Monday, February 6, 2012


You know you are behind on your blog posting when it is February 6th and you are just getting around to wishing everyone a happy new year! Oh, and by the way, happy holidays as well!

It has been a busy few months in peer parenting. We have oodles of cases and most peer parents are keeping very busy. Thanks to everyone who is stepping up and increasing their case load. I hope to train a few new peer parents this coming Saturday at our first basic peer parent training of 2012.

January's advanced training was all about stress and anger management...a great time of year for that subject! We had a good turn-out and endulged in chocolate treats (my kind of stress relief!) Our next advanced training is on March 17th when we'll discuss "Stress Burnout and Secondary Trauma" for peer parents. We'll cap off the training with a pity party...more information about that fun event later!

If you're a trained peer parent and you haven't been contacted about a case, it's time for you to get in touch with me. Sometimes it is a matter of your location and/or your schedule and how they match up to the client referrals we have. Sometimes it is because I am not aware that you are wanting a peer parent case. Whatever the reason, please contact me because I would love to put you to work if at all possible.

Quotes from January training...

"Chocolate is cheaper than therapy and you don't need an appointment."

"Stress wouldn't be so hard to take if it were chocolate covered."

"When life gives you lemons, throw them back and demand chocolate."

"Hand over the chocolate and nobody gets hurt."

Wednesday, November 16, 2011


We had a big turn-out at our last advanced training on Saturday, November 12th. If you weren't able to make it, we missed you! We discussed abuse and neglect - not the happiest of subjects but very important. I appreciate the comments offered by peer parents - I always learn so much from each of you. I had made a thanksgiving treat for everyone but I forgot to hand them out! Sorry!

I read a poem at the end of the training and several of you wanted a copy so here it is...


My name is Misty
I am but three
My eyes are swollen
I cannot see.

I must be stupid
I must be bad,
What else could have made
My daddy so mad?

I wish I were better
I wish I weren't ugly,
Then maybe my mommy
Would still want to hug me.

I can't speak at all
I can't do a wrong
Or else I'm locked up
All the day long.

When I awake
I'm all alone
The house is dark
My folks aren't home.

When my mommy does come
I'll try and be nice,
So maybe I'll get
Just one whipping tonight.

Don't make a sound!
I just heard a car,
My daddy is back
From Charlie's Bar.

I hear him curse
My name he calls.
I press myself
Against the wall.

I try and hide
From his evil eyes,
I'm so afraid now
I'm starting to cry.

He finds me weeping
He shouts ugly words,
He says its my fault
That he suffers at work.

He slaps me and hits me
And yells at me more,
I finally get free
And I run for the door.

He's already locked it
And I start to bawl,
He takes me and throws me
Against the hard wall.

I fall to the floor
With my bones nearly broken,
And My daddy continues
With more bad words spoken.

"I'm sorry!", I scream
But it''s now much too late,
His face has been twisted
Into unimaginable hate.

The hurt and the pain
Again and again,
O please God, have mercy!,
Oh please let it end!

And he finally stops
And heads for the door,
While I lay there motionless
Sprawled on the floor.

My name is Misty
And I am but three,
Tonight my daddy
Murdered me.

(Author unknown)

Preparing the lesson on child abuse/neglect and reading this poem and other heartbreaking information, made me appreciate so much the wonderful things in my life. Among my blessings, I count my associations with each of you. I so much appreciate the sacrifices you make, the empathy you show and the great example you are to so many families who need the support of a good teacher and role model. Have a very happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


Wow, what a slacker I've been. I haven't updated this blog in over three months. I don't know about you...but summer just flew by! We are now entering my absolutely favorite time of year - Fall. I love the cooler weather, the crisp air and the beautiful colors. Even after being out of school for more years than I want to admit, I still feel the excitement of a new school year starting. I love the Fall holidays and look forward to cuddling up in my home for a few months.

Peer parenting was a little slower this summer but has definitely picked up! I trained a bunch of new peer parents in August and would like to welcome Melissa S., Kim A., Dawn W., Ruth B., Crystal M. and Valecia B. We're happy to have you in our peer parent family!

