Podcasts Are Rocking My World!

Podcasts App

Podcasts App

Podcasts are rocking my world! I know they have been around for years, but recently I finally figured them out. I love them for these five reasons that may appeal to other parents:

  • Learn something new. Honestly, if I want to learn about history – cue up the podcast. If I want to get some parenting wisdom – cue up the podcast. If I want to relax – cue up the podcast. They are sort of miraculous!
  • Put me to [back to] sleep. I have a few podcasts I use to help me go to sleep – or go back to sleep if I wake up in the middle of the night. I leave my phone by the bedside with my earbuds attached. If I wake up, I pop on one of my cued up podcasts, and I’m back off to sleep. I don’t remember a word of the podcast, but they work without fail to get me off to sleep.
  • Get exercise. I often cue up a podcast and go out on a run. I’m learning so much!
  • Get things done. I get into listening to my podcasts and find myself folding the laundry. It’s one of my least favorite tasks and yet I find [more] time for it when I’m listening to a podcast.
  • Family Time. Driving up to the mountains each weekend skiing we try to listen to a podcast together. Yup, the kids are interested and learning some really interesting things!

How to get your hands on some cool podcasts? Here you go…

  1. Download the podcast app for your smart phone. Just search “podcast” and it will come up in the iTunes or Android stores. It’s a free download.
  2. Do some research on podcasts you may like – try Google searching “podcast” and anything else [parenting, exercise, mindfulness, love, etc…]
  3. Some fun podcast ideas:
    1. Modern Love
    2. Mom and Dad Are Fighting – by Slate 
    3. Smart People
    4. NPR: Parenting
    5. TED Talks – Ideas worth sharing
    6. This American Life

What podcasts do you enjoy? 

