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february 2020

So much to love!

Creative ways to show your child how much you care Little Teeth, Big Smiles! Help your child have a positive experience at the dentist

Rethink Your Drink

Ready to get the sugar out of your child’s diet?

Romantic restaurant s for date night! MONTEREY BAY PARENT • February 2020






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Contents FEBRUARY 2020

Monterey Bay


P.O. Box 806 Pacific Grove, CA 93950 MontereyBayParent.com 831-582-1373

Publisher Andrea Breznay abreznay@ montereybayparent.com 831-582-1373 Sales Executive Cherilyn Miller cmiller@ montereybayparent.com 831-582-1770 Cover Photographer Michelle Findlay

in each issue: 08 Military Mom News, stories, and events for our military community from Brandi Jones. 10 Father’s Day Local dad, Rob Weisskirch covers parenting topics from a dad’s point of view. 12 Dear Teacher Two experienced teachers answer your education questions. 14 Grandma Says Tricia Vlasak, a wise grandmother of two, gives her take on navigating this special relationship.

18 Creative Ways to Tell Your Child “I Love You!”. Fourteen doable ways to show your child (or spouse, parent, friend or coworker) how much you care. by Kimberly Blaker

Contributing Writers kimberly blaker brandi jones sonja joubert susan meister tricia vlasak rob weisskirch Editorial Submissions are welcome. We reserve the right to edit, reject or comment editorially on all material contributed. We cannot be responsible for return of any unsolicited materials. Articles and advertisements in Monterey Bay Parent do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the publisher nor does the publisher assume responsibility for statements made by our advertisers or editorial contributors. Acceptance of advertising by Monterey Bay Parent does not constitute an endorsement of the products, services or information. We do not knowingly present any product or service which is fraudulent or misleading in nature. Monterey Bay Parent is available free of charge at over 250 distribution points throughout Monterey and Santa Cruz counties as well as digitally at www. MontereyBayParent.com. Monterey Bay Parent is ©2020 by Monterey Bay Parent, LLC. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part without written permission is strictly prohibited.



16 Five Romantic Restaurants You’ll Fall in Love With. Celebrate your Valentine (or any special occasion!) with a memorable dinner out at one these special restaurants. by Sonja Joubert

FUN STUFF! 24 Calendar of Events: Find dozens of family events from throughout the Monterey Bay area.

20 Set the Stage for a Positive Dental Visit for Your Child. February is National Children’s Health Month and it’s the perfect time to help your child feel better about a visit to the dentist. by Kimberly Blaker 22 Rethink Your Drink. A significant contributor to obesity, prediabetes, and dental cavities are sugary drinks. Learn more about a state-wide initiative to educate parents on the importance of eliminating unnecessary added sugars from your child’s diet. by Susan Meister MONTEREY BAY PARENT • February 2020

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JAZZ & CONTEMPORARY INTENSIVE from the publisher… So much love! I’m a sucker for displays of affection. Saccharine sweet cards, mushy Instagram posts, flowers for no reason–it all makes me happy. At a time when a lot of people are behaving badly, a little extra love towards those you care about is a really good thing. That’s why I love Kimberly Blaker’s article “Creative Ways to Say I Love You” on page 18. She offers fourteen doable suggestions that anyone you care about would appreciate. Don’t limit it to your children–send your mom, dad, or best friend a Valentine’s Day card this year! I promise you they will be thrilled.


el Rancho Shopping Center Suite B-6 Carmel, CA 93923

The Y is GOOD for your Heart!

If you’re looking to celebrate Valentine’s Day romantically this year, check out Sonja Joubert’s article on 14. She consulted with the members of our Facebook group to find five romantic suggestions for a special dinner. I haven’t been to two on the list, and I’m looking forward to remedying that soon.


FOR WINTER 2019/2020


Tia Brown Laura Jeselnick



Happy Valentine’s Day. Have a love-filled month.


Andrea Breznay/Publisher


on the cover



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This month we welcome a new columnist. Tricia Vlasak is a friend of mine going way back. I’ve always known her to offer honest, down-to-Earth advice, and now she’s sharing it with you. As a grandmother of two, she’s in a unique position to share her take on how to make the relationship with your grandchildren and with their parents as smooth and positive as possible. Welcome to the team, Tricia.

Kiara (Kiki) Leng is the twoand-a-half year old daughter of Jeff and Kim Leng. She loves to be with her older brother and sister, Zackary and Aiyani. In her spare time, she enjoys playing with Play Doh, doing puzzles, reading, being outside, and eating cheese and bread.

Photo by Tatiana Scher 831-566-7225 www.tscher.com MONTEREY BAY PARENT • February 2020

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MONTEREY BAY SPOUSES CLUB According to their website, The Monterey Bay Spouses Club, “is a non-profit organization focused on providing enrichment and mentoring for military spouses in the Monterey area through planned social and fellowship events.” The MBSC provides philanthropic support through college scholarships for military dependents. The Monterey Bay Officers’ Spouses Club was established in 1961 when three spouse organizations from The Naval Post Graduate School merged to create the Officers’ Wives Club. The organization was renamed the Monterey Bay Spouse Club in 2019, and today the club boasts nearly 200 members. Members are officer and enlisted spouses from the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS), Defense Language Institute (DLI), Naval Support Activity Monterey (NSAM), Department of Defense employees, and international students. MBSC was established to encourage friendships; promote social, cultural, and recreational activities for the members; and to support charitable organizations. The club has several openings on the board, is seeking vol-


February 29th 9-12 pm La Mesa Community Center $5 early admission from 8:15-9 am Free admission from 9-12 pm Proceeds from this event will benefit ways and means of the organization. www.mbspousesclub.com



military mom by Brandi Jones dear teacher by Peggy Gisler and Marge Eberts

unteers for their Spring fundraiser, and also has some co-chair positions currently open to help run special interest groups. CHAPLAIN’S DAY February 3rd is Chaplain’s Day, honoring four military chaplains who gave their lives to save their fellow service members during WWII. The men who came to be known as the “Four Chaplains” were Reverend George L. Fox, Reverend Clark V. Poling, Alexander D. Goode (Ph.D.), and Father John P. Washington. The four met while attending Chaplains School at Harvard. On Feb. 3, 1943, German submarine U-223 torpedoed the ship the men were aboard. The explosion caused the ship to lose all electricity and in the darkness, panic set in, and many men were trapped. The four chaplains worked together to try to calm and help as many men as they could. On Dec. 19, 1944, Congress posthumously awarded each of the chaplains the Purple Heart and the Distinguished Service Cross. Congress also attempted to confer the Medal of Honor on each chaplain posthumously. However, this medal required heroism performed “under fire,” and they did not technically qualify. Members of Congress then authorized the Four Chaplains’ Medal, a special medal. A unanimous act of Congress approved it, and the medals were presented to the next of kin of each chaplain on Jan. 18, 1961. USO BIRTHDAY IN FEBRUARY February 4 is the official birthday of the organization known as United Ser-

vice Organizations or USO. Founded in 1941, the agency is a private, not-forprofit organization working in cooperation with the Department of Defense. The USO receives funding through donations, philanthropy, and corporate support. More than twelve thousand volunteers work with the USO at locations worldwide including military bases, airports, and major metro areas. The closest USO to Monterey is located at San Francisco International Airport Terminal 1. For more information on the USO check www.uso.org. COAST GUARD RESERVE BIRTHDAY February 19 is the official birthday of the United States Coast Guard Reserve. Officially set-up in the late 1930s as a “civilian reserve” operation, it was nonmilitary in nature. The “regular” Coast Guard was formed in 1790. It wasn’t until much later that Auxiliary and Reserve operations would be added to this branch of military service. For additional information on the Coast Guard Reserve, check www.gocoastguard.com. Station Monterey possesses two 47-foot Motor Life Boats (MLBs). In addition to the “47s,” Station Monterey also has a 29-foot Response Boat, Small (RBS). The Dolphin Class helicopter (aka “helo”) is based at both Air Station San Francisco and Air Station Sacramento, and often come to the Monterey Bay area for air-operations training (“helo ops”) with Station Monterey boat crews. For information on Station Monterey, check http://wow.uscgaux. info/content.php?unit=113-0604&category=our-home-port.


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Developing Your Identity as a Father The more a man sees himself as a “dad,” the more likely he is to be involved with his children.


hen I read comic books, it seemed silly that people couldn’t tell that Clark Kent is Superman, Peter Parker is Spiderman, and Bruce Wayne is Batman. Only the people close to them knew their true identities, but who were they–the superhero who appeared occasionally or the day-to-day person? In the real world, it is much harder to separate your identities. As we become fathers, we have to re-frame how we see ourselves. Unlike mothers, who have nine months of physical growth inside them and the social attention of pregnancy to develop their sense of motherhood, fathers have less of a build-up towards becoming a father. In some ways, for dads, I think fatherhood is a bit abstract until the baby arrives. Experts have found that once men become fathers, they make significant life changes in their relationships with their partners, their families, in their leisure activities, their work-life, and interests, and values. These shifts result



in the development of a father identity. There is a direct line between developing a father identity and father involvement. The more a man sees himself as a “dad,” the more likely he is to be involved with his children. Recently, a friend who was potentially separating from his wife said that he was having a hard time because his identity was so wrapped in being a father and husband. He couldn’t see himself differently from being in those roles. His statement made me think about how much being a father shapes who we are and how we view ourselves. I know that for many young fathers, becoming a father made them grow up–they had to mature quickly, given their responsibilities in raising children. I came to being a father later in life. So, much of my identity was formed and was then re-negotiated with the responsibilities and joys of fatherhood. This is an ongoing challenge. Research supports the idea that people begin exploring their iden-

Father’s day by Rob Weisskirch

tities as teens and then consolidate them in their 20s to create a feeling of who they are that remains pretty consistent. Identities continue to evolve based on life experience, but the idea is that the person who you are stays the same after young adulthood. When I am around younger dads, I often think about what their experience is like fusing who you are as an individual and your role as a dad. The negotiation of who you are might be easier when you’re young because the person who you are is less settled. There is the opportunity to fold in the experience of fatherhood into the person you are (and to make you a better version of yourself). At the same time, it might also be easier as an older dad because parenthood might be more deliberate, and, perhaps, an older dad is more mindful of the necessary changes that take place. There is little doubt that these shifts in identity occur and then influence the fathering behavior that takes place. For fathers, few outlets help dads learn to become dads. Studies on dads have found that father identity is “somewhat discretionary” and that the role of being a dad is less defined. Nonetheless, according to a 2015 study from the Pew Research Center, fathers said parenthood was extremely important to their identity at the same rate as did mothers. So, the notion that men see themselves separately from their roles as fathers is false. Once men become fathers, that role becomes part of who we are (tights and capes are optional). Once you become a dad, you gain the power to shape a kid’s life. And, to quote the Spiderman movie, “with great power comes great responsibility.” I remain optimistic that today there are fewer pressures on dads to keep identities separate. You can keep your superhero identity as a dad and save the world every day, for your kids. Robert (Rob) S. Weisskirch, MSW, Ph.D., CFLE is a Professor of Human Development at California State University, Monterey Bay and is a Certified Family Life Educator. He and his wife are parents to a chatty 5-year-old daughter and reside in Marina.


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dear teacher by Peggy Gisler and Marge Eberts

THIS MONTH: Learning Disabilities, Homework, Standardized Testing Learning More about Learning Disabilities

QUESTION: My little boy is bright, but he is not doing at all well in school. Something is just not working for him. Is it possible that he has a learning disability? Exactly what are learning disabilities, and where can I learn more about them? ANSWER: Learning disabilities are neurobiological differences in brain structure and/or function. These differences lead to problems with learning. New brain scanning techniques have enabled scientists to understand the underlying neural basis of learning disabilities. Children with learning disabilities are often just as intelligent or more intelligent than other children but have difficulty learning because their minds process words or information differently. Parents are often the first to notice the problems their children are having learning. The National Institute of Child Health and Human Development lists these eight signs that a child may have a learning disability. • Difficulty with reading and/or writing • Problems with math skills • Difficulty remembering • Problems paying attention • Trouble following directions • Poor coordination • Difficulty with concepts related to time • Problems staying organized You will get a solid start to having reliable information about learning disabilities by visiting the website of the Learning Disabilities Association of America (ldaamerica.org). Not only can you learn about the 13 categories of disabilities under the law, but you can find out the signs and symptoms of each one as well as strategies that can be used to help children. In addition, this website lets you ask questions of experts and provides support as well as resources. We must caution you that it is not always easy for parents of children



with learning disabilities to get the help their children need and are entitled to receive without being proactive and determined as schools sometimes drag their heels in providing this help. Early diagnosis of a child’s learning disability and intervention by parents, teachers, or doctors can significantly improve the child’s self-esteem, academic achievement, and ability to form and maintain relationships.

Time That Students Should Spend on Homework

QUESTION: I think children in elementary and middle school are spending too much time on homework. How much time should they be spending? ANSWER: How much time children should spend on homework is fairly well established. Starting in first grade, they should spend about 10 minutes a night. Then for each successive grade, add another 10 minutes. Using this formula, a fifth grader should have approximately 50 minutes of homework, and a sixth grader an hour. How much homework children actually have depends on their individual teachers. When middle schools have a homework policy, children are likely to have to spend the same amount of time on homework most nights. In elementary school and some classes in middle school, students often begin their homework assignments in class so teachers can be sure they understand what they need to do. If children use this time wisely, their homework time will be reduced. If you think that your children are spending too much time on homework, talk to their teachers. They may have suggestions about ways this time can be reduced. There is also the possibility that a teacher does not realize how lengthy the assignments are. A homework contract definitely helps many students handle this task in an efficient way. You can download one from our Dear Teacher website.

Here are some helpful tips to help children to learn to tackle their homework in a shorter time: • Teach them how to organize and tackle their homework. • Make sure they understand the assignment before they begin. • Make sure their homework spot has all the materials they will need.

Time to Evaluate Children’s Progress in School

Parents: Your children are slightly more than halfway through the school year. If they are having problems in any of their classes, there is still plenty of time to turn things around. Begin by talking to their teachers. Find out what help is needed to get them back on track and where it will be available– school, tutoring, learning center.

Parents’ Role in Standardized Testing

QUESTION: I know that the second semester brings many standardized tests. How can I help my kids stay calm and focused? Do I need to do anything to help them prepare for these tests? ANSWER: You don’t want to stress your children out about standardized tests. You can help them avoid being tense by having them recall past academic successes so they will feel confident going into the tests. You don’t really need to do anything to help them prepare for these tests. This is their teachers’ job. Parents should send questions and comments to dearteacher@dearteacher. com or to the Dear Teacher website.


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grandma says by Tricia Vlasak

Gift Giving Gone Wild?

Communicating is key when navigating how, what, and when to buy presents for your grandchildren


ow that the holidays are over and there’s a little time until the next gift giving opportunity, can we discuss grandparents and gift giving? Love it or hate it, many grandparents enjoy spoiling our grandkids. Most of us have more time and money than we did as young parents, and we love nothing more than sharing both with our precious grandbabies. Unfortunately, gift-giving can sometimes cause issues between parents and grandparents. Read any parenting magazine or blog article on the topic and you will usually find one giving parents advice on how to manage grandparents’ giftgiving. The list of complaints from parents is long: grandparents spend too much, they give too much “stuff,” their gifts upstage mom and dad’s gifts, they aren’t age-appropriate, they go against the parents’ values. And sometimes it’s as simple as not having enough room for more stuff. From this grandma’s viewpoint, most of the complaints from parents are valid. But some of the advice in these articles is just crazy-talk. I read one piece giving the reader “5 Ways to Keep Grandparents’ Gift Giving Under Control.” One of them suggested having the grandparent come over to your house and clean up your playroom at the end of each day. Uhhhhh, no. That won’t be happening–been there, done that, and I did my time! Thankfully, my daughter and her husband pretty much give us grandparents free reign when it comes to gift-giving for the kids. In return, I pay attention and put a lot of thought into what gifts will please my grandkids



and their parents. But I do have a few suggestions that may make gift giving less stressful for everyone. If you are a grandparent, here is some food for thought. (If you are a parent, feel free to share with the grandparents in your life): • Pay attention to your grandkids’ personalities. Do they seem scattered and unfocused when they open presents? Do they seem to find too many gifts overwhelming? If they are a more anxious child, this could be the case, and quality will be much more important than quantity. Or is your grandchild a whirling dervish, excited to be ripping open present after present, and loving all the attention? If you don’t see your grandchildren often, their parents are the best source of information and suggestions regarding this. They know their kids the best, so listen to them. • Remember that you raised one of your grandchild’s parents. Do you trust that you did a good job? When they make their wishes known regarding gift-giving, don’t question them. Trust them and respect them. If you are over fifty, you were raised in the age of consumption: too much was never enough. But this is a different time. Parents are more conscious of their impact on the environment. As a result, they may want wooden toys rather than plastic. Or they may be raising their kids in a gender-neutral environment, and don’t want baby dolls for the girls and trucks for the boys.

