Spa Services Update!

We are thrilled to announce that Generations Spa is working with Happy Mama Conference and Retreat to provide several special half-hour services to our mamas at a rate of $25 each.

Services are available Friday afternoon and from 2:30 to 5:30 Saturday afternoon. To make an appointment for any of these services, please call Generations Spa at  (919) 361-9140 and tell them you are part of the Happy Mama weekend. They are keeping these hours open for us until June 15 – after June 15 they may have open appointments but they will no longer be reserved for Happy Mama Attendees.

Generations is in nearby Brier Creek shopping center – not on site at the hotel. If you do not have a car, the Embassy Suites is happy to provide free transportation via shuttle. We were unable to find on-site aestheticians but we are certain that the professionals at Generations and the other spas in the Brier Creek area will help you feel relaxed and pampered!

½ hour services are:

Revitalizing Eye Treatment

Ear Candling

Make Up Application



Shampoo & Blow dry (flat ironing additional)

On demand facial

You are welcome to make an appointment for any other service Generations Spa offers as well. Other spas and salons in the area are listed below. We do not have any special arrangements with these other spas so be sure to make your appointment as soon as possible! All are in the Brier Creek Shopping area, Raleigh.

Massage Envy

Skin Sense Day Spa

Planet Beach Spa


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May 24, 2013parentalunitsnews
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First In Families is a North Carolina organization that supports people with developmental disabilities and their families to create the lives they want now and in the future. First In Families is organized by county. Please see the list below for contact information from participating First In Families regional offices and contact the office indicated to see if you qualify for a scholarship to attend the Happy Mama Conference and Retreat.

If you have any questions or live in an area that isn’t listed in the contact information please email us at happymamaretreat@gmail.com. We will be happy to call the First In Families office in your area to see if they want to participate.

UPDATE 5/1: Some First in Families Offices have spent all their funding for the fiscal year. Please contact your local FIF office to find out if they are still able to fund scholarships!

IMPORTANT: If you are hoping to attend the Happy Mama Conference and Retreat through a scholarship from First In Families, e-mail us at Happy Mama Retreat to reserve your spot. We’ll need your name, phone number, e-mail address, and home address. If we do not receive confirmation from First In Families within 1 month of your initial contact with us your reservation will be lost.

ALSO IMPORTANT: Happy Mama is honoring the early bird registration rate of $145 throughout registration for the conference and retreat.



First In Family Offices:

In Durham county, please call or email Wanda Brown (919-724-3423) at Durham First In Families. For an application click HERE.

In Orange, Person, or Chatham county, please call or email Pete Mora (919-251-8368, ext. 107) at Central Carolina First In Families. For an application click HERE.

In Mecklenburg County, please contact Constance Finch (cfinch@inreachnc.org) or at 704.536.6661 ext 437), First in Families of Mecklenburg county.  Below are the First In Families of Mecklenburg (FIFMeck) forms that the qualifying consumers may use to apply for FIFMeck funds. To prevent a delay in the processing of their FIF Applications, they need to insure that they submit all required documentation with their applications, i.e., proof of developmental disability for family member in the same household, i.e., IEP, PCP; proof of address for the individual with the DD and proof of address for individual applying for funds; proof of total net household income; proof of registration for the Happy Mama Conference & Retreat ($145 maximum) and proof of hotel registration ($100 maximum). FIF Applications may be faxed, mailed or hand-delivered.

In New Hanover, Brunswick, and Pender counties, please contact Regina Johnson (rjohnson@arcnc.org), 910-350-2737, at First in Families Southeastern NC.

In Wake county, please call or email Rachel Pack, (919-571-8092 ext.416) Resource Coordinator for First In Families of Wake County.

In Anson, Harnett, Hoke, Lee, Montgomery, Moore, Randolph and Richmond counties, please contact Beverly Davis at First In Families of the Sandhills, at 910-692-8272 or arcmoorebm@embarqmail.com

In Alamance, Alexander, Beaufort, Berite, Bladen, Buncombe, Burke, Caldwell, Camden, Carteret, Caswell, Catawba, Chowan, Columbus, Craven, Currituck, Dar, Duplin, Edgecombe, Gates, Greene, Guilford, Henderson, Hertford, Hyde, Iredell, Jones, Lenoir, Madison, Martin, McDowell, Mithcell, Nash, Northhampton, Onslow, Pamlico, Pasquotank, Perquimans, Person, Polk, Robeson, Rockingham, Rutherford, Sampson, Scotland, Surry, Transylvania, Tyrell, Washington, Wayne, Wilson, and Yancy counties, plase contact Krysta Gougler at the FIFNC Lifeline Project:  919-251-8368 ext. 103 or email her at krysta@fifnc.org
Download the application packet for FIFNC Lifeline by clicking HERE.

