Friday, March 19, 2010

Asperger's Syndrome or is it high functioning autism??

Things that can be good about autism

We never need another address book because our son knows everyone's address by heart

My son has a truly photographic memory - seeing the whole page or picture in his head.

My son's autism forces me to see the world differently - more literally, more comparatively

I know if I make chicken nuggets they will always be eaten

Obsessions which lead to knowledge: learning about every bird in the Audubon books, remembering every word Steve Irwin ever said, teaching me about baseball statistics, knowing the name of every dog within a two mile radius of home!

Things that stink about autism: 

Melt Downs - no two ways about it, these are the worst.  Especially the self-injurious ones which spiral from yelling, to swearing, to hitting himself, to hitting his sister, to hitting me

My son's great desire to be on a team (good) but his inability to cope with the stress and confusion of meets or invitationals

The abject fear that occurs when new things happen, or  are anticipated. 

The complete obsession with how much homework might be assigned getting in the way of school work and participation in class

Never knowing if ANYONE will say yes to a birthday invitation - last year only two did

Watching his world grow smaller and tighter and not knowing what to do to stop this

Spring's a'comin'

   I know we are getting rain in a couple of days, but what a treat to have an entire week of warm sunny weather - our town in the cloudiest place I have ever lived. That is saying a lot since I spent a year in England in the midlands.
    I was watching the bees this afternoon.  Some of them are coming into the hive with their pollen baskets full.  I know this is not enough for them to survive on, but more than enough to stimulate the queen and get her to start laying.  My big question is this: what is blooming?  None of the trees are in bud here.  The daffodils and lilies are just starting to poke their green heads out of the loam.  Where are the bees getting this pollen?  Maybe there are some evergreens in bloom somewhere.  Hmmmm...

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Fiber festivals

I want to go to this sheep festival.

I may very possibly go to this one - having family in CT means free overnights!

Of course, if I could somehow manage to write a grant that made this seem academic, I would be here in a heartbeat!

Or this one!  Tuscany in autumn - I would love to be there.

Imagine all the possibilities!

The Urge to Purge

   Perhaps it is just Spring.  Maybe it is reading a colleague's blog about not being sentimental and saving things.  Maybe it is that I am just tired of tripping as I walk through the house, but the time has come to purge.  I mean really purge.  I want a full sized, "have to haul it away on an eighteen wheeler" dumpster so I can get rid of the clothing that doesn't fit, but I keep convincing myself I will get back into.  I want to ditch the baby toys which are plastic, worn and well drooled on.  I want to get rid of the really BAD children's books (and there are many) that well meaning people bought and we never read!  I want to throw out the half dead houseplants that, regardless of how green my thumb is, will never get enough light in this house to grow!   Washing curtains, beating rugs - all these cathartic activities are typical of Spring cleaning - and I want to do them all.   
    It may be a busy weekend.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Knee deep in rubber bats

    We are currently doing Bat Boy: the Musical at our college.This is based on, or rather, inspired by the Weekly World News story about a bat boy living in WV.  The picture above ran along with the article.  Totally tongue in cheek, it is a lot of fun.
     I am designing the costumes and am finding that the scenes which are the shortest are requiring the most work.  Example: a two minute song called Children, Children is becoming a HUGE animal body puppet number with an owl, a squirrel, a lynx, some butterflies, a deer, a bear, a wolf, and - I kid you not - a moose.  Our scenic designer has taken these over by turning their construction into a workshop on this type of puppet/costume. She is marvelous with this type of thing, and the students are getting a lot out of it. 
    Second example:  A scene in which a character is recalling her rape by a flock of bats (don't ask, just come see the show) and I must create a bat covered dress which she can slip into by running behind a rock and then running back on.  She runs around in it and screams, and runs off.  For this I am ordering 50, count 'em, 50 rubber bats in two different sizes. 
    Finding bats this time of year is tricky.  Most on-line dealers are out of stock - why should they carry dozens of bats when it is Easter Bunny time?? I do not blame them.  Finally, after hours of searching, a link lead to a link which lead to a link and I found them.  So patronize Century in MI if you are in the market for off season bats!