BOOK REVIEW: THE COLORS OF US

colors of us

Title: The Colors of Us

Written and Illustrated by: Karen Katz

Good For: Kids ages 3-6

The Skinny: Lena, with the help of her mother, an artist, learns there are different  shades of brown, which she sees while on a walk through her neighborhood. Continue reading “BOOK REVIEW: THE COLORS OF US”

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MASURU EMOTO’S RICE EXPERIMENT: THE EFFECTS OF POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE ENERGY (VIDEO)

I firmly believe in the effects of positive and negative energy, as well as the Law of Attraction and the power of one’s energy field.

I came across this amazing video that shows the effects of positive and negative energy on something as simple as rice.

The video also compares this experiment to the treatment of children (as well as others around us) and that how we speak to them can make or break their spirit. Take a look! I dare you NOT to be amazed.

SHE AIN’T SLOW, SHE’S MY (TALL) DAUGHTER

Back in the day when yours truly was just getting comfortable in my own skin circa the mid-90s, I realized something which would soon exasperate me to no end, but which I found pretty cool at the time: I was taller than every other girl in my class and as tall or taller than some of the boys.

I thought it would keep boys from picking on me, but instead some of them (the runts) were intimidated by me. All the girls secretly envied me, telling me wistfully that I could be a runway model, given my height and (stick) figure.


WHAT THEY DIDN’T KNOW ABOUT WAS THE TEARFUL FRUSTRATION OF A TEENAGE GIRL WHO WANTED TO LOOK CUTE IN CLOTHES THAT WERE ALWAYS TOO SHORT EVERYWHERE—SLEEVES, LEGS—OR HUNG LIKE A TENT WHEN GOING UP A SIZE.


What they didn’t know about was the tearful frustration of a teenage girl who wanted to look cute in clothes that were always too short everywhere—sleeves, legs—or hung like a tent when going up a size. It was incorrectly assumed that I must be an expert at basketball and volleyball, but when the cat was out of the bag, I would hang my head in shame.

Continue reading “SHE AIN’T SLOW, SHE’S MY (TALL) DAUGHTER”

BEAUTY AND THE TWEETS

Miss New York, Nina Davuluri wins the Miss America pageant / Jezebel [photo]
Miss New York Nina Davuluri wins the Miss America pageant / Jezebel [photo]
I can’t remember the last time I watched the Miss America pageant. As a child I used to lay on the floor in front of the TV, chin in my hands, watching excitedly as the 53 women vied for the coveted bejeweled crown.

Then somewhere between childhood innocence and adolescent anger, the feminist in me reared its ugly head and flatly refused to watch any of these so-called beauty contests. (Disclaimer: I still have interest in Miss Universe, as I find it fascinating to see all the beautiful people from all parts of the world.)

So it came as no surprise that, last week, when a preview for this year’s competition appeared on TV, I laughed to myself and promised I wouldn’t watch—again. I also laughed because I saw that Chris Harrison (of The Bachelor fame) would be co-hosting. To be fair, I do watch The Bachelor/Bachelorette, even though we have a nickname for Chris (Hint: It starts with “P” and rhymes with “wimp”).

But I digress.

What did come as a surprise, however, was reading yesterday in the news (I realize I must be the last to know) that an Indian-American contestant had won the title.

Continue reading “BEAUTY AND THE TWEETS”

WHY MY DAUGHTER WON’T BE GETTING A TABLET THIS CHRISTMAS…OR THE NEXT

My daughter Pumpkin loves to play with the junk mail. The other day she picked up a Costco coupon book, excitedly pointing out products familiar to her–Cheerios, diapers, juice. As I nodded enthusiastically, she suddenly pointed to a corner of the book and shrieked, “Dot com! It’s-a dot com!” Sure enough, she was referring to Costco’s website.

To this day, I still don’t know how she learned that.

Once, as I finished reading her a story, I closed the back cover while announcing, “The end!”

“Again!” she squealed. She leaned forward and tapped the center of the front cover repeatedly. “Again, again!”

She was doing the same thing she usually does when she wants to replay a video on my phone.

I felt kind of bad, to be honest.

Speaking of phones, the only kind she has really seen are touchscreen smartphones. I still refuse to buy a tablet so she can have the genuine experience of flipping through pages of a real book instead of swiping across a screen.

While I’m eternally grateful there was no Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube when I was in high school, I wonder what social media or technology will be in place when she comes of age (hopefully none, but I guess I’m asking for the moon). Meanwhile, there is a special space reserved in a museum somewhere for the future acquisition of my laptop and phone.

Oh well…technology marches on!

 

TRAVEL GUIDE: 3 TIPS FOR TAKING YOUR KIDS TO THE SAN FRANCISCO ZOO

We took our girls to the San Francisco Zoo, excited to point out real animals to Pumpkin, animals she had only thus far seen in My Big Book of Animals.

Despite some inconveniences, such as difficult parking, small and ill-placed exhibit signage and a very hectic food court, my girls had a fun time on their first visit to the zoo.

If you are planning a visit to the San Francisco Zoo, here are some things to keep in mind:

come early

The parking lot fills up very fast on days with pleasant weather, and after that only paid valet parking is available if you want to park near the zoo entrance. Another reason to arrive at opening is to actually be able to see most of the animals. After about 12 noon, most of them are asleep or hiding after their midday meal.

Pick up a map

Maps are provided at the entrance and we consulted ours on more than one occasion to navigate the zoo. The signage is not clearly placed, and we went in circles a few times in order to find our way around.

Bring your own lunch

The Leaping Lemur Café is more of a zoo than the actual zoo! It’s structured like a food court, but all three counters are right next to each other causing a mess of a line, not to mention confusion. The food is way overpriced, the music blaring, and by the time you receive your tray and turn around, you would be lucky to find a place to sit, as the sitting area is very crowded. We did in fact grab a table as soon as another family had vacated it, but if I had known ahead of time how hectic it would be, I would’ve brought lunch instead. If you have little ones, I don’t think highchairs would be available either (I didn’t see any).

Overall, the grounds are very stroller-friendly, so no worries there. We did have fun posing and taking photos with the animals, and we definitely got our workout in for the day. Pumpkin enjoyed being outdoors, and although this zoo has no “effant” (elephant) she was excited to see a real live “ghee-affe” (giraffe)!