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on the cover


As shown below: Hyatt Thorp (17), Amelia Needles (13), Sammy Kapoor (16), Eyob Needles (15), Emma Kendrick (16) Photo by Randy Pace

w w w.a u g ust afa m i l y. co m


Ashlee Griggs Duren


Aimee Serafin


Michael Rushbrook


ADVERTISING SALES Doressa Hawes Mary Porter Vann




Kim Beavers, MS, RD, CDE Meredith Flory Karen Gordon Dr. Dana Harris Cammie Jones Dustin Turner Dr. Kelly Watson

A Publication of MCC Magazines, LLC A division of Morris Communications Company, LLC | 735 Broad St., Augusta, GA 30901 Morris Communications Company, LLC William S. Morris III, Chairman William S. Morris IV, President & CEO Morris Visitor Publications Donna W. Kessler, President Dennis Kelly, Chief Financial Officer Scott Ferguson, Director of Operations

Augusta Family Magazine is published 9 times per year and distributed throughout the Augusta and Aiken area. Send press releases, story ideas or comments to the editor at or mail to 643 Broad Street, Augusta, Ga., 30901. For advertising information, call (706) 823-3702. For circulation/distribution, call (706) 828-4391. augustafamilymagazine

Is your child ready for their “close up?” If you think you’ve got a “cover kid,” submit their photo and information on our website and they may grace the cover of Augusta Family Magazine. 4 � AUGUSTA FAMILY | SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2019


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We care about career success and educating tomorrow’s leaders, so Prep students develop personal responsibility, a global perspective and service to others in a diverse, welcoming community. Join us today at Augusta Prep and become a Cavalier for life! #Prep4Life

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Mom to Mom

Ask the Doctor

—Karen Gordon

—Dr. Kelly Watson

A Portrait of Today’s Teen Struggles —Dr. Dana Harris

The College Queue —Dustin Turner

Well, He IS 10 Years Old




6 • AugustA FAmily | september/OctOber 2019

Back to School Q&A



37 8

Editors Page


News & Notes




Talkin’ About My Generation —Aimee Serafin

Eating Well With Kim

Smart Mom’s Guide

Raising Readers

—Kim Beavers, MS, RD, LD, CDE

—Cammie Jones

—Meredith Flory

Angela Marshall: The Rags to Riches Motivator—Meredith Flory





Where do the Lunch Boxes Go?

Teaching Your Teen Life Skills

Podcast with Family

Inspiration Station


editor’s notes by Ash lee Duren


s we say goodbye to summer and hello to the return of school and hopefully the cooler temperatures of the fall, I am excited to introduce Aimee Serafin as the new editor of Augusta Family magazine. Aimee and her family moved to the Augusta area roughly three years ago from Savannah where her husband Scott worked at Savannah College of Art and Design. Aimee grew up in Atlanta and graduated from Georgia State University with a degree in French. After living in southern France for six months, she and husband Scott moved to Baltimore, MD to continue their respective educations in graduate school. Aimee furthered her studies in French translation at American University in Washington, DC. She then landed a job at a translation company in Columbia, MD where she used both

8 • AugustA FAmily | september/OctOber 2019

her translation and editing skills. A published author of poetry and devotionals, Aimee enjoys reading, running and spending time with her artistic and athletic teenagers and loving husband of 25 years. Aimee’s family and faith are the most important things to her and she is thrilled to reside in the beautiful garden city of Augusta. We are so excited to welcome Aimee to Augusta Family magazine!

Ashlee Griggs Duren


Warm Water

Water Safety

Small Class Size

Dolphin Team

mom to mom

Ka ren Gord on

Well, He IS 10 Years Old @SayWhatScooter: “Hey Dad. A girl at my school told me that she likes me” Bossman: “Ooooh Scooter. Do you like her?” Scoot: “Yeah, I guess” MOMMY: “Hey. No liking girls til you’re 30!!” Scoot: “Where’d you come from? You can’t be in here. This is MAN STUFF!”


n my previous column, I made a list of all of the wonderful things I had planned for summer. And though I accomplished less than a third of them, I enjoyed the process immensely. My family threw me a surprise party two weeks before my 50th birthday– and Bossman and I are in the process of buying a house. How I will miss being the Mayor of Morgan Road. But adventure awaits. The Scoot spent his summer at every camp we could get him to: Richmond County Schools Cyber Camp, Kids University, MACH Academy, and Kids Across America. He spent the last one with his Dad in Branson, Missouri, and they left town the day after the party. Talk about dropping the mic! I’d made HUGE plans for their week away. I would hang out late, go to hear all of the live music I could stand, enjoy adult beverages, work in my garden and not wear any pants. Well, I did a little of that. But it was weird coming home to an empty, quiet house. That got old quickly. Even Georgia and RosaTBeardGordonParksThomas were acting out it seemed. Our home was definitely off balance without the menfolk, and it goes without saying that I was surprised at just how many little things I take for granted on a daily basis. Having realized that, I’ve made a commitment to be more present and to show up for those who are important, especially at home. So we enter a new adventure. The Scoot at a new school, Bossman and I preparing for the transition to new digs, the big boys and girl are adulting nicely, and the puppies bringing up the rear. I gotta tell ya about the new school. Scooter absolutely LOVES it. Of course, this is only the first week, so I haven’t had to threaten his life to get him out of bed just yet. More on that next time. Until then, continue to be kind. Picked up Little Bossman from school yesterday, and his teacher was raving about how kind and patient he is with the younger children.

Thank You! To all our families for voting us your favorite pediatric dentist since 2011. We are honored and greatly appreciate your ongoing support.

@SayWhatScooter: “I get my kindness from my Dad” Really, dude? ain’t even #PettyWednesday

New Patients Welcome!

Karen Gordon is a singer, songwriter and the founder of Garden City Jazz. She works with the City of Augusta to present the Candlelight Jazz Concert Series each year and has partnered with RCBOE to develop interactive courses such as Taking Notes: Jazz & The American Story and Jazz4Kids. AUGUSTA FAMILY | SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2019 � 11

news&notes September/October 2019




mommy minute From time to time, I bet moms around the world could unite under the banner of one simple phrase: “We need a break.” In a mom’s world where private tutoring, cooking, cleaning, working, carpooling and raising respectable, young adults all take precedence over most personal needs there is sure to arrive a tipping point. At the risk of the family network crashing, it becomes evident that mom deserves a break. Yet, for many of us, once the opportunity arrives we end up back in the kitchen cleaning dirty dishes. I know I do. It’s as if the ongoing years of taking care of others have seriously hijacked memories of the carefree self I once used to be. Well, there is good news! Moms can remember who they once were and who they currently are in ways that look a lot like a well-deserved break. And, this month, it can involve young teens. Here are a few possible ways your teenager can help to lighten your steps moving forward:

B a rk Surveys reveal that 1 in 3 parents have enough concerns about today’s society to closely monitor their kid’s mobile and internet activity. In our increasingly dangerous world there are some helpful ways to keep kids safe. Bark is a parental control phone tracker that identifies risky behavior, symptoms of depression, bullying, sexually explicit content and even substance abuse by analyzing text messages. This simple-to-use app detects potential threats and notifies you as the parent through email and phone alerts. It includes the message in question, the date and time, and the category of behavior it falls under. Bark even suggests “recommended actions” and resources for parents based on expert advice for how to approach sensitive conversations. At $9/month, it is an afforable option and there are no limits to the number of kids or activities that can be monitored.

For more info check out:

1. Have your teens cook dinner one night while you read your favorite book. Ok, so dinner probably won’t be filet mignon in mushroom sauce à la Bobby Flay, but it will provide your teens with appreciation for what it takes to put dinner on the table night after night. (Visit for some simple calzone and miniature quiche recipes that are easy to follow.) 2. Ask your teen to vacuum the house or your car while you go for a long walk. Fresh air does wonders for the brain and body, and walks around the neighborhood are a great way to decompress and relax. 3. A needed mid-week grocery run is a great way for your older teen to help out. You could steal a soak in the tub, polish your nails, or have an uninterrupted conversation with a friend for those 30 minutes. 4. Younger adolescents can walk, feed, and play with the family pet(s) while mom squeezes in some yoga or a quick workout session.

“It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.” - E. E. Cummings

5. All teens are capable of organizing places of heavy traffic like a laundry room, a mud room, or hallways where things are thrown after school. Putting away socks, shoes, folded laundry, and book bags will declutter those busy spaces and afford teens less stress the next time they search for those items. Mom can choose a fun movie or TV show while she waits for the family to finish up, knowing the following morning will prove a little less hectic for them all while trying to get out the door. Bon courage, les mamans !

