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Sharon Sevedge 573-729-3199 路 573-247-1627 607 West Glendale St. Salem, MO 65560

The winter ends with March, and end comes Spring. March can either feel wintry or springy, with as many blustery, windy days as there are mild, sunny days. POPULAR BELIEFS in MARCH We often hear that "March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb." This means that the first day of March is often stormy, and the last day is mild and warm. MARCH QUOTE The year's at the spring And day's at the morn; ... God's in His heaven-All's right with the world! Source - Robert Browning The bloodstone and aquamarine are the birthstones for March. The violet is the flower for the month of March. Note: Magazine Message information obtained in part from Barbara's Entourage

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Sharon Sevedge 573-729-3199 573-247-1627 Visit My Site Email Me 607 West Glendale St. Salem, MO 65560

Welcome Home! Table of Contents 4

Recipe And Design A tasty recipe and a stylish home design how to.


Backpacks: How To Get The Right One The lowdown on finding your perfect pack.


Homework: Drudgery to Do-able.

Make homework manageable at last!

In The Kitchen. Krispy Apple Treats that are sure to be a big Back-to-school hit!.

Welcome Home is for entertainment purposes only. This magazine is not intended to solicit other brokersʼ listings. If you are currently working with another broker, please disregard this information.


Health and Wellness. What is Pilates and why is it so amazing? 9

10 - 11

Are You Too Old To Back To School?

12 - 14

Drowning In Debt?

Traditionally school has been for the your, but that’s changing!

5 tips for college students and recent college grads. 15 - 17 Why Private School? A look at the benefits. 18 - 19

Back To School - Back To Reality Get your To Do list done, without losing your mind!

20 - 21 Products To Love! Hot trends, technological wonders of tomorrow and so much more! 22 -23 City Spotlight New York, NY. Welcome to The Big Apple! 24 DYI Project - August Check out this awesome DIY Braided Hex Nut bracelet! 25 Businesses That Make A Difference Hershey, A sweet company with an even sweeter mission.

All pictures courtesy of or unless otherwise noted. Thanks to Wikipedia for Random Fact information and aid.

Editor in Chief - Phly Jambor The information provided in this publication of Welcome Home or on any website maintained by U.S. Cybertek, Inc. or any of its subsidiaries, divisions, affiliates, agents, representatives, licensors, licensees or employees (collectively Publisher) is intended as a general guide illustrating common methods of common practices, and the publisher makes no warranty or guarantee whatsoever of the safety, effectiveness, or other characteristic of any methods or products described herein. Neither does the Publisher assume any liability for information published in any website or other publication to which reference may be made herein. Readers are cautioned to review and comply with all written instructions, safety bulletins, and other materials provided in connection with any of the products mentioned herein and all products used in connection with any of the methods described. Neither Published nor any of its subsidiaries, divisions, affiliates, agents, representatives, licensors, licensees or employees shall in any case be liable to you or anyone else for any loss or injury or any direct, indirect, incidental, consequential, special punitive or similar damages arising out of your use of or failure to use any of the methods and/ or products described in this publication or any other publication or websites to which reference may be made herein. Publisher disclaims all warranties, and any warranty or guarantee of safety, merchantability, or fitness for any particular purpose lies solely with the manufacture(s) of any product described or recommended or used used in connection with any methods described or recommended.

Recipe and Design Grilled Tomato-Peach Pizza

Ingredients • • • • • • • •

Vegetable cooking spray 2 tomatoes, sliced 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 large peach, peeled and sliced 1 pound bakery pizza dough 1/2 (16-oz.) package fresh mozzarella, sliced 4 to 6 fresh basil leaves Garnishes: coarsely ground pepper, olive oil

Preparation: 1. Coat cold cooking grate of grill with cooking spray, and place on grill. Preheat grill to 350° (medium) heat. 2. Sprinkle tomatoes with salt; let stand 15 minutes. Pat tomatoes dry with paper towels. 3. Grill peach slices, covered with grill lid, 2 to 3 minutes on each side or until grill marks appear. 4. Place dough on a large baking sheet coated with cooking spray; lightly coat dough with cooking spray. Roll dough to 1/4-inch thickness (about 14 inches in diameter). Slide pizza dough from baking sheet onto cooking grate. 5. Grill, covered with grill lid, 2 to 3 minutes or until lightly browned. Turn dough over, and reduce temperature to 250° to 300° (low) heat; top with tomatoes, grilled peaches, and mozzarella. Grill, covered with grill lid, 5 minutes or until cheese melts. Arrange basil leaves over pizza. Serve immediately. Garnish, if desired. Southern Living AUGUST 2010

Wall Art Project: Pinwheels

What You Need: • • • • • •

14 sheets of 12x12-inch paper Crafts glue Clothespins Scissors/crafts knife Cutting mat Ribbon to hang or adhesive

