Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Taking a Break

Did you know that Christmas is less than a week away? Did you know that I'm not done shopping? Did you know that I have no idea what to get for the people left on my lists? Did you know that I haven't even thought about wrapping the things I have purchased?  And did you know that I still have 2 1/2 days left at work before Christmas break? To quote my friend Andrea "What the what!?!"

The shopping and wrapping isn't that unusual, actually.  Ryan and I generally go shopping the day after school gets out for break.  It's a huge, marathon day of fun.  The trouble is that this year we get out much later.  We've done some shopping but we still have a ways to go. 

I do have a lot of things left to do before Christmas.  As I'm sure you do as well.   Last year I wrote about my list making and the not letting my lists overshadow the people I'm doing things for.  To that end, I'm going to take a break from blogging until Tuesday, January 9, 2018.  Look at me, not even freaking out about typing 2018 (liar, liar pants on fire). 

I have 2 major things to work on this break. 

#1.  Hanging with these dudes

#2.  Reading these beauties

Watch out for funny B stories in the new year and some book reviews! 

Merry Christmas and Happy New Years, friends.  I hope you'll return in January. 

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Finding Your People

I've worked with middle schoolers for my entire career.  For 17 years I've watched kids struggle to find their place, their people.  I always feel bad for them because I know how that feels, to not know who you're people are.

As a girl, I lived in the same town my whole life.  I did have a little friendship issue before my senior year but I was about slide right into a new group.  In college I had my sorority sisters.  As a grown up, it's been a little more difficult.

I am so blessed to have found my people.  I am double blessed to have two groups of people.  And I got to spend time with both sets lately.  I got to spend the weekend with my sorority sisters and I got to eat dinner with our local friends.  Both were so good for my soul.  Lots of laughing.  So, so much laughing.

Here's the deal, the world is full of broken people.  We're all broken.  Some people can't handle your kind of brokenness and you can't handle theirs.  You might be a generous person.  They might be too broken to receive your generosity.  They may think you want something in return.  They may hoard it and try to keep you from being generous to others.  These are not your people. Your people wouldn’t use you. Your people wouldn’t keep you from loving others.

The key is find the broken people who fit with your kind of broken.  That way, you each give what the other needs and receive it with an open heart. Your people love you the way you are while pushing you to be better.

Take heart, it might take a while to find your people. You might have to try some people out and then find out they aren't your people.  It can be a painful discovery but it's better in the long run.  No one has a ton of free time, make sure you spend it with people who love you for yourself and who make you laugh.  For me, the laughter is the key to knowing your people. When you can laugh together you can love each other.

I hope you find your people! I'm so thankful for mine!

Wednesday, December 13, 2017


Well, the flu bug has hit our home.  Last Thursday Ryan came home around noon and went straight to bed.  Friday he went to the doctor and tested positive for flu. 

That afternoon, I got Ryan all medicated up, Lysoled everything and we cleared out. 

Monday afternoon, our school district announced that we would close on Tuesday and Wednesday because we had too many kids and staff members out due to the flu.  Since Ryan was over it and no one else felt bad, I thought we'd have a 2 day mini vacation.  We'd visit Santa maybe do some shopping. 

It was not to be...

B got in bed with us early Tuesday morning to inform me I hadn't put anything in the advent calendar.  Then promptly went back to sleep.  Which was odd.  When he woke up a couple of hours later, he was burning up.  We called the doctor. 

The thing with B is that he has a high pain tolerance.  He kept telling us that he didn't feel bad, he just had 'croaky' voice.  I'm so glad we went ahead and took him to the doctor.  He tested positive for the flu. 

This time we got more than Lysol, we all got tamiful, except for Ryan who was almost done with his tamiflu. 

The flu hasn't slowed B down much.  He played right up until time to go to the doctor.  He played when he got home.  He did lay down on the couch for a bit but even then he was plotting to open his petting sitting business this summer. 

The biggest struggle is the medicine.  B does not like liquid or chewable medicine.  The trouble is that tamiflu doesn't come in a pill for him.  Oh joy - a liquid.  The first dose of tamiflu came right back up, if you know what I mean.  I think we might have figured out a work around and, fingers crossed, the second dose will stay down. 

