Thursday, July 28, 2016


Some projects are easy to finish.  You get to the end and you walk away.  Others linger.

You can't find just the right word to finish the post.   Or maybe you think the the answer will come to you if you just wait.  The worst is when you think you're finished but things just keep popping up.  

The first two things don't bother me too much.  I enjoy finding the right words.  Sometimes a post will stay in the drafts folder for a weeks, waiting for just the right words.  

As for waiting for the right answer or solution, it's a speciality of mine.  I'm a thinker.  I'm a percolator.  Ya know, like an old fashion coffee maker.  I like to let ideas drip in my brain for a while.  That's how I've come up with some of favorite ideas.  

It's that last one that drives me crazy.  When you think you're done with something but it keeps popping up, wanting more attention.  "You forgot to do this"  "You should change this" "Pay more attention to me" So frustrating when you thought something was finished, when you thought you could walk away.  

What can you do when something you thought was finished, something you want to be done with, keeps begging for attention?

First, think about who is making the request.  Some requests from bosses or supervisors can't be ignored.  You have to submit to their authority.  Some requestors are haters.  They don't want what's best for you or your project.  Ignore them. 

Next, evaluate the request.  Is there value the changes that are being requested?  If not, don't make them. Don't let your pride take over here. Try not to fall into the trap of the messenger.  Maybe you don't like how the message was delivered or you don't like the messenger. That doesn't mean that their feedback isn't valid.  If the changes suggested are going to make things better, take them. 

Finally, if you decide to make changes, make them and be done.  Don't linger.  If you're upset about having to make changes, don't let your anger get in the way to making the changes.   Easier said than done, right?  But, seriously, being mad wouldn't finish this thing off.  

Remember, most things last only for a season.  The season may be long or short.  But you'll finish and be able to walk away.  Hang in there!

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Be Bold

I'm a font nerd so I love this shirt...
from Etsy

Way back in 2011, I wrote about being brave.  Is being brave and being bold similar?  I think so, you have to have a certain amount of bravery to be bold.  But they are both deeply related to being secure.  When you are secure in yourself, you tend to be braver and more bold (based on my experience and absolutely no research.  Well, maybe there's research some where about that but I didn't research it).

I don't always feel secure in myself.  I know who I am. I know whose I am.  I know my purpose.  I know my gifts.  I know most of my weaknesses.  You'd think that would make me feel secure.  Not always.  I still worry if I'm doing the right thing.  Or wearing the right thing.  Or unintentionally hurting people's feelings.  Or if I'm 'good enough' at the things I'm good at - whatever that means.

As you might image, that makes it a little difficult to be bold.  I think a lot of things I don't say. That can be a good thing but I also miss opportunities to bless others because I'm not bold.

photo by Kaycey Bruhn
A few weeks ago at Zac's World Series baseball tournament, I heard of an awesome example of boldness.  One of my good friends has a son Zac's age on another team.  After a game that they won, the other team, the losing team, asked if they could pray together.  The losing team prayed for the winning team as they moved forward in the tournament.  Man! That is so bold.  Imagine looking past your hurt and disappointment over losing to pray for the team that just beat you.  And not just pray for them but to approach the team and pray with them.  Wow!

photo by Kaycey Bruhn
That act of obedience and boldness had a ripple effect. When my friend's son's team lost, they went to the team that beat them and asked to pray with them.  Isn't that awesome?

That's what boldness can do.  Boldness inspires others.  When we speaking loving truth to someone, they are emboldened to encourage someone else.

How will you be bold? Look for opportunities to be bold today!

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Screwing Up

We all screw up.  I personally mess up several hundred times a day.  My husband is a wonderful man.  He has a great many strengths. One of the things that I'm most proud of is how he handles himself when he's wrong, especially when he's coaching.

Ryan is a baseball guy.  He played college baseball.  He's competitive.  He wants the best from each of the kids.

