A-Z Disability Challenge | K : Why Kids Should Be Educated About The Various Types Of Disabilities

When I was busy coming up with the letters and their themes, I was a little worried whether it would be a good idea to basically talk about children and how they view people with disabilities twice. After discussing it with my mom, she pretty much convinced me that it would be interesting to speak up on different ages, because as I’ve found out over the years, children under the ages of 5 are curious of their surroundings but they want to learn about everything! Kids in that are higher in age and in school may hang out with friends that can influence them to bully other kids. So, this is what we will be talking about on today’s post!

I remember when I was in grade school, we were all in separate classes for all of our subjects. The only time you basically got to see the other students was at lunch and recess. I knew at the time that there was one other kid with a disability, we never saw each other but only on the occasional field trips and grandparent’s programs. That was it! So, I was hardly ever around somebody that was remotely like me, until I had my surgeries in 2002.

The reason why I bring this up is because throughout my entire time in elementary school, I was basically taught to be like everyone else. I never really experienced any bullying although there was one girl who didn’t like me, but we were at least civil with each other. Anyways, I grew up actually hating to be around other kids with disabilities, because they acted differently than me and my friends–now of course, I feel horrible thinking that way but that was my mindset back then; I wasn’t like them but yet I was!

You can never really tell what a kid thinks about things unless they tell you, but when they don’t ask you questions, they will almost go through life not knowing the real answers. They will begin to seek them through their friends, and you hope that everything those kids have been taught are saying good things but unfortunately not all children are being told that having a disability of any kind can be a beautiful thing. Instead they are fearful by what they don’t understand and relying on that information to others.

I always wished that there were more motivational speakers that came to schools with a variety of disabilities. Unfortunately, I also worry if this were to happen, if they would appericate it because I know everytime we had people come in and talk with us, it would literally go in one ear and out in the other. However, there is that small chance that a few kids that enjoy learning about everything, so it could be a positive experience as well!

I think it would be useful for these youngsters to see a plethora of differences in their bodies, we are not going to look like athletes or supermodels, and it’s important to remember that at any age!

I had a thought the other night about this subject. For some reason, all of the speakers that came to talk to us were all adults. What if kids saw teenagers or someone in their early 20’s? If I saw more women and talking about her disability, I wonder if that would have made a difference because I didn’t learn how to love myself until two years after I graduated from high school altogether. It really sucks to know that not only .did I have to be away from my classmates and watch X-Men: First Class to feel like I can love being the way that I am!

When you were in school, how did you view the speakers that came to talk about the aftermath of drunk-driving or their disabilities? Do you think there should be more people talking about other topics that could be helpful to children as they continue to get older?

Top 13 Taylor Swift Songs!

Howdy!

Back in mid-June I posted a question on my Twitter to all of the Taylor Swift fans, on what they’re favorite ‘underrated’ song was by the lovely T. Swift. Unfortunately, I never got any feedback on it, but this came about after I had a great afternoon of listening to her music on both my iPod and YouTube. I felt there were a lot of great songs that weren’t as popular or in some cases made their way to radio. So, I thought about creating a blog post of all of my favorite songs from the albums that I really love the most.

Since Taylor Swift has the thing about the number 13, I figure it was only right to create this list of songs in that exact number. Also, what is coming up soon? Her new album “Lover” will be releasing next month. I am a little nervous, but that’s how I’ve been since probably “Speak Now” came out. So, we’ll just have to see what happens!

If I end up like doing this post, I might talk about my other favorites by Britney Spears, Backstreet Boys, Christina Aguilera, and others in the future. What do you think, is that something you would be interested in?


Cold As You

I remember the first time I ever got Taylor Swift’s album. Of course, I listened to the singles that were increasingly becoming popular with half of my friends at school, but there were two songs out of the lineup that I actually loved just as much.

This one was light, but had a mysterious tone to it. That’s what mainly drew me into it at first, but then after I actually listened to it, I began to understand the lyrics and I really thought it went well with my outlook of high school, especially around the boys. They weren’t cruel, I just didn’t understand why they weren’t looking at me more than just a friend. Now as I’m older, I realize how much of an idiot I was, chasing after these poor boys, but thankfully I can still listen to the song and love singing it.

The Outside

As the previous song has a sadder sound to it, this one is the total opposite. It’s a fun song, which is probably why I liked it so much in early 2007. I still have trouble figuring out if it’s a breakup or just a cheery song. I’ve listened to it for an awful long time and I’m still trying to figure things out! I don’t know if that’s good or not.

