Sunday, March 28, 2010

Nourish MD ebook review

I was given the opportunity to review several books by NourishMD including Real Snacks, Real Breakfasts and Real Lunch all of which can be found HERE. I had already been very interested in the website because I love the way it takes a graded approach to improving nutrition. They don't tell you to start sprouting your own seeds today right off the bat, but that information is in there for when you are ready. It is great for 'beginners to advanced.'

The book is wonderful and spends many pages talking about what Real food is...and contrasting that to fake food and bridging foods.

  • REAL foods: Eat a lot of these foods to grow healthy, strong, and fast.
  • Fake foods: Stop eating these foods if you want to be healthy and happy.
  • Bridging foods: Slow down on eating these foods; they are not as optimal for our health as REAL foods.

They outline the types of food in each of these categories and also show how to include your child in the transition. I actually was going to try and do a unit study using the ideas in these books but wanted to get this review out and I am a slow poke at putting together new curriculum. One of my favorite parts of the ebooks is where they talk about the history of our food and how it has ended up where it is today. This includes school lunches which is widely in the media right now with Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution reality show. There are tips included for making your own school lunch including using Laptop Lunches which I happen to already love. You can see one example of a meal we have made with these here.

These books are about REAL food. Gluten Casein Free diet (GFCF) is adopted by many people with kids on the spectrum and because of that market there are oodles of convenience foods out there to meet that diet. But that does not mean they are healthy. These e-books concentrate on REAL food from scratch but none of the recipes are overly time consuming.

At the end of each e-book are recipes.
There is a fair amount of milk in the recipes but most are adaptable. We have made oatmeal cookies with chocolate chips and cherries twice now and Andrew mentioned that they are WAY better than Koala Crisp rice bars that we buy at whole foods. I am going to continue to make some of the recipes and will blog that here and on my Settings of Silver blog. So stay tuned...

You can also find NourishMD on Facebook!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Two incredible finds...

I went to the Homeschooling Works book fair yesterday. It was great as usual. Each year I see more and more people I know. I am not quite an 'expert' there but I am no longer a 'newbie.'

I wanted to share my two favorite resources that I purchased which are both from Christian Light Publications. The first is called The Work of Thy Fingers. It is full of incredible photography of animals in all forms. For example, on one frog page they photograph the eggs as they form into tadpoles. I can't even begin to describe the beauty. It is a GIANT book and is also written in as a 'journal' and the text is very easy and fun to read. And it is less than $ incredible buy for this book. I found an 'inside look' of the book here. As a warning, I just showed my husband the book and on a couple of pages he said.."gross." There are just a couple of pages that show, for example, the growth of a baby animal from a very small size. In almost 300 pages, there are probably less than five that are like this. This is, by far, my favorite book I have purchased in a very long time.

I can't seem to find the second book on the Christian Light website but perhaps if you call... It is called My Brother's Keeper and I did find it on another website. It is about a boy with special needs and how his family takes care of him. It is a sweet book and shows pictures of the family and others as they all take care of this boy named Benjamin. They also deal with REAL emotions in this book such as how siblings feel about having a special needs brother as well as how God helps us with those feelings. A shout out to Valerie and Tricia who told me about this book as I was standing in another booth. I never would have found this or the book above without you telling me to go spend some more money!

I wish I could say this is all I bought...but it's not. (smile)

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Reading to Learn

I sometimes feel bad that we don't do more traditional learning at our 'homeschool academy.' I also sometimes feel bad about the amount of books I purchase...but tonight at dinner I saw just how much Andrew learns.

I have tried social studies texts but they never 'take' in his brain. We even mapped out past Olympic cities but that didn't' seem to work. However I recently gave him two books;
The Scrambled States of America and The Scrambled States of America Talent Show. Andrew is also trying to earn some cash for Mario Bros for Wii and always on the lookout for a buck. On the back of a juice bottle it said, "ME 5c" He said, "Hey! That's worth 5 cents." I reminded him that MI was Michigan at which point he said.."Oh yea. ME is Maine." He then went on to tell me about five more states and their abbreviations just from reading these above books on his own. We did a states puzzle and he knew the shapes of many of the states but we still have to work on location (since that really isn't covered in the book.) One thing he is doing with a US map is mapping out routes to visit his favorite authors...Do you think Dav Pilkey will open up his door if we show up at his house in NYC?

I am wondering, does this give me a license to spend more at the homeschool book fair this weekend?? Just askin....

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Picture Books

We have moved back to some picture books and having fun with them. Even though Andrew can read the chapter books there is more opportunities for simple sharing and prediction in picture books. Here are some recent highlights. I found all these at the library

Snowflake Bentley: This is a picture book autobiography of the man who photographed snowflakes. We also checked out his book Snow Crystals which is full of said photographs. It is very interesting for adult and kids.

For our Australia unit we read both fiction and non fiction. Some of the fiction included The Biggest Frog in Australia, Diary of a Wombat and Koala Lou. You can stand in front of section J994 and find your pick of non-fiction. We read; Colors of Australia (can be read online for free), G'Day Australia!, and Australia. MSB Expedition Down Under is a mix of fiction and non-fiction and is a chapter book. It is a fun easy read. Andrew's favorite is below.

