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Feb 12, 2016

Three Tips to Make Your Child's First Day at Daycare the Best it Can Be - Sponsored by Early Explorers Academy in Waterford

Three tips to make your child’s first day at daycare the best it can be
Courtesy of Early Explorers Academy in Waterford 

Early Explorers Academy, in Waterford, offers unparalleled individual instruction, a children’s science lab and space for interactive play, all at an affordable price point. They know what kind of environment children love to learn in and thrive in, but for children just starting school or daycare getting them excited to begin going can sometimes be a challenge.



Eman Saleh, Early Explorers Academy director, offers these three tips to make your child’s first day the very best it can be:
  1. Prepare your child: If possible, tour the center with your child, meet the teacher, go over routines and procedures in detail to help your child anticipate with his/her first day will look like.
  2. Send a "lovey" or special item: The first day of school is not easy for any child--they are entering a new and unfamiliar territory. One of the best ways to help your child feel comfortable and safe in the new environment is by sending something familiar with him/her. This can be a blanket, favorite toy, stuffed animal, or a photograph of the family!
  3. Make it feel like a Special Day!: This can be done in several ways-waking up extra early to prepare a special breakfast (smiley face pancakes anyone?), going to the store to purchase a "big girl" or "big boy" backpack, having your child wear a special outfit or shoes; anything you can think of to help celebrate the first day!

Situated at 2716 Dixie Highway, Early Explorers Academy is now enrolling children ages 6 weeks to 5 years in half or full day programs that range from 2-5 days per week.


“We’ve bridged the gap between play-based learning and direct instruction,” said Eman Saleh, founder of Early Explorers Academy. “Many centers do a very nice job focused on one or the other, and we have built a curriculum that focuses on both. Our explorers will exercise their culinary skills as they participate in baking and cooking activities, use various mediums of art to create masterpieces, play along with their friends in our dramatic play center, and use their senses to explore the various sensory objects in our sensory station. They’ll also learn Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) lessons. We teach literature and embrace all cultures; all of it together makes for a robust learning experience.”

Children enrolled at Early Explorers Academy will enjoy:

  • Daily, individualized lesson plans with a teacher for all children ages 2 and older
  • Science lab to foster a love for the natural world, complete with lab coats and goggles, and an early look at the scientific method
  • Daily nutrition through snacks and meals
  • A supportive, caring atmosphere where value of self and peers is learned
  • Opportunities for character building designed to empower children

On Feb. 28, the community is invited to explore the curriculum, tour the facility, and meet the teachers. There will also be refreshments, face painting, a bounce house, raffle prizes and more, as well as crafts and science experiments in-line with the kinds of activities Early Explorers enjoy daily.

To learn more or to RSVP to the Open House, visit www.earlyexplorersacademy.org or call 248-618-0404.
About Early Explorers Academy
Early Explorers Academy (EEA) is an early learning center that aims to create a balanced learning environment for its explorers. The program continuously challenges explorers and promotes critical thinking and problem solving skills. It is the vision of EEA for its explorers to graduate with the foundational skills to be empathetic and confident learners who are prepared for grade school and beyond. The inclusive environment embraces diversity and builds a strong partnership between the school and family. EEA is located at 2716 Dixie Highway, Waterford, Michigan and is open Monday –Friday from 6:30 a.m. – 6:30 p.m. Reach EEA by phone (248-618-0404), at www.earlyexplorersacademy.org or on Facebook.

Elmo’s World: Elmo Wonders - Review

Sesame Street has a big place in my heart.  I grew up watching and learning with Big Bird, Snuffy (remember when adults couldn't see him?), Bert & Ernie, Gordon, Susan, and the Twiddlebugs.  Sesame Street has evolved over the years, but it's still a show that holds the standards high providing quality educational and entertaining television.  So, when Warner Bros. Home Entertainment asked me if I would like a complimentary Elmo DVD to review, I was happy to accept.  this article contains affiliate links to Amazon.com should you want to purchase a copy conveniently online.


In Elmo’s World: Elmo Wonders, Elmo wonders all about the exciting and adventurous world around him. Sesame Street’s curious red monster takes preschoolers on a journey to learn all about the sky, weather, doctors, bicycles, jumping and many other things inquisitive little kids like yours ask questions about.

