FREE! VOLUME 39, #9 NOVEMBER 2022 INSIDE: Gifts Galore - A Holiday Guide
EDITOR & PUBLISHER
Karen Wawszczyk Melanie Schroeder
Barbara Blackburn • Donna Phillips Richard De Fino • Deborah Williams Kathy Lundquist • Myrna Beth Haskell Mike Daugherty
Where It’s At! Happy Thanksgiving!
6 n How to Create Thankful Kids This Thanksgiving by Sarah Lyons
7 n 3 Ways to Find Gratitude When Your Kids Threaten Your Sanity by Pam Moore
23 n Parent Previews by Kirsten Hawkes
24 n Dear Teacher by Peggy Gisler & Marge Eberts
26 n Tweens and Teens
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8 n 9 Fun Online Clubs & Extracurricular Activities for Kids by Kimberly Blaker
34 n One Parents Experience: 3 to 6 in Fourteen Weeks by Sarah Lyons
12 n Gifts Galore
32 n Wellness Choices
5 n Web Finds / What’s New In The Kid Biz
10 n Pick of the Literature by Dr. Donna Phillips
18 n Raising Digital Kids Social Media & Self Image by Mike Daugherty
20 n Family Travel
The Importance of Travel Insurance by Deborah Williams
22 n Journey Into Fatherhood Violet Turns Two by Richard De Fino
Raising Happy Teens: Tips for Parents by Tanni Haas, Ph.D.
28 n Single Parenting
Single Parents CAN Have JOY & PEACE by Diane Dierks, LMFT, CFLE
30 n Special Needs
Success Story: Meet Kasseem Harris!
38 n The Kid Friendly Kitchen Oven Roasted Turkey by Kathy Lundquist
39 n The Kiddie Gourmet Hideaway Grille by Barbara Blackburn
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November 2022 WNY Family 3 November 2022 • Volume 39 • Issue 9
4 WNY Family November 2022
What’s New... IN THE KIDBIZ web.finds
If you’re hosting Thanksgiving at your house, we’ve found some fun items to help you dress your table, keep the kids occupied, and even allow the grownups to have some fun!
STANDING TURKEY CRAFT KIT
These colorful turkeys are easy to create! Just slip each piece into the base to create a cool layered 3D look kids will love. Put one at each place setting or create a display somewhere in your home! Includes self-adhesive pieces. 8 3/4” x 3” x 5” Makes 12. ($9.99, OrientalTrading.com)
ATTENTION GEN Z: EFFORT LEADS TO SUCCESS
Earlier this year, as reported by the New York Times, a New York University profes sor was fired after 82 of his 350 students signed a petition against him for making his organic chemistry course too hard.
As ‘quiet quitting,’ the phenomenon of only doing the bare minimum, continues to trend, it begs the question: Are students putting in the amount of effort needed to succeed? And if so, should effort always equal success?
FALL NATURE STENCIL KIT
Celebrate the fall season with these du rable stencils. Use them with fabric paint to create a special Thanksgiving tablecloth, table runner, or just a set of napkins to add something special to your holiday table. Set of 12 assorted autumn designs. 5” square. ($7.49, Oriental Trading.com)
COLOR YOUR OWN TURKEY CROWNS
Expecting a flock of kids at your house for Thanksgiving dinner? These paper crowns are made with thick, non-bleed paper and are perfect for crayons, markers, gel pens, or colored pencil coloring. The crowns can be adjusted to fit different head sizes. ($11.19, by Tiny Expressions, Amazon.com)
To get a better understanding of how difficult students find their courses and how they respond to being enrolled in a challenging class, Intelligent.com surveyed 1,000 current 4-year college students.
• 87% of college students say professors make classes too difficult.
• Two-thirds say the professor should have been forced to make the class easier, and nearly 1 in 10 filed a complaint.
• 1 in 3 students who put in ‘a lot of effort’ spend less than 5 hours/week studying.
• 38% of students have asked a profes sor to change their grade, and 31% have cheated in order to get a better grade.
• Nearly half want their school to move to pass/fail grading.
• The issue of classes being made too difficult most frequently came up in classes that fall under the subjects of math and sci ence.
• Overall, 3% of students say they spend less than an hour doing homework or study ing for classes each week, 31% spend 1-5 hours, 37% spend 6-10 hours, 16% spend 11-15 hours, 8% spend 15-20 hours, and 5% spend more than 20 hours.
This is an activity both kids and grownups can enjoy together! The game cards are full of favorite Thanksgiving Day characters, symbols, and elements. 24 Bingo Game Cards (7’ x 5”) and Leaf “chips” as mark ers are all reusable. ($8.79, by Fancy Land, Amazon.com)
Michael Katz, a Professor at University of California Berkeley who teaches a class called “The Pursuit of Meaningful Work,” which is about Gen Z psychology and val ues, gives some insight as to why so many college students say they feel professors are making classes too difficult.
“Gen Z has less resilience than other generations,” Katz says.
“It’s less that faculty are making their courses harder and more that students feel greater anxiety and overwhelm when they perform worse than they expected. This puts them in a “fight or flight” state, and of ten they’re fighting to get grades changed or to discipline faculty members.”
November 2022 WNY Family 5
Teach Them The Cost of Things
How to Create Thankful Kids This Thanksgiving
As Thanksgiving approach es, it is nice to reflect on and appreciate our bless ings. In our family, each member writes down something they are thankful for on Thanksgiving Day and we read them aloud at Thanksgiving dinner. This is a fun exercise that teaches our children to show gratitude for things otherwise taken for granted. We enjoy that special day’s pause to remember what we are grateful for; but, what about every other day of the year? How do we teach our kids to be grateful all year long?
The easiest and most effective way to start teaching your children gratitude is to model it yourself. Let your children hear you talk about the things you are thankful for. “I am so grateful for this beautiful day today so that we can go to the park,” or “I am so thankful for a great job to pay for our home and our food.”
You can also do as we have on Thanksgiving Day and go around the table at dinner and name something you are thankful for any night of the year. When kids acknowledge the blessings they have in their lives, they will begin to take note and appreciate them.
Serve As A Family
Families who do service projects together tend to be families who appre ciate what they have more. When chil dren see that some are less fortunate, they will develop a desire to help oth ers and make a difference. Not only do they become more aware of others and the blessings in their own lives, but they are more likely to give of their time and treasures for a lifetime.
Teach Them to Say Thank You
From a young age, teach children to say thank you. Encour age kids to say thank you for any acts of service or gifts. Even toddlers can be taught to sign “Thank You.” Writing thank you notes is a great way to provide kids the oppor tunity to thank someone for the gifts they receive and the time it took to purchase them.
Encourage a policy of “It’s the thought that counts” and explain that it isn’t the ac tual gift itself but the thought behind the purchase that we are grateful for.
Take Care of Property
Teach kids the value of their prop erty by showing them the importance of caring for their belongings. Clothes cost money, so they should not be on the floor in piles. Toys cost money so if one is broken due to misuse, do not rush to replace it.
It isn’t healthy to say yes to every request your child has. An answer of “No” or “Not right now” teaches chil dren both the value of delayed gratifi cation and encourages gratefulness for occasional treats. If a child is allowed to purchase a toy every time he visits the store, this will become expected. If the toy is purchased as a special reward or with their own money, the child will ap preciate it much more.
Parents know everything costs money and it adds up fast. Allow your child to come along to the grocery store and have them help you find the best deal on food they would like to purchase or allow them to bring their own allowance and purchase something they would like. Point out how much it costs when you go out to eat as a family or make a large purchase of grocer ies or other items the family needs. Take care to avoid blaming or anger when dis cussing the cost of items and use the oppor tunity to teach. When children understand the true cost of items, they are more likely to appreciate the purchase in the first place.
Give Them Chores
When children have chores and re sponsibilities to their family, they begin to understand how much work goes into cleaning, yard work, or other household tasks. Some families may choose to give an allowance for tasks completed, which can help kids learn to budget and understand the value of hard work, and in turn develop gratitude for the work that others do.
The main thing to remember as you encourage gratefulness in children is for you to model the behavior. Thank them for their hard work, acknowledge and thank others for their acts of service, help kids understand the value of items, and give them responsibilities that teach them hard work. We don’t have to eat turkey every day to be thankful for the blessings that surround us all year.
Sarah Lyons is a wife and stay at home mom of six children, including seven year old trip lets. She writes from her home in Kansas City.
6 WNY Family November 2022
— by Sarah Lyons
Ways to Find Gratitude When Your Kids Threaten Your Sanity
— by Pam Moore
Whenparents think of the things we’re grateful for, our kids generally make the top of the list. That said, when your kids are noisily begging you to eat the snack you are in the middle of making, or when you notice the “creative” way in which they’ve taken a ballpoint pen to the couch cushions… that river of grati tude suddenly dries right up. We’ve all been there.
With Thanksgiving approaching, I thought it might be helpful to “reframe” the way we view our kids’ shenanigans (e.g., the tendency to act like kids who, by nature, possess underdeveloped brains). There’s still much to be grateful for, even when your kid is a millimeter away from destroying your last nerve.
You ask your kid to find her shoes. She stares at her coloring book, as if in a trance. You stand two inches from her face and say, “I’m talking to you. It’s time to find your shoes. We are leaving in five minutes.” She ignores you. Us ing your flight-attendant voice, you ask “Can you hear me?” She nods, almost imperceptibly. Two minutes later, you tell her to put down her coloring book and get her shoes on. She says okay but remains glued to said coloring book. When she looks up again, you’re putting your coat on and saying through gritted teeth. “I’m not going to tell you again. Get your shoes on. It’s time to go.”
Through sobs, she proclaims, “I’m in the middle of something.”
Be grateful for: Your child’s capac ity to focus. Bonus: She might put her superior power of concentration to use when selecting your nursing home.
Your kid is asking you for a snack. You tell her she’s going to have to wait a minute; you’re in the middle of some thing. She responds by telling you ex actly what kind of snack she’d like. “I need Goldfish,” she informs you. She continues, “The cheddar kind. And they need to be in the purple ramekin.” You thought you had a five-year-old, not a rock star with a mile-long event rider. Visions of bedtime dance in your mind. Instead, you look at her and say, “What would be a nicer way to aks?” with the sweetness of maple syrup in your voice. Matching your saccharine request, she complies, asking, “Can I please have cheddar Goldfish in the purple ramekin? And also, I want more than my sister. Please.”
Be grateful for: Your child’s abil ity to know what she wants. This child will not need you to call her professor or landlord on her behalf twenty years from now.
