Category Archives: Uncategorized

3rd Birthday Party at Nunley’s Carousel #girlsbirthdayparty

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My daughter turned three and we threw her first party with kids from her class.  We chose a venue that worked for twelve three-year-olds plus family of various ages, Nunley’s Carousel at the Cradle of Aviation in Garden City, NY.

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The Carousel used to stand at Nunley’s Amusement Park in Baldwin, NY, from 1940 to 1995.  I remember many happy times there with my family.  A visit to the Carousel at its current location is a nostalgic, old-timey experience with authentic organ music and the simple joy of riding round and round on beautifully restored horses.  For a 3-year-old’s party, this simple activity is perfect.

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During the two-hour Princess and Prince-themed party, the schedule is flexible; but generally, the children ride, do a craft, ride again, eat pizza, ride again, eat cake, then ride until the party is over.

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The venue was closed to the public during the party, so it was just our friends and family celebrating our little girl’s 3rd birthday.  It was a fantastic time.

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The superstar birthday girl with her goody bag.

 

Goody Bags
Goody Bag

 

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Healthy Detox #Smoothie #Recipe @FoodBabe

I found a fresh and healthy smoothie recipe on FoodBabe.com and tried it out.  Strawberries and blueberries make it sweet and ginger and greens make it fresh.  Her recipe was a bit raw and bitter for me, so I jazzed it up by heavy-handing the fruit.  Now I’m obsessed.

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The recipe contains hemp protein powder made by Nutiva.

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Hemp protein is a great substitute for whey protein, which can be rough on the digestive system.  I found that the hemp protein thickens the smoothie and doesn’t overpower the other ingredients, as long as I didn’t add more than three tablespoons.

What’s your favorite detox smoothie recipe?

Easy DIY Fall Wreath #diy #fall

We try to live on a budget, so I’m very careful to find the thriftiest way to buy or create the seasonal decorations for the house.  I thought I’d try to make our fall wreath, and I did it…for $21!

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I went to Michaels Craft during a fall decoration sale and found the following materials.

  • 18″ Grapevine Wreath  $4.99
  • 2 Leaf garlands  $3.99/each
  • 2 bouquets of mums  $3.99/each

Fall Wreath

I had the following materials at home.

  • Aluminum jewelry wire (Floral wire would have been more appropriate, but any kind of wire works fine.)
  • Hot glue gun (to force stubborn leaves and flowers to stay where you want them)

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Instead of wrapping and looping the garland around the wreath, I attached it to the front side of the wreath using wire.  This way, I didn’t waste the garland on the side that wouldn’t be visible, and it made the wreath look fuller.  Each garland made it all the way around the wreath, and then some.

Next, I cut the mums off the bouquets, leaving about two inches of stem.  I stuck the mums sideways into blank spots on the wreath.  The mums were quite secure, but some hot glue reinforced the loose ones.

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I’ve seen wreaths like this for $50 plus at gift shops, so I think this was a very frugal endeavor.  Plus, I had a fun time creating!

Kick Off The New School Year with a #StrideRite #Giveaway! #BTS #Fashion #Win

My son received a free pair of kicks from Stride Rite so I could tell you what we think.  All opinions are my own (and his).  Stride Rite also set me up with a giveaway for TWO lucky readers! 

Shoes

I attended the Momtrends Back-to-School Event in the summer with Stride Rite and had the chance to check out their newest designs for back-to-school shoes.

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One thing I LOVE about Stride Rite, is that it’s one-stop-shopping. Not only do they sell Stride Rite brand shoes, but they have other top brands in the store and on the website.  Stride Rite brand is right-on with style and fit, especially in the early years; but when you have different kids, with different taste, you need tons of options.  I’ve been buying Stride Rite brand almost exclusively for my kids until this year when my 1st grader chose Saucony’s Excursion Lace.  He loves the comfort and the cool style, and we’re happy knowing that his feet are supported with quality shoes that are going to last.

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Saucony Excursion Lace $50.00

Plus, we didn’t have to shop somewhere else for his little sister!

