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A Parenting, Educational, and Health Resource www.MotherAndChildReunion.com Stories, Tips, Activities, & Coupons

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Johnson County

Monthly • Volume 14 • Issue 6 No. 163 • Winter 2010

he chores that go along with parenthood don’t hit the rear door on the driver’s side which just hapalways leave us feeling thankful. I’m sure many of you pened to be the door my 5 year old son was sitting by. moms and dads can relate to what I mean. The jolt of the impact spun our car 180 degrees on a dime. Half of the door lay in the street. Just last Saturday evening, I was walking After spending hours in an around the house grumbling at my emergency room, we two children and my husheaded home bumped, band for all of the messbruised, tired and es they had left scatsore, but we were tered around. My daughall in one piece. ter had just had her fourth birthday and all of Suddenly, my her craft-type presents whole attitude were strung out all over our changed. As my husband kitchen table to dry. There were and I carried our sleeping toys on the floor, laundry in baschildren into a messy house kets sitting in the living room and laid them in their beds, I waiting to be folded, and four or felt an overwhelming sense of five pairs of shoes sitting in the happiness. How wonderful it entry way floor. was that I still had these two little mess-makers to scatter their As I was walking around picking toys around the house, to leave up toys, the phone rang. The man their shoes in the entryway and on the other end told us he wantto leave their crafts all over the ed to make a cash offer on the kitchen table. It no longer mathouse we had for sale. Because tered that there was laundry sitwe had previously sold it three ting in baskets waiting to be times and all three times the deal folded. I was just very thankful fell through, and because we had that my family was okay. already purchased another home and had been making multiple So this holiday season be thankhouse payments for three ful for your children even if months, we dropped all that we they are tired and cranky at the were doing to run out the door to mall. Think about what life meet with this man. As we were would be like without them and leaving, I stopped by the Mother then pick them up and carry & Child Reunion office to get a them even though your back phone number I needed. What I may be a little tired. When they found was an office full of septic have stayed up past their bedwater. The septic tank had time and are beyond reasonIllustrated by Natalie Golden backed up. My ing, don’t yell at them, pick at age 8, Merriam, KS husband and I grabbed the shopthem up and love them. Snugvac and started sucking up horrible smelling water. We gle them in their bed until they fall asleep. Take a few called a plumber to meet us back at the office at 9:00 minutes to watch and listen to them as they fall asleep. p.m. to fix the problem. Needless to say, by this time we There is no sight more beautiful than a sleeping child. were pretty frustrated. Don’t forget what a gift they are. Be thankful for your children. After meeting with the prospective home buyer and signing a contract, we were feeling better. We decided to get Oh, and be sure to check out our advertisers’ offers in a bite to eat before heading home to meet the plumber. this issue and have fun hunting for bargains this holiday As we were turning into the parking lot, a man in a red season! Thunderbird ran a stop sign and plowed into our car. He 8 Happy Parenting!

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WE ARE MOVING! TO OUR NEW LOCATION AT: 8340 MISSION ROAD, #100 PRAIRIE VILLAGE, KANSAS 66208

VILLAGE PEDIATRICS WOULD LIKE TO WELCOME

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Eat Smart for a Healthy Pregnancy Caffeine What you need to know: Research suggests that low to moderate caffeine consumption probably does not affect your fertility or increase your risk of miscarriage, and that moderate caffeine consumption is probably OK during pregnancy. “Moderate” means fewer than 300mg of caffeine per day, or about the amount in 2 to 2-1/2 standard 8-ounce cups of coffee. The stronger the coffee, the more caffeine it contains. There is also caffeine in chocolate, tea, cola, some carbonated beverages other than cola, coffee ice cream, and in some nonprescription medications. What you can do: Limit the amount of caffeine you consume. It’s better for your body and your baby if you drink water, milk, and fruit juice during your pregnancy. You can drink decaffeinated colas, coffee, and tea, too.

Holiday Card Toss Needed: • 10 holiday greeting cards (various sizes) • Laundry Basket • Masking Tape • Prize for winner Get Started: Place a laundry basket about six feet away from the participants. Mark a line on the floor with masking tape. How to Play: 1) Have each participant stand behind a masking tape line. 2) Give them the holiday greeting cards, and have them try to toss the cards into the basket. 3) The person who gets the most cards in the basket wins the prize. 4) If there is a tie, have them compete against each other to determine a winner.

Information provided by March of Dimes—Saving babies, together. Questions? Call 1-888-MODIMES or visit www.modimes.org

Get Your Vitamin C Want to live longer? Then add an extra serving of vitamin C-rich food to your diet. Just one extra serving of vitamin C-rich food per day can lower your risk of death by as much as 20%.

