• Halloween 2016 Guide: Family-friendly events/activities in Northwest Arkansas
  • Northwest Arkansas Calendar of Events: October 2016
  • 2016 Mom-Approved Award Winners Announced

On Your Mind: Could it be an eating disorder?

on your mindMy 13-year-old daughter has lost weight and seems to be obsessed with how much she eats, calories, fat grams, sugar, etc. My husband and I are worried that she could have an eating disorder. Can you give us some advice on how to talk to her about this without causing her to feel like we’re accusing her of something or like we’re trying to control her? What type of doctor do we take her to for an accurate diagnosis?

Response by Sara Laughinghouse, LPC

First and foremost, thank you for reaching out and noticing the changes in your daughter. It is difficult during the teenage years to know what is ‘normal adolescent development’ and what is a more serious issue. I commend you for taking note that your daughter appears to be losing weight and is hyper focused on her food intake. The good news is there are ways to talk to her and gain more understanding as to what is going on.

scale 200My first suggestion would be to schedule an appointment with your primary care physician. This is a great place to start because you can present your information and the physician can rule out any medical concerns.  Also, this allows you to begin the conversation. Simply letting your daughter know what you’re noticing can open the door to the conversation you want.

This is where I suggest you use empathy because you don’t want to push her away. However, something as simple as, “I’ve noticed you’ve lost some weight lately. We want to do a check-in with our doctor to make sure everything is okay,” opens the door to the conversation and the doctor’s visit. Statements of observation keep things simple and do not point blame, allowing the dialogue to open.

You can use information from the doctor’s visit to piggy-back the conversation even further. Try to remember to state your observations and concerns versus blaming or suggesting such as, “you-type statements.”  This will allow your daughter to feel that she can trust you and gives her that sense of control you mentioned.

Speaking of control, you’re right on track. Teenagers are developing their own sense of autonomy and they want control. I would encourage the following when starting to develop the conversation with your daughter:

1. Promote Empathy. Empathy means you’ll put yourself in your 13-year-old daughter’s shoes and try to think what it must be like to be her. Try to feel the pressure she maybe experiencing about her current life, including the weight issues, and go from there. Sometimes parents get lost in trying to immediately fix the problem and can neglect to listen to what may be an underlying source of the problem. Your daughter could be experiencing other stressors that are connected to her choices with food that may not mean a full on eating disorder.teenage-girl

2. Promote Support. You already seem to have support for her with your desire to ‘not control her or accuse her’ however, making sure you let her know you support her and have noticed changes is a crucial factor. Often, parents make assumptions that “their kids just know” because it appears to make sense but there is power in saying the actual words. It reinforces that you are there for her no matter what.

3. Promote Communication. Communication is hard. It’s especially challenging with teenagers. However, the more you model healthy communication and overcome hard conversations, the more comfortable they will become with doing it, too. If you can come at this conversation from a place of love and understanding versus accusing and blaming, the more apt she will be to respond positively. If you’re looking for something more concrete in regards to a response, I really like opening a hard conversation with vulnerability. Vulnerability happens when we let others see what’s going on inside of us. Letting your daughter know exactly what you are feeling allows her to see that vulnerability is okay, which can reduce fear associated with the situation. Statements such as “I feel worried about how you may react to what I want to talk to you about, but I feel concerned about ______,” is an example of how to open with your own feelings. This is another way to open this dialogue and provide a safe environment to encourage your daughter.

4. Promote listening. Listen to what she has to say before you make a decision, and involve her in that decision. This is what adolescence is all about! There is an art to teaching and listening. This is a great time to give her some control by listening to what she has to say on her issues while still reinforcing that you are responsible for her safety and ability to make informed decisions. The more she feels part of the conversation and decision, the more likely she is to respond positively.

Today, I focused on how to start this conversation with your daughter, but I want you to remember that eating disorders are complex. Don’t forget about the messages you send yourself as a parent. Modeling healthy eating patterns and confronting misconceptions about food are great ways to provide an example that reinforce positive messages about weight and food.

Remember adolescents receive messages about food and weight daily. Therefore, it’s important to make sure you’re promoting positive, healthy messages at home while exploring your concerns with your daughter.

Finally, you don’t have to explore these concerns alone. Seek support through a mental health professional. There could be other contributing factors that are impacting her eating patterns. A mental health professional will be able to provide support in helping you determine the best course of treatment.

Thank you for reaching out!

Therapists at Ozark Guidance would be happy to answer your questions and read what’s on your mind. Click the butterfly icon below to fill out an anonymous submission form with your question or concern. The form contains NO identifying information and is designed to give local women an online place to share concerns with a person qualified to offer feedback.

