Grandparent Custody Rights

lance t marshall law officesGrandparents enjoy special rights when it comes to visitation and physical custody of their grandchildren. Before filing for either type of custody/visitation, grandparents must first establish standing. Pennsylvania is among the states offering protection from lawsuits to intact families. In other words, if mom and dad are still together, grandparents cannot file for custody.

Grandparents may file for visitation only in specific circumstances: if the parent who is their child has died; if the parents are divorced; or if the parents have filed for divorce or have been separated for six months or more. In these circumstances, the court is instructed to consider the amount of personal contact that took place before the application.

In an additional scenario, if the child resided with the grandparent for twelve months or more and was removed from the grandparent’s home by parents, the court may award partial physical custody or supervised physical custody, but suit must be filed within six months after the removal.

In all the situations listed above, the court must consider whether visitation is in the child’s best interest and whether visitation with grandparents would interfere with the parent-child relationship. Great grandparents have the same rights as grandparents, and adoption terminates visitation rights unless the adopting party is a stepparent, grandparent or great-grandparent.

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Firetree Place Upcoming Events

Firetree Place’s mission engages the community through enrichment activities and provides resources that will strengthen the community as a whole. Firetree Place ensures the educational and personal enrichment of our area’s youth, families, and seniors by providing comprehensive programs, camps, workshops, seminars and more!
We strive to make lasting changes in our community and in the lives of those we touch by offering comprehensive youth and community-oriented programs that are designed to promote unity, social awareness, and enrichment.
Something for Everyone: Firetree Place Programs
We provide programs and activities directed toward empowering area youth, parents, adults to regain control of their lives, homes, and neighborhoods and to collectively work together to strengthen our diverse community.

Upcoming Events:


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Community Conversations

Voting Makes a Difference In Our Community!

Join us on Thursday, October 15 at 6pm to 8pm to discuss this very important topic.
Light refreshments will be provided. This event is free and open to the public.

Firetree Place Flea Market

Join us every Saturday from 9am – 3pm at the Firetree Place Flea Market where you will find great bargains and food vendors!

If you would like to be a vendor at this event, call us at 570.360.9946.

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Halloween Party

You’re Invited!
Come out and join the fun on Friday, Oct-30 from 5pm-7pm at Firetree Place. Children of all ages are welcome.
Please call 570.360.9946 to register for this event.

How to Prepare a Holiday Dinner

Nov-24 6pm-8pm

Learn how to prepare a holiday meal with all of the fixings. All participants will be entered into a drawing to win a free turkey.

This event is free and open to the public. Call 570.360.9946 to register.

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Holiday Craft Show

There will be a variety of unique gifts and handcrafted items for everyone on your shopping list. There will be live bands, live broadcasting, cooking demonstrations, face painting, Chinese auction, food to purchase and Santa with something for the kiddos!

If you would like to participate as a vendor for this event please call Jackie Caesar-Wherry at 570.447.4041
You don’t want to miss this holiday event!

Saturday, Dec-12
@Firetree Place

You’re Invited!

Join us for holiday fun and cheer!
There will be caroling, cookies, crafts and gifts for children of all ages.

Thursday, Dec-17

11am-1pm for toddlers

5pm-7pm for ages 5 and up.

Please call to register 570.360.9946.

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Get Organized!

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Jeff Ulmer, Owner

With the change of seasons this fall, you’re probably craving some new outfits right about now. But before you cram one more piece of clothing in your closet, think about cleaning it up a bit. Here are a few tips to help:

You know it’s true: there are some things in your closet that you’ll never wear again. This is the perfect time to ditch those wastes of valuable space. Try using these guidelines…
• Anything with a stain that won’t ever come up, regardless of what detergent you try
• Anything with a hole that can’t be hidden or mended
• Anything that makes you think, “Ugh, I hate how this looks on me,” when you actually wear it
• Anything that has purely “sentimental” value (it’s just a piece of clothing. You’ll live without it)
• Anything that will fit you just as soon as you start up that diet again

There are lots of ways to stash your clothing, but you want to do it the right way. Even if you’re working with very limitedclosets plus 2 space, try to follow the following:
• Store seasonal items away – give the primo space to things you actually wear
• Try to maintain a balance of items – when you add something, see if there’s something worn or old that you can take away
• Don’t hang your sweaters or knits; instead, fold them to help them retain their shape
• Group similar items together (pants, jackets, etc.) to help you assemble outfits quickly

Unless your closet has been “maximized” (something we do at Closet Plus) no amount of massaging can fit 25 feet of clothing into a 15-foot closet. If you have too many “must keep” clothes for your closet’s space, stuffing everything in is not helpful – you’ll only create a headache for yourself later. Instead, consider a closet organization system.

