Wednesday, July 28, 2010

A Shot (of kindness) In The Arm

this is required watching. you will be so happy you did.

i am the world's biggest fan of amy krouse rosenthal, author of amazing children's books, i'm sure you have a few on your shelf, (my favorite is "LITTLE HOOT"). she always has something very smart and meaningful to say... and do.

read more of her greatness here.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The Chill of the Spill

as if our planet weren't already in enough trouble, you and your children have seen the devastating effects of the gulf coast bp oil spill. there is much to be done to restore it to a healthy ecosystem.

here is an easy 1 minute activity to do:
log on to with your family. each of you can type in your name signing the petition to let president obama know that the entire country is counting on the government to fix this.

as they say on their site, "do it for the sandcastles, do it for the pelicans, do it for the oysters..."

the lesson: we ALL have a voice, and it has POWER. talk to your kids about the responsibility that comes with that power; standing up for what is right, what you believe and protecting those who can not protect themselves (in this case, the oysters).

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Acme Library - Kids Make It Better

here is a fun book to do with your kids (or let them do it themselves).

a "write-in, draw-in journal", KIDS MAKE IT BETTER asks it's readers questions and gives them the space to fill in answers. questions like,

"how would you get people to stop fighting?"
"what would you do to help animals who have no place to sleep?"
"what would you do to get more people to share?"

it's a great thinking activity that is "others oriented" and perfect for summer; on a plane, in the car or sitting on the grass under a tree.

Monday, June 28, 2010


my beautiful and wise cousin, carolyn, sent me this quote which i wanted to share with you all.

"i truly believe it is one of the greatest gifts we teach our children to show them through actions that they can make a positive difference in the lives of others" - sandra magsamen

this summer keep your families busy doing just that.

scroll the (over 100) activities listed on the website. i know that my boys and i will be; planting an organic garden, having a canned food drive and baking dog biscuits for the rescue shelter - no name just a few.

happy summer.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Call of the Wild

so when the temp gets super high and you have "park"ed yourselves out, chill out inside in front of the computer with your kids and check out NOAH WILD.

"Noah Wild is a movement dedicated to the idea that kids can truly make a difference by saving animals & the places they live."

noah is an animated young boy who loves animals. the site offers info (a hippo's lips are 2 feet wide) and links to other animal-centric sites. it has video, cartoons and merch. the products they sell give money back to animal loving non profits and the buyer (your child) gets to chose the cause.

here is a link:

the lesson: supporting animals is an easy way for kids to feel the power of helping others.

*** added bonus: you get a break from pushing them on the swings and can sit down for this family activity.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Emergency Kit

just in time to save the world comes the (why didn't i think of it) adorable WORLD REPAIR KIT. "unleashing the superhero in every kid, the protectors, the fixers, the champions of good", this box of altruism comes with a guidebook, activity passport and stickers.

it's a fantastic gift item for kids ages 8 and up, and, although my kids have simply looked at theirs in it's beautiful packaging, perhaps your child will rip it open and start their call to action.

buy it here for $24.95

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Signed Sealed and Delivered

here is an amazing and totally easy family project that you can do immediately. in fact your kids (age depending) might even be able to do most of this without you.

1. grab an empty shopping bag.
2. clean out your pantry of canned or boxed food you won't eat.
3. leave the (now full) bag next to your mailbox this saturday and your mail carrier will pick it up for you.

the united states postal service is running the STAMP OUT HUNGER program for every community nationwide. they will get this food to the local food bank and help countless people.

here is a link for more details:

the lesson: talking to kids about others who might not have enough food is an intense topic. know your child and what he/ she is capable of hearing/ understanding and think about how to share this information without scaring them. sometimes it's enough to say, "we have a lot and some families don't".

***added bonus: those oreos will no longer be there to mock you as you stare at them each morning while wearing yoga pants.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Acme Holiday - Earth Day

happy earth day! enjoy this precious video from our friends at tiny revolutionary.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Acme Library - Girls Gone Green

perfect earth day reading for young boys AND girls alike. this awesome book has projects FOR KIDS BY KIDS that help the environment.

to buy this book, see ACME LIBRARY on the right.
(this only works of you are on the acme sharing website)

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

nothing "goodie" about it

call me a scrooge but i have a problem with "goodie bags". the sentiment is there and i appreciate that; you go to a birthday party, bring a gift, have fun, eat cake, play with friends and your child leaves with a party favor.

these days we have been to a lot of wonderfully loving parties and walked out with a cellophane bag, colored or clear, with what my husband calls "EARTH GARBAGE". you know what this is without me even having to explain. the tiny plastic toys that hold your child's interest half way home and then end up on the floor of the backseat. tiny stickers, pencils, plastic rings, whistles - the list is long.

in honor of earth day this month, i challenge you to find a more useful and creative gift for your guests. the price point should remain the same, but take some time and scour your farmer's markets for local artisans making toys, trinkets or whatnots that might be more substantial. if you don't have the time to be creative, then may i suggest an edible favor? our children (along with the earth) will not miss the garbage and your money will be better spent.

