Archive for March, 2010

Giveaway: free season of toddler soccer

Sunday, March 28th, 2010

This week, a lucky SouthernMamas subscriber will win a free session of celtic-soccer-logo.jpgSavannah Celtic’s  Early Goals Spring soccer program, which caters to players ages 3-4.

The toddler soccer session runs the week of April 12 through the week of May 17 . Normally, registration costs $50. But you can win a free soccer program for your toddler.  Check out the rules below to enter to win:

  • To enter to win, just share a photo of your child doing anything that resembles a sport on the SouthernMamas Facebook Fan Page and have a chance to win.  Be sure to become a fan while you are there! Entry period closes 9 pm Thurs April. 1. We’ll pick a name at random and announce the winner Fri. April 2.
  • You have to be a SouthernMamas subscriber to participate. Subscribing is free. Click here to subscribe. .  
  • The $50 registration fee includes a 6 week program, practice t-shirt, end of the season finale with a medal and certificate.

    Sessions will be held at the Salvation Army fields on the corner of Washington and Bee Rd. (3000 Bee Rd). The Wilmington Island session will be held at Brooks field on Concord Rd. All practices are approx. 30-40 minutes.

    Savannah Celtic already offers programs for older children. But also has a this fun, action-packed toddler program for players ages 3-4. There are no games. Instead, coaches work on simple motor skills and ball familiarity.

    Enter to win even if you already registered your child. If you win,  Savannah Celtic will give you a refund and your tot will play for free.

    Early Goal players will attend one practice session a week. Chose one of the following sessions:

    Monday 3 PM @ Wilmington Island
    4/12, 4/19, 4/26, 5/3, 5/10, 5/17

    Tuesdays 9:30 AM @ Salvation Army
    4/13, 4/20, 4/27, 5/4, 5/11, 5/18

    Tuesdays 5:30 PM @ Salvation Army
    4/13, 4/20, 4/27, 5/4, 5/11, 5/18

    Thursdays 5:30 PM @ Salvation Army
    4/15, 4/22, 4/29, 5/6, 5/13, 5/20

    To register your toddler for Early Goals, contact Michell Laing  laing2110@gmail.com , call 912.495.9996
    or click here.

    Ask the Expert: How to consign your children’s gently-used, upscale clothing

    Sunday, March 28th, 2010

    la-dee-da2(This is the first Ask the Expert ad. Ask The Expert is a new advertising option with SouthernMamas. For more info, email anne@southernmamas.com)

    Q & A with Julie Lanham, owner of “La Dee Da” is an upscale children’s consignment boutique located in the heart of Rincon, Georgia.

    What are the benefits of consigning my children’s outgrown items?
    Recycling your children’s clothing is good for the planet. Clean out your children’s closets — and earn money too!
    Buy what you need by selling items you need no longer use. No shipping costs or waiting for things by mail. We organize, advertise, and sell for you.

    Pay less for high quality items; stretch your clothing budget. It’s much easier on you than is the hassle of having another yard sale! Recoup some of the cost you’ve invested in your children. Help those in need! You may donate your unsold items to local charities. Choose to receive your earnings as store credit and save even more on purchases

    What’s the average amount consigners make when they consign their items with you?
    What a consignor earns may vary. Items that are higher end brands, in excellent condition and in current style sell faster, better and earn more money than those that are not. Consignors, depending on the quantity and quality of the items consigned, can earn a couple of hundred dollars per 90 day agreement.

    How do I know what items are appropriate for consignment?
    Each consignment shop sets its own acceptance terms, however, the trend in accepting children’s apparel and gear is that all items are in excellent and working condition free of flaws/wrinkles/stains. Items should be in current style and only used a couple years and are not in or have been in a recall status. In reference to what items are accepted varies from shop to shop. Call the shops that you are interested in consigning with and they will tell you exactly what they will or will not accept.

    Are there any key types of children’s clothing that sell better than others?

    Most shops carry a variety of clothing to suit the needs and tastes of today’s diverse mom’s and grand mom’s. Smocked apparel is an excellent seller and known for its classic style. Cottons, linens and light weight fabrics sell well in the spring and summer while denim and heavier knits sell well in the fall and winter seasons.

     What are the major do’s and don’t’s when consigning children’s clothing?
    DO check with your consignment shops to confirm what they accept as well as their terms prior to your initial drop off. This avoids inconvenience and helps you to decide what to consign

    DO make sure that your items are in excellent condition, in season and in working order

    DO read your consignment agreement thoroughly. DO make sure to choose a shop that is clean, organized and treats your items with care and respect.

    DO NOT become disappointed when a shop does not take all of your items. The more selective a shop owner is about their inventory, the better your earning potential.

    DO NOT consign items that are outdated or flawed

    DO NOT consign your items in a shop that is obviously disorganized or less than clean. This leads to greater opportunity for loss and diminishes earning potential

    Please share an insider’s tip that the average person doesn’t know
    Most shops have frequent markdowns in order to recycle the daily inventory that streams in. Call shops in advance to ask when and what their sales are.

    Any other questions you want to answer for consumers?
    Consignment selling and shopping is becoming a popular trend amongst women regardless of social or economic gradients. Many shops carry retail and custom made merchandise in addition to consignments in an effort to meet the many needs of their clientele.

