Autuism Awareness Day. Meet my Little Prince.


Today is Autism Awareness Day.  The spectrum for Autism is so new and vast for a lot of people that they will tend to unfairly lump any kid who may be struggling into it.  This is sad to me.  Not just as a mother or as a professional who has dealt with kids that have an autism diagnosis, but as a human who sees that the majority of us are different and lovely.  Our quirks, struggles, and uniqueness should never be an area of torment or improper diagnosis but that of acceptance and learning.

Owen loves glasses.

Owen loves glasses.

But I have a son on the Autism Spectrum.  He has good and bad days which is inherently human.

When you, yourself, know your kid may fall into this ‘category’ it can be overwhelming and terrifying.

It is fairly easy to look for something to blame.  The weather, the pregnancy, the immunizations, the environment, your faith, etc.

Thing is, nothing is put into your life if you don’t have the stuff to learn how to handle it.

I suspected things might be awry with my son when he was as young as 18 months but kept quiet.

His speech skills were slower, his mood swings were more elevated, if he didn’t have a routine that was consistent, his day was a mess.

He only ate 4 foods, he slept erratically, and generally life was exhausting.  But I didn’t feel like labeling a baby.

As he got older, the need for routine grew more intense. His moods were our life predictors and if he didn’t sleep with somebody, nobody slept.

We decided he would share a room with his sister, a really great decision considering it’s one of the few ways he has learned to 1. Sleep through the night and 2. Actively engage with us on a more personal level.

We suffered through bad speech and occupational therapists and good ones.  We went through spirals with his behaviors and moods and we had great days, weeks, or months as well.

Professionals will often tell you that you need to do a lot of things to get your kid to be the same as other ‘normal kids’ but I don’t really embrace this.

My child is something rare, really they both are, and it’s very beautiful.

There may be days where, no, he doesn’t engage with you and his routine may be thrown by something you never even noticed so your ears will ring and you collapse into bed frustrated with yourself.

Then, there are days where you are able to take him to the park and he runs and shouts with glee the entire time.

He goes to the potty every time and is okay that you tried something new for lunch.

He love robots and superheroes and his nightlight penguin, Coco, and he will steal your glasses.

He looks just like his mother but the way he moves reminds you of his father.

He sits next to you and before he cuddles up for his nap, he turns your chin to look him in the eye and says “I love you.”

You draw him a box and say, “What’s this?” and he says, “A pirate ship!”

You are raising The Little Prince, a child more content with the stars than with others.

To me, this is more than okay.  He will be 5 in a few months and he has a more severe diagnosis now.

Doctors have asked me about meds for him and people have asked “What do you intend to do with him?”


I intend to let him be. I will let him grow up.  I will help him the best that I can but I won’t ask him to be a different person.

I already love him for who he is.  That is the best that I can offer him.

I will give him everything else that I can but I think the parent of any child, not just one with ASD, does their baby right but accepting who they are.

Sparkles and Glitter,

Sara Rose

Another Article! #GoRead

I am so happy to have become a regular write for A lot of you have asked about my recent cancer journey since I went radio silent about both here on this site and other places that I write.  There were a great deal of reasons behind that, none that I care to go into. But I love this article series on my illness because it will be focused almost entirely on the journey of recovery and how we have changed our life around in so many ways.

Please come peruse our latest issue!  Here- and my article starts on page 54.  Be sure to support local publications like this because they fuel the next big writer that you know!!!!

Glitter and Sparkles-

Sara Rose

Guest Post: The Edge’s Flame

Find her here-

Find her here-

 Cristina is my gemela. She is fire and I am water. We think and walk in much the same way but also in ways that would cancel each other out if we didn’t adore each other so damned much.  She graciously wrote here for all of us today.

I don’t believe in love.


And I don’t believe it exists.


That is, I don’t believe it exists anymore. I think it did once, and I am sure it was the love that many people would like to think they could have once more. Yet, I also don’t believe in the impossible.


The red and pink mirage that we have today is far too saturated with cliché and sentiment for it to be real. All things have become a vehicle to love and be loved.

We toss Love around like careless confetti not caring that it is tracked in our carpet or floats into someone’s eyes or left behind in the streets for sweeping. We are told that love means price tags and push-up bras, it’s about loving yourself enough to put yourself first, it’s about not even stopping at the bases before you go straight for home.


