Her Times
By Pam Parker Erie Times-News staff blogger
Pam Parker's blog takes on everything from women's fun to momisms to lifestyles around Lake Erie and real estate. She'll take you down Memory Lane, up through sports and fun and off the grid. Get ready for laughs — it's more than just Pam. It's Pamdemonium.   Read more about this blog.
 Phone: 814-870-1821
Posts tagged ‘pennsylvania’
Posted: February 4th, 2013

ExamThe Wall Street Journal and countless media outlets reported Education Week’s best and worst school systems by state in the United States last month, and the report on Yahoo.com is below:

Top 10

  1. Maryland ranked at the top for the fifth straight year
  2. Massachusetts
  3. New York
  4. Virginia
  5. Arkansas
  6. Florida
  7. Georgia
  8. New Jersey
  9. West Virginia
  10. Kentucky

Bottom 10:

  1. South Dakota
  2. Nevada
  3. Idaho
  4. Alaska
  5. Mississppi
  6. Nebraska
  7. Montana
  8. Arizona
  9. Oregon
  10. Missouri

But it’s not the only study. Michelle Rhee, has her own report, according to Huffington Post. She is the former Washington, D.C., schools chancellor and chair of StudentsFirst. Click on that link for a map of the U.S. with grades per state. Pennsylvania gets a D.

Frankly, I am way more interested in education reports than in daily national media coverage of Notre Dame All-American linebacker Manti Te’o’s creation of a virtual girlfriend debacle and whether or not Beyonce lip synced the national anthem. It’s time we all made education a priority.

Pam Parker is the editor of Lake Erie LifeStyle, Her Times and House to Home at the Erie Times-News in Erie, Pa. She is the mom of three, stepmom to three and step-grandmom to one.  


Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: July 30th, 2012


Her name is synonymous with winning — Quad games, triathalons, duathlons and more. In Pittsburgh, Erie’s Pamela McCormick finished second among women and 28th overall in the International Distance Triathlon Sunday. It included a600-meter swim in the Allegheny River, a 20K bike race through Pittsburgh and a 5K run along the Allegheny River.

McCormick, 39, continues her dominance of sporting events. The mom of seven finished the International Distance Triathlon in 2 hours, 13 minutes, 44 seconds. McCormick has qualified to represent Pennsylvania in the Best of the U.S. 2012 Championship.

She was also the fastest female finisher at the A Tri in the Buff triathlon with a time of 2 hours, 26 minutes, 6 seconds on July 7 in Buffalo. It was the first time she had competed in the event.

For all us moms, she’s an inspiration. And Pamela is the daughter of Denise Illig Robison and the late Robbie Robison. Denise is an athlete in her own right. I have played tennis with her for years.

Pam Parker, an avid tennis player with bad knees, ran for years, but never raced — except with her kids. Pam’s daughter is a former McDowell High School track star with numerous state championship medals and the title of cross country runner of the year. Pam is the editor of Lake Erie LifeStyleHer Times and House to Home at the Erie Times-News in Erie, Pa.

Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: January 11th, 2012

I am a big fan of CND and Gelish nails. CND stands for Creative Nail Designs, a company that created a nail craze with a shellac manicure that lasts 14 days – no chips no smears. I’ve gotten up to three weeks out of these manicures. I’ve been a pretty regular customer in regional salons for more than a year now. And I like the pedicures, too. CND uses a UV light to cure and dry the layers of base coat, polish and top coat while Gelish uses non-UV lamps. Both give you manicures that remain shiny for the full 14 days.

When I first got a CND manicure more than a year ago, they were hard to come by because the service was so popular. At one point,  even the few salons that offered it in the region had a hard time getting the polishes.

What a difference a year makes. Now you can give yourself a CND shellac manicure at home for the cost of the nail dryer and polishes. My daughter bought me the dryer, and got an incredible deal on it through Amazon. I have raised a shopper in that girl. She also got a deal on the polishes. Now, this stuff is not cheap. The dryer’s retail price is more than $100, but with sales and coupons, they are available for much less..

I’m not really good at manicures, but I will master this. I’ll still visit my friends in the nail salons because I love chatting it up with nail technicians who do some artsy things mere mortals like me will never accomplish. I’ve been to Charisma, Ambridge Rose, Horizon and Lena’s. They can sparkle your nails, marble them and add beauty that require skill I will never have.

For my daughter and me, getting manicures and pedicures together is a nice bonding experience. We will save some money and time doing our nails at home the next time she is in town. Or, we may have to meet in Grove City and hang out someplace that we can plug in. At any rate, the cost of the dryer pays for itself within the first few months because the cheapest manicure I ever got was between $25 and $30.

This has some other potential as a party invitation. My daughter and friends have some pretty awesome spa parties where they do facials and nails. Mud and shellac, here we come.



Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: December 21st, 2011

I was out last night, and dragged my husband, Kim. I’ll be out again tonight. And tomorrow and … and my kids will be joining me. It’s sort of a tradition. But if you still want to order something online, supposedly you can. I received a news release on who delivers the fastest.

I do know this. Years ago, long before the Internet was on our phones, I ordered a video game  for one of the kids, and it did show up on Christmas Eve thanks to whatever delivery service promised delivery by Christmas. So here’s the skinny on what STELLAService had to say about top 25 retailers. To test delivery, STELLAService ordered six products via standard shipping (or similar method) during November and December 2011.Two items from each retailer were shipped to the West Coast, Midwest and East Coast.

