Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Fifteen Minutes Outside: 365 Ways to Get Out of the House and Connect with Your Kids, Book Review & Giveaway

One of my Green Goals for this year was to spend more time outside with my boys. We had a little taste of Spring over this past week and I am happy to report that we have gotten out 9 of the last 12 days. One of the most difficult things for me is coming up with activities for the boys to do outside. Sure they will run around for a bit or ride their bikes, which is great, but they do get board. Plus sometimes I need something a little more compelling to get them out the door. So when I first read about the book Fifteen Minutes Outside: 365 Ways to Get Out of the House and Connect with Your Kids, by Rebecca P. Cohen, I thought this would be the perfect tool for me.

"What if you got outside every day, and what if you could get your kids to come along? It sounds modest, but the effects, as dynamic outdoor spokesperson Rebecca Cohen herself can testify, are profound. This inspiring collection of activities gives families an idea for every day of the year, requiring little planning, no expertise and relatively little resources (time, cash, or patience!), no matter where they live. Simple and inspiring, this book is bursting with hundreds of easy ways to get your family out into nature a little bit every day."

I opened this book to start reading and very quickly fell in love with it. The ideas are broken up into months and then there is one listed for each day of the month plus extra tips throughout. What I really like is that the author's ideas are not these big elaborate things that you couldn't realistically do. These are simple activities for you to do with your children from ages 2 to 12. One activity Cohen suggests is to find and track animal prints in the snow. I adapted this a little and instead we found some deer tracks in the snow that we followed. Let me tell you, the kids looking for the tracks. There are also some good gardening with kids tips and activities that I want to try out once Spring really kicks and it warms up here.

I also do not like to be outside in inclement weather so when its raining, snowing or just super cold you normally won't find me bringing my 4 boys out. OK, never. I mentioned getting the kids outside 9 of the last 12 days - well those 3 days that we missed were due to rain. Once I can pick up some inexpensive rain boots for everyone and armed with my book, we can get in a little bit of outside time even on rainy days. Yes Cohen even has plenty of rainy activities like puddle jumping. I realize that puddle jumping might be a parents worst nightmare, but just think how much fun it could be for the kids!

I truly have enjoyed this book and it has already been so helpful for me to get my little men out of the house more. If the sun is shining, they'll eat lunch out on the deck. Or we'll stand up there and count the squirrels we see. Last week I posted about us all going for a hike in the woods. Well that was without a doubt inspired by this book. And just because there are 365 activities in there doesn't mean you have to do all of them. Some may not work for you while others you'll find you can't get enough of. You just need to have fun with it and choose the activities that you know our kids will enjoy. As a great supplement to her book, Rebecca Cohen also has two free downloads on her site: 50 Outdoor Activities Guide for Busy Families, which you can post by your door and Outdoor Classrooms Guide, which may be something you can share with your child's teacher.

Shop
Fifteen Minutes Outside: 365 Ways to Get Out of the House and Connect with Your Kids is available at Barnes & Noble in paperback or in Nook eBook.

Giveaway CLOSED
One (1) winner will receive a paperback copy of Fifteen Minutes Outside: 365 Ways to Get Out of the House and Connect with Your Kids, by Rebecca P. Coehn.

Mandatory Entry
Leave a comment telling me what your family's favorite outdoor activity is.

Extra Entries
- Head over to RebeccaPlants.com and tell me something you learned about Rebecca, the book or anything else. Worth 3 entries so leave 3 comments.
- Visit the Rebecca Plants Blog, leave a comment on any of her posts and then leave me a link to your comment. Worth 5 entries so leave 5 comments please.
- "Like" Green Mama's Pad on Facebook. Please leave me your first name and last name initial to validate. If you leave a comment on my wall you can give yourself an additional entry.
- Join the Fans of Rebecca Plants Group on Facebook. Please leave me your first name and last name initial to validate. If you are feeling inspired, you can tell them I sent you. :)
- Share this giveaway on Facebook. You can do this once daily. Leave link in comment.
- Follow Green Mama's Pad publicly on Google Friend Connect.
- Subscribe to my RSS feed in a reader or subscribe via e-mail. Your email must validate or it will not count.
- Add my Green Mama's Pad button to your sidebar or add Green Mama's Pad to your blogroll. Leave your blog link.
- Follow @GreenMamasPad on Twitter and and tweet this giveaway. You can tweet twice daily, at least 3 hours apart. Leave link to tweet in comment. You must have at least 50 followers. You can copy and paste the following:
#Win book Fifteen Minutes Outside: 365 Ways to Get Out of the House & Connect w/ Your Kids. #giveaway @GreenMamasPad http://bit.ly/emUfFL
- Stumble one of my non-giveaway posts and tell me which one. Worth 2 entries so leave 2 comments with your ID.
- Leave a comment on any of my non-giveaway posts and tell me which one.

This giveaway is open to US Residents 18+ only and will end on Tuesday, April 5 at 11:59pm EST. One  winner will be chosen at random using Random.org and will be posted on the Winner's Announcement Page. Winner has 48 hours to claim his/her prize otherwise a new winner will be picked. Please leave your e-mail address in all of your comment(s) so I can contact you. I will not share your e-mail address with anyone, it will strictly be used to notify you if you win. Good luck!

