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Quandary- A New Ethical Game for Tweens and Teens

I have a daughter who is one of the legions of Minecraft fanatics. And I am one of the legions of moms whose eyes began to glaze over as she tries to explain to me what the heck she is doing. Normally I try to stay very on top of what she is doing on the computer, but while I know that Minecraft is a safe game for her to play, I just can’t bring myself to learn about pigs and zombies and underwater houses.

So I was super excited to learn to find an online game that is at her level, keeps her interest and sparks awesome conversation between the two of us. Gaming talk that doesn’t make my head explode? Yes please.

parents_play_screen

Quandary is like an online version of the “Choose Your Own Adventure” books I was obsessed with in my youth mixed with a little bit of “Survivor” (minus the backstabbing, nudity and eating of bugs). Your child is placed in the middle of a new civilization on a distant planet and begins to make decisions for the group which directly impact their ability to thrive. Immediately, they have to weigh how their decisions impact not only them but those around them. They are forced to get input from many of the other people who are placed in the civilization with them who provide lots of different opinions. Ultimately your child uses all the information they gather to make the best call.

Lily explains it best here (kind of. I think she was eating while she made it lol):

Quandary is an award-winning game that was designed to help your tweens and teens navigate ethical issues and challenges that will most definitely come up in their real life. I actually talked to several of Lily’s teachers about it because I think it would provide for some great material for classmates to discuss. They even have a teacher guide for anyone who wants to bring the game into their classroom.

There are three different scenarios to play and multiple choices and consequences in each game so your child can really play over and over with different outcomes. There are truly no “right” answers.

After Lily played a session we talked about what choices worked and didn’t work and why that happened. There are actually guided questions for parents on the website to help you make the most out of your discussion.

Quandary was developed by a team of experts across the fields of child development, social and emotional learning, and game design. It is available on your computer or tablet (in fact tablet play offers some extra features). Check it out with your teen or tween!!

This is a sponsored post with Quandary & The Mission List. All opinions are my own, as always. 

Halloween For The Whole Family on Netflix

Halloween Netflix

Can you believe Halloween is this week? I have barely even thought about costumes yet!! How on earth did we already get to the end of October? Sigh. Life is moving way too fast.

There is so much I love about Halloween. And while it doesn’t offer quite as many specials as Christmas there are still some classics to be had (It’s The Great Pumpkin anyone?) Netflix has a lot to offer you and your family this week to get in the Halloween spirit. from the super adorable to the super scary, check out these fun titles:

For the little kids: 

  1. Barney: Halloween Party
  2. Curious George: A Halloween Boo Fest
  3. A Magic Puppy
  4. Spooky Buddies
  5. Mickey’s House of Villans
  6. Dream Works Spooky Stories (all your favorites: Shrek and Monsters vs. Aliens)

For the bigger kids:

  1. A Monster in Paris
  2. Girl vs. Monster
  3. Fantastic Voyage
  4. Power Rangers Samurai: Party Monsters
  5. The Addams Family
  6. Clue

For the REALLY big kids (okay probably just adults):

  1. Silence of the Lambs (this movie absolutely terrifies me)
  2. The Blair Witch Project
  3. Carrie (a classic!!)
  4. Night of the Living Dead (the original zombie movie)
  5. Rosemary’s Baby (another classic must see)
  6. Children of the Corn

Do you like scary movies?

Disclosure: I am a Netflix Stream Team Ambassador. I received a free year subscription to Netflix and an iPad for my participation. No other compensation was received. All opinions are 100% my own.

15 Hearty Soups and Stews for Fall

I love it when soup is a full meal. And that is kind of my dinner plan for fall and winter. Soups, stews and chowders: lather, rinse, repeat. I headed over to Foodie and rounded up 15 of my favorites. Meal plan for the next few weeks- done.

Check out 15 Hearty Soups and Stews for Fall

by Jill Shepherd Anderson at Foodie.com

(pinable image below)

Hearty Soups and Stews

This post was sponsored by Foodie.com

What I’m Reading

I think we all need some funny in our life this week, don’t you?

