In The Bag May 2018


Happy Mother’s Day!

May 2018

I once told one of my friends that my mom didn’t work. He told his mom, and she in turn told my mom. As it turns out, I was wrong. My mom explained to me, “I work probably about as hard as anyone; I just don’t get paid.” I never said my mom doesn’t work again. My mother is an amazing woman, and she’s always taught us to respect ourselves while respecting others. She exemplifies this in her daily life. She respects everyone she knows while also respecting herself, and she’s a true class act. When I was a kid, my mom sent me to school every day with lunch in a paper sack. Without fail, my name and a smiley face was written on the outside. On my 30th birthday, my mom gave me a paper sack with — you guessed it — my name and a smiley face. Inside, it was filled with treats.

I know I wasn’t the easiest kid to raise at times. When I was a teenager, I once invited a few friends over to our house because we were going to make fake IDs. My mom wasn’t supposed to be home, but right as we were in the middle of our shenanigans, with a huge piece of poster board and all the signs of our transgressions out in the open, she walked in the door. I was mortified, and she knew that. Instead of making me feel worse, she told all the kids to go home and had a talk with me. She didn’t blow up or get really angry, both of which would’ve been understandable reactions. She’s always been really good at rolling with the punches. At the end of the day, it’s all about people and relationships, and my mom has always known that. She’s a natural caretaker who always focuses on giving more than she’s taking. She always strives to add value to other people’s lives before trying to take something from someone else. Being a physical therapist, this was something she put into practice every day of her career, both with patients and with her kids. By the same token, Aram, my wife and the mother to our children, is devoted to our family and is selfless when it comes to our kids. When I met Aram, she was doing very well in her career. As soon as our daughters were born, she chose to set aside her professional aspirations to raise them. She’s also taken Ethan on as her own son in a very selfless way. She’s chosen to be a full-time mother, one of the most challenging and rewarding unpaid positions in existence. These days, I get to see my mom a couple times each year, which is not as often as we’d like. Mom lives in a suburb of Cleveland near where we grew up. We go visit her once a year, and she comes to see us in Wichita once a year. Even now that she’s retired, she’s still taking care of people. She does in-home care for a woman who’s over 90, and she goes to work every day to care for her. She’s always taught me to follow my heart where it takes me. She doesn’t need to say it — she lives it.

Dave with his mother Sharon

My mom is an extremely caring, compassionate, and consistent person. I never had to worry whether or not I was going to be her priority. Her No. 1 goal was always to have a happy and healthy family. I saw early on that, because my dad traveled a lot for work, my mom was the one who kept our home together.


Get More out of Game Night

In this digital age, having a family board-game night every few weeks is a novelty. Putting away the electronics and having fun face-to-face with your kids is reason enough to make this a family tradition. But did you know that board games can also teach your kids valuable life skills? Here’s the best way to facilitate this learning as a parent. FIND THE RIGHT GAME FOR THE RIGHT AGE It’s important to find games that fit your children’s abilities. Complex rules, small pieces, or mature content can make some games inappropriate for young kids. The first thing you should do is check the recommended age range on the packaging. This will help you find the best match for your kids. CONSULT THE RULES Whether you’re new to a game or an old pro, it’s worth spending some time going over how the game is played. Not only will this help you teach your kids how to play a new game, but these rules also provide valuable insight into the skills the game teaches. Even games

of pure chance, like Chutes and Ladders, can teach young kids motor skills, a sense of fair play, and what good sportsmanship looks like for both winning and losing. Does the game have rules for trading among players, like Monopoly or Settlers of Catan? These sorts of games are a great way to teach social skills. Does it offer multiple paths to victory, like Chess or Tokido? These games teach strategy and critical reasoning. Games like Pandemic require players to work together, teaching valuable teamwork and leadership skills. TEACH BY EXAMPLE While gameplay itself can be a great teacher, being a role model for your children during game night is the most important thing you can bring to the table. No matter their age, showing your kids how to lose gracefully, win magnanimously, and have fun no matter what are skills they will carry with them the rest of their lives.

Behind the Scenes of Marketing Magic

Get to Know Stacie

As our chief marketing officer at In the Bag

It all struck a chord with me, and I felt like this would be a great company to be a part of. I am really excited to be somewhere that finally feels like home.”

Cleaners, Stacie helps get the word out about what we’re doing, both in our stores and in the community. Our company’s dedication to giving back is what attracted Stacie to work for us in the first place. Before joining our team, Stacie was building on her 10 years of marketing experience at another

It was a case of being in the right place at the right time.

Since joining us, Stacie’s marketing skills — from graphic design to public relations and advertising — have been invaluable to our team. And getting to work for Dave? “Bosses are just not like this anymore. I’ve never had a boss who is so enthusiastic about marketing. He has so many great, new ideas — sometimes, I just try to keep up!” When Stacie’s not exercising her marketing magic, she and her family go to Fall River to enjoy the outdoors at their cabin. “We love going out there. Our kids disconnect from their iPhones and we go boating, fishing, four-wheeling, and hunting. We love having our extended family out there, as well. We grill a ton of food and sit around the campfire enjoying s’mores and stories, games, talent shows, and dance-offs. It’s all about making memories out there.”

company. Then, as she describes, “I saw this opportunity and jumped on it.” Stacie had observed Dave’s focus on giving back to the community, and her family had experienced firsthand In The Bag’s professionalism and quality of services as our clients for years.

