Pepsi Scam

Over the last week I have learned an important life lesson. 

Last week on Facebook, in a respectable group, there was a post about earning money to wrap your car with Pepsi stuff. I thought cool, I love Pepsi and can always use extra money. They asked for our mailing address to send the first payment of 300 dollars. Seemed legit, my dad had worked for Pepsi for years, so I trusted it. 

Then Friday, I get an email saying I would be getting the check the next day. I was to immediately deposit the check. But this check was going to be for 1950.78 dollars. I was to keep 300. And western union 1500 dollars to a man in California. This made me leery.

I responded with why am I supposed to wire money to someone. He said it was for the decal people. I said I wanted proof that this was a legit advertising campaign. He simply said this was not a scam.

Sooooooo, I followed my gut, and advice of my friends. I googled it. Well turns out this Pepsi car wrap thing is a common scam. I again emailed him asking for proof. He just bounced around the question.

I looked up the company that the check was written on, they are a huge investment company out of Boston. I emailed them. I emailed Pepsi.

Yesterday he emailed me that I just need to deposit the check, if it’s not real the bank wont deposit. Okay, I am not that stupid.

 

This morning, I called the issuing bank. Which is in Boston. The lady was very nice. She asked for the acct number. And the check number. She said that this acct only issues electronic checks and this one was never issued. I thanked her for her help.

Texted John and called the cops.

The police said this scam is very very common. That Pepsi is not involved, but also a victim. Because their name is dragged into it. And said that company the check supposedly came from is most likely not involved. 

The police officer said that the guy in the email most likely is not in the USA. And that the address I was to wire money to was a middle man who would then send OUR money overseas. Of course once the check would be declared false, our account would be massively in the hole. 

I am grateful that God gave me the good sense to not fall for it. I can see how people do though, When you are hurting for money and someone says they have a nice easy way to earn a bit, duh it’s tempting. 

 

The emails which I will keep for now are from a man named Andrew Billian. The check was issued by State Street Bank in Boston MA. And it was mailed from the University of California. 

Since there is nothing legally to be done about these scammers. I felt bringing attention to it via blog was a good way to spread the word. 

Looking at a check for 1900 dollars is nice. But it’s not worth the risk. Never accept a check from someone you dont know. Or a company you are not involved with. If your gut tells you something is wrong, it probably is right. It never hurts to check things out. It was very easy to find the bank and company on the check. And very easy to email Pepsi. Follow your instincts. Dont fall for this crap. I almost did. 

Eleven Years Old!!!!

Just saying Eleven Years Old seems so odd. Yes, my Kermit turned Eleven on January 23rd. I know many, including myself cannot believe it. Where has the time gone? It feels like just yesterday I was holding my newborn son and did not have even a clue of what was in store for us. Back then we were innocent, niave and clueless for sure. I was in the phase of ” nothing can go wrong”. “it can’t happen to me”. If only I knew then. No…wait……I would not want to know. I would want to stay clueless. Because if I had know when Kermit was born that he had autism and all the struggles he would face, I would have worried myself sick. I would have missed out on the joy of a brand new baby.

My point is, I would not change a thing. Who I am today, is because of those struggles, helping Kermit succeed, watching him fall and picking him up again. Those moments, minor to some, are so much more than that. People take for granted their childs babbling and never shutting up. My son did not say I love you or Mama until he was 6. The day he said I Love You Mom still is burned into my memory. He had spoken. He could have cussed me out, and I would still cherish it.

Our world has changed into a materialistic, egotistic world. It’s all about ME. And the little things are forgotten. Or so we think. Look at the world through an autisitic childs eyes. Kermit has told me what he notices. He notices the leaves moving, the smile on the old mans face, the exhaust from a car. The click of the train wheels. The monkies going off at the zoo. The LITTLE things we take for granted.

In the Eleven years since God blessed me with my son, I have become a better person. My son has made me a better person. The sky is the limit. He WILL succeed. He will be one of the many who are able to live independently, have a family and a college education. That is my hope for him. If Temple Grandin can do it, so can Kermit. Happy Birthday Buddy!

