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Health Issue


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A R e s o u r c e f o r F a m i l i e s i n A t h e n s , O c o n e e C o u n t y a n d t h e S u r ro u n d i n g A r e a


Building Families... Building Businesses Now in our 19th Year!

Building Muscle Wet Sheets, Dry Eyes Treating Scars The Dark Side of Childbirth H.A.L.T.! Recognizing Conditions Which Trigger Dangerous Behavior


summer camps PART ONE

free April 2017

Life Lessons for Daughters

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March/April 2017 Vol. 19 No. 3

“Building Families...Building Businesses� Locally Owned and Operated. Now In Our 19th Year! PRODUCTION DIRECTOR A.W. Blalock MANAGING EDITOR Sarah Danis WEB DESIGN/CALENDAR Chris Parsons DISTRIBUTION Claire Phillips FOUNDER Shannon H. Baker


Jill Castle, Liz Conroy, Sarah Danis, Dr. Jocelyn Ann Lieb, Justin and Le-Anne Noble, Dr. John Norris, Chris Parsons, Dr. Jon Robinson, Kimberly Wise, Mina Yu

Athens-Oconee Parent Magazine is published six times a year. Reader correspondence and editorial submission welcome.We reserve the right to edit, reject or comment editorially on all material contributed. No portion of this magazine may be reproduced without express written consent of the publisher. Athens-Oconee Parent Magazine reserves the right to refuse any advertising for any reason. The opinions expressed by contributors or writers do not necessarily reflect the opinions of this magazine. Distribution of this product does not constitute an endorsement of the products or services herein.

Athens-Oconee Parent Magazine P.O. Box 465,Watkinsville, GA 30677 Advertising: Editorial: Office & Production: Calendar: Website: PUBLISHED BY

on the cover Photo by Mark E. Malcolm Issac St. Clair, 17, at the 2016 Warrior Dash


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first words...


appy spring! 2017 is already flying by. Our baby turned one, while our big kid turned eight.Time needs to slow down! Schools are already letting out for spring break and then it will almost be time for summer vacation! Between now and then, we need to make sure to keep everyone healthy. With this year’s warm winter, it has felt like spring on and off for a while, but it’s officially springtime now! As we move away from the yucky colds and flus that have been prevalent in the winter, we want to get and keep our kids and ourselves feeling well. In this issue, we will be sharing ways to keep our bodies and our minds as healthy as possible. In this issue, Liz Conroy teaches us what H.A.L.T. means and the impact it had on her family. Dr. Jon Robinson has advice for us about dealing with stress and mental wellness with our kids.We will learn about handling the dark side of childbirth and post-partum depression with Dr. John Norris. Kimberly Wise writes a letter to the daughter she will never have, while Mina Yu has a poem for us about hand washing.We get bed-wetting advice from Justin and Le-Anne Noble and Jill Castle explains how teen athletes can build muscles with protein the safe way.This issue will also include the first half of our summer camp guide. It’s time to start thinking about plans for the summer! We are glad to share this health issue of Athens-Oconee Parent Magazine with you and your family! If you have an idea or suggestion for us, please email me to let me know at!

Sarah Danis

Trey (top), Oliver, Michael and Sarah

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Summer Camps PART ONE 25-29


8 How Teen Athletes Can Build

10 14 15 18 20 22

Muscle Safely With Protein Bed-wetting: No Shame! Warning Advisory Against Hand-Washing Do I Have To Live With This Scar? H.A.L.T.! To The Daughter I Will Never Have The Dark Side of Childbirth

14 8



6 Show & Tell 12 On Your Mind:

Batter Up! 16 Calendar 30 ’Til We Meet Again

Like us on Facebook! Athens-Oconee Parent Magazine

>read us online!

Read Athens-Oconee Parent Magazine anywhere, any time ... online! Visit and click “read online.” Also, check out our online calendar for up-to-date, family-friendly events.



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Compiled by Sarah Danis

The AOC Twilight Criterium returns to Athens April 28-29 for a weekend full of fun events for the family. There are vendors selling food, bike races, BMX competitions, and a 5K run. For the kids, there is a bike race (ages 5-14), a Big Wheel race (ages 5 and under), and a fun zone just for kids!

get out!

eat this!

PB&J Banana Burritos W

ant a twist on a traditional peanut butter and jelly sandwich? Try a peanut butter and jelly banana burrito! Ingredients: tortillas peanut butter jelly peeled bananas

Place tortillas on a paper towel and microwave for 10 seconds. Spread 2 tbsp. peanut butter on each tortilla. Add 1 tbsp. jelly to each tortilla. Place the banana near the edge of the tortilla and fold up the ends of the tortilla. Roll up and enjoy! Thanks to for this fun recipe!


food is the best medicine ... for constipation, says nutrition educator Tricia Williams, founder of Food Matters NYC. Being stopped up can have you “down in the dumps.” For a great natural way to relieve constipation naturally, try chia pudding for breakfast or a snack. Here’s her recipe for Coconut Chia Pudding to help you get everything moving.


Coconut Chia Pudding 2 cups coconut milk ½ cup chia seeds 1 tablespoon maple syrup Place chia seeds, coconut milk and maple syrup in a bowl.Whisk until thoroughly combined. Allow mixture to sit out at room temperature to allow chia seeds to bloom. Place mixture in an airtight container and refrigerate. Serve well chilled.Yields 4 servings.

use these! Make sure your kid’s contact information stays with your child for day trips away from home. Name Bubbles customized kids wristbands will stay legible for days and are made to be soft, pliable, and comfortable to wear. Perfect for trips to theme parks and water parks this spring and summer!

Send your ideas & photos to P.O. Box 465, Watkinsville, GA 30677 or e-mail 6

Athens-Oconee Parent

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read this!


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I Hate to Be Sick! By Aamir Bermiss

Follow along with this little guy who is home sick from school. Kids will relate to this lively easy reader from the “Just for You” series about how a boy feels when he wakes up sick. I woke up this morning and everything hurt. From my head to my toes, I just kept feeling worse.

ting a Ramsey Solutions is hos

ntest scholarship co Literacy

for National Financial April 6 and Month in April. Between Challenge” y rac Lite l cia nan 24, the “Fi z on qui a allows students to take . ge en all t on cen per 100 re Students who sco win to ible elig are z qui the online two prizes, including: One of ips for a $10,000 college scholarsh scholar000 $5, a ; ior high school sen a ; ior sen l oo sch h hig ship for a h school hig a for ip rsh ola sch $2,000 0 Amazon senior ; one of three $50 n. me lass erc gift cards for und

Did you know that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has a new app and is urging residents across the nation to download and use it? The app is designed to help families prepare for a wide array of natural and man-made disasters and can help affected Americans recover, should disaster strike. Download it for free in the App Store for Apple devices and Google Play for Android devices. For more information, visit

try these!

BeKool cooling patches provide non-medicated topical relief for fevers and headaches for both kids and adults.They can safely be used alongside your painkiller of choice, aren’t messy, and provide up to eight hours of cooling relief to alleviate headache and help cool sick, overheated bodies. BeKool’s soft gel sheets are easy to use: just apply directly to the forehead. Since it’s sticky on one side, you can apply it exactly where your head is aching and bypass all of the messy discomfort associated with ice packs or cold washcloths.


