• The Traveling Walnuts Archive

    Tis the season to pack up the kiddies and hit the road. Of course, traveling with little ones is never as carefree as one might wish (just thinking about having to schlepp all that baby gear is exhausting enough!). If for some reason or another you find yourselves staying close to home this summer, your little one can still have fun and see the world. Ella Lou’s Wanderlust City Playmats are the passport for playtime in some of your favorite urban settings. Designed in a road map motif, these organic cotton mats let tots toddle their way through the streets of Los Angeles, New York City or San Francisco. The crawl-friendly surface is gentle on tender knees and is also ideal for tummy time. Older kids [&hellip

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    In just a few short weeks, I’ll have a kindergartner graduate home for the summer. She’s learned so much this past year, and I can only imagine how much she’ll absorb once first grade starts up. Because our school district has a half-day kindergarten program, we supplemented her education with an enrichment program a few days a week: a great way of extending the learning and enabling her to grasp new concepts not covered by the Common Core. Sure, summer gives us a breather when it come to the frenetic pace of the daily grind, but I like to think my kids can still maintain an education outside of the classroom, even when they’re not hitting the books. If you find yourself looking for ways [&hellip

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    A friend just took her first cross-country trip with her baby daughter…and boy, were her arms tired! No, this isn’t a classic joke set-up, but rather a comment on the reality of today’s parents having to lug too way too much stuff with them. Being on-the-go may sound carefree, but if you’re adding a baby to that equation, traveling is anything but easy-breezy! If you’ve got a family trip on the books this summer, it pays to do a little advance planning to figure out what you’ll need and when you’ll need it, so you can pack easily and have everything within your reach. For that reason, we love the lil’ traveler line from Miamica. This designer has found a way to streamline the travel [&hellip

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    My newly-minted 6-year-old received a stuffed lemur for her birthday earlier this week. Because we don’t know too much about this species (except from what we saw in the Madagascar movies), it seemed like a perfect opportunity to learn about something new. But before we could hit the library, our local newspaper ran a story about a nearby university’s scientist who received an award for her research on…yup, you guessed it…lemurs. Naturally it got us to talking about these mysterious creatures who happen to be endangered species. That’s when things got a little tricky; trying to explain what it means to be a dwindling breed to a kindergartner is not as simple as recapping a lengthy article meant for adults. So, since the experts say [&hellip

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    The open road is calling your name. Maybe it’s because it’s finally Friday, the weather is good and you’re itching to get out of town. Or maybe it’s just easier said than done; you still have family commitments and a list of errands a mile long. If that’s the case, it never hurts to live vicariously and that’s what we’re doing, thanks to a globe-trotting little girl. Lately Lily is a fresh new face in the world of kids’ entertainment–and a refreshing one at that. This is not a girl who dwells in the virtual world, but who joins her jet-setting parents on their various travels and records her observations about these adventures. Aside from  a doll in her likeness made by MerryMakers, Lately Lily [&hellip

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    Still looking for last-minute Easter basket stuffers? We’ve got some great suggestions that work for girls and boys, from a name that’s synonymous with creativity. New this spring, Crayola has introduced Chalk Grab ‘N Go Games, a line of classic games based on its colorful sidewalk chalk. If you’ve got kids, chances are you have a bucket of sidewalk chalk hiding somewhere in your garage, like we do. With these fun games, chalk extends its usefulness beyond hopscotch and sidewalk sketches into more active play. Each packaged game–Chip Shot Golf, Foot Hockey, Bean Bag Toss and Obstacle Course–contains all the tools needed to play, including four sticks of chalk. Not only are these games ideal for backyard play, but they pack easily for trips to [&hellip

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    As soon as spring break rolls around and my kids have been home bothering…ahem, spending time with me for a whole week, it makes me  realize that summer vacation is not too far away. I feel like we’ve gotten a bit of a jump-start on getting our summer gear, thanks to off-season swimming lessons, but still haven’t found a decent bag for toting all my kindergartner’s stuff…until now. PaddlePak is a water-resistant backpack for ages 2 and up that’s both pretty and practical. You can stash a wet suit or towel without worrying about ruining the fabric. A special roll-top seal keeps everything safe and secure, while the Trunki grip keeps sunglasses or water goggles within easy reach. Our favorite “de-tail” is the tail that [&hellip

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    Do you know a kid who’s bogged down by their bag? I see it nearly every day when kindergartners can barely manage to traverse the steep step up on the bus, thanks to a bulky backpack. It’s even more heartbreaking when it’s a preschooler who seems to be toting enough luggage for an overnight flight than a half day at school. And a lunch bag to the mix, and you’ve got a date with the chiropractor in your kid’s near future. Maybe that’s why we like SuperMe! bags so much. It’s perfect for the pint-sized Superman-in-the-making who can’t quite part with this special powers when headed off to school or daycare. You can choose between the Cape Backpack, a sturdy model that converts into a [&hellip

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    Right now, I am listening to the ocean waves as they lap at my feet. The gulls are circling overhead as I sip from a cold concoction and inhale the tropical scents of coconut and pineapple. I inhale deeply and the intoxicating scent of salt mixed with sunscreen overcomes me…and then I wake up. Yes, my reality is that it’s snowing for the sixth time this winter (but who’s really counting), and my kids are yet again home from school. And since they’ll most likely be home again tomorrow, with frigid temperatures keeping us indoors, I’ll have to rely on my active fantasy life to get me through the next 24 hours or so. If this forecast is any indication of the next couple of [&hellip

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    Today marks our third snowfall of the season, and it’s not even Christmas! The very thought of getting through winter while traversing our local, windy roads with kids in tow gives me the shivers. Keeping them safe is my job as a parent, so I want to be sure I make the right decisions, and that includes keeping them buckled up in the right safety seats. Because my 9-year-old is on the petite side, she still rides on a booster seat, as does her 5-year-old sister. As you can imagine, being “almost double digits” means not wanting to feel like a little kid. But that doesn’t mean forgoing what’s important, like your life. Fortunately, some booster seat manufacturers recognize this desire for style, while still [&hellip

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