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List View - Druid City Living, Tuscaloosa's premier community newspaper. - Druid City Living, Tuscaloosa's premier community newspaper. Thu, 16 Aug 2018 23:59:20 -0500 MYOB en-gb UA Athletics Unveils "The Crimson Standard," and Major Renovations are Planned to Athletic Facilities Alabama Coach Nick Saban and his wife Ms. Terry donated $1 million to The Crimson Standard.

The Alabama Department of Athletics announced on Thursday, Aug. 16, its 10-year, $600 million capital initiative, The Crimson Standard, which is designed to comprehensively elevate the student-athlete experience, recruiting efforts and the overall game-day experience for all Crimson Tide fans. The initiative includes major renovations to Bryant-Denny Stadium, Coleman Coliseum, and several other athletic facilities.

"We spent the last year and a half looking at our history and analyzing where we are currently to help create a vision for the future that enhances Alabama Athletics to improve the student-athlete and the fan experience," Director of Athletics Greg Byrne said. "That vision is what led us to The Crimson Standard: A Capital Initiative for Alabama Athletics. We have a mission to build and maintain a program that achieves academic success and wins championships in all sports by educating and developing the best student-athletes and by supporting and retaining outstanding coaches.

"Our core values also begin with a commitment to the total support of the educational, athletic and personal development of all student-athletes. We have been on the forefront in investing in student-athlete development, academically, in life skills, career development, mental health, safety, nutrition and many other areas. That being said, evolution of facilities is critical as we continue to move our program forward to support the levels we expect them to perform at and compete for championships.

"This was a process that involved our student-athletes, our letter-winners, our coaches, staff, University leadership and our fans. It is a 10-year, $600 million plan, which we have broken down into three phases, and while you will only see a few areas highlighted in the video, understand The Crimson Standard is a comprehensive initiative that will positively impact nearly all of our teams and venues."

To date, nearly $143 million has been committed to The Crimson Standard, $1 million of which was gifted by Alabama Head Football Coach Nick Saban and his wife, Ms. Terry, at Thursday's press conference.

"To reinvest in the players and the programs here to make Alabama's athletic programs continue to be great in the future is a sacrifice we all need to make," said Saban. "We all want to have success. We can't get complacent about what we've been able to accomplish in the past. We have to look forward to what we need to do in the future. We're very excited about this Crimson initiative for the future, and on behalf of all the players, all the coaches, all the great relationships that we've been able to develop here at The University of Alabama over the last 11 years, Terry and I would like to support this initiative and donate a $1 million gift to The Crimson Standard and the future of Alabama Athletics, and in doing that, thank everyone for their support that they've given us."

Included in Phase 1 are several enhancements to Bryant-Denny Stadium with the renovation and expansion of multiple seating areas. In addition, renovations will be made to the lobby and football locker room at the Mal M. Moore Athletic Facility and a new Sports Science Center will be added. Rhoads Stadium and the Jerry Pate Golf Complex are also expected to be upgraded as part of the first phase.

"Today, in addition to remembering the history that we have, we also focus on the future," said Alabama President Dr. Stuart Bell. "We focus on looking forward. We focus on taking that step to move forward with a sharp vision that really does set The Crimson Standard as that future bar that we are looking for, and it will define how fans experience, how they participate and how they become a part of Alabama Athletics. This plan is all Alabama. It is second to none, and you've already heard that from our AD , and our Coach, and again, we know a lot of people emulate what we do here at The University of Alabama, and certainly we are going to set the bar to move away from our other competitors."

Another key component of Thursday's reveal included the renovation of Coleman Coliseum, which is part of the Phase 2 plan. The renovation will maintain the historic look, however it will be completely modernized with a brand new interior and a variety of seating options. New women's basketball and gymnastics team locker rooms will be built on the south side of the arena along with new men's and women's basketball offices.

"Greg has a great vision," said Alabama Head Men's Basketball Coach Avery Johnson. "He has great leadership. Obviously this is subject to Board approval and Dr. Bell, but we feel we have a really good model in place to get us in the end zone and make this a reality. I'm fired up about it. I'm fired up about what it's (Coleman Coliseum) going to look like, what it's going to do for recruiting, what it's going to do for fan experience."