You’re ready to leave the park. Your child is not. She’s creating a castle out of gravel using her hands and the shoe you specifically told her not to take off her foot. Your stomach is rumbling. Lunch time is rapidly closing in. Why isn’t your child hungry, you wonder? As you approach her, you notice the wild look in her eye. She is hungry indeed. The
smell of a meltdown is in the air. “Let’s go home!” you say. “NOOOOO!” she says. You offer macaroni and cheese for lunch. She glances up for a fraction of a second then goes back to her task. In about seven minutes, you will be carrydragging her to the car with her shoe tucked awkwardly under your arm and strapping her into her car seat like it’s a straightjacket. Once she’s in the house and seated at the table with a pile of neon orange noodles in front of her, she will eat like it’s her last supper.
Be grateful for: Your kid’s abil ity to be fully present in each moment. She’s not checking her texts or her social media notifications. She’s really living, man.
“You should be ready for school in five minutes,” you announce. Your child says she is ready. Yesterday’s French braid is hanging on by a few tenacious wisps. She’s in a floral tank top, a tutu, and leopard print leggings. It is snowing. She has on non-matching socks and her sparkly Velcro® sneakers. “But…” You stop before you complete the sentence because you don’t know how to say “You look homeless” nicely. “Sweetheart, it’s November. How about a long sleeve on top of that tank top?” is the best thing you can come up with. After all, she is fully dressed. She’s wearing sneakers on P.E. day. Her teeth are brushed. The bus is coming in ten minutes. There’s no time for a visit from the fashion police. “Do you feel good in that outfit?” you ask. She nods, beaming.
Be grateful for: The fact that your kid thinks for herself. If she knows what the other kids are wearing, she clearly does not care. With any luck, ten years from now she won’t be blowing her al lowance on the latest trend and insisting on shoes that’ll blow out a tendon if she so much as slips on a rogue acorn.
There is always something to be grateful for if you look hard enough. As parents, it’s important to remember, how you view a situation depends on where you stand (and of course how loudly your kid is whining).
Pam Moore is an award-winning free lance writer, intuitive eating coach, and host of the Real Fit podcast.
November 2022 WNY Family 7
9 Fun Online Clubs
& Extra-curricular Activities for Kids
— by Kimberly Blaker
Socialinteraction during childhood is more than just fun. It’s a vital part of childhood development. As kids grow, they learn from their peers and through playing with or talking to others. Engaging in social situations with other children teaches kids cooperation, collaboration, compromise, problem-solving, teamwork, and so much more.
Yet, not all kids have access to sufficient in-person socialization opportunities. Even those who do can benefit from additional options outside their surroundings. For tunately, technological advances have made it possible to develop new forums for kids to socialize with others who share similar interests, thus removing limits to exclusively local opportunities. Kids stuck at home due to a pandemic, those who homeschool, or even those who just want more opportunities to connect with like-minded peers can all benefit from online clubs or activities. So, check out this selection of virtual op portunities.
Kimberly Blaker is a Michigan-based freelance writer.
Activity Hero (activityhero.com) is a hosting site where various groups and instructors can list activities for kids of all ages. There’s a section with live online classes, after-school programs, and even holiday camps where students work together with a teacher choosing various options to match their interests. Options include LEGOs, science, cooking, art, music, coding, and more.
Fun Clubs (funclubs.com)
offers live online 45-minute classes led by an instructor for kids in grades K-8, depending on the class. Fun Clubs provides small group experiences within larger class sizes where students are broken down into groups of 6 to 8. This allows kids more time to interact with the teacher and each other in a comfortable setting. Classes include drama, piano, guitar, Spanish lessons, film-making, coding, cooking, and more.
(lavnercampsandprograms. com) offers technology camps with a STEM focus for kids in grades 1-9. It has camp sessions with over 40 classes offered over the winter, spring, and summer holidays. Classes admit between 4-8 students per instructor and provide opportunities for hands-on, experiential learning, collaboration with classmates, social interaction, and opportunities to progress through skill levels.
(idtech.com/virtual) hosts virtual technology classes and camps for kids ages 7-19 who want to learn or develop their technology skills. It offers weeklong sessions of no more than 5 students, combining instruction time with opportunities for classmates to collaborate and socialize.
8 WNY Family November 2022
(destinationscience.org) offers holiday camps, summer camps, and after school classes for kids ages 5-11. Participants receive science kits with the materials needed to participate in science activities during the live session with an instructor and other kids their age.
Connected Camps (connectedcamps.com)
Playcrafter Kids Club
(playcrafterkids.com) is for younger students ages 3-7 to engage in a 6-week program with two hour-long classes per week. Children work with four teachers trained in the arts and participate in drama, music, yoga, and dance using stories. Kids are split up into small groups, and during parts of the lesson, they can unmute and interact with their classmates.
offers year-round online programs and summer camps for kids who want to learn about digital entertainment such as coding, Minecraft, Esports, digital arts, and game design. Connected Camps has small group classes that offer kids opportunities to interact with others and collaborate on projects or games in a fun environment. It also hosts a free moderated Kid Club Minecraft server for kids ages 8-13. It offers counselors to mentor kids, a code of conduct, and is based on a specific learning approach.
Open Tent Academy
(opententacademy. com) caters more directly to homeschool students but offers some “after school” classes for kids. These classes focus more on learning material than just socializing, yet emphasize discussion and interacting with peers within the class.
is an online, small-group learning platform for kids ages 3-18. It offers over 100,000 classes, so it caters to practically any interest your child might have. Kids learn from teacher experts while interacting with classmates who share the same interests in a small, comfortable setting.
November 2022 WNY Family 9
PICK OF THE LITERATURE — by Dr. Donna Phillips
the month of food and gratitude. It is the time when everything around us in nature is contracting. Plant and tree energy sinks back into the earth to ready for its long winter rest and res toration. Birds fly south to warmer climates. Animals eat their fill of the fall ripened fruits, nuts, and grasses to prepare for their up coming hibernation. The woods begin to become quiet as the chatter of birds and squirrels fall away. It is our time to do the same.
Time to gather the harvest of our summer work and gather our family and friends around us for warmth and connection. This gathering gets us set tled for the cold months to come and the warm celebrations that take place. Thanksgiving is the first of the indoor gatherings where we share food, tradi tions, and stories. It is our chance to re flect on the bounty of the year, the gifts of friendship and gratitude for blessings both great and small.
There has been a bounty of remark able and thoughtful new books that this year has produced. There are many that we can bring to our quiet time and to help us celebrate our time together. Here are some that make us aware of the changes around us and the blessings of the fall season.
So exactly What is Fall? (Random House, New York, 2022. $8.99), by Genie Espinosa, explains this to us in a sweet season-shaped board book. Boasting the colors of the season and activating our senses, we explore the fields, forests, and the treats we can encounter. Apples, pumpkins, nuts, sun flowers, donuts, and of course, a scarf to keep us warm and a pile of leaves to play in, are shared in a simple rhyming cel ebration. This is the perfect little book to introduce these sea sonal sights, sounds, and sensations to the young and to acti vate the memories of the old.
Now that our senses are activated, we might as well focus on one of the fa vorite parts of the season… food! Mrs. Peanuckle’s Kitchen Alphabet (Ro dale Kids, New York, 2022, $7.99) is just what little hands need to explore the sights, sounds, and smells of the kitchen at holiday time. The alphabet is a great way to organize the tour as we page through this sturdy board book. Food, ingredients, uten sils, sources, and even emotions are shared here. It is a fun way to get ready
for Thanksgiving. What will we need? What do we have? This covers it all! So, let’s start cooking!
For older kids, the Ultimate Food Atlas (National Geographic, Washing ton, 2022, $12.99) is an educational and engaging book with maps, games, and recipes for every foodie! As only National Geographic can, we visit chap ters on North America, South America, Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia and Oceana, and the Oceans. In each, we get a tour of the geography, learn about what is grown and raised there, games to entertain, and recipes for creating deli cious dishes. If your family is tired of the same old Thanksgiving fare, this might be a resource for you to explore and ex pand the dinner menu! And don’t forget the other supporting resources including Food Categories, a Glossary — all sup ported by maps and fantastic photos.
So much food and so many ways to prepare it and enjoy it! But there still remains the main purpose of Thanksgiv ing… Thankfulness and Gratitude. The Little Book of Joy (Crown Books for Young Readers, New York, 2022, $18.99), written by the Dali Lama and Archbish op Desmond Tutu and illustrated by Rafael Lopez, is the perfect reset for our minds and our hearts
10 WNY Family November 2022
during these troubling times. In this book, they compare their lives and their journey from sadness into Joy. As they write,
One of us grew up in a little house.
One of us grew up in a big house.
Often we were sad. And Lonely. But when we sat still and Breathed in the quiet, We noticed something beautiful. Joy is everywhere.
This is a powerful message for all of us. If we look for sad ness, we will find it. If we look for beauty and joy, we will find it. In the middle of chaos there is peace and beauty. We just have to look for it. This simply written and joyfully illustrated book would be perfect to read before, during, and after the Thanksgiving holi day and be appreciated by all ages. It might set up a conversation or even set into motion a new way of moving through the holidays and every day. What you seek you will find. So why not seek Joy?
Gratitude, food, and joy are the defini tion of Thanksgiving. Hopefully, we can make it last for more than one day by sharing it and our compassion with others. These are values we can use to start each day. Healthy food, appreciation for those that provided it, and an outpouring of happiness and appreciation can change hearts, minds and, hope fully, the world. If every day we look for something that makes us smile and find a way to be kind to someone we just might do it…
Dr. Donna Phillips is an associate professor in the College of Education at Niagara University where her specialty is literacy and children’s literature. She lives on Grand Island, NY and is the mother of two adult children and the grandmother of one.
November 2022 WNY Family 11
A Holiday Gift Guide
138 Grey Street, East Aurora • 716-655-4456
Everyone is an artist at Designing Dish – a paint your own pottery store featuring Glass Fusing. New to our exciting menu of mediums: Glass Etching. Create one-of-a-kind make and take gifts from wine glasses to ornaments. We have those special projects that everyone will always remember. Open for walkins, birthday parties, ladies nights, and accepting reservations for private parties. Celebrate the Holiday Season by visiting us in the historic village of East Aurora. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram.
With 9 WNY Locations to serve you. Call 716-633-1390 for the nearest location.
Give The Gift of Good Taste! Enjoy this real old-time butcher shop, where meat professionals assist custom ers one-on-one in selecting their meats, poultry, deli and seafood. Here is where you can have your favor ite items cut and wrapped to your specification. Their large deli section includes a full signature line of fresh ly prepared dinner entrées and appetizers to choose from. Federal Meats specializes in friendly knowledgeable service where phone orders are always welcome. Federal Meats accepts Cash, Master Card, Visa, Dis cover and EBT. Holiday Gift Certificates, Steak & Meat Packages are also available for year-round gift giving.