You Belong With Me

If there was a song that reflected any part of my high school experience, it would be this one. For about three years, this was my go-to, especially football season since majority of the guys I liked played it. The song itself has sports involved because she’s talking about being the one sitting on the sidelines while he was interested in the cheerleader type of girl, like my sister. Once I graduated, it was shocking how many guys that I liked, and who were even a grade higher than me trying to get with my sister. She was a cheerleader too, so it was like the song was playing out in front of me for a good five years or so!

Breathe

“Breathe” was a song that took me a while to enjoy. I really love Colbie Calliet’s music so I always thought it was strange that I wasn’t as into it. I do seek out the softer songs, it’s not very often of course, but I am a fan of them whenever I am in a somber mood.

This has the ballad quality, but it is definitely a lot softer in everything. At this time, Taylor was still making true country music, but with this song you really couldn’t tell that it was different from the rest, because of how gentle it was. I like to think of it as the calm before the storm, because it would two more albums before she felt ready to branch out of the genre and create more pop oriented songs.

Change

I don’t know about you, but I love really motivational songs. They’re not as popular as the sassy, breakup songs that she has made over the years, but they are great to keep on hand. As “You Belong With Me” became my anthem for dealing with the guys, this was my jam for getting through everything in life. Since this album came out while I was a Junior, it really hit home for me because I was struggling a lot with school work and everything in between. It sucked for the first six months, but I know listening to this on repeat helped a lot. It kept me on the path I had created for not only myself but for others like me. So, I endured the hell I went through, thanks to this song!

The Story Of Us

I am known to take forever to like songs or a genre. It does happen eventually, well sometimes! The album that this was on, I have never enjoyed as much as the others. She was increasingly going into the world of pop so I was very hesitate to follow her in that direction. Honestly, I still feel the same way everytime she gears up to release a new album!

I don’t remember how I got into this song, I feel like it’s fair to say my sister might’ve had something to do with it, but it also could have been playing on the radio suddenly and took a late chance on it; any of those are good possibilities! It does give me the same vibes as “Love Story” so that is one thing I love about it! You have a fast pace, but sweet type of song that a lot of people enjoy, some at the time it came out or years down the road!

We Are Never Getting Back Together

After I explained above that I am not the best at listening to a track and like it in that first try, I should probably confess that every once in a blue moon, I allow myself to dive into one and instantly fall in love with it. This is one of those songs as I just loved this song! Again, it was itching farther out of the country sound but it still had that sassiness that almost everyone loves about Taylor’s music. Another part of it that I really liked was how catchy it was, the lyrics were fun and you could be as animated while singing along as you wanted and not feel ashamed to show that side of yourself. It allowed you to let yourself go crazy, even though it’s a total breakup song!

Welcome To New York

The “1989” album was one that my sister bought while she was at college, she had a car with a CD outlet, so was still using the heck of it and I remember when she said something about it on her Twitter, my reply to that tweet was “Sweet! Please bring it with you when you get home so I can put it on my iPod!”

As with all of Taylor’s albums, I don’t like every single song on it, but the fact that this was first song out the gate, I was enjoyed it! What really made in a way was by the time I started liking it, it was being overplayed on the radio and on TV! I know a lot of fans like saying they loved a song before it became popular, I have found it to be extremely heartbreaking because if I hear a song too much and that can happen, especially if you’re not the one doing it to yourself. That’s how I’ve lost interest in a lot of music over the years unfortunately!

All You Had To Do Was Stay

Thankfully, this track was never made into a single. I could have this one all to myself, and I still relish in it every time I listen to it on my iPod. Yes, some of us still use those things!

I think I found this song at the perfect time because I was dealing with some personal things in my life with somebody wanting to leave and come back as if nothing happened. The first time it occurred, I was a wreck, and it happened again, this song was on repeat. I’m not going to lie when I say, I cried a lot when this song and those memories collided, but now I can actually listen to it in peace.

I Did Something Bad

Despite saying I have never liked every song off her albums, you definitely wouldn’t believe me after the next four songs! I really loved “Reputation” because of how dark and different it was compared to her previous albums!

As I don’t exactly remember all of my favorites after the first listen, this was one track that I definitely loved but I think it had some help as it was the third track on the lineup, after both “Ready For It” and “Endgame” so the pop-y, but hard hitting type of sound was still present, and I thought that was excellent to keep those vibes going on a little bit longer. I really enjoy singing to this, it brings out my sassy side a lot!

Don’t Blame Me

I feel like I would have loved these next three songs when I first listened to the album the week it came out on Spotify! Unfortunately, it wasn’t until they were featured on her Reputation concert that came out on Netflix last December. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve watched it!

