Becoming Jesse – Celebrating The Everyday Magic Of Childhood Review

Becoming Jesse As you know, I’m always delighted to have a fan of my blog get in touch with me about a review. This time, it was a (book review) about childhood, magic and grandmothers. Tom McCandless; (the author’s spouse), was kind enough to email me and invite me to do the review. At the end of his emails was a very small phrase that read, “Light Onthat had me guessing <3

I’ll tell you about the author of this wonderful novel in just a bit. In the meantime, keep the phrase I told you about (above) in your mind as I begin to tell you about Becoming Jesse. 😉

I was so excited when I finally had the package and opened it. I love doing book reviews. Although, this was (sort of) a long book. (317 pages to be exact). I let myself go into a little bit of an overwhelm mode of how I was going to have the time to actually read it. Well, let me tell you that after I dove into it, I MADE TIME to read because I literally could not put it down. LOL

 

Becoming Jesse Was That Good!!

 

We've become a plugged world with our eyes and ears glued to our iPhones, tablets, or what have we; (me included). Why not take a refreshing day from it all and indulge in this delightful gem of a book?!

 

Patsie McCandless

Celebrating The Everyday Magic Of Childhood ~~ Becoming Jesse, was fictionally set in New York City in the 1950s. This charming story borders on five main characters; a six-year-old, orphaned, shiner boy named Jesse, his grandmother Dearie, Billy, Conor, and Jessica.

Early on, determined Jesse set out on a journey of questions. A journey with turns, and sometimes, disappointment. Charm, warmth, Light, thrill-digging imagination, love, kindness and hope takes place as this little boy embraces the unknown.

Becoming Jesse

Jesse follows his grandmother’s life lessons and (Rule Of Tongue) with a loving attitude as the story unfolds. Through sparklers, circles and spirals, mourning, and the spirit of Christmas; and (with) the help of Dearie, he surprises himself with a wonderful, childhood magic and a message-filled guiding light for him AND for everyone around him.

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This book of fiction is not ONLY for grandmothers; but for everyone that reads it. It is a true stepping stone on how to go about life positively and to deal with today’s hardships. All through a 6-year-old boy.
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Not long after production, Becoming Jesse was found on the best seller list and currently has a five-star rating on Amazon.

 

Becoming Jesse

About The Author: Patsie McCandless successfully wrote and self-published a beautiful, fictional storybook/novel at the age of 70. Patsie is also an award-winning artist and musical composer. In the media, she is featured in TEDx Talk, Saving The Magic of Childhood that focuses on cell phone addiction in children and provides tips on rising above it. Patsie McCandless has also been featured on Positive Talk Radio — Healthy Life.net. (where positive people and radio unite); among other media.

You can find Patsie’s exquisite art on her YouTube Channel and subscribe HERE

You can also find out more about Patsie HERE

Quoted Content From The Book

A snow fall, much like your life, is made up of billions upon billions of glitters

Love and hope often take pleasure in each other

Mad unplugs your energy, your light

Humor and Fun lift the corners of your mouth as they lift the corners of your heart

A bend in a road is never the end of the road, unless you don’t make the turn

You will surely come to know what the above (5) sentences mean if you read the book. <3

 

A Thanksgiving Reading From Patsie

I’ll leave you with one final thought today…

Before You Speak, Let Your Words Pass Through Three Remarkable Gates:

Is it kind? ~~ Is it true? ~~ Is it necessary? (K-T-N)

 

Thank you for reading! =)

A Grandma’s Tips for Starting Life on Your Own for the First Time

My entire life, my grandmother told me I could do whatever I set my mind to. Tori Bowie ~~ Via Brainy Quotes

Those of you who are young and about to begin the process of building your own life might be experiencing a wide array of emotions right now. In some ways, there is nothing more thrilling than carving your own path through life; in other ways, it’s one of the most terrifying processes you’ll ever take part in. In trying to find your footing, it’s normal to find yourself feeling lost, confused, or discouraged.

 

 

To help you make your way, here are some tips from folks who have had a few decades’ experience with living independent lives as adults.

