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GIVING THANKS Remember... charity and appreciation start at home

BRING “GOOD TIDINGS” TO YOURSELF THIS SEASON holiday tips for pregnant women


RAISING A WELL-BEHAVED CHILD teaching little ones to be responsible and reasonable


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publisher’s note

November 2009

Table of Contents mom 2 mom 8 Adoption Options 10 Raising a Well-Behaved Child 11 Giving Thanks

moms R women 2 12 What are Free Radicals and Why Should I Care 14 Holiday Tips for Pregnant Women 16 Children Divorce and the Holidays

know 2 grow 23 End the Frustration and Wipe Out Whining 25 How to Curb Complaints About School 26 Tips for Helping Your Kid with Math

features 18 2009 Holiday Gift Guide 29 To Tip or Not to Tip: That is the Question

also in this issue 3 5 6 27 30 32 33 34

publisher’s note nana’s 2 sense life sentences green mama book review things 2 do thinking out loud resource guide

Dear Readers, y favorite part of the year has arrived. I can’t actually say it’s my favorite…I really enjoy all seasons, but what I love best is the changing of the seasons. I love switching wardrobes, packing away last season’s items and pulling out the clothes I had put away. It’s always exciting to pull out a sweater I forgot I had. I also like the changing of activities. With each season comes something new to do with the family. Fall activities are so much fun for the kids. Kayden is loving the hayrides and pumpkins. What makes this time of year so special though is that we finally take a step back and give thanks. We are a little nicer to people, we are more giving and we are quicker to help others. Now I do my best to be that way every day – we all do, right? – but it seems that people try harder during the fall and winter seasons. It’s very important to me that I teach my children to be gracious and appreciative for all they have been blessed with. It seems easy enough to teach…say please, say thank you, etc. But how do I make a lasting impression that becomes a part of their character and stays with them for life? That’s a pretty big responsibility for any parent.


Of course, the most important thing we can do is lead by example. Even though it may not seem like it, our children are watching the things we do. They hear how we talk to other people…and then, like little tape recorders, they repeat those things, whether they are good or bad! It always sounds worse coming out of Kayden’s mouth when he says, “Don’t tell me no!” than it does when it’s coming out of mine. But it sounds so much sweeter when he says “please” or “thank you” to a stranger than it does when I say it too. Now that the kids are getting older, I’m brainstorming ideas for a new tradition my family can engage in each year to give thanks for all we have. I think this year we will start by making a list of all the things we are grateful for. How fun it will be to see how that list changes over the years. Feel free to share your family traditions for giving thanks. You can write me at

Your Friend and Fellow MOM,

November 2009 | 3

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MOM 2009

Publisher/Editor: Adrienne Richardson Editorial Associate: Jeanette Giza Advertising Inquiries: Orin Jespersen • 856.690.5565 Dianne Holland • 856.278.6119 General Advertising Info: Copy Editor: Gaily Von Schlichting Production Manager: Lisa Celfo Communications Manager: Esther Donnelly Photographer: Lisa Ward Photography Contributing Writers: Linda Arceo, Blythe Lipman, Fran LoBiondo, Renee Taylor Negin, Gwen Recinto, Kathryn Ross, Judy M. Schneider, Sheila Taney, Kate Varevice Submit Calendar Listing: Letters to the Editor: For Any Other General Information: South Jersey MOM is published monthly and distributed throughout the region. The publication is available free of charge at select locations. Subscriptions $24.99 per year. TM

Very Special


ver notice how certain people have a way of making you feel good, every time you see them? Ever give a kind word or a compliment and feel the warmth of the smile you put on that person’s face? A long overdue visit to my hairdresser of ten years reminded me how important every relationship in our circle of life really is; the ladies I see every morning in the Wawa, the older gent who makes my day a little brighter every time I hear that familiar “Mornin’ Kid” through the rain, from the other side of the gas pumps and yes, my confidant, my hairdresser. As I sit there and complain, he listens and then gently offers his wisdom. These are the folks outside our family but very much a part of our lives, as we are a part of theirs. Whether it’s that extra minute we take to ask, “How are you?” while we are paying for our coffee, or the hour spent sharing a happy or sad time with our hairdresser, we share pieces of our lives with those around us, in sickness and in health, for better or for worse. Yup, these are the folks who see us on our bad days, as well as our good ones; very special people, captive though they are. I always think of my grandchildren during these times of revelation. Do my grandchildren sense the frustration and stress left over from my not-so-pleasant week at work, or do they feel the joy they bring me when I am in their presence? I know that, when we are with our families, the people most important to us,


nana’s 2 sense

South Jersey

we often converse, not recognizing that the children are in the room. They may not be part of the conversation, but be assured they are listening and watching, taking in every word, every action, every nuance, the tone in your voice and the look on your face. We take with us into our adult lives every seemingly small experience of every day. What will my grandchildren remember? What a lovely legacy to always have a kind word, always treat every person with respect, dignity and worth, especially those closest to us. Each daily encounter offers the opportunity to either brighten or darken someone’s day. What if every time I cross the path of another, I choose, with a smile or a kind remark, to make their day special? This month, say “thank you” to those very special people in your circle of life. —Nana Jean Nana Jean is a South Jersey grandmother with two daughters and six grandchildren. Enjoy her stories about her 37+ years as a mom and 19 years as a grandmother as she shares her experiences and lessons learned with lots of laughs and tears along the way.

All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part is not permitted without the authorization of the publisher. South Jersey MOM P.O. Box 2413 Vineland, NJ 08362-2413 856.692.MOMS Fax: 856.405.6794


On the COVER

“Cutest Kid in Town” winners: Luke is 15 months old and lives in Laurel Springs. He has a big sister named Ava who he totally looks up to. He loves playing in the backyard with Ava, Dad and Mom and likes to throw the football and yell touchdown. He hits a baseball off the tee and is a very happy little guy who loves being outside and running around. He can be quite the clown and enjoys making people laugh. Most of all he loves to give kisses, probably his favorite thing to do! Photo by Lisa Ward Photography.

November 2009 | 5

life sentences

Freudian at 50

had a strange dream recently and I don’t know what it means. I was organizing the apartment I was sharing with some friends, looking forward to starting my graduate classes in a field I had always wanted to study. I can’t remember what field that was, but I felt it was the right course of study for me. I was excited. I was in New York City and my son was at graduate school there also, just across town. I was aware that I would not see much of him – what 22-yearold wants his mother hanging around? But I thought it was great to have him so close by. During breaks, we could even share the ride back home to Vineland. Here is where it gets weird. I still had my old life – a husband and two children at home and I had, apparently, left them to fend for themselves for two years while I went off to be a grad student. My husband was fine with it (that’s when I knew I was dreaming). My 10-year-old daughter, who insisted all summer that she wanted to stay home alone, was bewildered at my absence and furious at me for leaving her in the lurch. My autistic son, a silent but needy companion, was bereft and distraught. In


my dream, I had not prepared them at all; I’d just packed a bag and taken a train. They were having a horrible time coping. In the dream, I remember thinking, “It’s not like I’m dead; I’m trying to improve myself. Two years of study and I’ll come back and get a great job. What’s their problem? ” Then I looked at things from their point of view, and my heart was crushed with guilt. I was never so delighted to wake up to my pokey little life in exurbia. I have spent some time since wondering what that dream meant for me. Sigmund Freud, the father of psychoanalysis, wrote that dreams were “the royal road to the unconscious,” representing a desire that we repress because it is unacceptable. But Johnny Depp did not even appear in my dream, so that was a dumb theory. Carl Jung, Freud’s follower, saw dreams as “the unconscious communicating with the conscious part of ourselves in order to bring something to our notice and restore our balance.” That’s it! Balance. So far, turning 50 has not exactly been a laugh riot. Everything I’ve seen and heard about, but denied would happen, has hap-

pened. Sleeplessness? Check. Weight gain? Yikes! Cantankerousness? I’m not cranky, By Fran but everyone around LoBiondo me is. And everything they say to me is like a fork in my gut. I need to restore my equilibrium. Perhaps walking out of my life like a character in an Anne Tyler novel will not solve my imbalance problems. But how about disappearing to a quiet place, just for a couple of weeks. Would that be so wrong? Fran LoBiondo of Vineland has children in grade school, high school and college. A Purdue University graduate with a degree in Journalism, she has written about parenting, food and fun for 25 yrs.


