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The “GARDEN…of…GILROY!”

Very beautiful, very soothing , very ZEN!! VERY ~AUTISM FRIENDLY~! A little bit of EDEN right here in California!! We just returned from our annual trip! Sunday was a perfect day to enjoy all of that beauty and more. The weather was warm and sunny with lots of shade and water to keep cool if need be!! If you have not heard about this AMAZING place….then please by all means, pull up a chair!
We first discovered this magic garden through the T.V. show “California’s Gold” with Hewell Howser! My brother Kevin was intrigued by the “Circus Trees.”

An amazing man, Axel Erlandson created them in the1920′s. He was the son of a Swedish immigrant and when he saw Sycamore trees grafting through natural processes he had a brilliant idea. To graft several trees into architecture. The results are stunning. His vision and foresight to create beauty in this manner is unparalleled! These trees are WORTH the trip alone.
After Mr. Erlandson had passed away these specimens were languishing without his loving arborists care. There were people caring for the trees by trespassing! Luckily Michael Bonfante was constructing this amazing garden park in Gilroy when he heard about the plight of the Circus Trees! He for all intense purposes rescued them, bringing them to this beautiful new home!! He took on the monumental task of uprooting and relocating them!! AN INCREDIBLE VISION!!
The VISION of complete beauty and love for nature. That is what you feel as you stroll every inch of this park! Oh yes there are plenty of fun and thrilling rides for all the kids to enjoy. The setting also is just so overwhelmingly serene.
Wyatt, having been on the more severe side of the SPECTRUM loves this park! The place is NATURALLY Autism Friendly!! There are so many nooks and crannies for “CHILLAXIN!!” You can ALSO get a pass to forgo any waits you may encounter. Go to the public-relations desk and you will be given a packet of info. Present this if the lines are too long for your ASD child to handle…and you will be escorted on the ride quickly. OR given a precise time to return for your turn!! You have got to LOVE THAT!!

CLICK HERE FOR PURE BEAUTY!! http://www.gilroygardens.org/


There are many, many ways to get sensory needs met here! Wyatt has a high energy favorite in the Balloon Ride!! He loves it in the basket spinning through the wind!!! Nothing better in his book. There are other spinning and swinging rides for that deep input. Real Jolts!! There are also rides with a much gentler “Jolt Factor” as well. There is a wonderful train-ride that circles the park in 2 routes. You can travel 1~way OR round~trip!! At the top of the park you will find the fun SPLASH GARDEN!! When you feel the need for a cool-down this is the place to be!! From mists to sprays to buckets …Water can be FUN!! Bring your suit and towel. Or choose a new one from the supplies on sale!! However you enjoy your sensory needs being met. There is something for EVERYONE HERE!! BRING THE WHOLE FAMILY & ENJOY!!

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EVOLVING…Naturally!

It is ALL we can do. We were born, we are, and we grow. Inside and out. In all shapes and directions. That is EXACTLY what makes life so damn interesting!! Some allow the boundaries to really soar, While others ground themselves. That my friends is the human condition in a “Nutshell!” All except for the inevitable “passing on”. But, that is all in good time. We are speaking about the HERE AND NOW!!

So you get that big mean nasty Diagnosis…The “A”~Word. AUTISM! What now?? Times have changed in the last 10 yrs. Now parents are given a cohesive packet of information and in some cases an informative DVD! Jon Hope at my San

Gabriel/Pomona Regional center shared with me the nice package he has implemented for my area! Still though you feel adrift. When you realize that your child is impacted in such a way. Such a way …that their future is NOT THEIR OWN.

If you allow THAT reality to impact your daily life it can be detrimental. I move on from that idea…and realize that it is my destiny. A fun destiny with my child …for LIFE! We will evolve naturally. I with my child!!Granted it won’t be anything like a “typical life” …but, as life moves into this 21st century less and less seems “TYPICAL” anyway!! Life experiences have a way of morphing into the future. The future that is shifting and changing even as we speak! One of my favorite sayings from my late-father says it all!! “Nothing is constant except change!”

Thus we land back at the original concept. “Evolving Naturally.” This is the process we go through. Diagnosis… a moment (or 2~ or 3) of denial…and then attack plan. Hopefully, we try, and try & TRY and learn, and learn & LEARN. Because there are so many TRAINS SCHOOLS of thought!! ‘CHOO~ CHOO’…&…’A B C~ 1 -2-3′!! Your family can then pick and choose what works best for you and your ASD individual!! “Finding your Formula“…to help you all EVOLVE~ NATURALLY!! At ANCA Naturally autistic.com Leo Gregory has created an amazing resource over these last 15 years!!

PLEASE TAKE THE TIME TO CHECK THIS OUT!! http://www.naturallyautistic.com

This organization is cutting edge!! A no-nonsense APPROACH to ASD issues! There is much to be learned and utilized on every inch of this website! Please peruse and enlighten your lives!! Thank you to EVERYONE AT ANCA!!

We are so looking forward to ANCA’s NATURALLY AUTISTIC AWARDS event on October 30th this year. What an amazing moment that will be for so many deserving and appreciative individuals! Deserving of this CELEBRATION of their service and their Many TALENTS!! BRAVO to ALL INVOLVED!!

FOLLOW the FUN happenings leading to the EVENT HERE!!…http://www.facebook.com/posted.php?id=375738298145&share_id=114353168606199&comments=1#!/event.php?eid=140857799269780

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The Much NEEDED “Re~FOCUS!!”

