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Free Justin Bieber pullout

Prom Make memories part of history

Special Needs Vocational training

for teens with disabilities Bracing little legs for happier lives

Teen Suicide The Asya Patton story inspires local awareness campaign

What parents should know


From The FEBRUARY 2013

A local teen is spreading the word on heart health

february 2013 savvy kids



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contents February 2013


from the heart

A local teen is spreading the word that heart health is important for all ages

8 Black History Month 13 All Dressed Up 14 Friendship Breakup 16 Valentine’s Day Gift Guide 20 Healthy Heart Tips 22 The Asya Patton Story 24 Cyberbullying and Teen Suicide 26 Vocational Training for Teens with Disabilities 28 Bracing Little Legs for Happier Lives 30 Vaccine Can Fight Cancer Later in Life 32 FREE Justin Bieber Pullout 36 Pennywise 38 Pop Topics 40 B ook of the Month

ON THE COVER: Amber Freer Photographed by Patrick Jones

App of the Month

48 Calendar of Events 50 Guide to Private Schools 52 Single Parent Scholarship 62 Savvy Science 4 | savvy kids february 2013

Savvy Kids would like to express a special thanks to all those who contributed to our cover look. Hair courtesy of Megan Whitehead at Joel’s in Little Rock. Makeup courtesy of Vannette Vititow at Barbara Jean in Little Rock. Dress provided by Buffie’s All the Rage in Little Rock. And, MertinsDykeHome in Little Rock for letting us shoot our cover photos there.

12 Prom Oral history projects preserve prom memories for a lifetime

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Letter from the editor


s February approaches, our minds naturally turn to matters of the heart. In this month’s cover story, 17-year-old Amber Freer discusses her own heart health issues, her dedication to educating others about the importance of heart health at any age and what it’s like to be a part of the American Heart Association’s 2013 Central Arkansas Survivor Gallery. I had a great time getting to know Amber and hearing her story. She’s such a sweet, laid-back young woman. In this issue of Savvy Kids, we focus on many of the events and concerns facing today’s teenagers. The tragic story of 15-year-old Asya Patton’s death illustrates the impact of cyberbullying on teen depression and suicide. And, as high school graduation nears, many teens with disabilities and their parents wonder what happens next. We discuss some of the programs available to help prepare these teens for the next phase in life, whether it’s continuing education or entering the workforce.

Photo by Brian Chilson

The prom season is upon us, and our story on creating an oral history project can help preserve prom memories for a lifetime. Plus, it’s Valentine’s Day, so we have an adorable gift guide full of ideas for sweethearts of all ages. Of course, we have our monthly features, like Savvy Arts, Little Hero, Big Heart, a calendar full of great events and a cool project provided by the Museum of Discovery. There’s even a little surprise on page 32. Be sure to check out our website ( and “like” us on Facebook and follow us on Pinterest. This will keep you up-to-date on the latest community events and general happenings at Savvy Kids.

publisher Michelle Miller editor Erica Sweeney digital media editor Meredith Martin-Moats digital media producer Bryan Moats editorial art director Patrick Jones senior account executive Tamara Adkins account executive Erin Holland advertising sales assistant Kelly Lyles, production manager Weldon Wilson advertising coordinators Roland Gladden, Kelly Schlachter Carr, Tracy Whitaker, graphic artists Kai Caddy, Rafael Mendez, Bryan Moats, Patrick Jones, Mike Spain photographers Brian Chilson, Patrick Jones controller Weldon Wilson accounts payable Angie Fambrough it director Robert Curfman billing/collections Linda Phillips circulation director Anitra Hickman

Have a great February! Follow our Pins on Pinterest

Follow us on Twitter

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Erica Sweeney, Editor


inned It!

Melt leftover bits of crayons to make these festive Valentine’s window hangings. Find out how at 6 | savvy kids february 2013


Check out the Savvy Kids Pinterest page for fun activities, delicious treats and more. This month, we have pinned some adorable Valentine’s Day projects and sweet treats! Find these pins and more at

Even the littlest Valentines will love decorating these cute and delicious marshmallow treats. Find the recipe at

This garland is a fun and easy way to decorate for Valentine’s Day. Step-by-step instructions are available at

These adorable heart-shaped dog cookies are sure to make anyone smile. Find the recipe at

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Black History Month Students Put Their Knowledge to the Test By Erica Sweeney

The Arkansas Black History Quiz Bowl will give students in grades 6-12 the opportunity to put their knowledge of African-American achievement to the test, said organizer Frank Bateman.

“Fighting for what is right is not just an African-American ideal, but an American ideal. The story of African-Americans in our state mirrors the story of all Americans.”

Students from all over the state will compete in teams of three at the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center in Little Rock on Feb. 16. The top two teams in each division (grades 6-8 and 9-12) will advance to the championship at the Mid-South Black Expo in Little Rock on Feb. 23.

In addition to the quiz bowl, the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center, the state’s only African-American history museum, is hosting several family events in February to celebrate Black History Month. These events are free and open to the public.

In its eighth year, the quiz bowl began as an educational tool for young people to learn about African-American history, a lot of which is missing from school history books, Bateman said. The event also includes as much Arkansas history as possible.

•A  night of spoken word poetry featuring local talent and a performance by nationally renowned poet Sunni Patterson. Feb. 2 at 6 p.m. •L  ecture from Dr. Oliver Keith Baker, originally from McGehee, Ark. and currently an endowed university professor of Physics at Hampton University and, jointly, a staff physicist at the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility. Baker conducts research in the physics of elementary particles and nuclei at CERN in Geneva, Switzerland, and at Jefferson Lab in Virginia. Feb. 20 at 10 a.m. •T  he Governor’s Office Black History Month Program celebrates AfricanAmerican achievement in business. Feb. 21 at 10 a.m. •F  amily Movie Night features a showing of “Remember the Titans” starring Denzel Washington. Feb. 22 at 6 p.m. •D  r. Irma Routen presents her Little Rock area children’s choir in concert. Feb. 28 at 10 a.m.

Bateman came up with the quiz bowl concept while working with the Arkansas Martin Luther King, Jr. Commission. He said educating kids and teens about black history is his passion. To better understand the world around them, young people must learn all history, said Elvon Reed, director of education at the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center. “As our country becomes more diverse and remains a beacon to many in the world, it is more important than ever that our young people know how far this country has come in being a great land of opportunity,” Reed said. “As we look at citizens in countries like Syria and Egypt, fighting for what we have, it is so important that children understand that their forbearers fought a similar battle. 8 | savvy kids february 2013

For more information about these events or for a guided tour, contact the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center at (501) 683-3593 or visit www.mosaictemplarscenter. com. The deadline to register for the quiz bowl is Feb. 11. Email arblackhistoryquiz@ or call (501) 913-2136 to sign up.

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little hero

Big Heart

The story of how one young girl is helping others with heart defects. By Erica Sweeney Through volunteering at Arkansas Heart Hospital over the past few months, 13-year-old Joi Hood has learned a lot about herself. Hood was born with a heart defect and had heart surgery when she was four months old. The surgery left a scar on her chest, which she says has always made her self-conscious. But, meeting other heart patients through her volunteer work and hearing their stories has made her more comfortable with the scar, she says. The experience has also helped her better understand what she went through as a baby, and what her mom, Janet Hood, also a heart patient, has experienced. Meeting patients and “giving back” to those that have helped her and her family are what she says she has enjoyed most about volunteering. “I’ve learned no matter who you are or if you had heart surgery, you can still achieve anything,” Joi Hood says. “You’re helping others while learning yourself.”

Photo by Brian Chilson

Hood’s volunteer work has put her one step closer to achieving the Girl Scout Silver Award, which requires a service project. She says serving the Heart Hospital was her first choice, and she hopes to complete the required 50 volunteer service hours by the end of the month. The Silver Award is the highest level a Girl Scout Cadette (grades 6-8) can earn. Hood, an eighth-grader at Dunbar Gifted and Talented International Studies Middle School in Little Rock, says, by ninth grade, she hopes to reach the Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest level for grades 9-12.

Volunteering at Arkansas Heart Hospital has taught Joi Hood the importance of “giving back.” Her volunteer work is also helping her rise through the ranks of Girl Scouts.

Established in 1997, Arkansas Heart Hospital is a nationally recognized and award-winning hospital dedicated to the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular disease serving over 20,000 patients per year throughout the state. Arkansas Heart Hospital was the first heart hospital in Arkansas and only the second in the nation when it was established. For more information about volunteering at the hospital, visit

“Joi is a great picture of someone who not only wants to serve, she wants to make a difference,” says Vickie Wingfield, Arkansas Heart Hospital community relations director. “Joi has a story to share. Her story is an encouragement to other young people with congenital heart defects or any kind of chronic health issue to find a place to get involved and live life to the fullest.” Hood has spent many Saturdays and part of her holiday break helping out at the hospital’s events and stuffing envelopes. She also shadowed Shannon Hendrix, Heart Hospital director of nutrition services, where she says she learned “why it’s important to keep your heart healthy and eat healthy foods.” Hood says giving back to the community is important to her and plans to continue volunteering throughout her life. When she grows up, she says she wants to be a computer technician, dancer or teacher, and her favorite school subjects are English and computers. In addition to school and community service, she also does ballet, tap, jazz and hip-hop at Little Rock School of Dance. In May, her dance team will compete at Disney World in Florida. Janet Hood says volunteering at Arkansas Heart Hospital has been a “wonderful experience” for her daughter and she’s proud of Joi’s dedication. “I love what the experience has given her,” Janet Hood says. “She sees what she’s gone through, and it’s made her grow.”

10 | savvy kids february 2013

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| 11


prom memories part of history Record an Oral History to Preserve Every Detail and Emotion for a Lifetime By Erica Sweeney As teenagers everywhere begin their prom preparations, they are creating memories. While photographs capture snippets of these memories, an oral history project will ensure that every detail, feeling and emotion of prom lives on forever. An oral history is a story told by the person who has lived it and recorded for preservation. This creates a “snapshot of the times” that is “valuable from a historical point of view,” said David Stricklin, head of the Butler Center for Arkansas Studies. “Oral history is a great tool for collecting social history,” including aspects of everyday life, such as clothing, food and events, he said. Studying events like prom is important in social history because it identifies cultural trends and paradigm shifts, Stricklin said. For example, when he attended prom in the early 1970s, the societal norm was to attend with a date of the opposite sex. He said the goal at the time was for everyone to look the same and “conform.” A lot had changed by the early 2000s, when his daughter went to prom with a group of friends, some even wearing fairy wings, he said. “If social historians had started prom oral history projects in the 1950s, there would be a gigantic database tracking evidence of growing freedoms in social events in this country,” he said. Oral history projects preserve all prom memories, even the smaller details and emotions that may get a little fuzzy over time. While most prom-goers will never forget their dress or date, memories of the excitement of getting ready for prom or the energy of dancing with friends may not be as sharp. 12 | savvy kids february 2013

What You Need All that is needed to create an oral history project is a recording device and an interviewer. Most smartphones have built-in voice recorders, and several voice recording apps, like the free StoryCorps app, are also available. The Butler Center also rents recording booths for free. Individuals who record their stories at the center receive a CD of the recording but must consent to leaving a copy in the archives for historical preservation, Stricklin said. Interviewers should encourage the subject to talk as if they were strangers, he said. Interviewees should be honest and include as many details – good or bad, big or small – as possible, and think about what people in the future might want to know, he said. The person conducting the interview should be someone the teenager can easily talk to, he said. If a parent is doing the interview, Stricklin suggests encouraging communication and not “shutting them down” while they are talking. The goal, he said, is to “get someone to say what they want to say.” Stricklin said interviewers should discuss aspects of prom that would particularly interest social historians, such as: 1. Preparations Discuss where the prom was held, who decorated, who chaperoned and other aspects of prom planning.

4. Previous Knowledge Discuss previous prom stories that the subject has heard from family or friends. 5. Emotions Describe the feelings at every moment of prom – getting ready, being at the prom and returning home – and be as honest as possible to include even the not-so-positive. Get Motivated Nationally, there has been a push to preserve any aspect of social history through StoryCorps, a nonprofit dedicated to providing all Americans the opportunity to record, share and preserve their stories, Stricklin said. To get teens excited about participating, Stricklin suggests parents simply say, “just humor me,” and explain how they wish they had recordings of a grandparent or other relative from the past. “You’re fighting against young people who don’t think their lives are part of history,” he said. “I want kids to know their lives are something bigger. They may not think it’s important, but future historians will. “I don’t know anyone who’s ever been sorry they did something like this. A weird interview or a short one or an awkward one – they’re all better than one never done.”

2. Mechanics Discuss transportation, decorations, conventions, music and trends.

Stricklin said to his knowledge no one has done a prom oral history at the Butler Center, but “we would love to have them in the archive. Prom is part of the history of everyday life. It matters to people.”

3. Clothing Discuss details about the dress, tuxedo, hair, accessories, makeup and more, as well as what it was like to shop and where items were purchased.