"We're excited," said Alabama Head Women's Basketball Coach Kristy Curry. "When you look at who we are recruiting against, when you look at the fan experiences, when you look at the student experiences, I've had a chance to be in three difference leagues – the Big Ten, the Big 12 and now the SEC. This is what we need, and as we move into the future, to compete in all those areas we've got to have this. We're pretty fired up. We're really thankful to be a part of it, and the move back to Coleman."

For more information and premium seating options, visit

]]> (Super User) Sports n Outdoor Thu, 16 Aug 2018 23:17:59 -0500
The Mommy Chronicles: A Few Tips to Prepare for those Milestones, Mom Beaux William (right) and his friends (from left to right), Sam and Silas Barrett, pose with an astronaut on the first morning of camp. Church of the Highlands’ annual summer camp, “Summer Blast,” had a 2018 theme of “Outta this World.”

As a child, I loved the movie Heavy Weights. And even though I was slim from competitive swimming (the movie is about kids at a “fat camp”), I absolutely wanted to go. Cabin living, swimming in an icky, green-colored lake, and staying awake all night with friends, sneaking sweets we’ve hidden away from the establishment? Yes, please! 

My five-year-old recently went to camp for the first time. Thankfully, my friend and neighbor allowed her five-year-old to attend as well, and although it was only day camp, I think we both had our doubts. Are the boys safe? Are they old enough? Amplifying my worry, I noticed one of our boys' counselors had braces! I’m only 33, but goodness, seeing that made me feel 65. 

While I’m thankful we’re not at the point where overnight camp is an option, I’ve come to terms that with every milestone he encounters, there will be a huge tug in my heart that comes along with every new thing my son experiences. When the doors to the auditorium opened, and I watched him find his counselor (after running back a few times for hugs he knew I needed). As he bounced and danced with a friend, I left… and I drove away wondering if I was ready for all the “firsts” we will encounter over the next few years. (Insert tears here.)

How should we prepare for our children’s milestones, whether they be camp, school, graduation, or something else entirely? Don’t worry mama, here are tips for you…

Understand that motherhood is like continuing ed. Five years in, I’m still learning and evolving as a mom. Motherhood routinely tests your patience, your resilience, and your temperament. As your children grow and reach individual milestones, make sure to keep the dialogue open. Teach them as you learn, and stay open-minded – so you’ll learn from the change, too. Also, never allow your child’s age to trick you into thinking you cannot have a serious or profound conversation that benefits you both. 

Kelly Ship, mother to 16-year-old Jackson says that prayer plays a big role in preparing for her son’s milestones. “Kevin and I both speak very honestly to him about the responsibility that comes with new freedoms,” she said. “I even made him sign a contract before he started driving.”

Banish worry and accept fear. Worry inhabits us when we dwell on what might happen. We’ve all been there: Will my child have friends at school? Who will sit with my child at lunch? Will the new teacher be firm, but also loving and kind? 

These are legitimate concerns, but once worry takes over, the concerns become preoccupations that are more harmful than helpful. Fear, on the other hand, is great to have as a parent. Fearful impulses can protect our children from situations and people that may cause them danger. 

Welcome change. Your child’s milestone means they’re entering a new stage of development that will affect the adult they’ll become. Welcome the growth and what you’ve taught them!

Marlena Rice is a busy mom and writer who lives in Tuscaloosa with her husband, Rod, and their son, Beaux William. Check out her blog at  

Family Thu, 16 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0500
Bama Art House Fall Film Series Begins Soon Bama Art House Fall Film Series Begins Soon

The Bama Art House Film Series Fall 2018 will open on Aug. 28 and will feature five screenings.  A program of The Arts Council of Tuscaloosa, this series will feature categories including biography, drama, romance, and comedy.

Screenings will take place at the Bama Theatre on Tuesday nights at 7:30 p.m. with the box office opening at 6:30 p.m. and doors/Bama Bar at 6:45 p.m.

There will be no film screening on Sept. 25 with the final film shown on Oct. 2.

Single Tickets will be priced at $8 general, $7 seniors & students and $6 Arts Council Members and will be available at the box office. Discount Punch Card Tickets ($60) will also be available prior to screenings and will be good for any 10 Bama Art House films.

Patrons can visit to view the list of films, details and accompanying trailers.