Consider giving the gift of your time. If you don’t live reasonably close, this isn’t as easy. But, if you do, why not plan out a “date” with your grandchildren every month? Give them a calendar with pictures of something they love (dogs, cats, skateboarding, etc.), and write in a monthly activity. The zoo, a museum, shopping, an amusement park–making memories is so much better than more “stuff,” and they last longer than any toy. (Obviously, you’d need to discuss the dates with the parents!) If you live further away, perhaps it is possible to plan a more extended visit with just your grandkids.

The bottom line is communication and trust. Grandparents, trust that the people you raised know what they’re doing. Talk to them about how you can enrich the lives of your grandchildren through gift-giving. And, parents, remember that grandparents can play a vital role in helping you raise your children. We can provide extra cushion during hardships and time-crunches, and we can help create a secure connection to family with your kids. Please give us some leeway when we want to spoil those babies. There is nothing like the love of a grandparent. The more people in a child’s life who love and support them, the happier and healthier they will be! tricia vlasAK is a mother, grandparent, and wife. She works in law enforcement when she isn’t writing about parenting, hiking with her dogs, or going on Jeep adventures.



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by Sonja Joubert

Five Romantic Restaurants you’ll fall in love with


he Monterey area is home to hundreds of beautiful, romantic restaurants — with many right on the water offering picturesque views. With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, there’s no better time to try one. Any of the following five restaurants would be perfect for Valentine’s Day or another romantic evening: Affina, Carmel-by-the-Sea Modern bistro meets New American classics in this beautiful Carmel restaurant with an open-beam ceiling. Choose an appetizer like steamed manilla clams, grilled cheese or house poutine to share with your special someone. Finish with entrees like chicken piccata, pasta Bolognese, “Mary’s Fried Chicken,” and more. “They have a great menu and amazingly delicious meals but the location is convenient, cozy, candlelit and my absolute favorite is the beautiful white baby grand piano and player that comes on towards the evening,” said local Violet Giovanni. “So romantic and you can request songs to be played! Just enough room for a few couples to dance by the piano. We enjoyed a local woman celebrating her 98th birthday that jumped on the piano and played some amazing pieces and offered to play requests too.” 6th Ave and San Carlos St., Carmel, 93921 831-250-7744 www.affinacarmel.com Hours: 5-11 pm Monday-Wednesday and 11 am-11 pm Thursday-Sunday



Bistro Moulin, Monterey This cozy bistro located a block above Cannery Row is known for its classic French cuisine and wine selections. The chef, Didier Dutertre, opened the restaurant inspired by Parisian cafes. His simple yet elegant menu includes items like coq au vin, moules frites and confit de canard. “The atmosphere is incredibly welcoming and cozy but in a French countryside sort of a way, not a ‘I’m using cozy as a euphemism for small kind of way,’” said Carmel resident Michelle Arnold Dominguez. “It feels intimate with the low lighting and decor and the food, which is as authentic as it is fabulous, begs to be shared. Every time I walk in, I feel like it’s an occasion to enjoy a glass of something bubbly and feel like there’s nowhere I’d rather be.” 867 Wave Street Monterey, CA 93940 831-333-1200 www.bistromoulin.com Hours: 5-9 pm daily Nepenthe, Big Sur This California fare eatery sits on a Big Sur cliffside, making it a perfectly romantic spot. There’s also a terrace where you can sip one of their 400+ wines. Their dinner menu has items like duck leg confit, steak frites, California beet salad, and the famous “Ambrosiaburger.” “It is perfect for a romantic dinner,” said Gonzales resident Emily Rios. “Make sure to sit out on the patio and watch the sunset with your sweetie while having some great food and wine. You can make a whole day of it by maybe visiting Julia Pfeiffer State Park for a short hike with more stunning views and then meander the Nepenthe gift shop.” 48510 Highway One, Big Sur, 93920 831-667-2345

www.nepenthe.com Hours: 11:30 am-10 pm daily Patria, Salinas This Salinas restaurant is more than just Italian — it’s also German and French inspired. They serve housemade pastas, traditional schnitzel, flatbread pizzas and more. Their “Farm Plate” entrees feature meats and seafood like rabbit, Salmon, Lamb, Veal and Scallops. The rustic decor transports you to Europe and sets the mood for a romantic evening. “Patria in old Town Salinas is a great intimate date night place,” said local Steven Olsen. “Good food, calm atmosphere, won’t break the bank either.” 228 Main Street, Salinas, 93901 831-424-5555 Hours: 5-8 pm Tuesday-Thursday, 5-9 pm Friday and Saturday Shadowbrook, Capitola With the slogan “Romance in dining since 1947,” you know this Santa Cruz county restaurant/attraction will fit the bill, complete with quirky dining rooms, a lounge, a cable car and California cuisine. Entrees include dishes like lobster tail, chicken marsala, fresh swordfish, and chateau sirloin. Monterey resident Mckayla Deal says Shadowbook is extremely unique. “They have beautiful gardens and lots of history,” she said. “To get down to the restaurants entrance there’s a tram/elevator that goes down the side of the hill. It’s just really fun, but fancy at the same time!” 1750 Wharf Rd, Capitola, 95010 831-475-1511 www.shadowbrook-capitola.com Hours: (Dining room) 4:30-8:45 pm Monday-Friday, 3:30-9 pm Saturday and 2-8:45 pm Sunday





Creative Ways to Tell Your Child

‘I Love You’

Valentine’s Day is a perfect reason to show your child just how much he or she is loved. Try these creative ideas to show how much you care on Valentine’s Day and throughout the entire year. EDIBLE IDEAS 1. A heart a day. Add a heartshaped candy to your child’s lunch box every day of the school year. Be sure to stock up during after-Valentine’s Day clearances, so you don’t run out. 2. Heart-shaped lunch. Use a large, heart-shaped cookie cutter to make heart-shaped sandwiches, toast, and other treats. Your kids will love the shape and that you’ve eliminated the crust. 3. A cupful of love. Give your child a “World’s Greatest Son/Daughter” or “I Love You” cup. Then use it whenever you serve hot cocoa or graham crackers and milk.



5. Love is silly. One thing kids love and do best is act silly, so loosen up, and join in the fun. If being silly isn’t your style, take a few lessons from your child, and practice up. It’s a great way to reduce stress and to let your children know they’re fun to be around.

9. A poet and didn’t know it. You don’t have to be a poet to write a poem for your child. If poetry isn’t your thing, look up simple children’s rhymes. Then make revisions, especially for your child. Poems can be serious or fun, but either way, your child will love it.

6. A class connection. As kids grow, togethertime becomes increasingly rare. Decide with your adolescent on an activity the two of you would enjoy together. Sign up for a class or set a regular schedule for the activity. Treat it as you would any other commitment, not letting daily life interfere. 7. Eventful gifts. Buy tickets to a concert, ice show, or sporting event your kids have been dying to see. But keep it a surprise. On the day of the event, just say you’re all going out for dinner or some other concoction. Then catch your kids by surprise when you arrive at your actual destination.

8. Make a date. Plan a regular date with your child for one-onone time. Set a regular schedule so your child can look forward to your dates to4. Do lunch. Pick up your child from school for a gether. surprise lunch date. Hit your child’s favorite fastfood joint, go on a picnic, or have lunch together in the school cafeteria. (If you choose the latter, make sure your child won’t mind or be embarrassed.)



