Page 1

mendo lake FREE!

April 2017

Garden with Kids Tips for success

Egg Hunts 8 local events

Green Clean 17 hacks Save Big 10 ideas


Summer Camp & Fun Fair


westminster woods camp ministry




outdoor school








retreat center

When it comes to great pediatric care,

we’re in this together You don’t have to drive far to get great pediatric care. At Ukiah Valley Rural Health Center we’ve assembled an expert team of providers who are dedicated to providing exceptional quality of care. NOW ACCEPTING NEW PATIENTS PEDIATRICS

260 Hospital Drive | Suite 204 | Ukiah, CA


Brynn Stirling, MD

Andrew Coren,MD

Ida Harris, MD


260 Hospital Drive | Suite 209 | Ukiah, CA



1050 North State Street | Ukiah, CA


Noemi Doohan, MD

Tracy Burris, FNP

Lisa McCurley, FNP

April 2017

Every Issue

10 Features 10 Getting to Know Me How camp helps kids learn about themselves.

12 Growing Memories Plant a garden with your kids.

14 Green Clean Eco-friendly ways to get the job done—fast!

16 Small Changes, Big Savings Smart ways to cut costs.


Dear Reader


Bits and Pieces History Comes to Life Plant Joy Pinwheel Power Holy Bat Babble! Spring Is for Dancing Festival of Flowers


20 Crafting with Kids Egg-stra Special Easter

21 Cooking with Kids Creative with Cauliflower

22 Calendar of Events Blossoming Delight

30 Humor Break A as in Awkward


18 Confusion about Concussion Recognize the signs of this common injury.

23 Egg Craze Local spots for Easter fun.

8 4 MendoLakeFamilyLife

April 2017

Saving People Money Since 1936 ... that’s before there were shopping carts. GEICO has been serving up great car insurance and fantastic customer service for more than 75 years. Get a quote and see how much you could save today. | 1-800-947-AUTO | local office

Some discounts, coverages, payment plans and features are not available in all states or all GEICO companies. GEICO is a registered service mark of Government Employees Insurance Company, Washington, D.C. 20076; a Berkshire Hathaway Inc. subsidiary. © 2015 GEICO

Dear Reader


fter months of rain, the reappearance of the sun inspires us to make a fresh start. Giving the Sharon Gowan house a good scrub Publisher/Editor is a great way to begin. But who has the time? “Green Clean” (page 14) offers tips that will get your house spic-and-span lickety-split—and without the use of harsh chemicals.

One way to save money—and have fun with your kids—is to grow your own food. Now is the time to start a garden. “Growing Memories” (page 12) offers several ideas for involving children in everything from shopping for seeds to gathering the harvest.

While getting the house clean may seem like an impossible task, trimming your budget may feel even more out of reach. “Small Changes, Big Savings” (page 16) offers 10 practical ideas for keeping you in the black.

However you choose to spend your spring, we hope your family flowers.

Office Manager Patricia Ramos

Business Marketing

Gardening not your thing? See our Calendar of Events (page 22) for a slew of activities to do with your children. If you want Easter entertainment, check out “Egg Craze” (page 23) for local egg hunts.

Renee Nutcher Marie Anderson Natalie Bruzon

Features Editor Melissa Chianta

Production Manager

Join our Team Job opportunities for full-time, part-time and on call employment are currently available including: food service, custodial, grounds maintenance, technology, and paraprofessional/student learning support. Some positions offer flexible work hours, no weekends and time off for the summer and school holidays. There are opportunities to work at different school sites with all grade levels kindergarten through 12th grade. Applicants must be able to speak and read English proficiently.

Donna Bogener

Web and Social Media Jean Flint

Contributing Writers Sandra Gordon Holly Hester Lara Krupicka Janeen Lewis Kerrie McLoughlin Jill Morgenstern Karen Nochimowski Denise Morrison Yearian

Billing Jan Wasson-Smith

Publishing Office 134 Lystra Court, Suite A Santa Rosa, CA 95403 Tel (707) 586-9562 Fax (707) 586-9571

Apply online • • For job descriptions & information contact the Personnel Commission Lori Klee at 472-5042 • EOE 6 MendoLakeFamilyLife

April 2017

Now Accepting New Patients! Get first class primary medical, dental, and pediatrics & obstetrics care.

Our culture of caring has been with us for generations. Everyone is welcome.

Our providers take the time to give you the care you need.

We offer an abundance of healthcare resources in a state-of-the-art facility.

We accept Medi-Cal Medicare, and Partnership HealthPlan.

We do amazing things here every day.

Our enrollment counselors are here to help you get started. Call today!

Lake County Tribal Health Modern Medicine

Personalized Care

CALL TODAY! 707-533-2740 • 800-750-7181 • 359 Lakeport Blvd. Lakeport •

Bits & Pieces

History Comes to Life


Mathew Caine

et a theater production teach your family about local lore without ever cracking a book. See the players in the Mendocino County Museum Road Show animate the past with storytelling, music, dance, and humor. The show is coming to several venues in Mendocino County: April 7—Willits High School in Willits; April 8—Point Arena Theatre in Point Arena; April 15—Mendocino College in Ukiah; April 21—Anderson Valley Grange in Philo; and April 22—Cotton Auditorium in Fort Bragg. All shows begin at 7:30 p.m. There is an extra 2 p.m. show at Mendocino College in Ukiah on April 15. Tickets are $14–$20 and may be purchased at ticket-office.html or at the door. ¶

Plant Joy


t’s the time of year when you’ll see green thumbs turning up soil. But first, they might venture to the free Spring Fling Garden Party to pick up some plants or even some cool garden art. The annual outdoor fair, which will also feature music and food, will be held on April 8, 10 a.m.–4 p.m., in the Harbor Village Art Complex, which is nestled up against Clear Lake’s shores in Lucerne. ¶

Pinwheel Power


ids love pinwheels. For child abuse prevention advocates, the toy is a symbol of what childhood should be—happy. During April, Child Abuse Prevention Month, the Children’s Action Committee (CAC) of Mendocino County will be sponsoring a Pinwheels for Prevention Contest. The idea is to create a pinwheel “garden.” CAC will provide pinwheels and a sign; you add your own pinwheels and “plant” the collection in a yard, room, or window display or on a bulletin board. E-mail pictures of your final product to and be eligible to win a home-baked coffee cake and coffee/juice party for your office or classroom. CAC is encouraging participants to set up their gardens by the first week of April, so that they are visible through most of the month. In addition to the contest, CAC is also holding its annual Walkabout Ukiah on April 13, 10 a.m.–1 p.m. The walk begins and ends at the new office of Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), 340 North Main Street in Ukiah. For more information about the contest, call 489-7231; for the walk, call 489-5346. Out on the coast, the Mendocino Coast Child Abuse Prevention Council will host a First Friday Family Fun Night at the Town Hall in Fort Bragg on April 7, 5­–6:30 p.m. In Lake County, Lakeport will host the free Seventh Annual Children’s Festival and Advocacy Walk in Library Park on April 22, 10 a.m.–3 p.m. Kids are encouraged to dress up in superhero costumes for this event, which will feature crafts, food, music, and other entertainment. Register for the walk at ¶

8 MendoLakeFamilyLife

April 2017

Holy Bat Babble!


ver wondered what a bat sounds like? Get a chance to listen to their ultrasound chattering at Close Encounters of the Bat Kind. Rachael Long, a children’s author and farm advisor for the University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, will give a talk on bats, and then bring participants out in the field for a chance to listen to the creatures with a bat detector. Meanwhile, researcher Andrés Muñoz-Sáez will try to catch the tiny mammals so you can see them up close before he releases them into the night. The event, which is appropriate for ages 6 and up, happens on April 7, 7–9 p.m., at the Hopland Research and Extension Center in Hopland. Admission is $5–$10. Bring a flashlight. The evening is part of the center’s weekend Bioblitz, which includes these April 8 events: Spiders and Scorpions, 9 a.m.–noon, $5–$10, suitable for all ages; and California’s Venomous Animals: Identification, Symptomatology and First Aid, 4–6 p.m., $10, appropriate for ages 17 and up. See for more information. ¶

Spring Is for Dancing


he return of the sun and longer days motivate us to get moving. And the Spring Dance Festival is ready to inspire. Watch dancers young and old—they range in age from 7–84—perform everything from ballet and tap to hip-hop and clogging. See the show April 1 at 7 p.m. and April 2 at 2 p.m. at Soper Reese Theatre in Lakeport. Tickets are $10–$20 and are available at ¶

