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Families

“I was so wrong” With her 13-year-old in ICU with a life-threatening case of covid, Angela Morris urges parents to get vaccinated and to vaccinate their eligible kids.
The new federal child tax credit: Explained The parents of the majority of Arkansas children are eligible to receive monthly payments of up to $300 per child as part of federal pandemic relief.
MASTER CLASS: Top athletes teach us that routine is everything About a month ago, I decided not to watch more than 30 minutes of TV a day until school starts back up. I miss sports.
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7-Day Menu Planner Turmeric-spiced chicken with tomato-avocado salsa is on the menu this week for budget-conscious families.
'SpongeBob Musical' splashes onto LR stage The Studio Theatre, 320 W. Seventh St. in Little Rock, is staging "The SpongeBob Musical" through Aug. 1.
Virus hit unvaccinated Arkansas mom-to-be fast and hard Looking forward to the birth of their first child, Ashton Reed and her husband never expected what seemed like a common cold to make their lives a living hell.
Breakfast, art and animals at the LR Zoo "Breakfast With a Twist" is a monthly, small group activity that celebrates the Little Rock Zoo’s iconic animals. It will feature gorillas Aug. 14 and penguins Sept. 11.
Here’s how to teach an anxious dog to relax in the car The most effective way to help a dog feel calm in the car involves a series of small steps.
RIGHT TIME RIGHT PLACE: Cotham’s in Scott It took two recommendations, a nudge and an identity verification for Daniel Kirkpatrick to have a date with Barbara Brabston.
OPINION: Time to let that scooter girl go When I tried to pry off the license plate, I realized my scooter was last registered in 2014.
OPINION | READ TO ME: Mouse with a mission This picture book about an adventurous mouse that plucks trash out of a big museum doubles as a memory game.
OPINION | REVIEW: 'Mario Golf' isn’t in all that much of a rush "Mario Golf: Super Rush" is a little slow but does a fair job of injecting a little Mushroom Kingdom levity into the staid game.
OPINION | REVIEW: These video games arrived just when we needed to hug some bears Many games released in recent weeks offer more story and less violence in "wholesome" digital worlds built primarily for exploration. Instead of killing, players listen and try to understand.
OPINION | PARENTING: Stop indulging children's overreactionary feelings Parents should help kids learn to restrain unruly emotions instead of being driven by them.
Beat the summer heat with a visit to a splash pad Here we have some cool information about nine splashy splash pads in Central Arkansas.
How to register a child for school in Arkansas Whether signing a little one up for school for the first time or sending one to a new district after a move, here are the basics on school registration in Arkansas.
Missing for 10 years, Arkansas dog is found 2,000 miles away In 2011, a miniature schnauzer named Razzle vanished into the Arkansas wilderness, to the great dismay of his family.
Bentonville teen progresses on American Ninja Warrior Owen Dyer is hanging on by his fingertips on the latest season of "American Ninja Warrior." That's just how he likes it.
Arkansas couples overcome delays and hazards to get married Reagan Muse Timmermann and Dr. Cody Timmermann, and Alejandro Solarte DeSalvo and Michael DeSalvo Solarte are two couples whose marriage plans were derailed by covid — temporarily.
OPINION: We grew up in very different gun cultures This former military brat isn’t terrified by open carry in the U.S., but seeing guns in her husband’s hometown in Mexico upset her. He had the opposite reaction.
OPINION | READ TO ME: Tiny, fierce and cute Part of the series A Nature Diary, this delightful picture book illustrates the G-rated parts of a hummingbird's life.
Living with pets reduces future allergies in kids Recent studies have shown that pets inside the home seem to protect children from allergies.
MASTER CLASS: Train for vacation, spend less time in recovery Matt Parrott shares some of his favorite strategies for not spending a vacation limping and moaning.
RIGHT TIME RIGHT PLACE: Letters Anita Grace and Bill Donnell dated for a year, broke up for four, and then sent letters that crossed in the mail, ultimately bringing them back together for good.
Where to find frozen goodies in Central Arkansas To help everyone stay cool, here are 15 places to get frozen treats in Little Rock and beyond.
Elmo gets a puppy A homeless dog wanders onto Sesame Street and Elmo is eager to help in a new, 30-minute special.
MASTER CLASS: Train in summer for enjoyable fall hikes Here’s a cool training idea (cool as in “nifty,” not cool as in climate) that can improve your ability to enjoy hiking.
Some cats’ skin temperature affects their color Dark points make the Himalayan, Siamese, ragdoll and similar breeds unusually beautiful. Here’s why.
7-Day Menu Planner Here’s a week's worth of menus for the budget conscious family.
OPINION: A home of our own — we happy few I've blocked out most of our house-hunting memories, but I remember my child laughing in the backyard of the house we now own.
RIGHT TIME RIGHT PLACE: Wendy’s They went to different high schools, so it almost game over for Lacy Barnes and Brandon Lambert before it even began.
OPINION | READ TO ME: Little sister tells her tale Big Sister can tie her own shoes. She says, "I tou-can." Little Sister wails, "I tou-can't" while tangled in her laces.
Nurse-midwives are heartened by recent change in state law Act 607 of 2021 gives certified nurse-midwives full practice authority in gynecological, prenatal, delivery, postnatal care and reproductive health cases.
OPINION: Embrace the power of ‘Because I said so’ So what if children don't like an instruction you give or a consequence you levy? "Whadda they know?"
OPINION: Fall in love as often as you can Fall in love and you walk on air, trying to hide a goofy smile, thinking nobody knows while everybody does.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: North Little Rock For now-humorous reasons, dogs are a motif in some of the 75 or so public-art works proudly adorning North Little Rock.
Jumble for Kids Unscramble the letters to spell real words and use those words to solve the Jumble for Kids. Study the picture for a hint. You can color the picture, too.
Junior Sliding Puzzle Slide the puzzle pieces around to reveal the image.
