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Good Deed Monday: Bounce for Autism

Monday, April 12th, 2010

Jump2IMG_0651What’s more inviting than a big, soft bounce house, really? That was the thinking behind Bounce for Autism, an annual fundraiser for The Autism Society of America, in partnership with Pump It Up, a chain of indoor party spaces, filled with inflatable everything.

On April 22, you or your child can be a sponsored bouncer or a virtual bouncer at one of 144 Pump It Up locations throughout the country. The sensory environment at Pump it Up encourages people with autism of all ages to run, jump, laugh and play in a place where they feel comfortable and accepted. You’ll get food and drinks, rest areas, safety guidelines and medical support. Plus, you’ll be surrounded by others who care deeply about autism.

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Tags: | Categories: Doing Good, Health & Safety

Good Deed Monday: Merch Madness

Monday, March 29th, 2010

8671_1.JPGEBay’s World of Good, which is packed with verified fair trade products that have a positive impact on societies that need it, is having a fun March Madness style contest until Friday.

Visit them here and make your bracket picks for which products have the most spring appeal. The ten highest-scoring participants will each receive a $150 gift certificate to

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Tags: | Categories: Doing Good, Giveaways, Shopping & Gear

Good Deed Monday: Spread Afterschool Love With iCarly

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

Picture 1If you don’t know who Miranda Cosgrove is, your kids do. Just ask them how much they love iCarly (I say “how much” because I promise you, they already love her).

Okay, now that you’re fully filled in on Miranda’s amazing star power, you’ll want to enter Quaker Oat’s Afterschool Rocks sweepstakes for a chance to win a private musical performance by Miranda herself, to be held in your hometown.

Not only would winning make you the coolest mom or dad ever, but the sweepstakes is helping promote the Afterschool Rocks campaign—coordinated by the nonprofit Afterschool Alliance, Miranda Cosgrove, and Quaker Chewy Granola Bars—to help raise awareness of the importance of afterschool programs. Visit before April 20 to enter and to learn more about how you can help spread the word.

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Tags: | Categories: Doing Good

Good Deed Monday: Leave Your Heart in Haiti

Monday, March 15th, 2010

These tees ($12) from the uber creative, artists-run nonprofit Love in Stereo, make it easy to show your support for Haiti in style. Proceeds go to food for kids via the Son Light Children’s Home and Nutrition Center. 300-1Buy yours or learn more here.

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Tags: | Categories: Doing Good, Shopping & Gear

Good Deed Monday: Read Up to End Obesity

Monday, March 8th, 2010

51Nkq8ZQ8pL._SS500_If you’re in need of new ways to cut down your kids’ screen time and up their exercise habits, try a new book from the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation and the Alliance for a Healthier Generation.

In Be Well: Messages from Moms on Living Healthier Lives, 15 moms reveal the creative ways they’re fighting childhood obesity in their own homes and communities. For instance Ashley, a Houston mom, runs each night with her two sons while Emilia, an Austin mom, found affordable resources to get her family more active.

Download the book free here. Or buy a hard copy for just $2.99 here.

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Tags: | Categories: Doing Good, Health & Safety

Good Deed Monday: Red Cross, for Starters

Monday, March 1st, 2010

ChileEarthquakeAdmittedly, when I heard about the earthquake in Chile, I felt the same sense of uselessness I did when Haiti was first hit.

Despite instant communication tools like Skype, Twitter and Gowalla, being so physically removed from people in need becomes glaringly clear at times like this.

But after conferring with our senior health editor, Kara, I went to one of the largest humanitarian networks in the world, the American Red Cross, for guidance.

The organization has made an initial $50,000 pledge from its International Response Fund for relief operations, and the Chilean Red Cross is already providing first aid, search and rescue, and supplies.

While they’re doing what they can, we can all donate to beef up that response fund, even more so because March is Red Cross month.

And what better time to check out classes being offered at your local chapter? Learning seemingly little things like pet first aid and ways to comfort a family after a house fire might be just the thing to do in light of these major tragedies. After all the Red Cross is, “Down the street. Across the country. Around the world.”

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Good Deed Monday (The Late Edition): PLAYATHON for Haiti

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010

34FD2BB2D56FE11241D42B2C965B1242In the latest of the many, very amazing initiatives to help Haiti, Hasbro has teamed up with the Youth HandsOn Network to start a nationwide fundraising program. It’s called PLAYATHON for Haiti, and it is as cool as it sounds.

Your challenge: Set up a PLAYATHON, where kids are sponsored to play, using the instructions and templates here.

The payoff: Up until March 31, 2010, the Hasbro Children’s Fund will match the total amount raised through PLAYATHON for Haiti events in support of SOS Children’s Villages, a nonprofit organization committed to the long-term care of children who can no longer grow up with their biological families (up to a total of $500,000).

In addition to providing food, medicine and clothing to Haitian children affected by the earthquake, SOS plans to immediately set up long-term “pop-up” shelters for orphans in need. All of the funds raised during the PLAYATHON for Haiti will be allocated towards these shelters, which cost between $1,250 and $2,500.

Get playing!

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Tags: | Categories: Doing Good

Live From Toy Fair: Madame Alexander Gets a Makeover

Wednesday, February 17th, 2010

BonBon2Meet Madame Alexander’s classic Cissy doll (going by the adorable alias, Bon Bon).

When I saw her at Toy Fair I thought I took the wrong bus and ended up at New York Fashion Week by accident. Turns out she just got a major style update from inspired designer Jason Wu.

Don’t worry, the new line, featuring six unapologetically fierce outfits (one with a martini in-hand), is not a ploy to get your 3-year-old into a couture corset.

These dolls are for grown-up fashion-lovers. And yet, that frilly frock still made the kid in me rejoice.

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