Christmas is now past us and the New Year is now begun. This winter has had a severe beginning. It has been the first time that I have seen some of our local waterfalls freeze almost over.
My daughter and I enjoy taking walks on different trails in both Dupont State Park and Pisgah National Forest,both of which are close to us. It gives us time to talk and stay close and I love every moment of it. She is such a special person and she has an uncanny ability to make me see the beauty and simplicity in all things. That is a trait that we all seem to lose with age and one that should never be lost. What a better world it would be if all mankind retained this SPECIAL gift.
The first few pictures in this post are from a walk taken to the Shoals in Dupont just after the snow had melted from our first snowfall. The last few are from the walk to Lookout Falls in Pisgah Forest. I hope you like them.
Both these parks are within a few miles of the future group home and farm. The progress is continuing at a slow pace due to both the weather
and our finances. To date, 1105 tons of driveway rock has been hauled in and spread on the roads and a new approach to the top lookout has been started. Hopefully, with some help, progress will continue.
For those who live near Hendersonville N.C, a new chapter of the Autism Society will hold its first meeting on Jan 30,2018 at the Hendersonville Presbyterian Church, 699 N.Grove St. Hope to see you all there.
Continue to hug your child and let them know how much they mean to you.
I was hoping that the fund raiser would be a success but unfortunately it was not. Between the rain and the very low turnout, only $310 was raised which did not even cover the expenses. We will have to try something else.
After a long wait, our turn for rock delivery finally came. Construction here is going crazy and we are being used as a filler job for the trucking company which gives us a very discounted delivery charge. They have been very good to us. In one day, we were able to have 162 tons of rock delivered. That brings our rock total to 617 tons or half of the total needed for our roads. I know this must sound a little strange but it looks real good that is if rock can look good. Clearing land and improving the entrances to the future homes and other structures is still going on. The fall colors have given the property a glowing appearance.
Even with the progress, it is going too slow for me. I was hoping to have at least two homes up and running. Calls and emails continue to come in from parents and some therapist hoping to find a placement for someone.
We have had three families come out and view the property recently, one of which needed a placement soon. Unfortunately I had to tell them that it will be awhile before the homes would be built do to funding. Hope that changes soon. A call to action would be needed.
This is our first fund raiser for our building fund. Our first week was extremely slow due to not enough advertising and weather. It runs until July 8, 2017.
1 MILLION DOLLAR PRIZE
held at: HIGHER PLANE GOLF RANGE
640 Dana Rd — Hendersonville NC
11:30 am to 2:00 pm
4:00 pm to 7:00 pm
JUNE 17 THRU JULY 8
Please come out and support us. Thank you.
I had hoped to show some updated photos that would give everyone an insight into the progress that is going on at the property so I had held off on this posting. But as usual, my computer skills are hindering it from happening, so I’ll post this without the pictures. I do promise to post a lot of photos as soon as I learn to convert cr2 photos to jpeg photos. Our progress seems to be going slow but we are still moving forward. The recent heavy rain falls (2 really extreme storms) has caused me to have to redo a large amount of grading due to extreme washout. We have had two companies donate their time at a discounted rate which has helped greatly. Western N.C. Trucking has taken over my job of hauling the rock for the driveway and has discounted the delivery charge. He is able to haul 20 tons of rock in one load compared to my 1.5 ton load in my 1 ton truck. I have hauled 238 tons with my truck, each trip taking 40 minutes. It took many days to haul that 238 tons and I am eternally grateful to WNC trucking for taking my hauling job away from me. We have hauled a total of 463 tons which is still short of 1200 tons that we need. Wayne Taylor also gave us a boost with the grading, doing a great job. He worked for two days and only charged for less then one days rate. With more help from people like them, our progress will move a little faster.
The help came at the right time for me, because I have been working almost everyday and seeing little progress. One person can not do everything. My daughter asked me if the group home would ever be done and I always said it would. It had to be, for her and others like her but I was losing hope. Fund raising is still the hardest part and getting more people involved follows a close second. So many people that have written me and those that I have met, have been affected by autism in some way. Some have children with autism or a grandchild with autism or a friend that has a child with autism. They think that what I am trying to do is great but remember one person can not do it all. And one person’s income can not pay for everything. Every grant that I have tried to get will not fund a new start-up 501c3. All start-ups need everyday people to donate something to them no matter how small of an amount. Swallowtail Summit Farms NEEDS TO BE BUILT and it NEEDS YOUR HELP. If you do not want to help us, then please find another start-up group home and help them out. How would you like to be that individual that has autism but has no place to call home? As parents, grandparents, friends of parents with children with autism; WHAT DO YOU SAY TO THOSE AUTISTIC CHILDREN WHEN THEY ASK (WHAT HAPPENS TO ME WHEN YOU DIE)? I have been asked that many times and I answered her with, the group home WILL BE BUILT. PLEASE don’t let me and others like me fail. Find a start-up that you have faith in and help them succeed. NO ONE SHOULD HAVE TO WONDER WHAT HAPPENS TO THEM AFTER THEIR PARENTS DIE and I hope no parent has to try to answer that question. Get involved and help make things happen. I heard a line in a movie that I just finished watching that fits, they said ” If you don’t do something then nothing gets done” DO SOMETHING NOW.
I would like to help spread the word about Sensory Overload that many on the Autism Spectrum struggle with daily. I was reminded about this disorder in an e-mail sent to me from Caring4OurKids. Please check them out on the web.