Junior Memo Build your memory skills by uncovering the matching picture cards.
10 food and culture festivals in July From watermelons to peaches, from folk music to the blues, festivals this July will showcase a range of Arkansas culture.
Where to find Arkansas peaches Food editor Kelly Brant compiled a long (but not complete) list of peach places, and she gives us recipes so we can savor those peaches, too.
American pies Celebrating the Fourth of July? That's as American as apple pie, and a berry pie is American, too.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: Prairie Grove This summer's visitors to Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park can get a clear sense of the combat on Dec. 7, 1862 — except for what the weather was like.
OPINION | READ TO ME: Keep them busy Mike Lowery's latest activities idea book outlines more than 100 fun and easy projects for younger children.
7-Day Menu Planner Patriotic cookies are a highlight of this week’s worth of family menus.
It’s like a reality show, starring penguins A new 8-part series on Netflix, "Penguin Town" revels in the personalities of individual penguins.
7-Day Menu Planner The star of this week's worth of menus for the budget-conscious family is the Bacon, Lettuce, Tomato and Pimento Cheese Sandwich. Yum.
OPINION: Parents should put the kids second, after their own relationship The better the husband, the better the dad. The better the wife, the better the mom. It doesn't work the other way around.
OPINION: Let us cast aside the dumb dad ads After my husband bought a certain brand of shirt, I started getting ads from that brand, too, ads that encouraged me to disdain my husband.
MASTER CLASS: The Plank Macarena makes virtual fitness fun Here’s an exercise that’s a hoot to do with a group — even a virtual group.
RIGHT TIME RIGHT PLACE: Party City Amy Glasgow was so nervous about interviewing for her first job that she barely noticed the store's assistant manager, though he would end up being part of her life far longer than the job.
Take the kids to see the famous swamp At Louisiana Purchase Historic State Park, visitors can view animals and vegetation that are not easily found anywhere else in Arkansas.
ASK THE VET: Here are the smartest ways to save on vet bills Precautions to prevent disaster make it less likely you’ll face a terrible choice between your budget and your fur baby's well-being.
Readers share the big lessons they learned from Dad In honor of Father's Day, we asked our readers, "What is the most important lesson you learned from your father or father figure?"
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: Pea Ridge Pea Ridge National Military Park's visitor center explains the importance of the Union’s victory and the hardships suffered by residents during the Civil War.
‘Cool Globes’ outdoor exhibit at Clinton Presidential Center Like colorful mini-planets on the grounds of the William J. Clinton Presidential Center, 26 whimsical spheres invite visitors to think about global warming.
Little Rock adds 10 more miles of bike trails New mountain bike trails at River Mountain Park are rated green, blue and black for difficulty. A kids bicycle-skill area at Two Rivers Park is expected to open soon.
Here’s what goes into a go-bag The Pets Evacuation and Transportation Standards Act became law in 2006, mandating that pets and service animals will be sheltered during disasters.
OPINION: Little kids don't need so many toys By age 2, the typical child has more than 50 toys. Under the circumstances, "play" consists of making a mess.
Happy campers kayak past unique geologic formations on the Buffalo River The Buffalo National River can be crowded with paddlers. To avoid the hordes of floaters the upper river put-ins attract, this weekend group outing chose the less accessible Pruitt-to-Woolum section of the river.
OPINION: ‘Luca’ Airy and adorable, "Luca" follows a teenage sea monster as he discovers his love for the surface world.
MASTER CLASS: Developing coordination safely and effectively The Kettlebell Squat Curl is a great way to combine two exercises that might otherwise be split into two (or more) separate movements.
OPINION: The school of hard knocks My grandson, Henry, just finished third grade. In second grade, before the pandemic changed life as we knew it, Henry loved school.
OPINION | READ TO ME: A literary triumph Besides being a humorously illustrated mystery about what sort of monster Moofy might be, this terrific little book illustrates 17 figures of speech, translated into little-kid terms.
Annual ranking looks at child welfare conditions in state Despite rising numbers of children without health insurance and high levels of poverty, Arkansas improved its national ranking by one in an annual report on childhood well-being.
OPINION: My kid suggested I write about ‘cups’ It was hard for my dad to describe to me what he did at work when I was little. He was a mechanic in the Air Force, specializing in hydraulics for F-16s.
RIGHT TIME RIGHT PLACE: Sidewalk William Allen saw a girl dance-walking down the sidewalk at Lincoln High School in Star City, and he knew that he had to meet her. She was not interested in him — at all.
MASTER CLASS: Legs of steel? Meet legs on fire This exercise is a fun variation of the wall sit that challenges the quadriceps specifically while adding extra work for the torso.
Is my kid a Roblox addict? My 9-year-old daughter, who made Lego habitats and fairy potions in the Before Times, now just ... keeps ... playing ... Roblox. I turned to experts for advice.
READ TO ME: Brick by brick, this father builds a city With collage illustrations and collage-like prose in English and Spanish, this is a portrait of an immigrant boy's love for his hardworking father.
Some online pet pharmacies can’t be trusted Most manufacturers guarantee medications dispensed by your veterinarian but not those shipped from an online pharmacy.
RIGHT TIME RIGHT PLACE: Home Dana Glover felt like she knew Eric Spann before she even met him. He had his eye on the future, though, and he didn't see her in it just yet.
OPINION: Wishing ‘Wish Dragon’ was a better movie This reviewer says "Wish Dragon" is not as bad as "The Emoji Movie," and it’s light years ahead of any of the "Hotel Transylvania" sequels, but ...
Movies in the Park returns to Little Rock's Riverfront Park in July Little Rock’s River Market is bringing back Movies in the Park, Wednesdays in July in the Riverfront Park Amphitheater.
State’s schools are all accredited All 262 Arkansas public school systems and 1,050 schools are accredited by the state with none on probation and none even accredited-with-citations for the 2020-21 school year that has just ended.
