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mendo lake FREE!

November 2016

Raise a Giver Teach kindness

Online Sharing

Choose wisely

Fall Fun 49 local ideas College Apps Savvy advice


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Ukiah Adventist Heart Institute Cardiology 115 Hospital Drive Ukiah, CA 95482 707.463.2400

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Womens Health 1050 N. State Street Ukiah, CA 95482 707.462.2945

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General, Bariatric, Plastic and Reconstructive Cosmetic Surgery 246 Hospital Drive Ukiah, CA 95482 707.463.8011 Ear, Nose, and Throat 1165 S. Dora St., Ste. C-2 Ukiah, CA 95482 707.462.8855 Ophthalmology and Optometry 1165 S. Dora St, Ste. B-1 Ukiah, CA 95482 707.467.5218 Ophthalmology 248-B Hospital Drive Ukiah, CA 95482 707.467.5250

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November 2016

Every Issue

9 Features 10 The Season’s Best Find the perfect presents.

12 Raise a Giver Teach kids to act from the heart.

14 The Dangers of Online Sharing

6

Dear Reader

8

Bits and Pieces Fashion Forward Take Me to Neverland Singing Instruments Fall Is for Fungi Dr. Pooch Is In Frills and Coat Tails Gather Round the Tree

20 Calendar of Events Run Among the Vines

28 Humor Break The Well Visit

30 Cooking with Kids Love a Latte

How to post with prudence.

16 College Wise Savvy strategies for applying to schools.

17 A Mom Sick Day How to get rest and take care of the kids.

12

18 Le Petit Chef Hold your own Chopped Junior contest.

10 4 MendoLakeFamilyLife

November 2016 www.mendolakefamilylife.com

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Dear Reader

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hat are you thankful for? It’s something everyone contemplates this time of year. We at Mendo Lake Sharon Gowan Publisher/Editor Family Life are Sharon@family-life.us definitely grateful to our readers for making us the number one parenting magazine in the area. As you prepare for feasting with out-of-town relatives, the articles in this issue aim to help everything go smoothly. Worried about how kids will behave around family? Experts say don’t sweat it. The most important thing is to connect with those you love. Try getting everyone involved in cooking up a treat like the

pumpkin-spice drink in “Love a Latte” (page 30), or take the crew out to one of the many fun, local goings-on featured in our Calendar of Events (page 20).

Office Manager Patricia Ramos patty@family-life.us

While you’re sharing quality time with family, it might be tempting to tweet or Facebook silly or even embarrassing anecdotes. But, counsels Kathryn Streeter in “The Dangers of Online Sharing” (page 14), it may be better to wait and just post what’s positive. However you choose to celebrate Thanksgiving, we hope it’s full of sweet smiles and treasured memories.

Business Marketing Renee Nutcher renee@family-life.us Marie Anderson marie@family-life.us

Features Editor Melissa Chianta melissa@family-life.us

Production Manager Donna Bogener production@family-life.us

Web and Social Media Jean Flint jean@family-life.us

Contributing Writers Carol J. Alexander Greg Kaplan Julie Kertes Janeen Lewis Sarah Lyons Cheryl Maguire Kathryn Streeter Kris Thomason

Billing Jan Wasson-Smith

Publishing Office 134 Lystra Court, Suite A Santa Rosa, CA 95403

Family health care for all of Lake County.

sutterlakeside.org

6 MendoLakeFamilyLife

Tel (707) 586-9562 Fax (707) 586-9571

HOSPITAL SERVICES 707-262-5000 COMMUNITY CLINIC 707-263-6885 FAMILY MEDICINE CLINIC 707-262-5088

November 2016 www.mendolakefamilylife.com


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January 2016

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Twin Talk Advice on multiples

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School Guide

A+ Education

How to choose a school

Dream Center

Help for homeless kids

Learning Styles What’s yours?

Go Local! Get great

Valley Fire Tale A silver lining

gift ideas

Interfaith Families

Green X-mas

A holiday how-to

10 Eco-friendly tips

Start-up Stars Help locals

Learn at Home

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12 Great Gifts

5 steps to gratitude

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Care for Nourish yourself

Art + Science A fun project

7 local spooky spots

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Reach for It! Set & meet

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Dating Danger

Girl Power Keep ‘em strong

Birthday Bash Make it special

Music Matters

Local programs thrive

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6 top spots

Happy 4 Ways to care

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Kids & Cupid


Bits & Pieces

Fashion Forward

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ho says looking sharp has to be expensive? At the ReRunway Fashion Show recycled threads are all the rage—but not just for the sake of looking good. The show aims to raise money for breast cancer services at Sutter Lakeside Hospital. Check it out on November 4, 4:30–8:30 p.m., at the Boatique Winery in Kelseyville. Cocktails will be served at 4:30 p.m.; show begins at 5:30 p.m. Tickets are $30. ¶

Take Me to Neverland

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fter a long day of making protested meals (Mom, I hate broccoli!) and nursing toes stubbed on Legos, most parents wish they could be whisked off to a land far, far away. Tinkerbell, Wendy, and their band of Lost Boys have just the place: Neverland. Get a taste of what it’s like to fly around without a responsibility in sight at Peter Pan. The Ukiah Players Theatre in Ukiah will perform the show on November 17, 18, 25, and 26 at 7 p.m., and November 20 and 27 at 2 p.m. (Performances will continue through December 18.) Tickets are $10–$20 and may be purchased at ukiahplayerstheatre.org. ¶

Singing Instruments

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Fall Is for Fungi

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Jeremy Beau

he sounds of mellifluous violins, thunderous drums, and piercing trumpets will usher in the holiday season at the Lake County Symphony Fall Concert. Hear classical favorites on November 20 at 3 p.m. at the Soper Reese Community Theatre in Lakeport. Admission is $20­–$30; an 11 a.m. open rehearsal is $5 or free for kids under age 18. See sopereesetheatre.org for more information or to buy tickets. ¶

ive hundred varieties of edible mushrooms are busy growing throughout Mendocino County, and some of them are on the grounds of Saracina Vineyards in Hopland. Look for them yourself at the vineyard’s Mushroom Foraging and Gourmet Luncheon. In addition to ’shroom hunting, there will be a discussion of the evolution of the mushroom industry as well as a four-course mushroom-inspired meal and, of course, wine. The event will be held on November 12, 10:30 a.m.–2:30 p.m. Tickets are $95 and may be purchased at saracina.com. ¶

November 2016 www.mendolakefamilylife.com


Dr. Pooch Is In

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lot of animal lovers find their happy place cuddling with their canines. This is especially true when a pet owner is sick. Enter the new Ukiah Valley Medical Center Therapy Dog Program, which brings dogs to the sides of patients in need of a little TLC. Pharmacist Paulette Dancause-Paulsen worked with the hospital’s Infection Prevention Department to launch the Ukiah program. Doctors or nurses can request that a patient receive a visit from a certified therapy dog team, or patients can go to weekly visits in the hospital conference room. Volunteers help dog handlers by providing hand sanitizer and recording patients’ reactions and comments. If you are interested in volunteering, contact Felicia Eriksen at 463-7690 or felicia.eriksen@ah.org. ¶

Gather Round the Tree

T Frills and Coat Tails

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hat’s better for a crafty vintage lover than perusing locally made objets d’art? Doing it in a petticoat or a top hat (or both, why not?). You’ll get your chance on November 26, 11 a.m.–6 p.m., on Main Street in Lakeport at the Dickens Faire, where period costumes are encouraged. After you’re done shopping, get your photo taken with Santa. Then stick around for the Christmas tree lighting, which follows the faire. See lakeportmainstreet.com for details. ¶ www.mendolakefamilylife.com

November 2016

ired of running around? Wish that Christmas tree would just decorate itself? The Gualala Arts Center in Gualala will be happy to grant your request. At its Festival of Trees, you can buy an evergreen spiffed up in holiday regalia and ready for your living room. You can also pick up homemade pies, cakes, and cookies as well as gifts handcrafted by local artisans. There will be children’s activities, and Mr. and Mrs. Claus will be around to hear kids’ wishes. The free event will be held on November 25, 10 a.m.–5 p.m., and November 26, 10 a.m.–4 p.m. See gualalaarts.org for more information. ¶

MendoLakeFamilyLife 9


See more of this year’s winners at nappaawards.com.

