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October 2015

Features

Are We Writing Off Cursive?

Every year, I write a letter to each of my daughters on their birthdays. On a piece of stationery, I recall some of my favorite memories. My intent has been to provide a sense of who they are, what they like, and how they choose to spend their time so…

Community Colleges and You!

Alex Ritchie had it all planned out. After graduating from Clover Hill High School in 2013, she would spend the next four years at Ferrum College in Southwestern Virginia studying engineering. But her finances said otherwise. “My parents were going through a divorce, and that put a financial strain on…

Paying for Private School in RVA

The Garcia family with the director of the Segura Educational Initiative, Maria Baquerizo (left).   Julio Garcia and his wife, Maribel, wanted their three children to have a Catholic education, but knew they couldn’t afford the tuition for private school. Julio works in construction and his wife tends to the…

Columns

Sorry, Not Sorry

Trust me, I do not spend my days on Facebook, Pinterest, or Instagram, but if there’s a #parenting tweet that sums me up, it’s this: I am not an expert. I like Twitter. It’s fun to talk about innocuous things like reading and Virginia529 and movies. I tweet about local…

Separation Clarification

In order to move on we must, for a moment, move back, to the year 2000, to the month of June. The evening is a slow walk, the sky a sanctuary of the new summer’s endless light. We are a young family, Dena and I and Ben. Ben is three.…

Now We Are Six!

I only remember reading three books with my parents when I was a child (my dad, specifically – I’m sure Mom was busy preparing us a healthy meal during this time). One of them, The Story About Ping, is now on something called “the banned book list” because the duck…

Today’s Mom on Juggling Career and Family

Yes, that’s me: the mom with bags slung haphazardly over each shoulder, rushing into preschool with her daughter, trying to balance a coffee cup in one hand while holding her daughter’s hand with the other, as she skips, jumps, and teeters along the edge of every median. After a quick…

Departments

The Right Time for Makeup

Q: At my daughter’s preschool, a few of her classmates have come to school wearing makeup and little high-heel shoes. Now my almost 4-year-old daughter is asking to wear makeup – mostly eyeshadow and lipstick. While I am okay with this, my husband is dead set against it. What are your…

HPV and Your Kids

Prevention is an integral part of good health for everyone. Things like a nutritious diet, physical exercise, adequate sleep, regular doctor’s appointments, age-appropriate screenings, and vaccines are the cornerstones of preventive health. Although we often take them for granted, vaccines play a crucial role by protecting us from the devastating…

For Tailgate or Table

Grilled Sausages with Pepper & Onions Slice a large yellow onion and red and green peppers. Add a swirl of olive oil to a skillet and sauté over medium heat. Season with salt and pepper. Meanwhile, pour 3 to 4 beers into a large stock pot and bring to a…

Paying for College? 5 Strategies

Prepare yourself. $20,298. That’s Virginia’s average in-state cost for one year of college (tuition and room and board). If the average annual cost increase remains the same as the current 6.8 percent, in ten years, the price tag for a year of higher education at a 4-year institution will be $39,189.…

The Important Work of GRASP

Your child, who just yesterday seemed to be learning to read, going on playdates, and talking about what he wanted to be when he grows up, is suddenly a senior in high school. Peers are making plans. There is talk of 4-year college, community college, technical training, or getting a…

“Am I A Cat Person?”

I grew up with cats and dogs, so deciding on the pets to welcome into my furry family was always a no-brainer. If you’re in the early stages of your own pet-finding mission, here are some questions you may want to ask yourself. Do you need instant gratification or constant…

Guess Who’s Coming with Dinner?

In 1646, two now-Virginia tribes signed a peace treaty with the British powers, ending the Third Anglo-Powhatan War. With this, the first reservations (the legal designation for an area of land managed by a Native American tribe rather than the state government) were created. The treaty also exempted the Pamunkeys…

Connect the Dots – or Not!

One dot at a time, kids can create innovative fall artwork using pointillism – just like artists Roy Lichtenstein and Tom Wesselmann created renowned masterpieces in modern art, and Van Gogh used the technique for his famous self portrait. What you need: • Paper • Pencil • Cotton swabs •…

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