Do you live Barefoot?

When Milena was a baby, some of our favorite books to check out from the library were the “Cleo the Cat” books, and our car rides were filled with the sounds of Putumayo CDs. It wasn’t until recently that I realized they (plus many of our other favorite books) were from the same publisher: Barefoot Books. I was even more excited to learn that Barefoot Books offers their readers a chance to become Barefoot Books Ambassadors, allowing me the chance to work from home while doing what I love: staying at home to raise my daughter while sharing these wonderful stories with my friends and neighbors!

Barefoot Books products are all about exploring our planet, other cultures, and ourselves. As an avid reader who’s mother to a 2 year old who already has an expansive library, I know how difficult it is to buy books for a book lover. Barefoot Books make great gifts, because they’re not available in most stores (although they’re so lovely, you may be tempted to keep them for your own family!).

As your local Barefoot Books Ambassador, I can help you find the perfect books for your kids or just the right collection of products to give as a gift. You can order online through my personal marketplace (KidsReadBarefootBooks.com). If you live in the Madison area, you can also order directly through me. I’m also available for home parties, fundraisers, and more! You can follow me on Facebook: Kids Read Barefoot or e-mail me for more information: kidsreadbarefootbooks@gmail.com.

Do you live Barefoot? I’d love to hear about your family’s favorite Barefoot Books products!

Mikayla’s Grace

Mikayla’s Grace is a local non-profit that supports families with a baby in the NICU and those who have experienced the death of an infant at Madison Area hospitals by providing NICU care packages and angel memory boxes that offer both practical and emotional support for the parents.

The organization was started by Mike and Melissa Terrill and was initially inspired by their second child Mikayla Grace who was born too soon at 24 weeks, and went to her Heavenly home after a short 36 hours with them on this earth. Their first donation was to St. Mary’s Hospital in where their daughter Mikayla was born. In memory of Mikayla’s first Heavenly birthday on June 24, 2011 they donated 12 Angel memory boxes, 20 NICU care packages, 66 books, and 28 gowns with matching booties and hats. They are currently working on our goal to donate another 20 angel memory boxes and 20 NICU care packages on October 7, 2011. Go here to see how you can help. You can also help support Mikayla’s Grace (and the families it helps) in other ways:

Mikayla’s Grace is hosting the first ever Forever in Our Hearts Remembrance Day in honor of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month here in the Madison area on October 15th. This Remembrance Day is to honor families who have lost babies through pregnancy, stillbirth, or in early infancy. This event is being planned by local bereaved parents and our non-profit because October is the nationally recognized month of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness as proclaimed by President Ronald Reagan in 1988. October 15th was then envisioned as a day for families and friends to come together to remember and honor babies who left this world too soon. You can read more about it on the website.

Mikayla’s Grace is also currently up for the Pepsi Refresh Project with the opportunity to win a $5000 grant. This grant would allow them to to donate a year supply of NICU care packages and Angel memory boxes to BOTH St. Mary’s and Meriter hospitals in Madison.

In order to win this grant, Mikayla’s Grace needs to get enough votes to be one of the top 20 projects in their category. Anyone can vote, for up to five different projects each day, from now until September 30th in three different ways. So each person could vote for the organization three ways each day.

People can vote three ways each day, at this link:
http://www.refresheverything.com/mikaylasgrace

1. By signing in with their Facebook login
2. By signing in with a Pepsi Refresh account (takes just a few minutes and they do not send spam mail)
3. Texting 108258 to Pepsi (73774) to vote from a mobile phone (Standard text rates apply).

You can also POWER VOTE by entering in codes from underneath the caps of Pepsi bottles or on the packages of multipacks.

Just Between Friends Local Consignment Event

Didn’t find what you were looking for at the fall Half-Pint Resale or Moms of Multiples sale? Well, get ready for the HUGE Just Between Friends/Dane County East Kids and Maternity Consignment Sale. The event is back at the Waunakee Village Center this fall.

The event kicks off with presales on Thursday, September 29. The public sales run on Friday, September 30 (9am-6pm), Saturday, October 1st, (9am-6pm, 25% off sale) and Sunday, October 2nd (9am-noon, 50% off sale). A special sales event for first-time parents, grandparents and foster parents is planned for Friday evening from 6:00 to 8:00 with door prizes including a new $250 stroller.

Just Between Friends/Dane County East is doing its part to help area families turn their unneeded items into cash. Consignors price their own items and tag them using a free, easy, online bar code system. They can earn 65% of the sales price, 70% if they volunteer.