A good sparkly choice for my little girl!  The Stride Rite SRT Lydia $46.00
A good sparkly choice for my little girl! The Stride Rite SRT Lydia $46.00

Go to the Stride Rite store to have your children’s feet accurately measured and try on lots of trendy styles like the Stride Rite character collections with Transformers, Star Wars, and Marvel.  Then check out the many top brands in stock, like Crocs, Merrill, Saucony, and Sperry.  Or, visit StrideRite.com and shop from home.  Don’t forget to use your Stride Rite Rewards card for benefits like a $10 reward for every $75 spent.

Giveaway!!

Earn lots of chances to win a free pair of shoes from Stride Rite below. Then, visit Raising Three Ladies for ANOTHER Stride Rite giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

1st Day of School #BacktoSchool #BTS #FirstGrade

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My son finished his first week of first grade yesterday and all is well. We were worried for him because he’s a sensitive soul and because it’s a new school; but the week went off without a hitch! *Giant sigh of relief*  He and a few classmates even helped the principal with the morning announcements on day one!

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And there were no tears!  Well, not from him, anyway.  His poor little sister was heartbroken that she couldn’t join her buddy.  🙁

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In good time, little one.

Back to School with Mabel’s Labels. #BTS #BackToSchool @mabelhood

I received the following product for the purpose of review.  All opinions are my own.

Back-to-School preparation is in full-swing!  I attended the Momtrends back-to-school event and had a fantastic time. You can check out my post about the event at Raising Three Savvy Ladies. One of my favorite back-to-school products from the event is Mabel’s Labels, “Labels for the stuff kids lose!”

Part of the Ultimate Back-to-School Combo
Part of the Ultimate Back-to-School Combo

In my experience, Mabel’s Labels are the best for identifying kids’ supplies, personal items and clothes. You will  need to label items whether your children are in school or day care, and you’ll need a lot of them. I’ve tried masking tape, Sharpie marker, stickers, and other labeling products, but Mabel’s Labels is heads above the rest. I will use them for my son who is in the 1st grade and for my daughter in nursery school.

The Ultimate BTS Combo includes two of these key ring tags too. Great for the lunch box!
The Ultimate BTS Combo includes two of these key ring tags too. Great for the lunch box!

The labels come in multiple sizes, they are resilient to everyday wear-and-tear, and the back-to-school package is plentiful. You’ll need them for pencils and scissors, lunch boxes, clothes, accessories, and more.

They stick on everything! Seen here: Pottery Barn Kids lunch box and water bottle, Crayola crayons and glue stick, Lands End Perfectly Packable Bag, and Spbang snack bag
They stick on everything! Seen here: Pottery Barn Kids lunch box and water bottle, Fiskars Non-Stick scissors, Crayola crayons and glue stick, Lands End Perfectly Packable Bag, and Spbang snack bag.

Now you also can find Mabel’s Labels Write Away Labels (self-laminating, writable sticky labels) at Walmart and Amazon.com. These are so versatile. They’re great to have around the house for those random, must-label moments.

Mabel’s Labels sent me the Back-to-School Combo for my son and daughter and I already started labeling their school supplies.  I’ve used them in the past, and I was so pleased with how well they endured the school year and beyond.

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This is the girl’s version of Write Away Labels. Look at all the cute icons that are included!

Go to Mabel’s Labels to see the different products available for students of all ages in a wide range of stylish designs. I’m guessing you’ll also want to buy some for yourself, like I do.  You’ll think of endless uses for their new line of household labels, too!

What will you be labeling this back-to-school season?

Summer with Kids #summerwithkids #parenting

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I have a love/hate relationship with summer.

I’m so grateful to have two children who can’t get enough of the sun and the water. I feel fortunate to be members at a beach club with endless activities on the sand, in the ocean, and in the pool. I also feel lucky to live on a block with a bunch of kids who play until we drag them inside for bed. But I’m so stinking exhausted!

