CFC Livingroom

The Cummington Family Center

French Website for Kids July 18, 2007

Filed under: games,links,reviews,stuff to do,websites — zannestar @ 2:48 pm


A CFC member sent this in:  A great interactive website for kids, mine loves it. Check it out!

Go ahead, check it out.  It’s fun for adults too.  It’s a really well done Flash site.  Full of exploring, and updated regularly with new things to discover, Poisson Rouge (Red Fish), will delight all ages.  (Help keep it free – buy a t-shirt or download one of their games to your very own computer).   Enjoy!


Your Kid’s Self Portrait at The Children’s Art Museum May 10, 2007

Filed under: links,places to visit,stuff to do,stuff to make — zannestar @ 5:01 pm

You know your kid’s a Picasso – why not let everyone else know too!

Please pass this info on to your kiddos.

Draw/Paint/Collage a self portait! (that is a picture of you!) and drop
it off at the Children’s Art Museum in Shelburne Falls, matted/framed
by May 30th to be included in our art show. Nothing will be turned
away if it is ready to be hung.

Questions Call CAM: 413 625 6826!

Tony(a) Lemos
The Children’s Art Museum


Cummington Earth Day, April 22, 2007 April 12, 2007

Filed under: action,earth day,environment,links,stuff to do — zannestar @ 1:22 pm

Amy and Alice of The Old Creamery Grocery in Cummington are organizing an Earth Day in Cummington, Sunday, April 22!  There will be workshops and events for the whole family (stay tuned for a list of things happening…)

To help you get into the spirit of Earth Day (most of you are doing your best everyday to make a difference anyway), I thought we could start a list of things we could do to make a difference.  If you have an idea, post it in the comments section (it’s easy!!!).

Here are a few links:

Our World By Design  – This is the website started by the Cummington Sustainablitly Group – with great suggestions on actions you can take right now!

Please tell us what you do to help reduce your carbon footprint,  Post a comment here and share!


What did you do while it was snowing? March 19, 2007

Filed under: links,messy play day,recipe,stuff to do,stuff to make — zannestar @ 4:03 pm

I made this really cool modeling clay that air hardens. I found the recipe on via the StudioCAM blog. It’s super easy to make, it feels sooooo wonderful in your hands, and cleans up pretty well too. It does dry the hands out if you play with it for hours, but a little soap and water, and hands are back to normal.

Here’s the recipe:

  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 2 cups baking soda
  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • Heat over medium heat, stirring constantly until it forms a big ball. Turn out onto a board and knead once. Let it sit and cool off. Once it’s cool enough to handle have fun! Keep the unused portion in aluminum foil or a sealed container. For this to dry properly, poke holes in it (could be whiskers or eyes or dots….) and let sit. Depending on size and thicknesss, this dries pretty quickly!

I made beads and Izzy made a “shmoo” (remember …) . I’m going to have Izzy paint the beads later and we’ll string them up as necklaces for her grammies.

So – what did you do while you it was snowing? Post a comment here!


How to Make your Toddler Dance February 12, 2007

Filed under: links,parenting,stuff to do,video — zannestar @ 6:22 pm

Ok, I had to share this from Z Recommends.

Click and enjoy….it made me smile…

if the link above doesn’t work, copy and paste this into your browser:


Things to do in February January 19, 2007

Filed under: links,places to visit,stuff to make — zannestar @ 3:22 pm

Maybe it will snow and someone can host a sledding party? Anybody have some great hills? (this is the Hilltowns …)
Valentine’s Day is February 14. Make some handmade Valentine’s.


Chinese New Year is February 18.

Learn more:

Around Town:

Share an event or idea, post it here in the comments or email me.


Potty Training 101 January 16, 2007

Filed under: links,parenting,potty training — zannestar @ 2:00 pm

I know there are tons of ways to go about potty training. I remember a NY Times article about potty training: starting at 6 months, parents would hold the babies over the toilets and make a “shhhhhhhh”ing sound to associate potty and bodily function. But 6 months? Oh boy. I couldn’t imagine starting it then. I was more worried about eating, crawling, sleeping (hers and mine!). Going to the potty? I wasn’t ready then.

Our version of potty training: She comes into the bathroom with us. Teaching by example. We are going with the thought that when she is ready, it will happen, no more diapers. We started by getting a potty from a friend and put it in the bathroom. It was just there and she could explore and play with it. And she did. For a long time it held snacks (eewwww gross, but true), then it held toys, then crumpled up (but not used) toilet paper. Then she started sitting on it (oh boy! another step closer!). The whole time, we would talk about potty time and when do you know to go potty? Then one day while prancing naked in the bathroom, she went to the potty (just not in the potty). She didn’t notice. I pointed it out to her, and she was, I think, shocked, and not quite sure what it was and what had just happened. I explained that it was ok, no big deal, but that is something that should happen on the potty. If it doesn’t always happen, it’s ok, but next time try to use the potty when you feel like you have to go.

For the whole next week, anytime she would fill her diaper, she would look behind her and walk in circles trying to see what had just happened, and want her diaper changed immediately (no fun in the middle of Trader Joe’s), and everything would be dropped and we’d change her diaper. She started shortly after, to tell us that she had to go to the potty and would sit and sometimes there would be something to see in the potty and other times not.

Then we took a trip, and I thought well, this will change everything – and it did! We stayed with a family that has a child who is 18 months older than ours and she could sit on the big potty and use it! Izzy was amazed and in awe. They had a seat that fit onto the toilet, and Izzy was able to sit there too! While she was wearing diapers the whole visit, she didn’t use them and sat on the potty every time she needed to use it. WOOOHOOOO! Were we there, was she ready, is this it? She’s almost 2 and while I was excited, I thought we still might have a long road ahead.

Well, the plane landed and we were back to only using diapers. That’s ok. For us, it’s really about what she is comfortable with. It’s a month later, and she is just starting to sit on her potty again and occasionally wants to sit on the big potty. Sometimes she tells us she wants to use the potty, other times she asks for a diaper change. We did acquire a toilet seat adapter so she has the option of her little potty or the big potty.

The only thing I struggle with now is, what to do at night. Many nights she wakes and says she needs to use the potty and we go downstairs and most times it’s an excuse to get out of bed and play. What to do?

Here are a bunch of online resources/articles I’ve found while researching the life around the potty: – I frequent this one when researching – has a broad range of topics and I have enjoyed their books

A list from – favorite potty training books for kids.

Google Search for Potty Training – There is so much information out there.

*Tip – Not everything works for everybody. What works for us, might not work for you. There are different schools of thought on every subject. Research what seems like the right direction for you. Learn about different experiences and see what would be a good fit for you and your family. Then give it a try.

Have a potty experience, advice or question? post it here.