8-9 GOOD NEWS 10-14 GOOD EVENTS
16 A NOTE FROM THE JUVENILE WELFARE BOARD by Dr. Marcie A. Biddleman
20 GOODLIVING LOCAL BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT: My Favorite Art Place
24-25 SEASONAL HOLIDAY GIVING: A Lesson in Compassion For The Whole Year
26 FILL OUR FOOD BANKS by Pamela Settle
28-29 HOLIDAY GLAM Total Image How To by Liz Everett
About the Cover Cover model is Amira, daughter of Natalya Musallam, owner of Sassy Sweethearts Boutique, a seller of stylish baby accessories. Find the store on Facebook. Photo by Alison Winterroth â€˘ alisonwinterroth.com Santa portrayed Ed Sevick. He can be booked at gigmasters.com/santa-claus/santa-ed-sevcik
30 MY STORY Three Things by SteVen Hendricks
From our family to yours: Wishes for a happy and memorable holiday season and all the best in 2016!
® HOLIDAY ISSUE 2015
Volume 6 • Issue 4
Greetings from Epcot Center’s Holiday Celebration. Our family tradition.
Publisher Light Shine Media Group, LLC
Editor-in-Chief Pamela Settle
Design and Layout Marcie Kelliher
Guest Writers Dr. Marcie Biddleman Liz Everett SteVen Hendricks
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Letter from Editor Every year I sit here and think, “I can’t believe the end of the year is here already,” and I usually write something along those lines. I want to write something different, but I can’t help it. Time is flying and I can’t believe the end of the year is here already! Nothing shows the passage of time more than a child growing up. We don’t have the four seasons to help us mark time. We have the school year calendar and the annual shopping trip to buy at least two pair of pants and a new jacket for our “winter.” This time of year is jam packed with holiday parades, lighted boat parades, home tours, holiday light shows, concerts and Santa events at all the parks and theme parks. If you can’t find a way to be festive with your kids this season, then take a look at our list inside. We didn’t have room for the full list, so check our website at GoodLivingMagazine.com for a more complete list. This is also the time for holiday giving and teaching our children to be generous and compassionate all year long. Our community is filled with opportunities to give and serve. We have provided numerous ways to engage your family in the togetherness of giving that teaches lessons to go beyond this time of year. Also encourage those you know who are lonely, depressed or living in a funk to get out there and serve. Nothing brightens the spirit more than being useful and appreciated.
GoodLiving® Magazine & GoodLivingMagazine.com P.O. Box 1795 Oldsmar, Florida 34677 (727) 776-3656 email@example.com
GoodLiving® magazine is a publication of Light Shine Media Group, LLC and is available to readers by a paid annual subscription available at tampabaygoodliving.com. Promotional copies are distributed through establishments as a courtesy to their customers and clients. Additional copies are donated to local schools as a community service. To request copies, contact firstname.lastname@example.org. All photographs, artwork, design and editorial are the sole property of GoodLiving® magazine and Light Shine Media Group, LLC. No portion of this magazine may be reproduced in any form without written permission.
That holds true for children and seniors, too, which is why we are encouraging family projects. If the holidays are a time of stress for your family, it may be a GOOD time to slow it down. Cut back on the gifts and focus on building memories and traditions that will endure the test of time with your children. My sister in law told me this year she was stopping the gift madness and is buying four gifts each for her children: Something they want, Something they need, Something to wear, Something to read. I liked that enough to share it with you! To my fellow moms out there, I realize that the responsibilities of the holidays fall mostly on your shoulders. You not only cook, bake, entertain, shop, wrap, coordinate the class party, decorate the house and dress the family, you also create the atmosphere, generate the memories and share the love. You are the heart of Christmas in your family. So here’s to you mom! Thanks for all you do for your families, your schools and our community. Cheers! Until next time,
GoodLiving® magazine and Light Shine Media Group, LLC are not responsible for statements made by advertisers and writers for any consequences arising from omissions or errors. Readers should verify the advertising information of the advertisers and all specials are valid to the expiration date set by the advertiser. GoodLiving® magazine and Light Shine Media Group, LLC reserve the right to refuse any advertising for any reason. The views expressed in the publication are not necessarily those of the publisher. All rights reserved.
Good New s
Helping Others All Year Long
BACA Helping Abused Children
Being Healthy at School Matters!
If you’ve ever been intimidated by a tough looking group of bikers, imagine being a child survivor of abuse and having those bikers be your protectors. It’s not a day dream fantasy, it’s the stuff real hero stories are made of and lived out all year long. The group is called BACA, Bikers Against Child Abuse. It’s an international group with several chapters here in Florida and the members are all 100% volunteers with training and background checks. Most of the referrals come from agencies and law enforcement. The typical scenario is a child who is facing an adult family member who has been accused of child abuse and is living in fear. The entire BACA chapter rides out for the initial meeting and he/she is given a vest with a BACA patch sewn on the back. The child is then given the name and number of two BACA members residing geographically closest to them, who then become the child’s primary contact person(s).
Nine Pinellas schools were recognized by the Alliance for a Healthier Generation for fostering healthy school environments. The schools were honored at the organization’s 2015 Leaders Summit in Washington, D.C.