Instructions: 1. Check out your local crafts store for scrapbook paper varieties. (We like double-sided papers.) Choose three different patterns within a similar color palette. Two identical scrapbook papers make one art "wheel." 2. On a cutting mat, lay out your papers, cutting off the brand end tag with a scissors or crafts knife using a ruler edge to guide you. Make your first 1-inch-wide fold on a sheet. (It doesn't matter on which side you start because the paper should be square.) Fold the paper back and forth, accordion-style. Editor Tip: Add interest to your display by mixing smaller pinwheels with the larger ones. For tiny wheels, cut your accordion-folded strips in half or smaller. 3. Fold the finished accordion strip in half and glue two sides together. Compress under a pile of old books for about 20 minutes. 4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 on the same patterned scrapbook paper. Once the glue has dried, pull apart the accordion to make two fans. Glue the two fans together, securing for an hour with clothespins. Courtesy of Better Homes and

Backpacks: How To Get The Right One Choosing a backpack for school isn’t that hard. In fact, if you know what you want, it’s not that hard at all. When you’re choosing your backpack for school, there are some things that you should look into before you go out and buy one. You’ll be amazed at some of the features that some of the backpacks have to offer. I’m going to show you a few tips you can use in order to find the perfect backpack for yourself. I’ll explain how some of the options work and the important things that you need to look at in order to get the perfect backpack. There are tons of options:Almost think of a backpack as a car. I know, a backpack isn’t going to cost you $20,000 but there are a lot of cool options that you should be aware of when you’re looking for your backpack. Some of the options that you will find will be things such as side pockets, mp3 player holders, pen/pencil holders, cell phone holder, dividers and so many more. These are just a few of the main options that you may be interested in. In my personal opinion, I think the coolest features that one of my backpacks had been a divider. This divider in particular would sort all of my classes. I could put my folder and book in each divider, so that when I went into my backpack, I would already have it all organized. This would save me the trouble of having to look for my books all the time. Look at the comfort factor If you buy a backpack just because it’s on clearance for $20, you may

be in a world of hurt down the road. What do I mean by this? You soon may find out that this backpack will start hurting your back or shoulders because of the lousy straps that the backpack has. I can’t stress this enough but your straps are the most important part of your backpack. You’ll want straps that are either gelled or padded greatly. This way, when you use them, you’ll be able to support your shoulders and avoid backpack. Obviously, the more items you put in your backpack, the more potential there is to hurt your back. So many styles In today’s world, there are so many creative minds out there. From wheeled backpacks, to over the shoulder backpack, there are many to choose from. Make sure that you’re aware of all of the backpacks out there. When you’re aware of them all, make sure you know which one will work for you. If you already have a bad back, you may want to choose a wheeled backpack. If you want something light, you’ll want to possibly choose an over the shoulder one. Do your research and you should be able to find one that suits your needs. With so many backpacks out there, it’s no wonder why it’s hard to choose the right one. If you follow some of my advice, I’m sure you’ll find the perfect college backpack for yourself. Written by Tom Tessin. Courtesy of

Homework: Drudgery to Do-able School is back in session, which means your child is back in the homework grind. Homework is an essential part to broadening your child’s educational experience to prepare them for their life, but what good does it do when most children aren’t motivated to get it done. Their lack of motivation can cause problems for them in school and beyond. While your child may still see homework as an unpleasant chore, there are some things you can do to help make this experience a more acceptable one for them. Here’s some ways you can help them make the most of their homework time: Give them space - Dedicate an area in your home for homework purposes. It should be a spot that is as quiet as possible without the distractions of television, radio, etc. Your child needs to be able to focus on the task at hand,

so eliminating as many distractions as possible will be necessary. Support “their time” - If you have other children or adults in the home while homework time is going on, make sure that everyone else knows and understands that the child needs quiet and should have no interruptions. Keep others away from the space you’ve provided for their homework purposes. Your child needs to know that you will support their need to focus on their work. Remain nearby - Even though they need quiet time with no distractions, you will still need to be nearby in case they run into some problems and need some help. Don’t let them wander through the house looking for you when they want help as there can be too many distractions along the way. Let them know periodically that you, or someone else, is nearby if they have any questions.

Stick to a schedule - Homework time should be at the same time every day that they have it. Of course, life happens and this doesn’t always work out the way you want it to, but try to keep homework time at about the same time each day. Eventually, it will become routine to them and you won’t have to constantly remind them to do it. Stock up on supplies - If possible; keep extra supplies like pens, pencils, notebooks etc. within their homework space. This will help eliminate some of the many excuses you will receive, in the beginning, about why they can’t complete their homework. Know what their homework is- This will be a hard one for some parents as some children won’t be as willing to offer up that information to them. Try as much as you can

to find out what it is and ask to see their work when their done, to ensure each assignment is completed. Make your homework assistance a positive one- This is important. Each time they ask you or someone else for help, it needs to always be a positive experience. Never let the child feel as if they’re dumb because they came up with the wrong answer. Use encouraging words and phrases, such as, “You almost have it”, or “That was so close!” Negative responses will probably turn them off from asking anyone for help in the future; including from a teacher, so don’t let that happen. Homework is always seen as drudgery to most children. If you keep these tips in mind and use as many as possible for your child, homework could become a more do-able thing for them to include within their day. Written by Aurelia WIlliams. Courtesy of

In The Kitchen Directions: 1.