*may i reccomend the handknit finger puppets at $2.60 each or the wooden kazoos for $2.99?
or another shopping spot with more is

rant over, resume pleasantries. happy happy smile smile.

Friday, March 12, 2010


i was really moved by the FALLING WHISTLES website. it's movie and mission are so powerful. help bring light to the DRC and the young boys who are forced to go to war before they can even hold up a weapon.

purchase a whistle for $30 and know that you are helping to fund a movement to start the conversation for change in the congo.

the lesson: an interesting dialogue to start with your kids is how LUCKY we are to have been born in a place of freedom. pure luck. how can we help others who have not been as lucky?

***added bonus: you needed help training your dog AND your kids, this whistle may actually come in handy.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

m to the b

well, this week marks the national launch of my other baby, Milk + Bookies. i started this non profit in 2004 and it is just now getting off the ground (good things come to those who wait). if you want a new idea for a birthday party or if you know some teens who are looking for a community service project, this is the place to visit:

there are step by step instructions to throw your own event where you can invite kids to a book store, (or your home) and ask them to choose, inscribe and donate books to local kids who have none.

this is really the same message i share here about giving little ones an experience where they can give back.

the motto: READ, GIVE, GROW.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Soul Searching

in the wake of the Haiti devastation, soles4souls is collecting shoes to send to those in desperate need. infants, children, teens and adults with nothing left are going without so much, we can easily help by getting them some SHOES to get back up on their feet. soles4souls started after the 2004 tsunami, this nashville-based company has been collecting shoes for people all over the world and in the last 6 years have given away almost 6 million pairs to those who desperately need them.

this is an easy class/ school activity and we encourage kids to go out into the community and get as many shoes donated as they can!

the lesson: same one it usually is - IT IS SO EASY TO HELP THOSE WHO NEED IT.

***added bonus: an excuse to replace of those chuck taylors your kid practically sleeps in.

Acme Library - All the World

this beautiful new book by liz garton scanlon and illustrated by marla frazee is a must for every family library. it celebrates humankind by following families in everyday activities just BEING together. it feels timeless without being too sappy and i will buy it for everyone i know (so if you know me and your child's birthday is coming, sorry, there are no surprises!)

to buy this book, see ACME LIBRARY on the right.
(this only works if you are on the acme sharing website)

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Acme holiday - MLK day 2010

"life's most persistent and urgent question is, "what are you doing for others?" Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

this week marks the 2 year anniversary of the acme sharing company, this is the 112th post for your enjoyment. i think the timing is quite poetic as this weekend is also the kick off for Martin Luther King, Jr. Day which has now, thanks to the OBAMAS, become a day of national service.

please use this holiday as an excuse to finally do the acme sharing projects you have been reading about here, but never found the time to execute.

there is a lot of stuff for your family to do at this blog; arts and crafts, field trips and building. i've represented activities for homelessness, global warming, animals and illnesses (to name a few). whatever your cause, whatever your methods, the only value is if you do them.

if you still can't find the time for anything extra (and i get it, believe me) then the suggested reading on the right side of the website is a great place to share a moral message with your child.

happy 2nd birthday to us and happy MLK day to you.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Project COZY

ok, it is COOOOOLD out there. and in other parts of the country it is even colder. here is an easy and helpful activity to do this weekend to help those who need something to snuggle up with and get warm. there are 2 easy ways to do this one:

1.) with you kids, clean out your linen closet and bring all unused blankets to your local homeless shelter.
2.) with your kids, go to the fabric store, pick out some fleece, take it home and use the "project linus" guidelines to turn it into a no-sew blanket to be donated to their local chapter (see website for locations)

here is the link for the blanket PDF

project linus, a nationwide nonprofit says, "it is our mission to provide love, a sense of security, warmth and comfort to children who are seriously ill, traumatized, or otherwise in need through the gifts of new, handmade blankets and afghans, lovingly created by volunteer “blanketeers.”

the lesson: it is too easy to take for granted something as obvious as a warm blanket. talk to you children about helping when and where we can. can they even imagine what it would be like to not have a blanket? a blanket is not only for getting cozy and good for fort building, but also for keeping us healthy and warm with a good night's sleep.

