Play, learn, explore in February


Written by Kara Fleck, Simple Kids editor and Rockin’ Granola mama.

It is almost February and that means loves is in the air and we”ll be celebrating Valentine”s Day.

At our house we”re also looking forward to February because the month brings with it Shrove Tuesday, or Pancake Day, and a few special birthdays as well as Chinese New Year.  Did you know that 2013 is the year of the snake?  And, let us not forget that little groundhog on February 2nd.

February in Indiana usually means that Winter has more cold days  and dark nights in store for us, and we”re spending our days by the fire, reading and doing some handwork crafts, and trying to keep the doldrums from setting in.  February may be the shortest month on the calendar, but there are times it seems very long indeed.

I”ve rounded up a few ways to play, learn, and explore this February to help keep those late Winter doldrums at bay.

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Hop on the Orangutan Van with SteveSongs

SteveSongs Orangutan Van cover art
The following is by Jennifer of Swing, Whistle, Zing.
Okay, is your “math brain” ready?  How many orangutans can you fit in a van?  If you count the number of times we’ve repeated that song in our own car, it could be well over 100.  But if you’re asking Mr. Steve, it’s a little it closer to 11.

This quirky math based song is one of many that we’ve come to love off of the just released album of the same name, Orangutan Van, by Steve Roslonek of SteveSongs.

Orangutan Van

While you may also know him as Mr. Steve, co-host of PBS KIDS preschool destination, don’t stop there thinking his music is strictly for the preschool set.  He writes songs to educate and entertain with an emphasis on humor that is not lost on the more sophisticated ears in the room.

This album will bridge the gap between preschool and grade school with songs that appeal to kids in both age categories.

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Valentine’s Day sweets and treats


Written by Kara Fleck, Simple Kids editor and Rockin’ Granola mama.

February is right around the corner, bringing with it Valentine’s Day.  If you’re looking for a simple way to celebrate love with your little sweethearts, why not surprise them with some special Valentine’s Day food?

Heart Shaped

With a cookie cutter or a knife, cut their food into a heart shape and even normal every-day peanut butter and jelly becomes special.  There are plenty of foods that lend themselves to this simple, heart-shaped trick that would make a fun Valentine’s Day twist such as apples, cheese, or your favorite cookie recipe.

Don’t forget those X and O cookie cutters from your alphabet collection, too.  We could always use extra hugs and kisses!  Or, you could serve red and pink food, not from food dye, but food that is naturally found in these cupid-friendly hues, such as red peppers, beets, purple cauliflower, red grapes, and more.

From breakfast to dessert, here is a round of up heart-y treats! (sorry, I couldn’t resist the pun)

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Weekend links


There are only 32 days to go for our Pure Charity fundraiser for the Compassion Child Survival Program.  This project means so much to us here at Simple Living Media and I”m pleased to say that we”re getting closer to our goal:  we”ve raised $3,651 for the CSP as of this morning.  Hooray!

I just know that with your help we can make it the rest of the way.  Thank you so much for your support!

Have a wonderful Sunday, friends!

A day in the life


Jamie invited me over to Simple Homeschool to share with you a glimpse of our day for her Day in the Life series.  So, I’m over there sharing what homeschooling looked like last Friday for the fifth grader, first grader, preschooler, and seventeen month old and for me, their work-from-home mom.

I’d love it if you would join me at Simple Homeschool today.

From the post …

I’d say my main homeschool influences are Waldorf inspired and Charlotte Mason, but we do allow for technology and a more free-flowing relaxed daily rhythm.

5:30 am – a peaceful beginning

My day begins early.  I’m a morning person and I’m awake at 5:30.  I get dressed and then come downstairs and shuffle around the house.  I let the dog out, having a quiet time, make myself a mug of coffee, while mentally reviewing my To Do list. I answer emails, edit blog posts, and do a bit of writing.

[Read the rest at Simple Homeschool]