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mom 2 mom

Adoption Options

By Kate Varevice

he journey to adoption’s door varies from family to family. Perhaps infertility was the road they traveled or perhaps a family with children, be they biological or adopted, is ready to grow and adoption is simply what “feels right.� Whatever the journey, there are some important points to keep in mind. Generally speaking, there are three main types of adoption of newborns. Older children are generally adopted through state agencies and international adoption. The avenue a family pursues should depend mainly on the goal(s) of the adoptive parents, suggests adoption attorney and adoptive mother Deborah Spivack, Esq. “A family’s goal will [often] determine which type of adoption they should pursue. When it comes to adoption, one size does not fit all.� Adoptive parents must take the time to evaluate whether or not they want to have control over the process or whether they want to put their faith and trust in third parties, such as agencies, and in their belief that they will become parents through adoption. Spivack points out that the conclusions drawn after this evaluation help prospective


8 | November 2009

adoptive parents decide whether or not they the adoptive parents have a great deal of want to pursue a private (or independent) control over the adoption process. adoption, a private agency adoption or an A private agency adoption is one in identified adoption, which is a hybrid of the which both the birth parents and the adoptive parents come to the agency for servictwo. A private or independent adoption es. The birth parents often receive optional occurs when adoptive parents and birth par- counseling to help them determine whether ents come together without utilizing an adoption is right for their family. Similarly, agency. In these cases, attorneys for each adoptive parents receive education from the party assist in fulfilling their clients’ wish- agency and prepare a “family profileâ€? for es. However, the relationship built between potential birth parents to view. If the birth the parties is privately established and parents wish to pursue adoption, the agency developed with no agency matching the can present them with profiles of prospectwo. It should be noted that an agency is tive adoptive parents and allow them to generally involved in providing social service aspects of #  "  # # the case, such as the initial approval         ,  ( % %'  & +!       report (often called & !"  $"  % & # %  !"" the home study "    "! process) and any & "  "  & " "    " progress reports

" " " " required by state &   "  ! &  !""   "  "! law after place&  "   " "! & ""     ment (often called          the post-placement   # "-* " $",$) %"" ' 

 evaluations.) In a ,,,# "-* " $",$)  private adoption,

select the adoptive parents they wish to parent their child. The agency helps with the match and acts as a liaison between the parties for many aspects of the relationship before and, in some cases, after the adoption. And there is a hybrid version, which combines aspects of the first two adoption processes. State agencies usually place older children for adoption only after they become legally available for adoption. Many of these children reside in foster homes first. Children of all ages can also be adopted through international adoption. These days, most adoptions have some degree of openness to them. Open adoption means there is “open communication between birth parents and adoptive parents,” says Maxine G. Chalker, MSW/LSW, founder and director of Adoptions from the Heart. ( Years of research and social work studies lead professionals to believe that all three parties involved do much better in the long run when information can be exchanged. The three parties, or the Triad, are the adoptive parents, the birth parent(s) and the child. Studies show that secrecy about a child’s adoption may prove to be detrimental to the child’s development. Adoptive parents are counseled throughout the adoption process and advised of the best ways to share “age appropriate” information with their child. Maintaining a degree of openness also helps the birth families heal after going through an adoption. If the Triad can agree to exchange photographs and letters over the years through an agency, this can be incredibly cathartic to a parent(s) who may ultimately feel a great sense of loss, despite having made the decision that was truly best for all involved. Both the adoptive parents and the birth family will undoubtedly encounter the emotional strain and stress that occurs during the adoption process. Adoption counselor and adoptive mother, Sasha Martone, MSW, says, “While the paperwork portion of the process is one that is active and makes you feel productive, the emotional component can make adoptive parents feel powerless.” Many times, adoptive parents are mentally ready to become parents, but are forced to remain on other people’s timetables, whether they are waiting to be matched up with a birth mother, waiting for the baby to be born, or waiting to board the plane to go meet their child in another country. One of the most important pieces of advice Martone offers is to be patient. So many times, the catch phrase in adoptive family circles is ‘Hurry up and wait.’ “If people can go into the process with that mind frame, it’s a little easier,” says Martone. In addition to patience, Martone stresses the importance of a solid network and support system. These are an absolute must for adoptive parents and birth families alike. The Infertility and Adoption Counseling Center ( is one place where all involved can go to seek such support, be it through one-on-one counseling, group counseling or through various workshops offered to prospective parents and birth families. The Center’s website also contains a wealth of information and resources for anyone considering adoption. As the journey of adoption ends for adoptive parents, the greatest journey begins – the journey of parenthood.

November 2009 | 9


hildren do not come with instructions. Every parent has heard this before. It’s often difficult to know how to parent “right,” to raise children to be responsible, reasonable little people and—with some strategic parenting and a bit of luck— responsible and reasonable adults. The tools parents use to encourage good behavior are tools their children can carry with them throughout their lives. First of all, it’s important to have rules. Let children help establish the rules and determine the consequences for not following them. This will help ensure the child understands the rules and understands that behaviors have consequences. Erica Waldron Hawk, of Cape May Court House, says, “We set expectations for our girls – what’s acceptable and what’s not. Most of the time it works, even with our littlest having ADD.” Alice Meeks of Shiloh agrees. “We teach our boys that behavior is about choices. If you make a poor choice, a consequence will follow.” Just remember that the punishment should fit the crime. A consequence should be a direct result of the child’s action. If a toddler throws a toy, he should lose that toy for a set time. If a teenager is rude, she should be

10 | November 2009

Raising a

Well-Behaved By Renee Taylor Negin required to apologize for her rudeness. Children closely monitor parents’ actions, even when the parents do not realize they are being watched. Children learn how to act by watching their parents and mimicking what they do. Modeling good behavior for children not only shows them how to act in particular situations, but also makes enforcing the rules easier. A parent can point out a time when they have been in a similar situation and how they acted or reacted as a means of reinforcing the rules. Second, let kids be kids. Allow children to blow off steam on a regular basis. Children are energetic and curious, and yet they are expected to hold in that energy for so much of their day. Make


sure to set aside time and space for children to explore, to expend their energy and to have fun. Playtime is an important part of a child’s development. Allowing a child to run and shout at the park can help alleviate their need to do so in the library or the grocery store. Let children know that there is a time and a place for certain actions and then give them that time and place to do so. Third, accentuate the positive. Children thrive with praise. When a child makes a good choice or follows a particular rule, giving him a “thumbs up” will let him know that his good behavior is worthy of being noticed. Positive attention is a powerful reward. One reason children misbehave is because of the attention they receive from it. If they are getting attention for doing the right thing, they will feel less need to get it from acting out. Fourth, create a reward system. Many consequences for negative behavior involve loss of privileges or possessions, but often parents fail to issue rewards when rules are followed. Rewards are different from bribes because rewards are earned. Let the child know that play dates, activities and even toys or games are privileges that are earned when good behavior warrants them. Make sure to point out the connection between behaving in a positive way and getting to enjoy the rewards. The child will associate behaving appropriately with getting or doing something enjoyable and will be more likely to continue the good behavior. While no parenting technique is foolproof, being consistent and fair, setting a good example and focusing on the positive are all ways to encourage children’s best behavior. Following the rules helps children understand many important life lessons— play fair with others, respect people, places and things and accept responsibility for one’s actions. These are lessons everyone should learn, and teaching them to children is a parent’s greatest gift.

Giving Thanks

By Blythe Lipman

Thanks: An expression of appreciation or gratitude. Charity: A benevolent good will or love toward humanity. Appreciation: An expression of gratitude and admiration. (Merriam-Webster dictionary)


he holidays will soon be here. Christmas decorations are already in all the stores. Everywhere you look there are things, things and more things to buy. You want your children to be happy and to have the newest and the best. And you want to tell your friends about it! But wait…aren’t holidays supposed to be about family? Holidays are about the wonderful get-togethers, about oohing and ahhing over the new baby and the grown-up toddler. The holidays are about the comforting smell of a pot of soup simmering on the stove, turkey, stuffing, brownies and other aromas that remind us of our childhood. Enjoying each other, reminiscing, telling stories, laughing, sometimes crying, while sharing your love and creating wonderful new memories with our children and families…giving thanks that we have the opportunity to be together to create another generation filled with hope, love, gratitude and appreciation. Our world is so fast paced, filled with so many things to buy, it’s sometimes easy to forget what is really important. If we all try and remember that charity and appreciation start at home, our world will be a brighter place. The following suggestions will not only make your heart smile, but warm the hearts of whomever you touch.

