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The Apple Tree: Raising 5 Kids With Disabilities and Remaining Sane Paperback – April 11, 2015
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About the Author
Professionally, in the field of blindness and rehabilitation for the past thirty-three years, Linda Petersen has established many programs for adults and children who are blind. In addition to her regular work as the Director of the Early Intervention Program for infants and toddlers who are blind, and the Director of the Independent Living for Elderly Federal Program, she has been the director of a summer camp for children who are blind, deaf/blind and multiply disabled which she established twenty-two years ago. Advocacy efforts include in participation in establishing legislation to mandate the vision screening of all children in the state, to establish a central agency for the provision of educational services to children who are blind, and to establish NEWSLINE, a newspaper reading service for the blind coordinated by the National Federation of the Blind. Having a BA in Social Work, and MA in Rehabilitation Counseling, she has completed additional advanced graduate work in Educational Psychology. Public speaking is an exciting passion of hers, regularly speaking and educating professionals statewide, regionally and nationally. In addition to being educational, her presentations are casual and humorous. Many state, regional and national awards hang on her office wall, including the Lions Clubs International’s prestigious Helen Keller Award. Despite her professional success, her family has priority. She has had to leave many an important meeting to tend to the special needs of her children, even to the point of keeping a “hospital bag” in my car containing all of the essentials for a long wait in an emergency room with one of the children. In her profession and in her life, she believes in full inclusion; that is, all individuals with disabilities can lead an active, happy and full life. Having a brother who is deaf/blind and raising five children with disabilities has enabled her to put my philosophy into practice with amazing results. Her children have not only survived, but also thrived. Happy endings DO exist, and the journey there is exciting!
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Top customer reviews
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"The Apple Tree" was the only book in my recent reading marathon (brought on by a period of unemployment!) which had me laughing out loud, and groaning at the many tough and embarrassing situations she has been put in. But more than anything, this was the only book that had me crying real tears for a prolonged period after it ended.
Linda is truly an inspiration! Not only has she made the lives of her husband, mother, brother and own son happy and successful, but she has transformed the likely terrible destinies of their four adopted children and the others whom they fostered along the way. I appreciated her honesty around taking time for herself to recharge and allow her to focus back on the children, and particularly loved the way she can see the funny side of almost every situation.
In our fast and furious world, Linda is a rare breed who understands that there is not a "one size fits all" approach to life. Everyone is different, for better or for worse, and everyone deserves the chance to be happy and successful. I can highly recommend this book as a lesson in being selfless and tolerant, and not to take life too seriously!
Curl up under a blanket by the fire and pass the time on a cold winter's night with this wonderful, inspiration book. It is proof of 1 Corinthians 13:8 "Love never fails."
Even if you have never loved a child with disabilities, this will take you inside the experience, fill you will love for them, and
bring you to tears of sadness, joy, and laughter. If you don't have a Kindle go on line and read her blog posts at www.raising5kidswithdisabilitiesandremaingsane.com