Friday, October 5, 2007

An Interview with Jacquelyn Mitchard Brought to You by Hanes

Remember the moving novel The Deep End of the Ocean by Jacquelyn Mitchard? I will NEVER forget it. It was one that haunted me for a long time after I read it. So very powerful!

Well, not only is Mitchard a talented writer, she's also a mom of seven! shared with me an exclusive interview (under "Parent News") with Mitchard and now I am sharing it with all of you!

Some of Mitchard's tips will be used in an upcoming review I'll have on the adorable...and affordable...costumes you can make using Hanes t-shirts! (Click on "Make Fun Crafts" towards the left to see the costumes and instructions) Genius!

Here is the Q & A interview from Hanes and Mitchard:

Jacquelyn Mitchard rose to fame as the author of the first book in Oprah Winfrey’s Book Club -- the number one New York Times bestselling novel, The Deep End of the Ocean. She subsequently wrote five other bestselling novels and most recently published ‘Still Summer’ (released in August 2007).

Mitchard is also a syndicated columnist for Tribune Media Services, a contributing editor for Wondertime magazine and a blogger on her personal Web site. She now lives in Wisconsin with her husband and their seven children.

On Halloween...

One of the joys of living in a small town in a small state is that the kids don’t have to go trick-or-treating on a Sunday afternoon two weeks before the actual date. We go out when the cold wind rattles the skeletal tree limbs which makes for an authentic and ghoulishly delightful Halloween night. This also, however, means trick-or-treating becomes not just a race for the biggest chocolate bars, but a race against hypothermia.

The main issue with dressing kids who’ve grown up in the great up-north, is that they often ignore coats until the temperature is less than 20* F. So, on the night that kids actually have an excuse not to wear a coat (as coats aren’t very scary), it’s the layers underneath a costume that count the most – at least to this mom.

On Halloween costumes...

Simple costumes work best. Kids love to have the chance to wear one outfit to school and another costume for a party or Halloween night. Hanes lets us mix and match – after all, it’s not a big sacrifice to transform a tee-shirt into a tux! They can have two or three different looks for a fraction of what store-bought costumes would cost for a fun and easy Halloween.

On issues concerning moms these days...

We’re all wondering about rationing TV and computer time, and about the hours of homework and huge numbers of books our kids carry all day long. It seems that our children are little executives with day books and lunch dates, and that the blissful unplanned space of childhood is being squeezed out of existence. We worry that media idols are encouraging the idea that it’s okay to grow up too fast and become a parent too young.

On advice for parents...

Stay calm and do more listening than talking in a crisis. Most things that you fear come to pass if you have the patience to wait out a child’s “phase” rather than rush to panic. This goes for anything from tantrums to tattoos.

On how the Internet is affecting parenting...

It’s [the Internet] very important to ME. I can look up anything from a series of symptoms and find out if my child needs rest and juice or antibiotics. I can get ideas for creative projects and play. I can talk with other moms about their own experiences and issues with toddlers and teens, which is very reassuring.

On favorite sites..., amazon, eToys,, MomSense, About and Mom’s CafĂ© on MySpace.

On dressing kids affordably...

Since I have seven children, affordable quality is a must-have. Clothes from Hanes are stylish and comfortable and I love that I’m able to rely on Hanes, for my children, my husband and myself, for comfortable, well-made stylish clothes that don’t give out after numerous washings.

On what’s going on and coming up...

Writing and working with to help spread the word about the brand’s new site just for moms and kids! My novel, “Still Summer” about four friends fighting to survive after a pleasure cruise turns into a nightmare was just published, as well as my second young adult novel, “All We Know of Heaven.”

I’ll be writing two more young adult mysteries and I HOPE they’ll become an enduring series! I continue to raise funds for MS, which affects the life of my best friend from childhood and am teaching a fiction seminary this spring in Fiji!

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