Last Saturday was Advanced Training. The subject was "Education" and I appreciate all the input from peer parents. I mentioned a couple of object lessons that one of our great peer parents, Tiffany Schultz, used with one of her clients. Thanks, Tiffany, for giving me permission to share your creativity and ability to think "outside the box" with other peer parents. We then played Peer Parent Jeopardy to see how much we really know about this great program we work for. Everyone did so well...I'm not surprised since I already know we have the best peer parents in the State! Congratulations to Laura Nelson who won the game and took home a gift card to Applebee's. If you weren't able to make this training, we missed you and hope to see you at the next one which is scheduled for Saturday, November 12th. Look for more information later.

Monday, June 6, 2011


After a long, wet, spring it appears we are finally going to have summer! With the kids out of school, it is time to let your creative juices flow to keep them busy and happy. Here is a simple activity to do with your children...write a poem! Have the kids take turns writing a line that begins with the following letters:









We'd love to hear what your kids come up with so simply hit the comment button and share your finished poem with us!

Last month we had an excellent training about using Love & Logic in our peer parenting. Shirley Brown-Miller, one of our own fantastic peer parents, share her knowledge and expertise with us. We all learned a lot from Shirley and enjoyed her cute personality.

June and August will be basic trainings for those interested in becoming new peer parents. We won't meet again for advanced training until September 17th - so mark your calendars!

Monday, May 9, 2011


Please plan to attend the advanced peer parent training to be held on Saturday, May 21st, from 9:00 to 11:00 in the Clearfield DCFS office. One of our great peer parents, Shirley Brown-Miller, is a certified Love & Logic instructor and she will be giving us some tips for incorporating Love & Logic with the families we work with. This will be a very interesting and helpful class so I hope to see many of you there.

I'm happy to announce that we added 3 new peer parents to our team last month: Michelle Berry, Heather Macari and Meg Kallas. Welcome to the peer parenting family!

Happy Mother's Day to all of you...when you're a peer parent, you're a mother to many!

Thursday, March 24, 2011


Last Saturday we had a great training. Amy Graham, a supervisor with DCFS, took us through the process from initial abuse/neglect reports until the closure of a case. We saw some sad pictures of actual abuse cases and heard many examples from her years of experience. We laughed some, cried a little, and most of all - learned a lot. Thanks, Amy, for sharing your expertise with us and thanks to those of you who came. We had a record 26 peer parents in attendance!

To go along with our "DCFS - From Soup to Nuts" theme, we enjoyed chilled strawberry soup and nut breads. Many of you requested the soup recipe so here it is:

2 cups frozen strawberries
2 cups milk
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup sour cream
2-4 tablespoons sugar to taste (depends on how sweet you like it and whether or not your frozen strawberries are pre-sweetened.)

Puree strawberries, milk, cream and sour cream in a blender or food processor until smooth. Stir in sugar to taste. Chill 8 hours or overnight in refrigerator before serving. Serves 6.

*Photos are courtesy of Trista Andersen, peer parent from Cache County.

Monday, March 7, 2011

I FEEL LUCKY... work with such a wonderful people. Peer parents are the most dedicated, caring, and empathetic people I know. Thank you for your great example to me and your tireless efforts for the families you work with.

Last month I trained a few new peer parents. I'd like to welcome Megan, Velvet, Kera, Lori and Mandy to our peer parent family - we're glad to have you with us!

This month is advanced peer parent training. It will be held on Saturday, March 19, from 9:00 to 11:00 in the Clearfield DCFS. Amy Graham, a superviser from the Clearfield office will take us through the entire DCFS process, from initial referral of a family through closing of a case. I think it will be very beneficial for all of us to better understand the role of DCFS as we work so closely with them.

I want to make you all aware of the Youth Mentor Program. This is also a program I coordinate for DCFS. Youth mentors work with youth who have open cases with DCFS. Some of these youth are in foster care, others remain at home with their families. These are typically young people who could benefit from a good role model outside of what is provided in their homes. A youth mentor must be 21 years of age or older, pass a Criminal and Child Abuse Background Check, have good references, and meet some training expectations. A mentor works with each youth assigned to them up to 30 hours per month. Youth mentors are paid $9.25/hour when working with a youth one-on-one and $6.25/hour when taking more than one youth on an activity.

If you know anyone who meets the above qualifications and loves working with youth, please have them contact me for more information.