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April Showers? Fun For Hours: 10 Rainy Day Activities

Happy Friday, Kansas City! Although we’re about 2 weeks into spring — it hasn’t feel very springlike lately. With rain in the forecast this next week, our Mom Squad Ambassador, Erin, brings you 10 fun rainy day activities while you wait out the storm. Take a look…

 

April Showers? Fun For Hours: 10 Rainy Day Activities

 

Don’t let those dreary, rainy days of April drag you and your family down! There are plenty of creative ways to enjoy each other’s company indoors without losing your minds. Here are 10 ways to keep the crew entertained on those less than desirable weather days! Be sure to let us know in the comments how your family spends rainy days!

 

#1 Play board games

Here are some awesome board game ideas from fellow Mom Squad blogger, Brigette!

 

#2 Build forts

I recently spotted some fort building kits on Amazon but you could just get creative with the kitchen table and chairs, some blankets and some clothespins! Last summer, we stayed inside during a super hot day and built an air fort! It was fantastic! We taped a bed sheet to the floor with heavy packing tape and taped other end of the sheet to a box fan. It was a huge hit with my kids, ages 2 and 7!

 

#3 Read!

Reading is so important for kids and it can be so fun! Build your home library for those rainy days by shopping for books at garage sales, thrift stores and consignment sales. Take turns reading aloud to your kids and having them read aloud to you. If you are into reading on electronic devices, you can check out adult and children’s books through Mid-Continent Public Library without leaving your home!

 

#4 Dance Party

We have an under the counter radio in the kitchen and it is the best thing ever! We would turn up the music and turn the kitchen floor into a dance floor! You could even have a dance contest and take turns with the kids and parents being judges!

 

#5 Science Experiments

A few weeks ago, we tried a few experiments from a book we checked out at the library called “Usborne 100 Science Experiments.” It turned out to be a great book with lots of easy and fun experiments with stuff we already had on hand. One experiment, which my daughter LOVED, was called foaming monster. Basically, you make a monster out of a pop bottle and construction paper. Then you create a chemical reaction with baking soda, vinegar, a drop of dish soap and food coloring. It took a little tweaking but it so much fun!

 

#6 Art with Recyclables

With every day recyclables, you can make all kinds of cool things! Who else’s kids hoard the empty paper towel and toilet paper rolls?? Empty milk jugs? Cans? Time to bring out that stash and see what you can come up with! The possibilities are endless.

 

#7 Make Play dough or Slime

Time to get messy! The latest craze is making slime with simple ingredients: glue, water, borax, glitter, and food coloring. We played with ours for weeks after we made it!

 

#8 Try out a new recipe

Dust off those cook books and get your kids in the kitchen to bake up some yummy goodies or cook up a warm meal to help with the rainy day blues.

 

#9 Movie Day

Have your kids make “tickets”, pop some popcorn, spread out the pillows and blankets, turn down the lights and enjoy a family movie like Pete’s Dragon, which was recently released on Netflix! Check out my review of it.

 

#10 Play in the Rain

Ok, so I know this isn’t an “indoor activity” but come on! Kids absolutely LOVE to slosh around in the rain and jump in every puddle possible. I couldn’t leave this one off the list! So, channel your inner child and get out there and get wet!

What type of rainy day activities do you have for your family? Share in the comments!

From iFamily to Yours,


How to Embrace Yourself Even When You’re a Hot Mess!

Hello, Kansas City! We’re bringing you a personal (and fun) post for you from our Mom Squad Ambassador, Connie, today. Parenthood and life is just hard sometimes, and many of us feel like we’re being pulled in a million different directions. Connie reminds us all that it’s okay to be a hot mess — we’re all in this together. Take a look…

How to Embrace Yourself Even When You're a Hot Mess!

How to Embrace Yourself Even When You’re a Hot Mess!

In a society full of people who make parenting and life and working all look so easy, I am that girl. The girl who is always late. The girl who’s clothes are comfortable first, and cute..maybe. The girl who drinks sometimes and sings terrible karaoke. The girl who needs to carry post it notes to write down what she is leaving the room for so she won’t forget by the time she gets to her destination. The girl who says exactly what she is thinking, when she is thinking it, instead of thinking about whether or not it should be said. The girl loves passionately and gets excited about everything. I am that girl. And I am proud of it.
Embracing your inner hot mess can sometimes be a struggle. We all have that one friend who makes it all look so easy. Her hair is done, her clothes match, her kids look adorable and her house is clean. Ha. I am so not that girl. You can choose one or the other. Either I look put together or the house does. I have two signature looks: homeless and Sporty Spice (minus all the scary makeup and platforms). My fancy outfits usually involve leggings and Chucks. I sometimes feel like I have so much going on in my head that I will never get it all done, so I sit on the couch for an hour just pondering the complete craziness of it all and realize that I’ve just made myself late for whatever the days obligation happens to be.
I love my children fiercely and unconditionally and I try so hard to always be patient and present and the best possible mother I can be. But I also sometimes feed them microwave pancakes for dinner and yell at them for something minor because I’m stressing about something else that has nothing to do with them. I like to think that by being the imperfect mess that I am, I am teaching them to just be who they are.

Apologize for their mistakes and move on with it. Life is too short and parenting is way too hard to stress over every misstep and bad day.
I am emotional and excited about everything. Yay tshirts have armholes! Hooray, my favorite song is on the radio! QT white peach tea makes my day. I am basically a 3 year old. I am the girl who dances at the bowling alley after she throws the ball, or at the gym between sets, or in the grocery store aisle. And let’s not get started on the dance parties in the car. My car stereo is often on max volume, especially if the sunroof is open, and my kids and I are car dancing all our cares away. Now, my dance moves are not especially dignified, and I am okay with that. I’m having fun and that is all that matters. Being emotional and easily excitable means that I am often undignified and wound up. But it also means that I am genuinely enthusiastic about life and the people who are in mine.
I can’t keep track of where I am supposed to be and when. Ever. I am constantly late, not because I am inconsiderate or think that I am above being on time, its because I genuinely cannot get it together sometimes. I couldn’t figure out which shirt to wear with what leggings, and then I didn’t realize that my daughter hadn’t brushed her hair yet, and she isn’t currently wearing shoes, nor can she find shoes because her room is a disaster. And my son is dressed, but his shirt is too small and has some of his breakfast stuck to it and he’s got blueberry pancakes on his face. Then I step outside and realize I have no shoes on. Once I get the shoes, I realize I left the gift for the party or the water bottle for practice or the check for dance, and I have to run back inside and get it.
I am that girl, and I am okay with it. I have to be, because try as I may, I can’t change who I am. I will always be the girl who trusts first and gets burned later, and who shows up late to your party, but with a very thoughtful gift, and who’s kids are sweet and thoughtful and sometimes dirty or rocking some bed head. I am that girl who is doing the best I can and loving every minute of this crazy life I lead. My kids are happy and loved and just like me as far as the hot mess factor goes. I am not the girl people come to for fashion advice or tips on how to have it all together. I am not the girl who feeds her kids well balanced meals all the time. I am not the girl who never yells or cusses or drinks. I am not the girl who has mastered the art of motherhood, or adulthood even for that matter. I am however, the girl who knows how to embrace this crazy life and just enjoy it. I am the girl who can laugh at myself, apologize when I need to and defend my friends whenever they need it. Life is hard.

Parenting?!?!? Crazy hard. Having it all together, all the time? Impossible. So just embrace the mess. Own it. Know that not everyday is going to be perfect, but sometimes it’s the imperfect days that we cherish the most. And know that I see you, rocking your oversized sweats and t-shirt with baby food all down the front at Walmart, just trying to get through the day. You are my people.

