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Editor's Note 

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The birth of a child is a life experience that is forever ingrained in the mind. Labor duration, location, as well as the memory of loved ones present, are all indelible details. In reality, the birthing process is just a flickering moment in the parental journey, but, somehow it is monumental, especially for the mother. Enjoy reading Annette Benedetti's article on birthing options here in Central Oregon. Whether you feel more comfortable at home or in the hospital, there are numerous options from which to choose.

Summer is my favorite season of the year. Summer just means fun. A bit of advice for parents when planning the summer vacation – work in some teachable moments between the fun and intentionally plan your child's days to encourage learning. The summer slide is real, but with careful planning your child can stay ahead of the game. Check out some must-reads in Bookshelf for starters. Reading and writing over the break are important, but even attending a festival or fair can expose kids to new ideas and skills. Consult our essential guide to Oregon events – kids love the anticipation and thrill of attending something grand. More summer ideas include exposing your children to art — at home or in a class, a trip to the library and so much more. Local artist and mom, MaryLea Harris, has some wonderful ideas for the crafty-impaired. Summer is also a time for parents to get out with friends – we encourage parents to bring the kids along instead of leaving them home with a babysitter. Local businesses have made this easy, catering to children in a variety of ways. And in Kids in Action, read about an inspiring young woman who recently led the team at The Pinnacle, Summit High's newspaper, to first-place awards at the National High School Journalism Convention. Congratulations Natalie!

Happy Summer to all – I hope you find fun and laughter in all that you do!

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