So many of our friends are sick right now.  I'm so thankful we have a great doctor.  I'm glad B got sick when we had the 2 days off school and work.  It's less stressful than getting a sub and worrying about him getting behind on his work. 

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Circus by B

This weekend, B-man made a pretty cool video.  Here, I'll let him tell you about it...

This is an advertisement for a circus I want to do.  Third graders would put on the circus for k-2nd graders.  For each group  there would be 1 ringmaster, 2 clowns,3 jugglers, and 4 acrobats. hope u enjoy

It's Aimee again - my favorite part is the face paint.  What's your's?

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Light it Up!

Yesterday I wrote about my love for Christmas cards. Another of my favorite things about Christmas are the lights.  Especially the lights around our house. 

Generally, I like the house on the dark side.  Dark usually equates with comfy and cozy to me.  Add white Christmas lights and blanket to that and I'm in for the night.  I want to share some of our Christmas lights with y'all!

This is our candy cane tree (everything on it is red, white and silver) plus a ceramic tree that my momma made when I was little.  The ceramic tree is the only multicolor lights in the common areas of the house.  B and Zac have multicolor lights on the trees in their rooms.  But generally, I only like white lights in our family areas.  But my ceramic tree is the exception.  This is my view each morning during my devotional. 

This is our Disney/keepsake tree in our bedroom.  I love laying in bed at night with this tree on.  Besides all my Disney ornaments I put all the boys' photo ornaments, baby's first Christmas and other keepsake ornaments. 

This is our mantle.  More Disney here.  Ryan and I got our stockings when we were dating.  When Zac was little, I ordered the stocking holders.  I ordered an extra for giggles and it turned out we needed it for B-man.  B's is the only holder with out a picture. The rest of us have pictures from a Disney World trip before B was born.  Every year I say I'm going to print out our names in a cute Disney font so everyone would be the same.  And every year I forget to do it.  Maybe this is the year...doubt it. 

When we first married my goal was to have all Disney Christmas decorations.  I found out very quickly it's hard to find high quality, nice looking Disney decor outside the parks.  So, I have areas of Disney - the mantle, my Disney tree, a Disney advent calendar and wreath (purchased in the park) and a Mikey and Minne swag that I put together myself in those early years. 

And last but not least, our house.  Ryan worked really hard on the house.  The boys helped, ever so slightly.

Do you prefer white lights or multicolored lights at Christmas?

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Christmas Greetings

I love to get mail.  You never know what kind of surprise you're going to get.  Maybe an invitation.  Maybe a bill.  Maybe a check for overpayment of services.  That one's rare, I know. This time of year getting mail is especially exciting because we're getting Christmas cards.

I love Christmas cards! My favorites are the ones with pictures.  I save them up each year.  I punch holes in them and put them on a ring and we get them out with our decorations. I love to look back and see how much everyone has changed.

I generally love the process of sending cards as well.  I like to take family pictures.  I like picking out clothes for the boys. Although I will admit, this has gotten less fun as they've gotten older.  I love getting to see how they've turned out.  There are usually a lot of B-man outtakes.

As I wrote about last week, it's been a rough fall.  My instinct in tough times is to curl up.  I'm really working on resisting that this Christmas season.  I don't want to mess up Christmas for my boys just because I'm tired and beat down.

The truth remains, I can't keep up my usual pace right now.  I want to make sure I have energy for important family times and activities so I've decided to cut our Christmas card.  But, being me, I couldn't give it up completely...

Here's what I would have put on the front

Here's a collage for the back

Here's the verse I would have incorporated

For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God.      Romans 8:19 ESV

I also would have included lyrics from O Holy Night

A thrill of hope, the weary world rejoices for yonder breaks a new and glorious morn

Enjoy our Christmas greetings and accept my apology that it wouldn't arrive in your mail this year.

Thursday, November 30, 2017


I always try to be honest with you, dear reader, so believe me when I say that this fall has been one of the hardest I've experienced.  As an educator, my life is still delineated by semesters - fall, spring and summer.  I've shared some of these hard things with you.  The death of my father in law and my anaphylaxis being the main ones.  Some of I've held back - B-mans struggles, the lingering ever present headache since the anaphylaxis, the concussion Zac suffered.  Others are not my story to tell.  Situations that I'm peripherally involved in but that have effected me to my very core. 

