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Archive for July, 2009

PARENT TALKS: Baby Basics, Anger Issues & Strong Girls

Playground “Booties Camp: Baby Basics”
July 8 from 10 a.m. to noon at Bananas, Oakland
First in a series of five classes, ranging from baby basics to yoga, for new and expecting parents. Register online.

“Childhood Matters: When A Child Is Angry”
July 12 from 7 to 8 a.m. on 98.1 KISS-FM and streamed live on Rona Renner, RN, and panelists discuss children, anger issues and self-control.

“Living with Threes and Fours”
July 15 at 7 p.m. at Bananas, Oakland
Speaker: Meg Zweiback, RN, discusses the challenges and joys of those preschool years, and how to encourage and preserve spontaneity and curiosity while teaching cooperation.
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Posted on Monday, July 6th, 2009
Under: Parenting Issues | No Comments »

5 Water Safety Tips to Keep Your Beach Babies Safe

Summer camp (courtesy of MCT Direct) For all the beachy joys of summer, it’s also a season of tragic drownings. And this year’s statistics are more horrifying than ever. In addition to the deaths of a Walnut Creek mother and her 5-year-old daughter in the riptide off Montara State Beach on Monday, a 27-year-old woman and 15-year-old girl drowned in a riptide off the Jersey shore on Tuesday. In Las Vegas, two toddlers died in swimming pools this week, and 50 died in drowning accidents in Texas before summer had even started.

So if your family is headed for the seashore, a lake or anyplace with any body of water this holiday weekend, please take a moment to read through these five water safety tips from, then click over to the National Weather Service site for tips on surviving riptides.

1. Never turn your back on your child around water. At the beach, it’s important that the supervising adult is no farther away than 10 feet from a young child.
Segment the supervision responsibilities so there are never questions about which adult is responsible for watching the child and be aware of the distractions unique to the beach/shore setting: heat, noise, people-watching, sun glare, and the monotony of a young child’s repetitive play. Even professional beach lifeguards guard the beach in timed segments… you should too.
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Posted on Thursday, July 2nd, 2009
Under: Health & Safety | No Comments »

FOURTH of July Berry Cake

Fourth of July Cake (Photo courtesy of
Too mouthwateringly adorable. We always make a flag cake for Fourth of July – and stars and stripes cookies too. So naturally, this photo on caught our attention. Not sure about the recipe though, which involves layering squares of frozen pound cake with instant vanilla pudding and broken up Snickers bars. It sounds kinda like an ad for Sara Lee, Jell-O and the Mars company, which – surprise! – owns the Bright Ideas site. Better idea: use the gorgeous photo as inspiration for your own stars and stripes cake. It doesn’t matter what kind of cake you use for the base… mmmm, chocolate? Ice it in white buttercream (which is more picnic-friendly than the whipped cream BrightIdeas used), and adorn it with blueberries and strawberries or raspberries. This year we’re trying a Barefoot Contessa cake that uses obscene amounts of butter and cardiologist banned numbers of eggs, plus a cream cheese frosting and raspberries and bloobs. Yum. What’s on your Fourth of July menu?

Posted on Wednesday, July 1st, 2009
Under: Cuisine | No Comments »

FAB FIVE for the Weekend

Alice in Wonderland (Courtesy Dave Hanney/Civic Arts Education) 1. Civic Arts Education’s newest musical, “Alice in Wonderland,” puts children into the roles of not just Alice and the White Rabbit, but the Tweedles, the Queen of Hearts, Cheshire Cat and all 50 or so other characters. Two shows, July 2 at Walnut Creek’s Shadelands Auditorium. ($10-$12)

2. Walnut Creek’s Bedford Gallery is hosting a radical skateboard art exhibit this summer. Explore skate art from decks and wheels to sculpture July 5-Sept. 13 at “Full Deck: A Short History of Skate Art.” ($3-$5, kids under 12 are free)
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Posted on Wednesday, July 1st, 2009
Under: Family Entertainment | No Comments »