Krispy Apple Treats Ingredients: 6 C. Krispy Rice Cereal 1 pkg. large marshmallows 3 T. butter 1 small pkg. Jell-o powder, cherry or strawberry flavor • 25 small Tootsie Roll Candies • Royal Icing, tinted green • Baking spray • Wax Paper • Red Food Coloring, optional optional: you could use fruit roll-ups or those green mint leaf candies instead of the royal icing. • • • •

3. 4.



Place marshmallows and butter in large microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high for 2 minutes. Stir and microwave for an additional minute. Remove from microwave and stir in jell-o powder. If desired, you can add a few drops of red food coloring (depending on how "red" your jell-o is).

Add Krispy Rice cereal and stir well. Spray hands with baking spray and roll mixture into balls (a little larger than a golf ball) and drop on wax paper. After balls have set for a few minutes, use your thumb to press into the top to make an "apple" shape. Add a small tootsie roll "stem" and using royal icing (or any green candy), pipe on a "leaf". I actually would have rather used some kind of green candy but didn't have any on hand. I just used royal icing and a leaf-shaped icing tip.

Courtesy of

Health & Wellness

PILATES Joseph Pilates, born in Germany in the late 1800's, spent most of his youth in ill health. He was able to overcome his health issues with bodybuilding and exercise. Exercise, as it turned out, became his life. By his late teens he had become an accomplished athlete. During World War 1 Joseph was interned in England as an "enemy alien" with other German nationals. It was during this time that he refined his ideas and trained other internees in his system of exercise. He was interested in the concept of conditioning the body using the mind. Before Pilates was known by it's namesake, Pilates referred to his system as controlology. Using bed springs and furniture, he created equipment that could be used for resistance exercise by the bedridden. In 1918 England suffered an influenza outbreak that killed thousands. Not one person following Josephs exercise system died. After his release Joseph returned to Germany, where his system gained some popularity with the dance community. Shortly

after his return he was asked to train the German army his system of exercise. He decided to leave Germany for good. In 1923 Joseph Pilates immigrated to the United States. During his voyage he met Clara, a nurse, who would later become his wife, and together; until his death they worked to refine and share Josephs work with others. His teachings became very popular among the dance community in this country, and stayed that way for many years. Some years after his death, the Pilates system started finding its way outside of the dance community, and now, almost 40 years after his death, millions of Americans practice Pilates. I believe that Joseph would not be a bit surprised that his system would one day be considered fitness mainstream. He was known to say often, "I'm fifty years ahead of my time." Simply defined: The focus of Pilates is on strengthening the "powerhouse" (abs & buttocks) by implementing controlled movements with much attention to systematic breathing. Written by Ree Klock. Courtesy of

Are You Too Old To Go Back To School?

You want to go back to school and continue your education.

Perhaps you'd like to earn your first degree or you would like to earn a new degree in a different field. You've been dreaming of that degree but haven't dared believe your dream can come true because you think you are too old. You aren't. It really is that simple. I don't care what your age is, as an experienced college-level educator I can assure you that you are not too old, because there are many nontraditional students on college campuses today (and likely some of those are older than you are), your life experience gives you many advantages over more traditional students, and with the growing nontraditional population many colleges have programs and services especially tailored for the nontraditional student. I went back to school in my 30s and today I teach college. Yes, I have many traditional students in my classroom but every semester I have a large percentage of nontraditional students as well. I have students in their late 20s as well as 30s, 40s, 50s, and up. I have students who have retired from one career and are looking to move into another. I have students whose children (or grandchildren) have left the nest so they are looking to enter a new stage in their life. I also have many students balancing school with work and family. I have students who are the traditional age but are in nontraditional circumstances including children and family, work and military service, as well as sports and other activities. You are a unique person, but your situation is not as unique as you might think. In many ways, your age, or rather your life experience, will be a tremendous asset for your return to school. Nontraditional students understand much better than traditional students

how to manage their time and prioritize tasks. In addition, nontraditional students are often much more motivated and goal-oriented than their more traditional counterparts. Finally, your life experience also gives you a great deal of knowledge and experience to fall back on or pull from when it comes to understanding, applying, or adapting the new knowledge you gain through college. I regularly see my nontraditional students outperform traditional students in many ways, but it ultimately comes down to a maturity of thinking and reasoning that can only come with growing up. I know when I returned to college as a student after working for a number of years that I did much better in the classroom and also handled my work load much better than I did when I was a more traditional student. Today colleges recognize they have a changing student population and offer classes in a variety of formats including on campus, off campus, televised, and internet as well as a range of schedules including days, nights, weekends, and accelerated. In addition, there are now support services available for students who fall outside the traditional student role. Many financial aid and scholarship programs also exist specifically for the nontraditional student. In the end, it really comes down to your own gut feeling. Do you really want that degree? Are you ready to change your life? You can do it and there will be help and support available for you. Don't use your age as an excuse not to pursue your dream.

