Oct 24 2014

Barnes & Noble Storytime Children’s Event Details and Participating Locations:

Barnes and Noble locations will be hosting a Kids Storytime Special Event featuring the new title Click, Clack, Boo!: A Tricky Treat by Doreen Cronin on Saturday, October 25, 2014.

Head over to your local Barnes & Noble for this Halloween Storytime with fun giveaways and activities. Trick-or-treat?  Be sure to wear your costume for trick-or-treating throughout the store.   ​Check for times and locations near you.

Click, Clack, Boo!: A Tricky Treat

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Oct 24 2014

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Charleston Explorer Goodies

Since we go to Charleston a few times every year we signed the kids up for their Charleston Explorers Club a little over a year ago.  It was a great way to explore the Charleston area, learn pieces of history or science and more plus earn a few prizes along the way.  We have always enjoy our trips to Charleston and every time we try to go to a new place which made the Charleston Explorers a great program for our kids.

You could pick up a Charleston Explorer passport at any of the Charleston Area Visitors Centers.  It was free for any kid under 18 to sign up for the club.  When the kids enrolled they each received a passport, prize, a list of more than 30 participating locations, and information about how the program worked.  Each time the kids visited one of the locations they would get a stamp specific to that location and enter the “stamp code” into their online profile and rate the place they visited.  Every 5 stamps they would earn a prize that was mailed directly to our house.  We never knew what the prizes would be and the kids were always very happy with the neat items that came in the mail.

Some of the places where you got the stamps were free while others required paid admission.  Several of the places you could buy discounted tickets if you bundled them together.  The program started back in April 2011 and recently ended.  It is probably one of the best travel programs we have participated in, it was ran well, the prizes were amazing, and we had a blast doing the Charleston Explorers with the kids.  We would love to see them do another program for the kids in the future!

I would encourage you to check out any of these types of explorers programs in your local area or another area where you visit frequently.  These are programs can provide great learning opportunities for your kids.  It was a wonderful experience for our whole family.   I wish more places had kids programs like this one.

Some of the items we received:

  • Charleston Explorers Water Bottles
  • Charleston Explorers Magnetic Keychains with Flashlights
  • Charleston Explorers Binoculars
  • Charleston Explorers Pens
  • Charleston Explorers Stickers
  • Charleston Explorers Bag
  • Charleston Explorers Clips
  • $25 Wonder Works Toy Store Gift Cards
  • iPod Touch

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The highlighted places on our brochure are the ones we have visited since we started the Charleston Explorers program!  Great places to visit and wonderful times exploring with the kids!

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The girls passport books!  Here is what two of their pages look like with the Fort Sumter, Patriots Point, Heyward Washington House, Nathaniel Russell House, Edmonston Alston House, and Aiken Rhett House stamps on these two pages.  We filled their passport books up.  The girls loved getting their stamps at the end of their tours.

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One of the prizes they earned was a $25 Gift Card each from Wonder Works a Toy Store in Charleston.  The girls can’t wait for our next trip to Charleston so they can use their gift cards!

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The girls were so excited when FedEx dropped off a package at our “Google only” household! Guess, we now need to include another platform…. Their final Charleston Explorers prize was an iPod Touch!  They were so very EXCITED to receive the iPod! Wow!!! Thanks Charleston for making our trips so enjoyable and for the amazing prizes! It has been a awesome exploring with the family and we look forward to our next visit!  We still have several more locations we want to see on our list!

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Oct 24 2014

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Oct 23 2014

Date Night at Hearts of Clay Pottery

Brina working on her new plate!

Earlier this year I took the girls to Hearts of Clay to make their first pottery creations.  We were super excited when we got the call from Hearts of Clay saying that the items were ready to pick up, however, one of the pieces had broken (Brina’s big flower plate).  They were very sweet and offered to let her create another plate if she wanted to come in and do it.  Although, she was sad about the broken plate that she had worked so hard on she was a good sport and felt a lot better knowing she could create another one.  We made it into a Mom-Daughter Date Night and had a great time being creative together.  Thankful for Hearts of Clay and their kindness in letting her come make a new plate.  We had a wonderful time and look forward to another fun activity at Hearts of Clay in the future.

