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southernchild magazine | April 2012


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southernchild magazine | April 2012


contents |

southernchild april 2012

a stroll to the mailbox

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publisher’s note

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editor’s note

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childen in waiting

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Inspiring Life

“…if that little weed innately was of enough value just by the sheer virtue of being created by God that He had taken the time to adorn it with such detail…than how much more does He value you and I?”

An excerpt from “Caffeine & Grace” pg.

Volunteering

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Adoption Story

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Super Southern Mom

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Super Southern Child

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MamaRazzi

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Heart & Home

the cover Courtesy of Sutherland Hill Farms Photography, Luci, 5, after enjoying a Springtime tea party ponders her next great adventure!

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southernchild magazine | April 2012

Grace and Caffeine

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The Journey Ahead

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Stuff We Love

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Coupon Epiphanies

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contents

{more}

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When you see {more} in any article, that means you’ll find more on this topic on our website! We’re excited to bring you {more} Southern Child Magazine!

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s pri ng fash i o n pre v ie w

{freshly:picked}

Spring Cleaning Tips Southern Style

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Spring Fashion Preview {freshly picked}

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Design Spotlight: Tutu That*

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DIY Easter Topiaries

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P is for Party A Boy’s Easter Garden Party Homemade Scholar

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Green Homeschooling

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Family Travel Build an adventure at Lego Land Florida


southernchild magazine

A Stroll to

theMailbox

Publisher: Amy Shepherd Editor: Kelly Keefe

Dear Staff at Southern Child Magazine,

Contributing Writers

We wanted to share the great news that Deryck has been placed in his adoptive home. Deryck was featured in your magazine as a waiting child. Thank you so much for your help in finding a family for this special child.

Tricia K. Lee

Sara Tusant

Krista Sutherland

Dr. Julie Delello

Gaby Cisneros

Donna McInvale

Talia Rogers

Ashley Vanlandeghem

Copyright © 2012 Melamy Publishing|Southern Child Magazine All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.

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southernchild magazine | April 2012

The staff at The Adoption Exchange

This comment came from our website: “After reading your ‘About Us’ on section on your website I looked up the local agency that handles foster/adoptions in our province. I had just recovered from extreme crying over the story when I realized it is Friday after 5. The tears are flowing again because I have to wait! I only hope the weekend will be enough time to convince my husband we need to adopt one of these precious children. Ours are all grown up, but I think we’re up for another round. Thank you for all you do Amy & Kelly! To God be the glory!” -Sandi


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From the Publisher Nuclear Explosions I wasn’t sure where this call was going to go, it started off by the caller letting me know that someone else called her because of things I say and do. Oh great, here we go again I thought, I was going to hear, “Amy, I know you are passionate about such and such but maybe you just shouldn’t...” In all actuality, God and I had already been discussing delivery lately so I was prepared for this. I have been working really hard to put my passion out there in a love tone as opposed to a condescending noise. Suddenly the call took a turn I didn’t expect as my mom said, “Aunt Dianne said that when you are on a mission you go full force and she wants you to speak out about these nuclear power plants.” I picked my jaw up off the floor and decided to do some research. My husband stays on top of world event so I asked him. Again, I got a suprise by his explaination. His thoughts are they are beneficial when run properly, it’s when disaster strikes that they become deadly. And he gave me examples and really put me on the fence. So I began to pray. This year I decided to teach my children one verse of scripture a week to memorize. Here we are eight weeks in the the new year and we are STILL on the first verse! The fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control.” Galatians 5:22-23. We memorized the verse alright, it’s just practicing it that we are having a time with. Just last night my younger son disturbed my older son’s Legos, again...my self control must have slipped out the window as I picked up what I refered to as ‘silly little pieces of plastic’ and ‘lost it’! This morning God reminded me that He has given us the fruit of self control yet when disaster strikes, if we don’t use the safty measures He has provided, the results are becoming perhaps more deadly than the nuclear plants will ever have potential to be. So I will continue to pray God’s will for the nuclear plants and more importantly I will seek ways to help my children enjoy the lucious fruits of the Spirit, to put out little fires before they have the potential to blaze out of control. In honor of the One who loved us enough to give His life so that we may have life everlasting. Southernly yours,

Amy

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FROM OUR SOCIAL SCENE Use your talent & give your time. The reward is Have a yard sale and priceless! Help out at your local donate the profits to a children’s home.

animal shelter. Walk or wash dogs!

Serve in your church.

Collect items needed at the Mission. Call, there is usually a list.

We asked...

Volunteer ideas, anyone?

Collect clothes for victims of house fires.

Foster a dog! Who knows, you might just fall in love!

Teach someone else a skill you have. Pass it on!

Donate canned goods to a food Get a group pantry. together to clean up

connect with us southernchild magazine | April 2012

to someone.

We visit the nursing home and sing or do crafts with the residents. Connects the kids & elderly!

Reach out to the homeless.

the playground.

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READ


From the Editor

As much as I love the winter time, a season of rest and regeneration, I long for the Spring time breezes, signs of new life and those first tiny flowers that make their appearance, adorn my yard in bright yellow and set my little girls into a flutter of fantasy. Earlier this year, yes, in the midst of our Florida winter, my daughters (7 & 4) and I created a fairy garden. We chose pink, tin buckets, pretty rocks and jewels and filled it with Ivy and flowering grasses to make a haven for the magical beings that would visit in the night and leave their tiny footprints. Those “fairy footprints”, yes, the flowers, helped me teach my children that no matter how small they are, they can leave a beautiful mark in this world and more importantly, that they have a purpose. Sadly, there are children who will never experience moments like these. Each year more than 20,000 children age out of the foster care without being adopted. This issue of Southern Child features several older children who are waiting to find their forever families. My heart broke while reading their bios because the statistics show that sixty five percent (65%) of youth leaving foster care do so without a place to live. Up to 50% of former foster youth become homeless within the first 18 months of emancipation.Twenty seven percent (27%) of the homeless population spent time in foster care. Fifty-eight percent (58%) of all young adults accessing federally funded youth shelters in 1997 had previously been in foster care. Less than half of former foster youth are employed 2.5-4 years after leaving foster care, and only 38% have maintained employment for at least one year. Youth in foster care are 44% less likely to graduate from high school and after emancipation, 40 – 50 percent never complete high school. Girls in foster care are six times more likely to give birth before the age of 21 than the general population. Sixty percent (60%) of women who emancipate from foster care become parents within 2.5-4 years after exiting care. It is my prayer that as you grace the pages of these beautiful children’s pictures you will see the son or daughter God is calling you to love. In His grace

Kelly

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Do you believe in Second Chances? Meet Ruth. Found in a trashcan protecting her two puppies, Ruth is just one of the thousands of abused, homeless or neglected animals that have found a second chance at life at Alaqua Animal Refuge. Located down a winding road, lined by mosscovered trees, Alaqua Animal Refuge is nestled on the banks of a tranquil Northwest Florida bayou. This peaceful location in Freeport is actually just minutes from the nationally known beach haven of Destin, but it is figuratively far removed from the concept of a traditional shelter. It is a true refuge. Founded in 2007 due to the lack of a no-kill shelter/adoption organization in the area, Alaqua Animal Refuge has helped find homes

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for more than 7,000 animals - from dogs to cats to rabbits to horses, to pigs, and even a monitor lizard and a sugar glider. Up to 100 animals are adopted each month from this unique refuge, which serves as a shelter for more than 250 animals at any given time. To continue to save the lives of animals like Ruth, Alaqua Animal Refuge needs your help. Please join us in our mission by adopting a rescued pet or making a tax-deductible donation, today. If you believe in second chances, visit our refuge or go to AARFlorida.com to learn how you can support Alaqua Animal Refuge or to find out about the hundreds of animals that are looking for a forever home.

914 Whit)ield  Road  |  Freeport,  Fla.  32439  |  (850)  880-­‐6399  |  AARFlorida.com southernchild magazine | April 2012

Photo by  www.JoyJill.com.


Children in Waiting

Photo by Zachary Thomas

What could be more disheartening for a teenager than to be in foster care? During the years that should be the most special and memorable, Robert has to worry about whether he will ever be adopted.

Robert

Robert is an active boy who loves music, playing video games and swimming — and he’s pretty good at playing basketball, too! Robert, who is a natural follower, is sweet, kind and unassuming preferring a two-parent household with pets. Robert is ready to find a fabulous family — one who will step up and complete his life with the most special memory of all, adoption. Profiles of Waiting Children provided by Family Support Services of North Florida’s Heart Gallery, heartgalleryjax.org.

