Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Spring Break!

Spring break is this week for most of north Alabama.  Since she doesn't yet have her own blog (that I know of) I can let you know that Miss Emma will be spending part of her spring break with her grandmother ("Momma G") in Mississippi.

I think she's excited.  But if not, she will be as soon as she sees the bubbles and sidewalk chalk Momma G has for them to play with.  They are also planning to go see Mother Goose at the library!

This is a time of year when many families will be traveling.  Including little ones on road trips can be challenging, but often just requires a little extra preparation and, um, parental ingenuity.

And whether you're going on a vacation or plan to enjoy a little "staycation" at home, Cloud 9 has lots of toys for children to play with, indoors and out.

If you have a little garden helper around the house, check out our new Green Toys Indoor Gardening Kit.

If you do happen to be headed to the beach - this week or later this summer - don't leave home without some (or all) of our Quut beach toys:  the Ballo, the Alto, the Triplet, and the Cuppi.

Rest assured, you'll be the coolest mom (or Dad) on the block or beach when you pull these toys out of your beach bag.  (Hint:  The Cuppi has been know to be a fave of some kids for bath time, too.)  You can view the entire line of Quut beach toys on our website.

Need more suggestions?  Just click on "toys" then "outdoor toys" on our website.  We have a great selection of bathing suits, too.  And don't forget the Supergoop Sunscreen!

What is your family doing for spring break?  Do you have any tips to share for traveling with kids?

Monday, March 17, 2014

Makin' the Easter Bunny's job easy!

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Just when I though spring had finally arrived for good, I woke up this morning to 35 degrees and drizzle.  Thankfully, we did have some spring-like weather this weekend for our "Stuff the Basket" event at Cloud 9.

These were a few of our hottest sellers:

Babiators:  These "kid" sunglasses are one of the hottest items of the season.  They come in two sizes:  0-3 years and 3-7 years.  I have it on good authority that Emma will be getting a pair of these in her Easter Basket.  

Beaufort Bonnets:  These come in white, pink gingham, pink seersucker, and blue seersucker.  We did sell out on Saturday, but we will have another shipment coming in time for Easter!

Bishop Beach Towel:  You can't rock your Babiators without one of these monogrammed towels.  We still have a few of these remaining, so hurry in.  

Pete the Cat's Big Easter Adventure:  Emma will be getting the latest Pete book, too!

Lollacups:  Available in several bright colors:  bold red, good green, posh pink, brave blue, and happy orange.  

A big thank you to each and every one of you who stopped by the store Saturday for the event.  And if you weren't able to make it, I have great news:  We have decided to extend the "Stuff the Basket" discount on in-store purchases through this coming Saturday, March 22nd!

So there.  We've made it really easy for you, Easter Bunny!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

A "spring" in my step

At long last, the weather is turning a bit warmer.  The days are getting longer.  Spring is in the air!

There's so much to love about spring.  Well, everything except for this pesky time change, that is.  But technically, that falls in winter now anyway.

I'm excited for spring clothes!  When I think of spring, I think of seersucker, gingham and linen.  I look forward to dressing Emma in adorable bonnets, bubbles, and sun sets.  And monograms.  I love monograms!  So much, in fact, that I think I might do an entire post later dedicated to monograms.

Then, of course, there's Easter.

This will be Emma's second Easter.  She was only ten months last year, so this will be her first time to hunt eggs.  I'm so excited!

And are you ready for this?

We have chickens!  Not only that, but our chickens lay blue and green eggs, so we may not even have to dye any this year!  Actually, we probably will anyway.  Dying eggs for Easter is a memorable childhood experience for me that I want to pass on and share with Emma.  Plus, I think we need a few pink eggs for her, and none of our chickens can do pink, as far as I know. 

We have lots going on for spring at Cloud 9.  Like us on Facebook, and follow us on Instagram and Pinterest for contests, cute outfits, special events and more!  I also heard through the grapevine that the Easter Bunny might  be paying a visit to our store!  Keep watching for details.

What are some of your favorite things about spring?

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Read Across America Day

Reading is a wonderful thing.  How else can you visit faraway places without ever leaving your bed?

Yesterday (March 3rd) was Read Across America Day, an initiative created by the National Education Association (NEA).  It's observed on the school day which falls nearest to March 2nd, which happens to be the birthday of Dr. Seuss.  No coincidence.  

What started as a one-day event, Read Across America has grown into a nationwide program promoting reading year after year.  This year, over 45 million, students, teachers, parents, and fans of reading in general celebrated the event.  

The goal of the NEA's Read Across America program is to help children know that reading is important and that reading is fun!  Oh yeah, and you're never to old - or to young - to pick up a book and read to a child.  AND a child is never to young to be read to.

We started with Emma when she was just a baby, and continue to read to her every night.  Either Mommy or Daddy crawl into bed with her and read a book before turning the lights off and tucking her in.  We plan to continue to read to Emma, and will start reading to Sage as soon as he is here.

In addition to simply being something we enjoy doing with Emma, I know that reading has many benefits.  According to the NEA, students who do more reading at home generally have higher math scores than others.  Not to mention scoring higher in reading proficiency!

Unfortunately, statistics show that as kids get older, they don't read for fun as often.  The NEA suggests making reading fun, so that story time is something that you and your child look forward to.

Emma is getting her first Pete the Cat book (a Cloud 9 fan favorite character, for sure) in her Easter Basket this year - Pete the Cat:  Big Easter Adventure.  She already loves our finger puppet books and I'm sure she is going to be a big Pete fan, too!

We have a great selection of books for children at Cloud 9 - both in-store and online.  So whether you read from a Nook, or from an actual book, stories about crooks, or books to help you cook... (OK, I'll stop now).

What are your child's favorite books?  What are some of your favorite books when you were a kid?