Dignity Health

Are you ready for some football?


by Vaun Thygerson
Staff writer and mother of three

footballKID
I have to admit, I used to be one of those women in the football stands.  You know the type:  the ones who go to football games for every other reason than to watch the game.  I love the ambience.  There’s nothing better than the crowd’s excitement, fun conversations with friends, doing the wave, and eating deliciously sweet and salty kettle korn.  But seriously, I had no idea what was going on out on the field.  I watched and cheered when appropriate, taking cues from my husband, but I didn’t know the difference between a first down and a field goal.

Well, things have had to change… I have been learning (a little bit at a time) the rules of football.  By no means would I call myself an expert in this sport, but I have decided to take an interest in the game since my nine-year-old son has started playing for Bakersfield’s North of the River Quakes Pee Wee team.  When carting him and his friend to and from practice, I enjoy hearing them talk about their coach and different positions he has them trying out.  And, when game time comes, I actually watch the game (or at least the cute kid with the number 56 printed on the back of his jersey).

As moms, we will do anything to help our children succeed.  Whether it’s learning the rules of a new sport they like or finding the best place for their educational future.  KCFM recently spent a day out at Taft College meeting with the people who make their Transition to Independent Living (TIL) Program a successful place where students with intellectual disabilities can learn the skills necessary to live independently.  Thanks to Jeff Ross, John Dodson, Sheri Horn-Bunk, and the president of Taft College, Dr. Dena D. Maloney for taking their time to talk to us about this unique program.  We also met a lot of the students participating in TIL and went on a comprehensive tour of the classrooms, dorms, and houses.  Read all about our day at Taft in the article, “Unique Students Learn How to Live Independently,” on page 12.

This month you can also experience side-splitting humor as you read Tracie Grimes’s Humor at Home article, “The Dos and Don’ts of the ‘Do.”  A lot of women can relate to her hairstyle woes and how, especially after you turn a certain age, your hair maintenance can take over your life.  She writes about how her hair literally has a mind of its own and most of the time she doesn’t know what it’s thinking.  To commiserate or have a chuckle, turn to page 10.

Tracie Grimes also gives us her monthly book reviews in her article, “Using Activities to Show Reading is Fun,” on page 17.  She writes about finding more creative ways to inspire your children to read – by pairing up some super cool activities to go along with the books you’re reading.  Some of her recommended titles include “Bear in Love,” by Daniel Pinkwater, and “King Arthur’s Very Great Grandson,” by Kenneth Kraegel.  And, for a read that’s suited for both mom and dad, she says to check out “The Innocent,” by David Baldacci.

As September has us pretty much back to our regularly scheduled lives with school, homework, car pools, and bedtimes, take a cue from your kids and let them teach you a thing or two.  Experience and learn from what they are interested in and doing.  You might find a fun hobby, read a good book, or learn about a game so the next time you watch it, you might actually know what’s going on out on the field!

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