Festival of Flowers


here are so many wildflowers blooming everywhere, it may be impossible to see them all—unless you go to the free Anderson Valley Unity Club Garden Section’s Wildflower Show. The comprehensive exhibit will feature every variety of flower now blossoming in Mendocino County. Curious about a bloom you found along the roadside or on the trail? Bring it along and a team of plant I.D. experts will help you find its name. If you want to take home a little piece of the beauty you see at the show, flowers and shrubs will be available for purchase. The event will be held on April 22–23, 10 a.m.–4 p.m., in June Hall at the Mendocino County Fairgrounds in Boonville. In conjunction with the Wildflower Show, the Anderson Valley Goat Festival will be held on April 22, 10 a.m.–6 p.m., at the Mendocino County Fairgrounds. Learn how to make cheese, kefir, and yogurt from goat’s milk; see a costumed-goat parade; eat a bowl of birria (a Mexican stew); and listen to live music. Admission to the festival and workshops is free. See for more information. ¶

April 2017

MendoLakeFamilyLife 9

hired them have known them since they were small, occasionally see my kids outside of camp, and definitely know their strengths and weaknesses. 3. Independence When my daughter went off to college, I was certain she could operate without me at least for a time. She already had and so had

Getting to Know Me 7 Ways Sleep-Away Camp Is Great for Kids By Jill Morgenstern


ne of the great luxuries of my teaching career was spending summertime with my children. My kids took field trips as part of their everyday lives, spending the lazy days of summer in museums as often as swimming pools. But as my children grew, I always forfeited some of this special season to sleep-away camp.

The benefits of camp go far beyond a simple vacation for Mom and Dad. While it might be nice to have a break from parenting duties, there are many ways camp can help children grow: 1. Exploration Kids get access to a smorgasbord of activities that would be nearly impossible to explore at home. Although there are some camps that specialize in certain areas, most offer kids chances to participate in a wide variety of experiences. As a kid, I loved riflery but hated archery. 10 MendoLakeFamilyLife

I would never have known that had it not been for camp. 2. Leadership As campers grow older, they can focus on the activities they enjoy most and eventually help teach them to younger participants. When I first sent my kids to camp, I researched the establishment’s hiring practices to ensure I was sending them somewhere safe. I was told that the camp had to do very little in the way of getting to know their hires: Most of the counselors were former campers. Now that my older kids are on staff, I know what they mean. The people who

Camp makes learning painless, fun even. my son. The transition to college is a big one no matter what, but children who have been to camp have the advantage that they’ve successfully been away from home for extended periods of time. The best camps offer children increasing independence with enough supervision to maintain the children’s safety. 4. Values The truly great thing about camp is that it encourages independence while supporting the parents’ ideals. When my kids were in elementary school, I was a single parent. I relied heavily on my family and community to help me. Camp was part of that community, reinforcing the lessons I tried to teach my children at home. And every time I hear someone say that my son or daughter is a “good kid,” I know that it is in part because their camp helped me raise them. Not only that, but camp makes learning painless, fun even. Finding a camp that reinforces your values may be as easy as choosing one that reflects your religious beliefs, or other factors may come into play. Often

April 2017

camps offer shorter school-year programming (such as a family weekend over spring break) so that you can get to know the camp before summer arrives. 5. The Great Outdoors Hiking, biking, swimming, or even boating or horseback riding might be on the camp agenda. These can be new experiences for children who


Every time I hear someone say that my son or daughter is a “good kid,” I know that it is in part because their camp helped me raise them. spend a lot of time indoors, or they can reinforce the love kids already have for these activities. 6. Community, Bonding, Lifelong Friends Last year, as I delivered my daughter to camp, we were all treated to a great surprise as one camp alumni proposed to another. Romantic interests aside, when my daughter visits new places, it is often her camp friends she looks up. 7. Time Unplugged Time at camp allows kids relief from keeping up with their virtual world, be it friendly or dramatic. It fosters real life relationships. For some children, especially those who have had difficult online relationships, camp can be a welcome respite. ¶ Jill Morgenstern is a wife, mother to four, and teacher. She has 13 years of teaching experience and a master’s degree in teaching reading. She writes at

Lower Lake Elem. Pomo School Burns Valley School East Lake School

April 11, 9 am-1 pm April 12, 8 am-1 pm April 13, 8:30 am-12 pm April 24, 11 am-2:30 pm

Please bring all required documents pertaining to enrollment:

1. Completed Enrollment Packet If you have any questions, 2. Child’s Birth Certificate please call the Welcome 3. Current Immunization Records Center at 994-0900 (4 Polio, 5 DTP, 3 Hepatitis B, 2 MMR, 1 Varicella) 4. Proof of Physical Address (Utility Bill or Rental Receipt) 5. Report of Health Examination for School entry, signed by doctor 6. Oral Health Assessment Form, signed by dentist Please be advised that only complete packets will be accepted. Appointments may be available for dental and physical exams at: Clearlake Family Health Center at 15230 Lake Shore Drive in Clearlake - (707) 995-4500 Konocti Wellness Center at 9430 Lake Street in Lower Lake – (707) 995-5630

*Children who are turning 5, born between September 2, 2012 and December 2, 2012, are eligible for Transitional Kindergarten.* April 2017

MendoLakeFamilyLife 11

can make the entire garden a compost pile in the off-season, and if you like you can leave a section for composting year-round. Use appropriate tools. Make sure you have kid-size tools available for your budding gardener to keep her or him interested. For Small Hands

Growing Memories I

Gardening with Kids

By Kerrie McLoughlin

’ll never forget the first time I picked a beautiful, ripe, red tomato that I helped grow. I had watered and weeded the plant with love, and I was so proud of that tomato. And, because I wasn’t interested in gardening when I was a kid, this memorable gardening experience happened the summer I turned 40! 12 MendoLakeFamilyLife

This made me determined to share the joy of gardening with my own kids. I’m already learning that gardening alongside your kids provides valuable opportunities for them to learn, to get some exercise and fresh air, and to spend some time connecting with you. Check out these tips and ideas for gardening success, as well as a few reasons why gardening is one cool hobby.

Be eco-friendly. There’s nothing greener than growing your own food. Composting is another fun, green aspect of gardening because kids get to toss “trash” into the garden (egg shells, coffee grounds, fruit and vegetable shavings and rinds, etc.). You

Gardening alongside your kids provides valuable opportunities for them to learn, to get some exercise and fresh air, and to spend some time connecting with you. ( offers child-size gardening tools, such as gloves, shovels, watering cans, kneeling pads, small buckets for weeds, small aprons and totes for tools, and more. Teach responsibility. Consider planting most of the plot as a family garden, but save one entire section for your children’s own garden and make them responsible for it. If they don’t fall in love with gardening, give them an allowance for chores, such as watering and weed pulling. And be sure to relax your own standards. For instance, who cares if the rows are not planted perfectly? Decorate. Spiff up plant markers with the kids. Make stepping-stones using a kit. We have a lattice screen that my husband cut and the kids painted to make a short fence to keep animals out of the garden. Educate. How much will it cost to buy enough tomato plants to fill half

April 2017

of our space? How many feet by how many feet is our garden, and how many different things can I plant in it? Could we plant an ABC garden—one plant for each letter in the alphabet—if we have room for 26 small plants? Eat up. Have a garden-to-table pizza party where the toppings come from your own garden. Learn how to can your goodies at so you can save them for another day, and give some as holiday gifts. Can fruits and vegetables as-is or doctor them up to make salsa, pie filling, jam—get creative. Learn about insects. Which bugs are bad (Japanese beetles) and which are beneficial? Which plants attract butterflies (hint: wild plants)? Buy some ladybugs,

let them loose, and see how long they stay to eat up aphids. Head to, search “insects,” and have fun reading about different bugs and the work they do. Save space. Try square-foot gardening (, which is a great system for beginners

There’s nothing greener than growing your own food. that saves time, work, water, and money. You can start as small as 1’x1’ and grow from there. It’s on a raised-bed system, so weeds are kept to a minimum, and you can even bring in your small garden if a frost is on the horizon. Or think up by

growing pole beans or gourds so you can plant more stuff below. Grow herbs in a pot inside. And if you have no backyard, community gardens are all the rage these days. Visit to locate one near you or learn how to start one. Go seed shopping. Take the kids along to pick out seeds at the garden store or spend an afternoon poring over a seed catalog before making final decisions on what to plant. Their faces will light up when they get to pick green beans for dinner or grab some mint for their lemonade. Soft lamb’s ear, fragrant lavender, and basil make a great addition to a fruit and veggie garden. ¶ Kerrie McLoughlin is the mom of five budding gardeners. Check out their progress at


ADVENTURE AWAITS YOU Toxic Stress: Applying Research to Practice


Learn to identify what toxic stress is, describe its impact on the community & evaluate how we can work together to effectively address this important issue.

