Trent’s Angry Birds 4th Birthday Party

I can’t believe Trent is 4!

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We were pretty surprised at how quickly we came up with this year’s theme of Angry Birds compared to prior years. We had several ideas, but since he just saw the Angry Birds movie and Brett had an idea for an outdoor game that went great with the theme, our decision was pretty easy. Since we were going to be headed to Disney World the very next day after his party, we wanted to keep it simple but fun. What would kids like at a party when it’s Florida and super hot out? A BOUNCE HOUSE/WATER SLIDE COMBO!

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It was bigger than I thought it would be based on the photo – this should help you see the size.

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Brett stumbled upon an inflatables company on Facebook that had this “toddler-appropriate” slide for a reasonable price and would deliver/set-up at our location. Trent loved the bounce house at the activities area when we went to see the Blue Angels in Jacksonville, so we thought he would love this one too. I loved how they put down a sturdy tarp around the entire thing…much better than running on grass/dirt with wet feet.

He loved it for a little bit, then freaked himself out by being scared of a bug and heights and then didn’t really want anything to do with it. I did force him on it twice, thinking he would see how fun it was and change his mind…do you think I was successful?

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No…no I was not. He wouldn’t let me come near him for a while after I did that. Bad mommy.

At least the other kids enjoyed it.

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And Aubrey loved it for a little while too, before the bigger kids took over. I put her down the slide once, and she reacted better than Trent, but she was perfectly fine splashing in the smaller pool we set up next to the bigger one.

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A big hit was the catapult Brett built to launch water balloons at the Pig like Angry Birds. He used the Monster Toss from Trent’s 1st birthday and painted a pig over it, then built the catapult with wood and stretchy gym bands. It worked out really well.

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For the balloons, we got a couple of HUGE packs of the Bunch o Balloons from Costco….SUCH A GOOD DEAL! If you haven’t seen them yet, these water balloons are so much easier than the old-fashioned ones since the kids fly through water balloons so fast. They are now on Amazon too. I highly recommend them.

Inside, we kept the decorations to a corner in the main room…but it was a very fun corner!

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Brett made TNT boxes to hold chips and the favor bags.

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My one semi-sorta craft project for this party was the Angry Birds Favor Bags.

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I simply bought some blank paper favor bags in a few colors, bought printable Angry Birds faces on Etsy, imported them into Silhouette and cut them on the machine. They were filled with a “favor bag pack” from Amazon and some candy.

Angry Birds Favor Bags collage

 

And guess what? We forgot to pass them out! We ALWAYS forget!

Some more decorations.

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We also took the easy route on the cake this year too…Brett got a pre-made sheet cake from Publix and then used Nutty Bars to build up a set from the Angry Birds Game and used skewers to make the Angry Birds “fly” at the cake. So easy and fun!

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Here’s a link to many of the Angry Birds Party Supplies we used. :)

 

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Happy 4th birthday, Trent! We love you!

 

Cozy Up with Downy #ProtectClothesYouLove

I’m kind of ashamed to admit this, but I’ve always been a “throw all my dirty laundry into one pile and stick it in the washer with cold water” kinda gal. I didn’t know when to use hot or cold or various cycles. But a few things have changed as I get older…1) I am buying more quality pieces that I want to prolong the life of as much as possible, and 2) kids get so many random stains that basically require a PhD to know the right combination to get them clean.

With all that extra tough washing, our clothes take a beating. And I know it’s only going to get worse as they get older and start playing sports. So anything I can do to maintain the freshness, appearance and longevity of our clothes is something I will gladly incorporate into our routine.

Fabric softener sheets were always easy enough for me, but now we also use Downy Fabric Conditioner and the difference is amazing! Even while the laundry is still in the washer, you can just smell the freshness throughout the house.

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Our washer has a special spot to pour fabric softener, as I’m sure most washers do, so it couldn’t get any easier to use.

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I was silly to think that all Downy did was make stuff smell nice…which it does…but it does so much more!

-Protects fabrics so they look newer, longer (no more yucky fuzz and pilling!)

-3x the softening vs. detergent alone

-Renews freshness over time with Renewing Scent Pearls

-Helps reduce wrinkles and static cling

-Keeps clothes looking and feeling amazing

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We even like this mini travel Downy Wrinkle Releaser for when we travel! You just spray your clothes after they’ve been rolled up in your suitcase and give them a little tug to pull out the wrinkles.

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It’s getting hotter than ever in Florida now, so we will be outside going between playing and splashing in the pool. Not only do we want our clothes to get clean (hello grass and dirt stains!) but it’s nice knowing that Downy can help them last longer after so many washings. After an exhausting day of play, it’s nice to get into clean, fresh, soft clothes and even better when the air conditioner is on and you can snuggle on the couch in a soft, comfy, blanket that smells oh so good.

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Downy makes blankets more fun to be ghosts in too…Trent insisted.

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Head to the Downy Walmart page to learn more!

This is a sponsored post for SheSpeaks/P&G. Thanks for reading!

 

 

Tips to Make Brushing More Fun

We recently received a lovely care package from Firefly®, REACH®, and One2One Network that I want to share with you, along with some tips I have found useful to make brushing more fun for kids (and less-stressful for parents!).

