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EDITOR But allowing spontaneity to create down time and relaxation can make the day ten times better! Keeping a daily activity like reading can be a great way to implement some sort of structure in the day. This summer, treat yourself by taking time to fill your own bucket. I know that the kids take up most of your time, but how many times have we heard the expression to truly love someone else we need to love ourselves first? Take an hour yoga class, walk in the park or buy a new lipstick and feel renewed. Have a happy summer!


Photo credit JCPenney Portrait Studios

ummer is finally here and it’s time to relax and enjoy the break with your kids. But how does one relax with a house full of kids for the summer? This is the ultimate mom challenge to make the best of a lighter schedule that results in less structure. I eventually found an equation that worked in my house… send the kids to camp! When my kids were small, I often felt like a camp counselor keeping them active.

South Jersey MOM will be hosting Riverwind’s Sunset Music Festival July 12th, 5:30pm to 10:30pm. There will be vendors, free face painting and you can dance the night away with the friends and family to live music

MY FIFTH AVENUE BODY LOTION A fragrance that celebrates the unique passion generated at the heart of the city. The sparkling fresh floral scent evokes the energy of the most famous street in the world, featuring crisp citrus notes for a surprise burst of freshness complemented by an embrace of feminine florals.; $29

Your friend & fellow MOM,

Karen Ognibene Executive Editor

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Jackson Mandelkow is 10 months old and is walking already! He loves to play and imitate his big brother in everything he does. He loves FRUIT, watermelon, bannanas and strawberries are his favorite.


ESSIE TREAT LOVE AND COLOR You can have stronger nails in just 1 week. 60% less peeling and 35% less breakage. The first advanced 1-step strength & color in a collection of knockout nail polish shades. My favorite is 05 sheers to you.; $10

SCHMIDT'S ROSE + VANILLA NATURAL DEODORANT A signature formula uses baking soda to neutralize odor and is a bit firmer than conventional deodorants. The condensed formula provides extra odor protection and requires only a small amount be applied to get results. A non-greasy, non-sticky feel that works amazingly well. A great stocking stuffer!; $7

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South Jersey MOM

July/August 2019 CEO/Publisher Christopher Ognibene • (609) 670-1794 Executive Editor Karen Ognibene • (609) 230-6280 Marketing & Business Development Specialist Michelle Scianni • (856) 986-9606 For General Advertising Inquiries Marissa Josephick • (856) 537-7089

Karen Ognibene, MA, LPC Licensed Professional Counselor

Psychotherapy for Adults and Couples, Psychoanalysis and Trauma Treatment Specialties:

Depression • Anxiety Relationship Issues Eating Issues • Grief & Loss Low Self-Esteem PTSD and Trauma EMDR Psychodynamic Person Centered Therapy


44 Cooper Street • Woodbury, NJ 08096

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Production Manager Lisa Celfo Editorial Assistant Julia Ognibene Cover Photographer JCPenny Portrait Studios at Deptford Mall 1750 Deptford Center Road Deptford, NJ 08096 856-845-2891 Katelyn Shea • Web Designer • (215) 366-3316

Superior Graphics Print Management LLC publishes South Jersey MOM™ monthly and distributes it throughout the region. The publication is available free of charge at select locations. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part is not permitted without the authorization of the publisher. Superior Graphics Print Management, LLC, Publisher of South Jersey MOM P.O. BOX 268 • Wenonah, NJ 08090 Main: (609) 670-1794 Fax: (856) 210-1524 All materials and services provided in this magazine are for informational or educational purposes only

Enter Your Child’s Photo to Be On Our Next Cover Every issue South Jersey MOM features a local child on the cover. If you think you have the “Cutest Kid in Town”, send a 4x6 photo to South Jersey MOM. P.O. Box 268, Wenonah, NJ 08090. On back of photo write child’s name and age along with guardian contact info.



Chance to win prizes and more!