I like this though, I really approve of the sultry vibe you get with Taylor’s vocals. They’re soft and it helps that the lyrics are easy to learn too, so it’s fun song to listen to by yourself and relish with the thought of someone who’ve been talking to, or in my case scroll through my Pinterest board of hot men. Hey, whatever works I say!

So It Goes

I was a little bummed at the fact that Taylor did not perform this song on stage, but I actually fell in love with it at the credits, so explain that one to me?

“So It Goes” has this sexy tone to it, and the lyrics really establish it as that kind of song but I don’t think its too much. I like the fact that she is shedding that goody-too-shoes image and unleashing this other part of her that is all woman. So, despite the fact that her audience is still young, she’s not keeping everything rated “G” anymore.

Dress

This is another one with a very seductive take, I am actually very addicted to this song! I mean, between the two songs, this is probably the most subjective track of my list but that’s what I’ve grown to like for some odd reason. The only thing I don’t like about it is how her voice sounds somewhat hoarse, as it is almost breathless throughout, and usually I would be fine with this, I just wish she’d let up on it a bit. Over than that, it deserves to be apart of this list!

Are you or were a fan of Taylor’s music? Do you have a favorite album? Can you number your favorite 13 songs?

Baby Name Tag – Round 2!

Howdy!

Today I am doing another baby names tag! I found out that Gabriella had uploaded a second name tag video back in late November, and I started thinking about doing something special. The first part of this are her questions she put in the video, but I’ve also added on my own questions too. I’ve only written out five more at the bottom for your enjoyment!

I also decided how cool it would be, if I did three separate baby name posts to coincide with another tag I’d publish on my blog’s Facebook page from the months April to October. Somehow I came up with it in literally two days! I was somewhat impressed and terrified of myself at the same time! I’ve already published the first post back in late March, just before The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were due to have their first child. If you haven’t seen that post, you can go here. By this time, I will be at the letter “M’ or “O” on the ABC Baby Names Tag on Facebook.  If you want to go back through and check out the names I picked out for the previous letters, you are more than welcome to do that too! The link for that is right here. First though, let’s start this tag while I’ve still got your attention! The final post will be going up either at the end of September or October, so you’ll have to look out for that too!

What is your favorite name from the FRIENDS cast?

I have always loved Phoebe and Rachel. I’m surprised that I’ve never cared for any of the guys’s names, even Joey!

If you had Triplets and you had to choose 3 winter themed names, what would they be?

I really like Winter a lot, it’s one of my favorite girl names. Since I am a big fan of trees, I think Pine would be a really interesting name to give a little girl. Lastly, I have to say I really like Noel too, but only for a boy. It’s different but gives you that cheery feeling just saying it!

If you had triplets and you had to choose 3 summer themed names, what would they be?

I really adore the name Summer, but I would rather use it for a boy than a girl. I have a really good combination that is neutral and its Summer Brighton. I also love the name Ocean, but honestly the variation: Oceane is better for me. I know it’s not pronounced the same as the original, but I’d rather have this spelling for a girl. And my final (weird) name is Palm, and again, we’re playing into the tree element. I like my trees damn it! I think it could work for both sexes.

What is your favorite typically English baby name?

There are honestly a lot of really pretty names out there, but I have always been interested in both Edgar and Nigel. I don’t really know if they are English at all but I’ve always seen them feature in British films in the past, so that’s how I’ve associated them, please correct me if I’m wrong!

What are some non-negotiable names that you love?

I think I’ve finally decided on three names that I will use on some level, whether it’s my future children or as a character in one of my stories, but they are David, Mason, and Ruth. Both David and Ruth are family names that mean a lot to me and I’ve always said to myself that I would use them as middle names. Mason is a name that I have loved since probably 2005!

If you had to choose names from your favorite movie, what would they be?

I grew up on the Back To The Future franchise so I have a love for the name “Emmett”. I think the main reason why I enjoy it so much is because it reminds me of my sister, since her name is Emily, I feel like it is as close to that as humanly possible. I’ve searched for others that start with “Em” but this is the only one I’ve liked and the fact that it was used in one of my favorites movies, is just an added bonus too!

Another name that I like, is fairly new to me, because I’ve only ever heard it on this movie series. I love the Hotel Transylvania films and from the first time I heard the name “Mavis” I was hooked! Since in those movies, Mavis is the daughter of the character Dracula, I do associate it as a semi-dark and mysteries name, but I also think it’s really playful too. And the fact that it’s a “M” name that makes things better, as I would like to continue the letter for my first born daughter.

If you had to use a name from your phone contacts, what would it be?

The only ones that I really like (name wise) are Christopher, Samantha, and Russell.

