Monthly Archives: July 2013

Blog makeover

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I’ve been messing around with my blog a bit lately trying to make it feel a bit more ” me”
well, actually lots of lovely people on twitter have been kind enough to help me out making it pretty , organising it better and making badges , and then me trying to do stuff and messing up their hard work

Anyway my blog is more or less just how I want it now ( THANKYOU to everyone who has helped)

I have ( another) new badge

mumblings on the Verge

And I’ve made a ” blogs I love ” page , because there are some blogs that I really really enjoy and I think everybody should know about them.

I’ve added some of my favourites already.

If you think I’ve missed you out give me a poke !

Now I really must start getting my head around how to do stuff on my blog …. Because I can’t keep asking twitter for help …. You have your own blogs to write …… They are my bedtime reading material after all.

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Being aware …

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Around 700,000 people in the UK may have autism, or more than 1 in 100 in the population.

That’s ALOT of people.
And for each person with autism there is a family also affected !

ALOT of people.

Yet there is nowhere near enough understanding or acceptance of Autism.

More understanding and acceptance would make life so much easier for so many.

I saw this picture on twitter.
It’s heartbreaking , it’s also true.

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People with Autism deserve the same rights and opportunities as everybody else.

The education system is hugely lacking in understanding and acceptance.

The national autistic society does great work for autism they can be found here … http://www.autism.org.uk but I hadn’t heard of them until quite recently.

Autism is of course a very very broad subject but with so many people affected by it there really does need to be more understanding.

I’ll be honest until quite recently I had never encountered autism , my ” understanding ” of it came from what I had ” learned ” from watching the movie rain man

Since autism became part of my life I have realised that I really knew nothing about it.
I certainly didn’t have any understanding of it.
And I’ve learned that most of the people around me also don’t have any real understanding of it .

I asked on twitter if people could tweet me ( without googling first ) what they understood about autism.
Not so I could belittle them for their lack of knowledge but just to see generally how much people do know about it.

I had ALOT of responses.
Most of those responses where ” not enough “

very little

” I think it’s a learning disability ”
it’s not ! I think that only approximately half of all people with autism have a learning disability

I think most people think of rainman when they think of autism

Someone who had cared for 2 children with autism / aspergers said they actually had very little understanding.

I noticed that it was mostly parents or relatives of people with autism that really knew anything about it.

It’s not the fault of these people that they don’t know much about it …. The fact is there really isn’t much information out there.
I don’t think I’ve ever seen a TV commercial about autism.
I can’t think of any posters I’ve seen around for autism awareness ,
Even when the subject of my child possibly having autism came up I wasn’t directed to any information on the subject by any of the many professionals I saw.
My sons school had almost no knowledge or understanding atall. I’m sure my son isn’t the first autistic child to attend the school.

where is the information ?

I’ve had 7 children , I can’t remember ever being given any kind of information about what to look for as signs of autism when any of them was young. Not even a leaflet.

where is the information ?

Autism is actually a very interesting subject to learn about.

And the fact is that the information isn’t really out there. Unless you look for it.

As I mentioned before the national autistic society is a great resource for information and support.
http://www.autism.org.uk

There are lots of great books on the subject , so far I’ve read raising Martians and freaks geeks and aspergers !
Next I want to read the reason I jump

People who are passionate about Autism really need to help to get the information or information resources out there.
By talking about Autism , writing about it , blogging , tweeting .
Raising money for autism charities.

Talk about the good books , the useful websites , the great blogs.

And if you haven’t encountered autism yet why not have a little read up on the subject.
One day the knowledge you gain could help you to make a difference in somebody’s life.

people with autism don’t want a cure , they just want to be accepted and understood

also while I’m on the subject , it’s not just autism. Mental health illnesses affect so many people , in so many ways and yet mental health continues to have so little understanding.
Understanding and acceptance in society makes a huge difference. We all need to be better informed.
I , for example had never ( as far as I was aware )known anybody with an eating disorder , but through twitter I have become friends with a number of people affected by eating disorders , I became interested , I wanted to know more , to be able to better understand so I started reading about the subject

I just feel very passionately that as a society we really need to be more aware and more accepting.

We walked for autism : the national autistic society

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When me and Sue decided to do a sponsored walk in our pyjamas to raise money for the national autistic society I wasn’t sure that we would raise any money atall. I set our target on virgin money giving as £100.
But people really came through , especially the good people of twitter and so far we have raised £221 so far which I’m very proud of.
Every little bit of money raised makes a difference.
We set off in our pyjamas at noon today … Funnily enough we had bought the same pyjama tops.

