Saturday, August 23, 2008

Sunday Sound Out

First, I want to thank all my readers for being so awesome! You guys seriously lift me up and make me feel better regularly! I'm blessed to have you guys and sure hope we get the chance to meet when my book comes out.

Speaking of, a few people have asked me when my book is coming out. It's scheduled to be released Mother's Day, 2009. I think Mother's Day is the perfect time for my book to come out, don't you? Plus, it was originally going to be released as a hard cover, but the publishers are now thinking they'll release it as a paperback which is good news for us moms who are on budgets! I know the amazing folks at Guideposts are planning some really great, fun things for when it comes out, but I can't tell you any details. Mainly because they haven't told me yet! (I hate secrets!) But I have no doubts it'll be good! :)

And speaking of Guideposts, check out their newly designed website! It's so cool! And right now, there are pictures of Ty Pennington on it! Woo Hoo! Run, go check him it out! Seriously, if you've never read a Guidepost magazine, you're missing out. It's SO inspiring. You'll walk away from it just feeling GOOD! Their website's the same! It's super-easy to navigate and it's full of interesting, fun, informative, inspiring stories.

I was reading comments like I do most every morning, and I came to one that said something like, "I was laughing so hard that my 13 year old looked at me like I'd grown 10 heads, in that way a 13 year can do....." That's all I read because my hand slipped and I accidentally deleted it. I'm sorry. I just wanted the writer of the comment to know that I hadn't purposely rejected it. And I'm bummed I didn't get to finish reading it!

OK, without further ado, here are the answers to life's pressing questions...

Is is wrong that I feel famous because two (count 'em, TWO!) of my comments/questions made it into this week's SSO?
Probably. But that's ok. :D

Good news! Banana Splits is coming back to the Cartoon Network this fall.Are you humming the theme yet, lol?

Hahahaha my 10 year old went back to school today...oh it was so nice and quiet. Sorry I just had to bloat!
Ooo I hope I don't bloat when my kids go back to school! (Sorry, I couldn't resist.)

My kids explode everywhere they go. You're not giving me much hope that as they get older it gets better...unless your 3 youngest are totally to blame.
It's the youngest 4 who make all the messes. Thankfully, Austin and Savannah have learned (as much as a kid can learn) to clean up after themselves. See? There's still hope.

Remember back in the beginning of summer you were looking forward to the kids being home?
I remember writing that by the time August rolled around, I would deny ever looking forward to school getting out!

I have an unrelated question. I just started a blog, the intent to keep family and friends up to date on our life these days. I decided to make it a public site to make things easier - no one has to "sign-in". I have all the security settings on the highest except for the fact that it's public. I hesitated slightly at making it public since there are pictures and descriptions of my kids all over it. So I'm wondering, since your blog is very well read, do you ever feel like you're living in a fishbowl hoping no creeps are looking in? Do you do anything extra/special in the name of safety?
Good question. When I first started my blog, I used fake names for my kids. After my auction took off and my blog went from 5 hits a day to 94,000 hits a day, people started calling me for interviews. The first one that called, The St. Petersburg Times, asked for my full name and the names and ages of my kids. I told her I didn't want to give out that information. She replied that she wouldn't be able to interview me without it. I told her I'd think about it and hung up. I called all my friends and family for advice; I prayed about what to do. Based on the advice I was given and what I felt in my gut, I went ahead and disclosed all that information. If I hadn't, I wouldn't have been interviewed and may not be in the place I'm in today with a book coming out in a few months. It's a personal matter that you'll have to decide for yourself though and there are a lot of things to take into consideration. At BlogHer there was a session all about this very topic that I think you'll find interesting and informative. HERE's a link to the live blog about that session from BlogHer '08.

The diet doesn't seem to be working for my son after 3 months on it. Do you have any other ideas that I could try before we do meds? Just wondering.
First off, I know people have a lot of strong opinions on whether or not to use medication for ADHD, but I really think you have to make the decision based on what's right for your child and your family. The way I look at it - if my kid had diabetes, I wouldn't hesitate to give him the insulin he needed. I don't personally think ADHD is any different. It's a chemical imbalance in the brain that can be treated.