From iFamily to Yours,

 

 

 

 

 

 


Work It Wednesdays: How to Cultivate Self-Love in Your Every Day Life

Happy Wednesday, Kansas City! We’re starting a fun, new series to bring on a healthy Spring – Work It Wednesdays. Our Mom Squad Ambassador (and fitness guru), Connie, kicks it off this week with the center of it all — self-love. It can be tough to find balance and to get healthy out of love. Check out her post for some tips on how to cultivate it into your everyday life.

Work It Wednesdays: How to Cultivate Self-Love in Your Every Day Life

How to Cultivate Self-Love in Your Every Day Life

 

I want to let you guys in on a little secret. One that no one really likes to talk about. One that is really hard for a lot of people to admit to. You ready for it?

We are all a little insecure. We all have something that makes us feel less than stellar. We all have at least one thing that makes us scrunch up our noses a bit. We all sometimes struggle with self-love.

Don’t you feel better now that it’s out there? Now let’s have an honest discussion about it.

Self-love is an awkward topic. Love yourself too much, you’re considered arrogant. Don’t love yourself enough, you’re considered depressed, negative, a downer. Guess what? Loving yourself and being a positive voice for yourself is healthy. It’s a huge part of leading a healthy lifestyle. I talk a lot about fitness and health, but no matter how much you workout and how many abs you have visible, if you don’t love yourself, its never going to be good enough.

We are our own worst critics. We see flaws in ourselves that no one else sees. We criticize fine lines that no one notices. Our one toe that’s a little longer than the others. That funny cowlick in our hair that makes it impossible to part it straight. Guess what? No one else notices those things!

The same principle can be used for fitness and overall health. We look in the mirror and see fat where others see strong. We see the flabby underarm (chicken wing as I like to call it) while others see strong rounded shoulders. We see thighs like tree trunks where others see muscle. We are always harder on ourselves than anyone else is. Some of the fittest people I know can still list off a list of their flaws easier than they can list off a list of things they like about their bodies. So don’t ever go into fitness thinking that once you reach a certain goal all of your self-love problems will be solved. Instead, go in with the thinking that you are amazing just the way you are, but you want to be a stronger, healthier, more fit version of yourself. Remember that fitness and health look different on everyone.

Its not easy. Embracing yourself as you are and loving yourself is never easy. But life is too short to be constantly criticizing yourself. Challenge yourself to focus on your strengths. If there is something that really bothers you, decide if you can change it. If you can’t change it, learn to embrace it. Learn to see what other people see when they look at you. No one is looking at your wrinkles or your flat butt. No one sees those gray hairs or that freckle on your nose that bothers you so much. They are looking at your smiling face. They see their friend that makes them laugh and is there for them, no matter what. Instead of cataloging your faults, try embracing them. Those laugh lines? Those babies are physical evidence of a full life! Those stretch marks? You earned those bad boys building a tiny human.

Don’t be afraid of being confident and happy with who you are. It tends to be contagious. Be that positive person who lifts others up, who encourages others to be kind to themselves. Be the most uplifting person in the room. Own it. Own who you are and what you’re made of, whether that be sugar and spice or nerves and anxiety. We all need to see what self-love and a positive mind set looks like.

We are all our own unique combination of flaws that make us our fantastic selves. There is nothing wrong with loving that.

 

From iFamily to Yours,

 

 

 

 

 


Your Family Fun Guide to Easter Activities Around Kansas City

Your Family Fun Guide to Easter Activities Around Kansas City

Your Family Fun Guide to Easter Activities Around
Kansas City

 

Easter Sunday is right around the corner on April 16th! There are tons of activities and events around the KC leading up to the Easter holiday! But don’t put all your eggs in one basket! Here are handful of super fun ideas your family is sure to enjoy!

 

Union Station Easter Eggstravaganza

Your Family Fun Guide to Easter Activities Around Kansas City

 

Science City April 14th at 10am. Price includes all day Science City admission

 

Zona Rosa Easter Parade

Your Family Fun Guide to Easter Activities Around Kansas City

 April 15th 11am-4pm

Powell Gardens Easter Eggs and the Breakfast Bunny

April 15th 8:45-noon

 

Summit Stables

Your Family Fun Guide to Easter Activities Around Kansas City

The Stables is having an Easter themed Kids Club event with iFamilyKC on April 8th that will include an egg hunt.

