Our Kids December 2019

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Our Kids Magazine | December 2019

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The Science of Giving and How It Can Help Your Kids By Sandi Schwartz

Want to really make your kids happy? Teach them the importance of giving to others. Contrary to common belief that kids need and want more “stuff ” to be happy, science tells us that it is the act of giving to others that actually boosts happiness and can even improve health and other areas of their lives.

Children Were Born To Give Believe it or not, children enter this world with a natural instinct to be compassionate to others. Scientists at the Max Planck Institute discovered that infants help others even though they are too young to have learned about being kind and polite. The children take action because of their own motivation, and not because they expect a reward. Actually, humans have evolved over time to be compassionate, and our brains are now wired to respond to those who are suffering. Kindness has become a “survival of the fittest” trait, as Charles Darwin even advised that “communities which included the greatest number of the most sympathetic members would flourish best, and rear the greatest number of offspring.” In other words, the better we get along and help each other out, the more successful our society will be. Do children continue to show compassion as they 6

Our Kids Magazine | December 2019

grow? A breakthrough study by psychologists at the University of British Columbia determined that young children are happier to give than to receive. Toddlers who were asked to give away their own treats expressed greater happiness when they shared with others. The researchers interpreted the results of this study to mean that anytime people participate in pro-social behavior, such as volunteering and giving charitable donations, we experience an increase in happiness. Children have the foundation to be kind, but it’s our job as parents to continue to nurture this part of them as they grow. If we neglect to do so, negative life experiences can unfortunately tear down this beautiful instinct.

How Giving Transforms Our Kids Numerous studies have uncovered several ways that giving enhances our children’s lives. Boosts Happiness When we make others happy by giving a gift or our support, we experience a physiological change called a helper’s high. It is a euphoric physical sensation resulting from our brain releasing chemicals called endorphins. According to Psychology Today, the helper’s high is a literal “high,” similar to a drug-induced sensation. It LIKE US @ facebook.com/OurKidsMagazineSA

GETTING IN ON THE GIVING makes us feel good naturally, giving us a rush that leaves us elated and excited. This positive energy is similar to how we feel after exercising.

Improves Health Research shows that giving leads to better health. In his book Why Good Things Happen to Good People, Stephen Post, a professor of preventative medicine at Stony Brook University, explains that giving to others has been shown to increase health benefits in people with chronic illness. In addition, a 1999 study led by Doug Oman of the University of California, Berkeley suggests that giving may improve physical health because it helps reduce stress. Finally, a 2006 joint study by Johns Hopkins University and the University of Tennessee indicated that people who helped others had lower blood pressure than participants who did not. Promotes Social Connection Several studies suggest that when we give, our generosity is ultimately rewarded by others. These positive actions promote a sense of trust and cooperation that strengthens our relationships. Moreover, we feel a bond towards those who we help. All of this is important because having positive social interactions is central to good mental and physical health.

Encourages an Attitude of Gratitude When we give to those in need, we feel a sense of gratitude because it puts things in perspective. Volunteer work is a great opportunity for our children to appreciate what they have and gives them a glimpse of the broader world. Meanwhile, gratitude is another very important ingredient for happiness and good health. Gives Children the Opportunity to Inspire Others Those who are on the receiving end of a good deed typically want to pass along that positive feeling and help others. Researcher James Fowler at the University of California, San Diego found that just one act of kindness can inspire several more acts of kindness by others. In this case, children have the opportunity to be mentor to others, inspiring a chain of kindness and compassion. Best Ways To Teach Children About Giving Teaching our children how to pay it forward is easier than you may think. There are endless opportunities to volunteer as a family and to give our children meaningful experiences that will enhance both their lives and the individuals they help. Here are some tips on how to incorporate giving into your children’s lives. Discuss how they can help. Find a few minutes during

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GETTING IN ON THE GIVING your day to ask your children who they would like to help. Provide some options like babies, animals, people without homes, children who do not have families, students who need books, or the elderly. Talk about the different types of projects you can do to help those in need. For some inspiration, read books about giving and kindness to your children. Talk about the importance of charitable giving. If you choose to start a monetary collection for charity, consider creating or buying giving boxes for each child. Ask them to set goals about how much they would like to give throughout the year and which organizations they would like to donate to. Check in weekly or monthly throughout the year to see how close they are to reaching their goal. Help your children discover their passion. Our passion should drive how we give because when we are excited about a project, we can put all of our heart and soul into it. Also, when we care about what we are working on, we will get more out of it and feel happier. Help your children identify their talents, skills, and interests that they can put to good use. Give as a group. Volunteering during a community service event with others accentuates the happiness boost because you are also building social connections. Choose projects close to home. Giving to a place locally where you can actually see and experience the results is most effective. Studies have also found that we are happiest

when we give to a charity through a friend, relative, or social connection rather than simply making an anonymous donation to a cause half way around the world. Find ways to volunteer as a family. By volunteering as a family, you make giving a priority and build it into your children’s daily routine. There are so many ways that you can give together, and if you don’t find something out there that you love, create it yourself. You can find volunteer opportunities for your family by checking your local government website; searching for local charities in your area; asking friends and neighbors; or visiting sites like Idealist, VolunteerMatch, and JustServe. There is certainly no shortage of ways to help others. The next time you feel like your child’s playroom or bedroom closet is going to explode, ask them to fill a bag with items to give to kids who could really use them. By providing our children with opportunities to give, they will be happier and healthier and have the power to pass along that goodness to so many people. Sandi Schwartz is a freelance writer/blogger and mother of two. She has written extensively about parenting, wellness, and environmental issues. You can find her at www.happysciencemom.com and www.sandischwartz.com. Get her free course on raising happy, balanced kids at bit.ly/2i53TDV.

Give a Hand, Volunteer or Donate Volunteer opportunities at The Children’s Shelter are to generate healthy attachments and connections for children and youth who are survivors of maltreatment. The Children’s Shelter Trauma-Informed Care approaches build a path of resiliency for children and youth, by providing volunteers, who are ages 18 and older an opportunity to facilitate age appropriate activities to stimulate social and emotional connections, and to ensure the enrichment of children and youth is achieved through demonstrated volunteer activities. For young leaders who are younger than 18 years of age, don’t be discouraged, we have something for you. Young people are natural servant leaders, and encourage community engagement activities that demonstrate the mission to restore innocence and strengthen families. Young leaders engage with their respected communities, that include their neighborhoods, schools, place of worship, families, and friends to facilitate apparel drives, book drives, diapers and formula drives; donation drives for infants, toddlers, small children, and teenagers; and even donation drives that can provide experiences for our children and teenagers, such as going out to eat and participating in age appropriate activities. Age should never be a barrier to serving your community. Natural leadership is within us, and young leaders are masters in their own way, and have shown, how they display humanity, and to serve others. Activities can be weekly, monthly, or once a year. For information about The Children’s Shelter, including volunteer activities, special events, and most needed items, please visit childrensshelter.org or call 210-212-2500. 8

Our Kids Magazine | December 2019

During the 86th Texas Legislative Session, Representative Matt Krause, House District 93, authored House Bill 234-“relating to the regulation of the sale of lemonade or other beverages by children.” HB 234 was signed into law by Governor Greg Abbott, and went into effect on September 1, 2019. Providing children and young people an opportunity to continue their efforts to pop-up lemonade stands across communities to quench the thirst of many, and potentially help those in their communities. LIKE US @ facebook.com/OurKidsMagazineSA

GETTING IN ON THE GIVING Any Baby Can www.AnyBabyCanSA.org 210-227-0170

The Children’s Association for Maximum Potential (CAMP) www.campcamp.org 210-671-5411

The Arc of San Antonio www.Arc-SA.org • 210-490-4300

The Children’s Bereavement Center of South Texas www.CBCST.org • 210-736-4847

Assistance League of San Antonio www.assistanceleague.org 210-732-1200

ChildSafe www.ChildSafe-sa.org 210-675-9000

Avance www.avancesa.org 210-220-1788 ext. 252

The Elf Louise Christmas Project www.Elf Louise.org 210-224-1843

Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Texas www.BigMentor.org 210-225-6322

Family Service Association www.Family-Service.org 210-299-2400

Boysville www.BoysvilleTexas.org 210-659-1901

Hill Country Daily Bread Ministries www.HillCountryDailyBread.com 830-755-5200

Guardian House https://guardianhouse.org 210-733-3349

Inner City Development www.InnerCityDevelopment.org 210-224-7239

Mission Road Ministries www.MissionRoadMinistries.org 210-924-9265 Morgan’s Wonderland www.MorgansWonderland.com 210-495-5888 Ronald McDonald House www.RMHCSanAntonio.org 210-614-2554 Roy Maas’ Youth Alternatives www.RMYA.org • 210-340-8077 The Salvation Army - Angel Tree www.SalvationArmySATX.org 210-352-2000 San Antonio Food Bank www.SAFoodBank.org 210-337-3663 SA Pets Alive www.sanantoniopetsalive.org 210-370-7612 San Antonio Youth Literacy www.SAYL.org • 210-299-1533

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By Christa Melnyk Hines

12 Tips to Tame the Holiday Circus

Are holiday traditions, parties, volunteer commitments and shopping turning you into a frenzied ringmaster of a runaway circus train? For your sanity and for your health, put the brakes on the holiday rush. Here’s how.


