Prep Your Garden for Fall

We may still be in the midst of
long, hot summer days but fall
is just around the corner...

read more

Plan a Girls' Night

Regardless of our age and our stage
in life, there is one consistent need
that we women have...

read more

Back to School Means
Back to Sleep

For most kids, summertime means
lazy mornings spent sleeping in...

read more

Prep Your Garden for Fall


We may still be in the midst of long, hot summer days but fall is just around the corner. If you've spent much of the summer tending to your garden you don't want to let your green thumb success fall by the wayside once autumn arrives. Here are some tips on prepping your garden for fall.

Take Notes:

Before your flowers and vegetables are a distant memory, take a moment to study what worked and didn't work in your garden this year. Write it down and make notes on what you want to do differently (or the same) next year.

Clean Up:

Remove debris like dried leaves or stems from your planting areas. Using a rake to fluff up your mulch will help water reach deeper into the soil.

Tend to Your Tropicals:

Some tropical plants and flowers need special care and attention when cold weather comes. While that is still a few months away, you want to take the time now to develop a plan for such plants - determine whether you will move them or cover once the first frost arrives.

Plant Fall Flowers:

Some flowers like mums or pansies can still thrive in the fall. Look for open areas in your garden or yard and fill those spots with some colorful fall flowers.

Replant Perennials:

You can encourage new growth in your perennials by dividing them and replanting them throughout your garden or yard. This will give your landscape a new look for fall!

Trim Your Trees:

Before your flowers and vegetables are a distant memory, take a moment to study what worked and didn't work in your garden this year. Write it down and make notes on what you want to do differently (or the same) next year.

Take Notes:

Examine your trees and tall shrubs and trim any branches that look dead or overgrown. This will prevent these limbs from falling and causing damage during winter storms.

Prep Your Tools:

Fall is a great time to clean your gardening tools and throw out the ones that are no longer useful. Also make a list of what tools you would like to add to your arsenal and watch for sales this fall or early next spring.

This month all Care Begins With Me members are automatically entered into a drawing for a $100 gift card to Green Acres Nursery & Supply.

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Plan a Great Girls' Night Out!


Regardless of our age and our stage in life, there is one consistent need that we women have - the need to surround ourselves with great friends! And what better way to celebrate and nurture our friendships than to plan a great Girls' Night Out. Obviously we believe that one of the best Girls' Night Out opportunities around is happening on Tuesday, Oct. 8 - Dignity Health's Care Begins With Me, Sacramento's premier event for women. While we hope that you will gather a group of girlfriends and attend on Oct. 8, you can turn just about any activity or event into a great night of bonding with your friends. Here are some tips to help with the planning.

Get a Good Mix:

One of the key factors to a fun and successful night out with girlfriends is getting just the right mix of personalities. While it's always fun to enjoy time with your longtime gang, try to mix it up sometimes - if you have a good friend from work maybe introduce her to your buddy from the gym. Getting to know new friends is easier when you are enjoying a fun event or activity together.

Know Your Audience:

If you're planning a night out at a bar or club, be sensitive to friends who don't drink or don't enjoy being in that atmosphere. If your evening includes a concert, make sure the musical genre appeals to your whole group. Conversely, if you're planning a quiet night at a pottery painting studio, understand that your bar-hopping, club-obsessed friend may not be that into it.

Plan Ahead to be Safe:

Before your flowers and vegetables are a distant memory, take a moment to study what worked and didn't work in your garden this year. Write it down and make notes on what you want to do differently (or the same) next year.

Think Out of the Box:

While a great Girls' Night Out is really all about the friends, the event or activity can dictate the mood of the evening too. Experiencing something new with good friends is a wonderful opportunity to strengthen bonds and make memories. Get creative with your plans: consider a belly dancing class; a self-defense class; an overnight camping trip - no kids or hubbies allowed; a cooking class; find a volunteer opportunity that you can do together; have a craft night at your home; or just invite friends to your house for a couple hours of wine and conversation after the kids go to bed.

Be Budget Aware:

Know what your friends feel comfortable spending on a night out - if you are unsure, ask. Nothing is worse than heading out with friends only to be surprised by the cost of the evening. If money is tight for some of the group, keep it simple. Focus on the together time rather than an extravagant activity. Some of the best memories are made while simply sitting around chatting with friends.

Register now for the ultimate Girls' Night Out - the annual Care Begins With Me event, to be held Tuesday, Oct. 8. Register by August 15 to get preferred seating!

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Back to School Means Back to Sleep!


For most kids, summertime means lazy mornings spent sleeping in, nights spent staying up late, and generally living without a schedule. Unfortunately, that summertime slow-down comes to a screeching halt once the school year starts! To help your student adjust back to the early mornings that come with school, here are some tips to get them back on a school year sleep schedule.

Start Now:

First, start the process of getting back on a school year schedule early! About two weeks before the start of school is a good timeframe. Each night between now and the start of school, have your child go to bed a few minutes earlier, gradually working toward a regular bedtime. And each morning, have them wake up a few minutes earlier until they reach their "school day" wake up time.

Get a Routine:

Help your child to establish a bedtime routine. This can include 10-20 minutes of reading quietly, then brushing teeth, setting out the next day's clothes, etc. - whatever habits you would like your child to have once school starts, begin those habits now.

Avoid Electronics:

Do not allow your child "screen time" (television, computers, phones, etc.) for at least 30-60 minutes before bedtime. Studies show using a screen before bed can make falling asleep more difficult.

Avoid Caffeine:

Many parents get lax on treats during summertime, but now is the time to get back into healthy habits like avoiding caffeine and not allowing sugary treats too close to bedtime.

Be Consistent:

Once you reach that ideal bedtime and wake up time, stick with it. Don't let your child fall into the trap of trying to catch up on the weekends. Sleeping in on the weekend won't make up for a loss of sleep during the week.

If you think your child's poor sleep habits may be due to a medical problem, schedule an appointment with a pediatrician. Click here to find one near you.

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