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Archive for November, 2011

Handmade and Recycled Christmas Cards

Wednesday, November 30th, 2011
"Handmade Christmas Cards."

Make your Christmas cards with a lot of love!

It’s that time of the year again…one way to take the stress off of giving cards is to have your children get involved in the creation process!  Warm up the oven, throw some cookies in, and sit down at the table to make some special memories. This is easy and fun for the whole family!

All You Need:

  • Glitter
  • Old Christmas Cards
  • Glue Sticks
  • Stickers
  • Washable markers and crayons
  • Magazine clippings
  • Poster board
  • Paints
  • Sewing buttons
  • Laminate
  • Scissors
  • Old and New Photographs
  • Christmas Spirit!
"Snowflake Ribbon Decoration."

Ribbon will embellish any card with a personal touch

One of my favorite things to do is take out old Christmas cards that I received the previous year, cut out the front picture or maybe even use the inside script, then paste it to a square, star, or heart-shaped piece of poster board.  Then add in the details with features such as, a snowman sticker, a ribbon at the top, or Merry Christmas written in glittery silver and gold!  The sky’s the limit on creativity!

"Christmas Cards."

Recycle old Christmas Cards for a Green Christmas!

"Christmas art made by kids."

Your little picasso will love painting that snowman for Grandmother

Old and new photographs can also make a greeting card more personalized for family members that live far away!  Take out your glue stick and paste it on the front then laminate for that sheer effect.  Then decorate your card with all the bells and whistles.

"Holiday Card Making."

Making cards as a family promotes family unity

This is a great family tradition that your kids will look forward to year after year.  Turn on a little Christmas music and dance while you work to spark your creativity!  Not much of a dancer?  There’s always those cookies that are baking in the oven to sweeten the mood.  The important thing is your together, your doing something for others, and your in the Christmas spirit!  All that’s left is to slip them into the mailbox as a treat for friends and family.

"Mailbox."

Let your kids place them in the mail to get a feel for giving!

 

Blogger Laurali Star can be found on her blog, Charming Laurali Star, and on her site, The Damsel in the Attic, where she sells handmade and vintage clothing and accessories.  Another fab way to help reduce, reuse, and recycle!  Check it out!

Green Halloween® is a nationwide non-profit initiative started by mother-daughter team Corey Colwell-Lipson and Lynn Colwell. In 2010, Green Halloween became a program of EcoMom® Alliance and has events in cities across the U.S.

Cooking Up Fun With Kids!

Monday, November 28th, 2011

Looking for something fun to do with your kids? Try cooking together! Sure it can mean a little extra time and clean up when you have little “helpers” but it’s worth it. Of course this isn’t something that needs to happen for every meal, even if you just cook together once a week, it can create cherished memories and traditions that will last a lifetime! Getting your kids involved in preparing meals is a fantastic way to develop healthy eating habits. Kids are far more likely to dig into a new dish if they helped prepare it!

There are lots of things even very young children can do in the kitchen. Toddlers can wash and rip lettuce, preschoolers can measure and stir, and older kids can find recipes and help create meals.

Here are a few ideas that don’t require much “actual cooking” but they are fun recipes for kids!

Rainbow Fruit Sticks


Need a colorful, tasty, healthy item to bring to your next potluck or school event?!? Try these easy to make Rainbow Fruit Sticks!  They are a huge hit at any event with kids of all ages.

All you need is a collection of colorful fruit and some skewers! I like to use: Pineapple, Green Grapes, Cantaloupe, Raspberries, Honeydew Melon and Blackberries to give the skewers a nice rainbow effect!

1. Wash your fruit and let dry a little so that they are easy to work with.
2. Arrange your fruit and skewer them in the same order.
3. Display your Rainbow Fruit Sticks on a platter and get ready for the compliments!

Cinnamon Apple Slices


All you need is an Apple and some Cinnamon

This is an easy snack.  Wash and slice an apple then sprinkle with cinnamon.  Adds a yummy twist to eating apples!

Kids want to have fun…that’s part of what makes them such great people to be around! So when you want to get your kids on board for something, try making a game out of it! Look at your kitchen through the eyes of your little one and suddenly the salad spinner becomes a merry-go-round for lettuce and the sink turns into a car-wash for vegetable vehicles! Use mini cookie cutters to cut out fun shapes in fruits and vegetables. Get them involved and have fun!!

Happy Healthy Eating!
Kia Robertson

Kia Robertson is a mom and the creator of the Today I Ate A Rainbow kit; a tool that helps parents establish healthy habits by setting the goal of eating a rainbow of fruits and vegetables every day. Kia is passionate about creating tools that help parents raise healthy kids!