Whether you need a pro to organize your space or just want some ideas of your own, stop by our showroom in Selinsgrove to get some ideas. Make this the season you get organized. Call Closets Plus Today For a free Design Consultation 888 649 2969 or Visit us online at We know you will be glad you did. You can also “like” us on Facebook to keep up to date on new offerings. “55 minutes The amount of time an average American spends each day looking for things he/she has but can’t find.” – Good Housekeeping


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Golfing Made Easier with Chiropractic!

It’s that time of year again! The sun is shining and everyone wants to be outside. Doesn’t it feel so good to be out in the fresh air again? Now that the weather is heating up, many people cannot wait to get outside and play some golf. It’s a sport that people of all ages enjoy, and you never know from one day to the next how you will make out. Although golfing is a fun game, many times players suffer from common injuries. The repetitive torque from swinging the clubs often causes a variety of pain. Listed below are four common golf injuries and how chiropractic can help get you back in the game.

1. Back Pain- This is the most common golfing injury. Swinging clubs in the same direction over and over again causes a lot of torque on the spine especially in the low back area. The repetitive motion can lead to disc injuries, muscle strains, and stress fractures. In our office, Drs. Kevin, Kelli, and Kerri can perform spinal manipulations to relieve pain and pressure from disc injuries. The doctors are also highly trained in whole food nutrition, which can help with ligament support and bone building processes needed after a stress fracture.

2. Golfer’s Elbow- This injury refers to medial or inside elbow pain. Pain in this area is often aggravated with gripping the clubs or during impact of hitting the ball. The doctors in our office are highly trained in applied kinesiology. This technique can help to reset muscles that have been injured around the joint. By fixing the muscles, pain and inflammation can be reduced.

3. Knee Pain- Knees are often affected with golfing due to the rotational forces. Keeping feet planted while swinging the clubs can irritate ligaments and muscles. Constant bending and squatting to gage the green or pick up golf balls
can also affect golfers’ knees. Regular chiropractic care can help stabilize the muscles around the knee and ensure proper adjusting occurs to create proper motion within the joint. At Hands in Health, the doctors may also use cold laser
therapy, which can help decrease inflammation within the joint.

4. Shoulder Pain- Shoulder injuries are caused from repetitive swinging motions during golf. Drs. Kevin, Kelli, and Kerri can all adjust the shoulder joints to decrease pain. Kinesiotape can also be used to help rehab the shoulder while it heals. Kinesiotape is the colorful tape that many athletes use that acts as ice on the joint, but does not restrict motion. Since 21 muscles attach to the shoulder, many times muscles can become imbalanced. Proper strengthening and stretching exercises can be incorporated during proper rehabilitation.

Golfing is an enjoyable sport. The game is growing in popularity among both men and women. Help your body to prevent injury and recover quickly with chiropractic care. At Hands in Health, our doctors work thoroughly to ensure proper healing. If you have questions or would like to schedule an appointment in one of our office locations, please call us. We are excited to help you feel well and get back in the game. The Greatest Wealth is Your Health!

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Spring Hair Make-Over Contest Winners

Last issue we asked The Women’s Journal readers to send me an email for a chance to win a FREE spring hair make-over! Well, the entries are in and fate has guided the draw. We had a great response so one model didn’t seem like enough. Our lucky ladies are Denise with short, flat, uneventful hair in her “before,” and Colette with a long, heavy, “I’ve been growing this forever” look.

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These ladies were really fun to work with and both told me to do what I would like. However, as a designer, I learned a long time ago that I don’t have to live with what I do. So we sat down and discussed what would be the best within the frame of their daily lives.

Denise is a wife, mother, professional dress maker and owner of “Restitch Studio” here in State College. This is one talented and busy lady. The last thing she needs in the morning is another project. Also, little children (and sometimes Dads) don’t often like Mommy coming home looking markedly different.

