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volume 4 · issue 6

JUNE 2013

plus Poolside envy: Beach bag essentials with loads of style.

COVER sTORY

Growing together

memories of that first pet stick with a kid for life.

Get Organized Tame your pet supplies

INsIDE Miss Molly (named for the monogram on her forehead) finds the “purr-fect” home after parking garage rescue.


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What’s lurking in your carpet? ATTENTION: Info from new EPA studies: sttudies: “Carpet must be cleaned 1st 1s stt for health, then for appearance.” s The Indoor Air Quality of most homes iss more than 70 timess more polluted than outside bers act as fi lters, outside air. air Carpet fi fibers filters, lters trapping dust mites & their feces, fungi, bacteria & more. Our vacuum system is five times more powerfull than most competitors & removes most of these pollutants. Our ANTI-ALLERGEN Botanical Service stops dust mites from reproducing. Our Green products change the molecular shape of any residual allergens…This in turn prevents your body’s receptors from recognizing any allergens remaining in the carpet, and thus you produce no histamines (no allergic reaction!).

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FROM our MOMAHA.COM editOR

momaha where moms connect vOLUME 4 · ISSUE 6 · JUNE 2013 editorial director CHRIS CHRISTEN chris.christen@owh.com 402-444-1094

designer H E I D I H O FFM A N

momaha.com editor J O S I E LOZ A josie.loza@owh.com 402-444-1075

production coordinator PAT R I C I A “ M U R P H Y ” B E N O I T

on the cover PH O TO BY C H R I S C H R I S T E N

content contributors A M Y G R AC E , DA N I E L L E H E R ZO G , M E G H A N N S C H E N S E , A M Y TO KO S , KURT A. KEELER

copy editor AMY LaMAR

to advertise, contact KRISTINE BUHMAN kristine.buhman@owh.com 402-444-1442 MARCIA OSTRANSK Y marcia.ostransky@owh.com 402-444-1489

Momaha Magazine is a monthly publication of the Omaha World-Herald, 1314 Douglas St., Suite 600, Omaha, NE 68102. Momaha is a registered trademark, and all content is copyright 2013 by the Omaha World-Herald. All rights reserved. The opinions and perspectives published herein are those of the authors and should not be construed as those of Momaha Magazine.

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Anticipation grows for first pet

K

ids and pets – a natural fit, right? Indeed, raising a child and a pet together can be a lot of fun for the whole family. Now that my three kids are getting older, they’re starting to dream about the pet that they might like. “Perhaps a dog?” asks 5-year-old Alejandra. “What about a kitten? A rabbit? A turtle?” She gets her dog “fix” when she visits her grandmother or auntie. But we’ve hit that stage where we’re seriously considering getting a pet to complement our household. Animals are great friends for kindergartners and first-graders. In a recent study released by Purdue University, more than 40 percent of 5-year-olds said that they turn to their pet when they feel sad or angry or have a secret to share. The study also found that 5- and 6-year-old pet owners have more empathy for their peers than those who don’t have an animal around the house. Are you ready to bring home a furry friend? In this issue, local families share the benefits.

Chat with Josie each Friday from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. on momaha.com Facebook.com/josie.loza @LozaFina Pinterest.com/momahaowh

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momaha.com

Dogs: They’re for the birds! Addition of a pooch to household is out of the question – at least for now

m

y family had dogs when I was growing up. Our first dog was a German Shepherd/Doberman mix named Heidi. my brother, my high school boyfriend and I found her at the pound. She was the only puppy that was not going crazy or begging for attention as we perused the Amy kennels. GrAce We loved Heidi immediately, and decided that she was the one for us. The woman in charge of the pound called my mom at work to warn her that while this puppy was small and loveable now, she would eventually become a big dog. My mom tried to steer us to a small- or medium-sized breed instead. We begged. We pleaded. We explained

4

that we already told the puppy that we would bring her home. Mom conceded, and Heidi became part of our family. My husband also had a favorite dog while growing up, and he and I assumed early in our marriage that we would someday belong to the enormous group of happy dog owners. As time went on, we were exposed to many dogs. Our friends had dogs, and our family members had dogs. We started to realize that dogs are far more work and responsibility than we are willing to take on. With a house and almost three children now, people ask when we are finally going to get a dog. I tell them that we have decided against it, and they look at me incredulously as if to say, “How can you not want a dog?” I know that owning a dog has physical, emotional and social benefits. Some parents would argue that caring for a dog develops responsibility and builds maturity in children. I’d have to argue that most parents get saddled with

the responsibilities that their children have pledged to take on. Some people are dedicated owners who train and nurture good dogs. I know dogs that are constant companions to older people who live alone, and to people who have recently lost loved ones. I also know people who can’t or won’t control their dog’s unruly behavior. I have witnessed the aftermath of dogs eating entire chairs and sofas. I have seen them dig up yards and expensive landscaping. And I have been the hesitant recipient of dead animal “gifts” that some dogs leave behind. For us, the downsides outweigh the upsides of having a dog. I dread the day when one of our sons asks to own a dog. My husband claims that this child will have to be old enough to write a compelling persuasive essay on why our family should actually have one. Admittedly, it’s the one time when I hope my child will underachieve.