• Smile when you pick up your baby…it’s contagious. • Get down to your toddler’s eye level when teaching him something new. • Smile when you answer the phone; the caller will hear it in your voice. • When Grandma wants to help you with the baby, welcome her with open arms. And do not forget to say, “thank you, I really appreciate you.” • When Grandpa wants to take little Aaron to the park, welcome him with open arms. And do not forget to say, “thank you, I really appreciate you.” • If you have a million things to do and cannot get your toddler to nap, ask him to help you. Then tell him “thank you” and “I love you.” • When your baby will not stop crying, ask daddy to help. Then tell him he’s a great Dad! • Talk to your older toddler about children who are less fortunate. Ask him to pick out a toy to donate.

• Do not just put your baby’s outgrown clothes in a bag in the garage and forget about them; donate them to another family member with a baby or to a charity. • Put family pictures in your children’s rooms. This is a very comforting and loving way to show them you will always be there. • Tape a picture of the family on your baby’s crib or wall where he or she can see it. • When your toddler is sitting at the table coloring, color with him. Your time is more valuable than any toy you could buy. • When you are getting the house ready for the holidays, put on some music, place your baby in a front-pack and dance away. Makes tidying more fun! • Ask your toddler to draw a special thank you picture for his teacher or caregiver and include a personal note of appreciation from all of you. There is no better gift! • Write a personal note of appreciation to your pediatrician and staff for making your life a little less scary! • Write a personal note of thanks to the mailman, hairdresser, newspaper delivery person, etc, for making your life much easier. • When you are at the grocery store, pick up some extra food to donate. The food banks always run low this time of year. • Call your parents and in-laws and tell them they are the best parents and grandparents in the world! • When your husband comes home from work, tell him what a great husband and father he is and how much you appreciate him. • And do not forget to appreciate and honor yourself. Appreciation and thanks would not happen without you. At the end of each day, think of three things you are thankful for and feel the gratitude. Life can be grand and it does not have to cost a penny! Blythe Lipman is the president of Baby Instructions. She is passionate about babies, toddlers and their parents. After working in the field for over twenty-five years, she wrote her second award-winning book, MORE…HELP! MY BABY CAME WITHOUT INSTRUCTIONS. Her book is available at, Borders books,, Barnes and Noble. She is available for in-home, video and telephone consultations. Contact Blythe at

November 2009 | 11

moms R women 2

ree radicals are atoms, or groups of atoms, with an unpaired number of electrons. One single free radical can destroy an enzyme, a protein molecule, a strand of DNA or an entire cell. Even worse, it can unleash, in less than a second, a rapid chain reaction that produces a million or more killer free radicals. These free radicals then react with important cellular components, such as DNA, or the cell membrane, attacking healthy cells and causing significant damage. Cells may function poorly or die if this occurs. Free radicals have been linked to the onset of cancer, heart disease, stroke, arthritis, allergies and can significantly contribute to the aging process.


There is no escaping our exposure to free radicals – they surround us. Here’s where they hide: The Environment: Things like air pollution, cigarette smoke, automobile exhaust, toxic waste, pesticides, herbicides, ultraviolet light, background radiation, drugs and even some foods contribute to free radical production in our bodies. Internally: Our bodies constantly produce free radicals as a byproduct of normal metabolism. Stress factors: Trauma, medications, disease, infection and stress all accelerate free radical production. Domino Effect: When a free radical steals an electron to balance itself, it causes a chain reaction. The unpaired electron then creates a new free radical in the molecule. The new free radical will seek to balance itself by stealing an electron from another healthy molecule, and so on. Just one free radical is capable of destroying an entire cell or a strand of DNA. It’s important to note that not all free radicals are harmful. They may also serve useful purposes in the human body and its ability to fight infection and destroy bacteria.

12 | November 2009

Our bodies’ natural defense systems help control the overproduction of free radicals. Essential enzymes and minerals serve as the front line defense. The second line of defense against free radicals and the damage they cause are antioxidants. Once free radicals are neutralized by antioxidants, they become harmless. Antioxidants are molecules which can safely interact with free radicals and terminate the chain reaction before vital molecules are damaged. Principal antioxidants are vitamin E, beta-carotene (or cartenoids, commonly known as the red, yellow and orange pigments found in plant foods) and vitamin C. Selenium, a trace metal that is required for proper function of one of the body’s antioxidant enzyme systems, is sometimes included in this category. Garlic, dark chocolate and red wine are also recommended in the fight against free radicals, as they also contain antioxidant benefits. The body cannot manufacture these micronutrients so they must be supplied in the diet. Evidence suggests that consuming foods rich in antioxidants can have a major impact on disease prevention. So… eat foods high in antioxidants! The American Heart Association, the American Cancer Society and USDA dietary guidelines all suggest at least five servings of fruits and vegetables daily. Unfortunately, most of our dietary patterns do not place emphasis on vegetables and fruits. To make up for this deficiency in our diets, the Journal of the American Medical Association recommends that all adults, no matter their age or health status, should take a daily multivitamin. So, in the end, as mother warrior (out there battling everything from germs to the neighborhood bully), antioxidants, good nutrition, and a daily vitamin are the soldiers you need by your side in the war against free radicals.

By Linda Arceo

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he holidays are here – and, for most women and their families, that means a packed schedule and an extra long to-do list. This year, especially if you are pregnant, be sure not to take on too much. “Know your limits. In this fast-paced culture we live in, don’t try to break any ‘personal bests’ this holiday season,” says Laura Bottalico Nikolidakis, a mom from Runnemede. Nikolidakis was pregnant with her first child through the 2006 holiday season and is expecting her second child in February 2010.


Nikolidakis advises pregnant women to watch their sweets and be sure to keep a balanced diet. Although you may be tempted to gorge on extra gravy on your mashed potatoes and an extra piece of pumpkin pie … and a large piece of cheesecake... don’t do it. “If you’re already suffering from a wounded body image – from the 25 to 35 pounds of baby that you’re carrying – don’t let that be an excuse to forgo a healthy diet. Too much sugar will just make you feel worse and, ultimately, drain you of your energy. Try to stick to your normal healthy diet as much as you can. You’ll feel better in the long run.” Kimberly O’Connor Sparks, a mom from Medford, offers advice based on her experience. “Drink plenty of water. Around the holidays, it gets crazy and you’ll forget to drink and stay hydrated.” 14 | November 2009

Bring “Good Tidings”to Yourself This Holiday Season Holiday tips for pregnant women By Gwen Recinto To keep your strength and spirits up, Nikolidakis recommends exercise. If you are still in the early stages of your pregnancy, put yourself on an exercise regimen that you can stick with, for example, walking. “If you are closer to your due date, try to do as much as you can manage safely, even if that means a 15-minute walk three times a week,” says Nikolidakis. “The holidays can be a stressful time. Everything you feel, your baby feels. Take care of yourself.” Tackle That To-Do List – Stress Free! “Order all your holiday gifts online,” says Sparks. “I started doing it when I was pregnant and now I still do it.” Also, consider giving gift cards as presents. When you give someone a gift card, you can avoid gift wrapping, carrying heavy packages and cleaning up a mess of paper and ribbons. Your local pharmacy or grocery store likely has a variety to choose from – talk about one-stop shopping! Another way to save time and energy is to make a list of errands and group the list according to what you need at each stop. If you can, ask your husband or a friend to go shopping for you. If you are doing the shopping yourself, make sure you take your time and try to shop during “off” hours when the stores and parking lots are less crowded. Finally, consider ways to cut down your work. Do your cookies really need to be made from scratch? Do you really need to send – and hand-write – holiday cards? Instead, make ONE recipe of cookies or buy them from your favorite bakery, then go online and send an e-card. You can find a lot of options for free e-cards or you can simply write a holiday email and include a picture of you and your family. Pamper Yourself Instead of hosting an extravagant dinner or attending every holiday party, take care of yourself and your baby. This may mean leaving the party a little early or bringing a bottle of wine instead of cooking your “famous” side dish. If you can, schedule a prenatal massage. Think of it as a present to yourself – “To: Me; From: Me.” Not only will you get a chance to relax and get pampered, you will be doing something to benefit you and your baby. “Massage increases blood circulation, which provides more oxygen to both the mom and baby,” says Mandy Urena, a massage therapist and owner of The English Touch in Marlton. “Massage can help stabilize hormone levels and soothe and relax the nervous system. Most times, the mommy-to-be will go to sleep more easily and more deeply.” Enjoy This Holiday Season Nikolidakis sums it up eloquently: “Really, the main point of all this is to try to get through everything you have to do comfortably. Go at a pace you can handle and remember to forgive yourself if you fall off course. You’ll be back in action before you know it … or, you could just get your hair and nails done and buy a new outfit – that would probably work too!”

