Product Reviews

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Why We Should Hate Captain Underpants … But Don’t

Captain Underpants

Violence. Profanity. And characters prancing around in their underwear.

Sounds like the ingredients of some R-rated movie that responsible parents like all of us would surely keep far away from our children, doesn’t it?

Well we don’t know how to break it to you, but it’s actually a description of Captain Underpants, a series of twelve children’s novels by author Dav Pilkey…which our family just can’t get enough of.

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pouting girl at dinner table

Five things never to say at the family dinner table

pouting girl at dinner table

If you’ve spent much time on our site, you may know that we’re big fans of the good old fashioned family dinner. When your family regularly sits down to distraction-free, conversation-filled meals, your kids really come out ahead.

But what should your dinnertime conversations be about?

We used to think pretty much anything was fair game…until we read Raising a Healthy, Happy Eater: A Stage-by-Stage Guide to Setting Your Child on the Path to Adventurous Eating by pediatrician Dr. Nimali Fernando and children’s food coach Melanie Potock.

And now we know that the following five phrases are serious dinnertime DON’TS. (Full disclosure: Some of these might be tougher to stick to than others!):
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raising a healthy happy eater book

Free Book Giveaway: Raising a Healthy, Happy Eater

raising a healthy happy eater book

Does feeding your kids feel like a fight? Well take off your boxing gloves, and put on your oven mitts. Raising a Healthy, Happy Eater: A Stage-by-Stage Guide to Setting Your Child on the Path to Adventurous Eating is here to help.

And guess what? The Doctor and the Dad are giving away a free copy of this cool new book – keep reading to learn how you can win!

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Book Review: ‘Last Night I Had a Laughmare’ by J.E. Laufer

laughmare1

We’re reviewing gifts this holiday season! We’ve already told you about the best and second best gifts for parents ever, and now we’ve got a one for the kids in your life. Last Night I Had a Laughmare, written by J.E. Laufer and illustrated by Jeff Yesh, is a whimsical, rhyming story about a fantastical land called “Gigglyville.”

Laufer was inspired to write the book when she woke up one morning laughing in her sleep. She called it a “laughmare” and created a dreamland that would leave kids laughing too.

Our family has visited Gigglyville many times now, and here’s what we each had to say about the book:

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Why ‘Shimmer and Shine’ is not the worst kids TV show ever

shimmer-and-shine

Our kids recently discovered a new Nick Jr. cartoon called Shimmer and Shine.

Our initial thoughts about the show were:

“Oh no, not another show to watch.”

“The music in this thing is excruciating.”

“Why are these animated prepubescent genie children wearing so much makeup?”

But after overhearing enough fragments of the show ourselves – despite our conscious efforts to block them out – we realized that the show communicates at least one unique lesson that might make our kids’ screen time somewhat worthwhile.

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How ‘Draw Something’ taught our child to read

draw-something-teach-kids-to-read

Plopping our kids down in front of a TV, computer or phone screen isn’t exactly our favorite thing to do. After all, too much screen time can slow language development, impede academic achievement and contribute to obesity.

But our family has found that, given the right amount of parental supervision (and a little luck too), kids’ screen experiences can be fun, helpful, or educational…

…sometimes in ways you’d never expect!

Case in point:

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A five-year-old reacts to ‘It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown’

GreatPumpkinCharlieBrown

Over the last year, our family watched a whole bunch of Peanuts holiday specials – on Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s and Valentine’s Day – and we wrote down all the amazingly adorable things our kids said about them.

Well now we’re back to cover the one big Charlie Brown special we missed!

So without further ado, here’s how our now-five-year-old daughter Sammy and her nearly three-year-old brother Freddy reacted when we showed them “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” for the very first time!

(We think it’s a real treat!)

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