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Children in Waiting

Lyzmarie Lyzmarie is a lively teen with a beautiful smile and a big heart. From her love of animals to cheerleading, Lyzmarie’s positive energy and spirit shine through. Academically, she is a very good student—excelling in math—as well as having the honor of being on the yearbook staff. She plans to go to college and obtain a degree in education so she can teach math. More than anything, Lyzmarie wants a loving family who will be there for her—supporting her dreams through high school and beyond. Photo by Laura Evans.

Matthew One day, Matthew might be the mechanic you call on at the car repair shop. He would be good at it, too, because he likes anything to do with cars and sees himself working on them when he grows up. For now, Matthew collects toy cars and enjoys riding his bike. But that’s all in preparation for the day when he will own his own car. Similar to many children, Matthew can be both quiet and outgoing, and he’s thought of as a smart young man doing fine in school — Math, in particular. Today, the driving force in Matthew’s life is to find a two-parent family where he can be an only child and receive the love, care and attention a sensitive boy deserves. Photo by Laura Evans.

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Children in Waiting

James If you’re an outdoor enthusiast, then James is a natural fit for your family! From fishing to riding bikes and even horses, James loves being outside with friends, family and nature. James is a polite, inquisitive young man who has a beautiful smile. He’s doing well in school — working hard on improving his reading skills while excelling in math. It’s time for James to experience goodness from of a forever family. Maybe you can open your heart and home to this sweet boy? Photo by Rick Testasecca.

Leah Leah has a positive outlook and likes to see “the glass is half full” — even though life hasn’t always been that way. During her years in foster care, Leah has experienced a lot of emotions about the prospect of being adopted. For the most part, her outlook has held true to her values by keeping her eye and her hope on finding a forever family. Leah is a nice girl who has experienced difficulties with the adults in her life. Now, she’s ready to embrace the future and experience a new chapter in her life book. Photo by Suvarna Shah.

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April

Age 16

To learn more about April or other waiting children like her, please contact The Adoption Exchange 800-451-5246 www.adoptex.org

In the tenth grade, April delights in school and socializing. Music, art and physical education are her favorite subjects, and math is her least favorite. As a hard worker, this student tries to do her best. She benefits from an IEP (Individualized Education Plan) and counseling, which will need to continue after placement. The caseworker prefers a two-parent or single-mother family with female siblings; however, all family types will be considered. She is eager to find a forever family who will stick by her through it all. April has biological family members with whom she would like to maintain contact. Financial assistance may be available for adoption-related services. For Missouri children, both homestudied and non-homestudied families from all states are encouraged to inquire. Child ID 9519

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Patrick, age 11 Colorado

Meet Patrick, a likable kid enthusiastic about all kinds of activities, especially music, art and puzzles. Always eager to make new friends, Patrick makes a point to say hello to everyone with a big smile on his face. A very social child, getting to know new people is number one on his list and he enjoys interactions with others. He would benefit from a structured environment where he gets a lot of attention. Patrick is very smart and enjoys the fourth grade. Reading is one way he excels in the classroom. Although he may not be able to live independently as an adult, he can have a great life. He benefits from counseling, which will need to continue after placement. It is important to Patrick that his forever family support contact with his grandmother. His caseworker will consider all family types for this deserving boy. Financial assistance may be available for adoption-related services. For Colorado children, both homestudied and non-homestudied Colorado families are encouraged to inquire; only homestudied families from other states should do so. Child ID 8734 For more information about Patrick or other waiting children like him, please contact The Adoption Exchange at 800-451-5246 or visit our website at www.adoptex.org. 15

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Inspiring Life 17

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INSPIRING LIFE

Give Kids the World

THE STORY OF Give Kids The World begins with a little girl with a wish and the desire of one man to make that wish come true. The little girl’s name was Amy. Amy had leukemia and one wish - to visit the theme parks in Orlando. To facilitate Amy’s wish, the request of a complimentary stay was made to a respected hotelier. As he had done many times before, the hotelier gladly obliged and Amy’s wish was that much closer to being realized. Sadly, the remainder of Amy’s travel plans took too long to arrange and her wish was never granted; Amy had passed away. Time simply ran out. This unfulfilled wish inspired a man, the hotelier, to make a vow that no child in need would ever be failed again. That man was Henri Landwirth and his desire to ensure that Amy’s story would never repeat itself is where the story of Give Kids The World begins. Landwirth enlisted the support of colleagues in the hospitality industry, including our world-famous theme parks, to assist him in bringing these special families to Central Florida within 24 hours if need be. He called the project “Give Kids The World,” because that is just what he intended to do - provide memorable, magical, costfree experiences to children with life-threatening illnesses and their families. As the program expanded and the number of families continued to grow, it was apparent that Give Kids The World would need to create a place that could better 18

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serve the special needs of our families. The gates of Give Kids The World Village opened in 1989. Today the Village is a 70-acre resort complete with over 140 Villa accommodations, entertainment attractions, whimsical venues, and fun specifically designed for children with special needs. With the help of many generous individuals, corporations and partnering wish-granting organizations, Give Kids The World has welcomed more than 115,000 families from all 50 states and over 70 countries. GKTW welcomes you and your family to volunteer next time you visit Disney! For details, visit www.GiveKidstheWorld.org. Inspiration comes in many shapes and forms. Here at Give Kids The World, inspiration comes in the form of the children and their families who heroically face the unthinkable challenges of life-threatening illnesses with strength, courage, and hope. Give Kids The World exists solely to fulfill the wishes of these special children and their families, providing them a magical, memorable experience that will live in their hearts for years to come. Upholding this mission requires the tremendous collaboration of many individuals, organizations, and corporations.

www.givekidstheworld.org


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INSPIRING LIFE

Little Dresses for Africa LITTLE DRESSES FOR AFRICA is a non-profit 501c3, Christian organization, which provides relief to the children of Africa. Simple dresses are made out of pillow cases, and distributed through the orphanages, churches and schools in Africa to plant in the hearts of little girls that they are worthy! Knowing the history of the girls in Africa and the difficult road that lay ahead, a traveler decided she would take back some dresses to the children in the villages. A small group of ladies began to sew simple little dresses, made out of pillowcases, to be distributed to young girls through the orphanages in Africa. This was only the beginning. It continues to grow as groups of all sizes spring up across America. These groups cross age, gender and denominational lines, to serve the most vulnerable of God’s children: little girls. To date we have received dresses and donations from all 50 states across the USA and received well over 560,000 little dresses, that have been distributed in 31 countries of Africa! We are happy to partner with mission teams and travelers to get these dresses to the children who need them most. One generous supporter, 20

Nancy’s Notions, has sent over 65,000 for us internationally. We are so grateful. We have also sent dresses to countries in crisis, when requested, such as Honduras, Guatamala, Philippines, Cambodia, Mexico and thousands and thousands to Haiti. In addition, we have sent dresses to children in need right here in the United States, in the Appalachian Mountains and South Dakota. But more importantly than how many have been shipped, are the lives that they have touched. These dresses (and now also britches for boys!) go out as little Ambassadors in the name of Jesus, to give hope to the children that receive them. With Little Dresses for Africa there are many ways to provide help…from starting or hosting your own sewing group, sizing and packing little dresses, or donating financially toward shipping costs, such as boxes, tape, postage. To ensure that they actually get to the children, the majority of our dresses are sent with mission teams here in the United States, as they travel on their missions, for personal distribution. We are always very much need mission teams to agree to take the little dresses with them to distribute, so if you have a team going, please let us know. Due to the overwhelm-

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ing generosity of so many, we can generally send you as many as you are able to take. (Please go to “contact us” for the necessary form). We also mail them internationally. The highlight of our year is when we take a team from the USA, to deliver the little dresses personally, to the grateful and excited little girls that need them so desperately. Our job is not complete until these little dresses are actually on the backs of the little girls that need them. Please enclose your tax-deductible donation to help with shipping whenever possible. It costs an average of about $2.00/dress to get the dresses to the children. Any amount you can send helps, although it is not required. Thank you in advance for your help! Simple patterns are downloadable at www.LittleDressesofAfrica.org or feel free to use your own pattern, if you prefer.

Making a difference, here and across the ocean, one little dress at a time!


INSPIRING LIFE

“We’re not just sending dresses, we’re sending hope!”

