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Top 20 Gifts for Kids and Adults with ADHD

Posted on November 26, 2014


Copy of Santa Terry copy

Uh oh. It’s…holiday time and not always an easy time if you are a shopper with ADHD.

Relax. Avoid the mobs…the crowded parking lots, the noise, lights…it can all be too much.  Why not relax at home and do all of your holiday shopping at YOUR convenience?

CLICK HERE to see my hand-picked Top 20 Gifts for Kids and Adults with ADHD and lots of these items are on sale TODAY.

Happy Holidays!

PS: Become a member of The Queens of Distraction at 20%+ off membership until Dec. 1- register today HERE!



ADD Goes to the Airport

Posted on November 18, 2014

flustered woman


I just got back from the CHADD Conference in Chicago, where I presented on two topics: one for women with ADHD and one for parents with ADHD raising kids with ADHD.

I’ve now been working in the field of ADHD in one way or another for nearly 20 years. I’ve written two books. I’ve given many presentations locally and all around the country. I’ve been a guest on NPR, been interviewed for The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Redbook, and more. I have a zillion websites on ADHD (my main ones are at and

So wouldn’t you think that I’d have a pretty good handle on my own ADD? If you could see the clutter on my desk from where I’m sitting right this minute, you’d probably say- what? What’s up with this? How can you tell ME how to mange clutter when yours is pretty out of control?

Well, I have a secret for you. Most of us ADD “experts” still struggle with clutter, procrastination, time management and all the rest. But there’s a difference: for the most part, we’ve moved on from hanging our heads in shame over it. We’ve learned coping methods. We’ve learned to forgive ourselves and realize…hey…we will get to the piles (or whatever) and until then, we aren’t going to call ourselves lazy, unfit or incapable. I’m telling you this because we ALL have our ADD “moments”- even those of us who have ADD and are psychotherapists, coaches, writers, etc.

Let me tell you a little story about how my ADD blew up in my face only three days ago.

When flying home from the Chicago CHADD conference to my home in the Detroit area, I had a horrific ADD experience at O’Hare Airport. Lately, I haven’t been asked to remove my coat, shoes, belt, phone, laptop, etc. while flying- I just get swept through the scanner and go on my way.

On Sunday, however, the security regime changed and I was told to take off my shoes and coat before heading into the x-ray machine thingie. That right there threw me off. But I did as I was told and once through the machine, the TSA fellow with the short black hair berated me loudly for having left my laptop in its case. I apologized profusely as he grabbed the bag and put it through the scanner again, while I rushed to grab my coat and pull on my shoes so I could get the heck out of there, red-faced and all. Yessiree!

Ms. ADD expert had her head hanging real good as others glared at me for holding up the line. I didn’t even have a wailing toddler to blame it on.

Dashing to my gate, which as usual was the very last one, ¼ mile away, I grabbed some lunch, bought the latest People Magazine with some big celebrity on the cover that I’d never seen before and found a cozy (?) spot where I could wait until it was time to board. While munching on the cardboard, I mean, turkey sandwich, I figured I’d check my email. After all, I had about 20 minutes and you know what 20 minutes is like with nothing to do. It’s hell!

I pulled out my computer cord, plugged it in, then grabbed the case and to my horror, realized it was empty. The TSA guy must have put the computer in a bin instead of back in its case! That meant one of two things: either it was stolen or…it was stolen.

I ran the ¼ mile back to security check, but as expected, they couldn’t find my MacBook Pro (that’s a code name for VERY EXPENSIVE LAPTOP). But the fellow with the wide grin and kind green eyes offered to look at the video to see if he could track what happened to it. Mr. Kind Green Eyes spotted it! And traced it to the security room that- alas- was locked up for the weekend.

Long story short, when I got home, I arranged for security to UPS the laptop to me, though it’ll be days before I know for sure if Mr. Kind Green Eyes really did solve the problem for me.

