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Showing posts from April, 2012

'F' is for Free & Frugal Family Fun: Week of April 30

Festival of Nations , May 3-6, St. Paul River Centre, fill out this short survey to get your FREE! bus tickets to the Festival of Nations. May Day Parade , Heart of the Beast Puppet Theatre, Sun, May 6, 1 PM, parade starts at corner of 25th Street and Bloomington Ave in South Minneapolis Bloomington Curbside Clean Up Days - great day to get rid of stuff or find some treasures! See schedule on above link KID'S CONSIGNMENT SALE EVENTS Treasure Hunt Sales (May 4-6) Ames Arena in Lakeville. Eden Prairire Just Bewteen Friends —May 3-6 at the former Frank's Nursery Hennepin County Garage Sales MALL of AMERICA EVENTS   Toddler Tuesdays: Under the Sea Party, Tues, May 1, 10 AM - noon, West Market Square. Click here for upcoming Toddler Tuesdays events . Hugo , Sat, May 5, 10 AM, Free Family Flicks at the Mall of America, first-come, first-served, as seating is limited to the theater capacity. FREE! Click here for future showings Young Inventors Fair,

Barnes and Noble Storytime

Barnes and Noble Story Time – FREE and recurring Check out the Barnes and Noble Online Storytime Mondays – 11 AM, Burnsville Mondays – 10 AM, Eagan Tuesdays – 10:30 AM, Eden Pairie Wednesdays – 11 AM, Edina Thursdays – 10 AM, Highland Park Fridays – 11 AM, Edina, Fridays – 7 PM, Highland Park, PJRama storytime Splat the Cat , Ridgedale, Tues, May 1, 10 AM Charles Fuge Stories, Edina, Wed, May 2, 11 AM Dr. Seuss Bird Stories , Edina, Fri, May 4, 11 AM Splat the Cat , Ridgedale, Fri, May 4, 10 AM Mother's Day! , Ridgedale, Tues, May 8, 10 AM ‘Going to Bed’ Books , Edina, Wed, May 9, 11 AM Clifford's Happy Mother's Day , Edina, May 11, 11 AM Mother's Day! , Ridgedale, Fri, May 11, 10 AM Friendship! , Ridgedale, Tues, May 15, 10 AM Pinkalicious , Edina, Wed, May 16, 11 AM Construction Site Stories , Edina, Fri, May 18, 11 AM Friendship! , Ridgedale, Fri, May 18, 10 AM Baseball! , Ridgedale, Tues, May 22, 10 AM Splat the Cat , Edina, Wed, May

T is for Toddler Tuesdays at the Mall of America

Toddler Tuesdays: Diego's Rainforest Fiesta Tuesday, May 8 10 a.m. - Noon The Patio - see on map Calling all Animal Rescuers! Join us at Toddler Tuesdays ® for a Rainforest Fiesta with Diego! Make your own wild animal mask, meet and greet with Diego from 10 - 10:30 and 11 - 11:30 a.m. and stick around for an animal jam dance party! Toddler Tuesdays: Treasure Beyond Measure Pirate Show Tuesday, May 22 10 a.m. - Noon Rotunda - see on map When the greedy Capt’n Curley inherits his father’s pirate ship, he seeks to locate the world’s greatest treasure! Join this silly pirate as he recruits rookie pirates and embarks on an adventure filled with jokes, laughs and treasures! Shows at 10 and 11 a.m. Toddler Tuesdays: The Cat in the Hat Tuesday, May 29 10 a.m. - Noon Rotunda - see on map Everyone’s favorite cat is coming to Toddler Tuesdays®! Help us celebrate the story of the cat that transformed a dull, rainy afternoon into a magical a

Alphabet Summer Suggestions A to Z

The following is an A to Z list of fun ideas to do with your child(ren) this summer.  It’s a great idea to have your child use one notebook for their entire Alphabet Summer to track the things they have done and learned.  This is a terrific place to compile daily or weekly journal entries, pictures, drawings, and also a place to write what they’ve learned. The intent of this list is not that you try to do or learn about every single item, but to serve as a resource for either inspiring your own ideas or filling in the bla nks as you start to come up with your own plans.  Highlight different letters as needed, for instance, miniature golf could be under "M" or "G". At the bottom of this list, you'll find two pages of a List Maker you can use to write your own ideas to celebrate the alphabet this summer. A – Alphabetize your books, DVDs, CD, recipes, meet a local artist and learn about their work, visit local attractions like museums, learnall about dif