To be certain, the fall has been filled with good things. Sam achieved his goal of playing Varsity football as a sophomore.  He was even able to becoming the starting center 3 games into the season.  This was especially meaningful as my nephew is the quarterback.  It just felt right to see them working together again at the thing they love, the game they've played together since they were 6. Zac had an awesome 8th grade football season as well.  I love to watch my boys play the game they love. The whole environment around football makes me happy. It was wonderful to see their hard work and dedication play off. 

My new job was also a bright spot. I worked hard, as did Ryan, to transform the middle school library this summer. I rearranged the furniture to make it a more inviting space.  That sounds super simple but actually involves removing every non-fiction book from the shelves, waiting for the sainted maintenance staff to move the shelves according to my drawing, then returning all the non-fiction books to their homes.  I planned lessons and choose books to read out loud to our 5th - 8th graders.  I got a vending machine, the kind that you'd see at a restaurant - put in a quarter, get a bubble container out with a prize, that spits out book recommendations for kiddos.  My assistant bought fish.  The library is a different place and kids love it.  I know because they run to the library on their days and plop on the couch, eager to be read to.

The B-side to every good thing is the stress caused by change and new situations.  I try to remember that this is the good stress.  The stress I asked for.  But, in the end, it is stress none the less.  Please don't misunderstand me.  The fall has not been a constant pit of misery.  Many good things have happened.  I've been able to serve many people with a happy heart. It's not all doom and gloom up in here.  The struggles seem to be more acute this year.

My seemingly constant companion lately has been fatigue and heaviness of spirit.  When I finally saw my doctor about the headache I'd had since the anaphylaxis, I inquired about my fatigue concerned there was another cause.  I love my doctor, she's been my doctor since I was in college.  She must have been straight out of medical school because I've always felt like she was my age.  My sweet doctor looked straight into my eyes and said "Of course your tired.  You've had a headache for over a month.  Your brain hurts and it wants to rest." 

The downside of this need to rest are the things that get cut in favor of sleep.  A couple of times it's been this blog.  But mostly, it's been my morning Bible Study and quiet time with the LORD.  There are just some mornings I can't get out of bed until the dead last minute.  There are other times that I've gotten up but can't concentrate or understand what I'm reading.  While these leaves me feeling further from God, I know that it's in our troubles and sorrows that he pulls us close.  I have not doubted His love for me this fall. I have worried about my ability to return that affection. 

As always, music has been a healing force.  When I'm too tired to express my love and gratitude to the LORD, music steps in.  The Psalm albums by Shane and Shane have been my top playlist this fall.  I love to hear them sing the words of David.  A man after God's own heart but so ordinary a human that a pretty lady almost derailed it all. And I remember that if David did all that, and more, and was still described as a man after God's own heart there's hope for me yet. 

Hope.  A funny thing.  An odd concept. And my another of my companions.  Every day I hope I am doing a good job.  Every day I hope my headache subsides.  I hope my boys are happy and healthy.  I hope B is able to make it through the day without hurting himself or another.  I hope those around me hurting know I hurt with them. I hope I've shown them the hope of the LORD. 

At the beginning of the school year, our Superintendent shared with us about a book he was reading called Grit.  I've heard this saying a million times before but I'm so thankful that the LORD let me to write it down this time.  I keep index cards on my desk, right by my computer to remind me of the LORD's promises - saying or verses to inspire me.  I trade them out from time to time but this one has stayed. 

Tough is not a word I'd use to describe myself.  I'm persistent. I'm not tough.  Not traditionally tough.  I don't think anyone would be scared to meet me in a dark alley.  But, I'm learning that I am tough.  I know that I'm not a tough person on my own.  I can't do it under my own strength, the LORD gives me the strength I need.  He also provides an awesome support system for me.  My sweet Ryan who picks up my slack at home. My momma, my sister in law, my biffles, my tribe, my coworkers, the boys' teachers, B's support team and therapist and many others I've failed to mention.  I am blessed beyond measure at the people who come alongside me.   

