Ideas for Outdoor Family Fun

Outdoor Play

At last, the days are getting longer and spring is on its way. It may still be a while before it’s warm enough to enjoy outdoor games with your youngsters, but now’s a great time to start planning your family activities for the warmer weather. Here are some simple games that you can enjoy with your kids in the comfort and convenience of your yard.

Make a base

It doesn’t take much to fire children’s imaginations. With some simple garden toys and equipment, you can help your little ones to create bases and dens that will keep them occupied for hours on end. Slides and climbing frames are always a hit, and tents can also be ideal. Bear in mind that these games are usually best if siblings and friends join in.

Scavenger Hunt for Kids

Hunt for treasure

No tot can resist the allure of a treasure hunt. You can hide all manner of objects around your garden, from sweets to toys. To ratchet up the excitement, introduce an element of competition. You might pit your kids against each other to see who can find the most objects, or introduce a time limit to make the challenge more difficult. However, to prevent squabbles, try to make these games fair and always share out the spoils.

Test your kids’ sporting skills

You no doubt want to ensure that your youngsters get plenty of exercise, and what better way to encourage them to burn some energy than by organizing your very own sports day. You can include everything from running races to obstacle courses and egg and spoon races.

Painting With Water

Get creative

You can also make use of your yard for a variety of creative activities. For example, give your kids some chalk and let them write and draw on your paving slabs. This might look messy, but a splash of water will quickly clear the scribbles away. Even easier, get your kids painting patterns with water. All you need for this is a container of water and an old paintbrush.

With games like these, you won’t struggle to keep your tots entertained this sunny season.

Safety Tips for Family Road Trips

Tips for Family Road Trips

Travel season is upon us and we want to make sure you and your family are safe while on the road-whether you are traveling 50 miles from home or 500. Following a checklist with a few safety precautions can help you have a safer and therefore more enjoyable trip.

1. Check car seats and seat belts – Before you even begin loading the car check to make sure that all car seats and seat belts are in good working order. Check online for child restraint laws and recommendations to be sure you children are in the proper car seat, booster, or seat belt.  Review your car seat manual for correct installation.

2. Check tires – Verify that all your tires have the recommended amount of pressure for your vehicle. Check the tread, look for separating from the wheel, inspect all the way around and make sure that there are no punctures, nails, or other objects in the tires that could cause a flat or blow out while on the road. If you will be traveling in snow, ice, or through rocky terrain be certain you have the right tires for the job. Don’t forget to give the spare tire a good going over as well.

3. Brake lights and blinkers – Check brakes and turn signals for functioning order. If lights are blown make sure you change bulbs, if they are still not working check for blown fuses, or loose wires.  Non working lights can often be the cause of accidents while traveling, a few minutes of inspection can save you headaches later.

Please visit Pomoco Chrysler Jeep of Hampton to read the last four tips five tips (I had to add just one more!).

LeapPad3 Review #LeapPad3

I’ve been in love with LeapFrog products since I’ve had kids.  The LeapFrog brand helps kids learn in a fun environment without them even realizing they’re learning.  On the Christmas list that I made for my daughter I had a LeapPad at the very top.  LeapFrog gave me a LeapPad for my daughter to review and I’m excited to share our experiences.

The LeapFrog LeapPad3 Kids’ Learning Tablet is available in two colors: Green and Pink.

Price: $99.95 on Amazon (Currently the green one is on sale for $89.59 and the pink one for $86.96!)

Description: (Ages 3-9 years)

  • Fast, powerful processor and sleek new design
  • Works with 1,000+ educator-approved* games & apps
  • Kid-safe web access to age-appropriate experiences
  • Personalizes the learning to every child**
  • Built kid-tough and drop tested for worry-free fun
  • Rechargeable lithium ion battery
Discover exciting experiences and thrilling adventures with LeapPad3 from LeapFrog, makers of the #1 kids’ learning tablets.† LeapPad3 is a fast, high-performance, fun-packed Wi-Fi tablet that allows kids to learn and play in a way that’s just right for them. Compact and kid-tough, the LeapPad3 tablet provides access to a 100% kid-perfect web experience and access to a library of 1,000+ age-appropriate, educator-approved* games, apps, eBooks, videos and more. LeapPad3 features LeapFrog’s powerful new quad-core chip and a sleek and beautiful design, for fast-action fun kids love.
  • LeapPad3 is the high-performance, fun-packed Wi-Fi tablet that allows kids to learn and play in a way that’s just right for them. Ages 3-9.
  • Access the most engaging learning library for kids’ tablets, with 1,000+ educator-approved games, apps, eBooks, videos and more. (Sold separately.)
  • >With Wi-Fi and LeapSearch powered by Zui, children can explore kid-friendly web content that is 100% pre-screened and approved by learning experts.
  • Features a lithium ion rechargeable battery, 4GB memory, parent controls, light-touch capacitive screen, two cameras and video recorders, and more.
  • Includes 10 apps: Photo Fun Ultra, Pet Pad Party game, Pet Chat, choice of 1 app download, Utility Suite and more.

