Community At Your Finger Tips - Sugar Land
Celebrating Life and Teachings of MLK
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Quick guide to Inauguration Day
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The List Hazel by Pink Owl Studios
Top 10 Things to do in January
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Savoring Your Mornings: The Many Faces of Coffee
Three Nurses Honored with Gold Award
Top 10 Things todo in January with Auntie A
Money Mat ters
6 Tips on Filing your Income Tax
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January 29th - 1 until 5pm - University of Houston Sugar Land
2017 Memorial Hermann Marathon - 14000 University Blvd
Marathon, half marathon & 5K. Benefitting the Fort Bend Education Foundation. For more information visit www.usafitmarathon.com January 28 & 29 - 9,10am until 6pm - Stafford Centre
Sugar Land Home and Garden Show - 10505 Cash Road Stafford, TX
7th Annual Sugar Land Home and Garden Show. Tickets: Adults $9, Seniors $8, Children 12 and under Free February 9th - 6:30 until 11pm - Stafford Centre
Girlfriends Giggle - 10505 Cash Road Stafford, TX
The pajama party for grown up girls. Benefitting the Fort Bend Women’s Center. For more information visit https://giggle2017.eventbrite.com/ February 10th - 7pm until 10pm - Sugar Land Marriot
Daddy’s Girl Dance Circus Soiree-16090 City Walk Sugar Land, TX Games, Dancing, Entertainment, and more! For more information visit daddyslittlegirldance.com
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Savoring Your Mornings: The Many Faces of Coffee
have a confession: I’m a coffee addict. A lot of Americans are. We drink coffee the way Brits consume tea with glee. Our society cannot function properly without this elixir. In appreciation of our favorite brew, George Ranch Historical Park is hosting “The Many Faces of Coffee,” an event that examines the history of coffee with an academic seriousness that will make a Rice University professor’s heart skip. Participants will also learn about the intricacies of coffee production and the various substitutes used when those precious coffee beans were unavailable. You’ll be surprised at how far people will go to get a cup of Joe, even using rice as a make-believe replacement. Although native to Africa, Coffea plants were quickly transplanted across the globe like pollen. The evolution of coffee from a local African drink to a major commodity is quite fascinating. At the “Many Faces of Coffee,” audiences will retrace this narrative and how it intertwines with colonialism, trade, wars and culture. In a sense, the history of coffee parallels with the story of
By Michael Miraflores
our civilization’s growth. The event at George Ranch Historical Park presents all the juicy historical details with enthusiasm that’ll leave the participants entertained, but also well-informed. The event is included in the general admission to George Ranch Historical Park, so you can make it a point in your itinerary to cross out while you explore the entire ranch. BYOC (Bring Your Own Coffee) encouraged.
When: Saturday, Jan 21st, 2017 Where: George Ranch Historical Park 10215 FM 762, Richmond, TX Cost: Included with general admission. www.georgeranch.org/event-calendar/ many-faces-coffee/
Celebrating the Life and Teachings of MLK On January 15, we will celebrate the life and teachings Martin Luther King, Jr. More than just a reverend, the brilliant and fiery orator is considered one of the most influential figures of the 20th century. Dr. King not only fought for the rights of African-Americans at a time when they were oppressed, he also championed the causes of the poor: janitors, single mothers, other minority groups and even impoverished whites. In fact, one of the last things MLK did before being assassinated in Memphis, in 1968, was co-organize the Poor People’s Campaign, which was to highlight the plight of American citizens living below the poverty line, both black and white. The curse of being an iconic figure is that you become iconic, meaning you become a sort of symbol to people, no longer seen as a human being. Today, Dr. King is associated with the Civil Rights era, famous inspiring
speeches, and grassroots activism. However, he was a highly controversial figure in his time and was even monitored by the U.S. government. This Martin Luther King Day, we should examine the life of this complicated but highly-accomplished man to better understand him. Even if you didn’t agree with some of his political ideologies, his teachings through his sermons and writings is worth studying. Christians can find a wealth of wisdom from this brilliant Bible scholar and theologian. Dr. King was actually a conservative and would have been a great role model for traditional Republicans. Political activists can learn a lot from his socialist ideas about helping the poor and disadvantaged. Students can follow his example of being a model citizen and treating your peers with respect. Regardless of your race, class, religion or political leaning, people today can find gems from Dr. King’s teachings.
Although Fort Bend County doesn’t officially have a parade scheduled for MLK Day, citizens can go to nearby Houston, where a grand parade is planned for January 16. The parade will begin at 10:00 AM, on San Jacinto Street & Elgin Street.
Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. -Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. January 2017
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Three Nurses from Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital Honored with Gold Award
ouston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital nurses Allison Damron, MSN, RN, ACNPBC, Elizabeth Gonzales, DNP, RN, ACNP-BC, CCRN, and Amy SebastianDeutsch, DNP, RN, CNS, AOCNS, have been named Gold Award winners in the 12th Annual Good Samaritan Foundation’s Excellence in Nursing Awards. Damron was honored in the category of Clinical Practice in a Small Hospital. Inspired to become a nurse by encouragement from her mother, she was nominated by her director after working to ensure that a patient’s husband was able to receive medical care and remain by his dying wife’s side. “To me, that felt simple and just part of my job,” Damron said. “As nurse practitioners, we have a really big impact on families and patients every single day even if it’s in small ways that may we not notice.” Gonzales was nominated in the
category of Nursing Administration and Leadership. Her colleagues recognized her not only for her dedication to the administrative aspect of her role and to the leadership and development of her team members, but also for her passion for going above and beyond to develop relationships with patients and families. “I’m still a clinician at heart,” she said. “I love taking care of patients. Yet, I understand and appreciate the administrative role; I feel that we need to have very strong leadership in the health care arena and the only way to do that is to dive in and take on some of the issues that are in health care today.” Sebastian-Deutsch was awarded in the category of Non-Hospital Based Care. Honored for her expertise and her passion to make a difference for oncology patients, she seizes the opportunity to be a mentor to other nurses and to create new tools to share her knowledge with patients. “I am humbled to receive an award for doing
something I am so passionate about,” she said. “God has been very good to me in allowing me to couple my clinical expertise with my administrative interests.” “I want to congratulate each of these excellent nurses,” said Janet Leatherwood, Chief Nursing Officer. “These women exemplify the quality care and expertise that Houston Methodist Sugar Land is known for, and they are incredibly deserving of this recognition and appreciation.” The Good Samaritan Foundation Excellence in Nursing Awards recognizes nurse leaders offering extraordinary and compassionate care and service, who are nominated by their peers for their passion, leadership, mentorship and service to the Houston community. The Good Samaritan Foundation encourages nursing excellence through a variety of supported programs from education to practice. For more information about Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital, visit houstonmethodist.org/ sugarland or call 281.274.7500 for a physician referral. Visit our Facebook page at fb.com/methodistsugarland for the latest news, events and information.
Photo: Allison Damron, MSN, RN, ACNP-BC, Elizabeth Gonzales, DNP, RN, ACNP-BC, CCRN, and Amy Sebastian-Deutsch, DNP, RN, CNS, AOCNS January 2017
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A Quick Guide to Inauguration Day
ith the Presidential Election behind us the next event on our minds is Inauguration Day. On January 20th, we will have a new president, and Inauguration Day is sure to be as entertaining as Donald J. Trump. Make sure you donâ€™t miss this momentous event, which is guaranteed to have a lot of YouTubeworthy moments. The inauguration is planned by the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies and the 2017 Presidential Inaugural Committee. It is this ceremony that marks the commencement of a new four year term of a president of the United States. If you plan on taking the trip up to Washington, D.C. to see the inauguration in person, be aware of the understandably tight security presence. The event will start a little past noon on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol. Vice President-elect Mike Pence and President-elect
By Michael Miraflores
Donald Trump will take the Oaths of Office before the inaugural address. A grand parade along Pennsylvania Avenue will follow the inaugural address. Be aware that due to the contentious nature of this election, there will be protests held by various political groups and activists in general. A Bikers for Trump rally has also been granted permit, and could lead to intense situations between pro- and anti-Trump protesters despite the high-level security. So keep this in mind if youâ€™re planning to attend the ceremony. In the evening, inaugural balls will be held by various organizations, such as the Republican Party and press committees. The tickets are free since the inauguration is officially a public event paid for by taxpayers. However, you might be out of luck in snagging one since they are in
high demand. You cannot watch the swearing-in-ceremony unless you have a ticket. Most Americans will be watching from their living room or smartphone and tablets. The event will be covered by almost all of the major news networks, so it will be hard for you to miss it, even if you wanted to. The event will also be livestreamed on YouTube and probably Facebook as well. So if youâ€™re stuck in traffic or waiting at the airport, you can watch the inauguration from your smartphone, tablet or laptop. Keeping safety first in mind. Whether you voted for the presidentelect or not, this is an important ceremony for all Americans to witness and will be a historic event. Be sure to make some time in your day to watch it, even if not for the inauguration itself, but to see our cherished democracy in action.
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Houston Methodist Primary Care Group is dedicated to providing high-quality and compassionate care to the Fort Bend community. Our physicians have extensive training and experience in diagnosing and treating patients with a caring, hands-on, family-oriented approach. • Accepts most major insurance plans • Patient portal for secure • Convenient locations communication with your care team • Easy online scheduling • Same day appointments Schedule online at houstonmethodist.org/appointments or call 713.394.6638.
Top 10 Things to do in January It’s been a whirl! Start off the year right by booking a Spa day for you and a friend and while you are getting your nails done share your goals for this new year. Making someone aware of your aspirations tends to keep us better accountable for completing them.
with Auntie A
you can dedicate to your health and stick to it! 7. Schedule dental visits and cleanings for you and the children. Also check to see if the dogs and cats need bathing to keep their winter coats at bay. 8. Make a large batch of homemade candy and bag up into little heart bags for Valentines Giving! Drop off a tray to the nursing home and a few valentines cards for the Young at Heart to enjoy during the season of LOVE.