Build Lifelong Skills to Properly Take Care of Yourself

While you may have built some of these skills (like doing your laundry and cooking basic meals) before moving out of your family home, it’s important that you dedicate some of your time to building other skills that you’ll use for the rest of your adult life. Make it a priority to become good at budgeting; learn how to alter or fix your torn or ill-fitting clothing; teach yourself how to do basic repairs around your home so you don’t have to call your landlord or shell out money for a professional every time something goes wrong. Reach out to people in your life who have skills you don’t, and ask them to teach you. You may not need all of these skills every day while living on your own, but you’ll be immensely grateful for the knowledge if and when problems should arise.

Take Your Finances Seriously

When you get your first full-time job, it might seem like you have more money than you know what to do with. It can feel all too easy to throw a little more cash toward buying new clothes, decorations for your apartment, meals out at restaurants, or tickets to the movies. But if you aren’t careful, and if you don’t allocate your funds properly, those little purchases can add up quickly, and you might find yourself surrounded by all of fun new things you bought as well as a small mountain of debt.

Make sure you’re taking care of your financial necessities first, like contributing to your savings, paying your monthly bills, and purchasing the things you actually need before any of your paycheck goes toward those fun purchases. You should also put a portion of your income each month toward reducing any outstanding debt, like credit card payments, paying off your student loans and, if necessary, refinancing those loans to lower the monthly cost.

Sure, building a financial cushion and consolidating your debt is a bit less exciting than buying Taylor Swift tickets, but practicing responsibility with your money is an essential part of being an adult and building a sustainable future for yourself.

Have Patience

When you’re young, it’s normal to want your life as an adult to begin immediately, to feel as though everything ought to fall into place perfectly and all at once. Unfortunately, as nice as that would be,
that is rarely how life works. It might take more time than you would like to get the apartment you want, to gain momentum in your career, or to meet the person with whom you want to spend the rest of your life, and that’s okay. While the world we’re living in now is an expectant one, and while people often demand instant gratification, real life doesn’t always meet our expectations or demands.

Life is often chaotic, unpredictable, and unfair, but there is always an opportunity to learn a lesson from your experiences, and every experience brings you one step closer to where you’re ultimately meant to be.

Believe in Yourself

As the Liberace quote goes, “Nobody will believe in you unless you believe in yourself.” And it’s true! You are your own best cheerleader and your own best advocate– to build yourself up in the eyes of others, you need to build confidence from within and make others see the talented, intelligent, self-assured individual that you are.

You have skills and knowledge to offer, and you need to carry yourself in a way that, without arrogance, relays that information to the people you interact with both personally and professionally. You deserve to take up space in this world, and you deserve to succeed in that space. Internalize those facts, and own them.

With hard work, determination, and persistence, you can do whatever you set your mind to!

Do What Makes YOU Happy

This, along with believing in yourself, is arguably the most important thing to keep in mind as you venture into the world on your own. You are your only true lifelong companion, so it’s essential that you
make your own happiness a priority, especially while you’re first starting to build your life.

Having the skills and the self-reliance to keep yourself alive is important, but so is making sure you’re actually living. Pursue your passions, whether as a hobby or a career; sing and dance as often as possible; take a road trip with your favorite people; eat chocolate every day, — do whatever you can, whenever you can, to cultivate joy. You’re young, so make the most of your youth, but don’t ever fully grow up (after all, you’re only as old as you behave).

Leave plenty of room in your world for silliness and laughter– the world is often a dark and serious place, and you must never allow that to consume your view.

Good luck starting out, and enjoy the ride!

Elder Education: The Benefits of Earning a Degree as a Senior

The habit of learning is one that adults often foster in children, but it can also be a good plan for healthy living throughout your life.

Individuals who tackle new educational opportunities maintain their zest for life and enjoy better health, as well as a more satisfying social life. If you are considering taking on pursuing an associates degree or other goal in your later years, you are likely to benefit in a number of ways from your endeavor.