OPINION: Do we want to work to live or live to work? People are debating why workers are slow to return to the workforce after lockdowns lift. Surely wanting a good life plays a role.
OPINION | READ TO ME: Gibbering monster, annoyed kid, fast friends "Breezy" is a good description of this deceptively casual picture book in which speaking different languages is not a barrier to friendship.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: Petit Jean Arkansas' oldest state park has opened a stylish new visitor center filled with facts and fun for grown-ups and youngsters alike.
Where to pick berries in Arkansas during summer 2021 Berry season opens in May and goes on, depending on the berry, through August. Here are places to find them.
OPINION | READ TO ME: Joyful caterpillars have fun with metamorphosis Metamorphosis is an exciting event in the fast-paced lives of two caterpillars in this joyful, mildly informative picture book.
ASK THE VET: Antifreeze is harmful to pets Hosing down a puddle of spilled antifreeze just adds to its potential for harm.
MASTER CLASS: When strength and endurance slump, so do we With a few exceptions, poor posture is a good indicator of declining musculoskeletal health.
RIGHT TIME RIGHT PLACE: Funeral Kayla Ragsdale's first memorable conversation with Rayce Dauber happened when she was 11 years old and he came to her mother's funeral.
OPINION: ‘Spirit Untamed’ is a rare and satisfying reboot "Spirit Untamed" is a story of a girl who befriends a wild horse and learns where her true home is.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: Eureka Springs Most of Eureka Springs’ restaurants and lodgings are open and ready to welcome tourists.
FoodTok trending Ambitious teenagers willing to ham it up in the kitchen have millions of followers on TikTok.
Grumpy dogs are watching A new study suggests difficult dogs learn faster from strangers than easygoing dogs do.
OPINION: This, too, shall pass — cherish it When my kids decide that screaming is a high art, I wish they would hurry up and grow up. But how will I feel after they do?
OPINION | READ TO ME: Message in a mouse in a ship in a bottle Without any overt preachiness but a wealth of subtle humor, "Ship in a Bottle" makes a case for empathy: Refugees live or die on the kindness of strangers.
MASTER CLASS: Some exercises drive testosterone production Knowing that there's a daily fluctuation in testosterone levels can help people plan and stick with regular workouts.
Teach cats to like having their nails trimmed Handled correctly, cats will learn to like having their nails trimmed so much they’ll run over when you clip your own nails.
OPINION | BOB ROBINSON: Arkansas’ newest Monument Trail is a devil of a good time Devil's Den State Park has opened Arkansas' fourth Monument Trail, destined to be a destination for bikers and hikers.
OPINION | READ TO ME: Brave mouse, sleek cats, happy fish, bad idea In this wrongheaded but charming animal fantasy, a mouse blows bubbles in a fish bowl and releases the goldfish into the wild.
Claims made about pet travel-safety gear aren’t regulated The Center for Pet Safety, a nonprofit research and advocacy organization, conducts rigorous crash testing on pet carriers, crates and harnesses.
MASTER CLASS: Progress will not happen without struggle There is pain without gain and there is gain without pain, but without struggle there is no progress
RIGHT TIME RIGHT PLACE: Golf course A second marriage is about companionship," she explains.
9 state parks with swimming lakes The Natural State may be landlocked, but that doesn’t mean Arkansans can’t enjoy a beach day.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: Louisiana Purchase park takes visitors back in time One of Arkansas' most secluded and historic state parks is newly improved to provide a sharper sense of the site's importance.
Turtles are on the move Sixteen of the world’s 300 species of turtles can be found in Arkansas.
Mosaic Templars exhibit to highlight positive role played by The Green Book An exhibit at Mosaic Templars Cultural Center presents an opportunity to help kids understand how Black people helped one another survive Jim Crow.
Adorable Pets Contest The Humane Society of Pulaski County will hold its third annual Adorable Arkansas Pets Contest starting June 1.
Governor clears kids 12-up to get vaccine Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced May 12 that Arkansans age 12-15 had been cleared to receive coronavirus vaccine.
OPINION | READ TO ME: The right way vs. the wrong way Funny animal characters illustrate classic situations in which an apology is in order.
OPINION: Bungling a name is disrespectful "One day," I've told my daughter, "you'll know who is truly your friend by whether they get your name right."
Here’s why fat cats need our help Most domestic cats live sedentary indoor lives where eating is the most exciting activity of the day.
MASTER CLASS: Adaptable Scorpion Stretch can benefit biomechanics Matt Parrott gives us another beneficial movement to try out, carefully.
RIGHT TIME RIGHT PLACE: Childhood James Harkins was 7 when he saw Amy Kemp at the pool and announced he was going to marry her.
Build a future for your family in the Middle Ages In this video game, you play as a peasant, and your goal is to build a village, start a family and pass wealth to the next generation.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: Two towns in one Visitors find that Calico Rock has a definite split personality on the opposite sides of its Calico Creek.
The May Day miracle Twenty years ago, parents across Arkansas held their breath as searchers fanned out near Hawksbill Crag to look for 6-year-old Haley Zega.
Germinating idea The Central Arkansas Library System lends out books, movies and music as well as fishing poles, toys, tools and now ... seeds.
Endless Summer: Camps and activities take another step toward ‘normal’ With camps and other supervised summer activities reopening, here's how four organizations are preparing to protect children.
RIGHT TIME RIGHT PLACE: Shooting star There were no fireworks when Lauren Baker and Josh Kinder met, not for about six years.
She weaves plastic grocery bags into sleeping mats Pat Roby found a crafty way to help the homeless and repurpose plastic grocery bags.
MASTER CLASS: Core training replaces situps with better results Even today, every so often I still see people doing situps. There are much better ways to train the abdominals.
Train your deaf dog by using hand signals With kind, consistent training, deaf dogs can learn hand signals and become wonderful family pets.
