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p a re n t i n g


happy family • happy communityTM FEB/MAR 2015 • Volume 7 • Issue 1



Pro Tips From Real Grandmas pg. 22

116 Alachua County

Summer Camps

us plEasy & yummy

pasta lunches pg. 37

adorable DIy Valentines pg. 26

simply sweet Easter Baskets pg. 40 | february/march 2015 1

2 | february/march 2015 | february/march 2015


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PUBLISHER Nicole Irving ART DIRECTOR Allison Raber MANAGING Editor Dana Kamp GRAPHIC DESIGNER Claire Stortz Vice president of sales Shane Irving ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES Jen Bass, April Tisher executive assistant Sayeh Farah Contributing Writers Bobbi Bloom, Kelly Goede, Selena Garrison, Tara Griffin, Dana Kamp, Lisa Katz, Savanna Kearney, Helen Kornblum, Olivia Pitkethly, Ale Russian, Paggie Saintilien, Chelsea Stromfeld, April Tisher, Rebecca Vitkus Contributing Photographers Shandon Smith with Lifeprints Photography, Patricia Bishop Photography, Terri Smith Photo, Verve Studio Interns Annaleigh Bonds, Sydney Brodie, Amanda Ferguson, Cresonia Hsieh, Savanna Kearney, Colleen McTiernan, Haley Ponnock, Ale Russian, Chelsea Stromfeld, Rebecca Vitkus

Mission Statement Giggle Magazine is a modern and refreshing parenting publication that brings together families and their community. We make it our mission to find the joy and humor in parenting, focus on key topics and issues that relate to today’s parents and give parents the resources to be engaged, connected and present with their children during these important years. Irving Publications, LLC reserves the right to edit and/or reject any advertising. Irving Publications, LLC 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 Magazine 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 Mailing address

Physical address

5745 SW 75th Street 101 SW 140th Terrace Unit 286 Suite C Gainesville, FL 32608 Jonesville, FL 32669 p. 352.505.5821 f. 352.240.6499 Giggle Magazine is a registered trademark property of Irving Publications, LLC. All rights reserved. Giggle Magazine is published by Irving Publications, LLC. © 2015 | february/march 2015


from the publisher



warm smile, a big bear hug, a mushy kiss from your 2-year-old, the warm blanket made especially for you by your grandmother … these are all sweet signs of love. In today’s world, where we are swirling around like spilled marbles on a wood floor, we must make ourselves stop to soak in each of these precious moments. I know I am preaching to the choir. As a busy working mom of three, with countless commitments, responsibilities and a calendar packed to the max, sometimes I realize the end of the day has crept up on me. I walk into the dark house, with all my boys sleeping and say, “I missed it!” I missed those mushy kisses and hearing about their days. I know they understand, but some days my heart just breaks. They aren’t going to be young forever or really “need” Mommy so much. I know you mommies out there hear me. Whether you’re home with your little ones or work outside of the house, the days seem to fly by and the treasured moments sometimes get lost in the shuffle.



So, as we embark on the second month of the new year, the month flooded with hearts and doilies and chocolate morsels, I hope that you and I can challenge ourselves to find the time to be still long enough to capture those sweet moments of love each and every day. OUR NEW GIGGLE COFFEE CUP Nicole Irving, Publisher

Age: 9 Favorite food: Pizza

Matthew Like us on Facebook /GIGGLEMAGAZINE



Favorite movie: "Captain America - Winter Soldier" Favorite sport/activity: Flag football Favorite book: "Hooper Finds a Family" Favorite treat: Ice cream

follow us on Twitter @GIGGLEMAGAZINE | february/march 2015

Visit us on Pinterest /GIGGLEMAGAZINE

Follow us on Instagram @GIGGLEMAGAZINE

Boy photo by Verve Studio. © 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved.

Cover Cutie!

meet our | february/march 2015


6 | february/march 2015

Summer Camp Guide 2015!

February * March 2015 happy family • happy community




8 lifesavers 7 Ways to Support Your Heart Health

66 Homeschool corner

11 the parent life

70 in the classroom

14 just the two of us It's a (Stay-at-Home) Date: 10 Great

72 family learning

Parenting in Public: All Eyes on You

75 26

Family photos by Lifeprints Photography. Valentine photo by Giggle Magazine. Boy photo by Verve Studio.

The Benefits of Park Day Florida Standards Assessment 101

Making Memories: Documenting Your Spring Break

Ideas for Your Next Date Night

16 two cents Tips to Save Money at the Pump

happy community

20 happy family

The Fuller Family

99 Extra, extra

22 grandparents

Jordan Thorp and The Smile Team

What Makes a Successful Sleepover at

103 calendar

Grandma's House? 24 gIGGLE STAMP

Going Green

conception 2 college

forks & spoons 34 delish Green Food Fun

82 expecting

37 Lunch Box Pasta Salad for Lunch!

86 infant

38 in the fridge Greek Out: The Benefits of Greek Yogurt

health 45 get MOVING

Get Them Active: Choosing the Right Activities for Your Child 46 get healthy

Bumps and Bagels ... and Babies!

48 get pretty

Skin-to-Skin Care and Babywearing:

Benefits Beyond Bonding


Toddler Independence: The Dos and Don'ts of This New Journey 90 early years

Brushing Up on Healthy Habits

92 kids

Reading Struggles: Therapy or Just More Practice? 94 tweens

Safety in a Tween's Digital World

Bumps, Bites and Blisters, Oh My!


P. 75

97 teens

Prom + Proposal = Promposal!

Mascara Masters!

happy home 56 organized chaos






Queries from the Curious 61 make it. fix it. clean it.

Plus: 26 30 40 50 52

happy family • happy communityTM

Vintage Teacup Crafts 62 OUr space

The Katzes' Passover Table

Valentine Art From the Heart Understanding Your Child's Love Language Egg-cellent Easter Baskets Supporting Healthy Pregnancies, Births and Babies Big Weight Loss Challenge 2015 Update

FEB/MAR 2015 • Volume 7 • Issue 1




Pro Tips From Real Grandmas pg. 22


116 Alachua County

Summer Camps


s plu EASY & YUMMY




26 40

Photo by Verve Studio | february/march 2015





Ways to Support Your Heart Health


Think about your heart. That amazing little organ that pumps blood throughout your body, beats faster when you run, and whose sound was the only thing that would calm your hysterical infant at 2 a.m. February is American Heart Month and we are celebrating that precious heartbeat by giving you seven Lifesavers for preserving your and your family’s heart health.


Wear red on February 6th in honor of National Wear Red Day.

This simple act raises awareness of the need to be proactive in our fight against heart disease. Encourage coworkers, friends and family to join you in wearing red! 2.

Get moving!

Even if it’s a short walk after dinner, do something active that gets your heart pumping. Be a good example for your child by showing him how important it is to exercise, however it fits into your family’s lifestyle. Physical activity several times each week can strengthen your heart, lower blood pressure and cholesterol, help maintain a healthy body weight and become a fun, bonding experience for your family. 3.

Prepare heart-healthy meals with your family.

Let them see the ingredients that you put in the dishes, and which ones you avoid or substitute. Use lots of fruits and vegetables, beans and nuts (if there isn’t a nut allergy in the family), healthy cooking oils, herbs and spices, and lean meats. Try to use very little sugar and salt. Visit for amazing

8 | february/march 2015

recipes (and recipe books for purchase or download) that feature foods that are good for your heart. 4.

Do not smoke and avoid areas where secondhand smoke is present.

Most of us know smoking can cause lung cancer, but smoking also increases the risk of peripheral artery disease, aortic aneurysm, coronary heart disease and stroke. Breathing smoke-filled air can be extremely harmful as well. American Heart Association explains that nonsmokers who are exposed to secondhand smoke at work or home increase their risk of developing heart disease by 25 – 30 percent. 5.

Reduce your stress levels.

Whether you meditate, pray, practice yoga, listen to calming music or simply take a few slow breaths several times a day, find a way to relax your mind and body. This can help lower blood pressure and prevent stress-related reactions like overeating, smoking and drinking. Share your strategies with your child so he has ways to calm himself when stress or anxiety is building, as a child and an adult.


Visit your doctor for annual checkups.

Be aware of your health statistics. Living what you believe to be a “healthy” lifestyle might not be enough for some people. Talk with your doctor, and your child’s pediatrician, about cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar levels, as well as weight and growth changes. Outside the doctor’s office, track heart health with the Heart360 program on 7.

Know the warning signs.

Pain in the center of the chest is not the only sign of a heart attack. Shortness of breath, nausea, lightheadedness, and pain in the arms, back, neck, jaw or stomach can also be forewarning of a heart attack. A stroke victim may have slurred speech, weakness or numbness in one or both arms, and one side of the face may be drooping. Some symptoms will happen suddenly while some may start slowly and progress. Call 9-1-1 if you think it is possible you or someone else is experiencing a heart attack or stroke. Emergency medical staff can begin lifesaving treatments as soon as they arrive, and give the heart the extra care it needs to keep on beating. ✽

A lifetime of family memories.

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Reid W. Montini DMD, MS, PA Dr. Reid W. Montini attended Florida State University for his undergraduate studies, received his dental degree from the Harvard School of Dental Medicine and completed his residency in orthodontics at the University of Florida. Dr. Montini is an active member of numerous professional organizations and is dedicated to staying current with the latest advances in orthodontic | february/march 2015 10 treatment and technology.

At Cohen & Montini Orthodontics, our top priority is to provide the highest quality orthodontic care in a patient-friendly environment.

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352-332-7911 Call today to schedule your complimentary consultation



t he pare n t life

Parenting in Public: All Eyes on You BY KELLY GOEDE

a gentle touch on the shoulder, holding your child’s hand or a quiet whisper is more effective than a raised voice, harsh tone or physical redirection. ❉ With any tantrum or misbehavior, a little fact-finding may be all you need to get things back on track. Another mama to two children, Stefanie Smith, reminds us, “A lot of meltdowns are related to being hungry, tired or overwhelmed, so I analyze that and see if I can meet those needs if they have them.” If your child is still acting up after all true needs are met, “You can always apply the humorous approach and pretend they aren’t yours,” says mama to three, Shannon Sechrest. Joking aside, sometimes you are doing everything right and your child just isn’t having it. In that case, the last resort you want to use is that big threat of leaving, and only pull it out if you are absolutely prepared to exit immediately. Nothing screams “ineffective” louder than a parent who has threatened an exit when both she and the child know full well that no one is going anywhere.

T © 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved

he public parenting arena is a daunting place to be when you have a child who will not obey. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve been in church, or the mall, or fill in any other public place where civilized behavior is expected, and had one of my four children causing a scene. I was grasping at straws for how to stem the flow of bad behavior without my normal time-out corner or a room to send them to for cool down time.

I polled my personal parenting panel and found that my fellow mama friends have all been there and have several tips to sail smoothly through public parenting. Thankfully, the solution to dealing with your child’s naughtiness when not at home is not rocket science. As with most quality parenting tactics, it just takes planning, execution and consistency. ❉ Julie Griffis and Valerie Miller, both mothers to two children, agree that you must take your child away from the crowd, get down on her level and communicate to her that her behavior is out of bounds.

Many times you will have to remove your child entirely from the environment where that problem behavior is occurring, with the hopes that the behavior will improve and she can return to whatever she had been previously disrupting. ❉ If children are old enough to comply, you can brainstorm a code word to be uttered when your child is losing it, signaling to her in a non-embarrassing way that she needs to cool it. Mama to two Jenna Hunnicutt says, “I’m a big believer in not embarrassing my kids or making any type of scene.” Sometimes

Consistency and follow-through, however painful, are absolutely key to communicating to your child that you mean business. Remaining calm and kind during the process is also essential, even when your child has pushed you to the brink of insanity. At the end of the day, keeping your relationship with your child intact should be the underlying goal, even while you’ve spent the day knee deep in discipline. ✽

Giggle Tip! You may have to find a different tactic for each of your children. Unique personalities sometimes warrant distinctive discipline methods. | february/march 2015


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parent app!


Do you have photos on your iPhone that you’ve been meaning to send to the printer? Instantly Framed can help! This iPhone app makes it quick and easy for you to print photographs from your camera roll, Facebook and even Instagram. Choose from five photo sizes and have your picture printed onto professional photo paper, set on a 12-by-12-inch mat and framed. For $65 (threeday shipping is included), the photo comes packaged beautifully— perfect to present as a gift.

SPECIAL Giggle Reader $10 Discount! Use code Giggle10 Expires 3.15.15

What would you do if... your child said a bad word in a public place? It really depends on the age. Neither my 5- nor 2-year-old really understands foul language. My 5-year-old has once used a bad word within correct context. I did not want to embarrass her, so I bent down to her level and asked her what she meant by using that word and if she knew that it was not appropriate. People are usually understanding about those situations with children. –Theresa Westberry, mom of 2 When my son was about 2 he heard a bad word at a party and thought it was the best word ever. We tried to redirect with words that rhymed (to no avail), but at that age there is no intention behind the language so we just apologized to the gathered guests and tried to redirect him. Now he is 12 and if he uses inappropriate language he knows exactly what he is doing. Since he is trying to get a rise out of us, he gets a verbal warning reminder to watch the language and then we have a discussion at home about his inappropriateness. If it is particularly offensive he does have to apologize for his words, but honestly there is no point in drawing more attention and feeding into the need for preteen/teen drama. –Loren Smyth, mom of 2 | february/march 2015



j us t t he t w o o f us

It’s a (Stayat-Home) Date: 10 Great Ideas for Your Next Date Night BY OLIVIA K. PITKETHLY, MA, LMHC

When you’re a parent, date night goes beyond choosing the right restaurant or movie. It also means you have to pick a day with no other family obligations, find a babysitter and probably spend about double the money. To make your dating life easier, we’ve compiled a list of fun things you and your loved one can do without leaving the house. So put the kids to bed and get ready for a date night in!

Sound of Music

Create playlists of your favorite songs that remind you of each other and then dance the night away. Later, you can listen to the songs and remember your fun night!

Laugh Out Loud

Break out the popcorn and movie theater candy without having to share with the kids! Watch your favorite comedy and chuckle until your sides hurt!

Star Struck

Memory Lane

Pop the cork on the type of champagne you drank at your wedding and watch your wedding video. Reminisce on the day and all

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Date night doesn’t have to be a weekend night! Mix things up and choose a Tuesday evening for fun couple time. the moments that brought you two together. Then dream about the places you’d like to visit and the memories you’d like to make as a couple in the next 10 years.

Aloha Means Love

Visit the tropical islands of Hawaii in your own home! Prepare a homemade Hawaiian pizza with pineapple and ham, sip a Mai-Tai cocktail and play a tune on the ukulele! Leis and grass skirts optional!

Be Flexible

Download a tutorial of couples yoga and practice in the living room. Expect to make mistakes and laugh at them! Then cool off with a late night dip in the pool.

Do You Fondue?

Slice fresh veggies, breads and cheeses and prepare a fondue meal together. Don’t forget the chocolate dipped fruit for dessert!

Sports Night

Grab some game day munchies, wear your favorite team’s colors and watch a game on

television. If your honey loves sports, he or she will love you even more for coming up with the idea! If your team isn’t playing, get moving and challenge your partner to a Wii competition or a game of hoops on the driveway. Winner gets a back rub!

Your Favorite Restaurant at Home

Order take-out from your favorite place to dine as a couple, maybe where you love to celebrate anniversaries or where you went on your first date. Light candles, play some classical music and have a quiet and romantic dinner. Slow dance in the kitchen if the mood strikes you!

Immerse Yourselves in Culture

Choose a culture and then plan your night around it, complete with dinner, movie and music. For example, dish out your favorite pasta dish while listening to Italian opera. Then, snuggle on the couch to watch the classic “Roman Holiday.” ✽

© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved

Take your date to the backyard! Grill some steaks on the deck and pair with your favorite red wine. After dinner, cozy up under a blanket in front of a campfire, toast some marshmallows and gaze at the stars.

Giggle Tip! | february/march 2015



t w o ce n t s

Tips to Save Money at the Pump As gas prices continue to drop, motorists should take advantage of their savings at the pump and invest it back into their vehicles. By spending a little now to increase fuel efficiency, drivers can multiply fuel savings and save more money at the pump, according to the Car Care Council.

Here are a few simple steps for motorists to be car care aware to improve fuel efficiency and save money in the long run:

MOTOR OIL Improve gas mileage by 1 to 2 percent by using the grade of motor oil recommended by the manufacturer.

Engine performance Keep your car properly tuned to improve gas mileage by an average of 4 percent. TIRE PRESSURE Keep tires properly inflated and improve gas mileage by up to 3.3 percent. AIR FILTERS Replacing clogged air filters on older vehicles can improve fuel economy and will improve performance and acceleration on all vehicles.


For more tips to increase savings and fuel efficiency for your vehicle, visit | february/march 2015


• Pay attention to your car’s individual maintenance schedule. Many jobs can be done without the assistance of a mechanic, including checking the fluids in the car. This process ensures that your car has the right amount of fluids, potentially saving thousands of dollars on unnecessary repairs. Don’t wait for the light on the dashboard to light up when you can easily and quickly give your car a quick checkup and avoid future headaches.

• With nails, rocks and other debris scattered in the road just waiting to pop a tire, it’s important to make sure your car is prepared for such a situation. Because all tires naturally lose air, check the inflation and air pressure of your tires regularly. Be sure to check for cracks, bumps or other defects visible on your tires that could cause a blowout.

• Using windshield wipers that don’t work effectively is not just annoying — it’s dangerous. Poor visibility caused by a lack of wiper fluid can lead to an accident, so make sure you always have some handy. Avoid using water as it can freeze and cause damage to the car. Change your wiper blades at least once per year, regardless of whether you believe they’re damaged. A low-cost purchase of quality wiper blades will cost much less than the repair of an accident! ✽

© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved

GAS CAP Damaged, loose or missing gas caps allow gas to vaporize into the air.

Money-Saving Car Maintenance | february/march 2015


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Your lawyer has experience with divorce...

Shouldn’t your

financial advisor? The Banks Carroll Group is dedicated to thoroughly understanding your financial needs and then aligning them with the resources to meet or exceed them. With each of them having over 22 years of experience in financial services, they offer a wealth of knowledge to help build and protect your wealth whatever stage of life you are in. They also have additional experience and specialize in divorce-related financial matters as Certified Divorce Financial Analysts™ (CDFA™). Their combined experience in financial planning and investment management allow them to assist divorcees through this emotional and stressful time. They help identify assets and liabilities when completing financial affidavits, structure settlement options, set budgets, and perform income projections to be sure that the client knows what their financial future will be. To this end, they work with numerous divorce attorneys, insurance specialists, valuation specialists and CPA’s in an effort to make the process as seamless as possible while getting the best results. Their end goal is to give anyone having to go through a divorce, peace of mind. Their business is built on trust, integrity & knowing the client.

Services • Divorce Financial Planning and Analysis • Financial Planning • Asset Management • Estate Planning • Retirement Planning • Insurance/Long Term Care Insurance • Lending Services/Mortgages • 529 Plans

Ashley Banks is the Producing Branch Manager of the Gainesville Florida Morgan Stanley branch. She is a Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP®), a designation awarded by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. As a CFP® she has completed extensive education requirements to better understand and enhance the financial planning process. Additionally, Ashley is a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst® (CDFA™) which specifically focuses on the financial side of divorce. These two combinations allow for her to be a complete resource for individuals needing financial direction before, during and after a divorce. Ashley is a graduate of the University of Florida with a major in Finance. Donna Carroll is a Certified Divorce Financial Analyst® (CDFA™). Her focus is on divorce financial strategies, retirement solutions and overall financial planning. Her passion is empowering & educating women about their financial future. The process begins with a thorough understanding of the client’s current situation and major life events and their impact. We work with the clients to develop specific strategies for income, overall budgeting and lifetime goals. This strategy results in providing the client with an asset allocation strategy that is customized to match the client’s goals and objectives. Donna’s years of experience in this industry have allowed her to witness many market cycles and how to avoid mistakes based on emotions and help clients understand their situation and better know what to expect. They are both very involved in the Gainesville community, serving on the Board of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Alachua County, members of Children’s Home Society Auxiliary Board, Women Linked In, Women’s Giving Circle, GFWC Gainesville Woman’s Club. Members of Association of Divorce Financial Planners & Institute for Divorce Financial Analysts.

Ashley Banks, CFP®, CDFA™ Branch Manager Financial Advisor

Donna Carroll, CDFA™ Financial Advisor ©2012 Morgan Stanley LLC. Member SPIC. GP11-01092P-N07/11 6766777 SEG005 11/11

Banks Carroll Group at Morgan Stanley 4965 NW 8th Avenue • Gainesville, FL 32605

352-332-9300 | february/march 2015



happy fa m ily

Favorite vacation: We try to go to the beach or Cherry Lake a couple times each year. Our next family vacation will be to Washington, DC. Hopefully we can go in the spring when the cherry trees are blooming! Why we love living in Gainesville: Gainesville is home. We both grew up here. It is the perfect size and there is always something to do. Plus, most of our family is here or close by.

The Fuller Family Tim, Sarah, Emma (11), Anna (10) and Layla (8) PHOTOS BY LIFEPRINTS PHOTOGRAPHY

Occupation(s): Tim is the HR Administrative Officer at Malcome Randall VA Medical Center. Sarah is a Quality Assurance Specialist at LifeSouth Community Blood Centers.

Favorite sports to play/extracurriculars to do: Family bike rides and roller-skating.

Favorite family meal: Pizza or those rare occasions when everyone gets to go to Publix and pick out their own dinner.

What makes our kids laugh: Each other!

Favorite date spot: BJ’s Brewhouse. Movie in our DVD player right now: “The Hunger Games.” The kids’ favorite books: Emma loves mysteries, Anna loves books about animals and Layla’s current favorite is “Star Wars Jedi Academy.” Mommy and Daddy’s favorite TV shows: “The Walking Dead,” “Hell on Wheels” and “The Voice.” Pets: Jack (Dachshund) and Minnie (Meagle), Sophie the cat, three gerbils, five chickens and fish. Websites we love: Pinterest, Facebook.

20 | february/march 2015

Favorite sports to watch: Gator football and basketball.

Something special about our family: Tim takes turns taking the girls on Daddy-Daughter dates every month. It is something that is very important to all of them. That quality time is irreplaceable. Favorite picnic spot: Westside Park. Favorite family activity: Family night every Friday night, usually involving pizza and a movie. First word you think of when we say “family”: Everything. Three words that describe our family: Happy, Fun and (a little) Weird.

Tim takes turns taking the girls on Daddy-Daughter dates every month. That quality time is irreplaceable. | february/march 2015



g ra n d pare n t s

What Makes a Successful Sleepover at Grandma’s House? BY dana kamp

It's time for a getaway at Grandma's house! With these fun ideas, you'll be set to host an exciting sleepover that your grandchildren will remember for years to come. Get ready for lots of love and tons of giggles!

Be sure to start with a plan. Be flexible and ready to modify your plan, but you need to have some options for the sleepover to be a success! —Bonnie Goede, GG to 4

—Patsye Dulmer, Mimi to 4

2. Be sure to get them outside daily. Visit parks/ playgrounds before the visit so you know what is suitable for your grandchildren. Also check out indoor activity spaces for those rainy days. Physical activity is extremely important to get in every day. 3. As tempting as it is to be the “good guy,” try to stick to their regular schedules as much as possible. Kids off schedule can be cranky and out-of-sorts, so adhere to the schedule to which they are accustomed. 4. Scout the theater listings for movies! Read reviews, talk to other parents and grandparents. Do the same for new DVDs. 5. Ask the parents for food preferences. A sleepover is not the time to introduce Brussels sprouts. Have snacks prepackaged for outings and general ease. 6. Even if your grandchildren are beyond naptime, plan a “quiet time” in the afternoon. Give them down time in a room with puzzles and books, and set a timer so they know when it’s time to come to you. You may need this break more than they. 7. Childproof your home … more than usual. If Mom and Dad aren’t visiting, that’s fewer eyes on the children. Better to spend the extra time rearranging than have something treasured broken or a child hurt by an object. —Donna Ray, Grandmommy to 6 (#7 arriving this summer)

Give them your undivided attention. Sitting and snuggling with those precious children, whether you’re watching “Barbie” or "Earth to Echo,” is the best thing you can do. Turn off your cellphone, watch what they want to watch or do what they want to do (feed the ducks or turtles, walk the dog, sit by the fire pit) and just listen to what they have to say! It’s the special, one-on-one time they crave and you 'll love. Grandchildren are the best. So enjoy the moment and make memories with them! —Susan Barefoot, Grandma to 4

22 | february/march 2015

© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved

Make sure to have lots of snacks and their favorite foods. Full tummies make happy grandbabies. And plan some special activities that they only get to do at Grandma’s house.