Written by Deanna Mascle. Courtesy of

Drowning In Debt? Five Tips For College Students And Recent College Grads

Are you a college student or a recent graduate? Chances are you're saddled with a hefty amount of student loans as well as consumer debt, like car payments and credit card balances. Two-thirds of undergraduates emerge from college with student loans, with the average amount from federal loans alone (Stafford and Perkins loans) just above $19,000. Throw graduate school into the mix, and those numbers get even scarier. Some students and graduates have already learned how to make smart borrowing decisions and manage their debt. Others are in for a rude surprise - it can take years to get out from bad financial decisions you made before you even started your first real job. That's a pity, because one of the main reasons for going to college is to invest in yourself, to increase your earning power down the road, and to open doors for yourself. If you make stupid financial decisions while you're in college and as you transition into the working world, you're squandering your big investment and limiting your choices. Think money gives you freedom? Not if it's borrowed and badly managed. Why close doors on yourself? Whether you're still in school or have already graduated, keep these rules in mind as you make borrowing and spending decisions.

1. Smart debt vs. stupid debt Not all debt is bad. Student loans, for example, are a smart investment if you invest that debt in the right program and do well there. When is educational debt bad? When you're wrecking your transcript because you're out partying all the time, for example, or you borrow for a school or a degree that won't enable you to pay that debt back. Even smart student loans need to be managed wisely, however. Your tuition and school fees are fixed costs, but you have a choice to make about every dollar you borrow above and beyond that amount to finance your lifestyle. Every dollar you borrow to live on your own instead of sharing space with a roommate, to eat out instead of feeding yourself, to buy the latest and greatest video game systems or cell phones, to go out drinking, and to have someone paint your nails is stupid debt. Don't get me wrong - I love a yummy restaurant meal as much as the next person, but don't borrow in order to have those things. If you borrow stupidly, you'll find yourself living a lot less glamorously after college than you did in college. Who wants to move backwards like that? Consumer debt is stupid debt. Borrowing to fund illegal or addictive activities is also stupid debt. If you find yourself "having" to borrow in order to pay for alcohol or internet gambling (the latter is also illegal in many states), you have bigger problems to worry about than just your finances. If you can't stop doing either of those things to preserve your financial health, you need help quitting. Now.

2.Know how much you can borrow If you're still in the planning stages, use the excellent calculators and resources at to figure out how much student debt you can manage. 3. Paying off debt If you find yourself with different kinds of debt, pay off any consumer debt before you pay more than the minimum monthly payment on your student loans. Compare the interest rates you're paying on your various balances - pay down the debt with higher rates first.

4.Pay your bills on time Many of the college students and recent grads I interact with are bad about paying their bills on time. You've got to treat your bills as sacred, because even one late payment will show up on your credit report and lower your all-important FICO score, a number derived from your credit report that summarizes your credit-worthiness. You want that number to be as high as possible, ideally above 700. The lower your score, the more money you'll pay to borrow. Who looks at your credit report and FICO score? Everyone from credit card companies to educational lenders to prospective employers to landlords to mortgage lenders to car and health insurance companies. Get a free copy of your credit report at, and pay the small additional fee to find out your FICO score.

5. Think hard about grad school Many college seniors who aren't sure what to do after graduation rush off to graduate school (often law school, because that admissions process

requires neither work experience nor a specific undergraduate curriculum). More often than not, their parents are also pushing them into grad school. Big mistake. Graduate school, especially law school, is expensive. It will set you back six figures and three years of lost work experience and income, all for a career that most applicants know nothing about. Go out and experience the working world before you commit to a particular graduate program. If you think your current student debt is scary, imagine how much more indentured you'll be with an additional six figures of debt. If you're going to make that kind of investment, make sure it's a smart one. Grad school isn't going anywhere. You owe it to yourself to learn more about what you want out of a career, and out of life, before committing to a particular track. Your first few years in the “real world” after college are going to be full of new and challenging experiences. You donʼt want the financial decisions you made as a college student to restrict the choices you have in the working world. Making an effort to get a handle on your debt as quickly as you can gives you a head start on repaying loans and building a sound credit report. Written by Ana Ivey. Article courtesy of

WHY PRIVATE SCHOOL? A Look at the Potential Benefits

The question of how to educate a child is one of the most important a parent can ask. A basic choice that many parents struggle with is that of public vs. private school. Parents do not want to take on unnecessary expenses if they will not ultimately benefit their child. After all, many public schools do an excellent job of educating students. But while it is true that public schools do not have tuition costs (and a private school can run, on average from 12,000 to 30,000 dollars a year), the benefits of a private education can still far outweigh the costs depending on the local options parents may face. Students who attend private schools can be more academically challenged, exposed to clearer value systems, given greater access to teachers, and may simply feel safer than local public school options. If you do decide to pursue private schooling for your child, start the research process early. Admission to private schools can be competitive, and finding a school that is a perfect fit for your child where he or she will be also be accepted, may take some time. A Higher Bar: A major advantage to private education is that your child will likely be challenged to a higher academic standard. Private schools can be more academically rigorous than public schools, and private school students may have to meet more criteria to keep up their grade point averages. According to The Condition of Education 2001, from the National Center for Education Statistics, Private high schools typically have more demanding graduation requirements than do public high schools. Compared with public schools, private schools required more coursework (in 4-year high school programs). More can be expected of private school students in terms of quality of work, course workload, and special requirements such as community service or Arts participation. In some schools, what would normally be considered extracurricular activities, are prerequisites for graduation, which ultimately round out students' high school experience. The push to meet this higher standard often results in a greater level of student performance. In a recent NAEP report it was found that, 'Students in private schools scored significantly above the national average in grades four, eight, and twelve. As the report put it, 'Performance results in 2002 show that, at all three grades, students who attended nonpublic schools had higher average writing scores than students who attended public schools.' In general, a student given the opportunity to attend a private school will most likely reach a higher level of academic achievement. Student Teacher Ratio: Private schools also tend to focus on controlling their class sizes. The NCES Schools and Staffing Survey found that, 'Private high schools on average are less than half the size of public schools. In central cities, for example, the average size of a private high school is 398, compared to 1,083 for a public school.' Students of private schools may have more opportunities to form relationships with their teachers, which can lead them to greater academic success. In such cases, a student is given help for his or her specific academic problems, which can allow the issue to be resolved quickly and correctly. Once any issues inhibiting a student's progress have been addressed, the child can go on to achieve at his or her highest level. In The Condition of Education 2002, it was found that, 'Placing students in small groups tends to foster close working relationships between teachers and students, thus enhancing learning, particularly among at-risk students and those in the early grades.' Also, small classes allow the teachers to have a better sense of who your child is, and what his or her specific strengths and weaknesses are. Your child will also have more opportunities to speak up and participate in class discussions. In addition, students may be offered office hours during which the teacher will be available. Students who have worked closely with their teachers are less likely to feel intimidated about using such time to actively seek help from their teachers directly.

Exposure to the Arts: Private schools have the ability to create their own curriculum. Although, they must ultimately prepare students with the same basic course as any other school, private schools also have the option to add various elements to their programs. Private school administrators often develop programs that emphasize the Arts, perhaps more so than local public schooling options. Schools may choose to produce elaborate plays and musicals, giving students unique opportunities to explore their talents and express themselves. Government regulations on public schools prevent them from spending more than a certain percentage of school funds on the Arts. Private schools, however, are not subject to the same regulations, and they have more freedom to develop and expand these programs as they wish. Some private schools may even offer filmmaking or video production courses which are opportunities normally reserved for college students. Potentially More Funds: The tuition that you and the other parents of a private school contribute often will go toward developing and funding special programs that would be restricted in public schools. The school may be able to offer other activities such as special field trips that reinforce the school's curriculum. Such trips can give your child opportunities to form close friendships and build independence. The school may have more funds available to provide supplies to student-run clubs. The school also may create programs that better tie the arts or sciences into the overall general curriculum. A Push Towards College: Private high schools can instill their students with the expectation of attending college. Data from the National Education Longitudinal Study of 1988, 'Fourth Follow-up' (NELS: 1988/2000) show that, 'Students who had attended private school in 8th grade were twice as likely as those who had attended public school to have completed a bachelor's or higher degree by their mid-20s (52 versus 26 percent) and far less likely to have had no post-secondary education.' With college as a focus, students can be more goal oriented, and often elements of the schools curriculum will be specifically aimed at preparing your child for college. Many private schools are even referred to as 'college preparatory.' Private schools often encourage their students to take an active role in their own college admission process. Students may be given more access to information about college options, and they may be made more aware of the requirements they must fulfill to qualify for a specific school. Community Service and a Sense of Values: Private schools often put a major emphasis on personal values. When choosing a private school for your child, it is possible to find a school that incorporates a great deal of your own values into its everyday curriculum. Private schools often have honor codes and stricter behavioral standards that help students develop into mature adults. According to The Condition of Education 2001 from the National Center for Education Statistics, 'At private schools, a greater percentage of children had parents who were very satisfied with order and discipline than with the school or teachers in 1999.' Parents are often given greater say in school policies at private schools. Many private schools require that their students complete a mandatory number of community service hours. This not only provides the obvious benefit of instilling a sense of respect for the community and the importance of making a contribution to society, but it also happens to be something colleges especially favor. Students may also find possible career options while fulfilling this service requirement such as political involvement to aid the community or counseling for endangered teens. Community service experiences teach students that education goes beyond the walls of the school, and that it sometimes requires action and initiative. Discipline and Safety: Beyond the fact that smaller classrooms are by their very nature easier to control, most private schools put special emphasis on discipline. Even if your child does not have discipline problems, disruptive peers could take away from your child's valuable learning time. The Condition of Education 2002 states that, 'Private school teachers were more likely than public school teachers to say that they had a lot of influence on setting student performance standards (63 versus 38 percent) and on student discipline policy (48 versus 30 percent).' The push for discipline in private schools teaches children self control, which will ultimately be a requirement in college where the student will be far more responsible for his or her own attendance, and achievement. Also, stricter disciplinary policies mean that any major problems will be handled and eradicated quickly. Typical crimes that plague public schools are less common at private schools. The School Crime and Safety Report found that, 'Students in public schools (37.3 percent) were more apt to see haterelated graffiti at school than their counterparts in private schools (16.8 percent).' A Word About Teachers: Because teachers at private schools are not required to earn the same certifications as public school teachers, some parents worry that the teachers are not as qualified. This is not necessarily true. Private schools must maintain their reputations and create positive word of mouth to survive. Toward this end, private schools are generally very selective about who they place in front of their students, and they choose educators with training specific to the subject they will be teaching.

