If you haven’t picked up the latest issue of PLAYGROUND, you should ASAP. This issue is full of “Artsy Fartsy” fun for families in Central Florida. Some of my favorite articles (besides the two I wrote) are “the alternate route” giving parents the low down on schooling options, “College Park… it’s just edgy” and of course the fashion spread.
I had the opportunity to experience and write a piece on Orlando Bellydance. A true alternative to the average kids athletic activity. I also immersed myself in the optional art classes the area has to offer for kids. There are just so many cool classes to choose from!
To read the full articles, go to PLAYGROUND’s website and download the electronic version. While you’re on the site, take a look at the calendar of upcoming events and sign up for a subscription. You know you want to!
Well what do ya know… It’s Foto Friday again. I’ve fallen slightly behind but the reason is good. Big news for The Mamma Mia Blog coming soon!
I don’t have much talent in the kitchen, but over the past four years, Mia has inspired me to do better. I’ve actually found that cooking is kind of fun. Yes, I said it! Anyway, I’ve had some great times cooking and baking together with Mia. Well, I call it cooking and baking and she calls it playing with food. Don’t get me wrong, we’ve made cookies solid as a bricks and a cake that had no center, but hey… we’ve had fun.
Here’s a super easy, and emotionally stimulating, recipe to try with your kids.
What you need: Whole grain pita, pizza sauce, mozzarella cheese, veggies to make faces
Mad Pizza Face
Happy Pizza Face
Chef Mia hard at work…
Check out more easy recipes to make with your kids at Family Fun
Posted on March 5, 2010
This lovely Foto Friday is dedicated to the newest addition in Mia’s arts and crafts collection, PlayFoam. I don’t mind getting messy every now and then, but the fact of the matter is that I live in a 1200 sq. ft. condo (I know, I continuously remind everyone of this.) Messes just seem bigger there. When I get a real house with a real driveway etc., I will blog about big messes in my big house.
This latest and greatest addition is an oldie but definitely a goody. You might have played with PlayFoam as a child, but seriously, this stuff is amazing. I totally forgot just how fun it is. Apparently my family (sans myself) might have a career waiting for them in PlayFoam sculpting. See last photo below. Holy PlayFoam master!
I am extremely excited to announce that the Orlando Repertory Theatre (The REP) will be presenting The Berenstain Bears On Stage: A Bear Country Musical February 27 through March 28. Gotta love the Berenstain Bears!
I’m even more excited to announce that you can win a family four pack from the Mamma Mia blog.
Stan and Jan Berenstain introduced the Berenstain Bears in their 1962 book The Big Honey Hunt. Throughout the last few decades, the Berenstain Bears have been seen in picture books, television shows, toys, and now, on the stage at our local REP.
Showtimes are Saturdays at 11 am and 4 pm and Sundays 2 pm and 5 pm through March 28.
To enter to win the family four pack to the show time of your choice*, email the REP with your contact info by clicking here. I’ll be announcing the winner of the tickets next Monday, March 1.
If you want more information on the show or to buy tickets visit The REP’s Web site or call 407.896.7665 ext. 1.
*Promo excludes showtimes on Saturday, March 20.
The big V-day was celebrated with lots of love (and food) this year… We ventured out for brunch at a new restaurant location, 310 Lakeside. The restaurant has actually been there for a year, and is literally next door to our building, but we had never been. Food and $3 brunch special sangrias were A.M.A.Z.I.N.G.
Next we journeyed across town to the Desert Lady on W Church Street. If you haven’t been to this oasis of sweets, you must go immediately. The atmosphere is calming and I imagine hours could go by while sipping coffee and you’d never know. Sort of like my old days at 3 for 1 happy hours. Anyway, I digress…. These photos will speak for themselves. (Click the Desert Lady link to get a glimpse of the place)
Or, purple monsters… For lack of better photo. Anyway, I’ve never seen the movie Mean Girls, but I can only imagine something similar to what I witnessed in high school. I was never a mean girl, but I witnessed bullying. I had my head unnecessarily shoved into a locker or two in my day. I turned out okay, I think. I certainly do not want my Mia shoving heads into lockers.