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Registration now OPEN!

The time has come. The major event details are finalized and we are ready to take your registrations. Click over to the Registration page and sign up now!

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January 20, 2013parentalunitsnews

HMR 2013 Agenda if Finalized

That’s right ladies! We have found three superb speakers on Mom Self-Care and Special Needs Advocacy. We’ve re-designed the conference portion with shorter presentations and more breaks. We’ve planned a spa just for Happy Mamas, onsite at the hotel, offering affordable mini-services. We’ve planned a fun cocktail and heavy hors d’oeuvres social. We’ve spread it all out over two days so you have lots of time to get to know each other.

We have a final agenda for the Happy Mama Conference & Retreat and now it’s time for you to have a look.

We know you are going to want to sign up right away. Just give us another day or two and we’ll have that ready as well.


2013 Agenda

Friday, July 12, 2013

3:00 pm- ? Arrival at hotel and room check-in
5:00 pm – 6:30 pm Gather together in the Lobby/Bar during the Embassy Suites’ Manager’s Reception
6:30 pm Break for dinner on your own with new friends

Saturday, July 13, 2013

6:30 am – 8:45 am Free breakfast for those staying at Embassy Suites or breakfast on your own
8:30 am – 9:00 am Conference Registration outside Meeting Room C/D
9:00 am – 9:30 am Welcome Address and Get-to-Know-You ExercisesBy Adrienne Bashista Owner, DRT Press & Co-Editor, Easy to Love But Hard to Raise
9:30 am – 9:40 am Break
9:40 am – 10:00 am The Language of Self-CareBy Vikki Spencer, The Mom Whisperer©
10:00 am – 10:20 am Break
10:20 am – 10:40 am Mindfulness PresentationBy TBD
10:40 am – 10:50 am Break
10:50 am – 11:10 am The Mama Tantrum as a Motivational Too: Motivating Your Unmotivated Self by Margit Crane, M.A., M.S., M.Ed.
11:15 am – 12 pm Breakout Discussion Groups
12:00 pm – 1:00 pm Buffet Lunch
1:00 pm – 1:40 pm Practical Strategies for Effective Student AdvocacyBy Robert Tudisco
1:40 pm – 1:50 pm Break
1:50 pm – 2:10 pm Taking the Crazy Out of Family Gatheringsby Margit Crane, M.A., M.S., M.Ed.
2:30 pm – 5:30 pm Mini-Spa Services & Deep Relaxation & Rejuvenation Yoga Class
*May require additional cost for what you participate in, but cost will be low if not covered by sponsors
6:30 pm – 9:30 pm Dinner Social with Cash Bar

Sunday, July 14, 2013

6:30 am – 9:30 am Free breakfast for those staying at Embassy Suites or breakfast on your own
9:30 am – 9:45 am Welcome Back, Announcements, Etc.
9:45 am – 10:05 am Funding Your Self-CareBy Vikki, The Mom Whisperer©
10:05 am -10:15 am Break
10:15 am – 10:45 am Breakout Discussion Groups
10:45 am – 11:00 am Break
11:00 am – 11:30 am Wrap-Up, Door Prizes & Attendee Survey
  Feel free to get together and hang out at the pool or go grab a delicious lunch or take advantage of full-service Spas in the area.

 (*Agenda subject to minor changes.)


VikkiSpencer_103F_5x7Vikki Spencer The Mom Whisperer©For the past 10 years, Vikki, a.k.a. The Mom Whisperer, has inspired women from every stage in motherhood to be their best. Her emphasis is on creating lives and families that flow with passion and purpose. Through her own experience helping her child overcome OCD and Tourette’s, she understands the fight against guilt to care for oneself amidst crisis and care giving.In her articles and coaching, she calls women to utilize their emotional, mental, and spiritual resources to learn about themselves and their “wiring” – and then to care for and influence their families.Vikki has a master’s degree in Education and was professionally trained by the Institute for Life Coach Training, an International Coaching Federation accredited institution. She is also a published writer for Woman’s Day, World Vision, and other publications and has contributed to numerous books for moms, including one on post-partum depression. You can find The Mom Whisperer on Facebook and at http://TheMomWhisperer.com.
MargitCraneMargit Crane, M.A., M.S., M.Ed. Author, Trainer, and Executive-Functions Coach Margit Crane is passionately devoted to making growing up much easier for AD/HD kids and the stressed-out parents who love them! “You have power that you haven’t tapped into yet,” she says encouragingly. A former teacher and school counselor for 30 years, Margit is the author of the Mom’s Choice Award® winner, How to Train Your Parents in 6½ Days for tweens, teens & parents. Margit Crane is the owner of two businesses that celebrate the distracted family: “Gifted With ADD” and the newer “Good-Enough Parenting™.” You can find both on Facebook and Twitter and at GiftedWithADD.com & Good-EnoughParenting.com. 
robtudiscoRobert M. Tudisco Executive Director of the Edge FoundationRobert Tudisco and is Executive Director of the Edge Foundation and a past member of the National Board of Directors of Children and Adults with Attention Deficit Disorder (CHADD). He is a current member, and a past chair of CHADD’s Public Policy Committee. Robert is also a former Vice President of the Attention Deficit Disorder Association (ADDA). Since his diagnosis with ADHD, he has researched and written extensively on the subject of practical coping mechanisms and systems for adults with ADHD. He is a frequent resource for the media about ADHD and disability advocacy and the over representation of individuals with ADHD and co-occurring conditions in the juvenile/criminal justice systems compared to that in the general population. He has been published in ATTENTION® Magazine and regularly contributes as a columnist on adult, parenting and legal issues in addition to sitting on its Editorial Advisory Board. He is also the expert legal columnist for ADDitude Magazine. He is also a practicing attorney and an adult diagnosed with ADHD.