636 Girard Avenue, East Aurora • 716-687-3300
The Fisher-Price® Toy Store is your headquarters for all things FUN! Come check out our large selection of toys and baby products for every occasion. We of fer a baby shower registry for all your new baby needs. Our expert staff will be happy to assist you with any questions you have to find the right product or gift item. Still not sure what to get? We also have gift cards available in any denomination. Call our information line at 716-687-3300 to hear our store hours or get directions to our store. Like us on Facebook.
70 Weiss Ave., W. Seneca/Orchard Park • 716-677-0338 www.gymnastics-unlimited.net
GYMNASTICS will keep your child moving all winter! No need to be a member for these programs to burn off that winter energy: Open Workouts Fri. & Sat. from 7:15-9pm just $13 (6 yrs & up), Toddler time on Wednesday & Thursday from 12:15-1pm for 5 yrs & under, $7 per walking child and Open Tumbling on Monday & Wednesday from 8:509:45pm, $9. HOLIDAY GIFTS!!! For those gymnasts that like to practice at home, you may order Mats, handspring spotters, beams, bars, leotards and other gymnastics inspired gifts along with gift certificates for our programs.
Hyatt’s All Things Creative
1941 Elmwood Avenue, Buffalo • 716-884-8900 www.hyatts.com
Discover special gifts for everyone on your list and shop local this year with Hyatt’s All Things Creative. As a family owned business in Western New York for over 60 years, Hyatt’s knows how to inspire creativity in people of all ages with their more than 55,000 products. Beyond art supplies, visit their newly expanded kids creative play area with more toys, building blocks, and STEAM sets! You’ll also find experienced and knowledgeable staff that are happy to take the time to help you find the perfect gift. Gift cards also available in any amount.
Jewish Community Center of Greater Buffalo
2640 N. Forest Road, Amherst • 716-688-4033 787 Delaware Avenue, Buffalo • 716-886-3145 www.jccbuffalo.org
Give the Gift of Fitness and Wellness! JCC Buffalo has it all covered with 2 locations (Buffalo & Amherst), indoor heated pools, beautiful fitness centers, youth enrichment programs, pickleball courts, 100+ group fitness & aquatics classes, theatre performances, top-notch personal train ers, adult programs, esports arena, art studio, complimen tary coffee, and the list goes on. We are building a stron ger community for our beloved Buffalo, and we welcome people from all over the world into our family for everyone. Join by calling 716-688-4033 or visit our incredible new website at jccbuffalo.org. Make a difference in someone’s life this holiday season.
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November 2022 WNY Family 13 Open Tumbling: Mon & Wed 8:50-9:45pm Open Workout: ages 6+ - Fri & Sat 7:15pm-9pm Toddler Time: up to age 5 - Wed & Th 12:15-1pm FREE infant sensory class: ages 6 wks to 16 months - Tu 12-12:30pm 70 Weiss Avenue • West Seneca, NY 14224 (716) 677-0338 H www.gymnastics-unlimited.net HH H Open to the Public H HH Birthday PartiesH SUNDAYS Call to Schedule ~ Violins ~ Violas ~ Cellos ~ Basses ~ Rentals ~ Repairs ~ Sales ~ Since 1973 ~ Monaco’s Violin Shop &Music Centre 55 CrossPoint Parkway, Suite 106 Getzville, NY (off N. French between I-990 & Millersport) www.MonacosViolinShop.com 716-688-8600 Annual Sale Nov. 25th - Dec. 23rd, 2022 Enjoy all the famous Buffalo fare like Wings, Beef on Weck, Fish Fry & more in an old Buffalo Museum setting. ParksideMeadow.com Just a short walk from the Darwin Martin House and across the street from the Buffalo Zoo. 2 Russell Street • Buffalo, NY 14214 716.834.8348 HOURS: Wednesday - Saturday: 4:00pm - 9:00pm
A Holiday Gift Guide
Kid to Kid
1060 Niagara Falls Blvd., Tonawanda • 716-831-8300 www.kidtokid.com/tonawanda
980 Union Rd., Southgate Plaza, West Seneca • 716-675-0483 www.kidtokid.com/westseneca
Holiday gift shopping at up to 70% off mall prices! We’re a family-owned, upscale resale store with two great locations in Tonawanda and West Seneca. We buy and sell the best of what kids outgrow: kids’ clothing sizes 0-14, shoes, toys, books, games, baby equipment, maternity wear and more. We buy all seasons all the time, no ap pointment necessary. It’s a win-win for parents...by trad ing in outgrown items and buying what’s needed now, and by giving another child an opportunity to love those items. Kid to Kid supports and donates to local charities. Open Mon-Sat 9am-8pm, Sun 12-5pm. Follow us on Facebook!
Monaco’s Violin Shop & Music Centre, Inc.
55 CrossPoint Pkwy., Suite 106, Getzville • 716-688-8600 www.monacosviolinshop.com
Monaco’s Violin Shop is a family owned and operated business serving this area since 1973. Monaco’s is the only store in WNY that specializes in the retail, rental, & repair of violins, violas, cellos, and basses. Monaco’s carries instruments made in Romania, the Czech Republic, Ger many and others. Monaco’s is the exclusive dealer of the Samuel Shen line of instruments in WNY. We have years of experience repairing many different stringed instruments including guitars, banjos, ouds, mandolins, and more. Our annual sale on instruments, accessories, and musically in spired gifts, runs from November 25th thru December 23rd.
Corner of Parkside & Russell, Buffalo • 716-834-8348 www.parksidemeadow.com
The Parkside Meadow - full bar and restaurant - is lo cated on the corner of Parkside and Russell, across from the Buffalo Zoo. Enjoy a full menu of home cooked foods like Reubens, Albacore Tuna Melts, Beef on Weck, Quesadillas, home made soups and appetizers. Also noted for their huge fish frys and Shaved Lamb sandwich. A warm and friendly neighborhood pub, featuring historic Buffalo mu seum decor. Offering local taps plus Genesee Beer on Tap. Kids menu, friendly, casual. Hours: Wed. - Sat., 4pm - 9pm.
Past & Present Science & Nature Store
3767 South Park Avenue, Blasdell • 716-825-2361 www.pastpres.com
Past & Present is a unique science & nature store offering unusual treasures from around the world. Fossils, rocks, minerals & crystals are some of the geolog ic wonders you might find for that one of a kind gift. Beautiful amethyst cathedrals, geodes & other natu ral pieces of art, along with handcrafted jewelry, are always available. Browsing our shop is a great experience for kids of all ages. Books, posters, science dis covery kits & geology tools are just some of the great gift ideas available. Be sure to visit our free Fossil Gal lery featuring dinosaurs, sharks, local & internationally found fossils.
PAW Patrol Live!
Shea’s Performing Arts Center www.pawpatrollive.com
PAW Patrol Live! sets sail with a pirate adventure! It’s Pirate Day in Adventure Bay and Ryder will need all paws on deck as he and the PAW Patrol dis cover a secret treasure map while on a mission to res cue Cap’n Turbot from a mysterious cavern. It’s up to Chase, Marshall, Skye and all their heroic pirate pup friends to save the day and find the pirate treasure be fore Mayor Humdinger finds it first! Playing Shea’s Buf falo Theatre January 6-8, 2023.
Skate Great, Inc.
Programs at area rinks - Canalside, Cheektowaga, East Aurora, Hamburg & Orchard Park 716-580-3458 www.sk8gr8.com
Support small business this holiday season by giving the gift of ice-skating, an experience that will last a lifetime! Skate Great has been teaching children & adults of all ages to skate for the past 20 years. They offer a wide range of programs including Learn- to-Skate, Beginner Hockey & Adult Only sessions. Private and semi-private lessons are also available to further devel op hockey & figure skating skills. Skate Great is sanc tioned by both Learn to Skate USA and USA Hockey.
14 WNY Family November 2022
St. Gregory the Great 100 St. Gregory Ct.,
Would you enjoy a Catho lic café to eat lunch with friends, or a faith-filled gift or book? St. Gregory the Great Café serves breakfast foods, paninis, salads, soups, wraps, and pizza on Wed. nights. The neighboring Catholic Store carries Bibles, books, crucifixes, sacred art, medals, jewelry, and more. You’ll find sacramental gifts, all-occasion greeting cards, holiday décor, and outdoor statues for spring! Check out the children’s corner, stocked with books, stuffed animals, small games, and DVDs to help kids learn their Faith. Come see for yourself! Tues-Fri. from 8:30am3pm. Wed. from 5:30pm7:30pm. Sat from 8:30am - Noon. Sun. from 9am2pm. Closed Monday.
November 2022 WNY Family 15
Williamsville 716-276-6920 www.stgregs.org
Urban Air Adventure Park
Walden Galleria, 1 Walden Galleria Drive, Buffalo 716-568-7083
Urban Air Adventure Park Buffalo is much more than a trampoline park. We’ve got trampolines for sure, lots of them in fact. But, when it comes to indoor fun for all ages, we’ve taken the indoor trampoline park concept to a whole new level with a huge variety of in door adventures and attractions for kids of all ages. At Urban Air we push adventure to the limits. We provide a safe place where your whole family can jump, soar, race, climb, and play.
Williamsville PTSA Holiday Craft Show
175 Heim Road, Williamsville www.holidaycraftshowptsa.com
Support local artisans and students at our 46th an nual event on Saturday and Sunday, December 3rd & 4th, 10 am – 4 pm daily. Find hand-crafted gifts at 170+ different booths- something for every age group, interest and budget: knits, linens, jewelry, home décor, photographs, foods, toys, pet items, etc. Admission is $3 ages 18+, $1 ages 11-17 and ages 10 and under are free. Proceeds benefit the Williamsville PTSA Council Student Scholarship Fund for 3 high schools.
