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WHAT'S YOUR PICK THIS WEEKEND?

Yippee! THE SUMMER BOOK: A GUIDE TO HOUSTON DAY CAMPS AND CLASSES FOR KIDS AND TEENS is out in some stores! You can find it NOW at Blue Willow Bookshop; Brazos Bookstore; British Isles; Children's Museum of Houston; Christ Church Cathedral (downtown); Fundamentally Toys; Kaboom Books (Heights); The Motherhood Center; and the River Oaks Bookstore. And I’m pleased to announce my newest retailer: Cactus Music, which also has it in stock. I’ve been going to that store since it was Cactus Records and Tapes (raise your hand if you remember that!) and it’s been fun to see it evolve and continue to thrive as Houston’s first indie music store. If you haven’t been to their new location, check them out: they’re doing a lot of events for families and stock some of the best kid stuff for miles around. If you’d rather get THE SUMMER BOOK delivered to your doorstep, hop online and order now and we’ll send it out in a jiffy. And if you’d like to hear tonza ideas for summer family fun, hire me to present my talk “Sounds Like a Summer Plan,” in which I give audiences great ideas on how to survive and thrive in hot Houston summers and I also bring brochures from organizations all over town. If you’re looking for more enrichment, I present talks and workshops on a variety of other topics, including how to create a personal mission statement and daily practices for a healthy life. Click here for more details.

Going green is in but I think it’s starting to become a lifestyle for many people and is now more than just a trend. I say this because everywhere I turn, there are events, groups, and people all dedicated to taking care of our planet and Houston seems to be at the forefront of this paradigm shift in my opinion (others think so too – check out this article about Houston ranking 16th as one of the nation’s top green cities). I went to a fabulous talk last week at Rothko Chapel about eating as a spiritual act by Dr. Norman Wirzba and it made me pause. As a busy mom of two boys who need to get here, there, and everywhere, I want to make our mealtimes more sacred (hey, I can have goals, right?!). Four suggestions Dr. Wirzba gave us were: 1) grow your own food, 2) get involved in the food economy, 3) share food as a community ("companion" literally means "share bread"), and 4) say grace/meditate before every meal. I believe in everyday activism, meaning that it’s important to start where you are and do what you can every day to make the world a better place. So if nothing else, how about we all slow down and bless our food before we dig in? Want to do more? Check out below for some suggestions for other ways to be activist parents. It often only takes a minute to make a big change. As my favorite anthropologist Margaret Mead said: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”

It’s Spring Break this week and because I need a break too, this week’s GISH PICKS is short and sweet. If you’re looking for more ideas, check out my Family Resources page which has a list of Houston area attractions and family-friendly restaurants. In the cultural world, you can get your tickets now for the very green and very important Mountainfilm in Telluride on Tour in Houston that will be at Rice Media Center on the evenings of Friday, March 30 and Saturday, March 31. FotoFest® opens this Friday, March 16 and runs through April 29 (a departure from years past when it was only in March) -- it’s the first international Biennial of Photography and Photo-related Art in the United States. And the French Cultures Festival continues all month long with events sponsored by the French Alliance and other groups; coming up next weekend (March 23-25) is "Five Funny French Films" at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Won’t it be fun to laugh?!

So what’s YOUR pick this weekend? Get out there and do it and GO.FIND.FUN! AND, enjoy the rest of your Spring Break!!!

Events for the Weekend of March 16, 2012


Spring Break

PUT SOME SPRING IN YOUR BREAK!

It’s Spring Break and what can you do? Never fear as there are a lot of places to go, be, do. Here’s a partial list of places to enjoy. The weather is great, so get out there and have fun!


Eating Healthy Meals

GET INVOLVED.