Get Sleep to Help Memory Do you need to keep that work presentation or exam material you just memorized from slipping away? Research shows that getting some shuteye after memorizing or learning new tasks is a critical component of the learning process. In a recent study, task improvement was not observed in participants who got fewer than 6 hours of sleep in the 24 hours following a training session. Source: www.waukeshamemorial.org

Mom-to-Mom PARENTING TIP Make a crib or child’s bed using four layers: waterproof pad, sheet, waterproof pad, and sheet. When nighttime accidents happen, the top two layers can be removed and the bed is ready immediately. —Submitted by Elizabeth Couzens of Independence, Missouri.

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Billionaire Mix

✸ As we were sitting down to breakfast one morning, and my husband said,“Let’s eat, drink, and be merry!” Mackenzie, our four-year-old daughter, quickly replied,“Daddy, you can’t be ‘Mary.’You can be Joseph.” ~ Submitted by Sydney Glenn

4 cups Crispix cereal 2 cups pretzel sticks 1-1/2 cups pecan halves 1/2 tsp baking soda 1/4 cup butter, melted Confectioners sugar 1/2 cup Southern Praline Pecan Syrup Preheat oven to 250° F. Stir cereal, pretzel sticks, and pecan halves together in a large cake pan. Set aside. Mix syrup, baking soda, and melted butter in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring continually. Cook for two minutes. Pour syrup mixture over cereal mix, and stir to coat. Place the mixture in the oven and bake for 45 minutes to an hour stirring occasionally. Cool. Dust with confectioners sugar.

✸ Last Christmas Eve we all went to a church service, and when we arrived back at Grandma’s house Santa had come and brought gifts for my nephew. There were lots of presents by the tree. My nephew’s eyes got really big, and he asked if all the presents were for him.When we told him they were indeed all gifts for him, he said,“Geez, I wonder how many presents I would have gotten if I was good all year?” ~ Submitted by Amy Dublinske ✸ The snow was falling heavily as my 2-year-old and I walked out into the parking lot. He looked up with great excitement and yelled,“Mama, look at all the cornflakes!” ~ Submitted by Melissa Marwedel

Give your child the leading edge with...

–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– Moms and dads! Share your child’s funny sayings with us and you may see your story published! Please include your name and mailing address! Email your story to macreunion@aol.com.

Alma Fusco, Instructor (816) 436-9613

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Front Cover: Kid’s Art Contest Win a gift certificate to Cool Crest! Create a picture for our next front cover! Pictures should be full-color. If your child’s picture is chosen for the front cover, they will win a gift certificate to Cool Crest! January/February Winter Part 2: Planning Your Birthday Bash! Entries must be received by 1/10/2011.

Mail to: Mother & Child Reunion, PO Box 93, Holden, MO 64040. Include child’s name, age, address, and phone number on the back of the picture. Simple, large pictures work best.

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Did You Know?

– Educational Moment with Sylvan – Communicating with Kids

The more colorful the fruit and vegetable, the more powerful the vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants will be in that food. Blueberries, cherries, strawberries, papaya, and mango are all loaded with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

by Becky Larsen, Senior Director, Sylvan Learning Centers (Overland Park/Lee’s Summit)

Many problems in our society reflect a breakdown in communication between adults and children. Here are powerful and practical tips for communicating with kids:

❄ ❆ ❄ ❆ ❄ ❆ ❄ ❆ ❄ ❆ ❄ ❆ ❄ ❆ ❄ ❆

• Approximate the child’s posture. If the child is sitting, you sit. If standing, you stand. Relating to the child’s body language will establish rapport.

❄ Winter Warmer A change from hot apple cider.

• Allow the child to say as much as possible. The aim is to have the child reach the conclusion. You need only offer minimal guidance and words. The talk can also open up other issues and meaningful discussions between you and the child.

Ingredients: 1 can (46 ounces) unsweetened pineapple juice • 2 sticks cinnamon • 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice • dash of ground cloves

• Listen carefully for the child’s feelings, thoughts, and beliefs. Allow the child to really express himself. The child will feel your care and respect when you closely hear his words.

Combine all ingredients in a large saucepan and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 30 minutes. Serve warm or cold. Serves 12. This recipe is from the book SUPER SNACKS FOR KIDS: Over 200 Nutritious and Creative Treats, Drinks, and Meals You Can Prepare in a Jiffy...With No Sugar or Salt Added, by Penny Warner. Copyright held by author. Reprinted by arrangement with St. Martin’s Press, and available wherever books are sold.

