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Entries in mmoms you should know (2)


A Go West Mom You Should Know: Leslie Lindsay of 'Speaking of Apraxia'

When Leslie Lindsay's daughter was diagnosed with childhood apraxia of speech five years ago, Lindsay threw herself into learning as much as possible about the neurologically-based motor-speech disorder. Now she's taken that research, as well as information gathered from speech-language pathologists, conferences and a support group, and written "Speaking of Apraxia: A Parent's Guide to Childhood Apraxia of Speech." It was just published this month.

Leslie Lindsay and her daughter Kate open a box containing Lindsay'snew book, "Speaking of Apraxia: A Parents' Guide to Childhood Apraxiaof Speech."Lindsay, 33, was a former child and adolescent psychiatric nurse at the Mayo Clinic. She's now a stay-at-home mom and writer who lives in the Fox Valley and blogs at leslie4kids. Her husband Jim is a senior researcher at the American Institute for Research; their daughters are Kate, almost 7, and Kelly, 5.

Read on to find out why we think Leslie Lindsay is a Go West Mom You Should Know.

Q. Can you tell me about "Speaking of Apraxia"? Why did you decide to write this book? What do you hope it accomplishes?

A. When my daughter Kate was diagnosed with childhood apraxia of speech (CAS) in 2007, I was completely dumbfounded.  Like most, I didn't know what CAS was -- or how to help  my daughter.  I began reading all I could on the disorder and became frustrated, discouraged, and yet wanting more -- as ironic as that seems!  The Internet is great, but you can really drive yourself nuts trying to read and decipher all the "hits" you get on a Google search.

I checked out really old-school speech pathology books from university libraries, attended conferences, interviewed SLPs (speech-language pathologists), facilitated my own apraxia group, "Small Talk: All AboutApraxia" consisting of parents of children with CAS.  I wanted to connect with others and help them on theirapraxia journey. Apraxia can be such an isolating diagnosis because not many kids have it.  As a parent, you are just sort of stumbling along.  The book is divided into five sections, which sort of mimic that of the five weeks my group met: 

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A Go West Mom You Should Know: Renee Ferguson

Renee Ferguson is a wonderful example of a woman who decided to "seize the day.” 

For 14 years, she worked part-time an an expert on the Butterball Turkey-Talk Line, helping people get through their “turkey traumas” as she put it. But she also had a career in marketing, putting together a series of freelance jobs that allowed her to spend time with her three growing children. 

Renee Ferguson of Geneva is the author of "Talk Turkey to Me."When one of her jobs suddenly disappeared, and with no other prospects on the near horizon, Ferguson finally sat down and started putting together the cookbook her friends and relatives had urged her to write for years. The result is “Talk Turkey to Me: A Good Time in the Kitchen Talking Turkey and All the Trimmings," which was a finalist for the National Indie Excellence Book Awards. She has appeared on the Food Network's “Takedown With Bobby Flay” and has been quoted in a variety of national publications.

Ferguson, 58, and her husband Johann raised their children in Glen Ellyn but moved to Geneva five years ago. She says two of their three children - Erin, 27; Dallas, 25; and Kyle, 23 - are fabulous cooks and jokes the other will never starve.

Ferguson and her husband got married within six months of meeting each other, and they’ve now been married 36 years. “I don’t know how I ever made such a good decision at such a young age. He’s the love of my life,” she says. 

Read on to find out more about Ferguson and why we think she’s a Go West Mom You Should Know.

Q. How did you become part of the Butterball Turkey-Talk Line?

A I have a home economics degree, and part of the requirement for being on the Butterball talk line was to be a home economist. So when the job opportunity came up, I interviewed and was selected. 

I worked there for 14 years, handling people’s turkey traumas. People would call in with lots of very good questions. Everyone has a question and everyone seems to have a story about a Thanksgiving trauma of their own - whether it’s that they forgot the bag of giblets inside or they didn’t know how long to thaw the turkey or that they’ve never cooked a turkey before and their in-laws are coming over and they want to cook the perfect bird.

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