Author Archives: mommyhasalife

Disney On Ice #DreamBig in Youngstown Recap

What a fun night for my family!  Truly, my boys had a blast and I forgot how great the Disney on Ice shows are.  This show has about 10 short stories filled with your favorite songs from Disney Movies.  Some of these include:  Frozen, Moana, Coco, Aladdin, Beauty and the Beast, Sleeping Beauty/Maleficent, Tangled, Cinderella, and The Little Mermaid.

Cohen

My kids love Disney Movies and love the songs.  Being that each story was just a short recap with songs, the show really moved along and kept the kids engaged the entire time.  My kids were clapping along and just having a great time.

Caleb

If you missed the opening night, don’t worry there is another show tonight (December 27th at 7 PM) and even more over the weekend!

Friday, Dec. 27 at 7 pm
Saturday, Dec. 28 at 11 am, 3 pm and 7 pm
Sunday, Dec. 29 at 1 pm and 5 pm

And tickets start at just $15 and can be can be ordered online at www.ticketmaster.com.

While I say there is not a bad seat in the house at Covelli, if you want the best seats, I would get your tickets as soon as possible!!

Ariel
Tips from me if you are going to the show:  #1 Parking in the lot at Covelli is $10 Cash.  There is another lot offering parking, but it is the same price and farther away.  So if you see the first “parking for $10″, don’t be duped- Covelli is also $10 and you will be much closer!

Disney has a ton of souvenir stands, so arrive early if you are planning to get souvenirs- the lines at the Disney Merchandise stands were not very long at all.  They had those fun light up toys, some plush, Shaved Ice in cups, Lemonade to drink, Popcorn, and Cotton Candy.  There is a concession stand with what I would call “real” food.  This is separate from the Disney Merchandise and snacks.  The line also moved very slow- but the food was DELICIOUS, so if you need to eat at the show, make sure you arrive early enough to hit up both stands.  I had to work, so we were pushing it to get to the show on time and opted to eat there.

They do come around with souvenirs, popcorn, shaved ice, and cotton candy to the seats at this show too.

I hope you get a chance to check out the show this weekend, it is definitely a good one!!

Alladin

Disney On Ice is coming to the Covelli Center. AND GIVEAWAY!!!

It is always exciting when Disney on Ice comes to the Covelli Center here in Youngstown.  It’s a fun time for the family and always a great show.  The new Dream Big show featuring Moana and the greatest demigod that ever lived, Maui, on an action-packed voyage to restore the stolen heart of Te Fiti.

Disney on Ice Moana

Explore the Land of the Dead as Miguel from Disney•Pixar’s Coco brings the festivities of Dia de los Muertos to the ice. Get tangled up in Rapunzel’s hair-raising quest to see the floating lights. Travel to the kingdom of Arendelle with Anna, Elsa and Olaf in a dramatic retelling of the sisterly love that saved a kingdom. And discover the strength, bravery and kindness that inspired generation after generation with Jasmine, Ariel, Aurora, Belle and Cinderella.

Dream Big captures all the magic and adventure of Disney’s immortal tales through cutting edge figure skating, glamourous costumes and stunning set designs. Through innovative lighting and thrilling special effects, audiences are transported to a world of imagination, where heroes of every kind seek to fulfill their dreams. High-flying jumps, breathtaking skating and lovable Disney friends make Disney On Ice presents Dream Big an experience families will never forget!

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What a great gift to wrap up for the kiddos!  Instead of more toys, give them the gift of entertainment with tickets to Disney on Ice.

Show times are:  Thursday, Dec. 26 at 7 pm
Friday, Dec. 27 at 7 pm
Saturday, Dec. 28 at 11 am, 3 pm and 7 pm
Sunday, Dec. 29 at 1 pm and 5 pm

And tickets start at just $15 and can be can be ordered online at www.ticketmaster.com.

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Crayola Experience Activities

A must do for Preschoolers: The Crayola Experience Orlando

My family visited Orlando earlier this month and while we were there, we decided to check out some things to do that were not going to be long days, trying to take it easy after a full day of traveling.  The Crayola Experience has been on my list since it opened, but we haven’t been down to Orlando since then with an opportunity to check it out.

