Making Asian Night Market Food at Home

On the menu: Taiwanese Popcorn Chicken. Not on the menu: Silkworm larvae, sheep penis or sea horse. I have this week off work. But T’s daycare closed between Christmas and New Year’s, so the quiet break I was looking forward to didn’t pan out. I had a meltdown when the daycare notified us about thisContinue reading “Making Asian Night Market Food at Home”

Hot Dog, Hot Diggity Dog

Christmas miracles come in all forms. This year, it came to us as a wiener. We’re spending a few days with T’s Grammy and Grandad in the East Coast. We had booked this trip earlier this Fall when the pandemic was in a stable condition and decided to proceed with it. T is having aContinue reading “Hot Dog, Hot Diggity Dog”

Tell the Truth

If the truth sets us free, would you still tell it if it means upsetting someone? Several years ago, I was on a crowded train and the two women standing next to me were talking about drinking and pregnancy. One of them said she knows doctors who’ve said it is ok to drink during pregnancyContinue reading “Tell the Truth”

“Oh my God, is that a coconut?!”

My six year old and I started a new bonding ritual: Friday night grocery runs. After a long week, all I wanted was my weekly 90 minutes of freedom: going to the supermarket. “Oh, can I come?” T asked chirpily. “Oh, fuck no,” I said to myself in my head. But I simply said, “No.”Continue reading ““Oh my God, is that a coconut?!””

Light Up the Dark

The colorful ghosts of Christmas past emerged this weekend, sparking wishes for future memories. After I did my Friday night groceries, I returned home to Christmas cheer thanks to T and the hubby. It’s only mid November, but it’s family tradition to put up the tree, decorations and lights after Remembrance Day. Christmas is withoutContinue reading “Light Up the Dark”

Fish Maw Soup

Our six-year-old picky eater has one fishy sense of humour. This past weekend, we celebrated my second cousin’s 18th birthday. My cousin and her husband treated the family to a sumptuous lunch at Congee Queen, one of my fave Chinese restaurants. Anytime we eat at a restaurant, we pack food for picky eater T; thisContinue reading “Fish Maw Soup”

Golden Hour

Nature reminds us that magic exists before and right after the darkness. Golden hour refers to the hour after sunrise and before sunset when the sun is softer and redder compared to when it’s higher in the sky. Also called magic hour, it is a photographer and filmmaker’s dream. I first noticed this in aContinue reading “Golden Hour”

The Promise of a New Day

This Thanksgiving, I am grateful for the fresh start that each new day brings. The last two weeks have been rough with T. I don’t know if it’s because the honeymoon phase at school has passed or if he’s finding the transition period challenging but we’ve had rough patches on an almost daily basis. DuringContinue reading “The Promise of a New Day”

Low Tide

One great advice I’ve received about finding balance in life is a metaphor about tides. Tides are described as “the rise and fall of sea levels caused by the combined effects of the gravitational forces exerted by the Moon and the Sun, and the rotation of the Earth.” My colleague’s advice is deceptively simple butContinue reading “Low Tide”

Cooking for the Soul

Nature, travel, music, writing, prayers, exercise, reading. How do you nourish your spirit? For me, the answer is all of the above! While I didn’t intentionally set out to do so, my last few posts have been about how I prioritize the mind, the body and the spirit in my journey as a special needsContinue reading “Cooking for the Soul”

“Never Let the Fire Inside You Leave.”

Fire has long served as a symbol of creation, destruction and rebirth. T’s latest song obsession is “Iconic,” from Madonna’s 2015 album “Rebel Heart.” Every August 16, M’s birthday, we listen to her songs. This triphop autotune-laced song appeals to T, because he thinks a robot is singing. If you try and fail, get upContinue reading ““Never Let the Fire Inside You Leave.””

How Counseling Helped Me Become a Better Parent

Special needs parenting can be a rollercoaster and wonderful people can help along the journey. A crucial turning point came early on for me when I recognized and acknowledged that the stress I was experiencing with the challenges of parenting a child with a prognosis of FASD did not always match my capacity to tackleContinue reading “How Counseling Helped Me Become a Better Parent”

Reunions with Grandparents!

After a year of separation, T reunited with his grandparents from both sides of the family. Two weekends ago, we spent a Saturday with my uncle’s family, our Aunt and Ma – going on a nature walk and ending the day with a delicious bbq prepared by my aunt and cousin. It was Ma’s firstContinue reading “Reunions with Grandparents!”

Lost in an Odyssey

Mario Bros has provided great bonding moments with T and is teaching him about patience and perseverance. During these virtual schooling and work from home days, it’s common for me to be on a work call and for T to walk into the office unannounced. He’d walk past behind my chair, his little head seenContinue reading “Lost in an Odyssey”

The New Boy in the Park

A wonderful shortlived friendship T made was a reminder about kindness and being present. I often think about friendships, because I’ve read it’s often a challenge for individuals with an invisible disability, such as FASD. It was one of the hardest parts of the pandemic, knowing T was isolated at home and missing out onContinue reading “The New Boy in the Park”

Helping Kids Set and Achieve Goals

One recent win we had was helping T set daily goals that positively impacted virtual schooling. T’s Child and Youth Worker was motivated – as were we – to get him to participate more in class. Depending on which camp you fall on, you may find token charts useful or eye rolling in shaping behaviourContinue reading “Helping Kids Set and Achieve Goals”

Graduation Day

Two years of growth, unexpected challenges, laughter and tears culminated in a virtual kindergarten graduation. I can’t thank T’s teachers enough for hosting a virtual ceremony this morning during the pandemic to celebrate this important milestone. They provided in advance a graduation kit – diploma, cardboard hat, fun sunglasses – to have ready for thisContinue reading “Graduation Day”

Coming Out… Again and Again

I came out in my teen years. Decades later, I am coming out again as a special needs parent. As the world celebrates Pride Month and the importance of inclusion, love and tolerance, I am thankful for living in a part of the world that is, for the most part, progressive and inclusive. I cameContinue reading “Coming Out… Again and Again”

Castles in the Sand

A day at the beach reminded me that childhood flies by like sand rushing through an hourglass. A colleague once told me, when the hubby and I first adopted T, to enjoy T’s childhood because it will go by quickly. I recently noticed that T has been staying in his bed throughout the night withoutContinue reading “Castles in the Sand”

“Yes, I Can…”

Monkey bars provided a magical moment when T’s “I can’t” became “I can.” We see for ourselves that while T has a challenging prognosis of at risk FASD, he has so many great qualities. Among them, he is kind, caring, funny, bright and persevering. But we also see, and notice more, things like anxiety, selfContinue reading ““Yes, I Can…””