Celebrating Therapeutic Work: Spotlight and Giveaway on Play Clothes

I always love to support others doing amazing work, so today you are in for a treat. I’m excited to introduce a recreation therapist, Kim Shepard who is helping fellow clinicians spread the love of their work through Play Clothes.


Guest Blogger, Kim Shepard from Play Clothes 

I am a recreation therapist and inclusive play practitioner who happens to also enjoy design and art. I have my Master’s in Recreation Therapy through the School of Public Health at Indiana University and a large part of my experience comes through working in the therapeutic camp setting as well as providing holistic care for clients, working alongside and in collaboration with other therapeutic health professionals and educators. I am very passionate about the importance of inclusion, in that it is essential to the health, well-being, and progress of our society as a whole.

I currently work in the pediatric community setting at an inclusive play gym, where I am the operations manager. I also have a background working therapeutically with a wide range of children and adults, including camp, community, and clinical settings and with clients with physical and developmental disabilities, mental health and behavioral health needs. I am also a type one diabetic, which has played a crucial impact in my life, helping me feel invested in and empowered in the Spoonie community. I was also diagnosed as a child and have very important memories of a child life specialist teaching me to give shots on a teddy bear named Rufus. My husband is a counselor who also has experience working with children with autism, and we are both passionate about the vital importance of mental health and disability acceptance and inclusion. Overall, I feel like my life is just filled and directed by the power of inclusion, play, and empathy, which have shaped me both personally and professionally.

Play Clothes Collage

The Launch of Play Clothes 

Play Clothes is an independent design project of mine. It was started out of frustration at the fact that no one ever understood what I actually do for a living and the importance behind it. My first shirt design was on the definition of recreation therapy and thanks to the very positive response I received, things just blossomed from there. It leads to design shirts about other therapeutic fields, including child life, occupational therapy, speech therapy, physical therapy, pediatric nursing, art therapy, and much more.

Play, play-based learning, and inclusion are three of my biggest passions, and the therapeutic role of play—especially inclusive play—is my own personal soapbox that I could talk about for hours on end. Play Clothes gives me a way to speak out in visual design about those topics, and I have been so honored by the way that so many other healthcare, teaching, and therapeutic professionals have responded with excitement and enthusiasm.

All shirts are designed by me and then printed and distributed by bonfire.com, who I love supporting due to their utmost professionalism and friendliness, as well as the quality of their products and the sensory-friendly softness of their fabric. Currently, I have too many designs out there to list, but you can find more on my Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. I am always open to ideas about other designs and offer designs for groups, clinics, schools, and more at no cost other than the price of the shirts. Shirts have to have at least five buys in order to be printed, but this hasn’t been a large problem so far, but it does mean that word-of-mouth and social media are incredibly beneficial for Play Clothes’ continued success!

Play Clothes Giveaway.jpg

Win a t-shirt design of your choice. Choose one or more ways to enter:

1. Sign up for email notifications at Child Life Mommy and leave a comment below

2. Facebook: Follow Child Life Mommy, tag a friend and leave a comment on the post

3. Facebook: Follow Play Clothes and leave a comment about the giveaway

4. Twitter: Follow, Like and RT the post to @ChildLifeMommy and @clothes_play

5. Instagram: Follow @ChildLifeMommy & @PlayClothesIn, Like the post and tag a friend.

Good Luck! Winner will be chosen on 8/5/18. Shipped to residents in the U.S. and Canada.



Giveaway on Child Inspired Get Well Maps

I’m thrilled to have Christina Conners from Child Inspired back and sharing her amazing Get Well Maps with us. She is helping us to celebrate child life month by giving away The Deep Sea Adventure Get Well Map and Bundle

The Deep Sea Adventure Get Well Map and Bundle uses the beloved theme of seaside adventure, sea life and treasured activities in the surf & sand to encourage and motivate children facing medical challenges..

Using fun, developmentally appropriate techniques, Child Inspired Maps encourage and motivate children by visually illustrating their progression towards their goal (often of going home during a hospitalization). The Deep Sea Adventure Get Well Map includes a durable 12×18″ illustrated Map that can be easily transported and sanitized, a repositionable sticker & easy-to-use instructions in both English & Spanish for families and medical teams.

Take Me! Friendship Island is a beautiful children’s book filled with themes of compassion, hope and inclusion. Inspired by Ellie, a five-year old heart hero, educator Gail Mack authors and dedicates this book in an effort to benefit children receiving pediatric healthcare at Nemours A.I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, DE. Gail Mack and illustrator, Olivia Taylor, find further inspiration for this seaside theme in their hometown located in coastal Southern Delaware. Both a beautiful story and vivid watercolor illustrations make this a must-read with children of all ages.

