Tidbits Of My Week

I stayed up and finished Defending Jacob last night. I will admit that I did not see the ending coming. Kind of hit me right between the eyes. 




Those who have read this book, I'd love to maybe have a Facebook discussion of it. Anyone have a Facebook Book Review group? Maybe we need to start one. What do you think?

One person's comment this week was that reading the book was "very disturbing." I have to agree with that. 

I give Defending Jacob 5 stars because it is very intriguing and keeps you guessing till the very end.

I will probably start one of these books tonight...



Read any of these four books? If so, what did you think? Look Me In The Eye and Love Anthony are books about autism. The other two are the genre I typically read: psychological thrillers. I am drawn to these books. I like books that really make me "think."



I finished printing out Israel's citizenship study guide. It is lengthy. I doubt most of us would know many of the answers. 

I also found videos online that will help him with pronunciation. He will learn by repeating words after the person on the video.

He's been in the US about 26 years. I think it's about time he got to call himself a citizen. So I'll keep you updated on his progress.

I think I'm going to have him build a square wooden garden spot for the patio. 

Abi thinks she must jump into the big containers to do her business. And after her surgery, I really don't want her doing that. 

So if he builds a plot about a foot high, and I plant annuals and plants that don't have a deep root structure, maybe I can get her switched over there. 

Although, granted, she's stubborn as a mule.



He also fixed what's been bothering me since I moved in: my fence leaning way over into the man's yard behind me due to a tree growing so big that it's pushing it down. 

I told management instead of removing the tree, which seems to cost around $9000, the situation could easily be remedied by taking down that one section of fencing at the end. Then extending the fence into the man's yard about 2 feet, and putting the section back up. Which would give the tree a bit of room.

Israel found parts of fence sections around here and so didn't have to buy anything. A win-win for everyone. 

So this week they approved that, and it works perfect. (Why does no one ever listen to me?)

I was in the office paying my rent earlier in the week when this conversation transpired. I also told them that I had given Israel a stove to heat up his shed. But every time he turns it on, it throws the breakers. So he can't use it.

So when he isn't called upon to do something, he sits in his car with his coat on, and runs it to stay warm. I made mention of this, letting them know by my tone of voice how ridiculous this is. I was met with silence, but hopefully they will remedy this situation. 



One thing about Aspergers Syndrome that confounds me is that when it comes to, say, how to do social media, or following instructions, I often just draw a blank. Which really frustrates me. 

Seems illogical that I can go into the guts of a blog for someone, dig into the seemingly nonsensical HTML, and often figure out how to fix something. And I've never studied this kind of thing.

The brain is made up of so many elements, I can understand that one wire being crossed, for lack of a better phrase, could perhaps mess a few things up.

But understanding the premise and living with it are two different things. 

I don't like to feel stupid. I've lived with that my whole life. I've tried to work jobs that a gorilla could probably master, yet I couldn't.

Then I'd have my daughters telling me "you don't try hard enough. You don't give yourself enough credit or give it enough time." Which of course then made me feel guilty and confused.

They don't seem to understand that I could give it from now till the end of time, and I still wouldn't be able to master some of the things that are required of a person in a day-to-day job.

I wish there were more out there for adults with Aspergers.

Because generally there is something that we are very good at, if I may make that assumption or draw that conclusion. 

But then there are other things that seem easy for everyone else that merely raises a question mark in our heads.

Yet I can be in a car driving on a highway, see a billboard, and, without reading the words, know that a word is misspelled in the ad.



On another note, I have been enjoying a frozen food that I found a few weeks ago. It is called "Fishless Fish." (Seems a non-sequitur, huh?) So now I'm on a nightly ritual of either eating fishless fish or veggie burgers. 

These ritualistic nightly menus typically go on for months. It took two years for a baked potato for supper to run its course with me! Yes, I truly can eat the exact same thing, with a little variation here and there, for two years. 

Maybe I should join the circus...

Fishless fish looks like fish, but is not fishy, if you get my drift. It is made up of vegetables, etc. I eat it with tartar sauce. 

Now I'm sure you're asking yourself, or the screen in front of you, why I would want to eat fishless fish. 

I'm funny about textures. Both touching my body and touching my tongue. Meat is not high on my list of likable foods to start with. 

I also will not take a step barefoot because I don't like things touching the bottom of my feet. Like tiny bits of dirt, etc.

And when I read about you guys getting a pedi, I must say that will be one thing that I will never do. 

