Mary Jo Peckham Park In Katy, TX Has Affordable Swim Lessons

I wanted to pass this along before it is too late.  Mary Jo Peckham Park in Katy, TX offers Red Cross swimming lessons for kids and everyone.  The slots fill up pretty quick.  Last year I had to physically drive over to the community center and sign up for the lessons.  Here

This is not the Peckham pool.  Just a generic pool.

This is not the Peckham pool. Just a generic pool.

is the website: http://www.pct3.hctx.net/cc_maryjopeckham/activities.aspx.

My kids had a great time since it is an indoor pool.  Pretty much all the Houston parks have Red Cross swimming lessons but I live in Katy and that is what I know about.  More about the facility later.

Hurry and call before all the slots are gone.

How To Plan A Kid Birthday Party In The Houston Area In 20 Easy Steps

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My son’s birthday party was today and I am too pooped to upload pictures.  Here is my homemade  milk chocolate cake from last Friday night. 

 It was a great party.  You know cake, moonwalk with a slide (Big Ups to Lonestar Moonwalks and Party Supply), sherbert party punch(did not go over well), pinatas (one of the best things about the party), pizza, goody bags, party website..the usual stuff.

This week I will give you the tips you need to save money and throw a party that looks like tons of trouble but is not really that darn much.  During this economic slowdown in the country parents are looking to save money on a birthday party but they are not willing to just not have a party.  People will always scrap together two cents to either pay for a kids birthday party or pay for a wedding (of course in Texas I will include the Quinceañera party for young ladies too) no matter how broke they are or what bill needs to be paid.

By the way,  Lonestar Moonwalks and Party Supply is offering a 10% discount to parents in the Houston area who mention they saw this post on the web.  More about my pleasant experience with this company later.

Coming on Monday, April 20th.

April Easter Egg Hunt Events In The Houston Area

Easter Egg Hunts

Easter Egg Hunts

Updated April 9th, 2009

If you know about an upcoming event and would like it posted, please leave me a comment and I will reply.

Please call and confirm details before attending the following events:


Rabbits!

Rabbits!

Best Houston Family Magazines

Houston Family Magazine

Houston Family Magazine

Parents, if you are looking for daycare, after-school activities or family fun resources then run down to Kroger’s or Fiesta and pick up “Houston Family Magazine” and “Katy Parent”  Magazine.  The magazines are free and the content also can be accessed online at Houston Family Magazine and Katy Parent Magazine.

Every month in Houston Family Magazine there is a contest sponsered by the magazine to win the month’s in-demand children’s item.  This month the magazine features a contest where families can enter for a chance to win two DVD movies.  Go to http://www.houstonfamilymagazine.com for your chance to win “The Great Wall’ and “The Chinese Market” DVDs.   In addition, there is the opportunity to win a family four-pack of passes to a special screening of “Monsters Vs. Aliens”.     The February issue of HFM also includes a camp directory for those parents who are already thinking about activities for their kids during the summer months.  If you do not have time to run by a grocery story and pick up a free copy, you can purchase a subscription for 12 months or 24 months.

Katy Parent Magazine

Katy Parent Magazine is also a free magazine packed with tons of fun family stuff to do in Katy as well as the Houston area.  I found my children’s dentist Dr. Ingrid Duebbert of Kingsland dental group, P.A.  in the Katy Parent.  Every month the magazine lists a Fun-Time Calendar with events, prices, times and locations around town.  There are plenty of discounts for parents with the “Mention This Ad” tag for activities like “Times Square Entertainment” on the Grand Parkway.  The magazine does a great job of listing events and daycare centers that are located  in and near the Katy area.

Katy Residents HEB At Fry Rd/Mason Ground Beef Recall

If you bought ground beef at the HEB grocery store at Fry Road and Mason, please return to the store asap.   According to the article in the Chron, there could possible be metal pieces in the meat.  Thanks to Alison who Twitters on Twitter for the FYI.

Check out his article in the Houston Chronicle http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/front/6263637.html.

Girl Scout Troop Being Formed At Rhoads Elementary in Katy Texas

A Girl Scout troop is being formed at Rhoads Elementary in Katy, Texas.  The school is located on Clay Road next to Fry road.  There is not a lot of parent involvement in the school because of the demographic and because it is new.  If a business or company can help the school form more of a community, please contact the PTA and help us out.  There are so many students who would benefit from an after-school program.  These are kids from under middle-class families who need an outlet.

Please Obama.  Please make every school have an after-school enrichment program.  These kids should learning how to dance, sew, make art, skate, fix computers, gardening, learn other languages etc.

Katy, Texas is just like any Title I area.  The parents need help and the school needs help.

I would love to start an after school robotics program but I need help from area businesses and other parents.

All schools need after-school enrichment.  The education system needs to be over-hauled with technology….just my little opinion.

I plan to apply for a job in Obama’s cabinet as some type of educational aide.  Good luck to me and to the world.

Houston Girl Scouts and First LEGO League Robotics Competition

Girl Scouts of San Jacinto Council Houston organizes several teams of girls to compete in the First LEGO League robotics competition in January. There is much more to Girl Scouts than cookies and camp outs.

Guess what!?  I am one of the coaches (I know, I am surprised too).  My daughter loves computers and LEGOS so why not get her involved with a group of girls who have the same interests.

Since science and technology are not one of my strongest skills, I am using a book entitled “First Lego League the unofficial guide” written by two young science wizards named James Floyd Kelly and Jonathan Daudelin as a tutorial guide.

Although the book is very helpful especially when it comes to  team formation and organizing the league, I do wish they could have dumbed the robotic construction detail down a little more for people who want to learn about the gears but in tiny baby steps.  Also,  they could have added a few more pictures.  Overall the book is helpful and I will continue to keep you updated on how I am using the book in preparation for the competition.

As the coach, I am learning all of these new robotic programming skills about 48 hours before the girls learn the skills themselves.  I wish that this program was in every elementary school in the United States.  Kids need to learn about science and technology in an environment that encourages creativity not rote memorization.

My smart team of Girl Scouts will not only compete in an robotic programming tournament but they are also responsible for preparing a report that proposes solutions to the climate change problem that currently exists in Houston.  The girls are learning about science in a fun creative way without the restrictions of a classroom environment where students are punished for making a mistake.  The team learns from their mistakes and turns them into opportunities to teach themselves what to do better as a team.

My son is only 6 years old but he has tagged along to the team meetings and seems to have the talent of robotic programming.  The FLL has a competition for 6-9 year-olds too.    If you are a parent who is interested in having their 6-9 year old compete in the Junior FLL, please leave a comment and we will form a team.  There are many schools and home schooled kids who train all Fall for the competition in the Winter.

The robot/software/kit can be purchased at any time for kids or adults (my husband loves to experiment with the gears). The robot and the software called “LEGO Mindstorms” can be purchased at the Baybrook Mall LEGO store or you could order the set on line at LEGO.Com.   Here is the website link:  http://mindstorms.lego.com.

Girl Scouts of San Jacinto Council will also be forming a Robotics interest group in the next few weeks.   If you have a daughter who loves or even dislikes science and math, this is the perfect opportunity for her to learn plus have fun at the same time.

Here is the website:  http://www.gssjc.org/ or contact Julie Deeter at jdeeter@sjgs.org 713-292-0203 for more information.