A Beachy 3rd Birthday Party

So we were supposed to have my daughter’s 3rd birthday at the beach but because of horrible traffic delays and a mudslide detour we decided to bring the beach to us and celebrate her birthday at home.

Mindful Moment or a Deep Breath of Love

Whether you call it a mindful moment or a deep breath of love, children who practice meditation are learning skills to better weather both small and great emotional upheavals. My son’s mantra and some book recommendations for families.

In the Garden: Budding Geologists

According to them, this is a gem that they have unearthed. So in addition to being amateur paleontologist and archeologists, they’ve decided to add geologists their their resumes. And why not! Is it imaginative play or science in action? Perhaps a little bit of both. If reading books about minerals, rocks and gems leads to digging in the garden. Or if digging in the garden leads to researching about rocks. Either way, its a great feedback loop to grow a passion for science and the natural world. Here are 8 great books for your budding geologist.

Practical Life: Helping with Dehydrating fruit

Things in the kitchen move more quickly, smoothly and efficiently when I do things myself. To be honest, most things go more quickly and smoothly when I do it myself because after so many years, I’ve got most things optimized. For restraining my obsessive need for order, for being patient and flexible I am rewarded with this smile of happiness and pride. And it makes me realize how important it is to allow children to participate in (practical) life not simply so they will learn necessary skills and feel a sense of accomplishment but because it reminds us as adults to pause our need for perfection, to enjoy the moment as it unfolds.

Another Reason to Love Legos

I built this little racer. Do you know who designed it?

Cutting Shop Aftermath

What happens when your 5 and 2 year old decide to start a “cutting shop”?

Immediate Floral Gratification

Want to give your child a discrete and doable task? Want to see your child beam with pride? Give her/him a bunch of cut flowers and a vase.

These Toddler Days

Looking for toddler activities? Here is a gallery of ideas which are sure to please the 2-4 year set.

Do you know who Yaddle is?

My kids love reading about the Star Wars universe, though they do not have any interest in seeing any of the films. Did you know that Yoda had a counterpart named Yaddle? Well, according to my daughter this is Yaddle’s house & garden. May the force be with you.

Homemade Children's Yurt

Have a sturdy tree and a few spare pieces of lumber? Even something simple as a tarp draped over a strong tree branch will make for happy playing. Remember it doesn’t need to be fancy, it just needs to exists. Your kids will supply their imaginations to make it a grand affair.

Kids & Toothbrushing

Even toothbrushes deserve a moment in the spotlight.

Jumanji Board Game

Every time my children read Jumanji by by Chris Van Allsburg they are inspired to create their own board games. This time I was inspired to translate the story’s board game into a printable. Just print the pdf onto legal size paper, arm yourself with a die and brave the perils of the jungle in order to reach the golden city.

Sewing School: Infinity Cowl

What do you get when you sew two long rectangular pieces of fabric back to back? A long tube. What do you get if you sew the long tube into a loop? A super adorable, reversible infinity cowl.

Recycled Magazine Tiara

Whether you have stacks of cooking or home décor magazines, clothing catalogs or gossip weeklies, recycling pages from those periodicals into something beautiful is not only eco-friendly but very craft-craving satisfying.

Target Finds

A Target store recently opened nearby us and I’ve rediscovered the store as a great place to discover cute and affordable home wares, clothing and toys. Here are some items I’ve curated from various departments online.