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  Santa Cruz Parent Santa Cruz County

November 20, 2018
Happy Thanksgiving

Suki: A Note About Habits

We have a lot to be grateful for
Giving Tuesday
Steve: 7 Tips for Your Child this Holiday Season
Fun Events!
7 Tips + 1 bonus continued
Click to view our Business Directory
  Happy Thanksgiving

(0 A November 2018) PumpkinPieLeaves.jpgTry this recipe for a foolproof pie crust with a surprising ingredient. It's unique! Let the children make the leaves!

Suki writes about habits -making good ones and breaking bad ones- for kids, but heck, her advice works for adults too! I once read that it takes 30 days to fully establish a new habit and if you work on one at a time there will be side benefits.

Amidst the tragedy of loss of life and homes from fire, we have come together to serve, donate and collaborate on solutions. L(0 A November 2018) Thanksgiving_WishingYouTurkey.jpget's keep that positive alchemy alive lest we succumb to the oh-so-tempting malaise of squabbling, name-calling and blame. We ALL are better than that. Best Ways to Help.

May you have a beautiful Thanksgiving with family and friends replete with traditions which will live in your children's hearts forever. Have a great Thanksgiving weekend, Parmalee

 

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  Suki: A Note About Habits

(0 A November 2018) HabbitsScrabble.jpgOne thing that all people -not just kids!- have trouble with is habits.

We all have trouble forming good habits. We all have trouble getting rid of bad habits. Why?

Habits are all in your brain

First of all, let's understand what a habit is. A habit is a pathway in your brain that's nice and comfy and slick like a Slip-n-Slide on a hot summer day. Your brain jumps on that habit pathway without any conscious thought.

If we didn't have habits, we'd have a hard time getting through a day.

  • Imagine if you had to think about how to walk every time you needed to walk across a room!
  • Imagine if every time you were hungry you had to think about where the refrigerator is!

Life would be a little crazy without habits.

Habits are easy to form...  Brain scientists say that you can form a habit just by doing something three times the same way! ...and hard to break... Brain scientists say that it takes conscious, sustained effort to break a habit that we've formed.

Tips for forming a new, good habit

  1. Identify the habit you want to form: for example, doing your homework on Sunday afternoons
  2. Find a way to remind yourself to do it: for example, create a calendar reminder on your device or ask your parent to support you by reminding you
  3. Think of a "trigger": for example, planning to get out your homework after you return from Sunday school
  4. Make sure to do it at least 3 times in a row, maybe more: DO NOT let yourself off the hook

The funny thing is, once you've done this a few times, it will start to feel "wrong" if you don't do it. Note: It might take you longer to form a new habit that you don't really want to form! 

Tips for breaking a bad habit

  1. Identify the habit you want to break: for example, chewing on your fingernails
  2. Identify the "trigger" for that habit: do you always chew them while reading? while in the car? when you're nervous?
  3. Think of something else you could do: hold a fidget toy while reading, (0 A November 2018) SukiNov18.jpgor practice deep breathing when you get nervous
  4. Enlist someone else's help: ask your parent or a friend or sibling to remind you if you fall back into the habit
  5. Keep at it! Remember: breaking habits is harder than forming them.

Be nice to yourself!  It's hard to form new good habits-that's true for all of us! It's hard to break old bad habits-that's true for all of us! Have patience with yourself and keep working on it.

Suki Wessling is a local parent who writes fiction and nonfiction about reading, writing, parenting, education, and homeschooling. If you'd like to learn more about Suki, click here.

 

Ratatouille

Free Outdoor Movie

November 23, 5:30pm

Downtown Library Parking Lot

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  We have a lot to be grateful for

Despite our tumultuous times, struggles for power at societal levels distant yet visible, fearsome disasters that catch people unawares yet inspire heroic efforts and a multitude of generosity and kindnesses, we have much to be thankful for.

(0 A November 2018) FamilyK.jpgI'm thankful for:

My family -brothers and their wives, daughter, sons and spouses, ex-husband/good friend, cousins, nephews, great nephews and nieces and loved ones present only in memories

Dear friends -from all over the country, through the years- with whom I connect, sometimes agreeing, sometimes wrangling over ideas

The ongoing, entertaining, political circus which I can turn off when it's too ridiculous

My relatively good health and the delicious foods that sustain and delight me

The fine education I received which enables me to continue learning by listening, reading, questioning, researching facts and thinking for myself

BBC type period dramas and mysteries which entertain me at the end of busy days, good literature also!