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We decided to walk to through and around Wimbledon common as its a lovely walk.

We walked , we talked , it was lovely , Sue lives in Yorkshire so we only see each other a couple of times a year when she comes to London to stay with her family , so it was really nice to have a kid free afternoon together just walking and talking ( and raising money at the same time )

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We stopped at the windmill for a cup of tea and a cake

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We even braved the ” facilities ” which if you’ve ever been to the windmill you will know is not a pleasant thing

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Sues mum met us at the windmill with sues boys , to give us a little halfway support.

Then we headed back.

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We walked for 3 hours.
It was a lovely way to spend an afternoon and to raise money for such a good cause at the same time.

We are going to plan the same thing for next year but we would like to get more people involved , joining in.

I’m proud of us both and I’m very grateful to everyone that had sponsored us.
It’s not too late to sponsor us , this is our link
http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fundraiser-web/fundraiser/showFundraiserProfilePage.action?userUrl=8TOZERS

this afternoon I walked for autism !

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How not to have fun at the cinema

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I’m feeling at a bit of a loose end.
I’m missing the kids .
O is too.

We needed to do something. To get out.
I know , thought I, lets go and watch monsters university.
Now I know O doesn’t cope brilliantly with the cinema.
There’s a bus ride to cope with.
A walk through the shopping centre to get to the cinema and then the actual cinema.
But we wanted to see this movie.
So I decided it was worth doing.
Two of the teens wanted to come.
That was fine… A family afternoon out , together , chilling out watching a movie …
oh how wrong was I

Taking two children with disabilities out together to a busy place is in fact not fun.
O did , as I expected find the bus ride and the shopping centre stressful but just getting both of them out of the door was already stressful enough. Then once out of the door
O was getting noisy with his tics and the teen , well he was convinced all the way there that we hadn’t shut the front door.
He shut it.
And he checked .
And checked again .
But he was sure it wasn’t shut.
any hope of relaxing was now dwindling

yes your wallet is in my bag
Yes I’m sure.
Yes look, it’s here , I’ll button my bag up
Yes your wallet is still there
Yes my purse is there
Yes my card is in my purse
Yes your wallet is there , look
You want to check again?
Look it’s here

yes , the pre booked ticket machine will work
Yes I’m sure
Yes it will work
If it doesn’t I have our booking reference
But yes it will work
Yes your wallet is here
Yes, and my purse
Look

Choosing the popcorn size was a nightmare

We get in to the screen and at this point you would think it was a given that the 8 year old with ASD gets to sit next to mum.
But no, a ten minute argument involving lots of seat changes has to happen first.
Followed by the ” death stare” because O is sitting next to me.

The movie starts , there are two kids behind us with their dad.
They know all the words to the movie and they say all of the words to the movie all the way through
As well as look dad , what’s that dad , that’s a pig dad , that’s mike dad , that’s sully dad , look at that dad.
Oh , and they kick our seats the whole time
Oh, and the one behind me is leaning over my seat , and keeps catching my hair , whilst repeating every word from the movie.

why would you let your kids do that. Why not teach them to be quiet in the cinema
To not kick the backs of seats why not take them to the £1 movies if they aren’t quiet in the cinema , because yes I do mind if I’ve paid £23 to watch a movie and its been spoilt by somebody’s kids

O was furious I’m sure I could actually see steam coming from his ears.
He was seething mad.
And becoming more and more agitated
He started turning around telling them to be quiet
I was sure that he was on the verge of turning around and ninja kicking the pair of them.
I rubbed his legs
I patted him
I hugged him
I tried to calm him
He was fuming , but he managed to stay quiet and not spoil the movie for anyone ( because my kids don’t do that )
He wanted to go home
He kept whispering can we go now
Can we go now
Can we go now

I must point out that the movie was fabulous and awesome and funny
But I was glad when it was over

We walked through the shopping centre and to the bus ride with a very agitated O saying
are you saying I’m fat
Are you saying I’m fat
Are you saying I’m fat
Are you saying I’m fat

On repeat

And we checked the wallet
And my purse
And the wallet
And my purse
And the wallet , just to be sure.

And I joked ” imagine if we hadn’t shut the front door ” which was not my best move

And we came home
And I decided it will probably be a while until we go to the cinema again.

Toast and cereal no more …

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O was always a good eater.
He has loved vegetables since he was a baby.
And fruit,
He’s just never been fussy

I’ve always been able to give him a big variety of food

He’s always been a healthy weight

But lately he’s just not been eating.