I’ve always loved the name Christopher, and whenever I talk about my cousin, I actually call him that rather than Chris like the rest of my family. Speaking of family, our close family friend, who is like my uncle has the name Russell. I like it for it’s 60’s and 70’s vibe. I’m not calling you old by the way if you’re reading this! Kate Hudson has a son with the name Ryder Russell and I’ve always loved those two names together so if I could I would definitively use this combination!

Now with the name Samantha, back in the 90’s it was a very common name for girls. I have known a large amount of girls with it growing up, but I still love it! I don’t know if I found this or came up with it myself, but I really like it with Claire; I think it works as a first and middle name, but my favorite way is Claire Samantha. What do you think?

What double-barreled name would you consider?

Since I found this tag, I’ve actually created a large amount of double-barreled names. The two that are like at the top of my favorites list are Avril-Hayden Morgan and Felix-Henry William.

The first one has been on my list for both b/g since probably 2006. I found inspiration for it by my love of both singer Avril Lavigne and actress Hayden Pentitiare. As for the middle, it was my great-grandmother’s maiden name but it was also used for my papaw’s middle name as well. That’s why I think it could work out both ways! Felix-Henry is fairly recent for me, ever since we named one of our cats Felix I have grown to love it more and you know, with my love for history, I am always looking for create ways to use the name Henry and William, so I decided to put it here.

I thought it would be nice if I shared a couple of ones for girls, so I have made up Daisy-Kate Elizabeth and Sadie-Jordyn Elizabeth. As you can see, I really love my middle name a LOT!  What do you also think of these pairings?

What Disney themed names would you pick for a boy/girl?

Disney names are SO difficult for me! However, I love the name “Ariel” but only for a boy. Apparently it’s an angel based in both Jewish and Christianity traditions. The way that I came across it was because a character in the symphonic metal band Kamelot’s album (that I cannot remember at this moment), the character itself was portrayed as a male so that’s how I ended up loving it.

The other one that I really like is “Elsa.” I am a lover of Scandinavian names here recently, but the reason why I love it the most is because I have a great-great-great aunt that used it as part of her name, her full name was Elsaleah. Unfortunately, Elsa has never be used in the future generations, probably because it is has grown really popular after the success of the movie Frozen, but Leah has shown up with a couple of family members. I would like to use both Elsa or Elsaleah because I think they’re so pretty!

What would you name a brunette, blonde and red haired child?

BRUNETTE: Sienna June. BLONDE: India Catherine. RED-HAIRED: Rowena Carrie.

BRUNETTE: Harvest Roy. BLONDE: Bjorn William. REDHAIRED: Hamish Michael.

What are your favorite country/city themed names?

I REALLY enjoy city/country names, at times probably a little too much, but that keeps me interesting!

My favorite girl names are Georgia, Israel, Vienna, India, Petra, Adelaide, Victoria, Brisbane, Manhattan, London, Jersey, Alberta, Italia, Savannah, Marseilles, Brittany, Sahara, Essex, & Arizona. Apparently I like a lot of places ending with “ia” and I didn’t even know it!

Boys are always more difficult for me for some reason, but I love Austin, Columbus, Diego, Boston, Bronx, Camden, Charleston, Houston, Orlando, Paris, Richmond, Manchester, Nevada, Rio, Trenton, York.

And just for fun here are some unisex names too! I really love Berlin, Brooklyn, Dallas, Denver, Hamilton, Ireland, Dakota, Jordan, Memphis, Paris, and Kingston.

If you had to pick a Harry Potter themed baby name, which would you pick?

This is a hard one! The first one that comes to my mind is Luna. Luna Lovegood is one of my favorite female characters, but I also love both Minerva and Narcissa. As far as the boy names, Remus was my favorite adult/teacher, but Neville and Seamus are really cute too!  

If you had to use one of your friends’ names, which would it be?

There are only two that I can think of right now, and they are Samantha and Desiree. I kind of explained Samantha above, but I like it for its 70’s vibe and the Southern charm it brings out. However, I think I only love Desiree as it has this French flare to it. 

What are your favorite space themed names for a boy/girl?

I’ve always had a love/hate relationship with space themed names, but there is Luna, which means “Moon” in Italian. I  don’t have a favorite boy name at the moment.

Choose a boy and girl name based on Greek Mythology

I think Greek mythology is a little easier compared to other mythologies, than maybe Egyptian mythology but that might be because I have always been obsessed with Ancient Egypt since I was little! Anyways, I love Athena for a girl, it’s one of my favorites ever! Now for boys, it’s a little bit difficult but I’m always pulled to Ares or Jason than any other name. 