(0 A November 2018) Dog_RascalRidingShotgunNov.jpgMy boxes of paints, brushes, canvasses willing to me to create favorite images

Beaches and oceans all around the perimeter of our country, California's golden hills dotted with dark oaks and black angus cattle, brilliant bougainvillea climbing up trellises and exploding over walls, fragrant roses in hues of pink, yellow  and salmon

My spunky, snuggly pup who likes to travel with me, barks fiercely at strangers and loves to come home to dive into his "blanky"

  Giving Tuesday

#GIVING TUESDAY, A GLOBAL DAY OF GIVING


Celebrated on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving (in the U.S.), #GivingTuesday kicks off the charitable season, when many focus on their holiday and end-of-year giving.
Visit www.SantaCruzGives.org.

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If you have walked on a clean beach, enjoyed a park, attended an arts event, music event, adopted a pet, received health care services, or enrolled a child in an activity-you have encountered the good work of numerous local nonprofits.

Often the benefits are not visible-when the work prevents or mitigates negative impacts. One thing is certain:  Our community would be far less desirable without the dedication of these groups, driven by nothing more than a desire to improve our collective circumstances.

We vetted and selected 33 valuable local nonprofits and created a platform to make it easy for you to browse, donate and help make our community an even better place to live.

  Steve: 7 Tips for Your Child this Holiday Season

(0 A November 2018) SteveSpitalny.jpg7 Tips for Your Child this Holiday Season - and one bonus suggestion

As we approach the end of November, thoughts turn toward holiday times and family. For some reasons, this is the time of year when extended family meal gatherings and gift giving has become the norm. 

What about the young children? How can we support their needs during this time of year?

I would like to offer seven suggestions about how to make this time of year, which can become hectic and full of stress, a more supportive experience for your young child, and for you. For all 7 + 1 >>>>>>

Explore the world of the young child with Stephen Spitalny, early childhood consultant and writer. Steve offer lectures, workshops and mentoring around the world. Steve is back in the classroom with the kindergartners. You can connect with Steve here.

  Fun Events!
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NOVEMBER

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CALENDAR

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Gateway School K-8, Middle School Information Night 11/29; Middle School Sneak Peek Day 11/30


Gateway SchoolK-8, School Day Tours 12/4

 

Mount Madonna School PreK-12, Campus Tour 12/7

 

Mount Madonna PreK-12, Honk 12/8 & 9

 

Mount Madonna PreK-12, Elementary Winter Concert 12/14

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Joy!

 

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World Chess Championship Parties

 Aptos Library

11/24 & 26

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Tree Lighting & Santa in Felton
click to view website
  Tree Lighting & Santa in Felton
Felton Business Association
Date: 11/24/2018 at 6:00pm
Ages: All
Details: Cookies, hot chocolate,hot cider, carols, Santa Claus and tree lighting!
Special Instructions: Felton's Heritage Tree is located at the deck in the middle of Felton.
City: Felton view all details >>
     
Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot
click to view website
  Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot
First Presbyterian Church Salinas
Date: 11/22/2018
Details: Make an early morning Turkey Trot part of your family's Thanksgiving Day tradition
City: Salinas Phone: (831) 422-7811 view all details >>
     
Kirking of the Tartans
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  Kirking of the Tartans
St. Andrew's Church
Date: 11/24/2018 from 6:00pm to 9:00pm
Details: Come in your tartan!
City: Ben Lomond view all details >>
     
Community Open House
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  Community Open House
Monterey Bay Aquarium
Date: Every day (Dec 1-Dec 9) from 10:00am to 5:00pm
Details: Free admission for Monterey, Santa Cruz, and San Benito County residents
City: Monterey view all details >>
     
Small Business Saturday
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  Small Business Saturday
Streetlight Records
Date: 11/24/2018
Details: Show your support for local, independent businesses by making purchases at your favorite small businesses.
City: Santa Cruz view all details >>
     
JOY!
click to view website
  JOY!
Tandy Beal & Company
Date: Every day (Nov 23-Dec 2)
Details: Dazzling extravaganza for the whole family, JOY!, A Holiday Show with Circus, Dance, and Live Music
City: Santa Cruz view all details >>
     
Reindeer Romp at SF Zoo
click to view website
  Reindeer Romp at SF Zoo
San Francisco Zoo
Date: Every Fri and Sa (Nov 17-Jan 1)
Details: Come see the reindeer on loan from Santa
Special Instructions: Sloat Blvd at Great highway
City: San Francisco Phone: (415) 753-7080 view all details >>
     
Curious Contraptions
click to view website
  Curious Contraptions
Exploratorium, Pier 15
Date: Every day (Nov 8-Jan 20) from 10:00am to 5:00pm
Details: A whimsical winter exhibition where small sculptures are brought to life by intricate arrangements of handmade cams, cranks, and
City: San Francisco Phone: (415) 528-4444 view all details >>
     
Surfin Santa & Tree Lighting
click to view website
  Surfin Santa & Tree Lighting
Caitola-Soquel Chamber of Commerce
Date: 11/24/2018 from 12:00pm to 5:00pm
Details: Santa, tree lighting and small biz shopping!
City: Capitola view all details >>
     
