Thursday, April 30, 2009

Somebody's Praying Me Through...

I'm fine - just busy... And I have had unusual patience the last couple of weeks.

Usually, after "episodes", I am pretty kinda whacked-out for a while, depending on the severity of the episode... or I need time to recuperate myself... but - both last week and this week, I've not needed those times. OH! Oh - no, don't get me wrong... Nick is still being Nick, but - it's just not affecting me like it usually does, which is good. Better than good! ((smile))

Yes - I do believe someone is praying for me. And guess what that does to me?

It makes me want to pray for those who need my prayers, and for those who don't. I do have times where I not only want to pray, but - I HAVE TO pray. Just hafta pray sometimes...

If someone comes to your mind today, would you pray for them?

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Fatty Acids for Brain Health

I am crazy busy. Homeschool, spring cleaning, getting ready for a garage sale, clients and volunteering... I have to try to enjoy these times and I keep telling myself "gotta love it!". The only other alternative is to go crazy. So - I'm lovin' it.

I have orders coming in all week from Vitacost and Kirkman. That's kind of exciting, actually when I consider that without supplements, I wouldn't have half of the son that I have. What I mean to say is that the supplements help him more than I ever thought they would.

I switch supplements often, as I am continually "tweaking" Nick's diet and fine tuning his recovery. One product I am thankful for that is organic, GF-CF, sugar free and tastes good, in particular, is Nick's Barlean's Organic Omega Swirl. The kids call it "lemon pudding". It's good. In fact, it's better than good and tastes exactly like my grandmother's lemon meringue pie. No - not kidding.

Nick can't swallow pills/capsules, so if he is willing to take the lemon pudding, I am willing to give it daily! It is rich in vital and essential Omega-3 fatty acids, which, if you recall - are necessary for healthy brain function.

Here's what their website says:

Packed with essential Omega-3s, Omega Swirl was created to nutritionally support:
  • Heart Health* (Gotta take care of the ticker - right?)
  • Healthy Cholesterol Levels* (Had them tested lately?)
  • Joint Mobility & Bone Density* (Very, very important...)
  • Energy & Endurance* (To put up with screaming kids...)
  • Skin, Hair & Nail Health* (Yes, even though it may not look like it, I do color my hair monthly!)
  • Mental Health, Wellness and Acuity* (Save what's left...)
  • Healthy Blood Glucose* (To avoid those cravings for something like cheesecake or pecan pie, perhaps?)
  • Sexual & Hormonal Health (Hugh?)

Saturday, April 25, 2009

I haven't slept well since reading this

I know, I know... I am supposed to try to keep things positive. That was one of the original reasons that I started to blog. There's just so much going on in my head that I need to get it out - well, sorta.

I have asked and asked and asked if Nick's dental work could have anything -- I mean anything at all to do with the onset of his condition... and every time the answer has been "no". No, dental work could not have brought his condition out. Nope.

Nicolas was a 30 week preemie and (before he was even full-term), he was given 5 shots the day he was released from the NICU in 2001. The shots did, in fact, have thimerosol in them. Poor baby... And, I have wondered and wondered if his 4 fillings and one silver crown could have had anything at all to do with mercury or with his ability to handle it and again... I was told "no". I am still told NO.

I just accept the little pat on my over-worried mother head and go in search of the next dentist to bother. Same response. Fillings are completely safe. (Gag...)

So, why then do (my memories) the thoughts of Nick's dental procedures keep coming back into my mind? He had the dental work and then, starting having behavior issues. Am I so desperate for a "cause" to his condition that I keep searching? No. I do not believe it was just one thing. Don't fight me on this one. I can feel my "instinct" rising... and, I am the parent of a little 7-year-old boy who wasn't always like this. Parents know their children. I know my child. Remember, Nicolas did not show any symptoms of ASD until after the age of 4. The only symptoms he showed prior was that he did not like the texture of some foods and he hated strong, chlorinated city water. And, I don't know if I can even call those "autism symptoms"... good grief. We have always had reverse osmosis water and I hate city water too. It's disgusting...Grrr...