Yucky Stuff (Grossology) A to Z

It’s certainly not my favorite subject, but the field of “Grossology” has become a big hit with kids who like to learn about the world and stuff that most of us think is yucky.  Learning about the field of Grossology is a great way to introduce different aspect of science and experiments into your Alphabet Summer .   "Grossology" is a current exhibit at the Minnesota Children's Museum from now until May 13. A – acne B  - bacteria, blood, burping, bats, blisters, bile, bed bugs, back wash C- cockroaches, cud, cigarette D – dandruff, dust mites, dissection, double dipping E – earwax, eels, eye lash mites F – farts, fleas G – germ H – halitosis (bad breath) I – insects J – jellyfish K – kopi luwak L – leeches, lice , litter, belly button lint M – maggot, mucus, mold, mildew O – body odor P – parasites, pee, poop, pus R – rats, rashes S – scabs, skunks, slugs, snakes, snot, spiders, spitting, slime, scat T – ticks, toilets, tobacco chew, tumor, tap

U.S.A. States and Territories A to Z

A – Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, American Samoa* C – California, Colorado, Connecticut D – Delaware, District of Columbia F – Florida G – Georgia, Guam* H – Hawaii I – Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa K – Kansas, Kentucky L – Louisiana M – Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana N – Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, N. Mariana Is* O – Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon P – Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico* R – Rhode Island S – South Carolina, South Dakota T – Tennessee, Texas U – Utah, U.S. Virgin Islands* V – Vermont, Virginia W – Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming * Territory  Questions to Answer: Locate the state on a map. What year did this place become a state or territory? What does the state flag look like? Where is the state capital? What is the state bird and flower? Have you ever been to that state? Do you know anyone who lives

Transportation A to Z

Transportation Alphabeep! By Debora Pearson Draw a picture of this form of transportation Have you ever used this method of transportation? Do you know of anyone who has used this form of transportation? Are there any books or movies that highlight this form of transportation? A – airplanes, automobile, Autobahn, air carrier B – bus, blimp, bicycle, boat C – canoe, car, combine, camel, canal D – driving, dump truck, donkey E – elephant, expressway F – float plane, ferry, freeway G - glider H – helicopter, hot air balloon, horse I – inflatable boat J – jetpack, jeep K - kayak L - lorry M – motorcycle, minivan N – naval fleet O - oxen P - puddle jumper, plane, parachute R – rowboat, raft, rocket S – semi-truck, speed boat, sail boat, scooter, ship, spaceship, subway, sky diving T – train, truck, tractor, taxi, toll way, tricycle U - unicycle

Sports A to Z

If you’re so lucky to have your Alphabet Summer during the Olympics, be sure to try to plan something ahead of time around the different summer sports that will be highlighted.  Check out the official website of the Olympics for more information: What kind of equipment is needed for this sport? Where and when did this sport originate? Have you ever played this sport? What is your favorite sport? Do you know anyone who plays this sport? Are there any famous people who play this sport as a professional? Are there any books or movies that highlight this sport? A – aerobics, archery, aquatics, automobile racing B – Badminton, biking, boxing, basketball, baseball, bocce ball, bowling, body building, bull fighting, boomerang, bobsleigh, biathlon, billiards C – croquet, cricket, cross country skiing, curling, cycling, canoeing D – darts, deep sea diving, downhill skiing, dancing, diving, dog training, dog sledding, decathlon E - equestrian F – football, fishi

Science and Mathmatics A to Z

It can be really fun to fill the summer up with learning, especially about science and math.  Many local community education programs and science museums offer camps based on science and experiments.   A fun book to read is Mathemagic – Number Tricks by Lydia Colgan. Here are a few websites that provide all kinds of easy science experiments and projects:   A – aviation/airplanes, anatomy, astronomy, algebra, atmosphererics, aerodynamics, anthropology, archeology B – behavioral science, biology, biotechnology C – computer science, civil engineering, chemistry D – digital photography E – earth and environmental science, environmental engineering, energy and power, electricity and electronics F – food science, full moon G – genetics, genomics, geometry, geology, geography H – human behavi

ABC Books A to Z

It could be really fun for children to make their own alphabetical lists of authors, subjects, fairytales, storybook characters, or even comic book heroes (check out Superhero ABC by Bob McLeod ) based on the alphabet to read during your summer. has a detailed listing of ABC books. A ABC3D by Marion Bataille A is for America: An American Alphabet by Devin Scillian A is for Angry by Sarah Boynton A is for Salad by Mike Lester Alphab ‘art: Find the Letters Hidden in the Paintings by Anne Guery The Alphabet Book by P.D. Eastman Alphabeep! By Debora Pearson Alpha Bugs: A Pop-up Alphabet by David A. Carter Alphabet City by Stephen T. Johnson The Alphabet from A to Y with Bonus Letter Z by Steve Martin Alphabet Mystery by Audrey Wood Alphabet Soup by Scott Gustafson AlphaOops!: The Day Z Went First by Alethea Kontis Amazing Animal Alphabet by Richard Edwards Animalia by Graeme Base Antler Bear Canoe by Betsy Bowen “A” Was Once an Apple Pie

