March 3 is National Pancake Day

Get a free short stack (one per person) at IHOP!

IHOP hopes you will donate money for the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals in honor of this special day. Our local IHOP is at 5301 Agoura Road at Kanan.

national pancake day

Or, celebrate at home on this amazing confluence of events: Pancake Tuesday. It’s a nutty day in my house, when there are sports practices and homework and husbands getting home late. So I started making pancakes on Tuesday 2 years ago, and it stuck. For some recipe inspiration, check out this collection I made at the Pinterest-for-food-lovers,

Check out 12 Versions of Pancake Tuesday

by Kim Tracy Prince at

3rd Grader Organizes Book Drive for Casa Pacifica

book drive

Killian B., an Agoura Hills 3rd grader, is collecting gently used children’s books for the foster children of Casa Pacifica. You drop your books off in the collection bin outside of Stevenson Fitness in Oak Park (at the corner of Kanan and Lindero Canyon).

Her mother told me that the bin already filled up once. It will be outside the gym through this week.

If a 3rd grader can cook up this idea and actually follow through with it, don’t you think we should support her? Go, Killian!


Stevenson Fitness

706 Lindero Canyon Road

Oak Park


Kids Can Give Back With Charity Checks

donation box

I want to model giving back for my children. I have done this with my work for Help a Mother Out, a group that gets diapers to needy families. I do it with my volunteering at their school, and we do it together when we prepare donations of our gently used goods to local charities, and non-perishable food for the food bank.

But giving the children the power to choose what charity they want to help? I’ve never come across an opportunity as easy as Charity Checks.

With Charity Checks, you donate money, and you get blank checks that total the amount of your donation. Then you give the blank checks to people as gifts. In turn, they fill out the recipient – any registered 503(c) charitible organization in the US – and send it in.

That means if you donate $50 and ask for two $25 checks, you can give one to each child (if you have two children, like I do) and they can choose what charity gets the money. So if you have a child who loves to conserve and recycle, he can choose a environmental charity. If you have one who cares deeply about animals, he can choose a shelter. If one of your children cares about babies, she can pick Help a Mother Out!

People purchase Charity Checks as business gifts for employees or clients. Instead of the “A Donation to ____ Has Been Made in Your Name” message, why not send a Charity Check and have the recipient pick the group of their choice?

You can order Charity Checks online, and they take PayPal! If you buy Charity Checks on Giving Tuesday (December 2), you aren’t just getting your holiday shopping done- you’re part of a movement to give back.