Anyway, if you're in a less-than-optimistic mood, you may want to consider leaving this post and not reading the rest. I will honestly tell you that I was pretty teary eyed after reading this article at the Autism Research Institute (ARI) regarding fillings. I haven't slept well since.

I will post something positive next week. Maybe I'll show you the latest addition to our family. He's pretty cute!


Recommendations for Safe Dental Care

On June 12th, 2008, the FDA finally admitted on its website that silver fillings in our teeth are toxic and harmful to our health, and that they "may have neuro-toxic effects on the nervous systems of developing children and fetuses."

ARI asked Dr. Donald Robbins for his recommendations for safe dentistry.

Dr. Donald Robbins, DMD

"While most of us are aware of mercury exposure from dental amalgam fillings, many are not aware that about half the dentists in the United States still use them. For most people, concern ends there, because most people are not aware of exposure to other toxins caused by simply walking into an average dental office.

Let’s explore what kinds of chemicals are used--and not controlled--in these offices. For instance, a dental office might advertise proudly that they do not use mercury dental fillings, but instead replace old silver fillings with the newest white bonded ones, while they in fact are exposing their patients, their staff, and themselves to mercury vapor in their office every minute. Mercury vapor is released in extremely high concentrations when the silver filling is heated incidentally during the drilling procedure. Unless specific precautions are taken to control the mercury vapor released every time an old “silver” filling is drilled out, that vapor is contaminating everything in the office. In addition to the vapor, minute toxic particles are sprayed into the air during filling removal."

(This is from the end of his article...)

"Remember, mercury can have serious negative short-term impact on your health. People who cannot excrete mercury efficiently (like young children with ASDs from thimerosal in vaccines, or from another source of mercury) are at a higher risk for bad reactions. But mercury also has insidious long-term effects that progress slowly, such as Alzheimer’s disease or cardiovascular damage. Children who already have been injured by mercury exposure have demonstrated an inability to adequately excrete this metal. Any small addition of mercury will have a magnified effect, and may cause a relapse of negative health symptoms.

You must take control of your health decisions. Know the facts, and know about the treatment practices of any medical or dental office you use."

And, of course Dr. Mercola has something similar to say. Why didn't I see this before?

Just How Much Mercury Do These Fillings Release?

"Remember, any kind of stimulation can cause these fillings to release mercury. Eating, drinking, brushing your teeth, grinding your teeth, chewing gum, anything. If you want to see the vapors released for yourself, watch this shocking video.

Mercury vapor from the amalgams passes readily through cell membranes, across the blood-brain barrier, and into your central nervous system, where it causes psychological, neurological, and immunological problems.

For an interesting comparison, consider that scientists recently made a wise warning about eating mercury-contaminated seafood. Well, eating such seafood will expose you to about 2.3 micrograms of mercury a day. A single dental amalgam filling, meanwhile, releases as much as 15 micrograms of mercury per day.

But that’s not all. The average person has eight amalgam fillings and could absorb up to 120 micrograms of mercury per day. Clearly this is cause for urgent action to be taken. I was NO different. I had 16 fillings by the time I was in college.

What to Do if You Have Mercury Fillings

I do not believe that pregnant women and children are the only ones who need to worry about the mercury in silver dental fillings. I highly suggest that if you need to get a filling, you see a biological dentist who can recommend a truly inert material that will not harm your health.

I also recommend that you have any existing amalgam fillings removed … but avoid making the mistake I did 20 years ago by having it done by a non-biological dentist. You see, when you have these fillings removed you can be exposed to significant amounts of mercury vapors if the dentist doesn’t know what he or she is doing.

Although they may be more than technically competent and one of the most skilled dentists the earth has ever seen, if they haven’t received training in how to remove mercury safely let me strongly assure you they will harm you.

My mercury exposure from having this done improperly nearly caused me to lose both my kidneys and go on dialysis. Fortunately, I have access to some of the best medical minds on the planet and I was able to have the problem reversed.

