Captain Underpants and the Sensational Saga of Sir Stinks-a-Lot & a $50 Visa G.C. Giveaway

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As a boy mom I know my little guys do not enjoy the books of my youth. No, Little House on the Prairie. No, Anne of Green Gables. No, Babysitters Club. Boys will be boys. And my eldest son currently loves reading scary stories and anything that is funny. Captain Underpants and his silly stores are the sort of hilarious tales that little boys love.  There's something rotten in the state of Ohio, and it's smellier than a pile of putrid gym socks! Steer clear--it's Sir Stinks-A-Lot! George, Harold, and their doubles, Yesterday George and Yesterday Harold, have a good thing … [Read more...]

5-Word Book Reviews & the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge

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This post was sponsored by Scholastic to encourage children to read during the summer months, all opinions are my own.  The end of summer is already here for many. It seems that most of the country is already hitting the books. Luckily in Minnesota we don't start school until after Labor Day. That being said, I am in the midst of back-to-school shopping.  My boys need so many supplies! Black felt tip pens with a fine point. Loose leaf paper, wide ruled. Thin washable markers, classic colors. The lists are detailed and exhausting.  And while I have their backpacks … [Read more...]

Best Places to Eat in the Wisconsin Dells

MoosejawPizza

I received compensation for the creation of this post, all opinions are my own. Our family made two trips to the Wisconsin Dells area this summer. It’s such a fun family destination and is an easy trip from the Minneapolis area. Even though we have visited this location a number of times there are still new and exciting places to explore. We have yet to attend the Tommy Barlett show, but it’s high on my list of must-sees for our next trip. With regards to eating-out we have some definite family favorites in the area, but in our recent trips we’ve also explored new places. It’s that mix … [Read more...]

A Family-Friendly Adventure with Wizard Quest in the Wisconsin Dells

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I have received compensation for this post, all opinions are my own.  Solve the puzzle to free the wizards. Ultimately this is the heart of Wizard Quest. Of course included in this experience are secret rooms, clues, mystery, a ball pit, and magical worlds. Why didn’t they have something like this when I was a kid? My boys have no idea how lucky they are to experience such an amazing family-friendly place. Wizard Quest is family fun at it’s best. Using your brain instead of your brawn, every science and book-loving family is inclined to enjoy Wizard Quest. Last year we … [Read more...]

Summertime Reading with Scholastic & a Giveaway

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I created this post as a part of my partnership with Scholastic, all opinions are my own. The parting of July can feel like the end of summer in many regards. School supplies are prominent at stores and back-to-school commercials are abundant on TV. For some areas the school year will officially begin the first week of August. Luckily for my crew, summer isn’t really over. We have the full month of August to relish in all those last sunny moments. We spent the sweltering days of July busy with a multitude of activities.   Swimming, camping, bike riding—these are the … [Read more...]

Rides, Slides, Spills, & Thrills: Noah’s Ark Waterpark

noahsarkwaterpark

I received compensation for this post, all opinions are my own. My two older son's have summer birthdays and will turn eleven and eight respectively.  I occurred to me the other day that my time with them is starting to essentially countdown. Yes, I have lots of years left with them at home. Yes, counting down can be somewhat dramatic. But to a mom sometimes each birthday can be a year closer to them moving out. It's important during these years to have experiences and memories that will last a lifetime. For my boys Noah's Ark is a destination that incites cheers and … [Read more...]

A World Full of Play at the MN Children’s Museum & a Giveaway

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This post was created as a part of my ambassadorship with the Minnesota Children's Museum.  My children live to play. One of my five-year-old son’s favorite pastimes is to fight imaginary bad guys. They could be robots. They could be monsters. I have a hard time determining exactly “who” these guys are all the time. But what I do know is that he considers it an awful day if he doesn’t have the opportunity to play this imaginary game. At the heart of the MN Children’s Museum is a commitment to encouraging play. It seems so simple, right? Children love to play. But in today’s … [Read more...]

Sautéed Peas with Parmesan & a Giveaway

sauteedpeas

I received the following product for review purposes, all opinions are my own.  When I was growing up frozen peas were not a stable. Fresh peas were abundant from my mother’s garden. Unfortunately I did not inherit her green thumb, so frozen peas are my children’s reality. Lacking the fresh vibrant taste of newly picked peas, I endeavor to add some flavor to our frozen variety by sautéing them with enhancing ingredients. A little salt, pepper, Parmesan, onions and butter can add make a typical bag of these vegetables come to life. The latest enhancement to my sautéing is … [Read more...]