AugustA FAmily | september/OctOber 2019 • 13

news&notes THE WONDER OF BOYS BOOK BY MICHAEL GURIAN of female and male brains in terms of their I met Michael Gurian two years ago at unique and patterned behaviors. Through the THRIVE summit in North Augusta. The his investigations, Gurian presents practical New York Times best selling author had a arguments for innate competition and direct approach to his explanation of boys aggression in boys and he sights ways for and their behaviors based on his many years parents to guide and direct of studying research on their those propensities toward brains. Gurian has written “The Wonder of Boys healthy outcomes. The author several books, including The is a provocative book explains the importance of Minds of Girls: a New Path that electrifies the community, mentoring, and for Raising Healthy, Resilient, debate over how this support from the primary and and Successful Women, that nation raises sons.” extended relationships found break down his analysis on the — USA Today in families, friends, schools uniquely different behaviors of and mentors. He sums up the males and females. collective needs of boys to be This insightful book met in these relationships during the critical provides a great understanding of why teenage years, and he details the ways that is boys act like boys. Gurian has studied possible for the boys we love. physiological and neurobiological reactions








Quwan Ellis-Asbury

Sundays @ 11:00 Morning Worship Like Us on Facebook and Follow us on Instagram: @thepremisesofchrist NEW LOCATION

2164 Richmond Ave | Augusta GA, 30904 (Monte Sano Auditorium)


SAFE KIDS FAST FACTS When your family is invited to stay with friends or relatives is it appropriate to ask hosts if guns are kept in the house? What about when your kid(s) goes on playdates or sleepovers? If your hosts have guns, is it fitting to ask if they are properly locked away? The answer is “YES”! So as not to appear confrontational, you can approach gun safety by prefacing it with other safety concerns (i.e. do you have a trampoline, zip line, ATV?). “Gun related injuries are now the second leading cause of death to children after motor vehicle crashes. Parents can prevent these injuries by educating themselves, their children and asking about gun safety when their children are visiting other homes,” said Renée McCabe, RN, BSN, Injury Prevention and Safety Program Manager at the Children’s Hospital of Georgia.

million children live in homes with guns. One in three families with children have at least one gun in the house.

monly when guns are in the house. More than 90% of suicide attempts with a gun are deadly.

3. Storing guns properly is complicated. Many people keep guns in nightstands or kitchen drawers for easy access in case an intruder appears. But experts recommend that guns be locked in a secure location, unloaded, with the ammunition kept in a separate location. Safety devices including gun locks, lockboxes and gun safes should be used for every gun. Storage locations, keys, and lock combinations should be hidden from children. However, even when proper precautions are taken, 8 in 10 first graders knows the location of hidden guns, and there are records of toddlers having accidentally killed their parents.

6. Teach children gun safety. Tell them that if they see a gun to stop, don’t touch, get away and tell an adult. And continue discussing this habit of prevention, as most children are likely to handle a gun when they find one.

1. Chances are your hosts will be grateful you made them aware of the issue, especially if they have guns but no young children living at home. Likely, they never considered their guns in relation to having young visitors. One way to approach the issue: “My child is very curious. Do you have any dangerous objects like guns in the house?” A substantial percentage of unintentional shootings of young children occur in the homes of friends and relatives. In some cases, toddlers have pulled triggers at 18 months of age.

4. Ideally, adults with young children should not keep guns, advises the American Academy of Pediatrics. With guns present, it is far more likely that a family member or visitor will be shot than an intruder. About 1,500 children younger than the age of 18 die each year from gun deaths and many more are seriously injured. Adults are expected to take “reasonable steps to deny access to guns by children.” This includes gun purchase, ownership, storage and transport, for example.

2. Surveys show in homes where there are both guns and young children that more than half of the weapons are not properly stored. Americans own about 300 million guns. More than 22

5. Parents of teenagers are even less likely than parents of young children to properly store firearms. Suicide is a leading cause of death among teenagers and occurs almost 10 times more com-

7. Fake guns can be hazardous. Older children have been injured and killed when others have failed to realize what they were holding was not a real weapon. Few children under the age of 8 can tell the difference between real and fake guns. 8. BB, pellet and paintball guns are not toys, says the US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). Some of these guns can shoot at velocities that approach those of real guns at short range, causing more than 20,000 injuries and about four deaths each year, with a large of percentage of injuries and deaths occurring in children. Injuries often involve the eyes. Children should also not put toy gun caps in their pockets as they can ignite due to friction and cause burns or loud noises damaging hearing. Safe Kids Greater Augusta, led by the Children’s Hospital of Georgia, works to prevent accidental childhood injury, the leading killer of children ages 1 to 19. Safe Kids Greater Augusta is a member of the Safe Kids Worldwide network. To find out more about local Safe Kids programs, call 706-721-7606, or visit For more information on Teen Driving check out “Teens in the Driver Seat” at




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ask the doctor Dr. Kelly Wat s on

Back to School Q&A


When to keep your child home sick from school?

or get too talkative. However, for people with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Dis-

Nobody wants their child to miss school. However, keeping your child

order (ADHD), there is a continual pattern of inattention and/or hyperactivity-im-

home when sick is important for the proper care of your child as well as

pulsivity that interferes with functioning, development or social interaction. These

for the prevention of spreading contagious illnesses to others. Children

symptoms are present in more than one setting (school, home, workplace or other

should remain home from school when they have a fever, vomiting and/or diar-

social settings) and symptoms are typically present before 12 years of age and have

rhea, weeping or open skin sores— especially if not able to be covered with a ban-

been occurring for at least 6 months. Currently, doctors and mental health workers

dage— and rashes that are accompanied by fever or behavioral changes. If your

use the umbrella diagnosis of ADHD with further notation of 3 types of presenta-

child is diagnosed with a contagious illness it is advisable to follow your doctor’s

tion: primarily inattentive presentation, primarily hyperactive-impulsive presenta-

instructions about their return to activities. For instance, with bacterial infections

tion or combined presentation when symptoms of both are present. Symptoms of

like Strep throat, your child is to complete the first 24 hours of treatment with an

inattention can include not paying attention to details or making careless mistakes,

antibiotic prior to the return of activities. Lastly, check with schools for any spe-

having difficulty organizing tasks, frequently losing things, being forgetful in daily

cific rules regarding when children need to remain home due to illness.

activities, being easily distracted and not listening when being spoken to directly. Symptoms of hyperactivity and impulsivity include fidgeting or squirming in a seat,

2. What are some things to do at home that lessen the chances of

difficulty playing or doing “quiet play” activities, talking continually, having diffi-

getting sick at school?

culty waiting to take turns, frequently interrupting others or blurting out answers,

We can’t stop all illnesses from affecting our children, but there are some things to do

being always “on the go” and unable to stay seated when expected.

that may help reduce the possibility. Teach your kids to wash their hands with soap and water frequently during the day, but particularly after playing outside, before

6. If you suspect your child has ADD or ADHD, what are the

meal prepping and eating, and after bathroom use. Also, when coughing or sneez-

next steps?

ing children should remember to cover their mouths or cough into their sleeves since

If you suspect your child may have ADHD, or perhaps another learning prob-

this prevents the spread of bacteria or virus droplets in the surrounding area. Make

lem at school, there are steps you can take to further understand what is go-

sure your child understands not to share drinks with others kids. Other tips to keep

ing on. Meet with your child’s teacher or school representative to get a bet-

your body and immune system in good shape include making sure vaccinations are

ter idea what they see in the classroom environment as well as to understand

up to date, getting plenty of sleep at night, eating nutritious foods and getting regular

any interventions they may have already tried. Also, set up an evaluation with

physical activity. After all, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

your child’s primary care doctor. This visit may include a detailed history of the child’s problems, a detailed family history for learning problems or mental

3. To vaccinate or not to vaccinate? Vaccinate! Vaccines are safe and they are effective at preventing serious bacterial and viral infections in both children and adults.

health disorders, questions about daily routine, sleep habits and stressors at home or school that may affect your child, as well as a physical exam. Part of the medical aspect of the evaluation is to look for other disorders (such as sleep apnea, seizure disorders, anxiety or depression) that cause school performance

4. How often should vision and hearing be checked?

problems similar to ADHD. There are screening tools used to help evaluate the

All children should have a hearing screen done at birth and then formal screenings

core symptoms of ADHD, and you and your child’s teachers may be asked to

starting again for ages 4, 5, 6, 8, and 10 years old. One additional screening should

complete them. In addition, more detailed evaluations such as a child study or

be done between years 11-14 , 15-17 and 18-21. During routine health visits, risk as-

psychoeducational evaluation can be performed if needed. If diagnosed with

sessments for hearing loss should be performed due to any parental concern about

ADHD, your child’s doctor will help your family design a treatment plan that’s

a child’s hearing. Formal vision screenings for children should be performed at

beneficial for your child as well as discuss options for addressing the ADHD

ages 4, 5, 6, 8, 10, 12 and 15 years old. Risk assessments for any additional vision

with the school. The treatment goal with ADHD is to help children be success-

concerns should be performed at all other routine health visits. Risk assessments

ful in school, have good relationships with their parents, teachers and peers and

help to identify children that may need earlier or more frequent screenings, as well

achieve any dream they set their mind to.

as the need for referrals to specialty care physicians. 5. What are classics symptoms of ADD and ADHD? What is the difference between the two? Everyone has had times when they daydream, feel absent minded, have the fidgets

Dr. Kelly Watson, a Pediatric General and Adolescent Medicine physician at the Augusta University Care Center Grovetown and Children’s Hospital of Georgia, enjoys partnering with families to help them raise healthy children. Her goal is to provide well-rounded care to her patients and their families as she educates, supports and encourages them.

