I’m kind of late to the party, but let me just say I am in love with Sia’s Elastic Heart. Also, I’m enjoying the eye candy! ;) (Even if he is two years younger than me…eeeeeeeeeeee, when did I get so old?!)
My mother recently asked my brothers’ deadbeat father for some help with food (because my 17 and 19 year old brothers have the appetites of small dinosaurs). Because he’s a cheap bastard he gave her some food he acquired from a food bank, rather than doing the decent thing and buying her groceries, or simply giving her money for groceries (the grifting my brothers’ father does with absolutely no qualms, hesitation, or shame could have an entire blog devoted to it). She in turn gave me the “dredges” that she didn’t want – aka perfectly good food staples that she either already has, doesn’t like, or doesn’t use. Whatever. Food is food, right? Well, one of the items was a large, sealed bag of pancake mix. There was no packaging, no labeling other than “pancake mix”, and if there were once mixing instructions printed on the bag, they had gotten rubbed off. So, I donned my Jenny Crocker hat and did my best to turn 32 ounces of pancake mix into edible pancakes. For anyone who may find themselves in a similar quandary, here’s what I added:
- 2ish cups milk
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup oil
- 2 eggs
- 6 oz. cottage cheese
- 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
The resulting pancakes were okay, though Ryan refused to eat them since they weren’t my typical homemade pancakes (my grandmom’s recipe!).
I’m blogging about this because last night Dan and I went to bed late, and we had both reached that Goofy Tired stage – you know what I mean, right? You reach a point where you’re so tired that you’re suddenly chatty, giddy, and everything is just really fucking funny. Well, we got to talking about some of the meals we’ve made lately (and how we can’t win when it comes to portions – the nights we make regular portions, suddenly the kids have bottomless pits for stomachs; the subsequent nights we make extra food, they’re suddenly not hungry at all), and I referred to the pancakes as “government-issued pancakes”. This cracked Dan UP, and his hysterical snort-giggling in turn set me off, and the two of us laid there for a good ten minutes, laughing our asses off over government-issued pancakes and pancake mix rations.
And then we slept. HARD.
Ryan hasn’t had a hair cut in nearly three years (unless you count the few times he’s cut out knots without letting me try to de-tangle them first; and the time my idiot teenage brothers coaxed him into cutting off a chunk of hair — FROM THE FRONT OF HIS HEAD — and gluing it to his face to make a mustache (see bottom of post)).
Strangers have referred to him as a girl for nearly two years.
Ryan stopped caring about a year ago.
When Ryan was younger, cutting his hair was a DIY affair that involved Dan and I mentally bracing ourselves, physically restraining Ryan, and then using clippers to give him a buzz cut as quickly as possible – all the while doing our best to tune out his ear-piercing screams of discomfort from the sensory overload caused by the sound and feel of the clippers. Autism strikes again. We took him to a hair stylist once, when he was about two years of age. We left with the cut half-finished, the stylist tipped generously, and many heartfelt apologies to her, the other staff, and the other customers for the crying and screaming. It was after that when Dan and I took matters into our own hands.
But in the spring of 2012, when it was once again time for Ryan’s yearly buzz cut (followed by a warm bath to wash off hair residue and calm him down), I couldn’t put any of us through it again. So Dan and I said fuck it, and Ryan has been happily growing out his hair ever since. It’s currently just about as long as Alyssa’s – nearly halfway down his back.
But while Alyssa inherited both Dan’s hair genes as well as mine (thick, somewhat coarse hair that can always benefit from a thorough conditioning), Ryan inherited my mother’s hair – lighter in color, and much finer and silkier in texture. While Dan, Alyssa, and I only have to worry about tangles from not brushing or from a windy day, Ryan’s hair mats and knots at the slightest breeze. So on weekends, days off from school, and the majority of the summer, Ryan rocks a ponytail, and sometimes a braid. He and I have a routine – after his bath or if he has hopped in the shower with me, I’ll use a special shower comb (designed for use on wet hair) to gently comb conditioner through his hair, and then I’ll braid it – always perfectly straight, and always starting low, at the nape of the neck. Once again, sensory issues come into play: a braid that is lopsided or too high irritates him, especially if he’s lying down, so I always take care to make sure the braid is centered and starts no higher than the nape of his neck.
a rare high braid – December 2014
August 2014: the infamous mustache. I WAS SO PISSED.
Funnily enough, it’s my younger brother, Cat, who probably spazzes the most over Ryan’s long hair. My mom quit admonishing me over not giving him a “boys’ cut” a good year and a half ago, but Cat — who is autistic himself, and much like Ryan in both autistic traits as well as general personality — just can’t let it go. He continually references Ryan’s first grade school picture (Ryan is now in third grade), and how good he looked with shorter hair. I just keep reminding Cat that just as he prefers short hair, Ryan prefers long hair – different strokes for different folks, and all that. And if he doesn’t let it go, I quit being nice and tell him to shut up or he’ll make Ryan anxious – and Ryan is anxious enough as it is.
This morning all four of us were at the doctor’s office, and Ryan didn’t bat an eye when the nurse referenced Dan and I having “cute girls”, and he readily answered and followed the nurse’s instructions for “her” and “she”. I take Ryan’s lead and let it go most of the time (because who cares? If Ryan doesn’t then I don’t – there’s nothing wrong with being a girl, after all), though I do try to quickly bring up Ryan’s actual sex – “he was running a low-grade fever”, “Alyssa, help your brother“, etc. Or, if there’s an opportunity to, I’ll mention quietly, “I know the long hair is deceiving, but he’s actually a boy”. But most of the time, we just go on our way with our “girls”. :P
This cat loves nothing more than to be on or very close to a human – preferably Dan, followed by Dan + I, followed by me. He likes to lay on his back, get belly rubs, jowl rubs, kisses and smooches along his face, and he begs for scraps worse than any dog I’ve ever known. I love him. ♥
Shopping for prom on a budget sounds like an impossible endeavor, but in reality it’s nothing more than a little difficult. With patience and ingenuity, you’ll find that you’ll be able to put together a stunning outfit for prom without breaking the bank.
First, let’s talk about prom dresses. If you have a few prom dresses UK in mind, see if it’s possible to find the type of dress you’re looking for at a reduced cost. Look to the hottest fashions and latest runway releases for inspiration, but then head to sales and clearance racks to see if you can find very similar designs at a significantly discounted cost. In many cases, designers slash prices on last season’s gowns simple because they’re an inch or two longer, or a different color, or use a different material. If you don’t mind a slightly longer, darker, or heavier gown, then go for the discounted option – you’ll still look fabulous!
Now let’s talk about accessories. Your prom dress is the centerpiece of your prom look, just as a Christmas tree is the centerpiece of your living room. But decorations and adornments are what really bring both to life. In the case of a prom dress, first thing about any kind of cover-up you may wish to have for cooler evenings – such as a shawl, shrug, or wrap. The cover-up should coordinate in terms of color, though it can be a shade darker or lighter. When it comes to shoes, comfort is important, so even if you love the look of stilettos, take into consideration the many hours you’ll be spending standing, walking, and dancing, and choose low-heeled pumped or even a pair of shiny flats instead.
Finally, there is jewelry to consider. Jewelry should ideally coordinate with your prom dress. Color-wise, you’ll want to stick with the right “tone”. By tone, it’s meant that you’ll want to stick with warm tones or cool tones, and try your best not to mix both. For instance, a silver gown is most definitely a cool tone, so you’ll want to wear cool-toned jewelry — silver or even black. A red, orange, or green gown, on the other hand, would all be considered warm tones in most cases, so gold jewelry would go best.