Try Green Kid Crafts for free!

Try Green Kid Crafts for free! For a limited time and until supplies last, enjoy a free sample-size project from one of their fun Discovery Boxes – Interesting Insects! Only $4.95 shipping. You will be automatically enrolled in a Green Kid Crafts monthly subscription, and may cancel at anytime. Go here to get your free trial: http://www.greenkidcrafts.com/free-trial-wings/

Your free trial includes the popular DIY Wings Creativity Kit

This award-winning Creativity Kit will have your little ones flittering and fluttering with excitement!

This kit includes:

– everything needed to make your own wearable wings
– kids will get creative with watercolor paints, giant pipe cleaners, and color diffusing wings
– special bonus: free Lorax Magazine!

*Note: This is a sample kit, not a full-size Discovery Box. This DIY Wings Kit is one of 4 projects from the award-winning Interesting Insects Discovery Box. Your free trial project will ship within three business days. You will be automatically enrolled in a Green Kid Crafts monthly subscription, and may cancel at anytime. You will have 14 days after your trial project ships to cancel your subscription. If you choose to not cancel, you will be charged $19.95 per month and receive 4-6 new projects per month with your Green Kid Crafts monthly subscription. You may cancel at any time with no penalty or obligation.

hollywood wax museum

Experience a little Hollywood in Branson!

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After 2 days at Silver Dollar City, we wanted to find something low key (and cool) to do in Branson.  My husband and I had been to the Hollywood Wax Museum on our last visit to Branson a couple of years ago…before the girls came along.  It was pretty neat, so we headed to the “Hollywood complex” which houses a wax museum, maze of mirrors, 5D ride, and mini golf course.

While it was still fairly cool in the morning hours, we played a round at Shoot for the Stars Mini Golf.  At each hole there was a character that “talked” and told us various trivia about Hollywood.  Jillian loved pushing the buttons to make the figures talk.

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Daddy helped her hit the ball, but she quickly lost interest in playing and just watched everyone else and looked at the scenery.

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With the sun beating down on us and the scenic palm trees, we felt like we were in Hollywood.

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After getting good and sweaty, it was a good time to visit the wax museum (with air conditioning) to get out of the sun.  I was afraid Matthew and I wouldn’t enjoy it since we’d been there before, but we were surprised to see that many of the exhibits were different from the last time.

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As soon as you reach the entrance, you feel like you are among the stars.

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We loved all the photo ops!

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We all got a little silly and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.  Since I had the stroller for Savannah, I was glad to see an elevator as an alternative to the stairs leading to the 2nd level.  I also appreciated the “bypass” of the scary monster section.  Both girls would’ve had a melt down if I’d made them walk through that part!!!!  When you get upstairs, there’s a nice little shooting gallery area.  Of course Jilli wanted Daddy to help her shoot.

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And this is one of my favorites.  I told her to stand by him and do her arms like he was doing with his.  This is what resulted!

 

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By the time we had played golf and been through the museum, it was time for lunch and the girls needed a nap.  So Matthew and I came back later that evening to visit the mirror maze and 5D ride.  We left the girls at the campground with my parents and were excited about our “date.”

I’d never been in a mirror maze before so I wasn’t sure what to expect from Hannah’s Maze of Mirrors.  The story is that Hannah of Savannah is cursed in a modern day fairy tale and you have to see if you’re the “chosen one” to find and free her.  You wind through 288 potential turns among hundreds of mirrored archways and reflections in every direction.

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I’m glad of 2 things:

1.  That we didn’t bring the girls.  Jilli would be running around in there and I would be TERRIFIED of losing her!!!!  There was another family who came in after and their little boy took off running toward his mom (or so he thought) and smacked right into one of the mirrors!

2.  That I brought Matthew!  He was able to quickly navigate through all the mirrors.  I got so turned around in that maze and might’ve been stuck until closing time without him.  I even tried looking up at the ceiling beams to figure out where I was in the building, but I still didn’t have a clue!

