Lane County MOM | October / November 2021

Page 1

real local moms

since 2005

Lane County | October / November 2021







LARGE PRIZE WALL FOR A JOB WELL DONE! • 15 years experience in

the dental field

• birth to 16 years old • accepting all insurances • offering sedation dentistry • awesome monthly

prize drawings

• all new state-of-the-art

dental equipment

• lobby treehouse

with slide

• coffee bar •

fun, fun, fun

Dr. Erin Estep

Treehouse Kids Dentist provides the highest quality pediatric dentistry in an incredibly warm, friendly, and fun environment. We are committed to giving you and your child the very best care in a welcoming and playful manner.

1611 J Street Springfield, OR • 541-515-6631 • 2

It’s what‘s

Interview Your Kids


inside that counts

Pumpkin Everything

Family Meeting 28


Meet the MOM experts ... 4

Vacation MOM.................18

Pumpkin Everything......23

They know what they’re

Great news for travelers in the

Beyond the pumpkin

talking about.

Willamette Valley

spice latte

Because I said so............... 5

Interview Your Kids........20

Family Meeting................28

A message from MOM

They really do say the

How (and why) to hold a

darndest things.

family meeting.

Cover MOM: Shannon Malin-Pimm....10 This mom gets real


More ways to love your MOM lovemommag We love hearing from you. Email us with feedback, story ideas or nominations.

Cover MOM


Photos by Fremouw Photography

CONGRATULATIONS to the Eugene Family YMCA, winner of the 2021 MOM Magazine Community Impact Award. For more information about the Eugene Family YMCA, see their ad on page 27.

Advertise today Want to get the word out about your business? Contact Linda Blair at 3

meet the


[They know what they’re talking about]

Vacation MOM

Beyond the Bin


with Kelly Bell, waste reduction specialist, page 8

with Dr. Erin Estep, pediatric dentist, page 30

with Donnita Bassinger, travel agent, page 18

The best thing to

spend on your children is your time. with Dr. David Hackett, pediatric optometrist, page 9

Focus on MOM

— Louise Hart, Ed.D

Healthy MOM with Annie Ziemba, MSN, CNM, page 6

Say Cheese with Dr. Brad Chvatal, orthodontist, page 22



Because I said so! Published by GO Creative, LLC 263 29th Avenue SW Albany, OR 97322 Editor-in-Chief Managing Director Audrey Meier DeKam Mid-Valley & Lane County Business Development Manager Linda Blair 541-231-7250 Salem Advertising Representative Kim Leighty 503-510-9036 Designer Sean Carver

MOM Magazine is sustainably delivered throughout the community thanks to MOM MagazineTM is produced by GO Creative, LLC. © 2021 All rights reserved. Any reproduction, in whole or part, without written permission of the publisher, is prohibited. Information in the magazine is provided for general information purposes only with the understanding that none of the content constitutes professional advice. Opinions expressed by the writers or advertisers are not necessarily the opinions of the magazine or the publisher. Inclusion in the magazine does not constitute endorsement of information, products or services.

How candy and time both slide by Last year I was determined to make trick-or-treating safe for social distancing and to give out full-size candy bars. I’m happy to report I was able to do both, with a nifty candy slide built by my husband out of a large PVC pipe. Combined with our unique front entrance, it worked perfectly. The trick-or-treaters were delighted, which was the goal. Looking back to last year at this time, it was still filled with so much uncertainty: most schools were in distance learning, vaccines weren’t yet available, and Oregonians had just gone through devastating wildfires. We’ve processed so many changes in one year, some for the better and others not. It got me thinking big thoughts about the passage of time. Last year neither one of my kids wanted to dress up for Halloween or go trick-or-treating, claiming they had outgrown it. I wasn’t ready for that. With children, you get an accelerated version of years going by, and while some of it you’re glad to have in your rearview (the drudgery), there are parts that catapult you forward with such force it makes you gasp. Whether you’re ready for it or not, your baby outgrows those 0-3 month clothes, wants to pour their own milk in the cereal bowl, to ride their bike around the block without time marches forward can certainly make a mom wistful.


major events, it will change us permanently — and hopefully for the better. I think of my candy slide: it was made out of necessity, but will now become a holiday staple. And in those moments when my kids mature faster than I want them to, I remind myself what a wonderful privilege it is to watch them grow. Audrey Meier DeKam Editor-in-Chief

This Halloween, I’ve resigned myself to dressing up again with my dog, who is my most willing partner when it comes to themed costumes. And while this season may not be quite the way we all wanted, i.e., normal as defined by pre-pandemic times, there’s no going backwards. Like many 5

healthy MOM

What is birth with a midwife like? For starters, midwives offer support and individualized care. We spend a lot of focused, dedicated time with our patients, and we stay by their side and talk through everything that happens in labor. The quality of care makes a positive difference in outcomes: birth with a midwife decreases your risk of interventions, complications and surgical birth, regardless of how you labor.

