A New Adventure
I happen to know by personal experience that after a disaster; there is life again, an abundant life.
Last year when my marriage fell apart abruptly a friend told me that God can take my pile of ashes and turn it into beauty. At the time I had no idea how. It took me months to say anything to my boss…6 months to even tell you about it…I was afraid you might not allow me to do this with you every morning, but I was so wrong.
All I have ever wanted to do is be an encouragement. That’s what I have felt my purpose is. I learned all you have to do to accomplish that, is to be honest about your life. The minute I started talking about what was really going on in my life, and how I was trying to balance work and 3 children under 6 as a single parent, you encouraged me. You didn’t cast me away, you loved me through this past year. You sent me cards and emails, phone calls, and facebook posts, you made me feel like I was not alone. Thank you.
A friend sent me this quote: Just when the caterpillar thought life was over, she became a butterfly. The thing is though that butterfly has to go through the struggle…she has to wiggle herself out of that cocoon inch by inch on her own in order to survive outside of it. That’s what I’ve been doing this past year, and now it’s time for me to fly. This is my last day on the air at WGTS. I have accepted a new position at a national Christian radio network in California.
This is the hardest part; saying goodbye to the people that have held me up over this past year.
So…Thank you. Thank you for waking up with me in the morning…sipping coffee with me in your car while you drop your kids off at the babysitter or at school and head to work. Thank you for laughing with me (or at me), and for crying with me, and loving me through this past year of my life.
You are why I do this every day. My prayer has been that God speak through me to encourage you and to inspire you, but it turns out you did that for me. You are the reason I got through this past year. You gave me a reason to wake up and go to work. You gave me purpose. You encouraged me.
To my Co-Host Brennan, Producer Spencer, Eric our board op, and Becca our intern…you have been my confidants every morning, and I can’t tell you how much your friendship has meant to me. This is a very special group of people at WGTS…they are my family.
My favorite poet, Maya Angelou wrote: “Life is pure adventure and the sooner we realize that we are able to treat life as art.”
So here’s to a new adventure in California…and to here’s to a blank canvas…that God, and my 3 little sunshines; Emily, Andy, and Zoe…are ready to paint lots of bright colors on…
It might be messy, but God will make it beautiful.
Amanda and the 3 little sunshines Emily, Andy, and Zoe
Family Safety Tip: Cell Phone Radiation
On Tuesday, scientists at the World Health Organization announced that the agency will now list mobile phone use in the same “carcinogenic hazard” category as lead, engine exhaust and chloroform.
There haven’t been enough long-term studies to make a clear conclusion if radiation from cell phones is safe, but there was enough data to persuade the WHO of a possible connection.
Cell phones use non-ionizing radiation, which doesn’t damage DNA the way ionizing radiation does. The cell phone radiation operates more like very low power microwaves, but nobody really likes to think of leaning their face on a low-powered microwave.
If the WHO’s labeling of cell phone use as “possibly carcinogenic to humans” has gotten you alarmed, here are some quick basic tips to limit your exposure.
- Get wired
It’s no coincidence that most cell phones come with a wired ear piece.
A wired headset will automatically decrease your radiation exposure because the phone is away from the body. Every inch you can get away from the body reduces the amount of radiation you are absorbing.
A wired headset may still transmit radiation through the wire – but it is a very low level. If that is a concern, you can buy a ferrite bead for just a few bucks at most electronic stores. It attaches to the wire and it absorbs any radiation traveling through the wire, reducing how much enters your body.
And it’s not too inconvenient. CNN’s chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta said he uses an earpiece because his neck doesn’t hurt as much after being on a long phone call. Gupta: Cell phones, brain tumors and a wired earpiece
– Use the speakerphone
This could get quite annoying, if you’re in a public place. But experts say that using the speakerphone function is helpful because you’re keeping the phone away from your brain. Every inch you can get the phone away from your body reduces the radiation. For example, holding out the cell phone by two inches drops the radiation by a factor of four, Magda Havas, an associate professor with the Institute for Health Studies at Trent University in Ontario, Canada, had told CNN.
But try not to share your conversation with the whole world. Thanks.
– Don’t wear Bluetooth all the time
Bluetooth wireless earpieces will expose you to some radiation. However, it would be much less radiation than a cell phone.
The problem is that most people wear their Bluetooth all the time. And this isn’t a good look on anyone.
If you use a Bluetooth device, switch it from ear to ear so you don’t have too much exposure on one side. Just take it out of your ear when you aren’t on the phone.
