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PREMIER

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afamily-friendly tailgating

AUG/SEPT 2010 • Volume 2 • Issue 4

the Doerings

family spotlight

back to school countdown

for the love of

the arts plus!

school uniforms

in Alachua County

it’s

Football

seaso

n!

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magazine and Laurel Housden Photography present: Nicole Irving Publisher

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Shane Irving Vice President Chris Wilson Managing Editor Leslie Vega Art Director Amy Keene Visual Designer and Coordinator Contributing Writers Wendy Joysen, Alison Walker, Kelly Day, Helen Kornblum, Dana Kamp, Janet Groene, Sondra Randon, Brooke Kelly, Kelsey McNiel, Jeannine Dupler, Tamara Herchel, Madison McNary, Ashley Hoover, Alexandra Bitton, Dan Griffin Editorial assistant: Christina Vila Contributing Photographers Laurel Housden Photography, Kelsey Lynn Photography, Verve Studio, Lifeprints Photography Sales Tracey Hardin, Shane Irving, Chris Wilson Web Master Julie Rezendes

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Mission Statement giggle magazine is a modern and refreshing magazine for the families and communities of Alachua County, Florida. With our sole purpose of keeping families and communities connected, giggle magazine will keep readers intrigued, informed and inspired, with up to date information and heartwarming stories. Irving Publications, LLC reserves the right to edit and/or reject any advertising. Irving Publications is not responsible for the validity of any claims made by its advertisers. Nothing that appears in giggle magazine may be reproduced in any way, without written permission. Opinions expressed by giggle writers are their own and do not necessarily reflect the publisher’s opinion. giggle magazine will consider all never before published outside editorial submissions. Irving Publications, LLC reserves the right to edit and/or reject all outside editorial submissions and makes no guarantees regarding publication dates.

irvingpublications 5745 SW 75th Street #286 Gainesville, FL 32608 p. 352.505.5821 f. 352.240.6499 www.gigglemag.com advertise@irvingpublications.com giggle magazine is registered trademark property of Irving Publications, LLC. All rights reserved. giggle magazine is published by Irving Publications, LLC. © 2010 al ac hua

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happy family • happy community

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DEC/JAN 2010 • Volume 1 • Issue 6

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happy family • happy community

12

56

31

every month

features

columns

10 Charity of the Month

12 For the Love

24 All Kidding Aside

Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

30 In The Kitchen

1st Annual Pie Contest

31 Giggle Stamp

Back to School lunchboxes

35 Health & Wellness Avoiding dehydration

38 Local Lifesavers Siblings and sharing

Tough questions answered about kids, family, school, parenting, and everything in between

of the Arts

19 Back to School Countdown 20 Backpack Safety

36 Legal Side of Things

Informing families of the important legal issues that affect them

23 School Uniforms

Alachua County’s new uniform policy

26 Family-Friendly Tailgating

TM

44 Organized Solutions

Professional organizer Helen Kornblum helps us find easy ways to keep our busy family lives organized.

32 Babysitting

A first job with huge responsibilities

42 Family Spotlight

Former UF football player, Chris Doering talks about family and football

46 Ladies’ Night Out

Denim and Diamonds party at Lang Jewelers

49 Giggle Dollars

Couponing to the extreme

53 For Dads. By Dads.

Making football a family affair

54 Why I Love Raising My Family in Gainesville

56 giggle’s World Wonders

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giggle Trips takes you on a trip to see the wonders of the world

UE • PLEA

ISS

on the cover For the Love of the Arts 12 Back to School 19 Countdown School Uniforms 23 Family-Friendly Tailgating 26 The Doerings 42

al achua

count y’s

PREMIER

FaMIly

MaGaZInE

®

happy family • happy community TM

AUG/SEPT 2010 • Volume 2 • Issue 4

afamily-friendly tailgating

the Doerings

family spotlight

back to school countdown

for the love of

the arts plus!

school uniforms

in Alachua County

it’ Foo s ll seastba on!

www.gigglemag.com

Cover model, Maryn of Gainesville Photo courtesy Laurel Housden Photography

S

If you live in Alachua County and are interested in receiving giggle magazine for free, visit our web site at gigglemag.com to subscribe now! giggle

magazine • aug/sept 2010

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Letter from the Publisher

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he days of summer are almost behind us. Soon we will be saying “goodbye” to pool parties and flip flops, and “hello” to homework, car pooling and alarm clocks. As the children spend every last minute soaking up one last breath of summertime fun, we parents are getting school supplies, back packs, thinking about lunch menus, bus schedules, and everything in between. My children have what seems to be an internal alarm clock malfunction. During the summer, eyes are bright and cheery before the sun comes up. But during the school year, there are heavy eyelids and procrastination through the morning routine. So, as our weeks of playtime, beach visits, and the lazy days of summer come to an end, giggle magazine prepares you and your kids (and mine, too!) for smooth sailing this school year! This year, Alachua County parents have an easier time shopping for their childrens’ wardrobes and getting dressed has gotten much easier, with the new public school uniform policy. Our school uniform feature will guide you in the right direction with contact information, a description of the new policies and even cute outfit ideas for kids of all ages.

Giggle tip: Try to remember to enforce the code from the start. Have your students’ personalities shine and let them wear shirts in their favorite color.

But getting the kids back into the groove can take a little longer than just a weekend, so our “Back to School Countdown” will help get your kids back into the swing of things within a few weeks. And don’t forget this issue’s “Organized

Solutions,” which will get you organized and ready for the new school year. We are thrilled to present our special feature on “For the Love of the Arts.” As school budgets are cut, it seems like the arts is always the first thing to go. We touch on what the schools are trying to do to instill the love for the arts in our children and how outside resources are helping to bridge the gap. Writer Kelsey McNeil and Verve Studio photographers detail the lives of local young artists, ranging from ballerinas to gymnasts, violinists to guitar players. With the start of school also comes football season in Alachua County. What better way to celebrate fall than with football! We take you to a family friendly tailgate and even give Dads a little advice in how to prepare their families with all the football knowledge to get them in the spirit of the game! And, we are so excited to have the Gators’ very own Chris Doering share tales of football and family in this issue’s Family Spotlight! So, as we prepare to embark upon another school year full of PTA meetings, soccer practice, and mounds of homework and tests, remember, the most important thing - family. Try to set aside a little time each night to talk and catch up! At our house, we try to have dinner together every night so we can hear all the great things the kids have done that day! (Now, sometimes dinner might come from our favorite take-out place. But hey, it’s still dinner!) It is great to see the excitement of the day in each of their faces!

aNicole Publisher

Photo above, Nicole tailgating with youngest son, Joshua

our cover cutie! Meet

Maryn

Our cover cutie is Maryn of Gainesville, Florida. k Her favorite book is “Olivia Saves the Circus” because Maryn, like Olivia, is Queen of the Trampoline! k Her favorite foods are pancakes, yogurt and fruit smoothies. k Her favorite lovey is a pink teddy bear, FranBear, named after a family friend. k Her first name is a combination of her mom’s name, Marisa, and her dad’s name, Darin. Originally, the name came about as a family joke when Darin and Marisa were just dating and far from having kids. But, when they found out they were having a girl, “Maryn” was the only name on which both of them could agree. Maryn’s middle name, Hope, is in honor of her great-grandmother, Ruth Hope, who was an Army nurse during World War II. Photo by Laurel Housden Photography

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in other giggle

news

bund le of s

Meet

joy

Meet Brooke + Bryce

Our newest additions to the giggle family. Congratulations to Alison and Scott. Photo by Laurel Housden Photography


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Cystic Fibrosis Foundation charity of the month

by brooke kelly Photos provided by the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

T

hirty thousand children and adults are living with cystic fibrosis in the United States.

Cystic fibrosis, according to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation’s Web site, is an inherited chronic disease. Sufferers experience a build up of a sticky mucus in the lungs which then hardens like cement causing multiple problems to the lungs and digestive system. Currently, there is no cure for cystic fibrosis. However, Angela Costa, director of special events for the Jacksonville chapter of the Foundation, said the nonprofit organization is making great progress towards finding a cure.

“The auction has everything from kids cards to jewelry to vacations to bid on,” said Costa. “It’s a fun event!” Last year, more than $78,000 were raised by the event. “When it comes to the Gators and Gainesville, you can’t go wrong,” Costa said. Costa said the success of the event would not be possible without the volunteers in Gainesville, who do everything from raising money to help the Foundation fund a cure, put on events, spread information about cystic fibrosis and find sponsorships in local communities.

“We’re three to five years from a cure, due to our genetic research, and we’re helping so many other diseases, like Parkinsons,” Costa explained. The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation is dedicated to finding funding for drugs, therapy and research in order to find a cure for the disease, said Costa. “Our mission is to find a cure for cystic fibrosis—that is what we do,” Costa said. The Jacksonville chapter of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation is a part of this effort. The chapter raises donations in North Florida, as far west as the Panhandle and as far south as Gainesville, said Costa. The foundation’s two annual events in Gainesville are the Great Strides Walk, which was held in April, and the Tailgate-Kick Off to a Cure. Gainesville’s Great Stride volunteers helped raise $50,000 for the Jacksonville chapter in 2010. “They exceeded [our fund raising goal] by $20,000. Huge strides were made. It was fabulous,” Costa said. In November, Costa is hoping Gainesville can do it again with Tailgate. Tailgate-Kick Off to a Cure, which is in its sixth year, will be held on Saturday, November 6 at the Touchdown Terrace at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. “It’s the place to be if you’re not traveling to the game,” Costa said. The event allows for families and fans to watch the FloridaVanderbilt game, while enjoying food from local vendors and taking part in a live and silent auction. Some vendors include Moe’s Southwest Grill, the Flying Biscuit Cafe, Adam’s Rib Co. and Rolls n’ Bowls.

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“We have awesome volunteers. I can’t thank the Gainesville community enough. They are fabulous,” said Costa. Tickets for “Tailgate-Kick Off to a Cure” can be purchased individually for $75. An “Orange and Blue” sponsor table for $500 seats four people and “Touchdown Sponsors” get a table seating for eight for $800. Visit www.cfftailgate.com. For more about the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, visit its web site www.cff.org.