How do midwives help with labor pain? Some people choose midwife care because they plan not to use pain medication in birth and know we are experts in coping strategies. Nurse midwives are skilled in nonpharmacologic techniques like visualizations, massage and hydrotherapy. We teach positions and exercises that can help ease labor pain. We also provide nitrous oxide, IV medications and epidural pain relief. For patients with an epidural, we still use positions and techniques to help labor progress.

We offer waterbirth and nitrous oxide which are great options for eligible patients, as well as epidural pain relief.

What about postpartum care?

The birth experience with a midwife When you’re pregnant, you’re faced with all kinds of options and decisions to make about how you want to labor. One of the biggest decisions to make is who you choose to provide health care for you and your baby.

Annie Ziemba, MSN, CNM McKenzie Midwives & Lactation Services 960 N. 16th St., Ste 104, Springfield (541) 744-8660


We provide more than your typical postpartum care. Our lactation services are available to the entire community, regardless of whether you have your baby with us. We offer frequent and same-day lactation visits. We often see families for several weeks for ongoing lactation support. Our postpartum visits are designed to assess not just physical but also emotional well-being. We cherish the opportunity to care for people in the early days of parenthood. And we provide health care far beyond labor and delivery, too, long into menopause and beyond.

Brought to you by:


Momism #15: Eat your vegetables.


Eugene Montessori School Educating for a better world since 1962. A quality Montessori education for children 3 through kindergarten. The individualized curriculum includes music and P.E., snacks and a wholesome hot lunch.

Call for a tour! Eugene Montessori School 2255 Oakmont Way 541.345.7124 7


Households are the biggest source of food waste in Lane County. True: Households are the largest contributors to food waste in Lane County, followed by consumer-facing businesses like restaurants and grocery stores. It’s tough to hear, but that bag of salad you bought with good intentions now rotting in your crisper has consequences: 25% of our fresh water grows food that will never be eaten. That’s a sobering number in our current drought. But there’s good news: by making small changes, we can all solve the problem of food waste with simple tips... • Shop for meals — Make a list with meals in mind and only get what you’ll use. • Prep now, eat later — Prepare ingredients in advance to save time, effort and money. Try cooking several meals at once and freezing the rest for a later date. If you notice something going bad, make a soup or freeze individual ingredients.

Brought to you by:

• Keep it fresh — Store fruits and vegetables where they will last the longest. Kelly Bell is the Master Recycler coordinator for the Lane County Waste Management Division. She feels privileged to support the many citizen waste prevention educators who volunteer their time. Learn more at

Non-surgical scoliosis intervention Call us for a free phone consultation

scoliosis studio LL (503) 926-3338 Located in Corvallis

• Eat what you buy — Use up leftovers and ingredients on hand before you buy more. Create an “eat this first” section in your fridge. The bonus of decreasing food waste is that it saves you money in the long-run. That’s a win-win for everyone. Source:

If you or your child has been diagnosed with scoliosis, there is help. Scoliosis Studio offers non-surgical, Schroth Method physical therapy to improve symmetry, posture and pain-relief. The most important time for intervention — when scoliosis is shown to progress — is adolescence. We also help women during pregnancy and menopause, as well as men and women with age-related degeneration.

Bailey Denno, PT, DPT Doctor of Physical Therapy Schroth-BSPTS C2 Certified Scoliosis Practitioner

Scoliosis Studio is a direct pay PT clinic, we do not bill insurance.

I am a specialized physical therapist certified in and focused on the treatment of people of all ages with scoliosis, hyperkyphosis and hyperlordosis. I also treat people both before and after surgery.