I know that I have told this story before but here it goes again, it will give a small glimpse into what some of our kids go through. Well over twenty years ago, I attended a talk that covered the topic of Sensory Overload. But it wasn’t the talked that made me understand this problem because I learn through doing. The women giving the talk must have known this, because she let everyone in the audience experience the overload. Her talk was given with a radio blaring, a strobe light shining in our eyes and other distracting things going on. She then talked in a low voice and after her talked, we had to attempted to write down what we heard her say. Not to many were able to remember her talk, and all of us were confused and drained. Her next comment explained everything, she said that is what our children experience all day and everyday. Sensory Overload is not only sound but also smell, large crowds anything that your child can not handle.
On a few occasions, while shopping with my daughter, we have run into a teenage boy that has to wear sound surpressing
ear phones just to be able to coup.
Please visit our resource page, it will list a number of sites that could help you with this disorder. I would like to thank Linda from Caring4OurKids for all the information. PARENTS PLEASE TAKE NOTE ABOUT ESTATE PLANNING–DO NOT WAIT– DO IT NOW– PLEASE PROTECT YOUR KIDS
I am always apologizing for not posting often but as I have said before I am not good at social media, In fact I stink at it. For the last two months, all my time has been devoted to trying to prepare the driveway into the property. And redoing it over again because of the rain we have had. But I am glad to announce, that 100 tons of rock has been spread out, but I still have 11,000 tons of rock to haul in. All the contractors are extremely busy, so my one ton truck has been hauling all the rock (one and a half ton at a time). If I was lucky, I was able to haul 14 tons a day.
Now that the holidays are over and I do hope everyone enjoyed them, I am asking everyone to carry that loving feeling into everything they do every day of the coming year. Christmas is not about gifts, it is about the love and caring you share with everyone that you know and those that you don’t know.
installation of drain pipe
drain pipe under main drive
I hadn’t realized that it has been so long since I posted anything about the progress of the farm until I received a comment from Sherry.
For all that thought we gave up on the farm, we haven’t and never will. The farm will have close to two miles of roads and that is what I have been working on. Our local rock quarry (Vulcan) has been kind enough to donate the first 100 tons and has greatly discounted the other 1100 tons which we need to purchase by the end of December. They do not have delivery trucks so we are trying to arrange delivery but at $4.50 a ton for delivery and money being so tight. Things have slowed down. I tried to start a “GoFundMe” but with my great lack of computer skills I had no luck. A visitor took pity on this old man and helped me with it. As usual, I didn’t fully understand how “GoFundMe” works. In my mind, it was out there for everyone to see but he said it would be seen by my contacts only. With only four contacts, you can imagine the success we are having. I will post a couple of photos and write another post in a few days. But if you could let all of your contacts know about our “GoFundMe” project please do. We need HELP and soon.
Thank you for believing in my dreams and the future that Swallowtail Summit Farms can provide for so many autistic individuals. Remember, with your help all things CAN happen.
I just returned from a short trip and tried to catch up on some of the comments on the web site. I am still amazed that people view my post as insightful because most of them are written when I need to air my frustrations. When you get old, you review your past life including what you tried to accomplish and what little that you did accomplished. You wish you could correct your mistakes and do more than you could humanly ever do.
Since starting this dream of a group home and working to see its first resident move in, I have meet or talked to a number of parents with children with different levels of autism. We all have the same desires and dreams for our children, yet we lack a sure fire solution of how to obtain those dreams. I think that is why people think my post are interesting enough to read. Maybe, the post make them see part of themselves in them. We all are different yet so much alike.
When I started writing these post, I was hoping to inform and help parents find answers to questions about autism that when my daughter was young that I didn’t know where to turn. I will still try to do that but I am sure by now everyone who reads my post knows that I am not that well versed in all that is autism. But I think people need to see that others feel the same as they do. The frustration, the ups and downs and the feeling of somehow not being able of doing enough, in other words the feeling that we are failing our child. I am leaving the technical aspects of autism to the professionals.
Parents, with school resuming soon, please fight for the right kind of teacher for your child because NO ONE program fits every child. Our kids need people in their lives that care for them and that are willing to do whatever it takes to make them feel loved and worth something. SELF WORTH is a strong need for all of us, we all need a purpose in life. Look in their eyes when they accomplished a task and you will see the world in a new light. That look should be in ALL of our eyes, it is a wonderful sparkle that should never be lost, it lights up the heart.
I guess it’s time to write again especially after everything that is happening in this country and every where else. What has happened that has caused some people to miss out on what is important in life? Color,nationality,religion or status should not be how we view each other. We all are individuals and as such contribute something that is real and worth something, we NEED EACH OTHER.
When we watch small children play,there is no hatred and no prejudice just friendship and caring. What happens between childhood and adulthood? I have watched children and admired their simplicity and their willingness to accept each other without reservations. They could teach each and everyone of us how to live a simple and rewarding life that would benefit everyone. I hate hearing that a certain race’s life matters because EVERY life should matter to everyone. We need to revert back to our childhood and carry that respect and love for each other into our adult life. My life has been enriched by many people from all walks of life and disabilities and I cherish everything they shared with me. PLEASE look into the other person’s eyes and see them as a reflection of yourself and treat them as you would want to be treated.
My daughter went with me to one of my VA doctor appointments and as we were getting off the freeway their was a pregnant young women with a sign asking for money. She told me that we should help her but I felt that I should explain that some people do this as a living and that this women might be taking advantage of her. Her response was that she didn’t care because she didn’t want to think that she could be helping someone and didn’t, just because the women might be a fraud. She felt good giving every dollar she had and she made me proud of her because of how she felt.
People, we all can change and become a better person just by becoming child like again. A person’s worth is not how much you acquire in life or how far up the social latter you get. It’s that small piece of yourself that you leave behind in this world that is important, just make sure that small piece is worth leaving behind.