November 2012

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live with family Ask Doctor Mom Reality check: Phones and driving just don't mix By Dr. Kari Hegeman Until 2007, I, of course, knew that people were injured in motor vehicle accidents. It just never sunk in how they could die in an instant. March 5, 2007 was the day that my mother was killed instantly as she pulled onto an old country highway in front of an oncom- ing truck. She was talking on her cell phone. To me. Best Birthday Blowouts 1. Rocky Rococo Nothing says "birthday party" quite like pizza and arcade games. With pizzerias devoted to accommodating parties, Rocky's organizes the entire affair—from invites and balloons, to loot bags, cookies and more. 2. Pump it Up Your birthday boy or girl will jump for joy (literally) at this inflatable dreamland. An ideal spot for a rowdy party, the staff makes it easy by guiding kids from ample time in a playroom to a party room where they can have a feast then open presents. 3. Chuck E. Cheese A classic locale for a high-energy party, Chuck E. Cheese boasts an endless array of games and activities. With party packages 26 BRAVA Magazine November 2012 WINNER READERS' CHOICE BIRTHDAY VENUE Rocky Rococo Runners Up: Pump it Up Where do BRAVA readers go when they want to give their kid the gift of an awesome birthday bash? Here are your top picks Chuck E. Cheese that make the day go smoothly and appear- ances by Chuck E. himself, it's a birthday party your little one will thank you for. 4. Henry Vilas Zoo Lions and tigers and birthdays, oh my! No matter the age, friends are sure to find fun at a zoo party. Reserve space in the visi- tor's center or under the main tent for cake and presents, and then explore the zoo for a roaring good time. 5. Madison Children's Museum With the aid of museum "Funstigators," the birthday kid can pick from themed parties such as "dazzling dinosaurs" or "astronaut adventures," for an event full of unique activities, before letting loose and running wild through the museum. In 2010, the National Highway Traffic Safety Commission estimated that "distracted driving" was the cause in crashes that killed 3,092 people and injured more than 400,000. And it's a tragedy that affects all walks of life— namely children. After infancy, the No. 1 cause of death for our children is accidents and inju- ries. That is still true after age 16, and almost wholly becomes motor vehicle accidents. Distracted driving statistics are becoming more abysmal by the day. It seems that as cell phones get smarter, we are getting dumber about driving. While much of this is likely to worsen until we have laws in place to prevent it, we can still take steps to change our own behavior and influence the behavior of our children. We need to protect our children by modeling excellent driving behavior. Teens (and adults) should be appalled at their friend who tries to text while driv- ing, and even be moved to intervene. We talk to our children about all sorts of unsafe scenarios. Why not talk to them about the biggest threat to their existence? In addition to physical safe- ty, their existence includes the peace of mind that they have not injured or killed another person just to check their Facebook page, text a friend, or even call you, while driving. I hope we can all continue to echo the message that whatever it is we're all in a hurry to check on our phones—it can wait. Dr. Kari Hegemon is a pediatrician at Dean Clinic and mother of seven. WINNER READERS' CHOIC READERS'

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