The Joy and Benefits of a Family Garden #GroSomethingGreater

Grandma's Garden

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Miracle-Gro. All opinions are 100% mine. No matter the type of garden, anything is possible.  The sky is truly the limit.  I have been gardening with my grandma since I was a kid and am thrilled to now share this priceless experience with my children. Family Garden We make time to help Gram in the yard as often as possible.  From fruits and … [Read more...]

Teach Kids How To Grow Lunch

urbmat

I am desperately trying to find new ways to get my kids excited about eating healthier.  They are relatively pretty good eaters, but since I am a future Registered Dietitian (RD) there is always room for improvement!  This spring, I am planning to teach them how to grow their own lunch! It will make veggies more fun and educate them about entire process. How To Grow a Garden Made EASY This … [Read more...]

Fun with The Croods and DVD Combo Pack

the croods

I received The Croods as part of the Fox Home Entertainment Network program.  All opinions are my own.  The Croods is a brilliant animated film that can be enjoyed by the entire family.  Ages 4 to 104 will laugh and appreciate this fantastical family as they adventure through spectacular caves and landscapes, meeting surprises and exotic creatures along the way. The Croods Activity … [Read more...]

Top of the Rock NYC Observation Deck Tickets

Rock NYC Observation Deck Tickets Giveaway

Compensation was received for this Top of the Rock giveaway.  All opinions are my own.  With Fall rolling through and everything cooling down, there's never a better time of year to take a stroll through Manhattan. A New York sightseeing trip is fun for the whole family, and if you're going to visit the Big Apple, you'll want the best experience a ticket can provide. A ticket to Top of the Rock … [Read more...]

Our New Favorite Place in Chicago #LoveThisCity #MC

Boating on Lake Michigan

Chicago is a beautiful city that I grow more impressed with each time I visit.  Growing up in the suburbs my whole life, I have made frequent trips to the city of Chicago over the years.  As an adult, I find that I appreciate everything that it has to offer so much more.  I pay better attention to my surroundings and soak it all in.  The people, the architecture, the sounds, the energy, the food - … [Read more...]

Date Night with Fireworks on the Seadogs in Chicago

Seadogs Fireworks Cruise Chicago #spon

Thanks to Madame Deals and their #PayItForward campaign my sister and I got to experience the Seadogs Fireworks Cruise in Chicago.  We received this experience free of charge and all opinions are my own. Date Night in Chicago So...  I have a boyfriend.  It's such a big step saying that to the entire internet but since we did the whole posting of "in a relationship" on Facebook, I figured it's … [Read more...]

Seadogs Fireworks Cruise For GNO in Chicago

chicago skyline

The Seadogs Fireworks Cruise made for a perfect girls' night out in Chicago.  We got to take the cruise at no cost as a part of a promotion through Madame Deals and their #Payit4ward campaign.  All opinions are my own. Seadogs Fireworks Cruise Shelley and I were downtown all week for BlogHer.  Our lovely friend, Shauna from Adventures of 8, flew in from Texas to attend the conference, as … [Read more...]

See Disneynature’s BEARS on Earth Day with the Family

Disneynature BEARS cute

Alright, I know Earth Day isn't for a few months but I just couldn't wait to share this with you!  Disneynature has created yet another amazing film.  It gets better...  If you see it with your family during opening week (April 18-24, 2014) Disneynature, via the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund will make a contribution to the National Park Foundation!  Add it to your calendars!  :D It doesn't … [Read more...]

Tubing on the Illinois River with a WOW Tube

Tubing on the Illinois River with a WOW Tube

Tubing is probably the highlight of boating.  We chose our new boat because it was capable of towing a tube!  I was beyond thrilled to receive the Yankee Coupe towable raft from WOW for review.  All opinions are my own. Tubing on the Illinois River Finding the best place to tube around here can be quite challenging.  We live 5 minutes from the Cal Sag river, but people are advised to have … [Read more...]

Experience @MasterCard #Priceless Opportunities in #Chicago #MC

Chicago Wrigley Field

My grandma has been a die hard Chicago Cubs fan since I can remember.  When I was little I used to look forward to watching her in the kitchen, pausing in mid-dish-drying to catch a play and then hollering at the tube in excitement when her Cubbies would prevail.  Now, whenever I see those primary reds and blues, I am reminded of happy childhood memories.  Thanks to MasterCard Priceless … [Read more...]

Take Your Dog on an Adventure Beyond The Fence

happy dog beyond the fence

I'm thrilled to bring you a super fun sponsored post about bringing your dog along on your adventures.  The "Dog Days" of summer are upon us. Dog Fence DIY encourages exploration beyond the fence! Adventures Beyond the Fence Taking your dog outside of his normal environment can be a little stressful at first.  Depending on the temperament of your pup, you may worry about him running away, … [Read more...]

Chicago River and Lake Michigan Boating #DiscoverBoating

lake michigan boating

I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Discover Boating. I received collateral to facilitate my review and a promotional item as a thank you for participating. Since we live so close to Lake Michigan, it would be a shame not to fully enjoy it, right?  Since my last post about boating, a lot has happened.  I mentioned that my husband had a fishing boat, but we … [Read more...]

Seadog Chicago Boat Rides for Thrill Seekers

seadog extreme

I am receiving free tickets to a Seadog Fireworks Cruise during BlogHer in a few weeks.  Boating down the Chicago River and in Lake Michigan, it's easy to spot several Seadog boats.  I never knew exactly what they did, though... Turns out there are four different Seadog Cruises to choose from.  Shelley described each one of them in her Seadog post.  The one that most intrigues (and slightly … [Read more...]

Fun Things for Kids to Prevent Summer Brain Drain

fun things for kids to do to prevent summer brain drain #MSIsummerbrain

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of the Chicago Museum of Science and Industry.  It is my pleasure to bring you fun things for kids to do over summer break.  All thoughts and opinions are my own. Do you find that your kids' minds turn to mush after summer break? I know mine does if I let it be inactive for too long.  Sheesh, it only takes one long weekend and I feel like I don't … [Read more...]

What To Do and Where To Go in Chicago

Where to go in Chicago Seadog Cruise

Sometimes it is hard to figure out what to do or where to go in Chicago.  Not because there isn't enough going on, but because there is so much, it can be overwhelming to make a decision.  I am so excited that Jen and I will be going on the Fireworks Seadog  cruise while attending BlogHer in Chicago this July.  If you have never been on a Seadog cruise, it should definitely be on your list of what … [Read more...]

Sweet Summer Treats at the Lakeshore East Mariano’s

Vero Gelato at Lakeshore East Mariano's

Grocery shopping is not something my kids usually get very excited about.  However, when I asked who wanted to go to Mariano's, I got an enthusiastic "ME!" from both kids.  They were even more thrilled when I said we were going to shop for sweet summer treats and get Vero Gelato at the Lakeshore East location. Sweet Summer Treats at the Lakeshore East Mariano's If you've never had Vero … [Read more...]

Discover Boating this Summer

girls weekend boating

I am a Discover Boating ambassador through a Mom Central campaign and cannot wait for the summer to fully kick in.  As soon as the weather permits, you will find us on the water.  Boating is a great way to relax, have fun, and spend quality time with the family. Peaceful Boating My husband has a fishing boat and just loves to fish.  While you won't find me with a pole, there's definitely a … [Read more...]

Fun With 3D Jigsaw Puzzles from Wrebbit

Fun with Jigsaw Puzzles

I have an obsession with jigsaw puzzles that is almost to an unhealthy level.  Jigsaw puzzles bring out the best and worst of my OCD tendencies.  When offered the chance to review a 3D Jigsaw Puzzle from Wrebbit3D, I couldn't resist.  I received the Hobbiton™ 3D Jigsaw Puzzle.  My son actually picked this one out because he is a Lord Of The Rings fanatic. 3D Jigsaw Puzzles When I start a … [Read more...]

Monopoly Game Save Your Token

Monopoly Game Save Your Token

The game of Monopoly is a classic in most families.  I have many fond memories (some recent) of long games of Monopoly with friends and family members.  Most people have a favorite token and for me, that's the Scottie Dog.  He is the game piece that I must have.  Turns out he is up for retirement, along with some other pieces, and needs to be saved! Game of Monopoly - Save Your Token! One … [Read more...]

Fun at Best Buy with Skylanders Giants

Skylanders Giants Tree Rex

We love the video game Skylanders Spyro's Adventure.  We play it all the time at our house on the Wii.  When we heard about the Skylanders Giants, we had to see what they are all about!  Best Buy has this whole area set up to play the game using a Giant, Tree Rex, and some of the other characters as well. Fun at Best Buy After waiting for a few kids to take their turns playing the game, I … [Read more...]

Fun in Chicago with the ElliptiGo

ElliptiGo elliptical bike

We do not enjoy Chicago nearly as much as we should since we live just half an hour from the city.  So when Jodi found a Groupon to rent two ElliptiGos for 4 hours to go wherever we want in the city I was all about it. Fitness Experts - Chicago I have to start by saying that these guys are AWESOME!  After purchasing two Groupons (one for Jodi and her son, and one for my son and me) we had … [Read more...]

Game Night with Monopoly Millionaire

game night with monopoly

Game night is something to really look forward to.  Whether it's with friends, family or both, it can be such a blast.  Monopoly is such a classic and still a favorite of ours.  I was eager to see what this new version was all about.  Monopoly Millionaire is a new twist on the game that most of us know and love! Game Night Fun Just recently we visited Mike's parents.  They live about 3 hours … [Read more...]

Chicago Fine Chocolate Show Announcement

chocolate show giveaway

The Chicago Fine Chocolate Show is coming this November.  I am excited to say that I will be attending.  What better way to spend a great day out in our fabulous city by attending a show dedicated to CHOCOLATE?! Chicago Fine Chocolate Show The Chicago Fine Chocolate Show will be taking place on Friday, November 16 through Sunday, November 18, 2012, at Chicago’s Navy Pier.  This is the … [Read more...]