 Over two hours of fun, this wonderful compilation also features “Elmo’s World: Transportation” for the first time on DVD. As an added bonus segment, Elmo’s good friend Ernie joins the fun to sing the “I Wonder” song. Elmo’s World: Elmo Wonders is priced to own for $14.98 SRP on DVD.

My girls have enjoyed Elmo’s World: Elmo Wonders tremendously over the past couple of weeks in the car, especially Carlyn, who loves Elmo.  I love how the episode makes learning fun.  What is even more exciting is when the children take parts of the video and apply them to the world around them.  Carlyn's newest game is to pretend she is on the show and she tells Elmo how she does various things, "Look Elmo, this is how I dance." Then, she will turn to her sister, Naomi (age 6 months) and say "Let's ask a baby how they dance. Baby show us how to dance."

Elmo’s World: Elmo Wonders packs a lot of learning and adventure into this DVD.  The kids will have so much fun watching, they don't even know they are gaining knowledge.  I highly recommend this newest DVD for your family, especially if you have Elmo fans in your home.

Create your own 10 Minute Workout


Metro Detroit Mommy Blogger Theresa Walker - BeachBody Coach


We all have those days, you know, the days where you wake up and plan to take some time for yourself, but next thing you know it’s the middle of the afternoon and you haven’t had time to sit down yet.  Or the days where you want to fit in some time for yourself, to do something good for your body, but as the day goes on there’s always something else on your list that should get done first.  Next thing you know it’s late evening and you are too exhausted to do anything at all except sit on the couch and unwind.
I’ve been there, done that, as they say.  But I’ve learned a few tricks over the years and found a way to fit in a quick workout that is good for your well-being, health and sanity, in a minimal amount of time.  And, I dare say that anyone can do it!  



The premise of exercise is to get your heart rate up, get those calories burning.  Sometimes we forget, you don’t need to do high intensity interval training to do that, nor do you need to spend 30 minutes if you aren’t able to.  On days I am short on time, I make up my own workout.  The best part about it is, you can do it anywhere, I’ve done it on vacation in my hotel room when I didn’t have the hour to spend in the gym/time to shower/change etc.  What is great is that you don’t even need the TV, which means you can do it while the kids are watching TV!  Or, if your kids are like mine, they may want to do it with you!  Or hey, you can do it while YOU watch TV, during commercial breaks.  You can do this work out for 5, 10 or 15 minutes.  Customize it to what fits into your day.  You decide your intensity level.  

Below is a list of exercises you can do, indoors or outdoors.  If it’s summer, why not do it while you’re watching the kids playing in the yard?  You can do each for any amount of time that you want.  You can mix and match what you want to do, if you want to target abs or legs or you want a full body workout.  Another suggestion, if you have hand weights, you can use those as well to burn more calories and build muscle.  Most of the below you’ve probably heard of, for those you haven’t it’s easy to google and find a YouTube video of how to do it properly.  There’s a lot to choose from, pick a few and get to work!  

Jumping Jacks
Burpee’s
Squats (regular or sumo)
Lunges (front, back, side)
Lunges with a “chop” (weights)
Sit-ups
Push-ups
Plank (normal, side)
Plank with a row (weights)
Plank twist
Plank moguls
Crunches (bicycle crunch, side crunch etc.)
Russian Twist (with or without weights)
Reverse Crunch
Hollowman
Running in place
Skipping in place
Skaters
High Knees
Mountain climbers
V Up’s
Superman’s
Bird Dogs
Leg Lifts (while standing- to the side, back etc. or while on all fours)
Fire Hydrants (while on all fours)
Squat jumps
Jumping Lunges
Rock Star jumps
Down Dog
Sun-salutation (Yoga)
Pilates 100
Lower Back Shoulder Bridge
Upper Back Letter “T”
Spiderman’s
Deadlifts



Theresa Walker
Theresa is a wife and stay at home mother of 2 energetic boys, DJ (8) and Aiden (5). She has a bachelors in Communications and prior to being a mother she worked at Better Investing magazine in advertising and as a Corporate Account Manager. These days she is fortunate enough to spend time with her boys checking out all of the local fun there is to be had. She and her family love to travel. She is also active in a large online mom's group through Facebook that she started called Planet Mom. She enjoys being active and one of her proudest accomplishments was running the Detroit Half Marathon as well as the Romeo to Richmond Half. In her free time you can find her running or biking through Stony Creek. Or curled up on a couch with a good book and her cat in her lap. She recently became a BeachBody Coach, so that she could share her love for health and fitness with others to help them reach their personal goals. You can find her Facebook page at Inspired Health & Fitness. She considers herself a "Fit Foodie" and loves trying new recipes, experimenting and new restaurants around town. She hopes she can share some of her tips for healthy eating and exercise for busy moms and Metro Detroit Mommy Fans

