The arrival of August is a countdown to summer’s end, and a return to a more scheduled life for many families. If you haven’t taken a summer vacation yet, now’s the time to squeeze one in. I much prefer our natural ‘theme parks’, and
North Florida has many within a short drive. Beach vacations or freshwater springs are my personal favorites. Family-friendly state park facilities make it easy to enjoy our area’s natural beauty with the entire family.

Rediscover the joy of riding a bike again; it really is something you never forget. I find it impossible to be anything but joyous when coasting on my bike. No surprise that biking has positive effects on the brain and can improve cognitive function, depression and more. Spinning can even benefit brain disorders, including Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Read about it on page 16.



Many families have children heading back to school this month and it’s an ideal time to consider the challenges they’ll face. Raising resilient and resourceful children in a society that seems to move faster with each year is a challenge. There are many reasons to tune into what those in your care are facing as they navigate life offline as well as online. Read about “21st Century Parenting” on page 10. Meredith Montgomery confronts many issues facing our youth and offers suggestions to support their development in a world
vastly different than the one we grew up in. 

Our animal companions offer tremendous health benefits, both physical and emotional. The indelible bond with our pets is the focus of our August spotlight on animals. Using holistic methods to keep our pets in top health is the focus of our Natural Pet feature this month. Blending traditional and holistic approaches to wellness benefits our pets and their humans too.

Be sure to explore our event calendar starting on page 32. Whether you want to learn mindful meditation, practice yoga, or try container gardening or hiking, there’s something in our calendar to nudge you in new directions. Our intention for you is to make this your best August ever. Enjoy this edition, and we’ll see you next month.