Helping Your ADHD Child Succeed

This post may contain affiliate links. Please view our affiliate policy and our terms and conditions here. I am not a mental health professional, all the opinions in this post are my own and reflect what has worked for me. None is of this is given as medical or professional advice. Please seek professional advice in the matters of mental/physical health should you or a loved one need it.

I think most parents would agree they want their children to be successful, whatever that may look like to each of us. However raising a person with ADHD comes with it’s own set of challenges on top of those that are already standard struggles for parents. There’s the disorganization, difficulty with time management, distractibility, defiance, and of course emotions getting “too big” and causing a meltdown.

These are some key points we utilize in our household to help manage some of those symptoms.

Make charts for daily tasks

This is probably my most favorite go to. This is what got me off my son’s back and gave us both some room for peace. He likes that I’m not reminding him to get his clothes on because it’s been 15 minutes and he’s still just dinking around on the floor with his jammies half off; I like that all I have to say is “Go do your list” and he does! Quite successfully and quickly no less. We keep on him about time management and got him a watch and regularly use kitchen timers as needed to help him understand what 5 minutes actually feels like. He also knows that he doesn’t get to move onto anything else more fun until his list is done and he will be redirected back to the list as many times as it takes. Me being able to say 4 words helps with not engaging him too much because that just becomes fuel for his defiance. Lists have done a lot for my household. He actually has 3 lists; one for morning, one after school, and one evening. They each have there own set of things and I made them in order to help him learn how to manage that later in life (you don’t get your shoes and jacket on until you’ve gotten dressed sorta thing) as I see him struggle with it currently. You can check out what all are on those lists here!

Plan ahead and do ahead

This ties into the list . Mornings are rough for everybody not just our family, but if he/we don’t do stuff the night before we will NOT make it out of the house on time. Part of my son’s list entails him to get stuff done ahead of time for the next day; i.e. laying his clothes out, making his lunch, prepping his backpack, planning for anything he needs to bring to school, ect. This also sets the tone for the evening and helps wind him down prior to bedtime. We’ve essentially created a very productive routine that tells his body “Hey it’s time to chill, bedtime is soon”.

Always allow an extra 15 minutes, better early everyday than late

I’m a type-A personality so not only do I live for organization, I feel my body tearing itself apart if I am late anywhere. Now because my darling child will occasionally have meltdowns in the morning while all the goings on are happening, I have opted to get him up a wee bit earlier so that it is now on him and less on me. By that I mean if we have extra time (because he didn’t loose his $#*!) then he can spend a little bit of time watching TV or playing with LEGOS or pillow fighting his younger brother. This helps ease my mind and helps take the stress off both of us and it’s literally only 15 minutes! This can also be applied to other functions. Kid hates going to the doctor? Just give yourself that 15 minute grace period. So what if you have to wait in the car or sit on the bench outside calmly while they scream. Let ’em. It doesn’t bother you until you allow it to.

Find a compromise for a task that is a struggle

My son hates making his bed. Like cries and tells me “You’re the worst mom ever” when I ask him to do this. And hey, I get it! He doesn’t like to struggle or feel unaccomplished and fitted sheets are the perfect storm for that, even as an adult (I haven’t told him yet that they don’t go away ). So we compromise. I help him with his bed and he helps me with my bed, or some other chore I’d like his assistance on. It has us working together as a team to achieve a goal, he gets the practice and gains some confidence and then he gets introduced to another chore and the theory “I’ll scratch your back, you scratch mine”. You meet him in the middle and he will kinda be forced to do the same if he wants the help. But skills still have to be used! No whining or being rude or I walk out and remind him when he’s ready he can come get me. And I wait until he is actually ready-not that half sneaky smile pouty face ready. Good ole’ manipulation attempts *sigh*.

Schedule down time and self reflection time

This one is something we still are working on. He finally seems eager to do this and gets excited about it on his list. I got him a gratitude journal awhile back and so far he really enjoys it. This one is geared for younger kiddos but they certainly have lots to choose from for all ages. I liked this one because it was simple, straightforward, and still had room for drawing about your day. Meditation is slooooowly coming along. I really love meditation myself but he doesn’t like to be still for so long (hmmm 6 year old with ADHD, can’t imagine why). However he DOES enjoy progressive relaxation in book form at bedtime. This is the book we use here. He feels like he’s just getting a story read to him and he gets to move his muscles a bit but it’s actually helping him to gain self awareness and control over his body. Plus its extremely calming. If you’ve never tried it, I highly recommend doing so. It’s beneficial for all ages.

Daily outside time, regardless of weather

This is huge for people with mental health conditions and frankly for ALL people. We need nature. I notice a night and day difference in my kid if he hasn’t been able to play outside. It’s centering for him, as it is for me. Even if he’s not “doing” anything in particular, just being in the fresh air and hearing the birds and feeling the wind helps his brain have multiple things to do with itself and thus calms him. I also feel it’s important to get your kids used to all types of weather. I believe it helps them become more resilient, because some days are crumby and some days are shiny but all days exist and you can make them into better days if you choose to.

“One task at a time”

This one comes straight out of his therapists mouth. And it seems so simple but sometimes I think we all need that reminder. When he’s trying to eat a snack and play on his tablet and talk to grandma on the phone or watch his favorite show, I remind him “One thing at a time, you need to pick one”. This also helps him learn prioritizing, which is the most important or what do I actually want to do right now. It helps him slow down and think in a world that gets so caught up with do, do, do!

Weekly clean outs for room, locker, backpack

I am ashamed to say I let this one drop recently. I put it on his list and thought he was doing it completely! Until I happened to put something in his backpack for his teacher and found pencil shavings, pencils, an opened sharpener, and his empty pencil box in there….So I helped him clean it out, no biggy. Until I tried to put the pencil box in the front pocket and found….FOOD! Old food from at least 2 weeks prior . There was a SB&J (S is for sunbutter) with the butter smeared around the inside of the pocket, and carrots that luckily weren’t growing a biology experiment, and stale pretzels. Thank goodness there wasn’t a funky smell yet! I had him clean out that particular pocket solo. Now I check on a daily that this task gets done so there’s no surprises. We also go through his room with him roughly once a week. I don’t usually put my foot down in his room as long as stuff is where it belongs but he likes to stash stuff under his bed. Including trash…and food. We’re working on it…

Responsibility in the household living duties

I may refer to chores as such on here since that’s what most people know them as but at home I prefer to use the term “living duties”. Why? Well because everyone who lives has duties unto themselves and the other members of their household. You like to eat? You learn how to cook and wash dishes. You like to be clean? You learn how to wash yourself properly and do laundry. Plus members of the family might throw a fuss if your personal fragrance is emanating from you at 3 feet away. I am a firm believer and supporter that my kids will one day leave the house and not come home for mama to wash their clothes. And I’ll be damned if my boys think it will become their partners responsibility. No. It’s on them, they need to know how to take care of themselves. And myself and my husband will be the ones to teach them. Make no mistake these baby birds don’t have instinct, they need skills before they can fly. That’s what I’m here for. I intend for my kids to know how to cook, clean, launder, sew, iron, fix, repair, wash, dry, screw, and unscrew just about everything for themselves by the time they are ready to leave my nest. It’s my responsibility as their parent to provide them the tools and skills they need to succeed and the knowledge of where to find the information if they don’t know it.