Mom Daughter Date Night at Hearts of Clay Pottery

Brina’s new plate!  She made the plate beautiful, but simple this time around.  Instead of a flower she chose a square shape.  Her colors are very similar to the last one she created.

We also picked up the pieces that were done from the previous visit to Hearts of Clay!  They turned out really well!  Glad the girls enjoyed this fun adventure!

Hearts of Clay Pottery

All the pieces that survived the first fun creative evening at Hearts of Clay.  Karlie’s is the rocket plate and the goat!  Brina’s is the purple heart, black lab, giraffe, and cat (whose tail fell off).

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Karlie was so thrilled “Oreo” the goat came out well.

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Karlie loves space so her rocket, stars, and planet plate was a perfect display of something she enjoys!  She was pleased with how it turned out!

We are looking forward to seeing how this Brina’s recent plate turned out along with her other little creations she made with the extra clay.  We met up with Jake and Karlie after finishing up at Hearts of Clay and the four of us went out to dinner together.  It was nice to spend a little one-on-one time with Brina as well as a relaxing rest of the evening with the family.

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Oct 22 2014

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A kid activity that teaches about how our words impact others.

We have been working through two devotional books with the girls lately.  One of them goes through the Bible in a year and the other one is more of an hands on activity with a lesson called Object Talks for Any Day by Verna L. Kokmeyer.  The kids like both of them, however, we only do the Object Talks devotional on days when we have a little more time because they require preparation, an activity, lesson, and conversation about the lesson taught.

This particular lesson was about our words and watching what we say to others. This was a great lesson for the beginning of the school year as well as a great reminder for all of us (both kids and parents) that our words have an impact on those around us.

Objects:  A plate and tube of toothpaste.

Applicable Bible Verse:  “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.” – Psalm 19:14 (ESV)

Activity:

  1. Ask for a volunteer.
  2. Have the volunteer squeeze all the toothpaste out of the tube onto the plate.
  3. Ask for another volunteer.
  4. Have them try and put all the toothpaste from the plate back into the toothpaste tube.

Lesson to Talk About:  Like the toothpaste our words can come out pretty quickly and easily, however, once our words are out we cannot take them back.  We have all said something to someone and instantly or later realized it probably wasn’t the best thing to say.  Our words can have a powerful impact on those around us.  They can make people laugh, cry, hurt others feelings, and much more.  Plus when we speak poorly to or about others it makes us look bad as well.  It is important that we allow our thoughts and words to be good, encouraging, wholesome, and kind to those we encounter.  What we fill our hearts and minds with will often come out our mouth and reveal what we are truly thinking.  Much like the impossible task of getting toothpaste back into the tube we cannot take back the words we say to others.  The toothpaste in this example was contained to the plate, however, our words can make a big mess and cause hurt to others for a very long time.

We all could spend a little more time focusing our hearts, minds, and thoughts on good things.  Life is short and we want to spend our time being an encouragement and blessing to those around us.  May we seek God’s wisdom regarding our thoughts and our speech.

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We used a sample of Tom’s of Maine toothpaste I received in the mail for this activity. A sample size is big enough to get the point across!

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Brina squeezing out all the toothpaste onto the plate!  Like the toothpaste, it’s amazing how quickly our words can come out of our mouths.

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The toothpaste is out!

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Karlie attempting the impossible task of putting all the toothpaste back into the tube!  Once our words our spoken we cannot take them back.

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She tried a lot of different ways to get the toothpaste back into the tube – fingers, toothpaste cap, toothpick, and more yet it was a messy and impossible to get it all of the toothpaste back into the tube.  The girls like these type of devotional lessons because they are interactive, have a creative and visual way to teach the lesson, and they tend to be more memorable for them.  All of us could probably use a reminder regarding our words and the impact they have on others.

 

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