Sunday, May 20, 2018

Scarlett's 3.5 Year Old Update

I haven't done an update since Scarlett turned 3, so I felt like now would be a perfect time to do an update on Scarlett since she's almost three and a half.  It's hard to believe she'll be four at the end of the year!

Here's what's new with my silly girl:

Scarlett is potty trained! I'm so happy to announce she's out of pull-ups and has been completely day and night trained for the past two months.  She virtually had no accidents in the beginning and was excited to be in big girl underwear.  I was thrilled to not have to buy pull-ups anymore which are very expensive.  Scarlett is great at telling you when she has to go to the bathroom which I am grateful for.  Most kids are day trained long before they are night trained too so I am lucky it worked in my favor.  Our days are starting earlier since she wakes up early to go to the bathroom.  I'm not ready to be up at 6 AM, but I have no choice.  She used to sleep until 7:30-8, so the days are extra long lately!



I continue to be impressed with how much Scarlett knows.  She listens and remembers everything and you really have to watch what you say around her.  It's safe to say she's my little parrot! She knows more and more on a daily basis and sometimes I'm shocked with how much she has picked up. Her personality is fun and silly but mixed with a caring side.  She feels bad if someone gets hurt and is crying.  It's fun to hear her speak in full sentences and she's come a long way with her speech, especially since she was a late talker.


Scarlett is very big into music and TV these days.  Some of her favorite shows are Doc McStuffins, Mickey Mouse Club House, The Wiggles, PJ Masks, Peppa Pig, Masha and The Bear and more.  Music is also something that she loves and she has a big opinion on what she listens to.  She'll tell me to change a song if she doesn't like it, but will tell me when she loves one too.  It's pretty funny.  Her favorite songs are Train's Play That Song, Ed Sheeran's Perfect, Charlie Puth's One Call Away, and Imagine Dragons Thunder.  She loves to sing along to those songs and it always brings a smile to my face.

Preschool is over in mid June and the year flew by.  She goes 3 days a week now and is never thrilled when I have to pick her up.  I think she'd love to live there if given the opportunity! There's an end of the year show and dinner for the preschool families in the coming weeks and I can't wait to hear her sing in her class's show.  I'm sure it'll be adorable! I've asked her what songs she is singing, but she won't tell me.  I guess I'll be surprised.


Play-Doh and arts and crafts are what she enjoys most.  You'll always find her making something with Play-Doh or drawing in a coloring book with her crayons.  She also loves puzzles, magnatiles, and her doll house.

Food continues to be a love affair for my tiny tot.  Scarlett loves fruit and veggies as much as I love chocolate.  Of course she loves her fair share of junk food too, but she really is the healthiest eater I know.  She eats tomatoes and peppers and fruit all day long. I asked her if she wanted a piece of cake the other day and she said no, I want a red pepper! I hope she continues to love fruits and veggies for years to come.



Scarlett enjoys helping me cook and bake on a frequent basis.  She's always game for helping me mix some pancake batter or pouring rice into a measuring cup.  On Thursday morning I made her eggs for breakfast and she enjoyed cracking the eggs.  I then greased the pan and she said "so it doesn't stick!" That warmed my heart because that's the first step to cooking eggs.  It really shows me that she's paying attention and cares.  Who knows, maybe she'll have a career in cooking?

We have a bunch of things planned for the summer including going to Florida, going to see The Wiggles, and going away for a combined anniversary/birthday trip for me, among many other things. I know Scarlett will have a ton of fun at each place.  We'll be staying overnight on a scenic farm for the birthday/anniversary trip which Scarlett will love.  I had to make it kid friendly to keep her happy and entertained! No family was able to watch her so we could go alone, but that's ok!



My tiny girl is usually an easy-going child, but has her moments as of late.  She is really testing boundaries lately and pushing limits and some days are really challenging.  I am doing the best I can but sometimes she doesn't listen to anyone.  This is not an easy age! I have to count my blessings though because she is a good sleeper, good eater, and usually very patient.  You can't have everything, right?

I can't see where the next 6 months takes us.  This year is just flying by!