In the midst of reality shows helping people find their one true love, the career they love most, the wedding dress they always dreamed about loving, and even competitions for chefs to prove their love for food, there are commercials convincing us to buy the ones we love flowers, to protect them with insurance, to immunize them, or to house them in secured homes.


Is the love I have for my children the same love I have for a new mop? Of course not, and yet I will say I love them all, because even mops need love. And so there goes Love, overused like an inflated currency or a junior high fad. Because if everything is loved, nothing is loved.


Connection, however, is what we so passionately crave. This is what drives people to social media or to multi-dimensional movies or even to flash mobbing… it’s the innate desire to be a part of something more than the individual, to have the ability to reach out and be entirely absorbed with other people.


It is this emotion – this intensity – that we’ve replaced with a counterfeit. It’s easier to feel connected online than it is with someone you must invest feeling with, and it is easier to simply say you love someone you have not risked a deep connection with. We have learned the false courage needed to walk the edges of smoldering coals all the while celebrating our ability to dance in a flame.


No. Love doesn’t exist. It has long been extinct. What burns inside us, one with another, is the need to match pulses and let them beat together. One forehead against the chin of another, and simply listen to the breathing that comes from two hearts connecting.




A Mountain I have climbed.

A Mountain I have climbed.

“Adversity is like a strong wind. I don’t mean just that it holds us back from places we might otherwise go. It also tears away from us all but the things that cannot be torn, so that afterward we see ourselves as we really are, and not merely as we might like to be.”
Arthur Golden, Memoirs of a Geisha

Something has been weighing on my mind for months now.

I try to settle into a new pattern because last fall, doctors smiled and prescribed new meds.

There’s relief but also a sense of exhausted confusion.

You do ask yourself, “How does this work now? I tried to not let this define me, but in a very real way, it did, for several shimmering years.”

It’s not about going through the stages of grief, it’s about finding this new person I am.

I have a new skin now, it’s uncomfortable, it doesn’t always fit and I catch glimpses of myself in the window or a mirror.

I don’t look like myself, or maybe I do, actually, it’s just that who I am now looks, holds herself more cautiously, decides about life more slowly, and tries to fit the path I am carving.

The person I am now is both sharper and softer.  Bolder but also tires more easily, perhaps somewhat fragile.I happily shy away from excessive social interaction but am quick to call on anyone in need of my help or friendship.

I sometimes feel slightly dangerous, that my eyes have seen too much, my smile is too tired, and I am not as young as I should be. but alight when I hear my children laughing or the coffee whirring in the grinder.

I read a lot more, stay away from meaningless conversations, but am the mom who bakes cupcakes, coaches soccer, and leads scouts.

While waiting in line at the grocery store last week, I let an elderly man a head of me, and he turned to me to say ‘You’re too young to have seen so much life, my dear girl.’

I usually go to sleep with a few tears stinging my eyes.  Mostly a combination of good and tired tears but sometimes a little bitter or sad.

There will be changes this year, there already have been and they stretch me in tiring and exhilarating ways.

I have a mountain to climb yet, and a few more to see before this is all done.

Sparkles and Glitter,

Sara Rose



Sherlockian’s United! A Book For Us!


Amanda is the sister of my dear friend, Mindy, who will be guesting again very soon. Amanda has a fun book review for all of us bibliophiles who also happen to be Sher-Locked. We are trading some book reviews back and forth and pretty soon I’ll be writing about the Night Circus for her, so check her out. Anyone who loves reading and writing about it as much as I do is a pretty cool cat, in my book!

This book is a collection of stories that are about… you guessed it… Sherlock Holmes. The stories are written by a large variety of authors. In fact, I think that is part of the reason this collection is so great. There are authors from just about every fiction genre featured in this book. In total there are 28 stories in this collection, as well as a brief introduction by the editor plus a short summary of the Holmesian universe in case you are not familiar with it.

One reason I enjoyed this collection is that the authors did a good job of sticking to the original style that the Holmes’s stories are presented in. True to form, Watson is the narrator in most of these tales, and the adventures (for the most part) remain in the traditional setting of Holmes’s London. Of course, there are a few tales in the lot that deviate a bit from the traditional Holmesian way and those were some of my favorites.

