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DECEMBER 2017 / JANUARY 2018 DOUBLE

FREE

VOL.24 NO.11/12

ISSUE

Au Pairs to the

Rescue Live-in caregivers from abroad offer an alternative to daycare BY ALISON NOVAK, PAGE 30

BROUGHT TO YOU BY

Real-Life Wonders

House in the Trees

Skating in Stowe

DIY Board Games


presented by VERMONT BALLET THEATER

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KIDSVT.COM DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018 KIDS VT

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Timber Lane Pediatrics

We’ve been providing pediatric care in the Burlington area for over 40 years. Our physicians and staff continue to dedicate themselves to the health and care of infants, children and adolescents from birth through age 22. Our goal is to provide you with the best medical care for your family. We are accepting new patients at our 3 locations.

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KIDS VT

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018 KIDSVT.COM

The Barns at Lang Farm...

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ONE STOP TO CREATE, EAT, SHOP! A multisensory creative playspace

Tinkering I Paint Exploration Sensory Play I Open Ended Art Your local children’s resale boutique, buying and selling your favorite brands at preferred prices. Gently-loved clothing and paraphernalia for little free-thinkers

OPEN STUDIO, BIRTHDAY PARTIES, FIELD TRIPS/SOCIAL EVENTS, SCHOOL AGE ENRICHMENT, PRESCHOOL & TODDLER CLASSES

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EDITOR’S NOTE

STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS COPUBLISHER/EXECUTIVE EDITOR

Cathy Resmer

cathy@kidsvt.com COPUBLISHER

Colby Roberts

colby@kidsvt.com MANAGING EDITOR

Alison Novak

alison@kidsvt.com CONTRIBUTING EDITOR

Mary Ann Lickteig

maryann@kidsvt.com ART DIRECTOR

Brooke Bousquet brooke@kidsvt.com

MARKETING & EVENTS DIRECTOR

Corey Grenier

corey@kidsvt.com ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE

Kaitlin Montgomery kaitlin@kidsvt.com

CALENDAR WRITER

Brett Stanciu

brett@kidsvt.com PROOFREADERS

Carolyn Fox, Kara Torres, Elizabeth Seyler PRODUCTION MANAGER

John James CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Don Eggert DESIGNERS

Kirsten Cheney, Rev. Diane Sullivan, Richele Young CIRCULATION MANAGER

Matt Weiner BUSINESS MANAGER

Cheryl Brownell CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

PHOTOGRAPHERS

James Buck, Sam Simon, Matthew Thorsen ILLUSTRATORS

Sean Metcalf, Marc Nadel

Published 11 times per year. Circulation: 25,000 at 600+ locations throughout northern and central Vermont. © 2017 Da Capo Publishing Inc. All rights reserved.

A

handful of books loom large in my childhood. I remember being blown away when my fourth grade teacher, Mr. Brownsword, read The Phantom Tollbooth aloud to our class. He paced around the room in stocking feet and narrated with such expressiveness that Milo and his whimsical adventures are forever emblazoned in my mind. I went through a mystery phase, entranced with titles like The Girl with the Silver Eyes and From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. And, as I got older, Judy Blume answered my burning questions, and raised a few more, in books like Blubber and Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. I can’t say for certain what books will stand out in my kids’ minds when they grow up, but, for my 10-year-old daughter, Mira, I’d bet that R.J. Palacio’s Wonder will make the cut. The novel centers around Auggie Pullman, a fifth grader with facial differences entering school for the first time. When my husband read the book to Mira last year, she soon became obsessed with all things Wonder. She’s read the companion book, Auggie & Me: Three Wonder Stories, and still listens to the Wonder audio book almost every night before bed. She couldn’t wait for the movie based on the book to come out, and it was a joy to see it with our whole family in November. Though I’d like to think that my kids are naturally empathetic, I also know that books like Wonder — with its motto, “Choose Kind” — give them a deeper understanding of what it’s like to be different. I’m grateful to Palacio and other children’s authors who’ve written books in a similar vein for providing reading material that stimulates kids’ minds and their hearts. In this month’s issue, Ken Picard writes about plastic surgeon Dr. Donald Laub, who performs operations on children in Vermont and overseas who have facial differences similar to those of Wonder’s Auggie. Dr. Laub’s work doesn’t just alter his patients’ physical appearance, but helps to improve their emotional well-being and quality of life, too. Read Picard’s article on page 34. We’ve packed the pages with lots more diverse content, sure to satisfy the omnivorous reader. On page 30, read “Live-In in America,” my story on Vermont families who employ foreign live-in babysitters known as au pairs — a childcare arrangement that’s, surprisingly, financially comparable to putting two children in full-time daycare. Check out what VPR’s “Morning Edition” host Mitch Wertlieb and his wife, Erin, have to say about parenting in “Balancing Act” on page 22. Learn about indoor skating at Stowe Arena on page 15 and how to make your own board games on page 23. As we ring in a new year, I’m also pleased to introduce a new member of our staff. Mary Ann Lickteig, who’s worked for us as a freelance writer for several years, joins Kids VT as the contributing editor. Lickteig has worked as a reporter at the Burlington Free Press, the Des Moines Register and the Associated Press. She’s also raising four children, ranging in age from 12 to 16. We’re fortunate to have her on our team! ALISON NOVAK, MANAGING EDITOR

My wish list this year is QUIET TIME ON THE COUCH with my hand-knit angora and wool blanket, next to the tree and the woodstove, with a really great book and a box of chocolates. Lots of pets and avid-reader family members are also welcome. KIRSTEN CHENEY, DESIGNER

I want FIESTAWARE! That’s how you know you’re an adult — when you want new plates for Christmas. COREY GRENIER, MARKETING AND EVENTS DIRECTOR

FEWER TEXTS AND MORE ACTUAL CONVERSATIONS with people I love. CATHY RESMER, EXECUTIVE EDITOR

I want to go SNOWSHOEING AT TRAPP FAMILY LODGE with a cozy lunch break at Slayton Pasture Cabin. How have I lived in Vermont for 12 years and never done this?! CAROLYN FOX, PROOFREADER

A MATCH FOR EVERY SOCK! MARY ANN LICKTEIG, CONTRIBUTING EDITOR

CONTRIBUTOR’S NOTE LIZ MAYS HARRIS (“Love Like Mary,” page 51) is an artist and co-owner of the HiVE, an artist collective in Middlesex. She works full-time at True North Wilderness Program in Waitsfield, a residential treatment program for adolescents and young adults, and is an avid skier and ski coach. She lives in Moretown with her husband and children.

KIDS VT

Editorial content in Kids VT is for general informational purposes. Parents must use their own discretion for following the advice in any editorial piece. Acceptance of advertising does not constitute service/product endorsement. Kids VT is a proud member of the Parenting Media Association. Kids VT distribution is audited for accuracy. Da Capo Publishing shall not be held liable to any advertiser for any loss that results from the incorrect publication of its advertisement. If a mistake is ours, and the advertising purpose has been rendered valueless, Da Capo Publishing may cancel the charges for the advertisement, or a portion thereof as deemed reasonable by the publisher. Da Capo Publishing reserves the right to refuse any advertising, including inserts, at the discretion of the publishers.

A Sense of Wonder

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

P.O. BOX 1184 • BURLINGTON, VT 05402 802-985-5482 • KIDSVT.COM

What’s on your wish list this year?

KIDSVT.COM

Janet Essman Franz, Liz Mays Harris, Astrid Hedbor Lague, Ken Picard, Erinn Simon, Autumn Spencer, Sarah Stewart Taylor, Jessica Lara Ticktin

STAFF QUESTION

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at the flynn

Season Sponsor

A gift for the kids. A Vermont tax credit for you.

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Give the gift of future education with the Vermont 529 college savings plan.

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DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018 KIDSVT.COM KIDS VT

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SAVING F O R COL LE GE

Students with even a small amount of savings are three times more likely to go on to college or training after high school. Vermont’s state-sponsored 529 college savings program makes it easy to get started. You can open an account with just $25 or contribute any amount to a friend’s or family’s account. Plus, the Vermont Higher Education Investment plan is the only college savings plan that qualifies for a 10% Vermont income tax credit on annual contributions.

workshops for families

Give a gift by December 31 to get a VT tax credit for 2017!

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Open or add to an account at:

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www.flynncenter.org P E R F O R M I N G

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Administered by

VHEIP is sponsored by the Vermont Student Assistance Corporation, a public nonprofit established by the Vermont Legislature in 1965 to help Vermont students and families save, plan, and pay for college. Before investing please read the disclosure booklet carefully (available online at www.vheip.org or by calling 800-637-5860).

A R T S

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DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018 COURTESY OF BECCA CORNEAU

Your Cheese & Wine Place We find the deals, you get the savings

Just for Kids 25 Holiday Maze 26 Writing Contest

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Live-In in America

27 28

Vermont families say foreign au pairs offer childcare that’s flexible — and surprisingly affordable

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& Winners Coloring Contest Winners Coloring Contest Puzzle Page Birthday Club Puzzle Answers

CALENDAR DEC/JAN

Short Stuff Autumn Answers 8

KIDSVT.COM DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

SAT

JAN 13

SUN

JAN 28

‘The Gift’: Graceful gliders sail across the ice, performing holiday-themed acts during this seasonal revue. 3-5 p.m., Leddy Park Arena, Burlington. Winter Wildlife Celebration: Nature enthusiasts explore exhibits and wintery trails with interactive guided tours and talks in the morning. Indoor and outdoor games, crafts, and a campfire with treats fill the afternoon. 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Vermont Institute of Natural Sciences, Quechee. Ice Fishing Festival: Aspiring anglers learn the basics of this winter sport with expert volunteers. A free fish fry, snacks, hot drinks and a warming hut keep the day toasty. 11 a.m.-3 p.m., Hoyts Landing, Springfield.

Like the University of Vermont Medical Center on Facebook and get weekly updates from Dr. First! See “First With Kids” videos at uvmhealth.org.

Calendar 36 Daily Listings 37 Holiday Happenings 38 Classes 40 Science & Nature 42 New Parents 44 Ongoing Exhibits 46 Story Times 48 Live Performances 50 Playgroups

For teachers, care-takers, friends & someone special “NEW NAME AND LOOK, SAME GREAT PRICES AS ALWAYS!”

DISCOUNTS ON NATURAL, GLUTEN-FREE AND KID-FRIENDLY FOODS

On the Cover DECEMBER 2017 / JANUARY 2018 DOUBLE

FREE

VOL.24 NO.11/12

ISSUE

Au Pairs to the

Rescue Live-in caregivers from abroad offer an alternative to daycare BY ALISON NOVAK, PAGE 30

BROUGHT TO YOU BY

Real-Life Wonders

House in the Trees

Skating in Stowe

DIY Board Games

Au pairs float down from the sky to families in Vermont — à la Mary Poppins — in this playful illustration by Sean Metcalf.

1186 Williston Rd., So. Burlington, VT 05403 (Next to the Alpine Shop) 802.863.0143 www.cheesetraders.com Open 7 days 10am-7pm

KIDS VT

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Calendar Clues Kids Say What? Trending Parent Participation Throwback #InstaKidsVT

DEC 16

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

Staff Question Contributor’s Note

Columns 11 Kids Beat 13 Parent Portrait 15 Destination Recreation 17 Habitat 18 Ones to Watch 21 Mealtime 22 Balancing Act 23 The Art of 51 Use Your Words

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Week to Week SAT

This New Year’s Eve, FIRST NIGHT BURLINGTON partners with Burlington City Arts to present a fresh take on the annual all-ages celebration. Perennial favorites — including Circus Smirkus, the Dancing Dragons Parade and a 10-hour Cartoon Fest at Merrill’s Roxy Cinemas — remain. New additions include a Shiver Shiver Shake music and light show (inspired by Montréal’s Igloofest) with DJ Lee on the Church Street Marketplace and contemporary musical acts at the Flynn Center MainStage, such as Myra Flynn at 7 p.m. Buy buttons and tickets in advance at firstnightburlington.org. Sunday, December 31, 11 a.m.-midnight, downtown Burlington.

KIDSVT.COM

Welcome Editor’s Note 5

KIDS VT

COURTEST OF DR. LAUB

Vermont’s only pediatric plastic surgeon gives new smiles to kids born with craniofacial differences

COURTESY OF STEPHEN MEASE PHOTOGRAPHY

Working Wonders

SPONSORED BY:

Festive F un!

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GIFT BASKETS Cheese, wine, sweets

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AUTUMN ANSWERS

Should I make my kids write thank-you notes?

KIDS VT

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

KIDSVT.COM

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f ever you’ve tried to get a child to sit down and write a thank-you note, you know it’s a lot like pulling a wheelbarrow full of baby monkeys uphill through mud. I have no idea why it’s so hard. I’m honestly not convinced that children aren’t born with a natural aversion to this particular task and an innate sense that if they complain long enough about having to do it, you’ll give in, out of utter exhaustion, and let them off the hook. Monkeys aside, the answer to the question is: Yes! You absolutely should make your kids write thankyou notes. It’s good manners. It’s good practice. It’s a lost art. But more than any of that, writing thank-you notes is an expression of gratitude, and expressing gratitude is a crucial element in our overall health and well-being. Robert A. Emmons, professor of psychology at the University of California and leading expert in the science of gratitude, explains that gratitude can “lower blood pressure, improve immune function and facilitate more efficient sleep. Gratitude reduces lifetime risk for

depression, anxiety and substance abuse disorders and is a key resiliency factor in the prevention of suicide.” Specifically, Emmons’ research reveals that “children who practice grateful thinking have more positive attitudes toward school and their families.” Basically, it’s good for our health to write thank-you notes. But how do we get our kids to actually do it? Real Simple offers several helpful tips for engaging even the littlest note-writers. My favorite is “teach sincerity” because “you want your kids to learn to be authentically gracious.” Sincerity means that kids don’t have to

Calendar Clues Saturday, December 2-Friday, December 22:

GINGERBREAD HOUSE COMPETITION & EXHIBIT, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Vermont

Folklife Center, Middlebury. Closed Sundays and Mondays.

Monday, January 15: MARTIN LUTHER KING JR. 10 a.m.-5 p.m., ECHO Leahy Center for Lake Champlain, Burlington. DAY CELEBRATION,

Wednesday, January 31, FULL MOON SNOWSHOE HIKE, 7-8:30 p.m., North Branch Nature Center, Montpelier.

pretend a gift is beautiful if it’s not, and they don’t have to say they love a thing if they don’t. Encourage them to be honest but kind. Something like, “Thank you for taking the time to pick this gift out for me” is more sincere than “Wool turtlenecks are my absolute favorite!” Other tips include taking time to write the notes together, making yourself the “designated writer” (especially when the kids are young) and making sure you have the appropriate supplies: notes, stamps, addresses, pens and snacks (of course). Like anything worth doing, experiencing and expressing gratitude is a practice. It’s a muscle we have to exercise and train. Teaching our children to recognize the people, moments and gifts that enrich their lives and guiding them in articulately expressing their thanks is, in itself, the gift of a lifetime.  In this monthly column, comedian, writer and mom Autumn Spencer answers tricky parenting questions. Have a question for Autumn? Send it to ideas@kidsvt.com.

KIDS SAY WHAT?

“I want to be highly intelligent when I get older.” —PARKER, AGE 7

TRENDING Twelve-year-old brothers Owen and Lucas Marchessault win competition to design new flag for Burlington. Need a graphic design job, guys?

A slew of new babyfood startups offer organic, cold-pressed and chemicalfree food for tots. Or you can just give little Suzy a squeezie applesauce and call it a day. Tiffany & Co. jewelry store launches an Everyday Objects line, including a sterling silver tin-can baby bank for a thousand bucks. Perfect for the little tyke who has everything.

Vermont Public Interest Research Group releases annual list of toxic toys, including fidget spinners with dangerously high levels of lead. We thought those things were just annoying. Barbie backs marriage equality on the doll’s official Instagram account, wearing a shirt that says, “Love Wins.” Style and substance. Who knew? New study finds that E. coli bacterium thrives in uncooked flour dishes like cake batter and cookie dough. Put down the whisk, and nobody gets hurt.


PARENT PARTICIPATION We asked parents to share the gifts on their kids’ wish lists this holiday season. Find their comments below. An electric dirt bike. —ANGIE FERENC

My 3-year-old would like Santa to bring him some blueberries. —EMILY GRIMES

A marble run! —KAREN STRIKE HUDSON

My almost 6-year-old wants a pogo stick. My almost 12-year-old daughter hasn’t asked for anything quite as exciting. She wants sweatpants and athletic slides. —SHANNON REDMOND

My 6-year-old daughter’s one wish is a ride on a unicorn with a horn that lights up. —HONI BEAN BARRETT

My two boys really want a metal detector detector! They think they’ll find valuable treasure. My daughter wants a new baby doll since our dog chewed up her favorite one.

PET CORNER

My daughter would like Santa to bring her a little sister. No matter sister how many times I tell her it doesn’t work like that, she keeps mentioning it. —KIM MEILLEUR

And one recommendation for a thoughtful birthday party gift... Since our kids have plenty of toys, we ask birthday party guests to bring a brand-new book to donate to the Children’s Literacy Foundation. Kids can pick out their favorite book and know it will go to someone who will treasure it. —JULIA ROGERS

—HOLLY BECKERT

THROWBACK

1.

2.

Sleep Savior: A Local Mom Uses Research to Help Babies and Parents Rest Easy, September 2017

4. Living Small: A Winter

Update, February 2017

5. Positive Pressure:

LeVar Barrino Is the Boys & Girls Club’s Go-To Guy for Helping Kids Shine, May 2017

3. Team Player:

Read these stories and more at kidsvt.com.

Thanks for sharing your family photos with us using the hashtag #instakidsvt. We loved this picture showing a young explorer of nature in action. Share a picture of your kids bundled up for winter in December or January. HERE’S HOW:



Follow @kids_vt on Instagram.



Post your photos on Instagram with the hashtag #instakidsvt. We’ll select a photo to feature in the next issue.

mushroomforager This woodland wanderer was delighted to find a birch polypore hidden under this fallen birch.

KIDS VT

In Sports and in Life, a St. Albans Teen Supports Inclusion Inclusion, February 2017

#INSTAKIDSVT

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

Bringing ringing Home (Another) Baby: Six Months In, a Mom Reflects on Double-Duty Parenting, May 2017

KIDSVT.COM

Top 5 Articles of 2017

Amber Renshaw shared this adorable snapshot of her daughter Juniper, age 5, with puppy Hazel, 5 months. “Growing too fast!” Renshaw wrote.

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RECREATION BY MARY ANN LICKTEIG AND A LISON NOVAK

Chills & Thrills When the Pump House indoor water park opened at Jay Peak Resort in December 2011, Vermonters gained a fun new spot to let off some steam during the winter months. Six years later, the northern Vermont ski resort is adding another familyfocused facility to its entertainment options. CLIPS & REELS RECREATIONAL CENTER — a 15,000-square-foot space offering climbing walls, a movie theater and an arcade — opens the week of December 18. Located across from the resort’s Stateside Hotel and Baselodge, it will boast 13 auto-belayed climbing stations, as well as three traditional climbing walls and a horizontal ropes course, according to JJ Toland, the resort’s director of communications, events and partnerships. Visitors can watch second-run movies in the 142-seat movie theater, including family classics from years past and seasonal films like Elf and Miracle on 34th Street. Gamers can play virtual basketball, bowling and other two-player video games in the new arcade. For those looking to grab a bite, an on-site snack bar will offer up noodle bowls, tacos and more — plus soft drinks and adult libations. —AN For more information, visit jaypeakresort.com/clipsreels. The climbing gym will cost $15 an hour for kids 14 and under and $20 an hour for kids 15 and up. Toland recommends booking online in advance. Movies will cost $3 for kids 14 and under and $5 for adults. The new facility will be open to the public, in addition to resort guests.

TELEVISION

Farm-Fresh Entertainment

Wrap It Up

KIDS VT

Order Vermont State Parks gifts online at vtstateparks.com.

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

Searching for a perfect holiday present? How about the great outdoors? VERMONT STATE PARKS is selling park passes, gift certificates, hoodies, mugs and more. Shoppers can select individual items or choose one of three gift packages. Each includes park admittance and a selection of goodies. The Day Tripper sells for $59 and contains a punch card good for 10 park day trips, a pen and notebook set, and a Vermont State Parks travel mug. The Weekend Getaway, $89, includes two nights of camping, a coupon for an armload of firewood, two water bottles and a mini flashlight. And the $139 Full Season of Family Fun provides a one-season vehicle pass good for entry into all of Vermont’s 55 parks, two coupons for a one-hour boat rental, an insulated backpack, a deck of cards and a frisbee. The latter, says State Parks sales and service manager Rochelle Skinner, is like giving “a whole summer of things to do.” Packages ship for free and arrive wrapped — in recycled paper, of course. Proceeds benefit the parks. And recipients get more than a walk in the woods, the State Parks press release says. Studies show that spending time outdoors reduces stress and increases feelings of well-being. —MAL

KIDSVT.COM

Thanks to a Kickstarter campaign that raised nearly $30,000, Vermont PBS has released the pilot of “MISTER CHRIS AND FRIENDS,” an original children’s television program featuring local musician Chris Dorman, founder of Music for Sprouts family music classes at Bread & Butter Farm in Shelburne. The inaugural episode premiered November 20 and is now available for streaming. The show, targeted to the preschool set, follows a three-act structure, said Dorman. It starts in the barn studio with a wish to learn something and a musical wishing well that offers a clue to the lesson. In the pilot, Dorman wishes to learn how apple blossoms turn into apples, and the clue is honeybees. In the second act, Dorman and friends embark on an adventure, which Dorman describes as the “opportunity Stream “Mister to be brave and explore the beauty of the world around us.” Chris and Friends” Act three features a live barn concert with Mister Chris and at vermontpbs.org. Friends, featuring local families in the audience. Special guests in the inaugural episode include singer Kat Wright, dancers from the Farm to Ballet Project and Shelburne Orchards owner Nick Cowles, giving the program a decidedly Vermont flavor. Those who can’t get enough of Dorman’s catchy tunes and sweet delivery are in luck. More episodes are in the works for 2018. —AN

GIFT IDEAS

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New Year. New Smile

ORTHODONTICS

DRS. DRS.PETERSON, PETERSON,RYAN RYAN & & EATON EATON

Whether you’re considering clear aligners, retainers or today’s braces, an orthodontist is the smart choice. Orthodontists are specialists in straightening teeth and aligning your bite. They have two to three years of education beyond dental school. So they’re experts at helping you get a great smile—that feels great, too.

Braces for Children & Adults — champlainortho.net ST. ALBANS OFFICE 80 Mapleville Depot 527-7100

WILLISTON OFFICE 277 Blair Park Road 878-5323

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DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018 KIDSVT.COM

Braces for Children and Adults Outstanding Academics • Inspired Learning Burlington Williston St. Albans 862-6721 878-5323 527-7100 www.champlainortho.net

• Project-based Learning • Individual Learning Goals • Literacy & Math • STEM • Global Studies • Digital Literacy • Art • Music • Spanish • PE

Join us for Upcoming Events Winter Open House • February 11 @ 3 p.m. Kindergarten Visiting Morning • January 18, February 15

KIDS VT

(Pre-registration required)

Visit our website vtdayschool.org for more information. Email: info@vtdayschool.org. Phone: 495-5150 • 6701 Shelburne Road, Shelburne

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PARENT PORTRAIT

P HOTO BY SA M SIMON I NT E RV I EW BY ERINN S I M ON

Rebecca Rey, 46, with daughter Mykenzie, 13

KIDS VT

Want to be featured in an upcoming Parent Portrait? Email us at ideas@kidsvt.com.

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

What’s the best road trip you’ve taken together? Rebecca: We went to D.C. for the Women’s March. I drove Myk and a friend to meet up with some other friends. Mykenzie: That was the best one we’ve taken because it had a real purpose. It wasn’t just a regular trip. Rebecca: Amazingly enough — you know how big [the march] was — we ran into Vermonters, people we actually know from town! And it was cool that it was such a positive vibe. Mykenzie: The streets were completely flooded with people, and we were talking with everyone around us, even if we didn’t know each other. It was like we were all just friends. It was just really fun to be together there.

KIDSVT.COM

Rebecca & Mykenzie

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The Vermont Cub Project Vermont Teddy Bears are more than fur & stuffing. Everyday we see Bears come to life in the arms of children, and we knew we needed to share this love with our fellow Vermonters. This is why we created The Vermont Cub Project.