– Radiation hot spots
Cell phones don’t always emit the same level of radiation. For example, your phone will emit the most radiation when connecting to cellular towers.
But a moving phone (like if you are talking while driving) will continually connect to towers that come in and out of range – and this automatically increases power to a maximum as the phone repeatedly attempts to connect to a new antenna. A weak signal will also cause your phone to work harder, giving off more radiation. So avoid using your phone in elevators, buildings and rural areas. Research shows your device emits more radiation when transmitting than when receiving.
– Read the fine print
Most of us ignore those manuals that come with our gadgetry. But most cell phone safety manuals tell consumers to not keep the phone next to their head, or even in your pocket. Apple iPhone 4 says 5/8 inch away from the body when transmitting. And the BlackBerry Bold says to keep it least 0.98 inch from your body when the BlackBerry device is in use.
If you keep it next to your body, the manufacturers can’t guarantee that the amount of radiation you’re absorbing will be a safe level.
– Don’t talk, text
If you don’t want to hold the phone next to your face all the time, send text messages or use your email or messaging services if you have a smartphone. This way you avoid putting the phone to your head altogether.
And our friends at CNN Tech say the general rule of thumb is that the smarter the phone, the more radiation.
CNN’s John Sutter contributed to this blog.
Family Safety Tip: Kids and Energy Drinks
Sports and energy drinks are hugely popular with kids. But the nation’s pediatricians are not such big fans. They’re now telling kids to lay off the energy drinks, and to use sports drinks only when they really need them — like when they’re playing sports.
A new clinical report from the American Academy of Pediatrics warns that energy drinks, or any other drink with caffeine, should be off limits to children and teenagers. That includes colas and coffee drinks.
Caffeine not only interferes with sleep, it can cause anxiety, raise heartbeats, and increase the risk of dehydration. “There’s great concern about what [caffeine] does over time or in high doses to a young, growing body that’s not fully mature,” says Dr. Holly Benjamin. She is a pediatric sports medicine specialist at the University of Chicago, and coauthor of the new report, which was published in Pediatrics. “It’s almost like a stress to your body.”
Sports drinks don’t have that problem, but they do have sugar as the primary ingredient. That causes another problem. “Kids will drink a Gatorade after school,” Benjamin says. “They’ll drink a Gatorade at lunch. They’ll drink a Gatorade with dinner.”
All that sugar can contribute to obesity and tooth decay, the pediatricians say. Instead, children and teenagers should be drinking water, and lots of it. They also should be drinking two glasses of low-fat milk daily (lots of good protein, vitamin D, and calcium), and perhaps one or two glasses of juice. Benjamin says: “Other than that it’s water, water, water.”
Oprah talks Jesus
Here is the transcript:
“People often ask me, What is the secret of success of the show? How have we lasted 25 years? I nonjokingly say, ‘My team and Jesus.’ Because nothing but the hand of God has made this possible for me. … I know I’ve never been alone, and you haven’t either. And I know that that presence, that flow—some people call it grace—is working in my life at every single turn. And yours too, if you let it in. It’s closer than your breath, and it is yours for the asking.
“I have felt the presence of God my whole life. Even when I didn’t have a name for it, I could feel the voice bigger than myself speaking to me, and all of us have that same voice. Be still and know it. You can acknowledge it or not. You can worship it or not. You can praise it, you can ignore it or you can know it. Know it. It’s always there speaking to you and waiting for you to hear it in every move, in every decision. I wait and I listen. I’m still—I wait and listen for the guidance that’s greater than my meager mind.
“The only time I’ve ever made mistakes is when I didn’t listen. So what I know is, God is love and God is life, and your life is always speaking to you. First in whispers. … It’s subtle, those whispers. And if you don’t pay attention to the whispers, it gets louder and louder. It’s like getting thumped upside the head, like my grandmother used to do. … You don’t pay attention to that, it’s like getting a brick upside your head. You don’t pay attention to that, the whole brick wall falls down. That’s the pattern I’ve seen in my life, and it’s played out over and over again on this show.
“You all have been a safe harbor for me for 25 years. It’s strange, I know, but you have been. And what I hope is that you all will be that safe harbor for somebody else—their safe place to fall. Do for them what you all are telling me the show has done for you. Connect. Embrace. Liberate. Love somebody. Just one person. And then spread that to two. And as many as you can. You’ll see the difference it makes.
