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Santa Cruz Parent

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Notice the new newsletter format?  If you do not see a complete newsletter, be sure to click on CLICK TO VIEW NEWSLETTER, at the top of this newsletter.

I gave up tv in the early 1990's with almost no backward glances.  Imagine, that's almost two decades of not missing sitcoms and talking heads.  Over the years I became a radio fan, but at least I can do two things with the radio on.  Mostly I increased my personal reading. I believe that is much better exercize for the brain.  Nowadays if I really want to check out a tv show, chances are, if it has any merit, I can see an entire season on one or two dvds -without ads!  When young, my children were allowed very little tv and now two of them are readers and the other likes his sports so watches tv a lot. 

(Icons/Graphics) SpeedRacer.jpgI remember my youngest, then 3, coming to me to persuade me that "Speed Racer is a really good person; he always tells the truth and he helps the good guys, so please, may I watch Speed Racer?"   Guess what he does for a living!


(Business Logos) WillowPond_140.jpg 
(Site Photos) WillowPondIsaac.jpgWillow Pond Ranch -Our wonderful herd and skilled instructors teach all stages and most ages both horsemanship and all levels of English riding - from jumping to dressage.

  • Special for clients who are not currently riding at Willow Pond Ranch: Mention Santa Cruz Parent to get a 2 for 1 riding lesson. Buy one at the regular price and get the second one free. Call 464.2276!
  • Enter to win free riding lessons by sending the text "Horsetime" to 59925. Winners chosen every week.

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National TV Turnoff Week, September 20 - 26
(Special Event Page Graphics) no_tv.jpgNational TV Turnoff Week, September 20 - 26

Next week is National TV Turnoff Week, a time when families are asked to go without television for 7 days and involve themselves in more productive activities. This week was founded by TV-Free America, a national non-profit organization founded in 1994. National TV-Turnoff Week is not about bashing or totally eliminating television watching, it's about having more fun and turning "on" your life, an opportunity to rediscover all of the things that we can do other than watching television.

Did you know....
•The average child sees 20,000 commercials (30 seconds in length) per year and watches 1,680 minutes of television per week.
•50% of children ages 6 - 17 have a television in their bedroom.
•70% of day care centers use television during a typical day.
•The average American youth spends 900 hours per year in school and 1500 hours per year watching television.

Here are some great family and kid-related alternatives to television watching. Share your great ideas on Parent Chat
Do a puzzle.  Read a book.  Cook or bake - let the kids choose.  Go swimming (indoor or outdoor).  Take a bike ride.  Listen to music.   Start a diary or journal.   Do an arts and crafts project.   Visit a museum, park or zoo.   Participate in a bookstore or library program, or just visit either.  Do a puzzle.


Time Saving Meal Tips

It's still possible to have pleasant family mealtimes even after school has begun. Check out these back-to-school dinner tips for busy Moms.

1. Have a meal plan. The most important key to having relaxed family dinners even on school nights is having a meal plan. This simplifies both food shopping and meal preparation, and helps you save money to boot. If you need help, check out meals by Fresh Prep Kitchens or Healthy Meal Planning Service.

2. Cook once, eat twice. Cut down on cooking time by cooking large batches and then freezing them for future use. Weekends are great for cooking a full crockpot of soups or stews. Freeze them in milk cartons, then if you're in a hurry you can just tear away the carton and heat up the block of soup.    Roast 2 chickens, one for tonight's dinner and one for chicken salad for later in the week or pop it into the crockpot for soup.

3. Get the kids involved in cooking. Get some help by mobilizing your own troops - your spouse and children - as your kitchen helpers. Cooking is an important life skill and now it's bonding time as well. Send your kids to the Culinary Center of Santa Cruz cooking classes.  Let them surprise you with their new kitchen skills. Reverse roles and model for them how to help in the kitchen. If you have tweens or teens, make Friday night Tweens & Teens night - which means they plan and prepare the meal. They'll learn how to cook, you get the night off (from cooking), and everybody has fun. The only condition is that  everybody has to eat what's prepared.

4. Have an emergency plan. No matter how well you plan in advance, something always comes up. Plan for that as well even if it's canned soup and popcorn. Keep emergency supplies in the pantry so you can throw together a home-cooked meal at a moment's notice such as pasta from a box and marinara sauce in a jar, or Annie's mac and cheese.

5. Stay flexible.  An occasional missed family dinner is no big deal when you know you'll have more throughout the week.

6. Consider school schedules. Take note of school events and other activities in your family calendar - so you can plan your family dinners with them in mind.

