Oh Joy

my favorite apps for kids... 25 Jan 2017

Storybots App

Recently, when I flew home to Philly for the holidays, some of you saw a story of my kids playing with different apps on the airplane and inquired about my favorite apps for kids. So, I wanted to share some of my recent favorites with you!

Now, since I know you will ask or may be curious about my opinions on screen time or how much time my kids get, I'll tell you what we do. We limit our kids' screen time (which includes TV and/or iPad) to less than one hour per day. Sometimes they use it, and sometimes we are busy doing things outside of the house that we never see a screen for the entire day. But, in general, an hour is the limit that works best for our family (which usually works out to 30 mins while I am prepping dinner and 30 minutes after dinner). However, I have noticed that when my kids are on the iPad, they sometimes get super zoned in and don't play with anything else at the same time, so now we limit iPad time to weekends only...or special times like long car rides, flights, or sick days. Of course, every family is different and every parent has their own rules, that's just what we've decided to implement. Now, onto some of my favorites and why...

Endless Spanish

Endless Wordplay

Originator apps — Originator created one of my all-time favorite kid's app called Endless Alphabet which helps so much with letter recognition and learning the sounds of each letter. The animated letters and stories they apply to each word are so fun that I am mesmerized every time I've watch my kids play it. They've since expanded to Endless Reader, Endless Wordplay, Endless Numbers, Endless Spanish, and more!

Sago Mini App

Sago Mini App

Sago Mini apps — Kids love characters, and if you don't necessarily want them watching TV characters on an app, Sago Mini is one of my favorites. The animals are so cute and lovable and they go on simple, but fun adventures. This is a good series for a younger toddler as they begin to recognize cause and effect.

Storybots App

Storybots App

Storybots apps - Storybots mixes games, books, and videos from apps, online series, and a Netflix show to create a ton of fun interactive options for young kids. I love the topics like "How Does an Airplane Fly?" and "Why Do I Have to Brush My Teeth?".

Osmo App

Osmo App

Osmo apps - This set is for slightly older toddlers and kids, but I love the interactivity of Osmo which combines the iPad with physical objects that kids can interact with so it crosses real life play with virtual play. A couple of our favorites include the Tangram and Coding games which stimulate problem solving and creativity.

What I love about some of my favorite apps is they are part of a growing series. So, if your kids like one, chances are they will like others from that same company so there will be new versions that grow with your kids! If there are any others you guys love, please share, I'd love to hear!

a spring adventure kit! 26 Apr 2016

Adventure-kit_01-blog

The weather has been so nice here in LA lately that it's really making me and my family change up our normal weekend routine and go on more unplanned adventures. Sometimes we'll have an impromptu picnic in a new park or drive to go find dinner not knowing where we'll end up. In order to prepare for any adventures that might come our way, we've put together a little Spring Adventure Kit.

Pack a bag with a few of these essentials, toss it in your car or by the door, and you're prepared to have instant fun ready to go whether you're heading to the park, to a friend's house, or to visit a relative last minute. Here's what's in my kit...

1. a kite, 2. Oh Joy! First Aid Kit and BAND-AID® Brand Adhesive Bandages by Oh Joy! to be ready in case of any boo-boos, 3. memory card game, 4. jump rope, 5. picnic mat, 6. binonculars, 7. bubbles, 8. mini flashlight, 9. sidewalk chalk,  10. water bottles, 11. a ball, 12. instant camera and film, and 13. a duffle or tote to hold everything in it's place when on the go! 

P.S. Everything here can be found in stores or online exclusively at Target.

{Photo by Casey Brodley, styling by Julia Wester.}

a growing family portrait... 29 Jan 2015

  Oh Joy Family Portrait / Thank You Card by Rifle Paper Co.

When Ruby was born a few years ago, I had custom thank you cards illustrated by the super talented Anna Bond of Rifle Paper Co. We sent them out to friends and family for all the amazing gifts and tokens of love we received. Once we ran out of the cards, I thought it would be fun to update it again with a slightly older Ruby. And since then, we now update it every year or so (with our newest shown above).

Oh Joy Family Portrait by Rifle Paper Co.

I loved the mini portraits so much, I started framing one of the cards from each year and hanging them by our front door. Sadly, our cat family has shrunk, but it's fun to see how our human family has grown over the last few years!

{Photos by Casey Brodley for Oh Joy. Painted portraits by Rifle Paper Co.}

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