Refinishing Furniture – Lessons I have learned

Have you ever seen something and thought to yourself, “I could do that!” A long time ago I had ideas on creating crib toys with black and white graphics – but no sooner did I have my prototype completed a toy company beat me to it! I also thought of play centers for kids that were both educational and fun – lost out on that too – remember Discovery Zone and Gymboree?! Now, I decided I am going to join an already established community of people who refinish used furniture and morph it to look vintage or retro. I have spent quite a bit of the past months scouring over Pinterest and online magazines. I have visited resale/consignment shops and creative art centers. I am gleaning from various resources a plethora of fun ideas.

Enough reading – time to sand, prime, and paint!


TIP 1: Collect common sense and useful resources on how to refinish furniture.

Tip: Not all furniture uses the same materials or steps in the process of refinishing. Taking an old broken cabinet from a garage sale and painstakingly going through the process of repair, preparation, painting and, finishing – takes time. It is not a few hours of just slapping on paint.

I decided to go to the ReSTORE, owned by Habitat for Humanity. This is how one can buy get gently used furniture that isn’t too worn and also give back to the community. Here I bought my “practice piece” for $10 and one that I am most likely will just resand and use wood stain finish.


TIP 2: When you pick a piece of old furniture to “redo” make sure it has “interest” value.

For me, this means that the furniture has some cool features such as interesting etching in the wood, an unusual design or shape, and/or hardware that is really groovy!

I got this piece during my second visit to a second ReSTORE and bought it because 1) it was made by Ethan Allen 2) The handle knob was cool and visually interesting. Scroll a bit more to see how I transformed this sad little table to something a really “groovy”!


TIP 3: Add some pieces to your collection, but remember you only have so much space and time.

I spotted the piece below on the left at an Estate sales website. The lady asked for $75. I offered $10. We settled on $15. Now it sits in my living room. Milk paint on the top with a polyurethane finish. Resanded and refinished the wood on the sides and painted the interior of the drawer. It is pictured here drying in our very used and crowded garage. I could have picked up three or four more pieces in the set. I opted not to do so because I wanted to be selective. One was enough.

Until the next day.

That is when I picked up the lovely side table with drop leaves (right). Sure it needs some TLC – but I can’t wait to “sand this baby”! (Aww I am talking “DYI” speak!)


TIP 4: Let other’s know about your new creative venture and maybe you will make your hobby profitable.

I have been working out of our garage. So far, just by having people walk by – I have sold two pieces. One isn’t even started yet!


Below is the little Ethan Allen table that was kinda “sad”. Slide the arrow in the middle of the images below to see the “before” and “after”.

Here are the steps:

  • Sand the top wood with very light sandpaper. Preferably using a small electric sander.
  • Paint a primer coat (white) over the wood and let dry completely.
  • I used Benjamin Moore paint (eggshell) in the color WROUGHT IRON. I painted three coats on this piece. Thanks to the people at my local ACE hardware for being great resources and my “support” team for picking great colors!
  • I then used a furniture wax for painted furniture to give it a bit of sheen.
  • The old knob, which I liked, but didn’t think matched well with the new look, was replaced with this one from Home Goods. (Came in a set of four) I think this new knob gives it a more contemporary look.
  • Lastly, I lined the inside of the drawer with contact paper that does not stick (in case the new owner doesn’t like it and wants to replace it).

Voila! In a day or so this table will be ready for a new home (obviously not completed yet!


gold, black and white knob
The knob

I will be posting on my Facebook Louise Sattler Consulting updates!

What If We Paid Teachers Like Reality TV “Stars”?

Imagine how the world would be if teachers were paid on the levels of trending models, reality TV show performers, or athletes! How every time a teacher walked up and down the classroom sparks of adoration would happen with whispers of encouragement from the students.

Now, of course, this may seem absurd. Even as I am writing this blog I am rethinking if this could EVEN be possible. But, I have written about the non-glamorous, but the valiant career of teaching before and will continue to write on this subject after this article is completed. No surprise to readers of this blog that I am passionate about giving recognition and thanks to the scores of teachers who work tirelessly on behalf of our children.

Before 2020, there were legions of people who thought that teaching was one of the “easiest” jobs one could have. After all, isn’t the job of educators to only work a few hours daily, and then they just “rinse and repeat”? Plus, there were the ongoing assumptions that summer break was indeed that – time off without any need to prepare, take coursework for continued certifications, and etc. Newsflash – good teachers never stop wanting to improve their skills to help their students.