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magazine


For the

Love of the Arts by kelsey mcniel Photos by Verve Studio

It’s the swipe of a brush...

the sweep of a hand and the swell of a deep-bellied drum. Within seconds, the arts can become a creative outlet for a child, a link to understanding a math lesson or an opportunity to make a friend. Inspiring confidence, discipline, perseverance, ambition and focus in a child, the arts give kids an unparalleled outlet to express themselves. In Alachua County, it’s thanks to private instructors, teachers, parents and Debbie Gallagher that children get this experience. “I ensure that my teachers have appropriate staff development and training for them to be the best they can,” said Gallagher, 57, the art and music curriculum specialist for the School Board of Alachua County. “When you have art and music in the schools, it is the one place where all children have access to this kind of education.” Gallagher’s idea of a “rich education” is one that uses the best parts of the arts to enhance a child’s understanding in other academic areas. According to the National Assembly of State Art Agencies’ report entitled “Critical Evidence: How the Arts Benefit Student Achievement,” the arts are as vital to a child’s education as math, science or reading. In 2005, a study found a positive correlation between years of art education and SAT scores. Researchers also found that first-graders reading below grade level had improved comprehension of a story when allowed to act it out. Finally, the report states that more than 65 relationships between the arts and academic and social outcomes have been documented. It’s important for parents to know where they can gain exposure to the arts, both in school and out.

“I feel like I’m where I’m supposed to be; like I’m doing what I do best,” said Erica Penley, age 13, who has been dancing at Cameron Dancenter for eight years. “Dance is my passion.”

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“A lot of it has to do with assessment,” said Gallagher, referring to standardized tests like the FCAT. “When you have high stakes assessment, you have to look at what determines whether you move ahead or not.” In Alachua County, the citizens have spoken out. Groups like Friends of the Elementary Art Programs and Citizens for Strong Schools have rallied funds to show support for the arts in schools. “I think this school district recognizes the richness that [art and music] bring to our children,” Gallagher said. “I think the community embraces that, too. It’s a richness that Michael Loffredo, a band teacher at Queen of Peace

Creativity Cultivated in the Classroom Catholic Academy and St. Francis Catholic High School, uses to get kids hooked on music. “What I tell [the] parents all the time is, it’s an investment for your child,” Loffredo said. “Because of all these extra things that [music] ties in with, math, history, literature, those are the connections that can derive meaning in several different ways.” Loffredo is 29, has 3 years of teaching under his belt and can already see the change music can make in his students. When he arrived at Queen of Peace three years ago, the band program was only a year old and primitive, and he started the band program at St. Francis this past year. Debbie Gallagher’s office is nestled among other gray and white boxes on the curriculum floor of the Kirby Smith building. Far from bland, her walls are sprinkled with family photos and color pops from every corner. The social studies teacher of 19 years now manages elementary social studies, world language, diversity education and art and music. Atop a filing cabinet with dozens of pastel folders inside, sits a metal organizer with a pink file that reads “elementary art” perched in front. Though the folder sits in first position, art and music often seem to come last when it comes to priorities for school budgets.

And, even though budget cuts plague also these two private schools just as they do public, Loffredo has seen back-bending support for his curriculum. Loffredo said two years into the band program at Queen of Peace, more than 50 percent of fifth-graders choose to study band during middle school. “Everything that’s done for me, I try to do for the kids. I’m proud to be a part of it.”

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Eric (left) is 15 and has been playing guitar for three years. He also plays clarinet in the marching band at Buchholz. He also plays a little drums. Jayson is 13 and has been playing for six months. He learned to play in Hoggetowne Middle School’s rock band and continues to play there. Jayson rotates in his school band from drums, to keyboard, to guitar.

Reaching Beyond the Schools

From gymnastics to dance, painting to guitar lessons and everything in between, Alachua County is overflowing with opportunities for a child to grow artistically.

the difference was he persisted. The arts allow kids to excel to whatever they level they want to.”

“Creating avenues for your kids to find out where and how they need to express themselves, that’s important as a parent,” said Sally Martin, mother of All American pommel horse competitor John Martin. “If I was going to pick something for my kid, I wouldn’t have picked gymnastics, something with year-round training. But it’s not what you need as a parent; it’s what your kid excels at. It’s your job as a parent to figure out what’s inside your child that wants to come out.” Martin’s son started training at Sun Country Sports Center in Gainesville when he was 6. Tagging along to the extracurricular his older sister had chosen, John quickly showed promise. “Sun Country started calling me and saying ‘We need to talk to you.’ At first, I thought I didn’t pay my bill,” joked Martin. “John wasn’t the most talented or gifted kid in the gym, but

At age 6, gymnastics gave John a place to express himself through movement, a method that was reprimanded at school. “He wasn’t getting positive marks in the classroom because he wasn’t fitting into the little mold they wanted him to,” Martin said. “It was the only outlet he had where he could be creative and express himself. All of his self esteem came from gymnastics.” At age 20, gymnastics has given John acceptance to the number two men’s gymnastics program at Stanford University and the focus to excel in engineering, his passion off the mat. Linda Bennett, co-owner and founder of Sun Country, has seen John’s brand of success many times over in her 23 years at the facility. “It’s exponentially beneficial for everybody, and boys in particular,” Bennett said. She recalls a conversation she had with John’s career-long gymnastics coach. “Coach said, ‘It’s made him a different kid.’ He never would have [gotten into Stanford] without the discipline and organization we gave him,” Bennett remembered. Though encouraged by the success she sees each day, Bennett’s daughter and partner, Jodi, isn’t blind to the many children who will never step foot into a private facility. “Even though we offer these things, I know that not everybody can

“Music is one of the places where I feel that I can always express myself,” said Sarah, age 15, a violinist since age 3. “It is one of the most important aspects of my life.”


afford to come and get them. I wish they offered everything we have in schools,” said Jodi. That’s why Sun Country has, since they opened, offered about ten scholarships per year for children without economic means to dive head first into the dance, gymnastics, cheerleading or swimming. “Back when I opened, my girlfriend came to me and asked me to accept a child from Big Brothers Big Sisters. She just flourished here,” Bennett explained. Nina Cameron, owner, instructor and director of Cameron Dancenter since 1983, also understands the need for such community outreach. She created the “Chance to Dance” program, which gives underprivileged children the opportunity to learn, and her dancers, who serve as the teachers for the program, the opportunity to give back. In her 40 years of teaching dance, Cameron has seen every positive change dance has to offer. Internally, a boost in self-esteem and an outlet for self-expression stand out. “Even children who are very shy shine when they’re on the stage,” said Cameron, who also relishes in the external rewards her dancers have received for being so committed to the arts. “Someone went to apply for a job and she was the 25th person to apply that day and she had no job experience whatsoever. When she got finished telling them about her commitment to dance, they hired her on the spot.”

More of

the Arts Want to get your family more involved with area arts? Debbie Gallagher, the Alachua County curriculum specialist for art and music, suggests attending some of the many art exhibits the school board hosts. “Our kids are being exposed to so many more varieties of technique and art history that they never would have had back when I was in school,” Gallagher said. “You were cutting out paper flowers, but you didn’t have instruction on the Harlem Renaissance or learn about the roots of jazz. It’s richer and deeper and broader. Your mouth would drop.” Mark your calendar, or check out the art on display year round at the Alachua County Administration Building, Florida Capital Bank and the Florida Museum of Natural History.

Thomas Center Youth Art Exhibits January 8 – February 20, 2011 (K-12) Reception: Thursday, January 13, 2011 February 26 – April 10, 2011 (Secondary) Reception: Thursday, March 10, 2011 April 16 - May 22, 2011 (Elementary) Reception: Thursday, April 28, 2011

Harn Youth Art Exhibit May 3 – May 31, 2011 Reception: Thursday, May 12, 2011 “I have learned that it takes a lot of hard work and effort to reach your goals,” said Katie, age 10, who has been dancing since she was 4 years old. “But when you succeed, it makes it all worth while.”

To find out more about the Elementary Arts Program, visit the Gainesville Foundation’s Web site at www.gnvcf.org. Check out Citizens for Strong Schools at www.yesforalachuaschools.org. Sun Country Sports Center www.suncountrygymnastics.com Cameron Dancenter www.camerondancenter.com

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Keep

art in Your Child’s Life

Kids are getting less and less art exposure in school; most see their art teacher for 40 minutes a week and some don’t go all year. But those 1,440 minutes per year are important, and perhaps even vital, to a child’s growth. “Research reveals that when young people (both general and at-risk populations) study the arts they show heightened academic standing, a strong capacity for self-assessment, and a secure sense of their own ability to plan and work for a positive future,” reports “The Impact of the Arts on Workforce Preparation,” a study by the National Governor’s Association. Retired art educator Sue Johnson has suggestions to keep art a priority in your home.

“Dancing has taught me not to give up, even when I am frustrated with myself,” said Caroline Richardson, age 13, a dance student of different area schools since she was 3 years old.

1) Get them inspired with a blank page. “Good art activities need to make children think and should be open-ended so that there are many possible solutions,” Johnson said. For an unstructured and easily accessible activity, give your child a sketchbook. Suggest that he draw from observation, sketch blindfolded or trace collected objects to get the creative juices flowing. “Sketchbooks are visual diaries where one can explore and express ideas without concern for ‘making it look right,’” Johnson added. 2) Studio Success. “Setting up a place in the house where children can just go and make art is a great idea,” Johnson suggested. Even if it’s just a corner of the living room, a child’s “art studio,” decorated with her framed artwork, can give her a place to feel artistically comfortable and make art an everyday activity. “Neither the space nor the art supplies need to be elaborate,” Johnson said. For a homemade studio, she recommends a table to work at and a variety of art materials like papers, markers or crayons, glue, scissors and collage materials. A box of household trash (bottle caps, cardboard boxes and egg cartons) can quickly become your child’s treasure. 3) Talk about it. Children need to be encouraged to talk about their art, without the fear of judgment. Keep questions and comments open-ended, like “I love that beautiful blue. Tell me what you were thinking about when you picked that color,” or “What’s the title for this picture?” “When a child shows you his work, open statements allow the child to express what they are thinking about,“ Johnson said. “What looks like a scribble to an adult may very well be an elaborate structure or a wonderful creature. The accompanying explanation from that small artist will provide much insight.” For additional art activities, try http://artjunction.org.

