Irving Parent, April 2019

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April 2019 \ FREE

Creative Play









Mary Ellen Caldwell, RD, LD, CLT


COPY EDITOR Francie Morin


have the pleasure of hearing from our readership who so graciously lets us know how much they enjoy our publications, and more importantly, how much our magazines have helped them in some way. One mom told us that our magazine has “a talent” for knowing what our readers need to know. The word talent was what really struck me. I could not help but think of where talent comes from. I was told once that our talent is God’s gift to us, what we do with our talent is our gift back to God. Nothing could be better than that, right? I have also heard it said that your talent and your passion often go hand in hand. You could spend hours focused on your passion (talent) and not realize how much time has passed. Has that ever happened to you? I am passionate about several things. Being a wife and mother tops the list; hmm, is that a talent? I don’t think so, but I am passionate about my family. As a licensed Registered Dietitian, I have always had a passion to help people and families to live healthfully to reduce risks of disease. Of course, now I have a much larger audience to enlighten and advise. So when you come across anything in our magazine having to do with food and nutrition, you can be sure that there was intent and passion in publishing that information for you! Take some time to think of what you are passionate about, and where your talent lies. God created each of us with unique skills and abilities – what’s yours?



COVER PHOTOGRAPHER Misty Stagnone Photography

AD DESIGNERS Alex Canales So Hee Lee Won



ACCOUNTING Carrie Vincent

CONTACT US follow SuburbanParentMag @mecrd

God loves all of us as if there were only one of us. — Saint Augustine




PHONE/MAIL Our Cover Kid

Morgan, 4 yrs Morgan is a sweet, spunky, sassy girl. She loves to feed her dogs Tanner and Titus and help out around the house. She also loves to sing karaoke, do ballet, tap dance, and play with her dolls and stuffed animals. When she grows up, she wants to be a ballerina and a doctor.


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972.887.7779 1333 Corporate Drive Suite 116 Irving, Texas 75038 Suburban Parent and Irving Parent are registered trademarks. Reader correspondence and editorial submissions are welcome. We reserve the right to edit all submissions due to space. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part without express written permission is prohibited.

YOU SHOULD KNOW Finance + Health



BUILD THEIR TALENT & CONFIDENCE With so much focus on academics and therapies, parents often undervalue what after-school activities can do for their special needs children. But they shouldn’t. Extracurricular activities offer opportunities to build the talents their children may have regardless of their special needs. They also provide new and different ways to connect with other kids. They teach skills not taught in the classroom. They help build confidence. And, they can develop lifelong interests. Whether music, art, sports, dance, scouts, or something else; choose an activity that they actively enjoy. This is their time to shine and have fun. For a list of ideas, read more on our website at

Long term stress, such as stress due to finances, can cause spikes in stress hormones. These spikes can lead people to overeat and choose foods higher in fat or sugar. Not surprising then, research finds that those who aren’t stressed about money are more likely to eat healthily. That doesn’t necessarily mean they don’t have money issues; it just means they manage the stress better and don’t let it affect other areas of their life (like their eating habits). Who knew having a financial plan could help with weight loss? Warmth and Compassion A three-decade study found that children with emotionally warm parents grew up to be more compassionate adults. The study followed over 2700 three to 18 year olds from 1980 to 2012. Findings show that while parents’ warmth led to adult compassion in all age groups, it mattered more for younger children compared to adolescents. So give those little ones hugs when they need them. It could have lasting implications on their compassion as grown-ups.

YOUTH BODY IMAGE TEEN TIME Studies show that teens who spend time with their parents have better social skills and higher self-esteem. One study found that time spent with parents doing cultural activities (like discussing books or going on outings) was a better predictor of a teen’s aspirations than time spent together on school activities. Teens are crazy busy at school, we know, but it’s worth spending quality time with them outside of school too. Visit us online at for great ways to give your kids positive, non-school related, attention.


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It’s hard to believe, but studies show that children as young as 5 are experiencing anxiety and unhappiness with their physical appearance. Following mom’s lead, many kids express a desire to be thinner. By age 7, one in four children has attempted dieting behavior. Since kids primarily learn about body image from their parents, we need to watch what we say about ourselves and others. We must put more emphasis on exercise and healthy eating than on weight. And we should remember to focus on people’s inward qualities rather than on their outward appearance.



I want to raise bilingual children. Do I have to understand the second language my child is learning?

No, parents are not required to understand the language their child is learning. The program is designed for each student to grow in their use of a second language through the interaction with native speakers from around the world. We, of course, welcome any parents that would like to learn the language with their children! Investing in language education is a wonderful and bold move, knowing that there is a growing need for a multilingual workforce in their future! Using online programs like ours, you do not have to uproot your family and move to another country to learn a second language; learning comes directly to your home, office or on the go! Amalia Torres \ Happy and Bilingual School



Where do children learn the ‘fear of missing out’? How can the climate at home relieve this fear?

FOMO (fear of missing out) is nothing new. Social psychologists have long documented our desire to be affiliated with other people. Studies have supported that infants as young as eight weeks have the desire to engage socially with others. Today, FOMO is typically attributed to the prevalence of social media. Prior to Facebook, the opportunities for social comparison were limited to the playground or the PTA meeting. Now, parents have unprecedented access to the activities and accomplishments of families in their social circle. Thought leaders in the FOMO-sphere recommend mindfulness practices as well as gratitude journals to help us focus on what we have. With age comes the understanding that “there’s always more to do.” Seraphina’s Dad helped her understand that balance.

Why is ABA the most recognized therapy for children diagnosed on the autism spectrum?

Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is an evidenced-based therapy based on the science of learning and behavior. Therapists have used ABA to help children with autism and related developmental disorders since the early 1960s. Behavior analysis helps us to understand how behavior works, how behavior is affected by the environment, and how learning takes place. ABA therapy applies our understanding of how behavior works to real situations. The goal is to increase behaviors that are helpful and decrease behaviors that are harmful or affect learning. ABA therapy programs can help increase language and communication skills; improve attention, focus, social skills, memory, and academics; and decrease problem/ harmful behaviors. A qualified behavior analyst designs, oversees and customizes the therapy program to each learner’s needs. Kelly Walker \ Clinical Director Behavioral Innovations


How do you choose the best summer camp for your child?

