A sassy, crafty mama bird from Los Angeles
raising a very sweet little girl with Autism
and a new baby boy in the Midwest... and other stuff, too.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

"everyday in LA"

This video is amazing. It was created by one of my favorite people on earth, Todd Brown.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Dear lady I met in the parking lot yesterday,

Dear lady I met in the parking lot of the children's therapy center yesterday,

I was waiting for you and your son to walk past my car so I could pull out and take Little Bird to the bookstore. She was really good at her second session of OT of the day, after a long day at school. A visit to the bookstore is usually her reward (she's a little obsessed with interested in books). You and I made eye contact. You came up to my window. I rolled it down. You said your son just wanted to see who was inside because he saw my Friendship Circle magnet on my car. We don't know each other, but we were in the same place at the same time- a place neither of us ever wanted to be and pray that one day we will be able to leave behind- and we were instantly bonded.

In about a minute and a half, we covered the basics: how old is yours? what school? what trouble have you run into with the public schools? Are you okay? I gave you my card, told you I write a little bit about the experience of being Little Bird's mom. You told me that you will definitely visit my blog, and that you cry a lot.

I know. Me, too. We are in it together.

By the way, I'm Dani. It was really nice to meet you. I'm sorry you've been tapped to walk this path, but you don't have to walk it alone. I'm here. There are a lot of us here. We're actually pretty cool, and we seem to still be able to have a good time now and then.

Hope I see you again next week at the ol' therapy center that's become a home away from home for us for the past four years. I'll be there. Same time, same place, same Little Bird.

Dani G

*This Moment*

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. -SouleMama

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Baked it myself!

Mandelbrodt, Mandelbroit, Mandelbread: the jewish version of biscotti.

It's good stuff. Every Jewish grandmother has her own special recipe and mine was no exception. Since I was visiting my parents, I thought it would be fun to break out my Grandma Gwennie's recipe book (aka look up the scanned documents on the computer in this digital age) and turn on the oven. 

Every recipe is a little bit different. Some use almonds, walnuts, raisins, chocolate chips, even jelly.

As the delicious loaves baked, my dad said, "it smells just like my mother's house in here." Can you imagine? She's been gone 21 years and still the smells can bring someone back. 

my dad said they were perfect!

Definitely would've made her very proud

Sunday, August 21, 2011


Traveling with the bird. Just mommy and Little Bird. 
We are in Colorado, high up (8500 ft) in the beautiful Rocky Mountains. 

2 backpacks, 1 purse, 1 stroller, 1 hyper Little Bird
(at least I'm a little lighter after losing my sweatshirt somewhere in the Dallas airport)

Her cute little cords, her cute little iPod listening to cute little Jay-Z.
Why? What do your kids listen to?

We took a little hike to a playground

most beautiful mountains in the world

walking with grandma

We are surviving. Kind of. LB is beyond hyper. Super duper stimmy. Think it's the altitude? Or do you think it's the cookies that grandma keeps letting her have? Probably both.

Friday, August 19, 2011

*This Moment*

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. -SouleMama

Friday, August 12, 2011

*This Moment*

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. -SouleMama

Wednesday, August 10, 2011


Last year, my bloggy friend Sherri (even though she's WAY cooler than I am) started up Wednesday Windows where she encouraged some of us to take a photo of what's going on outside our windows. Well, she began to marvel and tease that there seemed to be a lot of wildlife outside my windows. Deer, groundhogs, pretty birds, etc.

Well, this week, I opened up my garage door and found this guy on my driveway. His name is Jorge.

(Just in case you can't see this video, it's a huge effing snake, okay?)
I asked my mom if it's a boa constrictor or an anaconda. She said something like "Oh Danielle, that's just a little garter snake"- doubt it. Then she said that if I found it around a towel, I should check to see if there's a little snake family living there. So, basically, I'm never leaving the house again.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Right Place, Right Time

Little Bird and I recently took a trip to the local bookstore, which is now the only bookstore within a 10 mile radius (thanks, e-readers). When your kid with Autism's obsesh is with books, you tend to frequent the book stores and libraries in town. We're down to just this one store now and that's not good. Not just because of the lack of variety, but also because the people who work there are starting to recognize us and sneer as we enter. Does this have something to do with the fact that the bird grabs books from one section and carelessly replaces them in another? Yes. Yes, it does.

She loves the bookstore. She ran ahead of me into the children's section and I heard a sweet little voice ask the bird, "hi, what's your name?" All I could think was, "please be patient, please have a kind and tolerant parent here with you." As I got a little closer, I saw that Little C, this little girl belonged to a mom I know. A mom to a kid with some "stuff". In fact, I know them from sitting in the same waiting rooms and therapy sessions. Score! A patient parent who will encourage her kid to keep trying with the bird. A few more steps in and I notice that one of Little Bird's speech therapists is there, too! Double score!

Little Bird and her new friend ran around the bookstore together, making a huge mess... together. The bird would kinda do her own thing and Little C would follow her around, not giving up. If Little C ran off, LB would look back to see where she went, even following her at one point. When it was time to go, the bird shouted, "Goodbye {Little C}!!" So cute.

Sometimes it's nice to be in the right place at the right time.

Friday, August 5, 2011

*This Moment*

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. -SouleMama

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Want a date?

So, I have this thing about dates. I remember them. Not just birthdays, but also dates on which something significant happened (hey mommy, remember when I had the stomach flu on December 23, 1989?!). Scratch that, truth is, I remember some shit that has no significance at all. Big Daddy, does this remind you of anyone?

When it comes to Little Bird, I'm basically a walking database of her journey. Recently, someone saw the giant effing sweet little scar on her upper thigh and asked me what that was from. "Oh, that? August 29th 2008 muscle biopsy testing for Muscular Dystrophy and Mitochondrial Disease." Creepy, right?

Well, this is all coming up for me because yesterday was August 3rd. Six years ago on that day was our very first visit to our very first specialist, a neurologist. He was supposed to be the hospital's head of pediatric neurology. Oh, also, he was the hospital's only pediatric neurologist.

I was so sure that Little Bird's pediatrician was totally overreacting to the fact that she couldn't roll over or hold her head up at 6 months. The look on the neurologist's face told a different story. I mean, I guess it did. I couldn't tell because I just kept staring at his terrible hair plugs. Oooohhh, also on the way to that appointment, someone hit my car. That was an awesome day (ed note: that was not an awesome day).

That day was the beginning of our special needs journey. The first time anyone ever confirmed that something wasn't as perfect as I thought with my little baby bird. 

Cut to August 3rd 2011: the only significant thing that happened on this date was I got rainbow sprinkles on my frozen yogurt. And that's the way I like it. 

Monday, August 1, 2011

Cousin love

I just had to share this. I've watched it at least 7 million times and I'm not done yet. This is my sweet niece Little Bear. She loves looking at pictures of her big cousin Little Bird. There are 2000 miles between us. She's asking her mommy to show her more pictures. She's saying "I want {Birdie}". Enjoy.

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See, it's not just my mom! (since Jan 1, 2010)