802-448-0404

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DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018 KIDSVT.COM

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DESTINATION RECREATION BY J A N E T E S S M AN FR AN Z

Stowe Arena 350 Park Street, Stowe

T

he first snowfall of the season always gets my family fired up for winter sports. When winter’s in full swing, we’re avid downhill skiers. But on a November Sunday – with just a dusting of powder on the ground — indoor ice-skating was the perfect cold-weather activity for me and my 9-year-old son, Zac. I browsed local indoor skating rinks online and noticed that ice times fluctuate from day to day. Stowe Arena had a window of time for public skating that worked for us. I called to verify the online schedule before we headed out. The indoor arena, adjacent to Stowe Elementary School and the town library, is housed in a complex with other recreational facilities, including an outdoor basketball court, baseball field and playground.

DETAILS

Janet Franz with son Zac

MORE SPOTS TO SKATE: •

Gordon H. Paquette Ice Arena at Leddy Park in Burlington’s New North End offers public skating lessons. Leddy also offers drop-in Itty Bitty Skating for preschoolers on Mondays and Thursdays from 10-11:30 a.m. through March 29 for $8 per family.

Cairns Arena in South Burlington has public skating most days of the week through March.

Essex Skating Facility in Essex Junction offers public rink times as posted on its online calendar.

B.O.R. Ice Arena in Barre offers numerous public skating opportunities on weekend afternoons and several weekday evenings.

selfies. As we left, we noticed kids with sticks and pucks eagerly waiting to get on the ice. Après-skate, Zac and I shared a bag

Highgate Sports Arena offers public skating every Sunday from 2:30 p.m. to 4:15 p.m. through March 20.

Fenton W. Chester Arena in Lyndon Center has Wednesday and Sunday open skate times through March.

Memorial Sports Center in Middlebury offers free skating sessions for children 5 and under.

Central Vermont Memorial Civic Center in Montpelier hosts several public skating times in January and February.

Castleton College’s Spartan Arena in Rutland offers a handful of dates for public skating in December and January.

of popcorn from the snack bar and watched the Zamboni resurface the ice, turning rough tracks into a gleaming, smooth surface once again. K

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Stowe Arena hosts public skating most days, but times vary. Check the arena’s website (stowerec. org) for an updated schedule or call 802-253-6148. Dress in layers and wear thermal socks and gloves. Bring your own helmet or rent one for $2 at the arena. The snack bar offers sandwiches, fries, cookies and beverages. On Saturday, December 16, from 12:15 to 2:15 p.m., kids can skate with Santa Claus and enjoy hot cocoa and candy canes for the same price as regular public skating.

We paid $20 total for our entry fee and skate rentals, then headed into the rink. Public skating times are often brief, sandwiched between hockey sessions. Because we arrived after the start time of this session, we had just an hour to play on the ice. The rental skates were well worn, but sharp enough for amateur gliding. We laced up and waddled onto the ice. About 20 people circumnavigated the rink, including toddlers, schoolaged children, teens and adults. Piped-in classic rock provided a rhythmic soundtrack. I’ve skated only a handful of times in the past few years, so I was a bit unsteady on my blades at first. But it didn’t take long for my muscle memory from childhood figureskating lessons to kick in. Zac was hesitant, so I grabbed a milk crate from the stack outside the rink to help him balance. Before long, he felt confident enough to ditch the crate in favor of the railing on the rink’s outer wall, shuffling along as I coached and encouraged him. He soon let go of the railing completely and skated away from the wall. It was a giant leap from our first skating experience when Zac was 6 and had to skate holding onto a chair and fell repeatedly. A few years had made a world of difference. By the time the staff announced that public skating was over, we were both making small circles in the center of the rink, laughing and taking

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HABITAT BY BRETT S TA N CI U

Diminutive Dwelling S

Rob Alcusky and Sally Anstey

Gabriela Stanciu explores from the treehouse

MATERIALS

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018 KIDS VT

• Some of the wood, including the pressure-treated foundation joists, was salvaged from local sources. • The French doors and back door, which was added as an easier entry point for less agile adults, came from a garage sale. Nailed beside the back door is a hand grip purchased from local blacksmith Lucian Avery. • Leftover red tin from Rob’s shop provided roofing. • Sally gleaned the windows from a discard pile she spied on her morning commute. • Cherry wood posts lining the path to the treehouse were snapped up at a local yard sale. • The fish-scale cement siding, purchased new, was a splurge. • Yet to be nailed down: hand-carved crown molding — from friends who bought an East Hardwick house and discovered the treasure beneath their chicken coop.

KIDSVT.COM

“Habitat” celebrates places where Vermont families live and play. Got a sweet space you’d like us to see? Email us at ideas@ kidsvt.com. PHOTOS: MOLLY STANCIU

ally Anstey and Rob Alcusky’s quirky, magical treehouse – poised between two hemlocks and a maple – is clearly not a rushed weekend project. Long envisioned by Sally as a “little private retreat” in their Hardwick village home’s backyard, the project has been nearly 20 years in the making. When their granddaughter was born six years ago, the small space evolved into a children’s hideaway. Built on a steep hillside, the treehouse rests partly on granite. Rob, a woodworker by trade, anchored the suspended end between trees, with one hemlock surrounded by a deck. Sally hired a carpenter to frame the almost 100-square-foot building. The couple did the rest of the work and “had a lot of luck” sourcing salvaged materials, Sally said. A sleeping loft — accessible by a homemade ladder — spans one end of the light-filled space. A child-sized kitchen is tucked under it. French doors swing open to the deck, surrounded by green-needled branches, creating a Swiss Family Robinson vibe. With satisfaction, Sally described the day when the treehouse was officially gifted to their granddaughter, Hazel, who was around 4 at the time. “We told her this space was hers, and she could do what she wanted. How often does that happen to a child?” The little girl “embraced” the space, Sally said, and directed furniture placement with her small hands on her hips. When Hazel isn’t visiting from her home in Massachusetts, Rob and Sally enjoy unwinding from work there and swapping their days’ stories. The haven is just a few steps from their home but captures the faraway feel Sally desired. The structure isn’t done yet, Sally insisted, describing the patterned linoleum she imagines covering the plywood floor. Perhaps what’s most charming about this little dwelling in the trees is its organic evolution — sprouting from the shared vision of two loving grandparents, nourished by fortunate finds and enjoyed by multiple generations. K

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ONES TO WATCH COMPILED BY A L IS ON N OVA K • P H OTOS B Y J A M MES ES B U C K

Rising Stars

The performers of the Spectacular Spectacular talent show

B

ack in 2014, Kids VT marketing and events director Corey Grenier proposed an idea. Grenier, who grew up participating in dance recitals and talent shows in Rhode Island, thought it would be fun to give talented Vermont kids the opportunity to perform in front of a large audience on the Higher Ground stage. The rest, as they say, is history. On Saturday, December 9, Kids VT presents our fourth annual Spectacular Spectacular talent show in the Higher Ground Ballroom. Through the years, we’ve loved seeing repeat performers — like rock-and-rollers Carter and Brody McGuire, who first took the stage at ages 5 and 6, and are back for a fourth consecutive year, this time with younger brother, Liam, and their friend, Marianna Webb. And we’re always eager to see the new singers, dancers, musicians and other hopefuls who show up for tryouts every November. This year, we’re thrilled to have professional Masters of Ceremony Enoch and Woodhead hosting the show for the first time ever. Here are six of the 20 acts taking the stage. We think you’ll agree that their star power is undeniable.

Sydney Benjamin, 12, Waterbury Doing gymnastics to “Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy” by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky and “Turn Down for What” by DJ Snake and Lil Jon Who inspires you? Gymnast Laurie Hernandez Favorite food? Noodles

Favorite TV show? “Glee” Favorite hobbies? Doodling and crafting

KIDS VT

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

KIDSVT.COM

Visit kidsvt.com/ spectacularspectacula for a link to buy tickets for this year’s show!

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Brody McGuire, 10; Carter McGuire, 9; Liam McGuire, 8, Vergennes; and Marianna Webb, 10, Waltham Singing and playing guitar, drums and keyboard to “Fooled Around and Fell in Love” by Elvin Bishop Who inspires you? Brody: My mom and dad Carter: Other kid bands Liam: Jacques Cousteau Marianna: My mom Favorite performer? Brody: Myself Carter: Angus Young Liam: Dave Grohl Marianna: Jake Paul

Favorite food? Brody: Everything except baked ziti Carter: French fries Liam: Buffalo wings Marianna: Ice cream


Sleeping Beauty

Cristo Buckley, 11, Manchester Singing “Wrecking Ball” by Miley Cyrus What makes you laugh? “Try not to laugh” videos

Hobbies? Singing, tennis and skiing

Favorite TV show? “The Voice” Who inspires you? Kelly Clarkson, Andra Day and Alicia Keys

Andre Redmond, 5, Burlington Singing “I Want You Back” by the Jackson 5 Who inspires you? My family

Favorite movie? Happy Feet

What makes you laugh? Clowns

Favorite place in Vermont? Jay Peak

State Ballet Theatre of Russia

Saturday, January 27, 7pm Sophie Frost, 9, and Addie Baker, 9, Hinesburg Singing “Stereo Hearts” by Gym Class Heroes Favorite place in Vermont? Sophie: Al’s French Frys Addie: Lake Morey

KIDSVT.COM

What makes you laugh? Sophie: Addie Addie: Sophie

Fifty dancers gloriously bring this timeless fairy tale to life. Fun for the whole family!

Faith Holzhammer, 13; Joy Holzhammer, 13; Jeremy Holzhammer, 9, Orwell Singing and playing guitar and drums to a Beatles mashup Favorite food? Faith and Jeremy: Tacos Joy: Cheesecake Favorite performer? Faith: Led Zeppelin Joy: David Bowie Jeremy: Josh Dun from Twenty One Pilots

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What makes you laugh? Faith: My brother Joy: My brother’s self-styling hair Jeremy: Dr. Who

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What do you want to be when you grow up? Sophie: Scientist Addie: Marine biologist/ astronomer

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MEALTIME BY A ST RI D H E D BOR L A GUE

Moroccan Leg of Lamb T

he chill of winter has us in its grasp here in Vermont. But comfort food, infused with spices from a warmer climate, can transport us to faraway lands, at least in our minds. Leg of lamb is an impressive dish, fit for a celebration or a feast to share with friends. When I think of the luscious and aromatic meat, my mind immediately goes to Morocco. Though I haven’t traveled there myself, my parents once did. My mom remembers sipping traditional Moroccan mint tea while wandering through a rug market and visiting the nearby food stalls and spice shops. The aroma of exotic sweets and

Spice blend

INGREDIENTS:

DIRECTIONS

• 1 boneless leg of lamb (mine was around 4 lbs) • 2 tablespoons olive oil • 2 tablespoons honey (Use a floral one that’s not too heavy in flavor, such as eucalyptus or mesquite. I prefer Turkish honey.) • 4 tablespoons lemon juice • You will also need cooking twine and a meat thermometer.

1.

2.

For the spice blend: 3.

4.

5.

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018 KIDS VT

• 4 cloves garlic • 2 teaspoons dried coriander • 2 teaspoons cumin • 2 teaspoons chili powder • 1 teaspoon paprika • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric • 2 tablespoons salt • 1 tablespoon black pepper • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves • 1/4 teaspoon allspice • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom

Remove the netting from the lamb (if it has one) and spread the leg out flat. Dry the surface of the meat with a paper towel so that the spice blend can really stick. With a sharp knife, lightly score the fatty areas of the lamb in a crisscross pattern, but do not trim off the fat. For the most part, it will cook off, and it adds tremendous flavor. Combine three-quarters of the spice mixture with the olive oil, lemon and honey, so that it forms a paste. Rub this mixture liberally on all sides of the lamb. Roll the leg into a round and secure with cooking twine. Allow to marinate for several hours, or overnight, in the refrigerator. Before it is time to cook, allow the meat to come to room temperature by letting it sit outside of the refrigerator for about 45 minutes. This will help ensure even cooking. Turn the oven to broil and sear the outside of the lamb by broiling for five minutes on each side. Lower the oven temperature to 325 degrees and roast for about 20 minutes per pound, or until the internal temperature of the meat is 130 degrees. It is very important to check the temperature with a meat thermometer, as cooking times may vary, and you do not want the lamb under- or overcooked. Allow the roast to rest for five to 10 minutes before slicing against the grain and serving. Pass the reserved spice blend around the table for sprinkling. Enjoy!

KIDSVT.COM

tantalizing spices hung in the air of the narrow, twisting streets. She and my father made sure to sample the local cuisine, and this lamb dish is reminiscent of something they had there. My mother and I cooked this meal together, and she said the smell of the lamb and spices transported her back to that Moroccan market. In researching different lamb preparations, I found many recipes for pure street food. One was for a pulled leg of lamb, called mechoui. Others

called for skewering chunks of lamb to make kebabs. I decided to go a fancier route, roasting the lamb to a beautiful and tender medium rare. I created a meat rub with a blend of spices typical in the Middle East and North Africa and infused it with lemon and honey to round out the flavor. The lamb itself was relatively easy to cook. The process takes a while, but most of that time is spent waiting for the meat to marinate. Scoring the lamb along the fat with a knife helps allow the spices to really permeate the meat. When marination is complete, the lamb is seared on all sides, then roasted at a low temperature until medium rare. A meat thermometer is really critical here; the lamb is done when it is 130 degrees in the center. For a finishing touch, pass spices at the table – the same combination used in the rub – to sprinkle on the sliced lamb. I served this dish with flatbread; couscous with golden raisins, almonds and spices; roasted chickpeas; and honey-roasted, spiced rainbow carrots sprinkled with a North African spice blend called ras el hanout. For a local option, look for a ras el hanout blend from Teeny Tiny Spice Company, founded by a Vermont family. You can also find it at ethnic markets, such as Nadia International Market in Winooski, or online. We sprinkled it on the flatbread and couscous in addition to the carrots. All of our dinner guests — from my sometimes-picky 11-year-old son to my 71-year-old mother — adored this meal. The leftovers made for a delicious lunch the next day, and the meat was even wonderful right out of the fridge. I hope this dish brings warmth and a celebratory spirit to your family’s table this winter! K

PHOTOS: ANDY BRUMBAUGH

A flavorful roast worthy of celebration

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ER V O ISC

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Tuned In

MATTHEW THORSEN

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U YO L IL

BALANCING ACT B Y J ESS IC A L AR A T IC K T IN

A radio family on splitting shifts, turning in early and being recognized

A

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fire blazes in the Wertliebs’ South Burlington living room as 9-year-old Gretchen plays dominoes on the wood floor and 6-month-old puppy Fezzik cavorts nearby. The family has already eaten and cleaned up dinner. Although it’s only 6:30 p.m., Gretchen will soon begin her bedtime routine — bath, teeth-brushing and a half-hour of independent reading — before one of her parents, mom Erin or dad Mitch, tucks her in. Not long after that, the grown-ups will head to bed, too. For the past 15 years, Mitch has been the host of Vermont Public Radio’s “Morning Edition,” which airs on weekdays from 6 to 9 a.m. He starts his day around 4 a.m. Erin stayed home with Gretchen when she was younger, then volunteered and worked at her school for several years. Her current 8:30 a.m.- to4:30 p.m. job in the University of Vermont’s Department of Education means she’s able to cover the morning shift at home with Gretchen. Mitch gets home by midday for the after-school shift, making for a well-balanced arrangement. On the role of radio: Erin: Yes, we have it on, but I do turn it off once we sit down for breakfast, since you never know what’s going to be on there these days! I listen to it all the time, and I did – even before I met Mitch. I have it on early in the morning, before Gretchen gets up, and then soon after [she awakes], I turn it off. Mitch: I talk about [Gretchen] on the air when I probably shouldn’t. She’ll just come up at times, and every year on her birthday I say, “Happy Birthday, Gretchen!” and I play “My Girl,” and it’s really nice. Gretchen: You do? Mitch: You never hear it? On family traditions: Erin: Part of our family tradition is the birthday interview. (It’s not aired.)

Dad: Mitch Wertlieb, 51, “Morning Edition” host, Vermont Public Radio Mom: Erin Wertlieb, 44, program assistant, University of Vermont Department of Education Daughter: Gretchen, 9 Mitch: The first time I took [Gretchen] into the studio, she must have been 2 or 3, and you just hear her talking about the buttons. I thought it would be cool to do it every year and have that time-lapse progression over the years, and now it’s become our tradition. Erin: It is such a part of our family now. Gretchen: We still haven’t done my 9-year-old interview! On pet responsibilities: Erin: He gets home at about 12:30 or so and always takes the dog out. Mitch: It’s so nice that I get daylight in the wintertime! For so many people, you get up in the dark and come home in the dark. I love having that afternoon walk with the dog. He’s a puppy. He needs to get tired out. On dinner prep: Mitch: If I was a better cook, I would do it. Although I do my famous omelettes from time to time. Gretchen: I love the famous omelettes! Mitch: Wednesday night is usually the night I do omelettes and [tater] tots. In the summer, I grill a lot. When Erin is on a girls’ night out, we will have mac and cheese. I am not a great cook, but I do help clean up!

On being a parent and a journalist: Mitch: If I am interviewing somebody, and before we actually talk about something, we will talk about kids and start to have this rapport. “Oh, how old is your daughter? How old is your son?” It’s amazing how you can relate to people that way. It feels good. I find that it actually helps with my job. It gets people to loosen up a little bit and speak to me like a regular person before we start an official interview. On being approached by radio fans: Mitch: It really doesn’t happen very often. Erin: I should probably answer this one because he is going to do the whole modesty thing. Mitch: It doesn’t happen very much. Erin: It does happen. It doesn’t happen every day, but it happens! More frequently than he’s letting on. He is always very gracious. Mitch: If it does happen, I thank them for listening, and it makes me feel good. It would definitely bother me more if I was on television. I wouldn’t want that kind of exposure. Occasionally, someone recognizes my voice or my name and it’s just at the level I like it! Erin: People comment to me about the sports report and say, “I sure liked Mitch’s report on the Yankees!” Sometimes [Gretchen’s] teacher or the staff at her school will be like, “Oh yeah, I listened to your dad this morning.” K Know parents we should interview? Email us at ideas@kidsvt.com.


YLOR EWART TA SARAH ST URTESY OF PHOTOS CO

THE ART OF B Y SARA H ST EWART TAY L OR

Board Game Creation

M

y kids have always loved making up games. When they were toddlers, they would create elaborate ones with rules that were inexplicable at best and Kafkaesque at worst. I loved seeing their minds working, trying to figure out how to write the rules so they’d have the upper hand. I’ve always thought that making up game rules must be a child’s way of assuming some control and power in a world where adults usually call the shots. As they got older, my kids fell in love with board games. First came the Candy Land years, and the years they wanted to play endless games of Monopoly — before they could count money. Then we moved on to games the adults in the house actually wanted to play: Settlers of

TRY THIS AT HOME

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boards. They only partially followed this advice. But their mistakes were incorporated into the final designs of their games. When they finished, we had a family game night, fortified with lots of popcorn, to try out the games. This gave the kids a chance to figure out on-the-spot tweaks to make their games more enjoyable and interesting. From start to finish, the process involved some of the most active learning I’ve ever seen my kids engage in — encompassing reading, writing, art, engineering and rulemaking. Even their 12-year-old brother — who was too wrapped up in his own activities to make a game — declared Diamonds or Demons? and Household Battles fun to play. That’s what I call a win-win. K

KIDSVT.COM

I ordered blank game boards, blank playing cards, dice and pawns from Amazon, but you can also special-order these materials from officesupply and local game shops. Or make your own game board from poster or foam board, and create a larger, folding board by making a “hinge” from durable duct tape. I tried it, and it worked well. Any recycled box of the right size and shape can be decorated to create a box for your game. Next time, I think I’ll buy plastic gems from a craft store and search our toy bins for small plastic animals and cars that could be incorporated into the design of a game. For the holidays, I’m going to create some “makeyour-own-board-game” sets for other kids in my life.

Catan, Forbidden Island, Scrabble, Stratego and chess. Now my kids are 12, 9 and 7, and we’re on a Risk and Dungeons & Dragons kick. Over the years, my children have sketched game boards on scrap paper and invented mazes and word searches for each other, which made me wonder: What kinds of games would their older, more mature brains come up with if I encouraged them to invent board games? So I bought some supplies, and we spent a recent cold and rainy afternoon making our own games by the woodstove. You can buy blank game boards, made of stiff cardboard, and blank playing cards from some office-supply stores or online. I added some dice, plastic pawns and a pile of new markers, and they went to town. My 9-year-old son, Abe, immediately came up with a name for his game: Diamonds or Demons? He created a world on his board, with home bases, houses and a castle, which is the ultimate goal. Players roll dice and draw cards to determine if they face monsters or win treasure. My 7-year-old daughter, Cora, who loves art, started with the design for her game, Household Battles — a Clue-like house interior with different rooms for players to move between. In each room, players fight battles by drawing a card to determine their opponent and then rolling dice. The highest number wins. I encouraged my kids to sketch their ideas on paper before they put marker to the pristinely blank

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2 017 T A L E N T S H O W F O R

VERMONT’S RISING STARS

SATURDAY, December 9, at noon

Kids ages 5-13 wow the crowd with two-minute acts showcasing their talents. Featuring Enoch & Woodhead Masters of Mayhem & Masters of Ceremony. Higher Ground Ballroom. Kids 6 & under free, $7 in advance, $10 at the door. Visit kidsvt.com/talentshow for ticket information.

SPONSORED BY:


JUST FOR KIDS

Ballad of

f o o t o Blo

Writing Contest & Winners .... 26 Coloring Contest Winners ....... 26 Coloring Contest .............................27 Puzzle Page........................................ 28 Birthday Club ................................... 28 Puzzle Answers ..............................50

Blootoof the Blue-Toed Reindeer had a mani-pedi date. Then a text came from Santa: Come back to me or you’ll be late! Stay on the path ’round ice floes; now’s the time you’d better leave. Don’t chip your turquoise toes, so you’ll look cool on Christmas Eve! Can you find the path that will get Blootoof back to Santa in time?

KIDSVT.COM DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018 KIDS VT

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SPONSORED BY

JUST FOR KIDS

Writing Contest In the winter months, snow provides a fun building material for creative kids. If you had an unlimited amount of snow, what would you build? Include lots of details about your snow creation. Attach an extra piece of paper if you need more space to write — and include a picture if you’d like!

COLORING CONTEST WINNERS Seven-year-old Arabella’s “Happy Ducks” embodies the sparkling spirit of this month’s spectacular art submissions. Her feathered friends are decorated with rainbow wings, bright gold bodies, and glossy red and blue stars. Hayden, 10, created a yellow bird with a rainbow-colored baby, against a wide, blue lake and starry sky. Five-year-old Patty decked out her duck in a top hat and bright orange and red plumage. Keep up the creative coloring, kids, and mail us your imaginative masterpieces in December and January.

HONORABLE MENTIONS PLAYFUL PIGEON

The winners of annual family memberships to the Fairbanks Museum & Planetarium are…

“Land of the Giant Birds” 5 & under Ella Daly, 5 ESSEX JUNCTION

Krystal May, 10, Bolton TWO TWEETS

Max Barron, 4, Winooski THE BARNYARD

Tucker Couture, 6, Ferrisburg THANKSGIVING TREATS

Audrey Neilson, 9, Charlotte ALL ABOUT NUMBERS

Luna Gordon, 5, Glover

KIDSVT.COM

SUPER SQUAWKING We’ll pick two winners and publish their names and entries in the next issue. Winners receive a $25 gift certificate to Crow Bookshop. Deadline to enter is January 15. Send your entries to: Kids VT, attn: Writing Contest, P.O. Box 1184, Burlington, VT 05402.

Name ________________________________

Emily Bandy, 9, Cambridge

Age __________________________________

COLORFUL CHICKLET

Town ________________________________ Email ________________________________ Phone ________________________________

Logan Peters-Smith, 4, Burlington SKIING AT SMUGGS

Leah Blais, 11, Colchester

“Creative Critters” Elise Cournoyer, 8 RICHMOND

6 to 8

KIDS VT

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

RAINBOW BIRDS

26

WRITING WINNERS

Joan Toolan, 6, East Barre

In last month’s issue, we asked kids to write about their perfect Thanksgiving meal. Below, find the winning entries. Max and Eliana each receive a $25 gift certificate to Crow Bookshop in Burlington.