Melissa Gratias, Ph.D. \ International speaker, coaching and consulting, blogger, and author \

Choosing a camp can be an extensive process filled with price and activity comparisons and the ever present “is my child ready” question. As a mom of past campers and a current camp director, I encourage parents to take some time for research and consider their kids’ point of view. Is there a new skill they want to develop or a specific area you want them to grow in? With a better understanding of your child’s hopes and expectations, you can narrow down the list of potential destinations. Consider the long-term effects camp will have on your child in areas such as independence and developing crucial life skills to choose a place they will thrive.

See her book Seraphina Does EVERYTHING! on page 12.

Trish Barnes \ Executive Women’s Director \

Our Experts Melissa Gratias Speaker, coaching, blogger, and author


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Amalia Torres Happy and Bilingual School

Kelly Walker Behavioral Innovations

Trish Barnes Kanakuk Kamps



Fun therapy

PLAYABLE ART BALL The incredible Playable Art Ball is a mesmerizing sensory item that twists and moves to create a wide variety of designs and shapes. This item is perfect for kids, teens, and adults who are highly visual. Using twenty brightly colored 1.5” birch wood balls that are interconnected, you can bend and move them in a variety of directions or take them apart and rearrange the colors. A fun quiet activity that can be taken anywhere! Please note: this item is not recommended for children under three. $29.99.


OFFBEAT A game of rhythm

Moms are always looking for ways to keep their littles protected from scratches, abrasions, burns, bites and splinters. Well, we have you covered moms, check out this award-winning brand! Hypoallergenic, biodegradable strips are crafted from flexible bamboo fiber and imbued with different natural ingredients to soothe, fight infection, and protect. Visit

Can you feel (and keep) the beat? This super fun rhythm and sequence game gets the whole family snapping and clapping together! In this game your mind needs to keep up with your hands, while staying in the right sequence of sounds. Fall off-beat or do the wrong action, you are out of the round! Perfect game for family fun! We found it at, $19.95.

GOOD JOB REWARD CHART Everyone loves rewards – especially kids on the spectrum. This chart helps kids develop, track and earn rewards for their responsibilities and good behavior. The chart features magnetic tiles and stickers corresponding to common household tasks, from “Make the Bed” and “Help with Dinner” to “Do Homework” and more. Kids and parents can track daily progress with the set’s positive accomplishment magnets! We found it at, $24.99, Ages 3 and up.


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FITNESS WALKING By BungyPump Hey, moms and dads! Take some time for yourselves with the BungyPump fitness poles. They can transform a walk or hike into a total body workout that activates 90% of your muscles. BungyPump features built-in suspension and provides smooth and steady resistance every time the poles are pressed down. These poles are made for strengthening not only your legs, but your core and arms as well. $125,

2 years - 1st Grade

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Raising a child in our digital world


A parenting guide for raising responsible, safe, and communicative kids in the digital world; while offering a savvy perspective toward privacy. Mindy shares all the tools she uses to establish family rules for kids of all ages about bullying, respectfulness, privacy and family time. With the use of real cell phone contracts, example allowance agreements, and other tangible solutions to real-life problems, Mindy provides answers to the tough parenting questions in a step-by-step approach. Mindy McKnight \ For Families

Changing the world through words


Readers will meet Mary Anning, who at thirteen unearthed a prehistoric fossil. And Ruby Bridges, the brave six year old who helped end segregation in the South. And Maya Lin, who at twenty-one won a competition to create a war memorial. And those are just a few. All these stories will enthrall and inspire the reader. And you will love the poetry collection too! Susan Hood \ For Families

Teaches life balance for kids ages 7-12


Young Seraphina through her various hobbies, clubs, sports, etc., finds herself overwhelmed and underprepared to succeed in her jam-packed schedule of activities. With a little help from her father, Seraphina learns that being selective about the opportunities she chooses will help her create a beautiful, balanced life. She finds that her activities do not define her, because everything she needs is already within her. Helpful resources for parents and educators! Milissa Gratias \ For families

UNLIKELY FRIENDSHIPS + UNLIKELY LOVES Surprising emotional bonds that exist Unlikely Friendships and Unlikely Loves, reveal the surprising emotional bonds that exist between animals of different species. Ms. Holland has opened our eyes to the rich inner lives of animals, showing us that the power of love and friendship is not for humans only. In Unlikely Heroes, she uncovers and celebrates yet another side of animals that we often think belongs primarily to people—heroism, that indefinable quality of going above and beyond. Like the pod of dolphins who protected swimmers in New Zealand from a great white shark by forming a screen around them. WOW! Jennifer S. Holland \ For Families

A loving memory of a boy


Bob is a boar who loves to play in the mud. When Bob meets Freddy the frog, there is even more fun to be had in the mud with his new friend. That is, until Bob smells corn and gets caught in a hog trap! Bob and Freddy learn about teamwork, friendship, and overcoming obstacles in The Boar Named Bob. This book was written and illustrated in 1992 by ten-year-old Cole Barker. Cole lived his life to the fullest. Cole’s life ended in 2017 at age thirty-five while skiing in the Colorado Rockies. The book was brought to his family by his fifth-grade teacher when she attended his memorial service. Cole Barker \ For Families


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Wear a Smile; it fits all sizes! • Board Certified Pediatric Dentist • Now accepting most PPO, Chip and Medicaid • IV sedation and hospital privileges

Elizabeth Joseph, DDS Pediatric Dental Specialist

972-252-9557 3108 N. MacArthur • Irving, TX 75062

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creative play

let them By Jan Pierce


hen I was eight years old I decided it would be fun to live in a travel trailer. Our family didn’t happen to have one, so I set about building one for myself. I dreamed about parking it near the back of our property and living there, wild and free. I was a logical child, so I started at the beginning. A