16 WNY Family November 2022
GiftsGalore A Holiday Gift Guide Past & Present Fossils, Rocks & Minerals Amethyst Geodes Crystals & Tumbled Stone Science Discovery Kits Educational Toys • Books & Posters Jewelry • Agate Slices Unique Gifts From Around The World VISIT OUR FREE FOSSIL GALLERY! Hours: Mon, Tues, Fri, Sat 10-6 Wed & Thur 10-8 Sun 12-5 (for the holidays) Please call for additional hours 3767 South Park Ave. Blasdell NY • 716-825-2361 • www.pastpres.com Science & Nature Store and Fossil Gallery Gift Certificates Available
November 2022 WNY Family 17 Pottery Painting and Glass Fusing. Follow us on Facebook & Instagram Open for walk-ins 7 Days a week, Birthday Parties, and Ladies Nights. 138 Grey Street, East Aurora, NY 716-655-4456 • www.designingdish.com ST. GREGORY THE GREAT CATHOLIC STORE & CAFÉ 100 St. Gregory Court, Williamsville, NY 14221
STORE Come see our wide variety of Catholic books, bibles, jewelry, rosaries, artwork, statues, media & more. www.stgregs.org/catholic-store/ 716-276-6920 Add a muffin, bagel, or breakfast sandwich. For lunch choose your favorite panini and soup. WEDNESDAY IS PIZZA NIGHT! See a full menu online www.stgregs.org/cafe/ 716-276-6915 Join us for a cup of Fair Trade Organic Coffee. H H H H H H H H H H H H H H 15% OFF one item in the Catholic Store. Expires: 12/18/2022 FREE cup of coffee with same-day Catholic Store purchase. Expires: 12/18/2022 Williamsville PTSA DECEMBER 3 & 4 10AM - 4PM ADMISSION $3.00 18+ $1.00 11-17 10 AND UNDER FREE 175 HEIM ROAD, WILLIAMSVILLE, NY 170+ LOCAL CRAFTERS46th HOLIDAY CRAFT SHOW FREE PARKING APPEARING IN OUR DECEMBER ISSUE Showcase the unique gift ideas your business has to offer this holiday season! We’re making a list and checking it twice, Looking for stores that are Unique and Nice… SPACE RESERVATION DEADLINE: December Issue - November 10th Call your Advertising Rep. to find out how. Want a FREE 100 word “Gift’s Galore” Profile? GiftsGalore A Holiday Gift Guide FOR MORE INFORMATION CALL 836-3486 EXT. 104
Social Media Self Image&
RAISING DIGITAL KIDS
tive plays a pivotal role in the conversa tion surrounding self-image and social media. Older generations see a clear separation between their lives online and offline. Back in the old days — you know, the late 90s when Internet adop tion first began to take off — websites encouraged you to create an online per sona. Most people were wary of putting legitimate information online. News outlets and tech experts preached ano nymity. The web was viewed as a way to “take a break from yourself” in this new virtual world. Many online profiles had very little connection to reality. You could be whoever you wanted on line without fear of judgment because you were safe behind your keyboard. That was part of the allure of the web.
— by Mike Daugherty
from those early days of the web. Grow ing up in a connected world, the children of Generation Z have never experienced the web we once knew. They do not see much of a difference between their online and offline presence. The virtual world and the physical world comple ment each other.
tremely important. They are cautious about what they post.
Some teens even create a second, less public Instagram account. A Finsta account, or “Fake Instagram,” is the place where kids share a more accurate portrayal of their lives. Urban diction ary defines Finsta as “A fake Instagram account, so one can post ratchet pictures without persecution from sororities, jobs, and society as a whole. Finstas aren’t supposed to be taken seriously, and it doesn’t matter how many posts or followers one has.” Secondary Insta gram accounts have become so popular that the site released an update making it easier to switch between accounts.
Why is social media so important to this generation?
Fast forward twenty-five years. The online landscape is entirely differ ent. The most popular social sites such as Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat, strongly encourage users to be authen tic in their profile. Websites that pro mote anonymity are seen as archaic. Their pages often contain considerably less desirable content and people. As a society, we enter personal informa tion such as a cell phone number, credit card, and our home address into web sites on a routine basis. The move away from anonymity is a monumental shift
A study from Indiana University in 2015 states that “young adults ap pear to utilize social media primarily as a way to attract and form relationships with peers.” It has become much more than that in the ensuing almost eighteen years. Teenagers and young adults are essentially creating their brand. The rise of smartphones, social media, and con nectivity to the rest of the world pushes them to be fulltime brand manag ers who strive for likes, comments, upvotes, emojis, and hashtags. Stu dent athletes in New York can now be paid for use of their name, image, and likeness. How they present themselves to their friends, peers, potential friends, and the rest of the world is ex
There are two main reasons why kids spend so much time taking and posting photos: capturing a snapshot or event in their life and validation of those events. We know that Centenni als value experiences over possessions. Posting pics is a fantastic way to keep a record of the experiences they’ve had and with whom they’ve shared those experiences. Kids upload photos, tag their friends, and everyone has a shared album of memories. Carefully culti vated pictures and videos capture mo ments in their lives. Those moments help to create connections to others as well.
Validation, on the other hand, is arguably the most significant reason teens and young adults post photos
18 WNY Family November 2022
online. They’ve captured a moment, and now they are putting themselves out there for the whole world to see. In return, teens are seeking instant posi tive feedback or approval in the form of likes and comments. To better un derstand validation, we can use selfies as an example. Many selfies are posted with filters to enhance the image and add passive-aggressive text designed to encourage people to provide positive feedback. Unfortunately, these types of posts only strengthen the perception that image is everything, and getting likes is the key to happiness. Anxiety, depression, and self-doubt all rise when teens measure their worth by the num ber of likes they receive.
What does this mean for parents?
A teenager having a “finsta” ac count isn’t necessarily a bad thing. These kids recognize that not every thing should be shared for the world to see. These accounts are for your teen’s inner circle. Parents should be aware of these accounts, but I’d caution against “policing” these too much. Your child could merely create a new account and redirect friends to the new name if they feel you’re too nosy or overprotective. The best thing a parent can do is have an open conversation about this.
Adults need to understand that today’s children hear feedback from more than just their inner circle of friends and classmates. Teens and young adults are global citizens who have a vast network of peers that con tinually supply them with comments, criticisms, and validation. Social me dia is here to stay, and so are all the good and bad things that go along with it. With that in mind, there are several things you can do to help limit the im pact social media has on a child’s im age and self-esteem.
• Be Careful – Most of the re search on this topic suggested ap proaching conversations on this topic with caution. Teens place enormous value on their social circles. Starting the conversation with “back in my day” may put a continued on page 37
November 2022 WNY Family 19
© The Pinkfong Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Pinkfong™ and Baby Shark™ are trademarks of The Pinkfong Company, Inc., registered or pending rights worldwide. Shea’s Performing Arts Center December 21, 2022 babysharklive.com Tickets on sale at the Shea’s Box Office or Ticketmaster.com
It is time to plan a family vaca tion. You have all agreed on the destination and when you will go, and it’s time to book your flights, ho tels, and maybe a rental car.
But wait! There may be something important you are forgetting to arrange as part of your travel plans — travel in surance.
Most all of us know about car in surance, homeowner’s insurance, health insurance, and life insurance but how many of us know about the ins and outs of travel insurance?
First question: Do you even need travel insurance? If you are going on an auto trip and have refundable hotel res ervations the answer is likely no. Medi cal insurance generally covers out of the area emergencies in the United States. If you are driving outside the country, check with your health insurer to make sure out of country emergencies are cov ered.
But as soon as you are consider ing nonrefundable home rentals or hotel reservations, it is time to consider travel insurance. Many travelers caught in the recent Florida hurricane and storms did not plan for that emergency. Closed air
— by Deborah Williams
ports, evacuation orders, and general chaos confronted thousands of travelers.
Those with insurance had 24-hour phone assistance and coverage for additional expenses such as hotels outside the hur ricane zone and rental car costs.
You should consider buying trav el insurance if you are worried about something happening at your destina tion; if you are afraid something might happen that would make you cancel or interrupt your trip; or if you are not sure what you would do if you had a medical emergency while you were traveling.
Before you consider buying travel insurance, check with your credit card company. Some credit cards include travel insurance as a benefit, providing you purchase your trip with that card. Review your benefits and call the com pany to make sure you are clear about the details to assure yourself that the card benefits will meet your needs.
If you are considering travel insur ance, you should buy the policy as soon as you make your initial payment to wards your planned trip. If your trip in
volves flying, that would be at the same time as you buy your flight.
The advantage of buying travel insurance early is that your plan could include time sensitive benefits. Three of these benefits include pre-existing medi cal condition coverage, canceling for any reason, and bankruptcy of the travel provider.
These benefits add important cov erage to your policy, but they are only available within 10-21 days after paying your initial trip deposit.
There is an old rule of thumb re garding travel insurance — the longer it takes to get to a destination, the more that trip needs travel insurance. The more your trip costs, the more you usu ally need travel insurance.
Travel insurance typically covers various travel related risks, from flight cancellations to lost bags to medical emergencies. The dollar amount of your coverage depends on the policy you bought and where and when you bought it. Most travel insurance providers offer several different policies to choose from, with higher or lower levels of coverage and higher or lower prices to match.
You can buy policies that cover a
20 WNY Family November 2022
single trip, multiple trips or a full year. You can buy an individual policy or one that covers your entire family.
Incidents not covered by your travel insurance vary by policy and provider.
Pre-existing medical conditions are often excluded, meaning your benefits don’t apply to claims related to that con dition. Insurance companies check your past medical records before paying a claim. Generally, the older you are the more chances there are that you have some pre-existing conditions. However, many policies cover pre-existing medi cal conditions if you meet certain crite ria such as paying for your insurance at the time of booking, and you were well enough when you booked your trip.
Do you plan on some activities that might be considered high risk? Many policies won’t cover you if something goes wrong. That might be fine with you but be sure to clarify what activities are covered. Other incidents excluded from your policy may involve war, acts of ter rorism, and the use of alcohol or the use of drugs, which may be illegal.
If you want full flexibility to cancel your trip you will need to find a policy that allows you to purchase a Cancel for any Reason add-on. This policy will cost more. This additional benefit does ex actly what the name implies and allows you to cancel your trip for any reason. Typically, you will get around 75% of your prepaid nonrefundable trip expens es back.
Terra Baykal, senior marketing manager for World Nomads, a highly rated travel insurance company that began 20 years ago in Australia, said traditionally Americans purchase travel insurance for international travel at a much lower rate than residents of other countries.
“For instance, about 50% of Aus tralians traveling internationally pur chase travel insurance while only about 23% of Americans do the same,” she said. “The idea of the benefits in case of emergencies is important but so is the idea that insurance offers peace of mind to travelers.”
on page 36
This Holiday Make Every Child’s Dream Come True...
American Academy of Ballet’s Magical Production of
New York City
New York City Ballet
American Academy of Ballet’s Nutcracker is Mesmerizing!