     La Dee Da upscale children’s consignment boutique , 912-295-5470. Tues- Fri 9:30am – 5:30pm and Saturday 10 am – 3:30 pm. Proud retailers of Mudpie, Petit Ami, Rileyroo’s, Jewelry by Lorena and The Fizzy Baker.
    Hwy 21 North, Rincon. Located in Burns Station next to the Bank of America and across from The Curiosity Shoppe

    Kids “Dream Big” at Savannah Music Festival’s Roger Day Concert

    Sunday, March 28th, 2010

    rogerday2003If you want to land on Mars…Dream Big!
    Or be a rock ‘n’ roller superstar…Dream Big!
    Or find the cure to a rare disease…Dream Big!
    Or learn to dance like a chimpanzee…Dream Big
    !

    So sang children’s musician Roger Day at his fun and energtic Saturday concert in Savannah. Roger Day had tots dancing , jumping, doing the limbo, pretending to be yaks while climbing Mt. Everest, counting in Spanish, crooning an ode to a roly-poly and competing to be the world’s slowest turtles. The performance was one of the best kids’ shows this SouthernMama has ever attended in Savannah. A huge thank you to the Savannah Music Festival for bringing such a fabulous children’s performer our way!

    To learn more about Roger Day and his music, click here.

    Second winner Georgia State Park Lodge stay giveaway

    Thursday, March 25th, 2010

    georgia-state-park-lodges-logo1Heidi Kain is the second of two winners in this week’s SouthernMamas giveaway: a two-night stay at one of five Georgia State Parks Lodges.

    Thanks to everyone who shared your photos of your family’s favorite outdoor spring activity on the SouthernMamas Facebook Fan Page .

    Heidi wins a two-night stay at choice of five state park lodges including: Amicalola Falls State Park & Lodge, Dawsonville, Ga., Red Top Mountain State Park & Lodge in Cartersville, Ga., Unicoi State Park & Lodge in Helen, Ga., George T. Bagby State Park & Lodge in Fort Gaines, Ga. or Little Ocmulgee State Park & Lodge in McRae, Ga.

    Brainy Roger Day Children’s Concert in Savannah this weekend

    Wednesday, March 24th, 2010

    rogerday2002Chances are Roger Day is the only children’s musician who has written a song that tells kids what to eat to strengthen their brain.

    Blueberries are what you chew
    If you want to elevate your IQ
    Folic acid in whole wheat in bread
    Now that’s a smart thing to feed your head

    “Brain Food – Eat it Up” is one of the many smart tunes on his new album, “Why Does Gray Matter? And Other Brainy Songs for Kids.” Another highlight is the tune “Left Brain/Right Brain,” in which the left brain (logical) is a string quartet and the right brain (creative) is a Clash-inspired punk rock band.

    MY RIGHT BRAIN WANTS TO ROCK THE HOUSE
    MY RIGHT BRAIN WANTS TO DRAW AND ILLUSTRATE
    My left brain follows the directions
    It always starts at “a” goes to “z”
    My left brain loves to do my taxes
    It fills out every form on Schedule C

    Day writes and performs interactive music that encourages children to sing and jump along. The two-time winner of a Parents’ Choice Gold Award will perform songs from the album in his family show, “Shake Up Your Brain!,” at 12:30 PM Sat. March 27 at the Charles H. Morris Center in Trustees Garden as part of the Savannah Music Festival. Tickets are $10 adults 18 and older, $5 age 6 and older, under 6 free.  Buy tickets by clicking here.

    If last Saturday’s Savannah Music Festival children’s concert The Amazing Musical Rescue with RJ & The Upbeats is any indication, the Roger Day concert is sure to be a fun time where kids can be themselves. The performers and Savannah Music Festival ushers couldn’t have been more patient and relaxed when it came to kids – aka my 1-year-old – who couldn’t sit still or stop blaring the show-provided kazoo. The Savannah Music Festival deserves a round of applause for including family, kid-friendly shows in the series. What better way to show gratitude and support than by attending this Saturday’s Roger Day concert.

    Preschools in the Savannah/Wilmington Island/Richmond Hill area

    Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010

    Among the top most common requests we receive at SouthernMamas is for local preschool recommendations.  So we have created a special SouthernMamas Preschool Page. Click here to access the page.

    Email any suggestions for preschools to be included to anne@southernmamas.com.

    Autism/Asperger’s Resources and Support Groups in Savannah

    Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010

    autism-ribbon1Among the top most common questions we receive at SouthernMamas are “Are there any local support groups for parents with a child who has autism? and “Are there any local resources for children with autism?”  The answers to both is “Absolutely!”

    Such questions usually come from parents who have a child recently diagnosed with autism or Asperger’s, a high-functioning form of autism.

    So we have created a special SouthernMamas Autism/Asperger’s Resource Page. Click here to read it and feel free to make suggestions. Email suggested additions to anne@southernmamas.com.

    Kindergarten Orientation for Savannah-Chatham Public Schools held Thurs. March 25

    Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010

    hand-holdingYou can’t believe your baby will be entering kindergarten next fall.

    And it’s already time to get ready. The Savannah Chatham County Public School System Kindergarten Orientation is this week.

    SCCPSS Kindergarten Orientation Kindergarten orientation will be held in all schools throughout SCCPSS on Thursday, 9:30-10:30 AM March 25. Parents and guardians of children who will attend kindergarten next school year are encouraged to attend the orientation at the school their child will be attending in August 2010.

    For more information, contact the elementary school site your child will be attending, or call 395-5635 or click here.

    Thanks to SouthernMamas reader extraordinaire Kari Hunter for this info.

    Savannah art classes for Pre-K/toddlers and elementary-aged children

    Monday, March 22nd, 2010
    Artist Carrie Christian

    Artist Carrie Christian

    Beginning Sat. April 10, Savannah artist Carrie Christian will host weekend creative art classes at her studio.

    Classes for Pre-K/toddler aged children (2-5), run 10:30-11:30 AM. Younger siblings are welcome as long as accompanied by a parent.

