Friday, May 27, 2011

Sharing is caring

We teach our children everyday to share.  "Don't forget to share those cookies with your sister." or, "Don't forget to share your toys with your Daddy."

Sharing shows you care.  Sharing is spreading joy and happiness to those around you.

Today, I want to share a few of my favorite blogs with you.  If teach our kids to do it, I'm going to do it too!

  1. Stories a la Mode:  A blog by Barbara Bockman.  Visit Barb's fun and educational blog that features Monday Metaphors, interviews with authors of kids books, book reviews and much more.
  2. J. Aday Kennedy: A Writing Playground:    Interviews, ideas to market your books, reviews and writing tips. J. Aday writes for children and adults and is a motivational speaker.. Two of her picture books have been published by Guardian Angel Publishing and seven more are under contract.
  3. Everything Matters in Life: A blog by Priya Iyengar.  Priya's blog is about day and night; people and animals; places and cultures; good and bad; pleasure and pain; kids and adults; rich and poor; religion and politics; science and arts; And everything else that matters to her in life. 
I want to share your blog too.  Leave me a comment and I will share your blog next time.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Just Ask Justin: Penguins, Yoshies and Snakes!

We're back for another installment of Just ask Justin!

We would both like to thank everyone who suggested topics for Justin to discuss.  Justin loves talking about anything, believe me, he not only talks a lot, but he actually knows plenty of interesting facts he has learned from school, books and from HGTV.  Yes, my son loves HGTV! :)

Today's topic is...drum roll please...Justin's favorite animal.

P.  Thank you for participating again, Justin.
J. You are welcome.  I LOVE doing Just ask Justin.

P.  Can you tell me what is your favorite animal? 
J.  I have 3 favorite animals: Penguins, Yoshies and Snakes.

P.  Wow, that's quite a list.  What are Yoshies?
J.   Yoshies are a Mario Character.  They are a type of dinosaur.  They are normally green, but they can be almost any color.

P.  What do you like most about Yoshies?
J.  Yoshies are so cute and cuddly.  In some games, Yoshies can fly.

P.  If you could have one for a pet, what would you name it and where would you keep it?
J.  I would name it Yoshi, because that's what his name is.  I would keep it in our house with someone who could take care of it at all times. 

P.  Yoshies sound very cute.  What kind of food do they eat?
J.  They are so cute.  They eat Yoshie fruit.  It grows on Yoshie fruit bushes.

P.  Which type of penguin is your favorite?
J.  The Adelie Penguin is my favorite.

P.  What do you like most about the Adelie Penguin?
J.  They are so cute.  The chicks are soft are warm.

P.  Do Penguins fly like Yoshies?
J.  Penguins are flightless birds, but they have wings so they can swim in water.

P.  What other facts do you know about Adelie penguins?
J.  The Adelie penguin chick is as tall as its parents, so the Adelie penguin chick can't sit on their feet.  They live in rocky areas so their chick can stay warm.

P. What type of penguin chick sits on its parent's feet?
J.  The Emperor Penguin chick sits on its Dad's feet first while the Mom is getting food.   Then they sit on the Mom's feet while the Dad is getting food.  By the time the Dad gets back, the chick is old enough to stay warm on its own.
P.  Would you be able to keep a penguin as a pet?
J.  No, because it is too warm in New Hampshire.  They normally live in Antarctica.  The  only way I could keep one in my house is if I had a huge freezer habitat and lots of fish and krill.

P.  Why do you like snakes?  They are not cute, soft and cuddly.
J.  They are cool because they can eat something bigger than themselves.

P.  Do you have a favorite type of snake?
J.   I like all kinds of snakes.  My favorite type of snake is the Twig Snake.

P.  What does a Twig snake look like?
J.  It looks like a twig, that's how it got it's name.

P.  I hope you wouldn't want to keep one as a pet.  Are they poisonous? 
J.  Yes, very poisonous.  There is no anti-venom if you get bitten by one.  You would probably die.  Garden snakes are different, they are not poisonous.  They eat mice and protect your garden. 

P.  Why do you like the Twig snake?
J.  I like them because they are very good at blending in so it makes it hard to find them.

P.  Thank you for talking about your favorite animals today.  What kind of things would you like to talk about next time?
J.  I think someone asked me to talk about my favorite outdoor games.  If you have other ideas, please let me know.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Did you see the Google Doodle today?