Ashley (above), a gymnast at Sun Country Sports Center, started gymnastics at age 2 1/2 and now trains 20 to 25 hours a week, year round. She holds state champion awards and is a model student at Millhopper Montessori Middle School.


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back to school

Countdown! Helping Kids Get Back In The Groove By Jeannine Dupler

W

hile many kids across Alachua County may be coming down with the back-to-school blues, most parents are probably breathing a sigh of relief. If you haven’t already begun to do so, now is the time to get back into the groove of learning. You’ll be doing yourself, your kids and your kids’ teachers a favor by easing the shock now.

Three Weeks Before School Starts:

1. Check your school’s Web site for grade level supply lists and get supplies now before stores run out. Many stores also post lists near supply shelves. 2. Make sure your kids have enough clothes and shoes for school that fit. If your child’s school requires a uniform, carefully check your school’s uniform policy to be sure all of your child’s uniform apparel is in compliance. 3. Consider donating school supplies to families in need. “Tools for Schools” is an organization that collects and makes supplies available to teachers, especially those at schools with kids in need. 4. Get your children back on a school sleep routine. Get them up at the early hour required to get them to school on time and reintroduce the early bedtime.

Photo courtesy of Istockphoto.com

Two Weeks Before School Starts:

1. Check with your boss about taking time off for “Meet the Teacher.” This event is recommended for elementary students and students new to a particular school. Elementary students can meet their homeroom teachers and learn where their classrooms are. Middle and high school students can get a copy of their schedules, compare schedules with friends and ease first-day jitters. Most Alachua County public schools’ Meet the Teacher will be on Friday, August 20. 2. Take off work the first morning school starts. You might be the parent who almost needs a cattle prod to get your kids out the door. 3. Schedule a haircut. That summer shabby look is certainly very chic, but a trimmed cut will help send the message that the summer lifestyle is over.

One Week Before School Starts:

1. Plan some fun activities for your kids in their final days of freedom. Summer vacation is one of the great things about being a kid, so plan a last memory-making event. 2. Get your kids’ input on hearty after school snacks, healthy lunch options, and quick, easy dinners (maybe even things the kids can help prepare).

3. Consider creating morning and evening checklists to transfer some or all of the responsibility of your kids’ preparation to them.

Two Days Before School Starts:

1. Shop for your snacks, lunch box ingredients and dinner menus. Be sure to include fresh fruits like apples and oranges. 2. Be sure the battery in your camera is charged and the memory card has plenty of room for pictures. Charge your video camera if you plan on having moving pictures of the big day.

The Night Before School:

1. Be sure that first-day outfits or uniforms are clean and pressed, if necessary. 2. Pack lunches so you don’t have too much going on in the morning. 3. Go to bed early.

The Morning of the First Day of School:

1. Set the precedent for how things will be throughout the school year. Let your kids know that they need to be out the door at a specific time. Be firm, but be calm and reassuring. 2. Take lots of pictures. 3. Drink lots of coffee. 4. Celebrate! Jeannine Dupler has taught at public and private schools in the U.S. and abroad. She teaches reading at Westwood Middle School.

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B

ackpacks come in all sizes, colors, fabrics, and shapes and help kids of all ages express their own personal sense of style. And when used properly, they’re incredibly handy. Many packs feature multiple compartments that help students stay organized while they tote their books and papers from home to school and back again. Compared with shoulder bags, messenger bags, or purses, backpacks are better because the strongest muscles in the body — the back and the abdominal muscles — support the weight of the packs. As practical as backpacks are, though, they can strain muscles and joints and may cause back pain if they’re too heavy or are used incorrectly. Here’s how to help kids find the right backpack.

Problems Backpacks Can Pose

Most doctors and physical therapists recommend that kids carry no more than 10-15 percent of their body weight in their packs. The spine is made of 33 bones called vertebrae, and between the vertebrae are discs that act as natural shock absorbers.

backpacksafety 2 Kids who wear their backpacks over just one shoulder may end up leaning to one side to offset the extra weight. They might develop lower and upper back pain and strain their shoulders and neck.

1

Improper backpack use can also Carrying a heavy pack lead to poor posture. Also, backchanges the way a person packs with tight, walks and increases the narrow straps that risk of falling, particularly on dig into the shoulders can interfere stairs or other places where with circulation the backpack puts the stuand nerves. These dent off balance. types of straps can contribute to tingling, numbness, and weakness in the arms and hands. And bulky or heavy backpacks don’t just cause back injuries.

BACKPACK FACT

Other safety issues to consider:

• Kids who carry large packs often aren’t aware of how much space the packs take up and can hit others with their packs when turning around or moving through tight spaces, such as the aisles of the school bus. • Students are often injured when they trip over large packs or the packs fall on them. • Carrying a heavy pack changes the way a person walks and increases the risk of falling, particularly on stairs or other places where the backpack puts the student off balance.

Most doctors and physical therapists recommend that kids carry no more than 10-15 percent of their body weight in their packs.

Purchasing a Safe Pack

Despite their potential problems, backpacks are an excellent tool for kids when used properly. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that parents look for the following when choosing the right backpack: • A lightweight pack • Two wide, padded shoulder straps • A padded back • A waist belt • Multiple compartments

Using Backpacks Wisely

A lot of the responsibility for packing lightly — and safely — rests with kids: • Encourage kids to use their locker or desk frequently. • Make sure kids don’t tote unnecessary items. • Encourage kids to bring home only the books needed for homework or studying each night. • Ask about homework planning. A heavier pack on Fridays might mean that a child is procrastinating on homework. •Picking up the backpack the right way can also help kids avoid back injuries. • Use all of the backpack’s compartments, putting heavier items, such as textbooks, closest to the center of the back. © 1995- 2010 . The Nemours Foundation/KidsHealth®. Reprinted with permission. Full article available at http://kidshealth.org/parent/positive/learning/backpack.html.

Photo courtesy of Istockphoto.com

When a heavy weight, such as a backpack filled with books, is incorrectly placed on the shoulders, the weight’s force can pull a child backward. To compensate, a child may bend forward at the hips or arch the back, which can cause the spine to compress unnaturally. The heavy weight might cause some kids to develop shoulder, neck, and back pain.

BACKPACK FACT


X p o t r ou icks p

*

b k

backpacks! JU-JU BACKPACK

Photos by Laurel Housden Photography

SUPERSTITION BACKPACK By FUL www.ful.com Complete with side water bottle pouch, the Superstition Backpack from FUL is comfortable and versatile, with its padded back panel and roomy compartments. It is a perfect addition to any school year! Comes in a variety of colors.

ROCKER SCHOOL BACKPACK

By Four Peas www.fourpeasonline.com The Rocker School backpack by Four Peas has adjustable and padded straps, is PVCfree, and has plenty of space and compartments for pencils, notepads, and water bottles. This backpack also comes in a “Toddler” size! Comes in a variety of colorful patterns.

By Beatrix www.dantebeatrix.com These colorful and spacious backpacks from Beatrix are the perfect fit for any “big kid” going off to school. Big enough for books, lunch boxes, and more, this backpack comes with padded shoulder straps for a comfy carry! And, it is also PVCfree, lead-free, and phthalate free. Comes in a variety of patterns.

giggle

GO FETCH BACKPACK

By Dabbawalla www.dabbawallabags.com Perfect for preschoolers, the Go Fetch backpack is just the right size for snacks, board books, and toys. Moms are going to love this… just pop it into the washing machine and drip dry for cleaning! Comes in a variety of patterns.

magazine • aug/sept 2010

21


Q: Early fall is always a tough time for me to keep my fitness goals on track – summer is ending, school is starting and weekends are consumed by football and barbecues. Any advice on how to stay healthy?

The Three P’s

g stayin

fit

with your busy fall schedule By Dan Griffin, BS, CSCS * Owner, Sweat Life Fitness, Inc.

A: To make the transition from sleepy summertime to full-throttle fall, use what I call “the Three Ps” – Preparation, Prioritization and Passion. The Three Ps can be implemented in any aspect of your daily life or business.

Prepare the night before. The most successful coaches, athletes and

Prioritize your day. With so much vying for your time – work, school, grocery shopping, cooking, cleaning, exercising, soccer practice – it is easy to get overwhelmed. Make a daily list. Put items with deadlines and due dates at the top of the list, followed by essential activities, like taking children to school, exercising and grocery shopping. Finally, leave the non-essential items (such as watching American Idol or updating your Facebook status) for a day that you have more time or as a reward for completing your list. Live with Passion. Approach your life with the same passion you use to cheer on the Gators. Set goals and then set out to conquer them. If your goal is to run a 5K, think of reasons to accomplish this feat – what is your motivation? Are you passionate about these reasons? If so, chances are you will be successful. By keeping passion in your life every day, you will be happier, healthier and more productive. “There is no passion to be found playing small, in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living” - Nelson Mandela. In Health, Dan

Photo courtesy of Istockphoto.com

business owners in the world practice this daily. Shouldn’t you? Every night, take a few minutes to plan the following day. Prepare lunches and snacks, lay out clothes, coordinate meetings/activities and schedule your exercise. The more time you spend preparing, the less time you will waste when it’s time to get things done.


dresses covering the midriff, back and sides at all times. Further specifications, like color requirements, will be implemented by the individual schools. These color requirements are likely to include appropriate school colors.

ack-to-school shopping will take on new meaning for Alachua County public school students in grades Kindergarten through 12 this fall, due to the new district-wide uniform policy. According to the School Board of Alachua County Web site, the plan requires boys and girls to wear solidcolored, long or short sleeved, collared shirts, such as polos. Boys may wear solid-colored pants or walking shorts. Girls will be allowed to wear solid-colored skirts, pants, walking shorts, jumpers or skorts. Solid-colored jeans without trim, embroidery or other decoration also may be worn.

ELEMENTARY

The dress code calls for appropriately sized clothing, with bottoms worn at the waist and shirts, blouses and

alachua county’s new

public school

Uniform Policy

by ASHLEY HOOVER Photos by Laurel Housden Photography

The five-member Alachua County school board approved the policy with a 3-2 vote in early June. School Board member F. Wesley Eubank said letters were sent home with students at the end of the 2009-10 school year detailing all new requirements. Although the community and students have shown some opposition through protesting, Eubank said many parents are grateful and have expressed feelings of relief from expensive, back-to-school shopping.