AugustA FAmily | september/OctOber 2019 • 17




eating well with kim Kim Beavers

Where do the lunch boxes go?


his very thought, in fact, has gone through my head during many past school years (especially the middle school years!). Perhaps the lunch boxes hang out with all the missing socks? While lunches and lunch boxes come and go through the years one thing remains the same: the desire to provide nutrient rich food to hungry, growing children. When I saw these muffins on the website I knew I had to try them. They bake up wonderfully and are a great way to increase nutrients for a lunchbox, afternoon snack or a grab-and-go breakfast. In addition, the portability of muffins can’t be beat. If you still have little ones at home try some fun names to market these like “Green Machine Muffins” or “Grinch Muffins” or “Hulk Muffins”. Marketing healthy foods to kiddos is one of our jobs as moms, dads and other adults in charge. If we are excited about fruits, veggies, and other healthy foods it shows. The importance of promoting nutritious foods to children became abundantly clear at a recent meeting I attended. It turns out that 4.6 BILLION is spent to advertise fast food while 116 million is budgeted to promote fruits and veggies. So go forth and eat more fruits, veggies and green things (even muffins). Until next time— eat well, live well! Kim Beavers is a Registered Dietitian and Diabetes Educator for University Health Care System. She lives in North Augusta with her husband and two children and she is the co-host of the culinary nutrition segment Eating Well with Kim, which airs at noon Monday, Wednesday and Friday on WRDW. To be notified of new recipes join Kim’s facebook fan page at To search for specific recipes go to You can also watch the segments at

Sweet Spinach Muffins

These muffins are moist, delicious and very green. What a spectacular way to get in a little spinach! 2 cups flour, whole wheat 1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon 2 teaspoons baking powder 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1/4 teaspoon salt 3/4 cup milk

1/2 cup honey 1 large banana 6 ounces spinach 1/2 cup butter, unsalted 1 large egg 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350ºF, and line a muffin pan with paper liners (or use silicone muffin cups sprayed with cooking spray). Combine all dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Melt butter. Blend the wet ingredients in a blender or food processor until completely pureed. Pour the puree into the dry ingredient bowl, and fold together gently until just combined. (Do not over mix.) Spoon the batter into the muffin pan, and bake for 18-22 minutes, or until the muffins are firm to the touch, but not quite browning. Cool most or all of the way before serving. Yield: 18 muffins (Serving size: 1 muffin) Nutrition Breakdown: Calories 150, Fat 6g (3.5g saturated fat), Cholesterol 25mg, Sodium 150mg, Carbohydrate 22g (8g added sugar), Fiber 2g, Protein 3g. Diabetes Exchanges: 1 ½ Starch, ½ “other” carbohydrate Recipe provided by Super Healthy Kids. For more information and other recipes check out the website: Until next time; eat well, live well ~Kim

AugustA FAmily | september/OctOber 2019 • 19

smart mom’s guide C a m m i e Jo n es

Teaching your Teen Life Skills


ur teens may be able to navigate their smart phone, tablet or computer like no other but I worry about their abilities in the real world. Can they do a load of laundry, fill out a check, balance a checkbook or boil an egg? These are just a few of the key life skills needed by our children— especially before they head off on their own.

1. Basic Kitchen sKills Besides navigating the microwave, it is important that your child knows how to cook on a stovetop and in an oven. Following basic instructions on the back of the frozen pizza box will only be successful if they know how to turn an oven to “bake” at the required temperature. Learning to boil water to make pasta or an egg is another basic skill every teen needs to know. Their expertise in the kitchen will eventually expand to other areas of life but knowing the basic necessary skills will start them in a good direction.

20 • AugustA FAmily | september/OctOber 2019

2. Doing a loaD of launDry Separating laundry into white and color piles will help your teen keep their clothes both clean and long lasting. At least once in a lifetime, I am sure everyone has accidentally thrown in the new red shirt with a load of whites to end up with pink t-shirts and underwear. Knowing to separate clothes and what temperature to wash in is important. A good rule of thumb is to wash whites in warm or hot water and colors in cool or cold. If unsure, cold water is always a safe bet for any color clothes. Before throwing clothes into the washing machine, instruct your child to check jean, pant, or short’s pockets for loose change, an ink pen, a phone or anything else that might mess up the load. Make sure to read the cleaning instructions on the label usually found somewhere on the inside of the article of clothing. Many things should not be put in the

smart mom’s guide dryer so learning to hang dry certain items is another good lesson. Also, some apparel may be “dry clean only,” which obliges a drop to the cleaners.

pizza eating begins. Also, emphasize the need for exercise and getting enough sleep — both of these will contribute to their overall health while at school and will fend off many illnesses.

3. Simple Sewing Your kids are going to have those times when a button falls off their pants or shorts and they have no idea what to do about it. Using a safety pin for a quick fix is resourceful, but knowing how to sew a button is a permanent solution. If the hem falls out of a skirt or article of clothing, having the ability to sew a hem (even if it’s not perfect) will be helpful. And if your child is like me and really isn’t good at crafty stuff, finding a good alterations person or seamstress is a must.

If your teen happens to get sick at school, make sure they know where the health center is located and what services it offers. If it’s just a minor ailment like a cold or sore throat, make sure your child understands how to take their temperature and which over-the-counter medications they may need. Remind teens should they have any allergies to medications.

4. How to Fill out a CHeCk With ATM cards, Venmo and other similar apps, writing a check or even owning a checkbook is a thing of the past. However, there are many cases when a check is needed. Make sure your child knows how to fill out a check correctly and how to cash or deposit it at the bank. 5. Car maintenanCe Today’s vehicles notify you when your car needs basic maintenance such as an oil change or air in the tires. But, does your teen know how to change a tire in an emergency? Carve out a little time one day and teach your teen how to change a tire. Show them how to check their oil and how to put air in the tires as well. Some colleges offer free maintenance check-ups before long breaks. If issues are discovered that go beyond the basic needs, the school can provide a list of things to be further checked out by a local mechanic before they hit the road. Know what your child’s college offers ahead of time regarding vehicle services, and take advantage of this perk. 6. maintaining a Budget Before it’s off to the real world, it is beneficial to have a talk with your teen regarding living within a budget. Mom and Dad are no longer right there to slip them $20 at the last minute so knowing how to budget their monthly allowance is a necessity. No matter if they are earning their own spending money for college or if you are depositing money into their account on a monthly or weekly basis, making money last is a life skill that will serve them for years to come. 7. HealtHy living tipS & HaBitS Discuss healthy food choices, daily exercise needs, and getting enough sleep before they go off to college. It is essential to include healthy eating tips before the late night Waffle House and

8. How to Clean & do BaSiC HouSeHold taSkS A box of Clorox Wipes will most likely do the trick in most cases but knowing what to use where is valuable. If your child is living in a dorm with a community restroom, this won’t be an issue yet, but knowing how to unclog a toilet with a plunger is crucial. Before your kid flies the coop, teach them some basic cleaning skills. Their roommate(s) will thank you for it! How to iron is another useful household skill that will be needed at some point by your teen. Taking the time to show proper ironing techniques, which heat setting to use and ways to not burn themselves or their clothes are tips your teen will use forever. 9. writing a proFeSSional email Your child will need to know how to write a proper email to their professor or the person they are seeking a job from once they go to college. The email should be clear, concise and to the point. It doesn’t need to include emojis or unprofessional slang terms. 10. making wiSe deCiSionS Making wise decisions is not a life skill only for teens but for people of any age. Trusting your instincts is a skill that will carry your teen far in his life. As a teen in high school or heading to college, there will be many instances when they will have to make a quick decision that could be life altering. Guiding your teen with the values he has learned thus far will help that decision to be the correct one, at least the majority of the time! These basic life skills, although they seem ordinary to us parental units, will definitely help your child navigate the real world in college or on their own. Good luck and Godspeed! Cammie Jones is an Augusta freelance writer and mother of three.