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Children, Divorce and the Holidays How to make the most of a stressful time he holiday season conjures up many images for all of us. The most universal of these images is one that includes happy, excited children. However, for children from divorced or separated families, the holidays can be a nightmare. Often the holiday time marks a period of turmoil and chaos, as the estranged parents are forced to negotiate additional child-centered issues. Depending on the degree of hostility between the parents, children of divorce approach the holidays with feelings ranging from mild ambivalence to absolute dread. First of all, regardless of financial or marital status, we all experience stress around the holidays. We spend too much, eat too much, party too much and always seem to have too little money, too little sleep and too little time. It’s important to recognize that most people feel inadequate around the holidays. Second, regardless of how good the relationship is between the divorced or separated parents, children and their parents always experience some sadness around the holidays. After all, the holidays are a time for reminiscing and reassessing our lives. The divorced or separated family is always aware of the pain it has suffered and the holidays magnify this pain. Reminiscing is part of the holiday tradition, as we remember holidays gone by with stories or by browsing through the family album. For the divorced or separated family, this experience is bittersweet, as they reassess how it “used to be.” Third, we have unrealistic expectations. The result of this is the “post holiday blues” many of us experience in January. We expect more from ourselves and others than is possible, so we feel let down and disappointed.


Dealing With Issues of Time Each holiday exists for a limited number of hours. Because parents are divorced or 16 | November 2009

Provided by Holly Abery-Wetstone & Donna F. Ferber, M.A., C.A.C. separated does not mean the amount of holiday time available doubles. In reality, it means each parent now has only half the time with the child that they had before. Recognizing that reality is primary in negotiating visitation time. The bad news for the children is that they are forced to divide their time between two families. The good news is they experience two celebrations. From the child’s point of view, this may sound like a lot of fun and it can be, provided the parents set realistic expectations and don’t try to outdo each other or “buy” the child. Many non-custodial parents feel they have to make up for their absence by indulging the child’s every whim. This is unhealthy parenting. If possible, discuss with your ex-spouse your child’s gift list and divide the list, rather than duplicate it. Competing for your child’s love and loyalty only confuses the child. The best gift you can give your children this holiday season is permission to love both parents. Some families avoid splitting the holidays, agreeing that the children will spend Christmas Eve with one parent and Christmas day with the other. Many divorce decrees provide that parents alternate major holidays yearly. This gives both parents the opportunity to celebrate with the children and avoids rushing the children to two holiday dinners. Remember, holidays are about families and good feelings, not the day the calendar dictates. Older children are not immune to this stress. Adult children who are out on their own may find it difficult to choose where to go and when. For younger children, the decision of where to go should be decided by the parents. Having to choose to spend time with one parent over the other is a tremendous burden for the child, which may result in the child feeling guilty. It also gives the child more power than is appropriate. Your child does not decide whether he/she

wants to go to school, but he/she may decide what to wear. Age-appropriate responsibilities enhance children’s selfesteem and confidence. Frequently, divorced families fall into the trap of giving the children more power than is appropriate. To avoid this, make sure you have a support system you can

turn to for advice and encouragement. One of the most difficult aspects of single parenting is not having another adult in the house to offer support and validation. Divorcing parents are advised to determine where the children will celebrate, in writing, with the assistance of their divorce lawyers. This will prevent parental arguments and involvement of the children. The scheduling of holiday celebrations can be done creatively to fit each couple’s unique situation. Parents can alternate Thanksgiving and Christmas, or Christmas Day and Christmas Eve, or allow the parent not having Christmas to spend the week between Christmas and New Years with the children. It’s important to put the agreement in writing to avoid misunderstandings and reneging on the part of either party. Holidays are a mixed blessing. If we set realistic expectations, focus on the needs of the children, develop a good support system and take care of ourselves both emotionally and physically, this time of year can be joyful and fulfilling regardless of our individual family structure.

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Clothing Little Lady Mary Janes These adorable hand-painted shoes, made with non-toxic paint, can be worn outside, even on rainy days. Children's sizes 1 through 10. $35,

Posh Tots Tutu Precious poofy tutus come in numerous color combinations and are handcrafted with premium tulle. The perfect gift for a special occasion, dance class, holidays or special photographs. Prices vary,

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Silly Shirt Shop Children can design their very own personalized character shirt to look just like them! Your little one chooses their gender, hair cut/color, eye color, eyebrows, the right outfit to suit their character – and even the perfect accessories. It's a great way for your kids to show off their unique personality. $14 and up,

A Chanukah Present for: Me!

The Christmas Magic Far, far North, where the nights are longest and the stars shine brightest, Santa begins to prepare for his big night of giving. This heartwarming story has luminous illustrations and is a holiday delight. Ages 4-8, $16.99


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Origami on the Go! Fold away for hours with 40 fresh projects especially designed for the young traveler. Keeps minds and fingers occupied when you travel this holiday season. 100 sheets of colorful paper included. $14.95

Generation T: Beyond Fashion 120 new ideas to reclaim, resuscitate and refashion the humble t-shirt. Full instructions for each creation; ideas include: scarves, skirts, belts, pillows, pot holders, grocery totes, burp cloths, tutus, quilts, toys, beach caddies, picnic blankets & much more! $15.95

The Sound of Kwanzaa Lively verse and colorful illustrations guide you through the seven principles of this festive holiday. Come close, gather round and discover what Kwanzaa is all about! Ages 4-8. $16.99

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Video Games

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In the Discovery Kids game series, players will raise, pamper and train their favorite animals: parrots, dolphins, ponies, puppies or kittens. $19.99,

PANGYA: Fantasy Golf (PlayStation PSP), Rated E10+ Players perfect their swing on the nine fantasy fairways of Pangya Island. Combining golf gameplay, endless customization options and a slew of sassy female characters, Pangya: Fantasy Golf boasts an original storyline and beautiful environments. $29.99, where video games are sold

Bass Pro Shops: The Strike (Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii, PC), Rated E The Strike literally puts the fishing rod in players’ hands as they head out to their favorite hot spots. By combining advanced gameplay with an innovative, motion-sensing fishing pole controller, The Strike is quite the catch for gamers and outdoor enthusiasts alike. $79.99, Bass Pro Shops and where video games are sold November 2009 | 19

Minnie’s Purse, Age 2+


Girls will be ready for anything with the stylish Minnie purse. The purse comes with play lipstick, faux mirror, pretend car keys with sound and even a pretend flip action cell phone with noise to keep every girl up to date. $19.50, Disney Store and

Bubble Scooter The easy to ride, three-wheeled Bubble Scooter is safe, stable and fun with kid-controlled bubble action. $39.99, Kmart

Junior Skate Package The junior Skate Combo from Cars or Hot Wheels comes with adjustable skates, knee pads and elbow pads. $19.99, Kmart, Toys R Us

Pink Paws Animal Building Sets Roy Toy Log Building Sets Old-fashioned, hand-cut wood construction sets with classic log building designs. Logs have a realistic quality and feel and fit tightly to create more stable structures than typical log building sets. They are made of smooth-sanded pine from responsibly managed forests. Food-grade dyes provide color for the red gables and green roof planks. $9.99-$59, Whole Food Markets

Pink Paws are the soft, cuddly stuffed animal friends you will cherish forever. Children will enjoy building their new best friends with their own two hands. Each starter kit contains plush buddy, stuffing, stuffing tool, a heart, certificate and a full outfit all packed in an attractive gift box. Adult supervision required. $29.95-$34.95, and other online stores

Kiddimoto Balance Bikes These bikes don’t have pedals or training wheels, so children ages 2-6 use their feet to propel themselves along. 100% renewable birch plywood. Helps children learn balance, improve motor skills, increase strength and develop confidence on two wheels earlier than ever before. Available in three different styles. $149.95-$179.99,

Norman PhartEphant

Stone by Stone Mosaic Craft Kits Easily design beautiful mosaic art with Stone By Stone Mosaics. These kits eliminate the need for goggles, tile cutters, nippers and gloves. Kits contain mosaic tiles, templates, glue, grout, sponges and other necessary tools. Choose from Clock Kit, House Number Kit, Sundial Kit or Mirror Kit. $17.99, 20 | November 2009

Kids love stuffed animals - but this one will have kids in stitches. Norman PhartEphant a 10 inch elephant plush toy with sound! Squeeze his tail to hear one of 8 different sounds! Of course, Norman apologizes on occasion - and it's a great toy product to help teach children about bodily functions and how to respond. $21.95,

For Her The Bowler Camera Bag

A fun, stylish alternative to the standard camera bag, the Bowler is perfect for anyone who brings their camera anywhere and everywhere. Design is reminiscent of classic bowling ball cases and features a fully padded interior offering complete protection. $39.95,

