comedian, Comedy, fitness, healthly living, healthy eating, humor, Miss Shannan

TINY TALES OF AUTISM – HOW THE COOKIE CRUMBLES

It is 11:00 pm and I’m baking cookies right now. Not fancy cookies. They do have chocolate chips in them, but that doesn’t count as fancy in these days of “foodie” ingredients like “truffle infused rose hips,” or “artisan crumbles featuring dribbles of lavender oil” or “pomegranate compote with a semi-sweet seaweed foam glaze.”

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The chips are plain chocolate. Milk chocolate, according the package. I didn’t make the chips, which already makes me a terrible person, but nobody is perfect.

I have 8 – 10 minutes to explain why I bake cookies. Cyclone Kid is sleeping upstairs. I wanted snacks, pie in particular, but we don’t have anything like that in our house.

The last time I went on a diet, years ago, I resolved that food was supposed to be work and that work takes time. The fact that our busy lives have made it so that we no longer have time to eat anything that is not instantaneous, was making me fat and impatient. So the first step I took was that I stopped buying pre-made and pre-package desserts.

We all know that food isn’t supposed to just “happen” all the time. Science is awesome and has given us some amazing products that just pop into existence like you’re strolling through “Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory.” But, we come from hunters and gathers and cavemen. None of them had microwave, gas station burritos.

I’m not some anarchist who thinks all food should be raw, or stuff should be made only with the recipes they used back in Biblical times. But, I did promise myself that if I wanted a darn cookie, I had to want it enough to:

Preheat the oven,
Walk over to the freezer,
Get out the package of cookie dough,
Open up the package,
Grab a cookie sheet,
Put the lovely balls of dough on the sheet,
Arrange them 2″ apart
Slide the dough balls into the now pre-heated oven…

And then, most importantly, wait...

Wait for just a little while. Long enough to clean a few dishes. To sing an old song that just popped into my head. Sometimes I end up waiting so long that I decide that I don’t want cookies at all and that I should take them to work the next day, instead.

At times, I wait long enough to stand there, breathing, while I stare at the the wall. For 8 -10 minutes.

There goes the timer. It flies by. The waiting worked out fine. Now it’s time to let things cool off.

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Autism, child health, comedian, Comedy, humor, Miss Shannan, Uncategorized

TINY TALES OF AUTISM – “HELPING HANDS” OR “WANNA HEAR ABOUT MY HOLE?”

imageSee the little dude in the photo, over there? That’s my Cyclone Kid. The reason I work so hard. The little man who makes me laugh, without saying a word. He is my handsome, fuzzy-headed companion. That’s my kid, and as I’ve mentioned before, he also has Autism Spectrum Disorder.

I adore him, but he can be a lot of work. One of the things that took a long time for me to come to terms with is that I can’t do everything. That was a harsh realization for me. I’ve always prided myself on not asking for people’s help, and not being a bother to anyone. And frankly, not risking the disappointment of putting yourself out there and not getting back the response that you desired.

It is not something that I admit easily, but it is something that I should have admitted sooner; before I developed the permanent, exhaustion-fueled bags under my eyes. Kids are a lot of work. Kids with Autism, increasingly so, and no, you don’t have the time or energy to be great at everything.

This leads me to my latest Cyclone Kid story.  If you can’t tell from the photo, Cyclone Kid is quite the bundle. At 5 years-old he’s already more than half my height and weight, and as strong as a baby bear. But, he doesn’t know that, which is okay. At this point, he’s still an adorable baby bear.

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The other day while we were playing, he gave me one of his baby bear style hugs and knocked us both off balance. In typical Mama Bear fashion, I elected not to fall on him and instead reached out to brace myself against the nearest wall.  As it turns out, drywall is no match for Cyclone Kid and me. My hand went right through, creating this lovely hand-sized hole in our wall.  

That was awesome.  I took a deep breath and then laughed for 10 minutes. (I’m a comic. If we don’t laugh at weird stuff like this, we’d burst into tears.) Then reality set in, that chuckles do not repair drywall.

Here’s where the “helping hand” comes in. I considered trying to fix the hole myself, but instead, I mentioned the fiasco to my good buddy, Derick. Of course, he laughed at me too, but after only two compulsory, “Sure I can help you with your hole,” jokes, he patched things right up. Totally worth it! 

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My “Knight in Plastered-Armor” took about 15 minutes to do what would have taken me all day, or even worse turned into an “I Love Lucy” style disaster. 

(Don’t get me wrong. If I ever get a sitcom, that’s totally what’s going to happen in the episode. We’ll call it “Plaster-geddon.)

Many families with children on the Autism Spectrum talk about how they wish that they had asked for help sooner. I am no exception. So thank you to all the good friends that have stepped up to help this occasional “lady in distress.” Cyclone Kid and I appreciate you all very much.

Miss Shannan Paul

Comedy, Geeky People Problems, Laugh, Minneapolis, Miss Shannan, MissShannan, mommy, Shannan Paul

I WOULD ROCK THIS – ROBOT SUIT

You know what I need? For real, do you you know what I really need? A robot suit. I’ve put some thought into this, and I think a lot of the world’s woes could be solved by one awesome woman in her robot suit.

I would trade in my current car, all my future cars and figure out a way to go back in time and trade in every car that I’ve ever owned in the past, just for one of these robot suits featured in this video. Why is life so unfair?

If any mad scientists out there are looking for test pilots, feel free to hit me up on Twitter. Its @MissShannan. I’m willing to travel and have excellent reflexes. Plus I’m pretty tiny, so it could be a small robot suit to cut down on the initial production costs.

So far, I’m not seeing much of a downside to this particular plan, so feel free to give me a shout in a week or two when you’ve worked out the details.

Autism, comedian, Comedy, family, kids, Laugh, Minnesota, Miss Shannan, mommy, parenting

WORDLESS WEDNESDAY – HAPPY HALLOWEEN FROM OUR LITTLE HOBBIT

We dub him, Dominic Took. On a journey there and back again.

AUSM, Autism, Comedy, Minnesota Twins, Miss Shannan, mom

THANKS AUSM AND GO MINNESOTA TWINS

Target Field 6-15-12

Thanks to the Autism Society of Minnesota for sponsoring a great event at last night’s Minnesota Twins game at Target Field.


We had a really good time and we learned that our Cyclone Kid:

  • Is willing to sit through 6 and 1/2 innings of baseball. (Especially, if you bribe him with lemonade
  • Only likes the Target Field hot dogs – not the bun
  • Will cheer for both baseball teams when they are at bat, because clapping is super fun. 🙂


The Autism Society of Minnesota is a fantastic resource for families with kids on the spectrum. They work to enhance the lives of individuals with autism spectrum disorders. Find out more about them at www.ausm.org