August 28: RBG

September 4: The Rider

September 11: The Leisure Seeker

September 18: Disobedience

September 25: Bye Week, no film

October 2: Manhattan Short Film Festival 2018

The mission of the Bama Art House series is to bring current and contemporary independent film to West Alabama, transforming the historic Bama Theatre into a cinematic art house.

The Bama Theatre is located at 600 Greensboro Avenue in Downtown Tuscaloosa. For more information about The Arts Council or Bama Theatre, patrons should LIKE the Facebook page “The Arts Council – Bama Theatre – Cultural Arts Center” and follow tuscarts on Twitter. Call 205-758-5195 or visit for further information.


]]> (Super User) Community Wed, 15 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0500
Exchange Club Awards Community Grants to Area Organizations Grant recipients are: Seated L-R: Nisa Moore, Junior Achievement; Jean Rykaczewski, WA Food Bank; and Kathryn Adams, Boys & Girls Club. Standing, L-R: Vickie Kerr, Caring Days; Larry Deavers, Family Counseling Services; Bill Gosselin, Boy Scouts; and Bill Shafer, Salvation Army. >

The Exchange Club of Tuscaloosa Foundation awarded Community Grants to seven local organizations at the Exchange Club’s August 2nd meeting.  

The Foundation has awarded grants annually since 1993. The combined total amount for grants over 25 years is $374,000.


]]> (Super User) Community Wed, 15 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0500
Why Do Divorce Rates Spike Following Summer and the Holidays? Why Do Divorce Rates Spike Following Summer and the Holidays?

Divorce rates tend to spike in the weeks following the Christmas holidays and during August, following the summer vacation season. Have you ever wondered why?

A spike in divorces may be due to couples wanting to protect their children or other family from their marital problems during important family get-togethers or vacations. For some, their family vacation during the summer may be their final attempt to save their marriage. There is also the additional stress on the marriage that comes from having extensive involvement with extended family, or from coordinating the family vacation, which can exacerbate an already stressful relationship. 

Making a hasty decision to divorce following a stressful family experience is likely more reactive and emotionally driven, than proactive and carefully considered. Knowing that the stress of holidays, or a family vacation, is likely to add to the pressures on the marriage, it is best to hold off on making any final decisions while under the additional stress.   

It is normal for holidays and vacations to fail to live up to our expectations. Even though it’s common to experience disappointment along with the joys of the seasons, our hopefulness that things will be better this year often creates a sense of optimism that overlooks previous stressors. To help reduce the effects these stressors might have, it’s important to think about what normally generates the stress, and plan ways, as a couple, to help reduce those during family activities. 

Close, continuous, and unstructured time for days on end, even with family members you enjoy most, is stressful. These can lead to emotionally charged situations. Because the stress of a holiday or vacation season can expose any weaknesses or unresolved issues in your relationship, it may be best to build in some kind of “safety valves” into your plans to let one another decompress when stress strikes.   

A proactive plan may include prearranged signals to indicate to each other when you need a time-out, and an agreement to allow the other person to retreat from one another or other family members for a short time. A “short time” doesn’t mean avoiding everyone for hours or days, but taking the time you really need to gather your thoughts and emotions and regain your composure. Total avoidance creates its own kind of stress on the marriage and on the family. 

The important point is to remember not to make any major life decisions if your ability to think clearly is compromised by your emotional reaction to stress. If you plan ahead going into these family situations, and allow one another the space you each need to be alone and decompress, you can increase the chances of enjoying the pleasures the holidays or vacation season can bring, while minimizing the stressors. If you can both focus more on the positive aspects of what you have as a family, you increase the chances that you can approach your marriage with the renewed optimism and energy you will need to make other necessary changes. 

Larry Deavers is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and Executive Director of Family Counseling Service in Tuscaloosa. 205.752.2504 


Community Tue, 14 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0500
Need a Night Out? Enjoy Some Quality Time Without Ever Leaving Town The Brass Tap, located in Tuscaloosa’s Midtown Village, features a full food and drink menu that gives you plenty of options.

Romance doesn’t come easy in the summer. Whether it's hectic travel or work schedules, kids that seem to be around all the time, or the sweltering Alabama heat, chances are your relationship could use a little TLC. Here’s just a few ways you and your partner can relax, refresh, and recharge this month.