The

Season’s

Best

Lion Guard Training Lair Just Play, $59.99, justplayproducts.com, ages 3+.

Your Guide to Holiday Shopping By Julie Kertes

’Tis the season for shopping, but don’t let the pressure of finding that perfect gift take the “happy” out of your holidays. Before you hit the mall—or Internet— take a look at the fantastic finds below, all of which were recognized and awarded by the National Parenting Product Awards (NAPPA). For the past 26 years, NAPPA has been the go-to source for parents looking for quality, entertaining, and educational products for their families. NAPPA’s team of expert judges and parent and kid testers meticulously evaluate hundreds of submissions each year and award only the best of the best with the coveted NAPPA seal.

10 MendoLakeFamilyLife

November 2016 www.mendolakefamilylife.com


Toys & Games

Arckit Go Colours Arckit, $59.99, arckit.com, 10+.

Monarch Life Cycle Puppet

Crayola Air Marker Sprayer

Folkmanis, $39.99, folkmanis.com, 3+.

Crayola, $29.99, crayola.com, 8+.

Fin Fun Mermaidens Fin Fun, $44.95. Monofin insert: Jr: $60, Pro: $65, finfun.com, 5+.

Furby Connect Hasbro, Inc., $99.99, hasbro.com, 6+.

CHiP WowWee, $199.99, wowwee.com, 8+.

Lamaze Mix & Match Caterpillar TOMY, $19.99, lamazetoys.com, 6+.

Hannah the Hanukkah Hero

Mighty Makers Director’s Cut Building Set

Mensch on a Bench, $29.99, themenschonabench.com, 3+.

K’NEX Brands, $34.99, knex.com, 7+.

www.mendolakefamilylife.com

November 2016

MendoLakeFamilyLife 11


Raise a Giver

Since children often connect with helping animals, consider a charity walk that benefits pet rescue or animal adoption. Another idea would be to participate in Heifer International’s Read to Feed, a program in which an individual child or a group of children find financial sponsors and then read a designated amount. The money they earn goes to Heifer International to provide education, tools, and livestock to feed millions of families around the globe (learn more at heifer.org).

7 Ways to Foster a Spirit of Generosity

By Janeen Lewis

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s most parents do, I often think about my children and wonder what kind of adults they will be when they grow up. I hope they will become altruistic individuals, giving more than they take from the world. But my children are constantly bombarded by messages from billboard ads, celebrity figures, and TV commercials that scream the opposite—that pursuing one’s own luxury and comfort leads to happiness. How do parents tune out the mantra of “gimme” and replace it with a spirit of generosity? This may not be as daunting as it seems. Try these simple steps to put your child on the path to philanthropy. Model a life of giving. “Children are watching all the time, and you need to ‘walk the walk,’” says Ellen Sabin, author of The Giving Book: Open the Door to a Lifetime of Giving (Watering Can, 2004). “There are dozens of things that you can do every day to demonstrate giving. When kids see parents doing those things, they want to do them, too.” 12 MendoLakeFamilyLife

Sabin wrote the book about giving as a gift for her six-year-old niece, Leah. “It was a recipe for a happy life,” Sabin says. “I was hoping to show her she was powerful and could change the world around her and that it feels good to do that.” Annually adopt a charity. Sabin suggests that family members choose a charity together to support each year. “Join an annual walk for autism, cancer, or any other charitable cause,” Sabin says. “When you are at the dinner table talking, decide how you want to spend your philanthropic dollars together.”

Donate your time. While it is important to donate money whenever we can, it is also important to give

Children pick up on our subtle clues about what is important; what they see will affect how they invest their time as they grow into adults. time out of our busy schedules to help others. Take your children with you when you volunteer at a local homeless shelter, food drive, animal shelter, or school fundraiser, and deviate from your own schedule to do something special with your child sometimes. Children pick up on our subtle clues about what is important; what they see will affect how they invest their time as they grow into adults. Take care of the environment. One simple way to teach children to give is to teach them to be kind to the earth. Start a recycling program

November 2016 www.mendolakefamilylife.com


at your child’s school or pick up trash together. Grow a garden in your backyard or volunteer to work in a community garden. Donate some of the produce you harvest to a local soup kitchen. You will help others in need and reduce your carbon footprint at the same time. Recently my own children and I volunteered during an annual waterway cleanup near our

I realized that if I really wanted my children to have giving spirits, I needed to give year-round and enlist their help. community. When we cleared a creek of litter with other helpers, it made an impression on my son, Andrew, 8, who felt a sense of accomplishment when he realized he was helping keep a habitat clean for creek life. Now he wants to adopt a stream to help monitor the quality of waterways in our community. Keep it simple. I often feel overwhelmed when I consider all of the people and organizations that need help. But teaching children to help others includes more than donating time and money. Let someone in front of you at the grocery checkout line, or let other drivers go first in a crowded parking lot. Smile and say “please” and “thank you” to restaurant servers, store clerks, mail carriers, and trash collectors. I tell my children how much those particular employees improve our lives. Always look for opportunities to model kindness and compassion, and children will do the same. www.mendolakefamilylife.com

Make giving part of everyday life. The Wright family makes it a point to practice Random Acts of Kindness throughout the year. One day Brandi Wright and her daughter Vivian, 9, placed quarters in the rental slots of grocery carts for other shoppers. Vivian and her father, Anthony, gave out helium balloons to strangers in front of Wal-Mart just to brighten their day. “One woman gave Vivian a donation to help pay for the cost of the balloons,” Wright said. “Vivian and her dad bought more balloons and gave more away.” Sarah Crupi, a mother of five, teaches her children to be considerate when they visit others by including younger children in play, helping the host, and picking up after

While it is important to donate money whenever we can, it is also important to give time out of our busy schedules to help others.

needed to give year-round and enlist their help. Now my children and I routinely pick out some nonperishable food at the grocery store and put it in the cart. Then we take it to a church that has a food pantry. Every season we go through outgrown clothes and toys, and they help choose what to give away. We talk about who might be a good recipient for the items and where we should take them. I want my children to understand that giving to others is a way of life, not just something we do once a year. Every day there are opportunities in the world around us to give. Choose one of them, and start down the road of lifelong giving with your child today. ¶ Janeen Lewis is a freelance journalist and mom of two who has a heart for feeding the hungry and helping clean up litter in her community. She has been published in Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Multitasking Mom’s Survival Guide (Chicken Soup for the Soul, 2014), and GreenPrints: The Weeder’s Digest.

themselves. “I’ve heard several moms specifically request my children to attend an event because they know that they can count on them to contribute and be helpful. That is super rewarding to me as a mother!” Give all year. Last year during the holidays, I did my annual sweep, looking for cans of food that had sat in the pantry for months and clothes that were ready to go to Goodwill. As I did this, it occurred to me that I was treating giving like an end-of-the-year afterthought. I realized that if I really wanted my children to have giving spirits, I November 2016

MendoLakeFamilyLife 13


The Dangers of Online Sharing

of offering my friends and followers a trite personal anecdote that makes them laugh or roll their eyes with me, I’m now able to hand them a meatier post with a coherent message.

