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SIRRI Arizona

 

 

 

February 2011

Information Session

Wednesday, February 16th

6:30 PM - 8:30 PM

 

More Information


Please contact SIRRI

at (480) 777-7075 or e-mail

to reserve your seat(s).


If you are unable to attend,

please call for a free

one-on-one Consultation.

Gluten-Free Recipe:

Red Velvet Cupcakes

 

 


Ingredients:

Serves: 12

Yield: 24 cupcakes

  • 1 (15 ounce) box betty crocker gluten free yellow cake mix
  • 1 (3 1/2 ounce) package chocolate-flavored instant pudding (Jello brand is gluten free) or 1 (3 1/2 ounce) package pie filling (Jello brand is gluten free)
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened (no substitutes)
  • 8 ounces sour cream
  • 3 eggs
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons red food coloring (McCormicks and Tones are GF)
  • 8 ounces cold cream cheese (Philadelphia is gluten-free)
  • 5 tablespoons softened butter
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 pinch salt

Directions:

Prep Time: 20 mins

Total Time: 40 mins

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F
  2. Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl at medium speed until smooth, about 2 minutes.
  3. Once combined, spoon the mixture into muffin pans lined with cupcake liners. Bake for 16 – 20 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean when you stick it in the center.
  4. Let the cupcakes cool in the pans for five minutes, then carefully remove them and place them on cooling racks.
  5. For the Frosting: Beat the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla until combined (but do not whip). Add salt.
  6. Gradually add powdered sugar with the mixer on slow until desired sweetness/texture.
  7. These cupcakes should be kept in the refrigerator if they aren’t eaten within 12-24 hours due to the cream cheese frosting.


Read more: http://www.food.com/recipe/easy-gluten-free-red-velvet-cupcakes-437479#ixzz1DxulRiky

VALENTINE'S DAY FACTS

Looking for Love

141 million Valentine's Day cards are exchanged annually, making Valentine's Day the second-most popular greeting-card-giving occasion. (This total excludes packaged kids valentines for classroom exchanges.) (Source: Hallmark research)

Over 50 percent of all Valentine's Day cards are purchased in the six days prior to the observance, making Valentine's Day a procrastinator's delight. (Source: Hallmark research)

Research reveals that more than half of the U.S. population celebrates Valentine's Day by purchasing a greeting card. (Source: Hallmark research)

There are 119 single men (i.e., never married, widowed or divorced) who are in their 20s for every 100 single women of the same ages. Corresponding numbers for the following race and ethnic groups are:

  • Hispanics: 153 men per 100 women
  • Asians (single race): 132 men per 100 women (This ratio is not significantly different from that for Hispanics or non-Hispanic whites.)
  • Non-Hispanic whites (single race): 120 men per 100 women
  • Blacks (single race): 92 men per 100 women (The numbers of black men and women in this age group are not significantly different from one another.

There are 34 single men (i.e., never married, widowed or divorced) age 65 or older for every 100 single women of the same ages. Corresponding numbers for the following race and ethnic groups are:

  • Hispanics: 38 men per 100 women
  • Non-Hispanic whites (single race): 33 men per 100 women
  • Blacks (single race): 33 men per 100 women
  • Asians (single race): 28 men per 100 women

(Note: None of the ratios for the individual groups differ significantly from one another nor from the ratio for all people age 65 or older.)

904: The number of dating service establishments nationwide as of 2002. These establishments, which include Internet dating services, employed nearly 4,300 people and pulled in $489 million in revenues.

Be Mine

2.2 million marriages take place in the United States annually. That breaks down to more than 6,000 a day.

112,185 marriages were performed in Nevada during 2008. So many couples "tie the knot" in the Silver State that it ranked fourth nationally in marriages, even though it's total population that year among states was 35th.

The estimated U.S. median ages at first marriage for women and men are 25.9 and 27.6 respectively, in 2008. The age for women rose 4.2 years in the last three decades. The age for men at first marriage is up 3.6 years.

Men and women in northeastern states generally have a higher median age at first marriage than the national average. In Massachusetts, for example, women were a median of 27.4 years old and men 29.1 years of age at first marriage. States where people typically marry young include Utah, where women were a median of 21.9 years and men, 23.9 years.