1. Plan ahead! For crafts, pre-cut things that are too difficult for the children to do. If they have to wait while you do that, they can lose interest quickly. Also, be sure the craft is age-appropriate. | february/march 2015



Gi g g le s t a m p ™ L U CKY CH ARMS

Spectrum Silver Necklace; $295; Lang Jewelers.



Citrus & Kale Potent C + E Masque; $70; Spa Royale.


Squeaky Green Herbal Shampoo Bar; $11.95;

It's time for picnics, flowers and St. Patrick's Day! Our Giggle Stamp feature is inspired by the gorgeous greens of springtime and the great outdoors.

F O X Y LA D Y These long, playful socks are perfect for transitioning your wardrobe from winter to spring.

BO WL ME O VER Lotus Four-Piece Serving Bowl Set in Citrus; $13.49;

Soxy Lady Smiling Fall Fox Knee High Socks; $10;


Coach Poppy Citrine Blossom; $45;


All About the Benjamins wallet in Gatsby’s Green Pebble; $48;



Lime Refresh Tonique; $38; Spa Royale.

24 | february/march 2015

Bring on the spring showers! Rubber boots make it fun and easy for kids to leap through puddles like a frog.

Frog Rain Boots; $35; | february/march 2015


Valentine Art from the heart! by savanna kearney | creative by giggle magazine

Although Valentine’s Day is often celebrated as a time for romance between you and your significant other, kids can take part in the fun too! Here are a few examples of fun and easy Valentine’s Day cards you can make with your little ones.



Toy Car

Buy a pack of toy boxcars from your local dollar store for this fun craft. Punch two holes in a rectangular piece of paper and tie the car on with string, twine, etc. 26 | february/march 2015

Gummy Worms

Heart-shaped candies and chocolates aren’t the only fun Valentine’s Day candy! Put a few gummy worms in a small plastic bag and staple a folded piece of paper over the opening.




In ancient Rome, Emperor Claudius II believed that single men would make better warriors, so he banned all young men from marrying. The martyred St. Valentine is remembered for performing secret weddings for young couples in love.

o Tic-Tac-Toe

Put a fun twist on traditional tic-tac-toe by using Tic-Tacs to play the game! Decorate a box of pink , red or white Tic-Tacs and attach them to the handmade game card.


l Paper Airplane

These paper airplanes will make your heart soar with fun messages written on them.


Fortune Cookies

Make your own sweet fortune cookies by writing a message on a thin strip of paper, then cut pieces of felt into circles and hotglue them into the shapes of cookies with the sweet fortune inside. | february/march 2015


28 | february/march 2015 | february/march 2015


Š 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved. | february/march 2015



Your Child's Love Language BY OLIVIA K. PITKETHLY, MA, LMHC

Two years ago I attended a therapy workshop about helping parents communicate with their children by identifying their love languages. I had heard about Gary Chapman’s book, “The Five Love Languages,” and often used it in my practice when working with couples, but the thought of using the concept with children was new to me. The more I learned, the more it fascinated me, and the more it made sense. | february/march 2015



n his book, “The Five Love Languages of Children,” Chapman writes that each child (and person, for that matter) has a method for expressing and receiving love. The languages are physical affection, words of affirmation, quality time, gifts and acts of service. He suggests that by learning our love languages, we can communicate more effectively with one another. Here’s an example: A child has an important exam next week. She studies hard every night and aces the exam. She comes home, excited to share the news with her mother, who is busy folding laundry. Her mother looks at the test, smiles and says, “Great job, Honey!” While this mother’s reaction appears appropriate, the child walks away feeling less than satisfied. Why? Because this child’s love language is physical touch. She would have much rather received a hug or a high-five rather than words of affirmation, which may very well be her mother’s love language. So, while the two appear to have healthy communication, there is something missing.

Chapman also writes about a child’s “emotional tank,” which needs to be filled with unconditional love to fuel him as he faces the challenges life offers. A child will draw strength from this tank and reach his full potential. A child will also respond easier to discipline when his emotional tank is full. I tried a little experiment with my 5-year-old when he was going through one of his “I don’t want to!” phases. Though Chapman explains it may be difficult to identify the love language of a very young child, I took a chance and identified his as quality time. A few times that week, I made sure my son had my undivided attention and my husband took him out for some quality daddy-son time too. What a difference it made in his behavior! By filling his emotional tank with his love language, he was happier, more affectionate and more willing to follow directions. Although you may have already identified your child’s primary love language, it’s important to utilize all the languages because they are all healthy ways to express emotion. What better way to teach a child how to unconditionally love someone than with a little variety!

Physical Touch

Saying “I love you” and “I’m proud of you” are great ways to communicate love to your child. But, don’t limit yourself to verbal affirmation; leave a Post-it note with a smiley face or send a text with some encouraging words to your child. Also mention specific moments where you were impressed by your child’s behavior, such as, “I saw the way you looked out for your sister today at the park. I love seeing how much you care about her.”

Quality Time

With busy schedules, this can be a difficult language for your family to accomplish, but it’s not impossible. Include your child in daily chores, such as grocery shopping and laundry, and make eye contact and smile while doing so. When you take your child to the park, resist checking your email on your phone and play with him by pushing him on the swings or playing hide-and-seek.


We just emerged from the holiday season, so you probably think your child has had her fill of gifts! But gifts can go beyond the pretty bows and latest gadget. You can write a story about your child, make her favorite meal or plant a tree together in the backyard.

Acts of Service

As parents, we do a lot for our children without even realizing we are providing acts of service. These can provide the love and stability your child needs from you. Whether you are helping him with homework, ironing his favorite item of clothing or volunteering with him to help the less fortunate, you are filling his emotional tank full of love for himself and for others. ✽

Discover your child's love language at!

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© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved.

When you think of expressing love through physical touch, you automatically think of hugs and kisses. Snuggling on the couch or stroking your child’s hair is another way to express love through touch. When your children approach their tweens, this can get a little tricky, as they become more independent and less affectionate. Other ways to fill their emotional tanks with physical touch can be to play games that require touch or give them a gift that is touchoriented such as a soft pillow, blanket or clothing.

Words of Affirmation | february/march 2015


forks & spoons

d elish


Naturally Green Foods Don’t feel like you have the time to create an edible green masterpiece? Just gather some naturally green foods to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in a fun and delicious way.

St. Patrick’s Day is almost here, and we know there’s no better way to celebrate than with green food on your plate. If you want an alternative to food coloring, these simple recipes will make everyone who sees your delicious food green with envy. GREEN MAC & CHEESE


Just when we thought we couldn’t love macaroni and cheese any more than we already do, we discovered that we could make our tasty comfort food green!

This protein-packed breakfast is a delicious meal for kids and adults alike.

Ingredients: 1 pound noodles, shape of your choice ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons butter 1 onion, minced 6 cups fresh spinach, packed 1 pound cheese, mixture of your choice ½ cup flour 2 cups milk Kosher salt to taste

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Combine eggs, milk, onion, kale and spices in a blender until the greens are pureed. Heat butter in a pan over medium-low heat. Once melted, pour egg mixture into pan, letting it sit for a couple minutes to warm. Stir and scramble as much as you desire, cooking until the eggs are done. Channel your inner Dr. Seuss and add a side of ham to create a festive dish of green eggs and ham!

Guacamole: Enjoy all the guac that you can handle in honor of St. Patty. It’s best when made with fresh avocados, so pick up fresh guacamole at the market or make some with your family! Cucumber Sandwiches: For a lunchtime sandwich fit for a royal tea party, place sliced cucumbers and cream cheese between two slices of your favorite bread. It’s crisp, refreshing and best of all, easy to make! Green Fruit Salad: Provide your family with a variety of green fruits to eat for a celebratory snack. Kiwi, green grapes, honeydew melon, green apples and pears are just a few options to pile onto your fruity plate. Mint and Pistachio: For dessert, consider green sweets that you can buy or prepare in advance. Mint chocolate chip cookies and ice cream are all great options. If you’re feeling adventurous, try some pistachio pudding or cake, too!

© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved.

Boil the noodles according to package directions, or until they are al dente. Rinse with cold water and drain. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a small pan, add the onions to cook over medium-low heat until cooked to your taste and set aside. Puree about 6 cups of spinach and half a cup of boiling water in a blender. Add the flour and melt ½ cup of butter in the same pot used to boil the pasta, stirring over low heat for one minute. Add milk and mix until smooth. Let simmer for a couple minutes until it thickens, then add cheese until melted. Add spinach puree and stir, then add pasta to the pot, tossing everything with the onions until combined.

Ingredients: 6 eggs 1 tablespoon whole milk 2 tablespoons onion, chopped 1 cup fresh kale, washed Salt and pepper to taste Butter (enough for frying)

Pesto: This sauce made of basil, pine nuts, garlic, Parmesan cheese and olive oil is perfect to toss with your favorite pasta or spread over some cheesy pizza. | february/march 2015


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forks & spoons


Pasta Salad for Lunch! BY ALE RUSSIAN

Alphabet Pasta Salad

Submitted by Sarah Hernandez Ingredients: 12 ounces alphabet-shaped pasta 8

slices thin bacon

½ cup Greek yogurt ½ cup whole milk 4

tablespoons white vinegar

½ teaspoon salt 10 ounces grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise ½ pound of cheddar cheese, shredded or cubed Ground black pepper and salt, optional

Figuring out something different to pack in your child’s lunch box can be a challenge. You want to make sure the food is nutritious and, at the same time, delicious so your child will actually eat it. Veggies are a hard sell, and eating a sandwich every day can be a bit monotonous. Mixing up a cold pasta salad is a great alternative! It’s delicious and you can make it fun by using different types of pasta your kiddo will love. Plus, since the veggies are usually cut into small pieces, your child will be more likely to eat them. Check out these two yummy recipe options! Store pasta salads in the fridge and separate into small servings to pack into your child’s lunch box. Include a cold pack to keep pasta cool until lunchtime!

Directions: Cook the pasta as instructed and let cool in cold water after rinsing. Cut the bacon slices into small pieces and sauté in a skillet until crisp. Mix the Greek yogurt, milk and vinegar in a bowl for the dressing. Mix the dressing with the drained pasta, bacon, tomatoes and cheddar cheese. Taste and add in black pepper and salt as you see fit!

© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved.

Whole Wheat Bowtie Pasta Salad Submitted by Maria Guitian

Ingredients: 8 ounces dried whole wheat bowtie pasta 8 ounces cooked chicken, shredded ½ cup shredded mozzarella cheese 5 ounces grape tomatoes, halved L cup Greek yogurt ranch dressing (mix dry ranch packet into Greek yogurt)

Directions: Cook the pasta as instructed on package, drain and let cool. Place the pasta in a large bowl. Add the chicken, mozzarella cheese, tomatoes and Greek yogurt ranch dressing and stir to combine. | february/march 2015


forks & spoons

i n t he fri d g e

gle Gig Tip


Since Gre ek is not as sw yogurt regular yo eet as gu little ones rt, your to swirl in may like so or granola me fruit for a healthy sn tasty, ack.