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The story is nice, but once you get into the main part of the maze, it just mirrors.  I would’ve liked to see more immersion in to the story.

Once we (Matthew) made our way out of the maze, we were a little bummed to see that Castle of Chaos was closed for maintenance.  I had even taken my motion sickness medicine.  We opted not to wait since the girls were with my parents and the lady at the desk said it could be as long as 2 hours before the ride was operational again.

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Even without the Castle of Chaos experience, we enjoyed our time at the Hollywood complex.  It was a nice way to spend the day out of the sun.  There’s something for all ages here.  The wax museum will definitely remain on our list of places to visit when we come back on future vacation.  I don’t know that the mirror maze is something that I’d want to do again…it’s one of those been there, done that things.

If you’re going to be in Branson, it’s worth your time to check out an All Access pass to the Hollywood Entertainment Complex.

 

**I received free entrance in to the exhibits at the Hollywood Entertainment Complex in order to facilitate my review.  All opinions in this post are 100% my own.

Unwind with What You Love

What are your plans for the 4th of July weekend?  This year we’ll be relaxing at home and hoping to catch the local fireworks show on Friday night.  Although I’m off all summer, some of you who aren’t that fortunate will at least hopefully have a long weekend to relax and unwind.  No matter what you love to do to help unwind, Craftsy has the supplies you need whether it be baking cakes,  drawing, crocheting (do people still do that??), gardening, or photography.

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Or maybe you’ve been wanting to learn a new skill.  Did you know that you can take classes online for just about any kind of hobby that you would like to take on?  Craftsy has many of their classes on sale this weekend, so it’s the perfect time to take advantage!  Personally, I’m always in admiration of those folks who can make those beautiful cakes and cupcakes.  Maybe I’ll try out Cakes In Vivid Color!

What class would you choose to unwind?  Gardening?  Cake decorating?  Quilting?  Photography?

*Post contains affiliate links.

 

Treatsie 4th of July Deals

Give the gift of Treatsie artisan sweets!

Treatsie has several good deals happening right now!!

For current subscribers, they have launched their  Add to Your Box program.  Here’s the Add to Your Box  options so you can see what you can pick.  I’d like to add them all.

This offer cannot be combined with other offers.

New Subscriber Promotions:

BOGO: New Subscribers will receive their second month FREE! Use code 2NDMONTHFREE at checkout.

Double Sweets: New Subscribers get double the sweets in their first box! Use code DOUBLESWEETS at checkout.

Save $10: New Subscribers save $10 on their first box! Use code FBSAVE10 at checkout.

Green Kid Crafts’ July 4th Sale

JULY FOURTH — IT DOESN’T HAPPEN OFTEN –10% OFF YOUR ENTIRE ORDER – JUNE 27 – JULY 6

Stock up and save during Green Kid Crafts’ July Fourth Sale! From now until July 6, you can enjoy 10% off your entire order with the code FIREWORKS, including subscriptions (including annual subscription!), single Discovery Boxes, and all Creativity and STEM Science Kits. Green Kid Crafts is a monthly science and creativity kit subscription service that provides all the hands-on materials needed to inspire creative and educational fun. Plus they also offer tons of single-purchase items with themes like Kitchen Science, Detectives, Dinosaurs, Mad Scientist, Nocturnal Animals, and much more. We don’t see many coupons for the longer-term subscriptions, so this is a great chance to get a deal on those! Visit here to start shopping!

New Little Passports Coral Reef Kit

**The links in this post are affiliate links and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link.

Create your own colorful coral at home with Little Passports’ Coral Reef Kit!

 

Are you looking for a fun science project for your kids to do? What about one that can spark conversations regarding different ecosystems around the world? Sound like something for your Little Explorer? Little Passports has you covered!

With simple step-by-step instructions, this easy science activity for kids demonstrates how crystals form and encourages an understanding of underwater ecosystems.

