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Posts Tagged ‘Christmas 2014’

List of Kids Books that Would Make Great Christmas Gifts

December 20, 2014

gifts

List courtesy of The Huffington Post:

 

 

  • Up & Down by Britta Teckentrup
    Sometimes the simplest books are the best, and this story about two penguins trying to reach each other across a great divide is lovely. The youngest readers will love learning about directions as they lift flaps that take the penguins inside and outside of dark tunnels, in front of dolphins and behind sharks, and up and down icebergs until they’re together at last.

 

  • Before After by Anne-Margot Ramstein & Matthias Arégui
    An enormous book of paired illustrations each showing a different before and after will keep your children entertained for hours. The absence of text allows them to tell their own stories, and you may be surprised with what they come up with.

 

  • Red: A Crayon’s Story by Michael Hall
    Poor Red. It says red on his label, so he must be red. Except Red isn’t. He’s blue. Everyone tries to help him be a better red, until one day he makes a new friend who likes him just the way he is. Funny and clever, with a wonderful message about embracing who we are, Red is a great addition to anyone’s holiday list.

 

  • Kid Sheriff And The Terrible Toads by Bob Shea, Illustrated by Lane Smith
    There is only one thing that can save Drywater Gulch from the outlaws: 7-year old Sheriff Ryan, paleontologist and lawman extraordinaire. He may ride a tortoise, but he’s quick on the draw when it comes to capturing criminals.

 

  • Shh! We Have a Plan by Chris Haughton
    In another boldly illustrated book, Chris Haughton introduces us to four bumbling friends with a plan to capture a beautiful bird. After a night of disasters, you’d think they’d learn their lesson, and they do. Until they see a squirrel.

 

  • I Wanna Go Home by Karen Kaufman Orloff, Illustrated by David Catrow
    Not everyone likes to go stay with their grandparents when their parents fly off to Bora Bora. I’ve never been to Bora Bora, but I hear it’s lovely and definitely better than playing bridge for a week at Happy Hills Retirement Community. That’s what young Alex thinks, until he discovers that grandparents can be surprisingly cool, like when they let you use their bingo winnings to buy ice cream — or fingerpaint the kitchen. Sometimes, the best trips are those you dread most.

 

 

 

  • Animalium, Curated by Katie Scott and Jenny Broom
    This book is an extraordinary collection of information about the vast variety of Earth’s animals, from the smallest insect to the largest whale. It’s a portable museum, open anytime you want to visit. The book is glorious — full of oversized drawings reminiscent of old-fashioned botany or Audubon prints you can only find in rare book shops. The pages are luxurious — weighty in your hands and demanding long hours of uninterrupted attention. You’ll be enchanted, and so will your kids. (Originally featured in “26 Entertaining And Educational Books For Back-To-School Season”)

 

  • With the rate of deforestation and habitat destruction, it probably isn’t long before many of the gorgeous birds we know and love go the way of the Dodo or the Roc. But never fear, Aviary Wonders Inc.’s Spring Catalog and Instruction Manual is here to help! Design your own birds (mix ‘n’ match wings, bodies, beaks and tails), and Aviary Wonders will provide you with parts, assembly instructions and troubleshooting should your new bird fail to perform as expected. Pointed, wry, and completely original, Kate Samworth’s debut picture book is as disturbing as it is memorable. (Originally featured in “20 Terrific Books To Read With Your Kids This Spring”)

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Gift Ideas for Children that Are Not Toys

November 9, 2014

zoo

A clever and useful list of gift ideas by mother of 6 and blogger Rachel Jones:

 

18 Non-Toy Gifts for Children

1. Classes. Music, dance, riding, drawing — classes are a great way to encourage children in their interests and let them know that you pay attention to them and what they enjoy.

2. Memberships. Zoo, science museum, children’s museum, YMCA membership, etc. These are particularly great for family gifts! Many young families want to enjoy day outings, but affording them can be a challenge, so give them the gift of a yearly membership.

3. Subscriptions. Kids enjoy getting things in the mail. Why not encourage their reading by getting them a magazine subscription for something they are interested in!

4. Events. Movie tickets, or tickets to a play, concert or sports event are really exciting! Having an event to look forward to makes the rest of life more enjoyable.

5. Activities. Mini golf, bowling, skating rink. These are so much fun! And a big part of the fun is going together. Children love spending time with the adults in their lives; they want to see you enjoying your time as well as enjoying them.

6. Recipe and Ingredients. Kids love cooking with their parents. Baking something special or cooking dinner is an ideal time to spend together and learn life skills. Print out a recipe, purchase all the ingredients and set a date for cooking together.

7. Crafting Date. Our daughter loves making crafts. I do, too; I really do enjoy the creative aspect. But I rarely take time out to do it with her. These crafting dates mean the world to our creative little girl. Keep a basket of craft supplies and get out a book for inspiration. We like Sneaky Art: Crafty Surprises to Hide in Plain Sight, by Marthe Jocelyn.

8. Arts and Crafts supplies. If your craft box is running low, stock up a little on things you need. Add in something fun the kids haven’t used before. A gift of arts and crafts supplies often brings on the imagination, and kids can’t wait to get to work!

9. Coupons. An envelope of coupons that they can “spend” at any time: I’ll do one chore — no questions asked; movie and popcorn night, you pick the movie!; 1:1 game of cards or basketball (whatever the child’s interest is in); sit and read a book with me; stay up 1/2 hour past bedtime.

10. Restaurant Gift Card. Dinner, ice cream, coffee, cupcake — whatever suits their fancy! Give them the freedom of inviting whomever they wish: it may be mom or dad; it may be a grandparent, aunt or even teacher they would like to spend more time with.

11. Dress-Up Clothes. These do need to be limited, but two dresses and a couple play silks can get hours and hours of play!

12. Books. We get a lot of books from the library, but there are some that I just can’t find there, or it takes us longer to read through. We have read through the entire Little House series, Narnia, and are working our way through Shel Silverstein’s books. Be sure to pass the books on when you are done, so they don’t clutter up your home.

13. Clothes. When kids only have a certain amount of clothes, they often enjoy getting clothes. Make it a point to get something that fits their style. That may mean Western clothes, superhero, fancy dresses, etc.

14. Snacks. If your child is a foodie, they will love this! Some homemade granola or cookies made just for them is a special treat!

15. Outdoor Supplies. If you are an outdoorsy family, giving kids their own fishing tackle or gardening equipment can be a big deal. It’s also something that gets left on the shelf in the garage, so you always know right where to find it.

16. Telling Time. Many children these days don’t know how to read analog, or find it takes too long to think about it, so they search for a digital watch. Getting them a cool watch makes them want to be able to tell time on it. Boys, girls, and even teenagers can be excited about this.

17. Games and Puzzles. Games and puzzles are great activities for when kids have to be indoors. It’s a good practice to have individual quiet times during the day, and having a puzzle to sit and work on by themselves helps brain development and problem solving skills. Games teach a lot, too! My kids talk about how they passed geography, just because we played Risk when they were little. Monopoly and Payday have been popular and help cement math skills. Memory games are great for younger children.

18. Calendar. Many children like to know what is going on, what day it is, how many days until ____. These kids are the ones who want to know what the plan is for the day, the order in which things will happen, what time friends are expected over, etc. They struggle with spur-of-the-moment and can be frustrating if you are a spontaneous parent. But celebrate it! These children have many strengths, and make our world run more smoothly. 🙂 Embrace their inner schedule and get them their own calendar. They can write down their own classes, appointments, playdates, etc. And if they ask you, send them to their calendar so they can get used to being in control of their own schedule. You can even schedule “spontaneous days,” so they know that something different will happen that day. Trust me, it will help them enjoy the spontaneous outings!

 

Click on the link to read When Parents Get Busted!

Click on the link to read The Inconvenient Truth Kids Style

Click on the link to read The Quality Most Parents Want to Teach Their Children

Click on the link to read Are Our Expectations for Children Too High?

Click on the link to read 25 Ways to Approach the Dreaded ‘How was School Today?’ Question


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