Intellectual Stimulation

For those who have retired from their usual field of work, the change of pace and lack of mental challenges can pose a problem. These individuals are often used to constant interactions with a team of co-workers and a wealth of problem-solving opportunities offered by an average workday. Pursing new educational opportunities can be an appropriate remedy for post-retirement boredom and can provide topics to aid in social interactions. Studies show that the earlier you retire, the more likely you are to experience cognitive decline because of lack of stimulation.

Seniors often become more socially isolated after retirement and often have fewer opportunities to learn new subjects and skills. This lack of intellectual stimulation can lead to memory problems and slower cognitive function. New learning helps to counteract this effect.


Greater Ability to Connect with Young People and the Wider World

Often, retired individuals become disconnected from what’s going on in the wider community, and they may find it more difficult to engage with grandchildren and other younger people in society. The knowledge and information provided by lifelong learning allows older people a greater understanding of the experiences of young people and the wider world. This ability not only provides mental stimulation, but also a better connection to younger family members and others.

Enhanced Access to Work Opportunities

If you are a senior who must, or prefers to, keep working after the age of 65, demonstrating your ability to acquire new skills and compete intellectually will be seen as a recommendation for job opportunities you may wish to pursue. Acquiring an associates degree in a specific area of study can be key to allowing you to enter a new field that interests you.

Better Physical Health

Individuals who remain intellectually engaged appear to enjoy better physical health, as well as having improved mental acuity and memory. This result appears to come from the mental activity causing individuals to get up and engage to pursue their interests. So exercising your mind also helps to exercise your body, with all the health benefits that normally accrue from such activity.

You Can Take Advantage of Free or Low-Cost Programs

Your desire to continue learning in your later years can also qualify you for a number of free or low-cost courses that are available in many communities across the country.

These programs have become available as greater understanding of the benefits of lifelong learning for seniors become better known.

These programs can help you to begin or continue your studies, as well as bring you into other seniors who are also pursuing subjects that interest them.

Lifelong learning is not just a phrase for the young. It can be a way of thinking that helps you to gain greater quality of life throughout the years. If you have a curious mind, enjoy intellectual challenges and know how to apply yourself to a subject, you can continue your learning opportunities, regardless of your age.

Research the many avenues that are now available to help you explore new subjects and develop new skills. You will find that your academic pursuits enrich you both mentally and experientially.

* See More On Education Here

How to Make Sure Your Child Stays Safe and Has Fun While Away at Summer Camp

For kids, summer camp is a great opportunity to learn new skills, meet new people, experience exciting new things, and, most importantly, have a lot of fun. But sending your child away for a few weeks comes with its own risks. Here are some tips for ensuring your child stays safe while away at summer camp.

Know how to spot a bad summer camp

This first step to making sure your child has a fun, safe time away at camp is to send them to a good camp. Not all summer camps are created equal, and you should know some of the red flags associated with sub-quality camps.

The first red flag is that the camp doesn’t seem to have much of a presence. There is nobody talking about the camp online and no parents willing to sing its praises. Good camps will be known as just that – good camps. A low profile camp isn’t necessarily a bad one, but it should give you pause. Another red flag involves the staff. Ask about turnover. Does the camp lose and hire camp counselors every single season? Are there no long-term employees at the camp? This could signal that the camp is run poorly.

Lastly, any camp that is not completely open to you, the parent, is likely hiding something. If you get any pushback about wanting to visit the camp for a complete tour before giving them your money, or the camp has a closed-door policy where you must schedule an appointment to visit, be very wary.

Prepare them to make the right choices


One of the biggest fears the parents have when it comes to sending their child away to spend time with peers outside their supervision is that their child will get involved in drugs and alcohol. The best thing you can do is to talk to your child in a frank, honest, and non-judgmental way so that they at least have your voice in their head urging them to make good choices if the temptation arises.

Even if you, to some degree, accept that kids will experiment (we were all kids once!), you have to set firm boundaries. Teach them about the dangers of even experimenting with drugs and alcohol.