That said, if you want to avoid medication, trying an all natural diet can help. Make sure you check food labels carefully. Learn the different terms used. For instance, a label might not read "artificial vanilla". Instead it might read "vanillin" which is just another word for artificial vanilla. A cereal may not have artificial ingredients in it, but the packaging may contain TBHQ which is an artificial preservative that will be absorbed by the cereal in the box. Be aware that there can be a lot of hidden ingredients.

For some kids, therapy can help. I think all kids (especially ADHD ones) strive on a routine. A rewards system works for a lot of kids too. My son loves to earn stuff. If he accomplishes A,B & C, he can earn a privilege or small treat. Like a lot of ADHD kids, he really wants to do well and please people. He just has a hard time controlling himself enough to do it.

People have suggested other things to me like fish oil, and other vitamin/herbal supplements. I've not personally tried any of them, but it might be something you'd like to look into. Research online and or ask your pediatrician about it.

Dawn, You should get a Wii fit. It is fun, entertaining and hilarious.
I would love to actually! I got to try one back in April when I went to Johnson's Camp Baby. Unfortunately, Nintendo's production and distribution never seems to meet demands when they release a new product. I have yet to see a Wii fit in a store anywhere. The Nintendo rep at the BlogHer conference told me that Nintendo was increasing production and I should be able find them in stores within a couple weeks. Notsomuch.

Hi, I just started reading your blog, and was wondering what you're treating for Jackson with the diet... ADHD?
Yep. He had to go off meds because they gave him high blood pressure. The diet doesn't work as well as the medication did, but it certainly helps. Plus, it doesn't give him high blood pressure!

I laughed out loud no less than five times. and how the heck did u get the paper to look so spiffy and bright and new? obviously those aren't pictures of the spill it:)
I just scanned them. Voila!

Did you show your older kids [your old schoolwork and drawings]?
Yep. Austin laughed his head off with me. Savannah just gave me a withered look that said, your drawings are lame and so are you.

Dawn, I love this post! I was able to figure out most of them, but I appreciate your help in translating a few. Did you know what they were because you remember your writing and spelling and what you were drawing back then or because you're used to figuring it out from your own brood?
I don't remember what I had for lunch let alone something I wrote in first grade! I knew what they said because I have kids who spell the same way.

I've been wondering...I only have 2 boys and it seems like every night one of them (usually the 3 year old) calls me or comes to find me for something (bathroom run, needing company, because he is lonely, etc.) your kids come looking for you in the middle of the night?
Yes, which is why I sleep in my car.

By the way... "I like are rome" -- did you share a room w/siblings? Was it you and 2 siblings in individual beds? I wondered about that all through the rest of the pictures... Yes, I need help.

Nope, that was my classroom. You can't see the teacher and the other kids. They're hiding.

I'm guessing this just because of your spelling, but did you grow up in the South? Your phonetical spelling looks like everyone in my town sounds. ;)
LOL! Nope. I grew up in Chicagoland.

Did your "Car Hops" [at Sonic] wear skates??
The ones I saw were wearing skates. I think that would be a fun job to have in the summer. Notsomuch when it's 20 below and the snow's up to your waist. Of course, I doubt there will be too many people willing to pull up and eat in their car when the weather's that bad.

We don't have a Sonic here. I keep seeing these commercials on tv and people talk abott it all the time.
I know! We've been tormented by commercials for a long time. I asked a Sonic employee about that and he said it was cheaper to do a nationwide campaign instead of targeting specific areas.

Where is that new Sonic? I live in Chicago, near Evanston and haven't had Sonic for a LONG time!
Aurora. But there are some scheduled to open in Bartlett, Algonquin, Lockport, and Country Club Hills.

lol- that is crazy! I can't believe people get that excited about Sonic! Don't get me wrong, I love them too- hit up happy hour every time my kids are awake during that time frame ;) I just don't have the patience to wait that long for food.Wow, people out there must really love Sonic.
I think it's just the novelty of it. This is the first one in Chicagoland, despite the fact that we've been seeing the commercials for it for years.

And you? Not a good Christian? Oh, come on. You can only turn the other cheek so many times.
I guess I had already turned my cheek 490 times. Get it? Hee hee. 7 times 70. 490? Get it? I just crack myself up. (Yes, I know that's not really what that scripture means.)