OPINION | READ TO ME: These ‘Ramble Shamble’ kids are all right Five kids enjoy life in their rickety home, until they read about a “proper” house and decide to step up to a fancier lifestyle.
Which home renovations require permits? Here’s how to find out in Central Arkansas whether planned improvements require permits from your city.
Strawberry cake paints the season pink Strawberry season arrived a bit later this year, but local berries are well worth the wait (and the 25-minute drive to the strawberry farm).
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: Ozark Folk Center State Park reopens Craft Village Ozark Folk Center State Park's Craft Village has reopened for a full season of entertaining and educational activities.
MASTER CLASS: Exercise your imagination for a better workout Here’s a simple but challenging exercise that can be done in just about any workout setting.
Pregnant women can avoid 'toxo' and keep their cats It's easy to prevent infection once you know a little about Toxoplasma.
OPINION | READ TO ME: Facial hair is normal for girls, too This picture book is for all the little girls whose inherited hairiness makes them a target for bullies at school.
OPINION: 'Lost Words' will appeal to young writers When friends with children ask for video game recommendations, "Lost Words: Beyond the Page" should be on the list.
New program spots Arkansas baby's rare condition The news that changed the course of Ollie's life came from a doctor when he was just 9 days old.
RIGHT TIME RIGHT PLACE: History She was Jewish; he had been conscripted into the Hitler Youth.
Green herons return to Little Rock Central High There are about 2,400 students at Little Rock Central High School. There are also three green herons.
OPINION | READ TO ME: Actor’s dog lives on in picture book A confident bulldog inspires his neighbors to question the status quo in this picture book.
ASK THE VET: Most dogs don't see as well as people do While dogs' smell and hearing are far superior to humans', their vision isn't quite as good.
Third-grader holds food drives Some kids set up lemonade stands; this one collected food for hungry families.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: Ozark Housed in a depot built in 1911 for the Iron Mountain Railroad, this quirky museum tells the story of a river town was founded in the steamboat era.
MASTER CLASS: A medicine ball exercise to try at home Home exercise is full of opportunity, especially during this bizarre time.
How to find and evaluate child care and get vouchers Arkansas’ Department of Human Services offers resources to help parents find and vet child-care facilities, as well as information on financial assistance.
13 inspiring women of science This middle-school book illustrates a few of the cool jobs possible for girls who study science, technology, mathematics and engineering.
Trying to drink less? There’s an app for that People whose drinking escalated during the pandemic have found novel ways to dial it back without quitting altogether.
RIGHT TIME RIGHT PLACE: Airplane Emily Argue and Jeff Stotts were at the same college for two years, but it took some randomly assigned plane seats to get them talking.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: Historic sub is open for tours The USS Razorback is back in business on North Little Rock's waterfront.
Why calico cats and torties are almost always female Calico cats have orange, black and white fur, while tortoiseshell cats — "torties" — sport orange and black fur.
MASTER CLASS: Yard work doesn’t have to wreck your body Matt Parrott provides a few strategies for maximizing the yard-work fun factor while minimizing injury risk.
Spring’s the right time to set out in search of sneezing little bird An outdoor adventure to look for the "Arkansaw Flycatcher" is a fine way to see the Natural State.
Monitor diabetic pet's blood sugar at home The vet says her clients easily learn to check their pets' blood sugar whenever the pet doesn't seem quite right.
1st grader's letter gets Old Navy's attention Kamryn Gardner just wanted to be able to put her hands in her pockets to keep them warm.
OPINION | READ TO ME: An old house finds its forever family The empty house expects another family to move in soon, but everyone who visits rejects it as too small or too old.
MASTER CLASS: Three ways to raise strength training intensity This Modified Burpee is performed at a slower speed than a traditional burpee so you feel it even more in the upper body and core.
RIGHT TIME RIGHT PLACE: Downtown Holly Grove George Cunningham watched as his friend talked with Ruby Foster, and he realized instantly that he just had to talk with her himself.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING A short outdoor stroll is now needed to view one of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art's most awesome sculptures.
OPINION: Divorce — video game style This weird, fun video game for two players is engineered to foster genuine cooperation.
ASK THE VET: What if your cats hate the RV? It's a good idea to try an easy overnight trip with your cats before setting out across the nation in an RV.
OPINION: 'Mutropolis' is more fun to watch than to play Watching "Mutropolis" as I might an Adult Swim cartoon, I was able to appreciate it as a solid comedic work without having to suffer through its abstruse puzzles.
OPINION | READ TO ME: Friendship arrives ‘Out of Nowhere’ This picture book makes a sweet point about enduring friendship.
MASTER CLASS: Why stand still when you could move? Strength training can be performed while moving one's body using an athletic, functional technique that's a lot of fun.
RECIPES: A cake worth the buzz With its classical skep shape and cute little stingless bees, this beehive cake is perfect for spring birthdays and baby showers.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: Bathhouse Row As Hot Springs National Park celebrates its centennial, downtown is looking its sharpest since the city’s prime time as a bathing resort.
How to help your cat feel cozy in its carrier A few tricks can help a cat feel less desperately determined to escape during visits to the veterinarian.
OPINION | GAME ON: 'Conqueror's Blade' covers genres Our reviewer says teens will like free-to-play, real-time strategy, massively multiplayer online game that offers players a chance to be a warlord commanding an elite squad while taking part in epic battles.
OPINION | READ TO ME: Brief look at a huge topic Part of the Welcome to the Museum series from Big Picture Press, "Fungarium" is a large book holding a brief but intimidating look at the little known, massive universe of fungi.
MASTER CLASS: Good weight management includes strength training This week's exercise is an example of strength training to increase resting metabolic rate without equipment.
Thousands of Arkansas foster children are waiting for a home Log onto the Arkansas Heart Gallery, a register of children awaiting permanent families, and the scroll of faces could populate the city of Lonoke.