Summer Programs Start in July REGISTER NOW

Wednesday April 26: 9 am–4:30 pm

The Brick Hall, 16374 Main St., Lower Lake FREE Registration: 289-4110 or 994-0669 For more info contact Ana Santana at 289-4110 or


crafts, nature education, challenge course, horses, swimming, archery, backpacking & beginning outdoor living skills. Includes round trip transportation to camp from Ukiah.

April 2017

MendoLakeFamilyLife 13

Green Clean

Bathroom 6. Disinfect the toilet by sprinkling baking powder in the bowl. Scrub the bowl and under the rim with a toilet brush at night before going to bed. Pour in a cup of white vinegar causing a foaming action. While you sleep, let the vinegar and baking soda do the work! Flush in the morning.

17 Nontoxic Ways to Get the House Spic-and-Span

7. Keep mildew from growing in a clean shower by wiping it down with a dry hand towel after each use, saving hours of scrubbing later.

By Janeen Lewis


hat if the microwave cleaned itself, or the shower never grew mold, or stains disappeared from clothing in the spring air? The following green-cleaning hacks deliver the look and fresh feeling of a spic-and-span house without harsh chemicals or hard work. In fact, some of these tricks are so effortless, parents may find that they can actually relax and enjoy some self-care time! At the very least, there will be more hands to do the work: Since there are no caustic cleaners, children can help with the chores. Either way, spring cleaning will be a breeze.

Make dusting easier by using a microfiber mitt. For a dirty shower, mix equal parts white vinegar and dishwashing liquid. Use a sponge to gently scrub the shower with the mixture, then rinse. (Don’t use vinegar on marble or natural stone.) 8. Hate mildew on your plastic shower curtain liner? Wash it in the gentle cycle of your washing machine on warm. Then hang it up to dry. To keep mildew from growing back, spray the liner with equal parts of water and vinegar.

Kitchen 1. Remove dried-on food particles from the microwave without scrubbing. Cut a lemon in half and put both halves in a microwave- safe bowl with half a cup of water. Heat for five minutes. When time is up, wait 15 minutes with the microwave door shut. Open and wipe with a dry cloth. Baked-on food will slide right off.

3. Make a stainless steel sink sparkle by sprinkling baking soda in it. Gently scrub with a sponge, then rinse away. Soak dishrags in white vinegar and place in your sink and on the faucets. Wait 15 minutes then wipe out the sink. The vinegar will remove water spots and leave the sink shiny. 4. Line the bottom of the kitchen garbage can with newspaper to soak up spills and catch food scraps.

2. Disinfect the garbage disposal by sprinkling with baking soda, adding warm water, and gently scrubbing the rubber insert with a toothbrush. Rinse. Toss frozen vinegar cubes down the sink and, with the water on, grind the ice in the disposal.

9. Clean crusty bathroom faucets by soaking cleaning rags with white vinegar. Wrap the rags around the faucets and wait 30 minutes. Scrub hardened water deposits away gently with a toothbrush and rinse.

5. Love smoothies but hate cleaning the blender? Put warm water and a few drops of dish liquid in the dirty blender. With the lid on, turn on blender. Dump the dirty water, rinse, and presto! You’re done.

Floors 10. Add one-half cup of white vinegar to half a gallon warm water to mop your kitchen floor. Don’t like the smell of vinegar? Add a few drops of essential oil to the water. Again, don’t

14 MendoLakeFamilyLife

April 2017

use vinegar on natural stone or marble, and test an inconspicuous area before mopping a hardwood floor. Windows 11. Clean blinds by making a solution with equal parts water and vinegar. Spray or soak some of the solution on an old sock and wipe the blinds with it.

14. Did someone forget to use a coaster and now there is an unsightly water ring on the table? Use your iron to get it out! Empty all the water out of the iron. Put it on high heat. Cover the water stain with a white pillowcase. Move the

16. Dust fan blades with a pillowcase. Pull the pillowcase over the entire fan blade and wrap tightly. Pull all the way down and off the blade. The dust clumps will be trapped in the pillowcase instead of falling through the air onto the floor or furniture below.

Forget scrubbing—use a squeegee to clean windows and mirrors.

Laundry 17. Stubborn stains on your favorite white outfit? Put that bleach down! Wash and then hang the garment out to dry in the sun for a few hours. The sun will bleach the stain and brighten dingy whites. This also works on colored fabric, but don’t leave it in the sun too long because the colors will fade. ¶

12. Forget scrubbing—use a squeegee to clean windows and mirrors. Put a squirt of dishwashing liquid in approximately half a bucket of water. Use a sponge to apply the soapy water. Squeegee off for streak-free windows.

hot iron back and forth over the pillowcase. The spot will disappear.

Furniture and Fixtures 13. Squeegees aren’t only for windows. Use them to remove embedded pet hair from furniture and carpets.

15. Make dusting easier by using a microfiber mitt that will trap dust rather than relocate it. When you are done, toss the mitt in the washer, but don’t use fabric softener on it.

Ukiah Unified School District

Ukiah Unified Kindergarten Enrolling Now

2017-18 Kindergarten Registration and Transitional Kindergarten Registration Students age 5 by September 1, 2017 will be enrolled in Kindergarten Students turning 5 between Sept. 2 and Dec. 2, 2017 are eligible to enroll in our Transitional Kindergarten Program



May 9, Grades K-2: Peter & the Wolf May 15, Grades 3, 4, 5 Persephone & Demeter May 16, Grades 6, 7, 8 Hades & Persephone From 1:30 to 3pm in the Great Room

Join Us & Learn More! La Vida 707-459-6344 Charter 16201 Hwy 101, Ukiah School

Registration forms available at school offices and at

Janeen Lewis is a freelance journalist and mom of two.

April 2017

MendoLakeFamilyLife 15

Small Changes, Big Savings Simple Tips for Living within Your Means By Sandra Gordon


f course, kids are priceless. But raising them? Well, that’s a pricey proposition. According to the USDA, for each child from birth to age 17, you can expect to spend around

$233,610. Child-rearing expenses such as housing, food, childcare, and education all factor into the tab.

To meet your expenses and have reserves for emergencies, retirement, and college, you have to strategically cut corners, says Patricia Seaman, spokesperson for the National Endowment for Financial Education.

such as a crib, stroller, and car seat, list practical items that you’ll need in quantity, such as disposable diapers in larger sizes, cloth diapers, wipes, breast pads, and Diaper Genie refills.

Here’s the bottom line on smart ways to manage your money while raising a family.

Eat out less often. “Eating out, including take-out, is one of the most expensive things families blow their budget on,” says Denise Winston, a financial expert and author of It’s Your Money (2013). The convenience is nice but not so much

Do your baby registry right. A well-planned baby registry can minimize the cost of your baby’s first year. Besides big-ticket items, 16 MendoLakeFamilyLife

You can slash 25–50 percent off your grocery bill by shopping strategically. when you consider that the cost of one restaurant meal could buy several meals’ worth of groceries. According to the USDA, it’s possible to feed a family of four for as little as $150 per week. “Make eating out an occasional planned treat rather than a habit because you’re tired and there’s nothing to eat at home for dinner,” Winston says. Added bonus: Eating at home is healthier because you have control of the ingredients and portion sizes. Cut your grocery bill. You can slash 25–50 percent off your bill

April 2017

by shopping strategically: Plan a weekly menu around sale items in your supermarket’s circular. Save even more by combining sale items with coupons, then stocking your pantry and freezer with bargain buys and planning your meals around your sale inventory.