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Spruce Up for Summer Make your backyard the perfect outdoor space


o make the transition to summer season effortless, there may be some backyard upgrades and prep to be done to ensure your outdoor space is in tip-top shape. From your pool and patio to the grill, these tips can help get your backyard summer-ready. OVERHAUL THE PATIO Patios and decks are often considered the hub of the backyard, so consider sprucing yours up by power-washing the stone to remove any winter buildup or use stain for a complete refresh. Adding a pergola or umbrellas can help protect you from the elements and, for added comfort, consider installing an outdoor ceiling fan for humid days and a fire pit or patio heater for cooler nights. UPGRADE OUTDOOR FURNITURE To ensure your backyard furniture lasts, invest in materials such as teak wood, redwood, cedar or stainless steel, which are typically durable and low-maintenance. If you want to add a personal touch, consider colorful cushions, throw pillows or an area rug made of weatherproof fabric.

SMARTEN UP YOUR POOL AND BACKYARD With smart homes on the rise, today’s tech-savvy homeowners are not only looking to automate appliances and gadgets inside the home, but now want smart controls in their outdoor spaces, as well. For example, Hayward’s OmniHub smart pool control offers pool owners the convenience and customization of complete pool, spa and backyard lighting automation from smart devices. PREP YOUR GRILL Get ahead of barbecue season by building in ample time to prep your grill. Scrub or season your grill grates to avoid rust, stock up on charcoal and wood chips, check gas grills for leaks and fill up your propane tank. For safety, make sure your grill is at least 10 feet away from your home, outdoor structures and any trees or bushes. CONVERT YOUR POOL TO SALT WATER For the ultimate in pool luxury, consider switching your traditional chlorine pool to salt water. It’s a surprisingly simple project that can transform your pool experience. Salt

pools offer owners soft, clean and clear water that won’t irritate eyes, dry out skin and hair, give off harsh odors or cause bathing suits to fade. Designed to be a convenient alternative to conventional chlorine, Hayward’s AquaRite system gently dissolves salt into the perfect amount of chlorine to sanitize your pool without harsh chemicals while creating velvety-smooth water. KEEP THE BUGS AT BAY Mosquitos and other bugs can put a damper on outdoor entertaining, so be sure to stock up on repellents to ensure a bug-free backyard. Keep citronella or eucalyptus candles and torches on hand to maintain a pest-free space. Whether you’re planning a family barbecue or pool party, or just want a space that offers the ultimate in tranquility, visit for more tips to help jumpstart your home improvement project. Family Feaures.

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The Post-Pregnancy Belly Bulge YOU SHOULD BE CONCERNED ABOUT By Robert Perez, MD, General Surgeon—Virtua Surgical Group Michelle Peshick, PT, Physical Therapist—Virtua Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation


ou gain weight over 9+ months of pregnancy, so it’s normal to take 9+ months to return to your pre-pregnancy body. However, a belly bulge that doesn’t go away for months after delivery can be a sign of diastasis recti—a separation of your abdominal muscles. The normal separation between your abdominal muscles is about 0.5 – 1 centimeter, or about 1 finger width. Diastasis recti causes your belly to bulge because the gap between your left and right abdominal muscles widens to the width of 2 fingers or more. WHAT CAUSES DIASTASIS RECTI? Your abdominal muscles normally meet in the middle of your abdomen. Pregnancy hormonal changes allow the connective tissue to thin and stretch so your belly can expand. As a result, your growing uterus causes abdominal muscles to separate and move aside. With diastasis recti, abdominal muscles are so stretched that they don’t fully come back together after pregnancy. Diastasis recti is common after pregnancy and affects about two-thirds of women. WHO’S AT RISK? You might be at a higher risk if: • You have more than one child • Your children are close in age • You’re older than 35 years old when pregnant • You’re pregnant with multiples (twins, triplets) • You have a heavy baby • You have a small body frame • You had diastasis recti during a previous pregnancy WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS? A belly bulge that doesn’t go away 8 weeks after delivering your baby is the most noticeable symptom. Because your spine, bowels, bladder and other internal organs aren’t getting the necessary support from your abdominal muscles, diastasis recti can lead to pelvic organ prolapse (pelvic organs dropping out of their proper place) and cause other problems, including: • Constipation • Low back pain • Urinary incontinence • Abdominal soreness Severe cases can lead to a hernia, which occurs when internal organs or tissues poke out of a hole in your abdominal wall. If you develop a hernia, you’ll need surgery to correct it. CAN I PREVENT IT? Your risk for diastasis recti depends on several risk factors beyond your control. However, you may lower your risk by avoiding excess strain on your abdominal muscles during pregnancy: • Avoid crunches and other intense abdominal exercises after your first trimester. • Use proper body mechanics when lifting older children, sitting up in bed and exercising. 6 | July/August 2019