 

Midland Railway Easter Egg Hunt Express

Your Family Fun Guide to Easter Activities Around Kansas City

 April 8th, 9th and 15th. Easter Egg hunt, train ride, photos with the Easter Bunny. Look for the iFamilyKC discount code!

 

Ceramic Cafe 

Your Family Fun Guide to Easter Activities Around Kansas City

Easter Egg Festival March 31-April 2

 

Paradise Park

Ollie’s 10th annual Egg Hunt! April 8th and 15th

 

Independence Square Easter Egg Hunt and Shop Hop

April 15th 10am-6pm. Free Easter basket for the first 200 kids, candy, and an egg hunt.

 

Big Bunny Bash  

Your Family Fun Guide to Easter Activities Around Kansas City

Liberty Hospital April 8th 10-12pm

 

Country Club Plaza Bunnies on display! 

March 20th – April 23rd

Dexter’s Egg-cellent Easter Adventure

At the Legends T-REX cafe  April 15th 8-10am

 

And for all you dog moms and dads, here is a special event happening just for you and your pup:

 

Easter Dog Event

 At Rock & Brews April 9th 1pm-3pm Meet the Easter Bunny and each dog gets a 4×4 paw print tile from Paint Glaze & Fire Ceramics

 

From iFamily to Yours,


6 Simple Tips to Throwing a Successful Garage Sale This Spring

It may not feel like it, but spring is here! And with spring comes cleaning and organizing. Some of you may have some…piles of stuff that you’re unsure what to do with. Why not throw a garage sale? Our Mom Squad Ambassador, Sarah, has some great and simple tips to throwing a successful garage sale. Get out those signs, organize those piles, and get to pricing!

6 Simple Tips to Throwing a Successful Garage Sale This Spring

 

6 Simple Tips to Throwing a Successful Garage Sale This Spring

 

I am sure that all of you read my article last week, spent all day Saturday and Sunday organizing your house and now you have a pile of stuff that you just aren’t sure what to do with. No? Not yet? So let’s imagine that you have organized your home and carefully put things into the piles of keep, give away, or reuse/sell. All of these categories have an action to their name; but only one is going to make you some money! Been eyeing those darling shoes, maybe planning a Disney vacation (stay tuned on that one!) or maybe you just want some extra cash to help pay for the spring baseball league for your little Salvy. I know we all have a need to get a few extra dollars in our pockets, in that case let’s have a garage sale!
To begin, I hate garage sales. I hate going to them, I hate negotiating to get the best deal, I feel awkward walking around people’s garages! But some people are downright experts at them. My mother in law for instance is a pro. I gave her an “ask” last year; size 10 tap shoes because my oldest was starting tap in the fall. By the end of the day she had in her possession not one but two pairs of tap shoes, one in a 10 and another in a larger size. And this was just the beginning, she has a driver (aka my father in law) and she knows what the rest of the sale holds just by looking at the few things in the front. She is as close to expert level as you can get. So some of you out there are experts in going to garage sales but how are you in having garage sales? I am no expert either but I thought I could get close by doing a little research which I will share with you. So get your pile of stuff and price gun ready!

 

#1 Get a Tough Skin

First, get a tough skin! I get that this is your stuff that you worked long and hard for. That incredible collection of beanie babies that was once worth well over $400 has now been reduced to a few pennies and that makes us very upset. Get some tissues and put the 5 cents sticker on them because they are moving out! And that goes for the rest of your stuff too. Even though you paid $20 brand new does not mean that you will get $15 out of it, depending on the item you will probably get $5. Rule of thumb is 20 percent of what you paid for it.

#2 Plan your work and work your plan.