Make a “Not-to-Do” List. Consciously leave a few activities off the program this year. Ellie Griffin, a feminine vitality coach, says this is one of her favorite ways to reduce holiday stress. “I love having my clients do this exercise because it makes them realize how much of what they do doesn’t have an effect on the big picture of their lives,” she says.


End a tradition. Let go of rituals that are more work than fun or are no longer meaningful. Attempting to turn the holiday season into the greatest show on earth, could put your health at risk. According to the American Psychological Association, chronic stress can weaken your immune system making it harder to recover from illness and can cause heart disease, obesity and depression.


Catch your zzzs. You perform better when you’re well-rested. Strive for seven to eight hours of sleep, which can help you cope better with stress. “Poor sleep habits keep you jittery, irritable and feeling like you’re just dragging yourself around,” says Rosalie Moscoe, author 10

Our Kids Magazine | December 2019

of Frazzled, Hurried Woman! Your Stress Relief Guide to Thriving...Not Merely Surviving.


Choreograph the chaos. Organize your shopping trips. Ask for help from your significant other. When possible, buy gifts whenever you’re already out running errands. Make shipping presents a breeze by purchasing some online. After pounding the pavement, reward yourself with dinner out, pizza delivery, or a glass of wine by a cozy fire.


Clown around. During the holiday rush try not to schedule every free moment. “By pursuing pleasure in her life, a woman can not only enjoy a more fulfilling life, but in the process increase production of oxytocin, a hormone crucial to lowering stress hormones,” Griffin says. Go through your calendar and block out 15 to 30 minutes each day to do something just for your personal enjoyment, like a manicure, lunch with a friend, yoga, a nap, or reading a book.


Juggle less. Planning, cooking, cleaning and entertaining can test even the most talented acrobat. Host a light-hearted appetizer party instead of a serious dinner soiree. Choose menu items that can be prepared ahead of time or have the event catered to make it easier for you to enjoy the festivities along with your guests. LIKE US @ facebook.com/OurKidsMagazineSA





Rely on your safety net. “Ask for help! Get your family to help with cleaning up at home. Or, if you can, hire a cleaning person,” Moscoe says. “Take a break, be kind to yourself. There will always be something to finish-that’s life!”For casual parties, prepare the main dish and ask your friends if they can bring side items or desserts. Revel in the moment. Duck out of the buzzing fluorescent lights and long lines.Take an evening stroll to breathe in the cool December air and admire the holiday lights illuminating the streets. Allow the movement to calm your mind without further stressing your body.


Feed yourself right. Hunger and exhaustion can bring out the tiger in anyone. Eat wholesome, good mood foods with protein for energy. “Don’t bring extra cookies or chocolate into the house in advance of the holidays,” Moscoe says. “This will make you cranky, tired and cause fluctuations in blood sugar.”


Plan for surprises. Keep tricks up your sleeve for managing those last-minute gift exchanges. While running errands, purchase small gifts that you can stash. And, go ahead and store those extra cookies in the freezer for drop-in visitors.

Simplify decor. If holiday decor makes you sweat, swap time-consuming and expensive lights and ornaments for homemade decorations. Try making luminaries with your kids. Draw a star or tree on a lunchsize paper bag. Punch holes into the design and fill the bag with sand. Place battery-charged tea lights inside the bags and line them up on your porch or driveway. Focus on the magic. Carefully consider what makes the holidays special for you and your family. Ask your kids, too. Their answers may surprise you. Perhaps they’d like to try building gingerbread houses this year or want to spend a toasty evening in their pajamas drinking hot chocolate and watching seasonal movies. Most of all, resolve to bring your holidays from over the big top to just right for you. Even one small change can make all the difference between anxiously counting the days until the show is over to living in the moment while celebrating more peace and joy with your family this season. Christa Melnyk Hines is an internationally published freelance writer. Her circus includes her strongman husband, two children who love to clown around and one quirky, but cute mutt.

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Bring the Family Closer: Winter Resolutions that Inspire Togetherness

By Pam Molnar

Winter is a quiet time for reflection. As the embers of holiday cheer fade, it allows us to see the things that need to be fixed. No, I am not referring to that cabinet door in the kitchen or the leaky faucet in the bathroom. According to a recent survey, the average family spends only 34 minutes together on weekdays. If you are surprised to find your own family fits into that statistic, there is no need to panic. Like fresh fallen snow, winter gives us a chance at new beginnings. Take advantage of winter’s slower pace to reconnect with each other. If need some inspiration, take a look at these 12 ideas.


Volunteer together – Working together for a cause makes a family closer. Whether you have been touched by a foundation’s work or just want to make a difference, it is nice way to spend time together as a family. Try running a family friendly 5K or support your local Ronald McDonald house by preparing a meal.


Engage in creativity together – Gather around the kitchen table and work on coloring pages. Build houses out of Legos or take a painting class together. 12

Our Kids Magazine | December 2019

Expressing yourself through art not only helps to relieve stress, but it’s a fun activity that you can do over and over.


Go outside – No matter what the weather, find time to connect with the family outdoors. On sunny days, you can go for a bike ride or play soccer in the backyard. If you live near snow, build a snowman. If it’s raining, grab your umbrella and take a walk. Taking in the fresh air will clear your mind of everyday distractions and make room for new memories.


Several cooks in the kitchen – Think back to the holidays when everyone was working together to prepare a meal you would all enjoy. Cooking dinner together helps the picky eaters to see what ingredients go into the meal and gives the normal cook a few extra hands.


Unplug after 5:00 – Work emails, social media and random texts interrupt family time unnecessarily. With the exception of online homework or a FaceTime call with Grandma, there is no reason that a family has to spend the evening staring into their phones. Make it a habit to unplug before dinner and make your only communication be face to face. LIKE US @ facebook.com/OurKidsMagazineSA


Practice random acts of kindness – Doing a kindness to someone, especially someone not expecting it, will make both the giver and receiver feel good. Help the people in your house by doing a chore without being asked, handing over the TV remote to someone else or giving up the best seat in the car.


Date nights – While this may not sound like a family event, it is equally important for families to have one on one time with each of its members. This is true for the adults in the family as well as Mom and Me type dates with each child. Be sure to double the family fun by planning a special evening at home for those staying behind.


Slow down – There is something to be said about the families of yesteryear who sat around the radio and listened to the story. They had to use their own imagination to visualize the characters. Try to recreate the same impact by listening to a book on CD and putting together a puzzle together while you listen.


Spark conversation at dinner – Go beyond “How was your day?” to ask and answer thought provoking questions like “What features do you think will be on cars in ten years?” You can also play a game asking everyone how well they know each other. Ask the family if they know the name of Joey’s tutor or what Dad’s job title is.


You plan it night – Once a week, one person will plan the way the family will spend the night together. They will choose the menu and an activity (all within a set budget, of course). Even elementary aged students can make a shopping list from a recipe and look online for movie times.


Set a goal and work on it together – Winter resolutions often include changing a bad habit. Let everyone set their goal – lose 10 lbs, go to the gym 3 times a week, bring my math grade up – and once a week at dinner check in to see how everyone is doing. Share the ups and downs of your progress and lean on your family for support or suggestions.