You really should move here. Cheaper houses, great paying jobs, Mimi, No snow, and of course a Sonic on every street corner. ;o)
No snow, Sonic's on every corner and Mimi? Sold! When I'm rich and famous, I'm moving to Texas. ;)

I was wondering did you ever deal with that in any of your pregnancies? Not just your average morning sickness, but hyperemesis.
I got the typical morning sickness with every pregnancy, but nothing too bad. If I had, I'm quite certain I'd only have one child. Of course, I say that about Brooklyn all the time - if she'd been first, she'd be an only child!

Maybe if they opened a White Castle in Oklahoma, but not a Sonic. LOL.
White Castle? Blech. There's a reason they call 'em "sliders" you know.

What is this *Subscribe in a reader* it is located on the right side of the blog.
I don't have the slightest flipping clue. It's something computery that I don't understand at all. I'm sure one of my readers who isn't technologically stupid, can explain it though.

And how did you sit in the car [in line at Sonic's] without anyone having to go potty?
Funny you should ask this. Actually, Clay did have to go potty. We thought about letting him go to the back of the van to pee into the little cup the slushie sample had come in. Then we realized the cup was probably much too small and that was probably not the best idea. So, Austin grabbed one of Brooklyn's diapers and he and Clay went to the back of the van where he held the diaper up and Clay peed in it. Smart thinking, huh? I mean, it's not like there was a Walmart RIGHT THERE! It's not like I could've sent Austin or Savannah to just take him to Walmart to use the bathroom. I'm such a dork.


Amanda said...

ROFLMAO! I love the story of peeing into the diaper! I have a son with a small for his age bladder, and car trips can be a nightmare. Next time I'm throwing one of the baby's diapers at him when we're 40 miles from the nearest sign of civilization and he announces he has to pee - NOW. If nothing More, I just want to see the look on his face. I suppose I should make sure hubby is driving for that.

Anonymous said...

A diaper!? I never would have thought of that!! Hahahaha! You are sooo clever!

my3boys said...

I've used that diaper-in-the-back-of-the-van trick MANY times! My boys are all way past potty trained, but I keep a couple of diapers in the van just in case!

Miss Brenda said...

In reference to your comment about Brooklyn being an only child... My sister calls that "Last Child Syndrome". She says "They're not 'like that' because they're the last child, they're the last child because they're 'like that'!

limetulips said...

reader video:

Grace said...

"Subscribe in a reader" allows you to get new updates to the blog when they're posted, rather than having to come back to the site to check if there's anything new. So handy! Especially if you read a lot of blogs. You just subscribe to them all, and then you read them all in one place instead of having to go to a bunch of websites. I use Google Reader for my feeds.

Jake said...

yeah, the reader thing is very simple. just go to, which in my opinion is the easiest to use. Then you just click on that "subscribe in a reader" link, copy the url that it takes you to, and paste it to the add subscription thingy in google reader. that way, when Dawn posts, you will be notified in less than 10 minutes, so you don't have to go to Dawn's blog everynight and refresh the page in anticipation of the next post. :)

Jake said...

oh. two more things Dawn.

1. I read your blog from a reader, and I thought I said that you had some web technical team for your blog when your design went all wacko with the photobucket bandwith thingamajigger. So if you do have a team (I hope you do or else I'm going crazy), could you ask them to add a comment link at the end of the posts in feeds?

2. What is "the auction" that you are talking about? (6th Q&A)

Michelle said...

Wow. I'm hearing it all about peeing in odd places lately. Between the diaper and the blanket that another blogger's parents kept in the car for them to use (but apparently never DID use)... this is highly entertaining. I'd be too frightened to try with my wee ones though!

So after your experience of actually getting to taste Sonic, will you be going back? You talked about the experience but not about what you ate or how you liked it.

Higgins Family said...

Pee in a diaper! Brilliant! MUCH easier than taking a trip into Walmart.

And thank you for answering my "safety in blogging" question. I figured it would be a hot topic. I read the link you included, really appreciate you adding that. One of your readers commented in my blog that the link to my blog is on my comment here. But I really don't have a problem with strangers using that link, I just want to lower the potential for problems. I guess it really is a personal choice. Thanks so much.

Shelly S., Nebraska said...

