Snow Day (Part 2)

We got another 10 centimeters of snow a few days ago. Loving the sight of it, but it is already melting.

The day it snowed, Bella enjoyed time outside, …mainly throwing snowballs! Here are a couple of pictures of her in action!

As an aside: The structure in the background (behind Bella) is an old outbuilding from about 1614. I think it was used as a barn and stable for horses way back then. We use it for our horse (…erm…car) and storage. I love the old stone structures here in France! 😍

We made it to see How to Train Your Dragon 3 and we all loved it! Beautiful scenery, gorgeous animation!

Bella has had a good week so far and we are steady on with school activities. We have plans to do a little cooking show next week. It’s going to be all pink, hearts and roses over here!

Until next time, wishing you all a big hearted, first week of February! ❤


Clouds Roll In

The clouds roll in, the clouds roll out, and sometimes they overstay their welcome. Today was one of those days.

Bella was able to make it through her school work and seemed okay during lunch, but in the afternoon, there were overhanging clouds of heightened sound sensitivity, and accompanying noise (made by Bella) to let me know how she felt about it.

One of the most puzzling aspects of Bella’s sound sensitivity and autism, is the impressive amount of noise she can generate even though she cannot stand various sounds.

Something I observe is that Bella will make noise just to avoid the eventuality, or possibility of sound. She abhors unpredictable sound.

Watching her closely, assisting her through rough spots, and managing my own energy along the way. Tomorrow is another day.

In more cheerful news, Bella and I went to see a 2D animated movie last weekend called, “Pachamama.” It was artistically beautiful and Bella seemed to enjoy it.

Bella’s fairy, arts and crafts project from last week is still brightening up a little corner in our kitchen. Every time I look at it, I think of the magic I believed in as a child, and how that magic is still with me deep at heart. It is the very thing that keeps me going on days like today.

Bella’s grandmother sent us a picture of the photo of Bella that we sent her for Christmas. She has framed it beautifully and attached a little accoutrement charm to the frame that says, “love.” Oh, how Bella loves her grandma!

Love indeed. Love is where all magic is born, and where all manner of unbelievable good can be felt and experienced.

Love sustains, and bring sunshine to the heart, even on cloudy days.

Wishing you all a bright hearted week!

…And a Happy New Year!

Even though we’ve had a sweet Christmas, and family here to help us ring in the new year, the house feels comfortably quiet and peacefully still.

I am unapologetically late with the blog this week as a symptom of burnout. Anyone relate? Renewing energy is primordial, especially for those actively caring for special needs children. So, here I am, …battery is charging.

Bella typically has very little interest in the world outside of her routine, with the exception of our adventures to the cinema a few times per month. However, I sense this is slowly shifting.

Bella made the cutest posters to welcome her cousin’s visit for the New Year holiday (..see below).

Unfortunately, her cousin wasn’t completely enthusiastic about connecting, and Bella has been disappointed. Still, they did share some good moments. They had a makeup party, made crafts together, and we all went to a movie together downtown. Bella was grateful for the interaction, and it was wonderful for me to witness.

Here is a picture of Bella with her cousin and friend, Coline.

And the lovely butterfly makeup kit they used for their makeup party!

We took down the Christmas tree and declarations yesterday. All that remains are the memories made, and the sweet feeling of promise in the new year ahead.

Bella has found joy in doing some small mosaic, art projects the last few days after finishing some glitter fairies with her cousin. Here is one of the sticker mosaics she has completed.

Now then, I hereby give you all permission to unashamedly charge your energetic, soul batteries, and to celebrate every moment! Even when you are asked to go it alone, or you are disappointed with outcomes you held fixed expectations about. I observe that kids (..on the spectrum or not) can teach us how to roll with the punches.

By all means, have a wonder filled 2019!

A Witch and Her Day

Happy Halloween! Before I share some of our Halloween day in pictures, I will tell you that we went to the cinema last Saturday and enjoyed the movie, Dilili à Paris! Bella was quite triggered by the sounds in this movie in particular. The sound of children, and other noises of the city had her covering her ears even with her head phones on, but she was able to navigate. We will go to cinema again tomorrow and possibly Saturday as well. Good exposure for Bella, and good for all of us.

