Do You Need to Name an Executor of Your Estate? Seven Questions and Answers to Help You Decide.

Estates vary regarding valuation and complexity. In its simplest definition, if you own assets, you have an estate. If you also have debts and/or a will, you may need someone to settle your estate when you die. “Most individuals understand the importance of creating a financial strategy or a life care plan1 for their family, especially when a family member has special needs” says Connor W. Kavanaugh, who is a Special Care Planner2 with MassMutual-Oregon3 […]

How We Made Our Vacation Work for Sammy and the Family

Is it truly vacation if we are constantly hovering over Sammy to make sure he doesn’t ruin something that doesn’t belong to us? Going away is supposed to be an exciting activity for most yet, at the same time, finding the right vacation spot can end up being a big stressor. My family and I know this from experience. We’ve always needed to find vacations that fit the needs of my brother, Sammy, who has […]

An Indoor And Inclusive Play-Away Room Can Be A Building Block For Happy Children

AN EP HOME IMPROVEMENT EXCLUSIVE BY CHARLES M SCHWAB ARCHITECT, AIA, UNIVERSAL DESIGNED AND SUSTAINABLE ARCHITECTURE “Play is the highest form of research,” noted Einstein. So let’s take a look at how your little Einstein’s, or Dr. Frankenstein’s, as the case may be, can play safely and creatively in an interior space within your home. Let’s design a Play-Away Room, designed specifically for inclusive play for your children and their playmates. Play is learning and […]

FLIP Your Child’s Summer Vacation

EP TRAVEL EDITION BY MICHELLE RANALDO Get out that map and have your child pick a place they would like to explore. With the help of the internet and local library resources, let them lead the way. Although my son is an adult now, we have had many memorable vacations and still travel together as much as our schedules allow. We often planned our vacations with his interests in mind although we added several of […]

Travel With No Limitations!

EP TRAVEL EDITION BY JENNIFER WOODWORTH, PSY.D PLANNING YOUR TRAVEL Where are you off to? Visiting family, relocating due to PCS orders, or planning a vacation can influence travel options based on type of travel available, distance to your destination, and length of stay. The first part of any plan is deciding where to go and what type of travel will be available; by car, plane, train, or boat. Your child’s mobility and necessary equipment […]

Engineering A Very Special Project

For 25 years, University of Tulsa (TU) engineering students have completed their senior project by working with children with special needs, designing and building every day products in a way that is easy for them to use. This year, students designed and built a small portable kitchen to offer a variety of tactile and auditory experiences for children with developmental challenges, allowing them to participate in mixing, chopping, slicing and dicing. The senior design project […]

The Best Laid Schemes

LIVING WITH A DISABILITY BY JERRY LEVINSON My GP diagnosed the problem as a pinched nerve, likely caused by use of the STS machine that had forced my spinal column and vertebrae into a position they had not been in in years. The title of this column is taken from a line in Robert Burns’ 1786 poem “To a Mouse” that reads “The best laid schemes of mice and men often go awry.” Truer words […]

Financial Matters to Consider When a Family Member’s Death is Expected

A family member’s death and the grief we feel is difficult to endure, especially if the death is sudden and shocking. But sometimes we know in advance a person’s life will soon end. “Expecting a death doesn’t minimize grief,” says Leizer Gewirtzman1, CPA, ChSNC, who is a Special Care Planner2 with Lee, Nolan and Koroghlian, LLC3 in Saddle Brook, New Jersey, a general agency of Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual). “However, it allows time […]

10 Ways to Reach Out to the Autism Community

BY KIMBERLEE RUTAN MCCAFFERTY Eleven years ago, my eldest son Justin was diagnosed with moderate to severe autism. At the time I didn’t know any other families with autistic children other than the ones I’d had in my homeroom as a teacher, and those children were much older than my son. I didn’t know who to turn to for help in supplementing the scant eight hours of services Justin was receiving each month from Virginia’s […]

How to Raise Funds for Children with Disabilities

NEW RESOURCE BY MELANIE DAVIS The Funding Guide for Children with Disabilities focuses on the author’s proven process for applying for support from the various funding sources that assist children. It also includes a directory of over 200 funding sources divided into three categories: National, State and Wish Funders. For more than a decade, Tamara Simmons has been assisting families in raising the funds they lack to cover assistive technology and other expenses for their […]