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Kim’s Blog combines home front experiences with informative updates on area events, unique opportunities and of course, dynamic deals!  For daily updates, Get Social and Follow SpringfieldMoms on your preferred Social Network for event reminders, coupon links, reader favorites and lots of helpful tips and laughs.

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The Smile Company is a special community outreach program of the Springfield Youth Performance Group (SYPG) that consists of beloved fairy tale princesses and child-friendly characters that visit children in a need of a smile due to a medical condition. Together the children and the special guest might read, play games or make a craft.  Some of the Princesses will even sing!  All children receive a prize for their brave smiles. 

SYPG’s The Smile Company is thrilled to be partnering with HSHS St. John’s Hospital. The fairy tale characters will be visiting the Children’s Hospital on a regular basis.


See information on SYPG’s Fairytale Ball here.

This blog post was originally posted January 2010, but it’s timely today and always!


We all know one of the greatest things our children do is to teach and re-teach us the lessons we learned long ago. This morning around the breakfast table I asked the girls what have you learned about Martin Luther King Jr? Their responses were inspiring and spot on.


From my 5-year-old. “He wanted to bring peace and respect to the world.  He dreamed that black little kids and white little kids would hold hands and play together….. But people didn’t like his ideas because they didn’t want the world to change…but they hadn’t even tried it!”


WOW! I hear you! How many people fear change and resist new ways of doing things.  It’s ironic because kids are learning how to do new things every day!


From my 7-year-old: “Imagine how it would feel if you couldn’t sit where you want, eat where you want and you couldn’t play with all of your friends because of their skin color!”   I cannot imagine. “People tried to stop MLK Jr. in violent ways, but he stayed peaceful.”   If only everyone could behave this way.


Wise words from the younger generation.


I am so grateful our children are growing up in a world where they don’t choose their friends based on skin color. Where they have many examples of strong men and women who stand up for what they believe in. The dream for peace and respect in the world however, remains a lifelong quest for generations to come.


“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter,”  said Martin Luther King Jr. Thank you, MLK Jr., for your continued inspiration.




The Community Foundation for the Land of Lincoln is now accepting applications for the 2018 scholarship program. There are 31 different scholarships with nearly $115,000 available in awards. While many scholarships are available to graduating seniors in Sangamon County, there are also scholarships available for returning students and graduating seniors from surrounding counties.

Four new scholarship funds have been established for this year:

Ada McCombs White Memorial Scholarship ($750) This scholarship is available to graduates of A-C Central High School in Ashland, IL who are pursuing a teaching career. It is offered in memory of Ada McCombs White, a 1932 Ashland High School graduate, and her dedication to education.

Country Financial Community Scholarship ($2,000 – 10 awards) This scholarship is awarded to current and former graduates of high schools in Sangamon, Menard, Macoupin, Montgomery, Cass, Morgan, and Greene counties who have demonstrated excellence in community service. Multiple recipients will be awarded.

Don W. Casper Scholarship ($2,500) This scholarship is for a graduate of Springfield High School, in Springfield IL who participated in varsity athletics and demonstrates sportsmanship and character. Athletic ability is NOT a determining factor.

Susan G. Conner Special Education Scholarship ($500) This scholarship supports a graduating senior from a high school in Sangamon County, IL who is pursuing a degree in special education. It is offered in memory of Susan G. “Suzi” Conner, a dedicated teacher who taught her students how to believe in themselves and achieve success. 

The Community Foundation for the Land of Lincoln also administers the Student of the Year Scholarship Program, available for students in Sangamon County. Nominations are by invitation only and students should contact their school guidance counselor for more information.

Full details and criteria for each award are posted on the Community Foundation’s website at under “How to Apply for a Scholarship.” Students with questions or limited computer access should contact the Community Foundation.

The deadline for applications is March 1, 2018. Students should review the specific requirements, criteria and due dates for each scholarship application. The recipients will be notified by May 2, 2018. All scholarships are for post-secondary education.

