Tag Archives: events

Recap: Kindness Counts!

Photo of the week: Rachel Harris sent in this photo of her adorable little hippy!

This has been a chatty week over at SantaRosaMom.com!  I want to extend a huge welcome to all the new members who have signed up.  I’ve thoroughly enjoyed  chatting with all of you!  Here’s a recap of some of the discussions going on over at SantaRosaMom.com:

Quiz your husband!
At the beginning of the school year, kids bring home loads of papers to be filled out with everything from the name of their doctor, emergency contact, and their favorite things.  Typically it’s the mom who has to fill out all the answers to this huge packet of papers.  But we’re going to have a little bit of fun with it.  We’ve come up with 10 back-to-school questions for your hubby to answer.  Quiz him, and let us know how well he did!

Deep, dark mommy secrets
We all have them, those deep, dark mommy secrets.  But some of them would probably have kept us from having kids had we known them pre-family planning.  What are some of yours?

Giving up junk food for a year
I’m constantly on the lookout for ways to keep my family healthy.  So my attention was totally caught by the family who gave up all junk food for an entire year.  It was just supposed to be 100 days, but the challenge proved so beneficial they are keeping it up.  If you had to give up junk food for that long, what would you miss the most?

Mom sued for being a “bad mother”
Two adult children have decided to sue their mother for the years of torture they went through under her parenting.  But wait till you hear what they deem “bad mothering”…  By their definition, what are some of your parenting faults in raising your kids?

What you plant…
Good manners, responsibility, kindness….  They don’t just come naturally.  If we want these things for our children, we must be the ones to instill these virtues in them.  What are YOU doing today to make your child successful tomorrow?

Family Kindness Challenge
The best way to teach a child is through kindness.  How does the saying go?  You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar?  It’s so true.  So my challenge to all of you: Say one kind thing to your child every day, and be specific.  Read more to learn how to create more harmony in your household.

Lots of exciting things going on this Labor Day Weekend!  All weekend long is the Taste of Sonoma Wine Country Weekend.  Saturday there will be a Pancake Breakfast in Bodega Bay that the Bodega Fire Hall, and a Sand Sculpture Contest in Point Reyes at Drakes Beach.  In Jenner, the 3rd Annual Fry Your Head Chili Festival & BBQ promises a fun and tasty time for families.  And coming up in the week is the Fall/Back to School Just Between Friends Consignment Event.  The first day is dedicated to some special people (see if you qualify!), but the last three days of the event are for everyone.  Families with little ones will not want to miss this!  For more information on these events, be sure to check out the Events Calendar.

Have a wonderful and safe Labor Day Weekend, and I’ll see you on the forums!

Crissi Dillon

SantaRosaMom.com recap 8/18

The Taz and friends on their first day of school. Photo courtesy of the beautiful Claudine.

Hello all you moms and dads! Are you surviving school week? By now, almost all schools are in session. As one mom put it, “My vacation has finally started!” Whether you’re celebrating because the kids are back at school or missing your little crumbgrinder, there’s plenty of school related stuff and more going on at SantaRosaMom.com.

Be prepared for school
Goodbye lazy days, hello crazy-hectic days of the school year. The only sure way of avoiding the tailspin of carpools, sports, homework, signed papers, notes home, and what to pack for school lunch, you need a plan. Here are some of the things that have worked for me, and will also work for you if made a habit early on.

Backpack Charity Event
School supplies are expensive, right? Well for some students, the price of these supplies is downright overwhelming. Threads for Teens, the program created by 15 year old Allyson Ahlstrom, is accepting donations of supplies and money to give backpacks to teens from underprivileged homes. Read all about it and consider your own donation to this cause.
Note: If you’re still shopping for school supplies for your child, here is a list of supplies you should NOT be buying for them.

First Day of School Photos!
I’m looking for your photos! Did you get a photo of your child on their first day of school? Share them in our photo gallery! Upload your photo and tag them “school” to be included in our Back to School photo album. And be sure to check out some more photos of the first day in the Press Democrat photo gallery.

Calling all adorable toddlers!
Cupcake, the store for kid, baby, and maternity fashions, is looking for adorable kids to model their clothing for their fall season photo shoot. And they are holding a casting call to find the next Cupcake kids! If you have a child between 12 months and 8 years, read up on how to enter them. Who knows? Your child may be a star!