    Classes for Elementary aged children (6-10), run 1-2 PM.

    Carrie’s studio is located at 212 E. 37th St., directly behind Bella Mia (bridal shop), at the corner of 37th and Abercorn Streets. Classes are $9 per child and include all supplies.

    Carrie Christian's studio

    Carrie Christian's studio

    Classes are pay as you go, but a conformation email or call would be greatly appreciated in regards to space and supply availability. Carrie Christian, T:912.323.0123
    Email: carrieachristian@hotmail.com

    carrrie-christian-2Carrie Christian received her MFA in Painting and her BFA in Illustration from the Savannah College of Art and Design. Her works have been exhibited nationally and internationally, and are included among the collections of both the Mobile Museum of Art and the Ogden Museum.

    She’s also experienced in Savannah Arts Academy portfolio preparation.

    For more information, parent references, and pricing, please contact: Carrie Christian, T:912.323.0123
    Email: carrieachristian@hotmail.com

    Chef Jamie Oliver’s wish: Teach every child about food

    Monday, March 22nd, 2010

    Can anyone pry chicken nuggets from school lunch menues? Maybe Chef Jamie Oliver, who successfully reformed the school meal system in the United Kingdom.

    In the UK, Oliver spearheaded a healthy school lunch campaign that persuaded the government there to allocate more than $400 million for the lunches.  Can he do it here with the new TV series “Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution?

    Oliver will be on CNN’s Larry King Live at 9 PM Thurs. March 25

    Giveaway: Two-night stay at a Georgia State Park Lodge

    Saturday, March 20th, 2010
    Georgia State Park Lodges

    Georgia State Park Lodges

    Welcome to week No. 2 of the great Spring Break Escape giveaway: two nights at one of five Georgia State Parks Lodges.

    SouthernMamas reader Carla Reed won two nights at a lodge of her choice last week. This week could be your turn. Just share a photo of your family’s favorite outdoor spring activity on the SouthernMamas Facebook Fan Page and have a chance to win a two-night stay at choice of five state park lodges including: Amicalola Falls State Park & Lodge, Dawsonville, Ga., Red Top Mountain State Park & Lodge in Cartersville, Ga., Unicoi State Park & Lodge in Helen, Ga., George T. Bagby State Park & Lodge in Fort Gaines, Ga. or Little Ocmulgee State Park & Lodge in McRae, Ga.

    One winner will be chosen at the end of this week (March 26). To win, just visit the SouthernMamas Facebook Fan page and post a photo of you, your kids or your family doing something fun outside. We’ll pick two winners and announce them here.

    Spring Break is a great time for families to get outdoors as part of a healthy, active lifestyle. Georgia State Parks & Lodges offer a variety of comfortable hotel-style lodge rooms at affordable prices with their new “Spring Lodge-ical” rates starting at $69 per night. Or, simply head out for the day, parking fees are just $5 per day and there are tons of recreational offerings for the entire family, from hiking and biking trails, to canoeing, kayaking and golf, there is an activity to fit every lifestyle.

    Best of all you can enjoy the tranquility of the great outdoors in style with a comfortable bed and hotel-style amenities. One winner will be chosen per week to win a two-night stay at choice of five state park lodges including: Amicalola Falls State Park & Lodge, Dawsonville, Ga., Red Top Mountain State Park & Lodge in Cartersville, Ga., Unicoi State Park & Lodge in Helen, Ga., George T. Bagby State Park & Lodge in Fort Gaines, Ga. And Little Ocmulgee State Park & Lodge in McRae, Ga. For Spring Break ideas that don’t break the bank, visit  www.galodges.com or www.GeorgiaStateParks.org.

    Amicalola Falls State Park Lodge

    Amicalola Falls State Park Lodge

    Participating Georgia State Park Lodges include:

    • Amicalola Falls State Park & Lodge, Dawsonville, Ga.: Only one and a half hours north of Atlanta, The Lodge at Amicalola Falls is a stunning 57-room hideaway, complete with a window-lined restaurant. Whether you want to visit the famous 729-foot cascading falls, go trout fishing or hike the park’s 12 miles of trails through towering forests, there is plenty to discover at Amicalola Falls. Amicalola Falls is one of Georgia’s most popular state parks. 

      amicalola-falls-state-park-lodge-interior

      Amicalola Falls State Park Lodge

    •  Red Top Mountain State Park & Lodge in Cartersville, Ga.: Just north of Atlanta are the sandy beaches of Lake Allatoona and the pine-scented nature trails of Red Top Mountain. At the Lodge at Red Top Mountain, you can choose one of the campsites, a secluded cottage with lakeshore views or a peaceful lodge room. Guests can enjoy 12 miles of hiking trails and water sport galore on Lake Alatoona Including boating, fishing, skiing and swimming. There’s also a miniature golf course.

     

    •  
      Unicoi State Park Lodge

      Unicoi State Park Lodge

      Unicoi State Park & Lodge in Helen, Ga.: In the midst of the Chattahoochee National Forest, located just two miles from the Alpine Village of Helen, the Lodge at Unicoi State Park is a beautiful setting for all of your family’s needs. Guests can enjoy the park’s 12 miles of nature and hiking trails, lake and trout stream fishing, four lighted tennis courts, softball and volleyball area, picnic facilities, world class mountain bike trail and year-round schedule of activities.

    •  
    • George T. Bagby State Park & Lodge, Fort Gaines, Ga.: Head to Southwest Georgia for the pristine forests, championship golf and scenic dining. The Lodge at George T. Bagby is the perfect retreat, whether you choose a room at the lodge or a cottage in the woods. Guests can enjoy plenty of activities on beautiful Lake Walter George, from boat rentals and full-service marina to swimming, fishing, beach volleyball and tennis.