Evan Fortune, 6, Georgia

Max Clegg, 8 BOLTON

of I smell the sweet smell tato, Thanksgiving turkey, po apple d an ng ffi stu , ies cranberr wait I . am cre pie with whipped d an r rie ng hu g tin get in line, n so tur my it’s y, hungrier. Finall with key tur th wi te pla my I stuff ng ffi stu , oes tat gravy, mashed po . Then pie le app th wi s isin and Cra or every I sit down and eat. I sav t, I decided tha er Aft e. bit s ou delici ING. GIV KS that I LOVE THAN

Eliana Mina, 3 BURLINGTON

The table would have lots of treats so that I can eat them after. Dumplings, cauliflower, some eggplants, juice, lemonade, milk, strawberries and turkey. Doda and Sharp Tooth* are going to be there. They’ll be there in three minutes because they live far away from us. *Note from Eliana’s mama: Doda and Sharp Tooth are Eliana’s imaginary friends.

A PURPLE POND FLY AWAY!

Maddison Bloomfield, 5, Montpelier DISCO DUCKS

Bayley Hayes, 7, Winooski

TOP TITLES “SNOWING WITH BIRDS”

Nico Longo, 5, Colchester “DUCKTASTIC DUO”

Nakyah Feurtado, 7, Rutland “BIRDIE HEAR, BIRDIE DO”

Molly Walsh, 10, Essex

“Always Together” Ellie Samora, 9 LUNENBURG

9 to 12


Coloring Contest! Three winners will each receive an annual family membership to the Fairbanks Museum & Planetarium. Send Kids VT your work of art by January 15. Be sure to include the info at right with your submission. Winners will be chosen in the following categories: (1) ages 5 and younger, (2) ages 6-8 and (3) ages 9-12. Winners will be named in the February issue of Kids VT. Send your high-resolution scans to art@kidsvt.com or mail a copy to Kids VT, P.O. Box 1184, Burlington, VT 05402.

Title _______________________________________ Sponsored by

Artist _____________________________________ Age ______________ Town _________________ Email _____________________________________ Phone _____________________________________

KIDSVT.COM DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018 KIDS VT

27


Birthday Club

JUST FOR KIDS

Jumble

BY DAVID L. HOYT & JEFF KNUREK

The letters of these crazy words are all mixed up. To play the game, put them back into the right order so that they make real words you can find in your dictionary. Write the letters of each real word under each crazy word, but only one letter to a square.

ia and ADARA lives in Georg . She’s 10 ry ua Jan on turns 13 king an artist who enjoys ma the at sculptures, working ng pottery wheel and drawi to es lov o als e anime. Sh swim and read. d to Adara wins a $50 gift car er. est lch Spare Time in Co

Congratulations to these December/ January Birthday Club winners!

Join the Club!

To enter, submit information using the online form at kidsvt.com/birthday-club Just give us your contact info, your children’s names and birth dates, and a photo, and they’re automatically enrolled.

HAILEY lives

Look up, down and diagonally, both forward and backward, to find every word on the list. Circle each one as you find it. When all the words are circled, take the UNUSED letters and write them on the blanks below. Go from left to right and top to bottom to find the answer to this riddle: How did the farmer find his lost cow?

HIVES LOG MEADOW PLOW RAKE RICE ROOSTERS SCARECROW SCYTHE SOIL WHEAT

JACE lives in Barre and turns 6 on January 23. He loves to dress up and act, paint and do crafts.

Riddle Answer:

SPARE TIME COLCHESTER • 215 LOWER MOUNTAIN VIEW DRIVE • 802-655-2720 • WWW.SPARETIMECOLCHESTER.COM

Riddle Search — THE FARM SCENE

No cash value. Can only be redeemed by Birthday Child’s Parent. Must present Golden Ticket at Birthday Party Check-in Before the start of Birthday Party. One Golden Ticket per birthday party. Book your birthday party and enjoy by: June 30, 2018

BY HELENA HOVANEC

CHLOE lives in Essex Junction and turns 8 on January 11. She’s a fun-loving girl who loves sports like roller derby, ice hockey and gymnastics. She’s learning to play the guitar and piano and enjoys doing arts and crafts and playing with her brother and sister.

BIRTHDAY CHILD IS FREE!

Puzzles4Kids

BALE OF HAY BOAR COOP CROPS EWE FENCE GATE GEESE GRAIN HARVEST 28 HERD KIDS VT

Print your answer here:

Hailey, Chloe and Jace each win $10 gift cards to Spare Time.

Present this Golden Ticket at the start of your party

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

KIDSVT.COM

You are now ready to solve this month’s Jumble For Kids. Study the picture for a hint. Then play around with the letters in the circles. You’ll find you can put them in order so that they make your funny answer.

in Colchester and turns 6 on December 5. She loves to cuddle with her lamb, play with her sisters and read.

ANSWERS P. 50 Untitled-8 1

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Join us for a winter celebration for kids where it’s all about having fun!

Sat. Feb. 10th, 12 pm - 3 pm

Robert Miller Recreation Center | 130 Gosse Court There’s always loads activities! Outside: kids can try snowshoeing and xc skiing or play games, and meet some animals. Inside: kids enjoy balloon creations, face painting, crafts, dancing with Star 92.9 DJs and playing games with the Big Blue Trunk! There will be yummy food to buy, and MORE!

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KIDSVT.COM

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DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

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Live-In in America Vermont families say foreign au pairs offer childcare that’s flexible — and surprisingly affordable BY ALISON NOVAK

KIDS VT

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

KIDSVT.COM

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30

hen Emily Peters was pregnant with her third son, she found herself in a childcare predicament. Her home daycare provider was diagnosed with cancer and closed up shop. Peters, a Colchester resident, initially found a childcare center with an infant slot for her baby, a preschool slot for her middle child and an after-school slot for her oldest. But it was expensive — more than $20,000 a year, Peters estimates. To complicate matters, her youngest son was diagnosed with severe allergies, which made her wary of dropping him off at a center, and her middle son was having trouble adjusting to the new program. “It was super stressful and not very fun for anyone,” Peters, a senior academic adviser at Champlain College, remembered. That’s when she began to consider getting an au pair. These foreign women and men, ages 18 to 26, come to the U.S. for up to two years to provide live-in childcare. The federal government created this cultural-exchange program in 1986, and it’s administered by the U.S. Department of State, which contracts 16 private companies to implement it. While they’re here, au pairs are required to take the equivalent of six postsecondary credits, and they can travel domestically for a month after they finish their service. Peters, whose boys are now 7, 5 and 2, said she didn’t initially imagine she could afford the arrangement. This is just for rich people, she remembers thinking. But when she contacted

discount of approximately $1,000 on her own program fees. She said she’s committed to having an au pair until her youngest son enters kindergarten. “I was totally skeptical,” she admitted. “But now I think about it. Oh, my God … My stress has gone way down.”

FINDING “THE ONE”

Au pair Sina Marburger with Emily Peters’ sons

Cultural Care Au Pair, one of two au pair agencies that operates in Vermont, she crunched the numbers and realized that it was comparable to what she was already paying. (See “Show Me the Money” on opposite page for more on this topic.) Eighteen-year-old Sina Marburger from Germany came to live with the family in July 2016 for one year. This summer, the family welcomed a second German au pair, Josi Halstenberg. “Au pair” is a French term that means “on par” or “equal to,” and Peters said her au pairs have

Peters’ family is one of 27 in Vermont that currently have an au pair through Cultural Care, which was founded in 1989 and is based in Cambridge, Mass. Another agency, Stamford, Conn.based Au Pair in America — founded in 1986 — currently has eight au pairs The Nystrom family with au in Vermont. The au pairs from the two pair Daris Diaz (top) agencies hail from Germany, France, Italy, Austria, Poland, Switzerland, Brazil, Thailand and Mexico. The State Department sets rules become like members of her all au pair agencies must follow. Au family. The flexibility of live-in pairs are required to work no more childcare has been another than 45 hours a week and receive a boon. It allows her to get into $200 weekly stipend and two weeks of the office early or stay late, work when the kids have a snow paid vacation per year. Host families must provide a private room and three day, have someone to help with meals a day. (See “Au Pair Guidelines” kid-related household chores on page 33 for more information.) like dinner prep and the boys’ Costs and procedures for the two laundry, and shop for groceries solo. agencies operating in Vermont are A year and a half after she first similar. However, contacted Cultural while Cultural Care Care, Peters reached offers male and out to the agency female au pairs, again to ask how she Au Pair in America could support the works exclusively program locally. In with women. February, she began GENNY NYSTROM Host families working for Cultural likened the process Care as a part-time of finding an au pair to online dating. consultant, organizing monthly au Through an agency’s website, pair outings and supporting Vermont families can view au pair profiles, families and au pairs when questions which include a biographical essay, or challenges arise. She earns about photos, information about childcare $100 per month and gets an annual

The exposure to another language, another culture, is great for children.


experience and a short video. Host families also create profiles, but au pairs can’t see them until a family initiates contact. Families can narrow their search by selecting specific criteria, like the age of an au pair or whether the au pair has driving experience. Skye McIvor, public relations coordinator for Cultural Care, said her agency has specialists who help families navigate the online system and propose matches. When a family finds a potential candidate, they customarily do one or two Skype interviews, then communicate via email until they’re sure they’ve found the right fit. Genny and John Nystrom, who both work from home for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, wanted a Spanish-speaking au pair for their four children, ages 2 to 13. Genny and John both grew up in southern California, and John’s family is from Costa Rica. Their other criteria: someone willing to get

the summer of 2016 and is currently several months into her second year with the Nystroms. Becca Corneau of Burlington, director of digital marketing for Waterbury-based skin-care company Ursa Major, said she pored over candidates’ pictures and profiles on the Cultural Care website when she began

Au pair Marlene SchulteKörne

the family welcomed their third German au pair. Corneau said the experience has been “wonderful.” To help find a good match, the Nystroms stressed that, during the interview process, it’s important to be “up-front and honest” with potential caregivers about what Vermont is like. “There’s not a beach here” and “It’s really snowy” are two things Genny said she told potential hires. For some au pairs, those facts were deal breakers, but not for Diaz. In an interview at the Nystroms’ home in a quiet South Burlington neighborhood, Diaz said she likes that Vermont is one of the safest states in America, and she loved seeing snow for the first time and trying out snowboarding last winter. She’d rather watch Netflix in her room during her time off than go out and party, she said, which makes her

SHOW ME THE MONEY:

The Leeuw family with au pair Marlene SchulteKörne (right)

$

189

/week

$

/week

per child under 5 for daycare center Total for two children under 5 in full-time daycare at a center:

76 25,3 year*

$

per

*All figures are approximate and reflect Chittenden County childcare costs. Source: Child Care Resource in Williston

200 $500

/ year

toward academic coursework for au pair

8,0009,000 ann $

ual payment to au pair agency

TOTAL:

24,00025,000

$

per year*

*Total cost includes extras such as cellphone service, gas, toiletries and vacations.

Despite such efforts, acclimation can be challenging for both parties. Families and au pairs are living and working together, after all, and they come from different cultures and countries. In 2015, Michelle Downes of Burlington, who works from home for IBM, used Au Pair in America to hire Thai au pair Wipada Kasikorn, who goes by the nickname Anna, to LIVE-IN IN AMERICA, P. 32 »

KIDS VT

a Vermont driver’s license and who would be comfortable driving here, and someone who shares some of the same interests as their older children. After interviewing nearly a dozen candidates from Au Pair in America, the Nystroms found Daris Diaz, a 24-year-old from Panama who’s a sports enthusiast, like the family’s eldest son, and enjoys doing art projects with their 9-year-old daughter. Diaz, who’d never been to the United States before, arrived in Vermont in

looking for an au pair more than three years ago. At that time, her daughter, Piper, was a toddler and she was pregnant with her son, Oliver. Corneau interviewed two candidates via Skype and ultimately went with her gut in selecting 18-year-old Louisa Gayer from Germany. Corneau’s instincts were spot-on. Gayer stayed for two years, and Corneau said her kids formed a deep “emotional connection” with her. This summer,

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Sarah and John Leeuw of Colchester, who both work for Dealer.com, have had six au pairs through Cultural Care — from Brazil, Switzerland and Germany — since 2013, when their youngest daughter was a baby. Two of them went home early because of homesickness. Leeuw recommends that once families find an au pair, they stay in regular touch with them leading up to the au pair’s arrival. For her family, that’s meant occasional Skype chats and becoming “friends” on Facebook and Instagram “so they can start seeing our life and we can see theirs, so by the time they get here, they already feel a little bit part of the family.” In the case of her family’s current au pair, Marlene Schulte-Körne, the family matched with her in April, but her start date wasn’t until the end of July. AU PAIR Leeuw says she sent HOST FAMILY Schulte-Körne an EXPENSES 18th birthday card in June, just to let $ /week, her know they were 3 meals/day and thinking of her.

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

per child under 5 for home daycare

NAVIGATING THE TRANSITION

KIDSVT.COM

AVERAGE DAYCARE EXPENSES

well-suited to this area. Vermont, she said “is 100 percent boring, and that is perfect for me.”

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Live-In in America

Becca Corneau and family with their first au pair, Louisa Gayer (left)

KIDS VT

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

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take care of her then-infant twin sons, Felix and Kermit. Downes said it took her a few months to get completely comfortable having another person always around, and she would do things like clean up the house for Kasikorn’s sake. “I was a little uncomfortable with just letting things be reality,” she said. But “it’s just exhausting. You can’t keep that up.” When families are considering whether an au pair is right for them, Downes had this advice: “The au pair is going to see you argue with your spouse and yell at your children,” she said. “So you have to ask yourself if you’re comfortable really letting someone into your life.” For Downes, the language barrier also proved tricky to navigate. The family relied on “a lot of demonstration” to teach Kasikorn how to do things like change cloth diapers and make bottles, Downes said. And, at first, Kasikorn had difficulty communicating her feelings and more nuanced concepts. As a result, Downes and her husband tried to simplify their language when Kasikorn was around. Even though she had taken English classes in Thailand, Kasikorn admitted, “I was scared to speak English.” But at some point, Downes said, she “just got over it and started talking.” For the Nystrom family, meals posed a bit of a challenge. Diaz didn’t like certain foods and thought meat was served too rare, she said. But she voiced her concerns to the Nystroms and was able to find foods she liked. She now considers herself a fan of two things she never tried in Panama: barbecue and Vermont maple syrup. Corneau said she found out early into her first au pair’s year that clear communication is key to success. An incident in which the au pair put her then-2-year-old to sleep in a hotel room, then left to go to another room in the hotel — something that would have been acceptable in Germany but which Corneau found alarming — led

Becca Corneau’s kids celebrate current au pair Jessica Heinze’s birthday

Au pair Wipada “Anna” Kasikorn with the Downes twins

AU PAIR GUIDELINES

The U.S. Department of State regulates the au pair program and sets specific requirements for au pairs and host families. Au pairs must be between the ages of 18 and 26, must have graduated from secondary school, and must be proficient in English. Au pairs must pass a background check and receive a minimum of 32 hours of childcare training before starting work. Once in the United States, au pairs are allowed to live with a host family for 12 months, with the option of extending their work as an au pair by six, nine or 12 months. The J-1 visa allows au pairs to take an additional month to travel in the U.S. upon successful completion of their service. Au pairs must provide up to 10 hours a day, and 45 hours a week, of childcare. They are entitled to two weeks of paid vacation per year and one complete weekend off each month. Au pairs must complete at least six credits at an accredited postsecondary educational institution during their stay. Host families must provide the au pair with a suitable private bedroom. A bathroom may be shared.

to an important realization. “I learned you can never be overly explicit. Explain as much as possible,” Corneau said. “Now the au pairs are probably like, ‘OK, lady, I get it.’ I need to over-explain because there are language barriers and cultural barriers. That was a huge lesson for me.”

MUTUAL BENEFITS To help ensure that things go smoothly, local au pairs have monthly group outings, facilitated by a local community counselor, during which they visit different places in Vermont, talk about life in the U.S., and address questions or problems, such as homesickness or issues with a host family. Inevitably, there are some au pairs and families that just don’t jell. When that happens, with the agency’s help, the family is able to choose a new au pair and the au pair has the option to be placed with another family. Cultural Care declined to provide the exact percentage of au pairs that are rematched, but public relations coordinator McIvor said “the vast majority of au pair placements are successful from start to finish.” Local counselor for Au Pair in America Annemarie Furey said that her agency had just one au pair rematch this year in Vermont because the au pair wanted to move to a warmer climate. Much more common, said Furey, is for an au pair to extend a one-year stay to two years. When the match is a good one, it benefits both host families and

au pairs. All five families interviewed for this story said that having an au pair makes parenting easier. Downes described some of the ways that plays out: She can let her now-toddler twins have a relaxed morning instead of rushing them out the door to daycare; she’s able to stop working to take them to their doctor’s appointments and then have the au pair work a little later; and she and her husband can schedule regular date nights. The Nystroms value the cultural component of the experience. They lived in Germany before moving to Vermont four years ago and hosted Japanese exchange students while living in California. “The exposure to another language, another culture, is great for children,” Genny said. And having someone from a different country living with them encourages the family to take more local sightseeing excursions than they otherwise might. For au pairs, living with an American family provides an opportunity to strengthen their English skills and see new places. Diaz went to the Outer Banks in North Carolina and on an Alaskan cruise with the Nystroms last year. Kasikorn, who’d never flown before becoming an au pair, traveled with the Downes family to San Francisco and on her own to Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles. And Schulte-Körne, who’s been in the U.S. just a few months, has already taken road trips to Boston, Montréal and Portland, Maine, with other au pairs she’s befriended. There’s also a more sentimental side of the arrangement. The families interviewed all say they’ve formed


You have to ask yourself if you’re comfortable really letting someone into your life.

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DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

special bonds with so much,” she their au pairs. said. During her stay, “You have Kasikorn cooked to be a flexible, Thai food for the open-minded Downes family person to even once a week. This consider doing summer, Genny this program, to MICHELLE DOWNES Nystrom and her move to a place four kids went to you don’t know,” Panama with Diaz so they could Downes said. “It’s pretty amazing see where she was from and meet that these young women take this her family. And Schulte-Körne leap of faith.” K joined the Leeuw family for a hike For more information, and brunch on a recent weekend visit Au Pair in America at to celebrate Sarah’s birthday. aupairinamerica.com and Cultural Sarah Leeuw described the scene Care Au Pair at culturalcare.com. when an au pair goes home. “Everyone’s at the airport crying,” she THE 411 ON J-1 VISAS said. As her kids have Foreign au pairs come to the United gotten older, it’s been States through a J-1 Exchange Visitor more difficult to say Program, which provides visas for goodbye, but they keep people to participate in work- and in touch with all but study-based exchange opportunities. one of their au pairs and Administered by the U.S. Department plan to travel overseas of State, the program admits around 300,000 foreign visitors from 200 to visit them when her countries and territories each year. 2-year-old daughter is a Camp counselors, college students, little older. resea rch assistants, professors or A few days before scholars, physicians, teachers, and Kasikorn headed home others are also covered by the J-1 visa. to Thailand, while a Eighty-six percent of them are 30 new Brazilian au pair years of age or younger. watched the boys, In August 2017, the Wall Street Journal reported that the Trump Downes and Kasikorn administration was “considersat down for an ing major reductions in cultural interview. exchange programs, including those “She took care of for au pairs and summer workers” as our children for two part of the president’s “Buy American years and was so and Hire American” executive order, loving, and they’re so issued in April. Shortly thereafter, attached to her. And a petition from Cultural Care Au not that they’ll never Pair began circulating on change. org, asking people to “Save the J-1 Au see her again, but it Pair Program.” To date, nearly 28,000 will be a long time peop le have signed it. before we travel to On September 7, the U.S. Senate Thailand,” Downes Appropriations Committee passed said. an amendment to the federal budget Kasikorn will — cosponsored by Sen. Patrick Leahy take home memories (D-Vt.), Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) and of going to the Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) — designed to ensure that any changes library with Felix made to the J-1 Exchange Visitor and Kermit, sitting Program be done publicly, in consultatogether on the tion with Congress and through a big swings at the standard federal regulatory process. waterfront and riding In December, if Congress approves the the bus to Oakledge federal budget, the amendment will Park. “I love the boys likely pass into law.

33 4/27/17 2:58 PM


Working

Wonders Vermont’s only pediatric plastic surgeon gives new smiles to kids born with craniofacial differences BY KEN PICARD

KIDS VT

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

KIDSVT.COM

O

34

pal and Patrick Sutton are real-life wonders. Like fifth grader Auggie Pullman, the main character in the 2012 children’s novel and recently released motion picture Wonder, Opal and Patrick were born with severe craniofacial anomalies. Both children, who are biologically unrelated, were abandoned as infants on the streets of China and defied overwhelming odds to survive. Opal was born with a large craniofacial nevus, or “mole gone wild,” as her father, Doug Sutton, calls it. It covered 75 percent of her head and 25 percent of her face. The skin condition was so severe, Sutton notes, that the Chinese adoption agency removed her from the adoption rolls because no one had expressed an interest in taking her. That is, until Sutton and his wife, Heidi, both nurses at the University of Vermont Medical Center, saw her photo. “She had this infectious smile that just latched onto me,” recalls Doug Sutton. “That was the hook.” He and his wife adopted Opal when she was 2.5 years old. Patrick, whom the Suttons adopted first, was born with a severe cleft lip and palate, which made eating almost impossible. According to Sutton, his face was severely malformed, and he had teeth growing from the top part of his face and skull. When the Suttons brought Patrick home to Vergennes when he was 18 months old, he was so malnourished that he suffered from seizures and rickets, a bone disorder. Today, both kids are 13 years old. When their father is asked how they’re doing physically and emotionally, he doesn’t hesitate. “Fabulous!” he answers with a hearty laugh. Both kids are happy,

healthy and active. They have two other siblings with special needs who were also adopted from China. In September, Sutton, his wife and all of the kids participated in the annual Spartan Race in Killington. As Sutton describes it, “They’re the gazelles running across the Serengeti Plains, and I’m the lumbering rhinoceros just trying to keep up.” Opal and Patrick are both patients of Dr. Donald Laub of Green Mountain Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery in Colchester. Each child has undergone dozens of surgeries, the vast majority of which Laub performed. According to Sutton, Laub essentially re-created their faces, which, in Patrick’s case, enabled the boy to learn to speak. “He’s been the best,” Sutton said of Laub. “He really has done a fabulous job with Opal and Patrick. They wouldn’t have gotten this in China.” Laub, who’s been practicing medicine in Vermont for 20 years, is currently the state’s only pediatric plastic surgeon. In addition to treating patients from Vermont and New York’s North Country, Laub travels to developing countries to perform surgery on kids with craniofacial birth defects — or, as he prefers to call them, facial “differences.” Though pediatric patients comprise only about one-fifth of his medical practice, Laub describes it as his most rewarding work. Kids born with facial differences are often teased and ostracized by their peers, resulting in lower self-esteem and difficulties in school

Dr. Donald Laub with overseas patients

and other social settings. Once, Laub recalls, he arrived at an overseas clinic to find a child waiting to see him with a paper bag over his head. Some cultures believe that children with facial anomalies are being punished for the sins of their ancestors or family members. Laub sees them differently. “These kids haven’t done anything wrong. They’re born this way,” he says. “These kids are sweet and cute. [My work] is a chance to … make a big impact on the rest of their life.” The most common birth difference Laub treats are clefts in the upper lip and palate, or roof of the mouth. During embryonic development, he explains, a fetus’ head and face form from separate anatomical parts that

merge into one as they grow. The groove on a person’s upper lip, called the philtrum, is the seam where those parts fused. In some fetuses, however, those parts don’t fuse completely, due to genetics, environmental factors or a combination of both, resulting in a fissure known as a cleft. Clefts are fairly common, he notes, occurring in one out of every 600 to 1,000 births. Indeed, in the midst of his interview, Laub received a phone call from a Burlington obstetrician about a baby who’d been born the previous day with a cleft. Some clefts are minor, Laub explains, and require only modest surgeries to make the lip appear normal and symmetrical. Others, however, dramatically alter the child’s teeth,


Kerris Manosh (right) with siblings Garrett and Sophie

Opal Sutton

of Baja California, where his father cleft palate and lip, a condition which worked with a local church mission to affects both sides of the mouth, had perform surgeries. several reconstructive surgeries At the time, Laub recalls, hanging performed by Laub, the most recent out in a Mexican church didn’t seem in December 2015. Nichols has only particularly exciting or fun. Later, praise for his surgeon. when he was in college, he went on a “I just want to thank [Dr. Laub] for similar trip to Portoviejo, Ecuador, his contributions to making a differwith some of his father’s colleagues. ence to individuals like me … and how While there, the young Laub develhe’s been able to help alleviate some of oped a whole new perspective on his the tough things about it and improve father’s work. the quality of lives of his patients,” “It was just fabulous,” Laub Nichols says. “That’s something I remembers about that trip. “I was able really appreciate.” to see what doctors Kelly Manosh of Hyde actually did helping Park agrees. Manosh people, and that and her husband, Jeff, made me decide adopted their daughter, what I wanted to do Kerris, from China when for the rest of my the girl was 2 years old. life.” The Manoshes knew Laub went on to beforehand that she had attend what is now a cleft lip and palate. the Medical College Kelly Manosh says of Wisconsin in that one reason they Milwaukee, where chose to adopt Kerris his father also was because she had studied medicine. been a dental hygienist Eventually, the for 15 years and was father-son team familiar with complicatook trips together tions of the mouth and KELLY MANOSH to Honduras and jaw. But another big Vietnam with factor, she adds, was ReSurge International. The nonprofit because she knew Vermont has such group, which the elder Laub founded, a good “cleft team” to help families is the first international humanitarevery step of the way. ian organization to provide free “They were amazing,” Manosh reconstructive surgery in developing says. “They sat in a circle around us, countries. Both Laubs went on mediand it was every profession that we cal missions together until a brain needed and even some we didn’t … tumor forced the elder Laub, who’s I knew we’d have the guidance we now 82, to give up surgery in 2002. needed without having to research In all, the younger Laub, 58, has everything myself.” taken 22 trips to seven countries, When Kerris first arrived, Manosh often returning to sites year after adds, she could barely say “mama” year. In Guatemala, he’s visited the due to the irregularities in her mouth. same hospital eight times, which Today, Manosh describes her now has allowed him to get to know the 9-year-old daughter’s speech as medical staff and track patients’ “amazing.” In fact, she adds, most progress. Though Laub works through people wouldn’t guess that she ever several international aid groups, he had a cleft. For that, she credits Laub. says he typically covers his own travel “He’s very thorough, and he’s very expenses. compassionate,” she says. “It feels The impact of Laub’s work has also like he’s super knowledgeable and been dramatic in the U.S. Tre Nichols experienced, so you feel safe and is a 19-year-old college freshman who secure.” grew up in Colchester and is now For kids who started life with so attending college in Barbourville, Ky. many challenges to overcome, that’s Nichols, who was born with a bilateral something worth smiling about. K 35

[Dr. Laub is] very thorough, and he’s very compassionate. It feels like he’s super knowledgeable and experienced, so you feel safe and secure.

KIDSVT.COM

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018 KIDS VT

gums, facial bones and palate, creating significant functional difficulties with feeding, speech and hearing. When someone with a cleft palate eats, for example, food can enter the nasal cavity. A child born with a severe cleft may also be unable to speak. He or she may not be able to produce “plosives,” or consonant sounds such as Ds and Ps, which are made by stopping and then releasing airflow using the lips, teeth and palate. Laub says that he tries to perform corrective surgeries as early as possible, sometimes on babies as young as 3 months old. Vermont is one of only a handful of states where the law requires insurance companies to cover such corrective surgeries for children.

Some children complete their treatments by age 3 or 4, Laub notes, while others require multiple follow-up surgeries into early adulthood. The surgeon also treats kids born with irregularly shaped skulls, noses and ears, as well as large pigmented moles on the face or head, which can pose a high risk of turning into cancer. Laub heads the Vermont Cleft Palate/Craniofacial Clinic, a multidisciplinary team of health care professionals that has been caring for children with such birth conditions since 1969. The team’s makeup can vary, but it generally includes a speech pathologist, an orthodontist, a surgeon, a pediatric psychologist, a geneticist, and an ear, nose and throat specialist. “It’s very important to have that team,” Laub explains. “Like you need a village to raise a child, you need a team to treat a child with a cleft.” Laub’s exposure to such work began in his own childhood. His father, Donald R. Laub Sr., is a retired plastic surgeon and Stanford University professor who also traveled the world with multidisciplinary medical teams to perform reconstructive surgeries on kids with cranial and facial differences. Laub’s father participated in more than 150 overseas trips, occasionally bringing his teenage son along to observe. Laub remembers piling into the back of his father’s Volkswagen microbus and driving south to Mexicali, the capital city of the Mexican state


CALENDAR DEC/JAN

SPONSORED BY:

KIDSVT.COM DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018 KIDS VT

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Week to Week This New Year’s Eve, FIRST NIGHT BURLINGTON partners with Burlington City Arts to present a fresh take on the annual all-ages celebration. Perennial favorites — including Circus Smirkus, the Dancing Dragons Parade and a 10-hour Cartoon Fest at Merrill’s Roxy Cinemas — remain. New additions include a Shiver Shiver Shake music and light show (inspired by Montréal’s Igloofest) with DJ Lee on the Church Street Marketplace and contemporary musical acts at the Flynn Center MainStage, such as Myra Flynn at 7 p.m. Buy buttons and tickets in advance at firstnightburlington.org. Sunday, December 31, 11 a.m.-midnight, downtown Burlington.

SAT

DEC 16

SAT

JAN 13

SUN

JAN 28

‘The Gift’: Graceful gliders sail across the ice, performing holiday-themed acts during this seasonal revue. 3-5 p.m., Leddy Park Arena, Burlington. Winter Wildlife Celebration: Nature enthusiasts explore exhibits and wintery trails with interactive guided tours and talks in the morning. Indoor and outdoor games, crafts, and a campfire with treats fill the afternoon. 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Vermont Institute of Natural Sciences, Quechee. Ice Fishing Festival: Aspiring anglers learn the basics of this winter sport with expert volunteers. A free fish fry, snacks, hot drinks and a warming hut keep the day toasty. 11 a.m.-3 p.m., Hoyts Landing, Springfield.

Like the University of Vermont Medical Center on Facebook and get weekly updates from Dr. First! See “First With Kids” videos at uvmhealth.org.

COURTESY OF STEPHEN MEASE PHOTOGRAPHY

s t e i F ve F un!


SUBMIT YOUR FEBRUARY EVENTS FOR PRINT BY JANUARY 15 AT KIDSVT.COM OR CALENDAR@KIDSVT.COM.

DECEMBER

5 Tuesday

CHITTENDEN Creative Tuesdays: Interesting materials spark young artists’ imaginations. Kids under 8 must be accompanied by an adult. Fletcher Free Library, Burlington, 3:15-4:45 p.m. Info, 865-7216. FREE Dorothy’s List Book Club: Middle readers make merry conversation around DCF pick Soar by Joan Bauer. Ages 8-11. Burnham Memorial Library, Colchester, 4 p.m. Info, 264-5660. FREE Library Elementary Event Planners: Young library helpers plan events for elementary students to take place in the New Year. Grades 6-8. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 3:30-4:30 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE One-on-One Tutoring: Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences students coach elementary-age kids in reading, math and science. Grades 1-6. Some assistance available for other grades in certain subjects with inquiry. Burnham Memorial Library, Colchester, 4:30-6 p.m.; preregister. Info, 264-5660. FREE

Spanish Musical Kids: Niños celebrate Latin American culture through tunes and games en español. Ages 1-5 with a caregiver. Fletcher Free Library, Burlington, 11-11:45 a.m. Info, 865-7216. FREE Winooski Lego Club: Budding builders bust out plastic-block creations with the weekly Lego challenge. Free meals available for ages 18 and under. Winooski Memorial Library, 3-6 p.m. Info, 655-6424. FREE FRANKLIN Adoption Support Group: Families facing adoption issues and challenges join forces in a respectful setting. All are welcome. Franklin County Seniors Center, St. Albans, 5:30-7:30 p.m. Info, 524-1700. FREE Sewing Club: Aspiring seamstresses make aprons in a two-part class. Ages 8 and up. Fairfax Community Library, 3-4:30 p.m.; preregister. Info, 849-2420. FREE RUTLAND Chess Club: Strategists of all skill levels partner up for playing. Ages 6 and up. Sherburne Memorial Library, Killington, 3-4 p.m. Info, 422-9765. FREE

Read to Willy Wonka the Chocolate Lab: A certified reading pooch listens patiently to emerging readers. Ages 3-10. Burnham Memorial Library, Colchester, 4:15 p.m.; preregister. Info, 264-5660. FREE

ORANGE Workshop for Families About the Vermont Early Learning Standards: Parents get informed about childhood development state standards from birth through grade 3. Topics include expectations for what children should be able to accomplish for success in school and life, and what experiences in homes, schools and communities can support positive growth. Lake Morey Resort, Fairlee, 10 a.m.12:30 p.m. & 6-8:30 p.m.; preregister. Info, 571-305-1542. FREE

Hour of Code: Computer-minded juveniles learn coding basics or consult with library staff to deepen skills. See hourofcode.com for more info. For ages 8 and up; younger children must be accompanied by an adult. Fletcher Free Library, Burlington, 2:30-4:30 p.m.; preregister. Info, 865-7216. FREE

WASHINGTON Maker Program: Crafty kiddos dig into different projects using the library’s materials and mentoring. Ages 8-11. Waterbury Public Library, 3-4 p.m.; preregister. Info, 244-7036.

One-on-One Tutoring: See December 5, 5-8 p.m.

FREE

WINDSOR Norwich Lego Tuesdays: Junior builders bust out blocks and get busy. Children under 8 must be accompanied by an adult. Norwich Public Library, 3:30-4:30 p.m. Info, 649-1184. FREE

6 Wednesday CHITTENDEN Family Game Day: Grown-ups and youngsters rally for a weekly round of tabletop fun. Free meals available for ages 18 and under. Winooski Memorial Library, 3-6 p.m. Info, 655-6424. FREE

It Takes A Village: Community members collaboratively construct a card-stock town for the library’s Train Hop train table. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 4-5 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE Read to Daisy the Therapy Dog: Book buffs bring a selection from home or borrow from the library to amuse an attentive canine. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 3:15-4 p.m.; preregister online. Info, 878-6956. FREE Reading Buddies: Little literati pair up with volunteers for literacy and laughs. Kindergarten and up. Burnham Memorial Library, Colchester, 3:30-4:30 p.m.; preregistration appreciated but not required. Info, 264-5660. FREE Yoga for Kids: Young yogis engage their energy and explore breathing exercises and relaxation poses with a professional instructor. Ages 2-5. Fletcher Free Library, Burlington, 11-11:30 a.m. Info, 865-7216. FREE FRANKLIN Fit Moms: Expectant mamas work out together, preparing for labor with cardio, strength, stretching and breathing. Northwestern Medical Center, St. Albans, 5:30-6:30 p.m. Info, 288-1141. FREE 6 WEDNESDAY, P.38

ESSEX VILLAGE TREE LIGHTING & TRAIN HOP: The village lights up

WASSAIL WEEKEND: Woodstock

welcomes the winter season with a weekend including live music, the Woodstock History Center’s open house, events at the Billings Farm and Museum, house tours, Saturday’s 2 p.m. equestrian parade on the Village Green, and more. Woodstock Village Green, FRIDAY, DEC. 8-SUNDAY, DEC. 10., Fees vary. Info, 457-3555.

HOLIDAY KINDNESS TEA: The

community kicks off the season with smiles while savoring an elegant tea, sharing random acts of kindness, playing games, savoring treats and socializing. Ages 5 and up. Milton Municipal Complex, SATURDAY, DEC. 9, 9-11 A.M., $9; preregister. Info, 893-4922. MAGIC OF CHRISTMAS IN ESSEX:

Santa and Mrs. Claus touch down at the Essex Ferry dock and travel by fire truck to the station house for a free pancake breakfast. Children’s activities, including a fun run at noon and a puppet show at the town hall at 1 p.m., follow. See christmasinessex.com for full details. Various locations, Essex, SATURDAY, DEC. 9, 9:30 A.M., small fee for some activities; food available for sale. FREE

fields last-minute gift requests before he heads back to the North Pole. Danforth Pewter, Middlebury, SATURDAY, DEC. 9, 9:30 A.M.-NOON. Info, 377-3557. FREE

A VERY MERRY MIDDLEBURY:

The college town is awash in holiday magic: free horse-drawn wagon rides, downtown events, gratis gift wrapping for local purchases and a 25¢-a-cup Hot Cocoa Hut in Cannon Park. See experiencemiddlebury.com for specific times. Downtown Middlebury, SATURDAY, DEC. 9, AND

SATURDAY, DEC. 16, 10 A.M.-4 P.M.

Info, 377-3557. FREE

VICTORIAN HOLIDAY OPEN HOUSE:

Carolers bring a merry and bright tone to an afternoon of crafts, free planetarium shows and holiday happenings. Fairbanks Museum & Planetarium, St. Johnsbury, SATURDAY, DEC. 9, 1:30-4 P.M. Info, 748-2372. FREE

ebrates the holiday of light with traditional latkes, applesauce and dessert. Special guest the Amazing Marko makes merry with games, a dreidel tournament and storytelling. Ohavi Zedek Synagogue, Burlington, SUNDAY, DEC. 10, 11 A.M.-1 P.M., $5-7 suggested donation; $18 per family. Info, 864-0218. SANTA COMES TO WEST BURKE: A cheery guy in red soars into town with cookies, cocoa and a sleigh. MIke’s Gas, West Burke, SUNDAY, DEC. 10, 11 A.M.-1 P.M., donations accepted for the food shelf. Info, 626-4124. FREE CHRISTMAS AT THE FARM: Fête the season the old-fashioned way, with 19th-century crafts, tours of the 1890 farmhouse and woodstove-baked treats. Horse-drawn sleigh or wagon rides from December 26-January 1, weather permitting. Billings Farm & Museum, Woodstock, SATURDAYS AND SUNDAYS, 10 A.M.-4 P.M., THROUGH JAN. 1,

Regular museum admission, $4-15; free for children under 3. Info, 457-2355.

HOLIDAY WITH THE ANIMALS:

Santa and Mrs. Claus please pet lovers with a holiday party, sweets and face-painting. Central Vermont Humane Society, East Montpelier, SATURDAY, DEC. 16, 10 A.M.-2 P.M., donations accepted for shelter needs. Info, 476-3811. FREE

OLD-FASHIONED VISITS WITH SANTA: Deserving

kids read their holiday wish lists to jolly ol’ Saint Nick in a real toy workshop. Maple Landmark Woodcraft, Middlebury, SATURDAY, DEC. 16, 10 A.M.-NOON.

Info, 377-3557. FREE

SKATE WITH SANTA: A cheerful elf dons skates to circle the rink with young gliders as holiday music plays. Free hot chocolate, candy canes and photo ops. Stowe Arena, SATURDAY, DEC. 16, 12:15-2:15 P.M., $5; additional fee for skate and helmet rental. Info, 253-6138. DREIDLS & DRUMS FAMILY HANUKKAH BASH: Families fête

the Festival of Lights with music, merrymaking, dancing and doughnuts. Beth Jacob Synagogue, Montpelier, SUNDAY, DEC. 17, 4-6 P.M. Info, 505-3657.

FREE

‘CHRISTMAS AT THE GRANGE’:

ArtisTree Music Theatre Festival entertains musical fans with an evening of seasonal songs and holiday Broadway hits. The Grange Theatre, South Pomfret, MONDAY, DEC. 18, 7:30 P.M., $17-20. Info, 457-3500.

KIDS VT

BREAKFAST WITH SANTA: Festive families fill their bellies with breakfast, chat with Santa and Mrs. Claus, sing along to Christmas carols, decorate cookies and craft ornaments. Gardener’s Supply, Williston, SATURDAY, DEC. 9, 9-10 A.M., $15; preregister. Info, 658-2433.

costumed characters while enjoying balloons, music and more. Middlebury Inn, SATURDAY, DEC. 9, 8:30 & 10 A.M., $8-12; preregister. Info, 377-3557.

OLD-FASHIONED VISITS WITH SANTA: The round guy in red

FAMOUS & FABULOUS HANUKKAH PARTY: The community cel-

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

at 6:15 p.m. for a festive evening with model train displays all over town and a free trolly shuttle to Maple Street Park for merriment and music. Downtown Essex Junction, FRIDAY, DEC. 8, 6-8 P.M. Info, 878-1375. FREE

HOLIDAY CHARACTER PANCAKE BREAKFAST: Revelers feast with

Hot cocoa, caroling and Santa Claus make for a magical evening around the community conifer. Bring an ornament that will withstand weather. Hannaford Plaza Milton, SATURDAY, DEC. 9, 7 P.M. Info, 893-4922. FREE

KIDSVT.COM

Holiday Happenings

MILTON HOLIDAY TREE LIGHTING:

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CALENDAR DECEMBER 6 Wednesday (cont.) RUTLAND Killington Lego Club: Busy kiddos build with plastic blocks, inspired by a weekly theme. Ages 6 and up; children under 8 must be accompanied by an adult. Follows the school calendar. Sherburne Memorial Library, Killington, 3-4 p.m. Info, 422-9765. FREE Rutland Winter Farmers Market: More than 50 vendors peddle fresh salad greens, apples and cider, artisan cheeses, homemade breads, and other local products. Vermont Farmers Food Center, Rutland, 3-6 p.m. Info, 342-4727.

Classes List your class or camp here for only $20 per month! Submit the listing by January 15 at kidsvt.com or to classes@kidsvt.com. FAMILY DAY: Join the Helen Day Art Center

KIDS VT

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

KIDSVT.COM

for an afternoon full of sweet treats and seasonal art activities in conjunction with the Festival of Trees and Light exhibit. We’ll create holiday decorations and build gingerbread houses. It’s an afternoon not to be missed! Saturday, December 9, 1-4 p.m.; drop in anytime. Helen Day Art Center, 90 Pond Street, Stowe. Free. Info, programs@helenday.com.

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FAMILY WHEEL DROP IN: Explore BCA’s clay studio while hanging out with the family. Try the pottery wheel or create fantastic clay sculptures while our staff gives demonstrations. There is a $5 additional fee per clay piece to be kept, fired and glazed. No registration necessary, but access to wheels is limited. Groups larger than six people are encouraged to set up a private workshop. All ages. Fridays, January 26-May 18, 5-7 p.m. $10 per participant; $9 for BCA members. BCA Studios, 405 Pine Street, Burlington. Purchase a drop-in card and get the sixth visit for free! Info, 865-7157. POTTERY WHEEL: This day is all about learning the basics of the ever-popular pottery wheel. Students will have all day to get their hands on clay, spinning it into small bowls or cups to be fired and glazed by the studio. All items will be dishwasher safe and lead-free. All basic supplies are included. Students must bring a bag lunch; snacks will be provided. Ages 6-11. Monday, April 23, and Friday, April 27, 8 a.m.-3 p.m. $70; $63 for BCA members. BCA Studios, 405 Pine Street, Burlington. Info, 865-7166, burlingtoncityarts.org. PAINTING: This one-day camp is designed for the young painter who wants to go beyond the typical tempera. Join us at BCA’s painting studio to experiment with watercolors and acrylic on paper or canvas, large or small. Have fun while learning new techniques that will help you make even better paintings. All basic supplies are included. Students must bring a bag lunch; snacks will be provided. Ages 6-11. Tuesday, April 24, 8-3 p.m. $70; $63 for BCA members. BCA Studios, 405 Pine Street, Burlington. Info, 865-7166, burlingtoncityarts.org.

ORANGE Holiday Artisans Market: Local artisans and specialty food producers offer a fine array of handcrafted gifts, including pottery, silk scarves, stained glass, maple syrup, chocolates and more. Chandler Music Hall, Randolph, noon-6 p.m. Info, 728-6464. FREE Randolph Lego Wednesdays: Aspiring architects construct creatively while chatting. Kimball Public Library, Randolph, 2:30-4:30 p.m. Info, 728-5073. FREE

CRAZY CREATURES: Create awe-inspiring creatures out of the pages of your favorite book, from your favorite movie or from your imagination. Will your creature have two or four heads? Will it be an animal or a vegetable? You get to decide in this fun one-day camp that lets you get creative, through drawing, painting and crafts. All basic supplies are included. Students must bring a bag lunch; snacks will be provided. Ages 6-8. Wednesday, April 25, 8-3 p.m. $70; $63 for BCA members. BCA Studios, 405 Pine Street, Burlington. Info, 865-7166, burlingtoncityarts.org. PHOTOGRAPHY: Explore photography in our black-and-white darkroom and digital lab! Campers will go on guided photo shoots and will create prints in this fun, hands-on day. All basic supplies are included. Students must bring a bag lunch; snacks will be provided. Ages 9-11. Wednesday, April 25, 8-3 p.m. $70; $63 for BCA members. BCA Studios, 405 Pine Street, Burlington. Info, 865-7166, burlingtoncityarts.org. MINI WORLDS: Shrink down with us and

create small beautiful worlds. Campers will be encouraged to explore a variety of craft media to develop tiny, intricate terrariums, dollhouses or fairy worlds. All basic supplies are included. Students must bring a bag lunch; snacks will be provided. Ages 6-11. Thursday, April 26, 8 a.m.-3 p.m. $70; $63 for BCA members. BCA Studios, 405 Pine Street, Burlington. Info, 865-7166, burlingtoncityarts.org. HIGH SCHOOL PHOTOGRAPHY: Tell your

story with photographs in this six-week session for high school students! Students will explore their ideas, go on group photo shoots, process and print digital photos and zines in our digital lab, experiment with film photography in our darkroom and participate in supportive discussions and critiques. All supplies and cameras provided. Scholarships are available. No experience required. Ages 14-18. Fridays, February 2-March 16 (no class March 2), 4:30-6:30 p.m. $150; $135 for BCA members. BCA Studios, 405 Pine Street, Burlington. Info, 865-7166, burlingtoncityarts.org.

WASHINGTON The Wonderful World of Bats With Jerry Schneider: An interactive talk teaches an avid audience why these small winged creatures are important for farmers, fruit growers, the rainforest and us, including fun facts about bat eyesight, echolocation, migration and hibernation. A T-shirt craft follows; bring your own or purchase one for $4. Jaquith Public Library, Marshfield, 6:45 p.m. Info, 426-3581. FREE

PRENATAL & POSTNATAL YOGA CLASSES AT EVOLUTION PRENATAL & FAMILY YOGA CENTER: Have a more comfortable

pregnancy and prepare for birth with stretching, strengthening and relaxation in prenatal yoga — and then bring your body back to balance and strength in postnatal yoga. Join our community of mothers at any point in your pregnancy and six weeks or later in your postpartum time (until baby is crawling). No yoga experience necessary. Prenatal Yoga: Saturdays, 11:30 am; Sundays, 10:15 a.m.; Mondays, 5:45 p.m.; Tuesdays, 4:15 p.m.; Wednesdays, 5:45 p.m.; Thursdays, 12:30 p.m.; Fridays, 8:15 a.m. Postnatal Yoga: Sundays, 12:15 p.m.; Tuesdays, 10 a.m.; Thursdays, 10:45 a.m.; Fridays, 8:15 a.m.; Fridays, noon (postnatal core). Drop-ins welcome; $15 per class, $130 per 10-class pass, or $75 per monthly unlimited. Evolution Prenatal & Family Yoga Center, 20 Kilburn St., Burlington. Info, evolutionprenatalandfamily.com. EVOKIDS & EVOBABIES YOGA CLASSES AT EVOLUTION PRENATAL & FAMILY YOGA CENTER: Register now for our January

series of EvoKids and EvoBabies Yoga, ages 6 months to teen. Weekday and weekend classes available. Evolution Prenatal & Family Yoga Center, 20 Kilburn St., Burlington. Info, evolutionprenatalandfamily.com.

BRAZILIAN JIU-JITSU: The future of our nation rests on the courage, confidence and determination of its people. Our Kids BJJ Program promotes self-esteem, self-confidence, character development and a physical outlet with discipline, cooperation with other children, respect for peers and adults, perseverance and a healthy lifestyle. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu will help your kids to learn realistic bullyproofing and self-defense skills that they can use for the rest of their lives! Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu builds endurance, patience and self-respect. Give your kids the ability to get stronger, gain confidence and build resilience! Our sole purpose is to help empower people by giving them practices they can carry with them throughout life. Remember, you are raising children, not flowers. First class is free! Please stop by our school at 55 Leroy Road, Williston. Info, 598-2839, vermontbjj.com, julio@bjjusa.com to register your son or daughter!

Walk-Through Wednesday at Orchard Valley: Parents checking out an alternative education for their children tour classrooms for grades 1 through 8, a mixed-age kindergarten, and the Farm & Forest program. Orchard Valley Waldorf School, East Montpelier, 8:30-10:30 a.m.; preregister by noon on the preceding day. Info, 456-7400. FREE

WINDSOR Sensory Lab for Tots: Wee ones explore selfguided art stations, including finger painting, modeling dough, moon sand and more. Ages 5 and under; adult supervision required. ArtisTree/Purple Crayon, South Pomfret, 9:30-11:30 a.m., $5. Info, 457-3500.

7 Thursday ADDISON Midd Night Stroll: Holiday shoppers saunter through the downtown streets and take pleasure in pop-ups, tastings and the S.D. Ireland lighted cement mixer in Cannon Park from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Downtown Middlebury, 5-8 p.m., Food and drink available for purchase. Info, 377-3557. CALEDONIA Hardwick Lego Club: Fledgling architects construct collaboratively with colorful blocks. Jeudevine Memorial Library, Hardwick, 3-5 p.m. Info, 472-5948. FREE CHITTENDEN Audubon Homeschool Program: Homebased learners use the outdoor classroom to explore a variety of seasonal topics, from insect investigations to wilderness skills. Ages 6-8. Parent attendance optional. Green Mountain Audubon Center, Huntington, 9 a.m.-1 p.m., $20-25; preregister. Info, 434-3068. Babytime: Infants through pre-walkers have a ball with books, rhymes, songs and socializing. Fletcher Free Library, Burlington, 10:15-10:45 a.m. Info, 865-7216. FREE Colchester Lego Club: Mini makers participate in surprise challenges with interlocking toys. Ages 6-10. Burnham Memorial Library, Colchester, 4 p.m. Info, 264-5660. FREE Food for Thought Teen Group: Young adults polish off pizza as they ponder library projects. Grades 7-12. Dorothy Alling Memorial Library, Williston, 4-5 p.m. Info, 878-4918. FREE

Itty Bitty Public Skating: Tiny feet learn the art of sliding on ice through fun and games. Ages 2-5 with caregiver. Leddy Park, Burlington, 10-11:30 a.m., $8 per family; $1 skate rentals. Info, 865-7558. Kids’ Concert With Mr. Ethan: Little ones revel in musical merriment, songs and dancing with a special local guest from Music for Sprouts. All ages. Carpenter-Carse Library, Hinesburg, 4 p.m. Info, 482-2878. FREE Read to Archie the Therapy Dog: An attentive canine listens to little ones read. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 3:15-4:15 p.m.; preregistration appreciated. Info, 878-6956. FREE Williston Preschool Music: Lively tunes with local musicians strike the right note among the wee crowd. Second Thursdays feature Spanish music with Constancia Gomez. Ages 5 and under with a caregiver. Dorothy Alling Memorial Library, Williston, 10:30 a.m., Limited to one session per week per family. Info, 878-4918. FREE


SUBMIT YOUR FEBRUARY EVENTS FOR PRINT BY JANUARY 15 AT KIDSVT.COM OR CALENDAR@KIDSVT.COM. Winooski Workshop for Families About the Vermont Early Learning Standards: See Tuesday 5, O’Brien Community Center, Winooski, 10:30 a.m.-1 p.m. & 6-8:30 p.m.; preregister. Info, 571-305-1542. FREE FRANKLIN Fairfax PJ Story Time: Children chill in their jammies while listening to stories. Fairfax Community Library, 6-7 p.m. Info, 849-2420. FREE

Franklin Lego Thursdays: Kiddie constructionists combine their creativity with the library’s supplies. Haston Library, Franklin, 2-5 p.m. Info, 285-6505. FREE Gingerbread House Making: For once, youngsters get permission to play with their food. Graham crackers and other supplies provided. Ages 5 and up. St. Albans Free Library, 6 p.m.; preregistration required. Info, 524-1507. FREE Read to a Dog: Little bibliophiles select stories to share with a furry friend. Ages 5-10. Fairfax Community Library, 3:15-4:15 p.m.; preregister for 15-minute time slot. Info, 849-2420. FREE St. Albans Circle of Parents for Foster & Adoptive Families: Parents share childrearing stories to strengthen skills and build strong families. Franklin County Seniors Center, St. Albans, 5:30-7:30 p.m.; preregister. Info, 524-1700. FREE LAMOILLE Pre-K Art Play: Creative youngsters indulge their imaginations during this drop-in morning and make self-directed masterpieces. Ages 1-4 with caregiver. Helen Day Art Center, Stowe, 10-11:30 a.m., $5. Info, 253-8358. ORANGE Holiday Artisans Market: See December 6.

8 Friday CHITTENDEN Family Gym: Indoor playground equipment gives tiny tumblers a chance to run free. Ages 7 and under. Greater Burlington YMCA, 10:1511:45 a.m., $5-8 per family; free for members. Info, 862-9622. Family Wheel Drop-In: Parents and kids form clay sculptures with assistance from staff and try out the pottery wheel. BCA Studios, Burlington, 5-7 p.m., $9-10 per participant; $5 additional for each piece fired and glazed. Info, 865-7157. Homeschool Project Day: Out-of-classroom students partake in projects together. Milton Public Library, 1 p.m. Info, 893-4644. FREE Kids Music With Linda ‘Tickle Belly’ Bassick: Toe-tapping tunes captivate kiddies. Radio Bean, Burlington, 11 a.m. Info, 660-9346. FREE Music With Robert: Families sing along with a local legend. All ages. Fletcher Free Library, Burlington, 11-11:30 a.m. Info, 865-7216. FREE Preschool Yoga with Danielle: Simple movement, stories and songs satisfy children ages 5 and under and their caregivers. Dorothy Alling Memorial Library, Williston, 10:30 a.m. Info, 878-4918. FREE LAMOILLE Candy-Cane-Making Demo: Families make holiday memories as they watch confectioners in action, or they can get in on the fun and design twisted treats of their own. Preregistration recommended to participate or watch; space is limited. Laughing Moon Chocolates, Stowe, 11 a.m., free to watch; $6 per person to shape your own candy cane. Info, 253-9591.

MULTIPLE VERMONT LOCATIONS Virtual Town Hall With Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger: Burlington residents of all ages engage in an online Q&A with their mayor. Various locations, 1-2 p.m.; preregister.

RUTLAND Stuffie Sleepover: Furry friends are dropped off Friday after school, then picked up Saturday morning. A photo show illustrates the animals’ overnight adventures. Sherburne Memorial Library, Killington. Info, 422-9765.

FREE

FREE

ORANGE Holiday Artisans Market: See December 6. ORLEANS Lego Club: Petite ones build with plastic blocks and chat companionably. Ages 4-12. Craftsbury Public Library, Craftsbury Common, 3-4:30 p.m. Info, 586-9683. FREE WINDHAM Preschool Program: ‘Learning From the Abenaki’: Curious youngsters and their caregivers investigate how the Abenaki strengthened their land connection through hunting and gathering, while exploring ancient artifacts, soaking up their creation story and sharpening nature observation skills with a scavenger hunt. Ages 3-5. The Nature Museum at Grafton, 10-11:30 a.m., $5-8. Info, 843-2111.

9 Saturday CALEDONIA Victorian Holiday Craft Workshop: Art lovers fashion traditional Victorian-style stars and folded round fans. Ages 7 and up. Catamount Arts, St. Johnsbury, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Info, 748-2600. FREE CHITTENDEN Burlington Winter Farmers Market: Local farmers, artisans and producers offer fresh and prepared foods, crafts, and more in a bustling indoor marketplace made merry with live music. Davis Center, University of Vermont, Burlington, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Info, 310-5172. EvoKids Saturday Drop-In Yoga: Youngsters master basic yoga poses through games, songs and dance. Mindfulness activities improve focus and concentration. Evolution Prenatal & Family Yoga Center, Burlington, 11:45 a.m.12:30 p.m., $15. Info, 899-0339. One-on-One Tutoring: See December 5, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.

See Dr. First videos “First With Kids” at uvmhealth.org. Saturday Drama Club: Junior thespians create a character, spin a story and put on a performance, all in three hours. Ages 7-11. Old North End Community Center, Burlington, 10 a.m.-1 p.m., $15. Info, 355-1461. Spanish Musical Playgroup: Rhymes, books and songs en español entertain niños. Snack and playtime included. Ages 5 and under. NonSpanish speakers welcome. Dorothy Alling Memorial Library, Williston, 10:30 a.m.-noon. Info, 878-4918. FREE Webby’s Art Studio: The museum’s temporary and permanent exhibits inspire winter-themed art activities for all ages. Shelburne Museum, 11 a.m.-3 p.m., regular winter museum admission, $5-10; free for children under 5. Info, 985-3346. LAMOILLE Candy-Cane-Making Demo: See December 8, 11 a.m. & 2 p.m. Family Day: Seasonal art activities, including gingerbread house construction, make for a crafty drop-in afternoon for families in conjunction with the Festival of Trees and Light exhibit. Helen Day Art Center, Stowe, 1-4 p.m. Info, 253-8358. FREE RUTLAND Rutland Winter Farmers Market: See December 6, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Stuffie Sleepover: See December 8, 10 a.m.-noon. ORANGE Holiday Artisans Market: See December 6.

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

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10 Sunday

ORLEANS Cookies with Cookie: Author Lynda GrahamBarber celebrates the publication of her early reader, Cookie’s Fortune, a story about a stray dog, with a signing, live guitar music, cake, Champagne and chocolate milk. Nevermore Books, Newport, noon-2 p.m. Info, 334-3844. FREE

WASHINGTON Capital City Winter Farmers Market: Root veggies, honey, maple syrup and crafts change hands at an indoor off-season celebration of locavorism. Montpelier City Center, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Info, 223-2958. Kids Trade & Play: Families exchange clean and gently used clothing and toys, size newborn to 12. Capital City Grange, Berlin, 9:30-11:30 a.m., $3 per family. Info, 831-337-8632. WINDSOR Norwich Winter Farmers Market: Local growers present produce, meats and maple syrup, complementing baked goods and crafts from area artists. Tracy Hall, Norwich, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Info, 384-7447.

11 Monday

CALEDONIA Holiday Party & Tree Lighting: Cookies, cocoa and music from the Newark Balkan Chorus cheer the community at this annual tree lighting ceremony. East Burke Community Library, 2-5 p.m., donations accepted for the food shelf. Info, 626-4124. FREE CHITTENDEN Essex Open Gym: Energy-filled kids flip, jump and tumble in a state-of-the-art facility. Ages 6 and under, 1 p.m.; ages 7-12, 2:30 p.m.; ages 13 and up, 4 p.m. Regal Gymnastics Academy, Essex, 1-5:30 p.m., $8-14. Info, 655-3300. Family Gym: See December 8. Winter Gifts and Craftmaking: Using recycled and natural materials as inspiration, fans of handmade crafts make beautiful “green” objects and prepare yummy treats. Ages 5 and up with adult. Shelburne Farms, 9:30-11:30 a.m. & 12:30-2:30 p.m., $20-23 per parent-child pair; $15-17 per each additional child; preregister. Info, 985-8686. LAMOILLE Candy-Cane-Making Demo: See December 8.

CHITTENDEN Colchester Preschool Music: Bitty ones dance and sing to a brisk beat. Ages 3-5. Burnham Memorial Library, Colchester, 11:30 a.m. Info, 264-5660. FREE Crafts for Kids: Clever kiddos pursue artsy projects. Ages 5 and up. Burnham Memorial Library, Colchester, 3:30-4:30 p.m. Info, 264-5660. FREE Essex Lego Club: Eager builders bust out the blocks. Ages 5 and up. Essex Free Library, Essex Junction, 3:30-4:30 p.m. Info, 879-0313. Go Club: Game lovers get into the action of this 4,000-year-old strategy pastime. Best for grades 1 and up. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 5:30-6:30 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE Holiday Story Time: Traditional and new tales, tunes and treats delight youngsters. Ages 2-6. Burnham Memorial Library, Colchester, 10:30 a.m. Info, 264-5660. FREE Itty Bitty Public Skating: See December 7. Knitting for Kids: Yarn lovers of all skill levels learn with needles or looms. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 3:15-4:15 p.m. Info, 878-6955.

Pajama Story Time: Little ones in PJs nestle in for stories and snacks. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 6-6:30 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE

Pajama Story Time & Cookie Decorating: Flannel-clad small ones bring their stuffed pals for cozy stories and seasonal sweet decorating. All ages. Dorothy Alling Memorial Library, Williston, 6:30 p.m. Info, 878-4918. FREE

Queer Care Support: Adult family members and caregivers of queer and/or questioning youth swap stories and resources in a supportive space. Adults only. Outright Vermont, Burlington, 6:30-8 p.m. Info, 865-9677. FREE Stories with Megan: Little listeners learn and laugh. Ages 2-5. Fletcher Free Library, Burlington, 11-11:30 a.m. Info, 865-7216. FREE Williston Preschool Music: See December 7, 11 a.m. FRANKLIN Crafternoon: Happy Trees: Artsy kiddos learn two different techniques of watercoloring. Ages 6 and up. Fairfax Community Library, 3-4 p.m.; preregister. Info, 849-2420. FREE

FREE

ORANGE Holiday Artisans Market: See December 6.

Science & Nature SCIENCE & STORIES AT ECHO:

Preschoolers rally ’round for nature-inspired tales and activities. ECHO Leahy Center for Lake Champlain, Burlington,

KIDSVT.COM

WEDNESDAYS, 10:30 A.M., THROUGH JAN. 31., regular museum

admission, $11.50-14.50; free for children under 3. Info, 864-1848. TOUR THE COSMOS: This 50-minute live presentation takes the audience on a journey deep into the universe. Ages 6 and up. Fairbanks Museum & Planetarium, St. Johnsbury,

KIDS VT

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

SATURDAYS AND SUNDAYS, 1:30 P.M., THROUGH DEC. 23., $6 plus

40

regular museum admission, $7-9; free for children under 5. Info, 748-2372.

POP-UP NESTLINGS: Naturalists-

in-training and their caregivers have a blast with winter learning activities, including hiking, observing, collecting, questioning, exploring and more. Dress for the weather. Ages 3-6. Birds of Vermont Museum, Huntington, SECOND TUESDAY OF EVERY MONTH, 10:30-11:30 A.M., regular museum admission, $3.50-7; free for members and children under 3. Info, 434-2167.

CHRISTMAS BIRD COUNT: Avian enthusiasts leave no chickadee uncounted as they attempt to census every feathered flier in the greater Montpelier area. A potluck dinner follows. Preregister for details. North Branch Nature Center, Montpelier, SATURDAY, DEC. 16. Info, 229-6206. FREE SNOWY OWL DAY: Fans of Harry

Potter’s feathered friend meet a real white fowl and discover how these unique creatures survive in the Arctic. Vermont Institute of Natural Science Nature Center, Quechee, SATURDAY, DEC. 16, 10 A.M.-5 P.M., regular museum admission, $13-25; free for children under 4. Info, 359-5000. PRESCHOOL PROGRAM: SOLSTICE CELEBRATION: Small ones snuggle

in the snow like local animals while listening to stories of light and dark. Ages 3-5 with adult companion. Audubon Vermont, Huntington, THURSDAY, DEC. 21, 9-10:30 A.M., $8-10 per adult-child pair; $4 per each additional child; preregister. Info, 434-3068. REINDEER UP CLOSE AT ECHO:

Animal lovers step close to graceful creatures from the Vermont Reindeer Farm and learn how the antlered animals survive in the snow. ECHO Leahy Center for Lake Champlain, Burlington, THURSDAY, DEC. 28, 11 A.M. & 12:30 & 2 P.M., regular museum admission, $11.5014.50; free for children under 3. Info, 864-1848.

BIRD-MONITORING WALK:

Eagle-eyed participants bring their own binoculars to search the museum’s property for fluttering feathers. Best for adults and older children. Birds of Vermont Museum, Huntington, SATURDAY, DEC. 30, 8-9 A.M., donations welcome; preregister. Info, 434-2167. FREE MONTSHIRE MAKERS: Middle

school inventors use their imagination and the museum’s materials to create cool projects with different monthly themes. Grades 6-9. Montshire Museum of Science, Norwich, FIRST FRIDAY OF EVERY MONTH, 6:30-8 P.M., $8-15; preregistration

encouraged. Info, 649-2200.

BOOKS AND BEYOND! SCIENCE FOR PRESCHOOLERS: Children’s

literature and hands-on science activities engage eager youngsters. Ages 3-5 with caregiver. Montshire Museum of Science, Norwich, MONDAYS, DEC. 4 & JAN. 8, 10:15 & 11:30 A.M., regular museum admission, $12-15; free for children under 2. Info, 649-2200. ROBIN’S NEST NATURE PLAYGROUP:

Little explorers and their caregivers discover the sights and sounds of the forest and field while learning how the natural environment can be used as an adventurous classroom. Dress in outdoor clothing; bring a snack and water. Ages 5 and under. North Branch Nature Center, Montpelier, MONDAYS, DEC. 4, JAN. 8 & JAN. 22, 10 A.M.-NOON, donations welcome. Info, 229-6206.

A STARRY NIGHT: Sky gazers soak up stories of the Milky Way and winter constellations while warming up with cider, socializing and taking a peek at distant worlds through telescopes. Bring a flashlight or headlamp. Audubon Vermont, Huntington, THURSDAY, JAN. 11, 5:30-7 P.M., $5; free for members; preregister. Info, 434-3068. STOWE WINTER CARNIVAL: A

Vermont ski town gets its party on with cold-weather fun for all ages, from snow-volleyball tournaments to ice-carving competitions to Kids Karnival Kaos. Various locations, Stowe, JAN. 13-27, Various prices; see stowewintercarnival.com for details and schedule. Info, 253-7321. WINTER WILDLIFE CELEBRATION:

Wildlife enthusiasts explore exhibits and wintry trails with morning interactive guided tours and talks, followed by afternoon indoor and outdoor games, crafts, and a campfire with treats. Vermont Institute of Natural Science Nature Center, Quechee, SATURDAY, JAN. 13, 10 A.M.-5 P.M., regular museum admission, $13-15; free for children under 4. Info, 359-5000. TRICKY TRACKS: Junior naturalists investigate the comings and goings of feathered and furry friends. Ages 3-5 with adult companion. Green Mountain Audubon Center, Huntington, THURSDAY, JAN. 18, 9-10:30 A.M., $8-10 per adult-child pair; $4 per each additional child; preregister. Info, 434-3068.

WINTER WILDLIFE DETECTIVES: Young naturalists

learn about animals who are active in the colder months, then search for tracks, scat and pellets around the farm. Ages 5 and up with adult caregiver. Shelburne Farms, SATURDAY, JAN. 20, 10 A.M.-NOON., $3-7; preregister. Info, 985-8686. ASTRONOMY DAY: What’s up in the night sky? A full day of celestial activities covers topics for all starry-eyed ages. Montshire Museum of Science, Norwich, SATURDAY, JAN. 27, 10:30 A.M.-4:30 P.M., regular museum admission,

$12-15; free for children under 2. Info, 649-2200. WHAT DO OWLS EAT FOR LUNCH?:

Avian admirers make a mask, then discover what these birds devour by dissecting an owl pellet. Ages 5 and up with adult. Shelburne Farms, SATURDAY, JAN. 27, 10 A.M.-NOON., $3-7; preregister. Info, 985-8686. ICE FISHING FESTIVAL: Aspiring anglers learn the basics of this winter sport with expert volunteers. Free fish fry, snacks, hot drinks and a warming hut keep the day toasty. Hoyts Landing, Springfield, SUNDAY, JAN. 28, 11 A.M.-3 P.M.; preregistration available to avoid long lines. Info, nicole.meier@vermont.gov. FREE FULL MOON SNOWSHOE HIKE: Hot chocolate fuels walkers for a sparkling stroll beneath lunar light, with activities illuminating how wildlife survives the long winter nights. Snowshoes provided. North Branch Nature Center, Montpelier, WEDNESDAY, JAN. 31, 7-8:30 P.M., $5-10; preregistration recommended. Info, 229-6206.


SUBMIT YOUR FEBRUARY EVENTS FOR PRINT BY JANUARY 15 AT KIDSVT.COM OR CALENDAR@KIDSVT.COM. RUTLAND Babies & Toddlers Rock: Mini musicians ages 2 and under sing songs and engage in early literacy activities. Rutland Free Library, 10-10:30 a.m. Info, 773-1860. FREE WASHINGTON Capoeira: Families train together in this Afro-Brazilian martial art which combines dance, acrobatics and music. Zenbarn Studio, Waterbury, 4:30-5:30 p.m., $10. Info, 244-8134. Kids Yoga: Young yogis stretch for strength and flexibility, building focus and self-esteem. Ages 5-12. Zenbarn Studio, Waterbury, 3:30-4:15 p.m., $10. Info, 244-8134. WINDSOR Sugar-Cookie Decorating: Chefs-in-themaking embellish a batch of sweet treats. Ages 5-8. ArtisTree/Purple Crayon, South Pomfret, 3:30-5:30 p.m., $25; preregister. Info, 457-3500. Tassels and Beads: Young handicrafters fashion homemade jewelry gifts. Ages 9 and up. ArtisTree/Purple Crayon, South Pomfret, 3:30-5:30 p.m., $25; preregister. Info, 457-3500.

12 Tuesday Hanukkah begins. CHITTENDEN Creative Tuesdays: See December 5. Spanish Musical Kids: See December 5. STEAM Tuesdays: Eager youngsters engage with inventive science, technology, engineering, art and math projects. Check online for specific program details. Best for grades 1 and up. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 3:15-4:30 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE Winooski Lego Club: See December 5. FRANKLIN Sewing Club: See December 5.

WASHINGTON Maker Program: See December 5. WINDSOR Hand-Painted Wooden Ornaments: Fledging crafters color simple winter-themed presents. Ages 5-8. ArtisTree/Purple Crayon, South Pomfret, 3:30-5:30 p.m., $20; preregister. Info, 457-3500. Norwich Lego Tuesdays: See December 5.

13 Wednesday CHITTENDEN Dorothy’s List Group for Homeschooled Students: Books nominated for this esteemed award generate group discussion. Grades 4-8. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 9-10 a.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE Family Game Day: See December 6. Green Mountain Book Award Book Discussion for Homeschooled Students: High school homeschoolers spark lively conversation around their favorite pick of the year. Grades 9-12. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 9-10 a.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE

RUTLAND Killington Lego Club: See December 6. Rutland Winter Farmers Market: See December 6. ORANGE Holiday Artisans Market: See December 6. Randolph Lego Wednesdays: See December 6. WINDSOR Felted Holiday Ornaments: Little crafters wrap their fingers in wool and fabricate homemade holiday gifts. Ages 9 and up. ArtisTree/Purple Crayon, South Pomfret, 3:30-5:30 p.m., $25; preregister. Info, 457-3500. Paint Your Own Mug & Sweet Gift Set: Artists decorate a sturdy cup for that special someone and stock it with sweet goodies. Ages 5-8. ArtisTree/Purple Crayon, South Pomfret, 3:30-5:30 p.m., $25; preregister. Info, 457-3500. Sensory Lab for Tots: See December 6.

14 Thursday CALEDONIA Hardwick Lego Club: See December 7.

Red Clover Group for Homeschooled Students: Budding book lovers bury themselves in bibliophile activities. Grades K-3. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 9-10 a.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE

CHITTENDEN Audubon Homeschool Program: Homebased learners use the outdoor classroom to explore a variety of seasonal topics, from forests and trees to wildlife tracking. Ages 9-12. Parent attendance is optional. Green Mountain Audubon Center, Huntington, 9 a.m.-1 p.m., $20-25; preregister. Info, 434-3068.

Young Writers & Storytellers: Small ones spin their own yarns. Ages 5-11. Burnham Memorial Library, Colchester, 4-5 p.m. Info, 264-5660. FREE

Read to Van Gogh the Cat: Feline fanciers sign up for literacy sessions with a furry friend. Dorothy Alling Memorial Library, Williston, 3:30-4:30 p.m.; preregister for a reading slot. Info, 878-4918. FREE Spanish Story Time: Wee ones and caregivers cozy in for stories, songs and games en español. Ages 5 and under. CarpenterCarse Library, Hinesburg, 9:30-10 a.m. Info, 482-2878. FREE Ukulele Kids: Musical ones join Joe to sing and play to traditional children’s songs. All ages. Fletcher Free Library, Burlington, 10:3011:15 a.m. Info, 865-7216. FREE Williston Preschool Music: See December 7.

Read to Daisy the Therapy Dog: See December 6.

Yoga for Kids: See December 6.

See Dr. First videos “First With Kids” at uvmhealth.org.

Babytime: See December 7.

FRANKLIN Fit Moms: See December 6.

Colchester Lego Club: See December 7.

Lego Club: Budding builders construct creatively with colorful blocks. Ages 6 and up. Fairfax Community Library, 3-4 p.m.; preregister. Info, 849-2420. FREE

Read to Archie the Therapy Dog: See December 7.