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trailer stood on wheels—I’d have to make those first. I found an old saw and some plywood and began trying to saw in a circle. It wasn’t easy, but I hacked out some circle-like things and moved on. Next I’d need the floor of the trailer. I found some two by fours, nails and a hammer and pounded them together in ninety degree angles.

or ahneyr ot tive crearojects p

So far, so good. Then something unimaginable happened. My nasty older cousin came for a visit and found my project. He not only made fun of it, he tore it apart. I had already begun to entertain some self-doubts about my progress, but this loss sent me into wails of despair. And here’s the important part for parents: My mom hadn’t known about my project. All she saw was a little heap of wood. She didn’t realize my creative dreams had just gone up in smoke and she told me to stop making such a fuss. I was heartbroken. What’s the lesson here? Ellen Galinsky’s book, Mind in the Making, talks about encouraging children to take on challenges. It’s an essential life skill. She says, “Life is full of stresses and challenges. Children who are willing to take on challenges instead of avoiding them or simply coping with them do better in school and life.” She encourages parents to support their children when they want to build a lemonade stand, build a fort on the back forty, or run in a 5K race to raise money for a good cause. Why? Because whenever a child is willing to step out and try something, our role as parents is to cheer them on. Such projects build confidence, independence and coping skills for future life challenges. Children don’t always have the words to express the reasons they want to try something big. They just know the dream is there and they want to give it a go. Galinsky also talks about the role stress plays in the lives of both children and adults in our fast-paced daily lives. As adults we develop our own ways of relieving stress, and as parents we need to teach our children to do the same. When parents dwell on the things their children can do, their strengths, the children are empowered to experiment and

create with a stronger sense of well-being. A failed effort doesn’t threaten the child’s confidence. Children with too many “rules” are often worriers—they can’t risk a failure. Those who are encouraged to strike out on their own and try new things are more likely to explore, invent, and see new connections in the process. This child won’t fall apart if things go wrong. This child doesn’t base self-worth on being “right,” but is willing to see where the creative process leads. Another reason to encourage creative play is that the planning and the execution of any project is worthwhile in itself. Consider building a fort. The child has to first envision the completed project, gather materials, work and problem solve along the way, and finally either succeed, partially succeed or fail to complete the project. Sounds a lot like adult work, doesn’t it? And there is value in achieving any measure of success as the project proceeds. The child willing to take on a challenge is also willing to learn through each effort. In the famous children’s book The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner, the four siblings are always depicted as independent thinkers, able to take care of themselves. They work to earn money for food, they cooperate in all the tasks necessary to create a home away from home and they make important decisions based on sound reasoning. Kids love the prospect of that kind of freedom to succeed. As parents, allowing them to take on challenges is our gift to give. So next time your kids want to “build a fort” or embark on any other creative project, here are some ways to support their efforts.

speak encouraging words Whether the project seems doable or not, the effort will be worth your encouragement.

Any positive, encouraging words you offer will make a huge difference to your child’s willingness to try.

provide materials

Whether done indoors or out of doors, there are ways parents can encourage creative projects by merely allowing access to “stuff.” Are your children free to use art supplies, blankets, pillows, toys to build a structure? Are they released to use found objects, scrap wood, and simple tools to create their projects?

allow time and space to do the work without over-managing

While kids sometimes respond well to suggestions from adults, these creative projects should usually be done on their own. They have a plan in mind. Children are often satisfied with a finished product that looks nothing like the house or barn or space craft we might envision. Remember the pretending is a big part of the fun.

expect some messes

Yes, creative play can be messy. There may be rubble to clean up, household items to put away, spilled paints or marks on the floor. There may be a few scrapes and bruises in the midst of creative outdoor projects. As long as there are no major safety issues, the process is worth the cost.

praise the finished project, or the lessons learned along the way

My four little wheel-like pieces and the two by fours nailed together as the beginning of my floor didn’t look like much of anything. But they meant the world to me. All my dreams and creative efforts had been invested in them. I would have been thrilled to hear, “Wow, you

books on success and failure for children

Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty Free Throw: 0 by Jake Maddox The Most Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires The OK Book by Amy Krouse Rosenthal Someday by Eileen Spinelli

for parents

Raising an Entrepreneur: 10 Rules for Nurturing Risk Takers, Problem Solvers and Change Makers by Margot Bishop

put a lot of work into that. Tell me about it.”

failure is an optionand not the end of the creative process

Yes, a failed project is a great learning opportunity. And kids need to learn the important lesson that nothing is gained without the willingness to make mistakes. This might be a great time to read a book about inventors or great thinkers and examine all the “failures” they had on the way to success. Hands-on creative play is worth its weight in gold. It is also hard to find in these days of computer games and screens. So keep your ears open for the creative ideas your children mention. And whatever you do, encourage their plans to take on a challenge.

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[ according to science ]


’m 11 years old and I’m sitting at a long table in the mess hall. The primitive building has cement flooring, a raised ceiling, and enough space to comfortably hold a few hundred kids and dozens of counselors. Just as I am about to ask one of my fellow campers to please pass the ketchup, the sound of conversation and silverware against plates is drowned by the sound of a song. It’s coming from a few tables over. Before the first verse is over, every conversation has ceased. Everyone in the room is singing about the wishy washy washer woman who washes her clothes; “She goes ‘Ooh-aah. Oooh-aah.” Over 25 years later, I still haven’t experienced anything else that instantly puts my brain in the same relaxed, joyful state I experienced while singing at camp. I can’t help but wonder why. Apparently, I’m not the only one wondering what’s behind this phenomenon. According to the experts, it’s not just something in the bug juice.