Crayola Experience Activities

My little guys are 3 and 4, and I felt like they were the PERFECT age for The Crayola Experience.  Caleb, who is 4 (starting Kindergarten next fall) was truly into everything they had to offer.  He really enjoys crafts and constructive things to do, so he fully took advantage of every activity that was available.  Cohen, who is 3, enjoyed a lot of the activities, but his attention span was not really there to enjoy EVERYTHING or at least not at the level Caleb was able to enjoy it, but there was still a lot for him to do and see and he had a really great time.Crayola Experience Life Size Dry Erase

When we got there the kids were so excited about the bright colors and interactive giant screens in the lobby.  Dad took them over to play with the screens while I got us all checked in and asked some questions to make sure I understood how everything worked.  I got all the information, and our tokens and we were off to the fun upstairs!

I tried to get the boys to do some crafts when we first got there, but they saw the giant play area and they were off to play and burn off some energy.  There are two play areas, one for toddlers and one for big kids.  The boys thoroughly enjoyed BOTH play areas.  The big kid one was a little big for Cohen- but he has a big brother helping him so he wanted to be in the big kids one too.  The Toddler Play area has a life size Lite Brite, and some fun toys to bounce on- along with a smaller play area with slides.  The big kids play area has a lot of climbing spaces and fun slides.

Crayola Experience Spin Art

Each of us got 2 tokens and one voucher to decorate a cat.  There are some activities that do not need any tokens or vouchers- those you are able to do as many as you want.

We headed off to check out the plush cats.  It seems that the craft in this area does change periodically.  Today was a cat that the kids colored with markers- and then rinsed off, dried and were able to color again.  These cats were a hit.  The boys really enjoyed coloring them- washing them and repeating the process.  They are still a hit, even after we left.  The boys have carried these cats around and played with them for the last month.

Crayola Experience ClayThe Tokens- Each person receives two tokens with their ticket.  The tokens can be used for a variety of little take homes.  You can customize crayon wrappers- so we made everyone their own crayon.  You can get a small pack of crayons, a marker, or a pack of clay.  The clay is similar to play-doh and there are tables of tools that the kids can play with the clay there.  You can also buy additional tokens for $1 each.  Our favorite thing was the clay, because it was a nice hands on activity that we all enjoyed, but the personalized crayons were cool too!

All of the other activities you are welcome to do without tokens and as many times as you want.  There was a melted crayon spin art, melting crayons into molds, and another activity where there was a pen that melted crayons and you draw with the melted crayons.  All fun stuff!

The kiddos had a ball!  There are other activity stations- shows- experiments- and some add on crafts you have buy and make.  Definitely something fun to do if you are in Orlando and looking for something indoors to do on a hot or rainy day.

Remember teachers get a free one year membership (VIP Kid Teachers Count- just bring your 6 Apple Card) so if you are a teacher definitely take advantage of that special offer!

FTC Disclosure:  I received complimentary passes to the Crayola Experience.  However, all opinions in this post are my own honest opinions and not skewed based on receiving complimentary passes. 

Mother Of All Baby Showers- Are they coming to a city near you?

The Mother of All Baby Showers is honestly something I heard of and was told “If you are looking for a cool event- that is one you NEED TO attend!”  Well– here I am- pregnant and one is actually close enough to check out so I am super excited to be checking out the event in Pittsburgh this week.

You can too!!  Use code MOMMYHASALIFE50OFF for 50% off your ticket!

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BUT- there are OTHER events in OTHER cities across the country!!  Check them out:

Atlanta, GA – August 15th 

South Florida in Davie, FL September 6th

Philadelphia, PA September 25th

Tampa, FL – November 8th

 

The Mother of all Baby Showers is a fun — KID FREE night out.  So get a babysitter, bring your husband and get ready for a night of food, drinks, education, SPA treatments… OH and FUN.

Let me know if you have ever attended and which ones!!!!  I can’t wait!!

Make sure you follow me in Instagram  because I will be posting from the event.  :)

Mother Of All Baby Showers Pittsburgh

If you are pregnant, trying to conceive, Or a new parent then the Mother of All Baby Showers is an event you don’t want to miss!!!

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This is not your mother’s baby shower! The 3rd annual Mother of All Baby Showers on July 17 at PNC Park is the best adults-only night out for expectant and new parents. Come get educated and celebrated with experts on all things pregnancy and parenting, Test Before You Invest from 20+ local and national brands, enjoy tasty treats, indulge in mini spa treatments and enter to win huge giveaways. You deserve this night out!

Use code MOMMYHASALIFE50OFF for 50% off tickets. VIPs receive an OXO Tot Mealtime Prep Set (valued at $60), early entry at 6pm and a SWAG-filled bag.

Register Here to reserve your ticket!

Here Are the Best Money and Time Investments for Your Family

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Raising a family is joyous but not cheap. Unexpected costs are to be expected. There are school outings, club fees for your kids’ afterschool activities, and so much more.

Time magazine, early last year, reported that the cost of raising a kid to adulthood is now at $233,610.
That’s a lot of money. So you might not be ready to hear that spending a little in the right places could actually save you money in the long run… But it’s true.

Here are the key areas of your family’s life where paying a little more is actually an investment that will compound with time.

Your family’s oral health.
Uncared for teeth end up becoming expensive teeth.
Skipping cleaning sessions might save you money in the short term. But in the long run can rack up a dental bill 10 times more than the cost of your regular cleaning.

Keeping your kids’ mouths in good health will ensure that they are able to eat a wide range of foods and get nutrition from many sources. Which is essential for growing children.

Beyond basic cleaning sessions, whitening and dental implants are wonderful investments in your smile.

Humans are judgmental and are prone to make split-second decisions about others. How are others sizing you up? Of course, you want people to love you and yours for your hearts of gold, but while you wait for the world to change, don’t let opportunities pass by not paying attention to your appearance.

Breastfeed your baby. 
A tip for parents and families who are just starting out. If you want to give your baby the best start to life, ditch the formula and breastfeed. This advice comes from the UN and the World Health Organization.

Breastmilk has antibodies as well as nutrients that infants need. Yes, there are valid reasons that you might not be able to breastfeed your baby. But where there is an option, this is one investment you can make into your child’s future health that actually saves you money in the process.

What it requires: your time and the pains associated with breastfeeding. But the payoff could be a healthier child who has fewer infections, and a lower risk of diabetes, obesity, and asthma!

Family experiences.

The average family vacation reported on in 2017 was $4778. That’s a lot of money. But is it worth the expense?

You might not need to spend that much in order to get the payoff. Taking a family vacation often does involve a money investment. But you can travel within the US, or even within your state to places you haven’t been to before. And you needn’t spend close to $5000 to have a good time or to gain a family experience.

Building family bonds is a natural result of spending dedicated time together. And close family ties are what you have the chance of building while your kids are still under your roof. The result pays off in better health, longer life expectancy, and emotional resilience to weather life’s storms.

So invest time in creating memorable family experiences. Those experiences can serve as a bedrock to how your family behaves down the road.

Research free activities that can be done as a family. Schedule them as often as you can. Yes, they can be a lot of work to pull off but are always worthwhile in the end.

Hobbies, sports, and interests. 

Helping your child find that thing that lights him up can be costly and time-consuming. But investing money into helping him discover his interests is a large part of parenting and should never be looked at as money down the drain.

Perhaps you put him into a year of soccer at your kids’ insistence, only to have him declare that he now hates soccer… That time and energy invested might seem like a waste, but it isn’t. These experiences all pay off at some point, even if only in the realization of what he or she is not interested in.

Your child needs comparison points in order to find the thing that could bring him a lifetime of enjoyment. So never consider clubs or activities a waste of time or money when their attention turns to other things.

Discuss with your child and make sure that this is not a result of just one bad day. If your child really is no longer interested in that hobby or club he was so passionate about only last year, it’s okay to move on.

