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Happy December! 

December is a month filled with joy, laughter, and family togetherness. We have some tips to make the most of this holiday season, including strategies to curb cabin fever and create new family traditions for next to nothing. 

It's Parents' Choice Awards time, please take a few minutes to vote so together, we can recognize the businesses in Calgary that go above and beyond for our families. Our new issue is out, it's on stands everywhere and you'll find a link to our digital edition below.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from all of us at Calgary's Child

It's Here! - Our November/December 2016 Issue
Health & Family Life, Plus Winter Fun, and More! 

This issue features our Healthy Living Guide, Winter Fun & Getaway Guide, plus our Home School 101 Guide. It also includes events, our annual 'Wish List' Holiday Gift Guide, suggestions to celebrate the season in style, and our annual Parents' Choice Awards ballot.

Find it on stands and online now! Just click on the cover at

The 2017 Parents' Choice Awards Ballot is Here! 

Where is the best place to take the kids on a crummy day?
Who has the best swimming pool?
Where can you find the best kids' clothes?  

We want to know who your favorites are in these and other family-friendly categories!

Vote online now for your favorites, and you could WIN a one-night stay at the Delta Lodge at Kananaskis! 
Results will be published in our Mar-April 2017 Issue.

*Suggestions in the drop-down boxes were compiled from the top results of last year's ballot. These are suggestions only; feel free to enter your favorite if it's not there.

*To ensure our results are as accurate as possible and to recognize those businesses that go above and beyond, please give an answer in every category. If a category doesn't apply to you, then you can answer 'Don't Know.' *Limit one entry per IP address.

Vote Now! 
Written by Ellen Percival, Publisher; Photo:

Christmas is a magical time of year and for many young children, visiting Santa is a highlight. Chances are by now they've made their list and checked it twice and have begun the "when can I see Santa?" chant. However, no matter how excited and prepared your child is, parents should be prepared for almost anything when visiting Santa.
Written by Tanya Koob; Photo: Courtesy of Tanya Koob 

It's always fun to visit someplace new as a family, discover a new favorite trail, and perhaps even try out a new sport. And while the summertime may seem like the best time to go 'exploring,' personally, my family likes to visit new places in the wintertime. Summer's such a short season and tends to get filled up with revisiting our favorite parks and campgrounds. Winter, on the other hand, at least in Alberta, is long and tends to drag on for five or more months, so it's the perfect time to come up with creative destinations to explore, then take a trip and try something new.
Written by Dr. Caron Goode; Photo:

For families who are facing tough times, the end of the year holidays may become a source of stress, guilt, and worry. But getting creative during these tough times and coming up with alternative ways to celebrate to share time and give gifts (without breaking the bank) brings the joy of the holiday season back to the forefront.

To celebrate the holidays on a shoestring budget, put these top 10 tips to the test:
1. Start with comfort foods created with a dose of love. I remember the smell of buttery blueberry muffins on Christmas morning that our neighbor provided. She put her heart into cooking, and you can do the same with a few shortcuts for time. Gift muffins, breads, or cookies.

Got Your Wish List Ready?

Santa Claus can be found all over the Calgary area leading up to Christmas - he's a busy guy! If you want to find him for a photo or to deliver your Christmas Wish List, we've got a list of the best places to go! 

Lots of these great Santa spots have crafts, movies, and cookies available, but many of them book up very fast! Make sure you have your perfect Santa visit all planned out ahead of time!

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Written by Cheryl Johnson, M.Ed., and Jan Pierce, M.Ed.; Photo:

It's no secret that today's fast-paced lifestyle leaves many of us feeling as if we're running on a never-ending treadmill. We're pressured to over-schedule, overdo, and overspend. It takes a conscious effort to simplify and allow time for quiet and reflection in our adult lives.  N o wonder our children mirror our overly-busy lives, often to their emotional detriment. 

Their days may be too full of scheduled activities to allow time for healthy, unstructured play, and play is the childhood equivalent of work; it needs to happen. There's power in your child's unstructured, unplugged, creative play.

Written by Meagan Ruffing; Photo:

No doubt, reading with your kids is a great activity at any time of year. But for those who dwell in northern climes, the combination of a snuggly blanket, a cup of cocoa, and a good book is often pure magic. 

Kelly Harrison, bookstore owner and mother of two teens says, "Winter provides a good excuse for families to snuggle up close and read together. The days get dark early, and kids will often curl up and read the afternoon away." 

So between stints of sledding, skating, and throwing snowballs, settle into your sofa cushions and share a story. Here are some suggestions with wintry appeal.

Written by Lara Krupicka; Photo:

My roller-coaster-fearing daughter Katherine has flown in a Breezy (an experimental open-air airplane). My eldest daughter Bethany overcame an aversion to rodents and other pests while working her dream job at a summer camp. And I jumped from a three-storey-high platform (zip lining) in spite of an intense fear of heights. All of these happened in the pursuit of our bucket list goals.

 Enter to Win a Bricks 4 Kidz Winter Holiday Camp!

Treat your child (aged 5 to 12) to a holiday winter camp this season! Bricks 4 Kidz is offering 3 winter holiday camps on December 19 to 23, December 26 to 28, and January 2 to 6.  For camp pricing, more information, and to register your child for one of these fantastic holiday camps today, visit the website.

Everything is Awesome! Camp
Bricks 4 Kidz will bring this popular movie to life using traditional bricks, character figure models, motorized technic machines, and mosaic art projects! Kids will build their way through the adventure (Emmet style!) with daily themes including construction, super heroes, space, cities, master builder techniques, and more! Creative building time, games, crafts, and daily take-homes add to the fun! This camp runs from January 2 to 6, 2017, 9am to Noon, and includes free lunchtime supervision. 

For your chance to win 1 spot for your youngster in this morning camp, enter here (contest code: Morning). Entry deadline is Wednesday, December 14, 2016. 

Winter Fun! Camp
Don't get left out in the cold! Bring the winter fun indoors with interactive Bricks 4 Kidz models of some popular winter activities from the hair-raising thrill of the luge to a more relaxing pace of the horse and sleigh. Your child will build an all-business snowplow and an all-fun snow mobile. And a winter theme wouldn't be complete without ice hockey and skiing! Character figure sculptures and Mosaic models will add to the fun! Creative building time, crafts, games, and a small daily take-home included.  This camp runs from January 2 to 6, 2017, 1 to 4pm, and includes free lunchtime supervision. 

For your chance to win 1 spot for your youngster in this afternoon camp, enter here (contest code: Afternoon). Entry deadline is Wednesday, December 14, 2016. 

Enter to Win a Family Pack of 4 Tickets to Nickelodeon's Bubble Guppies Live! Ready to Rock! 

Dive into a bubbly world of learning and laughter with Nickelodeon's Bubble Guppies Live! Ready to Rock. Koba Entertainment is making a splash with its theatrical tour starring the lovable guppy friends! Put on your water-wings and jump into a swimsational musical adventure! The Bubble Guppies are getting ready to rock n' roll with some totally fin-tastic tunes, but when a special band member goes missing, the show can't go on! With a little help from Mr. Grouper and giggly little fish, Molly, Gil, and the whole gang embark on an adventure as they search every corner of their underwater world for their missing friend! Featuring rockin' music, comedic high jinks, and audience participation, the Bubble Guppies will leave no stone unturned and no bubble left un-popped in order to get the show on the road. 
For more information about the tour and to purchase tickets, visit the website

For your chance to win a family pack of 4 tickets to Nickelodeon's Bubble Guppies Live! Ready to Rock show in Calgary on February 4, 1pm, enter here (contest code: Bubble Guppies). Entry deadline is Monday, January 9, 2017.  

Enter to Win 4 Family Passes to InjaNation Calgary! 

Historically, Ninjas often trained together in order to better meet a common goal. Everyone has their own unique strengths but together, we can reach greater heights. InjaNation is always working to foster teamwork in everything they do. Through community involvement and athletic ambassadors, they hope to inspire fun and fitness for all ages and skill levels. The team at InjaNation are trained to help all of their guests try new obstacles and push their fitness boundaries in a fun, safe way. Whether you're looking for a new activity for your family or pursuing goals in obstacle course racing, InjaNation has something for everyone! To finally release the inner ninja in you, visit the website.  

For your chance to win 4 family passes to InjaNation Calgary, enter here (contest code: Ninja). Entry deadline is Monday, January 9, 2017. 

Enter to Win 4 Family Passes to Gasoline Alley Museum at Heritage Park! 

Gasoline Alley Museum is a celebration of industrial design illuminated by a storyline that follows the far-reaching social changes that resulted from the introduction and popularization of the automobile. The museum contains thousands of automobile memorabilia items, most dating from before the Second World War. Local businessman, Ron Carey, generously donated the items to Heritage Park so that they could be put on display for public enjoyment, while being properly maintained. The artifacts displayed at the museum date from the turn of the 20th century to the 1950s and include vintage vehicles, unique gasoline pumps and many products and signage from a host of petroleum companies! For more information and to discover all of Heritage Park's exciting Attractions & Exhibits, visit the website

For your chance to win 4 family passes to the Gasoline Alley Museum at Heritage Park, enter here (contest code: Heritage Park). Entry deadline is Monday, January 9, 2017.

Free Live Webinar - "Surviving Morning Madness and Afternoon Arsenic Hour:
Getting Out the Door Without Meltdowns!"

December 15, 8 to 9pm MDTSurviving Morning Madness and Afternoon Arsenic Hour: Getting Out the Door Without Meltdowns! Brought to you by Professional Parenting Canada and Calgary's Child Magazine Register today!

November 25 to January 8 (excluding December 25), 6 to 9pm;  Experience over 1.5 million lights, 200 displays, crackling fire pits, steamy hot chocolate, and four fun-filled activity zones (with many new additions!), transforming the Zoo into a magical winter wonderland. 

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit the website.

For parenting tips and updates from the experts, don't miss our Calgary's Child Magazine segment on the Global Morning News show on Mondays!

Each segment has a different guest and topic, from Family Fun to Health & Safety.

To find out who's on next, look down the left column of our Calendar!
Want to know what's up in Calgary?
No matter the age, stage, or size of your family, we can find you something to do! 
Check out Calgary's best events calendar for families at!
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