Have you ever wondered what would happen if Cthulhu ever came back and the creatures of Lovecraft ruled our world? Have you ever wondered about the tales that Dr. Watson mentions but never explains from the original stories? Or have you ever wondered why Holmes shouldn’t have come back to life after the The Reichenbach Fall? And perhaps one of the most important questions you need answered that this book can provide a solution to: why would a dinosaur kill a trombone player?

All these questions and more will be answered by the vast array of tales in this collection.

As I was reading these stories I couldn’t help but compare them to other tales that I’ve read about Sherlock Holmes. These stories are not as great as the originals, but as I said, they do recreate the mood and setting well. I also compared these tales to 2 book length Holmes stories that I’ve read in the last two years – Caleb Carr’s The Italian Secretary and Anthony Horowitz’s The House of Silk. Of the two, I preferred The House of Silk. It too made me feel like I was reading one of the originals again. The author captured many of the qualities that are so familiar in Doyle’s work.

If you are wanting to read some Holmes adventures to find out why people can’t stop reading him after all these years, start with the originals, and after that, the collection The Improbable Adventures of Sherlock Holmes is a good place to continue.

What Is Love? Nolan Speaks.

Nolan is my husband. When I’m not highly irritated with him, he’s pretty good at being a guest poster on the blog.  Since we are in the month of love, I thought that a few of us could write about it.  Now eat something yummy and read something sappy.


A friend is someone who knows all about you and still loves you.”

Elbert Hubbard


Love is friendship. We all love our friends, they are often like a second family. The point that is so often lost in clichés on television or in books or movies is that the person you love is your best friend. Not that they should be your best friend, that they are your best friend. Nietzsche, for all his nihilism, had something to say to this effect that I can’t help but think of when times are rough – “It is not a lack of love, but a lack of friendship that makes unhappy marriages.” When you treat your friends badly, it causes tension, even if you still care about them; in a marriage this effect is magnified. Be loving, but also, be a good friend.


Love is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.”

Robert A. Heinlein, Stranger in a Strange Land


Love is happiness. We all get low sometimes. We lose loved ones, work wears us thin, the little things add up like straws on a camel’s back. The essential thing to understand here is that in love you are a team working toward a goal of happiness. When someone you love is unhappy that rubs off on you. It’s difficult to impossible to smile, laugh, or get motivated when your better half isn’t feeling his or her best. Why? Because you want to see them happy, and because they aren’t you feel unhappy. When times like this arise, eat your hat, pull up your bootlaces, and put on your biggest grin, because showing teeth in the face of adversity will bring you out of it, along with your partner.


We’re all a little weird. And life is a little weird. And when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall into mutually satisfying weirdness—and call it love—true love.”

Robert Fulghum


Love is weird. Absolutely. People try and pin it down to something specific – chemical reaction, psychological condition, survival instinct. This is the wrong way to go about it. It’s all connected, and it’s beautiful and strange. Weird can be uncomfortable, hilarious, sad, ecstatic. It can be all of these at once, or something else entirely. That old couple rollerblading on Sundays, definitely weird, definitely still in love. The young couple playing “Alien and Abductee” in the isles of Wal-mart, definitely in love. It’s the quirks that make each love unique and impossible to pin down, it’s not meant to be analyzed and understood, it makes little sense to question it once you’ve found it. It’s love, true love, and the greatest blessing you will find in life or death.


Once upon a time I received a phone call that woke me from a nap, a phone call that told me I was coming to my birthday dinner, like it or not. Okay, okay, I’ll drive half an hour for some food. I called from the porch instead of knocking. Weird. I walk in and have a stuffed giraffe thrown at me. Weird. I haven’t showered for three days and smell and look like a pig, so I ask to wash my hair in the sink. Weird. Her wild hair flies around an angled face, carried on grace and the scars of youth.  There is a baby girl making raspberries and cooing at me. Okay, okay, this might be love. Weird. We make pirate jokes and give each other nicknames, Thorax and Mai Tai. Weird. We predict fashion trends together, accurately, based on our own interests. Weird. We consider each other family because we both need more than someone to spend time with, we want someone to build a life with. Okay, okay, this is love. Weird. We get married when neither of us ever imagined it happening. Weird. We laugh at inappropriate things together. Weird. We rescue animals together because it’s the right thing to do. Weird. We argue over little thing, big things, in-between things but always find some common ground to move forward from. Weird. We get sick. We get poor. We get a second child, a boy, this time. Weird. We get stressed and slam doors and open arms hours later to a flood of comfort and relief. Weird. We are so incredibly different, but these difference keep us learning while our similarities keep us content. Weird. We have days of smooth sailing we too often take for granted because we’re caught up in the days of stormy seas so often beyond our control. Weird. We believe differently about the universe, but both agree we were made for each other. Weird.