Set up your trays with the paper coral forms, add the terraforming solution, and enjoy your child’s amazement as you both watch the transformation!

The Companion Guide features new adventures in Australia with Sam & Sofia as they explore the world’s largest coral reef system, the Great Barrier Reef.

The kit includes:

  • Three coral forms, trays and terraforming solution
  • Instruction booklet with easy to follow step-by-step instructions
  • Companion Guide, featuring more Australia adventures with Sam and Sofia The Coral Reef Kit is recommended for ages 6+

    This fun science project is only $12.95 + shipping! Click here to purchase your very own Little Passports Coral Reef Kit .

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BookRoo

We love books at this house.  I have always loved to read and I’m so glad that both girls share that love with me!  We have TONS of books.  My husband says we have a book problem.  BUT…in my opinion, you can never have too many books, so when I heard about this new book subscription service, of course I had to try it out.

BookRoo delivers books for your children to  your door every month!  They are dedicated to making the world a better place. A couple of ways Bookroo helps the world at large include their recycled (and recyclable!) packaging and their commitment to giving back through donating childrens’ books to children in need through Reach Out And Read!

So let’s see what BookRoo looks like.  Here’s the box we got in the mail.

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When we opened the box, I was surprised to see that each book was individually wrapped.

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My girls always think getting new books  is like Christmas, but this special touch made it seem even more so!  Savannah ripped right in!

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Since I am a preschool teacher, our collection of book is as diverse as it is large.  My main fear with any book subscription is that we will get duplicates.  I was pleasantly surprised to find 2 books that we not only did not have, but also had never heard of.  And I know lots of children’s books.  The 2 hardcover editions we received are Harry and Horsie and Squid and Octopus Friends for Always.   image

After flipping through each book, I was afraid that they would be too advanced for my girls.  Jilli was fascinated by Harry and Horsie ($15.29 on Amazon), so we read it first.  Even Savannah sat and listened to the whole story and Jilli has brought it to me to read several times since.  I think she can identify with Harry and his bond with Horsie since she has special things she MUST have before going to bed at night.  Savannah was enthralled with the bubble machine!  It’s a sweet story about an imaginative little boy and the rescue of his precious Horsie.

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Octopus and Squid Friends For Always ($11.48 on Amazon) is not nearly as popular here as Harry and Horsie, but Jillian still enjoys hearing it.  Savannah has yet to sit through more than a couple of pages.  It does have a lot more words than the first book, and Jillian identifies more with the stories included since she is beginning to form real friendships at school with people other than her sister.  It is actually 4 stories in one book, each about the ups and downs of friendship.  It’s a great way to introduce life lessons so when arguments happen in her real life, we can revisit how Octopus and Squid resolved their differences and remained friends for always.

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Retail value of these books is $26.77 and a month to month subscription is $19.99 so you’re definitely getting your money’s worth in this box.  We tend to have favorite books that are read over and over and over and over, so introducing some new ones that we’d never heard of was nice.  I know repetition is key to learning, but I can only stand The Big Red Barn so many times!

If you’re looking for a way to provide quality books for your children but don’t have a clue what to look for, this is a great subscription to try!  Even if you know your way around children’s literature, it’s a great subscription to widen your horizons.

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What is it?     An inexpensive way for parents to grow their child’s personal library.  You can choose from either picture books (2 books/month) or board books (3 books/month).
How much is it?   $19.99/month, $55.99/3 months, $104.99/12 months
How do I get it?    Use this link to receive $4 discount on  your BookRoo subscription.   Discount will be automatically applied at checkout.

**We received a discounted box in order to facilitate my review.  All opinions are 100% mine.  This post does contain an affiliate link, as I will earn credit toward my subscription for each subscription purchased through my coupon link.

Shop Gymboree’s Hidden 48-hour Flash Sale!

