Making Paper Doll Friends

Making Friends is a website that offers free paper dolls that you can print out and your preschooler can play with. There are tons of different clothing and hair options for these dolls, with new varieties added from time to time. These paper dolls are also great for story telling, and imaginative play. To start, go to and look for the links to the paper doll bodies. You can print two dolls out on just one piece of paper. Each doll is wearing underwear, has outstretched arms, and a round, bald head. The dolls are gender neutral, waiting to … Continue reading

Genealogy for Kids

I want my children to share my passion for genealogy, and I try to share my research with them whenever I think I may have grabbed their attention. My three-year-old son accompanies me on most of my cemetery visits, and actually gets excited when I ask him if he wants to go for a walk in the cemetery. My nine-year-old daughter enjoys looking through my old family photos with me. I am always looking for ways to involve my children in my genealogy, and often come up short when looking for ideas online. However, I have managed to come across … Continue reading

Happy Mother’s Day, Single Moms!

Celebrating Mother’s Day can be a bit more of a challenge for single mother’s. We do not have a significant other there to plan the day for us, and are often left to do the planning ourselves. You might even feel like planning the day yourself is a bit arrogant, but you should not feel this way at all. I’ll tell you why. Number one, you deserve to celebrate yourself as a mother. You do a job a lot of people would not want to do, or could not do. Number two, your children deserve a day to thank you … Continue reading

Children’s Books on Diversity and Feelings

My last blog and the one before that highlighted books showing diverse families such as adoptive, interracial, stepparent, single parent, multigenerational. This blog will spotlight books that: * look at diversity of abilities and disabilities as well as looks *help kids deal with diverse feelings I’ve recommended before—but can’t recommend highly enough—the Sesame Street book We’re Different, We’re the Same. Using Sesame’s Street’s trademark mixture of all kinds of people, animals, and friendly monsters, as well as kids’ favorite character Elmo as cameraman (camera-monster?), the book shows pictures of all different types of noses, eyes, skin color, body size and … Continue reading

Book Review: Families Are Different

My last blog reviewed two books on families which showcase the diversity of families in gorgeous photographs of families, both doing everyday things and celebrating special events. Families Are Different was written and illustrated by Nina Pelligrini, a mother of two adopted daughters who said this book was inspired by feelings expressed by one of her daughters. The book’s characters are two daughters from Korea and their two white parents. With its simply-drawn illustrations and its matter-of-fact narration by one of children, the book is well-suited to younger children but makes a point that will be appreciated by older children … Continue reading

Book Reviews: Books on Families

Two general books about families include adoptive, multi-racial and special-needs families that will be of interest to adoptive families. The photos in both will appeal to young children and the text will spark discussion for older children and their parents. Photographer Ann Morris ‘ trademark style is books with one theme, such as “Work”, “Hats”, “Carrying Babies”, and show pictures of people all around the world doing these things. The text is kept simple and the photos speak for themselves, although an index in the back provides a caption for each picture explaining what country it was taken in and … Continue reading

Entertaining Toddlers

Toddlers have a very short attention span. In order to keep them entertained, there are many tricks that parents have learned to make their lives easier. This includes what to have in the car to entertain children during heavy traffic and what to have to lessen their anxiety in the waiting room. Let’s look at some ideas for entertaining toddlers. Busy Bag for Cars A busy bag for toddlers will come in handy when you get stuck in traffic or have to wait in the dentist or doctor’s office. Filled with special goodies that your child doesn’t get to play … Continue reading

The Busy Life of the Preschooler

Preschoolers are wonderful…think about it. They still think parents knows everything and they think we are perfect (though Grandpa is better). They still like to give kisses and the sweetest hugs for no reason (well, sometimes they do it for the cookie), and best of all they still want to cuddle. This morning, my Deanna, woke in the most loving mood; as she stumbled in the kitchen with her Dora the Explorer jammies turned sideways from the long night of sleep. She was funny to watch as she had tusseled hair–we call “bed head”–and three stuffed bunnies. She gave me … Continue reading

Shopping Website Review: Mandy’s Moon

Mandy’s Moon was started by a mom who adopted a two-year-old and a ten-year-old from Vietnam. She began the site the year after her first daughter arrived, when she realized how hard it was to find objects picturing Asian children. She has expanded to carry merchandise featuring all races, and offers a special personalization service in which not only names, but nicely-drawn cartoon faces of different races, can be put together on products. The “My Family” service gives you ability to select images that resemble your family to be printed on your T-shirt, apron, mug, etc. The images can be … Continue reading

When a Child Makes a Racist Taunt To Another Child

No matter how much we read about adoption, there is a tremendous tendency to believe that your own kids are not getting questions or comments about race or adoption. The last few blogs have talked about helping to avoid stereotypes in children by having diverse books, dolls, and posters in their environment, and by specific actions and discussions to help kids develop empathy and learn about the contributions people of various races have made and are making to our society. Now I will mention some suggestions for a time when a child actually says or hears a racist comment or … Continue reading