A well-planned baby registry can minimize the cost of your baby’s first year. “We spend no more than $75 per week on groceries,” says Kelby Green, an avid couponer and the father of two girls, ages 1 and 3. “For a four-person family, that’s pretty good.” Keep in mind that many grocery items go on sale every six weeks, says Stephanie Nelson, owner of The trick is to buy enough of a sale item (with a coupon) to last until the next sale. To save time, batch-cook and freeze meals for later. Save on birthday parties. “Nothing says fun like balloons,” says certified balloon artist Sandi Masori, author of The DIY Balloon Bible for All Seasons (2014). Air-filled balloon columns are an easy way to liven up any space and turn a (frugal) DIY kid’s birthday party into an event. The gist? You’ll need an inexpensive pole lamp (available at Walmart for around $11) and about 17 large balloons. After blowing up each balloon to the same size, tie balloons together in groups of two. Twist those duplets together to make a quad. Then,

wrap each quad around the pole, starting at the bottom and stacking them until you’ve covered the whole pole. Attach a jumbo foil balloon as a topper. Use balloon columns to adorn doorways or frame your party space. Personalize balloons by adhering foam-board sticking letters, decorations, or photos with double-stick tape. One caveat: If any balloons pop, pick up the pieces immediately. They are a choking hazard.

we can’t buy that. But you can put it on your birthday list.”

Skimp on gifts. If your kids get inundated with presents from friends and relatives on birthdays and holidays, take the opportunity to give them just one large gift or several smaller items. Your kids won’t feel deprived since your gifts aren’t the whole show.

Start or participate in a babysitting co-op—an informal, free babysitting service organized with other parents in your neighborhood.

Save on a sitter. Start or participate in a babysitting co-op— an informal, free babysitting service organized with other parents in your neighborhood. The gist? You swap babysitting and other free services, such as pet sitting, errand running, or home repair with a community of fellow parents.

which is a tax credit you can take for childcare, and the American Opportunity Credit, if you’ve got kids in college. It gives you a tax break of $2,500 per eligible student.

Buy secondhand clothes. Used kids’ clothes are a fraction of the cost of new ones. And kids blow through sizes so fast that it doesn’t make sense to pay full price, especially for holiday and special-occasion outfits. Consider secondhand clothes for yourself, too. Get rid of the “gimmes.” Small, unplanned purchases can add up. If your child asks for things when you’re shopping that you weren’t planning to buy, learn to say “No, April 2017

Tap into tax savings. This includes employee benefits such as a flexible spending account (FSA) if your employer offers one. An FSA allows you to pay for out-of-pocket expenses, such as day care, with pre-tax money, ultimately giving you a discount of up to 40 percent. At tax time, be sure to take advantage of the Dependent Care Credit,

Build a rainy-day fund. “Research shows that as little as $500 in an emergency savings fund helps people sleep better at night, decreases their anxiety, and gives them better health,” Seaman says. She recommends automatically transferring money to your savings account each month, even if it’s just a little. “Make savings part of your monthly budget and do the best you can with it.” ¶ Sandra Gordon is an award-winning writer who delivers expert advice and the latest developments in health, nutrition, parenting, and consumer issues.

MendoLakeFamilyLife 17

each brain is different, reactions to the injury vary from child to child. (See sidebar for common symptoms.) Symptoms also differ between boys and girls. A 2011 study in the Journal of Athletic Training found that both boys and girls report headaches after a concussion. But boys more often experience amnesia and confusion or disorientation, while girls may describe themselves as being drowsy or sensitive to noise. Myth: You have to be knocked unconscious for it to be a concussion.

Confusion about 6 Myths Concussion Unmasked

Fact: According to the American Academy of Neurology (AAN), less than 10 percent of concussions cause the person to black out. And a

Symptoms can take hours or even days to appear.

By Lara Krupicka


hen my teenaged daughter came off the soccer field at the end of a game complaining of a headache, I brushed it off. Even when she mentioned another player had hit her in the head during a scuffle for the ball. The blow had been mild enough not to disrupt play, so I gave her ibuprofen and encouraged her to rest. When the headache persisted, I chalked it up to migraine tendencies.

Imagine my grief and guilt when four days later the school athletic trainer diagnosed her with a concussion. I couldn’t understand how I missed the signs.

To help you avoid mistaking or mistreating your child’s condition, should he or she suffer a bump to the head, I’ve unmasked six common concussion myths.

I’m not the first mom to be blindsided by a child’s concussion. Due to the myriad of myths surrounding this condition, it often takes parents by surprise.

Myth: You can tell right away when someone has a concussion. They’ll vomit and have a bad headache.

18 MendoLakeFamilyLife

Fact: Symptoms can take hours or even days to appear. And because

concussion can occur even without a direct blow to the head. An impact to another part of the body, such as a hard fall, can sometimes jar the head enough to cause the brain to come in contact with the skull’s interior. It is this internal collision that causes the injury. Myth: Don’t let a concussed person fall asleep. Fact: We’ve long heard that you should rouse a person every few hours after they’ve experienced a hit to the head to prevent a coma. In reality, after suffering a concussion your child can (and should) be allowed to sleep. His or her brain requires rest to begin healing. However, it is a good idea to keep an eye on your child for the first day or two to watch for the appearance of

April 2017

new behaviors and symptoms, or a decrease in functioning that could require an emergency room visit. Myth: A concussion is “no big deal.” Kids should just shake it off.

Get plenty of rest, both at night and during the day. Avoid physically demanding activities (e.g., sports or working out) or those requiring much concentration (e.g., sustained computer use, video games). For some kids this may mean a reduction in school hours, homework, or both. The CDC suggests concussion sufferers increase activity slowly, and only with a doctor’s approval. The American Academy of Pediatrics offers a helpful form your pediatrician can complete to direct the school on accommodations that should be made for a child with a concussion. You can find it online at: committees-councils-sections/ council-on-sports-medicine-andfitness/documents/returntoschool.pdf. Myth: Only football and hockey players sustain concussions. Fact: According to the AAN, football, rugby, hockey, and soccer top the list of sports that make boys most susceptible to concussion. Girls face

Meanwhile younger children (birth to 9 years) are commonly injured while bicycling and during playground activities. Myth: As long as my child wears a helmet, he or she won’t get a concussion. Fact: Helmets prevent skull fractures, not necessarily concussions. While a padded helmet or other protective device may lessen the impact to your child’s cranium, it can’t stop the forces of motion that cause internal brain impact. The AAN encourages parents to make sure their child’s helmet fits well and is kept in good condition to reduce the risk of concussion. With a better understanding of concussions, you can be more aware of what you’re seeing (and what to do) if one happens to your child. ¶

Seattle (SEA) Alaska Airlines

Portland (PDX) Alaska Airlines

Sonoma County Airport


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) recommendations for concussion patients include that they:


©P N

Fact: A concussion is also known as a mild traumatic brain injury. Not only is it unwise for your child to continue in sports-related activities while recovering from a concussion, she or he may also need to cut back on mental stimulation.

the greatest risk while playing soccer and basketball.


Las Vegas (LAS) Allegiant Airlines

Los Angeles (LAX) Alaska Airlines

Orange County (SNA) Alaska Airlines

San Diego (SAN) Alaska Airlines

Phoenix Sky Harbor (PHX) American Airlines

Lara Krupicka is a parenting journalist and mom to three girls, all of whom have suffered concussions.

Symptoms of Concussion Dazed look Disorientation or confusion Decreased balance, coordination, or reaction time Memory loss Nausea and/or vomiting Slurred speech Dizziness Blurry or double vision Headache Sensitivity to light or sound This list is not exhaustive. Check out the CDC’s Heads Up to Parents site for more information: headsup.

April 2017

HEY MOM GIVE US A SHOUT! We want to know what you think.