Pangea’s Radiance Gift Set Packed with plant-based ingredients, powerful antioxidants and key minerals, vitamins and essential oils, this set works to balance, nurture and nourish your skin from the inside out. Includes facial cleanser, scrub & mask, lip balm and eye cream. Gift boxes are 100% compostable, biodegradable and plantable. $100, available exclusively at

LUSH Cosmetics Fresh handmade cosmetics are the perfect gift for girls and women of all ages. Made from fresh, organic fruit and vegetables, the finest essential oils and safe synthetics. $3.95 and up, LUSH Store Atlantic City and

Engravable Bookmarks

Serif Digital Scrapbook Artist

Five new glimmering silver bookmarks with a mirrored finish, crystal accents and lots of room for engraving a name or favorite quote. Offered in heart, star, cross, flower and butterfly designs. $12, Things Remembered Stores or

Great for anyone who loves to snap photos and wants to get a little creative. Fun and easy-to-use. Digital Scrapbook Artist offers all the creativity of a craft store – from papers, to scissors, to embellishments and glitter. $49.99,

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This trendy ID bracelet incorporates masculine gunmetal finish and features a steel mesh band with an engraving plate at its center. $30, Things Remembered Stores or

GoPro Cameras The GoPro makes an awesome gift for active and outdoorsy types. These digital wearable sports cameras are designed and tested by sports enthusiasts. Five megapixel cameras shoot video and still photos, are The NeoCube waterproof (to 100 ft), shock proof, wireless, and plays Composed of 216 individual high-enerfootage back on computer or TV - no additional softgy rare-earth magnets, the NeoCube ware needed. Extensive selection of interchangeable allows you to create and recreate an mounts allows hands free recording while participating outrageous number of shapes and patin sports/activities. Cameras can be worn on wrist, chest terns. Perfect for gaming, expression, or head, or mounted to anything - helmets, surf stress relief, dual hemisphere brain boards, kayaks or cars. Now available: True stimulation and much more. Not 1080p HD video that shoots gorgeous designed for children under age 12. crystal clear video that has to be seen $12.95 and up, to be believed. $139.99 and up, November 2009 | 21

For Anyone Ducky Pull Frame Two playful ducks are the centerpiece of this figural frame. A small ducky peaks out from behind a parent duck and both are held together by a string pulley. Personalize with baby’s name and date of birth. $45, Things Remembered Stores or

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Paint Your Life Transform your photos into portraits! Paint Your Life’s site creates graphic interpretations on canvas from your photographs in an array of artistic styles. Choose from oil, charcoal, watercolor and more. It’s simple: upload your photo and their professional artists paint it by hand to your specifications. The whole process takes a little over a week and the finished pieces are shipped flat or rolled anywhere in the world! $69 and up,

Velvet Stockings Available in either a rich cranberry or forest green velvet design, the new stockings incorporate delicate stitching, a hook for hanging and an engravable heart-shaped charm. Add the recipient’s name, along with 2009. $25, Things Remembered Stores or

This music player is unlike any other. Comes pre-loaded with 1,000 songs from Billboards top-charting artists and categorized into 7 playlists for you by genre including Rock, Country, Contemporary, Alternative, Hip Hop, Workout and Chillout. Player also features FM Radio, 13 hours of battery life and a clip to attach to clothing. $99, Radio Shack and

iPopperz Ear Buds Stylishly designed ear buds for fashionable ‘tweens and teens who enjoy customizing their accessories to match their personalities. Compatible with all iPod, and other MP3 devices, as well as all portable CD and DVD players. Five themes to choose from. $14.95$19.95,

Engraved Wine/Champagne Tool Set A good bottle of wine or champagne is always a hostess favorite. Pair it with this boxed wine tool set, which comes complete with an engravable cork remover and several wine stoppers in an elegant presentations/ storage box. $65, Things Remembered Stores or


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22 | November 2009

response, though. If it increases their frustration, it’s best to find a different way. Request a fix. Try asking your child to talk without whining. Ask, “Can you tell me again in your big boy/girl voice?” or “Can you ask in a better way?” Give your child a chance to correct the whining. Pay attention. Kids whine more frequently when they are tired or frustrated. Sometimes a hug and a simple expression of empathy go a long way toward a remedy. “I know you’re tired, but can you please ask me without whining?” often works well. Do not give in. When your child whines, do not give into the temptation to do whatever he wants just to appease him. While giving him what he wants when he whines will often stop the whining for the moment, it also teaches him that whining is a way to get what he wants. Instead, point out that whining is not a way to get what he wants. Praise him when he corrects his tone and when he asks you something in a non-whiny voice. Do not whine. The parental form of whining is nagging. When you repeatedly ask your child to pick up his toys or put his dish in the sink, your own frustration can rise and lead to a whining sound of your own. Nadine Caprio Parlapiano of South Jersey remembers when her own

know 2 grow


very mom is familiar with her child’s ability to draw out a simple one-syllable word into two or more syllables. Mo-om. The sound is like nails on a chalkboard. Whining is a habit children develop early and one of the most common sources of frustration parents face. As frustrating as it is, most parents are at a loss for ways to get their children to stop whining and start talking. Fortunately, a few small fixes can help minimize the amount and frequency of that ever-frustrating sound. Ignore it. When a child begins to whine, he is demanding attention. By not giving the child that attention, you send the message that whining will not work. To make sure the child knows you have heard him, use a phrase like, “I can’t understand you when you talk that way.” Mirror it. Try repeating the tone back. Whining is a habit that children easily fall into without even realizing it. Let them know how they sound by repeating back what they have said and then say it again in a non-whining way. Laugh it off. Whining is often an indicator of a child’s frustration. You can make a joke out of it by responding lightly in a whine of your own. This can help a child recognize that he is whining. Not all kids are appreciative of this kind of

mother used to nag her to clean her room or set the table. She ignored her mom’s requests and both she and her mother felt frustrated. As a mom herself, she says, “I often find myself, if you will, slipping into my mother’s nagging shoes.” She says it’s just as ineffective as it was for her own mom. Now she simply asks and, if her kids do not respond, she issues consequences, such as loss of privileges or taking away toys. By refraining from constantly repeating herself and by letting her kids know what she expects of them, she leaves little room for whining on either end. There is no magic cure for whining. As long as kids are kids, they are sure to slip into whining mode from time to time. Try the tips and techniques above to help reduce the amount of whining and bring peace to your aching ears. So the next time you hear that little voice begging you, “But why can’t I just watch one more show?” step back, take a deep breath, and give your child the tools he or she needs to change their whining ways.

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How to Curb

Complaints About

School By Judy M. Schneider, IBCLC

Many moms dread dealing with complaints about school. It’s contagious; older ones infect the younger ones with the complaining bug…and it’s a vicious cycle. uzi Ryan of Newfield says, “My twin boys just started kindergarten. Their biggest complaint was that they had to raise their hand and wait for the teacher to call on [them] in order to speak. I asked them what would happen if all the kids in class started talking at the same time and they decided that it would be very noisy. Allowing my boys to come to that conclusion on their own has helped them understand this rule,” says Ryan. Complaints about school usually fall into categories such as fatigue, food, friends, facts, faculty, facilities and fun. When a child is sleep deprived or hungry, they are more disagreeable. Friends (and enemies) can cause bad feelings and affect how a child feels about school. During the school day, learning is often a lot of facts and memorization. When they are bored or confused, students complain about the learning process. Some children love their teachers, but just as many think their teacher does not like them. After all, getting along is one of the hardest things we all have to do. Some teachers, staff and children are naturally easier to love. Riding the school bus, sitting at a desk, using the bathroom, and unlocking a locker are all facility challenges that can be sources of grief. Most will complain there is not enough fun, games and recess in their day when


physical education has been cut or limited. Some habitual complainers can find endless things to grumble about. As an experienced teacher, Elaine Hannan, who teaches at Cumberland Christian School in Vineland, shares her complaint solution. “I had a fifth grade class that had a tendency to grumble and complain. I decided that, if I heard groaning, I would double the assignment. I gave a math assignment of solving the even numbers 2-20. They moaned quite audibly. I said, “Your complaining changed my mind. Please do #1-20.” They said, “We’re sorry. We’ll stop complaining.” I replied, “I’m sorry, it’s too late.” They did #1-20 that day . . . and they literally never complained again. The funny part is they started thanking me whenever I handed out an assignment, quiz or test to them. Now, at the beginning of each school year, I tell my new class that story . . . and they learn that complaining does not pay.” When you get complaints, first determine if they are valid, venting or just bad habit. Good communication with the teachers and school can go a long way to resolving issues. Many teachers say don’t believe everything your child says about the teacher if you don’t want them to believe everything they say about you.

