Thursday, November 5, 2020

All About The New Aldi Advent Calendars

The new Aldi holiday 2020 advent calendars just arrived in stores yesterday, November 4 and they are SO fun! There's literally an advent calendar for everyone in the family ya'll! Including your cat!! Yes you read that right, they have advent calendars for pets ya'll!! 

Cheese Advent Calendar 
24 days of imported mini cheeses
$14.99

Cat Advent Calendar 25 days of cat treats!
$5.89

Coffee Advent Calendar
Includes 24 Kcups
$9.99

Beer Advent Calendar 
$49.99
*Limit 2*

Hard Seltzer Advent Calendar 
Includes 24 8.5 oz cans 
$34.99

Wine Advent Calendar
Includes 24 187 m.L bottles
$69.99
*Limit 2* These are hard to find and sell out fast!




Paw Patrol Advent Calendar 
Includes 7 pups, 2 pup friends, 15 accessories
$19.99

Cars Advent Calendar
$16.99

Barbie Advent Calendar
Includes Barbie doll, clothes, accessories
$24.99

Disney Storybook Collection Advent Calendar
Includes 24 Disney books. There is also a Frozen themed calendar of books.
$9.99

Premium Chocolate Advent Calendar
$4.99

Chocolate Advent Calendars
$4.99

Advent Calendar Candle
$4.99

Be sure to head to your local Aldi soon because they Advent Calendars tend to sell out fast! 

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Monday, November 2, 2020

Disney Holiday #Giveaway

It's time for a Disney themed holiday giveaway ya'll!! I am SO excited to share with you that I am hosting a holiday giveaway! There will be not one but three winners selected!! Prizes include adorable Disney Christmas plate, Disney Store Santa Mickey Mouse Plush and one lucky winner will win the grand prize $50 Disney gift card! 
*Image Courtesy of Disney Store*
How cute is Santa Mickey Mouse?! One lucky winner will win this cutie! 

*Image Courtesy of Disney Store*
I just LOVE this adorable Minnie Mouse Christmas plate! One lucky winner will win this from shopdisney.com


To enter click the link below and follow the prompts. 
a Rafflecopter giveaway



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Where To Start When Planning A Family Vacation

Many people ask me how long it takes me to plan our family vacations. Today I am going to share with ya'll some super easy ways to get started planning your own family vacation. If you are going somewhere you've been before such as your favorite beach then it should be really easy to get started planning. However, if you are going somewhere totally new that you've never been before then it is does take a lot more time to plan ahead and do some research on where you would like to stay. 

Vacation Planning Details

For starters, before I really dive into planning our family vacation I usually ask my three children this simple question: Where would you like to go for our next family vacation? I will usually give them 3 choices. I asked the kids if they would prefer to go on a cruise or Disney World and they chose a cruise!! Sadly, due to Coronavirus our cruise was cancelled this past May 2020. We ended up going to the beach. 

After you have decided on your destination I recommend doing some research. My favorite website to research are typically www.TripAdvisor.com. You can search your destination on their website and read many great reviews on hotels, restaurants, attractions, etc. Also you can see which hotels are ranked the best and see great photos. Tip: do not stay at hotel that is under construction. This can create many irritating obstacles such as loud noise, closed attractions, limited dining, etc. Tip: Check the resort's website to see if they are offering any promotions/special discounts.



Select your travel dates but before you actually book the resort check around on various websites to see if it is a lower cost to book directly on the resort website or on a third party site such as Expedia.com

Once your trip is actually booked put those dates on your calendar and be sure to let your work know asap. 

Now for the fun part---planning! I really enjoy planning out our family vacations. When we went to Oahu, Hawaii I spent about a month planning our vacation. I did a lot of research on fun family friendly places to visit in Hawaii. I also researched which area of Oahu we wanted to rent a condo at. We wanted to be within walking distance to restaurants, the beach and activities to avoid renting a car for the entire vacation. We knew we wanted a condo with a kitchen so we could avoid eating out every meal. We like having a full kitchen to cook meals and a full size refrigerator is always great when you have 5 people! Read all about our Hawaii adventures here


Just remember to allow time for actually relaxing on your vacation and of course budget for the vacation. I like to create a spreadsheet and budget each meal out, airfare, hotel/condo rental, spending money, activities money, etc. so I know somewhat what my vacation budget needs to be. 

Be sure to check out my post about packing for a roadtrip


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Tuesday, September 29, 2020

5 Budget Friendly Family Dinners #Recipes

1. Aldi frozen lasagna
This is my go to meal if I don't feel like actually cooking! 
Aldi frozen lasagna is one of my kids favorite meal's! This family dinner cost less than $10 total. The Aldi lasagna will feed 4 people and cost less than $5. The canned pea's are 50 cent also from Aldi and the garlic cheese bread is from Walmart $3.


