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Lawrence Kids Spring 2012


KANSAS


FOOTBALL


Making your life

easier, healthier, happier. 3504 Clinton Parkway Lawrence, Kansas 785-832-0044

4000 West Sixth Street Lawrence, Kansas 785-832-9449


Lawrence Kids Spring, 2012

In Every Issue My Turn Viewpoint Health Season’s Readings How We Roll 5 Easy Steps How We Live To-Do List Seasonal Essentials

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11 12 18 21 22 28 59 62

Features Finger Lickin’ Good 27 This American Family 34 Unplug 42 The Bartender’s Wife 46 A Super Birthday Party 50

a product of Four Birds Media contributing photographers

Annie Werner annependleton.com Casey Wright caseywrightphotography.com Emmalee Schaumburg schaumburgphotography.com Tara Nelson taranelsonphotography.com

Amy Hall studioamy.com Tasha Keathley contact Four Birds Media (785) 766-5669 info@lawrencekidsmagazine.com cover photo: In Flight by Tasha Keathley


All better.

Sometimes those are the words we can’t wait to hear. And Family Medicine Associates can help you hear them even sooner. Along with our traditional appointment times, we offer same day service weekdays from 8am5pm, and 8am-noon on Saturdays. Or if you need a quick answer to a health concern, just call PAL, our Patient Answer Line, weekdays from 8am-5pm. PAL is staffed by experienced, registered nurses who can help you with questions or connect you with the right professional for your concerns. Family Medicine Associates is small enough to get to know you personally, and large enough to take care of every member of your family. We’ll be glad to make you all better as soon as possible.

• Traditional and Same Day Appointments • Board Certified in Family Medicine • PAL Hotline for Healthcare Questions • One Place for Your Entire Family

830-0100 • 4921 W. 18th Street

PAL 830-9990 Patient Answer Line

Get quick answers and accurate referrals to your health care concerns. PAL is staffed by nurses and best of all the service is free!

Loree J. C. Cordova, M.D. • Jean M Schrader, M.D. Dan Severa, M.D. • Stephanie Suber, D.O. Stacey Anderson, PA-C • Brianne Cook, PA-C Siler, PA-C • Britani Congleton, PA-C TaraJessi Zabawa, All Providers are Board Certified


my turn

Spring into the season! by Elizabeth Scarbrough

Spring is a time for joy and new discoveries. What I am looking forward to this spring is spending time with family and friends, seeing my older friends graduate and go into the world to do great things, getting outside with my dogs, and my birthday. Spending time with family and friends is an important thing to do to have a balanced life. Family is important and my family loves each other; Caroline my younger sister, Bretton my twin brother, Mom and Dad, and even our dogs Chowder and Benjamin. Some people in my school are leaving and of course I will miss them, but I will always remember them and they will be in my heart forever. Playing outside with my dogs is what I will do to stay active. Benjamin and Chowder are my dogs that love to play and explore. Benjamin was in a shelter his entire life until we adopted him this winter. He is such a cute, sweet, adorable dog. They both love to explore and I want to explore with them. (Hopefully, Benjamin will learn his name!) Spring is going to be fun having the amazing weather to play and get more exercise and more fresh air. Some of my friends at Bishop Seabury Academy are graduating and some are leaving. The people who are graduating are amazing and care about the younger students. There are people who are just awesome at this school. Bishop Seabury is a school of learning, new discovery, and making friends and new relationships. Love is something that I have for all the students and it will be hard to let them go become awesome people. I have to remind myself there are new students to come next year. I look forward to showing them what this school is all about. All of the teachers at Seabury care about the students so much, especially Dean Czarnecki, Ms. Galas, and Dr. Schawang. They all care how the students succeed in school and life. The spring is also awesome because I am a spring baby so I get to have my birthday! My birthday is May 12th. I have a twin brother so I have to share it, but that isn’t always a bad thing. I love my brother, even though all siblings can be annoying. I want only three things for my birthday and I hope I get them - a record player, an Etch-A-Sketch, and trying new foods. I love listening to the record player. I like record players because they have a more organic feel to me than an electronic device, like an iPod. I love Etch-A-Sketches because I like drawing with them and trying to make new shapes and pictures. I think they are more fun to draw with than markers, crayons, or paint. I also love new foods and trying them. Fruits and vegetables in the spring time are what I love to eat, especially on my birthday. Spring is my favorite time of the year! Elizabeth (11) is in sixth grade at Bishop Seabury Academy

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We’re Open!

New Pediatric Practice

Lawrence Pediatrics believes in complete preventive care and Dr. Kirsten Evans has lived in Lawrence since 1989. healingschool for children from birth to She completed medical and residency at The ageMedical 21. Center and has practiced University of Kansas

pediatrics in Topeka, Kansas City and Virginia, treating children of all ages withmission: a wide variety of illnesses. Dr. Our Evans has workedprovide in private practice, as faculty at The comprehensive pediatric KU Med Center and as a pediatric hospitalist at Storcare for your child’s lifelong mont Vail Health Care. Dr. Evans serves as adjunct fachealth. ulty for Saint Louis University and is president Welcome ofWelcome the to toour ournew newpractice. practice... ..open .opento toall! all! Welcome to our new practice. .open to all! Kansas Medical Education Foundation.

Dr. Kirsten Evans has lived in Lawrence since 1989. She Welcome to our new practice. . .open Kirsten Evans completed medical school and Kirsten E. Evans M.D.,to Ph. D., F.A.A.P.new practice. . .open Welcome our M.D., Ph.D., F.A.A.P. residency at The University of Kansas Medical Center, and has Welcome to our new practice. . .open ,, ,p.a. p.a.to all! p.a. practiced pediatrics in Topeka, Kansas City, and Virginia, treating children of all ages with a wide variety COMPREHENSIVE COMPREHENSIVE PEDIATRIC of illnesses. She has worked in private practice, as a faculty PEDIATRIC member at The COMPREHENSIVE PEDIATRIC , p.a. University of Kansas Medical Center,CARE and as aFOR pediatric hospitalist at CARE FOR YOUR YOUR CHILD CHILD , p.a. CARE FOR YOUR CHILD Stormont Vail Health Care. Dr. Evans also serves as adjunct faculty for COMPREHENSIVE Saint Louis University and is president of the Kansas Medical Education PEDIATR , p.a. PEDIATR COMPREHENSIVE Foundation. CARE FOR YOUR CHILD

Welcome to our new practice. . .open to a

Lawrence Lawrence Pediatrics Pediatrics Lawrence Lawrence Pediatrics Lawrence Pediatrics