Visit with the extended family – Continue to grow the family ties long after the holidays are over. Plan outings with the cousins, a couple’s dinner with the aunts and uncles or a regular game night with the siblings. If you live far apart, try a Friday night Face Time or play video games together over WIFI connection. Pam Molnar is a freelance writer and mother of three. Their family likes to reconnect over home cooked meals and board games. Follow her on Pam’s Party Printables on Etsy December 2019 | OurKidsMagazine.com



Star Of The Season The Prepared Parent’s Guide To Baby’s First Holidays By Christina Katz

I am sure you want your holidays to be memorable and not overwhelming, and this can feel like a delicate balance baby’s first year. To keep things festive rather than frantic, put your family’s needs first and then consider extended family’s expectations. Here’s how to share your new blessing generously yet judiciously, so everyone can enjoy this special time of year - including baby.


glee. Rather than a long annual Christmas letter, perhaps a card with baby’s photo is enough. Instead of creating a huge cookie plate, how about suggesting a cookie swap with your mom group? Perhaps decline a few holiday party invitations and choose the most baby-friendly ones. Now that baby is the center of your family, don’t feel pressured to do everything you have always done.

Re-prioritize expectations. Traditions loom large during the holidays but you don’t have to celebrate every season the same way. During the first year with baby, you will encounter new limits on your time and energy that you may not have imagined. Consider your family’s priorities before you plan. Be honest with yourself and your spouse about what you want baby’s first holidays to feel like. And then make that dream a reality by communicating what works for you with extended family.

Research stages. Whether you decide to travel cross-country or stay home and nest, consider baby’s age and temperament. Do your homework online and collect as much information as you can about the challenges associated with baby’s upcoming stages of development. No matter what your circumstances, planning a joyful holiday starts with accepting the things you cannot change - like your baby’s needs at a particular age. If you manage your expectations, you can relax your way through the holidays, instead of stressing your way though them.

Refresh routines. The holidays are always a cause for celebration but when you’ve got a baby in tow, the season shifts into a slower gear. As a parent, you may wish to give up some traditional tasks that you would normally tackle with

Request help. The holidays are a great time to make a gift wish list and ask for support from loved ones. Clear out the baby items you no longer use. Then chat with mom friends to find out what items were helpful to them. Share your gift

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list with family in whatever way feels most appropriate. Don’t be surprised if you get more than enough support over the holidays simply because you asked for it.

Retreat often. Your baby does not care that it’s time for the extended family feast. So expect interruptions and have an exit plan in mind if unexpected meltdowns occur. When baby is upset, you might have the impulse to apologize. But put yourself in baby’s booties. A cross-country trip, a strange house, people poking and prodding non-stop... wouldn’t all of this make you feel cranky? Tantrums will pass more quickly if you stay in tune with baby and filter out expectations of everyone else. Remember that adults are perfectly capable of managing their own moods. Simplify traditions. Keep traditions as simple as possible this year. Sitting in a dim room gazing at the twinkly lights is the kind of new tradition you can eagerly embrace. Here are few other simple ideas. Read a holiday book aloud before bedtime. Take your time getting out of bed in the morning. Take after-lunch naps. Babyhood is fleeting. Slow down and squeeze all the sacredness you can out of this special season. Having baby at the center of your holidays will only make each moment more special.

Stay detached. Aunt Franny may have strong opinions about child rearing and Uncle Peter may be known for low tolerance of the pitter-patter of little feet. But you are the parent now. Take care of yourself first, then your child, and then your immediate family. Stick to this plan even when you are with extended family. If relatives disagree with your child-raising philosophies, take a bemused but detached stance. Families are usually more diverse than we remember, especially when it comes to opinions. Allow others their points of view, while staying loyal to your parenting instincts. Capture joy. A lot of energy goes into posed photos during the holiday season, but don’t forget to take advantage of candid photo opportunities with baby. Your little one will never be the star of the show quite like this again. Those first moments when friends and family meet baby will elicit grins and glee. When baby is happy, relaxed and smiling, get your camera out and click away. Photos of loved ones with baby make convenient thank you notes you can send over email after you return home. Christina Katz remembers the exhausted glory of being a new parent as a time when getting through the day was a triumph, never mind traveling across the country at the same time.

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Holiday Gift Ideas Toys

Dance Moves Moxy

by Hasbro $39.99, Dance Moves Moxy has over 50 phrases and sounds, including snippets of the signature opening song “Couldn’t be Better” from the UglyDolls movie. Press her heart to get the party started with sweet dance moves and upbeat songs. Available on Amazon.

Drop Dot Love Em’s by Kess. $9.99, These collect-

My Little Farm

by SmartFelt Toys An award-winning, interactive, multi-sensory educational toy that builds early language skills and vocabulary. An interactive toy has eight colorful panels that are fully reversable—a red barn exterior can be reversed to reveal a barn interior and colorful outdoor farm setting. Comes with 32 soft and stick-able felt cut-outs that match outlines in the 8 rooms. As children are placing the felt pieces in each room, they are also discovering early language concepts, quantity, colors, shapes and sizes. It is also endorsed by the Center for Autism Related Disorders and Autism Live. www.smartfelttoys.com.

ible and playful characters made with proprietary Drop Dot material and slow-rising foam that combine to allow for maximum sensory play. Collectible characters include Unicorns, Turtles, Pineapples and more. www.kess.co

Mickey’s Snuggle Time by Wonder Forge $24.99, Snuggle up for a calming game that’s perfect for bedtime, naptime, or any quiet time. With Mickey’s Snuggle Time, players help Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, and friends get the farm animals across the soft game board into the barn before the sun goes down. www.amazon.com

Alter Nation Action Figures - Sabotage, El Ray adn Daart by Panda Mony Toy Store

$21.99-24.99, Sabotage is the only active member of ReVAMP, a decommissioned government cyber-soldier program. Sabotage includes the following: Key Features include a Fully poseable with 18 points of articulation, “Cybernetic Overdrive” light and Sounds and Springloaded Cyber Punch. For more product information please visit Panda Mony. https://pandamony.toys/


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Toys & Games

Drop Dots by Kess

$8.99, Drop Dots are Kess’ bestselling bounce balls with a spiky texture that gives them an awesome unique feel while increasing performance in both catchability and grip. www.kess.co

Ultra Light-Up Ice Hoop

by Kess $19.99, Ultra Light-Up Ice Hoop boast patented V-Grip technology to allow for better grip while hooping and are crafted for performance and style with light-up technology that provides colorful play with enhanced visual effects. https://www.kess.co


$17.49, Animoodles are soft, fully magnetic, and lovable building toys that provide endless fun and enable kids to see themselves as creative makers. Within each animal is a unique element of surprise – neodymium rare earth magnets – designed to provide mix-and-match fun for young animal lovers. These magnets make all Animoodles’ parts fully interchangeable and rotatable, so kids can make their own cuddly creations by combining Iris Unicorn, Odin Dragon, Jada Panda, Hazel Sloth, Brady Lion and more. www.TheAnimoodles.com

King of the Ring Game by YULU

Pulp Heroes by Far Out Toys

$$5.99-$9.99, Kids’ and collectors’ favorite characters will spring into action with the coolest new affordable collectible -- Pulp Heroes from Far Out Toys! The flat, spring-loaded popular characters literally snap out of the story into a 3-D form when ejected from their colorful, comic book-themed protective sleeves. The Pulp Heroes line will debut with some of the most popular Marvel characters such as Spiderman, Ironman and including beloved Star Wars characters. www.farouttoysinc.com

King of the Ring - This fast-paced, sumowrestler -themed action game challenges players to ‘launch’ their characters up into the ring, knock others out of their way, all in a quest to reach the middle of the ring and win.


Super soft, cuddle buddies available in different sizes plus Sequin styles, Hooded Blankets, Slipperz and more. https:// moosh-moosh.com/

Foodie Surprise Food Cart

by Redwood Ventures Adorable food-themed cart playsets filled with all the supplies kids need to create magical food recipes that they can display — and of course eat. Each mystery food cart, in cool themes like Sushi, features multiple sweet ‘unboxing’ reveals.

