The best gift you can give a special needs parent is that of understanding, compassion, admiration and respect.

This holiday give that special needs parent the ultimate present, the gift of empowerment. A simple holiday card with your message of support along with a brilliant writing from one of our selected authors can make a difference way beyond the words.


“Refreshingly free of dogma, disinformation, and heavy-handed agendas, The Thinking Person’s Guide to Autism is an oasis of sanity, compassion, and hope for people on the spectrum
and those who love them.”

– Steve Silberman, senior writer for Wired magazine and autism/neurodiversity blogger for the Public Library of Science
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It is our great hope that Bright Not Broken helps parents, teachers, and other interested adults ensure that these tremendously gifted children are plucked out of the ‘‘problem kid’’ abyss in which they’re often trapped, are properly nurtured, and grow up to make their own contributions to society.
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“ADHD Medication Rules” is the only book available that spells out and simplifies those essential medication details for both patients and professionals. “ADHD Medication Rules” offers those medical answers in the form of understandable, practical solutions for everyday practice, for every medication review. “Rules” is based upon the latest brain science, and includes a variety of associated treatment topics that address the real complexity of ADHD medical management.
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“This book does not bash or blame educators. Nor, for that matter, does it bash or blame challenging kids or their parents. It’s about the need to make dramatic changes in a system that isn’t working for teachers, parents, or challenging kids, and how to go about making those changes.”
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Interactive as well as inspirational, DARE TO TAKE CHARGE challenges the reader to ask self-reflective questions that lead to moments of self-discovery and a defined pathway to healing. Daring her audience to study the positive with the same interest and intensity that they study the negative, Judge Hatchett uncovers the potential for grace and success in lives that are now punctuated with despair and unfaithfulness.
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All children and teens can be challenging at times, but some are different. They don’t seem to respond as well to the sensible consequences and strategies that work with other kids. At Connected Parenting, you’ll learn to use the tools that therapists use to help your child to develop the emotional and neurological hardware they need to deal with whatever life throws at them.
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“The shot heard round the psychiatric world” About.com wrote that the first edition of The Bipolar Child was “the shot heard round the psychiatric world” as this book began to change the way child psychiatry understood children suffering with these symptoms, and how they should, (and should not be) treated. In the book, the Papoloses were the first to sound a national alarm about the dangers of using antidepressant and stimulant drugs with this population of children. A second edition was published in 2002, and a substantively revised third edition in 2007. The Papoloses continue to provide the cutting-edge information that parents and professionals have come to rely on.
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Every parent fears “losing” their child. But in this revolutionary book, youthologist Vanessa Van Petten translates what parents want to say into what teens want to hear.
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Here, in Temple Grandin’s own words, is the story of what it is like to live with autism, to be among the few people who have broken through many of the neurological impairments associated with autism. Throughout her life, she has developed unique coping strategies, including her famous “squeeze machine,” which she modeled after seeing the calming effect of squeeze chutes on cattle. She describes her painful isolation growing up “different” and her discovery of visual symbols to interpret the “ways of the natives.” Thinking In Pictures also gives information from the front lines of autism, including treatment, medication, and diagnosis, as well as Temple’s insights into genius, savants, sensory phenomena, and animal behavior. Ultimately, it is Temple’s unique ability to describe the way her visual mind works and how she first made the connection between her impairment and animal temperament that is the basis of her extraordinary gift and phenomenal success.
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Most of us believe that the best way to motivate ourselves and others is with external rewards like money—the carrot-and-stick approach. That’s a mistake, Daniel H. Pink says in, Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us, his provocative and persuasive new book. The secret to high performance and satisfaction—at work, at school, and at home—is the deeply human need to direct our own lives, to learn and create new things, and to do better by ourselves and our world.
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The author, who writes the parenting blog “Surviving (Your Child’s) Adolescence” for Psychology Today, begins by defining the concept of adolescence in all its stages before investigating the concept of delayed maturity (what he terms “trial independence”) and what that means for your child. Pickhardt offers a practical guide for understanding and supporting early adults as individuals while still respecting their nascent freedom. Children who fail on their own often find themselves returning to their original state—back under their parents’ roof. The author candidly discusses how parenting styles must evolve to create sustainable relationships as children first enter adulthood. Each chapter provides fictitious examples of a challenge a late-stage adolescent will face while entering into a living and working situation that is entirely self-supported. The strength of the book is its thoroughness—the author draws from his experiences counseling parents and children alike in order to provide realistic solutions to problems both will face during this transitional period.
