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Family, Gratitude, Waldorf Education

Reverence and Gratitude: The Power of Verses for Children

 

Dear Friends,

Has it really been more than three months since I last posted here at Moon Child? Yikes!

Where have I been?

We had a very busy holiday season at Bella Luna Toys in November and December. My staff and I were putting all our time and energy in fulfilling holiday orders. We are grateful to so many of you for your support and being part of Bella Luna’s growth. I hope your holidays were filled with joy and love!

January brought our yearly task of end-of-year inventory, then I took a much-needed vacation to southern California to visit family and friends, and to see my son William who is a freshman at USC.

In February, I traveled to New York City for the NY Toy Fair, where I was excited to discover a bunch of wonderful new natural toys to introduce in 2014. Some have already made an appearance at Bella Luna Toys, so be sure to check out our What’s New? page if you haven’t recently.

The new year also brought the hiring of a new full-time staff member. Amy Sabaka, whom I’ve known ever since my son William and Amy’s daughter Rachel started first grade together at the Ashwood Waldorf School, is now our customer service manager at Bella Luna Toys. Amy was a kindergarten assistant at Ashwood for a number of years and has had a long relationship with Waldorf education, both as a parent and a teacher.

The next time you call Bella Luna Toys, it is likely that Amy will answer the phone. Be sure to say hi!

But now, with the help of Amy and our fantastic operations manager, Rob Wilson, my time is being freed up to get back to the work I love most—blogging, producing my “Sunday With Sarah” video series, and discovering beautiful new toys and products for families to introduce at Bella Luna Toys.

So now that spring is almost here, I am back—refreshed and renewed, and looking forward to reconnecting with you!

Here’s a new “Sunday With Sarah” video for you.

This week’s video is on on the power of verses in transitioning through the day, and for cultivating a sense of reverence and gratitude in young children. I hope you enjoy it!

With love,

 

Here are the verses shared in the video:

CANDLE LIGHTING

Fire spirit, fire sprite
Share with us your golden light
Come for us our candle light!

MEALTIME BLESSING (Can be spoken or sung)

Earth, who gave to us this food
Sun, who made it ripe and good
Dearest earth and dearest sun,
We’ll not forget what you have done.

Blessings on our mealtime and on each other!

REST TIME/BEDTIME VERSE

Now the sun has gone to bed
The stars are shining overhead
In their nests the birds all sleep
Into their homes the snails will creep
Children now no more will roam
It’s rest time (bedtime) now and we’re safe in our home.

Does your family incorporate verses at home? At what times of day? Please share your favorite verses with us here!

 

 

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Family, Giveaway, Homemaking

Green Your Laundry + A Giveaway!

 

LooHoo Wool Dryer Balls

Have you ever put wool felt balls in your dryer?

No? Well then today I’d like to introduce you to my friend Cyndi Prince.

Cyndi and I have a lot in common—we live in the same community in midcoast Maine, and we are both mothers and business owners aiming to provide healthy, natural, and chemical-free products for children and families.

 

Cyndi Prince, LooHoo Founder

Cyndi is the founder of a great company called LooHoo that produces wool felt dryer balls here in Maine. She formed the business shortly after the birth of her son, having learned about the harmful effects of the chemicals in dryer sheets and fabric softeners.

Wool dryer balls are a natural alternative  that soften clothes safely and really speed up the drying time of large loads of laundry, including cloth diapers. Cyndi has produced her dryer balls in a beautiful variety of hues that brighten up the task of doing laundry and make it more fun!

The inspiration to create LooHoo grew out of  Cyndi’s creative passions (she is also a photographer), and her desire to create a consistently high quality wool dryer ball from local resources, durable enough to last for hundreds of loads.

While I love to hang my clothes on the line, it’s hard to do during the long Maine winters. That’s when I rely on my dryer more. I started out using three LooHoo balls a couple of years ago, and now have six in my dryer. I can attest that they really do speed up drying time, which in turn cuts down on our electric bill and reduces our carbon footprint.

Being the fan that I am of LooHoo, I was delighted when Cyndi generously offered to give away a Deluxe Starter 3-Pack to three readers of Moon Child

LooHoo Deluxe Starter Pack - colors

For today’s giveaway, LooHoo is pleased to offer the following gift to THREE winners:

A Deluxe Starter 3-Pack of LooHoo Wool Dryer Balls

The set comes in an attractive box, making it a perfect gift for a green mama. (LooHoo felt balls are also fun toys and great for juggling!)