What is your favorite name that was popular in a different era?

I have three favorite eras: Tudor, Roaring 20’s, and 1970’s. So I’ll give you 6 names from each time.

Let’s start with Tudor times, we have Henry (of course!), Edmund, Richard, Anne, Bridget, and Lettice on my list. Lettice is pronounced like “lettuce” but I actually prefer “lat-tis” like when you’re making a lattice for a pie. I think that way sounds more feminine compared to the other way. For the Roaring 20’s, there is Bernard, Norman, Sidney, Ada, Gloria, and Olive. And my final six favorites coming out of the 1970’s are Michael, Brian, Scott, Jennifer, Stephanie, and Sarah.

If you had to choose a famous brand to name your child, what would you pick?

Honestly, I think Forbes is really cute. Since it was used as a last name on The Vampire Dairies for the character Caroline, I thought it just flowed so nicely together, but if I actually used it I would put it with a boy name instead. The other one that I really love is Dior. I love this, but I’d also use it in a boy name. I fell in love with Nevada Dior a long time ago, I still think it was my first outlandish name I ever came up with before! 

What is a name that you’d normally pick for your dog or cat, that you’d use for your own child?

The majority of our pets have had people names, so that has been both a blessing and curse at the same time! Especially when my sister was pregnant with my nephew, she really wanted to use Oliver, but my mom threatened to call him “mew-mew” like we did with our family cat Oliver, so that’s the reason why they switched to Nolan.

I don’t know if you agree with this or not, but I think cats should have a regal sort of name. They carry themselves higher than any other animal, so I think they deserve a sophisticated type of name. Unfortunately, only a handful of our cats have ever had smart names in the past and even the present too! We have had names like Selene, Oliver, Oscar, Otis, Felix, Tavis, and Nelson. 

What is your favorite royalty name(s)?

You can tell I created this question! I think I’ll just give you a great collection of names because what I originally wanted to give you all would make this post super long, so I hope you’ll like this instead.

My favorite royal names are: Elizabeth, George, Henry, Charles, Alexander, Anne, Margaret, Carl, Augusta, Victoria, Alexandra, Louise, Catherine, Antoinette, Xaveria, Claude, Philip, Alice, Mary, Estelle, Gabriel, Henrik, James, Irene, Isabella, Leonore, Nicholas, Oscar, Edmund, Richard Alix, Albert, Irene, Therese, Wilhelmina, Charlotte, Helena, Ernest., Theodora, Marie-Chantal, Arabella, Josephine, Louis, Paul, Maud, Jane, Frederick, Augustus, Mathilde, Maxima, Henrietta, Leopold, Arthur, Michael, Harald, Joan, Thyra, Dagmar, Anastasia, Olga, Blanche, Madeleine, Birgitta, Hedvig, Catharina, Magnus and Friederike.  

What are your Top 10 names that you love but probably will never use?

Alexandrine | Siobhan | Nicah | Salima Honor | Nevada | Leopold | Thaddeus | Calix | Atlas 

All right I am finally finished with this tag! This actually took me longer to do then I figured it would, it made part of me wish I had worked on it earlier on like I wanted to, but yeah it was really fun like always. If you are interested in baby names, I definitely recommend doing it too! If you do, please let me know I would love to see your answers! 

 

A-Z Disability Challenge | J : Just Watch Me

Hello.

I don’t think people will ever understand the importance of this phrase. It is like Nike’s motto, but it’s more straight forward. Whenever you say it that means you already know you’re going to do it, there’s no use of trying to talk you out of it. While the other is telling you to do something, you’re still liable to think about it and see whether or not if you need to do it.

For people with various types of disabilities, this is like embed into their brains. It’s definitely been into my head for what feels like forever. There is nothing like proving people wrong, and I always strive for that opportunity to look at someone and not necessarily say it to their faces, “do not underestimate me.” It’s the most amazing rush, as it’s second to being an adrenaline junkie, which a lot of us will put the two together and that is usually a recipe for both excitement and disaster, but we normally don’t go looking for that other part!

I think a lot of people can learn from people with disabilities, especially if they have a physical disability. We tend to push ourselves harder, because it’s not all about proving others wrong, we’re also trying to prove us wrong too. Our bodies get weaker the older we become because that’s part of life, but sometimes once we realize we’re missing out on something or losing an ability that helps us to do things can help build up our strength within and we try to change it for the better!