We just finished up baseball season with a World Series tournament.  There are about a hundred and eleven World Series tournaments so it really isn't a World Series.  It's just a really big baseball tournament.  Ryan is the head coach for Zac's age group.
He's not great at crisis management.  He sometimes flies off the handle.  He gets caught up in the heat of the moment.  This usually only lasts a few minutes.  Maybe an hour.  He's quick to realize that he's done something wrong.  And he handles it quickly.  What does he do?

He humbles himself and seeks reconciliation.  He goes to that person and asks for forgiveness.  He might try to explain why he did what he did.  Or he might just say "I'm sorry, I shouldn't have done that".

With the baseball team, he will sometimes talk to the team about it after the game.  "I did this. It wasn't right.  I've asked player name for forgiveness. I'm sorry."

Before our last game in the World Series we found out that we would have to forfeit the rest of our games.  We had a player get hurt so Ryan added a new player for the tournament.  The whole process is computerized so Ryan thought if the system let him add the player he was good to go.  Not so much.  A team challenged and the tournament director told him the system shouldn't have let him add the player.

Ryan talked to the team about it. He apologized to the team, the specific player and the parents.  Then he went to the other team's coaches.  He explained what had happened.  He apologized for not knowing the rules more throughly.  He wanted to protect the player and our team's reputation.  He wanted the other team's coaches know that he wasn't trying to cheat.

I have never been so proud of him.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

When Autism Punched Me in the Face, quite literally

Gymnastics didn't go so well last week.  I knew B-man was out of sorts all day.  I tried to protect him from himself but he wasn't having it.

He loves to be around friends.  The trouble is that he's not always able to handle the interaction.  He gets overloaded.  I wanted him to stay home that day and rest.  He wasn't having it.

He and his friend had a confrontation and he came home upset.  He laid down.  Finally! When it was time to get ready for gymnastics I went to check on him, thinking he'd be asleep.  No such luck.  And he wanted to go to gymnastics.  I agreed.

He actually did pretty well for most of the time.  I think he was 45 minutes in when he lost it.  He stormed over to the parent's area, crying.  He crawled into my lap.  I tried to comfort him, soothe him.  He was too upset.  When he gets that way, my words are not helpful.  I try not to talk, I just hold him tight and rock him.  He wasn't having it.

He cried.  He screamed.  He punched me in the face.  I worked to restrain him, pull him tight.  Give him some deep pressure sensory input.

He jumped out of my lap.  He screamed "I'm leaving!" He stormed off. He knocked down a chair.  I caught up with him.  I made him pick up the overturned chair.  We went outside.  This particular meltdown lasted about 15 or 20 minutes.  It felt like 3 hours to me.  I can't imagine how long it felt to B-man.

Despite days like this, I still believe that AUTISM IS NOT A TRAGEDY.

How could it be?  Have you seen my little man?  He's so au-some.  I love his mind.  I love him.

I'll take the rough days because it gives me days like theses...

B: Momma, I like verbal irony
Me: Oh, yeah, what is verbal irony?
B: it's when you say the opposite of what you mean. Like when you say it's a beautiful day but it's dark and gloomy outside.

Or when he tells me Calvin Coolidge had a pet hippopotamus and Herbert Hoover had a pet alligator. I have not fact checked those but I believe it.

When he asks the nurse practitioner: So, what bacteria has caused my ear infection?
NP: ummm...usually staph or strep
B: I'm glad to hear it's not MRSA.  Because you know MRSA and antibiotics (makes URGH face)
Me: Are you trying to say that MRSA doesn't respond to antibiotics?
B: sadly, yes.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Talking to Autistic Kids about Salvation

"Accept Jesus into your heart."

"Cross the line of faith."

"Washed clean by the blood of the lamb."

"Jesus' blood has covered our sins."

These are wonderful churchy sentiments.  Think about them literally for one minute.

