Did you know that the Peanuts' history dates back as early as 1950, when cartoonist Charles Schulz's first comic strip was printed in seven different newspapers? Fifteen years later, good 'ol Charlie Brown, Snoopy, and the rest of the gang even made their way on to the cover of TIME in 1965…and on the screens of televisions! 1966 introduced Peppermint Patty, and shortly thereafter, in 1970, Snoopy found a little feathery friend named after the music festival "Woodstock."
Now, 64 years later in 2014, we're pleased to announce that Charlie and the Peanuts characters will be joining the Put Me In The Story gang!
For the first time ever, your child will be able to star alongside America's treasured Peanuts characters—becoming an honorary Peanut themselves—in original, personalized books created specifically for Put Me In The Story. We are incredibly excited to bring these classic comic strips to life with a fresh, new experience.
Stay tuned for the release of the first books in the series collection—Good Grief, It's Your Birthday and Cheer Up, Charlie Brown—in September 2014. Make way for the Peanuts parade!
Isn't it amazing that we can still recite the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Three Little Pigs, or even Cinderella, years after they were told to us? Telling or reading fairy tales to children helps them grasp the meaning behind a story and relate to its moral or message. Sometimes a particular fairy tale speaks to a child directly and resonates with them deeply without them even realizing it!
(Artwork from Marianne Richmond's Grandma Loves Me!)
Ask any child how much he or she loves their grandparents and they'll tell you how much Grandma and Grandpa rock. They'll go on and on about how they love visiting Grandma and Grandpa's house to play, bake, or just spend time together.
Ask any grandparent about their grandchildren and they'll tell you just how uniquely perfect, adorable, and adventurous each one is. Being a grandparent gives you the chance to fully play with the youthful little people you met and instantly loved. Grandparents have the opportunity to bridge the gap between generations, turning an already very special relationship into something incredibly multi-faceted and beautiful.
If you're a grandparent yourself, find a few ideas to play and connect with your favorite little ones below:
• Tag along for a school event. If you live close and your granddaughter or grandson is in a musical or playing a basketball game, you should go and watch them shine. They'd love to see you there.
• Take a trip to the library, museum, or aquarium. Go somewhere that's both fun and educational for everyone.
• Hang at home together. Play board game favorites, blow bubbles, or put together puzzles.
• Get a fish tank at home and share it with your grandchildren. Children love to observe bright-colored fish swim—and name and feed them too! You'll share something special with your grandchildren, and teach them how to be responsible when taking care of the fish whenever they visit you.
• Share a favorite hobby with your grandchild. What's one of your favorite things to do? Whether it's playing piano, fishing, or cooking, share it with your grandchildren! Do it together, or commit to teaching them a bit about it. If they don't seem interested, you can always try something else.
• Put together a sticker collection, or any sort of collection! Collecting seashells, stickers, dried flowers, or something special is a meaningful way to connect. Sharing a collection and committing to it over the years can really help you continue to grow close.
• Share old family photographs and belongings that used to be Mom or Dad's. Remember to share your stories with your grandchildren! Even though, at times, it might seem like grandchildren are too young to retain stories, they're so important for them to hear! Plus, you'd be surprised how much they'll actually remember once they start getting older.
• Read together! (This is an important one.) Find out what characters and stories your grandchildren like and be sure to carve out some time to read books that will interest them whenever you are together. We have two new great recommendations below!
Grandparents, what activities do you like to do when you visit your grandchildren, or they come to visit you? Share your comments with us!
Grandpa Loves Me! Personalized Book
Perfect for a grandchild of any age, Grandpa Loves Me! is as sweet as can be. This book shows your grandson or granddaughter how much you care about him or her every time they read it. When your grandchild remembers all the fun they have with Grandpa, they won't be able to wait until your next visit!
(Artwork from My Name Is Not Alexander by Jennifer Fosberry and Mike Litwin)
Did you know our presidents were great readers? Thomas Jefferson's personal library was one of the largest. It went through many stages, including the loss of many books to a fire in his childhood home. But, when the Library of Congress burned down in 1814, he had the largest collection of books in America. It was to the Library of Congress that he eventually sold his collection.
Share with your children how powerful it is to collect books or take trips to the library, along with the meaning of passing along favorites to family or friends. Visit the library or organize a bookshelf with your little one in honor of Thomas Jefferson.