• Maintain abdominal strength during pregnancy with gentle abdominal exercises like pelvic tilts and by doing Kegel exercises. After pregnancy, give your belly time to heal and avoid doing any abdominal exercises—especially crunches—until you get approval from your healthcare provider. Ask your doctor what exercises are safe for you. HOW IS IT TREATED? Treatment often includes physical therapy or surgery. PHYSICAL THERAPY FOR DIASTASIS RECTI After your condition is assessed, physical therapy (PT) may be recommended. Your physical therapist will develop a treatment plan that may include: • Gentle abdominal exercises • Wearing an abdominal binder, or a support belt around your belly • Manual physical therapy techniques to loosen tight or tender abdominal muscles • Taping for abdominal support and to cue core strengthening • Learning to monitor abdominals during exercise and activities to prevent worsening of the gap Since each case is different, the length of PT treatment is different for everyone. PT can be especially beneficial for women with smaller abdominal separations who want to treat diastasis recti before becoming pregnant again. SURGERY FOR DIASTASIS RECTI If you have a large abdominal separation and it hasn’t responded to PT, surgery may be an option. Surgery is often performed on an outpatient basis using robotic technology. When compared to traditional open surgery, robotic techniques can offer a faster recovery time, less pain and a lower risk of complications. However, surgery to treat diastasis recti isn’t recommended for women who plan to become pregnant in the future. If you think you have diastasis recti, talk to your OB/GYN or call 1-888-VIRTUA-3 for an appointment. Robert Perez, MD, Virtua Surgical Group, Hainesport Michelle Peshick, PT, Virtua Physical Therapy Marlton, Moorestown & Washington Township 888-847-8823 •

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Workplace Tips and Strategies for New Parents


hile having or adopting a child can be a rewarding and exciting time for new parents, many working moms and dads will tell you navigating the complex maze of employee benefits can be confusing. Between short-term disability insurance, Family Medical Leave, vacation, paid time off and state and municipal paid leave laws, the process can be anxiety-inducing. To help alleviate stress, employee benefits company Unum recently conducted research among new parents who had a child or adopted in the previous five years. The findings pointed to a need for more communication between the new parents and their workplace human resources and management teams, both before and after leave. Communicate early and develop a leave plan Nearly half (49%) of new moms and more than a third (36%) of new dads surveyed did not meet with their manager or human resources department to discuss their leave benefits. Of those who did, 40% spent 30 minutes or less doing so. “Most employers offer standard benefits for new parents including disability insurance (for birth moms) and Family Medical Leave, and we’re finding more companies are adding additional perks like company-paid leave, flexible schedules and college savings accounts,” said Angel Bennett, a director in the Leave Management Center at Unum. “It’s important for expectant parents to meet with their managers and human resources to inform them, discuss available benefits and develop their leave plans well before the baby’s arrival.” Nearly half (47%) of new birth moms said breastfeeding is one of their biggest challenges upon returning to the workplace. Mothers who plan on breastfeeding should discuss their options with human

