Archive for June, 2017

Seasons Change. People Cha-ange

By Just Add Kids Founder,
Paula Herrmann

Okay, I betcha you’re too young to even know that song (“Seasons Change” sung by 80’s girl band, Exposé). That line from the song popped into my head as I thought about today, the first day of summer (yay!), and the task of writing my farewell blog.

If you missed it out in Facebook land on Monday, I posted this video to let you know about the changes happening here at Just Add Kids…

https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2FJustAddKidsSEWis%2Fvideos%2F640696242793011%2F&show_text=0&width=560

I launched JAK back in the fall of 2009. I had just lost my decade-long job as an advertising sales executive with Metroparent Magazine. Its owner, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, along with print newspapers across the globe felt the economic impact of online new sources, and alas, about 90 of us lost our jobs that fateful early August Tuesday morning.

My substantial financial contribution to the family was necessary, the timing seemed appropriate as my oldest daughter was going into high school and my youngest of four, my one and only son,  was starting in Kindergarten. I’d have a nice chunk of time while the kids were at school to birth, nurture, and grow JAK. He/she was kinda like my fifth child.

picture JAK Expo 2010 4JAK brought to life the first Just Add Kids EXPO! that took place when JAK was a mere infant at 3 months old.  Hosted at Burlington RV Superstore, we had to cut the event short when apparently a child pulled the fire alarm.  How awesome was that when Sherrif’s deputies and the fire department showed up with sirens blaring and lights flashing?! Instant education and excitement for the kids, as well as a quick evacuation of the building. Good grief!

We repeated a collaborative event the next year with and at the Sturtevant Sportsplex which we called the Active Kids Expo. The following years 2012-2015 continued with the Just Add Kids EXPO! in partnership with Racine Unified School District and held at Case High School. Some of ya’ll know what happened after that. I’ve had to just let it go.

active kids expo 2011 pic 3 fixedMad Science at EXPO 2013

JAK EXPO 2013 pic Madeline reporting

Just Add Kids EXPO yard sign 2013EXPO 2015 pics ShannonBruce the Moose Timber Ridge Lodge at EXPO 2013 pic

We’ve just seen the wrap up of one of my most favorite things…our “COLOR MOM BEAUTIFUL” & “COLOR DAD AWESOME” annual kids coloring contests. Children’s renditions of their mommy, daddy, or other parent figure are so preciously imprinted on my heart. XXOO.

CMB WINNER Kaydn 4.5 and mom Shannon 2.jpgBrooklyn age 12 CMB 2017 winner portrait.jpgCDA 2014 Cailyn age 5

Nearly 8 years dedicated to doing my best at pulling it all together. Balancing parenting, working, community involvement, family crises. I hope you’ve enjoyed this ride, whether you’ve followed from the beginning, or are just beginning to learn about what a valuable resource Just Add Kids is for families looking for things to do and places to be. Kid-oriented and family friendly. That’s what’s it’s all about!

So alas! Not all good things must come to an end. It’s just the beginning. That is for JAK’s new “parents” or rather co-owners, Shannon Barsch and Courtney Carson. Shannon, a mom of boys (2-11) is no stranger to Just Add Kids, she’s pictured above as the winner of the 2011 COLOR MOM contest along with her oldest son, Kaydn. She worked behind the scenes, gosh I don’t know, through a couple of pregnancies and newborns as the Calendar Mom, loading the JAK Happenings Calendar full of the activities and events you need to know about. She’s been an amazing support working, volunteering, or just “liking” every Facebook post. Then there is Courtney. So young! A mom of 3. A great skill set and compliment to Shannon.  Apparently, her first brush with Just Add Kids was when I was a guest speaker at Grace Church’s MOPs program. (And she didn’t run after that likely lackluster performance!)

My kids are now 13, 15, 20 and 22. I’m a recent stroke survivor and am excited to move forward into my encore years. I won’t be too far. I’ll likely pop up here or there (as Shannon and Courtney allow visitation). You can currently catch me on social media as the #FurnitureLady,  if you wish.  I started working part-time in furniture sales at Steinhafels Furniture in Oak Creek about 9 months ago and I LOVE IT!  That said, I don’t think that’s where I’ll land completely. Who knows? You might find me keeping house along the shores of Lake Michigan (yes, we applied), authoring a book titled “Clean White Underwear, Beautiful Jesus Coloring Book, Chick-fil-A, and White Flowers”, launching a men’s fragrance line, or something to do with laser esthetics. Yes, that’s me. The ideas lady. Never a dull moment.

my kids on Fathers Day 2017.jpgMy Herrmann Kids on Fathers Day 2017

I am grateful for the many followers on social media, JAK-ies….those that would show up to the many events that JAK would personally attend/exhibit/sponsor, e-mail subscribers, blog readers, event attendees, and website visitors. And of course to those businesses and organizations that made it possible to deliver every day, every week, every month…the Just Add Kids’ advertisers and sponsors. I’d name you all, but I risk missing some.  Freaking blessed. Thank you!

See ya!
   Paula

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