'Tour' sites associated with women's right to vote “Rightfully Hers” is an interactive digital map of sites in Arkansas associated with the struggle for women's suffrage or with women activists in the state.
ASK THE VET: Easter lilies can cause kidney failure in cats All parts of a lily can cause kidney failure in cats. but the flower is the most toxic part.
MASTER CLASS: Let’s get personal about your workout Individual, meaningful fitness experiences can be had without paying hundreds of dollars a month.
Monumental trails for biking and hiking Pinnacle Mountain is the third state park involved in the Monument Trails project, following Hobbs and Mount Nebo, with Devil's Den soon to be added.
RECIPES: Planting culinary seeds On a speck of property in Fayetteville, the nonprofit Apple Seeds Teaching Farm is using gardens to help teach young people about where their food comes from and just how yummy it can be.
OPINION | READ TO ME: Floating to school across the mighty Mekong In this picture book set in Vietnam, we meet a boy on his way to school and floating there by himself for the first time.
Intricate 'Loop Hero' is cooler than it looks When I first saw a broadcast of someone playing "Loop Hero," I thought they were playing a game from the 1980s.
How to get a copy of an Arkansas birth certificate Here are the basics on how to get copies of vital records.
Lonely hearts cuddle cows for comfort when pandemic is too much People are signing up to hug cows at sanctuaries across the country. Meanwhile, one enterprise in Arkansas had to put its plan to offer cow cuddling on hold.
Develop backup plan for pet in case of covid While pets are legally considered property, you shouldn't simply add a provision to your will transferring your fur baby to someone else like he's a piece of furniture.
MASTER CLASS: Taking advantage of personal data devices Knowing your blood pressure, heart rate, hydration level, caloric expenditure and other information leads to better decisions about diet, exercise and recovery.
READ TO ME: How to cope with bullies who love you In this upsetting, heartening story told in free verse, middle-schoolers meet a girl who learns to stand up for herself — because she has allies who help her see that she is worthy.
Teach pets the rules of the house Dogs and cats are not people, and all the yelling in the world will not teach them to stop destroying your stuff.
Tips for first-time campers Planning a family camping trip in the Natural State? Check out this advice from park interpreters.
MASTER CLASS: Archer Bodyweight Skull Crusher With each year that passes, my exercise routine becomes a little more cardiovascular and a little less strength based.
How much is enough? “Enough” money for retirement is one thing, but what is enough money for your life in the decades before you retire?
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING The Marked Tree siphons are an engineering marvel that lifts the flow of a river over a levee and brings it back down on the other side.
Meet the family Von Trapped This six-voice family choir, with its sweet harmonies and the occasional wobbly note, is creating songs that dramatize the mundane moments of lockdown life, from too much screen time to the horrors of remote learning.
Conway teen creates crossword puzzles Simon Marotte, a 16-year-old junior at Conway High School, started creating crossword puzzles last year and has already had three accepted by The New York Times.
ASK THE VET: Cat scratching posts should be tall, stable, numerous Punishments and shouting will not stop cats from scratching furniture, but these tricks will.
OPINION | READ TO ME: Small but mighty Set in Lagos, Nigeria, this illustrated chapter book will broaden young readers' views of the world.
MASTER CLASS: Virtual fitness era brings a chance to try new workouts For those of us who used to work out at fitness centers, 2020 was a chance to expand our options to include family workouts, parks and virtual fitness training.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING The Old State House Museum has mounted a lighthearted exhibit that makes a sprightly counterpoint to its sober-sided main focus on Arkansas political history.
A chance to be a part of history Weeks after the first cases of covid-19 were discovered in Arkansas in 2020, libraries and cultural institutions began asking the community to help document the pandemic. They still want to hear from you.
What a concept The Little Free Sled Library applies the concept of the Little Free Library or Little Free Pantry to sleds.
OPINION | READ TO ME: Critters that drive critter-cars in the trees Kids who enjoy studying drawings with little parts and who are old enough to enjoy maps will like the scenery in this animal fantasy.
ASK THE VET: When your pup always looks sad Bronze tear staining in dogs is usually a cosmetic concern rather than a medical emergency, and there are steps you can take.
MASTER CLASS: Have your social distance and a circuit workout, too With a bit of planning, you can still do a circuit workout at the gym.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: Check out Hot Springs beyond the obvious Hot Springs has more to see outdoors than just Bathhouse Row.
GROWN: Buying your first house, in Arkansas, explained Buying a home is an infamously complicated, sometimes long process. Here are some first steps and tips from real estate agents.
MASTER CLASS: Exercise gets a bit easier if you make a game of it When indoor exercise is the only real option, make a game of it.
OPINION | READ TO ME: 'Before the Ever After' Set a decade before the scandal over chronic traumatic encephalopathy in the NFL, this prose-poem story depicts a 12-year-old boy’s view of his athletic father’s fall from public glory.
OPINION | MASTER CLASS: Resist a culture that makes sedentary life the norm Living a healthy lifestyle is about millions of small choices. For some people, this means going against the grain of their social network.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING From 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday, visitors can explore the four floors of Arkansas’ Capitol.
OPINION: Magic, slim plot in 'Earwig and the Witch' Miyazaki. Say the name, and you've got my attention. HBO Max is airing a new movie from Studio Ghibli by Goro Miyazaki, "Earwig and the Witch."
GAME ON/OPINION: 'Crying Suns' is like ‘FTL’ but with a real story For ages 10+, this video game has a compelling story about what happens to humankind if the technology people rely on everyday simply isn't there anymore.
OPINION: Good puzzles, pretty art, silly narrative The video game “Call of the Sea” wears its affinity for H.P. Lovecraft and weird, early 20th-century fiction like a flower in a lapel.
Play on: Music instruction adapts and soars in pandemic The pandemic has muffled live music performances, but musical instruction is doing big business.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING Arkansas has 17 national landmarks.
Keep cat's litter box appealing and clean Here are smart tips for protecting potted plants from your cats.