For tips on creating an oral history project, visit the StoryCorps website at or the Butler Center for Arkansas Studies website at www.butlercenter. org. To reserve a recording booth, call (501) 320-5700.

all dressed up That Prom Girl provides dresses to those in need Prom is an exciting event for high schoolers, but the cost of what all goes into creating a memorable prom can really add up. One local organization is working to alleviate part of the financial burden of prom, by providing dresses to families in need. In 2009, Cynthia Harris and Subrena Howard formed That Prom Girl to ensure that all teenage girls have the opportunity to attend prom. That Prom Girl accepts donations of new and used prom dresses and redistributes them to girls whose families cannot afford to buy dresses for them, Harris said. “If we can take off the cost of the dress,” Harris said. “That takes away a hardship and makes us feel good.” Harris and Howard came up with the idea after each had purchased prom dresses for friends and neighbors, who otherwise would not have been able to attend prom. “Prom is that event that every girl looks forward to,” Howard said. “We’d hate to see anyone left out of prom.” Many of the dresses donated to That Prom Girl are brand new, Harris said. Donations have come from local dress shops and individuals. While they accept any donated dress, she said they are most in need of plus sizes. They also take donated shoes, jewelry and accessories. In the past, Harris said nail salons and hair stylists have even donated their services to help girls complete their prom look. “We’ve been so fortunate that so many people have donated,” Harris said. Individuals who receive dresses are allowed to keep them; however, they are encouraged to re-donate the dresses to continue the cycle of giving, Harris said. Dresses are distributed through events in Little Rock and other parts of the state, usually held in late March or early April, Harris said. This year, they plan to hold an event for the first time in the Delta area of southeastern Arkansas, she said. Dates and locations were not confirmed as of this writing. Right now, Harris and Howard said they have closets full of dresses ready to give away. Hundreds of girls have received prom dresses since That Prom Girl began, Harris said. Seeing how much they are helping local families makes them “feel special,” Howard said. For more information about That Prom Girl’s events or to donate, call (501) 416-0031 or (501) 416-9957.

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When friends part ways By Jane Dennis Katie and Megan met on the kindergarten playground and were immediate best friends. They shared giggles and secrets, sleepovers and a love of snickerdoodles. They went from first grade to seventh grade in a flash and were side by side the whole time. They were inseparable. Then, something changed. Megan made the basketball team and discovered a new circle of friends. Not-so-athletic Katie felt she was left on the outside of the circle. Megan began spending more and more time with her new friends. Her interests and activities didn’t ever seem to include Katie. Feeling hurt and left out, Katie cloistered herself in her room at home and turned to books and music for solace. Megan and Katie were never again as close as they had been back in those carefree kindergarten days. When things change and friends part ways, it’s hard on everyone. Parents need to be prepared to help their child survive a friendship breakup. “Each developmental stage is unique,” says Janet Breen, a licensed professional counselor with Methodist Family Health, a nonprofit organization that provides psychiatric and behavioral health care to children and families in Arkansas. “Parents should recognize and be sensitive to the importance of peers in each stage of their child’s life and how it affects their self-esteem, identity and choices.”

Instead, recognize that your child can discover his or her own answers to how to respond and how to act. Appropriate questions might include: • How has this affected you? • How has it affected the other person? • How does this fit with your idea of what a friendship is all about? • Should all friendships last forever? • What do you see as your alternatives? Only after you have listened to your child’s responses should you offer to share your ideas if your child is interested. Be a good role model. Show your children how friendships should function by having good friends around you who are trustworthy, loyal, fun, and who share your values and goals. Invite your child’s friends over. To encourage friendships, get your children to spend time with their friends at your home. You can be sure they’re safe. You can help your child build relationships in an environment you feel good about. Plus, you can supervise and observe (from a distance), and then ask questions about the relationships you see. Get out more! Encourage your adolescent or youth to participate in extracurricular activities like sports, music, a part-time job, a local club or society, or something where they can develop new relationships with like-minded people.

When faced with turmoil and change in your child’s friendships, parents should consider these suggestions: Listen. When a child is in emotional pain or distress over the loss of a special friendship, just having someone to listen is the best therapy. Parents need to be prepared to be pushed away as a first reaction. But don’t give up. Find opportunities for one-on-one time, such as sharing a long walk or a baking project in the kitchen. Let your child know that you are willing to listen to anything they want to share when they are ready to share it.

Monitor technology. Mobile phones, Facebook, instant messaging and technology can be good and bad for young friendships. By keeping an eye on what your child is sending and receiving (non-intrusively), you can help your child make good decisions. Plus, if managed the right way, it can give you plenty to talk about together.

Ask questions – the right way. Avoid the temptation of offering lots of advice and pouring out decades of your own wisdom and experiences, or launching the next great inquisition. Most children resist this approach.

Jane Dennis is director of communications for Methodist Family Health. Call (501) 661-0720 or visit for more information on these and other parenting issues.

14 | savvy kids february 2013

Children need positive friendships for healthy development. Parents who offer support and guidance while encouraging increasing independence will weather the storm of friendship breakups most successfully.

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G s i f ’ e t s n i F t r n e om l a V

theheart This dainty 14-karat gold heart necklace is perfect for your nearest and dearest. Available at Box Turtle, 2616 Kavanaugh, Little Rock; (501) 661-1167. $343.

Who can resist a heart-shaped brownie dipped in white or milk chocolate? Available individually or packaged together like a box of chocolates at Knight’s Super Foods, 906 S. Pine St., Cabot; (501) 843-8101.

16 | savvy kids february 2013

Iced shortbread cookies are the perfect sweet treat. Available at Dempsey Bakery, 323 S. Cross St., Little Rock; (501) 375-2257.

These beanies will have your little Valentine looking stylish. Available at Smith-Caldwell Drug Store, 414 N. Main, Benton; (501) 315-7700. $23 each.

➷ Store your favorite goodies in these cute wrist purses. Available at the Knowledge Tree, 825 N. University Ave., Little Rock; (501) 663-2877. $10.99.

➷ Keep your loved ones close to your heart with these adorable lockets. Available at Box Turtle, 2616 Kavanaugh, Little Rock; (501) 661-1167. $25-$35.

Fill these jewelry boxes with your favorite goodies, like candy, lip gloss and other fun things. Available at Box Turtle, 2616 Kavanaugh, Little Rock; (501) 661-1167. Jewelry boxes, $12.50; other prices vary.

These versatile little purses come in many colors and designs and make a great gift. Available at Smith-Caldwell Drug Store, 414 N. Main, Benton; (501) 315-7700. $20.95 each.

Red velvet macarons are perfect for Valentines of any age. Available at The Blue Cake Company, 14710 Cantrell Road, Little Rock; (501) 868-7771.

These cake push pops are the perfect sweet treat for little Valentines. Available in cake or brownie with butter cream frosting at Knight’s Super Foods, 906 S. Pine St. in Cabot; (501) 843-8101. february 2013 savvy kids

| 17

“I want to use my story to help others and to raise awareness that heart disease is not just for older people.” This is the message 17-year-old Amber Freer hopes to spread as a member of the 2013 Central Arkansas Survivor Gallery, a group of 10 women of all ages who have been affected by heart disease or stroke. Freer said she is “so excited” to be a part of such a “wonderful” group of women: “It’s such an honor and a good opportunity to share my story.” Women selected for the Survivor Gallery “represent a variety of heart issues, ages and cultures,” said Alexis Sims, communications director of the American Heart Association in Little Rock. This year’s group features survivors age 5 to 91, who are “living productive lives after having a heart attack, stroke or other heart condition,” she said. Members of the Survivor Gallery were unveiled at a reception at the State Capitol on Jan. 30. Survivors featured in the gallery also will attend the 2013 Central Arkansas Go Red for Women Luncheon on May 15 at the Peabody Hotel in Little Rock, Sims said.

A Survivor’s Story Freer’s story of survival began when she was 14, and noticed her energy level declining and other changes in her health. She has always been an active teenager, who exercised regularly, and loved cheerleading, hiking and jogging. Suddenly, doing simple exercises or even walking up stairs made her short of breath. While just sitting, her heart rate would become erratic, and she started experiencing ocular migraines, she said. “I was tired all the time and found it hard to keep up with workouts,” Freer said. “I thought I was just being lazy so I started working out more.” But, as her symptoms continued, she knew something must be wrong.



Local teen is spreading the word that heart health is important for all ages By Erica Sweeney 18 | savvy kids february 2013

“The symptoms were real and were affecting me in a real way,” she said, expressing her frustrations at the time. She said she went to “every doctor under the sun,” but no one could find anything wrong with her. Finally after visiting Dr. David Mego, a cardiologist at Arkansas Heart Hospital, and undergoing a “bubble study,” a type of sonogram of the heart, Freer got some answers. The test revealed a tiny hole in her heart, which she’d had since birth. “It was incredible how something so tiny could be ruining my whole life,” Freer said. “The solution to my problem was seemingly so simple, yet it affected me so immediately and greatly.”

After undergoing a procedure to repair the hole when she was 15, she said she immediately “felt 100% better.” Her energy came back, and she went right back to enjoying her favorite activities. Today, she remains as healthy as ever.

From the Heart Now, Freer, a junior at Little Rock Central High School, is dedicated to raising awareness about heart disease and that heart health is important at any age. Before her own heart issues, Freer said she thought being affected at such a young age “seemed unrealistic.”

“It was incredible how something so tiny could be ruining my whole life...”

Last year, Freer was selected as a 2012 American Heart Association Sweetheart. This program is for 10th-grade girls and educates them on the importance of health care, heart healthy activities and volunteerism. The program was created in 1998 to support the annual Heart Ball and American Heart Association. The 2012 class included more than 50 girls, Sims said. As a Sweetheart, Freer said she learned CPR and a lot about heart health. She also did volunteer work at the Cardiovascular Intensive Care Unit at Baptist Health Medical Center, where she says she enjoyed talking to patients and making them “feel comfortable.” She also raised more than $4,000 for research on cardiovascular disease. As a Sweetheart, she said she also enjoyed meeting the other girls, making lifelong friends and getting dressed up for the Heart Ball. Last summer, Freer worked at Foot and Ankle Associates of Central

Arkansas, where she said she got the opportunity to watch an ankle reconstruction procedure, which “fascinated” her. This experience, along with what she learned as a Sweetheart and volunteering have made her realize that she would like to have a career in health care one day, she said. Freer said her mom, Paula Freer, a nurse, who works in the Central Scheduling Department at the Arkansas Heart Hospital Clinic, has always wanted her to go into the medical field.

Because Freer’s grandmother had a heart attack and the nature of her mom’s job, Freer said her family has always been involved with the Heart Association. Each year, she said they participate in the annual Heart Walk, usually held in April. Freer, who describes herself as independent and self-motivated, said before becoming a Sweetheart, she volunteered in her community only if it was required by school or other activity. Now, she said, giving back to the community has taught her a lot about herself and is “something that’s going to stay with me forever.” “I’ve learned it’s important to share your struggle,” she said. “It’s good to reach out to others, if you have something that can help someone else. It makes you a better person. “There’s so much you can do through raising awareness. It taught me to get out of my comfort zone. It’s good when you can give a little of your time.”

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February is Heart Month and a perfect time to talk about taking care of your heart! How healthy is your heart? Did you know that heart disease is the No. 1 cause of death in Arkansas? Among Arkansas children ages 0-5, 8% are obese. For children in grades 9-12, more than 15% are overweight. These are alarming statistics, but making lifestyle changes early can help to lower this number. What is heart disease? The heart is the center of the cardiovascular system. Through the body’s blood vessels, the heart pumps blood to all of the body’s cells. The blood carries oxygen, which the cells need. Cardiovascular disease is a group of problems that occur when the heart and blood vessels aren’t working the way they should. Here are some of the problems that go along with cardiovascular disease: • Arteriosclerosis - Also referred to as hardening of the arteries, arteriosclerosis means the arteries become thickened and are no longer flexible. • Atherosclerosis – A buildup of cholesterol and fat that makes arteries narrower so less blood can flow through. Those buildups are called plaque. • Heart attack – This is when a blood clot or other blockage cuts blood flow to a part of the heart. • Stroke – This is when part of the brain doesn’t get enough blood due to a clot or burst blood vessel. While heart disease is not a major cause of death among children and teenagers, if healthy habits are developed early on, it could possibly prevent issues down the road. There are certain risk factors that play an important role in

a person’s chance of developing heart disease. Some risk factors can be changed, treated or modified, and some cannot. Family history and a condition that develops secondary to another illness or disease are examples of risk factors that can’t be changed. However, risk factors that we do have control over include: • High blood pressur • High cholesterol • Smoking • Obesity • Physical Activity So how can you get your child off to the right start? First, help him or her to maintain a healthy body weight. This can be done through monitoring food intake and increasing physical activity. Here are a few more specific tips to a healthier lifestyle: • Make at least half your plate whole grain • Make the other half of your plate fruits and vegetables • Choose more calcium-rich foods, such as low-fat or fat-free milk and yogurt, and lower fat cheeses • Go lean with the protein – choose seafood, beans, peas or nuts • Limit salt intake • Drink at least 8-10 glasses of water a day • Watch portion sizes • Exercise at least an hour every day Parents have to set the example. Children should be involved with grocery shopping and meal preparation. Make it fun for everyone! And get outside and exercise together as a family! It will do your heart some good! Shannon Hendrix is director of nutrition services at Arkansas Heart Hospital. For more information about these healthy lifestyle tips, visit

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| 21


Asya Patton Story

Project is raising awareness about teen suicide and the impact of social media By Erica Sweeney

Amber Patton describes her 15-year-old daughter, Asya, as an outgoing teenager, who loved playing basketball, shopping and connecting with her friends via social media. While Patton knew her daughter had experienced bullying from girls at school, she never realized the extent until it was too late.

“brush everything off.”

When Asya took her own life one day after school last November, Patton said she was in a state of disbelief, and even denial at first.

Earlier in this school year, Asya moved in with her grandparents in Warren and transferred to high school there to get a “fresh start,” Patton said. “She started doing good at Warren. The move was the best thing for her.”

Since Asya’s death, Patton said she has received an outpouring of emotion from parents and teens, all sharing similar stories. She said she knew she had to do something to try to prevent this kind of tragedy from happening to another family. Patton has teamed up with Shauntae Swinton to form the Asya Patton Project dedicated to raising awareness about cyberbullying, teen depression and suicide. Swinton did not know the Patton family, until she heard about Asya’s death from her 14-year-old son, Braylon, who knew Asya Patton casually. She said the story compelled her to take action and so she reached out to Amber Patton.