What are some things that work for your child to be successful?

Top Products For Healthy Curly Hair

This post may contain affiliate links. Please view our affiliate policy and terms and conditions here. I am not a medical skin care/esthetic professional. All of the opinions in this post are my own and reflect what has worked or not worked for me. None of this is given as medical or professional advice. Please use common sense and follow all safety and manufacture instructions when using any products in your own home. Use these at your own risk. Method-To-Madness does not assume any liability for injuries or damages caused by products or methods listed on our site nor are we responsible for any medical costs associated with injuries or damages. Please seek medical or professional advice for personal issues should you or a loved one need it.

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…….I’m so jealous of that picture…don’t mind me, Imma just sit here in my envious dreamin’ vibes…

Just kidding let’s get into it! So after perming my hair I had to COMPLETELY change up my hair routine. I had never really used a ton of products and certainly not for daily styling. But now I have to actually DO my hair, you know like a normal person .

That being said it was a bit of a learning process of what worked and what didn’t and everything in between. I’ve come to understand this is pretty much true for most curly girls, but we can all benefit from sharing knowledge and things that worked for each of us.

So without further ado I give you my current product list!

Biolage RAW Nourish Shampoo

I started using this pre curl to prep for perming and I immediately noticed I had smoother locks after my first use. It’s pH correct for hair (slightly acidic) and 95% naturally based. It also nearly eliminated my danduff, which was becoming a problem at the time for me. They have it in a small and larger bottle, though the large is the better deal.

Joico Moisture Recovery Treatment

This is another one that’s pH correct. I love how much healthier my hair feels after using this. It is a treatment so I use it about once a week and more if my hair is feeling grumpy from the weather. Also I just saw they have a double pack that’s a better deal than the single bottle.

Eva NYC Therapy Session Hair Mask

This was recommended to me by a gal at Sally’s and I like to mix this with the Joico and do a double mask all at once! I’ve noticed it really adds to the total smoothness of my hair, which sometimes gets wild when I throw it up all the time from the heat of summer. This makes a big difference in the functionality of my hair.

dpHUE Apple Cider Vinegar Leave-In

This is probably my most fav item on this list. (It’s a tie between this and the refresher.) This leave-in’s not only amazing for all hair types but it’s vegan, free from parabens, phthalates, gluten, silicone, and sulfates, and it’s made in the USA. It also is anti-frizz and, (my personal fav) gives UV protection. I also really like the brand in general; they have wonderful products and I love their eco-friendly mission.

Aussie Spray Gel

The gel department was by far the most difficult to navigate. After a bunch of trial and error I found that using spray gel worked best for me. I’m able to achieve a textured but not overly styled look and it lasts for days when I use my sleeping cap and refresher spray .

Carol’s Daughter Hair Refresher Spray

If you’ve got curls and you’re not using a refresher spray, hunty…it’s time to level up. This stuff is a game changer. Refreshers are amazing to begin with, but coming from the brand Carol’s Daughter: it’s in a class of it’s own. A few good spritz and some scrunching and you look like you just spent hours getting your hair as perfect as it now is.

There you have it my lovelies! What’s your fav products? Let me know in the comments!

I Permed My Colored Hair….And It Didn’t Melt!

This post may contain affiliate links. Please view our affiliate policy and terms and conditions here. I am not a medical skin care/esthetic professional. All of the opinions in this post are my own and reflect what has worked or not worked for me. None of this is given as medical or professional advice. Please use common sense and follow all safety and manufacture instructions when using any products in your own home. Use these at your own risk. Method-To-Madness does not assume any liability for injuries or damages caused by products or methods listed on our site nor are we responsible for any medical costs associated with injuries or damages. Please seek medical or professional advice for personal issues should you or a loved one need it.

Here’s the immediate before and after shots! I just love the texture of it now so much!

I’ve always had straight hair, like….painfully pin straight hair. And of course, being human, I’ve always wanted curly hair! My only issue was that since high school I’d been coloring (note that I’m the one doing the color, not the salon) it at least a few times a year, and had always been told by well meaning (and probably accurate for my hair at the time) hair dressers that I couldn’t color AND perm my hair. I was told it would melt.

Well after having melted it myself (#truestory) and growing it back out, plus the pandemic helping me keep my no color policy, I managed to have healthy hair that could tolerate a perm. Now let me clarify: I had year old color on my length and my ends had been processed twice (both times with dark color) and I always baby my hair. You can see some of the products I use here. This worked for me, but I am not necessarily recommending you go out and do it! I found a great stylist who does perms on a regular and has been doing hair for close to 20 years. I had a consult before and I recorded the last 2 years of history for my hair because yes I’m that obsessed after ruining it myself!

During the process, rocking that mask and rollers look

Now my hair didn’t come out completely unscathed. I had to take some inches off that were pretty fried but we waited a few weeks to let my hair settle into its new style and then trimmed it up. Also there were a few places were my hair actually DID melt off. I didn’t notice it until they started to grow back. They were at sections where there was a part and only a couple places. Not sure why but I’ll be letting my stylist know when I go back for a touch up.

Also I gotta say, it’s very different to style curly hair as compared to straight. I never did anything with my straight hair, no styling products unless for special occasions. But with curly I HAVE to do something with it or it just looks kinda unkempt. Here’s my post on the products I’m proudly using.

This last shot is of my hair 3 months later. The curls are still very intact but have softened a bit, plus I know how to style them now! Overall I love my permed hair and I can’t see me not keeping it. It’s more work but I love how I look and I feel that these curls fit my personality.

Any crazy hair adventures you’re thinking of trying? Let me know in the comments!

Homemade Halloween Party

This post may contain affiliate links. Please view our affiliate policy and terms and conditions here. Please use common sense and follow all safety and manufacture instructions when using any crafting equipment in your own home. Use these at your own risk, Method-To-Madness does not assume any liability for injuries or damages caused by attempting the DIY crafts listed on our site nor are we responsible for any medical costs associated with injuries.