Make sure that you, your family and your home is safe. The house should be locked and by no means a stop for the restroom for anyone. Doors, gates, windows should be locked and blinds should be closed. Get a babysitter for the kids or organize a playdate for that day mainly because you don’t want to have to keep an eye on them around cars and the busier than normal street but also because chances are if you put a toy in the sale, even though they haven’t played with it (or even seen it) for 3 years, they are going to want it back! As for yourself, make sure that you have a cell phone or house phone nearby. Larger bills and money should be hidden; if you can bribe a friend or spouse with lunch and have them sit with you, all the better!
Clean out the garage for two reasons. First because you want to make sure that all items that you aren’t selling are out of eyesight to potential buyers and unfortunately thieves. If you can’t hide them, it’s best to put a tarp over them so there is no question. Second, you are going to need a place to lay out everything to make it easier on sale morning to just drag out and go.
Speaking of sale day…

#3 Plan your date just like you planned your wedding.

We can’t predict the weather but aim for a time when the weather tends to be drier and milder. Most people go with a Friday and Saturday morning but you could throw in a “moonlight madness” sale if you want to catch those after work and especially if the weather is threatening. Also like your wedding; it is important to let people know when it is. There are several online advertising avenues that will allow you to list for free; there is always the local paper and bulletin boards at the local grocery store. Extra credit if your town or neighborhood has their own designated garage sale date—load up on their free advertising! Timing depends on you, unlike your wedding, the earlier the better so people can go before work or before starting their normal Saturday, make sure it is convenient for you and count on one person there at least 30 minutes earlier! Once that is done that’s it—like it or not people will be at your house at 6AM on Friday to buy your stuff! You better have things to buy or a lot of doughnuts! And change—don’t forget this important thing, the first sale of the day will be a 10 cent item paid with by a $20 bill. Make sure that you have fives, ones, LOTS of quarters, dimes and nickels.

#4 Utilize tables as much as possible to get your stuff off the ground

Make tables if you have to out of saw horses and plywood. If you have to have things on the ground put something under them, like a sheet, blanket or tarp. If you didn’t store your belongings on the ground in your home; people aren’t going to want to buy them if you put them on the ground during the sale. The only thing that should be lower than table height (albeit still off the actual concrete) is kids toys. You want those right at eye level for those little munchkins to see, touch and buy!

 

#5 Make sure items are clean & all parts are in tact

Speaking of toys, this is going to be your draw along with baby furniture and baby clothes. All new parents say they want all new things for their baby (and they may spend the money on that first one) but chances are for a second or third kid they are looking to garage sales! Make sure your items are clean and all parts are on, near, or if they are missing make sure they are clearly marked; if it is something that doesn’t impact the use of the product most people aren’t going to care that much. For baby clothes; try and hang as many as possible, especially outfits and new clothes that may have the tags still on them. For anything that is damaged or stained, put this in a free bin. It could entice buyers and some of those clothes can be used for other things like doll clothes.

#6 Organize, organize, organize!

One site I read said to organize your items like you would see in a department store keeping like things together (kitchen, bath, etc.) Also organizing one area for men’s items is always great as well. If you are lucky enough to have your spouse help you then park them over there; it will help fill their time too! Make sure there is enough space to walk around and try not to hover over people as they shop but be available for questions or negotiations. As I was looking through my stuff in the “give” pile, I noticed that I was throwing it away because it was just a drawer without the dresser (don’t ask me how this happens) or a bedside table with no rhyme or reason. Instead of taking up room in my “I will find something on Pinterest to do with this later” file why not search on Pinterest now for something to do with it, print out the picture and tape it on the drawer; now someone could be “Pinspired”! I also laughed at my cousin for doing this at a garage sale we had many years ago but it worked for her every time! She had plenty of kids’ highchairs and strollers, she went online and printed out the product specs for the same or similar item along with any recalls associated with it and made sure it listed the price. Everyone who bought said it was because of this attention to detail and it showed them what an amazing deal they were getting!
Good luck my fellow garage sellers! I will report back my learning’s after mine scheduled for May!