10. A valentine’s welcome. Welcome your child home from school with a valentine banner across your front porch or entryway. Add cute sayings that remind your child why he’s the greatest son. Create fun sentences by clipping words from magazine ads, and add some valentine doodles. 11. Say it with email. Send your child an email with a link to a fun website or a funny animated e-greeting. With the abundance of entertaining websites and free e-greetings, you can send your child something new every day of the year. 12. Scrabble greetings. Wish your child a “Happy Valentine’s Day,” congratulate him on a great report card, or show how much you appreciate your child’s help with a scrabble message. For younger readers, spell out a simple phrase leaving a space between words. For older kids, make them figure out your greeting. Intersect the words as you would in playing Scrabble, and see if they can solve the message. 13. C is for….. Make a poster portraying your child’s characteristics. Put your child’s name at the top. Then list as many positive descriptive words as you can that begin with your child’s initial. Use a thesaurus to find oodles of words. When you finish, laminate or frame it, and hang it in your child’s room. 14. Snail mail surprise. Kids love to get mail, so why not send your child a card, letter, or postcard? Don’t forget to let your child check the mail to discover the greeting. by Kimberly Blaker





By Kimberly Blaker

Set the Stage for a Positive Dental Visit for Your Child


hildren’s visits to the dentist are typically a positive experience for both parents and kids alike. Still, between 9 and 15% of American adults fear going to the dentist, according to Cleveland Clinic. When parents are anxious about the dentist, that nervousness can instill fear and anxiety in their child, too. Adults and kids may fear going to the dentist for several reasons. Cleveland Clinic explains that perhaps the adult or child had a negative experience at the dentist or has heard horror stories that exaggerate their fears. Fear of pain is the most common cause of anxiety. While some people also worry about the effectiveness or side effects of anesthesia or have a fear of needles.

A negative experience at the dentist as a child can result in continued anxiety over routine dental care into adulthood. So, learn how to prepare for your child’s first and subsequent visits to the dentist to ensure a positive, successful experience. This will help pave the road to a lifelong devotion to receiving routine dental care on a consistent basis as your child grows. Your child and the dentist – building a positive relationship early on The earlier your child begins going to the dentist, the better. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommends a first visit should be by the time your child turns one or within 6 months of when the first tooth erupts. At this stage, your child’s visit will be quick, simple, and pain-free. Providing your child with early positive experiences will help your child develop trust in the dentist. Depending on your child’s age and the dental office policies, many dentists will ask you to remain in the lobby during your child’s checkup. Typically, this is recommended for children over

the age of 3. There’s a good reason for this. Separating a child from parents usually results in fuller cooperation from children. This can go a long way toward a more positive experience for your child. When your child is placed in the care of the dental staff, they’ll try to make your child’s first experience fun and informative. The dentist will explain and demonstrate routine procedures to your child and then perform those procedures. Your child quickly learns the dentist is someone to trust. Down the road, if your child needs non-routine dental work, the dentist will work with your child in a similar fashion to help alleviate fears. If you’re still concerned with sending your child in alone, call and ask to speak with the dentist or hygienist. Avoid causing your child alarm, and make the call in private so your child doesn’t pick up on your anxiety. Explain your specific concerns so the dentist can address and alleviate your worries. Approaching scared or uncooperative children For a variety of reasons, some children become fearful or uncooperative during a visit to the dentist. If your child arrives unprepared or senses your anxiety, your child may develop undue worry. A previous experience could also cause stress. Children who are ill or have a physical or mental disability, a behavioral disorder, or developmental delay may also be challenging to treat. Whatever the reason, the way your dentist handles your child’s fears and behavior is vital to your child’s emotional well being and ability to cope with future visits. The American

February is National Children’s Dental Health Month. For resources check the American Dental Association website at ADA.org.




Academy of Pediatric Dentistry has developed guidelines for behavior management that dentists should follow. Your dentist should use the communication techniques learned in dental school, including positive reinforcement, distraction, voice control, non-verbal communication, and the tellshow-do approach. These techniques all help reassure patients and gain their trust. In most cases, these approaches are sufficient, leading to visits that end on a positive note. If a practitioner lacks the expertise for handling a situation, your child should be referred to a dentist with the appropriate skills. Prevent an experience that heightens your child’s fears by being proactive • Contact your state’s board of dentistry when choosing a practitioner to make sure no disciplinary actions have been taken. • Inform your dentist of any medical, behavior, or other conditions that might affect your child’s visit. That way the dentist can communicate with the child accordingly. • Pediatric dentists have specialized training for dealing with situations that can arise with children. If you suspect your child may have difficulty with dental visits, seek a pediatric dentist. Six tips to get your child off on the right track 1. Tell your child about the benefits of going to the dentist to help keep their teeth strong and healthy and so they’ll have a nice smile. 2. Read to your child before their first visit to the dentist. Try one of the following: Why We Go to the Dentist by Rosalyn Clark The Berenstain Bears Visit the Dentist by Stan Berenstain and Jan Berenstain Celebrate! Going to the Dentist by Sophia Day Dentist Trip (Peppa Pig) by Scholastic Curious George Visits the Dentist by H.A. Rey 3. Also, express positive feelings about your own dental experiences. Don’t discuss non-routine procedures such as fillings. Explain to your child the basic procedures your child will undergo. For example, the dentist will count your child’s teeth and look at them with a tiny mirror. Avoid frightening terminology. 4. As your child grows, if you have concern over a possible cavity, don’t give your child too much information. This can result in undue anxiety. Your dentist should have the experience and expertise to talk to your child about such procedures in a manner that alleviates any anxiety your child might experience. 5. If your child is anxious, don’t try to soothe your child by lying about a procedure or possible pain. Instead, try to alleviate fears that may be out of proportion to the situation. 6. Finally, offer coping strategies to your child. Have your child practice taking long deep breaths. If you know you’ll be attending your child throughout the procedure (speak to your dentist first to confirm this), you can offer your hand to squeeze. KIMBERLY BLAKER is a freelance parenting and lifestyle writer. She also writes content and blog posts for businesses. Find her at kimberlyblaker.com MONTEREY BAY PARENT • February 2020

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Rethink Your Drink Extra Sugar Causes Long-Term Health Problems by Susan Meister

For some time, the consumption of too much sugar has been widely recognized as a major cause of such adverse health outcomes as obesity, prediabetes, dental cavities, and even long-term cardiovascular risk. A principal contributor to these conditions are sugary drinks, or SSBs, as they are known to dieticians. Among the top consumers of these SSBs In Monterey County are children from ages 2 to 17 who have at least one of these drinks per day. Such drinks add as much as 45 percent of additional, unneeded calories and significantly contribute to the national public health problem of obesity in children. Why are parents allowing their children to consume these drinks? According to Niaomi Hrepich, Health Program Coordinator for the Monterey County Health Department and a registered dietician, “People are bombarded by messages from the companies that make these drinks and parents don’t realize how detrimental they are. They don’t know the facts about how much sugar is in them. They see everyone giving their kids soda so they think it’s okay, and they are un-



aware that children should have only six teaspoons of sugar per day. Even in drinks with natural sugar, like 100 percent orange juice, the recommendation is that children take in only 4-6 oz per day. More than that is considered added sugar.” The obesity rate in children from ages 12-17 in Monterey County is 31 percent, compared with the California rate of 34 percent. While that looks favorable for the County, a survey of adolescents on the Central Coast found that teens consume more SSBs in every category than other age groups. Twenty-three percent of adolescents (nearly 1 in 4) reported consuming no plain water drinks within the previous 24 hours, even though they describe them such drinks as satisfyingly thirst quenching. This is precisely the age group that SSB marketeers most aggressively target. Even more concerning is the high consumption of SSBs among the youngest population, 1-10 year olds. According to a comprehensive study by The Nutrition and Fitness Collaborative of the Central Coast, 72 percent of this population consumed at least

one soda within a 24 hour timeframe, 64 percent consumed a sweetened tea or fruit-flavored beverage, 44 percent had at least one sports drink, and 56 percent had at least one blended drink. The study authors go on to say, “What was most surprising and concerning, however, was the high level of consumption of coffee beverages which often contain large amounts of sugar by these young children -- 35 percent consumed at least one serving of a coffee beverage in the previous 24 hours.” A state-wide initiative, “Rethink Your Drink” may be the best offense against the SSB industry’s marketing offensive. This and other educational programs available throughout the county strive to educate parents on the importance of creating healthy dietary habits that include eliminating the unnecessary added sugars that make items like SSBs so appealing. The Rethink Your Drink is a state-wide initiative to educate parents on the importance of creating healthy dietary habits that include eliminating unnecessary added sugars like those found in sugary drinks.


University of California, San Francisco, having documented the health impact of a soda sales ban on its employees, has banned such drinks from its campus and substituted bottled water or zero-calorie beverages instead. The reward has been a reduction in waist sizes and belly fat, and more important, improvements in insulin resistance, a risk factor for Type 2 diabetes. These facts, according to Elissa Epel, an author of the study that documented them, “...show that an environmental change can help people, particularly those who are consuming large amounts of sugary beverages.” Other campuses have followed UCSF’s lead. In addition to public education initiatives, state Senator Bill Monning, a long-time advocate of reducing the consumption of SSBs, has introduced multiple pieces of legislation to limit them. Monning has introduced a new bill that would require warning labels on drinks that have added calories above a certain level, depending on the quantity of fluid ounces in those drinks. This bill is widely supported by leading medical organizations among others but is unsurprisingly opposed by manufacturers and their allies. Warning labels have been

shown to be an effective deterrent to the excessive use of tobacco and alcohol, and could bring about a similar reduction in SSB consumption. Since obesity and diabetes are two major contributors to healthcare costs in the United States, every measure to reduce them, whether through public education or warning labels, can yield longterm economic benefits. Senator Monning’s bill should therefore have strong public support. Parents struggle daily against the demands of sugar-loving children who are surrounded by peers downing SSBs on a daily basis, often multiple times. The most effective bulwarks against this destructive trend is education, supplemented by warning labels. Niaomi Hrepich believes one more element that could propel County children into an even better place is the participation of our local hospitals and clinics. “They play such a huge role in children’s health that their embrace of our educational campaign would be a significant compounding factor in advancing our goals.” Susan Meister is a journalist, columnist, and community activist living in Pebble Beach.


Recommendations for children by age: 0-6 months: Breast milk or infant formula provide the proper nutrition and fluids for babies. 6-12 months: Breast milk or infant formula can still be the main contributor for fluids and nutrition. As solid foods are introduced, try giving small sips of water with food to teach cup-drinking skills and get them used to the taste. 12-24 months: As babies begin to eat more solid food, plain whole milk and larger quantities of water can be introduced. Small amounts of 100% fruit juice can be used to meet daily fruit intake recommendations- no more than ½ cup. 2-3 years: Begin to transition to plain, fat free (skim) or low-fat (1%) milk. Increase daily water intake to meet fluid needs-up to 4 cups per day. Continue to provide 100% fruit juice in limited quantities. 4-5 years: Continue to increase water intake up to 5 cups per day. Fat free (skim) or low-fat (1%) milk can be provided. Continue to provide 100% fruit juice in limited quantities.



Calendar feBruary 2020

FOR MORE INFO ON EVENTS You can find complete descriptions of events, website links, and a list of storytimes, farmers’ markets and other weekly events at MontereyBayParent.com.

SUBMIT YOUR EVENT If your organization or business has an event you’d like to share with our readers, go to MontereyBayParent.com, click on “events,” and click on “submit your event.” It’s easy and it’s free.

The online calendar is updated frequently so be sure to check often to see new events!

1 saturday 9:00 AM. Heart String Art As you help your child piece together the symbol of Valentine’s Day, they will develop hands-on skills by sanding, nailing, painting and more. All Kids Workshop attendees must be accompanied by a parent or adult at all times. All kids get to keep their craft, receive a certificate of achievement, a workshop apron and a pin while supplies last The Home Depot 1590 Canyon Del Rey Seaside, www.homedepot.com 1890 North Davis Road, Salinas, www.homedepot.com


9:00 AM. 1st Saturday Book Sale Held every 1st Saturday from 10 am – 4 pm next to Starbucks. Buy used books, CDs and DVDs – almost everything is $1 – $3. Capitola Mall 1855 41st Avenue, Capitola, 95010 www.capitolalibraryfriends.org 9:00 AM. Young Eagles Rally Local pilots donate their time and planes to introduce kids to aviation and join the EAA Young Eagles Program. Free event. Please register online at www.eaa119.


org/youngeagles. Watsonville Municipal Airport 100 Aviation Way, Watsonville 9:00 AM. Parent University Join us for a free parenting conference, informative breakout sessions, and community resource fair. Free breakfast and lunch will be provided to all participants. Free childcare, for youth age 3-11 (must be potty trained), will be available on a first-come, first-serve registration basis. Seaside High School 2200 Noche Buena Street, Seaside, 93955 10:00 AM. Green Valley Christian School Open House Join us for an Open House at Green Valley Christian School. Explore our classrooms, meet our phenomenal staff, and see if GVCS is the right fit for your child. This event is open from 10 am - 12 pm, and you are welcome to drop in at any time and explore the school at your own pace. Students are welcome to join their parents. Green Valley Christian School 376 S Green Valley Rd, Watsonville gvcs.org 10:00 AM. First Saturday Book Sale The Friends Bookshop sidewalk sale is held on the front lawn of the John Steinbeck Library.  Rain postpones the sale until the sec-

ond Saturday of the month. John Steinbeck Library 350 Lincoln Avenue, Salinas, 93901 www.salinaspubliclibrary.org 10:00 AM. Family Playdate Activities and games are available for families. Seaside Branch Library 550 Harcourt, Seaside, 93955 thefriendsofseasidelibrary.org 10:00 AM. Secretive Scrub Jays Loud and proud, these fascinating birds also have a secret life known to few. Discover why they rob their neighbors, how they groom deer, where they hold a neighborhood watch, and other unusual behaviors. For ages 3-10. Locke-Paddon Park Del Monte Avenue & Reservation Road, Marina, www.mprpd.org 10:30 AM. Soccer Camp Monterey Condors Club is hosting the first annual youth soccer camp February 1st and 2nd with Jason Utley. David Cutino Park 1324 La Salle Ave, Seaside 831-594-2214 12:00 PM. Those Sneaky Animals We’ll investigate antics some animals perform to survive. Engage in fun, interactive games to gain insight into animal behaviors in the wild, while improving your na-


ture-viewing skills. Get down and sneaky with us. For ages 3-10. Locke-Paddon Park Del Monte Avenue & Reservation Road, Marina, www.mprpd.org 1:00 PM. Rainbow Families Craft and Play Day Please join us at our next Rainbow Families Craft and Play Day on Saturday, February 1st from 1:00 3:00 pm. Meet new friends, make cards and celebrate our families. The Diversity Center 102 Ocean View Avenue, Santa Cruz, www.diversitycenter.org 6:00 PM. Big Sur Fiddle Camp Benefit Concert Edwin Huizinga and his 7 Star performers and their students present a benefit concert for the Big Sur Fiddle Camp. Under 18, admission is free. Adults: $30 donation. Hidden Valley Music Seminars 104 West Carmel Valley Road, Carmel Valley hiddenvalleymusic.org

2 Sunday 9:00 AM. Sensory Sundays Open 2 hours early on the first Sunday of every month, specifically for children with autism and other special needs. Reduced lighting and noise, food and games offered, trained and caring staff. Chuck E. Cheese 1447 North Davis Road, Salinas 10:00 AM. Monthly Bagging Party On the first Sunday of every month we gather at the Vista Lobos Room in Carmel to bag rice and beans for distribution to those in need. 5th and Dolores, Carmel, www.riceplusproject.org 11:00 AM. Winter Habitat Tour Join us for MEarth’s Seasonal Public Tour of the beautiful, 10acre, Hilton Bialek Habitat, led by MEarth’s Executive Director, Benjamin Eichorn. After the tour, we welcome you to lend a hand in our organic gardens and native plant habitats. Light snacks will be provided. Children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult.  4380 Carmel Valley Road, Carmel, 93955, Sarah@MEarthCarmel.org 1:00 PM. Seaside Crafts Come create and take home a fun souvenir, an activity for the whole family to share. For example, find out what gray whales eat by creating a bright sun catcher for your window, or create a fancy fish with paper, paint, and color. Build

a seal or sea lion puppet decorated with your own special seal nose, complete with whiskers. Join the fun in the crafts room every Sunday from 1-3 PM for hands-on fun. Seymour Marine Discovery Center 100 McAllister Way, Santa Cruz https://seymourcenter.ucsc.edu/ learn/family-activities/sundayseaside-crafts/

3 Monday 10:00 AM. Preschool Yoga with Maryann Join Maryann of Kidding Around Yoga for a fun preschool yoga class. Afterward, we gather at the craft tables and socialize. Park Branch Library Mission & Sixth, Carmel, 93923 ci.carmel.ca.us/library 3:30 PM. Cooking with MEarth Make hands-on healthy and tasty snacks using fresh and seasonal fruits and veggies. Hosted by MEarth. Registration is required. For 3rd-5th grades. Monterey Public Library 625 Pacific Street, Monterey, 93940, montereypl.libcal.com