It took a pandemic to change many minds about the “art of teaching”. Newfound respect was formed about the real work involved with teaching our kids. So many “Ah-Hah moments” happened when parents were thrust into dual roles. It was tough. But, with every difficult lesson comes an increased level of understanding and insight. I hope that one of the lessons learned was that teachers are not paid commensurate with their true worth. They should be revered like our “supermodels” and “elite athletes”!

Yes, this is a huge shift in our collective psyche. And, probably wouldn’t even be a consideration if it weren’t for the Covid 19 pandemic. I simply ask that you please allow this blogger to dream of a world where this is possible.

For many who are reading this article, you have assumed the role of teacher this year as a pandemic brought virtual or hybrid education to your home front. I commend you for your efforts and I bet you were much more successful than you believed. And, for the teachers who made the best of a horrific situation – kudos as you the true “reality STARS”!

Thank you for reading. Respectful comments always welcome below.


Read more on this subject here

Lists of Places for Family and Solo Travel that are Accessible and Inclusive

I. Love. To. Travel. And, as you probably know from reading this blog – I enjoy sharing my travel experiences. I often say, “Travel is simply taking educational opportunities – on the road”.

However, travel can be much more difficult if you have barriers – such as those experienced by individuals with physical, mental, and/ or sensory challenges. I have noticed establishments that simply do not provide accessible or inclusive environment. While many places are demonstrating a better understanding of how to make their venues more welcoming – there is a lot of room for improvement.

I would like to showcase the organizations that get it RIGHT. So, I wrote a letter to all with links and lists for helping you plan a great vacation.


Dear Readers,

I am excited for you or your family to be venturing away from your home to discover various parts of the United States. There is so much to experience and learn from travel. I personally find the value of travel to be an extension of what happens within the classroom. It is my hope that my information below will help you to plan for a safe and fun trip. Please note that I am one of many who travel and blog – so be sure to check out other articles on this topic.

Why am I writing this letter to you? I am a frequent traveler, school psychologist, and a parent. I seem to be hyper vigilant for looking at situations through multiple lenses. Does this hotel have good accessibility for people with mobility issues? Can a person safely cross this street if blind? Does the venue offer interpreters for the Deaf or sensory accommodations for a person on the autism spectrum? And, so on.

It is because I have the utmost admiration for families who love to travel together that I want ALL to have a great experience, including equal access and inclusion.

PLAN!!! While a quick spontaneous trip can be fun, don’t underestimate the value of good preparation. Here are some tips that may be helpful –

There is very little consistency among hotel chains, restaurants, or theme park attractions when it comes to accessibility and being inclusive to all. So don’t forget to pack a hefty dose of patience along with your toothbrush!

Hint 1: Travel to family friendly places, especially if this is your first trip. If you are a solo traveler consider group travel to places that cater to large and diverse crowds.

Many people cite the Disney theme park properties as the most “special needs” friendly in the United States. And, I have witnessed that around the globe, too, Disney gets it right – most of the time. As does Disney Tokyo, Disney Paris, etc. They are a big corporation with much money and resources at their disposal. They also are dedicated to educating their staff about inclusion. So, I tip my proverbial hat off at Disney and their employees.

Here is the downside. Disney theme parks are super expensive for most families. Often people save years to enjoy a week with “the mouse”. Look for bargains when you decide to visit Disney properties. See if any organizations you belong to (or the grandparents) offer discounted tickets or places to stay.

Discount tickets for Disney parks have been available at these places (and hope they are still there!)

Once you have planned your trip, consider connecting with Disney representatives to learn about accommodations in the park. Here are two Disney guides for families who have family members with autism and or cognitive disabilities.

Disney theme parks provide for their guests this disability access document that is chocked full of pertinent information.f

Also, there are additional parks and attractions that offer access and disability information. Their links can be found on the list below. Note that these places try to make the information easy to read – but sometimes these guides can be daunting. So, be sure to read ahead of time during your “planning” the trip phase.

Roadtrippers magazine also listed some of the most accessible parks in the United States. Here is their excellent article.

For your consideration: I am a big fan of using a reputable (in person) travel agency for planning vacations that are more than just an overnight and involve a lot of people and “moving parts”.