I went to Build A Bear for #PayYourAge Day

I just got home after a busy day with the kids and friends.  Our main focus was to go to Build A Bear for the Pay Your Age promotion.  I really didn’t think it would be that busy and I thought it would be a fun time for the little ones that had not had the opportunity to Build A Bear yet.  We got done and I opened up my phone to a ton of negativity about the event and that is really just not cool because honestly, it was a fun day.

About the deal:  Any child was able to go to Build A Bear and pay their age in years for any bear of their choice.  So if your child is 1, you pay $1!  If you are older than 29, you were 29 for the day and could pay just $29 for any bear.  BAB Pay your Age

 

They definitely marketed the sale well.  I heard about the sale from many sources and was intrigued and wanted to bring my kids.  Well apparently other parents also had the same idea.  After hearing from several people that they were going to go, I figured I would arrive early to get in line so we could be the first ones in the store.

Reality:  I arrived at the mall around 8:30.  The mall doors had not even opened up yet so my friend and I hopped in the line to get into the mall.  I chatted with some other moms in line and I arrived about an hour too late if I wanted to truly be one of the first people in the store.  A friend of mine arrived at 7:30 AM and she was in the first group of 10 to get in the store.   That was smart on her part because for my kids it was really the wait to get the bears stuffed that was the killer.  Watching the other kids get their bears and not being able to help is hard for a three year old LOL.

Build A Bear Line

They had a full staff at Build A Bear, they had help from Mall Security, and managed things really well at our store.  First you waited in line to get your bear.  For US it took about 2 hours to get to the bears.  This really did not seem to take very long at all.  Dad walked around the little ones, my friend’s 6 year old daughter is exceptionally behaved and enjoyed snacks and playing while we waited.

The store had a system.  Once you reached a certain point, you received a name tag with your age on it.  Then you continued up to the from of that line.  Once you moved up there your were grouped and moved to another line where you were the next group to pick your bear.  They even had an empty store next to Build A Bear where they encouraged you to leave your stroller so it would be out of the way in the store.

Build A Bear Caleb Fluffing

After you picked out your bear, you could either pay for it empty and come back another time to stuff it, or you moved over to the stuffing line.  The only restriction was that if you selected a Pokemon Bear, you HAD to get it stuffed there, you were not allowed to bring those home and then back to stuff later.

The stuffing line was the hardest stretch for us.  THAT line alone was another 2 hours.  NOW… the reason it was another 2 hours was because the wonderful staff was doing such a great job.  Yes… your kids had to wait.  BUT once their turn came, they got the royal treatment and got to stuff their bear and fill it with love.  Again, snacks, walks, pointing out letters on the walls, playing games.. etc… and we made it through!  It was FINALLY our turn!  Caleb helped stuff little brother’s bear and fluffed them, we paid and we left with three happy kids!

Build A Bear Caleb Stuffing

Now.  If you did not arrive early, I am sure your experience was not the same as what I am describing because you may not have had the opportunity to make a bear.  My location “closed the line” somewhere around 11:00.  I didn’t think to ask why- but the staff member I chatted with told me that they had enough bears in stock for everyone that is in line to get a bear.  So instead of making children stand in line to not get a bear, if they wanted to get in line, they were given a voucher for $15 off any bear on their next visit.  They had a security person standing at the end of the line signing out the vouchers.  I am pretty sure if I had not arrived early, I would have been happy to accept the coupon and save my kids from waiting in line for 8 hours to pay a few dollars more for the bear.

Since arriving home, Build A Bear posted on their Facebook that due to the crowds and many stores closing, or fire marshals closing lines, etc., they issued a coupon that Bonus Club Members can download for $15 off any bear on their next visit.  So even if you did not brave the crowds, you can still get a deal with this coupon.  You have to print it or screen shot it by July 15th and stop into any Build a Bear store before August 31st, 2018 to redeem your coupon.  The coupon reads one coupon per account, so if you have two kids you will need your spouse to sign up for an account.

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Also, if you did not know, Build A Bear has a promotion that during your child’s birthday month they can go and build the Birthday Treat Bear for their age.  They also have coupons all the time to help make the Build A Bear experience more affordable when you sign up for the Build-A-Bear Bonus Club.