"Accept Jesus into your heart." How?  How can a person come into my heart? I've never seen Jesus, how will he get into my heart? Will that hurt?

"Cross the line of faith." Where is the line?

"Washed clean by the blood of the lamb."  "Jesus' blood has covered our sins." Yikes! I don't like blood. I don't want anyone's blood on me.  Lamb's are so cute. I don't want them to bleed.  Blood is red. I skinned my knee and the blood stained my jeans.  How can blood wash my clean?

Many autistic kiddos are black and white thinkers.  Figurative language makes 0.0% sense to many of them.  Christianity is full of figurative language.  How can we help autistic kids, or any concrete thinker, understand the love of Christ and salvation?

Explain that we are sinners.  We want to choose correctly but we can not. And this means that we can not be close to God.

But, God made a plan to help us get closer to him.  He sent his son, Jesus.  Jesus lived a perfect life on Earth as an example for us.  But we aren't perfect.  We can not do everything perfectly like Jesus.

God needed some one to help us get closer to him.  Jesus died so we could be closer to God.

Salvation means agreeing with God that we need help to be closer to Him.  It means agreeing that Jesus died to make a way for us to be closer to God.  Salvation means that we believe that God loved us enough to send His son to die for us and that Jesus died for us.

When we agree that Jesus died for us so that we can be closer to God, we are saved.  We will live with Jesus in Heaven forever.  Because Jesus loved us, we get to love one another.

Romans 10:9-10 explains this very clearly.  I like the NIV best for clarity...

If you confess with you mouth that Jesus is LORD and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.  For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved.

The cool thing is that God has a plan to bring everyone to Himself.  Autistic people. Concrete thinkers.  A goofy momma of 3 boys.  Every. One.

For God knew his people in advance, and he chose them to become like his Son, so that his Son would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.  And having chosen them, he called them to come to him.  And having called them, he gave them right standing with himself. And having given them right standing, he gave them his glory.
Romans 8:29-20 NIV

As Emily Colson's  pastor told her about her autistic son, "God speaks Max's language."

Note: this is not a perfect solution.  This explanation still has some figurative language.  I'd love to hear your suggestions in the comments.

Note: I geared this post towards children because that's the population I have the most experience with.  I would imagine these suggestions will work for adults as well.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016


Yesterday I became the mother of 2 teenage boys.  How is this even possible?  Most days I feel about 12 years old.  Out of sorts, unsure, giggly.  How is it that God has entrusted me with these 3 boys? How is it that I've managed to guide them safely to the teenage years?  If I've done anything by the grace of God, it's raised these boys.  I have no idea what I'm doing.

Since Zac and Sam are older and creating their own digital footprint, I don't write about them too much.  I don't want to violate their privacy or embarrass them.  But for birthdays, all bets are off.  Just kidding.  I let Zac read and approve this.

Zac is a cool kid.  He's generally calm and quiet.  But his wit is sharp.  He and Sam go on vacation with my uncle every year and my uncle always makes them word games to play.  This year they were on the last game, the big money pay out game.  Everyone was struggling.  Zac declares, "I'm the Bernie Sanders of this game.  I have no hope of winning but I'm hanging in there. I wouldn't give up." What!?!  Where did that come from? We aren't a political family.  I don't recall discussing any of the candidates with Zac.  But there it is...

There are times when I think Zac is really a sloth in clothes.  He can sleep 20 out of 24 hours in a day. When getting ready for school, he's the last one out the door.  My nickname is Pokey Puppy.  He's a hard worker, though.  Once he's out of bed, he takes care of his business (generally =).

Zac is an ESPN addict.  He gets alerts on his phone.  He reads.  He knows all kinds of player stats.  He and Sam love to argue about GOATs (greatest of all time for those of you 30 and over).  Sam has to watch it because Zac will bust out some heavy duty stats on him in those arguments.

