Spring Break Survival – Part One

This week is our spring break. The kids have been out of school since Friday afternoon. I’m enjoying the chance to sleep in. But the kids are already showing signs of restlessness. I’ve got a few ideas for keeping them busy this week so I thought I’d offer those ideas here for other parents in a Spring Break Survival Series. Lots of libraries offer special activities for spring break week. Our library has great stuff for every day of this week – children’s movies, storytellers, magic shows, and plays. Today we are going to a silly play based on Greek … Continue reading

Fun Ways to Keep Children Occupied Today

Occupying the kids the day before Thanksgiving is always a challenge. I let my boys take turns helping with the cooking which helps. And now they are old enough to mainly occupy themselves with games and computers when it’s not their turn to be in the kitchen. When they were younger though, keeping them happy and getting the cooking done was always a challenge. Particularly if I was also trying to keep the house clean for company. Going on neighborhood walks was always a great way to tire out the kids. And if there were visiting grandparents, sending them all … Continue reading

Vacationing Away From the Kids

I have a bit of a different entry for today’s blog. For the last few days I’ve been in Mexico with my husband celebrating our twentieth anniversary. One of our nieces and her friend flew out to watch the boys for us. Our boys don’t get to see their east coast relatives very often so I was nervous about the whole thing. I left some suggestions for fun things to do while we were gone. I brought out the Whoonu game so they could all get to know each other better. Our niece was so impressed with the game that … Continue reading

Fuse Bead Fun – Easy Crafts

I boxed up all our “melty beads” last week. That’s what we called the fuse beads made by Hama or Perler beads. We have done so many projects over the years with these beads. We’ve made refrigerator magnets, items for mobiles, package tags, Christmas ornmanets, and much more. If you’ve never used these beads, you should give them a try. They come in all sorts of colors, even clear, sparkly and glow-in-the-dark. You place the beads flat on a form. Some of the forms are shaped like baby chicks, children, dogs, dolphins, or rainbows. Other forms are just large circles … Continue reading

Summer Fun for Moms and Dads

My summer already seems to be evaporating. This week I had three phone calls and two meetings regarding the next school year. I’m not ready for fall, or for school to start again. I want to have some summer fun. My calendar is already filling up and I feel like I haven’t gotten to really sit back and enjoy summer. I’ve done fun things with the kids, but not anything for me. I expressed this some mom friends and they felt the same way. We came up with some summer ideas for moms to have some fun before back to … Continue reading

Fun While Bored?

My oldest graduates from middle school tomorrow. I’m very proud of the progress he’s made and all the projects he’s done. Tonight the school had an awards ceremony. My husband stayed home with our nine year olds. We’d been warned that the ceremony was two hours long. We have had talent shows, recitals, and orientations in the last few weeks. We are all tired and we didn’t feel like everyone needed to come to the ceremony. Several children wiggled through the lengthy program. Some played on game boys, some colored and drew on the program, some giggled and clapped for … Continue reading

Favorite Toys

I’m feeling nostalgic today. My oldest recently moved downstairs to the guest room. In the process of moving his things, a lot of his old toys got boxed up. Some we saved and some got boxed to give away. He’s thirteen so he doesn’t need his talking Arthur, his stuffed Pooh Bears or many other toys. Boxing up the toys made me sad, and made me miss the little boy who carried that Pooh bear everywhere. A week later my sister-in-law forwarded an email to me called “If You Were a Little Girl in the 70’s”. It showed all kinds … Continue reading

Sing, Sing, Sing!

The three of us in my family are enthusiastic fans of musical films such as “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang”, “Mary Poppins” and “Singin’ in the Rain”. We adore the singing, dancing and acting – even thought it is at times a bit campy. There is something extremely special about the innocence, and the lack of irony, in that age of filmmaking. Something occurred to me recently, while watching Julie Andrews transition smoothly from speaking her lines to Jane and Michael to all of a sudden singing “A Spoonful of Sugar”: My daughter has never once mentioned the singing as something … Continue reading

From Crib to Bed – A Toddler’s Fun Move to a Big Kid Bed! (Part Two)

We are now one month away from my girl’s third birthday and the guest bedroom, her new domain, is still in disarray. We had told her that she would be elevated to the big girl bedroom-world in time for her special day but as it stands right now the validity of our promise is in serious doubt! Over the past couple weeks, we have managed to get in there and at least begin clearing it out. This room has, for the five years we have owned our home, been considered a guest bedroom but those guests have been, for the … Continue reading

Family Dance Party

My family loves music and loves to dance around the house. Just about every night you can see us (if you were peering into our windows, which would be kind of odd) prancing, dancing, skipping or strutting around our living room. We are usually listening to something my daughter loves best – right now that would involve, primarily, the soundtracks to Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Mary Poppins and the eight catchy, well-crafted tunes (along with the beautifully illustrated storyboards) on the Gustafer Yellowgold DVD. We don’t have any structure to these dance parties. We pop in one record (or … Continue reading