Next… packing for your trip. It is impossible to bring all the contents of your home with you – but in the case of a child or adult with special challenges you have to be extra careful to remember key items. Not only should you bring all the items for daily living needs (plus extras). But be sure to add to your suitcase medications for the time you will be gone – and additional in case of an unexpected extended stay. You list also should include some comfort items are those that can make a difference with your stay. Such as a night light, a small fan to block out noise from other rooms, and personal soaps or shampoos for those with sensitive skin or adverse reactions to smells. Noise cancelling headphones, an iPad or laptop, and favorite pillow or blanket(s) can make all the difference in the world. (Especially if someone uses a weighted blanket for comfort.) Also, bring snacks and drinks that are “must haves” for your family members.

Tip: Call ahead when making your hotel reservation. Depending on your family’s needs – ask for a room that makes your life easier. Need to be closer to the elevator – just ask. Need a handicap accessible room? Request it. Need a key with braille? Ask them for that, too. Ask if they have a room with special lights and adaptive equipment if you are traveling with someone who is Deaf. And, if you have a child or adult who is vocal – ask for a room that is more secluded from other guests so you don’t feel that you may be disturbing them.

Also, consider bringing a door alarm if you have concerns of elopement (fleeing). I travel with the STEP OFF alarm for personal security. Yet, it also is great to keep those who wander (including people with Alzheimer’s) safe.

If you are a solo traveler consider using a reputable travel agency that has knowledge about opportunities for travel that accommodates people with unique challenges. Deaf travel agencies are also available.

I did a little research on this subject and found these links to help (However, use your due diligence, as well.)

*Inclusive Experiences for All – IAAPA

*National Parks – ASL interpeters, Captioning and mor

HAVE A SUGGESTION? Comment below!

Closing words – I hope this post helps those who are ready to travel again. May you have a safe and fulfilling journey!

After 10 Years I am STILL a Cancer WARRIOR GODDESS!

January 5, 2011 I spent 7 plus hours under the knife at Johns Hopkins Hospital to remove Stage 3 thyroid cancer throughout my neck. My hubby can give you a play by play as how that day went through his lens. How he waited all day to hear I was done and instead received lots of medical updates- hour after hour. He also can tell you he was one of the first to arrive in the JHH waiting room and the last one to leave that day. As for me, I remember very little except being asked upon my waking to recall anything I said from the morning before they dosed me with heavy duty anesthesia. My answer: “I am STILL a cancer warrior goddess?”. The nurses and doctors laughed and looked relieved. I laughed with a very froggy throat, too. Apparently, my talking was a sign that my vocal chords were still working, albeit very raspy. “Top-Doc” wasn’t too sure that would be the case – so my declaration – was considered the evidence of medical success.

Related: Warning signs of thyroid cancer: click here

Ten years later and countless tests, trips back to Hopkins for follow-up exams, and blogs later, I remain vigilant with my health and a bit of a crusader for thyroid wellness of others. I also recognize that I have had my own challenges after ten years. My voice still gets raspy and there have been times when I simply couldn’t talk for days, weeks or months. (Once again proving that knowing sign language is a skill we all should have!) Plus, a good head cold can put me down for the count for a week or more. I don’t have the immune system of most folks and that makes Covid 19 really really sucky! And, losing the weight I have gained is my biggest challenge.

Yet, I do have an immense sense of gratitude for the medical professionals who have cared for me since my diagnosis late 2010. I also want to reiterate my “mantra” – be your best advocate. I had ZERO of the usual red flags for thyroid cancer except for weight gain. Rapid weight gain! I was told it was menopause. It wasn’t. So, if you feel something is “amiss” – then you are more than likely correct and should keep seeking answers until you feel better or more at ease.

No blogger should post without taking time out to stop and thank their audience. That includes me. I want to extend a heartfelt THANK YOU to all of YOU. For more than a decade many of you have read this blog, commented and shared. You helped to educate others and also yourselves. I appreciate you. I pray for your health and hope that all of us have better days ahead.

If you are new to my blog and wonder what the heck I am talking about?… Well … here are links to get you started to learn about my journey and perhaps find some nuggets of help for you, too. If you are a recurring reader – again thank you and enjoy the re-runs below.

2010: Hello, Now Go Away!!

January is Check the Neck Month!