Hi Dawan,
I've been busy lately and have missed reading your blog for over a week...and just spent 45 minutes getting caught up. I always kick myself when I get behind, because after reading your blog I feel so validated!! Thanks Dawn, for your awesome reality and honesty!!

1. I had a similar incident to your hair salon incident, in the checkout lane of WallyWorld last week. I, in my own deluded state, thought that taking all 6 of my kids (10 & under) to the store 2 days before school started was actually an GOOD idea. Hah! After 2 hours, $240, and 48 dirty looks from shoppers who clearly believed me to be an unfit mother, I left exhausted. I'm glad to know I am not the only one who garners appaluse when her children leave a public place!!

2. Tell your readers who are looking for alternatives to meds for treating ADHD and can't imagine being the special diet superhero that you are, to try Reliv. ( They have an awesome supplement for children. Totally worth researching!

3. Here is a question for your next SSO: have you ever tallied up the months--I mean YEARS--of your life that you have spent either breastfeedig or pregnant (or maybe even both at the same time!)? To get my brood, I have spent 44.5 months pregnant and 43 months breastfeeding. That is a total of 7.3 years that my body belonged to someone else! How about you??

Rick said...

Peeing in the baby's diaper? Why, what kind of mother would think of something like that?

Mrs. Meehan,... you're no dork! You're a genius!!!

Hey, I've been in a few Wal-Mart bathrooms. Believe me you spared Clay a good chance of catching something you and he didn't want - if you know what I mean.

Man 'o man, I've been on a number of trips where an extra set of disposables would have come in mighty handy.

I've been of a few trips where yours truly was dying for such an idea.

In fact... I'm going out right now and pick up a box of Depends for my next long distance jaunt, or the next time I choose to wait in line for an hour at Sonic. (Which is not so genius.)

P.S. Dawn, I hope that these little comments by me put a little joy into your blogging experience, because that's always my intent.

Anonymous said...

I saw a Wii Fit in the Toys R Us in Vernon Hills this past Friday. Actually, I didn't actually see the Wii Fit but a sign on the front door said "We have Wii Fit in stock". You have done well keeping the town that you live in private, so I'm not sure if this is near your house. I would be happy to pick it up for you and then meet you somewhere for lunch (I'm a lurking fan, not a stalker). I definitley call the Toys R Us first to see if they really do/still have them in stock.

-Donna W.

chantal said...

My daugher is ADHD and we did therapy for 4 years. For us, a regular routine with no surprises works best. If we need to break our routine I always give her advance notice. I have her teachers sit her at the front of the class. At the beginning of each school year (especially if the teacher is new to the school) I write a little "cheat sheet" for the teacher for different situations.
Sonic is the best.
I have done the pee in diaper thing-for myself!! please say other moms have too!!
School started for us today and I am rejoicing because the house is quiet and I can actually sit uniterrupted and post comments on all the blogs I love.

Renee said...

I'm sure someone else will answer this for you, but I'm replying to the person who asked about the "Subscribe to a Reader" link.

You can use a reader to look at your favorite sites without having to check there every day for new information. The new posts automatically update to the reader so you don't have to check a gajillion sites. Think of it as a Walmart as opposed to having to go to a specialty store for everything you buy. One-stop web browsing!

I personally love Google Reader. You need a google account to get it (what? are you saying you don't have a google account? Where have you been!) Anyway, so if you don't have a google account, sign up for one ( It's easy, free, and once you get used to Google Email, you'll probably switch to it. You'll never email the same.

But once you have a google account. Click the "Subscribe to Reader" link and it will ask you which reader you would like to subscribe to. Make sure you choose google reader. Once you have subscribed, you can choose Reader from the google email page or go to the link for goole reader directly. Once you go to the reader, you will see all of Dawn's posts (including photos) in all of their glory. If you want to go go the original post, just click on the title of the post.

I love that google products are so interactive! (Use Picasa photos too. It's from Google and awesomeness as well). Sorry for seemingly endorsement post but I like to help people out with things that make their lives easier.

Hope this post helps your readers Dawn, and you too!

SMC said...

I love how "I can eat a cookie" on the previous post is one of the few things that was spelled correctly. It's nice to know you have always had your priorities straight! :o) Love your posts!

