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September 21, 2014

Editor's Blog

Let Public School Parents Grade the OK State Leadership

09/18/14

Let Public School Parents Grade the OK State Leadership

Maybe parents of public school children should be able to grade State School Superintendent Janet Baressi, the OK State Board of Education, Gov. Fallin and the OK Legislature on their work not  on behalf of Oklahoma public schools. Most parents would probably give them an F. If you want to look at the school grades, go here http://afreportcards.ok.gov. Tulsa parent Amanda Mansheim summed up many parents’ frustrations when she wrote on TulsaKids Facebook Page in reference to the newly released A-F Report Card: Hoover elementary moms were tired of this. They were told last Thursday that Hoover elementary would lose a kindergarten teacher, a half-time special ed position and a half-time enrichment position because of budget issues. The lost position would also mean...

Posted at 10:44 AM | Permalink | Comments

Apple Dumplings Taste Like Fall

09/17/14

Apple Dumplings Taste Like Fall

Most of my holidays revolve around food, so I’m celebrating National Apple Dumpling Day today with this super-simple recipe. It takes minutes to put together, just a few more minutes to cook, and you have a delicious dessert to share with your family. I made these last week, and they were a big hit. My husband re-heated them for breakfast. Be sure to spoon the juice from the dish over the tops of the dumplings when you serve them. They’re delicious with whipped cream or ice cream (what isn’t?).   Easy Apple Dumplings 2 large apples, peeled, cored, quartered 1 can Crescent Rolls 1/2 cup orange juice 1/2 cup sugar 1/2 tsp. cinnamon 1 stick butter DO NOT PREHEAT OVEN Grease a 9 x 9 inch casserole dish. Wrap each apple wedge in...

Posted at 08:46 AM | Permalink | Comments

Happy Anniversary, AmeriCorps!

09/12/14

Happy Anniversary, AmeriCorps!

President Obama and former President Bill Clinton are swearing in hundreds of new AmeriCorps volunteers today to mark the 20th anniversary of AmeriCorps, a program created by Clinton in 1993. National volunteerism is actually older than the 20th anniversary being celebrated today. Volunteers in Service to America (VISTA) was envisioned by former President John F. Kennedy in 1963, and founded by former President Lyndon Johnson in 1965 as a national service program to fight poverty in America. VISTA was incorporated into AmeriCorps in 1993. I have a soft spot in my heart for AmeriCorps because one of my daughters was an AmeriCorps VISTA in Austin, Texas. She worked for AVANCE, a non-profit that works with Hispanic moms with preschool children to promote literacy and school...

Posted at 10:04 AM | Permalink | Comments

Chocolate Fudge Zucchini Cake Is a Delicious Snack

09/03/14

Chocolate Fudge Zucchini Cake Is a Delicious Snack

At this time of year, you may have an abundance of zucchini, or you may just want another excuse to eat chocolate. Either way, this cake fits the bill. Zucchini may seem like a weird ingredient to put into cake, but it makes it very moist. It seems to be a hit with everyone who’s tasted it, so give it a try. Here’s the recipe: Chocolate Fudge Zucchini Cake Preheat oven to 350 degrees F Lightly grease an 8 x 8 inch pan Ingredients ½ cup whole wheat flour ½ cup unbleached white flour (if you want to use all whole wheat, that’s fine, too) 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 1 ¼ tsp. baking powder dash of salt 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted ½ cup brown sugar...

Posted at 04:15 PM | Permalink | Comments

I Hate to Say “I Told You So….”

08/29/14

I Hate to Say “I Told You So….”

Oklahoma’s No Child Left Behind (NCLB) waiver was yanked for not complying with the federal law.

Posted at 11:37 AM | Permalink | Comments

West Elm is Opening At Utica Square

08/27/14

West Elm is Opening At Utica Square

Many of you have been waiting for “our” West Elm to open in Tulsa ever since the paper went up on the windows of the former Pier One space at Utica Square, 21st & Utica. Well, the wait is over. West Elm officially opens on Thurs., Aug. 28 at 10 a.m., but you can get a sneak peek at the special Open House tonight from 6 – 8 p.m. During the presale, everything is 10 % off! If you haven’t been to a West Elm store, here’s the lowdown. I was already a West Elm fan, but I learned a lot on my personal store tour with Kendall Coleman, the store’s PR person from San Francisco. One thing that Kendall pointed out was that Tulsans are really proud of their community. Funny how most people pick up on that right away. West Elm likes to bring...