• Avoid trying to “fix” things for the child or rescue him. By giving the child answers to problems, you deprive him of learning. • Be concrete, using terms she understands. The younger the child, the simpler the language should be. • Allow for periods of silence in the communication. Problem-solving can take time to unfold. Children need more time to understand their internal world than adults. Be patient. • You need to be calm enough yourself to process with the child. Take some deep breaths or wait until you can talk with a neutral open attitude. This will help your thinking and listening skills as well as the child’s. • The child needs to be willing to speak about the problem. If the child is too disturbed or is in denial about the problem, find another time to talk. The right time might be minutes or days later. • If the child’s problem directly affects you, share your thoughts and feelings with the child. Be aware of when the situation affects your responsibility, time, or money. Then work out a solution with the child that is mutually acceptable. Find a way to honor both you and the child. • Remember to have the child discover the solution whenever possible. This way he is likely to carry it out and internalize the learning. • Ask the child for information and solutions rather than telling her answers. The child will generally arrive at a solution herself from your questions. Careful listening to the child will help her concentrate and think for herself. Put these tips into practice. Help your communication with kids become clear, easy, and effective. Source: Phillip Mountrose, Brown University Child & Adolescent Behavior Letter

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Growth by the incident Paying attention to the ‘small’ moments by Calvin & Carolyn Richert

Dentistry for children and young adults

My 15-month-old granddaughter and I were finishing our weekly Saturday morning breakfast, when, with a sweep of her arm, she shoved several pieces of left-over bagel to the floor. As a kind passer-by paused to pick them up, I asked him to please leave the pieces on the floor. Surprised, he asked, “Why?” “Because Kaia has given herself a great opportunity to learn respect and responsibility. Watch.” I lifted Kaia from her chair, lowering her to the floor with, “Would you please pick up the Calvin & Carolyn Richert bagels?” which she did without Authors of The Think Space resistance. What in that moment was more important than a stranger’s kindness? And, what problem did we solve? Supported by this and other similar incidents, she will gradually learn to respect other people’s property. And, she will learn to take responsibility for poor choices. Then, when she is CEO of a struggling corporation, she will find ways to solve her problems. No one will need to ‘bail her out’ because, before she could even talk, she began learning to take responsibility for her choices! This classic illustration of how we can unconsciously short-circuit the development of children through kind, but disabling intervention shows how such teachable moments may be only a small, but critical step away. It is our responsibility to notice those moments and to use them to guide our young to infinitely better futures than would be possible if such moments passed unnoticed. Truth is, we tend to get impatient when our kids need the same lesson over and over. Then the kids push back and the whole situation ‘goes south’. A few suggestions may help: • It is your responsibility (not the kids’) to set standards for living. • It is the responsibility of the children to implement those standards when they have the ability to do so. • You must be absolutely consistent in implementing your standards. When you violate them, the expectations of children almost always go toward your exception – not the rule! • Once your standards are set, you don’t need more words. Far better to guide them without more talk. That’s how they remember to do what they already know.

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—Discipline Without Damage is a 6-session, 12-hour seminar series that gives parents and professionals dozens of practical tools to improve communication and reduce conflict with children. Call for seminar start dates. 913-341-9053 KC area; 1-888-448-4465 toll free. More info: www.dwd.com

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Holiday Hints

Should you reuse those water bottles?

by Linda Cobb, The Queen of Clean

It’s A Family Affair ✦ Enlist the whole family in a quick cleanup. Small children can dust, older ones can vacuum, your spouse can do the dishes, and you can tidy up and put things away. It’s amazing what you can accomplish in thirty short minutes. ✦ Involve children in sending out Christmas cards. Older ones can address the envelopes, and little ones can stick on the stamps! ✦ Let your children bake some Christmas cookies. They’re easy to prepare and require little supervision— just make sure to keep small hands away from the oven. You can make things easier by giving cookie cutters a quick spritz of non-stick cooking spray to prevent dough from clinging. And for those stubborn cookies that won’t come away from the baking sheet? Slide a length of dental floss under each cookie and they’ll glide right off. ✦ Children love to make pictures with artificial snow, but it can be difficult to wash off. Prevent snow from sticking by preparing the surface with a light misting of non-stick cooking spray. If you forget this step you can still remove it easily: just rub with a little bit of white, nongel toothpaste. ✦ Let the kids wrap some gifts. The outcome may not be just as you’d like, but the kids will have fun and they’ll be proud of their accomplishment.

You may think it’s economical and environmentally responsible to refill your plastic water bottle over and over again, but researchers at the University of Idaho have some advice for you. A recent study they conducted found that you might be ingesting some adverse elements. Those plastic bottles are exposed to sunlight and heat, and repeated rinsing of the same bottle can let potentially toxic compounds from the thin plastic creep into the water. The study recommends reusing the bottle for no longer than one week and then replacing it. —adapted from Self

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Keep rolls of wrapping paper handy by standing them up in a wastebasket or in a small, clean garbage can. Linda Cobb is the author of several New York Times best-selling books from Pocket Books including Talking Dirty With the Queen of Clean® and A Queen for All Seasons. Visit the Queen’s web site at queenofclean.com

Be Safe— Outside and In

We Buy Houses fast regardless of the size, price, or condition. We can close quickly and most importantly, relieve your stress and help you regain peace of mind.