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What do elevators, beloved character actor Wilford Brimley, mall maps, flashing yellow traffic lights, the Weather Channel, and Allstate commercials have in common? Not much other than they all are on Griffin’s list of favorite hobbies and interests. Over the years, Griffin has embraced these simple pleasures with the same passion some kids reserve for their favorite professional sports teams. Upon hearing Griffin’s diagnosis of autism over a decade ago, his parents felt as though their world ended. They often wished there was a resource available to show, in a lighthearted and humorous way, that having a child with a disability was not all gloom and doom but rather could be a lot of fun. First with his hilarious blog and now with this book, Griffin’s dad has tried to fill this void, and launch a crusade, of sorts, to make the public aware that life doesn’t end with a diagnosis of a cognitive disability.
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Do people suggest that your child is different – really different? Are you wondering how to make sense of your child’s behavior (or your spouse’s – or your own)? Don’t despair; help is on the way! Bobbi Sheahan and psychologist Kathy DeOrnellas, Ph.D., offer themselves as your scouts in the field. They have valuable information to share – from the moment you realize your kid is different (“My, what a quiet baby I have!”), to the self-righteous moms on the playground, to holding your marriage together in the realm of routines, they candidly tackle autism spectrum issues such as picky eating, bedtime battles, potty training, speech delays, discipline, early intervention, sibling rivalry, and much more!
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Finally, a practical, well-organized book for parents of youngsters with reading and learning disabilities that provides a comprehensive process for developing and getting appropriate programs. Especially important are the sections on assessing risk, understanding evaluations, understanding the principles of reading instruction, and resolving conflicts with schools. Together, they arm parents with the comprehensive, practical, in-depth, realistic tools they need to help their children. This is truly the best book I have read on the subject. It is well-written and sorely overdue – Arthur Shapiro, Ed.D., Professor Emeritus, Special Education & Counseling, Kean University
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Helps parents establish the best educational plan for their child and stresses the importance of taking action and getting involved at school, with teachers, and at home.
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What would you call a four year old who caresses all the lampposts in the park? Quirky? Unusual? Or sick?
Such labels are at the center of the debate about autism: is it a disease or a different way of being—or both? In Loving Lampposts, we witness this debate and meet the parents, doctors, therapists, and autistic people who are redefining autism at a moment when it’s better known than ever before. Motivated by his son’s diagnosis, filmmaker Todd Drezner explores the changing world of autism and learns the truth of the saying, “if you’ve met one autistic person, you’ve met one autistic person.” This item is a DVD
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What are you to do when your cheerful, friendly family members morph overnight into sarcastic, sullen, teens? How can you get through to these hormonally challenged strangers when all you get in return are sighs and eyerolls?
Thankfully, this book reveals the groundbreaking strategies you can use to maintain good communication, healthy interaction, and strong connections to your teen, no matter how rocky the road to puberty becomes.
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Dr. Sears’ latest book since 2005, Toxic Fat, provides a revolutionary new understanding of our current obesity epidemic by showing that it can be treated through a clinically proven pathway that can change the expression of your genes using food as a drug to rid your body of toxic fat. Only when this toxic fat starts to spread into the bloodstream does it begin to attack your other organs leading to early development of chronic disease.
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“This Is Your Brain on Joy” will help people find answers to struggles they have in their personal lives, in relationships, and career. For over a decade now I have been working with SPECT brain imaging to help balance brain chemistry issues to help people with addictions, anxiety, depression, ADD, and so many other issues. The brain does play a role in everything you do! It plays a significant role for men in their roles as a father to their sons and daughters…the kind of husband, son, grandfather they are. As an example if anger is a issue, yes it can be wounds from their father that have not been healed that play a role in how anger is expressed. What we have also learned is anger that is expressed through verbal abuse, control, etc. might also be the result of the concussion that they received in high school playing football! Their might be trauma to the temporal lobes that impacts how they manage anger. I find when the brain is balanced, then better control of anger occurs along with the ability to stay in touch with their feelings, and express them without causing hurt. Of course I do not mean to imply that this is just a male problem…of course women struggle with these issues as well!
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Sensational Kids is the book no parent, teacher, or caregiver of children with SPD should be without. Written with warmth and filled with stories, Sensational Kids is the must-have book about SPD.
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Priscilla Gilman had the greatest expectations for the birth of her first child. Growing up in New York City amongst writers, artists, and actors, Gilman experienced childhood as a whirlwind of imagination, creativity, and spontaneity. As a Wordsworth scholar, she celebrated and embraced the poet’s romantic view of children—and eagerly anticipated her son’s birth, certain that he, too, would come “trailing clouds of glory.” But her romantic vision would not be fulfilled in the ways she dreamed. Though Benjamin was an extraordinary child, the signs of his precocity—dazzling displays of memory and intelligence—were also manifestations of a developmental disorder that would require intensive therapies and special schooling, and would dramatically alter the course Priscilla had imagined for her family.
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For kids who need extra help with sensory integration, motor, language, communication, and attention skills, cooking offers a multitude of opportunities to help them work on these skills while having fun.