SINGING CHANGES YOUR MOOD – AND YOUR CELLS Science has actually proved that the act of singing is a natural mood elevator. A 2012 study published by Evolutionary Psychology found that in comparison to simply listening to music, the active performance of music elevated subjects’ endorphin levels, the “feel good” chemicals your body naturally produces.


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Similarly, a 2004 Journal of Behavioral Medicine study found that participants who sang in a choir demonstrated increases in positive mood based on self-reports and, according to saliva samples, higher levels of immune system function than those who simply listened to the choir music. A 2010 study from Music Performance Research also found choir participants self-reported high levels of mood elevation, stress reduction, and psychological well-being as a result of singing. Meanwhile, the benefits of singing are not just for the talented. They also extend to tone-deaf people like me. In fact, a 2002 paper published in Integrative Physiological and Behavioral Science suggests the less serious a singer you are, the more benefits singing can offer you. Researchers found that after a singing lesson, amateurs reported elevated levels of joy and elatedness, while professionals did not. That said, both the pros and the amateurs reported feeling more energetic and relaxed after a singing lesson. Additionally, both groups demonstrated significantly higher oxytocin levels after a singing lesson.

MORE IS MORE We know that singing in the shower or your car makes you feel like a rockstar, and we have the science to prove it. Science also shows us that we may be wired to feel even

By Pam Moore better when we sing in a group – and the bigger the group, the better. A 2016 study published in Evolution and Human Behavior asked participants to provide subjective reports on social bonding and had their pain threshold measurements (representative of their endorphin levels) taken before and after singing for 90 minutes. Subjects either sang in a large group (over 200 people) or a small group (ranging from 20 to 80 people). For both groups, feelings of social connectedness improved. Even more fascinating was that for those in the large group, the improvement was significantly steeper, despite the fact that many of the participants were strangers to one another. Researchers conclude that the group cohesion facilitated by singing is consistent with evolutionary theories highlighting the role of music in social bonding, “particularly in the context of creating larger cohesive groups than other primates are able to manage.” When you’re talking to someone who has never been to camp, it’s hard to explain the connected, joyous high you feel while singing “You’ve Got a Friend” over the sound of crickets, surrounded by fellow campers. They may look at you funny when you say it’s nothing short of a spiritual experience, but you can stand your ground, knowing there is plenty of science to back you up.


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SP Tlight WHY WE LOVE THE GET YOUR ART ON DART CAMPAIGN Art provides challenges for learners at all levels. Art education connects students with their own culture as well as with the wider world.

BEST IN SHOW SARAH THIGPEN 9th Grade Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts \ Dallas ISD

Sarah’s winning artwork themed “My Next Stop is _____” will be recognized as the best out of hundreds of entries! The artwork will be displayed on the side of a DART bus traveling across the agency’s 13-city service area through September; so make sure to look for it! Winner’s artwork will be displayed at the Dallas Museum of Art, Love Field Airport, the Courtyard Theater in Plano and on DART’s website,



Anjali Reddy \ 1st Grade Falak Art Studio, Coppell \ Walnut Grove Elementary School \ Carroll ISD

Diya Vemireddy \ 4th Grade McCoy Elementary Carrollton-Farmers Branch ISD



Olivia Park \ 8th Grade The Hockaday School \ Private, Dallas Dallas Arts Studio, Dallas

Rebeca Treviño \ 11th Grade Yvonne A. Ewell Townview Center Dallas ISD

Want to see more winners? Visit


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Calendar \ April 2019



Featuring a wide range of earthfriendly activities for all to enjoy.

The Art of the Brick 10am-5pm Discover your inner architect in the hands-on, interactive Lego brick gallery Science of the Brick, with building challenges, games, and open play spaces. $7 for members; $10 plus general admission for non-members. Through August 18.Perot Museum, 2201 N Field St, Dallas Mommy and Me Mondays 10am-2pm Join us at the Dallas Arboretum in the Pecan Grove every Monday during Blooms Festival, for facepainting, a petting zoo, and a 12pm interactive performance from KinderMusik. Free with paid admission. 8525 Garland Rd, Dallas



Watch and cheer as live camel, ostrich and zebra races return to Lone Star Park. The exotic animal races will be run on the main track between regularly scheduled Thoroughbred races.


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Away from the White House – Presidential Retreats 9am-5pm Come see this special exhibit exploring presidential retreats. These four featured retreats – Camp David in Frederick County, MD, Prairie Chapel Ranch in Crawford, TX, LBJ Ranch in Stonewall, TX, and Walker’s Point in Kennebunkport, ME – will be highlighted in-depth. $19 general admission; free for members. Through 10/7. George W. Bush Presidential Center, 2943 SMU Boulevard, Dallas

WEDNESDAY 3 Dallas Blooms—Life’s a Picnic 9am-5pm This spring festival favorite features an extraordinary,

larger-than-life, picnic scene topiary comprised of a stunning 40-footby-40-foot picnic blanket, vase of flowers, picnic basket with pie and a giant picnic ant. Go online to check out the full schedule of activities and family fun all season. Free with general admission: $15 adults; $10 kids ages 3–12. $3 for children’s garden. Through April 7. 8525 Garland Rd, Dallas

THURSDAY 4 JumpstART Stories & Art – Colors! 10-11am Every firth Thursday of the month, explore new stories and fun art projects during JumpstART, a creative story time that combines art and children’s literature. Create a take-home art project with your kids as part of this fun and free morning activity. For kids ages 2 and older. All supplies are provided, and the galleries are open for viewing afterward. Call to register groups of 10 or more. Free. 3333 N MacArthur Blvd, Irving www. Cool Thursdays – King George 7:30-9:30pm Grab a nice spot on the Martin Rutchnick Lawn for a concert against the backdrop of the garden and White Rock Lake. Gates open at 6 p.m. The garden closes at the end of the concert. Picnic baskets with food and your choice of drinks are permitted. In the event of inclement weather, concerts will be moved inside to Rosine Hall. King George pays tribute to the music of George Strait. Tickets start at $29. Dallas Arboretum, 8525 Garland Rd, Dallas

