May 30, 2016
Respect and pray on nature background

With Humility Comes Clarity

I received an email from a parent and the following words impacted me: “Our daughter made it through the weekend without any major incidents, largely because Tirae was there.” Something akin to a sneak attack ensued with my emotions. I knew Leeann and had a great relationship with her. At first I felt warm and fuzzy about the email. As I reread that sentence, my smile vanished and I felt uneasy; what I initially took as praise slowly turned into a cold knot in the pit of my stomach. I searched for Kristi, one of the therapists who work with […]
May 17, 2016
Kanarra creek slot canyon trail in Zion national park

Using Nature as Therapy

For as long as history has been recorded, human beings have felt a deep connection to the land and world around them. This connection has been a normal part of children’s lives as they grow, and many of us can remember running through fields and catching fireflies or exploring a nearby creek. For some of us summer vacation meant a return to nature and escaping a stifling classroom. Unfortunately, this has been changing over the last couple of decades. Climate controlled homes, video games, electronics, phones, computers and other factors play into this. Some students who come to Heritage come […]
May 9, 2016
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Just Hold On

In 1998 my husband and I decided to take our two oldest sons and their cousins on a rafting trip down the Colorado River. As we “knew a guy,” we borrowed life vests, rafts, and chose to not hire a guide—after all, who needs a guide? The river only flows one direction. With confidence born of the ignorant and thrifty, we were on our way. It didn’t take us long to realize the raft our sons were in, was holding air, and our raft was holding water. We bailed and planned to pull to shore as soon as we got […]
May 5, 2016
Smiling happy teenage girl sitting in front of her parents

The “Golden Ticket” to Support & Perspective

“What am I supposed to do about my son?” “Why is this so hard? “Who can I talk to?” Parent conference weekend just wrapped up at Heritage, which was a marvelous opportunity for parents to rub shoulders with others in their same boat.  After a few hours spent together, learning and discussing this intensely emotional path, one father summed up the parent experience by saying “It’s like we’ve been given a golden ticket to an exclusive club – one we didn’t know existed.”  The chuckles from the rest of the parents in the room made it clear that this description hit […]
April 27, 2016
Teenage girl rolling her eyes in front of angry parents

Principle Centered Parenting, Finding Common Ground

I was recently working with a set of parents who were frustrated with each other because of how the other was parenting. The father was very task oriented and was continually “hounding” (according to mom) their son to clean his room, do his homework, get off the computer, to do something with his life besides playing video games, etc. The father quickly shot back that mother was too permissive and didn’t follow through with consequences, that she was too lenient. Each of the parents looked at me hoping I would take their side and prove to the other who was […]
April 21, 2016
Family Playing Cards In Kitchen

It’s About Time! 10 Ways You Can Develop A Relationship With Your Teen.

Life is busy! There is not enough time in the day to do everything that we want and need to do.  Trying to strengthen your relationship with your teen may be something you want to do but you just don’t feel you have the time for.  What if you made a paradigm shift that allowed you to look at every experience with your teen as an opportunity to build trust and strengthen that relationship? This new view would make even the simple things become valuable opportunities.   You can use the time you do have in the best way possible. Here […]
April 5, 2016
Young woman wearing headphones and making notes

10 Sensory Processing Interventions

In presentations on the subject of sensory processing in the treatment of ASD, I’ve found that people love trying out sensory interventions in their own lives or lives of their families. If the sensory issues are serious enough, I recommend reaching out to an occupational therapist for an assessment and a professional sensory modulation program. Here are 10 interventions Heritage students love that you may want to try:   Noise Cancelling Headphones: Some people are overwhelmed by the sensation of ambient background noise in their environment. Noise cancelling headphones are a favorite of many students. You can achieve the same […]
March 23, 2016
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Easing Symptoms of ADHD through Equine Therapy

In today’s day and age it isn’t uncommon to be distracted by media, technology, busy schedules, and the hustle and bustle of a fast-paced world. For some it is difficult to escape from these distractions and to avoid the effects they may have. Millions of people in today’s society are living with a disorder that makes it difficult to focus and to control impulses. This disorder is called attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and it can be a challenging disorder to live with. According to the Centers for Disease Control, the prevalence of ADHD today is rising at an alarming rate. The […]
March 14, 2016
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Peers Academy

Building Social Strengths through Awareness, Role-playing and Reinforcement Think back to your teenage years…what pops into your mind? Friends, school, budding romance, hanging out, feeling awkward, dating, erratic emotions, confusion, beginning independence, and the list could go on. For those individuals without mental health issues, the teenage years are challenging, but add a mental health issue and all these issues become overwhelming! At Heritage we specialize in identifying these unique issues and help create a pathway of learning and encouragement through our therapeutic framework. One main element in this therapeutic framework is known as our Peers Academy program. PEERS stands for […]
March 8, 2016
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Talking to Your Teens About Sex

Over the years working with adolescents and their families I have found that many times people find themselves in situations they are not prepared for.  As parents we want to protect and help our children grow up safe and smart. We want them to understand how the world works and be prepared for what life will bring to each of them. And yet, sometimes we shy away from certain topics because it is more comfortable for us not to have hard conversations. The human mind is amazing. Adolescents go through rapid changes during a short amount of time. Perhaps it […]

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