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Secret Stash by B

He's done it again! B-man has created another board game.  It's called Secret Stash. 

The game lasts 1 minute.  You have to pick a number between 1 and 5 then move that many spaces.  You can earn 'money' or you might have to give it back.  Whoever has the most money at the end of the minute wins. 

Here's the game board

He also created all the game pawns from polymer clay.  The cards in the ziploc are the 'money'. 

Here he is with his creation.  Notice his iPad pulled up to the timer.  The time limit is serious business. 

As you might imagine, he's very good at his own game.  I lost handily. 

Tuesday, November 28, 2017


I also do not think I look old enough to have a 17 year old son, thank you so much for saying so. 

But I do.  My sweet Sambo is 17 today. 

Sam is my gentle giant.  He's tough on the football field but he has a tender heart. 

I am so proud of how hard he works.  I am proud of what a good brother he is.  I'm proud of how caring he is in general.  I am proud of how he's handled tough situations this year.  I am proud of his love for the Lord.  He's a good kid. 

I don't want to go on and on and embarrass him.  I wouldn't tell any embarrassing stories.  I'll tell those in person. 

Here are some of my favorite pictures from this year...

Thursday, November 23, 2017


Happy Thanksgiving!  I hope you are enjoying the day with your family.  I hope you've eaten until you're uncomfortable. I pray you have your best stretchy pants on. 

I want to share some things I'm thankful for today...

My family - Ryan and the boys are the lights of my life.  They make me smile every day and scream only every other day.  My momma, Ryan's momma, my sister, Ryan's brother and sister and their families are very important to me and I'm so glad they are a part of our everyday life.  I'm thankful we all live pretty close together.  I only wish my uncle lived closer.

My friends - I'm blessed to have to 2 sets of wonderful friends.  My 'biffles' here in Sunnyvale get me through my day to day drama.  Need some signs painted for football?  Call the biffles.  Need some wine?  Call the biffles.  Need to vent about your kids?  Text the biffles.  Don't know what to do with those same kids? The biffles know! 

My tribe is my sorority sisters.  We have 2 weekends away each year plus a long weekend in Galveston.  My stress drips off me within minutes of seeing my tribe.  My abs get a good workout from laughing with my girls.  We text each other everyday to check in and keep up with each other.  I love my friends. 

My church - I love that I get to 'work' at our church running our special needs ministry - Valuable.  Our pastors are real people.  They are flawed and working on themselves and that makes me feel like we are all journeying together.  Plus the people I get to work with are amazing.  The ladies that volunteer in the Valuable classes are so dedicated to our kids.  They are patient, kind and loving.  They make my life so much easier.  I also love working with the KidsMin staff.  I believe I'm the oldest but they make me feel young and teach me every time I'm around them.  They've taught me so much about Jesus and how to be more like Jesus. 

My job - I absolutely love my new job! What a blessing it's been to have something new to do this year.  I've made some changes to the middle school library and I think the students love it. I'm really enjoying getting into the librarian groups on Facebook - I've learned so much from them.  Getting to help high school teachers has also been a thrill. I love new challenges!

Books - We are blessed here in America that we are free to read what we want and I try not to take that for granted.  I have to be very disciplined to not add a book to my cart every time I order from Amazon!

You - I'm thankful to have people read my writing.  I appreciate you're encouragement.  I hope I write things worth your time. 

What are you thankful for today?

Wednesday, November 22, 2017


This week is Thanksgiving break. As always, I have a long list of things to do.  This week I'm trying to keep rest as a priority on my to do list. 

I have managed to sleep in for two days.  I may have finally trained B to play in his room and let me sleep in.  I haven't actually napped, which is unusual.  Maybe today.

I've finished reading book, started another, finished editing an article, paid bills, made some t-shirts and written some lessons for church.  It sounds like a lot but it's actually restful for me. 

A friend of mine tweeted a reminder I needed - rest is not the same as idleness.



The biggest thing that stands out from these definitions is "lacking worth" in the idle definition.  What I love about one of the definitions of rest is "peace of mind or spirit".  