“The greatest gift you can give your family and the world is a healthy you.” Joyce Meyer

inspire! do you know a


The Gloria Barron Prize forYoung Heroes celebrates inspiring, public-spirited young people from diverse backgrounds all across North America. Established in 2001 by author T.A. Barron, the Barron Prize annually honors 25 outstanding young leaders ages 8 to 18 who have made a significant positive impact on people, their communities, or the environment.The top fifteen winners each receive $5,000 to support their service work or higher education. Applications are accepted online only and are due by April 15, 2017. For more information, visit





S5 M O M


he East Georgia Cancer Coalition (EGCC) is a cancer-focused regional collaboration anchored by the Augusta and Athens medical communities. One of its principal goals is to educate high-risk populations on cancer awareness, prevention, and early detection strategies. On May 6, 2017, the EGCC is hosting its 4th annual Run/Walk 5K Miles for Moms in the Five Points area of Athens, Georgia.This race will be held to increase awareness as well as to celebrate and recognize mothers who have fought or battled any type of cancer.This 5K event will highlight all cancer types, with special recognition of the survivors and families that have dealt with cancer. If you would like to participate in the 5K or make a monetary or in-kind donation of any amount, contact Morgan Ladd at


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get strong


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By Jill Castle, MS, RDN



How teen athletes can build muscle safely with


ouldn’t it be great if you could drink a magic formula, swallow a pill or sprinkle fairy dust on your food and watch your muscles grow? That’s often what young athletes hope will happen from eating protein. Unfortunately, the reality is that eating protein doesn’t equal big muscles. Instead, muscle growth is a complex process that relies on adequate consumption of protein and calories, hormones, and a healthy dose of exercise. Here are a few facts and tips to keep in mind before you amp up your protein in search of a new physique.


Athens-Oconee Parent

Work Builds Muscle

Although eating protein doesn’t build muscle on its own, the presence of protein in an athlete’s diet is important. Believe it or not, when you exercise, such as lifting weights or running, some of your muscle cells break down. Protein from food helps repair this damage from exercising and builds up more muscle making them stronger.

Strike a Balance While protein is important in building new muscles, eating the right amount of protein is key. Consuming more protein than your body needs may translate to excess calories that


must be stored, usually in the form of fat.Too little protein consumption means your body has to supply it itself, which can result in muscle breakdown and loss.When you eat a balanced diet that includes enough calories and protein, your body won’t use the protein as a calorie source – it will spare it to build muscles and repair them when needed.

How Much Protein Is Enough? Young athletes need slightly more protein than kids who aren’t athletes. Protein needs are based on age, gender and body weight, with kids and teens needing about 0.5 to 0.8 grams of protein for every pound of body

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THE BEST PROTEIN SOURCES Many foods contain protein, but high-quality protein comes from beef, poultry, fish, eggs, milk and dairy products, soy and soy products, beans, nuts and nut butters, and more. How much protein does your favorite food provide? Follow this chart to find out. FOOD • SERVING SIZE • GRAMS OF PROTEIN

Egg • 1 • 7 Milk • 1 cup • 8 Yogurt • 1 cup • 8 Ground beef, cooked • 4 ounces • 29 Chicken breast, cooked • 4 ounces • 27 Greek yogurt • 1 cup • 12 to 15 Cheese • 1 ounce • 7 Beans • ½ cup • 7 to 9 Tofu • ½ cup • 20 Quinoa • ½ cup • 4 Almonds • 1 ounce • 6 Nut butters • 2 tablespoons • 5 to 8 Fish (salmon) cooked • 4 ounces • 29

weight.This is different from non-athletes, who need about 0.4 to 0.5 grams of protein per pound of body weight. However, most athletes meet their protein requirements and then some. In fact, studies show that young athletes eat two to three times the Recommended Dietary Allowance for protein!

tein intake, taxing the kidneys and promoting dehydration. Plus, the risk for contamination with steroids or hormones is real, as the regulation of dietary supplements is largely left to manufacturers. The good news? You can meet your protein needs with food alone! Just be sure to eat a protein food, like the ones above, at each meal. ■

Beware of Protein Supplements Some athletes wonder about using a protein supplement such as protein powder or a high-protein drink. Overall, this isn’t necessary and even might be dangerous. Using protein supplements can lead to excessive pro-

Jill Castle, MS, RDN, is a registered dietitian/nutritionist and childhood nutrition expert.


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ummer is here, and for the majority of kids in America that means school is out and two months of freedom begins. A lot of kids will be heading off to camp, going on vacations with friends and family, and having tons of sleepovers. What a fun time, right? Well what if you’re a bed-wetter? Camp, vacations, and sleepovers aren’t so much fun when there is the constant threat of wet sheets and the shame and torment that accompanies them. So, how can we ensure our kids, and ourselves, that there is no reason to worry? A parent’s instinct is to protect their kids. This is a very good thing, not only for physical health, but also for emotional health. But how do you protect your kid from a wet bottom – and the embarrassment and cruel teasing from other children that often come with it? Bed-wetting is one of those glorious challenges that can greatly impact both the physical and mental well-being of your child. If your child is a bed-wetter, rest assured he is not alone. One in ten 7-year-olds and one in twenty 10-year-old kids wet the bed. The best thing we can do to protect any child who is experiencing this phase in life is to minimize shame. Sure, we can drink fewer fluids before bed and reduce (or better yet, eliminate) caffeinated beverages, but with most cases of bed-wetting, it’s more than a matter of liquids. It’s a matter of internal communication between the brain and the bladder that can’t be rushed. For some children, as they grow and develop, their bladder has a hard time getting the brain to wake up the body.There is nothing wrong with them. It’s just the body’s natural course of development.This is a phase their body is going through, and the majority of people simply grow out of it. Of course, sleeping away from home creates added stress. (As if your child’s developing brain


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By Justin and Le-Anne Noble

SHAME! doesn’t have enough to deal with!) But that fear shouldn’t keep your child (or you!) from experiencing one of the great joys of childhood summers – sleepovers, vacations, and sleep-away camps.

Here are a few things you can do to help prepare your child for an overnight stay away from home: • Inform an adult wherever it is they are staying (grandparent, a friend’s parent, camp counselor, etc.) of your child’s situation, so they can help your child should an issue arise. Also, let them know that you prefer not to make a big deal of it one way or the other. Emphasize that if an accident happens there is no need to act surprised, overly secretive, or for them to overcompensate in any other way. Bed-wetting happens – clean it up, be happy, and move on! • Encourage your child to drink less after 6pm and to empty their bladder before going to bed. And ask the parent/supervising adult to help monitor this, too. Remember, it takes a village! • Tell your child to avoid caffeinated beverages, especially closer to bedtime.You might choose to eliminate them altogether, but this can be understandably difficult, as many sleepovers are special occasions where treats like sodas may be included. • You can use big kid diapers or youth briefs at bedtime for the duration of their stay. Remember, your child is potty trained – this is not the problem – they just need a little help to keep those sheets dry at night.Try these out at home first.Your child may feel more comfortable with wet sheets than with special nighttime under garments. The bottom line is that bed-wetting is an issue that a lot of kids deal with. In fact, if you or another adult whom your child knows and looks up to is a former bed-wetter, share that information with your child! It helps to know that it’s entirely natural and no reason to miss out on the fun.With understanding, taking a few preventive measures, and educating your child you can protect your child from the stigma of bed-wetting and, more importantly, they can begin to protect themselves. ■ Authors’ Note: While bed-wetting is a normal part of development for many children and it is relatively common for children to wet the bed after age 7, it is generally advised to visit your pediatrician in order to rule out more serious issues if your child wets the bed and is older than 7, if they have had dry sheets for several months and then begin wetting the bed, or if other symptoms accompany the bedwetting. Justin and Le-Anne Noble are co-creators of the children’s book series My Body Village and Justin is a certified nutrition coach and Le-Anne is an expert in children’s entertainment. To learn more, visit:


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on your mind

By Dr. Jon Robinson

Oftentimes, with our help, kids can turn historically distressful situations into eustressful – or good stress – situations. For example, if your son plays little league baseball and has been in a slump at the plate, you might offer more batting practice and coaching to help him raise his confidence. Next time he comes to bat, with more confidence, he will look forward to it and anticipate a base hit.The same experience, batting, can be either distressful or eustressful, depending on your son’s mindset.”

