For Purpose Kids- Books for raising anti-racist kids

Mammas Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be A$%holes Part II- Books for Raising Anti-Racist Kids

In this moment, there is so much to learn. 

There are so many voices to amplify, words to sit with, books to read and emotions to process and feel.  It is time for us to listen and begin to understand what so many have been trying to share with us for so long.  The world should be fair, it should be just and it should be equal for all…but it’s not.  Black Lives Matter.

I wanted to mostly include books that are written and/ or illustrated by BIPOC (Black & Indigenous People of Color) for this list and don’t only focus on Black History or topics around social justice.  While it is important to include those books on every bookshelf, we also want our kids to see themselves and see diverse characters experiencing the joys, and sometimes disappointments, of everyday life.
Misty Castaneda
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#MayKindnessGrow Kindness Challenge

#MayKindnessGrow Kindness Challenge

To Our For Purpose Kids Community,

It's been a while since we've posted on our blog here at For Purpose Kids and we have some exciting news!  We have a new heart-centered collaborator joining our team and we can't wait for you to meet her and her family.

Misty (our Founder) met Jennifer while both "Boy Moms" were visiting their "snowbird" parents in Florida last year.  While initially connecting so their three boys could play together, they quickly realized they had a shared vision for the kind of future they wanted for their kids & for the world.  When they met up in Florida again this year, the wheels started turning and it sparked a conversation of the two working together. 

Jennifer & her family live in Indiana and she is now bringing her love of writing & photography to the world of For Purpose Kids- and we are so happy to welcome her!  So stay tuned to more blog posts & photos from the Maas Family and read below about their first project with For Purpose Kids, #MayKindnessGrow. 

- For Purpose Kids

Jennifer Maas- Heart- Centered Collaborator at For Purpose Kids 

“Love begins at home, and it is not how much we do, but how much love we put in the action that we do.” -Mother Teresa-

Over the years I have practiced focusing on what I have, rather than what I do not have. It is not easy, but it holds true now more than ever. Instead of focusing on the cancelled events and the uncertainty of our current state, I am focusing on when I get to spend quality time with my family, May Day when I can be reminded of my truly generous friends and the #MayKindnessGrow Kindness Challenge, using the Kindness Calendar with For Purpose Kids. I am focusing on May and all that it still has in store for me, my family and the For Purpose Kids community!

For me, the month of May symbolizes a time for beginnings, growth and renewed energy. I open the windows, plant my flower boxes and I have a major pep in my step. With an abundance of fresh air I grasp the opportunity to spread my newfound happiness. Despite the current shelter in place, I still find myself especially excited for May because I have the chance to make a difference. I have the chance to spread kindness one day at a time. For Purpose Kids is challenging everyone to join us on an important adventure to grow kindness in the month of May by completing the Kindness Calendar with your loved ones.

For Purpose Kids Kindness Calendar

The calendar is a call to action for both children and parents to take a moment out of your day to do a random act of kindness. Moreover, it is a fun and simple challenge which reminds everyone that kindness begins with us, the parents, in the home. Once that kindness is established at home it can grow and spread throughout the community and touch others in astonishing ways.

One of the inspirations I had for kickstarting the #MayKindnessGrow Kindness Challenge in May was cultivated through a very dear friend of mine who taught me all about May Day (May 1st). On May Day you and your children drop flowers, candy or gift baskets on a neighbors doorstep to help spread love and celebrate the beginning of Spring. Throughout the years I have found this act of kindness extremely touching. This year, placing the Kindness Calendar on a friend or neighbors’ doorstep would be a great way to brighten your day and the day of those around you! Moreover, #MayKindnessGrow is going to be a great way to connect with your children and the community...and to let their creativity shine!

I want to invite you to join us for the #MayKindnessGrow Kindness Challenge and follow along with us @forpurposekids and @maykindnessgrow on Instagram, where I'll be posting pictures of my family & I participating in the daily acts of kindness listed on the For Purpose Kids Kindness Calendar.

To grab your own copy of the calendar, you can purchase it on the For Purpose Kids website here, or stay tuned to our social media for the link to the free download in a few days. 