2. Take all the curtains down and either wash them or take to laundry for cleaning. It’s time to start getting everything ready for spring!. 3. On my nightside table… ”The Untethered Soul” by Michael A. Singer and The Road to Character” by David Brooks
9. Schedule a “Sexy Cat Boudior” session for your husband and surprise him with a “for his eyes only” gift! Hint: www.alisamurray.com
4. Start looking at vacation deals for Spring break with the kiddos. There’s ton of fun and educational places to go right here in the state of Texas! 5. Order seeds and begin planning your spring garden. Pull all the fall harvest in and can or freeze your collards, cabbages and late tomatoes to use until the spring garden blooms and delivers.
and show them how their lives can be enriched by something that does NOT involve a computer!
10. Go take the children to the museum and dedicate each quarter this year educating them in the arts. Plan a visit each month to ether the ballet, the museum or a concert
6. Make an appointment with a personal trainer and set your fitness goals for the year. Find a commitable time that
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Auntie A’s Hearts on Fire Valentines CANDY 3 3/4 c sugar 1 1/4 c light karo syrup 1 c water 1 tsp. Cinnanmon Flavoring
sheet and allow to cool completely.
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6 Tips on Filing Your Income Tax
t’s our favorite time of the year. Just kidding. It’s our least favorite time of the year: tax season. The Internal Revenue Service stated that tax season will begin on Monday, Jan. 23, 2017. As a cherry on top, they reminded taxpayers to expect a longer wait for refunds on certain tax credits. I wonder if they chose a Monday just to troll us. In any case, it’ll be a long day in front of your computer typing away on TurboTax, with a stack of financial documents flanking you on both sides. Here are some tips that will make the process go a whole lot smoother, along with some pointers on how to milk every cent out of that tax return. 1. Review Your Previous Year’s Returns Unless you won the lottery or filed for bankruptcy within the last year, it’s unlikely that your current financial status has changed that much. With that said, you’ll probably end up filling in the same information as you did in your last tax return. Save yourself some time and whip out your tax returns from
By Michael Miraflores
the previous year. It’s like copying the answers from your old quiz when taking the semester exam, except the IRS won’t penalize you for copying. 2. Deduct Your Medical Expenses There are certain medical expenses that you can deduct, such as diagnosis, check-ups, and treatments. The same goes for laboratory works you had done and dental visits. You can also deduct certain premium services from your health insurance. Make sure to gather all your relevant medical and dental information before filing your taxes. That way, you can blaze through it in one sitting. 3. Deduct Your Charitable Donations You gave more than you received throughout the year. Now, it’s time for you to reap the rewards of all that good karma. First, itemize your deductions on all your contributions to charity. If you’ve made cash donations that exceed $250, then you should have a receipt filed away. Likewise, non-cash donations over $500 should have a receipt. However,
keep in mind that any rewards you received for contributing to charity— like, say, free tickets to a baseball game—will prevent you from deducting the total amount of your donation. 4. Political Donations are NonDeductible Last year was an election year and if you donated to your preferred candidate, you might be thinking of deducting the amount you contributed. Bad news: you can’t. This is because donating to political campaigns or organizations do not count as “charitable contribution.” 5. Transfer Your Unused Credits. If you’re married, you can transfer tax credits to your spouse. For example, certain credits for students, like tuition credits, can be transferred to your spouse and vice-versa. In fact, student credits can even be transferred to parents and grandparents after the credits have been used to decrease the student’s tax payable to zero. 6. Pros and Cons of Online Tax Filing Programs Online tax filing programs such as TurboTax and TaxAct are great for students, seniors and those who do not have complicated financial life. These types of programs are user-friendly, sleek and use all sorts of algorithms to cater to your specific profile. For instance, if you’re a student, TurboTax will find relevant deductibles for you. However, if you work a part-time job, do freelance work on the side, and have a registered LLC (like a simple online shop where you sell your handicrafts), then you might want to seek a professional’s assistance. There are many reputable accountants in the Fort Bend area who can help you sort out your tax documents and save you from a headache or two. January 2017
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complex neurological conditions — treated in sugar land. At the Neuroscience & Spine Center at Houston Methodist Sugar Land Hospital, our physicians collaborate across specialties to diagnose and treat common to complex neurological disorders. With innovative and advanced treatment options, we provide the most comprehensive care close to home. Our team of physicians treats a variety of disorders, including • Alzheimer’s disease and memory disorders • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) • Back and neck pain • Brain and spinal tumors • Epilepsy and seizures • Headaches and migraines • Multiple sclerosis (MS) • Muscle and nerve injuries
• Muscular atrophy • Myasthenia gravis • Neuromuscular disorders • Parkinson’s disease and movement disorders • Peripheral neuropathy • Sleep disorders • Stroke
For more information, visit houstonmethodist.org/sugarland-neuro, or to schedule an appointment, call 281.274.7979.