Dear New Thyroid Cancer Patient

Remission

My Year of Learning How to Kick Cancer to the Door

TWO YEARS LATER… My journey with Thyroid Cancer

My annual reminder that I survived cancer

Six Years Later

Lucky 7 – Life after a thyroid cancer diagnosis

9 Years – Post Thyroid Cancer Diagnosis

ASL video on my cancer experience

Twitter Scarves

This blog is dedicated to all the wonderful healthcare professionals who have helped me during my cancer journey and have supported and cared for the the health needs of others.

Also, dedicated to my friends who have experienced “lumps” in their roads and have survived with grit and grace. You are my inspiration.

Holiday Gift Recommendations: Games so fun your kids won’t know they are learning! #Giveaway

Each year I write a post with my list of ideas for holiday gifting. I try to skew to gifts that give back to charity or are educational. I also like to list gifts that are provide “random fun”. This year I am writing three blogs – three lists full of holiday gift ideas. The first one is dedicated to educational toys and games. AND… there is a GIVEAWAY. Simply comment below to be entered to win the Griddly Games 5 STONES game by midnight Pacific Time December 13, 2020. See rules below.

Two things you need to know…

First, if I recommend a product or charity I do so without any payment from the company or organization. A few companies sent samples and they will be donated to families who are struggling due to Covid 19 or teachers.

Secondly, I welcome your suggestions. Simply add your holiday gift ideas in the comment section below.

From Griddly Games comes a very unique ensemble of ” just add…” products and others that use word and numerical reasoning. I must admit, as an educator, they had me at their descriptions of being products focused on STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math). All of these kits are user friendly (younger children will require supervision, as can be expected).

CALLING ALL TEACHERS AND HOME EDUCATORS – CHECK OUT VERY FUN STEAM ACTIVITY KITS FOR THE HOLIDAYS FROM GRIDDLY GAMES.

just add EGG.(ages 5 and up, parent/ teach guidance required) – Comprised of more than 10 interactive activities with “egg-speriments” included in this very fun egg shaped box. This game is filled with everything from molding clay, crayons, glue and even corn syrup! Lots of hours of fun are to be expected and all need is a child, their imagination, a parent or teacher to supervise and EGGS!

Like science AND art? Then check out just add BAKING SODA! You can make at least 20 different projects – including your very own bath bombs, volcano or holiday ornaments with this very visually fun and interactive kit! I like that this kit uses a lot of visual motor perceptual skills and helps to build fine motor skills.

Be sure to check out ALL the just ask kits here. Great prices! Find also on Amazon!


WISE ALEC™️ EARNED an A++

WISE ALEC ™️

Children’s Products) If you enjoy trivia games – then you will LOVE Wise Alec(TM). Meant for family night or classroom game time – WISE ALEC incorporates mind games such as brain teasers and tongue twisters with physical activity. Over 1000 questions are included in the game box. The game is geared reinforce elementary school curricula covering the subjects of History, Science and Spelling!

Need easy questions for your first grader – no problem. Want to challenge your fifth grader? With Wise Alec you can do that, too! And when you pick a STUDY BREAK card get ready to MOVE (and earn points for doing so!) Excellent game and great for those who need support with literacy skills, too! Supper fun and creative. I give Wise Alec a solid A++


SHOW ME THE KWAN!

When I first saw this game in the box I started hooting and hollering! A WORD game!! Plus it was very reminiscent of Scrabble® and Boggle®. SHOW ME THE KWAN also had many components of categorizing games such as Scattergories®. This game is Intended to be played with a large group (you can have up to ten players). I envision this game as great for classroom use, “Covid 19” education pod groups (home education) and parties with tweens and teens.

“KWAN” takes a bit of a learning curve to get the rules down – but once you do – watch out! This is a fast paced game for letter/wordsmiths! Small enough to bring along to family and friend gatherings.


PUZZLES! PUZZLES PUZZLES!

There are several reasons for parents to buy puzzles this holiday season. How many gifts can teach history, art, geography and much more for a fraction of the price of an electronic gaming system? Plus, kids can learn foundational literacy skills.

First, when you assemble a puzzle you need organizational and visual discrimination skills. Some people like to separate pieces by color, or by shape. Others are very focused on the cover picture and organize their puzzle pieces section by section (frame vs. inside, for example).

