Tuesday, August 13, 2013

My Other Blog....Cooking With Ms. Sara

Hi! Just wanted to post a link to my OTHER blog.

Granted it hasn't gotten much attention in the last few months. That will change in September.
You see its a Cooking/Teaching blog. It is about my life skills adventures in the classroom. I teach children with severe Autism. I love it. Absolutely love it. There are days when I don't want to get up, or days I wring my hands in frustration and do not get me started on the political BS that comes with the job. But the teaching? The actual teaching and interaction with "my kids"? Priceless. Its why I go to work each day.

We do cooking on Fridays. Its great, because some kids with Autism (and those without) are picky, PICKY eaters. By teaching them how to make a meal it teaches them Life Skills, and gets them invested in what they eat. I had one student who hated eggs. Screamed and cried and shook like I was feeding them brussels sprouts.  Once he was invested in making his breakfast? With some cheese on top? G-O-N-E. Signed "more" and everything.

So my other mission was to get others out there to do the same and post some resources (Boardmaker symbols) because the software is expensive and if I can make a free PDF, why the hell not. My assistants were like "You should do a cooking show..." and the blog was born. But it was born halfway through the year. So this fall you will be able to how I start (cheese sandwiches) and end up with Chicken Parm (seriously).

Monday, August 12, 2013

Website polished :)

I have been working hard to get the website to be more user friendly.

I love Other People's Pixels. They have template and are pretty cheap: $160 a year. It does have its drawbacks. I found that you have to choose either template or menu or a "hyrbid" setting. But the menu tabs were so incredible small. So I played around with the fonts. Also it was really hard to navigate. But then I combined my galleries into 3 main groups, and then I was able to link them to the main menu.

Please take a look and let me know what you think.
Thank you!


Friday, August 2, 2013

Tech Purchases and Adoption Update

I bought a new Kindle! Ok Mike got me the Kindle but I found the deal lol!
I got a coupon for $30 off a tablet at Staples, and Staples had a sale the Kindle Fire HD 7" *32gb* for 189.00! So for 159 I got a new tablet.

You see, I use iPads all the time at work, and while I love the interface and user friendliness of them I think they are just too big. So I had my eye on the iPad mini but when I saw the price of 399 for only 16gb of storage... well I focused on the Kindle. So it took some time and and buyer's remorse set it... "It is not the same as the iPad!"

I now adore it. I really do. Thanks to some internet searching I found a way to get other android games not offered by Amazon onto my device (AKA CCS) and now I am completely happy with it. Just hate the freaking carousal part. But L O V E it. I use it mostly for FB and games. My phone was just too small. I plan on using my Kindle Touch (they do not make that one anymore) for reading my books as I like the size and the weight, and the look (matte paper like finish and font not a shiny screen).  While at first I thought that was ridiculous to have both after reading reviews and research I saw that many others felt the same and so I felt better. Hmm... Maybe self esteem issues arising?

I also got some cool headphones (again after research and not wanting to spend 100 or more) by Urbanears. Mostly cause I hate earbuds, and I am going on a long trip, and I wanted them in purple.

My MacBook Pro with laser engraving (done by Mike),
my Kindle Fire, Urbanears Headphones and Kindle Touch.

I also just bought (after MUCH research) and will review once it arrives a travel tripod by MeFoto. I got the Backpacker (in purple), and its travel size is 12 inches. Thats it. And after emails from MeFoto via FB, they assured me it WILL hold my Canon 60D. Since I am going to Prague there is no way I am NOT doing night photography. I didn't want to lug my large and heavy panhead Sunpack tripod. Now I have something light! And its my first time using a ballhead so I will update when I get back with a review.

Onto the adoption update...
This month was our lowest for page views but still going strong on the number of books being sent out. On a positive note, in the last three months, three adoptions have gone through and 3 families from our agency are now complete. So that is something. It gives me hope.