103 Things You Can Do With Your Child

103 Things You Can Do With Your Child:*

1. Go to the library – stay for story time

2. Bake something, anything

3. Construct something with blocks or Lego’s

4. Read a book

5. Draw/Color together

6. Go window shopping

7. Host a play date with their favorite friend

8. Dress Up together

9. Go Sledding

10. Build something in the snow (fort, snowman)

11. Go swimming (indoor or outdoor)

12. Have a picnic (outside or on the living room floor!)

13. Listen to new music together

14. Visit a museum

15. Visit a Zoo

16. Visit a pet store

17. Write and mail a letter to someone special

18, Play a card or board game

19. Take a walk

20. Get out baby photos and talk about them

21. Sing Songs

22. Take a class together at local art center

23. Go roller or ice skating together

24. Tell stories about when your child was a baby

25. Hug/hold your child

26. Build a blanket fort

27. Tell your child what makes them special ( to you and others)

28. Teach/tell your child about your job – take them to work for a day if you can

29. Have a scavenger hunt (indoor or outdoor)

30. Go to a movie together

31. Visit your child at school

32. Dig out your year book and share about your experiences

33. Visit a nursing home or hospital

34. Finger Paint

35. Take pictures

36. Visit and learn about places in your neighborhood (fire station, police station, post office, dairy, etc.)

37. Clean out a room together (basement, attic, garage)

38. Work a puzzle together

39. Plan a vacation together – then GO!

40. Make S’mores

41. Build a bird house

42. Play a sport together

43. Make homemade pizza

44. Rake leaves and play/jump in them

45. Go on a hayride

46. Visit an apple orchard / pumpkin patch

47. Plant something

48. Have a water fight

49. Play hide and seek

50. Go to the state fair

51. Collect different fall leaves

52. Have a block party

53. Take a hike

54. Make puppets and put on a show for each other

55. Tell stories about your childhood

56. Attend athletic event

57. Make homemade ice cream

58. Learn about different cultures

59. Take flowers to a friend

60. Go wading in a creek

61. Go for a train ride

62. Go horseback riding

63. Climb a tree

64. Go camping

65. Have a family talent show

66. Draw a map and have a treasure hunt

67. Walk/play in the rain

68. Talk about feelings/emotions

69. Paint a picture by numbers together

70. Go to a theater performance

71. Complete a DIY project together

72. Wash the car

73. Play Frisbee

74. Pick up litter in the community

75. Fly a homemade kite

76. Jump rope

77. Exercise together

78. Discuss nutrition and the 4 basic food groups

79. Start a savings account – talk about budgeting and saving money

80. Write a story (draw illustrations together too!)

81. Go fishing

82. Visit a relative

83. Visit the neighbors

84. Go bowling

85. Dance party!

86. Play Simon Says

87. Have letter or color of the week and look for them together

88. Play “I Spy”

89. Act out a favorite story together

90. Listen to music and play homemade instruments together

91. Start a gratitude journal with your child – they can draw what they are thankful for

92. Let your child pick out the menu for a meal

93. Start a collection

94. Practice/teach something (reading, tying shoes, zipping zipper, sports, rhyming, sorting, telling time)

95. Sidewalk chalk

96. Go for a bike ride

97. Play pretend

98. Make a collage out of photos and/or clippings of their favorite things

99. Tell jokes

100. Spend time simply LISTENING to them.

101. Make a list of things you want to do together in the future!

102. Build a tree house or a fort  [my addition]

103. Create a fairy house at the base of a tree in your backyard  [my addition]

*Many thanks to the blog, hands free mama, for bringing this list to my attention and many more thanks to the blog, inspired to action, for the original post. You can read the original post here. 

Family Travel: What I [Re]Learned On My Trip to Sayulita, Mexico

Sorry for the silence from my end this past week. I just got back from a last minute trip to Sayulita, Mexico with my kids [8 & 10] to visit a friend and her kids. My friend and I were solo for the week with both husbands traveling, so why not go? The friend I was visiting lives life fully! She is always packing in more in a morning than I get done many days. We have traveled with the kids lots, but this trip was incredibly humbling as a parent. Since many of you will be traveling this summer I want to pass along my lessons learned. Here is what I [re]learned:

1. Make sure your kids wear a rash guard/swim top if they are going to be spending the first few days submerged in the ocean and out in the sun. My 10 year old go so burnt [even though I applied sun screen–Badger–multiple, multiple times!] that he blistered, was so uncomfortable, and I believe got sunstroke and landed us in the hospital for fluids. I felt SO bad. Actually I still do. So maybe the waterproof sunscreens do have a place in our family or maybe we will just stick to the rash guard.

2. Hydrate! Ensure your kids are drinking LOTS! Honestly this is so important when you are outside all day in the sun. Somehow you have to double your water intake on a vacation! So buy the kids the cold water. Let them drink the icy limonadas.

3. Make sure you have sufficient entertainment for the kids in case of travel delays! We were delayed over 12 hours and finally ended up spending the night in Houston where I didn’t get my kids to sleep until 12:45am. Our family loves mazes, books, crossword puzzles, art supplies, and the good old iPad. Make sure they are with you, not under the plane!

4. Bring snacks–even if it’s a short flight. Our scheduled 2+ hour flight to Houston where we caught a flight to Denver turned into an over 6 hour flight as we had to circle forever, then were diverted to San Antonio where they had us on the ground for hours without food. United Airlines did not have food on the plane.

5. Throw caution to the wind and just go! We made this trip happen really last minute. It was great to just get up and go. You can do it! It makes for such great memories for the whole family. You don’t have to go to Mexico. Check out the National Parks right here in Colorado, spend the night at a cabin in the mountains, go camping, etc.

6. Get the kids involved and into the culture. I made sure the kids learned a little bit of Spanish before we left. I would practice phrases and words. They had to order their own food and ask in Spanish. They loved it! It made them feel so proud!

So along with sun burnt skin, dehydration, being stuck on a plane all day and having to spend the night in Houston, Mexico was just as I remembered. The people are so warm and friendly. They love it when you speak Spanish. The ocean is magnificent and so welcomed from a Boulder, Colorado family. The kids felt heart broken by the street dogs and wanted to take every dog without a collar home. They tried new things–and loved them [food, jumping from 30 ft. cliffs, surfing, etc.]. We felt really safe. We walked the streets at night. We met all sorts of people. We would do it again in a heart beat! I hope we make it happen sooner than last time [It’s been 10 years since I have been to Sayulita].