For this reason, I suggest you get healthy BEFORE having your fillings removed, as you want your detoxification mechanisms optimized prior to removal.

Once you’re ready to go ahead with it, I’d say only about 5 percent of dentists know how to remove these fillings safely, so do your research and seek out a highly qualified biological dentist. Some things that need to be done to keep you (and your dentist) safe during the procedure include:
  • Providing you with an alternative air source and instructing you not to breath through your mouth
  • Using a cold-water spray to minimize mercury vapors
  • Putting a rubber dam in your mouth so you don’t swallow or inhale any toxins
  • Using a high-volume evacuator near the tooth at all times to evacuate the mercury vapor
  • Washing your mouth out immediately after the fillings have been removed (the dentist should also change gloves after the removal)
  • Immediately cleaning your protective wear and face once the fillings are removed
  • Using room air purifiers"
I find myself muttering a familiar phrase: "I didn't know... I just didn't know."

Thursday, April 23, 2009

My Latest Craze

I got a new book from the library a few weeks ago. It's different from any of the other GF-CF cookbooks that I've read... and - I keep picking up this book and re-reading the parts about enzymes and raw/whole foods. I've never really considered this intensive way of thinking about food and environmental factors...

Mother Necessity Gluten Free/Casein Free Recipes
Your “Favorite Foods” Allergen Free.
Whole Food, Organic, Gluten Free/Casein Free Recipes – Free of Common Allergens

Discover how you can create healthy, easy-to-make meals, that utilize whole food cooking and raw food preparation.

The book is called Mother Necessity and here's a link to read about how this woman - the author, recovered her son from autism. It's amazing!

"Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS). This is now a part of his Educational Plan at school which protects him from chemicals and toxins which can overburden his system. We have come to understand that Dylan’s overburdened detoxification system and his inability to process and eliminate chemicals and toxins was the underlying cause of his autism, neurological dysfunction, impaired intestinal function and chronic health problems. A study conducted by the Environmental Working Group tested the umbilical cord blood of ten children and found 287 industrial chemicals and pollutants in each cord. Many children being born today do not have the tolerance level or the immune defenses that previous generations once did. Studies have shown that the damaging effects of toxic exposures may surface two or three generations later, leaving children more vulnerable to the harmful effects of chemicals and toxins found in vaccinations, medications, new building materials, personal care products, cleaners, and foods."

I am going to try some of her recipes and look further at some of her experiences. I'll keep you posted.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Well Said - Mr. Carrey!

Famous Hollywood actor Jim Carrey impressed me this morning over on the Huff Post. Well said, Mr. Carry. Well said...

While you go check his article out, I am going to work on fine tuning Nick's penmanship! And since I am mentioning it, here's the book we go back to when Nicolas starts getting a little "sloppy": It's from the Handwriting Without Tears series and is called Printing Power. It's inexpensive and it gets the job done.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Walking the Walk vs. Talking the Talk

So much of what I do on a daily basis involves activities that either prevent reactions to Nick or promote the healing of Nick's "condition". We want to prevent any more damage to his body, his gut, his brain, immune system, etc. - and promote recovery. That's where we are right now.

By reading labels, I can prevent him from ingesting additives that aren't good for his brain. I pick up an item, read the label, see something that's on our forbidden list and say, "No, can't have this." Focusing on the negative. I find it effortless -- some days, to speak negative. Why is that? I hate it. I can easily relate to what the apostle Paul write about in Romans 7:
"I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it."

This is also where I need to talk the talk and not just walk the walk. Sure, I am loving and caring for my child by accommodating his needs and buying, cooking and feeding him special food, but - what comes out of my mouth oftentimes speaks louder than my actions. "Don't just leave all this stuff out!" "Nicolas - what did you do?" "Put these things away now!" And other words of loveliness :

You can't...
You shouldn't...
You this or that...

It can be very discouraging for both Nick to hear and for me, to hear myself say -- especially if I just spent the last 3 days cleaning up a mess from the last play time, search for a lost toy, etc. Discouraged or not, my kids hear what I say and see what I do.