A mom from Mia’s school informed me the other day that the girls had formed some kind of “club” and they where periodically excluding girls from the group. Mean girls at age 3???
It wasn’t JUST Mia, but being part of that group is just as bad! I was in shock, and suddenly had that overwhelming feeling of… “Oh crap, I’m THAT mom whose child is going to act totally different when she steps out of the house.”
As I began to research, it seems that I should have caught onto the signs that this “club” thing was coming. Back six months ago, Mia was on an “Okay then I won’t be your friend” kick. To me, to her dad, even to the cat… yes, she was threatening her friendship with our cat.
Good news… There are many ways to nip this in the bud. I still have time to straighten out my closeted mean girl and so do you.
Here are some tips from the experts, aka not me:
- Make sure your preschooler gets plenty of opportunities to make their own choices and feel powerful in their life. Much like a toddler learning the power of ”no,” preschoolers abuse social exclusion more if that’s the only time they get to feel powerful.
- Help the child identify the cue they missed or mistake they made, by asking something like: “How would you feel if Emma and Jane didn’t want you to play on the tire swing with them?” Instead of lecturing with the word “should,” offer options the child “could” have taken in the moment.
- Sensitize your kiddo to other people’s experience by constantly commenting on how others feel so they see things from other people’s viewpoints. Make comments like… “Look, that boy is crying. I wonder why?” or “Laura seemed so happy when you hugged her.” It’s crucial that children develop this skill, not just so they turn out nice, but because reading the social cues of others is the only way to function in a complicated social world.
- Create an imaginary but similar scenario where the child can make the right choice. For example, you could say, “If you and Danielle were playing in the sandbox and Samantha wanted to play too, what would you say?”
I can’t believe I’m that much of a slacker… It is yet another Foto Friday and I haven’t even posted in between. I’m slipping. In my defense, it’s been a rough week on both the home front and the work front. We are trying to sell our condo and purchase a new home in a crap snap economy. Anyway, I promise to do better. I mean it.
Here are a few photos or fotos as we like to call them on Friday’s on the Mamma Mia blog. Mia and I have been big fans of the Sea World annual pass (Play for a day come back all year) for almost four years now. Here are two snapshots from our recent trip to Sea World.
I wrote awhile ago about a Central Florida book store that I considered to be one of my “happy places.” I’ve now added another locale to my list of “happy places.”
Mia and I take ballet on Saturday mornings at the Russian Ballet of Orlando. I take an adult class in the studio next to her little ballerina class. Fun stuff. It so happens that the studio is directly across the street from the Drunken Monkey Coffee Bar.
Mia loves this place mostly because she likes to call me a Funky Monkey, but also because it’s a cool atmosphere and the food/drinks are awesome. There’s a variety of vegan and non-vegan breakfast and lunch foods and yummy coffee and juice drinks. Come join us on Saturday!
Ditch the Dora Valentine cards this year and let Erica Clements, Orlando Photographer create an original Valentine from your child.
Erica has a few Valentine’s mini-sessions left for this weekend (Saturday, January 30 and Sunday, January 31) that include:
- 15 minute studio session
- Online ordering gallery
- 8X10 print
- Set of 50 cards and envelopes
- $37.50 per additional child, but includes an additional pack of cards
The package price is $75. And, of course there’s a special deal for Mamma Mia readers… You will receive an additional 10% off any prints you order outside of the Valentine’s Day mini session package.
Space is extremely limited so email Erica ASAP.
I am the lucky girl who received a fancy shmancy Cannon Rebel for Christmas. As of today, I declare Fridays on the Mamma Mia blog, Foto Friday. Follow my journey as I master the Cannon Rebel and step out of full auto mode. I allowed Mia to caption her photos. Good stuff.
(Oh, and if you are just visiting the blog to get a free subscription to PLAYGROUND Mag and don’t really care about me and my Foto Friday… scroll down to the next post for details.)
“I like to make people laugh, right?”
“I sing and I dance A LOT because it makes me happy.”
“Mom, I think I’m dreaming in this one”