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Are you a stressed-out, overwhelmed, overworked, tired and under-nurtured mother of a child with ADHD, ADD, OCD, SPD, PBD, FASD, Autism, PDD, or any number of other brain-based differences that lead people to judge your parenting, make you second-guess yourself, challenge your relationships, and keep you up at night worrying incessantly about your child?

If so, look no further for a soft place to land — the Happy Mama Retreat has been created especially for you!

“It was really good for my soul. There aren’t words to describe the sense of comfort that comes from moms who ‘get it’ on every level.”

 “This weekend I went on a life-changing adventure. Friday we were strangers, and by Sunday we were family. I walked away with some new sisters, amazing tools to help me manage this beautiful life, and guidance on how to push through when it seems impossible. I absolutely can’t wait for next year.” — Katie B.

“The validation that I’m not alone was amazing!”

“Such an amazing weekend! The chance to meet other special needs moms and make new friends was incredible. I took a lot away from these few days, but the biggest is knowing I have these women to lean on who ‘get it.'” — Molly

Relax

Mamas get very little time for themselves. They’re always on alert and never seem to get a chance to relax. Plenty of time for relaxation and respite is set aside during the Happy Mama Retreat, ensuring that you’ll get time to yourself to relax and recharge.

Learn Self-Care

You must take care of yourself in order to do your best for family. Our speakers educate you on the importance of self-care and how to fit it in your busy life, and motivate and inspire you to take care of mama.

Feel Less Alone

Raising a child with invisible behavioral disorders is isolating. At the Retreat, you’ll meet dozens of mamas on a similar parenting journey, who ‘”get” what it’s like to raise a child with developmental and behavioral challenges. You’ll be part of our Tribe.

You deserve to be happy, mama!

The Happy Mama Retreat is a weekend away for moms of children with special needs, created by moms of children with special needs. Not just a relaxing weekend, not just an educational conference, not just a moms-only weekend away — it’s all three rolled into one.

I want to help you gain community with other mothers who share your questions, concerns, worries, and fears. I want to provide education to help you advocate for your child and yourself, and to give you the tools to re-discover your own happiness. I want to nurture you with a beautiful setting and fun, relaxing activities. 

 “Connecting with other special needs mamas who truly ‘get it’ was uplifting, empowering and exactly what I needed at this point in my parenting journey. Now I have a tribe across the country that will uplift me through the days ahead.” — Deb

 “An amazing group of strong, intelligent, loving, caring, and just plain fun women. A much-needed respite and lesson to help me be the best mom I can be. Thank you ladies for an amazing weekend!” — Shannon F.

 “I’m so grateful for my new tribe and the opportunity to be surrounded by such beauty and love.” — Shannon S.

“I felt like part of a community here. I’ll be back!”

“I’ve been looking forward to this weekend for almost a whole year. I can’t wait to be back with this mama tribe to replenish, connect, and learn.” — Melissa H.

Our Venue


Our Speakers

Joy Cadelina, OTD, OTR/L

Pediatric Occupational Therapist Lifespan Occupational Coach

Sarah Wayland, Ph.D.

Special Needs Care Navigator Certified Relationship Development Intervention (RDI®) Consultant Parent Coach Internationally Acclaimed Speaker

Beckye Barnes

Founding Board Member of Palmetto Achievement Center for Excellence (PACE) Academy charter school

Our Agenda

FRIDAY, JUNE 10th

3:00 PM Arrival and Relaxation
5:00 – 9:00 PM
Welcome Reception & Fireside Chat

Sponsored By: 
Madam Clutterbuckets
Neurodiverse Universe

SATURDAY, JUNE 11th

8:30 AM Breakfast
9:30 AM Welcome

10:00 AM Sarah Wayland, Ph.D.
Grief: Understanding Yourself
While Loving Your Child

11:15 AM BREAK
11:30 AM Breakout Groups
12:00 PM LUNCH
Lunch Sponsored By:
Mightier

1:15 PM Joy Cadelina, OTD, OTR/L
Sensory This.. Sensory That

2:30 PM Breakout Groups

4:00 PM Private Event in Downtown Asheville
Presented By: 
Daddy Mac’s Down Home Dive

SUNDAY, JUNE 12th

8:30 AM Breakfast
Breakfast Sponsored By:
Key Autism Services

9:30 AM Becky Barnes
10:30 AM Break & Wrap Up
12:00 PM LUNCH

Premier Sponsors

Blissful Sponsors

2022 Event Sponsors

Past Sponsors

FAQ

What is the address of the retreat location?

The Crowne Plaza Resort Asheville, 1 Resort Drive, Asheville, NC. The closest airport is Asheville, NC, which is a 20 minute drive from the retreat location. Shuttle options are available.

How will COVID-19 affect this year's retreat?

The retreat will not be cancelled due to COVID-19. You may wish to purchase trip insurance in the event you are unable to travel due to COVID-19 exposure or symptoms.

Vaccines are not mandated, but strongly recommended. Masks will be optional at the retreat venue, but may be required by local merchants in town. Please self test three days prior to travel to ensure the safety of all attendees.

Can the caterer handle food allergies or food preferences, like being a vegetarian?

Yes, within reason. The menus are carefully crafted to hopefully meet the needs of all our mamas. The caterer will accommodate all food allergies and requests. If in doubt, please contact us. We want you to have something delicious to eat!

Can I get a registration refund if I cannot attend?

I wish I could say yes to this, but we cannot provide refunds to this years event. I highly recommend trip insurance that can be purchased through a variety of agencies. 

Do you offer scholarships to the event?

We offer the Tanji D. Dewberry Happy Mama Scholarship each year, which is funded by public donations and the raffle we hold during each retreat.

Is alcohol allowed?

If you’re staying onsite, you are welcome to bring adult beverages to drink in your rooms. We hold a wine social each year as well. Of course, you’re expected to drink responsibly and not ruin the enjoyment of other guests, both in our group and at our venue.

How do I sponsor the Happy Mama Conference and Retreat?

Contact us. We are actively looking for sponsors for the conference at many different levels.

Can you do a Happy Mama Retreat where I live?

That would be wonderful, wouldn’t it? Our goal is to keep building these retreats, see how it goes, and take it from there.

Don't miss out. Grab your spot now!

Want more parenting tools & strategies to reduce the struggles?

MORE HELP IS AVAILABLE — WATCH MY FREE VIDEO SERIES

You've tried so much of the advice out there, and yet, your child and your family are still struggling.

In this free video series, you'll get quick and simple tips and mindset shifts to create improvement fast. I cover the following parenting challenges: Yelling Too Much, Wishing Life Could be Easier for You and Your Child, Emotional Dysregulation & Poor Self-Regulation, Feeling Stuck, Helpless, and Hopeless, Feeling Like Chaos & ADHD/Autism Are Hijacking Your Family, and Constantly Battling with Your Child.

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