How to Thrive with Your Kids in Summer

I’m excited it’s summertime.  I couldn’t be happier.  I mean, we welcome spring because it means newness, a fresh start – but it doesn’t mean we switch much more than our time outside planting.  But with summer, lots changes!

What Makes Summer So Different?

Summer means travel, AND it means kids’ schooling changes for both homeschoolers and “building” schoolers.   And any different schooling pace means a HUGE change.

Instead of dreading the change in schedule, this year, I decided to thrive with my kids in summer.

I took a look at what they love most about school.  They LOVE centers.  They love the focused time, they love the single activity, and they love what they learn through them.

How We Do It

So to start, we set up centers in our home.  I’m excited to share this with you so that perhaps it will help your family, too!

My kids are located among 5 locations in my own home (and outside), in rotation.  This makes sure there is less interaction between them.

Don’t worry, we have group activities, too.  They LOVE being together, don’t worry – I just want to ensure they have time when they are not being interrupted by a sibling.  We love to learn – I want to create an environment where they can learn themselves, and from each other.

I’m also an introvert and need quiet time.  This will ensure I don’t burn out this summer.  I’m just calling it like it is: I’m no hero.

Without Further Ado

Here are our centers!

1- The Independent Reading Center

independent reading center

From early on, I’ve had to resist the TV.  We watch about 30 min to an hour one day a week, and we have movie night on Fridays.  So we fill our media cup up through reading.  We participate in three summer reading programs:
– Barnes & Noble
– our local library
– our post/base library and
– my own geographically-unbound summer reading challenge (find out more here).

Having this independent reading nook is going to make excelling at all of these challenges possible!
I’ve been asked if one book counts for two or more programs.  I will tell you I’ve moved away from doing that.  Why?  Once they’ve completed a reading program, starting a new reading program keeps things fresh, and my kids feel the blessing of achievement more than once during the summer.

2 – The Activity Book Center
fingerprint book art

We decided on this center because as a result of being Book Boss kiddos, my kids have a ton of activity books!  I am able to buy brand new activity books at 33% cash back as a leader with Usborne Books & More, and earn even more free, so we have quite a few they didn’t get to during the school year.

The purpose of this is twofold: one, to be sure we stay within our budget this summer, and two, to allow my kids free space to work on things they’d already picked out! Here, my son is working on one of his Fingerprint Activity Books!  There are examples on each page of how to transform fingerprints into certain animals or objects.

3 – The Arts and Science Center

fairy garden magic painting art

I love to combine these two disciplines because at school they rarely get to combine them.  We did this a lot when I homeschooled my kiddos because I think wonder is implicit in both.
At this center, they get to choose from arts and science books to create something of beauty.  Again, we have a lot of art books because of my work with Usborne Books & More, so here, my daughter is using water to create color in her Fairy Gardens Magic Painting Book. 

My other daughter is enjoying exploring balance and gravity through craft popsicle sticks.  She isn’t finished yet 🙂
science craft

4 – The Baking Center

baking center summer

My kids love to bake, and that’s taken me some getting used to.  This summer, I’m embracing it and have created the baking center.  They can rotate through if they like for a portion of the day and create some goodness for the family to enjoy.

YESSSSSS!

5 – The Outside “Center”

water plants in garden

Now, I really wish I had a better picture to show you, but I’m just being real here! 🙂 We had such a busy May our poor flowers are just hanging on.  Hopefully with dedicated time we can help these babies thrive, or enjoy replacing them.  Obviously, we need focus on the outside daily!

Don’t worry, there are thriving plants on the back porch.

This is when we also bike around outside (this is a place we love to be together – there is enough space for everyone!).  We will also go to our local swimming pool.

BONUS #6 – The Snack Center

snacks

My son got really into this system.  He figured out what I was going for.  When he asked if we could therefore have a snack center, I nearly lost my mind laughing.  Then, actually, I decided it was a great idea!

So yes, we call it a center – that, and lunch, and chores, and laundry…. I also added a computer center where they can choose an educational game or coding practice using one of our coding books.

So you see, there is hope for your summer!  If you’re balancing a lot, you can work when the kiddos are doing independent work.

If you are in the season when they need you a lot, perhaps you can make yourself some centers.  That might help bring focus to YOUR life.

Either way, if this blessed you let me know.  I’d love for you to feel free to pass this along and share!

Heading off to my COFFEE CENTER now! 😉

 

 


Alaska Cruise for Free? Yes, Please.

The second week of June, our company, Usborne Books & More, announced an incentive trip to Alaska!  This is a FREE seven day cruise with stopovers in Vancouver – which I’m super excited about, as that’s where I honeymooned!

The excursion trips are sure to be amazing too.  I’m counting on kayaking, exploring first nation culture in Alaska, and simply keeping my eyes open for bears, whales, and moose!

earn a trip to alaska

I’m so excited to earn this WITH my teammates, too.  You see, anyone who joins, ANY TIME, can start earning this trip!  You don’t need seniority or anything special to earn it – just a work ethic and the desire to share the books and this business!

Most of my business includes encouraging and equipping others with the tools they need to succeed.  It is my delight to do this. The books are awesome, we all know Usborne books rock – but the people this business attracts?  Even BETTER, can you believe it?!

alaskan cruise team pic

If this is something you’re thinking of working toward, let’s join forces.  I promise you that only good can come from working your business!  Check out these bonuses:
– commission
– free books
– a home-based business with flexibility
– kids steeped in the books of THEIR choice
– high quality training
– FRIENDSHIPS you won’t expect and had no idea you needed.

I’m not trying to sound trite by saying friendships.  That is hands down the best benefit of this business and I wish someone had blown through my pride years ago to show me the potential there.

The cool part is, we are all connected via our trainings and our group pages, so we connect quite often on lots of different levels, not just the business!

wonder women cape convention 2018

PLUS, we get to see each other every year when we go to convention, and some times I get to see my friends three times a year, depending on leadership conferences and our beach training!

Yeah, I said BEACH training!!!

team leader beach retreat new consultant mindset

Oh my friend, there is so much I could talk your ear off about, and it seems strange to say it – but ALASKA could just be your BEGINNING!!!

Adventure is in every book – but I’m here to tell you, it’s also in every book business.

Contact me here and we’ll start the conversation!~

Happy Reading!
Wendy

If you already know you are ready to start, let’s go!  Start by clicking here.

Look!  We even get a coloring sheet tracker so our family can keep up with us as we earn our points to ALASKA!  I LOVE THIS SO MUCH!  In fact, you need to download your own READING tracker on my tab here on the page!  Tons of benefits to coloring as you READ, friends!

coloring sheet alaska cruise


The Fort Bragg Fisher House Needs Help

Recently, the Fort Bragg Fisher House reached out to the community stating that there were needs.  The Fisher House at Fort Bragg helps over 100 famlies each year.  But their bookcases are looking worn, and could look better and be equipped better to help those families.

I saw this list of needs, and because last year our fundraiser and book raiser for them was so successful, I asked if I could provide that help again.  Technically they are not allowed to say yes or no – so I thought, I will work toward this goal because I know my network is AMAZING; indeed, last year, we raised $300 in NEW books for those kids!  Want to try to bless them that way again?

1

The Fisher House provides help to over 100 families yearly, as they wait for their soldiers to heal at the nearby Womack Army Hospital.  Their facility is incredible.  Handicap accessible, kitchen ready for many families, a beautiful setting and even an enclosed back yard full of toys for children.

 

However, as we well know, books that are read well need to be updated and replaced.  So, to provide help and stories to the families at the Ft Bragg Fisher House, I am launching our book drive.  It is easy and simple.  You can become involved by doing one of two things:

1) Go to https://tinyurl.com/FBfisherhouse and select one, two, or even 20 books from the list you’d like to donate.  Choose “SHIP WITH ORGANIZATION” at checkout and the books ship free!  I’ll send you a huge thank you, and if you are a business, I’ll give you a shout out on social media!

2) Copy and paste this message on your social media sites because EVERY BOOK HELPS:

The Ft Bragg Fisher House takes care of more than 100 soldiers’ families each year.  Now they’re asking for our help!  You can help by selecting any books from this list and having them sent to the Fisher House free of charge. Simply click here and select “SHIP WITH ORGANIZATION” for free shipping directly to the home! https://tinyurl.com/FBfisherhouse

I’d love to wrap this up for them by August 15.  Please please please help us get the word out.  These soldiers’ families deserve the very best.  It is my intention to give them the very best in children’s stories – books that last longer than most – and send them love in the quality of gifts they will receive.

Thank you for supporting our soldiers!

Happy Reading,
Wendy

P. S. Here’s the direct link to “My Mommy is a Hero” : https://b4108.myubam.com/p/6977/my-mommy-is-a-hero
Here’s the direct link to “My Daddy is a Hero” : https://b4108.myubam.com/p/6976/my-daddy-is-a-hero

 


VIPKID Tips: 2 Key Books for the Instructor

I was excited to learn of VIPKID, the program developed to connect English teachers with Chinese students.