Catch a Show

What better way to enjoy some of the warm nights of summer than with live music? The Amp hosts the highly-anticipated Keith Urban concert on August 26. Urban will be joined by up-and-coming artist Kelsea Ballerini, who has taken the country music scene by storm. Feeling a little old school? August 20, Def Leppard and Journey will be just a short drive away at the BJCC. The tour has proven to be a great time for classic rock fans, young and old. 

Switch-up the Classic Dinner Date

More than likely, your go-to date night consists of a select few restaurants kept on rotation. The best way to turn this date night classic into a special memory is to try a place that’s brand new, or at least new to you. There’s plenty of unique options popping up around Tuscaloosa, so you can stay close to home, including The Brass Tap in Midtown Village.

With an atmosphere that’s cozy, but not too serious, amazing food, and endless drink options, Brass Tap is a perfect date locale for any relationship. Go on one of their Bingo or trivia nights and join in some friendly competition, or you can grab one of their many games for just the two of you. Either way, you and your partner can spend hours here without even realizing it. Whether you are on an awkward first date in need of an ice breaker, or you’re two long time lovebirds looking for something different, this is the place for you.

Located just nine miles northwest of Tuscaloosa and Northport, Lake Lurleen State Park offers boat rentals.

Take it Outside

Take advantage of Tuscaloosa’s extended summer weather and its multitude of beautiful outdoor spots by taking your date outdoors. Pick one of Tuscaloosa’s beautiful lakes and make a mini-vacation out of the afternoon. 

You can find swimming access all around Tuscaloosa, but if you’re looking for even more, try out Lake Lurleen State Park. While relaxing on the beach and enjoying the safe, designated swimming area, you might almost forget you're still in Tuscaloosa. For even more adventure, the park offers low-cost rentals of a variety of boats and paddle boards. A romantic date out in canoe or paddle boat has made its way into more than a few classic love stories (ahem The Notebook ahem), and you can recreate the magic right here at home. And it there’s a torrential downpour? Again, see: The Notebook

Sip some great, local craft beer while admiring Druid City Brewing’s ever-changing, but always interesting chalkboard art.

Try Local Craft Beer

There has been a definite rise in popularity of craft beer over the past few years, and it's no surprise the unique community here in Tuscaloosa took on this trend very early. 

“I believe we’ve been successful because we provide a slightly different atmosphere,” said Elliott Roberts, co-owner of Druid City Brewing. “We focus on live music, local beer, and creating an atmosphere that’s kind of quirky. I think a lot of the other breweries try to do that as well.” 

Tuscaloosa is home to several breweries that provide local brews to bars across the state.  If you haven’t tried one out yet, consider it added to your “must-do” list. With award-winners like Druid City Brewing in town, this is a trend that’s here to stay. 

Community Tue, 14 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0500
DCL Weekly: Community Calendar of Events DCL Weekly: Community Calendar of Events

Here’s wishing all our Druid City Living readers a great week, filled with all kinds of outstanding local events. Get out, get involved, and above all else: Have fun!

And remember: If you’d like to have your event added to our online weekly calendar, just email us at We’re happy to add anything you’d like to announce.

Enjoy your week, T-Town.

OLLI@UA Summer Kickoff and Annual Meeting: Aug. 13, 2-4 p.m. Bryant Conference Center, Tuscaloosa. Enjoy refreshments while discovering everything OLLI has to offer. Also, there will be a brief review of the year's accomplishments as well as board elections. OLLI@UA provides mature adults, 50+, with social, educational, and travel opportunities. For more information, visit or call (205) 348-6482. 

United Way Campaign Kickoff Luncheon: Aug. 14, 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. Bryant Conference Center, UA campus. Meet and hear from campaign volunteers and learn West Alabama’s fundraising goal for the annual United Way campaign. For more information, visit or email  

Chamber Business After Hours: Aug. 14, 5-7 p.m. Bryant Bank, Tuscaloosa. For more information, visit 

Yeah Yeah Yeah Yeah 5K and Fun Run: Aug. 18, 7 a.m. Government Plaza, Downtown Tuscaloosa. Join honorary race starter Scott Cochran for this 5K race through downtown to raise awareness for Cystic Fibrosis. Funds raised benefit The Thomas Plott Foundation. For more information, visit

5th Annual Alabama Veterans Reunion: Aug. 18, various locations in Tuscaloosa. This is a weekend filled with activities and events to honor those in Alabama who’ve served our country. Many of the events are free. For more information, or to register, visit 

Weird Contest Day at CHOM: Aug. 18, 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Children’s Hands-On Museum, downtown Tuscaloosa. Compete for prizes in weird and wacky contests throughout CHOM. For more information, visit or call (205) 349-4235. 