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FASHION

Make a Splash S

chool’s out for summer! The lazy days of the season are here, and lounging poolside and trips to the lake become part of your routine. Aside from sunblock and a reusable water bottle, we have mapped out the best beach bag essentials. These local goodies will help you be the fashion-savvy, sun-protected supermom that we know you are. Go on, make a splash! - Meghann Schense

Straw hat, $29, Souq, Old Market

Beach blanket, $10 Lion’s Mane Vintage, Benson

Carve Designs swim bottoms, $44; bra top, $48 Scheels, Village Pointe

Betsey Johnson sunglasses, $60 Younkers, Westroads Nine West tote, $79, Younkers, Westroads It all starts with the beach bag. We can’t stop thinking about this Nine West carrier. The bright, neon stripes are the perfect pattern for the season. The durable handles, jumbo size and waterproof material make this beauty a poolside necessity.

Gels from Mel Shoes, $42 Von Maur, Westroads

Angie sundress, $69 Souq, Old Market PHOTOS: KURT A. KEELER

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SUMMER DRINKS

Season’s Staple Gets a Refreshing Twist

W

hen traditional lemonade seems too mundane, add fresh raspberries to the mix for a crisp, tart twist. Pretty enough to serve at a luncheon and refreshing enough to pour at a picnic, this recipe can be adapted for iced tea.

More at MoMaha.coM

?! Read “How I Do It,” a Q & A feature on moms getting through their day.

Click through our Kids Camp Directory.

RASPBERRY LEMONADE

CItRUS LEMONADE

2 cans (12 ounces each) frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed

2 quarts water 1 cup sugar 1 can (12 ounces) frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed 1 can (12 ounces) frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed Orange and grapefruit slices for garnish

Yields 12 servings

Yields 12 servings

2 packages (10 ounces each) frozen sweetened raspberries, partially thawed 2 to 4 tablespoons sugar 2 liters club soda, chilled Ice cubes 1. In a blender, combine lemonade concentrate, raspberries and sugar. 2. Cover and process until blended. 3. Strain to remove seeds. 4. In a 4½-quart container, combine raspberry mixture, club soda and ice cubes. 5. Serve immediately in chilled glasses.

1. In a large saucepan, heat water and sugar until sugar is dissolved, stirring occasionally. 2. Cool. 3. Transfer to a large pitcher or container; stir in concentrates. 4. Chill. 5. Serve in chilled glasses.

Join momaha’s Evening Children’s Story Time. It meets at 7 p.m. the last Friday of each month at The Bookworm.

;-) Chat with Josie each Friday from 2 to 3 p.m. on momaha.com.

courtesy of tasteofhome.com

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COVER STORY

GrowinG ToGeTher

For a kid, a pet is more than meets the eye

K

ids and pets go together like peanut butter and jelly. Through pets, children learn about companionship, loyalty, fun, responsibility and compassion. These furry (and sometimes scaly) critters have a calming presence in a child’s life, said Pam Wiese, spokeswoman for the Nebraska Humane Society. Kids confide in their pets when they’re excited, happy or sad. In return, they receive unconditional acceptance. “You could be having the worst day, but a dog will still lick your face and love you,” Wiese explained. “The unconditional love is something some children won’t get from anywhere else.” A pet, Wiese said, can even enhance a child’s ability to learn. If he needs to do his homework, a pet is a non-judgmental companion that will sit near him as he works. Kids also learn how to nurture from pets. “You don’t learn nurturing without practicing,” Wiese said. That comes from providing the pet with food and water. Your child becomes the caregiver. While girls gain a sense of nurturing from their baby dolls, most boys don’t experience it until they have their first pet. Pets provide comfort if a child

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By Josie Loza MoMaha.coM editor is scared. The child can go to his room with the dog and tell Fido all of his little secrets or about what scares him. Pets also make children more active. “If they have a pet,” Wiese said, “they’ll be more willing to get up and play with it.” While they’re wonderful additions to families, you must first know your limits, Wiese suggested. For instance, sometimes people say they prefer to adopt a puppy so it will grow up with their family. But if you’re a family that has young children, you might want to reconsider. “If you’re potty-training one child and you get a puppy, you’ll be potty-training two.” Other factors when selecting the best family pet for you include environment, size of the pet, your family’s activity level and time spent at home. While all kinds of pets can bring children pleasure, it is important to choose one that is right for your family, your home and your lifestyle – and is a pet that your child can help care for. “Every family is different. We try to match the energy level and needs of the animal with the family that comes in,” Wiese said. “If you’re a super-active family who won’t be able to check on your pet because you’re on-the-go, maybe we’ll match you up with a cat.”

