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Organizing

How to organize your kids’ artwork in 5 easy steps


Display it
Display your children’s work of art throughout your home…don’t just limit artwork displays to the kitchen refrigerator, next to the pizza menu or scotched taped to the back of a door.  Creative displays not only look more appealing in your home but they add value to your child’s artwork.  Show your child that you value and appreciate their doodles and artwork by displaying it BEAUTIFULLY for a period of time.  In our home we have a bulletin board in the playroom that gets rotated weekly, a large bulletin board display in our mudroom that gets rotated monthly and picture frames throughout the house that display some of our favorites for 6-12 months.

Edit it
After you’ve displayed the artwork for a period of time have your child help you decide what you will keep, what you will give away and what you will photograph and/or throw away.  Once children get used to the idea that their artwork rotates through the house they tend to want to hand on to it less. In our home I’m often the one who wants to keep it up longer than my children!

Gift it
Encourage children to pick a family member or close friend that they would like to give some of their artwork to.  This can be done formally (in a frame), informally (presented as is) or used to create another gift such as notecards of their drawings, a calendar or even a mug. For grandparents consider giving them “art of the month” packages with a selection of original artwork created by their grandchildren.

Archive it
Once you’ve decided what you are keeping you have a few options.  Depending on the type of artwork and the size you may want to consider keeping the original in an archival box.  For larger pieces that are harder to store you can also scan or photograph the artwork and create a digital album showcasing your children’s work. Oftentimes this is just as much fun to look at as the original was. Especially since you could easily store 12 albums of your children’s artwork in less than a foot of shelf space!

Retire it
Once you’ve displayed it, edited it, gifted it and archived it the only thing left to do is retire any remaining artwork to your trash bin. Usually when your kids aren’t watching.  If you start to come down with a bad case of Mommy Guilt for not saving every piece of paper your dear child has touched, look around your house at the other pieces of art you do have up. Remember the art books you created from artwork you scanned or photographed.
  
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Straw Trainer Cup for Toddlers

Did you know that Playtex has come out with The First Lil’ Gripper Straw Trainer Cup to help babies/toddlers transition from bottles to cups?  Baby Sister likes it because she feels like a big girl.  Her brothers and sisters like it because she doesn’t try to steal their drinks and straws anymore!

What I like:

It’s BPA Free & Phthalate-free

Flexible soft straw doesn’t hurt sensitive gums
Daddy proof easy lid attachment (you know what I’m saying)
Slider to cover the straw and stop the cup from leaking all over your diaper bag
Squeezable cup to help get the liquid started in the straw
Available in 7 oz and 9 oz cup size

Dishwasher safe


What I’m trying to get over:

Cleaning the straw…I wish they sold a replacement pack of straws.

Also available at:
Babies R’ Us, Target, Kroger and Walmart

Disclaimer:

A complimentary cup was sent for review.  As always, my opinions, and those of my 18 month old are our own.  I do not post reviews for products I either don’t like or don’t believe are of value or interest to my fellow moms.  We’re all in this together, right?

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Bad Kitty by Nick Bruel

I’ve recently started to embrace sharing audio books with my children.  Although I will always be a fan of reading aloud to children (especially when they can read on their own), sometimes Moms need a break and that is when a good audio book can make a huge difference.  Audio books have come in handy for me when I’m cooking dinner or when I need a night off from reading 5 different bedtime stories to my children.

The latest edition to our library is Bad Kitty, by Nick Bruel, and read by Vanessa Williams. 


In addition to an entertaining story, what makes a picture book,  is of course, the illustrations…and what makes an audio picture book special is a fantastically entertaining reading with appropriate sound effects. Bad Kitty has all of the above!


The book takes the child through the alphabet and back—-four times!  However this book is not your typical “alphabet” book.  My girls learned about new vegetables and added quite a few words to their vocabulary thanks to a “variety of vultures” , “an assortment of anchovies”, and a “tormented little mouse”.

Disclaimer:

A complimentary review copy of Bad Kitty was provided by the Publisher.  As always, all opinions are my own.




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The Best Black Bean Soup recipe—-ever!

Lately its been in the 40′s, 50′s and 60′s in Florida.
I don’t do anything under 68 degrees so can I tell you how cold I am?

The good thing about being cold is that when I’m stuck inside I actually feel the need to cook something. So Big Daddy is very excited about this recent cold front in Florida.

Yesterday I gave Big Daddy a giant heart attack and actually cooked something, from scratch.  As opposed to just preparing the kid food and eating cereal for dinner.  Or leaving him to his own devices.

Yep, I’ve become a good wife like that.
I’m not proud, just exhausted.

As far as I’m concerned this is the Best Black Bean Soup Recipe, ever.
And I don’t even like beans.




Enjoy!
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iPad Apps for Moms

I think the time has come to share my favorite iPAD apps for Moms.
There is only one catch:  After reading my list you have to let me know if I missed any.  Yep, adding apps to your iPad is that addicting. Sort of makes up for the unfortunate name.

Corkulous

iBook

Also read:
iphone Apps for Moms
iPhone Apps for Road Warrior Wives
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