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Early Intervention Navigation Inside this issue:

All You Need is Love: • Semi-Charmed Married Life • Va-Va-Voom Valentines • Heart Healthy Tips

household SAFET Y Tips

2013 Summer Camp Guide Inside

From Beautiful Smiles to Sound Sleep.

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Table of Contents mom 2 mom 6 The Day After: Coping with the Sandy Hook Tragedy 8 Get Acquainted with NJ’s Early Intervention Program

moms R women 2 10 Marriages Made from Reality 12 Getting to the Healthy Heart of the Matter 14 Confessions of a (Former) Student/Mom

features 20 Turning Paradise Into a Warm Family Memory: Barceló Maya Palace Deluxe 32 Summer Camp Guide

know 2 grow 22 24 26 29 30 31

It’s All Fun and Games: How to Survive and Enjoy Family Game Night Something to Smile About Live, Love, Laugh on Valentine’s Day Diaper Decisions! Cloth or Disposable Walking in Their Footsteps: South Jersey’s Underground Railroad Send Bathroom Dangers Down the Drain

also in this issue 15 16 18 37 38

recipe corner business spotlight: kid academy making a difference things to do resource guide

Dear Readers,


ebruary holds a dear place in my heart, and it has to do with – you guessed it! Love!!! 17 years ago, I met my husband Brian at a friend’s wedding. After gorging on a leftover slice of wedding cake for breakfast the next day, we toured the City of Brotherly Love and spent 13 hours together on the best date I’ve ever had. I look back on the day as a major milestone that put my future in a romantic tailspin, leading me to relocate to South Jersey, get married and welcome my two new loves, my children; and somehow end up writing about it here. It’s hard to believe that after anticipating overblown romantic scenarios, inspired by watching too many “Love Boat” episodes as a young girl, that a last-minute date made, where I wore an old sweatshirt and ragged jeans, could cement my love life. Do you remember the early heady days with your spouse/significant other? Or have you forgotten the reasons you’re together amid the stressors of kids, work and home? Unfortunately, it’s not always hearts and flowers or even Fifty Shades of Gray, but remembering those thrilling days of your relationship can be the glue that holds it all together when hairline cracks appear. Take it from writer and 29-year marriage veteran Deb McCarson who wrote the article entitled, “Marriages Made from Reality.” She offers that marriages are a work in progress and that the fantasy of marriage doesn’t match the reality so throw out those fantasies and so-called “expert” advice; and enjoy the contentment that comes from your own REAL marriage, warts and all. That being said, commemorate Valentine’s Day by expressing your love to all

februARY H 4 Sahara Sams Passes “Like” South Jersey MOM magazine on Facebook and find out about local events, win prizes and connect with other moms in the area! www.

letter from the editor

February 2013

your beloveds with little gestures and new traditions. Relive the tale of how mom and dad became a couple (despite a snicker or two from the peanut gallery) or the day you discovered a new life and love -a new baby -- was on the way. Read Dolores Hoffman’s article, “Live, Love, Laugh on Valentine’s Day” for suggestions on how to spend the day with your children and your significant other, both together and one-onone. Love yourself or no one else will – maybe, maybe not . What you can do is take care of yourself and your family by maintaining a healthy heart. In “Getting to the Healthy Heart of the Matter,” Dr. Trina L. Gipson-Jones gives advice on protecting the one thing that we want to keep beating – our hearts. To go along with heart health, start your kids early by developing good teeth brushing habits as found in Christi Fox’s article, “Something to Smile About.” Studies have shown that taking good care of your teeth also benefits your heart. Let love rule this month, and, hopefully, you’ll set aside some time to “love” our magazine. Thanks so much to all the friendly faces (moms, families, staff and vendors) who participated in our annual Summer Camp Expo! Keep up to date with what’s going on at South Jersey MOM by visiting our website, or our Facebook page, SouthJerseyMOM.✲ Your friend and fellow MOM, M.B.


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South Jersey February

MOM 2013

CEO/Publisher Christopher Ognibene • (609) 670-1794 Executive Editor M.B. Sanok Marketing & Business Development Specialist Michelle Scianni • (856) 986-9606 For General Advertising Inquiries: Marissa Josephick • (856) 537-7089 Jennifer Kahoun • 856-906-7260 Randi Wall • 609-412-5888 Chris Ognibene • (609) 670-1794 Production Manager Lisa Celfo Photographer Perfect Day Photography (856) 241-3850 Contributing Writers American Camp Association, Lisa Ann Panzino DiNunzio, Sarah Donza-Hughes, Christi Fox, Samantha Gill, Dr.Trina L. Gipson-Jones, Dolores Hoffman, Carolyn Leigh Kellerman,Victoria Marie Lees, Deb McCarson, Dr. Kelly N. Moore, Fiona Paterna, Andy Pritikin Submit Calendar Listing:

Valentine Collages-Sharing the Love


o you enjoy Valentine’s Day with your kids, even the youngest of children? Do they take Valentine cards to school and bring home lots of them? It’s hard to imagine a child in need of love but perhaps your child can design Valentine posters using these cards to share with children who are less fortunate, children who live in a shelter or sick in a hospital. Buy a package of Valentine cards that are just used for artwork. Help your child cut out the designs and then paste them on a large piece of paper or even poster board. These would make great decorations for your home but imagine how nice they would be for children who could use a few extra hearts on Valentine’s Day – well, every day! Share the love from your family with these children, and take your children to deliver them to a place nearby. Drive with your children and go with them inside a hospital, for example, to give this art to the receptionist at the desk. Take their picture handing the receptionist the poster and, I bet, this one little act of kindness will be remembered a long time, and the love you shared will be passed around again and again. Not only a South Jersey Mom, Sharla Feldscher is a proud South Jersey Grandmom (Grammy, as she prefers to be called). The author of six books on creative ideas to do with young children, including two KIDFUN Activity Books published by HarperCollins, she has a blog at with more easy-to-do KIDFUN ideas. Sharla has her own public relations business in Philadelphia. A real kid-believer, she began her career as the first PR Director of the Please Touch Museum and started her own business with Sesame Place as her first account, representing the park for 26 years. Created by Markations Adam Nichols • (215) 825-7499 Superior Graphics Print Management LLC publishes South Jersey MOM™ monthly and distributes it throughout the region. The publication is available free of charge at select locations. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part is not permitted without the authorization of the publisher. Superior Graphics Print Management, LLC Publisher of South Jersey MOM P.O. BOX 268 Wenonah, NJ 08090 Main: (609) 670-1794 Fax: (856) 210-1524

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On the Cover Cutest Kid In Town Winner: Sofia is 7 1/2-years old and has several hobbies. She does ballet and gymnastics, and she also plays piano. Of course she loves to dance and sing and have pajama parties with her friends. She has 2 turtles (Jasmine and Ariel). She loves to spend her time at the beach with her friends. Her favorite show is Fantasia. She is a very good cook and she likes to make meatballs and lasagna. She likes to go to school and she is a very good student. Photo taken at Barcelo Resort.

February 2013 | 5

mom 2 mom

The Day After –

Coping with the Sandy Hook Tragedy

Beautiful Angels (In Memory of Newtown) By Carolyn Leigh Kellerman

Dear beautiful children and teachers up above, We’ve never met a single day but my heart is filled with love. I believe God has chosen you to make this world a better place, But I can’t help cry and feel empty too every time I see your face. Hugs are tighter, more kisses are given, our view of life has changed, Because of you, I know the nation will have gun control rearranged. Stars above are not just stars it’s all of you shining bright, Shining down upon this earth hoping that change will make it right. I hope you know your bravery and love will always be right here, In our hearts and in our prayers, your spirit is always near.

By Carolyn Leigh Kellerman


n Friday, December 14, 2012, we encountered the worst tragedy ever to happen in the United States. Twenty beautiful, innocent children and six adults were murdered at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT. I have never been so affected by a tragedy before, and I know many of us feel the same way. We’re all asking ourselves the same question. Why? How could anyone do this? The day after the tragedy, I received a letter from the Cherry Hill School District providing us with resources about how to discuss the issue with our children. I was very appreciative of the letter and information sent to me; however, I was hoping for information on how adults should cope with the tragedy. I would cry every time I saw coverage on TV, and would wake up in the middle of the night thinking about it. Then I would walk into my children’s rooms and give them another kiss goodnight. Every morning I would wake up and wish I could turn back time and make it all go away. I wish I could send them all home to their families. So how do adults deal with the tragedy? Here are some tips to help us cope with this particular situation.

Stick with low-key exercises such as yoga, walking or biking. Heavy exercise can increase your stress when you’re feeling anxious.