7. Celebrate school successes at dinner with a special family meal. Prepare the child's favorite meal and a nice dessert. It's more important to have a meal that's relaxed and delicious, than one that took hours to prepare.

8. Nurture school friendships. Get to know your children's closest school friends by inviting them to dinner once in a while. You might even invite a teacher to dinner!

9. Practice the art of conversation. Engage the children in telling about their day, school, sports or enrichment classes. Bring your own favorite stories to the table. As children get older, introduce a wider range of topics for discussion. The family dinner table is a great opportunity for developing communication skills, good manners, imparting information, sharing ideas, learning how to agree to disagree, etc.

Suki's Blog: Fat thighs to volcano climbs

Suki Wessling

(Site Photos) SukiRedHead_138.jpg"Moms I know say the most brilliant things.

The other day I was talking to a friend while she was changing her baby's diaper, and we were admiring the baby's very chunky thighs and puffy cheeks. "Wouldn't it be great if we valued these things in women, too?" my friend wondered aloud.

Then she took on the persona of a macho young man checking out a "babe" on the street....."   .  >>>>>

Events for You
Please visit our Events Calendar for Details and More Events

(Icons/Graphics) LadyDetectives.jpgBelow is only a partial list of upcoming events and activities so be sure to click on our EVENTS CALENDAR so you do not miss anything.

Use the PARENT PLANNER to click on events and resources you are interested in, go to Parent Planner and click PRINT MY PLANNER or email your list to yourself and a friend.


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Santa Cruz County Fair


9/17 & 18 Thurs & Fri, Education Days, Carnival Wristband Day
9/19 Sat, Junior Livestock Auction
(Site Photos) Fair_Pony_Ride_1.jpg9/20 Sun, Ocean Speedway Destruction Derby Day

Entertainment Schedule, All Shows 7:30pm Amphitheater Stage, Wrestling 7:30pm
9/15 Guitarmy
9/16 Buddy Covington
9/17 Roy Rodgers & The Delta Rhythm Kings
9/18 Blue Oyster Cult
9/20 RYZE - The Band
9/21 Pro Wrestling Revolution

All shows are free with your fair admission. Buy discount advance tickets online.
Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds, 2601 East Lake Avenue, Watsonville


Events Calendar

(Special Event Page Graphics) CoastalCleanup2009_140.jpg9/19, 9am-12pm, Join Save Our Shores for Annual Coastal Cleanup Day at various beach and slough sites throughout Santa Cruz County. We will also have kayak and SCUBA based sites!International Coastal Cleanup Day is the premier event on behalf of the marine environment in the world. In 2008, over 70 countries from around the world banded together and ran beach and river cleanups on the same day.

9/18-20, The 52nd Annual Monterey Jazz Festival presented by Verizon will take place at the Monterey Fairgrounds, September 18 - 20, 2009 with over 500 artists performing on 9 stages for 3 nights and 2 days of the world's best jazz, spread throughout the Festival's 20 acres of magnificent grounds.

9/19, 10pm-4pm Celebrate the Ohlone People of the past with those of the (Site Photos) Ohlone_Mural.jpgpresent at Ohlone Day. Ohlone dancers and demonstrators will share traditional basketry, songs, stories, tools, musical instruments, soap root brushes, and history. The Ohlone language will be incorporated into the day's activities. You can throw an atlatl, make a tule craft, play Ohlone games and try your hand at fire making.

Events Calendar

9/19 12-6pm, Come see the fantastic student art, Open House The Art Studio Showing Student Artwork. Refreshments will be served, across from Rio Del Mar Beach

9/20 Kidrageous Carnival After talking with kids and their families about ways in which cancer takes the fun out of life, we created Kidrageous to celebrate the lives of all Jacob's Heart kids. When daily life is often filled with trips to the hospital, chemotherapy, financial pressure and not much celebrating at all, Kidrageous springs into action, promising laughter instead of tears, balloons and bounce houses instead of bed rest, and fun, fun, fun instead of fatigue.

9/19 and 3rd Sa of every month from 4:30-6pm, Santa Cruz Special Education PTA, A group of parents, teachers and community professionals striving to improve the education, social interactions, and recreational opportunities of children with special needs, membership is $10 per person per year, Sutter Maternity & Surgery Center (in the big room in the back)

Events Calendar

9/19, 10-11am, Parent Workshop: Exploring Homeschooling, Educational Resource Center of Santa Cruz, $5/members, $10/non-members, Learn more about styles of homeschooling and homeschooling options in California. For parents of pre-K through 12th graders.