President Obama is known for being an avid reader. His alleged favorites even include the children's classic Where the Wild Things Are and the Harry Potter books he used to read to his daughters.
Inspire your children by sharing with them the many great things they can do when they embrace their imagination…and spend time with their nose in a book! Read books with fantastical elements in honor of President Obama.
Though we often associate George Washington with a bowl of cherries, have you ever wondered what his favorite food really was way back in the late 18th century? Our very first president was an ice cream lover! It's good to know that ice cream is a dessert that has stood the test of time.
In celebration of this wonderful insight, scoop out a favorite ice cream flavor with your kids and cuddle up with a good book in honor of George Washington—whose birthday is just around the corner on February 23rd.
Can you guess who the first president was to ride in an automobile? It was President Theodore Roosevelt, who was also the first to travel out of the country (to Panama) during his term.
Cars, planes, and trains are great indeed, but for now, grab your children, open up a book packed with adventure, and travel somewhere magnificent in honor of Teddy Roosevelt!
Save 17% on Jennifer Fosberry's New York Times Bestselling Personalized Books: My Name is Not Alexander and My Name is Not Isabella
*Enter coupon code PREZ17 at checkout
* Use coupon code PREZ17 to take advantage of this offer and receive 17% off our regular price shown on the website. Your discount will be applied to the following titles: My Name is Not Alexander and My Name is Not Isabella, and will be calculated at the time of checkout. Shipping and taxes are excluded from the discounted amount. Offer expires 2/19/14 at 11:59pm CST.
February 10th–16th is Random Acts of Kindness Week—a whole week dedicated to practicing kindness!
(Artwork from Marianne Richmond's I Believe in You)
As parents, we naturally want the best for our children. We hope our children will grow up happy, they'll be well-behaved, and that they'll have positive relationships and experiences in life. A pretty big project, yes?! We have to remember that life is a process—a journey that we're all on together. Let's start with kindness!
Random Acts of Kindness Week is all about building up compassion and showing others that you genuinely care about them. This week provides a great opportunity to take the big message of kindness and simplify it. It's the perfect time to emphasize to your little ones the importance of treating one another with kindness and respect.
How can we help teach this universal message of kindness to our children so that they really grasp it and practice it? Well, by starting small. Do some good with your kids, or teach some good to them! Find some ideas below to help spread kindness with your children and beyond.
1. Teach kindness in your words and actions. Provide an environment for your children that is built on kindness. Showing kids the value of kindness will help regulate their emotions and teach them to be more intentional in how they treat one another.
2. Encourage your kids to help you and be kind to you. Communicate to them that parents need help too—whether it be with the groceries, chores around the house, etc.
3. Tell your children when you need a hug, or when their little brother needs a hug! This is a simple way for children to start picking up on your emotions and know how they can help you feel better.
4. Send a hug to a grandparent or relative this week! Find a long enough piece of paper so that you and your child can sketch out your child's actual arm span. Have your child lie down on the paper and stretch his arms out wide so that you can trace around his full arm span (like a warm embrace!). Then, cut out the paper embrace and send it in the mail!
5. Remind your kids to say "please" and "thank you," to always express their gratitude openly. Suggest that they say "thank you" to their bus driver, or write a thank you note to their teacher.
6.Practice having a positive attitude during tough times, and watch how it can positively affect others around them. Ask your children what they observed during the process.
7. Share the greatness of a compliment. Try crafting Valentine's Day cards around offering each recipient a compliment.
8. As a family, brainstorm things you can do together that are consciously kind. Post the list up on the fridge and commit to doing them throughout the week!
9. Ask your child to have someone new over for a play-date, someone they wouldn't always necessarily ask to come over and play.
10. Take the weekend to clean out closets, sift through the kitchen for cans, and donate items to homeless shelters or communities that could really use them.
11. Donate old books or toys that are too young for your kids. Have your children write a kind note to stick in the books you give away.
12. Find ways to volunteer with the whole family right in your community! Go to the closest animal shelter and talk dogs together as a family, help a neighbor shovel her driveway, or perhaps visit a nursing home.
Be sure to remind your children that practicing kindness doesn't mean you should expect a reward, or something in return, but that you should feel fulfilled by making someone else smile.
What kind thing will you do today?