• Summer Fun

    We just finished up school this week and while we love lots of lounge days I also want to keep my kiddos moving and having a fun Summer break!  I wanted to start it off with a loose plan, of sorts. I used to make a Summer bucket list every year, and the past couple of years I haven’t.

    Feel free to check out some of our past bucket lists!

    Mommy’s Summer Bucket List, 2012 Bucket List, 2013 list2014 Bucket List,

    So this year instead of making a specific bucket list I made this Summer Fun list:

    Let me know what some of your summer plans are!

  • Kid Friendly Lunch Ideas

    This post has been compensated by IHelpMoms.com and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.

    As a busy mom of three, kid friendly lunch ideas are so important because the last thing I want to spend a lot of time on is packing lunches. And while my kids like to eat sandwiches they get bored with them so I am always looking for ways to change up lunch time.

    I am super lucky that none of my kids have food allergies to date, but Tyler is my picky kid so sometimes I have to get creative with lunches. He occasionally has school lunch, but I would say at least half of the time he doesn’t like the option and wants to pack a lunch so I wanted to share a few of his favorite lunches to take.

    That is why I love this bento lunch box set from Bentology. The five separate compartments leave lots of room for food for my always hungry kiddos while keeping everything portion controlled.

    And the fun patterns that they come in keep the kids laughing and entertained! They love their emojo set! And I think I need the Flamingo Set!

    Weekly Menu ideas, Recipes, and more on the blog: https://bentology.com/resources/bentology-blog/

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    This one is totally Summer’s ideal lunch! And Tyler won’t touch mac n cheese!

    They aren’t just for school lunches! Sometimes if we are going to be out and about running errands I love to pack a lunch before we head out the door. I know it is just a matter of time before I hear someone from the back seat say, “I’m hungry” and now I am more than prepared!

    Purchase your own kit with a 25% discount right now through 1/22/18! Use the code ihelp25

    And feel free to check out a few of my past Kid Friendly Lunch Ideas and Nutter Butter Ice Cream Cones.

    Right now you can win a Bentology Bento Kit of your very own! Check out the Giveaway below to enter to win!! You have lots of chances to get your name in the running!

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  • Dinosaur Birthday Party

    My little guy isn’t so little any more. Yesterday Tyler turned 7 years old. I know that he really is still “little” but such a big kid too!
    He is loving first grade and I love to watch him grow. His reading and writing is so great and I love having him read stories to me. And he asked for notes cards and envelopes for his birthday so he can write notes. He is so my child.

    For his birthday he asked for a Dinosaur birthday party and as soon as Summer’s Mermaid Party was over I got to work on a few things.

    Dinosaur Birthday Party

    I really wanted to keep food more simpler than I have before. We did food for Carivores: Chicken nuggets and pigs in a blanket. Herbivores: veggies and ranch. And Sweetivores: Dino footprint cookies.

    We also had Dino eggs which were grapes. Dino bones that were pretzels and Dino teeth that were Bugles. We also had green Din-o-mite punch!

    These plates I use are awesome and I use them for every party I have! I just get a can of spray paint and give them a fresh color for whatever our theme is! check out how I made them in this post from Summer’s Tea Party.

    We had several games that we played. The first was just “Pin the head on the skeleton” and I picked that up from Party City for just a couple of dol1ars. It came with 12 skeleton head stickers, a blindfold and the sheet to put up on that wall. The kids could see out of the bottom of the blindfold if you weren’t paying attention. The we had a couple of non cheaters! (Ha!)

    We also played another game where we tied a string to a balloon and tied the other end around the kids waist. Then once they were all ready we let them loose and they had to stomp the other kids balloons to pop them without getting their own popped. The last balloon standing wins. I think we only had three kids that cried….. The others seemed to enjoy it!

    The last game we played was called Feed the dinosaur. Zachary drew this Dino for me and cut out the mouth then we just put a bucket behind it. We had a bag of plastic golf balls from a game we played over the summer that worked perfectly and the kids seemed to love it. They each took multiple turns!

    Then it was time for presents and cupcakes. Tyler got tons of legos, which he loves so he was super excited and couldn’t wait to get building!

    And next was chocolate cupcakes with chocolate frosting and I used candy corn to make spikes on the back of our Dino!

    To make the leaves I just cut them out with my cricut. Such a time saver!

    I also made shirts for my family. Getting a 15 year old boy to wear a shirt that says “brothersaurus” isn’t easy, but he wanted to stay the night at his friend’s so I told him only if he wore the shirt for the party. #noshameinmygame So here we are: mamasaurus, daddysaurus, brothersaurus, sistersaurus and Tylersaurus.

    Tyler had such a fun party and I think all the kids had a fun time too! You can see the “binoculars” we made using toilet paper rolls, tape and string. Makes for a pretty inexpensive party and the kids enjoyed the time!