Summer is NOT Over Yet Get More Vacation

kids smiling on vacation

One More Vacation Although it may not seem like it, there is still time to squeeze in at least one more family vacation this summer. Especially with all the extra perks Embassy Suites has to offer. Time flies when you're having fun, and boy did we have a blast this summer!  I can't believe the kids and I are already heading back to school (next week--seems so early?) Thanks to this … [Read more...]

We Got More Vacation Thanks to Embassy Suites

beautiful Chicago

More Vacation Getting more vacation time takes planning and forethought.  However, Embassy Suites also makes it very easy to get more vacation.  With two room suites, free cooked-to-order breakfast, in-room snacks, and a nightly Manager's Reception, we had plenty of funds to spend on other fun things!  Not having to spend so much on food is a huge deal while vacationing. Day One From the … [Read more...]

NRPA Blog Tour Free Family Fun Outdoors

the bean Chicago

Free Family Fun What could be better than a day of free family fun?  Living just outside Chicago, we don't take advantage of all the phenomenal public parks nearly as often as we should.  But we made a plan and spent a day playing in the famous Millennium Park. Parks like these are great for the whole family.  There is room to run around, all kinds of areas to explore, things to learn and … [Read more...]

World Market Summer Getaway Sweeps and Review

World Market fish kite

Summer Getaway While we can't afford a "real" summer getaway this year, that isn't stopping us from making the most of family time together.  Thanks to World Market we got some great items that make mini-vacations possible just about anywhere.  Whether we can make a day trip to the beach or just a backyard picnic, these fabulous products set the mood for summer fun and relaxation. Shopping … [Read more...]

Get MORE Vacation with Embassy Suites

Embassy Suites logo

More Vacation I don't know anyone that doesn't want more vacation time especially to spend time with family.  Embassy Suites Hotels, a Hilton Worldwide brand and one ofParents magazine's "10 Best Hotel Chains for Families of 2012", gives guests more during every stay.  The full service, upscale chain offers two-room suites, free cooked-to-order breakfast and a nightly Manager's Reception with … [Read more...]

Disney Pixar’s BRAVE at Studio Movie Grill in Wheaton

BRAVE screening at Studio Movie Grill Wheaton, IL

BRAVE Screening at Studio Movie Grill We got to experience a great evening of family fun at Studio Movie Grill in Wheaton, IL.  We were able to watch Disney Pixar's BRAVE before it was even released to the public!  We all felt like super big shots.  :) Plus, this was our first time at a theater like this where you are served food and drinks during the film. We all piled into the fabulous Kia … [Read more...]

Movies On Demand Summer Movies

movies on demand giveaway

Movies On Demand Summer Movies Movies On Demand is definitely the most convenient way to order movies.  We belong to Netflix, but sometimes the hottest releases take too long for me!  With Movies On Demand you can usually get them the same day as they are released on DVD. This summer we are even more excited about movie nights because we created a way to allow us to watch them outside.  … [Read more...]

Journey 2: The Mysterious Island Review

journey 2

Journey 2: The Mysterious Island We received Journey 2: The Mysterious Island Blu-ray combo pack for review.  I was extra excited to watch it on Blu-ray since we just got a new Blu-ray player.  It really is a more intense experience when the screen is so crystal clear.  It's especially amazing when the movie takes place in an exotic location like this! Journey 2 Synopsis: The follow-up to the … [Read more...]

New and Improved Family Fun at Medieval Times

entrance

Family Fun at Medieval Times With a whole new show including a revamped castle, feast, musical scores, lights, effects and performances this night is one to remember.  I was absolutely honored to be invited to a VIP night at the Chicago-land Castle where we were treated like royalty.  This kind of family fun is hard to describe--it's exciting, exhilarating, emotional and completely … [Read more...]

Review ~ Napkins With A Twist

Napkins With a Twist Cover

Napkins with a Twist written by: David Stark How fun!  Ever since I was a little kid, I've loved Origami.  I used to fold my gum wrappers into tiny frogs and make them hop all over the recess playground.  As I've gotten older, I don't have the time to play as much, but haven't lost my love for the art of folding different materials. Now, I can bring my dinner table to life with all kinds of … [Read more...]

Preview ~ Skylanders Spyro’s Adventure

Starter Pack Contents Image

Skylanders Spyro's Adventure™ We are so excited to announce that we will be hosting a giveaway for this game when it is available! Bring Your Toys to Life™ This game truly changes the way we look at toys and video games!  With this game, the action figures become INTERaction figures!  For the first time ever, players can personally customize and power-up their toys, as well as bring … [Read more...]

Bob Evan’s 41st Annual Farm Festival

4607_BE_FarmFestival_logo_4c_new

When:  October 14, 15, 16, 2011 Where:  Bob Evan's Farm, Rio Grande, OH   Approximate Cost: Admission is just $5 for adults, $3 for children 6-18 and Free for children 5 and under! Why: For FUN!!!  :D I was lucky enough to get picked for the blogger correspondent trip.  Unfortunately. due to the recent downfall in my mother's health had to opt out of this event.  I am terribly … [Read more...]

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