    .

  • Little Ocmulgee State Park & Lodge in McRae, Ga.: You can spend your days enjoying golf, tennis, hiking, swimming, boating or fishing at Ocmulgee’s state park and 265-acre lake. At the Lodge at Little Ocmulgee in south central Georgia, you camp out among the trees, choose a cottage or stay at the 60-room lodge. The lodge overlooks the park’s Wallace Adams Golf Course. Located near McRae, the 1,265 acres of high sandhills and pine forests at this middle Georgia park provide a beautiful setting for family getaways.
  • First winner of ongoing Georgia State Park Lodge stay giveaway

    Thursday, March 18th, 2010

    georgia-state-park-lodges-logo1Carla Reed is the first of two winners in the current SouthernMamas giveaway: a family vacation at one of five Georgia State Parks Lodges.

    Thanks for sharing your photos of your family’s favorite outdoor spring activity on the SouthernMamas Facebook Fan Page . You still have a chance to win a family vacation at one of five Georgia State Parks Lodges because we’ll be picking a SECOND WINNER at the end of next week (March 26).

    Two SouthernMamas readers will win a two-night stay at choice of five state park lodges including: Amicalola Falls State Park & Lodge, Dawsonville, Ga., Red Top Mountain State Park & Lodge in Cartersville, Ga., Unicoi State Park & Lodge in Helen, Ga., George T. Bagby State Park & Lodge in Fort Gaines, Ga. or Little Ocmulgee State Park & Lodge in McRae, Ga.

    To win, just visit the SouthernMamas Facebook Fan page and post a photo of you, your kids or your family doing something fun outside. We’ll pick a second winner and announce her here next week.

    New parents & life insurance: Make sure you buy only what you need

    Wednesday, March 17th, 2010

    marsha-woelber-headshotBelow is a guest post by Marsha Woelber, a Partner at Independent Investment Services, LLC/Securities Offered through LPL Financial, Member FINRA/SIPC.

    Marsha does occasional posts on SouthernMamas about  becoming financially savvy.  To read her previous posts, click here.

    Parents-to-be have many exciting decisions to make in preparation for their baby: nursery decor, furniture, registry, baby names and ….life insurance. Insurance confuses most new parents; the terminology, numbers, and flurry of adjectives leave them baffled, even after they purchase a life policy. Below I’ve attempted to give you a basic understanding of why you need insurance, what kinds you can buy, and what to watch out for.

    Q: Why do I need life insurance?
    A: Life insurance protects the family in the event of death of a key money-earner. Generally, you need one policy for each parent, regardless of whether both parents are working. The premature death of a stay at home Mom can be just as financially devastating as the death of a working father: if the Mom dies, the costs of full-time child care factors into the equation. Life insurance gets more expensive as we age – the idea is to buy your policy when you are young, and “lock-in” cheaper premiums.

    Q: How much life insurance coverage do I need?
    A: Start here: 5-10x salary + mortgage + other major debts + college tuition for kids. Each situation is unique; make sure you and your financial advisor are thoughtful about this number.

    Q: How do I decide what type of insurance to get?
    A: This is where it gets tricky. Generally, there are two types of insurance: Term and Whole.
    Term insurance works like auto or homeowners coverage: If you die while the policy is active (the ‘term’), the beneficiary gets the amount for which you’re insured. Common policies provide coverage for 10-30 years. Term is useful where the need for life insurance is temporary – like until your mortgage is paid off or your children finish college. This makes sense for most young families because it covers a set period, with affordable premiums. Your term policy can carry the option to convert to a whole life policy, a wise idea for those who want lifelong coverage.
    Whole insurance provides a guaranteed death benefit for a guaranteed period of time. The policy’s life is intended to be longer than the lifetime of the insured. Premiums for this type of insurance are higher.

    Q: I have a life policy through work, do I need more?

    To read the answer to that question and the rest of this guest post in its entirety, click here.
     
    Please email/call with questions: Marsha Woelber; marsha@iissav.com, 912-650-2852.

    Marsha Woelber is a Partner at Independent Investment Services, LLC/Securities Offered through LPL Financial, Member FINRA/SIPC. She can be reached @ marsha@iissav.com or 912-650-2852.
    The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.

    Fast-food, junk food in Savannah elementary schools

    Tuesday, March 16th, 2010

    fast-foodKrispy Kreme school fund raisers. School spirit night with Pizza Hut. Elementary school carts that hawk Snickers to first graders.

    All done in the name of raising money for budget-strapped schools.

    The school system has the difficult task of fitting school meals into caloric and fat-content guidelines, but also making those meals appeal to kids. All with a limited budget of a little more than $1 per plate.

    Yet, individual elementary schools can hold a Little Caesars School Spirit Night fund raiser or sell snacks, no matter how high the fat and caloric content, to raise money.

    What’s your take on fast-food partnerships in elementary schools? And school snack carts that sell candy to students? My Sunday newspaper column on the topic has generated a slew of hate mail from folks who see nothing wrong with elementary schools endorsing fast food. “Don’t blame the obesity problem on fast-food” one reader wrote. So getting kids hooked on eating a school-endorsed meal of nuggets and fries at an early age doesn’t have any effect on the obesity problem? Seriously?