A Community in Itself: When you decide to enroll your child in a private school, your family becomes part of a network of families with the same goals. Parents at private schools are more involved in the lives of the students and various school events. As a parent, you may have the opportunity to connect with other parents to discuss the lives of your children. Such relationships allow parents to learn from each other and support each other. The students also benefit from the community atmosphere of private schools. The very specific personalities of private schools often lead the students to have a strong sense of pride and loyalty to the school and its community. The student may also benefit from affiliation to the school far beyond graduation day. Many private schools have alumni mentoring programs that connect older alumni with newer ones. Recent graduates may find internship opportunities with alumni who have been working in their field of interest. Every Family is Different: Despite the numerous benefits of private schooling, it must be said that private school is not for every child. Some children would benefit from the diversity a public school can offer. Some parents would prefer their children to be more focused on the core subjects rather than the arts and extracurricular interests. And, of course, the financial burden that a private school brings is considerable. No student is exactly the same as another, and only a parent can know what the best option is for his or her child. Any child, whether in private or public school, will need the active participation of his or her parents in order to achieve true success. School Choice: The major advantage of private schooling is choice. Rather than sending your child to a public school that is required based on geography, now you have opened up a selection of several schools that may have very different educational styles and emphases, simply because you are deciding on private education. Every private school has a unique personality, and with a little research, certain schools will emerge from the pool as having more features than that will benefit your child. Perhaps the school is affiliated with your family's religious faith, and your child can be given a religious education along with his or her core studies. Perhaps the school emphasizes writing, or it pushes self-expression. With the vast variety of private schools available, it is easy to select a school that will help your child to shine and develop the values you find most important. Conclusion: No choice can guarantee that your child's formative years will go smoothly. Parents should always remain highly active participants in the education of their children. Still, in the interest of giving a student the most advantages and opportunities possible private school can be an attractive option. Private schools can reduce worries about safety, increase a child's exposure to discipline, offer reduced class sizes, and offer a good environment for high academic achievement. In many cases, a private school can prove to be much more than that, providing a community environment for your family and special opportunities that your child would not have otherwise. Written by Javier Colayco. Courtesy of,


So itʼs back to school time, which for most of us Moms that means back to reality. I donʼt know about you, but this summer has been quite an adventure for my family and I. Vacationing was very limited for us this year due to the state of our economy and itʼs effect on our pocket book. It made vacation planning pretty tough and I spent a lot of time searching for the best deals everywhere we wanted to go. Fortunately, even with a super tight budget we were able to enjoy some really great places

this summer like New York, Miami, San Diego, as well as numerous days spent at good olʼ Zuma Beach. Oh how nice were the days of relaxing on the beach and reading all the latest gossip magazines. Now that back to school is here itʼs time to get not only the kids, but yourself focused on the new school year ahead and off of the vacation schedule. Here are some helpful tips to make this the smoothest transition possible.

1. Check before “Back-to-School” shopping: August is known for being the second largest sales month for retailers everywhere and most retailers begin their back to school sales in July. So needless-to-say itʼs smart to shop during that time, but are you truly ready then? 2. 3. A little word of advice I live by: “An informed shopper is a savvy shopper” so always be prepared before you shop. - Start by assessing each childʼs back-to-school clothing needs. - Empty drawers and closets of outgrown or worn-out clothing, and either store or donate the discards. - Clean and organize clothing storage before adding any new garments. - Create a “back-to-school wardrobe needs” list for each child. - Discuss the “needs list” and your budget with your children before you shop and you will avoid any in-the-store tantrums that may occur. The same goes for back-to-school supplies. Be sure to ask the school for a classroom supply list before shopping for school supplies. Again with the back-to-school sales beginning in midJuly, last minute shoppers may have a tough time locating needed supplies for their children so shop early. 2. Create a Calendar Board: The school year is filled with a large variety of activities and itʼs easy to become overwhelmed if all of these activities are not listed in one central location for the entire family to review.Nothing will

calm the school year chaos down more than creating a calendar board. This board should be for all family calendars, schedules, after-school activity flyerʼs, school programs, and whatever else you feel pertains. Buy just a basic cork board, add a pre-printed white board calendar to it, place in a central location in the house and you are on your way. This is the biggest step in creating organized family time management and a stress-free school year. Remember form is less important than function so choose a calendar format that works best for your family. 3. Ease into the “Back to School” schedule: During the summer vacation we all tend to fall off of our typical school year schedule. We tend to stay up late and wake up even later. To help everyone in the family start off the school year with a bang, 2 weeks prior to the first day of school start going to bed at the time you would on a “typical” school night and wake up each morning as if you were waking up for school. This will help get the entire family back on routine so that first day isnʼt so stressful and the kids are well rested for their first day back. The new school year definitely quickens the tempo of family life so I hope that some of these tips will help bring a new focus and pleasant harmony to your home. Keep in mind the less stress you have the better health and happiness for all. Happy Back-to-School!

