City of Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks Rocks For Families!

Want to get your family outdoors more? The City of Boulder’s Open Space and Mountain Parks provides excellent programming for families! I have lived in Boulder long enough that I have very little perspective on other communities’ programs to help get kids and families outdoors. But I know we have an amazing resource in the Open Space and Mountain Parks!

If you are looking for ways to get outdoors with your family check out their Nature Hikes and Nature Programs. These programs are really varied. Here are some upcoming opportunities to give you an idea of what they offer on a regular basis. Jump on board. Get outside. Have fun!

  • Fishin’ Fun When: Friday, July 26, 2013, 5:00 PM. Join ranger naturalist Arian Hampel for a two-hour excursion to to teach kids the basics of fishing on OSMP.
  • Stars of a Summer Night When: Saturday, July 27, 2013, 9:00 PM. Join Naturalist Dave Sutherland and a large telescope for a trip through the universe!
  • WabWabi-Sabi: Finding Beauty on OSMPWhen: Saturday, August 3, 2013, 9:00 AM. Join naturalist and artist Jane Larson on this easy hike and explore Wabi-Sabi, the Japanese aesthetic of “the beauty of things imperfect.
  • Calling All Rockhounds!. When: Saturday, August 3, 2013, 9:30 AM. Nature For Kids Parents: Calling All Rock Hounds! Search for rocks and minerals! Take a fantasy journey back in time. Ages 6 and up.

Open Space and Mountain Parks offers more than ongoing programming for the community. Check out their fun pages for kids too. They include outdoor oriented jokes, bingo pages, etc… Here is a the Wildlife Decoder:

Screen Shot 2013-07-23 at 6.36.30 PM

To learn more about all Open Space and Mountain Parks is doing in our community head to their website here.

Origami Is An Amazing Art Form!

Origami is a beautiful, meditative practice that is great for kids and adults alike! If you love origami, or you don’t know anything about it, you will love this video of the unfolding of a complicate origami rhino!

Or watch the making of an origami koi fish:

If you are inspired to create origami consider taking a look online for some great tutorials. I would start with YouTube. There is also a group of origami folders in Boulder: Boulder Folders. They offer origami training and practice at the Boulder Public Library from time to time. The next Boulder Folders is June 11, 2013 from 6:30 to 8:30pm. For more information on that event click here.

Origami is a beautiful, meditative practice that is great for kids and adults alike!

Boulder Families Kid’s Review: Boulder Opera’s Production of La Cenerentola [Cinderella]

Screen Shot 2013-05-07 at 2.32.01 PMIn April, Annelies was selected as the Boulder Families Reviewer for Boulder Opera’s production of La Cenerentola. A BIG thanks to Annelies for this thoughtful review!

Hi, my name is Annelies and I’m 11 years old. BRAVO! BRAVA!

What Did You Review? I went to go see Cinderella but in Italian. It was actually called La Cenerentola and it was all opera. There was no one speaking with real voices. In opera they sing really fast and really loud.

What Was It About? It was about Cinderella trying to go to the ball and she does get to go and at the end Cinderella gets married to the prince.

What Was Your Favorite Part? My favorite character was the evil sister Clorinda. She could sing the loudest and she was really funny. She came to the audience and walked around and sang really loud and almost sat on a dad.

What Surprised You About This Opera? All the singers had very different opera voices and I thought that they would have the same voice.

Would You Recommend It To A Friend? I would recommend it to a friend if they liked opera or music or funny plays. It was boring in some parts but still good.

Anything Else You Want To Say? There were a lot of kids even a lot of little kids and they could dance in the aisles. There were also good cookies, cupcakes and water for sale.

If you are interested in upcoming events by the Boulder Opera Company, please visit the Boulder Opera’s website.

DIY: Finger Paints & Play Dough

I love making things myself that I would normally purchase. These are simple, fun to get the kids involved with, and your kids can literally eat what they produce–though I don’t recommend it. Use baby food jars or other recycled jars to hold your paints and play dough. Make sure to get the kids involved mixing and adding colors.

Finger Paints

Younger kids: Just get in there and get messy. Paint outside so you can just rinse the kids off with the hose. Try making patterns with uncooked pasta, nature items such as sticks, rocks, etc. Paint rocks to put in the garden–these are super cute! Encourage your young kids to play with mixing colors. Have them guess what color they will create and then give it a try.

Older kids: Try making block prints [older kids can carve a piece of wood or get a block from Michael’s for carving] or veggie prints [experiment cutting veggies such as celery and use those veggies as blocks for printing]. Work with older kids on making their own color wheel by making a circle [or any other shape], breaking it into fractions. Color in 3 fractions with primary colors [blue, yellow, red], then work to blend these colors in the fractions between them. Create a color wheel.

Play Dough

Play dough is so super easy to make! The kids love it and you probably have all the ingredients you need right now in your house.


1 cup flour
1/2 cup salt
1 cup water
1 Tablespoon oil
2 teaspoons cream of tartar
Food coloring by drops


1. Combine all ingredients in a pan and stir.  Cook over very low heat, stirring until a ball forms.

2. Add food coloring and mix thoroughly until desired color.

3. Cool on foil. Store in covered container.

#DIY #Boulder #Kids

Friday Musings: Deals, Project Ideas, and Print Media Suggestions

Family Friendly Deals: These are some great deals happening right now!

Livingsocial screaming deals: Punch cards to Om Time Yoga [$32/5 classes] and Tickets to Denver Firefighters Museum [$9/4 tickets].

Weekend Project Ideas: Make something together this weekend!

Create Nontoxic Paint to make and use with your kids. This looks like a really fun project to do and then the kids get to go outside and paint the driveway or sidewalk. I have not tried it, but I cannot wait to try!

Make Pinwheels with your kids. Engaging project for the 6 to 10 year old set. These are fun to make & use.

Family Print Media Ideas: I love these two parent/family oriented magazines!

Taproot Magazine is the new creation of Amanda Soule, a creative parent and blogger [check out her blog!]. I have to give a shout out to Brain, Child Magazine, one of my all time favorites, This offers smart literature and research on a wide range of parenting topics.

Upcoming Give Away: I am so excited to be collaborating with a very old friend!

Look out for a give away by Mountain Mama in the near future! They have a great line of maternity technical wear and the most adorable baby gear. I am psyched about this give away!