• What did you like? • What didn’t you like? • What subjects would you like us to cover? • Got any local story ideas? e-mail

MendoLakeFamilyLife 19

Crafting with Kids

Egg-stra Special Easter Creative Decorating Ideas

By Denise Morrison Yearian


pring is a time to celebrate the renewal of life and nature. This year Easter falls on April 16. Before the month slips away, crack open your calendar and peel away some time for these “egg-stra” special activities. Earthy Egg Heads Items needed: egg shells; permanent markers; dirt or potting soil; grass seed; toilet paper roll; stickers. Crack a raw egg around the upper section of the shell. Peel the opening and remove the egg. Rinse the shell and let it dry. Carefully draw a face on the front of the egg. Now fill it half full with dirt. Sprinkle grass seed on top and cover with a little more dirt. To make a base for your egghead, cut off a small section of the toilet paper roll and decorate with markers and/ or stickers. Place the egg on the base. Every day sprinkle a little water over the dirt. Within a week or so “hair” will begin to grow. Edible Egg Dye Items needed: natural dyes (purple grape juice [purple], blueberries [blue], spinach leaves [green], lemon peel or ground cumin [yellow], yellow onion 20 MendoLakeFamilyLife

skins [orange], cranberries [pink]); water; six pans; empty eggshells; white vinegar. Add one natural dye ingredient, along with water, to each pan and bring to a boil. Let cool. Strain the dye ingredient so only liquid is left. Place egg shells in each pan along with the colored dye. Add enough water and two teaspoons of white vinegar to cover the eggs. (Note: Do not add vinegar to the pan that had onion skins.) Bring each pot to boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 15 minutes. Let the eggs sit until they reach the desired color, then remove from the pans and let dry. Cascarone Craze Items needed: empty egg shells; egg cartons; dye; funnel; confetti; glue; scissors; 2 ½-inch square pieces of tissue paper.

Cascarones, also known as confetti eggs, are popular in Mexico. Several weeks in advance, begin saving eggshells. When cracking open a raw egg, break around the upper section of the shell. Peel the opening so the hole is no more than 1-inch around. Remove the egg. Rinse the shell, let it dry hole side down, then store it in an empty carton. When you have a dozen empty eggshells, dye them using the conventional or natural method (see Edible Egg Dye). When dry, place the eggs back into the carton with the hole side up. Use a funnel to fill each egg about half full with confetti. Apply glue to the outer edges of a 2 ½-inch square piece of tissue paper and cover the holes. On Easter give everyone a confetti-filled egg, and then follow tradition by chasing each other around and cracking the egg on one another’s heads for good luck. Better yet, use them for egg tosses, relay races, and other games. ¶ Denise Morrison Yearian is the former editor of two parenting magazines and the mother of three children and four grandchildren.

April 2017

Cooking with Kids

Creative with Cauliflower Shepherd’s Pie Gets a Makeover By Momma Chef


s a fellow busy parent, I know that time is a precious commodity for today’s families. You need to make dinner in a flash and with these recipes, each of which takes six minutes or less to prepare, you can. Skillet Shepherd’s Pie with Cauliflower Mash This recipe was created when I was on one of the 10 different diets I’ve tried this year. This one suggested cutting carbs by substituting potatoes with cauliflower. Little did I know how much I would love the potato-free version of this dish! Ingredients • 1 12-ounce bag cauliflower florets • 1 tablespoon olive oil • 1 pound ground beef • 1 container Trader Joe’s mirepoix mix (contains chopped onions, carrots, and celery) • 2 tablespoons salt

Directions Preheat oven to 350°F. Steam cauliflower florets in a pot on the stove or in the microwave. While the cauliflower is steaming, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a separate oven-safe skillet over medium high heat. Add in ground meat and cook 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Then add in Trader Joe’s mirepoix mix, 1 tablespoon salt, and the chopped rosemary. Cook another 2 minutes, mixing everything together. When cauliflower is soft, mash with a fork and add in 1 tablespoon salt. Remove the meat from heat, spread the cauliflower mash over the mixture in the skillet, and bake for 25 minutes. Serves 6 or more. ¶

• 2 tablespoons chopped rosemary

April 2017

Tips • If you can’t find the mirepoix mix, you can use 1/2 onion, 3 carrots, and 3 celery stalks—all chopped. • If you prefer mashed potatoes over cauliflower mash, substitute 3 cups mashed potatoes. • I normally like to make my dishes in one pot, but this one is so ridiculously delicious that it’s worth using the extra pot! It is best made in a cast-iron skillet. If you don’t already own one, it’s worth buying. I got mine at a discount store, and I use it all the time. Karen Nochimowski, aka Momma Chef, is a mother of three active boys (ages 12, 8, and 5). Find her at and at

MendoLakeFamilyLife 21


Calendar of Events Blossoming Delight


ome people’s gardens are art. Infused with creative passion, their landscapes are too beautiful not to share. Enter the Gems of Clearlake Spring Garden Tour on April 8, 10 a.m.–4 p.m. The self-guided tour features six residential gardens, as well as two community gardens, in Clearlake. If what you behold inspires your own green thumb, you can buy plants, cuttings, and other accoutrements sold by vendors at various stops on the tour. Tickets are $20 and may be purchased at Nature’s Own Health Foods and Lakeshore Feed and Grain, both in Clearlake, or by calling Molly at 701-3554. Proceeds go toward the dump fees of Citizens Caring 4 Clearlake, a local group that is dedicated to ridding the area of litter and debris. For more information, see ¶

Saturday 1 FREE Embodied Meditation for Pregnancy & Beyond. Embodied

meditation practice gently guides you through a series of subtle movements. Led by Leslie Kotin, retired nurse midwife. The practice is done sitting on a chair & lying on your side. 10:30 a.m.–noon. Mendo Baby. 198 S. School St., Ukiah. 462-1020. FREE Build a Bunny Basket. You & your child can build a bunny basket & decorate it with paint & stickers. 9 a.m.–noon. Home

Depot. 350 N. Orchard Ave., Ukiah. 462-3009. Register at workshops/#store/8408. Pasta for Paws. Spaghetti dinner. Live & silent auctions. $18–$20. Ages 6 & under free. 5–7 p.m. Proceeds go to the Humane Society for Inland Mendocino. Redwood Empire Fairgrounds. 1055 N. State St., Ukiah. events/1817300761863276. Wild Fabrications. Exhibit of fine-art quilts. Artists create unusual interpretations of animals using

unexpected materials. Thru Jun. 25. Wednesdays–Saturdays: 10 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Sundays: Noon–4:30 p.m. $3–$10. Grace Hudson Museum. 431 S. Main St., Ukiah. 467-2836. Spring Fling Gala. Catered meal.

No-host wine & beer bar (first drink is free). Performance by Mendocino Ballet dancers. Silent & live auctions. $60. 6–10 p.m. Barra of Mendocino Winery. 7051 N. State St., Redwood Valley. 463-2290. Spring Dance Festival. Local

dancers ages 7–84 perform everything from ballet & tap to hip-hop & clogging. $10–$20. Apr. 1: 7 p.m. Apr. 2: 2 p.m. Soper Reese Theatre. 275 Main St., Lakeport.

Sunday 2 FREE Fiddlers’ Jam. Musicians perform Americana music. Noon–2 p.m. Ely Stage Stop & Country Museum. 9921 St. Hwy. 281 (Soda Bay Rd.), Kelseyville.

Monday 3 Whale & Jazz Festival. Enjoy

concerts, special dinners, theater, film, 22 MendoLakeFamilyLife

April 2017

poetry, lectures & whale watching. Runs thru May 20. Visit gualalaarts. org for a full schedule of events.

Tuesday 4 FREE Five Retro-Chic Dance-Exercise Classes. All levels

welcome! Dance to many styles of music: pop, vintage classics, rock & roll, Broadway, Latin & more. Five free classes. Tuesdays & Thursdays. 9–10 a.m. Mendocino Ballet Studio. 205 S. State St., Ukiah. 601-870-0029.

Friday 7 FREE First Friday Family Fun Night.

Sponsored by the Mendocino Coast Child Abuse Prevention Council. 5–6:30 p.m. Town Hall. 363 N. Main St., Fort Bragg. FREE Mother-Wise Clearlake Moms Group. Meet other moms & their little

ones. Share the joys & challenges of new motherhood & learn about infant development. Bus passes available. Fridays. 10 a.m. St. John’s Lutheran Church. 14310 Memory Ln., Clearlake. 349-1210. facebook. com/motherwiselakecounty. Hopland Bioblitz. Family-friendly

event for all ages. Join team of experts to find & collect data. Bats with Rachael Long: Apr. 7, 7–9 p.m. Birdwatching: Apr. 8, 7–9 a.m. Spiders & Scorpions with Lauren Esposito: Apr. 8, 9 a.m.–noon. Poisonous & Venomous Animals with Mike Cardwell: Apr. 8, 4–6 p.m. Hopland Research & Extension Center. 4070 University Rd., Hopland. 744-1424, ext. 105. See for schedule. Mendocino County Museum Road Show. Step back in time & experience

life in Mendocino County during the 19th century thru story & song. $14–$18. Apr. 7: 7:30 p.m. Willits High School. 299 N. Main St., Willits. Apr. 8: 7:30 p.m. Arena Theater. 214

Local Egg 8Hunts Craze for Kids One of Easter’s most beloved kid rituals is the mad dash for eggs. Grab a basket and take your clan to one of these local festivities.