AugustA FAmily | september/OctOber 2019 • 21

raising readers Meredit h Flory

Podcasts with Family


was a little late to the podcast game. While audioblogging as entertainment has been around for a very long time, most sources agree that podcasting in its current form became popular in the mid-2000s due to smartphones. I, however, didn’t begin to listen to podcasts regularly until last year. My spouse was at work one day and I wanted some company as I cleaned the house. So, I decided to download some recommended podcasts on my iPad. I was hooked! Podcasts provide ways to learn more, think about ideas and hear from favorite personalities while navigating their days. One week this spring I was dealing with a sore throat and my kids wanted bedtime stories, so I decided to find a podcast to do the job for me. A thought quickly occurred to me — why not incorporate more podcasts into my regular time spent with the kids? So, I began to collect suggestions from different sources on family friendly podcasts, and I spent the better part of June listening to them. For this column, I focused on four specific criteria and found several quality podcasts that worked to encourage reading and educational activities at home. I want to share those with you in two parts. This month focuses on listening with your pre-teen or teen and next month I will focus on younger children. My guideline includes only those shows that are currently ongoing during this publication. I also decided to focus on podcasts that have stand-alone episodes rather than continuing stories. Even though some families may enjoy the nostalgic feel of ongoing radio dramas— and there are many quality ones out there — the stand-alone episodes allow listeners to jump in with ease as time and circumstances allow. Additonally, everything on these lists is “family friendly” meaning that I did not find any explicit content during the segments I heard. I avoided shows that deal regularly with religion or politics as I wanted to focus on topics that all my readers could enjoy. However, this does not mean that all would be appropriate for your family or children. For several, specifically the teen ones, I would encourage you to read the descriptions and listen to them ahead of time. Lastly, I have listed podcasts that are free and available on major podcasts apps.

to come by, and I tried several that were too gruesome for me to suggest. I did, however, come across two that would work for a family. First, Aaron Mahnke’s Lore is a fascinating look at how “sometimes truth is more frightening than fiction” with historical accounts of the supernatural, weird creatures, villainous mysteries and more. Additionally, The Oddcast: Tales of the Occult, Weird, and Arcane is a collection of famous thrillers from authors such as Lovecraft, Wells, and Poe told with excellent narration, music and sound effects. BuiLding empaThy: When I first started listening to podcasts, I was thrilled to find I could listen to my favorite NPR shows like Snap Judgment and This American Life instead of hoping to catch them aired live in the car. While subjects vary, these shows each give warnings for sensitive content and their human interest stories are insightful. The podcast version of This American Life is marked explicit due to unfiltered language from many of the interviewees, but edited versions are available online. Many of the stories that uncover unique viewpoints, important Americana and examples of injustice may be worth the sensitive content for teens. Likewise, Snap Judgment weaves tales live or recorded depending on the episodes as they cross between heartbreaking and serious to funny and quirky content, and all are thought-provoking. converSaTion STarTerS: Still Buffering is a gem of a show that was suggested to me on social media. The show is a conversation between three sisters: Sydnee McElroy, Teylor Smirl and Rileigh Smirl. The McElroy family is responsible for several podcasts and other media, and here big sisters Sydnee and Teylor give advice to Rileigh and talk about the differences in teenage life between their respective generations. There are guest stars on occasion. Episodes are titled and themed by a “how-to” covering everything from the mundane of shopping malls to an episode on the awkwardness of “the talk” in health class, modeling positive conversations between family members.

Learning TogeTher: Stuff You Missed in History Class is now one of my evening favorites. It’s been a podcast production of How Stuff Works for a long time, with changes to the format and hosts. The two current hosts are delightful, and give any warnings if the material is sensitive, as they tell stories of lesser known historical figures and events. Episodes are roughly 25 minutes long. Topics range from whimsical histories, to sensitive retellings of disasters, to fascinating accounts of lesser known historical figures.

One of their guests in the past year is also the co-host of my final suggestion, the well-known YouTuber and author Hank Green. Along with his brother John, a prolific author of Young Adult fiction, this second set of siblings has been posting quality content since the fledgling days of internet fame. Their “dubious advice” show, Dear Hank and John, takes questions from fan emails and answers them with brotherly hijinks and hilarity. This would be a great way for a parent and teen to share a laugh in the car, and perhaps read together one of the brothers’ best-selling novels. Hank’s An Absolutely Remarkable Thing (2018) and John’s Turtles all the Way Down (2017) were two of my favorite YA reads last year.

Spooky and Scary: I was a kid that loved hiding under my comforter with a flashlight reading R.L. Stine, Christopher Pike and later Stephen King. While I no longer have quite the thirst for scary stories, from time to time I appreciate a good fright. Spooky podcasts that are appropriate for younger listeners are hard

Meredith Flory is a freelance writer, military spouse and mother of two. She has a Master degree in Children’s Literature from Kansas State University and has taught high school and college English.

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STORY STRONGER TOGETHER As a baby, Lucas was one who never ran out of energy. So when he got a fever, his mom, Danielle, didn’t worry too much. After all, it was flu season, and her then-sixyear-old was still running around like he always did. But then one week went by. His doctor checked, and sent him home with an antibiotic for an ear infection. Then another week of fever. Tests came back negative for the flu, and his doctor sent him home again. Then another week. By this time, Danielle was starting to worry. Her always-running 6-year-old was sleeping all the time, his fever was starting to spike and he would wake up in the middle of the night to throw up. Lucas was with Danielle at work one day when one of her co-workers asked, “Lucas, are you all right? You look a little yellow.” Without answers from her doctor, Danielle called her mother-in-law, Rhonda, a nurse at the downtown VA. “Come by and let me take a look at him,” she said. She took one look and said, “I think we need to take him across the street to the Children’s Hospital.” In the ER of the Children’s Hospital of Georgia, Danielle and Rhonda waited as doctor after doctor came into Lucas’ room. At one point, Rhonda got up to leave because she had to go to work early the next morning. But she came back with tears in her eyes, and a moment later, one of the doctors asked Danielle to step into another room.



He sat her down, and said quietly, “We think Lucas may have leukemia.” They are words that still make Danielle break down into tears. “I was in denial,” she said. “But they confirmed it the next day after they admitted us.” By this time, Danielle’s husband, Jerrett, had raced home from Myrtle Beach, where he had been working. Tears flowed again. “Jerrett is so sweet and kind, and Lucas is just like him,” said Danielle. “They’re thick as thieves, and he was just like, ‘That’s my kid. That’s my kid.’” And Lucas, her sweet, energetic child? “He just rolled with it,” said Danielle. “We talked to him, and for him, it was no big deal. He had this.” Ironically, the “good” news was that Lucas was diagnosed with B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia, which is the most common type of leukemia, with about 98 percent of children going into remission after just weeks of treatment, and 90 percent cured. With family to help care for the couple’s other children, Makayla, then 7, and Logan, then 2, Danielle and Jerrett were able to be with Lucas as he began his journey fighting cancer.


That first month, Lucas received chemotherapy at day 1, day 15, day 21 and day 29. A spinal tap to check his lymphoblasts—the abnormal cells that are leukemia—found that they were down, enough that his doctors could classify Lucas at standard risk. Lucas was officially in remission—but not that his journey was over. After that first month, he began eight months of intense chemotherapy, which entailed multiple spinal taps, weekly hospital visits with chemo administered via port, and a few hospital stays. Now, he’s in maintenance, which he will stay in until 2021, taking daily chemotherapy pills and coming into clinic for chemotherapy every month, too. Before the word cancer entered their lives, Danielle and Jerrett were living with their family in Illinois, two hours away from a children’s hospital. Today they are only 20 minutes away. “The staff at the Children’s Hospital of Georgia—the child life specialists; the great nurses; the amazing doctors; honestly anyone we come in contact with—they all listen, introduce us to other families going through this, and most of all, just make sure that Lucas is happy. That helps so much,” said Danielle. “Just having each other too—our whole family, together. That’s kept us strong.


s ’ n o s d u H STORY

HOW HUDSON BECAME CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL OF GEORGIA’S “MAN OF THE YEAR” It was just a lump on 4-year-old Hudson’s neck, no bigger than a dime. His doctor told his mom, Jennifer, not to worry about it. As a nurse, Jennifer didn’t like what she was seeing—especially since “it just stayed there. I could understand it being enlarged if he had a runny nose and cough and fever, but with no other symptoms, why?” Even as the lymph node grew bigger, Hudson’s doctor told her it was likely nothing. But nurses don’t quit—even more so when it’s something wrong with their four-year-old boy who chatters a mile a minute and whose favorite T-shirt sports the words, “’Sup, ladies?” Jennifer got her referral to Dr. Robyn Hatley, a pediatric surgeon at the Children’s Hospital of Georgia. It was just in time.