Plus…The MATCHING SHELLS make a perfect, therapeutic companion to this fun, engaging set!

Child Inspired Giveaway

Choose one or more ways to enter:

1. Sign up for email notifications at ChildLifeMommy.com and leave comment below

2. Facebook: Follow Child Life Mommy and leave a comment on post

3. Facebook: Follow Child Inspired and leave a comment about the giveaway

4. Twitter: Follow, Like and RT the post to @ChildLifeMommy

5. Instagram: Follow @ChildLifeMommy, Like and tag a friend in the post

Good Luck! Winner will be chosen 3/11/17

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Child Inspired: Spotlight and Giveaway


Child Inspired: Spotlight and Giveaway

We have another fantastic guest spotlight and giveaway for you today! I am happy to introduce Christina a mother, Occupational Therapist and creator of Child Inspired.

Child Inspired Logo Master

CHILD INSPIRED creates innovative tools to ease anxieties during childhood hospitalizations and medical recoveries. We feature “Visual Get Well Maps” that can be individualized with a child’s name and photos in order to help a child visualize their progress and goals, and create a keepsake that illustrates their perseverance. Our child-friendly illustrations include a repositionable sticker that is moved along a path by the medical team to reflect the child’s progress, and themed “neutral zones” designed to avoid backward movement along the path during setbacks or unexpected procedures. Our passion is to enhance age-appropriate, child-centered communication between children and their medical teams, and ease a difficult road to recovery when children and families are facing childhood illness, disease or injury.

As an Occupational Therapist and mother of 2 children, I created Child Inspired after the hospitalization of my 5 year-old son, Andrew, merged these two primary roles in my life. My passion to think creatively and utilize multi-sensory strategies to enhance the ability of others to reach their greatest potential is both the foundation and driving force of Child Inspired.

When our son Andrew faced a sudden onset of life-threatening illness, he required advanced life support until his medical condition could be stabilized. It took days before his medical team could give us any indication of his prognosis, of how long his hospitalization might last, or what his road ahead would look like.


Since young children have limited capacities to understand time concepts in their regular daily environments (much less hospital settings where days and nights blur together), I was overwhelmed with anxiety of how I would answer his plea, “Mommy, When can I go home?!” Recognizing that auditory processing is extremely limited during stressful events, and that visual aids can enhance comprehension, I asked a friend to make an interactive, multi-sensory tool to improve his understanding of the process. So the concept of the Visual Get Well Map was born of my intense desire to communicate to our son that he was improving and would get home. Even with our homemade version, we began to see that it became a valuable communication tool between our son and his medical team. His medical team began engaging him in “child friendly” dialogue regarding his progress by moving his car along his road during their daily rounding. And when his car finally reached the finish line, we felt overwhelming joy because there truly is NO PLACE LIKE HOME for a child and family spending prolonged time in a hospital setting. With our son’s medical crisis etched in our hearts, and the help of a wonderful artist to bring our concept to fruition, Child Inspired began printing illustrated Visual Get Well Maps on a firm, durable 12×18” surface that can be used easily at the bedside, cleaned/sanitized quickly, and has directions printed directly on the back for family and health care professional reference.

Cropped Visual Maps1 Croppped Visual Maps 2

I hope you might take a few minutes to learn more about our product, and it how it might benefit the children and families that you serve. Please visit www.ourchildinspired.com for more information regarding Child Inspired, or to place an order.

  • Priced at $19.95. Bulk pricing is available (please fill out an inquiry on the Contact Tab of our website)
  • Short in-service trainings can be provided upon request
  • Customization and/or modifications can be made to tailor our product to the specific patient population or program needs of your facility
  • Portion of proceeds benefits Ronald McDonald House Charities

Thank you for your time, and the amazing work you do to better the health and lives of the children and families you serve!!!


Click here to contact Christina or follow on Facebook


We will be giving away 4 Visual Get Well Maps in our giveaway! The themes are the Road Home, Princess Path, Journey Home and Trail Home.

Choose one or more ways to enter:

1. Sign up for email notifications at ChildLifeMommy.com and leave comment below

2. Facebook: Follow Child Life Mommy and leave a comment on post

3. Facebook: Follow Child Inspired and leave a comment about the giveaway

4. Twitter: Follow, Like and RT the post to @ChildLifeMommy

5. Instagram: Follow @ChildLifeMommy, Like and tag a friend in the post

Good Luck! Winner will be chosen 6/25/15