Spin the Bottle: A Fun Family Conversation Starter

The following is by contributor Mariah Bruehl of .

How was your day at school? How many of us have asked this question to our children and received an ambiguous and uninformative response?

As parents we have an innate desire to connect with and understand our children, yet it can often seem difficult to come up with the right question at the right time.

The bottom line is sometimes we need a little help.

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Sparkle Stories: And the Winners Are …

The winners of last weekend’s Sparkle Stories giveaway are:

Andrea H “We would love to win a 3 mo subscription. I keep trying to find new, interesting ways to entertain my kids.”
Angela “Sparkle Stories are wonderful! We would LOVE to win a subscription!”


Congratulations Andrea and Angela!  Check your email for further information on how to get started enjoying your Sparkle Stories.

Coupon Code

For everyone else, the kind folks at Sparkle Stories have created a generous coupon code for Simple Kids readers!

The lovely folks at Sparkle Stories are offering a wonderful discount to all Simple Kids readers — $1 for the first month! Choose from one of three Sparkle Stories story packages, and try four weeks of Sparkle goodness for one dollar. Go to: http://www.sparklestories.com/trysparkle/ Use the magic code 6E32 to receive your discount!.

Happy listening!

Weekend Links

And don”t forget you have until midnight EST tonight to enter to win the Sparkle Stories giveawayHappy Weekending!

Weekend Giveaway: Sparkle Stories

Today’s weekend giveaway is for one of our new family favorites: Sparkle Stories!

If you’re looking for a unique gift for the kids in your life, may I suggest this site? The tales are engaging and fun. A subscription make a unique gift that  doesn’t take up any room in the toy box, kids can share, and will give joy week after week.

This giveaway is now closed and winners will be announced Tuesday. Thanks!

The Fleck children are big fans of the Martin and Sylvia stories, but there are many subscription options sure to delight your child!

From the Sparkle Stories website:

“Sparkle is an online resource for high-quality audio stories for children and families. Each week Sparkle Stories delivers delightful audio stories to subscribers around the world.

We offer three original Story Series, plus a fourth Series with classic stories, songs and games, all designed to entertain and inspire the whole family.

Audio stories, or stories told out-loud, are untethered to images viewed on a screen. The child is free and able to paint her own pictures out of her own imagination. She becomes relaxed and entranced – committing herself fully to a fantastic adventure.

Sparkle Stories are fun, Sparkle Stories are inspiring, and Sparkle Stories are good for young minds and spirits! Our stories inspire a sense of wonder and magic in life, encourage creativity and a strong sense of self, and even illuminate common childhood challenges.”

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Simple Valentine's Day Celebrations

The following post is by editor Kara Fleck. It originally appeared February 2011.

Valentine”s Day is just around the corner.  I”ve written before about how I believe we should always be telling our kids we love them, and showing them with more than our words, as well.

However, I also enjoy that a day has been set aside just for the purpose of celebrating love and I like the idea of an extra-special “love day.”

Like many of you, I”m thinking about budget-friendly but fun things that I can do for the holiday that will make my kids smile.  Celebrations don”t have to be expensive or extravagant to make the day a memorable one.

In fact, it is often the little things that children remember and talk about from year to year.  Those are the memories they carry with them into adulthood.

Here are a few simple ideas for Valentine”s Day …

Be Colorful

Reds and pinks are the colors of the day.

  • Get dressed in red and/or pink.
  • Set the table with a colored tablecloth – Do you have any red dishes? Cups or coffee mugs?
  • Decorate with red and pink paper hearts.
  • Make some pink and red .
  • Make red or pink smoothies (we keep frozen strawberries and cherries on hand just for pink smoothies.)
  • Write a love note in red crayon.

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