Time of Confusion

Throughout the last nearly 11 years I have become very aware of time. Time as in weeks, months and years have always been out there in plain view. But after Kermit was born, time became a tangible thing. 

His diagnosis of Autism slapped me across the face. I swear time froze that day at least for a few moments. Nothing made sense. I had done everything right, yet something was wrong with my son. Something I did not understand and something I could not fix. Time stood still.

Slowly it began to move again. At first it was minute to minute, trying to keep him happy and calm. I honestly gave into his every whim to keep him from melting down. Anything to keep him from screaming. 

Days seemed to blend together and one appointment was just like the other. When we no longer felt like we were making any progress we switched doctors. Over the years we have switched doctors several times. We even for a time drove 8 hours every 3 months to KC, KS to see Dr. Hellings. She was the only one who saw my child, not a diagnosis. Kermits current doctor is in Topeka and she too see him. She talks to us, not at us. And she answers questions. 

Today made me again think of Time. With Christmas just yesterday, Kermit is completely thrown off his routine. I mentioned to him today his attendant care worker was coming this afternoon, this simple statement started a 3 hour debate. His attendant care worker comes on Wednesdays, he swore it was Monday. I could completely understand his thinking. It sure felt like Monday. I went and showed him on the calendar and on the computer, but nope I was wrong. It was Monday. It was not until Kelly and Michael came on TV at 11am and Kelly said “today is Wednesday December 26th” Kermit turned to me and said “your right mom, it’s Wednesday way to go”

I must have had  a pretty stupid look on my face. I had given up on trying to convince him, I had just figure it’s Christmas break no big deal he’ll get the days straightened out. I guess TV does come in handy. 

It is amazing how much Time is important to Kermit. He obsesses over it. If you tell him your going to go somewhere, or have to be somewhere or going to do something and you give him a time, you had better be on time. If we say we are eating dinner at 6pm, and at 6:01pm dinner is not ready, he will let you know about it every second it takes to get it done.  He has yelled at his bus driver more than once for being late or even early. 

Time is precious, especially to kids like mine. 

It’s gonna snow

“It’s gonna snow” is what Kermit said to me this morning when he got up. I was not even watching the news. I asked how he knew it was gonna snow, and he simple said “Cause it is” If only I could understand what it that makes my son tick. If only I could read his mind……

Hold on, no wait I don’t wanna read his mind. LOL He is a guy after all. He’s amazing really. 

Really hard to believe how far he has come. His teachers dont even believe me when I say he was non-verbal. They did not know him back then. We lived in another world back then. We lived in a world of meltdowns, screaming, pointing and stress filled days. That is what he was like in Garden City. No matter what I tried or did I could not make any progress with him. 

When he was 5, I was told that he would not talk. He was still in diapers. Elizabeth was 2. I was so stressed. But I never gave up. I pushed forward, I fought for him. 

5 years later here we are. Established(finally) in Emporia. He’s in a wonderful school that treats him like any other kid. He spends most his days in school in the regular classroom. And…………HE TALKS. Yep he talks. A lot. LOL. When I get annoyed with the constant chatter I just remind myself that he used to never utter a word. Now he does, so I just shut up and let him repeat commercials or tell me about some toy or tv show I have no clue about. He can obsess over a tv show he watches and tell you every detail about it. His attention to detail when it comes to something that interests him is amazing. 

He recently was learning about Abraham Lincoln in school. He could not wait to tell me all he had learned. I was excited to see him so interested in history. So interested in details. 

Yes, Kermit it is going to snow. The weatherman is adamant that it’s going to snow. Mommy is cussing the weatherman, but you my little man I trust your prediction and will not cuss you. LOL

How do you say?

The events of last Friday are haunting our country. 20 precious children(my daughters age) were brutally murdered along with 6 school teachers and staff. As the news broke and more and more information became knowledge to us all, my heart broke. I could not grasp the fact that anyone could do such a thing. I could not wrap my mind around it. 

Then, suddenly it was being thrown around that the shooter has Aspergers. That floored me. I have NEVER met anyone with just ASD that had such rage, and disregard for human life. I will not type his name because I will not glorify him. 

