Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Celebrating Mini Milestones with Netflix

I've said before how much our family loves Netflix and when we can find the perfect shows for our family, that just makes me happy!

Mini-Milestones?  You ask my husband and he'd say I think everything is a mini-milestone haha! He routinely brings up Billy Gardell's schtick about "making memories." {If you haven't heard that, you need to!} So, while we're busy "making memories" in my house, some of them involve these mini-milestones.

George and I have just started watching Hemlock Grove, a Netflix original, together and we love that we can watch commercial-free! With my husband's work schedule, finding time to watch a couple of episodes together is one of the ways we simply connect without the chaos of our busy family. We try to find a show to watch together and this is our most recent.  So far, so good!  

One of Lily's favorite things to do is "have a snuggle" and watch a show or a movie together.
Last year, Lily got her first pair of glasses. Recently, we watched Arthur's Through the Looking Glasses (S15E09).  Lily loved watching Arthur looking for his glasses first thing in the morning and she exclaimed, "Arthur looks for his glasses just like ME!"  and he got to try on new glasses "Just like me!"  
This was a definite milestone in Lily's life and it was special to be able to watch this show together and talk about her own experience picking out glasses and wearing them!

Another current family mini-milestone involves trick or treating! Last year was Lily's first year she really understood the concept, but it was cold and rainy, so all she wanted to do was go home.  This year she is completely enamored by the whole idea of Halloween and trick or treating! 

Lily so excited to see another Elsa and Anna in our local Halloween parade.

She can't wait for her baby sister to be able to go for her first time too! Violet was just 2 weeks old on Halloween last year.  Lily picked out a special purple bucket for Violet this year. Looks like Violet has already started the swiping of the big sister's stuff and preferred Lily's pink bucket!

Looking for Halloween shows to watch, we were happy to find  Jake and the Never Land Pirates: Tricks, Treats and Treasure! (S02E15)

This one we had Andrew watch with us and despite his teenage grumbling, I know he really loves the family connection because each year he talks about what we did the last year or in previous years. That's something I truly love about him, his connection to traditions and making memories. 

As we've celebrated a big milestone in the last week with Violet turning one, George and I have talked about our last pregnancy a lot lately and I talked him into watching What to Expect When You're Expecting with me! 

Of course, I may have jinxed myself when I overheard him say a few days later, "We need to have one more little boy."  What???   

I love making memories with my family and Netflix is definitely a part of some of those that we make at home!  I love that through the #StreamTeam I can share all of this!

Here are some Netflix Titles to Celebrate Mini Milestones with your family!
For your kids:
70305131 4181224
70222359 3827682
70176984 3827040
70070452 2243674
70200276 2432682
292876 4066169
70143241 3862357
Mighty Ducks  The D2 The Mighty Ducks NA EST and VOD Poster Key Art JPEG 571 x 800   WDSHE UK Netflix
Akeela-And-The-Bee EN US 571x800
70235385 2128751
70171969 9650290
Diners Drive Ins and Dives EN US 571x800 copy
70136147 2313158
60028097 3785137
70264625 2502581
70235691 1142298


Plus a few major milestones for mom and dad:
70136120 3360608
70221841 2756788
what to expect when youre expecting poster Cleaned

Parenthood S5 571x800 ENG US.2
70143842 11330576
House Hunters EN US 571x800
New JobThe Office
Getting MarriedMy Fair Wedding with David Tutera
Having a BabyWhat to Expect When You're Expecting
Life as a ParentParenthood
Running for OfficeParks & Recreation
Buying a HomeHouse Hunters

Monday, October 27, 2014

Netflix #StreamTeam Member Woooooo!

I'm proud to share that I am a member of Netflix Stream Team this year!  What is the Stream Team, you ask? It's an exclusive group of bloggers sharing our love of Netflix through different themes each month! So, be on the lookout for these posts on the blog and #StreamTeam posts on Twitter and Instagram as well!

I'm super excited about this opportunity and cannot wait to write about our Netflix experiences, why we watch the shows and movies we do and to help you carve out some family time and some couple time and even some time alone with movie and show suggestions! We have been a Netflix family for about a year now--from the moment we dumped cable tv in our house and we have been so happy! Being selected to participate as a Stream Team member was seriously just icing on the happy Netflix cake!

A little more than a week ago, I was just in the front yard with Lily when the UPS guy pulled up around 5:00pm. We love packages in our house and with Violet's birthday the next day, I wasn't expecting this to be for me. Lo and behold! I was so happy when I opened up the box and found this inside...

The gift tag is amazing with my blog header on top and one of the first things I noticed! What a touch!  How amazing to be given a gift of an iPad mini to stream Netflix on!  I could not be more thankful and excited about this opportunity!  Of course we "broke in" the iPad with Netflix within a few hours. I cleaned up the kitchen after supper while Lily and Violet watched Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood together on it.  It was perfect!