Are You Hurting Your Family?

I once decided to write a post on potty-training my son. My first attempts amounted to yet another tale of a frustrated parent. Perhaps it was funny, but it wasn’t original. As time passed, I realized the main take-away from this time in life centered on my insecurities and pride, not my son’s poor aim. Sharing a personal experience before I come to terms with what I’ve learned will

By Tracy Borgmeyer

By Kathryn Streeter

A

s social media mavens, we want to be remembered. Often apt personal anecdotes are the best way to connect with our followers or Facebook friends and drive a post’s popularity. But when it comes to sharing about our significant other and children, the line of decency can often feel blurry.

The question is weighty, worth the internal wrestling. My personal habits concerning sharing family-related content focus on timing. I allow time to pass before I 14 MendoLakeFamilyLife

post about an experience that directly involves either my husband or children. Looking back on an experience affords many advantages. Waiting to share publicly helps me to more completely understand and process what happened in the first place. When I have a family-related post idea, I’ll write a rough draft, revisiting it as my thoughts mature and clarify. Mulling is a very good thing; at the very least, it keeps me honest about my culpability in a personal family anecdote I’m considering sharing. For starters, what is my motivation for sharing? Waiting to release personal content enables me to discover the real message of an experience. As time passes, I’m better able to uncover the deeper meaning of a family situation or event I’d like to write about. Instead

Today my teenagers— and their friends—have access to anything I’ve ever written about them. Had I shared carelessly, there would be no taking things back. rob me of the chance to craft the best possible post, one which will offer lasting impact. For me, emotional settling needs to happen so that I can write from a grounded posture. When I’m simmering with emotion from an argument with my kids or husband, it’s not the optimal time to write. When I’m hurt or angry, my word choices and phrases are more likely to be uncreative and cheap, resembling a vanity project. I’m the center of attention, desiring empathy or applause. Because I’m

November 2016 www.mendolakefamilylife.com


STS For Less Stress, Fly

still smarting, I have zero perspective. But if given time, a flippant post can morph into a deeply felt story. Time yields a better product.

I love best. Everything online is forever available to my husband and kids. Even when my kids were young and unplugged, I didn’t write about their maniacal moments, not only because of appreciating what I’ve already mentioned—that the passage of time allows for a truer story—but because I didn’t want to unintentionally cause future shame. Today my teenagers—and their friends—have access to anything I’ve ever written about them. Had I shared carelessly, there would be no taking things back. Apologies would ring false; relational damage would be tough to repair. Today as ever, writing about humiliating experiences for a cheap laugh is at odds with everything I’m trying to do as a parent. From tot to teen, my kids have always deserved to be treated like I’d like to be treated: with respect. Building a strong relationship with my husband and kids is like a major construction project—the effort and time is immense. I am unwilling www.mendolakefamilylife.com

Charles M. Schulz Sonoma County Airport Seattle (SEA)

Portland (PDX) TS

Writing about humiliating experiences for a cheap laugh is at odds with everything I’m trying to do as a parent.

Finally, my family knows that before I post anything that mentions them, I’ll have them review it. If my writing involves my husband, I’ll have him read it first. If he feels it’s crossed a line and waded into our personal life as a couple, my work is to rewrite it in a way that honors him and ultimately, us. We don’t keep secrets. This has only built stronger mutual trust in our relationship.

©P N

Most importantly, waiting provides cover for my marriage and children. No amount of post popularity is worth bringing injury to those

to destabilize this structure with insensitive over-sharing.

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In the case of the previously mentioned potty-training story, which I posted recently, my now-teenage

No amount of post popularity is worth bringing injury to those I love best.

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son read it and laughed. However, he would have felt deeply humiliated had I posted about the story a few years earlier, regardless that the point of the story isn’t his bathroom drama. The by-product of this practice is that it’s brought my husband and kids into my social media life. Additionally, my conscience is clear. Like you, I’m concerned about protecting those I love best—my family. Anything I put online about them deserves close inspection. They’re counting on me. ¶

Academics with Real World Learning Openings in grades 9-11

A variation of this essay was originally published on goodmenproject.com. Kathryn Streeter’s writing has appeared in the Washington Post; the Huffington Post; Scary Mommy; and Brain, Child magazine. Find her at kathrynstreeter.com, on Facebook, and at Twitter@streeterkathryn.

November 2016

707-459-6344 16201 Hwy 101, Ukiah lavidaschool.org

MendoLakeFamilyLife 15


College Wise

for Student Aid (FAFSA) is usually what financial aid officers use to determine an applicant’s financial need. Until this year, the FAFSA was based on the tax return from the prior year. Many families who filed for tax return extensions were unable to submit their FAFSA forms before their tax returns were complete. This delay jeopardized their ability to receive financial aid. Now, FAFSA will be based on tax returns from two years ago instead of the prior year. This will enable all applicants to turn in their financial aid applications

How to Make the Most of Admissions Changes

By Greg Kaplan

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n the face of skyrocketing competition, your children should use changes to colleges’ admissions processes to increase their odds of earning admission and even reduce their cost of attendance. Consider the following as your children prepare to apply:

Less required entrance exams. Yes, you read that correctly. Many highly selective colleges no longer require submitting two or three SAT II subject tests on top of the SAT I or ACT. The University of California system, Columbia University, the University of Pennsylvania, and other highly selective colleges have all dropped the SAT II subject test requirement. Check to see if the colleges your children are interested in attending require the SAT II. Your children should continue to focus on scoring high on the SAT I or ACT. Applicants are using social media to earn admission. Long the mainstay for keeping up-to-date 16 MendoLakeFamilyLife

24/7 with friends, social media is now helping applicants earn admission to their dream colleges. ZeeMee, a social media site dedicated exclusively to undergraduate and graduate school admissions, allows applicants to create a free profile. They can post a video, photos, awards, and other information to show their personality and bring their application to life. Applicants can share their profile with admissions officers by putting a link to it in their college applications. Changes to the financial aid process. At many colleges, financial aid is available on a first-come, first-serve basis. The Free Application

Social media is helping applicants earn admission to their dream colleges. on time and be eligible to receive the maximum amount of financial aid for which they qualify. In addition to receiving financial aid, your child can apply for scholarships. Local scholarships sometimes receive few applicants and provide your children with excellent odds. Consult with your children’s guidance counselors and use scholarships.com to find applicable scholarships. Start the search in the ninth grade, and dedicate a couple of hours a month to it. ¶ Greg Kaplan is a college application strategist, author of Earning Admission: Real Strategies for Getting into Highly Selective Colleges (2016), and the founder of Soaring Eagle College Consulting. See earningadmission.com for more information.