Magical and Mythical Creatures A to Z

A - aliens, angels   B - Big Foot, banshee, basilisk , black dog, Bogeyman C - Cyclops, centaur, cherubs, Cupid , Chupacabra, Cerebrus, Chimaera, Cyclops D - Dragons, Dracula E - Elves   F - Fairies, Father Frost , Frankenstein G - Gargoyles, goblins, Griffins, gnomes, ghosts, gremlins, Greek Gods, Gogmagog, Golem, Gorgon, Genrir, Gargantua H - Hobgoblin, Hobbits, hydra, hippogriff, headless horseman , Harpy, Hydra I – Itcuintlipotzotli, imp J - Jack Frost, jack-o-lope , Jersey Devil K - Kraken, Kampe, Kelpie, Knockers, King Kong L - Loch Ness Monster, leprechaun , Leviathan M - Medusa, mummies, mermaids, merpeople, magician, minotaur, manticore, Mothra, Mothman N - Nymphs, Naiad   O - Ores, Ouroboros, Odin, Oberon , oni P - Pegasus, Phoenix, Pixie, poltergeist, Puck Q - Quanlier R - Roc, Reptoid Alien S - Sprite, sphinx, Selkie, Sorcerer, Sentor, sphinx, sea serpents, Scylla T - Troll, Tooth Fairy, trolls, Thor , Tokoloshe, Thunderbird U - Unicorn, U

Musical Instruments A to Z

A – accordion, a coustic guitar B – bagpipes, banjo, bassoon, bell, bongo, bugle C – castanets, cello, clarinet, conga, cornet, cymbals, chimes, cowbell, clarinet D – drums E – ektara, erhu, erxian F – flute, flutophone, flugelhorn, French horn, finger cymbals, fiddle G – glockenspiel, gongs, guitar, glass chord H – harmonica, harp, harpsichord, horn, Harp, Harpsichord, I - Ipu , Igil, Irish bouzouki, Inci, Irish Uilleann, Istarski mih J - jug Janggu, Jew’s harp, Jiaohu, Jinghu, K – kazoo, keyboard, kettle drum L – lute,  lyre M – mandolin, maracas N – Naqara, Nyckelharpa, Nadaswaram, Natural Trumpet, Nay, Ney, Northumbrian small pipes, Nose flute O – organ, oboe P – piano, percussions, pipe organ, Piccolo Q – quinticlave, Qanun, Quena R – recorder, rain stick, rattle, reed pipe S – saxophone, snare drum, steel drum, strings, sousaphone, synthesizer, Spoons, Sitar, Slide guitar, Steel guitar, Slide whistle T – tambourine, triangle, trombone, trumpet, tuba, turntables, Tom

Hennepin County Libraries A to Z

Augsburg Park Brookdale Brooklyn Park Champlin East Lake Eden Prairie Edina Excelsior Franklin Golden Valley Hopkins Hosmer Linden Hills Long Lake Maple Grove Maple Plain Minneapolis Central Minnetonka Nokomis North Regional Northeast Osseo Oxboro Penn Lake Pierre Bottineau Plymouth Ridgedale Rockford Road Rogers Roosevelt  - closed for renovation Southdale Southeast St. Anthony St. Bonifacius St. Louis Park Sumner Walker Washburn Wayzata Webber Park Westonka

Spreading Kindness

When I first saw the movie Pay It Forward , I was immensely inspired to practice random acts of kindness in my daily life.  Sometimes when I feel at my lowest and disconnected from others, I try to do something kind such as donating a bag of food to the food shelter or leaving a quarter in my shopping cart at Aldi’s for the next person to use.  Maddie and I love to be coupon fairies and leave coupons next to the corresponding product at the grocery store.  I know how great it feels to find a coupon left behind and to be the recipient of unexpected kindness, but I also know it feels even better to be the person who practices kindness, and suggest that you encourage your children to practice random acts of kindness.   In August we celebrated the letter Q by going to the Q Kindness Café in St. Paul. It’s a wonderful little business district breakfast and lunch café.  The owners have filled the walls of the restaurant with inspirational pictures and quotes.  One thing I noticed was