Tulsa Children’s Museum – Creating Playful Family Connections

dad and child at tulsa children's museum

Looking for a playful, connecting family activity? Try a Children’s Museum. Tulsa has it’s very own museum for families with young children to middle school age children. Tulsa Children’s Museum Discovery Lab has interactive exhibits for active play and engagement. The three main current exhibits are:

Tulsa Tape & Tunnels – a 30 foot slide and bridge made from packing tape

child on packing tape slide at tcm

Make Shop – creating activities that explore sound, electricity, robots, etc. These activities change weekly.

make-shop at tcm

boys make shop at tcm

Toddler Area – active play and exploration for babies and toddlers / young children.

toddler area at TCM

Tulsa Children’s Museum Discovery Lab

560 North Maybelle, Tulsa OK  (in Owen Park, northwest of downtown)

Monday – Saturday     9:30 am – 5:00 pm

Sundays     11:30 am – 5:00 pm

$5.00 Admission ( Under 2 Free)

Contact Number: 918-295-8144

Website: www.tulsachildrensmuseum.org

The museum exhibits are changed out 2-3 times a year. There are three main areas in one large room.  In addition, classes are offered for children 1st grade – 6th grade. Check out their website for current listings. Spring break classes are currently listed.

Tulsa Children’s Museum promotes the program STEM, which promotes Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. And is partnered with the RECESS program which provides Health & Wellness Programs.

This is a wonderful Tulsa treasure and has such wonderful opportunities to play and connect with each other as a family; plus learn and grow. It is all win – win. So if you have not discovered this Tulsa gem, give it a try!  Your children will love you for it.

Note: If you do not live in Tulsa, check out your own community for a Children’s Museum.

“Weekly Jar of Blessings” to Remind of All That is GOOD in Our Relationship

Want to focus on the good in your relationship? It is so easy to get stuck in the “negative”. So for many of us finding concrete ways to do this is helpful. The more we focus on the GOOD the more we get of it. It is the basic law of attraction. 

weekly blessing jar

One activity that you might consider is to create a Weekly Jar of Blessings. This can be used as a Couple or as a Parent / Child Activity. I would think that mid elementary children could participate easily in this activity.

1. Use a pretty jar or container to place what you feel are your “relationship blessings” as they occur during the week.

2. Simply write down on a piece of paper what you appreciate that your spouse or partner (or child) has done that you feel like is a blessing  (this may be phrased as a compliment or acknowledgment of something that you appreciated)

OR write down something you have done together that  you enjoyed.

Note:  Do this as it occurs each day or as soon as you can so you can remember these special things you are doing for each other or have chosen to do together to keep your relationship strong and healthy.

Some examples of Appreciation:

FOR COUPLES “Thank you _____________ for taking time to make me my favorite Italian meal. It hit the spot and was comforting on what was otherwise a hard day.” OR “Thank you _________________ for listening to me when I was so upset about the phone call from the school.” 

FOR PARENTS AND CHILDREN OR TEENS “Thank you _________ for helping to clean the house today. It was such a big help.” Dad  OR “Thank you ____________ for taking time to tell me about what was going on at school today. I love to hear about what your day is like.” Mom

Some examples of Acknowledging What You are Doing as a COUPLE  or PARENT / CHILD OR TEEN to Stay Connected:

FOR COUPLES ” ___________ I was so excited we took the time to have a date night tonight. These times out mean a lot to me.” OR “____________I love how we cooked our supper together tonight. It gave us extra time to talk and be with each other.” OR “___________Having some grownup talk after the kids were in bed last night felt so nice.”

FOR PARENTS AND CHILDREN OR TEENS ” ___________, I am so glad we all went to the park today. It was so much fun hanging out together. Mom”  OR ” ______________, I love reading books with you before we go to bed at night.” Dad

Note: Signing and dating your notes can add a layer of meaningfulness if you want to look back at your notes later.

3. Place your Weekly Jar of Blessings in a Prominent Place. This can be a nice reminder that GOOD things are happening!

4. Take time at the end of the week to take a look together at what you did that mattered and what each of you appreciated about the other. If you are doing a parent / child or family jar of blessings, you will want to make sure you have been fairly even as to your compliments or comments to the different children in your family.

5. Empty your jar of weekly blessings into a larger container or box, etc that will hold a large amount (maybe for the year or whatever you feel makes sense) and then store these away. You can label your box with  a label “Weekly Blessings – February 2014 to February 2015”.

6. Then start your weekly blessing jar again for the next week.

This is a lovely way to really appreciate each other and find out what helps you to stay connected. When we write something it seems to create a deeper memory and have a more lasting effect. So even though this may mean a bit of effort it is so worth it!