In addition to the new scholarships listed above, the following scholarships are also available:

Association for Women in Communications, Springfield Chapter, Communications Scholarship ($500) This scholarship is awarded to students majoring in communications, journalism, public relations or related fields such as marketing, design, videography, photography, etc. that are from Central Illinois or attend a college or university in Central Illinois.

CFLL Service Scholarship ($1,500) This scholarship is awarded to a graduating high school student from Sangamon County who will be a full-time student at a college or university in the coming fall. Each high school principal may nominate one student to complete the application; that student must be an extraordinary example of service to others and the community. Unsolicited applications will not be accepted.

Charlie Cottle Scholarship ($1,500) This scholarship is awarded to a graduate of Chatham Glenwood High School pursuing a post-secondary degree. Charlie Cottle established and built the Glenwood football program. This award is to honor his memory and his values of hard work, integrity, humility and sportsmanship.

CIELO Medical Scholarship ($2,500 – renewable) This scholarship fund is for Latino students pursuing a medical-related degree at a school in Sangamon County. Medical studies that qualify include: doctor, nursing, dentistry, veterinary science, emergency medical services, occupational therapy, radiography, x-ray technician, respiratory care program, electroneurodiagnostic technology or nutrition science.

 Donna and Donald Lee Wolaver Memorial Golf Scholarship ($500) This scholarship fund is for graduating high school students who participated on a golf team while in school, who can demonstrate academic performance as well as financial need. This award is to honor the memory of Donald Lee Wolaver, who recognized at an early age how golf provides valuable lessons on practicing, following rules and finding your personal best.

Frontiers International Springfield Club Scholarship ($500 – multiple scholarships may be awarded) This scholarship concentrates on assisting African-American students, although any student may apply. The Frontiers encourage scholastic achievement, leadership skills, community service and good citizenship, and the scholarship will assist students who exhibit those characteristics.

Gerald F. and Luanna R. Kennedy Scholarship Fund ($1,500) This scholarship will be awarded to a graduating senior from Pana High School with a demonstrated history of contribution to the community of Pana. It is offered in memory of Gerald and Luanna Kennedy, lifelong residents of Pana who saw great value in students obtaining additional training/education after high school.

Girls on the Run Founder Scholarship ($1,500) The purpose of this scholarship is to financially assist Girls on the Run of Central Illinois program alumnae with college or vocational training expenses.  The award was established in 2013 by Deb Shultz, the founder of Girls on the Run of Central Illinois, and her family, and is not solely based on financial need.

Henry Bunn Memorial Scholarship ($5,000 – eight awards) This scholarship is awarded to a high school graduate in Sangamon County or current college student who graduated from a high school in Sangamon County with a superior school record and high moral character who demonstrates financial need. It was established under the Will of Alice E. Bunn, who died on April 8, 1953, to honor her brother, Henry Bunn.

Illinois Women in Leadership Chrysalis Award ($1,000) This scholarship award is provided by Illinois Women in Leadership to assist Sangamon County women who have been out of high school for five years or more and are enrolling in a college, university or trade school; or women who are continuing or returning to college who do not yet have an undergraduate degree. 

Illinois Women in Leadership High School Scholarship ($1,000 – three scholarships may be awarded) This scholarship award is provided by Illinois Women in Leadership to assist Sangamon County women in post-secondary education by encouraging them to set and pursue career goals.

Jamie K. Patino Math and Science Scholarship ($900) This scholarship is awarded to a graduate of Springfield Southeast High School who will be pursuing a degree in engineering, technology or science. The scholarship is in memory of Jamie K. Patino and the path she traveled. The scholarship has been established to encourage other students who are interested in following her spirit and the qualities she had, including the strength to stand up for what you believe is right, the ability to overcome difficult situations or hardships and the desire to make the most of today while being mindful of the future.

Jim Byron Scholarship ($1,000) This scholarship is available to graduating students from Williamsville High School who are involved with community service and school activities. This fund was established to honor Jim Byron, who has helped hundreds of student athletes live up to their potential.