Written by Danielle Line. Courtesy of,

Products To Love In August What was that one thing that you always looked forward to when it was time for the school year to start again? The one thing that you waited all year for and couldn始t wait to have once school started? For me it was my art supplies. I could hardly wait for the trip to the art supply store so I could get my materials, and by far my favorite was getting a brand spankin始 new tin of colored pencils. Once that tin and my sketch pad were in hand there was an entire world of pictures ready to come spilling out of my imagination and onto the blank pages. My preferred brand? Prismacolor. So go on, grab a handful and let loose your imagination! Please click here for more information.






Reviewed by Rural Jungle Testing

The Danby DAR195BL 1.8 Cu. Ft. Designer Compact All Refrigerator, in black, is energy efficient refrigeration in a convenient, compact space. This model makes a great addition to the student dorm room. It includes our second generation CanStor beverage dispenser, tall bottle storage and a scratch resistant work top to store accessories.Please click here for more information.

With it's distinctive swerve design and padded computer sleeve, the large High Sierra Swerve day pack will comfortably carry your gear all day long. The multicompartment design offers a padded computer sleeve with back access that accommodates a 15-inch laptop. Storage features include a CD/MP3 player pocket with headphone port, easy-access media pocket that holds a cell phone or PDA, and an organizer compartment with multiple pockets and removable key fob. The S-shaped Airflow shoulder straps offer thumb ring adjuster pulls, and they feature ventilated Vapel mesh to keep you cool, a suspension strap to take the strain of heavy cargo off your back, and a tuck-away waist belt. Please click here for more information.

Products To Love In August Contains 3 portfolios, 50 sheets of art paper, 70 ct spiral notebook, 200 sheets of filler paper, composition book, 2 black and 2 red pens.Also contains Crayola 24 ct crayons, Crayola 12 ct long colored pencils, Crayola washable markers, 100 ruled 3 x 5 index cards, facial tissue. Plus scissors, highlighter, a pink bevel eraser, nylon pencil bag, 6 pencils, sharpener, Crayola glue stick, ruler, and 8 oz hand sanitizer. Great kit for a third, fourth, or fifth grade student. Excellent quality supplies Please click here for more information.

This 17" x 23" magnetic dry erase 3 'n 1 board is extremely versatile. Framed with a durable aluminum border, it is perfect for free-hand note taking and planning upcoming events on the convenient monthly calendar. But it is more than just a dry erase board - you can also use the classic cork strip to attach important notes and papers! A black dry erase marker and two black button magnets included. Please click here for more information.

Designed for every day of the week, with the HP 2000, you get genuine HP reliability for your social networks, videos, music, and more. Surf the web, send email, or talk face to face with a built-in HP TrueVision HD webcam. Play HD games and watch blockbuster movies on a brilliant widescreen display. Enjoy clear conversations and full sounding music thanks to premium Altec Lansing speakers. And do it all on the move with outstanding battery life. / Brilliantly engineered: Each series undergoes at least 140 rigorous tests defined by HP Labs to ensure they can survive extreme conditions and use over the long haul. Please click here for more information.

City Spotlight

New York, NY

It始s more than just the weather that始s hot in the Big Apple in August. . . .

From free film screenings to colorful street parades, the city始s culture comes to life during the beautiful summer season. In addition to the summer-long schedule of free concerts and productions such as Central Park始s Summerstage and Shakespeare in the Park, here are some other activities to consider checking out during an August trip to New York City. New York International Fringe Festival Prepare to be amazed by the energy and excitement surrounding the creative and innovative productions at the New York International Fringe Festival (FringeNYC.) Every summer, North America始s largest multiarts festival hosts over 200 performance companies from around the globe. The festival runs for 16 days in August and showcases over a thousand performances in several venues. For a list of all shows, a guide to the various venues and information on how to buy tickets online, visit the FringeNYC official website. Central Park Film Festival What better place to watch a film than Central Park, which has served as the cinematic backdrop for many Hollywood hits. The annual Central Park Film Festival is a must for movie lovers, featuring free outdoor screenings of film favorites at Rumsey Playfield. Screenings take place rain or shine and are all closed-captioned. The shows begin at 8 p.m. with the gates opening at 6 p.m. To get to the venue, movie goers should enter Central Park at Fifth Avenue and 69th Street, bring a blanket, then sit back and enjoy the show! Head over to the Central Park official website for a handy monthly calendar of events that includes the scheduled film screenings for August. Harlem Week The celebration of this vibrant community in Upper Manhattan began in 1974 as a one-day

