Thursday, November 4, 2010

Winter blues, Winter lights, Autism Society conference.

Gearing up for the end of Daylight Savings.
 I have made it a tradition to hang winter lights in the house during the darker months. I hang them close to the end of Daylight Savings and turn them on daily until the time springs forward again.  My most wonderful mother in law is the queen of clearance sales and had boxes and boxes of Christmas lights waiting  for me when we were there visiting. I use clear lights  in the house and only colored here and there.  It makes the house seem cozy and cheerful and helps to combat the blues of shorter days. Daylight Savings ends on the 7th so prepare my friends!

Combating the winter blues
Soup and baking season is also upon us and time to pull out the wool socks and vitamin D supplements. Wool is a wicking fabric as well as naturally antibacterial and keep you incredibly warm as millions of sheep can attest .  When inside, I am usually in shoes. Whether they are flip flops, minimal running shoes, or warmer boots. Toe socks are great when you just can't quite give up the flip flops! 

Pumpkin Sweet Potato Soup from Gluten Free Goddess
  My lovely hubby is making split pea soup with green beans and potatoes.  It ends up tasting like the worlds greatest green bean casserole!  We also have 8 pie pumpkins that need to be made into Black Bean Chili and a spicy bisque.  I could live on Cabbage and turkey soup with balsamic vinegar and it is so fast and easy to make.
The lovely hubby also roasted a turkey yesterday and made stock for said soups!
Vitamin D supplements are ready and waiting. I was told by a dietitian and our doctor (who is both an MD and holistic practitioner)  that I should be taking 6,000 iu a day and the children 2,000iu or more if testing shows they are low.  Studies are showing that the previously recommended dosages were dramatically low.  Its a simple blood test to check levels. This concurs with the research I have done while looking into supplementation. I try to get some sunshine in the winter months but it is never enough for me since we are inside so much during the winter. Low vitamin D levels can lead to depression and a culprit for sure of the winter blues.

Autism Society Iowa Conference
I am on a waiting list to go to the fall  Autism Society conference in West Des Moines in a couple of weeks. Temple Grandin will be the key speaker and someone I would love to meet. There are some mothers I would really like to connect with again that I have not seen in quite some time.  There is a powerful connection between parents of special needs children. Shared empathy as well as an understanding of celebrating of the small stuff that often gets taken for granted with typically developing kids.
Temple Grandin
 Autism has been a large part of our lives for the last 6 years.  My son Jupiter has severe autism and is non verbal.  The support of my dear husband and running make it bearable.
We have tried so many treatments and spent thousands of dollars to heal some of the damage done to his gut.  A  gluten and casein free diet has been the biggest success so far. The frustrations of trial and error and harsh realities are left on the side of the road in the form of sweat and tears over and over again as my feet connect with the earth. Maybe I should run to the conference!

How are you planning for the impending winter??

On a completely different note, here is the link to a  NY Times barefoot running article that I was a part of.  Its a nicely balanced article and all about barefoot marathoners!!


Amanda@runninghood said...

Thank you for this post. And thank you for sharing the information about the Autism Society. When did you first notice your son having signs of autism? I'm sure that is such a hard thing to deal with as a mother. As a teacher, seeing kids suffer with autism is hard enough. I can only imagine. Thinking of you. Thanks again for sharing.

Laura said...

Congrats on the NY Times article!! So cool :)
And I LOVE that first picture in your post.

Katie Kift said...

We have found that the CF-GF diet was the biggest success with D too. I also read in one of the CF-GF books that a lack of VitD can cause symptoms to worsen. I know D's behaviours get worse from about Nov-Feb/March. Where we are we get NO UV/VitD during this time at all. Do you find this too? Jupiters symptoms worsen during the winter.

I can completely related to needing those shared experiences when you have special needs children. At D's Autism school there is a little group of 4-5 of us, who are there daily. A friend of mine said that sometimes she just needed to rant about everything and the Parent's room at the school was the ONLY place she felt she could do that where she knew people would understand.

You're doing a great job there. Also to do a sometimes difficult (but very rewarding) job with grace, laughter and courage to fight. You're an inspiration!

AM! said...

Hey there!
great post! few things, I've so heard/learned about Temple. She's the best!
and super, super cool that you were in the freakin' NY times?! are ya kiddin' me!? too cool;-)

as inspire me;-)

Molly said...

the christmas lights around the house is such a great idea! I really hope you get to go to the conference! now I must go and read the lastest and greatest about you in the Times!!!!

Elizabeth said...

Thanks for posting a link to the article and glad you are finding solutions that work with your son.

I take about 4000 D upping it to 6000 in the winter months that seems to be what had worked best for my body.

Marlene said...

Hot soup, Christmas lights, cozy socks.... you have me in the mood for winter!

shel said...

food. vitamin d. socks. yup, that's my winter plans as well. lots of running in short circles around the neighborhood and treadmill and cross training too

B. Kramer said...

Congrats on the article. In the winter, I can still walk around the apartment with bare feet. We have steam heat, which keeps things toasty. But sometimes I wear my slippers. Cheers!

funderson said...

I'm a self-certified winter survival expert and my advice is to GO OUTSIDE! Find a cool winter sport...outdoor skating rink, x-country skiing..whatever. You've got to embrace the winter. Enjoy snow shoveling and walks in the dark! You might as well..

C2Iowa said...

Good luck with the conference.

I have only lived in NC Iowa for two + years --- I hope that we do not repeat last year!

congrats on the article.

ShellBell said... have me craving soup.

I love the lights idea. I bet it makes the house cozy!

I'm going to try my best to run outside but I really dislike winter!

heather said...

New soup recipes are piling up beside the old standby's and I've pulled out all of our wool...sweaters, socks, blankets.

Does your doc recommend a particular brand of supplements? We don't take many but I do take Vit. D and I'm trying to get hubby to take Vit C. Not sure what is good though.

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