PLAYMOBIL Mars Space Station

by Playmobil Part of a new line of Mars-inspired playsets, an imaginative gateway for young kids to learn about the benefits of learning about STEM. Amazingly detailed with intricate accessories and thoughtful PLAYMOBIL design. With interactive light and sound, and two astronauts — a male and a female. December 2019 | OurKidsMagazine.com



Toys & Games Disney Villainous Game

by Ravensburger $39.95, Take on the role of a Disney Villain and strive to achieve your own devious objective. Discover your unique abilities while dealing twists of fate to your opponents. This game introduces Evil Queen, from Snow White, Dr. Facilier from The Princess and the Frog, and Hades, from Hercules. Wicked to the Core can be played as a standalone game or you can mix with other Villains from the original Disney Villainous game. www.ravensburger.us

Dragon Snacks Game

by Goliath. This playful baby dragon has greedily snacked on all of the treasure. Wave your hand to magically reveal the treasure in his belly, and get a colorful clue from his glowing nose horn. Remember where the matching-colored treasure is, and then reach inside the dragon’s mouth to carefully snatch it from his belly. Look out - if the dragon roars, you can’t take the treasure. Be the first to successfully collect 3 treasures to win. This easy to learn magical game is quick to play and helps with color recognition and memory skills.

Crawl About Bee

by Learning Journey International LLC Crawl About Bee will encourages your little one to crawl as it moves across the floor and features a bright, babyfriendly design with three fun melodies. The classic nursery rhymes include Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star, Row, Row, Row Your Boat, and the ItsyBitsy Spider. Tap the cute button nose to wake the bee and then simply press its back to watch it go! This little bumblebee is safe and excellent for developing gross motor skills, and awesome for both boys and girls ages 6 months and up.

ZAX Bring the trend of

ax-throwing home with this one-of-its-kind soft foam ax! Play indoors or out; Zax sticks on just about any surface you can wack it at, thanks to its lever design with foam suction cups. https://zing.toys/zax

Oh My Giggles Pinkie Pie by My Little

Boxy Girls Ready, Set, Unbox! Game by Boxy Studio

$16.99. Get ready to Unbox the fun with Boxy Girls. Help the Boxy Girls rock the runway for their Spring Fashion Show. Be the first player to collect 4 fab items from the shipping boxes to complete your Boxy Girl’s look, and walk the runway to win! For extra fashion fun, flip the game board over to model your own Boxy Girl’s stylish trends on the runway. Includes 4 exclusive fashion surprises to add some flair to your wear.

BoomTrix Showdown by Goliath

$49.99, Set up a wild course of launchers, trampolines and obstacles to bounce the metal balls all the way to the goal. Boomtrix improves fine motor skills, planning skills, and imagination as kids create their own path – the possibilities are endless. The Showdown set is the ultimate assortment of fun, including a giant ramp tower that can release up to 15 balls at once, 6 trampolines, 4 trampoline curves, a booster, a stunt ring, a firework goal and 12 metal balls.


Our Kids Magazine | December 2019

Pony. $24.99, Hear Pinkie Pie laugh with this ticklish figure that’s fun and silly like her character in entertainment. When kids tickle Oh My Giggles Pinkie Pie toy, she starts to giggle, wiggle, and laugh.

Googly Eyes Showdown by

Goliath It’s the epic battle that challenges your vision and will leave you googling for more. Teams of players put on the zany, visiondistorting glasses and start to draw while your team tries to guess what you’re drawing. The glasses come with six sets of lenses that range from mild changes to mind-blowing fun, so no one can see (or draw) straight. LIKE US @ facebook.com/OurKidsMagazineSA


Bangle & Babe

Our Holiday Kit is inspired by the cheerful characters of Christmas. Screen printed, post recycled cotton rag paper, with rich tones of blues, reds, greens, whites, brown, pink, gold and silver to create 3 unique Origami models. You will have materials to create Santa, Angel with a Tree and Reindeer. https://heartforwildlife.com/

Rainbow Tail Surprise

$17.99, A great gift or stocking stuffer, Bangle & Babe is a fun and functional gift. This bracelet key ring is designed to easily slip onto your wrist, while still being flexible enough to fit in your pocket or purse. Available in a variety of fun, trendy and bright colors, as well as a modern bamboo design. www.bangleandbabe.com

Stomp Rocket

Rainbow Tail Surprise pack includes 3-in. figures of the Mane 6 ponies with entertainment-inspired designs, including molded manes and tails and signature character cutie marks. Also use water to reveal beautiful colors on the Twilight Sparkle figure’s wings. Fans of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic and My Little Pony: The Movie can collect some of their favorite characters with a unique, entertainmentinspired design! For ages 3 and up.

A must-have toy to get kids moving this holiday season. This is more than just a toy, Stomp Rocket, helps develop STEM principles while letting imaginations fly and helps burn off your kiddos’ excess energy. Stomp Rocket is 100% kid-powered and easy for kids to set up with no batteries required!

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December 2019 | OurKidsMagazine.com



Toys, Books & etc. Santa’s Dog

Carol’s Quest for Courage (A Santa’s Dog Story Book 2)

by JoAnn Sky Lance rides along with his best friend Santa each Christmas Eve, but one year he falls from the sleigh. He’s taken in by the animal shelter and then brought home by a military family who needs some help as Dad is called to serve his country. When Christmas Eve comes around the next year, what’s a dog to do? Will Lance return to the North Pole with Santa or stay with his new family? This sweet and imaginative picture book, written in verse with delightful illustrations, will tug at your heartstrings and have you rooting for Lance as he tries to decide where his heart truly lies. https://joannsky. com/santas-dog

‘Twas the Night Before Christmas Hidden Pictures Storybooks

by Highlights Families will start a new holiday tradition with this special Hidden Pictures edition of the beloved holiday poem, “’Twas the Night Before Christmas”—the debut title in the HighlightsTM Hidden Pictures® Storybooks series. www.amazon.com


$18.99. Another great stocking stuffer. Keep necklaces from getting tangled and save time thanks to Lasso. This smart product is perfect for safely traveling with your necklaces, storing your jewelry while on the go or organizing your necklaces at home. Lasso is a real problem solver and puts an end to this common frustration. It’s easy to use, accommodates a variety of chain lengths, can secure more than one necklace at a time, can store rings and small earrings inside the barrel and, as a bonus Lasso, it can be used to wrap your earbud cords and charger cords. Lasso easily fits inside purses and travel bags. www.shoplasso.com


Our Kids Magazine | December 2019

by JoAnn Sky Root for Santa’s singing dog as she proves that courage grows inside each of us. Santa’s singing dog is too afraid to sing. Carol leaves the North Pole in search of her voice but instead finds a girl in need of help. Can Carol overcome her own fears to help the girl? https://joannsky.com

Second-Chance Sam

by JoAnn Sky This is a story about starting over and making new friends that children of all ages will cherish, as it gently reminds us to be thankful for what we have, not to judge a book by its cover, and that everyone deserves a second chance. This sweet, unique story, written in verse with playful illustrations, will capture your heart as you share in Sam’s joy of finding friends, a purpose… and most importantly, love. https://joannsky.com/secondchance-sam

My First Farm by Brio

This frustration-free train set will give small children hours of fun and help teach them about farmyard animals. The five wooden animals fit into the animal wagon ready to be transported by train to the farm. Each animal also comes with three distinct sounds, which are activated automatically when placed in the farm meadow. Learning about animals has never been so much fun. www.brio.us


Explore the world and feast on sweet treats with your kids this holiday season with eat2explore’s “Explore World Holiday Treats.” eat2explore’s fun, limited-edition, holiday treat boxes are “explorer boxes” from three countries, Japan, Croatia and Austria. You’ll have a great time learning about the history of Japanese Mochi, Croatian Gingerbread and Austrian Linzer Cookies while baking up tasty treats. Each of the boxes include an easy-to-follow recipe and shopping list. The great part is the boxes do not include perishable products, so you can use the included ingredients and bake when you have time. www.eat2explore.com LIKE US @ facebook.com/OurKidsMagazineSA



Baby Toys

Tiny Love: Black & White Gymini Deluxe Infant Activity Play Mat

The contrasting black & white design provides the perfect visual stimulation. Its various textures, sounds and features provide ongoing auditory and tactile stimulation. Featuring 18 Delelopment activities and interactive toys that help develop gross and fine motor skills; visual, auditory and tactile senses; language, communication, cognition and EQ. https://www.tinylove.com

Tiny Love: 4–in–1 Here I Grow Mobile Activity Center This 4-in-1 mobile activity cen-

ter encourages your baby to discover the Seven Developmental Wonders: cognition, language, fine motor skills, senses, gross motor skills, creativity, and emotional intelligence. Babies can explore a new world around them with the help of stimulating features, fascinating textures, and vibrant colors. Features six developmental toys, adjustable height options for growing babies and 360-degree rotating seat. https://www.tinylove.com



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December 2019 | OurKidsMagazine.com





December 21 / Free Movie in the Park: The Nutcracker & The Four Realms Grab a blanket and come down for a special showing of The Nutcracker & The Four Realms on the lawn. This event is FREE to attend. Movie starts at sunset, approximately 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. Tower of the Americas, 739 E Cesar Chavez Blvd.