Turn Off the T.V. The media’s job is to provide in-depth coverage of important events. The more you watch, the more you become obsessed with it. I know we all want to learn every detail about the event, but when you begin to feel anxious or become depressed; the best thing to do is to stop watching.

I will always wonder why this happened, but what I do know is that every time I look at my children now, I truly value their precious lives. In general, I view life differently. I view religions differently and have so much respect for everyone in this world. I believe in God more than ever and want to do more for this country to make it better. Life is such a precious gift. Make every day with your children worthwhile. Hug them tighter, tell them “I love you” more, spend ten more minutes reading their favorite book, for you never know when it’s time to say goodbye.✲

Take a Walk Getting out in nature, even if it’s a cold winter day, helps to relieve stress and anxiety. And when our bodies are gently moving, the blood flows, the oxygen flows and each step can make us feel lighter and more hopeful. 6 | February 2013

Surrender We cannot bring back a loved one that has passed or change a natural disaster. Surrendering to a situation that cannot be changed and accepting it can help us release and honor our grief in a healthy way. Volunteer Helping others in need is a perfect way to reduce our anxieties. There are many charities always looking for people to help out. So roll up your sleeves and get started. Give Back to the Community I was on Facebook one morning and saw that a woman paid it forward to someone at Dunkin Donuts in memory of Newtown, so that morning I decided to do the same thing. I bought the man’s coffee behind me and told the teller to say it’s in memory of Newtown. It was the best feeling I’ve ever had. I encourage you to do the same!

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February 2013 | 7

Get Acquainted with

NJ’s Early Intervention Program By Samantha Gill


t my younger daughter’s 12-month visit, the doctor asked the standard developmental questions. I answered ‘no’ to most of them and became worried. At the 15-month visit, I worried before I even went as I started noticing her struggling. When asked about her development, I still answered with ‘no’s’. I left troubled. Upon the doctor’s advice, I enrolled her in a pre-school setting. After one week, I received a call stating that my daughter was displaying developmental delays. I thought, “What do I do? Who do I call?” Coincidentally, while frustratingly dialing a disconnected number from my doctor, a friend overheard me. Like me, she’s a social worker, except her expertise is with children. Immediately, she knew who to call. I was very lucky to have her since many parents don’t know about Early Intervention.

areas of speech, occupational or physical therapy, developmental intervention, social work, assistive technology, family education, audiology services and several other areas.” Jessica continues that she “typically works on goals that focus on increasing communication/language, feeding and oral motor weaknesses. …The main goals [are] for the child to express their wants and needs to their family members and caretakers…not necessarily verbal communication but first just successful communication...”

What is Early Intervention (EI)? Stacy Ichinaga, a Service Coordinator for the Southern New Jersey Perinatal Cooperative (SNJPC), explains EI is a “voluntary program designed to provide families with activities, strategies and therapies for children to meet developmental milestones…ages birth to 3. A family can receive an evaluation at no cost if they have concerns for developmental delays... A child would need to meet criteria in order to be eligible...”

How does a parent contact EI and what happens next? Stacy states that the parent or guardian should call the “referral line [at] 1-888-653-4463. Information is then collected and an evaluation is scheduled in the family’s home. If the child is determined eligible, a Service Coordinator…will follow up with family…in pursuing voluntary services. Cost for services are reviewed, and a plan is developed to address each child’s individual needs.”

How does a child qualify? Free evaluations are done using standardized testing tools to determine eligibility. State and Federal Governments fund EI, and a family co-pay (Cost Share), is determined by family size and income. Speech Therapist, Jessica Mattiace, M.A., CCC-SLP, works full-time for Upper Township. When she worked for the Ventnor School District, she became involved with EI. During meetings with parents to determine whether testing is warranted, she frequently heard parents say they didn’t know about EI or were told to “wait and see” if their child “caught up. Jessica says, “…Often, by the time these parents were able to begin services, the child was only a few months away from aging out of EI, which is the day before their 3rd birthday... I decided to try and help... I could spread the word about services available [and] help families...” What happens once a child is accepted into EI? Jessica states, “Each child has their own IFSP, Individualized Family Service Plan [which is]… developed by the family, therapists and service coordinator to address the specific needs of that child. Goals could be in the 8 | February 2013

How does EI benefit children under the age of 3 with delays? “…Early detection and intervention is the best and more successful method in treatment. EI offers so many wonderful services to families… Children with identified delays or disabilities may be able to begin school at 3,” says Jessica.

The best part of her job, Jessica says, “…is working with the families and being able to help them with their daily lives and routines…to give parents helpful hints or techniques that allow daily activities to become a little easier. Since a lot of therapies are only once a week, the support and involvement of the parents becomes very important. It’s very fulfilling when you…see the parent and child successfully using what you taught them.” I thank the day my friend helped me find EI. My daughter is still receiving therapy and gets so excited to see each therapist. (see picture) As we continue down this path, I realize I have support for my daughter and look forward to her successful future. For more information about EI, you can visit the website:✲ Samantha Gill is a full-time Geriatric Social Worker, full-time Mommy and writer from Northfield, NJ, with her daughters, Audrey and Addie. Addie has chronic lung disease, developmental delays and was recently diagnosed with PMG (Polymicrogyria), a neurological disorder; Early Intervention has made all the difference in Addie’s progress.

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February 2013 | 9

moms R women 2

Marriages made from

Reality By Deb McCarson


re you on a quest for marital bliss? Apparently many of us are. Books on marriage frequently top the bestsellers’ list. In our desire to make our marriages great, we have followed the relationship experts to Venus and Mars, learned five new love languages, and discovered seven principles for making marriage work. We have even learned the proper care and feeding of husbands. These books are very good. They offer helpful and practical advice. However, what I’ve discovered after reading countless books on the subject over 29 years of marriage is summed up nicely by what one wise woman posted on Pinterest: “What screws us up most in life is the picture in our head of how it is supposed to be.” By all means, take advantage of the wealth of advice offered by relationship experts, but be careful of losing yourself, and your spouse, in the deep sea of self-help. If you find yourself constantly referring to the latest manuals, make sure you come up for air occasionally to check on the reality of your own marriage. Too much time in the the annals of marriage therapists and we can find ourselves becoming not ourselves at all, but instead, a conglomerate of what bestselling authors say we should look like. We turn into women our husbands don’t recognize. This isn’t to suggest that we shouldn’t change and grow. Of course we should, and so should our husbands. However, if we want our marriages to be better, it means we feel something isn’t quite right; something is missing; something has to change. If we go through great efforts to make that change happen and it doesn’t, things will probably get worse. Although simple, the principles of St. Assisi’s great prayer hold true to every area of life in which we desire change including marriage. We need to accept graciously what we cannot change; we must have courage to change what we can; and we must have the wisdom to know the difference. In marriage, we discover, it’s very difficult to change our husbands. Likewise, it can be just as difficult to change ourselves.We want to be ourselves. We want someone to accept us as we are. We want things the way we want them. 10 | February 2013

At times, marriage can seem like the best and worst relationship we’ve ever had. It’s the most work, but the most worth it. We tend to blame ourselves and our husbands for things that go wrong without recognizing that relationship building is a universal struggle. Most of us know if we need to adjust our attitudes. We don’t need a plethora of selfhelp books to tell us that. If you’re trying to change your husband, well… good luck with that. Just don’t waste too much time on the picture in your head of how it’s supposed to be. If you find yourself frustrated from constantly trying in vain to “fix” things, stop it. Instead, peel off any layers of fruitless labor until you find what’s strong in your marriage. There’s your foundation. Build on that. Chances are, you won’t find any expectations there. You’ll find the reason you fell in love with your husband. It’s where you can find each other again. It’s where you remember who you both are, and what you’re intrinsically driven to accomplish as individuals. It’s where you’ll remember why you admire each other, and why you thought being married to each other would work in the first place. Remove the picture in your head of how it’s supposed to be, and you might find you actually like the picture of how it is.✲

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February 2013 | 11

Getting to the

Healthy Heart of the Matter By Dr. Trina L. Gipson-Jones


ardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States; one in every three deaths is from heart disease and stroke, equal to 2,200 deaths per day (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2012). The way you combat heart disease is by living a heart-healthy lifestyle. February is Heart Health Awareness month, and unfortunately, heart disease and stroke has touched far too many of our loved ones. Here are some family-friendly heart-health tips. Eat Right We have become a society of convenience, and as a result, eating fast food is the “new normal.” We’re not saying that you should never eat at a fast food restaurant, but what we are saying is limit your visits and make healthier choices when you do visit those establishments. Cooking at home allows you to control the ingredients in your dishes and make substitutions. The goal is to consume fewer foods with sodium (salt), saturated fats, trans fats, cholesterol, added sugars and refined grains. Increase your family’s intake of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fat-free and low-fat dairy products, and fish. Add some fun to food preparation. Involve your children in shopping for and cooking the family meals. Let them select dishes that they would like to prepare. Teach your children to select different colors of fruits and vegetables for each meal. During snack time, make the healthy choice the easy choice by providing water, fat-free milk, multi-grain crackers, sugar-free popsicles, and unsweetened, fat-free yogurt. Get Your Family Moving Decrease the amount of screen time (e.g., television, video games, computer use, etc.) that your child engages in per day. Not all screen time is bad. Interactive video games can be a great way for the family to get exercise when they cannot go outside. However, when able, encourage your child to go outside and walk around the neighborhood, ride their bike or skate. Children learn from role modeling, so play with your child. Go outside, run, jump and play catch with him/her. These activities help your child to hone their balance and coordination while building stamina and strength. Playing with your child also lets him/her know that you value fitness. Children should exercise or be active for at least 30 minutes per day. You can be creative and break their sessions into three 10-minute segments, two 15-minute segments or 5-minute increments. Just move!