I am not expert on Autism, but I know from my own experiences with my son that he would never intentionally hurt anyone. When he saw the news he started to cry, then he became angry and yelled “people should not do that!” My daughter is is 7 years old just last night as I was brushing her hair said “mommy, there is a mom in Connecticut who is crying because she can’t brush her daughters hair anymore” The thoughts of my children, the loss of innocense is alarming. Why in the world must my 7 year old think about someone else whose child is dead? Why must our kids be exposed to such violence, sadness and hate? 

I do not blame guns. I do not blame the mother. I blame whatever was wrong with that man. Nothing could of stopped him. They are yelling gun control, but the weapons he used were legally purchased and licensed by his mom. Her only fault was having a mentally disturbed person in the home and not having them locked up. 

I am mainly venting in this blog entry. Sorry if I ramble. What brought this about was this morning. I took my son to a specialist appt in KC. He has serious sensory issues that affect what he will eat and his cholestrol is way too high. He has a service dog. Someone asked what the dog was for, and I said she is an Autism Service Dog. They said ‘Autism?’ and backed away from my child then declared ” that is what that murderer had”. First off, my son has never hurt anyone. Second, he’s not contagious and third, what kind of person would spew that garbage in front of a child? It took every ounce of my being to not tell her to go to hell.

As I hold my children close and thank God for letting me be a part of their lives. I will do my best to keep them safe, knowing that I may not be able to always do that. I will not take for granted the hugs and kisses. I will not ignore the small things. 

Autism is part of my life. It’s part of my families life. All I ask is please think before you speak. Please bite your tongues on stupid, judgemental comments. And please do not judge my child for the actions of a psychotic murderer. They are no where near the same thing. Hug your babies. And don’t lose faith. If we lose faith, we lose all.

Gold Medalist

When most people thing of a disabled person, they think picture the person unresponsive, anti-social, child like.

But most people/children I know that are disabled are better people than most. They don’t take anything for granted. They are not quick to judge anyone. They accept people at face value.

One thing Kermit has been blessed to be a part of is the Special Olympics. This group accepts him for who he is. He does his best and that’s okay. No one makes fun if he misses the ball, no laughs if he does not succeed. It’s a very accepting and fun group to be with. His coaches are awesome. Loving and just plain wonderful. 

Saturday, Kermit bowled in Kansas State Special Olympics Bowling Tournament in Kansas City. He bowled a 81 and a 98. He worked hard and earned a gold medal!  He was so happy. He was having fun the whole time. Not one meltdown! 

To be able to see my son, who doctors had told me would never talk or socialize, be able to express himself and be proud of himself brought tears to my eyes. To see him succeed, where some thought he would fail. To prove the professionals wrong.

Kermit may not be “normal”. He makes funny noises that can be annoying and disruptive. But he is still a person and he is special. He is loved by a ton of people.  And he is now a Special Olympic Gold Medalist! Go Kermie!

Struggles and successes

Every six months, Kermit’s psychitrist orders labs. His meds he takes can mess with him, so it’s better to stay on top of things. For the first time in 10 years, his labs came back abnormal. Went in to see his medical doctor who said one of the labs was just fine, but his triglycerides was twice as high as it should be. He suggested a cholesterol lowering diet. Well when your child has Sensory Intergration Disorder and Autism that’s really hard to do. So now I am on a search for a nutritionist who has a clue about sensory issues and autism. I will be calling Children’s Mercy and KU Medical Center in KC tomorrow.  We also had to get xrays of Kermit’s foot. He has been complaining it hurts for a couple weeks, and the doctor said it was swollen. So now we wait for the results of that. He said if the xray showed nothing, he would order a MRI to check the tendons. Thank god for the SED waiver. LOL

On a happy note, Kermit is getting excited about the State Special Olympics bowling tournament in a couple of weeks. He and I will be staying in KC overnight just us. Elizabeth is staying with a dear friend from church. John and Andrew will be in Topeka for District Youth Gathering. I am hoping it all goes well. I did manage to reserve a room at least. LOL

Daylight savings ends Saturday night and that always messes with Kermit. Hell it messes with me. But at least we gain an hour. 

I seriously need to keep up with this.