    There have to be better ways to raise money. St. Andrew’s, a fast-food free school on Wilmington Island, hosted a successful school benefit last year that was the opposite of fast-food fundraiser: a slow foods dinner with local (non-fast food) restaurants to raise money for an outdoor classroom that will be a place for gardening and ecology. The benefit featured foods by Brighter Day Natural Foods Market, Cha Bella, Local 11 Ten, The Sentient Bean and Thrive.

    Schools have been successful in reducing or eliminating soft drinks from cafeterias: Can’t they do the same with fast-food?

    Giveaway: Ultimate Spring Break Escape, a two-night stay at a Georgia State Lodge

    Sunday, March 14th, 2010

    georgia-state-park-lodges-logoSpring is the perfect time to get the family off the couch and enjoying quality time in the great outdoors.

    What could be better than spending time at our Georgia State Parks & Lodges?

    Share a photo of your family’s favorite outdoor spring activity on the SouthernMamas Facebook Fan Page and have a chance to win a family vacation at one of five Georgia State Parks Lodges.

    Two SouthernMamas readers will win a two-night stay at choice of five state park lodges including: Amicalola Falls State Park & Lodge, Dawsonville, Ga., Red Top Mountain State Park & Lodge in Cartersville, Ga., Unicoi State Park & Lodge in Helen, Ga., George T. Bagby State Park & Lodge in Fort Gaines, Ga. or Little Ocmulgee State Park & Lodge in McRae, Ga.

    One winner will be chosen at the end of this week (March 19) and a second winner at the end of next week (March 26). To win, just visit the SouthernMamas Facebook Fan page and post a photo of you, your kids or your family doing something fun outside. We’ll pick two winners and announce them here.

    Spring Break is a great time for families to get outdoors as part of a healthy, active lifestyle. Georgia State Parks & Lodges offer a variety of comfortable hotel-style lodge rooms at affordable prices with their new “Spring Lodge-ical” rates starting at $69 per night. Or, simply head out for the day, parking fees are just $5 per day and there are tons of recreational offerings for the entire family, from hiking and biking trails, to canoeing, kayaking and golf, there is an activity to fit every lifestyle.

    Best of all you can enjoy the tranquility of the great outdoors in style with a comfortable bed and hotel-style amenities. One winner will be chosen per week to win a two-night stay at choice of five state park lodges including: Amicalola Falls State Park & Lodge, Dawsonville, Ga., Red Top Mountain State Park & Lodge in Cartersville, Ga., Unicoi State Park & Lodge in Helen, Ga., George T. Bagby State Park & Lodge in Fort Gaines, Ga. And Little Ocmulgee State Park & Lodge in McRae, Ga. For Spring Break ideas that don’t break the bank, visit, www.galodges.com or www.GeorgiaStateParks.org.

    Participating Georgia State Park Lodges include:

    • Amicalola Falls State Park & Lodge, Dawsonville, Ga.: Only one and a half hours north of Atlanta, The Lodge at Amicalola Falls is a stunning 57-room hideaway, complete with a window-lined restaurant. Whether you want to visit the famous 729-foot cascading falls, go trout fishing or hike the park’s 12 miles of trails through towering forests, there is plenty to discover at Amicalola Falls. Amicalola Falls is one of Georgia’s most popular state parks.

     

    • Red Top Mountain State Park & Lodge in Cartersville, Ga.: Just north of Atlanta are the sandy beaches of Lake Allatoona and the pine-scented nature trails of Red Top Mountain. At the Lodge at Red Top Mountain, you can choose one of the campsites, a secluded cottage with lakeshore views or a peaceful lodge room. Guests can enjoy 12 miles of hiking trails and water sport galore on Lake Alatoona Including boating, fishing, skiing and swimming. There’s also a miniature golf course.

     

    • Unicoi State Park & Lodge in Helen, Ga.: In the midst of the Chattahoochee National Forest, located just two miles from the Alpine Village of Helen, the Lodge at Unicoi State Park is a beautiful setting for all of your family’s needs. Guests can enjoy the park’s 12 miles of nature and hiking trails, lake and trout stream fishing, four lighted tennis courts, softball and volleyball area, picnic facilities, world class mountain bike trail and year-round schedule of activities.

     

    • George T. Bagby State Park & Lodge, Fort Gaines, Ga.: Head to Southwest Georgia for the pristine forests, championship golf and scenic dining. The Lodge at George T. Bagby is the perfect retreat, whether you choose a room at the lodge or a cottage in the woods. Guests can enjoy plenty of activities on beautiful Lake Walter George, from boat rentals and full-service marina to swimming, fishing, beach volleyball and tennis.

     

    • Little Ocmulgee State Park & Lodge in McRae, Ga.: You can spend your days enjoying golf, tennis, hiking, swimming, boating or fishing at Ocmulgee’s state park and 265-acre lake. At the Lodge at Little Ocmulgee in south central Georgia, you camp out among the trees, choose a cottage or stay at the 60-room lodge. The lodge overlooks the park’s Wallace Adams Golf Course. Located near McRae, the 1,265 acres of high sandhills and pine forests at this middle Georgia park provide a beautiful setting for family getaways.

    Tickle Bellies giveaway winner

    Saturday, March 13th, 2010

    tickle-belliesSouthernMamas reader Ginger Willoughby wins a Tickle Bellies personalized bookmark of her choice  and a variety pack of personalized labels of her choice. Congratulations, Ginger!

    Tickle Bellies is a fun and whimsical stationery company that includes birth announcements, stickers, notepads, labels, luggage tags, invitations and bookmarks.

    Tickle Bellies also now has kids’ melamine plates and personalized placemats! See them by clicking here.

    Baby sling safety debate (Savannah parenting news)

    Friday, March 12th, 2010

    baby-slingThe safety of baby slings is in question as the government warns that some slings can be dangerous, even deadly for their little ones.