Greek Out: The Benefits of Greek Yogurt BY ALE RUSSIAN

Let’s face it. It can be hard to encourage your children to eat healthy when you’re not even completely sold on the idea. Some healthier choices just don’t taste that great, and we know many little ones cannot be fooled when it comes to the greens! Thankfully, a tasty healthy option has surfaced: Greek yogurt. The difference between Greek yogurt and regular yogurt is that Greek yogurt has gone through a straining process that removes the whey from it. Whey is the liquid that remains after milk has been curdled and strained, and removing it gives yogurt a creamier and thicker texture as well as a richer taste. Since it typically contains 40 percent less sugar and 38 percent less sodium than regular yogurt, it is a much healthier snack. Greek yogurt also has double the amount of protein in every bite, giving your kids the spark they need to get through the day.

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There are other surprising benefits to adding Greek yogurt to your grocery list. Here are just a few: Better digestive health

One amazing quality Greek yogurt has is the probiotics it contains. Probiotics are healthy bacteria that help combat the harmful bacteria that develop in your digestive tract. Eating Greek yogurt regularly increases the amount of good bacteria in your digestive tract and can help combat diseases like Irritable Bowel Syndrome and other intestinal diseases.

Lactose-intolerant friendly

Another great advantage Greek yogurt has is its lower content of lactose. The straining process removes much of the lactose that is harmful in dairy. If your child is lactose-intolerant, Greek yogurt could be the easy solution to keep dairy in his diet. Since the probiotics in the yogurt breakdown lactose sugar, it is much easier to digest and still provides the serving of dairy to keep a balanced diet.

Healthy bones

Greek yogurt contains tons of important nutrients such as calcium, magnesium, potassium and protein that keep your bones healthy and strong. Eating Greek yogurt every day will strengthen your bones in a natural way without the need to take additional supplements.

Yummy substitute

Consider using Greek yogurt as a substitute for unhealthy foods in your diet. It is a great substitute for mayonnaise in foods such as tuna or chicken salad and deviled eggs. The consistency will stay the same and your family will love the taste! It is also a delicious substitute for recipes that call for sour cream, keeping the creamy texture in the dish but all the calories and fat away from your diet. ✽ *Always consult with your doctor regarding your personal health and diet choices. | february/march 2015


Egg-cellent Easter Baskets Think beyond the traditional chocolate bunnies and plastic grass, and personalize a collection of Easter treats specifically for your child. These special baskets are the perfect holiday keepsake to treasure even when the candy is gone. creative by giggle magazine photo by patricia bishop photography

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Try these cute and inexpensive basket ideas!






• Stationery

• Stuffed Animal

• Book

• Change Purse

• Book

• Silly Putty

• Lipgloss

• Pacifiers

• Army Men

• Necklace

• Bath Toys

• Dinosaurs

• Bath Soap

• Bibs

• Rubik's Cube

• Swimsuit

• Superheroes

• Flower Seeds • Markers • Small Doll • Makeup • Book • Sidewalk Chalk

• Rattle • Lullaby CD • Swaddle Blankets • Socks

• Small Game • Ear Buds • Cars • Flashlight

• Brush • Sunglasses

• LEGO toys

• Hair Accessories

• Teething Rings

• Yoyo

• Nail Polish

• Baby Food

• Sports Ball

• iTunes Card

• Foam Letters

• Movies | february/march 2015


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g e t m o vi n g

Get Them Active: Choosing the Right Activities for Your Child by SELENA GARRISON

but it may be better to do different sports seasonally. Not only will this provide your child lots of opportunities to try out different activities, it allows your child’s body time to recuperate and the likelihood of overuse injuries. You also do not want your child to get burnt out on one activity and quit the activity completely. Watch for signs of enthusiasm! If your child loves what he is doing, it will show. Try not to allow your own past activities or preconceived ideas affect the options you give your child. If the goal is to help your child find something he really loves doing, letting him try several different activities will be very helpful.

Provide Time to Heal

My husband and I both grew up actively involved in sports. For him it was football, golf and track. For me it was dancing, cheerleading and swimming. In thinking about what activities to get our son involved in, we want to make sure to choose the right ones for him. There are so many options, but the most important thing is to get him involved in something active and something that he sees as enjoyable!

© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved.

Know Your Child’s Personality

If your child does not like the activity, he is not going to do it. And if you force him to do it, neither of you is going to enjoy it. Dragging your child to a Saturday

morning soccer game that he does not want to play in will make for misery all around. Choose something that your child will thoroughly enjoy. Think about whether your child is better suited for team activities or individual activities. Does he thrive on competition or prefer to perfect his skills? Would he prefer an indoor or outdoor activity? How much time does he (or YOU!) have to dedicate to practices and games? All of these things will come in to play when deciding what activities will be a good fit.

Provide Multiple Opportunities

Sometimes we have the tendency to have our child focus on only one sport,

Sports injuries are common, even with proper safety equipment. If your child is injured, be sure to allow his body time to heal completely before playing again. Repetitive injuries can cause life-long problems, so be smart about the healing process.

Get Active WIT H Your Child

You might also consider finding a few activities you can do together! Whether it is formal training (martial arts lessons, tennis lessons, etc.) or informal playtime (playing catch at the park, backyard flag football, basketball in the driveway, etc.), seeing you be active will encourage him to be active as well. In addition, this will give you the opportunity to bond with your child in a way that is healthy and fun for both of you! ✽

Look into the different activities in your area and the many benefits for their participants. Jodi Hunt at Sun Country Sports Center says, “Organized sports and activities teach children teamwork and improve listening skills. They also improve gross motor skills, coordination and self-confidence. Plus, children enjoy being active and competing with their friends. It's not always about being the best or winning the biggest trophy at a competition. We need to teach children at an early age that being active is FUN so they incorporate it into their daily lives as they get older and become adults.” | february/march 2015



g e t healt hy

Bumps, Bites and Blisters, Oh My!

No, you cannot get warts from touching frogs!


Parents love the baby soft, smooth skin our little ones sport, and often envy it. So when it is less than perfect, we panic. How do we identify what is a serious skin issue, and when should we call the doctor or just let it ride? Dermatitis

Molluscum Contagiosum

Another skin issue common to little ones is molluscum contagiosum. This is a

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Kids also get regular warts. Most often they are seen on the hands, feet or face. They are usually dome-shaped with hardened skin. Certain viruses cause warts to form. (No, you cannot get

them from touching frogs!) Dr. Canova recommends you have these looked at by a dermatologist if they hurt or don’t go away on their own.

Common Skin Issues

There are a host of other common issues that can cause blisters or sores; think chicken pox, poison ivy, bug bites or hand, foot and mouth disease. Your child is likely to come across at least one of these during his childhood. Dr. Canova cautions that with any skin condition, if there is a fever accompanying it, a rapid progression or worsening of symptoms, or if any of the mucus membranes are affected, you should contact your physician to have it checked out. ✽

Mom Tip: Paint clear fingernail polish on the back of buttons or snaps or on the back of watches to provide a barrier between them and your child’s skin if a nickel allergy seems to be the problem.

© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved.

Dermatologist Dr. Erica Canova from Gainesville Dermatology says one of the most common skin problems she sees with children is atopic dermatitis. Also known as eczema, it is usually a chronic problem characterized by scaly, itchy rashes. Your child’s doctor may do an allergy test to see if that is what is causing the rashes. Like contact dermatitis, which is caused by the skin coming in contact with something that sets off the reaction, it is not contagious. Contact dermatitis is triggered by things such as a nickel allergy, harsh detergents, soap or bubble baths. Nickel is often found in the buttons or snaps of pants, the backs of watches or in earrings. In cases of dermatitis, Dr. Canova recommends if the “rash” is mild and lasts less than two weeks, it is best to let it be. Watch it, keep the area clean and moisturized and use 1 percent Hydrocortisone cream, available over the counter, to keep itching at bay.

viral infection of the skin that showcases itself as small, round painless bumps that usually have a small indentation on the top. In children, they are often seen on the face, neck or armpits. This is more common than you think and can be spread with direct contact. If your child has this infection, it is best to not allow them to bathe with or share washcloths or towels with siblings. They are fine to attend school or swim in oceans and pools though. These little bumps can last a long time, sometimes 1-2 years, and are easily spread to other parts of the body by scratching. The best treatment is to leave them alone, if you can. Home remedies or OTC treatments generally do not work and may even aggravate the condition. If the molluscum is spreading or getting worse after several months, see your dermatologist. There are in-office treatments they can try in order to speed up the body’s healing process. | february/march 2015



g e t pre t t y


It's amazing what a little mascara can do to wake up those I-haven't-slept-through-thenight-since-2008 mommy eyes. Whether you want your lashes to have volume, length, more strength or more definition, there is a mascara wand to give you exactly the look you crave. We've chosen a few of our favorites to dress up your pretty eyes!

▲ FLOWER Outstretched Lengthening Mascara This false plush-lash effect mascara sculpts and intensely defines lashes to make eyes appear bigger and wider. Paraben-free, talc-free, phthalate-free, GMO-free and sulfate-free. Available in Deepest Black, Black and Black Cherry. $7.98, Walmart and

▲ Colorescience Mascara Formulated with advanced pentapeptide blend, this mascara provides volume and length and conditions lashes for dramatic, long-lasting finish. Humidity, water and smudge-resistant. $19.50, Gainesville Dermatology Aesthetic Center.

▲ Clinique Lash Building Primer Lash-conditioning undercoat and unique polymer combination boosts benefits of Clinique mascaras and holds mascara to lashes for a longer, fuller look. Moisturizing formula conditions and mends dry lashes. Ophthalmologist tested. $15, Clinique and Sephora.

▲ Calvin Klein One Color Signature Mascara Precision curved brush and patented lycra technology amplifies, shapes and lifts every lash. Allows for definition or volume with just a turn of the unique twist brush applicator cap. Ophthalmologist and dermatologist tested, safe for contact lens wearers. $18,

u L’Oréal Paris Voluminous Miss Manga Black Angel Mascara Contains the darkest neo black pigments from the entire Miss Manga mascara collection to give an intense and as-dark-as-youdare look. Lashes experience up to 15x the volume with the 360° Flexor brush. $7, Mass food and drug retailers nationwide.

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Flower mascara photos courtesy of Alison Brod PR. Other photos by Giggle Magazine.

FLOWER Intensif-Eye Volumizing Mascara ▼ Featuring a new 3-way brush that provides upper, lower and corner lash coverage. Clump and flake-free, paraben-free, talc-free, phthalatefree, GMO-free and sulfate-free. Available in Deepest Black, Black and Black Cherry. $7.98, Walmart and | february/march 2015


Supporting Healthy

Pregnancies, Births and Babies BY REBECCA VITKUS

Along with all of the changes that affect women’s bodies during pregnancy, expectant mommies also have to face the anxiety that comes with childbirth: Will my baby be healthy? Am I doing all I can to ensure my baby’s safety? Is there something that can guide me through this process? March of Dimes research and investigation is often praised for its success in helping prevent premature births and working to ensure each baby’s safety as it enters the world. However, after receiving information from Jamie Bellamy-Bartholomew, the March of Dimes’ North Central Florida Executive Director, and Donna Poyner, the March of Dimes’ Director of Program Services in the North Region, it is clear that the program is beneficial for any pregnant woman, regardless of health risks.

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interacts with families on a daily basis. The March of Dimes provides educational sessions on various important topics, while the families are treated to a free pizza lunch each week. Arts and crafts, with all materials

provided, are available to entertain families as they wait for news about their precious new baby. Families are incredibly grateful for this loving gesture from the March of Dimes. “NICU Family Support removed the Plexiglas® between my baby and me,” said one thankful mother. With a renewed determination to aim higher and achieve more, the March of Dimes continues to make groundbreaking discoveries that assist pregnant women and newborns of all health conditions. ✽ The March of Dimes has an incredible website that serves as a free resource for expectant mothers hoping to find answers to the questions they have. Check it out at! The Alachua County March for Babies is March 21st, 2015. Register at

© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved.

An important study conducted by the March of Dimes proved that taking folic acid before and during pregnancy helps to prevent birth defects. Other past research has funded many tests that all babies receive when they are born, whether they are born prematurely or not. These tests include the Apgar score, the PKU test and expanded testing for many different birth defects through the neonatal heel prick. All of these important findings show that even if a baby isn’t born prematurely, every baby born is a March of Dimes baby.