event. Now Harlem Week has a busy schedule of activities all summer including the New York City Children始s Festival. Home of one of the most famous entertainment venues in the United States, the Apollo Theater, Harlem Week emphasizes the importance of this neighborhood as a key center of creativity, arts and culture in the U.S. The Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts Mostly Mozart Festival The long-running Mostly Mozart Festival offers the magic of Mozart and more. This annual summer celebration of music, art, dance and film showcases an incredible array of programming that will dazzle and delight culture vultures. The festival debuts up-andcoming performers as well as world-renowned master musicians like Yo-Yo Ma. From opera singers to string quartets to pianists, the festival features dozens of concerts and events and takes place at various venues of the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, which is situated in Upper West side of Manhattan. Lincoln Center Out of Doors Throughout the month of August, the Lincoln Center also hosts the Out of Doors performance arts series, which features free music, theater and dance productions at Damrosch Park. The open-air stage is located at the southwest corner of the Lincoln Center Plaza, at 62nd Street between Columbus and Amsterdam Avenues. Summer also brings numerous street fairs, parades and festivals to New York that celebrate the colorful mosaic of cultures that make up the city. The Dominican Day parade runs along Sixth Avenue from 36th to 62nd Streets on the second Sunday of August, and the India Independence Day parade takes place on Madison Avenue from 41st to 23rd Streets the third weekend of August.

Written by Rosalie Scott, courtesy of

DYI Project - August DIY Braided Hex Nut Bracelet You’ll need: • • •

3 strands of cotton butcher’s twine cut into one yard pieces 18 small brass hex nuts a bit of dexterity!

1. Gather the 3 strands of twine and tie a knot at the top, leaving about 2 inches of slack. Start braiding. At about an inch of the way down, you’ll begin braiding in the nuts. Before you braid the far left strand over the middle strand, thread on a nut, push it against the base of the braid, and crossover. Depending on the thickness of the twine, you can wrap tape around the bottom tips to prevent the twine from fraying. 2. Keep your thumb at the base of the braid, holding the nut in its place. Before you braid the far right strand over the middle, thread on another nut, push it against the base of the braid and crossover. Again, hold your thumb tightly against the base of the braid, keeping the nuts in place. Thread another nut onto the far left piece and crossover. 3. Repeat the steps, by threading the rest of the nuts to the outer pieces of twine before they are crossed over. Thread, cross, thread, cross. Finish the bracelet with another inch of braided twine and a knot. 4. The bracelet should wrap around your wrist at least two or three times. Trim it to your liking. 5. Good luck!!

Courtesy of

Businesses That Make A Difference

At The Hershey Company, they are committed to making a difference in the communities where we live, work and do business. This commitment dates to the

earliest years of the company and is a vital part of both their heritage and of they are today. More than a century ago, our founder, Milton S. Hershey, broke ground for what was to become the world's largest chocolate factory. Mr. Hershey was truly unique. Not only did he transform the business of making chocolate, he established an enduring model of responsible community stewardship. Milton Hershey School, founded by Milton and Catherine Hershey and is administered today by the Hershey Trust, our largest shareholder, remains the

farmers and their families in West Africa, Asia and the Americas. Hershey supports programs that help improve farmer incomes, responsible labor practices,

primary beneficiary of our business. Nearly 2,000 disadvantaged boys and girls who attend Milton Hershey School annually, and more than 8,000 graduates, have benefitted from Mr. Hershey's generosity. Hershey supports hundreds of community agencies that deliver services and support to those most in need. Their philanthropy reaches around the world, including working with the Children's Miracle Network, Family Health International and a children's burn center in Guadalajara, Mexico. They are a leader in working to enhance the lives of cocoa

opportunities for children and youth, and community health. They practice environmental stewardship by supporting environmentally sound cocoa farming, implementing ongoing recycling, clean air and water management programs, improving the environmental sustainability of our packaging and working to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, waste, and our use of natural resources. Check out to find out more.

This month's random fact is all about a childhood favorite: Swings!

A swing is a hanging seat, usually found at playgrounds for children, a circus for acrobats, or on a porch for relaxing. The seat of a swing may be suspended from chains or ropes. Once a swing is in motion it continues to oscillate like a pendulum until external interference or drag brings it to a halt. Swing sets are very popular with children.

On playgrounds, several swings are often suspended from the same metal or wooden frame, known as a swing set, allowing more than one child to play at a time. Such swings come in a variety of sizes and shapes. For infants and toddlers, swings with leg holes support the child in an upright position while a parent or sibling pushes the child to get a swinging motion. Some swing sets include play items other than swings, such as a rope ladder or sliding pole.

For older children, swings are sometimes made of a flexible canvas seat, of rubberized ventilated tire tread, of plastic, or of wood. A common backyard sight in modern America is a wooden plank suspended on both sides by ropes from a tree branch. Older children can go much higher, sometimes over 15 feet (5 m) above the ground. In the United States, some adults go to the extreme and compete in the NSA, "National Swing Association", where competitors reach heights over 20 feet, while leaping at the peak of their swing.

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