Finn O’Sullivan, 5, has grown up fascinated by Japanese monsters, zombies and Great White Sharks. Creatures large and small have heightened his imagination of the natural world. “We have introduced him to animals as a way to demonstrate the important concepts of empathy and gentleness, and to some extent, responsibility,” said Ann O’Sullivan, Finn’s mother.

DOG’S DAY ON THE TOWN Go oN a diNNer date. Three Dog Bakery coordinates “Dog’s Night Out” events with area restaurants for tail-wagging fun to benefit the Nebraska Humane Society.

take your doG to the bookstore. The Bookworm in Countryside Village is a dogfriendly retailer. Your dog even gets a treat while you browse for books.


Itty Bitty Betzy “My precious Chihuahua, Betzy, loves her baby brother, Liam. Betzy has always been overprotective of me, but when Liam came into our lives, she had eyes only for him. She would sleep and stay with him until he woke up. Anytime he cried, she would get up and let us know. These pictures capture a few of those precious moments when she protected him while he slept peacefully. Now that he is older and can pull her hair, she sits close enough to be near him but far enough for him not to pull her hair. Liam thinks she’s a toy sometimes, but he’s learning to be nice to animals.” - Alejandra Sanchez

‘The hound’ stole a heart completely by surprise

W

Timmy J the Cat

“Timmy J was always the head of the household. Everyone loved our 18-pound ball of fur, including my daughters, Maggie and Kendall. They would try to play with him, but mostly he would be more content to loaf around the house. Good old Timmy J passed away a few years back. We all took it pretty hard. But this picture always puts a smile on our face. We just wish we had a tiny Snuggie for him!” - Wayne Brekke

Celebrate the holidays. In the fall, Three Dog Bakery coordinates a Growl-o-Ween event for dogs in costume. A few months later, an Easter Beg Hunt is held at Turner Park in April.

JoiN iN the 2013 Walk For the aNimals. The Sept. 29 event at the Nebraska Humane Society, 8929 Fort St., kicks off at 8:30 a.m. Registration: $10 for adults; free for kids and pets; nehumanesociety.org

hen it comes to pets, I usually can take them or leave them. So I didn’t think it was a big deal when we got our dog, Nike. Experts say that a child’s social, emotional and cognitive development (as well as allergy management) can all be encouraged by interaction with a family pet. I also know that important life lessons, such as dealing with loss, can be learned from a pet. So I was OK with helping to feed, water and walk the newest member of our family, whom I sometimes referred to simply as “the hound.” My rules were simple: No doggy kisses; no sleeping with the dog; and no feeding the dog food from the table. Over time, Nike proved to be just the right dog for us. He was laid-back and he rarely barked. He loved to play. His favorite spot was the back porch. During the summer, we’d often find him napping there. Then we returned from a brief family vacation, and we picked Nike up from the kennel. We quickly realized that something was wrong. Most of the hair from his tail and rump was missing. The next day we were faced with a difficult decision. Lovable Nike, less than 2 years old, had a rare flesh-eating skin disorder. We talked about expensive skin grafts, and even emergency “lifeflighting” him to a specialist in Iowa. My husband had one question: “What will Nike’s quality of life be like during and after all of this?” The vet did not think it would be good. I couldn’t believe it. I miss “the hound” and his annoying tail whips against my legs. As we work through our grief, it is obvious that my husband and I have taken Nike’s loss the hardest. The script was flipped on this one; our kids are consoling us instead of the other way around. Now the question we often hear from the boys is, “When can we have another dog?” I just don’t know when my heart will be ready. - Tracie McPherson

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ON THE COVER

The ON

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Molly, the day she was rescued.

