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My grandfathers both used typewriters. It was a big part of who they were. Maybe that’s why I’ve always loved old typewriters. Or maybe it’s just one of those preferences you can’t really explain, like why I prefer chocolate over strawberry ice cream (which my dad and daughter both love!).

Whatever the case, this is the place to learn about Cynthia J. Patton, award-winning author, speaker, attorney, and autism advocate. I’m also the mother of a smart, stubborn, beautiful, somewhat verbal autistic daughter. It probably goes without saying that I’m juggling a ton of stuff—like every working mother—and doing my best to write in the midst of life’s chaos. This website will celebrate that struggle for balance and the crazy twists and turns life can take. So check back often. We’re going to have fun.




Summer Vacation Redux

It’s August, and while many kids are going back to school this week or next, my daughter just finished summer session. (Open Mind School operates year-round.) Katie has a three-week break before school starts up again. I’m embracing this out-of-sync-ness. … Continue reading

What Happens at Camp Arroyo, Stays at Camp Arroyo, Year 3

Last week, my daughter Katie attended Camp Arroyo, which is where the Exceptional Needs Network (ENN) holds its summer camp for special needs children in conjunction with the Taylor Family Foundation. This was her third year. The camp may be … Continue reading

Katie’s at Camp Arroyo (Again)!

Yesterday I dropped Katie off at Camp Arroyo. This is her third time at the Exceptional Needs Network’s summer camp for children with special needs. To say she was excited would be an understatement. I was pretty excited too. (Still … Continue reading

Testimonial for Open Mind School

Last week, I posted about writing a testimonial for my daughter’s fabulous school. After it was published, several people wrote asking what my testimonial said. I told them I had paraphrased it pretty well, but they wanted to read my … Continue reading

Gratitude for Attitude (School Update #2)

As part of our effort to save the new building in Menlo Park for my daughter’s fabulous school, many of the parents wrote testimonials. After I helped Marina Vaserman, Director of Open Mind School, write a killer advocacy letter to … Continue reading

Summer Vacation

It’s summer and my daughter Katie has a two-week break before summer school starts. (Actually Open Mind School is a year-round school, so it’s just regular school that happens in the summer months.) So we are off enjoying the warm … Continue reading

It’s Official! I’m Poet Laureate

On Monday, June 26th, I was sworn in as the City of Livermore’s fourth Poet Laureate. The Commission for the Arts notified me of its selection a few weeks ago, but I wanted to wait to make the announcement until … Continue reading

Small But Mighty

As I wrote before, Open Mind School (OMS), my daughter’s fantastic new school in Redwood City, was being kicked out of its current location by Oracle’s childcare provider and then lost its new location in Menlo Park to Facebook. We … Continue reading

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