Over the weekend, Hudson’s lymph node swelled to the size of a ping-pong ball, and he got his first fever. That Monday, Dr. Hatley did a biopsy. The family already felt like they were friends with this gentle surgeon who is just as comfortable performing complex surgeries in the OR as he is plopping down next to Hudson to talk sports and share Paw Patrol stickers. “I could tell then he was concerned,” said Jennifer. “He had a long conversation with us about how it could be nothing, but it could be something. And he said that if it was, he’d call me and ask me to come in.” The call came on Wednesday. “He said, ‘OK, I’m going to be straight and tell you like it is. You need to come in now, we’re going to direct admit Hudson. He has cancer.’” Jennifer pauses for a moment. “That’s what I needed, for him to be straight with me, tell me what it was, then do something about it.”


Tests revealed that Hudson had T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia. That night, Jennifer, her husband, Brandon, and Hudson met Dr. Colleen McDonough, the pediatric oncologist who would put Hudson on a plan. After doctors put in a picc line, Hudson would start on five days of chemo, then six to eight months of intense chemotherapy treatment where he would need to come in every week, followed by maintenance therapy for three years. “I had a few moments,” said Jennifer, whose family also includes 7-year-old daughter Tenley. “We all did. But you know, you try to remember there’s a plan. I’m strong in my faith and I try to think that He’s got a plan, even if I don’t know what it is.” Hudson’s been in treatment now since December 2018. His

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blonde hair is gone, but the exuberant little boy is just the same as he always has been. Which is a blessing. “We’re doing good. Tenley, we try to keep everything as normal as possible for her,” said Jennifer. “Brandon shut down in the beginning, but right now he’s doing good too. We hope it continues as well as it has and that we can keep him at home as much as possible.” Hudson’s nickname at the pediatric cancer clinic is “Man of the Year.” “It’s because they love him so much and he’s so outgoing,” said Jennifer with a laugh. “He loves to squire the nurses with the flushes that they use to flush the port, and he offers them bites of his chicken nuggets because he thinks they’re hungry. “We’re happy,” she added. “He couldn’t be doing any better. And we’ll take our good times while we’re having them.”

Special advertiSing Section

Special advertiSing Section

AugustA FAmily | september/OctOber 2019 • 27

inspiration station Me re di t h Fl o ry

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inspiration station

Angela Marshall:

The Rags to Riches Motivator


uthor Angela Marshall is an Augusta native using her unique experiences as a teen mother, ex-NFL wife and businesswoman to inspire adults and youth through writing and speaking. Several years ago the author left the corporate world to pursue a passion for telling stories and mentoring others, and her influence is being felt in our community and beyond. When asked about the courage to change her career course, she reflected on the impact of her mother’s cervical cancer diagnosis and eventual passing: “I watched her transition from living a life of fulfillment and freedom to one that deteriorated in a matter of a year and a half. Before her death, we were allowed one final conversation that gave me the courage, audacity and faith to pursue what is become a reality in my life— I went from being a spectator to a motivator.” While Angela is now known as “Author Stone”, the seeds of becoming an author were planted much earlier in Marshall’s life. She remembers her fourth grade teacher Mrs. Susie Smith who provided the young student with creative writing opportunities at Monte Sano Elementary School. These writing experiences inspired her to start journaling. She explains, “every book I have published is a result of words, emotions and situations I captured over the years.” Marshall shares her experiences in her book Reality to Rags to Riches: The Story and Life of an Ex-NFL Wife at speaking engagements where she uses those stories to “encourage and empower attendees to live vicariously through yourself, convert downs in life to wins, and turn stumbling blocks into stepping stones.” In addition to promoting her book worldwide and participating in speaking engagements for adults,

she has a youth program entitled L.E.A.D. (Listen, Education, Ambition and Determination) that teaches children ages 6-17 how to be leaders. One lesson focuses on key ways to combat bullying. The author has learned to spy the exact moment when her presentations connect with participants as she cites the time a few children delivered drawings saying “they were going to try their best with the pledge against being a bully.” While Marshall travels globally to promote her books and platform, she is very active in the Augusta community spending time with friends and family and giving back to local programs. One of those partnerships is with the Richmond County Marshal’s Department which allows her “to interact and plant seeds into our youth.” For parents and readers of Augusta Family Magazine, she encourages each person to “live free, live full, live fueled and live filled”, by defining the blank space of what that means individually. Author Stone admits, “living free means I’m no longer in bondage to society standards and pressure. Living fueled means meditating, praying and growing spiritually. Living filled means family first and family always. Living full means to live each day with a purpose, pen and prayer. Always have a non-negotiable reason to wake up, memories and goals to record that you don’t want to erase, and an honest conversation with the phenomenal, unique and dynamic reflection in your mirror.” For More Information, please check out Angela Marshall’s website: Meredith Flory is a freelance writer, military spouse and mother of two. She has a Master degree in Children’s Literature from Kansas State University and has taught high school and college English.

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ou may not feel like you have much influence on your child these days but think again! I have discovered that most parents instinctively know the answer to a bulk of the questions but are bombarded with mixed messages on how to do it right. They just need validation of their instincts amidst all the social media rantings on parenthood. As you prepare yourself and your child emotionally and mentally for the young adult years, it will suddenly seem as if the entire world is caving in on your shoulders. Your teen is sure to be exposed to some overpowering external and internal struggles. Such changes will include hormonal adjustments, puberty, social and parental forces, work and school pressures— just to name a few. Adolescence is a time of growth and learning, and kids have the right to get it wrong as many times as it takes. As they navigate their way from childhood to adolescence they will certainly wobble, fall and rise. This is indeed a big learning adventure with lots of teachable moments. Your teenager will clearly need your love and support more than ever, but more so on their terms. The fact of the matter is... with adolescence things start to change. Some mourn it. Some rejoice it. Either way, it is the start of a new era.


Keep in mind, however, that unconditional love doesn’t mean unWe might wonder whether to hold on tighter or simply to conditional approval. Teens tend to live up or down to parental stand back. The answer is, we do both. We are parents. We expectations, so always set your expectations high. Instead of foare human. It’s what this parent thing is all about. It stirs the cusing on achievements, such as getting straight A’s, expect your fears and anxieties in us like nothing else. But it also give us the teen to be kind, considerate, respectful, honest and generous. strength and courage to do things we never thought we could— When it comes to day-to-day accomplishments, remember that like standing back far enough to let our children fall so they can teens gain confidence through small successes, which can prepare learn to walk, and eventually fly, but remaining close enough them for the next challenge. to reach them when they need us. Some days you will wonder We all strive to be the best parent to our kids. Therefore, it’s if aliens have abducted your 14-year-old teen and replaced his essential during the teen years that parents remain their children’s brain with someone else’s. While other days you will simply emotional and moral compass. What we need is a paradigm shift envision these crazy hormones as moody body-snatchers, makof teens who are a brighter view of us as parents. Provided being your kid do and say strange things. Knowing your teenager low are a few helpful suggestions that may serve as a roadmap is crossing a temporary, yet mandatory threshold may allow through these challenging years. you to refrain from speaking harshly in the moment and remember not to take his behavior too seriously. • Set Reasonable Expectations. Teens tend to live up or At the end of the day, one of the best things we can do for down to parental expectations. When establishing your expecour teen is to remain steady and keep the communication chantations, keep your standards high. Your teen nels open for times when it is needed. And wants to be his or her best self. Our job as if you are willing to embrace the challenges, At the end of the parents is to support our teens in doing that. empathize every now and then and prepare to Discuss what behavior is acceptable and unacbe patient and discreet, your job is half done. dAy, one of the ceptable at home, at school and elsewhere. CreEvery generation of teens is shaped by the sobest things we ate fair and appropriate consequences for how cial, political, and economic events of the day. your teen behaves. When setting consequencToday’s generation is no different. Their lives cAn do for our es, avoid ultimatums. Be clear and concise, exare undoubtedly saturated by mobile techteen is to remAin plain your decisions, and avoid any rules that nology, social media and the need for positive your teen can’t possibly follow. For example, peer relationships. And although teens these steAdy And keep set specific curfews, keep your rules short and days experience different difficulties than the communicAto the point and make consequences immediprevious generations, they are growing up in ate and linked directly to your teen’s choices or vastly diverse worlds and face problems that tion chAnnels actions. Your children are not puppets and you are unique to each individual. open for times are not a puppeteer. There is no way possible One of the most important tasks facing teens is to find their place in society, while bewhen it is needed. you can control every move your child makes or everything your child says, especially outside ing recognized by peers and accepted for who of your home. Children have their own free will they are. Navigating this juncture brings anxiand will act on their own accord— and often in self-interest. ety and insecurity to most. They begin to rebel against their parents, take on calculated risks, and form their own judgments about the • Watch What You Say. Being mindful of what we say world and everyone around them. Teens today are forced to live at a when we are frustrated, angry or tired. Hurt goes a long way. very superficial level, on the edge of society with no acceptance and Moms may have eyes in the back of their heads, but teenagvery little encouraging support. What’s more, they are expected to ers have ears everywhere, even if they pretend they didn’t identify with the internet, Facebook and television, where there is hear you. Our words truly set the tone and atmosphere of little emphasis on moral value or personal accomplishment. What our household. If we are continually complaining about our a confusing paradox is the life of a teenager today! teenager, saying snide remarks about how they cleaned up, or Of all the people, parents are the most important/influential using bitter sarcasm, we are setting up our relationship with when it comes to building self-confidence in teenagers. Your acour teen to fail. Be diligent to watch what you say so your tions speak louder than your words. What’s needed more than relationship can start out on the right foot every day. anything else during this critical phase in their lives is that you do what you can to spend quality time with your teen to show him or • Set a Positive Example. Parents spend a lot of time with her that you care. They need to see us present, hear us cheering teens and influence them through their actions and words. them on, and most importantly, they need to know that we love Teenagers learn skills such as nurturing, socializing and decithem unconditionally no matter how many mistakes they make.