Anytime day or night when the child feels scared, he or she may call upon these new biker friends for a visit to feel safe and protected. BACA members provide escorts for them or ride by the home on a regular basis. They attend court and parole hearings, attend interviews, and stay with a child when alone and frightened. All of this is done with parental permission, and their mission is not to be permanently engaged as the child’s power. Their mission is to help the children and their families learn how powerful they can be. BACA holds functions and parties for the children, as well. Locally, contact the BACA chapter in Tarpon Springs for membership information or to make donations by email at email@example.com. Meetings are open to the general public and start at 10:30 a.m. on the 4th Sunday of every month at the VFW Post 7987 at 7445 Chester McKay Dr. in New Port Richey
The following schools and educators received National Healthy School Awards: Gold Level Award • Sexton Elementary School: Suzette Burns, Principal; Jennifer Velez, Physical Education Teacher; Chris Weiss, Physical Education Teacher Silver Level Award • *Belcher Elementary School: Lisa K. Roth, Principal; Heidi Baird, Teacher; Mandy Davis, Physical Education Teacher; Susan Ford-Liddell, Teacher • Curtis Fundamental Elementary School: Pam Metz-Easley, Principal; Julie Woodka, Physical Education Teacher • Marjorie Rawlings Elementary: Rebecca Moore, Principal; Michelle Wiszowaty, Physical Education Teacher and Employee Wellness Champion Bronze Level Award • Bardmoor Elementary School: Leigh Owens, Principal; Bryan Gigliotti, Speech Language Pathologist; Mitchell Ray, Physical Education Teacher; Roisin Cugini, Cafeteria Manager • East Lake High School: Carmela C. Haley, Principal; Nancy Napierala, Employee Wellness Champion; Lisa Fisher, Physical Education /Health Department Head • Skycrest Elementary School: Angelean Bing, Principal; Jennifer Flory, School Counselor; Karen Penzien, Teacher • Tarpon Elementary School: Art Steullet, Principal; Erica Pollick, Curriculum Specialist • Tarpon Middle School: Raquel Giles, Principal; Aimee Greenbaum, ESE teacher; Susan Schermerhorn, Cafeteria Manager; Kristina DePalma, Physical Education Teacher; Mike Machado, Former Assistant Principal
BACA members keep their identities confidential but they want the community to know that they are here to help. Shown here are volunteers at a PCCPTA event.
The Alliance for a Healthier Generation works with schools, companies, community organizations, healthcare professionals and families to build healthier environments for millions of children. “Research tells us that healthy students learn better -- performing better on tests, getting better grades, attending school more often and behaving better in class,” said Dr. Howell Wechsler, CEO of the Alliance for a Healthier Generation.
Good New s Healthy school environments are implementing best practices such as: • Daily recess and physical activity breaks • Comprehensive health education • Quality physical education taught by certified physical education teachers • Healthy meals and snacks that meet or exceed federal regulations • Healthy fundraisers and celebrations • Healthy eating and physical activity programs for staff who then model positive health behaviors for students • And family and community involvement in the decision-making process Each Pinellas County School should have a healthy schools committee that is open to parents. If not, volunteer to start one so that you can be part of encouraging students and staff to eat healthy and move more. While in the office, Dr. Lisa was able to use additional therapies like Editor’s Note: Christie Bruner, a fitness trainer and St. Petersburg mom has started an eﬀort to bring recess back to all Pinellas County schools WITHOUT taking way PE classes. To join this group of activist parents, go to Pinellas Parents for PE, Recess and Healthy Schools on Facebook.
cold laser therapy on Queena.
Faith and Love Save Young Woman
It was 2009, and a young woman was returning a library book in Tampa when she was attacked and left for dead. This isn’t Giving a Hand Up a story about the attack, this is a story of faith and love. The Andrea Clark is a single mom of four who knows how it doctors told her mother, Vanna, that the girl would be in a feels to struggle to make ends meet, even when working. vegetative state for the remainder of her life. The mother had Because she knows all too well what’s out there, she enlisted faith that her daughter would be more, and today that girl the support of friends and local businesses to start, M.O.M, a named Queena can understand what you say, she can laugh 501 c(3) non-profit organization to serve the elderly, disabled and express thoughts, she can feel and she’s even working on and low income individuals with an emphasis on single parent standing up to walk. This hasn’t happened without the faith homes. Help includes finding shelter and financial assistance and love of others who have stood by Vanna to help Queena for low-income and/or homeless individuals and their families. recover from this senseless act of violence. One of the very Their commitment is to meet a broad range of needs that cover special people to step up almost immediately was Dr. Lisa far more than just shelter and charity. Each day those with Marsh, owner of the Vibrant Center for Holistic Health in M.O.M. seek to be the change they wish to see in the world. Palm Harbor. Shortly after the attack, Dr. Lisa began driving For the holiday season, they have families that local individuals to Brandon to do cranial therapy on Queena, and has been and businesses can adopt for the purpose of providing gifts. doing so for years at no charge to Vanna, who is a single These gifts go straight to the families at a Christmas party mother and struggles to provide for her daughter’s needs. on December 20th. Go their website and adopt a family at “She is a part of our family now and we love her,” commented momincfl.org. Vanna on their first visit to the Palm Harbor office in November. So when asked why she started helping, Dr. Lisa answered, “I learned about their story and I believe in miracles.” They all still believe in miracles. Vanna has begun a Facebook page called Join Queena for others to follow Queena’s progress and to be inspired by their deep faith and commitment to one another. This is a local hero story to be shared and celebrated! Queena is a hero survivor, Vanna is a hero mother and Lisa is a hero friend!
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Christmas Fun around Tampa Bay
Holiday Ice Skating Downtown Tampa on Ice at Curtis Hixon Park (through January 3) 600 N Ashley Drive A local favorite! Get in the holiday spirit by skating on an outdoor rink in the park. Each 90-minute session includes skate rental. $12. Hours: Mon. -Thurs. 4 p.m. – 9 p.m.; Fri. 4 p.m. – 10 p.m.; Sat. 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.; Sun. Noon – 9 p.m. Ice Skating at the Shops at Wiregrass in Wesley Chapel (through January 3) Ice-Skating on a synthetic rink during mall hours. $10 plus tax for 30 minutes, skates included.
Holiday Lights at Florida Botanical Gardens
Music and Lights
New at The Shops at Wiregrass is Symphony in Lights presented by Florida Hospital Wesley Chapel. Enjoy a lively array of dancing lights, dazzling decor, and snow. Shows include music of the Trans-Siberian Orchestra at 6 & 8 p.m. and the new holiday favorites at 7 & 9 p.m. Shows nightly through December 31st. A holiday tradition you will not want to miss!