So for Denise, a simple three-dimensional precision cut introduced the actual shape of her head into the style line she already had. It’s a simple formula: if the cut is sculpted to the shape of the skull, it has to fit the face. Next I established volume and freedom of movement with point and texture techniques. Then for added dimension, I applied color two levels darker then her natural shade to the temporal area, dovetailing a nice blend towards the nape of her neck. Foiled highlights two levels lighter added lift throughout the top and bang areas. The process is simple, but the difference is pronounced.

Colette is a wife and the mother of identical twin girls (who look remarkably not identical!) She sells jewelry and prepares lunches for a school full of children—and usually does all of this in a single day’s work! Again, a lady who doesn’t need more to do in the morning. My considerations for Dad and the girls were the same as for Denise’s family; we want Mom to look like Mom.

A 3-D precision cut for Colette with point and texture techniques (to add body and break up her natural wave pattern) did the trick and her hair did the rest of the work itself. Colette already has a warm medium to dark brown tint on her hair. So we didn’t tamper with an already nice finish. Again, the process is simple, the difference extraordinary.

Whatever the time of year, a seasonal makeover does not have to change your life in order to lift your spirits. An understanding of your life style combined with well executed design work can give you a little something to look forward to during Pennsylvania’s cycle of seasons.

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Millbrook-My Vaudeville ManJuly 28, 2015 (Mill Hall, PA) The Board of Directors and Artistic Director, David Leidholdt, are pleased to announce the Pennsylvania Premier of My Vaudeville Man in the Poorman Cabaret.

“My little Jackie, my oldest, has run off to tour in Vaudeville” so sings Mud Donahue, when her 19-year-old tap-dancing whiz of a son runs away from home, Jack Donahue, a young man born to dance and an Irish Catholic mother desperately trying to save her baby boy from life upon the wicked stage. My Vaudeville Man is a moving musical comedy that takes us through the life of tap dancing legend Jack Donahue.

This endearing musical follows “eccentric dancer” Jack Donahue proving to his mother that his passion lies in performing on the vaudeville stage. When Jack runs off to play the small-time New England Circuit, Mrs. Donahue is left with two children and a dead-beat husband, who is off on another one of his benders. The more success Jack finds, the more his mother is left trying to hold her splintering family together. In a series of musical skits and short dramatic scenes that skim over the vaudevillians career. My Vaudeville Man follows Jack from his start as a cocky teenager performing on the small-time vaudeville circuit to the big-time at the Palace and eventually as a star in Broadway musicals.

My Vaudeville Man is a mother-son love story about following your dreams, second chances, and the sacrifices we make for the people we love the most. This heartwarming, foot-tapping, and whimsical new musical is a must see that will reaffirm that love is the key to every family relationship.

Based on “Letters of a Hoofer to His Ma”, Book and Lyrics by Jeff Hochhauser, Music and Lyrics by Bob Johnston, Directed by Joshua Kelly, Music Directed by Martina Rodgers, Choreography by Courtney Laine Self, Set Design by Joshua E. Gallagher, Costume Design by Kim Jones, Lighting Design by Ethan Vail, Props Design by Denise Lalevee, and Sound Design by Simon Ghezzi.

The cast includes Matthew Fairlee as Jack Donahue and Millbrook favorite Shannon Agnew as Mud Donahue.

Tickets are $25 for adults, $15 for students and $10 for children. My Vaudeville Man runs July 31 – August 2, August 5 – 9 at 7:30pm and August 5 at 2:00pm. Special one night only meet the authors of My Vaudeville Man after the performance on Thursday, August 6th. Group rates are available. Purchase tickets by calling 570-748-8083,online at or by coming to the box office any day of the week.



What do I need to know about genetics and breast cancer?

SusquehannaBreastHealthWhat role do genes play in breast cancer?
Knowing your family history helps you understand your risk for breast cancer. Every living being has a genetic code, a combination of their parents’ genes, which makes them unique. Mutations (changes) in certain genes can make it more likely for cells to become cancerous. Specific mutations of the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes are linked to breast, ovarian and other types of cancer.