Sports vision training: an edge for athletes

Athletes need to make splitsecond decisions, have quick responses, and see the game better than their opponent. This is where sport vision training can be useful, for help with:

Dynamic visual acuity: seeing moving targets clearly

Eye tracking and focusing: moving the eyes precisely, clearing the target

Peripheral awareness: field awareness, capturing the scene without looking directly at each detail

Eye-hand coordination: (or eye-foot coordination) matching our body to the game, and the world around us

Eye teaming: right and left eyes performing equally and together Anticipation timing: using vision to decide how and when to enact our muscles

Brought to you by: David A. Hackett, OD, FCOVD Lifetime Eye Care a division of Sterling Vision 4765 Village Plaza Loop Eugene, Oregon (541) 342-3100 or 866-4EYELUV

Visual attention: process what is important and tune out the rest Depth perception: understanding exactly where the ball is in 3-D space

Visual reaction time: the time between seeing and deciding what action to take To learn more, visit the International Sports Vision Association’s website at Be sure your athlete has a comprehensive eye exam. Note that contact lenses are preferred for athletes and can be fit at any age, typically starting around age 12.

Offering more than pregnancy care As midwives, we offer a wide range of services, including: • Well women care • Contraception • Lactation services • Menopausal management • Gynecologic care OFFERING MORE THAN PREGNANCY CARE—CONTRACEPTION, WELL WOMEN CARE, MENOPAUSAL MANAGEMENT, LACTATION SERVICES AND GYNECOLOGICAL PROBLEM VISITS.







Shannon Malin-Pimm This cover MOM encourages her daughters to express themselves and always keep going with a smile — because a smile will always keep people guessing. Photos by Fremouw Photography

Profession: Orthodontic Treatment Coordinator Community: Lane County Partner: Independently contracted. I am my own partner in crime. Children: Rachel Anne, age 25; Teamara Jo, age 14; and Eva Lou, age 13 11

QA MOMs Love Local We love locally owned businesses, restaurants, places and organizations. Share your favorite… …shop to pick up a gift for friend: Hirons Pharmacy …coffee spot: Allan’s Coffee …view or scenic lookout: Mt. Baldy …place to treat yourself to a mani/pedi: French Nails & Spa at Oakway Center …restaurants for a date night: Date night? What’s that? …take-out, food truck or quick bite: Beergarden …meetup spot for happy hour: SideBar …event in your community: concerts at the Cuthbert Amphitheater …any other local places you love: The Potters’ Quarter, Board & Brush, Strike City Lanes, Prince Puckler’s, Shoe-a-holic


Family comes first. Every family has their own traditions, rituals or inside jokes. What’s one of yours? Our family has many inside jokes, but the one that takes the cake is the infamous Mr. Horse. This horse toy was a gift for my middle daughter’s birthday when she was about six. It has its beady black eyes that follow you when you move, and it makes noises when you push its buttons. And it has buttons everywhere — it doesn’t matter where you touch the darn thing, it goes off with a clippity-clop or weird high-pitched whinnies. It creeps me out, and my kids know it. From the moment that horse came into my house, it has been hidden under my bed with just its head sticking out, placed in my shower, hidden behind clothes in my closet, sitting in the back seat of my truck…and every time, and I mean every time my kids “surprise” me with Mr. Horse, I scream. I usually jump, too. My three girls will get together to scheme and plot while I’m at work, moving the horse throughout the house so when I come home, I am “surprised.”

Tell us about one of your proudest mom moments. One of my proudest mom moments was when my oldest daughter, Rachel, responded to a business partner while I had her at work with me. He said, “Rachel, you look and act just like your mom.” Without pause, she looked at him and said with a huge smile, “Thank you! I do, don’t I?” The businessman took a moment, then walked over and shook my hand. He said, “You’re a good mom. Do you know how I know that? You just don’t hear that come out of kids’ mouths that much anymore.” In what way are your children like you? How are they different? When I was little, I had a smart mouth. My friends and family reading this will laugh and say, “had?” I was rambunctious, creative and a loner with a quick wit. When I would smart off to my mom, she would laugh and say, “I hope you have a child just like you.” Well, I had three — and I couldn’t be prouder. My girls, just like their mama, are not afraid to express themselves, especially through hair color and make-up. Some of us are more daring than others, but one thing is for sure: we like to be uniquely 13


You know you’re a mom when you hear yourself say, “______________.” “Turn off the lights! We do not own stock in EWEB.” Every time I say that I hear it in my dad’s voice.

