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Best Christmas presents for kids: Educational toys, holiday gifts for preschool children

Do you vow every holiday season, not to go overboard shopping for Christmas presents for the children? It's easy to over-indulge, but if you're going to, at least look for bargains. Here's how to get a lot of bang in Christmas gifts, for you holiday shopping buck--buy educational toys and gifts. Here are low-cost, highly educational toys and learning Christmas presents for preschool age children.   Best Christmas presents for kids: Educational toys, holiday gifts for children | Examiner.com

SeaWorld ends orca whale shows over 'Blackfish' Tilikum animal cruelty protests | Examiner.com

In startling news, SeaWorld will end orca whale shows at its San Diego theme park. The Guardian reported on Nov. 9, that the decision came in the wake of animal cruelty protests over Tilikum and other killer whales featured in the 2013 "Blackfish" film. Dwindling admissions and sinking profit margins have left SeaWorld floundering. SeaWorld announced that the iconic killer whale shows will be phased out by 2017 and replaced by a "new orca experience" focused on natural environment of whales. 2016 will be the last year guests will see performing killer whales at San Diego SeaWorld amusement park. But ending the orca whale shows is only a ripple in the pond. SeaWorld is completely restructuring the entire venue.SeaWorld ends orca whale shows over 'Blackfish' Tilikum animal cruelty protests | Examiner.com

 

IHOP posted body shaming tweets: IHOP pulls still more crude breast, penis shaming tweets | Examiner.com

Pancake purveyor IHOP tried to be IHIP but ended up being IFLOP. The famous breakfast chain IHOP posted body shaming tweets at men and women, reported the Daily Meal on MSN, Oct. 20. One of the tweets showed poked fun at small-chested women. It compared a stack pancakes to breasts with the quip "flat but has GREAT personality." Actually what fell flat was IHOP's body shaming joke. Then IHOP took tweet pot shots at men showing a pile of little cocktail wiener sausages with the facepalm comment "small but knows how to use it" (permission to cringe!)IHOP posted body shaming tweets: IHOP pulls crude breast, penis shaming tweets | Examiner.com

 

President Obama demands stricter gun control laws in Oregon shooting at Umpqua Community College

A school shooting left 10 dead and 7 wounded at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon, reported the Oregonian on Oct. 1. Addressing the nation on this horrific mass slaying, President Obama called for tighter gun regulations. In fact, he didn't just ask, Obama demanded stricter gun control laws after the Oregon college shooting, The Commander-in-Chief was clearly pained and angered at having to speak on yet another mass slaying. Right wing gun rights advocates called the president's words objectionable and accused him of using a tragedy to further political agenda.  President Obama demands stricter gun control laws in Oregon shooting at Umpqua 

Free printable September 11 lesson plans, 9/11 social studies printables

As Britain commemorates Guy Fawkes Day on November 5, Americans "remember, remember the 11th of September." On the 14th anniversary of the September 11 attacks, how can we commemorate in a proactive way? A nonprofit called My Good Deed, suggests making it a National Day of Service and Remembrance reports the International Business Times. But how do you teach children why September 11 is so important? How do you explain what happened to the World Trade Center, Flight 93 and Pentagon? How can you help them understand war, violence and terrorism? Here are free printable September 11 lesson plans to help.  Free printable September 11 lesson plans, 9/11 social studies printables - Grand Rapids Holidays | Examiner.com

Republicans Todd Courser, Cindy Gamrat hid affair behind gay hookup they eschew

Two Michigan Republican Tea Party members may win the title for biggest hypocrites. Michigan representatives Todd Courser and Cindy Gamrat hid their extramarital affair behind the gay hookup Courser supposedly had with a male prostitute, reported the Grand Haven Tribune on August 19. The staunch conservatives both eschew LGBT issues and have pushed for Bible-based values--gays not included--in Michigan law. So they pontificate against homosexuality, yet Courser used it to his own ends when he needs it. Facepalm! Both representatives want to see extremist rightist Christian morality at the forefront of political agenda all the while carrying on a relationship that is 50 shades of immoral in Christian teaching, and actually kinda immoral in most all ideologies! Double facepalm!! Republicans Todd Courser, Cindy Gamrat hid affair as the gay hookup they eschew

 

Dellarontay Readus gets in to all Ivy Leagues, needs college money to bury mom

You can't listen to Dellarontay Readus talk about his mother's death without crying. WREG told the story of the teen who got in to all 8 ivy league colleges who now needs his college money to bury his mom, on August 12. Actually WREG has been following Readus's star ascendant and he's touched a lot of people. Readus's mother Lynn Readus, who struggled with heart and stomach problems, got to see her boy graduate. She was able to witness him get a 31 on his college placement exams. But she won't get to see her boy go to Stanford, the school he selected after offers from Princeton, Yale, Harvard and others.Dellarontay Readus gets in to all Ivy Leagues, needs college money to bury mom - Grand Rapids News | Examiner.com

 

Drone drops drugs in prison yard, eggs on jailbird fight in Ohio - Grand Rapids News | Examiner.com

 You can't make this stuff up. A drone drops drugs in a prison yard and said package eggs on a jailbird fight in Ohio, reports the Associated Press on August 4. Inmates were outside taking in a little exercise at Mansfield Correctional Institution (MANCI) when a trove of narcotics rained from the sky. The parcel contained a quarter bag of heroin, 2 ounces of pot and 5 ounces of tobacco. Drone drops drugs in prison yard, eggs on jailbird fight in Ohio - Grand Rapids News | Examiner.com

Free printable Memorial Day activities: Patriotic Remembrance Day printables

Memorial Day, celebrated the last Monday in May, doesn't just kick off summer holidays. Also called Remembrance Day, the holiday honors veterans and those lost in U.S. wars. It's also referred to as Decoration Day, when family commemorates loved ones lost by putting flowers on graves. Teachers and homeschool parents, here are free printable lesson plans, worksheets, crafts and games to teach kids about this national holiday.Free printable Memorial Day activities: Patriotic Remembrance Day printables - Grand Rapids Holidays | Examiner.com

 

Free printable earth science worksheets, activities for April Earth Month

There are many reasons to celebrate April. April bids farewell to winter and ushers in spring. Easter and Earth Month are celebrated in April. April 22 is the official Earth Day and Arbor Day on April 24.. Here are environmental science worksheets and lesson plans to explore this "green" month of April.  Free printable earth science worksheets, activities for April Earth Month

Yom HaShoah Holocaust Remembrance Day, how Jews and non-Jews can honor day

January 27 is International Holocaust Remembrance Day and Yom HaShoah is Holocaust Memorial day in April, says the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. On this day, Allied forces in WWII liberated the Jewish concentration camps at Auschwitz and Birkenau. As the world mourns, it's time also for ora et labora--prayer and work--to end antisemitism, bigotry, discrimination and persecution. How? By looking to children, the hope for the future.  International Holocaust Remembrance Day, how Jews and non-Jews can honor dead

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Freelance writer, Top 100 Yahoo! Voices, Yahoo! News, Shine, Michigan, Detroit), blogger, teacher, mom of 4, happily married 25 years. Graduated GVSU 1986, psychology/general education and special education. continuing ed up to present. Certified MI teacher. Writing Michigan history mystery, children's Gothic fantasy. Areas of expertise: education, relationships, mental health, nutrition, history, world cultures. Passions: faith, Catholic church, sustainable living, interfaith initiatives, living simply that others might simply live. Working on MA in EI education.