Tag Archives: family

Teaching Your Kids to be Patriotic

By Brandy Walleshauser of No Time Mommy


I met my husband a few weeks before he left for basic training. It was one of the toughest decisions he ever made, but after 2001 he felt like he had to defend his country. We welcomed our first daughter while he was still in the Army and he deployed to Iraq a second time two weeks after she was born. Just three short months later, we lost some incredible friends by an IED. It was at that point that we decided it was important for our kids to know the true meaning of Memorial Day and Independence Day, letting them know what it means to be patriotic. After all, for most people it is a day of fun and barbecues, but to us it’s so much more.

I think it’s hard for my kids to really understand the true meaning of being patriotic because they are so young, but we have taught them a few simple things.

Flying the flag: The American flag is a big part of being Patriotic, and while we can’t fly one where we live we make sure our kids know what it means and the proper etiquette when holding or hanging a flag. We do have a flag across from us along with a POW/MIA flag in honor of those missing. The kids love looking at it.

Showing your spirit: You can buy a child’s flag shirt for just $5, it’s the perfect way for your child to show off their spirit.

Read a book about our country: My daughter came home one day from school and was teaching me about patriotism and our founding fathers, etc. It was really amazing how much she knew, all from a children’s book.

Showing self respect: This could be the most important thing to teach your children. For a child to learn what it really means to be patriotic they need to show respect to our culture and country. We would not have freedom without responsibility. Teaching your kids not to liter or damage their surroundings is a great way to show respect for themselves and the world around them.

There is also the option of taking them to a concert or a fireworks show, to show your child how patriotic others are.

My son decided that he wanted to show you his spirit by getting a star style teddy from Build A Bear Workshop and dress it up as a soldier.


Recycled Birdhouse

By Angela Roy of Mommy PR


This birdhouse was my husband’s idea. That man is a Martha Stewart sometimes. I had a box from The Honest Company, it was sort of long and skinny, on the smaller side. He took one look and decided that was going in the backyard for the birds.

What you will need:

  • A box
  • 2 kabob sticks
  • Popsicle sticks (optional)
  • Any craft extras for design (we used some pine and pine cone)
  • Glue Gun

Your total cost should be FREE.

Step 1:

Take a the box and make it into a small square. We did this by cutting the long box in half and combining the 2 sides together (one half inside the other) to make it shorter. Simply glue those 2 together.

Step 2:

Take part of the lid, fold it in half for a roof. Run a Kabob stick through the bottom of the roof, through the birdhouse to the other side. This will help secure it stays on, but as an extra caution glue it also. It should look like the letter A now. Leave the ends of the Kabobs like they are, the birds can use those to perch on, or cover them in Popsicle sticks like we did (optional).

Step 3:

This part is all optional. You can use the Popsicle sticks to line the birdhouse for decoration, or add pine cones, leaves, flowers, even glitter. Whatever you want. Then just find a place to hang it outside.

Now isn’t that the cutest recycled birdhouse?

Have a whirl at it and see what you come up with.


How to Build a Nut House

By Angela Roy of Mommy PR

I bet you never thought you would be reading how to build a nut house. With kids, it’s always something, right?

We have been feeding our backyard squirrels for a while now. It’s something that I remember doing with my late grandpa. He would be swarmed by the local wildlife just eating out of his hands. I would just sit in amazement as they acted like house pets to his every move. Ahh, the memories.

Anyway, I wanted my girls to build some “Nut Boxes”, just little containers to hold squirrel feed; nuts, corn, sunflower seeds, etc. (You can also make these boxes to hold trinkets, craft supplies, jewelry, or candy. They are very versatile.) I made this affordable for anyone, because all the items are from The Dollar Tree (you know, the place where everything under the sun is only $1).

You will need:

  • Popsicle Sticks- I bought 2 bags of 100 sticks ($2)
  • Glue- ($1)
  • Peanuts- ($1)
  • Leaves, Pine Cones- Free, just let the kids pick items from outside
  • Bird Topper- Optional ($1 for pack of 2)

Your total cost should only be $5

Step 1:

Lay two sticks down, about the length of the Popsicle sticks apart from each other, and glue 10 sticks across them to build a base.

Step 2:

Glue one stick along each side slightly overlapping each end atop the end of another stick. Continue until you reach the depth you want for your container.

Step 3:

While your box is drying, make another “base” as in Step 1. This will be your top. Let the kids really use their imagination on this part. Pine cones, birds, rocks, etc. Whatever you want as your top.

Step 4:

Allow to dry and then fill with your favorite foods for the animals or your other furry friends. This can be dog treats for Fido, nuts for the squirrels, or even candy for Grandpa.

An extra you can do; If you get the plain Popsicle sticks, you can let the kids paint something on the sides. Also, we are leery of leaving a full box outside. We learned that the birds and squirrels sure are stronger and more nosy than we thought. They ate both boxes and dumped them on the ground! (see photo below) We keep joking that soon we are going to see them so fat they will be dragging their bellies across the grass.

I hope you enjoy your craft time with the kids! What will your nut houses look like? Leave us a link to see them!


Homesick kids at summer camp

Megan Dunham of Half-Pint House

My husband and I met while working at a youth camp in Colorado. That year was my first. I was 19 and I spent it working in the camp kitchen. It was my husband’s third and he had just joined the camp staff in a full-time capacity. Fast forward three years and we were married and both involved as full-time camp staff. Between the two of us we experienced camp life in just about every capacity you can imagine – from kitchen crew to counselor to store manager to resident camp director we pretty much did everything there is to do at camp at some point during the 10 years we worked there.

One big thing we dealt with on a semi-regular basis was homesickness in our youngest campers. The camp we worked with started off with 2nd graders and went all the way up through high school. The camp we worked at was an overnight camp that lasted a full week. Kids were dropped off on Sunday afternoons and picked up again on Friday mornings.

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Meet Brandon , Father of 6

Brandon has been a bear for nearly 13 years, and he is also a father to 6 boys ranging in age from 5 – 17 years old! His kids help him keep Build-A-Bear Workshop the MOST fun place! When Brandon came to World Bearquarters, he worked on getting new stores up and running. He was an important part of the IT team and eventually began working more with our online and interactive projects, like Bearville.com™. You better believe his boys have helped him test games to make sure we offer pawsome stuff for kids of all ages!

Brandon Elliott's family

Brandon’s crew has also helped test the Build-A-Bear App. With a Dad in IT, his kids love all things techie. He became a bear when his oldest son was just 4 years old and it’s hard for his family to imagine life without BABW! It’s normal for his sons to hang out with him in the engineering lab at BQ or to help him cut foam board to make mock fixtures. They love trying out new gadgets and gizmos for us! Recently, Brandon’s kids have helped with our new digital sound station for Hear Me. The digital sound station has a touchscreen that allows Guests to choose from tons of songs and sounds, including ones that have been approved by Brandon’s boys.  At Build-A-Bear Workshop, we love to hear from real kids. They help us to evolve and remain innovative.

Besides helping their dad, ALL of his kids have celebrated at least one birthday with a Build-A-Party!

Brandon E., Director Virtual World & Interactive Opbearations
Jonah, 17; Ethan, 13; Isaac, 12; Carson, 10; Kyle, 7; and Caleb, 5.


How to make ice cream: a great Father’s Day treat!

Molly Saunders, Digital Bear

One of the things I remember best about hot summers is making ice cream with my dad. We use the old wooden ice cream maker that he grew up with. It makes the best ice cream I’ve ever tasted! Nothing ever comes close to that subtle, just-sweet-enough taste, especially after you’ve worked so hard to make it.

This is our family's ice cream barrel. When you store it, the dried wood pieces kind of rattle about. When you make the ice cream they expand and the only thing holding them together are the metal rings around the bucket. They expand to fit together perfectly and don't leak when you're making the ice cream!

I’ve adapted a version of the recipe he has used for more than 40 years so that you can make ice cream with your dad, or so that your children make ice cream with their dad for Father’s Day. It could become a really wonderful tradition for your family, too. I also like that making ice cream can double Continue reading


RSVP for our reunion!

We’re all about celebrations here at Build-A-Bear Workshop. This year we’re celebrating over 100 million furry friends made and we want to reunite with all our friends! This coming weekend, May 24-27, at all our stores in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom, we’re having a Friends Reunion. If you RSVP to the event and bring your furry friend you’ll get an exclusive Friends Count Tiny Tee for your friend. Remember to RSVP for each person you will be bringing, and don’t forget to bring your furry friend. We can’t wait to see you there!

If you’re a Fan on our Facebook page or if you follow us on Twitter, be sure to share your reunion pics with us!

RSVP to our Friends Count Reunion!


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