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Brilliant Book – New York Times Bestseller
“As sweet and funny and sad and true and heartfelt a memoir as one could find.” Augusten Burroughs
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An Absolute Must Read – Over the past sixty years, we’ve witnessed a phenomenal growth in the number of new psychiatric illnesses. The American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, first published in 1952, originally listed about 100 categories of illness. By the year 2000, that number had tripled. We’ve become accustomed to hearing in the news about “learning disabilities,” “ADHD,” “Asperger’s syndrome,” and other conditions that were virtually unheard of fifty years ago. A report from the National Institute of Mental Health indicates that about one-fourth of the American population suffers from a psychiatric disorder in any given year, and an article in the Archives of General Psychology suggested that over the course of a lifetime, approximately half of all people may suffer from a mental illness sometime during their lives. Add to this the observation by Harvard Medical School professor John Ratey that many people have milder versions of psychiatric conditions (he calls them “shadow syndromes”), and we come to the conclusion that when all is said and done, nearly every individual in the country may have a psychiatric illness to one degree or another.
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Areva Martin gives the information every parent needs to hear
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Motor development is a crucial factor in a child’s physical, emotional, academic and overall success. Joye Newman, Director of Kids Moving Company, and Carol Kranowitz co-authored this new book that gives parents, teachers, and other professionals the tools to give every child a head start and a leg up. The In-Sync Program includes 60 adaptable and fun activities to enhance your child’s development, in just minutes a day
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The award-winning balance MAP is a an innovative tool to help parents take control of, organize, and enjoy their busy lives. It’s like a GPS for parenthood that takes you from where you are today, to where you’d like to be, as you juggle the demands of your family life. This item is an online program.
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In this straightforward guide, Silverman explores weight obsession in teenage girls, outlining ways that parents can help their daughters succeed in a “thin-is-in” world. Silverman had previously compiled “The Good Girls’ Weight Rules” list of negative beliefs that society pushes on girls, such as “my emotions should depend on how fat I feel” and “I strive for size zero.” She believes that girls should be taught to swap these harmful ideas for positive mottos (which she calls “Asset Girls’ Ten Commandments) stressing confidence and achievements. Silverman outlines the causes behind an unhealthy body image and what parents can do to combat it, interspersing her advice with quizzes and stories from teens she’s interviewed. Focusing mainly on mothers and daughters, Silverman also explores ways that fathers can reinforce a positive body image.
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Dr. B. Duncan McKinlay, Psychologist (‘Dr. Dunc’) has Tourette Syndrome. That means he’s been living with both motor tics (movements he has a hard time stopping) and phonic tics (noises he has a hard time stopping) for most of his life. He knows firsthand how annoying, embarrassing, misunderstood, painful, and disruptive tics can be. For years, he’s been educating people all around the world by means of his presentations & Website, and through appearances on television, in magazines, and on film. Now, in “Nix Your Tics!”, he wants to share with you a little-known but well-established, evidence-based practice* he uses to manage tic symptoms in both himself and in his patients.
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And Last but not least – One of Marianne’s Top Picks for parents, children and teens

Go on an incredible journey back in time to a world without disability. An amazing book that children, teens and adults will remember. There Are No Words has now earned nine literary awards.
Mom’s Choice Award (Gold)
Moonbeam Children’s Book Award (Bronze)
Creative Child Magazine’s Seal of Approval
Parent-Tested, Parent-Approved Media Award
Eric Hoffer Award
International Book Award
IBBY’s “Outstanding Book for Young People with Disabilities”
Hollywood Book Festival Honorable Mention
Nashville Book Festival Runner-up
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Respite and time to re-energize are key to restoring strength to a parent often enduring incredible emotional pain and fatigue. Why not throw in our IOU respite card – it’s free! Download and create a card redeemable any time.
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8 Responses to The Coffee Klatch Parent’s Holiday Book Wish list

  1. Marianne,
    Thanks so much for including ADHD Med Rules in this outstanding list of books with great utilitarian value! I loved the interview with you Sunday night, Nov 27 – you clearly did your homework on the meds and the many details that matter so much!

    Best wishes for the Holidays!
    Chuck

  2. This is a superlative list, and we’re glad to be on it! Happy holidays to all. Warm regards, Joye and Carol

  3. I am very excited to see two books I adore on this list–”Big Daddy’s Tales” and Bobbi Sheahan’s “What I Wished I’d Known”. Both deserve places on your bookshelves. Big Daddy will give you a chance to laugh, and Bobbi sprinkles humor and hope throughout her book as well.

  4. Pingback: Best Parenting Articles For The Holidays | Family Anatomy - Family Anatomy

  5. Pingback: Top 5 Special Ideas for Special Families for the Holidays. | mynewfavoriteday

  6. I join Carol in thanking you for for including our book, “Growing an In-Sync Child” on this wonderful list for parents. Wouldn’t it be great if everyone gave their children wooden spoons and balls, instead of electronics and computers as gifts for the holidays? We suggest that after the gifts have all been opened, parents give their children the empty boxes to play with. What fun!

  7. Pingback: Six Special Ideas for Special Families for the Holidays. - The SPD Blogger Network

  8. I constantly spent my half an hour to read this blog’s content daily along with a mug of coffee.

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