Holiday Lights Train
click to view website
  Holiday Lights Train
Roaring Camp
Date: Every Fri and Sa (Nov 23-Dec 23)
Details: Choo, Choo, Santa Claus is coming to town, not by sleigh, not by snow but by Train!
City: Felton view all details >>
     
Holiday On Ice
click to view website
  Holiday On Ice
Beach Boardwalk
Date: Every day (Nov 17-Jan 6)
Details: Create a new holiday tradition with family and friends ice skating by the sea
City: Santa Cruz view all details >>
     
Holiday Homeless Garden Sales
click to view website
  Holiday Homeless Garden Sales
Homeless Garden Project
Date: Every day (Nov 12-Dec 24)
Details: Come visit us starting Nov. 12th at 1338 Pacific Ave, next to El Palomar restaurant.
City: Santa Cruz view all details >>
     
Miracle On 34th Street
click to view website
  Miracle On 34th Street
Mountain Community Theater
Date: Every day (Nov 16-Dec 9)
Ages: 12+
Details: The heart-warming story of a gentle old man named Kris Kringle who believes he is Santa Claus and who uses kindness and generosi
City: Ben Lomond Phone: (831) 336-4777 view all details >>
     
Holiday Tree Walk
click to view website
  Holiday Tree Walk
Roaring Camp Railroads
Date: Every Su, Fri and Sa (Nov 23-Dec 9)
Details: Delight in the tree-lined walk of festive holiday trees displayed atop Bear Mountain
City: Felton Phone: (831) 335-4484 view all details >>
     
Tree Lighting & Santa in Felton
click to view website
  Tree Lighting & Santa in Felton
Felton Business Association
Date: 11/24/2018 at 6:00pm
Ages: All
Details: Cookies, hot chocolate,hot cider, carols, Santa Claus and tree lighting!
Special Instructions: Felton's Heritage Tree is located at the deck in the middle of Felton.
City: Felton view all details >>
     
Prospective Volunteer Information Night and After-Hours Shopping
click to view website
  Prospective Volunteer Information Night and After-Hours Shopping
Seymour Marine Discovery Center
Date: 11/28/2018 from 5:00pm to 8:00pm
Ages: All
Details: The Seymour Marine Discovery Center is dedicated to educating people about the role scientific research plays in the understandi
City: Santa Cruz Phone: (831) 459-3694 view all details >>
     
     
  7 Tips + 1 bonus continued

1. Find ways to engage your child in preparing food, in cooking. Involve the child to the extent of their abilities in cutting and mixing, stirring and pouring. Being part of the process will also help them to become more adventurous eaters.


2. If your family has a gift-giving tradition, figure out some things your children can make  as gifts. As a grandparent, I can tell you that a gift made by a grandchild is so much more valuable to me than any store bought item. Children can make gifts for each other, gifts for the parent who isn't home at the time the gift is being made, gifts for the postal delivery person, etc....And food gifts are a wonderful way to go. (See #1 above) And if you give gifts to your child, consider that less is more. Giving a pile of gifts makes each individual gift lose value in the bigger scheme of things.


3. Maintain your child's daily routine during holiday times as much as is possible. When you feel the need to go to the mall, find someone to be at home with your child so they don't have to experience the overstimulation, the frantic rushing, and what always ends up as staying there too late. All young children do better in every way when their mealtimes and sleep times come at consistent times in the day. And let's not forget that home cooked meals are more nutritious than any type of fast food you can get while in the rush of shopping.


4. Consider how much training you want to give your child in becoming a member of consumer culture
. Remember that young children learn by imitation, and habits that are learned at a young age are deeply imprinted and are hard to change. What about developing a family culture of making gifts. You know all those tools gathering dust in your garage, use them to make a wonderful wooden chest or shelf. And the sewing machine you got a few years ago, try it out! Make a simple quilt or doll clothes. Knitting a scarf or hat doesn't take very long if you dust off those skills. Another idea is to develop a family tradition of attending a performance or concert together as a sort of gift to each other.


5. Try not to use the screen to occupy your child while you are otherwise busy. Your child's brain will thank you for it. 


6. Remember that as an adult, your senses have developed filters to minimize overstimulation. Your child does not have those filters yet and their senses are more sensitive than yours. Try and be conscious of volume levels and how much overall stimulation is going on around your child. 


7. One amazing way to connect with your child at any time of year is through stories.
Tell stories to your child. Read stories to your child. And maybe start a holiday tradition of giving one special book to your child. 

Bonus: I would like to offer one more holiday season tip, and this is for the adults. We adults need to have tools for maintaining calm and centered-ness when chaos and hectic-ness are all around. Rick Hanson is a teacher whom I deeply respect. His ideas and practices can help you get a sense for your own well being, and find ways to feel more safety, satisfaction and connection in your life. Watch this video for more info....


And finally, through December 31, all of my books are on sale at 20% off.

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