Behold the Mysterious at Ripley’s Believe It or Not in the Wisconsin Dells

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I have been compensated for this content, all opinions are my own. Ripley's is the stuff of little boys’ dreams. Full of mystery, amazing artifacts, historical items, and even just plain gross things, I’ve never been to a place quite like this. Ripley’s claims to have everything odd, weird, and unbelievable, this is certainly true. Last summer we visited the Ripley’s Believe It or Not site in the Wisconsin Dells for the first time. It was so much fun. I can’t deny I was as dazzled as the kids. I had never been to a place like this before. The museum is divided into different galleries … [Read more...]

Stay Wild, Stay Wacky, Stay Wonderful, Stay AmericInn & a Giveaway

aerialliftbridgeduluthminnesota

I have been compensated for this post, all opinions are my own. It's summertime! That means it's time for fun road trips and vacations. Whether you prefer to keep it local and visit attractions nearby, or if you like to trek across the country with a car full of supplies and family, summer is all about unwinding and enjoying the sites.  Throughout the years I've had an opportunity to see lots of wild, wacky, and wonderful sites. Traveling with kids is always an adventure. Here is a list of some of our highlights. I'll confess, some of the destinations were not necessarily wacky or … [Read more...]

Power Up & Read this Summer with Scholastic!

scholasticreadingspacesuccess

This post was sponsored by Scholastic to encourage children to read during the summer months, all opinions are my own.  School is officially out for the summer. My boys were super happy to end another successful year of school. No more homework. No more worksheets. No more early mornings. But this relaxed time of year can onset the "summer slide". No, it's not an amusement park ride. The "summer slide" is learning loss that kids experience when they don't stay in school continually. Essentially some of that valuable information they learn gets tossed out of their brains during this … [Read more...]

Create Your Own Meal of Choice at Chipotle

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I have been compensated for this post, all opinions expressed are my own.  I remember the first time I ate at a Chipotle. It was before kids, meaning it was a whole other world. Picky eating didn't really play a part in that experience. Fast-forward around ten years later and now I have three little boys. Eating out with children is an entirely different experience. As my boys get older their preferences are developing. For instance my 10 year old he becoming more distinct in his choices. He used to like fish. He used to like taco seasoning. Now he refuses to eat either. Such is … [Read more...]

Calling All Bloggers! SoFabUOTR Minneapolis 2015

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Calling all bloggers in the Minnesota and Wisconsin area! SoFabU on the Road is coming to Minneapolis in August!  What is SoFabU on the Road? It's a one day blogging conference designed to inspire, educate and bring a sense of community to the somewhat isolated world of blogging.  What is SoFabU? This term refers to Social Fabric University, the social media influencer education component of Social Fabric. This online education community is full of amazing classes on a wide variety of topics- storytelling, SEO, photography and Instagram- the list just keeps growing. … [Read more...]

Exploring Byodo-In Temple, Kahaluu, O’ahu, Hawaii

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At first glance Byodo-In Temple appears to be a magical, imaginary place. Surely nothing this beautiful and idyllic can be for real. Yet within the Valley of the Temples Memorial Park exists this otherworldly place.  Byodo-In Temple was our first destination on O'ahu and was well worth the visit. It doesn't take very long to walk around the grounds, but the beautiful colors and construction add to the allure of this tropical area.  Created in 1968 to honor Japanese immigrants in Hawaii, this temple is a smaller replica of a temple in Uji, Japan.  With … [Read more...]

Angel On My Shoulder: Summer Camp Helps Kids Affected by Cancer

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School is nearly out for the summer and my boys are very excited. They can't wait to take swimming lessons, play soccer, and attend summer camp. My little fellas summer experience is the sort of traditional fun that kids enjoy. This summer other kids will have the opportunity to attend a special camp of a different sort. Angel On My Shoulder is a summer camp created specifically for kids affected by cancer.  Cancer. It's such an ugly word. To live is to have your life affected by this nasty disease. At some point or another everyone is bound to know someone struck by this illness. My … [Read more...]