Shawn Hosford


B.A., The Evergreen State College, 1985


The Invisible Parenting Handbook by Shawn Hosford


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Biographical Note

In my senior year at Evergreen I started Traditional Picnics, a gift delivery business. Four years later, I sold the business for a nice profit. Following this, after a year of selling machine parts for others, I started an aircraft parts representation firm that I grew for thirteen years. During that time my husband and I foster parented a seven-year-old boy for two years. Once he left our home I felt compelled to work hard to help the foster care system and ended up creating a foster parent training agency. I developed, built up, and ran FosStars for four years. After that venture, which ultimately joined another well-established organization, it was back into the aircraft parts business for me. While selling parts for PRO CNC (my current position), and in-between all my other activities (gardening, skiing, long urban park walks, dinners with friends and loved ones, networking), I wrote the story that I promised our daughter when she was a c hild. The book features the journey we followed as we learned and grew as parents.

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The Invisible Parenting Handbook

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A Few Last Thoughts, Kiddo

We taught you that each person on this planet is special. They have a place at the table and something to share. We also taught you to be cautious of those who are harmful and bury their light so deep that even they can’t find it. Know that not everyone will want a place at your table, no matter how beautifully it’s set, even with all the yummy food you’ll provide. Keep looking for the gifts in other people, and stay open to all they have to teach you.

As you grow older, you’ll realize that you have more questions than answers. I’m very clear that we didn’t do everything right or perfect and there are many other ways to parent than the ways we chose. There’s no need for you to be right or perfect all the time. But I do trust you’ll be open to finding your parenting path (once again, should you choose this road) by listening to the wisdom of others, trusting your heart, and cherishing your child for who he or she is. I also know you’ll be an absolutely open, conscious, and consistent parent. Above all else, I hope you’ve enjoyed receiving The Invisible Parenting Handbook and reminiscing about your childhood.

It’s been our pleasure and honor to be your parents, Carly. There’s no greater joy for us than to see what an amazing human being you’ve become. I look forward to watching all the ways you’ll touch others in this world, and I imagine I’ll get to continue to watch you volunteering for causes you’re passionate about and initiating positive changes the world so desperately needs.

I have hope that your generation will more than make up for the failings of past generations, most recently, of course, mine. I’ve been inspired watching you and your friends “Make Great Choices.” I trust that your generation will find that greed, power, and unethical behavior can only make everyone’s lives meaningless. And I trust you’ll explore your options, search for the truth, and love and cherish this planet we’re so lucky to live on. Thanks to you and your friends for living such authentic lives. And thank you, Carly, for teaching us as much as I believe we’ve taught you.

Love, Mom and Dad

How Did Evergreen Help You in Your Career?

Evergreen taught me that anything was possible for a dyslectic woman, especially reading a book a week for the seminars. I learned that neither fear of success nor of failure would motivate me one way or the other. I had to make my own successes in life.