The NICU Family Support program at UF Health Shands Hospital provides information to around 800 families each year, giving comfort to those overwhelmed by having a newborn in the neonatal intensive care unit. In addition to the many informative print materials, these families are also invited to contact Judy Angley, the NICU Family Support Specialist housed at Shands who | february/march 2015




The Big Weight Loss Challenge #5 has begun!


Emotions have transitioned from angst and anxiety to anticipation and excitement. No matter what, these ladies have the support of Giggle Magazine, Sweat Life Fitness, family, friends and their community. Best of luck and always live the sweat life! ✽

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lifeprints P H O T O G R A P H Y

If you would like to become a sponsor, please contact Nicole at

Dan, Owner of

5 Tips from

Sweat Life Fitness

1 Shop the perimeters. 2 Stick to a list. 3 Read labels. Five or fewer ingredients on the label is the goal.

4 Eat things as close to their natural source as possible.


Don’t think about what you can’t have, but about all the good stuff you CAN have.

© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved.

Six determined women will spend 14 weeks overcoming obstacles and discovering their inner warrior. To get pumped up and motivated, a meeting was hosted for the ladies and their husbands. With family support being one of the most crucial factors of success when striving for challenging goals, it was only right to forewarn the husbands of what was to come — more Brussels sprouts, less pizza, MIA wives and picky children — as well as address any worries coming into the challenge. Next was the Publix tour, where the ladies learned how to shop healthy and decipher confusing labels.

Gainesville Dermatology Aesthetic Center | february/march 2015


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Ask Amy... Q: A:

What is a home inspection and why do I need one to purchase a house?

A Home Inspection is an objective visual examination of the physical structure and systems of a house, from the roof to the foundation. It is kind of like getting a general physical from your doctor…but for the home you are interested in purchasing. Getting a home inspection, although not typically required by your lender, is essential for making sure the property you are buying doesn’t have any hidden problems that you can’t see with your naked eye. Your REALTOR© can help you choose an inspector to use, and how to read the report you are given after the inspection. Still not sure where to start? Ask your REALTOR©. Don’t have a REALTOR©? Call me! Amy Hogue is a REALTOR® with Coldwell Banker M.M. Parrish Realtors, specializing in residential sales and first time homebuyers. She lives in Southwest Gainesville with her husband and two children. Do you have a question for Amy? Or looking for a more indepth answer to the question? Visit

AMY HOGUE, REALTOR® | (352) 317-5835 | february/march 2015


happy home

ORGANIZED CHAOS boxes corral and disguise desk supplies. Put up decorative shelving for photos and memorabilia. Colorful posters add charm as well as inspiration. These changes should get you all worked up!

len... Dear He

Q, My laundry room is overflowing with dirty clothes hampers, stacks of clothes needing stain removal, mending or dry cleaning, and a pile of single socks with no mates. Where do I start? A. Overflowing hampers are easier to deal with than an overflowing washing machine, so take heart — and take a field trip. Once you fall behind with the laundry, a blitz is the most effective way to catch up. Pile all the dirty laundry, detergent and a book into the car. Get rolls of quarters at the bank and drive to the laundromat. If you can, indulge in drop-off service. Use the web to find stain removal information. What doesn’t come clean in the wash will need to be disposed of or the remaining stains cleverly concealed. Think appliques here, especially for children’s clothing.

Queries from the Curious BY helen kornblum

Q. How can I organize my home office so that it is functional yet remains a pretty space?

Explore ideas in magazines and on the web for making your space more appealing. Whether you’re repainting or redecorating, choose a color palette. Consider a new area rug to bring color and texture to the space. If the space is too dark, add a mirror and new lighting. Invest in a comfortable task chair. If you are short on storage space but long on square footage, add built-ins or freestanding furniture to serve your needs. Put shelves in a clothes closet to store necessary, but not necessarily attractive, supplies or archival files. Colorful photo

Where do socks go in the dryer? Dig out any singletons lurking in dresser drawers. Take all the orphans to your dining table or large counter. Look for matches in this colorful family reunion. (5- to 9-year-olds would love to help with this game!) Pair up the matches, reserve the white terry socks for messy housecleaning jobs and toss the rest, unless you know someone about to start a sock puppet project. Now buy zippered lingerie bags, label and give one or more to each family member as their separate sock hamper. You will soon have the missing sock problem all zipped up.✽

 Helen Kornblum is a life coach and organizer. Find her at Her specialty is coaching teens and young adults who have ADHD or ADD.

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© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved.

A. Form follows function, so make sure your home office has the necessary tools to support productivity. Look for items that you tend to borrow from another room or a family member and buy your own. Assess your work style — do you pile or file? Do you need more filing space, a bookcase or an extra table? How comfortable are you with clutter? Does

household stuff usurp space needed for your work? Recycle outdated and unused electronics, along with cables you can no longer identify. Would a bulletin board help you keep an eye on deadline-based material? Deal with these hard questions, and the pretty part becomes easier.

If you are handy enough to do the mending, schedule a time in your planner to do it. If the repairs are beyond your skill, outsource the job. Consider if the item is worth the cost of repair. Use the same guideline for the dry cleaning. Put it in a special tote, put the tote in your car and add this task to your next errand outing. | february/march 2015


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happy home



M A K E I T. F I X I T. C L E A N I T.

Vintage Teacup Crafts


Reuse and repurpose with beautiful vintage teacups. Whether passed down from a favorite aunt or picked up at a local garage sale, these precious pieces can have numerous uses in your home.


1. Elegant Candle Holder Place a sweet-scented candle in a teacup for a unique hostess gift, or to add a feminine touch to your home decor. 2. Charming Jewelry Organizer Glue the teacup to a saucer and use the multi-level piece for earrings, bracelets, charms and rings. A sweet addition to your vanity! 3. Pretty Planter Start an herb garden or grow your own succulents to bring a bit of green inside this spring. | february/march 2015


happy home


Wine is an integral part of the Passover Seder dinner. Wine is considered special and, during this dinner, is used to celebrate when the Jews were freed from slavery. Matzah is also on the table. It is unleavened bread similar to a large, flat cracker. Matzah symbolizes the “bread of poverty,” which the Jewish people ate as slaves.

T he Katzes'

Passover Table Giggle Magazine writer Lisa Katz invited us into her home to share how she observes Passover with her family. With beautiful decor and delicious food, this Passover is sure to provide lasting family memories. Planning on celebrating Passover in your home? The holiday begins on Friday night, April 3, and continues until sundown on Saturday, April 11. Happy Passover! Photos by Lifeprints Photography

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The word “haggadah” means “the telling” in Hebrew. This book contains the instructions for the Seder and the Passover story.

Seder plate: The word “Seder” means “order” in Hebrew. We use the Seder plate to guide us through the steps or “order” of a Passover dinner. There are six traditional items on the Seder plate. Each represents a different part of the Passover story. There is a lamb shank bone, a roasted egg, bitter herbs (typically grated horseradish), charoset (a mixture of apples, nuts and cinnamon), parsley and a bitter vegetable (typically celery, scallion or lettuce).

Below, Lisa shares her recipe for a traditional holiday dish.

Veggie & Feta Latkes BY LISA KATZ

INGREDIENTS: 2 ½ cups grated zucchini 1 cup peeled and grated russet potatoes 1 cup shredded carrots ½ teaspoon salt 3 eggs, lightly beaten ¾ cup matzah meal (used instead of traditional flour) ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley ½ cup crumbled feta cheese ¼ cup vegetable oil Fresh ground black pepper DIRECTIONS: Place the grated zucchini, potatoes and carrots in a colander. Lay paper towels or a cheesecloth over the top of the mixture and squeeze out as much moisture/ liquid as possible. Sprinkle the salt over the veggies and let them drain for 15 minutes. Squeeze the veggies again in the paper towels. In a large mixing bowl, combine the veggie mixture, eggs, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well. Stir in the matzah meal, parsley and feta. Heat the oil in a large flying pan. Form the mixture into palm-size patties. Place the patties (also known as latkes or potato pancakes) into the hot oil and fry until golden brown on both sides. This usually takes 2-3 minutes per side. Add oil as needed so that the pan is never dry while frying. Drain the latkes on paper towels to remove any excess oil. This recipe makes 10-12 latkes. Traditionally they are served with either sour cream or applesauce. Some even use both condiments. Enjoy them however your family would most love them! | february/march 2015


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h o m esch o o l c o r n er

The Benefits of Park Day BY TARA GRIFFIN

Fresh air, great conversation, guaranteed friends (both new and old)... Homeschool Park Day is a staple in our own community, and parents across the country are saying the same. My search for “Homeschool Park Days” rendered over a million hits. On, 600 homeschool groups in cities from Gainesville to Seattle to Hong Kong are getting together for park days. I know why. Park Day is awesome for the whole family! Homeschool Park Days are simply planned times for homeschoolers and their families to get together at a local park for some recreational time and casual conversation. While my kids see their friends all week long on field trips, at sports practices and games, playdates, choir, lunches out and impromptu sleepovers, our Friday Park Day is still their best bet for an all-inclusive, fun, supportive, informational, social and educational experience. And I look forward to attending it as much as they do.

Here's what local Park Day attendees have to say: "It is a chance to hang out, play sports, meet new people and socialize." - Spencer, age 15

“Park Day is unique in that it brings together homeschoolers of all ages. It's really special for my younger kids to have a 13-year-old play 'pirates' with them or when the teens engage the littles with a game of 'Duck Duck Goose.' The younger kids get to see their peers are truly all ages, and the older kids get the opportunity to mentor and lead. Best of all, it's great to see all the kids having fun in a supportive, kind environment.” - Kate, mom of 2 | february/march 2015

“I've enjoyed watching my teenage son mature through Park Day. He's learned leadership from the older kids, and he has a chance to put it into action by playing with the younger ones. For my son, it's all about having fun and being active. Park Day is what first spurred his interest in physical activity and working out. It's something he looks forward to every week.” - Audrey, mom of 1 “I like the good playground, and hanging out with my friends and playing soccer with no referees.” - Torie, age 7

To find a Homeschool Park Day near you, try an Internet search to hook up with a local group (visit Gainesville Homeschool Cooperative on, or find me at and I'll help you start one. It's that fun, and that important! Happy Parking! - Tara

➜ Tara Griffin is a homeschool mother of two and the creative force behind


"Park Day is a haven for homeschoolers. It's where we gather to share conversation, food, ideas and fun. Oh, and the kids get to run around and play." - Megan, mom of 2

Photo provided by Tara Griffin.

“We often stay for the whole afternoon. The kids don't bring their phones or gaming devices, and they never want to leave. The moms talk, the kids play. The younger kids are on the playground. The older kids walk around, play guitar or huddle up chatting somewhere. Then all of a sudden they get together and organize a game of kickball or something. I'm so thankful for our group; for the kids and for me.” - Catherine, mom of 3

“I like meeting new families and homeschool veterans and everyone in between. There are families where one child is being homeschooled while another is going to public school and even families stopping through on their roadschooling adventures. The variety of conversations keeps it interesting. We stay all day when the weather's nice.” - Jamie, mom of 3 | february/march 2015


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i n t he classr o o m

Florida Standards Assessment 101

the new statewide assessments. The implementation of these will take place for grades K-12 during this 2014-2015 school year. Clarke says that one of the biggest changes to the assessments is that they will be computer based for grades 5-11. Schools are having students utilize the computer labs to practice using a mouse and typing, something they may not have done a lot of in the past. Another big change is that they will not be all multiplechoice questions with one right answer. There will be a variety of testing methods used: short responses, graphs and those where students must select several correct responses. Clarke recommends parents visit the Florida Standards Assessments website to look at sample questions and allow students to as well. She feels this will help calm anxiety over what to expect from the new format. As with any testing, it is important not to place too much pressure on the students. The students are learning the material all school year from their teachers’ instruction, she explains, so they are well prepared. ✽


Common Core? Florida Standards? End of Course exams? FCAT 2.0? Is your head spinning yet? With the adoption of the Florida Standards Assessments this year and the eventual phase out of the FCAT, parents and students alike are left wondering what is fact and what is fiction. Common Core has gotten a bad reputation in a lot of ways. Online posts showing children’s homework with the “new math” is confusing at best. So, what’s the deal? Does Florida have Common Core?