“Talking about ‘experimentation’ tends to be a very slippery slope. Parents have one idea about what it means, and kids have another idea about what it means. And some kids who get the idea that experimentation is okay will rationalize any kind of drinking that they’re doing as experimentation,” notes ChildMind.org. With this in mind, it’s best to just put a hardline “no” on any sort of experimentation.

Involve them in the camp-decision process

These days, there are hundreds of summer camp options. Many of them specialize in certain fields, activities, or sports. Talk to your child. If they have a strong a specific interest in something, a specialty camp may be the best choice. If not, a general interest camp is likely the way to go. You certainly don’t want to force your child to go to a camp that doesn’t interest them in order to try to force it on them.

Ask them if they are comfortable with a sleepaway camp or if they’d rather come home at night. You can certainly encourage them to be brave and face any fears they may harbor – but certainly don’t force the issue. That’s a recipe for an awful camp experience.

Summer camp can be a wonderful learning experience for your child. If you do the research into camps and take the time to talk to your child about making good choices, you can be assured they will have a fun, safe experience.

Photo Credit: Pixabay.com

Back-to-School Health Checklist

meandgrands Grandmas need to step it up and get in on the safety and well being of their grandkids just as much as their parents…in my opinion. 🙂

From: http://www.webmd.com/parenting/

By Jean Lawrence

 

 

* Make for sure your child’s emergency contact info is correct. I think this one should be on top of the list for sure. 😉

* Updated Shots – This is essential and must be high up on the list of priorities…always! When your child is in a school environment, there are all types of germs floating around. These shots are just a logical way to help prevent illnesses and diseases.

playball

* Eye Site – Regular eye exams are important to your child’s schooling, and also, home life.

* Teeth and Gums – If you want to keep your child healthy and infection-free, it’s a good idea to make them brush and floss daily. A nice smile is an awesome thing to have too! =)


* Make sure the nurse is aware of your child’s allergies and medications they are taking. Good Golly Miss Molly, this is important; much needless to say! 😮 lol

* Get enough sleep – When I was a young child, I remember going to bed every (school night) at 8:00 – 8:30. What’s the best time for the kiddos to get tucked into bed at night? What’s your opinion?

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* Nutrition – Remember, breakfast is the most important meal of the day =) In addition, is it top priority that your kids don’t consume fast food?

* Make for sure your child has transportation scheduled, wether it be a bus, you, or someone else to drive them to school and back. You never know these days what can happen and WHERE!

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

See What The Experts Have to Say

=)

You can read more @ http://www.webmd.com/parenting/features/back-to-school-health-checklist

Get Your Grandkids All Set For School This Year – Reasonably Priced

avonbacktoschool Awesome (back to school) gift ideas for your grandkids! Grandma, you know you LOVE to spoil.

The kiddos will be starting school in a couple of short weeks; depending on where you live, of course. Where has this year gone?! Whew! 😮

There are tons of gift ideas for your children, grandchildren, niece, or whoever. 🙂

 

 

 

Avon has it all; from
color changing umbrellas, backpacks, socks, bath and body items, watches, stationary, and much more
!

avoncolorchangingumbrellas

Did you know you could get a cool, sun, sand, style tote for FREE just for shopping with Avon??

All you have to do at checkout is
enter The Coupon CODE: [BEACH]

avonbeachtote


Make sure the kiddos in your life are all set for school this year….they deserve it and YOU love them!

avonallsetforschool

Get Full Details Here

my siggie on grandma blog

Silly, Frilly, Grandma Tillie – Book Review

grandmatillie2I was delighted to get an invite to review the charming book; Silly, Frilly Grandma Tillie. 🙂

Story Published By: Flashlight Press

Written By: Laurie Jacobs

 

 

 

What a clever way to entertain your grandchildren!

 

My first thought while reading the book….
 

#1 As a Grandma, I’m not that good of an actress lol
 

Second thought
 

#2 My grands would see right through me, they are incredibly smart. 🙂
 

However, I will be reading this book to them soon for sure!