November 2016 www.mendolakefamilylife.com


kids to have one or two days of extra screen time, and they will probably enjoy it as well.

4

More entertainment. What do you do when TV time gets old? Build a fort, get out craft supplies, or play with blocks. “I have a secret stash of toys that I only bring out when I’m sick,” says Jessi Cole, mom of three. “Since they are rarely out, my kids think it’s a huge treat.” Try having the kids read a book aloud or

A Mom Sick Day 5 Tips for Keeping Chaos at Bay By Sarah Lyons

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e do what we can to avoid it, but at some point, the inevitable will happen: Mom will get sick. Enjoying a quiet, restful day in bed is not an option for most mothers. Here are some tips to help you survive.

1

Call in the reinforcements. In some cases, the working parent may be able to stay home and help with the kids, but often this is not a feasible option. So don’t be afraid to ask friends and family to take the kids to school or help cook dinner. Most friends are willing to help, especially if you offer to return the favor in the future.

2

Simplify meals. Order take-out, raid the freezer, or let the kids eat cereal for dinner. “I’ve had my husband order, pay for, and have pizza delivered from work because

www.mendolakefamilylife.com

when I’m sick, preparing meals is impossible,” says Rodganna Avery, mom of three.

3

Let go of “normal.” Many families limit the amount of screen time their children are allowed each day, but when Mom is sick, it’s okay to relax the rules. Allowing extra TV or video-game time helps to entertain the kids so Mom can rest. Mother of six Chrissy Roussel says, “When you are sick, just focus on making sure they’re fed and changed. Let go of the ‘normal’ parenting rules for a few days.” It won’t hurt the November 2016

Teach your kids to prepare simple meals like sandwiches or cereal so they can help themselves when needed. put on a puppet show for you while you rest. When Mom is sick, anything goes. The goal is to keep the kids entertained as quietly as possible throughout the day.

5

Plan ahead. The last tip is one you can do in advance. Before you get the first hint of a runny nose or sore throat, prepare for sick days. Set aside some special toys and movies (see number 4), keep easy-to-prepare snacks and freezer meals on hand, and teach your kids to prepare simple meals like sandwiches or cereal so they can help themselves when needed. As moms, we do so much for our families. When we aren’t feeling well, a smoothly run household can quickly spiral out of control. It’s okay to let the house go and rely on others for a few days. If you have time to rest, you should be back to your old self in no time. ¶ Sarah Lyons is a busy mother of six children, including one-year-old triplets.

MendoLakeFamilyLife 17


Le Petit Chef Hold a ‘Chopped Junior’ Contest at Home

By Kris Thomason

L

ooking for a fun way to get your kids into the kitchen this Thanksgiving? Hold a Chopped Junior contest at home! All you need is a few staple foods, some kitchen space, cooking/prep

tools, and kids who are creative and up for a challenge.

I started watching Food Network’s Chopped Junior show with my kids to let them see children in the kitchen. They loved it so much that now we regularly watch the show as a family. Modeled after the network’s hit program Chopped, Chopped Junior features 8–12-year-olds preparing dishes in a competition. There are four children at the beginning of each episode and one winner at the end. Contestants are given a closed box of secret ingredients that they must use in their creation of three courses/rounds: appetizer, entree, and dessert. (They can use any other ingredients in the kitchen, too.) They are given 20–30 minutes per round to create an appropriate 18 MendoLakeFamilyLife

dish. At the end of a round, dishes are judged and one person is “chopped.” At home you can do a more relaxed and friendly version of Chopped Junior. Start with one course and no child gets “chopped.” Your intent is not to pit your kids against each other, but rather to get them into the kitchen for some fun. At our last little cooking “contest,” the secret ingredients were ham, cheese, green onion, and eggs. We were so impressed by the creativity of our five-, seven-, and nine-year-olds. We got everything from green eggs and ham to egg salad to onion pie.

Step one. Choose age-appropriate secret ingredients. For younger children, basic kitchen staples are the best: cheese, butter, lunchmeat, bread, eggs, cucumber, carrot, tuna, etc. For a dessert round, try fruit, yogurt, ice cream, chocolate, peanut butter, or marshmallows. For older kids, experiment with more interesting

They made everything from green eggs and ham to egg salad to onion pie. ingredients: sweet potatoes, dragon fruit, dried cranberries, shrimp, chili powder, or tofu. If there is more than one secret ingredient, be sure to choose ingredients that are different, yet complement one another. Place your secret ingredients in a box or bag, and hide it from your children until you are ready to start.

November 2016 www.mendolakefamilylife.com


Step two. Place the following at each child’s station:

dishes to you. We give one to five stars in the following categories:

• Secret-ingredient box

• Presentation

• Preparation tools (child-friendly knife, cutting board, peeler, can opener, cheese grater)

• Taste

• Serving plate • Paper towels or dish towel Step three. Prepare the kids for the contest. Just like the actual show, we announce the names of each little chef. We like to do mini-interviews, asking the kids

Your intent is not to pit your kids against each other, but rather to get them into the kitchen for some fun. about their favorite things to cook and what they love about cooking. (If you aren’t feeling it, you can skip all that. However, kids really love it when parents get into the spirit.) Rundown the rules: • They must use the secret ingredients in their dishes. • They are allowed to use any other ingredient in the kitchen. • They must finish their dishes in the time allowed. Step four. Ready, set, go! Start the timer and let them use their culinary imagination. Support them if they need it—answer questions, offer up suggestions, and help them find ingredients and use kitchen equipment.

• Creativity

praise to everyone for participating. Compliment and discuss the uniqueness of each child’s creation. This activity is guaranteed to not only develop your children’s

• Station cleanliness (This one is important, otherwise you will have a huge mess on your hands.)

Kids really love it when parents get into the spirit.

Have each child explain her or his dish, how she or he came up with the idea, and if there were any challenges encountered in preparing the dish.

kitchen and food skills, but also their independence, confidence, and creativity. You’ll be preparing your budding chefs for a future of food appreciation. ¶

Step six. At the end of the judging, announce the recipient of the most stars as the winner. Of course, give

Kris Thomason is a local retired software engineer and a stay-at-home mom of three children.

Secrets to Success Your cooking contest can easily be adjusted to accommodate your children’s ages and experience in the kitchen. It can be done with even the youngest kids. Here are some pointers to plan your contest: • Start with a dessert round. Who doesn’t want to create something out of their favorite foods? • Place ingredients and tools in the workspace of younger kids. • Use one secret ingredient for the younger crowd; add more secret ingredients for older kids. • Don’t add ingredients that need to be cooked until your kids are responsible and ready for that kind of preparation. • Don’t add ingredients that require the use of a knife until your kids are ready to use one. • Allow kids plenty of time so they don’t feel rushed. Place a very long time limit (or none at all) on younger kids’ food preparation. • Encourage kids to taste as they go. Remind them to season their creations. • Kids can work in teams, too.

