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.  

Monday, April 9, 2018

Grill Lovers Unite!

As warmer temperatures are on the horizon, all I can think about is firing up the grill and having a BBQ!

Each summer, my husband loves to grill chicken, steak, shrimp and even fish on our Weber Grill for dinner.  He brushes on a mixture of herbs and spices which make everything taste delicious.  We pair the meal with watermelon and some yummy sides.  It's always fun to eat outside on the deck and enjoy the weather.  Scarlett is a big fan of BBQ's and I can't wait to have our first one of the season hopefully in a few weeks.



What are some of your favorite things to grill? Don't forget something sweet to round out the meal with! 


Saturday, April 7, 2018

Scarlett's A Mini Fashionista

You know how some children don't care what they wear no matter what it is? Yeah, I wish I knew what that was like!


Recently, Scarlett has a huge opinion on her clothes and it's been harder to get her dressed these days.  Heaven forbid that I offer her the wrong pair of pants or shirt, she will tell me it's ugly and cry! It's almost as ridiculous as it sounds, truly.  She seems to gravitate more towards shirts that have a ruffle on the bottom, or what she calls a "tutu." Not everything is available with a ruffle on it! 

This is a new challenge I'm struggling with and I hope it passes quickly.  At bedtime, I usually have Scarlett pick out her clothes for the following morning.  If she is unsure of what to choose, I give two options to make it easier.  Please note the keyword "easier", but in reality she sometimes doesn't like either choice!  If I force her to choose one, she ends up very upset and I don't feel that it's fair to make her wear something she really dislikes.  She finally will settle on something and by that point I feel like I survived a war.

I'm worried about the summer clothes I bought for her as she's already deemed a few things I've showed her unacceptable.  Wonderful! Last summer she wore whatever I dressed her in without a peep.  Can we go back to that time?

Anybody else have fashion struggles with their children?

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Best Snacks for Traveling With A Toddler

If you have children, you are well aware of meltdowns and tantrums caused by hunger. Children need to snack constantly to refuel as they burn a lot of energy.  No parent wants to be in the crosshairs of a toddler meltdown stemming from lack of food.



Scarlett has done her fair share of traveling in her 3 years of life whether it's on the plane to Grandma's, or long car trips to visit relatives.  It's essential to always have snacks to not only calm her down and keep her happy, but to keep her full in-between meals.  For my baby shower, I received small multi-colored containers for kids that come in different sizes that are perfect for snacking on-the-go.  They get a lot of use and are ideal for throwing in a diaper bag or tote bag.  

1. Crackers

Crackers are truly a godsend.  No matter if they are wheat or cheese flavored, they are always happily accepted and devoured by my child.  Scarlett's favorites are Cheez-It's, Ritz's Mini Peanut Butter Crackers, and Wheat Thins. 

Dried fruit:

Scarlett can eat her weight in fruit if given the opportunity! Her love of grapes, blueberries, and apples knows no bounds.  Some dried fruit packs a ton of sugar so I like to limit it when possible.  I usually only give dried fruit when we're traveling since it's a treat.  Scarlett is partial to banana chips and apple rings.  Raisins and yogurt raisins are also big hits in my household too.  You can even do fruit bars or granola bars with fruit as well. 

Packing perishable snacks: 

I don't have much experience with traveling with perishable items, but I do pack Scarlett's lunch for school with an ice pack.  If you are traveling with a cooler, how about considering cheese sticks and yogurt tubes? As long as they stay properly chilled, your little one will be happy.

Pouches:

When Scarlett was younger, she used to eat the fruit and veggie pouches daily.  While she doesn't eat them anymore, she does enjoy the applesauce pouches.  These pouches are amazing and are far less messy than eating a cup of applesauce with a spoon.  I've seen different brands make them and they come unflavored and flavored.  Scarlett loves the berry applesauce and would eat the entire box in one day if given the opportunity.

Chips:

While I don't generally let Scarlett snack on regular potato chips, she does love veggie chips and Pirate's Booty.  These snacks are not only delicious but are half the fat and calories of normal potato chips.  While she's happily chomping away, I'm happy that it's a win-win snack for both mom and toddler.

I hope this list has given you some insight as to what to pack for your toddler for an upcoming trip.  Happy travels! 



Thursday, March 29, 2018

Funstra Offers a Toy Paradise For Children Of All Ages

Now that Scarlett is 3, her fun personality really shines through.  She enjoys so many things from singing and dancing to drawing and being silly.  Everyday is always an adventure with her! It's exciting to see how she grows and changes all the time and develops new interests.



Funstra is an Australian toy store that offers character toys, games, gifts and collectibles from popular movies, cartoons and TV shows for children and kids at heart.  The online store is truly a toy paradise for children and has a wide variety of products available.  You can choose from Mickey Mouse and Sesame Street to Doc McStuffins and Star Wars and everything in between.  Kids will enjoy stuffed toys, action figures, bedding, stickers, playsets and much more! There's truly something for everyone's interests at Funstra.  Keep the company in mind for birthday presents for a child or even for the child at heart. 

One of Scarlett's big loves since last summer has been The Wiggles.  If you aren't familiar with The Wiggles they are an Australian based children's band that performs around the world singing and dancing.  Their demographic is preschool aged children and I have to say that my tiny tot really enjoys them! We discovered their shows on Hulu last summer and it's been a constant love affair ever since.  Their catchy songs instantly get stuck in your head, and we're lucky enough to see them on tour in June! 

For whatever reason, there's really not any Wiggles merchandise available in the United States.  Funstra sells Wiggles merchandise that is available to be shipped to the US and it surely makes life more exciting for Scarlett.  Plus it's special to not have items that are readily accessible in America!

Scarlett is a big fan of Emma who is the only female member of the group.  She loves her hairbows, dancing, and of course her costumes. I'm happy she's interested in a wholesome figure who is kid-friendly. 

I was shocked how quickly the package arrived! In just 6 days from being sent from the land down under, it arrived at my door.  My tiny tot was sent a large Emma doll, an Emma insulated lunch bag, an Emma ballerina dress up costume, and a Wiggles lunch box.  On my own, I had previously bought a Wigges cutlery set and a mini push Emma doll before asking Funstra if they'd like to work with me.  Scarlett was thrilled with the items she received and I was thankful for the company's generosity.  She knew the package had Wiggles items in it and couldn't open it fast enough!




Immediately, Scarlett wanted to put on the Emma costume.  She's seen Emma in pictures wearing this dress before and knew it was related to her.  Scarlett instantly started taking off her clothes to change into it and I had to laugh! I went to get her a black hair bow to match the outfit, we're still working on getting a black and yellow bow.



The costume was made well and I could tell from quality materials.  Since it's for ages 3-5, it's slightly big on Scarlett but nothing too bad.  She has some room to grow into it which means a lot of time to wear it! The skirt features a lot of tulle making it pouf out and Scarlett enjoyed spinning around the room to see it flow out.  I have to admit that the costume looks just like Emma's and the black and yellow is bright and vivid.  From the detail on the skirt to the Wiggles logo on the arm, no detail is left out.  I could tell Scarlett loved wearing it and has yet to change out of it!



Scarlett really enjoyed the two Emma dolls and hugged the bigger one and told it that she loved it.  Imagine how she'd act if she met Emma in person? She'd probably go nuts! The smaller one is perfect for traveling with and will most likely be coming with us when we fly to see Grandma next week.  The doll truly represents Emma well from her black and yellow bow to her red pigtails and of course her Wiggles costume! Scarlett enjoys touching the doll's hair and talking to it.  It's safe to say that the big Emma doll will find a new home in her bed tonight.  These soft and cuddly dolls are perfect for any Emma fans.

Since Scarlett sometimes stays for extended lunch at preschool once a week, she brings a packed lunch from home.  I know she'd be more than willing to trade her traditional lunchbox for the Emma one along with the Wiggles sandwich container and fork/spoon set!


The lunchbox is insulated and offers a spacious interior for holding a lunch to make any toddler happy.  On the outside, a bright pink background hosts Emma wearing a ballet costume and dancing.  There's nothing Scarlett doesn't love about this, of course.  With a yellow handle to match Emma's signature color, it makes it easy for little hands to hold.  As a parent, the easy to wipe clean material makes for one happy mama.

Will it be peanut butter or turkey and cheese? That's the question Scarlett will be answering when I put her sandwich in the Wiggles sandwich container.  All four members of the group are featured on the outside of the container in the legendary Big Red Car.  The colors are bright, bold, and really pop.  The closures on the outside are easy to open and close and remain securely locked, ensuring the food stays inside.

Lastly, a meal isn't complete without Wiggles cutlery to add extra fun! The fork and spoon set has a small cartoon version of each member's face.  Scarlett enjoyed pointing to each face and saying who it was.  I know we'll be using the fork or the spoon tonight at dinner depending on what I make her.  The set is dishwasher safe and I can guarantee that it will be washed over and over to constantly ensure it's clean for Scarlett!

My Wiggly tot is very happy with all of her new items and it has truly made her day! I love to see her enthusiastic and The Wiggles always bring her joy.  If you're looking to make a child smile in the near future, it's time to visit Funstra to have a package show up at their door soon!