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sion making through observation and communication with parents. The relationship usually influences their outcomes in life. Show your teen how to cope with stress in positive ways and be resilient. Listen to your teen when he or she talks and respect his or her feelings. Supporting passions and encouraging explorations will help identify your teen’s unique voice.

tions aside and to parent as objectively as possible. •

Stay connected. Build lines of communication that are so strong that your children always look to you as allies instead of enemies. It’s critical during the teen years for parents to remain their children’s emotional and moral compass. Communicate positively and avoid commands and “I-told-youso” remarks. Let them know that you don’t always have all the answers and you are not always right. Listen to their opinions and offer help whenever needed. Spend time with your teen to show him or her that you care. Listen to your teen when he or she talks and respect your teen’s feelings. The teen years often are a time of experimentation. And sometimes that experimentation includes risky behaviors. Don’t avoid the subjects of sex and drugs, alcohol or tobacco use. We can’t always control our kids, but we can influence them by the limits we set and the consequences we give. As the old saying goes, “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink”— but our you can make him thirsty.

Know the Warning Signs. A certain amount of change is normal during the teen years. But a drastic or long-lasting switch in personality or behavior may signal real trouble, the kind that needs professional help. Look out for signs of stress, anxiety, lack of concentration, poor eating habits, poor oral and personal hygiene, sudden change in friends, failing grades, talks or even jokes about suicide, signs of tobacco, alcohol, or drug use, run-ins with the law, disturbances in sleep and plummeting of interest in social activities. Any other inappropriate behavior that lasts for more than six weeks can be a sign of underlying trouble. Your doctor or a local counselor, psychologist or psychiatrist As can help you find proper counseling.

As our adolescents maneuver their way Truth, Honesty, & Grace. I am mAneuver from childhood to adolescence there will be much more truth-oriented in my martimes of triumph and failure. They will be riage than my husband tends to be. I have their wAy from driven to find their independence from us, a strong sense of what needs to be done childhood to not disconnection from us. Sometimes they and will always perform tasks with high will defy us, disagree with us, ignore us and standards. I’m not afraid to speak diAdolescence resent us. As hard as it seems, this isn’t who rectly about my expectations, especially there will they are, but rather it’s all about what adoleswhen they aren’t being met. My husband cence is. It may feel awful sometimes, but we is graceful. He forgives easily and allows be times of don’t need to change it and we don’t need to for leeway when the situation calls for it. triumph And control it. We couldn’t even if we wanted to. I vividly recall the positive and enduring In the meantime, relax, you’ll cross through it. fAilure. relationship that my daughter and husClearly, none of the fighting, the pushing, the band had during her teenage years that resentment, the defiance and the struggles will continues to flourish even today. With ever change how much they love you and need you. And over time, teenagers, both need to be present. Strong boundaries need the seeds you plant will begin to grow into something truly wonto remain in place with consequences clearly understood by derful. Our ultimate duty as parents is to prepare our children to all. Teens desperately need truth, honesty and grace in order face the big bad world without us through the plumb lines of comto thrive and stretch their wings. Be truthful enough to set munication and gentle influence. And should you ever find yourself reasonable boundaries with your teen, honest enough to acat wits’ ends, refer to the tips provided above or simply repeat the cept the consequences and graceful enough to thank, apprecifamous motto of many parents with teens: We’re going through ate, and love them at every possible occasion. this together, and we’ll come out of it – together. Good luck! Respect Kids’ Privacy. Some parents, understandably, have a very hard time with this one. But that’s okay. It’s part Dr. Dana Harris is a former Richmond County pubof our job description as a parent and head of the household. lic school educator, elementary school teacher, proYou do not make decisions based on what your kids will like, fessional staff development consultant & principal. tolerate or be okay with. Instead, you make the decisions She is currently a public speaker & freelance writer. She has dedicated more than 37 professional years that are best for them and your family, then follow through. in the educational arena and is currently retired, a Just consider yourself the chief executive officer of your wife of 41 years, a mother and grandmother of two ‘family business.’ As CEO you must learn how to set emo-


beautiful grandkids, London & Bryce.

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C ollege Queue

By Dustin Turner • Illustration by Michael Rushbrook


ur daughter, Abigail, is going to college. There’s no doubt about that. In fact, we tell her often. “Abigail, you’re going to college,” we say. Oh, she’s not going in the fall. Or for several more falls. Abigail is only 12 and still has to suffer the awkwardness of middle school and emotional roller coaster called high school. She has a lot of growing up to do. And we, her parents, have a lot of plans to put into motion. You see, the transition from Mommy and Daddy’s little girl to college student doesn’t start her senior year. It started the minute she was born. We think about it every time we see a commercial for a university or read news about scary things happening on college campuses. We’ve thought about it since her birth, and we worry about it now. Our biggest concern, of course, is her safety. We just watched a show on A&E Network’s History that featured a monstrous, armored, bullet-proof four-wheel-drive SUV with push-button smoke screen and all kinds of safety and defensive features. My wife, Jamie, and I looked at each other and said in unison: “Abigail’s college car!” So now we need to save for the six-figure price tag. We’re also certain that Kevlar body armor will be in high fashion in 2026. Our daughter is athletic and fierce, smart and observant. She also can hit a tiny, moving clay target with a shotgun, so we know she will take care of herself, which alleviates some concern. We worry, too, about paying for college. We’ve started saving money, of course, but college is expensive! As in buya-new-house-and-a-few-cars expensive. Surely, Abigail’s excellent grades will translate into scholarships. If not, perhaps by then there will be collegiate Fortnite leagues, in which case she surely will earn a full ride at her choice of Ivy League establishments. All good parents want their children to succeed, and we certainly want her to do better than we ever did. Don’t get me wrong, we are extremely happy with our middle-class existence, but as her parents, we want her to go far. Make lots of money. Live in a big house. Drive any car she wants and wear any brand clothing she wants. Most important, though, take

care of Mom and Dad. We need a retirement plan, after all. In all seriousness, we just want her to be happy and to succeed at whatever she puts her mind to. Sometimes she wants to be a professional artist. Sometimes she wants to be a veterinarian. Or both. There was the time she thought it would be lucrative to work at Chick-fil-A. “Why would you want to work in fast food as a career?” I asked. “Chick-fil-A is always busy,” she said. “Those people must make A LOT of money!” Those were some pretty astute observational and logical skills for a 5-year-old. On a serious note, any teenager needs emotional maturity and a sense of responsibility before going to college. College is definitely for young adults, not children. As every new college student does, our daughter will face choices every day. Go to class or hang out with friends? Study for finals or go to the big party? Drink or stay sober? If she does drink, drive or order an Uber? The correct answers, of course, are go to class, study, stay sober, get an Uber. As an adult with a college degree, however, I know that’s not always the reality. It’s enough to make my head spin and my heart palpitate. Even if she’s 18 and has been a huge success in high school, Jamie and I cannot – and will not – send a child off to college. So, to make these years of transition as easy as possible on our sanity, we will do everything possible to teach her to make good decisions, to take care of herself and her friends, to be responsible (and accountable), to understand consequences and to always live her best life. Still, though, we haven’t ruled out the armored SUV and designer Kevlar body armor.