The most important thing for parents to remember is “not to panic,” says Karen

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Schools are presenting the information to parents in various ways, but are working hard to make sure that students and parents are aware of the changes and what to expect. In the fall, Talbot Elementary School held two separate informational parent meetings, broken up into upper and lower elementary grade levels. They presented the new testing expectations, provided sample test questions and answered questions from parents. Most who attended found the meetings informative and helpful. Check with your child’s school for planned meetings, information sessions or printed materials. The Florida Department of Education has contracted with AIR (American Institutes for Research) to develop and administer

Grade Level Testing Requirements: Grades 3-11 take English Language Arts, plus Writing in grades 4-11. Grades 3-8 take Mathematics. EOC (End of Course) exams are required for: • Algebra 1 • Geometry • Algebra 2

For more information or to look at sample test questions, visit or visit for more information about state requirements.

© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved.

The answer is yes ... and no. The Florida Department of Education made some modifications to what is known as Common Core and named it Florida Standards. The methods are different from what we as parents may have been taught in school and that does present challenges when trying to assist with homework or prepare your child for a test.

Clarke, the Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Instructional Services for the Alachua County Public Schools. Alachua County has been preparing the schools and teachers for these changes and they are ready, she says. | february/march 2015



fa m ily lear n i n g

Making Memories: Documenting Your Spring Break BY REBECCA VITKUS

Wouldn’t you like your children to be able to remember this special spring break years from now? Take the time to document your precious family memories by creating a priceless memento filled with personal accounts, photographs and keepsakes.

Kid Photography

At the beginning of the vacation, give each child a disposable or digital camera. (Make sure it’s shockproof, waterproof, freezeproof — accident-proof!) If you use a disposable camera, remind your kiddos to choose their photographic moments carefully, as these cameras have a photo limit. When the pictures are developed, you will be amazed as you get to witness what the world looks like from the eyes of your child. Give the developed pictures to your children to create scrapbooks of their own, complete with colorful stickers, silly sketches and beautiful memories.


Even the smallest vacationers can be creative and get in on the artistic action! Direct your children to draw a scene that describes their favorite memory from each day, whether that includes building a sandcastle along the sea, meeting Mickey for the first time or just baking cookies in the kitchen with Mommy. After the break is over, display the artwork in a folder or notebook as a vacation keepsake. These small art projects will be fun for the kids to revisit when they are older. The more abstract, the better — just don’t forget to take notes on what the pictures are intended to be!

Photo Journaling

Use a website like Shutterfly or Snapfish to bring all of your pictures together without the mess of glitter and glue. Teach your children computer skills as they sit alongside you, choosing the perfect background and thinking of creative titles and captions for each page. The product is relatively inexpensive, and your copy of your treasured times together is the perfect centerpiece for the living room table.


For older kids, making a video documentary of your week of excitement is a great spring break project. Whether you have professional equipment or just a smartphone or two, have the kids record fun memories throughout the week. Include quick interviews with each family member to scatter throughout the video. “What was your favorite part of vacation? Which moment made you laugh the hardest?” Work together to edit the project into a short highlight reel, and pick a fun song for your vacation documentary. It’s the perfect way to share your memories with your Facebook friends! ✽

it again. Collect tokens from each of the places you visit — a to-go menu from a quaint diner, a theme park map or a few small seashells. Then print your favorite pictures from your spring break adventures rather than just uploading them to the computer. Bring the kids to a craft store to choose decorative paper, stickers and books to hold your treasured memories. It will be a several-day project, but the memories held in your photographs and the memories your family makes while designing the scrapbook are worth the effort.

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© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved.

Scrapbooking: Old-fashioned scrapbooking seems to be a lost art, but it may be time to find | february/march 2015


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a C oun ty

m Summer Ca

p D

ct ire



Summer camp registration will be here before you know it, and we want to make sure you're as prepared as possible. Here's your guide to all of the summer camp fun Alachua County has to offer. PHOTO BY VERVE STUDIO | february/march 2015


Sports 300 Club

Boys and Girls Club

City of Gainesville


DB Racquet Club

Equestrian Gator Softball Camp

Gator Swim Camp


MEGA Sports and Arts Camp

Fencing Adventure Camp summercamp

Florida Track Club Junior Champs

Gainesville Area Rowing Summer Rowing Camp

Gainesville Junior Golf Tour

Gainesville Youth Soccer/ British Soccer Camp

Gatorball Baseball Camp

Madonna's Equestrian Academy

Haile Equestrian

Gator Tennis Camp

Dreamstone Horse Farm

Oak Hall Sports Camps

Summer Golf Camps at Meadowbrook Golf Club

Sun Country Sports Center UF Junior Cheerleaders

Winshape at Westside Baptist YMCA

Gator Football Camp


School & Religious Abiding Savior Summer Camp

A Child's Academy

B'nai Israel Community Day School Summer Camp

Brentwood School

Camp McConnell

Camp Kulaqua

Girl Scout Camp

Camp Good News

Gainesville Country Day School | february/march 2015

Montgomery Presbyterian Center Camp

Morning Meadow Summer Camp

Queen of Peace Academy

Sonshine Day Summer Camp

Greenhouse Church

St. Michael's Day School summercamp

Heart Pine School

St. Patrick Interparish Catholic School

Jordan Glen School

Trinity United Methodist Church

Kiddie Academy of Gainesville Lake Swan Camp

76 Oak Hall School

Camp Crystal Lake

Millhopper Montessori School Camp

Winshape Camp

Martial Arts Chikarakogeki Karate and Judo Kai


PRO Martial Arts Fencing Adventure Camp

Star Martial Arts Global Mixed Martial Arts Academy

Mixed Activities

Medical Camp Boggy Creek

Hands to Love Camp

Alachua County Public Schools Extended Day Enrichment Program

Florida Diabetes Camp

Blue Wave After School

Boys and Girls Club

Outdoor & Recreation

Camp Good News


City of Gainesville

Boy Scouts

Lake Swan Camp

Camp Good News

O2B Kids! Summertime Fun at Trinity United Methodist


Sun Country Sports Center

Girls Place

YMCA | february/march 2015


The Arts Academy of Music and Art/ Gainesville Guitar Academy

French Youth Summer Camp

MEGA Sports and Arts Camp

Gainesville Association for the Creative Arts

Musical Me Theater

Boys and Girls Club

P.K. Yonge Fine Arts Summer Camp

Gainesville's Girls Rock and Roll Camp

Camp Broadway

Pop Up Theater Camp (We the People Theater Arts Initiative)

Gainesville Youth Chorus' Sing All Summer Workshop

Corks & Colors

Do Art

Harn Museum

Expressions Academy


Dance & Gymnastics Balance 180 Gymnastics Summer Camp Yopp! Creative Kids Camp

Science Sun Country Sports Center

Cade Museum

Camp Invention

Cameron's Dancenter


IndepenDance Studio

UF Gatorette Baton Camp

Sun Country Sports Center

Florida Museum of Natural History

Earth Academy Day Camp, City of Gainesville

Joni Messler Studio of Dance Camp

The Rock School for Dance Education

UF Junior Dazzlers Clinic

Gator Swim Camp

Junior Lifeguard Camp, City of Gainesville


Swimming Lessons, City of Gainesville

Makos Aquatics

Synchro Camp

Sun Country Sports Center

Water Aerobics, City of Gainesville

FUNctional Mathematics

College for Kids at Santa Fe College

Super Summer


Swimming | february/march 2015 | february/march 2015


Putting the future at their fingertips (one little swipe at a time).

Technology makes a difference! Enroll now for learning that balances new technologies with good old creative play. Playing and learning through technology is crucial to healthy childhood development. Every time little fingers touch the screen, growing brains power up with fun, curiosity, teamwork, problem-solving — and even exercise. So children are empowered with all the skills they need to build brighter futures.

That’s what Life Essentials® is all about.

• Latest technologies, from tablets to interactive white boards, are used to enhance learning.

• Technology is woven into the curriculum to ensure natural learning and computer literacy skills.


• Screen time is limited per Let's Move standards.


• Academy Link™ allows teachers to send real-time updates on a childʼs activities, meals and more.


• Early technology education helps prepare children for lifetime success.


• Music & More engages families through downloadable songs, stories and learning activities.

Schedule a tour and enroll now. Kiddie Academy® of Gainesville 352.264.7724 6476 Southwest 75th Street • Gainesville, FL 32608 Open Monday - Friday 6:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m. VISIT US AT FACEBOOK.COM/KIDDIEACADEMY


80 | february/march 2015

FREE Registration! Offer expires 3/2/15. Contact academy for details.

conception2college  expecting Bumps, Bagels ... and Babies!

 infant | 0-1 Skin-to-Skin Care and Babywearing: Benefits of Bonding

 toddler | 2-3 Toddler Independence: The Dos and Don'ts of This New Journey

 early years | 4-5 Brushing Up on Healthy Habits

 kids | 6-7 Reading Struggles: Therapy or Just More Practice?

 tweens | 8-12 Safety in a Tween's Digital World

 teens | 13-18

Photo by Terri Smith Photo.

Prom + Proposal = Promposal! | february/march 2015




pre g n a n cy

Bumps, Bagels ... and Babies! BY DANA KAMP

These mommies were part of Giggle Magazine’s first Bumps & Bagels series, a monthly meet-up to discuss all things pregnancy, birth and babies! Now their sweet bundles of joy have arrived and they graciously agreed to share their beautiful, amazing and very real birth stories with us!

Becky Maris, mom of 1 Scarlett Elaine Maris Born November 11th, 2014, at 8:26 a.m. 7 pounds, 6 ounces; 19 ½ inches Planning on having a natural childbirth, I went to the childbirth classes and read a lot to prepare. I expected it to go pretty close to what we were taught. I expected contractions to start gradually and become more and more regular. Also, I wasn’t worried about my water breaking because I read that it rarely breaks before getting to the hospital. 

After an hour of the worst back labor in the world, I ended up with an epidural and delivered her eight hours later. Scarlett was posterior, or “sunny side up,” and that was why the pain had been so excruciating. No matter what I had expected, the surprising reality was all worth it when I held her in my arms that first time.

82 | february/march 2015

Walker Payne Robinson Born October 8, 2014, at 12:24 p.m. 9 pounds; 21 inches Scheduling a cesarean section never crosses a girl's mind when she dreams of having children of her own. The thoughts of rushing to the hospital, the dramatic water breaking, the breathing exercises, the "Get out of jail free card" to cuss at your husband, that last push and hearing your baby’s first cries … that's what I always envisioned for my story of coming into "mommyhood." The talks with my doctor began early in pregnancy when there was fear that our baby would be big. At our 35-week appointment, I knew it was time to come to terms with scheduling our son's birthday. Each day that passed, the anticipation to meet him grew, and the less I cared how he came into the world. My doctor and I knew this was the safest route for both the baby and me, and with support, we picked Walker's birthday. We had a taste of that craziness we’d envisioned when I came down with the stomach bug just a few days before his birth, started having strong contractions and had to receive 3 liters of fluids for dehydration at the hospital, before being sent home when the contractions ceased. But, then his real birth day arrived, and I realized that just because he arrived via surgery, it doesn't mean I didn't give birth. It doesn't mean that I am not a hero. I look back now and the thought of regret never crosses my mind. My baby is healthy, my recovery was amazingly quick and easy, and his birth story is my favorite. continued on pg. 85

Photos courtesy of Becky, Kourtney, Erica and Beth.

However, the day I went into labor I had no noticeable contractions. Then that night, while in bed, I felt a painful “pop” and then a gush of fluid. My water had broken! One minute later contractions hit me like a freight train. I could barely breathe or walk. I started timing them and they were coming every three minutes and lasting one minute each. Within 10 minutes they became two minutes apart! That scared us, so we went to the hospital. 

Kourtney Robinson, mom of 1 | february/march 2015


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continued from pg. 82

Erica Davis-Jackson, mom of 2

Beth Glaser, mom of 2

Lillian Grace Jackson Born October 31, 2014, at 2:27 p.m. 8 pounds, 1 ounce; 20 inches

Amelia Mason Glaser Born November 20, 2014, at 1:50 p.m. 7 pounds, 14 ounces; 21 inches

My story actually starts a few weeks before the birth of Lillian Grace. During my 34-week appointment, my blood pressure was found to be extremely high. I was so bummed because I was working out 4-5 times a week, eating healthy and chasing after a toddler. How could this happen? I was hoping to avoid another induction because my last one led to a cesarean section. However, due to the fact I had suffered preeclampsia during my last pregnancy, my doctors put me on modified bed rest and nixed the idea of a VBAC.

