Stepping Into the Spectrum

Tuesday, April 24, 2012 12:22 PM Posted by The Cookie Cutter Diva 0 comments
So much is on my mind right now about everything. A lot of people know from my blogs or from me personally that our children all have something special about them in one way or another. My oldest has tourettes and respitory airway disease. My 2nd one has high functioning autism and severe migraines with seizure like activity (they all it parkinisms?). My 3rd one seemed to be competely fine.. a little quirky and some things that made me think but nothing like the others so over all I didn't think it was to unusual and being that she was our first girl I thought part of it was just being a girl or that she would grow out of it.

My husband was getting frustrated with a few things with her and I kept reassuring him and saying "she's just a kid, she'll grow out of it" till the more he pointed out the more I noticed which brought to my attention more the quirks I had been concerned with and started linking them all with each other and wondering if maybe it was more then just her being a silly little girl and if we should have her looked at. I mean really what would it hurt to take her to see?

A big part of me thought I would take her in and be told "she's just a girl" and me tell him "See I told you!" and a big part of me deep down knew it was coming and that they would say "I think she should be tested for Autism, she sounds like she is on the spectrum". This was completely different from my son when he was diagnosed. I had it set in my head that I KNEW for sure something was up with him and just had autism tugging on my heart and if a dr told me "Oh he's just fine" I was livid for being blown off! I just didn't know how I felt this time.. I was somewhere between. But the more I talked to the dr, the more I read, the more I found myself admitting it and blaming myself that here I thought compared to the others she was so normal that I didn't seek help sooner and was I to blame for not paying attention? How could I just sit and let her be on the back burner?

So she is now being referred for occupational therapy and to be tested for autism and start therapy if it is for sure confirmed.

Many are asking me what I'm seeing, they don't see it (but this isn't new to me.. no one saw it with Keagan either unless you spent several hours around him because he was so high functioning)

These are the symptoms we see in her and took her in for

•Avoid eye contact

•Have delayed speech and language skills

•Repeat words or phrases over and over

•Give unrelated answers to questions

•spin in circles

•smell, taste, look, or feel (she's vegan)

•Does not understand personal space boundaries

•Hyperactivity (very active)

•Impulsivity (acting without thinking)

•Short attention span

•Unusual eating and sleeping habits (she wakes every hour, sleeps with all lights on and all doors open)

•Unusual mood or emotional reactions (extremely emotional)

•Lack of fear or more fear than expected

some other concerns we had.. she does play with other children but over the last year and a half she has become very with drawn. She is very very unusually shy and will not make friends, will not respond to people other than the normal few people she has been close with for years. She has problems catching on to learning.

Developementally she can't hold a crayon, pencil, silverware right. She can't turn her clothes right side out or needs help with things like putting a jacket on. Very uncoordinated.

Though I am happy to be getting some answers and getting her some help and hope she does as well from the help as our son Keagan I feel a bit numb to it all like I did when he was diagnosed. I can't imagine the therapy schedule we are about to go through like we did with him. I know it won't be an easy journey as it wasn't with him. Yes nothing changes in our daily life with her as we live with it every day but what changes is our schedules now that we are going to get her help and our approach to many things with her now that we have a better understanding of what she is going through.

I wish we were not in a brand new place going through this.. right now is when I need support of my friends to lean on them and though I know they are there on the phone or the internet.. it's just hard. I am making some good friends here though.

Deluxe Chicken Casserole

Monday, April 23, 2012 9:03 PM Posted by The Cookie Cutter Diva 0 comments
this is a huge favorite in my house!! Haven't had it in a long time though so we made it tonight! Super yummy!!!

Serves: 6

Preparation Time:8 min

Cooking Time:15 min


1 1/2 cups diced cooked rotisserie chicken

1 1/2 cups cooked rice

1 cup chopped celery

1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

1 (10-3/4-ounce) can cream of chicken soup, undiluted

2 teaspoons finely chopped onion

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper

1 tablespoon lemon juice

3/4 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup water

3 hard-cooked eggs, sliced

2 cups coarsely crumbled potato chips

Instructions 1.Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Combine first 10 ingredients in a large bowl.

2.Combine mayonnaise and water in another large bowl; stir with a wire whisk until smooth. Add mayonnaise mixture to chicken mixture. Gently fold in egg slices.

3.Spoon mixture into a greased 7- x 11-inch baking dish; top with potato chips. Bake, uncovered, 15 minutes or until casserole is thoroughly heated and bubbly.

Slow Cooker Tuscan Beef Stew

Sunday, April 22, 2012 1:21 PM Posted by The Cookie Cutter Diva 0 comments
Trying a new recipe for dinner tonight! 1 can (10 3/4 ounces) Campbell's® Condensed Tomato Soup 1 can (10 1/2 ounces) Campbell's® Condensed Beef Broth 1/2 cup Burgundy wine or other dry red wine or water 1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning, crushed 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder 1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes with Italian herbs 3 large carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces (about 2 cups) 2 pounds beef for stew, cut into 1-inch pieces 2 cans (about 15 ounces each) white kidney beans (cannellini), rinsed and drained (I also added some chopped up potatos!) 1.Stir the soup, broth, wine, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, tomatoes, carrots and beef in a 3 1/2-quart slow cooker. 2.Cover and cook on LOW for 8 to 9 hours* or until the beef is fork-tender. 3.Stir in the beans. Increase the heat to HIGH. Cook for 10 minutes or until the mixture is hot.