So what’s the point of the story? We ALL have our ADD moments. I SHOULD have checked my computer case to make sure my laptop was, indeed, in there. I SHOULD have removed it from the case to begin with. I SHOULD NOT have eaten a cardboard turkey sandwich before sprinting ¼ mile to find my beloved computer.

But the biggest lesson of all? ADD will always be with me. And without those crazy moments, hey…what would I have to write about?

How about you? What crazy ADD moment can you share? What happened and how did you get through it? Post your stories in the Comment section below.



ADD Planning Guide for Thanksgiving

Posted on November 03, 2014



‘Tis the season to start thinking about the upcoming holidays. If you get all worked up like I do, then you’ll love this! I’m excited to share with you a guest article written by my friend and colleague, ADD coach Rhonda Pawlan, MS. Enjoy!

ADD Planning Guide for Thanksgiving

By Rhonda Pawlan, MS (ADD Coach)

If you have ADD, and have decided to offer a Thanksgiving feast at your home this year, here is the way to survive the holiday – and possibly, even enjoy it.

Keep two things in mind — organization is the key, and things do not need to be perfect. Now, let’s move forward with some organizational tips that will help you get on task, and stay on task.

Start with three To Do lists — your House Preparation list, your Shopping List, and finally, the ever important Food Preparation list. Ready to get started?

House Preparation List:

Everything you need to do to get your house ready for guests goes here. This list includes things like – cleaning, straightening, perhaps setting up an additional table or getting out some folding chairs. In addition, you can get out all the dishes and silverware, (whether china or plastic), your serving pieces, and even your cooking utensils, pots, etc.

The best thing about the House Preparation List, is that these are all things you can get done in advance. Even a week in advance is not too soon to start. With so much to do for Thanksgiving, the more you can do ahead of time, the better. And as always, I recommend you assign dates in your calendar for the various tasks.

Shopping List:

Start by deciding what you’d like to serve, with the suggestion that you make reasonable choices. For instance, even though Thanksgiving brings eating to mind, it’s not necessary to go overboard. Are five side dishes truly necessary? Choose what you think appeals to most people., and stick with it. And while I’m on the topic of food choices, consider asking some of your guests to bring something along for the dinner. A side dish, a vegetable, a salad, etc., will make your load a little lighter. Be specific when asking guests to contribute to the meal, so you’ll know exactly what items are coming through the front door.

Your Shopping List may also include, any additional items you need. Some examples might be –- paper plates, napkins, a large tin in which to cook the turkey. Give yourself time to work on the shopping list, in order to avoid last minute trips to the grocery store.

Meal Preparation List:

Write a list of all the food you plan to serve and cook. Keep this list in your kitchen at all times, so you can refer to it – both while cooking, and when serving. The Meal Preparation List should also include the times you need to start preparing each dish. You can only juggle so many things, and ovens, at once. Don’t overload.. Again, make reasonable decisions and allow extra time.   Whatever dishes can be prepared in advance of Thanksgiving, be sure to do.

It all comes down to planning, keeping things as simple as possible, and doing as much as possible in advance.

Things to Remember:

Tasks often take longer than you think they will, so build in extra time for everything you do.

Assign tasks to your spouse and children. You don’t need to do everything yourself.

Neither your house nor the meal must be P-E-R-F-E-K-T. You won’t be able to enjoy family and friends if you’re frazzled. The holiday is not for impressing people, but for enjoying them.

If you follow this plan, all should turn out reasonably well. Or, you could tear up your lists, hire a cleaning crew for your house, and order the entire meal from a grocery or restaurant. Whatever you decide, I wish you a most Happy Thanksgiving!

Rhonda Pawlan, MS is a Board Certified Coach, specializing in ADHD.  She coaches adults and students around the country, helping them to get on track and reach their goals. Contast Rhonda at or

** Do you have a holiday tip to share? Or a funny or horror story? Please share in the Comment section below **