Top: The image caption on the organization’s Facebook page reads, “And this is why....” Bottom: Little girls show off their little dresses. 21

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INSPIRING LIFE

To get involved with Seasons of Hope, Inc. visit their website, www.seasonsofhopeinc.org Michael Harris 1205 Buena Vista Blvd Panama City, FL 32401 (850) 111-1111 mharris@seasonsofhopeinc.org

To everything there is a season... this organization brings a season of hope to those in need.

An Interview with Michael & Johnny Harris

Seasons of Hope, Inc. is a 501(c)3 organization and all contributions are tax deductable.

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FOR ABOUT SEVEN years Michael Harris has been instrumental in helping many disabled and sick children and adults improve their quality of life through hunting and fishing. His work began as a volunteer with Buckmasters and Way Outfitters, helping disabled Hunters, but three years ago, the tables turned and Michael was then the one in need. On March 30, 2009 in a freak accident while helping a friend, 23 sheets of plywood fell on Michael breaking his neck and rendering him a C5, C7 quadrapalegic. He has undergone a long hospital stay, many surgeries, rehab and therapy, but has not been slowed in his efforts to make a difference in other’s lives. Michael and the “team” at Seasons of Hope organize and take part in trips across the country. Though Michael’s own story has drawn National media attention, he is quick to say, “This is NOT about me. It takes our entire team, sponsors and volunteers to make all of this possible.”

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Season’s of Hope accepts applications for trips from anyone and works with organizations like Wounded Warriors and Soldier’s Angels to take vetrans on trips, as well. Monetary contributions and land use allowances are needed and are considered a charitable contribution on your taxes. The organization is also collecting airline travel miles as trips are available Nationwide and it helps offset the cost of the team’s or participant and their family’s travel. Find out more about Seasons of Hope and how to be involved by visiting their website and Facebook page. www.SeasonsOfHopeInc.org www.facebook.com/SeasonsOfHope Photo: Michael & son Brayden


Ways for Children to Volunteer Children of all ages can benefit from volunteering and giving back to the community. When we don’t give kids responsibilities, we pay the price. No parent dreams of their child becoming lazy and complacent and too selffocused. Volunteering and giving back are excellent preventative measures! Consider these age-appropriate volunteering activities your children can participate in. Ages 6–10 Keep it simple. Food banks are a great way for children to volunteer alongside their parents, they love to work with their hands, children can help parents or an older sibling organize food. Our church goes downtown one night a week to serve the homeless. Volunteers bring everything from covered dishes to drinks to napkins. My boys love to hand out drinks! Another idea is to take your children to a senior center. They can get to know people of another generation, read with them and hear their stories. They also can play simple board games or work on an arts and crafts projects together. Collaborate with other moms, if your children are taking various instrument lessons, set up a little concert for the seniors. We enjoy going to retirement homes at Christmas to sing Christmas carols with the residents and share baked goods. Also our home school group goes to a nursing home one time a month and the children assist the seniors in multiple Bingo games. They all love it! Prizes are typically a piece of candy. Ages 10–12 Children between the ages of 10 and 12 can take volunteering to the next level, ask your kids to think about how to improve the places they spend the most time—their neighborhood or their school. Have your children get together with their friends and organize a neighborhood or community cleanup day. With your help and the right kind of gear—gardening gloves, trash bags and rakes—children can pick up trash in a neglected lot, pick up fallen branches and sweep up a sidewalk. They will see a direct impact on an area that needed help and will feel so good about being a part! Ages 12–15 Children between the ages of 12 and 15 are typically good at a particular subject or have passionate interest in a certain area. If your child is talented in a specific subject, have her volunteer to tutor younger children who might be struggling. This will teach them about the fun involved with mentorship and will help them make friends in other grade levels. Let your friends know on Facebook that your son is available to teach tennis lessons or basketball lessons. I once read about a 12-year old girl that set up a cooking camp for younger children in her home one summer. I thought that was genius! Younger children thrive on time spent with ‘older’ friends, make it positive time. If your children are interested in pets, volunteering at a local animal shelter is another way for them to get involved. Many shelters let kids volunteer if parents come along. You and your child can take dogs for walks, play with cats and even ask friends and family members to donate warm blankets and pet toys for the animals at the shelter. Older Teens The service options for older teens are almost unlimited, this is a time for teens to focus on where their passions are and direct energy toward a charity or group whose cause excites them. Working in a homeless shelter and helping distribute meals or behind the scenes in the business office. Other ideas include volunteering for an adult literacy program or getting involved in or starting an environmental group. Send pictures of your volunteer in action to kelly@southernchildmagazine.com 23

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INSPIRING LIFE

Our Adoption Story by: Sara Tusant

WHEN I TELL people my testimony about how I am a foster mom who has adopted four children, I usually get some strange responses. Sometimes I hear some people say: “I have always wanted to foster and adopt a child,” or “I don’t think that I can have a child in my home and then watch them leave.” I can relate to these responses because I have experienced both of them. However, more often than not, I hear some truly sad statements about adoption. Statements like: “Wow! You’ve adopted, you did it the easy way,” and “At least you didn’t have to go through a pregnancy and hours and hours of labor.” Then, there’s one that always make me cringe: “I could never love someone else’s child.” Words like these make me feel sorry for the person speaking. The heart of adoption is something so great and grand, that I didn’t even fully understand it until I lost my son. It was July second and we went to a birthday party for a friend at a community pool. We enjoyed the day swimming with great friends. As the day progressed into 26

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evening, we began to pack up our stuff to go home. In the middle of packing, I noticed that my youngest, Solly, was not by my side like usual. We started to look for him. I wasn’t worried because he didn’t normally wander off. I also wasn’t worried about him returning to the pool because of all my children, Solly hated the water. He would only go in if we were holding him. But we couldn’t find him. Then the unthinkable happened. I look over to see my husband lift him out of the water. My first thought was: “What? Why would he be in the water? He hates it.” My second thought was: “Is he breathing?” I know CPR, but I panicked and forgot what to do. Thankfully, there was someone at the pool who knew but she didn’t have to do anything since he was breathing on his own. The ambulance came and took us to the local hospital and they immediately began to work on him. After a while, the doctor came out and told us that he saw all the good signs they see when children survive but they needed to transport him to the Children’s Hospital to re-


INSPIRING LIFE

ceive better care. They loaded us up in the care flight helicopter and we lifted off. Just as soon as we lifted up, we were on the ground again. I didn’t understand until I saw him being taken out of the helicopter while a nurse did chest compressions. My whole world felt like it was crashing down. I felt so alone. My husband was already on his way to the Children’s Hospital and I was trying to hold in the emotions that were flooding my heart. I prayed. I begged God not to take my son. When they allowed me back into his room, they told me that the water in his lungs was compressing his heart. When my husband got back to the hospital, they

heart and choose to love, you can never truly know or understand the love that our Lord Jesus has for us. He adopted us first so that we can be part of the family of God. In Romans 8:15, it says, “the spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him, we cry: Abba Father.” We are his children through adoption. He is our daddy. He doesn’t see us any differently. We have been grafted into the vine. For me, adoption hasn’t been the easy way and I have labored over my children for much more than nine months. I have experienced a terrible tragedy and our life is not the same, but I have also experienced and

In Romans 8:15, it says, “the spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him, we cry: Abba Father.” had already administered nine rounds of medicine to get his heart started up again. They told us that they could only do one more round. One more try. The medicine didn’t work. In a matter of seconds, my Solly was gone. Just like that. Gone. My heart was broken. Broken for my other children who had lost their brother, broken for the world that had lost a very bright child, broken for my family who had loved him from the beginning; but most of all, my heart was broken for the loss of my son. In the days and months which followed that night, the grief was overwhelming because I encountered even more sadness from words that people said. Words like: “Why are you grieving? It’s not like he was your own child,” and “It’s a good thing he wasn’t your real child.” Yes, there are many women who believe that they could never love a child who was not biologically related to them, but I believe that unless you can open your 27

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come to know true love. The kind of love that chooses. The kind of love that understands our Abba Daddy. The love of adoption. My husband and I were blessed with four children all from different times, circumstances and challenges from drug addiction to heart conditions and we have tried in our way to help them to overcome their struggles.

s

Left: This photoshoot was planned after the family because their son Gabriel was born with a very rare heart condition and the doctors had only given him a few months to live. Soloman died shortly after. This photograph has become a family treasure. Top Left: In the family’s pool. Top Right: Christmas 2009