Creative Cooking Utensiles for Kids!

Monday, November 21st, 2011

When you have a little chef in your kitchen it’s fun to keep you eye out for cute and creative kitchen utensils that make cooking even more fun!  Cute aprons, colorful bowls, chefs hats are just some of the items you can get to help inspire your budding chef to enjoy the art of cooking!

Mice Measuring cups

We won these adorable mice measuring cups last year and these are the ONLY measuring cups Hannah will use because the other ones we have just aren’t as cute :)

We bought Hannah an apple shaped cutting board and a match red knife…she loves having her own special kitchen gear!

You don’t need to spend a lot of money or buy an abundance of kitchen gadgets for your kids, just a couple items is all it takes!  My daughter loves it when I ask if I can borrow her cutting board or any of her kitchen gear. I even enjoy cooking a little bit more when using her fun and colorful things!

Happy Healthy Eating
Kia

Kia Robertson is a mom and the creator of the Today I Ate A Rainbow kit; a tool that helps parents establish healthy habits by setting the goal of eating a rainbow of fruits and vegetables every day. Kia is passionate about creating tools that help parents raise healthy kids!

 

Funny Food Art

Wednesday, November 16th, 2011
Ingredients

Bill sets out healthy foods on display to begin making butterfly food art

Butterfly Food Art

The end result: Beautiful and nutritious butterfly snacks!

I had the chance to chat up Bill and Claire Wurtzel on the phone recently and discovered a whole new world of happy as we discussed how to add healthy food choices to your child’s classroom menu, how to make fun food art, and the great love story of Bill and Claire!  All you need:

  • Imagination
  • An array of healthy foods set out on display
  • A willingness to teach and do
  • An Open-Heart and Mind

The Love Story:

Bill and Claire

It turns out, love can be duplicated at breakfast!

Congratulations to Bill and Claire for celebrating their recent 5oth anniversary!  They are a warm and kind couple with a good cause that they want to share with the world.  Funny Food originated in the kitchen at their home in Manhattan, N.Y.C.  On Sunday mornings, Bill would make breakfast for Claire then create art couture from toast, fruits, eggs, and nuts all in hopes of getting a good laugh out of his wife.  About five years ago Claire prompted Bill to take pictures and the New York Times published them on March 2nd, 2011.  From love story to food story, Bill and Claire now have an up-coming Funny Food Book which will become available April 2012.

Healthy Food Workshops:

School Workshops 10-4

Bill and Claire have a message that they hope reach First Lady Michelle Obama in their quest for combating childhood diabetes and obesity as as getting children to eat a well-balanced breakfast.  Together they have visited New York City schools that have high rates of childhood obesity promoting interactive, hands on learning for kids.  They hold workshops in which they display nutritious breakfast from the different foods groups.  Claire, an educator, speaks up about nutrition while Bill models breakfast in his quirky, funny food way.  I was so inspired by my talk with them that I hope to transpire their ideas to Pinellas County Schools in Florida.  Want to make a difference?  Download copies and print copies to pass out at your next PTA meeting.

Plum Art

Bill Wurtzel's Anthroplum created for Green Halloween!

Mr. Appleman sits at the table for dinner

Let kids get creative by setting out a tray of pre-cut nutritious food shapes for art creation!

Mr. Pitaface

Take a pita and crack a smile! Who says you can't play with your food?

Egg Head

Take a pita, crack a smile, throw some eggs on top of her head for a funny hairstyle!

Penguin Breakfast

Take eggs and yolk and a lot of imagination to make a peggquin scene!

Angry Toast

Make sure your toast is gluten-free or whole-wheat for a healthy alternative

Bill’s Background:

Bill Wurtzel is a renowned guitarist and art director.  He improvises breakfast like a jazz solo!  Check out his musical abilities at Bill Wurtzel.


Pear Bassist

Bill places his love of jazz in this musically inclined Bosc Player!

"Bass Playing Griddle!"

Panjo

Granddaughter Daniela:

The proud grandparents mentioned their little granddaughter Daniela a few times and since she lives right next door, its the perfect time for Bebop to make her breakfast too!  She gets in on the breakfast action by creating her own works of art.  Check it out and then prep your counter for foodie fun with your own kids!

"Yellow Dolly."

Bebop Bill made this for Granddaughter Daniela for a healthy dessert

"4 year old Daniela Weiss."

4 year old Granddaughter Daniela Weis making her own art!

"Daniela's Foodie Art."

4 year old Daniela's fruity doll art!

"Daniela Weiss."

Yummy, healthy food art kids just love to design

"Daniela and Bebop."

