Archive for April 2014

My hometown: On feeling both at home and at out of place during the tween years

My hometown: On feeling both at home and at out of place during the tween years
My childhood was spent entirely in one small town, Pickerington, Ohio, and it was memorable more for what it did not have than what it did have when I lived there. It has since exploded and the new development makes it almost unrecognizable. It is frozen in my mind, though, as a small town, somewhat... Read more »

8 different May Day celebrations from around the world

<strong>May Pole</strong>
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Perhaps the most obviously named celebration, May Day often included a maypole. Dancing around the pole, most often while intertwining ribbons, was a tradition common in Germanic areas of Europe and in England. Experts agree that there is significance to the pole, ribbons and dance, but they disagree over exactly just what it is symbolic of. A decent contingent think it was just celebrating the arrival of nicer, warmer weather, and I'm in that camps.
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The Puritans were not fans of May Day and its pagan origins (pretty sure they never met a party they liked), and took the fun away, going so far as to outlawing maypoles in England in 1644 despite the fact that they had been popular for centuries by that point. Historians believe it was the Puritan dislike of the tradition that kept it from catching on in America.
May 1 is more than just the start of a new month. Depending on where you are in the world and what you observe, May Day can be a seasonal Spring holiday, a saint’s feast day, Labor Day, an occasion to honor native culture, or a combination of events. Check out some of the various... Read more »

Tech talk: teaching kids about hoaxes online

Tech talk: teaching kids about hoaxes online
This weekend, I checked Facebook and gasped at one of the status updates from a friend. It was a link saying that 17 people had been killed in a roller coaster accidence at Universal Studios in Florida. My husband asked what was wrong, and I told him. We talked about it briefly and I went... Read more »
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10 Facts about Mother's Day

10 Facts about Mother's Day
The second Sunday is May is Mother’s Day and in 2014, the holiday falls on May 11th. Mother’s Day became an official national holiday in the United States in 1914, making Mother’s Day 2014 the 100th official observance. Learn some fun facts about Mother’s Day, its history and how we celebrate today, below. * “Mothering... Read more »

Tween and teen conversation starter: What's on your bucket list?

Tween and teen conversation starter: What's on your bucket list?
What do chickens, Pawn Stars and hair donation all have in common? If you first thought, “Not much at all,” you’re right. But they did all end up on my tween’s bucket list. I had no idea that my tween even had a bucket list until I found it peeking out of a night stand... Read more »

12 Cosby Show clips that show why the Huxtables are great parenting role models

<iframe width="420" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/-1t9dg5dzQo?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe><br><br>Theo explains that he's not going to college because he's going to get a job like "regular people." The math lesson that follows is classic Cosby Show moment.
A conversation among ChicagoNow bloggers yesterday about parenting circled around to The Cosby Show, which I adore. Turns out I’m not the only fan of Clair and Cliff. The Huxtables are parenting role models for many. As parents, the Huxtables did everything right. They were loving, set boundaries and imparted morals. They said “no.” They... Read more »
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What parents need to know about the Omegle app

What parents need to know about the Omegle app
Tech Tuesday is back and there’s another app that parents need to know about: Omegle. It’s all about anonymously chatting with strangers online. It has both a website and an app. Omegle has the tag line “Talk to strangers!” That alone raises red flags. But there are other reasons parents should be concerned about Omegle... Read more »

10 Facts about Earth Day

April 22 is Earth Day, a celebration of our amazing planet and chance to learn how we can best care for it. Here are some facts about the history of Earth Day and events marking the occasion this year. * The first celebration of Earth Day took place on April 22, 1970,  making 2014′s observance... Read more »

Movie review of 'Bears' by Disneynature

Movie review of 'Bears' by Disneynature
It’s known that mama bears are very protective of their cubs, and that is the basis of the Disneynature movie “Bears.”  Maternal devotion and the fact that the first year of parenting is often the toughest are at the heart of the film. “Bears” is Disneynature’s latest installment in its documentary releases around Earth Day.... Read more »
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Printable Easter scavenger hunt clues

Printable Easter scavenger hunt clues
We usually do an egg hunt at Easter (and yes, we find usually find an errant egg around Flag Day, which is why we stick with plastic). This year, though, I’m going to have my tween do a scavenger hunt for her Easter basket. You can structure your hunt any number of ways, be it... Read more »