*DISCLOSURE* Thank you to Funstra for providing product samples in order to facilitate this post. All thoughts are strictly my own. 





Tuesday, March 27, 2018

A Spinach, Apple, and Pecan Salad Will Make Your Belly Happy

There's nothing I love during the warmer months of the year than salad.  The temps are still cool here in New England, but warmer weather is on the horizon.  When it's hot outside nothing is more refreshing than a crisp and cool salad paired with a glass of iced tea.

Check out this fabulous spinach salad that combines apples and pecan for a crunch you won't be able to resist.



Ingredients:
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon prepared mustard
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 golden delicious apple, halved, cored, thinly sliced
1/4 cup red onion, cut in thin strips
3/4 lb fresh spinach, washed, stems removed, leaves torn
1/2 cup toasted pecans


Steps:
In a serving bowl whisk together oil, vinegar, mustard, sugar, salt and pepper until thick. Add the apple and the onion.  Make sure to toss until apples and onions are covered with dressing.  Place the spinach on top then the pecans.  Just before serving, toss all together. 

Feel free to change or substitute anything in this salad.  It would make a great side dish or even main entree if you're looking for a lighter option.  Serve with a roll to make it the ultimate crowd-pleasing dish.

*Recipe taken from Food.com*

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

The Importance of True Friends

This year is a big birthday for me.  I turn the big 30 and it's a little intimidating when I stop to think about it.  Honestly, it feels like just yesterday I was still in high school.  Isn't that what everyone says though?

In the last ten years alone, I've had a lot of friends come in and out of my life.  Some people are only meant to be in your life for short periods of time, while others stick around for longer.  On the other hand, there are some people who shouldn't be in your life at all, and it's important to realize that early on.  Some friends show their true colors and surprise you and sometimes those colors aren't too beautiful.



Yesterday I was thinking that at this point in my life my circle of friends consists of all parents  It makes sense because we can all relate to each other as we journey through parenthood.  It's hard for someone who isn't a parent to connect with me on the same level as someone who is.  Plus, people without children are usually not interested to hear about my child or see her latest creation at school.

It's not easy to make friends by any means.  Not everyone is open to meeting new people and some are comfortable with who they already have.  A friend is someone who listens to you, gives advice when asked, and is generally happy to be in your company.  Those are the friends I'm most interested in having.  I'm extremely loyal to my friends and really do everything I can to be there for them.  I'm generally interested in their life and want to be updated on anything important that happens.

Let's face it though, everyone gets busy from time to time.  Families and jobs can take over and social plans sometimes have to be put on the back burner.  Don't let too much time pass before you exchange versions of "let's hang out, or let's make plans" over and over and nothing ever comes to fruition.  It's important to make time for friends as much as you can.  If someone is really interested in being your friend, they will make time for you.  

I have a few friends who all get together once a month for dinner.  It's nice to have something to look forward to each month, and of course just have a break from everything for a few hours.  Dinner and drinks with adult conversation is something I can always go for.  I'm lucky that everyone in the group generally enjoys each other's company and we all get along well. 

Of course there are some friends in my group that I see more than others, but I know that if I needed anything they'd always be there for me.  Don't forget that quality is always better than quantity.  




Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Clogged Pipes Are No Match for Roto-Rooter!

There's 3 people in my house who use the shower and sink on a daily basis.  Both Scarlett and myself have long hair which easily clogs the drain pipes.  My husband shaves in the bathroom sink every morning which adds to the buildup.  Due to all of this, we regularly have to clear out the pipes to keep clogs at bay.  There's nothing more unsanitary than standing water!



Roto-Rooter is the #1 plumbing and water restoration company.  To make things easier and save you a big bill from a plumber's visit, the company offers a Gel Clog Remover that you can use at home.  The three main things that clog a drain pipe are soap, grease, and hair.  Roto-Rooter's Gel Clog Remover attacks the source of the clog with a formula of up to 25% more clog-busting active ingredients than any other national brand.


We have double sinks in my master bathroom and recently my husband's sink needed to unclogged. Luckily, the Gel Clog Remover came to the rescue to kick that pesky clog to the curb.  What I love most about the product is that it's easy to use.  There's no special equipment needed, just simply shake the bottle and pour half of the contents into the clogged drain.  While you wait for the clog to be attacked, you can do another task.  After the allotted time is up, run hot water to flush out the drain pipe to make sure everything is running clear again.

I love how fast the Gel Clog Remover works and the results last a long time.  Clogs can happen when you least expect them, so it's essential to always have a bottle of Roto-Rooter's Gel Clog Remover in your home. 