Amelia Mason graced us with her presence on Thursday, November 20, 2014, after 32 hours of labor. It all started Wednesday morning around 6 a.m. I got up for work and noticed I was having some mild contractions about 10 minutes apart. I ignored them most of the day, thinking there was no way I was in labor. Around 6 p.m. the contractions started getting stronger, but they were still 10 minutes apart. Finally around midnight I knew it was the real deal. I woke my husband up and called my sister and my doula.

Fast forward to 36 weeks: The doctors wanted Lillian here ASAP! My health just wasn't holding up and our baby was running out of room. I became a ball of emotions! So much was happening and all I wanted was a healthy baby. After much thought and tears, my C-section was scheduled for October 31. Although I didn't get the birth I planned, my team of doctors was amazing! They really helped me to understand the situation and make the best decision for our health. Lillian was happily welcomed and is easygoing and an amazing sleeper so far! We are so happy she's here safe and sound!

I wanted to labor at home as long as possible, so I did not go to the hospital until 8 a.m., Thursday morning. When we got there, I was 7 centimeters dilated. It took me another four hours to get to 8 centimeters. It was very frustrating and I was completely exhausted. With the help of my doula and a couple Spinning Babies techniques, I was able to go from 8 to 9 ½ centimeters in the next hour. My doctor came in and broke my water and things started to pick up. I had the urge to push so I got on my hands and knees and in the next 20 minutes Amelia was born. My all-natural delivery was the most painful and empowering experience of my life. I couldn't have done it without the help of my doula and my family.

Are you an expecting mama? Come visit us for Giggle Magazine's very own Bumps & Bagels®, a free event where expecting mommies can snack and chat about all things pregnancy! Visit our website at for dates and times. | february/march 2015




a g es 0 - 1

Skin-to-Skin Care and Babywearing: Benefits Beyond Bonding by SELENA GARRISON

There is nothing quite like cuddling up with a brand new baby. Gazing at her tiny features, listening to her quiet breathing and feeling the warmth of her soft skin is just magical. This kind of contact is great for Mom and Dad, and even better for the baby.

[ Wearing your baby promotes her physical development by keeping

Skin-to-Skin Care

[ Babies worn in slings tend to cry less. Extensive crying can be

Skin-to-skin care (also known as kangaroo care) is important for babies right after birth, in those first few days and even once they are home. Snuggling against Mommy’s skin right after birth has been shown to have many positive effects on both the mom and baby.

baby in tune with your breathing rhythm, heartbeat and movements. This helps to develop your baby’s own physical responses. exhausting for both parents and the baby, and excessive crying can even cause damage to baby’s brain by continually flooding it with stress hormones.

[ Babywearing can be a bonding tool for the mom, dad,

[ Physiological benefits include stabilizing respiration and

grandparents and other caregivers.

oxygenation, increasing glucose levels, warming the infant, reducing stress hormones, regulating blood pressure and decreasing crying.

[ Babywearing is convenient! Your hands and arms are free, you

[ Maternal attachment is promoted through increasing hormones (such as Oxytocin), which are known to influence intimacy.

[ Protection is provided from the negative effects of maternal-infant separation.

[ Optimal brain development is supported. [ Initiation of the first breastfeeding is promoted, resulting in

do not have to worry about navigating with a stroller and baby is comfortable! Tiffany Swaynos, mother of one, shared that babywearing made the first year with her son so much easier. “He needs to be rocked to sleep,” Swaynos said, “so carriers have saved both my and my husband’s arms on multiple occasions!” She also said that their son will sleep anywhere in the carrier they wear, from football games to Universal Studios.

increased occurrence. Charyl Hermann, mother of four, found out at the birth of her youngest daughter that baby Joy had Down syndrome.


Close contact with Mom (and Dad!) continues to be important as baby grows, but carrying your sweet bundle around all of the time can be exhausting and nearly impossible. Babywearing, which is using a sling or other style of carrier to wear your baby on your chest or back, is a great way to keep baby close and still keep up with everything that needs to be done. There are actually many benefits to babywearing!

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For more detailed information about skin-to-skin care and babywearing, check out these sites: • health-info/ages-stages/baby/hic-Kangaroo-Care • • •

© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved.

Though she was in shock and quite frightened of the unknown elements of Joy’s situation, she explained, “I knew I needed to provide skin-to-skin contact with her so that I could intentionally bond with her. Her temperature also tended to run on the low side, so this helped to regulate her body temperature. It was a benefit to us in many ways.”

“It doesn’t hurt to have both hands available when shopping or doing chores, either!” ✽ | february/march 2015


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a g es 2 - 3

Toddler Independence: The Dos and Don’ts of This New Journey by ale russian

DO encourage her to help put on her own clothes. An important step in establishing independence is learning how to dress herself. “Pants and underpants are easier to put on than shirts,” Strode says. “Letting them pull them up gives them a little freedom in their daily schedules.” Using the zipper on her jacket is another easy task she can start mastering. Pulling on slip-on shoes or sandals, choosing a hat or accessory for her outfit, and finding two matching socks to wear are all responsibilities a toddler is capable of having.

DON’T expect her to master the potty immediately.

At this age, toddlers aren’t developmentally ready to be fully potty trained. However, they should be getting accustomed to the idea of using the potty and how it works. Your toddler should be able to get up on the potty and back down on her own, or know where her own small portable potty is for when she is ready to go. At this age, she may still need encouragement, support and assistance with pottying.

DO give her as many chances to make decisions on her own as is appropriate. The balance between not wanting your child to grow up and being ready for her to gain independence is always tricky. Letting go and allowing your toddler to start doing things by herself is tough on the heart. But this is the perfect age to start teaching independence. “Since they can’t make big decisions like when to leave the house, let them make smaller decisions, like picking the shoes they want to wear,” says Brandi Strode, a preschool teacher at Kid Works Preschool.

© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved.

Giving a child several opportunities to make decisions, however small or simple, and carry out those decisions builds confidence when it comes to other independent activities. Your toddler is much more likely to cooperate with your requests when she feels she has some say in what is going on around her. "Toddlers are not ready to have full independence in all everyday decisions, but they can start by choosing between two shirts or two pants. Learning how to do this and self-help, putting their clothes on and taking them off, gives them the skills to prepare them for the next step — potty training," shares Kristin Birdsey, co-owner of Education Station and Preschool. You may not know which everyday tasks your toddler can start doing on her own, and which still need to be left for a grown-up to do. Here are some helpful tips to keep in mind.

Although it won’t apply in every situation, letting your child get to the right decision on her own is important. It may take a little while to decide something, such as the right kind of clothing to wear on a cold day or which puzzle piece should fit next, but letting her get to the decision with as little input as possible is essential in learning independent thought. When you do help, make sure you use positive words and subtly point her in the right direction.

DON’T let her get discouraged.

Simple decisions or tasks can still seem too difficult to a little one. If she isn’t able to do something she is desperately trying to do, make sure to praise her efforts. “Even if she doesn’t succeed, make sure to tell her she did a good job and you’re proud of how hard she tried,” Strode says. Praising the efforts to become more independent will encourage her to continue the behavior. Independence is all about the confidence she has in herself, and nothing is more helpful in building that than positive encouragement.

DO allow her to share her new skills with others.

The next time your toddler has a friend over, let her show her friend how she feeds the cat, uses a new toy or how she puts her plate in the sink when she is finished eating. Using her skills with peers builds confidence and helps her gain profiency in these new-to-her skills. ✽ | february/march 2015



early years

a g es 4 - 5

Brushing Up on Healthy Habits by SAVANNA KEARNEY

Although February may be a month devoted to heart-shaped candies and boxes of chocolates, it’s important for another reason: It is National Children’s Dental Health Month. Sponsored by the American Dental Association, this month is dedicated to raising awareness about the importance of children’s oral health.

The First Dentist Appointment

According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, children should attend their first dental appointment when their first tooth comes in. After your child’s first checkup, regular visits to the dentist are recommended every six months. Routine appointments are important in preventing cavities and tooth decay, which affect more than a quarter of U.S. kids aged 2-5. Tooth decay can be more detrimental for children than adults, since the enamel on children’s teeth is half as thin as adult enamel. A child’s first visit with a dentist can be a scary experience, but parents can do a great deal to comfort their little one. You should start by directly explaining to your child what he can expect during the visit, but avoid unnecessary words such as “needle” or “drill” that could incite fear. Although it’s okay to stay with your child

Fun Tips for a Beautiful Smile

• Many kids don’t like the strong, minty taste of toothpaste; try a fruit- or bubblegum-flavored paste instead. • Buy products associated with your child’s favorite cartoon character to encourage healthy habits with a familiar, friendly tone.

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Home Teeth Care

Remember to maintain healthy habits at home, too. Since your little one cannot brush his teeth as effectively as you can, the AAPD recommends that parents assist in their child’s teethbrushing habits from ages 3-6. This is also the time when you should increase the amount of toothpaste used to about the size of a pea. Before that, doctors advise using a tiny bit of fluoride toothpaste as soon as baby teeth start to break through. Flossing is another important habit to start with your child. Daily flossing should become a part of your child’s routine as soon as his teeth begin to fit closely together; this usually happens between the ages of 2 and 6. It’s OK if your little one can’t floss without help from you; children can usually do this independently by the time they turn 10.

Teeth Protection

If you’re wondering when to start thinking about sealants for children’s teeth, consult your pediatric dentist. Some doctors recommend putting sealants on baby teeth, especially if the teeth have grooves that could hold cavities. However, most kids should get sealants as soon as their permanent molars come in, which usually happens between the ages of 5 and 7. After that, your child’s sealants should be checked regularly to ensure they haven’t been chipped or worn away. ✽

© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved.

• To ensure that your child brushes for a full two minutes, have him use a toothbrush that plays music until it’s time to rinse or set a timer that will ring when brushing time is up.

during his first few visits, you want to make sure he is comfortable with the staff that will be taking care of him. Finally, reward your child for good behavior during the visit by doing something extra special when it is over. | february/march 2015




a g es 6 - 7

Reading Struggles: Therapy or Just More Practice? BY ALE RUSSIAN

There are several activities parents can do with their child if they feel the child is falling behind but it isn’t a greater problem. Schiavoni suggests the following to get your child in tune to reading and to develop phonological awareness:

Phonological awareness is the key phrase to consider when determining whether your child has a reading disability or not. Lisa Schiavoni, a school psychologist and owner of Milestones in the Making, says, “Before learning to read, children have to understand sounds and that words are made of sounds.”

➜ Reading

The most important thing a parent can do to ensure their child’s reading success is to read to him as much as possible. This gets the child started on making the connection between words, letters and sounds.

Phonological awareness is being able to place letters with the sounds they make, a necessary part of reading. This is where a disability can be discovered. If your child has trouble remembering the letters of the alphabet, but seems to be able to pick up what sounds they make pretty easily, they probably just need a little more help from you, a tutor or a teacher. However, if you see your child is delayed in speaking and they are not able to truly grasp the concept of what sounds specific symbols make, there may be a greater problem.

➜ Rhyming

Reading books that are heavy in rhyming (like Dr. Seuss books) develops phonological awareness when reading. Children can begin making the connection between a symbol and the sound it makes and how it relates to other symbols and sounds.

➜ Car games

“If by age 6 kids are not picking up the sounds of the alphabet and by 7 are not at grade level reading, there might be a disability such as dyslexia or ADHD,” Schiavoni says. The best thing to do in this case is to go to your child’s pediatrician. They can evaluate the problem and, if necessary, put you in contact with a speech language pathologist who can further determine your child’s need.

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A possible cause of this might be that “kids are not being read, sung or spoken to enough,” Schiavoni explains. Although this won’t necessarily lead to a reading disorder or disability, it may cause a delay in the development of phonological awareness.