Lawrence

Pediatrics, p.a. Pediatrics Lawrence COMPREHENSIVE PEDIATRIC

CARE FOR YOUR CHILD MONDAY MONDAY ---FRIDAY FRIDAY MONDAY FRIDAY COMPREHENSIVE PEDIATRIC 9:00 9:00 AM AM 5:00 5:00 PM PM 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM CARE FOR YOUR CHILD

MONDAY - FRIDAY 543 543 Lawrence Lawrence Ave Ave - FRIDAY 543 Lawrence Ave MONDAY 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM Suite SuiteD D Suite D 9:00 AM -, p.a. 5:00 PM MONDAY - FRIDAY 543 Lawrence Ave, Suite D, 543 Lawrence, KS 66049 Lawrence Ave 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM Suite D Ave 543 Lawrence 785-856-9090 www. LawrencePeds.com Suite D 785-856-9090 785-856-9090 785-856-9090 543 Lawrence Ave COMPREHENSIVE PEDIATRIC Suite D LawrencePeds.com www. www. LawrencePeds.com www. LawrencePeds.com

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viewpoint

Mud & Love: an affair with the season by Megan Stuke

Everyone looks forward to spring. Everyone. If you don’t look forward to spring, you hate kittens and puppies and the American flag. And there’s good reason for it; spring has a lot to offer. I mean, a lot. There’s March and its ensuing madness. There’s the crawling out of the basements and out from under comforters and into the back yard in short sleeves and possibly no socks. There’s a new crop of sports, comfortable strolls downtown, the onset of camping trips and open car windows. But the thing I look forward to most, the thing I really love about spring, is dirt. Sod, soil, mud and sand - spring, to me, is all about playing with the earth. All winter, the ground is either covered in snow, or frozen solid. The yards are places we avoid, preferring to slip into our houses through the garage and the outdoors - and the grassless ground - as much as possible. But at the first peep of spring, my thoughts go immediately to what’s beneath my feet. I want to walk on it with naked toes, get it underneath my fingernails, smell it, play in it, grow things in it. It’s no secret that housekeeping is not my forte. I am not a clean fanatic. I wouldn’t recommend eating off my kitchen floor

most days. But the one thing I do make an effort to keep clean is my carpet. I want to keep the dirt and mess outside and the carpet stain-free. I make my family take off their shoes when they come in my house. That carpet is NEW! But even the thought of mud tracks on my new white carpet doesn’t deter me from sending my toddler outside to make mudpies or play in the sandbox and get as filthy as his heart desires. Kids should be grubby. A grubby kid is a kid who has been outside, who has breathed fresh air, run around a yard, and examined the earth beneath his feet. A grubby kid, in my estimation, is a happy, healthy kid. My husband has put my garden boxes together already and my backyard vegetable patch is taking shape. Digging holes, sprinkling seeds, starting tomatoes and watering pots with my little son and then watching sprouts come out of the black soil is, to me, the quintessential spring activity. Spring is a time for mess. Pull out the play clothes, get out some shovels, and get your (and your kiddos’) hands (and feet and elbows and knees) dirty. It’s refreshing - as are the requisite baths you’ll all take at the end of the day. LK 11


health

All Things Good & Well by Dan Severa, MD and Britani Congleton, PA-C

Spring and Summer months generally mean more relaxed schedules for families. The strict timelines of school are replaced with summer camps and physical activities. This more relaxed environment is also enjoyed at your physician’s office. The crazy-busy days during winter’s cold and flu season are replaced with more pleasant and normal-paced days for your doctor. This makes summer the ideal time to schedule a well visit with your physician. Most people think of physician appointments for illness, but an enormous part of the Family Practice Physician’s responsibility is prevention of illness. Recognizing potential health problems and establishing a care plan for prevention is essential to the well being of every family member. There are multiple reasons why you should be selective when choosing where to take your child for an annual physical or a sports/camp physical.

What is the difference between a physical and a sports physical?

Well visits include a comprehensive review of systems and evaluation of total well-being. Depending on the age and health of the child, blood work, as well as other tests, may be necessary. A school physical for Kindergarten attendance, for example, will include updating immunizations and developmentally evaluating a child. It is also a great time to find out how your child is doing socially and if you have any concerns or questions.

During a well child physical physicians

• Review past medical history and family history, as well as current medications. • Complete a review of systems to identify any areas of health concerns or problems. • Perform a physical examination with special focus on patient concerns. • Order labs, x-rays or other tests as necessary. The well visit establishes where your child is physically and shapes the picture of your child’s health for future visits. Your physician may also recommend changes in diet or exercise habits based on examination. cont.

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Sunshine Acres Montessori School 2141 Maple Lane, Lawrence, KS 66046

785-842-2223

www.ssacres.org Helping Children Grow into Something Great! To assist a child we must provide him with an environment which will enable him to develop freely. - Maria Montessori

Rich Montessori environment geared to the child’s natural tendencies. The school operates as a non-profit, private school and participates in the state food program. Sunshine Acres serves 124 children ages 12 months to 12 years. Children play and learn on a large, well-equipped playground. Families can choose from a variety of schedules. Sunshine Acres is licensed by KDHE as a child care center, License No. 0061926

Four Star Rating

By the Kansas Quality Improvement System


Recommended dates for well child check up: • 3 to 5 days • 1 month • 2 months • 4 months • 6 months • 9 months • 12 months • 15 months • 18 months • 24 months • 3 years Once every year thereafter for an annual health visit that includes a physical exam, developmental, behavioral, and learning assessment. A sports physical focuses on a child’s readiness for the upcoming athletic activity. Physicians check for exercise induced problems such as asthma or migraines. Your child will be tested for lack of flexibility, which can lead to injury or tendonitis. Physicians evaluate the heart and check for arrhythmias which may require further work. Also, your family doctor will help your child and you understand the importance of good nutrition and hydration while excelling at their sport. Well physicals are an excellent opportunity for your child

to get to know their physician and establish a trusting professional relationship. This is also a good time for parents to ask questions about their child’s overall growth. Physicals are required for sports and school because they are important for the child’s well being and safety. Annual physicals are important for any age, but they can be particularly critical for a growing child.

Tips for a successful physical

1) Write down your questions and concerns in advance so you will not forget to ask your physician 2) Schedule your physical in advance of required due dates for camps and school sports. 3) Be aware of your own family history and update your records as needed. 4) Tell the truth. Your physician is not there to judge you, but to help you in your effort to live a healthy life.

For Adults

Remember to ask for a skin cancer evaluation when receiving your annual physical. More than 2 million cases of skin cancer are found in US patients each year. Melanoma, the most serious type of skin cancer, will be diagnosed 75,000 times in 2012. LK


hip s r be m e y M onl nth! o m / $85

What is your family doing this summer?