HIGH SCHOOL & MIDDLE SCHOOL

“The hope is to enhance learning environments by increasing safety and defining the rules better to make it easier to enforce the dress code,” Eubank said. Parents should be aware that any resistance to the new dress code will be met with consequences for students. There have been student protests since the School Board passed the measure and throughout the summer, especially among high school students. Public Information Officer for Alachua County public schools Jackie Johnson said, schools will treat any resistance to the policy with the same protocol. “If a student comes to school dressed inappropriately, they’ll be asked to change,” said Johnson. “And, if they don’t have another appropriate outfit, we’ll call the parents and ask them to bring something else.” She said protocol for repeated violations may be found in each individual school’s student code of conduct. For more information and frequently asked questions, visit www.sbac.edu.

giggle

magazine • aug/sept 2010

23


p all kidding aside Retired elementary school counselor, Wendy Joysen, answers tough questions about kids, schools, parenting, & everything in between. s the school year is about to begin, many

Aparents start to question if their child is old

Years ago, a child who returned after school to an empty house until their parents returned home from work was called a “latchkey kid.” Now known as “self care,” the term refers to elementary and middle school aged children who are without adult supervision after school. Children who attend high school do not fall under this umbrella because most of the population believes it is developmentally appropriate for high school age children to care for themselves after school (www.latchkey-kids.com). The State of Florida has no minimum age established by law for a child to be left at home alone. According to the Eighth Judicial Circuit of Florida Family Court, the State uses a number of factors to determine whether a child can be left alone including: “the child’s maturity; the safety of the environment that they are left in; how long they are left alone; whether or not they can get in touch with their parent or caregiver; and whether or not they know what to do in case of an emergency. Leaving a child alone can constitute neglect on the part of a parent or caregiver if the child could be in any danger or harm.” The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that parents should not leave children younger than age 12 unsupervised. The AAP states that maturity, not age, be the determining factor in whether a child should be left at home alone. There are alternatives to consider other than putting younger children into a self care situation. Parents can work together to exchange babysitting for other responsibilities, errands and even meals. They can also explore after school programs at the child’s school, the local Boys & Girls Club, YMCA or other child-based community programs, which often offer scholarships to families in need. If you are considering having your child stay at home alone, there are a number of factors that you should take into account: • How does your child feel about being left at home alone? Are they scared, worried, uncomfortable? • Do you feel your child can follow directions and make important decisions? • Consider how long your child will be alone and how safe your neighborhood is. • Will your child follow rules that you set beforehand?

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If you have made the decision to allow your child to stay at home without adult supervision, please deliberate the following and make sure your child knows: • their full name, address and phone number. • your name, your place of employment and your phone numbers (cell phone and landlines). • how to make a call to 911. • not to walk home alone and what to do if they are being followed. • to always check the house before entering and NEVER enter the house if they feel something looks out of place. • to always lock the doors to the house after entering. • IMMEDIATELY check in with you once they have arrived safely. • Is the phone allowed? If so, NEVER tell a caller that they are at home alone. • Do not open the door for or talk to anyone, unless they are a relative or trusted friend. As a parent, you should have plans for the following: • Have a daily schedule of homework time and chores for your child to follow. • Is the television allowed? If so, what channels can be viewed? • Is the computer allowed? (Children can enter chat rooms and have conversations with strangers that put them in danger). • Are friends allowed over when you are not at home? • Can your child go to a friend’s home? • Are medications in a locked container or cabinet? • Are there any firearms/guns in the home and are they safely secured? • What appliances can your child use when you are not at home? Realize that having your child stay home alone after school is a huge responsibility. You must look at a tremendous amount of factors to make an educated plan to make sure that the person that is most important in your life remains safe until you arrive home. Make time at the end of the day to discuss the day’s events with your child and always remind your child to share anything with you. If your child is not ready to embark upon this grown-up endeavor, it is important that you let them know you will find a way to make sure they are safe and comfortable. National Center for Missing & Exploited Children - Publication: “Know the Rules... After School Safety For Children Who Are Home Alone”. Available online at www.missingkids.com

Photo courtesy of Istockphoto.com

enough to be left alone at home. The idea of not having to worry about after school child care is tempting. Not only is it convenient but, it is a cost savings, too. But, is your child ready to go home to an empty house after school?


Steve photographed by Laurel Housden, Eric photographed by Lifeprints Photography

Life’s best moments...

Begin with a smile. W

hen is the last time a dentist asked you to open your mouth so they could listen? Lending an ear to listen has helped Tioga Dental Associates respond to the needs of their patients. Characteristics such as these are what has enabled them to form a loyal, family-like atmosphere in their practice. “We strive to provide excellent customer service to our patients,” says Dr. Cynthia Brush. “It sounds simple, but exceeding people’s expectations is very important to us. Being in someone’s mouth is an intimate experience and we try to respect that in every way possible.” Drs. Cynthia Brush, Michelle Orris, and the entire Tioga Dental Team, recognize the individual needs of their patients. They are devoted to treating everyone they encounter in the office with respect, compassion, and sensitivity to his or her individuality. “We are committed to each other as a team, and extend that same level of excellence to our patients,” says Dr. Brush. At Tioga Dental Associates, there is a special effort to cater to our “littler” patients. “We want to create an atmosphere in the office that makes each patient feel valued. Like they are part of our extended family,” states Dr. Orris. Children especially enjoy the warmth and care that the doctors and staff demonstrate daily. There is a separate play room for children and minimum wait time for them as well. For patients that receive a “Cavity Free” visit, they are inducted into the “Cavity Free Zone.” This special award entitles each recipient to a portrait with “Bugsy,” our resident puppet friend, which is posted on our “Cavity Free Zone” board all month long. Their portrait is mailed home so that they may enjoy their success even longer, and when placed on the mirror by their bathroom sink, serves as a daily reminder that their extra effort at home is rewarded at their next cleaning visit. They also receive a certificate for bragging and a free TCBY kids cup as part of a “Cavity Free” visit. S P E C I A L

“We want the trip to the dentist to be fun! I tell all of my patients that we focus just as much on creating positive dental experiences as we do on brushing and flossing. We want our children to mature into adults who maintain current dental visits and actively seek the preventive dental care they need to stay healthy,” states Dr. Orris. Dr. Brush’s vision for Tioga Dental Associates is constantly changing and evolving. This will continue to progress as improvements in dental technologies and resources become available. Her philosophy of patient centered care however, will never change. Dr. Brush states, “The reward for me is being involved in life changing experiences for my patients. It is a truly rewarding daily experience.”

Dedicated to Bringing Smiles To Our Community

352-333-1946

www.TiogaDental.com

13005 SW 1st Road, Ste 233 • Jonesville, FL 32669

A D V E R T I S I N G

Evening Hours Available

F E A Tgiggle U R magazine E • june/july 2010

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Tailgating

it’s

Football s eason

Family

with the

!

by Tamara Herchel Photos by Lifeprints Photography

Can you hear the joyful cheers throughout the Gator Nation? It’s that special time of year again, when Orange and Blue faithful dust off their canopies and stock up on supplies in preparation for the season for which they’ve been waiting -- tailgate season! Whether you’re new to Gainesville, new to tailgating, or new to celebrating football traditions with baby Gators in tow, here are a few tips on how to get into Gator spirit the family way!

Plan ahead. If this is your first attempt at a family tailgate, keep in mind that most parking on and around campus is first-come, first-served. It may be a challenge to find your perfect tailgating spot, so plan on arriving early to set up and get settled. Preparing food items the evening before also can save load time in the morning. Looking for menu suggestions? Check out “The Tailgating Cookbook: Recipes for the Big Game” by Robert Sloan (available at amazon.com) for great grilling techniques, side item recipes and a handy time line detailing what to prepare the night before and what can wait until game day.

*involve the kids

Pack for preparedness. Game days in the South are smokin’ hot affairs, especially early in the season, and least of all because of the group gathering around the grill! Remember to pack a canopy for some shade, sunscreen, folding chairs, blankets (the littlest Gator fans may need naps during the day) and, of course, lots of water and Gatorade. To make cooling off even more fun, buy drinks in team colors! Nothing says “Go Gators” like a cooler full of Orange and Blue Gatorade. Team spirit is in the details. Orange-andblue décor is abundant here in Titletown, so take advantage of the many Gator shops for some added flare. From serveware and tablecloths to more elaborate items like inflatable mascots, sprucing up your tailgate set-up will add to the festive atmosphere! Involve children in fun tailgating activities. Some family favorites? Face-painting,

ladder golf and tailgate toss are great ways to get everyone involved. Even just throwing around a football will add to the experience. Parents can also print out team rosters so everyone can pick out their favorite players on the field.

Raise ‘em right! Of course, we in the Gator Nation all want our offspring to someday adopt our love of all things Gator. What better way than teaching them game day traditions? Sing along to “We Are the Boys.” The Gator Walk, when the UF team exits the bus and enters the stadium, is always a fan favorite. Another great teachable moment? Chat with young ones about celebrating Gator Greatness, while treating opposing fans with courtesy and sportsmanship. Football Dog food and Water Bowl found at Kitchen and Spice

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Relax! Tailgates are fun, casual, enjoyable celebrations and shouldn’t be too stressful. If loading up, parking and settling in seem like too much work, family tailgates can be just as successful at home. As long as there is good food, football and fun, everyone will be happy before you can say “Go Gators.” And, that’s definitely something to cheer about!


*Have fun with the details

the perfect

*pieces

*the food

Find the perfect pieces for your party. Five piece Gator bowls and dish- Kitchen and Spice Apron , Grilling tongs and spatula Kitchen and Spice

For family-friendly tailgating food options, stick with the basics and family favorites. Always remember to keep food and condiments at the proper temperatures throughout the day. Keep plenty of water and refreshments on hand for those hot afternoons.

Orange and Blue plastic cups and pitcher Kitchen and Spice Football corn holders Organize.com

*kid’s table!

giggle tip: Try to incorporate your favorite team colors throughout the dishes.

Give the kids a fun activity with a themed cookie decorating table. Wilton Cookie cutters and icing/sprinkles-www.wilton.com. Fun for the whole family, the Hookum game-www.5mississippi.com

Hookum gam e

A special Thank you to: www.gatortailgating.com, Kitchen and Spice and Other Things Nice, Organize.com, Wilton.com, Mrs. Pidge Boyles, our Tailgating Families and Annie the dog.