Did you know that when you assemble a puzzle you also are training your eyes to see how “parts become a whole”? Puzzles, believe it or not, can help teach children how letters become words and words become a paragraph?!

Check out ENDLESS GAMES !

Endless Games is a company that you can access online or by driving to your nearest Kohl’s. If you are a lover of puzzles AND Broadway you will FREAK at their PLAYBILL Presents puzzle! Hours of fun for under $15!


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PEACE ON EARTH

This is a beautiful 1000 piece puzzle spotlighting the artistic talent of Malcom Watson. Your whole family can linger over the dining room table as you complete this puzzle that measures almost 20″ by 26″ when finished.


Master Pieces – beautiful quality puzzles.

I received this CATOLOGY puzzle. While not a huge fan of cats (more of a dog lover) – this puzzle was simply lovely and the poster inside was a nice bonus feature!


More Favorite Puzzles with Educational Value

White Mountain Puzzles. Their Nostalgic / Vintage Collection are my favorites. These puzzles are great for multi-generational play. Grandparents and parents can educate children and young adults about life before the new Millennium! The pieces are thick and that is good for young and old fingers, alike. White Mountain Puzzles are POPULAR – so be sure to check back if ones on your wish list are out of stock. Website and Amazon.


Uncommon Goods offers novelty puzzles with political and historical themes. This VOTES FOR WOMEN is a circular pattern.

GIVEAWAY! GIVEAWAY! GIVEAWAY!

GIVEAWAY- the Griddly Games new edition: 5 STONES! Open to all United States residents who are 18 years of age or older. Must comment on this post on or before Sunday, December 13, 2020, 11:59pm Pacific time. No employees or family member associated with Griddly Games nor LouiseSattler.com may enter. One winner. Will be announced here on the blog AND via email. No substitutions.


Coming up in the next blog: Giving with a Purpose!

Learn Online with Cudoo

There are positives and negatives to every situation. Such is the case of being “stuck” in quarantine due to COVID-19. The negatives is the lack of being with loved ones, friends and in public places. The positive is discovering new ways to keep the mind active. CUDOO is a very big positive.

CUDOO is a user-friendly online learning system with a wide variety of course topics. From foreign languages, accounting, social media and even engineering – you can expand your knowledge base with very little financial cost outlay.

After communicating with the company, who asked me to “test drive” their product, I decided to take advantage of looking at their version of American Sign Language instruction. I opted for the BUNDLE and started my way through the various lessons.


First Impressions

The dashboard and menus are very easy to negotiate. I appreciated that there was considerable content, but not too wordy or boring, about the nuances of sign language. Terminology used was common and very basic – perfect for beginners.

Clear examples are offered with each vocabulary word – both as an illustration and as a video. And, there are quizzes at the end to help with comprehension. I purposefully missed a couple and was sent back to “relearn” before moving on or getting my certificate.

Let’s chat about the certificate! It is an excellent feature as having proof of completion of a course that allows a student to add to their resume, bring to a current employer as proof of skill development and initiative or just have bragging rights!


See for yourselves!

Sometimes photos and video is a much better “explainer” than words, especially when it comes to sign language. So, I created this video to help you see the program “in action”.


There are a few things that I would recommend for this online American Sign Language course. My top request would be for additional learning levels to address more advanced ASL concepts and vocabulary. Also, games would be a fun addition or suggestions for creating games for hands on learning!


START LEARNING WITH CUDOO! A Special product link has been set up for my readers: https://dealspotr.com/getcode/Y9ezz The Product Code: LOUISESATTLER

Cudoos is priced very reasonably for individuals and families. The ASL bundle that I reviewed has a price tag of $49. As a reviewer, my disclaimer is that I received a complimentary subscription. However the opinions expressed here are 100% of my own and without input from the company.

To learn more about CUDOO go here: Cudoo.com

“STAY AT HOME” Educational Resources for Students and their Parents/ Caregivers

Due to the Corona Virus (COVID 19), parents have been given one of the biggest challenges of their lives – teaching their children in the absence of teachers, structured curriculum and school support. That means parents, regardless of their own careers, are now home assuming the role of their child’s / children’s teacher.

Educators and parents all have one goal – to keep the learning curve going up while the COVID 19 curve declines.

Parents – don’t worry! I have compiled a long and comprehensive list of educational resources for you. Some of these links are chocked full rich content. One link may lead you to dozens more – so take your time and peruse! Good luck and feel free to comment below if you have additional websites you think we can all benefit from or just wish to comment!