8 | July/August 2019

resources. Some companies offer lactation rooms, milk storage options and breast milk shipping services. Things to discuss and consider after the baby arrives Perhaps unsurprisingly, 48% of new parents are more tired, 35% are more stressed and 30% are more stressed about finances. However, some employers offer benefits that can help. According to the Unum research, 60% of new mothers and 40% of new fathers struggled with depression or anxiety following the birth or adoption of their children. Many companies offer an employee assistance program, which can include a fixed number of counseling sessions or tele-behavioral health options, to help with life challenges. Personal finance expert Laura Adams also suggests an open dialogue with your employer about financial protection benefits to help reduce anxiety during this potentially challenging time. “Ensure your income is protected by reviewing your long-term disability insurance policy and that your family is taken care of with a life insurance policy,” Adams said. “Also be sure to add the new child to your health care policy and, if available, consider signing up or increasing the amount you put into a flexible spending account.” To help new parents navigate these processes, “Bringing Up Baby: A Guide to Workplace Parental Leave Resources” contains basic tips, timing and conversation starters to engage with managers and human resources representatives. This guide, along with other employee and employer resources including a mental health report and caregiving report, can be found at Family Features. Photo courtesy of Getty Images

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Don’t let ear infections ruin your kids’ summer! Custom swim plugs prevent water from entering the ear canal, reducing the risk of painful ear infections.

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Stratford Voorhees

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You’re Invited to join our Junior Tennis Summer Camp Now Taking Reservations!

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Camp begins Monday, June 24th and ends Friday, August 30th — Monday through Friday The morning session is 9:00am—Noon and will be instruction and clinics. Afternoon session is 1:00pm—4:00pm and will be match play/tournament play. Also offered: • High School Match Play • Junior Beginner & Intermediate Class • Programs for Every Age Group & Skill Level Visit our website for more program details and rates...

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For 4th of July

ith crowds of unfamiliar people and loud, scary noises, the Fourth of July can make even the most laid-back, four-legged family members apprehensive and unpredictable. “Research shows that more pets are lost on the Fourth of July than any other day of the year and animal shelters are most crowded after the holiday, filled with lost dogs and cats,” said Aimee Gilbreath, executive director, Michelson Found Animals Foundation. “Taking steps to protect your pet can help ensure a safe and enjoyable holiday for the whole family.” These tips can help keep your pet comfortable and secure:

✶ Get identification tags. A collar and external ID tags are quick and easy ways to identify your pet if lost, and they make him or her instantly recognizable as someone’s pet. What information you provide on the tags may vary depending on your personal security concerns, but at the very least, include a phone number. If you’re concerned about noisy dangling tags, or the tags snagging and pulling loose, choose a flat style that affixes to the fabric of the collar. ✶ Get your pet a microchip and register it. A registered microchip is one of the best ways to identify a lost pet who has slipped out of his or her collar. However, pet owners may falsely assume that just because their pet has a microchip, they’ve taken the necessary steps. It’s critical your pet’s microchip is registered with your current contact information, and Found Animals recommends updating your contact info anytime you move or change phone numbers. If you’ve adopted your pet from a rescue or other organization, it’s important to transfer the chip registration. Register your pet’s microchip for free at ✶ Avoid the crowds. Avoid bringing your pooch to crowded events, parades and other gatherings with a lot of commotion or people. A combination of heat, loud 10 | July/August 2019

noises, packed spaces and scorching blacktops can be stressful and harmful to your pet’s health. It’s especially wise to avoid bringing your pets to firework events, as they could panic and run. ✶ Gear up with a leash and harness. Even leash-trained pets can get spooked by Fourth of July festivities. Secure pets with a well-fitting leash and collar or harness. Remember an anxious pet may slip out of a collar or repeatedly tug against a leash, so it may be necessary to take extra precautions. ✶ Fit in a workout. Be sure to give your pets lots of exercise during the day so they’ll be a little worn out before the scary noises start at night. A long run or play session during the day may help with your pet’s overall stress and anxiety levels.

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✶ Create a safe space inside and away from fireworks. Confining movement in dogs and cats actually has a calming effect on them. Provide your pet with a safe space, such as a cozy bed, room or crate. Also close windows and doors to minimize sound and escape routes. Another option is an anti-anxiety wrap or coat. In a pinch, if you’re away from home, you can even create one from a scarf. ✶ Try a calming aid. If you’re worried about a pet that stresses easily, talk to your vet in advance about CBD and anti-anxiety treats, chews, drops or other remedies that can help your pet relax. There are plenty of prescription and homeopathic solutions out there that can help your pet get the extra dose of relaxation he or she needs. Find more summertime tips for your pets at Family Features.