Jim Ezell and Carolyn Breckinridge Book Signing: Aug. 18, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Barnes & Noble Booksellers, Tuscaloosa. Local authors (and DCL contributors) Jim Ezell (“The Cistern”) and Carolyn Breckinridge (“Tuscaloosa Moon,” “Tuscaloosa Boneyard,” “Kaleidoscope Jane and Other Stories”) will be signing copies of their novels. Come out and meet them!

8th Annual Johnny Shines Blues Festival: Aug. 18. All day at Band of Brothers Brewing Co., Tuscaloosa. Food, drinks, and lots of blues music bands are participating in this rain-or-shine event honoring the legacy of Johnny Shines.  


Cancer Wellness Support Group: Aug. 21, Noon-1 p.m. Wellness Room, Manderson Cancer Center, Tuscaloosa.  Current and former patients of the Manderson Cancer Center (and their caregiver) who have been diagnosed with cancer, during all phases of their treatment and recovery, are welcome. Please RSVP to Jana Smith, Outreach Coordinator (205) 759-7877. 

25th Annual CAPS Night Light Golf Tournament: Aug. 24, Tall Pines Golf Course, Tuscaloosa. This four-person scramble tournament benefits Child Abuse Prevention Services (CAPS). Golfers will play nine holes before dark, enjoy a BBQ dinner, and play nine holes in the dark with glow in the dark golf balls. There will be door prizes, a grand prize, and more. For more information, visit or call (205) 758-1159. 

Hospice of West Alabama Casino Cabaret: Aug. 24, 6-9 p.m. North River Yacht Club, Tuscaloosa. This fun-filled evening, benefiting Hospice of West Alabama, includes blackjack, roulette, and other gaming tables. For more information, including tickets, visit  

14th Annual Walk to Remember: Aug. 25, 9:30-11 a.m. Inside University Mall, Tuscaloosa. This annual walk honors anyone affected by Alzheimer’s and other memory disorders, as well as their caregivers. Money raised supports the Caring Days programs. For more information, call (205) 752-6840 or visit   

Let’s Go Fly a Kite Day at CHOM: Aug. 25, 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Children’s Hands-On Museum, downtown Tuscaloosa. Design your own kite to take home. Add your own personal touch to the new “Children of CHOM” kite. For more information, visit or call (205) 349-4235. 

Keith Urban “Graffiti U World Tour” with Kelsea Ballerini: Aug. 26, 7:30 p.m. Tuscaloosa Amphitheater. Tickets available via For more information, visit, call the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater Box Office at (205) 248-5280 or charge by phone at (800) 745-3000. 


Tuscaloosa Farmer’s Market: Saturdays, 7 a.m.-noon.; Tuesdays 3-6 p.m. Tuscaloosa River Market, 1900 Jack Warner Blvd, Tuscaloosa. Shop for fresh produce, grass fed beef, baked goods, cheeses and more. Buy fresh, buy local. For more information, visit or call (205) 248-5295. 

Northport Farmer’s Market: Saturdays, 6 a.m. to noon, 4150 5th Street, Northport. For more information, visit 

DCH Regional Medical Center Support Groups

Cancer Wellness Support Group meets monthly from Noon-1 p.m. in the Wellness Room at the Manderson Cancer Center. We welcome current and former patients of the Manderson Cancer Center (and a caregiver) who have been diagnosed with cancer, during all phases of their treatment and recovery. Reservations are requested. For more information and to RSVP, call Jana Smith, Outreach Coordinator, at 205-759-7877.