READ TO ME/OPINION: Zapped and trapped in a video game Anyone with any sense might pause over being converted to pixels and wonder about the consequences, but not Jack the rascally rabbit.
Which of the new game consoles is right for you? Now that the next-gen consoles from Microsoft and Sony have been unleashed upon the world, the next question is, "Which one should I buy?" It depends.
E for everyone A tide of family-friendly video games can entertain kids and comfort adults.
GAME ON/OPINION: 'Wilmot's Warehouse' an Amazon experience Zenlike and relaxing, but also fast-paced and anxiety-inducing, "Wilmot's Warehouse" is rated E for everybody.
REVIEW: “Sackboy’ is a delightful game, but it’s missing something "Sackboy: A Big Adventure" is a lustrous romp of carnival fantasy and rated E for Everybody.
'Fall Guys' is a wacky, silly game with loads of fun Games such as "Fortnite" and "PUBG" might have popularized the battle royale genre, but it has been perfected by the beautifully silly "Fall Guys: The Ultimate Knockout."
GAME ON: Protect allies and find killers in whodunit game ‘Among Us’ This video game is based on party games like Mafia.
New Zelda game 'Age of Calamity’ has action aplenty but not much story If you don't go in with the mindset that “Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity” is the next magical, puzzle-filled Zelda open-world game, you'll find a satisfying entry in the annals of game brilliance first created by Shigeru Miyamoto more than three decades ago.
Drift gently along the high seas with your ‘Raft,’ your pals — and sharks Here to trigger everyone's thalassophobia, or fear of the sea, is the open-water survival and crafting video game "Raft."
GAME ON: Turn-based 'Battle Brothers' is rewardingly difficult Leading a mercenary crew is a risky job, but for the few who survive, glory and honor await. Also, the guys are weird little chessmen-like dudes.
“Townscaper”: Pretty villages, cities, castles pop-pop-pop into existence Not so much a video game as a digital toy, “Townscaper” lets you create fanciful floating buildings, from sheds to villas and whole villages.
For teens and older, ‘Spiritfarer’ lets you befriend and serve stranded souls In this sensitive video game, you are a girl who becomes a ferrymaster for the deceased in a fantastical world, guiding spirits to the afterlife.
Pokémon Go, Pokémon stay: Popular mobile game adapts to the pandemic When gatherings could prove disastrously hazardous to public health, and the act of wandering your city is discouraged, how does a game based on those mechanics survive? It evolves.
No such thing as a hypoallergenic dog All dogs produce at least six allergens, substances that can trigger allergic reactions in susceptible people.
MASTER CLASS: Iliopsoas Stretch helps prevent lower back pain Chronic low back pain can be produced by various factors, but the two most common culprits are core weakness and inflexibility.
Conceived in a pandemic, born in a pandemic Katy Dobson and her family have taken to calling her 2-week-old boy, Atlas, a "coronial."
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: The Sultana disaster story has outgrown museum Fundraising is planned to expand little museum dedicated to an Arkansas steamboat disaster that claimed more victims than the Titanic's fabled sinking.
READ TO ME/OPINION: Sneaky Wolf loses his appetite A wolf loses his appetite after spending time with his prey in this sweet picture book.
ASK THE VET: Teach children respect for dogs to prevent bites Most bite victims are children, usually boys between the ages of 5 and 9, who are provoking dogs they know.
Exercise 'snacks' take a few minutes or even mere seconds Physical fitness doesn't have to be an "all or nothing" undertaking. A little here, a little there works better in the long run.
MASTER CLASS: Careful back care program can change a life Giving a speech about flexibility, I can almost hear collective groans from the audience. It's a little like lecturing on the value of eating vegetables.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: Arkansas Heritage Trails Remember your folks pulling over to let you read historic markers? Arkansas has about about 2,000, and they are organized into trails.
OPINION: ‘Kingmaker’ game rooted in D&D play Rated T for teens and older, "Pathfinder: Kingmaker" translates the Dungeons & Dragons style fantasy team storytelling game to video game console or desktop.
Infected felines need extra care to survive A cat's immune system can remain strong enough to keep feline leukemia virus or feline immunodeficiency virus in check for years, and the infected cat lives a relatively normal life.
READ TO ME: Projects and games from America’s Test Kitchen From website to workbook, "Kitchen Explorers!" includes more than 60 recipes presented as experiments and some games.
Building joy: Everyone gather round the squirrel table — chipmunks too Backyard critters around the country have been eating like furry little kings at squirrel tables.
READ TO ME: Little paper boat, perilous, wondrous seas This feast of precision line drawing looks like a children's book, and it can be. But not for little bitty kids.
Secondhand smoke causes cancer in cats Veterinarians do recognize a few risk factors for lymphoma in cats.
MASTER CLASS: Rubbery bands stretch your options for a solid workout High quality bands will hold their tightness longer and are more break resistant.
MASTER CLASS: Feel less alone, work out more often There are ways to bring social engagement into a socially distanced workout.
MASTER CLASS: Treat your dog to a race, and you win a workout The Treat Race combines two things most dogs love, snacking and being outdoors.
MASTER CLASS: Experience gives us tools to resist time’s incremental larcenies After 30, adults begin to lose 3% to 5% of their muscle mass every decade. This slow decline in musculature leads to weakness and reduced mobility over time.
Kids run faster when they think about ninjas Fitness guru Matt Parrott offers another backyard workout idea to burn off children’s excess energy.
Box Hop Race gets kids exercising (parents too) Here’s a present for parents who might be running out of at-home workout ideas, a routine that's perfect for a parent and child.
MASTER CLASS: Good Morning Squat Combo gets fibers firing Most people understand that a proper warmup can make or break an exercise session. Most people know there's more to it than 5 minutes on a cardio machine. And yet, most people don’t do a proper warmup.