Deirdrea said...

I live in a house full of ADD. My husband and both daughters both have it and are ALL medicated for it. That being said, I've never really done a lot of research on it or anything. My husband recently got a book called "ADD and Romance" which has been very eye opening about how and why our relationship does and doesn't work and things that we can work on etc. My question is though, because there are 23459827342098234 books about ADD out there, do you know of some good and helpful books to look for on raising ADD children? I really want to work on how I discipline my children because I know that my current methods are not working.

Kate said...

A couple years ago we had to evacuate for hurricane rita ( ok, so it turns out we didn't "have to" so much as everyone freaked out and left ) and we wound up sitting in the car forever. we took 26 hours to drive what is normally a 3 hour drive. my daughter was still in diapers so i wasn't worried. the other 5 guys traveling in our caravan adopted the " the world is my urinal" philosophy and were constantly wandering out into the woods to relieve themselves. Me, not so much. i didn't drink a drop of fluid and my plan was to pee in a diaper. The guys all insisted it couldn't be done. luckily, i never had to prove them wrong.
I laughed at your story because I'm from Texas and so, yes, we do have sonic on every corner and I stock the freezer with 2 bags of sonic ice a week ( that takes care of the ice needs for the 4 of us and my ice maker sits all lonely and dejected at it's apparent failure to provide suitable ice ). I also laughed because if that scenario had gone down in the south, the bushes would have been lined with guys "taking care of business". Leave it to clever (and oh, so proper ) midwestern boys to pee in a diaper :)

Anonymous said...

Dawn, you're awesome. Don't believe the nutcases who haven't walked in your shoes. I only have two little aliens of my own and I can tell you make me look like a slacker in every way. :) Thanks for the laughs, thanks for the reality, thanks for everything.

-a Fan

Fearless Mom said...

Hi, you seem to have quite a few questions from readers about ADHD. I was just wondering if you've ever tried neurofeedback treatment for it.

becky said...

Hey Dawn,
Love the diaper trick. I'll have to keep that in mind for later.
Speaking of diapers... were any of your kids potty trained before the next one came along or have you been changing diapers (sometimes on multiple children probably) for 14 years straight?
Also, do you ever wish you used cloth diapers for the budget and environment's sake?

Brenda said...

My cookbook just arrived today. I can't wait to go through it and give some of them a try. Thanks!

Jenny said...

Here is a great post that answers the question about what it means to "subscribe to a reader"! If you read more than a couple of blogs, you should totally read it. I will never go back to reading blogs w/o a is SO much faster and easier:)

Tammy said...

Hi Dawn,

I laughed about peeing in the diaper. It reminded me of a story about my aunt. She refused to go out to the outhouse at my great grandparents' farm in Northern Wisconsin at night in November (can you even imagine!) So SHE peed in diaper! LOL

And I agree with the lady who recommended Reliv. Many people with ADD/ADHD kids have found great success with it.

Stephanie said...

Bwahahaha! That is hilarious that he used a diaper in the back of the van! Was he honored to do it? I know my 9 year old would have been, and then the 7 year old and 4 year old would tell me they needed to go too so they could pee in a diaper in the back of my van! LOL

mom2adhd said...

Hi there, just a shout out to you about the hair salon fiasco- I read what that nasty poster said and she was wrong- you obviously disciplined your kids by taking them out of there and no suckers! Believe me, I know how you feel-I've had to drag my adhd son out of places mid-meltdown, when it would have been much "easier" to just give in. Good for you!

Tina in Ohio said...

Oh my gosh, I'd be so afraid of the kids starting school the next week and using that as their "what I did this summer" story to share with the class.
Did you warn the kids that WHAT HAPPENS IN THE VAN, STAYS IN THE VAN?!?

Kathi D said...

A friend with two small boys was stuck in a massive traffic jam one October long ago. There were two plastic pumpkin "Halloween baskets" in the car. Mmmmmmm hmmmmmmmm.

Kathi D said...

And about the diaper. They probably learned it from the lady astronaut who drove from Houston to Florida nonstop to kill The Other Woman and wore a diaper so she wouldn't have to stop to pee.

She was smart! An astronaut! See how smart your kids are?

Anonymous said...

