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S.M.A.A.R.T.Moms DON'T Just Roar....

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Saturday, December 17, 2011

"Teaching Autism with Tiles?" Video :S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom's December "Online Mommy & ME Time-Out"

A Unique Way to Teach Your Child/Teen with Autism. "THINK-IT-THROUGH TILES"
Well here we are in December, wrapping up another year and beginning our new year and  adventure in autism.
I'm always looking for toys that will be beneficial to Dustin. I do buy him those typical toys on occasion,
however, when it's Christmas time I want to find more toys that are going to help Boo Bear and not end
up on the floor for me to step on. So here is something I just had to share with you.

Getting Dustin to sit and focus while trying to teach is very difficult. Anyone with a child or teen with autism I'm sure would agree. Well, I found a Tile Case with interacting Booklets called "Think-It-Through Tiles". They absolutley impressed me. I tried the Tiles with Dustin and he caught on immediately. He stayed focused and challenged at the same time. The tiles are hands on and Range from K-12 grades. Teaches everything including science and life skills in some booklets. I wish I would have found out about the Tiles a long time ago:) What a Wonderful Teaching Tool! Won't it be nice to buy a Christmas gift that is beneficial for  your son or daughter with autism ?
I've found them at a few different sites but just couldn't see paying the price I found them at. So again, back to
ebay. At least there I could get the tiles much cheaper through auctions. I did buy some booklets at  http://www.discoverytoys.com/web/guest/home 
just because I wanted particular learning booklets. I believe Amazon had them too, but ebay I found to be the best
place to shop for the tiles & booklets. What's really nice is these lessons will grow with your child. It's a Great Investment
when coming to you son/ daughter's academics. My son uses these every day in his daily schedule. I can't express to you
how much he has learned from the tiles. I really encourage my moms to check into the tiles. I truly hope they will help you
like they've helped Dustin. Merry Christmas to all of my S.M.A.A.R.T.Moms! I sure hope to see some of you next month
for January's Mommy Time-Out. Go to my site and look to the right for the Date,Time, and Meeting Place.
Until Then........Take Care! Angela (Creator of S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom)

(Click-On Picture to watch Dec. Mommy Time-Out Online Video)


Thursday, December 15, 2011

"2011' Christmas Mini-Moments Videos" :S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom shares her 2011 Christmas with you:)

What a Wonderful Christmas we had with Boo Bear. Every year I try to get some priceless pictures but this year I thought I would try to  catch Dustin in a video moment. (There are 2 Videos below) I really felt good about some of the gifts he would get to open up this year. So here are some pictures and video I wanted to share with you. Dustin has been under the weather a little bit so I guess his expression is not too surprising. Poor Baby:( We know he was happy with what he got for Christmas though:)
                                                                                                          Until Next Time. Take Care. Angela

P.S. I added an additional picture I got back frm Dustin's teacher. Dustin made a Hand Wreath for Thanksgiving. Each hand has something Dustin wrote he was thankful for. I thought it was too cute:) Merry Christmas everyone and here's to a Very Good 2012 to come for EVERYONE EVERYWHERE:)

(Click On Dustin Answering his Phone Below to Watch the Video)

(Click On Dustin's Tree  Watch the Video of  him Decorating it .)

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

"Gathering@ The 2011' Autism Speaks Walk Video & Pictures" : S.M.A.A.R.T. Mom's November "Mommy & Me Time-Out" @ The Autism Speaks Walk

Hello to My  S.M.A.A.R.T. Moms! What a Fantastic Turn Out! There were sooo many people that were there to show their support.
Although I think Dustin was a bit disappointed. You see for the past six years we have been attending the November Adventures in Autism Event held at Universal Studios of Orlando. Well, sad to say this year Universal stopped offering A.S.G.O. the discount tickets. And typically we attend the Autism Walks in April/ May. So I think he thought the Autism walk was actually going to be Universal Studios. Which of course, if I'm right, it would explain why he wasn't so thrilled when we got to the Autism Walk. He did get to see Jeffrey from ToysRus and some other characters. But Dustin only lasted about 2hrs before saying, "I'm Hungry. McDonalds?"  "Ten Chicken Nuggets, three french fries, and dr. pepper?" His typical order by the way. He is 15yrs old now after all:)
So we left but not before getting some wonderful pictures and videos. You'll just love the last video.........We just parked at McDonalds when I video taped Dustin. Sorry we missed some of you, but I really do Appreciate the Moms that were able to come. Maybe next year it'll be even better! Watch for me next month for S.M.A.A.R.T. Mom's December Mommy Time-Out. Our boys and girls will be out for the holiday so you better believe there will be a December "Mommy  Time-Out" before their Holiday Break. So watch for December's Posting to the right of my site. Until then...........Take Care. Angela