STUDENT and PARENT/ CAREGIVER RESOURCES

Education.com

Education.com – There is a way for teachers of preschoolers to third grade to give their students a code to have entry to chosen lessons. Favorites are this LEARNING GAME LINK.

Computer coding also is a favorite part of Education.com and can be found HERE


ABCTeach.com

ABCTeach.com is a favorite of mine! They have support for preschool, elementary, middle and high schoolers. Including calculus. There are some freebies, but for $20 you can have a year-long membership. Click here to discover more about this terrific website (And you may find some familiar Signing Families content under Sign Language Learning)


California Department of Education- Resources for All Students, All States

The CDE has put together a comprehensive list of online learning opportunities and support. This site is GREAT! Their FREE Educational tab is chocked full of interactive and very helpful resources. Seriously, this site can be an answer to a parent’s prayers for help from educators worldwide! Click here to get to the site.

Click here for the CDE super – charged resources.


PBS Learning Media

PBS offers a division of their company dedicated to direct education known as PBS Learning Media .

For younger children, there is PBS KIDS

*** THE PBS App Store is extensive and has a lot of great independent learning opportunities.

YouTube

YouTube is no joke! There is some serious curriculum support and teaching happening on this social channel. Amazing teachers are available and many have offered opportunities for continued learning via their websites.


Rosetta Stone – FREE to students

Rosetta Stone has posted a free subscription to students due to the crisis. Learn more here.


Library of Congress – FREE Resources

The Library of Congress is chocked full of information. This TAB leads you to free photos and images for you to use – including learning projects.


FOR TEACHERS, PARENTS and CAREGIVERS

EDUTOPIA

LIBRARY OF CONGRESS

NATIONAL ASSOCIATION FOR SCHOOL PSYCHOLOGISTS

CHADD– Children and Adults with Attention Deficit Disorder

KIDLUTIONS – Solutions for tough problems by Wendy Young, Counselor


LOS ANGELES PUBLIC LIBRARY – FUN RESOURCES

There are a lot of resources at this link for reading, STEM and more! Click here


LANGUAGE ARTS

RESOURCES GALORE! This is a treasure trove of learning opportunities from the Manhattan Beach School Distric. Click here.

Scholastic Magazine:

There is a plethora of reading resources on the Scholastic site.


MATH INSTRUCTION

Math Planet

We are Teachers – Math help from teachers

Online Math Learning – lessons

For Students with Special Needs

TIME MAGAZINE (click for link)

10 Tech Hacks for Struggling Readers

Time4Learning

A lot of activities and resources for our students on the spectrum.


ADAPTIVE GAMES – STAGES LEARNING

These games are adapted to children with unique challenges. Click here and fine motor exercises can be found here.


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More Ideas to Keep Busy When You are Stuck at Home!

Hello All! What A WEEK! I hope you are all healthy and staying safe from COVID 19 (Corona Virus).

I am planning to continue posting about activities / online events that you can do to keep you and your loved ones busy during this Corona Virus pandemic crisis. Many of the sites listed below are educational and appropriate for students of most ages. Several were chosen to help reduce the boredom factor being experienced by teens and adults.

Part one of my “boredom busters” was published earlier this week and can be found here.

You will find the details and articles associated with thel suggestions below where you see CLICK HERE

Have a suggestion? Add it to the comment section – (Remember keep it G-rated!)


GUESS WHAT! You can dance with Debbie Allen! Instagram Live – Use @MsDebbieAllen to follow along

Wednesdays at 4p/ Eastern 1pm Pacific


PBS rocks with concerts, movies and more! Watch and CLICK HERE for some of your favorites for FREE!