    The Consumer Product Safety Commission said it has investigated at least 13 deaths associated with sling-style infant carriers over the last 20 years, including three deaths last year. One other case involving a fatality is still being investigated. Twelve of the deaths involved babies younger than four months of age, the agency said.

    However, supporters of baby slings emphasize that the warning is for “bag slings” that are mass produced and sold under names like Infantino. The warning does not include ring slings and pouch slings that you can safely carry your children in.

    For info on safe slings, click here

    The commission is advising parents and caregivers to be cautious when using infant slings for babies younger than four months. It said that many of the babies who died in slings were a low birth weight twin, were born prematurely, or had a cold.

    In its warning, CPSC said that slings can pose a suffocation hazard in two different ways.

    –A sling’s fabric can press against a baby’s nose and mouth, blocking the baby’s breathing and suffocating a baby within a minute or two, the agency said.

    –The other scenario involves slings where the baby is cradled in a curved or “C-like” position, nestling the baby below mom’s chest or near her belly. That curved position can cause a baby who doesn’t have strong neck control to flop its head forward, chin-to-chest, restricting the infant’s ability to breathe. “The baby will not be able to cry for help and can slowly suffocate,” warned the commission.

    FREE Lactation Class at Just for Baby & More (Savannah breast feeding class)

    Friday, March 12th, 2010

    just-for-baby-new-ad-addressThere are many things to learn about as you prepare for your new baby’s arrival. If you are planning to nurse or trying to nurse your baby – here’s a FREE lactation class that is a great way to get ready.

    Just For Baby & More @ 7701 Waters Ave will be hosting the free class for moms-to-be to gather information about nursing 6:30-8 PM Tues. March 23. Cate Glyn-Jones, a lactation consultant from Candler Hospital, will be teaching the class. Refreshments will be provided.

    The first 15 registrants will receive a $15 gift card to the store. Please call (912) 355-4455 or email casey@justforbaby.net to register.

    FREE Lactation Class, 6:30-8 PM Tues. March 23 @ Just For Baby & More, 7701 Waters Ave.

    Winners of tickets to Savannah Music Festival children’s concerts

    Thursday, March 11th, 2010

    rogerday2001This week, SouthernMamas gave away FREE tickets to the the Savannah Music Festival children’s concerts.

    Winners of  tickets to Shake up Your Brain with Roger Day and free copies of Roger Day’s new CD “Why does Gray Matter?” are:
    Silvia Straub
    Kasey Berman
    Monica Patel
    Yasmiene Shemdin

    Winners of tickets to The Amazing Musical Rescue with RJ & The Upbeats are:
    Brandi Zetrouer
    Eliza Brooks
    Gena Cox
    Dusti Smith

    Congratulations! For info on the concerts, click here.

    The Wiggles live-concert movie comes to Savannah

    Thursday, March 11th, 2010

    wiggles-movie-in-savannahThe movie “The Wiggles Big Big Show in the Round” is coming to Savannah for four days in March at the Carmike Wynnsong Theatre 11

    This circus-inspired Wiggly live concert movie has acrobats, gymnasts, dancers, trapeze artists and a ringmaster. Of course, the show also includes Sam, Jeff, Anthony and Murray and the world famous Wiggly dancers, as well as Wiggly friends Wags the Dog, Dorothy the Dinosaur, Henry the Octopus and Captain Feathersword.

    Tickets are $10 each. Movie dates are March 20,21,27, & 28 2010. For more info, click here.

    Newly remade Ellis Square includes kid-friendly spray fountain, life-size chess set

    Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

    johnny-mercer-statue-savannahThe newly remade Ellis Square in downtown Savannah is open.

    Ellis Square – one of Gen. James Oglethorpe’s original six squares – is now restored to public use and features an ellipses interior, interactive spray fountain, life-sized chess board, movable furniture and public restrooms.

    It is the most environmentally friendly of Savannah’s squares, with water-efficient plants, energy-efficient lighting and HVAC system in the glass-walled visitors center, and a green roof on the public bathrooms to help reduce runoff.

    The new kid-friendly interactive spray fountains at Ellis Square and the new spray fountains at Forsyth Park mean lots of cool options this summer!

    Save Bamboo Farm & Coastal Gardens from being closed down

    Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

    bamboo-farm-festivalBamboo Farm & Coastal Gardens is in danger of being closed down due to state budget cuts.

    That’s right. The beloved Chatham County spot where you take the kids every year for u-pick blackberries and strawberries; the place that hosts such popular annual family events as Sunday Supper in the Strawberry Patch, Fall and Spring festivals; the place kids go for hayrides, field trips and more – may close down.

    Because of the state’s potential $1.1 billion shortfall, the University System of Georgia Board of Regents is at risk of undergoing $300 million in proposed cuts include closing half of the state’s Cooperative Extension offices and eliminating its widely popular 4-H youth program.

    Locally, that would mean closing the Burton 4-H Center at Tybee Island, ending the Mommy and Me program at UGA’s Marine Education Center and Aquarium on Skidaway Island and closing down the Bamboo Farm.  

    The proposed Bamboo Farm closure would take away a truly precious local resource. Our area is already lacking in kid-friendly educational centers. Let’s do what we can to keep the Bamboo Farm and other local programs open.

    You can help save the Bamboo Farm and other local educational programs by  letting the Board know you disagree with these proposed closures. Do so by signing this petition

    You can also show your support by attending the Spring Festival at the Bamboo Farm & Coastal Gardens,  9 AM-4 PM Sat. March 20. Sponsored by the Friends of Coastal Gardens, this fundraising event includes educational lectures, activities for children, plant vendors, and arts and crafts vendors. Admission is free but there will be a $2 charge for parking. Some activities are free, while others have a small charge.