Thursday, May 17, 2018

5 Reasons You Should Hire Professional Exterminators If Bugs Keep Coming Back


All pests are hard to get rid of, but some are more tenacious than others. If you have tried to exterminate a pest yourself or have even hired an exterminator only to see the bugs return, it is time to call one of the best pest control companies in the business. Here are five reasons to call Terminix if you are facing re-infestation: 



1. Sometimes You Need a Professional: Some pests are harder to exterminate than others. For instance, bed bugs are known to be particularly resolute. If you are dealing with bed bugs, Terminix can send over a top  bed bug exterminator to help you sleep without being bitten. 
2. Not all Pests are the Same: Not all pests will respond the same way to certain treatment methods. Terminix professionals tailor their extermination methods depending on the type of pest that has infested your home.
3. Years of Experience: Terminix has been in the pest control business for nearly a century and has been recognized as one of the top pest control companies nationwide. If the bugs have returned, they may need to have special treatments and Terminix professionals know what it takes to rid your home of bugs. 
4. A Satisfaction Guarantee: Terminix professionals pride themselves in their service. If the bugs return, your Terminix professional will revisit your home at no additional cost to make sure that the pests are handled.*
5. Home Protection: In addition to pest control, Terminix offers a variety of options for protecting your home against future infestation. 




If the bugs keep coming back, it is time to call in the professionals at Terminix and serve those pests an eviction notice. 

* If within 30 days after an inspection or treatment you aren’t totally satisfied, we will refund the applicable treatment or coverage charges and reimburse any prepaid services and cancel your plan.

Saturday, May 12, 2018

My 4th Mother's Day!

Tomorrow marks my 4th Mother's Day.  Can you believe it?

It seems like yesterday Scarlett was a baby and the future was full of wonder and discovery.  The years flew by and my tiny baby transformed into a walking, talking toddler who is full of opinions and questions.  Sometimes I miss the days where life was slower and Scarlett was less active but I also am happy with where life is currently. 

Scarlett and I on my first Mother's Day in 2015.  She was 5 months old!

Being a mom is certainly not for everyone.  You sacrifice a lot and you give your child your all.  Life is not just about you anymore, but caring for someone else's needs entirely day in and day out.  Not everyone is cut out to be a parent and that's perfectly ok.   It's up to me to make sure Scarlett is happy and healthy, especially as a stay-at-home-mom.  Our days are long and sometimes I am exhausted by bedtime, but like they say the days are long and the years are short.

It's scary to me that Scarlett is turning four this year.  It really does make me sad because the baby years are fleeting and I'll blink and she'll be in kindergarten!  I wish there was a way to freeze time because three is such a fun age.  Scarlett constantly makes my husband and I laugh and she's really a joy to be around.  I can have a real conversation with her and she has a lot to say these days! Plus, she's into music and loves to sing along to certain pop songs on the radio.

My wish for her on Mother's Day is for us to always be close.  I wish her all the happiness in the world and will always love her now and forever.  




Wednesday, May 9, 2018

The Recovery Village in Cleveland Ohio is Here to Help

As much as we want life to be easy and smooth sailing, that's not always the case.  Sometimes people get caught up in activities that they aren't proud of and need help to fix.  There are all kinds of reasons why people take up drug and alcohol use.  The most important thing is that these individuals receive the help they need in overcoming their addiction.



The Recovery Village in Cleveland Ohio is here to help and they want to make sure you are comfortable during this life-changing process.  The treatment facility offers unique drug and alcohol rehab centers and facilities created just for you.  Patients will enjoy modern facilities that provide a full continuum of care in a therapeutic setting.  Enjoy luxurious accommodations and amenities designed to heal body and mind.

Once you log onto the Recovery Village's website, you'll see all of the locations available for the treatment center.  The alcohol rehab, drug rehab, and eating disorder treatment centers are located minutes away from many of the nation's largest cities.  Each of the treatment facilities provide full services including medical drug or alcohol detox, PHP, eating disorder medical stabilization, residential care, individualized and group therapy, and post-treatment options.  

Any information you need on local Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous and SMART Recovery meetings as well as other valuable phone numbers and information is available on the website. The Recovery Village has a team of experts who can assist on finding the right treatment plan, locating rehab centers, and helping with financial limitations.  If you're in need of help, the first step of recovery is admitting you need it. 

Remember, it's never too late to help yourself and be the best person you can be.  