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magazine • aug/sept 2010

27


Noche de Gala

Annual Fundraising Event Benefiting the Sebastian Ferrero Foundation

Saturday, October 23, 2010 at Besilu Collection, Micanopy, Florida For gala details, sponsorship, volunteer and silent auction opportunities, please visit

NochedeGala.org

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Join Us In Supporting the 2010 Noche de Gala Fundraiser

Mrs. Cynthia F. O’Connell Event Chair

Mr. Horst and Luisa Ferrero Founders

Coach Billy Donovan Celebrity Chair

Mr. Benjamin and Silvia Leon Jr.

Mr. Mark and Deborah Minck

Hosts and Honorary Chairs

Gainesville Co-Chairs

Mr. Robert and Linda Eadie

Mr. Ron and Gay Sachs

Dr. Jim and Pam Duke

Lake City Co-Chairs

Tallahassee Co-Chairs

Ocala Co-Chairs giggle

magazine • july 2009

29


in our next issue! Our Pie Contest Winner

Starting your kids off fresh and organic with Tyler Florence PuttingINaTHE FaceNEXT to Breast Cancer ISSUE Do’s and Don’ts of Trick-or-Treating Homemade Trick-or-Treat Bags

giggle goes

Holiday Shopping! Be sure to get your hands on our

Oct a Nov Issue!

calling all Pies!

Do you have a winning pie recipe?

Drop your delectable masterpiece off at the giggle office on

August 25th 3 pm to 6 pm

for a chance to win the title and prizes! Visit gigglemag.com for more contest details!


IT.

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Recycle & Recyclable Lunch Set Packing a lunch has never been so much fun and eco-friendly. Made with eCycle, BPA-free, and recyclable itself, this lunch box set is microwave and dishwasher safe. Moms will love it. Containers are leak proof and stack nicely in the recycled, included tote! (www.shopaladdin-pmi.com/)

lunch boxes

If we love it and would use it, we stamp it.

Yubo Lunchbox What better way to show off your child’s personality, than with a personalized Yubo lunchbox. This durable and compact lunch box is dishwasher safe, comes with its own ice pack and three individualized food containers. On the outside, there are two sides that can be customized with interchangeable faceplates or with a PHOTO! BPA-free and anti-microbial plastic. (www.getyubo.com)

Safari Explorers Lunch Box

Inspired by maps of the 1920’s, this sturdy and fun lunch box by Thermos has foam insulation to keep the food fresh and a zippered front pouch for extra goodies. (www.lunchboxes.com)

{

Animal Tracks Bottle

Dabbawalla Insulated Lunch Bag Made from washable neoprene, these yummy Dabbawalla lunchboxes are cute and functional. Pack them full of snacks, drinks, and sandwiches. Mom and Dad will love that they are machine washable and stain resistant. (www.lunchboxes.com)

{ New Generation Isothermic Kids Lunchbox/ Lunch Bag This Isothermic lunch bag keeps food colder longer, making little lunches fresh and yummy. Made from soft plastic, this bag is easy to clean and has a short handle and shoulder strap for comfy carrying. (www. monkeyfaceschildrensboutique.com)

2-Tier Pyramid Tiffin

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Perfectly compact, this lunch Tiffin is simple and easy to use. Complete with two containers and one plate, it snaps together for easy carrying. Dishwasher safe and will last for years. (www.happytiffin.com)

WE

If you have something you think deserves the giggle stamp, send us an email at giggle@irvingpublications.com

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Photos by Laurel Housden Photography

Pair this Animal Tracks stainless steel bottle with our Safari lunchbox. Eco-friendly, functional, and educational (covered with prints from zoo animals), this bottle is easy to use and clean. Fun for kids of all ages. (www.lunchboxes.com)

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magazine • aug/sept 2010

31


Babysitting A First Job With Huge Responsibilities

By Alexandra Bitton

F

or many teenagers, babysitting is a first job -- the very first time they are given a sizable responsibility. When babysitters stop and consider it carefully, being entrusted with their clients’ children is a rather heavy responsibility. Responsibility is, in part, learned through experience. Babysitting can be like a taste of adulthood. But, what is the right age for a “young adult” to begin babysitting?

The Babysitting Survival course at Santa Fe Kids College offers safety and CPR training for teens and preteens, who have an interest in babysitting. Students also have fun creating a babysitting survival kit with games, an emergency action plan and neighborhood advising. Thomas said the class is a great start for a budding babysitter. Many websites offer ideas for interviewing, selecting, and training, babysitters and some local organization offer classes similar to the one at Santa Fe College. Many organizations recommend making a list of important skills you would like your sitter to have and provide a list of rules you want followed while you are out. Find out if the babysitter is comfortable with these. A few important skills to look for in a babysitter are independent thinking, a calm demeanor, an ability to show authority and problem solving ability. Think about what is important to you: do you prefer to go out knowing your children are going to have a blast in your absence, but the kitchen might be covered in whipped cream? Or would you prefer for things to remain consistent and orderly? Making a list of helpful suggestions and spending some time talking about your children individually highlighting their differences, likes, dislikes and quirks (because we all have them) is extremely helpful. Before leaving, giving an update on what has been done and what is yet to be done (baths, dinner, story) makes outings less stressful. Showing your thanks is essential.

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Money is great, but often words of appreciation are like a salve on the heart of the young. Ultimately, babysitting can be a win-win situation, when approached carefully. It provides adolescents with a sense of value, self-worth and responsibility, while offering parents a much needed break made even better when it is worry free.

for e mor

info!

For more information on this topic, visit the following web sites:

National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children: www.nspcc.org Michigan University: http://www.med.umich.edu Santa Fe Kids College: http://dept.sfcollege.edu Santa Fe Kids College can be reached at 352-395-5193.

Photo courtesy of Istockphoto.com

According to Susan Thomas, the instructor for the Santa Fe Kids College “Babysitting Survival” course, the right time for a teen to take a babysitting job is less a question of age than maturity and overall readiness. Some organizations (such as the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children) recommend a starting age of 16. States establish guidelines for children, babysitters and the safety and comfort of all which in some states includes a minimum age. Florida does not have an age requirement for babysitters.


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magazine • oct/nov 2009

33


p heading

Fun and Fabulous ‘Frugal Fashions’ for Back to School Just Between Friends offers area families fashionable and affordable outfits for children

Just Between Friends of Gainesville is planning its biggest community children’s consignment sales event ever, with tons of fun and fabulous ‘frugal fashions’ for back to school. The fall sale will include clothing and accessories for all seasons. Registration is now open to participate as a consignor, volunteer or first-time mom for the upcoming semi-annual event. During each community children’s consignment event, area families come together and bring thousands of new and gently-used ‘fashionable and trendy’ children’s clothing, shoes, baby equipment, books, electronics, room décor, outdoor playground equipment and pretty much anything you need to raise a child in Florida. You will find Gymboree, jump-a-roos, Fisher Price, Little Tikes, Leap Frog, Disney, Thomas the Train and Toy Story characters all under one big roof. “Just Between Friends experienced 71 percent growth in its community sales from last fall to last spring, which means even more local families were able to make and save on the quality items their growing children need,” said Jennifer Pruitt, coordinator of the Gainesville JBF sales event. “Our focus is on helping moms and dads recycle outgrown and unused items. But, the real beauty of JBF is that those same parents can shop for items their family needs for next season. This truly is a winwin solution for everyone raising children in North Central Florida.”

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The economic downturn has inspired families to stop giving away children’s items at garage sales. Just Between Friends offers consignors (sellers) up to 70% for sold items, without the hassle of a garage sale and each consignor sets their own prices. For busy moms who don’t have time to tag and prepare items, JBF also offers a convenient valet tagging service. Parents, grandparents and anyone who enjoys volunteering can help out at any sale, which earns them a “shop before the public” pre-sale pass. JBF also has a number of bartering opportunities available. “We inspect all clothing items as they come in, so that moms and dads are shopping only through clothing that is desirable and well-organized,” said Pruitt. “Everyone is invited to come and be a part of a unique network of bargain-savvy moms who believe that the best in life doesn’t have to cost full price.” The Gainesville JBF sale benefits, in part, The Children’s Home Society of Florida. If you would like to get free admission passes for your school, daycare, church or moms group, please contact Jennifer Pruitt at 352.494.6229. For more information and to sign-up on the community email mailing list for future sale announcements, please visit www.jbfsale.com and click “gainesville, fl”.


health & wellness p starting any physical activity. “Begin hydrating half an hour before a game or activity,” said Meyer. Continuing to drink fluids while playing or exercising is also important. The body loses water through sweat and body fluids that need to be replaced. Otherwise, young athletes can become dehydrated. Dr. Meyer explained how water was a good hydrating tool if kids plan on exercising for about an hour.

r e t a w

! k a e Br Dehydration & Kids: What All Parents Need To Know By Madison McNary

I

t is the last inning of the game or the final seconds left in the fourth quarter and a young athlete has no more gas left in the tank to finish. The reason could be because the athlete is suffering from dehydration. In order for your child to be the best athlete he or she can be this fall, hydration is key. Hydrating properly also ensures safe and injury-free fun. Water regulates body temperature, lubricates joints and helps transport nutrients for energy and health, according to the Web site www.familydoctor.org. Parents should provide children with plenty of water and sport drinks, like Gatorade, before, during and after any ac-

Photo courtesy of Istockphoto.com

tivity that causes them to sweat. Monitoring

children is important as well, because often children try to play through dehydration, which can make it worse. Youth athletes should stop all activity if they are experiencing dizziness or lightheadedness, cramping, nausea or vomiting, dry mouth, heart palpitations or if sweating stops.

“You can have severe organ failure or even die from dehydration,” warns Dr. Laura Meyer, a pediatrician for Partners in Pediatrics in Clearwater, FL.

She also stated that if

the training lasts more than an hour, Gatorade is more effective because it replaces electrolytes. Electrolytes

are ions, including potassium, sodium, chloride and magnesium, needed to maintain a body’s normal electrical function.

