Message from An Autism Mom: Never Give Up | Christa Dowdy Law | LifeStyle Blogger | Lexington, Kentucky

I never know what will inspire a blog post. This was inspired by a Facebook Memory. 6 years ago I posted a video of me and Cade, sometime in the wee hours of the night, only showing the light from the living room window coming from a street light, and all you could hear was his little voice. My 4 year old autistic sweet boy singing “if you’re happy and you know it” but there were no words. Only the “sounds” of the words. Sure I could understand him. He was my son. When I played it for my co-worker she gave me a blank grin until I told her what the song was and then, yes! Of course she recognized the tune! And 6 years later he can sing every word to every Johnny Cash song, in pitch.

How far we have come. It’s reminders like these that fill my heart with pride and contentment. That maybe everything is coming together. That all of the work and effort and sleepless nights and worry and baby steps were all worth it. And every one saying “he will get there, don’t worry, everyone is different… they were right. Now he’s in fifth grade.  Now he has friends and peers that understand him and want to help him and play with him and be WITH him.

I’ve grown too though, as a mom. As a person. I’ve had to. When handed the diagnosis, I had no idea what I’d be dealing with. Meltdowns and frustration in the beginning. A lot of behavior issues. Therapy and questions. So many questions. But I have learned so much and so many people have helped me. Guided me. Let me cry on their shoulders. LITERALLY.

The biggest things with my son I’ve learned: To talk to him. His output might be jumbled sometimes. He might not be able to always express himself appropriately but he has always seemed to be able to understand if I could get his undivided attention. And I know that not all kids are the same but all kids with autism are in there. There is some way to connect. And whether you know they are listening to you or not, talk to them. For Cade, I always talked to him like he was an adult. Like he was my best friend. And he always was. He was my side kick. My little buddy. Once I realized that “transitions” were difficult for him, I recognized that he simply needed to understand what was going to happen. He needed an explanation. Sometimes it had to be said several times. Sometimes in different ways. But that was key!

Something else I really grasped onto early and tried to remember daily is the emotional side of my kiddo and just how MY emotions affect him. When I’m sad or upset, he picks up on that so quickly. And being a single mom, those emotions come. It’s just part of life. So I had to start to focus on myself, to make myself better so that I could make HIM better. Because as I developed my own happiness, I saw his happiness bloom. Now I focus on positivity and it has transformed not only my life, but our home, Cade’s interaction with me and hopefully his happiness.

I would be lying if I told you I’ve never gone to bed crying, with worry that this day would never come, that I could never see him at THIS point. And I would be lying if I told you that I don’t still worry about his future and if his progress will continue or how his future will play out. All I can tell you is that I don’t give up and neither should you! Because our kiddos are special and every day is a new day and every day could hold a miracle! Never give up on what you are doing. Never give up on the strength of your child and the strength of your own.

Importance of Sunscreen Year Round | LimeLife by Alcone | Perfect Sunscreen | Christa Dowdy Law | Beauty Blogger | Lexington Kentucky

It’s August and the end of summer, so why all of the hype over sunscreen? I will tell you why! Because you don’t want skin cancer! Right? The sun doesn’t take a break and neither should you and the safest sunscreen,..LimeLife has just released the most incredible and most Perfect Sunscreen that I have been able to do any research on. It’s completely made from organic ingredients. It is a moisturizer, a makeup primer and it firms your skin as you wear it… PLUS an SPF 30. That’s 4 products in one. I would go on to say it was magic but I’m afraid someone would think I was being a little bit dramatic.

So why sunscreen in August? Well because we need to be wearing a sunscreen EVERYDAY that we aren’t in a completely blacked out room. Do you know that we aren’t even protected from the sun’s rays through a glass window? We would have to be in a windowless room 24/7 to be completely protected from the sun’s harmful rays.

Just what are those rays?

UVA: Ultraviolet A rays, also called “long wave” rays, make up 95 percent of the rays that reach the surface of the Earth. They can penetrate the skin much deeper than UVB rays, and are responsible for signs of aging (like dark spots and wrinkles). They also can initiate skin cancers. These are the rays that make you more tan. UVA rays can penetrate glass and clouds.

So in a nutshell, 95 percent of the rays that reach our skin are the harmful rays.

UVB: Ultraviolet B rays, or “shortwave” rays, don’t penetrate the skin as deeply. They’re what causes redness and sunburns. They are most intense from early spring to early fall, and during the day’s sunniest hours. UVB rays are not as likely to penetrate glass as UVA rays, but even though they dwindle in the winter, many can reach the Earth’s surface and are easily reflected off snow and ice. This makes them a bigger threat on the ski slopes, and at higher altitudes on sunny days.

Daily sunscreens are vital because of when we get the majority of our sun exposure. It’s not when we go to the beach or the pool but when we’re driving in the car and walking to work. As it turns out, sometimes those short bursts of sunshine are the most harmful. According to Cancer Research UK, short, intense exposure to the sun puts you at the highest risk of melanoma.

Besides wanting to wear sunscreen to prevent skin cancer, you want to wear sunscreen year around because you can take years off your skin!