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Celebrate Precious Moments' 40th Anniversary With Noah's Ark Themed Nursery Items! + Giveaway

I remember being so excited to decorate Scarlett's nursery before she was born.  Once we ordered the furniture, the decorating and design process began! I ordered many prints online for the walls that I framed and hung with care.  I have to say I love how her room came out, especially because I am not always the best with decorating.  If you're pregnant and due soon, or recently gave birth, Precious Moments would be ideal for any nursery.



Precious Moments offers adorable porcelain ornaments and figurines for virtually any occasion you need including engagements, wedding, birthdays, Christmas, anniversaries and more.  Whether you want a figurine to represent a new baby in your home or even a nativity scene to put on your table for Christmas, they have it all.  Precious Moments has been bringing people joy for almost 40 years now and their products are famous.  There's certainly a special piece that will be perfect for you or a loved one that will warm their heart.  Keep Precious Moments in mind for  gifts this year and beyond.

In honor of Precious Moments 40th anniversary, they are kicking off the season with a beautiful new line of Noah's Ark-Themed nursery items.  If you're a new mom or looking for the perfect gift for someone's nursery, the brand has you covered.  The Overflowing With Love Collection offers adorable animal themed items that add a bright touch of faith and fun to nursery decor.  This coordinated collection features a photo frame, snow globe, nightlight, bank and more.  Surely anything from the collection would make a perfect gift for a baby shower, baptism, or to welcome new baby home!




The piggy bank features the smiling faces of God's creatures.  Children will enjoy having the opportunity to keep their first coins and dollars safe, and the bank will be treasured throughout childhood and passed down to future generations.  Boys and girls will love the expertly crafted porcelain bank that's carefully hand painted.  


Place your favorite photo in the adorable frame the holds a 4x6 photo of a precious little one.  Noah's menagerie graces the corner of the frame which would be a sweet accent for a nursery room or the desk of a parent or grandparent.  The frame is made with durable ceramic and is carefully hand painted.

Why not decorate a little boy or girl's nursery with the faithful spirit of Noah and his ark filled with all of God's creatures? The musical snow globe plays the tune "Jesus Loves Me." The 5 inch high snow globe is crafted in cold-cast resin and carefully hand painted.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, May 4, 2018

Reflecting on Turning 30

In 4 months from tomorrow, I turn 30. When I stop to think about that, it honestly is a little scary.  It makes me feel old.  Everyone says that age is just a number, and hopefully I can keep that saying in mind on a more frequent basis.



It feels like just yesterday I was in high school and going to the movies with my friends.  It wasn't as recent as I imagine though since high school was 13 years ago now.  I can't believe that! 

I'm in a place in my life where people are first getting married and having children, so it's not the norm where I live to be married in your early 20's and have kids right away.  My friends are all significantly older than me and chose to have children later in life.  I like the fact that I had Scarlett at 26 and will be always be a younger mom.  

I met my husband when I was 19 and we've been together ever since.  We celebrate 5 years of marriage this year and 11 years together in total.  That also boggles my mind.  My birthday is 5 days after our anniversary.   The years just fly on by! 

I'm happy with where life has taken me thus far, and I did a lot before having a child.  I went to college in NYC, worked many jobs, met a lot of people, and just experienced life in my 20's.  I've traveled and seen the world and I hope to do even more traveling in this next decade of my life.  You could say that I'm not the same person in some ways as I was five years ago, and that's ok.  

Life is all about learning and growing in order to be the best person possible.  Certain events and people shape your life for the better, or sometimes in a not so negative light.  I think it's important to learn from those times and use them as life lessons.  

I hope that my 30's bring lots of happiness, health, and great surprises along the way.  Goodbye 20's, it's time for a new chapter of life! 



Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Pet Messes Are No Match for Libman! #CelebratePetsWithLibman

This post is sponsored by The Libman Company but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

We've now had Lynnie for almost 5 years.  Time has flown by and she's truly a member of our family and very much loved! When I get home and see her smiling face and wagging tail, it makes my day instantly better! There's nothing like the love a pet has for their family. If you do have a pet, pet messes are inevitable and it's essential you always have the right cleaning tools for the job.



The Libman Company knows their way around cleaning products; for 120 years, the family-owned business has made quality their priority.  The brand offers the finest USA-made brooms, brushes, mops, and cleaning tools.  May marks National Pet Month, and messes are one thing that makes our four legged friends less adorable.  Nobody enjoys cleaning up after their pets, but those cute little faces are irresistible! Thanks to Libman's wonderful mops, pet messes can be cleaned up in a breeze so you have more time with your furry baby.

