Tag: family activities

Add some spring to your spring with 4 cool new albums for kids you’ll want to add to your playlists

Put a little spring in your step with some great new tunes for the kids that will get your toes tapping too. With new albums from some of our long-time favorites, as well as some artists that our kids will recognize from TV, there’s a great variety of new music, as evidenced in the four new releases we’ve featured here. Trees, the delightful new collaborative release by Molly Ledford of Lunch Money and versatile kindie musician Billy Kelly, is the musical equivalent of a ramble through the woods where every path leads somewhere fun.  Starting with the title song, Trees,...

Read More

DreamWorks’ Home movie review: That time an alien and a girl took a worldwide roadtrip

Before slipping on my pair of 3-D glasses at a recent press screening of the new Home movie, I realized it had been a while since I’d seen an animated feature in a theater. I’m sure that will change drastically as my three-year-old son gets a bit older and can get through more than a 30-minute chunk of Cars from our sofa. So I had two questions in mind as Home‘s opening sequence began: Will I enjoy this PG-rated film as a grown up? And is this something my son would like? The short answer to both questions is yes, but with the caveat that...

Read More

17 super cool Easter egg decorating ideas that are all about the color.

Every year, my family looks for cool ways to decorate Easter eggs that doesn’t require crafting skills far beyond what I have myself — which is not much. That said, my kids adore the tradition and love experimenting with new ways to play around with decorating eggs. As for me, I like them to look pretty when we’re done. (I’ve never been one for all those stickers that come in the egg-dyeing kits.) So I’ve tracked down 17 really great tutorials that are all about color and pattern, but that the kids can still have fun with on Easter Sunday without getting too...

Read More

Life Empowered: How kids can help change the world one light bulb at a time.

Imagine if you didn’t have electricity at home and your kids had to go out and sit under a street lamp on a deserted street, alone each night, in order to finish their homework. That’s exactly what a lot of kids face in other parts of the world, though when we think of “energy poverty,” we don’t always think about such relatable examples of its effect. That’s why, as we turn our clocks forward for Daylight Savings Time this weekend, I love the idea of using it as an opportunity to talk to our kids about why having access to energy matters. And that’s what the...

Read More

The coolest free printable Year of the Goat coloring page to ring in the Chinese New Year

For a little Chinese New Year celebration this evening, I’ll be tracking down some delicious take-out dumplings at my local Chinese food joint (in lieu of my Chinese mom’s amazing cooking, sniffle), and printing out a few copies of this free Year of the Goat printable coloring page that I know my kids will love. What a cool, modern design to bring the Chinese Zodiac to life–which trust me, is pretty hard to find, if you’ve ever searched for free Chinese New Year printables. All you need is your printer, some crayons, and you’ve got a fun, simple way to share a cultural experience with your kids....

Read More

The 2015 NY International Children’s Film Festival lineup. You want to go.

If like me, you fell in love with the art of animation all over again after losing yourself in the artistry of releases like The Book of Life, The Boxtrolls, and the totally-robbed-by-the-award-show-establishment LEGO Movie, then listen up: The NY International Children’s Film Festival is coming! (Yes, I am a total animation geek. Let’s talk Bill Plympton sometime.) – Don’t miss an exclusive discount for our readers below –  Looking at the terrific lineup, I was immediately excited about the North American premiere of When Marnie Was There (above). This is the latest offering from Studio Ghibli, directed by Hiromasa Yonebayashi who brought us the wonderful The...

Read More

Happy Handmade: The super-fun, super doable new craft e-book for kids.

Sometimes I see the same crafts in crafting books for kids over and over again, but the ideas in the new e-book Happy Handmade, are fresh and fun, with diverse perspectives from 17 creative contributors. We’re talking respected craft and DIY bloggers like Mari Richards at Small for Big, Eva Monleón at Misako Mimoko, and Ana at Babble Dabble Do. From scented orange-peel candles to a braided belt to sock puppets and doll houses made from shoe boxes, there’s something for every crafty kid here.  And fear not crafting newbies; these are mostly simple, 101-level craft projects you can make with materials you likely already have at home, like toilet...

Read More

21 interesting, educational indoor activities to keep kids happy when you’re stuck indoors

If you have young ones, we recently shared 23 fun, educational activities for preschoolers and young kids. But as your kids get older, it can even more challenging to find cool, educational indoor activities when they’re clamoring to play with the XBox. So we’ve put together 21 fantastic ideas early grade schoolers, to help grow their minds and muscles, whether you’re snowed in, watching a cold rainfall outside, or live in Southern California and just need to get out of the balmy 73-degree weather for an hour or two. (Oh, the problems.) These are the ideas that we put to use...

Read More

How to make loom bands with your fingers: 10 awesome patterns and video tutorials

The Rainbow Loom band bracelets (and necklaces, charms, rings, headbands, oh my) we’ve shared here are just as popular as ever, as kids find new ways to put them to use. Now, the trend is to ditch the looms entirely and learn how to make loom bands with your fingers. Our kids have been doing it, and they’re making the coolest crafts during playdates, on long car rides, or while watching TV. I still have bands scattered all over my house, and our loom band tutorial roundup (and our advanced loom band tutorials) continue to be some of the most popular posts on our site. But if...

Read More

23 ideas for fun, educational indoor activities for preschoolers and young kids. Because we need all the ideas we can get!

After the initial “yay, snow!” cheers comes the realization that you now have to come up with educational activities for your preschoolers or kindergarteners, to help keep them busy–and ideally, learning–all day long. And while I totally understand letting PBS air a few more shows than you might normally allow, I also think an unexpected day stuck indoors is a great way to try out new activities that give their brains a workout and help reinforce important skills. It’s the kind of stuff you may not have time to do together on a regular old day.   That’s why I’m so pleased...