Itty Bitty Public Skating: See December 7.

Winter Stories: Storyteller Linda Costello shares snow-themed folk tales. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 3:30-4 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE FRANKLIN Family STEAM Night: Moms, dads and kids team up for activities involving science, technology, engineering, art and/or math, with a theme this month of robots. Fairfax Community Library, 6:30-7:30 p.m.; preregister. Info, 849-2420. FREE Franklin Lego Thursdays: See December 7. Holiday Open House: Sleigh rides, songs, snacks and visits with Santa until 7 p.m. enliven the library. St. Albans Free Library, 5:30-7:30 p.m. Info, 524-1507. FREE Read to a Dog: See December 7. St. Albans Library Legos: Eager architects engage in construction projects with their peers. St. Albans Free Library, 3-5 p.m. Info, 524-1507. FREE

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

THE Y AND YOUR FAMILY – PERFECT TOGETHER! Two pools Birthday parties and family events Daily open gym and twice-weekly family gym Discount on swim lessons and birthday parties Free drop-in child care while you work out

KIDS VT

• • • • •

KIDSVT.COM

14 THURSDAY, P.42

Winter is the perfect time to join. Stop by today!

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CALENDAR DECEMBER 14 Thursday (cont.) LAMOILLE Pre-K Art Play: See December 7. ORANGE Holiday Artisans Market: See December 6.

WASHINGTON Books Come to Life: This Active Body-Active Brain class, led by a literacy professional, combines reading and movement. Babies through preschoolers. Waterbury Public Library, 10 a.m. Info, 244-7036. FREE

New Parents BOSOM BUDDIES TOO: Nursing mamas of toddlers and mobile wee ones socialize and swap supportive stories and advice with peers and professionals. Babies welcome. Central Vermont Medical Center, Berlin, FIRST TUESDAY OF EVERY MONTH, 5:30-7 P.M. Info, 371-4415. FREE EVOLUTION POSTNATAL YOGA:

Moms tote their pre-crawling kids to an all-levels flowing yoga class focused on bringing the body back to strength and alignment in a relaxed and nurturing environment. Evolution Prenatal & Family Yoga Center, Burlington,

TUESDAYS, 11 A.M.-12:15 P.M., THURSDAYS, 10:45-11:55 A.M., FRIDAYS, 8:15-9:15 A.M. & NOON-1 P.M., SUNDAYS, 12:15-1:30 P.M. THROUGH DEC. 17, $15; $130 for

a 10-class pass. Info, 899-0339. EVOLUTION PRENATAL YOGA:

KIDSVT.COM

Mothers-to-be build strength, stamina, comfort and a stronger connection to their baby. Evolution Prenatal & Family Yoga Center, Burlington, MONDAYS, 5:45-7

P.M., TUESDAYS, 4:15-5:30 P.M., WEDNESDAYS, 5:45-7 P.M., THURSDAYS, 12:30-1:30 P.M., FRIDAYS, 8:15-9:15 A.M., SATURDAYS, 11:30 A.M.-12:30 P.M., SUNDAYS, 10-11:30 A.M. THROUGH DEC. 18, $15 or

$130 for 10-class pass. Info, 899-0339.

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

MOM AND BABY YOGA:

Brand-new mamas and their littles relax, stretch and bond. Followed by a free mothers’ gathering at 11:30 a.m. Embodied, Montpelier,

TUESDAYS, 10:30-11:30 A.M. THROUGH DEC. 19, $11. Info,

223-5302.

PRENATAL METHOD PRENATAL YOGA: Women prepare for

birth through yoga, with a focus on strengthening the body and mind. See prenatalmethod.com for class descriptions. Prenatal Method Studio, Burlington, MONDAYS,

12:15-1:15 P.M., TUESDAYS, 4:30-5:30 P.M., WEDNESDAYS, 12:15-1:15 P.M., THURSDAYS, 4:30-5:30 P.M., SATURDAYS, 10:3011:30 A.M. THROUGH DEC. 18, $15.

Info, 829-0211.

History for Homeschoolers: Eager learners launch into history-related activities organized around monthly themes. Ages 7-12. Check vermonthistory.org for specific details. Vermont History Museum, Montpelier, 1-3 p.m., $6.50-8; preregister. Space is limited. Info, 828-1413.

HOW TO BREASTFEED PRENATAL CLASS: Expectant mamas

and their partners learn the basics of breastfeeding, how to get off to the best start with their baby and where to find assistance when needed. Central Vermont Medical Center, Berlin, FIRST THURSDAY

OF EVERY MONTH, 8-9:30 A.M., AND FOURTH TUESDAY OF EVERY MONTH, 4:30-6 P.M.; preregister.

Info, 371-4415. FREE

HYDE PARK BABY CHAT: Parents

with babies mingle, learn more about developmental needs and expectations, and have the opportunity to ask questions of a maternal health specialist. Lanpher Memorial Library, Hyde Park, FIRST THURSDAY OF EVERY MONTH, 10-11:30 A.M.

PRENATAL YOGA: Expectant mamas ease pregnancy through breath work, poses and preparation for labor and delivery in a safe and supportive atmosphere. Iyengar Yoga Center of Vermont, Burlington, TUESDAYS, 4:15-5:15 P.M. THROUGH DEC. 26, $20. Info, 379-7389.

Info, 888-5229.

PRENATAL YOGA: Moms-to-be

OF EVERY MONTH, 10-11:30 A.M.

stretch and bend. Embodied, Montpelier, TUESDAYS, 6-7:15 P.M. THROUGH DEC. 19, $16 per drop-in class. Info, 778-0300.

BURLINGTON EARLY MONTHS INFANT MASSAGE: This mother-

infant group includes baby massage and postpartum new mama support. The Janet S. Munt Family Room, Burlington, WEDNESDAYS, 11 A.M.-NOON THROUGH DEC. 20.

Info, 862-2121.

MIDDLEBURY LA LECHE LEAGUE MEETING AND PLAYGROUP:

Families with infants and toddlers socialize and swap nursing stories. Junebug Mother and Child, Middlebury,

FIRST WEDNESDAY OF EVERY MONTH, 10 A.M. FREE ESSEX LA LECHE LEAGUE:

Moms bring their bitty ones to a discussion of parenting and breastfeeding. Siblings welcome. Essex Free Library, Essex Junction, FIRST

THURSDAY OF EVERY MONTH, 6:30-8 P.M. FREE

MORRISVILLE BABY CHAT:

Parents with babies socialize, learn more about developmental needs and expectations, and have the opportunity to ask questions of a maternal health specialist. Lamoille Family Center, Morrisville, SECOND SATURDAY Info, 888-5229.

BURLINGTON LA LECHE LEAGUE:

New moms bring their babies and questions to a breastfeeding support group. Older children welcome. Lending library available. Fletcher Free Library, Burlington, SECOND

TUESDAY OF EVERY MONTH, 10:15 A.M. Info, 985-8228. FREE

LA LECHE LEAGUE OF THE NORTHEAST KINGDOM:

Expectant, novice and experienced moms join nursing experts for advice and support. Enter through the children’s section of the library. Siblings welcome. St. Johnsbury Athenaeum,

SECOND TUESDAY OF EVERY MONTH, 10:30 A.M.-NOON. Info,

720-272-8841. FREE

CENTRAL VERMONT NURSING BEYOND A YEAR: Mothers

discuss the joys and challenges of breastfeeding, including nighttime parenting, weaning, healthy eating habits and setting limits, in a supportive setting. Good Beginnings, Montpelier, THIRD FRIDAY OF EVERY MONTH, 9:30-11:30 A.M.

Info, 999-7143. FREE

KIDS VT

NEW PARENTS PLAYGROUP:

42

Families with very small ones support each other, with assistance from staff. Birth Journeys, Burlington, FIRST AND THIRD FRIDAY OF EVERY MONTH, 10-11:30 A.M.,

$3 suggested donation. Info, 233-7909.

TODDLER LA LECHE LEAGUE MEETING: Moms who are

nursing beyond a year share stories and solutions to nighttime parenting, mealtime tips, biting, weaning and other topics. St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church, Middlebury, THIRD MONDAY OF EVERY MONTH, 1:30-2:30 P.M. THROUGH DEC. 18.

Info, 388-0363. FREE

BREASTFEEDING CAFÉ: Mamas

nurse their babies, chat and ask for answers from a certified lactation consultant. Pregnant women, supportive dads and older siblings welcome. Ilsley Public Library, Middlebury, THIRD TUESDAY OF EVERY MONTH, 11:30 A.M.-1 P.M. Info,

349-3825. FREE

BREASTFEEDING FAMILIES GROUP: Nursing moms (and

Windows on Waldorf: Prospective students and their families tour this grades 1-8 school. Student work showcases the core curriculum. Orchard Valley Waldorf School, East Montpelier, 6:30-8 p.m.; preregister by noon on the previous day. Info, 456-7400. FREE WINDSOR High-Tech Holiday Decorations: Imaginative kiddos create sparkling gifts using EL-wire — a decorative, flexible wire that glows like neon. Ages 9 and up. ArtisTree/Purple Crayon, South Pomfret, 3:30-5:30 p.m., $20; preregister. Info, 457-3500. Nature-Inspired Ornaments: Crafty children make many holiday decorations using nests, acorns, shells, wool, pinecones, feathers and more. Ages 5-8. ArtisTree/Purple Crayon, South Pomfret, 3:30-5:30 p.m., $24; preregister. Info, 457-3500.

15 Friday CHITTENDEN Family Gym: See December 8. Family Wheel Drop-In: See December 8. Kids Music With Linda ‘Tickle Belly’ Bassick: See December 8.

supportive dads, too!) gather for snacks and advice. Church of the Nazarene, Johnson,

Lego Fun: Budding builders bring out the blocks. Children under age 8 must be accompanied by a responsible caregiver. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 3-4:30 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE

888-3470. FREE

Music With Raph: Melody lovers of all ages play and sing. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 10-10:30 a.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE

THIRD WEDNESDAY OF EVERY MONTH, 11 A.M.-1 P.M. Info,

LA LECHE LEAGUE OF CENTRAL VERMONT: Breastfeeding

mamas swap stories and support each other, with a professional available for consultation. Good Beginnings, Montpelier, THIRD THURSDAY

OF EVERY MONTH, 9:30-11:30 A.M.

Info, 999-7143. FREE

JOHNSON BABY CHAT: Parents

with babies mingle, learn more about developmental needs and expectations, and have the opportunity to ask questions of a maternal health specialist. Church of the Nazarene, Johnson, FOURTH TUESDAY OF EVERY MONTH, 10-11:30 A.M.

Info, 888-5229. FREE

MOMMY GROUP: Breastfeeding

peer counselor Angela Scavo hosts mamas and answers questions in a relaxed setting. Middlebury Recreation Center, FOURTH WEDNESDAY OF EVERY MONTH, 9:30-10:30 A.M. Info,

349-9084. FREE

BOSOM BUDDIES: New and

expectant mothers, babies, and supportive grandmas rally in a relaxed evening, during which peers and professionals answer mothering and breastfeeding questions. Central Vermont Medical Center, Berlin, FIRST MONDAY

OF EVERY MONTH, 5:30-7 P.M.

Info, 371-4415. FREE

Very Merry Teen Open Mic: High school students share singing, guitar playing, dancing, standup comedy and other skills — or simply cheer on the performance in a relaxed setting. Grades 9-12. Very Merry Theatre, Burlington, 7-9 p.m., $5 donation. Info, 355-1461. LAMOILLE Candy-Cane-Making Demo: See December 8. ORANGE Holiday Artisans Market: See December 6. ORLEANS Lego Club: See December 8. WINDSOR Spa in a Jar: Small ones make bath bombs, sugar scrubs and eye pillows for sweet-smelling holiday gifts, packaged in personalized mason jars. Ages 5-12. ArtisTree/ Purple Crayon, South Pomfret, 3:30-5:30 p.m., $20; preregister. Info, 457-3500.

16 Saturday ADDISON Middlebury Winter Farmers Market: Locally produced crafts, cheeses, breads, veggies and more vie for spots in shoppers’ totes. Middlebury VFW, 9 a.m.-2:30 p.m. CALEDONIA Caledonia Winter Farmers Market: Freshly baked goods, veggies, handmade crafts, meats and maple syrups figure prominently in displays of Vermont wares. St. Johnsbury Welcome Center, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Info, 592-3088. FREE


SUBMIT YOUR FEBRUARY EVENTS FOR PRINT BY JANUARY 15 AT KIDSVT.COM OR CALENDAR@KIDSVT.COM. CHITTENDEN Burlington Winter Farmers Market: See December 9.

Holiday Movie: Film buffs settle in for a seasonal flick with popcorn and drinks. St. Albans Free Library, 1 p.m. Info, 524-1507.

Drag Story Time: Local drag queens Nikki Champagne and Emoji Nightmare share stories capturing the imagination and play of childhood’s gender fluidity and offer children positive queer role models. Recommended for ages 3 and up, but all ages are welcome. See dragqueenstoryhour.org for more info. Fletcher Free Library, Burlington, 10:30 a.m. Info, 865-7216. FREE

FREE

Dutch Story Time: Little library lovers learn stories, songs and traditions from Holland and assemble a windmill craft. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 10:30-11 a.m. Info, 878-6956.

ORANGE Holiday Artisans Market: See December 6.

FREE

EvoKids Saturday Drop-In Yoga: See December 9. Family Art Saturday: Families drop in and ignite their imaginations with a current exhibit, then get hands-on with an artistic endeavor. BCA Center, Burlington, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Info, 865-7166. FREE John Churchman: The coauthor of The Sheepover shares his newest release, A Farm for Maisie, and amuses an admiring audience with his two sheepdog stars. Dorothy Alling Memorial Library, Williston, 11 a.m.-noon. Info, 878-4918. FREE Movies at the Library: Families snuggle down, see a big-screen PG-rated flick and savor snacks. Milton Public Library, 1 p.m. Info, 893-4644. FREE Read to Cleo the Therapy Dog: Canine and reading enthusiasts visit with a personable pooch. Milton Public Library, 10 a.m.; preregister. Info, 893-4644. FREE Saturday Drama Club: See December 9. Webby’s Art Studio: See December 9.

ORLEANS Family Film and Meal: Sponsored by Wonder Arts, families feast on free mac and cheese, veggies, and apple pie, then screen a kidfriendly movie starting at 6 p.m. Sterling College, Craftsbury Common, 5:30-7:30 p.m., donations appreciated. Info, 533-9370. WASHINGTON Capital City Winter Farmers Market: See December 9, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Craft Party: EarthWalk Vermont invites the community for an afternoon of natural crafting, including candles, cards, scented pillows, decorations, wreaths and more. A bake sale and live music add to the merriment. Christ Church, Montpelier, 1-4 p.m., $10; $25 per family. Info, 454-8500. Touch of Vermont Holiday Gift Market: More than 45 local vendors peddle their pottery, photography and other handmade items at a market also featuring artisan foodstuffs and sweets. Montpelier City Hall, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Info, 310-1725. FREE WINDSOR Norwich Winter Farmers Market: See December 9.

17 Sunday CHITTENDEN Drop-In Holiday Cookie Decorating: Youngsters dress up winter-themed sugar cookies with homemade frosting while parents sip coffee and listen to live music. City Market/Onion River Co-op South End, Burlington, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Info, 540-6400. FREE Essex Open Gym: See December 10. Family Gym: See December 8. Family Movie: Viewers enjoy a familyfriendly flick while feasting on free popcorn. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE LAMOILLE Candy-Cane-Making Demo: See December 8. ORANGE Holiday Artisans Market: See December 6.

18 Monday CHITTENDEN Chess Club: Players of all ages pursue a game of strategy. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 3:30-4:30 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE Colchester Preschool Music: See December 11. Essex Lego Club: See December 11. Holiday Story Time: See December 11.

RUTLAND Babies & Toddlers Rock: See December 11. WASHINGTON Capoeira: See December 11. Kids Yoga: See December 11. WINDSOR Felted Soaps: Small hands shape oldfashioned, sweet-smelling homemade gifts. Ages 5-8. ArtisTree/Purple Crayon, South Pomfret, 3:30-5:30 p.m., $20; preregister. Info, 457-3500.

19 Tuesday CHITTENDEN Carols & Cookies: Song lovers share homemade sweets and sing together. Essex Free Library, Essex Junction, 6:30-7:30 p.m. Info, 879-0313. FREE Crafternoon: Creative kids welcome winter with a solstice project. Ages 3-10; ages 5 and under must be accompanied by an adult. Carpenter-Carse Library, Hinesburg, 2:15-3:15 p.m.; preregister. Info, 482-2878. FREE Creative Tuesdays: See December 5. Read to Willy Wonka the Chocolate Lab: See December 5. STEAM Tuesdays: See December 12. Winooski Lego Club: See December 5. WASHINGTON Maker Program: See December 5.

Itty Bitty Public Skating: See December 7. Stories With Megan: See December 11. Williston Preschool Music: See December 7. 11 a.m. 19 TUESDAY, P.44

Webby’s Art Studio

Memberships make great gifts!

Saturdays—and EVERY DAY during the Holiday week— are for art-making at the Museum! Kids create holiday cards, snowflakes, Arctic animals, and more. 11 a.m.–3 p.m. Get here!

KIDS VT

shelburnemuseum.org

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

RUTLAND Rutland Winter Farmers Market: See December 6, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

See Dr. First videos “First With Kids” at uvmhealth.org.

KIDSVT.COM

FRANKLIN Holiday Confections Class for Kids: Junior bakers bust out sweet treats to take home. Adult caregiver required. Barlow Street Community Center, St. Albans, 10:30 a.m.noon., $20-30; preregister. Info, 524-1500.

LAMOILLE Candy-Cane-Making Demo: See December 8, 11 a.m. & 2 p.m.

FRANKLIN Lab Girls: Hands-on scientific experiments and explorations empower young women. Grades 4-8. Fairfax Community Library, 3-4 p.m.; preregister. Info, 849-2420. FREE

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CALENDAR

DECEMBER/JANUARY

19 Tuesday (cont.) WINDSOR Miniature Holiday Houses: Aspiring artists use multiple materials — including cardboard, cotton “snow,” beads, fabric, specialty papers, pinecones and birch bark — to make a mini centerpiece or mantel decoration. Ages 5-8. ArtisTree/Purple Crayon, South Pomfret, 3:30-5:30 p.m., $20; preregister. Info, 457-3500. Norwich Lego Tuesdays: See December 5.

20 Wednesday Hanukkah ends. CHITTENDEN Chess Club: Smart players check out this strategy game and improve their skills with rooks, pawns and knights. All ages and experience levels. Dorothy Alling Memorial Library, Williston, 5:30-7 p.m. Info, 878-4918. FREE

Burlington Mother Up! Monthly Meet-Up: Families discuss the realities of climate change, what that means on a local level, and how to transition to a safer and healthier world. Vegetarian meal and childcare for ages 3 and under provided. Unitarian Universalist Society, Burlington, 5:30-7:30 p.m., RSVP requested. Info, 881-2270. FREE Colchester Lego Club: See December 7. Itty Bitty Public Skating: See December 7. Read to Archie the Therapy Dog: See December 7. Williston Preschool Music: See December 7. FRANKLIN Family Cookie Decorating: Moms and dads learn the basics of piping frosting on gingerbread cookies, while small ones freestyle their own sweets. Fairfax Community Library, 6-7 p.m.; preregister. Info, 849-2420. FREE Franklin Lego Thursdays: See December 7. ORANGE Holiday Artisans Market: See December 6.

FRANKLIN Fit Moms: See December 6. STEM Club: Science-y types challenge their imaginations with themed activities. Ages 6 and up. Fairfax Community Library, 3-4 p.m.; preregister. Info, 849-2420. FREE RUTLAND Killington Lego Club: See December 6.

KIDS VT

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

KIDSVT.COM

Rutland Winter Farmers Market: See December 6.

44

ORANGE Holiday Artisans Market: See December 6. Randolph Lego Wednesdays: See December 6. WASHINGTON Kids’ Movies: Cinema lovers of all ages take in a short flick before community dinner is served. Jaquith Public Library, Marshfield, 5:30 p.m. Info, 426-3581. FREE Movie Night: An off-the-beaten-track flick fascinates viewers. Jaquith Public Library, Marshfield, 7 p.m. Info, 426-3581. FREE WINDSOR Felted Holiday Ornaments: Wee crafters wrap their fingers in wool and fabricate homemade holiday gifts. Ages 5-8. ArtisTree/ Purple Crayon, South Pomfret, 3:30-5:30 p.m., $25; preregister. Info, 457-3500. Sensory Lab for Tots: See December 6.

21 Thursday CALEDONIA Hardwick Lego Club: See December 7. CHITTENDEN Babytime: See December 7.

Hand-Painted Wooden Ornaments: Fledging crafters color simple winter-themed presents. Ages 9 and up. ArtisTree/Purple Crayon, South Pomfret, 3:30-5:30 p.m., $20; preregister. Info, 457-3500.

22 Friday CHITTENDEN Dungeons & Dragons: Players embark on invented adventures, equipped with their problem-solving skills. Grades 6 and up. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE Essex Story Time: Budding bibliophiles listen to picture books and play with puppets. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 10-10:30 a.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE Kids Music With Linda ‘Tickle Belly’ Bassick: See December 8.

Little One & Me Circle Time: Tiny tykes team up for movement, songs, play and snacks. Ages 5 and under. Jericho Town Library, 10-11 a.m. Info, 899-4686. FREE

Yoga for Kids: See December 6.

WINDSOR Gingerbread Houses: Mini makers design and decorate sweet edible men and dwellings. Ages 5-8. ArtisTree/Purple Crayon, South Pomfret, 3:30-5:30 p.m., $20; preregister. Info, 457-3500.

Family Gym: See December 8.

Family Game Day: See December 6.

Read to Daisy the Therapy Dog: See December 6.

SUBMIT YOUR FEBRUARY EVENTS FOR PRINT BY JANUARY 15 AT KIDSVT.COM OR CALENDAR@KIDSVT.COM.

Ongoing Exhibits DOWNTOWN MIDDLEBURY ‘I SPY 10 TINY REINDEER’: Window shoppers search out 10 wee original illustrations by renowned children’s author Ashley Wolff and enter to win $100 in Middlebury Money. Rules and contest details displayed in the Vermont Bookshop window. Through December 31. FREE

ECHO LEAHY CENTER FOR LAKE CHAMPLAIN, BURLINGTON ‘INNOVATION PLAYGROUND’: In this exhibit

embracing lifelong play as a tool for technological, social and artistic invention, visitors of all ages unleash their imaginations by building with giant blue blocks, exploring virtual galaxies in a cardboard spaceship and experimenting in a fully equipped maker space. Regular museum admission, $11.50-14.50; free for children under 3. Through January 15.

‘MY SKY’: Astronomy lovers explore the sun, moon and stars in an immersive exhibit which encourages scientific skills such as observing, communicating, noticing patterns, predicting, imagining and more. January 27 through May 6.

HENRY SHELDON MUSEUM OF VERMONT HISTORY, MIDDLEBURY ‘DRAW ME A STORY‚ TELL ME A TALE’:

Illustrations and artwork from 20 Green Mountain State authors and artists — including Mary Azarian’s garden-inspired alphabet drawings and Phoebe Stone’s colorful animals — delight museum visitors. Through January 13.

MONTSHIRE MUSEUM OF SCIENCE, NORWICH ‘PLAYING AROUND’: Curious explorers of all ages dig into scientific concepts through playing. Activities include an inside examination of classic childhood toys — jack-in-the-box, Hokey Pokey Elmo and Etch A Sketch — and creative building with Big Blue Blocks and Tinker Toys. Through March 25. ‘THE LIGHT AROUND US’: Inquisitive visitors learn about light by experimenting with lenses and mirrors, changing the color of everyday objects, separating white light into colors, discovering what lies beyond the visible spectrum, and more. Through May 2.

SHELBURNE MUSEUM, SHELBURNE ‘SWEET TOOTH: THE ART OF DESSERT’:

This mixed-media exhibit is a real treat, exploring our insatiable desire for sugary stuff through paintings, prints, sculptures and more. $5-10; free for children under 5. Through February 18. VERMONT FOLKLIFE CENTER, MIDDLEBURY ‘GINGERBREAD HOUSE COMPETITION’:

Visitors feast their eyes on small abodes composed of sweet treats, with a theme of The Wizard of Oz. Through December 22. VERMONT HISTORY MUSEUM, MONTPELIER ‘FAMILY TRAITS’: Vermonter and artist

Stanley Lyndes uses his experience growing up on a multigenerational farm to capture the unique folklore of family life through art. Through January 26.