I'm very lucky that Lynnie doesn't go to the bathroom too much in the house.  She has gotten sick a few times on the hardwood floors and thrown up, which was a lot easier to clean up than on the carpet!  She does have some off days where she has to go to the bathroom and can't let us know fast enough and has an accident.  It's rare, but I do like to be prepared for when those times come.  What she does do a lot is track in dirt and mud on her paws from being outside.  As much as I love her cute little paws, those muddy footprints on my hardwood floors have to go!


For all pet related messes, Libman's Freedom Spray Mop will get any job done whether big or small.  This fabulous mop has a neck that swivels 360 degrees for extra control to reach tough spots like under furniture.  It comes with a thick microfiber pad that cleans deep and is machine washable up to 100 times.  There's no special solution or cleaners to buy, you can use whatever you normally use to clean your floors.  An added bonus is that since the pad is machine washable, you don't have to buy any pad or cleaner refills, which saves you money!  Whatever floor type you have is ideal for the Libman Freedom Spray Mop, it tackles messes on wood floors, laminate, tile, marble, linoleum, stone, and more.



You'll be able to get double duty out of this mop from not only cleaning pet messes, but children's messes too.  Scarlett is always dropping food on the floor or spilling something.  Thanks to the Freedom spray mop's large pad surface, it can clean your floor quickly.  My dog and daughter can play on the floor together and I don't have to worry about them being around unwanted dirt either.

The mop works wonderfully and my floors shine and look their best all the time now.  Make sure you use a cleaner that makes your house smell like a tropical island, those are my favorite! With Libman, you'll have more time to spend with your dog and family, and they'll appreciate that!

Since it's National Pet Month, I'll make sure to give Lynnie extra hugs, belly rubs, and treats.  What will you do for your dog?

Make sure you take advantage of the $3-off product coupon when you sign up for the Libman newsletter on their website! 

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Scarlett's Spring Photoshoot!

The weather has been glorious here lately in New England.  After school today, I decided to take advantage of the warm weather and get Scarlett outside for some spring pictures.  I'm lucky that she enjoys being in front of the camera.  Hope you enjoy the shots!












Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Make Breakfast Tasty With Instant Pot Egg Bites

For my birthday last year, my mom got me an Instant Pot as a birthday gift.  It was a fantastic gift and I've used it on a frequent basis ever since.

If you do own that fabulous pressure cooker, I have a great breakfast idea for you that's not only quick to make, but tasty too!

Instant Pot egg bites are essentially a mini version of an omelette in a fun and portable size. You can make these in advance for breakfast and they can be reheated in just seconds in the microwave.  Children and adults alike will look forward to these mini yummies paired with some fruit or yogurt.


What I love about these egg bites is that you can customize them to your taste or your family's taste.  Put in peppers, ham, onions, cheese, spinach, the possibilities are truly endless! I like to keep mine simple so I stick to cheddar cheese and bacon.

Making the egg bites takes virtually no time.  Pour a cup of water on the bottom of the pot and then set the trivet that the Instant Pot comes with on top.  You'll need a silicone baby food mold for this recipe.  Make sure you grease the mold well beforehand.  Beat four eggs in a mixing bowl with cheese and whatever other add-in's appeal to you.  Pour the egg mixture into each mold about 3/4 full.

Next, cover the top of the mold with tin foil and place it on the trivet.  Put the Instant Pot lid on and set the steam setting for 8 minutes.  Once the timer goes off, let it naturally release for 10 minutes.  Then release any remaining pressure and take the mold out.  Let the egg bites cool and then they should effortlessly slide out of the molds.

Everyone is always busy during the week and these yummies make a quick and easy breakfast that everyone can enjoy.


Monday, April 23, 2018

The Perfect Dessert for Mother's Day

With summer on the horizon, I have one thing on my brain and it's lemons! Lemon is the perfect flavor to beat the heat during the warmer months of the year.  Lemonade, lemon ices, lemon water, lemon iced tea, and of course lemon desserts are all just fabulous.  If you're looking for a light and airy and perfectly lemony treat for Mom's special day, I have just the recipe for you.