No one works harder than mom. Tell us about your work or volunteerism outside of the home. I love my job. I found the holy grail of careers with the best employer and team ever, working as a treatment coordinator for Chvatal Orthodontics. It’s been exciting, challenging and rewarding, and I get to make people laugh and smile all day while helping patients regain their confidence or live life pain-free. I’ve never experienced the kind of teamwork, sincere caring and authentic fun that we have every day.

If mom’s not happy, nobody’s happy. When was the last time you did something for the first time? In August of this year, my kiddos and I got to take our very first girls’ family vacation. We went to Great Wolf Lodge for the very first time as well. Which good habit do you wish you started earlier? Eating right and regular exercise along with putting money into my 401k plan a little sooner. When did you realize you were no longer a child? The day after high school graduation the reality of, “Oh no, now what do I do?” set in. Our Sheldon Irish Senior class of 1991 did our all-night party cruising around the Columbia Gorge in Portland on the Sternwheeler. We had casino night, took busses to Portland and had pizza on the way. It was a blast, and I came home early the next day and slept until 2 p.m. When I woke up, I felt lost. I walked over to the high school football field and just looked on in silence, wondering what in the world I was going to do now. I was scared, clueless and felt like I was the only person on the planet. I had no idea what I wanted to do or who I wanted to become. One thing is for sure, I never dreamed I

would get to live a life so full of adventure and thrills alongside some good people. What are three words your best friend would use to describe you? I have three individuals I would call my closest friends. When I asked each of them, two had identical answers: vivacious, beautiful and funny. My third friend said, “Three words could never be enough to describe you.” I think that friend just moved into pole position. What is the quality you like most about yourself? I like to make people laugh. It makes me feel good to make others feel good. What’s your superpower? A really big heart. If you could turn any activity into an Olympic sport, in which event would you win a gold medal? Positive thinking. I believe there is purpose in all things and all events, good and bad. If we’re lucky, sometimes we get to see the purpose behind the pain. Tell us something about you that would surprise your kids. It is hard to say what would surprise my kids because I’m an open book. The one thing I think they would be most surprised by is that I would tell MOM magazine that I trim my nose hairs and wear spanx to keep my spare tire from showing. Yup. Hair and gravity are not your friends as you grow older. What keeps you up at night (apart from kids, of course)? Strange noises the house makes and the woodpecker that loves my chimney. What’s your guilty pleasure? Chips, salsa and a whole lot of guacamole, paired with a margarita on the rocks, no salt. What is your greatest extravagance? Hair and nails, but hair first always. I have always been known for my hair. The cut and color, good or bad. In high school I held the honor of being voted “biggest hair” as well as the one who would always say, “Don’t touch my hair.” For Christmas in 1989, I asked my dad for Aqua Net Extra Hold hair spray for my stocking. Instead, he got me a case of it under the tree. Who is your favorite real-life hero? My daddy. I am absolutely a daddy’s girl. He taught me that I can achieve anything if I work hard, never quit and always have faith. I watched my dad go through many difficult situations in life, and he never wavered, never quit. He never lost faith and always had a great sense of humor

about it. He also instilled a love and passion in me for classic cars. I even owned a street rod shop where my dad and I got to live our dream of working together in a business with hot rods. They say that everyone has a book in them. What’s the title of your book? Everyone Wants to Change The World. Nobody Wants To Change the Toilet Paper Roll.

Listen to mom. Who and what has influenced the mother you are today? My mom inspired me to be the mom I am today. She’s creative, funny and always has a smile on her face. I’m pretty sure she’s the originator of the “dad” joke phenomenon. The one joke I remember her saying most is whenever I would be having a bad day, she would say, “Cheer up. It could be worse. You could be related to me. Oh no! It is worse!” Then she would laugh, and I would smile because she was right.


fun. My girls are also artistic and creative. Teamara loves to draw and paint, Eva is my innovator and fashion expert, and Rachel is my soon to be music teacher and band geek.