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www.joovy.com

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INSPIRING LIFE

A Kidney for

Desty YOU CAN HARDLY TELL from the ever-beaming smile on her face that Desty Mathis, a 36 year old single mom, is in need of a lifesaving kidney transplant. Desty, the mother of a 17 year old son, Austin, has been fighting her life for most of his. In January of 1999 Desty was working as a Paraprofessional for special needs children. Her life was going great. She was married, had a new home and a beautiful four year old son. She was looking forward to having more children in the future and things could not be any better. They say life can change in an instant and in mid-January, if did for Desty. She contracted Scarlett Fever from an undiagnosed student in her class. Her symptoms were mild and it was quickly over, but little did she know this was only the beginning. In March of that year Desty began to notice some other, rather concerning signs that something was wrong in her body, bloody urine ranging in color from cherry Kool-Aid to Cherry Cola. She went to see a Urologist and after several rounds of antibiotics, there was no change. In late April her doctor shared his fears that he suspected kidney disease called Iga Nephropathy, and ordered a kidney biopsy. The biopsy confirmed the doctors suspicion and charted a course of action. The Doctor said that with a Gluten free diet, fish oil, and medication to maintain her blood pressure, the time until kidney failure could probably be extended for a few years. Desty did pretty well for about 6 years with regular visits to the Nephrologist and 30

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following his recommendations. In Spring of 2006 signs of kidney failure were appearing. Her arms, legs and face started swelling a lot, and she was experiencing severe fatigue which became almost unbearable at times. She had to give up her second job. By October of 2006 after a trip to the ER she was admitted to the hospital where they confirmed that she only had 8% kidney function. Surgery was scheduled in November to insert a Catheter into her Peritoneal cavity to prepare her to begin Peritoneal dialysis on December 1st. From October to December, while she waited for surgery and treatment to start, she continued to work but would come home and collapse every afternoon. The toxins building up in her bloodstream were making her very sick. She finally had to cut her hours back even more, adding financial strain to an already complicated situation. Once the Peritoneal dialysis began there was noticeable improvement. She had to be hooked up to a dialysis machine every night for 4 exchanges, but it was worth it to feel better again. Soon she was able to increase her hours at work again. On May 4th of 2007, she went to University of Alabama in Birmingham for testing and was placed on their Kidney Transplant list. The wait time for a deceased donor is 5 to 7 years. She has remained on their list with no luck in getting that much needed transplant. The Peritoneal dialysis worked well for


INSPIRING LIFE a few years, but has recently become less effective. This past July, at the urging of a friend, her mom, Nancie, started a Facebook page and group called “A Kidney For Desty” to bring attention to her need for a kidney donor. Several fundraisers have been held to raise money so that she could be put on the transplant list at Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida. The wait time is shorter at Mayo Clinic. Nancie has learned a lot about Iga and Kidney Transplantation while helping her daughter. For instance, she learned that everyone has Iga in their bodies, but it usually does not cause any problems. A virus or bacteria can trigger it’s spread to the kidneys where it can cause irreparable damage. They learned that the Scarlet Fever was most likely what caused her Iga Nephropathy. Also, Statistics show that a “Living Donor Kidney” (LDK) will last significantely longer than a kidney from a deceased person in the transplant patient’s body. “A fact that we did not know until we visited Mayo. We are hoping for a Living Donor. We’ve had several People who have offered to try to donate one of their kidneys, but so far either they weren’t a good match or a few had a health issue that prevented them from being a donor.” Said Nancie. Desty has an Aunt that matched the initial testing and will undergo further testing at Mayo Clinic in April. Desty continues to work part time as an Eye Care Technician as well as being a Super Mom to Austin and makes each day count. A recent post to her Facebook page shows her strength, courage and drive to survive and is why we chose Desty as our Super Southern Mom. “People have no clue what it’s like being a single parent of a teenager, working PT and being on dialysis. People don’t realize what I go through day in and day out. Some mornings I don’t even want to get out of bed but I keep telling myself its going to get better one day. Sometimes Situations happen and they’re uncontrollable. I’m doing the best I can for what I have to work with.”

SUPER SOUTHERN MOM

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You can follow Desty’s journey on Facebook, ‘A Kidney for Desty’. for more information on living donor transplantation, contact Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FL at 904 956-3249.

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Right: Desty Mathis Top: Desty & Son Austin, Christmas 2011 Bottom: Desty & Neice Della, March 2012


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Emma's INSPIRED by a locks donation made by her friend, Anna Tyree, Emma Ellis decided to grow her hair long enough to donate to the organization “Locks of Love”. In the spring of 2009, just before she turned six years old, Emma made her first donation. Immediately after the first ponytail was cut, Emma set a goal to grow her hair in order to donate again. In the spring of 2011, Emma made her second donation to Pantene Beautiful Lengths. “We chose Pantene’s organization the second time because a lot of the wigs made by Pantene are given made for cancer patients and Emma had seen an infomercial about St. Jude’s hospital and had expressed a desire to do something to contribute to children with cancer.” Emma’s mom told SCM. Emma is now growing her hair once again to donate a third time. Emma says, “It takes six ponytails to make a wig, I’ll eventually be responsible for having made a complete wig”!! The Ellis family prays for God to bless them to be a blessing. “We have found that sometimes those blessings come in unlikely forms. At least for now, for Emma, that blessing seems to be hair.”

INSPIRING LIFE

SUPER SOUTHERN CHILD

Locks of Love

“It takes six ponytails to make a wig...”

Left: Emma’s ponytail being cut off.

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Right: Emma proudly holds her locks.


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MAMA3RAZZI

[mah-muh-raht-tsee] noun, plural a new more aggressive form of paparazzi By Krista Sutherland | Sutherland Hill Farms Photography What is it about our children that bring out the stereotypical tourist in us – Hawaiian shirt, straw hat, camera strapped around our neck? Okay well maybe not the Hawaiian shirt….. My mom gave me a camera when my son was born. “Here,” she said, “you may want to take a few photos.” And thus the “Mamarazzi” in me was ignited! Everywhere we went, the camera went, documenting the journey of my son from baby to toddler to child to young adult. I can’t say he was always a willing participant to having his photo made. His first words might have been -- “Please, no more photos!” – but I was not deterred. His first train ride, his toothless smile, his pouting lip, his first day of school…..every special moment documented and now the prints cover my walls. My own Mamarazzi journey lead me to what is now my full time job – photographer. Regularly I get asked by my mommy clients about how to best capture the everyday moments of their child’s life. I may not have all the answers but I have learned a few good tips along my Mamarazzi way….

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If the 3 year old won’t come to you, you must go to the 3 year old -or insert any age here. Too often we insist that our child (or children) stand – in a particular location -- face us, and smile. How boring – not to mention difficult for an active child! If you want to document their love of reading, don’t have them stand in front of the bookcase, have them read a book – “click”. Set up a tea party with that favorite stuffed animal or doll they’ve had since birth – “click”. Do you have a fashion-loving 8 year old? Host a Friday night Fashion show – “click”. You get the idea….

2

Get on their level. Some of the best photos are made from the perspective of the child. Want to capture your sweet angel who has worn themselves out and fallen asleep on the floor? Get down on the floor with them. Sometimes standing up and shooting your photo downwards is a cute perspective but more often than not, getting down to their level will deliver the best photo. Not to mention it usually catches the child off guard when you’re lying on your belly on the floor!

3

Every moment can be a photo moment. Too often we forget to document some of the cutest moments of our child’s life – sleeping, brushing their teeth, tying their shoes, even crying. If there happens to be a melt down with a child during one of my photo sessions, I always try to get one or two photos of them crying. Most moms will tell me it is one of their favorite photos from the session! But with that being said, don’t forget to put the camera down every once and a while, take off that Mamarazzi straw hat, and spend some quality time with your child.

