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  Santa Cruz Parent Santa Cruz, CA

January 10, 2013

Ag History
Discover the fascinating, local agricultural history

Top 5 Reasons to Visit the Wetlands of Watsonville

Be a Better Parent and Create a Happier Less-stressful Home
Triple P

This Week
Free Puppet Play: The Tomten
Financial Resolutions for the New Year
Click to view our Business Directory
 

(Graphics) TomtenRound.jpgLittle imaginary creatures --brownies, fairies,leprechauns, tomtens-- all capture children's imaginations.  The best of these stories are inspiring and a classic is the Swedish Tomten series.  An imaginative Tomten puppet show is on for Saturday.  It's a must for all Tomten fans. For the older children, a trip to the Fungus Fair is a treat.

One of our local treasures, the Agricultural History Project, is reaching out to  you, parents, educators, grandparents, et.al. to find out what kinds of activities would draw you to their museum of agricultural history of our county.  Click on their ad to answer their survey questions.  You could become the lucky winner of $100 just for helping with a few answers!  If you've never been there with the children, go!

Back east where private schools have a long tradition, parents often register children for schools when they are born.  Here on the Central Coast, our approach is a little less competitive, however many schools offer small classes, which we know is a plus for the children, so it's wise to visit now if you are seriously interested.  Private schools hold open houses in November and January-March, so now is a very good time to schedule some visits to learn about your options.  Admissions directors like it when you ask lots of questions, so ask away!  Their goals are to find good fits between the school mission and your child's needs. Keep a lookout on our School Corner in this newsletter.  Also go here for a directory of private schools.

Have a great weekend, Parmalee

  Ag History

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  Discover the fascinating, local agricultural history

(Graphics) AgHistory_day-on-farm-.jpgDiscover the fascinating agricultural history of Santa Cruz County, Pajaro Valley and Watsonville

When you visit, be sure to stop by our charming gift shop "Country Corner!" We are located at the entrance to Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds in Watsonville, California. As you discover the rich agriculture history of Santa Cruz, Monterey and Pajaro Valley, you will learn about the crops, people, artifacts and farming practices that have made the Central Coast of California what it is today.

Over 80 crops are grown in this area as a result of unique combination of soils and climates. From potatoes and wheat to lettuce and strawberries, the Central Coast has supplied the world's tables for over 150 years!

Educational Activities for Kids!

A visit to AHP is a wonderful family activity; there is something for everyone. Your children will be engaged as they explore the tools, plows, tractors, implements, antique train, milk bottles and fruit jars of yesterday's farming life.

Admission is free, but visitors are asked to help support the work of the Agriculture History Project (AHP) with a donation of $2 per person.

We welcome school tours and researchers to our agricultural archives, and we always looking for great volunteers with a love of history!

 

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  Top 5 Reasons to Visit the Wetlands of Watsonville

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  • Great spot for birding with over 200 species of birds.
  • One of the LARGEST remaining freshwater wetlands in the Central Coast of California.
  • Over six miles of walking, biking, and jogging trails for the whole family with 29 easily accessible trail entrances.
  • Diverse wildlife to discover. Including muskrats, bobcats and tree frogs.
  • Free Guided Nature Walks offered through the City Nature Center located in the back of Ramsay Park at 30 Harkins Slough Rd.

Wetlands of Watsonville trail map brochures available at the City Nature Center, City Hall, the Watsonville Library and online

 

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  Be a Better Parent and Create a Happier Less-stressful Home

by Susan True, Executive Director of First 5 Santa Cruz County

There are numerous New Year's resolutions many of us consider-spend less money, get more exercise, stop procrastinating, be more patient, eat healthier foods. Another is to be a better parent and create a happier, less-stressful home.

Whether you make New Year's resolutions or not, the start of the new year is a great time to think about your family and the job of parenting. That's why January has been officially designated as Positive Parenting Awareness Month in Santa Cruz County.

With the holidays behind us, how are you feeling about parenting challenges? Do you wish for a more harmonious family life? Are there specific areas of parenting you have questions about or would like to improve? Are you the parent or caregiver you want to be?

Given that parenting is the most important job any of us will ever have, you would think the job would come with at least an instruction manual. In the workplace we are often presented with guidebooks, classes, professional development and more. In the world of parenting, however, it's mostly on-the-job training.

While parental instinct, trial-and-error and advice from friends and family light the way most of the time, sometimes there is a need for more support. In Santa Cruz County, there are several parenting programs available to help. One such resource is the Triple P - Positive Parenting Program, offered by many local organizations and individuals thanks to a partnership between First 5 Santa Cruz County and Santa Cruz County's Health Services Agency and Human Services Department. The countywide program is low- or no-cost and available in English and Spanish to every parent, grandparent or caregiver.

Based on 30 years of research and development, Triple P is a positive parenting approach that benefits all kids, from infants to teens. Triple P provides families with tools to build warm, nurturing relationships with their children, develop good communication, encourage positive behaviors and handle challenging behaviors.

Triple P's parenting strategies are simple and practical-such as spending quality time together, providing positive attention, giving calm and clear instructions-yet they are scientifically-proven to build confidence and skills in both child and parent, which can lead to a happier and healthier family life.

The academic thinking, scientific research and results of Triple P and other positive parenting programs are critically important. However, for busy parents it's just as important to understand exactly how positive parenting can impact daily life at home.

It's all about applying positive parenting to everyday situations and challenges-tantrums, shopping, homework, bullying, mealtime, bedtime and more-and creating opportunities to help children learn, while motivating them to do their best.

First 5 Santa Cruz County and its partners published the Triple P Pocket Guide for Parents, which includes tips for handling common parenting situations. Families also have a range of options for accessing Triple P support-from tips and tools, to classes and workshops to private consultations. The idea is to make small changes that make a big difference-all of which contribute to a happier and less stressful home life. 

Whether you're working to implement your New Year's resolutions or simply working to manage a busy start to 2013, Positive Parenting Awareness Month presents a great opportunity to make one small change that can make a big difference in the health and well-being of your family.

For more information about Triple P, visit triplep.first5scc.org, www.facebook.com/triplepscc or www.youtube.com/triplepsantacruzco. To get a copy of the Triple P Pocket Guide for Parents or find a Triple P class or practitioner, contact Stephanie Bluford at 831-465-2217 or sbluford@first5scc.org

The Triple P - Positive Parenting Program is made available locally by First 5 Santa Cruz County. Triple P is scientifically proven and is the world's leading positive parenting program. Triple P offers classes and one-on-one meetings to help parents handle everyday parenting challenges.

  Triple P

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Listen: 12 Secrets to Safe, Happy and Confident Kids in the 21st Century!

  This Week

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Submit your event!


Check the Events Calendar for More Events!

 

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School Corner

Spring Hill K-8, Family Math Night 1/12

 

Chartwell School K-12, Helping Children Deal with LD Issues 1/12

 

Waldorf School K-8, Kindergarten Open House 1/12

 

Chartwell School K-8, Open House 1/15

 

Mount Madonna Pre-12, Campus Tour Day 1/16

 

Waldorf School K-8, A Walk through the Grades 1/16

 

Coastal Community Preschool, Kindergarten Readiness Forum 1/22


Santa Cruz Montessori Pre-8, Open House 1/26

 

Gateway School K-8, Saturday Open House 1/26

 

Waldorf School K-8, Outdoor Class for Parent and Child (0-3) starts 1/30


Aptos Academy Pre-8, Open house Science Night 1/31

(Ads 2013) CampusKids_BostwickJan2013.jpg

(Photos General) SukiRedHead_138.jpgSuki: How We Read Now

It's amazing how many choices we have these days. My mother had the attitude that it was good for kids to be bored sometimes. When my kids say they're bored, however, I just answer, "You have GOT to be kidding." With this much to read? Who could ever run out of things to do? MORE!>>>

Science Fun with Christine

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What makes an emerald different from a ruby different from a diamond? Just colors? What makes the colors? 

THE ANSWER >>>>>

Thinking about Preschool in January?

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Visit a few right here!

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 Free Puppet Play: The Tomten

Free Puppet Play: The Tomten
Beautiful puppet play for all ages!
01/12/2013 from 1:00pm to 2:00pm
Location: Aptos Yoga Center, 783 Rio Del Mar Blvd, Ste 23B, Aptos Map

(Books/Products) TomtenandFox.jpgChildren of all ages will be transported by a delightful Scandinavian tale about a kindly old troll who guards a farm in the forest by night, caring for the animals while the humans sleep. Kathleen Avalon will present the play using beautiful felted wool puppets she creates. Avalon, whose specialty is puppetry arts, is the director of the Magic Garden Preschool & Homeschool.

 

The show is part of the third anniversary celebration of the Aptos Yoga Center, now a non-profit, and the only Svaroopa® yoga center on the Central Coast.

 

To reserve your space please call 688-1019.

Fresh Starts!
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Pancake Breakfast!
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  Pancake Breakfast!
Senior Citizen's Opportunities
Date: The 2nd Su of every month from 8:30am to 12:00pm
Ages: All
Details: Come enjoy our wonderful monthly breakfast! The cooks, wait-staff
City: Santa Cruz Phone: (831) 423-6640 view all details >>
     
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Guided Elephant Seal Walks Start Dec 15
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  Guided Elephant Seal Walks Start Dec 15
State Park Ano Nuevo
Date: Every day (Oct 25-Mar 31)
Ages: All: (Lots of walking)
Details: 3 mile hike over sand and sloping terrain to see thousands of elephant seals, including newborn pups, their mothers, and bulls
Special Instructions: Dec 15 - Mar 31
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  Financial Resolutions for the New Year

Financial Resolutions for the New Year
Make 2013 the year you get your financial life in order. Reduce stress and make noticeable progress by following these steps.
 

  • Document your financial goals with the entire family. Including everyone in the goal setting process makes it more likely that you will have cooperation towards reaching your goals.  Planning a Disney cruise?  Let your kids know it is on the list and you are saving for it.  It also gives you something to use when they are begging for a toy they don't need.  "We could buy this or we could put it in our Disney fund."  
  • Update your balance sheet. Reviewing your current investments and debts each year is a great way to stay on top of everything. It makes it harder to forget about that small 401(k) you left at your old job or to ignore the GAP credit card balance that doesn't seem to be going away.  Include your life insurance policies in the inventory to make sure you have them accounted for and start identifying room for improvement. Make sure you are prepared for emergencies or any big upcoming purchases such as a new car that can actually fit two car seats comfortably.  
  • Update your spending plan for the New Year.What worked last year?  What didn't?  Review your previous year's spending and agree on where you can make adjustments.  Try increasing your savings by a small amount and increasing the payments you are making towards paying down debt.  Even an extra $1,000 / year ($83 / month) will make a difference.
  • Review all of your insurance policies in detail with your provider or broker.Our lives are always changing and things we don't think are a big deal could require a change to your policies.  Did you start employing a housekeeper?  Inherit some jewelry?  Your provider can usually provide a checklist for you to complete so they can see if any changes need to be made.  
  • Make sure your Estate Planning Documents are up to date.  Review your current estate planning documents to see if there need to be any updates.  If you don't have any estate planning documents yet, meet with an Estate Planning attorney to start the process. Everyone needs some level of estate planning, even if it is just a few basic documents. Don't think that just because you don't have children this doesn't apply to you.
  • Review your credit report.  Review your credit report at least once a year to spot any bogus charges.  This is a great way to spot identify theft as well as to make sure that you are not left unaware of any bills listed as outstanding.  Medical bills are notorious for popping up unexpectedly.  See NYTimes article

Be thankful for what you accomplished in 2012 and get motivated to make financial progress this coming year.   If you feel overwhelmed and it is keeping you from getting started, meet with a financial planner who can help you develop a plan that you can be excited about.  

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