Stress Management All family members experience stress. The most important way to teach your child to manage his or her own stress is to effectively manage your own stressful situations. Remember you lead by example. Notice when something seems to be bothering your child. Talk to your child, letting him or her know your concern. Listen to issues attentively with patience and caring. Reinforce your child’s feelings by re-stating his or her thoughts. This demonstrates that you understood your child’s feelings and that you care. When your child feels understood, he/ she will feel supported, which is helpful in stressful times. Help your child to brainstorm ways to solve issues. Having your child actively participate in solving his/her own problems builds confidence and critical thinking skills. Be there for your child. Just let your child know he/she has a listening ear to turn to. Spend some time with your child. Go on a walk, shoot some hoops or make a meal together; your presence, alone, can be supportive.✲

Check out the Following Heart Health Resources: 12 | February 2013

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February 2013 | 13

Confessions of a (Former) Student/Mom By Dr. Kelly N. Moore Ask and Receive Help, and Then De-stress: This part was pretty hard for me to do, but I had no choice, and now, as a working mother, I still have to work on this issue. When there’s a big exam or deadline for a paper or group project due, having supportive people in your life that can help babysit, cook dinner or help with some household chores is very helpful. But take caution -- it can be difficult for people to adjust their schedules on the spot if you need them. Try to plan ahead and anticipate when you’ll need additional help (and you will need it!). Also, use your spirituality, fitness routine or meditation as a means to cope with the stress. Identify a Faculty/Staff Member or Student that Understands and Supports Your Experience: This advice is not for the faint of heart. The fact is that, in some cases, professors and staff may not be very sympathetic to your experience. Sometimes, however, the most unexpected sources of support can be found. Start with talking to other students that you know have children and ask them how they’re managing. Support systems may sound cliché, but they’re invaluable when you’re trying to balance major school projects and your kids’ homework, activities, etc.


purposely mentioned being a “former” student/mom in this article’s title because I somehow made it to other side, survived the unique experience of being a full-time student/mom/wife in graduate school. I entered my doctoral program knowing that chances were pretty high that I’d want to start a family during the course of those five years, having already been married several years at the time of enrollment. By the end of year two, I welcomed a beautiful baby boy, and while I bonded with him over the summer, I studied for comprehensive exams. Sounds like a simple sentence, right? Well, it wasn’t easy, but I made it through. Here are some things to think about if you’re struggling through this process or wondering what it’ll be like to get through it: Focus on the Goal: For most people, the decision to pursue education is to prepare ourselves for better opportunities as far as jobs, pay and quality of life. Being a student

14 | February 2013

often means having homework, group projects, practicum, meetings, and for doctoral level degrees, the dreaded dissertation. I’d really try to keep focused on my ultimate goal and think about how it would afford me opportunities to have flexibility in my work and an income that would allow for a great lifestyle for me and my family. Get a Routine: This is good advice for any mom but is even more important for moms that are in school (full or part-time). Have a plan of what days will be your study days, where you will study, what your class schedule will be, etc. Plan ahead by requesting to see course schedules for upcoming semesters so that you can plan your days and nights for a full academic year. Knowing where you’ll be and when you have to be there in advance will help you plan for your family’s adjusted routine while you pursue your academic goals. This leads me to my next point

Take Advantage of Resources: Did you know that many universities have areas for lactating moms to pump breast milk? Or that, as a student, you may be able to get discounts for on campus child care services? There are many resources that universities have for student moms, but don’t be afraid to develop new support groups or other resources if you feel that there’s a need. Many of these programs that are already in place are a result of moms expressing a need and universities obliging. Essentially, the points highlighted here are what helped me get through the last three years of graduate school as a mom.There were some very hard nights, and even some tears here and there, but I kept my focus on the fact that I went into school for a reason, and I was determined to finish what I started. I also wanted to make sure that my son knew that Mommy worked really hard in school in order to do the kind of job she loves and to be able to give them a great life. Those thoughts not only helped me through my academic journey, but also helped me to treasure those moments with my little one and husband even more.✲ Visit our website and sign up for our e-newsletter

By Lisa Ann Panzino DiNunzio

Express your feelings creatively this Valentine’s Day by serving up any one of these easy, tasty recipes to your loved ones, and I do believe they’ll receive your “I Love You” message loud and clear!

Heart-Shaped Roasted Potatoes 5 large potatoes Extra-virgin olive oil 2 garlic cloves, finely minced Sea salt, to taste Black Pepper, to taste 1 tsp. dried or fresh rosemary (optional) • Preheat oven to 400°. Peel potatoes and cut them into ½ inch rounds. Using a small heart-shaped cookie cutter, cut out as many hearts as you can. Grease a baking pan with non-stick cooking spray, then place heartshaped potatoes onto the baking pan. • Drizzle potatoes with olive oil. Sprinkle garlic, sea salt, black pepper and herbs over potatoes. Roast them for 20-30 minutes or until they are golden brown and fork tender. • Gently turn the potatoes over during roasting if needed.You can also put potatoes under the broiler for 1–3 additional minutes if you like them extra crispy -- just keep an eye on them so they don’t burn. Serve gently so the potatoes hold their heart shape.

Dark Chocolate Peanut & Cranberry Clusters 8 oz. dark chocolate 3/4 cup roasted peanuts 3/4 cup dried cranberries • Melt dark chocolate in double boiler. Make chocolate clusters by mixing peanuts and dried cranberries in with the melted chocolate. Spoon a tablespoonful of the mixture into mini-muffin tin cups lined with decorative paper liners. Place mini-muffin tins into the refrigerator until chocolate clusters are firm. Serve. Note:You can use milk chocolate in place of dark, and you could use other nuts in place of the peanuts such as pistachios, walnuts or pecans, and this recipe can easily be doubled, if desired.

recipe corner

Send Culinary Love Messages

Super Easy Chocolate Fondue 3/4 cup heavy cream 1 pound milk or dark chocolate, broken into pieces Fresh strawberries Fresh pineapple chunks Banana slices Pretzel sticks Ridged potato chips • In a small saucepan over low heat, warm the cream and chocolate together, stirring until the chocolate completely melts. Transfer the fondue to a serving bowl, and serve fondue immediately with forks, fruits, and other snacks suitable for dipping. As always, Bon Appetit!