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4 Tuesday 10:00 AM. $2 Tuesdays at MY Museum $2 Tuesday is the first Tuesday of every month. Enjoy $2 admission per person for Monterey County residents with ID. As always, children under 24 months are free. MY Museum 425 Washington Street, Monterey, 93940, mymuseum.org 1:30 PM. Play-School Storytime Join us for an afternoon preschool storytime. It’s an hour-long program that includes stories, music, playtime, and activities. Children will be able to practice kindergarten readiness skills. Check ci.carmel.ca.us/library for additional information. Held weekly on Tuesday. Park Branch Library Mission & Sixth, Carmel, 93923 5:00 PM. Kids Night Out Need an evening without the kids? Use this opportunity to enjoy a well-deserved night off while your kids enjoy games, crafts and other exhilarating activities. Go out to see a movie, have dinner or go shopping while your children have a good time in a safe and fun environment. Dinner will be provided.  Casanova Oak Knoll Center 735 Ramona Avenue, Monterey, 93940, monterey.org 6:00 PM. Star Party



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Look up at the night sky and revel in the night sky’s vast mysteries. Come and join us as amateur astronomers share their knowledge of the cosmos. Observe details on the moon and faint objects such as galaxies and star clusters. Garland Ranch Park Visitor Center 700 West Carmel Valley Road, Carmel Valley, 93924 www.mprpd.org

3:30 PM. Drop-In Crafternoon Join us for an afternoon of crafts. The crafts stations are designed with varying age groups in mind, so children of all ages are welcome. It’s also held Feb. 12, 19, and 26. Pacific Grove Public Library (Temporary Location) 542, Lighthouse Avenue, Pacific Grove, 93950 www.pacificgrovelibrary.org 4:00 PM. Family Storytime Join us for short stories, songs, action rhymes, fingerplays, and fun. Cesar Chavez Library 615, Williams Road, Salinas, 93905 www.salinaspubliclibrary.org 4:00 PM. Build & Play Time Enjoy building and creative fun with Magnatiles, Keva Planks & building blocks. Other activities include working on puzzles or having fun with coloring pages. Coloring pages and coloring supplies are provided free of charge. All ages are welcome. Children under the age of 7 years must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, call 831-883-7507 or come by the Marina Library and speak to one of our friendly staff. Marina Branch Library 190 Seaside Circle, Marina, 93933 5:00 PM. Lego My Library Legos, games, and snacks. Pacific Grove Public Library (Temporary Location) 542 Lighthouse Avenue, Pacific Grove, 93950 www.pacificgrovelibrary.org 6:00 PM. Family Night Families can enjoy the many activities provided such as billiards, ping pong, and board games. Held weekly on Wednesday. Hilltop Center 871 Jessie Street, Monterey, 93940, www.monterey.org/rec 6:00 PM. Big Games for Kids Enjoy a fun evening with friends playing a collection of life-sized games. Play BIG Jenga, BIG Uno, BIG Connect Four or start a BIG tournament with friends. For ages

10-17 years, held weekly on Monday and Wednesdays. Free event. Casanova Oak Knoll Center 735 Ramona Avenue, Monterey, 93940, www.monterey.org/rec 7:00 PM. Community Night with the Library: Big Data/Big Brother Learn how, and to what extent your personal information is being divulged with Naval Postgraduate School Asst. Professor of Computer Science, Vinnie Monaco. Everything from search queries and movie ratings, to the way a person types on a keyboard or clicks on a button reflects some aspect of their identity. Held at Carpenter Hall at Sunset Center, 9th and Mission, Carmel.  Sunset Center San Carlos Street at 9th Avenue, Carmel, 93923, 831-624-2811

6 Thursday 3:30 PM. Teen Chef Food in the library? Well, only if you make it. Come in and learn a new recipe for snack. Make it, eat it and watch a movie while you enjoy. Food supplies are limited; first come, first serve. Middle School and High School students welcome. Monterey Public Library 625 Pacific Street, Monterey, 93940, montereypl.libcal.com

7 Friday 9:30 AM. Music & Movement Come shake your sillies at the Library Connection at Northridge. Music & Movement is a fun way to get moving with your little one. Held first and third Fridays from 9:30-10:00 a.m. 796 Northridge Mall, Salinas, 93906 www.salinaspubliclibrary.org 10:00 AM. Free First Friday Visit the Museum for free all day, but be sure to come back in the afternoon for crafts, music, and more. Santa Cruz Museum of Art 705 Front Street, Santa Cruz, 95060, santacruzmah.org 5:00 PM. Crafts + Game Building Workshops Stop by for free crafts and gamebuilding workshops each Friday evening from 5-7:30 pm. Check out the space near Carter’s| Osh Kosh b’Gosh. The workshops stay open until 9:00 pm for viewing of beautifully displayed murals and give visitors the opportunity to meet and talk with the artists.


796 Northridge Mall, Salinas, 9390 www.shop-northridge-mall.com 5:00 PM. First Friday: Fantastic Fungi Join us every first Friday of the month for free opportunities to engage with our local natural history. Enjoy free admission throughout the day, with special events 5-7 p.m. Santa Cruz Museum of Natural History, 1305 East Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz, 95062 www.santacruzmuseum.org 6:00 PM. Who Gives a Hoot? Silent and secretive, owls are one of the world’s most fascinating nocturnal predators. Be amazed as you observe three owl species during this exciting live demonstration. Learn the environmental impacts that affect our local owl populations and how you can make a difference in your own backyard.  Open to ages 13 and up. Palo Corona Discovery Center 4860 Carmel Valley Road, Carmel, 93923, www.mprpd.org

8 Saturday 10:00 AM. New Teen and Adult Orientation This orientation is for teens and adults interested in serving as kitchen support at our Watsonville or Soquel locations and for potential Delivery Angels to learn more about the program. Teens must be 13+ years of age to volunteer. The general orientation will last 30 minutes. After the initial 30 minute briefing, teen chefs will break out for training of knife skills, kitchen etiquette, and more. Teen Kitchen Project 2901 Research Park Drive, Soquel, www.TeenKitchenProject.org 10:00 AM. First Saturday Book Sale Books, puzzles, music, movies and more. Find us at our temporary location during the Library Renewal. All proceeds benefit the Library’s community of readers and learners. St. Mary’s Episcopal Church 146 12th Street, Pacific Grove, officemanager@ stmarysbythesea.org 10:00 AM. Second Weekends at Watsonville Airport Admission is free and everyone is welcome to show and admire these historical aircraft.  Watsonville Municipal Airport 100 Aviation Way, Watsonville, 95076, www.cityofwatsonville.org

10:00 AM. Carr Lake Planting Event Volunteers are invited to join us as we create a park at Carr Lake in Salinas. A great family activity that is free. Tools, water, and snacks provided. Earn community service hours and mingle with like-minded servers. Upper Carr Lake Park E. Laurel Drive, Salinas, 93906 https://csumb.edu/ron 10:00 AM. Those Nutty Squirrels What are those silly squirrels doing when they scamper about, chase each other, and “fly” from tree to tree? Learn why squirrels flick their tails, when they nest, and how they protect themselves. Understand the nutty antics of these energetic, acrobatic critters through projects, games and interactive activities. For ages 3-10. Palo Corona Discovery Center 4860 Carmel Valley Road, Carmel, 93923, www.mprpd.org 10:00 AM. Toddler Time Dance at MY Museum Do you have a little one who is interested in dance? Join us at MYM for a half-hour of fun as we partner with The Dance Center. Toddlers will learn about the basics of dance in this fun and engaging program. MY Museum 425 Washington Street, Monterey, 93940, www.mymuseum.org 11:00 AM. Downtown Salinas Chocolate Walk Get your passport for a family-friendly sweet stroll through Downtown Salinas on Saturday February 8 and support Special Kids Connect. Over twenty businesses will be handing out chocolate-inspired treats to an anticipated 200 chocolate walkers during this 4-hour event. Visitors will receive a passport with a map of participating business locations and a treat bag to carry extra goodies home. Passports can be purchased in advance for $15 or on the day of the event for $20. Oldtown Salinas, 93901 www.salinaschocolatewalk.com 11:00 AM. Migration Festival The event features live animals, taco truck, crafts, nature walks, live music from local artists, special guest speakers, and 20+ nature organizations from around the Monterey Bay. Admission is free, carpooling is encouraged, $10 parking fee within park boundaries. Natural Bridges State Park



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Building Confidence, Self-Esteem, and Champions Since 1993! montereybayparent.com


