Podcast Episode One: How to be a good friend

What a great first episode. Samantha and I had a blast recording it. And, dang our equipment made a HUGE difference in the sound quality. We definitely have a steep learning curve in the podcast world, but we are proud of our first efforts.

Listeners can learn more about Friends TALK, what TALK stands for, and some books to reinforce how to be a good friend. Good times. Check back next week for Episode Two: What to do with your worries. A serious issue for young girls these days.

The Friends TALK Podcast Team,

Kristan & Samantha


final lessons of 2016

We had a blast at our last lessons this week.

The girls at Briar Chapel donated 400lbs of food to TABLE. And my gals at Glenwood donated 225 cans to the Glenwood Food Pantry during the school year. What amazing girls. I hope giving back was as meaningful to them as it was for me.

Next up, our healthy snack. Because our book reading was Rainbow Fish (what a great message of friendship) we made schools of fish with orange slices, pretzel knots and raisins.

Then outside for some fun water games. I did get lots of wet hugs before we departed for the last time this year. Made my week. Check out some pics of our fun.

test run with podcasting

Aidan was sick and stayed home from school today. Samantha asked to do the same, and since today was fields games day at school, I agreed to let her play hookie because I also had a motive for her being home for the day…. we could do a test run for our first Friends TALK podcast!

We headed out to our “studio” (AKA the workshop). Samantha made us this sign.


Check out our set up. Pretty fancy, huh?

Now for what we learned during our test run:

  1. Don’t be too scripted. We both felt like parts of our test run sounded a bit practiced. But, we are also new at this and feel the need for the script so we don’t mess up. I am thinking that this will be like programming with the girls. Once we get more comfortable with this format, it will feel more natural.
  2. Our first run was super short. Only 13 mins. The goal was 30 minutes.
  3. The technical parts were hard, but not that hard. Adding music to the intro and outro was a bit of a challenge, but after a quick Google search I figured it out. Next, saving the file in a format to share on our blog… and eventually iTunes. I had to ask Chris from Dads on Doody for help with this one.
  4. We still need our equipment. I was lucky to have musical folks to consult for advice. Aidan’s guitar teacher recommended a microphone with USB input and headphones that I purchased from good ol’ amazon.com
  5. Super grateful for music from Danny Gotham and Logo design from High Street Design. This helps us start off better than most podcasts.

We will figure this all out. And, Samantha and I had a BLAST with our test podcast. What could be better than sitting down with your daughter talking about how to be a good friend? I cannot think of a better way to spend my Monday.


the summer project

Next week will be my last week at Briar Chapel and Glenwood Elementary. This, along with the fact that Samantha has been super bummed she has not been able to participate this month since I am not at Willow Oak, has gotten me thinking about what to do in the summer months with Friends TALK.  This has been such a big connection for us.

Then today, the idea came to me (things like this happen at the strangest times for me). What if we hosted a Friends TALK summer podcast? Mother and daughter having weekly talks about issues facing tween girls. Sounds super awesome, right? Would you listen? Even if no one listens, I think Samantha and I would have fun chatting and making jokes (we would at least laugh at ourselves…because we think we are funny).

I am a HUGE fan of podcasts, so I am hoping I can figure it all out. I have already reached out to my pals from Dads on Doody for tips, but this feels like a good direction for the summer. A way to keep Friends TALK going in the summer months and connect with my daughter. A win/win in my book.

So, the internet research begins. We would definitely do a better job than this little lady, right?



Time to craft!

The girls made Friends TALK tote bags this week. They giggled with excitement when they saw paint supplies out when they arrived. While the paint dried on the totes, we made giraffes from bananas, apricots and raisins. Why? Because our book reading this week was Giraffes Can’t Dance. Gerald’s friends make fun of his attempts at dancing. Then a cricket gives him an important message “when you are different, you just need a different song.”
What a great message for the girls to hear!

It is hard to believe that next week will be our last lessons of the school year at Briar Chapel and Glenwood. We have had so much fun.

Celebrating differences

The book reading this week was Stand Tall Molly Lou Melon. Molly is different and is reminded by her grandmother to celebrate her differences. Molly is good about this until she moves to a new town and a boy makes fun of her differences. Instead of being embarrassed, Molly uses her differences to her advantage and makes a lot of new friends. A nice discussion followed… what a boring world it would be if we were all exactly the same.

Keeping with Molly’s name, we made melon people with watermelon, cookie cutters and pretzel sticks.


Next up, another round of the every popular Laundry Basketball game.


Once everyone was all sweaty from this game, we played Sticky Stack (think stack as many sweet tarts as you can in 60 secs). Good times.