Until we meet again . . . to God be the Glory.”
How to Help Tornado Victims
The organization has spent $41 million thus far responding to the seven-week onslaught while raising $33.6 million to cover the costs.
The Red Cross has launched 29 separate relief operations in 22 states, responding to wildfires in Texas, flooding along swollen rivers, and the rash of tornadoes that have killed more than 500 people. More than 9,200 Red Cross disaster-responders have been deployed; they’ve served more than 2.1 million meals and snacks, and opened more than 200 shelters.
Click here to donate to The American Red Cross
Family Safety Tip: Sunscreen
After testing 22 spray-on, cream and lotion sunscreens, Consumer Reports gave top honors to the least-expensive products. The magazine recognized three “Best Buys” that provided excellent water-resistant protection for less than 88 cents per ounce:
Up & Up Sport SPF 30 by Target
No-Ad with Aloe and Vitamin E SPF 45
Equate Baby SPF 50
Safe and Fun Stuff to do with the Family: May 20-22
Joint Service Open House and Airshow
Saturday and Sunday everyone is invited to the open house at Andrews Air Force Base as the best the U.S. Military has to offer are put on display, including the Air Force Thunderbirds air show and the Army’s Golden Knights parachute team. The best part…it’s FREE http://jsoh.org/
Bike DC Day
On Sunday, enjoy 20 miles of biking with your family and friends on car-free streets, highways and parkways.The ride begins on the National Mall in front of the U. S. Capitol. Bike up Pennsylvania Avenue to the White House and cross the Potomac River into Virginia on the Theodore Roosevelt Bridge/I-66. Yes, the freeway will be bicycles only for Bike DC. Relish the views of Washington and Georgetown from the George Washington Memorial Parkway. Pedal past some of the Nation’s most treasured sites: the Marine Corps Memorial, Arlington Cemetery, the Pentagon and the Air Force Memorial. Cross the Potomac River again to reach the finish line back in Washington. The entire ride is on streets closed to motorized traffic.Bike DC will be held rain or shine. http://www.bikedc.net/
McLean Day Festival
McLean Day features live entertainment, carnival rides large and small, activities for children such as pony rides and face-painting, great music and terrific food! This year’s menu includes, crabcakes, BBQ, gyros, falafel, bratwurst, schnitzel, burgers, subs, kettle korn, cotton candy, ice cream and snow cones, pizza, the famous Rotary Club hotdogs ( a meal for a great cause indeed!) and crowd-favorite funnel cakes! 11 a.m.–5 p.m. | Lewinsville Park | 1675 Chain Bridge Rd, McLean, VA | Admission: FREE
Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival at Reston Town Center
The popular festival celebrating its 20th Anniversary this year will offer plenty to see, taste, hear and do – from hand crafted, one of a kind artwork, a host of live musical and visual performance arts, artist demonstrations, children’s activities, and food and refreshments. The festival is free and open to the public however a voluntary donation of $10 to GRACE at the events ArtCarts, individuals will receive a $10 gift certificate to dine at participating Reston Town Center restaurants. Reston Town Center | 12001 Market Street, Reston, VA 20190 | www.NorthernVirginiaFineArtsFestival.org
Humane Society of Fairfax County’s Woof Walk
The event will include a 3-mile walk, silent auction, contests, food and vendor booths. Additionally, there will be dogs available for adoption. Each walker will get a free T-shirt and their dog will get a bandana. Admission is $20 if pre-registered or $25 at the event with $5 for each additional group member. Proceeds benefit the Humane Society of Fairfax County, a non-profit organization that rescues and protects both domestic and wild animals. For more information, www.hsfc.org. Contact: Humane Society of Fairfax County, Phone: (703) 385-7387 Sunday, May 22 | 8a – 1p (rain or shine) Burke Lake Park Amphitheater 7315 Ox Road, Fairfax Station, Virginia | Admission: $20 if pre-registered; $25 admission at the event with $5 for each additional group member.
Taste of Arlington
The restaurant bubble in Arlington these days translates into more choices than ever at this annual foodie street fair; among the restaurants serving up bites are Bayou Bakery, Rustico and Willow. Tickets include eight “tastes” Ballston Common Mall4238 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, VA | 703-528-3527
Family Field Day, Bowie.
Come to an old-fashioned Family Field day. We will be hosting 3-legged races, balloon tosses, a pie eating contest, an egg toss, a tug-of-war, our longest game of musical chairs, and much more. South Bowie Community Center, Bowie. 12-4:30 pm.Ages 5 and up. Free. 301-249-1622, pgparks.com
Chesapeake Bay Blues Festival.