“Batter Up” Dear Dr. Robinson, Everybody talks about stress these days, but what is that? Physically? Emotionally? My 10year-old son picks at his fingernails and absent-mindedly rocks gently back and forth when he’s concentrating. Is that stress? I’m so confused. - Signed, Concerned Parent Dear Concerned, Wow! Have you opened a can of worms?! Stress is a psych-social-emotional-physical phenomenon, and it’s everywhere. In fact, there is eustress, the good kind, as well as distress, the bad kind. Your son’s behavior may signal stress. First, simply call attention to it. “Son, you’re rocking 12

Athens-Oconee Parent

back and forth again. Everything okay?” It may just be an unconscious gesture. Other, more serious signs of stress include disruption in sleep patterns, loss of appetite or over-eating, and change of behavioral type (such as a quiet child becomes more vocal, a vocal child becomes more quiet). Physically, skin problems – other than developmentally generated acne – headaches, and gastrointestinal issues all are frequently associated with stress. Now, getting less press because it is not problematic, there is eustress.That’s the good stuff. For example, gravity is eustress. It just keeps us from floating into space. Anticipation of Christmas or birthdays, assuming there are good memories of these events, would also be examples of eustress.

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Use active listening when your son seems stressed.This will help him sort out his feelings and guide you in how to help him. Stress in and of itself is not bad. Focus on helping your son deal with it and turn it into a teachable moment.

Dear Dr. Robinson, My children get physical wellness checks every year. Occasionally, these checks have caught something that could have become a terrible illness, had we not caught it before getting out of hand. Is it also a good idea to get mental wellness checks? - Signed, Just Wondering Dear Ms.Wondering, What a great idea! You know, unfortunately, there is still some stigma to mental illness, so people tend to ignore symptoms until they are really pronounced. And, while current insurance laws require “parity” between physical health and mental health benefits, most insurance companies will not pay for wellness checks. Most folks go with the principle, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Ahh. Denial and ignorance is bliss.What you can do is monitor your children’s bouts with physical illness. Do they seem to catch everything that is going around? Are they more susceptible to influenza than other children? Do they seem particularly mopey a lot of the time? The link between physical health and mental health symptoms is our body’s immune system.Think of the immune system as a futuristic “force field” around our bodies.We are attacked by more than 3000 airborne viruses every day. Every day! Thankfully, almost all of them bounce off that force field called our immune system. Now, when a person’s physical health is at risk, the effectiveness of their immune system goes down. Similarly, when a person’s mental health is at risk, their immune system goes down. So, people with mental health issues tend to get physically sicker than people without mental health issues. The key is preventive care.This will lead to positive check-ups both physically and mentally. Such preventive care includes getting restful sleep, adults at least 7 ½ hours per night, kids up to 10 hours per night. Also, eat right, three meals a day, balanced with protein, carbs, and lots of green, leafy veggies (the proverbial “brain food”). Finally, get off your butt. Regular exercise and/or activity not only makes your body more efficient, it burns off anxiety and is an antidote for depression. For children, I can’t say enough about structured sports activity, whether its school or recreational sports teams. Studies are very clear that such activities improve children’s self-esteem, responsibility, social activity, and general, positive character traits. Is it a good idea to also get mental wellness checks? By all means yes. Good for you and for your family. Also, make a family plan for preventive care to keep the immune system operating at peak capacity. ■ Dr. Robinson is a licensed, clinical psychologist. His specialty is in school-clinical, child psychology, with emphasis on child development, parenting and family counseling. He is also author of Teachable Moments: Building Blocks of Christian Parenting, now available nationwide in bookstores and on-line as an e-book.


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“Warning Advisory Against Hand-Washing”

I’m sure, as you were growing up, your parents admonished you to Always Wash Your Hands, and perhaps they added, Thoroughly, or,With Soap, Just Splashing Water Around Doesn’t Count. Well, I am here from the National Institute of Microbial Preservation to tell you: DO NOT. Your keeping your hands unwashed is nothing short of a Moral obligation. Did you know that, this very instant, you have Over 4,000 species of bacterial friends living all over your hands? Imagine Little bacteria families, the bacteria father kissing his bacterial daughter Before going off to his bacterial job somewhere on your left ring finger. Well, perhaps these bacteria colonizing your hands do not necessarily form A microcosm of society. A jungle, perhaps, is a more accurate analogy – A nice jungle, of course, with nice monkeys and nice jaguars and nice Mosquitoes. Anyway, there is indisputably a great diversity of life All over those delightfully germy hands of yours, all flourishing with a great Dignity and a slightly-less great tendency to make people ill. But every time You irresponsibly wash your hands, these teeming masses of life are swept away Mina Yu

Original Poetry by Mina Yu

In a Great Flood which, to them, rivals that of Noah; every dollop of hand sanitizer Is bacterial blitzkrieg! But if you never wash your hands again, never scrub at them With a bar of clean soap until they feel fresh and lovely, why, then, you will be giving A much-needed home to these tiny creepy-crawlers, and I am sure that, despite Lacking a brain altogether, they will be incredibly grateful to you.They’ll hang pictures Of your face on their bacterial walls! The prices of the bacterial properties on your hands Will hike to unseen levels! They’ll write your name in their bacterial textbooks and sing Your name in their bacterial songs! (Maybe they’ll even forget To make you sick!) ■ Mina Yu is a junior at Oconee County High School. She loves to write poetry and prose in a variety of different genres. When she isn’t writing, you can probably find her curled up in a corner with a book or playing a very odd woodwind instrument called a bassoon.


Athens-Oconee Parent

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skin deep


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By Jocelyn Ann Lieb, MD, FAAD



scar is an unavoidable result of incision or injury to the skin. Unsightly as it may be, a scar is a near-miraculous example of the body’s ability to heal itself.The appearance of a scar is dependent on many factors – the size and depth of the wound as well as the individual’s age, genes, and skin pigmentation. “Many scars fade to near invisibility on their own over a period of months,” says Dr. Jocelyn Lieb of Advanced Dermatology, P.C. “But some disfiguring scars do not fade and cause emotional and physical discomfort long after the initial wound has healed. Fortunately, steps can be taken to reduce the severity of a scar and, although it can’t always removed entirely, there are a range of treatments that can minimize the scar and make it more consistent with surrounding skin.” A scar forms when there has been damage to the deep, thick layer of skin called the dermis. As the skin heals, the new collagen fibers that replace the damaged tissue have a different protein composition than the original tissue, which causes the new skin to have a different texture and appearance than surrounding skin.There are different types of scars. Most are flat and pale.When too much collagen is produced, the scar may be red and raised (hypertrophic) and if the raised scar extends beyond the boundaries of the original wound, it is known as a keloid scar. Contracture scars result from burns; as they tighten, they can restrict movement and may affect underlying muscles and nerves. Cystic acne and chickenpox scars are often pitted or indented (atrophic). Treatments to Improve the Appearance of Scars “If, despite your best efforts and the passage of time, you are still bothered by the appearance of a scar, your dermatologist can suggest a course of treatment appropriate for the severity and characteristics of the scar,” says