Check out the new Doodle for Google winner for 2011:

How old do you think Matteo (the winner of the competition) is?  As I was admiring his doodle, I imagined he was in high school, ready to go on to a graphic design or art school.  Keep reading to find out how old he really is.
Every Doodle 4 Google has a theme.  This year kids had to come up with a doodle answering this questions:

  • …Become a doctor with my own TV show.
  • …Invent rocket shoes that let you fly.
  • …Open a zoo for the world’s endangered animals.
"Welcome to Doodle 4 Google, a competition where we invite K-12 students to use their artistic talents to think big and redesign Google’s homepage logo for millions to see. At Google, we believe that dreaming about future possibilities leads to tomorrow’s leaders and inventors, so this year we invited U.S. kids to exercise their creative imaginations around the theme, "What I’d like to do someday…"
Whether students wanted to find a cure for cancer or take a trip to the moon, it all started with art supplies and some 8.5" x 11" paper. One lucky student artist, Matteo Lopez, has taken home a $15,000 college scholarship and $25,000 technology grant for his school. In addition, his artwork will appear on the homepage for millions to see."

The lucky and talented winner, Matteo, is only 7 years old! 
Matteo's theme was Space Life.  
What I'd like to do someday "is become an astronaut and explore space life. I want to wear a space suit, fly in space, walk on the moon and make friends with aliens in other planets."
It's amazing what kids can do.  He competed against kids that were 18 years old, and his doodle won.  How excited he must be.   How excited his parents must be!
Way to go Matteo!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

How much is too much?

Television sucks kids into a zombi-like vortex.  Kids stare for hours at the screen as characters, commercials and dramatic scenes flash by. 

Nintendo Ds, and other handheld gaming systems, suck kids into a addicting whirlwind of play.  They can't stop mashing buttons and clicking with the stylus because there are always new levels to unlock, monsters to defeat or just endless fun. 

The computer used to be avoided by many at all costs.  Now kids can't live without one.  They have their own email accounts, Skype accounts, game logins, and even Social Media accounts.  Computers encourage communication without Face to Face contact. 

Is all this technology making our kids brain dead?  Or, do kids actually learn things while watching TV or playing games?  Of course, if kids were only allowed to watch the discovery channel, they would learn many things.  But, can Cartoon Network be educational?

What do you think?  How much screen time do your children get? 

Many people tell parents that their kids watch too much TV.  How much screen time is too much?  Where is the "too much" limit for your children?

Friday, May 13, 2011

13 quotes for Friday the 13th

Happy Friday the 13th!  Here are a few of my favorite quotes about parenting.  Enjoy!

Stay tuned for another installment of Just Ask Justin....coming soon!
  1. All children behave as well as they are treated. Jan Hunt
  2. Parents need to fill a child's bucket of self-esteem so high that the rest of the world can't poke enough holes to drain it dry. Alvin Price 
  3. While we try to teach our children all about life, Our children teach us what life is all about. Angela Schwindt 
  4. No matter how calmly you try to referee, parenting will eventually produce bizarre behavior, and I'm not talking about the kids.  Bill Cosby
  5. One thing they never tell you about child raising is that for the rest of your life, at the drop of a hat, you are expected to know your child's name and how old he or she is. Erma Bombeck
  6. Sing out loud in the car even, or especially, if it embarrasses your children.  Marilyn Penland.
  7. None are so old as those who have outlived enthusiasm.  Henry David Thoreau
  8. A person soon learns how little he knows when a child begins to ask questions.  Richard L. Evans
  9. Always kiss your children goodnight - even if they're already asleep.  H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
  10. God sends children to enlarge our hearts, and make us unselfish and full of kindly sympathies and affections.  Mary Howitt
  11. Love is giving someone your undivided attention.  Author Unknown
  12. Love is the chain whereby to bind a child to its parents.  Abraham Lincoln

And my favorite:
Children Learn What They Live - Dorothy Law Neite

If a child lives with criticism, he learns to condemn. 
If a child lives with hostility, he learns to fight.
If a child lives with ridicule, he learns to be shy.
If a child learns to feel shame, he learns to feel guilty.
If a child lives with tolerance, he learns to be patient.
If a child lives with encouragement he learns confidence
If a child lives with praise, he learns to appreciate.
He a child lives with fairness, he learns justice.
If a child lives with security, he learns to have faith.
If a child lives with approval, he learns to like himself.
If a child lives with acceptance and friendship, he learns to find love in the world.

Which one is your favorite?
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