Fun St. Patricks Day Ideas!

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Fun St. Patricks Day Ideas:
St. Patties day is just around the corner and here are some creative ideas to do with your kids!
1. St. Patricks Day cake pops:
The things you’ll need:
  • -Cake mix
  • -Frosting
  • -Chocolate for melting
  • -Sprinkles for decoration
  • -Lollipop Sticks
  • -Styrofoam block
  • -Green Food coloring
Instructions:
Get a cake mix of your choice. (I prefer a white cake for this recipe because you can add green food coloring).  Bake the cake and let it cool. Completely!!!  Take the cake out of the pan and crumble it finely into a bowl. Choose a frosting of your choice (again, I would use a white frosting for this recipe so that you can add green food coloring), melt it and mix it in with the crumbled up cake.  Use a melon baller to scoop even amounts of cake.  With your hands, make even sized balls.  Place balls on baking sheet lined with wax paper for 10 minutes so that they harden up.  While these are hardening up, start melting your chocolate. Take them out of the freezer and place a popcicle stick in each one.  Once the chocolate is melted, add green food coloring until you reach the desired colored.  Dip the cake balls evenly in the melted chocolate and then stick them into the styrofoam to dry.  Decorate as you want and enjoy with your kids!! 

Family Movie Night

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An awesome way to get the family together is with movie night. Depending on how old your kids are they most likely have a bevy of activities on any given day after school. First, make sure to set up movie night on an evening that everyone is available. Second, get a consensis on what type of movie everyone wants to enjoy. Third, narrow it down to 3 movies and have everyone choose together.

On the evening of the movie night make sure the living room is clean and set up appopriotely so that everyone has a spot. To make the vibe more like a movie theater (and make it more fun for the kids), make a theater snack box. Include as much as you want in this, the more the better though!!! Popcorn is a must, but try to find the at home popcorn holders to get in the spirit. (If you can’t find them in stores, or don’t want to buy them, you can make at home ones with a paper bag and a red and black marker!). Find out everyone’s favorite candy that they want near by during a movie and put those in the basket as well.

Pop in the movie, dim the lights and you are ready to go!!!


Watching Movies with Kids

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If you are watching movies with your kids and they are young, there are some must see movies! Classics that with stay with them their whole life, and hopefully enjoy them so much they will pass their love of them onto their kids.

  1. Disney Classics: Peter Pan, The Lion King, 101 Dalmatians, The Little Mermaid, Sleeping Beauty, Beauty and the Beast, Mary Poppins, The Jungle Book, Aladdin, etc.
  2. The Not so classic Disney’s: Toy Story, Finding Nemo, Up, How to Train your Dragon
  3. Matilda
  4. Home Alone
  5. Homeward Bound
  6. The Wizard of OZ (once they are old enough to not get nightmares from the flying monkeys)

What were your favorite movies as a kid?!  Share your thoughts.


Movie Night

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Change it up!  Makes plans with your family for once a week to all get together and do movie night.  Depending on the week, either decide on a movie that is in theaters that you all want to see or pick a movie that everyone wanted to see but never got the chance to and watch it at home. I recommend only going to see movies in theater once a month or so.  It ends up being pricey if you are taking a whole family.  This is a fun way for the whole family to spend time together, which in this day and age is harder than it sounds,  find common ground that you can all enjoy and share your opinions on with each other afterwards!


Game Snacks

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Alright, it is game time, you are hosting everyone for the big game, and then you have the realization of what do I put out for snacks?! Everyone will be expecting them and will definitely want them once they finish their second beer.  One word, COSTCO.  Costco has the best game snacks by far, Super easy, minimal ingredients, great price for the amount, and mmm mmm mmm delicious!  Must haves; potstickers, tri tip slices, fajitas (you can cut them up into bit size pieces with tooth picks in them for easy serving), pineapple teriyaki meatballs.