I don't like people touching me. But I especially don't like people touching my feet.

I don't go for manicures either. 

And when I get my hair cut, I tell them first thing not to wash my hair, not to put any sort of hair product in it, and don't dry it.

I can only tolerate their touching my hair/head for a short time. If I could figure out how to cut my own hair, I would do it. But I make a complete mess of things.



The dogs somehow managed to have to have two baths this week. They were not happy campers, as you can see by Abi's expression. 

(I tried to get a pic of Charlie, but he eluded me and kept running off. Like me, he doesn't like to have his photo taken.)



Just look at those curly ringlets! She is mad at me and has turned away.

Okay, I suppose I have expounded enough on the simple things that make up my week. 

What's on your agenda for the weekend?

47 comments

  1. It is sunny and warm here. I am doing anything in the yard I can. I burned leaves in my ditch, picked up sticks and walked my Bella dog. I am making garden signs in my garage and made a wind chime from a old silver coffee pot and some old silverware. I just love playing outside and it will be 68 here in SW Missouri today.

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    1. Well, you've already gotten a lot accomplished!

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  2. Hi Brenda~

    I'm a new reader of your blog, and I find it very refreshing! I like that you are so honest about Aspergers, and about how it affects your daily life. I have a granddaughter who is blind and has a form of autism, which makes it difficult for her to be around too many people. She is very specific about what she will eat, so I totally understand! Anyway, thank you for being so real about your life.

    I also really enjoy your decorating style, very comforting to me. I look forward to reading more of your posts!

    Blessings,
    Barb

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    1. Barb, I'm so glad to meet you! It is difficult for me to be around people for more than about 2 hours. Then I have to have quiet or I just get all wound up and frustrated.

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  3. I want to read that book for sure! I understand a lot of what you say about textures and touching aspects of the Asperger's. So much to learn about how the brain works. I think you are doing great and with your diagnosis it helps to know you aren't strange just different then many but not alone! I love how you are helping Israel, you are a good person Brenda.
    hugs,
    Linda

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    1. Thank you, Linda! People who say that those with Aspergers don't have empathy are off the mark. At least with me. I would say I have too much empathy, because I always jump in and want to help. I think people see different social reactions and judge that inaccurately. Different doesn't mean wrong or less.

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  4. Hi Brenda, wonderful post as always. Your photos are lovely. I recently discovered fishless fillets too and we love them. We have been vegetarians for 23 years and I must admit I did miss fish occasionally. Abi does look rather mad ion her photos! Such curly fur! Our weekend is going to be quiet. I am doing some baking today and plan to read for awhile. Tomorrow a little bit of grocery shopping and a long walk as we are experiencing warm weather for this time of year. I hope you and the pupsters have a great weekend!

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    1. Me and the pupsters will do what we always do. My daily schedule is so familiar to them, that when I vary it, they get a little upset. I am online working on blogging in some capacity 7 days a week from 9-6. Then I do yoga stretching, take a shower or bath, and feed us. Then I typically read.

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  5. I think we all have things that are easy for us and difficult. I cannot do algebra...though I can geometry and foreign languages. You know...we have interesting brains! Some people are chemists and some people are artists...each wishing he/she had a brain that would let them do the other. Though I do not feel the need to learn theoretic algebra. ha! If I were starting all over in my education I believe I would go into architecture...a combo of geometry and art! Love what you can do! As a teacher one of the focus points was to understand that everyone learns differently. As a classroom teacher of French I tried to devise lessons and homework that would let the visual and auditory learners grasp French. It is so much easier now that we have streaming videos etc. a kid can practice their French homework on a smart phone instead of walking to the language laboratory. You know how your brain works...so learn based on your brain learning style. You are a great communicator! A great writer! And a warm soul! ....with a big heart! We all have our limitations and have to work within our skill set/talents I guess. 😊 You have good skills...so as the old song says...accentuate the positive! Have a great weekend! Sheila

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    1. Nice to hear from a teacher! Makes me feel less "unable."

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  6. Brenda, this is the first time commenting to you but I felt drawn to. You see both of my younger children have asperger's and are considered high functioning. So many of your issues sound like each of my children they both have differences one has sensory issues like you and my other one can't handle simple tasks but give him technology and figuring it out he has it to a t.The book you are going to read "Look me in the eye" is a very good book and I have met the man that wrote it. It might help you alot. As for your fish meal and it really not fish can you tell me if you know if someone with seafood allergies can eat it. Something that my son would love but with his seafood allergy he is limited. Also were did you find it. I live out in the country and I probaly won't find it in my little store here. I very much enjoy your blog and tales about your pups and all your decorating and your compassion for your maintenance man. Truly leaves a smile on my face each time I read your blog.