Dr. Lieb. “Options range from topical applications to surgery.” A silicon-based gel or a silicon gel sheet that is pressed on the skin can help flatten a swollen, raised scar. Silicon gel sheeting can also be helpful as the wound is healing, leading to a thinner, softer, less red and less painful scar. Injections of corticosteroids are used to soften and flatten keloid and hypertrophic scars. Filler injections can raise sunken scars to the level of surrounding skin. Dermabrasion and laser therapy are different methods that achieve similar results by removing the surface layers of the skin.They are used on raised scars. Surgery can alter a scar’s shape or make it less visible.The scar may be removed completely and the new wound closed carefully (excision) or a series of small incisions can re-orient the scar so it better follows the natural folds of the skin and is less noticeable (Z-plasty). A skin graft may be used when a large area of skin has been lost. For keloid scars that are resistant to corticosteroid injections, there is a new procedure called the Cryoshape. It freezes the keloid from the center and causes all or most of it to fall off, causing improvement. It is not yet covered by insurance. “Any injury or trauma to the skin can cause a scar,” Dr. Lieb concludes. “If it is small or can be easily concealed, a scar may not be troubling. But for those that make people selfconscious and cause emotional distress, steps can be taken to minimize the effects.” ■

Jocelyn Ann Lieb, M.D. F.A.A.D., is board certified in dermatology and is a member of the New York Academy of Medicine, the American Medical Association and the American Academy of Dermatology.

TIPS TO MINIMIZE SCARRING “How you treat a wound can make a big difference in the appearance of the scar after the wound heals,” says Dr. Lieb. Here are the most important preventive steps: • Don’t let the wound get soaking wet but keep it moist with a light application of petroleum jelly. • Don’t use home remedies or overthe-counter lotions, creams or ointments that purport to prevent scarring. Most, including the popular vitamin E, don’t work and many have ingredients that can be irritating or cause an allergic reaction. • Keep the area clean with a gentle cleanser. • Don’t use soap and don’t scrub. Pat dry. • Let the wound breathe. Cover it with a thin, light bandage that allows air to circulate; change the bandage daily. • Avoid sun exposure, which can make scarring worse. • When a scab forms, don’t touch it! Picking at a scab will impede healing and might cause scarring that would otherwise not have occurred. 15


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Ongoing ■ Athens-Clarke County Library Storytime Story program for children ages 18 months to 5 years and their caregiver. Lively time of sharing books, songs, puppets, nursery rhymes, early literacy and preschool activities. Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 9:30am and 10:30am, 613-3650,

■ Oconee County Library Storytime Storytime is for preschool aged children and their caregivers. Come for stories, songs, movement, crafts, and fun! Free and open to the public.Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 10am and 11am, 769-3950,

■ Fantastic Fridays A fun program to take your kids to on rainy days or just to get out of the house. Parents are required to stay and are responsible for leading their kids through various obstacle courses and fun! This program meets on Fridays. Bishop Park, 10:00-11:30am, $5$7.50/child, ages 10 months-4 years, (No program 3/10 or 4/14), 613-3589

■ Georgia Renaissance Festival April 15th - June 4, Saturdays and Sundays plus Memorial Day,

■ Chess Club Every Wednesday in March from 5-6 pm - All experience levels (including beginners) welcome. Ages 7 and up. Oconee County Library, 769-3950,

■ Knit Class KnitLits: Knitters of all levels are invited to have fun, share ideas, and knit, knit, knit! Beginning knitters are encouraged to attend. Ages 16 and up.Thursdays at the Bogart Library, 6-8pm, 770-725-9443,

■ LLL Breastfeeding Support Group Parents gather to support each other in breastfeeding, discuss parenting-related issues, and meet others in their community. Accredited La Leche Leauge Leaders are available to answers questions and concerns. Tuesdays 10-11:30am,The Natural Baby, 1590 Prince Avenue

■ Babies & Beasties Series Join us for a series of classes structured for toddlers and their parents to learn about the world around them through hands-on activities, hikes and crafts. Ages 18 months-2 years, 16

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Compiled by Chris Parsons

Some events, dates and times are subject to change. Please call individual event organizers to confirm schedules. All area codes are 706 unless otherwise noted.

with accompanying adult. Sandy Creek Nature Center May 4, 11, 18, 25, 10-10:45am, pre-register. $12-$18, 613-3615

tume parade! Costumes Encouraged. For children ages 3-11 and their caregivers. AthensClarke County Library, 1-4pm, 613-3650

■ Divorce Care

8 ACC Leisure Services Summer Program Registration

Topics include: facing anger, dealing with sadness/depression, loneliness, forgiveness, finances, moving on, and more. Sundays 4-6pm through 4/30. Grace Fellowship, $35. 769-4001

April 2017 1 The Bears’ Party We are throwing a birthday party for our bears! DJ turns 14 and Athena and Yonah turn 7.We’ll celebrate by offering the bears special birthday treats and presents, which they will receive at 2:30pm, don’t miss it! There will be treats (while supplies last) and crafts for party guests as well. Make sure to sign the bears’ birthday card! This party is free and fun for the whole family. Memorial Park, Bear Hollow Zoo, 2-4pm, free, 613-3580

1 Bunny Brunch at the Classic Center Join us for a delicious brunch buffet, photos with the Easter Bunny, an Easter egg hunt, a craft project and more! There’s no better way to hop into Spring! 10 a.m. - 12 p.m.,The Classic Center Athena Ballroom.Tickets are $20 for children, $25 for adults, and free for infants one and under.Visit and click on “Buy Tickets” then “Bunny Brunch.”

4 The Dragon King Puppet Show Join us at the Oconee Civic Center for an epic puppet show for all ages:The Dragon King! Free and open to the public, thanks to the Oconee County Library Friends. 4 p.m. 769-3950,

7 Family Program “Froggie Spring Fling” Join us for an evening of searching for amphibians. A quick introduction is done inside about local amphibians and then we will search the property for a few. Bring a flashlight and wear closed toed shoes. Sandy Creek Nature Center, ages 4-adult, 78:30pm, $2-$3, must pre-register. Children 13 and under must be accompanied by an adult. 613-3615

8 2nd Annual Fairy & Elf Festival Spend a magical day of family fun including a host of fantastical crafts, storytelling, fairy house building, shadow puppets and a cos-

Athens-Clarke County Leisure Services Summer Camp online registration begins Saturday, 4/8 at 9am for Athens-Clarke County residents. Non-residents may register starting Monday, 4/10 at noon. All registration takes place at

14 Canopy Studio Homecoming Show Canopy Studio celebrates 15 years in Athens with our Homecoming Show, featuring fabulous past and current aerial performers. 8-9 pm, 160-6 Tracy St., visit for more information.

15 Breakfast with the Bunny This family event will include continental breakfast, crafts and activities for children, and a chance to meet and have a photo taken with the Easter Bunny himself. Children under 3 years of age are free.Two time slots available. Memorial Park, 9-9:45am or 10-10:45am. $5.00-$7.50 Pre-register at athensclarke

15 Friends of Five Points Easter Egg Hunt Bring your family to see the Easter Bunny and participate in an Easter Egg Hunt sponsored by the Friends of Five Points Neighborhood Organization and Athens-Clarke County Leisure Services.The hunt will be held at Memorial Park in Athens at 11 am. Free.

15 Puppet Exploration Come and play with and explore all of Miss Rebecca’s puppets in this creative playtime. Make up stories, make new friends, and put on your own show! All ages. Free. Oconee County Library, 2pm, 769-3950

17 Oconee Parks and Rec. Summer Programs Registration Oconee County Parks and Recreation Department’s Summer Programs registration begins on Monday, 4/17 at 8am online or in the park office. Register for Summer Day Camp and a variety of summer sports.

