Friday, February 19, 2016

I don't have Autism.. I'm just doing what I love! -Talk Time host Reid Moriarty

When I met Reid Moriarty, host of Talk Time, I asked him why he liked being a podcast show host.  His lighthearted answer was, "I like to ask questions and hear people respond!"  And what a talented interviewer he is!  I instantly loved Reid and his mom Andrea when they walked into my studio.  It was like we had known each other forever and the conversation and chitchat was as easy as pie!  What struck me right away about Reid was how quickly and easily he said hello.  He looked at me, and stayed connected and was thrilled to be meeting me.. I was so touched, and honestly, that's what drew me to Reid.  I was also drawn to his witty, unencumbered curiosity as he interviewed me.  His life challenges don't precede him, but his passion, for his work and people, does!  Reid's mom, Andrea, accompanies him and watches over him like any other special needs mom does, but, what impressed me about her is that she does it in a way that dignifies him and shows him respect.  She wants him to enjoy life and keep that delightful personality and all the things that make Reid who he is, but she stays close enough to be there if he reaches a breaking point and needs a soft spot to fall.  Andrea writes about her experience in finding Reid's special interest and how that's helped him beat the odds that could seem to be stacked against him.  Instead, because he's living his dream, and has unbelievable support from those around him, his focus can continue to be on being unbelievably AWESOME!!

Listen to me interview Reid:
Get Andrea's book on Amazon!

Michelle Fischer is host of  A View from My Window, a podcast produced, by The Arc of Indiana

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Behind the Mic Book Review: Life is Short (no pun intended) Bill Kleinand Jen Arnold

Since I started watching the Little Couple in 2009, I've never missed an episode and whenever I have to wait for a new season to start, it seems like an eternity!!  I find myself missing Bill, Jen, Will and Zoey.  So, when I saw that they had a book coming out, I knew I had to read it.  This book made me cry, so hard at times, because of this family's determination to allow nothing to deter them from enjoying life, love and parenthood!  Life is very challenging and rocky at times, but it's your reaction to those challenges that determines how successful you are in overcoming them.  Bill and Jen have had their share of challenges, that's for sure.  They've had to deal with the physical challenges of their dwarfism, which included countless surgeries and recoveries, but also the challenges that come with life in an average sized world.  This book takes you through their lives, from both Bill and Jen's perspectives, including all the ups and downs.  From the highest of highs which included Jen getting her dream job of becoming a doctor in pediatric and neonatal medicine, finding the love of her life when she least expected it and having the chance to adopt two of the cutest, funniest kids from two different countries.  One of her lowest points was a heartbreaking cancer diagnosis during the time they were going through the adoption process.  Bill had felt like he wanted to end it all before he met Jen.  The overall theme of this book is there will be challenges that try to knock you down, but you can overcome them if you drown out the noise of negative thinking, feeling sorry for yourself or people telling you that you won't ever be able to accomplish what you want.  Bill and Jen have risen up to the challenge, and look how their life has turned out!!  They were both told growing up that they could do whatever they wanted in accomplishing their own individual dreams, and now together...well, the attitude of "Nothing is Impossible"  has double the power!  This book is one of the best books I've read.  You laugh, cry, cheer and smile all at the same time.  Bill and Jen's short stature hasn't stopped them from accomplishing incredibly BIG, above average dreams!!! 

Bill, Jen, Will and Zoey...Thank you for sharing your story and your lives with all your fans!  All of you are a shining example of what it means to take life by the horns and run with it!! :) :)

Michelle Fischer is the host of A View from My Window a podcast produced by The Arc of Indiana

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Sprout: Opening up the world of Acting and Traveling to the disabilitycommunity

I've always loved the nature shows on TV where the host gives you a guided tour into the sites and sounds of another country, city or culture.  I get so excited, almost giddy, to tell the truth.  I can't wait to breathe in the new surroundings as the camera angles just draw you in.  The way those shows are produced gives you the experience of a lifetime without leaving your living room!  I've always been a lover of stage shows and musicals.  In fact, you will eventually hear me say that I want to be on the stage.  Both art forms allow you to transport yourself to another place and time.  I've had the pleasure of interviewing Executive Director of Sprout, Anthony Di Salvo, and was delighted to find that he adores what he does and the impact that he and his staff have on the lives of the people they serve!!  How do they do this, you ask?  Sprout is a non-profit organization that is dedicated to helping people with developmental disabilities grow through challenging, creative and fun experiences that enhance socialization, self-confidence and inclusion.  Creative fun experiences and inclusion??  You had me at hello!  Their travel program offers opportunities to it's participants, in the company of their peers, with the support and supervision of Sprout Leaders.  Some of the trip options include Lake George, Cape Cod, Orlando and Washington D.C., to name a few.  Over the years, international travel to places like Mexico, Italy, France, Spain and Germany have been offered, too.  And guess what??  Not only does Sprout have a travel program, but they also have film programs where participants are taught everything there is to know about filmmaking and acting!  Something else I love is that Sprout is in New York City.  I ADORE New York City!  The MECCA of artistic expression, especially on the stage.  Really there is not enough space on this virtual paper to tell you all about this fabulous organization... You MUST find out more for yourself!  Here's the website..
Anthony raising Disability Awareness :)
Here's where the showing of the films happen!
Love that Marquee!

If you are someone who is looking to travel and get out of your comfort zone and experience different cultures and meet new people.. Well, Sprout is for YOU!!  Oh, and when you meet Anthony, tell him Michelle sent ya..and thank him for what he has done for the disability community.  It's truly fantastic!

Safe travels on seeing the world and I hope you continue to get many standing ovations for your outstanding performances.....                     GO SPROUT!! :)

Hear Anthony talk about all things Sprout, Here:

Michelle Fischer is host of A View from My Window, a podcast produced by The Arc of Indiana