Here is something to keep in mind:

There is one thing that I need to speak up about first, we do have our limitations like everybody else. Sometimes those limits need to be tested of course, but it’s all about patience. Nothing you do will come to you overnight. If you’re like me, you’ll be up all night trying to come up other ways to complete something! I do not like to throw in the towel as some people would say but if none of my plans work, there is no shame in letting go. This is a harsh thing to think about, because we as humans hardly ever want to accept defeat, and when it comes to disabled people, it certainly feels like the universe is letting us down. If something is not working out for you, you can either think of it in another perspective or you have to leave it in peace.

When I lost the ability to get myself onto my bed or couch by myself, it was the worst feeling in the world because to me, that was my main thing I could do if I wanted to get out of my floor or room in general. It does continue to hurt (mentally) every once in a while, and in the last few years my parents have been losing their strength in being able to lift me off the floor, and that means I am not able to do anything on the floor like I used to. I don’t like to accept something I can no longer accomplish on my own, but I am able to look at it in a different way, because now that we’ve moved into our new house, I am getting out of my room a lot more because there is so much space between rooms. Being able to move around in my wheelchairs is as good as scooting, plus there’s a lot less pain in my back and hips too!

How are you with proving people wrong with your limited abilities? What is your mindset whenever you cannot do something that you’ve worked so hard to finish?

Nolan’s 1st Party!

Hello!

Last weekend we celebrated my nephew’s first birthday with a big party! It’s been a long time since I have been at his house. I told my mom that he had to been around three months at the time, because Brandon and I were watching Black Panther after it just came out on DVD. It was very difficult to keep my eyes on the screen and not on a certain little baby in the pack-n-play! He was surprisingly very good for us, until towards the ending where he wanted to be fed quickly and he wasn’t – he wasn’t very happy! He has yet to grow out of that by the way!

The theme of the party had changed a few times over the coming months, but ultimately they decided on one thing: Llamas! So, in March, my sister found him this cute little llama stuffed toy at the store for Easter and he apparently liked it so much that she set out to find other items to fit in that theme, thus making the entire party about llamas. The only thing that wasn’t in a llama shape was the cake, although she did try to find someone to make one for her back in May!

One of my favorite things that had llamas on it, were our shirts that Blondie found for us. Both sides of the family were given customize T-Shirts of a black silhouette of a llama with whatever we are to Nolan. For example, I am his “auntie” so that’s what I got on mine, but both of his grandmothers have different names. My mom is “Mimi” while Brandon’s mom is “Grammie” to him. I have always had a small stack of tops that fit perfectly on my shoulders and if there was a special design on the front, it isn’t blocked by my hands the whole time the stack was even smaller! I’m very glad to tell you that I can add this to the pack! You can see everything, I love it so much!

My mom and I were the first ones to get there. I was greeted by Chipper and the cats. Chipper was SO excited to see us, but the look on Nolan’s face when he realized that Mimi was the one waking him up from a nap in his crib, was so cute! He was so surprised! He looked stunned when he found out I was there too! We were there about 10 minutes before my dad and our “uncle” Russell came over. Nolan was very happy to see his papaw! He just wrapped his small arms around his neck (and beard) and my dad was all too happy to deny him. Nolan was a little unsure about Russell at first but after a couple of minutes, he actually asked to be held by him and it was so adorable.

They were originally supposed to have 30+ people coming to the party, but since we were under a Tornado warning all afternoon, we were happy with the small get together instead. It was an interesting mix of people though, the best thing was everybody got along perfectly! We ate food, chit-chat with one another, played with Nolan. Our friend Jayde, who is expecting her first baby boy later this year, ate around three cupcakes. She and I made a deal that she could have the cupcakes and I can have the broccoli. I love broccoli! She fully agreed to that! I’m actually shocked on how little I snacked though, because I’m known to eat quite a bit at parties but there wasn’t a lot of room for me to eat by myself or have my mom feed me easily without being in the way of little guy eating his strawberries in his high chair! Honestly, I made myself a deal at the end of the party, I was going to have one vanilla cupcake. I did get my cupcake, but I almost regretted it on the way home…

After everybody grabbed a seat, we decided it was time to open some presents. He got a LOT of interesting toys for his birthday! The first one that “he” opened was from his Grammie and his aunties too. Blondie opened the cards first, which is always a nice gesture even though they are usually the last present anybody ever wants to open, because they usually have a message inside that could make you cry in front of your guests. Nolan was another story entirely, he loved his cards! The one that his Grammie got him had shiny glitter inside the number one symbol on the front, so you could essentially shake it like a snow globe and everything will move around. He literally did not want to put it down! It was in his right hand during the rest of the unwrapping.

These are some of the gifts that I could remember of the party.