Older kids will put a parent through a real workout Challenge your parent or older sib to a front yard ball race.
MASTER CLASS: It's like your driveway was built for this workout It's not hard to transform a driveway from a utilitarian necessity to an exercise playground.
Garage Sale Race is a fun way to start making that home gym You can add a home gym to the garage and still have room for cars. But first, someone has to clean the garage.
MASTER CLASS: Take it outside for more peace per workout Lifting heavy stuff will always be cool. Especially if you do it in the woods.
MASTER CLASS: That outdoor workout is just a staircase away Arkansas in October is one of the most beautiful places on earth, and one that presents an incredible opportunity for outdoor exercise.
MASTER CLASS: City parks are making it easier to get a real workout outdoors Try the Gator Chomp exercise in a park.
MASTER CLASS: Take the stairs to a higher level of fitness Fitness opportunities can be found almost anywhere.
MASTER CLASS: Play like you did when you were a kid This week's activity not only provides the gift of exercise, but it is also a great way to interact with the family.
MASTER CLASS: How to avoid delayed onset muscle soreness Delayed onset muscle soreness is the worst. Here are tips for avoiding it.
MASTER CLASS: Reverse Pushup helps balance your musculature We can combat the physical challenges associated with extended sitting.
MASTER CLASS: Quadruped Raise works for almost all fitness levels This exercise could be a fun challenge for parents and kids, because most parents won't have an edge.
Kids like the challenge of simple Alternating Stair Climb This week's exercise is easy to learn and appropriate for nearly any fitness level.
MASTER CLASS: Take a progressive approach to all-around self-improvement Young father Matt Parrott says exercise isn’t the only self-improvement project that benefits from a progressive approach.
MASTER CLASS: Household chores can be cardiovascular exercise It's possible to turn almost any physical activity into a cardiovascular workout.
MASTER CLASS: Your stance changes the muscles taxed by squats Certified personal trainer Eric Godwin can do these two-stance squat raises, and so can Pinky the clay guy.
MASTER CLASS: Finding family togetherness in active outdoor play As the father of a 7-year-old, I am beginning to understand how regular exercise enhances family time.
MASTER CLASS: Ramp up your exertions Matt Parrott offers strategies for finishing a 12-week conditioning program on a high note.
MASTER CLASS: Jumping Chin-Ups in the park Every time we hop over to the playground instead of staring at a screen, take the stairs instead of the elevator, go for some deep breathing instead of a whole bag of cookies ... our readiness, physical and mental, improves.
MASTER CLASS: Slalom Jump in the park Here’s a family-friendly exercise idea for a chilly outdoor workout.
MASTER CLASS: Customizing your workout assures best results Although there may have been a time when any exercise program was good enough for modest goal achievement, today's exercisers have higher standards.
MASTER CLASS: Age is for real, y'all A few years ago, I turned 40 and thought "it's just a number" because I really hadn't faced any significant physical challenges up to that point. Well, numbers do add up.
Take a knee to lift this shoulder exercise into a different realm The cool part about this exercise is that the half-kneeling position will feel really different, a little unstable at first. But over time you master that feeling.
MASTER CLASS: A park full of rocks is a fitness find There is something primitive and workmanlike about exercising in the outdoors.
MASTER CLASS: Move past this summer’s lethargy with a 12-week plan No one would blame a person for letting go of health and fitness goals in 2020, given the circumstances. But fall is a perfect opportunity to recommit to your fitness for the next 12 weeks.
MASTER CLASS: Single Leg Superman is a super tough balance-builder for sitters For weeks 5-8 of your 12-week "goodbye, foul summer" get-in-shape program, this exercise challenges the core and back while working the shoulders.
Playing in the sprinklers makes a cool workout The first step toward family-friendly fitness time is finding something that everyone can do.
Make your family a hot tub out of a stock tank Drowned by demand, pools are scarce; but a new type of soaking apparatus has percolated to the surface: the stock tank pool.
Cats’ ear mites typically don’t infect humans ... without help Ear mites, the most common cause of ear infections in cats, are highly contagious among cats and dogs, particularly kittens and puppies.
OPINION: Book celebrates ‘Every Good Thing’ Words and images celebrate things that are true about all children and that all children ought to be told, but because of the ways this world misinterprets skin, a book that says them directly and specifically to Black boys is useful.
Roundworms are a routine hazard in a dog park A tennis ball is a perfect vehicle for spreading roundworms because it rolls around in the dirt and the muck and picks up stuff that adheres to it.
READ TO ME: A series for middle-schoolers who love animals Jasmine Green is a farmgirl who will disobey her mother to save a cute baby animal. But Mom knows what she’s talking about.
Bad things happen when you give a dog a bone Bones are harder than teeth, so whether fresh or sterilized, chew bones can break a dog's teeth.
Declawed cats suffer long after the surgery “Declawing” a cat doesn't mean clipping off its claws.
Roadtrip! OZ Art ARkanvas mural experience is a new reason to tour the state Twelve muralists embraced nine cities, crafting works of art to inspire and spark conversation, following a theme to promote "Unity."
Ghost town in the hills A few time- and weather-worn structures, foundations and walls are all that is left of Rush near the National Buffalo River in Marion County.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: State Capitol walking tour It's only a slight stretch to call the grounds of the Arkansas State Capitol in Little Rock an outdoor sculpture garden.
Active listening can lessen tension, especially in covid lockdown Paraphrasing is one of the components of active listening, a helpful technique based on simple therapeutic practices that turn away wrath.
ASK THE VET: Withhold attention to keep dog down Don't make eye contact; don't touch him, and don't speak to him. Turn your back if that makes it easier to ignore him.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: Find your Muse in Heber Springs The sign above the front door of Muse’s Country Store sets the tone for the jumble of merchandise inside: “Come share a memory!”