Joseph and Lois Morris Memorial Scholarship ($2,000 – multiple scholarships may be awarded) This scholarship is awarded to at least one male and female who is a graduating senior from Springfield High School. The applicants must have a written recommendation from their high school guidance counselor and demonstrate financial need. This award was established in 2014 in memory of Joseph and Lois Morris.

Linda S. Culver Memorial Scholarship ($4,000) This scholarship is available for a nationally registered Girl Scout in good standing with the Girl Scouts of Central Illinois. This scholarship is named in memory of Linda S. Culver, a prominent Girl Scout leader and area business leader for many years.

Lori L. Kashmer Scholarship ($3,500) This scholarship has been established to give financial assistance in memory of Lori L. Kashmer, who had a passion for learning and helping others. It is available to either a part-time or full-time student pursing a degree in nursing, health or medical career, or in veterinary medicine.

Margaret Johnson Special Education Scholarship ($600) This scholarship was established to offer financial assistance to students graduating from a Sangamon County high school who plan to pursue a degree in special education. It is offered in memory of Margaret Johnson.

Mary Lou and Dwight Pitman Scholarship ($1,000 – renewable) This scholarship is awarded to a graduating student from a public high in Sangamon County other than Springfield School District or Chatham School District, who has at least one older sibling currently enrolled in college and/or at least one younger sibling who plans to attend college. This scholarship is in honor of Mary Lou and Dwight Pitman.

O’Brien Medical or Health Related Field of Study Scholarship ($1,000 – two scholarships may be awarded) This scholarship is awarded to a graduating high school student in Sangamon County pursuing a degree or certificate in a medical or health related field of study. Applicants must demonstrate financial need beyond reasonable levels of parental and self- help as well as superior academic quality.

Paul V. Gage Community Service Scholarship ($600) This award is for a Vienna High School student who demonstrates excellence in community service and demonstrates financial need.

Pearl Fairfield Scholarship Fund ($750) This scholarship is for a graduating senior in Sangamon County with a preference given to single-parent households.

Reverend Kenneth H. White Family Scholarship ($800 minimum, multiple scholarships may be awarded) This scholarship is awarded to a Lanphier High School graduating student who plans to obtain a State Teaching Certificate and intends to teach in the public school system. Rev. White was a self-sacrificing man who generously spent his life in service to others and viewed it as his calling – this scholarship honors his memory.

Roland Machinery Scholarship ($1,000) This scholarship is available to students pursuing a certificate or degree in a mechanical or technical trade (heavy machinery mechanic, welder, diesel engine mechanic etc.). Must be a graduate of a high school in one of the following counties: Sangamon, Christian, Montgomery, Macoupin, Scott, Morgan, Cass, Menard, Mason and Logan.

SAHBA Construction/Robert E. von Behren Memorial Scholarship ($1,000)                                         
This scholarship award is open to students pursuing a career in the building industry in the following counties: Sangamon, Christian, Montgomery Macoupin, Scott, Morgan, Cass, Menard, Mason and Logan. Mr. von Behren was an accomplished builder and helped establish the Association. He was devoted to his craft and worked to perfect his skills and teach others.

Sgt. John R. Dalhaus Memorial Scholarship ($1,000) This scholarship will be awarded to a graduating senior from Litchfield High School that is a pursuing a degree in a vocational field. This scholarship is intended to honor the memory of Sgt. John R. Dalhaus.

Spanish American Cultural Center Scholarship ($3,000 – up to two scholarships may be awarded – renewable) This scholarship is available to students of Latino descent who will be a graduating senior or who is obtaining a GED from an institution located in any of the following Illinois counties: Sangamon, Cass, Douglas, Champaign, Macon, McLean or Morgan. The Spanish American Cultural Center has worked hard to make funds available to benefit Latino students.