Understanding social media’s impact

“Then she would get in a slump,” Patton said. “But I felt like everyone needs some personal time. I didn’t know it was to the point that she felt that alone.”

When she died, Asya’s Twitter account contained more than 40,000 messages, Patton said. She said Asya’s last few tweets just before her death show her state of mind: “I love you mommy,” “K my eyes burnin. Bye yall” and “Said our goodbyes, it just got real.” Many teenagers need help “managing their feelings” and do not know how to “utilize their voice” when they have a problem, Swinton said. So, they turn to social media as their outlet and often their sole means of communication, she said. Both Swinton and Patton say teens sometimes don’t understand the impact that posting something on a social media site can have. Certain posts can be embarrassing and contribute to depression, because many teens’ problemsolving skills are not fully developed, Swinton said.

What led to Asya’s suicide is still unclear, but her mom believes it all began last April. Asya, then a student at Sylvan Hills High School in Sherwood, got into a fight with some girls at school over a boy, Patton said. The girls began threatening Asya at school and bullying her on Twitter and Facebook.

Through working with the foundation, Swinton said she has been surprised how casually teens discuss suicide. In fact, after her death, a few of Asya’s friends said she had previously attempted suicide by taking pills, but, Patton said, no one told her or anyone else who might have been able to help.

Asya’s grades began slipping and she seemed withdrawn. Patton tried talking to Asya about her problems and said she would only open up briefly, and then

“I’m not sure if they really process that death is a permanent fix for a temporary problem,” Swinton said. “Do they think it’s a game?”

22 | savvy kids february 2013

Pay attention to the signs

Patton said teens often “feel like they can’t talk to anyone,” and that’s why they turn to social media. She urges parents to pay more attention to, and even limit, their teens’ social media use. This is something she said she regrets not doing with Asya. Swinton said many parents do not pay close enough attention to what their teens are doing online. She suggests parents keep the lines of communication open, and not “shut kids down or misuse their trust.” Now, after understanding more about the role social media can play with teen depression through the Asya Patton Project, Swinton said, “I follow my son on everything.” The ultimate goal of the project is to provide the tools needed to identify and assist teens who may be victims of cyberbullying or suffering from depression, Swinton said. The project is holding monthly Teen Summit meetings for teens to discuss these issues with an expert to help and answer questions, Swinton said. She said she hopes to soon bring the discussion into local schools and churches. “Parents are not seeing the signs,” said Patton, who also urges parents to take notice if their teen seems distant at times. “We want teens to know that there is someone out there but they have to reach out. I want them to know that someone cares.”

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Patton said the past few months have been an “emotional roller coaster,” with good days and bad days. For now, she’s hoping her story will help save others. Visit or for more information about getting involved with the project.


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Social media has brought bullying to a new level and become a major factor in depression among teens, and in extreme cases, suicide, said Amy Freer, a licensed clinical social worker and residential therapist at Pinnacle Pointe Hospital in Little Rock. And, it’s only getting worse. Cyberbulling “permeates kids’ entire existence,” because it follows them home from school and onto the web, leaving them feeling rejected, isolated and devastated, she said. This is particularly true for ages 13-15, when fitting in is the No.1 priority. So, what can parents do to ensure their teen does not become a victim of cyberbullying? Freer said it has to start with a discussion about what is appropriate and inappropriate to post online and how to treat all people with kindness, tolerance and empathy, rather than aggression and hostility. Parents should also monitor social media use by first explaining the concern and then asking their teen’s opinion on reasonable limits. This makes them part of the decision. Parents also must encourage real life human interaction, not just cyber friends, she said. Because the frontal lobe, or decision-making part of the brain, isn’t fully developed until age 25, teens rely on emotions to make decisions, Freer said. This is why they are so affected by posts on social media sites, and why such emotions can lead to depression and sometimes suicide, she said. “That’s why everything is so emotionally fueled and sensitive, instead of weighing out what’s important,” she said. “Teens are not fully capable of really thinking it all through.”

cyberbullying and Teen Suicide: What parents should know By Erica Sweeney

Suicide Warning Signs

Freer said many of the teens she sees at Pinnacle Pointe “don’t seem to understand the value of life” or grasp the permanence of suicide. She said she’s been surprised that death and suicide are “right up there as a solution” to a problem, instead of learning to cope. According to Freer, a mental-health professional should be contacted if someone you know displays any of these suicide warning signs: • Prolonged periods of isolation, sadness or irritability • Drastic mood swings • Giving away possessions • Writing, talking or drawing about death • Making passive statements about suicide or not mattering • Preoccupation with weapons • Doing things out of the ordinary If teens make suicide threats, pay close attention to what they have access to, like pills, guns or other weapons, Freer said. To help children deal with difficult situations, parents must be available without being judgmental and let children know that what happens to them is important. Kids and teens need to know their parents will love them and be on their side no matter what, she said. For more information, visit the federal government’s anti-bullying website at or the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention at

24 | savvy kids february 2013

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Vocational training for teens with disabilities By Erica Sweeney

As high school graduation approaches, parents of teenagers with physical, developmental or learning disabilities may wonder about the next phase of their child’s life. Many local organizations, programs and services are available to help these teens transition to adulthood and into the workforce. According to Linda Rogers, Easter Seals Arkansas vice president of programs, “Transition to employment opportunities for teens of all abilities begins with a foundation of basic work skills.” The first step for parents, she said, is to have a firm understanding of their teen’s interests and abilities, and then keep an open mind, while exploring all options. “Examine all the different ways your child can fit in and the potential for their future,” Rogers said. “Talk about their interests and plan for their abilities. Reinforce those abilities and start them somewhere where they can be successful.” Vocational training programs for teens with disabilities exist within government agencies, community organizations and educational facilities.

Starting Early At ACCESS Academy, a private-pay school for students with physical, developmental and learning disabilities, vocational training starts as early as preschool, said Becca Green, the school’s director of marketing and communications. Early on, students focus on developing independence and responsibility. Career education, job shadowing, money management, time management and following directions are incorporated by the time students reach the young adult program, she said. On Feb. 5, ACCESS is hosting a free presentation, “Turning Point: Life After High School,” where representatives from government agencies, community providers and educational institutions will discuss topics, such as transition, vocational services, job placement, training programs and much more. For 26 | savvy kids february 2013

more information or to RSVP, call (501) 217-8600. The Arkansas Department of Workforce Services administers several state and federal programs to help teens ease into the job market. DWS reaches out to high schools through a partnership with the U.S. Dept. of Labor and the Office of Disability Employment Policy. Disability Resource Coordinators work with high school students to establish job clubs, where they discuss issues like communication, networking, enthusiasm, attitude, teamwork, problem solving, money management, establishing goals, professionalism and transitioning into the workforce, said Kimberly Friedman, DWS communications director. The Arkansas Disability Employment Initiative, a federal grant administered by DWS, assists young people age 14-24 in finding “careers to be selfsustaining,” said Friedman. “If we reach students early and help them plan, they’ll have an opportunity waiting for them,” Friedman said. “We want self-sustaining, happy individuals in careers that are meaningful. Teens with disabilities may face different barriers to employment. We want to help overcome those barriers. There are opportunities out there for them.” Another program available in high schools is the Arkansas Transition Project, administered through the Arkansas Department of Career Education’s Arkansas Rehabilitation Services (ARS) division. Counselors work directly with high school students with disabilities, said Kimberly Clark, ARS transition counselor. “We work hand in hand with the school staff to enrich the lives of students and help them develop a plan of action after graduation,” she said, explaining that this plan may be for education or directly into the workforce. ARS counselors work with students to determine interests, goals, strengths and weaknesses. They also identify community resources, job opportunities and other resources that can help in the transition from high school to adulthood.

Planning for the Next Chapter In early January, Easter Seals Arkansas opened the Center for Training and Wellness in Little Rock to offer an array of programs and services, such as technological training, job coaching, life skills training, fitness, occupational and speech therapy and much more, Rogers said. Related to future employment, Easter Seals programs stress professionalism, punctuality, reliability, positive attitudes, attendance and dressing appropriately. Additionally, a skills assessment is performed on each individual, and assistance is provided in searching for jobs, writing resumes, completing job applications, interviewing for jobs and obtaining modifications needed to succeed at a job, Rogers said.

adulthood, Green said. She suggests parents assess their child’s comfort level, strengths, weaknesses and interests. Rogers encourages parents to talk to their teens about their interests but not rush getting involved with a program. Volunteering is a good place to start, she said, because it’s an “excellent way of seeing if an interest is the right fit for the individual.” DWS programs also encourage volunteering and “helping the community and developing skills,” Friedman said.

Easter Seals Arkansas’s HIRE Division provides on-site job coaching and community employment placement, as well as job seeking and supported employment, Rogers said.

Friedman encourages parents to talk to their teen’s school guidance counselor about the options available after graduation. Another option is visiting a DWS workforce center, where staff can help refer individuals with disabilities to training and educational programs, like apprenticeships or needed accommodations, she said.

While individuals must be 18 or older with a high school diploma or GED to access Easter Seals’ adult programs, Rogers urges parents to start planning for the next phase before their teen graduates. She said parents and teens can take a tour of the center and start completing paperwork prior to graduation.

For teens with disabilities, training and learning what to expect in the workforce will put them on the road to success and ensure that they become competitive in the job market. Vocational training also enhances self-esteem and promotes independence, Friedman said.

In the future, Rogers hopes to work with high schools so students can access programs at the Center for Training and Wellness before graduation.

“It is a competitive job market,” Rogers said. “Teens with disabilities are competing with others for the same jobs so they must have skills an employer is looking for. We can help identify an individual’s interests, strengths and abilities. Training can be provided to give the individual an edge in the job market.”

After graduation, the ACCESS Life day program is available for individuals age 18-35. This program offers education on healthy lifestyles, developing independence and practicing vocational and social skills, as well as community integration, problem-solving, money management, and on- and off-campus jobs, Green said. Both Easter Seals and ACCESS also have participant-run businesses offering on-the-job training for individuals with disabilities, including customer service and social skills. Easter Seals’ RENEW Recycling Program provides employment for adults with disabilities, while they also help the community, Rogers said. ACCESS Gardens and ACCESS Ceramics teach students about the retail industry, Green said. This fall, ACCESS will become the central Arkansas affiliate of Project SEARCH, a national program that provides adults with disabilities, age 18-30, with one-year internships at local businesses, Green said. This program will foster confidence, self-esteem and independence, she said, and give students “the opportunity to acquire competitive, transferrable and marketable job skills.”

Competing in the Workforce Parents must advocate for their child during this important transition into

Who Can Help?

ACCESS, call (501) 217-8600 or visit

Arkansas Department of Workforce Services, visit

Arkansas Rehabilitation Services, a division of the Department of Career Education, visit

Easter Seals Arkansas Center for Training and Wellness, call (501) 367-1204 or visit

february 2013 savvy kids

| 27

Bracing Little Legs

for Happier Lives By Judy Otto

Orthotic braces are designed to support, stabilize and correct dysfunctions of the lower limbs; but fitting such braces to a child with limited mobility goes beyond those cold facts, opening doors to new possibilities, inspiring greater confidence and often initiating a dramatic life change.

uncontrollable—a condition known as “high tone.” The contracture caused the patient to walk on his toes, even when wearing the prescribed DAFO (dynamic ankle foot orthosis)—a brace that includes tone-reducing features in addition to the basic foot support a traditional AFO offers.

No child wants to be “different”—and a well-chosen and properly fitted orthosis can serve as something of an equalizer for a child with cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy or spina bifida—minimizing those differences as much as possible and allowing the child to follow a more natural process of participating, competing and supporting/partnering with peers rather than feeling excluded.

His goal was to be able to walk across the stage at graduation to receive his diploma, reports Fisher, part of a rehab team that encouraged him to do a program of exercises to stretch the heel cord, allowing him to lift his toes more freely.

Especially where ambulation is concerned, it’s important for a child to feel they are “keeping up with” others; and in many cases, a lower limb orthosis such as an AFO (ankle foot orthosis) helps to serve this need. Creating Independence Steve Fisher, a certified and licensed orthotist at Snell Prosthetic & Orthotic Laboratory in Little Rock, notes that while some children initially object to wearing an AFO that makes them look different, their attitudes can quickly change once they recognize the benefits. “Soon these children actually want to wear their AFOs. I’ve had parents tell me the kids will hold the braces up for the parents and ask for them to be put on, because they’re more mobile with the braces on, and they realize that.” AFOs not only enable greater mobility and confidence through the support they provide, they may also provide the foundation for improvement. Depending on the commitment and determination of the patient, in many cases truly significant and inspiring improvement is possible. Fisher shares the story of a young patient with cerebral palsy who experienced muscular contracture that caused his feet to become rigid and 28 | savvy kids february 2013

“He worked hard for six months, and not only was he able to reach his goal on graduation day, he was also able to reduce his dependency on the AFO and switched to a shorter design that provided less support. And he also learned to drive a car! “This young man who wanted to become more independent is now going to college. Through his efforts and hard work he reached his goal—a shorter brace. It’s possible he will outgrow the need for a brace entirely.” Fitting a Variety of Conditions AFOs are designed to treat a variety of conditions, from major to relatively minor. “The choice depends on the diagnosis of the patient,” Fisher explains. “A child with spina bifida is going to need a different kind of AFO than a child with different issues. Kids with cerebral palsy often have high tone, so physicians typically prescribe DAFOs that reduce tone and help to stop them pointing their toes all the time. With pointed toes their heel cord gets tight and when they stand up, they have to stand on their tiptoes because they can’t get their heels down. The DAFO is designed primarily to reduce the tone and hold their foot in a good neutral position.” Children with low tone fall at the opposite end of the spectrum, where pronation (commonly referred to as fallen arches or flat feet) is the threat, Fisher says. “In this case, their muscles don’t have enough tone—they’re

relaxed too much and they can fall into pronation, which does not allow them to support their weight comfortably.” Children with spina bifida often require an AFO applied in combination with a reciprocating gait orthosis (RGO) that provides essential back support and sometimes enables the child to walk. “The RGO reaches up above the waist, so it helps them stand, which is going to help their bones get stronger from weight bearing.” Some conditions change as the child grows. “Sometimes the child will have high tone when they’re young, and as they get older it decreases, allowing them to go to a shorter brace—and sometimes they can get out of braces entirely. With cerebral palsy, function can certainly improve with age; the muscles benefit from muscle memory and they start walking better. After a lot of physical therapy, they can progress like our graduate who walked to accept his diploma,” Fisher notes. With muscular dystrophy, on the other hand, muscles can weaken to the point where they require support; often they deteriorate further and the patient must begin using a wheelchair. “In this case,” says Fisher, “AFOs can keep them up and walking as long as possible; later, there are AFOs they can wear in the wheelchair to keep their feet in a neutral position which prevents the muscles from tightening and deforming the feet, and thus preserves range of motion for potential future weight bearing.”