Dustin Turner is the Communications and Content Manager for Alison South Marketing Group. He lives in Aiken with his amazing, beautiful and very patient wife of 22 years, Jamie, and their artistic, sassy and fierce daughter, Abigail, 12. Dustin enjoys writing, shooting and editing video and acting and directing in community theatre.

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Thursday, October 10th Millbrook Baptist Church Aiken, SC Visit for tickets and information

WHAT ARE YOUR FAMILY FAVORITES IN AUGUSTA’S RIVER REGION? We polled readers, tallied the votes and have come up with a list of favorite restaurants, medical professionals, retailers and more. So, without further adieu, here are our 2019 winners…

BURGERS Farmhaus Burger takes first place as the area’s favorite burger and with seven “Haus” burgers or an option to build your own burger, we can see why!


Desserts 1. Boll Weevil 2. French Market Grille 3. Manuel’s Bread Café Date Night 1. Frog Hollow 2. Craft & Vine 3. Tie: Calvert’s and Abel Brown Restaurant– Chain 1. Chick-fil-A 2. Bonefish Grill 3. Diablo’s Southwest Grill

Pizza With it’s authentic, highquality pizza, Mellow Mushroom is the easy choice for pizza that’s out of this world.

Restaurant– Locally-owned 1. Frog Hollow 2. Beck’s 3. Abel Brown Fries 1. Farmhaus 2. McDonald’s 3. Chick-fil-A Pizza 1. Mellow Mushroom 2. Pizza Joint 3. Marco’s Chicken Fingers 1. Wifesaver 2. Zaxby’s 3. Chick-fil-A Mac & Cheese 1. Wifesaver 2. Frog Hollow 3. Panera Bread

Jazz/Hip Hop Dance 1. Pulse Dance 2. Augusta West 3. Cutno Ballet 1. Colton Ballet 2. Columbia County Ballet 3. Augusta West Music Lessons 1. Tara Scheyer 2. Augusta Prep Conservatory 3. Portman’s Music Performing Arts Group 1. Augusta Players 2. Augusta Symphony 3. Storyland Theatre Annual Family Event 1. Arts in the Heart 2. Thunder Over Evans 3. (Augusta) Symphony Under the Stars Day Trip 1. Riverbanks Zoo 2. Columbia, SC 3. Clarks Hill Lake Family Photographer 1. Amy J. Owen

2. Carter Koenig 3. Natalie Thompson Photography

Healthy Menu 1. Southern Salad 2. Zoe’s Kitchen 3. Humanitree

Indoor Playground 1. The Playhouse 2. Defy (formerly known as Airstrike) 3. Chick-fil-A

Ice Cream 1. Bruster’s 2. Pink Dipper 3. Coldstone Creamery

Museum 1. Morris Museum 2. Augusta Museum of History 3. Imagination Station

Kid’s Menu 1. Chick-fil-A 2. Cracker Barrel 3. Red Robin

Outdoor Playground 1. Evans Towne Center Park 2. Covenant Presbyterian 3. Columbia County Library

Auto Service 1. Butler Automotive 2. Smith Chevron 3. C&C Automotive

Rainy Day Outing 1. The Movies 2. Stars & Strikes 3. Artsy Me

Bank/Credit Union 1. SRP Federal Credit Union 2. Wells Fargo 3. Queensborough National Bank and Trust Company

Breakfast 1. Sunrise Grille 2. Waffle House 3. Metro Diner

Computer Repair 1. Computer Exchange 2. JayWil Computer Resolutions 3. Computer One

Burgers 1. Farmhaus Burger 2. Five Guys 3. Whiskey Bar

Veterinarian 1. Highland Animal Hospital 2. Acute Care Veterinary Clinic 3. Care More Animal Hospital

38 • AugustA FAmily | september/OctOber 2019

swimming Lessons Readers flipped for swim lessons at Dolphin Swim Academy. Dog Groomer 1. D’Tails Pet Grooming 2. Grateful Paws 3. Woof Gang Bakery and Grooming

Place for Boys’ Birthday Parties 1. Defy (formerly known as Airstrike) 2. Putt Putt 3. The Playhouse

Consignment Shop 1. Kid to Kid 2. Uptown Cheapskate 3. Encore Consignments

Kennel 1. Suggs 2. D’Tails 3. Paradise

Place for Girls’ Birthday Parties 1. Artsy Me 2. Tiaras and Pearls 3. The Playhouse

Grocery Store 1. Publix 2. Kroger 3. Fresh Market

Pediatrician 1. Pediatric Partners of Augusta 2. Dr. Doug Nesbit 3. Augusta Pediatric Associates

Birthday Cakes 1. Publix 2. A Piece of Cake 3. Nothing Bundt Cakes

Children/Teen Sports Program 1. Family Y 2. Arsenal Soccer 3. Columbia County Rec Dept.

Pediatric Dentist 1. Dr. Lee Baker– Center for Pediatric Dentistry 2. Dr. John W. Spratling– Pediatric Dental Specialists 3. Southern Smiles

Daycare 1. Woodlawn United Methodist 2. Wheeler Pines 3. Appletree Academy

Family Sporting Event 1. Augusta Greenjackets 2. Nike Peach Jam 3. Atlanta Braves

Elementary School 1. Augusta Preparatory Day School 2. Westminster Schools of Augusta 3. Episcopal Day School

Gymnastics/Cheer Instruction 1. Gymnastics Gold 2. Hayden’s 3. C&C Gymnastics

Middle School 1. Augusta Preparatory Day School 2. Westminster Schools of Augusta 3. Episcopal Day School

Martial Arts Program 1. Seigler’s Karate School 2. Premier Martial Arts 3. ATA Martial Arts

High School 1. Augusta Preparatory Day School 2. Westminster Schools of Augusta 3. Aquinas High School

Swimming Lessons 1. Dolphin Academy 2. Family Y 3. Neptune Dive & Ski

Tutoring Service 1. Mathnasium 2. Sylvan Learning Center 3. Mae’s Tutoring

Tennis Program 1. Newman Tennis Center 2. Petersburg Racquet Club 3. Westlake Country Club

Car Dealer 1. Milton Ruben 2. Jim Hudson Lexus 3. Master GMC

Family Fitness Center 1. Family Y 2. Evans Fitness Center 3. Kroc Center

Orthodontist 1. Rogers & Andrews Orthodontics 2. Trotter Orthodontics 3. Powell Orthodontics Ob/Gyn 1. Dr. Michel McDonough 2. Dr. Allan Joseph 3. Dr. Kathy Chance After Hours Medical Care 1. Urgent MD 2. MedNow Urgent Care 3. University Prompt Care Family Vision Care 1. Broome Family Eye Care 2. Eye Physicians and Surgeons of Augusta 3. Casella Eye Center Local Radio Station 1. 88.3 WAFJ 2. Kicks 99 3. 104.3 WBBQ Local TV Station: 1. WJBF 2. WRDW 3. WFXG Local Website 1. 2. 3. Favorite Part of Augusta Family 1. ALL of it! 2. Calendar 3. Summer Camp Guide

Baby Clothes 1. Posh Tots 2. Kid to Kid 3. Carter’s Boy’s Clothes 1. Kid to Kid 2. Posh Tots 3. Target Girl’s Clothes 1. Kid to Kid 2. Posh Tots 3. Carter’s/Osh Kosh

Birthday Cakes Publix takes the cake as the favorite for birthday cakes.

40 • AugustA FAmily | sEPtEmBER/OCtOBER 2019

calendar September/october 2019

ArtS in the heArt September 20-22: Arts in the Heart of Augusta is a 2 ½ day celebration of the arts in downtown Augusta which highlights live music, ethnic foods, diverse cultures, dance performances, and local vendors. There are over 88,000 visitors annually. The venue houses 5 performance stages, food trucks representing cuisine from over 20 countries, and fine arts and crafts booths. It is a fun festival for families and out of town guests. For more info: Downtown Augusta

Photo coourtesy of Arts in the Heart of Augusta

Friday: 5 – 9pm Saturday: 11am – 9pm Sunday: 12pm – 7pm

We’d love to hear from you. If you have an event you’d like to add to our next issue, send an email to aimee.

AugustA FAmily | sEPtEmBER/OCtOBER 2019 • 41

42 • AugustA FAmily | sEPtEmBER/OCtOBER 2019

brOthers in blue bash OctOber 26. The PBA of Georgia Augusta’s River Region Chapter is hosting the largest law enforcement event in the Southern States. All you can eat Southern BBQ Buffet featuring smoked chicken, pulled pork, smoked corn, pineapple jalapeno coleslaw, cornbread and much more with all the beer, wine and soft drinks included in your ticket.