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HEART & HOME

Caffeine & Grace by: Tricia K. Lee

SPRING IS TRYING to move in to North Texas. 70 degrees in the daytime back into the 30’s at night. With it weeds are popping up in my back yard, disguised to my daughter as flowers. I can’t help but grin as she plucks them and joyfully presents them to me. I help her blow dandelions and watch the delight that fills her eyes as they drift on the wind.

surely we are more of a delight to Him than a weed. We sprout and bloom in the light of His presence. His word has the power to water just as He had sent rain to this little plant. If He spent that much time to create this weed….how much more had He spent to create me, to create you….this show of love and intention is yet another revealing of that we are of value and of beauty to Him. If for just an afternoon my Last week she handed me the tiniest daughter and I could find such flower. It was, of course, a weed also delight in the loveliness of a purple weed than how much more delight but I marveled at how intricate it was; pale lavender with deep purple does He find in us? Surely He smiled upon this tiny flower and when He polka dots. In my own hand was proof that even the tiniest of weeds, blew its seed down from heaven a seemingly no worth specimen that He called it lovely and as surely as He smiles down upon us from His my husband would do all he could throne He calls each of us Lovely, to eradicate come summer, was worthy of His majesty’s hand…if that Beloved, a Treasure, and Priceless. little weed innately was of enough value just by the sheer virtue of As an author and speaker Tricia Lee is “One being created by God that He had Warrior Mommy” inspiring women to know taken the time to adorn it with such they are cherished by their King. In addition detail…than how much more does to being a passionate advocate for adoption Tricia has a special message of hope, He value you and I? He dreamed honesty and humor for special needs moms. us, formed us, called us His…and

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HEART & HOME

The Journey Ahead By: Dr. Julie Delello

“See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven” (Matthew 18:10, NIV).

TWELVE YEARS AGO I anxiously awaited the birth of our second son Logan. Like all parents in the delivery room, we listened for the first cries, made sure that all fingers and toes were accounted for, and enthusiastically anticipated the first glimpse of our child’s appearance. However, sometimes even when those wonderful attributes are accounted for, we may not be prepared for the journey which lies ahead. At seven months of age, we became concerned that Logan was not meeting the developmental milestones expected in a normal baby. He was not crawling, rolling over nor was he seemingly attentive to the mounds of developmental toys that had been purchased for him. We questioned the likelihood that Lo40

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gan might even be visionless at the time. Upon a doctor’s visit, Logan was diagnosed with Agenesis of the Corpus Callosum (a complete absence of the nerve fibers connecting the two cerebral hemispheres) in addition to a syndrome known as Dandy-Walker. Dandy-Walker Syndrome is a congenital brain malformation involving the cerebellum (an area located at the back of the brain that controls movement). As parents, this diagnosis came as a shock but the prognosis was worse. We would be fortunate if our child lived past two years of age and would lucky if he ever learned to eat without a feeding tube or ever walk on his own. For Logan, the combination of


HEART & HOME

these two disorders has contributed to both developmental delays and learning disabilities. These include unsteadiness, poor muscle coordination, Nystagmus (jerky movements of the eyes), a lack of depth perception and pain perception, a higher sensitivity to touch, sensory deficits, problems with sleep, elimination, language disorders including dyslexia and dysgraphia, and behavioral disorders (Schizophrenic tendencies, Autism-spectrum and Attention Deficit Disorders). Without a Corpus Callosum, the two hemispheres of the brain are unable to work together; each side of the body seems to work independently rather than as a whole. Things that many of us take for granted such as walking, running, playing sports, riding a bike, or even tying shoes takes a lot more work and sometimes seems almost unachievable for someone with a callosal disorder. Although my child was born with a disorder, the diagnosis doesn’t change one thing about who he is. While the day-to-day experiences of raising a child with intellectual and developmental challenges can be overwhelming, as parents of special children given to us by God, we must make sure that our children are ever aware of how valuable they are to us, despite their disabilities. Each day he is alive, Logan gives us a reason to celebrate. He has reached milestones that at one time, we believed were unreachable. Today, Logan is a walking, talking miracle child. He is a blond-haired, green- eyed child who prefers to devote all of his waking moments to grooming horses, shooting basketballs, riding his adaptive, three-wheeled bicycle, and running a gas operated blower along the driveway to both our home and the neighbors. Logan loves people and he has a desire to help everyone. We have been given a gift in that one of Logan’s passions is cleaning. He loves to sweep and has learned to load and unload the dishwasher (although this may mean double washing the 41

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dishes at times). Logan always has something to say, materializing what seems to be endless chatter into vivid imaginary stories. He loves food and he has an insatiable appetite, yet he always pauses to say thank you. He consistently conveys to the lunchroom ladies how much he loves their cooking. School has been a challenge but we have been fortunate to have Logan in a new special education school the past two years where the teachers have given him the love, attention, and discipline that he needs. We have learned that one of the best remedies is to have fun and laugh together as a family. Trust me, we laugh a lot! Through God’s love for my child, I have learned to love. I have learned to trust Him because I am not strong enough in myself. I am passionate about the issues that challenge today’s children— especially those that have developmental, emotional, or behavioral disorders. I want to use the miraculous works that the Lord has done in the life of our family to help others who are facing similar struggles. Left: Logan on his adaptive, three wheeled bicycle. Above: Logan proudly posing with his football.

Dr. Julie Delello, Assistant Professor at the University of Texas at Tyler. Married, mother to 5 children, ages 14, 10, 12, and two year old twins. Educator, researcher, national speaker, and consultant .

jdelello@uttyler.edu


Stuff We Love Lay-n-Go ® A smart activity mat, cleanup, storage, and carryall solution in one! Lay-n-Go is an activity mat that converts into an easily transportable satchel allowing for effortless clean-up of small toy pieces. Shown: Lay-n-Go LITE, 18 inch. See it in action!

Hank From Grumpy Lobster comes kid friendly stories for iOS devices.! Meet Hank, our big hairy friend who tries to cool off on a hot summer day in “Hank’s Summer Day” and saves us from a cheesy disaster in “Hank Saves the Day”. Download FREE in the iTunes Store.

The Worry Woo Monsters Embrace Your Emotions, Find Your Inner Woo with The Award Winning Books and Plush Doll Series The WorryWoo Monsters.

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Stuff We Love Buzzy for Shots Buzzy is a palm sized massager, with a slot for ice cold wings. For children, the device looks like a friendly bee, while the adult version is plain black. Just like the dentist wiggling a gum for novocaine, Buzzy is placed on the skin “between the brain and the pain� to confuse the pain nerves with alternate sensations.

10 Things I Can Do to Help My World 10 things I can do to help my world by melanie walsh shares ten simple things we can all do to improve the world we live in.

CUBU Visual illusion leads to confusion as you try to follow number and color sequences. Watch out for the action cards that could completely disrupt your turn! Ages 8-Adult

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www.CuriousGeorgia.etsy.com

Curious Georgia LTD.

Hand Crafted Clothing for Curious Kids.

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HEART & HOME

COUPON

Epiphanies by Donna McInvale “Coupon Clippin’ Woman”

“Perhaps ‘epiphany’ is too strong (or divine) a word. However, these eight little nuggets of couponing truth have changed the way I use coupons and have allowed me to save so much more money on my groceries and toiletries.”

1. When an item is on sale at my local grocery store BOGO, I can use a manufacturer’s

coupon for BOTH items if my store allows it (check your store’s coupon policy). For example, if my local Publix has cake mix BOGO, with the regular price $2.25 and I have $1.00 off coupons for those cake mixes, I can use two coupons for my BOGO deal and get two cake mixes for $0.25 in this example ($2.25-$1.00-$1.00=$2.25). That’s 12.5 cents each!

2. Coupon stacking allows me to use both a manufacturer’s coupon and a store coupon

on the same item for even greater savings if my store allows it. (Again, check you store’s coupon policy). Furthermore, in our example in #1 above, if your store allows coupon stacking and the use of a coupon on both the items in a BOGO deal, you could add two store coupons to the deal above (if there are any available), to make the deal even better. That’s frequently when items come out to be free or money-makers...with the ability to get change back from the transaction or have overage applied to other items you are purchasing.

3. Keeping track of sales cycles at my local grocery store and saving my coupons for those times when an item is on sale for its lowest price yields the biggest savings. Yes, this seems obvious, but if you are unaware that many of the products you normally buy do go on sale on a regular basis, it might not be so obvious. You might want to quickly use the great $4.00 off coupon immediately and pay $2.00 for your product instead of $6.00. However, if you are aware that the product normally goes on sale every 6 to 8 weeks, you can wait until it goes on sale for $2 and then get it for free! (Don’t forget to watch your expiration dates on outstanding coupons...you might want to use it without a sales price if the coupon is really wonderful).