P.S. I just wanted to throw a Big HUG to my Dad and his really Sweet Wife, Dianne and say Thank You so very much for my early birthday card and present:) When we got back home from the Autism Walk I checked my mail and found an early birthday card from my Dad and Dianne. Thanks to both of them I plan/planned to take Dustin to Universal Studios Nov. 20th. However, I said planned didn't I.....well if I don't have the luck and have a talent for the unbelievable. The next day, after the walk and my plans for the 20th. I went to get some batteries and dropped a "AAA" Battery; of course it couldn't  be a "D" battery it had to be a "AAA" battery! When I went to pick it up; I COULDN'T GET BACK UP. OMG! I yelled for my husband, only to then stop and say to myself........."I can't believe I actually have fallen and can't get up. Is it time for Life Alert now? I'm  only going to be 43yrs old in a few weeks!"
Anyway, at least  I'm getting better now, it's taken a few days, but at least I didn't set that date (the 20th) in stone on the calendar for Dustin. I hear Universal Studios has Wonderful Christmas Displays in December and that IS actually the month of my birthday. So I guess that's when I think I will be taking Boo Bear. We Both just LOVE Christmas!  I do have another Mom coming with me for "Back-Up" my back that is (LOL). Wish us Fun Everyone and Thanks Again Dad &  Dianne! We  Love you!
                                                  (Click On "PLAY" to watch Video)


Thank You Alice an Heidi for making me  the Wonderful  S.M.A.A.R.T. Mom Banner.
You both did a Fantastic job!  I Love It! 

Angela's S.M.A.A.R.T. Mom TEAM

Walking for Autism!

"Say Cheese Helen, Judy, and Dustin!"

Dustin & Fireman Cow

"Dustin, You have a green frog on your shoulder!"

!High- Five Jeffrey!"

Shalley and her son Zac

Helen and her Aunt Dawn

Helen Showing her support for Dustin

2011' Autism Speaks Autism Walk

Dustin loves his Mommy!

" Autism @ A Renaissance Fair Pictures! S.M.A.A.R.T.Moms First Time Visiting The Lady of the Lakes Renaissance Fair!

Hello Everyone! I just wanted to share our experience to the Renaissance. This was actually a school field trip and I do my best to attend every field trip with Dustin. This field trip was one I really didn't think Dustin would handle well, but I don't vear away from these outings. The Renaissance was a new experience for Dustin as well as for me. So we gave it a whirl. I brought his favorite friends, Bugs , Daffy, and Tweety to help comfort him while we were there and I did have to keep him moving. He lasted at least a couple of hours before he started throwing himself down on the ground and started getting loud and clearly ready to leave.  I think at that point Dustin's classmates were ready to go as well. So everyone agreed and back to the school we went.
I can't say we had a fantastic time, but I can say I wouldn't  try this again maybe next year. If I stopped revisiting ALL of the places I have dared to venture with Dustin.......and believe me there have been many not so memorable outings. BUT.... today you would have never had a clue of some of the stories I could tell you. TRY, TRY, and TRY AGAIN. Being consistant with Dustin has been so beneficial. So I strongly advise other moms to at least make the attempt regarding ANY outing. There may be some not so good memories to make, however, the memories that are successful are more than worth it. Hope you enjoy our pictures:) Take Care.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

"Autism Speaks WALK TEAM ,Join S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom" : S.M.A.A.R.T. Mom's Last Reminder for November 12th Autism Speaks Walk.

The date is quickly approaching....November 12th is almost here Moms! The temperature is going to be 75* for the high! You can't ask for a better day for this wonderful opportunity to express your support for Autism. It's not too late to sign up and join Dustin and I along with some other fantastic people. So once again "CLICK ON" the S.M.A.A.R.T. Mom icon below and walk for autism this Saturday. Remember you will be with other mothers who are coming together to think outside the box of autism. Bring your child or teen with autism. It will be alright. We are here if you need us. We know how crowds can be for these  guys. So take a deep breath and think positive. Our boys/girls have got to learn to cope with outings, what better than one where you are clearly not alone:)
See You There and Take Care! Angela

(Interactive Button)

Sunday, October 30, 2011

"Gathering @ The Zoo Boo Bash" :S.M.A.A.R.T. Mom's October "Mommy & Me Time-Out "

What a wonderful time we had at the Zoo Boo Bash. So sorry some of you couldn't join us.....maybe next year:) To the moms that did join me, I would like to just say "Thank You". It's always easier and more fun when you have a good friend with you or more in this case:) Great Costumes by the way! I do  have some pictures to share with everyone. Hope you enjoy them.
Please don't forget to join S.M.A.A.R.T. Mom's TEAM for the upcoming Autism Speaks Walk November 12th. It's still not too late to join us for the walk or to make a donation for the cause. Look forward to seeing you there! Talk to you then. Take Care.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

"The Zoo Isn't Just Looking @ the Animals Anymore:Video & Pictures" :The weather will be cooler soon. It's now October but still very comfortable weather. So before it gets cold thought I'd give my Boo Bear a special treat this time when we went to the zoo.