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Some braces, such as those designed to stretch the heel cord and restore range of motion, are designed for limited wear—during inactive periods such as sleep or for one-hour periods at school. Walking AFOs are made to reduce tone and hold the child’s feet in a neutral position so they can walk properly through heel strike and toe off; some enable active sports participation.

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“Kids with pronation issues, including children with Down syndrome, are usually fitted with a shorter brace called a supra malealor orthosis or SMO. It reaches to just above the ankle, and fits comfortably inside their shoes, holding the arch up and controlling the heel to prevent a flat foot,” says Fisher, who fits orthoses and makes necessary adjustments for most of his small patients during school visits —a convenience appreciated by working parents. DAFOs come in a range of sizes and designs, some with names sure to tickle a child’s imagination: The Leap Frog, Bunny, and Kangaroo, as well as the tonereducing Hot Dog and the Chipmunk—which defied Darwin by evolving from a Pollywog! To be safe and effective, all braces should be selected and fitted by a trained and licensed orthotist, who will instruct the child and parents regarding their correct use, including specific guidance regarding proper care and maintenance of the braces. Judy Otto is a writer for Perry & Associates Marketing. She has written this piece on behalf of Snell Prosthetic & Orthotic Laboratory. For additional information, contact Snell Prosthetic & Orthotic Laboratory at (501) 664-2624.

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| 29

Vaccine Can

Fight Cancer Later in Life By Nancy Andrews Collins, M.D.

Getting a vaccination early in life helps the body build immunity (special antibodies) to rid itself of the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) if exposure occurs later. HPV vaccines are recommended for males and females, ages 9-26. HPV is a virus associated with invasive cancers of the cervix, vulva, vagina, anus, oropharynx (back of the throat, including the base of the tongue and tonsils) and penis. It is also the cause of genital warts. Genital human papillomavirus is the most common sexually transmitted infection. Approximately 20 million Americans are currently infected with HPV, and, each year, 6 million new infections occur. The disease is so common that 50% sexually active men and women get HPV at some point in time. Most cases of the virus can be cleared by the body’s immune system but there is no way of knowing which people will progress to develop cancer. There are very few symptoms unless the warts are external. Abnormal Pap smears, the test for cervical cancer, requiring treatment are caused by HPV. If you or someone you know has had an abnormal Pap smear, you may have HPV and

your doctor will recommend the required follow-up and treatment. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved two vaccines that protect individuals from contracting this virus: Gardasil and Cervarix. Gardasil is recommended for males and females and protects against invasive cancers and genital warts. Cervarix is recommended only for females (not males) and protects against invasive cancers only. Availability of these vaccines occurred in 2005 for females and 2009 for males. Education is the key to making good decisions about your health and your child’s health. Talk to a health care provider about HPV and the vaccines used to treat it. Nancy Andrews Collins, M.D., MBA, FACOG, is an Associate Professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, College of Medicine at the University of Arkansas for Medial Sciences. She is the director of the Cervical Cancer Education and Prevention Program (CCEPP), which is funded by the Arkansas Department of Health. CCEPP is available to educate the community through training of community partners, providers and office staff and live seminars for any social, educational or faith-based organization. For more information, call (501) 526-7636, email or, or visit our website

Healthy Girls and Boys Healthy Girls and Boys is a program providing vaccinations to protect against the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) at clinics throughout the state. This program is sponsored by the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and Arkansas Department of Health. For details about the program, as well as information about HPV, the vaccinations that protect against it or to request a special group clinic, visit, call (501) 526-7636, email or andrewsnancyr@ 30 | savvy kids february 2013

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savvyKiDS 32 | savvy kids february 2013

february 2013 savvy kids

January 10, 2013

Live In Little Rock @ Verizon Arena


| 33 Photo by Brian Chilson


Easy King Cake Knots By Stephanie Parker Celebrate Mardi Gras on February 12 with this quick and easy take on the traditional King Cake that the whole family is sure to enjoy. Laissez les bons temps rouler! What You Need: 1 loaf refrigerated French bread dough 3 tablespoons butter, softened 1/4 cup sugar 1 tablespoon cinnamon 1 cup powdered sugar 4 teaspoon milk (more may be needed for the right consistency) 1/2 teaspoon vanilla Colored sugar - yellow, purple and green

16 by 12 inches. Brush the dough lightly with softened butter. Mix together sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle over butter. Cut the dough in half lengthwise and then cut crosswise into strips about 1 1/4 inches wide. Twist two strips together. Tie each strip loosely into a knot, stretching gently if necessary, and place on baking sheet about 2-inches apart. 

Directions: Preheat oven to 350. Unroll French bread dough into a large rectangle, about

Stephanie Parker writes the Plain Chicken blog ( This recipe and photo have been reprinted with her permission.

34 | savvy kids february 2013

Bake for 25-28 minutes. Cool. Mix together powdered sugar, milk and vanilla. Dip each knot into icing and then sprinkle with colored sugar. (Make your own colored sugar by mixing sugar with food coloring.)

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We work with a variety of private insurance providers as well as ARKids 1st, Medicaid, TEFRA and TRICARE. february 2013 savvy kids

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Well-Intended Wellness By Meredith Martin-Moats

February is heart month, a time to focus on wellness in all its forms. We’re reminded of the need to eat better, exercise more and seek out ways to reduce stress and tension in our lives. Here’s a confession: sometimes just hearing the word “healthy” stresses me out. I’m pretty sure that’s not very, well, healthy. And here’s something else that stresses me out: people telling me I need to decrease my stress level. That really stresses me out. In the deepest part of my being I want nothing more than to be healthy. I want this for myself but even more for my 3-year-old twin sons. At their age, all waking hours revolve around nonstop play and an endless quest for bliss and joy. But it won’t be long before they’re adults with their own complex and busy lives. Life will get intense; they’ll forget to take time for the small stuff, and maybe start eating cookies for lunch. After all, if they perpetually see their role models put their own health on the back burner, chances are they will too. So if I care so much about health, why does talk of improvement make me feel anxious? I think it comes down to this: far too often, discussions of health and healing sound more like bullet points on a checklist rather than a fundamental shift in the way we approach our daily lives. In other words, just something else to add to the growing list of things I can never seem to accomplish. It makes me feel like I’m going to fail before I even start. Don’t get me wrong. I love a to-do list and would be absolutely lost without mine. Every morning, I get out a piece of paper. At the top I write, “Make to do list.” Underneath I jot down a series of items, such as “finish column,” “schedule vet appointments” and “take children to library.” After my list is complete, I return to the top, and I ever so joyfully cross off the first item. Such fulfillment. But all joking aside, I’ve been writing “put away clean laundry” on my to-do list since my kids were born three years ago. And I almost never get around to crossing it off. What I’m really looking for is a full-on paradigm shift, a version of health much more nuanced than caloric intake. And I need a new language to help me get there. So the other night I tried a yoga class. I’ve always been curious about yoga’s holistic approach to body awareness and acceptance of life in the moment. But it was the free introduction class that really drew me in. I came home feeling somewhat relaxed and encouraged. I’ve got to put that on my to-do list for next week, I thought to myself. 36 | savvy kids february 2013

If you’re one of those people who find motivation in berating yourself with how far you have to go, more power to you. It’s taken me years to discover that I’m not like that. I’ve found only one thing that will steadily fuel my burgeoning commitment to greater health: accepting where I’m at. These hips may make it impossible to fit into the clothes of my youth, but they’re the product of growing two babies, and for that reason I’m rather proud of them. And, yes, my stress level sometimes goes through the roof but it’s typically the result of time spent doing one of the hardest jobs known to humankind: parenting. After all, if I wasn’t stressed at least part of the time, I wouldn’t be paying attention. Acknowledging these things doesn’t mean I want to remain perpetually out of shape with a frazzled, stressed-out brain. It’s just the opposite. Pondering obligations of meeting some kind of health checklist tends to make me feel deflated, even angry. Learning to be OK with where I’m at gives me energy to meet my goals. It’s helping me realize that health isn’t a stack of folded laundry waiting to be put away. It’s a gradual process that requires not just effort but love, patience, perseverance, and any of those other large order concepts that can’t be restricted by a bulleted to-do list. When I got home from my first yoga class my sons met me at the door. “You went to your yo-yo class,” they asked, faces filled with curiosity. I thought about correcting them, but decided that “yo-yo class” is a much better phrase for my state of health these days. Since that day I’ve made slow but steady progress. I’ve checked out the Jim Daily Fitness and Aquatic Center in Little Rock where they offer affordable classes and memberships (only $40 a month!). I’ve discovered a few other places in town that offer free trial classes to see which fitness spot might offer the best fit for my time and pocketbook. And, of course, I’m taking advantage of all the free stuff – walks in the crisp air by the river and chasing my toddlers as they go running through the park. Making the effort to come to grips with the current version of myself has been unexpectedly energizing. Sometimes I don’t even mind trading ice cream for fresh veggies. More often than not I actually look forward to my morning workouts, and sometimes, sometimes, I find the strength to take long deep breaths when I get angry rather than mimic the toddler tantrum behavior I’m supposed to be discouraging. And that all seems pretty healthy.

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The Three Little Pigs and Three Billy Goats Gruff!

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The Princess and the Pea

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JAN 25 – FEB 10

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Pay What You Can Night is March 15. Tickets go on sale at 10 am on the day of the performance and must be  purchased at the AAC Box Office. Limit 6 per family. Seating is limited. Download FREE Activity guide at


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february 2013 savvy kids

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Nobody told me this stuff:

Super Toddler Strength By Robert Bell My son is becoming stronger by the day, maybe even by the minute. This is cool and all because, naturally, I want him to grow up into a 6’5”, 200-lb. athlete in some high-paying sport that doesn’t involve head injuries or wearing spandex at any juncture. But at the moment, his seemingly unnatural physical stoutness is complicating things for his mother and me. He’s 15 months old now, and I remember it was six months ago at least that his mom had to use both hands to wrest a plastic spoon from his tiny, vise-like mitt. He didn’t want to let go of that thing and he sure didn’t make it easy on my wife to get it away from him. Perhaps babies are possessed of some sort of freakish-for-their-size strength, an evolutionary holdover from the days when a toddler might have to defend the family cave from a saber-toothed chinchilla or something. That was probably a huge advantage back then, but here in the now, it sure is making it difficult for us to change his diaper, put clothing on him or get him to sit in his highchair. Up until about a week ago, he took a pretty laissez-faire approach to all of the above. “Oh, we’re changing my diaper/putting on new clothes/sitting down for dinner? Cool, no prob.” Nowadays? All of those things are definitely a prob. This is especially, uh, problematic when it involves changing a dirty diaper. It seems like half the time, he decides at some point in the process that nope, I am not on board with this, and thus he locks up his legs and starts twisting and screaming and generally thrashing around like a maniac. Sometimes he can be appeased or distracted if I hand him something, like a hairbrush or a tube of lanolin, and say, “Hey buddy, can you hold onto this for me? It’s really important. Thank you.” Other times, anything I try to give him just ends up on the floor, often after smacking me in the face. I used to think that the belt that’s attached to the changing table pad was meant to make sure your young’un didn’t accidentally flop overboard, but now I’m pretty sure its main purpose is to pin the little buggers down while you try to get them into some clean duds. In addition to the changing table wrestling matches, another thing he has taken to is grabbing my cheek or the side of my neck and just twisting the ever-loving bejeezus out of it, pushing his thumb so hard I start to worry that it’s gonna jab through to the other side like a sharp hole punch through a few sheets of 34-year-old paper. Looking at those sweet, perfect little innocent hands, it’s hard to believe how much pain they can and do inflict. Another thing my boy has begun doing is picking up relatively large and heavy objects, moving them around and then sitting on them, arms bowed out, 38 | savvy kids february 2013

slightly out of breath and with a look of pure satisfaction on his face, like, “Yeah, I moved that over here even though it’s bigger than I am. No big deal.” I don’t know, perhaps his inexplicable strength will fade over time as he grows out of his Little Bamm-Bamm phase and becomes more of a normal human being. But if not, I’m going to have to get my less-than-svelte self to the gym so I can keep up.

Open Enrollment

for 2013-14

Now is the time to apply for magnet programs and school choice options. Save time by reviewing required documents and downloading forms at Jan. 28 - Feb. 1, 2013 • 8am-5pm • St. Mark Baptist Church • 5722 W. 12th St. Feb. 4 - Feb. 8, 2013 • 8am-5pm • Student Registration Office • 501 Sherman St.