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HEART & HOME

4. There are many sources for manufacturer’s coupons other than just my local newspaper.

Yes, I can obtain money-saving coupons from newspaper inserts such as Redplum, Smart Source and P&G Saver. But I can also obtain manufacturer’s coupons directly from the manufacturer on their website or by writing or emailing them or “liking” their Facebook page. I can also find manufacturer’s coupons in my local grocery stores...blinkies are spit out by machines (and often have a blinking light), tear pads are located next to a product in the grocery store so that the consumer can simply “tear” one off. Occasionally, manufacturers will prepare a special coupon booklet for a specific grocery store and place them strategically in special displays in the store. Manufacturer’s coupons are also available to print from online sources such as Coupons.com and ecoupons are available to load on your store loyalty cards from websites such as SavingStar.com.

5. Organization is vital! You can’t use an exceptional $5 off your store purchase of $5 if you can’t find the coupon! Choose a system that works for you and commit to keeping it up to date. Schedule a little time, perhaps 45 minutes a week, to clean out your binder or your file folders. You can watch television and do that at the same time.

6. Know your store’s coupon policy and tuck a copy of it into your coupon binder so that you

will always have it as proof if a new cashier isn’t familiar with your store’s policies. In this day and age of extreme couponing, most stores, particularly chains, go out of their way now to educate their employees on their coupon policies. But it doesn’t hurt to have it in writing with you in case you need to politely point out that you are allowed to stack a store coupon and a manufacturer’s coupon.

7. If an item isn’t as cheap as you thought it was, either because your coupon isn’t working

or the original price isn’t as low as you expected, you do not have to purchase an item, even if it has already been rung up. You can politely ask the cashier to void it, or take it to customer service if you don’t want to hold up your cashier. Do not be bullied or guilt-ed into making a purchase.

8. Using coupon matching websites makes shopping with coupons possible for busy moms. I would not use 80 % of the coupons I do without these sights! Several of my favorites are SouthernSavers.com, CouponDivas.com, and MoneySavingMom.com. I believe in being a good steward of TIME as well as MONEY. Don’t reinvent the wheel. Use the sites that have done the coupon match-ups for you.

Donna McInvale is the Coupon Clippin’ Woman

CouponClippinWoman.blogspot.com

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Precious baby and children's boutique style clothing at prices that are just as irresistible!

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Smocked Frocks by MiraBella

smockedfrocksbymirabella@gmail.com

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Free shipping on all orders!


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Get your Child’s Bedroom Springtime Clean! First things first: Tidy up by picking up toys and other items that make a room look cluttered. This is a good time to weed out old or outgrown toys, too. Group things together for easy finding and better, easy putting away. Some functional storage options we love: From Thirty-One Gifts- the Mini Utility Bin for small toys, crayons & art supplies, The All-In-One Organizer for books, and the Large Utility Tote for games and other toys. From Lay-n-Go®: a patent pending activity mat, cleanup, storage and carryall solution in one. Two sizes (5’ and 18”) offer kids and parents a great way to easily manage their toy collections. Also a fabulous solution for traveling! For the DIYer, we LOVE the laundry basket dresser from Ana-White.com. Can’t you see it with toys and cute little chalkboard tags on it? (FREE building plans, here) Out with the cold – in with the cute! In the closet, that is. Move out-of-season clothing from closets – or to the back – and make room for a fresh Spring/Summer wardrobe. Now is a good time to donate! If it does not fit or it wasn’t worn last season, chances are, it’s just taking up space. * Look for consignment sales happening in your area, or check out the growing, online concierge service, thredUp.com or mom swap sites like www.outgrowingin.com. All allow you to recycle your kids’ clothes. Strip those beds! Face it, we’ve been hibernating all winter. Wash blankets, quilts and comforters. Vacuum the mattress and rotate it. Check the attached tag for rotation recommendation. *store the bulky extras you won’t need in warmer weather in a new, 50 gallon trash can. Line it with a bag and load it with blankets and clothes! Swap each season. Move Furniture – get help with the heavy stuff. Clean behind, under and around furniture. (Safety check: Heavy furniture should be secured to a stud in the wall.) Pull the dresser drawers and vacuum them inside and out. *rub the tracks of your drawers with the side of an old candle or wax paper to keep them gliding smoothly. Get those nooks and crannies. Have you noticed how much dust sits on the top of the door casing? Use a damp rag or a used dryer sheet to dust moldings, casings, and baseboards. Vacuum those especially dusty places using appropriate attachments. Let the sun shine in! Take down window treatments. Dust drapery, wash curtains and clean blinds. Clean your glass panes with a solution of vinegar, water and baking soda. *(3 Tbsp of vinegar to a spray bottle of water is a good amount. Add a little baking soda to soften the water. It will cause a bubbling reaction with the vinegar and make the solution a little stronger.) Use newspaper to clean the glass for a streak free shine if the ink doesn’t bother you. Don’t forget the sills and tracks. Open the window and spray some of your solution in the tracks. Use an old rag to wipe the built up gunk out. Remember that trick we used on the drawers? Wipe the tracks with wax paper for the same effect. {more} Ceiling Fans – Use an old pillowcase to dust fan blades. The dust will come off in the case and not everywhere else. *Check the direction of the fan while you’re at it. Be sure it is in an OFF position. A ceiling fan’s direction in the warmer seasons should be rotating counter clockwise or forward to produce those gentle, cooling breezes. This is a simple step that will help save on your electric bill, too. Now that the room is clean, freshen it up! Ideas: For older children -Make a lavender sachet {more}. Soak cotton balls in essential oils and hide in some inconspicuous and inaccessible areas. -We love Scentsy in Coconut Lemongrass for a bight, airy scent and if your child is too young for a warmer in their room, their Scentsy Pals are a great alternative.

Put it back together and enjoy!

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2012

{ freshly : picked } spring fashion preview

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Sweet Funky Vintage is your source for fresh, fun, and funky fashions both Moms and kids adore! Every Sweet Funky Vintage item is made in the USA of the highest quality materials, and can be purchased at a home trunk show near you or at www.sweetfunkyvintage.com. Each purchase you make helps support women and children through our social mission. Read more about our social mission: http://sweetfunkyvintage.com/pages/SocialMission.htm

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Catherine Crop Pant in Greenwich Village. Available in sizes 6-12m to 12. $33 (12m-3) $36 (4-8) $39 (10,12) Morgan modern monogram tee. Size 6-12m to 12. $26 tank, $28 short sleeve, $32 long sleeve.

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Baby Bradi Top in Belle Harbor Butterflies. Sizes XS (6/7), S (8/9), M (10), L (12). $36 Britton Knit Ruffle Pants in apple dot knit. Sizes 2-10. $36 (2-5), $40 (6-10) 64

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Sarah Knit Top in solid pink knit. Sizes 3-6m to 11/12. $35 Samatha Shorts in Kensington Dots. Sizes 2 to 12. $27 (2-5) $31 (6-12)

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Molly Tee in Park Hill Paisley. Sizes 6-1m to 12. $32. Birtton knit ruffle pant in blue and red stripe knit. Sizes 2 to 10. $36 (2-5) $40 (6-10)

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Left: Andrew Boy’s Short in Queens Patchwork. Sizes 6-12m to 7. $28 Paige Dress in Queens patchwork. Sizes 2 to 12. $38 (2-7) $48 (8-12) Center: Margot top in White Cotton Pique. Sizes 6-12m to 14. $39 (6-12m – 2/3) $44 (4/5 – 8) $49 (10/12, 14) Georgia Stripwork Skirt in Lenox Hill Leopard. Sizes 6-12m to 10. $38 (6-12m – 5) $42 (6-10) Right: Emma Top in Birdcages. Sizes 2 to 8. $40 (2-5) $43 (6-8) Jayne Cropped Pant in Lantern. Sizes 6-12m to 12. $28 (6-12m-3) $34 (4-8) $38 (10,12) Patrick Tie in Lantern. Sizes S(12-24m), M(2/3), L (4/5), XL(6/7) and Adult. $25 (S-XL) $30 Adult

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Our Ruffle Butt Bubble is made in 100% cotton and has great detail. Pink and Green colors with matching pink ruffles on the bottom. This design is running a little big.

