Soul shaking influence (poem)

2005Jillianpiano
Since I’ve been talking about my big kid here on the blog lately, I thought I would share a poem that I wrote last year about her. I know it isn’t the type of content I usually publish here, but I thought you might enjoy it. Also, it gave me an excuse to share one of my favorite pictures of her at age four.

(And if you’re ever interested in more of my creative writing, you are invited to visit my personal blog. The Love Songs are my favorite.)

Sometimes I’m not sure which I find more startling as a parent: the things they do which are the perfect echo of myself or the things about them which are so entirely unique to them, bursting forth
without any influence.  I think those thoughts are where today’s words come from.

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Kiddin’ Around: the 4th week of May

Little poser Kiddin' Around | SimpleKids.net

Note: there are affiliate links in this post. Thanks for your support.

Welcome to Kiddin’ Around, where I share different activities, games, crafts, and links the kids and I have loved each week.

Right now my kids are ages 2, 6, 7, and 12. Here’s what we’ve been up to this week and how we’ve been kiddin’ around:

Music: – not really music, but music to my ears! I really enjoyed listening to this episode of a very fun new podcast, The Read Aloud Revival. This episode features one of my favorite people, Tsh Oxenreider talking about how reading aloud is like comfort food. I know I keep mentioning this here, there, and everywhere, but it really is a great podcast.

Watching: – our favorite cars go around the track.  When we haven’t been visiting the Indianapolis Motor Speedway ourselves this week, we’ve been hooked on the app and the website watching the LiveStream.

Very, Very Pinteresting – we are planning a super laid back Summer. Aside from Backyard Nature Camp, we aren’t planning much.  No summer reading challenge, no bucket list, no 100 Days lists.  We have had a hectic year and I don’t want to commit us to any more than a real, true break full of downtime and freedom. Amen.

However, this pin on Pinterest certainly has our attention and I think the kids and I will enjoy printing this out and having it handy in the minivan for all of our Summer travel days.

Things to Eat and Drink – As the temps climbed this week, we’ve been breaking out the homemade popsicles (take that, ice cream truck!).  Some of our favorites are here at Simple Bites. Note: we used raspberries with this recipe as that is what we got from our CSA this week and they were yummy!

IMSgigglesAll giggles at IMS on Wednesday.

Games: – we’ve been playing an awful lot of Spot It! this week after we rediscovered it during a recent play room clean out. Don’t you just love it when something old is new again for your kids?

What We’re ReadingMy oldest is very excited about this book as we are planning a visit to Walt Disney World in the future.

Also, speaking of books, I want to take this moment to remind you one more time about the special launch week only price for Three to Five: Playful Preschool.

How about you? What have you and your kiddos been up to this week? Share in the comments below.


Summer looming large ahead of you? Unsure how to fill the dates on the calendar? Jessica of Life As Mom has you covered with her Summer Survival Guide, on sale for $5 until May 27. Grab your copy today!

Let’s hear it for the big kids!

Let's Hear it for the Big Kids! | SimpleKids.net

When people ask me how I survived the years when we had two children under the age of two, and later three children under the age of five, my answer is always that it was (and is) in part because of my wonderful oldest daughter Jillian.

We did not choose or set out to have an almost five year age gap in between our first born and our second oldest child, it is just the way things worked out for us.  We also didn’t necessarily plan to have our last three children in such quick succession either (don’t you just love when you have one set of plans and then God has another, always better, idea?)

Jillian’s cheerful, helpful, happy nature makes her such an awesome big sister. And while, like her mother, she’s a bit on the introverted side and doesn’t brag about herself, I don’t mind bragging about her at all – she’s a terrific kid!

For this week’s Friday Five I want to talk about and celebrate my big kid!  There’s so many wonderful things about having older children.

Here are just a few of my favorite things about big kids:

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Three to Five: Playful Preschool – launch price won’t last!

Playful Preschool ebook for your 3 to 5 year old

Parents and caregivers of preschoolers, have you heard the news about the Three to Five: the Playful Preschool ebook?

Full of creative, hands-on learning – including math, language, science, art, and play ideas, this new ebook collaboration from some other parenting and kid bloggers (including myself) is available during launch week for a special low price.

Full of clear, great photos with step-by-step guides for things you can easily try at home, this ebook has:

  • 25+ ideas for preschoolers
  • ten printable resources (a city scape play scene, My First Journal pages, recipe card, numbers game, weather chart printables, alphabet play mats, unique hand-drawn art pages, conversation cards, block building challenge cards, bookmarks)

You can read more about the ebook (and see a sweet video) here in my original post from Monday.

I wanted to pop in quickly to remind you that the special launch price of $6.99 for is one week only. (After that it will be $8.99)

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Hope you and your kids are having a great week!  I’ll be back tomorrow with The Friday Five.

Come follow, follow us to … Community Day at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway

SimpleKids_IMSCommunityDay2014
I‘m so happy to introduce another new series here on the blog, all about our family field trips and adventures:  Come Follow, FollowDo you recognize one of the littlest Fleck’s favorite songs?

Today the kids and I wanted to share with you our recent trip to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the Indianapolis 500 Community day.

My husband and I are both big Indy Car fans and we also both grew up with fond memories of the speedway and the Indy 500. In my case, a family love affair with auto racing goes back to my children’s great grandparents.

It means a lot to Christopher and I that the our kids enjoy racing, too. It is nice to be able to share with them something we love and to have a sport that we all follow as a family together – from Great-Grandma to our toddler, we all have a love of IndyCar in common.

Community Day at the Speedway is an annual event that we all look forward to. It really is a unique place with a history unlike any other. In fact, I was a bit snap happy with the camera and I had a hard time narrowing down which pictures to show you, so this is more image heavy than my usual blog post (but if you have a race car fan at your house, I think it will be worth it).

So in today’s post, the kids and I invite you to come follow, follow, follow us to …. Community Day at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

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