FRIDAY 5 FREE Irving Friends and Family Game Night 6-8:30pm. Come play games and celebrate the rich heritage and diversity of Irving as part of our 12th Annual Celebrating Irving: The City and The Man 2019 festivities. Lively Pointe Youth Center, 909 North O’Connor Rd, Irving. For more info and events, call 972-252-3838 or visit Day Out with Thomas – The Steam Team Tour 10:15am Enjoy a 25-minute train ride with a life-sized Thomas the Tank Engine and a full day of activities and entertainment including live stage performances, magic shows, a huge model train layout, arts & crafts, and the Island of Sodor Sandbox FunDig. Tickets from $21. The train runs April 5–7 AND 12–14. Tickets are available online or toll free at 866/4687630. Grapevine Vintage Railroad, 707 S Main St, Grapevine www. Deep Ellum Arts Festival 11am-11pm Friday and Saturday. Six blocks of Main Street in the Deep Ellum entertainment district will be transformed into one enormous street festival. Featuring 200 decorative and visual artists, 100 bands, singer/songwriters, and more well as other specialized fine artists. Hours on Sunday, April 7: 11am–8pm. This is an ADULT-oriented visual and performing arts festival. Supervised children and teenagers are welcome during the day. Free. 2900-3400 Main Street, Deep Ellum

Schoolhouse Rock Live Jr. 5-6pm Head to Artisan Children’s Theater to watch this musical based on the ever-popular, award-winning 1970s cartoons, this fast-paced musical teaches lessons with clever, catchy tunes.. Run time: 55 minutes..$11 adults; $7 children. Discounts for groups of 15 or more. Through April 27. 444 E Pipeline Rd, Hurst

SATURDAY 6 Citywide Egg Hunt 9:30-11:30am. Irving’s Parks and Recreation Department invites families to a free fun event featuring more than 20,000 eggs, petting zoo and photo opportunities with the Easter Bunny. Heritage Park 217-Main St, Irving. 972-721-2501 IrvingEvents. org. See ad in this issue. Scarborough Renaissance Festival 10am-7pm You will discover a 35acre recreation of an English village with a festival of entertainment, artisans, food, magic and merriment. Enjoy full combat jousting and birds of prey exhibitions, a Mermaid Lagoon and more. Discover 200 shops of exquisite crafts and amazing artisan demonstrations. Experience Knighting ceremonies, a Grande Parade, Renaissance rides, games of skill and more. Through May 27. 2511 FM 66, Waxahachie ColorPalooza 10am-7pm ColorPalooza is designed to showcase the rich cultural, artistic and eco-friendly spirit of Lewisville and will feature a wide variety of exhibits and interactive events for the whole family. There will be an emphasis on interactive events for children, including inflatable play structures and creative arts and crafts stations. Festival admission is free, although some activities might carry a nominal charge. Visit the website for a complete schedule of events. Old Town Lewisville, 155 W. Main St., Lewisville Mamou Cajun Festival 10am-6pm Get ready to party hearty, creole-style, as the Annual Cajun Festival cooks up big fun at Traders Village for a another great weekend of fun and delicious Cajun food. The event will be held

under the Big Red Patio next to the rides and family entertainment area. Enjoy free toe-tapping Cajun music each day starting at 12 noon. It’s an event that can’t be missed. Live music, dancing, Cajun foods, and bodacious bargains guarantee there’ll be ‘Big Fun on the Bayou’. 2602 Mayfield Rd, Grand Prairie Free First Saturday’s at Nasher 11am-1pm Look, learn and love your time at the Nasher every first Saturday of the month. Bring the whole crew to create, discover and make new memories together. Each month features a rotating schedule of things to see and do. Use your observation skills to investigate art in the galleries. Free admission and activities. 2001 Flora St, Dallas

SUNDAY 7 Tuck Everlasting 1:30-3pm What if you could live forever? What if you were asked to keep a shocking secret? Young Winnie Foster suddenly finds herself faced with these dilemmas when she ventures from her routine one single summer morning. What she encounters at the foot of a magnificent tree in the woods on her family’s land brings her face to face with monumental life choices. Tickets start at $23. Dallas Children’s Theater, 5938 Skillman St, Dallas

MONDAY 8 Mommy and Me Mondays 10am-2pm Join us at the Dallas Arboretum in the Pecan Grove every Monday during Blooms Festival, for facepainting, a petting zoo, and a 12pm interactive performance from KinderMusik. Free with paid admission. 8525 Garland Rd, Dallas

TUESDAY 9 Music and Stories with Kids Works at Klyde Warren Park 11am-12pm Bring your little ones and join Miss Kimberly for an hour full of music, movement and fun stories every Tuesday. Free. Klyde Warren Park, 2012 Woodall Rodgers Freeway Dallas www.

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First Baptist Church of Irving

Christian Montessori Based School

Children’s Discovery Center

3 to 6 Year Olds • Full Day Offered • Before & After School Care

Established in 1977 • Art and Music Classes • Enrichment Classes • Bible and Chapel • Science and Spanish • Motor Development Class




Preview Morning at The Highlands School 8:30-10am. For PreK3 – 12th Grade. RSVP to Admissions@ 1451 East Northgate Drive, Irving, 972-5541980, See ad in this issue.

Taste of Irving 12-6pm. A feast-ival of food and fun with more than 20 food and dessert vendors, free activities for children, culinary demonstrations, and live music. Cimarron Park Recreation Center. Free admission and free shuttles from Barbara Bush Middle School, 515 Cowboys Pkwy, Irving. 972-721-2501 See ad in this issue.