Tomorrow I will share my October monthly post about mini milestones! We have a lot of mini milestones in our house and I love that was the first theme! Stay tuned!

Disclosure: As a member of the Netflix #StreamTeam I was provided the above product and a subscription to Netflix. All opinions are my 100% my own and I was already a proud Netflix subscriber prior to this opportunity.

Monday, October 20, 2014

A Great Fall Weekend!

Happy Monday!

Seems like every weekend from October until the end of the year is busy these days. This past weekend was no different.

Violet turned ONE on Friday!  Sweet baby girl! I cannot believe how quickly this last year flew by! We reminisced about our trip to the hospital to deliver, worrying we'd never make it! We had a little doughnut date ~ her first~ and a sweet little cake just for her while we sang happy birthday!  She's going to get a separate post all about her. We are celebrating her with a family party next weekend! Lots of purple. :)

I took the girls to Andrew's football game Friday night for the first time. The downside of having a husband working nights is things like this are often just me.  The weather was perfect that day and didn't look like it would be too cold that night.  I was right. It was perfect! I wore Violet in the carrier and Lily was great about staying with me. She loved watching the marching band and kept shouting, "Bubby!" trying to get Andrew's attention.  She also was super excited about the cheerleaders pink pompoms! I let her go down the few steps in the stands from where we were to stand in front of the cheerleaders and she had a ball! Violet was perfect all night! Not at all fussy, danced everytime she heard the marching band play even throughout the game, and smiled and waved at everyone walking past us.  We left the stands after the half-time performances and watched much of the 3rd quarter walking around. Finally, I decided we'd head to the car and wait for Andrew after the game there and maybe the girls would fall asleep while we waited. They did. After the game, the band performed another show and I watched that one from the parking lot.  Our stadium is set lower in a valley so the parking lots overlook the field. It was a fun night! Happy 1st birthday to Violet!

Saturday, we did some things around the house and took Andrew to get his flu shot. The girls already had theirs done a few weeks ago.  I asked if they could weigh Violet really quickly and unofficially since we don't go for her well-visit until next week.  I love our pediatrician's office!  Andrew also had a band festival their school was participating in, so his evening was booked.  The girls and I invited ourselves over to Stef's house while Andrew was gone in an effort to get Tracy to keep her birthday dinner plans with her husband after her sitter couldn't make it.  Stef and I both offered to keep her kids, so we made it in one place and Stef's house is closer to them.  We left to pick Andrew up at school and promptly came home and crashed.

Sunday, we headed to the pumpkin farm for our annual pumpkin picking trip. This is one of my favorite activities each year and has been ever since Andrew was born!  After we got home from that, my crew was hungry and cranky, so everyone had snacks and I headed to the grocery store to pick up a few things to make supper. I found a new, easy recipe for chicken parm that turned out great and our family dinner was really nice.  We're always so on-the-go that when we get to sit down for more than a rushed suppertime, I definitely appreciate it.  We talked with Andrew and Lily about what they're loving about school currently and it always makes me happy to listen to them talk. Sometimes teenage conversation is like pulling teeth.  Since Violet missed her entire afternoon nap, she was ready for bed right after supper. Lily decided she wanted to watch Frosty, so she cozied up in our bed.

George and I had also had somewhat of a date night planned.  I say somewhat because we were going to meet a friend in town from Minnesota.  The funny thing about this friend is G and I both knew him separately and since we both were friends with him on Myspace, THAT is how George and I met! So for the first time in 8 years, we all got to see each other. We had a great time with him and enjoyed our kid-free time as well! Hopefully, it will be sooner than 8 years before we get together again and his wife will able to make it too.

It was a great weekend and now we look forward to my mom's arrival this week!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Rock n Roll with The Hard Rock Roxtars + $50 GC giveaway! #HRRoxtars

Are you ready to rock?! I hope so because Hard Rock International is rollin' out a new band of the coolest characters to help make your own little rockstars' experience at Hard Rock Cafes® and Hard Rock Hotels® awesome! 

The Hard Rock Roxtars: 

  The Hard Rock Roxtars are each unapologetically original and designed to inspire kids of all ages to rock an inimitable brand of cool, allowing their originality to shine!
Band members include:
o   Razzi™, “the motherly type” who is famous for squishy hugs and keyboard skills
o   Sir Kingston™, a British-invasion inspired rock-and-roller on lead guitar
o   Styler™, a free-spirited and accompanying guitar player
o   Buddy Jr™, a wild man who loves nothing more than a good drum solo
o   Skiddley™, the lead singer and “Mr. Cool” of the group

Lily LOVES Buddy Jr!  She asks a lot of questions about him too-- like why does he have a headband over his eyes haha! I love this kid! She always tries to lift his headband. Buddy Jr has become her little sidekick! She also really loves coloring right now and this sweet little activity book with the Roxtars is perfect for her!

