Let the Blog Carnivals Begin!

As the editor of two social networks for North Carolina parents, Triangle TRACKS and Charlotte TRACKS, I decided to host my first blog carnival via both sites.

We ended up with eight participants who manage their own blogs. Some of their posts are extremely insightful, others incredibly creative! But ALL of them focus on kids and parenting. I’ve listed excerpts from each below with a link to the rest of the participants’ posts on their own blogs. If you like what you’re reading, post a comment and let these talented ladies know!

The top three posts that generate the most discussion (in the form of comments or questions) will be awarded their own promotional box on the Triangle TRACKS home page for two weeks, and include a link to the winning blogs’ RSS feed or subscription page. We’ll announce the winners Sept. 4. Here we go…

Where My Heart Rides Away
By Janel Bunten from her “Dandelion Dayz” blog

Tinted windows make it hard for me to see the faces inside.
The driver waits for the activity to die down before she pulls away from the curb.
I’m just staring and waving at faces I cannot see. Hoping for a couple just to see me.
Then I see him.
He must be on his knees because I see his whole face now.
He is waving to me. Smiling.
My heart leaps out of my chest.
I wave back. Smile back. Blow some kisses.
He blows some back.
He waves again.
Suddenly, I only see the top of his head. I’m sure the driver has told him to sit down now.
Then, she pulls off and just like that my heart rides away in a big yellow bus.
Read more of Janel’s post here.

You Might Be Cute, But Your Sh*t Still Stinks
By Cyndi Soter O’Neil from her “Junius and Pippi Take the Cake” blog

When Junius was about 10 weeks old, we took him to my cousin’s wedding. Because he was prone to spitting up in quantities that defied his tiny body, I didn’t dress him in his fancy clothes until we were in the church parking lot — didn’t want to ruin the look. It was one of those beautiful white, pintuck oufits that requires ironing and has impossibly tiny buttons up the back — one that my husband had worn when he was a baby and his mother saved for us. Completely impractical, but Junius looked so sweet.

So sweet, that is, until his enormous pooplosion leaked out all over the fancy clothes (did I mention it was white?) and onto my husband’s suit.
Read more of Cyndi’s post here.

2009 Raleigh-Area Consignment Roundup
By Holly Ross from her “Holly’s Golden Twig” blog

It’s that time of year again… back to school shopping will start all too soon and parents will be sorting through clothing & toys to decide what still fits and what needs to be replaced. Almost a year and a half ago I discovered a new favorite hobby in bargain shopping called Children’s Consignment Sales. I posted a blog last summer about my initial experiences with consignment shopping. Since then I can easily say that I’ve been to more than a dozen sales total, which are kind of like giant cooperative yard sales. I’m still by no means an expert, but do eagerly look forward to the chance to get nearly-brand-new clothing and toys for my child for about 25% of the original retail cost. Even toys or “play clothes” that look a little worn work fine for a toddler… she doesn’t care or know the difference!
Read more of Holly’s post here.

Creepy Toys and Mommy Guilt!
By Lindsey Hignite, from her “Mama Sews: Random Goodness from a Mama Who Sews…” blog

So I’ve been going through all our old toys and clothes for an upcoming consignment sale.
(BTW, if you’re in the Cary/Apex, NC area, you simply must stop by the Twice as Nice sale this Friday and Saturday to pick up great deals on children’s toys and clothing. And make sure you follow them on facebook or twitter so you know about upcoming sales. Fabulous!)
As I was going through my daughter’s toys, I ran across some that I find truly creepy. And, no, I’m not talking about plastic snakes which my kids love to hide in my bed in hopes of hearing me scream.
The newest is the Polly Pocket dolls and pets with interchangeable heads and bodies.
Then there’s the Barbie dog that was gifted to my daughter by my oldest brother.
First, Barbie feeds the dog a treat. And then, you guessed it, the dog poops the treat out. But what’s so disturbing is that Barbie is to scoop the poop into the doggie trash like a responsible pet owner. But look what is on the other side of the trash can. The doggie treat box! All the poop is diverted from the can into the food box. The poor dog has to eat his own poop.
There is something wrong with that.
Read more of Lindsey’s post here.

Fresh Air
By Janice Dusseau Jones from her “Jan About Town” blog

Last year, I left a 14 year career in television- to get some fresh air.
I am now a stay-at-home mom.
A write-at-home mom?
Professional mom?
Domestic engineer?
Bon-bon eater?
I don’t mind “good wife” either.
Why did I leave?
One January day, I admitted to myself that I no longer liked my job.
In fact, the normal stresses of being a broadcast meteorologist now seemed unbearable.
But, specifically, I could not think of what was really wrong. What needed to be fixed? Why was I unhappy?
That’s when I admitted it. I WAS unhappy. As soon as I admitted it, it got worse.
Read more of Janice’s post here.

S.O.A.P. Episode One – All My Children
By Jackie Bedard from her “North Carolina Wills and Trusts” blog

Welcome to the first episode in our series, Soap Operas About Planning. I thought I’d try out something a little different to show how taking the time to prepare today can be a huge gift to your family and loved ones. Through a series of stories, I will compare and contrast the lives of families that have not adequately planned and those that have. Although thinking about one’s own demise is a scary and uncomfortable prospect, I hope you’ll find the stories (and my attempt at fiction!) interesting and educational. This post is also part of the blog carnival being hosted by Triangle TRACKS, a website full of resources and ideas for parents in the Triangle area. Finally, be sure to see our raffle details at the bottom.
Read more of Jackie’s post here.

Do Your Children Have Goals?
By Eileen Batson from her “Batson Group Marketing and PR Blog”

A friend of mine sent me an email describing what she has been up to and I thought it very useful to pass the content on.
She has been delivering a series of workshops to school kids for several years. One of the questions she asks them to to is to write down their goals in life.
Sadly, more than once, she found herself surprised when a child said he has no goal. They come to school because that’s what kids do or because their parents will be angry with them if they don’t. They go through the day suffering because they are forced to do things without any understanding, and without having any idea as to how it will really contribute to their lives.
After working with thousands of children, adults and businessmen, she observed that when a boy/girl, teenager, or an adult has no goals in life – they get bored easily. From this point on, the person’s interest declines and the individual begins to look for games and “interesting” things to occupy themself.
With the lack of goals and without encouragement and guidance in their life about how to set worthwhile goals, the person – feeling emptiness – goes hunting for excitement. And this is the shortest road to violence. It starts with teasing others, using dirty words and cursing and moves on to strikes, alcohol, drugs, stabbing and worse.
Read more of Eileen’s post here.

Let’s Shop! Tips for Shopping at Consignment Sales
By Kelly Rives from her “The Divine Children’s Show” blog

Well, we have discussed the details of selling your children’s outgrown clothing, but now we need to get to the important stuff! SHOPPING! There are several things that you can do that will make you shopping experience super efficient.
Know your kid’s sizes.
Spend some time before the sale trying last falls clothes on your children. Have they really gone up a size, or are they still about the same? What size do you think they will be wearing next February/March at the end of the winter season? It is much easier to shop if you do not have your kids with you. However, this can make the “size” question tough. But we have seen several people come up with some clever ideas.
Read more of Kelly’s blog here.

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