MOM s Favorite... …family game: Gin rummy, UNO …place to hide and find some peace & quiet: The bathroom for sure. The door has a lock! I call it spa day and it happens every Saturday morning. …binge-worthy TV or podcast: Bones, How I met Your Mother …way to get out of making dinner: Bring home McDonald’s …inspirational quote: “Whether you think you can or can’t, you’re right.” …time-saving app or digital tool: Mute button 15

How would you describe your parenting philosophy? Honestly, I wish I had some book or quote I could write down that would make me sound like “Wow! That mom has her stuff together!” but I don’t. I wing it. I reach out to other parents for help and advice, and I keep what works and change what doesn’t. I instill independence, creativity and self-confidence by allowing my kiddos certain freedom of choices such as hair style and color, along with fashion fun. I also let go of things I cannot control. Well, I try to. What message would you like to share with other moms? Remember to tell it like it is. Parenthood is hard. It’s even harder when you go it alone. My dad always told me to be cautious in how I respond to life’s situations because you never know who is watching. And someone is always watching, especially your kids. Sometimes, I used to feel that people were watching


to see me fail because everyone gawks at a train-wreck. People take note of how well you juggle work, doctors’ appointments, pilates, weddings, funerals, grocery shopping, laundry, oil changes for the car, parent-teacher conferences, mowing the yard, paying bills, cooking meals and surviving a pandemic, all while staying positive. I can do it because I have the support of so many individuals who help me when it matters most: my employer, coworkers, neighbors, friends, landlord, networking groups, family, as well as my children, their friends, the schools, and sometimes even complete strangers. All these people and so many more encourage and inspire me to be my best. To have faith in the journey and just keep going with a smile. Why a smile? Because a smile will always keep people guessing.


Momism #172: Don’t forget your mask!


Let Vacation MOM Plan Your Dream Vacation! Family Vacations Romantic Getaways Cruises All Inclusive Resorts Disney Vacations

expand your reach with print 541.926.3000

magazines • inserts • newspapers postcards • catalogs • maps • calendars

Donnita Bassinger VIP Vacations, Inc. 541-913-5272 Facebook: Vacation MOM 17

Great news for travelers in the Willamette Valley BY DONNITA BASSINGER


The Eugene Airport now offers more airlines and flights than ever before. In addition to Alaska Airlines, Allegiant, American Airlines, Delta and United, the airport recently welcomed Avelo Airlines and Southwest. Chicago

Salt Lake City Denver

Oakland San Francisco

Las Vegas Palm Springs

San Diego Santa Ana Los Angeles Burbank


Phoenix – Mesa Phoenix

Dallas – Fort Worth

Each airline serving the Eugene Airport offers something unique: ALASKA AIRLINES

Alaska Airlines offers non-stop flights to Seattle and Los Angeles with connections to destinations across the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Costa Rica. This airline is proudly based in the Northwest, and it offers the most flights from the Eugene Airport. ALLEGIANT

Allegiant began in 1997 and offers low fares on non-stop, all-jet service. From Eugene, you can fly to Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Mesa (near Phoenix) and Oakland. New flights will be added to Santa Ana (Orange County) and Palm Springs. Flights usually operate two or three times per week to each destination.

Booking and flight information for Allegiant, Avelo and Southwest can only be found on their official websites, so visit them directly.

throughout the U.S., including Hawaii! Southwest sets themselves apart by offering free checked and carry-on, as well as no change fees for any of their fares. UNITED

United Airlines was the first airline to serve the Eugene Airport in 1944. Today they operate daily non-stop flights to Denver, San Francisco and Los Angeles. From Eugene you can connect to 238 destinations in the United States and 118 international airports.


American Airlines flies daily non-stop flights from Eugene to Phoenix and Dallas/Fort Worth airports. From those cities you can catch connecting flights to 350 destinations around the world. American Airlines is the largest airline in the world.

There are free water bottle filling stations located past security screening so you can bring empty water bottles and do your part to protect our environment. PARKING

One of the many advantages to using the Eugene Airport is the convenient parking lot located only steps away from the entrance. Long-term parking is $16 per day, and a bit further across the road is economy parking for $10 per day. LACTATION SUITES

Nursing moms will be happy to know that there are two lactation suites available. These private areas offer comfortable seating and charging stations, located near the top of the escalators. AIRPORT NAVIGATORS

The Eugene Airport Navigators are volunteers who can be found at the information booth and roaming the terminal, ready to provide flight information, driving directions and tourism information. GET FLYING

Now that you know how easy it is to fly from Eugene, it’s time to start traveling. Contact a travel agent to plan a vacation today!