ATTN: LRSD PARENTS February 18, 2013 Parent Conference Day


• Middle schools offer innovative schedules and electives to engage students. • High schools offer a myriad of AP subjects and wide range of courses to meet a variety of career interests. • Nine AVID schools offer a unique and focused support system for college-bound students. • Ahead-of-the-curve implementation of iPads and other technology in classrooms.

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february 2013 savvy kids

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Courtesy of the Children’s Department at the William F. Laman Public Library in North Little Rock

Sweet Hearts Written by Jan Carr; Illustrated by Dorothy Donohue A young girl celebrates Valentine’s Day by making and hiding paper hearts around the house for her family to discover. The book includes directions for making hearts and a brief history of Valentine’s Day. Sarah Mattingly-Benson, library assistant at Laman Library’s Children’s Department, says Sweet Hearts is “cute story” for preschool-age children, with vibrant, collage-style illustrations.

First Family Written by Deborah Hopkinson; Illustrated by AG Ford The White House is a museum, the office of the chief executive, a gathering place for leaders and visitors from around the globe, and it is also a home for one special family: the First Family. This book follows a day in the life of the Obama family from moving in on inauguration day to making important decisions, hosting state dinners, planting a garden and exploring the historic house. Mattingly-Benson says this nonfiction book highlights the First Family with a story-like quality and illustrations for grades K-5.

APP OF THE MONTH Flashcards By NKO Ventures LLC Free Description: With the Flashcards app, students can create useful study aids full of text and images. Millions of other flashcards created by others are also available for download. Flashcards can be sorted and organized into folders and shared through iTunes or email. Four built-in keyboards allow for rich text formatting, math and chemistry symbols and Greek letters. Students can also keep track of their progress while studying. Available for iPhone and iPad.

WakeMyMojo By BodiMojo Free Description: WakeMyMojo is a health-tracker game for kids and teens, where users log physical activity, foods and mood. Points can be earned and progress can be tracked over time. The object of the game is to keep the Mighty Mojo alive and happy by leading a healthy lifestyle of fitness, good food choices and positive mood. This app also provides tips for healthy living. Available for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.

40 | savvy kids february 2013

Tuesday – Saturday 9am – 5pm Free Admission


501 W. Ninth Street Little Rock, Arkansas 501.683.3593

P H O T O G R A P H Y 501.650.1806 v

PCSSD A Museum of The Department of Arkansas Heritage

Experience the power of public education.

Pulaski County Special School District

Achievement in Action Our schools’ award-winning fine arts programs – including Mr. Hatch’s orchestra at Fuller Middle School– provide many students with scholarship opportunities or a chance to play with the Arkansas Symphony Youth Orchestra.


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Starting off on the right note Arkansas Symphony Orchestra’s educational programs enrich and inspire the next generation By Erica Sweeney Fostering musical talents and patronage of the arts starts with exposure at an early age, said Geoffrey Robson, associate conductor of the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra. The ASO strives to do just that by providing an array of educational programs to children and teenagers. Through Youth Orchestra, Children’s Concerts, free tickets, school visits and more, the ASO carries out its mission to connect, enrich and inspire by allowing kids of all ages the chance to learn and hear the music firsthand. “Our goal is to expose children to symphonic music and build an audience for the future,” said Barbara Burroughs, ASO director of education and outreach. For more than 45 years, the ASO Children’s Concerts have given “kids the opportunity to come to the concert hall and not just hear the music, but to hear it live,” said Robson, who conducts the concerts. This year’s theme is American Odyssey, which is “an explanation of the growth and emergence of American music of diverse backgrounds,” he said. During the concert, Robson said he often discusses the different instruments, the composers and style of music. A teacher and student guidebook with hands-on activities to supplement the concert is provided to all those registered to attend. The concerts are held twice a year in Little Rock at Robinson Center Music Hall and in other areas of the state throughout the year. The next Children’s Concert is scheduled for Friday, Feb. 22 at 10 a.m. at Robinson. Tickets are $3 per child, and schools and individual families can sign up through Feb. 20 by calling (501) 425-8964. Last fall’s children’s concert was a packed house, with each of Robinson’s 2,600 seats filled, Burroughs said. In addition, students from kindergarten to 12th grade can always attend the ASO’s Sunday afternoon performances for free, Burroughs said. The next opportunity to see a performance for free is on Feb. 10 at 3 p.m. at Robinson, when ASO performs “A Night at the Movies.” In the lobby during Sunday afternoon performances, members of the Youth 42 | savvy kids february 2013

Orchestra also hold instrument petting zoos, giving kids the chance to “touch, feel and play” the instruments, Burroughs said. The instrument petting zoo is also one of the programs that ASO brings into schools. Two full-time quartets also visit schools all over the state to provide short demos for students, Burroughs said. The ASO works to “fill in that gap” of the music education that is missing in schools, and “foster the programs that do exist,” Robson said. “We’re not a substitute for a school music program; we’re a supplement.” The Youth Orchestra, made up of about 200 of the “brightest students in the state,” has been going strong for more than 40 years, Robson said. He said he enjoys working with students and seeing them progress from attending a Children’s Concert to picking up an instrument and maybe even joining the Youth Orchestra. Auditions for Youth Orchestra are held each spring for ages eight to 18. Those chosen are placed in groups by age and the caliber of their audition, Robson said. Playing a musical instrument is beneficial for children because it provides cultural context and is an “enjoyable, intellectually inspired pursuit,” he said. It is a skill set that can be applied to any field, and “playing in an ensemble instills a sense of social skills,” he said. “It’s been proven that playing music or participating in musical activity teaches discipline, perseverance, math skills, logic and reasoning,” Burroughs said. “Participating in music makes children happier.” Robson said he encourages kids and teens to get involved with anything that interests them, whether it’s sports or music, and “it doesn’t have to be one or the other.” “Music is an incredibly engaging way to interact with others,” he said. “It can only lead to good things.” For more information about the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra’s educational programs, visit


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AmeriCan BoyChoir

March 1

february 2013 savvy kids

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Kids Eat FREE!

Below is a listing of locations and days in which kids, 12 and under, can eat free with a paid adult (unless otherwise noted).



CICI’S PIZZA Ages 3 and under eat free at buffet. • Conway: 1250 Old Morrilton Hwy, 764-0600 • Hot Springs: 3321 Central Avenue, 321-2400 • Jacksonville: 120 John Harden Dr, Jacksonville, 241-2224 • North Little Rock: 2815 Lakewood Village Dr, 753-1182

BEEF O BRADY’S 4 p.m.-close. • Maumelle:115 Audubon Dr., 803-3500

JJ’s Grill Free kid’s meal with the purchase of adult meal for kids 12 and under (all day). Conway: 1010 Main Street


March 10: The10Hope Ball is an annual event hosted by 4-7 p.m. Ages and under. Tues. & Sat.gala only. the 20th Century to raise funding for the continued • Little Rock: 4300Club S University, 562-5651 operation of the 20th Century Club’s Lodge. The 2012 Ball, themed “Garden of Hope”, will be held in the GOLDEN CORRAL Ages 3 and under eat freeCenter, at buffet. Discounted prices The Statehouse Convention Wally Allen Ballroom. Tuesday. for kids on elegant evening will include both live and silent auctions, Little Rock:dinner, 5001 Warden a• North delicious seated cocktails,Road, and 771-4605 dancing until midnight. For more information call 501-907-1760 or visit LARRY’S PIZZA Ages 4 and under. • Bryant: 4500 Hwy. 5 North, 847-5003 • Conway: 1068 Markham, 329-3131 • Little Rock: 12th & Center St., 372-6004; 12911 Cantrell Rd., 224-8804 San Francisco Bread Co. One FREE Kid’s Meal with the purchase of Adult Meal, after 5 p.m. • Hot Springs: 261 Cornerstone Blvd., 525-7322 ZAXBY’S 5 p.m.-close, dine-in only. • Jacksonville: 209 Marshall Rd., 241-0546 • Maumelle: 104 Carnahan Dr., 851-9777 • Sherwood: 208 Brookswood Rd., 833-9777


American Pie Pizza Kids eat free after 4 p.m. • Little Rock: 10912 Colonel Glenn Rd., 225-1900 • Maumelle: 9709 Maumelle Blvd., 758-8800 • North Little Rock: 4830 N. Hills Blvd., 753-0081 CHICK-FIL-A First and third Monday of each month. • North Little Rock: 3929 McCain Blvd, 945-1818 NYPD Pizza Free Kids entree, for children ages 10 and under, with the purchase of adult entree. Dine-in only, 4-6 p.m. • Little Rock: 6015 Chenonceau Blvd., 868-3911 SHORTY SMALL’S Up to two kids meals free per paying adult. • Little Rock: 1110 N. Rodney Parham, 224-3344 TA MOLLY’S 5-9 p.m. • Bryant: 206 W. Commerce St., 653-2600

44 | savvy kids february 2013

Arkansas Burger Company One free kid’s meal per adult meal. Dine-in only, 5:30-9 p.m. • Little Rock: 7410 Cantrell Road, 663-0600

MOOYAH BURGER One free kid's meal with the purchase of adult meal. • Little Rock: 14810 Cantrell Rd., 868-1091 NYPD Pizza Free Kids entree, for children ages 10 and under, with the purchase of adult entree. Dine-in only, 4-6 p.m. • Little Rock: 6015 Chenonceau Blvd., 868-3911 DENNY’S RESTAURANT 4-7 p.m. Ages 10 and under. • Little Rock: 310 S. Shackleford Rd., 224-8264 JIM’S Razorback Pizza Kids 12 and under receive a FREE six inch pizza with the purchase of an adult entree (Dine-in only). • Little Rock: 16101 Cantrell Rd. • Maumelle: 20608 Hwy 365 North • Hot Springs: 4330 Central Ave. LONESTAR STEAKHOUSE 4 p.m.-close. • Little Rock:10901 Rodney Parham, 227-8898 PIZZA HUT 5-8 p.m. Dine in only. • Little Rock: 11410 W. Markham St., 228-7000 Stromboli’s One FREE Kid’s Meal (12 or under) per adult meal purchased at regular price. Kids may choose from the Kid’s Menu or Pizza By-the-Slice with up to two toppings. Dine-in only. Cannot be combined with any other offer. • Conway: 605 Salem Rd., 327-3700


FAMOUS DAVE’S 4 p.m.-close. • Little Rock: 225 North Shackleford Road, 221-3283 FIREHOUSE SUBS • Bryant: 3108 Horizon St., 653-3700 • Little Rock: 12312 Chenal Pkwy., 228-5553; 10300 Rodney Parham, 225-2001 • Maumelle: 11617 Maumelle Blvd., 753-9898 • North Little Rock: 2811 Lakewood Village Dr., 812-5002 LARRY’S PIZZA 4-8 p.m. With purchase of one adult meal, up to two kids get a small one topping pizza, drink, and $1 in tokens. • Cabot: 2798 South Second Street, 843-7992

JIM’S Razorback Pizza Kids 12 and under receive a FREE six inch pizza with the purchase of an adult entree (Dine-in only). • Little Rock: 16101 Cantrell Rd. • Maumelle: 20608 Hwy 365 North • Hot Springs: 4330 Central Ave. Western Sizzlin Up to 2 children eat Free with the purchase of an adult meal. • Benton: 1916 Congo Rd., 778-9656


CAPTAIN D’s • Benton: 1419 Military Rd, 778-7909 • Hot Springs: 1906 Central St., 321-4288 • Jacksonville: 1109 West Main St., 982-3330 • Little Rock: 6301 Colonel Glen Rd., 568-6244 • North Little Rock: 5320 JFK Blvd., 758-5144 Mexico Chiquito One FREE kid's meal per adult entree for kids 12 and under (Dine-in only). • Conway: 1135 Skyline Dr., 205-1985 • Jacksonville: 1524 W. Main St., 982-0533 • Little Rock: 13924 Cantrell, 217-0700; 102 S. Rodney Parham, 224-8600; 4511 Camp Robinson, 771-1604; 11406 W. Markham, 217-0647 MOE’S SOUTHWEST GRILL 4 p.m.-close. One free kids meal with paid adult meal. • Bryant: 7409 Alcoa Rd., 778-3111 • Conway: 625 Salem Rd., 336-6500 • Little Rock: 12312 Chenal Pkwy., 223-3378 • North Little Rock: 4834 North Hills Blvd., 812-5577


BOSTON’S GOURMET PIZZA RESTAURANT • Little Rock: 3201 Bankhead Dr., 235-2000 LUBY’S CAFETERIA • Little Rock: 12501 West Markham, 219-1567


BOSTON’S GOURMET PIZZA RESTAURANT • Little Rock: 3201 Bankhead Dr., 235-2000 DENNY’S RESTAURANT 4-7 p.m. Ages 10 and under. • Little Rock: 310 S. Shackleford Rd., 224-8264 CORKY’S Kid's meals 1/2 off. 4 p.m.-close. • Little Rock: 12005 Westhaven Dr., 954-7427

If you would like to add your Kids Eat Free information to this list, contact us at (501) 375-2985.

s y a d s r thu

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littlebites U.S. Pizza Company

U.S. Pizza Company is a place for the family to play games, enjoy great award-winning food and spend quality time with one another in a pleasant atmosphere. The friendly neighborhood restaurant has several locations in Little Rock (Heights, Hillcrest, Fair Park and Rodney Parham) and North Little Rock (Pike, McCain and JFK) and also in Maumelle, Sherwood, Conway, Bryant and Fayetteville. Patrons are attracted to the spacious patio scene offered at most locations. Big party dining is also available. It’s a neighborhood place where families go for pizza made from scratch, salads for which the house dressing is made daily and terrific U.S. Pizza original and specialty sandwiches. Family is the cornerstone of U.S. Pizza and the tradition continues as grandchildren of those who helped begin the restaurant 41 years ago are working at the restaurant today. An entire section of the menu is devoted to family members and has various items named after them: Gracie’s Creamy Italian Chicken, Owen’s Philly Cheesesteak, Trey’s Chloroplast Blast and so forth. The motto is “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Really Great Pizzas, Salads and Sandwiches.” The restaurant also boasts it has the coldest beer in Arkansas. Pizzas are prepared with 46 | savvy kids february 2013

old-fashioned stone hearth ovens and the result is pure perfection. There are dozens of toppings to choose from in addition to the traditional style options. Hot, stone hearth oven sandwiches are made to order and can be cre-

ated with your choice of fresh breads (sourdough hoagie, marble rye, wheat hoagie, sliced sourdough and white hoagie) and a number of dressings. A pickle spear and chips are complimentary to every sandwich.

