This Week in Houston! June 15-21, 2020

This city does not slow down – it just adapts! There are some great things to do this week if you are ready to get out and about. If not, the virtual opportunities are still bountiful. If all else fails, grab a book, find some water, and be as fabulous as a pool flamingo! Have a great week, Houston! Small Business Shoutout Bexar Barbecue, a long time favorite from the Tomball Farmer’s Market, opened its first storefront restaurant on June 13th! There are indoor and outdoor dining options – as well as take-out! Save us some candied ends! Support small businesses! Have a great business that has had to shake things up during the COVID-19 pandemic? Recommend them and their services to other Houstonians. Comment below or shoot us an email at ghm@greaterhoustonmoms.com Virtual Resources 1. Houston Family Nature Challenge Join the Children’s Environmental Literacy Foundation Houston-based Educator team for a meaningful, fun-filled Family Nature Challenge taking place over 3 weeks in June! The challenges are self-paced and allow for schedule-flexibility for families. You will receive a challenge each Monday, accompanied by thought-provoking mini-lessons, educational tools to enhance understanding, and Texas-based guest speakers who will share valuable environmental insights for

How To Build The Best Balloon-Powered Sponge Boat!

Let’s set sail for a STEAM Summer starting with a Balloon Powered Sponge Boat! Most of our kiddos’ activities are completely canceled or at least significantly altered. But, that does not mean we can not have a great summer. This sponge boat is the first post for a summer of fun STEAM-themed summer activities. Never miss a post. Subscribe in the footer to be alerted of new activities! MATERIALS: Scissors Permanent Marker Ruler (optional) Balloon & a smaller balloon (optional) Flexible Straw Rubber Band Sponge (at least ¾” thick) pencil (optional) BALLOON-POWERED SPONGE BOAT DIRECTIONS:  1. First, measure the short side of the sponge and mark the center. 2. On the same end of the sponge, measure down the long sides the same distance as it was to the center in #1. Mark it on each side. Connect the side mark to the center mark, on each side, to create 45-degree angles for the bow of the boat. 3. Cut along those lines to make the pointed bow. Discard the pieces. 4. Next, from the bow point, find the center of your sponge by measuring halfway down the length of the boat.  Mark just behind that.  5. Adults, use the

‘The Rural Diaries’ by Hilarie Burton Morgan

‘The Rural Diaries’ by Hilarie Burton Morgan is a breath of fresh air. The perfect memoir for the One Tree Hill generation!

How to Make Gettysburg a Memorable and Fun Topic

Today’s Guest Post is from Sara Gruber about her daughter’s experience learning about the Battle of Gettysburg from her backyard. Thanks for sharing! The new norm? Sitting at the kitchen table, trying to do my “job” while homeschooling my two daughters. Oh, you have a literature Zoom at 2:30 pm? My mind runs through today’s to-do list… which report can I finish in that 30-minute window? Your worksheet is taking a while? Maybe I can draft a media release now so I won’t be up as late tonight. Every minute is painstakingly filled to maximize productivity and it’s somehow become our normal. What’s more? Even though much of our time together is spent homeschooling, I want it to be fun; something they look back on fondly, which means I have to preserve my sanity in these beautiful daily tasks. And when the time comes to switching over to focusing on work, I have a find a way to do so without mom guilt because I need to provide for my family. What I’m discovering is that there are a lot of fun, free resources out there that engage and educate my kiddos. Mixed-Reality App that Recreates Battle of Gettysburg Gives

How to Make the Best Grilled Cheese Sandwich of All Time

Grilled cheese sandwiches are deceptively simple. They hit all the pleasure points – melty, buttery, crunchy perfection! But what if you could elevate your eating experience? I know. How can you improve on perfection? But, you can! How To Up Your Basic GC Game CHEESE COMBINATIONS Some cheese melts well while others add depth of flavor. A combination of two or more will strike a great balance. For melting you cannot go wrong with Mild cheddar, Colby, Monterey Jack, Swiss, and Mozzarella. These are younger and have more moisture. But, for a flavor impact you need something aged. Try a sharp cheddar, aged Swiss, Asiago, or Gruyère. Pro-Tip: Do not just slap a slice on the bread. Break them a part and overlap them so the flavors meld. BREAD Use dense bread with small holes like a hearty white sandwich or country bread. The cheese won’t melt through. That being said, maybe you want a nice tangy, adult flavor that only a crusty sourdough can impart. #RulesAreMeantToBeBroken EMBRACE THE FAT Use fat generously – spread the butter or mayonnaise across your bread from end to end Butter is a classic. Nothing else will give you that butter flavor. However, mayo

Spring 2020 kids book list

Spring 2020: The Best New Kid’s Books Your Family Will Love

Spring 2020 is here! New books are hitting the shelves (virtually, speaking). Thanks to an amazing group of publishers we have been reading advanced copies to find our favorites. Our top five picks are books your kids will love and you will not mind reading again and again. Which are you ready to read? A Is for Another Rabbit, by Hannah Batsel Who doesn’t love funny and charmingly aggravating rabbits! This is not your traditional ABC book. Every letter is not highlighted in a big bold font and, as the story goes on it devolves into wascally wabbit madness and the letters are used much more loosely. But, it is totally that kind of book! Before you start to read be prepared to do voices – your kids will like it so much more! You need a fun freewheeling Lagomorph-loving rabbit voice and an uptight losing-it owl (as a parent you should be able to channel that one pretty easily). What I loved about the book is that it is fun, does not take itself too seriously, and mixes in big words (like tenacious, rambunctious, and obstreperous). The art is great! Our poor owl, who is just trying to make

Week Four: Our Virtual Houston! What’s Going on This Week, April 6-12

Here we are again, computer to computer! I hope you have found your at-home rhythm or are getting close! As the situation is evolving more and more people, companies, and friends are switching gear and going virtual! In the past few weeks, we have shared a lot of great resources from tips for a productive homeschool to helping kids cope during this really stressful time (including a direct link to an amazing Time Capsule printable so they can document this moment in history). The vibe around town is full-blown #HoustonStrong and the virtual world is still improving (thank you, Dolly!). Below are some great activities you can participate in this week “locally” and abroad. As we have all gotten on board with virtual the opportunities have exploded. Local and Houston-based (even though they are virtual) are added to our calendar (and this week’s are listed below). All the others have now been added to various online “round-ups”. We are linking some of the best ones we found below. To access our previous categorized list check out this link. Have a great week, Houston! Small Business Shoutout Support small businesses! Have a great business that has had to shake things up

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