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    1. I just looked and the package of Fishless Fish says "garden grown protein." Go to www.gardein.com, which is the brand. Looking at the ingredients, the closest thing I could find to fish was sea salt! I found it at Walmart, and I pick up several packages at a time because I like it and it is a fast meal. I don't have a stove/oven, so I put it in my Smart Breville convection oven and it's done in about 10 minutes from freezer to plate.

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    2. This is what I found on the website, which is very thorough with answers to questions:
      Gardein is a sustainable protein brand that delivers the great taste, texture and nutrition of meat with no cholesterol, less fat and calories. Gardein makes the widest variety of award-winning meatless meals and snacks that are good for you and good for the planet. These meatless wonders are completely vegan made from non-GMO soy and wheat, ancient grains and veggies. A range of gluten free products are also available.

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  7. I have a 14 year old grandson who is on the spectrum - Asbergers. So I am always reading anything that comes across my path. So very interesting. One article I read was about a fellow in Europe (Sweden I think) who has a company that solely looks for jobs for people with Asbergers. I think that is so cool. Whatever their bend is, he finds them permanent jobs. Companies love it cause these people are really suited to the job they have. I wish there were something like that in Canada or the US. I also think almost everyone has things they are uncomfortable with. My hairdresser and I were talking about it yesterday. She hates being touched or tickled. But she loves cuddling. I on the other hand love it when someone gently tickles my back. My daughter cannot stand the feel of Kleenex or fresh wash towels - it gives her the same feeling as someone running their fingernails down a chalkboard.

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    1. Isn't it interesting to find out about different traits. The first thing I worry about when I meet someone is that they will want to shake hands. And I will do it, but reluctantly. I can't handle loud noises or a cacophony of various noises together. The 4th of July is a nightmare, as I am pretty close to the town's fireworks.

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  8. I have read all the ones you have pictured and I just ordered Defending Jacob per your recommendation! We like the same thing!

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    1. Well, that's eerie. I guess great minds think alike!

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  9. I enjoy your blog very much. I think a Facebook book review would be nice. Although, I don't know if I read the types of books that you would like. My two recent favorites are "All the Light You Cannot See" and "The Boys in the Boat". The latter, was an especially wonderful book, however, I am from the Pacific Northwest and maybe that made it special to me.

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    1. We can't all like the same things. I guess there are discussions going on over at GoodReads, isn't there? I'll have to check all this out. I know there would be others that would prefer your book choices over mine.

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  10. Hi, Brenda! I thought of you this week because Temple Grandin was in our area to hold a conference. (She is one of the foremost authorities on autism and I trust her opinions as she has Aspergers herself.) Have you happened to have read anything by or about her? Fascinating woman!

    I loved the tidbits of your week. Miss Abi is too cute even when she is mad. :-) Bless you for helping Israel. If we all looked after each other, the world would be such a better place. Have a lovely weekend!

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    1. I have one of Temple Grandin's books. But I haven't read it all the way through yet.

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  11. I think the sensory issues are a part of what you have. We all probably have at least one. Abi looks like she is smirking at you, hah. Do they have a gluten free fish less fish.
    At one of our grinds basketball game there was a young girl, maybe 12, that had autism. My one son had been her teacher. He wasn't at this game but my other son was. Since the guys look alike she was just all giggly. She walked over to me and asked what color my wedding dress was. So cute. Then she curtsied with her dress. I watched as she watched the 1st graders play. She was so happy smiling and laughing.
    I

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    1. I saw on the website that they gluten-free foods, but don't know about the fish. The noise of the basketball game didn't bother the little girl?

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  12. I have not read that book but I just jotted it down. I hope that your handyman can become a citizen and that the complex takes better care of him and gets him some heat in his shed.
    I love having my feet massaged or my hands massaged. For me it is very relaxing.
    Hope you have a good weekend, Brenda. xo Diana

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    1. Well with what you've currently got on your plate, you need to go get them massaged to help with the stress.

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  13. Fishless fish - how bizarre! I do like veggie burgers so perhaps I would like that product also. It's interesting to me how you can eat the Sam food every day for two years - as you know, that wouldn't work at all for a foodie like me! But I'm taking the night off from cooking tonight as I worked my day off yet again today. Sweetie will bring us dinner, which is just what I need tonight. I just finished the book I was reading "Mrs Mike" and I'm excited to start a new one. I'm going to browse my kindle to see what I've got loaded in there!