➜ Singing

Just like rhyming and reading, singing goes a long way in helping children blend the sounds into words. Singing along or playing songs that emphasize letters and the sounds they make can help the child catalog them into long-term memory. ✽

© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved.

Word games that are easily played in the car to playfully (and educationally) pass the time can really help combat reading disabilities. Rhyming games that emphasize the beginning and ending of sounds teach the child the properties of recognizing full words. Taking a sentence or a word your child says often and separating the words by clapping out the syllables helps him start blending sounds into actual words. | february/march 2015




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Safety in a Tween’s Digital World by KELLY GOEDE

Back when I was a tween, I was basically a social ninja. I could play a video game (all right, Atari), eat a meal and have a crush on a boy, and no one was the wiser, unless I chose to somehow broadcast the highlights of those activities to my friends at school or on a phone call to Grandma. The Internet had not been invented yet, and my camera used film. Fast forward one generation, and now my children have ridden the technological wave, washing over me in the process and leaving me on the shore wondering what just happened. The speed of a tween’s interactions is now almost instantaneous. As a parent to a tween who has computer access (and one day cell phone access), I simply cannot wait for something horrific to happen to my child online before I educate myself on what is appropriate and safe for her to use. offers some of the most important tips for tweens to stay cyber-safe. A few suggestions are not giving out personal information without parents’ permission, telling parents right away if something makes them uncomfortable and talking to parents about posting pictures. The site offers several additional tips that would be helpful for parents and tweens to review together, preferably before online activity begins, and in ensuing discussions as the child grows older and more tech savvy. As much as we feel we can trust our children, without the proper safeguards installed on all devices, tweens may find inappropriate material when searching for something benign. Many parental control apps exist to assist parents in making sure adult content stays away from your tween’s screen. A pinch of proactivity will prevent a pound of guilt and regret if your child virtually winds up somewhere inappropriate, so do your homework to investigate and install parental controls. And then exercise your own parental control and get involved in what your child is doing online.

As parents, we cannot afford to be cyber-ostriches, sticking our heads in the sand and hoping for the best. ✽

Giggle Tip! Give your tween an email address on Parents can monitor emails and set blocks, safety rules and time restrictions, while still allowing your child to have his own personal email address.

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❉ Visit for reliable parental control apps to install on your devices. ❉ The minimum age for Facebook, Snapchat and Instagram is 13 years old. Stick to it. And once your child is on those sites, “friend” him. ❉ For tween-friendly sites, visit your child’s school’s homepage. Most offer links to school-approved sites. ❉ Visit for a list of 30 fun and safe kids’ websites. ❉ Set limits for time spent doing anything electronic (amount of time and time of day). ❉ Keep the computer in a high traffic room so you can easily keep tabs on what your child is up to while online.

© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved.

According to Deputy PJ Mauldin, School Resource Officer at Wiles Elementary, “If you’re going to allow your kids to do something online, you need to be involved as well. Parents let kids play video games but may not realize that child predators use online gaming to contact children. One in four children who use online gaming will be contacted at some point by some type of predator or someone with criminal intent.”

Mom-to-Mom Tips to Keep Your Tween Safe Online | february/march 2015


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Prom + Proposal = Promposal! by BOBBI BLOOM

A “promposal” is a new term you will be hearing more as your children make their way through the teen years. It is the way someone asks another person to go to the prom. It’s no longer a simple question and answer. In fact, it has become something that takes a great deal of planning to coordinate and pull off. This trend is gaining popularity across the country, in public schools and private academies, in big cities and small towns. While some promposals can be simple and sweet, others can be completely over-thetop. In fact, many often look similar to actual wedding proposals. Depending on the personality of the person being asked, the asker can plan the perfect promposal to suit the potential date.

Simply Sweet Promposal Ideas: 1. Hold up a huge bouquet of balloons and have a sign that reads, “Will you fly up to prom with me?”

2. Give a box of chocolate-covered strawberries with writing on the box that says, “I would be BERRY happy if you went to prom with me!”

3. Write a poem on the outside of a

© 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved

large cup of pink-colored shaved ice. “Cotton candy is pink and snow is white. Will you be my date on prom night?”

4. Use fridge magnets to spell out

“Will you go to prom with me?” on her locker, car door or mailbox.

5. Decorate a locker (either the inside

or the outside) with streamers, photos, balloons, etc., and include a handwritten card asking the person to prom.

Extravagant Promposal Ideas: 1. Create a scavenger hunt that leads your potential date from place to place with rose petals. At the end of it, post a sign with “Please go to prom with me!” written on it.

2. Coordinate a flash mob and have one of the people hand a note to the person you are asking during the performance.

3. Buy a pretty piece of jewelry.

On the inside of the box write, “Prom?”

4. At nighttime, have the question,

“Will you light up my night and go to prom?” written in chalk on a dark driveway or sidewalk. Surround the words with candles.

5. Rent a plane with a banner flying from it, asking the person to be your prom date.

My teenage daughter was “promposed to” this year. A boy asked her to meet him near an outdoor water fountain. When she approached, he was holding a bag of water with a fish swimming in it. In the other hand he held a large poster with the words “Of all the fish in the sea, will you go to prom with me?” written on it. It was perfectly sweet and she agreed to go with him. While most promposals do not require a lot of money, other more grandiose ones are quite pricey. There is definitely a range of creativity within this new phenomenon. Most like to think this all stems from the desire to be romantic. However, some feel it is just a ploy for social media and peer attention. While it does seem like a great deal of work, as well as an abundant amount of pressure, this new rage does not seem to be disappearing anytime soon. Before they even get to the stress and excitement of going to the prom, now the promposal must first be checked off the list. ✽ | february/march 2015


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E x t ra , E x t ra

Jordan Thorp and The Smile Team by REBECCA VITKUS

As a passionate cheerleader, traveling public speaker and founder of The Smile Team, 15-year-old Jordan Thorp has accomplished much more than what’s expected of the average high school student. Her title as Miss Gainesville’s Outstanding Teen 2014 enables her to boldly engage audiences around the country and promote awareness of the need to support cleft palate repair organizations, an issue dear to her heart. When Thorp was 8 years old, her cousin Braiden was born with a cleft lip, but he was able to undergo surgery that would alter the direction of his future. The doctors corrected the birth defect, and when his smile was fixed, Thorp was amazed.

Photo courtesy of Jordan Thorp and The Smile Team.

“His smile became his winning feature,” Thorp said, “and I knew even as a little girl that I wanted to make this happen for other children.”

Jordan at Miami Children's Hospital, where she met with the Cleft team to donate money to their program and delivered Cleftline comfort bears to children who had just had surgery to repair their cleft lips.

the nation and one speech at her church. She raises money and spreads awareness for what she describes as a “very correctable condition.”

Thorp, along with her parents, discovered an organization called Smile Train, which provides a free surgery to a child in a Third World country with cleft lip and palate for each $250 donation. The Thorp family helped Smile Train for years, but in October 2012 they decided to take their involvement even deeper.

This summer, Thorp received an exciting partnership commitment that resulted from her speaking engagements.

Thorp founded The Smile Team to help children locally as well as globally. She has since partnered with local, state, national and international organizations, including Smile Train, Cleft Palate Foundation, Gator Smiles, Grins and Giggles Dentistry, Miami Children’s Hospital, All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg and the UF Craniofacial Center at Shands.

So what is in store for the future of The Smile Team?

This year, The Smile Team reached its “smilestone” goal of $25,000, translating to a donation of 100 cleft surgeries for children. Currently, Thorp’s fundraising has now raised just under $45,000 to fix 125 smiles, donate 125 comfort bears and provide other assistance like special bottles for newborns, speech therapy camp tuition and travel assistance for families in need. Thorp’s success as a pageant contestant, including being 4th RunnerUp at Miss Florida's Outstanding Teen Pageant last June, has helped her develop the poise and confidence needed when she advocates on behalf of The Smile Team. She speaks at about five different events each year, usually including four cheerleading competitions around

“The cheer competitions I speak at have agreed to adopt my charity this year and match what I raise at each event,” Thorp said.

“We are hoping to bring in $30,000 in this year alone to assist more children,” Thorp said. Thorp hopes to engage more churches and partner with every cleft team in the state, as well as with dentist offices, to help provide free dental care to children in need. She explains that cleft palate repair is a desperate need for children born with this condition, but it often remains untreated due to its cost. With such incredible accomplishments in a short amount of time, it is not surprising that Thorp was awarded the Teens in Action Community Service Award at the Miss Gainesville Outstanding Teen pageant. This pageant is an official preliminary competition for the Miss America Organization, the world’s largest provider of scholarships to young women. With Thorp’s drive, dedication and loving heart, she is surely on her way to making even more of a difference in the lives, and smiles, of many children. ✽

If you would like to partner with The Smile Team, visit and invite Thorp to speak at your event. Stay updated on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram by following @Jordan4Smiles. | february/march 2015


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Hoggetowne Medieval Fair 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Alachua County Fairgrounds

Five Points of Life Marathon & Half Marathon 7 a.m. Hull Road and SW 34th Street

An Evening of Worship with William McDowell 7 p.m. Curtis M. Phillips Center




Groundhog Day! FEBRUARY 6

Uptown Art Hop 6 – 9 p.m. Thornebrook Village uptownarthop.html FEBRUARY 6 - 7

Dudley Farm Plow Day 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Dudley Farm FEBRUARY 8

Love That Dress! benefiting PACE Center for Girls and Children's Home Society VIP Admission: 10 a.m. – Noon; General Admission: Noon – 7 p.m. Senior Recreation Center FEBRUARY 8

Jazz, Wine & Craft Beer Tasting for GHS Baseball 4 – 7:30 p.m. FEBRUARY 9

FLMNH Homeschool Day: A T. rex Named Sue 10 a.m. – Noon Florida Museum of Natural History FEBRUARY 14

Happy Valentine’s Day! FEBRUARY 14

Valentines for Veterans – Spirit of America IX 7:30 p.m. First United Methodist Church 770-536-2341 FEBRUARY 14

“A Midsummer Night’s Dream” 7:30 p.m. Curtis M. Phillips Center for Performing Arts

All that Jazz … and then some! 4 p.m. Holy Trinity Episcopal Church 352-372-4721

Puttin’ on the Ritz 7 – 11 p.m. Gainesville Country Club



Presidents Day!

FLMNH Science Café: Florida Archaeology 6:30 – 9 p.m. Florida Museum of Natural History


FLMNH Passport to Around the World in 80 Days! 7 – 11 p.m. Florida Museum of Natural History FEBRUARY 21

Junior League Tour of Kitchens 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. FEBRUARY 22

Guest Carillon Recital 4 p.m. Century Tower FEBRUARY 24

Startup Quest Workshop by CareerSource NCFL 1 – 4 p.m. Best Western Gateway Grand MARCH 6-8

GFAA Winter Fine Art Fair At Tioga Friday 5 – 9 p.m., Saturday & Sunday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Tioga Town Center MARCH 7

"The Wiz" Curtis M. Phillips Center MARCH 14

Run for Haven 4:30 – 9 p.m. Tioga Town Center


Happy St. Patrick’s Day! MARCH 17

Dermacare Open House 5 – 7 p.m. MARCH 20

Uptown Art Hop 6 – 9 p.m. Thornebrook Village MARCH 21

March for Babies 8 a.m. Westwood Middle School MARCH 21

Antique Tractor and Car Day 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Dudley Farm MARCH 21

Believe in Our Build: A Benefit to Support Gigi's Playhouse Emerson Alumni Hall MARCH 21 - 22

Spring Garden Festival Saturday and Sunday - Times vary Kanapaha Botanical Gardens MARCH 23 - 27

Spring Break Alachua County Public Schools

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Š 2014 iStockphoto LP. All rights reserved. Hottie Dad photo by Patricia Bishop Photography. Violet and Liam's photo by Kimberly Long Photography. | february/march 2015

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Profile for Irving Publications, LLC

Giggle Magazine February/March 2015  

Summer Camp Guide, DIY Valentine's, Sleepovers, Pasta Lunches

Giggle Magazine February/March 2015  

Summer Camp Guide, DIY Valentine's, Sleepovers, Pasta Lunches