Sunday, June 20, 2010

Summer Activities

These are some pics of some outings we have had this summer.


Hogle Zoo: comparing his size to the apes

These were all so fun! The zoo and Children's Museum were both in Salt Lake and both class field trips with his school. The zoo wore me out, it was so overstimulating for him that most of the time he was just running around everywhere. Once he wore himself out alittle, he really enjoyed looking at the animals.


On a hike in the canyon with Daddy

Hiking is something we are working with him on this summer. We would like for him to go on short hikes with us. Here you see his dad had to pack him out. Next time we will let him play in the water at the falls, and that will give him some hiking motivation!


Children's Museum

The Children's Museum was really nice. He loved the activities there that involved large soft blocks and cranes, water, balls, and digging. This was alittle easier than the zoo because it was in a more confined space. (And yes, he was wearing a bright orange vest so he would be easier to keep track of.)

Soon his summer program at school will be over, and I am compiling some fun educational activities for him to do for the rest of the summer locally and at home. Please let me know if you have ideas! I will post mine. :)

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Cool Summer Salad

The other day I had a need to develop a recipe for a "summer salad" to share at a potluck. This was the result. I was very happy with it. What a great allergen-free treat that is nice and cool-- great to have on hand in hot weather when you're craving ice cream, popsicles, and jello!


Healthful Pineapple-Orange Gelatin Salad

1 box Knox unflavored gelatin (1 oz, 4 envelopes)
1 can frozen Dole juice concentrate, Pineapple Orange Banana flavor
2 tablespoons sugar or honey
3 cans mandarin oranges in mandarin orange juice, (not corn syrup,) 10.5 oz each
1 can pineapple tidbits in pineapple juice, (not corn syrup,) 20 oz each


Prepare juice as directed on frozen juice can package. Open cans of fruit and drain juice into prepared juice, (optional.) Use prepared juice to prepare 1 recipe “Fruit Juice Knox Blox” on the back of the package of Knox gelatin, cutting knox blox to 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch squares instead of 1 inch as package directs. (Gelatin will take 3 hours to set in the refrigerator before it is ready to cut.) Scoop little blox into bowl and stir in drained canned fruit. This recipe is way versatile. Experiment with your own juice and fruit combinations, or try embedding fruit in the gelatin. Your family won’t even know it is good for them!

Sunday, June 6, 2010


This situation happened afew months ago, and I am still shaking my head in disbelief. The school district where my son attends has a psychiatrist. As part of assessing him for the next school year, we had to go in and see her. She spoke with us, and then observed Eli. She did not interact with him, or test him, and she was speaking to us most of the time he was in the room.

Diagnosis: Eli has autism and also has a hard time focusing.

She was waiting for the word to write on her little pad a prescription for him.

Daytrana, she said, was a ritalin patch. It is easy to control the dose and when he gets it, she says.

I have to admit, I was alittle taken in at the time. My husband was rightfully skeptical with the whole idea. At that time, for afew months there, Eli was getting frustrated extremely easily. I looked back on how I took ADD meds through college, but we said no thank you at this time. I discussed this with my sister later who said, "Ritalin?! I had some of that, never took it because I hated the way it made me feel."

Holy cow was that the slap in the face I needed. I remembered the similar meds I took when I was in high school and then college. I could focus on everything, right down to the way the girl's shoes in the front row didn't match her outfit. However, I felt like I was watching a show or something. I felt like I could not interact with the world around me. Do not even get me started on the "let down" effect. I could never do that to my son, my little son who does not even have the words to tell me that he feels strange.

Now that I have discovered that my inattention can be taken care of in large part by nutrition, I will never be on attention meds again.

Now just months later, Eli's general frustration level has gone down. He has been bringing home raving reports from school, without the aid of Daytrana.

I have to say that I am very concerned over the whole episode of the school psychiatrist, and I fear for families who may not be aware that ritalin is one of the most overly prescribed drugs in the whole nation.