It's not just toys and messiness. It's his forgetfulness and his poor little boy brain... Or losing his shoes, hat, coat, mittens, etc. It's standing up and eating, which is so incredibly messy. (We work on manners each and every day. Every day... Every single day.) Reminding him to do simple things that are a part of our routine - but, none the less, I have to remind him multiple times a day, each and every day. I am literally a copy of the day before. I know, all this could sound like a lot of kids; but - it's my kid. And I love him, but - he's not the same kid anymore.

So, I get tired and frustrated. I work from home and wouldn't you think that I could find a few hours a day just to get a little work done? Sometimes I do. Most times I stay up late, after everyone is in bed, and work into the morning, if necessary. This then makes me grumpy and tired. And the day begins regardless of how much or how little sleep I've had, and it all happens all over gain, except that there are a few twists here and there. Dogs, kids, meals, dishes, laundry - normal stuff gets thrown in and then... oh yes, we have home school in there.

Homeschooling is incredible and I am thankful each and every day that we can do it. Saying something positive about homeschooling in front of my kids can bring them life. I see it happen - they blossom.

In sharing all of this, I am also admitting that I am but a mere mortal mom who gets tired without a cup of coffee in her hands. I also admit that without some help, I would never be able to do this. My help comes from another dimension. From another realm... from God. He is the only One who can renew me, when coffee and chocolate don't do the trick.

To get renewed, I do several things as much as I possibly can. I spend time with God, meditating on His Word by reading the Bible. I also participate in times of singing to Him, as in corporate worship and in several prayer groups. Praying for others is something I feel the need to do, much like how Nicolas has the need to build. By focusing on The Creator, it gets my eyes off myself, my situations, struggles and problems and gets them (my eyes, thoughts) to think "outside my box" and get a bigger picture of life and for others. Yes others. Other people also have "stuff and junk" going on in their lives. I make it a priority to pray for other people and their situations too. I know that if someone tells me that they've been praying for me, I am never burdened or overwhelmed by prayer.

I lift up my eyes to the hills—
where does my help come from?

My help comes from the LORD,
the Maker of heaven and earth.

He will not let your foot slip—
he who watches over you will not slumber;

indeed, he who watches over Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.

The LORD watches over you—
the LORD is your shade at your right hand;

the sun will not harm you by day,
nor the moon by night.

The LORD will keep you from all harm—
he will watch over your life;

the LORD will watch over your coming and going
both now and forevermore.

~Psalm 121

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Cool Volcom T-Shirt Supports TACA

Last year, when I first started to investigate Nick's condition and was in the mode of "what-in-the-world has happened to my son", I ended up at a website called TACA, which stands for Talk About Curing Autism. Eventually, I bookmarked them, because I would land there anyway and I was getting some helpful information there as well.

The following is from their home page:

Talk About Curing Autism (TACA) provides information, resources, and support to families affected by autism. For families who have just received the autism diagnosis, TACA aims to speed up the cycle time from the autism diagnosis to effective treatments. TACA helps to strengthen the autism community by connecting families and the professionals who can help them, allowing them to share stories and information to help people with autism be the best they can be.

When I meet people who wonder about how they are going to survive a diagnosis or the label of "autism", I send them to TACA and to Generation Rescue. Both websites offer many helpful resources!
Our oldest son will be 21 next month... and he likes nice clothing, and - he has bright blue eyes and is a fan of board sports. Wanna see what he's getting for his birthday? (It's a t-shirt.) Keeping the tradition of adding to his t-shirt collection, I was really happy to see a cool t-shirt come out from a boarding company that will support TACA with its sales. Cool - hey? Here's the info about the new t from TACA.

Volcom partners with TACA for Autism Awareness Month with a new t-shirt!

The Volcom TACA “T” comes in four colors, hosts the TACA name and inspiring hang tag to educate people about autism.

The message being sent on autism is about HOPE!