 

From iFamily to Yours,

 

 

 

 

 

 


Join In On The FUN: Enter To Win Our Flash Giveaway For SMURFS Advanced Screening Passes!

Good Evening, Kansas City!

We are so excited to bring you inspiring content, fun recipes, and exciting information from our iFamilyKC team of Mom Squad Ambassadors right here on the blog each and every week. This week, we wanted to do something EXTRA FUN and host a FLASH GIVEAWAY where you can enter to win for your chance to see the brand new SMURFS movie, “Smurfs: The Lost Village”, BEFORE it hits theaters nationwide. Getting in on the action is EASY. Simply drop us a COMMENT on THIS blog post and tell us what kinds of posts you like to see on the blog and we’ll enter your name in for the giveaway!

Smurfs Lost Village giveaway

Winners will be randomly drawn AND notified by email THIS Thursday morning! Good luck! 

From iFamily to Yours,

Your iFamilyKC Team

 

emailsignupforblog3


This Weekend at the Box Office: Power Rangers

Happy Weekend, Kansas City! Many of us are pumped about the upcoming Power Rangers film, out this weekend. For a lot of us, it brings back some fond, nostalgia from our childhoods. Well, our Mom Squad Ambassador, Brigette, had the chance to check it out, and she gives us the highs and lows below. Check it out!

This Weekend at the Box Office: Power Rangers

Rating: PG-13
Run Time: 2 hr 4 min
Director: Dean Israelite
Starring: Dacre Montgomery, Naomi Scott, RJ Cyler

This Weekend at the Box Office: Power Rangers

 

Words cannot explain how long I have waited for this movie to come out! Growing up I loved the Power Rangers so you can only imagine how excited I was when I heard they were making a more “adult version” of the group.
Well, let me tell you this, I WAS NOT DISAPPOINTED! This movie lived up to everything I had hoped it would be. Action, comedy, and villains that couldn’t stand a chance against the Power Rangers.
If you didn’t really care for them growing up then you may not be as into it as someone that had only hoped to be the good Green Ranger Tommy or Trini, the Yellow Ranger!
The movie starts off in a world far before our time, with a battle that will then resume in the present day in the small town of Angel Grove. There, 5 strangers will later become the ultimate fighting group of teens.
Visually, this movie was spectacular, there were scenes so beautifully directed, I couldn’t believe what I was watching! The emotions of the characters were so natural, you couldn’t help but feel like you were right along with them on this journey. It really made me (and the rest of the theater) feel some kind of nostalgic feelings! Especially when you hear that oh so loved chant, GO GO POWER RANGERS! Not to mention the incredible Elizabeth Banks and how she transformed Rita Repulsa from some silly witch puppeteer to this all out devil in the flesh villain!
AHHHH I’m getting excited all over again!
However, because this version is “more adult” than the show or really any family movies out, I would not recommend taking younger kids. I would say it would be ok for your older ones like 15 and up. There is quite a bit of cussing, teen drinking and they tip toe around sex. I mean they are teens after all! If you are wanting to take your kids to see it, I would say see it first and then decide if you think it is ok. Trust me you will want to see it again lol
Overall I give this movie a 10/10 for so many reasons! Mostly because this is my childhood on the big screen and it is entertaining at my current age! This movie is a must see!

 

From iFamily to Yours,

 

 

 

 

 

 


3 Simple Questions to Help Get You Organized this Weekend!

Happy Spring, Kansas City! As temperatures are still attempting to figure out if it’s winter or spring, a lot of us are gearing up for spring cleaning. Our Mom Squad Ambassador, Sarah, has some great tips to inspire you to declutter, get organized, and simplify your life. Take a look…

3 Simple Questions to Help Get You Organized this Weekend!

3 Simple Questions to Help Get You Organized this Weekend!

 

I get absolutely giddy about organization! But I hate to do it. I would rather listen to the Frozen and Trolls soundtrack on loop for the rest of my life than have to organize the toy box. And yes, I know what you are going to say; isn’t it time to have those kids do it? Probably, but I am still too controlling to let them do it but I am trying to get better! But what does make me absolutely giddy is the last moment when everything is in its place and it is almost like the world seems a little happier because of it! In researching for this article, I visited several websites and all had their little tips and tricks to get organized and stay organized. Most of these websites showed pictures of before and after shots—they didn’t lie they looked amazing; the problem was I didn’t see what was so wrong with the before shot! This made me realize that I need to take a little trip around my house and get to sorting!