Step five. When their time is up, they will take turns presenting their www.mendolakefamilylife.com

November 2016

MendoLakeFamilyLife 19


November Calendar of Events

Run Among the Vines

T

ake advantage of the beauty of fall with a run or walk through Lake County’s golden, rolling hills. The Vine to Wine Run’s 5K and 10K courses will give participants an intimate experience of the Cache Creek Vineyards in Clearlake Oaks. And at the end of the race, hungry runners even will be treated to a gourmet hot lunch created by the Lake County Campus Woodland Community College Culinary Program; those 21 and over will also receive wine-tasting tickets and a wine glass. You can’t register on race day, November 6, but you can register through November 3 at runsignup.com/vinetowinerun. Fees are $70 for adults; $60 for ages 17–20; and $40 for ages 9–16. Race start time is 10 a.m. (Don’t forget to set your clocks back an hour.) ¶

Tuesday 1 FREE Mother-Wise Lakeport Playgroup. Come meet other pregnant women & mothers. Tuesdays. 1–3 p.m. 180 N. Main St., Lakeport. 245-4335. mother-wise.org. facebook.com/ motherwiselakecounty. FREE Karate Classes. Sponsored

by the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Activities League (SAL). $10 annual insurance/registration fee (can be waived in the best interest of the child). Continuous enrollment. Tuesdays. Ages 8 & up: 6–7:30 p.m. Advanced training: 7:30–8:30 p.m. Ukiah High School. 1000 Low Gap Rd., Ukiah. facebook.com/ mendocinocountysheriffsyouth activitiesleague. FREE Boxing Classes. Sponsored by the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Activities League (SAL). $10 annual insurance/registration fee (can be waived in the best interest of the child). Gym membership not required. Sign up for program at

20 MendoLakeFamilyLife

time of class or at gym on weekdays. Continuous enrollment. Ages 5 & up. Tuesdays & Thursdays. 7–8 p.m. Redwood Health Club. 3101 S. State St., Ukiah. facebook.com/ mendocinocountysheriffsyouth activitiesleague. FREE Day of the Dead Celebration.

Event facilitates embracing life, death, family, community & the art of ritual. 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Fort Bragg Library. 499 E. Laurel St., Fort Bragg. artsmendocino.org. FREE Tire Recycling Month. Can

only drop off when site is opened, not during regular Hazmobile hours. Limit 9 tires. No rims. No tire dealers may participate. Tuesdays– Saturdays. 8 a.m.–4 p.m. Thru Nov. 12. Hazmobile Base Facility. 3200 Taylor Dr., Ukiah. 468-9710. FREE Halloween Party for Teens.

Ghoulish face-painting, treats, make-your-own horror movie & ghastly games. 3:30–5:30 p.m. Ukiah Library. 105 N. Main St., Ukiah. 467-6434. mendolibrary.org.

Wednesday 2 FREE Local Motion After-School Drop-In. Grades 6–12. Snacks, games, homework & computer access & community awareness exercises. Sponsored by Healthy Start. Wednesdays & Thursdays. 2:45–5 p.m. Harwood Hall & Family Resource Center. 44400 Willis Ave., Laytonville. 984-8089. laytonville.org. FREE Light Up a Life Candlelight Ceremony. Honors

the lives & memories of loved ones who have passed. Hosted by Hospice Services. 6:30–8 p.m. Hospice Services of Lake County. 1862 Parallel Dr., Lakeport. 263-6222. lakecountyhospice.org. FREE Foster Care Orientation.

Presented by Redwood Community Services. Short- & long-term options including foster to adopt. Nov. 2, 5:30–7 p.m.: C. V. Starr Community Center. 300 S. Lincoln St., Fort Bragg. Nov. 3, 5:30–7 p.m.: Willits Library. 390 E. Commercial St., Willits. Nov. 18, 5:30–7 p.m.: Foster

November 2016 www.mendolakefamilylife.com


Family Agency. 800 N. State St., Ukiah. Nov. 19, 1–2:30 p.m.: Foster Family Agency. 320 1st St., Lakeport. rcs4kids.org.

Thursday 3 FREE Karate Classes. Sponsored

sibling of any age. 6–8 p.m. Hospice Services. 1862 Parallel Dr., Lakeport. 874-8232.

Friday 4 FREE Breastfeeding Support Group.

Walk-ins welcome. Get information

by the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Activities League (SAL). $10 annual insurance/registration fee (can be waived in the best interest of the child). Gym membership not required. Sign up for program at time of class or at gym on weekdays. Enrollment continuous. Thursdays. Little Dragons (small child/parental participation, co-ed, ages 3–7): 5–5:30 p.m. Kid Kicks (ages 7–11): 6–6:45 p.m. Tweens/ Teens/Adults (ages 11 & up): 7–8:30 p.m. Willits Body Works. 1511 S. Main St., Willits. facebook.com/ mendocinocountysheriffsyouth activitiesleague. FREE Tours of Earth & Sky. All ages are invited to view first-hand the moon, planets, distant galaxies, nebulas & star clusters. Children under 14 must be accompanied by adult. Suggested $5 donation per family. 7:30 p.m. Observatory Park. 432 Observatory Ave., Ukiah. cityofukiah.com/observatory-park.

exploration, see exhibits & meet scientists in our new visiting center, The Crow’s Nest. Thursdays–Sundays. 11 a.m.–3 p.m. South Fort Bragg Coastal Trail. Cypress St., Fort Bragg. 733-NOYO. noyocenter.org. FREE Compassionate Friends.

Self-help bereavement support group for families that have experienced the death of a child, grandchild, or www.mendolakefamilylife.com

Cinderella. Musical presented by Gloriana Music Theater. $8–$18.

Hey, Doc!

FREE Noyo Center for Marine Science. Learn about scientific

while meeting other moms. Facilitated by midwife lactation consultant. Fridays. 11 a.m.–noon. Mendocino Coast Clinic. 855 Sequoia Circle, Fort Bragg. 964-1251. healthymendocino.org.

HILLSIDE

333 Laws Ave., Ukiah

(707) 468-1010 LAKEVIEW

5335 Lakeshore Blvd. Lakeport

(707) 263-7725

LITTLE LAKE

45 Hazel St., Willits

(707) 456-9600 mchcinc.org

November 2016

Is there really a frog in my throat?” Our providers have answers for those crazy kid questions–and your serious ones, too. WE ACCEPT Medicare, Medi-Cal, Partnership and other insurance. MCHC HEALTH CENTERS IS AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY PROVIDER AND EMPLOYER.

MendoLakeFamilyLife 21


Fridays & Saturdays: 7:30 p.m. Sundays: 3 p.m. Thru Nov. 13. Eagles Hall Theatre. 210 N. Corry St., Fort Bragg. 964-SHOW. gloriana.org. Mendocino Beer, Wine & Mushroom Festival. Foraging

expeditions, art classes, performances. Events take place throughout the county. Thru Nov. 13. Download full schedule: visitmendocino.com. 866-466-3636. FREE How to Experience the Psychological Good Life. Workshop by Niel Nedley, M. D., a leader in lifestyle medicine & mental health. Emotional intelligence, nutrition & other topics will be discussed. Thru Nov. 5. Nov. 4: 6:30–8 p.m. Nov. 5: 9:30 a.m.–7 p.m. Ukiah Valley Conference Center. 200 S. School St., Ukiah. RSVP: 463-7523.

ReRunway Fashion Show Fundraiser.

6th Annual Wine, Kibble &

Recycled clothes fashion show & silent & live auctions. Benefits breast cancer services of Sutter Lakeside Hospital. $30. 4:30–8:30 p.m. Boatique Winery. 8255 Red Hill Rd., Kelseyville. boatiquewines.com.