Photo by Andrew Itaga on Unsplash

7 – 11pm Columbia County Exhibition Center 212 Partnership Drive, Grovetown

RecuRRing weekly on SatuRdayS the augusta Market at the River 8am – 2pm Riverwalk, 8th Street Plaza

SepteMbeR 7 grovetown Market 9am – 1pm Goodale Park, 5207 Wrightsboro Rd

RecuRRing weekly, SundayS candlelight Music Series 7:30 – 10:30pm Augusta Common, 836 Reynolds Street Beginning in May and continuing through September, Augusta hosts the Candlelight Music Series at the Augusta Common, located in downtown Augusta, with live music from different genres.

SepteMbeR 8 youtubers plus tour: Back To School Edition 4:30pm Miller Theater Visit for more details.

SepteMbeR 6 First Friday at augusta common 6 – 10pm Augusta Common, 836 Reynolds Street

SepteMbeR 13 Morris Museum of art presents the earls of leicester with twisted pine 7:30pm Imperial Theatre Visit for more information.

SEpTEmBEr 13-14 It’s a Green Thing Festival Western Carolina State Fairgrounds Aiken, SC The Augusta River Region’s First Annual Celebration of Sustainability!

SEpTEmBEr 14 4th Annual CSrA Food Truck Festival 12 – 6pm Augusta Common Kids 12 years and younger are free. General Admission tickets can be purchased at

SepteMbeR 19 gary allen 7:30pm, doors open 6:30pm The Bell Auditorium Visit

AugustA FAmily | sEPtEmBER/OCtOBER 2019 • 43

Art of ChoColAte September 28. The DoubleTree Hilton Hotel, Augusta Child Enrichment’s Fall Fundraiser. Chocolate decadence from local chefs and caterers. Live music and silent auction. 7 – 11pm. $80/person. Call: 706-737-4631.

September 21 Aiken Oktoberfest 2019 6 – 10pm The 7th Annual Aiken Oktoberfest. Festive German attire, authentic German beer and food, and the Foothills Oompah Band!

September 20-22 ArtS IN tHe HeArt of Augusta Festival Friday: 5 – 9pm Saturday: 11am – 9pm Sunday: 12 – 7pm Downtown Augusta ARTS IN THE HEART of Augusta is a 2 ½ day celebration of the arts in downtown Augusta which highlights live music, ethnic foods, diverse cultures, dance performances, and local vendors. There are more than 88,000 visitors annually. The venue houses five performance stages, food trucks representing cuisine from more than 20 countries, and fine arts and crafts booths. For more info:

September 27-28 Fall Festival and Flea market— Fort Gordon Festival: Friday 5 – 11pm Saturday 9 – 11am Flea Market: Saturday 9am – 2pm Barton Field, Brainard Ave. and Rice Rd. For more information, call 706-791-8878.

Photo by Heather Barnes on Unsplash

September 27 ragtime Augusta Players Musical 8pm Imperial Theatre Visit

44 • AugustA FAmily | sEPtEmBER/OCtOBER 2019

September 28 Adventure Fest 2019 1 – 10pm Adventure Kids Daycare Center 4350 Wheeler Rd

Free go karts, mini golf, games, raffles and more! Visit adventure-fest.

September 28 Art of Chocolate 7 – 11pm The DoubleTree Hilton Hotel, Augusta Child Enrichment’s Fall Fundraiser. Chocolate decadence from local chefs and caterers. Live music and silent auction. $80/person. Call: 706-737-4631.

OCTOBER OCtOber 2-NOvember 20 Wacky Wednesday Story time Wednesdays 10 – 10:45am Barnes and Noble Augusta Mall

OctOber 4 I’m with the band: Fundraiser for the burn Foundation of America Doors open 6:30; starts 7:30pm Miller Theater Visit for more information.

OctOber 4 paint me pretty party 6:30 – 8pm Hilltop Riding Stable, Fort Gordon Space is limited; pre-register by October 2. Participants 21 and over are allowed to bring their favorite wine or beer. Visit OctOber 5 20th Annual pOp Walk for people of parkinson’s Fundraiser Registration 9am Walk starts at 10am First Baptist Church, 3500 Walton Way Ext. Free t-shirt with $25 donation while supplies last. For more information, call 706-364-1662.


Photo coourtesy of

OCTOBER 2-6. This multiple day, multiple arts, and multiple venue festival last 5 days and has a vision to enrich the “cultural fabric” of the community. From spoken word poets, to jazz, bluegrass and alternative musicians to the visual arts, Westobou is a festival for the connoisseur of everything artistic and edgy. For more info, visit www.westoboufestival. com for individual event schedules and pricing.

OCTOBER 6 Swanee Quintet 4:30pm The Bell Auditorium Visit

OCTOBER 10-11 Appalachian Road Show and Darrell Scott 7:30 – 9pm Imperial Theatre Visit for more information.

OCTOBER 13 Audra McDonald 4pm Miller Theater Visit for more information.

OCTOBER 15 ZZ Top 50th Anniversary Tour with Guest Cheap Trick 7pm James Brown Arena Visit OCTOBER 18 The Queen’s Cartoonists 7:30 – 9:30pm Imperial Theater

Visit The Queen’s Cartoonists play music from classic cartoons and contemporary animation.

OCTOBER 18-27 Georgia Carolina State Fair Mon – Fri: opens at 5pm Sat – Sun: opens at 12 noon 308 Hale Street

OCTOBER 25 Grovetown Autumn Festival 6 – 9pm Liberty Park, 1040 Newmantown Rd Free even

OCTOBER 17-20 Aiken City Limits Music Festival Mimosa Crawl October 19 11am – 2pm Highfields Event Center Contact Highfields at 803-649-3505 or visit to see a full list of events.

OCTOBER 19 The Miracle Mile Walk Pre-walk program 8am Walk starts at 9am Post Walk Celebration and Raffle at 10am Augusta Common

OCTOBER 19 Buddy Walk, Aiken Registration 9am; walk starts at 10:30am University of South Carolina Aiken Campus.

OCTOBER 22 Andrew Sords Violin, and Daniel Overly Piano Tuesdays Music Live 12 – 1pm St. Paul’s Church, downtown

OCTOBER 25 Chris Young— Raised On Country Tour Doors open 6:30; starts 7:30pm James Brown Arena Visit

OCTOBER 26 Brothers in Blue Bash 7 – 11pm Columbia County Exhibition Center 212 Partnership Drive, Grovetown The PBA of Georgia Augusta’s River Region Chapter is hosting the largest law enforcement event in the Southern States. All you can eat Southern BBQ Buffet featuring smoked chicken, pulled pork, smoked corn, pineapple jalapeno coleslaw, cornbread and much more with all the beer, wine and soft drinks included in your ticket.


generation Talkin’ abouT my

Three residents representing three age groups share their reflections on family, life and fun.

Sam Hatcher, 17, a senior at Augusta Christian Schools plays Varsity football and soccer and is a member of the Beta Club. Hatcher is also on Team Chenzhou, a volunteer mission group to Chinese orphanages. If you could have any job, what would you choose? Author If you had a super power, what would it be? Telekinesis Whom do you admire the most? My older sister Julia

Kaitlyn Frits, 29, is a Design Assistant at

Maria Cephas, 60, is a volunteer

Merit Flooring, Kitchen and Bath.

Sunday school teacher of over 100 people each

One word you would use to describe yourself: Empathetic If you could have any job, what would you choose? That’s a tie! I’d choose to be a travel blogger or run a bed and breakfast on a farm What would surprise people about you? I enjoy

Yorkie mix) Gye. One word you would use to describe yourself: Tenacious What quality do you most admire? Kindness Is there an important life lesson you’ve

minor league baseball games

learned? Honesty really is the best policy

Favorite indulgence? My dad’s homemade Oreo

Favorite indulgence? Black Walnut ice cream

ice cream

What are you reading right now? “Think Like a

Favorite college football team: Georgia

What inspires you? Results from hard work

in Augusta with her 7-year old Shorkie (Shih Tzu

going to rodeos, skeet shooting and attending

Favorite subject in school? AP Psychology


Sunday at Beulah Grove Baptist Church. She lives

Biggest fear: My faith is stronger than my fears What inspires you? Animals, because they

Dream vacation: Road tripping and camping

communicate without speaking and they are

along the Pacific Northwest

always loyal and loving

46 • AugustA FAmily | september/OctOber 2019

Profile for Augusta Family Magazine

Augusta Family Magazine September/October 2019  

Teen Issue A Portrait of Today's Teen Struggles Augusta Family Favorites 2019

Augusta Family Magazine September/October 2019  

Teen Issue A Portrait of Today's Teen Struggles Augusta Family Favorites 2019