A good rule of thumb to begin with is asking yourself three questions—Have I used this in the past year? Will I use this in the coming year? And is there a better spot where this could be used? (That last question I threw in, I will explain later.)

Have I Used This in the Past Year?

First of all, “Have I used this in the past year?” This primarily works well for clothes, shoes and purses or bags. If you haven’t worn it and can’t see yourself wearing it then by all means throw it out; or donate it and get a little break on taxes. I know that most of my clothes are work wear, so instead of donating them to Goodwill please look into donating those straight to an organization which helps get women back in the workforce, fortunately (and unfortunately) there are so many throughout Kansas City.

Will I Use This in the Coming Year?

When asking “Will I use this in the coming year?” go back to the closet and look at the pile of clothes that you want to get rid of; are they out of style or truly will never fit again? Then go ahead and donate them. But if they are in style but may just be too small or too large take a look and see where else you may use them. Think: pants that are too short for long pants but with a little hemming would look so cute as a pair of cropped pants. Or a shirt that maybe is missing a button that was never fixed or if you were to cut off the sleeves and just use the collar; next winter would be perfect addition to dress up that sweater or cardigan without adding bulk! I realize the goal here is to de-clutter, but sometimes putting things to use in other ways will help in the long run.

Is There a Better Spot Where This Could be Used?

Finally, “Is there a better spot where this could be used?” Again I realize the point is to purge those things we don’t use; but I don’t know how many times I have hosted a party and used things from around my house to decorate. Most of “my room” in the unfinished storage area of the basement is shelves of (organized) bins with items that may be nice to have for parties in the future. It drives my husband nuts, but when it comes down to it I save a ton by reusing. Using this same logic for the rest of the house, for instance, that large bowl that just hangs out in the cabinet with no lid and no real use; now it could hold all those extra lids so they aren’t flying around the cabinet.

Other Tidbits of Advice

So now that we have de-cluttered the house. Take a walk through and see where we can “store like with like” and “organize in zones”. Shelves are a good start for this; every shelf should have liked items matched together where they make sense and if they don’t it’s okay not to put it there! Think clean.

Another great place—the toy area! I have read so many times to avoid having toys in the living room– keep them in a toy room or in bedrooms. I get it but let’s be reasonable, the toys in my house obviously are alive and keep walking from the playroom to all corners of my house. I can’t explain it but I can remedy it.

Don’t put storage bins in places where you want to keep toys away from. You may think you are helping the cluttering problem but in fact you are adding to it by inviting more.

Typical Problem Areas

And finally the kitchen! Another great place for clutter! Let’s start with the fridge—always a place for magnets and pictures and reminders and so on and so on. Take all of that stuff down; put an info center on the back of a pantry or cabinet door. Display the kids’ artwork but be mindful of it; display it in a picture frame that you can change out from time to time. Or make a clipboard that can hold all those priceless works of art, after a little while graduate those to a storage bin for each child’s memories or (and I hate to break this to you) your child is not a Van Gogh—in fact if Van Gogh’s mother had to de-clutter I guarantee that she would have thrown some of his “priceless” works out as well.

I could go on and on about this topic as so many have done before me; but I won’t bore you with details. I don’t claim to be the expert nor does my house look perfect at any given time. But I do get on kicks where I do try and organize things better, kind of a “yearly review” of how the house is working and how it isn’t. Plus I am already listening to the Frozen and Trolls soundtrack on loop so organizing the toy box now and then won’t break me!

Stay tuned for next week when I give you some tips about hosting the perfect garage sale! Great timing with all that stuff you are bound to collect!