9/19, 5:30-9:30pm, Building for Books BBQ Dinner & Auction, Scotts Valley Library, $35-$40, 1st Annual Scotts Valley Friends of the Library will host a fundraising BBQ dinner and silent auction. Live music and no host bar.

9/19 (and 3rd Sa of every month), 6-10pm, Open Gym/ Parents night Out, Santa Cruz Sports Central, Kids have a fun while Parents enjoy their evening alone! Ages: 3-13, Always call!

Events Calendar

9/20, Santa Cruz Triathlon, Triathlon for charity! Ages 14+

9/21, 7pm, Randall Grahm, Bookshop Santa Cruz, Visit with Randall Grahm about his new book. Celebrate the release of Randall Grahm's new book, Been Doon So Long, with a book talk, signing, and-of course-wine tasting!

9/22, 7-8:30pm, Delivery, Recovery and Infant Stages of Pregnancy, New Leaf Community Markets, Learn how homeopathy can help throughout pregnancy

9/24-26, Vendor's Faire, Watsonville Birding Festival, Vendors birding/nature art and craftwork for sale, unique and quality items, specializing in nature and wildlife, birding, photography, optics and nature-tourism
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9/25-27, Monterey Bay Birding Festival,
The Birding Festival has something for everyone, especially beginning birders. One of the most spectacular birding venues in North America - the Monterey Bay - will take center stage for the fourth annual Monterey Bay Birding Festival. Discover new places and new birds, and revisit favorite spots in the Pajaro Valley, heart of the Monterey Bay's world-renown birding area, and along the spectacular Central Coast of California.

(Site Photos) TyroManSmall.jpg9/25-27, Oktoberfest at Tyrolean Inn, Friday 4-10pm: 6pm The Karl Lebherz Band, Saturday 2-10pm: 2pm Big Lou's Polka Band, 6pm Alpen California Band; Sunday 2-9pm: 3pm A new show by Alpen California Band, Lots of Fun Activities for Children.


Use the Classifieds.  They're Free and Local!

When you have a question... use Parent Chat.

Santa Cruz County
No TV and Yes Dinner!
September 18, 2009
From the Editor
National TV Turnoff Week, September 20 - 26
Time Saving Meal Tips
Suki's Blog: Fat thighs to volcano climbs
Events for You

Click to view EventsClick to view our Business Directory

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School Corner

9/19 Parent Workshop on Homeschoolin, Ed Resource Center

9/24 Golf Open, Mount Madonna

9/30 BBQ Fundraiser, Glen Arbor

(Business Logos) CabrilloSwimSchool.jpg

Santa Cruz's

Premier Swim School

Run by Aptos High & Cabrillo Threshers head coach Jim Triplett

Jim uses his unique coaching style to help young swimmer's learn the fundamentals of swimming.

Ages 3 & up

Classes 9/13 - 11/15
10 weeks $150

Call Today
688-3613 or 331-1959

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Music Together

A community of families sharing songs, instrument play, rhythm chants, and movement activities in a relaxed, playful, setting.

Ages Babies-5

Santa Cruz, Capitola, Scotts Valley, Ben Lomond, Boulder Creek, Watsonville, Los Gatos

Sept 14 - Dec 11
Class Schedules Here


See our special offer for you in Parent Perks

Culinary Center of Santa Cruz

Great Cooking Classes with teacher Phyllis Endicott

KID-Chef 101

Ages 8-12

Tues 9/22, 3:30-5pm Handmade Crepes

Tues, 9/29 3:30-5pm
Pot Stickers

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TEEN-Chef 101

Ages: 13-18

Thurs, 9/24, 4-6pm Handmade Potato Gnocchi with Sage Butter, Turkey Breast Roulade, Seasonal Vegetable Saute


Culinary Center

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Claudio Franca's
Jiu Jitsu

High quality Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu instruction in a friendly, respectful, family environment

Children Ages 4-9

Youth Ages 10-15

All-Women Ages 16+

Learn More!


(Site Photos) LorrainePhotoforWeb.jpgCoaching Teleclass Weds, 9/23, 6pm


Are You Confusing Your Child or Leading with Certainty?

On this special call, we will explore:
Your "Homework Personality"
Your "Discipline Personality"
Your Parenting Assets and Liabilities
How to Transform Your Challenges into Your GREATEST Strengths!

"Your Child Will Succeed This Year and for LIFE with

Email to register and get call-in instructions:

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