YMCA 360- CLICK HERE On-Demand Videos


Stream BROADWAY shows for a fraction of the cost ($8.99 a month) CLICK here


BRAVO to Billboard for their LIVE AT HOME CONCERT SERIES. They have amassed quite a number superstars to join their online concert series. Click Here is the link to learn more


John Legend … Coldplay … Death Cab for Cute … Indigo Girls … and more


Listen to many A-list musicians who are “self-quarantined” but want to bring a bright moment to music-lovers. CLICK here for the scoop



The Grammy Museum is offering Education at Home opportunities! Click here for info



FREE BOOKS from this VIRTUAL LIBRARY!! No hitch. Click here


CLICK HERE: More suggestions from USA Today (100 Things to Do…)

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Home? Bored? Check out this list of ideas to keep your family happy…

I, like everyone else, cannot wait for the ghastly COVID 19 (Corona Virus) to be GONE! And, like many people, I have chosen to self-quarantine. But, let’s face it- one day in the house is fine. Two or three days is not optimal. But a week, two or three? Now I have issues! I figure I am not alone manifesting a fear of the” boredom factor”. Surely there are parents who are trying to rack their brains to come up with enough activities to keep their kids busy!?! As an educator, parent and individual who bores very easily, I decided to help others by searching online sites for activities that could be fun while we wait out this “CORONA- geddon”.

Below you will find my list and I would LOVE if you add a link(s) at the bottom or an idea on how to stay busy during these challenging times. (Remember, this is a family blog – so play “nice” with your suggestions.)


1. 12 Famous Museums that have VIRTUAL tours

Or check out these 500 Museums and Galleries



2..Live ZOO CAMERAS:


San Diego:  https://zoo.sandiegozoo.org/live-cams
Houston:  https://www.houstonzoo.org/explore/webcams/
National Zoo:  https://nationalzoo.si.edu/webcams
ZOO CAMERAS AROUND THE WORLD: https://zoocamerasaroundtheworld.com/list-of-zoos-with-webcams/


3. Love to cook and want to learn? Here you go…


TASTY – for kids and parents https://tasty.co
Cooking Channelhttps://www.cookingchanneltv.com/videos/players/full-episodes-player
Cook with Kids: https://www.foodnetwork.com/fn-dish/recipes/2015/11/diy-baked-potato-bar


4. This channel is a HOW TO video channel for people who love to exert their creative juices: https://createtv.com


5.  Travel without leaving home:


Travel with Angel (who I know and is so awesome!) https://angelstravellounge.com/about/
Rick Steveshttps://www.ricksteves.com
Virtual Travel: Balloon Ride: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2KT0rn03-tU
New Mexico Balloon Rallyhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QGAMTlI6XxY


6. Looking for excellent videos to watch: TEDx / Ted Talks are amazing:

 https://www.youtube.com/user/TEDxTalks/playlists 

I love Brene Brown – check her outhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iCvmsMzlF7ohttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=psN1DORYYV0https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Evwgu369Jw


7. Family time:
Make a piñata: https://www.wikihow.com/Make-a-Piñata
Real crafts for real good gifts: https://www.sixcleversisters.com/12-diy-gifts-that-your-family-and-friends-will-love-to-get/
A little plug for learning sign language:  LouiseSattler.com or  Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCF8KwJbRq_K05m6fezHv9_g
And be sure to check out signed stories on YouTube for fun:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCrg6w933BuOQrL7xTtRphmw/videos


8. Entertainment/ Concerts
S. Korea orchestra: https://qz.com/1817876/korea-offers-free-concerts-online-during-coronavirus/
Peabody school of music: https://www.classicfm.com/music-news/videos/student-orchestra-impromptu-concert-coronavirus/
In fact, a lot of events were cancelled so people posted their “dress rehearsals’, etc. Here: https://twitter.com/hashtag/heyjenlookatme?src=hashtag_click


9. Just for fun:


The SCOTT QUINTUPLETS/ FAMILY  is some of the most fun video watching I do all day;  Take a break and watch their whole Quint journey here:  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCKMT-NFpYshJT9v-Fd6tmrw

Photo: Scott Family


Other ideas!

10: Jigsaw puzzles – Amazon has a huge selection including some that used RETRO photos and memorabilia. I love the ones by WHITE MOUNTAIN best – such as the classic books puzzle below!


But wait… there is more…

11. Lego building for kids and grown-ups! Ideas can be found here from LEGO and on this website .


12: Lastly, SCRAPBOOK and PHOTO ALBUMS. NOW is the time to organize your photos, create family scrapbooks and enjoy reminiscing! Need ideas? Simply jump over to Pinterest.com for TONS of examples and DIY projects. Also, keep in mind that Snapfish and Shutterfly are both offering HUGE discounts for photo projects.

SNAPFISH COUPON

Tag you are it! Your turn to suggest how to keep busy when you are “stuck at home”.