You do the cutting, let your kids create the art!

"Hallowegg."

Daniela made this scary face for Green Halloween! Good job!

"Bones."

This Cantaloupe Skeleton was made especially for Green Halloween by Bill!

Look for Bill Wurtzel as we feature him in up-coming posts on Green Halloween!

Blogger Laurali Star can be found on her blog, Charming Laurali Star, and on her site, The Damsel in the Attic, where she sells handmade and vintage clothing and accessories.  Another fab way to help reduce, reuse, and recycle!  Check it out!

Green Halloween® is a nationwide non-profit initiative started by mother-daughter team Corey Colwell-Lipson and Lynn Colwell. In 2010, Green Halloween became a program of EcoMom® Alliance and has events in cities across the U.S.

Announcing: Winners of the 2011 “Spooky Faces” Photo Contest

Tuesday, November 15th, 2011

by Corey

Thank you so much to the families who entered our 2011 Spooky Faces Contest!

We received so many awesome photos and quotes (about what entrants find most spooky about an UN-green Halloween). It was nearly impossible to decide who should win!

But a contest is a contest, so we got down to it, and chose these entries as funniest, spookiest, cutest, most creative and best overall.

FUNNIEST

We loved 9-year-old Thomas Sokol’s silly spooky face! But, as Thomas’ mom, Stephanie, tells us the truth about what’s spooky about an un-green Halloween isn’t so funny.

“Thomas has autism and this is his attempt at a scary face. Having Autism means food allergies for lots of kids on the spectrum.  So the scariest thing about Halloween for him is all the chemicals in the candy. That’s how these chocolate lollipops ended up as play things rather than getting eaten. lol.”

We agree, Thomas! In this case, DO play with your food. Who wants to eat chemicals? Yuck.

Congratulations, Thomas, for winning great, green gifts from Revolution Foods and Good For You Girls.

 

SPOOKIEST

7-year old Luca Michallet may become a world famous special effects artist (and actor!) someday. He convinced his mom to help him use glue to make “decaying skin.” We think Luca hit the nail on the corpse, er- head with this one.

And we don’t know what’s scarier, his makeup or the spooky fact that, “”All the waste from cheap store costumes can be saved if we make our own!

Luca, your entry rocked. You are the lucky winner of gifts from Natural Luxe and Eli’s Earth Bars.

Congrats!

 

CUTEST

10-month-old Skyler Lehnick wins our prize for the cutest entry. Even with some spookiness on her face, she’s still utterly adorable and, as Mom, Anne, tells us, Sklyer is revealing “her menacing front teeth. Careful – she bites! Well…she gnaws.”

But what’s truly spooky about Halloween to Anne is “all the sugary treats eaten with abandon. I have been overweight for the past few years and struggle to lose the weight and the last thing in the world I want for my daughter is to grow up with weight problems. I don’t have a problem with my kids having an occasional sweet snack, but Halloween (as well as Valentines, Christmas, and Easter) overwhelms us with candy and sugar. There are a staggering number of children with health issues because they suffer from obesity and I want to do whatever I can to stop this for future generations.”

So true, Anne. Halloween is just the beginning! Starting now to create traditions that treat kids to healthy fun will make an impact for generations to come.

Congratulations on your win of gifts from Green Party Goods and Preserve, Jr.!

 

MOST CREATIVE

Christy Garrard of Issaquah, Washington doesn’t just have mad creative skills with her costume/hair/makeup/lighting and photo editing. She’s also poignantly poetic in her opinions:

Sugar gluttony = sluggish kids

Creative treats = inspired kids!

We couldn’t have said it better, ourselves. Christy, congrats on your prizes from Today I Ate A Rainbow and LiveGreene!

 

BEST OVERALL

Jasper Mark (5) is one groovy, green kid. We think Jasper’s adorable Munch-esque scream, while dressed as a Earth-lovin’ hippy is the perfect symbol for the spooky facts about being un-green on Halloween. Furthermore, Jasper highlights a concern we are working hard to educate families aboutFrankenfoods - which, according to mom, Lesli, “give him a belly ache and are bad for the earth.”

Jasper, thank you for your entry and congratulations on your prize package, which includes green goodies for your and your family from: Eat Cleaner, ecomom.com, Revolution Foods, Today I Ate A Rainbow, Natural Luxe, Eli’s Earth Bars, EcoPartyTime.com and ThredUp.

Thank you again to everyone who entered our 2011 contests! And congratulations to all for doing your part to make celebrating a healthy and green Halloween FUN!

What do YOU find most spooky about an UN-green Halloween?

(See contest rules for the details on specific prizes)