Get off the couch and out of the house! Swim & Social / Dining Memberships include privileges at Alvamar Aquatic Center, use of the clubhouse private dining facilities and invitations to social events. Contact J. Taylor (785) 842-7767 or jtaylor@alvamar.com


Outgrowing

your house?

Build an Apple Tree Home. Families in Lawrence have been growing into custom Apple Tree Homes for more than 20 years. We know each family is unique, and we work with you to build a home to fit your family’s needs.

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Season’s Readings the librarians at the lawrence public library know a thing or two about reading. here are their suggestions for the best spring books for every one from your toddler to your teen.

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preschool-3rd grade

middle grades

Bink & Gollie by Kate DeCamillo

Theodore Boone, Kid Lawyer by John Grisham

Two roller-skating best friends-one tiny, one tall-share three comical adventures involving outrageously bright socks, an impromptu trek to the Andes and a most unlikely marvelous companion. Wonderful illustration by Allison McGhee. This was the 2011 winner of the Geisel Award for beginning readers.

Elephant and Piggie books by Mo Willems

Anything by Willems is wonderfully silly, the punchy text enhanced by the great art. I Broke My Trunk was a Geisel honor book this year.

First the Egg by Laura Seeger

Geisel honor book of 2008 and Caldecott honor book of 2008. This is a simple beautifully illustrated book about transformation, from tadpole to frog, from caterpillar to butterfly, paint to picture.

Little Mouse Gets Ready by Jeff Smith

A graphic novel with minimal text, very cute. Little Mouse gets dressed to go to the barn with his mother, brothers, and sisters. But wait, why would a mouse get dressed? Geisel honor book 2010.

Mercy Watson to the Rescue by Kate DiCamillo

Mercy is a porcine wonder (that means a wonderful pig). One night she snuggles up with Mr. and Mrs. Watson. This is not good news for the Watsons’ bed, or the Watsons. A 2007 Geisel honor book. There are several more Mercy Watson adventures.

With two attorneys for parents, 13 year-old Theodore Boone knows more about the law than most lawyers. But when a high profile murder trial comes to his small town and Theo gets pulled into it, it’s up to this amateur attorney on a bike to save the day. Told in straightforward Grisham style, clear but fast paced.

Enola Holmes: the Case of the Missing Marquess by Nancy Springer

Another fun Sherlock Holmes spinoff. Enola Holmes, much younger sister of detective Sherlock Holmes, must travel to London in disguise to unravel the disappearance of her missing mother. In the process, she solves other mysteries and eludes her brothers Sherlock and Mycroft who want her to stop this foolishness and be a lady. So far there are 5 more books in this series.

young teens My Big Mouth: 10 songs I wrote that almost got me killed by Peter Hannan

When Davis moves to a new school after the death of his mother, he immediately gets on the wrong side of the school bully. He starts a band called The Amazing Dweebs along with Molly, the girl he has a crush on...who is Gerald’s girlfriend.

Blood Red Road by Moira Young In a distant future, eighteen-yearold Lugh is kidnapped, and while his sisters are trailing him across bleak Sandsea they are captured and taken to brutal Hopetown. His twin sister Saba is forced to be a cage fighter, as a dangerous escape is planned.

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e Fre ling ow er! B s Kid Summ s Thi

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how we roll Leaa Merrill runs 35-45 miles a week, almost all of those are with son Finn rolling along.

1. How long have you been running with your kids? Five years 2. What is your motivation to keep running? To be a healthier, more active person. I love to run, so I don’t really need motivation. It has become a part of my daily routine. 3. What are your favorite routes? I enjoy the trail off of 6th and K-10. It’s long, I don’t have to worry about traffic, and it’s so quiet. 4. Does Finn (2) enjoy the ride? Yes, he loves it! 5. What do you enjoy most about running with Finn? I like knowing that I’m reinforcing the importance of exercise and learning good heathy habits. 6. What advice would you give a parent that is thinking of getting a stroller and running with their kids? Find someone you know with a jogger borrow it for a couple runs to confirm you and your child will both enjoy it. They are expensive, so make sure it will get used!

photo by Tara Nelson

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5 Easy Tips

for dealing with a picky eater

by Jennifer Powers

In my life as a mom and my role as an early childhood educator, I have had the opportunity to dine with literally hundreds of children. Over the years various issues have come up around the table, but far and away the most common trouble with children and their food is simply whether they will eat it or not. Picky eaters are everywhere these days and span the extremes of those kids who will not eat anything green to those who will not eat items that are touching others on the plate. Children develop particularities for food at an early age and for a variety of reasons. Sometimes it’s the color they don’t like. Sometimes it’s the texture of a food that is off putting. Whatever the reason may be, family life is busy and dinner time is one moment in the day when parents and children should come together. Having a picky eater at the table can interrupt some of the mealtime camaraderie. Here are 5 easy tips for dealing with a picky palate. cont.

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1 Start Young Contrary to the thoughts of big baby food manufacturers, babies like strong flavors. Introduce new eaters to various tastes as soon as they begin eating from the spoon. Add spices like cumin and curry to jarred vegetables. Mash cilantro and lime in with an avocado. Roast apples with cinnamon and nutmeg. Puree your own table foods like chili, spaghetti and soups for older babies who are ready for a chunkier texture. Babies who are introduced to these exotic flavors at a young age learn to like adventurous tastes and are less likely to become a kid who only wants plain noodles, every night.

2 Offer Children a Varied Plate Introduce a variety of fruits and vegetables, colors and flavors at each meal. Current thinking from the medical profession is that a child’s plate should have at least four different colors represented. Continue to offer new items even after your child has rejected them. It sometimes takes trying something up to twelve times before one really knows if they care for it or not. Encourage your child to try new and familiar foods again and again. Use phrases that appeal to their pride like “I bet now that you are five and are so much bigger you’ll really like sweet potatoes. You didn’t like them when you were little, but I bet you will now since you are soooo grown up.”

3 Is Your Child Hungry? Don’t let your child graze throughout the day. Have a time when a healthy snack is offered and stick to that routine. Children have tiny tummies and can easily fill up on carbs or junk before a meal. Children who have a hungry belly are more likely to eat what is offered without complaint.

Let Children Help

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Children are very excited about cooking in the kitchen. A child who has a hand in helping with the preparation of a dish is far more likely to be excited about eating it. I’ve seen a whole group of kids rush a buffet for roasted root vegetables (beets! turnips! parsnips!) simply because they had washed, peeled and chopped them. A one year-old can tear lettuce for a salad. Child-sized cutting boards, safety knives, spoons, non-slip bowls and pitchers all provide a young child a safe means for cooking along-side a parent. Encourage older children to come up with an evening menu based on what is in the fridge and cabinets. Let him plan the meal and direct the cooking. Yes, it takes more time and will definitely be messy, but invite your child into the kitchen with you. Not only will she develop an appreciation for the work it takes to put a meal on the table, but will be more inclined to try food that she had a hand in preparing.