Lisa Ann Panzino DiNunzio is the author of “Seasoned With Love, Treasured Recipes” & “Lisa Ann’s Seasoned With Love II”, and the children’s book, “Snicker Learns An Important Lesson.” Visit her blog or Facebook page

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February 2013 | 15

business spotlight

! s w a P Meet S

tep aside, there’s a new dog in town representing KidAcademy Learning Centers, South Jersey’s leader in early childhood education. KidAcademy learning center has six private educational facilities in New Jersey. Our school has been educating young lives for 25 years. It’s with great excitement and enthusiasm that we introduce the newest addition to our family! Our mascot, PAWS, is a big, brown, furry and cuddly puppy who makes everyone smile! He’s cute and soft and loves to give High Fives! PAWS joins our KidAcademy family to enhance the already existing warm, nurturing and academic-based environment by visiting each of our schools frequently and sharing in your child’s early learning experiences. PAWS’ favorite thing to do is READ!! One of the fun and educational additions that will be brought to our program by our new mascot, PAWS, is our READY TO READ program. PAWS’ big job will be to bring new books to each of our schools every month for our teachers to share with the students. He will spend time in our reading circles and sharing in our new books! PAWS understands the importance of literacy in our community, and the need for early learners to be introduced to reading as a way for each child’s growth and development to blossom. KidAcademy Learning Centers’ already existing core curriculum offers the introduction to letters, colors, numbers and shapes. We have an extensive language program that assists each child with the evocation of language skills. Our teaching staff also provides each child with a sense of confidence with our self-navigation technique, where students self-propel their learning experiences through learning centers, computers, independent play as well as large and small group learning. Bringing our new mascot, PAWS, to our KidAcademy family will be yet another way to have our children see learning as a fun and exciting time in their young lives. As stated in our mission statement, our goal is to make learning FUN, and what’s more fun than sharing our world of early childhood education with a BIG, FURRY FRIEND!! In closing, KidAcademy recognizes the importance of caring for our community. After all, we’ve been an intricate part of educating and caring for children in this community for a quarter of a century!! Therefore, when PAWS is not reading with our students or hanging out at our school functions, he’ll be spending time at the local hospitals, pediatricians’ offices as well as helping with other community and charitable events. PAWS’ big mission is to bring a smile to each and everyone he meets! Who could help themselves from smiling when they see this big, brown, cuddly pup come their way! So be on the look out, PAWS is on the prowl!✲

For more information call 1-888-303-7104 or visit online at 16 | February 2013

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ENROLL NOW FOR SUMMER CAMP...COME JOIN THE FUN! Field Trips F Swimming F Game Days F Arts & Crafts F Theme Days F Special Guests Computers F Sing-A-Longs • Cooking F BBQs • Infants through school age • Full & part time programs • Flex hours • High reach curriculum • Spacious A/C buildings

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South Jersey’s Best Kept Secret in Child Care “25 Years of Educating for Success”

February 2013 | 17

making a difference

Jersey Shore

“Good Day, Good Night” Bag Drive


By Sarah Donza-Hughes

n the aftermath of the destruction left by Hurricane Sandy, local heroes are stepping up. From people who have grown up living at the shore to those who spent summers falling in love and watching their children play, so many have been emotionally affected. Recently I was invited to a Facebook book called Jersey Shore “Good Day, Good Night” Bag Drive by my new friend, Jen Burden, the Founder of World Moms Blog (my favorite social good blog!!).  Shannon Connolley-Maida and Nikki Maida-Ippolito, the women behind the Jersey Shore “Good Day, Good Night” Bag Drive, are two local heroes that are creating bags of happiness for children of the families that have lost so much. WHAT are these bags? Shannon came up with the idea, based on another bag drive that donates night time items to kids in homeless shelters. Shannon said she wanted to put together more for the kids who were suddenly thrown in to the world of shelters.The bags had to be able to have items that not only provided comfort, but kept infants through teens occupied during their days and nights at their shelters and hotels. Shannon says, “I kept picturing my own daughter, and what it would be like for her in a shelter or hotel room.”  See the suggested items checklist (although bag makers are encouraged to be creative!!). Shannon posted the idea on her own Facebook page, the Jersey Shore Moms Swap/Sell Site (another site she started and has grown bigger than she ever thought!) and the Central Jersey Moms Swap/Sell Site. Shannon expected about ten people to pitch in enough to make one run to a local shelter. BUT, within DAYS, this group grew exponentially, and they now have several people collecting the bags, transferring them and making many runs to shelters. They’re now starting to make some very big connections! Who are these women? Shannon and Nikki are very modest sister-in-laws who both credit the other for their amazingness while downplaying their personal awesomeness!  True heroes!  Shannon is the brain child who came up with the whole idea. Nikki calls herself Shannon’s willing sister-in-law who has taken in bags and delivered them to those in need. Shannon credits Nikki as being “an integral part of this movement by collecting bags, getting the word out to her momma friends, delivering the bags, getting contacts and helping me stay organized!”

Shannon, an 8th grade Social Studies teacher, was not born and raised in NJ. She’s originally from Baltimore and has lived at the Shore for almost 17 years. Shannon’s family spends every waking moment of the summer months in Monmouth Beach watching her daughter and Nikki’s son playing on the beach or in Grandma’s backyard. Nikki was born and raised on the Jersey Shore, spending every summer at Little Monmouth Beach Club in Monmouth Beach, NJ. That’s also where her mother resided until her home was flooded, making it uninhabitable. Nikki’s mother is now living with Shannon and her brother (and their 4-year old daughter) until her house can be rebuilt/restored So many others have been huge in helping spread the word and getting the bags to various shelters in the area.  They have teamed up with Soldiers Race Team who has been getting the bags directly to residents in Union Beach.  Shannon and Nikki want everyone to know that they have several fabulous people helping us out and actually doing the deliveries like Christine and Gary Mertz, Nicole Helme, Melissa Harris, Jen Burden; James, Shelli and Donna from Soldiers Race Team and so many more! It really is a true collaborative effort! Would you like to mail in bags? Check out Jersey Shore “Good Day, Good Night” Bag Drive’s Facebook page, groups/553253434701700 for details.✲ Sarah Donza-Hughes grew up in Staten Island, NY, and moved to NJ when she was 18 years old. She escaped working in New York City for a new life in Philadelphia, and started dating her now husband Rob.They have two children, Derek, 4, and Hayley, 2. Finnegan is their 5-year old Australian Shepherd (more like a third child than dog).  Read her blog at www.

18 | February 2013

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how Underwood saved my life. One summer day in 2009, BJ awoke knowing something was terribly wrong. She had severe pains in her chest and realized she might be having a heart attack. When she arrived at Underwood’s Emergency Department, she was quickly diagnosed and rushed to the cath lab where interventional cardiologist Dr. Kurt W. Kaulback performed the first stent procedure at Underwood. Quick treatment is key during a heart attack because time means muscle. Dr. Kaulback used minimally invasive surgery and had her artery opened up within 30 minutes. Her pain was gone and her heart attack was over. When every second counts, we’re just a heartbeat away.

If you’re concerned about your heart health, don’t wait. To learn more, visit

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February 2013 | 19

Turning Paradise Into A Warm Family Memory:

Barceló Maya Palace Deluxe

By M.B. Sanok


he crystalline turquoise blue sea is the star attraction at the Barceló Maya Palace Deluxe hotel, situated on one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, on the Mayan Riviera. Plan the family vacation of a lifetime that will soon become a warm memory. Barceló Maya Palace Deluxe, a 24-hour all-inclusive resort, provides beaches and lush landscapes beyond compare, luxurious amenities fit for royalty, and spectacular water and land activities, an ideal resort for the whole family. Located in Riviera Maya, Mexico, a short ride south from the Cancun Airport, Barceló Maya Beach Resort Complex is comprised of three sister resorts -- the Maya Palace Deluxe; Maya Colonial and Tropical; and Maya Beach and Caribe Beach -- founded by renowned hoteliers,

20 | February January 2013 2013

the Barceló family from Spain. On one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, with over two miles of fine white sand, crystal clear water and a stunning coral reef off-shore, the hotel, designed and built in the Mayan-inspired style, is surrounded by lush tropical gardens, beautiful paths, and trails for enjoying long walks or jogging. You’ll gasp in delight over the aquatic playground with the sparkling sea, rich with multi-colored fish, and 10 gigantic, gorgeous swimming pools and two elaborate children’s water parks. With three diversely priced resorts, you and your family can easily bask in paradise. Plentiful amenities and breathtaking scenery contribute the plush comforts you’ll experience. Suzanne Dulaney of Barceló describes it as a “lush, tropical oasis with amazing internation-

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al culinary delights.” The resort offers Deluxe Junior Suites that can accommodate a family of five or, if preferred, an upgrade to a Family Suite with separate bedrooms. An array of a dozen specialty restaurants and buffets, serving several types of mouthwatering cuisine, as well as 24-hour all-inclusive service, welcomes you to their tables. A special added feature at Maya Palace Deluxe is the famous Barcy buffet for young children. The variety of activities, surf and turf, will leave you exhausted yet exhilarated. Due to calm waves and no undertow, the gentle turquoise ocean beckons you to take a dip. Lifeguards monitor the beaches. Several, unique pools (the largest is two acres) featuring Jacuzzis; and two children’s water parks, cater to water lovers of all ages. All non-motorized water sports are part of the all-inclusive program which includes snorkeling, windsurfing, sailing, and kayaking. A PADI scuba diving program is offered at an additional cost. For you landlubbers, marvel at the excellent activities that await you: state-of-the-art spa and fitness facilities; mini-golf, soccer, tennis, basketball, beach volleyball; Ping-Pong, darts, archery; and beach games. Need a breather to soak in the serenity? Take a seat in the many relaxing areas around the resorts or ride the train that takes you to and from each resort. “Children, ages 4-12, can join in on the daily fun at the Barcy Kids’ Club where they’ll engage in exciting activities like beach and water games, along with video games, arts and crafts, contests, and more,” says Abigail Carranza, Sales Executive at Barceló Maya. A fully trained, qualified staff will mind the children while you whisk your mate away for some alone time, maybe to shop at the Maya shopping center, located within the resort. What resort would be complete without dazzling Vegas-style live entertainment? Barceló has nightly live music and theatrical shows in theaters throughout the resorts. “Another unique feature about the Barceló Maya resorts is that we are surrounded by the Mayan history ruins and ecological parks,” says Suzanne. Plan a trip to nearby Tulum where you can tour the Mayan ruins; Xcaret’s ecological/ archeological park; or shopping at Playa del Carmen. Zip-lining and swimming with dolphins excursions, along with championship golf courses, are available, too. A long-awaited family getaway or joyous family reunion can become warm memories at Barceló Maya Palace Deluxe. Contact your travel agent to book your trip or for more information at 1-800BARCELO or✲

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Enjoy maximum freedom, choosing from among a wide variety of activities for the whole family, or according to your individual tastes: land sports, water sports, entertainment activities such as contests, games, aqua aerobics, sports competitions, and night time shows in the theater.