Being noticed
How many times have you felt totally invisible in a crowd of people? Little do we know, this might also be happening in our own household. With all the busy-ness that goes on throughout the day, it’s easy for us to not spend an ounce of quality time with our kids – or even give them an encouraging word.
What if we could change all that?

Upcoming Events
Lots of events are coming up that will be great fun or a valuable resource for your child. Whole Foods has several seminars on Gluten Free living, curbing headaches, and more. The Petaluma Library is in the midst of their library sale. The 3rd annual Treasure Hunt will be scavenging Petaluma this Saturday. And Just Between Friends (the consignment sale for young families) will be holding a seminar to teach how you can consign and make some serious cash. Check them out on our Events page.

Have a wonderful week, and I’ll see you in the forums!

Crissi Dillon

P.S. To be kept up to speed on SantaRosaMom.com news, sign up for our newsletter!

Worth WeeCycling Consignment Event

The world is turning green with environment. My favorite part of the sudden earth conscious tendencies? Consigning! This is when people sell their perfectly usable items that they no longer have a need for to other people who are in the market for such an item. It allows families to make a little cash, and it has brought coolness back to thrift shopping. And it’s great for the environment since less things are ending up in the landfill before their usefulness is used up.  There are consignment stores popping up all over the place. Sales to the public (like the Just Between Friends sale a couple weeks ago) are becoming more popular. And now, another event is coming down the pike.

Worth WeeCycling is holding their Fall/Winter Event on September 10th – 12th at the Santa Rosa Vet’s Building (across from the fairgrounds). The children and maternity consignment event is geared towards expecting and young families. It’s a wonderful way for cash-strapped families to make some money (and I understand there is still time to consign your items!), and it’s a great way for families to meet the needs of their growing household.

Best yet? Worth WeeCycling will be helping to raise funds for a very special little boy. 4 year old Nathan Wagner has been battling brain cancer since February. After brain surgery, radiation, and more surgery, he is now in the midst of a 6 month cycle of chemo. As you can imagine, the family has been placed under a large financial strain as they battle Nathan’s cancer together, paying out of pocket for expenses not covered by insurance. Worth WeeCycling is helping the Wagner family through consignment donations.

“The family would greatly appreciate any donations and they can be dropped off at Economy Plumbing – 1058 North Dutton Ave. Santa Rosa, CA 95401 between 7:30 and 4:00 weekdays until September 6th or at My Gym.”

For more information on this sale or how to contribute to Nathan Wagner’s needs, check out the detailed information in the forums at SantaRosaMom.com, or visit Worth WeeCycling’s website at www.worthweecycling.com.

Worth WeeCycling Fall/Winter Event:

Friday 7:00 – 9:00 pm
Pre-sale only for consignors and pre-registered first time parents, foster parents, and adoptive parents

Saturday 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Public Sale

10:30—11:00 am
50% off Pre-sale for consignors
11:00 am – 5:00 pm
Public – Half-price Sale

Just Between Friends

Raising a family is an expensive role. If you’ve ever complained about this, you have an ally in this single mom. From baby to college and beyond, the needs of our children are our biggest expense. Baby strollers, cribs, clothes, toys… It all adds up. I recently calculated just how much it would cost to raise both of my children, and came up with a total of almost $500,000 by the time they are 18! So yes, raising children can take a toll on our pocketbooks.

Daven Tackett and Shannon Wilburn understand this. 12 years ago, they and 17 other families gathered in Shannon’s living room to sell and buy used items at a fraction of the cost they would have spent had they bought them new. The families who gave items for Shannon and Daven to sell were given a large portion of the profit, and they had minimum work to do on their own as the ladies took care of the rest. Today, this small adventure has turned into over 100 franchises across the United States. And the size of these sales has graduated from being held in a small living room to thousands of items being sold in a packed warehouse size room, organized by type of item. Racks upon racks of clothes, rows of strollers and baby items, furniture, electronics…all the items you might need to help defray the costs of raising a child.