Feb 11, 2016

Top Five Tips to Get Better Sleep with your Valentine

Metro Detroit Mommy
Sponsored Guest Blog
US-Mattress President Joe Nashif


He snores, she tosses and turns, and both are losing sleep. He prefers a firm mattress, and she wants to feel like she’s floating on a cloud. For the modern couple, sleeping together is not all it's cracked up to be.

Today more than a third of American couples are disrupted by their partners’ sleep issues—which drives one out of every four couples to sleep in separate beds or rooms to get decent shut-eye. Valentine’s Day is the perfect time for couples to rekindle their sleeping standards and determine what type of mattress is best for them based on sleeping preferences, trouble habits, comfort levels and sleep styles.

With so many couples struggling to find that perfect balance of comfort and companionship, I asked my mattress expert team at US-Mattress to put together their top five tips to help couples get deep, restful sleep. While the quality and features of a mattress will vary by manufacturer, material and design, these Top Five Sleep Solutions will arm couples in their search for a bed fit for two:

  1. Combat active sleepers. If your partner tosses and turns, choose a memory foam, gel memory foam or latex mattress to prevent the transfer of motion across the sleep surface. They can move around and you won’t even notice. If you prefer an innerspring system, select a mattress with wrapped or pocketed coils.
  2. Cut down on snoring. Snoring is one of the most disruptive sleeping habits facing couples. Partners who snore—or are kept awake by snoring!—should invest in an adjustable base. Those with an anti-snore feature or pre-set will raise the head of the base by seven degrees, which opens up airways and reduce snoring.
  3. Avoid temperature disputes. The style of comfort material is crucial for mates with different temperature preferences. Mattresses that contain PCM (phase change materials) are currently the best temperature managing materials on the market.
  4. Compromise on comfort. If he likes a firm mattress when she wants to sink into bed, couples can compromise by choosing the firmer mattress and adding a high-quality mattress topper to the partners’ side who prefers a softer feel.
  5. Build your own bed. Couples who cannot agree at all on a mattress’ firmness should consider making their own King bed by pairing two Twin XL mattresses suited to each partner with a bridge connector. Many people don’t know that a set of King size sheets will fit nicely over the top of two Twin XLs.

It's the most intimate piece of furniture in your house, but sleeping on the wrong mattress can bring trouble to the most blissful of couples. Insufficient sleep leads to any number of larger issues that diminish your daily quality of life, such as obesity, depression, hypertension, increased stress, and stroke. Perhaps the most romantic gesture this Valentine’s Day is to give your partner the gift of better sleep.

For more information or to contact a Mattress Expert, visit www.us-mattress.com.

Joe Nashif is the president of Brighton, Mich.-based US-Mattress, the first online mattress retailer with the largest selection of name brand mattress sets. US-Mattress has showrooms in Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills, Livonia, Plymouth, Southfield and West Bloomfield.

Feb 10, 2016

Naomi at Six Month

Naomi is now six months old.  Time goes by so quickly, especially knowing that she is our last baby.  I wish time would slow down.


Naomi is almost sitting on her own, she's able to roll over, scoot around on the floor (almost crawling) and she says "hi" and "dada".  She is an incredibly happy baby and gives smiles out freely to everyone that smiles at her.  She responds to tickling and games with big smiles and laughter.


She is such a cuddlebug and is content to be held most of the time.  She loves her sisters and her face lights up when she sees them.  Peek-a-boo is a fun game, but seeing the baby in the mirror and being upside down are her favorites.


People always ask me about sleep.... she's such a great sleeper.  She sleeps pretty much through the night waking to nurse a couple of times, but because we bed share it doesn't disturb my sleep much.  Her previously blue eyes are turning brown and she gaining weight at a good rate.