2531 West Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz, 95060, www.ThatsMyPark.org

871 Jessie Street, Monterey, 93940 monterey.org

11:30 AM. Critter Capers Ever wonder what it’s like to be a critter: Burrow underground, slither through the grass, fly across the sky? Get to know the secret world of animals through the power of play. Some games will be very active, others less so, but all are fun. For ages 3-10. Garland Ranch Park Visitor Center 700, West Carmel Valley Road, Carmel Valley, 93924, www.mprpd.org

9 Sunday

1:30 PM. Crafternoon with Miss Jen Join Miss Jen for a drop-in craft. Fun for the whole family. Make a Valentine’s card for someone special.  Park Branch Library Mission & Sixth, Carmel, 93923 ci.carmel.ca.us/library 5:00 PM. Kids Night Out: Valentine’s Edition Parents take this chance to enjoy an early Valentine’s Day night out while we watch your children. Your heart can rest easy knowing that your children are enjoying special Valentine themed crafts, activities, games and even baking a tasty treat. Dinner will be provided.  Open to ages 3-12. Hilltop Center

9:00 AM. Java with a Lifeguard Join California State Park Lifeguards for some coffee and learn about the seasonal waves known as “King Tides”. Lifeguards will be speaking about ocean safety and showing some of the equipment they use in their job. Asilomar Conference Center 800 Asilomar Avenue, Pacific Grove, 93950, www.parks.ca.gov 11:00 AM. Seacliff History Tour Meet in the Visitor Center for a walking tour of Seacliff State Beach and its fascinating history.This hour-long stroll will take you to the Aptos Creek Bridge and back, a total distance of about one mile. Sea Cliff State Beach 201 State Park Drive, Aptos, 95003 www.ThatsMyPark.org 9:00 PM. Full Moon Walk Come join us for quiet exploration of this beloved park under the moonlight. This evening has two options for adventure. The first is a one-hour guided hike on our low-


er trails where you can search for critters and meander through the forest. The second option is a two hour guided hike that will bring you to the Sunset Trail overlook, our highest point and largest vista in the park. Free. Ages 16 and below must be accompanied by an adult. We will meet at the Ranch house and split into 2 groups before heading out. Quail Hollow Ranch 800, Quail Hollow Road, Felton www.scparks.com

10 Monday 10:00 AM. Preschool Storytime Join Miss Grace for Preschool storytime. Hear short stories, rhymes, and do fun activities. Afterward, we gather at the craft tables and socialize. Also held on February 24. Park Branch Library Mission & Sixth, Carmel, 93923 ci.carmel.ca.us/library 3:30 PM. Crafts for Kids: Valentine Making Make a valentine for someone you love in this free craft led by Monterey Recreation in the Monterey Public Library’s Community Room. Best for K-5th Graders. Registration required. Monterey Public Library

625 Pacific Street, Monterey, 93940 831-646-3933 6:00 PM. Foster Care and Adoption Informational Meeting Foster care and adoption informational meetings occur on the second Monday of every month from 6-8 pm at Kinship Center in Salinas. No RSVP needed. Kinship Center 124 River Road, Salinas, 93908 831-455-4740 barbara_may@senecacenter.org 6:30 PM. Wired for Reward A panel of experts will gather at Carmel High School for a discussion to help parents navigate issues regarding addiction and strategies they can employ to promote health. Carmel High School 3600 Ocean Avenue, Carmel, 93921, ci.carmel.ca.us

11 Tuesday 1:30 PM. Play-School Storytime Join us for an afternoon preschool storytime. It’s an hour-long program that includes stories, music, playtime, and activities. Children will be able to practice kindergarten readiness skills. Held weekly

Pacific Grove Preschool & Childcare • Co-op Preschool • Free Daycare • Dual Language Spanish Co-Op Preschool • Child Care/Extended Day Preschool • Family engagement programs for student success birth to 12th grade 1025 Lighthouse Ave., Pacific Grove, CA 93950

831-646-6623 pgadulted.com 28



on Tuesday. Park Branch Library Mission & Sixth, Carmel, 93923 ci.carmel.ca.us/library

12 wednesday 12:00 PM. Music with Mary Lee Music for all ages. Pacific Grove Public Library (Temporary Location) 542 Lighthouse Avenue, Pacific Grove, 93950 www.pacificgrovelibrary.org 7:00 PM. Harlem Globetrotters at Hartnell College Don’t miss the one and only Harlem Globetrotters in an all-new tour. There will be new high-flying dunks, hilarious stunts, a new record-breaking attempt and unforgettable family moments. Hartnell College 411 Central Avenue, Salinas, 93901 www.harlemglobetrotters.com

13 Thursday 4:30 PM. Studio Art for Kids Develop your artistic skill as we create original art with a variety of media such as paint, charcoal, pencils, pastels, ink, and clay. Explore art techniques and learn about artists and art history. All materials are provided. Open to ages 7-12. Casanova Oak Knoll Center 735 Ramona Avenue, Monterey, 93940, monterey.org 4:30 PM. Pet First Aid Rattlesnakes, bees, dogs, and wildlife can endanger your pet in the great outdoors. This informative program will teach you basic first aid and important safety tips when every minute counts. Gain the confidence to act decisively during emergency situations. Open to ages 13 and up. Palo Corona Discovery Center 4860 Carmel Valley Road, Carmel, 93923, www.mprpd.org

14 Friday 6:00 PM. Kids Nerf Night Come do some target shooting, play tag, elimination, Capture the Flag and other great games with your NERF Blaster. Dinner and dessert are included. Open to ages 7-12. Casanova Oak Knoll Center 735 Ramona Avenue, Monterey, 93940, monterey.org

15 Saturday 9:30 AM. San Jose Creek to

the Discovery Center Travel the backcountry trails of Palo Corona Regional Park to our first stop, Animas Pond. Next, we’ll hike to Inspiration Point to eat lunch and drink in the spectacular views. Open to ages 12 and up. Palo Corona Barn Highway 1, Carmel, 93923 www.mprpd.org 10:00 AM. Mushroom Mania Set out for a morning of exploration in search of the elusive fungi of Garland Ranch Regional Park. Join a local expert as he deciphers these mysterious life forms. Learn how to detect which mushrooms are friend or foe on this informative hike in the woods.  Open to ages 13 and up. Garland Ranch Park Visitor Center 700 West Carmel Valley Road, Carmel Valley, 93924 www.mprpd.org 10:00 AM. seaside library 90th birthday All-day celebration with entertainment and special guests. 550 Harcourt Ave, Seaside, 93955 831-899-2055 10:00 AM. Twilight Hike Through the Park An all-day celebration of Seaside Library’s 90 years. Performances by Save the Whales, Spector Dance, Juan Sanchez, and more. Seaside Branch Library 550 Harcourt Avenue Seaside, 93955 seasidelibrary90th.eventbrite.com 11:30 AM. Romance in the Redwoods On this easy 2 hour walk, you will learn about the courtship behaviors of some of the park’s most fascinating plants and animals. Join us and discover how banana slugs, redwood trees and more celebrate love in the wild. Meet at Big Basin Redwoods State Park Headquarters. Free event. Day-use parking $10. The Old Lodge 21600, Big Basin Way, Boulder Creek, 95006, www.parks.ca.gov

Participant of:

Supporting young musicians from 20 schools in Monterey County, taught by 8 professional music teachers, directed by James Paoletti, Artistic Director.

To support us, please visit: OrchestraInTheSchools.org Or donate through MCGives! Thank you for your donations.

*Home School Program – Grades TK-12 *Independent Study Program – Grades 9-12 *Fully Accredited by WASC! *No Interdistrict Transfer Required to Enroll! At Monterey County Home Charter School, students are given a rich, individually designed, tuition-free education while studying in a nonclassroom-based environment. Enrichment and intervention classes, workshops, field trips, tutoring sessions, concurrent enrollment and ROP opportunities, and weekly meetings with fully credentialed teachers give students every opportunity to succeed.