Avelo Airlines began this spring as the first new airline in the U.S. in nearly 15 years. They fly four days per week non-stop to the Hollywood Burbank airport, using Boeing 737 aircraft with 189 seats. This new flight offers low fares and easy access to the attractions of Southern California. DELTA

Delta can fly you to almost 300 destinations in 50 countries, starting from Eugene. They offer daily non-stop flights to Seattle and Salt Lake City, where you can connect to flights anywhere you want to go. SOUTHWEST

The arrival of Southwest to the Eugene Airport in August was cause for celebration. The low-cost airline will offer daily non-stop flights to Las Vegas and Oakland with plans to add additional routes in the future. From Eugene you can connect to destinations

More reasons to love the Eugene Airport RESTAURANTS & GIFT SHOPS

The Willamette Grill is available for visitors and pre-security passengers. This full-service restaurant and bar is open daily from early morning until the evening. In the A-Gate area (upstairs) you will find the Coast to Cascades Café offering sandwiches, gourmet coffee, snacks and a newly remodeled bar. If you are looking for souvenirs from Oregon, reading materials, unique gifts or snacks, they can be found at two locations within the airport. Locally owned Emerald City News and Gifts is located in the terminal lobby (before security screening) and upstairs in the A-Gate area.

Brought to you by:



Donnita Bassinger is a busy mom of three who lives in Eugene and is active in many local charities. She has been a travel agent in Oregon for 30 years and witnessed many changes to the Eugene Airport. As the owner of VIP Vacations, she is happy to chat with you about your travel plans. Contact Donnita at 541-913-5272 or on @VacationMOMpage 19

Ages 6 – 8 What made you laugh today?


Your Kids THEY REALLY DO SAY THE DARNDEST THINGS. A fun way to get to know your children better is to interview them. Take video, record it or write it down because you’ll want to remember it.

Ages 3 – 5 What is your favorite game or toy right now?

Tell me something that makes you really happy or mad.

What is your most favorite food?

If you could be a bug, what kind of bug would you be and why?


Describe what kind of work your parents do.

What’s the grossest thing you’ve ever seen?

If you were a chef at a restaurant, what would you make?

Ages 9 – 10 What part of being a grownup are you most looking forward to? And the least?

What’s your favorite number and color?

What makes a person a good friend?

What is something grownups should know about kids your age?

Ages 14+ What’s your favorite thing to do with your friends?

What excites you about becoming an adult?

Which social platform is better and why: Tik Tok, YouTube, Snapchat or…?

If we could take a trip anywhere in the world right now, where would you want to go and why?

Ages 11 – 13 If you could teach a class at school, what would it be about? What would you like to change about the world?

Before sleeping each night, what do you tend to think about?

What is something you think grownups need to start or stop doing?

What is your favorite thing about yourself? 21

Say Cheese

Back to school with braces NOW ALSO AT 2215 WILLAMETTE STREET!

With school back in session, here are a few things to help make your braces experience safe and healthy with just a little bit of effort: 1. Eat braces friendly foods. Look for foods that aren’t sticky, hard or chewy. Go for the mashed potatoes instead of the potato chips, and the applesauce instead of the apples.

Brought to you by:

2. Brush your teeth before you go to school. Eating a pop tart on the way out the door is a surefire way to have food caked in your teeth all day which could ruin the perfect selfie. Want extra credit? Keep a toothbrush in your locker and brush after lunch, too.

3. Keep a mirror in your locker to check if you have something stuck in your teeth. Or, use your front facing camera to help keep your smile looking great. 4. Drink water. It not only helps you hydrate, rinsing your mouth with water gets rid of those Oreos bits stuck to your smile. 5. Wear a mouthguard. They’re cool and will keep you safe. Just don’t chew on it like Steph Curry does.

(541) 683-8490 • 1400 Valley River Drive, 240, Eugene 1130 E. Main Street, Cottage Grove 2215 Willamette Street, Ste. B, Eugene

Livia Fremouw - 541.844.9429 Modern, timeless, custom portraits since 2004. Newborn babies, toddlers, children, seniors and families. 22


Pumpkin Everything This iconic fruit (yes, it’s a fruit because of the seeds) is more than a sign of the season.

3. Cut the pumpkin in half. De-seed and de-pulp. Some cooks drizzle olive oil on the innards to keep them from drying out during baking.