I love you.


Let’s Talk Food Stamps.

Yup. Your worst nightmare.

Yup. Your worst nightmare.

I’ll say this nicely.

If you have a problem with food stamps, people in poverty, a country being responsible to their constituents, you have a problem with me.

Supposedly, 47 million people are currently on the SNAP/EBT food stamp program.

My family has been part of that over the last 8 years, on and off.

Are we lazy? Sitting around, popping out babies to get more benefits and snorting coke?

Nope. We have degrees. We worked the absolute maximum that is allowed so that you can receive assistance to feed our family.

We were also downsized from companies or bone tired every single day from taking maximum amounts of credit hours, working, and having kids.

Most people I have known who has received benefits of any kind from the government is working a terrible, low wage job that offers no chance of advancement or making ends meet.

I can honestly say that I have only met a few of us that made it totally ‘out of the system’ and that ‘the system’ is a nightmare.

Paperwork constantly. Assets can be used against you, as in “You both have cars to get to work that is an hour in opposite directions but couldn’t you SELL ONE FOR MONEY?”

It’s all sorts of ridiculous and while I don’t doubt that there are people who violate this, it’s supposed to be there to help families such as mine get on and stay on our feet, not down in the trenches.

Don’t be too quick to blame Obama. Or Bush. Or Clinton. This has been a nightmare for decades.

Don’t be quick to judge poor people or poverty either- I’ve seen people in poverty work in jobs that most would sniff at, just to make ends meet.

But the ends never really do and you cannot let your children go without something as basic as food.

Heaven forbid you have a savings account with even $15 in it. That can be used against you.

A government’s job is to take care of its constituents and if that means that we provide food, then we do.

Don’t get up on me yet, because we go to the unhire-ables.

People employers won’t touch with a ten foot pole due to disabilities, mental illness, or physical limitations despite statutes in place to protect them.

There’s always a reason to say “They weren’t the right fit.”

That always leads to these people needing help.

Yes, your taxes go towards that.

So do mine and my husbands and yes, we were in the system, we pay those taxes willingly and gladly.

We were ‘part of the problem’ and we have needed help more than once.

You can view us as terrible for receiving help but….

Funny thing is that, I coach your kids at soccer, lead your daughters at girl scouts, we volunteer at the humane society and the shelter or the school, and we work hard.

We are functioning members of society who work hard to give back and we do not mind the idea that we have obligations to others.

Our society is deeply selfish and that can be blamed on the image in the mirror, not on the person who happens to be in the Oval Office.

Of course, these are experiences. Opinions. Numbers are even colder. So, for those who want some numbers instead of just ranting, this next part is for you.

Let’s examine the recent cuts passed in Congress. Yes, those people who are supposed to have the best interests of their voters in mind. They worked a cut into the farm bill that has been delayed for over two years. In this bill $9 billion dollars in cuts to the food stamps program were approved, along with the expiration of $11 billion dollars in expiring stimulus funds. This adds up to about $90 dollars cut per month per family currently receiving food stamps. That’s enough, used wisely, to feed a family of four for a week.With more and more families falling into poverty, this is a loss for the American people, that can be blamed on Republicans and Democrats alike.

Now, what is poverty? The government currently defines the poverty rate in our country as a family of four with an income below $23,500 per year. Roughly 47 million Americans are currently in this situation, or roughly 15% and rising. That’s not quite 2 out of every 10 people you see at the grocery store.

The big complaint of those in favor of cutting food stamps, amongst other benefits, is that those who receive them should just get better jobs, that they’re obviously lazy, or obviously troubled. Let’s examine these points.