The Riviera Maya is one of the best places in the world for diving and probably the best in the Caribbean and Mexico, since it combines clear waters with well-preserved reefs and the diversity of its flora and fauna.

February 2013 | 21

know 2 grow

It’s all Fun and Games:

How to survive and enjoy family game night

So it went something like this: I bought our first board game – Candyland — and brought it home. My 3-year old was beside herself excited and could barely wait to play. I was excited, too; I loved Candyland as a kid! We set it up on the kitchen table and then “all-toddler-game-night-H-Edouble-L” broke lose. Literally. I know the game says it’s appropriate for ages 2 and up -- and it is, but they failed to put in the directions how to handle game night with a toddler. You know, the child that has to do everything themself... their way.. only? The game ended in tears. Mommy was winning, and she got sent back to the “cupcake”. This was bad-news-board-game... crying, tears...and I did what I said NOT to do in an article back a few months ago and let her win. Amazingly enough, once she won the tears instantly disappeared, delight ensued, and “let’s play again!” was chanted over and over...yikes...

22 | February 2013

by Samantha Gill So what did I learn, you ask? Choose Your Battles: By battles I mean... do you, the Mom/Adult, really have to be your favorite color game piece? For Candyland sakes, let the kid pick their game piece first and then pause because 9 times out of 10 they will quickly change their mind to the one you’re eyeing let it go. Set the Tone: By tone I mean...prepare your child for the possibility of losing. Because, really, losing is okay, and they have to learn. As tempting as it is to let them win every time, fight the urge because it will only turn into them wanting to win every game. Plus when you really do lose you can show them how to be a good loser (i.e., “Wow, Lord Licorice really got me this time! Mommy lost, but it’s okay. I had such a good time with you,” and then you can secretly curse Lord Licorice out later.)

Set the Time: Announce how many times you’ll indeed play the game. Otherwise, it may turn into the Groundhog Day version of Candyland! “We’ll play 3 rounds of Candyland tonight, and then it’s bath time.” Let It Go: And by let it go, I mean, to let yourself and all of your Mommy duties go. Really. The dishwasher can be emptied later. The laundry can be folded (never!) another time. Give yourself over to your kids, really. Don’t look at your phone. NO texting. No updating your Facebook status to say:“Lord Licorice made me lose game # 107 to my 3-year old! Hate that guy!!” -- just really play with your kids. And that includes turning off the TV, too. In the grand scheme of things, that hour you spend with your kids really makes the difference. They really love that you spent time with them, and they really love that they may just beat you, too... but it’s ‘just a game’... right?✲

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In the Meadow we can Build a Snowman ....unless of course your lawn starts to bubble. Call English today and we’ll make sure your Septic System is properly maintained through these harsh winter months.

(856) 358-2518 EZ Pay Options Available. Follow Us On NO Extra Service Fees for night & weekend calls, same rates 24/7! • (856) 358-2518


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February 2013 | 23


Something to By Christi Fox


f you’re like a lot of moms out there, you may think that brushing your child’s teeth twice a day has them pretty well covered, right? Unfortunately, that isn’t always enough, especially if your child is cavity-prone. You may be surprised when your child’s dental check-up proves less than satisfactory. Early prevention is crucial to your child’s dental health. In most cases, a cavity won’t display signs or symptoms until it has penetrated into the inner layer of the tooth called the dentin. Routine dental exams can detect cavities before they’ve become problematic. According to, experts suggest that a child has their first dental visit within six months of their first tooth or by their first birthday. Dental Hygienist and mother of two, Donna Erianne, from Bridgeton, says that parents should start brushing their children’s teeth as soon as they come in because plaque will already start forming. This can be done with an infant tooth and gum cleaner that fits on the parent’s finger or by simply using a damp washcloth. Erianne also recommends against children sharing foods and drinks with others since research shows that the bacteria that causes

24 | February 2013


tooth decay can be transferred from one mouth to another. If your child is prone to cavities, sticky foods should be avoided such as dried fruit and gummy snacks. Erianne suggests that if you’re eating out and have no access to a toothbrush to either have your child rinse with water or chew sugar-free gum for approximately twenty minutes. Chewing gum increases the amount of saliva flow in the mouth which helps prevent plaque from sticking to the teeth. If you’re looking for something without aspartame, you can purchase chewing gum made purely from xylitol which is all-natural, sugar-free and fights against cavities. For more information, you can visit or Erianne also suggests anti-cavity rinses for children who are old enough to properly use them. Not only do these rinses loosen any remaining food particles that may have been missed while brushing, but they also add an extra dose of fluoride. “I always say to brush, floss and rinse before bedtime,” says Erianne. With proper dental care and prevention, you and your child can really have something to smile about✲

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the perfect gift for the expectant dad! (it’s as easy as A-B-C)

A. Buy the perfect gift. B. Surprise the Daddy-to-Be. C. Get ready for the big day!

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FEB 13-17 For a full show schedule and to buy tickets, go to,, Wells Fargo Center Box Office or call 1-800-298-4200 Regular Ticket Prices: $15 · $25 · $30 · $60 VIP $70 Front Row · $115 Circus Celebrity Visit our website and sign up for our e-newsletter

February 2013 | 25

h g u a L , e v Live, Lo ay D s ’ e n i t n e l a V on

By Dolores Hoffman


alentine’s Day was originally held to celebrate St.Valentine who sent the first known love letter to his beloved. Although Valentine’s Day is full of romance, it’s also a celebration of love and has become a time for families to celebrate together. Below are some creative ways to enjoy Valentine’s Day as a family. Decorate Remember when you made those paper doilies with the heart in the middle when you were little? Kids love crafts. Use materials found around the house like egg cartons, crayons, boxes, etc., to create your own valentine-themed masterpieces. Place them around the house, and decorate the table with candy conversation hearts and confetti. A friend of mine has a scavenger hunt each year. She hides hearts around the house with clues to the next heart, leading to a Valentine’s surprise for the kids. Valentine’s Dinner Involve the whole family in the meal preparation from setting the table to baking the dessert. Don’t think you’re limited to just the evening meal. Heartshaped pancakes and strawberry-flavored milk can set the tone for the day. For dinner, you can buy heart-shaped ravioli or pizza and combine kid-friendly foods like curly fries with ketchup. The children can make red Jell-o and chocolate-covered strawberries for dessert. Kids love to help in the kitchen! It’s a great way to spend more time together as a family and a great way to create lasting memories. Valentine’s Eve Party Valentine’s Day isn’t over after the dinner. You can play board games, make popcorn and watch a favorite family movie together or go out to see a movie. Most family-themed movies have a healthy dose of romance in them, and the theater is less likely to be busy because most couples stay at home or go to restaurants for Valentine’s Day. 26 | February 2013

Start a Tradition Every Easter, my grandmother would give us bathing suits as a gift. Why not start a Valentine’s gift tradition like buying new pajamas or a small gift for the kids? The tradition is what matters the most. Don’t forget the tiny heart-shaped box of chocolates; the day wouldn’t be complete without them! Share Your Love Story What better time than Valentine’s Day to tell your children your story as a couple — how you met and fell in love. Keep it sweet and age-appropriate.Your kids might roll their eyes but inwardly, they’ll love hearing their parents say nice things about each other. Kiss each other on the cheek, and watch them wrinkle their noses! Keep Your Date A good way to celebrate Valentine’s Day is to keep one night that week reserved for just you and your spouse. Making time for “Date Night” is always a challenge, but it’s important for a healthy marriage which benefits the children. So whether it’s a late night alone, time together or a dinner out, be sure to add this in around Valentine’s Day. Whether you’re married or a single parent, Valentine’s Day is an important reminder to share the wonder of love with your children, and even if you’re planning on doing something with your significant other this Valentine’s Day, remember to spend time as a family, too.✲

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Imagine what an increase in IQ of 15 to 20 points could do…


illy Simpson was a -year old kid struggling through his first year of high school. With his grades, college was out of the question. Now, Bill is a bright young man who is excelling in his junior year at a major university and looks forward to a lifetime of opportunities and success.