So, what did we order? Owen Waller

Supreme pizza, breadsticks “Game room! And I love mushrooms!”

Grace Waller and Judy Waller Breece

They shared gluten free asparagus and onion frittata Grace, “I like the game room!” Judy, “I am very blessed to have two of the most beautiful grandchildren and I love to sit down, visit and share food with these kids and Erika so often. That is very special to me.”

Erika Waller

Turkey salad, supreme pizza “I love the salads and visiting with family while the kids get to play.”

oN the MeNU Brunch is served on weekends from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and features interesting pizza options, such as the sleepy dragon pizza, the sunday warrior pizza and gluten free frittatas (the asparagus and onion frittata is a favorite!) and, of course, the traditional Brunch-style cocktails.

U.S. Pizza Company Visit on the web at or in person at any of the many locations: Heights – 5524 Kavanaugh, Little Rock , 501-664-7071 Levy – 3324 Pike, North Little Rock, 501-758-5997 Hillcrest – 2710 Kavanaugh, Little Rock, 501-663-2198 Rodney Parham – 9300 Rodney Parham, Little Rock, 501-2246300 Fayetteville – 202 W. Dickson, Fayetteville, 479-582-4808 Maumelle – 650 Edgewood Ste. 106, Maumelle, 501-851-0880 McCain – 4001 McCain Park, North Little Rock, 501-753-2900 JFK – 5524 JFK, North Little Rock, 501-975-5524 Fair Park – 3307 Fair Park, Little Rock, 501-565-6580 Springhill – 3600 Hwy 5, Bryant, 501-943-3333 Sherwood – 8403 Hwy 107 Bldg A, Sherwood, 501-992-1512



Loganberry Frozen Yogurt Kids craving Ice Cream? Satisfy their desire with a healthy alternative at Loganberry Frozen Yogurt. Made fresh in Russellville, AR, in a boutique dairy farm, Loganberry Yogurt is cultured, probiotic yogurt with real fruit purees and natural ingredients. Fresh berries and fruit, nuts, and granola are some of the 50+ toppings at Loganberry Frozen Yogurt topping bar. 12 delicious, low fat, low sugar options range from Triple Dark Chocolate to Watermelon sorbet. Treat your family to a healthy dessert they can have fun creating themselves.

Each month, Savvy Kids will feature some of central Arkansas’ tasty, family-friendly restaurants, including special offers for Savvy Kids readers. If your restaurant would like to be included, call us at 501-375-2985.

6015 Chenonceau Blvd., Little Rock. 501-868-8194

Tropical Smoothie Cafe’s menu boasts bold, flavorful food and smoothies with a healthy appeal. Our food and smoothies are made to order with fresh ingredients. Our smoothies are made from superior simple ingredients including real fruit and natural sugar. Our toasted wraps, bistro sandwiches, grilled flatbreads, and gourmet salads are made fresh with high quality meats and cheeses; and topped with fresh produce and flavorful sauces. Combine that with a fun atmosphere and friendly hospitality and you see why people return again and again! Sign up for Club Tropical absolutely free for special offers, freebies & more! Follow us on Twitter @tscarkansas for even more great rewards. Order online at Little Rock • North Little Rock • Maumelle • Conway • Jacksonville

Mexico Chiquito has been proudly serving families in Central Arkansas since 1935, always providing its customers the finest and freshest food, made-to-order, each and every time. Discover what makes our food so special and come Dip Your Chip Here at Mexico Chiquito!

Buy One Adult Meal Get A Kids Meal FREE*

*Dine In Only

NYPD Pizzeria Kids love pizza and NYPD Pizzeria loves kids. Coupon offer: Every Tuesday is “Two for Tuesday” at NYPD Pizza offering a free 14” cheese pizza when any other 14” pizza is purchased when you dine in. Crayons and coloring sheets are distributed and one of the many large TV screens offers something kids like to watch while parents enjoy the game or a movie. Renown for their homemade crust, pizzas are topped with hi quality, premium fresh toppings. Dairy free and gluten free options are available as well as a children’s menu. 6015 Chenonceau Blvd., Little Rock. 501-868-3911

American Pie Pizza is a family owned operation. Our pizzas are thin crust, and considered by some as the best around. We only use the freshest ingredients on all of our items. Our salads can be a meal and the sandwiches are sure to fill you up. Check out the menu for all the great choices. There is something for everyone. We hope you delight in our food and our staff and have an enjoyable visit as our guests at American Pie Pizza. Kids Eat Free Every Monday! See you at “The Pie”.

Maumelle: 9709 Maumelle Blvd (501) 758-8800 North Little Rock: 4830 N Hills Blvd (501) 753-0081 Little Rock: 10912 Colonel Glenn Rd (501) 225-1900

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FEBRuary GROSSOLOGY AT M.O.D. February 1-28: Come explore why your body produces mushy, oozy, crusty, scaly and stinky gunk at Grossology. The (impolite) Science of the Human Body during its appearance at the Museum of Discovery. Based on the best-selling book Grossology, this exhibition uses sophisticated animatronics and imaginative exhibits to tell you the good, the bad and the downright ugly about runny noses, body odor and much more. Grossoloy will be featured at the Museum of Discovery until May 26. For hours of operation and admission prices, call (501) 396-7050 or visit SCHOOL FACULTY EXHIBITION: PAST AND PRESENT February 1-28: In conjunction with the Arkansas Arts Center 50th Anniversary celebration, the Museum School Faculty Exhibition: Past and Present pays tribute to the Museum School faculty. The Arkansas Arts Center first began offering art classes for children and adults during the spring of 1960. When the new Arts Center was completed in May 1963, it included studios that comprise the Museum School in which a full schedule of art classes was offered. The Museum School Faculty Exhibition: Past and Present highlights work created by current Museum School Faculty along with work from the permanent collection by former faculty members. Works in a variety of media are featured. This exhibition is the final installment in the series. For hours of operation and admission, call (501) 372-4000 or visit SPEAK NOW…POETRY EVENT February 2: A night of spoken word poetry featuring local talent and special performance by nationally renowned poet Sunni Patterson. 6 p.m. at the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center, 501 W. Ninth St. in Little Rock. Free. For more information, call (501) 683-3593 or visit WINTER DISCOVERY LAKE CRUISE February 3: Come prepared to discover Lake Maumelle as it springs to life in the middle of winter. Pinnacle Mountain State Park and its surrounding water bodies host thousands of animals that have migrated south for the winter. A park interpreter will guide the way as we search for critters of all 48 | savvy kids february 2013

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kinds that spend the winter around the lake, hopefully even a few bald eagles. Dress for extremely cold and windy lake weather. Advance payment is required. Admission: $12 adults, $6 children ages 6-12. Meeting place: Jolly Roger’s Marina. For more information call (501) 868-5806. HARLEM GLOBETROTTERS February 5: Known as innovators of the game of basketball for decades, the world famous Harlem Globetrotters are again introducing something unparalleled in the history of sports and family entertainment, taking kid participation and fun to a whole new level when the Globetrotters come to Verizon Arena in North Little Rock. For the first time ever, during the Globetrotters’ 2013 “You Write the Rules” World Tour, your family’s smiles will begin before you even get to the show. Fans will decide the rules for the game that could affect the final outcome. This could be anything from playing with two basketballs at once, to getting double the points for each basket made. Go online with your kids to to vote for which groundbreaking rule you want to see implemented in the game. Doors open: 6 p.m. Show time: 7 p.m. Discount tickets available for groups of 10 or more. Special discounts available for scout groups and military personnel. Call (501) 975-9131 to purchase group tickets. Tickets available at the Verizon Arena box office, all Ticketmaster outlets, charge by phone at 800-745-3000 or online at ACQUIRE THE FIRE February 8-9: For over 20 years, Acquire the Fire has been more than a conference with great teaching, more than a concert with the top Christian bands, and more than you’ve ever experienced! Many teens today are spending their time, money, and passion on pursuing “things” in order to bring them happiness. However, the best “things” in life are not things at all; true lasting joy is found in pursuing that which is eternal. In this life changing weekend, teens will be captured by the fierce love of God and provoked to respond by relentlessly pursuing Him for the rest of their lives. Event place: Agape Church (701 Napa Valley Drive, Little Rock). Event times: 6 p.m. until 8 p.m. both nights. Visit to find out more.

3 LIL PIGS & 3 BILLY GOATS GRUFF February 8-10: One bridge, three houses, three pigs, three goats and a troll. These favorite fairy tales are told back to back in this witty musical production. The Three Little Pigs escape the Big Bad Wolf by the “hair of their chinny, chin, chin.” The Three Billy Goats Gruff trip-trap their way across a rickety bridge and bump into a grumpy old troll. After some teamwork and trickery, the goats and pigs make it out scot-free! You’ll cheer as these wily characters overcome their biggest bullies! Event place: Arkansas Arts Center Children’s Theatre. Performance times: Fri. 7 p.m., Sat. 3 p.m. and Sun. 2 p.m. Admission: $12 per person. For more information call (501) 372-4000 or visit DEVELOPMENTAL SCREENINGS AT BRYANT February 9: Arkansas Therapy Outreach will be giving FREE developmental screenings at the Bryant Library from 10 a.m.- 2 p.m. There will be OT, PT, Speech and Developmental Therapists available to speak with parents and screen children of all ages with specialty in children newborn to 5 years. For more information contact Rebekah James at 501-574-1488.

entertainment every second Thursday of the month, featuring local and national recording artists. Each show is recorded and broadcast on KUAR FM89.1. For more information contact Debra Wood at (501) 758-1720. BLACK HISTORY QUIZ BOWL February 16: Teams from all over the state (grades 6 - 12) will participate in this trivia competition to determine who knows the most about AfricanAmerican history. 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. at the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center, 501 W. Ninth St. in Little Rock. Free. For more information, call (501) 683-3593 or visit Register by Feb. 11 by contacting Frank Bateman at (501) 913-2136 or email arblackhistoryquiz@ DIAMOND EDITION 10TH ANNUAL CHOCOLATE FANTASY BALL February 16: Presented by McDonald’s of Central Arkansas. Celebrate this Valentine’s Day and show the love to the families served by Ronald McDonald House Charities of Arkansas by attending this year’s Diamond Edition 10th Annual, black tie Chocolate Fantasy Ball. A night of extraordinary indulgence is the theme with dining, dancing, fabulous live and silent auctions and chocolate! The event will take place at 6 p.m. at the Peabody Hotel in Little Rock. You won’t want to miss it, so mark your calendar now! Contact Emily Piechocki for tickets, event details and sponsorship opportunities at (501) 978-3119 or via e-mail All proceeds benefit the Ronald McDonald House Charities.

A NIGHT AT THE MOVIES February 9-10: See if your budding musicians, at this point in the season, can identify the music from their favorite movies like the Wizard of Oz, West Side Story, Titanic, Romeo and Juliet, Pink Panther and much more. Thanks to the Entergy Kids Ticket sponsorship, all children (K-12th grade) are permitted to attend any Arkansas Symphony Orchestra performance on Sundays for FREE with a paying adult. And it won’t break the bank for the adult to attend. Individual tickets start at just $14 and a season ticket for new subscribers is less than $7 per performance. Event place: Robinson Center Music Hall. For more information, call (501) 666-1761, ext. 100 or visit

FRONTIER DAYS AT THE HILL OF FIVE TRAILS February 16-17: The frontier spirit lives on the Southwest Trail in the Historic Washington State Park. Walk through a frontier encampment and learn about survival skills used by Arkansas settlers. Watch re-enactors demonstrate tomahawk throwing, use of muzzleloading rifles and more! Admission to the camp is FREE. Tours of the park are available at regular price. For more information, call (870) 93-2684 or visit

LIVE AT LAMAN February 14: One of the William F. Laman Public Library’s most popular programs offers an evening of musical

CLIFFORD THE BIG RED DOG February 17: It only takes a little to BE BIG! What better way to celebrate the beloved Big Red Dog’s 50th


February 5: For parents of students 13 and older who have learning and developmental disabilities, ACCESS is hosting Turning Point: Life After High School. Representatives from area government agencies, community service providers and education service providers will educate parents on transition services; vocational programming and job placement; considering individuals’ strengths and weaknesses for housing, employment and training programs; supported living options; the Medicaid waiver and adult services; GED testing requirements and accommodations; and area post-secondary educational programs for students with learning and/or developmental disabilities. Event is 6-8 p.m. at ACCESS, 10618 Breckenridge Dr., Little Rock. FREE. R.S.V.P. to Megan Jackson, ACCESS receptionist at (501) 217-8600, by Friday, Feb. 1.