2. Chicken Fajitas
This family dinner cost less than $10 and it is so easy to make! I use Tyson frozen chicken strips from Walmart ($5 for a big bag that will make 2 dinners) and frozen stir fry veggies from Walmart ($1) and I also use Old El Paso chicken fajitas seasoning ($1)  and Old El Paso soft shell flour tortillas. To make this meal I cook the chicken in a separate frying pan and I cook the frozen veggies in a frying pan. *Be sure to drain the water from the veggies prior to adding the chicken* Once the chicken is cooked I add it to the veggie frying pan and I also add the fajita seasoning packet. This takes about 5 minutes to cook. Easy peasy! My kids love this meal also! I also add some shredded cheese to their fajitas.
Chicken Fajitas are so easy to make!

3. Chicken Enchilada's
This family meal is super easy to make also and my kids love it! Very few ingredients and costs less than $10. Ingredients: Chicken breast, soft shell taco's, 2 lb bag of mexican shredded cheese, Old El Paso red enchilada sauce. 
To make this I use a casserole dish. Cook the chicken breast in a frying pan. Then place them in boiling water for 3 minutes. Remove and let cool. Then using a fork pull the chicken apart. Add 1/2 the can of sauce to the casserole dish. Then place the soft shell taco's over the sauce. Add shredded chicken then cover with remaining sauce. Sprinkle 2 lb bag of mexican cheese over the top. Bake 350 for 30 minutes.

Delicious!



4. Frozen Crispy Honey Chicken & Rice

Yummy Chinese Honey Chicken & Broccoli & Rice

I purchase this frozen meal for $7 and a box of white rice ($3). This is another super easy meal and my kids love it! Cheaper than ordering Chinese food and you could also add frozen egg rolls to make this a bigger meal. 

5. Spaghetti

My kids absolutely love spaghetti! Sometimes if I haven't had a chance to go to the grocery store and we don't have any ground beef I will just make spaghetti noodles with red sauce and no meat. Either way the kids love spaghetti and this is my go to meal. They could eat spaghetti every single night if I made it! I also usually add garlic bread or croissants and pea's to this meal. Spaghetti is such an affordable budget friendly meal too! I buy a huge pack of spaghetti at Aldi for just $1.50 and it will last for at least 2 weeks. 




Sunday, September 6, 2020

Great Homeschool Curriculum For Elementary Students + How To Get Started #Homeschooling

It's that time again, back to school time is upon us! I know a lot of my friends have decided to switch over to homeschooling this year due to covid-19 school closures and opting out of virtual learning. Today I am going to share with you some really great homeschool curriculum for elementary pre K- 5th grade.

ABCmouse.com
If you want a super easy option that doesn't require you to purchase a ton of curriculum workbooks and supplies then I would recommend ABCmouse.com This is recommended for children ages 2 - 8 years old. I'd recommend trying the free month trial and seeing if you like it first. The monthly subscription is only $9.95/month after the free trial. ABCmouse offers over 2,000 printables too which is great! I really love the fact that they have over 450 books available. My kids really love the interactive zoo and the aquarium. 
     

The Good and the Beautiful
Another great homeschool curriculum that I love that incorporates the Bible is The Good and the Beautiful
The Good and the Beautiful is a faith based curriculum for grades PreK-8 and high school. They have great 'electives' also such as a Nature Notebook, Creative Writing Notebook, Creative Arts & Crafts to name a few. I really love that they offer Language Arts curriculum that requires no daily prep time. Simply open the workbook and get started! Here's a great video to watch all about getting started with homeschooling: How To Get Started Homeschooling 

 

Here is a really great video sharing a homeschool room makeover! I just love this homeschool room!! 

   

For more great information and tips on homeschooling check out some of my favorite homeschool blog Mom's: 
http://alwayslornamarie.com/    Super creative diy Mom of 4. Full time RV family. Great tips for organizing too!
https://www.confessionsofahomeschooler.com/    Great printables!! Great curriculum resources!
https://www.instagram.com/shantripp/     Great homeschool info, parenting advice, CPR course
https://herheartshomeschool.wordpress.com/    Great homeschool info, curriculum, diy
https://www.instagram.com/faith_and_nature_homeschool/  Great homeschool info, curriculum, montessorish 


Wednesday, August 26, 2020

My Favorite Monthly Subscription Boxes For Kids #Homeschool #Steam #KidFriendly

Do your kids love to cook? If so, check out Raddish Kids    
I signed my 3 children up for Raddish Kids monthly cooking club and I can't wait to share with ya'll our first kit when it arrives. My kids really enjoy helping me bake muffins and brownies so I know they will LOVE this monthly subscription! Each kit includes 3 recipe guides that are illustrated and laminated. Plus each kit includes a kitchen tool and a hands on craft, experiment or food game. A detailed grocery list is provided also. *Additional kitchen tools and aprons can be purchased for siblings*  You can visit their website at https://www.raddishkids.com/ to sign up. Each kit cost $24.95 per month and if you sign up for 6 months you will receive a free apron. 