Lake County Hidden Valley Lake Meet the star of the show—the Easter Bunny—at the Hidden Valley Lake egg hunt on April 15 at 9 a.m. at the baseball field on Hartmann Rd. After the regal rabbit’s appearance, the hunt will begin at 10 a.m. sharp, with four different age groups looking for eggs at the same time. Early birds may be rewarded: The first 100 kids to arrive will get free goodie-filled baskets. Kids as young as babies and up to sixth grade are welcome to attend. Make sure to bring empty baskets to fill with treasure. Lakeport As it has done for nearly a century, the Lakeport Rotary will host its free hunt for children ages 0–12 at the Lake County Fairgrounds on April 16. Gates open at 1:15 p.m. Kids will be grouped by age and then start the scramble for eggs at 1:30 p.m. Middletown

Kids can get their pictures taken with the Easter Bunny and take home a basket of yummies (while supplies last) at the free Eggstravaganza at Twin Pine Casino on April 15, 11 a.m.–2 p.m.

Mendocino County Boonville There will be a whole slew of entertainment awaiting kids at the Easterfest at the free Family Life Christian April 2017

Center on April 16, 11 a.m.–1 p.m. Besides an egg hunt, there will also be games, a bouncy house, and even a puppet show. Hungry and thirsty revelers can indulge in free hot dogs and other snacks and drinks while you enter a raffle and maybe win a prize. Call 895-2046 or go to for details. On April 16 at the Mendocino County Fairgrounds, let the Anderson Valley Fire Department make you breakfast, 8 a.m.–11 a.m., before the kids go off in search of eggs at noon. The meal is $10 for adults, and $5 for kids under 12. Fort Bragg Kids can vie for one of 36 grand prizes at the Fort Bragg Leo Club free hunt. Little ones ages 0–10 will be divided into three age groups to search for eggs. The event will be held on April 15 at 10 a.m. at the track field between Redwood Elementary and the CV Starr Center. Ukiah Your Easter fun can help make the world a better place at a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society. Kids can search for eggs and jump around in a bouncy house—and the $5–$8 admission fee goes toward fighting disease. The event will be held in Todd Grove Park on April 15 starting at 10:30 a.m., with the hunt beginning promptly at 11 a.m. Willits Continuing an almost 30-year tradition, the Willits Lions Club will hold its hunt on April 16 at noon at the Willits High School. If you wake on Easter morn to pouring rain, never fear—eggs will be handed out. MendoLakeFamilyLife 23

Main St., Pt. Arena. Apr. 15: 2 p.m. & 7:30 p.m. Mendocino College. 1000 Hensley Creek Rd., Ukiah. Apr. 21: 7:30 p.m. Anderson Valley Grange. 9800 CA-128, Boonville. Apr. 22: 7:30 p.m. Cotton Auditorium. 500 N. Harold St., Fort Bragg. 459-2736.

FREE Women’s Cultural Wellness Weaving & Beading Art & Craft Bazaar. 10 a.m.–2:30 p.m. Lake

County Tribal Health. Main Administration Bldg. 925 Bevins Ct., Lakeport.

Saturday 8 Spring of Hope Benefit. Proceeds

to purchase building supplies to rebuild homes lost in the Valley & Clayton fires. $10. Dinner (6–7:30 p.m.): $8. Dessert, drinks, beer & wine extra. Raffle & silent auction. 6–9:30 p.m. Big Valley Hall. 1510 Big Valley Rd., Lakeport. events/204257673388968. Dystopian Prom. Interactive survival games, DJ music, circus performances & Anti Prom King & Queen contest. Dress your best & adorn with survival gear. No-host bar. $15–$20. 21 & over only. 8 p.m.–midnight. Crown Hall. 45285 Ukiah St., Mendocino.

My teeth are so bright...

FREE Kids Music & Sound Coding Club. Learn how programming is

I gotta wear shades!

Start Healthy Dental Habits Early. From tots to teens, we give your kids a dental experience they can smile about—and that’s the tooth!

Welcoming kids of all ages. HEA







(707) 468-1010 333 Laws Ave. Ukiah



(707) 263-7725

5335 Lakeshore Blvd. Lakeport

(707) 456-9600 45 Hazel St. Willits


24 MendoLakeFamilyLife


used to create music. Students will use the computer to play musical notes, create a music video & build an interactive music display. Grades 3–8. Preregistration required. Space limited. Saturdays. 10–11:15 a.m. Ukiah Library. 105 N. Main St., Ukiah. 463-4490. Spring Symphony of the Redwoods.

Brahms’ Symphony No. 3 & Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4, featuring pianist Spencer Myer. $20. 18 & under free. Apr. 8: 7:30 p.m. Apr. 9: 2 p.m. Cotton Auditorium. 500 N. Harold St., Fort Bragg. 946-0898. Casting Call for HBO Movie. Men & women of all shapes, sizes & ethnicities (18 & over), kids (6 & over) to work (non-union) as background extras on a new project. Bring current 3”x5” photo & pen. $84 for 8 hours & overtime after the 8th hour. Plan on being available for the entire day or night. Meals will be provided while working. 10 a.m. Ukiah Conference Center. 200 S. School St., Ukiah.

April 2017

FREE Spring Fling Garden Party.

Outdoor fair with plants, garden art, food, music & more. 10 a.m.– 4 p.m. Harbor Village Art Complex. 6197 E. Hwy. 20, Lucerne. Gems of Clearlake Spring Garden Tour. Self-guided tour features six

residential gardens & two community gardens. 10 a.m.–4 p.m. $20. Benefits Citizens Caring 4 Clearlake, a local group dedicated to ridding the area of litter. Purchase tickets at Nature’s Own Health Foods & Lakeshore Feed & Grain, both in Clearlake, or call Molly: 701-3554. Rob Culbertson Concert. Culbertson

plays the Chapman Stick, an unusual stringed instrument. 7:30 p.m. $25. Concert not suitable for young children. Tallman Hotel. 9550 Main St., Upper Lake.

EVERYTHING FOR BABY! Dresses Maternity Classes Toys Consignment 198 S. School St. Ukiah • 707.462.1020 •



Thursday 13 FREE Walkabout Ukiah. Raise awareness about child abuse prevention. 10 a.m.–1 p.m. The walk begins & ends at Court Appointed Special Advocates. 340 N. Main St., Ukiah. 489-5346.

Friday 14





For information and to register for the walk visit:


Harlem Ambassadors. Basketball

fun. Sponsored by the Ukiah Rotary. 6 p.m. $7–$10. Mendocino College. 1000 Hensley Creek Rd., Ukiah. events.

ToFREE reserve booth contact Mike•Mix 994-5486 or • aCRAFTS • MUSIC FOOD • ENTERTAINMENT • ACTIVITIES • FUN

Saturday 15 FREE National Park Service.

RESOURCES WEAR YOUR SUPERHERO COSTUME & WALK Every year more than•6.3 million children are affected by abuse or neglect in theWITH US. US A report of child abuse or neglect is made every 10 seconds. Every day in the US, 5 Every year more than 6.3 million children are affected by abuse or neglect in the US. A children die from child abuse or neglect. Our children need a hero.

report of child abuse or neglect is made every 10 seconds. Every day in the US, 5 children die from child abuse or neglect. Our children need a hero.


Entrance fees for national parks will be waived the weekends of April 15–16 & 22–23. 7 a.m.–dusk. Find a park near you:


FREE 4th Annual Children’s Expo.

Informational booths, interactive games & much more. Special appearance by the Easter Bunny. 10

For information & to register for the walk visit: To reserve a booth contact Mike Mix 994-5486 or

April 2017

MendoLakeFamilyLife 25

a.m.–2 p.m. Pear Tree Center. 504 E. Perkins St., Ukiah.

& CV Starr Center. Fort Bragg.