A few signs that your child might be dehydrated are if they feel lightheaded, dizzy or have a dry mouth. “Children will not be able to produce tears or saliva, and they will not be able to pee as much,” said Dr. Meyer. Consequences of dehydration can be severe, including severe cramping, heat illness, altered kidney function, unconsciousness and death. Coaches also have a big part to play in preventing dehydration in children on their teams. Coaches should make sure their athletes are drinking fluids throughout practices and competitions. Coaches should give water breaks at appropriate times. Parents should also communicate to children that it is alright to take a break when it’s needed. So remember -- for an athlete to perform their best during the fall season, it is important to hydrate!

The American Council on Fitness

Recommends:

• 17-20 ounces of water 2-3 hours before exercise • 8 ounces of water 20-30 minutes before exercise • 7-10 ounces of water every 10-20 minutes during exercise • 8 ounces of water no more than 30 minutes after exercise

w w w. a c e f i t n e s s . o r g

Sports are supposed to be fun and exciting, but without the proper fluids any physical activity can be unbearable. To stay hydrated while playing their sport of choice, it is crucial to drink lots of fluids, like water and Gatorade before giggle

magazine • aug/sept 2010

35


p the

legal side of things

How Does Estate Planning Work? By attorney sondra randon, esq from Folds & Walker, LLC Editing and contributions from Tosha D. Fernandez, Esq. from Folds & Walker, LLC

E

state Planning is a service provided by law firms that provides an individual the ability to make decisions about the distribution and use of their assets, real property, and belongings and to designate a person to make health care decisions on their behalf. Among the various legal instruments utilized in this process, such as a will, trust, and healthcare surrogacy, a Power of Attorney is not exclusively used for estate planning. A person making a Power of Attorney has almost unlimited discretion in the scope and uses for a Power of Attorney. Below is a brief overview of the use of a Power of Attorney:

What is a Power of Attorney?

It is a legal document which allows a “Principal” (the maker of the Power of Attorney) to grant an “Attorney-in-Fact” (person receiving the Power of Attorney) specific authority to act on the Principal’s behalf. A principal has the ability to revoke the Power of Attorney at anytime. If the principal dies or becomes incapacitated, the Power of Attorney is thereby terminated.

What is a “Durable Power of Attorney”?

It is the most common form of Power of Attorney and authorizes an attorney-in-fact to continue to act on the principal’s behalf even after principal becomes incapacitated (but not dead). If drafted correctly, it can only terminate when a principal revokes the Durable Power of Attorney or dies. A Durable Power of Attorney must contain special language providing that the authority survives the incapacity of the principal and requires the principal to sign the document in front of a notary and two witnesses.

What can an Attorney-in-Fact be authorized to do?

A Power of Attorney may be as limited or general in scope as the principal desires. It is best to retain an attorney experienced in Estate Planning to guarantee the Power of Attorney specifies the scope of the attorney-in-fact’s authority and the language and document conform to Florida law requirements. Some specific authorized powers include: • Selling the principal’s home • Registering the principal’s vehicle with the appropriate State agency • Taking the principal’s minor child out of the country • Transacting business on the principal’s behalf • Managing the principal’s business affairs • Executing forms on behalf of the principal

How does a Power of Attorney work?

Depending on the situation and authority granted to the attorney-in-fact, a principal may decide to hold onto the signed Power of Attorney until certain contingencies arise necessitating the need for its use. Often, a principal will sign the Power of Attorney and have his or her lawyer securely hold the document with instructions to deliver the Power of Attorney to the designated attorney-in-fact when those contingencies arise. The principal usually notifies the attorney-in-fact about the Power of Attorney and the location of the document. An attorney-in-fact can only act on behalf of a principal if it has the document in his or her possession.

Who can be an Attorney-in-Fact?

An attorney-in-fact has a fiduciary relationship with the principal. This means that the attorney-in-fact is under a high duty of care to act for the benefit of the principal. Any competent person over the age of eighteen may serve as an attorney-infact. A Power of Attorney can also provide for a successor attorney-in-fact in the event the primary attorney-in-fact dies before the principal, before the Power of Attorney is amended.

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This information should not be used as a substitute for seeking needed advice from an attorney or other qualified advisor regarding your individual needs.


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Sibling

Sharing BY DANA KAMP

One day they will cherish the fact that they have a sibling. At this moment, the six-year-old is sitting on the three-year-old’s back trying to pry the toy train out of his little brother’s hand. Even the kindest child has moments of complete despair: “But it’s MY toy!!” How do parents teach the concept of “Yes, it is yours (your toy, your responsibility, your turn, etc.), but sharing and cooperation make everything run smoother”? Here are just a few ideas to get things headed in the right direction. Set a timer. This works with children of all ages, but works especially well in my house with our preschooler and elementary-age child. When there is only one of a coveted item, we set a timer and each gets that allotted time to play with it. They know when they hear the buzzer, their turn is up and that’s it. Alternate days of the week for privileges/ turns. When I was younger, my sisters and I used to argue over who got to check the mail (seriously?!). So, we were assigned days of the week when it was our turn to sit in the front seat of the car and check the mail. There was no arguing. You knew what day it was and whose turn it was. My boys were arguing about who got to get out of the bathtub first each night, so I implemented this concept. We now alternate turns and there are no more take-downs, as they both try to clamber out first. Label, label, label. From sippy cups to baseball bats, pretty much everything in my house has someone’s initial on it. Even a two-year-old can recognize her letter and know if that is indeed her

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Barbie or her sister’s. It is amazing to watch the anger fade when they both think an item is theirs, they turn it over to reveal the initial, and the problem is solved and they move on. This can be helpful at play dates, when your child brings along a toy and the host child has the same toy. As long as yours has that magic letter on it, breakdowns will be avoided! Create a “Job Jar.” This is another idea pulled from the archives of my childhood. It’s not fair for one child to have the same job or responsibility all the time. The child gets bored with it and is likely to start slacking somewhat in the completion of it. You can set up the job jar according to ages of your children, daily/weekly jobs, or however it would benefit your family. This fairly distributes chores/jobs around the family and also keeps the monotony associated with chores to a minimum. Rotate roles. In many families (or classrooms or friendship circles), there is likely to be one child who always wants a leadership role and that can frustrate her sibling(s) and parents. Simply giving the other child(ren) a chance to make the final decision on a family matter can create a more balanced flow between siblings. If it’s Katie’s soccer game, then she gets to decide where the family eats after the game, instead of her older sister making the decision. Giving each child a chance to be a “leader” and a “follower” can give them a more healthy outlook on cooperation and working as a team. Let them settle it. Keep it simple: they settle it or the item becomes yours/the privilege is taken away/the TV gets turned off, whatever the situation entails. This is a great idea as your child gets older and he is mature enough to figure out what they should do in order to resolve the issue. This also gives them an opportunity to practice the important-but-not-always-fun social concept of conflict resolution, which they will need for the rest of their lives. We all know every child is different and every family will deal with sibling issues their own way. But, having a few mommy-tested tips on hand may give you a starting point. Good luck and try to remember to take a deep breath and count to 10 before grabbing the Sharpie and labeling everything in your house!

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Photo courtesy of Istockphoto.com

our community’s life-saving answers for every age!


Photos by of Verve Studio

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p family spotlight Yonge at the same time. Friends through middle and high school, the pair joked about attending prom together. But it wasn’t until 1993, while both were attending UF, that they first began to date. “He helped me through a very rough time, the loss of someone special in my life. It brought us closer,” said Tiffany. After three years of dating, four years of college ball and a career move that landed them in Indianapolis, Chris proposed and the two were married in the summer of 1998. Then, they hit the road. “Am I glad his career is over? Yes, very,” said Tiffany, with a sigh of relief. “We moved 22 times in 10 years. It’s not as glamorous as people think it is. We were very fortunate and he made a nice living, but it’s a hard way to live.” But, the sweet, warm smell of home called to them each winter and they returned to Gainesville.

Gator star now tackling family life The Doerings By Kelsey McNiel Photo by Lifeprints Photography

It’s a Monday, it’s 7:15 in the evening and Chris Doering just got home. His broad shoulders, sharp jaw and starched-straight business attire radiate power, but his eyes look tired. “That’s the hardest part for me. I don’t get home until this time of night. I get off the radio at six, then I’ve got some follow up from the mortgage stuff. I don’t get home until seven. So I do feel like I am missing out in a way,” said Doering, age 37. The former Gator quarterback and NFL player has settled down with Tiffany, his wife of 12 years, and their kids Taylor, 8, and Tyson, 6, in Haile Plantation. He’s traded early morning warmups for driving the kids to school, running on the field for running numbers at Chris Doering Mortgage and press conferences for co-hosting “The Sports Fix” with Adam Reardon (on WGGG-AM 1230 in Gainesville). “I started Chris Doering Mortgage in April of 2007, about the time that the mortgage [market] started crumbling. It’s almost a microcosm of my football career,” said Doering, who was cut nine times during his 10-year NFL career. “Nothing’s really ever come easy for me. So the fact that we would start this mortgage company in the middle of the worst housing market in the history of the economy I think says a lot about my overall story of life. A fact that I hope, I think, has something to do with my ability to handle adversity and persevere.” Like Chris, Tiffany has always been athletic. “We’re a sporty family. [Tyson] said the other night at dinner he was going to play football in college, and I said, ‘Well what are you going to be doing, Taylor?’ And she said, ‘I’ll be cheerleading!’” said Tiffany, imitating her daughter’s ‘Duh, mom’ moment. Tiffany and Chris have gone to school together since Kindergarten; both started at Idylwild and both transferred to P.K.

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After three years of marriage and moving, the couple had Taylor. Taylor was back and forth between preschools in Pittsburgh and Gainesville six times during one season. By the time Tyson came along, Tiffany saw the signs that football was not the life for a family. The couple decided that Chris would travel while Tiffany stayed home in Gainesville, with the kids. “About two months of off season workouts and him having to leave every Sunday and come home on Thursday, he came home one day and said ‘We’re not going to have to do this anymore. I asked them to release me,’” laughed Tiffany. “I think he had to figure it out for himself, that he was done. But I was done before that.” Chris’ large hand crouches to one side of the football, so that a Seminoles emblem is visible. “My son, he thinks it’s funny to tell me every once in a while that he’s going to play for the Bulldogs or play for Florida State,” laughed Chris, holding up the Nerf football Tyson recently picked out. Tyson has expressed great enthusiasm for football. “You know, I tell him ‘This is the way you have to do it.’ But he’s at an age where he knows everything and he’s a little resistant to listen to some of the coaching that I have,” said Chris. “You want to impart that wisdom to them, but I think the only way for them to really get it is to experience it.” When not playing football in the backyard, attending Gator gymnastics meets or eating at Mexico Lindo, the Doerings are simply enjoying life in Gainesville. “Part of it’s probably that it’s all I’ve ever known, but it’s just home to me,” Tiffany said.


organized

solutions

Professional organizer Helen Kornblum helps us find easy ways to keep our busy family lives organized.