57% and 60% of American women and men, respectively, are 15 or older and currently married (includes those who are separated).

70%: The percentage of men and women ages 30 to 34 in 2008 who had been married at some point in their lives - either currently or formerly.

4.9 million opposite-sex cohabitating couples maintained households in 2005. These couples comprised 4.3 percent of all households.

Candy is Dandy

1,241: The number of locations producing chocolate and cocoa products in 2004. These establishments employed 43,322 people. California  led the nation in the number of such establishments with 136, followed by Pennsylvania with 122. (Source:http://www.census.gov/prod/www/abs/cbptotal.html)

515 locations produced nonchocolate confectionary products in 2004. These establishments employed 22,234 people.

The total value of shipments in 2004 for firms producing chocolate and cocoa products was $13.9 billion. Nonchocolate confectionery product manufacturing, meanwhile, was a $5.7 billion industry.

3,467 Number of confectionery and nut stores in the United States in 2004. Often referred to as candy stores, they are among the best sources of sweets for Valentine's Day.

The per capita consumption of candy by Americans in 2005 was 25.7 pounds. Candy consumption has actually declined over the last few years; in 1997, each American gobbled or savored more than 27 pounds of candy a year.

Flowers

The combined wholesale value of domestically produced cut flowers in 2005 for all flower-producing operations with $100,000 or more in sales was $397 million. Among states, California was the leading producer, alone accounting for nearly three-quarters of this amount ($289 million).

The combined wholesale value of domestically produced cut roses in 2005 for all operations with $100,000 or more in sales was $39 million. Among all types of cut flowers, roses were third in receipts ($39 million)to lilies ($76.9 million) and tulips ($39.1 million).

There were 21,667 florists nationwide in 2004. These businesses employed 109,915 people.

Jewelry

There were 28,772 jewelry stores in the United States in 2004. Jewelry stores offer engagement, wedding and other rings to lovers of all ages. In February 2006, these stores sold $2.6 billion worth of merchandise. (This figure has not been adjusted for seasonal variation, holiday or trading day differences or price changes). The merchandise at these locations could well have been produced at one of the nation's 1,864 jewelry manufacturing establishments. The manufacture of jewelry was an $9 billion industry in 2004.

 

 

Handwriting Problems Affect Children With Autism Into the Teenage Years

ScienceDaily (Feb. 11, 2011)

A new study suggests that the handwriting problems that affect children with autism are likely to continue into their teenage years. The research is published in the November 16, 2010, issue of Neurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

 

The study included 24 girls and boys between the age of 12 and 16. Half of the group had autism spectrum disorder and all of the teenagers scored within the normal range of perceptual reasoning on an IQ test.

 

The teens were given the Minnesota Handwriting Assessment Test, which uses a scrambled sentence to eliminate any speed advantage for more fluent readers. The sentence used on the test was "the brown jumped lazy fox quick dogs over." Participants were asked to copy the words in the sentence, making the letters the same size and shape as the sample using their best handwriting.

 

The handwriting was scored based on five categories: legibility, form, alignment, size and spacing. The teenagers' motor skills, including balance and timed movements, were also examined and given a rating.

 

The research found that the teenagers with autism earned 167 points out of 204 total possible points on the handwriting assessment, compared to the 183 points scored by teens in the group without autism. These results showed statistical significance in the study. The teenagers with autism also had motor skill impairments.

 

Handwriting performance in adolescents with autism was predicted by perceptual reasoning scores, which reflect a person's ability to reason through problems with nonverbal material. "That reasoning skills can predict handwriting performance suggests a possible strategy by which adolescents with autism could learn and utilize compensatory strategies to overcome motor impairments," said study author Amy Bastian, PhD, of the Kennedy Krieger Institute and Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore, MD.

 

"While teenagers with autism are more likely to have handwriting problems, there are several techniques available to improve handwriting quality, such as adjusting pencil grip, stabilizing the writing hand with the opposite hand or forming letters more slowly. These therapies could help teens with autism to progress academically and develop socially," said Bastian.

 

The study was supported by Autism Speaks Pre-Doctoral Fellowship and the National Institutes of Health.

