Friday, December 18, 2009


This week, I received my first copies of Living Sensationally translated into German... It is a really beautiful book, and it tickles me to see the words I wrote, but in another language!

Very early in the release of Living Sensationally, I participated in an interview for a German radio station, and I think this led to the interest in the book for local use. I am very grateful to the sequence of people that made this possible. "Leben mit den Sinnen"!!

Friday, December 11, 2009


I am almost at the end of my work day. I am going to dinner with friends, and then to see a play that promises to be very entertaining.

I love going to the theater because of the way that plays 'PLAY' with our senses. The set design invites us to imagine sensations that we are not actually having, but by tapping our memory of the sensory experiences, we become more involved with the actors and the story. For example, scenes of winter outside the windows of a cozy home remind us of our personal experiences with heat and cold. We might shiver or take our jackets off as we watch. Scenes about cooking might remind us of smells or tastes we have experienced, bringing thos memories into our experience.

I also love the experience the actors, director and others create for me. I have learned that I have sensory and emotional experiences whether the play is wonderful or marginal; engaging our minds to use what we experience in a new way can never be a bad thing.

Think about what ignites your senses; do something that taps your sensory memories this weekend. I will see you back here to find out about them.

Thursday, December 10, 2009


I have been talking for about a year now about making sure that people become aware of their sensory patterns, so aware, so commonly aware of them, that the 4 types [seeker, avoider, bystander, sensor] become common everyday language.

I keep searching for ways to accomplish my goal. Lots of great steps toward this goal have happened, including all the activities recorded on this blog. Now I think another action I can take is to write some information and suggestions about how to be a SENSATIONAL human being on this blog.

So, for today, think about the perfect situation for yourself to get some work done... Is it quiet, or do you need some background sounds? What position do you like your body to be in?--some people like to stand, lounge, while others are happy to sit. Each of these positions gives you different sensory input about your body, which is why certain positions are more satisfying for you. Do you stay still or move around a lot? Do you need a clear space, or can you have lots of things around and still concentrate? Do you have food or snacks or something to chew on while working? Every one of these choices generates sensory experiences for you! Make a SENSATIONAL work profile, and pay attention to your ability to concentrate, be productive and feel satisfied with your work.

Seekers are most likely to have a busy environment and change around a lot.
Avoiders are most likely to create an isolated work situation with very little distractions.
Sensors are most likely to create a tidy organized work space, and are challenged if the space is not just right.
Bystanders are the most easy going workers, and can focus even in busy environments because they are not distracted by other things.

Enjoy the sensations that make your work satisfying.

Friday, July 17, 2009

AMC Theatres has a program called "Sensory Friendly Films", which provides a special showing time for selected movies so that families who have a member with autism can attend the movies as a family. They make adjustments to the lights and sound and to their moving around policies so everyone has fun!

here is the link so you can see if they have a showing in your area. If not, just ask them to start the program.

I just talked to the Director, and he said that others are also accessing these showings. for example, older folks that think the movies are too loud, and that enjoy the children having fun go to these showings too. Doing great community services is good for the whole community. THANKS AMC.

Monday, July 13, 2009

I got a great story from a mom who is also an occupational therapist [my profession], and she agreed to let me share her story as an illustration of the impact of sensory processing on everyday life.

I read with interest the article on "Sensory Sensitivities of Gifted Children" (Gere, Capps, Mitchell & Grubbs, 2009) and your response (Dunn, 2009).

It has been interesting to see students who are gifted in music and also oversensitive to auditory input. Put them in aconcert in high school (obviously with training) and they are wonderful. My own daughter hated sudden, loud noises, (ie. sirens and fireworks) to the point where we avoided parades and fourth of July celebrations. However, she is gifted musically, and at the age of 17 months sang "Happy Birthday" to a friend, with correct pitch and words. She is currently studying classical voice. I would love to hear about the positives of people who are considered "non-typical". I think that too often children are put in the non-typical box and we forget that that unusual ways of perceiving, thinking and problem solving gives birth to new ideas.

