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    Birthday Blessings

    Friday night, we had the privilege of hosting a birthday party for a very special six-year-old.  Hosting birthday parties is always the highlight of our week, and this party was no exception. Amy Broker first contacted us about having a birthday party for her son, John, explaining that he had been adopted through foster care.  After gathering a bit of information, we offered to host his party for free and the date was set. During the party, while John was running and playing with family and friends, I had the opportunity to hear his incredible adoption story.  I don’t know about you, but adoption stories unfailingly touch the deepest parts…

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    Back to School Blues

    It’s Monday morning.  Only, it’s not just any Monday morning.  It’s THAT Monday morning. It’s the first day of school. Every Facebook post you see shows a child, dressed in new clothes and shoes, holding a chalkboard sign. You see memes with moms drinking mimosas after putting their little ones on the bus, and you just don’t understand why they are so joyful, when all you feel is emptiness.   You want to be excited about your children being in school, but you are feeling unimportant and “less than.” You have hours of time alone, that, just last week, was spent making snacks and taking trips to the park. You worry…

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    Guys & Dolls

    We change our items regularly. We want every visit here to be a new and different experience for our guests.  One thing that we’ve insisted on having here from the beginning is dolls. We’ve had life-sized baby dolls. We usually have a doll house full of peg dolls.  Right now, we have Barbies and Kens. Whatever kinds of dolls we have here, one thing we never call them is “girl toys.” There have been times that we’ve heard mothers say to their sons, “if your dad saw you playing with those doll babies, he’d have a fit.”  Do boys need dolls? This is not surprising to hear from parents who…

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    Positive Words Leave Lasting Positive Results

    Earlier this week, I was watching a child playing with MEGA BLOCKS in our Sprouts area.  She was very carefully adding one block, admiring her work and deciding which piece would be next.  These moments are what we strive for every single day. We get excited when we see our visitors using their imaginations. Our mission is to foster a lifelong love of learning through play, so naturally, an engaged child validates our work here. The Hardest Question to Hear After a few minutes of putting together what looked like a car or a spaceship, she looked up at her aunt and asked the question that we never want to…

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    We’re Hard to Find, and Even Harder to Forget

    Let us describe the scene when someone comes for their first visit. The GPS says, “You’ve Arrived!” The visitor looks around and sees a pizza shop and a tax office. The visitor decides to park their car on Main Street and walk to find 102a. There is no 102a on Main Street. We get it! The first time we came to 102a West Main Street, we were lost too! We had to call the owner of the building to direct us to the door. It’s definitely not easy to locate downtown. Sometimes, we like to pretend that being difficult to find is part of our charm. It’s like a scavenger…

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    Is it the End of Play?

    Play is dying. Yes, you heard that right.  The lover of all things play-related has admitted that the death of play is imminent. Each day we are getting closer to the end.  No, it is not a sudden, tragic death. The death of play has happened so slowly, that some of us haven’t even noticed how close to the end we really are. What’s really killing play? “I’m bored!” has become the new mantra of childhood.  Our children are spending less and less time outside, where the best type of play occurs.  In fact, children today spend less than half the amount of time our parents spent as children outside,…

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    Planted in Play | How we got here.

    We have been asked many times to share our story and how we came up with the idea for Planted in Play. This is a small piece of our journey into being museum owners… We should probably start by introducing ourselves. Our names are Tiffany and Joni. We are best friends and, most important to our story, we are both moms. Last August, we decided that we needed a place to take our children. While there are many places for active physical play, we knew there were no screen-free learning spaces in our community. We were desperate for a place we’d feel good about taking our kids to. You’ve all…