 
The Story: A big smile contoured my face when I picked up the book and read it for the first time. This adorable story is about a grandmother who enjoys being silly with various characters to teach and entertain her granddaughters. My favorite character is “Madame Frilly Tillie!” She certainly makes bath time fun. Although, “Chef Silly Tillie” can make an awesome grilled cheese sandwich. 🙂

 

 

Silly, Frilly, Grandma Tillie

I promise, this story will warm your soul and never bore you; as it absorbed my attention to the very last page. It gave me a warm and fuzzy feeling inside! 🙂   

The Book Itself: I found it to be colorful, eyecatching with the vivid choice of graphics and a genuine, captivating story to share with ANY grandchild.   

Oh and, obviously, Grandma Tillie enjoys changing characters and entertaining MORE than knitting! =)    

Watch The Video Below

 

   
 

You can grab this book Here!
 
 

Copyright © Flashlight Press :: Laurie Jacobs:: Grandma’s Home Blogger Place :: All Rights Reserved 

 

Distributed By Independent Publishers Group

Munch Book Review AND Giveaway! 3 Books To Giveaway – US Only

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Fun and learning with children and grandchildren!

Review and Giveaway — Details, Rules and Prizes Below 🙂

First of all, I wanted to say; I genuinely loved the video, (BELOW)! It explains how unique Mathew is with his book creations. He creates his books with toddlers in mind when it comes to how strong they are so that kids can actually have fun with all the pull tabs! These books will not fall apart!

munch

The books are durable enough so “your child” can read, play and learn all while not having to worry about the books crumbling. Crucial element with these charming collection of fun and educational books.

Your Children Are Going To Love These!

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About The Author

Matthew Van Fleet has been writing and creating books for children for nearly 20 years. These books teach on numbers, shapes, colors, letters and much more! Mathew has sold more than 3 million copies of his books. He resides in New York with his family.

About The Book

This book lined the shelves of stores on August 27, 2013.

Munch is a book that was created for all young children…especially preschoolers. It charmingly explores the various mouths of animals and how they work, and also the sounds they make while eating. All the textures, tabs and movements make it so much fun for little ones! Matthew Van Fleet created this book to delightfully entertain and educate. Munch is perfect for teaching and interacting with those special children and grandchildren! The book WILL NOT disappoint. 🙂

I will personally be snatching a copy of all 3 books displayed above…Munch, Lick and Sniff for my two grandchilden!

Watch The Video!

Giveaway Details

Enter to win a prize pack (3 books) of Matthew Van Fleet’s creations ~~ Munch, Sniff and Lick ~~ All attractively packaged in a boxed set!

Requirement For a Successful Entry — You MUST complete #1

1. Follow this blog via Networked Blogs (middle column), and also by clicking on the subscribe button, (top right button). Then come back and make a comment with an intro.

Extra Entries

2. Briefly describe why your children (or grands) would enjoy this book via a (new) comment.

3. Tweet this giveaway by copy and pasting (the below text) on your Twitter timeline and then come back and make a new comment leaving the Twitter URL of your tweet:

“Enter to #win a prize pack (3 books) of Matthew Van Fleet’s Books – Munch, Sniff & Lick #childrensbooks http://bit.ly/14p1T9x”

4. Blog about this giveaway, and then come back and leave the URL of your blog post…via (new) comment

Important Note:

You can tweet and blog about this review and giveaway as many times as you like 😉

This Giveaway Contest Will Close On 10-18-13

Good Luck! 🙂

livelaughlove

Copyright © :: Matthew Van Fleet :: Grandma’s Home Blogger Place :: All Rights Reserved

The Basics That Children Learn In Grade School – Is Home Schooling a Better Option For Your Lifestyle?

school

When I started to write this blog post, I had no thoughts about discussing homeschooling. It just goes to show you that a blog post can change gears in a blink of an eye while writing. lol 😉

What does a child basically learn in the first few years of grade school? Is it worth it to send them off to a public school? Would your child be better off if they were homeschooled?

Homeschooling certainly has been in my thoughts while imagining our grandchildren starting a public school. A public school is not painting a pretty picture in my eyes; I can tell you that for sure! In today’s day and age, there is a growing population of children that ARE being homeschooled; and with very good reason.