Disclaimer: This RESPONSE does not provide medical advice It is intended for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on nwaMotherlode or Ozark Guidance websites.

Local Snapshots: Fall Snapshot Contest

Local Snapshots Category Logo 2016Mamas, you definitely delivered some ADORABLE photos for the Fall Snapshot Contest. (The contest is still going, so you still have time to email us some photos.) Here are a few that we’ve received in the past few weeks. Prepare for an overload of cuteness.

diaz5Is it just us or are these kids cute enough to be professional models?

mciver2“Look into my beautiful eyes. I own you now.”


worley2oct“Oh, ya know… just hanging around with some pumpkins. The usual.”

collage2mciver1There’s nothing more beautiful than a happy mom with her sleepy baby.collage3ware1In this shot, the luckiest dog in the world is hearing a lullaby from his favorite person.

 HOW TO ENTER: Send up to 5 photos per month to gwen@nwaMotherlode.com. Our judges will select a winner at the end of November. The mom who submits the winning snapshot will win a 16×20 gallery-wrapped canvas prepared by our friends at Scott Frame & Art. It will be ready to hang on the wall, just in time for the holidays!

Good luck in the contest. Looking forward to seeing even more great pictures!


Smile Shoppe updated logo 2016

The Photo Category, which is always full of smiles, is sponsored by The Smile Shoppe, a pediatric dental practice with offices in Rogers and Springdale. The Smile Shoppe specializes in the treatment of infants, children, adolescents as well as children with special needs. Dr. Jeffrey Rhodes and Dr. Emily Fourmy are both board certified by the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry. Click HERE for more info on the Smile Shoppe. (And let your kids check out their fun website which also includes free coloring sheets and online games.)

Mom-Approved Award Winner: Fayetteville Athletic Club

Editors’ note: Congrats to Fayetteville Athletic Club, one of our website sponsors who recently earned a Mom-Approved Award in the “Best Place to Work Out” category. Get info on all the Club has to offer in today’s featured profile.

Location: 2920 East Zion Road, Fayetteville, AR 72703  at the corner of Crossover and Zion Road

Phone: 479-587-0500


Mon. – Thurs.: 5:00 am – 10:00 pm
Friday: 5:00 am – 8:00 pm
Saturday: 7:00 am – 8:00 pm
Sunday: 7:00 am – 8:00 pm

(Club hours may vary on certain holidays or during special club events.)

Kids Fit Fun FACtory:

Mon. -Thurs.:  7:30am – 8:00 pm
Friday:  7:30am – 6:30 pm
Saturday: 8:00am – 2:00 pm
Sunday: 1:00pm – 5:00 pm

Operating since: Proud to say that we are celebrating 20 years in Fayetteville – established in 1996

Gym offerings: fac-spinning

  • 120,000 square foot campus
  • 16,000 square foot Kids Fit FACtory
  • 14,000 square foot cardio and weight floor
  • Indoor and outdoor pool areas
  • Indoor track
  • Cadence Café with coffee, sandwiches and smoothies

Group Exercise Studios

  • Over 100 classes weekly included in your membership
  • Five separate, dedicated studios
  • Group exercise featuring: Cycling, Pilates, Barre, and Hot Yoga classes
  • Les Mills classes including:  Body Pump, Body Combat, RPM, Body Attack, Body Step, Sprint and Body Flow

WAYMO Cross Training and AMP

  • Dedicated WAYMO Cross Training Court
  • TRX Studiofeaturing H.I.I.T., Kettlebells and TRX

Weight Floor and Cardiofac-weight2

  • Over 70 cardio machines
  • Precor elipticals, Technogym and Star Trac treadmills
  • Cybex Arc Trainers, Concept2 rowing machines
  • Full lines of FreeMotion weight equipment
  • Two full lines of weight machines from Technogym and Life Fitness
  • Dedicated stretching areas
  • Small-group and personal training
  • Social seating areas and personal viewing screens on cardio equipment
  • Indoor Track (10 laps = 1 mile )

Pilates Studio

  • 5 Allegro Reformers
  • 4 Springboards
  • Stott Pilates Chair
  • Ladder Barrel
  • Studio Reformer
  • ½ Trapeze Table

Razor’s Edge Youth Fitness Center

  • Cardio equipment including treadmills, ellipticals and stationary bikes
  • Bee-Fit Strength Training equipment designed specifically for kids ages 8 – 12 years old

Pool Areasfac-pool

  • Two separate outdoor pool areas
  • Kids pool with slides
  • Adult lap pool
  • Poolside café
  • Air supported, indoor pool area with a 25-yard lap pool
  • 70 lengths or 35 laps = 1 mile (pool enclosure is removed during the summer months)
  • Sauna, steam room and whirlpool in men’s and women’s locker rooms

Indoor Basketball Courts

  • Hardwood court for basketball, volleyball and futsal soccer
  • Scheduled full and half-court games
  • Six basketball hoops

Tennis Center

  • 6, plexi-cushion tournament tennis courts/ bubbled and heated during the winter for year round play
  • Pro shop and viewing area
  • APEX Junior Tennis Academy
  • USTA leagues
  • Professional teaching staff

Locker Rooms

  • Free day-use lockers
  • Lounge areas for relaxing pre or post-workout
  • Complimentary lotions, shampoos, and soaps
  • Free towel service
  • Large whirlpool in each locker room
  • Eucalyptus steam room
  • Dry sauna

Fit Kids Fun FACtoryfac-kids-area

  • 16,000 square foot kid’s club with dedicated gym and play studios
  • Separate Fit Kids Fun FACtory entrance
  • Two-story indoor play structure
  • Outdoor playground
  • Art room
  • X-Box Kinect fitness game room
  • Dedicated room just for infants
  • Programmed activities
  • Birthday party/ multipurpose room
  • Licensed After School Program
  • Licensed extremely active Summer Camp
  • Jumpstart Licensed Preschool Program
  • Indoor multi-sport gymnasium including built in soccer goals, 6 basketball goals and dasher boards.
  • Dedicated Boys and Girls locker rooms

Retreat Day Spa featuring

Massage Therapy including: fac-spa

·         Swedish Massage

·         Deep Tissue Massage

·         Reflexology

·         Maternity Massage

·         Hot Stone Massage

Aesthetic Service including:

  • European Facial
  • Oxygen Infusion Facial
  • Age Smart Facial
  • Acne Relief Facial
  • Lash and Brow tinting
  • Waxing
  • Spray Tanning

Med Spa Services including:

  • Microdermabrasion
  • Chemical peels
  • Age Smart Treatment
  • Botox Cosmetic®
  • Juvederm® XC procedures.fac-tennis2

What you might not know about FAC: Our APEX Junior Tennis Program is a fabulous way for kids to learn the game of tennis as young as 4 years old. Our Pro staff includes nationally ranked Division I Tennis Players/Teaching Pro’s. In this program, juniors play with color coded tennis balls. Each ball has been designed to bounce at the proper height for children to learn the game of tennis quickly. Each ball color also corresponds to a different court size. As the youth players become stronger, they graduate to smaller/dense balls and larger court sizes. We have many children that start in our tennis program and are able to volley the ball within a few group lessons. Many of our APEX players have earned scholarships and are now playing at the college/university level.

What a local mom says about Fayetteville Athletic Club: “Absolutely LOVE this club. A huge variety of classes including my two favorite Yoga instructors Lara and Lynnlee and Body Pump instructor Rick. My son loves the daycare, and a full size pool makes triathlon training much easier. Friendly staff is a plus and selling my favorite juices from Berry Natural is the icing on the cake!”   ~  Jessica Angelica of Fayetteville

Congrats to the staff of Fayetteville Athletic Club!
Click here to visit their website.

Giveaway: NWA Boutique Show VIP tickets + gift cards!


It’s getting close, mamas! One of our favorite shopping weekends of the year where we get that Christmas list nearly knocked out with awesome goodies!

The NWA Boutique Show will be Nov. 11-12 this year and you will LOVE it if you’ve never shopped this event. If you have, you know what all the fuss is about and why you need to be there to snag some awesome gifts for friends and family — plus a few things for you! #treatyoself

At this show, you can shop over 150 merchants featuring thousands of one-of-a-kind and custom items, including home decor, gifts, clothing, gourmet food, holiday decor, children’s items, art and more.

We’ll have a booth there again this year and we’re planning a spectacular giveaway for the show. Be sure to stop by and see us!

But right now, let’s get to the giveaway: Five winners will each receive ticket packages which include 2 VIP passes ($50 value), 5 general admission passes ($25 value) and 1 $15 merchant gift certificate to be used at the show. Total bundle value is $90). So each of the 5 winners can bring a friend to the VIP event Friday morning (Nov. 11) and then come back with 4 friends later in the weekend for free.

About the VIP Shopping Event:

  • Friday, November 11
  • VIP Shopping, 9-11 a.m.

