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Showing posts from November, 2016

Book Review: My Wonderful Fran: The Biography of an Amazing Girl by Paul Spelzini

My Wonderful Fran: The Biography of an Amazing Girl by Paul Spelzini My Wonderful Fran is a touching memoir of a very talented girl by her father. It covers her life in a very natural and straightforward way, covering her likes and dislikes, family relationships, holidays, school and sports. While the word Aspergers is used a lot in the book, it's really much more a study of how schizophrenia can quietly enter the lives of families and how powerless we can be without appropriate support networks. If you're the parent of a child with schizophrenia or chronic depression or if your child has been behaving suspiciously with possible intentions of suicide, then you need to read this book. Ultimately, My Wonderful Fran is about how even the brightest and most gifted of us, with the best of families, can stumble in difficult circumstances. My Wonderful Fran; The Biography of an Amazing Girl by Paul Spelzini is available in hardback, paperback and kindle form

Trump, Depression and Looking After your own

So, it's happened. Donald Trump is now the President of the United States. There's been a media frenzy and amongst it all, barely even acknowledged, a wave of suicides. So, whose fault is it? Trump's? ours? The media? The victims? More importantly, what can we do to protect our own? The Trump presidency is a macrocosm of the microcosm I currently find myself in. Yeah, it's all about me…. it's a similar microcosm to what many people, particularly those with differences, find themselves in every day. ...and the answers are just as simple, and elusive. It's not the end, we're still here! Despite all his pre-election rants, no president has the authority to take away basic human rights. They can't launch nuclear weapons simply because they don't like somebody and they're not going to wander through homes deporting or imprisoning people simply because of where they were born or what their sexual preference is. To suggest otherwise is “fea

Book Review: Color my Senses: The Sensory Detective Coloring Book by Paula Aquilla BSc, OT, DOMP

Color my Senses: The Sensory Detective Coloring Book by Paula Aquilla BSc, OT, DOMP is a colouring book with a difference. It goes into detail on the human sensory system and covers not only the five “major” senses of taste, touch, smell, sight and hearing but also three less discussed senses;  Proprioception; knowledge of where your body is in relation to the world. Interoception; knowing how you feel inside (eg: stomach grumbling) Vestibular; balance and movement  As a frequent reader of books about autism, I'm very much aware of these other senses but I think that this is the first time I've found all three in a book aimed at children. For me, that makes this the most accurate (perhaps the only accurate) kid's book on the sensory system today. Having introduced all of the senses, the book uses a “crossing the road” example to show how the various senses work together. It's a very effective example. At times, the level of detail is astoni

Book Review: Edward Unspooled by Craig Lancaster

Edward Unspooled is Craig Lancaster's latest "Edward Stanton" novel.  It follows on from the events of 600 hours of Edward, reviewed here and Edward Adrift, reviewed here .  It's funny because I really wanted more after 600 hours but felt closure after Edward Adrift. I didn't think there was much left to write about. How wrong I was. Edward Unspooled is easily the best of the three.  Edward Unspooled is one of the most enjoyable books I've ever read - and for that reason, I read it very, very slowly trying to enjoy every nuance of it. I've only finished it now because I've gotten a backlog of other books to review. You don't have to have read the other Edward books before reading this one but I think it probably helps. This time, the pacing is a lot tighter. Craig has dispensed with the weather reports and added a female voice to the mix. It makes things far more dynamic and personal. One of the things that I'm always talking about on

Creating Job Opportunities for Your Kids with Special Needs

I've posted a few times over the years on the difficulty of finding appropriate jobs for kids with Asperger’s Syndrome and other special needs. There's the need to find a job that matches their special interests but also doesn't involve a lot of confrontational personal contact. You need to find a boss that is understanding of your child's differences and who knows when to push and when to relax the rules… and of course, you need to get your young adult past the interview stage. Sometimes it's just “all too much”, sometimes you need to create that employment environment yourself. Picking the right career  There are two major factors influencing the choice of career; Special interests  Long term availability  Special Interests Your young adult with Aspergers will thrive in an environment that is tied to their special interests but not all interests are career-worthy. If your young adult has an interest in cars, woodwork, animals or computers