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Thank you to Barnes and Noble Mastercard, powered by Barclaycard for sponsoring this conversation and helping us as we continue preparing for tot school this year.

Squeaker will be two in December and I’ve already started planning to start doing a more formal tot school/preschool at home with her. I understand, fully, that she’s a toddler and she may not always cooperate with my carefully laid plans. Which is why I’m not going to plan things out to the minute or even use lesson plans at this point. I think it would be futile and would only result in frustration for both of us. But, that still won’t stop me from preparing for tot school, as informal as it might be. We’ll read, do art projects, play with her toys, go to the playground, take walks around the neighborhood. And if she’s up to it, I’ll sneak in a theme or two.

With my toddler turning 2 in December, we're still preparing for tot school. Informal as it may be, I still want to be ready. My thanks to Barnes and Noble for helping with this endeavor. #BNschoolsavings

Squeaker enjoys books and being read to.

She’s also starting to “read” on her own and she’s showing preferences for certain characters. Her pretend play skills are starting to emerge, she loves making noise/music with just about anything and everything around the house, and she’s recently discovered a love for art/making a mess with art supplies. She’s curious about the world around her and eager to learn.

In short, this is such a wonderful time to start introducing concepts and reinforce concepts that she already knows.

One way that we’ve done this is through books. We have multiple times during the day that we read together and many of her books also cover concepts and themes. Some of her favorites are about the alphabet, colors, and Frozen. And while we can definitely find books at the local library, I will also never turn down the opportunity to continue filling our library at home with new or used books.

And even for someone like me who enjoys the convenience of online shopping, there’s really nothing that beats going to a bookstore. I will spend hours in a bookstore and more often than not, I will not leave empty handed.

Shopping for books is one of the few types of leisure shopping that I do enjoy and I have a very hard time parting with books. Especially if they’re books for children. I am a firm believer in the concept of there never being enough books. And I am thoroughly enjoying sharing this love of books and reading with Squeaker.

Fortunately for me, she’s just as enthusiastic about books and reading and will bring books over to me during the day.

Recently, we took a trip to our local Barnes and Noble to look for some new books to add to our home library and to meet some of Squeaker’s new interests.

One of the first displays that we saw, after walking in, were for workbooks, flashcards and things of that nature. Now, I’m not so certain if that’s something that I want to introduce just yet. She’s a toddler, after all, and I can’t realistically expect for her to sit down and do pages from a workbook.  That still didn’t stop me from taking a closer look though.

preparing for tot school 2

It took me a moment to decide which product to get, but we ended up picking the last set of My First BrainQuest cards. I think it will be something that she can use for a little while and at the very least, we can be interactive with it.

Next, we were off to the children’s section.

preparing for tot school 3

We saw a few of our favorites by Sandra Boynton over there!

And then it was off to one of my favorite parts of Barnes and Noble– the bargain shelf.

preparing for tot school 4

For me, a trip to Barnes and Noble is never complete without looking at the bargain shelves. Normally, I’m looking at the bargain books for adults, but since were there for Squeaker, we took our time. Squeaker was especially enamored after seeing the Frozen themed books.

After that, we looked through the board books before making our final selections.

Once we were home, Squeaker didn’t waste anytime getting into her new books.

preparing for tot school 5

I would definitely consider this a successful trip to Barnes and Noble and look forward to going back again soon to pick up more books and supplies for our Tot School.

One thing that we might consider in the future is a Barnes and Noble Mastercard. Believe me, this is not a decision that we would make lightly, but I would also consider the benefits of the card before applying for one.


For example, we would receive a $25 Barnes and Noble gift card when we make our first purchase and an additional $25 gift card every time we reach 2,500 points. There’s also no annual fee, which really appeals to me, and you can also get 5% back when you buy school supplies and textbooks.  The card can be used in stores or online.

You earn reward points for buying everyday items with your card like gas and groceries for every $1 that you spend.

Other things that you can purchase with your Barnes and Noble Mastercard at Barnes and Noble include:

  • Books
  • Nook Books
  • Toys and Games
  • Home items and Gifts
  • Movies
  • Gift cards
  • Magazines and Newspapers

For us, a Barnes and Noble Mastercard would make a lot of sense if we were going to get a new credit card.

Have you ever considered applying for a Barnes and Noble Mastercard? Do you enjoy shopping at Barnes and Noble?

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Digital Product Creator at Kori at Home
Kori is a late diagnosed autistic/ADHD mom. She is currently located in Albany, NY where she is raising a neurodiverse family. Her older daughter is non-speaking autistic (and also has ADHD and Anxiety) and her youngest daughter is HSP/Gifted. A blogger, podcaster, writer, product creator, and coach; Kori shares autism family life- the highs, lows, messy, and real. Kori brings her own life experiences as an autistic woman combined with her adventures in momming to bring you the day-to-day of her life at home. Kori is on a mission to empower moms of autistic children to make informed parenting decisions with confidence and conviction.

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