Bids Harvest Party. Presented by Humane Society for Inland Mendocino County. Tri-tip dinner seatings: 4:30–6:30 p.m. Vegetarian food available. Tickets: $22–$25. Ages 6 & under free. Quarter, live & silent auctions: $10 per bid paddle plus quarters. Redwood Empire Fairgrounds. Carl Purdy Hall. 1055 N. State St., Ukiah. 485-0123. mendohumanesociety.org.

Saturday 5 Armistice Day Bazaar. Baked

goods, crafts & fun. 10 a.m.–2 p.m. Laurel & Harrison Streets, Fort Bragg. visitmendocino.com. FREE Is This Thing Even On?

Help with using a smartphone, downloading a book from the library, or navigating the Internet. Saturdays. 1–3 p.m. Ukiah Library. 105 N. Main St., Ukiah. 467-6434. mendolibrary.org.

Harvest Festival. Dinner & silent

auction fundraiser to benefit the ministries of Ukiah United Methodist Church. (A children’s room with pizza, board games & child care will be available for ages 12 & under.) $15–$25. 5:30 p.m. Ukiah United Methodist Church. 270 N. Pine St., Ukiah. visitukiah.com.

Now Accepting K-12 Registration

Ukiah Independent Study Academy Serving K-12

Flex Time & Days • Tailored Learning Eligible for UHS Sports • Middle College Opportunity College & Career Readiness • WASC Accredited

UKIAH UNIFIED SCHOOL DISTRICT

1000 Low Gap Rd., Ukiah • 707-472-5906 22 MendoLakeFamilyLife

Local Resources , Baby Essentials, Consignment, Local Artisans, Children’s and Maternity Clothes, Toys, Books, And Much More!

Don’t forget every Thursday is $3 Deal Day, stop by to learn more! 198 S School St. Ukiah - 707.462.1020 - www.MendoBaby.com November 2016 www.mendolakefamilylife.com


Westport Disc Golf Tournament.

An 18-basket disc gold tournament. Lunch included. $30–$60. Registration: 8 a.m. First toss: 9 a.m. Abalone St., Westport. 357-5171. mendocoastrec.org. FREE Holiday Craft Fair. Sponsored

by Lakeport Women’s Civic Club. 25+ vendors selling handmade creations. Big bake sale & homemade chili & soup. 9 a.m.–3:30 p.m. Kelseyville Presbyterian Church. 5340 3rd St., Kelseyville.

Sunday 6 FREE First Fiddlers’ Jam. Listen

to some terrific fiddle tunes played by members of the Northern California Old Time Fiddlers Group. Noon–2 p.m. Ely Stage Stop. 9921 Soda

Bay Rd. (Hwy. 128), Kelseyville. lakecounty.com.

Friday 11

FREE Grand Opening of Willits Hub.

Food, music & festivities. 4–6 p.m. 630 S. Main St., Willits. 459-4110. willits.org. Vine to Wine Run. 5K

run/walk & 10K run. Participants will experience vineyards up close. $40–$70. Benefits Lakeport & Lower Lake High School Cross Country. Shirt pickup: 8:30–9:30 a.m. Race: 10 a.m. Cache Creek Vineyards. 250 New Long Valley Rd., Clearlake Oaks. 998-1200. Register by Nov. 3: runsignup.com/ vinetowinerun.

Ukiah

Guitars for the Troops. Live

music by the Johnny Young Band & Kingsborough. $10. Proceeds supply guitars & donations to local veterans groups. 6 p.m. Redwood Empire Fairgrounds. Carl Purdy Hall. 1055 N. State St., Ukiah. ukiahchamber.com. Veterans Day. A day to honor & remember our veterans. FREE National Park Service.

Entrance fees will be waived on Veterans Day.

Saturday 12 Hopland Sheepdog Trials. Hosted by the Hopland Research & Extension Center.Theatre Families will work with Players Presents

Ukiah Players Theatre Presents

DIRECTED BY JENNY PETERMAN

★ No Public show Nov. 19th ★ Generously Underwritten by Magruder Ranch, John Chan Plumbing, & Selzer Realty

Generously Underwritten by

Showtimes TICKETSJohn Chan Plumbing, Magruder Ranch, Thurs., Fri., & Sat. at 7pm Sun. at 2pm

UPT Box Office (707) 462-9226

at ukiahplayerstheatre.org &Online Selzer Realty Mendocino Book Company

Ukiah Playhouse, 1041 Low Gap Rd

TICKETS

www.mendolakefamilylife.com

November 2016

UPT Box Office (707) 462-9226 MendoLakeFamilyLife Online at ukiahplayerstheatre.org Mendocino Book Company

23


wool & learn about how they can get involved with 4-H. Food & snacks available. Thru Nov. 13. 11 a.m.–2 p.m. $5. Under age 12 free (ticket good for both days). Hopland Research & Extension Center. 4070 University Rd., Hopland. 744-1424, ext. 105. hrec. ucanr.edu.

de Aranjuez. Stravinsky’s The Firebird & works by Paizzolla & Marquez also on the program. Adults $20. Under age 18 free. Thru Nov. 13. Nov. 12: 7:30 p.m. Nov. 13: 2 p.m. Cotton Auditorium. 500 N. Harold St., Fort Bragg. 964-0898. symphonyoftheredwoods.org.

Coast Recreation, district-wide second grade swim lessons & other programs. 9 a.m.–5 p.m. C. V. Starr Community Center. 300 S. Lincoln St., Fort Bragg. 964-9446.

FREE Teen Leadership Council.

FREE Mendocino Coast Audubon

Want to make a difference in your community? Teens will gain valued skills & experience helping with projects, designing new teen space, planning events & recommending books. All teens welcome. 3–4 p.m. Ukiah Library. 105 N. Main St., Ukiah. 463-4490. mendolibrary.org.

Society Field Trip. Drive along Hwy.

Hors d’oeuvres, dessert & wine tasting & silent auction. Must be 21 & over to attend. $25. (Sips wine tickets sold separately for $5 each.) Benefits CASA, an organization that advocates for foster, former foster, delinquent & at-risk youth. 3–5:30 p.m. Barra of Mendocino Winery. 7051 N. State St., Redwood Valley. 463-6503. mendocinocasa.org.

Symphony of the Redwoods Fall

1 & stop at pullouts to scan the fields between Elk & Point Arena, wintering grounds for a large number of raptors, including ferruginous hawks. 9 a.m. All-day trip. Bring lunch. Meet in the Navarro River parking area (just south of the bridge) to carpool. mendocinocoastaudubon.org.

Concert. Featuring

Aquathon. Swim

guitar soloists Paul Psarras in Rodrigo’s Concierto

Sunday 13 Sips, Eats & Sweets Fundraiser.

or walk to win. A fundraiser that supports Mendocino

mendo lake

LOCAL

#1 local resource for for 25 years local families

magazine • web • email • events

24 MendoLakeFamilyLife

HEY MOM GIVE US A SHOUT!

