Muppets Most Wanted in Theaters this Weekend

 Hi Everyone…looking for great family fun this weekend?

How about Muppets Most Wanted

muppets most wanted 526ecae2bfbad

 

Take you kids to see the new Muppet Movie at a theatre near you. See all your old friends and make new ones!

Below please find a link to new activity sheets including how to make a paper bag puppet, a pin the mole on Kermit game, sending a postcard from Miss Piggy and a fun Can You Spot the Differences game all on behalf of Disney’s MUPPETS MOST WANTED, which is currently playing in theatres everywhere!

familly-press-kit

Autism Awareness Day

Autism Awareness and Children

 

autism awareness

 

I met Julie Cole at a blog meeting a few years ago…she was outgoing and welcoming. Since I felt like a “fish out of water” as I was new to blogging and was about 20 years older than the average blogger at the meeting, her smile and friendly hello put me at ease.

I learned about her company Mabel’s Labels and it changed my life as far as labeling goes…you see, I am grandmother and I do a fair amount of the labeling of clothes.

In addition, my granddaughter has food allergies so lunch labels were a great idea even though her school is nut free.

Shoes and especially boots were particularly problematic as many children had the same ones. Mabel’s Labels eliminated all of our lost clothes worries. If they were misplaced the Mabel’s Labels has made it easy to find in the Lost and Found!

Over the past three years, I have followed Julie Cole on Facebook and have become a Mabel’s Labels Affiliate.

Today is Autism Awareness Day, and Julie is writing about it on her blog. She is personally familiar with this syndrome as her son has been diagnosed with it.

Here is an excerpt from her blog:

From the heart, Julie shares some really great information about support for parents with an autistic child

 

“It has been 10 years since my son was diagnosed with

autism at the age of three.

Back in those days, you got your diagnosis and you were sent on your way to deal with it. Very little information regarding treatment, agencies, education or help of any kind was provided. It was pretty much a “Yes, your son has autism… don’t hit yourself with the door on the way out” kind of an approach.”

via The Mabelhood.

 

I hope you enjoy Julie as much as I do.

 

 

 

Captain America:The Winter Soldier is coming soon!

CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER

opening in theaters this Friday!

captain america picture

 

Are you a fan of Captain America?

Friday April 4, marks the opening day in theaters around the country!

I am sure it will be great entertainment for you and your family.

As usual, I am able to share some links with you for some fun activities.

The kids will surely enjoy them before or after watching the movie.

I hope you enjoy these Captain America downloads from Disney.

captainamerica2_pdf_5335f0fed6667 Activity Pak 1

Have a great weekend.

See you at the movies.

References: Captain Marvel:The Winter Soldier

The Muppets are Back!

 

Muppet Love

If you know me then you are aware of my love of the Muppet characters

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DQiGyBiNjLI

My love affair with the Muppets began in the 80′s when my children were very young. At the time we were living on the Treasure Coast of Florida without cable television. It was a lucky morning on the weekends when our antenna would capture Public Televison signal from Miami.

The new Muppets Most Wanted promises to entertain adults and children alike with all the “old characters” making an appearance.

Who is your favorite muppet?

muppetsmostwanted526ecae2bfbad -The Muppets

Mine is Kermit!

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“Simply Saline”….Rescue from a Cold

 In winter, a cold is my number one enemy!

Suffering through the stuffiness and the sneezing seems like part of the season but I have learned it does not have to be that way, since discovering

“Simply Saline” from Arm and Hammer.

Simply Salline for Cold ReliefLast  summer, when cold season was the least of my worries, I was at BlogHer13 here in Chicago. It was my pleasure to meet many of its sponsors especially the group from Arm and Hammer which has always been a favorite of this mom and now grand mom.

I did not know that they had a line of products known as “Simply Saline”. One of the representatives kindly sent me some samples to try …little did I realize then, this product would come to my rescue several times over the  longest and most frigid winter.

First off, my little granddaughter had early winter sniffles and we tried the children’s formula…it relieved her congestion and was so easy to use.

Next…I caught her cold…I knew how well Simply Saline Children’s had worked so I grabbed my grown-up Simply Saline Nasal Relief. It helped my congestion immediately.

As a mom, grandmother  and former mother/child nurse I am concerned about products that I use for

cold relief.

When it comes to children especially, a parent needs to select carefully any over the counter product.

For me, the more natural the product the better…what could be more natural than saline nasal spray when it comes to relieving congestion and stuffiness symptoms?

This past week, I have had my third cold of the season! UGH!

Simply Saline again came to my rescue…between the dry air in our house and the frigid temperatures outside it was a miserable bout with nasal congestion, relieved in part by this wonderful natural Arm and Hammer product.

Arm and Hammer products have been in my home for as long as I can remember and for me that is quite a number of years.

It is a product label, my grandmother and mother trusted…and now I am passing that on to my family…five generations later.

Thank you, Simply Saline, for helping me through this cold and flu season.

Disclosure:

This post is sponsored: I was given product to review, all opinions are my own.

What are “STEM” Toys?

Do you know what “STEM” toys are?

 

 

Toys

Toy Fair 2014 NYC sounded like the place to be for anyone who loves toys, buys toys or sells toys.

As a grandmother, I am particularly interested in toy quality and what is educational as well as age appropriate.

I am not particularly bothered by toys that target gender because I buy and encourage my grandchild to play with items whether they are considered “boy” or “girl” toys.

The princess rage does not bother me either…I try to watch the princess stories so I can explain the positive qualities that each character possesses along with the issues that the villain presents to my grandchild.

This all being said…I came across some interesting posts that were driven by visits to the Toy Fair 2014.

toysI was not familiar with the acronym STEM- which refers to science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Apparently this word describes characteristics, which parents like when shopping for play items.