But my favorite thing about Zac is his loving heart.  I found he and Brennan on the floor of B's room the other night huddled over B's iPad.  Last Thursday, he and B orchestrated a family game night with the game Super Fight.  We usually play 1 on 1 but they had hatched a plan for a big family, winner take all face off at the end.  One Christmas he was sad we didn't have anything under the tree (I'm a last minute shopper because I can't stand to have presents for people, I want to give as soon as I get them!).  He wrapped up some of his things to put under the tree for his family.

He's not perfect.  But he loves the LORD, loves his family and is a hard worker.  What else could a momma ask for?

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Looking or Seeking

"Momma! You have to take me to Aunt Laura's car! Right now!" I had just walked in the door from work and this was how B greeted me.

"Wait! Why do you need Aunt Laura's car?"

"I left my Skylanders in her car and need them right now!"

I decided to text Aunt Laura instead of run down there. They weren't home but they would look in the car when they got back to it.  About an hour later came the reply - no Skylanders in the car.

B was on the edge of meltdown by this point.  He's not so good with the waiting.  I tried to calm him and walk him through the morning when Aunt Laura brought him home with the Skylanders.

"NO! Sam and I already looked there!" was the answer to all my questions.  I started walking the house myself.  No Skylanders in his room.  No Skylanders in the living room.  No Skylanders in the kitchen.  These are his top 3 toy locations.  I moved to tier 2.  No Skylanders in my bathroom, no skylanders in any bathroom for that matter, no Skylanders in my room.  Finally, tier 3 - the non-dining dining room.  There they were! Relief spread through out the land as B ran off to his room to play Skylanders.

I sat down on the couch and thought about what had just happened.  B had looked all over the house.  He really wanted to find his toys.  But was he really seeking them?  My boys have a tendency to look to their left and to their right then declare the item lost forever.  They don't do a lot of seeking.

Let's look at the definitions of look and seek...

Looking involves gazing and glancing.  Seeking involves looking and searching.  Looking is more passive than seeking.  

Which does God want from us, looking for Him or seeking Him?

I believe He wants us to do both.

Look for God in the little things of life.  One of my sorority sisters calls these God Winks.  Look to see the ways God is moving in your life and lives of others.  See His majesty in nature.  See His sovereignty in your situation.  When you start looking for God in everyday things, you'll be amazed. You'll become more aware of how He is guiding and caring for you.

Seeking God is more active.  When I think of seeking, I think of running towards something.  So to me, seeking God means running towards Him.  Reading my Bible daily.  Going to him in prayer throughout the day.

For most of my life, I struggled with my 'quiet time'. I knew I needed one but I couldn't get it going consistently.  Until I started thinking about how I learn best.  I'm a writer.  I learn best when I'm writing.  So, I incorporated writing into my study.  If I'm not doing a formal study, I get up. get some coffee, cuddle up on the couch and read a chapter of the Bible.  I have a study Bible so I read the commentary on the chapter after I read the chapter.  Then I get out my notebook and write God a letter.  I usually thank Him for whatever I've just learned.  I write about what's on my heart.  I write out my prayer request.  Writing helps me stay focused.  My mind doesn't wander as much.  Then I try to spend 5 or 10 minutes just being silent.  This is the hardest part.  And it doesn't always happen.  Sometimes B-man is up and wants to talk or it's time to take the Bigs some place.

My BBF Rachel gave me a prayer notebook that I try to use every night before I go to bed.  This is the hardest one because when I'm ready for bed, I'm done.  I forget to do this one A LOT! But I like it because it's guided which is easier for me at night.  It has 4 Ps to write about.  Peaks, Pits, Praises & Prayers.  (I wish I knew where she got it so I could give credit properly).

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Obedience and Waiting

I had a plan for my life.  I knew what I wanted and I waited (not so) patiently for that opportunity.  Then things didn't work out the way I wanted it to.  Upheaval ensued.   I like to have goals and a plan.  I no longer had either.