***added bonus: testing out the above lesson by getting under the covers and snuggling together!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Calling all VoluntEARS

now here's real incentive for doing some giving back.
in 2010 (just a sneeze away), for a day of service worked, you can earn a free day at the disney theme parks.

it is a nice reward for your efforts and a great way for children to get a real pay off for what normally shouldn't get any pay off - except a full heart. click onto the link for participating non profits and specific details for registration.

the lesson: when we expose our kids to service learning, it is important for them to get the idea that they are making a difference, and that alone is it's own reward. however a ride on Pirates feels pretty great, too!

*** added bonus: um... it's a free pass to disneyland.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Acme Holiday - And So It Begins...

alright, people, now is the time. this is your call to action. this is (or "tis") the season...

wanna give your kids an amazing gift? let them choose a toy to buy and donate. it is a great lesson in delayed gratification and an even better lesson in the joys of giving.

even if you don't participate in ANY of the acme sharing activities throughout the year, (i know, i know, i'm not judging you, i get it, life is BUSY) this is your moment to make time.

at the very least, take your children to the drugstore, pick up a toy and then take it to your local firehouse to donate it to TOYS FOR TOTS. this is really "give back 101".

for more advanced lessons, scroll through the acme sharing website archives for tons of ideas for giving, making and appreciating.

happy (beginning of the) holidays.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thanks and Giving

turkey day, such a great excuse to get your family thinking about gratitude, thankfulness and helping others less fortunate (or just others, period).

please encourage your kids to think of the things for which they are thankful. there are so many ways to do this; the kindness chain, the gratitude album, a video journal, drawing pictures and making a book, strips of paper in a hat to be pulled out and read aloud at the table. how about a gratitude tree? there are a lot of ways to do the same thing. all of these activities can be found on the acme sharing website if you just scroll down the archives of past posts.

it's a perfect set up as we enter into the weeks of holiday indulging.
this year let's not let the pies overshadow the point.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Acme Library - An Awesome Book

OMG this is the greatest book of all time! dallas clayton, dad, artist and adorable hipster has written and illustrated this insanely inspiring book for ALL AGES, dream big or go home being the gist of it. he is also a superhero since now, just because you buy one, he will be giving a book to a child who would otherwise not be able to purchase one - we are all familiar with buy one, give one. i am so excited about this!!! it is AWESOME.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Acme Holiday - Halloween/ Veteran's Day

my kids have already forgotten about their halloween candy, pretty great. but even better, is HALLOWEEN CANDY BUY BACK. this is where local dentists weigh and pay for your child's candy and ship it out. for $1 per pound, they will pay you for your loot and send it to soldiers on the front lines. of course, soldiers don't need candy as much as kids don't need candy but... it just makes everyone happy.

***added bonus: and with veteran's day coming up, it's a double whammy!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Acme Library - Pickle Chiffon Pie

no exaggeration, this book was my most most most favorite possession as a child. the story is about caring for and respecting others, there is no villain and love rules. "jolly" roger bradfield is an incredible illustrator capturing all that was cool about the 70's. this is the perfect fairy tale for boys (there are knights on a noble quest) and girls (a benevolent princess). and oh!, there is PIE!

to buy this book, see ACME LIBRARY on the right.
(this only works if you are on the acme sharing website)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Acme Holiday - Trick or Gift

so your kid has their costume, they are thinking of nothing else but trick or treating this weekend, you've got your flashlight and all is good to go.

SO, since you will be going door to door ANYWAY, here is a very easy giving back project/ lesson.

i posted about this last year for halloween so here it is again:

UNICEF has raised over $140 million and saved god only knows how many teeth from cavities.

if you don't know this program, it's where kids ask neighbors for pennies in lieu of candy. money raised is then sent in to help support the very worthy programs in over 150 countries.

since our kids will be at carnivals, class parties and more, they won't, in any way, be deprived of candy this halloween. so trick or treating can become about something else. i am not above bribing my kids to trick of treat for UNICEF and i will buy them their favorite candies in return (is this the wrong message?).

get your boxes at participating IKEA, PIER ONE IMPORTS or HALLMARK stores or

lesson: we drink clean water, not all children do. unicef helps provide for the kids who need water, medicine, food and education.