Live-Action Role Play: LARPers create characters and plots in an amazing and imaginary adventure. Grades 6 and up. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 3-5 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE Music With Robert: See December 8. Preschool Yoga with Danielle: See December 8. LAMOILLE Candy-Cane-Making Demo: See December 8. ORANGE Holiday Artisans Market: See December 6. ORLEANS Lego Club: See December 8.

23 Saturday ADDISON Middlebury Winter Farmers Market: See December 16. LAMOILLE Candy-Cane-Making Demo: See December 8, 11 a.m. & 2 p.m. RUTLAND Rutland Winter Farmers Market: See December 6, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. ORANGE Holiday Artisans Market: See December 6.

24 Sunday CHITTENDEN Family Gym: See December 8. ORANGE Holiday Artisans Market: See December 6, noon-3 p.m.

25 Monday Merry Christmas!

26 Tuesday CHITTENDEN Creative Tuesdays: See December 5. Webby’s Art Studio: See December 9, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.

27 Wednesday CHITTENDEN Post-It Art: Junior artists work in cooperative teams to create a wall mosaic. Ages 8 and up. Essex Free Library, Essex Junction, 10:3011:30 a.m. & 1-2 p.m. Info, 879-0313. FREE Traveling Storyteller Puppet Show: Youngsters delight in a live and literacy-centered performance. Milton Public Library, 10 a.m. Info, 893-4644. FREE Webby’s Art Studio: See December 9, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Wii Love School Vacation: Kids on school break take it easy with Wii Sports Resort, MarioKart and more. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 2-4 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE Young Writers & Storytellers: See December 13.


FRANKLIN Stuffed-Animal Sleepover: Small ones drop off furry friends Friday, hear a story and say goodnight. Saturday morning, kiddies savor a pancake breakfast and see a slide show of their stuffies’ overnight adventures. Fairfax Community Library, 4-5:30 p.m. Info, 849-2420. FREE RUTLAND Rutland Winter Farmers Market: See December 6.

28 Thursday CHITTENDEN Babytime: See December 7. Colchester Lego Club: See December 7. Reindeer Games: Active youngsters have a blast with pin-the-nose-on-Rudolph, antler ring toss and other themed activities. Essex Free Library, Essex Junction, 10:30-11:30 a.m. & 1-2 p.m. Info, 879-0313. FREE School Break Movie: A crowd cozies in for a PG-rated flick. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 1:30-4 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE Ukulele Kids: See December 14. Webby’s Art Studio: See December 9, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Williston Preschool Music: See December 7. FRANKLIN Pizza and Movie Night: Families snuggle together for a superhero screening and supper. Fairfax Community Library, 5-7 p.m.; preregister. Info, 849-2420. FREE Stuffed-Animal Sleepover: See December 27, 9:30-10:30 a.m.

29 Friday

Family Gym: See December 8.

Kids Music With Linda ‘Tickle Belly’ Bassick: See December 8. Music With Robert: See December 8. Webby’s Art Studio: See December 9, 11 a.m.-3 p.m.

30 Saturday ADDISON Middlebury Winter Farmers Market: See December 16. CHITTENDEN Webby’s Art Studio: See December 9.

a Rutland Creative Economy Initiative

CHITTENDEN Family Gym: See December 8. First Night Burlington: Circus arts, theater, music, the Church Street Dancing Dragons Parade at 6 p.m., and fireworks at both 6:45 p.m. and midnight make for a fun-filled New Year’s Eve celebration. Downtown Burlington, 11 a.m.-midnight., $5-22; free for children under 3; $42 family pack for two adults and two children available until December 24. Additional fees required for some venues. Info, 863-6005.

After school Art Enrichment Drawing Classes for K-6 Young Rembrandts teaches drawing skills using a see-touch-do method that all children can succeed with, learn from and love!

ORLEANS New Year’s Eve Fireworks: Boom! Fireworks explode over the mountain. See jaypeakresort.com for various party options. Jay Peak Resort, 9 p.m. Info, 988-2611. FREE

Students Can Expect - A new exciting lesson every week - Improved core art skills - To have fun! Parents Can Expect - Increased attention to detail - Improved fine motor skills

WASHINGTON Montpelier New Year’s Eve: The capital city rings in the New Year with a 5K run at 2 p.m., followed by a magic show and fireworks at 7:30 p.m. on the Statehouse lawn. Various downtown locations, Montpelier, magic show, $5 or free for children under 5; road race, $10-15 or $40 per family. Info, 223-9604.

To learn more or to find a class in your area, link to:

YOUNGREMBRANDTS.COM

No afterschool drawing classes at your school or in your community? Find out how easy it is to bring our awardwinning, educational, kid-friendly focused program to your location. Contact your local program director, Michelle Kessler at 802.363.7522 or michelle.kessler@youngrembrandts.com

JANUARY

1 Monday

Happy New Year!

Untitled-2 1

CHITTENDEN FirstRun: New Year’s Day 5K: At a new location this year, families greet 2018 with their best foot forward at this jaunty costumed race. Ages 4 and up. Champlain Valley Expo, Essex Junction, registration and packet pickup, 9-10:45 a.m.; kids’ fun one- to two-mile runs, 10:30 a.m.; 5K, 11 a.m.; after-party, 11:30 a.m., $22.5036; check website for preregistration discounts; fun run preregistration free; $5 on race day. Info, 863-8412.

10/26/17 10:26 AM Young Rembrandts

Untitled-2 1

8/25/17 11:43 AM

Planning a kids event?

List your event for free in the Kids VT monthy calendar. Submit your info by the 15th of the month online at kidsvt.com or to calendar@kidsvt.com

WASHINGTON Capoeira: See December 11. Kids Yoga: See December 11.

2 Tuesday CHITTENDEN Library Elementary Event Planners: See December 5.

calendar

CHITTENDEN

S ol i d Wa st e D i st ri c t

2 TUESDAY, P.46

12v-calendar.indd 1

7/29/11 Untitled-72 12:35 PM 1

KIDS VT

RUTLAND Rutland Winter Farmers Market: See December 6, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

CALEDONIA First Night St. Johnsbury: Revelers ring in the New Year with more than 200 performers in 16 venues, food, family crafts, fireworks and more. Downtown St. Johnsbury, 4 p.m., $10-22. Info, 748-2600.

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

Happy Noon Day Party: Mini merrymakers and their parents ring in 2018 with games, crafts, snacks and a special countdown at noon. Ages 3-8. Milton Public Library, 10:30 a.m.; preregister. Info, 893-4644. FREE

W nderfeet Kids’ Museum

31 Sunday

KIDSVT.COM

CHITTENDEN Comics and Cocoa: Young literature lovers sip hot beverages and savor sweet treats while discussing Raina Telgemeier’s Ghosts. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 2-3 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE

See Dr. First videos “First With Kids” at uvmhealth.org.

45

11/30/17 10:33 AM


CALENDAR JANUARY 2 Tuesday (cont.) Winooski Lego Club: See December 5. FRANKLIN Adoption Support Group: See December 5. RUTLAND Chess Club: See December 5. WASHINGTON Maker Program: See December 5.

3 Wednesday CHITTENDEN Family Game Day: See December 6. Read to Daisy the Therapy Dog: See December 6, 3-4 p.m. Reading Buddies: See December 6. FRANKLIN Fit Moms: See December 6.

RUTLAND Killington Lego Club: See December 6.

Babytime: See December 7.

Rutland Winter Farmers Market: See December 6.

Itty Bitty Public Skating: See December 7.

ORANGE Randolph Lego Wednesdays: See December 6. WASHINGTON Kid Parent Yoga: Kids and caretakers warm up individually and then partake in partnerbased practices in a playful setting. Ages 4-11. Om Studio, Montpelier, 3:30-4:15 p.m., $15 per adult-child pair; $50 for five weeks; preregister. Info, 324-1737.

TUESDAY

Aldrich Public Library, 10:30 a.m. Info, 476-7550.

Public Library, 10:30 a.m. Info, 582-9942.

KIDSVT.COM

FRANKLIN STORY TIME: Haston Library, 10:30 a.m. Info, 285-6505. HYDE PARK STORY TIME: Lanpher Memorial Library, 6 p.m. Info, 888-4628. NORTHFIELD CHILDREN’S STORY TIME: Brown Public Library, 10-11

a.m. Info, 485-4621.

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

RICHMOND BABY LAP TIME:

Richmond Free Library, 10:30 a.m. Info, 434-3036. SHELBURNE STORY TIME: Pierson

Library, 10:30 a.m. Info, 985-5124.

ST. ALBANS MOVEMENT & MUSIC STORY HOUR: St. Albans Free

Library, 10:30 a.m. Info, 524-1507.

STOWE STORY TIMES FOR 2- TO 3-YEAR-OLDS: Stowe Free Library,

10:15-11:15 a.m. Info, 253-6145. WAITSFIELD STORY TIME: Joslin

Memorial Library, 10:30 a.m. Info, 496-4205.

WATERBURY BABY & TODDLER STORY TIME: Waterbury Public

KIDS VT

Library, 10 a.m. Info, 244-7036.

46

WOODSTOCK BABY STORY TIME:

Norman Williams Public Library, 10:30 a.m. Info, 457-2295.

Williston Preschool Music: See December 7. FRANKLIN Fairfax PJ Story Time: See December 7. Franklin Lego Thursdays: See December 7. St. Albans Circle of Parents for Foster & Adoptive Families: See December 7.

ALBURGH STORY HOUR: Alburgh

Family Gym: See December 8. GroovaRoo: Moms, dads, caregivers and moms-to-be bust a move in this beginners’ class led by certified babywearing dance teacher Kadina. For children 6 weeks to toddlers. Please wear comfortable exercise clothes and shoes; bring water and an approved baby carrier. Fletcher Free Library, Burlington, 10-10:45 a.m. Info, 865-7216. FREE Kids Music With Linda ‘Tickle Belly’ Bassick: See December 8.

Music With Robert: See December 8. SWANTON STORY TIME: Swanton

MONTPELIER STORY TIME: KelloggHubbard Library, 10:30 a.m. Info, 223-3338.

VERGENNES STORY TIME: Bixby

WILLISTON STORY TIME: Dorothy Alling Memorial Library, 10:30 a.m. Info, 878-4918.

WARREN PRESCHOOL STORY TIME:

Public Library, 10 a.m. Info, 893-4644.

WOODSTOCK PRESCHOOL STORY TIME: Norman Williams Public

Public Library, 10-11 a.m. Info, 868-7656.

Memorial Library, 10:30 a.m. Info, 877-2211.

Warren Public Library, 10 a.m. Info, 595-2582.

RANDOLPH TODDLER STORY TIME:

Kimball Public Library, 10:30-11 a.m. Info, 728-5073.

RICHMOND EARLY BIRD MATH STORY TIME: Richmond Free

WEDNESDAY

HINESBURG YOUNGSTERS STORY TIME: See Tuesday.

SOUTH BURLINGTON PAJAMARAMA:

BARNES & NOBLE STORY TIME:

10-10:45 a.m.

HIGHGATE MUSIC & MOVEMENT STORY TIME: See Tuesday.

NORTHFIELD CHILDREN’S STORY TIME: See Monday.

SHELBURNE MUSICAL STORY TIME:

STOWE BABY & TODDLER STORY TIME: Stowe Free Library, 10:15-

Free Library, 10-10:45 a.m. Info, 773-1860.

HYDE PARK STORY TIME: See

EAST BARRE STORY TIME: East

LYNDONVILLE STORY TIME: See

ST. ALBANS MOVEMENT & MUSIC STORY HOUR: See Monday.

MARSHFIELD STORY TIME & PLAYGROUP: Jaquith Public

WESTFORD STORY TIME: Westford Public Library, 11 a.m. Info, 878-5639.

9:10-9:30 a.m. Info, 878-6956.

Library, 10-11:30 a.m. Info, 426-3581.

ESSEX JUNCTION PRESCHOOL STORY TIME: Brownell Library,

MILTON RHYTHM & MOVEMENT TODDLER STORY TIME: Milton

Wednesdays, 10-10:45 a.m. Info, 878-6956.

Public Library, 10 a.m. Info, 893-4644.

FAIRFAX STORY HOUR: Fairfax

NORWICH WORD PLAY STORY TIME:

Community Library, 9:30-10:30 a.m. Info, 849-2420.

Norwich Public Library, 10:30-11 a.m. Info, 649-1184.

HIGHGATE MUSIC & MOVEMENT STORY TIME: Highgate Public

QUECHEE STORY TIME: Quechee

Library, 10 a.m. Info, 868-3970.

Public Library, 10 a.m. Info, 295-1232.

HINESBURG YOUNGSTERS STORY TIME: Carpenter-Carse Library,

RANDOLPH PRESCHOOL STORY TIME: Kimball Public Library, 11

9:30-10 a.m. Info, 482-2878.

a.m. Info, 728-5073.

LYNDONVILLE STORY TIME:

RICHMOND STORY TIME: Richmond

Free Library, 10 a.m. Info, 434-3036.

STORY & YOGA TIME WITH ANGEL:

Norman Williams Public Library, 10:30 a.m.-noon, Info, 457-2295.

Barnes & Noble, 7 p.m. Info, 864-8001.

ST. JOHNSBURY STORY TIME: St. Johnsbury Athenaeum, 10:30 a.m. Info, 748-8291.

Monday, 10 a.m.

Tuesday, 10:30 a.m.

Library, 11 a.m. Info, 434-3036.

RUTLAND STORY TIME: Rutland

Craftsbury Public Library, 10 a.m. Info, 586-9683.

Cobleigh Public Library, 10 a.m. Info, 626-5475.

MONTPELIER STORY TIME: See

Tuesday.

THURSDAY

Pierson Library, 10:30 a.m. Info, 985-5124.

ESSEX JUNCTION BABY & TODDLER STORY TIME: Brownell Library,

MILTON PRESCHOOL STORY TIME:

Milton Public Library, 10 a.m. Info, 893-4644.

Memorial Library, 10:30 a.m. Info, 453-2366.

ESSEX JUNCTION PRESCHOOL STORY TIME: See Tuesday,

Barre Branch Library, 10 a.m. Info, 476-5118.

Lincoln Library, 10:30 a.m. Info, 453-2665.

Library, 10:30-11:15 a.m. Info, 457-2295.

COLCHESTER TODDLER STORY TIME:

CRAFTSBURY STORY TIME:

LINCOLN STORY TIME:

BRISTOL STORY TIME: Lawrence

Barnes & Noble, 11 a.m. Info, 864-8001.

Burnham Memorial Library, 10:30 a.m.; preregister. Info, 264-5660.

CHITTENDEN Baby Yoga: Mamas and papas stretch themselves and their wee ones, strengthening general health and gross motor skills. Ages 1 and under. Jericho Town Library, 3-4 p.m.; preregistration required. Info, 899-4686. FREE

MILTON INFANT STORY TIME: Milton

BARRE CHILDREN’S STORY HOUR:

See Monday.

5 Friday

Magic: The Gathering: Planeswalkers seek knowledge and glory in this trading-card game. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 6-8 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE

CHITTENDEN Audubon Homeschool Program: See December 7.

MONDAY

Free Library, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Info, 879-0313.

Read to Archie the Therapy Dog: See December 7.

CALEDONIA Hardwick Lego Club: See December 7.

Early literacy skills get special attention during these readaloud sessions. Some locations provide additional activities such as music, crafts or foreign-language instruction. Most story times follow the school calendar. Contact the organizers for site-specific details.

ESSEX DROP-IN STORY TIME: Essex

Kids Concert with Mr. Ethan: See December 7.

WASHINGTON Kid Parent Yoga: See January 3.

4 Thursday

Story Times

BARRE CHILDREN’S STORY HOUR:

Food for Thought Teen Group: See December 7.

FRIDAY

BRANDON STORY TIME: Brandon Free Public Library, 3 p.m. Info, 247-8230. CRAFTSBURY STORY TIME: See

Tuesday.

ENOSBURG MOMMY & ME STORY HOUR: Enosburgh Public Library,

9-10 a.m. Info, 933-2328.

ESSEX MUSICAL STORY TIME: Essex Free Library, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Info, 879-0313. GEORGIA PRESCHOOL STORY TIME:

Georgia Public Library, 10 a.m. Info, 524-4643. HUNTINGTON STORY TIME:

Huntington Public Library, 10:45 a.m. Info, 434-4583. KILLINGTON STORY TIME:

Sherburne Memorial Library, 10:30-11 a.m. Info, 422-9765.

11:15 a.m. Info, 253-6145.

SWANTON STORY TIME: See

Wednesday.

WINOOSKI STORY TIME: Winooski

Memorial Library, 10:30 a.m. Info, 655-6424. SATURDAY

COLCHESTER SATURDAY DROP-IN STORY TIME: Burnham Memorial

Library, 10 a.m. Info, 264-5660.

ENOSBURG STORY HOUR:

Enosburgh Public Library, 10-11 a.m. Info, 933-2328.

ESSEX WEEKEND STORY TIME:

Essex Free Library, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Info, 879-0313. MILTON DROP-IN SATURDAY STORY TIME: Milton Public Library, 10

a.m. Info, 893-4644.


SUBMIT YOUR FEBRUARY EVENTS FOR PRINT BY JANUARY 15 AT KIDSVT.COM OR CALENDAR@KIDSVT.COM. Preschool Yoga with Danielle: Small ones stretch and relax. Ages 2 and up. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 10-10:45 a.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE Teen Advisory Board: Teens tackle library projects. Grades 9 and up. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 3-4:30 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE ORLEANS Lego Club: See December 8. WASHINGTON Montpelier Mother Up! Monthly Meet-Up: Families discuss the realities of climate change; what that means on a local, state and national level; and how to create a more just and nature-friendly world. Vegetarian dinner and childcare offered. North Branch Nature Center, Montpelier, 5:30-7:30 p.m., RSVP requested. Info, 229-0041. FREE

6 Saturday CALEDONIA Caledonia Winter Farmers Market: See December 16, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. CHITTENDEN EvoKids Saturday Drop-In Yoga: See December 9. Kids Building Workshop: Handy helpers learn do-it-yourself skills and tool safety as they construct seasonal projects. Ages 5-12. Home Depot, Williston, 9 a.m.-noon., preregister at workshops.homedepot.com. Info, 872-0039. FREE FRANKLIN St. Albans Open Gym Fun: Moms, dads and kiddos beat the winter blues together with an inside morning of rotating play equipment and group games. Ages 2-14. Adult caregiver required. St. Albans City Hall, 9-11 a.m., $5-8. Info, 524-1500. RUTLAND Rutland Winter Farmers Market: See December 6, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

7 Sunday Family Gym: See December 8. WASHINGTON Dance, Sing & Jump Around: Dancers delight in a lively afternoon with instruction and live music. Liz Benjamin and Ethan Guiles callers. Ages 3-8 with adult caregivers. Plainfield Town Hall Opera House, 3-4:30 p.m., suggested donation $5; free for children. Info, 223-1509.

8 Monday Itty Bitty Public Skating: See December 7. Queer Care Support: See December 11. Williston Preschool Music: See December 7, 11 a.m.

Kids Yoga: See December 11.

9 Tuesday CHITTENDEN Creative Tuesdays: See December 5. Spanish Musical Kids: See December 5. STEAM Tuesdays: See December 12. Winooski Lego Club: See December 5. Winter Story Time: Small ones soak up stories and get creative with crafts. Dorothy Alling Memorial Library, Williston, 10:30 a.m. Info, 878-4918. FREE

WASHINGTON Kids Trade & Play: See December 9. See Dr. First videos “First With Kids” at uvmhealth.org. CHITTENDEN ‘Screenagers’: This documentary explores the influence of technology on teens and how parents might empower their children to navigate the digital world. Discussion follows. Ages 10 and up. Albert D. Lawton Intermediate School, Essex Junction, 6:30-8:30 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE Audubon Homeschool Program: See December 14. Babytime: See December 7.

FRANKLIN Nerf Games: Active youngsters build team skills and develop strategic thinking, respect and honesty while having fun. Grades 2-8. Bring a Nerf blaster and protective goggles, if possible. St. Albans City Hall, 5:30-6:30 p.m., $10-13. Info, 524-1500.

Itty Bitty Public Skating: See December 7.

WASHINGTON Maker Program: See December 5.

FRANKLIN Franklin Lego Thursdays: See December 7.

WINDSOR Norwich Lego Tuesdays: See December 5.

St. Albans Library Legos: See December 14.

10 Wednesday CHITTENDEN Dorothy’s List Group for Homeschooled Students: See December 13. Family Game Day: See December 6. Green Mountain Book Award Book Discussion for Homeschooled Students: See December 13. Maker Lab: Hands-on experimenting entertains entrepreneurial engineers. For middle school students. Milton Public Library, 3:30-4:30 p.m. Info, 893-4644. FREE Read to Daisy the Therapy Dog: See December 6, 3-4 p.m. Red Clover Group for Homeschooled Students: See December 13. FRANKLIN Fit Moms: See December 6. RUTLAND Killington Lego Club: See December 6. Rutland Winter Farmers Market: See December 6. ORANGE Randolph Lego Wednesdays: See December 6. WASHINGTON History for Homeschoolers: See December 14. Kid Parent Yoga: See January 3.

11 Thursday CALEDONIA Hardwick Lego Club: See December 7.

Read to Archie the Therapy Dog: See December 7. Spanish Story Time: See December 14. Ukulele Kids: See December 14. Williston Preschool Music: See December 7.

WASHINGTON History for Homeschoolers: See December 14. Kid Parent Yoga: See January 3.

12 Friday CHITTENDEN Dungeons & Dragons: See December 22. Family Gym: See December 8.

WINDSOR Norwich Winter Farmers Market: See December 9, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Sleigh Ride Weekend: Families cruise through pastures the old-school way, visit the dairy barn and check out the restored farmhouse. Billings Farm & Museum, Woodstock, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Regular admission, $4-15; free for children under 3. Info, 457-2355.

14 Sunday CHITTENDEN Essex Open Gym: See December 10. Family Gym: See December 8. WINDSOR Sleigh Ride Weekend: See January 13, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

15 Monday CHITTENDEN Itty Bitty Public Skating: See December 7. Martin Luther King Jr. Day Celebration: Free-to-everyone family-friendly programming honors the legacy of Dr. King as part of a nationwide initiative to make this a “day on, not a day off.” ECHO Leahy Center for Lake Champlain, Burlington, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Info, 864-1848. FREE WASHINGTON Capoeira: See December 11.

GroovaRoo: See January 5.

Kids Yoga: See December 11.

Kids Music With Linda ‘Tickle Belly’ Bassick: See December 8.

WINDSOR Sleigh Ride Weekend: See January 13, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Live-Action Role Play: See December 22. Music With Raph: See December 15. Music With Robert: See December 8. ORLEANS Lego Club: See December 8.

13 Saturday CHITTENDEN Burlington Winter Farmers Market: See December 9, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. EvoKids Saturday Drop-In Yoga: See December 9. Harry Potter Club: Wizardry and witchcraft experts dig into discussion and trivia. All ages. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 2-3 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE FRANKLIN Little Explorer Nature Adventure Program: Eager naturalists-in-training search out the secrets of the world with Kurt Valenta and his hands-on nature approach. Ages 3-10 with parent participation. Highgate Public Library, Highgate Center, 9:15 a.m.; preregister. Info, 868-3970. FREE

16 Tuesday CHITTENDEN Creative Tuesdays: See December 5. Spanish Musical Kids: See December 5. STEAM Tuesdays: See December 12. Winooski Lego Club: See December 5. FRANKLIN Nerf Games: See January 9. WASHINGTON Maker Program: See December 5. WINDSOR Norwich Lego Tuesdays: See December 5.

17 Wednesday CHITTENDEN Chess Club: See December 20. Family Game Day: See December 6. Little One & Me Circle Time: See December 20.

St. Albans Open Gym Fun: See January 6. 17 WEDNESDAY, P.48

KIDS VT

CHITTENDEN Go Club: See December 11.

WASHINGTON Capoeira: See December 11.

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

CHITTENDEN Essex Open Gym: See December 10.

RUTLAND Rutland Winter Farmers Market: See December 6, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

KIDSVT.COM

WASHINGTON Capital City Winter Farmers Market: See December 9, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

RUTLAND Babies & Toddlers Rock: See December 11.

47


CALENDAR JANUARY 17 Wednesday (cont.) Read to Daisy the Therapy Dog: See December 6, 3-4 p.m. FRANKLIN Fit Moms: See December 6. RUTLAND Killington Lego Club: See December 6. Rutland Winter Farmers Market: See December 6. ORANGE Randolph Lego Wednesdays: See December 6. WASHINGTON Kid Parent Yoga: See January 3.

