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Archive for August, 2009

FLANNERY McKracken Will Not Get Up

The Parents of Flannery McKracken When we asked you for backseat pastimes last week, we never expected such a surge of great ideas! Anyone traveling this Labor Day weekend will want to browse the list. Meanwhile, we’re sending the copy of “Origami on the Go” out to this week’s winner, Marie.

Now we’re moving on to another giveaway and this one’s a very funny picture book – one I think we can all relate to – “The Parents of Flannery McKracken” by Gary Wise. Flannery, you see, does not like to get up, get dressed and get going in the morning. Nope, it takes seven Fairy Godmothers, a marching band and a cannon just to get the kid dressed. Not sure who’s going to giggle at the goings on more, you or your kid. Want the book? Click comments and share a “dragging the kid out of bed” tale or other parenting tip. We’ll draw a winner’s name next Monday!

Posted on Monday, August 31st, 2009
Under: Books, Contest | 4 Comments »

PARENT TALKS: Booties, Accidents & Grandparents

Crying baby“Booties Camp: Baby Basics”
Sept. 4 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Bananas, Oakland
First in a series of five classes for new and expecting parents. This session covers such basics as bathing, breast feeding support, diapering and hygiene, baby-proofing your home, and sleep.

“Childhood Matters: Preventing Accidents at Home”
Sept. 6 from 7 to 8 a.m. on 98.1 KISS-FM and streamed live on Rona Renner, RN, and guests discuss home safety.

“Living with Threes and Fours”
Sept. 8 from 7 to 8 p.m. at Bananas, Oakland
Meg Zweiback, RN, leads this workshop for parents of toddlers.
Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Monday, August 31st, 2009
Under: Parenting Issues | No Comments »

FAB Five for the Weekend

Samurai Exhibit (Courtesy Asian Art Museum) Supreme Samurai: What kid doesn’t swoon over samurai warriors? Check out the “Lords of the Samurai” exhibit at San Francisco’s Asian Art Museum now through Sept. 20. Museum admission is $7-$12, plus an extra $5 for the samurai exhibit.

Puppetry Heaven: Children’s Fairyland hosts an entire weekend of puppet fun, including a Mexican fiesta tale, “The Fisherman and his Wife, and “Tales from Beatrix Potter.” There’s even a puppet petting zoo. Admission $7.

Barnyard reading Fest: Kids reading to pigs and goats for charity? Sounds like a Barnyard Book-a-Thon. Menlo Park’s Reading Clinic is hosting the literary fun, which also includes a petting zoo, face painting and pony rides, at Webb Ranch on Aug. 30 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is free, and the read-a-thon benefits Angels on Stage, a nonprofit theater troupe for children of differing abilities.
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Posted on Wednesday, August 26th, 2009
Under: Family Outings, Schools | No Comments »

ORIGAMI On-the-Go Giveaway

Origami On-the-Go by Margaret Van Sicklen Last week’s tales of sibling rivalry were awesome! Congrats go out to Jane, who won the copy of “Almost.” Now we’re moving on to arts and crafts and those classics of childhood: origami and cootie catchers.

This week’s prize is “Origami On the Go” by Margaret van Sicklen. It’s a perfect back seat collection for young travelers, because it includes easy to follow paper folding instructions for making everything from Egyptian mummies to finger puppets, knick-knack boxes and yes, cootie catchers. And it includes 100 sheets of origami paper and fun stickers. Awesome. And just in time for Labor Day weekend too.  Just click “comments” and share your family’s favorite keep-the-backseat-crowd-happy tip. We’ll draw a winner’s name next Monday.

Posted on Monday, August 24th, 2009
Under: Contest | 19 Comments »

San Mateo’s Hillsdale High Evacuated

San Mateo’s Hillsdale High was evacuated this morning after a pipe bomb exploded on campus. Police arrived on the scene after a teacher reported spotting someone with a gun. The explosion occurred shortly after police arrived. No one was injured, but some 1,200 teens were evacuated to a middle school nearby and parents were notified. Meanwhile SWAT and police bomb squads continue to search the high school. According to KTVU-2, a second device has already been discovered, and a suspect is in custody.

Posted on Monday, August 24th, 2009
Under: Uncategorized | 4 Comments »

PARENT TALKS: Free Family Law Clinic

Supreme Court (Photo by Chuck Kennedy/KRT) “Free Family Law Clinic”
Aug. 25 from 3 to 7 p.m. at Bananas, Oakland
A free Family Law Clinic for low-income families embroiled in domestic matters. Sponsored by BANANAS and offered by the Volunteer Legal Services of the Alameda County Bar Association. Reservations are required; call Volunteer Legal Services, 510-302-2222.