We want to know what you think. • What did you like in this issue? • What do you want to see more or less of? • Know a teacher, coach, or special person that makes local family life better? • Know of an upcoming event or fun family outing? • Want to write stories or recipes, or blog for Family Life?

e-mail melissa@family-life.us November 2016 www.mendolakefamilylife.com


G

Monday 14 Full Moon Lighthouse Tour. Enjoy

a view from the tallest lighthouse on the West Coast. Finish with a glass of champagne, juice & snacks. Tickets $30 or two for $50. 7:30–9:30 p.m. Point Arena Lighthouse. 45500 Lighthouse Rd., Point Arena. Reservations taken until 3:30 p.m. Nov. 11: 882-2809. pointarenalighthouse.com.

Tuesday 15 FREE Open Auditions for Music Man. Thru Nov. 17. 4–7 p.m. Konocti Education Center. 15850-A Dam Rd. Ext., Clearlake. 994-6447. konoctiusd.org.

Wednesday 16

Tickets: Adults: $20 Seniors over 65: $18 Under 18: $10 $ 5 more at the door Fort Bragg Cotton Auditorium

Dec. 10 at 7pm Dec. 11 at 2pm Ukiah

Mendocino College Center Theatre

463-2290

www.mendocinoballet.org

Dec. 16 at 7pm Dec. 17 at 2 & 7pm Dec. 18 at 2pm

Ticket Outlets: Mendocino Book Co. & Mendocino Ballet: Ukiah Out of this World: Mendocino • Mazahar: Willits Pippis Longstockings & Harvest Market: Fort Bragg

“Where Dreams to Dance Come True!” www.mendolakefamilylife.com

Free Montessori elementary education for children ages 5 through 13

Call:

707-462-0913

treeoflifeschool@pacific.net www.treeoflifeschool.net

Dickens Christmas

Market Saturday

B

The Nutcracker

Tree of Life Charter School First open enrollment ends 1/31/17

FREE Baby Story Time. Ages 3–17 months & caretakers welcome for reading, rhymes, finger play & songs. Older & younger siblings are always welcome. Wednesdays. 10:15–11:45 a.m. Ukiah Library. 105 N. Main St., Ukiah. 467-6434. mendolibrary.org.

PRESENTS

Multi-age communities of learners work together to discover aspects of the natural and social worlds

ive your child a joyful learning experience full of discovery with:  Beautiful hands-on learning materials, lessons, & projects  Exploration of own interests & abilities  Experiential learning with field trips, arts  Respectful and caring learning community

November 26 Enjoy the sights & sounds of an old fashioned holiday Christmas Market Main Street merchants & vendors will offer marvelous holiday gifts & food. 11am-6pm

Come in costume & enter the Dickens theme costume contest for fabulous prizes. Strolling minstrels. Photos with Santa 11am-3pm Take a special photo with Santa.

Tree Lighting 5:30pm

Presented by The Lakeport Main Street Association

November 2016

MendoLakeFamilyLife 25


FREE Bilingual Story Hour for Preschoolers. Story time in Spanish

& English, along with songs & crafts. 11 a.m.–noon. Ukiah Library. 105 N. Main St., Ukiah. 467-6434. mendolibrary.org.

Thursday 17 Peter Pan. The classic story of a free-spirited young boy who can fly & never grows up. $10–$20. Nov. 17, 18, 25 & 26: 7 p.m. Nov. 20 & 27: 2 p.m. Thru Dec. 18. Ukiah Players Theatre. 1041 Low Gap Rd., Ukiah. ukiahplayerstheatre.org.

Friday 18 FREE Recycling Buy Back. Sell recyclables (glass, aluminum & plastics). Front of Konocti Vista Casino. 2755 Mission Rancheria Rd., Lakeport. 10 a.m.–2 p.m. 263-3924, ext. 132.

Saturday 19 FREE Know Lake County Lecture Series. Archaeology of Yuki tribe. 2–4

p.m. Lakeport Library. 1425 N. High St., Lakeport. 263-8817. co.lake.ca.us.

Sunday 20 Fall Concert. Lake

County Symphony plays classical favorites. $25–$30. 3 p.m. Soper Reese Theatre. 275 S. Main St., Lakeport. 263-0577. soperreesetheatre.com.

Friday 25 FREE Festival of Trees & Holiday Bazaar. Center

will be transformed into mid-19th century village. Locally made fine crafts & baked goods. Activities & crafts for children, with visits from Mr. & Mrs. Claus. Nov. 25: 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Nov. 26: 10 a.m.–4 p.m. Gualala Arts Center. 46501 Old State Hwy., Gualala. 884-1138. gualalaarts.org. FREE 57th Annual Thanksgiving Arts & Crafts Fair. Unique

handmade artwork, glasswork, jewelry, ceramics & much more! Food & live music. Thru Nov. 26. 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Mendocino Art Center.

Love Working with Kids?

WORK AT HOME • CHOOSE YOUR OWN HOURS • WORK WITH CHILDREN

45200 Little Lake St., Mendocino. 937-5818. mendocinoartcenter.org. Festival of Lights. The gardens are decorated with colorful holiday lights. $10. Ages 16 & under free. Fridays–Sundays. Thru Dec. 18. 5–7:30 p.m. Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens. 18220 N. Hwy. 1, Fort Bragg. 964-4352, ext. 10. gardenbythesea.org.

Saturday 26 FREE Dickens Faire. Handmade

crafts, food & photos with Santa. Period costumes are encouraged. 11 a.m.–6 p.m. Main St., Lakeport. 263-8843. lakeportmainstreet.com.

Sunday 27 Mendonoma Chamber Chorus: The Season in Song. A

45-minute concert of seasonal a cappella songs. $15. Ages 17 & under free with paying adult. 4 p.m. Gualala Arts Center. 46501 Old State Hwy., Gualala. 884-1138. gualalaarts.org.

SIGN UP TODAY FOR

Own Your Own Business • Free Training and other great incentives for attending fun workshops. • Child Care Assistance for lowincome eligible families. • Free Child Care Referrals.

1-800-606-5550 ext. 211 26 MendoLakeFamilyLife

Rural Communities Child Care

un FBlast! Weekend

Find out what’s happening this weekend. MendoLakeFamilyLife.com

November 2016 www.mendolakefamilylife.com


Marketplace Tutoring

Schools

Tuition-free Montessori elementary for ages 5-13  Hands-on, arts and music integrated with academics

 National Green Campus  Promotes responsibility, respect, and peace

307 North State Street Ukiah

707-468-1300

Located on north end of Fairgrounds PO Box 966 Ukiah 95482

www.tutoringcenter.com

A Garden of De-Lights

T

he Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens in Fort Bragg gets an infusion of illuminated whimsy during its annual Festival of Lights. Listen to live music and nibble on sweet treats as you stroll through grounds dressed up in dragons, fish, and swans constructed of multicolored lights. The floral fun takes place Fridays through Sundays, November 25–December 18, 5–7:30 p.m.; admission is $10 or free for children ages 16 and under. On November 30, 5:30–8 p.m., a special gala event featuring local wines, craft brews, hors d’oeuvres, and desserts will be held at the gardens to raise money for free Festival of Lights admission for children. See gardenbythesea.org for more information. ¶

mendo lake

treeoflifeschool@pacific.net www.treeoflifeschool.net

LOCAL

#1 local for 25 years resource for local families magazine • web • email • events

Get Mom’s Attention! YOUR AD HERE Classifieds Work Call 586-9562

good tale is even better when it’s told with music. With a ready Irish brogue, musician Patrick Ball will tell a Celtic story, animating characters and plots with the pull of the strings on his harp. See him perform on November 13, 2–4 p.m., at the Willits Community Theater in Willits. Tickets are $15 and available at brownpapertickets.com. See willitstheater.org for more information. ¶

www.mendolakefamilylife.com

La Vida

Charter School • Free K-12 Public Charter • Home Study with On-Site Classes • WASC Accredited 707-459-6344 www.LaVidaSchool.org 16201 N. Hwy. 101, Willits

Accelerated Achievement Academy • • • •

Free Public School Grades 4-12 Small classes Support for struggling students

(707) 463-7080 1031 N. State St.