***added bonus: not hopped up on sugar, they might get to bed on time after an already over-stimulating day.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Pennies From Heaven

now that the kids are in school and have a rhythm going, how about a class project? greg mortenson (author of THREE CUPS OF TEA, a remarkably inspiring book) brings the pennies for peace program to school kids everywhere.

log onto the site, sign up and "By participating in Pennies for Peace you make a positive impact on a global scale, one penny at a time. While a penny is virtually worthless, in impoverished countries a penny buys a pencil and opens the door to literacy."

the site gives step by step instructions for classes to start a penny jar, weave cultural lessons about the middle east into their curriculum and teach philanthropy.

the lesson: with very little effort we can help do something as grand as BUILD A SCHOOL in a foreign country. we can make a difference.

***added bonus: your child feels powerful and you have a cleaner kitchen junk drawer, a cleaner bottom of your purse and a cleaner drink holder in your car!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Horror Story

this is unbelievable! "the story of stuff" will really make you think about what you have, where it comes from, how it's made and where it goes. a serious wake up call for the world of recycling, global warming and consumerism. this 20 minute movie will change the way you shop. it will make you think about STUFF and educate you in a way that you probably had an inkling about, but leaves no room for doubt. i hope everyone gets a chance to watch this. see it first by yourself and then watch it with your kids.

see it here:

the lesson: does my family really need another _____? how will it effect our lives vs. how will it effect the world?

***added bonus: an easy way to be inspired to get on that budget.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Important Reminders

today the folks at tiny revolutionary, an amazing website for clothing with a cause (, sent out this email to celebrate INTERNATIONAL PEACE DAY. i couldn't resist sharing it with you all.

- SMILE. The act of smiling releases endorphins and serotonin - the good mood chemicals coarsing through us. Smiling triggers these guys to wake up and start dancing which makes us happy. Happy people are peaceful people. And to paraphrase Elle Woods, peaceful people just don't kill people :).

NAMETAGS MATTER. Everyone who works in customer service wears a name tag and yet, very few people ever bother to call them by their name. Try including the person's name in your exchange next time and see how it changes the interaction. Recognizing that someone is a person, not a job, is a great way to break down those awkward walls we feel between us and promote understanding.

LISTEN MORE. We think a HUGE issue with all the nastiness spreading across the air waves has to do with wanting to be heard. Perhaps veryone is screaming so loudly because there is a famine of listeners. Spend a day being a listener . . . even if you totally disagree with what someone is saying, listen. Do not argue. Breathe. Know you do not bare the responsiblity for changing them and their opinions. Everyone's life experience delivers them to a set of conclusions about the way the world works. No single conversation will change anyone but you know what will make them better? Feeling as though they are heard. Be the hearer of their truth, even if it makes you want to run for the hills. People always feel more peaceful when they are heard.

PET SOMETHING FURRY. This one is just for you. The dog, cat, hamster, etc will get a lot out of it too but not as much as you will. Pets and animals remind us to just be still. In stillness there is peace.

HUG IT OUT. Hugs are a highly underrated form of peace activism but a really effective strategy for connecting with someone quickly. If we could ditch hand shakes altogether and go for the full body contact we would. Imagine how much better those business meetings would be if you started with a hug? To bolster your hug reserves, check out this Video of the Free Hugs Campaign - we dare you not to cry.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Lunch Bunch

as we pack up the beach chairs and umbrellas to gear up for the year ahead, school supplies, school clothes and new lunch boxes are on the list. here's a few "green" lunch boxes made with safe materials, trash free and keep your kid's food cozy and delish (providing you make something they will eat).

the lesson: this is a very active way in which your kids can feel like they are participating in helping the earth. they can carry their lunch boxes with pride when they know it is made in a healthy way and keeps trash and plastic out of the landfills and oceans.

***added bonus: maybe they will attempt to eat what's in it on order to show it off.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

You Are What You Eat

as if we don't already have enough on our plate (wink), i thought it would be nice to try revamping our family meals.