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I love fall. Not only is it my favorite season, birther of my favorite flavor (yes it’s pumpkin, yes I’m a simple beech), and bringer of ALL the cute fall clothes, it’s also the season of my favorite holiday! HALLWEEN

I’ve loved Halloween for as long as I can remember: the costumes, the mystical and magical night, the lore, the trick-or-treating, and the spookiness of it all just hit home for me. So when Covid-19 changed our usual plans with the kids for 2020, I figured it was the perfect time to stitch it up and try out some recipes and crafts I’d been wanting to give a go.

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Growing up I used to have Halloween parties every so often, but it had been a REALLY long time sine my last one. Like I was in junior high…..and I graduated high school in 2010 . Needless to say, I was overdue for some stylish Halloween themed fun!

Below are the links to the recipes I used and a pic of how it all turned out! (The shrunken heads are in the pumpkin bowl). The kids really loved helping and my husband was impressed with my mad spooky skills. Even if it wasn’t enjoyed by all our loved ones, it was a really fun experience. 12/10 would totally do again!

Poisoned Candy Apples by Wanna Bite

Candy Corn Parfaits by Suburbia Unwrapped

Pumpkin Deviled Eggs by myrecipes

Mummy Hot Dogs by Homemade Interest

Shrunken Head Apples for Cider by Lasso The Moon

Bat Tortilla Chips by Sainsbury’s

Spider Web Bean Dip by cook2eatwell

Jack-o-lantern Puff Bags and Fruit Cups by Alpha Mom

I had a lot of fun experimenting and putting this together. Everything was fairly simple and easy to accomplish. Can’t wait until next year to do some more!

6 (More!) Sustainable Items For Daily Life

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This post may contain affiliate links. Please view our affiliate policy and terms and conditions here. I am not a medical skin care/esthetic professional. All of the opinions in this post are my own and reflect what has worked or not worked for me. None of this is given as medical or professional advice. Please use common sense and follow all safety and manufacture instructions when using any products in your own home. Use these at your own risk. Method-To-Madness does not assume any liability for injuries or damages caused by products or methods listed on our site nor are we responsible for any medical costs associated with injuries or damages. Please seek medical or professional advice for personal issues should you or a loved one need it.

In my previous post I went over a handful of items I use regularly that help make a greener ecofriendly impact. But immediately after I published it, I found myself thinking of all the other items we use in our house that just didn’t make that list!

So I made a new list! Here are 6 MORE things you can swap to have a positive effect for our planet!

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Wooden utensils

There’s a lot to be said about the wealth that can be found in wood. It’s sustainable, biodegradable, and when cared for properly, can outlast many of today’s modern products. You can go cheap or expensive depending on your budget and desires. Even the expensive ones aren’t that pricey when you consider the investment and the quality of product you’re receiving.

Lotion Bars

We all know that most lotion comes in plastic bottles with plastic pumps. Why not cut those out of the equation all together and use a lotion bar instead! I like this set from Botanical Bars, 3 fragrances and under $20; that’s a deal that’s hard to beat. These melt with the heat of your body and are great at locking in moisture or replenishing the skin when you are in need of some hydration. You can also make these yourself and it’s surprisingly simple! Check it out here.

Photo by Ion Ceban @ionelceban on Pexels.com

Beeswax Wraps

This tends to be a great first switch item because it is so versatile. Use them to cover bowls, use them to wrap fruits, use them as little boxes when folded right, and as placemats for your lunch. Most packs come with a few sizes or you can also make your own like I did using this bar and some cotton fabric! It’s not difficult and is certainly cheaper, plus you can pick your own patterns for the fabric. One thing to note, you WILL have to reapply the wax mixture and process in the oven every so often to maintain stickiness, regardless if you DIY or buy premade. I like this set because it comes with the beeswax to retreat and a produce bag!

Reusable Q-tip

We finally made the switch with the rather popular LastSwab. I purchased one for each member of our household, in the regular swab, and one beauty swab on the off chance that we’ll need it some day. So far the boys like them, though these certainly feel different from a cotton swab. The company also makes tissues and face rounds that are reusable, plus some kits for carrying or getting started.

Photo by Katerina Holmes on Pexels.com

Bento Box

When my 7 year old started going to a public charter after us attempting homeschool, I invested in a bento box for his lunches. I love that they are reusable and usually dishwasher safe. Plus the layout helps to keep his food from getting smushed in bags. I really love this one because it comes with literally everything you could need for lunch and some fun picks to brighten your kiddos (or your own) meal!

Flour Sack Towels

I’m just gonna go ahead and through my husband under the bus (sorry not sorry babe ). He loves paper towels and by that I mean the man can go through a whole roll in literally 3 days! I don’t even know how he does it. So when we had our 2nd kiddo I decided we were not going to be burning through paper towels any more and purchased some flour sack towels. They are super cheap, pretty soft, and we plan on tie dying them once we aren’t using them for sticky fingers and faces. Gotta do that upcycling baby!

There’s always amazing stuff out there to start making simple switches for a greener lifestyle. I’m sure I will do another post related to this topic ( I was seeing all the other items I didn’t go over in my house screaming “pick me, pick me!”). Until then: love yourself, be kind, and make better choices!

The 6 Sustainable Items I Use Everyday

This post may contain affiliate links. Please view our affiliate policy and terms and conditions here. I am not a medical skin care/esthetic professional. All of the opinions in this post are my own and reflect what has worked or not worked for me. None of this is given as medical or professional advice. Please use common sense and follow all safety and manufacture instructions when using any products in your own home. Use these at your own risk. Method-To-Madness does not assume any liability for injuries or damages caused by products or methods listed on our site nor are we responsible for any medical costs associated with injuries or damages. Please seek medical or professional advice for personal issues should you or a loved one need it.

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Becoming eco friendly isn’t something that just happens overnight. You can’t expect success in these life long changes if you try to do a full-house overhaul in a day. It pays off to plan and start small with everyday items; those can make a huge impact for the environment.

It’s also worth noting that these changes should be viewed as investments; not only within yourself and your health, but also with our Earth and the environment.

I’ve compiled a list of 6 items that I use on the daily to make a greener impact. I hope you’ll check these out and that it may inspire you to make other changes in your daily life to help our planet.

Metal Water Bottle

There’s a ton of metal water bottles out in the market today but I tend to be pretty picky when it comes to something so important. I like my water cool and clean, so metal was a no brainer for me. I don’t want plastic leaching into something so vital as my H2O! I also knew I needed an extra large sized bottle; that’s just the only way I’ll drink all my water for the day. I stumbled on to Iron Flask and simply fell in love . The bright variety of colors, the various handles to switch out and the 2 straws in case one gets trashed, so so many sizes and styles-what’s not to love! I personally use this one with the goal to fill it up twice and finish it off by bedtime. They do have a gallon sized one for those of us who have a hard time remembering to fill our bottles too.