✜ Make sure your children wear helmets when sledding. ✜ Have them wear helmets, knee pads, and elbow pads when ice skating. ✜ Choose a sledding path that is open and free of trees. Make sure a street doesn’t cross at the end of the path. ✜ Keep holiday light cords—and all cords—away from children. ✜ Cover all outlets when not in use. ✜ Keep poinsettias and mistletoe out of reach, too. They are pretty, but poisonous.

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Tips for nervous parents of new drivers

Surviving Holiday Stress There are cookies to be baked, gifts to be wrapped, decorations to be hung—and your entire family will be arriving in one hour. Yikes! The holidays can be a stressful time, but they don’t have to be. Here are a few suggestions to help you enjoy the season with your family.

Nationwide, car accidents are the leading cause of death for young adults between the ages of 15 to 20. State patrol troopers across the country are recommending that young drivers take driving courses. The average $300 it costs for the class will more than make up for the expenses incurred in the first accident and could even prevent it.

Hit the Books Try going to the library with your children. Older kids can search for their own books while you help the younger ones. The library is a quiet and peaceful place where you can spend time with your kids having a little “R & R” (reading and relaxing).

The following are a few tips for parents who want to keep an eye out for their children. ➤ Keep driving sessions short but frequent, about 15 to 20 minutes each day, slowly working up to an hour. ➤ Lead by example. Examine your own driving habits to see if there is anything that can be corrected. ➤ Try not to burden your child with too many instructions at once. It will only confuse them. ➤ Try to give directions one at a time, and not all at once. For example: “At the next light, make a left.” ➤ Try not to criticize teens while they are driving. Talk to them when they are no longer behind the wheel. ➤ Discourage eating, drinking, and talking on cell phones while they are driving. This means you should not do any of these things, either. ➤ Urge your children not to take unnecessary risks, whatever the situation.

Name a Date Plan a date (such as December 20th) after which you will do no more shopping, wrapping, stressing, planning, primping, or decorating. Whether the lists are fulfilled or not, be done. Then, start to do things for others such as babysitting for a friend so they can finish shopping, helping others wrap gifts, providing help baking at their house, etc. After all, this is what Christmas is all about— giving to others. Enjoy Each Other’s Company Set aside time for playing family games together, listening to music, and reading Christmas stories. Try to do as much as possible this holiday season as a family. Drive around looking at Christmas lights, help to decorate a church or a nursing home, go see a live nativity scene, make Christmas cookies with the kids while singing Christmas carols, or simply watch a Christmas video while enjoying popcorn and hot chocolate. You’ll enjoy the tradition and NOT the credit card bills in January! Take the focus off the ‘stuff’ and enjoy family time. Kids get the most joy out of time spent with them, not the stuff they open. When they look back on their childhood holidays, they will remember family and fun more than what gifts they received.

—adapted from The Gazette (Colorado Springs, Colo.)

—St. Joseph Parents as Teachers

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…the best care and education this side of heaven! Currently enrolling infants & toddlers in our centrally located multicultural program. Open 7a–5:30p, Monday – Friday. Our teachers are experienced and committed to providing a stimulating learning environment designed with your child in mind! Conveniently located near KU Medical Center; Mission, KS; The Plaza & Westport. I-35 is just minutes away and downtown Kansas City is less than 10. Call us at (913) 3625192 to reserve a space for your little angel today. 2720 W 43rd Ave., Kansas City, KS 66103

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“How wonderful it would be if we could help our children and grandchildren to learn thanksgiving at an early age. Thanksgiving opens the doors. It changes a child’s personality. A child is resentful, negative—or thankful. Thankful children want to give, they radiate happiness, they draw people.” — Sir John Marks Templeton

Holiday Tongue Twister Say this phrase three times as fast as you can. “Pretty packages perfectly packed” An excerpt from

Top Flight Kids Learning Center

222 Terrific Tips for Two: Ideas for a Happy and Lasting Marriage

www.TopFlightKids.org 913-768-4661

by Caryl Krueger

“No Pointing”

300 S. Rogers Rd. (6, B6) Olathe

Shaking fingers may be acceptable when correcting a pet, but it’s a no-no between spouses. Pointing is a form of attack and indicates that the person you’re pointing at has done something terribly wrong. “You” accusations are meant to hurt in order to correct, and hurting rarely brings positive results. In arguing, avoid pointing and pointed comments that begin with “you” (“You lost the key”; “You were late again”; “You spent too much money”). Rather than focus on your so-called opponent, focus on yourself. Tell how the action made you feel (“I feel sad because the vase is broken”; “I was hurt when you didn’t come”; “I’m confused by what happened”). These “I” statements are more likely to get the receptive attention of the spouse than the “you” accusations.

