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    March 19, 2015
    Spring Solstice Fun

    Tomorrow, March 20th, is the Spring Solstice! It marks the first day of Spring (in the Northern hemisphere) and is a great excuse to get outside with your kids and learn about nature and even astronomy. Because, this year we will be having a solar eclipse AND a super new moon tomorrow. Pretty exciting stuff! The Spring solstice celebrates the vernal equinox (when the length of the day and the length of the night are equal), which also occurs tomorrow. Talk about a lot! Check out this post by Nell at Rhythms of Play for ideas for solstice activities:

    -Get outside and connect- take a hike, observe new life beginning around you- find flowers, birds, and other critters .

    -Plant new life- put a tree in your yard, or plant some flowers!

    -Decorate eggs- get them ready for Easter, or paint a wooden egg for a craft

    -Prepare a feast for family and friends.

    Photo Credit: martinak15 

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    February 16, 2015
    Happy President’s Day!

    Stay warm!

    Photo from 

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    January 19, 2015
    Celebrating MLK Day With Kids: Books and Activities About Diversity

    Happy Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, everyone! I know that many of you may be enjoying a day off from work or school, which is great, but today also allows time for reflection. Today, I went with my mother and my nephew to our city’s MLK Memorial Ceremony, and it really made me think. We heard about Martin Luther King’s life, lesser known civil rights heroes and heroines, as well as heard some excellent speeches from African American people in our community. As someone who is white, I never usually have to think about the challenges that people of color faced- and still face- in our country today. However, my nephew is biracial, and since he was born, I have gotten a small taste of it.

    If I learned nothing else today, it is this: be kind to one another, regardless of skin color. Reach out to people from outside of your usual circle (this is challenge to me, since I’m pretty shy!). And really, just be aware of what is happening around you. Stand up for injustice. Don’t be silent. Instilling values of empathy, equality, and diversity in our kids is absolutely crucial to stamping out prejudice and racism. And there are plenty of ways to do that! Read books! Interact with people from all walks of life- all races, religions, nationalities. And let your kids know that there is more than one way to be human. For some great books about Civil Rights, check out this post by Erica at What We Do All Day:

    Boycott Blues: How Rosa Parks Inspired a Nation.

    This Is the Dream

    Sit-In: How Four Friends Stood Up by Sitting Down.

    I Have a Dream.

    The Story Of Ruby Bridges

    Martin’s Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

    Photo Credit + Egg Activity from: Kids Activities Blog 

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    January 1, 2015
    Happy New Year!

    Try a countdown with a goodie bag every hour!

    Photo + Idea from Hoosier Homemade

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    December 25, 2014
    Merry Christmas!

    Photo from C.R.A.F.T.

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    December 22, 2014
    Toys For ALL Kids

    Pink is for girls. All other colors are for boys. Girls get dolls and princesses and makeup, boys get science, nature, cars, superheroes, building tools, sports, technology, action figures- basically anything on the planet that has NOT been deemed as feminine. Then, we wonder why more girls aren’t interested in science, and why boys who grow up to be fathers are so absent in their children’s lives. To me, this is absolutely ridiculous. The very fact that “boy” toys and “girl” toys exist and are separate things proves that we still live in a very sexist, gender divided society. Some boys will grow up to be fathers and chefs and designers- they should play with baby dolls and cooking sets as well. Some girls will grow up to be scientists and athletes and engineers- and they need to play with microscopes and tools and sports equipment. So, if you’re looking for awesome, empowering gifts for ALL CHILDREN this holiday season, check out this post by Dayna at Lemon Lime Adventures:

    -Trucks and cars- always help with problem solving abilities

    -Work bench and tools-Work benches are great for fine motor development, problem solving, creative thinking, language development, and even pre-writing skills.

    -Science kits


    -Baby dolls

    -Cooking sets / play kitchens

    -Dress up clothes- dramatic play develops social intelligence in kids of all genders. Princess or pirate, doctor or ninja, cowboy/girl, — let your kids pick out their own clothes and go crazy!

    -Art supplies, coloring books, and anything that encourages creativity

    Photo Credit: Weird Nut Daily 

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    December 19, 2014
    Friday Fun Video: Fun Gift Wrapping Inspiration

    I love this! I’m absolutely miserable at wrapping presents. Maybe this will help me look like I know what I’m doing!

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    December 16, 2014
    DIY Gift Idea From Kids- Sharpie Mugs

    When you have very young kids, getting gifts for them is easy. You can give them a bunch of crap from the dollar store and they’re happy. Heck, you can give them toilet paper rolls, trash, and socks to play with, and they will– happily. My nephew prefers napkins and cardboard over his expensive baby toys anyway. What’s difficult is getting them to give gifts to their parents. Sure, you could just buy your spouse a nice, store bought item, write “From Baby” on it, and be done with it– but I think that having the kids make something is much more meaningful, and the parents will love it. Check out this idea from Lynette at Cleverly Simple for an adorable “From Kid” gift– a DIY Sharpie mug:

    You need:

    Sharpies (Sharpie Oil Based Paint Pens )
    An Oven

    -Let the kids go wild!

    -Let them dry overnight.  The next day I placed them in a COLD oven and turned the heat on to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  I let it “cook” for 30 minutes and then turned the heat off.  IMPORTANT:::  Let the oven cool before you pull out the coffee mugs.

    Photo Credit: Emily May 

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    December 11, 2014
    Keeping The Holidays Stress Free

    I know that almost every post I’ve written this week has been holiday centered, but I just can’t help it! Like I said, I caught the Christmas bug. However, while the holidays are super fun, they can be some of the most stressful times of the year. Between shopping, watching kids, cleaning, cooking, decorating the inside and outside of the home, and following up with winter traditions– it can seriously pile up, and add to an even larger pile of stress. However, I think this post by Erika at Urth Mama has the secret to keeping the holidays simple. Her answer? Pick out your priorities, get them done, and forget the rest.

    I think the best thing about Christmas is finding traditions that work for your family and not worrying about what other people are doing.

    Traditions we love to make a priority over Christmas are:

    -Decorating a Christmas tree

    -Building a Gingerbread House

    -Learning about Jesus’ birth, Christmas traditions, Hannukah, Kwanzaa, and other traditions around the world.

    -Going to the Nutcracker Ballet

    -Making (or buying) a few meaningful gifts for each family member.

    So there you have it! Get together as a family, make your own list of traditions that are important to you, and stop trying to stretch yourself so thin! 

    Photo Credit: JN 

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    December 9, 2014
    Holiday Themed Sensory Activities

    It’s official- I have caught the Christmas bug. I’ve been blasting Christmas music, we’ve already put up our tree (this is early for us!), and I’ve bought, made, and wrapped all my gifts. Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Winter Solstice, or another winter holiday- this season is extremely exciting! It’s a time of celebration, family, faith, friendship, and fun. That’s why I don’t think it’s wrong to wedge some holiday cheer into every aspect of life, and why I love this post by Kim at Blessed Beyond A Doubt. She has listed several Christmas themed sensory activities for kids (that could be easily adapted for another holiday, or just for winter fun in general). I also love sensory activities because they let young kids explore the world with their own hands. Check out some of her ideas:

    -Gingerbread play dough.

    -Christmas sparkle slime (I love this! It looks like a Christmas tree exploded, haha. Pictured.)

    -Magnet Science Sensory Bin.

    -Peppermint scented Christmas sensory bin.

    Photo Credit: Little Bins For Little Hands 

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