Tips for First Time Hosts of Thanksgiving Dinner

Thanksgiving is celebrated with family. It always includes a big dinner with tons of food. This can be overwhelming for first time hosts of Thanksgiving dinner. Don’t panic! Try these tips to help calm your nerves and make your first hosting a successful one. There are two things that can make a person who is hosting Thanksgiving dinner nervous. One is that the guests are going to expect specific foods that are made exactly the way that mom or grandma used to make. Their big expectations can be hard to live up to. The other difficulty, of course, is that … Continue reading

Gen X Parents Raising Connected Children

The world has changed, in so many ways, between when you were a child and today. Parents who are part of Generation X are the first to raise children (and teens) in a world where the internet is so prevalent. Times have changed, in so many ways! The Washington Post has an article titled “Parenting as a Gen Xer: We’re the first generation of parents in the age of iEverything”. It was written by Allison Slater Tate and posted on September 19, 2014. In it, she comments on the difficulties faced by parent who can’t understand why their kids won’t … Continue reading

Senator Rubio Resigns to Spend More Time With Family

California Senator Michael Rubio, a Democrat, has resigned his position. The main purpose for doing so appears to be an interest in being able to spend more time with his family. He and his wife have two daughters, one of whom has Down Syndrome. The former Senator has taken a job with Chevron. I imagine that it would be quite difficult to be a Senator and to find a way to balance that with family life. I am certain that parents, of any profession, face that same challenge. However, when a parent who is not a public figure changes jobs … Continue reading

Hawaii Bill Could Make Autism Coverage Required

Hawaii might soon be among the list of states that require private health plans to cover autism therapy. A bill, that is being called “Luke’s Law” has been passed by a committee in the Hawaii House of Representatives. An eight year old boy named Luke influenced the committee with his testimony. There are many states that require private health insurance policies to cover the cost of autism treatment. Other states are trying to get their legislature to approve bills that would require that coverage. Without it, many parents find that they cannot afford to pay for the treatment that their … Continue reading

When Weight Enters Politics

I am by no means one of those persons that like to jump on the political bandwagon.  I have my own opinions, which aren’t usually shared. But I have to admit that I am quite disturbed over the fact that someone’s weight has become a political issue.  I am talking about New Jersey governor, Chris Christie. There is some belief that he may be getting ready to run in the next election.  If that’s true, I hope he is ready for things to get real personal.  Because that is how our society tends to handle politics…it gets down deep into … Continue reading

Making a Point with Colored Plastic Balls

Utah is one of the states that does not require private health insurance companies to cover the cost of autism treatment in a health plan. This could change if a bill designed to help families afford the treatment their child requires is passed into law. Advocates made their point about how badly this bill was needed by using brightly colored plastic balls to represent each child it would help. In Utah, there is a bill called SB55. It was released by Senator Brian Shiozawa. The bill was endorsed by Autism Speaks, a national advocacy group. If passed into law, it … Continue reading

Utah Bill Would Require Coverage for Autism Treatment

Utah is one of the states that does not require private health insurance companies to cover the cost of treatment for autism. That could change, thanks to a new bill that would require private health plans to cover it. This is in response to pilot programs that failed to provide adequate coverage. Right now, there are 32 states that require all health insurance plans to cover the cost of autism treatment. Typically, this means that the insurance plan will cover applied behavioral analysis, (ABA). It is an ongoing form of treatment that can require 25 to 40 hours a week. … Continue reading

What is Project AWARE?

Shortly after President Obama discussed new policy proposals to reduce gun violence, there were quite a few news articles about something called Project AWARE. What is it? After doing some research, it appears to be the name of the plan to help make mental health care more accessible to people who need it. Recently, I posted a blog that discussed part of the Obama Administration’s plan to reduce gun violence. Since this is the Special Needs Blog, I focused on the parts that related to improved access to mental health care. Today, I saw several news article about something called … Continue reading

Saving Money on Kids Clothes

With the fiscal cliff causing smaller payments, frugal shopping is quickly becoming a bi-partisan affair.  No matter where you stand on politics or the economy we all can stand on our desire to save money together.  One area most parents are trying to save on is kids clothing.  Keeping growing kids in clothes is an expensive endeavor.  We need ideas to tighten up the purse strings and keep our clothing budget in check.  Here are some ideas, some new and some old, for keeping your kids clothed while keeping your wallet happy. Ways to Save on Kids Clothing Trading Circles: … Continue reading

Seven More States Gain Approval for Exchanges

California was not the only state to gain approval for its health insurance exchange today. There were seven other states who also got their exchanges approved by the federal government. This brings the total up to 20! The Affordable Care Act is great big health reform law that has many parts. One requirement is that all states will have a health insurance exchange that is functional and accessible by January 1, 2014. Although the Affordable Care Act was signed in 2010, it is only recently that some states have completed the appropriate work involved to have their exchanges approved by … Continue reading