.

We "ride the hot hand" for as long as it lasts. 

Anyway, in addition to the junk he also ate some good stuff...tons of strawberries, blueberries, bacon, pancakes, and chocolate milk throughout the day.

Boy I can't wait to see his poops tomorrow.

Oh wait, he's got school tomorrow, so maybe the school will have the honor of witnessing that historic poop.



Saturday, January 3, 2015

Audio of Kyle "Talking" After Swim Today :-)

I took the king to open swim at the Y this afternoon.  He loves the pool but between his cold and the holidays he probably hasn't been swimming in about 3 weeks.

So I took him and went in the pool with him.  We were swimming for about 75 minutes.  He had a great time and was happily loud & stimmy throughout.

This is some audio I recorded of my very "talkative" nonverbal autistic son in the locker room at our local Y after 75 minutes in the pool. 




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