Reusable Razor

I’m not gonna lie, I’m a lil’ bit extra. So when I spotted this gorgeous razor I had to snag it. (Plus I’m a sucker for anything that’s rose gold #heretakemymoney). The reviews on these Viking razors really sold me too, so I gave it go myself. Man….you know those moments where you question what you’ve been doing your whole life? Using this razor was one of those. The shave is so smooth and there’s no razor burn and the blades are recyclable , and it’s pretty to boot! They have a whole line with different handle styles and colors but really any one you get is gonna be worth it!

Mesh Produce Bags

Shopping in bulk can be one of the biggest impacts on creating less packaging. However if you’re using the plastic bags in the store and throwing them away once you’re home, it sort of defeats the whole purpose. Enter MESH BAGS! These are great for holding produce and even things from the bulk section like pasta or snacks. (Don’t try putting flour or sugar in them though….the netting isn’t that tight). I tried making my own but they aren’t worth all the hassle honestly. They’re cheap to purchase and way sturdier than the ones I made.

Shampoo and Conditioner Bars

These are probably one of the toughest things out there to find a good replacement that is still eco friendly. And that is for a few reasons. Going green isn’t just about plastics, it’s also about ethics and knowing where these companies are sourcing their materials. This gets into fair wage, fair trade, ethical and sustainable practices, ect. That’s why I like this set from Ethique, you get a variety of samples to find which ones work best for you and they have a strong ethical practice you can trust.

Glass and Bamboo Tupperware

This was a newer purchase for me. We’ve been using the glass and plastic ones but the lids melted or tiny pieces went missing and we ended up throwing the lids out and just using beeswax wraps, foil, or plastic wrap to cover. Then I found these from Greener Chef. I love the product but also the mission behind the company. It’s a smaller scale family run company wanting to make a greener impact!

Bamboo Toothbrush

When I started making the switch this was one of the very first things I swapped. There’s so much plastic in traditional toothbrushes, from the packaging right down to the bristles. The entire thing is plastic! So I recommend these as a greener and fun alternative. The bright colors are a good way to differentiate whos brush is whose if you share a bathroom. They are completely biodegradable so I feel confident using them, knowing I’m making an impact for the better.

These are just a few of the things you can swap out in your daily life to make a huge environmental impact! I hope this inspired you to see where you can make some positive changes in your life!

Parenting a Person With ADHD: Chapter 6

This post may contain affiliate links. Please view our affiliate policy and our terms and conditions here. I am not a mental health professional, all the opinions in this post are my own and reflect what has worked for me. None is of this is given as medical or professional advice. Please seek professional advice in the matters of mental/physical health should you or a loved one need it.

This will be the final post in this series. If you have not already, please read the previous chapters to get an in-depth view of each category. Also feel free to go back and look over the skills, it takes time and practice to hone them.

This post is gonna be short and sweet! The links for the previous articles are above and you can reach out to me or your therapist with questions.

I started this series with the intent to spread some love, understanding, and skills to parents like myself out there who are trying their best. Even though this series is geared towards being a parent of a defiant child, these skills can be applied to many aspects of life and to other kids who you have close connections to.

There are lots of helpful books out there, but I’d like to share the one’s we found to be most useful to us.

  • Mindful Mantras: This is a group of 8 books total (they may have added more since then) and we love them! My son loves to read them out loud himself too. They are simple, encouraging, and have a different defined message clearly implied from the title.
  • Mindful Monkey, Happy Panda: This is one I found to even be helpful for me. It keeps mindfulness simple and explains it in a way everyone can understand.
  • Angry Octopus: This one is extremely helpful to teach kids that they are in control of their bodies and it shows them how to do that through progressive relaxation that is both engaging and relaxing. It also has a fun journaling/coloring book with prompts geared towards getting feelings out and relaxation.

I hope that you gained some insightful tips on this journey with me! Until next time, be well!

Backyard & Garden Make-Over Series: Part 1

This post may contain affiliate links. Please view our affiliate policy and terms and conditions here. Please use common sense and follow all safety and manufacture instructions when using any crafting equipment in your own home. Use these at your own risk, Method-To-Madness does not assume any liability for injuries or damages caused by attempting the DIY crafts listed on our site nor are we responsible for any medical costs associated with injuries.

We’ve lived in our house for coming up on 5 years and for whatever reason I’m just now getting around to re-doing the landscape and putting in some structures for our backyard. I guess I’m the kind of person who has to sit on an idea for a bit before I pursue such a large project. Because once this stuff is in I don’t wanna take it out! I don’t like wasting hours and effort (mine or my husbands) when doing projects, I like being productive and not have to undo something 5 times because I didn’t plan it well enough in the first place.

There was originally black lava rock over this dirt with some very shabby weed barrier beneath it. This is after we cleared those things out.

Anywho, here we are half a decade later with actual plans for a total make-over of our yard! We’ve planted veggies and flowers in the past but mainly just scattered the seeds about and hoped for the best. We got pumpkins, like 5 green beans, a few lettuce leaves….aaaand that was about it! Our blueberries never produced, my herbs just didn’t take off (except for mint, that stuff spreads like wildfire), and the cantalope never got past pollination. Sunflowers and borage did well along the back fence line where it gets full sun, but we have a lot of shade in our back yard, mainly where it’s scaped for an actual garden to be planted. The photo above and below you can see the rich soil and curbing, but all this is totally in shade all day!

You can see these areas were all covered in lava rock originally, which is great for reducing water usage but I was sick of them landing in our grass and wanted something more enjoyable to look at.

We had used some lava rock to make a border around the fence line (because frankly the fence was falling down but our landlord was waiting for the weather to perk up) but that just interfered with mowing. The large wood planks were up against the house in an attempt to keep the dirt and water away from the vents…..it didn’t work as well as the inventor had planned. They were quite rotted in places which you never want near your home.

In my next edition to this series I’ll show the progress we made and the ideas I had for our yard!

This was the first of many steps in our gardening journey. Follow for more!

Parenting a Person With ADHD: Chapter 5-It Takes a Village

This post may contain affiliate links. Please view our affiliate policy and our terms and conditions here. I am not a mental health professional, all the opinions in this post are my own and reflect what has worked for me. None is of this is given as medical or professional advice. Please seek professional advice in the matters of mental/physical health should you or a loved one need it.

