Family Time: ‘Pants’ not the right fit for youngsters
Family Screening Room
“The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2”
Rated: PG-13 (for mature material and sensuality)
Length: 117 minutes
Synopsis: In "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2," based on Ann Brashares' best-selling series of novels, four young women continue the journey toward adulthood that began with "The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants." Now three years later, these lifelong friends embark on separate paths for their first year of college and the summer beyond, but they remain in touch by sharing their experiences with each other as they always have -- with honesty and humor. Discovering their individual strengths, fears, talents and capacity for love through the choices they make, they come to value more than ever the bond they share and the immeasurable power of their friendship.
Violence/gore rating: 2
Sexual-content rating: 4
Profanity rating: 2.5
Scary/tense-moments rating: 2
Drugs/alcohol rating: 2.5
Family Time rating: 3.5. Because of the sexual content, this movie isn’t for youngsters. It’s not as raunchy as the comedies we’ve seen throughout the summer, but it’s something to keep in mind before letting your child see it.
(Ratings are judged on a five-point scale, with 5 being “bad for kids” and 1 being “fine for kids.”)
“The Tales of Beedle the Bard,” by J. K. Rowling
Ages: 9 and older
J.K. Rowling is giving millions of Harry Potter fans worldwide cause for celebration with a wide-release edition of “The Tales of Beedle the Bard,” available Dec. 4. Offering the trademark wit and imagination familiar to Rowling's legions of readers -- as well as Aesop's wisdom and the occasional darkness of the Brothers Grimm -- each of these five tales reveals a lesson befitting children and parents alike: the strength gained with a trusted friendship, the redemptive power of love and the true magic that exists in the hearts of all of us. But the true jewel of this new edition is the enlightening and comprehensive commentary by Professor Albus Dumbledore, who brings his unique wizard's-eye perspective to the collection. (Amazon.com)
Kids Kitchen: Spiced French Toast
4 organic eggs
1/2 cup milk, soy milk or almond milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
Organic butter for the skillet
8 slices Challah bread, or your choice of fresh bread
Fruit-sweetened blueberry jam, or other jam, as desired
Small amount organic apple juice
Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Place a large dinner plate in the warmed oven. Whisk together the eggs, milk, vanilla, cinnamon and nutmeg in a wide, shallow dish and set aside. Heat a nonstick skillet or a cast-iron skillet that has been lightly buttered over medium high heat. Dip each piece of bread, one by one, into the egg and milk mixture. Drain excess mixture and place in the hot skillet. Cook until just browned on the bottom, watching the toast carefully (just a couple of minutes). Turn and brown the other side. Adjust heat to medium, if necessary, to prevent burning. Place in the oven on warmed plate while preparing the remaining pieces. Just before serving, heat the jam in a small saucepan with a small amount of apple juice to desired consistency. Drizzle over the top of the French toast and serve immediately. Serves 4. (www.wholefoodsmarket.com)
Play Inside: “Blokus”
Ages: 5 and older
“Blokus” encourages creative thinking and has received a Mensa award for promoting healthy brain activity. The goal of this game is for players to fit all of their pieces onto the board. When placing a piece, it may not lie adjacent to the player's other pieces but must be placed touching at least one corner of their pieces already on the board. The player who gets rid of all of their tiles first is the winner, and strategic thinking helps as you block moves from your opponent. “Blokus” is simple to understand, but the game's complexity is revealed shortly after everyone begins to play. It can be addictive, even for those not normally into abstract games. (Amazon.com)
Tip of the Week: Healthy habits for a happy family
Here are some tips from MommyDocs.com on ways to incorporate a healthier lifestyle into your children's routines:
- Make a habit of having your child wash his hands after going to the bathroom, playing outside, coming home from school or daycare, sneezing and coughing.
- Schedule an appointment to receive the influenza vaccine, because flu season is right around the corner. The new recommendation is for all children between 6 months of age up to 19 years old to get the vaccine (there are a few exceptions, so talk to the doctor).
- Make a habit of eating three meals a day; this includes never skipping breakfast and eating nutritious foods.
- Avoid consuming empty calories while on the go by providing healthy snacks such as fruit and vegetables that are high in important nutrients.
- Maintain a consistent morning plan, dinnertime and bedtime. Kids do best when they know what to expect, and the entire family will find it easier to navigate through the day. (ARA)
Pet Tip: Picnics and your pooch
To help ensure an enjoyable picnic experience for all, Paula Lind of Argosy University recommends that dog owners consider several basic issues before heading out:
- Be sure your pet's vaccinations are up to date before exposure to wooded areas and other wild or domestic animals.
- "A dog must be trained at home with no distractions," says Lind. "Children running and throwing balls are big distractions that can put stress on a dog. It's impossible to teach anything when a dog is stressed.”
- It's important to take supplies with you. Lind suggests these basic items: water supply and bowl, food, leash and/or chain, appropriate treats, a toy to keep your pet occupied and "poop bags" for waste disposal.
- If your pet disrupts an event away from home, you will need to remove the dog to a safe place. What will you do? "Cars become dangerously hot in the summer months, even with the windows down. Unless you're prepared to leave early and take your pet home, you will need to arrange for the dog's safekeeping for the duration of your stay at the event," Lind says. (ARA)
GateHouse News Service