22 Super Spring Saturdays In addition to strawberry picking, enjoy the petting zoo, hayrides, cow train, and more! For a complete list of activities check out

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More events & family fun on our calendar at! Search by date, category, venue and more • Download events directly to your mobile device • Share on social media Call 769-0627 to verify weather cancelations and strawberry picking availability.Washington Farms, 10am-4pm, 5691 Hog Mountain Road, Bogart. Also on 4/29, 5/6, 5/13

22 Athens Academy Festival Day Join us for a fun carnival that’s open to the entire community! We’ll have a musical performance by the Pre/Lower School students, followed by games and booths including a dunking booth, face painting, rock climbing wall, inflatables, laser tag, cake walk, and much more! Tickets and wristbands available for purchase that day. Athens Academy, 10am1pm, 549-9225

28-29 AOC Twilight Criterium + Kids Fun Zones Fun-filled, family-friendly weekend that includes professional road bike racing, a long distance bike ride, a 5K run, lots of special events for kids, and more! Saturday’s Kids Fit & Fun Zones offer hands-on activities, moon walks, bouncy castles, fitness booths and more; a Big Wheel race and Kids Criterium will take place the morning of April 29, with a Kids Fun Run held in the evening.Visit for specific times of Athens Orthopedic Clinic Twilight events! Downtown Athens

29 In Dreams We Fly! A Dia Celebration Join us for this special bi-lingual storytime as we celebrate Dia: Day of the Book – Day of the Child! We’ll share amazing stories from different cultures about children flying. Help us make a giant mural of children flying over Athens. Ages 3-11 and their caregiver. AthensClarke County Library, 11am, 613-3650,

May 2017 13 Oconee Library Family Fun Day Free fun for the whole family including a petting zoo, moonwalk, crafts, music, games, and more. Pick up your reading log and you can earn prizes for reading all summer long. Oconee County Library, 10am-1pm, 7693950,

13 Movie in the Park The family-friendly outdoor movie will begin at 8:45pm. Picnics welcome! Visit for more information. Herman C. Michael Park.

13 Sign Up! Build a Better World Summer Reading Program Pick up a reading log at your local library between 5/13 and 8/2 and earn prizes for reading or having someone read books to you. Ages 0-11. For more information visit

22 Celebrate Earth Day Sandy Creek Nature Center will be hosting an Earth Day celebration. Event includes selfguided scavenger hunts, crafts, an animal encounter and other fun activities to learn how to protect our planet. Come for a few minutes or a couple of hours. No registration is required. 1-3pm, 613-3615

22 Pitch, Hit and Run This competition is open to all boys and girls. Winners from each group (7/8, 9/10, 11/12, & 13/14) will have the opportunity to progress to a sectional, regional and national competition. No pre-registration is necessary. A waiver must be signed on site for participation. Bogart Sports Complex, 10:30am-1:30pm, 769-3965

22 Money Smart Kids Saving money doesn’t have to be a daunting task. Come join the Money Smart Kids to start saving the fun way! With special guest Sharon Tan. For children ages 5-11 and their caregivers. Athens-Clarke County Library, 11am, 613-3650 17

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A Sad Farewell to Laura Conroy


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be selfaware

By Liz Conroy


FROM TOP: Laura Conroy practicing on silks at Canopy Studio (PHOTO BY MIKE CONROY). Laura coaching children as they perform for an audience in a trapeze class at Canopy Studio (PHOTO BY DAN LONG). Her parents, Mike and Liz Conroy, share a proud moment after Laura graduated with honors in Spanish and linguistics in December 2015. She gets a kiss from her older sister, Mary Conroy Almada (at right). 18

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ur 25-yearold daughter, Laura Conroy, passed away in the early hours of Sunday, October 30.The weekend before, she performed in five public shows at Canopy Studio doing a challenging triples pole piece. After the last show on Sunday, October 23, she showed me her bruises and raw shins where the metal pole had scraped her skin. “Mom, I hurt. I’m tired. I need calories,” she pleaded. “I can do calories,” I replied, and took her and her boyfriend to The Grit for a healthy supper. Laura needed rest and healing, but how can anyone slow down a shooting star? Soaring on the trapeze, the pole, and silks was her passion. She loved teaching others to do the same.The next weekend, on the warm evening of Saturday, October 29, she led the Wild Rumpus parade with fellow aerialists from Canopy. In their shiny purple wigs, they performed on the trapeze by City Hall. It was physically demanding, but she had no water with her. By midnight, she was

hungry, tired, and severely dehydrated. Upon returning to her house, she gulped wine and had a heated argument with her boyfriend.Then she made a choice…and her death made no sense. She loved life. From early childhood on, Laura loved all forms of life…from wildlife to horses and dogs, and, of course, people. She spent the first seven years of her life on the banks of Bear Creek in Jackson County before our family had to move due to reservoir construction.We were a homeschooling family for several years and traveled to other countries with my husband. Both of our children grew interested in different cultures and developed a keen sense of adventure. In her earliest years, Laura revealed a temper inside the home and intense shyness outside the home. As a preschooler, she developed confidence in small group settings at UGA’s McPhaul Center. After homeschooling, she attended Athens Montessori where she dressed in black as a middleschooler and read horror

stories. I expressed concern about this Goth phase and the self-harm aspects associated with it. One teacher reassured me, “She’s young and can’t do piercing, tattooing, and other behaviors of this subculture. In my experience, these are the kids who have so much expression and creativity that it will surprise you.” And it did! Laura enjoyed the performing arts in her experiences with theater and later with Canopy Studio. As a high school student as Clarke Central, she enjoyed acting in plays under the guidance of drama teacher Harriet Anderson. As a 17year-old, she learned trapeze and aerial silks at Canopy. She channeled her intensity into creative activities. Perhaps Laura had underlying mental health issues related to her intensity, risktaking, and sudden temper. Yet in her twenties she developed into a calmer, mature young woman. It was a joy to watch her blossom, particularly as she became a beloved instructor at Canopy and taught students of all ages to perform on the trapeze, aerial silks, or the

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A.L.T. How this self-care term helps teach kids an awareness of their own emotional and physical needs

pole. She adored children and teens. She even led outreach efforts to Athens’ Pinewood Estates North mobile-home neighborhood to bring children into trapeze classes at Canopy who otherwise wouldn’t have the opportunity. She was a celebrity among the youngsters of Athens who always waved and called to her wherever she went. Several years ago, I learned about our younger daughter’s main trigger issues: low blood sugar, sensitivity to dairy and other foods, and the need for adequate protein and rest.While attending UGA, Laura was diagnosed with reactive hypoglycemia. Our family doctor explained that Laura’s severe blood sugar crashes meant she must always be careful about her food intake. She counseled Laura about the critical importance of eating healthy food on a regular basis including an adequate amount of protein, especially at night. Laura followed this guidance carefully most of the time. But not on the night of October 29. Laura had been rehearsing, performing, teaching and

volunteering for weeks. On October 29 at the Wild Rumpus parade in downtown Athens, she was pushing herself to the limit.The lack of nourishment, water, and adequate rest created a dangerous situation for her. She was off-center and lacking in good judgement. According to an emergency room physician, drinking alcohol in such a condition is like drinking poison. “It goes straight to the brain,” he said. “There is nothing in the stomach to slow it down.” One of our friends, a recovering alcoholic, recently told me how he learned to heed certain warning signs to avoid risky behavior. In Alcoholics Anonymous, he explained, the self-care term is H.A.L.T. - HUNGRY, ANGRY, LONELY, and TIRED. These are conditions which can trigger dangerous behaviors such as drinking, taking drugs, binge eating, or threatening harm to self or others. H.A.L.T. is not the whole answer, but it may help children learn to watch for warning signs within their own bodies.Young people need to know how to express them-

selves when they feel these conditions.Those who are aware of their emotional and physical needs have a better chance of getting those needs met before reacting in harmful ways. Laura was an example of someone who met the H.A.L.T. triggers. She was hungry, dehydrated and exhausted.Then the argument with her boyfriend brought out her anger. Impulsive behavior meant her death.Yet, she would want to protect children and teens from similar harm.Teaching children and teens to watch for these triggers may help provide some protection as they face challenges throughout their own lives. ■

Donations to www.laura pay for aerial-class scholarships for members of the migrant Latino community in the Athens area.