  • Summer’s Mermaid Birthday Party

    Last weekend my little girl turned FIVE years old!

    We went back and forth a little on what type of party she wanted, but ultimately settled on a “Mermaid  Birthday Party”.

    Thankfully Pinterest is always my friend and guides me to the best of the best crafters with awesome ideas to create a great party.  Here are some shots from the day. And by “some” shots, I mean, I am sorry for an extremely picture heavy post.

    Welcome Mermaid sign for the front door.

    Summer helped me “design” her very own birthday shirt. She did a pretty good job.

    One of my favorite things in our house has always been our chalkboard wall. The kids play on it all the time and it always gets used for birthdays and holidays.

    Our party was mid day so we just did some finger sandwiches, and snacks.

    I was going to make my own rock candy, but for real, after reading how to do it and that it can take a couple of weeks for the crystals to grow I decided to bag it and just buy them!

    How fun are these marshmallow pops? They are super cute and the were really delicious!

    The clam shells were also a big hit. It is just frosting in between two nilla wafers and a sugar bead for the “pearl”

    Love my sweet birthday girl!

    Everyone loves mermaids– What is your mermaid name? Mine is Mara Aqua Rain

    I got these hula hoops on clearance a while back so I grabbed them for “party gifts” for the girls!

    Last minutes I decided I didn’t want to make cupcakes myself. I was swamped with other things and was just running out of time. Walmart to the rescue and the colors were exactly what I wanted. I made these adorable little cake toppers to go with them.

    A pinata was really the only “game” I planned and the kids all left with bags of candy!

    Look at all these sweet girls (and one boy!)! I am so grateful for all of our amazing friends that gathered around my girl to celebrate!

    After presents and some cake and lots of playing with friends it was time to wrap up our day of fun!

    This little Mermaid was as happy as a clam! Happy Birthday sweet girl!

  • Redneck BBQ

    A while back we were sitting around with friends, talking about the summer months ahead and somehow we got on the subject of a Redneck BBQ. Travis and I had talked about how fun something like that might be, so when we were talking with friends we decided we needed to do it!

    I headed to Pinterest and did some google searching and found tons of fun ideas. I took ideas from several invitations and made one of our own to fit what we were looking for.  How fun is this invite??

    We wanted to make a fun photo booth but was struggling on what exactly I wanted. I thought about making a “mugshot” back ground so people could each hold their own sign for why they went to jail. We also thought about using a piece of plywood and stringing up tin cans, etc. But ultimately just decided to use a backdrop that looks like wood and make some fun signs. Cardboard signs and sharpies make everything a little more redneck.

    No redneck party would be complete without “Redneck Win Chimes” and a “Redneck Dream Catcher”

    Games really keep a party going so I made “drinko” which is a fun drinking game. Who doesn’t want to Take a Shot or Give a Shot? I also did a Ping Pong toss, an antler ring toss (not shown but we did attach actual antlers to the side of our house and threw rings at them) and a toilet paper toss (also not shown but we used a toilet seat that was attached to a metal bar and we tossed toilet paper rolls  into it.)

    When we first decided to do a Redneck BBQ we started talking about what we were going to wear. I immediately knew I wanted to have a “pregnant belly”, cans in my hair, a black eye and a fake cigarette. I also wanted to get a fake ankle monitor but they were $20 on amazon and I didn’t want to spend that much on it!

    We found Travis’ wig right away and knew he was going to do cut off shorts, an armband tattoo and another tattoo with names crossed out, but the shirt was a late edition the week before the party. We just had a do it! Thanks Pinterest for that one!

    We really weren’t sure if our friends were going to dress up, or to what extent, but when they started showing up at our house it confirmed why these people are our friends!

    These three ladies here with me are some of the best of the best. And this picture makes me laugh every time I see it.

    Almost everyone dressed up! And it was 95 degrees that day so we were all on fire. That belly I was wearing was a heat magnet!! And my beer can rollers weren’t staying in after a while so I finally had to just take them out!

    How awesome does my husband look!?! I can’t stop laughing over his look!

    When my friend and her husband showed up we couldn’t believe it. Travis and DJ had never met, but they dressed almost identical! We told no one what we were wearing so it was awesome that they were twinning. Right down to the same wig, cutoff shorts, arm band tattoo and a tattoo with names crossed off. One of the funniest parts was that on their name tattoo, DJ had the name “Daisy” crossed off and Travis had Daisy as his uncrossed off name!

    It was such a fun day! Even though it was so darn hot we all had a great time!

    Everyone voted on the King and Queen of trash. And Dalton and Faith won! Dalton won a “weener kleaner” and a back scratcher made with beer bottle tops. and Faith won dual back scratchers!

    I think everyone had a pretty great time! We eat a ridiculous amount of food, ate twinkies, ding dongs and zingers for dessert, drank Coors light, margaritas and juice for the kids, of course! And visited and played antler ring toss late into the night.  It was a party for the books!