But God does work all things together for my good (Romans 8:28).  He used that negative situation to draw me closer to Him. Through this process, I submitted to obedience.  I am so glad I did! I have not regretted it one bit.  You can read more about that here.

One of the many things that I love about God is how he uses all kinds of moments to get me thinking.  The other night we had a really bad storm.  I woke up when the electricity went out.  Then B-man woke up scared because his lamp was off.  He crawled in bed with us and decided to use my belly for his pillow.  I laid in bed soaking up the moment, listening to the storm and B's breath as he quickly fell into sleep.

I can't remember what made me think about obedience and waiting in this situation.  Maybe it was because I was waiting for the lights to come back on.  I have no idea.

Obedience is easy when God is asking me to go do something. I'm a do-er.  I like to serve and do things.  I am action oriented.  I like to discuss ideas but I love to act on them.

Obedience is hard when God is asking me to wait.  To stay still.  To not act.  Torturous.

It's in the waiting that I begin to doubt God.  Is this really what you want me to be doing?  Shouldn't I be doing X, Y or Z?

But that's the lesson, right?  To learn to wait.  To trust God no matter what He's asking (or not asking) me to do.

Oh, it's so hard!! He's asked me to do some hard things.  I can specifically think of 2 conversations that He called me to have that were hard, very uncomfortable.  Another glorious conversation that led to the beginning of Valuable.  I've come to enjoy hard things.

Waiting is hard in a different way.  I want to rush forward.  I want to take action.  In the Spring, I read Genesis.  I realized that the entire book of Genesis is about people who KNEW that God had a great plan for them. They actually physically heard from God.  But they could not wait.  They knew the plan but tried to do it their way, not God's.  And messed it up.  But God redeemed all those situations.
I'd rather not give God a situation to redeem.  I'd rather do what He wants me to do the first time.

My daily devotional this morning was about waiting, being on the shelf.  "It can either erode your faithfulness or enhance your faithfulness.  It's all in how you choose to respond." Pastor Tom mentions 3 things we need to do while we're waiting: choose to be forgiving, choose to be patient and choose to be faithful.  You make sure you don't have any bitterness in your heart.  You make sure you're not running ahead of God. And you continuously choose obedience.

Obedience isn't a gift we give God.  It's not something we do so that He'll do something for us. It's a way we show our love to Him.  He has given us such a wonderful and free gift of salvation.  Our actions after we receive the gift of salvation are not an effort to continue earning that free gift.  Our actions after salvation are a response to that gift.  A continual love letter, a thank you card to our LORD.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Trust and Action

I want to trust in the LORD with all my heart and not lean on my own understanding.  But what does that look like?  Does that mean that I am just waiting for the LORD to act, just sitting around?  Does it mean that I'm only doing things that I feel like I have specific direction for God about?  What's my part?  God obviously made us to be active human beings.  Our bodies are designed for movement and action.  It functions better when we lead an active lifestyle.  So I don't think sitting around waiting on Him is what he intended.

Paul was a man of action.  He was also a man who listened to the LORD and headed his warnings. He also warned those around him.  In Acts 27 Paul is on a boat bound for Rome.  He was a prisoner and he had appealed his case to Caesar.  Paul knew that God wanted him to preach the Gospel in Rome.  I'd be willing to bet that he didn't think God would bring him to Rome as a prisoner.  The trip to Rome was rough.  The ship encountered bad weather.  The crew wanted to kill the all prisoners at one point in case the ship wrecked so the prisoners couldn't escape.  But God had told Paul in a dream that they would all survive.

What did Paul do with this information? He shared it.  He advised the crew members how to proceed.  That's bold.  Have you, as a student, ever tried to tell a teacher what to do?   Most teachers don't react well.  I know I haven't always reacted well to a student telling me what to do.  As a matter of fact, I may have said to a class "One of us is the tech specialist and one of us is y'all.  I know what I'm doing."  when a class tried to advise me on fixing a projector.  So I can imagine how the sailors felt when a prisoner tried to tell them how to save their ship.