6 Winter Tasks to Prepare Your Home for the Spring

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When you live in an area that has harsh winter conditions, Mother Nature can wreak havoc on your home and yard. However, if you start to plan for these circumstances in the winter, it can make your spring cleaning and spring preparations so much easier—and sometimes even less expensive. Whether you’ve owned your home for a while or are a first-time owner, the following are six winter tasks to do that can help prepare your home for springtime.

1. Seed your garden.

Many homeowners make the mistake in thinking that your landscaping is something that needs to be done only in the springtime, but this isn’t true. In fact, preparing your garden in the winter is actually one of the better things you can do for your landscaping. That’s because your yard will naturally start to die down and hibernate for the winter, but the winter provides a great amount of moisture for your yard that it will use to fuel up.

By seeding your lawn, and even by planting flower seeds, during the winter, you can actually see the benefit of doing so come springtime. Even setting up a garden irrigation system during this time will prove fruitful come spring. Your yard will not only be thicker and more plush, but your flowers will grow more quickly and be a sight to see.

2. Dig up old flowers.

If your yard has annuals throughout, it’s a good idea to get these pulled out before the first frost. Not only are these dead flowers an eyesore during the winter months, but leaving them during the winter will make them freeze, and the bulbs are harder to dig up come springtime. Instead, if you rid your yard of the necessary plants and flowers before winter, you’ll have an easier time getting them out. Then, you won’t have a lot of yard work to do in the springtime, making your yard easier to prepare for the season.

3. Put items away.

If you have an outdoor space that you use often, chances are there are items there that possibly shouldn’t stay out all winter long. If this is the case for your home, be sure to put these items in storage for the winter. This way, you don’t have to worry about them becoming broken or damaged during the winter, leaving you with a large mess to clean up when spring comes. Instead, you’ll be able to re-use these items, allowing you to have less money to spend as well.

4. Prepare your pool.

If you have a swimming pool, it needs to be properly maintenance before the winter season approaches. Doing this not only protects it, but ensures you have an easier time getting your pool ready once spring and summer make their way in. In addition, if you have any issues with your pool now, this is the time to fix them. Most common pool repairs can be done yourself, but if you do need to call in a professional, most lower their prices during this time of year due to the seasonality of their business.

5. Fix any outstanding issues.

Sometimes there are issues around the house you don’t touch, but when the winter season approaches, it’s a good idea to fix these issues before winter. Usually, the winter weather can make smaller issues worse, and then you’ll find yourself with a very intrusive or very expensive fix in the spring. Instead of finding yourself in this situation, it’s important for you to fix these issues right away, especially if it has anything to do with your home’s exterior, foundation, or roof.

6. Clean it out.

Most people do a big spring cleaning, but there’s no law that says you can’t do this in the winter too. If you clean your home out during the winter season, you can reap plenty of benefits. First, you’ll create more storage space that you can use for all the new things you’ll get during the holidays. In addition, you may come across something you forgot you had, which can make a perfect re-gift or could be put to good use this time of year. Finally, cleaning your home out now makes it less of a project to tackle in the spring, so you can make more time for the springtime fun.

Being a homeowner is a big responsibility, and taking the time to get your home ready during the winter can actually have a positive impact on your home during the spring as well.

Check out Netflix’s True and The Rainbow Kingdom NEW EPISODES!

True and The Rainbow Kingdom now has two more stand-alone titles that are being released TODAY:  TRUE: MAGICAL FRIENDS and TRUE: WONDERFUL WISHES each with 5 episodes…for a total of 10 NEW EPISODES!

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If you haven’t seen the first season of True and the Rainbow Kingdom, this preschool series follows 8-year-old True and her best friend, a cat, Bartleby, as they help the whimsical citizens of the Rainbow Kingdom, a really cool universe that is colorful, bright, and happy, filled with delightful and fantastical friends.

In the new season, True goes deeper and learns about the people and creatures living in the Rainbow Kingdom. True’s adventures show kids how to deal with the unexpected, be emotionally resilient and to care for others.  This Netflix series has a very positive vibe, True is happy and always looking to the best outcome!

