Sunday, June 10, 2012

Catching Up with Aspierations Friends

Hello Aspierations Friends,

I've been thinking about you lately. I've had so much I've wanted to share over the past couple of months and yet each time I decided to sit down and blog, something else took precedence or grabbed my attention.

Of course, now that I have my buns in the chair and am eagerly starting to blog again, I just remembered that Blogger recently changed their formatting.  Ugh!  The Aspie part of me (the part that moaned about this in my last post) that would really prefer it had stayed the same is feeling a bit discombobulated.  This is the same part of me that has not appreciated some of the recent changes at Facebook but has finally conceded that the timeline thing they have can be kind of cool once you get used to it. Overall though, I'm still feeling positive. Any time I can sneak discombobulated in a sentence brings about a bizarre sort of amusement.

I'm quirky that way.

A lot has recently happened and I'm thinking I should break it down into multiple blogs. Here is a quick summary:

1) John and I had an amazing time in New York City where I attended the 2012 GRASP (Global and Regional Asperger Syndrome Partnership) Awards and was a Distinguished Spectrumite Medal honoree. The trip to NYC is definitely worth a blog entry so watch for that very soon. The GRASP folks were absolutely amazing and it was a real delight meeting Michael John Carley and a number of the other honorees and guests.

(This was during my acceptance speech. I never realized how much I "talked" with my hands until I saw the group of photos that the photographer and my husband took of the event!)

2) Local Vancouver Science Fiction / Fantasy author and musician, Brian Tashima is donating to Autism Empowerment a portion of the proceeds from The Secret of the Songshell, the first book in the Spectraland Saga series. Brian's writing is amazing and we are so humbled by his wonderful offer. Brian is releasing his book in July and we will be blogging about his launch parties very soon! Brian's main goal with his book series is to provide youth on the autism spectrum with a fictional hero they can call their own - a character that saves the day WITH his special qualities, not despite them!

3) The non-profit that John and I co-founded last year, Autism Empowerment recently passed our one year anniversary!  HOORAY!  We've accomplished a lot in our first year and will be blogging about that soon.  We look forward to the day when we will work for Autism Empowerment full-time. To support our programs, events and services, Autism Empowerment is looking for financial support and in-kind donations and appreciate any support you wish to give.

4) In family news, Ryan is finishing Kindergarten and has just joined Cub Scouts as a Tiger in Sensory Friendly Cub Scout Pack 2. John will be the Den Leader.  I will be in the meetings with Ryan. Justin who is currently a Star Scout in Boy Scouts is serving in a volunteer role as Den Chief for the Webelos II group.  Next week will be the first "official" week that all four of us will have some sort of role within Cub Scout Pack 2. I am incredibly proud of my family for their service!

5) While John and I were in New York, John's sister, Sara and our niece Kiersten came down from Alaska and up from Arizona to watch the boys. It was great bonding time for everyone!

5 1/2) We're looking forward to a summer trip to California to visit my parents. I really miss my Mom & Dad and the boys really miss their grandparents. I wish we had the opportunity to see my parents more often. I am going to work hard this year to make sure that happens.

6) In late summer, John and I will celebrate our 20th anniversary by taking a family cruise through Autism on the Seas from Seattle to Alaska and Canada.  We have been saving a little bit each month for YEARS for this trip and are SO looking forward to it!

7) I had a wonderful experience attending "Going Beyond" with Priscilla Shirer in Portland, OR last weekend. My personal relationship with God has grown so much stronger in the past year. I feel I have moved forward in leaps and bounds from where I was last fall and the strength I have gained in my faith and understanding, I am using to build Autism Empowerment. I have said before that I truly believe Autism Empowerment is my calling. I am a continual work in progress but am wholeheartedly dedicating my life toward God, my family and helping provide acceptance, enrichment, inspiration and empowerment to those impacted by autism / Asperger's.

Life is good!  Yes, it is still filled with challenges, twists and turns.  Admittedly, I sometimes look at things ideally instead of realistically. I'm a dreamer, a big idea person and I have a goal to help change the world for the better one connection at a time.

I'm really excited about the launch of Autism Empowerment Radio.  It is going to be awesome! Truth be known, I wanted to launch this station well before now but other life issues took precedence and I wanted to wait until the timing was right. My time and God's time don't always feel like they're in the same time zone so I am learning to be more patient and realize that I can't implement everything I'd like to do at once. It doesn't mean I won't stop dreaming about it and it doesn't mean I won't be proactive to make it happen.  It does mean that I am learning to cut myself a little slack.  That has been a long time coming...

It sure does feel good to be blogging again.  The month of May has been a bit funky for me the past few years and that goes back to something bad which happened to me in May over 20 years ago which I still have challenges with from time to time.  I am happy to say that I am now at a place in my spiritual and personal life where I believe I am healing and moving forward.

This year I created some new memories in May during my whirlwind trip to New York City with John. I was so excited to see my first Broadway show.  The whole trip was quite an adventure... Yes, I experienced sensory overload in Times Square... and admittedly I did freak out a bit during my first cab ride but the experience was totally worth it!  I look forward to blogging about the GRASP event and NYC trip very soon.

Thanks for stopping by!

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