• Child Care • Preschool • Pre-K KQRS 4 Star Rating Accredited By NAEYC Academy

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Quality Child Care For Children Ages 6 Weeks To Pre-K Serving Community For Over 16 Yrs

Laundry Lesson Give each family member a different colored mesh lingerie bag. Have them put their dirty socks in their bag every evening when they undress for bed. When you do laundry, just throw the bags in the washer and dryer. When it’s time to sort and fold, give each family member their bag. Voila! No more lost socks! Mother & Child Reunion makes no endorsement of—and is not responsible for— the advertisers or contributors herein. Mother & Child Reunion currently publishes three editions. The Missouri edition is distributed throughout Jackson County south of the Missouri River. The Johnson County edition is distributed throughout Johnson and Wyandotte Counties in Kansas. The Northland & St. Joseph edition is distributed in most communities north of the Missouri River in the KC metro area and St. Joseph. Mother & Child Reunion is published by Babcock Publishing L.L.C. Send subscription changes of address, comments, or correspondence to the email address of macreunion@aol.com or by mail to Mother & Child Reunion, PO Box 93, Holden, MO 64040. © Copyright 2010 Babcock Publishing L.L.C. All rights reserved. “Mother & Child Reunion” is a registered trademark of Babcock Publishing L.L.C. and its monthly newspapers.

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A Waiting Child Children in need of an adoptive home M e e t N o r m a , M a r c o s a n d M a r i a – ages 10, 4, and 1. This close-knit threesome is looking for a family to adopt them together. Norma is a very loving and affectionate child who is described as friendly and honest. She is very smart and does well in school. Drawing, arts and crafts, playing soccer, and watching movies are some of Norma’s favorite activities. Marcos is an energetic boy who does well in school and has good social skills. He enjoys watching cartoons, playing soccer and baseball. Marcos continues to work on improving his speech and will need continued assistance in his new home. Maria is a happy baby. In addition to talking, she is learning sign language as an alternative means of communications. She will require follow up medical care and may need some physical therapy in the future to help her with walking. To learn more about adoption visit www.adoptkskids.org or call 877-457-5430. The children’s case numbers are CH-5265, CH-5266, and CH-5267.

To find out how to enter to win your copy of this DVD visit:

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Christmas Breakfast When excitement takes over, breakfast might be brushed aside on Christmas morning. One family has an answer—the tradition of opening gifts one at a time, allowing for investigating the gift and also appreciating it. So, while one person is opening and admiring a gift, the others can be breakfasting. This is done by preparing some things the night before and a few others that morning, then placing everything on the coffee table in the midst of the family circle. Tasty breakfast items include blueberry muffins (made earlier and reheated), sausage links on toothpicks, cheese and crackers, salsa and chips, toasted bagel chips, deviled eggs (made the day before), slices of pears and apples, coffee cake (made earlier in the month, frozen, thawed, and heated), Christmas cookies and candies, juice, and coffee. The variety of food means that even the picky eaters will find something they like. And the large amount of food should be sufficient so that no other food is required until Christmas dinner. Taken from Family Traditions; 289 Things to Do Again and Again. Copyright, Caryl Krueger, 28455 Meadow Mesa Lane, Escondido, CA 92026

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Events & Activities (All events and dates are subject to change. Call ahead to verify events you wish to attend. Please tell them you saw it in Mother & Child Reunion!)

Visit MotherAndChildReunion.com for fun family Events & Activities.

OVERLAND PARK ARBORETUM & BOTANICAL GARDENS NOV. 26–27 & DEC. 3–4 Holiday Luminary Walk - 5 to 8:30 pm Stroll down candlelit trails through the gardens and woods and around the ponds at the Overland Park Arboretum & Botanical Gardens' Holiday Luminary Walk. This annual event will be held from 5 to 8:30 pm, two weekends, Friday and Saturday evenings. Admission is $7 per person; children 5 and younger are free. This is a rare opportunity for those who appreciate nature to experience the thrill of the nighttime woods.

NUTCRACKER TEA PARTY DEC. 4 & 5 The Nutcracker Tea Party - Featuring the Legacy School of the Arts Dance Company will be held from noon to 2 pm on Saturday and noon to 2 pm or 4 to 6 pm on Sunday at the Ritz Charles, 9000 W. 137th St. Enjoy finger sandwiches, crudites, fruit and dessert while sipping tea and watching a one hour performance of “The Nutcracker Ballet” at a special tea party Saturday, Dec. 4, and Sunday, December 5, 2010. The kidfriendly menu and world-renowned ballet is sure to delight the young and the old. Available keepsakes include a professional picture of your child or grandchild with a dancer and a keepsake boutique. Tickets, available online, are $40 for adults and $25 for children (under 3 are free). All proceeds benefit public arts programs of the Friends of the Overland Park Arts. Table and patron sponsorships are available, call 913-895-6390.