Jennifer and Matt Hundley of Petaluma saw the value of Just Between Friends upon their first visit to one of these events in Sacramento. They were extremely impressed by the concept of reusing perfectly good items between families instead of allowing them to taking up space in our landfills. The average profit from a consignor was $397. Eight families walked away with over $1500, and two families made over $2000. For families to make that kind of profit on things they had outgrown or no longer needed? It seemed a no-brainer. Jen and Matt felt compelled to make something like this available to their neighbors in Sonoma County. As members of the Petaluma Active 20-30 social/service organization, the transition into bringing together a community for an event like this was natural for them. It matched a lifestyle they were already accustomed to. So they started up the Northbay JBF franchise.

The Hundley’s first JBF event is this weekend, May 15th and 16th, at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds. Over 150 families are selling their used items at this sale. The most popular item, Matt told me, seemed to have a summertime theme. There are jogging strollers, outside toys, and plenty of warm weather clothes filling the racks. Beyond that, there is a whole rack dedicated to Halloween costumes, plenty of cribs and swings, clothes and shoes, games, books, movies, stuffed animals, maternity clothes, and so much more. Parents of all stages, from expecting to grandparents, thoroughly browsed the racks looking for that hidden jewel.

“The amount of interest in this concept has been surprising,” Jen told me. “And the volunteers have been amazing. I only have to give them minimal direction, and it’s obvious that they want to be here.”

They will continue holding these sales twice a year, the next one coming up this fall. To sign up and sell your own goods is as simple as visiting their website (www.jbfsale.com/northbay) and following the steps. From there you will receive a consignor number and be able to tag your items with a price. Consignors make about 60-65% back from their goods, and get a check within 2 weeks. And after the event they have the option of either picking up their unused items or allowing Matt and Jen to donate them with the rest of the unsold items. Their charity of choice is Our Kids Sake (www.ourkidssake.org), a foundation that benefits more than 1000 homeless children right here in Sonoma County.

“What we really want is to do some good for the county,” said Jen. “We want a way for families to be able to make money, and to save money. And we want to give back to those in need. The way I see it? It’s a win-win situation.”

Sat May15th, 9am – 8pm ($2 admission – proceeds benefit the Petaluma Active 20-30 social/service organization)
Sun May 16th, 9am – 2pm (free admission, plus almost everything is 50% off)
Sonoma County Fairgrounds, EC Kraft Building

Battling for Checkmate

In the world of ranks, files, and black and white pieces, chess is making a strong comeback. This was more than apparent at Strawberry School on May 1st where young players met for duel, a queen and her men as their weapons, for the 2nd Annual Countywide Chess Tournament. Hosted by Chess for Kids, 126 kids from 50 different schools came together to try their odds to be the best of the best at this European game. And after numerous games, the winners were unveiled and awarded a trophy and medal.

(photos courtesy of Steve Aja Photography)

Here is a list of the 1st place winners:

Austin Creek: Kyle Wu
Brookhaven: Jeremy Gleaves
CAVA: Jacob Crowhurts
Corona Creek: Adrian Gonzalez
Evergreen: Matthew Wilkin
Grant School: David Yee
Guerneville: Sam Kenny
Healdsburg Jr. High: Travis Williams
Hidden Valley Elementary School: John Burns & Edward Deng
Hidden Valley Satellite School: Rohit Gopalakrishnan & Anib Pravin
Homeschool: Heather Rainbow
Instilling Goodness: Cris Rhan & Anika Daniel
Liberty: Ethan Shahbazian
Mountain Shadows Middle School: Adam Koziol
Oak Grove: Erik Carver
Penngrove: Adam Kane
Pinecrest: Aiden Rameriz
Santa Rosa Charter for the Arts: Emil Guzman
Schaefer: Zack Schieberl, Christopher Martinez & Ryan Le
Sebastopol Independent Charter School: Liev Haroxche
Slater: Tyler Hale & Alexander March
St. Eugenes: Creighton Anderson-Soria, Monica Wishard & Amy Hulsman
Strawberry School: Aaron Thompson
Village Elementary: Noah Weiss & John Diez
Yulupa: Anahita Jensen & Andrew Gao

Santa Rosa Mom Recap For April 1st

There’s a lot of activity going on over at Santa Rosa Mom. Have you visited the site yet? In case you haven’t, here’s a recap of what’s been posted this past week.


