Always On His Mind

Church. We talk about going to church quite often. Usually, the conversation is on REPEAT. Tristan will sign “church.” We reassure him that we will take him on Sunday when the church opens. The moment we leave service and get buckled in the car, the conversation starts all over! If we had any doubt about what he was thinking on Saturday, he drew me a picture using his communication device as an icon to copy! I love his heart. I think the world might be a kinder place if we all were as enthusiastic about going to church every week. Enjoy another family moment from our home!

When I Realized…

We became accustomed to using American Sign Language(ASL) in our home. I don’t think twice about signing to Tristan out in public. I would often get a better response from Tristan when using ASL instead of verbal communication. In addition, I used ASL in my job at the local school in the special education classes. Children in the general education classes were familiar with ASL. I knew the rest of the population doesn’t communicate in ASL, and one day I was reminded of this.

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Thistleberry Farm – A Sensory Experience

We took Tristan to Thistleberry Farm in South Bend, Indiana. It was a wonderful experience. It was full of activities offering a sensory experience which is what our Forever Toddler craves!!! This picture shows him enjoying the space with corn to dig in. As you can see, he LOVES it.

Currently, we plan on only spending 60 minutes on any family day outing activity. Usually, Tristan gets sensory overloaded, and it is best to leave. However, at the Thistleberry Farm, we stayed and played for 120 minutes.
The variety of activities offered is simple but oh-so-fun for kids. (A jumping pillow, sand box with construction levers, hayride, bicycle tracks, cow train ride, corn mazes, apple launchers)
I highly recommend this gem of a place for families. It was a short drive from our home, and we will definitely add this to our annual fall family days.

Thistleberry Farm 2022

Am I The Only One?

Photo by Olya Kobruseva on Pexels.com

Due to the rainy weekend, we went to the movie theater and watched Sonic the Hedgehog 2. Tristan loves going for the snacks! He is a delight to take to a show.

Several times this has happened to me. I start watching a movie. Then I get completely relaxed. All of a sudden….I doze off. This scenario happened during the kid friendly movie. I am sure I was asleep for just a few minutes. When I woke up, I was surprised to see Tristan’s face was an inch from me! He was just staring at me intently. Then I thought of the people behind me. What were they thinking as Tristan stared at me, and he watched me sleep?

The next day I was chuckling to myself thinking about this. Surely, I am not the only parent that has nodded off during a children’s movie, right? Then it hit me. This Is Us, Season 6, Episode 3: “Four Fathers.” Jack, the father, falls asleep. Then one of his children wanders off. Phew! I knew I could not be the only one.

Enjoy another healthy dose of laughter from our home!

Movie Mix-Up

We love to take Tristan to a movie theater 45 minutes from our home. We love this old theater because the movie ticket prices are cheaper than the typical cost. In addition, the snacks are the least expensive I have ever seen at a movie theater. The theater has assigned seats for the tickets. I like this because we can plan the best spot for our family.

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To add adventure to our lifeā€¦the place is in a different time zone.


At first, we were careful about coordinating the time to arrive. One time Brian and I showed up at the wrong time. The theater was generous in switching the tickets. We had to wait a bit but for us, it was no big deal.


About a month ago, we planned a movie trip. There were not many titles playing. Tristan clearly communicated to us with his device he wanted a movie. Actually, he mostly wanted the snacks. His request goes like this: popcorn, pop, chips, and cheese, movie theater.


I scrolled the movie list and settled on a non-typical choice. Brian and I previewed the trailer to see if it might hold Tristan’s attention. After agreeing it might work, we ordered tickets. We did the math and headed out the door in a few minutes. The timing was perfect!


We arrived 45 minutes later at the theater. As we walked in, I noticed there was no line at the food counter. I felt like we arrived at the wrong time. I looked at my phone for the time. I glanced at the movie times. I looked at Brian and said, “Oh no we arrived an hour late. The movie had already started. It is halfway done.”


We quickly conversed about our next plan of action. Realizing Tristan does not always make it through the movie I said, “Let’s get our snacks and watch the ending of the movie. Tristan has not made it to the end of the last several movies. He will not realize half the movie has played. Honestly, he is here for the snacks anyway.”


We proceeded to order our usual snack list and went into the theater.


Tristan thoroughly enjoyed the action-packed movie! He never realized half the movie had already played. By the time he finished his snacks, the movie was over. The movie mix-up turned out to be a success!

Enjoy another healthy dose of laughter from our home!

The Great Debate

We took Tristan to his weekly restaurant request –McDonald’s. Tristan loves his order of chicken nuggets, french fries, chocolate milk, and a cookie. Not to mention the barbeque sauce. He loves McDonald’s sauce. In fact, we used to request several packets of bbq sauce with each order. He trained us! Then the amount got a little bit out of control. We scaled back and offered ketchup instead. This worked for a while.

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Forever Toddler – Enjoying Life

Our Chuck E Cheese evening was good. As you can see he does not fit on this ride, yet he is thoroughly enjoyed his ride!

It had been many years since we had stepped foot into a Chuck E Cheese restaurant. It was neat to see Tristan play some video games. He gravitated towards the race car-driving ones. He didn’t quite understand the concept of the games, but he enjoyed watching the graphics.

Enjoy another view from our family on the lighter side of autism!