Jobs are increasingly hard to come by. At last check, nearly 3 people competed for every 1 job, including those at places like Walmart or fast food franchises. The problem here is that the poor are trying to get out of this poverty trap, but with wages well below the world standard and jobs unavailable, it’s just not possible. I know plenty of poor people, we’ve been poor, as I’ve admitted, but not once have I seen someone who didn’t want a job. I’ve seen people in tears because they couldn’t pay their bills, seen people break down about not being able to feed even themselves, much less their family.

This is stress. Poverty is stress. It’s a proven fact, under such conditions, people do not perform well, so the poor are stuck in a constant cycle of being poor, being stressed, and even when they are able to do something about it, it’s never enough. The cycle repeats. This is not their fault but the fault of the government and the businesses who have bought it out to avoid paying even reasonable, living wages.

The problem is compounded. This week, data was released that shows most food stamps go to working Americans. That’s right. They’ve got jobs. Not only that, they have degrees. In 1980 only 8% of people with a college training needed food stamps. According to the same study by the University of Kentucky, that number is now 28%. Those with a degree jumped from 3% to 7%, and high-school graduates from 28% to 37%.

Now the why. The government wants to cut food stamps, while not increasing minimum wage by a reasonable amount. By and large, these folks are also against abortion. So, let’s translate that for the common man: the government wants poor people having poor babies born into frequently bad situations and wants this growing number of people to fend for themselves.

So, if you have a problem with Food Stamps, it’s also with me and my family.

My husband and I have excellent degrees and training and have had to scrabble like dogs for our careers.

I know a physicist who works at McD’s, as a janitor, and as a transcriptionist to make ends meet.

I know an endocrinologist in the same position.

More importantly, we’ve all had to fight to stay anywhere near or above that poverty line for almost a decade.

There are people who argue that people in poverty have poor money skills.  I beg to differ.

Like myself, most people I know who have been poor, have become extremely close with their checkbook.

We can NOT afford to not know where every single cent of our paychecks go.

People in poverty or the lower middle classes happen to be higher contributors to charities as well. Ironic.

We aren’t a part of the problem because we are the generation to take office next, we are the next solution.

The solution isn’t more cuts. It’s bridging the ever widening gap between the rich and the poor.

It’s also not complaining that we have to take care of our own.

Also, this post welcomes discussion, but I will remove any negative or derogatory comments at my behest.


Glitter and Sparkles,

Sara Rose


I which I shall lose my female readers.

I have a secret. A deep, dark secret that only few know.

Why? You keep no secrets from us, Sara!!!! What?

Oh, every one has them. But it’s time for this one to be opened up like the maggot infested can of beans it is.

Why? We have regular mini-discussions where more and more people find this secret out and ARE AGHAST, I TELL YOU.

Now, first I must disclose one thing. This about how a final product is delivered. Not about the deliverer.

Oh, Jane. So disdainful.

Oh, Jane. So disdainful.

Are we ready?  I have truly hated everything I ever read by the Bronte sisters or Jane Austen.

I know, everyone is throwing handkerchiefs in the air and wailing at me, a female writer, for this admonition.

Last night, I was talking with one of my male friends and my husband, and OF COURSE THEY ARE ALL


Today, I talked to two female friends, and . . . . I don’t know if we’re friends anymore . . . now that I admitted something so shameful.

Here’s the simplest break down I can think of for my rational.

These woman talk 900 words to describe a pot roast, the love interests are always crazy-pants jerks, and nothing really happens.

Except endless, flowery language that makes me want to sit on top of post offices with a squirt gun loaded with vinegar.

It’s not a time period thing. Definitely not.

There were women busting out and into a field where it was a boy’s only club.

I admire Ms. Austen and the Bronte sisters for producing notable pieces during this time period.

Bot so did so many other, amazing writers!

Mary Shelley, Emily Dickinson, George Eliot (yes, a woman), and a few others come out of the 19th century too.

Every one of them writes completely differently in style and theme but I relate to and enjoy their writing SO.MUCH.MORE.

I feel like a traitor to woman kind.


Like, it’s this thing- if you are a well read female, you obviously love these women.

I always am reading 6 books at a time and manage to finish two books a week and I have hated every time I forced myself through one of their respective pieces.

When I was on my bed rests with each kid, with surgeries, or just being flat out sick, I think “Ok. Let’s give this a fair shot again. It will be better.”