Here's the one Andrew is getting:

Hope is a belief in a positive outcome related to events and circumstances in ones life. Hope is about believing that a better or positive outcome is possible.

Thanks for supporting TACA and helping us make a difference toward fighting autism. A portion of the proceeds will go to TACA – for more information go to

TACA will receive a $1 for each t-shirt sold. TACA supporters can also purchase t-shirts online. As of 4/1/09, the shirts are online at:

(Note: TACA is not selling the Volcom TACA Ts. Please support Amazon, PacSun, Surfside & Tillys by acquiring yours today!)

Friday, April 10, 2009

Fearfully & Wonderfully Made

As hard as I try, I just can't eat perfectly. Not yet anyway. I still sneak once in a while, but - I am free of headaches and migraines when I stay away from ALL forms of MSG and most sweeteners.

I know that I spend a lot of time squawking about bad ingredients and awful additives... and it's true. Many additives are not good for us and I believe that once we have the knowledge about a particular additive, we need to apply that knowledge and care for our bodies by either avoiding it, or limiting our intake... especially if we are healing or recovering. Remember, I am the one living with "Nicolas the Unpredictable" and helping to heal him. There's nothing worse than trying to function in a foggy, exhausted or lethargic state.

If you've ever had surgery and been on some of the stronger narcotics for an extended period of time, you know what I mean. Or - it you've ever taken too much allergy medicine, oh - yuck, isn't that just the worst? And, if you've ever been hung-over... ew, that weak, dopey feeling... And, it takes a some time to get back to normal after our alternate state, even if just temporary. Getting adequate rest, proper nutrients and hydration are so important when regaining strength, recovering, healing and preventing the undesired state from happening again. So, we quit taking our pain pills and antihistamines and lay off the booze. (Smile...) Then, in time, we do eventually go back to our former state of being balanced, healthy and feeling good... and all is well once again.

Same holds true for those of us who are recovering our kids. It takes time. I have to be patient... although, I would accept a divine supernatural healing for Nicolas -- absolutely!

I am so thankful that God created us with a liver and kidneys. The more I learn about how Nick's digestion, metabolism, immune system and other bodily systems function -- and how his little boy brain functions, the more I am convinced that we are fearfully and wonderfully made. I get a little sad from time to time, thinking that it's not fair that our kids (that are in the spectrum) have to go through what they have to go through... but - there is no fair. No guarantee of fairness; only the guarantee that if we are born, we will die. I am not morbid or painting a sad picture; It's true and it is reality. Still... I am filled with awe at just how awesome our bodies are. And I know there is Someone who knows Nicolas better than I do and who loves him more than I do... but - I can't imagine it. I can't imagine it because I am human and can only love as a human being can. I am reminded that although I wish I were "Super Mom", I am but a mere moral warrior mom... fighting ASD's. But - I believe that what the Bible says is true and that means I have hope. A lot of hope, regardless of what I see.

To you, O Lord, I life my soul

In you, O God, I place my trust

Do not let me be put to shame

Nor let my enemies triumph over me

My hope is you

Show me your ways

Guide me in truth

In all my days

My hope is you

Taken from Psalm 31...

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

I Can't and Won't Give Up Coffee... Yet

I love coffee. The smell, the temperature and the taste = yum.

There's nothing like a great cup of coffee to put me in a good mood and help this mother get in gear. The opposite is true about a nasty tasting cup of coffee. Yuck... then watch out!

When Hubs and I married, I was delighted to inherit his coffee bean grinder. It still works today. Good 'ol Krups... just keeps right on grinding for me each and every morning.

So... it never occurred to me to read my coffee creamer labels until just recently. I'd like to just hang and shake my head... it's true. My creamer has a forbidden additive! Darn... (I don't swear...)

The evil ingredient?


Odd looking word, isn't it. Does make it easy to see on the labels, when it's not disguised or hidden.

Here's an easy-to-read page about this nasty additive. Oh - and I can't forget this one either -- this is a posting (at WiseGeek) of people who are allergic or sensitive to it and how they found out, including their symptoms. Wow! VERY informative. Please go read about this nasty excitotoxin. Yeah - it's friends with MSG and Aspartame.