Paul trusted the LORD with his life and ministry.  Paul also took action to minister to people.

So the questions remains...when do we hang tight and trust the LORD and when do we take action to change a situation?  Can we do both at the same time?

Maybe it's not such a hard thing after all.

My friend Kelley gives the best advice that works in all situations: do the next right thing.

We don't have to know exactly what God is doing.  We just have to do the next right thing.  We don't have to know the next 25 right things to do.  Just the next one.

We do, however, have to stay plugged in to God.  If we are not in His word and communicating with him through prayer, it's very difficult to know the next right thing.  We tend to come up with the next easiest thing which is not at all the same as the next right thing.

For a planner and plotter, this is not an easy thing to learn or practice.  But, I'm trying to be obedient to the LORD.  Just do the next thing He's asking me to do.  Everyday He's asking me to trust Him.  To rely on His goodness, His love for me, His plan.  To put aside my plan.

That's really the rub.  I have a plan for my life and so does God.  But one of us is God and one of us is me.  His plan trumps my plan.  Oh how hard it is to even type that.  I have a great plan.  Why can't it be His plan? Because my plan is only temporarily great. God's plan is in it for the long haul.

LORD, help me trust you all the time.  Let me know when to take action.  Let that action be aligned with Your plan for me.

Join me tomorrow as we talk about waiting and obedience.  You can click the button with the envelope to subscribe and get my posts in your inbox!

Thursday, July 7, 2016


Friendship is a tricky thing.  You have to find a person who you want to be around and who wants to be around you.  You have to be forgiving to be a friend, as does your friend.  You look past each other's weaknesses and focus on strengths.

Friendship requires vulnerability.  You have to let down your guard and let people see the real you.  Some people aren't interested in the real you.  They want the happy you, the sporty you, the party you.  A real friend also wants the stressed out you, the OMG-I-can't-believe-this-is-happening you. The deer in the head lights of life you. They aren't interested in showing you the real them.  Everything is surface.  The problem is that you often don't know who these friends are until something major happens and they leave you hanging.  They disappear.  That's confusing and hurtful. But in the long run, it's for the best.  

I have great friends from childhood, high school, college and graduate school.  Many of those friendship start out based on proximity or shared interests but developed into deeply loving relationships.  I am still in contact with many of them via Facebook.  I still feel close to them.  I vacation every year with 4 of my favorite women.  Words can not express how much I love these women.  The problem is that we are scattered through out the state.  3 of us in the DFW area and 2 in the Houston area.  We are in contact weekly through a group text message.  But we only get to do life together 4 days a year.  (I can't wait to see them in 13 short days!!)

I will admit that I have struggled with adult friendships. You know, the day-in-day out, every day, doing life together friends.  This seems strange for me to say but, I don't let a lot of people into my mess.  It takes a special person to get to see the hard side of B's autism.  And it takes a special person to see it and still stick around.  

Things get trickier when you have kids.  Now your friend has to accept you AND your spouse AND your kids. And you have to do the same for their spouse and kids.  If you are going to spend a good amount of time with them, they not only have to accept your kids but love them as their own.

I am happy to say that in the last couple of years, this has been different.  God brought some families into our lives that have become part of our family.  The wives get along.  The husbands get along.  The kids get along.  Our friends are funny and loving.  We genuinely enjoying hanging out together.  They are easy to be around - this can not be discounted.  Some people are judgy, they exhaust you.  Not my people.  

We are not just hanging out because our kids are friends.  They build me up. They encourage me.  And mercy are they funny! My face hurts after being around them.  And I love it (cue the goofy "I can't feel my face when I'm with you" song).  I could not love their kids anymore unless they were my own.  These people are such a blessing!