Call of the Celtic

A

707-462-0913

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November 2016

MendoLakeFamilyLife 27


Humor Break

The Well Visit Twins Take On Doc and Mom By Cheryl Maguire

It’s going to be easier, right? I try to convince myself of this as Nemo darts by a cave in the fish tank. Even though we are seated in the non-sick section of the waiting area, I feel germs crawling all over me. My twins’ well visit has always been challenging. As babies, they cried the entire time. As toddlers, they sprinted in opposite directions while I attempted to corral them back into the office. As school-aged children, they still dashed out of the room, but their longer legs enabled them to outrun me. Now that they’re older and capable of following directions (most of the time), I’m really hoping for a more mundane experience. Thirty minutes tick by. My positive outlook diminishes. “I’m bored.” “So am I.” “When are we going home?” “Yeah, I wanna leave.” Before I can conjure up a reply, the nurse calls their names, and leads us to a 10- by 12-foot windowless room. At least they can’t escape this space. “Now remember, today you have a new doctor,” I state sternly. “I don’t want another doctor.” “I wanna go home.” “Are we getting shots?” 28 MendoLakeFamilyLife

My son eyes the door, definitely construing an escape plan. He is infamous for exiting unannounced when the nurse with the needle enters the room. We hear a knock on the door. I feel like saying, “Finally,” but instead I answer, “Come in.” The doctor’s questions begin routinely, but then take an uneasy turn toward

My son is infamous for exiting unannounced when the nurse with the needle enters the room. my parenting techniques (or lack thereof). He vigorously records his observations. “Do they play video games?” “Yes, Minecraft.” “Do you know they kill each other in that game?” asks the doctor. “Yeah, but there isn’t any blood,” my son interjects. We soon become well versed in the evils of Minecraft. That 30-minute wait is starting to make sense.

“Do they watch TV before bedtime?” “No. We read books.” “We watch TV,” my daughter objects. Great, now the doctor thinks I’m lying and letting them watch TV. The doctor glances at all of us and then probably scribbles, “Mother allows violent video games, TV before bed, and is unaware of the dangers of both; felt the need to lie, schedule follow up.” “Do they eat all meals at the kitchen table?” As my daughter would say, “I got this.” I’m fanatical about eating only in the kitchen since I despise cleaning crumbs from the couch. But, I’m guessing he is asking due to some “health” benefit from eating at a table instead of an ottoman. “Yes,” I respond, cautiously staring at my children. “She won’t let us eat in the family room,” my daughter offers with a tattling tone, without realizing she is finally making me sound like a competent parent. “Do they eat green vegetables?”

“Do they watch TV?”

“They like corn.”

“Not really.” They’re too busy playing video games to have time to watch TV.

“I don’t eat corn,” my son protests.

November 2016 www.mendolakefamilylife.com


Fortunately, the doctor focuses on my inability to answer his question instead of my erroneous response.

Family Portraits

“No, green vegetables. Do they eat green vegetables?”

Individuals • Families • Events

“Not really.” They aren’t even offered green vegetables since I gave up trying to get them to eat green vegetables years ago. The questions end, and he begins the actual physical examination. Being a stickler for cleanliness, I relax a little. My calm is interrupted with the realization that the doctor is scrutinizing my daughter’s appendage. “Can you take a look at this?” the doctor asks. I almost utter, “gross.” There is a horrible, angry rash all over my daughter’s leg. “It looks infected. I am going to prescribe an antibiotic.” He is furiously transcribing for at least five minutes without looking at us. I can only imagine what is going on over there. By the time he is done with this “well visit” he will have an entire book written, a possible bestseller. I’m guessing his note states something along the lines of, “Mother doesn’t understand yellow corn is not a green vegetable, and she is oblivious about proper bathing procedures. Recommend parenting classes, stat.”

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In the next room a baby is crying, most likely getting shots, and I can’t help but feel envious. ¶ This piece was originally published on Parent.co. Cheryl Maguire’s writing has been published in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Count Your Blessings (Chicken Soup for the Soul, 2009). Find her at Twitter@ CherylMaguire05.

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Cooking with Kids

Love a Latte Perk It Up with Pumpkin

By Carol J. Alexander

T

his is the time of year when just the word pumpkin makes people swoon. For a holiday morning treat, add pumpkin to a latte. The recipe below uses pumpkin you process yourself, rather than the canned variety. Kids can help you dig out pulp and roast seeds. (Find a recipe for a child-friendly, coffee-free pumpkin “latte” here: allrecipes.com/recipe/179582/ famous-no-coffee-pumpkin-latte.)

Cut your pumpkin in half, remove the seeds and pulp, and set aside for snacking. Peel the skin from the flesh. Compost the skins and cut the pumpkin meat into chunks.

How to Process Pumpkin Begin with choosing a medium-sized cooking pumpkin. (The overly large, jack-o-lantern varieties are more water and seeds than meat; they tend to be stringy inside and are not as sweet.)

You can use the puree instead of canned pumpkin in your favorite pies, muffins, cakes, cookies, and soups. Freeze in quantities suitable for your favorite recipes. (It will keep in the freezer for six to eight months.) Ice cube trays make the perfect container for freezing small amounts for recipes that only use a little at a time.

Wash the pumpkin and remove the stem. Put it on a cookie sheet and place in the oven so that it is centered from top to bottom. Bake at 325°F for about an hour, or until you can insert a fork through the skin. The length of cooking time will vary depending on the size of the pumpkin. Remove the pumpkin from the oven and allow it to cool. I bake my pumpkins whole because I’m not strong enough to cut them beforehand. After baking, they cut like butter. 30 MendoLakeFamilyLife

How To Make Pumpkin Puree Place your chunks of pumpkin in a thick-bottomed pot with a few inches of water. Simmer until all the water is cooked out and the volume is about half. Stir frequently to prevent scorching.

Pumpkin-Spice Latte for Two Ingredients 1 ½ cups whole milk 2 tablespoons of pumpkin puree 1–2 tablespoons sugar ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice 1 cup strong, hot coffee 1 tablespoon half-and-half cream 1 teaspoon vanilla Whipped cream Cinnamon Directions Heat the milk, pumpkin, and sugar until hot but not boiling. Remove from heat and add the spice, coffee, cream, and vanilla. Pour into two mugs. Top with whipped cream. Sprinkle with cinnamon. ¶ Carol J. Alexander is the author of Homestead Cooking with Carol: Bountiful Make-ahead Meals (BookBaby, 2014).

What About Those Seeds? To roast the seeds, remove them from the pulp, wash, and dry. Spread on a cookie sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt, pepper, and paprika. For a sweet flavor, sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon. Or try your favorite popcorn seasoning. Bake at 325°F for about ten minutes or until golden and crispy.

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