Read More

4 fantastic books for kids about MLK to help educate kids while you celebrate

Today we celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday and his innumerable contributions to this nation’s history and advancement and books for kids about MLK can be a great way to help little ones understand the importance of the day. Although it’s a holiday in most states and therefore, understandably, a day to relax, I do like that many Americans instead treat it as a “day on” and seek out ways to volunteer in their communities and participate in one of the Day of Service events scheduled across the country. It’s an excellent opportunity to usher in the concept of service to...

Read More

12 of the coolest baby gifts, gadgets, and gear of the year: Editors’ Best of 2014

Shopping for baby gifts might just be among our favorite kind of shopping to do, and we’ve featured no shortage of amazing baby gift ideas on our site this year. (If we do say so ourselves). After much consideration, deliberation, and debate, we’ve narrowed it down to the very coolest, all of which we would have loved to receive ourselves when our little ones were born. Here, our picks for 12 of the best new baby gifts of 2014. That will be just as cool to give to some lucky parents in 2015.   This is post is part of of our annual series of Editors...

Read More

6 fun new family games to freshen up your stash. Or your stache.

When the holidays–and the cold weather–hit, it’s the time I make sure our games are in good shape. As in, half the cards from UNO aren’t missing and there is actually Monopoly money in the Monopoly game. As opposed to the play kitchen. (I know you feel me, mamas.) With more than a few kids and relatives visiting over the holidays, here are a few new family games made by smaller companies we’ve added to our repertoire this year. Plus, this is a great time to stock up, with all the last minute shopping deals, whether or not they make it in...

Read More

Connect Four, only in wood. And gorgeous.

My husband comes from a family of players. Game players, that is. The next time we host a family dinner, I’d love to pull out this gorgeous four in a row wood game to engage in a bit of healthy competition. (Spoiler alert: I’ve always been awesome at Connect 4.) This wood game from Monkey Pod Games still requires strategy, just like the plastic version we all grew up playing. It’s still fast paced, and it still, I imagine, makes a satisfying “clink” when you stack one wooden disc atop another. Didn’t you just love that sound when you were a kid? The fact that this four...

Read More

Easy Christmas cookie shortcut: Walkers shortbread. Really!

If you would love to decorate cookies with the kids but have a to-do list as long as mine, my new favorite, and delicious, shortcut to easy Christmas cookies may work for you. It’s those amazing, pure butter shortbread cookies from Walkers, the Scottish company that you can find all over the place. Unlike some other store-bought cookies, Walkers’ aren’t made with a bunch of preservatives or ingredients like hydrogenated-or-high-fructose anything. If you’ve never looked at the label, there are only four ingredients: wheat flour, butter, sugar, and salt. Just like I’d make, if I didn’t have that pesky to-do list. So for easy cookie decorating, I...

Read More

Macaroni and Cruise: A totally different kind of family cruise featuring some of our favorite bands

If you’re looking for a family gift this holiday that blows a lot of ideas out of the water, I’ve got one to float by you: a cruise. We did it a couple of years ago, and the kids were thrilled when they realized that the box full of sunscreen, snorkels, and travel brochures meant that they’d be hitting the high seas later in the year. Kristen and Liz have checked out the Disney Cruises with their families. But now there’s one more and it’s not like Disney at all. This year’s gift vacation hit for me is the new Macaroni and Cruise family vacation, a four-night...

Read More

#GivingTuesday: 7 amazing organizations to help you give back as a family all year long.

We love how #GivingTuesday has become such a widespread tradition across the US in just two years, and we’ve been thrilled to share some of our favorite ways to give back–on this day and any day. We love promoting our favorite charities and causes, and gifts that give back, but this year, in honor of #GivingTuesday, we’re highlighting family volunteer opportunities. I can’t think of a better way to balance out the post-Thanksgiving retail focus, and maybe even to start a new tradition for your kids, than to get out there and give back to others. In fact, it’s become a really wonderful aspect of...

Read More

3 amazing new picture books for kids and parents to love

For those of us who love great illustration as much as a great story, I’ve found three new picture books that are worth making space for in your kids’ bookcase or wrapping to give to a child this holiday. What I love most about all three is that they’ll keep you talking about what you see as you go through the pages and maybe even long after the book cover is closed.   Flora and the Flamingo, one of my family’s favorite recent picture books and a 2013 Caldecott Honor book, has a sequel that is just perfect for these colder days. Flora...

Read More

Kid-friendly Chicago activities: The best museum exhibits for kids

This year my husband and I loaded everyone up (even the grandparents) for a long weekend over fall break, and flew to Chicago, one of my very favorite cities, in search of some awesome kid-friendly activities. Our focus: checking out all the must-see exhibits for kids at Chicago museums. Lest you think that New York and DC are the only big museum cities in the US, know that Chicago has a ton of awesome options. In fact, it was a lot to tackle, especially with three children in tow, but I’ve survived to tell you it can be done–as long as you embrace the idea...

Read More

Color sugar skulls for Dia de los Muertos.

Dia de los Muertos may sound ominous, but this holiday recognized in Mexico and throughout Latin America is traditionally a sweet time for families to come together to pray for and to celebrate their loved ones who have died. Those who follow the tradition devoutly will build an altar and honor their deceased with popular symbols like sugar skulls and skeletons, marigolds, and the favorite foods of the loved one. My kids and I are planning join in this year by completing these gorgeous sugar skull coloring pages.   This instantly downloadable 21-page sugar skull coloring pages for Dia de los Muertos from Etsy shop...

Read More

Follow us on Instagram!

Subscribe

Pin It on Pinterest