I will share pictures and a video of Bella’s Sylvanian Families Halloween Costume Show next week, but for now, here are a few highlights in pictures from our Halloween adventures today!

Making Halloween Costumes!
The witch working her magic, creating costumes for her Sylvanian Families toys!

After our celebrations at home, we went out for a bit, drove by Bella’s favorite spots in town, and saw some pretty cool costumes on other kids who were out and about making their Halloween rounds! In France, Halloween is not celebrated as it is in America, but villages have parties, and some kids do go door to door asking for candy.

We had a nice dinner, ate a few bits of candy for desert, participated in Bella’s Halloween Costume Show, and watched a movie to finish our day. It has been a very fun, full, all treats, no tricks Halloween day.

And now, with the house still, everyone in bed, but me, ..I will vanish like a ghost until next week’s blog post! Happy Halloween everyone!


The Potpourri of Life

We’ve been up to our usual and enjoying each moment to the fullest. The weather is finally cooling down a bit, and there is a hint of fall in the air.

The pictures below are from Bella’s Monday art focus. She is learning to follow directions using four step drawing techniques and is learning a little bit of French at the same time.

And here is Bella’s watercolor painting from Monday.

The picture hanging on our kitchen wall (..pictured below) is Bella’s “It’s a Small World” collage from her social studies focus last year. At the end of November this year, we are going to do a social studies unit called, “Christmas Around the World.” Bella is very excited about this. We will also be studying the diversity of celebrations around the world from various religions and cultures.

These cookies are truly as good as they look, and they are made with nut butter (peanut or almond), a bit of organic, cane sugar, salt and one egg. We add organic, chocolate, hazlenut spread (clean version of nutella) to the middle for extra yum. This was a nice treat for all of us on Sunday.

All summer long we gathered flowers as they fell off their stems. Now we have an enormous pile of beautiful petals, leaves, and stems. Bella has helped me a bit with the potpourri, and has especially loved helping me with the blending of essential oils. Her favorite blend is orange, cinnamon, clove, ginger. It is definitely my favorite blend for Christmas.

We’ve finished most of the jars of potpourri, and we are contemplating another large batch with the bounty of hydrangea bushes we have. We’ll have plenty to share as Christmas gifts this year, that is for sure.

We have used the lavender we harvested in July as the fixative for the potourri. Bella wasn’t very interested in crumbling the lavender off its stems. I did that part alone. However, she did love the smell of the freshly removed lavender. It is a plant we use often here at home.

Bella built herself a boat last Saturday. A Lego boat to be exact. She has loved the movie Moana, and requested the Moana and Maui lego set. She’s had a challenge to say the titles of movies and books lately. I told her that if she could say the title of the movie and the brand, Lego we could buy the set. She was able to say the titles, and is doing well to practice each day.

Autism is truly a puzzle. We observe how the pieces connect and disconnect. Doing our best to help Bella reconnect the pieces as needed. Staying in a place of acceptance helps immensely. The unpredictable nature of autism asks for predictability for children who experience autism, and the autism asks for as much flexibility as possible from the parents and caregivers. In remaining as fluid as possible with each situation, we are practicing what we hope Bella will ultimately achieve; flexibility.

And finally, here are a few pictures from our latest movie adventure.

Wishing everyone happiness, love and joy always.

Sparkling Good Times

The highlight since our last post was Bella going to cinema…again! As you can see, she is wearing her headphones for the SPD part of her autism, and as you can also see, she is pretty darn happy! 😉 Here is a quick picture of Bella right before the movie started.

The rest of our week has been about usual, daily activities of homeschool, art, reading, learning French and trying to stay cool during the final hot days of summer.

Bella has drawn various pictures since our last post. Here are a few of them.

Many more to come!

Until next time…well wishes and sparkling good times for all!