    Help bring a missing student home: Bryce Tarter Benefit Event

    Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

    AASU student Bryce Tarter, 19, missing since Jan. 31

    AASU student Bryce Tarter, 19, missing since Jan. 31

    As the search continues for a missing Armstrong Atlantic State student, the family of Bryce Tarter is looking to friends and supporters for help and prayers.

    The public is invited to a Bryce Tarter Benefit Event on noon-5 PM this Saturday March 13 at Armstrong Atlantic State University’s Sports Center. All proceeds from this kid-friendly benefit will go towards the campaign to bring Bryce home.

    The benefit will include pony rides, face painting, games, inflatable bouncy, raffle prizes, t-shirts, Bryceletts, food and more.

    If you would like to help, please email Megan at help@bringbrycehome.com or call 912.604.5829. Volunteers still needed.

    The 19-year-old Tarter was last seen around 5 AM Jan. 31, leaving the AASU campus. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is working on the case and Tarter’s family and friends have also launched massive search efforts.

    Tarter was driving a white 2000 Nissan Frontier with Maine license plate 9447QD. There are an Atlanta Braves and Atlanta Falcons stickers on the back window. If you have any information, you’re asked to call AASU Police at 912-344-3333 or the Center for Missing Persons at (910) 343-1131. For more info in the case, visit the Bring Bryce Home Web site by clicking here.

    Saturday Mommy & Me Aquarium Program for Working Parents

    Tuesday, March 9th, 2010

    aquarium-logoLocal moms who work outside the home often tell SouthernMamas they wish there were more weekend mommy-and-me programs.

    Wish granted.  A monthly mommy-and-me program for working parents will start @ UGA’s Marine Education Center and Aquarium soon. 

    The first Saturday Mommy and Me will be 10-10:45 AM  April 10.

    The educational programs for children between the ages of 1 and 4 include learning techniques that allow for the development of motor skills, understanding of different sizes, shapes, weights, and movements among a variety of marine animals native to Georgia waterways and the ability to identify the difference between fish, crabs, turtles, and invertebrates. The programs will include hands-on experiences with different animals, arts and crafts, a story time, and a game.

    Advanced Registration required. Maximum of 15 children. $6/child for non-season pass holders, $4/child for season pass holders.  UGA’s Marine Education Center and Aquarium is at 30 Ocean Science Circle, Skidaway Island.

    To register, call 912-598-2496, email fish@uga.edu.

    Savannah Children’s Photographer Offers a SouthernMamas Discount

    Sunday, March 7th, 2010

    britt-anderson-photography-spring-1Easy, breezy, beautiful.

    That’s your idea of a spring portrait session with your kids. Spring is the perfect time to have new portaits taken before the not so easy-breezy summer heat.

    One of our top local shooters, Savannah photographer Britt Anderson , makes kids portrait sessions click. Even better, Britt offers SouthernMamas a discount.

    Anyone who mentions Southernmamas.com when booking will receive a $50 print credit with any basic session, or an additional $100 print credit with any collection session booked before April 30th (Sessions must be completed prior to July 31st).

    britt-anderson-photography-spring-2A whiz with natural light, Britt takes advantage of the wonderful natural backdrops our area has to offer for relaxed shoot sites. She serves the Savannah, Rincon, Pooler, Richmond Hill areas, as well as Beaufort, Bluffton and Hilton Head Is. areas. 

    Britt playfully captures the natural connections between loved ones, the sweetness of a newborn, the energy of a child. She specializes in maternity to newborns, toddlers to teens.

    Chances are you’ll agree with Britt that while quality portraits are an investment, they are a valuable investment of memories for today, tomorrow and forever.

    To keep up to date on Britt’s regular photography specials, become a fan of Britt Anderson photography on Facebook here or visit her Web site

    Contact Britt via her Web site or email contact@brittandersonphotography.com.

    Coastal Gold Exchange opens in Savannah Mall

    Sunday, March 7th, 2010

    coastal-gold-exchange-logoThat gold necklace from a less than golden ex-beau has been collecting dust in your jewelry box for too long.

    At a new business in Savannah Mall – Coastal Gold Exchange - you can exchange  jewelry you never wear anymore for quick cash. Coastal Gold Exchange buys gold/silver/platinum jewelry items.

    Do you have a broken necklace, bracelet or missing earring? Coastal Gold Exchange buys those as well. They will buy any gold, silver or platinum jewelry, no matter the kind or condition.

    cge-savannah-kioskGold jewelry has become one of the more popular items on the market as of late, as the price of gold has increased and people are finding that they can turn their old and broken jewelry into jewelers and refineries for cash.

    Just be sure to do your homework and find out what that piece of gold is worth before you decide to sell.

    Coastal Gold Exchange is an alternative to the long-distance, mail-in cash for gold companies and pawn shops.

    To find out more about Coastal Gold Exchange, click here.

    Giveaway: 8 tickets to Savannah Music Festival children’s concerts

    Sunday, March 7th, 2010

    roger-dayWin a FREE ticket to the the Savannah Music Festival children’s concerts this week on SouthernMamas.

    Thanks to Savannah Music Festival, we’re giving away FOUR tickets to Shake up Your Brain with Roger Day to FOUR winners and FOUR tickets to The Amazing Musical Rescue with RJ & The Upbeats to FOUR Winners. Winners of the Roger Day tickets will also receive a free copy of Roger Day’s new CD “Why does Gray Matter?”

    rogerday200Here are the rules on how to win this month long contest.

