Archives

everything you ever wanted : a memoir

I recently finished Jillian Lauren’s latest book, everything you ever wanted, a riveting memoir about her journey into motherhood. Initially, I was interested in the book because of her story as it related to mine : she and her husband adopted an Ethiopian child with special needs. But, as I was reading through the pages, […]

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Actors for Autism

(With my friend and fellow special needs mama, Rahsaana) Last week, I had the privilege of attending an event benefitting Actors for Autism a non-profit organization dedicated to the advancement, education, and training of people on the autism spectrum in various programs such as arts, film & television, animation, visual effects and video game industries. […]

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Cheerful Helpers Alumni Association : Game Night

(Cookie decorating fun!) When Arizona graduated from Cheerful Helpers 2 years ago, I felt like I was losing a limb. The community of staff, teachers and families carried me through some tumultuous years and not only changed my child’s life but mine as well. I always knew I would stay connected to the school because […]

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The R-Word

(www.r-word.org) I always cringe when I hear the words “retard” or “retarded”, no matter what the context. I am sensitive to the negative connotations of the R-word because of my daughter’s disabilities and want to do my part in raising awareness about ending the use of this highly derogatory word. Today (March 2, 2016) is […]

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A New School Year 2015

(Walking to school!) Today, Arizona starts 2nd grade. It is her second year at a mainstream public school in a general education classroom. For the 2.5 years prior to coming to this school, we crossed town in lots of traffic to get to Cheerful Helpers Child & Family Study Center. And because it was such […]

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Spotlight : Swim Instructor Brianna Rhodes

(Lessons with Brianna) I first met Brianna years ago; before either of us were mothers. We became fast friends and continue to enjoy life together, now mostly with our kids in tow! Brianna has been a private swim instructor for over 20 years. She is also a trained behaviorist and has worked in various public […]

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Spotlight : Social Foundations – Summer Camp 2015

(Summer 2015) This summer marks the first time Arizona has had some real time off. For most of her school career, she has attended schools with ESY programs; keeping her occupied through the end of July. But this year, Arizona had a 2+ month stretch of ZERO schedule that we needed to account for, and […]

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IEP : Special Education Advocates

(My happy school girl at Back to School Night this year) This year was the first time in awhile that I haven’t hired an advocate to come along to an IEP meeting. It ended up being the right decision, because it was one of the most agreeable meetings I’ve participated in for Arizona. In fact, […]

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Student Of The Month

(A Proud Girl) Last Friday, Arizona was awarded Student of the Month. Everyone was excited for her, but Arizona doesn’t like when things are exciting. For one, people tend to get louder and clap and say things like, “WOW! Amazing job! I’m SO PROUD OF YOU.” And for my little peanut, this is overwhelming. Arizona’s […]

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Spotlight : Cheerful Helpers Child & Family Study Center

(At a recent alumni event, Arizona with Head of School, Ellen Pearlman) Cheerful Helpers Child & Family Study Center changed my life. It is the single most important intervention that Arizona has had to date. The program is a DIAMOND in the rough and unfortunately, the best kept secret in Los Angeles. If every child […]

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