 

About Autism

Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) is the nation's fastest growing developmental disorder, with current incidence rates estimated at 1 in 110 children. This year more children will be diagnosed with autism than AIDS, diabetes and cancer combined, yet profound gaps remain in our understanding of both the causes and cures of the disorder. Continued research and education about developmental disruptions in individuals with ASD is crucial, as early detection and intervention can lead to improved outcomes in individuals with ASD.


 

American Academy of Neurology (2011, February 11). Handwriting problems affect children with autism into the teenage years. ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 14, 2011, from http://www.sciencedaily.com­ /releases/2010/11/101115173843.htm


Trial and Error: The Brain Learns from Mistakes 

 ScienceDaily (Feb. 14, 2011)

In the developing brain, countless nerve connections are made which turn out to be inappropriate and as a result must eventually be removed. The process of establishing a neuronal network does not always prove precise or error free. Dr. Peter Scheiffele's research group at the Biozentrum of the University of Basel have been able to document this phenomenon using advanced microscopy techniques in the developing cerebellum, a brain area required for fine movement control. Dr. Scheiffele's group has discovered that a protein traditionally associated with bone development is responsible for correcting errors while neurons connect to their correct partners in the cerebellum.

Their results will be published next week in the online, open access journal PLoS Biology.

 

The brain is a highly complex set of neuronal networks, in which thousands of different neuron types establish neuronal connections, called synapses, with other neurons. To establish these synapses, neurons send out axons from their cell bodies, which are fiber like extensions that extend into the various regions of the brain. Each neuron must connect with particular partner neurons during brain development, and it is this precise specificity which allows different circuits and different brain regions to serve different functions. The cerebellum, for example, has very precise connectivity that allows the brain to use sensory information (input) and convert it into an exact motor response (output). There are a number of cell types in the cerebellum, two of which are Purkinje cells and granule cells. Mossy fibers are a group of inputs in the cerebellum, which make synaptic connections only with granule cells.

 

In their study, however, Dr. Scheiffele's group have now been able to demonstrate that these mossy fiber inputs often connect with Purkinje neurons during early brain development, in addition to granule cells. These incorrect Purkinje connections are then subsequently eliminated within a week, establishing proper specificity in the cerebellum. They also find that Bone morphogenetic protein 4 (BMP4) helps correct these initial errors. Originally, BMP4 was linked with the specialization of cells during osteogenesis. That this protein is also responsible for the stability and removal of neuronal connections was not previously known.

 

"If inappropriate connections between neurons are not subsequently eliminated, this can lead to substantial disturbances in the brain. Autism could also be linked to this form of failure to correct errors," explains Scheiffele. The research group at the Biozentrum used a genetic mouse model to make their observations. With the help of a fluorescent protein, the different nerve connections could be stained and made visible by an advanced imaging technique that combines light microscopy with electron microscopy. This allowed multiple types of changes in connectivity to be traced. "These processes can be applied to the development of the human brain and could play an important role in further brain research," added Scheiffele.

 

The brain undergoes drastic changes during its early life. While the neuronal connections in the brain of a newborn are still relatively unspecific, the selectivity of the synapses steadily increases. The question of what advantage these short-lived, inappropriate connections serve during brain development will become a major focus of Dr. Scheiffele's future research, in addition to their potential implications for neurological disorders such as autism, schizophrenia, and epilepsy.

 

 

Public Library of Science (2011, February 14). Trial and error: The brain learns from mistakes. ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 14, 2011, from http://www.sciencedaily.com­ /releases/2011/02/110208171436.htm

Did You Know?

You may have been a client prior to SIRRI offering these services for both children & adults:

  • Neurofeedback & Biofeedback
  • qEEG / Brain Mapping
  • Cognitive Retraining: memory, processing & problem solving skills
  • Attention, Concentration & Focus Training
  • Reading Development: fluency & comprehension
  • Balance, Coordination & Motor Planning Development
  • Stress & Anxiety Management
  • IEP Advocacy

Upcoming 2011 Session Dates

for the Sensory Learning Program:

 

Monday February 28 through Friday March 11

Monday March 14 through Friday March 25

Monday March 28 through Friday April 8

Monday April 11 through Friday April 22

Monday May 16 through Friday May 27

Monday June 6 through Friday June 17

Monday June 18 through Friday July 1


SIRRI Arizona • 4515 S. McClintock Drive, Suite 208 • Tempe, AZ 85282
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