ORGANIC FOOD and why it's important:

children are 4 times more susceptible to pesticides and other toxins than adults. many approved chemicals were registered long before research linked them to cancer and other diseases.

when these chemicals are used in farming, they are not only ON the food, but they are in the air and the run off pollutes our water supply (which we will eventually intake as well).

in non organic farming, more energy is used to produce synthetic fertilizers than is used to till and harvest ALL of the farms in the U.S.

organic produce is far superior in nutrients and vitamins.

there are lots of political reasons like the fact that our taxes are paying for hazardous waste to clean up environmental damage caused by non organic farms BUT

one of the best reasons is because it TASTES SO MUCH BETTER!!!

i found this information and a ton more like it at mmmunch.
this amazing "wholesome nutritional" website (from 2 healthy moms) offers recipes, tips for picky eaters, pantry make-overs and cooking classes for parents. sign up on their website for "tasty tidbits". yummy.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Marco Polo

hopefully your summer has had some beach time, or at the very least, pool time. as you and your family enjoy the buoyant joys of swimming and splashing, remember the dolphins.

makers of THE COVE, a new film by ric o'barry (trainer of FLIPPER), ask us to help save the dolphins. each year in a small village in japan, over 20,000 dolphins are slaughtered and their meat is sold as "whale meat". most japanese people don't know of this injustice.

this movie isn't for the kids but the subject of helping to save these amazing mammals is.

easy things we can do to help is:
1.) choose safe seafood.
2.) write to our leaders to help get the word out in japan.
3.) teach our kids to be kind to all living creatures.

*** amazing fact, "of all the wild animals on earth, only dolphins have been known to come to a human's rescue. the primary enemy of a dolphin is humankind".

Monday, July 27, 2009

The Garbage Collector

i have the funniest nephew who loves to find "treasures" everywhere. i don't envy my sister-in-law having to clean out his pockets in the laundry room. while out for dinner last week, he collected straws, cocktail stirrers, tourist's maps and corks. he loves to make "art" with his finds and since they aren't really recycled since they have not yet been used, it's a new kind of project (see "ONE MAN'S TRASH" post below for making a recycle sculpture).

when i found TRASH FOR TEACHING it made me think of him immediately. i know he isn't the only kid who loves this, so here is more info: "Trash for Teaching collects clean and safe cast-off materials from manufacturing processes (that would otherwise become trash) and re-purposes them as educational resources. With those materials we provide a comprehensive arts education program in local school districts."
*but you don't have to be a classroom to benefit. you can order your own box of treasures for T4T by going to their website.

click the link under PRODUCTS for JUNKIT and for $40 you will get a large box of treasure/ art supplies.

at least you won't have to worry about the secret stash of paperclips getting into the washing machine.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Come Fly With Me

lazy hazy days of summer? i hardly think so. the list of projects i had planned to do with my kids is buried deep under a pile of who knows what. how did it get so hectic around here?

you may be in the same boat, but what about the PLANE? most of us will be traveling this summer, if only for a long weekend, and there is no better captive audience than a child on an airplane. what a great time to load up on books with a great moral and read away through the clouds.

for a list of favorites, check out the ACME LIBRARY on the right side of this website. and here are a few new titles to add.

SASSAFRASS - a stray dog finds the meaning of family.

FIREFLIES - if you love it, set it free.

THOSE SHOES - things you have are worth more than things you want.

happy landings!

Friday, July 3, 2009

Supplies Surprise

i know it feels really early for this, but just a little something to keep in mind.
when you start buying school supplies, throw in a few extra folders and pencils to donate.

the school supply drive 101 sponsored by "do something" (a great service leaning site for teenagers) asks you to drop off school supplies at any local STAPLES. they will be distributed to children living in need so that they can more easily attend school in the fall.

the lesson: it's hard not to take the basics for granted. even school for some kids is a real struggle.

***added bonus: beat the rush and get supplies while you have top choice of trapper keepers (i always hated the name "trapper keeper", just thought i'd share).

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Out of the Box

making family time for EXTRAS is a constant uphill battle, i often feel like Sisyphus. but when you see the effects of "extras" like giving, it seems incredibly worthwhile; the kids are engaged, they feel useful and they carry with them a new confidence.

this summer, i challenge you to THE BOX PROJECT. this non profit pairs you with a family living in poverty in the USA. each month, based on the recipient family's needs, you and your family send a box, some months it's filled with food, other months medical supplies and another time may be books and toys - each month might be a combination of all of the above.

i love that it's a scheduled amount of time for your family to set aside each month to focus on others in need. there are letters and pictures exchanged and a real bond forms between the two families.

the lesson: a family just like ours is less lucky than we are BUT we can help.