Now enrolling for Fall 2019 “He does it with his hands, by experience, first in play and then through work.” — Maria Montessori (The Absorbent Mind)

Celebrating 40 Years

Traditional Montessori Curriculum Montessori Trained Teachers 403 South Main St, Irving 972-653-0360 •

Ready, Set, BUILD! 7-8pm It’s free play LEGO time! A come-and-go building event for families. *DUPLO building bricks provided for attendees 4 years and under.* For ages 18 months & up. Valley Ranch Library, 401 Cimarron Trail Irving Dallas International Film Festival This year the festival is Celebrating the Past, Present and Future of Film. Most of the festival will take place at the Magnolia, in West Village. See the website for a complete schedule. Individual tickets start at $12. Through April 18. 3699 McKinney Ave, Dallas

FRIDAY 12 Arts in Bloom 5-10pm During the event the streets of downtown McKinney come alive with fascinating sights and sounds as fine artists, dancers, performance artists, musicians, Texas wineries, and food vendors take part in the three-day celebration. See website for daily hours. Through April 14. 111 N Tennessee St, McKinney www. Zorro the Musical 7:30-9pm This legendary story of good versus evil has been a source of enduring fascination and has been the subject of a best selling novel by producer Isabel Allende. Zorro the Musical retells the dramatic tale of a romantic hero with spectacular sword-fighting and incredible magic – all set to the famous red-hot Gipsy King beat brought to the stage with the authentic colors of traditional flamenco. Through May 11. Tickets from $14. 444 E Pipeline Rd, Hurst


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Spring Into Nash 10am-2pm Experience what life was like when the city’s earliest settlers made their home in Grapevine. Activities at the 18th annual Spring Into Nash include heritage toys, kitchen gardening, cotton planting, farm animals, tractor-drawn wagon rides, field cultivation, wood carving demonstrations, jump rope making, wood-burning stove cooking demonstrations and blacksmith demonstrations. Free admission. 626 Ball St, Grapevine Meadows Museum Family Day 10am-1pm Come to this free Family Day at the Meadows Museum in Dallas to explore paintings by Spanish painter Mariano Fortuny, his friends, and the artists he knew and influenced. Enjoy hands-on art activities for tots to teens, a museum-wide scavenger hunt, and healthy snacks. This program is part of Founders’ Day weekend activities across the SMU campus. Free. 5900 Bishop Blvd, Dallas www. Funny Bunny Festival 9:30-12:30pm Hop on over to Lone Star Toyota of Lewisville Railroad Park for an egg-cellent time at the Funny Bunny Festival. You will be able to take a ride on the Boogie Woogie Choo Choo train, snuggle up with some lovable animals from our petting zoo, pose for a picture with Mr. or Mrs. Funny Bunny and of course – fill your Easter basket with lots of goodies from our sponsor/ vendor tables and egg hunts. Free. 1301 S Railroad St, Lewisville www. Food Truck Rally 2-6pm Kick off spring with Klyde Warren Park’s second annual food truck rally. Meet on the Ginsburg


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TIME OUT Family Great Lawn and enjoy an amazing array of culinary treats from more than 25 of the best food trucks and carts in the Metroplex. This daylong, family-friendly event will feature contests and activities, giant games on the lawn and great live music. Free. 2012 Woodall Rodgers Fwy, Dallas Turtle Creek Arts Festival 10am-5pm The festival will showcase approximately 100 local and regional artists and crafters of all disciplines at the historic park that’s just steps away from the Katy Trail. The festival is open to all ages and dogs are welcome. Also Sunday, 4/14, from 11am-5pm. Free. Reverchon Park, 3505 Maple Ave, Dallas Arts District Block Party 6pm-12am The Block Party Series brings the crowds to the street for a free community extravaganza. In collaboration with Arts District partners, the festivities include food truck fare, local brews, family-friendly games, pop-up and featured performances by local and national artists, photo booth, community mural, and much more! Free. Bishop Arts District, Oak Cliff

SUNDAY 14 Dallas Pizza Fest 12-9pm Get your fill of delicious pizza at the second annual Dallas Pizza Fest featuring more than 20 local and national pizza parlors. There will be a pizza eating contest, celebrity pizza chefs, live music and entertainment, kids bounce land, and a wine and beer garden. Pre-sale tickets are $10 for adults ($7 for children) and include a slice of pizza. Deep Ellum, 3200 Commerce St, Dallas Texas Rangers 5k 7:30-10am Lace up for a family-friendly 1K or scenic 5K through Arlington’s entertainment district and finish on the field at Globe Life Park. The start line is located at the Toyota Home Plate Gate entrance, on the corner of Nolan Ryan Expressway and Road To Six Flags. The finish line will on the field of Globe Life Park. There will be a post-race celebration, which


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includes complimentary food and beverage. Each participant will receive one upper reserved ticket voucher for Rangers 2019 regular season home game. See website for more information. $30 for 1K; $40 for 5K. Life Park, 1000 Ballpark Way, Arlington

MONDAY 15 Dallas Farmers Market 11am-7pm Come visit the 26,000 square foot food hall and artisanal vendor market. Open daily. 920 S Harwood, Dallas

TUESDAY 16 Imagination Playground at Klyde Warren Park 10am-12pm Bring the kids to Klyde Warren Park where they can build a new world every time they play using the larger-than-life Imagination Playground blocks. Free Klyde Warren Park, Ginsburg Family Great Lawn, 2012 Woodall Rodgers Freeway, Dallas

WEDNESDAY 17 Poet Tree 10am-9pm Throughout National Poetry Month in April, allow your creativity to flourish by writing your own verses on a “leaf.” Next, place the leaf on the Poet Tree, which is “planted” in the interior glassed-in area of the library. All ages. Free. Through April 30. Valley Ranch Library, 401 Cimarron Trail Irving

THURSDAY 18 Cool Thursdays – Asleep at the Wheel 7:30-9:30pm Grab a nice spot on the Martin Rutchnick Lawn for a concert against the backdrop of the garden and White Rock Lake. Gates open at 6 p.m. The garden closes at the end of the concert. Guests are encouraged to arrive early, bring low-to-theground chairs and blankets as no seating is provided. Picnic baskets with food and your choice of drinks