Celebrate in Downtown Dade City with the annual Church Street Christmas Stroll from December 21st to 23rd from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Enjoy a historic brick street filled with magical wonders of the season, fully decorated homes, hundreds of luminaries, strolling carolers, choral groups, hot cocoa and more!
Christmas Lane in Plant City is one of the largest private Christmas displays in the country. Located at the Strawberry Festival Fairgrounds in Plant City through January 3. Santa appears nightly until Christmas Eve. Train rides for small children, concessions, live music and more than 1.5 million lights covering 100 Christmas Trees ranging from 4 to 40 feet in height. ChristmasLane.org Holiday Lights at the Florida Botanical Gardens in Largo is a great way to celebrate the season. You and your family can stroll through the beautiful gardens amidst 425,000 twinkling lights as the Gardens transform into a holiday wonderland. Music and visits with Santa Claus, too. This event is free to children 12 and under and a suggested donation of $2 per adult. Through December 31st from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. Largo Central Park has more than TWO MILLION LED lights that will dazzle the park until January 3rd. Families are invited to walk through the park and see the dazzling displays of trains, toy bears, carolers, toy soldiers and many more at no cost. Most nights will feature a campfire to enjoy after strolling through the park and concessions will be available for purchase. See a half million lights at this extraordinary light display. The Oakdale Christmas House is located at 2719 Oakdale Street S. in St. Petersburg and runs through January 3rd. Open 6 to 10 p.m. daily. christmasdisplay.org
The Safety Harbor Christmas Parade takes place Saturday, December 19 at 1 p.m. Enjoy floats, old fashioned cars, Shriners, and Santa rolling down Main Street. All ages, free. Traffic closed from Bayshore to 9th Avenue from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. The Holiday Stroll in Largo will be held on three Saturdays this year: December 5th, 12th and 19th. Expanded to have more than one million LED lights and enough entertainment to fill Largo Central Park with a wide variety of family activities including a craft fair, kid’s crafts, movie in the park, music, chalk fest, kid’s snow area, carriage rides and much more. Check their website to see which events are on which date, as activities will change. These family-friendly events are free. 6:30 - 9:30 p.m. Limited on-site parking for $5 will be available, along with free park and walk from Largo Middle School. Largo.com Dunedin’s Old Fashioned Christmas and Christmas Parade takes place Saturday, December 12th from 4 p.m. -9 p.m. Enjoy a family favorite in this quaint town with carriage rides, snow glides, train rides, children’s holiday crafts, old fashioned games, live music and Santa Claus. The Pinellas Park Christmas Parade has been a tradition since 1972. This year’s 43rd annual parade is Saturday, December 12th. The parade steps off at 6 p.m. at 58th Street (railroad tracks) and proceeds eastbound on Park Boulevard to The Shoppes at Park Place. Plan to be seated by 4:30 p.m. to get a spot and be prepared for a long parade. This popular parade typically has about 125 entries.
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Christmas Fun around Tampa Bay Christmas Town at Busch Gardens
Lighted Boat Parades Clearwater Island Estates Yacht Club Boat Parade takes place December 12th at 6:30 p.m. Boats assemble in Mandalay Channel and head to Coachman Park, under the Memorial Causeway Bridge and to the Clearwater Yacht Club. St. Petersburg’s 28th Annual Illuminated Boat Parade is on Saturday, December 12th at 6 p.m. The Holiday Festival begins at 3 p.m. with great live entertainment, food, children’s activities and the spectacular boat parade that travels from Bayboro, along the shoreline in and around the Vinoy Basin and back out into Tampa Bay. Lake Tarpon Christmas Boat Parade benefiting Wheelchairs 4 Kids is December 12th from 6:30 - 9 p.m. Hosted by the Tarpon Turtle. Registration is $30 per boat with proceeds going to Wheelchairs 4 Kids. Gulfport Christmas Boat Parade is Saturday, December 12th at 6 p.m. The parade starts out of the Gulfport Municipal Marina, by the BCYC clubhouse to the bay and ends in Isla del Sol. Hillsborough River Holiday Boat Parade takes place Saturday, December 13th at 6 p.m. Paddlers with kayaks and canoes, along with boaters, are welcome and needed for this magical boat parade. Launch at the Lowry Park boat ramp. Spectators may enjoy the parade of lights until 7 p.m. at Lowry Park, from their riverfront docks or at Sulphur Springs City Pool Park, where there’s plenty of parking and room to view the parade. Treasure Island Holiday Boat Parade is December 19th at 6 p.m. Experience the spectacle that has been called “Las Vegas on Water” at this year’s 30th Anniversary. Treasure Island residents are invited to the Cast-off Party at The Club at Treasure Island featuring complimentary Christmas cake, hot cider, hot dogs, coffee, cash bar, live entertainment and a special appearance by Mr. and Mrs. Claus. Admission is one unwrapped toy for charity. If you don’t have a boat, get on the “the pirate ship.”
Busch Gardens® has been transformed into Christmas Town™, their annual holiday wonderland of Christmastime entertainment. New this year is the Holly Jolly Christmas Party, where Mrs. Claus and her elves join you for dinner with a delicious all-you-care-to-eat pizza and salad buffet at the Garden Gate Café. The party keeps going with fun holiday activities, including writing a letter to Santa, decorating decadent cupcakes and singing classic Christmas carols. Also new is the Christmas Town™ VIP Experience that gives ticket holders: · Front-of-the-line access to Santa’s House presented by Coca-Cola®,
Happy New Year Family Style First Night St. Petersburg Ring in the New Year at First Night in Downtown St. Petersburg. Start with First Kids from 4 p.m to 7 p.m. at the First United Methodist Church with hat and mask making, musical petting zoo and giant puppets created with the Morean Center for Clay. St Pete Makers will host an LED light making station to make a New Year’s Eve chapeau. There will be Science Superhero Shows by Mad Science. First Kids will finish with a colorful procession with Giant Sea Creature Puppets to the waterfront at 7:15 p.m. led by the Mount Zion Drumline and Color Guard just in time for the Bubble Stomp and the First Fireworks at 8 p.m.
