April the Giraffe, I Can Relate

Poor April.

Millions of people are watching as webcams stream the pregnant giraffe around the clock. The obsession has been going on for more than a month. Everyone from animal experts to the average Joe is analyzing April’s every move, including all of the movement in her belly, and speculating on when she’ll give birth. You can even place bets on when the little giraffe will make its debut. You’ve got 14-1 odds the baby will be born Sunday. I’ll give you even odds April the Giraffe is tired of the attention.

Any pregnant woman who’s gone past her due date can relate to April’s situation. Strangers think it’s perfectly acceptable to make comments like, “Woah! You’re as big as a house! You could pop at any minute!” Forget personal privacy. Everyone wants to know about your dilation and contractions, and they have no reservations about asking you.

The same way people are incredulous when they log on the live webcam and find April is still pregnant, they seem frustrated and annoyed when a pregnant woman hasn’t found a way to birth her baby (as if it’s up to us!) They’ll offer the same advice you’ve heard everywhere else. They’ll tell you to eat spicy foods, go for walks or have sex. It worked for them, they’ll say. Why hasn’t it worked for you?

Some of the latest headlines declare April is “cranky” and “agitated.” What female isn’t at this stage of pregnancy?! Talking to a woman who is nine months pregnant is like playing roulette. You hold your breath and hope you’re catching her at a good moment (which, let’s be honest, are few and far between.)

The good news for women is our pregnancies almost seem easy, compared to a giraffe’s. Their gestation is 15 months. (See, nine months isn’t so bad!) But here’s the kicker (pun intended!), a baby giraffe is born six-feet-tall and weighing 150 pounds. Kinda makes a 10-pound baby not seem so bad!

 
From one mama to another, best wishes to April. I hope you get to meet your not-so-little one soon!

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Bracket Challenge: Preschool Edition

It’s time for the tournament. March Madness. The Big Dance.

This year, you can get the kids in on the fun with their own March Madness bracket challenge! I designed it with toddlers and preschoolers in mind.

Here’s how it works:

There are 4 categories: Physical, Literacy, Math & Art. Kids can do each activity in the Sweet 16, and their favorite activity in each matchup moves forward in the “tournament.” The winners then go head to head with other winners, and eventually the kids will determine their favorite activity of the whole March Madness.

You can download the bracket for free, and I’ve got links to letter and number tracing sheets, pattern sheets and an upper & lowercase letter matching game as well.

 
It’s a great chance for kids to get a little exercise, practice their motor and math skills and have some fun. And just like many of us, they don’t need to know a thing about basketball to join in!

Kids March Madness Bracket

Tracing ABCs

Tracing Numbers

Pattern Sheet

Matching Upper & Lower Case Letters

Happy birthday, Dr. Seuss!

Kids around the country are celebrating the birthday of Dr. Seuss. The famous children’s author would have turned 113 this year. You can do more than read Dr. Seuss books – you can make the pages come alive with some fun crafts and activities!
Check out the pictures below for inspiration, and click here to watch my interview with WCCO on ways to get kids engaged in reading.

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