“There is so much to love about The Nutcracker and this version in particular. This Nutcracker will leave you in awe from the opening scene until Clara awakens from her magical journey through dreamland.” Buffalo News Review * December 2015
available at: Center Box Office
- Fri. Noon - 6pm)
November 2022 WNY Family 21
All Performances at UB Center for the Arts, Main Stage www.aab-buffalo.com
and through ticketmaster.com PRICES: $32.00, $28.00 or $24.00 Saturday, december 3rd 1:00 pm & 6:00 pm STARRING: Brittany Pollack Principal,
For Information, Call: 716-645-ARTS
Violet Turns Two
It’sreally hard to believe, but Violet just turned two years old in September. I keep asking myself where the time went, and I have no explanation or answer. However, I do know it went fast. It feels like only yes terday when I drove Andrea to the hospi tal in what felt like slow-motion, making sure to avoid every pothole and speed bump in Buffalo, while at the same time, trying not to hit any red lights or traffic. And here I am today, with this opinion ated tiny bundle of joy who has an ador able attitude.
Unlike her first birthday party, we kept this one simple. We had a small gathering in our backyard made up of grandparents, cousins, aunts, and uncles. A few weeks before her party, we started asking Violet birthday-related ques tions, hoping to show her how birthdays work. “How old are you going to be, Violet?” and “Are you excited to open presents?” But she didn’t seem to catch on. I think she understood that some thing big was happening, just not sure of what it was exactly. Although, when it came time to open presents, she seemed to understand that part quite well. With a little bit of assistance from me, she tore straight through layers of wrap ping paper and demolished gift bags, all containing books, clothes, and toys of all sorts. There was even a mechanical horse that she could sit on and ride with a little bit of bodyweight application.
Along with Violet turning two years old came an influx of new “party tricks,” as we like to call them. Party tricks be
cause, like the proud parents we are, we’re constantly showing them off to our friends and family any chance we get, even if they’re not that exciting for everyone. Some of these tricks include, but are not limited to, Violet randomly singing a new nursery rhyme that she picked up at daycare and putting 3-word combinations to gether that nei ther Andrea nor myself taught her. “Dadda, come sit” or “Come on, Momma,” are just a few. When she said to me one night at the dinner table, “Dada, shhh, lower voice,” I knew she picked that one up from Andrea.
The noticeable change in Violet in the span of a year is fascinating. This time last year she wasn’t walking, or talking, or really doing much of any thing. And if all these milestones oc curred in only a year, what will she be doing next year? Will she be more like a little kid and less like a curious toddler? Completing full sentences and retaining more information?
Violet is becoming more kid-like every day and less and less like the baby I remember her as. And as she gains more independence, I wonder if she’ll
still cling to me as much as she does right now. The thought of that alone terrifies me; her not needing me as much, or at all. Andrea and I have dedicated so much time to making Violet act independently, that I worry she won’t look to us as much for help when she’s three. Which doesn’t sound terrible either, since we’d have the freedom from having to hover over her constantly. But, it also saddens me, knowing that one day she might not look to me as her beacon anymore.
There is a part of me that wishes I could keep her this way forever; usually happy to see me, easily excited, and plen ty of couch snuggles. I’m also anticipat ing the future because I’m so intrigued to know what she’s thinking about, and I want to know how she feels about every thing — life, school, family, favorite TV show. But now that she’s already two, I’m reconsidering how fast I want her to grow up.
I once heard someone describe par enting as nothing more than a struggle to try and keep your children alive. And to some extent, I agree. It does feel like since Violet was born, I’ve been living on the edge of my seat, worrying about her every move, doing ev erything in my power to keep her safe. But I know there’s more to it than that. Personally, I just want her to be happy. And I guess that’s why I wor ry so much; about her, about her fu ture. About everything. My mother said to me once, “I only live to make my children happy and that’s all that matters to me.” And I couldn’t agree more.
Richard De Fino, a freelance writer by night, first became a father at age 34. After losing his first-born son Louis, at birth, he was determined to keep his memory alive the best way he knew how; through words. Now, with the birth of his daughter Violet, he plans on continuing to share his fatherhood journey each month with WNY Family readers.
22 WNY Family November 2022
Family Movie Options: In Theaters and Streaming Online
Lyle, Lyle Crocodile
Hocus Pocus 2
Rating Overall Violence Sex Profanity Alcohol/Drugs P G A B A A B
The Primm family have just moved into a new home and are astonished to discover a singing crocodile in the attic. Young Josh befriends the musical reptile and soon the y all band together to stop a neighbor from having Lyle sent to a zoo. This film is a win for families , featuring appealing characters, m emorable original songs, and exciting adventures. There’s too much peril for preschoolers, but older kids will enjoy this fun, light, heartwarming film and even parents will have more fun than they expect
© Columbia Pictures
Rating Overall Violence Sex Profanity Alcohol/Drugs
A B A B A
Accidentally brought back to life by a group of friends trying to have some spooky Halloween fun, the three Sanderson sisters set out to make a potion that will let them live forever... with campy adventures all the while. It’s rare that a sequel is better than the original film, but this one is. There is less sexual innuendo and violence and the jokes are much funnier. Plus, viewers get to hear Bette Midler belt out a Blondie song. Photo ©Disney+
Rosaline is horrified to discover that her boyfriend the guy who has given her jewelry and written poetry for her has fallen in love with her cousin. Refusing to give up without a fight, Rosaline turns her sharp mind to the goal of breaking up Romeo and Juliet. More than a little bit goofy, this adaptation of Shakespeare’s iconic tragedy is a laugh out loud comedy that refuses to t ake itself seriously and that’s why it works. This could change
to keep his manor afloat, spendthrift Lord Rollo decides that his best option is to marry off his 14 year old daughter for gold. But Catherine a.k.a. Birdy has other ideas and is stubborn and devious enough to thwart her father.
on an award winning novel, this film veers between ahistoric comedy and strong messages delivered with far less nuance than most
would like .
Paid to read to Mr. Harrigan, Craig soon warms to the enigmatic elderly man. He even persuades the technophobic senior to start using a cell phone. Upon Mr. Harrigan’s unsurprising death, Craig tucks the phone into the casket only to start recei ving texts from it. This adaptation of a Stephen King story is a great choice for teens who want a good scare. It’s eerie and creepy but eschews on screen violence in favor of
November 2022 WNY Family 23
Hulu Rating Overall
Sex Profanity Alcohol/Drugs PG-13 B B+ B+ C C
Photo © Hulu Catherine, Called Birdy Amazon Rating Overall Violence Sex Profanity Alcohol/Drugs PG 13 B B B C C Desperate
Photo © Amazon Studios Mr. Harrigan’s Phone Netflix Rating Overall Violence Sex Profanity Alcohol/Drugs PG - 13 B - C A C - B -
tension . Photo © Netflix Detailed reviews available at www.parentpreviews.com
– by Peggy Gisler and Marge Eberts
Exploring Educa tion
A Special Pull-Out Section
Want to reach local parents who VALUE the EDUCATION of their children?
Showcase your school, orga nization or education-related business to tens of thousands of WNY parents in this annual pull-out section. Editorial con tent focuses on various aspects of education in WNY, targeted to elementary grades and higher, including college.
Space Reservation: Thursday, November 10, 2022
Copy & Materials: Tuesday, November 15, 2022
For more information, call your account rep directly or call our Advertising Department at 716-836-3486 ext. 104
The Dilemma Faced by Parents of Bright Kindergartener
I have a young son who learns things rather easily. He began reading at three. And now at five, he can add, sub tract, and multiply and understands frac tions. He also can do his older cousin’s third grade work. The local school placed him in kindergarten. Their policy is not to advance children until third grade and then for only one grade. He enjoyed kin dergarten at first because he got to play and made new friends.
Recently, the class started to learn the alphabet and count to 10, and our son began to hate school because it was so boring. We asked the teacher if he could bring his own books to read while the oth er kids did what he already knew. She said that the books were not age appropriate.
We have now taken him out of school and let him learn at home. Next year, when he is six, he will have to return to school. Can anything be done in public schools for an advanced learner, or do we need to consider homeschooling? — Per plexed
Answer: Parents of gifted children like your son have the responsibility of finding creative ways to keep learning interesting for their children. A failure to do so can result at times in gifted children becoming so bored with school that they actually become disinterested in learning. You need to become educated on all fac ets of giftedness.
You can find abundant information by going online and searching for gifted organizations. One helpful site is the Da vidson Institute (davidsongifted.org) as it has a list of gifted organizations that deal with different facets of giftedness as
well as their lists of resources. Our Dear Teacher website also has a list of organi zations in the helpful websites section.
Be sure to also investigate what or ganizations for the gifted are available at your local and state levels. They can give you the opportunity to interact with the parents of other gifted children. Within your area, there will be other bright young children like your son. Become part of a gifted organization to learn of all the ways to give your son an education that match es his abilities.
Gifted students tend to stay advanced of their peers throughout their years in school unless they become bored and disinterested in learning. Do not con sider your son’s time in kindergarten a complete negative, there were some ben efits. Your son was learning socialization skills and acquiring some art and music skills. Many teachers would not have the attitude of this kindergarten teacher and would have set him loose on the computer and in books to provide a more challeng ing curriculum.
Finding the appropriate education for gifted children is always challeng ing. It has become more difficult in some communities that have eliminated gifted programs in favor of the same curriculum for all students in order to make educa tion the same for everyone no matter their ability level.
If your son continues in this local public school for first grade, he obviously will not be advanced several grades. You might want to look for a different public school or a private one that would let him do more challenging work in the class room, skip him one or two grades, or let
24 WNY Family November 2022
Helping all parents make their children’s educational experience as successful as possible
COMING UP IN DECEMBER 2022
55,000 of them each month!
him take classes such as reading and math on a more advanced level while letting him remain in first grade for most of the day.
Homeschooling is a viable option if you have the family situation to do it. There are now a great number of exciting programs to choose from so you would not necessarily have to develop a special curriculum for your son. Furthermore, homeschooling is no longer just an iso lated at home experience. Homeschoolers can get together with other homeschool ers to offer an exciting curriculum on several levels. This is more like a school. Also, you could join other homeschool ers for field trips and special advanced classes.
The Best Ways to Study for Tests
Question: My children have a lot of tests in middle school and high school. What should they be doing to prepare for these tests? — Concerned Parents
Answer: The best way to study for any test is for them to use as many of their senses as they can. For example, they can write note cards, reread the note cards out loud, or even study with a friend.
Surprisingly, did you know that change is good for studying? Instead of staying in just one spot, it has been discov ered that actually changing the study envi ronment makes for more effective learn ing. So, if your children are only studying in their rooms, suggest they consider mov ing to another room or even outdoors at times. In this way, they are forcing their brains to make multiple associations with the same material. It enriches the material and slows down forgetting.
And of course, they should take prac tice tests and quizzes. It gives them prac tice in retrieving material, which seems to make recalling it on actual tests easier. In fact, the harder the trial test material is to remember, the harder it is to forget later. This is a strong argument for their always completing study guide questions and textbook questions in preparation for a test.
Parents should send questions and com ments to email@example.com, and visit the dearteacher.com website to learn more about helping their children succeed in school.
TOWN OF CHEEKTOWAGA DEPARTMENT OF YOUTH & RECREATIONAL SERVICES
Winter Recreation CelebrationWinter Recreation Celebration
Friday, December 2nd Christmas On Ice Cheektowaga Ice Rink
Skate Free With Donation of New Gloves/Mittens/Hats
Saturday, December 3rd Spaghetti with Santa Alexander Community Center 12pm - 2pm (Pre-Registration Necessary)
Friday, December 9th Join us for a Winter Celebration Stiglmeier Park
6pm – 8pm
Bring the family for a fun night of pictures with Santa, decorations, and fireworks!
Fireworks at 7:30pm
All events hosted by the Cheektowaga Youth and Recreation Department and Sponsored by Legislator Tim Meyers
FOR MORE INFORMATION CALL 897-7207 Town of Cheektowaga • Erie County, NY
November 2022 WNY Family 25
TWEENS & TEENS
— by Tanni Haas, Ph.D.
Raising Happy Teens:
Tips for Parents
Toparents of teens, the title of this article may seem surprising. Teens and hap piness? What could that possibly mean?
Teens often walk around with a sullen demeanor, but it doesn’t have to be that way. There is a lot that parents can do to help their teens stay happy — at least most of the time! Here’s what the ex perts suggest:
Involve Them In Extracurricular Activities
Teens spend their time and energy worrying about how they look to others, especially friends. But too much intro spection doesn’t really make anyone happy. Happy teens are those who are able to look beyond themselves and en gage with others. One of the best things you can do for your teens is encourage them to take up extracurricular activi ties like arts and crafts, music, or sports. “Extracurricular activities create struc ture,” says Kaela Scott, a well-known therapist, “and research has shown that those involved in these activities have higher self-esteem.” Simply put, partici pating in extra-curricular activities make teens feel good about themselves.
confide in. “Teens crave the security of knowing their parents understand them, appreciate them, and love them no mat ter what,” says clinical psychologist Dr. Laura Markham, author of Peaceful Par ent, Happy Kids. “So, they do want the relationship to be a form of friendship.”
… And Listen Well
… And Volunteer Opportunities
Teens are even happier when they’re doing something meaningful for others instead of just hanging out with others. As educational psychologist Dr. Michelle Borba, the author of UnSelfie: Why Empathetic Kids Succeed in Our All-About-Me World many other parenting books, puts it, “Kids are happier when they give to others, not when they get for themselves.” Encour age your teens to look for volunteer oppor tunities like coaching a little league baseball team or being a compan ion to elderly people in an assisted living facility.
Be A ParentAnd A Friend
Another thing that makes teens happy is when parents treat them as friends and not just as kids. Teens need you to guide them into adulthood and to teach them how to make good choices, but they also need you to be there for them as people that they can trust and
To be a genuine friend to your teens, listen carefully to what they share with you and try not to judge them. “Teens want to feel heard but don’t necessar ily want advice,” says developmental psychologist Jessica Cleary. “Validating their experience without judgment will result in your teen confiding in you more often, bringing you closer together.” For example, if they tell you about a prob lem they’re having with a close friend, don’t try to come up with a solution to the issue right away. Show them that you understand what they’re going through, assure them that it’s a common experi ence, and recount similar experiences you had as a teen.
Be A Role Model
To raise happy teens, you need to be happy yourself. “When you’re in an emotionally generous mood,” Dr. Markham says, “everything changes — you’re pa tient, you’re warm, you’re giving, and your kid blos soms.” Con versely, she says, “If you’re in a bad mood, what unfolds with your kid is going to be tense, they’re go ing to act out to get your attention, they’re going to be anxious, they’ll begin to echo your tone of voice.” So, do things that make you really happy. It’s good for you — and for your teens.
Tanni Haas, Ph.D. is a Professor in the Department of Communication Arts, Sciences & Disorders at the City Uni versity of New York – Brooklyn College
26 WNY Family November 2022
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Single Parents CAN have JoyPeace and
this: Peace comes when we are happy with the path we’re on and have a pretty good idea where the path is leading us, even if we aren’t always successful or don’t always feel joyous along the way. Happiness is in making the journey, not in the reward.
no doubt that having children is probably the single most significant life-changing experience any of us face. Talk to any couple and they will tell you that the birth of their first child was one of those life markers they tend to measure their lives by — “I think that happened in 2014, because that was a year after little Susie was born,” we often say with a smile. For many single parents, though, the start of a “third” life came after a divorce, another significant life marker usually marked by scars rather than joy — “Oh, yes, that was the year before THE DIVORCE,” we moan.
Divorce is a significant experience not only because of the hurt and pain that accompany it, but it is a time when many single parents, especially mothers, feel trapped between the responsibilities of parenthood and making a living.
There’s increased pressure to be everything to the children because we feel guilty or are concerned about the ill affects divorce will have on them. Then there is the need to excel in the workplace to establish stability and income security — again, for the sake of the children and, frankly, basic survival. When a parent must do both, she finds herself agonizing over childcare issues — “I never meant for someone else to raise my child” — and financial worries — “I just can’t make it on one income.”
— by Diane C. Dierks, LMFT, CFLE
These concerns are common ones and, unfortunately, have no easy remedies. Yet, I strongly believe that no matter what life hands us, we always have choices. After divorce, the negative life marker will always be part of your life, but it doesn’t have to mean the end of a joyful and peaceful existence. In fact, it could mean a whole new beginning of joy and peace that may have eluded you in marriage.
Everything is a trade-off. We trade time for money and money for time on a daily basis. We barter, beg, and borrow based on our priority system. If it’s important enough, we make time or spend money because it matters. So, what it boils down to is asking yourself the question, “What brings me joy and peace?”
For most parents, joy comes in watching kids grow successfully, with strong self-esteems and exposure to many opportunities. One of the ways I believe God allows us to tolerate the rigors and emotionally draining aspects of parenting is in providing that wonderful feeling of joy when kids do or say something that helps us to know they are on the right track.
What about peace? Over the years, I have developed my own definition for peace, which goes something like
The first step in determining what your choices are is in defining what will bring you joy and peace, and putting those at the top of your priority list. For example, if working full-time is robbing you of peace because you can’t keep track of your teenager after school or you don’t trust the low-cost childcare you have chosen, then find another way. Maybe the only reason you are in the job you are in is because it pays well. But if you hate it, you probably are not feeling very joyful about your work. I’m not saying that you should be going to work skipping and jumping, but you should derive some satisfaction or reward from the time that dominates your life.
Secondly, you need to be resourceful and look for opportunities. There are a million and one job sites on the Internet. There are books galore about home-based business ideas that could bring you more money and satisfaction.
Three years after I became a single parent, I decided to reduce my fulltime job to part-time because I wanted to get my college degree before my kids got theirs! I started looking in the local papers and answered an ad for a freelance writer. I began writing for a public relations firm that paid me more than I was making part-time at my job. I was able to work from home, go to school while my kids were in school, and be there when they got home.
My son tells me now that it was one of the happiest moments of his life when he was able to come home on the bus for the first time and find me there. I would not have found that opportunity if I had not been seeking and keeping all my options open to achieve my goal of joy and peace.
“Seek and you shall find” is a Biblical
28 WNY Family November 2022
verse that still applies today. If you are:
ß Tired of struggling with your teen: Go to counseling, focus on your similarities, listen more attentively
ß Frustrated with your job: Find another one, work for yourself
ß Worried about money: Cut expenses, get out of debt, find a new way to make more money, sell what you don’t need
ß Feeling bad about yourself: Learn a new skill, attend church, step out and make new friends, talk to someone who will encourage you
A single parent friend of mine recently told me that she got tired of the corporate world, nylons, and high heels. She is the creative type, so she began making jewelry and selling it and started an interior artistry design business. She says money is really tight, but she and her son just laugh about it. “I’m here for the best time in his life. I can’t imagine ever looking back and wishing I did anything else.”
We live in a society that often teaches us to be a victim of our circumstances. We dupe ourselves into thinking someone else must be to blame for our trials and tribulations. If only my ex had not left me… if only the landlord would understand… if only my kids were not so rebellious. We can fill our lives with “if onlys” but that won’t bring us peace and joy. Only our choices can determine that.
Diane C. Dierks is a licensed marriage and family therapist in Atlanta, Georgia. She is co-host of the new podcast, Co-Parent Dilemmas (www. CPDilemmas.com, or wherever you get your podcasts). She is also author of The Co-Parent Toolbox (2014 Aha! Publishing) and Solo Parenting: Raising Strong & Happy Families (1997 Fairview Press).
Vaping can cause irreversible lung damage. Get the facts about youth vaping.
November 2022 WNY Family 29
Meet Kasseem Harris!
is a recent 2021 graduate from Bennett High School in Buffalo. He had limited work experience but was very interested in exploring what his vocational future might hold. He was referred by ACCESS VR to Com munity Services for Every1, where his journey began. Kas seem started working with the Supported Employment Team located at Community Services’ Jefferson Ca reer Exploration Center.
At this center, people of all abilities can try out differ ent jobs and work with trained profes sionals to help plan for their futures. It was here that Kasseem was able to iden tify skills he wanted to work on, such as time-management, communication, and
problem-solving skills. Kasseem and his Job Coach worked closely together to work on these skills. They were even able to secure driving lessons to increase his mobility in the community. Using technology and firsthand opportunities, Kasseem worked dili gently to complete as sessment tools such as Career Profiler, ONet, and Virtual Job Shadow programs to narrow down his in terests, explore career choices, research edu cational requirements, projected job outlook, and future wages. At the Career Center, he met regularly with his Job Coach and tried out “firsthand “opportu nities in both the Culinary and Auto De tail Suites to gauge his abilities, stamina, and motivation to work. Kasseem is a
Specia l N eeds Insp ire
Advocate P otential Growth
self-taught musician and his passion for film and music quickly became evident.
After he completed his first year at Houghton College, Kasseem’s Job Coach assisted him in securing an internship in the Corporate Communications Depart ment at Community Services for Every1, which he still attends. Here he works on a variety of projects, including helping create marketing and promotional mate rials. Other projects he’s getting insight and experience with include recording a podcast, digital editing, and planning and creating Tik Toks.