It’s All in the Phrasing

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Creative wording from adults can be an effective tool for helping children over the hump of non-consumption. Renaming vegetables something fun and unexpected can go a long way in overcoming hesitant eaters. “Would you like a little or a lot” replaces asking the child if he wants to try something or not. The latter implies that “no” is an option.

Jennifer Powers is a mother of three girls, avid foodie and an early childhood educator at Raintree Montessori.

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Finger

lickin’

Good! A local mom helps bring organic, edible finger paints to Lawrence

Wee Can Too Art Supply is an organic art line for babies, toddlers, and young children for parents seeking a safe, healthy; all natural finger paints crayons and chalk that are completely edible.

Too paints, Ditton was tired and overwhelmed. Now a mother of two, she connected with a client in Kansas. Fellow mom Nichole Groat owned the online store Vanny Bean Organic Children’s Store and was a fan of Wee Can Too from the start.

Wee Can Too has no toxins or preservatives and is completely Ditton and Groat are both outgoing, lively, passionate and safe for babies 6 months and older. Co-founders Sarid Ditton full of ideas. They clicked instantly. Groat loved the product so and Nichole Groat are taking on the world, one budding artist much that she decided to partner with Ditton. at a time. The eco friendly, organically edible paints are fantastic. They Ditton started the company four years ago in her home. She are completely safe for kids - edible in case they decide to put wanted finger paints that would endure the curiosity of an in- their little hands into their mouth, which has been known to fant. Though many companies claim to be safe and non-toxic, happen while finger painting. We Can Too has captured the East most still contain dyes that made her feel unsettled about “feed- Coast market, and are moving to the Midwest. Wee Can Too has ing” them to her baby. Ditton started tinkering in the kitchen been praised by numerous mommy bloggers and parents of auand developed a product that is completely edible, organic and tistic children have found great use for the paints for art therapy. most of all, safe for babies and toddlers. We Can Too paints was born. The products can be found locally at the Phoenix Gallery in downtown Lawrence and online at Vanny Bean’s website. After two busy years of marketing and manufacturing Wee Can 27


Joe and Sarah Farthing Joe and Sarah Farthing are raising twin sons, running their own business (J&S Coffee) and building a family. Here’s how they do it... in their own words.

How We Live photos by Casey Wright

Joe:

Sarah:

We met while at Washington University in St. Louis. I was in graduate school helping with an undergraduate course. This cute little brunette would always sit near me in class and have a thousand questions. I thought he was cute, what can I say. By asking questions about the class and starting conversations through the semester, I could avoid the obvious that I was flirting with him. cont.

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Sarah:

After we got married, we knew we wanted to open a coffee shop, and we knew we wanted to live in a college town. Joe and I, literally got out a map and starting listing cities. Are families live in Kentucky and Colorado, so our final choices came down to Lawrence and Iowa City, Iowa.

Joe:

We tried to plan ahead, thinking not just about what we wanted in a community right at the time, but the type of community where we would want to raise a family. We really liked the ‘feel’ of Lawrence when we visited. The proximity to Kansas City is great, and we liked that the city supported the arts.

Sarah:

And the public schools are fantastic. I think that is what really set Lawrence apart. We didn’t have kids at the time, but we knew we would, at some point, and having a solid school system was incredibly important.

Sarah:

When we started the coffee shop, we were essentially newlyweds. Lots of people told us we were crazy, but looking back, I really enjoyed that time. We worked together, every day, all day. After 12 or 15 hours, we’d head home together and eat dinner. It was simple and great.

Joe:

We definitely went ‘all-in’ on the coffee shop. And I agree with Sarah. I think spending that time together, working on a single goal of getting the shop off the ground was great for our marriage. We learned a lot of lessons.

Sarah:

After a few years, when things at J&S started to stabilize a bit, we started thinking about having kids. We both wanted kids, but we had been so emotionally and physically invested in the coffee shop that we hadn’t given it much thought. And we didn’t think we had the time.

Joe:

Yeah, I’m not sure there was ever going to be a perfect time to start a family, but I guess that was one of the lessons we learned.

Sarah:

The pregnancy was not too bad. We found out we were having twins and were thrilled. You know, the double the fun, right?

Joe:

We decided, pretty early on, that we would accept more traditional gender roles, and it works for us. Before we had Ian and Henry, we split almost all of the household work evenly. We would both cook, both clean and do laundry. Since we had the boys Sarah takes care of the house, and I take care of the coffee shop.


Sarah:

That’s not to say that everything is totally split. I will still, occasionally, cover a shift at the coffee shop and Joe still makes dinners and cleans. Having the understanding or our responsibilities has helped. We know what we each need to do, and we get it done. Also, having a flexible schedule is great. Joe has never missed a doctor or school appointment for the boys.

Joe:

Having Ian and Henry has really been a blessing. They put everything into perspective and give a real motivation to do things the right way.

Sarah:

Ian and Henry are both so inquisitive. That’s something we are both very proud about. We’ve never let them watch must television and encourage them to ask questions. Sometimes though, when an answer isn’t satisfying them, it can be a bit much.

Joe:

Sarah:

Joe:

Sarah:

Joe: Sarah:

Sarah and I are both outdoor people, so not watching television has never been a big deal. Ian and Henry both would rather be running outside than stuck indoors too. We also make reading books a big priority.

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We’ve realized that, with having twins boys running around the house, fights are inevitable. Joe and I really try to use their inquisitive nature to teach them better behavior. We’ll ask them why they acted the way they did. Also, we let them know saying your sorry does not solve a problem. Vein.Center.GEN.LawrenceKids.ad.indd

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Getting the boys to help around the house was tough at first, but we’ve turned it into a family activity. We tell them why we need to keep the house clean and that it’s part of being a Farthing. They’ve seemed to really take to that. One of the most important things we do is give each boy individual time with each parent. Joe or I will take one of the boys and spend a day or an afternoon alone with them doing something they enjoy. Maybe it’s going to the zoo or to look at tractors or a museum. I’m not sure who enjoys those days more, the boys or us. I think what’s most important is for all parents, us included, to realize what a blessing it is to have children. I think too many people concentrate on the negatives of raising kids. Sure, there are tough days, but this isn’t just your life. This is your kid’s life. You owe to them to be your best and to teach them the right way to live. And enjoy it. I mean, being a parent is pretty awesome. LK

