our blog

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free printable winter friends coloring page



For your inner child or your kid who loves to color, this week we have a free printable winter coloring page!


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How apple seeds started



 How apple seeds started!

Two of our awesome apple seeds & songs for seeds owners - Alison Qualter-Berna and Allison Schlanger - were featured in one of the recent NYC TV "Her Big Idea" episodes!

View the segment below to learn more about apple seeds - NYC's hippest and cleanest place, and songs for seeds - the country's most rocking' kids music program!




Check out more awesome "Her Big Idea" episodes online HERE!

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open before your holiday shopping is complete


We love the holidays Рmainly because we LOVE giving gifts. It may sound clich̩, but our favorite type of gift to give (as widely as possible), is a gift that gives back. Every year we go on a quest to find a new gift that we can give our friends and family that gives an even bigger gift to someone else. We have been doing this for years and it is amazing to see so many companies now offering products that support important causes. For this short list we are going to highlight some of the grass roots organizations that are on the ground, around the world, making 'doing good' their mission year-round. These are perfect holiday gifts for friends, family, teachers, coaches, co-workers and great stocking stuffers. We have purchased all of these products for our own families over the past 3 years so we can vouch for the quality, the packaging and the legitimacy and impact of the organizations.

Here are our top 4 products + 1 straight up giving back recommendation.  

THE ADVENTURE PROJECT
3 billion people in the world cook over an open fire. The smoke is equivalent to smoking 2 packs of cigarettes a day. 4 million people – mostly women and children – die from respiratory diseases every year. The Adventure Project trains women in Kenya and Tanzania to become stove entrepreneurs. These handmade stoves drastically reduce toxic smoke emissions. For every bar of gorgeous Adventure Project charcoal soap you buy, a family is given a stove. The charcoal soap is wrapped beautifully for the holidays and comes with the clearest explanation of the gift you are giving -- $20.

Last year, we gave this soap to everyone we know. This year The Adventure Project has added a candle you can add to the soap and create a larger gift set - $45.

Free shipping when you use code appleseeds at checkout.


After doing aid work, a college student at American University realized that soap is a very important part of the hygiene equation and needed attention. Each time you buy a Soapbox product the company donates a bar of soap to someone in need – often with proper hygiene education. These donated bars of soap are made from recycled bars from hotels that have been shaved down, sanitized and reformed to make a brand new bar. Soapbox works with local soap makers whenever possible as to ensure that giving away soap for free does not hurt their businesses. They have lots of products to choose from...we purchased the liquid hand soap this year, alongside the other gifts on our guide, for everyone on our list (ps. don’t tell them) - $4.99.



RAVEN + LILY
Raven + Lily helps to employ 1,500 women around the world offering them fair wages, healthcare and a safe job. You can shop by country or product. In past years we have purchased stationary and candles -- $8 - $28.

  

COOKIES FOR KIDS' CANCER
Our go to holiday gift for the past decade. Every single year a bunch of lucky friends, family and business partners get these delicious cookies from us and we get to help kick pediatric cancer’s butt. (100% of the profits support childhood cancer research.) Wrapped beautifully with info about Cookies for Kids' Cancer inside. 12 flavors to choose from. Always fresh. Always delicious. $29.99.

*We have been closely involved with this organization for 10 years. Your donations go directly to funding more effective, less toxic treatments for children. Cookies' partner centers include 7 of the top pediatric cancer hospitals in the country. Every single penny is put to vital use. Email cookieorders@beagoodcookie.org with questions or assistance on your order.



KENYA EDUCATION FUND
In Kenya, high school is not free. Due to extreme poverty and cultural practices an estimated 65% of Kenyan students won’t graduate high school – most of them girls. Started by our friend Brad Broder and local community leader, Dominic Muasya, Kenya Education Fund provides scholarships so as many kids as possible can stay in school. So far KEF has given this incredible gift to over 2,500 students.
$25 provides a student with a scientific calculator needed for school / $750 pays for an entire year of school.

*We have been involved with KEF for 12 years. We have seen the impact of KEF first hand. It has been life changing for the students and us.  



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free printable pumpkin friends coloring page

For your inner child or your kid who loves to color, grab this free pumpkin friends coloring page printable!



download your free coloring page here

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There are hundreds of refugee children stranded in NYC right now.

There are hundreds of refugee children stranded in NYC right now.

photo credit: @MarkLevineNYC on Twitter

Ever since the news of immigrant families being separated at the borders - children taken from their parents and parents from their children - has permeated the headlines, we have been consumed with these stories.

As owners of a business that serves families, but more importantly, as parents, we have tried to understand, if possible, on even the smallest level, what these refugee families seeking asylum must be going through. We have tried to visualize our own families at a border crossing being torn from each other and our reactions to that sudden and brutal separation.  But this exercise only lasts 10 - 15 seconds because it is unimaginable for a sustained length of time. If the mere thought of having our children taken from us (and them being further separated from each other) with no way to be in touch and no information of where they are or how they are doing is too much to tolerate - what can the reality possibly be like? 

A friend forwarded us a newsletter from New York City Council Member, Mark Levine. His office was collecting donations (clothes, diapers, toys) for the children stranded in NYC – many of them completely alone and thousands of miles away from their parents or from anyone they know. We started looking to his office for updates. The response to their original call for material donations was incredible. They are now in the next stage of assistance. We are passing on this information for those who are also looking for a way to support the children.

Needed most now -- financial donations for the non-profits that are currently caring for the children.  

Contributions to one of the organizations providing legal and social service support to these children…
The Northern Manhattan Coalition for Immigrant Rights: offering legal defense for families seeking asylum or facing deportation

The Legal Aid Society: providing deportation defense and other immigration legal services to unaccompanied minors, adults with children, and other vulnerable individuals

The Safe Passage Project: an immigrant legal services program for unaccompanied minors and refugee children separated from their parents.

The Door: providing unaccompanied adolescent migrants in NYC with housing and other social services

Kids in Need of Defense: works to ensure no child appears in immigration court without an attorney.

The New York Immigration Coalition: advocating for immigrant rights in NYC and nationally.

Make the Road New York: a grassroots immigrant advocacy organization that’s been deeply engaged in fighting against the family separation policy.

Volunteer opportunities
There are volunteer opportunities to help sort the original call for donations. 
You can sign up for a volunteer shift here.

The foster agencies are all in need of financial contributions, Spanish-speaking foster parents, and a limited number of general volunteers (for security reasons and to protect the safety of the children, the organizations need time to vet foster parents and volunteers, as such, responses may take some time). For information on how you can help each individual organization see: