Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Settling into Summer with Sparkle Stories : A Sparkle Stories Review

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Having the kids all home for the summer is a blessing for sure - except when you have that sacred two or three hour window when one or two of your kids should be napping... the extra noise created by my older kids can be really disruptive to the toddler's nap and when the toddler doesn't nap the toddler isn't happy when means momma isn't happy....

I've read about Sparkle Stories in a few places including when they were mentioned in another blog a few months back and recently I decided to check them out when they introduced a FREE 10 day trial. My kids were hooked immediately. They ask to listen in the car, before bed during our "quiet" afternoons at home, all. the. time. which I don't mind because it is something I can easily say YES! to.
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So what are they? Sparkle Stories actually describes it quite perfectly "Sparkle Stories are simple, delightful and filled with a sense of wonder. They inspire children to play, to marvel, to laugh, and to be kind." Additionally the content is purely for children so "You'll never need to worry about inappropriate content - as we craft each of our stories to be perfect for young ears". The stories are beautifully written and are performed with many voices for each of the characters and different series - each with unique characters and themes.

The "story spinner" David as they call him has a lovley tone to his voice. The stories are not only magical and engaging but many of them have powerful messages that address anything from fear of the dark, to changes in a family's life, social struggles, bullying, to the emotions that come with ending/beginning a school year. 

There are also TON of stories just for fun that pique little one's imaginations, stir up creativity and inspire children to think and play!

I dedicated myself to creating a more structured home routine this summer what one of my children was repeatedly asking me what we were doing later today or tomorrow or next week. She wants to know the plan! And I found this was the perfect way to work sparkle stories into our day. I work ( a number of hours each day (often before the kids wake or after bed but it nice to get some time in during the day as well - since I'm usually freshest after my 1pm latte).

I have one napper still and really needed something that my older two children could do that was both mindful of their little sister and didn't require too much supervision from me that and had some educational value and inspired some quiet time so mommy could work a little bit. I think most parents would agree this is a pretty tall order. Now we're only a weeks days into summer but so far my plan is working (insert evil mom laugh here) but In all seriousness this has been a life saver on all fronts! Above is my middle kiddo who fell asleep the first afternoon they listened to the stories and took a solid 1/5 hour nap! If you were wondering - yes, those are vintage Little Mermaid Sheets from 1991 we used them for some fort building.

I set them up with a story in their room each afternoon for their "quiet time" and its become pretty well accepted most days. They love the stories and the characters and are even engaged in listening to the story. We've also began to listen during breakfast time recently - it seems to help them focus on eating. Getting a good solid breakfast is hard for us, my kids wake up ready to hit the road running and rarely want to stop to eat breakfast.

So here is how you can listen! There are a few different options.

By becoming a subscriber you can listen to unlimited stories as often as you like! Their app makes it really easy to stream content or download stories for offline listening. The app is searchable and sorted by age ranges, themes and the different original series available. You can also stream the stories from the mobile version of their website on your phone.

Sparkle stories releases a few stories each week on their podcast (like on demand radio, if you haven't used podcasts before). Which you can easily subscribe to wherever you choose to listen to podcasts (Apple users will have an embedded call with a purple microphone to manage podcast usage). Just search for Sparkle Stories and subscribe! Each time a new story is added you will be notified. Its super easy and FREE!

Sponsorship/Affiliate Disclaimer: only exists because of hours upon hours of work that comes directly from the heart of a mom who wants to make the Lehigh Valley a better place to raise your family. Because of our effort we publish a resource that makes your life as a parent easier, makes the Lehigh Valley more welcoming to a family new to the area and helps make the Lehigh Valley a more vibrant and engaging place for families to grow and live. In order to make it possible to continue doing this we must find ways to generate income from our work. At times you will see posts from sponsors who pay us a fee to help them spread the word about their business or event. All opinions expressed are 100% our own, the product reviewed in this blog article has been provided at no charge to us in exchange for our unbiased honest review. This article contains no affiliate links and we do not receive any compensation if you decide to try Sparkle Stories.  Barters and fees that we receive from our sponsors and affiliates help make the website the best it can possibly be, they put food on our family's table , provide you with great content and allow us to keep doing what we do! By patronizing the businesses who support us and by choosing to opt in to offers we share you keep alive - making it possible for us to continue to provide information and engaging content for years to come. Without you and without our valued sponsors the website could not continue to operate. We love all of our LVFGS Families and thank you for your support.

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