The saying “It takes a village to raise a child” means so many things to me. But for the purpose of this article we’ll focus on the direct hands involved in your child’s life. These could be parents, aunts and uncles, cousins, babysitters, grandparents, counselors, teachers, sports leaders, religious leaders, and so so many more. The people who are directly partaking in the development and growth of your child.

In this chapter I’ll be discussing how to include other adults in the changes that you are making for your child’s life structure. If you are new here and haven’t read up on the previous chapters in this series, please do so! The links are provided below for each.

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Integrating other adults in your child’s new plan can seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. You are the parent and you hold a majority of the power when it comes to decisions about your child’s needs.

When we implemented the ticket system we didn’t include the school in it right away. We mastered it at home first, made it a consistent daily part of our lives and then, when it became apparent an additional tool was needed at school to help modify negative behaviors, we brought in tickets to be given to our son after successful parts of the day.

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We broke up the day into 3 separate categories: beginning, at recess, and after recess. He could earn a ticket during each portion as long as he kept safe hands and feet, kept his saliva to himself, and had listening ears. It was hugely successful.

This strategy can be easily started at a daycare or grandparents house or any other facility that you may use for your child care. The tickets must retain their currency though, so don’t allow anyone to get too ticket happy. The child must do the work to earn the reward.

Sometimes you will come across an adult who does not use the system when they are around your child, whether it be difference of opinion or down-right sabotage of the situation, my point is it does happen. You need to be prepared for those times.

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Remember boundaries from the previous chapters? This is one of those times you set your boundaries and you stick to them with this other adult, regardless of who they may be in your life. You are allowed boundaries and deserve respect as a parent (and a person) to decide what works best for you and your child.

If you are working with a professional and making safe, effective changes and someone else comes in with their own idea of what should be going on, don’t hesitate to yeet them out the door (politely but assertively, of course).

This is not only important for yourself, but also for your child to see that when you set a boundary you expect it to be followed and that you produce real consequences when it is not.

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It’s important to remember that if you do come across an adult who doesn’t agree with your parenting technique: be kind, be assertive, and move on. You don’t need to waste energy and focus on this. Most of the adults in your child’s life will likely see the benefit of making certain changes and be totally on board with all that’s required to keep it going.

It’s also worth noting that having these other adults involved with your child is very important for your kiddo. If you are the only one laying down new laws, it can start to feel like a dictatorship to some kids (especially defiant ones). But when there are other grown-ups saying and doing the same things as you, your child starts to see this is just how the world is and they adapt to it.

It can really make all the difference having a supportive team on your side while rearing your kid. And kids benefit from having all that much more love in their lives!

The next chapter will be the last in this series! Stay tuned

DIY Themed Kids Bedroom: Woodland Series-Mountain Wall Painting

This post may contain affiliate links. Please view our affiliate policy and terms and conditions here. Please use common sense and follow all safety and manufacture instructions when using any crafting equipment in your own home. Use these at your own risk, Method-To-Madness does not assume any liability for injuries or damages caused by attempting the DIY crafts listed on our site nor are we responsible for any medical costs associated with injuries.

I love themed rooms, especially when it comes to rooms where kids roam. Bedrooms, playrooms, bathrooms, doctor rooms, dentist rooms, all of it! In fact one of my favorite themed rooms as a child was my dentists’ waiting room. They had raised, touchable creatures on the walls along with elaborate paintings of all imaginable sea creatures and the sky above. It was mesmerizing. So I always knew I wanted to explore themed rooms when I had a home of my own.

Little did I know that I wouldn’t get to explore this idea until my first child was nearly in grade school. Nor did I think my first project would be painting a mountain scenery. But it’s SOOOO much easier than it looks. You’d be surprised what a few coordinating paint colors and a pencil can do. But that wasn’t the only overhaul I wanted to do in the room. Check out all of the projects I created in this mountain themed room here! (Link will be added soon)

This is a progress shot. I still added one more mountain range and the sky color after this was taken.

Supplies

  • pencil
  • coordinating paint colors, 3 or more
  • paint brush for lines
  • paint brush for filling in large spaces (or roller)
  • painters tape
  • plastic or paper floor covering
  • latter or step stool

Tips

Depending on how many colors you use and the size of your wall, you likely won’t need a gallon of each color. I was able to get away with paint sample bottles from Home Depot. I had 6 colors including the hue I chose for the sky. I suggest using at least 3 mountain colors and 1 sky color. I also got 2 bottles each of the sky color and the lowest/closest mountain color since they had more area to cover.

Pick colors from dark to light. You want that fading feeling so it looks more authentic, like you’re really looking at some true mountains.

Draw out all your scenery first, all your levels of mountains. And don’t get too hung up on perfection, especially if you have textured walls. It actually makes for a rocky short of appearance, more authentic in my opinion!

Pull your tape off when wall is totally dry, preferably overnight. My started to peel the paint since it was a little gummy still. Oops

Primer is your friend, it prevents chipping especially in kids rooms. And get some paint that is washable and prevents chipping.

Directions

  • First prep your area to be painted. Line the floor with plastic or paper and tape in place. Use painters tape for the borders and edges and remove wall outlet covers or tape and cover them, whichever you prefer.
  • Next start priming your wall and planning how you want your mountains to look. Pinterest the heck out of it! I didn’t like the unrealistic look of straight triangle mountains so I decided on more bumpy gradual mountains. Plus, that worked easier with my walls texture!
  • After your primer has completely dried and is set, draw your mountains on the wall in pencil. You may need a ruler depending on what style you are doing. You can erase and reapply as much as you need! Focus on doing multi level ranges that hide behind one another and disappear in some parts.
  • Start with your line brush and the darkest color you chose. Follow your lowest pencil lines keeping the paint below them. Trace your lines all the way across being careful not to mix up your next set of mountain ranges.
  • Once the line is done, start filling in the space below with the same color. Do your edging and borders at the corners and baseboards.
  • When done rinse your brushes or use a separate set.
  • Then move onto the next, slightly lighter, color. You’ll do the top lines first, then come back and do the bottom line where the 2 colors meet. After that you’ll fill in the space. Watch out for dripping!
This is the completed scene! I don’t think this picture does it justice, it looks way cooler in person.

Give it a go, show me your skills and talents! Stay tuned for the other crafts in this mountain themed room!

Parenting a Person With ADHD: Chapter 4-Deep Breathing and Other Tools

This post may contain affiliate links. Please view our affiliate policy and our terms and conditions here. I am not a mental health professional, all the opinions in this post are my own and reflect what has worked for me. None is of this is given as medical or professional advice. Please seek professional advice in the matters of mental/physical health should you or a loved one need it.

