September 30, 2011

Driveway Letter Dash and outdoor game for learning letters

It's officially Fall and while temperatures are still in the 90's here in Texas, we are excited to get outside and enjoy the (slightly) cooler weather!  Today, I want to share with you a fun game we've been playing while we're outside, that gets the kids moving and helps them learn their letters!

Set up and rules are simple.  Using sidewalk chalk, draw a starting square at one end of your driveway.  Next, draw large letters (upper case or lower depending on what you're working on with your child) randomly along the rest of your driveway.  Space the letters out a couple of feet or so to allow for plenty of room to "Dash".  Draw your letters with the starting square as the bottom of the letter and the opposite point of your driveway as the top of the letter, so all letters have the same orientation, otherwise an "N" could be mistaken for a "Z".  (does that make sense?)

Your child begins in the starting square.   Then an adult (or big sister) shouts out the letters for him or her to dash to.  
When we first started playing the game, we came back to the starting square each time before running to the next letter so that he could view the letters in their correct orientation.  I also like to call out the letters closest to the starting square and then move towards the opposite end of the driveway so that as he runs to the next letter, he can read it right side up instead of side ways or upside down.  

Continue calling letters until your child has either mastered the alphabet or is too tired to run any more.  Kidding!
You can also play this game pushing trucks or tricycles to the letters.  Which is A for Awesome!
And if they get bored playing this way, I also like to switch it up and have them run from letter to letter shouting out the letters they land on.  Or switch places and let them shout out the letters for you to dash to!  Either way, they are learning and having F for FUN!
My son asks to play this game every time we are outside!  It makes me happy to help him enjoy learning his letters AND get out some of that never-ending boy energy!!

Have you been enjoying the outdoors lately?  Any favorite games you've been playing with the fam?  I'd love to learn more!

September 28, 2011

Young Lives

All moms know that parenting is the toughest and most important job in the world.  Most would also agree that no matter how prepared you are, whether you read all the What To Expect Books or bought every sleeping / colic / breastfeeding gadget out there, being a Mom is often challenging.  Now think about navigating motherhood as a teenager amidst all that teenage life entails.  Difficult doesn't begin to describe the life of a Teen Mom.  An exciting group is forming in New Braunfels, called YoungLives that is all about supporting and encouraging Teen Moms.

YoungLives is a ministry of Young Life especially for teen moms and their babies. Through traditional Young Life activities like club, camp and Campaigners, YoungLives mentors come alongside young women in a way we believe Jesus would do: with compassion, support and hope.

MentorsYoungLives teams up with mature Christian women to provide teen girls with timely encouragement, guidance and ongoing support. These caring women model Jesus Christ’s love by investing time and walking alongside them through their life situations.
YoungLives Camp
Teen moms can attend a YoungLives camp with their children at one of Young Life’s camps. Set in beautiful surroundings and packed with adventure, young moms are given the opportunity to experience all the fun their peers do. From the pool and zip line to the ropes course and the pamper pole, there is no shortage of excitement. During camp, the young women get a break from their everyday schedules — thanks to childcare volunteers who look after their children. Teen moms get the chance to relax, play and learn about God and His plan for their lives.
YoungLives Club and Other Activities
While teen moms are welcome at any Young Life activity, YoungLives is specifically tailored for them. Once a month, YoungLives club provides a place for teen moms to come together to have fun, build friendships and hear a message about real life and God’s love. Food, activities, music and childcare are a part of every club meeting.
Want to get involved?

If you have a passion for helping teen moms and the next generation, you can be involved with YoungLives in a variety of ways. We invite you to serve as a:

Mentor - Would you like to model Jesus Christ’s love by serving as a young girl’s friend and mentor? We’ll connect you with a teen looking for spiritual guidance, parenting tips and practical advice for daily living.
Committee Member - Maybe your strengths are more along the lines of vision-casting and administration. You can help develop the plans and polices that will enable the ministry to run effectively and grow.
Club Leader - Are you willing to get “silly” for the sake of the Gospel? Once a month, young moms and mentors get together for club and dinner. Leaders plan fun activities and help create a non-judgmental environment where girls can have fun and explore their faith.
Prayer Partner - Dedicated prayer partners are needed to help YoungLives pray for the direction of the ministry.
Donor - All YoungLives services are free to teen moms, so we depend on donor gifts to keep the ministry running. Your commitment as a financial supporter will guarantee countless young moms receive the support and guidance they need.

For more information contact:
Cari Leach

September 19, 2011

A Fair is a Veritable Smorgasbord... of Learning

Created with Pixlr
By: Lisa Johnson

As a local mom and tech junky, I felt the NB MOMS page would be a great joint venture for me to share the gift of learning while featuring the wonderful New Braunfels locale.