Shop Gymboree’s Hidden 48-Hour Flash Sale!!

48-Hour Flash Sale! Shop Gymboree’s best deals, plus receive an additional 10% off for total savings of up to 80% off!  This sale is Monday, June 29th – Tuesday, June 30th.  Use the code EXTRA10 at checkout.

Gymboree’s Hidden 48-Hour Flash Sale: Get the best deals plus an additional 10% off with code EXTRA10

The First Years Baby Bootcamp Game

If there is one thing that becoming a parent has taught me, it’s that this is a messy job!   All aspects of it – from meal time to potty training to every day uh-ohs.  Before these kiddos came along, I would never dream of leaving my house with snot and slobber on my shoulder.  If I held those standards now, I’d never leave!!!  Part of learning to be a parent is dealing with these unexpected messes with humor.  If I got mad or out of sorts every time a mess happened this would be a miserable household.  So instead, I’ve learned to laugh and even to take a picture to document the moment.

If you’re looking for another way to find humor in life’s everyday messy moments, download The First Years Baby Bootcamp Game.  Practice day to day tasks such as feeding, soothing, and catching toys…only this time when you miss baby’s mouth or don’t catch that sippy cup in time, clean up is as simple as laying your phone down!  Share your score on social media and compare your parenting prowess with your friends!

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While this is not an addictive game that I feel compelled to play and can’t put down, it’s definitely amusing and made me literally laugh out loud when I missed baby’s mouth and splat those carrots on baby’s nose!  As in real life, as soon as you master a skill, it gets harder!  Can you beat your high score?  Can you beat your friends?

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Sight & Sound Theaters: Jonah

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The last time that we were in Branson, we saw Noah at the Sight and Sound Theater.  We were excited to see that Jonah was playing this year when we visited.  I was pregnant with Jillian when we saw Noah, so this was the first time I’d be attending with little ones.  In Noah, there was lots of animals, and I knew the girls would enjoy seeing them, but I didn’t see how many animals could be a part of Johah…other than the whale of course.  I was a little apprehensive of taking them because I was afraid that they would not be able to sit through the whole performance (the 1 year old) or be frightened by the loud noises (the 3 year old).   We fainally decided to brave it knowing there was a “family” room that we could go to if the girls got rowdy.

The theater is beautiful both inside and out.  We were seated near the back of the front middle section.  There are really no “bad seats in this theater, but I thought we had perfect seats!  We were far enough back from the stage that it might not be quite so loud, but we were close enough that we felt part of the action.  The stage wraps around and the performers come out in to the audience.  No photography is allowed, so this is the only picture I got inside of the actual theater.  However, you can view clips and more info about production at the official Sight & Sound website.

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When the performance first started, Jillian was clinging to her Daddy (who had to cover her ears) because it was too loud for her.  I might note that she is extra sensitive to loud sounds so most little ones probably wouldn’t be bothered.  Savannah was fine with all the action.  There were a couple of spots where even she said, “I scared” and hid her face in my shoulder.  When God speaks to Jonah is has a very loud, booming, intimidating voice!  And the storm while Jonah is on the boat is very intense.

After the storm, both girls were in awe of the ocean scenes.  It is as if the water rolls right over the audience, and we were underwater along with Jonah.  Fish, jellyfish, and other sea creatures swam all around us.  When the big fish made it’s entrance from backstage and then swam out over the audience, there were oohs and aahs from all of us.

In spite of the one or two intimidating spots, we all enjoyed this show…thank goodness it did keep the girls’ attention and we were able to stay in our seats instead of in the “cry” room.  It felt as if we were in the middle of the action and a part of the story as it unfolded.  The performers did excellent jobs and were very talented singers.  The big chorus at the end made me think back to my choir days and miss singing in a performance. The sets are elaborately designed and make you feel as if you are back in the days before Jesus walked the earth.  If you are in Branson, MO, I highly recommend seeing Jonah!

 

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