“My internship with Community Services for Every1 has been a huge, great opportunity for me,” said Harris. “I’ve learned a lot more than I thought I would. I know especially about the ed iting process of videos and photos, but these are only a small fraction of what we’ve been working on.”
Kasseem has also been assisting with some of the behind the scenes work on agency events, such as the agency’s November Rockin’ With Every1 fun draiser. “The events the agency holds are very inclusive and gives everyone a chance to be their best selves,” he said.
He is supervised by Amanda Berg, the Coordinator of Corporate Commu nications and Special Events at Com munity Services. She said, “Watching Kasseem’s growth over the past several months has been great! He has put in a lot of time and hard work learning how to work on big-picture projects, from conceptualization to final product. We are currently working on domestic vio lence Tik Toks where Kasseem takes data that we are provided and turns it into something creative. It is not an easy pro cess, as it takes a lot of creative juices. I am very proud and glad to have him as an intern in our department.”
30 WNY Family November 2022
SUCCESS STORY DOES YOUR CHILD HAVE AUTISM? We’re here to help. We are WNY’s largest provider of evidence-based programs and services for autism. Our programs use Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) methodology – identified by hundreds of scientific studies as the most effective method to teach individuals with autism. Our goal is to help your child lead the most independent and fulfilling life possible. Call 716-629-3400 | Visit TheSummitCenter.org Comprehensive services for children and adults with autism. Support for your family. · Evaluations · Early Autism Program (Preschool) · Summit Academy (Ages 3-21) · Respite Programs · Pediatric Feeding Clinic · Recreation & Leisure Programs · Vocational & Employment Services · Adult Programs · Behavioral Health Clinic · Parent Training
Anne Marie Fur lani, Job Coach, said that “Working with Kasseem has been a career highlight for me. It has been my plea sure to help him ‘connect the dots’ along his voca tional journey. He came to us as a freshly graduated kid and is fast becoming a fine young adult. I have every faith in him that he will achieve his goals and dreams.”
“This is a huge learning experience for me,” added Kas seem. “I’ve learned so many topics and have new insight to the workplace. I hope people consider experiencing their journey through Community Services for Every1. It is a great place to learn and grow.”
Kasseem describes his dream job as working in the film in dustry. Everyone at Community Services is proud of his efforts, abilities, and formidable attitude!
Community Services for Ev ery1 partners with individu als of all abilities to reach their fullest potential, pro tecting their rights and pro moting their independence and inclusion in our community. To learn more about the wide array of services offered, visit csevery1.com or call 716-883-8888.
WNY Family Magazine just launched an Instagram page! You’ll find a variety of info, tips, resources & fun stuff that is different from our Facebook and Twitter feeds.
November 2022 WNY Family 31
RSV Season: What Parents Need to Know
Source: Mayo Clinic, October 14, 2022
syncytial virus (RSV), a virus that can cause severe problems, especially for young chil dren and older adults, has increased illness and hos pitalizations.
“We’re seeing relatively high rates of infection occur ear lier in the fall than usual,” says Dr. Nipunie Rajapakse, a pedi atric infectious diseases physician with the Mayo Clinic Chil dren’s Center. “Typically, we don’t see a lot of circulation of this virus until November. But this year, we are seeing much more than we generally see.”
It’s a prevalent virus that mostly causes mild, cold-like symptoms. Most children will be infected with the virus by age 2. But for some children, it can be severe.
“RSV virus is a respiratory virus. When it infects young children, especially those under 2 years of age, it causes inflam mation in the airways. It is the most common cause of bronchi olitis, inflammation of the small airways in the lung, and the most common cause of pneumonia in young kids,” says Dr. Rajapakse.
Dr. Rajapakse says because children have a small airway, when they develop inflammation due to RSV it can cause dif ficulty breathing. Because of this, many children need to be hos pitalized to manage their RSV infection, especially kids under 6 months old.
Early symptoms of RSV infection may be mild. It may take a few days into the illness for more severe symptoms to evolve.
“Symptoms of RSV include fever, coughing, difficulty breathing, wheezing, kids might not want to feed as much or have difficulty feeding, and they may be more fatigued than usual. The real things we make sure to ask parents to look out for are signs of difficulty breathing or working hard to breathe. This can include sucking in. You might notice it at the base of the throat or between the ribs, a child that’s breathing fast, a child that’s having difficulty breathing and feeding to the point where they’re getting dehydrated,” Dr. Rajapakse says.
32 WNY Family November 2022
people who have fevers or colds.
• Keep things clean. Make sure kitchen and bathroom countertops, doorknobs, and handles are clean. Discard used tissues right away.
• Don’t share drinking glasses with others.
• Don’t smoke. Babies exposed to to bacco smoke have a higher risk of getting RSV and potentially more severe symptoms.
• Wash toys regularly. Do this, especially when your child or a playmate is sick.
Along with those tips, Dr. Rajapak se says the measures that were adopted for the COVID-19 pandemic are also effective for helping slow the spread of other respiratory viruses, like RSV.
“RSV is a respiratory virus, so it’s spread by respiratory droplets or by touching droplets from someone who’s infected. Avoiding people who are sick, washing your hands, even wearing a mask would prevent transmission of RSV as well,” adds Dr. Rajapakse. Chil dren under 2 are not recommended to wear masks.
Respiratory Syncytial Virus
Symptoms of RSV
It can be hard to tell the difference between RSV, COVID-19, and flu as symptoms may be similar:
that infects the nose, throat, lungs, and
✔ Wash your hands with soap and water
✔ Cover coughs and sneezes
✔ Clean frequently touched surfaces
✔ Avoid close contact with others who may be sick
✔ Stay home when you are sick
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November 2022 WNY Family 33
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One Parent’s Experience:
Multiple times my husband and I looked at each other and said “Are we really having triplets?”or “We are going to have six kids! Six!” I kept thinking I would wake up from this crazy dream and I would go back to being the average family with three kids.
3 to 6 in Fourteen Weeks
One year ago we were an av erage family. We had three children ages 8, 6, and 2 and we were busy with the average family things like dance lessons, scouts, sports, and homework. I was a busy but happy mom of three kids, feeling content with where my life was at the moment. Look ing back things were easy, simple even. One year ago, something unexpected hap pened that affected everything about our family. Things would no longer be simple.
Last February my husband and I had just returned from a weekend trip alone. While we were out of town, I felt unusu ally tired and nauseous. You can probably see where this is going but at the time, I was clueless. We had taken precautions to prevent pregnancy and had mutually decided our family was complete. After living in denial for another week, I finally went out and bought a pregnancy test. Fully expecting to get a negative result, I was shocked it was actually positive.
The first few months of the pregnan cy were rough. I had horrendous morn ing sickness and I was having a hard time hiding my growing belly. I felt physically and mentally drained as my husband and I tried to adjust to the thought of having four children. Despite the rough start, by the time we were scheduled for our twen ty-week ultrasound, we were excited to find out the gender and we had finally become comfortable with the idea of a fourth child.
— by Sarah Lyons
We held hands and waited as the so nographer prepared for the ultrasound. She squirted warm gel on my belly and ran the wand across my stomach.
“Dad, you may want to sit down,” she said.
My husband took a seat and I felt my heart jump. Was something wrong?
“Do multiples run in your family?” she asked.
“Twins?” My husband asked in a panicked voice.
“Well, twins for sure but I may have seen another baby, too.”
We exchanged shocked glances as the doctor confirmed there were in fact three babies. Three! One girl and two boys. Tears streamed down my face as she looked closer at each baby. Never in my life have I been so surprised, worried, happy, and stressed at the same time. We would soon be parents to six children. I was pregnant with triplets.
The next week was like a strange dream. I would go from tears of panic to pure amazement at the miracle of it all. A sleepless week passed before I could re ally start letting it sink in. I would try to make a to-do list or research triplet preg nancy and I would get over whelmed with panic and worry.
I worried constantly. Would I deliver early? Would there be complications? How would we manage three babies? How would we afford six children? There were so many questions that I could get lost in the panic. I made a decision then and there to accept that our life would no longer be average or simple. and it was okay. I decided to view these babies as the miracles they are rather than a con stant source of worry and disruption.
As the pregnancy continued it be came much more difficult and day to day tasks started to become nearly impos sible. I started to go into labor too early and was put on bedrest for a total of six weeks. I spent two of these in the hospi tal. I missed out on a fun summer with my kids and the first day of school. It was difficult, but I kept pushing myself for ward with the goal of healthy babies in my mind.
At 34 weeks pregnant I went in for a weekly ultrasound and was told there were some complications with the babies and I would deliver them that day. Just an hour and a half later, 14 weeks after we found out we were having not one but three babies, our triplets arrived.
I had a C section, a totally new ex perience for me, and as each was born, I prayed and hoped they were healthy. The babies were whisked past me one by one on their way to the NICU. It was hours before I would get to see them and days before I was allowed to hold them.
34 WNY Family November 2022
continued on page 39
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World Nomads, like many insur ance companies, offers 24/7 emergency assistance. It offers family plans cover ing two adults and up to seven depen dents.
When considering whether to pur chase travel insurance, she reminds trav elers that they will often engage in ac tivities that they don’t do in normal life such as hiking in mountains, ziplining, or scuba diving.
“In the excitement of travel to new places, people often don’t pay attention to where they are walking and accidents can happen,” she said. “Insurance can be a life saver and a trip saver.”
Many experts consider insurance a must have for certain trips. Top of this list would be cruises and international travel. If trouble arises you will be glad you have insurance.
Although cruise ships maintain well equipped medical centers staffed by doctors and nurses, serious conditions require transport to land-based hospi
tals. If possible, ships will make a detour to a nearby port but, if that is not possible, a helicopter air lift is arranged.
Several times while cruising I watched as a medical helicopter hovered over the ship and the patient was put in a basket and pulled into the copter. It was both awesome and terrify ing but somehow re assuring that, if I ever needed urgent medi cal care, trained workers were available. I was also glad that I had insurance but vowed to do everything to avoid the need for a medical evacuation.
The U.S. Department of State Bu reau of Consular Affairs recommends travel insurance for anyone traveling in ternationally.
People often wonder if travel insur ance is worth the investment. Like auto insurance or homeowner’s insurance, you always hope you won’t need the insurance and your travels will be calm with no medical or other emergencies. If the worst happens, insurance has the potential to help reimburse you for hun dreds of thousands of dollars of covered travel related expenses like emergency evacuation, medical bills, and costs re lated to trip cancellation and interrup tion.
Travel mishaps are surprisingly common, and insurance helps travelers in time of crisis. A child’s illness, a par ent’s surgery, or a job loss is traumatic enough without the prospect of losing everything you paid up front for your vacation.
