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Letter from the Editor August 2013

Rachel Kalina

Growing up in the tri-state area, I always experienced a flutter of excitement during back-to-school season. I couldn’t wait to pick out the perfect Trapper Keeper and Lisa Frank accessories at the local supply store (am I dating myself?), where I’d run into peers I hadn’t seen since the spring. Each year, my parents ensured my backpack was brimming with colorful binders, funky pencil cases, eccentric erasers, and all the loose-leaf my terrible handwriting (good thing I type for a living) could possibly grace.

My folks not only provided for my basic needs, but they also prepared me with the best possible tools for whatever life experiences the academic year would bring. Consider this month’s PARENTGUIDE News your toolkit to share with the family as you gear up for school.

Teaching our kids how to stay safe outside of the home is a top priority, and “Self-Defense” by Charley and Tracy Vega features simple techniques that even young children can use. From creating a “safe list” of approved caretakers for little ones to labeling belongings with a special code rather than a name, the piece offers valuable talking points for discussion.

Henry A. Paul, M.D., has you covered if your child needs extra support with the follow up to last month’s article in “Pediatric Mental Disorders Part 2.” Learn how to broach the subject of visiting a psychiatrist, what to expect during an appointment, and what happens once a diagnosis is given. In case you missed it, the first half of Paul’s series may be found here.

And whether this year brings your youngster’s first days in pre-k or a joyous return to grade school, it’s never too early to start thinking about college. Michael L. Fitzgerald’s “Smart Savings for College” lends insight into the best ways to begin and grow a fund for the future.
Take some time to yourself, too, and get perspective and funny anecdotes from moms on our new blog, The Sandbox Social, at www.parentguidenews.com. Share your favorite posts and join the conversation in the comments section.

While summer winds down, savor its final carefree days and gatherings— especially those with scrumptious food! Be sure to capture these yummy moments and share them on our website for a chance to win a Shark® Sonic Duo™ floor cleaner in the Favorite Foods Photo Contest. If you’re in it to win it, “Like” our Facebook page for tons more giveaways and prizes that just might help you check some items off your own back-to-school list.

Wishing you sunny skies ahead,

Rachel Kalina