Anniversary in 2012 than seeing the Emmy-nominated show brought to life on stage in this ALL NEW musical! The cast will share Clifford’s BE BIG, ideas such as Help Others, Work Together, Believe in Yourself, Share and other timeless values with laughter, music, and dancing that the whole family will love. Admission: $12. Event time: 3 p.m. Event place: East Arkansas Community College Fine Arts Center (1700 Newcastle, Forrest City). For more information, contact Niki Jones at (870) 633-4480.

GOVERNOR’S OFFICE BLACK HISTORY MONTH PROGRAM February 21: The Governor’s office, Mosaic Templars Cultural Center and the Department of Arkansas Heritage will celebrate African-American achievement in business during a Black History Month program Mosaic Templars Cultural Center, 501 W. Ninth St. in Little Rock will serve as the host site for the Governor’s office annual Black History Program. 10 a.m. Free. For more information, call (501) 683-3593 or visit

WINTER DISCOVERY LAKE CRUISE February 17: Come prepared to discover Lake Maumelle as it springs to life in the middle of winter. Pinnacle Mountain State Park and its surrounding water bodies host thousands of animals that have migrated south for the winter. A park interpreter will guide the way as we search for critters of all kinds that spend the winter around the lake, hopefully even a few bald eagles. Dress for extremely cold and windy lake weather. Advance payment is required. Admission: $12 adults, $6 children ages 6-12. Meeting place: Jolly Roger’s Marina. For more information call (501) 868-5806.

AMERICAN ODYSSEY CHILDREN’S CONCERT February 22: The Arkansas Symphony Orchestra’s concert, conducted by Geoffrey Robson, will explore music from the “Beginnings of America” through the “Growth of Black Culture in America,” to the “Influence of Hispanic Migration to America.” A Teacher and a Student Supplement full of hands-on activities to augment concert listening will be given to all registered schools. This concert is a “not to be missed” opportunity for any student, 4th grade and up. Event: 10 a.m. at Robinson Center Music Hall. Call (501) 425-8964 for ticket information. Sign up by Feb. 20.

DR. OLIVER KEITH BAKER LECTURE February 20: Dr. Oliver Keith Baker, originally from McGehee, will present a lecture and answer questions. He is currently an endowed university professor of Physics at Hampton University and, jointly, a staff physicist at the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility. Baker pursues research in the physics of elementary particles and nuclei at CERN in Geneva, Switzerland, and at Jefferson Lab in Virginia. 10 a.m. – 11 a.m. at the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center, 501 W. Ninth St. in Little Rock. Free. For more information, call (501) 683-3593 or visit

FAMILY MOVIE NIGHT February 22: A night of fun and entertainment for the whole family, and a showing of “Remember the Titans” starring Denzel Washington. 6 – 9 p.m. at the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center, 501 W. Ninth St. in Little Rock. Free. For more information, call (501) 683-3593 or visit LANTERNS! FESTIVAL AT WILDWOOD PARK February 22 and 24: A magical evening designed to delight children and adults alike, LANTERNS! celebrates the first full moon of the lunar

year with a profusion of lanterns, entertainment and gourmet treats and warm beverages. Lighted walking paths and fire pits along the lake lead park visitors into winter woodlands to discover vistas representing a variety of ears, cultures and geographical locations, from Venice to Germany to the Caribbean. Event place: Wildwood Park for the Arts (20919 Denny Road, Little Rock). Event times: 6 p.m. until 10 p.m. both nights. For more information contact Rachael Montunnas at (501) 821-7275 or via e-mail rachael@ 22ND ANNUAL ARKANSAS FLOWER & GARDEN SHOW February 22-24: A fun and familyfriendly celebration of gardening in Arkansas will take place inside the Statehouse Convention Center. Enjoy walking through the live indoor garden displays and viewing the many sensational floral arrangements. Get gardening tips and advice from local experts and learn about gardening at the educational presentations. Shop for your home and garden from over 100 garden-related vendors. Admission: $8 adults, $6 seniors and military, 3-day pass for $12 and children under 12 get in free. For more information, call (501) 821-4000 or visit BRUNCH WITH A VISION February 23: The Asya Patton Project presents their Brunch with a Vision at the Main Library, Darragh Center Auditorium, 100 Rock St. in Little Rock. Registration begins at 9:30 a.m. and workshops begin promptly at 10 a.m. The goal of Brunch with a Vision is to help build self-esteem in teen girls and promote goal setting and accountability. Youth will create vision boards to reflect their goals for 2013, and are encouraged to bring pictures from home, magazines,


newspapers, etc. to cover their vision boards. Upon completion of their vision boards, youth will be assigned an adult mentor to follow up with the teen periodically and promote accountability. For more information or to register, email or call (501) 396-9513. LITTLE ROCK LACROSSEFEST February 23-24: Little Rock Lacrosse is hosting the 2nd Annual Little Rock LacrosseFest at Burn’s Park in North Little Rock. Youth teams from all over the region, including Oklahoma, Texas, Northwest Arkansas and Louisiana will be competing in this fantastic display of regional lacrosse talent! Over 300 boys and girls, ages 9-17, will participate in this round robin event, and demonstrate the excitement and fun of one of the fastest growing sports in America! Come and check it out! Event time: 8 a.m. For more information e-mail, Ilyssa Foxx at CIRQUE DU SOLEIL PRESENTS: QUIDAM February 28: Cirque du Soleil is pleased to announce that the critically-acclaimed production Quidam will be performing in North Little Rock at Verizon Arena for five performances. The international cast features 52 world-class acrobats, musicians, singers, and characters. Performance time: 7:30 p.m. Prices vary by performance and seat location. Discounts are available for select performances for children ages 2-12, students with valid ID, senior citizens 65 & over, and military with valid ID. Groups of 12 or more receive up to 25% off each ticket. Special scout discounts, including complimentary patch, also available. Discounts valid for select performances. Contact the group sales office at (501) 975-9131 for more information on group tickets. Tickets available at the Verizon Arena Box Office, all Ticketmaster Outlets, charge by phone at 800-745-3000 or purchase online. VOICES WITHOUT BORDERS CONCERT February 28: Dr. Irma Routen will present her Little Rock area children’s choir in concert! 10 – 11:15 a.m. at the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center, 501 W. Ninth St. in Little Rock. Free. For more information, call (501) 683-3593 or visit february 2013 savvy kids

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A Savvy Kids Special Advertising Section





All parents want the best possible education for their child, and private schools have a lot to offer. Choosing the right school can be a challenge because there is so much to consider, including class size, academics and extracurricular activities. Savvy Kids has profiled some of the great private schools in central Arkansas to assist parents in making this important decision.

Agape Academy 701 Napa Valley Drive, Little Rock (501) 225-0068 Agape Academy is a dually accredited private Christian school receiving accreditation through International Christian Accrediting Association (ICAA) and AdvancEd. Agape offers a preschool, kindergarten, elementary, middle and after-school care program that endeavors to educate children with the best possible structuring available. We are very fortunate to have a staff of qualified, dedicated teachers and the facilities to fulfill our goal of total care and education for our students. The deadline for fall enrollment is Aug. 1.

The Anthony School 7700 Ohio St., Little Rock (501) 225-6629 Founded in 1944, The Anthony School is the oldest non-sectarian independent school in Arkansas. Curriculum is advanced at all levels and has been designed to provide continuity in the development of skills and knowledge from early childhood through early adolescence. As a result, Anthony graduates excel in private and public high schools throughout the community. All school policies are based on the right of every student to learn and every teacher to teach in an atmosphere of mutual respect. Small class sizes allow students to develop and use strong speaking and leadership skills in the classroom and ensure that each student receives adequate 50 | savvy kids february 2013

personal attention. Students flourish academically as well as socially with extracurricular activities including student council, Cub Scouts, Tech Club, Art Club Robotics, basketball, volleyball, track, golf, tennis, soccer and gymnastics. Students participate in art exhibits, science and literary competitions and volunteer opportunities. All first and second grade students take violin and all students perform in plays. Enrollment for fall is ongoing through early August for grade levels that have available openings. Enrollment is open and applications are accepted throughout the year.

Arkansas Baptist Lower School: 62 Pleasant Valley Drive, Little Rock (501) 227-7070 Upper School: 8400 Ranch Blvd., Little Rock (501) 868-5121 Administration Office: (501) 227-7077 At Arkansas Baptist, we know that when talking about Christian schooling not everyone defines it the same way. It is not just a prayer tacked on at the beginning of class, but a careful view of how faith can permeate everything that you do in the classroom and beyond. For more than three decades, our vision has been to provide a quality Christian school focused on academic and Christian excellence. Lower school students learn in a nurturing environment, in which instruction is enhanced with individualized attention. Students in grades 1-6 consistently

score at or above the 80th percentile nationally on standardized tests. Upper school students benefit from a college preparatory curriculum, focused on imparting wisdom, knowledge and understanding, where both AP and concurrent college credit courses are available. All students are provided a full range of extracurricular activities, including state championship sport teams.

academic programs to teach students strong skills of analysis and expression; instill knowledge in the arts, sciences, and humanities; foster critical, creative and independent thinking; and, inspire intellectual curiosity and passion for learning. Episcopal students are encouraged to live principled and fulfilling lives of leadership and service to others.

Open enrollment for fall begins on Feb. 11. Classes are filled on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Every day is Open House. Learn more by visiting or calling (501) 372-1194 to schedule a personal tour.

Avilla Christian Academy 302 Avilla East, Alexander (501) 316-0922 At Avilla Christian Academy, we strongly believe in meeting the individual needs of every student. We strive to train for excellence in faith, academics, relationships and discipline. Our curriculum is college preparatory; our teachers are certified; and, our school is the only state and nationally accredited private school in Saline County. Why decide between a great education and a stable, loving environment? Send them to ACA where you will find both!

Little Rock Christian Academy 19010 Cantrell Road, Little Rock (501) 868-9822 Little Rock Christian Academy is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as a high performing National Blue Ribbon School. The academy provides 3-year-old to 12th-grade students an education that emphasizes academics, arts and athletics from a Christ-centered worldview. Enrollment for fall is ongoing, but space is limited in most grades.

Now enrolling preschool through high school.

Christ Lutheran School 315 S. Hughes St., Little Rock (501) 663-5212 Christ Lutheran School is home to a top-notch academic and family-oriented learning environment. The school’s small class sizes allow students’ needs to be met and for the whole school to connect as a family. Extracurricular activities include band, choir and a variety of sports. The preschool program focuses on academic and social development, preparing students for the elementary level. The elementary and middle school program emphasizes good study habits, responsibility and academic excellence. Students graduate from CLS ready for the rigors of high school. Weekly chapel service allows the school to worship together as a family. CLS is committed to sharing Christ’s love while providing quality academics. CLS is accredited by National Lutheran Schools Accreditation and Arkansas Non-Public School Accreditation Association. Visit our website at to find out more! Enrollment for fall is ongoing.

Episcopal Collegiate School 1701 Cantrell Road, Little Rock (501) 372-1194 Episcopal Collegiate School is an independent college-preparatory school serving students in PreK-3 through 12th grades. The school provides rigorous february 2013 savvy kids

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Single Parent Scholarship Provides Many Levels of Support By Meredith Martin-Moats

According to the 2009 U.S. census, about 17% of homes in the nation are run by single parents. In Arkansas, the number of single parent homes is much higher, hovering around 39%, according to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. In Pulaski County, that number jumps to 43%. Because supporting a family on a single salary can be challenging, single parent homes are more likely to be low-income. The majority of these households are also headed by women, who earn about 19% less than men; and, only about a third of single mothers receive child support. About half of single-mother families in the United States have an estimated annual income of less than $25,000, about one-third of the national median for two-parent families. To better their economic status, many single parents choose to pursue advanced training or higher education. Many single parents take classes while also working multiple jobs to meet their family’s basic needs. These parents can rarely take more than a few classes at a time, so earning degrees can take three to four times longer than the typical four years. The Arkansas Single Parent Scholarship Fund is there to help every step of the way. One of the biggest challenges single mothers face while going to school “is quality time with their children” and juggling the demands of both school and work, says Paula Rogers, a former recipient of the Single Parent Scholarship Fund of Pulaski County, who now sits on the scholarship board. Furthering education can add extra stress to a single parent who may already be working full time, thus separating children and parents for even longer periods of time when children need the closeness of their caregivers. It also means that single parents must find affordable and safe childcare. All too often single parents do not have the resources they need or family and friends to help out. With only 24 hours in a day, Rogers says, it’s “not possible to work full time, go to school full time and be a full-time parent. You can’t do it alone.” The scholarship, Rogers explains, allowed her to go to school full time and continue working part time. She also received other scholarships, allowing her to raise her son and focus on her studies, an investment in her future. More than anything, Rogers says, the scholarship helped her gain confidence, which transformed both her life and her son’s. Now, she uses her degree to give back to the larger community and help others in need. Rogers is the elementary education director at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock’s Children International program, providing “educational enrichment, health and dental care, family assistance and special gifts for children and youth attending the Little Rock Public Schools.” 52 | savvy kids february 2013

Karin Bara, executive director of the Single Parent Scholarship Fund of Pulaski County, says she is perpetually amazed by the “hardworking, driven, dedicated and inspirational” people she meets through the program. Inspiring everyone around them, these parents are unstoppable, she says. “Our students are not looking for a handout but a hand up,” Bara explains. “Over 85% are first generation college students, working part or full time along with being full time parents.” To help the scholarship move forward, many recipients, like Rogers, have become board members, giving back some of the same opportunities that were given to them. Founded in 1990, the Single Parent Scholarship Fund of Pulaski County is an affiliate of the larger Arkansas scholarship, which is based in northwest Arkansas. Since 2000, the Pulaski County scholarship has grown from 62 to 153 recipients and $37,000 to about $125,000 in scholarships, annually. Scholarship recipients have gone on to complete their Ph.D.s, work in service organizations throughout the region, become managers of organizations and enter med school, Bara says. While single parents need financial assistance, Rogers says support is about much more than money. When she first became a scholarship recipient in the late 1990s, staff helped her access reliable and safe childcare, a network of mentors and workshops for job interviews. They even provide attire women may need to wear to job interviews. It’s a resource in every sense of the word, she explains: “spiritually, emotionally, financially.” Perhaps one of the greatest legacies of the program is its impact on the children of recipients. Children see their parents succeed in school and are inspired to continue their own education. Rogers’ son, who was very young when she started college, has just completed his first year at University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff. When asked how the public can support single parents in their quest to attend universities, Rogers suggests individuals “not let their skills sit dormant.” Donating to the scholarship helps women and men attend school. But time and skills are important too. Single parents are always in need of people who can offer resources and activities for children, workshops for career planning and the like. An investment in the lives of single parents and their children is an investment in the community at large. To learn more about the scholarship, visit

EvEry ChilD DEsErvEs Our BEst.