What this person is expressing is that it is our uniqueness, our quirkiness that gives rise to innovation and creativity. We are on the wrong track if we think we have to 'normalize' these aspects of people's traits because we risk losing other very helpful aspects of their behavior as well. In the article referenced above, the authors cited the gifted literature, which hypothesizes that children’s sensory sensitivities might contribute to both their superior problem solving abilities and their challenges with social interactions.

It is not surprising that children who are great musically could also be sensitive to sounds. Perhaps that is how they notice the little nuances that others miss... we cannot indict one manifestation of their trait [i.e., their sensitivity], while hailing another aspect of it [i.e., their intense musical talent]. We have to find ways for the musical talent to flourish because of the sensitivity to details, while diminishing the impact of that same auditory sensitivity on other aspects of everyday life. We need to consider the risk of diminishing the sensitivity on the superior abilities.

Friday, May 15, 2009

SEAL OF EXCELLENCE AWARD for Living Sensationally

The CHILDREN OF THE NEW EARTH online magazine is awarding Living Sensationally the SEAL OF EXCELLENCE AWARD in their July 2009 publication. I am very honored to have this recognition! Here is their criteria:

"The CNE SEAL OF EXCELLENCE is an award that is created and awarded by
the Children of the New Earth Magazine management team to recognize
products, books, and CD’s that, in our opinion, are outstanding in
their field. Unlike other internationally recognized ‘Seals of Approval’, The CNE
SEAL OF EXCELLENCE is not dependent upon any monetary gain in terms of
advertising or sponsorship. Rather, it is awarded on a totally
impartial basis by consensus of the CNE Senior Management based on the
following criteria:
* It must meet a particularly high standard in terms of the
emotional support and practical guidance it offers parents, teachers,
and caregivers
* It must nurture, safeguard and support children’s bodies, minds,
and spirits, and enrich their sense of self
* It fosters an attitude of kindness and compassion for all life and nature
* It empowers children to achieve their highest potential
* It helps children develop resilience and strong social and
emotional skills
* It acknowledges and provides practical solutions for ways in
which parents and society can begin to recognize and address both the
special gifts as well the emotional, physical, and educational
challenges that are unique to today’s evolving generation of children
* It must provide parents with real, solid, practical and above
all truthful information assistance, insights and/or tools to parent
their children lovingly, supportively and holistically and to the
highest possible standard."

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


This month, Living Sensationally came out in paperback! We picked new cover art, which reflects the springtime and gives readers a different set of sensations to experience from the hard cover art. I am so delighted to have both options available to people so they can have the one that meets their needs.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

LIVING SENSATIONALLY tips for the week

Instead of New Year's Resolutions, how about we resolve to live the best way possible?

One of the ways to live the best you possibly can, is by celebrating your sensory patterns. so here are some ideas in the realm of WARDROBES:
Think about the characteristics of your favorite outfit from a sensory point of view. These characteristics can guide you to other clothing choices, and also provide support for getting rid of the things that dont completely honor your sensory patterns. When you are completely comfortable and confident in your clothing, you exude light, optimism, courage and happiness.

SEEKERS: consider the weight of your clothing; do you like layers? heavy jewelry? fitted pieces? all of these choices provide extra input throughout the day, and may be helpful to meeting your seeking needs.

AVOIDERS: since you may have a sparse wardrobe, consider what sensory experiences cause you to include or discard items. If you can identify EXACTLY what is acceptable to you, then you can be ready when something wears out and you need to replace it.

SENSORS: You are very picky about your wardrobe; write down what the precise characteristics are, so you start thinking about the sensory experiences that you must include in your clothing choices. When you are mindful of these characteristics, you are less likely to just cringe at an item, and more likely to say 'that is not a choice, because...'

BYSTANDERS: You may not pay much attention to your wardrobe. However, there are situations when your clothing tell a story about you. Get a friend to help you create entire outfits; take a picture of all the parts together, so you can recreate these outifts when you need to project a certain look.

Happy Dressing! You will look sensational!