COUNTRY CLUB PLAZA NOV. 26 Country Club Plaza Lighting Ceremony - 6:45pm The Plaza Lighting Ceremony stage is located at Wyandotte and Nichols Road, just south of 47th Street, across from Restoration Hardware. Parking is available throughout the Plaza. All Plaza parking garages are free and open. Admission is free. 816-753-0100

CROWN CENTER Crown Center, 2450 Grand Blvd., Kansas City, MO 64108. 816-274-8444

NOV. 26 Santa's Arrival - 10am Santa Claus arrives in a horse-drawn carriage to kick off the holiday season. Perry the Penguin, Tip from Crayola, Casey the Bear and other costume characters help greet

Jolly Ol' St. Nick. Join Santa as he enters the Crown Center Shops and makes his way to Crayola Christmas Land. Admission: FREE.

NOV. 26 Mayor's Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony - 5:30pm The 100-foot-tall Mayor's Christmas Tree, one of the nation's tallest, is the centerpiece for an illuminating holiday celebration. 7,200 white lights light up the Mayor's Christmas Tree. This special tree stands as a symbol of the Mayor's Christmas Tree Fund, which helps more than 33,000 people in the Kansas City area have a Merry Christmas each year. Admission: FREE

JOHNSON COUNTY MUSEUM OF HISTORY 6305 Lackman Rd., Shawnee, KS 66217 913-715-2550

DEC. 1 Stone Lion Puppet Theater Presents: “Twas Etc.” - 10–11am Santa is off doing a practice run, so Mrs. Claus decides to get her friends together for a wacky storytelling session of Clement C. Moore's famous poem ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas. A great show for all ages! Admission: $3 per person/$2 members.

ERNIE MILLER NATURE CENTER

CITY MARKET NOV. 27, DEC. 4, 11, 18 Whoville Holidays - 10am–2pm Visit the Whoville Holiday activity area which will take place every Saturday between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Located next to Auntie Em’s on the northeast corner of the Market Square. The Grinch will make an appearance each Saturday and will walk the City Market Square from 10 am–11 am to wish everyone a happy holiday. The Grinch will then be available in the Whoville activity area where all visiting Who's can have your photo taken with the Grinch for a small fee or bring in three or more non-perishable canned good items for the “Help a Who Canned Good Drive” to benefit Harvesters and receive this special keepsake for free. Children will also have the opportunity to make Whoville themed tree ornaments, a Grinch mask and more in the Whoville activity area. A Cindy Lou Who LookAlike-Contest will also take place each Saturday at Noon in the Whoville activity area. The winning Cindy Lou will receive a special holiday prize. Admission: FREE. The City Market, 20 E 5th St., Kansas City, Mo. 64106. 816-842-1271

DEC. 15 Santa's Final Two Visits - 10:30 & 11 am- Fall Season of Animal Tales Storytime. It’s time for Santa animal tales storytime at JCPRD's Ernie Miller Nature Center. Young children (ages two to six) and their parents are invited to come listen and learn about our featured stories, songs, and surprises. All children must be accompanied by an adult. Participants are invited to pack a lunch and stay for a picnic. For cost and registration details please call. This is a pay at site event. Ernie Miller Nature Center, 909 N. Kansas - 7 Highway, Olathe, Kansas. (913) 764-7759

SHAWNEE MISSION PARK, HERITAGE PARK AND KILL CREEK PARK DEC. 26–JAN. 31

Christmas Tree Recycling at Shawnee Mission, Heritage and Kill Creek Parks - 7:30 am to 8:00 pm- Recycling natural Christmas trees helps the environment and JCPRD will help you do your part for FREE! Each year JCPRD collects natural Christmas trees from late DecemNOV. 25-DEC. 31 Christmas In The Park, Longview Lake ber through the end of January from 7:30 am to 8:00 pm. The drop-off sites are the Park - 5:30-10pm, Sun.-Thu.; 5:30-11 parking lots of the Shawnee Mission pm, Fri.-Sat. One of Jackson County Park Marina, Heritage Park Marina and Parks and Recreation's most celebrated Kill Creek Marina. Only natural Christevents of the year. Three hundred thousand lights and 175 animated figures and mas trees, please. No yard waste. There is no charge for the recycling. For addisplashes of Christmas color transform tional information, call District Forester Longview Lake Park into an enchanting Kevin Smith. Shawnee Mission Park winter wonderland. The entire family will Marina - 7900 Renner Rd., Heritage Park delight in the warmth of this fun-filled, Marina - 16050 Pflumm Rd., Kill Creek holiday display gift from your Jackson 11670 South Homestead Lane. (913) County Parks. Admission: Donations for 441-8669 local charities accepted. Longview Lake Campground, 11100 View High Dr,

CHRISTMAS IN THE PARK

11 (816) 524-1350

Kansas City, MO 64134. 816-503-4800

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Parent Support Groups

Oral History

Send your information to macreunion@aol.com no later than the 10th of the month prior. Include the words “Support Group—Kansas” in the subject line.