Andrea Kohler started out excited about school, but by the time she began third grade, she was discouraged, doubting herself and beginning to withdraw. Today, Andrea is enjoying fourth grade, getting fantastic grades, and showing renewed self-confidence. What made the difference for these two and thousands of others just like them?

The power of brain training.

“Brain training is a system of highly targeted exercises used to change your brain’s capacity to think and


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learn,” says Stephen Pearson, Executive Director of the new LearningRx Brain Training Center in Cherry Hill. “Brain training succeeds where tutoring and other programs have failed. Science has proven that brain training can strengthen learning and reading skills and increase IQ.” Brain training improves performance at school, at work, in sports, even behind the wheel of a car.

skills. “LearningRx is much different than tutoring,” says Stephen. “This program focuses on core cognitive skills that enable kids to learn more efficiently. LearningRx offers effective, affordable programs that help students of all ages perform better across the board. With LearningRx, I have a unique opportunity to help them boost their confidence in life and learning.”

Rather than tutoring or academics, LearningRx focuses on improving cognitive skills—the foundation for all learning. Strengthening cognitive skills such as Processing Speed, Working Memory, Auditory Processing, Visual Processing, Logic & Reasoning and Long-Term Memory will naturally produce faster and easier learning. In at least  of students, common learning struggles are directly connected to specific weak brain

You can learn more about the new LearningRx Brain Training Center by calling Stephen Pearson at (856) 348-3600.

9004 Lincoln Dr. West, Suite E Marlton, NJ 08053

To celebrate the Grand Opening of our new brain training center in Cherry Hill, we’re offering our comprehensive Brain Skills Assessment at half price! • Find out how well your son or daughter handles daily tasks like thinking, focusing, learning & remembering. • Uncover weak brain skills and learn how a customized brain training program can improve those skills and increase IQ.


(856) 348-3600 and schedule your child’s assessment today!

February 2013 | 27

king Ma

dreams come t Birthday parties with character appearances available at DANCE!


o n e li me! ttle girl at a ti

• Dancing with Mommy, ages 1 to 3 yrs old • Creative dance, ages 3 to 5 yrs • Hippity Hop, ages 4 to 6

856-227-9414 Whitman Plaza • 5360 Route 42 • Turnersville Additional classes available at DANCE! Ballet, Acro, Hip Hop, Musical Theater, Lyrical, Modern, Jazz, Contemporary, Vocal Private and Group Lessons, Tap & Irish Step Dance

28 | February 2013

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Diaper Decisions! Cloth or Disposable By Christi Fox


ne question that expecting mothers often ask themselves is whether to use cloth diapers or disposables. Years ago people used cloth diapers that they washed and dried and used over again. This was not only economically smart but safe for the environment and for their children. Well, today due to our recession and the awareness of going green, cloth diapers are making a huge comeback. There are so many chemicals in disposable diapers in order to make them absorbent which also makes them decompose at an extremely low rate. According to the Real Diaper Association, it takes over 300 pounds of wood, 50 pounds of petroleum feedstocks and 20 pounds of chlorine to produce disposable diapers for one baby each year. One disposable diaper is estimated to take between 250-500 years to decompose in a landfill. Now think about how many diapers one baby goes through in a day and then times that amount by 13,140, which is, on average, how many days a baby stays in diapers until potty-trained. That’s a lot of diapers to be dumped in a landfill for just one baby. Many women think that they may be too busy to use cloth diapers and disposable diapers are more convenient but that’s not necessarily the case anymore. Cloth diapers have come a long way. They’re not tedious as they were in the past. Instead of using the old-fashioned diaper pins, cloth diapers now come with covers that fasten with either Velcro or snaps that are adjustable and the cloth inserts are placed inside. There are also flushable, bio-degradable inserts that fit right inside the cover. Laurie Lowe from Wenonah and mother of three uses Flip diapers which are known to be user-friendly. “They are easy to wash, and you don’t need to buy a lot of covers. Once you use cloth diapers, it becomes second nature,” says Lowe. Other benefits and features of using cloth diapers are that they’re soft on baby’s skin, they greatly decrease the chance of diaper rash, and the covers come in many different colors and prints. There’s no question that cloth diapers are also a great economical investment. “I spent $175 in cloth diapers. It is amazing how much money is saved,” says Lowe. Since disposable diapers cost over $2000 on average for just one baby, this is a huge savings in the long run. Cloth diapers are the perfect way to go since, not only are they chemical-free, but they’ll also save parents a lot of money. If you really want to be economical, they can be used as rags once the baby is potty-trained as well. Cloth diapers beat disposables hands down. For a wide selection of cloth diapers, you can visit✲

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February 2013 | 29

Walking in Their Footsteps:

South Jersey’s Underground Railroad By Victoria Marie Lees


any people have heard of the Underground Railroad, a system of secret safe houses with conductors, people slaves could trust to lead them to safety. But did you know that NJ was a main corridor to freedom for slaves? During Black History month, why not visit local small museums to see where slaves actually hid in their flight to freedom? While many of the safe houses were run by Quaker abolitionists, some of the NJ Underground Railroad stops were run by free blacks and black community churches. The NJ Historical Commission together with the NJ State Library offer information and locations of many of the existing safe houses that are documented as part of the Underground Railroad in NJ. A few are still open to the public. Mount Zion African Methodist Episcopal Church, 172 Garwin Road in Swedesboro/Woolwich, was part of the “Greenwich Line” of the Underground Railroad in NJ, according to Dr. Karyn Collier. She explains that this line would have been used by Harriet Tubman as she traveled through the area. “A trap door is located in the vestibule of the church,” Dr. Collier says, “and visitors can view the area where slaves hid when the slave hunters came to town.” “In a local paper printed in the early 1800’s,” according to Dr. Collier, “a community of free blacks in Small Gloucester attempted a daring rescue of captured slaves in Swedesboro.” The rescue was a success, and the community hid the slaves at the Mount Zion Church until it was safe to travel to the next stop.” Call (856) 467-6228 to set up a tour of the church and surrounding cemetery. Linda Shockley is the President of the Lawnside Historical Society which runs the Peter Mott House,

30 | February 2013

26 Kings Court in Lawnside. Peter Mott was a free black farmer, according to Shockley, and would hide slaves either in the barn or shed on his property or in the basement or attic of his house. Mott’s job was to take the escaping slaves to the next safe houses on the Underground Railroad chain run by Quakers in either Haddonfield or Moorestown. Shockley says that the Peter Mott farm was located in an area known as Free Haven [Lawnside] in the Snow Hill section, a densely wooded area at the time of slavery. Although the barn and shed are no longer standing, visitors can visit the house and peer into the basement or attic where the slaves may have hid. The House is open on Saturdays, between noon and 3 p.m. Groups may request tours using forms found on the Mott website at or by calling (856) 546-8850, rates: $5 adult, $2 students. Bethany Benson King is Vice-Chairman of the Board of Directors at the Benson History Museum, 427 Pine Street in Lawnside, The museum is full of artifacts and photographs about the Underground Railroad and the historic town of Lawnside, “the only African American Incorporated Municipality in the Northern United States,” King says. Reverend James A. Benson, the founder of the Museum, gives this challenge to all visitors: “You must remember whose shoulders you are standing on.” This history is connected to present black culture, according to King. You may tour this museum Thursday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., but you need to call (856) 547-5189 for an appointment. Experience history by visiting actual sites of the Underground Railroad in South Jersey.✲