I have been at peace of mind and spirit these last two days.  Not that I'm not at peace at work.  It's just different.  At work I never know what's going to happen next, who might need me.  I usually love the unpredictability of my job.  But it's nice to have a break, to be in charge of what I'm going to next.  

That's rest to me. 

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

By B - Update

A couple of weeks ago, B-man hacked my blog and wrote a blog filled with pictures and descriptions of himself.  Y'all loved it! And he loved creating the blog and how much y'all loved it.

B is not a fan of school.  He gets up and goes every day and I think he has a good time there. He FOR SURE loves his teachers.  And they are great teachers.  His support team is also awesome.  I want to be clear that B's dislike for school does not have to do with the people there.  His mind is just on other things.  He wants to start businesses, create video games and learn what he can on TED-ED.

He didn't want to go to school this year.  He wanted to start a bakery.  He also wanted to convince the small church by our schools to let him open the bakery there because "that's a great spot to get a cookie after school".

So, I'm always trying to sneak 3rd grade learning into the things he wants to do.  He can't be a 3rd grade dropout.  There are things he needs to learn to be successful.  Like writing and times tables and spelling.

I'm trying to teach him to type to make some of these things easier.  Handwriting is difficult for B.  And it's hard to read.  I thought typing would be perfect for him.

And what better way to practice typing than blogging!?!

I'm proud to present B's blog:  www.brennanthegreat.blogspot.com

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

A Bold Kid

Earlier this week, B and his classmates went on a field trip as part of their Thirdville study of communities.  As a part of their study, students are elected to Thirdville offices like Town Council, Mayor, School Board and Superintendent.  They go to Town Hall and have a Town Council meeting with some of their real life counter parts.    Then they go to our Administration building to have a School Board meeting in a similar fashion.  

I received pictures of B speaking during the public comments section of each meeting.  At Town Council he gave his opinion about what do to with some park land.  At the School Board meeting he asked how citizens would pay for the increased taxes due to the bond election.  

I'm so proud of B for speaking out but not really that surprised.  He's a bold kid.  He's a smart kid.  He's not shy.  He thinks everyone needs to know what he knows.  

However, one of the social cues he often misses is the fact that not everyone is interested in hearing him.  He loves to share what ever is on his mind.  Not everyone wants to know what's on his mind.  Most people will listen anyway.  Adults are usually impressed.  Kids range from interested to bored, depends on the topic.  Not many people are rude. 

I am so thankful he's so widely accepted and celebrated in our community.  

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

All The Things

Here is an inexhaustive list of things that B would like to do:

  • quit school to open a business
  • open a bakery
  • make candy
  • be a pet sitter
  • build a pet park
  • make dinner
  • go to mini camp
  • leave mini camp within an hour of arrival
  • put up his Christmas tree
  • get a pet - a bearded dragon or guinea pig
  • text family and friends
  • talk endlessly about these things
  • accept no help

As I said, this list is not exhaustive but I am exhausted.  Also, I'm irritated.  I'm out of margin for his plans. 

And I hate that. 

I love being B's momma.  But I can't keep up. I don't want him to stop having big ideas and dreams. I don't want to squelch his spirit.  How do I avoid that without exhausting myself? 

I try to balance it out. Sometimes I say 'yes' even when I know it's going to be a mess.  Sometimes I tell him we'll talk about it later.  He's getting wise to that though.  I try to explain that there are just some rules you can't break, like quitting school in 3rd grade. 

So, I guess I'll go to bed early, again tonight (thank you Ryan) and get it up and do it all again tomorrow. 

Thursday, November 9, 2017


I had a work event last night.  When I dressed in the morning, I picked some cute boots.  By 8 pm I was ready to break up with those boots.  

As I've gotten older, I decided that I'm not wearing uncomfortable clothes.  I'd love for that to mean that I wear pajama pants and oversized t-shirts all the time.  No such luck! What it does mean that if something pinches or pulls or itches it's gone.  I tend to shop for clothes based on touch.  If it doesn't feel good, I don't spend my money.  

Clothes have come a long way. I can still look semi-fashionable in my non-binding clothing.  