World War II Illinois Descendants Scholarship ($1,000 – two scholarships may be awarded) This scholarship is available to a student graduating from any high school in Illinois who is a descendant of an Illinois veteran of World War II. The scholarship is intended to honor the memory of those from Illinois who served in World War II.

High school students may also contact their school guidance counselors for details on the scholarship awards available. For more information or questions about the online application system, contact the Community Foundation at

Through philanthropic services, strategic grantmaking and community leadership, the Community Foundation for the Land of Lincoln “connects people who care with causes that matter.”

You’ll find something to inspire you and your kids to learn a new skill this year at LLCC Community Education!

If you’ve resolved to live a healthier lifestyle this year, check out our Healthy Eating Culinary Classes including ‘Gluten Free Meals’ on 1/27, ‘Paleo Diet’ on 2/3 and ‘Brunch Made Over’ on 5/10.

If your child prefers to be in the kitchen check out our youth Culinary classes for ages 8-18. Each class meets from 9:30a.m.-12:30p.m. and costs $39.
Breakfast Cookery 3/3/18 – Learn to make all the breakfast classics including a few fun surprises such as bacon straws and pancake art.
Korean Style 3/24/18 Kimbap is a seaweed rice roll made of gim (a sheet of dried seaweed) and bap (rice) and uses colorful vegetables. Have fun learning about Korean culture and hand rolling your own kimbap.  
Pizza Pie 4/7/18 Make the dough from scratch and get creative with the toppings to create your very own pizza pie. 

There are also opportunities for you and your child to attend classes together.
Classical Karate: Weds & Fri, Jan 17 – Mar 23; 6-7pm
R.A.D. Women’s/Girls Self Defense: Tuesdays, Jan 30 – Feb 20; 6-9pm
Intro to Macs for Windows Users: Saturday, Feb 24; 9-11a.m.

For kids grade 3-6, our newest series of STEAM focused classes integrates the arts with science, technology, engineering and math. Classes are 9-11 a.m. and the fee is $25 per class.
Jan. 20 – Chemistry Matters!
Feb. 10 – Let’s Get Physical
Mar. 24 – Weather Works
Apr. 14 – Beautiful Botany
May 19 – Geology Rocks! 

To view all of our Community, Youth, Senior and Culinary offerings, call 217-786-2432 or visit us here:

It happens!  Midwest weather is anything but reliable this time of year!

We recommend the link below on ABC NewsChannel 20 for the most up-to-date list of closings of area school districts, and you can certainly check the website of your local school as well.


Area School Closings


Now that Christmas is over at our house, we’re watching the pine needles fall over the tree skirt that is now bare :-(.  Although we have a lot of fun memories to reflect upon; the reality is that pre-NYE means cleaning up, reorganizing the holiday decor, making returns and exchanges juggling all of this with work and workouts?!

Here’s our list of timesavers for you this week.

Try a New recipe for New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day football gatherings!

Non-edible baking fun!

Homemade playdough keeps the little ones busy and is fun to make.


New Year’s Eve Events

  • First Night Springfield is an annual family favorite for SpMoms!
  • There are some daytime and evening options in the Greater Springfield Area. See our listing by clicking here.
  • Need some ideas for at-home activities? Check out our Pinterest board for crafts, activities, party ideas and more!


This local birthday girl has the right attitude!  Giving always feels better than receiving!  Thank you for sharing your story and setting such a wonderful example for kids of ALL ages!
Since I couldn’t decide what I wanted for my birthday, my Mom and I talked about donating to HSHS St. John’s Children’s Hospital. My Mom explained to me the toys could go to sick kids anywhere in the hospital even the ER and pediatric rehab. I sent the wish list from the hospital with my birthday party invitation. I asked that they purchase from this list or they could donate money and I would shop for them! I had so much fun shopping ! We got nerf balls, barbies, legos, matching games and so much more! 
I was inspired because my brother had to go the hospital for speech and occupational therapy for three years. They were always so nice to him and really helped him. It must be very hard for the kids that are at the hospital because they are stuck there. I did this so they could have something to make them happy and have something fun while they are at the hospital for treatment. 
I would tell others kids to donate because it makes me feel happy to help the kids at the hospital. You won’t even miss not having presents on your birthday because this was so much fun to shop for toys and know they are going to make someone else happy!  
Thank you,
Madelyn Connolly, Springfield IL