Steps To Dealing With Complaints 1. Listen to the whole story without interrupting; kids need time to vent, too. 2. Ask the child, “How can you solve the problem?” 3. Celebrate every time they independently resolve a complaint. 4. Talk to the source to collect facts and get the other perspective. Sometimes this has to be without the knowledge of the student. 5. Protect your child from emotional or physical danger. Bullying can be the underlying cause of some complaints.

Be Proactive 1. Make sure your children get plenty of sleep at night. A tired child will be grumpy and more apt to complaining. 2. Greet children with a healthy snack after school. Hunger can cause children to be short tempered and whiny. 3. Ask “What was the best part of your day? The worst?” 4. Avoid letting them hear you complain about their school or teacher. 5. Point out the blessings. See the glass as half full, not half empty. November 2009 | 25

By Gwen Recinto


he math you did as a child may seem like “forever” ago. When you think about how you learned – from your teachers and your parents – you may feel nostalgic and even have great memories … or maybe you don’t. Whatever the case, there are things you can do to help foster a positive learning experience for your child – and even make math fun. You can help him or her feel accomplished and play an important part in building a solid base for your child’s learning. “Parents today are likely concerned about the ‘new math’ methods such as lattice multiplication,” says Rebecca Todd, an 8th grade math, algebra and geometry teacher at DeMasi Middle School in Evesham. Lattice multiplication is a way of solving long multiplication problems with a grid. “This technique is a lot different than what we learned as kids – but parents should not be intimidated.” Todd encourages parents to talk to their child about math daily and ask how to do a problem. “Kids who are able to

26 | November 2009

teach their parents – and others – truly understand the information.” Todd offers these additional tips:  Review the information taught in class.  Use examples your child can relate to – such as sports, food or shopping. Students remember when math is meaningful and important to them.  Make sure your child works the math problems to get ready for a test. Math cannot just be “looked at.”  Take advantage of online game sites and resources. Make homework a priority “Our kids are in different grades and are learning various things – but we make sure their homework is a priority,” says Cheryl Zekas, a mother of five from Gloucester Township. “When doing homework together, dialogue is important. Review directions together to make sure you child understands the problem. Ask where to start, if

he or she can find information in his or her notes, and if there is a similar problem in the textbook.” Zekas also suggests asking your child if they can draw or make a model to explain his or her thinking. She encourages parents to ask guiding questions: What should we do next? Did you answer the question? Can you solve it another way? Set a good example Whether you decide to count money from the change jar together, encourage your child to figure out the tip from a restaurant bill or simply ask them what they learned at school – get involved! “Remember that children are easily influenced. If you have a good attitude about math, so will your children! Be sure to point out the many ways you use math in your everyday life and you will soon have a young, accomplished and confident mathematician,” says Todd.

By Sheila Taney, RN, MSN

green mama


y children drink a lot of juice and milk throughout the day. At the end of most days, I have a plastic cap or two on my kitchen counter and start to accumulate them after a few days. I hate to throw these out, so here are some fun things to do with them.


 Create a magnet by decorating with other recycled goods. Attach a magnet piece on one end and use for artwork or memos for the refrigerator.  Place stickers on the inside of the caps. When done, play a memory game.  Use as a cookie cutter.  Attach to small cardboard fruit containers and make a rolling vehicle.  Label the caps and use them as play money  Create reward tokens. Store them in a reused container. Determine your own reward system. Always keep the cap in a reusable container or bag. Let your children get creative in finding other uses for the caps. Keep them away from infants and do not let your children chew on them.

watching your child’s


every week...

Dancing with Mommy Creative Dance 18 months to 3yrs old 3yrs to 5yrs old Hippity Hop Ages 4 to 6

All classes boys & girls! Also available 6 yrs & older: Hip Hop Ballet Tap Jazz Musical Theatre

Sheila Taney has two children and resides in Cherry Hill. She is passionate about teaching her children and others how they can participate in saving the environment.

GIVE THE GIFT OF South Jersey MOM THIS YEAR! For Just $24.99, get:  Home delivery of South Jersey MOM magazine each month  Our monthly e-newsletter in your inbox To purchase a gift membership cut out the form and mail payment to: South Jersey MOM P.O. Box 2413, Vineland, NJ 08362-2413 Name __________________________________________________________ Address ________________________________________________________

5360 Route 42 • Whitman Plaza Turnersville


City ______________________________State________ Zip _______________ Phone __________________________________________________________ Email __________________________________________________________

November 2009 | 27

Looking for Child Care? Promote children, families and quality learning in Gloucester and Cape May Counties

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28 | November 2009

Dr. Hayat of Alpha Dental makes visiting the dentist fun!

TO TIP OR NOT TO TIP… That is the Question!

By Linda Arceo

ith the holiday season fast approaching, many of us will currency. They are allowed sit at our kitchen table, write our holiday cards and make to accept the following items during the our gift list and then think about the people in our lives holiday season: snacks and beverages or perishable who fall into that gray area. gifts that are not part of a meal, small gifts (travel mugs, hand You know who I’m talking about – the paper delivery person warmers, etc…) that are clearly valued at no more than $20. who strategically leaves the note and envelope with your Sunday Perishable items worth more (large fruit baskets or cookie tins) paper; or maybe it’s the sanitation worker, the dog walker, your must be shared with the entire branch. hairdresser, the manicurist, the daycare provider(s), your coffee In these tough economic times, it’s important to remember barista (whom you’ve probably already tipped $100 this year that holiday tipping is a way to thank the people who perform alone!), your gym trainer or the school bus driver. Who is in and services for you year-round. These are the people you count on who is out? when you need them and who often go beyond the call of duty to Seriously, how can anyone possibly keep up with tipping meet your needs. You know whom I’m talking about – the manitrends and all of the people who provide valuable services everycurist who squeezes you into her already-booked schedule for a day? Do they or don’t they deserve a tip? Here are some “tips” touch up or the groomer who attends to your dog at a moments (pun intended), as suggested by world-renowned etiquette experts, notice. That being said, now is not the time to go broke either. The Emily Post Institute, for some of the more common tipping Watch your budget, be creative and thank everyone on your holiscenarios you might encounter this holiday season. day tipping list. When in doubt, let the holiday spirit be your As a general rule, you will most certainly be covered if you guide. tip your service provider the cost of week, day, session, etc., in addition to a small gift. For example, a nanny, housekeeper or live-in help should receive a total of one week’s pay. A regular babysitter should receive the equivalent of one evening’s pay. Daycare providers should receive $25$70 for each staff member that cares for your child, in addition to the suggested small gifts from the children. Other services that may warrant a holiday tip or small gift include: a consistent barber or preferred salon employee, who should be tipped according to the cost of one • 1 Year Anniversary Celebration on service (e.g., haircut, manicure, etc.). A fitness trainer should be tipped the cost of one Sat., Nov. 7th from 10am-4pm session and a groomer should also be tipped • Christmas Open House on the cost of one session. Newspaper delivery Sat., Nov. 28th from 10am-4pm persons and trash/recycling carriers should be tipped anywhere from $10-$30. Sweetpea’s—A Children’s Shoppe $35 or more People that should not, or cannot, NEW AND GENTLY HUGGED CONSIGNMENT ITEMS (excluding already receive a tip include teachers. Instead, a discounted items) 856.213.6739 • small gift should be given from the child. With this coupon. 2757 S. Main Road, Vineland (Sherman & Main Rds.) United States Postal Service gift regulations One coupon per visit. Sun./Mon.: closed • Tu.-Th.: 10-5 state that mail carriers may not accept cash Expires 11/30/09. Fri.: 10-6 • Sat.: 10-4 gifts, checks, gift cards or any other form of


