Sunday, December 8, 2013

A Children's Media Lover's Holiday Wish List 2013

There just aren't enough hours in the day to continue writing this blog, but I couldn't let a holiday go by without creating my ideal children's media wish list. Friend Sarah and I have spent the year curating interesting items for this post on Pinterest...check out our board!

1. Puffin's beautiful new book series features cover art by my favorite chalk artist Dana Tanamachi

2. Do I love Oliver Jeffers enough to tattoo his illustrations to my arms? Maybe not, but I do love him enough to temporary tattoo it! Thanks, Tattly.

3. This year revealed the wonders of the New York Public Library to me. They have every book you might want to read, FOR FREE. Researching a particular topic, reading for pleasure, or testing out a new coffee table book? Go get your library card! What are you waiting for?

4. Kate Spade's circulation card iPhone case is the perfect gift for your book loving friend or someone who works in publishing.

5. I love this reinterpretation of the first Baby-Sitters Club book cover.

6 and 7. The color test print has been on my mind a lot-harkening back to industry of yore! Try and snag this limited edition Longchamp tote to be sold selectively this winter or sport a color test TV necklace at your next planning meeting.

8. Make Something Today Even If It Sucks...because practice makes perfect and creation may cause inspiration for your next big hit.

9. Jim Henson made a lot of something every day, and some of it sucked (who knew?!). This dense read is full of interesting anecdotes about Henson's dedicated career and how he created some of the most memorable properties in 20th century history (and beyond)!

10. This Anne of Green Gables teapot made me giggle with delight and inspires great conversation about Gilbert Blythe during tea time.

11. Did you know there are enough LEGO for each human to have 80 pieces? What would you do with your 80 pieces

Thursday, February 7, 2013

(Wo)Man or Muppet: Kermit

Today I honor a leader, visionary, and friend...a Kermit! Happy Birthday, Sarah W.

Not only is Sarah a "Kermit" in my book, she's also a huge Muppet fan. Last October, Sarah shared her Halloween Muppet costume tradition.

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1. Sleep with your eyes open thanks to this Kermit eye mask

2. Whether it's a particularly chilly day or you're dressing up like Kermie for Halloween, these snoods take the cake

3. New webbed feet for diving or swimming around the frog pond

4. Sesame Street news anchor Kermit could use a new hat from Goorin Bros...

5. ...and a new trench

6. It's time to upgrade from '80s Robot, and Romo by Romotive is the perfect new friend

7. Whether you say it in English or in French, it's just not easy being green

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Man Or Muppet: Bert

I can't help but associate people that I care about with Muppets. How could a Muppet-loving gal like myself not think about these things? Don’t deny it. You do it too. It’s what made Man or Muppet so funny.

Today, I launch a new series of posts with a board for my guy, the Bert to my Ernie. As I was thinking about the best birthday gift for him, I listed all the things that described him or that he liked. My list included: smart, tech savvy, tall, stoic with a penchant for silliness, likes sweaters, loves pigeons. He's an undeniable Bert (and maybe there’s a little Scooter in there, too).

So this is what I would buy Bert…

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1- A sweater is the perfect combo style and warmth. Snaz it up with bright colors, stripes, or a monogram (so Ernie can't steal it).
2- If you want to share your Bert-ness with the world, these are the hats and gloves for you. The gloves are perfect for impromptu puppet shows.
3- Want to convey your affection for pigeons on your most beloved tech device? Rock this bird-loving iPhone case.
4- Saddle shoes are IN and there's more variety than ever. Now Bert can own more than just one pair of shoes.
5- Bert's paper clip collection is expanding with new selections of different paper clip shapes and colors!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

A Children's Media Lover's Wish List 2012

Last year's wish list was so successful and really fun to make. I couldn't wait to do it again this year, and I've spent the past few months bookmarking everything from Pinterest, Etsy, Amazon, and random adventures, that I thought might be good for the post. 

This year, I tried to create a mix of fun things that children's media peeps should have in their toolbox, as well as ways to show their love for the field. It does a pretty good of supporting my mission to make this site the official lifestyle blog for people in children's media. 

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Click on the picture for a larger view!

1. This sarcastic mug is a nod to the Trunchbull from Matilda. I can't wait until Matilda the Musical makes its way to NYC so I can get this awesome mug for my desk.

2. Writer's block got you down? Grab a few of these Story Cubes to help you come up with some new ideas and story elements. Also a fun game to play with friends big and small.

3. Going for some special subtlety on New Year's Eve? These Jem earrings are truly outrageous!

4. For the publisher friend who has everything: book fair in a bag created by Sweet and Lovely.

5. Pulled from Jim Henson's Red Book, a journal of his day-to-day musings and activities, Imagination Illustrated should be sitting on your shelf.