Feel the vibe with headliners Chris Isaak and Kenny Wayne Sheperd at this fest. Sandy Point State Park, Annapolis. 10:30 am-8 pm.$50 one day, $70 both days. $65 & $115 day of. Children under 10 free w/ paying adult. Through May 22. bayblues.org
Gaithersburg Book Festival
The Gaithersburg Book Festival will be held on Saturday, May 21, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the grounds of City Hall, featuring a host of talent, panel discussions, workshops and a special Children’s Village and the lively Ogden Nash Coffee House, which will showcase local musicians and spoken word performances. More than 80 local and nationally-known authors will participate in discussions and book signings. There will also be poetry readings, music, food and children activities.Gaithersburg City Hall31 S. Summit Ave., Gaithersburg, MD | 301-258-6350
Pirates of the Carribean PG 13
Common Sense Media recommends it for kids 12 and up. Parents need to know that the fourth installment in the Pirates of the Caribbean series is actually slightly less violent and creepy than the previous movies. But rum and wine do still flow in a couple of scenes, and there are loads of innuendo-laden comments (most thanks to Johnny Depp‘s iconic Captain Jack Sparrow) — as well as all of the swordfighting, explosions, and felled pirates and soldiers that audiences are used to in this franchise. Though there are some deaths, none are bloody/graphic. And although this movie isn’t an age-appropriate pick for young kids who might be frightened by some of the pirates and fighting, this shorter-and-simpler edition is fine for older tweens and up.
Safe and Fun Stuff to do with the Family: May 13-15
Spring Jam Fest with P.O.D.
The movement kicks off Saturday, May 14, at Bull Run Park – Special Events Center at 7700 Bull Run Drive, Centreville Virginia from 11am to 10pm! Doors open at 10:30am for General Admission. We have tried hard to put together the best possible lineup to complete our goal of outreaching through music, especially to youth and young adults, while keeping tickets at just $12 and $15! Top National and Local Bands, Games, Activities, Vendors, and an 11 hour party that everyone will enjoy.
Taste of Arlington
The restaurant bubble in Arlington these days translates into more choices than ever at this annual foodie street fair; among the restaurants serving up bites are Bayou Bakery, Rustico and Willow. Tickets include eight “tastes” (food can be purchased for one taste; beer and wine equal two tastes).Ballston Common Mall 4238 Wilson Blvd., Arlington, VA | 703-528-3527
Herndon Junior Golf Clinic
Annual Herndon Centennial Junior Golf Clinic. Open to kids age 7 – 16. Clubs provided, or kids may bring their own. Registration required. Town of Herndon Centennial Golf Course 909 Ferndale Avenue, Herndon, VA Admission: FREE
Korean Bell Garden Grand Opening 11am Meadowlark Botanical Gardens
This is a special event to celebrate the installation of a 3 ton bell that is the centerpiece of the Korean Bell Garden at Meadowlark. It is the only Korean Bell Garden in the Western Hemisphere and the only Korean bell pavilion on the east coast. The event on the 14th will include free Korean food, free Korean/English cook books for the first 200, as well special traditional Korean artists flown in by the Korean government just for this occasion. 9750 Meadowlark Gardens Court, Vienna, VA
History Comes Alive at Frying Pan Spring Meeting House
Celebrate the rich history and diverse culture of the Frying Pan Spring Meeting House, one of the oldest, racially-integrated churches in Virginia. Constructed in 1791, the simple white building located at Frying Pan Farm Park housed an integrated congregation, sheltered wounded Civil War soldiers and survived 200 years of community growth and change. The Victorian Society of Falls Church, dressed in period attire, will make history come alive with song and stories of the Civil War activity that took place at the Meeting House. Archaeologists will also be on hand to share historical artifacts found on the site and highlight cemetery restoration plans. Hear stories of the white and black 19th century parishioners who worshiped there and are buried on the church grounds. Enjoy light refreshments in the church yard, just as the orginial parishioners once did.Phone: (703) 437-9101 Times: 1pm-4pm Frying Pan Farm Park 2709 West Ox Road, Herndon, VA Admission: $5
Yoga on the National Mall
The big draw of Sunday’s afternoon of movement on the Mall will be a class at 3:30 led by California-based Shiva Rea, who is well-known among practitioners as the queen of the popular prana flow style of yoga. There will also be partner classes and demonstrations of acro-yoga, which, as the name suggests, is a gravity-defying blend of yoga and acrobatics.