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s r e g n Da

Send Bathroom

Down the Drain By Fiona Paterna


he bathtub is an infamous location for doting parents snapping quintessential sudsy-face shots or recording tidal-wave-like splashing. However, bath time fun can go awry quicker than you can say “more bubbles!” Shampoo isn’t the only agent to ignite tears in the bathroom. In honor of January being National Bath Safety Month, follow these simple guidelines for a tear-free bath time and to preserve the bathroom’s positive reputation as a place for relaxation or fun year-round: General Rules • Supervise bath time of children ages 6 and under and be present whenever water is in the tub. • Do not permit older siblings to bathe younger siblings. • Keep doors closed when the bathroom isn’t in use. • Discuss bath safety with all caretakers. Prevent Drowning Fact: Babies can drown in as little as one inch of water! They usually drown in five gallon buckets, toilets, and bathtubs because of lack of supervision usually only for a short time. • Keep one hand on baby at all times including older babies who can sit up by themselves. (As a mother of a three-month old, I know he can slip under water within seconds with one powerful kick.) • Empty the tub after baths, and ensure it’s empty before exiting the room. • Place a lid-lock on the toilet. Prevent Slips, Falls, Electrocution, and Lacerations • Keep children seated by using a bath seat or offering bath toys. • Avoid slipping by using skid-free decals or a bath mat. • Check that a heavy shower caddy is securely adhered to the shower wall so it won’t fall upon bathers. • Store razors on the highest shower-caddy shelf. • Unplug and store electronics away from water sources. • Thoroughly dry the floor and feet and forbid running. Prevent Burns Fact: Baby’s skin, being thinner and more sensitive, burns more easily than adult skin. • Seat babies facing away from the faucet. • Test bath water with a wrist or elbow. • Just as you teach that an oven is hot, instill in children the concept that the faucet and the water pouring out of it may be hot. • Teach older children that red represents hot water and blue represents cold. • Set the temperature on a hot water heater to below 120 °F or install an anti-scald valve which does this automatically. • Put anti-scald devices on faucets that turn off the water if the temperature is too hot.

Prevent Drug Accidents • Store any (OTC and prescription) medicines in a locked cabinet. Children can use a stool or the toilet to reach and open an unlocked medicine cabinet. • Keep all medicines in original bottles with childproof caps. (Warning: Children have been known to open childproof caps!)✲ Fiona Paterna is an 8th-grade Language Arts teacher and owner of The Writing Emergency Room, a business that offers writing consultation and criticism and proofreading and editing services.

Sources: MedLine Plus, American Academy of Pediatrics, Safe Kids USA Visit our website and sign up for our e-newsletter

February 2013 | 31

summer camp guide

How to Choose a Summer Camp By Andy Pritikin, Liberty Lake Director


hen your kids have graduated the local Day Care, Rec. Program or “Camp Mom”, and you’re looking for the next logical step in giving a wonderful growth experience away from Gameboys, the internet and TV - Camp is the answer! Every summer over 12 million children attend Day Camps and Resident Camps across the country! Here are some helpful pointers: ACA ACCREDITED:vWhile county and state health departments have guidelines for Camps, American Camp Association standards are much stricter and will ensure the high quality supervision and facility that most parents want for their children.You can find the best camps in the country directly through the ACA website at find.acacamps. org.

what they need in regards to their specific childcare needs and session length flexibility. COST: There are Camps available for every budget, but as we all know - you get what you pay for. Many Private Camps offer extensive programs with mature, experienced staff and lots of amenities -- but subsequently come with a heftier price tag. Non-Profit camps (including YMCA-JCC programs) can offer less “spectacular” programming, younger staff and fewer amenities but can be an affordable alternative. What are the discounts offered, what’s the refund policy, and what are ALL the costs?

DAY CAMP vs. RESIDENT: Do your children wish to sleep in their own beds or away in the mountains in a cabin of new friends? Resident Camp is the “real-deal”, but Day Camp is the logical first step, and many Day Camp programs are very adept at keeping their older campers through progressive programming.

STAFF: Who’s directly interacting with your child? If it’s primarily middle-school and high school students, that’s something to be concerned about. The best Camps have teachers and college students running their programs with high school students simply assisting. **Very Important: Meet the director and speak with him/her in person, for it’s their personality and philosophy that trickles down to the rest of the Camp staff. You’re entrusting these people to take care of your children, and you need to be comfortable with them doing so.

LENGTH OF STAY, HOURS OF THE DAY: How many weeks? How many days per week? What time does it start? When can you drop your kids off? When can you pick them up? All important questions. In today’s world, families should be able to get

PROGRAM & FACILITIES: Go for a visit to see if the facility gives you a good feeling. Is there a pool or a lake? Is there daily swim instruction? Athletic fields? How extensive is the Fine Arts program -- Is it popsicle sticks or serious projects? Performing Arts?

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You need to decide what’s important to YOUR child. Is it computers and rockets or climbing towers and water trampolines -- or a diverse mix? AMENITIES: These items are “icing on the cake”, but are very important to most working parents: Transportation -- what are the parameters? Are lunches and snacks included? There are even Camps with towel service and bathing suit laundering! What kind of customer service do they offer? REFERENCES: “Word of mouth” is by far the greatest factor in choosing a Camp for most people. So speak to your friends who attend the Camps you’re considering, or ask the Camp if you can contact families from your area with like-aged children. In most cases, these parents will give you a better idea of the Camp than the website or marketing materials will. This is a big financial decision for your family, and you need to feel confident that you’re making the right choice. So take your time, do your homework, and ASK LOTS OF QUESTIONS!✲ About the Author: Andy Pritikin is the Owner/Director of Liberty Lake Day Camp in Columbus, NJ, as well as a Board Member and Professional Development Chair of the American Camp Association.  

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   

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        

       

3 Camps to Choose From

Summer Camp at Sports & More! Open House 11am – 2pm

Feb 3 • March 10 • April 21 • May 19 • June 15


SUMMER camps 10 & Under Sports & Tennis Camp  Junior Tennis Camp 

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• ages 2-14 • 11 weeks of camp • before and after care • 3 or 5 day scheduling • pool • inflatable water slide • theme days • field trips • state of the art GAGA court • amazing jumping pillow • rockwall • sibling discounts We feature 3 different camps! • Camp SAM Snack • Camp GLAM & h c n Lu provided! • SAM Playcare re






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1855 Hurffville Road, Sewell, NJ 08080 856.401.8111 February 2013 | 33

Traditional Camp or Specialty Camp —

Which is Right for Your Child? By the American Camp Association, NY & NJ


ach summer, NJ children go to camp for a summer of trying new activities, making new friends and learning life skills such as sportsmanship, confidence and independence. With so many summer program options, parents who are interested in sending their child to summer camp often aren’t sure whether they should send their child to a traditional summer camp or a specialty camp. What’s the difference between traditional summer camps and a specialty camp, and how do parents know which summer camp program their child will be successful at?

Traditional summer camps offers children a varied camp experience with many different camp activities such as swimming, archery, ropes course, arts and crafts, soccer, basketball, boating and drama, among many others. For parents looking to provide their children with a social and developmental experience such as learning life skills, developing independence, learning responsibility and connecting with people, the traditional camp will provide these experiences. Campers at traditional camps also become part of a community and will enjoy traditional summer camp activities such as Olympics, Color War, Bunk Activity Days, Community Service Projects, Carnival and trips off camp.


o, how do you know if you should send your child to a traditional camp or a specialty camp? Your child’s age is one factor parents should consider when choosing. Young children often don’t show a specific interest in just one activity because they’re still figuring out what their interests are. Traditional camp gives them exposure to a whole range of activities and allows children to develop many different skills and talents. Older children and teenagers have often narrowed down their interests and sometimes show a particular interest in a sport or a skill. A specialty camp may be a good option for them to hone these skills. Parents should keep in mind that many traditional camps offer focused programs where campers can specialize in an activity of their choice such as tennis or soccer, while still enjoying the benefits of the traditional summer camp experience. Many traditional camps hire top athletic coaches to teach as specialists so campers receive top instruction in sports and activities. Parents also want to think about their child’s interests. If during the school year, a child likes participating in school plays and also playing for a basketball team, he or she may like a more varied day and may prefer a traditional camp where the camper can participate in many different activities each day. If a child only participates in one activity all of the time and shows little interest in anything else, a specialty camp might be the right fit for that child; however, some parents might feel their child spends too much time on one activity during the school year and that a traditional camp will expose their child to a more diverse range of activities.

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Specialty camps focus on a specific camp activity or related camp activities for a given period of time. There are many different types of specialty camps available for children for just about every interest such as horseback riding, tennis, drama, gymnastics or soccer. If your child has an interest in a specialized activity, there’s bound to be a camp geared toward that interest.

To find the right camp for your child, visit the American Camp Association, New York and New Jersey’s camp database www. and register for a free, customized list of camps that match your needs. You can also call 1-800-777-CAMP to speak with our Camper Placement Specialist for free, one-on-one advice in finding a summer camp. ACA-Accreditation is a parent’s best evidence of a camp’s commitment to health and safety and ensures that children are provided with a diversity of educational and developmentally challenging learning opportunities.✲

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Three Locations! Dozens of Fun Activities!