Each prize (a $27.99 value) includes free shipping within the 48 contiguous United States. The giveaway is open to all readers, but a winner outside the continental U.S. will be responsible for the cost of shipping.

To enter the giveaway, simply leave a comment on this post letting me know what you think of this product. For additional entries, share on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or on your own blog, and leave a separate comment for each action taken.

Comments will close at 11:59 p.m. PDT on Saturday, November 30. Three winners will be chosen by Random Number Generator and announced on Sunday morning, December 1.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

In addition, Cyndi would like to offer Moon Child readers 20% off their first purchase at loo-hoo.com through December 1, 2013. To receive the discount, enter the code BellaLuna20 into the discount code field at checkout. Thank you, Cyndi!

Leave your comment here to enter and let me know what you think!

Sarah Baldwin signature

 

 

Comments are now closed. Many thanks to all who entered.

Here are our three winners, chosen by Random Number Generator:

#1  ANANDAH, who wrote: “I would love to try these balls. I recently felted an 8 eight inch ball with a felting needle. The ball was the head of a millet baby I made for my son’s Waldorf school. The first millet baby I’ve ever made!”

#2  MELISSA, who wrote: “I’ve been wanting dryer balls for a long time and these look fantastic. The colors are also very calming.”

#3  THERESA, who wrote: “These seem great! Would love to try them.”

Congratulations! Cyndi will get your LooHoo Dryer Balls shipped right off to you. Hope you’ll report back and let us know what you think.

And don’t forget, the coupon code above is good at loohoo.com through the end of the day!

 

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grandparents
Childhood, Family, Giveaway

In Praise of Grandparents (And a Photo Contest!)

I want to share a little secret with you.  I can’t wait to be a grandmother.

Not that I want to rush my kids into having children! They are only 18 and 21. But I AM very much looking forward to the birth, someday, of my first grandchild.

So many of our customers at Bella Luna Toys are grandparents and I LOVE talking with them when they call. When I share my secret with them, they tell me that being a grandparent is more rewarding than they ever could have imagined, and that it’s different from a mother’s love for her child.

They describe an unconditional love, and an overwhelming desire to shower their grandchildren with gifts and affection, and that tell me that it should be a grandparent’s right to spoil their grandchildren!

Below is a childhood picture of my grandmother — born Sarah Laird, who later became Sarah Baldwin when she married my grandfather, and for whom I was named.

Grandparent's Day

My grandmother, Sarah Laird Baldwin

 

My grandmother was one of the most special people in my life. Some of my fondest childhood memories are of summers spent at my grandparents’ house, in the country on the eastern shore of Maryland.

As I got older, my grandmother was someone in whom I could always confide, without fear of judgment. I felt her unconditional love, and could share things with her that I would never tell my parents.

Well, today is Grandparents Day, and while many have complained that it is a made-up holiday, created by the greeting card industry, I think it’s a lovely reminder to take time to reflect with gratitude on our relationships with our own grandparents, and to appreciate the special bond that our parents share with our children.

Grandparent's Day

My father, Robert F. Baldwin, and his grandson Will

 

While I was reflecting on the topic of this week’s blog post, I started looking through family photos and came across this favorite (above) of my dad, who was a banjo player, singing and playing for my one-month-old son, William.

Then I started thinking about how much fun it would be to see YOUR cherished photos of your children with their grandparents.

So I decided to host our first ever photo contest at Bella Luna Toys!

Our contest is hosted on Bella Luna Toys’ Facebook page. You can enter and find all the details there. We are accepting photo submissions through September 14, 20013 at noon, when the voting will begin. The winning photograph will be announced on Sunday September 22 and the winner will receive a $100.00 gift certificate from Bella Luna Toys!

If you are not on Facebook, no worries! Simply e-mail your photo to [email protected] and will will enter your photo in the contest.

So, Happy Grandparent’s Day to all you loving grandmas and grandpas! 

And to all you mamas and papas, be sure to let your parents know how much you appreciate them—not just on Grandparent’s Day, but all year round.

 

 

What are some favorite memories of  YOUR grandparents? What do you most appreciate about your parents’ relationship with your children? Share your reflections and stories here!

 

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