***added bonus: a project to keep them off of the video games at least one day a month this summer.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Acme Birthdays - appreciation circles

today my son celebrated his birthday at school. they have an amazing tradition of making each child a BIRTHDAY APPRECIATION CIRCLE. i bet you could guess that it's where the class sits around while each student says something about the birthday boy (or girl) that they appreciate. but aside from it's obvious name, this was better than any play set from toys r us and something i hope every school does. 

a great way to show gratitude and kindness to others of all ages AND doesn't need to just be for birthdays. try it around the dinner table, a girl scout fireside or a school/ summer camp morning meeting. the boost of confidence is quite a gift for that child.

the lesson: thinking about others and some simple ways to help people feel good. then there's karma - in a circle especially, what comes around goes around!

***added bonus: the savings on presents!!!!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

At Home Heroes

i can't fight it. SCREEN TIME is everywhere; TV, computer, video games, portable DVD players, iphones, ipods and portable gaming systems like a DS or PSP. jeesh. that's a lot of screens. if you can't beat em, at least you can make it worthwhile. i know (from too much personal experience) that there are some amazing games on the market that can be used as learning tools. so goes it for online gaming.

HABITAT HEROES is a website with social networking for kids and information to educate and inspire them about the environment. sharon lowe, the founder of HH says that treating other living creatures with respect is of the utmost importance to her family, and that children learn better by playing - we can all agree with that. so she has put to practice these ideas to help teach kids about the animal habitats that are being affected by global warming. players choose an animal and make their way through the site.

the lesson: their eyes glued to a screen, at least can be productive. children often relate to animals' struggles as they also feel like voiceless beings themselves.

***added bonus: once kids learn games on this child friendly site, a parent might just have time to say... open a magazine?? return a phone call?? ahh, the dreams. how they change.  

Sunday, May 17, 2009


it often feels like i can go weeks, even months, without seeing the big picture. living in a myopic world of my family and the "to-do list", i forget about all the help needed in the world. AND to add insult to injury, i know i'm not alone when i fondly reference those regular, almost mindless, trips to target where very full shopping carts (sometimes two) of god only knows what are de riguer.

here we can solve both of those problems: make meaningful purchases at target AND help those who need it.

the TARGET HOUSE is a home like no other. it is affiliated with the st. jude's children's research hospital and accommodates thousands of families NOT on vacation. they have made a wish list of items that you can easily buy on to help these children feel more comfortable during their treatments.

although you still might need to go to target for toilet paper (and 5 dozen more random items), at least now you can cross off help others from your "to-do list" this week.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

'Wich Craft

my kids eat the same lunch almost daily. peanut butter and jelly sandwich for one, and soynut butter and jelly for the other (who has a strict "no nut" policy at school, and yet, somehow they always let me in!). 
making lunches is a deeply tedious task and one of my least favorite mom jobs.
BUT since we're doing it anyway, here's a kooky idea...

what about a sandwich assembly line? a loaf of bread, a jar of PB, a jar of jelly, a butter knife and some ziplock bags. you and your kids can whip out a dozen sandwiches in no time flat.

take them to a shelter, a food bank or just hand them out on the street to those who look like they could use it. it is really fast and really fun and makes a really big difference to the people who are hungry. 

the lesson: if we can help, it's our job to do so. this is the same lesson written here again and again but it's the lesson i really want my kids to own.

***added bonus: while you're at it make a few extras and stockplie for the week's lunch boxes.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Bigger Big Sunday

every spring BIG SUNDAY arrives and this year it is upon us may 3rd. this is a day where families everywhere volunteer to help a long list of organizations. similar to michelle obama's "call to service", this day asks you to just DO SOMETHING, ANYTHING to help out. anywhere.

i keep hearing schools talk about "100% participation" about different things from giving money to parking in the correct pick-up spot, BUT... what if we had a world where giving back had 100% participation? imagine what that would look like. 

if you can't find anything near you, feel free to take ideas listed on this site and have your own "little sunday".

the lesson: true, our kids have homework and soccer and ballet and sunday school. our lives are FULL, but if we can expose them to helping and giving kinds of experiences, they will shine, grow and feel in ways that will reward not only the recipient of the help, but mostly your child. they will feel big and significant in the world. they can make a difference.

*** added bonus: i say SUNDAES for all participants of "big sunday"! of course, you'll have to organize the trip to ben and jerry's on your own.