Dearest friends and family,
I hope this finds you and yours well. For many reasons which I don’t wish to recount here, we have been through some challenging times in 2020 and 2021. As you may recall, despite keeping Story Spark closed during 2020, I maintained and deepened our mission while giving back to the Amarillo community through the Story Spark Christmas Project. With your support and generosity, we were able to provide carefully curated gift sets which included a book and related play and educational items to over 60 children from low-income families in Amarillo.
This year through the generosity of the St. Andrew’s Episcopal School community, we have collected over 120 books to date, but now it’s time to play Santa and purchase all the play and educational items that will transform each book into a more meaningful and hands-on learning experience. My hope is that you will again support this project by giving any amount you can and by spreading the news to friends and contacts who may also be able to give at this time. Thank you for helping me spread peace, love, and books! The children, their families and their teachers are so very grateful.
Visit, donate, and share the GoFundMe Page today: https://gofund.me/fbc45243 or click on the red picture above.
With much love,
“Reading should not be presented to children as a chore, a duty. It should be offered as a gift.” -Kate DiCamillo, children’s author
“Play gives children a chance to practice what they are learning.” -Mr. Rogers
As a little girl, I remember my sisters and I tagging along occasionally in the summers as my Dad visited his classroom for various reasons we often paid no attention to. While he might be doing an inventory of equipment and compiling orders of beakers, burners, and other scientific tools, we would explore the old and often empty building, climb up and down what we thought were dramatic staircases, play school, draw on the chalkboards, etc. My memories are foggy but happy ones.
Continue reading 3 Little Pigs, Play, and a Streetsweeper
Remind me next time not to make such a big list, but seriously, all 15 of these play materials are worth the money and space because they lead to some rich and deep play that spans various ages, stages, and interests. So today, I will finally share more “totally-worth-the-space-and-money” play items on my list!
It’s been a good while, so first of all, yes, we are alive!!! Continue reading Part 3 of Worthwhile Toys for the Early Years
I shared the first part of this list 15 Worthwhile Toys for the Early Years a few weeks back, because the toy industry, children’s movies/TV and related products, Pottery Barn Kids, Target (both of which I LOVE!), educational products, etc. can be SO damn cute and manipulative, much like our little ones… and then bam! Or “CRUNCH!” Or “OW!” You’ve stepped on one of thousands of toys or supplies… no matter how much your munchkins actually help put them all away.
Continue reading Part 2 of Worthwhile Toys for the Early Years
If you’re like me, you like keeping money in your pocket/bank, you don’t like your house being overrun by toys, and basically you hate wasting time and money on anything your children will outgrow or lose interest in within the lifespan of a housefly. (They don’t live long folks.)
As the twins (now 1 years old!) have really begun playing more independently, jointly, and with things, I’ve lost myself in thought about toys. I’ve been pretty picky about toys, so thankfully, I am fairly happy with the amount of and type of toys in my house, for the most part. But let’s face it: not all toys are created equally. Some toys stand the test of time and parent/teacher sanity, and some don’t.
Continue reading 15 Worthwhile Toys for the Early Years