Let Us Help You Find High Quality Child Care Throughout The Year. Better Beginnings is Arkansas’ quality rating system for child care, early education and school-age programs that have gone above and beyond the state licensing requirements.

Visit to Get Started. The Better Beginnings website makes it easy for parents to: • find Better Beginnings participating child care providers in their area • learn what to look for in a child care environment Get off to a good start by equipping yourself with the knowledge and information to choose a Better Beginning for your child!

Department of human services Division of Child Care and Early Childhood Education • 1-800-445-3316 Your Child Care Choice Makes a Lifetime Impact. Research has shown that a child’s early care and education play a critical role in a child’s brain development. During the first years of life, a child develops socially, emotionally, physically and academically. Good child care provides the foundation for skills needed for a lifetime. Visit for more information and to order the FREE DVD, “Why Early Childhood Matters.”

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Greyson Neal Turns 1! Photos courtesy of natasha kendle


6 1




Greyson Neal recently celebrated his first birthday at his parents’ home with close family and friends. Greyson is a fan of “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” so it was only fitting that it be the theme of his party. His activity table was a big hit among guests. They also enjoyed reading the story. Afterwards, the kids sampled foods that the Very Hungry Caterpillar enjoyed in the book, as well as Greyson’s birthday cake, provided by the Blue Cake Company. The party was designed by The Kendle Group. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.


Hannah Hilson Turns 6! Photos by Rachael Kimble


Hannah Hilson recently celebrated her sixth birthday with friends at the Maumelle Equestrian Center. All the kids had a great time riding horses, painting horses and bobbing for apples. Everyone enjoyed a delicious cake from SweetR Cakes. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.


Birthday girl Hannah Shelia Fitts Presley Taylor Lilly Seagraves and Harper Sellers Mattie Berryman Painting Horse at the Equestrian Center Bobbing for apples Avery Bilon Jade Golatt



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Greyson Neal Birthday Cake Kathryn Mosby, Ava Viohl and Kaitlyn Mosby The Very Hungry Caterpillar was in attendance Jeffrey Mosby Morgan Neal




The Strongest Foundations

Start Early Anthony Offers Openings for PreK 3 – 8th Grade

It’s Not Just About Flowers

The Anthony School’s education program is structured to provide children with a strong foundation in academics, social skills and the fine arts. When your child learns how to be the best he or she can be, it sets them up for a lifetime of success.

Call 225-6629 to arrange for a private tour. If you’re looking for the right school for your child – three year olds through eighth grade – look no further than The Anthony School.

Special Order Cakes, Cupcakes, And More

Knight’s sUPER FOODs

501-843-8101 • Open Daily 7 am - 7 pm • 906 S. pine Street • CabOt

PREK3 Eighth Grade




7700 Ohio St.•225-6629

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isaiah turns 1! Photos by clay kannard


Isaiah recently celebrated his first birthday with friends at a circus-themed party. Everyone enjoyed having their pictures taken in the photo booth and the old-fashioned popcorn cart, as well as other delicious snacks, like cotton candy, animal crackers, circus peanuts, lemonade, sour cherries, lollipops and candy sticks. Isaiah’s cupcakes were made by Sam’s Club, and the circus decorations were purchased from the emmiecakes shop on




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Old State House Museum Holds Civil War Living History Event



Isaiah, the Ringmaster of the Day Little Sam clowning around Big brother Noah clowning around Kaden eating cotton candy Skye Charlize and Abigail Ashlynn, Makenna and Ashleigh The Herndon family hit the photo booth


Photos by Rachael kimble

The Old State House Museum in Little Rock recently held a living history event, recreating life in the state during the second year of the Civil War. Living history interpreters wore costumes and re-enactors displayed the everyday life of civilians and soldiers. Children enjoyed hands-on activities and old-fashioned games, including dance lessons and viewing historical items. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9.

Billy “Skunk” Ferguson Commemorative Sign Mike Warren Matt Hoffman Cris Slaymaker Josh (Judge Garland) and Olivia Marvin Boyce and Mackenzie Taylor Tess Kidd and Pody Gay Dance lessons

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(501) 375-2257 323 South Cross Street • Little Rock Tues-Fri 10-6 • Sat 9-3 • Sun & Mon Closed

Now Enrolling For The 2013-14 School Year ✟ Preschool – High School ✟ Nationally Accredited and State Licensed ✟ Academic Excellence In A Small Class Setting ✟ Affordable Tuition ✟ Before and After School Care Available ✟ Extracurricular Activities and Clubs Available

We Bring Fun To The Heart!

Clean, Affordable & FUN Bounce houses, slides, concessions and more We have what you need to make your special event a success!

Avilla Christian Academy Christ Centered, Grace Driven

(501) 316-0922

Make Your Reservation TODAY!

302 Avilla East, Alexander, AR

501-833-0542 •

“After Jacob was born, our doctor

“When Onetold cameus to something get came Angel out and Trevor we knew that he was was wrong with his heart. He already in the best possible asked where we wanted to go. hands.”



We told him to get us to Children’s.”


rom Angel One Transport to our Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Arkansas Children’s Hospital is the best place for your tiny miracle. The specialized care begins when Angel One comes to your hospital to pick up your baby and continues on arrival at the only NICU in the state that offers comprehensive neonatal intensive care. ACH is the only hospital in Arkansas that has neonatologists at the hospital 24/7 and other specialists on-site that your baby might need. So if the unexpected happens and you don’t know where to turn, turn to Children’s. Angel One™ • NICU • Heart Center

Desiree and Brandon Byrd with 4-month old son, Trevor

Learn more at | Healing is in our nature. Baby on the way? Order our New Parent Planner at beginning February 1, 2013.

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Hayden Goodloe turns 3!


Photos by Rachael Kimble


Hayden Goodloe recently celebrated her third birthday with lots of friends at the Little Gym in Little Rock. The kids enjoyed dancing, swinging on bars, playing ball toss and other activities with the party leader. Hayden’s mini cake and cupcakes were made by Wal-Mart Bakery, and personalized water bottles were designed by Tish Bullard Events.

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1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8.

Hayden Goodloe Jurnee Loring Princess cupcakes Eric Ward Addison McGhee and Sariah Wolfe Party Guests Enjoying hotdogs and cupcakes Kindy Nelson


Patrick Pyne turns 6! Photos by Rachael Kimble


Patrick Pyne recently celebrated his sixth birthday with a Messy Party theme. The kids had a blast painting a giant mural with Patrick in it, pouring goo over his head, as well as having a pudding pie eating contest, silly string fight, egg and water balloon toss, and a shaving cream slip and slide to help clean everyone off! All of the kids had a change of clothes to go home in. 1. 2. 3. 4.

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Patrick Pyne Ella Solloway, winner of the pudding pie eating contest Enjoying tug-of-war Back row: Caroline Solloway, Katherine Ward, Ella Stalls, Drew Newton, Anderson Kircher, Alice Zwada, Bentley Ward, Ella Palacious, Patrick Pyne, Elliot Sloan Cozad, Reese Stalls, Bella Needham and Barrett Burke; Front Row: Ella Solloway, Anna Zwada, Chandler Kircher, Lucas Palacious, Paisley Wolf, Presley Pyne, Zach Needham, Elijah Wolf and Petra Pyne Slip-and-Slide! More Slip-and-Slide! Reese Stalls Patrick Pyne

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Sloan Spencer Turns 1!


Photos by patrick jones

Sloan Spencer recently celebrated her first birthday with friends and family at the Sylvan Hills Church of Christ Family Life Center in Sherwood. All the kids enjoyed the bounce house, play tunnel, hula hoops and activity tables, with puzzles, crayons, coloring books and games. Instead of gifts, party guests brought toys, which will be donated to Arkansas Children’s Hospital. Everyone enjoyed a delicious cake made by Rachel Henry. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10.

Sloan Spencer, birthday girl Allie Wright Preston Wright Evelyn Sparrow Halle Harvey Bowen Parker Cake by Rachel Henry Ava Rodgers Alexis King Presley Lada


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Fashion Flash: Spots Are IN


Zoo newcomers Zazi and daughter Maggie are setting the style on the “catwalk” of the new Laura P. Nichols Cheetah Outpost. If you want to be in style too, do the zoo – all the coolest cats will be there. #1 Zoo Drive • Little Rock, Arkansas • 501.666.2406 • Like us on m




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Aniyah Campbell Turns 3!


Photos by Rachael Kimble

Aniyah Campbell recently celebrated her third birthday at the Little Gym in Little Rock. Aniyah and her friends had a great time playing together and having their faces painted by Flutter the Butterfly Clown from Add Sum Balloons in Sherwood. Aniyah’s cake was custom made from the Blue Cake Company.



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Aniyah Campbell Kennedi Thomas Cake Kyleigh Dishman with Aniyah Campbell Zoey Henson Kennedi Thomas Myiah Baker with Aniyah Campbell Aniyah, Malayshia Faison, Kyleigh Dishman and Kennedi Thomas


Maggie James Turns 5! Photos courtesy of elizabeth james

Maggie James recently celebrated her fifth birthday with her closest friends at a Pajamas, Pancakes and Pedicures party. The girls arrived in their pajamas and enjoyed confetti pancakes in the shape of her initials. The girls decorated purses with glitter, jewels and their initials. Later everyone enjoyed a pedicure by Maggie’s aunts. The girls concluded the evening with a Wii dance party under the disco ball in Maggie’s living room. Maggie and her cousin, Caroline Riley 2. Avery Smith and Chloe Grandfield 3. Riley Clinton and Elizabeth Flaming 4. Maggie James 5. Ann Katherine Svoboda and Elizabeth Flaming 6. Mackenzie O’Leary and Jill Jordan 7. Wii dance party 8. Maggie and party guests 9. Bella Hancock and Olivia Bean 10. Maggie-shaped pancake









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Cupcake Bar & Gift Shop 521 W. Main Str eet • Cabot Thursday-Fr iday 10 am-5:30 pm Satur day 11 am-4 pm WE DO BIRTHDAY PARTIES! ryontop



savvyKiDS Birthday Party Planning Guide Spring Break Activities Summer Camp Preview Want to grow your business and be seen by thousands of families? Contact Michelle Miller at (501) 375-2985 or

19010 Cantrell Road Little Rock, AR 72223 Little Rock Christian Academy is recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan, as a 2012 Blue Ribbon School. Out of 100,000 schools in America, 269 were given the Blue Ribbon distinction. Little Rock Christian was recognized as an exemplary high performing school in the elementary, middle, and high school divisions. “Little Rock Christian is a model of excellence that will inspire others.”

— Arne Duncan U.S. Secretary of Education

Limited Openings. Call Today!

Schedule your personal tour today!

(501)868-9822 •

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Cold on the Outside, Warm on the Inside Make your own Blubber Project by Museum of Discovery

Put your coats on; it’s cold out there! While your kids are bundled up from the chill, it’s a great time to teach them how animals in the Arctic stay warm. Blubber is a thick layer of fatty tissue that can be found in animals such as penguins, whales and dolphins. This tissue works to insulate from the cold as well as store energy for when food is scarce. What you need: Three large plastic zip bags Tape Scoop or large spoon Shortening A bucket of ice water

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What to do: Scoop shortening into one zip bag until it is halfway full. Place another plastic bag inside the bag with shortening (this will keep hands clean). Tape the bags together at the top in order to keep them from sliding. To show what it would be like in the cold without blubber, place the third (and un-used) plastic bag over your child’s hand and put that hand in the ice water. BRRRRRR! Now, place the blubber bag over your child’s hand and put in the ice water. Much better!

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Happy Valentine’s Day from Pinnacle Pointe Hospital The Pointe Outpatient Behavioral Health Services offer the same quality care for all ages. When your family needs help, please contact a facility near you. Pinnacle Pointe helps families learn to live calmer, happier, and more productive lives by providing high quality behavioral health treatment programs.

Let good things happen for your family. Contact us for a free and confidential assessment by calling 1-800-880-3322.

Pinnacle Pointe Behavioral HealthCare System BEST BEHAVIORAL HEALTH FACILITY

Acute Inpatient Residential Inpatient Outpatient School-Based PINNACLE POINTE Behavioral HealthCare System 1-800-880-3322 11501 Financial Centre Parkway Little Rock, AR 72211 “TRICARE” is a registered trademark of the TRICARE Management Activity. All rights reserved.

2011 Governor’s Quality Award | 2009 President’s Award for Outstanding Juvenile Programs | 2011 & 2008 ATRS Facility of the Year 64 | savvy kids february 2013

Savvy Kids February 2013  

Prom special, vocational training for special needs, leg braces, understanding teen suicide, and more.