Lunch, Snack and Extended Care INCLUDED! Crazy Theme Days • Weekly Sports • GaGa Flag Football • Field Trips • Tutor Time Kinnect & Wii Game Rooms • Dodgeball Ceramics & Jewelry Making • Special Guests PK,K&1 Curriculum •Flexible Schedules Games & Activities • Lots of Fun MOUNT LAUREL

3 1/2 years to 8th grade 1 Hovtech Boulevard Mt. Laurel 856.273.2828


4 years to 8th grade 510 Deptford Avenue Westville 856.845.7353

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FEES: Registration $45 ($35 with coupon before June 30) DAILY: $45 • 2nd sibling $40 • Each additional sibling $36


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Experience the Excitement of Sailing!

Kids ages 9-18 and adults alike can enjoy our beginner and advanced programs Sessions run Monday - Friday

Half day classes $250 for 2 weeks, 9am-12pm or 1pm-4pm Full day classes are $250 for one week and class is from 9am-4pm

U.S. Sailing Certified Instructors Sessions run every 2 weeks Call us at: 856.869.9145

Register online at: Collingswood, NJ

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February 2013 | 35

LIBERTY LAKE Liberty Lake is a truly transformative experience, teaching life skills to inspire children and adults to change the world. Campers expand their talents, make friends, and have the greatest summer experience imaginable! Check out the Freedom of Choice Elective Program. 1195 Florence Columbus Road • Bordentown, NJ 08505 609.499.7820

CAMP HUNTINGTON Camp Huntington is a co-ed, residential program for children and young adults with learning and developmental needs; Autism, Mental Retardation, Learning Disabilities, ADD/HD; 6-21 and young adults. Our program is designed to maximize a child’s potential, locate and develop strengths and hidden abilities. We offer a unique program approach of adaptive therapeutic recreation, which combines key elements that encourage progress: structured programming, nurturing care, a positive setting, and academic instruction to meet IEP goals. 1- 855 707 2267

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For a complete list of events, log onto

To submit your event, send an e-mail to Entries are due six weeks prior to the event and are filled on a first-come first-served basis. Space is limited.

ATLANTIC COUNTY Saturdays in February, 10am – 4pm Marine Mammal Stranding Center Free Museum & Tours Marine Mammal and Stranding Center, 3625 Brigantine Blvd., Brigantine (609) 266-0538

BURLINGTON COUNTY Wednesday, February 6, 2013 Animal Signs—10 am Admission: Free Smithville Park Parking lot A off Meade Lane Eastampton (609) 265-5858 Join Ranger Kelly in search of evidence of our parks’ wildlife in winter. Participants will look for nests, dens, tracks and browsed plants to figure out what species live here. Please dress warm, wear boots and be prepared to quietly explore the forest. Recommended for adults. Registration required. Inclement weather cancels.

Saturday, February 23, 2013 Jewelry Making Workshop with Frandy Jean 10 am-2 pm Admission:$20 Location: Smithville Mansion Annex Gallery Smithville Mansion 803 Smithville Rd. Eastampton (609) 265-5287 Acclaimed Haitian artist Frandy Jean will conduct this handson workshop on how to make handmade Haitian jewelry. By the

end of the session, participants will have made and will take home a lovely bracelet.

CAMDEN COUNTY Saturday, February 2– 3 to 5:15 pm Kids’ Connection Super Saturday Episcopal Church of St John in the Wilderness 77 Hilliards Road , Gibbsboro Explore the story of the Prodigal Son with crafts, games, drama and more. Age 4 through 6th grade. Adults are welcome to stay. Call Cathy (856) 728-5393 or Chris (609) 313-0585. KidsConnectionSuperSaturday Saturday and Sunday, February 2 - 3 from 10 am – 4 pm Meet Franklin the Turtle at Adventure Aquarium Everyone’s favorite fun-loving and friendly Nick Jr. star, Franklin the Turtle, will be live and in-person. Franklin, which originates from the popular children’s books written by Paulette Bourgeois, stars an irrepressible turtle who, together with his forest friends, works his way through everyday dilemmas. Franklin learns how he fits into the world and how the world fits him. Like most children, Franklin learns by making mistakes. When he fibs, gets lost or acts bossy, he usually finds solutions himself, learning lessons the Franklin way. Come start a face-to-face friendship with Franklin. Here’s your chance to meet the shelled star himself, pose for pics and experience all there is to see and do during, “Turtles: Journey of Survival” at Adventure Aquarium.

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CAPE MAY COUNTY Saturdays, February 2, 9, 16, & 23, 12pm Aquarium Feeding/Kids-n-Crafts/ Creature Feature Wetlands Institute, 1075 Stone Harbor Blvd., Stone Harbor $8.00/adults, $6.00/ages 3-12, (609) 368-1211 Greater Ocean City Theatre Company Presents “I Love New York: A Cabaret of Broadway Love Songs.” Saturday, February 16, 2013—7 pm Dessert Reception 8 pm Show at the Hughes Performing Arts Center at the Ocean City High School, 6th & Atlantic Avenues. Tickets purchased before 4:30 pm on Thursday, February 14th, at $18.00 per person. Tickets prices will go to $20.00 thereafter. Tickets can be purchased by calling (609) 525-9300 or visiting boxoffice

things 2 do

February Calendar

class on February 18 and February 25. A class will be held on Wednesday, February 27, at 10:30 a.m. Although the class is free, donations will be accepted for the instructor. A Wednesday evening class is also held at 6:30 p.m., except on February 27 which will be held at 10:30 a.m. Soft and gentle poses are led by yoga teacher, Ceci Brandt, of Vineland. Wear comfortable clothing. Bring a yoga mat if you have one. Chairs will be provided. Cumberland County Library is located at 800 E. Commerce St., Bridgeton. Call (856) 453-2210. Yoga is practiced in the meeting room on the lower level of the library. Museum of American Glass Wheaton Arts Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays in February Free Admission 10am – 5pm Museum of American Glass and Museum Stores, Wheaton Arts and Cultural Center, 1501 Glasstown Road, Millville 1-800-998-4552


CUMBERLAND COUNTY Yoga in February at the Cumberland County Library Start your Monday morning at the Cumberland County Library by practicing yoga at 10:30 a.m. Yoga classes for all ages continue at the Cumberland County Library in February. No

Barnes and Noble Weekly Storytime 10 – 11 am Join us each week, on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, for great stories that are sure to become favorites! Deptford - The Court at Deptford II, 1553 Almonesson Road, Deptford (856) 232-3123 Broadway Theatre of Pitman 43 S. Broadway, Pitman (856) 384-8381 Bring the family and catch a show

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resource guide

CLASSES Enrichment Classes & Workshops for Home School Families Constellation Academy offers Christ-centered resources and teaching at affordable rates. Services include academic and elective subject tutoring and/or class instruction, workshops, teacher mentoring, student contests, field trips and fellowship opportunities! Visit for more info or call (856) 205-9334.

GIFT IDEAS GREAT PERSONALIZED GIFTS FOR ALL AGES At JUST FOR LITTLE PEOPLE (and others, too!) we specialize in new baby gifts both hand-painted and/or embroidered. Beautifully wrapped and available for pick-up at our new Gibbsboro location or we can ship it for you. Call (856) 627-8901 or check out

Home Owners Free Offer Accurate pricing is the first and most important step towards successfully marketing your home. To receive your Free Comparative Market Analysis from The Ron Bruce Team at Prudential Fox and Roach. Call 609-670-1794. There is no obligation,The team will promptly provide you with a comprehensive report on the value of your home. Begin your free, no-obligation market value analysis today!

NOW HIRING! Become An Advertising Account Executive with South Jersey MOM • Flexible hours - 20 hours per week minimum • Work from home - must have home office setup Interested applicants should send cover letter and resume to *Experience preferred, but not required. Full training provided.

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February 2013 | 39

When you bank with LifebankUSA®, tissue banking is FREE.* • Only LifebankUSA can bank placenta blood cells, cord blood cells and tissue • This unique combination yields the greatest number of life-saving cells • More cells stored means greater protection and the most peace of mind

Saving more cells. Storing more hope. Stem cells from placental and cord blood are indicated to rebuild blood. *Tissue banking includes tissue from the placenta. Storage fees apply after the first year.

LifebankUSA is a registered trademark of Celgene Corporation. © 2012 Celgene Cellular Therapeutics


February 2013 - South Jersey MOM Magazine  

The February 2013 issue of South Jersey MOM Magazine

February 2013 - South Jersey MOM Magazine  

The February 2013 issue of South Jersey MOM Magazine