December 16-17 / Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer - The Musical This beloved TV classic soars off the screen and onto the stage this holiday season. Come see all of your favorite characters from the special including Santa and Mrs. Claus, Hermey the Elf, Bumble the Abominable Snow Monster, Clarice, Yukon Cornelius  and, of course, Rudolph, as they come to life in this fun-filled musical. 7:30 p.m. Tickets from $26.50. Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, 100 Auditorium Cir. www.tobincenter.org

Congradulations to Our Kids Magazine 2020 Cover Kids Contest Winner! James Carter Cima, 16 months old, dressed as The Red Baron. 24

Our Kids Magazine | December 2019

To Advertise Call 210-305-4181

1 Sunday

The Nutcracker - Ballet San Antonio: With live music performed by the San Antonio Symphony, Noam Aviel, conductor and an original commission and world premiere, choreographed by Easton and Haley Smith. The holidays aren’t complete until you experience the magic, humor and beauty of The Nutcracker! Ticket prices vary. Show times 2:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Morning performances for homeschooled children available (see website for details). Tickets from $35. Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, 100 Auditorium Cir. www.tobincenter.org Caring Santa: Come for a private photo experience for children with special needs and their families. Children will have the opportunity to visit with Santa and have their photo taken with him. We will make the necessary adjustments to the environment to support the sensory, physical and other developmental needs of children of all abilities for this special event. 9 to 11 a.m. Ingram Park Mall, 6301 NW Loop 410. Must RSVP at https://www.simon. com/ The Magik Theatre: Tiny Tim’s Christmas Carol: Tiny Tim longs to have his father home on Christmas day, but mean old Mr. Scrooge won’t give Bob Crachit the day off! There must be a way to change Scrooge’s mind – perhaps a ghost or two will set Scrooge right. Can this clever boy and his best friend Charlotte save Christmas and change the heart of the meanest man in town? With a little help from some kindly sellers at the market and a touch of Christmas magic, anything is possible. Adapted from the classic Charles Dickens’ novel, Tony Award winner Ken Ludwig and his son, Jack Ludwig, write this heartwarming Christmas tale that is sure to delight all ages. Showtimes and ticket prices vary. The Magik Theatre, 420 S Alamo St, San Antonio. https:// www.magiktheatre.org/event/tinytim/ Santa Express with Santa & Mrs. Claus: Kids of all ages can have their photo taken with Santa for ONLY $5 with the money going to T’eed off at Cancer. After your child visits with Santa he will give them a Golden Ticket for a Round Trip ride on The Santa Express (Trackless Train). If they ‘Believe’ their ticket will get hole punched and they will board the Train. The ticket is theirs to keep. Get into the spirit of Christmas with thousands of dealers who are selling holiday gifts and more for all tastes and budgets. Admission is Free. 12:30 – 4:30 p.m. Parking $4 per car. Trader’s Village, 9333 Southwest Loop 410. https:// tradersvillage.com/san-antonio/events/ santa-express-santa-mrs-claus/ Camp Fair 2020 | www.OurKids.camp


Please note: Event dates, times and details are subject to change. Always double check by phone, website or Facebook for event updates.

3 Tuesday

Little Explorers- Reindeer!: Join us to take a look at deer and find out what makes them special. Preschoolers and their caregivers can use their five senses for fun and adventure as they discover nature through stories, crafts, games, songs and outdoor exploration. The third Tuesday of each month will feature special guest Mother Nature for story time. $5 per family. 10 to 11 a.m. Cibolo Nature Center Library, 140 City Park Road, Boerne. http://www.cibolo.org The Nutcracker - Ballet San AntonioSensory Friendly Performance: With live music performed by the San Antonio Symphony, Noam Aviel, conductor and an original commission and world premiere, choreographed by Easton and Haley Smith. The holidays aren’t complete until you experience the magic, humor and beauty of The Nutcracker! 10:00 a.m. Student Tickets: $8 / Adult Tickets: $10. Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, 100 Auditorium Cir. www.tobincenter.org

4 Wednesday

Sights & Sounds of Christmas: Celebrate the holiday season with thousands of lights, photos with Santa, ice skating, a petting zoo, carnival rides, shopping, food and much more. One day admission is $5 or an 8 day pass will be available for $15. Admission for children 12 and under is always free! See website for adults 5K and children’s 1K details. 5 to 11 p.m. San Marcos Plaza Park, 401 E. Hopkins St., San Marcos. http://sights-n-sounds.org/ The Nutcracker Ballet Tea Party: Join Ballet San Antonio for its eagerly anticipated annual event, The Nutcracker Ballet Tea Party! Don’t miss The Nutcracker Market, a special performance and photo opportunities with the BSA Dancers, as well as fun, new kid-friendly activities and crafts! 5:00 p.m. $75. Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, 100 Auditorium Cir. www.tobincenter.org SAMA Playdates – Festivals and Celebrations: Playdates cultivate, nurture and inspire creativity while developing an appreciation of art and world cultures. Toddlers experience stories, gallery activities, hands-on art, movement and music. Space is limited, first-come, first-served. Ages 2-4. Free with museum admission. 10:00 to 10:45 a.m. San Antonio Museum of Art, 200 W. Jones Ave. https://www. samuseum.org/

Astronomy in the Park: Join astronomers and other stargazers to observe the sky through large telescopes in an informational program with the San Antonio Astronomical Association. 5:30 to 9:00 p.m. every Wednesday, weather permitting. Free. Raymond Rimkus (Park Parking Lot), 6440 Evers Rd., Leon Valley. http://sanantonioastronomy.org/

5 Thursday

Sights & Sounds of Christmas: See December 4

6 Friday

The Magik Theatre: Disney Frozen Jr.: The Magik Performing Arts Academy presents a full length, professionally staged production of Frozen Jr. for students ages 8 to 17. A story of true love and acceptance between sisters, Frozen JR. expands upon the emotional relationship and journey between Princesses Anna and Elsa. When faced with danger, the two discover their hidden potential and the powerful bond of sisterhood. With a cast of beloved characters and loaded with magic, adventure, and plenty of humor, Frozen JR. is sure to thaw even the coldest heart! Frozen JR. will be performed by the students of the Magik Performing Arts Academy. See website for show times. $10. The Magik Theatre, 420 S Alamo St, San Antonio. https://www.magiktheatre. org/event/tinytim/ Light The Night Christmas Parade and Afterglow: The Fredericksburg Chamber of Commerce will host the AfterGlow portion of the parade from 3 to 9 p.m. that will include diverse foods, local wines, holiday shopping and family entertainment. Santa Claus and Mrs. Claus will be available for free photos in his sleigh from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. Parade route along Main Street between Washington and Edison Streets, and will go forward rain or shine. Free to the public. Marktplatz, Main St., Fredericksburg. 830-997-5000. www.lightthenightchristmasparade.com Miss Anastasia’s Wild and Wacky PreWeekend Story Time: Miss Anastasia combines story time and a delightful craft each Friday. Free. 10:30 a.m. to noon. Twig Book Shop in the Can Plant Building, 306 Pearl Parkway Ste. 106. http://www. thetwig.com/miss-anastasia ArtStrolls- I Like Myself: Join us every first Friday of the month. Explore the McNay December 2019 | OurKidsMagazine.com


www.thesanantonioriverwalk.com/events/ christmas-at-the-caverns Farmer’s Market at Cibolo: Shop fresh local produce, farm fresh eggs, breads, jams, jellies, local honey and Texas Hill Country arts and crafts. Enjoy children’s craft activities, garden tours, and workshops. Free. 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Herff Farm, 33 Herff Road Boerne, TX 78006. https://www.cibolo.org Weihnachts Parade 2019 Theme “Christmas Songs”: The Weihnachts Parade is a long standing Boerne Christmas tradition. 2019 will be the 33rd anniversary. Up to 100 lit entries travel Main Street. The parade is always on the first Saturday of December. Free. 6 to 10 p.m. Maine Street, Down Town Boerne. http://www.ci.boerne.tx.us/564/ Weihnachts-Parade

Santa Express with Santa & Mrs. Claus come to Trader Village every weekend through December 22nd.

with your little one during a stroller tour and read stories from around the world. Event is from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. am. 10 am for children under 12 months. 11 am for children 12 months to 2 years. Meet in AT&T Lobby. Free for Members; $10 for nonmember adults. Strollers and baby carriers strongly encouraged. McNay Art Museum, 6000 N. New Braunfels Ave. www.mcnayart.org Sights & Sounds of Christmas: See December 4 The Nutcracker - Ballet San Antonio: See December 1

7 Saturday

Crab Fest 2019: Crab Fest at Traders Village is the ultimate way to celebrate Crab in all it’s glory. We’ll have great live music from 12:30 pm – 4:30pm. After you enjoy your Crab, take the kids to the Train Station and visit Santa & Mrs. Claus. Take home a 4×6 Photo for Only $5. Other photo packages available. Bring your family, invite your friends and enjoy a great afternoon of good food and great music. Admission is free, and parking $4 per car. Trader’s Village, 9333 Southwest Loop 410. https://tradersvillage.com/ san-antonio/events/crab-fest-2019/ Breakfast with Santa at Rolling Oaks Mall: Free at 8:30 but must RSVP to Kimberly.laque@washingtonprime.com no later than December 2nd. Rolling Oaks Mall, 6909 N Loop 1604 E. https://rollingoaksmall.com/ Disney Jr. Holiday Party: A dazzling musical wonderland where children and their


Our Kids Magazine | December 2019

families can sing and dance along to their favorite Disney Junior songs plus holiday classics with their favorite Disney friends, including Mickey & Minnie Mouse, the Puppy Dog Pals, Vampirina and many more, plus a special visit from Santa Claus! Majestic Theatre, 224 E. Ticket prices from $24.50. Children one year of age and older require a ticket. Shows at noon and 4 p.m. 224 Houston St. www. majesticempire.com Miss Anastasia’s Special Guest SaturdayBiscuit the Puppy: Come see Miss Anastasia and her special guest, Biscuit the Puppy for a fun-filled morning. Free. 10:30 a.m. Twig Book Shop in the Can Plant Building, 306 Pearl Parkway Ste. 106. https://www.thetwig.com/ The MarketPlace @ Old Town Helotes: Music, food, handcrafted crafts, inflatable slide, and children’s activities, plus complimentary face painting from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. Free. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. 14391 Riggs Rd., Helotes. http://www.helotesmarketplace.com/ Christmas at The Caverns: Hear your favorite carols echo through Texas’ largest underground cavern system. Get pictures with Santa “Spelunker” Claus, then round up his reindeer in our outdoor maze. As the sun sets behind our 30-foot tall Christmas tree, a hayride rolls through the hills, families roast s’mores, enjoy games, and music! Tickets from $23.99. December 7 - 8: 4 pm 9:30 pm. December 14 - 15: 4pm - 9:30 pm. December 21 - 23: 5 pm - 10:30 pm. Natural Bridge Caverns, 26495 Natural Bridge Caverns Rd., San Antonio https://

Free Family Night: Victorian to Steampunk: Get into the holiday spirit with fun art activities that range from traditional Victorian to Steampunk! Craft Victorian angel ornaments, Steampunk collages, and more at this festive, free family night. 4 to 8 p.m. San Antonio Museum of Art, 200 W. Jones Ave. https:// www.samuseum.org River of Lights Illumination: Enjoy familyfriendly art activities, and the Museum Reach River of Lights. Free general admission. 4:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. Start at the museum (200 W. Jones Avenue), and along the River Walk. https://www. samuseum.org Kids ROCK San Antonio: Kids can rock too with this non-timed, non-competitive one mile fun run open to kids grades K-7 that encourages children to embrace exercise. All participants will receive an Exclusive Finisher Medal, participant T-shirt, FREE admission to the San Antonio Zoo. Registration $32.00. Run starts at 9:30 a.m. 301 E Travis St. https://www. runrocknroll.com/en/Events/San-Antonio/ The-Races/KiDS-ROCK 15th Annual Jingle Bell Jamboree: Holiday shopping extravaganza! Over 70 local vendors, concession sales, appearance by Santa and performances by Judson ISD students. Free. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Judson High School, 9142 FM 78, Converse. https://www.judsonisd.org Nutcracker Greater San Antonio Academy of Ballet: Greater San Antonio Academy of Ballet presents, THE NUTCRACKER! This performance features the students in the Academy. Performance is at 7:00 p.m. on December 7 and 2:00 on December 8. $20 in advance or $25 at the door. St. Phillip’s College- Watson Fine Arts Center, 1801 Martin Luther King Dr. San Antonio 78203. https://www.facebook.com/greatersaballet/ or for tickets: https://www. To Advertise Call 210-305-4181

tututix.com/client/gsab/ Santa’s Railroad Wonderland: An extravaganza of Christmas activities including night time train rides. Just about every part of our forty acre site is Decemberorated, from the historic depot, the trains, the garden railroad, our three other scale model railroad layouts and everything else in between. Bring your camera and make your own Christmas memories. Free Parking and Train Rides are included with admission. Adults $12, Children aged 4-12, $10, Children under 4 free. Free for annual pass holders. Military discount available. 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Texas Transportation Museum, 11731 Wetmore Road. http://www.txtransportationmuseum.org Sights & Sounds of Christmas: See December 4 The Nutcracker - Ballet San Antonio: See December 1 The Magik Theatre: Disney Frozen Jr.: See December 6 Santa Express with Santa & Mrs. Claus: See December 1

8 Sunday

Christmasville, Texas @ NW Campus: A family-oriented event that is full of

seasonal festivities that include Santa, Snow Slide, a Carousel, Train Rides, food and more. $2 per person. Register online. 5 to 7:30 p.m. Mission City Church - Northwest Campus, 24135 I-10, San Antonio, TX www.christmasvilletexas.com Christmasville, Texas @ Central Campus: A family-oriented event that is full of seasonal festivities that include Santa, Snow Slide, a Carousel, Train Rides, food and more. $2 per person. Register online. 5 to 7:30 p.m. Mission City Church, 2220 NW Military Hwy, San Antonio, TX 78213. www.christmasvilletexas.com Annual Liederkranz Christmas ConcertA Star Is Born: The San Antonio Liederkranz, an all-male chorus, founded in 1892, presents its annual Christmas Concert, performing German, religious, and popular choral music. $15. Refreshments included. 3 p.m. San Antonio Shrine Auditorium, 901 N Loop 1604 W. San Antonio. http://www.saliederkranz.org/ Pet Photo with Santa: Bring your furry friend for photos with Santa. 6 to 8 p.m. Ingram Park Mall, 6301 NW Loop 410. https://www.simon.com/ Winter Spectacular, Presented by Jewel of Art Dance Studio: Winter Spectacular showcases the brilliant jewels of The Jewel of Art Dance Studio. The show

will surely put you right into the holiday spirit. With dancers, singers and performers who will be showcasing spectacular performances to some of the best holiday music, it’s the perfect show for the whole family! 3:00. See website for ticket prices. Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, 100 Auditorium Cir. www.tobincenter.org Christmas at Coker: Christmas at Coker is a musical celebration of the season, complete with the sharing of family Christmas pictures, story time for kids, a carol sing, and stunning performances by the choirs and orchestra. Free. 5 to 6 p.m. Coker United Methodist Church , 231 E North Loop Rd. https://www.coker.org/ Nutcracker with the Greater San Antonio Academy of Ballet: Join Greater San Antonio Academy of Ballet students ages 5-13 for TWO fantastic shows. We also welcome Oklahoma City Ballet Principal Dancers as Sugar Plum & Cavalier. There will be a brief meet and greet after the show; this production is perfect for the entire family! December 8th, 7:00; December 9th, 2:00. Prices from $15.00. 1530 San Pedro Avenue. https://www. facebook.com/events/2292079477771245/ The Nutcracker - Ballet San Antonio: See December 1 Christmas at The Caverns: See December 7

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December 2019 | OurKidsMagazine.com


debut on the big screen, experience it like never before with the San Antonio Symphony performing the Academy Award-winning soundtrack live with the film. Tickets from $26.00. 7:30 p.m. Majestic Theatre, 224 E. Houston St. www.majesticempire.com Art in the Park: Join us each month for a night full of diverse artistic activities for kids. Art in the Park is brought to Hemisfair in collaboration with USAA®. Enjoy painting, balloon making, muysic, and face painting. Food trucks will be present. Free! 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Central Games Plaza, Hemisfair, 434 S Alamo St. http://hemisfair.org/

Mickey, Minnie and friends will be attending the Disney Junior Holiday Party that comes to the Majestic Theatre on Saturday, December 7th. Nutcracker Greater San Antonio Academy of Ballet: See December 7 Santa’s Railroad Wonderland: See December 7 Crab Fest 2019: See December 7 Santa Express with Santa & Mrs. Claus: See December 1

9 Monday

Little Sprouts – Let’s Get Ready for Winter: Bring your little one, age 3-5 years, to the Garden for kid-friendly fun! What do creatures do to prepare for the cold? How do plants survive the harsh conditions in Winter? Fun-filled activities help teach children about the changing season! Each Little Sprout Monday includes storytelling, kids’ crafts and hands-on explorations at your child’s pace. Fee: $15 ($13.50 member) per adult; $8 ($7 member) per child. All participants must be registered. A parent or guardian must stay with the child. All children and adults attending must be registered separately. 10 to 11:30 a.m. San Antonio Botanical Garden, 555 Funston Place. http://www.sabot.org/

10 Tuesday

Little Explorers- Reindeer!: See December 3

11 Wednesday

Astronomy in the Park: See December 4 Sights & Sounds of Christmas: See December 4

12 Thursday

The Magik Theatre Presents: A Charlie


Our Kids Magazine | December 2019

Brown Christmas!: The Magik Theatre returns with the 5th annual production of A Charlie Brown Christmas! When Charlie Brown complains about the overwhelming materialism he sees among everyone during the Christmas season, Lucy suggests that he become director of the school Christmas pageant. Charlie Brown accepts, but this proves to be a frustrating endeavor. When an attempt to restore the proper holiday spirit with a forlorn little Christmas fir tree fails, he needs Linus help to discover the real meaning of Christmas. Showtimes and ticket prices vary. Charline McCombs Empire Theatre, 226 N. St. Mary’s St. http://www.majesticempire.com/shows/ acharliebrownchristmas2019 Art Crawl - Exploring the Five Senses: Moms, dads and caregivers can bring their babies for a walk through the museum galleries for a guided tour. Talks are geared toward adults while the art selections are chosen to engage the adults and infants 0-18 months. Tour includes group play and social time. Free with museum admission. 10:00 to 10:45 a.m. San Antonio Museum of Art, 200 W. Jones Ave. https://www.samuseum.org Sights & Sounds of Christmas: See December 4

13 Friday

Cibolo City Ballet Presents The Nutcracker: Cibolo City Ballet brings to life the timeless holiday tradition of The Nutcracker. $28. Friday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 4:00 p.m. Jo Long Theatre, Carver Cultural Community Center, 226 N. Hackberry, https://thecarver.org/events/ San Antonio Symphony: The Wizard of Oz: We’re off to see the Symphony! Eighty years after The Wizard of Oz’s

The Nutcracker: Cibolo City Ballet brings to life the timeless holiday tradition of The Nutcracker. $28. Friday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 4 p.m. Jo Long Theatre, Carver Cultural Community Center, 226 N. Hackberry. https://thecarver.org/event/ cibolo-city-ballet-presents-nutcracker-3/ Sights & Sounds of Christmas: See December 4 Miss Anastasia’s Wild and Wacky PreWeekend Story Time: See December 6 The Magik Theatre Presents: Charlie Brown Christmas: See December 12

14 Saturday

Nature Holiday Ornaments: Make nature ornaments for your favorite holiday. All supplies included. Suggested donation of $3.00 per ornament. 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Phil Hardberger Park Salado Outdoor Classroom13203 Blanco Rd., San Antonio. https://www.philhardbergerpark.org/ Super Fun Saturday: Holiday in the Garden: At the last Super Fun Saturday of the year, get in the holiday spirit at Yanaguana Garden. Activities will include visits with Santa, Decemberorate your own stocking, make your own ornament, jumping elf photo op by Aqua Acro Entertainment, carolers by The American Caroling Company, letters to Santa station, hot chocolate bar and the Texas Snow Dome! 11 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Hemisfair, 434 S Alamo St. 210-709-4750. http://hemisfair.org/ 2019 Ramblin Man’s Spirit of Christmas Toy Run: Ride in and join the Ramblin Man’s Spirit of Christmas Toy Run and help support the Bair Foundation Child and Family Ministries and The Alexandra Cohen Foundation for Veterans. Enjoy music, food and beverages. Collecting toys for the Toy Run, stop by anytime to drop off a toy. 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. Cowboy’s Alamo City Harley-Davidson, 11005 North IH 35. San Antonio, TX. https://www.facebook.com/events/2112510755720264/ Re-enactments of the “Battle of Béjar”: To Advertise Call 210-305-4181

Come and witness the five day battle for the city of Bejar located in downtown San Antonio at Maverick Plaza (La Villita). The battle will conclude with the surrender of the Mexican garrison to the Texan Federalist Army. Admission: FREE. 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Re-enactments at 11 a.m. and again at 2 p.m. Maury Maverick Plaza in Historic La Villita. 418 Villita St https://www.texasarmy.org/ events/battle-of-bejar 41st Annual TubaMeister Christmas: Enjoy a holiday performance by local tuba and euphonium players along the San Antonio Riverwalk. Free. Noon to 5 p.m., at the Arneson River Theater, 418 Villita St. (on the River Walk in La Villita). www.thetubameisters.com Sights & Sounds of Christmas: See December 4 Farmer’s Market at Cibolo: See December 7 Christmas at The Caverns: See December 7 Santa’s Railroad Wonderland: See December 7 The Magik Theatre Presents: Charlie Brown Christmas: See December 12 San Antonio Symphony: The Wizard of Oz: See December 13 Santa Express with Santa & Mrs. Claus: See December 1

15 Sunday

San Antonio Wind Symphony: Annual Christmas Concert: The San Antonio Wind Symphony will present our annual Christmas Concert, focusing on traditional Christmas Songs as well as music from San Antonio’s Cultural heritage. Free. 6 to 7 p.m. UTSA Department of Music, Recital Hall, 1 Key Circle, San Antonio, TX 78249. http://www.sawinds. com/ 3rd Annual Elf Run: Gear up in your best elf-inspired attire and join us at the Children’s Rehabilitation Institute Teleton USA’s (CRIT) 2019 Elf Run. Bring your family and Camp Fair 2020 | www.OurKids.camp

friends and join us to support children with disabilities at the Third Annual Elf Run! See website for divisions and registration fees. Event is from 7:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. Children’s Rehabilitation Institute Teleton USA, 10839 Quarry Park, San Antonio. https://www.facebook.com/ events/483343522394558/ Cibolo City Ballet’s- The Nutcracker: See December 13 Christmas at The Caverns: See December 7

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Santa’s Railroad Wonderland: See December 7 The Magik Theatre Presents: Charlie Brown Christmas: See December 12 Cibolo City Ballet Presents The Nutcracker: See December 13 Santa Express with Santa & Mrs. Claus: See December 1

16 Monday

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer- The Musical: This beloved TV classic soars off the screen and onto the stage this holiday season.  Come see all of your favorite characters from the special including Santa and Mrs. Claus, Hermey the Elf, Bumble the Abominable Snow Monster, Clarice, Yukon Cornelius  and, of course, Rudolph, as they come to life in this fun-filled musical. 7:30 p.m. Tickets from $26.50. Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, 100 Auditorium Cir. www.tobincenter.org

17 Tuesday

Little Explorers- Reindeer!: See December 3 Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer- The Musical: See December 16

18 Wednesday

Astronomy in the Park: See December 4

19 Thursday

Quarry Village Presents the 5th Annual Holiday Block Party: Enjoy live jazz music,

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December 2019 | OurKidsMagazine.com



1300 San Pedro Ave. https://nutcrackersa. com/ Toddler Art Play- I Like Myself: Mini museum visit meets creative playtime for children under 5. Wear paint clothes for a fun, messy time at the McNay! Free for Members; $10 for nonmember adults. Lead funding of the McNay’s educational programs is most generously provided by Kronkosky Charitable Foundation. 10:30 to 11:30 am. McNay Art Museum, 6000 N. New Braunfels Ave. www.mcnayart.org American Midwest Ballet’s The Nutcracker with San Antonio Metropolitan Ballet: See December 19 Experience a holiday circus like no other at Cirque Musica coming to the Tobin on Monday, December 23rd. complimentary seasonal drinks + bites, a custom pet-friendly photo station with Santa (1 print for each guest who brings a canned good for the SA Food Bank), plus goodies and discounts from Quarry Village retailers. This event is free, family- friendly, and open to the public. 6 to 8 p.m. Artessa at Quarry Village Luxury Apartment Homes, 260 E. Basse. https://www.facebook.com/ events/2649524158420759/ American Midwest Ballet’s The Nutcracker with San Antonio Metropolitan Ballet: Always fresh, lively, and thoroughly entertaining, The Nutcracker returns with the visual splendor and charming story that make it a family favorite. Set to one of composer Pyotr Tchaikovsky’s most famous works, it transports audiences to the enchanting Land of Snow and the opulent Kingdom of Sweets, featuring a uniquely breathtaking Waltz of the Flowers scene. The Nutcracker includes a cast of 130 professional and student dancers, and features lavish sets and more than 250 beautiful costumes. Ticket prices and times vary 2 p.m. or 7:30 p.m. Lila Cockrell Theatre, 200 E. Market St. www.artssa.org

• Balloons • Magic • Storytelling • Face Painting

Miss Anastasia’s Wild and Wacky PreWeekend Story Time: See December 6

20 Friday

21 Saturday

The Nutcracker at San Antonio College (SAC) Sensory Friendly Performance: Don’t miss The Nutcracker a holiday classic of a young girl named Clara who is given a Nutcracker as a gift and later that evening dreams of encounters with mice and soldiers in a battle. Her Nutcracker turns into a Prince to save the day but it is she who saves him instead. He thanks her with a fantastic journey through the Kingdom of Snow and the Kingdom of Sweets. The Nutcracker is presented by Alamo City Performing Arts Association featuring Symphony Viva, Alamo City Dance Company and dancers from the San Antonio School for the Performing Arts. 7:30 p.m. $20. McAllister Theater,

Hecho A Mano: A holiday shopping event offering the community and visitors a unique experience just in time for the holidays, this unique arts and crafts event features an array of handcrafted specialty items that encompass both traditional and contemporary styles by local, regional and international artists. Admission is Free and opened to the public. Alternate location available in case of rain. 12 to 6

Holiday Pops: San Antonio’s favorite holiday tradition continues! Ring in the holidays at The Tobin Center with the San Antonio Symphony Mastersingers and your San Antonio Symphony in a magical celebration of the season! Join us for an audience sing-along and a program featuring both traditional and popular music to get you in the holiday spirit. Tickets from $15.00. Show times vary. The Tobin Center, 100 Auditorium Circle. www. tobincenter.org

The Nutcracker at San Antonio College (SAC): Don’t miss The Nutcracker a holiday classic of a young girl named Clara who is given a Nutcracker as a gift and later that evening dreams of encounters with mice and soldiers in a battle. Her Nutcracker turns into a Prince to save the day but it is she who saves him instead. He thanks her with a fantastic journey through the Kingdom of Snow and the Kingdom of Sweets. The Nutcracker is presented by Alamo City Performing Arts Association featuring Symphony Viva, Alamo City Dance Company and dancers from the San Antonio School for the Performing Arts. Times and ticket prices vary by date. From $35. McAllister Theater, 1300 San Pedro Ave. https://nutcrackersa.com/

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Our Kids Magazine | December 2019

New Bookings Only Book Online Expires 12/31/19

To Advertise Call 210-305-4181

p.m. Plaza Guadalupe, 1327 Guadalupe St. SA, TX 78207. http://www.guadalupeculturalarts.org/hecho-a-mano/ Sarita’s Dance Studio – Rockin Christmas: A Christmas show full of magic & excitement with beautiful costumes. A perfect Christmas treat for the whole family. Performance is at 7:00 p.m. Jo Long Theatre at the Carver Community Cultural Center, 226 N. Hackberry. https://thecarver.org/event/ saritas-dance-studio-rockin-christmas/ Free Movie in the Park: The Nutcracker & The Four Realms: Grab a blanket and come down for a special showing of The Nutcracker & The Four Realms on the lawn. This event is FREE to attend. Movie starts at sunset, approximately 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. Tower of the Americas, 739 E Cesar Chavez Blvd. Holiday Pops: See December 20 Christmas at The Caverns: See December 7 Santa’s Railroad Wonderland: See December 7 American Midwest Ballet’s The Nutcracker with San Antonio Metropolitan Ballet: See December 19 Santa Express with Santa & Mrs. Claus: See December 1

22 Sunday

Holiday Pops: See December 20 Christmas at The Caverns: See December 7 Santa’s Railroad Wonderland: See December 7

holiday music while enjoying an edge of your seat circus experience. Be amazed by the acrobats, aerialists, hilarious hijinks and holiday cheer. Tickets from $44.50. 7:00. The Tobin Center, 100 Auditorium Circle. www.tobincenter.org Christmas at The Caverns: See December 7

26 Thursday

Moscow Ballet Great Russian Nutcracker: This Christmas give your family the gift of Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker! Step into a simpler time filled with sweet dreams and Christmas magic. With world-class artists, over 200 dazzling costumes, stunning sets, towering puppets and soaring birds, don’t miss your chance to ring in the holidays with this acclaimed Christmas extravaganza. The New York Times, “Hot Ticket!” Celebrate this cherished holiday tradition and relive the dream with Tchaikovsky’s timeless score. Get tickets for the whole family now! Tickets from $35.50. December 26, 7:00 p.m. December 27, 3:00 p.m. or 7:00 p.m. Majestic Theatre, 224 E. Houston St. www.majesticempire.com

29 Sunday

Family Film Fest: Paris Double Feature: The perfect way to spend some quality time while the kiddos are on holiday vacation. A popcorn bar with all the fixings, hot chocolate, and crafts make for a wonderful, cozy afternoon at the McNay! The movies Ratatouille and The Tale of Despereaux will be screened in the Leeper Auditorium. Both films are Rated PG. No reservations required. Kids under 12 are FREE. $10 for member adults; $20 for nonmember adults. McNay Art Museum, 6000 N. New Braunfels Ave. www.mcnayart.org

30 Monday

Moscow Ballet Great Russian Nutcracker: See December 26

Celebrate San Antonio: Ring in the New Year in Beautiful Downtown San Antonio. Experience this FREE New Year’s Eve celebration and fireworks extravaganza. With live music, games and food, this downtown fiesta is the place to celebrate the New Year. Free. 6 p.m. to midnight. Hemisfair, 434 S Alamo St, San Antonio. https://saparksfoundation.org/event/ celebrate-sa/

28 Saturday

31 Tuesday

27 Friday

Miss Anastasia’s Wild and Wacky PreWeekend Story Time: See December 6

The Elf on the Shelf: A Christmas Musical: This toe-tapping tale tells the story of one The Nutcracker at SAC: See December 21 particularly impressive Scout Elf™ who must help his new, human family overSanta Express with Santa & Mrs. Claus: See December 1 come a personal loss and remember the importance of Christmas cheer. Can this tiny elf, along with a host of North Pole pals, make Christmas joyous for his family 23 Monday once again? Featuring an original story Cirque Musica presents Holiday Wishes: OKM_ 11:15 AM and score, dazzling sets and costumes, This show is theDec2019_Santa.pdf perfect opportunity1 for11/19/19 the entire family to experience great and wondrous moments that make even


the most cynical believe, this momentous celebration of the season leaves spirits high and captivates all with the splendor of Christmas. 7:00 p.m. Tickets from $29.50. Majestic Theatre, 224 E. Houston St. www.majesticempire.com

Valera Alamo Ball: The game features the number one picks from the Big 12 and Pac-12 conferences after the College Football Playoff selections. Tens of thousands of fans pack the Alamodome to cheer on their favorite teams in what is sure to be one of the most exciting games of the season! Tickets from $80. 6:30 p.m. Alamodome, 100 Montana St, San Antonio. https://www.thesanantonioriverwalk.com/events/valero-alamo-bowl1

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December 2019 | OurKidsMagazine.com