It's time to delight your belly with a Lemon Bar Cheesecake.  What more could you want out of life, right? It's easy to make and Mom will absolutely love it, and I'm sure you will too.

Ingredients:
2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cold butter, cubed
2 egg yolks
1 to 2 tbsp ice-cold water
4 (8-oz) packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
4 large eggs
2 tablespoons vanilla extract
2 cups Quick and Easy Lemon curd, divided
Candied Lemon Slices (optional)

Steps:

1. Pulse first 3 ingredients in a food processor 3 to 4 times or just until blended.  Add butter, and pulse 5 or 6 times or util crumbly.  Whisk together egg yolks and 1 tbsp ice-cold water in a small bowl; add to butter mixture, and process until dough forms a ball and pulls away from the sides of the bowl.   Add up to 1 tbsp remaining ice-cold water, 1 tsp. at a time, if necessary.  Shape dough into a disk; wrap in plastic wrap.  Chill 4 to 24 hours.  

2.  Roll dough into a 14-inch circle on a lightly floured surface.  Fit dough into a lightly greased 9-inch dark springform pan, gently pressing on bottom and up sides of pan; trim and discards excess dough.  Chill 30 minutes. 

3. Preheat oven to 325F.  Beat cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer 3 minutes or until smooth.  Gradually add granulated sugar, beating until blended.  Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until yellow disappears after each addition.  Beat in vanilla. 

4.  Pour 2/3 of cheesecake battery (about 4 cups) into prepared crust; dollop 1 cup lemon curd over batter in pan and gently swirl with a knife.  Spoon the remaining batter into pan.  

5. Bake at 325F for 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes or just until center is set.  Turn oven off and let cheesecake stand in oven with door closed for 15 minutes.  Remove cheesecake from oven and gently run a knife around outer edge of cheesecake to loosen the sides from the pan.  (Do not remove sides of pan). Cool completely in a pan on a wire rack for about 1 hour.  Cover and chill for 8 to 24 hours. 

Your family will absolutely love this recipe and ask you to make it time and time again. Who knows, it might just be your new go-to dessert for all holidays and occasions! 



*Recipe taken from MyRecipes.com*

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Just Because You're A Parent Doesn't Mean You Have to Lose Your Identity

My husband and I were together for 7 years before Scarlett was born.  We had seven years of it just being us, and sharing life and memories together.  There were no nighttime feedings or parenting woes and we had all the time in the world for each other.



When I became a mom back in 2014, it was both a scary and exciting time. Jay and I were responsible for taking care of an 8 pound 4 once pooping and eating machine.  As time went on, Scarlett got older and I was able to have a little bit more time for myself.  She would play on the carpet with toys while I watched.  Nowadays, she's too mobile and active to be left unsupervised for a long period of time.  

I think the hardest part of parenting thus far has been making sure that my identity as a person, not just a mom, hasn't gone away.  It's very easy to get swept up in motherhood and only live life for your children.  I try to make time for my hobbies when Scarlett goes to bed at night.  I don't have any friends who don't have children at this point, so our playdates and outings with the kids consist of talking about them and comparing stories.  People who don't have children don't understand what this life is like and cannot relate.  When I do meet up with my friends without the children, it's very nice to have adult conversation and get a break from the little ones.  

Motherhood is a busy, never-ending world of preparing meals, diaper changes, bottles, cleaning, laundry, sleepless nights, and homework checking.  There's nothing wrong with taking some time to yourself to do something that's important to you.  Whether you want to finish that book you keep putting down, knit a scarf, garden, or anything else that is meaningful to you, make sure you do it.  When you have "me" time, you'll feel better about yourself and in turn you'll be a better parent and person.  At night when Scarlett is sleeping I enjoy catching up on my favorite TV shows and relaxing with my husband.  I'm very tired at night from being with Scarlett one-on-one for 12 hours a day, and I'm desperate for adult conversation.

I try to have a date night with my husband once a month.  We go out to dinner or see a movie and just enjoy the time together.  We're never gone that many hours, but we appreciate the time to reconnect and have some time away from our child.  After all, we were together for so many years before Scarlett was born.  It's healthy and essential to remember why you're a couple and why you love each other.  It's inevitable that the children will come up in conversation, but try to savor the time with just your partner.

Don't lose yourself in motherhood.  There's plenty you can do to avoid this like doing an activity that you loved before having children.  Don't forget to ask yourself what you can do to make you happier at home or at work.  Some women enjoy volunteering to help benefit others.  Having just an hour or two of time for yourself everyday will make you a happy and satisfied person.  

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Plans For the Summer

It feels like it's been cold for a long time now and I'm looking forward to warmer weather.  Even though it's spring, we haven't had much warm weather lately.  We've had snow and cold temperatures for longer then necessary in my opinion.  As the temperatures heat up over the next few weeks, I'm ready for summer and everything it has to offer.



Scarlett's last day of school is in mid June.  This year of preschool flew by and her end of the year party is just in a few weeks! She'll be going to camp for about 10 days this summer and I know she'll be so thrilled.  In-between going to camp, we'll be taking her to a special kid's concert and also Grandma's for a month long visit.  I'm sure we'll be able to fit in a water park visit or something else fun along the way.  

Those are our major plans, but since the weather will be nice all summer I'm sure we'll have plenty of outdoor playdates and trips to the beach and pool too.  What are your summer plans? I'm ready to stop wearing a jacket everyday!

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Children Will Have Fun Outside with Froggy's Fog Bubble Machine

Now that the temperatures are warming up, the weather is ideal for being outside.  During the warmer months of the year, Scarlett enjoys playing with sidewalk chalk, running through the sprinklers, and using her water table for starters.  I can't say that I'm going to miss the cold temperatures, I'm completely ready for shorts and sandals at this point!



Froggy's Fog is a company that provides special effect machines to Broadway shows, concerts and amusement parks.  You can now enjoy all of the benefits of those unique machines at home thanks to an at-home product called Fobbles.  Fobbles is a 4 in 1 home unit that not provides not only bubbles but fog, haze, and fog-filled bubbles.  The product takes family fun and party entertainment to the next level and can be enjoyed throughout the year.  Fobbles is lightweight, compact, easy to operate and affordable.  In addition, it delivers water-based, non-toxic fog, haze, bubbles, and fog-filled bubbles.

The machine would not only be ideal for summer fun for kids, but would be equally as great for Halloween fun with the fog and haze feature.  There's always a use for Froggy's Fog!


Even though it's been spring for a few weeks, the weather has not been spring-like at all.  We've had week after week of snow storms, and today is the warmest it's been so far at 71.  I decided to take advantage of the weather and fire up the bubble machine for Scarlett.

My tiny tot loves bubbles and always goes nuts for them when they are blown or produced through a bubble machine at a party.  I knew she'd freak out at the thought of having tons of bubbles at her disposal whenever!


The black unit is compact and doesn't take up much space.  It comes with a fan, instruction booklet, and two jugs of bubble and fog fluid.  The fan is to aide the bubbles in blowing upwards.  I don't know what it is about bubbles but they make children light up with joy instantly!

I had no issues setting up the machine, and as soon as I poured the bubble fluid into the bubble reservoir those round bubbles flowed out! Scarlett's eyes lit up like the fourth of July and she just couldn't stop laughing!

The bubbles were large and flowed freely through the air.  My girl had fun running after the bubbles and was entertained for quite some time.


The jug of bubble fluid is large and will last a long time since you only need to use a small amount to fill the reservoir.  Once you're done using the machine, it's easy to clean and store in the garage for future use.

I have not tried the fog or haze feature yet since I knew the bubble feature would take precedence.  Scarlett's friends will be so excited to see our newest toy in the backyard, I can't wait to see their reactions when they come over! Of course I'd like to use the haze and fog feature for Halloween when the trick or treater's come over too.

We spend a lot of time outdoors during the warmer months of the year and I can guarantee we'll have this machine fired up frequently throughout the summer.

If you're looking for a unique or untraditional birthday gift for a young child, Froggy's Fog bubble machine would make the perfect gift.

*DISCLOSURE* Thank you to Froggy's Fog for providing a product sample in order to facilitate this post.  All thoughts are strictly my own. 

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Play Smart Work Books Are A Wonderful Educational Tool For Children

Since Scarlett started preschool in September 2016, she's learned far beyond the basics of colors, shapes, and numbers.  My tiny tot knows about the weather, plants and animals, and much more.  It's always interesting to see what's on the school's weekly agenda for the children to be taught.  Scarlett loves school and shocks me with what she knows that I had no clue about!

Play Smart Workbooks are time-tested and kid-approved in Japan, and now they're award-winners in the US!  The workbooks are geared for ages 2, 3, and 4 and offer children the chance to learn while having fun.  Older children can focus on vocabulary building, math, pre-reading skills, fine motor skills, decision making, and more.  Younger tots can benefit from problem solving skills, picture puzzles, and color and shape pictures just to name a few.

Whether your child is in preschool or not, these books are a wonderful resource to keep at home to reinforce what is taught at school.  Any of these titles would make ideal educational gifts for children for any occasion.  It's never too late or too early to learn!


Scarlett was sent five workbooks that all focused on different skill areas.  The workbook for ages 4+ featured mazes, connect the dots, drawing and coloring.  Three workbooks geared towards ages 3+ highlighted picture puzzles, matching games, art projects, drawing, cutting, counting games, and mazes! Lastly, one workbook for ages 2+ was included that was on a more simple level.

I was thrilled at everything she received because learning at an early age is important to my husband and I.  Scarlett was excited and ready to get started immediately.  Each workbook includes 80+ colorful stickers and a wipe-clean game board inside that coordinates with the stickers.


What I like about the workbooks is that the illustrations are colorful and really draw a child right in.  What child wouldn't be interested to use their creativity to color a butterfly's wings anyway they want to portray a pattern? The activities are interesting and not your everyday standard ones.  For example, using scissor skills to give a boy a haircut however they'd like.  I know Scarlett would really enjoy that!


Scarlett took to the books right away and was enthusiastic about drawing a line to the matching vehicles on the page, and using deductive reasoning to figure out which item was bigger or smaller.  I had to help her with some pages but she was thrilled when she was able to do some things herself.  She's very independent and loves when she's able to do things without help!

There's really an activity or game for any stage of learning whether you're learning ABC's, or ready to do matching games.  I like that the workbooks grow with your child and they won't tire of them easily.  I can easily see Scarlett having interest in these for some time to come.

If you're doing some summer traveling with your tots, these workbooks easily fit in a carry on or tote bag to be brought to any destination around the world.  An added plus is that these books allow parent and child to spend quality time together.  What could be better than learning while making memories?

*DISCLOSURE* Thank you to Play Smart Work Books for providing product samples in order to facilitate these posts.  All thoughts are strictly my own. 

Things To Do In El Paso


Things To Do In El Paso


El Paso, Texas is a city that often gets overshadowed by other Texas cities like Houston and San Antonio.  However, El Paso is actually a pretty remarkable city in its own right. From scenic mountains to historic landmarks (not to mention delicious Tex-Mex food!), El Paso is an incredible city.  After seeing how many fun and interesting things this city has to offer, you’ll be looking at homes for sale in El Paso in no time!  Here are a few of the best things to do in El Paso.

Museums

There is no shortage of museums in El Paso, which is just one of the many things that makes the city so interesting.  The El Paso Museum of History is a great place to see El Paso artifacts and learn more about El Paso’s history. The El Paso Museum of Archaeology focuses on the prehistory and culture of the city, and visitors can observe different artifacts from prehistoric times.  Another big draw is the El Paso Holocaust Museum and Study Center, which focuses on educating visitors and paying tribute to those who lost their lives in the Holocaust.  With so many different museums to choose from, you’re sure to find one that interests you.

Food

El Paso is famous for Tex-Mex, a style of cuisine that combines both Mexican and American food to create a unique dining experience.  There are countless Tex-Mex restaurants in El Paso, and it’s definitely one of the most popular types of food in the city. L&J Cafe, which has been around since 1927, serves amazing Mexican food and continues to be a favorite among both locals and tourists.  Kiki’s Restaurant & Bar boasts a menu full of delicious Tex-Mex food, and patrons love the restaurant’s cozy, laid-back feel. Whatever you’re in the mood for, El Paso restaurants have got you covered.

Outdoor Attractions

El Paso is one of the most scenic cities in Texas, so what better way to take in the beautiful landscapes than by taking a drive to Scenic Point?  Locals and tourists alike have been known to love the view from the overlook, especially during sunrise and sunset. Other popular sightseeing activities include the Wyler Aerial Tramway, the Hueco Tanks State Historic Site, and the Franklin Mountains State Park.