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January 17, 2013parentalunitsnews
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2013 Location and Dates are Set!

Hey ladies! It’s official!

Drum roll please!

Happy Mama Conference & Retreat 2013
Embassy Suites Brier Creek
Raleigh, North Carolina
July 12-14, 2013

Location & Lodging

This is a beautiful hotel whose location is convenient to shopping and restaurants, but also to the airport.

The Embassy Suites Raleigh-Durham Airport/Brier Creek hotel is located just three miles from Raleigh-Durham International Airport (RDU), in an ideal location for any travelers arriving or departing by plane. The shopping and dining venues of Brier Creek are just minutes from the hotel, as are the attractions of downtown Raleigh and Durham. Accommodations at this [hotel] include two-room suites and a selection of king non-suites… [see the discounted rates for HMR2013 below]. All accommodations are contemporary with bamboo hardwood floors. Stay connected with high-speed internet access and HDTVs. Relax in the space of a two-room suite with a separate bedroom and living room.

Plunge into the heated indoor swimming pool or stay active in the fitness center… Enjoy a stroll around the beautiful hotel atrium at the nightly Manager’s Reception* with complimentary drinks and snacks, and begin each day with a complimentary cooked-to-order breakfast. The hotel’s Flying Spoons café offers Starbucks coffee and a bistro-style menu for lunch and dinner.

This hotel is beautiful and allows us to have the conference, retreat and lodging all in one building. {can I get a Woot! for Starbucks coffee on site too?!} There will be no need to have a car at the retreat this year. Visit the hotel’s full website for area attractions, including the large shopping center full of restaurants less than a mile away, Brier Creek Commons, and more details about the accommodations.

The HMR discount lodging rates are:

King Studio: $109/night
King 2-Room Suite: $119/night
Two Queen 2-Room Suite (great for sharing!): $129/night

Rates include free cooked-to-order breakfast and nightly Managers’ Social (i.e., free drink and snacks). Rates do NOT include  12.75% tax.

Conference & Retreat

Mark your calendars moms! This year promises to be even bigger and better than our inaugural conference last year, in 2012. We are planning more social time, mini-spa sessions on site, a get-to-know you at the outset late Friday afternoon, some fabulous speakers on self-care for moms and special needs advocacy, and maybe even some entertainment during our annual Saturday night Happy Mama Social with hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar.

You will receive two full meals, beverages and snacks during the conference segments, three great speakers, opportunity to have mini {read shorter and less expensive} spa services at the hotel, a lesson on mindfulness, yoga class Saturday morning, relaxing by the pool, and opportunity to socialize with dozens of moms who can relate to your special needs parenting journey. All of this, the entire weekend, for just $145 early bird rate (lodging, which includes breakfast and pool access) NOT included in conference rate). We are even looking into being able to allow attendees to make 3 monthly payments of $50 each for retreat registration — we want it to be easy for you to come and have fun with us!

Sign up to receive updates via email — we will be announcing the speakers and schedule very soon! Plan to be able to register and reserve your fun and informative weekend away by February 1.



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Planning for 2013 Underway

Adrienne and Penny are now hard at work planning the Happy Mama Conference & Retreat 2013.  The retreat will be again held in North Carolina in July (city to be determined) and include speakers on self-care and parenting a child with special needs, networking with other moms who live a similar journey, social time together, and spa opportunities.

We took the feedback from last year’s retreat to improve the 2013 Retreat. The speakers will be spread out over two days and we will have more social time. In light of those changes and being sure we are close to an airport, the conference will be $149 + lodging. Start saving now ladies — we want to see all of you there!

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December 22, 2012parentalunitsnews