Special Needs Blog Week in Review – Week of July 8 -14, 2012

Every week, the Special Needs Blog Week in Review brings you a brief summary of each of the blogs that have appeared here in the past seven days. This is a quick and easy way to find out about the blogs that you might have missed when they were first posted. The Special Needs Podcast Roundup went up on July 9, 2012. This week, I’d like to point out an episode of The Coffee Klatch. The episode is called “DSM, Examining a Flawed System That Traps Our Children”. If I understand correctly, this is an episode of the “Bright Not … Continue reading

Ponyo Makes a Splash on DVD

This week a DVD came out that I’ve been waiting on for years. It’s the latest from animation master Hayao Miyazaki and his company Studio Ghibli: “Ponyo,” with American distribution by Disney. “Ponyo” is Miyazaki’s take on the fairytale of “The Little Mermaid.” But it’s better that you put any assumptions or knowledge that you have of the story aside in order to watch the film, which puts its own very unique, and at times bizarre, spin on the story. Ponyo is the eldest daughter of sea wizard Fujimoto and the ethereal spirit of the sea. While in her natural … Continue reading

Is It Time for Mickey Mouse To Get a Facelift?

Can an icon still be an icon if its image changes? That’s the question Disney officials are asking themselves as they begin to consider a reinvention of Mickey Mouse. That’s right; the trademark mouse in Disney’s house might be getting a makeover. Disney executives are concerned that the younger generation doesn’t care about Mickey. In 2009 only 20% of Mickey’s $5 billion merchandise sales came from the United States. Consequently, the folks at Disney fear that Mickey is nothing more than a corporate mascot to American children, and that’s the issue they want to address. Other than saying considerations are … Continue reading

Kids in the Kitchen: How to Make Cute Chocolate Christmas Mice

“‘Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse…” Mice and Christmas… it’s a combination most home cooks would rather not have to deal with. Unless, of course, you are making these adorable Chocolate Christmas Mice. This particular recipe is an ideal project for young children since it doesn’t include hot ovens, sharp utensils or boiling liquids. Rather, you will be using store-bought items and letting your kids use their imaginations to create cute little edible mice. Once you’re done making your tiny treats store them in an airtight container. … Continue reading

International Hotels that Treat Your Kids Like Royalty

And you thought getting a free pair of mouse ears and some chocolates on your pillow was exciting. Wait until you see the types of goodies some luxurious family friendly resorts around the world are doling out to young guests to impress the entire clan. If you have always treated your child like a prince or princess then you’ll want to check out these ultra-luxe properties that go the extra mile to give kids the royal treatment: FRANCE The Hôtel Plaza Athénée on chic Avenue Montaigne in the heart of Paris has the market covered when it comes to upscale … Continue reading

Make Your Own Mouse Ears?

Seriously? It’s an inescapable part of modern life that we recycle that which is old and classic and turn it into something new and modern. Disney is not the first company and certainly not the last to recycle the past for a new generation. They did it with Herbie, with Flubber, Dr. Doolittle, and while they may not remake their Disney classics, that hasn’t stopped them from creating straight-to-DVD sequels that refresh the past by generating present day interest. So what are they up to now? A souvenir store in Mickey’s Toontown Disneyland in California is going to start selling … Continue reading

The Great Mouse Detective (1986)

“The Great Mouse Detective” is set in London in the late 1800s. Olivia Flaversham, a cute young Scottish mouse, and her father, the toymaker Hiram, fall victim to crime as Hiram is mousenapped right out of his own workshop. Olivia seeks the help of the most famous rodent detective in the country, Basil of Baker Street. At first, Basil isn’t interested in the case, but then he realizes that the abductor sounds very much like a mouse who works for his old enemy, Ratigan. He’s been trying to get Ratigan arrested for years, but to no avail. Maybe this time, … Continue reading

Make Believe Stories and Tall Tales

Do you make up stories, tell tall tales, or sing silly songs to your kids? If so, you may already know that inventing a character and crafting a story or song off the cuff can be a hilarious adventure for you and your family. One of your tales may turn into your child’s favorite bedtime or dinnertime story, as is the case in my home. I usually try to incorporate a few real life details or events to make a story more familiar and to help prevent certain memories from evaporating. In my willy-nilly rambling one day, while on vacation … Continue reading

Fun Items for Frugal Dress Up Play

There is a quick and easy way to entertain your preschooler for at least half an hour or so. Let him or her play dress up! Preschoolers tend to love this activity because it lets them “become” someone else for a while. Dress up is a great opportunity for using one’s imagination. Here are some frugal ideas for dress up play. Frugal Dress Up Ideas for Preschoolers Old Costumes Previously worn Halloween costumes are great for playing dress up in. Your child can become a princess, a superhero, or both in the same day. Reuse the Halloween costumes that your … Continue reading

Disney Considers Withdrawing from Hulu

A number of us here at families.com are big fans of ABC’s Disney-rific show “Once Upon A Time Some of us don’t have the time to watch the show when it airs, so we’re able to catch up with it online later. However, we might not have that option for much longer. One of the best ways to catch up with shows is through media website Hulu. Hulu streams dozens of shows from various channels: NBC, ABC, FOX, and many of their cable affiliates. In most cases shows are available the morning after they air (FOX makes free viewers wait … Continue reading