It sometimes seems like others are in charge of our children’s minds and bodies, but we as parents can take a stand and put the power back in our hands and in the hands of our kids! As I’ve been researching ways to improve my family’s relationship with food, I connected with an interesting project that started in Berkeley, California, the Lunch Love Community project. It's a series of short videos available online focusing on the importance of feeding our children nutritional school lunches and the nationwide movement that began with the Berkeley school lunch program. It’s great inspiration for being an everyday activist! Closer to home, one of my favorite foodie activists (and one that has gotten national attention, including from Jamie Oliver, the leader of his Food Revolution that focuses on changing school lunches) is smart Houston mom Bettina Siegel, whose blog, The Lunch Tray, is currently taking on the nasty “pink slime” that’s been found on our kids’ meat in school (don’t know about it? Read more and sign Bettina’s petition here). Houston mom Gracie Cavnar is also leading the fight for healthy eating by kids with her organization Recipe for Success, whose mission is to combat childhood obesity by changing the way our children understand, appreciate and eat their food. They’re hosting a special "Eat this!" Summer Camp which is a perfect way to get their message directly to those that need it the most: our kids. And coming soon to Houston is the new film, "Forks Over Knives" which is scheduled to open here in May. It’s a film about how changing our food choices can literally save lives. If you’re overwhelmed by all this, keep it simple: start by encouraging your kids to eat 5 fresh fruits and veggies a day – remember, starting small and doing what you can with your life the way it is today is the best way to make big changes.

Another way to get involved is to connect with Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood, a national coalition of mostly parents who are health care professionals, educators, advocacy groups, parents, and individuals who care about children’s exposure to advertising. CCFC is the only national organization devoted to limiting the impact of commercial culture on children. CCFC’s staff and Steering Committee are activists, authors, and leading experts on the impact of media and marketing on children. They’ve got several action notices and petitions to sign on their website so it’s easy to get started.

I hope this gives you a good start with changing yours and your children’s lives. Being an activist today with social media has never been so easy!


GISH PICKS is a free weekly email in which I highlight family-oriented cultural events, products or services. Please note that I "highlight" events, but I don't know if they are appropriate for your particular children, so choose wisely based on age, maturity and interests. I know many of you go to events based on GISH PICKS recommendations; PLEASE remember to tell the organization that you are there because of us. Word-of-mouth like yours helps our business to grow. In the same spirit, please also feel free to share GISH PICKS with friends and families.

Do you have something you would like to promote on Gish Picks? You can promote family-friendly events, products or services to Houstonians all over the city and the surrounding area who are active parents, involved citizens and great shoppers. We love doing this community service and want to keep it free for our readers but in order to justify the hours spent researching, writing and designing this newsletter, we need advertising support. If you'd like to learn more, please click below.

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The purpose of GISH PICKS is to help parents become aware of all the fun things they can do with their children in Houston and the surrounding area, so GO FIND FUN! Please do give me feedback and ideas, as you are out there in the trenches also looking for interesting things for your family and I want to hear what you find.

If you are having trouble getting to a website listed here, try hitting the "Ctrl" button and left-clicking on the web address, which should make it "live".


For more about my personal, business, and family enrichment company, Gish Creative, and the services we offer, please click here. You are on this list because I thought this e-newsletter would be helpful to you or because you signed up for it. Please feel free to tell your friends to subscribe by clicking here.
My goal is to serve as an information resource for Houston parents through my various endeavors, including:

  • GISH PICKS, which is online and emailed out to thousands of parents and caregivers;

  • THE SUMMER BOOK®: A GUIDE TO HOUSTON DAY CAMPS AND CLASSES FOR KIDS AND TEENS which comes out annually in March and is sold at bookstores all over Houston, including Barnes and Noble; and

  • OTHER SERVICES including SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS, INTERACTIVE WORKSHOPS, PRIVATE CONSULTATIONS, and ART PROGRAMS that cover topics such as summertime fun, passion-finding (for adults, children and families), marketing, historic preservation, art classes, and activism. All of these services can be tailored for any audience and budget.
visit thesummerbook.com


Sarah Gish
Gish Creative
1940-A Fountainview, PMB 116
Houston, Texas 77057
phone/fax: 713.482.7065

GISH AT THE MOVIES
GISH PICKS: A GUIDE TO CULTURAL ACTIVITIES FOR FAMILIES
THE SUMMER BOOK: A GUIDE TO HOUSTON DAY CAMPS AND CLASSES FOR KIDS AND TEENS
HOUSTON: OUR ROOTS ARE STRONG

© 2012 Sarah Gish

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