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Tennis sh befo


hould be a game ore it becomes a sport. 10 and Under Tennis follows the same logic as other youth sports like baseball or soccer, which use kid-sized courts and kid-sized equipment. Kids learn to play baseball by first playing T-ball; they use shorter, lighter bats and larger, softer balls. Kids learning basketball shoot baskets with kid-sized balls on lowered backboards and they play soccer on smaller fields with smaller goals. Now with 10 and Under Tennis, balls bounce lower, don’t move as fast through the air and are easier to hit. Kids tennis racquets are sized for small hands and courts are smaller and easier to cover. By using this format, the benefits are immediate and within a short time kids are rallying, playing and excited to keep playing. That means kids will have more fun and less frustration. They’re playing real tennis and having real fun - and that’s what is most important. The crew at the Jayhawk Tennis Center knows when a child starts playing tennis, they rarely stop. In fact, those who begin playing tennis by the age of 10 are more likely to continue playing than that of any other sport. The Jayhawk Tennis Center has the staff and experience to help your child reach their full potential, from their first swing in the 10 and under program, to their last rally in the elite Jayhawk Tennis Academy. Jayhawk Tennis Center is dedicated to teaching children the right way to play the game in a fun and friendly environment. Call or stop by for more information about programs, lessons and special events.

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This American Family Aaron and Molly Parker knew they wanted a family. They didn’t know their kids were waiting for them at the end of Reece’s Rainbow. photos by Amy Hall

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M

olly and Aaron Parker’s home in East Lawrence is a modest two-story house on a quiet street. Flowers border swept steps that lead to the door. Bikes, scooters and balls litter the front yard’s grass. Sidewalk chalk is spread across the concrete. It’s just after dinner time and from outside, rambunctious children are heard scampering through the house. A peek through the window shows a wall decorated with children’s paintings and drawings. The Parker home is, by all accounts, an almost Rockwellian picture of family life in Lawrence, Kansas. Inside the home, Molly and Aaron sit at their dinning room table and tell the story of how they came to adopt their two adorable children, Reed and Lena. The boy and girl playfully peek from around the corner, quick to run away giggling when spotted. Molly is a jubilant mom with the type of round eyes normally designated for a Disney princess. Her nearly omnipresent smile is calming and confident. She has the kind of maternal presence that, when she speaks to her children, they stop and listen. Aaron is a tall and quiet man. He is thoughtful when he speaks and diligent with what he says. Though the quieter of the two, his wry smile hints at a great, dry sense of humor. The pride Aaron and Molly exude when speaking about Reed and Lena is undeniable. Neither can start a sentence about their kids without a small smile gracing their face. Often, when speaking about their kids, they glance at each other and smile. They are a typical young family, reveling in the joys of parenthood. How Reed and Lena came into their lives, however, is not typical.

Deciding to Adopt Molly and Aaron both planned on having children. Though adoption was something the newlywed couple agreed that they might do it “someday,” What the couple didn’t know, was that each was thinking about adoption. More specifically, international adoption. They had done some research and were astonished with the conditions of international orphanages. “Aaron and I learned about heart-breaking lives of children in orphanages and we knew that we needed to do something.,” Molly says. “We realized that we just could not wait. There was no reason great enough to wait. With the realities of institutionalization and even if a child survives that institutionalization, the realities once a child leaves the orphanage system were

37


too much to bare.” Aaron tells the story of how, while discussing the options, both he and Molly mentioned Eastern Europe. That lead them to Reece’s Rainbow.

Reece’s Rainbow The mission statement of Reece’s Rainbow reads: “to rescue orphans with Down syndrome and other Special Needs through the gift of adoption, to raise awareness for all of the children who are waiting in 25 countries around the world, and to raise funds as adoption grants that help adoptive families afford the high cost of adopting these beautiful children.” Andrea Roberts was inspired by her son Reece, who was born with that extra 21st chromosome, to start Reece’s Rainbow in 2004. The organization began as an outreach program serving new families with babies with Down syndrome at Northside Hospital in Atlanta, GA. “The nurse who attended me postpartum with Reece called and asked if she could use Reece’s name for her hospital service project,” Andrea writes on the Reece’s Rainbow website. “She asked if I would come talk to new families and share everything I have learned with them before they were discharged from the hospital. I was moved, honored and terrified. Would I be able to face a new grieving mother? Would I be able to help and not break down again? Yes.” In 2006, the program expanded to include promoting the international adoption of children with Down syndrome and special needs. By raising money to offer adoption grants on waiting children, the organization is able to give adoptive families the extra financial help they need to bring a child with special needs home from a miserable existence in overseas orphanages. According to Families of Promise, in Central and Eastern European countries alone (including Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Romania, etc, but not Russia), there are more than 1.5 million children who have been abandoned by their families and are living in “public care.” If statistically, 1 out of every 733 live births result in a child with Down syndrome, that means at any given time there are 2,046 children with Down syndrome who need families in Europe. In Russia, there are over 700,000 children waiting for families, meaning at least 955 children with Down syndrome wait. In Asia, there are and estimated 3.6 million orphans who are unwanted.

Timeline When the Parker’s decided they would, in fact, adopt interna-

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tionally, they settled on the Ukraine. Then, an 8-month process began. The process included 4 home study meetings, 4 fundraisers, writing detailed autobiographies, fingerprinting and stacks of redundant, often frustrating paperwork. In November of 2010, 7 months after the adoption process began, Molly and Aaron traveled to Ukraine to meet their children, with no guarantee a court would approve the adoptions. On November 24, Molly and Aaron met Reed and Lena in their orphanage. Though they had seen pictures, the emotions of meeting them in person were almost overwhelming. “The entire process is an emotional rollers coaster,” Molly says. “We had spent weeks in a country in which we don’t speak the language. It was cold and wet all the time. But the day we met our kids was awesome. Just awesome. It’s not like they ran across the room into our arms, but Aaron and I both knew that those were our kids.” Two weeks later a Ukrainian court approved the adoptions. Two weeks after that, the family of four boarded a plane headed toward the United States. On the plane, waiting for takeoff, the language barrier became apparent. “We knew the language barrier would be an issue,” Aaron admits (Reed and Lena only spoke Russian). “But while in the Ukraine we had translators and the kids were in their environment. When we were on the plane home, the only word Reed really knew was cookie. He sat with me on the 12-hour flight across the ocean and, well, he had a lot of cookies.”