I understand what Jesus is saying in John 15 - "Love your friends the way I love you." We don't always make it easy for Jesus to love us.  We disobey.  We stray.  We don't listen. We turn away. But He's always right there loving us anyway.  Drawing us back to Him.  That's what a good friend does.  They keep loving us and holding us close.  It's what we should do for our friends.  It's what my friends do for me. I hope it's what I do for them.  

Wednesday, July 6, 2016


Once upon a time, a physical therapist told us the B would do best in an individual sport like gymnastics or martial arts.  Last summer I signed B up for a karate camp at the Sensable Gym, a gym designed for kids with special needs.  He loved camp! He loved his Sensei! We signed up for karate lessons!

B received Most Spirited
Award from his awesome Sensei
He enjoyed karate lessons but each lesson almost always ended in a meltdown.  His Sensei was so patient and loving with him.  He always struck a great balance between pushing him and letting him have his space.  If I'm perfectly honest, though, karate lessons were hard for me. It was hard to see him lose it every week.  I was hard to stand my ground when he wanted to quit.  But I really wanted him to have a sport or activity that was his.  We took a break from karate after Christmas.  We gave it another shot later in the Spring but he wasn't having it.

This past Spring, B expressed an interest in football.  He even attended football camp put on by our high school coaches.  It was a great experience.  He's signed up to play on our local youth league team for the fall and Ryan is going to coach.  I'm a little nervous but excited for him as well.

Our neighbors are among our best friends.  They have a daughter B's age.  They get along great.  I think he's spent as much time at their house this summer as he's spent at ours.  Their daughter takes gymnastics lessons.  B tagged along to lessons one day and the coach let him participate.  He loved it.  Last week, he wanted to go again.  My friend asked if she could sign him up.  Sure, why not!?!

I have had a discussion with my neighbor about how B acts differently when I'm not around. Our plan is for her to take him to gymnastics and I'll come later to watch.  Yesterday was the first day for this plan.

When I came in they were stretching and warming up.  Then they lined up and crossed the floor doing various things like jumping and rolling.  In this processes, they were supposed to cartwheel down the floor.  B waited patiently (for him) until all the other boys went then he told the coach he didn't know how to cartwheel.  The coach very patiently showed him how to do it.

Throughout the lesson, whenever B would say "I don't know how to do it!"  The coach would reply, "I know, I'm teaching you".  He never seemed to get irritated with B.  He corrected him on both form and gym etiquette.

B was frustrated most of the lesson.  Some of the boys are not beginners.  However, he stayed with his group and tried each activity.  He did leave the group one time. But the coach was patient with him.  He asked him to rejoin the group then left him alone.  Within a few minutes, B was back with the group.

After the lesson B was not too happy.  He was tired.  We had a bad storm the night before that interrupted his sleep.  He didn't want to talk about the lesson.  Even later in the evening, he didn't want to talk.

But he didn't say he was quitting either.  And that's progress!

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Engineering Design Process by B (videos)

B loves to create! Around Earth Day his class did a 'Trash to Treasure' project where they created things out of used materials.  This lit a fire in B.  He has been digging in our recycle bin for materials everyday since then.

The other day he wanted to make a race track with a shark tank in the middle of it.  It was the day before recycle pick up so we had plenty of materials.  He also found my stash of skewers so he was very excited to use those.

I worked with him and we created a track.  Then he started the test runs.

No success.  Undaunted, we made adjustments and tried again.

Still no success.  After I stopped videoing he said something interesting so I asked him to repeat it.

Did you catch that?  B man knows the design process.  I'm sure he watched something about it on YouTube.  He watched videos on the planets and what vitamins do in your body the other day and now has them committed to memory.

This is a kid who used to give up and throw a fit when something didn't work right the first time.  And now he has language to express what's happening.  They might not be his own words but they are words and they are used in the correct way.  And I am amazed.

Also, you're welcome for his awesome 'monster truck rally announcer' voice during the trials.