Christmas Tic-Tac-Toe

    One of the things that I have noticed as an educator is that children and young people are completely addicted to technology. They don't take time out to speak to one another fact to face anymore and they definitely don't play the kinds of games that we used to play when we were kids. The games I'm talking about were Jacks, Tic-Tac-Toe, Hopscotch, etc.     Lately, my husband and I have been trying to limit technology in our home. Since we now have a teen and a pre-teen, they would rather spend most of their time playing video games when we are home. While we do reward them with time to play these games, we've also been going back to basics by making them turn off their gadgets in lieu of playing some good old-fashioned games as a family.     When I was younger, one of my favorite games was Tic-Tac-Toe because it was so easy to play and because you could basically use any surface as a game board and many items can be used as game pieces. That … [Read more...]

Enjoy Your Favorite Movies With Showcase Subscribe! #ShowcaseCinemas @ShowcaseUS #Ad

    Every holiday season, it's always a challenge to purchase just the right gifts for your friends and family. This year, my older son is a teenager and my nephews are teenagers so I wanted to make sure to get them presents that they would really enjoy. But what do you get the young person or loved one who already has everything? Since everyone in my family and my circle of friends loves movies, I knew that purchasing a subscription plan from Showcase Cinemas would be the perfect gift for all of them!    Showcase recently launched a special subscription program titled Showcase Subscribe to make moviegoing a easier and more affordable for its customers. You can purchase tickets from either the 2D or Premier plan, which includes 3D, XPLUS and IMAX formats. The best part is that their individual plan starts at just $16.96! It's so easy to reserve their tickets via the app without having to worry about blackout dates. My loved ones can also use their Showcase Starpass membership number to … [Read more...]

Nativity Puppets

    Can you believe that Christmas is right around the corner? This is, by far, my favorite time of the year. I just love all of the sights, scents, and sounds of the holidays. It just feels like such a warm and inviting time and I do believe that it helps to bring out the good in people. Everything about the holidays also lends itself to some creative and colorful arts and crafts. One of my favorite memories from my childhood was my grandmother's Nativity which she put up every Christmas Eve. Those fond memories were the inspiration for this project. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. Nativity Finger Puppets Supplies needed: -stretchy gloves in your choice of color - peel and stick felt nativity stickers (found at Hobby Lobby or most craft stores where scrapbooking materials are sold) - craft glue or hot glue/glue gun Directions: 1. First decide in which order you wish to place the nativity characters. For ours, we placed the Holy Family together on one side … [Read more...]

Basketball Cookie Pops

    I definitely could not let the official start of basketball season at my son's school without commemorating the event with a fun basketball recipe. His team often has celebrations throughout the season and parents are always being asked to bring treats and donate their time. My son and his teammates love cookies and they love anything that has to do with basketball.     I thought it would be fun to utilize my chocolate pop making experience to create some delicious basketball cookie pops for them to enjoy. Many of you probably don't know this but I worked at a gourmet chocolate shop when I was in college and learned quite a bit about creating delectable treats with chocolate. But that is a post for another day. In the meantime, check out this fun recipe that is so easy to make! Basketball Cookie Pops Ingredients: Oreo cookies 2 cups orange candy melts 1 cup brown candy melts Lollipop sticks Parchment paper Decorating bag Directions- 1. Lay out a … [Read more...]

Get The Dream Kitchen You’ve Always Wanted! @BestBuy @LGUS #Ad

    When I had my kitchen completely remodeled last year, it was one of the most exhilarating experiences that I have had as a homeowner. It was such a treat to see my vision come to life and I absolutely insisted on having matching appliances so they could be the Crown Jewels of my new kitchen. There must be something about getting older because I get so excited about purchasing major appliances these days! Best Buy has always been our go-to retailer for everything appliance related.     The new LG Matte Black Kitchen that is available at Best Buy and it is a homeowner's dream come true. Its exclusive Matte Black stainless steel combines the timeless look of stainless steel with a luxe and low-gloss matte finish that compliments any kitchen décor. The best part is that these LG smart kitchen appliances are wi-fi and voice-enabled, allowing you to control your kitchen appliances remotely -- from changing settings, to checking the status, or turning on or off.     Smart appliances … [Read more...]