I was excited because I am FOR anything that gives people financial options, which is why I joined Usborne Books & More in July 2014.

If you are here, you may know about VIPKID already, but suffice it to say, I was out of the running for it for time reasons.  I love my sleep.

Which is why my hat is off to you if you are an instructor! 🙂

Some of my book boss teammates ARE good at waking up early, though, and do this in addition to their Usborne Books & More careers, so I thought I’d ask them what books of ours they use to instruct their students.  Here was the result!

first words and dollhouse book VIPKID teacher tip

First Words and the Dollhouse Book for the win!

They use our first word books and the Victorian Dollhouse book to help their students learn more words in English.  I found that fascinating, but understandable! Here’s why.

The first word books are actually solid page format – so, not quite board book, and not quite regular pages.  This means they are easily held up to the screen a VIPKID instructor uses to do their instruction.  This ALSO means they are durable through MANY lessons.  WIN WIN!  With all of them, that’s at least 400 words to teach.  Brilliant.

The Dollhouse book contains both a book and the materials to actually construct a dollhouse, complete with characters and furniture!

This choice made sense to me after they explained it to me.  We have one of these and my children LOVED constructing it, (and reconstructing it when we moved) but I never considered that it would be PERFECT for doing instruction on FURNITURE!

Because you can actually construct the furniture and the people, they are easily held up to the screen, and used and reused.  The material used in this is durable too!

Victorian Dollhouse Usborne

I also know that as a teacher, it’s important to have variety and surprise.  Students love variety and knowing that you are a teacher who provides variety is key to keeping them excited.  Who knew you could actually hold up a couch?

If you’re interested in purchasing these for your in-home classroom, click here for the first words and here for the dollhouse book.  Of course you can always just use them for your own kids too! 🙂

I also welcome questions you may have about the options and website or affiliate link available to you when you join our literacy force as an Usborne Books & More consultant.

The 25% cash back is nice when you need a lot of teaching materials (with option to grow it to 33% cash back)!  Join us here to ask questions in a forum, or simply comment below and we’ll be in touch.

Happy reading!
Wendy

If you’re reading this and just wanting your children’s book affiliate link NOW, click here.

 


How to Earn a FREE Alaskan Cruise

Would you enjoy some time dedicated to travel where you are NOT the driver!? Me too.  Join me on an Alaskan cruise – for free – in summer 2019.

What’s Included?

  • A 7 day inclusive cruise aboard Royal Caribbean International’s luxury cruise liner: Ovation of the Seas
  • Stylish balcony staterooms for everyone
  • Travel Allowance
  • Cocktail Receptions

The plan

We earn points for sharing our AMAZING children’s books with preschools, schools, and families in fun events.  It is such a rewarding job in the first place – and then, to have the chance to earn the trip of a lifetime, too?

  1. I am offering hostess rewards to families who are interested in feeding their children’s growing and changing interests (click here if you’d like to schedule a book party online or in-home or in-coffee-shop, that one is my fave);
  2. I will offer our fundraisers to groups and schools and individuals who have big dreams but not the big funds (yet!) – click here to request more information;
  3. I will invite precious parents who simply want MORE for their families to join my Wonder Women & Supermen team.  We are a fabulous group: you might love the resources, training, and encouragement! Click here to request more information. Click here to investigate for yourself!
  4. I will train others on how they can offer these books and this business to others as well.

After all, every cruise needs superheroes, and my team is full of them!  Look at these amazing women!  We also have men on our team – we are the Wonder Women & Supermen – join us!

alaskan cruise team pic

We found out about this trip while attending our annual national convention with Usborne Books & More.  We were in our big session and they announced their bucket lists – and is there a trip that would encompass all of those things?

They are masters of suspense!

Well, they should be, right?  We are, after all, built on stories!

Some of the bucket list items that we will be able to check off:

  • Skydive simulator,
  • Whale-watching,
  • Cruise food (ha!)
  • Exploring
  • Bumper cars on a cruise ship
  • Putt-putt
  • Roller skating
  • Trapeze lessons
  • A 360 degree view
  • Rock climbing wall
  • Casino
  • Movie theatre

If you’d like to be part of the fun, contact me here.  I’m happy to answer your questions about how this might look like in your life!

Be the superhero in your child’s life!

wonder women cape convention 2018