A Nature Mom

http://ANatureMom.com

Photographer, writer, outdoors enthusiast… playing outside, capturing images of natural beauty, and sharing our family adventures, both big and small, around the San Francisco Bay and beyond…

Linda is a winner of Top 25 Photographer Moms - 2013

Do you have any good tips for teaching children about photography?

Provide the child with a digital camera made for kids (one that can endure being dropped), and let the child play with it. Show them that they can take photos of little things close up, as well as wide-ranging landscape photos. It's fun to see what they come up with.

Where is your favorite place to take photographs?

Anywhere outdoors. I love to capture images of children playing, especially in nature. Kids hate sitting for posed photos!

What's a creative tip for taking good photographs of children?

Take photos when the child doesn't know you're doing it. Be stealthy. Zoom in and capture them up close. You'll capture the true essence of the child.

Can you recommend a great toy that costs less than $10? Please share a link to a photo.

Linda Bernardi

My son LOVED the Toysmith 4M Dig a Dino Tyrannosaurus Rex Skeleton Excavation Kit. It's currently $9.65 through Amazon. My little paleontologist is crazy for these kits, and now wants the Mammoth kit! After we excavate them, we get more use out of the "fossils" by hiding them in the dirt in the backyard, and finding the skeletons again and again and again.
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Have you found a terrific printable toy? Share the link, and let us know what ages it's best for.

Linda Bernardi

Kids love to make and play with paper airplanes! Find free printables here at http://www.funpaperairplanes.com/ . They offer beginner, intermediate, advanced, and novelty levels, so you can choose the right level for your child, anywhere from age three and up.
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How did you feel dropping off your child on the first day of school? Please share a link to a picture if you have one!

Linda Bernardi

I dropped my son off for his first day of kindergarten only an hour ago. I feel sad. But so proud of my boy, too. Our school offers a "Boo Hoo or Woo Hoo Coffee Event" for parents after drop off. For me, however, this is something I have to process alone, not in the company of others. Yes, deep sadness is what I feel right now. My little boy is growing up...
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What's one of the worst messes your child has made? Please share a link to a photo if you have one.

Linda Bernardi

My son is a strangely clean child. He cleans up his toys after himself. He doesn't spill food on his clothes. Even when we play outside (which we do daily... I encourage interaction with dirt and mud... it's healthy for kids!), he somehow confines his messiness to his hands. This finger painting photo is a great example...
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What's your favorite toddler bedtime book?

Linda Bernardi

With so many wonderful books out there, how to choose just one? I guess it would have to be Snuggle Puppy: A Little Lovesong by Sandra Boynton. My son had me read (and sing) this book to him over and over and over. He'd snuggle in while I read it to him and couldn't wait to receive the kisses. What a loving way to end a day.
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What's a great toy for outdoor play that costs less than $15? Please share a photo or link if you have one.

Linda Bernardi

Sticks, rocks, and water... simple, fun, free! A great toy to add to this would be a magnifying glass. Melissa and Doug make some cute ones for under $10.00.
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