Holy heck it’s been awhile since my last post! Needless to say, life got rather crazy there for a little bit but that’s a story for another time . Without further ado, let’s get into it and back on track!

If you haven’t read the first parts in this series here are the links:

This post is going to focus on tools/skills to be used in the heat of the moment. These are helpful for adults to learn themselves and teach to kids. These also work best when you the adult are doing these with your own emotions and stressful moments.

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By far one of the most helpful skills we utilize (with ourselves and our sons) is deep breathing. We use it when the energy is too high and the kids are bouncing off the walls; when any of us are getting upset and starting to loose our patience; and we use it in both the calm down corner and time-out.

I have to say it’s extremely gratifying to hear your kiddo using their deep breathing exercises (that they used to fight you on) all on their own while they are seated in the calm down corner or on time-out. We had that success roughly a year into working with our counselor and implementing these tactics, which seems like a long time when you’re in the thick of it but looking back, that year flew by quickly.

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There’s a ton of variations on how to do deep breathing and make it fun for kids (your counselor may have some books that make it fun too! See Chapter 6 for some we used) but our kiddo likes the “snake breathing” the best. You take a slow deep belly breath in through the nose then you breath out making a “SSSSSS” sound while keeping your breath controlled and steady. Do this at least 3 times, I find 5+ is best, and see who can make the sound the longest!

We often do this right before bedtime, and it helps set the mood and mind for the next steps (usually lullabies) of the nightly routine.

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The other tool we used was the S.T.O.P skill. It’s ultimately an acronym for: S-Stop what you’re doing, stop engaging, stop moving, just STOP. T-Take a step back, both mentally and physically, to pull yourself out of the situation and get out of your emotional state. O-Observe, how you are feeling, how others are feeling around you, put yourself in their shoes and try to see how they are experiencing this interaction. P-Plan what your next step is now that you have removed yourself from the heat of the moment, gotten some perspective, and seen the situation from all sides.

For our son this was some pretty advanced stuff and he worked with it like a champ. The reality is, we just introduced this skill to him to start the process of learning and practicing it. Because that’s what this is all about! We all have heard “practice makes perfect” but there is no such thing as perfection, it’s an illusion. I prefer “practice makes permanent”. The more you do something the better you know it and how to do it and are more likely to do it in the future.

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Sometimes there are outbursts that my son has where I just kinda have to to let him come down on his own. His therapist described it as “letting the train get through the tunnel” and once he’s able to see the light on the other side and rejoin the rest of us, I’m then able to use the skills above or talk about how he got to that high level of anger or whatever other feeling he was having. We usually end this discussion with a hug it out session .

Sometimes the best thing you can do for your kid….is nothing. And it’s not doing nothing and acting like you don’t care. You’re doing nothing while still being available; you’re giving them space (and respecting their individual needs) while keeping the boundaries in place and showing that you are consistent and can be counted on to be there once they chill out and need a hug or snugs.

What’s your go to skill for calming yourself or your little one down? Tell me about it in the comments.

Next time: Parenting a Person With ADHD: It Takes a Village

Dealing With Those Hard Days

This post may contain affiliate links. Please view our affiliate policy and our terms and conditions here. I am not a mental health professional, all the opinions in this post are my own and reflect what has worked for me. None is of this is given as medical or professional advice. Please seek professional advice in the matters of mental/physical health should you or a loved one need it.

I’m gonna start this post off with a trigger warning. It’s not regarding violence or addiction but this subject I’m about to broach can be a really sensitive one for some. I strongly feel this is a conversation we need to be having more often and normalizing, both within ourselves and with our peers. It needs to be a conversation without judgement and with lots of room for grace and understanding. I ask that we practice kindness to yourselves and others.

There are some days when I don’t like my son. This is a hard feeling to have as a parent, and it’s even harder to talk about. I love my child, I jump through hoops frequently to give him what he needs…but it doesn’t change that some days he acts like an asshat and is hard to be around. This topic usually sends most people running for the hills when brought up in casual conversation. Whether it be they are scared to discuss it with others, or scared to admit that they’ve had these feelings themselves; we as parents still need to address this turmoil inside that some of us face.

If I tell you that while growing up there were days I didn’t like my mom, you wouldn’t blink an eye; most people struggled with parental relationships as a youth. Some of us still do as adults.

So why is it such taboo if it’s the other way around?

Why are we, as parents, left to feel guilty when we don’t want to hang out with the screaming jerk-face that just happens to be our off-spring? If it was any other jerk-face behaving that way people would be telling us to get the heck away from them!

But for some inexplicable reason the tables turn when the culprit is someone you’ve had a hand in creating and/or raising. The funny thing is though-WE DON’T CHOOSE OUR KIDS! We don’t choose who they are from birth and we don’t get to choose who they become. Certainly, we have the job of guiding them down better paths but we are not the one’s in the drivers seat, much as we may want to be sometimes.

Yet somehow we allow others to convince us that if only we did this thing instead of that, then everything would have ended up perfect for our child. We tell ourselves “I should have done this better, I should have handled that differently” and while yes there is always room to improve, we are forgetting the reality every parent faces: that children don’t come with an instruction manual, and even if they did each child would require their own version. They are all different people. They are all unique and individual.

What works for calming my eldest right now, will likely not work for my littlest when he gets to crossing that same bridge. And how my littlest knows I love him is different than how my eldest receives my love. Both wants snuggles when they are sick; both are busy and active on a constant basis. But each has a very different relationship with me. I love them equally, and that is with my whole heart; however what they need from me as a parent is varied and different. It is unique and individual, just like them.

So although we cannot choose who are children are or will become, we CAN choose to love and accept them as they are. I make that choice, everyday. Because love is a choice, it is work and commitment. Regardless of the attitude or behaviors being thrown my way, I do my best to remind each of my boys that they are loved and wanted and they are special, to the world and to me. Even on days when I don’t like being around them, I still love them with my whole heart. And I let them know it.

Parenting a Person With ADHD: Chapter 3-The Calm Down Corner *Plus Bonus Craft!*

This post may contain affiliate links. Please view our affiliate policy and our terms and conditions here. I am not a mental health professional, all the opinions in this post are my own and reflect what has worked for me. None is of this is given as medical or professional advice. Please seek professional advice in the matters of mental/physical health should you or a loved one need it.

This is chapter 3 of the series Parenting a Person With ADHD. If you haven’t already, please read the prologue, chapter 1, and chapter 2 so you are up to speed on the information.

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Creating a calm down corner was one of my favorite things about the changes we made. We specifically made the calm down toys ourselves so it became a craft, rather than a chore or forced activity. It put a positive spin on a calming place and set the tone for how we wanted the area to function. It was also a good bonding activity for myself and my son to do together.