· An exclusive up-close encounter with Busch Gardens’ African penguins. · VIP seating to Christmas On Ice · Commemorative photo with Santa Claus and refillable hot chocolate mug. For more information about these exclusive experiences, visit ChristmasTown.com for pricing and reservations. Christmas Town is included with any annual pass, Fun Card or daily admission to the park. Follow deals and announcements at the park’s blog at BuschGardensTampaBlog.com, or “Like” the Busch Gardens Facebook page.
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Christmas Fun in Orlando The fun continues on December 31st for a very special Kids’ New Year’s Eve Party. The younger set gets to rock out with a live DJ Dance Party and a grand finale featuring an impressive LEGO® fireworks display and a chance to watch the BRICK Drop at just the right time for kids, midnight KST (Kid Standard Time) - otherwise known as 7 p.m. EST. Florida.Legoland.com
North Pole Express at the Florida Railroad Museum
ICE at Gaylord Palms Hotel in Orlando 6000 W Osceola Parkway in Kissimmee. This annual event is a local favorite to feel the chill of a White Christmas. This year’s theme is Twas the Night Before Christmas and so the two million pounds of hand-carved ice sculptures will be elaborate representatives of that iconic story. Plus 40 tons of snow and a snow tube slide that has an extra admission price. The venue provides warm coats, but be sure to wear warm socks and brings gloves and maybe a hat. Bundle up the babies and enjoy!
Book a trip to the North Pole via the Florida Railroad Museum in Parrish. Travel on a nighttime train ride 13 miles north to a mock North Pole, a fun overall experience for kids to enjoy. Once at the North Pole, enjoy time to roast marshmallows, sip hot chocolate and eat cookies while listening to great Christmas tales in the storytelling area. Christmas comes to life at the Florida Railroad Museum with this magical train ride to see Santa at the North Pole. Advance tickets start at $24 for children and $29 for adults. First class seats are available. Book early, as tickets tend to sell out. frrm.org
Advance ticket prices for ICE only: $28.99 ($26.99 seniors), $14.99 ages 4-12, 3 & younger are free. $20 parking.
Grinchmas at Universal Studios Have you always wanted to be in New York City during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade? Visit Universal Studios Florida to see the larger than life balloons float by just as they do in real life! Head to Universal’s Islands of Adventure to enjoy the whimsical world of Dr. Seuss through Grinchmas. Based on the Dr. Seuss story, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, watch the Grinchmas Who-liday Spectacular where all your favorite characters come to life and Dr. Seuss’ Landing becomes alive with the holiday spirit being spread by all the Whos from Who-ville, and yes, even the Grinch himself ! UniversalOrlando.com
Legoland Florida Christmas Bricktacular with holiday-themed festivities on Saturdays and Sundays in December are included with park admission. Take a family photo in front of the giant LEGO® Christmas Tree, scour the park in the Santa Scavenger Hunt and enjoy decorations and holiday entertainment throughout your visit.
Now Snowing at Celebration Just outside of Orlando, in the town of Celebration, it is Now Snowing three times a night in December. Take a ride around this picturesque town on a horse drawn carriage or by train. Ice skate on the synthetic ice rink in central Florida. Enjoy dinner at one of the wonderful restaurants on Main Street. Free concerts on Saturdays. Strolling carolers, photos with Santa. Make a night of it at and celebrate the holidays in Celebration $10 for a 1/2 hour minimum skate (skate rental included) 4-10 p.m. daily. Horse and Carriage Rides $25 for the first 2 passengers, $10 each additional person. Train Rides $5 at the gate or $4 in advance if purchased at Confetti, Market Street Gallery, Sweet Escape or Sanrio Surprises. Celebrationtowncenter.com
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Nobody does holiday magic like Disneyworld. It’s a treat to look forward to each year and can very easily become a Florida family tradition. Main Street USA welcomes visitors to Magic Kingdom with festive decorations leading up to the icicle-light covered Cinderella’s castle. Holiday warmth greets you throughout the park, characters are in Christmas themed costumes and the nightly parade jingles and jangles with Christmas songs, Christmas floats and Santa surprising kids at the end. Select nights buy separate tickets to the Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. The spectacular Christmas Candlelight Processional at Epcot Center is a moving choir performance of Christmas hymns with a celebrity reading of the Christmas story that happens three times a day. Visit the World Showcase to experience holiday traditions, food and shopping from the countries represented at Christmas Around the World.
Downtown Disney has undergone some changes and is now called Disney Springs. There is no admission to enjoy the unique decor at the neighborhoods: The Marketplace décor will make guests feel right at home with colorful wreaths and trees with a handmade touch. The Landing is a bit more glam with silver and gold décor amidst the glittering holiday lights.
Due to changes at Hollywood Studios, this is the last year to see the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights, one of the largest such displays in the country. The Streets of America are bathed in millions of lights that dance to music.
At West Side, guests will be transported to a magical winter wonderland with vibrant blue ornaments, beautiful white holiday lights and contemporary Christmas trees. For entertainment, The Marketplace has holiday carolers performing favorite Christmas tunes from 6-10 p.m. each evening through December 30th. Don’t forget to stop to visit Santa Claus. His Chalet is in a new location by the Waterside Stage, where guests can meet him through Christmas Eve from 12-10:30 p.m. Again this year, guests will be given a pager so they can return when it’s their time. From December 25th-29th, Santa Goofy will greet guests during the same hours in the Chalet location. Waterview Park at The Landing gives guests the chance to learn about and experience the story of Hanukkah through music. Showtimes are scheduled throughout the evenings from December 6th - 13th.
Good Even ts La Nouba by Cirque du Soleil During a visit to Di Disney Springs, get tickets to enjoy La Nouba before or after a delicious meal at Wolfgang Puck’s N restaurant right next door. Unlike a traditional American circus, this is art, acrobatics and story telling along with breathtaking aerial performances, trapeze artists, balancers and a couple of pretty funny clowns. The show is a collection of acts that weaves together dreams and nightmares in the story that utilizes 65 international performers, opulent sets, brilliant choreography, theatrical lighting and live music under the permanent big top that is home to show. The show is an artistic and stylistic contrast to all that is Disney in the surrounding area. In other words, you won’t see anything else like it in the land of theme parks and dinner shows. Every aspect of La Nouba from the costumes to the skilled performances delivers on the expectation of quality that one associates with the Cirque du Soleil brand. It is fast moving and thrilling entertainment, so the kids will
Cirque du Soleil stay with it. For the adults, it is telling a story about memories, memories that challenge us to uncover passions we thought we had lost long ago. La Nouba performs Tuesdays - Saturdays at 6 and 9 p.m. The theater is dark Sundays, Mondays and select times throughout the year. It’s recommended to purchase tickets in advance. Check for current pricing at cirquedusoleil.com/lanouba
a note from Juvenile Welfare Board of Pinellas County Investing in Children. Strengthening our Community. All Kids Matter!
Safe Sleep Tips
Over the past four years, more than 150 young children in the Tampa Bay area have died from causes that were 100% preventable. These deaths were the result of one of the three leading causes of preventable death for children under six: suffocation due to co-sleeping or other unsafe sleep environments, drowning, and abusive head trauma. That’s why the Juvenile Welfare Board, together with the Department of Children and Families, Eckerd Community Alternatives, and the Children’s Board of Hillsborough County, have launched a regional child safety public awareness campaign called Warning Signs. In Pinellas County, a work group has formed to develop a local plan to help spread the message with a goal of saving young lives. In column over the summer, I shared some facts and tips for GoodLiving readers related to drowning and water safety. In this column, I’d like to focus on safe sleep for infants. Did you know that infants are 40 times more likely to die in adult beds than in their own cribs and that nearly 74% of deaths in babies younger than four months happened in a bed-sharing situation? The risks go up even higher when adults smoke, take medications, use drugs or alcohol, or are obese. The safest way for an infant to sleep is on his or her back, alone in a crib. If you are the parent or caregiver of an infant – or if you are their grandparent, relative, neighbor, co-worker, or family friend – please pay attention and share this life-saving information. To learn more visit PreventNeedlessDeaths.com.
The safest way for an infant to sleep is on his or her back alone in a crib.
We have changed our habits about car seats and lead paint; changing habits around the dangers of co-sleeping and other unsafe sleep environments for infants will save lives, too.
Room-sharing offers almost all of the benefits of bed-sharing, without the risks – bring your baby’s crib into your room for the first six months of life.
Because all children matter, and because one preventable death of a child is one too many!
Put your baby to sleep on his or her back in a crib with a tight-fitting crib sheet and firm mattress.
Dr. Marcie A. Biddleman
Keep the crib free of blankets, pillows, bumper pads and stuffed animals.
Executive Director Juvenile Welfare Board
Use a sleep sack to keep the baby warm – not a loose blanket.
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Live Free! wishes everyone a wonderful holiday season to enjoy family and friends. Please make a commitment to stay safe. Do not drive if you are drinking alcohol. Do not ride with someone who has been drinking. Teach your kids the same! Visit the resources page at pinellascoalition.com for a list of transportation options. Also talk with your children and ask them make the pledge to LiveFree! as their gift to you and to their future.
Live Free! Coalitions are at some middle and high schools in Pinellas County. Their purpose is to encourage young people to not use alcohol or drugs through education, projects and peer support. Students have this say to parents about talking to your teen about these issues. From the Pinellas Park High School Live Free Club: “While bringing up the topic of drugs and alcohol with your child may be difficult, even awkward, the topic is crucial to be discussed in order to guarantee your child leads a safe, healthy and drug-free lifestyle. Approaching the topic positively is a must--if your child feels he/she is being accused of something they have not done yet, the message may be overlooked or perhaps watered down by a negative environment. A typical approach by parents is that of a strict attitude forbidding drugs with no explanation. Being gentle while maintaining a firm stance is important. Telling kids they should stay away from drugs is necessary, however leaving out the “why” could lessen the impact of the message. Finding and presenting facts, accounts, and maybe even personal experiences or mistakes will allow your child a deeper understanding of why staying away from drugs is so important.”
From Jakob Grimm, President of Live Free! “Interact Club” at Countryside High School: “Talk about it with them, you want to get to your kid before drugs do. Even if they have already encountered them, you need to address with your kids the dangers of drugs and make it clear to them it’s not cool. It is part of your job as a parent to protect your kids by supplying them information to protect themselves with. Also, for some families, agreements are important and helpful. Sometimes the topic comes up when its too late, so nip it in the bud. In terms of how to help them avoid certain temptations or alcohol, the wrong people or groups lead people astray. Encourage their healthy friendships. My uncle has always told my cousin ‘if you are ever in danger or need help or at a party, call me.’ Regardless of what the situation is my cousin can call him and he will pick him up and not touch the topic for a few days, but be proud that his son was willing to admit his wrongdoings for his own safety.”
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Local Business Spotlight: My Favorite Art Place 1750 N. Hercules Ave., Clearwater, FL 727-726-7411 • my favoriteartplace.com Helping people to surround themselves with art that makes their heart happy! y Jerri Menual and her husband Scott call their little shop on Hercules home away from home. Now called My Favorite Art Place, the building houses Canvas Zoo, Menual Fine Art, Image Creations of Florida, Motivation Expressions and more. These two entrepreneurs can help customers with a wide variety of photographic, framing, custom canvas and art needs. Before you think that the everyday person won’t need their services, consider that you can create a custom gift for everyone on your holiday shopping list in just one stop to their building or website. Have an athlete or a student getting ready to graduate? Create a custom collage of sports and school memories, including photos, newspaper articles, program listings, yearbook mentions, awards and more. How about the aunt or grandparent that is challenging to buy for? Create a custom collage of family photos that will appear inside the block letters that spell out F-A-M-I-L-Y or your last name. For the parent with dear memories of family passed on, have old family photos restored and framed. For the pet lover, create pop art out of a photo. For a family, create a silhouetted work of art from their family photo. For colleagues, college students or yourself, create a motivational poster on canvas that includes a logo, motto or saying of importance. The key word here is CUSTOM, and who doesn’t love a personalized gift that has meaning? There are other services that do canvas, but this local business can do more for you with their one-to-one customer service with the shop owners. This ensures you get the highest quality for your special gifts.