Back to my coffee!

It's ok. I mean that I am ok... I used some of Olivia's $6/gallon, organic white 1% milk from Sassy Cow. It's almost like cream. But, no flavor...

Wait! My day only got better!

Chrissy over at Spectrum Hope's blog, posted none other than a recipe for non-dairy creamer today. No kidding. Hey - God is good and He cares about my taste buds, my love (and need) for coffee and for my creamer.

Go check out her yummy recipe for home made coffee creamer. Or come on over this week, and have some with me! Any day but Thursday, as we have an appt. with Nick's DAN! doctor, far away. Long drive - but you know I'll take my own coffee and new creamer with me! Neat - hugh? Gotta rejoice in all the little things... with a thankful heart.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Parents + Kids = Love & Commitment

Just in case you didn't need a tissue for that, watch this. It encourages me to know that there are so many of us out there -- parents who are committed to and who believe in their children.


“Correction does much, but encouragement does more.”
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Friday, April 3, 2009

Ways We Heal

I recently posted about Sodium Laurel Sulfate in Created Chaos. I was correct in my assumption that it is a very unwanted "drug" in many of our shampoos and cosmetics. It is a drug. The FDA considers it a drug - and it's not good. I've banned it from our home. Like most things, we simply do not continue to purchase products with the formerly accepted additives or ingredients in them, such as MSG, fluoride and now, sodium laurel sulfate. Yes, it's that serious. Remember, we are healing Nicolas and preventing and preserving Olivia's health (conditions).

This is just one of the many things we are changing in our home; things that we were not aware of, until Nick's "situation" occurred. Other things that we've either changed or added to our personal health care are: specific supplementation (and tweaking, increasing and adjusting as needed), removing artificial additives from our diets; further removal of toxins and allergens from within out home; continued chiropractic care and continued homeopathy; essential oils for treatment and prevention in healthcare. In fact, my friend - Lisa, from Pockets of Time - who uses titanium cookware (I didn't even know that titanium pots and pans existed!) that she sells, and who just sold me some fluoride free toothpaste too, is an oil lady.

I can't hear myself saying, "Hi, I am an oil lady." No - Lisa has never said that either. She's too calm, cool and collected... Unlike what I would say... I can hear myself say something like... "Hi - I don't have enough common sense to go to bed at night". But - then again, I never thought I would homeschool or have a "special" child and I never thought that immunizations were anything but good and beneficial. And I never thought I would have gray hair... or a million other things. Back to Lisa. I like her. She's sweet, pretty, has a cool new hairdo and she's not like me - she's quiet and so are her kids. She lives on a different planet than I do, one with white carpeting! Anyway, I checked out one of the blogs she follows and that's how I stay up all night... but - I like a good read and making new friends... one of whom just happens to be having a giveaway contest over at Oils for Wellness. The "joy thing" is going on over there... I think I need a hottub full of joy though!

I recently went to a local Consumer Pharmacy to check out their shampoos. The employee who helped me only recommended one product, out of the dozens of different brands. It was a shampoo bar. I took a sample from her and left. I have kids; I prefer to NOT use a bar for shampoo... am I being overly fussy? Maybe. I will try the bar. If I don't like it, I know that I can easily find personal care products elsewhere and I won't have to drive 20 miles, find a sitter, pay for parking and come home empty handed... It's often easier (less time and stress) to just order online.

As usual, Kirkman has the hypoallergenic products that I need. Kirkman also has an informative page about the various additives and ingredients in our personal care products. As usual, I am going to refer you over there. Hey - why should I re-type all the information? They've done all the work - go check it out for yourself and then read your shampoo bottle again, if you haven't already!

Good-bye - Laurel. I never want to see you again in our home!

For wisdom is protection just as money is protection, But the advantage of knowledge is that wisdom preserves the lives of its possessors.
~Ecclesiastes 7:12