Samantha Murphy Kelly, describes several toys which teach children architecture, programming and construction…including creating your own robot.

Quite a change from Barbie, as she says!

Another favorite mom blogger of mine Liz Gumbinner from Mom 101 and Cool Mom Picks devoted a piece to toys that she felt were not so gender specific.  Why are we so committed to pink for girls and primary colors for boys or fireman outfits for boys and princess gear for girls?

My wish is that toy manufacturers would catch up to parents, and grandparents, who are looking for toys that do not single out gender but instead help to create a world wide open to boys and girls in their world of play.

 

Related:

7 STEM Toys That Put Barbie to Shame

 

Smart Toys for Girls-No Princesses Pink Aisle by Samantha Kelly Murphy

A Very Happy Valentines Day 2014!

Happy Valentines Day!

valentines dayA Valentine mosaic is so appropriate today…

I am remembering all the Valentines in my life…those who are far and those who are near…those who who are no longer here.

We are all tied by an Invisible String of Love that “Loops” us together forever.

Valentine’s Day 2014 is dedicated to my beloved sister-in-law who died recently.

She helped loop our family together with

LOVE…

Listening to your Children

listening“Are you listening to me”?

Since I returned to Chicago two weeks ago it has been frigid, with a mixture of snow and ice…

I cannot remember when the cold has been this bad for so long…it seems like many years since I made sure I had a blanket and supplies in my car just in case it was needed!

At least, I no longer have a diesel engine car which would freeze and just refuse to go anywhere in the cold.

During the past few weeks, I have taken a hiatus. With all the cold I was beginning to think my brain has frozen along with my keyboard…

A few days ago, I came across an important piece about active listening

There just doesn’t seem to be anything more important than actually listening to our children and grandchildren to help them develop empathy, feel validated and remain willing to talk to us.

As a social worker and nurse, listening skills were paramount while caring for others… listening both with my ears and my eyes. Body language can also tell you how a person really feels and whether their words are contradicted by their bodies.

When I was growing up in the 50′s…there was a mantra…”children should be seen and not heard”.

I was never quite sure what was actually meant by this statement. What I do know, is that as the youngest member of my family, I always made myself known.

Over the years, it seems this saying has disappeared and to that I would say, “good riddance”!

Children speak to us in so many ways…through solo play with their toys, through our interactions with them, through body language and through behavior such as crying and tantrums.

Listening to your child with your undivided attention can derail a tantrum…really!

Making sure you understand what he is trying to tell you with his actions and his words is a very powerful tool…it actually shows your child that you care about how he is feeling.

I know, I feel so appreciative of someone, who really listens to me and is not trying to formulate a response while I am talking.

Children appreciate real listening as well and will continue to seek you out as they get older if you are a good listener when they are young.

So…try active listening…it is not easy. Beforehand, you may have to step back and center yourself rather than scream out loud as you step forward with open ears, eyes and arms.

listening with hugs

Related article:

Active listening improves communication in the parent child relationship.

 

Fostering Emotional Health In Our Children

Children and Emotional Health…how to foster emotional health in our children is, to me, one of the most misunderstood areas of child development.

children

I am the first to say, I wish I knew or I wish we knew more about child development while raising our own daughters.

While we are raising our children it is sometimes difficult to put aside the “ways” of  own parents. They sneak into our relationships with our kids, especially when the going gets rough and we are tired.

Crying craziness…

When children are crying and their emotions are running high it has a tendency to push our buttons… at that moment it is so hard to step back and gain control of ourselves much less our little one.

children

But that is just what is needed in order to recognize our children‘s emotions as valid and acceptable. Now, I am not talking about “no discipline”.

It is really all about discipline.

Parental or adult discipline of children should be designed to help children engage better with others and to modify or control their behavior. Providing appropriate discipline to children is one of the most essential responsibilities of a parent. And providing consistent and positive discipline helps children grow into responsible adults.

According to the Committee for Children (2004), the purpose of discipline is “to encourage moral, physical, and intellectual development and a sense of responsibility in children.

Ultimately, older children will do the right thing, not because they fear external reprisal, but because they have internalized a standard initially presented by parents and other caretakers. In learning to rely on their own resources rather than their parents, children gain self-confidence and a positive self-image.”

via Child Discipline.

Discipline is really about “teaching” and modeling behavior…in order to teach as a parent you have to be in control of yourself and your own emotions…this is not easy when our child is having “a moment”.

Allowing your child to express his feelings and accepting his feelings is a time for us as parents and grandparents to teach them that their feelings are real and acceptable unless they are behaving destructively or in an unsafe way.

Tantrums can be unsafe…first control the environment and then deal with the tantrum itself. It is sort of like a panic attack…until the panic subsides there can be no teaching.

In the beginning, fostering healthy emotional development for our children means listening and trying to decipher our babies’ cries rather than immediately suppressing or ignoring them.  It means that throughout childhood, anger, grief and sadness are acceptable feelings for our children to express anytime anywhere (although never in a destructive or unsafe manner).  Granting our children this freedom to be their whole selves — unconditional acceptance — will lead to far fewer enraged or depressed adults in the future.

via No Angry Kids – Fostering Emotional Literacy In Our Children | Janet Lansbury.

 

Fostering emotional health in your child and unconditionally accepting a child’s emotions within a healthy framework is essential to growth and development.

In order to accomplish this, a parent or caregiver has to first, recognize their own emotions and be able to model acceptable behavior for their children.

child

Throw Back Thursday…Memories

 

 

 

Memories from my childhood…what about you?Barbie just a Memory

 

 

Do you know the name of this doll?

What dolls do you remember?

 

Fond Memories:Barbie circa 1950'sI love throw back Thursdays…for me it is fun to see how far or not so far people go back…

My memories are from a different time when there was no internet in fact there was barely television!