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www.poshpickle.com

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www.poshpickle.com

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Can’t have Summer without lemonade. We love our, one of a kind, lemon applique’ dress. Great for the hot days of Summer. Designed with a two tone Pink and Yellow gingham check. !00% cotton. Available in sizes 6m to 5T. 75

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Left: Crab A-line. Avaiable in sizes 6m to 3T and 5T Center: Sailboat Bishop. Available in sizes 6m to 5T Right: Lobster Bubble. Available in size 6m to 3T. 76

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from Posh Pickle www.poshpickle.com

www.poshpickle.com

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REVERSIBLE PINAFORE: This is cute on any age girl and can be worn on both sides for different looks. Pairs perfectly with our Ruffle Bloomers, and lets the little ruffle butt peak through the back. Or, for the bigger little girls, our plain bloomers are a little bit longer in length. The pinafore can also be worn with our Ruffle Pants, or simply with jeans for the older girls. 78

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DOUBLE TWIRL DRESS: Full of feminine twirls, this dress has two layers of fabric arranged in asymmetrical hemlines. The straps tie into a bow through the back of the bodice, which is finished with a grosgrain trim. This dress has been one of our biggest sellers. 81

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APPLIQUE SHIRT AND LOUNGE PANTS (sold separately): Your little one’s name will be appliqued in your choice of fabric and thread color on a t-shirt or onesie. These go perfectly with our twirl skirts, ruffle pants, and lounge pants to make a complete outfit, and also work great with jeans. The pants are perfect for lounging about, but stylish enough to be worn anywhere, especially paired with a matching applique name shirt. These pants are made for comfort, with a loose, wide-legged fit and an elastic waist. 82

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KNOT DRESS shown with the RUFFLE PANTS (sold separately): Fun, twirly, and girly! The knot dress should be a staple in any little girl’s wardrobe, it’s so versatile. It can be layered over a long sleeved shirt for cooler days or worn by itself for summer fun. As she grows taller, it can be worn over jeans for a different look entirely. Add the Ruffle Pants and you have a complete outfit! 85

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Before she stops believing, before she lets go, capture the memories, tutu the moment...

While your princess plays dress-up at home she is helping women in other parts of the world step out of poverty. Women empowering women! Find out how at www.tututhat.com Join our journey on www.facebook.com/tututhat

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Read the story of how it all began...


Every Girl Can be a Princess The Story of TuTu That* by Gaby Cisneros

MY HUSBAND AND I truly believe it is our social responsibility to get involved, to share and to care for those who cannot do that for themselves. But how do we teach that to our girls (Isabella, 7 and Sophia, 3)? Isabella’s world is full of pink, glitter, color and everything pretty. She is as girly as they come. How do I let her be and enjoy that fantasy world which she will eventually outgrow on her own, without missing out on the opportunity to teach her that we all have the ability to influence the world we live in. She too (tutu, tiara, feather boa and all) has the power to touch someone else’s life in a positive way. This is where my business comes in! We have taken something that most little girls love to have, something that makes them feel like princesses who can do anything and be anyone and we have given it a purpose. I have developed a business with a socially responsible mission. We are fully committed to giving back but we are just as committed to helping girls understand that they too can make a difference. Following the Good Returns Business Model, Tutu That* (our business) has committed itself to investing 100% of our profits each year into fully sustainable anti-poverty programs that will help other women around the world lift themselves from 87

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poverty. Every time a little girl is gifted with one of our tutus they also receive a certificate from us which acknowledges their contribution to the cause. We let them know they are already helping to change the world by joining our Tutu That* Princess Club. We have made it our mission to empower one little girl at a time, to teach them the powerful influence they can have on the future of our world. So when I’m asked “why tutus?” my answer is, why not? My daughter does not understand about anti-poverty programs, micro financing and such but she does know tutus. She knows they make her feel special and pretty and now I’m telling her, but more importantly I’m showing her, that she can also feel like a real life superhero in them. I have simply taken something which although perceived as vane, has much sentimental value to most little girls and gave it more of a significant purpose. I enjoy my business; I enjoy making my girls a huge part of it but most importantly I believe in our mission and I believe in helping girls understand they too can empower and influence others! www.tututhat.com


DESIGN SPOTLIGHT

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DESIGN SPOTLIGHT

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g n i r p S s a h ! g n u r p S Smocked Children’s Clothing

check us out on

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Art BeckieAnn by

ARTWORK HAS been a long time passion for me, however I never thought of myself as an artist until I became a mother! I graduated from Florida Atlantic University with a bachelors degree in Arts & Humanities and worked in the insurance industry until my son, William was born in 2003. Originally, I planned on going back to work, however managing a household and working outside the home was a difficult task for me. So, I decided to stay home. Although, I enjoyed spending time with my son the challenges of living off of one income was tough, especially since I wanted to decorate my son’s room. I started to create art and frames for my son’s nursery. Next, I started out selling art in my community, to friends & family. Then in 2003 and decided to try selling it on Ebay. Ebay provided a wonderful avenue to show my art to people around the world. Shortly thereafter I launched my own website which has been a great success and has allowed me to stay at home with my children . Currently my art is carried at several chic children’s boutiques across the United States, to include Rosenberry 91

DESIGN SPOTLIGHT

MEET A MOMPRENUER

Rooms, Punkin Patch, The Frog and The Princess and The Boys Depot. My children are the inspiration for my art, I get to experience the wonders of childhood all over again through my own children. It’s amazing how a fluttering butterfly or a leaping frog lights up their face. Beckie and her family now reside in Macon, Georgia. You can see her full line at www.ArtByBeckieAnn.com

southernchild magazine | April 2012


DESIGN SPOTLIGHT

DIY Easter Topiaries by Tricia Lee

“I fell in love with these adorable Pinterest inspired Easter Egg Topiaries from Tattered and Linked. I made several for my home and thought you might enjoy them too. Have fun and Happy Easter!�

Supplies Pre-cut wooden craft oval, any size Spray paint or craft paint Scrapbook paper Wooden stake and/or wooden block, Wooden dowel or stake cut to your desired height Ribbon or trim as desired Mod Podge Wood Glue Nails or Screws appropriate size for your wooden oval and stake **Most of the items listed are readily available at your local craft store

Option: Instead of using a block to

mount your stake, use a decorative bucket or planter! Fill with hard-packed gravel or Plaster of Paris to secure it. Cover with moss or Easter grass & add decorative items. 92

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Steps: 1. Mount your stake to your wooden block or see our other option. 2.Paint your oval, stake (and wooden block if assembled). Allow to dry completely. 3. Trace the oval shape onto your scrapbook paper and cut it out 4. Mod Podge it onto your paper onto your “egg� (wooden oval) and allow to dry completely. 5. Assemble your topiary. If you have already mounted the stake to a wooden block then add a thin bead of wood glue to the stake and attach to the back of your wooden oval. Add nails or screws to reinforce. Place wherever you would like a little Easter cheer and enjoy!

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P is for PARTY

A Boy’s Easter Garden Party by Kristin from Homespun with Love Homespunwithlove.blogspot.com

We titled our Easter party, “A Boy’s Easter Garden”, to bring a little more focus on boy’s celebrations, and how a boy might celebrate Easter in the garden. What would be some of the things a boy would have hidden in the Easter garden, what might he find to play with there and what might his sweet tooth fancy on such a joyous occasion?!?!

The Concept.

For us, it is somewhat of a story, an Easter tale to be told: In a boys’ Easter garden you might see the loveable Peter Rabbit, a toy airplane, train, dinosaur and a beat up baseball and glove. And, should a boy in the garden spot a birds’ nest fallen from the tree, he would carefully and kindly pick it up and place it in his ball glove for safe keeping. When it was time to dine on the Easter treats, he would surely be in the company of the blue bird helping himself to bird seed cereal. In his special jars of things he collected, he would seek comfort in his old friends gummy worms, jelly bean rocks and fruity gummy bugs. In a boys Easter garden things are not always what they seem: Cookies shaped as Spring time blooms, carrot suckers, and mud and worm pudding pots. How we did it.

We created this Easter party by using many items we already owned, and made much of the party elements. What we needed, we found at the local thrift store, such as the blue and white striped sheet we used to make our back drop bunting, made table runners with, covered our suckers with, and embellished pudding pots. 96

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A local dollar store is a great s like we used for our party such ers, mini terra cot

In addition, making semi-homem costs down and reall

Lastly, we try to always use wh you need to buy something try s they are full of

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source to find inexpensive items h as: cookie pops, carrot suckta pots and more.Â

made treats is a must in keeping y doing it homemade.Â

hat we already have is first! If earching your local thrift store, f GREAT finds!