You may find your own version of this Weekly Jar of Blessings. Do what fits for you. It may mean an abbreviated version of what is outlined above.  Here are to many voiced words of appreciation and acknowledgments of all the GOOD that is going on in your relationship.

Note: I would like to give credit to Jennifer Grace for the foundation idea of using a jar to collect good feelings.

Jenks Family Indoor Swim, Jenks Planetarium Shows . . . Fun for All in the Tulsa Area

Looking for some “Family Fun”. Check out Jenks OK Community Ed Programs. Two fun programs that I would like to highlight here are their Family Fun Swim and the Jenks Planetarium Shows. You do not have to live in Jenks, OK to attend their community education events. You do have to pay 1% more than a Jenks school resident, but the fees are so very reasonable that this really does not add up to much. So check it out.



I was so pleased to hear that the Jenks Aquatic Center is available to the public at scheduled times. This pool is on the Jenks High School Campus. One of the special programs is the Family Fun Swim. This is an open swim for parents and their children. Minimum pool depth is 3.5 feet and temp is 82-84 degrees. This is an indoor pool.  Lap lanes are available in the Competition Pool. Times available for swimming are: Fridays 6:00-7:30 pm and Saturdays 10:00 am – 2:00 pm. Fees are $5. per sessopm for Jenks adult school district residents and $5.25 for non Jenks school district residents adults and then  $3.00 for children who are Jenks school district residents and $3.15 for children who are non Jenks school district residents. Sign up for this program is through Jenks Community Ed.

jenks planetarium


The Jenks Planetarium is housed in the new Math and Science Building on the Jenks Central Campus. This planetarium is on the 3rd floor. It is 50 foot, 120 seat SciDome high-definition planetarium. When I called to check on ages for this new facility I was told it is for all ages – children, teens and adults. They host regular shows. Some of the upcoming shows are:

The Winter Sky (Ages 8 and up) 2-6-14, Thursday,  8:00 – 9:00 pm $5.00

Spaceship T.A.T.U.M (Ages 3 and up) 2-13-14, Thursday, 7:00 – 8:00 pm  $5.00

Astrology : A Story of You (Ages 14 and up) 2-27-14, Thursday,  7:00 -8:00 pm  $5.00

The Sistine Chapel (Ages 14 and up) 3-25-14, Tuesday, 7:00 – 8:00 pm  $5.00 

Earth, Moon and Sun (Ages 3 and up) 3-27-14, Thursday, 7:00 – 8:00 pm $5.00

How to Use My Telescope (Ages 8 and up) 4–3-14, Thursday, 8:00 – 9:00 pm  $5.00

Animals of the Sky (Ages 3 and up) 4-10-14, Thursday, 7:00 – 8:00 pm  $5.00

Oasis in Space (Ages 14 and up) 4-24-14, Thursday, 7:00 – 8:00 pm  $5.00

Spaceship T.A.T.U.M. (Ages 3 and up) 5-1-14, Thursday, 7:00 – 8:00  pm  $5.00

The Spring Sky (Ages 8 and up) 5-8-14, Thursday, 8:00 – 9:00 pm  $5.00

Astrology: A Story of You (Ages 14 and up) 5-22-14, Thursday, 7:00 – 8:00 pm  $5.00

Earth Moon and Sun (Ages 3 and up) 5-29-14, Thursday, 7:00 – 8:00 pm  $5.00

jenks planetarium sign

You must enroll through Jenks Community Ed in advance to have access to these special showings. Seating is limited. A detailed description of each of the programs is in their catalog on their website.

Contact Information for Jenks Community Ed:

918-298-0340  Office hours are: 7:30 am – 4:00 pm


You can enroll by phone or via their website.

Note: Finding quality fun family activities can sometimes feel challenging. These two activities are sure to delight your children and offer an opportunity to build your relationship with these fun, healthy and educational events. I might also note that most school districts offer community education classes. So check your own chlld’s school or surrounding schools in your area for other possible family activities.

I might also note the planetarium may be a fun COUPLE ACTIVITY if you are interested in space and astrology. I was told by the Jenks Community Office, the planetarium is geared for all ages.

Reading Together – A Couple or Parent / Child Activity to Connect Intellectually and Emotionally

Reading together is a wonderful way to connect with your loved ones, whether it is with a child, a significant other or a spouse. In our high-tech age, we don’t always think of this kind of activity. On a winter’s day or evening it can be great when outdoor activities are not possible.  Or when it is raining or really for any time that you need to slow down a bit. It is a way to add interest and new things to consider and discuss with one another. Basically a way to connect intellectually and emotionally, a double win!  Below I have shared some possible variations of how “reading together” might be done.

couple reading by fireplace

As a Couple . . .