Key findings include:
- The 8 fastest retailers had an average shipping time of three days or less:
  • Zappos.com (2 days)
  • Newegg.com (2.3 days)
  • HPshopping.com (2.5 days)
  • JCPenney.com (2.7 days)
  • Amazon.com, (2.7 days)
  • Gap.com (2.8 days)
  • Dell.com (2.8 days)
  • SonyStyle.com (2.8 days)

By now, if you choose standard shipping, I’m guessing you are at risk of a post-Christmas delivery no matter who you are. But here’s some good news: American Eagle and L.L. Bean are still promising delivery but today, Dec. 21, is it folks. Or – -we’ll see you at the stores!

Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: October 31st, 2011

The past few days, lead has been in the news. Today’s article by David Bruce  in the Erie Times-News discussed the rise in lead poisoning. “The number of lead-poisoning cases among Erie County children has quadrupled in 2011,” Bruce wrote. “One hundred and seven cases have been reported to the Erie County Department of Health through Sept. 30, compared with 25 cases during the same period in 2010.”

Saturday in House to Home, Dwight Barnett  reported some scary stats about our homes:
“According to the Environmental Protection Agency, homes built before 1940 have an 86 percent chance of containing it (lead). Homes built between 1940 and 1959 have a 66 percent chance, and those built between 1960 and 1978 have a 25 percent chance.”
Barnett is a certified master inspector with the American Society of Home Inspectors (d.barnett@insightbb.com.)
I raised my kids in an old house, and I wasn’t concerned about them eating paint, but I was worried because we did a lot of remodeling — that disturbs the walls, lead paint and makes lead dust. Before you tackle a home improvement project in an old house, get a lead test kit — you can find them at Walmart. Or go to epa.gov for more information. These kits are $10 to $20, and worth every penny.

There are solutions to taking care of lead and remodeling. You may need to move your kids out of the house while you’re in a tearing out phase.  It’s an adventure, and if you make it fun, your kids will enjoy it too.


Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: October 7th, 2011

My kids learned long ago to pack their own gym bags when it came to hockey, soccer, football, basketball, cross country and track. When I heard a kid, well not a kid, and not mine — he was a senior in high school — screaming at his mom because she had forgotten to pack his favorite boxers, I was speechless. We were at an out of town game.
What was he going to do the next year when he went to college?
Well we never worried about that at my house. My kids have been dressing themselves and packing their own gym bags since they were old enough to tie their shoes and zip the gym bag.
Not to say we haven’t had a few forgetful dramas, but we all learn from those dramas. Forgotten shoes, socks, jerseys and uniforms are part of an athlete’s life.
We went through a “spell,” as my grandma would say, when all the kids forgot shoes and socks. They managed to wear a teammate’s stuff, and they were cured of that habit. Quickly.
Some of the kids on their teams were from big families and always brought spare socks and shoes for their teammates. Gotta love those kids. And their parents. Like Hillary Clinton said, “It takes a village.”

Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: October 1st, 2011

I dodged the bullet on allergies most of this year, but I am paying for it these past few days. Sneezing and itchy-red eyes are my enemy today. I just took a dose of Allegra, which doesn’t always work. So now I am scanning the list of meds at webmd.com One of the few things that works for me is Singulair, which I pretty much take year round. My prescription ran out, so as soon the Her Times 5K is over — it’s off to the pharmacy.
I know how hard this season is on kids, too. None of the kids had the same results. My son did well on Zyrtec for years, but knocked my daughter out. Same with Benadryl.
Although I do hate the feel and taste of nasal sprays, they work. That’s next in my arsenal today. If you can get kids to try it, they often find that it works so well, it is worth the temporary discomfort. I can guarantee it.
See all you ladies at the 5K — I’m the one with the red eyes!

Posted: September 30th, 2011

I never ask people to vote for anything or anyone. Not on Facebook or anyplace else, but I implore everyone to vote for Liz Allen in the Live Fearlessly contest.
If you don’t know Liz, please read the essay submitted. I do know Liz, and she is an extraordinary woman who faced a lot of sadness in her life losing numerous family members in a short time. Yet, Liz never dwells on the sadness. She is an inspiration for all of us.
Liz is the public editor at the Erie Times-News, and I am proud to have known her for decades. Take just a minute to voter for her today — voting ends tonight.
The contest is a statewide honor, and no one deserves it more than Liz.

Posted: September 27th, 2011

When kids make you laugh so hard, your sides hurt, it might be the middle school years. It’s a time when kids have a somewhat grown-up appearance, but they still have that impishness that makes me grin just thinking about it.
I still laugh when I think of football car pools. No one wanted the return trip home, but I did. The skinny boys of fall were muddy, sweaty and laughing. In our car pool, we had twins who excelled in rapid-fire delivery of Internet jokes that made me laugh so hard, I’d cry.
This hearty half dozen players had also mastered and memorized some “Jeopardy” skits from “Saturday Night Live” starring Will Farrell as the Alex Trebek and Darrell Hammond as Sean Connery.
It was like watching it live.
Now, we also did have practical jokes in school, but these kids did nothing like the tricks I recalled at St. George Elementary School. And many of those kids had grown up to be teachers, principals, lawyers, judges and doctors.
Middle schoolers will make you laugh, make mistakes, make you cry and give you memories. The best advice I ever received about dealing with any of the bad times was from a teacher. “Kids will have rules to follow the rest of their lives. If they break a few now, they’ll learn to stop. We all need to give them a break.
Here’s to middle school mayhem.

Posted: February 10th, 2010

A friend just e-mailed me this & it was entirely appropriate (though admittedly disturbing and twisted) for a day like today when our fair city is, once again, buried.

You know you’ve had a hard winter when you see this…

Don’t we all kinda feel like building one of these right now? (yeah, yeah…I know not EVERYONE does. There are people who actually love this stuff, but…I don’t know many).

Posted in: Funny stuff