6. We preach high production value every day, which Fairie Tale Theatre didn't always have...but these fairy tales have celebrities and whimsical story elements that are sure to capture your child at heart and satisfy your '80s craving. Thanks, Shelley Duvall.

7. Ever wish you could smell like Play Doh? Me too.

8. Just a little something to share your love and appreciation, and they make pretty spectacular party favors: giant super ball in a You're Super! drawstring bag. Made by yours truly and available in my Etsy shop!

9. The Threadless Sesame Street tees are out...and these four are my favorites!

And perhaps the most children's media-worthy gift of all: a tax deductible donation to Children's Media Association!

What's on your wish list?

Monday, December 3, 2012

Children's Media Association Holiday Party

It's a free for all...literally. Come celebrate the holidays, catch up with friends, network, and nosh on some yummy apps.

Head over to the CMA website for more details and to RSVP!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Casting Jem

Jem is truly outrageous, and the main character's perfect combination of super hero, rock star, and girl next door means she's an aspirational character for girls of both 1986 and 2012. Last year, I saw a Halloween-themed episode of Jem and was so inspired. Though the animation was definitely dated, the story was still transferable to 2012, and the series maintained its playability. Is it possible we're due for a Jem redux?

Just the other day, I was perusing costumes when I came across this jem (pun intended)
It was then, that I became determined to pen the live-action Jem script.

What’s that? You’ve already signed some fantastically brilliant female comedy and/or teen writer? Fine. I’ll settle for cast recommendations. If I were to have a hand in the Jem production, I would round out the star studded cast with independent lady musicians who actually rock.

I think Esperanza Spalding would make a great Shana Elmsford:
Neko Case as a little bit older and a little bit wiser Synergy:

Don’t forget Heather Robb as Misfit Roxanne "Roxy" Pellegrini:
Elizabeth Ziman as genius Misfit keytarist Mary "Stormer" Phillips
Lucius would need to make an appearance. They could probably even be another supergroup competitor.

Who would you cast in the lead role?

Monday, November 5, 2012

Guest Blogger: Ashley Moulton

Ashley Moulton is a preschool television production coordinator and member of Children's Media Association

The Presidential Election for Kids

I have lots of personal memories of presidential elections throughout my childhood. I remember voting for Bill Clinton as a kindergartner in my school’s election because he played saxophone and I thought that was cool. In middle school, learning about the Bush v. Gore case in my Social Studies class illustrated the mysteries of the Electoral College. In high school, I was a political pundit on my high school television station’s live coverage of our Mock Democratic Convention.

I’m sure that lots of kids will remember this election, although perhaps equally as many kids echo the sentiment of four-year-old viral sensation Abigael Evans, who tearfully wailed that she was “tired of Bronco Bamma and Mitt Romney."  If you’re interested in helping kids engage with the 2012 Presidential Election (hopefully sans tears), here are great ways to help them learn more!

7 tools to help kids engage with the election:

When I was a kid, I always wanted to grow up to be the President. This excellent game, by former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor’s iCivics organization, gives kids the chance to find out just how hard it is to be President. Through your own Presidential avatar, you can make speeches, sign bills, and declare war.  I admit: this kid at heart really enjoyed playing!
Print out colorable line drawings of both Barack and Mitt, or better yet, indulge your own presidential ambitions by drawing your own face on a campaign poster.

3. Watch kid focused news specials about the candidates and the issues:
Linda Ellerbee’s “Nick News: Kids Pick the President” specials show the candidates from a kid’s perspective. Hear the candidates’ views on issues important to kids such as the economy, illegal immigration, and what constitutes Barack Obama’s most embarrassing moment. Interestingly, the results of the online voting that corresponded with Nickelodeon’s “Kids Pick the President” initiative indicated that if it were up to kids, Obama would be re-elected. The kids have predicted the winner for 5 out of the last 6 presidential elections, and only time will tell if they improve upon their record this year.
Click on states to see the different combinations of states it will take to win the Electoral College. Or, predict the states each candidate will win and share your map to show off your expert guesses!

Brain Pop has great animated videos that answer questions like “What makes you a Democrat or a Republican?,” “How do people get to be president of the United States?,” and “What happens during voting, how does it work?.”

Choose adorable cartoon versions of the Presidential and Vice Presidential candidates, icons for important issues like healthcare and education, and backgrounds to make it look nice… and voila! You’ve made your own digital bumper sticker. You can save your sticker to the PBS Kids website, and vote on stickers other kids have made.

7. Take a kid to the polls
One of the best ways to interest a kid in the election is to take him or her to the polling place with you. I have fond memories of “helping” my mom vote by pressing buttons in the voting booth. By the time I was old enough to vote myself, I was very disappointed that voting booths no longer had levers to pull (at least in my state). But one thing’s for sure: going to vote with my mom instilled the idea in me that voting is important.

I hope that some of these tools help your little one become more interested in the Presidential Election!

Keep the conversation going @AshboNYC.