April Fools’ Day was a sacred holiday in my house growing up. And my mom was the main conspirator. We would eat muffins that had been spiced with red pepper, pranked into believing a tall tale until she finally let us know who the fools were, and at night our beds would be short-sheeted so that our feet would only reach to halfway down the bed. But we’d get her back. Her prized garden would be threatened by the made-up story that her goat had gotten out and was munching all her vegetables and flowers…at 5 in the morning. Or we’d change all the settings on her car radio so that they only turned to one radio station. And in later years, one of us girls would feign pregnancy.  Is April Fools’ Day a holiday in your home too? What kinds of pranks did you pull as a kid? And how do you fool your family now?

The beginning of April is also an exciting time because it’s the start of a new challenge! Don’t worry, this one is much easier than last month. Think back to all the times when your child pulled some sort of naughtiness and you found yourself wondering, “What were they thinking???” If you’ve kept up on the Taz in my blog, you’ll know that I utter these words at least once a day. Well, this month’s challenge is to take those “precious” moments and capture them on film. Together we will be able to laugh about those very things that we may not have found very funny in the moment, like when they unrolled the whole entire roll of toilet paper or when they squeezed all the toothpaste out of the tube just for kicks. Need an example? Check out the Taz’ latest adventure involving a full bottle of laundry detergent.

With Easter right around the corner, no doubt you are busy hard-boiling eggs and preparing for the arrival of the Easter Bunny. In our house, we always saved at least one egg and tried to make it pure black. Of course, it would always be the first one in the dye, and then the last one to be done coloring. And the egg inside would always be a kind of gray matter that nobody really wanted to eat. There’s no doubt in my mind that many families have much better ideas for making a beautiful colored egg. Do you have any tips and techniques for coloring Easter eggs? And let’s not forget the Easter baskets. The contents of an Easter basket vary from family to family. As kids, our baskets always had jellybird eggs from See’s Candy, speckled chocolate Robin’s Eggs from Cadbury, and of course it wouldn’t be Easter without the classic Cadbury Egg with the creamy filling.  To make sure that we didn’t get cavities from the overload of sugar, the Easter Bunny was always faithful in leaving a brand new toothbrush as well.  What kinds of treats do you include in your Easter basket?

This week’s Mom Spotlight goes to one of our newest members, Amanda. Amanda just recently moved here from Missouri and has an 18 month old toddler. She is hoping to meet other moms of young children, and to make some new friends for herself and for her daughter. Won’t you go over to her Santa Rosa Mom profile page and wish her a warm hello?

And lastly, don’t miss some of the events that are posted in our Events Calendar. Today there is a seminar on Stranger and Internet Safety, giving families the tools on how to be safer with strangers, and how to navigate the internet safely. Tomorrow, My Gym will be hosting their Spring Break Open House where you can learn about their summer camp and their schedule for the summer. Plus, there will be plenty of fun at this event for the little ones! And on Saturday there will be a Spring Egg Hunt for Tots. The times are staggered for the different age groups to give each child an advantage in finding treats hidden in the grass of Howarth Park’s Softball Field. But hurry to register, space will fill up quickly! You can check out these events and so many more at our Events Calendar.

Have a wonderful rest of your week, and a (hopefully) beautiful weekend for egg hunting and celebrating with your family.

Sonoma County Teen Idol

Do you watch American Idol, and think, “Hey, my kid can do that!” Or maybe your child has expressed interest in showing off their vocal chops. Well, now’s their chance. Kodiak Jack’s is hosting Sonoma County Teen Idol for teens between the ages of 13-20. Prizes are $1000 first place, $500 second place, $250 third place. Event dates are Dec 6th, 13th, and 20th from 8pm – 10pm, and your teen must commit to being present for all three dates. There is no cover charge for these dates. 

To audition for this event, your teen can call 707-765-2515 and leave a singing voice message, up to 2 minutes acapella. Or they can come in to Kodiak Jack’s to audition during karaoke on Thursdays and Saturdays between 6PM-9:30PM. Auditions will be taking place up till December 3rd. For more information, check out the rules and regs on their website.