Liz Conroy is a freelance writer in Athens who misses Laura with all her heart.


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life lessons


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By Kimberly Wise

To the Daughter I Will Never Have,


i.We haven’t met. Nor will we ever meet.You aren’t real.You have two brothers who I am sure you would love, and idolize, and annoy – but that’s not something that we will ever get to see. Growing up, I always thought I would have a daughter.Your name would be Tabitha Awdry (Yes, I was into creative spelling before it was cool. It’s called being a bad speller and it’s probably genetic.) You would have red hair, violet eyes, and be everything I wasn’t: strong, brave, athletic, beautiful. In retrospect, I think I created an imaginary friend. And I most certainly would have filled you will all my worries and fears and probably would have made you hate me because I was forcing you to be everything I wanted you to be and not who you wanted to be. So, guess we all dodged a bullet there. But there are still things I would want my daughter to know. There are things I think all girls need to know, things I wished I had known or believed as a little girl. I may not have you to hold and to teach but I have some pretty awesome friends with some pretty awesome girls so I guess I am writing this to them. And, who knows, maybe I will pick some stuff up on the way. Don’t let Disney ruin your life. Now, I am not saying that the company will literally come to your door and steal your birthday presents.What I am saying is that you aren’t a


Athens-Oconee Parent

princess and that’s okay. And, in fact, you wouldn’t want to be a princess. Did you know that in the British royal family you have to stop eating when the Queen is done? Did you know that a blooded princess always gets to arrive before a commoner turned princess? How is either of those things fair? But, going back to Disney – the movies are great.The parks are beautiful. But you don’t need a prince to save you and you don’t need to be a princess to do great things. Kisses and junk. Just going to throw this out there and say when you are ready to kiss your first person, you will know. Don’t rush it.The person you kiss should be kind and sweet and make your heart miss a beat when they lean in close to you. Don’t worry if it seems like everyone else has already kissed a person. So what? You only get one first kiss – make it special. And, on the same topic, when

you are ready to go beyond kisses, you will also know. No one gets to make that choice for you. And you can always say that you aren’t ready. If the person is the right person, they will understand. These are not your forever friends. And the friends you make next year won’t be either. When you are young, friends come and go. They move, they move on, they change and grow. And you are doing the same thing.Yes, it hurts when friendships die or drift away but these aren’t your forever friends.You will make more friends. At each stage of your life you will make new friends, friends that complement the person you are at the time. This isn’t to say that friends don’t last; it’s just saying that there is no reason to stay with a friend if they are hurting you or making you sad. Like all things, if the person is meant to be a forever friend,

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Sierra, 8; Arianna, 12; Jaylah, 10; Casidy, 5; Claire, 5,Waverly, 3

YOU ARE YOU! you will know it when you look back and don’t remember a time without them. Be creative. Art is in your blood. It’s in everyone’s blood. It may come through in different ways but everyone has the capacity to create beauty.You could paint a picture, sculpt a pot, or play the trombone – it doesn’t matter what you chose because it is all beautiful. The world needs art. It needs passion. A little story here: During WWII, Churchill was asked to cut funding to the arts and his reply was, “Then what are we fighting for?” What are we fighting for if there is nothing to come home to? It may take time to discover your talent.You may discover that your means of creating art is something that isn’t loud or flashy. It doesn’t matter. What you choose will make you happy and the world will be happier for it. Your body is yours.You are not “too fat” or “too tall.” You are you.This is the one body you will ever have.Treat it with kindness. Don’t deny yourself to attain a body that isn’t sustainable but don’t gorge in self-hatred, either. Make reasonable choices for yourself and things should work out ok.You are already pretty enough and strong enough. Have the confidence in this and everything else will follow. At the same time, you are not a fragile egg.You are a child of muscle and bone and can take quite a bit of abuse. So, jump of the ledge and roll down a grassy hill. Climb trees. Learn to ski. Dare yourself to push yourself to discover what your body can do. So you break a bone or get a scar? I would rather be bruised and happy than a doll on the shelf.

Science is real. And it is hard. Confession: I am horrible at science. I barely passed my science classes and am still unsure of atoms and their compositions. But, I believe in it.You should too.You should also study science and math and everything else that might be hard but vital.You should question how the world works and you should ask why things are the way they are.The only time we fail is when we give up and we hide in our ignorance.

A few other words of advice

• Never make a nest out of toilet paper on a public restroom toilet. If it looks gross, don’t use it, but don’t be like a bird. • It’s ok to stand up for yourself but don’t be abusive to others while doing so. • Never drive with a drunk person, even if they are “ok.” • Get a job in high school so you understand a little more about life when you are older. • Save your money and don’t buy collectable stuffed animals. FYI: they don’t increase in value. Love you Sweetie! ■ Kimberly Wise is a mother of two rambunctious sons and enjoys quilting, baking, and reading.


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why am I sad?


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By John Norris, MD, PhD


Post-Partum Depression can affect both mothers and fathers


ecently, Alexandra, a mother to two young sons, ages 18 months and 5 months, wrote a post on Instagram that was noted in an article on the Huffington Post parenting blog. Alexandra wrote, in part, “No one warns you about the dark sides of motherhood and pregnancy…no one gives you a heads up on how much you change physically and mentally after you become a mother. It’s been a long and hard postpartum ride for me…cheers to you mamas who are battling postpartum depression and still getting up every day for your children! Cheers to you mamas who still cry about the marks on your skin from birthing your babies!” Speaking to the Huffington Post, Alexandra added, “I wish that I would have known that there is more 22

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than just feeling in love when you have your baby – there are a lot of other feelings when you enter motherhood.When I had my babies, I felt so guilty for feeling other feelings besides love. I wish I would have known that all the feelings I was feeling were valid. I want other moms to know that postpartum depression and these physical changes can happen to anyone…this is where I am now, but it isn’t where I started. Don’t lose hope.” Alexandra is not unique in her struggles.The delivery of a baby is a biologically and psychologically stressful event for all participants. Many parents struggle with their feelings for the first two weeks following delivery.These early emotions, known as the “postpartum blues,” are normal, are typically mild, require no treatment, and last for 2 weeks or less.Those parents who

have more severe or longer symptoms may have postpartum depression. In the U.S., about 10 percent of moms and 8 percent of dads (YES, dads can be affected too!) suffer from postpartum depression. When you include more mild depressive symptoms – those that don’t quite reach the threshold of major depressive disorder – the prevalence increases to about 1 in 7 new parents. This makes depression one of the most common medical complications of pregnancy! Maternal suicide, though uncommon in absolute numbers, is a more common cause of maternal death than post-partum bleeding or pregnancy-induced high blood pressure. Risk factors for postpartum depression associated with the parents include: a previous history of depression, depression just