MAKE YOUR OWN PUMPKIN PUREE No judgement here on using the canned variety, but if you want super fresh, try making your own pumpkin puree:

4. Put pumpkin halves on a baking sheet and roast at 350 degrees. Plan for 45 minutes to an hour, until you can insert a fork into the pumpkin with ease.

PUMPKIN PUREE DOUBLES AS BABY FOOD! Got a little one ready for pumpkin? This puree doubles as a baby food. Some moms add a dash of cinnamon to it for their little gobblers to enjoy.


1. Look for sugar pumpkins, sometimes called “pie pumpkins” and not the ginormous ones meant for carving.

5. After it has cooled, separate the skin and then use a food processor to puree. For a smoother result, you’ll want to strain it through cheesecloth or a fine-mesh colander.

2. Clean and dry the pumpkin, then cut off the stem.

6. Freeze the puree in one-cup quantities for future use.

PUMPKIN PIE without evaporated milk Forgot that can of evaporated milk? No worries. Regular milk works fine, and we hear canned coconut milk makes for a zippy, dairy-free spin on this seasonal favorite. 1 ¼ cups pumpkin 1 cup brown sugar 3 tablespoons flour 2 eggs 1 cup milk 1 teaspoon cinnamon ½ teaspoon allspice 1 teaspoon vanilla Pinch of salt 1. Mix ingredients into a large bowl, then pour into an uncooked pie shell (for a variation, try a graham cracker crust). 2. Bake for 15 minutes at 375 degrees, then decrease the temperature to 325 degrees and bake for 30 minutes more. If the edges start to brown, cover them with foil. You’ll know it’s done when the center is wobbly, but not liquid, and an inserted knife comes out clean. 3. Let the pie cool on a rack for at least an hour or more before serving.

PUMPKIN SPICE POTPOURRI For a quick and easy way to make your house smell like the best of autumn, bring 1 1/2 cups of water and 2 tablespoons of pumpkin pie spice to a boil in a saucepan, then set it to simmer. If you don’t have pumpkin pie spice, use a blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla, cloves and ginger for a similar result. 25

GRILLED PUMPKIN WITH ARUGULA 5 - 6 thin pumpkin wedges 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 teaspoon kosher salt 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary 2 cups or more of fresh arugula ¼ cup goat cheese, crumbled ¼ pomegranate seeds, dried cranberries or chopped nuts Vinaigrette dressing of your choice 1. In a large bowl, coat the wedges with the olive oil, salt and rosemary until they are evenly covered. 2. Grill the wedges about 5 minutes per side, and cook until they are fork tender. 3. Toss the wedges with fresh arugula, goat cheese and a sprinkle of pomegranate seeds, dried cranberries or chopped nuts. 4. Dress with the vinaigrette.

EASY-PEASY PUMPKIN BREAD This sweet bread is an easy sell for busy school morning breakfasts. Make it ahead of time, and then reheat a slice in the microwave, slather it with butter and call it breakfast.


cups cleaned pumpkin seeds tablespoons olive oil packet of dry ranch seasoning

1. Combine ingredients in a bowl, then spread evenly on a parchment-lined cookie sheet. 2. Bake at 350 degrees, stirring after 10 - 12 minutes. Cook longer if needed to get the seeds toasted.


1 ⅔ cups flour 1 ½ cups sugar ¼ teaspoon baking powder 1 teaspoon baking soda ¾ teaspoon salt ½ teaspoon ground cloves ½ teaspoon cinnamon ½ cup vegetable oil ½ cup water 1 cup pumpkin 2 eggs 1. In a large bowl, mix all the dry ingredients. Add oil, water, pumpkin and eggs and stir to combine. 2. Pour into a greased loaf pan and bake for one hour at 350 degrees. Allow the bread to cool for about 10 minutes before running a knife around the edges and removing it from the pan.


#20: I love you more.

] Healthy sleep, Beautiful smiles, Happy kids

Help your kids focus in school

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How (and why) to hold a

Family Meeting Family meetings provide focused, open space to talk about everything that impacts your household, from practical issues like who keeps throwing away all the forks, to more serious topics such as the health of a family member. Some of the reasons you might hold a family meeting include: •

To share big family news such as moves, changes in health, deployments, job changes

Before any kind of travel, event or holiday

For addressing behaviors and resetting expectations

Before a change in family schedules, dynamics, sitters, etc.