LeapPad3

My Daughter’s Review:

She LOVES it!  She calls it her iPad.  It has built in apps, games, camera, photo lab to distort pictures, educational music, and so much more!  She loves that it comes with her very own stylus, or pen as she calls it, so that she doesn’t have to search for one of mine.  LeapFrog knows that they’re doing and they attached the stylus.  Well done!

It’s very light weight which is great for my three year old but it’s also built tough which is also perfect for little hands.  I like that it’s personalized for my daughter, it even has her name at the top of the main screen.  The touch screen is quick and easy to use.

I could go on and on naming a ton of little things that I like about it but best of all, I like that it helps her learn!  The apps, games, and videos are all educational – at least the ones I’ve tried.  Right now she’s working on her writing, reinforcing her letter sounds and learning letter blends.  Besides the camera, her favorite thing about her LeapPad is the LeapFrog Letter Factory video.  I’ve watched it with her before and it’s quite a cute video with catchy songs to help her really absorb the material and make learning fun.

LeapPad Review

The battery lasts for 6 hours of continuous use but we don’t use technology for extended periods of time so it lasts and lasts for us.  I’m excited to add yet another fun LeapFrog learning tool to our assortment of homeschooling supplies!

If you have a LeapPad, what’s your child’s favorite game?

ADHD or Sleep Apnea? Take the Easy Peezy Test

EZPZ Test

Do you have a child that is hyperactive and has difficulty concentrating?  Have they been diagnosed with ADHD or you think they might be if you have them tested but you’re afraid a doctor will over medicate them?  Your child may have Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA), a condition that is often misdiagnosed and (wrongly) medically treated as ADHD.  Did you know that as many as 50% of children diagnosed with ADHD actually have pediatric OSA?

OSA is a dangerous condition in that causes momentary pauses in your child’s breathing pattern while they’re sleeping. Breathing actually stops because the airway collapses, blocking the flow of oxygen for short periods of time.  Isn’t that terrifying? OSA has been linked to increased child obesity, depression, and bed-wetting. Interrupted sleep frequently can lead to other symptoms – such as fatigue, irritability, hyperactivity, inattentiveness, and an inability to concentrate – all of which can have a negative impact on a child’s education and development. If left undetected and untreated, OSA can lead to high blood pressure and higher risks of diabetes or heart disease as children grow into adults.  How can you find out if your kid has OSA?  A costly sleep study used to be the only way.

You may or may not know that I have a sleeping disorder and I have had a sleep study conducted in a lab overnight.  {I don’t quit breathing, I just sleep or want to sleep all. the. time.  You can read more about my hypersomnia diagnosis.}  I was in my upper teens when I had my study and it wasn’t very fun then, I can’t imagine doing that as a child.  I would have been frightened beyond belief!  Not to mention that they are very costly ranging from $1500 to $3000 per night and that many clinics won’t even accommodate children.  Thankfully now there’s an alternative to a sleep lab called The Easy Peezy Test.

The Easy Peezy Test, I like the sound of that already!  The Easy Peezy Test, which includes a specimen cup and pre-paid return mailer, is mailed to your home. Simply return the urine sample to the lab for analysis. Within three days of receiving the test, results will be provided to your child’s doctor. If your child has OSA, you can begin discussing treatment. Testing for OSA in kids can be that simple, and at a fraction of the cost of a sleep lab study!  #PeeInACup

A preliminary study shows this test has a 96.5% accuracy rate in diagnosing OSA in children.  Just think of how many kids would be spared from medication if they would only take this test!  However, $100,000 is needed to finish development and validation of the Easy Peezy Test.  To support the Indiegogo campaign and find out more information visit http://igg.me/at/easypeezy.

EZPZ

Stay in touch with Indiegogo on Facebook, Twitter or YouTube for up to date information.

This post was brought to you by the Indiegogo campaign.

The Last Time

Tonight, my husband shared with me a poem that he found on Facebook.  A poem that made me cry.  A poem that gave me a renewed joy for the little things in life.  I hope you’ll enjoy it too!

The Last Time

Taryn McLean is the author of this heartfelt poem.

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If you'd like to share this poem on your site please don't copy the above image but instead use the one below and link back to this page.  Thank you! :)

The Last Time Poem