What a WONDERFUL Day! Went to the Zoo this morning with our notebook and pen in hand:) Dustin loves to write down the animals he sees and check them off. I started this a while back when I realized my Boo Bear was afraid of animals. The Zoo has been very theraputic in regards to him feeling more comfortable around animals. I started buying an annual family pass so I could bring him there more often and without the major expense. In addition to the Zoo animals, the zoo has really grown for many other things to do now then when we started coming almost thirteen yrs ago. There is a small train ride, a merry-go-round,a stabalized bungee jumper, a splash zone area with changing rooms, and much more. Well today considering we are in Oct. now I thought it would be nice to let him play in the splash area ( 84* & sunny as can be). He had a fantastic time! I really hope to see some of my S.M.A.A.R.T.Moms Oct 30th for the Zoo Boo Bash. If you want to even join us again to the zoo before that, let me know. We try to go on Sat's. I know you & your son/daughter will have a great time! But if that doesn't convince you maybe this video I had to share with you may at least bring a Smile to your face:)

This is his check- list. Yes he added animals that ARE NOT THERE; but that still didn't stop him from adding those animals to his check- list. Maybe he knows something I don't (LOL)


Sunday, September 25, 2011

"Autism & LOST TOY TAG Video" :S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom's September "Online Mommy Time-Out" Video

Hello S.M.A.A.R.T. Moms!

Today I want to talk to you about my son's favorite toy/friend, Bugs Bunny. Boo Bear takes him everywhere. If you have watched in my past events and pictures you'll notice that Bugs is in every picture and video:) Well , one morning when we were getting ready to go on one of our outings. Dustin came to me in a panic......He yelled out to me " Where's Bugs?!"  I couldn't believe he was missing. This has never happend before Boo holds on to him tight. But sure enough he was missing. So needless to say the rest of the day was just miserable for us all. Poor Boo Bear was crushed. We managed to get through the day by doing crafts and playing games to detour his thoughts of Bugs. Finally we got through the day without any major melt-downs and Boo went off to bed hoping Bugs would turn up.
Someone was obviously watching out for our Dustin, because Bugs did turn up.......So, it was right then and there I decided to make sure this never happens again, not if I can help it:) So I began thinking outside the box and came up with "LOST TOY TAGS."
I made up a variety of tags to fit other favorite toys he had. I designed them to be able to put ANY  child's name on the tag as well as a contact phone number so that the toy can be returned if found by someone. I specified the toy tag to belong to a child with autism; however, having other friends with children who aren't autistic and for my friends who love their pets.......I decided to make LOST TOY TAGS for them too. I have created my own, but maybe you might be able to come up with a similar idea. If not you can click on the Lost Toy Tag Link  below so you can see if the lost toy tag is something you may need in the future. Oh and I did post a photo of Bugs Bunny wearing his Lost Toy Tag Shirt, which by the way Dustin always puts it on his Bugs now before we go on our outings:) Also, if you would like to watch the September Mommy Time-Out Online Video; just "Click On" the Bugs Bunny Photo.
I really hope this helps you like it has for us. Until  Next Time, Take Care. Angela

P.S. There won't be an October Mommy Time-Out Online Video, but I would love for you to join us for Halloween at the Boo Bash. Contact me for further details if you would like to come. We always have a really nice time:)

(Click on Bugs to Watch Mommy Time-Out Video) 




Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Gathering/Join the "S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom Walk TEAM" at "The Walk Now for Autism Speaks" event Nov.12th