  • Consider selecting a book that is of interest to both of you. Buy two copies, one for each of you. Or of course you can share or check it out from the library. Read a chapter and discuss.
  • Another possibility is to take turns on selection of which book you read together. This is a bit more adventuresome, but it does mix it up a bit and makes both people stretch. You could read a certain amount and then talk about.
  • You each read your own book but stop at intervals and tell each other what is going on with your book and what you think about it and have a conversation about it.
  • Instead of a book, you could do an article from a magazine, newspaper, something on-line, etc. Again discussion following.
  • One of you reads to the other. This is especially nice when one of you is ill.  Sometimes this can be spontaneous when one of you finds something of interest that you feel your loved one might find of interest.

As a Family . . .

  • Drop Everything and Read Time. Some folks call this DEAR time. Everyone can read whatever they like and then after a certain amount of time each person can share a bit of what they were reading. Questions can be asked or discussions can develop. And maybe as you do this you can have a snack together. You can have a regular time you do this as a family or set it up when you feel it is a good fit for your family to do.
  • Select a book to all read at the same time and to discuss. Maybe one chapter at a time.
  • Read Aloud Time: Family members take turns picking something to read to their family. This could be a very short story or a poem or a chapter of a book or a quote. This might be done on family night or be done as part of Family Meeting Time. It could be done where only one “read aloud” happens per time or each person does a short read aloud. Discussion can follow.

family reading together

As a Parent / Child Activity . . . 

  • Let your child choose a book and you take turns reading it together. You can talk about what each of your thoughts are afterwards.
  • You read to your child. Invitation for discussion afterwards.

Hope you will have lots of cuddle up time soon to do some reading together. You won’t be sorry you did!

FREE Family Fitness Festival at St Francis Health Zone, Tulsa OK, Saturday, October 12 for All Ages

Check out the FREE family fun at St. Francis’s Family Fitness Festival this coming Saturday, October 12 from 4:00 – 8:00 pm. This will be held at St Francis Health Zone, 5353 E. 68th St. There are activities planned for all ages.

Children’s Carnival (for ages 5 and under, Kids Zone Patio, games and art activities)

Youth Fit Zone – Inflatable Obstacle Course (for ages 6 – 12, Health Zone Parking Lot)

family zumbaGlow in the Dark Zumba (dance for all ages, free glow sticks for the first 50 participants, from 6:00-7:30 pm)

As parents we all want our children to be active and healthy. Participating with children and teens in these kinds of events can promote the worthy goal of caring for our bodies.  This should be a fun family event that gets everyone moving. Plus, being active together has the added benefit of building your family relationships.

Here is to having fitness as a family goal!

PS To see the official brochure on this event, click on this link.     HZ_FamFes   Contact Number: 918-494-8263

Do you know about Choregus, Tulsa’s Modern Dance Performances?

choregus performance KoreshDo you like modern dance and music performances? You might consider checking out Choregus. They host world-class contemporary dance and music performances here in Tulsa. Their season runs from September through April and is held at Cascia Hall’s Performing Arts Center (Helmerich Theatre). Tickets are $15 – $40.  per performance. Plus discount tickets are available. I was not aware of this group until this summer and decided to do a post so that those looking for activities to do as a couple or as a family could be aware of this opportunity. I think they are worth checking out. They were the 2012 recipient of the Oklahoma Governor’s Arts in Education award.

You can call 918-688-6112 for more information. I would also suggest that you go into their website www.choregus.org to get detailed information about each of their performances.  There are links to view the dance or music company coming to perform.

The next two performances that are scheduled are:

Koresh Dance Company

Saturday, October 5 at 8:00 pm and Sunday, October 6 at 3:00 pm

Gillim Dance

Saturday, November 16 at 8:00 pm and Sunday, November 17 at 3:00 pm

I have not had the opportunity to attend any of Choregus’s performances, but I have two professional colleagues who have season tickets to Choregus and very much enjoy the performances that they bring into Tulsa.

If  you are a modern dance fan, this could be a very fun date night.   Or if you have a child who likes modern dance this could be a fun parent / child or family activity. Hope you will be able to check this out.

Couple Time or Family Time at the Farmer’s Market


Want to connect as you do something good for the environment and healthy for your body. Doing something that is simple, easy and meaningful. GO LOCAL with your marketing. 

It is that time of year when the FARMERS MARKETS are in full swing. If this is an activity you have not participated in before, you may want to consider giving it a try. The Tulsa area has several farmer’s markets that sell fresh produce from local farms. Some of these farms grow organic foods. Knowing where your food comes from and building a relationship with some of these farmers is pretty cool.  In addition most of them have local art and handmade products. It is a fun community event where people are there to promote local and to choose products that are good for our environment and more healthy for our bodies. And you will save money!

