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Articles in Exceptional Lives, Mandy Cowley, Kirsten Raby, Joy Holden, Ellen Mecholsky and May Guides

Is This Our New Normal?

by Joy Holden on

Barry, oh Barry. You arrived late and then left without making much of an impression. And we are grateful! Your tardiness and lack of effort were quite welcome to those of us still suffering from storm shock. Let me just say, on behalf of all the 201... Read full article

Defined by Faith

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During the 22nd week of pregnancy, Beau and Sara Dantin discovered that their baby girl, Isabel, had a brain abnormality.... Read full article

A Quiet World

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Meet this Exceptional Life.... Read full article

The Motivation Struggle

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I think back on my own life and all of the things I thought I wanted to do…and you know what? The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. So, how in the world do I motivate my kid to stick to something when I’m not sure I can do that for myself?... Read full article

Filling Hearts with Kindness, Starting with Her Own

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Kindness is the keyword for eight-year-old Tiva Thyssen, and she’s involved in several efforts to spread it. Specifically, since losing her older brother Traeh to suicide in 2019, Tiva works to bring awareness to and prevent bullying and suicide... Read full article



Life with Down Syndrome: Shouting His Worth

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When he was born seven weeks before his due date, prematurity seemed to be the biggest obstacle facing Gideon Schroeder. His parents, Marianne and Greg, were completely surprised when Gideon was diagnosed with Down Syndrome.... Read full article

A Bright Future After Darker Times

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You will never meet a nicer girl than Carissa Murray. The 11-year-old is sweet, kind and caring, with an inquisitive mind and an ear for languages and music. She also has faced unique medical challenges throughout her young life. ... Read full article

Play! Create! Imagine! (and then Clean. It. Up.)

by Ellen Mecholsky on

I walk a very fine line between wanting my children to play and create and imagine...and wanting/NEEDING a tidy house to function at my best. I need order around me to feel relaxed and productive. If I wake up in the morning and I am greeted by a tra... Read full article

Going Viral: Teen Connects Through Poetry and TikTok Videos

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Although he didn’t speak until he was five, Cohen Swain is finding his voice. The 15-year-old is on the autism spectrum and has written a poem, Hold On, I’m Trying, that has gone viral. ... Read full article

Rolling with the Good Times: Navigating Baton Rouge’s Mardi Gras with Kids

by Ellen Mecholsky on

When my husband and I moved to Baton Rouge, we had absolutely no idea about Mardi Gras. I mean, sure, we had heard of “Fat Tuesday” and had the vague sense that beads were involved, but the Louisiana Mardi Gras EXPERIENCE was a complete unknown. That... Read full article

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