Are you ready for School? Routines can reduce or eliminate stress as your family transitions from summer to school. Get yourself ready first, so you can set the tone for a class act. Buy a large calendar that’s visible, if not accessible, to everyone in the family. Enter the family’s usual activities, then add the school schedule, including holidays and breaks. A clear picture of committed and available time prevents double booking. Add individual schedules. Talk with your children about the activities they want to participate in during the school year. Then use a different color marker for each child’s calendar entries. Be alert for scheduling conflicts. • Prepare for outgoing paperwork. The school will be asking you for information about each child, such as medical and emergency numbers. You can assemble this material in one place to help you fill out various forms. Keep a copy of the forms you submit for future reference. • Prepare for incoming paperwork. Schools send home lots of flyers that you may need. A binder might be best for permanent information, with subsections for class lists, carpool contacts and general instructions related to school policies. A file might be better for flyers about occasional events because you will want to toss them out after the event is over. • Create arrival and departure routines. Designate a landing field/launching pad for the backpacks, flyers and special projects your little scholars bring home and take to school. Show your children how to use the space because a little explanation may prevent backpacks from being strewn about the house. • Designate distraction-free homework areas and stock them with needed materials. Young children usually want to be in the same room with a parent. Make sure the alarm clocks are in working order, stockpile dollar bills and change for lunch money, and keep your calendar up to date to earn an easy “A” in school preparation. Helen Kornblum is a professional organizer in Gainesville, FL. She owns NaturalOrderOrganizing.com.

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®


night out ladies’ gainesville moms take a break. Photos by Laurel Housden Photography

A fabulous night...

was had by all at this month’s giggle “Ladies’ Night Out,” hosted by Lang Jewelers. At our “Denim and Diamonds” party, ladies were treated to a night of great food, free jewelry cleaning and shopping. Lang Jewelers, located in Tioga Town Center, is owned by Matt and Stacy Lang, who have a combined 22 years experience in the jewelry business. Lang Jewelers, which opened their doors October 21, 2009, offers a wide array of jewels, watches, Gator-inspired jewelry and the ever popular Pandora line. Lang also repairs and custom designs gorgeous jewelry. The Langs believe in giving back to the community and the store carries the exclusive Sebastian Ferrero Foundation line of jewelry, which helps bring awareness to the foundation’s cause. After shopping, eating and all our diamonds sparkling from the detailed cleaning, a great night was had by all. Lang Jewelry sets the bar high. The warm and friendly staff welcomed us and the store’s supply of beautiful jewelry won our attention.

Desserts provided by The Flour Pot Bakery (Tioga)

Diamonds

Denim &

Brands that Lang carries:

Pandora Rebecca Sebastian Ferrero Foundation line Officially licensed Gator jewelry S. Kashi & Sons (bridal) Bulova Acutron watches Rochet (gents stainless line from France) Atocha and other treasure coin jewelry Diamond and colored stone jewelry Gator Seiko watches

Lang Jewelers

Tioga Town Center 133 SW 130th Way, Suite B Tioga, FL 32669 Phone: 352-672-6299 46 giggle

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Matt & Stacy Lang Owners

ands


GATORFOOTBALL

Schedule!

2010

September 4 Miami (OH) Gainesville Noon September 11 USF Gainesville TBA September 18

Tennessee

Knoxville

3:30 p.m.

September 25 Kentucky Gainesville TBA October 2 Alabama Tuscaloosa TBA October 9 LSU Gainesville TBA October 16

Mississippi State

Gainesville

TBA

October 30

Georgia

Jacksonville

3:30 p.m.

November 6 Vanderbilt Nashville TBA November 13

South Carolina

Gainesville

TBA

November 20

Appalachian State

Gainesville

TBA

November 27 Florida State Tallahassee TBA

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$

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Clipping Coupons Keeping Cash! By kelly day

Ways To Save On Life’s Essentials

H

ave you ever been behind one of those people at the supermarket with a cart full of groceries that hands the cashier a slew of coupons and then, magically, right before your eyes, the grocery total seems to whittle away to almost nothing? Yeah, I’m one of those people. Were you so amazed that you stood there in awe, completely forgetting your irritation at having to wait while the cashier scanned each coupon? If you have always wondered how to really put those coupons to work, let me fill you in. First, let’s think about reasons for couponing. The most obvious reason? To save money, of course. It’s my money, and I intend to keep as much of it as I possibly can. Plus, I can stockpile the items that my family uses most often, like health and beauty products, nonperishables or frozen veggies. Kids will learn the value of a dollar, how to subtract a $1.50 coupon from the cost of a $5 box of cereal, as well as having the patience to wait for the item they want to go on sale. Another unexpected benefit is that I can donate items purchased with coupons to charitable causes, like food banks and local shelters. Coupons are used to increase sales and promote product or store loyalty. Generally, they fall into two categories: manufacturer coupons and store coupons. Manufacturer coupons are reimbursed to the store by the manufacturer or vendor -- they have a bar code and specific terms outlined on them, including a mailing address. Store coupons are trickier -- they will have the name of the store on them, and usually do not have terms for reimbursement printed on them. Since most stores will allow you to combine a store coupon with a manufacturer coupon per item, it’s important to know the difference between the two.

Photo courtesy of Istockphoto.com

It is important to remember to print coupons only from legitimate websites, be sure to use them by their expiration date and never make a photocopy of a

coupon.

Find a way to organize your coupons that works for you. I keep my weekly coupon inserts and store flyers in a file storage box. Each week, I put the coupons that I plan on using in an envelope in my purse, so that I have them at the store when I decide to pop in. Some of my friends file their coupons in a big three-ring binder and take that to the store. Some couponers buy a small organizer and keep it in their purse or car. The important thing to remember is to have your coupons at the store when you go.

Here are some tips for getting the most out of your coupons. Plan your shopping trips around what’s on sale and what coupons are available. There are numerous Web sites dedicated to helping you do just that, so find one that really zeroes in on the stores you frequent and breaks down the sales in a way that makes it simple. I use southernsavers.com and afullcup.com, but there are many other excellent ones out there. Hang on to that coupon until the item you want goes on sale. Pair the sale item with both a manufacturer and a store coupon (if available) to get the most bang for your buck. Know your store’s coupon policies -- some even accept their competitors’ coupons -- but policies can vary from store to store. I find that making two or three weekly trips to the grocery store for smaller transactions is less stressful than trying to do all of my weekly shopping in one fell swoop. Lastly, be sure to plan your family’s menu around what you have purchased on sale and with coupons. Before I turn you loose in the grocery store, here are some closing thoughts. When you put your coupon plan into action, you are really doing a service to your family. Utilizing coupons to stretch your family budget is one of the smartest things you can do, especially given the current economy. For me, it’s about spending less on the things we have to buy versus having more for the things we want to buy. Getting more items for less money just makes sense. It’s your money, so go ahead and keep it!

Coupon Sources • • • • • • •

Sunday newspaper inserts Smartsource.com Redplum.com Coupons.com Magazines In the store (tear pads, shelf dispensers, etc.) Catalinas (printed on a register tape at the store after a sale) • Store coupons from weekly/monthly advertisements • Store Web sites periodically have printable coupons • Get on your store’s various mailing lists for parents of babies and preschoolers, for wine lovers, organic products, etc giggle

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for dads. by dads. p

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Making Football A Family Affair By chris wilson

Crisis! : After a long, stressful week, some of us just look forward to watching weekend football. When you sit down to watch the TV, you realize you have to interrupt the all-important tenth viewing of “Toy Story” this week. What is a Dad to do?

Solution:

Integrate the family into your football weekend. Get everybody excited about the game first thing in the morning. When you wake up, make sure to announce that today is “Gator [or fill in your favorite team] Day.” Talk about the game a lot.

Teaching the Basics of the Game

Football strategy is complex. Explaining the basics as the game plays out will help children follow with more excitement.

Pick a team: Even if you have no rooting interest in the game you’re watching, pick one. First, this will avoid the question, “Well, if you don’t care who wins, why do you have to watch the game?” Second, children who don’t yet understand the nuances of the game will have more fun if everybody is rooting for one side over another. The Field: The 100-yard long gridiron may be hard to explain to younger children, although a handy yard stick may help. But children who have had experience with measurements and distances are more likely to understand the field. The field is split into two 50-yard halves with each half’s numbers increasing from the end zone toward midfield, which makes for fun calculations when the ball crosses the 50.

Photo courtesy of Istockphoto.com

Offense, Defense, Special Teams: Football

has three phases. Explaining the basic function of offense (to try to score) and defense (to try to stop the other team’s offense from scoring and to get the ball) always goes a long way toward football comprehension. Explain special teams plays when they happen, since there are fewer.

Down & Distance: Explain to your fellow viewers that

a field goal is always a fun discussion. Kids can subtract the amount of downs played from four to see how many chances an offense has left or when a team might get the ball back.

Penalties: The hardest thing to explain about foot-

ball (next to the actual Xs and Os) are all of the penalties, simply because of the sheer number of rules and various consequences. Kids will wonder why plays stop “before somebody gets tackled,” or what are those little yellow hankies the referees are throwing all over the field? Explain more common penalties, such as holding or off sides, that are likely to be seen throughout the contest. If your children understand the yardage on the field, you can have them add or subtract penalty yardage and downs.

Scoring: Touchdown!