Stacie explains, “I heard Dave speak at a Chamber of Commerce event and saw how much he likes to give back to the community.

You’ll likely see Stacie at our stores and in the community. Say hello the next time you run into her!

2 • In The Bag Cleaners • • (316) 267-3407

Destination Fun

Grilled Skirt Steak With Asparagus

What are your summer plans? If you’re still scratching your head and drying sweaty palms in response to that question, trying to figure out how you’re going to keep the kids busy all season, don’t fret. There are plenty of options close at hand for kid-friendly entertainment, from your own backyard to downtown. Here are a few ideas to keep the summer fun and active for you and the kids. 3 Summer Activities for the Whole Family


Inspired by Food Network

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Salt and pepper to taste Grated pecorino Romano cheese

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1 1/2 pounds skirt steak 2 tablespoons canola oil


1 pound asparagus

If the kids are new to camping, ease them into the experience by heading to the wilderness — right in your backyard. Bring binoculars to locate the native wildlife, and gather flashlights for nighttime storytelling. Make it extra special by bringing graham crackers, marshmallows, and chocolate for s’mores. Have a fire pit? Use it to make a “campfire.” If you don’t have one, use your grill or even the oven to toast the marshmallows, and enjoy the delicious treats around the tent.

2 teaspoons crushed red pepper


1. Heat grill to high. Season room-temperature steak with salt, pepper, and 1 tablespoon oil. Any oil with a high smoke point, such as canola, will work. 2. Trim bottom inch of asparagus. Season with salt, pepper, and remainder of oil. 3. Cut steak into four portions and grill for 3–5 minutes per side, depending on desired doneness. Skirt steak is thin and will cook quickly. 4. Let steak rest for 10 minutes. While it’s resting, grill asparagus for 6 minutes, turning once. 5. Sprinkle cheese and crushed red pepper on asparagus. Serve alongside steak.


This is an activity that can be as elaborate or as simple as you want to make it. Start with a location in mind, and create clues that will lead the participants to the next spot. If the kids have friends over, they can form teams and split up to add some competition to the hunt. The last clue might take them to an ice cream shop or another special location where they can claim their prize.


Pick a day to enjoy some of the local Wichita treasures you’ve never seen before. These might include historic sites around town, new restaurants, or entertainment venues you’ve yet to try. You might choose to visit the Museum of World Treasures, which houses one of the largest Tyrannosaurus rex skeletons in the world. The first Thursday of each month is Family Night, which means special discounts and exhibits are included. You might go see a movie at Warren Theater in Old Town, where every Wednesday features $5 movies. Oh, and on Sundays, visit The Lux for fresh-made waffles with ice cream and toppings all made by Little Lion Ice Cream. Yum!

Have a




1951 N. Ohio Ave., Wichita, KS 67214 (316) 267-3407 |


Happy Mother’s Day!

What Board Games Can Teach Your Kids Get to Know Stacie

3 Family-Friendly Summer Activities Grilled Skirt Steak With Asparagus

3 of the Most Formidable Moms in History

Mothers Shape the World of History’s Bravest Moms

IRENA SENDLER (1910–2008) When the Nazis invaded Warsaw in September of 1939, Irena Sendler, a 29-year-old social worker and mother of two, hatched a scheme to rescue Jewish children from the brutal ghettos. Along with many friends and colleagues, she smuggled out nearly 2,500 Jewish orphans, hiding infants on trams and garbage wagons and guiding kids through a labyrinth of secret passageways beneath the city. EMMELINE PANKHURST (1858–1928) Despite being a wife and the mother of five children — two of whom died tragically young — Emmeline Pankhurst became one of the fiercest advocates for women’s suffrage in the late 19th century. After founding the Women’s Social and Political Union in 1903, she and her cohorts adopted an aggressive strategy to raise awareness for the issue; they began by buttonholing politicians and staging rallies, then progressed to vandalism, window smashing, and arson. She was instrumental in the movement. Pankhurst lived to see women gain the right to vote in 1928.

Moms make the world go round. After running the gauntlet of childbirth, they raise and guide us throughout our lives, shouldering the tremendous burden and responsibility of motherhood. Mothers are in turn formidable, kind, powerful, gentle, wise, fierce, patient, supportive, empathetic, driven, and full of love. In honor of Mother’s Day, here are three historic moms who never stopped fighting for what they believed in. SOJOURNER TRUTH (1797–1883) Before she escaped from New York slaveholder John Dumont, Sojourner Truth had at least three of her children sold away from her. When Dumont went back on his promise to emancipate Truth and her infant daughter in 1826, she took the girl and fled to an abolitionist Quaker family, but she was forced to leave her other daughter and her 5-year-old son, Peter, behind. Soon after, she learned that Peter had been illegally sold by Dumont to a slaveholder in Alabama, so she went to court and secured his safe return. It was the first successful case brought by a black woman against a white man in American history. Truth went on to become a prominent abolitionist and a speaker for women’s rights, delivering her famous impromptu speech, “Ain’t I a Woman?” in May of 1851.

4 • In The Bag Cleaners • • (316) 267-3407

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