Superhero Soaps

   In our family, we have been blessed with nothing but boys and they love wrestling, running around, riding their bikes, and pretending to be superheroes. Now that my boys are older, they enjoy being superheroes on their favorite video games. Recently, I was asked by a friend to come up with some fun party gift ideas for her nephew's birthday party. Since I've made DIY soaps before, I thought it would be fun to make superhero soaps for all the kids. Superhero Soaps Materials: 1-2 lb. clear glycerin soap block (I purchased mine at a local arts and crafts store but they are readily available on Amazon) 4-5 drops of essential oil in your favorite scent (optional) Superhero erasers Square soap molds Directions: Cut the glycerin into small chunks using a sharp knife and place in a 2 cup microwave safe glass measuring cup. Microwave the glycerin in 1 minute increments, stirring until completely melted. If using essential oil, add 4-5 drops and stir. … [Read more...]

Enjoy A Halloween Monster Movie Night! #HotelT3 #Ad

    Can you guys believe that Halloween is right around the corner? My family and I are so excited with all the costume and candy preparations that this fun holiday has really crept up on us. One of our favorite Halloween traditions is also watching spooky movies together and making the night a fun monster movie night. That is why we have added Hotel Transylvania 3 to our scary movie collection!     Available now on Digital HD and on Blu-ray™ Combo Pack and DVD, Mavis surprises Dracula with a family voyage on a luxury, haunted monster cruise ship. Of course, the rest of the Drac Pack has to tag along, and that’s when things get a little…batty. The monsters are having a great time, indulging in all of the shipboard fun the cruise has to offer, from monster volleyball to colossus-sized buffets and exotic excursions, but then the unexpected happens when Drac falls for the ship’s mysterious, and dangerous, human captain Ericka. It also has some fun, family bonus features, … [Read more...]

Save Money By Cutting The Cord To Cable! @BestBuy @madebygoogle #Ad

    If you are a budget conscious mom like me, you are always looking for ways to save money on your monthly family expenses. Imagine saving money by cutting the cord to cable and streaming their entertainment with the Google Chromecast Streaming Media Player. You can all together now watch movies, shows, live TV, YouTube, and photos streaming on your television from all your family's devices.¹     You can now stream from your phone to TV. All you have to do is plug Chromecast into the HDMI port on your TV and to power and stream your favorite entertainment right from your phone with just a tap. This allows you to watch shows, listen to playlists, and more. The best part is that, while streaming, you can still use your phone as you normally do.     Google Chromecast Streaming Media Player works with the streaming apps you know and love! Enjoy TV shows, movies, videos, songs, games, sports and more from over 2000 apps like Netflix, YouTube, YouTube TV, and HBO NOW.¹     … [Read more...]

Your Middle Schooler Will Love The Storm Runner! #TheStormRunner @ReadRiordan #Ad

*Disney Book Group is partnering with me for a giveaway!     As a Literacy Specialist who teaches adolescents, I am always on the lookout for new books that my students will love. Since I now have a son in high school and one in middle school, I also recommend these same books to my own boys. Recently, I introduced the book The Storm Runner to my classroom library and my 12 year-old has also gotten his hands on a copy and he can't seem to put it down!     I asked him what he loved so much about The Storm Runner and he shared with me that the book is full of adventure. He said that, as he was reading it, he was able to visualize exactly what was going on in the story and he felt like he was right there as the action was taking place. As an educator I know that books that inspire this type of love of reading are the ones that kids and teens really love. About the Book How can one boy with a limp stop the Maya god of death, disaster, and darkness from destroying the world? Zane … [Read more...]

Choosing The Right Children’s Hospital For Your Child #HassenfeldChildrensHospital #Ad

*This post is brought to you by The Motherhood and Hassenfeld Children’s Hospital at NYU Langone. All opinions are my own.     Having a child with a chronic medical illness is extremely difficult. As parents, we never want our children to be ill and we want to make them better right away whenever they do get sick. As many of you know, my younger son has had Benign Rolandic Epilepsy since he was eight years old. I can still remember the first time I witnessed him having a seizure, it was one of the worst moments of my entire life. As a result of his illness, we have spent quite a bit of time at the hospital having him tested as well as taking him to the Emergency Room.     As I navigated the medical system at our local children’s hospital, I learned that one of the best things that parents can do for their children is to advocate for them to receive the best care from the best doctors. It’s so important to choose the right children’s hospital to entrust with the care of your … [Read more...]