Thank you to Sticky Bellies for providing the stickers shown in this post.  You can find out more about the Metro Detroit Mom owned business here: http://www.stickybellies.com/


BE COOL, SCOOBY-DOO! DVD {Giveaway ends 3/2/16}

BE COOL, SCOOBY-DOO!
THE NEWEST ADAPTATION OF THE
CLASSIC ANIMATED MYSTERY SERIES
IS AVAILABLE ON DVD FOR THE FIRST TIME  
FEBRUARY 23, 2016
FROM WARNER BROS. HOME ENTERTAINMENT

One lucky fan will receive a copy of this DVD in exchange for this promotional post.  
Affiliate links included in this post.


Two-Disc DVD Set Features Thirteen 22-Minute Episodes
for Over Four Hours of Scooby-Doo! Content

Be Cool, Scooby-Doo!, the newest adaptation of the classic, animated mystery series will be released on DVD for the first time by Warner Bros. Home Entertainment (WBHE) February 23, 2016.  Get those Scooby snacks ready! That lovable Great Dane is back to entertain viewers with new mysteries, more cool adventures and non-stop fun in this updated version of the legendary cartoon. It’s a new look and feel for the Scooby-Doo! gang as they hit the road in a state-of-the-art Mystery Machine and get wrapped up in a set of intriguing new mysteries. Titled Be Cool, Scooby-Doo! Season 1 Part 1, this release will retail for $19.97 SRP.

In Be Cool, Scooby-Doo! Season 1 Part 1, high school is over and Shaggy, Velma, Daphne, and Fred have just completed their senior year. What better way to celebrate summer break than by going on a road trip? This could be the gang’s last summer together, so the teens decide to live it up by hitting the road in the Mystery Machine in search of fun, laughs and great adventures. Along the way, the teen sleuths encounter some of the most mind-blowing mysteries yet. Will Scooby-Doo and the gang complete their trip or will ghosts and monsters throw them off course? Viewers will want to come along for the ride in this freshly redesigned, smart, funny adaptation of the legendary cartoon classic!

Be Cool, Scooby-Doo! Season 1 Part 1 will keep Scooby-Doo! fans entertained with its contemporary look and engaging new mysteries,” said Mary Ellen Thomas, Vice President Family & Animation Marketing. She added, “While it’s the same Scooby-Doo! we know and love, this version takes a closer look at each of the Mystery Inc. characters, their individual personalities and the dynamics they all share. We’re excited about this new release.”

Be Cool, Scooby-Doo! premiered on Cartoon Network October 5, 2015 and continuously ranks #1 in the timeslot for boys 6-11 and #2 for kids 6-11.

Enter below for a chance to win a copy of 
Be Cool, Scooby-Doo!,



Legally Blonde JR This Weekend

Based on the award-winning Broadway musical and the smash hit motion picture, Legally Blonde JR. is a fabulously fun journey of self-empowerment and expanding horizons.  The show's instantly recognizable songs are filled with humor, wit and sass - leaving cast members and audiences alike seeing pink!

Legally Blonde JR. follows the transformation of Elle Woods as she tackles stereotypes, snobbery, and scandal in pursuit of her dreams. When Elle's high school boyfriend Warner dumps her and heads to Harvard, claiming she's not "serious" enough, Elle takes matters into her own hands, crafting a showy song-and-dance personal essay and charming her way into law school. Befriending classmate Emmett and spunky hairdresser Paulette along the way, Elle finds that books and looks aren't mutually exclusive.  As Elle begins outsmarting her peers, she realizes that law may be her natural calling after all.

The show runs February 12, 13, 19 and 20 @ 7:30 p.m. with a 3:00 p.m. matinee on Sunday, February 14.

Tickets at the door will cost $15 for Adults and $12 for Students 18 and under. Take advantage of discounted tickets online by visiting actingoutdownriver.com/jazzhands.

Directed by Kelly Klug of Taylor, Assistant Directed by Janine Pauly Goethe-Brown of Southgate, Vocal Director Sarah Leonard of Allen Park, and Choreographed by Jenna Perugi of Trenton and Madeline Balavitch of Wyandotte.  The show features Moira McCardell of Trenton as Elle Woods and Tyler Goethe of Southgate as Warner Huntington III.

Acting Out Productions is a theatre company focused on offering on-stage and backstage opportunities for theatre lovers of all ages in the Downriver area.  In addition to the Holiday Extravaganza, the rest of their 2015-2016 season includes: ‘Night Mother, 9 to 5 the Musical, Disney’s Cinderella Kids, Yes &, and Disney’s Tarzan.

Enter below for a chance to win four tickets to the performance on the 19th or 20th: