May 3, 2012

ABC Photobooks, The Gift That Keeps Giving

Mother's Day is around the corner.  We feel it's our mommy obligation to let you know about something you should be wishing for with enough time to hint to your significant other that this would make a great gift to your family.

abc photobooks abcs of summer abc photo books reviewSeveral of our Mommy Testers have toddlers and school age children. It's a constant struggle to come up with new, interesting activities to keep your family active and entertained.  Even if you live in a city that has amazing amenities and attractions it's pretty easy to fall into a rut of going to the same handful of places and watching them lose their splendor.

We have Mommy Testers across the country and even a couple of international mommies but as you may know we are based out of San Diego.  While perusing the shelves of one of our favorite local toy boutiques - Geppettos we came across ABC Photobooks and immediately fell in love.

Like most amazing ideas ABC Photo Books are based on a simple concept - recreate the alphabet through a variety of experiences and record it all in photos.

abc photobooks abcs of summer abc photo books reviewMom inventor and San Diego native Michelle Mathis was trying to find a creative way to get her own children excited about learning the alphabet by associating the letters with places and experiences when she came up with her first ABC Photobook. Her hope is to give families a way to unplug, get out of the house and try some new things while adding an educational twist.

Her books all start with an idea list that gives you oodles of suggestions for each letter to get you going.  For example in the ABC's of Summer under the letter Z it lists: zebra, zinnia, zip line and many more.  We hope we get to fulfill the zip line one this summer! Mathis also included an additional challenge of doing 1 charitable activity, 1 educational activity and 1 activity to learn a new skill.  We can't wait to fulfill all of these!

After the idea list there are pages for every letter of the alphabet that have a pocket to slip a printed photo in and a coordinating page with a giant letter and a line to write the location, object or action that you used to fulfill that letter. 

abc photobooks abcs of summer abc photo books reviewSo far we have completed our A page at the airport (smiling flight crew included!), our D page with a daddy date, our G page helping a neighbor plant their garden and our J page visiting the varieties of jelly fish at our local aquarium.

You get the idea.  These books are a wonderful way to build a book of memories over the course of a few weeks or months that you and your children will treasure for years to come while simultaneously ending the weekend question of what to do.   

ABC Photobooks also remind us as parents in this very digitized world to take the time to actually print our pictures and allow our kids to access them and review them as they please, unplugged....just like we did as kids.  

Right now the 2 books available are The ABC's of Summer and The ABC's of San Diego.  Don't worry, there are plenty more on the way including The ABC's of Food (bye-bye picky eater!) The ABC's of National Parks and The ABC's of The Zoo. 

At $15.95 retail we think they are a bargain for the hours of fun you will get out of them.  Especially since they are printed in the USA with soy based inks.

If you are a San Diego local you can purchase them at Geppettos, there are 8 spread around the county.    Otherwise you can find them on Michelle's website here:  Purchase ABC Photobooks
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