I wind up wanting to scald my eyes and tear my hair out.

I’m not going to compare this to 19th century male authors that I enjoy- then I’ll get thrown the sexist chip.

I think this moves into how I prefer great, epic stories to be told. There is a beauty to sparseness. It leaves you to enter the story too.

Now, I shall sit here patiently as you all whisper hateful pittances and throw dirty hankies at me.

It’s okay. I understand.

The Bronte's hate me, too.

The Bronte’s hate me, too.

Glitter and Sparkles,

Sara Rose


A Chat on Manners with a Kiddo.

A big thing to me, probably more so than whether I am disciplining my kids over mundane things, is how they carry themselves.

How they act towards others, in different situations, and I am probably endless in my tirade about manners.

Those who know me well have heard me on repeat, good manners almost always lead to good behavior.

I know there’s the exception- those of us who can smile and polite our way through any situation, but be total jerks in real life.

But when you think about it- where those good manners anyways?

Because if you teach good manners and emulate them, especially to your kids, you’re probably a decent human being.

I had this interesting conversation with E, my daughter, as we are trying to navigate some, frankly, crappy waters at school with her.

I wanted to know if she felt all the time we have put into her manners is paying off.

Her response, “I might be kind but I guess that doesn’t stop others from how they behave. But I can’t change that.”

I think it’s interesting she chose the word kind.  Inherently, decent manners should make you a kinder person.

So I asked her for a list of what she thought were the best manners all kids and adults could have.

It’s interesting because it’s her perspective, not mine, but she holds a lot of similar things in high regard.

Take a look.  It’s fascinating when a kid can succinctly say what matters most about being a decent human being.

"Shall we talk?"

“Shall we talk?”

E’s List of Manners (I tried hard to not edit too much, only for grammar.)

-A lot of other people will be rude or mean. Try to be kind to them. If they aren’t, walk away. They don’t know what they missed.

-Always wait for everyone to eat and always ask to be excused from the table. Don’t sit crazy because that shows the cook you don’t appreciate them.

-My mom says it’s important to always act like a lady and even sometimes ladies have to stand up for themselves.  But ladies are always smart in how they stand up for themselves. Even if it means being bitchy (she let me write that!).

-Read a lot and learn a lot so that you can be prepared for different situations, but also in case you need to find a way to politely stand up for yourself. You can’t do that if you don’t know anything.

-Ask about others before talking about yourself.  It’s always better to let people talk about their stuff first.

-Walk away from mean situations.  Do it before you regret something that you saw, did, or said. It’s never good to be mean.

-Open doors for people.  A lot of people can’t or they need help. I don’t so I can help.

-In fact, just find new ways to help people, animals, or the environment. There’s too much bad in the world and it’s bad manners to not try and find a way to help.

-Don’t ask inappropriate questions. You can ask your mommy and daddy for help to make sure what you say is ok.

-Don’t call someone by their first name unless they say you can.

-At someone else’s house or with other people, follow their rules. Their house or life is different than yours. I guess it’s up to you to remember that it’s important.

-Go through life quietly because there’s time to be loud and crazy but most of the time, you learn more by being quietly.

-Wash your hands. Did you know nails are dirtier than public toilets? Gross.

-Brush your teeth. Your breath might be gross.

*Ahem. Eva thought of a few additions for this post. See below!*

-I mentioned before that my mom always says a woman should act like a lady. That’s true. We need to teach people how to act like ladies and gentlemen again. There’s a way to be yourself but be graceful to other people.

-Don’t laugh at what other people say they like or don’t like. Don’t make fun of it. There might be a reason and besides, you should like them for who they are.

-Don’t push people in the mud. What I mean is, don’t be mean on purpose. People can be pretty terrible. Then again, that person you just pushed may have done nothing wrong.

-Think twice about what you mean before you speak. I read a book once that said, “Once spoken a word is never broken but it can break you.”
That’s the gist of her list.  She’s pretty awesome and I think it’s cool that an 8 year old thinks about this.

We all talk about the different manners, behaviors, etc., we want our kids to have.

But it’s amazing what our kiddos will actually take away from those lessons and how we carry ourselves in the world.


Sparkles and Glitter,

Sara Rose