This world has been turned up on its head with what’s been going on in the schools today…and not only schools. These type of crimes are going on all around us; literally everywhere! Kidnappings, shootings; and a whole slew of other things that I dare not mention here on the blog. It’s enough to make you vomit at the sheer thought of all the madness!

first day of school

In hindsight, I remember so vividly when my son got on the bus the first day of school. I just didn’t feel like a good Mom while walking back up our l-o-n-g drive way after the school bus drove away. By the time I got back up to the house, the tears were falling like the rain on a profoundly cloudy day.

I was so worried he would be bullied just like I was in school…I mean he was so little at tender, school-age. I wanted to drive our son to school myself.

However, he was thrilled with excitement about getting on that big yellow bus!

Of course, that’s all he saw was that big bus, and not the big picture that Mom was looking at! LOL

Life royally sucked that day! I felt bad as a parent and a Mom for not taking him (at least the first day). Life would certainly be a whole lot better if bullying was the ONLY thing to be concerned about today. Now, we worry if our children will be returned to us at the end of any given day!

Let’s Discuss What is Actually Taught in Grade School

* Motor Skills – Jump roping, hopscotch and throwing a ball around will for sure teach your child (for the most part) proper motor skills. I realize there is a bit more to it than the 3 things I’ve listed above; however, I think mommies and daddies could handle those tasks, and choose to homeschool.

* Socialization – In order to learn to socialize and get along with others, there needs to be other children around. That issue could be solved fairly easily with trade-off-neighborhood-homeschooling days. There comes a time in every person’s life where they’ll have to connect and make friends where Mom and Dad are not around. It’s called, “Independent Socialization.” Everyone needs to learn to get along with everyone, make friends, and just generally “make their own way” through life. It’s much better for everyone involved if each person learns proper socialization skills and also, properly apply them.

* Manners – Same thing with proper manners; this could be taught by mommies and daddies or perhaps an aunt or uncle, or even grandparents. It’s almost like “socialization;” however, people need to learn to be polite and peaceful with everyone they come in contact with, and not just with friends. Learn to say, “thank you” and “please,” and so forth.

*Self Esteem – Self esteem is taught from a very early age…from infancy even. When your baby takes his fist step or roles over, clap and praise them for it! Learn to praise your children for every single thing that they do or accomplish. Children need this praise and feedback from their parents or guardians in order to feel like they are acceptable and they are also a good child. They need this acceptance from YOU!

* Compassion for Others – We all learn to have respect and compassion for other human beings. Let’s face it, we all want to be treated fairly, correct? We should be taught to treat others like WE would like to be treated ourselves. We are all humans, and we all like to be liked, and treated with compassion.

Kindness is needed as well

For Example: If you saw someone out in the cold without a coat, wouldn’t you want that person to be warm? If you had a coat that you were not wearing, it’s a kind gesture to let them wear the coat. This is also just plain compassion for another person, other than ourselves.

* The Basics in Math and English – We all need to learn the basics of math and english. English is required so we can all communicate with each other without difficulty. If you come from a background where you don’t speak English, you should learn it. Same with other languages. If you surrounded yourself with people that only spoke Spanish, then yes…learn Spanish so you can communicate freely.

The basics of math is required in life as well; whether or not we don’t like to think so. Counting money and purchasing both involve math. Basic ingredients in a recipe even involves math to measure out each ingredient properly. We are always counting, aren’t we? How old we are, how much medicine we take, how many flowers to plant in our yards, how many pairs of jeans or socks we have, and even sheep we count when we can’t sleep. lol

So see; math IS definitely required with living. I think we’ve all heard this: “Why are we taught math in school? We don’t need it or use it.” We use math every single day of the week, so we all must learn at least the basics!

If you intend on homeschooling, it is highly suggested that you take courses in math and English; as when your children approach 5th or 6th grade, your children’s needs go beyond just the basics.