The event brings together thousands of new and gently used children’s and maternity items and makes them available for other families to purchase at great prices. Families will find great deals clothing, costumes, baby equipment and furniture, DVDs, books, toys, bags and much more. This and other locally-owned and operated JBF events help thousands of families save money each year. In addition, many consignors chose to donate their unsold items to a local charity extending the benefits to families even further.

Come shop and save at the JBF Dane County East sale at the Waunakee Village Center (333 S. Madison St., Waunakee, WI). Contact us through JBFDCEast@gmail.com, on Facebook, danecountyeast.jbfsale.com or www.jbfsale.com.

Also, watch for their first ever Winter/Holiday event at the East Side Business Club in Madison from November 12-14.

MadisonMamas.com

There’s a new resource for Madison area parents! MadisonMamas.com is a website that lists hundreds of links for pregnancy, groups, classes, activities, fitness, services, dining and shopping. Features showcase local events, specials, books, project ideas, recipes, decor, new products and much more. You can also post questions and comments to other local parents on their Facebook page: Madison Mamas

I’ve already found the website extremely useful for finding new kid-friendly places to shop and eat in the area. The site is so well organized, it’s simple to find exactly what you’re looking for. And I love the “Features” section – it’s given me some great ideas! (and MadisonMamas.com was kind enough to feature RM blogger – and local Barefoot Books Ambassador – Kat yesterday! Thanks, ladies!)

Kids for Peace at MCM, Saturday, Sept. 10

The Madison Children’s Museum is currently closed for Maintenance Week, but will reopen Saturday, September 10 to hold its 15th annual Kids for Peace event beginning at 10 am.

Celebrate International Day of Peace with art activities and youth performances outside and throughout the museum. Free outdoor performances will take place from 10 am to noon and indoor activities (free with admission) from 10 am until 4 pm.

The entertainment and activities schedule includes:
· Lowell Lizards Drum Troupe, 10 am

· Suzuki Strings of Madison, 10:45 am

· Forward Marching Band, 11:30 am

· Rich Baumann Concert on the Rooftop Ramble, 3 pm

· Peace Projects in the Art Studio, 10 am – 4 pm

In the event of inclement weather, outdoor activities will be moved indoors, and regular admission rates will apply. For visitor information, go to MadisonChildrensMuseum.org.

Are You Ready for Some Resale?

Both the Moms of Multiples and Half-Pint Resale are this weekend!

The 8th Semi-Annual Half-Pint Resale is Friday Sept. 9 – Saturday Sept. 10 at the Goodman Community Center (149 Waubesa Street). Public sale runs Friday from 2 – 9 pm (volunteers and consigners get to shop in the morning) and again Saturday 9 am – 12 pm, followed by the Half-Price sale from 1 -5 pm.

For more information you can check out our recent blog post or visit the Half-Pint website.

The Mothers of Multiples Fall/Winter Resale is Saturday, September 10th at Keva in Middleton. Shopping is open to the public from 10 am – 12:30 pm with a $2 entrance fee.

Shoppers should arrive 1-2 hours before the event to Check-in (the earlier you arrive, the closer you are to the front of the line).

“Imagine over 100 sellers all in one spot selling boys and girls clothing sizes 0-16, shoes, baby equipment, maternity clothes, nursing items, strollers, car seats, videos, books, toys and many other items that will fit into a baby’s or child’s world! You do not have to have twins or triplets to shop as many of the items are sold individually. Don’t miss this resale event! We sell only high quality, gently used items at a fraction of the retail price.”

Go here for more information regarding the sale, including rules and guidelines. (no children are allowed at this sale)

And if this weekend isn’t enough, the Just Between Friends Fall Kids & Maternity Consignment Sale will be held at the end of this month! (more info on that next week)

MCM closed next week, Hours/Days of operation to change

Madison Children’s Museum will be closed Monday, September 5 (Labor Day), through Friday, September 9, for its biannual Maintenance Week.

The closed period will allow museum staff to deep-clean the facility, and make improvements and repairs to exhibits.

When the museum reopens at 9:30 am on Saturday, September 10, it will begin a new schedule through Memorial Day: open 9:30 am – 5 pm Tuesdays – Sundays (closed on Mondays), and no longer open on Thursday nights. The exception will be during Madison Metropolitan School District’s winter and spring breaks, when the museum will be open on Mondays for special programming.

The museum’s monthly free admission night will change to the first Wednesday of the month beginning October 5. On these Twilight Wednesdays, admission will be free from 5 – 8 pm.

Between Memorial Day and Labor Day 2012, the museum will return to a seven-days-a-week schedule, open from 9:30 am – 5 pm to serve local families and tourists while school is out of session.

For details on the new hours of operation and a list of all the dates during the 2011–12 academic year when the museum will be closed, please go here.