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before or during the pregnancy, a family history of depression, a difficult delivery, being single, poor social support, financial difficulties, stressful life events, or problems breastfeeding. Depression risk factors associated with the baby include: Stillbirth; neonatal death; very low birth-weight baby; pre-term infants; unintended pregnancy; infants who exhibit excessive crying, difficult temperaments or who are hard to console; and infants with irregular sleep patterns. Finally, one of the strongest risk factors for depression in either parent is depressive symptoms in your partner. The precise cause of postpartum depression remains unclear but seems to include genetic risks, changes in hormone concentrations related to pregnancy, imbalances in certain brain chemicals, and adverse life events. Depressive symptoms may start before the pregnancy, during pregnancy, or following delivery.When presenting after delivery, symptoms may occur immediately, or not for several months. Symptoms in women with postpartum depression are similar to non-pregnancy related depression and include: Sadness; low energy; inability to experience pleasure in typically pleasurable activities; low self-esteem; feelings of inadequacy; difficulty concentrating; guilt; anxiety; eating too much or too little; sleep problems; and recurrent thoughts of death. Symptoms in depressed men are similar but also include higher levels of irritability, expressed anger, and a tendency to withdraw from partner interactions during times of stress. Unfortunately, postpartum depression is often further complicated by other mental health problems including: Anxiety; substance abuse; eating disorders; obsessive-compulsive disorder; and post-traumatic stress disorder. Also, there is a high recurrence risk, both with a subsequent pregnancy and during non-pregnant times. As expected, the presence of depressive symptoms in mom, dad, or both, has a strong negative impact on family functioning. Affected mothers and fathers often exhibit: Poor self-care; impaired bonding with their new baby (and any older children); a tendency to breastfeed less, or stop breast-feeding sooner; provide inadequate care and feeding of their infant; take fewer safety precautions with their baby; read to their infants less; and spank their children more.These negative parenting behaviors, occurring as they do at a critical time in development, have profound effects on the health, behavior, and learning of the babies, and may lead to the child’s inability to form appropriate social relationships later in life. Under severe conditions, these early social impairments in the babies may persist into adulthood! Finally, marital stress, likely already high due to new economic concerns, the arrival of a new family member, the changes in sexual dynamics, the need to breastfeed etc., may be further increased by parental depression until it becomes overwhelming for the relationship. Effective treatments for postpartum depression are available and range from simple life-style changes – adequate diet, exercise and sleep – to increased social supports, counseling, medications and electroconvulsive therapy. Postpartum depression is common, biologically-based, can exist in both mothers and fathers, will impair parenting abilities, is potentially life-threatening, has a high rate of recurrence, and is treatable. So if you, or someone you care about, may have depression during or following a pregnancy, PLEASE speak with your doctor, or encourage them to do so. Effective treatments are available! Failure to seek help may lead to parental suicide, infant death, the breakup of a relationship, or the long-term impairment of the biological, social and psychological health of a young child. ■ Dr. John Norris has had 16 years of experience in a general pediatric office practice. He is the Assistant Clinical Professor for the AU/UGA Medical Partnership.


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PART ONE: 2017

SUMMER CAMPS Consider these great camps on the following pages that Athens and Oconee County have to offer for children of all ages during the summer! We have tried to include the important information for each camp. However, due to changes that may have occurred after press time, please call individual camps or visit their web sites for the most up-to-date details.


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2017 SUMMER CAMPS PART ONE Alice DePass Studio of Dance

Athens Academy

TINKERBELL’S BALLET CAMP Ages 2.5-3.5; June 5-7; 9:30-11:00am; $65 (includes snack and craft materials). Calling all tiny dancers! Tinkerbell invites all of her fairy friends to join us for this special introduction to ballet, which includes dance instruction, movement games, dress-up, story time, and fun fairy crafts! CINDERELLA’S DANCE & ACTING CAMP Ages 3-6; June 12-14; 9:30-11:00am; $65 (includes snack and craft materials). Come join us as we explore the classic fairytale of Cinderella through dance, pantomime, dressup, crafts, and storytelling! BELLE’S BALLET CAMP: New this year! 2 sessions to choose from! Ages 3-8 (divided into 2 groups according to age/experience); $65 (includes snack and craft materials). Belle invites all of her friends to come join us for ballet class, dress-up, story time, princess crafts, and lots of fun! • Session I: June 19-21; 9:30-11:00am • Session II: July 17-19 (Monday-Wednesday) from 9:30-11:00am ELSA AND ANNA’S DANCE & ACTING CAMP Ages 3-8 (divided into 2 groups according to age/experience); June 26-28; 9:30-11:00am; $65 (includes snack and craft materials). Elsa and Anna invite all of their friends to come join us for ballet, pantomime, dressup, story time, snowy crafts, and lots of fun! RAPUNZEL’S DANCE & ACTING CAMP Ages 3-6; July 10-12; 9:30-11:00am; $65 (includes snack and craft materials). Rapunzel invites all of her princess friends to come join us for ballet, pantomime, dress-up, story time, princess crafts, and lots of fun!

Summer Camps & Summer Programs Athens Academy offers over 50 different athletic, arts, technology, and academic programs for rising K5-12th graders as well as a sixweek Summer Day Camp for ages 4 to rising 5th graders. Our camps are open to all students in our community.Visit athens for details, updates, and registration. New camps are added frequently!

www.depassstudio 706-769-1177 depassfrontdesk


Athens-Oconee Parent


Athens-Clarke County Leisure Services Day Camps & Mini Camps REGISTRATION takes place online at If you haven’t done so already, create your free online account today! ACC residents may register starting Saturday, April 8 at 9:00 a.m. Non-residents may register starting Monday, April 10 at noon. DAY CAMPS • Camp-a-looza Gymnastics Day Camps May 30-July 28, 9am-4pm, ages 6-12, Bishop Park • East Athens Summer Day Camp: “Back to the Future: Where Recreation and Education Meet” June 5-July 28, 9am-4pm, ages 6-12, East Athens Community Center • Lay Park Summer Day Camp: “Camp Fun-Tastic” June 5-July 28, 9am-4pm, ages 6-12 • Memorial Park Summer Day Camp: “Occupation Exploration” June 5-July 28, 9am-4pm, ages 6-12 • Rocksprings Park Summer Day Camp: “MACH 1: Multi-Adventure Challenge” June 5-July 28, 9am-4pm, ages 6-12 • Sandy Creek Day Camp June 5-July 21, 9am-4pm, ages 7-12 • Sandy Creek Teen Camp June 5-July 21, 9am-4pm, ages 13-15 TEENS IN ACTION June 12-21, 9am-4pm, ages 13-15, Sandy Creek Nature Center ZOO CAMP Ages: 7-9 (June 5-30) and ages 10-12 (July 328), 9am-4pm, Bear Hollow Zoo at Memorial Park

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THEATRE CAMPS • Teen Encore Camp June Session June 5-9, ages 13-18, 9am-4pm, Quinn Hall at Memorial Park • Musical Theatre Performance Program: “The Stories of Sheherazade” June 12-23, 9am-4pm, ages 8-12, Quinn Hall at Memorial Park • Teen Encore Camp July Session July 10-14, ages 13-18, 9am-4pm, Quinn Hall at Memorial Park • Theatre Performance Camp: “The Emperor’s New Clothes” July 17-28, 9am-4pm, ages 8-12, Quinn Hall at Memorial Park


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WEEK 4: June 19-23, “Do It Yourself: Homesteading” WEEK 5: June 26-30, “Welcome to the Jungle” (*week 5 is for mini-campers ages 3-5) WEEK 6: July 10-14, “To The Beach” WEEK 7: July 17-21, “Space Dreams and Shooting Stars” WEEK 8: July 24-29, “Fairytales and Magic” Please call for questions and registration: 706-286-8449