We'll also be doing some fun giveaways (did someone say FREE TOOLKITS?!?) during the challenge, so make sure to follow along and post pictures of your family doing acts of kindness from the calendar using the hashtag #MayKindnessGrow on Instagram. 

We can't wait to see all of the kindness that is sprinkled around neighborhoods and communities throughout the world so get your kiddos & family ready- who's in?!?

- Jennifer Maas

Heart-Centered Collaborator, For Purpose Kids



Jennifer Maas
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Why We Need to Prioritize Volunteering with Our Kids

Why We Need to Prioritize Volunteering with Our Kids

Guest Blog Post by our Friend Amy Carney, Author of Parent on Purpose

When my kids were young, I knew that I wanted to raise them in a family who was known for their kindness, generosity, and ability to love others well.

What I didn’t know was how difficult it would be as a parent to actually live this out.

We want our kids to be kind.

We want our sons and daughters to be compassionate.

We want our offspring to be loving and empathetic toward others.

We can’t just want our children to grow up with these essential values and character traits; we must purposely show up in our home, community and world and consistently show kindness, compassion, love and empathy to others.

But, how do we prioritize serving others in this busy culture we are raising our kids in today?

Misty Castaneda
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For Purpose Kids- it's time to make teaching kindness a priority

What does she need to hear from me today? Confessions from an overloaded Mama...

A recent social media marketing expert I was working with (hi Jenna!) told me to think about this question when coming up with my social media content for the week:

What does she need to hear from me today?

(“She” because “she” is my target demographic…but it could be a he or a they too- I want to be inclusive of everyone who may need to hear from me.)

And honestly…I’m not really sure anymore. 

But, today I felt the need to share in a raw, unscripted and honest way.  Because, if you’re feeling like me, it’s all feeling like too much.  And when things are “too much”, we shut down, or at least I do.  And we can’t do that…because we have our kids to think about.

Misty Castaneda
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Playdates with Purpose- For Purpose Kids

Having Fun while Doing Good: Hosting a Playdate with Purpose

There are many creative options for parents and caregivers, depending on the age and attention span of children, the season, and the amount of time you want to spend on this endeavor while still giving children free time to play.  Using the following tips to incorporate service into playdates and other family routines and planned activities (like birthday parties, milestone celebrations, family vacations and holiday traditions) will create a habit of kindness and allow kids to flex their empathy muscles as they grow.

  • Start with a story
  • Keep it simple, creative and fun
  • Make it meaningful
Misty Castaneda
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The Perfect Holiday Gifting Solution for Raising Grateful Kids

The Perfect Holiday Gifting Solution for Raising Grateful Kids

Yep…it’s still all the rage.  And I love it in theory, but I have a hard time with it IRL (that’s “in real life” for those of you, like me, that are bit behind the times).

But when it comes to the holidays, I’m ALL about it- especially because I think it will help support those of us looking to raise kids that are grateful…and not entitled little ______ (I’ll let you fill in the blank here). 

So once again, this holiday season, we’re going to adhere to the Minimalist Approach to Gift Giving for our kiddos with this:

Something They Want,

Something They Need,

Something to Wear,

Something to Read

AND Something to Give to Those in Need.

This concept has been making its’ way around the internet for quite a few years now, but this last bit about giving, is something we added last year because it fit in so nicely with what we do here at For Purpose Kids (and because the rhyme just worked TOO perfectly).

Misty Castaneda
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Mammas Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be A$%holes

Mammas Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be A$%holes

My Mom is a HUGE Willie Nelson fan, so I grew up listening to this song.  And yes, I took a few liberties with the title and even included an “unkind” word, which could be considered a bit risqué for someone with a kids’ brand.  But I assure you, that language is meant for you- to catch your attention.  It, or any words like it, are not used in any of our Toolkits for your kiddos (I promise!)- although I have to admit my son has probably heard me say it a time or two.  But the message is clear and I know you know what I'm talking about.

So- here we are, discussing how scary it is to be raising a son in today’s world. 

But not for the reason that you may be thinking.  It’s scary for me- because of the overwhelming responsibility I feel to raise a compassionate and empathetic little boy that treats everyone, and I mean EVERYONE, with respect and kindness.