A few weeks ago he started thinking that his food was infected. With what I’m not sure. But he was sure it was infected.
So he started not eating.
He really wasn’t eating much at all
And we seem to have slipped into a pattern where he mostly eats toast and cereal.
He hasn’t wanted his food
He hasn’t been hungry
He’s been too distracted with his computer games
Eating just wasn’t happening

And so he’s had toast
And cereal

He’s starting to look a little on the skinny side. Drawn.
Not healthy.

I dont like to see him like this and I dont want food to become a big issue

The girls are away for 25 days
Which means I have more time.

More time to put into mealtimes with O

I really do believe that a little bit of patience goes a long way I have time to be patient

Today I made him dinner vegetable fingers, wedges and carrots, peas and sweetcorn

I told him when I started cooking it
Told him when there were ten minutes left
Told him to come down 5 minutes before it was ready

We sat together
No distractions

And he ate all of it , well , he left a few veg but he did have ALOT of veg

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Then he polished off a whole pack of melon slices.

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No drama no worries.
Just us sitting together eating.

And O ate the best meal he’s had in ages.

I’m going to introduce all of his favourites back to him over the summer , while we have time to just be, sit and eat and hopefully he will remember how much he loves food.

Real tasty food. Not just cereal and toast.

For supper tonight muesli is on the menu.

I’m also going to buy a timer because it really made a difference that O knew exactly when to come for dinner

time and patience , they are not the answer but they certainly help

Read it love it blog it : review : UNDONE

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I’ve read the first book on my summer read it love it blog it reading list , you can read my list herehttp://wp.me/p3e49B-1Ab Jem and Kai are best friends , they have always been best friends they do everything together , Jem is in love with Kai but Kai isn’t in love with her. Because he’s gay.
After events at a party leading to Kai being outed on the Internet Kai kills himself.
Jem is left behind , she is alone, she doesn’t know who did this to Kai but she is going to find out and make them pay
With terrible consequences

This book is actually a young adult book but I usually enjoy young adult books so when I saw it on special offer I had to give it a try.
I thoroughly enjoyed it.
The book is very moving. Jem is left alone after Kai kills himself and she wants revenge .
She sets about finding out who did this to Kai and sets in motion a plan for getting them back.
Although Jem finds herself becoming part of the very group of friends she wants to tear apart.
Throughout the book are letters that Kai wrote for Jem before he killed himself. She is to open one a month for a year.
The letters are very sweet and touching , I know it’s been done before ( I think it’s in ps I love you) but the letters work and are an important part if the book. When Jem becomes part of the group she wants to tear apart she’s torn between liking being part of them and wanting to take them down.
This culminates in a terrible event .

This book runs through every kind of feeling and emotion , the storyline kept me turning the pages and I did not see the ending coming at all. It really did take me by surprise.

I would recommend this book to all adult and young adult alike.

Next I’m reading a heart shaped bruise by Tanya Byrne

Please link up and tell me what you’re reading , or what you just read , I’d love to hear your reading list.

Summer holiday bucket list

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With the girls , and one of the boys going away over the summer it leaves me with 3 teenagers who would rather poke themselves in the eyes with hot sticks than join in on family days out and O.

I’ve been trying to think of some fun things to do with O , the places we go have to be a bit quiet and not too busy for O and most of all cheap

Me and O have come up with some things together and there are some things I want to do.

So this is our summer holiday bucket list

battersea park zoo
adult £8.75 child 6:50
we’ve been before so we know its a good day out. It’s not far from my mums house and it isn’t too busy there.

Wimbledon common – the windmill
free
it’s just a short walk from us and its always nice to spend a day on the common. It’s also nice to stop at the windmill for an ice cream

Hampton court maze
adult £4:40 child £2:75
This is the one that O is most keen on. I’m not so keen , I have no sense of direction and I’m actually quite worried about getting lost. But I’ve promised we will give it a go.

London wetlands centre
adult £9.95 child £5:50
Its just down the road from us and We’ve been before so we know its a lovely place to spend a day and they have a lovely little playground O has played there a few times so I think he will be ok with it

imperial war museum
free
O has been keen to go here for a while and it’s only a short train ride away.
A big bonus is that there is a Burger King at Waterloo and we love Burger King

We will make use of the cineworld movies for juniors £1:00

O has agreed to ride his bike on our playground across the road a couple of times a week ( as long as we go early so there aren’t people there)

O is going to finish his doodle pad

I want to read all the books on my summer reading list

I want to do everything in the ” wreck this journal ” book

We are going to have a couple of sleepovers at my mums house so O can scoot up and down along the river Thames.