Lego Engineering Day Camp Our Engineering Day Camp using LEGO elements will ignite your child’s engineering capabilities using the Lego bricks they already love! Build and operate a motorized Lego crane. Create and race your own Giant Bug Walker. Build a pet Dog-Bot. Use your Lego knowledge and our brick collection to engineer one epic summer! Camp Dates: June 12-15 with two sessions: Krising through 3rd graders are 9 am-noon and 4th-rising through 7th graders are 1-4 pm. Cost: $150 CONTINUED ON PAGE 28

ART MINI CAMPS A variety of Art Camps from June 5-July 28, for ages 4-16 Lyndon House Arts Center, 706-613-3623 DANCE MINI CAMPS A variety of Dance Camps from May 30-July 21, for ages 4-18 East Athens Educational Dance Center, 706-613-3624 SPORTS MINI CAMPS A variety of sports camps including Kidventures Gymnastics, Skate,Tennis, Soccer, Sportstime, and Triatholon, May 30-Aug. 4 for ages 3-17 with a variety of weeks and times at different parks. 706-613-3800

Frog Stomp Come spend the week at Frog Stomp! Each week will explore a new theme; artists will create one masterpiece painting and one 3-D piece. Along with these, artists will participate in several small creative play projects that will be fun and messy while developing skills that will improve their masterpieces and encourage collaboration and expression.We will also be creating an “eye spy scavenger sketchbook” that we take out each day during lunch and take a walk around Chase Park. Artists should wear clothes that are for messy fun, and bring a lunch and refillable water bottle (snack provided). Camp day starts at 10:00 am and ends at 1:00 pm. Early drop off and late pick up available. Cost: $200 Ages: 5-11yrs.(except for Mini-Camper week) Times: 10am-1pm (aftercare extended day is available 9am-2pm) Schedule: WEEK 1: May 29-June 2, “Under the Sea” WEEK 2: June 5-9, “Upcycling” WEEK 3: June 12-16, “Movement and Simple Machines” (*week 3 is for advanced ages, 6-11)


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2017 SUMMER CAMPS PART ONE Location: Watkinsville First United Methodist Church, 1331 New High Shoals Rd.,Watkinsville, GA 30677 Contact: Erin Duke, Registration/more information:

New Moon Summer Adventure Camp Travel to different locations throughout Georgia and South Carolina. Activities include hiking, swimming, boating, ropes course, trips to museums, farms, zoos and much more! Ages 6-12. $175 per week covers all activity and travel expenses. Operating weeks of June 12-16 and 19-23 and July 10-14 and 17-21 from 8:30am-5pm. To register contact Cindy Jones 706-310-0013

Oconee County Parks and Recreation Department Join the fun as a fantastic season of activities is currently being planned for our SUPER HERO SUMMER! We offer opportunities in field trips, swimming, sports, crafts, games, nature walks, and much more! Weekly sessions: May 22 through July 28 Location: Herman C. Michael Park Eligibility: Camp is open to participants who are residents of Oconee County and have turned age 6 on or before September 1, 2017 or will complete Kindergarten during the 2016-2017 school year. Registration Information: Summer Registration for Summer Day Camps,Teen Extreme Camp and Summer Sports Camps begins Monday, April 17 at 8 a.m. at Herman C. Michael Park on a first come first served basis until all spaces are filled. Fees for Summer Day Camps and Teen Exteme Camp are $110 per session. First week’s payment is due in full at the time of registration. A $30 per child, per session, non-refundable deposit is due at registration to reserve any weekly session.The balance of the weekly fee will be due on the Friday preceding each session for which the child is enrolled. Summer Sports Camps include all-sports, basketball, baseball, football, golf, lacrosse girls camp, mountain bike, softball, soccer, speed and agility, volleyball, and Volunteer Oconee! camp. Ages and fees vary by camp.You can print an Oconee County summer sports camps chart at For complete information: 706-769-3965

Oconee Youth School of Performance At OYSP summer camp, we put on a show in a week! Two camp weeks to choose from: June 5-9 and June 26-30. Performance for parents at the end of each week! For more inform or to download a registration form, go to or email us at


Athens-Oconee Parent

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Rose of Athens Theatre Academy “Teaching Life Skills Through Stage Skills” Grades: 1st-12th Where: Seney-Stovall Chapel 201 N. Milledge Ave., Athens, GA When: June 5-June 23, 2017 (varying dates for different grades) • 9th-12th Grade High School Session: June 516, 2017 9:30 am-4:30 pm • 6th-8th Grade Middle School Session 1: June 5-9, 2017 9:30 am-4:30 pm • 6th-8th Grade Middle School Session 2: June 19-23, 2017 9:30 am-4:30 pm • 3rd-5th Grade Elementary Session 1: June 12-16, 2017 1:20 pm-4:30 pm • 3rd-5th Grade Elementary Session 2: June 19-23, 2017 9:30 am-12:30 pm • 1st Grade-2nd Grade Lower Elementary Session 1: June 12-16, 2017 9:30 am-12:30 pm


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Summer fun is just getting started! Join us in our May/June 2017 issue for family fun and summer camps part 2. For advertising information, email

For information contact: 706-340-9181

RUSH / This year we are working with to bring you the most fun STEM summer camps in Athens! Join us Monday - Friday from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm for trampoline fun as well as real life applications on Science,Technology, Engineering and Math using our foam cubes, trampolines, the ninja course and other games. Lunch and drinks are provided daily. The camps are broken down by age into groups of 10 so everyone gets special attention from our tutors. Camps start 6/5, 6/19, 7/10 and 7/17. Space is limited. Cost is $165. 706-548-4470

UGA Community Music School Private and group instruction for students ages 18 mos. to adult seniors. Available yearround. Private instruction in piano, voice, guitar, strings, brass, woodwinds, percussion, music theory, songwriting, and music composition. Group instruction available for guitar, piano, bluegrass and string chamber music. All styles of music available. 706-542-2894


’til we meet again

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Kids love to see their picture, and you’ll love the keepsake! Send your photos and info to facebook at Athens-Oconee Parent Magazine Sawyer, 8, and Collin, 8

Ellis, 2, and Owen, 5

Barrett, 7

Anna, 3 Mari, 6, Ella, 9, and Addy, 4

Clara, 4 months Laurel, 6, and Charlie, 3

Campbell, 5

Layla, 10 Amelia, 4, and Tucker, 1 1/2

Charlotte, 5, Oliver, 1, and Trey, 8. Happy First Birthday, Oliver!

Abigayle, 3

Matt (Dad), Paige (14), Laurie (Mom), Dominic (8), Justin, (10), and Chloe, (12)

Please support our advertisers who make this FREE family resource possible! Alice DePass Studio of Dance 28

Clarke County School District 19

High Shoals Fun Run 23

Piedmont/Athens Regional 32

Athens Academy 28

Frog Stomp 27 26

Pump It Up 24

ACC Leisure Services 26

Jennings Mill Drug Company 11

The Moore Center 3

Rush Trampoline Park 4

Athens Dentistry for Children 3

Linder & Linder Family Dentistry 9

Newell Orthodontics 23

S.R. Homes/Pebble Creek/Rowan Oak 31

Athens Family Vision/Dr. Springer 13

Manning Brothers 13

NE GA Health Departments 11

St. Mary’s Health Care System 2

Jennifer Boone 9

Heather McElroy 21

Oconee Co. Parks & Recreation 29

UGA Community Music School 27


Athens-Oconee Parent

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