Should everyone be tested for the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes?
No, not everyone needs to be tested. Your family medical history is a good indicator of whether you have the gene mutation. WHO in your family had breast or ovarian cancer and their AGE at diagnosis are important. Try to get histories for three generations before you. Having ovarian cancer, at any age, raises the question of a genetic mutation. Other conditions possibly linked with genetic mutations include cancers of the pancreas, thyroid, colon, bones and soft tissue as well as melanoma. The BRCA gene mutations are also more prevalent in people with Ashkenazi Jewish ancestry. Sometimes women are concerned about their risks if a female relative had breast cancer after menopause. Commonly, this history does not increase breast cancer risk and does not imply a genetic mutation, but it is still important to record. Also, cervical, endometrial and uterine cancers are important to keep track of but are rarely suggestive of a genetic mutation.

At what age should a woman think about her genetic risk for breast cancer?
At age 18, when a person becomes a legal adult, is the earliest age to consider breast cancer risk. See your doctor
to discuss your details including your ethnicity, whether you’ve had any cancers and your family history. If your doctor
believes it’s indicated, the next step is to talk to a genetic counselor about testing—a simple mouth swab or blood
test. Older women, who have survived ovarian or breast cancer, may consider having genetic testing to make other
relatives and younger generations aware of whether or not a genetic mutation exists.

What if I have the BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation?
Finding the genetic mutation is very rare, but if it is present, there are ways to reduce your cancer risks. The priority
is eliminating the risk for ovarian cancer because it doesn’t produce symptoms until it is very advanced. For women
who are through childbearing, removal of the ovaries and fallopian tubes is very effective—reducing your risks
for ovarian cancer by 90 percent and for breast cancer by 50 percent. To reduce the risk of breast cancer,
closely managed screenings, every six months, are very effective as is the use of certain medications.
Preventive mastectomy reduces the risk by 95 percent.

If I test negative for the genes, or there’s no family history, do I even have to think about breast cancer?
Genetic mutations are responsible for just five percent of all breast cancer cases. There are other risk factors
that can lead to the condition—age at menses, age at first childbirth, weight, and lifestyle are all factors. The majority
of doctors in our nation agree that the best way for women, who do not have a family history, to detect breast cancer
at its earliest stage is through annual mammograms beginning at age 40.

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Long Term Care Insurance

Judy SharerWhat is Long Term Care insurance? Long Term Care insurance (LTC) assists you or your loved ones with the costs associated with Activities of Daily Living. ADLs are defined as those functions you perform in your daily life such as eating, bathing, and dressing. Some policies will cover costs associated with other everyday tasks such as taking medication, shopping and light housework. These services may be provided in your home or another facility. It is important to note that these are non-medical in nature.

According to, 70% of people 65 or older will use some form of LTC during their lifetime. Because women tend to outlive their spouses, we may have a period of time where we live alone in our later years. We may need someone to help with our care. By the age of 90, 69% of us will have some sort of disability requiring assistance with the Activities of Daily Living.

I am often asked, “What about Medicare?” Medicare covers only the medically necessary costs such as doctor visits, medication and hospital stays. You must also meet eligibility requirements to receive Medicare. Although Medicare will help cover some costs associated with home health care, skilled nursing or hospice care, it does not cover the costs of custodial care.

The costs associated with LTC can be staggering. In Pennsylvania in 2012 the average annual cost of a semi-private room in a nursing home was $94,619. It is projected that this cost could be as much as $264,650 in 2037. Make that a private room and the cost soars to $336,244.

LTC is not a one-size-fits-all insurance policy. Long Term Care policies can cover a range of options from in-home care to adult day facilities to skilled nursing. The cost of a policy can vary greatly as well. By purchasing a policy as a younger, healthy individual we would expect to see lower premiums than if we were to wait an additional 10 years. I recommend clients look into the purchase of their LTC policy between the ages of 54-65. Another option is to plan
to use other assets first to shorten your coverage period; 70% of new policies cover 3-5 years of care. Couples can purchase shared policies that allow a piggy back of care from one spouse to the other. Other types of policies include hybrid plans that combine life insurance with Long Term Care.