Spend a couple of days with my friend Sue and her boys while they are in London all the way from Yorkshire

Spend a day with my friend Naomi and her children

Have lots of pyjama days

Take lots of photos !!

I also want to spend a few days at bishops park and Wimbledon
Park , and we want to see the new smurfs movie but we will save these things till the girls are home so we can have some fun together.

I think this makes for a reasonably cheap and fun summer !!

Wreck this journal

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My girls are going away , first they are going camping for a week then on the same day they come home they are off to Wales for 3 weeks with their dad.
I wanted to give them a little surprise going away present and * whispers* they get a bit bored at their dads so when they both happened to mention this book last week I thought I’d have a look.

The book is basically a project in creativity , each page has a random instruction on it for you to carry out

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There are lots more …. It tells you to drip coffee on it , take it onto the shower , draw with borrowed pens , rub the book on a dirty car , stick your pocket lint in , collect the letter w and stick it in ….. You get my drift …. Random !

This is my favourite one

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I think it would be fun to stick in a photo of yourself doing this.

I think the girls will love this. It will give them a little something to do every day. And it definitely gives you scope to get quite creative.

I’m not creative at all, although I’d like to be , so I’m even going to get myself one of these and over the summer try to kick start my creativity.

When you have finished the book you seal it up and post it to yourself.

Then you can sit down with a cup of tea and a biscuit and marvel at the wonderful creativity you have unleashed in yourself. ( probably )

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When me and the girls have finished ours I’ll make a post showing some of our wonderful creations.

*I’ve written about this book purely because I think it’s a rather brilliant idea. I paid for them myself and all views are my own

6 months old ! 🎉

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6 months ,
That’s how long I’ve been here.
Blogging on mumblingsontheverge

I used to be a reader of blogs , I enjoyed reading them but never saw myself as a blogger.
Then I thought why not give it a try
Mostly because I need hobbies that are cheap … Or better yet … free ,reading is my favourite thing to do , so I thought perhaps I’d enjoy writing too.
And I do , I enjoy it , I enjoy it more and more and I’m a little proud of this here blog
6 months ago I had no idea if I actually had anything to say , anything worthy of blog space but I do.
I’ve found that I do in fact have plenty of thoughts and feelings to write about.
Are they any good ?
Well , I hope so , people are reading and commenting and liking my posts and each month I have more views than the month before. * whispers* it’s nice to see the numbers going up
I don’t take too much notice of the stats unless I’ve tried something new , a new way of writing , writing about something different … If those posts don’t get read then I take it as a hint to stick to what I already do.
I’ve never had a nasty comment , I had lots of lovely ones though.
And I’ve found lots of support through my blog.
Having my blog even gave me the courage to make my butterfly minds website .
I haven’t really got a thing that I write about , I guess it’s mostly been about O and school , but there isn’t school for a while so I will be writing about the summer holidays assuming I can get O to go out anywhere
And as I have more reading time I will be doing some book reviews , and I’m taking part in #my99psummer so there will be some blogs about that coming up.
I must mention that I had some help recently to make my blog look a bit more snazzy , from the lovely @ClaraUnravelled thank you !!!

All that remains to say is happy 6 month blog birthday to myself and THANKYOU to everyone who has been reading.I always appreciate anyone taking the time to read my stuff

Raising money for the national autistic society

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Hello , I’m afraid I’m coming to you with a begging bowl today , not for myself but for the national autistic society. Next week my friend Sue is in London with her boys , we went to school together about a hundred years ago so we will be getting together while she’s here all the way from Yorkshire
Sue also has a son with autism so we thought that while we have the chance to do something together we would try and raise a little money or a lot for the national autistic society.
Because they do great work for a very worthy cause.
We’ve decided to do a sponsored walk ( mostly because its easy to organise )
But because I have psoriatic arthritis I can’t be walking 20 miles or any such great distances , so we have decided on 5 miles , in our pyjamas.
It’s not mountain climbing but it’s something , and the more people that do something – the more big things can happen.
We will tweet our walk that’s exciting live action right there and afterwards blog about it , hopefully with lots of photos , although I really don’t do photos so maybe photos of sue.
It’s been tough finding anyone to sponsor us to be honest , I know we are all skint but it is a very good cause.
If you could be kind enough to sponsor us , even just a little , everything helps , we would be so utterly grateful and astonished at your kindness
Here is our virgin money giving link , I will love you forever ( or something) if you help us to help the national autistic society. http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/8TOZERS