Calm Down Corner Craft

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We did 2 different themed bottles: one with water and oil and glitter; the other with water, water absorbing polymer beads, and glitter. For both, the water was colored with food dye. My son picked the colors of glitter and water because it’s important to include your child throughout the process of making changes in the household. That way they feel like their voice is still being heard and they are able to exert some control. Allowing him choices in a controlled setting shows him he does have power over his choices, which is a skill in and of itself!

Directions: add your water to the bottles then color it, shake with lid on to mix. Fill the bottles with water about half way for the oil one and 3/4 for the other. Add your glitter to each bottle. We did about 2 Tbsp in each, but add as much or as little as you like. Then add your oil to the one bottle and your polymer beads to the other. For the oil bottle leave a little bit of space for air. For the polymer beads add 5 at a time and allow to fully absorb the water. We ultimately added like 20 beads and topped off the water once we were done. Then use the super glue on the inside screw threads of each lid, tighten the lids on and allow to dry per manufacturer instructions before you play with them.

We keep these bottles in the calm down corner and they are only allowed to be played with if you are there. It helps to keep them feeling “special” while you’re in the calm down corner.

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We also hung up some pages from his therapist, like a thermometer of how high your emotion was that landed you in the calm down corner and of the S.T.O.P. skill (I’ll do a post about that soon). Here’s a different emotion chart that helps kids learn what emotion they are feeling.

The other big factor about the calm down corner is that it’s chosen by the child. We offer our son the option to go to the calm down corner when we see him beginning to get upset. He chooses to go of his own free will or not. If he doesn’t go, he usually gets more upset and makes choices that land him in time-out….which is by our appointing, not his.

This little action of letting kids pick their own consequence goes a long way. Plus it teaches children how to start self regulating their own emotions (which is a challenge for most kids, let alone one’s with behavioral struggles). When they are in the calm down corner, they decide when they are ready to come back to the activity at hand.

Occasionally (and when starting out) you’ll have to send them back because they weren’t actually ready to return to the activity at hand; they’re still too wound up but that’s just part of the process-it becomes sort of a natural consequence.

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Also, time-outs are used as a last resort and a no tolerance tool. Meaning that if my child does something that is absolutely unacceptable-like hitting, spitting, back-talking, breaking or throwing things, ect-he gets put directly to time-out and I decide for how long. We keep the rule of 1 minute per year of age starting at 2 years and that seems to work fine for us.

For most kids, you can explain briefly why they are there and that you will get them when their time is done. For my child I have to say nothing, any talking with him becomes a form of engagement in his eyes. I don’t want to reinforce that he gets my attention while in time-out so he gets the silent treatment or the one phrase treatment. “Go to time-out”, I say it once. If he squawks, I go put him to the garage which is right next to our time-out area.

This works like a sort of reset button for him, similar to the calm down corner. He decides when he’s ready to come back in and finish his time-out but if he keeps making poor choices he’ll keep being sent to the garage. It then gets put on him to manage his emotions to get out of time-out. Same thing for when he used to try to leave time-out; I physically and silently go get him and put him back. For as many times as it takes…..I’m glad he doesn’t do that anymore. The garage upgrade seemed to fix that.

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Retraining kids on what is expected and tolerated is tough work. But the right tools and planning can make it a lot smoother. Giving them the opportunity to try again with a calming environment they can go to helps them to seek out space when they need it and redirect their our emotions in a positive way.

Next time on Parenting a Person With ADHD: Deep Breathing and Other Tools

Parenting a Person With ADHD: Chapter 2-Reward System

This post may contain affiliate links. Please view our affiliate policy and our terms and conditions here. I am not a mental health professional, all the opinions in this post are my own and reflect what has worked for me. None is of this is given as medical or professional advice. Please seek professional advice in the matters of mental/physical health should you or a loved one need it.

This is the 2nd chapter in the series “Parenting a Person With ADHD”. If you have not already, please read the prologue here and chapter 1 here.

Now onto the reward system and the correct way to do positive reinforcement. Because yes there is a wrong way…in fact I’d say there’s lots of wrong ways.

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When we first tried positive reinforcement we did the typical sticker chart but we really didn’t have a true set system, let alone a successful one. Some thing we did implement (that was terribly wrong, at least for our kid) was taking the stickers back if he earned a negative consequence from poor choices. This was confusing for him because the positive choices he made weren’t getting fully rewarded and instead were getting wiped out by negative choices. So the focus still ended up on the negative, not the positive. On top of this, the rewards weren’t the most tangible or as instant as he needed at the time. He needed to be able to have literally instant results. A lot of kids who struggle with defiance need this approach as well.

When we started seeing the counselor, she had us use tickets (you could also use marbles, hence the photo ) that he gets to put into a jar and he can use them to earn prizes. The important part here is that the tickets need to have currency for the kid! They have to feel valuable to the kid in order to be effective. That value comes from the prizes or rewards they can get using the tickets or marbles!

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The prizes we did initially were coupons (homemade or bought, either are great, one is simpler ) with things like “Have a pajama day” or ” You pick dinner” or “Get out of one chore”. At one point, we opted to make an actual prize box that our kiddo picked items from, but it didn’t seem as motivating for him. Currently he uses his tickets for screen time and other special to him things: watch his favorite show, use his tablet, go to the park, choose a family activity or game night. He still enjoys the coupons for special occasions or once in a blue moon.

For older kids they can use their tickets for trips or treats such as a trip to the ice cream parlor or the beach or for a slumber party (if you do those) or whatever else they enjoy and is feasible for you to give/do consistently. Alone time with you can also be a reward they earn; they pick the activity for you both to enjoy and use however many tickets to do said activity.

Be cautious with how large you make the goals. They need to be attainable in a small amount of time when starting out (like 5 or 10 tickets for a prize) and you can slowly increase the number of tickets needed as time goes on and your child’s skills improve. You want them working for those rewards, not having them handed out like candy on Halloween.

It’s also important to really give tickets for EVERY positive thing you see your child doing in the beginning. “I noticed you stayed calm when it was time to go, here’s a ticket” or if you’re not there yet “You did a great job keeping your hands and feet to yourself when you were upset” or, my personal favorite “Thank you for not peeing your pants while on time-out, you made a good choice. Here’s your ticket”.

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Yes I’ve said every single one of these and more. So. Many. More. Eventually you will get to the point where you work on specific things you want your child to do differently. Like brushing teeth without yelling, or listening the first time (I still have my hopes up for this one), or not talking back. As time goes by they will have to work harder to earn the tickets to get the prizes. Just start small and find the positive, no matter how little it may be.