  • A small red and blue slide (that was wrapped in Batman paper! I loved it, and I’m not a big fan of him either!)
  • A large stack of different summery clothes.
  • Bubble making lawn mower
  • Tool bench and belt full of tools he’ll need to fix my ‘broken’ wheelchairs
  • A standing drum set
  • A big yellow truck to put all of his toys
  • Paw Patrol trucks with characters of the show
  • A book for bedtime made specifically for him as it has a blond baby named Nolan.

There were a lot more that you will see at in the gallery below. He will certainly be really busy making lots of noises in the next few months! My sister actually sent mom a picture of him standing at the drum kit in the middle of the pack-n-play without any help of the walls after the party was over! We’re getting closer to seeing cutie pie walking around on his own.

Once we were finished with the presents, we moved on watching him eat his smash cake. For this, he had to become semi-naked and as much as he loves being like this, he absolutely hates taking off his clothes! After everything was off, he was placed in his high chair again. I will be inserting the before and after pictures of the cake itself in a minute, but Nolan isn’t necessarily a messy eater, he likes to inspect things so he was really puzzled by this cake at first. He literally only would stick one finger into it at a time. Brandon quickly realized that we’d be here forever if he continues doing this, so to make things go faster, he literally grabbed Nolan’s hands and planted them right into the cake! Nolan was not sure what to do with all of the icing on his hands so he was literally shaking his arms but he actually accepted the fact that it did taste pretty good!

The part that made me remember that I am still teaching him things without even realizing it, was when he started leaning his mouth into the cake. As everybody was laughing and taking pictures at this, I was like “oh, crap!” Whenever I eat in the kitchen, he is at the same level as me, so he can watch me like a hawk, because I do lean into my plate so my tongue can reach everything. So seeing the now one year old mimicking what I do for every breakfast, lunch, and dinner, was pretty cute! He was trying his best to get into it, to the point that my sister actually had to hold the cake up in front of him to reach with his mouth! He’s such a smart cookie!

Once he was done eating the cake–well, actually his mommy had to take it away from him! He wasn’t very happy about that, but after he was basically washed down with many, many wipes, he was rewarded with his new toys! He quickly went back to his tool belt and started waving it around in the air. This was also the time where half of the guests were leaving to go home. Russell and dad were one of the firsts to leave because we needed them to be ready to get back into the house, which was a fun mini adventure on its own!

My mom and I left about 10 minutes later, but we were going to get food from Applebee’s and it was roughly a 20-25 minute wait to pick everything up, we decided to go look at the expensive houses in town. I’ve been watching Property Brothers like crazy lately so this was my jam! However between the two of us, we realized how different our tastes in houses were as far as exterior design goes! I still love my ranch-style houses, but even I started finding some of these larger houses to be very beautiful, especially that Tudor house! Once our 20 minutes were up, we went to pick up our food and eventually made our way home!

I had an awesome time spending the day with a great bunch of people, and what I think really made it better was the fact that after the small storm we had, the sky actually perked up. It was sunny again, which was really nice considering how much rain we’ve had in the last couple of weeks or so! I also had lots of fan watching my little nephew enjoy time with each family and friends as well!

What do you think is the most weirdest theme for a birthday? What did you think of my day too?

A-Z Disability Challenge | I : The Real Definition of the Word “Inspiration”

Hello!

Today we will talking about a rather touchy subject, and that is the word “inspiration” when it is used to describe a person with a disability. I’d also like to say a warning before we continue on with the post because I tend to get a little angry with this topic, but only for that it’s super important to show others that because we have disabilities that we do not strive to be an inspiration to anyone. So, I’m hoping you’ll understand where I’m coming from as a person and be able to respect that.

So let’s start with the definition of the word, and I used the first thing that popped up on Google for this.

A person or thing that inspires.”

The synonyms include “influence and muse” and the first things that came to mind after seeing these two words were: art and blogging. An artist can have a muse or multiple of them for he/she to find a sense of creativity that might be lacking for a piece. Now anybody that is using a platform to promote a product is a Influencer, whether they are a blogger or YouTuber, that is the term that’s generally used online. These are real and true ways to describe a person, but it says nothing for people with disabilities, because there isn’t a word for us. We don’t fit in that box and that is the one thing we’re perfectly fine with too!

For us, it’s all about adaptability. We’ve had to find ways to figure out how to do things on our own without any help. If we want to be independent this is what we have to do in order to achieve that way of life.