Daily sunscreen use can prevent skin aging. A large study out of Australia were compared daily, those that used sunscreen daily and those that only used it occasionally. And after four and a half years, the group that used sunscreen only when they thought they needed it had significant brown spots and fine lines. But the daily group showed no detectable signs of aging.

So what is best? SPF 30 is perfect for everyday use. The FDA doesn’t approve anything with an SPF over 50 because nothing above 50 is any more effective than an SPF 50.

So in walks LimeLife by Alcone and the Perfect Sunscreen. Finally a product that not only protects our skin with the most perfect SPF 30 but also primes our skin for a perfect makeup application, it moisturizes our skin with only natural and organic ingredients, and it FIRMS our skin with anti aging ingredients which makes this sunscreen especially unique! It is LITERALLY “Perfect”.

So let’s talk about some of the ingredients that make our sunscreen so perfect! The Aloe is used as an emollient in our sunscreen to provide an easy application that hydrates the skin. It’s commonly used in sunscreens because it is easily accessible and is commonly a base ingredient in skincare. And we all know how aloe feels.

Buddleja has antioxidant properties and boosts the skins defenses against permanent UV induced damages!

Caprylhydroxamic Acid – an ingredient that may sound scary but this coconut derived ingredient naturally preserves the sunscreen so that we are able to avoid things like parables and other yucky (unnatural) ingredients.

Cetearyl Olivate – basically olive oil which is a great oil for the skin!

Chicory Root is the ingredient that boosts the anti aging benefits! It produces an IMMEDIATE firming effect while you will also see a collagen boosting effecting effect and the long term skin benefits of retinol, without using retinol! (NATURALLY) Do you see a trend here?

Helichrysum Italicum Oil is extracted from the Immortelle Flower, also known as the Everlasting Flower. This oil is known for its restorative and anti-aging properties!

Jojoba Seed Oil is an ingredient that is actually a wax but because it has such a low melting point, it exists as a liquid. What I love about this ingredient is that because of its antibacterial and anti inflammatory properties, this ingredient is often used to prevent or to treat acne. My conclusion, I don’t think I’ll worry about this sunscreen breaking me out like other (chemical) sunscreens.

Our sunscreen is vegan, cruelty-free, paraded-free, gluten-free and WORRY FREE!

The one an only active ingredient in our perfect sunscreen is zinc oxide. This mineral is the safest option when it comes to natural and broad spectrum sun protection.

Our sunscreen is only $38 and is so worth every penny. Especially when you consider the worth of your skin health! With all that this tube provides, why wouldn’t you protect your skin, firm your skin, prime your skin, and moisturize your skin? It’s simple! It’s PERFECT!

GET YOUR PERFECT SUNSCREEN NOW!

Keto Cauliflower Soup | Christa Dowdy Law | LifeStyle Blogger | Keto Momma| Lexington Ky

I never expected to be a food blogger but I do love cooking and I’ve started this Keto journey so I am excited to share the recipes that I am trying, and enjoying! This weekend I was craving some comfort food. As you can imagine, a nice bowl of potato soup is no longer an option for me, however I can substitute foods I can have for foods I can’t and cauliflower makes an excellent substitution for starchy foods I crave

It turned out AMAZING… I made this in my InstaPot but I’m sure you can put this on the stovetop just as easily!INGREDIENTS:

  1. onion, chopped
  2. 2 T butter or olive oil
  3. 1 large head of cauliflower, leaves and stem removed and the rest coarsely chopped (About 7-8 cups chopped cauliflower. You can use the core.)
  4. 3 cups chicken stock or water
  5. 1 tsp. garlic powder
  6. 1 tsp. Sea salt
  7. 4 oz. cream cheese, cut into cubes
  8. 1 cup grated sharp cheddar
  9. 1/2 cup half and half or whipping cream

TOPPING INGREDIENT OPTIONS:

  • extra grated cheddar
  • sour cream
  • 8-10 strips bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
  • thinly sliced green onions
  • Shrimp

DIRECTIONS:

Peel the onion and chop into pieces. Remove the leaves from the cauliflower and chop into pieces (you can use the core)

Add the chicken stock (or water), onion, chopped cauliflower, garlic and salt to the InstaPot. Lock the lid, use the MANUAL setting and cook on for 10 minutes. Quick release the pressure when it’s finished cooking.

While the InstaPot is cooking, prepare the cream cheese and grate the cheddar. Also cook the bacon (I cook mine in coconut oil for added fat until crisp) or use pre-cooked bacon if you’re in a hurry.

Use an immersion blender or food processor to puree the soup. I personally used an immersion blender to puree the soup in the InstaPot cooker. If the soup is too thick, add more stock. If it seems too thin, let it simmer (leave the cooker on warm) until the liquid reduces.

Add grated cheese and cream cheese cubes and stir until melted. Add half and half, heat through. Season to taste.

Serve hot with your choice of toppings!

Here’s the Keto Nutritional values for those of you tracking your macros!

I hope you will give it a try and leave me a comment!! Let me know what you think!!