I have been lucky enough to avoid the struggles of kid oral hygiene because my kids love brushing their teeth. Both of them started very early with “starter” toothpaste and toothbrushes. Aubrey even surprised us when she started saying “teeth” as one of her first few words (no joke!)…and now she says “done” when handing me her toothbrush.

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Of course, they think it’s fun, but I know there is more to it than that. It’s very important to make sure kids of all ages take good care of their teeth and mouth. While I have been lucky that they do it willingly, I know some parents don’t have that luxury and must coerce their kids into doing it…and doing it properly. Here are some tips to make your child’s dental routine better:

-Make it fun! Try not to make them think of it as a chore, but as something they get to do. Instead of “Okay, kids, go brush your teeth now or ELSE!” try “Yay, we get to go brush our teeth!”

-Do it with them. I always brush my teeth with my kids. I show them that “Mommy does it too” and it’s not just something I am making them do. Be a good example, even if you plan on drinking wine or, in my case, eating cookies, later.

-Let them pick out their own fun toothbrush with their favorite character or design on it. Firefly has recently expanded its line of toothbrushes to include even more fun characters and products that are ADA-approved and offer Clean. Fun. at an affordable price, including Star Wars! Character voices, memorable movie quotes, flashing lights and lightsaber sound effects will appeal to kids and encourage them to conquer the battle against the dark side of cavities each morning and night.

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-Challenge them and let them have control (depending on age, of course) Trent loves Star Wars and thinks his new Kylo Ren Lightsaber toothbrush is awesome! It lights up for 60 seconds, teaching him to brush for one full minute on each row of teeth. I challenge him to make sure he can brush until the Lightsaber turns off.

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-Don’t do it directly before bedtime. This one is a personal choice and I know that every family has different routines and it may not work for everyone, but I know that one thing kids hate more than brushing their teeth is going to sleep. So if brushing their teeth means that going to bed comes right after, they may put up more of a fight. We brush our teeth and then relax on the couch for a little bit to wind down. It works for us, but maybe you can find some way to make something similar work for you.

 

Although research varies, I erred on the side of caution and tried the Firefly Aniticavity Rinse for the sake of review…it is melon-flavored and actually tastes pretty good! It comes with a convenient kids-sized cup that fits into the bottom of the container and has an easy-to-use pump. Trent helped pump the rinse into the cup for me.

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Did you know that you need to change your toothbrush every three months? It also needs to be changed every time you get over a cold! I certainly have not been the best about that and I get sick often with two little ones in the house! Replacing a toothbrush this often means that it’s a good idea to always have an arsenal of extras, just in case. REACH offers a large variety of oral care items available at your local Walgreens, Walmart, or Target. We all have one of those near us, don’t we?

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Now brushing your teeth can also win you an amazing prize! Firefly recently launched their Lights, Camera, Smiles! Sweepstakes on the Firefly Facebook page. One lucky grand prize winner will win a trip for a family of four to the movie capital of the world: Hollywood!

 

I participated in this sponsored campaign on behalf of Firefly®, REACH®, and One2One Network. All opinions stated are my own.

Trent’s First Movie Theater Trip: Angry Birds!

This past Sunday, Brett brought Trent to the movie theater for the very first time! Sure, he’s been to the theaters at Disney World, but this was the first time he went to an actual movie theater in our town. I was so excited for him!

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They saw Angry Birds in 3D. I was a little nervous about how Trent would do with 3D, but he did great…kept his glasses on the entire time and watched everything.

Brett had him do a bunch of things…he got his own ticket from the machine and handed it to employee himself…

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and got junk food, of course!

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They even posed with all of the fun movie posters in the lobby!

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Trent plays Angry Birds on the iPad, so we knew he would like seeing the movie. Another way we knew he would like it is because he enjoys watching Angry Birds Toons on Netflix!

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Netflix is great for connecting new movie experiences to television. For instance, he posed with a Finding Dory movie setup and we definitely plan on seeing that. We can also type “Pixar” or “Nemo” or anything related to the movie into the Netflix search box to get similar results…

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Here are some more examples:

Captain America/Avengers

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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

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The Secret Life of Pets (from the creators of Despicable Me and Minions!)

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I guess while we’re saving for all these movie tickets, we can enjoy their Netflix counterparts!

 

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This post was written by me as part of my membership in the Netflix Stream Team. Thanks for reading!

 

Birchbox & Ipsy: April 2016

Ok, let’s do a little catch-up, shall we??

I have been loving trying so many different products in my beauty subscription boxes! In fact, I can’t even keep up with them and have several unopened products waiting to be enjoyed. And yet, I just signed up for a third subscription box AND snagged the newest Target Beauty Box. :)

Here are my April Birchbox and Ipsy boxes!

First up, Birchbox!

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It’s too bad these pretty boxes are basically useless…but fun to open, nonetheless.

Here’s everything inside:

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I’m currently using the hand lotion and tried the PBJ Smoothie Stick, but haven’t had a chance to try the rest. The PBJ Smoothie Stick goes on smooth with rich color, but sadly doesn’t taste like PB&J :(

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Next up, Ipsy!

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I actually don’t like the bag this month. :( It’s very colorful, just not my style. I have found that these little bags are great for so many uses…like makeup, travel-items, pens, and a way to organize random things in my purse.

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To learn more or sign up for Birchbox, head to the Birchbox website!

To learn more or sign up for Ipsy, head to the Ipsy website!