Sunday, January 21, 2018

Trick or Treatment

It hardly seems 50 years ago that I dressed up as a pirate and rang a neighbor’s doorbell, standing next to my two older brothers, each with sacks in hand extended for treats. What a great holiday Halloween was!

There was free candy, just for the asking. The excitement of moonlit nights, romping the streets with other children decked out in cartoonish wear, added further thrills to this uniquely American suburban adventure. The thrills continued once we were home, pouring the sack of bounty onto the table, sorting out the bars from the rolls, finding the favorites, and maybe, just maybe, making a trade with a sibling.

Read more: Trick or Treatment

The Halloween-Season Dream: Dealing with Childhood Nightmares

When my son was four years old, he once came in crying while I was working in my home office at 5 a.m. He was crying, "Daddy! You were a zombie in my dream!"

What exactly IS a nightmare or a “bad” dream?

REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep is our dream sleep. We are consolidating memories in REM, turning recent events into long-term memories. That's why we may have a dream of someone we have not seen in ten years. That night, my son was dreaming of me, wearing a Halloween mask. About a week prior we had bought Halloween costumes. Essentially, my son was processing recent events into long-term memories.

Read more: The Halloween-Season Dream: Dealing with Childhood Nightmares

New “Kids Making Healthy Choices” Phone APP Motivates Kids to Healthful Living

Mississippi, often noted in studies as one of the more “overweight” states in the U.S., has its share of children struggling with overweight and obesity, including the related health conditions, such as Type II Diabetes. Parents of such children may want to consider any and all resources that might aid in growing better habits when it comes to diet and exercise.

Read more: New “Kids Making Healthy Choices” Phone APP Motivates Kids to Healthful Living

Remembrances of Halloween Past

It is October 31, half-a-century ago, in a small town on the Gulf Coast. As usual, there’s a Halloween night chill in the air, so my mother insists I wear a jacket over my pirate costume – at least until I reach the front door of the houses we visit.

Canvas bag in hand, I stand at the front door of our nearest neighbor. I am wearing pirate boots made of “Mary Janes” covered to the knee with black cardboard, and a handmade pirate hat resplendent with silver skull and crossbones, compliments of my clever New Orleanian mother. Half of my plastic sword shows below the bottom edge of the jacket. With nine-year-old girl lungs, I bellow.

“Trick or treat!”

Read more: Remembrances of Halloween Past

Is it a Concussion?

During sports or play, a child often leads with his head, charging forward and butting into obstacles, such as soccer balls or members of the opposing football team. Following a head smack, if there’s any type of confusion or altered thinking, it becomes a concussion. This means ANY alteration, from a few seconds of feeling dazed, to prolonged confusion, to being completely knocked out. Even this definition may not pick up all concussions, for sometimes symptoms might only show up hours, days, even much later.

Read more: Is it a Concussion?

Calendar of Events - Gulf Coast

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