I've tried the diaper trick, but since I didn't want to get wet, (and it was a baby diaper, not Depends, so I couldn't have put it on anyway) I held it out and aimed into it, like it sounds like your boys did. Maybe it's different for you ladies, but the inside layer that "locks moisture away from baby's skin" caused some um, splashes. Any liquid that soaked through that layer was absorbed by the miracle absorbing layer, but liquid did tend to pool inside the diaper while it was waiting to soak through. There, I said it. Any pointers on preventing splashing and pooling?

(Hiding face in embarrassment.)

Shelly S. said...

I am the gal who mentioned Reliv. If anyone is curious about it for ADHD, I can get questions answered. I know a bunch of distributors. E-mail me at

Oh, I also have to add that pop bottles work GREAT for potty emergencies for little boys. Just don't use a Mountain Dew bottle--it looks too much like the Dew!! Eeewwww! :)

Anonymous said...


My sister and bil requested the Wii Fit for their shared birthday and I went to Best Buy the day before and picked one up no problem. You may find one easily if you call around to a couple of places!! It was actually much more inexpensive than I thought it was going to be and soooooo much fun!!

Lindsey said...

I have taken to reading your blog once a week now instead of daily because of my crazy life with 4 kids and sports back up in full swing. I just wanted to say-good for you and your comment back to nasty person. it is so ridiculous that people think they have the right to judge other moms. i am proud of you. keep up the good work! and try not to let it get you down. some people are just nasty...

Anonymous said...

Hi Dawn

I was wondering if you have heard about using biofeedback to teach people with ADHD to "wake up" their brain so they can improve their ablity to attend. My son (11 yr) was diagnosed when he was 6. We had him do the biofeedback sessions, and he is currently doing well in school and is not being medicated. Here is the link to his ADHD doctor's site where there is more info on biofeedback, nutrition and medications(if you are interested) .

I am SO glad I came across your blog. It gives me a much needed chuckle everytime I read it. I'm looking forward to your book (I'm a big Guide Post fan too).

Judy K

Anonymous said...

Hi Dawn, My van keeps a empty Maxwell house coffee can in it just in case someone has to pee. It has a handle and a lid on it. Wow we are all Dorks! Kristine in Michigan.

Anonymous said...

Great quick thinking with the diaper! May I suggest a potty seat to stay in the car (if there's room). It has come in quite handy for my 4 year old son! At the soccer field where they only have porta-potties (sp?) that he refuses to use, it's been great. I also keep baby wipes and plastic grocery bags in the car for easy cleanup. Won't work for your older kids, but when the little ones have a "pee emergency", it'll come in handy!

Mandy said...

Sonics on every corner here in Utah.

Heather said...

Fisher price makes a great porta potty for just that reason. It uses the really small size trash bag and nursing pads to catch everything. i love it.

RedneckMomma said...

Hey Dawn, I am a day late and a dollar short as usual. I have had no computer access for a few days, so I just caught up with you, and I have to comment on the "lash out" you made. WAY TO GO! Only a christian, and and good one, could have lashed back the way you did. We know the right thing to do and the right way to treat people, and obviously anonymous has no clue. How else is that person going to know the effects of what they do and say unless someone tells them?

Believe me, I have lost my religion all over people before, and, not that I felt self-righteous or anything, but I know I was, if only a little, justified. Maybe I had to pray a little and ask forgiveness for a foul mouth or a bad thought afterward, but I know I had every right to express my opinion and my feelings as much as the other person involved had the right to do or say whatever it was to me.

So, in short, LOVE YA! You're the best.

Linney Shvede said...

ok, I type ROFLMFAO all the time when I'm just chuckling and this time I could type it and mean every letter...that was hysterical...

Colleen said...

I recommend "ADHD and Me: What I Learned from Lighting Fires at the Dinner Table" by Blake E. S. Taylor for all parents of ADHD children, and let your kids read it as soon as they are able. I could write pages and pages about how this helped us understand what was really going on from our son's point of view, and helped my son see how to turn 'symptoms' into 'talents others don't have'. Read this book!

Gretchen said...

You need to get these. Seriously. I bought some years ago and they have come in SO HANDY. And yes, my girls have used them and so has my son. They fit in the glove box.

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