As a VIP, you’ll get first dibs on all the fabulous shopping! Enjoy live Christmas jazz by Rachel Billingsley and Jamie Lockhart, a signature swag bag filled with goodies, and treats from local favorites! You’ll also receive free return general admission ALL weekend and the chance to win hundreds of amazing door prizes!

$20 Online through 11/10/16 or $25 at door** with a portion of proceeds benefiting the community projects of the Junior League of NWA.

Each of the five nwaMotherlode winners will receive a $15 gift card to one of the following Boutique Show merchants:


Rock City Outfitters has the cutest tees for kids and adults

NWA Boutique Show giveaway, Katie Goodwin, Razorback pillow

We love this fight song pillow from Katie Goodwin!

Kelly's soaps. Yes, please.

Kelly’s soaps. Yes, please.

Cute elf wreath from Your Front Door

This whimsical elf wreath is one of the cuties from Your Front Door

Such a cute outfit from Wit and Whimsy!

Such a fun outfit from Wit and Whimsy!

HOW TO ENTER: If you’d love to win one of these 5 VIP bundles, click on the word “comments” (right under the headline of this post) and scroll down to the bottom of the comments posted by other moms. Then write a quick comment telling us about a person in your life who’s really hard to shop for – and what you’d love to find for him/her at the Boutique Show. Here’s a list of all the merchants who will be at this year’s show!

You can also email your answer to us at giveaways@nwaMotherlode.com.

christmas gift sack 250INCREASE YOUR ODDS OF WINNING: Help us spread the word about this giveaway by emailing your friends and family about the giveaway. We’ll give you an extra chance to win for every person you tell. Just be sure to put giveaways@nwaMotherlode.com on the CC line of your note so we can give you proper credit.

Our newsletter subscribers get access to the good stuff, including exclusive giveaways (like this one), information about local events, local mom interviews, recipes and more.

It’s delivered straight to your inbox so you don’t miss anything awesome. CLICK HERE to sign up. We won’t fill your inbox with info, no worries. We only send out newsletters when there’s something in it for you — and we know you’ll be interested in hearing about it.

BE SOCIAL: You can also earn extra chances to win by commenting on our Facebook page, following us on Twitter or following us on Pinterest. If you do any of those, just mention it in your comment or email so we can give you proper credit.

We’ll choose the 5 winners on Friday, so keep an eye on your inbox! Click here to visit the NWA Boutique Facebook page!

Mealtime Mama: Cute treats for your Halloween or fall party

By Shannon Magsam

OK, mamas, this is a repeat post from last year. But it’s a fun one with several good ideas for fall food. Hope you enjoy:

The month of October is perfect for a party because of all the fun fall treats and the weather is just right for being outside.

I thought I’d share a few of the treats from our recent house party in case you want to use them at a gathering you’re having this month. Let’s start with the caramel apple bar, which I plan to do again on Halloween night for friends and new neighbors who stop over while trick-or-treating here. This was my 13-year-old daughter’s idea and it was a hit with our guests.

The Caramel Apple Bar is not a cookie, it’s this:

caramel apple bar, use this

You just grab some sliced apples (I cheated and bought them pre-cut), some caramel (you can make your own or buy) and then come up with all kinds of toppings that would taste great on a caramel apple. We had coconut, M&Ms, sprinkles and Skittles. There are tons of possibilities! I wish we’d added a spoon into the caramel (which is in the spider container in the above pic) because some friends just wanted to drizzle caramel over their apples.

Up next, MUMMIES!

Mummies, use thisThese were my teenager’s idea, too, and she made them. We realized after the fact that we should have used double-stuffed Oreos. To make them, just use icing to scribble the mummy faces and add edible eyes. If you use the larger Oreos, you can place a candy stick into each for a lollipop effect. Ours didn’t have enough stuffing for the stick, but I think they turned out cute anyway ;)

Our {Frightful} Fall Kettle Corn was also a big hit:

Frightful Fall Kettle Corn

We also cheated a little on this by buying bags of kettle corn to pop. So you just pop your kettle corn, pour it into a big bowl and add your favorite candies. We used mini chocolate chips, pretzels, M&Ms and candy corn (which makes it so cute!). After you gently mix the popcorn and candy together, drizzle melted chocolate over the top. We used decadent Ghirardelli dark melting wafers. YUM.

Those were the sweet treats. We also had chili (my husband’s special recipe) with all the fixin’s plus a few of my favorite appetizers. It was a fun party and the food prep turned out to be a great bonding experience with my teenager. Of course, as soon as we got finished cooking, my daughter went back to her regularly-scheduled Instagramming. It was good while it lasted.

Hope this inspires you to invite a few of your friends over for a fall get-together!