Lumberjanes Camp: Day campers battle time-traveling dinosaurs, solve puzzles and learn to navigate in the wilderness at Miss Qiunzell Thiskwin Penniquiqul Thistle Crumpet’s Camp for Hardcore Lady Types. Scouting Lads also invited. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 1-3 p.m.; preregister. Info, 878-6956. FREE FRANKLIN St. Albans Open Gym Fun: See January 6. RUTLAND Rutland Winter Farmers Market: See December 6, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

21 Sunday CHITTENDEN Essex Open Gym: See December 10. Family Gym: See December 8.

22 Monday CHITTENDEN Chess Club: See December 18. Go Club: See December 11. Itty Bitty Public Skating: See December 7.

WASHINGTON Capital City Winter Farmers Market: See December 9, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Stories With Megan: See December 11. Williston Preschool Music: See December 7, 11 a.m.

RUTLAND Babies & Toddlers Rock: See December 11. WASHINGTON Capoeira: See December 11. Kids Yoga: See December 11.

23 Tuesday CHITTENDEN Creative Tuesdays: See December 5. Spanish Musical Kids: See December 5. STEAM Tuesdays: See December 12. Winooski Lego Club: See December 5. Winter Story Time: See January 9.

Kids’ Movies: See December 20. Movie Night: See December 20.

Live Performances

18 Thursday CALEDONIA Hardwick Lego Club: See December 7. CHITTENDEN Babytime: See December 7. Burlington Mother Up! Monthly Meet-Up: See December 21. Itty Bitty Public Skating: See December 7. Read to Archie the Therapy Dog: See December 7. Williston Preschool Music: See December 7. FRANKLIN Franklin Lego Thursdays: See December 7. WASHINGTON Books Come to Life: See December 14. Kid Parent Yoga: See January 3.

‘IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE’ LIVE RADIO PLAYS: Frank Capra’s

heartwarming classic Christmas story comes to life on the stage with versatile actors and stellar sound effects. Lost Nation Theater, Montpelier City Hall Auditorium, WEDNESDAY, DEC. 6, AND THURSDAY, DEC. 7, 7 P.M., $10-15; children under

12 admitted free per paying adult. Infants and toddlers not admitted. Info, 229-0492. Memorial Hall, Essex Junction, FRIDAY, DEC. 8, 7:30

P.M., SATURDAY, DEC. 9, 2 & 7:30 P.M. AND SUNDAY, DEC. 10, 2 P.M.,

$16-18.

KIDS VT

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

KIDSVT.COM

‘THE LITTLE MERMAID’:

48

19 Friday CHITTENDEN Family Gym: See December 8. Family Movie: See December 17. GroovaRoo: See January 5. Kids Music With Linda ‘Tickle Belly’ Bassick: See December 8. Lego Fun: See December 15. Music With Robert: See December 8. ORLEANS Lego Club: See December 8.

20 Saturday CALEDONIA Caledonia Winter Farmers Market: See December 16. CHITTENDEN Dad’s Derby Day: Kids and their pops create cardboard race tracks for toy cars to careen down. Ages 3 and up. Milton Public Library, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.; preregister. Info, 893-4644. FREE EvoKids Saturday Drop-In Yoga: See December 9. Family Art Saturday: See December 16.

Adapted from Hans Christian Andersen’s classic tale, this live musical rendition of the beloved Disney animation delights an audience of all ages with the story of mermaid Ariel, who aspires to join the world on dry land. Northern Stage, White River Junction, WEDNESDAYS-SUNDAYS THROUGH JAN. 7, $15-69. Info,

296-7000.

‘A CHRISTMAS CAROL’: With

VERMONT SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA HOLIDAY POPS:

Guest conductor Anne Decker leads the orchestra in festive music from around the world, including works by Syrian composer Suad Bushnaq and Russian composer Alexander Glazunov. Also tune in for selections from The Nutcracker, traditional American favorites, a carol sing-along and a special appearance by the Bronze Ambassadors — a nationally recognized student bell choir. Barre Opera House, FRIDAY, DEC. 8, 7:30 P.M., $10-30. Info, 476-8188. Flynn MainStage, Burlington, SATURDAY, DEC. 9, 7:30 P.M., $10-52. Info, 863-5966. KIDS VT ‘SPECTACULAR SPECTACULAR’: Vermont’s

rising stars ages 5 to 13 wow the crowd with two-minute acts showcasing their talents. Doors open at noon. Higher Ground, South Burlington, SATURDAY, DEC. 9, 12:30 P.M., $7-10; free for children under 7. Info, 985-5482.

Broadway-style scenery and a 24-member ensemble, the Nebraska Theatre Caravan enchants the audience with Dickens’ famous “ghostly little tale” of redemption from the past. Flynn MainStage, Burlington, FRIDAY, DEC. 8, 7 P.M., $15-45. Info, 863-5966.

‘THE CHRISTMAS REVELS: A NORDIC CELEBRATION OF THE WINTER SOLSTICE’: A young

girl’s quest for her Nordic ancestors unfolds through traditional seasonal songs, dances and pageantry performed by a cast of local and guest musicians and dancers. Spaulding Auditorium, Hanover, N.H.,

THURSDAY, DEC. 14, 6 P.M., FRIDAY, DEC. 15, 7 P.M., SATURDAY, DEC. 16, 1 & 5 P.M., AND SUNDAY, DEC. 17, 1 & 5 P.M., $8-48. Info,

603-646-2422.

‘THE GIFT’: Graceful gliders from the local figure-skating club and participants from Burlington Parks, Recreation & Waterfront programs sail across the ice, performing holiday-themed acts during this seasonal revue. Leddy Park Arena, Burlington, SATURDAY, DEC. 16, 3-5 P.M., admission by donation to the Boys & Girls Club of Burlington. Info, 865-7558.

Vermont’s Moving Light dance company performs this beloved holiday story of the little girl Clara and her nighttime adventures. Barre Opera House, SATURDAY, DEC.

Thespians-in-training teach the audience 23 lessons, including how to beg for a dog, how to torture your sister, how to act after being sent to your room and how to laugh out loud. Middlebury Union High School, FRIDAY, DEC. 8, 7

735-8041.

raise their voices in merry melodies with the Milton Community Band. Milton High School, SUNDAY, DEC. 10, 2 P.M. Info, 893-4922. FREE

‘THE GREEN MOUNTAIN NUTCRACKER’: Central

‘HOW TO EAT LIKE A CHILD’:

P.M., SATURDAY, DEC. 9, 2 P.M. AND SUNDAY, DEC. 10, 2 P.M., $7. Info,

HOLIDAY CONCERT & SINGALONG: Friends and neighbors

16, 7 P.M. AND SUNDAY, DEC. 17, 2 P.M., $15-25. Info, 476-8188.

‘Vermont’s Own Nutcracker’

AN IRISH CHRISTMAS WITH THE MCLEAN AVENUE BAND: Singer

and bass guitarist Padraig Allen of County Meath leads six exceptional musicians and dancers in a combination of traditional Irish tunes and ballads with elements of rock, pop and R&B. Dancers from Waterbury’s Heather Morris Celtic Dance Academy and singers from Morrisville’s Bishop John A. Marshall School make a special appearance. Ages 5 and up. Spruce Peak Performing Arts Center, Stowe, SATURDAY, DEC. 16, 7 P.M., $20-54. Info, 760-4634. ‘VERMONT’S OWN NUTCRACKER’:

Graceful ballerinas conquer the Mouse King and journey to the Land of Sweets in Vermont Ballet Theater’s annual production of this holiday classic. Flynn MainStage, Burlington,

SATURDAY, DEC. 16, 2 & 7 P.M. AND SUNDAY, DEC. 17, 1 & 6 P.M.,

$20.70-37. Info, 863-5966.

‘SLEEPING BEAUTY’: More than 50 dancers from the State Ballet Theatre of Russia enchant the audience with Tchaikovsky’s timeless tale of a princess cursed to sleep for 100 years but awakened with true love’s kiss. Ages 5 and up. Spruce Peak Performing Arts Center, Stowe, SATURDAY, JAN. 27, 7 P.M., $20-75; a free child’s ticket with each adult ticket purchased by Jan. 6. Info, 760-4634.


SUBMIT YOUR FEBRUARY EVENTS FOR PRINT BY JANUARY 15 AT KIDSVT.COM OR CALENDAR@KIDSVT.COM. FRANKLIN Nerf Games: See January 9. WASHINGTON Maker Program: See December 5. WINDSOR Norwich Lego Tuesdays: See December 5.

24 Wednesday CHITTENDEN Family Game Day: See December 6. Meal in a Mug: Chefs-in-training learn to microwave a meal and leave with menus. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 4-5 p.m.; preregister. Info, 878-6956. FREE Read to Daisy the Therapy Dog: See December 6, 3-4 p.m. FRANKLIN Fit Moms: See December 6. RUTLAND Killington Lego Club: See December 6. Rutland Winter Farmers Market: See December 6. ORANGE Randolph Lego Wednesdays: See December 6. WASHINGTON Kid Parent Yoga: See January 3.

25 Thursday

See Dr. First videos “First With Kids” at uvmhealth.org. ORLEANS Lego Club: See December 8.

27 Saturday CHITTENDEN Burlington Winter Farmers Market: See December 9, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. EvoKids Saturday Drop-In Yoga: See December 9. Family Contradance: Movers and groovers swing to music by the Woodbury Strings Jam Band. Family dance instruction provided by experienced callers. The Schoolhouse Learning Center, South Burlington, 3-5 p.m., $5-8 suggested donation; free for children under 13. Info, 223-8945.

RUTLAND Rutland Winter Farmers Market: See December 6, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

28 Sunday CHITTENDEN Essex Open Gym: See December 10.

CHITTENDEN Babytime: See December 7.

Family Gym: See December 8.

Ukulele Kids: See December 14. Williston Preschool Music: See December 7. FRANKLIN Franklin Lego Thursdays: See December 7.

WASHINGTON Kid Parent Yoga: See January 3.

29 Monday CHITTENDEN Go Club: See December 11. Itty Bitty Public Skating: See December 7. National Puzzle Day: Puzzle fans put their wits and skills together. Brownell Library, Essex Junction, 3:30-4:30 p.m. Info, 878-6956. FREE Pajama Story Time: See December 11.

26 Friday CHITTENDEN Dungeons & Dragons: See December 22. Family Gym: See December 8. GroovaRoo: See January 5. Kids Music With Linda ‘Tickle Belly’ Bassick: See December 8. Live-Action Role Play: See December 22.

Stories with Megan: See December 11. Williston Preschool Music: See December 7, 11 a.m. RUTLAND Babies & Toddlers Rock: See December 11. WASHINGTON Capoeira: See December 11.

WE’RE HERE FOR YOU, EVERY STEP OF THE WAY. WIC provides healthy food, nutrition education, and personalized support to pregnant women, moms and their babies, and kids up to five years old. Come meet with our nutritionists and peer counselors – they’re ready to listen and share information. If you’re a family of four with a household income up to $3793/month, or your child is covered by Dr. Dynasaur then WIC is for you. Income guidelines vary based on family size.

Kids Yoga: See December 11.

Preschool Yoga with Danielle: See December 8. Yoga Story Time: Little yogis blend body movement with books. Ages 2-5. Richmond Free Library, 11 a.m. Info, 434-3036. FREE

This institution is an equal opportunity provider. Untitled-7 1

KIDS VT

Sign up for WIC today! Call 8OO-649-4357 or visit healthvermont.gov/wic

Music With Raph: See December 15.

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

St. Albans Library Legos: See December 14, 3-5 p.m.

WINDSOR Norwich Winter Farmers Market: See December 9, 9 a.m.-1 p.m.

KIDSVT.COM

Read to Archie the Therapy Dog: See December 7.

11/30/17 2:20 PM

FRANKLIN St. Albans Open Gym Fun: See January 6.

CALEDONIA Hardwick Lego Club: See December 7.

Itty Bitty Public Skating: See December 7.

Untitled-83 1

49 4/27/17 11:37 AM


Planning a kids event? Submit your info by January 15 online at kidsvt.com or to calendar@kidsvt.com

30 Tuesday

WASHINGTON Maker Program: See December 5.

CHITTENDEN Burlington Circle of Parents for Adoptive & Guardianship Families: Moms and dads come together to socialize about their parenting experiences and strengthen skills. Childcare and dinner included without fee. Howard Center, Burlington, 5-6:30 p.m.; preregister. Info, 864-7467. FREE Creative Tuesdays: See December 5. STEAM Tuesdays: See December 12. Winooski Lego Club: See December 5. Winter Story Time: See January 9.

CALENDAR

SUBMIT YOUR FEBRUARY EVENTS FOR PRINT BY JANUARY 15 AT KIDSVT.COM OR CALENDAR@KIDSVT.COM.

CALENDAR JANUARY

FRANKLIN Nerf Games: See January 9.

WINDSOR Norwich Lego Tuesdays: See December 5.

31 Wednesday CHITTENDEN Family Game Day: See December 6.

Rutland Winter Farmers Market: See December 6.

Read to Daisy the Therapy Dog: See December 6, 3-4 p.m.

ORANGE Randolph Lego Wednesdays: See December 6.

FRANKLIN Fit Moms: See December 6. RUTLAND Killington Lego Club: See December 6.

PUZZLE PAGE ANSWERS

SEE P. 25 FOR PUZZLES

Playgroups Kids enjoy fun and games during these informal get-togethers, and caregivers connect with other local parents and peers. The groups are usually free and often include snacks, arts and crafts, or music. Most playgroups follow the school calendar. Contact the organizer for site-specific details. MONDAY

AUDUBON NATURE PLAYGROUP:

Green Mountain Audubon Center, 9:30-11 a.m. Info, 434-3068.

BURLINGTON CRAWLERS AND TODDLERS: Janet S. Munt

CAMBRIDGE PLAYGROUP:

Cambridge Elementary School, 9-11 a.m. Info, 888-5229.

MILTON PLAYGROUP: Milton

Public Library, 9:30-11 a.m. Info, 893-1457.

MORRISVILLE PLAYGROUP:

River Arts, 9:30-11 a.m. Info, 888-5229.

ESSEX JUNCTION PLAYGROUP:

BURLINGTON FATHERS AND CHILDREN TOGETHER: Janet S.

Munt Parent-Child Center, 4-7 p.m. Info, 862-2121.

RICHMOND PLAYGROUP:

Richmond Free Library, 8:4510:15 p.m. Info, 899-4415. SHELBURNE PLAYGROUP:

Trinity Episcopal Church, 9:45 a.m. SOUTH ROYALTON PLAYGROUP:

BURLINGTON DROP-IN FAMILY PLAY: The Janet S. Munt

THURSDAY

Prenatal & Family Yoga Center, 11:15 a.m.-1:15 p.m. Info, 899-0339.

Family Room, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Info, 862-2121.

SOUTH BURLINGTON PLAYGROUP: Ascension

Family Center of Washington County, 5:30-7 p.m. Info, 262-3292.

Lutheran Church, 9:30-11 a.m. Info, 489-0410.

WINOOSKI BABY PLAYTIME:

O’Brien Community Center, 9-9:30 a.m. Info, 655-1422.

DADS AND KIDS PLAYGROUP:

ESSEX BABY PLAYGROUP:

Sunset Studio, 10-11 a.m. Info, 878-1375.

FAIRFIELD PLAYGROUP: Bent

Northrop Memorial Library, 10-11:30 a.m. Info, 827-3945.

HINESBURG FAMILY PLAYTIME:

Hinesburg Town Hall, 10-11:30 a.m. Info, 482-4946.

Tuesday, 9:30-11:30 a.m. FRIDAY

ALBURGH PLAYGROUP:

Alburgh Public Library, 9:30 a.m. Info, 582-9942. COLCHESTER PLAYGROUP: See

Wednesday, 9:30-11 a.m. EDEN PLAYGROUP: Eden

Central School, 9-10:30 a.m. Info, 888-5229.

FAIRFAX PLAYGROUP: United

Church of Fairfax, third Friday of every month, 9-10:30 a.m. Info, 524-6554.

HINESBURG PRESCHOOL PLAYGROUP: Hinesburg

Community School, 9-10:30 a.m. Info, 482-4946.

HUNTINGTON PLAYGROUP:

OPEN GYM: See Monday, 10-11:30 a.m.

WEDNESDAY

Colchester Village Meeting House, 9:30-11 a.m. Info, 316-2918.

WINOOSKI PLAYTIME: See

HINESBURG BABY TIME:

See Tuesday, 9-11 a.m.

JOHNSON PLAYGROUP: United Church of Johnson, 9-10:30 a.m. Info, 888-5229.

Aldrich Public Library, 9:30-11 a.m. Info, 476-7550.

Dorothy Alling Memorial Library, 11 a.m.-noon. Info, 878-4918.

Huntington Public Library, 10-11:30 a.m. Info, 899-4415.

United Church of Hinesburg, 10-11:30 a.m. Info, 482-4946.

Community Center, 9:3011:30 a.m. Info, 655-1422.

WILLISTON PLAYGROUP:

ESSEX JUNCTION PLAYGROUP:

WINOOSKI PLAYTIME: O’Brien

COLCHESTER PLAYGROUP:

Congregational Church of Brookfield, 9:30-11:30 a.m. Info, 685-2264.

PURPLE CRAYON PLAY GROUP:

ArtisTree/Purple Crayon, 9:30-11:30 a.m., donations accepted. Info, 457-3500.

EVOLUTION NEW FAMILY PLAYGROUP: Evolution

TUESDAY

BROOKFIELD PLAYGROUP: First

NORTHFIELD PLAYGROUP:

United Church of Northfield, 9:30-11 a.m. Info, 262-3292.

Maple Street Recreation Center, 9-11 a.m. Info, 878-1375.

BARRE BABY PLAYGROUP:

United Methodist Church, 9-11 a.m. Info, 685-2264, ext. 24.

WASHINGTON Kid Parent Yoga: See January 3. K

United Church on the Green, 9:30-11 a.m. Info, 685-2264.

OPEN GYM: Central VT Gymnastics Academy, Fridays, 10-11:30 a.m., $7. Info, 882-8324. BRADFORD PLAYGROUP: Grace

When the insects took a test on how to make honey, they scored —”BEE” PLUS

RIDDLE ANSWER:

PUP. BOLD. FEED. RUSH.

JUMBLES

KIDS VTDECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

KIDSVT.COM

RIDDLE SEARCH ANSWER: He tractor down. 50

Parent-Child Center, 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Info, 862-2121.

See Dr. First videos “First With Kids” at uvmhealth.org.

MILTON PLAYGROUP: See

Monday, 9:30-11 a.m.

MONTPELIER PLAYGROUP: St.

Augustine Church, 9:30-11 a.m. Info, 262-3292. OHAVI ZEDEK SYNAGOGUE PLAYGROUP: Ohavi Zedek

Synagogue, 9:30-10:30 a.m. Info, 864-0218.

RANDOLPH PLAYGROUP: St.

John’s Church, 9:30-11:30 a.m. Info, 685-2264.

SOUTH BURLINGTON PLAYGROUP: See Tuesday,

9:30-11 a.m.

RUTLAND PLAYGROUP:

Rutland Free Library, 9:30 a.m. Info, 773-1860. UNDERHILL PLAYGROUP:

Underhill Central School, 9:30-11 a.m. Info, 899-4415.

WILLISTON PLAYGROUP: Allen Brook School, third Friday of every month, 9:30-11 a.m.

SATURDAY

FAIRFAX OPEN TOT GYM: BFA Fairfax, 9-10:30 a.m. Info, 524-6554. MONTPELIER SATURDAY PLAYGROUP: Family Center of

Washington County, 9:30-11 a.m. Info, 262-3292.


USE YOUR WORDS BY L I Z M AY S H A RRI S

Love Like Mary After tragedy, a mother reflects on her daughter’s legacy

Mary Harris

D

I knew she was sending me a message — to be kinder, listen more and fight less.

KIDS VT

Liz Mays Harris is in the process of creating the #lovelikemary Foundation, which will host therapeutic outdoor retreats for families who have suffered trauma. She is working on a book about her family’s experience.

DECEMBER 2017/JANUARY 2018

into my eyes during the entire speech, willing me to understand the importance of her words. I knew she was sending me a message — to be kinder, listen more and fight less. Mary’s speech read, in part: I believe it is nice to be important, but it is more important to be nice, which every person has the ability to do. You have the ability to be kind, you have the ability to help others be happy, to be proud and confident, you have the ability to change someone’s day, you have the ability to change someone’s life through something as simple as a kind smile, a good laugh, five extra seconds to hold a door open, or give a quick compliment. Kindness is positive, positivity leads to good decisions, good decisions lead to happiness, and happiness is the best feeling in the world. So I ask you to be kind. Be compassionate. Be respectful. Be selfless. Because without kindness, what is the point? On October 8th, 2016, six months after Mary delivered those words, her life was taken, along with the lives of four of her closest friends, by a wrongway driver as they drove home from a concert at Higher Ground. Three

When people look at me, I want them to see that when bad things happen, it’s possible to pick up your feet and move forward. I want to show them that even when your world is turned upside down, there is always something worth living for. I want to wake up every day and smile at the beauty of my children, laugh with them, watch them score goals, lie in bed with them and wipe their tears away when we share our memories of Mary, and smile about all the love she shared with us. In the days after Mary’s death, I created the hashtag #lovelikemary on social media. It was a way for me to say that Mary is still here in this world and to share her love with those of us left behind. A friend printed the phrase on stickers that have been plastered near and far, from school lockers to soccer team buckets to a ski lodge in Europe. When people mourn the loss of Mary and her friends, I hope these simple words help them remember Mary’s smile, her zest for life and her love. Losing Mary has made me more cautious, but not in the ways one might think. I’m not overly protective of my kids getting into a car and going out to a concert at night, but I am more conscious of their pain and more sensitive to their needs and individuality. My greatest hope as a mother is that all of my children feel my love, that they never forget how much their sister adored them and that they spread kindness as they walk through their lives. That they remember, like Mary always did, that “it is nice to be important, but it is more important to be nice.” K

KIDSVT.COM

uring her sophomore year in high school, my daughter Mary did a project for Three Democracies, her history and philosophy class. Her teacher asked students to write a paper about a virtue that was important to them. Mary wrote hers on kindness. Parents were invited to school one evening to hear the kids present their work in a publicspeaking format. As Mary stood to read her paper, panic took control of her body, and she started to cry. Heavy, uncontrollable tears rolled down her cheeks, and she ran out of the classroom. Her teacher followed, with me right behind. As I stood in the hallway, holding Mary in my arms, I could feel her pain. We’re a family of seven and have a tendency to bicker with each other, as large families often do. I think seeing her father and me in front of her that evening was emotional for Mary because she had a message she wanted us to hear. As I wiped tears from my daughter’s eyes, I felt her body relax. I told her how proud of her I was. We walked back into the classroom, and I took my seat. Mary apologized to the class and began to read. She looked

hours after I found out my daughter had been killed, I was sitting in her room and reached into a pile of her important belongings. On the very top was an acrylic painting of an octopus I had made for her. Just underneath it, I found Mary’s speech on kindness. I knew the second I saw it that she had left it there for me to find that morning. I knew she would have wanted me to share it at her funeral and with all those close to us — as if to say that, in the wake of this monumental loss, we are not to lose sight of the goodness that surrounds us. That we must choose love, spread kindness and stay away from the anger that wants to seep into our souls when the tragic and unforeseeable happens. The morning after Mary died, 200 friends and community members showed up at our house. I’ve received probably 100 handwritten letters from Mary’s classmates, telling stories about how awesome she was. But, despite this outpouring of support, the past 14 months have been extremely hard. I still feel like Mary is going to pull in the driveway, returning home from soccer practice. At night, I cry myself to sleep. Mary would have been a high school senior; dozens of college brochures have been sent to our house in the past year. Would they stop coming, please?— I sometimes think. Mary had plans to be a pediatric surgeon so she could save children’s lives. She wished to attend the University of Vermont, because she thought it was a great school and wanted to be close to home and her family. The most painful part of losing Mary is thinking of her smiling up at me, saying, “I love you, Mom” and hugging me. But, in my loss, I have realized that without compassion, love and kindness, what is the point? Every day, I try to think about how I can be kinder and more loving.

51


Kids VT — December 2017 / January 2018  

Au Pairs to the Rescue, Real-Life Wonders, House in the Trees, Skating in Stowe, DIY Board Games

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