Please note that the opinions and views expressed in this review are my own and based on my personal experience with the product and/or company. You may encounter a different experience with this than I did. I received a copy of the book for review. This post contains affiliate links.

47 comments:

  1. We like to hike.

    lovelydomesticdiva (at) gmail (dot) com

    ReplyDelete
  2. I follow on gfc

    lovelydomesticdiva (at) gmail (dot) com

    ReplyDelete
  3. I learned that her book was inspired by her committing to get outside with her kids every single day for a year, no matter what the weather.

    lovelydomesticdiva (at) gmail (dot) com

    ReplyDelete
  4. I learned that her book was inspired by her committing to get outside with her kids every single day for a year, no matter what the weather.

    lovelydomesticdiva (at) gmail (dot) com
    2

    ReplyDelete
  5. I learned that her book was inspired by her committing to get outside with her kids every single day for a year, no matter what the weather.

    lovelydomesticdiva (at) gmail (dot) com
    3

    ReplyDelete
  6. This book looks awesome. We love to get the baseball gloves out and get a family game of catch in when the weather is nice.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I learned that her book was inspired by her committing to get outside with her kids every single day for a year, no matter what the weather. I do this too - my kids hate it on the rainy days... but it's important to me :)

    ktgonyea at gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  8. GFC Follower (ktgonyea)

    ktgonyea at gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  9. walking mverno@roadrunner.com

    ReplyDelete
  10. walking in the woods...

    dwarzel at hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  11. We love to go outside "exploring"...our girls are too young to really consider anything we do actual hiking. On the other hand, the slower pace allows for lots of discovery and fun. We had a nice short taste of spring this past week, but now it's back to the 30's for the forseable future, boo!

    ReplyDelete
  12. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  13. It's Spring =D I wanna find some new stuff to do outside with my 6, and that's why I wanna win!

    natalienweeks@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  14. Rebecca has a tv show! good to know if i ever start watch'n tv again =)

    natalienweeks@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  15. Rebecca has a tv show! good to know if i ever start watch'n tv again =)(2)

    natalienweeks@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  16. Rebecca has a tv show! good to know if i ever start watch'n tv again =)(3)

    natalienweeks@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  17. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  18. commented on her Best Thursday ever post...and love the blog!


    http://www.rebeccaplants.com/wordpress/?p=1311#comment-1942

    natalienweeks@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  19. commented on her Best Thursday ever post...and love the blog! (2)


    http://www.rebeccaplants.com/wordpress/?p=1311#comment-1942

    natalienweeks@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  20. commented on her Best Thursday ever post...and love the blog! (3)


    http://www.rebeccaplants.com/wordpress/?p=1311#comment-1942

    natalienweeks@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  21. commented on her Best Thursday ever post...and love the blog! (4)


    http://www.rebeccaplants.com/wordpress/?p=1311#comment-1942

    natalienweeks@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  22. commented on her Best Thursday ever post...and love the blog!(5)


    http://www.rebeccaplants.com/wordpress/?p=1311#comment-1942

    natalienweeks@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  23. I like your facebook page (natalie w.)

    natalienweeks@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  24. I posted on your wall =)

    natalienweeks@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  25. I joined the Fans of Rebecca group! (natalie w)

    natalienweeks@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  26. I added your button to my new blog!

    could use some followers btw! lol

    http://mylittlegreenbabies.blogspot.com/

    natalienweeks@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  27. I RT'd!..Thank you VERY much for the giveaway, I am very happy to have stumbled upon your blog and to have learned about Rebecca! Both will be an awesome contribution to my lifestyle! xx

    https://twitter.com/#!/natalienweeks/status/51281350170390528

    natalienweeks@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  28. This sounds like a great book!

    WE have a sand and water table on our front deck - that's abut all we do for outdoor activity when the weather is nice. I could use some ideas!
    -Treysar@aol.com
    Tracey :)

    ReplyDelete
  29. I like to give my 2yo "his" rake and we do yardwork. Sounds so un-fun, but we love it!

    ReplyDelete
  30. Our favorite is hiking.
    lazybones344 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  31. GFC follower
    lazybones344 at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  32. Our favorite outdoor activity is to walk around the lake and feed the ducks

    jason(at)allworldautomotive(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  33. I learned her book was featured in better Homes and Gardens!

    jason(at)allworldautomotive(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  34. #2

    I learned her book was featured in better Homes and Gardens!

    jason(at)allworldautomotive(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  35. #3

    I learned her book was featured in better Homes and Gardens!

    jason(at)allworldautomotive(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  36. Green mama Facebook Fan

    Parker OZgood

    jason(at)allworldautomotive(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  37. Join the Fans of Rebecca Plants Group on Facebook

    Parker Ozgood


    jason(at)allworldautomotive(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  38. Posted to Facebook

    http://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=162017587187749&id=100000922668816

    jason(at)allworldautomotive(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  39. Follower

    Nickolay

    jason(at)allworldautomotive(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  40. Subscriber

    jason(at)allworldautomotive(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  41. our favorite outdoor activity is gardening, our two year old has her own little vegetable patch and she tends to it when we tend to our big family veggie patch. Its so cute to watch her as she watches things grow

    ReplyDelete
  42. We love to go bicycling together!

    theyyyguy@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  43. walking and racing

    jdmimi at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete
  44. we love to go on nature walks and bike rides
    susansmoaks at gmail dot com

    ReplyDelete

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