Wake Up To The Reasons Your Little One Is So Often Tired In The Day

Us parents are never happier than when our kids sleep through don’t wake up early. Isn’t it the best feeling? Any mom who gets the chance to sleep past 7 AM should count her lucky stars. It’s certainly better than the 5 AM wake up calls many parents face.

But, what happens if your little one sleeps well, yet still feels tired through the day? Needing to nap is nothing unusual for youngsters. But, excessive tiredness after a good night’s sleep is a sign all’s not right. If this is something you’ve noticed with your little one, consider whether these reasons are to blame.

Not enough sleep

Often, we assume our little ones are sleeping. After all, most kids are pretty vocal when they can’t sleep. But, it’s possible your child is away, and you just don’t know about it. It may be that they stay up late playing with games of watching movies. Or, it may be that they just can’t get comfortable and that stops them sleeping well. The best thing to do here is to remove distractions. In extreme cases, you might want to take that television out of their room when you put them to bed. If comfort is the issue, head to sites like Advisor Top and read up on memory foam mattress which provide added comfort. Or, attempt to adjust the position of their bed. Small steps like these could make all the difference.

Too much sleep


Confusing, we know, but too much sleep can also wreak havoc. Think about how you feel after a lie in. Sleeping too long can leave us more groggy than we would be otherwise. So, though you consider those lie-ins a blessing, it may be time to get into the habit of waking your kid earlier. Bear in mind that getting the balance right here is essential. Wake them too early, and they won’t get the sleep they need. As such, you don’t want to push their natural wake up by any more than an hour or so. Try it out for a week and see if it makes a difference.

The wrong diet

It’s also worth remembering that the wrong food can cause fatigue. A diet heavy in processed foods could result in issues such as zinc deficiency. And, zinc is essential to energy levels. To make sure your youngsters don’t fall foul to this, feed them plenty of veggies and home cooked food. If you do your research, you can be sure to provide them with all the nutrients they need to keep them going for longer.

Something amiss with health

While tiredness is rarely anything to worry about, there may be a health issue at play here. If none of the above seems to be the issue, it’s worth taking your child to a doctor for some simple tests. Problems such as allergies or undiagnosed asthma can lead to increased fatigue. Addressing these issues, then, could give your little one a new lease of life.

Saturday, March 17, 2018

LilGadgets Headphones Are Perfect For Kids On The Go

Now that Scarlett is three, she really has an interest in certain music and TV shows.  While her and I share some musical favorites, she of course gravitates towards children's tunes.  I know as Scarlett grows, her tastes and interests will change.  Headphones will always be there to keep her tuned into her entertainment needs!



LilGadgets are high-quality high-performance headphones designed just for kids starting at 3 years old.  They are bold, but subtle while still youthful.  They are safe for little ears while out-performing the status quo.  The headphones come in five style and color options giving a choice for every boy or girl.

Parents will enjoy the fact that the headphones are made with kid safe technology offering volume limitations and passive notice reduction.  Due to this, they are perfect to use on a long road trip or flight.  Even on a loud flight, children will be able to hear sound perfectly without maxing the volume.  Some models offer Shareport tech meaning you can connect multiple headphones to a single device, making sharing much easier. 

Spring Break is right around the corner and I'm sure many families have plans to travel. While we're not going away this time around, we will be going to Florida in July.  My parents live in the sunshine state and we usually go for about a month.

Since Scarlett is young and doesn't have an extremely long attention span, we always have to pack items to keep her entertained on the flight.  Snacks, books, crayons, and her tablet are just a few things in her backpack to keep my tiny tot happy.  We recently got her a tablet and we only allow it on plane rides or long car rides.  It's a lifesaver and it keeps her quiet and focused, which makes me one happy mama.


Scarlett was thrilled when a pair of Connect+Style headphones showed up for her in the mail in a beautiful shade of pink.  This pink wasn't just any pink by any means, but it was bold and vibrant.  It certainly reminded me of Scarlett, feminine and fun!

The first thing I noticed about these headphones was that they did not come with the cord attached.  I was very happy about this because most headphone cords always end up knotted and tangled.  Everyone knows how annoying that is.  The cord is separate from the headphones and can be attached to it upon use.  A handy storage bag is also included to keep everything together and reduces the risk of your headphones being misplaced.


Scarlett was instantly interested in trying the headphones on and testing them out.  I gave her my phone to watch some kiddy videos while she used them.  She had no problem understanding what the purpose of the headphones were for, and that she needed to keep them on to hear her video.  What I noticed as soon as I put them on her were that they were extremely padded on the ears for maximum comfort.

