Oprah and Montessori

Oprah has done something very Montessori! She spent about 40 million for a South African school for girls who are poor, some orphaned, and pretty much undervalued by their society. I can’t believe it, but some people think Oprah spent too much on “these girls”!

When Montessori started her Casa dei Bambini a 100 years ago in Rome, she gave her students beautiful wooden learning materials, good food and upscale living. I am sure people probably criticized her too. These students were the poorest of the poor. They were from a powerless part of society, and their basic needs were not being met. Montessori saw the needs of these children and wanted to give them something better, something wonderful. Oprah’s vision for Africa seems to be as vivid as Montessori’s for helping children.

It’s true, education alone is not enough, interaction with beauty is life changing.
Montessori knew something very profound, children absorb information and value from their environment! Oprah’s investiment in this beautiful school will do the same for these girls. Her generosity will produce fruit for many years to come. Montessori’s work is still producing wonderful schools, home schools, and life changing ways of helping children.
I know that Oprah’s legacy will go beyond her lifetime too.

Shopping Free Zone

Could you buy nothing new for a year and live to tell about it? This group of 10 people acutally went on a year long shopping sabbatical. In fact, they liked it so much that they are going to do it for another year! Some the benefits were paying off credit card bills, getting reaquainted with the library, and appreciating what you have.
They used two online links to find free items-
freecycle.org and

There is actually a free cycle group of 3853 members in my little city-really amazing.
I like the garbage scout site-they show awesome items on the curb side destined for the landfill. What a great way to help people get the items they need!

Toddler Handbag

Toddlers do love baskets or boxes of treasures, but they really like handbags or purses filled with goodies to take out and put back in the bag. Find an handbag with snaps or a draw string that is easy to open. I put in an old wallet, gloves, cloth handkerchief, comb, mirror, scarf, etc.
My kids loved this activity. Just make sure everything is kids safe!