Giveaway: Fairy House & Solar Construction Kits from Imagine Childhood

This giveaway has now ended. Thanks for entering!

Today is the final day of our Home for the Holidays week! I hope you’ve enjoyed it and that you’ve gleaned a few gift ideas for the upcoming holiday season as well!

Since this is the third year in a row that I’ve highlighted the online store Imagine Childhood, I don’t have to tell you that I’m a fan.

I have reviewed, and purchased, items for birthdays and holidays there for a quite a while now, and have been incredibly pleased with the quality of the toys–as well as the heart behind them.


Sarah from Imagine Childhood has created the most beautiful virtual holiday catalog, showcasing many of the items in their shop–it’s an excellent way to get an overview of the toys and other creative goodness they offer to customers.

Last year I bought many of my kids’ stocking stuffers here–and I appreciated that they made it easy for me by putting the smaller sized gifts together for easy browsing.

Continue reading to find out more about the two toys being offered to a lucky winner today!
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Giveaway: $100 gift certificate from Gadanke journals

home for the holidays

This giveaway has ended–thanks for entering!

Welcome back to day three of our annual Home for the Holidays week!

Today I have the privilege of bringing you another giveaway from a friend and contributing writer to Simple Mom, Katie Clemons of Gadanke journals.

 

I have always been a journal lover at heart, and I’m thrilled that at least one of my children shares my passion.

But as a writer I also know the terror of the blank page that can overwhelm my creative expression. Sometimes getting started is the hardest part.

That’s where Gadanke comes in.

Gadanke, pronounced guh-dawn-kuh, comes from a German word meaning thought or idea. It’s also the name of Katie Clemons’ award winning shop, which she runs from a vintage airplane hangar in Montana.

Katie’s hand-crafted books are filled with:

  • writing prompts
  • embellishments
  • materials from Europe
  • 100% recycled paper.

Continue reading for a glimpse into these lovely story-catchers:
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Love146: End child trafficking & exploitation

Written by Jamie Martin, editor of Simple Homeschool and writer at Steady Mom

A few months ago my kids played side-by-side with survivors of child trafficking and exploitation. In spite of linguistic and cultural differences, they giggled and bounced together on a trampoline–united in the common language of childhood.

I watched with tears in my eyes.

One of the survivors was Jinny. She visited the United States from the Philippines to speak about her experience with Love146 as the organization marked its 10th anniversary.

Here’s what Jinny had to say:

“Because of our poverty, people deceived me and took advantage of me. What I experienced was terrible…During that time I wanted to die…But God was still good because He used people to bring hope to my life again.

When Love146 came into my life, I experienced hope, love and worth. Now I stand before you like a flower that is fragrant and brilliant because of your support. Now, little by little, I’m achieving my dreams.”

My husband serves as the CEO of Love146 (Meet the whole team here). Learn more about this organization and how we are impacting lives:
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Giveaway: Laser pegs light set & globe from HearthSong

This giveaway has ended and the winner will be announced soon!

Today is the first day of our annual Home for the Holidays week! Welcome to what will be a fun five days of giveaways, charity spotlights, and helpful holiday link round-ups from around the web.

I love HearthSong’s tagline–toys you’ll feel good about giving.

The company specializes in toys that encourage kids’ creativity and imagination–qualities desperately needed at this time of year–when we’re often bombarded with ads for tacky gizmos that seem enticing, but often don’t last very long.


HearthSong began in 1983, when founder Barbara Kane was struggling to find appropriate toys for her own children. I love her perspective:

“Earlier is not necessarily better. It’s important that children learn basic skills, but at the right developmental age. Most of all, children need time for creative, imaginative play. In fact, it is through play that children learn most readily.”

Continue reading to find out more about the two toys being offered to a lucky winner today!
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Why we don’t start school at 8 am

Written by contributor Kris of Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers

A note from Jamie: This post originally published on November 18, 2011. Enjoy!

You know those homeschooling families that get up before the sun, do their morning chores, have a big hearty breakfast, and start school by 8:00?

Yeah, we’re not one of those.

Not that there is anything wrong with being one of those families. To be honest, I can see many benefits in being early risers and many days I wish we were. However, we just aren’t.
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