Easter Egg Hunt. Hosted

Easter Egg Hunt. Fundraiser

by the Fort Bragg Lion & Leo Clubs. Ages 0–10. Three age groups. 36 grand prizes. 10–10:30 a.m. Track field between Redwood Elementary

in support of the American Cancer Society. $5–$8. Egg hunt & bouncy house. 11 a.m. sharp. Todd Grove Park. 600 Live Oak Ave., Ukiah.

Love Working with Kids?

WORK AT HOME • CHOOSE YOUR OWN HOURS • WORK WITH CHILDREN Own Your Own Business • Free Training and other great incentives for attending fun workshops. • Child Care Assistance for lowincome eligible families. • Free Child Care Referrals.

1-800-606-5550 ext. 211

Rural Communities Child Care

FREE Eggstravaganza. Photos with Easter Bunny. Easter baskets (while supplies last). Children’s activities. 11 a.m.–2 p.m. Twin Pine Casino. 22223 CA-29, Middletown. Cupcake Wars. Vote for your

favorite cupcake. Benefits Willits High School Jr. Boosters. 2–4 p.m. Willits Community Center. 111 E. Commercial St., Willits. FREE Hidden Valley Lake Egg Hunt.

Meet Easter Bunny at 9 a.m. Hunt at 10 a.m. sharp. First 100 kids receive foodie-filled Easter basket. Baseball field on Hartmann Rd., Hidden Valley Lake.

Sunday 16 FREE Lakeport Rotary Egg Hunt.

Ages 0–12. Gates: 1:15 p.m. Hunt: 1:30 p.m. Lake County Fairgrounds. 401 Martin St., Lakeport. FREE Easterfest. Hunt, games, bouncy house, puppet show, free food, raffle, prizes. 11 a.m.–1 p.m. Family Life Christian Center. 14500 CA-128, Boonville. FREE Anderson Valley Fire Department Egg Hunt. Breakfast:

8–11 a.m. $5–$10. Hunt: Noon. Mendocino County Fairgrounds. 14400 CA-128, Boonville. FREE Willits Lions Club Egg Hunt.

Noon. Eggs will be handed out if it rains. Willits High School. 299 N. Main St., Willits.

Thursday 20 100 Years of Broadway! Featuring

Family health care for all of Lake County.

26 MendoLakeFamilyLife


songs from Les Miserables, Show Boat, Gypsy, Wicked, West Side Story, Phantom of the Opera & more. $12–$22. Thru Apr. 30. Fridays & Saturdays: 7:30 p.m. Sundays: 3 p.m. Eagles Hall Theatre. 210 N. Corry St., Fort Bragg.

Friday 21 Freeform Barefoot Dancing. No partner or experience necessary.

April 2017

Drug- & alcohol-free event for all ages & levels. $5–$10. 7–9 p.m. Yoga Mendocino. 206 Mason St., Ukiah. 462-2580. FREE Native American Empowerment Day. For Native

Family Portraits

American students in grades 7–12 & adults interested in support & success in school. 9 a.m.–1 p.m. Woodland College. 15880 Dam Rd. Ext., Clearlake. 995-7900.

Individuals • Families • Events • (707)245-5321

Saturday 22 FREE 7th Annual Children’s Festival & Advocacy Walk. Join the fight to

prevent child abuse. Put on your superhero costume & walk. Crafts, music, activities, entertainment & more. 10 a.m.–3 p.m. Library Park. 225 Park St., Lakeport. FREE Anderson Valley Unity Club Garden Section’s Wildflower Show.

Thru Apr. 23. Enjoy trees, shrubs & flowers. 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Mendocino County Fairgrounds. 14400 Hwy. 128, Boonville. FREE Anderson Valley Goat Festival. Goat costume parade,

milking contest, yogurt- & cheese-making workshops & birria cook-off. 10 a.m.–6 p.m. Mendocino County Fairgrounds. 14400 Hwy. 128, Boonville. FREE Earth Day Celebration. Solar boat races, chalk bubbles, solar workshops, garden stuff, arts & crafts & acoustic music. 10 a.m.–6 p.m. Real Goods Solar Living Center. 13771 S. Hwy. 101, Hopland. 472-2403.

The Redwood Empire Association for Education of Young Children Celebrates

Week of the Young Child In collaboration with local businesses & agencies serving children & families, we are hosting a free family fair

SATURDAY APRIL 22 Alex Thomas Plaza, 310 S. State St. Ukiah • 10 am–1 pm

Wednesday 26

Fun for the Whole Family!

FREE Paper Tigers. The film follows a year in the life of an alternative high school that has changed its approach to disciplining students. Offers guidance on how to break the cycles of poverty, violence & disease that affect families. 5:30 p.m. Konocti Education

Face painting • music • games children’s crafts • bubble games rock climbing • wooden crafts


MendoLakeFamilyLife 27

Center. William Cornelison Event Center. 15850 Dam Rd. Ext., Clearlake. FREE Toxic Stress: Applying Research to Practice.

guardian. 3–4:30 p.m. Ukiah Library. 105 N. Main St., Ukiah. 463-4490.

Saturday 29

Trauma-informed resilience-building workshop. 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Brick Hall. 16374 Main St., Lower Lake. 289-4110. Register: lakecountychildrens FREE Career Fair. Deadline to sign up as an exhibitor: April 14. Fair: 9 a.m.–12:30 p.m. Willits High School. 299 N. Main St., Willits. 459-7700, ext. 1513.

Thursday 27 FREE Celebrate Children. Activities

for children & families. Sponsored by the Mendocino Coast Child Abuse Prevention Council. 10 a.m.–2 p.m. Parade starts at 11:30 a.m. Redwood Elementary School. 324 S. Lincoln St., Fort Bragg.

Friday 28 FREE Bio-STEM Seed Bombs.

Plant them & watch them grow. For young designers ages 7–11. Children must be accompanied by a parent or

Rural Health Rocks. 5-time Grammy Award–winner Michael McDonald performing with special guests. Fundraiser benefiting the teaching hospitals of Lake & Mendocino Counties. $40–$100. 7 p.m. Cotton Auditorium. 500 N. Harold St., Fort Bragg. Chowder & Jazz. This family-friendly

event includes a concert of traditional New Orleans jazz. Chowder-tasting tickets: $25. Concert only is free. 11:30 a.m.–2:30 p.m. Gualala Arts Center. 46501 Gualala Rd., Gualala. 884-1138. Picnic Day on the Farm. Bring your own picnic, or see what’s available at the farm stand. Wool & wood demonstrations, live music, farm animals. Thru Apr. 30. 11 a.m.–4 p.m. BBQ & games: $20. Kids under 8 free. BBQ only: $15. Casari Ranch. 42900 Curly Ln., (Hwy. 1), Point Arena. 882-1885.

A Little Somethin’ Good


ood things come in small packages. And that’s especially true of cupcakes. If your kids, like most, consider themselves cupcake connoisseurs, they won’t want to miss the Cupcake Wars. They can cast their votes for the best treat while judges evaluate entries for decorations and taste. Dip into the frosting on April 15, 2–4 p.m., at the Willits Community Center in Willits. Proceeds benefit the Willits High School Jr. Boosters. ¶

28 MendoLakeFamilyLife

FREE Fringe Art of Motorcycle Collecting. Complimentary hors

d’oeuvres. View rare historic Italian motorcycles. Collectors will be on hand to discuss the rare bikes. 3–5 p.m. The Zen House. 170 Main St., Point Arena. 882-2281. FREE 7th Annual Mendo Garden Expo. Learn about organic gardening,

hydroponic gardening, sustainable living, innovative gardening techniques, bio-dynamics & renewable energy. Activities for the entire family. 10:30 a.m.–4 p.m. Redwood Empire Fairgrounds. 1055 N. State St., Ukiah. Hike 4 Healing. This yearly 6-mile trek is a fundraiser to support the work of Worldwide Healing Hands in Ghana. $25 donation to participate. Sign in: 8 a.m. Hike: 9 a.m.–1 p.m. Wright Peak Summit Trail. Konocti Rd., Kelseyville. Register:

Sunday 30 Tide Pooling. Look for creatures

during a super-low tide. Parking: $7. 8:30–10:30 a.m. Gualala Point Regional Park. 42401 Hwy. 1, Gualala. FREE 7th Annual Kelseyville Olive Festival. Contests, product

samples, children’s booths & more. Benefits Lake County Resource Center. 11 a.m.–5 p.m. Chacewater Winery & Olive Mill. 5625 Gaddy Ln., Kelseyville. FREE 15th Annual ukiaHaiku Festival. A celebration & competition

devoted to the haiku. Winners of all ages will read their work. Light refreshments to follow. 2–4 p.m. Civic Center. 300 Seminary Ave., Ukiah.