Wonder Crate
Wonder Crate is perfect for children ages 8 -11 years old. Each kit includes a hands on activity, a biography book. You may choose your theme: Activists, Artists or Innovators. Each monthly subscription cost $29.95. Perfect for early readers. 

Young Woodworkers Kit

Each woodworking kit is designed to make it easy for kids to follow along and learn. The instructions are easy and inviting—perfectly suited for the 7-12 age range. Your young builder's first three kits will include 5 kid-sized, high-quality tools they'll use again and again including a tape measure, screwdriver, jeweler's screwdriver, carpenter's square and hammer. The first shipment is just $9.99. I have signed my 10 year old son up for this kit and I will be sharing our experience next month. Check out their website at Young Woodworkers Kit 

Kiwi Co
I just love these super cute crates! How Kiwi Co works is you select your child's age and then you can choose the crate. The crates are designed to inspire kids to become creative problem solvers. They have so many cool options ranging from craft crates, science and engineering crates, geography and culture, etc. Each month your package will arrive with instructions and all the supplies needed for your child to get creative! Best of all, you can switch crate lines anytime and there is no monthly commitment. The crates cost $19.95 per month. Visit their Kiwi Co to learn more.
Tinker Crate perfect for ages 9 - 16

Atlas Crate perfect for ages 6 - 11 


Highlights Kids Book Club
My kids love Highlights magazines and hidden picture books. I am so excited that Highlights now offers a monthly subscription box. Boxes are available for preschool, Kindergarten and 1st grade. They also offer a box for ages 0 -2 years old called "Let's Grow!"
Boxes includes 2 practice books that integrate skills practice with fun activities, a poster, reward stickers, double sided writing board. Boxes cost $24.98 *Currently there is a promo on their website for 50% off your first box.* 

Highlights 15 Minutes a Day to School Success first grade subscription box

Little Passports monthly educational subscriptions
This is such a great way to learn about the world, the United States and many great science projects. Perfect for children of all ages. Simply select your age range and pick your theme. Included in your "WORLD" subscription: blue suitcase, your very own passport, a world map, an exclusive country coin and coin board, three fun soft animal squishies, stickers and access to online content. Cost is $20.95 per month  

Included in the "United States" package: USA field guide, USA scratch book, giant USA map. Each month the United States subscription includes learning materials for 2 different states. $18.95 per month.
Be sure to check out their website to learn more information https://www.littlepassports.com/


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Friday, August 14, 2020

All About Our Vacation To #MyrtleBeach

This has been such a crazy summer due to Covid19. Unfortunately our original travel plans changed several times. Originally we were booked on a Caribbean cruise for May 2020. This was cancelled and luckily the cruise line refunded us 100%. We decided to book a vacation in the Florida Keys and we booked a week at a beautiful resort in Marathon, Florida Keys. However....as you know Florida quickly became a Covid19 "Hotspot" and we opted to cancel that vacation. We felt like we would not be able to relax and let our kids enjoy the attractions there without being worried about Covid19 the entire trip. Luckily we did get a 100% refund. And this is how we ended up at North Myrtle Beach! 


We love North Myrtle Beach, SC and we have visited many times over the past few summers. I grew up going to North Myrtle Beach, SC. Our favorite resort is called https://www.kingstonplantation.com/ and this is where we stayed. We booked a two bedroom condo thru VRBO. We had a great week at the beach and pool. We took our kids to mini golf several times and they had a lot of fun! We felt like mini golf was a pretty safe option since it is outside and the golf clubs were all cleaned between golfers. There was not much traffic on the main road which typically in July highway 17 is always bumper to bumper but this was not the case. I feel like the media may have scared the tourist away from Myrtle Beach. Here's a brief video our week at North Myrtle Beach: YouTube video 
mini golf at Molten Mountain 





We opted to get take out for dinner a few times and we also dined at a few restaurants on the patio outside. 
Delicious dinner at https://www.flyingfishmarket.com/ at Barefoot Landing

The Intercoastal Waterway behind us



Things I observed in North Myrtle Beach: 
lifeguards wearing masks
beach umbrella's spaced very far apart (further than I've ever seen them!)
wait staff wearing gloves and masks at restaurants
tables spaced apart at restaurants
masks required to enter shops, restaurants, mini golf, etc. 

Here's a brief video our week at North Myrtle Beach: YouTube video 

The Splash Waterpark at the resort was so much fun! We spent a lot of time here!






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