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Challenging A Child’s Mind

Experts say reading is critical to cognitive and emotional development.

Arlington mother Holly Karapetkova reserves time for reading in the schedules of her two young children. It has become such an important part of their daily routine that it is a treasured family activity. It is also vital to her children’s development says Karapetkova.

Dying of Curiosity

As I was completing last week’s column ("I Thought I Was a Goner") and thanking my oncology nurse, Ron, in the process, for the excellent care he has provided me for nearly five years now; a week after I wrote a column thanking my Certified Holistic Health Coach, Rebecca Nenner, for the health and fitness-type knowledge she has given me over those same five years; it dawned on me that perhaps my subconscious mind knew something that my conscious mind didn’t: that I should move closer to the undertaker like Radar’s Uncle Ernest did two days before he died, in the M*A*S*H episode titled "Novacaine Mutiny" from season four.

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Clifton Resident Shares Stepdaughter’s Story

Debbie Sausville’s stepdaughter Lauren died after underage drinking in 2004.

As part of Alcohol Awareness Month, Debbie Sausville of Clifton is continuing her work with Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), speaking out against underage drinking.

Teens: Most in Need of Foster Care Homes

Virginia's largest age group in need of homes is between 16 to 18-years-old.

At 54 years old, Julie wanted to be an adoptive parent for over a decade. But it wasn't until last year that she finally brought a child home.

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School of the Arts Goes Blue

In support of Autism Awareness Month, Metropolitan School of the Arts is asking all of its studio students to "go blue" now through April 30. Students who wear blue during class, Monday through Friday in April, Metropolitan School of the Arts will donate $1 for each student that wears blue, per day. Go to www.metropolitanarts.org for a full schedule of classes and registration.

"I Thought You Were a Goner"

So has said my longtime oncology nurse, Ron, who has tended to me since June, 2009. Originally, I had been assigned to a different oncology nurse, Holly, with whom I developed an immediate rapport. She cared for me from the beginning, early March 2009, when I began my every-three-week chemotherapy infusion through June, when she transferred from the Infusion Center to a different unit (oncology does take a toll). Initially, after Holly’s departure, Jane, another nurse in the unit, took me on as a patient. However, and this is where the details get sketchy, within a subsequent infusion or two, I was told one day upon my arrival at the Infusion Center, that Ron, still another oncology nurse, who I had certainly seen there previously but with whom I had minimal interaction, would be taking over for Jane – who was not transferring out – and henceforth would be my new oncology nurse. Apparently, I had been traded. For another patient? For future considerations? For a lunch-to-be-paid later? To this day, nearly five years later, I’ve never been able to uncover the truth. I got along fine with Jane; I’m a very low-maintenance patient/ person; I don’t think I did anything to precipitate such a decision. Nevertheless, a deal (my word) had been struck.

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‘Victims’ Rights Are a Necessity’

Honoring crime victims with walk, words and candlelight vigil.

Siobhan Russell was just 19 when her ex-boyfriend killed her. Ron Kirby, a noted regional transportation planner, was murdered in his Alexandria home in November by an unknown assailant.

Northern Virginia Senior Olympics Mission: Living Healthy Longer

The 2014 Northern Virginia Senior Olympics will take place Sept. 13-24 at 18 venues throughout Northern Virginia. Adults 50 years of age and over who live in one of the sponsoring jurisdictions are eligible to participate.

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Integrated Health Care Now Provided at Gartlan Center

Primary and behavioral health care clinic celebrates grand opening

The Fairfax-Falls Church Community Services Board and Alexandria Neighborhood Health Services, Inc. celebrated the integration of primary and behavior health care at the Gartlan Center at the clinic’s official grand opening on March 27.

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Keeping up with Neal Gillen

Potomac attorney, open-water swimmer doesn’t slow down.

The fog was thick in San Francisco as waves crashed against the rocks in the Pacific Ocean. It was a cold morning and 73-year-old Neal Gillen found himself fighting against the current, gulps of salt water burning his mouth. Far from his Potomac home, he was heading for Alcatraz.

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Seniors Rush to Yoga

Yoga teachers, research point to health benefits for seniors.

Shortly after 10 a.m. on any given Tuesday or Thursday morning, 84-year-old Lola Wulchin can be found slowly stretching into a downward facing dog pose or lunging into a warrior one posture. The Vienna resident has been a yoga devotee at East Meets West Yoga Center in Vienna for slightly more than two years. In fact, she credits twice-weekly, gentle yoga practice with boosting her health and improving her quality of life. "I had been bothered by a lot of neck pain from arthritis," said Wulchin. "I had seen a pain management doctor who gave me shots, I had physical therapy, but I still had neck pain and very little range of motion."

How to Age in Place Safely

Local experts suggest techniques and programs that can help seniors stay in their homes longer.

The AARP reports that nearly 80 percent of adults age 65 and older want to remain in their current homes as long as possible. That population is growing. According to the Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration on Aging, the population 65 years or older numbered 39.6 million in 2009. By 2030, that number will grow to about 72.1 million. While people are living longer and healthier lives, there are still barriers to aging in place, including medication management, self-care, socialization and transportation. But there are innovative strategies and initiatives to help combat these roadblocks.

2014 Generation-to-Generation Gala

Senior Services of Alexandria hosted their annual Generation-to-Generation Gala last Saturday evening at the Mark Hilton in Alexandria. The 2014 honorees were Patty Moran and her daughter Kate along with Lonnie Rich and Marcia Call and their daughter Sara Rich.

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Accessibility on a Different Level

New lower-level in-law suite becomes primary living space.

How can you tell when in an-law suite is outperforming the usual requirements? Well, for starters, when the owners themselves decide to occupy the new accommodation as their primary living space.

Fairfax County Calendar

For those looking to fill their calendar with some home-brewed, Fairfax County fun stuff (read: entertainment and diversion), The Connection's Fairfax County Entertainment Calendar has many options: weekend jaunts and larks; date night inspiration; winter-to-spring fun; day-long festivals and events; art-outings; family fun-and-learning fusions; plays and shows; beyond-Small Business Saturday local shopping and bazaars; markets of handcrafted wares; music; 1Ks to marathons... the list goes on. If you know of an event not listed in our entertainment calendar, email it to south@connectionnewspapers.com for happenings in south Fairfax County or north@connectionnewspapers.com for entertainment in the northern parts of the county.

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