Here Kitty, Kitty Hide-and-seek ends with big prize for Molly Jane McCain heard meowing in a downtown parking garage when she arrived at work early one morning on a cold day last October. Not thinking too much about it, she headed into her office at the Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce. A few hours later, McCain and colleague Patti McAtee were on their way back to the garage to make sure the kitten was OK. They found the kitten cowering under colleague Kim Sellmeyer’s car. They sprinkled tuna on the ground and waited. “The kitten inched toward me, and I snatched her up,” McAtee said. She and McCain took their rescued cargo to the Chamber’s “thinking room” to eat, drink and warm up until she could be transported to the

Nebraska Humane Society later that evening. In the meantime, colleague Karla Ewert fell in love with the rambunctious blue-eyed ball of scruffy fur. So much so that she later adopted the kitten. “I brought her home on Election Day. Our lives both changed that day,” Ewert said. She named the kitten Molly, partly for the natural marking on her forehead that resembles a monogrammed “M.” “Molly has had health problems galore,” said Ewert. And there have been issues with climbing near a cherished pottery collection in Ewert’s condo at Riverfront Place. But the kitten, now 8 months old, really is a joy. “It’s all been good,” Ewert said. “The pottery is in storage.” – Chris Christen

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get organized

CATCH Pet Peeves Contained

AIR! Omaha’s NEWEST GYM Specializing in

By Amy Tokos

A

pet can feel like another child in your home. It has a schedule, toys, food and health records that you have to maintain. Keeping its stuff organized can help minimize the risk of your pet taking over your time and space.

Playthings

Let’s start with the pet toys. Animals need to have fun, right? The unfortunate thing is that they don’t know how to clean up after themselves. The best way to organize their toys is to keep only the things that they love. Having a place to collect their toys in helps. A small basket on the floor works well so your pet can help itself to the fun.

Maintenance

When it comes to feeding your pet, having food near its dish is convenient. Large dogs will have large bags of food. This can be an eyesore, but a container can be the cure. There are many options, from a large plastic container to something more decorative. Work the dishes into your decor. Pick dish colors and mats that complement the room.

RecoRds

Pets – just like kids – need yearly checkups. Some vets will send you text reminders for regular medicines and checkups. To make licensing easier, keep the vet’s records together in a handy location. This will minimize your chances of paying a fine for missing the license renewal deadline.

KeeP the Kids involved

Parents’ willingness to have a pet is almost always dependent on the commitment of help that their children promise. Kids do need to be involved in the pet’s maintenance and clean-up. If you have multiple kids, you can assign each kid a week to take care of the pet and mark it on the calendar. Doing this per week is a bit easier to maintain.

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Leashes should be kept near their point of use. Install a hook or shelf near the door you walk in and out of with your pet. Featured metal hook, $12.99, at Bed, Bath & Beyond.

Chilewich cat mats, $35 each. The dog version is shaped like a bone. www.chilewich.com

Pedestal dog bowl by Unleashed Life. Solid wood base with stainless steel bowl. Available in three sizes. Large, shown, $65. www.wayfair.com


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We provide a safe, nurturing environment and stimulating, age-appropriate activities to keep your child happy and engaged.

For a registration form or questions, email discoverycorner@stpaulspapillion.org

or call 402.880.8103

Discovery Corner 324 S. Jackson Street, Papillion

Design Your Own CELEBRATIONS!

CELEBRATIONS!

Celebrate fun times with amazing events including: • Theme-based birthday parties with delightful dress-up costumes for both children and dogs • Interactive games and activities on-site at LeWonderment • Scenic carriage rides through the Old Market • Delicious desserts across the street at Spaghetti Works. LeWonderment CELEBRATIONS! is the Ultimate Destination for Creative Play! Pretend play is the way children develop imagination Call TODAY and creative thinking skills; it brings to plan your the world down to a child’s size and CELEBRATIONS! understanding… Coming this Spring to the Old Market!

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PhotoS by ChriS ChriSten

Chore Charts

System minimizes arguments; teaches kids the value of money

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By Amy lamAr

oys, privacy, attention – these are normal things for kids to fight about. But a shower? That’s what my kids recently argued over. You see, the kids have their own shower. It’s bigger than the shower my husband and I use. It has a tub, and there aren’t razors, shaving cream and three types of shampoo crowding it. Yet, Zoey, 8, and Elliot, 5½, were arguing about it on a nightly basis. Now the kids take turns using our shower. They also take turns feeding the fish, setting the table and vacuuming the kitchen, thanks to a chore chart system that a friend of mine found on Pinterest. The best part about this system is that you can customize it with

HOW THE SySTEm WOrKS Zoey and Elliot each have three small buckets on top of the fridge labeled “spend,” “save” and “give.” They receive $1 in each bucket each week if they have completed all of their chores. The kids add their allowance to their own buckets each week. This reinforces the concepts of spending, saving and giving. The “save” money is deposited into the kids’ savings accounts each week. The “give” money is Zoey and Elliot’s tithing for church every Sunday. The “spend” money is for items the kids can buy themselves. The “spend” category requires a little patience on your shopping trips. Be prepared to say “You don’t have enough money” at least 20 times when your child wants to buy several $30 items with a fist full of six crumpled $1 bills. My son lost his allowance two weeks in a row, which recently gave me the opportunity to also tell him, “You could have had enough money for that” and “Your sister has enough money to buy that.” Be prepared for your child to change his mind at least three times when he finally finds something that he can afford. Insist that he handle the transaction at the checkout himself, and teach him how to read the receipt.