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November 2009 | 29

book review

Tale Spin Stories Read-to-Me Book Reviews By Kathryn Ross, a.k.a. “Miss Kathy”

e are big into historical re-enactments at our house. There is the Renaissance Faire with all manner of T HEME : Thanksgiving medieval costumes to wear, and the Civil War Ball B OOK : Off to Plymouth Rock where I get to waltz about in a hoop skirt. Then, once fall hits, all A UTHOR /I LLUSTRATOR : Dandi Daley Marshall things pumpkin and Pilgrims are the main course as Thanksgiving nears. EAN: 9781400304738 When I was teaching, November was a busy month with no end to plays room or parent and child reading times at home. and dress-up celebrating Follow-up Activity: Break out the Pilgrim and Indian costumes Plimoth Plantation Day for the whole family! Use this story as an outline for dramatic reand the first Thanksgiving enactment. Embellish the simple lines of the poem by acting out in 1621 in that tiny Cape the parts and plot. Everyone in the family can play a part. Then Cod settlement. Of course, explore recipes using some of the foods illustrated on the the folks in Jamestown Thanksgiving table. Let everyone have a chance to prepare a dish like to claim that theirs and celebrate, in character, this Thanksgiving day! was the first Thanksgiving Kathryn Ross is a professional storyteller celebrating the love of learning and a year earlier – but, what would Thanksgiving be without the literacy with children of all ages. She hosts Tale Spin Stories every Tuesday for Mayflower and Plymouth Rock! preschoolers at the Cumberland Mall in Vineland. To learn more about Miss Kathy Dandi Daley Mackall seems to agree and penned the lyrical programs from Pageant Wagon Productions, visit words to a rhythmic poem recalling the great American adventure of Pilgrims setting off from England to the Virginia colonies in America in 1620. They were pushed off course by a storm at sea and landed in the colder regions of Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Late in the season, they chose to build their settlement in a clearing they named Plimoth (now spelled “Plymouth”) and drafted the historic Mayflower Compact as their governing charter. Soon cold, snow and sickness plagued the Pilgrims, diminishing their numbers significantly by spring. Local Indians befriended them and showed them The Ultimate place to let your little how to farm the land. By the following turkeys run wild! Private November, the harvest was gathered and a Thanksgiving day rentals available. feast declared to thank God for His provision and blessing. BLACK FRIDAY BABYSITTING: Ms. Mackall sums up all these details Shop the doorbusters without the in a simple poetic text that begs to be recitextra “baggage!” 6am to 8pm ed aloud to the beat of clapping hands and must register in advance. dramatic movements. This picture book, featuring luscious watercolor illustrations flooded with details by illustrator Gene Barretta, is accompanied by a CD with more ways to enjoy the story, including read along, speak along, sing along, clap along and more. This is a winner for the class-


30 | November 2009

Great Kids, Going Places. Kendra Whitfield ’09 Hometown: Berlin Activities/Honors: National Achievement Outstanding Participant; Mexico Service Trip; Women’s Choir; MLK, Jr. Service Club; Soccer; Senior Play Memorable Academic Project: Mexico Service Trip

The Center for Autism Research at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia is looking for participants for a research study focusing on early brain development.

Who are we looking for? • Infant siblings of typically developing children • Infant siblings of children with autism

College Destination: Georgetown University Career Interests: Child Psychology

“The MFS community is filled with encouraging people who genuinely care about your success as a student and as an individual.”

Moorestown Friends School Moorestown Friends is dedicated to academic excellence, ethical development, diversity and service to the community. Highest SAT scores in South Jersey.

Meet great kids like Kendra at an upcoming Open House: Saturday, November 14, 10 a.m.

For more information, call (856) 235-2900, e-mail or visit 3 year olds through 12th grade

110 E. Main St. Moorestown, NJ 08057

November 2009 | 31

things 2 do

November Calendar

For a complete list of events, log onto

To submit your event, send an email to Entries are due eight weeks prior to the event and are filled on a first come first serve basis. Space is limited.


Tree Lighting November 28 at 6 p.m. Join the fun with a tree lighting ceremony, caroling, cookies, hot cocoa & Santa. Main St., Mays Landing. 23rd Annual Christmas Craft & Home Show November 7 from 9a to 3p Crafts, food and door prizes. Rt. 50 & Empire St., South Egg Harbor. (609) 653-1136

BURLINGTON COUNTY A Christmas Carol November 28-December 5 This charming version of the holiday classic simply and directly tells the story of the redemption of a human soul, following the everpowerful story of Scrooge. Suitable for the whole family. Fri. 7:30p, Sat. 3 & 7:30p, Sun. 3p; $8/person. Bridge Players Theatre Company, 36 E. Broad St, Burlington. (856) 303-7620, Alpaca Holiday Market and Farm Tour November 28 from 10a to 4p Take a farm tour to learn about alpacas. Fleeces, yarn, clothing, toys and other country crafts available for purchase. FREE admission. Jersey Breeders Alpacas, 364 Tuckerton Rd, Tabernacle. (609) 519-8448,

CAMDEN COUNTY Train Festival November 14 & 15 Festival features our own permanent G-Scale display and Arrow River 1/3-scale Train Ride. Crafts, games, vendors, exhibitors and a reading of The Polar Express. Camden Children’s Garden, 3 Riverside Dr, Camden. (856) 365-8733, Open Arms Adoption Network Meeting Nov. 12 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. We welcome all who are thinking about adoption to attend this free informational meeting to learn about our programs. Registration required. 32 | November 2009

The Katz JCC, 1301 Springdale Rd., Cherry Hill. (267) 256-2053 CHHRC’s Second Annual Ladies’ Evening Nov. 12 from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Raise money for a charity that helps families affected by childhood cancer; enjoy yummy food & cocktails, get hair/make-up done, shop for jewelry, clothes & more! Also looking for models for fashion show, all shapes/sizes welcome! FREE babysitting in FunZone nursery! Cherry Hill Health and Racquet Club, Cherry Hill. Contact Trish Sigismondi at for details. Princess & Pirate Brunch November 8 from 10a to 1p Cinderella, Ariel, Jasmine, Snow White with Pirate Breakfast. Face painting, balloons, glitter tattoos, songs and nursery rhymes, great memories for your children without the plane ride. $25/child, $35/adult. seating is limited! Maggiano’s, Cherry Hill. Reservations required. (856) 701-8734

CAPE MAY COUNTY Cape May Jazz Fest November 6-9 The 32nd Annual Cape May Jazz Festival includes Jam Sessions Saturday and Sunday in Carneys, Blues Jams in Cabanas with Alan Weber and Frenz Saturday and Frank Bey and the Swing City Blues Band Sunday along with the complimentary workshops Saturday at Cape May Elementary School and the Saturday CD Signing Party compliments of Barefoot Wines. Located at Theatre at Lower Regional High School. Visit for tix. Chocolate Fantasy Buffet November 21 Indulge your dark side or your lightest desires... in the decadence of a completely Chocolate Buffet. Kathleen Cressman-Pastiu, Executive Pastry Chef of the Washington Inn, presents this tantalizing gastronomic fete, a seemingly endless buffet that includes white, milk and dark chocolate fondues, pies, cakes and pastries. $35/person. Limited attendance;

advance ticket purchase necessary. (609) 884-5404 or 800-275-4278 or visit

Emlen Physick Estate Christmas Tours Nov. 20 to Jan. 3, daily Visit the 1879 Physick Estate, Cape May’s only Victorian house museum, decorated in authentic Victorian style. Learn about Victorian Christmas decorations and traditions on this guided daytime tour. Can also be combined with a historic district trolley tour. $10/adult; $5/child (age 3-12). Call (609) 884-5404 or 800-2754278 for more info.

CUMBERLAND COUNTY Complimentary Murad Facials November 24 from 4 to 7 p.m. Enjoy a complimentary 20 minute mini facial to get that holiday glow! Space is limited. Reservation required. Utopia Salon and Day Spa, 510 N East Ave, Vineland. (856) 794-9200 Holiday Parades Millville: Nov. 27 at 7 p.m. High St – from Harrison St to Main St. (856) 825-2600; Vineland: November 28 at 7 p.m., Landis Ave. from 2nd St to Myrtle St. (856) 794-8653; Bridgeton: November 29 at 2 p.m., Commerce St. (856) 455-3230 ext. 280 Tea Time Bingo for Adults November 11 from 7 to 9 p.m. An evening of desserts and games. Prizes awarded throughout the evening. $15/person (tax & gratuity included). Prepaid reservations required. Call early-this event will sell out. Vintage Rose Tea Room, 132 N. High St, Millville.(856) 293-0500.

GLOUCESTER COUNTY Peter Pan November 6-28 A live production of the loved family classic fairytale about growing up. Broadway Theatre of Pitman, 43 South Broadway, Pitman. (856) 3848381 or Nature Tots November 18 at 10 a.m. Search for wild turkeys and other animal signs. Make a turkey craft for Thanksgiving. Nature Center (Scotland Run Park), Clayton Street (Rte 610), Clayton. Call Jill Taylor at (856) 881-0845 or email POWERFUL YOU! WOMEN’S NETWORK November 19 from 7 to 9:30 p.m. Powerful You! Women’s Network is open to all women who have an interest in networking/connecting with other women on a business/ professional level, light dinner, discussions, relationships. Blue Eyes Restaurant, 139 Egg Harbor Rd, Sewell. $25/members and new attendees; $35 non-members. Contact Shaun Stephenson at (609) 560-8370 or or for more info.