Next time on Parenting a Person With ADHD: The Calm Down Corner

Parenting a Person With ADHD: Chapter 1-Ignoring The Negative

This post may contain affiliate links. Please view our affiliate policy and our terms and conditions here. I am not a mental health professional, all the opinions in this post are my own and reflect what has worked for me. None is of this is given as medical or professional advice. Please seek professional advice in the matters of mental/physical health should you or a loved one need it.

This is the 2nd part in my new series “Parenting a Person With ADHD”.

In the prologue, I went over how we as a family got to where we are today and briefly discussed some of the tools we used. In this chapter I will be going over in detail the first tool: ignoring the negative nonsense.

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To actively ignore someone takes skill, patience, and practice. To actively ignore your own offspring while they are attempting, very hard, to REGAIN your attention….well that takes the above things and some direct, frequent support. Either from someone who’s been through it or a professional skilled in managing cases like this. Someone whom can give you reassurance. Because this one skill is probably one of the most important and effective.

We started living by the rule: if it wasn’t hurting someone or something, and wouldn’t lead to undesired behaviors later, it could be ignored.

To achieve this can sometimes be tricky. There’s a lot of behaviors/actions that fall into a grey area. I’ve found the easiest way to sort out some of those in between things was to ask ourselves “Is this an actual problem or do I just have a problem with him doing this?”. For example, he used to love being upside down on the couch. I had to readjust myself and learn to be ok with him having his legs up in the air. My only rule was his legs had to be still-no kicking or squirming as that becomes dangerous to others. Now, he doesn’t sit like that anymore. I let it go, and so did he.

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You may be familiar with the saying you get more of what you pay attention to and that is quite true. Especially for a child with ADHD who is defiant and/or has ODD. They like to know they can get a rise out of you, it gives them a sense of control in a world where they have very little control. They like being in control (I don’t blame them, so do most of us) and have a hard time when they are not. Ensue melt down.

The way to break this cycle is to take your own control back…by not giving into the cycle in the first place. When you actively ignore your child’s negative behavior they will (eventually) see they no longer effect your mood/actions with how they choose to act. So they will stop, because the norm has changed. Then they will learn to re-set their brain into active choice making rather than instant response.

Now, keep in mind this will take time. Sometimes a long time. And you cannot, I repeat CAN NOT, give up anywhere in the middle of this transition period. Otherwise you will have just reinforced all over again that they can get a rise out of you, and it will be that much harder to get them, and yourself, to make lasting and meaningful change. This is really a time when consistency counts.

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This is usually the most exhausting part of parenting a defiant child for many. You don’t have room for many mistakes and you don’t have the luxury to throw in the towel. For our son we still have to do this every so often! He’ll be turning 7 this year and we started this when he was 5, just to give you an idea of the road ahead. But he rarely ever needs this now, and he never throws fits like he used to. But the reality of raising a person with ODD or defiant ADHD is that these issues will never fully go away; these skills will always be needed.

Stay tuned for the next chapter: Reward System

Staycation: Vacation On A Budget

You may not have heard of the term “staycation” before. Until a few years ago, certainly I hadn’t. One of my co-workers at the time told me how she was taking her grandkids for the weekend and they were doing a staycation at a local hotel. I instantly thought this was genius! You get all the fun of going someplace new, usually with a pool and free breakfast, without the 2+ hour drive to get anywhere out of town. Because no one wants to hear “Are we there yet” for the entire car ride anywhere.

I’ve compiled some fun places that you can look for in your local area. Plus if you’re in the Treasure Valley you’re in luck, because I’ve gathered some specific sites to check out on your next at home adventure!

Bed and Breakfasts

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This is first on the list because I prefer to support local business as much and as often as possible. Plus you get a very unique and non-cookie cutter experience. Usually each room has it’s own variation of theme, it’s own personality so to speak. Plus I’ve seen some AMAZING bath tubs in these places that are worthy of royalty. Check out the local B&B’s in your area and meet the wonderful people who own it during your stay!

For my Treasure Valley peep’s, here’s a list of some of the top rated B&B’s

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AirBnB

For those unfamiliar, this is where you stay in a home or room that someone rents out for short term use. Some people have their entire house available; others have just the upstairs for use or have separate rooms with people staying in each. I’ve included a link to AirBnB’s website since what’s available depends on when and where you plan to stay. You can have very unique experiences in some really amazing homes. I find this option works best if you have multiple people pitching in together and you all rent out a nice house for the weekend or how ever long. Book these well in advance since they tend to fill up fast!

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Campsites

As long as the weather permits (unless your into snow camping, go you!), camping is a great cost effective option! There’s nothing quite like getting out in nature and sleeping under the stars. Many of us have fond memories of sitting by the campfire with our friends and family, telling stories or singing songs, and munching on s’mores. This is also a wonderful way to get and stay “unplugged” during your staycation. If you’re looking for a digital detox-this is your top option.

Reserve America is the main choice for booking campsite online. They tend to fill up fast (especially in Idaho) so plan on booking this 6 months in advance. They also have links to hunting/fishing, RVing, and hiking. It’s honestly a great resource to keep in your back pocket for future use. Other online booking links are Recreation.gov, Hipcamp, and Go Camping America.

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RV Rental

For those who prefer a mattress over a cot and sleeping bag, there’s always renting an RV! The great thing about this is there are SO many RV parks that you can staycation at. Most of them have additional amenities and/or beautiful scenery. Plus you can book your stay using the links from the camping section above! RVing and camping kinda go hand in hand.

You might be asking yourself, “How do I rent and RV?”. You can literally google search it; people rent out their RV’s via AirBnB, Facebook Market Place, Craigslist, and most other forums. Or you can get one from a specialized RV renting facility.

If you’re in the Boise Area here’s the top rated facilities

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Chain Motels

These may be common but it doesn’t mean they are always run of the mill. You can usually count on consistency with larger chain hotels/motels. Plus they typically have all the amenities you come to expect with staying at a location. They also tend to be more cost effective than some of the higher end luxury options, while still keeping comfort as a priority.

For the locals, here’s some centrally located chains

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Chain Suites

This kind of mixes in with the chain hotel/motel category, but these usually have only suites available and therefore a higher price point. These also are going to be more luxurious and have nicer amenities such as fine dining on sight, spa/salon on sight, extravagant pool, etc. Look for “suites” in the name of where you’d like to stay to help filter out other options. This tends to be a better pick if you’ve got older kids who can appreciate the finer atmosphere or just going as a couple for some alone time.

Here’s some of the best suites in the Treasure Valley

I hope this list has inspired you to get out there without feeling like you need a large budget to do something fun for the weekend! Let me know where you’ve stayed in the comments!