Shoes are way behind.  

Actually, let me say that another way...shoes that I'm willing to pay for are behind.  I'd like to think that super expensive shoes are way more comfortable but I may never know.  

I like fun shoes.  I love Chucks and Toms.  I love flip flops.  I love not so cute Birkenstocks.  I love Nike and Adidas.  I have lots of shoes.  I have shoes that I can't part with. I keep thinking they are going to magically stop hurting. I'm always hopeful.   

I really want to love high heels.  But good gravy they hurt! And I can't take it.  

Life is too short.  There are lots of things that are going to make you uncomfortable.  It's called productive struggle.  It's important.  It builds character.  

I can find no character building benefits to wearing shoes that hurt my feet.  So, I think I'll stop.  

Right after my nephew's wedding this weekend.  I've got a killer dress that's gonna require some killer shoes.   

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

B after dark

When we get home each afternoon, B almost always goes to his room for 'privacy' or 'alone' time.  He uses that time to decompress.  By the time he's ready to come to the living room, I'm usually engaged in something else. 

With the older boys, I always had them do their homework as soon as school was out.  Especially in the early days of homework, they were able to do their homework almost immediately after school. They would come to my classroom and get to work.  I also had a great carrot - my classroom was the computer lab.  When they finished, they could play computer games. 

B's school gets out way after mine so by the time he gets to me, I'm ready to go home.  Many days I meet him in the parking lot and go home. 

All that to say, I haven't been great about doing homework or extra work with B.  He hasn't been great either.  Lots of times he's all used up.  He's worked hard all day to hold it together that he can't do any more.  We have had some epic meltdowns around homework.  Thankfully, he hasn't had a lot of homework and he still doesn't. 

But the time has come for B to do some work at home.  He needs to work on his addition and multiplication facts and his spelling.  Not traditional homework but extra practice.

He was not excited.  So, we worked up a system.  He still gets his alone time as soon as we get home.  Then at 7:40, we work in 5 minute increments.  5 minutes on addition, 5 minutes on multiplication, 5 minutes on spelling.  Each thing might take more than 5 minutes but he likes to think there's a time limit. 

I found B an app that would review both addition and multiplication.  I thought he'd be super excited about that.  Wrong! "I want paper.  I don't want a machine to teach me."  So, I found a website to print worksheets for him. 

So far so good. 

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

By b

Sunday night on the way home from family dinner, B made a confession:

B: I made a blog today
Me: Oh yeah, how did you do that?
B: on your blog?
Me: you posted something on my blog?  How did you do that?
B: yes, on my iPad

Apparently, I was logged into my blog on his iPad and he decided to write a blog.  So here it is, I didn't change a thing.  Just added these words.  He calls it memories...

Hi I'm b(the son of aimee bartis)

#dog lover

Not all teaxen
True belever

 All hallowz eve and scoll! hi yay!

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Burdens become Blessings

This past Sunday, before B's baptism, our Pastor preached on Isaiah 43:16-19

Isaiah 43:16-19 www.biblegateway.com

Isaiah is reminding the people of everything GOD had done for them in the past in verse 16-17.  Then in verses 18 and 19 he tells them to forget all of that because GOD is doing a new thing. 

He is making a way in the wilderness.  He is making rivers in the desert. 

The wilderness.

The desert.

Not really fun places.  Not really hot vacation spots. 

But, it's where GOD is working. 

Pastor Paul said it best, it's where "burdens become blessings". 

I immediately thought of B's autism.  I decided that B was autistic way before he was diagnosed.  I had picked him up from pre-k and he was playing on a swing.  He didn't want to leave.  He cried the whole way home (about 20 minutes). I sent him to his room to cry.  He fell asleep. I remember sitting on his bed and praying over him.  He woke up while I sat there.  I thought, oh good, we're all done.  Nope.  He started crying about swinging again.  He was stuck.  It was all he could think about. 

I had been reading something about autism (I read so much at that point that it all runs together) that helped me formulate a theory about B's mind. It's like an old vinyl record.  It's spinning really fast.  And sometimes the needle get stuck.  He needs help moving the needle. 