And it’s hard.


Misty Castaneda
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Be Kind & Do Good with The Giving Bag

Be Kind & Do Good with The Giving Bag

Picture it…Sicily 1937…(just a little fun for those GG fans out there, and if you don’t know what tv show this is from, you are missing out!) 

No, but really, picture it…

…you’re driving home from soccer practice with your kids in the car, the light turns yellow and you slow to a stop at the intersection and there’s a man or woman standing there, with a sign saying that they are homeless and in need of help.

What do you do?

There are a few likely responses to this question and we’re going to talk about them- even the ones that make us feel uncomfortable.  Yep, come on, it’s time.

Misty Castaneda
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One "For Purpose Mom" Tells It Like It Is

One "For Purpose Mom" Tells It Like It Is

On this week’s blog, we're so excited to feature our first “Guest Blogger”, a For-Purpose Mom in Pennsylvania, who ordered our Annual Subscription and started to incorporate ways of doing good in the world with her family and community.  Jolene is a perfect example of how families can begin to make a difference in the world, one kind activity at a time.

Jolene Leisure, in her own words:

Growing up, I always thought I would do big things.

Head to Africa and adopt a child? I'll get my passport.  Donate a kidney to a friend in need? Sign me up! 

But as time goes on and I realize how much I want to focus on my family, and I realize those huge aspirations are not right for this season of life. There are weeks that even volunteering in my local community is challenging.

One way that I've been really grateful to impact my local community and my family at the same time is to serve as a leader in many of my children's activities.

Misty Castaneda
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The Minimalist Approach to Gift Giving for Kids…with a DO GOOD Twist

The Minimalist Approach to Gift Giving for Kids…with a DO GOOD Twist


Yep…it’s all the rage this year.  Have you figured it out yet?  No, well let me help you out.

It’s the cool way of referring to the 4 Gift Challenge you may have heard about, the…

“Something They Want, Something They Need, Something To Wear, Something To Read” approach to gift giving. 

But wait, there are still a few more letters there that we didn’t explain.  Oh yes, that’s because we added a 5th “Gift” to the 4 Gift Challenge.

Can you guess what that might be?  Yes, of course! It’s the…

“Something to Give to Those in Need.”

 An idea that fits in so nicely with everything we do here at For-Purpose Kids.

(And the WTH…if you don’t know what that means, you’ll have to figure it out for yourself!)

I came upon this idea within the last year or two, but this will be the first year that I actually try and do it.  And I’m lucky, as this will only be my son’s second holiday season, so it will be easy for me to set the precedent this year without yells and screams of, “Where are all of the presents?”

Misty Castaneda
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Baby Hero Lucky Cat Onesie

For-Purpose Kids Partners with Baby Hero…Tell Me More, Tell Me More!

TELL ME MORE, TELL ME MORE! (Admit it, you’re singing this song from Grease in your head right now)

OK- here’s the scoop on our new partnership…

When I started brainstorming ideas for For-Purpose Kids, one of the things I realized I wanted to do was to highlight and support companies that offered products for kids AND were focused on doing good in the world.  So when I met Samar Shaheryar, Co-Founder of Baby Hero, last year at a Holiday Market in Hong Kong, I knew that this was the type of company that I wanted to partner with.

Misty Castaneda
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Grandparents ROCK...and Can Inspire our Kids to ROCK too!

Grandparents ROCK...and Can Inspire our Kids to ROCK too!

When I first found out I was pregnant almost two years ago to the day, I not only realized that my life was going to be forever changed, but that the dynamic in my family was also going to shift.  As one of four girls, my son was going to be the first grandchild on my side.  And while I knew this was going to be significant, I had NO idea what that was actually going to mean. 

My parents had never pressured us to have kids or whined continuously that they were not yet grandparents, so even though they were excited, I never thought they’d be the type to be constantly showing their friends (or the cashier at the grocery store!) the latest pictures from Facebook.

 But I was wrong. 

And to say this shocked my Mom most of all, is most definitely a true statement.  She became “obsessed” with this little man in a way none of us expected. 

Misty Castaneda
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