Jerri is ac ve in her community as a small business owner and supporter of the arts. She sits on the Clearwater Public Art and Design Board, she is an SPC College Workforce and Community Partner (using interns and hiring students), she founded the Tampa Bay Chapter of Charity Chics, and she hosts a free monthly event, Visual Ar sts Success Workshops to help visual ar sts grow their businesses. Jerri also designed and executed 100Plus Ar sts for 100Plus Years to promote art in Clearwater during the Centennial celebra on.
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Seasonal Holiday Giving A Lesson in Compassion for the Whole Year Between the holidays and the search for year-end tax deductions, November and December are big months for donations. However, in our rush to get through the “to-do” list, we may go through the motions of giving without taking the time to stop and teach the lesson of generosity to our children. Giving food and toys are the typical ways families give at the holidays. GoodLiving® has these suggestions to reach out a little further this season and through the year.
Vuln nerable e Chilldren Children in Foster Care. Our community has an ongoing waiting list of thousands of children who need to be placed in foster homes, either temporarily or permanently. Consider welcoming a foster child into your home in 2016. Eckerd Community Alternatives manages foster care in our county and they constantly need supplies for children from infants to teenagers who are removed from their homes through no fault of their own. Many times they leave with very little and rely on community generosity for the basics like toothbrushes and pajamas. Teach children to have compassion for a child of the same gender and age by talking about how it must feel to be alone and frightened. Children in early elementary grades are able to comprehend this, so encourage them to hold a school drive for new pajamas, age appropriate hygiene items, small suitcases or duffel bags or stuffed animals. A group of motivated children can be empowered to make a big impact. Individually, a family can also do a shopping trip where each child in the family chooses items to donate to a foster child that is the same age and gender. Take them with you to the drop off location and let them bring it in so they can see the benefit of their efforts.
Drop off Sites for Eckerd to Help Foster Children Eckerd Community Alterna ves 8550 Ulmerton Road, Ste. 130 • Largo, Florida 33771 Eckerd Support Center 100 Starcrest Drive • Clearwater, FL 33765 Home Banc 2046 Bayshore Blvd. • Dunedin, FL 34698 Tropical Scooters 11594 Seminole Blvd • Largo, FL 33778 To coordinate pick-up or drop oﬀ, call (855) 450-4673.
Helping moms with babies. Looking for a different kind of helping opportunity this season? Donate diapers and other baby supplies to moms right here in our community through Babycycle. This organization gets the needed items right into the hands of the moms who need supplies. They don’t believe that any mom should choose between food and a clean diaper for their baby. Rally moms at your childcare center or place of worship and do a Diaper Donation Day for the holidays. Donate diapers and wipes to Babycycle. Serving Pinellas County families. BabycycleFL.org
Chilldren with Se eriouss Illlne essess Make the holiday season and 2016 brighter by helping an organization that serves children with illnesses. All Children’s Hospital in St. Petersburg has an ongoing need for toys, from infants through teenagers. For health reasons, only new toys can be accepted. Cheer up children in the hospital this season by collecting toys to donate. Here’s a short list of some toys to buy: teething toys, stacking toys, puzzles, Little People sets, kid books, board games, dolls, coloring books, craft kits, action figures and teen novels. Drop oﬀ toys at the All Children’s Hospital Lobby: 501 6th Avenue South • St. Petersburg, FL 33701 Ronald McDonald House Charities in St. Petersburg serves the families of children who are staying at All Children’s Hospital. The holiday season can be especially difficult for families away from home, so there are many ways to brighten their days. Their food kitchens are always in need of fresh and non-perishable food items. Packaged holiday treats are a nice addition to the season. They accept unwrapped gifts for kids of all ages who are the siblings staying at the houses with the parents. They especially need boy toys. Consider some new release movie DVDs or $10 gift cards for restaurants, gas stations, Target or Wal-Mart, iTunes or Amazon. They also accept gift wrapping supplies to help them with gift giving. Deliver to any of the St. Petersburg Ronald McDonald Houses: • East House 401 7th Ave S • St. Petersburg, FL 33701 • Central House 601 5th St S • St. Petersburg, FL 33701 • West House Manager 702 8th Ave S • St Petersburg, FL 33701
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T he Ollder Generration n
Gettting Kids in on the e Actiion
Many seniors are alone during the holidays. They can be in your neighborhood, in your place of worship, in the local assisted living facility or a nursing home.
Since many organizations have rules that prohibit children under the age of 14 to volunteer, parents need to get creative.
Talk with friends and family to discuss how you can brighten the season for the elderly in your area. Get a group of children together and make holiday greeting cards and crafts to deliver. Arrange for a caroling group to sing. Collect money from friends to purchase socks and blankets to deliver as gifts. Deliver cookies or other goodies to the folks in your neighborhood to show them that someone cares. Be a Santa to a Senior Visit a Beall’s Outlet Store in the county to select a gift idea off their angel tree for a local senior citizen who may not receive any gifts or cards at Christmas. Local businesses work with Home Instead Senior Care to identify local need and deliver the gifts. BeaSantatoaSenior.com and search your zip code for closest loca on.
Young children are old enough and bold enough to ask grown ups they know for money to support a cause if they feel passionate about helping. Teach them about a situation that is understandable and age appropriate, like buying food for hungry children, buying a goat for a village or buying books for a local charity. Editor’s Note: It’s really hard for a grown up to resist a cute little person asking for $5 for a worthy cause. Find a local fun run/walk or 5K and enlist friends and neighborhood children to work together as a team to raise money for their efforts by going door to door in the neighborhood (with supervision of course) or to local businesses. Have a hot chocolate sale or set up a corner for Christmas Caroling in your neighborhood or at your church. Make signs for the kids to hold asking for support of their cause. Recruit a group of children to do a social media campaign to raise attention for a cause. Support a Go Fund Me Page for a local family in need of help.