Around this time I saw a quote that said autism isn't a defective mind, it's a whole different operating system.  That helped me as well.  I came to understand that B is just different.  Not bad.  Just different.  Different challenges.  Different triumphs. 

GOD has brought some many blessings to our family and others through B.  He has truly done a new thing through him.  But, He had to change my mind about the desert.  When I changed how I thought about autism, I could see and unleash the blessings of B. 

And I'm so thankful for that!

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Halloween, 2017

Can I be honest with you?  I usually love Halloween but I was just not feeling it this year.  Ryan's sick and I didn't feel my best.  It was cold and rainy.  But, B-man would not be deterred.  I tried.  I showed him the 2 giant bags of candy we bought at Sam's Club.  I promised him a lot of it if we could just stay home.  He wasn't having it.

B chose his costume several weeks ago.  He wanted to be the Headless Horseman.  My sainted mother ordered it from Amazon so I didn't have to brave anyone's costume aisle.  Thank you, Momma!

When the costume arrived we tried it on and B had a full out panic attack. The mask goes completely over his face and then the cape thingy comes up over that. No part of his face or head are showing.  So, you can see why I thought he could be bribed into staying home. 

At school they could buy a ticket to wear a costume.  He was so excited to pay for this out of his own money.  However, the note said "no blood or masks".  Ummmm, brother you're costume is bloody and a big ol' mask.  What are you going to do?  Momma, you're going to make me a spider costume.  So I did. 

After a lot of deep breathing (and a small hole cut out for breathing), B got into his Headless Horseman costume and we met some friends in the neighborhood. 

As you can see the full on mask didn't last long.

Thankfully, it wasn't raining.  Also, thankfully, B was done after a few houses. 

I'm glad we went.  I'm equally glad we got home early so I could go to bed.  #badmom

Tuesday, October 31, 2017


Or Bap-ba-tism as B-man would say.

Sunday was the big day! B was baptized! Back in August I wrote about B getting saved/accepting Jesus as his Savior.  As a Christians, we believe that the next step is to publicly declare that we've accepted Jesus and the way to do that is through Baptism.

B has been looking forward to this day for a while.  Ryan & I have been trying to figure out how to make sure things would go off without a meltdown.  Ryan had the great idea of having him wear a swim mask so that he didn't get upset when the water got on his face.  I did my best to walk him through what would happen.  We decided that I would walk up with B and stand nearby in case of emergency.

Saturday night B stayed the night with Nene.  He told her he needed to go to bed at 7:30 so he'd be in a good mood for his big day.  Sunday morning he was "both excited and nervous".  At church, he got a shirt and he got to write how accepting Jesus and baptism made him feel. First he wrote this:

Then he added to it:

Pastor Joe talked to B, and the others who were getting baptized, and cracked a joke.  He said families could pay him to hold you under longer then you could pay more than your family to go under a shorter amount of time.  B's hand shot up.  "Does the amount of time you're under equal how much you love God?"  Joe assured him that it did not!  If it did, I'm sure B would have opted to stay under as long as possible! Baptism was at the end of the service.  B waited patiently, although he did need to use the restroom a lot...

Finally, the time came!  Watch until the end! 

We have such a strong group of friends.  One of the daughters of another family in our group was baptized right after B, along with her aunt! So we had a great group of friends come celebrate with us.  B was on Cloud 9.  He told me about 10 times that this was the best day ever! 

I'd have to agree! It was a great day.  A day I wasn't sure we'd see for B.  Back when he was non-verbal, I didn't know if he'd say anything.  Much less make a profession of faith.  I didn't like that possibility but I know that God has a plan to bring all men to Himself so I knew He had a plan for non-verbal people.  As I learned more about autism, I became more worried.  Many autistic people are black and white. There's not a lot of grey area.  Things must be seen to be believed.  Christianity is just not like that.  Faith isn't like that.  I worried that B would not be able to understand and accept something so abstract.  I'm so thankful that God answered my prayers.  

Here are some other pictures from B's big day, thanks to a sweet friend! 
Waiting his turn. 

Praying afterwards!


 I made a cake for our family dinner Sunday night.  B decorated it: Happy Baptism To Me