12:00 PM. Third Saturday Storytime Following storytime, children will take part in a craft activity led by our staff. National Steinbeck Center 1 Main Street, Salinas, 93901 www.steinbeck.org 2:00 PM. Return of the Condor Once on the brink of extinction, California condors are now on the road to recovery. The Ventana Wildlife Society’s (VWS) successful


For more information or to enroll, contact: Monterey County Home Charter School 901 Blanco Circle, Salinas, CA 93912

(831) 755-0331 • www.mchcs.org montereybayparent.com


captive-breeding program has restored a wild population along the Central Coast. Hear from an expert in the field what it is like to work with the largest bird in North America.   Palo Corona Discovery Center 4860 Carmel Valley Road, Carmel, 93923, www.mprpd.org 6:30 PM. Women’s Night Out This Valentine’s Weekend, join the Monterey Symphony at the Sunset Center in Carmel for a night of golden indulgence with new and old friends. Indulge in decadent desserts from Parker-Lusseau Pastries and Cafe Lumiere and delicious small bites from 5th Avenue Deli & Catering Co. Sip local libations by Chalone Vineyard Mesa Del Sol Estate Retreat & Winery and Carmel Berry Company while you vibe into music by Dave Holodiloff and Elijjah McCullar. Check for additional information. Monterey Symphony Sunset Center, Carmel www.montereysymphony.org

19 Wednesday 7:00 PM. Harlem Globetrotters This is more than a basketball game. It is more than a show. It is the one and only Harlem Globetrotters in an all-new, larger-than-


life world tour. You’ll be on your feet, out of your seat, laughing until it hurts and loving every moment. Kaiser Permanente Arena 140 Front Street, Santa Cruz www.harlemglobetrotters.com

21 Friday 6:00 PM. Free Movie Night: Mary Poppins Bring the whole family out for the evening to enjoy a free screening of Mary Poppins Returns as well as free popcorn and candy. The movie will be screened inside the Jade Street Park Community Center. Space is limited to 200 people, so arrive early.  This is a bring your own seating event … blankets, pillows and low back chairs only. Capitola Community Center 4400 Jade Street, Capitola, 95010 www.cityofcapitola.org

22 Saturday 9:00 AM. Teacher Recruitment Fair Hosted by the Monterey County Office of Education, the annual Teacher Recruitment Fair gives candidates the opportunity to meet with many different schools’ representatives to discuss employment opportunities, with several offering on-the-spot interviews.

Hartnell College 411 Central Avenue, Salinas, 93901 www.montereycoe.org 9:00 AM. Mushroom Appreciation Hike Join amateur mushroom enthusiasts on this informative hike, learning tips and techniques to identify the various fungi inhabiting the Monterey Peninsula. Neither animal, vegetable or mineral, discover fun facts about these mighty decomposers. Ft. Ord National Monument Reservation Road, Marina, 93933 www.mprpd.org 10:00 AM. Clam Chowder Cookoff Taste the best at the 39th Annual Clam Chowder Cook-Off. Sample chowder from Amateur Chefs on Saturday, followed by Professional Chefs on Sunday. Both days feature Boston and Manhattan Clam Chowder, and you can help pick a winner each day. Rain or Shine. Tasting kit proceeds benefit Santa Cruz Parks & Recreation. Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk 400 Beach Street, Santa Cruz, 95060, beachboardwalk.com 10:00 AM. SPCA Pets and Animals Family Workshop Learn about the animals in our lives. Seaside Branch Library

550 Harcourt, Seaside, 93955 thefriendsofseasidelibrary.org 1:15 PM. Wedding Fair 2020 What a better way to spend your happily ever after than on the beach. Please join us for this special opportunity for couples to come and tour our gorgeous property. We will offer light hors d’oeuvres, a tour of the grounds, and meet with potential vendors for your wedding day. Asilomar Conference Center 800 Asilomar Avenue, Pacific Grove, 93950 www.visitasilomar.com

25 Tuesday 10:00 AM. Community Free Day Experience Seymour Marine Discovery Center’s fascinating marine-life exhibits for free on Community Days throughout the year. Seymour Marine Discovery Center 100 McAllister Way, Santa Cruz, 95060, seymourcenter.ucsc.edu 4:00 PM. 3D Printing Workshop Middle and High School students come learn how to use CAD software to create an object, then print it on our 3D printer. Beginners welcome, repeat students can get creative with our assistance. Free, grades 5-12, class size



Monterey Bay Parent Magazine Feb., March, April, May 2020

limited. Register below. Come back the last Tuesday of each month for more projects. Questions? Contact the Library Help Desk, refdesk@monterey.org, or (831) 646-3933 Monterey Public Library 625 Pacific Street, Monterey, 93940

26 Wednesday 10:00 AM. Musical Storytime Marylee will be here with her guitar for a fun musical storytime. Afterward, we gather at the craft tables and socialize. Park Branch Library Mission & Sixth, Carmel, 93923 ci.carmel.ca.us

28 Friday 6:00 PM. Star Gazing Come to Quail Hollow Ranch County Park where gazing up at the night skies, you’ll travel through space to see images like the earth’s moon and all its craters and mountains, Jupiter and its moons, and the rings of Saturn. Bring your own telescope or just stop by and look through member’s telescopes. Dress warmly. Rain or cloudy skies cancels the program. The program starts a half-hour-after sunset. All ages

welcome. Free. Quail Hollow Ranch 800 Quail Hollow Road, Felton www.scparks.com

29 Saturday 8:30 AM. Laguna Grande Birding Walk This birding refuge offers something new with each visit. Join birders of all skill levels to view waterfowl, raptors, and seasonal migrants. From lakeside to wetlands to riparian, Laguna Grande Park has many rich habitats that attract a wide variety of birds. Open to ages 12 and up. Laguna Grande Park Canyon Del Rey Blvd., Seaside, 93955, www.mprpd.org 9:00 AM. Cleanup at Carmel River State Beach Meet us at the parking lot off Scenic Drive. We recommend that all volunteers dress in layers, wear sun protection, and bring a filled reusable water bottle. Volunteers under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Closedtoed shoes are required at all Save Our Shores cleanups. No RSVPs are necessary, but you can print and complete our waiver beforehand to save time: saveourshores. org/waiver/. Be sure to bring your signed copy (1 per volunteer) to


the event. If you have additional questions, please contact alejandro@saveourshores.org. Carmel River State Beach Carmelo Street, Carmel 10:00 AM. Science Saturday: Animal Athletes Join us for crafts, activities, and science as we sprint, jump, and dive into the world of Animal Athletes. As always, admission to Science Saturday is free. Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History 165 Forest Avenue, Pacific Grove, 93950, www.pgmuseum.org 12:00 PM. Community Youth Science Event Come for a fun afternoon of STEM activities at your library. 4-H youth will lead hands-on STEM activities that introduce science, engineering, and chemistry in a fun and exciting way. Community youth, ages 8 and up, are encouraged to attend. Activities are presented by the Buena Vista 4-H STEM Team. Space and materials are limited, RSVP’s are strongly encouraged. Please RSVP at Buenavista4h@ gmail.com by February 23 or sign up at the reference desk of the Cesar Chavez Library. Cesar Chavez Library 615 Williams Road, Salinas, 93905

1:00 PM. Mindful Meditation in the Park Engage your senses as you come into contact with the natural world. Release the stress of everyday life with mindful walking, movement, guided sitting meditation, and informal discussion. As the weather changes, so with each session’s focus. Held in the Palo Corona Barn. Participants are asked to register. Palo Corona Discovery Center 4860 Carmel Valley Road, Carmel, 93923, 831-233-1411 1:30 PM. Steam Saturday with Miss Myah Join Miss Myah, the science teacher from River School, for fun science activities. For ages 5 through 9 years old. All materials are supplied by the library. Park Branch Library Mission & Sixth, Carmel, 93923 ci.carmel.ca.us 5:00 PM. Twilight Hike Through the Park Uncover hidden treasures on this sunset to twilight hike. Experience a variety of habitats that are home to a surprisingly wide range of wildlife. Discover unexpected species as day transitions to dusk then night. Learn how animals adapt to an ever-changing environment. Open to ages 12 and up. Palo Corona Barn



Chartwell School: Empowering students who think and learn differently. Open House February 4 March 3 10:30 AM “Chartwell literally saved our son’s life.”

Stop struggling. Start learning.

Parent of Chartwell Graduate

For students in grades 2 to 12 with dyslexia and other learning differences. Chartwell School | 2511 Numa Watson Rd. | Seaside, CA 93955 www.chartwell.org | 831.394.3468 32



Profile for Monterey Bay Parent Magazine

Monterey Bay Parent Magazine February 2020  

A regional parenting publication for Monterey and Santa Cruz, CA Counties.

Monterey Bay Parent Magazine February 2020  

A regional parenting publication for Monterey and Santa Cruz, CA Counties.