Nothing satisfies like a good family story. Start with these ideas:  Tell your children stories about how their grandparents lived, went to school, worked, and traveled. This helps children get a sense of their own history and begin to believe they can succeed just as their ancestors did.  Ask young children to tell the story back to you in pictures.  Older children can write their version in their own “family history book.”

PARENTS NIGHT OUT FOR FAMILIES WITH SPECIAL NEEDS Legacy Christian Church hosts a monthly, free Parents Night Out for families with special needs. From 5:30 8:30 p.m., parents can drop off individuals with special needs for a fun night of activities and 1-on-1 care. The event is offered at two locations: 13715 W. 151st St., Olathe, KS and 10150 Antioch Rd., Overland Park, KS. Email alison.boles@gmail.com for dates and to register or call 913.962.5271.

BUILDING BETTER MOMS Enjoy fellowship and fun with moms who can relate to your daily joys and challenges. Building Better Moms is a place to learn and grow as a parent through speakers and discussion, build a supportive network of Moms who “get it”, and serve your community through several outreach opportunities. Join one of 13 groups hosted at Church of the Resurrection for mothers with children newborn through high school, as well as single moms. Choose from a variety of weekday morning and afternoon programs, as well as an evening group. Visit www.cor.org/bbm for more details and registration.

Here’s What You Need 1 tablespoon Epsom salts 1 tablespoon boiling water Small mixing bowl Mixing spoon 1-3 drops food coloring (optional) Jumbo paintbrush Paper

MOMS CLUB OF SHAWNEE-EAST This international support group chapter is for at-home mothers who live in eastern Shawnee, eastern Lenexa, and Merriam. They offer social interaction for both moms and kids through monthly meetings, weekly activities, and playgroups. Call Robin at 913-904-0330 or e-mail info@momsclubofshawneeks.org.

Here’s How You Make It 1. Mix the Epsom salts and the boiling water in the bowl with the spoon. If you want colored paint, stir in the food coloring. 2. Stir the mixture a few times until most of the salt dissolves.

TEEN & YOUNG PARENT It is a great way for teens and young parents to come out and meet one another and earn free baby, maternity and toddler items. Free and childcare is provided. Sharon Baptist Church 13020 S Blackbob Road Olathe, Kansas. Stephanie Winslow is the facilitator and can be reached at 913-907-5908.Provided by Kansas Childrens Service League.

Here’s How You Use It 1. Using a jumbo paintbrush, paint the mixture on a sheet of paper. 2. Set the paper aside to dry. When the water evaporates from the salt mixture, shimmering crystals will appear.

MOMS CLUB OF OLATHE - EAST Meet and support other local stay-at-home moms. This group facilitates playgroups, craft events, outings, recipe clubs, Mom’s Night Out, and more. Meetings are held on the 3rd Monday of each month. Children are welcome. Contact our Membership Vice President at olatheeastmomsclub@gmail.com or visit http://sites.google.com/site/olatheeastmomsclub.

Here’s How You Store It This paint must be used up immediately after you make it. It does not store well. Put any leftover paint in a plastic bag, then toss the bag into the garbage.

MARILLAC SPECIAL NEEDS

ty af r C ea Id

Open to any parents and helps those who have children with special needs or behavioral issues. Free and open to the community. Provided by Kansas Childrens Service League. 913-621-2016 x1211

Information provided by Crafty Concoctions: 101 Shiny,Sparkly, Spooky,Wrinkly,Puffy,Funny,Easy (and Money-Saving) Craft Supplies You Can Make by Sue Hannah.Published by Meadowbrook Press, Minnetonka,Minnesota ©2003.www.meadowbrookpress.com

Visit www.MotherAndChildReunion.com for even more Parenting Support Groups!

(816) 524-1350

● Brush the mixture onto holiday cards or pictures with snowy scenes to make them sparkle.

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An excerpt taken from

Keep children safe during the holidays

The Incredible Indoor Games Book:

Gliders

The cookies, the cakes, the candies, the unusual plants that can spark a child’s curiosity—with all of the hustle and bustle associated with this time of year it is important to remember safety during the holidays. “Unusual plants, food, and decorations can be interesting for some children,” says Laura Fitzmaurice, MD, chief, Emergency Medical Services, Children’s Mercy Hospitals and Clinics. “It is important to watch out for your child during this season to avoid holiday accidents and trips to the Emergency Room.” Following is a list of safety tips for the holidays: Injury Prevention: ✦ Make sure the toys you buy are appropriate for the age of your child. ✦ It is important, with multiple ages of children who attend family gatherings, to have parental supervision at all times. This will avoid mishaps of young children trying things inappropriate for their age. ✦ Keep the games with small pieces out of younger children’s reach. ✦ Opening presents that require scissors and knives should be done by adults or teenage children. ✦ Watch out for glass bulbs from the tree, they can cause injury. Food and drink: ✦ Make sure to clean up after holiday parties, especially alcoholic drinks. Don’t keep alcoholic drinks in the refrigerator, because they can look like juices. It isn’t a good idea to let children “try” an alcoholic drink as they can get hypoglycemia from a very small amount and then suffer a seizure. Activities: ✦ Try to keep a routine and find some quiet time for everyone. The stress of constant activity is wearing on all family members. Decorations: ✦ Artificial balls and other decorations may look good to eat. Make sure your child knows it is fake and is not good to eat. Keeping snacks available will also help with this problem. Plants: ✦ Christmas trees and plants may cause allergic reactions in some people. Watch for rashes and breathing problems. Any poinsettia plants need to be kept away from children who might eat them as they cause irritation and vomiting.

Materials: a plastic drinking straw for each player; 2 paper clips for each player; 1 sheet of 4-1/4” x 11” construction paper for each player (8-1/2” x 11” paper divided in half); a pencil for each player; rulers; scissors Room Arrangement: As is Time: 20 minutes Directions: 1. Everyone may work at tables or desks. Give each player a drinking straw, a piece of paper, two paper clips, and a pencil. Have enough rulers and scissors on hand to share. 2. Each player cuts out two strips of paper, one strip 1” x 9” and the other 1” x 6”. Players should write their names on one of the two strips to avoid any mix-ups later. 3. Slip one of the paper clips into one end of the straw. Make sure that the smaller wire loop is on the inside and the larger loop is on the outside. Slip the other clip on the other end in the same way. Roll each strip of paper into a loop and clip to either end of the straw, making sure that both paper loops are aligned. 4. When everyone is finished, it is time for a test flight. The suggested glider launch position is to hold the glider in the center with the small loop in front. Don’t throw the glider, but gently push it forward so that it will sail. Adjustments can be made to the size of the larger loop to help give the smoothest flight possible. Reprinted with Permission of McGraw-Hill Children’s Publishing. ©1982 www.mhkids.com The Incredible Indoor Games Book: 166 Group Projects, Games, and Activities by Bob Gregson.

Parent’s night out at Let’s Grow Child Care Monday – Friday 4:30—midnight Saturday 9:00 a.m.—midnight Sunday 9 a.m.—6 p.m.

Information provided by Children’s Mercy Hospitals and Clinics. Visit www.childrens-mercy.org

“It is not what you do, but how much love you put into it that matters.”

• Hourly care, age-appropriate activities, & snacks • $3.50—$7.50 per hour • 2 weeks—12years

—Mother Theresa

913-262-2261 • 8718 W. 62nd Terr. (Behind Antioch Library)

(816) 524-1350

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Provided by Cynthia Starks

May your stuffing be tasty, may your turkey be plump. May your taters and gravy have nary a lump, May your yams be delicious, may your pies take the prize, May your Thanksgiving dinner stay off of your thighs.

Riding in the car is a great time to review math facts with your school-aged child or to carry on a meaningful conversation. You are both confined with not much else to do.

“People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” —Bonnie Jean Wasmund

Snow People Craft You will need: ➧ cardboard ➧ pencil ➧ scissors ➧ several sheets of craft foam ➧ tacky glue ➧ pom-poms ➧ felt or fleece ➧ puff paint ➧ ribbon

from

$

Make a snow person template by drawing two (or more) circles that overlap.You can use the bottom of a drinking glass, a jar, or lids from different sized containers as the patterns for your circles. Cut out the template and trace the snow person shape onto the craft foam. Cut out the snow person you have drawn on the foam and let the fun begin. Have your children design and decorate several of their own snow people.They can make scarves and hats out of the fleece or felt, give them facial features with the puffy paint, and add pom-poms for an extra 3-D touch. Make them fun, make them funny, and make them unique! Your snow people can be attached to a ribbon to make a garland, or placed around the house as winter decorations.You can use the snow people as place cards at the dinner table or invent a new game and let your children play hide-and-seek the snow people!

$

$ $ $$

Your business that works around your

$

family could be your answer! Call Cheryl at 816.767.1436

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• Preschool, Pre-Kindergarten, & Child Care • Starting at age 2-1/2 • Located at College & Lackman in Southlake Technology Park NOW • Open 7am–6pm ENROLLING! • Privately owned and operated

—Craft provided by Kaleidoscope, Kansas City, Missouri.

(816) 524-1350

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Are you 100% satisfied with your current financial status? Are you ready to improve it?

(913) 888-7244 www.buildingblockscdc.com

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Visit MotherAndChildReunion.com for a chance to win a Barbie Movie DVD! A Parenting, Educational, and Health Resource Monthly • Volume 14 •...

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