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Posts by MAMom

Have you tried involving him in the food prep/cooking & choosing recipes?  I find that when my kids have been the sous chefs for a meal, or selected the recipe (we get a lot of cookbooks, especially kids cookbooks with photos, from the libray) they are more interested in eating the results.  Both my kids have been peeling, chopping sauteeing, etc. since aorund 4 y.o.
My kids are about the same ages - DS is 9, DD is 6.    Bedtime during the school year is between 7-8pm for both of them, and not later than 8pm in the summer.  DS rises at 6am (sometimes earlier in the summer when it is lighter earlier) and can very rarely sleep beyond that no matter how late he goes to bed, so we keep a very tight bedtime with him.  He needs that amount of sleep and things go downhill quickly if he doesn't get it, even for one night.   DD is...
Luckily my DS (about to turn 9, but has been "into" Legos since around 5) seems to be able to appreciate both the sets (Harry Potter for him) and Lego free play/free building.   He has a big bin of piece for free play (mostly hand-me-downs) and I love to see how creative he is with all the building he does.  He spends about an hour each day Lego building, and when he's used up most of his pieces (every month or so), we take photos of his creations and then he breaks...
We've all enjoyed the Disney "Buddies" movies (Space Buddies & Snow Buddies) starring really cute golden retreiver pups.  Feel good movies that weren't scary.  Others that have gone over well in our family:   Wall-e   Mr. Popper's Penguins   Happy Feet   Eight Below (at least one pretty scary scene that we fast forwarded thru, when a walrus attacked a seal IIRC, but a good movie overall)   Ratatouille   Stuart Little   Annie didn't go over...
We do "dessert days" so each child can choose which days they eat desserts (2 during the week, and one on the weekend).  There are of course exceptions, but in general we try to follow this.   That gives them the freedom to have dessert when they really want it, not just when it's being served, and not everyday.  They learn willpower and about making choices.  I also pop in something sweet as an extra once or twice a week into lunchboxes (a couple of hershey kisses or a...
- Magnatiles - pricey, but we've gotten our money's worth out of these for DS (8) & DD (5.5) - Legos - Board games - Zingo, checkers, Blokus, memory game, bananagrams - Wooden marble run (DD uses it with her Hex bug...lol) - Kitchen set - wooden animals
We're looking too and this is on my list, though I haven't read it yet (but it got positive reviews on Amazon...) The Boy's Body Book: Everything You Need to Know for Growing Up YOU.  
Mine LOVE cutting paper snowflakes, and I love hanging them around the house! 
DS really enjoyed The Boxcar Children series in 1st & 2nd grade.  There are over 100 in the series, so no chance of running out anytime soon if he likes it   He also really liked George's Secret Key to the Universe  & George's Cosmic Treasure Hunt by Stephen Hawking & Lucy Hawking as well as the Little House series.   He hasn't read The Chronicles of Narnia yet, but I'm going to suggest them soon.    
Our local YMCA has lots of after school options for middle school age kids and the public school provides bus transport there.   Can she take the bus from school back to your neighborhood?  If you could find a good fit with a local SAHM (and if your DD has any interest in being a mother's helper) maybe you could work out an arrangement where she could spend at least part of the afternoon at their home helping take care of younger kids while the mom is getting dinner...
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