Why do we say “I slept like a baby?”  Babies are horrible sleepers.  Last night I actually slept like a baby.  In fact all week I slept like a baby.  And by that I mean I woke up every three hours.  You see, I was up with a baby that is going through a sleep regression phase as well as getting teeth and possibly has a cold.  

It is amazing to me how we all as parents just power through it. In the last 48 hours I have had exactly 3 hours of sleep.  I still needed to go about my day and tend to my other kids.  So we really can’t afford to be sleepy.  Powered by more caffeine than anyone should actually consume, I got all of the kids to their after school activities, feed and bathed.  I am now settling in and preparing for another sleepless night since it’s 8:55 and the baby has already called out 4 times for me to come rock him.  

As I struggle with this, I remind myself this is just a phase and we will come out on the other side and I will sort of sleep again.  It won’t be soundly, because let’s face it, sleeping ended sometime in the first trimester and won’t get better until they are out of college.  So what advice do I have for someone going through this stage of parenting? 

  • I know you have heard it before but really take this to heart… LEAVE the housework and nap when the baby is napping. 
  • If one parent does the bulk of the feedings, give up one feeding and let your spouse or partner take one shift.  
  • Hydrate.  Keep your fluids up.  It’s easy to get run down if you aren’t sleeping and water will go along way at keeping you healthy.
  • Find a good show to binge watch.  If you are up with a little one who just isn’t sleeping, having something mindless to distract you makes the night go by faster.
  • Sticky notes!! You are tired.  You will forget things.  Write all important things down. 
  • Know your limits.  If you find yourself getting frustrated with the baby, make sure to hand them off to your spouse or other care taker so that you can have a break.
  • Repeat over and over: This is just a phase
  • Remember there was a time when you were younger where pulling an all nighter was just a normal college night. 
  • Know that just a few houses away there is probably another parent going through the exact same thing.  Good luck! 

Even the best meal planners among us have days where when dinner time comes along, we’re just not feeling it! That’s when delivery or carryout comes to the rescue!

Check out our Delivery & Carry Out Restaurant Guides, and let us know if we are missing your favorites! 

Looking for a way to help Kidzeum of Health and Science close the gap on the rest of the $350,000 they need to ensure a successful grand opening in June 2018, Don and Wanda Tracy and Ray and Anne Capestrain decided to pool their resources and encourage others to give by offering a $35,000 matching opportunity. Between now and December 31, 2018, the Tracy and Capestrain families will match all contributions up to $35,000. 

Board President, Rachael Thomson says, “The first 100 contributors will be entered in a drawing to win a Free Family of 4 Family Membership to Kidzeum! Also, the first 250 contributors who give $50 or more will receive an exclusive Kidzeum Memory Match card game for you to make fun, family memories at home. Kidzeum is extremely blessed to have families like the Tracys and the Capestrains that believe in and support our mission.”

Kidzeum has raised $7.1 Million dollars to cover purchasing and renovating the historic Schnepp and Barnes buildings located at 412, 414 and 416 East Adams Street, exhibits and three months of operational costs. Kidzeum needs to raise an additional $350,000 to cover the costs associated with technology, communications, security and furniture. 

The Kidzeum of Health and Science is being designed with a focus on fun and learning by teaching children of all abilities about health and science through discovery and play, The facility will feature 25,000 square feet of exhibit space over three floors and will host three major galleries: Healthy Body, Healthy Community and Healthy Earth.  Each gallery has over a hundred interactive exhibits that are all hands-on and educational. For more information or to make a Memory Match, go to or www.facebook/kidzeum.