For some items that are not as filling, get a veggie platter or make your own!  Cucumber is a great thing to put on the veggie platter because it’s light, salted and crunchy.  To add some flavor to it, sprinkle olive oil and balsamic or squeeze some lemon juice and hot sauce.

And of course you need the classics.  Chips and dip.  I prefer tortilla chips and fresh guacamole. A good guac is hard for anyone to turn down and it will be a guaranteed hit!


Movies with Kids

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Come up with a theme!  Instead of only watching new release movies with the kids take it back to some of your old favorites.  Bring back the classics, teach your kids to appreciate where film came from and how it has changed.  Go back and start in a film era or genre that you especially like (black and whites, musicals, love stories, etc…).  Many kids these days don’t now about how many movies are out there and just stick to new releases.  If you make a theme night to watch movies with your kids you make that evening not just a movie night but an event.  Go to France and watch Gigi, go back to the 50’s and fall in love with Humphrey Bogart in Sabrina.

Have fun with it!


Family Home Activities

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Cooking at home is an awesome family home activity, especially during the holidays.  Getting everyone in the kitchen is a great way to not only give Mom some extra hands when she’s busy, but to make great memories for the kids. Many of the recipes that have been passed down from generation to generation in my family would not have still been around if it were not for the times that these recipes were taught from Mom or Dad to the kids!  Everyone will have fun doing it, learn something new, parents get some help, and the whole family is together!


Family Games – Bringin’ it Back!

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When I think back to my childhood and the good memories I have with my family I realized that many of them are related to games.  I have many other great memories from sports, school, outings, friends, true.  When I think back to the great times that I have had interacting and hanging out with my family however, many of the memories that come to the forefront of my mind are when we would all sit down on the living room floor together and play family games.  These are games that I still play with my family and with friends.  Some of the games that I was, and are still, obsessed with are Clue, Life, Sorry, Scategories, and Rumikub.  These times that my family would all sit around a board, television, off, no cell phones just enjoying each others company are some of the fondest I have because they are not tainted by outside distractions.

Many families will try and get the whole gang together and participate in something fun that is outside of the home, ends up costing a bunch of money, and there always seems to be some sort of a disagreement.  Board game night with the family is underrated in this day and age but if you turn the phones on silent, make the TV black and get everyone in the living room together, you will end feeling nostalgia for your childhood as well as creating great memories for your kids!


The Best TV Snacks

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The office that I work at provides snacks for staff and clients to make a more comfortable experience.  I am usually the one who is in charge of  purchasing the items that we put out and because of this, and the fact that my co workers and I munch on them during the day,  I have the inside scoop of what are the best snacks!  Most of the products at Trader Joe’s are preservative free and have no artificial coloring, having tried a wide variety of many T.J.’s snacks, I have been able to narrow down the ones that I like the best for different situations.  Picnic snacks, chips for dipping, scooping etc, crackers for soup, crackers to go with cheese and any other scenarios you can imagine.

A common time that people tend to snack is when they are relaxing after work while watching TV.  The best TV snacks from Trader Joe’s by far are as follows;

Popcorn with herbs and spices

Popcorn with white cheddar

Savory thin edamame crackers

Sourdough pretzels with honey mustard

Black corn tortilla chips

Everything pretzel thins

On your way home from work the next time you feel like vegging out on the couch for a little, pick one of these up and let me know your take on them and others!!


Home Entertainment

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The best home entertainment experience I have ever had is undoubtedly watching Avatar in 3D in the movie den at a friend’s house.  Yes, I had seen Avatar before (not in theaters though) but compared to this experience I could have been watching it in black and white.  Having a huge 70″ plasma in front of me, surround sound Bose speakers engulfing me, and then the 3D glasses on me, all in a plush leather couch in a movie room with a giant fuzzy blanket (half to keep me warm, half to hide under when the 3D became too realistic) was AMAZING!!!!  I highly recommend investing in these items for the best home entertainment experience. Throw in some popcorn too!