April 2017

Marketplace Tutoring


Tuition-free Montessori elementary for ages 5-13  Hands-on, arts and music

The Pier Chowder House & Tap Room crew, the defending Chowder Challenge champions.

integrated with academics

 National Green Campus  Promotes responsibility, respect, and peace

307 North State Street Ukiah


Happy Clams

Located on north end of Fairgrounds PO Box 966 Ukiah 95482


endocino County locals are clam chowder experts. So who better to decide which iteration of the cuisine should be labeled “the best” than you and your family? Cast your vote at the Chowder Challenge on April 29, 11:30 a.m.–2:30 p.m., at the Gualala Arts Center in Gualala. Slurp up your favorite soups while listening to Barnebey’s Hot Four play traditional New Orleans jazz. The music is free at the event, which is part of the center’s Whale and Jazz Festival. A set of 15 chowder-tasting tickets and a commemorative glass runs $20–$25. Purchase tickets at Call 884-1138 or go to for more information. ¶

Give Your Give Child a Head Start! ✓ Referrals for transportation available Free & Low-Cost Quality Preschool! Also providing FREE in-home services for infants, toddlers & pregnant women!

Head Start Child Development Program


707-462-0913 Free Your & Low-Cost Quality Preschool! • Ukiah Child a ✓ 1/2-day & full-day for North Ukiah - Bush St. ages 18 months to 5 years Nokomis - Washington Ave. Head South Ukiah - S. State St. ✓ Potty-trained not necessary Peach Tree - S. Orchard Ave. Start! ✓ Children with disabilities welcome • Willits Near Brookside School at Spruce St. & Lincoln Way

• Lake County Upper Lake - 2nd Street Upper Lake - Clover Valley Lakeport - Howard Ave. Clearlake - Pearl Ave. Clearlake - Meadowbrook Dr.

La Vida Head Start (707) 462-2582 Program License #230111843 Child Development • Coast Charter School

Applications online: • (707) 462-2582 Fort Bragg - Lincoln St. • Free K-12 Public Charter

Get Mom’s Attention!  Nathan DeHart


Hikers on Mount Konocti’s Wright Summit Trail.

Classifieds Work Call 586-9562


707-459-6344 16201 N. Hwy. 101, Willits

Accelerated Achievement Academy US News and World Reports: America’s Best High Schools Bronze Medal  Free public school  Grades 4-12  Small classes  Support for struggling

Hike 4 Healing

n developing countries, the lack of proper equipment and health care providers can lead to higher rates of maternal mortality. A local nonprofit, Worldwide Healing Hands, is trying to make a difference. Help it change lives by joining the Hike 4 Healing on Mount Konocti’s Wright Summit Trail on April 29, 8 a.m.–1 p.m. For this particular event, a suggested donation of $25 will help bring surgical care, midwifery training, and other healthcare services to Ghana. The organization also offers services in other countries, such as India and Nepal, and, closer to home, provides free health screenings in Lake County. To sign up for the hike or learn more about the group, see ¶

• Home Study with On-Site Classes • WASC Accredited


Call today! (707) 463-7080

Like Us On Facebook

April 2017

MendoLakeFamilyLife 29

Humor Break

A as in Awkward

Now I’m making devil eyes and shaking my head at Buck and Emerson to not say a word when August chimed in— “She said, ‘How old are you?’”

When Kids Won’t Zip It By Holly Hester


his story could also be called “Children Make Awkward Situations More Awkward.”

Okay, so here we are at the feed store once again. There’s a woman that works here that is one of the toughest, most grizzled-looking “seniors” I’ve ever seen. She could give those old ladies in the last Mad Max movie a run for their money. She’s probably in her 60s, has a long, grey ponytail, the forearms of Popeye, and the gaze of Clint Eastwood. I imagine that she spends her free time wrestling alligators and throwing cement blocks through the windows of assisted-living facilities. I’ve often wondered how long I’d last in a fight with her. I’m taller and younger, but I bet she bites. She probably also has a knife in her boot. My only hope would be to wind her because, as you can probably guess, she’s a smoker. Anyway, this woman was helping us put chicks in a box, and we were talking about different types of chicks and feed, etc.—you know, feed-store banter. But I couldn’t stop staring at her, fascinated, wondering about her life. And I meant to say, “How old are the chicks?” Except 30 MendoLakeFamilyLife

I was so preoccupied with this woman’s possible history as a trick horse rider in an old-timey rodeo that instead I said— “How old are you?” There was stunned silence as I realized what I had said. My kids looked at me, shocked. The woman

August, being 5 years old, thinks everyone is 100. Either you’re a kid or you’re 100. didn’t answer. She just kept putting chicks in a box. I was hopeful for a moment that she hadn’t heard me. This is the part where children make awkward situations more awkward. Emerson said, “Momma, that’s rude.” I shook my head vigorously in a “please stop talking” motion. Emerson stopped talking, but apparently Buck did not see (or more likely, chose to ignore) the vigorous head shake, so he joined in. “Yeah, Mom, that’s so rude.”

I then made devil eyes at Buck, but it didn’t matter. The woman looked up and said, “What’s your mom being rude about?”

The woman fixed her Clint Eastwood gaze on me. Great. She’s going to kill me. She’s going to whip that knife out of her boot and shank me right in front of my children. There’s going to be blood all over those baby chicks. Then, to make matters worse, August added, “I think you’re about 100.” Now August, being 5 years old, thinks everyone is 100. Either you’re a kid or you’re 100. There’s no in between. August has inadvertently insulted scores of adults by asking them if they’re 100. I’ve watched the happy faces of people in their 30s, 40s, and 50s crumble after August gets through with them. The woman looked down at August. Then, much to my surprise, she burst out laughing—a loud, booming cackle of a belly laugh. Baby chicks scattered. Other feed-store shoppers turned. Her laugh eventually turned into a hacking smoker’s cough that scared everyone within a two-block radius, but still, it was a wonderful way to pull out of an awkward situation. With children around, you’re not always this lucky. I like this woman even more now, and I’m adding “saloon owner” to my list of her possible former occupations. ¶ Holly Hester lives in Sebastopol and writes about life on her blog, Riot Ranch. Find her book, Escape from Ugly Mom Island!, on Amazon.

April 2017

Learn to Dance

PAPER TIGERS One high school’s unlikely success story


Paper Tigers follows a year in the life of an alternative high school that has radically changed its approach to disciplining its students, becoming a promising model for how to break the cycles of poverty, violence and disease that affect families.

April 26, 5:30–7:30 pm

Classes for all Ages & Levels from 3-Adult


Cornelison Event Center: Clearlake


Learn to identify what toxic stress is, describe its impact on the community & evaluate how we can work together to effectively address this important issue.

April 26, 9 am–4:30 pm

“Where Dreams to Dance Come True” 205 South State Street, Ukiah • 463-2290

The Brick Hall, 16374 Main St., Lower Lake FREE Tickets

May Faire

mendo lake


#1 local resource for for 25 years local families

magazine • web • email • events

Don’t Let them Grow Up without Participating in a May Pole Dance! Join Us for Games, Food, Festivities & Fun!

Saturday, May 6th

9:30 am to 1:30 pm • Entrance is FREE! Visit 6280 Third Street • Calpella 707-485-8719

April 2017

MendoLakeFamilyLife 31

s rt u h It t i a w to Because pain doesn’t wait for appointments, we’ve made our schedule work for you. When you need expert care quickly for minor injuries or illness, we’re here for you. Now adults and children can be treated by our providers at Redwood Medical Clinic. Come to us for non-life threatening illnesses and injuries—from the flu and asthma to broken bones, cuts and scrapes—and we can take care of you today. Just walk right in—we’re close to home or work. And no appointment is necessary.

Call 707.459.6115 to learn more about conditions we treat and insurance plans accepted.


Open Monday to Friday 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Located at 3 Marcela Drive, Suite C (In front of the new hospital)

Mendo Lake Family Life May 2017  
Mendo Lake Family Life May 2017