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your own family’s arguments. Better yet – take chores straight off Mom’s to-do list. I have room to list eight chores on each child’s chart. The chores include things that I am tired of doing. I am tired of cleaning up their bathroom. I am tired of hanging up their towels. And I am especially tired of washing clothes that aren’t dirty. What if they refuse or complain about doing a chore? The child receives a check mark at the bottom of his or her chart. If they receive three or more checks in one week, they lose their allowance but still have to do all of their chores.

Charts easily show kids how they contribute to the family. Chore sticks are an effective replacement for time-outs.

Filling a bucket with rewards can be an alternative to an allowance.


     

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Advice

‘Odor-Whelming’ Conversation Dear Sassy Housewife, I’m embarrassed to be writing this, but I love the advice you give people. My 11-year-old daughter was pulled aside by her teacher yesterday and was talked to about body odor. The teacher advised my daughter to start using deodorant. My daughter was mortified and didn’t want to go to school this morning. I’m embarrassed that I didn’t notice, and can only imagine what the teacher must think of me. How should I approach things with my daughter and her teacher? - One Odor-Oblivious Mom Dear Oblivious, The same thing happened to me when I was a preteen. My eighth-grade teacher was talking to the class about changes to adolescent bodies, and she handed out an informational sheet with tips on how to take care of your changing body. When she got to me, she quickly circled the phrase, “Use deodorant twice each day.� I cried that night. When I woke up the next morning, I’m pretty sure that I smelled like a newborn baby since I had covered myself in baby powder-scented deodorant. And by covered, I mean that I used it under my arms, behind my ears, under my knees, on my feet – you get the idea. The funny thing is that still to this day, I use an excessive amount of deodorant – though I have limited it to just my underarms. It was getting pricey to cover all of the body parts that might potentially sweat. Don’t worry about your daughter. It sounds like the

Y! THE ENTIRE FAMIL E U G E N E T. M A H O N E Y S TAT E PA R K

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teacher did it in private and didn’t cause her any embarrassment in front of her friends. That would have been a MAJOR catastrophe in the life of a preteen. However, I would talk to your daughter about the changes happening to her body, and maybe invest in a book that can help with this process. There are some great ones out there that can help you talk to your preteen on her level about what’s happening at this point in her life. At this age, a new thing embarrasses preteens every day. Be prepared though: This could be because you kissed her goodbye in public, or because you simply got out of the car at school pick-up. As for the teacher, I think a nice thing to do to break the ice and ease your embarrassment would be to send her a note or email thanking her for looking out for your child. As a former teacher, I promise you that she isn’t judging you for this. Teachers know that parents might not see all the things that they see during the day. Remember, they are the ones smelling kids after gym class. In my opinion, they should receive a daily thank you from parents just for that!

Sassy Housewife Danielle Herzog is a married mother of two. She is a former middle and high school teacher, and served as a student counseling adviser in the Washington, D.C., area prior to moving to Omaha. She currently is pursuing a master’s degree in counseling.

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FUN FOR

Enjoy an indoor theater with live performances, horseback trail rides, arts and cras, miniature golf, driving range, lodge rooms, cabins and camping, hiking, indoor acvity center and much more!! (Park Entry Permit Required)

www.OutdoorNebraska.org RESERVE YOUR CHILD’S BIRTHDAY At the indoor playground, call for details Mahoney Grill PARTY 402.944.2523 Ext. 7122 Open Daily 2 8 5 0 0

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THE BEST PLACE FOR KIDS.

 

Visit ChildrensOmaha.org for more information on how we can help your child. For a pediatrician, family physician or pediatric specialist, call 1.800.833.3100.


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FREE CONCERTS EVERY FRIDAY NIGHT Now through August 30, 6:30-8:30PM, Alegent Creighton Health Amphitheatre

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More than 70 stores, services and restaurants Highway 370 & 72nd Street, Papillion 402.537.0046 Mon-Sat 10-9, Sun 12-6 ShadowLakeShopping.com


Momaha Magazine - June 2013