From iFamily to Yours,

 

 

 

 

 


Kona Ice & Schools Go Together Like Peanut Butter & Jelly!

With the end of the school year looming in front of us, it’s time to think of fundraising, special events, and wrap-up parties. Kona Ice is a GREAT option for all of the above. We’ve even included a deal on a truck for your next event. Check it out!

Kona Ice & Schools Go Together  Like Peanut Butter & Jelly!

 

Kona Ice & Schools Go Together

Like Peanut Butter & Jelly!

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This Weekend at the Box Office: Beauty and the Beast

Happy Sunday, Kansas City! Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that Disney’s newest live action film Beauty and the Beast is now out in theaters. Our Mom Squad Ambassador, Darcy, got a peek at the film and has a great review of what to expect. Take a look!

This Weekend at the Box Office: Beauty and the Beast

 

This Weekend at the Box Office: Beauty and the Beast

 

You all know how excited I was to see the new Beauty and the Beast movie. My kids and I had planned an entire day, we had our manicures done, our outfits picked out and then my kids decided they did not want to see the movie. “It’s going to be too scary,” they told me. We had watched every preview, many of which showed the beast growling, or falling, and wolf attacks and torch toting villagers. My kids didn’t bat an eye. However, as more adults asked them if they’d be afraid, they decided they probably would be and bowed out. I was disappointed, but ultimately it ended up being for the best.

I ended up enlisting a couple friends and we went to see the new Disney movie Beauty and the Beast starring Emma Watson. First thing to note: there were some pretty intense scenes. Many parents shuffled little ones out during a particularly scary scene involving wolves and I thought to myself, that would have been me leaving with my four-year-old. Later in the movie, there is another dark scene (I don’t want to give anything away), and I know my six-year-old would be wanting to leave as well. So, this new version of Beauty and the Beast- it is definitely for adults and older kids. It is rated PG, and I’m thinking it’s probably best for kids age 10 and up.

Now on to the fun stuff! Beauty and the Beast fans will NOT be disappointed. It has everything you loved about the old cartoon version and MORE. All your favorite songs are in the movie- plus a couple more. The characters are all included and endearing, but are given more backstory and portrayed a bit deeper. Gaston (Luke Evans) and LeFou (Josh Gad) I think were particularly entertaining. They balanced each other nicely and did an incredible job portraying some of the films silliest characters. The story follows true to the original movie, but again, you get more. I enjoyed that, but I also thought at times they put in things that were unnecessary.

One thing I liked about the film, although one of my friend’s disagreed, was this version of Belle. She’s the only literate female in her village. She wants to teach children to read, she invents things, she’s clever and independent and truly the hero of the movie. Belle does not wait around for Gaston, her dad, the Beast, or anyone to help. In fact, she often feels that it’s her job to rescue everyone else. Whereas in the cartoon movie Belle swaps positions as prisoner with her dad because he’s sick, in this movie she does it because she’s sure she can escape. I liked Emma Watson’s Belle, not only because I love to see strong female characters, but because it added a connection between her and the Beast. They both are very lonely outsiders. People don’t understand them, nor do they try to.

The screening of this movie was 3D, and I want to go see the film without 3D. It practically ruined it for me. I don’t know if it was the theater, but even with the glasses, a lot of the movie was dark (in terms of brightness) and blurry. Some moments with the 3D were neat, but most of the time I was frustrated that I couldn’t take in all of the scenery because it was blurry. It was incredibly distracting. That being said- when I could see the backgrounds, they were gorgeous. The castle was amazing and it’s unreal some of the effects. (Cogsworth gets a stunning makeover).

I guess I’d give this movie 3 out of 5 stars. Although it is incredible, it was overly ambitious and fell short for me. I’d rather have a movie I could’ve taken my kids to. There were some technical issues (the 3D, Belle not looking in the proper spot during scenes), but it did have enough magic to help me remember why I loved the old cartoon movie as a kid so much.

 

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