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HOMEMADE SCHOLAR

Green

Homeschooling by Ashley Vanlandeghem (14 yrs. old) If you are a homeschooling family, you are most likely a family a family that understands the value of stewardship. In order to accomplish your goals, you have to be good stewards of your time and your money. What if you could incorporate stewardship of this beautiful planet into your family homeschool? By following a few simple guidelines, you can make a difference and teach your children how to care for God’s creation. Start thinking green and make a plan to Reduce, Reuse, Re-buy, and Recycle in your homeschool. By reducing the amount of things you purchase and the amount of resources used in your daily life, you can make a significant impact on the environment while teaching your children how to conserve resources. Homeschooling provides a unique opportunity for families to reduce in several areas. Planning ahead and organizing can significantly reduce the need to purchase and repurchase 102

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items. Of course clothing, shoes, boots and coats are often stored and used for several seasons but, many families purchase brand new school supplies, back packs, and school boxes each year. Try using these items for more than one school year. Maybe even have a competition to see which child can get the most use out of a single item! Teach your children the value of taking care of the things the Lord provides and tame the desire for “new” things. Since homeschooling families are home during the day, they have the opportunity to govern the use of electricity and water. In some areas, the cost of electricity goes up during the peak hours of the day (noon to 6 PM). Turning the thermostat up or down accordingly during the day can reduce usage, waste, and cost. Parents can add “energy saving” tasks to daily chore charts. A small child can be the energy detector. He/she can go through the house at designated times during the day to


HOMEMADE SCHOLAR do an “energy check�. Light bulbs, computer monitors and small appliances draw a large amount of electricity over time. Turning them off when not in use saves energy. Older children can wash clothes or linens and hang them out to dry. Teach your children to use as little water as possible when brushing teeth, doing dishes, mopping floors and even when flushing toilets. Every homeschool can be a place where resources and material items are conserved. Homeschooling provides the perfect opportunity to reuse resources. As previously mentioned, school gear can be reused from year to year. However, curriculum is another important reusable resource. If curriculum is purchased and used for multiple students, it saves money and precious resources. Consumable materials can be copied and used for multiple children (see permissions in individual workbooks). If you want to be even more green minded, you can put pages into a page protectors and have students complete with low odor dry erase markers instead of making paper copies. White boards or chalk boards work well too. Train your children to use pens, pencils, crayons, glue etc. until they are gone and teach them to keep track of these items. Using and reusing items until they cannot be used any more is a way to reduce waste and teach responsibility. Homeschool families have several opportunities to rebuy or re-sell supplies and curriculum via used curriculum fairs, used bookstores, personal friends, co-ops and the internet. Once your family is finished with a certain curriculum or resource, you can pass that curriculum on to another family. You can also benefit greatly from the previously used items of other homeschool families. Again, training yourselves and your children to see the value in used items versus crisp, new, shrink-wrapped kits is a wonderful way to save money, improve stewardship and conserve natural resources. Check with your local homeschool support groups to find out about resale opportunities in your area and search the internet for used curriculum auction sites and nearby used book stores. It is possible to obtain the bulk of your materials for less than half of the retail price. If you get a network of homeschool families established, you may even be able to swap items, barter or borrow without spending a dime! Maybe your homeschool co-op or support group could even set up a library of shared curriculum and supplies. Making use of every opportunity to conserve resources and spend money wisely is a worthy endeavor. Recycling is an important way to protect our environment for future generations and reduce the volume in landfills. It is important to make it a 103

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goal to have a recycle-friendly home and homeschool. This requires planning ahead and building a system that works for your family. Determine the kinds of things you can recycle, set up a sorting system in critical areas of your home and assign recycling duties to family members. Check with your local recycling or disposal company to learn the guidelines for your area. The kitchen is an area where you will have a large amount of waste. Set up a system where you can sort cans, cardboard, plastics and glass. Set up another recycle area in the home-office or school room. Designate a location for used paper (some paper can be re-used as drawing paper or for re-printing on the blank side), construction paper, newspaper, recyclable office supplies, printer cartridges and used containers. The garage is another area where a recycle center is needed. Paints, vehicle fuels, cleaning products and yard waste can be sorted in the garage space. Every room of your home is full of recycle opportunities. By implementing the 4 R’s (reduce, reuse, re-buy, and recycle) into your home and homeschool, you are setting your children up to be good stewards and witnesses in this world. Making it a family goal to conserve natural resources builds character and diminishes materialistic tendencies. With a little planning, you can honor the Lord and have a Green Homeschool that blesses the generations to come!


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Capri Sun and the Capri Sun pouch are a trademark of the Deutsche Si-Si-Werke GmbH & Co. Betriebs KG Trademarks of Frito-Lay North America, Inc used under license. (c) 2011. TerraCycle速, the TerraCycle Logo速 and Brigade速 are all property of TerraCycle, Inc. used under license. 息2011. www.terracycle.com

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FAMILY TRAVEL

LEGOLAND Discovery Center atlanta.legolanddiscoverycenter.com

LEGOLAND Discovery Center opened in Atlanta just in time for spring. The indoor family entertainment center was recently constructed on the third floor of Buckhead’s Phipps Plaza. LEGOLAND has several interactive attractions including a 4D Cinema and MINILAND (a miniature build of Metro Atlanta) equipped with music and fireworks. LEGO Cafe offers a variety of items on its menu including gluten free snacks and a few family meal deals! Whether you’re celebrating a birthday, a weekend trip to Atlanta, or simply want to take your child to something fun visit LEGOLAND! All adults must be accompanied by a child and all children an adult! Attractions include: • LEGO Factory: Learn all about LEGO bricks in this fun, interactive factory experience. • LEGO 4D Cinema: Guests can get in on the adventurous action as LEGO comes to life on the screen. (Watch out - you may get wet!) • Kingdom Quest: This interactive chariot-themed ride is equipped with laser guns to zap beastly monsters on a mission to rescue the captured princess. (I recommend doing this as soon as you walk in - but note it is dark and might be scary for very young children.) • Merlin’s Apprentice: Budding wizards can help the powerful magician conjure spells and sorcery through pedal-powered energy on a high-flying ride to the top. (So cute and especially fun for younger kids.) • MINILAND: A miniature landscape of area buildings, attractions and other significant sites are immortalized in one million LEGO bricks. (Have you seen all my pictures on Facebook of Atlanta attractions? This was MY favorite part. I think most adults will agree!) • LEGO Racers: LEGO buffs can build their own speedy creations and test them on specialty tracks. • LEGO Fire Academy: This fire-house themed play area lets LEGO lovers get energized with a climbing wall, jungle gym, slide and more. • LEGO Construction Site: A soft play area that is perfect for younger builders. • Master Model Builder: An exclusive workshop offers hands-on direction from the best in the business. • The LEGO Shop: With over 900 LEGO products, it’s the perfect one-stop shop. Guests may visit the LEGO Shop without purchasing a ticket to LEGOLAND Discovery Center Atlanta. • DUPLO Village: Ideal for tiny guests, the large bricks &soft play areas offer pint-sized fun. • Earthquake Tables: Guests can build their own towers, then stand back and watch as tables’ plates move, simulating an earthquake and testing the buildings’ strength. • LEGO Friends: Heartlake City is the perfect backdrop for creativity, as guests enjoy creating custom cupcakes, gardenscapes and more. • Café: From a strong cup of coffee to full meals with the family, the Café has something for everyone. • Birthday Rooms: LEGOLAND Discovery Center Atlanta begins hosting birthday parties in June, and onsite birthday rooms create the perfect LEGO experience.

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Macaroni Kid Family Travel presents the Nation’s 1st Family Travel Expo & Travel Blogger’s Conference 2 Days. 2 Events. Spring 2012 in NYC Family Travel Expo - May 6, 2012 Travel Blogger Conference - May 7, 2012

Families will discover new adventures near and far. Research the ideal resort and vacation destinations for your family. Bloggertunities for Family Travel Bloggers to acquire the knowledge, skills and relationships to expand your horizons.

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INS P I R AT IO N

One day a man was walking along the beach when he noticed a child picking something up and gently throwing it into the ocean. Approaching the boy, he asked, “What are you doing?” The youth replied, “Throwing starfish back into the ocean. The surf is up and the tide is going out. If I don’t throw them back, they’ll die.” “Son,” the man said, “don’t you realize there are miles and miles of beach and hundreds of starfish? You can’t make a difference!” After listening politely, the boy bent down, picked up another starfish, and threw it back into the surf. Then, smiling at the man, he said,

“I made a difference for that one.”

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Southern Child Magazine April 2012  

Southern Child Magazine - Meet April's Waiting Children. Our April issue features our Spring Fashion Preview {freshly : picked}, Voluteering...

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