The headphones fit her very well, were secure, and did not slip or fall off at all.  We've tried other children's headphones before that did not fit this well.  She said the volume was at a perfect level and was not too loud or too soft.  I put them to my ear to hear how the audio sounded and it came in crystal clear.  I know these headphone will be perfect for bringing on the plane with us to Florida.  


I was happy that Scarlett was so interested in the headphones and really enjoyed using them.  Since her model of headphones has the Shareport feature, her friends will be able to tune into her music and shows at the same time.  

I'm always most interested in Scarlett having items that can be used for years on end, and these headphones certainly fit that bill.  I know she'll be able to enjoy and use the headphones for years to come.  It'll be fun to see what she's watching or listening to in a year from now or even five years!

Keep LilGadgets headphones in mind to put in an Easter basket for your child, or even a birthday gift for a lucky boy or girl.  You know they'll absolutely love them!

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

Monday, March 12, 2018

Bunny Pancakes for Easter Morning Breakfast Is a Great Idea

Easter is just around the corner! If you haven't started planning your menu for the occasion, I'm sure you'll be doing so soon.  Bunnies are everywhere and I've been noticing all the fabulous chocolate eggs and Easter treats that are in the grocery store too!

If you're looking for a fun twist on a traditional pancake breakfast to signify Easter, I have a unique recipe the whole family will love.  It's always fun to get into the holiday spirit no matter which one it is!
I'm up for pancakes any time of day, especially if they include add-in's like chocolate chips or blueberries. Pour some heated syrup over the top of those golden brown circles of heaven and you've got yourself quite a meal.  There's nothing like making Fluffy Bunny Pancakes on Easter morning! 

*Recipe taken from Taste of Home

If you don't have a lot of time, feel free to use a pancake mix instead of a homemade recipe.  

Ingredients:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
3/4 cup milk
1/4 cup butter, melted 

Toppings:
Banana slices, mini chocolate chips, whipped cream and sweetened shredded coconut.


Steps:

1. Preheat griddle over medium-high heat.  Whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.  Combine egg, milk and melted butter; stir into dry ingredients just until moistened.

2.  For each funny, make a pancake 4 inches wide for the body, a pancake 2-1/2 inches wide for the head, two small oval shaped pancakes for the feet, and two small triangular pancakes for the ears.  Spoon batter onto griddle; cook until bubbles form on top of pancakes.  Turn; cook until second side is golden brown.

3. To form bunny, place ears at the top of a plate.  Place head slightly overlapping the bottom of the ears; top with body slightly overlapping head and feet slightly overlapping body.  Place a banana slice on each foot, arrange mini chocolate chips at the end of each foot for toes.  Dollop whipped cream on body just above the feet, sprinkle with coconut for the tail.  Serve immediately.  

These bunnies will make anyone smile no matter their age! Enjoy. 

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Scarlett is Officially Potty Trained!

There's big news in our house! Scarlett is officially out of pull-ups and in big girl underwear.  Can you believe it?

The transition happened very recently and I couldn't be more thrilled.  Scarlett was in pull-ups for months and would use the bathroom occasionally, but not as much as I would like. She was still having accidents and I was getting tired of it.  I'd been changing her for over 3 years now and enough was enough!



One morning I woke up and I told myself today would be the day.  I spoke to Scarlett and told her she's a big girl now and it was time to get rid of the pull-ups.  She seemed interested and I explained to her that she'd no longer be wearing the pull-ups, but would be in underwear during the day.  I did mention that at night she still needed one for the time being.  My husband took her box of pull-ups out of her room and told her we'd be getting rid of them and she had no issues with it!

I had a few packs of underwear waiting for her so she'd be ready for when this day came. I treated this situation like how I did when I got rid of her pacifier and informed her that she can have a reward for being a big girl.  Scarlett said she'd like a Mickey Mouse toy to document the event, so off we went to Target!

In the days that followed, Scarlett really did very well and it was like a switch flipped in her brain overnight.   Honestly, she barely had any accidents, maybe one a day and that was it.  I stayed on top of Scarlett to ensure that she'd use the bathroom frequently.  You might say I went overboard with reminding her but it was worth it to me to have that drilled into her mind.

I'm happy to report that today is day 3 of being completely accident free.  Scarlett has also woken up two mornings in a row with a dry night-time pull-up.  If this pattern continues for several more days in a row, she can ditch the night-time pull up and be in underwear full-time! 

As a parent, I am extremely proud of this milestone.  It's a really big deal and we'll be saving a lot of money on pull-ups too! 

Scarlett is growing up so fast and I'm happy for each milestone achieved but I wish time would slow down just a little.