HeART: Healing with the Arts free art workshop is open to all current and former Manderson Cancer Center patients, family members and caregivers. Workshops are held twice weekly, Wednesdays and Thursdays, from 1-4 p.m., giving participants an opportunity to use art to express their feelings through creative expression. All art supplies are provided. No cost. The Art Gallery has countless paintings displayed for sale and open to the public. All proceeds from these sales go to fund supplies for the art room and DCH Foundation’s Help and Hope Fund.

IMPACT Identifying Many Positives After Cancer Treatment meets monthly from 11 a.m.-1 p.m., typically at First Methodist Church Tuscaloosa. IMPACT aims to provide support, information, education, and community service to benefit themselves, other breast cancer survivors, and their families. Reservations are requested. For more information and to RSVP, call Jana Smith, Outreach Coordinator, at 205-759-7877.

Look Good… Feel Better is a free program sponsored in partnership with American Cancer Society for women who are undergoing cancer treatment. Come learn how to deal with the changes in your skin and appearance. Attendees receive a wonderful collection of skin care and makeup products. Classes meet monthly from 1-3 p.m. in the Manderson Cancer Center Wellness Room. Call 205-759-7877 for more information or visit

Prostate Cancer Support Group meets Noon-1 p.m. every other month in the Wellness Room at the Manderson Cancer Center. Current and former patients of the Manderson Cancer Center (and a caregiver) are welcome. This group is offered to provide community-based education and support to help men and their families cope with prostate cancer. Reservations are requested. For more information and to RSVP, call Jana Smith, Outreach Coordinator, at 205-759-7877.

STRETCH is a unique exercise and support program offered by the Lewis and Faye Manderson Cancer Center and UA Recreation Center for women who have had a breast cancer diagnosis. “Stretching” can begin weeks after surgical procedures. Patients must obtain physician approval. Classes meet twice weekly on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 9 a.m. at the UA Student Recreation Center. For more information, call Katrina Lewis, Patient Navigator, at 205-330-3647.

]]> (Super User) Community Mon, 13 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0500
CSP Spotlight: How to Cope (and Help!) When Your Child Whines CSP Spotlight: How to Cope (and Help!) When Your Child Whines

Whining can be like nails on a chalkboard. Here’s why whining happens—and how you can help. 

Why do children whine?

  • It’s the best they can do in the moment. Young children are not yet able to self-regulate very well (or calm their feelings and bodies so they can respond to stressors in appropriate ways). Sometimes whining signals when a child is beginning to lose control and needs an adult to help her calm down. What to do? Cuddle your child and offer gentle comfort to help her begin to regulate.
  • Toddlers don’t have the words they need. Young children often lack the words to communicate their feelings and needs (I’m sad about sharing or I’m too warm in this sweater!). Whining is sometimes a child’s best effort at communication. What to do? Take a moment to be a detective—what might the whining mean? Look for the child’s need and try to meet it. Then model what he can say to have his needs met in more acceptable ways.
  • They are overwhelmed or run down. Children often whine when their emotional gas tank is on empty. Think about the last time your child ate or slept (and offer one or both). Did she have a tough day? Has she been dealing with a lot of changes lately? What to do: Offer soothing. A child who is overwhelmed needs compassion and a parent’s help to feel calm again.

Whining can get us charged up. It always helps if we calm ourselves before responding. Take a deep breath and then act. If whining is at an all-time high (when your child is between 2 and 4 years old), you may need some additional strategies:

  • Name your child’s feelings. People can’t be talked out of what they feel. It works much better to recognize their experience. By naming how children are feeling, we let them know we see and understand. (This is true even when his upset seems silly to us—like having to wear his panda shirt instead of his striped shirt.) A parent might say, “You are feeling sad. You wanted your striped shirt today, and it’s dirty. That’s hard.”
  • Get closer and offer comfort. Children need to feel close and connected to their parents and caregivers to function well. Often, getting closer to a whining child can calm her. This doesn’t mean that you are “giving in.” It means you are a great parent who is giving your child what she needs: “Your voice tells me you might need a snuggle.”
  • Try a silly game, a distraction, or a choice. Use a funny voice, pretend to be a rabbit, or do some silly fake sneezes. Distract a child by pointing to the garbage truck outside. Or offer a choice: “No cookies, but would you like cheese or a banana?” These little tricks can sometimes shift a child’s mood.
  • Change the story you’re telling yourself. So often we hear whining and judge our child’s behavior (as spoiled or demanding). But the way we see a behavior shapes how we respond to it. The truth is that whining is completely normal for toddlers. Knowing this behavior is normal, we can respond from a place of compassion instead of from a place of anger and frustration.