To brainstorm vacations or getaways

For sorting out shared pet care, house and yard duties

To find out more about what can be improved in your family life

Family meetings teach civility, model effective communication, how to work as a group and that compromise is sometimes needed and reached.

Setting it up Give advance notice of the meeting, with topics, so everyone can be thinking it over in the days beforehand. Choose a time after everyone has been fed, napped and isn’t on the go to the next commitment. Keep it informal. Follow a general format you like, such as one from work, place of worship, or volunteer organization. There’s no need for Robert's Rules of Order, but you do want to keep everyone from talking over one another. You could use an object that is passed from one person to the next when it’s their turn to speak (we don’t advise sticks, heavy or other breakable items, because kids).

You could schedule monthly meetings or do them as needed. Oh, and have a rule to put the screens away — including your own — so that everyone is engaged in active listening.

Benefits Family meetings teach civility, model effective communication, how to work as a group and that compromise is sometimes needed and reached. You might be pleasantly surprised to learn what’s on your kids’ minds. You can also draw on what you talked about when needed. For instance, when the kids are impatient because the plane is delayed, you can say, “Remember how we talked about patience during our family meeting? This is when we need to use it because sometimes travel delays just happen.” Family meetings are also spaces for conflict resolution: When the toilet keeps getting clogged with too much TP, it often leads to a chorus of “not me!” Stay focused on finding solutions rather than ferreting out blame: “When the toilet plugs up, it’s a problem for all of us. What can we do to keep it from happening?” Kids have important things to say too, even if it comes out in a jumble. Sure, they may use their talking time to advocate getting a gerbil. Gently remind them about the topic at hand and ask them a specific question to get back on task, such as, “That’s something to talk about at a later time. Right now we’re talking about how we want to spend our winter vacation.” Your kids are smart and perceptive, so they benefit from knowing, rather than hiding information that is part of family life. That said, too many details can be overwhelming and frightening. For a cancer diagnosis, you might say, “My hair will fall out and I’ll look a bit different, but it means the medicine I need is really doing its job.”

Results will be perfectly imperfect When it comes to serious topics, don’t be shocked by outlandish questions or total silence. Some kids may need more time to mentally process what it all means. Do be prepared for oddly timed questions that come up after the fact, like right as you’re trying to cook dinner. One meeting may not cement what was talked about, so be ready to repeat and clarify as necessary. Give a family meeting a try. Your children will surprise you with their insights. 29

something to smile about


Halloween doesn’t have to be all about sugar Like many of you, our Halloween looked a little different last year. I was originally a little sad that my kids weren’t going door-to-door (for good reason) to collect gobs of candy from our neighbors. But in true COVID fashion, we decided to make the best of the situation and have progressive dinner with our two close neighbors. We started at the first house with appetizers, the second house with dinner, and our house had treats/games, all of which were Halloween themed. It turned out to be the best Halloween yet! The progressive dinner was nice because it was a single event, rather than eating candy every day for the next month. To decrease the amount of sugar your kids consume around this holiday, allow the candy to be consumed for one week (or

whatever you decide) and then it’s gone. Many dentists offer a “buy back” where kiddos get money based on the amount of candy they bring in. A lot of these places then donate the candy to the troops or various organizations. You can also choose to hand out alternatives to candy, including stickers, temporary tattoos, Halloween-themed school supplies, glow sticks, sugar-free gum, spider/bat rings, sticky hands (always a hit), bubbles, toothbrushes, hair scrunchies, bouncy balls, and warm drink packets (hot cocoa or apple cider). We all love sugar, and a little in moderation is fine. But maybe this year try something new. You never know, it might be the most memorable Halloween yet.

Brought to you by: Dr. Erin Estep is a board-certified pediatric dentist who owns Treehouse Kids Dentist in Springfield. She and her staff are committed making sure your child LITTLE to TOES has an amazing, safe, memorable dental experience.






10 little toes...


10 big reasons to have your baby at McKenzie-Willamette Medical Center:



• All-in-one labor, delivery & recover rooms (including whirlpool tubs) • Water birth available • State-of-the-art newborn safety system • 24/7 in-house laborists (OB)


• 24/7 on-call certified nurse midwives and lactation services • 24/7 on-call pediatric hospitalists • Level II special care nursery • Maternity Care Coordinator

Visit, maternity services for more information 30

• Childbirth education/classes • Nitrous oxide option during labor




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