Many states, including Pennsylvania, offer LTC Partnership Plans. This is a joint federal-state initiative used to encourage more people to purchase LTC policies which in turn helps to keep the government coffers full. These are sometimes called “spend down” plans. They work like this: for each dollar you purchase in LTC coverage, there is
an equal “asset disregard” for Medicaid eligibility. For example, if you purchase $150,000 of LTC coverage under the partnership program, you will be allowed to keep that $150,000 plus the allowable Medicaid assets. This may help to keep a spouse in your home should you need a skilled nursing facility. A benefit of this program is that those assets
are protected at your death from Medicaid estate recovery.

Choosing a Long Term Care policy does not have to be a daunting experience. While setting other goals for your future, take the time to talk with your financial advisor. These professionals can guide you through the myriad of options for coverage. This additional step in planning for your golden years will help put your mind at ease.

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Paint & Sip Party

paint partyJoin the party! We will be holding a Paint & Sip event at Best Western Hotel in State College, PA on August 13th. Arrive at 5:30pm to choose your seat. Instruction lasts from 6-8pm. BYOB Welcome. Must be 21 years and up for this event. Space is limited so call now to reserve your seat! Must prepay and preregister: $35 per person covers the cost of instruction and the materials necessary for you to complete a one of a kind masterpiece. Whether beginner, intermediate, or advanced, all levels of artistic ability are welcome!

Paint Party by Sarah is the premier traveling arts service based in Altoona, PA offering Paint & Sip parties, children’s parties, and corporate events. One of our goals is to give back to our community and support local businesses. We have held parties at local churches and schools as fundraisers. Monthly we hold public events at local businesses including Fired Up Ceramics Co. and Competitive Sports Academy.

Sarah Jubeck, art instructor and owner, has her Bachelor’s degree of Fine Arts in drawing and painting. She has experience teaching art and working with diverse populations. Sarah believes that anyone can learn to paint. What better way to unwind than having fun painting with friends!

Sarah Jubeck
Paint Party by Sarah (814) 327-7653
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Check out our calendar:


Millbrook Presents; ” Leading Ladies”

The Board of Directors and Artistic Director, David Leidholdt, are pleased to announce Millbrook’s next production of Leading Ladies in the Poorman Cabaret.

Just like “Some Like It Hot”, Leading Ladies ​offers a night of fun, laughter, and mistaken identities​. Out of work actors, Leo and Jack, learn that heiress Florence Snyder has left part of her fortune to her long lost relatives Max and Steve. So, they decide to impersonate them, collect the money, and run off to California. The trouble is, upon their arrival, they find out that the relatives aren’t nephews, but nieces​! With nothing but a few costumes for some of Shakespeare’s greatest female characters, such as Cleopatra and Titania, Queen of the Fairies, they decide to give it a try.

Things become more complicated when Leo, as Maxine, begins to fall for Florence’s niece, Meg. Worse, Meg is engaged to the local minister, Duncan, who is immediately suspicious of the “ladies.” Poor Jack can’t help but fall for the lovely, but ditzy, Audrey, yet his alter ego, Stephanie, has drawn the eye of both Doc and his son Butch. Their desperate attempts to keep themselves under cover (and in high heels​) will have audiences rolling on the floor​. Author Ken Ludwig (Lend Me A Tenor and ​Moon Over Buffalo​) does it again by writing a side­splitting comedy. Directed by Robert Schneider​, Assistant Directed/Fight Directed by Andrew Garret Karl​, Set Design by Joshua E. Gallagher​, Costume Design by Kim Jones​, Lighting Design by Ethan Vail​, Props Design by Denise Lalevee​, and Sound Design by Joshua J. Duguid​.

The cast includes James Cella as Leo, Brett Epstein as Jack, Alexandra Frost as Meg, Grace Experience as Audrey, Paul Moore as Doc, Brady Adair as Duncan, Shannon Agnew​as Florence, and Matt Spencer​as Butch.

Tickets are $25 for adults, $15 for students and $10 for children. Leading Ladies runs June 26 -28, July 1 – 3, and July 8 – 11 at 7:30pm and July 1 and 8 at 2:00pm. Group rates are available. You can purchase tickets by calling 570-748-8083, online at, or by coming to the box any day of the week.


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James Cella as Leo, Brett Epstein as Jack. Photo by Caleb Essenthier

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James Cella as Leo, Brett Epstein as Jack. Photo by Caleb Essenthier