SALEM COUNTY Women Inspiring Women Conference November 7 from 8:30a to 2p This event will motivate women experiencing difficult circumstances that create barriers to success. Registration and continental breakfast start at 8:30 a.m. at Davidow Hall at Salem Community College, 460 Hollywood Ave., Carneys Point. Call (856) 3512626 for more info. Spinning Leaves November 6 from 8 to 10 p.m. Michael Baker and Barbara Gettes, otherwise known as The Spinning Leaves, are changing the world one song at a time. Their self-released, self-produced album LOVE! is a warm, welcoming and charismatic collection of acoustic music. 1-800-394-1211, Appel Farm Arts & Music Center, 457 Shirley Rd, Elmer.


By Eileen Cassidy Bishop


h, November. The leaves have all been raked up, the jack-o-lanterns have shriveled up and been disposed of; it’s a time to sit back and relax before the onslaught of the Christmas season! Um‌ no, not in my book anyway! I come from a very, very, verrrry large family. We get together (all of us, that is, within the tri-state area) once a year; twice if we’re lucky. But, since we can’t count on that second time, we need to make the most of the guaranteed once...Thanksgiving. We celebrate our Thanksgiving Day on the day AFTER Thanksgiving. We started doing this when I was a kid, originally to beat the traffic out to my aunt’s house in Long Island (back when there was only traffic on holidays‌remember that?!?), but it has more recently become about ensuring no one can opt out due to other family plans (aka in-laws).

Depending on your plans, the day can begin very, very early! We have a traditional golf outing known as the “GobbleGobble Open� at a course near my aunt’s house and, if you want to join in and you live in South Jersey, you have to be on the road by 6am (that’s after consuming large quantities of turkey and trimmings the day before) for an 8am tee time. My husband has done this a couple of times but, even BC (before children), I chose sleep and traveling separately! Golfing (and I use that term loosely) lasts until either cocktail hour or until the cold chases everyone from the course. The less hardy, or smarter, family members (aka mothers and children) go bowling in a warm building where, instead of a hush falling over the crowd when you address the ball, there’s trash talk and hooting! Now seriously, which activity sounds more appealing to you?

thinking out loud

Turkey Palooza

Whatever we do that day, though, the important thing is that we are all together to give thanks, to welcome at least one new person to the fold, whether it be a new love or a new baby, to laugh and hug and tell bad jokes until we take a final sip of coffee, say our good-byes and make our promises to stay more in touch, and to start the long trek back home. Although it’s a crazy day and we’re all completely exhausted the next day, it helps us look forward to the holidays right around the corner (not the annoyed feeling you get when you shop the malls and the Christmas trees are up in October). There is nothing like family. Big, small, Christian, Jewish, meat eaters or vegetarians; we get what we get and we don’t get upset (well, okay, we may get upset, but we get over it‌eventually!) Happy Thanksgiving from my family to yours!! Eileen Cassidy Bishop is a National Sales Rep turned stay-at-home mom from Florence, NJ who, along with her husband Gene, is raising their two children, Leo and Catherine and doing whatever she can to keep her name from coming up at her children's therapy sessions twenty years from now!

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November 2009 | 33

resource guide


MONDAY MORNING MOMS® A Child’s Home Away From Home. Family Childcare Management Service with a network of reliable, thoroughly screened caregivers offering education-based, small group learning environments. Offering a safe and affordable alternative to large daycare centers. (856) 802-0500 or

CLASSES JUMPBUNCH SPORTS & FITNESS FOR KIDS Introduces sports and fitness to children in a non-competitive environment. 18 mos-12 years. Classes improve gross motor skills, hand/eye coordination, balance, and selfesteem & teamwork. For details contact Jamie (856) 433-8220, Ask about our birthday parties & summer camps!

CONSIGNMENT SERVICES BRING DOWN THE COST OF GROWING UP AT KIDSTUFF! KIDSTUFF consignment shop specializes in superior pre-owned clothes for kids. Vast selection of high quality & designer brands, all in excellent condition at fraction of original cost. Recycle your child’s “still like-new” clothing back into cash!, (856) 589-7171

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 or embroidered. Beautifully wrapped and available for pick-up at our new Gibbsboro location, or we can ship it. Call (856) 627-8901 or check out

HEATING AND AIR CONDITIONING LOOKING FOR A RELIABLE, HONEST, AFFORDABLE HEATING CONTRACTOR? Then you’ve found them! For new construction, including custom homes, upgrades, change outs or renovations call RJ Mechanical for all your HVAC needs. (856) 690-9692.

HOME DECOR ENJOY COMING HOME! Let Lori’s Stitching Studio help you make home your haven by providing custom window treatments, light upholstery and

other soft furnishings. In-home consultation and fabric selection. Call now for an appointment (856) 358-8553 or

JOB OPPORTUNITIES RAISE YOUR INCOME WHILE RAISING YOUR FAMILY You can make extra money without putting the kids in daycare. You set your own hours. No billing, no collections, no carrying inventory, no large investment. Great local support. Call us today at (856) 305-7680.

PARENTING TIPS IS YOUR CHILD ALWAYS RUNNING LATE FOR SCHOOL? If your child is always running late for school no matter what you say and do, help solve this problem by going to for a free copy of 7 Steps to Responsible Kids Who Get Ready for School on Time or call (856) 816-2916. ATTENTION BUSINESS OWNERS AND HR PERSONNEL! Help employees reduce family stress. Allow me to conduct a brown-bag seminar at your worksite where parents can learn a parenting style that promotes cooperation and positive behaviors in children. For more information, contact or call (856) 816-2916.

PARTIES – CHILDREN ABRAKADOODLE ARTY PARTIES ART is FUN and ABRAKADOODLE parties are EASY for parents - plus EACH GUEST takes home a FRAMED masterpiece. Call us to learn more! Creative party themes for children 3-12 yrs; (856) 914-0521 or visit

Is your child the

PARTIES – ADULT NOOKIE PARTIES Host a Nookie Party & earn FREE romance products! Cash-n-carry available! Free 2-night vacation for party hostesses! Book your party today! (856) 397-2234 or Check out our New Boutique on Wheels. We bring the store to you! COME H.O.M.E. TO TUPPERWARE! Let us help you be healthier, organized, make n save money, and better our environment! Ways to bring Tupperware home: In home Parties, book sales, fundraisers or by joining our awesome team! Lisa Orndorf-Adelman at (609) 941-8545, or

PEDIATRIC OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY NEED HELP GUIDING YOUR CHILD’S DEVELOPMENTAL JOURNEY? At The Schlinic, happy childhoods are our specialty. Kids come for awesome motor equipment, fun sensory experiences and developmental play. Parents come for answers, professionals who listen, assessments and research-supported intervention. Learn more at or call Dr. Jodi at (856) 692-9292.

WILLS/ESTATE PLANNING WHO WILL TAKE CARE OF YOUR CHILDREN? Appointing Guardians for your minor children is one of the most important aspects of Estate Planning. Complimentary initial consultation. Mention this ad and receive 15% discount for Nov. Contact James F Fahy, Esq., LLC to learn more. Call (856) 287-3107 or email


Every month, South Jersey MOM will feature a local child on the cover! If you think you have the cutest kid in town, send a 4x6 photo and a $15 entry fee to P.O. Box 2413, Vineland, NJ 08362-2413. If your child(ren) is/are selected, we will arrange a FREE professional photo shoot and they could be on our next cover for all your friends and family to see! Sorry, photos cannot be returned. Parent Name: ________________________________________________________________________________ Address:________________________________________________________ Phone: _______________________ Child(ren) Name(s) & Birthdates: ________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________________________________

34 | November 2009

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Center For Family Services Thrift Shop helps benefit your family and ours: ¡ We accept donations of new & gently used items including: household and kitchen items, baby items, toys, books, shoes and clothing for all ages. (No large furniture or appliances) ¡ Save your family money! Shop our large selection of the above listed items with very reasonable prices. ¡ Donations are tax deductible Thrift Shop Hours Open For Shopping & Drop-Offs: Wednesday - Saturday, 10am - 4pm *After hours drop off shed available in rear of thrift shop. DO NOT leave items at front door.

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Center For Family Services offers more than 40 programs to improve the lives of vulnerable children and families in South Jersey, helping people to live happier, healthier lives. Donations to the Center’s thrift shop benefit the children and families in our programs. Thank you for your support.

November - South Jersey Mom Magazine  

The November 2009 issue of South Jersey MOM Magazine