PicMonkey Collage.jpgEvery day is different, so a routine is non-existent. Boredom isn’t possible…ok, that’s good.  But it’s also the worst part, because I get anxious without a routine.

Plus, I’m the stay-at-home parent, so I’m the cruise director on this long vacation. (Ironically, I’m not doing a lot of “staying at home”). MUST.  PLAN.  ACTIVITY.  That’s my mantra.   If the weather is nice, I must take the opportunity and get them outside.  Well, the weather has been perfect for almost the entire summer!  Can I get a rainy day around here?!

Then I look at my pictures from the last couple of months.

And then I love summer.

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It took forever to put all her “gear” on; but I had to take a moment to enjoy it.

 

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Am I the only one who finds herself regretfully wishing the summer away?

 

 

Celebrate National Friendship Day with Strawberry Shortcake! #BerryBestFriend @berrybestbits #win

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Sunday August 3rd is National Friendship Day and Strawberry Shortcake wants to help kids celebrate! Share a picture of your favorite girl with her BFF on the Strawberry Shortcake Facebook page– facebook.com/StrawberryShortcake  OR @berrybestbits on Instagram or Twitter, and Hashtag with #BerryBestFriend. Five sets of BFFs will be chosen at random and will win a new Strawberry Shortcake doll coming out this Fall!

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My daughter has a BFF and, hands down, it’s her brother.  They love and support each other in their own kid-way.  Even though Strawberry Shortcake isn’t his thing, I know he would take the time to play with her when she has her own Strawberry Shortcake dolls. I hope their bond never changes.

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#BBNYC Blogger Bash in NYC #TheBigToyBook #SweetSuite14

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I went to my first Blogger Bash event, Sweet Suite 2014 at Location 05 in NYC.  It was like girls night for blogger friends (old and new), with drinks, music and entertainment… parent blogger-style.  Drinks were signature candy cocktails and Zipz Wine, a great new single-serve wine that’s packaged in traditional stemware-looking plastic. nAttendees learned about many of the hottest toys hitting the market before the holidays and had lots of fun playing with them too!

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And of course we snacked on lots of sweets!

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I previewed the Tinkerbell character for Disney Infinity 2.0 and saw the game in action. It’s thrilling for kids (and adults like me) to see our favorite Disney characters in action on our gaming console.

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My 6-year-old son’s  current favorite, Lego, displayed their newest collections including, The Lego Movie, Legends of Chima, Ultra Agents, and Fusion.  With the Fusion collection, kids can build a creation and see it come to life on their smart phones or tablets in an app game.

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Uncle Milton previewed these fun Wall Friends in our favorite Frozen characters.  They hang on the wall, light up, and talk too!

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Paw Patrol toys are finally here from Spin Master! There are cute plush toys and hard toys in all our favorite Paw Patrol characters.

IMG_4199Another product from Spin Master is Kinetic Sand, the best indoor, low-mess, sand-like toy I’ve seen.  It’s clean, dust-free, and never dries out.

IMG_4160We’re big fans of B Toys for their well-made, innovative versions of classic baby and preschool toys.

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Battat also displayed their adorable Li’l Woodzeez collection.

This was just a selection of the many toy companies who participated in the event.  Perhaps the best part of attending the  Sweet Suite event is the major swag sent directly to your door.  I can’t wait for mine and definitely will join again next year!

 

Memorial Day Traditions

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My Memorial Day tradition always has been to attend the parade in town (and sometimes march!), then have our first true beach day of the season.  Today, my little family followed tradition without a hitch.  At the parade, my 2-year-old danced along to the patriotic tunes of the school bands and watched the fire trucks in awe.  My five-year-old, with a different perspective, really seemed to understand why we celebrate the uniformed service men and women and memorialize the lives lost in battle on this day.  Today was one of the exciting and challenging opportunities to open his growing mind up to our very big and complicated world.

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It was a gorgeous day at the beach for fun, sun, and swimming (in very cold water).  The kids don’t seem to have an inch of sunburn, although I somehow neglected my shoulders big time.  I still consider that a success!

What are your Memorial Day Traditions?