Open 7 days a week • 10am to 10pm • are permitted. Tickets start at $29. Dallas Arboretum, 8525 Garland Rd, Dallas

FRIDAY 19 EarthX Expo 10am-6pm The EarthX Expo features a wide range of earth-friendly activities for all to enjoy such as interactive scavenger hunts, an Outdoor Adventure Zone including scuba diving and tree climbing, film, virtual reality, Goat Yoga, EarthxSolar, Tiny Homes showcase, education competitions, a Green Auto Show and more. General admission: Pre-register online to receive free admission. $5 at the gate or after March 31. Through April 28. Fair Park, 3921 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd, Dallas Easter Weekend at the Dallas Arboretum 9am-5pm Easter weekend is full of Eggstraordinary egg-citement, and eggs-ploration. Come to the Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden for a weekend full of Egg-themed programs including an Egg-streme Scavenger Hunt. Stop by the Plant Lab for a special Eggsquisite Egg dying Egg-sperience using plant-based dyes. The plant lab will be doing Egg-speriments every hour on the hour from 11am3pm. Be sure to reserve your lab seat online before they are gone! Appropriate for ages 5 years and up. Through Sunday, April 21. 8525 Garland Rd, Dallas

SATURDAY 20 Dallas Children’s Theater Activities at Klyde Warren Park 10:30-11:30am Bring your drama princess or prince to the Children’s Park for acting games and fun with DCT. Join in on the fun! Dallas Children’s Theater will lead activities in the Children’s Park - meet at the learning tree! Klyde Warren Park. Free. 2012 Woodall Rodgers Freeway, Dallas CityLine Live 6-9pm CityLine Live music series returns to CityLine this Spring. Every Friday and Saturday from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. during April and

May, the Plaza will be filled with live music from local artists, where guests can listen from a State Street restaurant patio or grab a to-go dinner and bring a lawn chair to enjoy the festivities in the Plaza. CityLine Live will be BYOB, dog-friendly, and kid-friendly. The series will take place in CityLine Plaza, next to the Aloft Hotel and Good Union Urban BBQ. The full lineup is available on the event website. Free. CityLine, 1230 State St., Richardson www. Under the Sea Easter Adventure 10am-12pm Egg hunters collect as many eggs as possible in the time allowed from the leisure pool at Don Rodenbaugh Natatorium. Bags will be given to participants to collect eggs. There will also be the opportunity to get Easter Bunny photos and treats. Register by age group, and please arrive 15 minutes early. Swim attire is required, and ages 6 and under must have a parent in the water. $10. 110 Rivercrest Blvd, Allen




8350 N MacArthur Blvd #100 • Irving 972 402 9799

7927 Forest Ln • Dallas 972 392 2272

Easter Bunny Trains 2:20pm and 4:20pm Hop aboard the Grapevine Vintage Railroad for a family-friendly train excursion featuring a special appearance by the Easter Bunny and candy for the kids. These excursions depart from Grapevine at the Cotton Belt Depot. The ride lasts approximately one hour, perfect for those younger conductors. This trip does not travel to the Fort Worth Stockyards. Admission is $14 for all ages. 707 S Main St, Grapevine

MONDAY 22 Earth Fest: An Earth and Arbor Day Celebration 5-7:30pm Get tips on how to live a Green Life, visit with environmentally conscious vendors and enjoy performances by community arts groups as the City of Cedar Hill celebrates Earth Day and Arbor Day. Free. Cedar Hill Government Center, 285 Uptown Blvd., Cedar Hill

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TIME OUT Birthdays


TUESDAY 23 Crayola Experience 10am-8pm Come experience 22 hands-on attractions inspired by Crayola products and their technologies. Visitors can name and wrap their own Crayola crayon, star in a coloring page, create melted wax spin-art, and learn how crayons are made in a live factory show. General admission is $20.99 at the door or $18.99 online. Annual passes are $30.99. Kids under three are free. Crayola Experience at the Shops of Willowbend Mall, 6121 W Park Blvd Suite A100, Plano www.

WEDNESDAY 24 Demi \ 9 April 1

Joe \ 5 April 2

Katalina \ 2 April 5

Nathan \ 2 April 13


Upload your Birthday Kids picture @ Submit by 10th of the month prior to their birthday.


Wednesday Night Live: Circus Smirkus 7-7:45pm Enjoy a fun magical circus show with hand and marionette puppets, circus magic and music! There is a unicycle riding monkey, a juggling clown, and an elephant splashing with joy for doing tricks. For children of all ages. Free. Valley Ranch Library, 401 Cimarron Trail Irving

THURSDAY 25 Cool Thursdays – The Molly Ringwalds 7:30-9:30pm Grab a nice spot on the Martin Rutchnick Lawn for a concert against the backdrop of the garden and White Rock Lake. Gates open at 6 p.m. The garden closes at the end of the concert. Guests are encouraged to arrive early, bring low-to-the-ground chairs and blankets as no seating is provided. Picnic baskets with food and your choice of drinks are permitted. Tickets start at $29. Dallas Arboretum, 8525 Garland Rd, Dallas

FRIDAY 26 Let Me Be Myself: The Life Story of Anne Frank 1-3pm Let Me Be Myself tells the story of Anne Frank in a modern way, addressing current day issues of identity, exclusion, and discrimination. Free with admission.