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    1. You are correct. We are complete opposites when it comes to food.

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  14. Love Anthony and Silent Sister were both good reads. Of course, we all like different books. Those are just good reads and nothing psychological/thriller type. Will be interesting to see your opinion of them.

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  15. Since your post the other day, I made a note to look for Defending Jacob--and after this post, I picked it up today--I'm anxious to start reading! (Have you already read that Lisa Scottoline book, Keep Quiet? I like that one and her stuff a lot)

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    1. Yes, I've read Keep Quiet. Love Lisa Scottoline's books!

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  16. Brenda I love reading about you and Israel :)

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    1. I'm sure some find it odd. But he really is a good soul with a big heart.

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  17. Let us know what you think about the book " A silent Sister". I have that one and a couple of others, on my wish list at Amazon, and don't know which one to read next. Love your blog, love the two sweet dogs, and love how you are living your life...in your very cute apartment, decorating it like no bodies business. Also, helping out Israel, You are Awesome!!!

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    1. I started Love Anthony last night. It hasn't gripped me so far like Defending Jacob did. But any book after Defending Jacob would have to be phenomenal.

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  18. First of all: I am laughing at Abi because she really does look mad - haha!

    I haven't read any of those books you have but I love your book collection. Stacked books always look great to me.

    Cool picture of that Cardinal. We don't have them here in Utah. I am bummed about that but we have these cute white and black finches that are pretty loyal about visiting my bird feeder.

    Have a good weekend!

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    1. Abi is known for her many expressions and the way she "smiles."

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  19. Three words: Carbon monoxide poisoning. Sitting in a car with a running engine is not a good solution. As always, I enjoyed your post today

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    1. Thank you! At least he is in the open. I go over and check on him from time to time.

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  20. You know what? Last night I read your "New? Start Here" Section, even though I'm not new, just a newer commenter....and really enjoyed it......and today your post tells me even more. Great Post. And since we're talking about our differences in the comments, I'm an empath. I didn't know there was a title for it until I was looking old school in the library for an answer to how my daughter was feeling when she was little. Then I realized we're both empaths. Thanks for asking about our weekend. I had a friend come by (planned) and stay for 5 1/2 hours! I guess that was my Saturday! Who knew?

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    1. Well, there went your day! I'm sure you enjoyed it though. I googled empath last night, but the site I was trying to go to was down.

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    2. You know, she's a good friend, so I did.....until I didn't. Haha.. And to be an empath means that you empathize with others, as in absorbing what people's vibe is "putting out" when you walk into a party and walk up to a group of people. (just one example) If it's negative, it's a tough go. There are other sensitivities, too but this is the biggest problem for me.

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  21. Well on the feet front Brenda I am totally opposite to you and love to walk barefoot and feel what is beneath my feet. So, after the feet operation before Christmas and having to have huge bandages on my feet for two weeks was my absolute nightmare! I had to laugh at the fishless fish, it's a bit like vegetarian bacon - why?! :) Today I am decluttering my in box and getting some structure into my social media world so that everything is beautifully colour coded. I am VERY obsessional about order and it drives my family mad. Love your post and yes, why didn't they listen to you in the first place! Have a great Sunday x

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    1. Most food tastes too salty to me. But veggie food, like Fishless fish and Veggie burgers, don't see to be as salty.

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  22. I think we all have things with our brains that don't show. I have a problem visualizing 3 dimensional things. I sew and sometimes that is a problem. I, also, am no crazy about being touched. I have a mentally retarded daughter and she is quite smart in some areas. Her IQ is less than 10, so low it can't be measured but when I had a baby, she was very protective, she knew he needed constant attention and could be hurt if she tried to hug him. She will not touch a baby until they can walk, talk and yell. How many normal children would know that at 3 years old??

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  23. I think we all have things with our brains that don't show. I have a problem visualizing 3 dimensional things. I sew and sometimes that is a problem. I, also, am no crazy about being touched. I have a mentally retarded daughter and she is quite smart in some areas. Her IQ is less than 10, so low it can't be measured but when I had a baby, she was very protective, she knew he needed constant attention and could be hurt if she tried to hug him. She will not touch a baby until they can walk, talk and yell. How many normal children would know that at 3 years old??

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