Learn more at:

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Your Pregnancy; Your Experience— Own It With Inspira Health! By Laurie Trongone, AVP Women’s and Children’s Services, Inspira Health


regnancy is one of the most endearing moments of your life – a joyous celebration for the entire family. At Inspira Health, we want the celebration and joy to be continuous, with only positive experiences – one in which the only bump you encounter is the one on your tummy. Mothers-to-be have decisions awaiting – from nutrition, to delivery, to personal preference – and at Inspira Health, we’re here to make your experience simple, with a focus on YOU.

award-winning nurses and midwives will get to know you on an intimate level and be there for you throughout your entire experience. We understand mothers-to-be have questions, and we’re here to guide you each step of the way. We want you to own your pregnancy – each decision, each step – we’re here for you.

Create Your Own Birthing Experience Birth is a unique experience, and you should have a say in how it plays out. Inspira Health provides holistic maternity services that put mothers-to-be exclusively in the driver’s seat – allowing them to navigate each turn. Choice is a word we believe in. By having control over your experience, you will make this memorable for your entire family. Your pregnancy. Your birth experience. Inspira Health is here to help you own your journey.

Keep Your Family Close Together At Inspira Health, we believe mothers-tobe are at peak comfort and relaxation when supported by family members and a supportive team. Prior to the delivery, family members can join in on family focused maternity classes, and consultations – but that’s not all. Family inclusion extends all the way up until delivery, when spouses, other support people and evensiblings can often be in the room to welcome the newest family member right alongside you. And after the delivery, moms can get some extra relaxation with peace of mind that the whole family is together in one happy place.

Partner with a Provider Once you find out you’re expecting, or if you plan to become pregnant, you’ll need to find a provider that will work with your lifestyle. At Inspira Health, our physicians,

Treat Yourself and Newborn to a High-Quality Welcome The first time you meet your newborn will be in the delivery room. When determining the best place to welcome your newborn,

12 | July/August 2019

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consider privacy and state-of-the-art amenities to help both you and your baby transition into this new chapter of your life. Or, for your newborn, their very first chapter. Find a place that is comfortable from check-in, through labor, delivery, recovery and postpartum. Our newest hospital - Inspira Medical Center Mullica Hill, opening in November – will cater mothers-to-be with private delivery rooms, offering: • modern labor beds; • wireless fetal monitoring; • fast access to advanced operating rooms if needed • a personal refrigerator for breast milk storage; • comfortable sleeping accommodations for a partner; • and a jetted tub to soothe and assist mothers-to-be during labor The birthing experience should be a special moment for you and your newborn. Make sure you feel empowered by every decision along the way to welcome your new bundle of joy. Get the experience you wish to have and own your pregnancy.

Now Registering for September 2019!

Our mission: To share the love of Jesus with children, through the Word of God and by providing a safe, nurturing environment in which children can grow and learn. Accepting students 3 and 4 years old by Oct. 1, 2019*

Serving South Jersey families for over 50 years St. John’s Christian Nursery School 149 Ganttown Road • Turnersville, NJ Visit to request an info packet or call 856-227-3722 for more details *Students must be potty-trained to attend.

Build confidence from the start. Science says the foundation for a child’s cognitive growth is rooted in two key factors: a safe environment and learning through guided play. While we’re focused on the serious stuff, your family will be focused on the fun. It’s what we call The Science of SwimPlay®.




just add water. MOUNT LAUREL | 856.316.7200

2036 Briggs Road | Mount Laurel, NJ 08054 |

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14 | July/August 2019

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SUNSET E S F TIVAL C I S U M July 12, 2019 5:30pm - 10:30pm







Rain Date: July 19, 2019

1000 RiverWinds Drive West Deptford, NJ 08086

Calling all Vendors...For info call 609.670.1794

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381 Egg Harbor Road, Suite 2, Sewell, NJ 08090


Cell: 609 .670.1794 Office: 856.582.1200

The SIMILA Group

Each office is independently owned and operated

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