#081 Natalie and Cindy: How to Homeschool

fasd success show Sep 18, 2021
 Are you a homeschooler? Ever thought about homeschooling? What about after school is finished? Have you thought about what the future holds for your kids/teens/adults? This episode covers school and launching or transitioning our kids into adulthood.

 Natalie Vecchione and Cindy LaJoy are both homeschool moms, who realized their teens, with FASD, needed alternative homeschool paths for meaningful futures. Through entrepreneurship and apprenticeship, these moms prepared their teens with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) to move forward with confidence, hope, and a set of practical life and job skills.

Natalie Vecchione is an FASD parent advocate and homeschooling mom to two. Natalie turned her family’s unique challenges and journey with FASD from career reinventing into a calling when she and her husband co-founded FASD Hope in 2020. FASD Hope is a podcast, website, and a place for awareness, information, and inspiration for those people whose lives...

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#080 Dr Raja Mukherjee: What Happens When We Never Give Up on FASD

fasd success show Sep 12, 2021

Do you often feel alone as a caregiver? Like you are hitting a brick wall or blowing into the wind when trying to get professionals on board?  In this episode, you will hear that sometimes professionals experience the same. The last time I spoke to today’s guest, Dr. Raja Mukherjee, was five years ago. There was next to nothing for FASD in the United Kingdom. Today I check in to find out where they are now. 

Dr. Mukherjee started the first NHS-based specialist Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders behavioural clinic and since then has seen hundreds of cases for a specialist second opinion. 

He completed his Ph.D. in Fetal Alcohol Syndrome in 2014. He has also acted as an invited advisor to the BMA board of science, The Department of Health, and the World Health Organisation about FASD. Dr. Mukherjee also gave evidence to the first All Party Parliamentary Group on FASD at the House...
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#079 Audrey McFarlane: FASD Month, Advocacy and Strategies

fasd success show Sep 04, 2021


I love when we bring back guests for an update! I love it, even more, when we have breaking news! More on that later. My guest today, Audrey McFarlane, was my first guest back in January 2020. That episode is in the Top 3 of most listened. It isn’t surprising because she is the Executive Director of the Canada FASD Research Network. Audrey was also one of the founders of the Lakeland Centre for FASD, which in my opinion, is one of the best FASD organizations on the planet.  


Audrey has her finger on the pulse of what is happening not only in Canada but around the world. In this episode we talk about advocacy in other parts of the planet, get an update on what CanFASD has been up to since she was last on, as well as details on: 

  • CanFASD’s new membership program (and...
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#078 Emmaus Holder: An Epic FASD Journey Across America

fasd success show Aug 28, 2021


What is the craziest thing you have heard someone doing to raise awareness about FASD? How about riding across America by yourself, relying on the hospitality of strangers to feed you, give you a bed for the night and talk about FASD. That’s exactly what my guest today, Emmaus Holder, did. Not so crazy though, it was more an epic adventure or quest.  




Emmaus Holder is a student at UNC Chapel Hill studying Sociology and Music. He is the oldest of five and has two brothers with FASD. He enjoys music and playing any instrument he can get his hands on, even taking a set of harmonicas on his bike trip. After college, Emmaus hopes to study sociology or psychology, do more research, and teach about topics such as the social and emotional difficulties tied to psychological struggles such as FASD. 

I wanted to do a cycling tour and as the idea started to build, I wanted to put a purpose behind...

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#077 The importance of an FASD community

fasd success show Aug 22, 2021

Today’s episode is a little different. You may know about our free Facebook group called the Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Caregiver Success Support Group. Well, a group is only as successful as it is because of the moderators. They provide support for group members and maintain a safe atmosphere.

I thought it might be fun for listeners to “meet the mods” and hear a little bit about them, their families, and their thoughts on the importance of community.

We have four moderators: Laurie Anderson, Alex Duthie, Heather Flynn and Debbie Raymond.

As with all guests, I ask about their origin story. You will also find out:

  • who they support;
  • some of the symptoms of the disability that present in their loved ones; and
  • interventions or accommodations they use to support their success.