Unless you are a whiz at both. 😉

* History and Science – History and science are 2 other requirements for schooling and learning. I skimmed by with both! LOL…I wasn’t the least bit interested in either one. Taking courses with these is firmly a suggestion. However, if you are a genius as with math and English, then you have no worries. lol

* Physical Education – Yes, PE is a bit more than just motor skills that I’ve mentioned above. PE teaches us about being healthy and active while enjoying life. However, it could be and IS taught at home. In PE, we learn to play sports games. Soft ball, volleyball, soccer and even square dancing…which I hated! lol Oh and tumbling I hated that with the passion!

As parents or guardians, we all have the ability to teach at least the basics of all these elements to our children, (for the most part). However, if you are mentally impaired, of course that is the exception.

Homeschooling is indeed an invaluable option. It’s all a personal preference on how our lifestyles are and what we choose to be acceptable and doable. If you desire to homeschool your children, you have technology to thank for looking up all kinds of information and tutorials with teaching.

Of course, there is always the option of hiring a private teacher; again, personal preference. Your children WOULD be safer learning at home rather than in a public school. It’s a personal choice. A choice that more parents are considering as a safe way to educate their kids with peace of mind. 🙂

I would love to hear your thoughts and tips about homeschooling!

livelaughlove

Copyright © Tammy Embrich :: Grandma’s Home Blogger Place :: All Rights Reserved

Planning a Daytrip With Your Grandkids: How to Choose a Museum

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Some Good Grandparenting Tips

When you’ve got the grandkids for the weekend, you want to spend quality time with them, and taking them to a museum is a great way to do that. But not all museums were designed with kids in mind – pick the wrong one, and you could have some grouchy grandchildren.
Following is some advice about how to choose a museum your grandchildren will enjoy visiting.

Understand their interests

Children explore their world with their hands, so find a museum that offers hands-on activities. And remember that children of different ages will be interested in different things. For example, the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago has a hands-on fabrication lab – the “Wanger Family Fab Lab” that offers different workshops to appeal to different age groups. Whereas teens enjoy the 60-minute 3D printing workshop, 8-year-olds are probably better suited to the 20-minute sticker-design course.

Static History vs. Living History

Museums can help children learn about history, but only if information is presented in a way that appeals to kids. Which would your grandchildren find more interesting: A butter churn, with a sign that describes how butter used to be made, or an actor dressed in colonial attire, using the butter churn and explaining how it works? Children will almost always be more interested in a living history museum than a history museum that features stationary objects behind glass windows. And at sites like the Chickasaw Cultural Center in Oklahoma, or the Pioneer Arizona Living History Museum, children can wander through re-creations of authentic old villages.

Best Bet: Children’s Museums

You can find museums across the United States that were designed specifically for children. Characterized by colorful, wide open spaces and plenty of hands-on experiences, children’s museums can keep kids entertained for hours. Some of these museums have so much to offer, they can’t be adequately explored in a single day, but they make great destinations for weekend excursions.

Regularly ranking among the top museums in the U.S. – and by far the largest – the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis has a dinosaur exhibit called “The Dinosphere,” that allows kids to participate in fossil digs and see full-scale replicas of dinosaurs. You’d definitely need two days to cover the Dinosphere and the rest of the museum.

Plan Together

You may be perfectly content to stroll the halls of a museum for hours on end, but kids have shorter attention spans – and shorter legs – so you’ll need to plan your trip to accommodate them.

Once you’ve found a museum to take your grandchildren to, ask them to help you plan the trip. You can look at the museum’s website together and determine what exhibits they’d like to see, or what activities they’d like to do.

When you plan in advance, you’re less likely to get tangled up in fussy debates at the museum about how to spend your time. As you plan, look for nearby eateries where you can take the grandkids for lunch. (Many museums have cafes, but they tend to be a little pricy).

Finally, remember that everyone – yourself included – should wear comfortable walking shoes, because nothing ruins a day at the museum quite like aching or blistered feet!

Danielle has visited many museums throughout the U.S. that have helped her learn more about the country and its past – from the unconquered and unconquerable people of the Chickasaw Nation, to the evolution of NASA’s space program.