T he Homelless and Hung gry y Giving money to Salvation Army, the Homeless Emergency Project or other homeless outreach projects is a big help. Volunteer to work at Metropolitan Ministries or another food serving program as a way to teach children the value of what they have. Collect food items and feed our food banks like RCS Food Bank, not only in December but through the year ahead. See our list of places in Pinellas County to give. Additionally, we have school children in every part of the county who get their meals primarily served at school. There are three organizations locally that work with local churches and organizations to collect food and pack backpacks for holiday breaks and weekends. Each of these organizations is need of constant support to keep the food flowing to thousands of hungry children right here in our county. Help them get through the winter holiday break and then continue into 2016! Go to the TheKindMouse.org for informa on on how to donate food. Support Pack a Sack 4 Kids. Contact Lewis Hill at firstname.lastname@example.org for informa on on how to donate food Beth Dillinger Founda on’s Nourish to Flourish. Make a cash dona on at BethDillinger.org.
For an adventurous season of giving ideal for all children, preschoolers through teenagers, create a giving game with your family, school or church group, scout troop or club to share a sentiment of love, caring, appreciation or celebration. Choose who you are going to share your random acts of Christmas with, such as local law enforcement or fire, teachers, residents of a nursing home, foster children, crossing guards, or residents of a domestic violence shelter. Create handmade cards with messages like, “ You are cared for and prayed for,” or “ You are appreciated for the hard work you do,” or “We are celebrating you and wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.” A card and a candy cane delivered will make the season brighter for all involved. In flash mob style, get a small group together in holiday attire and stand outside of a store and hand out your greetings to passersby. Go through the mall. Prearrange to take an energetic group of teens to stop at a nursing home, a hospice organization or the VA hospital. Note: This can be designed to celebrate Hanukkah, Kwanza, the Winter Solstice or a healthy New Year. Whatever this holiday season means to you, you can share the goodness that is within your heart with others. There is no shortage of kindness in the world, so get creative and spread some joy!
Christmas Eve Activity 1 Minute Mommy Parenting Education & Resources is hosting its 3rd Annual Christmas Eve Volunteer with your Child Event at the Metropolitan Ministries Holiday Tent. Children eight years and older along with a parent are invited to participate in this annual event that teaches children a valuable lesson about those less fortunate and how generosity can impact others. Sign up for the event, Thursday, December 24th from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. by contacting Paige Michaelis at email@example.com
Take it one step further and find people in your neighborhood, school or place of worship who need some holiday cheer. Secretly drop off a card with a plate of cookies on their porch. Slip a card with a gift card on to a teacher’s desk or send the gift anonymously to a family in need. Think of the joy you’ll be sharing the fun you’ll be having with your children blessing others with this new holiday tradition!
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FOOD BANKS by PAMELA SETTLE, EDITOR Every year, we remind our readers how important it is that we share our abundance of food and blessings with those who are less fortunate. The economy in Florida is still struggling. Non-profits are still behind past levels of giving. Government programs are at or near capacity. Yet we still have senior citizens and children who go to bed hungry. We still have students who eat their only meals while at school. In my regular “Vote” column, I will continue to remind readers, as well, that we need to vote for candidates who see the people at the ground level in America and who will take a stand for our children and their future. We can’t sustain our way of life if we let our children go hungry. We can do better than that. Everyone can be part of the giving season. No matter your individual situation, there is someone who needs you and someone you can help. Please don’t assume that someone else is doing it or that you’re not rich enough to matter. It is in this true spirit of caring and giving, that GoodLiving magazine has issued a community challenge called, “Fill our Food Banks!”
First United Methodist Church of Pinellas Park Can Cupboard 9025 49th Street North Pinellas Park, FL 33782 (727) 546-5741 gbgm-umc.org/firstfl Mattie Williams Neighborhood Family Center 1003 Dr. ML King Jr. Street North Safety Harbor, FL 34695 (727) 791-8255 shnfc.org Oldsmar Cares 163 State Road 580 West Oldsmar, FL 34677 (813) 415-7373 oldsmarcares.org
The following is a short list of food banks that need your help. R.C.S. (Religious Community Services) There are many more that can be found at 211Connects.org. Contact them by phone first before dropping off food as hours of Food Bank 700 Druid Road collection vary by organization. Clearwater, FL 33756 Abundant Life Ministries (727) 443-4031 1550 Belcher Road South rcspinellas.org Largo, FL 33771 (727) 210-LIFE x5433 Salvation Army Clearwater Social Services abundantlifeministries.cc 1521 E. Druid Rd. NEW! Dunedin Cares Clearwater, FL 33756 1620 Pinehurst Road (727) 446-4177 Dunedin, Fl 34697 salvationarmyclearwater.com/more_about_us.htm Dunedincares.org Salvation Army Tarpon Springs Social Services F.E.A.S.T. Food Pantry 209 S. Pinellas Ave 2255 Nebraska Avenue Tarpon Springs, FL 34689 Palm Harbor, FL 34683 (727) 934-4476 (727) 789-5275 salvationarmy.org feastfoodpantry.com
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Holiday glamour is one of the trickiest things in the world for women-- besides what to wear to weddings and on first dates. It is never easy for us because we over think everything! So I already know what you are thinking… How in the world am I supposed to get my family ready and get myself all glammed up too? Thankfully that is my area of expertise and I am happy to help you! Before we get started though let me remind you how special and amazing you are! Being a mom is one of the most important jobs in the world. I know you hesitate to spend money on yourself because you want your children to have the best life you can possibly give them, but don’t forget that you also have to teach your beautiful baby that being a mom is a worthy job too. You deserve to have your moment in the spotlight. So this holiday season, it’s time to get your glam on! Below I have created 5 easy steps to help you execute your holiday look with glamorous excellence:
Step 1 – Think Outside That Box! Don’t be worried about what you usually wear or how people normally perceive you. It is time for you to spice it up and the holiday season is the perfect time of year to do it. Grab magazines like Redbook, Glamour or Instyle to see what is hot and trending. Find a couple of things you may want to try or treat yourself to, as well, so that you can have something to look forward to that you saw your favorite celebrity wear-- like a great lip gloss or a pair of cute earrings. That is also a great conversation starter at parties as well. Just start opening your mind to the stylish possibilities!