Painting Fun and Guitar Lessons!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012 5:55 PM Posted by The Cookie Cutter Diva 0 comments
Aidan had his 1st Guitar lessons today as part of his school lesson and we did lots of finger painting yesterday and painting today!! Lots to clean up after but lots of fun haha

Three Cheese Beef Pasta Shells

5:14 PM Posted by The Cookie Cutter Diva 0 comments
trying a new recipe in the house tonight!

24 uncooked jumbo pasta shells
1 lb lean (at least 80%) ground beef
1 jar (26 oz) chunky tomato pasta sauce
1/4 cup water
1 container (8 oz) chive and onion cream cheese spread
1 1/2 cups shredded
6 cheese Italian cheese blend (6 oz)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg
1 to 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, if desired

1 Heat oven to 350°F. Cook and drain pasta shells as directed on package.
2 In 10-inch skillet, cook ground beef over medium-high heat 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thoroughly cooked; drain. Cool slightly, about 5 minutes.
3 In large bowl, mix pasta sauce and water. Pour 1 cup of the pasta sauce mixture in bottom of ungreased 13x9-inch (3-quart) glass baking dish. In medium bowl, mix cheese spread, 1 cup of the Italian cheese, the Parmesan cheese, egg and cooked ground beef. Spoon heaping tablespoon mixture into each shell. Arrange stuffed shells over sauce in baking dish. Pour remaining sauce over top, covering shells completely. Cover with foil.
4 Bake 40 to 45 minutes or until bubbly and cheese filling is set. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 cup Italian cheese. Bake 10 minutes longer or until cheese is melted. Sprinkle with parsley.

1st Hair Cut!!

Sunday, April 15, 2012 6:04 PM Posted by The Cookie Cutter Diva 0 comments
My youngest had her very first hair cut this afternoon! A little baby trim!

Military Kids Fest

Saturday, April 14, 2012 5:56 PM Posted by The Cookie Cutter Diva 0 comments
The kids had lots of fun going to the free military kids festival today! From face painting, balloon art, games, characters, snow cones and more!

World War 1 Museum Field Trip

Friday, April 13, 2012 10:18 PM Posted by The Cookie Cutter Diva 0 comments

This afternoon the hubby took the 2 oldest kids on a field trip with one of the local homeschool groups to visit the World War 1 Museum while I took the younger ones with another group for an indoor park day since I'm sure they wouldn't have appreciated the museum to much haha

The boys absolutely LOVED it and had so much fun and learned a lot!

Turtles and Snakes!

Thursday, April 12, 2012 10:05 PM Posted by The Cookie Cutter Diva 0 comments
We made a turtle suit out of a box and a long snake out of construction paper to go with our reptile lesson this week!

$.10 admission? Yes Please!!!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012 9:55 PM Posted by The Cookie Cutter Diva 0 comments
We found out that today was $.10 admission day to the Science Museum in Kansas City so we jumped in the car and declared it to be a field trip day haha!
The kids had so much fun! I always here "Once you've seen one science museum, you've seen them all" but I have yet to see that! They all seem so different and we've learned something new every time!
We will be going back for sure in the future!

Pizza Casserole

Saturday, April 7, 2012 5:45 PM Posted by The Cookie Cutter Diva 1 comments

Pizza Casserole

1 bag of Egg Noodles
1 extra large can of Ragu sauce {or any tamato sauce you prefer}
3 cups shredded mozzarella cheese {or more depending on how much you ♥ cheese!}
1 1/2 lbs hamburger meat
1 package pepperonis

Brown the meat, & drain

And boil noodles until soft. Drain.

**Don't forget to preheat the oven @ 350!

Now the layering starts!
Spread a thin layer of tomato sauce on the bottom

Second layer, half of the noodles

3} half of the meat
4} half of the sauce
5} rest of the noodles
6} half the cheese
7} rest of the meat
8} rest of the sauce
9} rest of the cheese
10} pepperonis {I only used half the package. saved the rest for next time}

It should look a little something like this...

Now cover with foil, and bake for 30 minutes

After 30 minutes, remove the foil & bake for another 15 minutes


Friday, April 6, 2012 10:29 PM Posted by The Cookie Cutter Diva 2 comments
today we started some of our favorite Easter activities! I hosted an Easter Homeschool Workshop at my home today and we dyed Easter Eggs, made bunnies out of Paper Plates, ate some great Easter treats and did an Easter Egg Hunt!

Legends Outlet Mall and Dave and Busters

10:08 PM Posted by The Cookie Cutter Diva 0 comments
when Bryan and I came up to hunt for a house we left the kids with my parents and got a little mini anniversary trip out of it for us as well while we had the chance to be alone! We enjoyed sight seeing and checking out the large out let mall and finally making it to Dave and Busters!

Life in Kansas in Our Beautiful New Home!

10:05 PM Posted by The Cookie Cutter Diva 0 comments
Well we arrived safely in Kansas and so far we are loving every moment of it! It's a beautiful place and Kansas City is just 20 minutes away from us for us to enjoy! We are in a small town but it is a very friendly quiet town so far from what we have seen but anything that we can't get here is just 20 minutes away so you can't beat that at all!
We were fortunate enough to find our home on the first day of our search! I am in love with it! It's a huge step up from our duplex we had before! It's a beautiful 2 story home that is 2180sq feet with 3 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms with a very quiet neighborhood. We have mostly retired neighbors.

I even have a wonderful school/daycare room upstairs now with the extra loft room we have! It is under construction at the moment since I just ordered 2 bean bags to go by the book shelf for a reading area and a large area rug with the united states on it. I also have to get another desk in here! The boys dresser needs put together and the bottom part of the girls bed but everything got done super fast other wise!