With the Comal County Fair quickly approaching, I decided to have it serve as the vehicle for my first official post. Being an app addict and blogger, I enjoy sharing new resources (especially free ones) with moms and educators alike. As we will be capturing fair and parade pics of our children and loved ones, it occurred to me that this could be a wonderful way to promote local events, share our favorite pics from the fair and parade, and leave with more than just a funnel cake stomach-ache. 

Thus, I am proposing a Funky Fair Pics Contest (see contest rules and tools below).

Funky Fair Pics Contest Rules!
  1. Snap your favorite Comal fair or parade pics of your kiddos:
    1. Use your phone and one of the cool free filter apps listed (or another app of your choosing) OR
    2. Snap pics with your own camera and create your fave filter effect with one of the free online tools listed (or another of your choosing)
  2. Submit them to:
    1. Include image as an attachment in the email.
    2. Include name of app or tool used as well as your name
    3. All submissions must be received by Monday October 3rd!
  3. All submissions will be entered in a drawing for a $25 iTunes gift card.
  4. The winner and my top 3 faves will be featured in the next blog post.

Created with Old Photo Pro

Funky Fair Pics Contest Tools!

Apps for Photo Filters/Effects:
Online Tools with Photo Filters/Effects:

Snap away and get your tech on!

For those of you non iPhone users, check out these top 10 free Droid apps for photo filters

September 18, 2011

Pumpkin Patches

Hard to believe it's getting to be that time of year! If visiting a pumpkin patch/farm is on your families list of must do's for the Fall than here are some for you to try.

September 17, 2011

Amazing Butterflies at the San Antonio Botanical Gardens

If you're little one is interested in butterflys or your looking for some family fun, this weekend is the opening weekend for a new exhibit at the San Antonio Botanical Gardens called Amazing Butterflies. I happened to see the commercial for this this morning and it looks awesome! Below is the link with complete information and also the same commercial. The exhibit is open from 10am-2pm for this weekend but will be at the Botanical Gardens through January 8th so if you can't fit it in this weekend you still have plenty of time to add it to your calendar.

$8  Adults
$5  Children (age 3 – 13)
$6  Senior Citizens  (65 and over)
$6  Active Military personnel, Retirees, and Reservists (with current ID; dependents not included)
$6  Students (with current ID)

Group rates for groups of 15 or more are available

Fees may be subject to change.
The San Antonio Botanical Garden is highly suitable for use by people of all ages and abilities and is wheelchair accessible.
No pets allowed.

If anyone does happen to go this weekend, take some pics and share them with us and let us know what you thought!!

September 15, 2011

A Closer Look at the Calendar

There are some great things to do starting today and throughout this weekend. They're on our calendar but here is a closer look with more info and links.

The Bisque Bistro has a fun event for kids to do after school today. Here is their description of the class:
"Kids ages 6 & up join us for this new and exciting after school art class! This month we are featuring clay magnets.
We will teach you how to use stamps to design a set of magnets to hang your school work! You can create words,
initials, family name or more! We will also be painting our magnets. Cost is $20 includes up to 10 magnets.
Must prepay to reserve your spot."
Bisque Bistro After School Art Class

Ladies Night
Every Thursday Night, join us from 7-10pm for an evening out! Bring a friend and you both pay a half price studio fee!
Refreshments allowed and encouraged.
Also at the Bisque Bistro, Mini-Monet.
"Join us on Friday mornings for this fun event. We will read a book and then paint a project related to the story.
Cost is $10. Reservations required. All ages welcome!
Friday, Sept 16th: Parade: We will read this cute book about parades in honor of our upcoming parade and then paint a horse."
Call the Bisque Bistro at
830.629.5475 to reerve your spot!

If your child needs to get out some serious energy than try out the Playnastics program at J&R Gymnastics.

"Toddlers through age 5 (pre K) may bring their parents to come and play together in the gym.  J&R Gymnastics is simply an awesome playgroup destination for pre-school children and their parent(s).   The gym has lots of equipment and mats to keep kids excited and active.  An indoor, climate controlled, facility has some real advantages for our area of weather extremes.  Event days and times by location:"
  • New Braunfels Gym:  Monday 11:30am - 1:00pm, and Friday 10:00am-11:30am

  • Member $5, Non-members $7 (multi-child discount)

    There's still time to register for this! You get a FREE day pass to the museum for participating but you must call and be registered!

    McKenna New BraunFit
    Play-For-A-Purpose Dodge Ball Tournament
    September 17

    This is also the last weekend for Schlitterbahn :(   Saturday they'll be open from 10-7pm and Sunday 10-6pm.
    Hope you all have a great weekend!

    th, 2011 at 1:00pm