The Tween Years | Easing Back to School Anxiety

August 19th, 2015 | Posted in The Tween Years

tips for easing back to school anxiety

As our tweens begin a new school year, many of them are a ball of emotions ranging from excitement to anxiety to terror! Here are some tips that can help ease your tween’s back to school anxiety—whether they are starting a new school or a new grade. Continue Reading...

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Play With Your Food! Tangram Puzzle Sandwich

August 5th, 2015 | Posted in Features, Play + Learn

these tangram sandwiches are a fun twist on the classic puzzles

This is my 48th Adventures in Learning post! For this one I adapted a project from a great book about math. It’s a classic twist on tangram puzzles. I love it because it’s creative, whimsical, and dead simple. Plus, it helps challenge kids to think about things differently—geometry is all around us; a sandwich can become art; some rules should be challenged (e.g., a sandwich doesn’t always have to come in halves).

Click here for the full post!

ps. I’ve been working with PBS Parents for nearly two years now. Time has flown and I’ve learned some surprising things. First, I write a lot about math. I was not an exceptional math student in school. I didn’t love it. It stressed me out. I’m sure that’s why I try so hard now to think of ways math would have appealed more to me as a kid. Second, the general public is way harsher than I give them credit for. Like, Whoaaaaa, settle down now people and step away from keyboard. Third, I’m a seriously lucky blogger.

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Girls and Science

July 22nd, 2015 | Posted in Science Fun

sally ride

I was recently asked by Green Works to share a story for their #NaturalPotential campaign. You can learn more about their campaign by watching this video. This is my story…

I tried to hide my geekiness throughout most of my grade school years. I don’t know how it happened, but somewhere along the way, I picked up that being smart or passionate wasn’t cool. I mean it was if you were a girl at the tippy top of the class, but for someone like me who was a solidly B/B+ student? Not so much.

I only remember two teachers from seventh grade; both were passionate: Ms. Herrera and Mr. Bell. Mr. Bell taught social studies, sang in a barbershop quartet and spent an entire class period explaining why he was voting for Dukakis. He also imparted wisdom on the usage of extension cords. “Always plug in from the AV equipment to the wall. Always unplug from the wall to the AV equipment.” Mr. Bell’s handlebar mustache was disconcerting, but I respected the man. Continue Reading...

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Tween Style + HP Sprout = Design Your Own Teeshirt

July 8th, 2015 | Posted in The Tween Years

This post is sponsored by Sprout® by HP

The thing I notice about having tweens is that their sense of individuality kicks into high gear. It’s pretty incredible to watch. It also brings back strong memories (e.g., peg-leg rolls, big bangs, and a regrettable pair of burlap shorts). I’m incredibly fond of those memories, even if I look back at pictures and wonder, What in the world was I thinking?! Going through those moments of self-expression were critical to both my development and my self-esteem. It makes sense, because allowing kids to express their individuality is key in helping them develop a positive self image.

It’s interesting to see how my kids’ generation uses art and technology to express themselves. For instance, our daughter recently spent an afternoon designing her own teeshirt using the HP Sprout. She started with a sketch, then gathered materials. She used the overhead camera to take pictures of her materials and manipulated them to create a collage. It was super simple and I sincerely love that the HP Sprout allows users to blend handwork with digital capture. Watch the video above to see how she did it…

You’ll Need: Continue Reading...

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Happy 4th!

July 4th, 2015 | Posted in Features

sea to shining sea

We’re heading south this week to the shores of North Carolina. We have one post while we’re away that I’m super excited about (it’s a new video), so keep your eyes peeled. But my priorities next week look like this: a little reading, maybe some writing, but above all else, relaxing. Also, I’m staying the heck out of the water. The sharks can have it. I’ll just appreciate the ocean from afar.

Have a wonderful week, friends! Oh, and I’ll make sure to share some photos on Instagram. :)

ps. a few happy beachy posts…
-shell memories
-summer sand art
-things to do in the outer banks: nags head

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A Letter to My Kids

July 1st, 2015 | Posted in Parenting, The Tween Years


Before I get to this letter, there are some things I want to say. I’ve never been the type of blogger who wrote an open letter to her kids. Maybe I didn’t have the words. Or maybe I needed the distance between parenting little kids to where I am now. Whatever the reason, today, thank you for allowing me to be that type of blogger…

Where have the years gone. It’s hard for me to believe that I have been a mother for more than a dozen years now.

Once you relied on me for everything, now you are capable of so much on your own. I see it in our interactions. Our relationship has deepened. Continue Reading...

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Our Favorite Summer Art Projects!

June 30th, 2015 | Posted in Art School

Summer Fun Art Tips

If you are anything like me, you long for summer to come and then when it arrives you wonder how you can add just the right amount of routine into your days! My family thinks I’m crazy. I hate the hustle and bustle of school days but am not satisfied with long days in front of the television either. Creating, researching and making can be the simple bridge between those two extremes. These summertime tips and art projects can do wonders for kids’ imaginations and add just the right amount of routine into your summer days.
Continue Reading...

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Hair Story

June 24th, 2015 | Posted in Features, Style, this is 39


Oh, hair. I’ve been through every emotion with mine—love, rage, fear, awe (as in what the ???), and yes, grief.

I’ve been scarred by my hair. In fact, I can recall with such vivid intensity two hair-traumas, it’s like they happened earlier today. The first was the summer before my freshman year of high school. My aunt took me to a salon hidden inside JC Penny for a perm. The first clue something terrible was about to happen: the salon was empty. Second: it was located inside a department store. Continue Reading...

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