Swashbuckling reenactors will explain what life was like for an 18th Century pirate. The event includes children’s activities, live music, a children’s pirate costume contest and a treasure hunt.
Darnall’s Chance House Museum | 14800 Governor Oden Bowie Dr., Upper Marlboro, MD | 301-952-8010
Kiddy Hop Swing Dance
Kids are invited to a family-friendly swing dance | Glen Echo Park | 7300 MacArthur Blvd | Glen Echo, MD | 301-634-2222
Butterfly Exhibit at Brookside Gardens.
Learn about the life cycle of butterflies, and be surrounded by hundreds of North American, Costa Rican and Asian butterflies flying freely inside the conservatory. Learn more about how to attract butterflies to your backyard. Brookside Gardens, Wheaton. Sunday, May 08, 2011, 10:00am – 4:00pm10 a.m.-4 p.m. All ages. $6 adults, $4 ages 3-12, under 2 years free. No strollers. montgomeryparks.org/brookside
Family Safety Tip:
Gov’t warns kids’ tabletop chairs not safe
The Associated Press
The Consumer Product Safety Commission says children could be hurt in certain versions of the “metoo” clip-on tabletop chairs imported by Colorado-based phil&teds USA Inc. The CPSC says numerous children – believed to be about a dozen – have been injured.
The chairs have metal clamps that attach to most table tops, such as a restaurant table. The CPSC says those clamps can easily come loose, causing the chair to detach and sending the child plummeting to the floor.
Fingers or hands can also be pinched or crushed when the chairs partially detach from a table, catching a child’s fingers or hands between the clamp and a metal bar on the front of the chair.
The commission says the company refused to agree to a national recall that was acceptable to the agency.
A call to the company in Fort Collins seeking comment was not immediately returned.
The clip-on chairs involved in the commission’s warning do not have plastic spacers between the table clamps and the front metal bar.
The company also has clip-on chairs with plastic spacers between the clamps and bar – and those chairs are under investigation, the CPSC said.
On its website, the company is offering rubberized grips to cover the chair’s clamps. CPSC spokesman Scott Wolfson says the grip replacement kits being offered by phil&teds will not keep children safe in the seat.
“Even with those rubber boots, the chair can still slip off a table,” said Wolfson. “We believe the company needs to come up with a free remedy that will prevent children from falling or having an amputation hazard if one side of the chair detaches.”
The commission said the company had claimed on its website to be offering the replacement kits in cooperation with the CPSC. The commission says there was no such agreement and maintains the kits fail to keep children safe in the chair.
The “metoo” chairs have been sold at nationwide retailers such as Target and Toys R Us as well as online.
Family Safety Tip: How to talk to your kids about Osama bin Laden
It’s all over the news, and your kids are listening and watching. Maybe you’re getting the question: ”Mommy…why are people happy that Osama bin Laden was killed?
The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry has some advice for how to approach a discussion with your child about recent terrorism related events, like the killing of Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden:
1. Wait until your child is ready to talk, don’t force a conversation. Help them express themselves, through art or writing.
2. Answer a child’s questions honestly, using age appropriate concepts for their level of understanding. Don’t overload a child with too much information.
3. Be prepared to repeat explanations or conversations. Asking the same questions over may be your child’s way of asking for reassurance.
4. Avoid stereotyping groups of people by race, nationality, or religion. Use the opportunity to teach tolerance and explain prejudice.
5. Don’t let children watch lots of violent or upsetting images on TV. Repetitive frightening images or scenes can be very disturbing, especially to young children. Children who have experienced trauma or losses may show more intense reactions to tragedies or news of war or terrorist incidents. These children may need extra support and attention.
“Watching, reading, or examining the news together is the best way to gauge a child’s reaction and to help a child or teen deal with the information”, according to Robin F. Goodman, Ph.D. , a clinical psychologist specializing in bereavement issues. “In discussing what is viewed or heard when together, parents and professionals become informed about how the children processed the material and how they feel about it.”
Continue reading on Examiner.com: Osama bin Laden killed: Talking to kids about terrorism and war – Providence Children’s Health | Examiner.com http://www.examiner.com/children-s-health-in-providence/osama-bin-laden-killed-talking-to-kids-about-terrorism-and-war#ixzz1LCC0HGuk