  • To enter to win, tell us your favorite kids’ song or CD by commenting below this post (Just click on comments).  Also, please tell us your name. Or comment on the SouthernMamas Facebook page here. Please become a Facebook fan of SouthernMamas.
  • Entry period closes: Thurs. March 11. We’ll announce the winner here Fri. March 12.
  • You have to be a SouthernMamas subscriber to participate! Subscribing is free. Click here to do so. Click here to become a fan of SouthernMamas on Facebook.
  • THE AMAZING MUSICAL RESCUE: RJ & THE UPBEATS will be at 12:30 PM Sat. March 20 at CHARLES H. MORRIS CENTER
    Tickets: $10 adult 18 and older, $5 age 6 and older, under 6 are free. Buy tickets by clicking here.
    Open your imagination and enter the wonderful world of The UpBeats. Mischievous forces have sabotaged the creativity of music and it’s up to RJ & The UpBeats to save music.

    rogerdaySHAKE UP YOUR BRAIN: ROGER DAY, 12:30 PM Sat. March 27 at CHARLES H. MORRIS CENTER
    Tickets: $10 adult 18 and older, $5 age 6 and older, under 6 free.
    Two-time Parents’ Choice award-winning singer/songwriter Roger Day urges kids to reach their potential by using “body and brain, mind and muscle.” In this program for the entire family, he performs songs from his new album “Why Does Gray Matter? And Other Brainy Songs for Kids.” Buy tickets by clicking here.

    Stop proposed closures of Savannah’s kid-friendly resources

    Saturday, March 6th, 2010

    The Mommy and Me program Tuesdays and Thursdays @ UGA’s Marine Education Center and Aquarium on Skidaway Island is just one of the local educational programs at risk of being cut.

    Because of the state’s potential $1.1 billion shortfall, the University System of Georgia Board of Regents is at risk of undergoing severe cuts include closing half of the state’s Cooperative Extension offices and eliminating its widely popular 4-H youth program.

    This month, the University System of Georgia proposed $300 million in cuts to higher education, including 4,000 layoffs and dozens of program cutbacks. Locally, that would mean closing the Burton 4-H Center at Tybee Island and cutting other educational centers that provide invaluable information to thousands of area youth.

    You can help save our local education centers and keep the doors open at @ UGA’s Marine Education Center and Aquarium and other kid-friendly spots. Let the Board know you disagree with these proposed closures by signing this petition

    Coastal Kids Market consignment sale March 11-13

    Thursday, March 4th, 2010

    coastal-kids-logoThose of you who’ve shopped at Coastal Kids Market, a seasonal, upscale children’s consignment sale in Pooler just outside Savannah, already know the amazing deals you can find there when it comes to high-end, gently-used boutique & trunk show clothing.

    But did you know that Coastal Kids will accept CREDIT CARDS at this month’s upcoming spring sale March 11-13 @ The Shops at Godley Station, Pooler Parkway? No more dashing to the ATM or hitting your friend up for cash because you didn’t plan on finding so many quality brand bargains.

    Brands you can expect to come across at Coastal Kids Market include Hannah Kate, Orient Expressed, Chez Ami, Kelly’s Kids, Bailey Boys, Ragsland, Strasburg, Matilda Jane, Lilly Pulitzer, Hannah Andersson, Potato Saks, and lots of NEW L’amour shoes.

    Plus, the sale will be teeming with NEW overstocks from some local boutiques and designers.

    Eight local vendors will be at the sale including: Miles of Crafts, Stella and Dot, Arts-Anne-Crafts, Bella Reece, Touchstone Crystal, Kris’ Krinkles, Thirty-One and Babe Sak.

    Be sure to arrive early. Because the first 200 customers will receive goody bags filled with promotions and valuable coupons from 20-plus local businesses. So it pays to be first in line!

    More than 75 consignors are already registered, with room for more. Hurry, registration ends this Sat. March 6.

    Happy bargain-buying, SouthernMamas.

    SPRING 2010 Sale Dates:
    Thurs., March 11 6-8 PM
    Fri., March 12, 9 AM – 5 PM
    Sat., March 13, 9 AM– noon
    *Select items will be half price on Saturday

    Coastal Kids Market, March 11-13, The Shops at Godley Station, Pooler Parkway, Suite 202; 912.312.5800 or email contact@coastalkidsmarket.com

    Classic Kids clothing custom-made outfits perfect for Savannah spring

    Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

    classic-kids-clothing-1Get ready to swoon over Classic Kids clothing.

    Classic Kids is a locally-owned children’s clothing company made up of moms that have a passion for creating unique and captivating clothing for their children and yours.

    Each custom-made outfit is made from top quality fabrics with special attention to detail.

    Lucky girls will get decked out in wrap skirts in bright colors or sweet ribbon-top and pillow case dresses. For boys: madras shorts, personalized crab tees, and timeless preppy JonJons.

    Classic Kids specializes in classic and funky styles for both boys and girls.

    Designs range from time-honored standards to custom-made. CK will work with you to create your perfect outfit. Just drop CK a line at classickids@hargray.com.

    classic-kids-clothing-2Scheduling for CK home shows is under way though out the southeast.

    All home show guests will receive up to 20 percent off their home show order.

    All hosts will receive up to 50 percent off their home show order and a continuous 20-percent off for the remainder of the season.

    To see more examples of Classic Kids,  click here. Order online at the Classic Kids Web shop. Classic Clothes can also be found La Dee Da boutique in Rincon.

    Classic Kids, Classic Clothes for Everyday Kids!, www.ClassicKidsGA.com. Email classickids@hargray.com

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