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Chapter 7 – Run the Race! – page 34

You might expect that, as a Canadian, I do a lot of skiing, ice skating, sledding, snow boarding or maybe even snow shoeing! Unfortunately, I’m not very adventurous so I haven’t tried skiing yet. The last time I tried ice skating, I ended up bruised and with a swollen knee for over a week. Snow boarding? Puh-leeze… I won’t even get on a skateboard!

In the summer, I don’t swim, I don’t ride my bike, I don’t play soccer and I certainly don’t do anything as crazy as water skiing!!

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Hee hee… I’m not saying that people who waterski are crazy. But it would be crazy if I tried it since I’m not a very strong swimmer!

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So, you might be wondering if I get any exercise at all! Well, to tell you the truth, I’ve never been very athletic but, as I mention in chapter 7 of Designer Genes, there are other ways to get moving and get some exercise. For example, I love to walk! And I walk very fast. Some of my friends have to jog a little to keep with me at times. Hee! Also, because our home is in a three-storey building, I walk up and down a couple of flights of stairs many, many times a day. Sometimes I’ll go bowling with friends, or help shovel snow at home or at church. I basically try to move as much as I can, even if I’m not participating in an actual sport.

One of the problems nowadays is that a lot of young people will plunk themselves down in front of a computer or TV screen and not move for a few hours. It’s one thing not to do a lot of sports because (a) you don’t have time, (b) you don’t really like sports or (c) you’re just not good at them… but it’s a whole lot worse to not move around at all.

What about you? How active are you? Try to get into the habit of staying active while you’re still young. Not only will you stay in shape, but your heart, bones and muscles will be happy and healthy!

Here are some fun ways you can get moving! (Yes, even vacuuming can be fun! ) 😀 Which ones would you enjoy?

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Did you enjoy the Corny Sports Jokes in this chapter? Here are a few more!

Q: Why does it take longer to run from second base to third base than it takes to run from first to second?

A: Because you have a short stop between second and third.

Q: How do baseball players stay cool?

A: They sit next to the fans.

Q: What is harder to catch the faster you run?

A: Your breath!

Don’t forget to visit again next week! We’ll be starting Section 2 of Designer Genes. Woohoo!

Ann-Margret

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Chapter 6 – Say No, Stay Sober – page 30

You may wonder why there’s a chapter in Designer Genes about the dangers of smoking, alcohol, and drugs. Most young girls already know those substances are harmful for them and maybe even think they’re gross, right? I’m pretty sure if someone came up to you and said, “Hey kid… want some dope?” you’d give them a weird look and say something like, “No! Are you crazy?”

But did you know that more and more kids in middle school or junior high are being pressured to try drugs? And a lot of them are giving in! You may not feel tempted now (or even later) to try a cigarette or have a beer, but knowing what the risks are can help you in two ways:

  • You can have more confidence when you say “no” because you’ll know you’re doing something smart… not something “uncool”.
  • You can help a friend who may find it difficult to say “no”.

You’ve only got one body and one brain. If you take good care of them, they will take care of you! If you put garbage into them, one day you may be…

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I like to think of my body as being on loan to me from God. It actually belongs to Him, so I need to keep it pure and healthy!  

Here’s a word search puzzle that will remind you of some reasons not to smoke! (If you want to print it out to work on it, just right-click on it with your mouse and choose “Print picture”.)

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You can find more word search puzzles on all kinds of subjects here: http://www.thepotters.com/puzzles/kids.html 

For more information about the dangers of alcohol, drugs, and smoking, check out these links on the PBS Kids Go! Web site…

Thinking About Drinking

Drug Abuse

The Smoking Scene

Have a great day! And remember that you can write to me at any time: designergenes@annhovsepian.com.

Ann-Margret

Chapter 5 – You Are What You Eat – page 25

What did you have for breakfast this morning? I’m actually eating mine while I write this (which is not the best way to eat breakfast, so please don’t follow my example!) I’m having a Kellogg’s Honey-Nut All-Bran bar and a fresh orange.

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I used to have the very bad habit of skipping breakfast, so this is a pretty good improvement!

Our bodies are kind of like cars. They can’t start without fuel!

Did you know that kids who eat breakfast every morning tend to do better in school? They are also less hyper and don’t get in trouble as much. Why do you think that is?

Well, think about it… If your body doesn’t get the proper nourishment it needs, you’re going to feel tired and maybe even grumpy. I don’t know about you, but it’s harder for me to be nice and to concentrate when I’m grumpy!

So, try to get some milk, fruit and cereal into your “car” before you start your day!

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In this week’s chapter in Designer Genes, I listed some Fun Food Facts. I hope you enjoyed those! Here are a few more that may surprise you…

  • Lemons contain more sugar than strawberries. (That surprised me! Lemons are so sour!)
  • Strawberries were first discovered in Virginia.

strawberries.jpg Mmm… Thanks, Virginia! 😀

  • Chop suey doesn’t come from China. It was created by Chinese people in California!
  • It takes 3,500 calories to make one pound of fat. (That means you also have to burn 3,500 to lose one pound of fat!)
  • Peanuts are used in making dynamite!
  • Corn is grown on every continent except Antarctica.
  • An ear of corn always has an even number of rows. (That’s crazy! Who actually sat there and counted them all?? But how cool that God made them that way!)

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  • There are 7,500 varieties of apples grown around the world.
  • French fries were first created in Belgium!
  • In Japan, the most popular topping on a Domino’s pizza is… squid!

Check out this site for a lot more interesting information!

I hope you enjoy the Bible readings for this week (don’t forget to write down your answers!) and that God will help you to make sure you get the proper nourishment for your body… and for your soul!

Have a fantastic week! 😀

Ann-Margret

Chapter 4 – What’s Happening to Me? – page 20

I don’t know too many girls who don’t love butterflies…

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What is it about butterflies that attracts us to them so much? Is it their beauty? Is it the way they dance around, flapping their delicate little wings? Is it because we don’t see them often so it’s really special when we spot one? Or is it because we appreciate how much they struggle to turn from a creepy, crawly caterpillar into a wonderfully free butterfly?

You are just like a butterfly! Tween and teen girls can go through a lot of difficult and confusing days. You may worry about your height, your weight, your hair, or your skin. You may compare yourself to other girls and think you’re not developing fast enough… or you’re developing too fast! Maybe you’re confused about what you’re good at, how to make friends, what to be when you grow up, who to trust… aaaaaargh! 

Does it every go away?

Yup! 😀

One day you’ll look back and think, “Hey! That wasn’t so bad!” Sure, you’re going to have some yucky days, but don’t ever forget that there’s a God-designed butterfly inside you developing that’s going to emerge at just the right time. In the meantime, be patient with yourself… and remember that even caterpillars are cute and fun and special!

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This week’s chapter in Designer Genes gets into some of the issues that make girls uncomfortable… things you may feel embarrassed talking about. I want you to know that if you want to send me a question… or even just to tell me what bugs you… you can do that! No one else will see your note. If I can, I’ll answer your question. If not, I’ll try to give you an idea where you might find help. But for sure I will pray for you! You can write to: designergenes@annhovsepian.com.

Have a great day!

Ann-Margret

Chapter 3 – Be Aware of What You Wear! – page 14

I need to let you know that there’s a printing error for this chapter in the book. The very first section talks about the different symbols people often wear, but not all the symbols came out right. There’s a blank space for the zodiac signs and the yin and yang symbol is missing the dots. They actually look like this:

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This week in Designer Genes, we talk about the importance of dressing in a way that’s appropriate for a Christian girl… or even an older Christian woman! There’s a great article about “modeling modesty” on the Brio Web site that I think you’ll enjoy. Check it out here!

I think it’s tough to be a tween these days and to know what to wear. Everything about our clothes sends a bit of a message: the colours, the style, the fit, the graphics. Girls may feel that ruffles, pastels, flowers or anything “cute” makes them look like kids… and what they really want is to look grown up. So we see some 10-year-olds going to school in tight jeans, cropped tops, lots of make-up, platform shoes, and anything else that makes them feel “sexy”.

What do you think? Does it matter? Are clothes just clothes… or do they say something about us?

Take a look in the mirror. What do you think your style says about you? That you’re fun? Creative? Sporty? Flirty? Spoiled? Hmmm… something to think about!

Remember, it’s not just the words that come out of our mouths that tell people what’s in our hearts and minds. As Christians, the way we act and dress should also reflect that we love God!

Body Language

Here’s another fun (but important) tip to keep in mind. Your posture — how you stand or sit, what you do with your hands, etc. — can say a lot about you, too, no matter how well you’re dressed! Just a few examples:

  • Slouching can be a sign of disrespect or boredom… like you aren’t interested in what’s going on or in the person talking to you. (It’s also really bad for your back!)

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  • Rolling your eyes at someone tells them that you’re frustrated with them or think that what they’re saying is stupid. It’s quite disrespectful so try not to get into the habit of doing it.

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  • Fidgeting (for example, playing with your hair, pulling on your sleeves, or (yuck!) biting your nails) sends the message that you’re nervous or worried.

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  • Crossing your arms (loosely) or putting your hands on your hips might intimidate people, giving them the impression that you’re not very friendly.

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  • Flipping your hair all the time, touching too much, and standing too close to someone can make you seem like a flirt. Some people might feel uncomfortable around you. (Sorry, I tried for quite a while but couldn’t find a photo of a girl flicking her hair!)

What do you think when someone giggles too much? If she always talks in a fake-sounding high-pitched voice? If she wears lots of jewellery? If her clothes are wrinkled and dirty? If she freaks out about a broken nail, a small stain or her hair getting wet?

This week, think and pray about the messages you might be sending out about yourself!

Ann-Margret

Please write to me at designergenes@annhovsepian.com!