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If your kids like True and the Rainbow Kingdom, you may also want to download the True Wishes App so your child can play games with True too!  The True Wishes app is available on Google Play or Apple Apps Store for just $1.99.

True and the Rainbow Kingdom is produced by Guru Studio, in collaboration with Pharrell Williams’ i am OTHER, world-renowned artist collective, FriendsWithYou and Home Plate Entertainment.  They are the same animation team that also brought you Paw Patrol, Backyardigan and Ever After!     They are no longer just an animation studio though, but also an entertainment company; they have evolved from animation projects into creating their own stories, which is super awesome!

Follow the hashtag #trueandtherainbowkingdom on social media to see what everyone is saying about the new True episodes!

Bored with Your Career? Consider These 6 Exciting Opportunities

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There comes a time for many of us when we grow bored with our careers. Maybe we got into this career without really thinking about where our passions lie, or maybe your conditions have changed over the years, making the job less exciting. Or maybe you’re just in the mood for a change, and you want to do something different with your life. Whatever the reason, when the time comes, you’re not entirely sure where to go next. To help you out, here are some of the most exciting career opportunities, to give you something to think about.

Starting Your Own Business

Rather than working for someone else, why not work for yourself? Starting your own business is very exciting, and you get to choose what type of business you want. Maybe you want to sell homemade quilts, or turn your home into a bed and breakfast. Whatever it is, following your passion and starting a business is always exciting. There are of course some risks involved, and you’ll need a lot of planning in order to start off right. But plenty of people have quit their jobs to start their own business, so there’s no reason you can’t be the next.

Learn to Fly

What could be more exciting than flying an airplane? Pilots get to fly all over the world, while being fairly well compensated. By finding a professional pilot program in your area, you’ll learn everything you need to know, and get hands on experience in flying. Once you learn to master the skies, you’ll wonder how you ever settled for road trips!

Become a Travel Blogger

If the idea of traveling suits you, but you don’t want to do the flying yourself, then perhaps you could earn a living as a travel blogger. Travel bloggers visit places all over the world, and write about their experiences. Finding a way to get paid as a travel blogger isn’t always easy, but if you can pull it off, you’re likely to find yourself in a career that you love. You’ll need a talent for writing, along with some knowledge on how to run a blog and market yourself. Also keep in mind that a lot of people are trying to make it as a travel blogger, so you’re going to have some competition.

Learn to Act

Many of us harbor a dream of one day appearing on stage, TV, or film, but we never pursue those dreams. Maybe it’s because of stage fright, or maybe it’s because we think we don’t have any talent. Whatever the reason, we settle for watching people perform, always wishing it was us. If this sounds like you, consider doing something about it. Take some acting classes in your local area, or learn to act on your own. Once you have some of the skills down, muster up the courage, and start looking for acting opportunities in your area. Most places have regional theaters you can audition for, or if you’re near a major city, you could audition for TV commercials or smaller productions. You might not become a celebrity overnight, but if acting is really your dream, then it’s time you went after it.

Fight Fires

Nothing says exciting like running into a burning building. If you want to help your fellow humans, and do something worthwhile with your life, the country always needs more firefighters. Talk to your local fire department about becoming a firefighter, and the training that is necessary to join them. In some cases this is on a volunteer basis, and in other you could turn it into a lifelong career. Fighting fires is a dangerous job, but if you really want excitement, this could be the way to go.

Become a Paramedic

Lastly, if helping out others appeals to you, but you don’t want to have to enter a burning building in order to do it, think about becoming a paramedic. Paramedics work in high-stress environments, rushing to locations to quickly help out people in distress. Becoming a paramedic takes a decent amount of training, and a large time commitment, but it is an excellent way to give back to your community and have an exciting job at the same time.

Try Something New to Find the Right Career

The above careers are only a small sample of the exciting job opportunities that exist out there. Think about what it is you’ve always wanted to do, and then find a way to do. You don’t have to quit your current job in order to try out something else and see if you like it. Just be open to new ideas, and if an exciting career opportunity comes along, be brave enough to consider it.