There are a lot of ways to score in football. All of them are exciting. Whether you’re rooting for a field goal before half time or a potential blocked kick late in the game, embellishing the importance of scoring around children is just more fun. Math skills are used when adding points or weighing coaching decisions late in the game. The actual action going on during the game - the high-flying catches, hard-hitting tackles and last second jukes for touchdowns - is all gravy once the entire family can sit down for a game. Of course, it doesn’t hurt to have good grub on hand too!

each team has four downs, or chances, to advance the ball ten yards towards its end zone and the team’s “reward” for going ten yards is an additional four downs. The fourth down option between going for a first down, punting or possibly booting

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why I love raising my family in

gainesville

a

After meeting at Newberry High School, Danny and I moved to Gainesville and have never looked back. We used to dream of “bigger and better” places, but quickly came to realize that Gainesville has everything we could ever want in a town. We have been together for eight great years. We have two children, Aubree (age 3) and Aidan (18 months). We have found Gainesville to be a great town to raise our children and we look forward to many more happy years ahead. My husband is a firefighter/ paramedic for Marion County and loves being able to help people in the community. One of the best aspects of his profession is that it allows him to fully support my career and passion, which is doing hair. In February 2010, I ventured into business for myself along with three other independent business women to open Vintage Glamour in Haile Plantation Village Center. I was overwhelmed by the outpouring of support from my clients, the community, and even strangers who all wanted to help see our business succeed. Being self-employed and Danny’s flexible schedule has allowed us more time with our growing children so we have the opportunities to appreciate Gainesville’s small town atmosphere. We love going to the Farmer’s Market on Saturday mornings, bringing our boat to the river, and even an occasional night out on the town. As most people in Gainesville would agree the best time of year is the fall, or as we all know it, football season! Going to the games is always fun, but sometimes the best times are had at home with friends and family cheering on the Gators. One of the best attributes of Gainesville is its great location and the ability to get to almost anywhere for a quick getaway. From the beach to Disney, there is always something close or right in Gainesville for us to do with our family.

The Michaux’s

Danny, Erica, Aubree and Aidan giggle

magazine • june 2009

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trips giggle’s

Wonders of the world! BY Janet Groene

Anyone with a search engine knows the world is filled with Wonders: Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, the New Seven Wonders (2007) and many more. Here’s just a start of world-class “Wonders” where you and your children will form lasting memories.

The Dunes

The dunes of northwest Florida are high. But when it comes to skyscrapersize sand dunes, consider Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area (OregonsAdventureCoast.com). Edging the Pacific Ocean are 40 miles of dunes up to 600 feet high, where families can sand-board, ride ATV’s, hike, photograph and bird watch. On the freshwater shores of Lake Michigan is Sleeping Bear Dunes National Seashore (sleepingbeardunes.com). Boat, hike, swim, explore historic lighthouses, learn about Great Lakes history at Fishtown and attend performances at Interlochen, 30 minutes away. Details: Fly into Traverse City, Michigan, 28 miles from the Seashore. To fly to the Oregon Dunes connect via SFO or Portland into Southwest Oregon Regional (OTH).

Stonehenge, England

There isn’t much razzmatazz here for rambunctious children, but kids do love ancient mysteries. Get them thinking about how the stones were placed here almost 5,000 years ago when there were no cranes or helicopters. The average visitor stays about one hour. Details: Trains leave London every half hour for Salisbury. In season, they’re met by buses for the nine-mile trip to Stonehenge. The site is flat and walking easy; some paths are suitable for (preferably fat tire) strollers and wheelchairs. There are toilets and a year-round kitchen, but this is an outdoors activity. Bring rain gear. Go to VisitBritain.com Pre-trip: Many adult and children’s books are available on Stonehenge and on Britain in the Bronze Age.

Italy’s Leaning Tower of Pisa

Here’s another puzzler for young engineers and architects. What keeps this storybook tower from falling down? The 700-year-old bell tower is just one structure in the Field of Miracles, a grassy greenspace where kids love to gambol. Ornate medieval buildings form backgrounds for family photos.

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Details: Pisa is served nonstop from New York in season; connecting flights come from major European hubs. Walking tours are best for older children and for adults who carry toddlers in backpacks. Independent travelers like the hop-on, hop-off bus. See the cathedral, city squares with sidewalk cafes, and take a boat ride on the Arno River. Pisa has hotels and restaurants for all budgets. Pre-Trip: Learn some Italian phrases and read up on Galileo, who lived and worked here.

The Dead Sea

In a current competition for the Seven Wonders of Nature, the Dead Sea is a definite contender. Jagged mountains surround the lowest spot on earth, nearly 1,400 feet below sea level. Children get a science lessons while swimming in water where they have super buoyancy because of the high salt content. History hunting doesn’t get much better than this. Even small children will relate to Jewish and Christian sites. Visit Masada, the ancient fortress in the hills, and countless points of interest in the Plain of Sodom area. Discover local spas and clinics too. Cleopatra was said to have had her eye on these healing waters and minerals. Enjoy local arts and crafts, a bicycle jaunt, a Jeep safari and Israeli cuisine. Details: Go to (www.goisrael.com). Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion International Airport is 25 minutes from Tel Aviv and 35 from Jerusalem. Non-stops are available from U.S. cities including Atlanta and Miami. It’s best to have a travel agent arrange a seamless trip including sightseeing tours. Pre-trip: Read nature, history and Bible books.

Pyramids of Giza, Egypt

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A dad, whose children were ages 2 and 5 when the family went to the Great Pyramids, says the trip paid years of dividends. “Kids are pretty portable at that age, much easier to take along than teenagers,” he observes. “They were oblivious to the pyramids but fascinated by camels. However, my daughter, who was five at the time started remembering the trip when she studied Egypt and related topics in school.” Details: You’ll fly into Cairo. Both Cairo and Giza are modern cities with good hospitals, hotels and many American fast food signs. Visit Egypt.travel for information. Pre-trip: Learn some Arabic phrases and get library books on ancient Egypt, mummies and pharaohs. Egyptian history is also tied to Bible study.

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Photos courtesy of Istockphoto.com, Stonehenge photo by Laurel Housden Photography, Pyramid photo by Verve Studio

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If the tower is open for climbing, kids must be age eight or older. Make a game of taking sights to see how many other tall buildings are leaning. They’re called “The Other Leaning Towers.” Go to ItalianTourism.com.


Grand Canyon National Park

No passports are required to see America’s own, 1.2million-acre Grand Canyon. More than a mile deep at its deepest, it’s a must-see for five million international and U.S. visitors a year. As a natural wonder it’s eye-popping. It’s also an archaeological wonder. The oldest human artifacts found here date back 12,000 years; more than 300 sites have been identified.

Georgia’s Okefenokee

What a science lesson! Over 1,500 plant, 355 bird, 89 mammalian, 47 reptile, nine amphibian, and 17 fish species are found here. Accommodations range from campsites to luxury lodges. Hike on your own or sign up for tours by mule, boat or vehicle.

Visitors from all over the planet come to “The Land of Trembling Earth,” source of both the Suwannee and St. Mary’s rivers. Yet its nature lessons are under-appreciated by Americans. Flora and fauna here are unique and, if you’re adventurous, you can canoe or kayak from here to the Gulf of Mexico.

Details: Fly into Phoenix, Flagstaff or the small Grand Canyon Airport. The South Rim is open all year and has the most facilities. The North Rim on the Utah side has only one lodge, and is closed from mid-October to mid-May. It’s more than 200 miles by road from North Rim Village to South Rim Village, so don’t try to see both sides in a short vacation. Go to nps.gov/grca.

Fishing is awesome and there’s also history, including the ghost town that once had a hotel, school, church, shops and a railroad. Take a ranger-guided boat tour, rent a boat or launch your own boat, canoe or kayak.

Pre-trip: Get nature books for the Canyon, which contains five of the seven life zones and three of the four desert types in North America. Read up on PaleoIndians.

National Wildlife Refuge

Details: Go to fws.gov/okefenokee. Summers are hot and buggy; visit autumn through spring. Bring mosquito and tick sprays, layered clothing, sun protection and water bottles. Some areas allow pets but keep them on a short leash and watch for snakes. There several entrances to the Refuge and a variety of lodging, camping and outfitters. Pre-trip: Get nature books. Kids are especially fascinated by the Refuge’s meat-eating plants, pitcher plants, water lilies and the edible “gator tater”.

Janet Groene is a professional travelwriter who lives near Live Oak. She blogs at (www.) SoloWomanRV.blogspot.com


Calendar of Events August 5-8 2010 Babe Ruth 12U Fast Pitch World Series Hal Brady Recreation Complex, Alachua

August 29 Gainesville Wedding Expo Noon Phillips Center gainesvilleweddingexpo.com

August 11 Family Arts Festival 5:30-7:30pm Fun for the whole family Trinity United Methodist Church info: TrinityGNV.org

September 4 Florida Gators Open 2010 Football Season! Gators vs. Miami (OH) Kickoff at noon Ben Hill Griffin Stadium

August 19-21 5th Annual Tyler’s Hope Golf Tournament Gainesville Country Club tylershope.org August 21 Rio Royale Benefit Gala for Kids Benefits Boys & Girls Club of Alachua County Reitz Union Grand Ballroom 5:30 p.m.-11 p.m. galaforkids.com

August 23

First Day of School: Alachua County public schools Santa Fe College & UF August 28 Tioga Town Fair 4 p.m.-8 p.m. Tioga Town Center Benefits Sebastian Ferrero Foundation

September 20-25 Just Between Friends Fall Sale Alachua County Fairgrounds www.jbfsale.com

Local Farmers’ Markets Monday - Tioga Town Center, 4 p.m.-7 p.m.

September 6 Labor Day

Wednesday - Union Street Farmers’ Market (downtown Gainesville Community Plaza), 4 p.m.-7 p.m.

September 12 Grandparents Day September 15-October 15 Hispanic Heritage Month

Thursday - Downtown High Springs, 2 p.m.-6 p.m.

September 18 2010 Alachua Start! Heart Walk NFRMC Duck Pond, Newberry Rd. 8 a.m. alachuaheartwalk.kintera.org

Saturday - Haile Plantation Village Center, 8:30 a.m.-Noon; Alachua County Farmer’s Market at NW 13th St. & U.S. 441, 8:30 a.m.-1 p.m.; Downtown Newberry, 8:30 a.m.-2 p.m.

September 19 9th Annual Downtown Latino Festival Noon-5 p.m. Bo Diddley Community Plaza September 23 First Day of Fall

August September giggle

magazine • june/july 2010

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Giggle Magazine August/September 2010  

Family tailgating, back to school, school uniforms, football season.

Giggle Magazine August/September 2010  

Family tailgating, back to school, school uniforms, football season.

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