To launch the Hard Rock Roxtars, Hard Rock Cafe is hosting “Does Your Child Look Like a Rock Star?” Contest  to encourage guest interaction with the new Hard Rock Roxtars characters, kids menu, and merchandise.
·         For one night, during the “Does Your Child Look Like a Rock Star?” Contest, kids eat free* at Hard Rock Cafe with a paying adult!

Do you have a rockstar of your own?
·         Guests can bring their favorite pint-sized rock star dressed in their best costume to the cafe for a chance to win a Hard Rock Cafe gift card or a 2015 birthday party* for eight of the rock star’s closest band members and entourage!
·         For additional information about the Hard Rock Cafe “Does Your Child Look Like a Rock Star?” Contest, contact your local cafe for contest details!   {+No celebrity or musician has endorsed the “Does Your Child Look Like a Rock Star” contest}

Eat Like The Roxtars:

·         Children who dine at Hard Rock Cafes worldwide are given the VIP treatment and greeted with their own Hard Rock Roxtars activity book, themed menus, guitar-shaped plates and photo opportunities.  Hard Rock Cafes worldwide will offer healthier food options, such as Skiddley’s “Not-so-diddley” chicken breast and “Twisted ‘n tasty” cavatappi pasta. 

Children who stay at Hard Rock Hotel locations with their families will receive a special Hard Rock Roxtars Activity Book at check-in and unlimited entertainment at Hard Rock Roxity Kids Club, a family-friendly, music-inspired haven, where kids can rock to their own rhythm, catch a live Hard Rock Roxtars performance or take part in experiential, engaging and music-infused learning activities.

Giveaway deets:  
The gift pack includes a themed guitar-shaped plate, a 6” plush Hard Rock Roxtars character, a Hard Rock adult t-shirt, an activity book, and a $50 Hard Rock gift card!

Giveaway will run through Halloween night! Winner will be notified by email and have 24 hours to respond.   
Break a leg! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: The information, gift card, gift pack and giveaway have been provided to me by Hard Rock International.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Do You Wanna Build a Tutu?

Last year, I was fortunate enough to work with The Hairbow Company on Lily's tutu to enhance her Halloween costume. {You can read all about that here if you want!}

When the opportunity arose to work with them again, you bet I jumped at the chance!  They've put together a sah-weet little tutu making kit... specifically, Tutu Making 101.  I've now been making tutus for 4 years and whoooooo boy I wish I had this from the get go! It would have saved me countless hours of watching YouTube videos early on.

So, if you're a rookie or even a seasoned tutu maker, this kit has something for you! It's a short and sweet guide to making a variety of different types of tutus plus some fantastic costume ideas!  I've always used a ribbon for the waist of my tutus and was excited to see both the ribbon and crochet headband tutus in the guide.

For only $4.99 each kit includes:
Tutu Making 101 instruction booklet
Crochet Hook 
Measuring Tape

Note: You will need to buy your tulle, ribbon, and/or crochet tutu tops separately depending on the amount and colors you need. The Tutu Making Guide and Kit only includes tools and instructions. 

The Hairbow Co. has all the supplies you need to follow the guide. The tulle, the ribbon, the crochet headbands are all available on their website! The prices can't be beat!

My favorite part of this guide is the humor in the instruction! I actually laughed out loud a couple times reading!

Tutu Making 101 is literally a step-by-step from start to finish helping you with what supplies you need, different styles you can create, measuring the waist as well as the tulle, and how to knot the pieces of tulle.

I had a helper for measuring.
And in case you're wondering, we needed "5 pounds." {4 year old unit of measuring length}

I love the measuring tips in this guide! It made it super easy to cut the tulle and prepare to attach to the ribbon.  The most important part of measuring and cutting tulle is to remember to cut twice the length you want your tutu to be since you will be folding each piece in half when you attach.  
{Wonder what we could possibly be making with these colors!}

Attaching is easy peasy and since I used a ribbon I had a lot of leeway on being able to attach it and move it. When I inadvertently messed up my pattern, I was just able to slide that piece over and add in the forgotten color.  I love my tutus to be really full, so I scrunch the pieces together pretty tight!

See?? It's so simple to attach.  Fold, loop, and tighten.

Not to be forgotten, I started making a shortie tutu for my sweet Violet's first birthday.  This is the first short tutu I have ever made and I can't wait to see it on her! It's exactly half the size of the one I made for Lily.

Be sure to check back later this month to see my girls in their tutus!  And don't forget to head over to The Hairbow Company for your Tutu Making Kit and all your supplies!

Disclosure:  I was provided the tutu making kit and all materials to make the tutus from The Hairbow Company. All opinions are my own.