About This Blog
I write about the hilarious insanity that is my life.  This includes parenting, sensory processing disorder, anxiety, ADHD, allergies, asthma, Asperger Syndrome, and whatever else we have cooking at any given moment.  Sometimes I write things that not everyone agrees with, but I'm always honest.  Let's face it, if all I ever wrote about was sunshine and lollipops, this wouldn't be a very interesting blog.

Comments Policy
I welcome comments on my posts. I am truly grateful that you spend the time to read my blog, and if you'd like to comment on it, I'm grateful for that too.

As the blog's author, I reserve the right to remove any comment that is blatantly spam, wildly off-topic, abusive, or promotes hate in any way.

About Us
We have four children, also known as The Young Carnivores, who are all stark raving mad in their own special ways.

Cookie is 12 years old, and a worrier, which is the polite way of saying that she has Generalized Anxiety Disorder. She has always been a worrier. When she was four, she worried about people dying. Now she worries about calculus, standardized tests, forgetting things, if she's getting enough calcium, and whether she'll have enough energy to worry tomorrow, as she has stayed up too late worrying tonight. The test for the gifted program at school worried her so much that we had to put her in therapy. Cookie and her twin sister, The Pork Lo Maniac, used to have lots of allergies, and basically lived on lamb and rice for a long time. They are now (pretty much) allergy-free.

The Pork Lo Maniac is also 12 years old, and is one minute younger than her twin sister, Cookie. The Pork Lo Maniac loves all things salty, meaty, and especially pork lo mein.  She is destined to have high blood pressure by age 14. This is not helped by the fact that she ate at least a pound of ground lamb a day for three straight years. She also has crazy amounts of energy, and completely lacks a "volume control" button, which is probably related to the fact that she has ADHD. When the PLM was 9, we had a conversation about how many scientists think ADHD is the beginning of the autism spectrum. She said, "Mom, I think I'm a couple of notches over from there." She was formally diagnosed a year later. The PLM sometimes bickers with her siblings, but defends them to the end.

The Peanut Butter Kid (PBK) is 9 years old, and is probably the smartest person I've ever met. In between eating peanut butter-and-honey sandwiches, which are good for breakfast, lunch, and snacks, and sometimes dinner, she is busy trying to keep up with her older sisters. Sometimes she can't (her legs are just shorter than theirs, darn it) and sometimes she can (she writes chapter books, in cursive). PBK is also now allergy-free, but she was originally allergic to lamb and rice, which was basically what I was cooking every day for her older sisters. This is because Mother Nature is a complete bitch wanted me to learn how to cook four different dinners at a time. PBK tends to fall down more than other kids, because her feet curve in a bit (metatarsus adductus) and her shin bones are a little, um, twisted (tibial torsion). She used to get a lot of Occupational Therapy and Physical Therapy. And we had to put her shoes on the opposite feet to help correct the curving, which made people think I was a moron. I can't tell you how many random strangers would insipidly ask, "Do you know her shoes are on the wrong feet, Mommy?" Which totally pissed The Peanut Butter Kid off. "They're not on the wrong feet," she would clarify, rolling her big brown eyes. "They're on the opposite feet." Stupid grown-ups.

Little Dude is 7, and has some issues. For starters, he was born with so many allergies that he was literally allergic to everything. Yes, everything.  As in, there was no food he could eat.  I couldn't eliminate enough foods from my diet, so he was allergic to my breastmilk. I had to stop nursing and put him on a prescription elemental formula imported from England. The delay in introducing solids led to some other delays, like an oral motor delay, which led to a speech delay. He can eat most foods now, and can put them away in impressive quantities. He's had some weird, random issues to complicate things: Kawasaki Disease*; eye surgery to correct strabismus (wandering eye); sensory integration issues, and every time the strep virus passes through, he gets Scarlet Fever. (I could do a whole post on Scarlet Fever, which is really just a complication of strep, but suffice to say that two of the four Young Carnivores have had enough Scarlet Fever to fill up a whole Little House on the Prairie book.) We were so busy addressing each individual issue that cropped up, that we kind of missed a larger issue: he has Asperger Syndrome, which was diagnosed when he was 4.

My husband is The Absent-Minded Professor. He's awesome. Even if his shaky job status resulted in us moving through four different school districts in one year. The thing about The Absent Minded Professor that is both fabulous and infuriating is that he can only concentrate on one thing at a time. When he is at work, he is At Work. I do not call him or contact him when he is At Work unless I am about to have an emergency c-section or am signing papers to buy a house. But, when he is home, he is At Home. He does all the grocery shopping, and always takes at least one child with him. He makes dinner on the weekends.  (Hot dogs, but what do I care?  I love any meal I didn't have to cook.)  He plays with the kids in that crazy way that daddies do, making them think they can fly and encouraging them to take all kinds of risks that mommies don't let them take. Unless I believe they are in mortal danger, I just leave the room. This gives me lots more personal time, and lets the kids develop into something other the namby-pamby pantywaists they probably would become if I was entirely in charge.

And then there's me, the Stark Raving Mad Mommy. In the last few years, we moved from Philly to Texas and then back to Philly; my son was diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome; one of my daughters was diagnosed with ADHD, Asperger Syndrome, and OCD; the other two daughters were diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder; and I was diagnosed with ADHD.  To top it all off, I had to cut out my two-pots-of-coffee-a-day-then-switch-to-Diet-Coke-all-afternoon habit.  Clearly, all of this has driven me stark raving mad.

* Please note that Kawasaki Disease is not the same thing as Coxsackie Virus, or Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease. When Little Dude was hospitalized with the Kawasaki Disease, people kept saying, "yeah, my kid had that, it's no big deal." Kawasaki is actually a pretty big deal. It caused a leak in Little Dude's mitral valve, which has since healed.
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