Posted at 12:20 PM | Permalink | Comments

A Week’s Worth of Back-to-School Breakfasts

08/12/14

A Week’s Worth of Back-to-School Breakfasts

I know, I know. It’s hard to come up with healthy breakfasts day after day. Not only are you trying to get everyone out the door in the morning in a timely fashion, you’re most likely fighting the more insidious issue of advertising. Sugary breakfast cereals being hawked to a captive audience of young viewers, grab-and-go bars decked out with healthy-looking labels, frozen waffles swimming in high fructose corn syrup! What’s a parent to do? Grow up. Be the adult. You may have to say “no” to that box of Froot Loops (which, by the way, I’ve noticed are now being sold to adults in a nostalgic commercial where the parents are playing video games and gulping down the box of sugar Froot Loops after the kids have gone to bed. Don’t be taken in....

Posted at 11:56 AM | Permalink | Comments

I’ve Been Hit by a Car and It Hurts

08/01/14

I’ve Been Hit by a Car and It Hurts

When I was in college, I was hit by a car going approximately 35 miles an hour as I was walking in a crosswalk back to my dorm for lunch. I’ll spare you the gruesome details, but let’s just say it took several months to recover from that accident. I spent a lot of my spring semester in pain. This week, as I was driving to work, I stopped at a red light on 21st at Cincinnati, facing west, right by Lee Elementary School. In fact, it’s the place where kids cross 21st Street coming and going from school. I was stopped. A car opposite me was stopped, and a car coming off of Cincinnati on my right, which had the green light, was turning onto 21st Street just as a car flew through the red light going east on 21st. This had to be a case of major distracted driving,...

Posted at 09:17 AM | Permalink | Comments

Oklahoma is Not OK for Kids

07/22/14

Oklahoma is Not OK for Kids

As the long-time editor of a parenting publication, my inbox is filled every day with statistics and information, both good and bad, about children and families. Today, I had an email from The Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy giving statistics on the welfare of children in Oklahoma. Sadly, our state is not so great if you’re a child. The information is contained in the 25th Edition of THE KIDS COUNT Data Book (kidscount.org), and was released by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. Every year, Kids Count looks at 16 key indicators in order to assess how well children are faring in each state. Areas that are covered include: Economic Well-Being, Health, Education and Family and Community. Oklahoma ranks 39th among 50 states. We dropped from 36th, so the state is not...

Posted at 08:54 AM | Permalink

What to Cook When the Kids Come Home

07/17/14

What to Cook When the Kids Come Home

My youngest daughter and her boyfriend were here last weekend for a short visit. We did the usual stuff, which made me appreciate Tulsa all the more -- the Friday Night Art Crawl, Monet exhibit at Philbrook, running at the river, followed by coffee on Cherry Street and a stroll through the Farmers Market. Since they’re typically not big meat-eaters, and at any given time, may be eschewing meat altogether, I pulled out the vegetarian recipes for the weekend. With all the fresh and inexpensive vegetables available in the summer, it’s easy to cook up something delicious. My daughter requested these veggie enchiladas – they’ve always been a big hit in our family – so I wanted to share the recipe. You can use more of the vegetables you like and less of...

Posted at 08:05 AM | Permalink | Comments

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About This Blog

Our editor-in-chief, Betty started working for TulsaKids when her youngest child was 3 years old. That daughter will be starting graduate school in the fall. Her son is now 27 and her middle daughter is 24. TulsaKids and her children literally grew up together (and she lived to tell about it)! Betty is an avid runner, cook (loves to eat) and coffee snob. She is an award-winning writer and most recently was honored with a Great Plains Journalism Award as Best Blogger of 2013. Last year, she wrote and illustrated her first children’s book, “May Finds Her Way” (2013 The RoadRunner Press). Watch for her every Tuesday on KTUL Channel 8’s Good Morning Oklahoma and Thursdays on KTUL’s Good Day Tulsa.

She enjoys getting reader feedback on articles, blogs or with suggestions for the magazine. Email her at editor@tulsakids.com

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