10 Delicious Fall Apple Recipes

Apple Recipes

This time of year is my favorite for so many reasons, not the least of which is my love of fall foods. But while everyone is going gaga over all things pumpkin, I am over here eating apples by the fistful.

Last week I joined Michigan Apples in a tour of local orchards and processing plants. I learned so much about apples in Michigan, the third largest producers of apples in America. And then I came home and immediately pinned all things apples. Here are my favorites:

apple sandwich

1. Apple Sandwiches: I had a friend who used to make these in the morning on a group camping trip we took every year. They were perfection. The crunch of the apple and granola. The sweetness of the peanut butter and chocolate chips. Just perfection.

Crock-pot-Apple-Butter

2. Apple Butter: Growing up we had an apple tree in the backyard and my mom used to make apple butter. I love the texture better than jelly and just want to slather it on a warm piece of toast every morning. Anything in the crockpot is my happy place these days so I love this recipe from Practical Stewardship.

thumb_Easy-Apple-Breakfest-Cobbler3. Easy Apple Breakfast Cobbler: I am terrible at eating healthy breakfasts (or sometimes eating breakfast at all) because morning is such a frantic time getting the kids off to school. This recipe from Michigan Apples is an easy way to jazz up store bought (or homemade) granola and bring some apple-y goodness to your morning.

thumb_Candied Bacon Apple Salad Rev_web

4. Apple Salad with Candied Bacon and Goat Cheese: This salad from Michigan Apples pretty much had me at hello. Well actually at bacon. I love adding apples to salad for that nice sweet crunch. Throw in walnuts, bacon and goat cheese and I am in salad heaven.

thumb_squash soup

5. Michigan Apple and Butternut Squash Soup: I have mad deep love for butternut squash soup. It is seriously one of the things I most look forward to when I go out to eat in the fall and winter. I love that this recipe from Michigan Apples adds apples into the mix. I have a butternut squash in the fridge right now so this is going to get made real soon.

Kale-Apple-Bacon-Stuffed-Chicken-with-Maple-Dijon-Pan-Sauce-iowagirleats-01_mini

6. Kale, Apple, and Bacon Stuffed Chicken with Maple Mustard Pan Sauce: Nearly every fabulous flavor of fall is represented in this recipe. I get so tired of boring chicken breasts so I am very thankful Iowa Girl Eats has this recipe to change things up. It just seems like a warm and cozy dinner doesn’t it?

thumb_Roast-Chicken-042485-1k

7. Roasted Chicken with Apple Stuffing: I have a confession to make. I hate Thanksgiving food. Well maybe hate it too strong a word, but it definitely isn’t my favorite. This recipe from Michigan Apples might change my opinion. I am hopeful I can talk my family into celebrating with chicken and apples instead of turkey.

thumb_Sweet Potatoe Apple Rev_web

 

8. Apples Roasted with Root Vegetables: We get a lot of root vegetables in our CSA and for a long time I wasn’t sure what to do with them. Now I know the answer is. Roast them. Always. I love this recipe from Michigan Apples that adds apples to the roasting. And the vinaigrette on top sounds amazing too. This would be perfect at Thanksgiving as well.

apple nachos

9. Apple Nachos: Shouldn’t we throw one of my recipes in the mix. I love caramel apples, but they are complicated to make and even more complicated to eat. These are easy on all fronts. Well I guess they are a bit messy to eat, but so very worth it. They are a hit with kids as well.

apple-crisp-pizza

10. Apple Crisp Pizza: Apple crisp is seriously one of my most favorite desserts. I love how this takes that idea and turns it into a PIZZA!! I think I might take this recipe from The Girl Who Ate Everything and try it with a gluten-free pie crust. In fact I might have to try that real soon…..

After spending the day with the Michigan Apples, I am even more committed to making sure my apples are local. Every farmer we interacted with was so committed to sustainability and putting forth amazing products. These are not huge corporations, these are family farms that have been around for generations. So it is even more important to them to put out the best apples and to do so in a way that takes care of the environment around them. I really appreciate them hosting me and providing a meal and gift bag. My love for apples somehow got even deeper.