And one important strategy to use when your child isn’t whining: Pay attention to the times when your child is able to express a need without whining: “You were hungry and asked for a snack in a calm and kind voice—thank you!” or even someday: “Thanks for keeping your cool when I said ‘no.’”

]]> (Super User) Family Mon, 13 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0500
DCL Pet of the Week: Meet Bella DCL Pet of the Week: Meet Bella

Talk about someone who doesn’t act their age! Miss Bella is a super dog in great shape for her age. And she’s this week’s Humane Society of West Alabama Pet of the Week!

This female 9-year-old golden retriever/Labrador loves to run and play. Bella is a big dog, weighing 48 pounds, and has a smooth golden and cream coat. Bella was an owner-surrendered dog who liked to escape from her backyard. 

Bella is such a sweet, loving dog. She loves people and children and will tolerate anything. She has nice energy and loves to go trail walking and running. She would make a great workout partner.

Bella would NOT do well in an apartment. Alas, she has always been an outside dog and likes that. She was in some type of accident as a very young puppy and her bladder has given her problems since. She will “leak” some urine every now and then (that is why the previous owners kept her outside). She would make a great family dog for someone who wants a yard buddy. Bella is used to having a companion dog and gets along well with other dogs.  

Bella is doing great in her crate at night. She is getting much better about going into it and does not have any accidents in the crate, so she is good for bringing inside at night. She would probably welcome being inside with you during the day and at night as well!

Please call 205-554-0011 or visit to request an appointment to meet our available animals.

]]> (Super User) Community Sat, 11 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0500
Lake Living: Where the Heck Did the Summer Go? Infuse water with fresh Alabama grown berries for a refreshing break from the late-summer heat.

We have five weeks in August. Don’t panic. Break it down!

With summer at an end, you will already be focusing on schedules. Schedule time for yourself. Use week one to pack in the things you wanted to do this summer and didn’t get around to, like badminton, croquet, or some corn hole in the backyard. Spend that day on the lake. The kids won’t remember the dozens of days on Snapchat or in their beds, just that one that you made everyone get out and interact. Your time together doesn’t have to be fancy, just don’t let it slip away with the summer of 2018. 

After July wrapped up, I decided to focus on finding things that I love about being American and using things “Made In the USA.” Week two, see if you and the family can identify some. I found there were some challenges, but also some great things, like locally grown produce, fresh Alabama shrimp (coastal, and right in our own backyard), and towels – and we drove cars made in the USA.

By week three, school is back in full swing. Ahh. Can you hear the silence? Embrace it, especially if yours has been a jam-packed summer. Start making some changes on the home-front to re-discover and nurture your soul. Set up your bedroom as a place of refuge. I don’t know why it took me a year to nail up (yes, when he was out of town I sure did) a blackout curtain! I’m sleeping like a baby this week. Infuse water with fresh Alabama grown berries, lemons… whatever makes you feel healthy. Keep icy water by yours and the kids beds in one of the pretty pitchers you save for some special occasion. Stick a flower from the yard in one of those "love" coke bottles. Light a candle, close your door, and peruse all the magazines that you didn’t have time to read while schlepping kids to activities.

Week four: Yes, work is calling, but you can also make changes there. On your desk, add essential oils, or a candle. The smell of lemon increases alertness. Rosemary helps fight mental fatigue. Cinnamon improves focus. Peppermint brings clear thinking. Keep that water available at work to get the 8 cups a day you neglected to get over the summer. A box or tray with dark chocolate and nuts within reach will help keep the mind clear. Add some music, some natural light, and watch the end of the year be the best part yet in the office. 

The last week begins with a full moon. Make a date to catch a glimpse of it every single night this week, until it leads you into Labor Day – your bonus for another chance for all things summertime.

It’s still your summer. Make it a memorable one!


Allison Adams is a mom of four and a Realtor with Lake Homes Realty serving Lake Tuscaloosa. For comments, email  

Home n Garden Thu, 09 Aug 2018 00:00:00 -0500