Travel Tip of the Month: For infor mation on various travel insurance com panies visit insuremytrip.com to compare various policies and costs. For informa tion on World Nomads visit worldno mads.com. For U.S. State Dept. travel in formation advisories visit travel.state.gov
Deborah Williams lives in Holland, NY and is a veteran travel writer whose work has appeared in national and in ternational publications. She is the re cipient of the Society of American Travel Writers’ Lowell Thomas Gold Travel Writing Award.
36 WNY Family November 2022
FAMILY TRAVEL continued...
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negative spin on the discussion be fore the dialogue can even begin. Re member, they don’t know what life was like 30 years ago. Instead, focus on trends or current events related to social media. If you’re looking for a conversation starter, the issues with YouTube celebrities such as Logan Paul could be a good jumping-off point.
• Talk to them about the pictures they choose to post – Ask them why they decided to post a specific photo. Find out what it was about a photo that they liked. You can do the same with pictures they didn’t like. There’s a fantastic article on CNN that came out recently that suggests parents ask why they chose to pose the way they did. What response were they hoping to elicit with that pose? Additionally, have a conversation about how likes, comments, etc. on their posts make them feel.
• Inside over outside – Teach your kids to write en couraging/positive comments on their peer’s posts based on who they are, not what they look like. Show them how to focus on the inside, not the outside. This is a com pelling idea. They can help eliminate issues with self-es
teem in others by focusing on the person, not their image.
Encourage them – Parents and teachers play a critical role in how a child views themselves. Teach them to make positive statements about themselves. In stead of posting an image that’s fishing for compliments, encourage your kids/ students to make positive self-statements.
Positive Role Models – There’s a fantastic list of positive role models on Common Sense Media that can be used as guidance for teens and for the conversations above. You can find it on their website (commonsensemedia.org).
Mike Daugherty is a husband, father of three young children, author, speaker, Google Innovator, and possible Starbucks ad dict. He is a certified educational technology leader who has served in a variety of roles through his twenty-year career in public education. Currently, Mike is the Director of Technol ogy for the Chagrin Falls Exempted Village School district in Northeast Ohio. As an IT director he has developed creative, well thought out solutions that positively impact teaching and learning.
November 2022 WNY Family 37
RAISING DIGITAL KIDS continued...
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LET’S TALK TURKEY!
If you haven’t done so before, cooking a Thanksgiving turkey can be intimidating, though it’s actually very easy to roast a turkey. This is especially true if you cook the stuffing outside the bird, which is highly recom mended.
Cooking turkey is simple, and some little ones enjoy wrestling with the big bird. Safety first – keep hands and sur faces clean before and after handling raw poultry. If using a frozen bird, thaw in the refrigerator for a few days (around one day per every 5 pounds). Place thawed turkey in a roasting pan, cover with foil, and cook until done. An un stuffed 20-pound turkey will take about 3 ½ - 4 hours to cook.
You can fill the bird with aromat ics like onions, oranges, lemon, thyme, rosemary, bay leaves, apples, carrots, or whatever flavors you like.
You’ll find a 3-minute video show ing how to cook a turkey, which is very easy to follow online here: http://www. youtube.com/watch?v=VgQ3VaBmR8s
This video will show you how to carve a turkey: https://www.youtube. com/watch?v=1_XVFGHXAoQ
A few tips:
n When selecting a turkey, check to be sure there are none of your al lergens in the ingredients. To flavor or moisten turkey, manufacturers may include additives, like “natural flavorings,” modified food starch, dairy, soy, etc.
n In general, estimate 1 pound of turkey per person if you don’t want many leftovers. Since our family loves leftovers, we double or triple that.
n Never thaw a turkey at room tem perature. It takes about 1 day per 4-5 pounds of turkey when thawing in the refrigerator. So, a 15-pound turkey will take about 3 days. For more information on thawing tur key, the Butterball website is very helpful at www.butterball.com. Also on their website is informa tion on brining, carving, grilling, and selecting your turkey.
n The broth I prefer is Kitchen Ba sics. Their broths contain none of the top 8 allergens, gluten or MSG. Always read the label for ingredi ents to be sure.
Oven Roasted Turkey
Free of: DAIRY, EGGS, SOY, PEANUTS, TREE NUTS, FISH, SHELLFISH, WHEAT, and GLUTEN free
Yield: varies with turkey, uncooked about 1 pound per adult
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: approx. 25 minutes per pound, thawed, unstuffed; about 35 minutes per pound if stuffed
1 turkey, thawed (size depends on the number of servings you want)
2 cups turkey, chicken, or vegetable stock
1 onion, cut in half
2 stalks celery, cut in pieces to fit in the bird
2 carrots, cut into pieces to fit in the bird
Oil, salt, and pepper
Preheat oven to 325°. Place turkey in roasting pan. Fill the cavity with onion, celery and carrots. Using your hand, lightly coat the turkey with oil. Salt and pepper to taste. Pour about a cup of the broth in the bottom of the pan. Tent with foil. Halfway through cooking time, pour another cup of broth in the bottom of the pan, recover with foil and cook until done, when turkey is about 180° and the juices run clear.
Let the turkey rest for about 15-20 minutes before carving, allowing the juices to re-absorb into the meat.
If you have any questions about our column, e-mail Kathy at allergy@ roadrunner.com. For further infor mation about food allergies, contact FARE www.foodallergy.org, or call 1-800-929-4040.
Kathy Lundquist is a Western New York parent whose son, now an adult, was born with severe food al lergies. Over the last two decades, she has worked tirelessly, in a vari ety of capacities, to increase commu nity awareness about food allergies.
38 WNY Family November 2022
THE KIDDIE GOUR ME T
— by Barbara Blackburn
The Hideaway Grille does make space for kids, offering a selection of meals and suitable seating. We counted a half dozen high chairs and maybe a booster. The price is $7.95 or $8.95 for Kids’ Ribs, partnered by fries and a drink. Bring your own fun or just enjoy the flavors of this North Tonawanda spot on Division Street. Choices are Grilled Cheese, Chicken Wings (5), Pizza Logs (3), Penne with Sauce, Hamburg er, or Cheeseburger.
Hideaway Grille 399 Division Street North Tonawanda 14120 716-694-2710 HideAwayGrille.com
SPOONS ~ FOOD
garlic, and basil, topped with Romano cheese. I could have added chicken, but it soared to heights of yumminess alone.
Before that, if I may mention, I enjoyed a cocktail called a Basil Hayden. This was a flavorful combination of Bourbon, maple syrup, and fresh egg white, and aromatic bitters layered over a large ice cube.
When I saw the babies in the NICU for the first time, wires and tubes were attached to their tiny bodies and they looked fragile and helpless. I was over come with emotions. They were so small, so beautiful, so amazing. I looked into each tiny face and my heart melted. I was in love and I knew I was meant to be their mom even if it wasn’t average or simple. The NICU days were long and difficult but eventually my babies came home one by one.
Dad decided to go Buf falo and enjoy the famous fowl flavor in the Buffalo Chicken Finger Salad ($13.00) of mixed greens, tossed with tomatoes, cheese, and crisp chicken nug gets. Also present were red onions, shredded cheese, and black olives, all topped with wing sauce (mild, medi um, hot, or BBQ.). His bowl was large, like mine, and half of the contents went home. Some rolls or crackers might have been nice to break the monotony after a while. This was a special that day.
While we enjoyed the tastes, we ad mired the appropriate pictures decorating the walls. We faced a section of artistic martini pictures. We noted the different rooms, with one accommodating a party in progress.
My soup was special: cream of mushroom (chicken tortellini was also available). This was an excellent bisque, wearing an attractive shade of green, with bits of mushroom and spinach. Hooray! it wasn’t overly salted like so many restau rant soups.
Next came my Pasta Brandel ($l6.00). (Included with the pasta entree was the soup.) This masterful creation was named after the former owner. The luscious lin guine was tossed with olives, tomato,
The best was our last dish: Italian Lemon Cake, of sponge, filled with Mascar pone, sprinkled with confec tioners sugar, nestled next to whipped cream and a straw berry. Alternatives were chocolate des serts, such as Tunnel of Fudge Cake. I am a member of the Chocolate Fan Club but always order the more fruity dessert. We always have some thing chocolate on the dessert list but not always lemon cake.
So, you ask, what fills the menu for future possibili ties. Of the many in triguing items, here are a few that caught my attention. The Hideaway Supermelt ($14.00) delivers grilled cajun chicken breast, provolone cheese, lettuce, toma toes, and frizzled onions served on a toast ed French bread and a side of cajun mayo. Being a fan of sliders, I would order the Salmon Sliders ($16.00) or the Crab Cake Sliders ($18.00), served on brioche buns with shredded lettuce and tomato with a lemon dill aioli. The Hideaway Special is Ed’s famous BBQ ribs ($22.00 or $30.00), brushed with a signature sauce, chargrilled and served with baked beans, cole slaw, and choice of potato,
We enjoyed the tried and true choic es, with some tasty twists that gave them a good, better, and best status.
Check out Barbara Blackburn’s blogs at frontierfare.wordpress.com and culinar rations.wordpress.com.
We started our adventure as a fam ily of eight in mid-October after our last baby was released from the hospital. The day when we welcomed her home was one of the happiest days in this whole experience. My kids all took turns pass ing her around with big smiles on their faces and when we laid the triplets all on the floor next to each other, my older kids excitedly gathered around them, my heart swelled with pride and awe that they were really all mine. They were all home and we could now move forward as a family.
So, what is life like with 3 kids plus triplets? I won’t sugar coat it — it is extremely challenging. There are days when everyone cries including me, when I can’t find time for a shower, when get ting dinner on the table is impossible, and lack of sleep is the norm. However, there are wonderful days as well. There are days when the babies coo and hold hands, when my big kids entertain them and they belly laugh in unison, when time allows extra snuggles, when you get so many toothless grins that your cheeks hurt from smiling back, and when they look at you with that look, the one that says you are their whole world.
Yes, days are long and difficult but weeks, months, and years fly by. The key is to enjoy the great moments because they are so worth the rough ones.
One year later we are a not so aver age family with six kids ages 9, 7, and 3 plus 5-month-old triplets. Our life may not be average and it certainly is not sim ple but it is full of blessings and joy.
This article was originally published in the April 2015 issue of KC Parent Maga zine. Today, as a mom of six, Sarah Lyons is still writing about family life and her work has appeared in over 150 parenting publications.
November 2022 WNY Family 39
4.5/5 SERVICE 4/5 FAMILY
3 TO 6 continued...