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Through August 2019. Dallas Holocaust Museum, 211 N Record St #100, Dallas

SATURDAY 27 Celebrate Arbor Day 2019 10am-2pm. Concert, children activities, tree experts, tree climbing demonstrations, vendor exhibits, snake humorist show. Free tree seedlings while supplies last. Heritage Park, 217 Main St, Irving. 972-721-2501 See ad in this issue. Extreme Racing 2:30-6pm Watch and cheer as live camel, ostrich and zebra races return to Lone Star Park. The exotic animal races will be run on the main track between regularly scheduled Thoroughbred races. “Bets” on the extreme races raise funds for local non-profits. Kids can have fun with bounce houses, petting zoo and pony rides from 1 to 6 p.m. General admission to the first level of the grandstand is $5, $3 for children ages 4-12. Lone Star Park, 1000 Lone Star Pkwy, Grand Prairie extreme-racing White Rock Home Tour 12-5pm Get your tickets for the fourth annual White Rock Home Tour featuring six mid-century modern and contemporary modern homes. You can start the tour at the Hexter Cafe to buy your tickets and/or to pick-up your online tickets. Or you can start your tour at any of our homes if you already have your paper ticket. Tour homes are located around East Dallas. Tickets are $15 in advance/$20 weekend of tour (children 12 and under are free). Also Sunday, 4/28. Plano Artfest 11am-9pm Plano Artfest is a free community event featuring a week of community art programming that culminates in a two-day festival in the Downtown Plano Arts District. The festival features live music, contemporary art installations, performances from local arts groups, a makers market of craftsman and artisans, family chalk art, a kids zone with bounce houses and more.

Free. 1037 E 15th St, Plano www.

SUNDAY 28 The 7th Annual Dallas Food Truck Palooza & Music Festival 11am-6pm Sample eats and treats from up to 15 North Texas premier food trucks — including Easy Sliders, Ruthies Rolling Café, Butcher’s Son and more — while you sit in the shade and enjoy live music by local artists. Children can have fun in the Kids Zone with bounce houses, face painting, balloon creations and more, all included in price of admission. Wine and beer will be available for purchase. No pets allowed. $6 admission (free for children 3 and younger). There will be a multi-winner raffle with exciting prizes and so much more! Tickets start at $6. Temple Shalom, 6930 Alpha Rd, Dallas

MONDAY 29 Mommy and Me Mondays 10am-2pm Join us at the Dallas Arboretum in the Pecan Grove every Monday during Blooms Festival, for facepainting, a petting zoo, and a 12pm interactive performance from KinderMusik. Free with paid admission. 8525 Garland Rd, Dallas

TUESDAY 30 The Art of the Brick 10am-5pm The Art of the Brick is a critically acclaimed traveling exhibition comprising the world’s largest and most elaborate display of pieces constructed using only Lego bricks. Plus, discover your inner architect in the hands-on, interactive Lego brick gallery Science of the Brick, with building challenges, games, and open play spaces. $7 for members; $10 plus general admission for non-members. Through August 18. Perot Museum, 2201 N Field St, Dallas Please note: Although we strive to bring you the most current information available regarding event dates & times, confirming with the event venue before going is always a good idea.

Now Enrolling for Summer & Fall 2019 School Year

Summer: Ages 6 weeks to 11 years Fall: Ages 6 weeks to 5 years Tues & Thurs 9am-2:20pm

FREE Public Charter School, Manara Academy International Baccalaureate (IB) Instruction, STEM Education, Pre-K, Daily Foreign Language and Expeditionary Learning

Ranked as A Top Performing Charter School in DFW

Join our PreK-12 Student Crew 8201 Tristar Drive Irving, TX 75063 469-472-9558

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FUN STUFF Be creative


QUESTION Of course we are happy for Spring. But then again, there are the creepy crawlies that come out to play. So we asked kids...

WHICH BUG DO YOU LOVE THE MOST? • Ants. They work hard, and all the other bugs are like, “How come you guys are always working?” — Clay, age 6 • Hmmm. Mostly I like birds and butterflies. Not bugs. Try asking my brother! — Tanya, age 8 • June Bugs. They seem like they are kind of nice. Like, they don’t bug anyone. — Andy, age 6 • Bumblebees. I am not afraid of them. People think they will sting you, but they are way too busy, busy, to worry about you. — Sienna, age 7 • Worms. I like worms, but they don’t have faces, so that’s kind of weird. — Angel, age 7 • No Bites! I like bugs that don’t bite. — Timothy, age 6

Easter basket grass that is! We came across a fun project for Easter Baskets! Fill some Easter baskets with dirt and quick growing grass seed. Start at the beginning of the month and by Easter you’ll have baskets full of beautiful Easter grass. No more fake stuff; watching wheatgrass grow in a sunny spot will amaze your kids. And you too! You can find potting soil, quick grass seeds and plastic plant saucers in the gardening department of most stores. We found it on Pinterest! Learn more there.

GOTTA LOVE ‘EM One of my kindergarten students kept introducing herself this way: “Hi, I’m Zach’s sister.” I told her that her new friends needed to know her name. Then the schools director came in the classroom, recognized her and said “Aren’t you Zach’s sister?” And she replied, “NO, I’m me!”













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Yeah, get your Mediterranean mood on with a fresh salad, and don’t forget to include a side of pita and hummus – maybe even some falafel. There are tons of recipes out there, but know the basics for this simple chopped salad are: cucumbers, tomatoes, bell peppers, red onion, fresh herbs (think parsley and mint), lemon juice, and of course, olive oil (it’s Mediterranean!). Optional: include some crumbled feta, toasted pine nuts and chickpeas.


The Fruits of the Holy Spirit is a biblical term that sums up the attributes of a person or community. There are 12: Charity, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Generosity, Gentleness, Faith, Modesty, Self-Control, and Chastity.

RIGHT ON TIME You may want to consider meal times for a child with ASD. Creating a routine of serving meals at the same time every day may be helpful and less stressful for your child (and you). Let him/her know what time it is when you prepare the meal. If you are concerned about your child’s nutrition, consider a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist. They can answer your questions and provide guidance for making sure your child is eating well.


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THANK YOUR GUSTATORY That’s science lingo for taste RECEPTOR buds! Our taste buds perceive four basic tastes: sweet, salty, CELLS sour, and bitter. One of their functions is to keep your body from unsafe food chemicals. There are tiny taste hairs that check out food chemicals in your saliva. When these taste hairs are stimulated, they send nerve impulses to your brain. So if you ate poisonous or rotten food, you would most likely spit them out immediately – that way you stop them from entering your stomach.

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