Step 2 – Shop But Don’t Drop… I shop a lot-- but I shop hard. I usually know exactly what I want, but lately I have been shopping sales so I can try new things as well. One of my favorite places to shop is online so I encourage you to find retailers that you can go to quickly to have great pieces shipped to you without having to leave the convenience of your home. I compiled a list of great sites to help you search for pieces you love. Remember ONLY buy what you love so give yourself time to comb through and explore. Start scouring their sale rack first but if you find something you love that is full price, rock it! You have to be price conscious but there is nothing wrong with investing in your confidence.
By LIZ EVERETT, TOTAL IMAGE STYLIST
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FOR R PLUS S SIZES S: elloqu uii.com fo orev ver21.com m ciitych hiconline e.com
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Step 3 – BeYOUtiful You So when it comes to hair and makeup you may feel totally stuck in a rut, but for the holiday season I say try something totally outside of your comfort zone. If you normally wear your hair up, wear it down or if you have never really felt fancy, try a side chignon. Don’t let your wedding day be the only day you have ever felt gorgeous. The easier thing for you to do though for makeup color is to buy a full palette. One of my favorite palettes for the holidays is Bella J’s Deluxe Eye, Cheek & Lip set ($32.50 at Nordstrom) and you will go ga ga over it just like I did!
Step 4 – Embrace the Glam! Now, when it is the day of the party everything may not go perfectly planned, but I encourage you to pump up the jams or the Christmas music and take 15 minutes for yourself. By then you will have ordered your outfit, got your families outfits together or got a sitter, bought your new color palette to help you paint some color into your life and maybe even watched a few YOUtube videos to figure out a fabulous holiday hairstyle. All you have to do at that point is just embrace the glamour of the season so that you can be a shining star! Take a chance on yourself because that night you are going to be the most gorgeous mom at the part party. But more importantly you will feel great about yourself you because you invested in your presentation.
I believe in you! From an early age, glamour was Liz Evere ’s second language. Helping her clients develop their image into their brand calling card is more than her business, it is her passion. From the basics of wardrobe & beauty to strategizing the equa on of a me culously cra ed personal brand persona, Liz Evere Style is ready to help you with all of your total image needs. Image is everything, so make sure your projec ng the success you deserve! LizEvere Style.com / Email LizEvere Style@gmail.com
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As a dedicated father of two twenty-something daughters and two teenaged boys, I believe it is my duty to make a conscience effort to raise them with good morals and strong values. I regularly place a significant amount of emphasis on giving and showing ‘respect’ and following the Hendricks motto, “Represent the Hendricks name well today and respect every person that you come in contact with…” I believe this is key in raising my children, especially in today’s society.
Three Things by STEVEN HENDRICKS
So my oldest son Aaron is at that high school age – 15 – where he is beginning to be interested in girls and vice versa, but he won’t talk with me about it because he is very private, which is understandable at this age. So as I was praying over him one night while he was asleep, I decided to share this advice with him in a card before he went to a female classmate’s 16th birthday party. Here’s what I wrote inside the card that I left on his nightstand: Aaron, as you grow older and become more interested in developing and having a relationship with a woman, here are a set of “three things” Dad has learned over the years that I would like to share, teach, and encourage you to learn about women. I have learned that there are three things I can change about a woman...her last name, her address, and the way she feels about Christian men...especially me! I’ve learned there’s three things I should be to a woman...her spiritual leader, her security, and her best friend. I’ve learned there’s three things I should say to a woman...I love you, I got you, and don’t worry about a thing because I’m your man and I got this…! I’ve learned there’s three things I should give to a woman...my last name, a ring of promise & commitment, and my everything. I’ve learned there’s three things I should accept from a woman...her children as my own (if she has any from a previous relationship), her prayers, and her heart. I’ve learned there’s three things I should listen for in a woman...her dreams, her thoughts, and her cries.
I am a strong believer that their character development is my responsibility. Recently, one of my boys was wearing his HENDRICKS University sweatshirt that says Discipline, Structure, and Respect and was asked by the store clerk, “Where is Hendricks University and what do those words mean?” My son Joshua responded, “Hendricks is my last name and the school is at my parents’ house where we are taught Discipline, Structure, and Respect.” These three principles are the cornerstones to how I am parenting and raising my children. Their moral training and character development begins with me, their father, and not with today’s society. My focus is directed at that which is in their hearts. My overall parenting goal is ‘heart training,’ because this has the most impact in helping them control their tongue, think about their actions, handle negative emotions and make better, wiser, and sounder decisions. I’m also focused on how I impart wisdom to them through my own actions. I’m not just raising and parenting them, but I’m training and teaching them on how to build, develop and nurture future healthy relationships– and it all begins and ends with the heart.
And finally, I’ve learned there’s three things I should cherish in a woman...her laughter, her kisses, and her love...!
Still no word from my son on the card, but I’m okay with that, because I will remain forever faithful in training, teaching, and raising my boys in the best way that God has directed me. Someday, some young lady is going to marry an outstanding young man in my son, and that’s my goal – to prepare him for that day…!
Have a good time at your young lady friend’s birthday party and remember to honor, respect, and celebrate her on her special day. -Dad
SteVen Hendricks Tampa, Florida
I’ve learned there’s three things I should see in a woman...her value, her loyalty, and her smile.
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P.O. Box 1795 Oldsmar, Florida 34677