Hello S.M.A.A.R.T.Moms, Friends, and Families!  I hope this will give EVERYONE  plenty of notice so that you can click on my S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom Interactive Button below &  JOIN the "S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom  TEAM" in "The Walk Now for Autism Speaks" event coming November 12, 2011.
It will be held in Altamonte Springs,Fl. at Cranes Roost Park uptown area. You won't be able to miss me; just look for the S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom in the Pink Shirt & Autism Ribbon Baseball cap:) Please don't forget to register by clicking the icon below
(You have to be registered for this event); bring a friend ,co-worker, family member, or your loved one with autism; I  AM :)...........and if you have a S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom shirt please wear it; if not, email me : eyesofautism@centurylink.net or  join me on Facebook.
S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom@Facebook.com  and  I will bring you a shirt when I meet you at the walk. When you go online to join you will be asked to make a donation toward the cause; please note that knowing how hard times are these days there is NO REGISTRATION FEE however, a minimum of $10.00 is appreciated if you can. In the donation box you can edit it for $0.00 ,$10.00, or more if you'd like. Also please be sure to check off the waiver box and if you are bringing your child, teen, or adult with autism ; please make sure he/she is a registered walker too. When I registered Dustin I did a $0.00 donation because when I registered myself I donated for us both. This way I only needed to make one payment rather than two. I thought I would just mention that. Oh, and when I made my donation I was also asked if I wanted the donation to be " In Honor of, In Support of, or In Memory of " my loved one with Autism. I just loved that idea! Again just wanted to let that be known. If you can't join the walk, but want to donate you can still do this by simply clicking on my S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom Button below and Thank You :)
Remember Autism is on the rise ( 1 in every 38 as of 2011') Please....You Are Such An Important Piece to the Autism Puzzle. Take Care & I Hope to see you there!

Angela (Creator of S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom)
"Mothers Coming Together to Think Outside the Box of Autism Behaviors"

( S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom  Interactive Button)

"Special Olympics 2011' Bowling Video & Pictures!" : brought to you by,S.M.A.A.R.T.Mom

What a Wonderful Time we had! I couldn't believe that Dustin hung in there for TWO full games. Way to go Boo Bear!
This year we bowled with the older group (15-21yr) . What a difference! I found everyone to be so friendly and encouraging; no matter the team. I was among some really good people that day who were there clearly for the same reasons I was. To be able to give Dustin as  many experiences that I could, to meet other people who are walking in our shoes, to feel a part of something positive, and to be able to share every experience I can with Dustin even if I think it may not go well.......I HAVE TO TRY. If it doesn't go well one year.....I'll try again next year. For the most part those outings do  get better. Sometimes it takes time, but that's O.K. I know it will be worth it down the road .
So, Dustin and I checked in and proceeded to the counter to get our shoes. I was asked what size I needed. I paused and said  a 7 .50. Well I guess it had been awhile since my last reality check :) I ended up getting My Boo Bear an 8.50 and could have done a 9 I'm sure (LOL) Then I thought to myself..." Yes, Angela, he is 15 years old now.Really a 7.50?...HELLO?" Sometimes I know it sounds crazy, but I forget; I mean he is my little boy. I guess on a good note, the 7.50 did fit me, so I didn't need to return the first set of shoes :) We went to pick out our bowling balls , where shortly after I asked him if he wanted to use the bowling ball ramp or not. He clearly and very loudly said,"No Ramp!" I asked him if he was sure and he confirmed it with a FIRM "Yes". So after  his first two frames hitting nothing but the gutters....he turned to me and said "Bowling Ramp Mommy".  So when his turn came up and he hit the pins...well lets just say pictures can say so much more than words......but I did better :) I HAVE VIDEO of that moment too ......LOL...I hope you enjoy this as much as I did. My Boo Bear is just too cute sometimes.

Sorry for the sideview video.I've tried to fix it, but just couldn't save it to show it correctly.


Wednesday, August 3, 2011

"Before Bed Time Autism Mini-Moment Video" :So here it is the evening of Dustin's "15th" Birthday.

              It's been an exhausting but Oh So Wonderful couple of weeks. Gotta love it when Autism offers you more of "THE UPS" then "THE DOWNS & Crashes" . So here I am getting ready to give Dustin his "heads up" 15 minute warning for his "Free Time" (computer) to wrap up. Usually with a 'heads up" transitioning from something I know is hard for him to leave, well this makes it easier to know it's bed time now. When I came upon Dustin I found him well.........I found myself reflecting  on this moment . Suddenly  and unexpectedly a  feeling came over me. OMG! Today was our son's "15th" Birthday and I know  our other children  have grown and moved on trying to start their own lives. I know everyone says Dustin has become a very BIG Boy and is still growing.....But it's times like these I have "MY REALIZATION" that He may be a BIG boy; but when you see him like this, like I do every day.....Maybe one can understand when I refer to Dustin as "My Baby". When you watch Boo Bear in this innocent way watching Barney while playing with his Looney Tunes friends; it's hard to see him as a teen. Besides in my HEART He's ALWAYS My Baby :) And we're so very Proud of all that he has accomplished!                                  

                                        "CLICK ON"
The Picture Below to watch what Dustin likes to do before Bed Time