“Free Workshop for College-bound Teens and their Families”
Aug. 29 at 2 p.m. Lakeview Branch Library, 550 El Embarcadero, Oakland
This free college prep workshop covers everything from the college search to hot essay topics. Led by Berkeley High grad and former Yale admissions recruiter Kamala Appel. For details, visit Free.

“Childhood Matters: Kids & Sleep”
Aug. 30 from 7 to 8 a.m. on 98.1 KISS-FM and streamed live on Rona Renner, RN, and guest Karen Pollack discuss ways to help children sleep soundly through the night.

Something to add to the list? E-mail us the details or click “comments” and add it right here.

Posted on Sunday, August 23rd, 2009
Under: Parenting Issues | No Comments »

FAB Five for the Weekend

Museum of Children's Art Drop-In Art: Drop by Oakland’s MOCHA, the Museum of Children’s Art, and make puppets this weekend from noon to 5 p.m. $7 per child.

Snakes & More Snakes: Also Nazis, artifacts and plenty of derring-do. Break out the popcorn, spread your blanket and kick back for a screening of “Raiders of the Lost Ark” on Aug. 20 at Pleasanton’s free Movies in the Park Summer Series. Films are shown at twilight, around 8:30-ish, on a giant screen in Delucchi Park. Free popcorn.

Love Bug: The city of Concord is hosting a night at the movies in Todos Santos Plaza Aug. 20. Hear live music, then stick around for the saga of a lovable Volkswagen — Herbie the “Love Bug.” Free.
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Posted on Wednesday, August 19th, 2009
Under: Family Outings | No Comments »

MORE Frugal Back-to-School Tips

Hannah Montana Lunch Box A couple of weeks ago, we featured some great, thrifty back-to-school shopping tips from the folks at Consumer Reports. Now, chimes in with a top ten ways to save pennies while buying endless glue sticks and pencil cases. All ten tips are terrific, but our favorite is this one:

“Hold off buying trendier gear like lunch boxes and pencil cases. Kids may love a version they find in July, but once they start school and see that their friends are all using another kind, they’ll beg you to upgrade them — and that only results in wasted cash.”

Ahhh! So true! Click here for more, including a back-to-school neighborhood swap and DIY snazzy folders. Then click “comments” and share your frugal tips with the rest of us!

Posted on Tuesday, August 18th, 2009
Under: Finances, Kids & Tweens | No Comments »

SWINE Flu Tips from Packard Children’s Hospital

Experimental H1N1 vaccine testing (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey) People panicked when the new H1N1 virus suddenly swept through schools last spring. Now pharmaceutical companies are racing to complete testing of a “swine flu” vaccine for fall. And Yvonne Maldonado, MD, chief of infectious disease at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford, is offering a list of helpful, precautionary tips for families, including expectant mothers.

Special Advice for Pregnant Women: “Pregnant women should be especially careful to avoid being exposed to the influenza virus,” Maldonado says. Expectant women have been particularly susceptible to the swine flu. If you are pregnant and develop flu symptoms – cough, fever or sore throat – call your doctor immediately. The priority list for the H1N1 vaccine, which doctors hope will be ready by late fall, puts pregnant women first, then young children and their caregivers, and then older children.

Kids Get Two: Children should get two vaccinations – one for regular influenza and another for H1N1l. Kids who have never had a flu shot, says Maldonado, may need more than one dose. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Tuesday, August 18th, 2009
Under: Health & Safety | No Comments »

ALMOST… A Book Giveaway

"Almost" by Richard Torrey No, really a book giveaway of “Almost,” the adorable picture book by Richard Torrey. It’s perfect for younger sibs who, like Torreys’ hero Jack, are always trying to compete with that idolized big brother or sister. Jack almost manages to ride his brother’s bike – till he crashes. Jack almost cooks his own breakfast – till the milk goes splat and the toaster spews smoke. And Jack almost hits a home run – er, except for that pesky pitcher and bat and ump. You’ll love it. And all you have to do to win a copy is click “comments” and share a tale or tip about sibling woes. We’ll draw a winner’s name on Monday!

Posted on Monday, August 17th, 2009
Under: Books, Contest | 11 Comments »