We read several books with our Olympic unit. I really should have kept track of those. One very fun book regarding sports is The Fastest Game on Two Feet: and Other Poems About How Sports Began. I can't even begin to explain the book but if you like poetry, check it out.

There is a used book sale next week. As I started gathering books together for the sale, I found many that I want to use. So I am skipping the sale, and will put a list here of a few I want to sell- but I did decide to start Five in A Row Again. We started with Truman's Aunt Farm. Sometimes I find the suggestions in FIAR a stretch...but I am never one to follow a system exactly anyway.

As I sit here typing this out Andrew is reading G is for Google:a Math Alphabet Book. Each page has information, puzzles, stories about that letter. He is on K is for Konigsberg and he is trying to solve the Konigsberg bridge problem. We originally checked the book out from the library but he loves it so much that we purchased it. It has been read for hours. A Million Dots and Binary Numbers are two more 'math' book that we have enjoyed from the library.

At the library last week Andrew eagerly checked out several Martha Speaks books- who we can thank for Andrew's first call to 911. And he asked to buy Just Teenie by the same author..which is in the mail.

I think God had a dual purpose in bring this post in mind for me to write. I have been feeling pretty down on myself for our 'lack of schoolwork' but I can see looking over just the books we have read that we have indeed been reading, learning and sharing.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

What RDI can do....

This morning we had a 'benchmark' happen. One thing that can happen with kids on the spectrum is lack of 'referencing.' They don't look to others to find out information. We have Andrew's cousin over for a sleep over. In the morning, Andrew can't hear...he doesn't have his cochlear implant on. Cousin Ross can hear. Typically Andrew will just use captions to watch his morning TV but of course that would be annoying if you are hearing. Andrew didn't want to 'wake up Dad' with the sound. So I went in to rescue the argument. I turned up the volume to '10.' In the past Andrew would have just lost it because it wasn't the way he thought was 'right' and he wanted to control the situation. But he looked to me..and I signed "OK." We don't sign by the way- so he had to do some inferring here. He said, after i had signed, "so that's OK?" and i nodded yes.

Some of you are saying..big whip. Others 'get' it. :)

ok I'm adding a PS here... Andrew and Ross watched about 2 hours of Tom and Jerry. Andrew just says to Ross..."That was fun watching Tom and Jerry." cool eh?

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


Been thinkin' about balance a lot the last couple of days in every area of life. Take diet for instance. I am on oodles of healthy groups on yahoo and on facebook. We discuss things like, do apple seeds contain arsenic? Is saturated fat good? Is eating boxed cereal a terrible thing? When I buy organic food, what do they fertilize it with? Not kidding- each of these topics has come up in one way or another over the past week. For me the key is balance. I made homemade granola today with organic gluten free whole oats and organic brown sugar. But at some point I will open up the box of Gorilla Munch when the oats are gone because I have not had time to make more granola. I will put 'make granola' on the to do list and it will get done but not at the expense of my sanity.

But those are personal choices...and although not 'easy' they do not effect the masses. I struggle more with balance when taking Andrew in public and have been pondering this as well. Why, I wonder, do we always think that certain behavior is the 'right' behavior? With autism there are many behaviors that are not 'bad'..they just 'are.' But even take autism out of the equation. I think there is a time to be quiet and a time to be loud. But some kids NEED quiet from a sensory standpoint. But some kids NEED loud. They need to run and be 'crazy' and then they can sit back down and be their dutiful selves but it seems to me that many people think that the 'quiet' is the 'right' answer. If there is someone who needs quiet why does that always take priority? It is just as difficult for a child who needs extra input sometimes as one who can't take things on overdrive. I have a friend who has a child who is the opposite of Andrew..she doesn't like it wild and crazy and she needs calm. But my friend 'gets' that being wild and crazy is a fine way to be. Our children will never be friends, and our current friendship is reserved for the phone and middle of the night facebook chats. And that is just the way it is right now. Sure we'd love it if it were different..but it's we'll take what we can get.

I am not talking about disrespect here either. If I am in a situation where someone asks, do you mind toning it down because Billy needs it quiet, I try and accommodate. There are times, however when it would be just as easy for the child who has the 'quiet' bent to go off and find their own place instead of us being in the 'wrong.' Our kids are individuals. We need to raise up our children in the way they should go..and they will not depart from it. To me that means providing them with what they need individually so that they can grow into God's plan for them.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

My Husband Rocks

I knew this blog topic existed... and i just knew this was the week to start. So this story reads something like O'Henry except I did none of the giving. I have been wanting a Vitamix. I have been praying about it too and felt like today was the day. (I should have listened to Joyce telling me to not go by my feelings.) My good friend Lissa took me to Costco (because we do not have a membership) and we got the Vitamix. I got home, ripped it open and made my smoothies. yummo...

On Thursdays Mark has a friend that comes and helps him with stuff. I had gotten home with Andrew after his hair cut... and Costco...smoothie in hand. In walks John and Mark. I say, "Wanna a smoothie??" And John says, "nooooooooo..."


My dear husband had gone to Costco with John (who has a membership) and bought me a Vitamix. Now we have twins. Not is going back. Yes, My husband rocks.

Related Posts with Thumbnails