We all need one from time to time! In AUTISM speak it is called “RE-DIRECTING the energy”…lol Well, we ALL do it. Sometimes we go down the garden path, get lost, stumble… and PERHAPS we fall. The best of us get back up and re-direct our energy in a more productive and positive fashion MARCHING- ON. That has always been my philosophy. It keeps me sane. In this world of Autism. Like the salmon that swim up stream…We ASD Families know how to march on …if we know nothing else. INSTINCT for survival.

In a world with so many variables. Variables within your mind and your child’s mind. Walking the neuro-typical tightrope! It is a tricky task. Walking that tightrope in your mind. How does my child feel and think here? How does that compare to the way I think and feel here? It can be very complex at times. However that being said there is a lot of CLARITY that autism brings to our Neuro-typical mind. Clarity about what is truly important!

That is so much a lesson EVERYONE should learn! What truly is important in this world and our “so-called lives!” I will tell you one thing I know. It is not important to know everything about Lindsey Lohan’s sad state of affairs. Yet, if I turn my T.V. on that’s what I hear about!! REALLY? That is DUMBFOUNDING to me! (Perfect word) Perhaps the rise in AUTISM is precisely here to counter THAT NONSENSE! People have become so obsessed with social B.S. it is ridiculous. The time, money and energy spent on inconsequential stuff is staggering. In the grand scheme of things how does that info help anyone with their day!?

I guess it makes people feel better about their state of affairs? That they are “smarter” than Lindsey Lohan?? C’mon people that is not a great milestone to compare yourselves to. This instinctual comparing and gossiping…where does it come from?? Why do others “suffer” from it so much more than others?? I have been a very social person my whole life! I have never been accused of being “shy.” However, the longer I live ~added with my 8 yrs. of learning about my son and his place on the spectrum…HAS CHANGED ME!!

I still talk a lot (probably way too much) but, in my mind I am a different woman. I now see the importance of NOT obsessing on the little nuances. The petty social conundrums people create. In the grand scheme of an ASD lifestyle you just don’t have time for that “NOISE.” Really that is all it is to me at this point. Oh I used to be right in there…Oh isn’t so and so dating so and so …and didn’t she steal him from so and so?? Blah Blah Blah. It is amazing to me the time U.S. media spends on rubbish!!

OK I am delusional to think people will stop worrying about Lindsey Lohan and concern themselves with ASD issues. I’m just saying it will nourish your soul, your train of thought, your mind’s eye…all of the above. As opposed to a heaping pile of nasty information about an entitled, selfish, ignorant ex-starlet! Enlightening yourselves about the mind and its inner-workings can be fascinating. So much more so than who is in the cell directly next to STUPIDITY?!!

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“CLOS~AUTS” ???

Is there such a thing? Unfortunately… YES! People embarrassed by AUTISM. Sad but true fact. Human nature is such that …imperfections must be hidden. Hence…the proverbial skeleton “in the closet! ” Heaven forbid we should be perceived as LESS THAN perfect. Give me a break!? Can’t we just finally stop with all the pretenses?! NOT A DARNED ONE OF US…is…P E R F E C T !!

Thank Heaven!! So WHY do we expect these amazing ASD indviduals to be PERFECT ? Makes no sense to me. People need to respect Neuro-Diversity. It exists… plain and simple there is just no denying it. BTW…”IT” is not a death sentence. Just like Dana Commandatore’s story…when her Son’s AUTISM diagnosis was given the Doctor said ,”Take the time to grieve.” & Rightly Dana says, “Why? Is he going to die?”SO TRUE! It is not the end of the world. It’s time to get on with the living! She has an amazing mind

…please visit http://www.Rethinkingautism.com they are doing very cool things toward AWARENESS and THE much NEEDED Re~FOCUS!

A re-focus on understanding and acceptance. No more shame and denial. If the mainstream media and general population had a REAL clue about ASD we would “fit in” better. I know there are families out there that cannot withstand some of the scorn &/or rudeness and are ready to learn. Learn the real truth about AUTISM. Not the all too familiar “catch-phrases” and misnomers . Real SOLID Information that will help the two worlds of thought co-exist.

Co-exist with parents not paranoid about what others in society PERCEIVE. What is wrong with “Society’s Mom” Anyway? Didn’t she teach Society, that “Looks are deceiving”? & “That you can’t judge a book by it’s cover?” lol…Well , I’m just saying people have to STOP being so judgmental. There is a whole GROWING Population of ASD/ Neuro-diverse people that society needs to embrace. I’ve said it before…

Our blinkers are on and we are merging in. The AutismHWY is the road we are on we can’t change that. So we need to enjoy the ride! After all this ride is our life. What we need are AUTISM ROAD~ RULES. Etiquette, Understanding, Enlightenment all of the above . For our Individuals to feel “stable and able.”Accepted in the world and Celebrated “AS – IS.” No embarrassment , No scorn, No denial. Just a softer world of love and acceptance and VENUES for fun and opportunities that ALL PEOPLE ENJOY. It truly IS a civil right!RE THINK AUTISM! Realize it is NOT a DEATH Sentence. It is a LIFE Sentence . One to be enjoyed together co-existing in peace. So for those that will ask a therapist with a puzzle piece auto sticker to not park in front of their home. Please…

So…with the ROAD RULES being laid down and all the ISSUES being understood. It WILL HAPPEN! The merging of two Highways…”the Mainstream” & “the AutismHWY”. Traveling the highways and byways in parallel lanes …ENJOYING our rides!! Realizing that we DON’T have to be the same and see eye to eye. That truly is impossible. REALIZE that and know that, Neuro~Diversity….ROCKS!!

CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW for Dana Commandatore’s speech at The 26thPacRim Int. Conference on disabilities!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MqfTeFiNoN4

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