You will also learn (if you didn’t already know):

  • What role they play in the group;
  • The skills they bring as a moderator; and
  • Their thoughts on the importance of...
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#076 The Bofenkamps: An FASD Family Divided Then United 

fasd success show Aug 15, 2021

Sharing stories and journeys from caregivers is one of my favourite things to do. It provides insight and inspiration for others from people just like you who know what you are going through.

Today I chat with my good friend, and Caregiver Kickstart Coaching program alumni, Christine and her daughter Angelina. Not only has their relationship improved in the last year, since getting real about FASD, and working through their grief and loss, they have emerged the other side and are kicking some advocacy ass right now in their home state of Kansas. 

Christine Bofenkamp is a freelance graphic designer and writer. She and her husband are raising Angelina who was adopted through kinship care, or how Christine likes to say, "our family tree has a limb that curls right back in.” When not working or supporting her daughter with online studies, Christine is pushing to get her new home state of Kansas FASD informed. She is building a...

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#075 Wine Mom Culture and FASD Prevention

fasd success show Aug 08, 2021

Have you seen the memes pairing motherhood and alcohol? With phrases such as, 

  • Some people need a special occasion to have wine. I just needed to have a kid.  
  • What wine pairs well with my kids driving me absolutely insane? 
  • Mom tip: When they start to whine, open the bottle of wine. 

Since FAS was first named in 1973 there have been ongoing efforts directed at prevention. While turning to alcohol to celebrate or as a coping mechanism is not new, over the last 10 years a new segment of the population has emerged on social media: wine moms.

If you search the hashtag #winemom, or variations of it, on Instagram you will get over 84,000 hits. Should this be a concern?

Our two guests today – Dr. Kelly Harding and Lisa Whittingham – wanted to take a closer look and are here today to talk about what they discovered. 

Dr. Kelly Harding received her Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Rural and Northern Health from Laurentian University in...

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#074 Patti Crouch: FASD Life on the Denial Bus

fasd success show Jul 26, 2021

Are you like our guest today – riding the bus of denial? Knowing your loved one has FASD but then doubting the diagnosis or thinking it is something else when they “seem” to be functioning as a neurotypical.

It can be an exhausting journey. But if you want to learn how to get off that bus, and find success, join Patti Crouch and me for the next hour.  

Patti is the adoptive mother of three children.  She has no clue what to write in her bio because all she is trying to do is survive, do what is best for her children and not gain weight by all the chocolate and ice cream that she eats.   She does host the "The Denial Bus" podcast when she can, where she simply shares real and raw talk and interviews from parents and professionals that have a touch with adoption, trauma, and different needs kids.  Occasionally she is funny.  

If I’m going to be vulnerable,...

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#073 Dr. Aamena Kapasi: FASD and Therapy

fasd success show Jul 19, 2021

Emotional Regulation.

Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT).

Substance use treatment programs. 

How do these three subjects relate and what helps?

You will find out in today’s episode that will give you hope, inspiration and acknowledgement as a caregiver or individual with FASD. Your voices are heard. Your opinions and experiences do matter. Research is underway to find answers to create better supports, interventions and change outcomes. 

Dr. Aamena Kapasi is a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Alberta and is working on the Substance Use and Addictions in FASD Populations study for her postdoctoral research in partnership with CanFASD. Aamena completed her M.A in Counselling Psychology at the University of Western Ontario, and her Ph.D. in School and Clinical Child Psychology at the University of Alberta. Aamena has been researching FASD since 2013, focused on supports and...

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#072 Dr. Christie Petrenko: Changing the Story About FASD

fasd success show Jul 11, 2021

I’ve followed today’s guest on Twitter for a long time so was honoured when she agreed to come on the podcast and talk about what she is up to in Rochester – and it is a lot and extends beyond NY! If you want to know about tools to help you on your parenting journey you are going to want to tune in today!

Christie Petrenko, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist and researcher who has been conducting research with individuals with FASD since 2003. She completed her graduate training in San Diego in 2009 and is currently a faculty member at Mt. Hope Family Center, University of Rochester. Her research focuses on developing and evaluating interventions for people with FASD, including the use of mobile health technology to increase access to care. Dr. Petrenko also runs a multidisciplinary FASD clinic providing diagnostic, intervention, and family support services. 

In trying to teach people about FASD and improve awareness,...

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