Archive for the 'General Family' Category

Summer’s Here, Now What?

The day has finally arrived. The moment every kid waits for. The last bell of the school year has rung, signifying the transition from one grade to another…and the beginning of summer vacation. So, now what? The loss of a school schedule can easily turn into a lazy schedule of coach potatoes and cartoon surfing during the day. But how do you inspire your kids to get out and have some fun in the sun?

We make New Years resolutions, so why not make summer resolutions as well? Resolve to get your minds and bodies as active and creative as ever! Instead of setting tons of restrictions which leave everyone feel as though they are missing out, simply create an “Enticing Summer Schedule.” Decide events as a family, marking them on your calender and sticking to them! There’s no need to over-think this concept. One example could be to have a BBQ. Let your kids season the meats and toss the salad. Also let them set the outdoor table and decorate and color the napkins so everyone can enjoy the atmosphere they helped create. Most importantly, take part in the activities your kids are doing.

The summer opportunities are endless. How about taking a hike? You can make hiking enjoyable for little ones by toting along a magnifying glass or binoculars to observe a plethora of creatures; from the ones slithering on the ground, to the ones soaring through the blue skies. You’ll be surprised at the bugs and animals that may pop out to say hello!

Most importantly, take pictures of your outings and encourage your kids to talk about their experiences with friends and family. The best memories are cherished because of how wonderful everyone felt being together as a loving family! Enjoy a summer of reconnecting with the ones you love.

— Sameena Bachmeier is a children’s writer living in SW Washington. Her articles on family-life and parenting are featured in Family Academy Magazine, and other online resources.

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Riding the Bus for Fun: Safe, Economical, Socially Conscious and Enjoyable

I live in a city where the buses and light rail are very clean so riding the bus is a pleasant experience. However, since I moved here 13 years ago, riding the bus usually meant something was wrong like my car was broken or my husband accidentally took my car keys to work. (true story)
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Get A New Wardrobe: Save Money this Spring!


Spring is here and in many places in the United States, the flowers are blooming and the grass is starting to peek through the snow. With the idea of warmer weather coming soon, you might be itching to pull out a few pieces of warm weather clothing to lift your spirits.

…family-friendly choices to update your wardrobe without breaking the bank.

For many us who store our summer clothes away for the winter, we pull them out only to find they don’t fit or aren’t in good shape. I went online and checked out a few consignment and second hand shops that offer excellent family-friendly choices to update your wardrobe without breaking the bank and fighting crowds in the mall.
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Preparing for Summer Fun NOW!

If your family is anything like mine, you wait until the last minute to plan family outings. When you do want to go do something like camp in your favorite place, everything is full. If you follow these basic steps for preparing for summer, you will be organized and ready to hit the trails or the campground or ready for a nice barbecue in your backyard.
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10 Tips for Getting a Workout at the Playground – for Children and Adults


One of the easiest ways to become more active, is to incorporate physical activity into the things you do already, such as visiting a playground.
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10 Tips for Encouraging Your Kids to Go Outside Part of the 10 Tips Series, where we bring the experts to you!

Get outside!

For this installment of the 10 Tips Series, we interviewed Pamela Ellgen, a Certified Personal Trainer in Phoenix, Arizona. Pamela trains kids as young as seven and enjoys motivating them and their parents toward a healthy and active lifestyle in the gym and outdoors.
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Ten Steps to a Simple, Square Foot Garden

Space and time limitations prevent most families from planting the massive gardens many of us remember from childhood. Keep in mind, a garden yielding a significant amount of produce can be planted in a space as small as a cubic foot planter. For this project, we’ll select a 4×4 foot patch in the yard.
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It’s Not Too Late to Get Your Kids Into Gardening: Build Summer Memories that Will Last A Lifetime

Gardening is for everyone!

There’s no doubting it, gardening provides a great opportunity for children to learn a much about self-sufficiency, math, science, and a host of other life lessons. There is magic and a sense of wonder in watching a seed’s journey from start to finish, and now is your opportunity to experience this with your child.

Every person experiences his or her own joy of gardening in a unique fashion. While some may revel in the feeling of becoming lost in their massive gardens, while others may find enjoyment in a small container garden on their back porch. Whatever the scope of your project might be, introducing your children to gardening can provide positive memories that will last a lifetime.
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10 Tips for Beating the Winter Blues

No matter where you live, even if it is sunny, you will at some point in the year experience the winter blahs. Your motivation to do anything decreases and you find your attitude towards life is foggy. As someone who has lived in snowy and rainy areas all of my life, here are a few things I do to keep my spirits up when everything is dark.
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10 Steps to Composting Your Way to A Better World

You don’t have to live on 5 acres of land or have a degree in Martha Stewart to compost. It’s a simple process anyone living in an apartment or mansion can do. The benefits are great and varied and can be very rewarding.
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