At Home Reed and Lena have settled in to their life in Lawrence. The kids are not biological siblings, but do remember each other from the orphanage. Because of the lackluster orphanage system in Eastern Europe, health records for the kids were sparse. The adoption agencies do their best, according to Aaron, but too many things slip through the cracks. Molly says the kids are “really doing great” and haven’t had any unanticipated health issues. “It’s really a blessing how much they love each other,” Molly says with a big smile. “Reed’s language skills have developed more quickly than Lena’s (Reed is a year older), and he loves to call her his sister. I really love that too.” Though the couple hasn’t ruled out having biological children, they have started the process of another international adoption and are again using Reece’s Rainbow. “We are so blessed,” Molly says while glancing at Aaron and holding his hand. “From the support of our friends and families to the life we have with Reed and Lena is more than we could have ever hoped for.” LK


Aaron, Reed, Molly and Lena the day they met in the Ukrainian orphanage

39


unplug Richard Louv’s book

introduced the idea of Nature-Deficit Disorder. The author discusses the danger of missing nature and how to get your kids outside.

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What sparked your initial interest in the idea of Nature Deficit Disorder and the danger poised to children who do not play outside? Anything that affects children is going to shape the future. In the late 1980s, in the course of researching another book, I interviewed nearly 3,000 children and parents across the United States, in urban, suburban and rural areas. In classrooms and family homes, the topic of children’s relationships with nature sometimes surfaced. I couldn’t help but notice the increasing divide between the young and the natural world, and the social, spiritual, psychological and environmental implications of this change. And then there were the questions my own sons would ask me about the changes that they had seen. Some of their peers spent a lot of their free time indoors. How did your relationship with your own children influence your desire to write Last Child in the Woods? Having children of your own reintroduces you to that world of childhood in a very direct way, for one thing. Generally speaking, I couldn’t help but notice the increasing divide between the young and the natural world, and the social, spiritual, psychological and environmental implications of this change. I took my sons fishing every chance I had, and sometimes hiking, or camping in our old van. We lived on a canyon when the boys were smaller, and we encouraged them to build forts and explore behind our house. When I had interviews to conduct that involved the outdoors, I often tried to think of ways to bring one of my sons along. I’m sure being around the boys to that extent influenced my writing in direct and subtle ways. What did you do as a family to encourage your children’s outdoor pursuits? Camping and fishing trips in our VW van figure highly in family recollections, though I am not sure they needed a great deal of encouragement from me to roam around outdoors. cont.

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What are some easy steps parents can take to help unplug their children and families? Not just parents -- grandparents, aunts or uncles, longtime neighbors -- we all can spend more time with children in nature. This is quite a challenge, one that emphasizes the importance of exploring nearby opportunities. The latest edition of Last Child in the Woods has a section titled “100 Actions We Can Take,” to help answer this question. You can help plant a garden, or encourage wildlife rehabilitation, or go canoeing, birding, fishing or camping. You can join or start a family nature club. The Children & Nature Network now offers a terrific took kit to get you started with this. To learn more about family nature clubs, and to read advice from those who have done it at www.childrenandnature.org/natureclubs/ It can be as simple as planning regular walks around a local park, or taking picnics, or learning how to garden in containers on the back stoop. For young families, the Children & Nature Network’s sister Web site, Nature Rocks (www.naturerocks. org), offers a host of activities and resources. It’s never too early, or too late, to teach children to appreciate the outdoors. Most children and young adults simply don’t know what they’re missing. What has been the reaction to your proposed diagnosis of Nature Deficit Disorder? Very positive. There had been many good people working to restore the human link to nature before Last Child in the Woods, and I’m grateful my book helped bring together a number of diverse voices and ideas. The book has found a receptive audience. I introduced that term in the book to serve as an easy-to-grasp description of the human costs of alienation from nature - a reduction of the richness of the human experience. The term was not meant to be a medical diagnosis, obviously, but it was easily understood. I think it’s wonderful that the book has been translated into several languages, and that has been part an evolving and expanding story. I certainly didn’t anticipate joining so many talented people dedicated to reuniting children and nature. Thanks to everyone’s intense interest, we’re seeing real progress. How has technology helped or hurt children’s desire 44

to play outside. Technology isn’t the demon, in my view, but it can be a supremely seductive form of entertainment and engagement. Human beings have been urbanizing, then moving indoors, since the invention of agriculture and, later, the Industrial Revolution. Social and technological changes in the past three decades have accelerated that change. But oftentimes what keeps many children from enjoying free play is their parents’ or caregivers’ perception of stranger-danger, which far exceeds the reality, as well as busy time schedules, densely urbanized environments and all the rest. The latest tech gear can also be a tool to help get children outdoors, but they need a helping hand to make that happen. For example, digital wildlife photography is appropriate for small children, teenagers, and adults. Digital cameras are portable, they can be fairly inexpensive, and there’s no cost for film. Fascinating recent studies by the Human-Environment Research Laboratory at the University of Illinois show that direct exposure to nature can help relieve the symptoms of attention-deficit disorders. By comparison, activities indoors, such as watching TV, or activities outdoors in paved, non-green areas, leave these children functioning worse. Research also indicates student achievement levels rise in core academic areas, including reading, math and science, when learning takes place in more natural settings. Can you elaborate on your concept of structured unstructured time (parents need to schedule time for their children not to have a schedule)? Recent research that focuses on young people suggests that exposure to nature can improve all children’s cognitive abilities and resistance to negative stresses and depression. The fact is, we do need to schedule outdoor time, direct experiences in nature; make getting outside in a natural area an intentional act - a healthful habit, if you will - that becomes part of your life and your family’s life. We all have a choice. More than 100 studies reveal that one of the main benefits of spending time in nature is stress reduction. Without direct physical contact with the natural world, children’s knowledge about the environment is abstract, for the most part, and they tend to see a world with problems that are overwhelming. Contact with nature allows


children to see they are part of a larger world that includes them. If children are given the opportunity to experience nature, even in simple ways, interaction and engagement follow quite naturally. Evidence suggests creativity is stimulated by childhood experiences in nature, and that greener neighborhoods are associated with lower child obesity. We all should stop and watch the clouds more often. What can communities do to encourage families to get outside? Perhaps the simplest thing is to get to know your neighbors. Invest yourself in the life of the block and the surrounding community. Create a play-watch group and ask fellow parents to sit on front stoops or porches or lawns several hours a week; that way they are available at a distance as children play. The so-called “Leave No Child Inside” initiatives are oftentimes regional, sometimes community-based; many of these have been formed in the last few years. Families themselves can do a lot. In the later editions of the book, we’ve included a section of 100 Actions that families and communities can take on their own. One of them is for families to band together to form their own family nature clubs, to make sure they spend time in nature that is safe and builds community. I’d urge families to download a free tool kit on how to create a family nature club from the C&NN Web site.

g nrollin Nfoowr 2E012-2013!

That said, unfortunately, most housing tracts constructed in the past several decades are controlled by strict covenants that discourage or ban the kind of outdoor play many of us enjoyed as children. And looking at the larger picture, oftentimes conservancies provide the only viable option for landowners and are the primary entity that stands between natural areas and the bulldozers. I know the Catawba River Basin and southern Piedmont region of North Carolina have been under development pressure – as have most areas of the country – and the Catawba Lands Conservancy has been an effective counterbalance since 1991. We need these places for the health of our cultural spirit. I’m especially interested in the collaboration on Carolina Thread Trail, which I understand will link a couple million people across 15 counties with hundreds of miles of walking and bike trails. That is a terrific partnership. I am hopeful that the potential convergence of several trends and campaigns - New Urbanism, Smart Growth, Livable Communities, Green Urbanism and a neo-agriculture movement will result in considerable improvements in urban areas. The individuals in these organizations know our built environment directly affects our physical and emotional health. When they focus on the young population, each of these movements takes on special meaning – and power. Richard Louv is the co-founder and chairman of the Children & Nature Network (www.childrenandnature.org) and recipient of the 2008 Audubon Medal. For more information, visit www.lastchildinthewoods.com.

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The Bartender’s Wife a relationship, a house and a baby. the story of one of Lawrence’s most well-known couples. photos by Casey Wright

The Relationship Debbi Johanning will be the first to tell you, sometimes a mother just knows. In the mid 1990’s, she was a student at the University of Kansas, and her mom would kid her. “When David played basketball at KU, he was always my mom’s favorite,” Debbi says. “I never really understood it, but she always thought he was great. Occasionally, she would mention to me that I should really try to met that David Johanning.” By chance, Debbi was at the Sandbar with some friends. The tall bartender looked familiar. When she realized who it was, Debbi knew she needed a picture together. “This was, you know, in the old days before digital cameras,” she laughs. “I took the picture, mailed it to my mom. She was thrilled.” David didn’t think much of it. “I don’t know,” he shrugs with modesty. “People have always wanted their picture with me. It’s part of being a bartender.” Something about the cute blonde stood out to the tall, baritone Johanning. The more she came in to the Sandbar, the more he thought about her. The two soon started dating (yes, of course her mom approved), and it didn’t take long for them to get serious. Dating led to an engagement. The engagement begot a spring wedding in downtown Lawrence. The fun-loving couple and their boisterous crew weren’t done celebrating when Liberty Hall ended the reception at midnight. “Yeah, like our friends were going to go home at midnight,” Debbi says with a sarcastic nod. “So, naturally, we walked down the street to The Sandbar.” Debbi will neither confirm, nor deny that she, in her wedding dress, and the entire wedding party shook their tail feathers on the bar. “Of course we did,” David deadpans.

The House David and Debbi had been looking for a house to buy and their realtor kept showing them new, modern homes. “I think he was just looking out for us,” Debbi says with hint of concession. “We wanted an older home we could work on and make ‘our own.’ And David is an absolutely fantastic handyman. Our realtor was really sweet, and I don’t think he thought we knew what we were getting into.” The couple found a 100-plus year-old home in East Lawrence and fell in love. The home had the character they desired and was close to work. When they bought the home, it was divided into two apartments. Work began almost immediately, with David doing almost all of the work himself. The couple knew they would find a few surprises, but the extent of work needing to be done was, at times, nearly over-

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whelming. “The extent of the work was just...” David says while looking at the ceiling and shaking his head. The home had short doorways, and raising the archways was a job on the couple’s to-do list. While walking into the kitchen one day, the towering David hit his head for “the last time.” “I grabbed a hammer and took one big swing at the doorway,” David reminisces. “That first swing took a nice chunk out of the doorway. Just enough to show the termite infestation.” Deconstruction of the doorway led to the adjourning wall in the kitchen, which led to the entire kitchen. The termites were thick. “I don’t know if we planned on tearing apart the entire kitchen,” David says, glancing at Debbi. “But after about 15 minutes with the hammer, we didn’t have a choice.” Over the course of a decade, they have nearly doubled the size of the home, (including a kitchen full of cabinets handmade by David), purchased the adjourning lot and added a swimming pool. Debbi, with heavy hesitation, says she thinks they are almost done. “Eleven years, that’s long enough, right?”

The Baby Both David and Debbi knew they wanted to start a family. It was, as they tell the story, something they thought they would do when the time was right. “Yeah, I know,” Debbi laughs. “The time is never just right. Life doesn’t really knock on the door and say ‘Hey, it’s time to have a baby.’ But with David getting to be an old man, we figured we better get to it.” When the couple’s In vitro Fertilization was successful, they were thrilled, and relieved. As soon as they began telling family and friends, the advice started rolling in like Saturday patrons to the Sandbar. “Oh, it was everything,” David says. “People said we had to have this certain type of wipe and that stroller and when to sleep and how to eat and what to look for in the poop.” The most heated discussions revolved around what the Johannings would name they unborn son. “For nine months, we debated names for our baby boy,” Debbi wrote on her blog Wife of a Bartender. “There were serious contenders along with the not-so-serious, names that one of us liked but the other didn’t, and of course Dave and friends tossed out plenty of silly names that were never really in the running.” When the couple arrived at the hospital in late December, they hadn’t decided on a name. The day after their son was born, they didn’t have a name. Or the next day. “The nurse would come in with the birth certificate and just kind of stand around,” Debbi laughs. “But this is our son’s name. We only get one chance to get it right.” David was keenly aware of the importance of the name. Having been reared in locker rooms, he knew how a boy’s name would go a long way in deciding his nickname. That, he says, is important. “We almost decided on Cash,” David says. “Then one of my friends said ‘Oh, that’s great. He can sign his name with a dollar

sign!’ We decided against it pretty quickly.” William was a strong, traditional choice. Both liked it and David made the argument that, since he was born on December 27, their baby shared a birthday with KU basketball coach Bill Self. “In the end, though, we decided on Cooper,” Debbi says while smiling at her son. “That was one of the very first names we had talked about, and look at him. Doesn’t he just look like a Cooper?” Debbi and David have taken to parenting like old pros. Debbi has the grace and calming influence of a natural mother and David’s pride and easy-going nature are evident when holding his son. After Debbi feeds Cooper, David rubs his back to burp him. The sight of the nearly 7 ft man coddling his newborn is both heartwarming and humourous. The parents don’t take themselves too seriously and are clearly proud of their son. Debbi spent her maternity leave (she works as an editorial assistant for KU) taking Cooper for walks through East Lawrence and Downtown. Yes, she even occasionally takes Cooper into his dad’s bar. “It’s so much like that scene from Sweet Home Alabama,” Debbi laughs. “Yes, I’m bringing my baby to the bar. But it’s the afternoon, I’m not drinking and his dad is running the place.” David is one of the most recognizable people in Lawrence. Whether people know him from his Jayhawk playing days or from his role in The Sandbar’s legendary St. Patrick’s Day floats and summer parties, folks often stop him to say hi. Lately, however, people are congratulating him. “I love it,” he says with a big smile. Plans for additional children are unclear. Right now, according to Debbi, the couple is still adjusting their new life as a family of 3 (4 if you count golden lab Lucy, and 5 if you count the house). “We are both really thankful,” Debbi says. “We’ve made a pretty great, fun life for ourselves. Having Cooper is just the best. We’re surrounded by our friends and our families are great.” And that picture Debbi sent to her mom years ago? “It’s still on her refrigerator.” LK


A Super Birthday Party! Jack calls on his super friends to help celebrate turning 8... photos by Annie Werner Styled by Tasha Keathley


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Lawrence Party ideas! 1. Bowling @ Royal Crest Lanes Get your crew together and head to Royal Crest Lanes. They can bowl and play in the arcade, then eat cake and open presents in the party room. various party plan available. (785) 842-1234

2. Painting @ Sunfire Ceramics There are few things more fun than a sunny day downtown at sunf ire Ceramics. The adorable old gas station is full of ceramics (and now glass) waiting to be painted. You bring the cake and presents and Cheryl and her staff bring the paint and fun! (785) 749-2828 fi

3. Hanging with Big Jay @ the game Lawrence loves the Jayhawks. Kids love Big Jay. Why not combine the two and celebrate a birthday? The Junior Jayhawks host a variety of different party ideas available for almost all KU sports. (785) 864-7988

4. Hiking with the Squirrels @ The Lake Get out of town to celebrate. Just west of Lawrence, Clinton Lake State Park hosts dozens of parks and beaches that are perfect for a nature-centric party. Don’t worry about decorations, the trees and local critters have taken care of it. (785) 843-7665

5. Hit the links, Par 3 style Golfing 18 holes, or even 9, can be too much for some kids. But at The Orchards Golf Course the little runts can play all nine holes and not get bored. The course is short and family friendly. They aren’t know for parties, but they have a great patio that would work for cake and presents! (785) 843-7456

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5 things to do with your family

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1

Kansas Relays April 18 - April 23

Memorial Stadium / Downtown Lawrence

The Kansas Relays is, arguably, the most under appreciated event in Lawrence. Last year, when KU and the city agreed to host the shot put in downtown Lawrence, most her were apprehensive. The event went off without a hitch and was a huge success. Don’t miss it this year! For 5 days, athletes will compete in the Olympic sports in Memorial Stadium. Take an afternoon and head to the hill. Your kids will remember it in August when you watch the Summer Olympics together. For more information: www.kuathletics.com

KU Athletics

2

Go For a Walk All Season

Across Lawrence

Yes, it’s a simple idea. But, unfortunately, we can forget about the simple pleasure of going for a walk with your kids. Leave the dishes in the sink, turn off the television and go for a walk through your neighborhood. On the weekend, head west and walk along the shores of Clinton Lake.


3

Farmer’s Market

I can’t wait to go to the dentist again!

Saturdays and Tuesdays Downtown Lawrence

We live in Kansas, yet far too many of us don’t take advantage of our agricultural treasures. Spring is the perfect time to spend a Saturday morning strolling by the stands set by local farmers. Have your kids each pick one ingredient, then use them all to make a great family dinner on Saturday night.

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Caddy Stacks Golf April 28 & April 29 Lawrence Public Library

For one crazy weekend, you can stop hitting the books at the library and start whacking the golf balls! Caddy Stacks is a unique fundraiser featuring an 18-hole, community-built mini golf course winding its way through the library. This year’s theme is “The Lawrence Masters” and will feature holes inspired by local landmarks and luminaries. There is a small cost involved, so plan ahead! PMS 631 PMS 1915 PMS 012

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Monarch Watch Open House Saturday, May 12

Foley Hall / KU - West Campus

Ready to start a butterfly garden or improve the one you have? If so, visit the Monarch Watch for their annual Spring Open House & Plant Fundraiser. They will have nearly 4,000 butterfly plants (both annuals and perennials), including seedlings of nine milkweed varieties. Support the Monarch efforts and walk through their beautiful gardens.

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seasonal essentials Jill LaPoint has a love affair with Lawrence and spring might be her favorite time in town. The Spanish teacher at Corpus Christi shares her must haves for the season. Sophie (10) and Dominic (8) are along for the ride.

1. The KU Spring Football Game is a must do. “Especially this year with all the excitement surrounding our new coach.” 2. Snap some family photos by the tulips around the Chi-Omega Fountain. Nothing says spring like the gorgeous colors on campus. 3. Head downtown to Shark’s Surf Shop for some good spring-to-summer shoes for the whole family. “They carry TOMS, and I love TOMS peep-toe wedges. The ikat print and the yellow nautical stripe ones are on my spring wishlist.”


4. Anything at the Lawrence Arts Center. Take a class, go to a show or exhibit, soak up a 940 LIVE performance, attend Final Fridays or the Lawrence Art Auction. “Susan Tate and her staff are definitely turning the LAC into THE place to be for enjoying art in all its forms.” 5. Go to Au Marche and pick out some goodies for a picnic on a sunny spring day. The choices for the perfect picnic spot in Lawrence seem endless. 6. Load the iPod and enjoy a drive, music blasting, on the country roads outside town. Drive across Clinton Lake Dam and around Lone Star Lake; head east on Highway 458; or north on Highway 59 toward Oskaloosa. “There are so many drives that let you enjoy the beauty and rolling hills of Douglas County. The kids can sing along, watch for horses and old barns, or see who can count the most hawks.” 7. Sunscreen. Always. Rain or shine. “I keep a Neutrogena SPF stick in my purse so that the kids can easily touch up their sunscreen throughout the day.”

Jill, Sophie & Dominic head to the country for some spring fun.

photo by Emmalee Schaumburg


Let’s count the reasons. Ten fingers, ten toes. And countless reasons to choose the Family Birthing Center for your baby’s birth-day. From our new, more spacious and comfortable Family Birthing Center to our team of the most dedicated doctors and nurses in the region, we work together to deliver attentive, compassionate care for you and your baby during pregnancy, delivery and beyond. We want to keep you and your family healthy for life. To start your Journey through Parenthood with us, choose a doctor who chooses LMH. For a list of doctors and comprehensive pregnancy and parenting information, visit our new, interactive Web site at lmh.org/birthingcenter.

Lawrence Kids, Spring 2012  

A quarterly magazine celebrating the best of family life in Lawrence, Kansas.

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