OPINION | READ TO ME: There is such a thing as ‘Too Many Jacks’ The outrageous escapades of Jack make reading big fun for beginners.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: Lonoke County Museum A journey to a sunny view of the past is only a day trip away to the Lonoke County Museum, on U.S. 70 in Lonoke.
Sweetener in some peanut butters can kill a dog Xylitol is very common and sometimes not listed on labels. It is found in sugar-free gums, chocolate candies, baked goods, vegan alternatives, vitamin-mineral supplements, over-the-counter and prescription medications, toothpaste, mouthwash, mints ... some peanut butters ... even some T-shirts and other clothing.
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: Nature center brims with wonders Aptly located just a robust pebble's toss from the Arkansas River, Little Rock's fish-flavored visitor attraction is open again in the River Market District behind the Museum of Discovery.
READ TO ME: When midnight strikes, they creep out of the deep A ludicrous attempt to blame someone else for writing on the walls inspires this delightfully spooky children's story.
Pinnacle Mountain Monument Trail opens 14 miles of off-road bicycling excitement The new Monument Trails at Pinnacle Mountain State Park have paths for many levels of mountain biking skill, including the eager young athletes in NICA.
Kid craft: Lure birds with a snack in a milk carton feeder Here's how to create a carton bird feeder filled with a chirp-worthy snack.
READ TO ME: There’s more to ‘Invisible Alphabet’ than meets the eye This clever ABC book won’t put Mom or Dad to sleep.
What to do when ‘Sadness Is at Your Door’ A calm, quiet book about sadness offers comfort for adults and a useful lesson in self-care for kids.
REVIEW: Energetic 'Battletoads' update has some warts "Battletoads" (2020) looks like a playable cartoon in the style of "Ren and Stimpy" or the "Fairly OddParents."
Kids can make these yummy treats Banana Pretzel Pops can be put together in a few minutes with just a handful of ingredients. The best part? The stick is edible, too!
READ TO ME: A glowing tale for middle-schoolers Everything a landmark middle-school story can be — inspired, inspiring, humorous — "A Wish in the Dark" is a story that whispers, "You are important. Everyone is important."
ARKANSAS SIGHTSEEING: 'Benton Mural' shows early history of Saline County The earliest Europeans known to have set foot in present-day Arkansas are depicted in downtown Benton's huge outdoor mural.
GAME ON: Nostalgia can't carry 'Might & Magic: Chess Royale' This game is easy to pick up and play, but it doesn't take too long to start noticing some serious flaws. The first is microtransactions.
History lessons await those who travel the Arkansas Civil Rights Trail Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site, closed for three months due to covid-19, is a riveting stop among the three dozen locations on the city's Arkansas Civil Rights Heritage Trail.
READ TO ME: Time to celebrate National Regular Average Ordinary Day A boy learns the value of having nothing special to do in this energetic picture book.
Granny’s games are blasts from the past Jacks, marbles, Annie-Annie-Over and Lemonade kept future grandparents hopping.
Bring out your marbles, Grandpa Grandparents could teach the children of the pandemic a thing or two about having fun when you all your extracurricular activities are unavailable.
10 questions to ask your grandparents If you are lucky enough to have living grandparents — or great-aunts and -uncles, elderly parents, even elderly friends — you have exclusive access to living history.
READ TO ME: Antiracist Baby is a best-seller This board book is marketed as being right for adults "who may feel hesitant or unprepared to have conversations about race and racism."
Party out front! Ideas for joyful birthday celebrations With a little creativity, parties in isolation might be the ones kids remember as the best they ever had. Here are a few ideas.
Online extracurriculars keep kids baking, dancing and learning Instead of chauffeuring kids to and from activities, parents need only power up the computer or tablet and log in.
Cooped-up crafts! Fun projects can keep kids entertained with their own creativity Children who can’t leave the yard soon decide to be happy. Art projects can help. Not just any art projects will do, however.
Soapy math adds some STEAM to playtime Here are simple and fun experiments involving math and soap — with helpful videos.
Soapy videos about washing hands Here are videos about the importance of using soap to wash our hands.
Kids can have fun with these brainy home crafts and science projects Here are some STEAM-related projects that kids won't immediately recognize as "educational."
Make a home for teeny succulents In this project suitable for children in kindergarten and older, a glass jelly jar is upcycled into a quiet bit of home decor.
One, two, make your own kazoo Making your own kazoo is as easy as one, two, three.
Grow your own salt Making a small salt farm and harvesting the salt crystals is an easy science project for elementary school kids.
Forks and spoons that say 'clunk' can also ring like chimes These simple but surprising activities can start young scientists thinking about how sound travels.
ASK THE VET: Lepto lurks in innocent looking puddles Is it OK to let a dog drink from puddles? Short answer: no.
ASK THE VET: Don't allow dogs to swim in green water A pond or creek that suddenly turns green could harbor bacteria deadly to dogs.
ASK THE VET: What to do when the puppy gets skunked Commercial de-skunking products are safe for puppies, or you could try these home remedies.
“Mira Does Her Part’ Three mothers who met while their kids attended a Little Rock elementary school wrote this book to answer children’s questions and inspire them during the pandemic.
This free digital book answers kids’ questions about covid-19 A new, free, digital picture book will help adults struggling to answer children’s repeated questions about why the world has turned upside down.
The day all the street signs quit work In this charming picture book, street signs get tired of being taken for granted.
Mermaids of the landlocked sort collide in this book In this graceful new picture book with chapters, an independent little girl befriends a rude old woman staying at the Mermaid Hotel.
READ TO ME: ‘The Stray’ is a keeper A family out for a stroll happens across a lost little lifeform in a wrecked flying saucer. He or it has jagged teeth and wiry whiskers and eyeballs on eye stalks, but also a curly tail and four dog-like legs.
READ TO ME: Reassurance for kids who live in storm country This children’s picture book delivers reassurance, and even though the scenery presents an ocean town, it's appropriate for children who live in landlocked, storm-thrashed places like Arkansas.
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