NOTE: If you take CHILDREN to the market, consider their age and how much walking they can do. For little ones a stroller or wagon can be very helpful. Of course, as with any marketing it is best to go when you are not tired. This especially applies for children.  Consider limiting your time to what your child or children can comfortable manage to keep it a positive experience. Letting your children help pick out your veggies can be fun and educational and allow them to be part of the process. You might expand this activity to a family or parent / child cooking time, using your fresh veggies you purchased at the farmers market. 

There are a variety of times these markets are open. I have listed the main markets in the Tulsa area below. The OK Food and Farm Alliance also has a listing of all of OK Farmer’s Markets. So if you are not in one of the Tulsa area towns listed, check out the OK Food and Farm Alliance website okfarmand food.org  



10:30 am – 2:00 pm, year-round     3rd and Boston



8:00 am – 12:00 pm. May thru October

Food Pyramid parking lot, 39th and Peoria

WINTER MARKET (see details for details)




8:00 am – 12:00 pm, April 29 thru October



4:00 pm – 7:00 pm, April 18 thru September 26

East end of Centennial Park, 6th and Peoria




7:00 am – 11:00 am , April 6 thru October

On 15th Street, just east of Peoria




7:00 am – 11:00 am, April 6 thru October

On 11th Street just each of Peoria




8:00 am – 12:00 pm , April 20 thro September 7

418 Main St.



9:00 am – 1:00 pm, April 27 thru October 5

Green Acres Market, 117 S. 7th St.




8:99 am-12:00 pm , April 29 – October

YMCA Parking Lot, 8300 N. Owasso Expressway


9:00 am – 11:00 am, every other Saturday all winter


Guthrie Green Sunday Market

10:00 am – 4:00 pm, April 7 thru October 27

North Boston and 111 E. Brady St. in The Brady Arts District


Hope you enjoy your time  “going local” and becoming a bit of a foodie. Your partner or family will enjoy this fresh open air environment and the healthy connection of good food and good times. 

Cooking Together as a Couple or Family – The Perfect Activity for Fun and Connection


Cooking together can be an incredibly fun and connecting activity for couples and families.  Yes at times cooking can feel like it is a chore if we are tired and overloaded; especially, if we are doing it by our lonesome with no one helping. But together it can lighten this activity, infusing energy and time to talk and interact, something we all could use a bit more of. That said, if you are in an incredibly bad mood or need to be by your self, you may want to wait as some patience and tolerance is part of cooking together.

Cooking as a couple and cooking as a family will have some different dynamics. Cooking as a family with children requires more plan ahead and time alloted.  Cooking as a couple (if no children are involved) can be down right romantic and can be a bit more spontaneous. Just remember you may have different ideas on how to make something. Accepting this and avoiding being rigid as to how something should be made will help to keep it positive.

Here are some considerations in planning and cooking together as a couple or as a family. 

  • Including a planning piece can help to alleviate frustration and disappointment. Of course, at times everyone cooking together may need to be more spontaneous. But if possible, planning what you want and having the needed ingredients can sure make it a more smooth process.  Planning might include:
  1. What is on the menu? Choosing to plan this together can gain more cooperation and encourage a more team approach. This would of course be the most helpful if this is done before you do grocery shopping. Incorporating some things that each person likes can go toward a more satisfying meal for everyone. 
  2. If this is a family activity, are the dishes planned ones that have parts that the younger children can help with?  For example: tearing lettuce leaves, stirring a batter, throwing in specific ingredients, etc. 
  • Patience, tolerance and non perfectionism are some of the main ingredients for cooking as a family. Children are children and they will need to help according to their skill level. The process here is so much more important than the product. RELAXING and EMBRACING the MESS is part of it. 
  • Making sure there is enough time is important as children will slow the process.
  • Having a small healthy snack or appetizer before you start cooking may keep everyone more pleasant and patient.
  • If little ones are involved having a place set up that is safe for their involvement is important.
  • ENCOURAGING and PRAISING each other makes the process so much sweeter, whether it is as a couple or as a family. 
  • Planning a themed meal can be fun. For example: Mexican, Italian, etc or a Tea Party or a Backyard Picnic.

Note: As this is Memorial Day Weekend, you could plan a meal that honors a family member that is no longer with you, who has passed on. For example: Grandpa John’s grilled corn or Grandma Sue’s apple pie.  The idea here would be to include some dishes that the person was famous for making or a dish that they loved, etc.  This would encourage conversation and a time of remembering of our loved ones and their contributions to our food traditions. 

Happy Cooking!!!