Walking With Dinosaurs

Walking with Dinosaurs Do you love dinosaurs? Have a dino-loving little one? You'll want to check out Walking With Dinosaurs, on now at the Canadian Tire Center. This show is an arena spectacular with 20 life-sized dinosaurs including the Tyrannosaurus Rex!

I was able to meet the baby T-Rex at an event last week and I can tell you that it was pretty awesome, and he only comes up to his mama's waist. I can't even imagine seeing the big dinosaurs. Not only that, at the show you get to see them move, hear them roar, and learn things along the way.

Baby T-Rex from Walking with Dinosaurs

This show is sure to be amazing, though probably not suitable for all children. My 3-year-old was petrified of Baby T, but my 4-year-old was excited. I would love to know if you're planning to go and what you thought of the show!

 

You can buy tickets on the Walking With Dinosaurs website. The showtimes are:

Thursday, August 21 at 7 pm

Friday, August 22 at 7 pm

Saturday, August 23 at 11 am, 3 pm, and 7 pm

Sunday, August 24 at 11am and 3pm

 

A big thank you to the organizers and evenko for the opportunity to attend the media preview and meet Baby T.

Keeping the kids awake during road trips

Keeping kids entertained on drivesWhen I was young and when we went on road trips, we had to walk barefoot uphill both ways in the snow. Wait.  I mean, we had to entertain ourselves with nothing more than the radio to listen to and the other passengers to entertain us. (But. But.  I don't LIKE THAT SONG!) I've always gotten sick really easily if I read or wrote or coloured in the car, so when I was a kid, when were weren't listening to the limited radio stations available to us (and I swear, I feel like our first car didn't even HAVE a radio) we were singing songs and playing games. We have a lot more options at hand for the kids on road trips now.  For one, they don't get car sick (knock on wood) so they colour and write stories and read books.  We also have the plethora of electronics we throw into the back to keep them entertained.  But sometimes we kick it  old school when we're in the car, and it reminds us how much fun car games can be. We often pull out the car games in moments of desperation - like when they're about to fall asleep with only an hour left to go.  That nap you know will make everything quiet in the car/van but if they sleep they'll be up until midnight.  And you don't want them up until midnight!!

20 questions

It's an oldie but a goodie.  Think of something and let people ask you yes, no, or sometimes questions until they guess what you're thinking of (or you hit 20 questions.) Warning.  It isn't a super easy concept for the 5 and under crowd to grasp. Have you tried playing 20 questions with 7 and 5 year olds? It's hilarious!  And possibly a bit frustrating if you let it get to you. Daddy "Is it an animal?" 7 year old "yes" Mommy "Does it have fur?" 7 year old "yes" 5 year old "Is it a house?" Mommy "We already said it was a furry animal" 5 year old "Oh right! Is it a furry cloud with feet?" snicker snicker snicker. 7 year old giggling "No!" Other 5 year old "Is it a house?"

Story-telling game

This is where one person starts a story and each person gets to add a sentence to the story.  This goes well as long as you have the following rule:  Your sentence cannot be "and then he died. The End."  Without that rule, there is fighting.  With that rule, things go quite smoothly as we move through lands of princesses, dragons and monsters. We also play license plate games, and find all the letters of the alphabet games.  Here is a whole list of games to play in the car, many of which we've tried and done quite successfully. How about you?  What games do your kids like to play in the car?

I said "no" and the world didn't end

I'm a Yes Person. How awesome are we? Ask us anything - anything at all - and we will most likely say Yes. Can you give me a lift to my appointment?  YES!

Are you free to babysit my dog? YES!

Do you have $20 to donate to my charity? YES!

We need extra volunteers in the classroom - can you do it? YES!

Instead of YES, how about "I'm just not sure!"

Instead of YES, how about "I'm just not sure!"

Never mind that the appointment is across town. Never mind that I have my own dog and two young children to take care of. Never mind that I've already donated hundreds of dollars to other charities this year. And never mind that I work three jobs and just don't have the hours to volunteer in the classroom. The answer is always - YES!

But here's the problem with Yes People. We say YES so often that we actually end up saying NO. But we say NO by cancelling at the last minute, forgetting appointments and social dates, or doing a half-assed job. The "no" doesn't come from an authentic place of self-knowledge and plain old common sense; it comes from a place of fear - fear of failure, fear that people will be disappointed in me, and fear that I will never be good enough.

And I've realized that by being a YES person, I also miss out on a lot of opportunities to give back in meaningful ways, because I tell myself I just don't have the time. For example, I've never donated blood. Can you believe it? Something so simple, and yet I give myself permission to be "too busy" for this life-saving gesture that takes very little time to do.

The lesson I'm teaching my kids when I say YES all the time is simple:

I don't have boundaries. I can't recognize when I've stretched myself so thin that I'll soon snap like a rubber band.

It's time for a NO revolution. Or - maybe a more conscious and mindful use of the word YES. Because although YES can be generous, loving and kind, NO deserves a whole lotta respect.

Have you practiced saying NO lately?

We could be dancing

My kid is a mover. She rarely slows down, and she loves to dance, but she didn't like the one ballet class we tried because it was too slow for her. I heard about Salsa Babies when she was little but I never took the class. When I found out Dancing Mama offers a class called Zumbini for older kids and a parent I signed us up right away. Even better: The class I signed us up for is at Brinkeetos and we can stay to play afterwards.

I think my daughter may be a bit old for the class. We would dance and then sit for a song, and the slowing down was hard for her, but once our teacher Dani brought out some instruments she was happy.

IMG_9891

 

And then she put bells around her wrists and ankles and danced around and was in total heaven.

Dani was great with the kids and it certainly gave my daughter some good exercise. I know I was sweating by the end of our hour.

IMG_9912

 

My daughter is four, and I think the class is more suited to younger kids, but if you have a child that loves to bounce around and dance to music I recommend it.

Hoppy Easter and Pink Carrots!

I love trying out Pinterest-type crafts and recipes, but they never seem to turn out the same. Probably just a sign that I'll never be a Martha Stewart.

carrots...aka Pink Blobs

carrots...aka Pink Blobs

These strawberries dipped in chocolate are supposed to look like carrots. But I couldn't find orange wafers at Bulk Barn, so just decided to mix red and yellow....which makes pink, apparently.

Instructions:

  • Melt chocolate: we use a stainless steel bowl inside a pot of hot water, as I don't own a double boiler
  • dip strawberries into melted chocolate and place on a sheet of parchment paper
  • Use a spoon to drizzle extra chocolate over the top
  • Ask your kids what they look like, and try not to cry when they say "flowers!"

The good news is that they taste egg-cellent!

Happy Easter from one #Pinterestfail Mom to another.

(to try out these "carrots" yourself, check out this link from the Marilyn Denis Show - lots of fantastic ideas!)