Unfortunately, it’s usually the little things that gives us the most praise. For me, it was always my art or being able to grab things in various sizes with my feet. When I was in school, I did enjoy the attention I was getting in art class, but once I got into middle school, if you had the talent you were basically taught to seek out perfection, and whenever I couldn’t get there in the same amount of time as my peers, it really hurt me mentally. It actually took about three or four years after I graduated just to feel comfortable to do art again, mostly painting, and I never enjoyed doing that in school so that worked out well!

When it comes to doing things with my feet out in public, it always a depends on my mood, sometimes I don’t care who sees what I can do, but there are also times where I can sense somebody is watching me. Now I don’t mind children or elderly people staring at me or asking questions, but it’s everybody in between that annoys the crap out of me because that’s when I usually hear the word often. As much as I’d like to look at them and say, “I’m not here to inspire or motive you!” I usually give them a nod or smile to them because I know they’re not doing it to hurt my feelings, but when you’ve heard it pretty much your whole life, it’s the least compliment you’d ever want to receive, okay?

So what can you say when you’re standing or watching next to someone who has a disability that you find fascinating? Honestly, there isn’t the perfect solution to this, but my advice is you could smile at them. A simple smile to a person usually makes them happy, so if you notice something a person is doing that’s “inspirational” just give them a smile as a way to say “what you are doing is absolutely amazing!” This will make that person feel so much better, because you’re not focusing all of that unwanted attention on them for something that they had to learn to do at some point in their lives.

I hope you enjoyed this post and take my advice the next time you’re around a person with a disability. Please be respectful to one another, that’s all you really need to do! 🙂

 

 

A-Z Disability Challenge | H : Asking For Help

Yes, I am going to try to get back to my A-Z Disability Challenge! I have been kicking myself for not doing it for so long but I think I am finally ready to start on it again. If you have missed any of the other letters, I have them at the bottom of this post so you can check them out afterwards.

This week I will be talking about the notion of asking for help. Although it is a fairly popular topic of other disability bloggers and YouTubers out there, I think it’s a good idea to have many pieces out there for people of different generations in multiple point of views to help people learn more about what they should do if they ever found themselves in a situation where they want to help, but are not sure on what to say or do at the time.

I will be firstly talking about why a disabled person will probably never ask for help. It’s honestly a mixture of things, I think the most important reason is because we don’t want to look weak. We actually love doing things for ourselves. Every ounce of independence we get, we relish in it for as long as possible. However, the day it runs out, it is a heartbreaking day. For example, after I had my back surgeries in 2002, I wasn’t able to jump back into my regular physical therapy, we did a lot of moving around and my body wasn’t used to all of that yet. Our main objective for me to learn consisted of how to transfer from wheelchair to couch, chairs and toilet. I finally re-learned how to transfer again two years after I recovered. Unfortunately I never learned how to get on my bed by myself, which was probably the biggest blow out of the whole thing. I can scoot down off, but I do not have the strength to pull myself back up anymore.

If you were raised like me, you basically had full rein on what you could do, and it made you feel “normal” for once. We love to challenge ourselves in our daily lives. and being able to learn something new is the biggest drug we can seek out. Unfortunately, some of these challenges can be more complicated with some of our limited movements. So, we can sometimes be slower than not only we would like, but for other people too. I’ve realized in the recent years is that our families are usually the ones that have the lowest points of patience of the bunch for some odd reason! They don’t like to see us struggling, especially our fathers, so they want to “help” us. What they don’t know is that they’re doing more harm, as it is better for us to learn how to complete a task than leaving it for someone else.

I do understand the reason why people feel like they should help us. Even though you should always ask that person if you can lend a hand, we will try our hardest to make sure to let you know we don’t need you. Something you may not know is that we have a huge sense of pride within ourselves. Giving up on anything that lets us be like everybody else is the worst thing possible ever. So, when we can’t finish what we started, we will reluctantly ask for help. We will not be very happy with ourselves, but at that time it will be something that needed to happen.

I have always had a difficult time accepting help. One thing that I despise is when someone close to me will automatically do something for me, when they know I can clearly do it. I love trying to find new things to do with my feet, nothing really makes more happy in life than discovering new ways to do ordinary tasks around the house or out in public, but it does make people nervous, they think I’m going to get hurt, so they try to dodge that obstacle as fast as they can and yes, it is very annoying but you have to let it go and hope for the next time. You have to realize your patience is not the same as others so in a way, I think both sides need to keep that in mind when it comes to these things. It also ultimately depends on them on if they can learn to grow to trust you with the various tasks you know or learn later in life..

Here are previous letters and their links if you want to check them out now!

Arthrogryposis Multiplex Congenita | Building Trust | Be Truthful To Your Children | Dear Disability Community | Events | Treat Your Friends The Way You’d Want To Be Treated | Long Term Goals