The little book with BIG resources!

Beat The Summer Slide: A How To Guide

Avoiding the summer slide can be difficult, especially when your children are eager to get out and enjoy pool time, run around with friends, and get away for that much needed family vacation. Make sure that your child doesn’t fall behind before the new school year starts with these six simple (and fun) ideas from Erin. Take a look…

beat the summer slide with six steps

 Beat The Summer Slide: A How To Guide

School is out for the summer!  My kids and I are embracing summertime full force with picnics, parks, pool time, and nature walks. We are loving summer and I know the “official start” to summer may be up for debate but it has definitely started in our house!  I definitely plan on sharing some super fun summer activities and boredom busters later on this season! However, I thought it was important to share with you some tips on beating the summer slide, where knowledge and skills are lost over the course of summer.  I read a statistic recently that said when kids go back to school in the fall that teachers will spend around six weeks re-teaching old material to make up for lost time.  My kids’ education is so important to me, so hearing that stat made me think about some ways to beat that summer slide and keep the kids learning and on track for the next school year.  Take a look at some ideas here and feel free to add your own ideas below in the comments.

#1 Read

Read 20 minutes a day. Read aloud. Have your child read to you. Listen to audio books. Lead by example and encourage your kids to read by enjoying a book yourself. Let your child pick out a book based on their own interests.  Read outside on sunny days or build a fort on rainy days and read inside the fort. Make it fun and engaging!

#2 Visit The Local Library

The MCPL branches have a fantastic summer learning program going on now until July 31st for ages birth to 19 years!  Kids can earn points by reading, doing small various activities at home and attending programs throughout the summer. Book prizes are awarded with each completed level and drawings are taking place throughout the summer for tickets to the Royals, Legoland, Powell Gardens, Coco Key, and much much more! Check it out and sign up online.

#3 Sharpen Math Skills

There are some awesome math apps out there like Reflex, which uses fun games to practice math skills.  You can also create good ole fashioned flash cards for addition and subtraction, multiplication and division facts.  Workbooks and activity books can be fun for road trips or for the daily commute. I’ve found some great flashcards and workbooks at Dollar Tree and Five Below.

#4 Take Field Trips

KC has SO many things to do for kids! Make it fun and educational by visiting fun places: Union Station and Science City, Money Museum, SEALIFE, KC Zoo, Harry S. Truman museum, Burr Oak Woods, National WWI Museum and the list goes on and on.

Pro Tip: Check out FieldTripGuideKC.com for inspiration on enriching activities for your kids! 

#5 Learn Around The House

Use everyday tasks you can encourage your kids to learn different things.  Take the kids grocery store and give them a chance to practice math skills, cook together, do fun science experiments with everyday household items, measure things inside and outside the house, chart the weather highs and lows and different weather patterns.

#6 Play Board Games

Uno, Monopoly, Bananagrams, Battleship, Memory, Hi Ho Cherry-O, Checkers and Chess, Dominoes are all great games to boost brain power!

By providing opportunities for your kiddos to keep learning throughout the summer months, you will give them an excellent head start to school in the fall and have some fun in the meantime!  And the teachers will thank you for it too!

From iFamily to Yours,

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22 Simple Summer Snack Ideas Your Kids Will Love!

Happy Tuesday, Kansas City!

Summer break is in full swing here in the metro area and,  if you’re like me, you’re already dealing with the constant battle of feeding (always) hungry kids at home and on he go. Brigette, from our iFamilyKC Mom Squad team, is here to help. She’s come up with a list of 22 simple summer snack ideas your kids will love this season. Whether you’re heading off to camp, venturing out to the park, or relaxing at home – we’ve got you covered right here on the blog. Take a look…

22 Simple Summer Snack Ideas

22 Simple Summer Snack Ideas Your Kids Will Love!

The kids are out of school and, unless they are in summer camp, chances are they are like mine…and will be snacking! Kids seems to want more snacks than anything else, especially on days when they are very active and hitting those growth spurts.

Snacking during summer can be tricky at times, especially if you’re not prepared. It always seems to be easier to just stop somewhere to grab some fruit snacks or another sugary “snack”- And we all know what happens when they get that sugar overload! There are kids bouncing all over the place, attitudes change, and, of course, they are not receiving any nutritional value. Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with what I like to call “fun snacks” (such as fruit snacks or the occasional sour patch kids) every once in a while. Of course, only you know what is best for your child.

But if snacking is something that just seems to be hassle getting together of too time consuming, here is a list 22 of my favorite go to snacks! Especially during the upcoming summer time heat!

Fresh Fruits

1. Apples

2. Mandarins/ Cuties

3. Bananas

4. Grapes

5. Berries

6. Pears

These are some of the best fruits to pack! They don’t need to be kept cool and you can throw a few in your snack back or purse! Plus they don’t have much waste (wrappers, bottles) o you don’t have to worry about a huge mess. For those really hot days, I freeze our grapes and let the kiddos eat them on the road. They taste like grape popsicles! If you have a smaller kiddo and need to cut the apples beforehand, soak them in a little lemon juice water to prevent the browning.

Veggies

7. Carrots

8. Celery

9. Cherry tomatoes

10. Edamame

11. Broccoli

These veggies are also great to just grab and go! A little wash off when you get home, chop them if not already in “baby form” i.e. baby carrots and you are set! My littlest loves tomatoes so these always get packed!

Grains &  Nuts

12. Granola Bars

13. Energy Cookies

14. Almonds

15. Trail Mix

16. Gold Fish

17. Dry Cereal

These are items we keep in our home all the time! Our oldest doesn’t like granola and the boy doesn’t like almonds so we get the Ziploc snack size baggies and fill them with a variety of these snacks. This way they can choose their own, not overdo it and still be a happy camper. Our energy bites are the only thing that really takes time to prep. For our kids we use about 2-3 mashed ripe bananas, about 1 cup and a half oatmeal and a few table spoons of chocolate chips. I mix them all together and bake for until they are firm. My kids love these especially with ice cold milk!

Drinks

18. Water

19. Fruit Water

20. Lemonade

21. V8 Juice

22. Juice Box

These should be every parents go to drink arsenal! One thing that my kids love to do is freeze their drinks (I guess they get their love of ice from me!). They will freeze their cups of whatever and when they are ready for some, they grab a spoon and dig in! I also fill their water bottles half way and freeze them. When we are ready to go out in the heat, I fill the rest with water and they have instant ice water that will last much longer than a few cubes.

I hope these easy snack ideas will make your kiddos summer snacking a lot easier! Let us know what simple snack ideas YOU have to help other moms on the go!

From iFamily to Yours,

Brigette

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Get Your Tickets for PJ Masks Live! Time to be a Hero at the Midland Theater

Get Your Tickets for PJ Masks Live! Time to be a Hero at the Midland Theater

SHOWTIME:
Thur, Nov 9, 2017. 6 PM.

Doors open at  5 PM.

ON SALE:
Fri, May 19, 2017 10 AM.
TICKET PRICES*:
$29.50 – $49.50
Purchase at The Midland Box Office, online at AXS.com
or by phone at 888-929-7849.
Get Your Tickets for PJ Masks Live! Time to be a Hero at the Midland Theater
New Live-Action Adventure Brings
Entertainment One’s Hit Animated TV Series to Life
– on Stage –
at Arvest Bank Theatre at The Midland
NOVEMBER 9, 2017
The live show is based on eOne’s top-rated animated TV series, which airs daily on Disney Junior.
Catboy, Owlette, Gekko, and the Baddies will delight fans of all ages with live performances featuring world-class production, familiar and original music, acrobatics, and immersive interactivity.
​​​​​​​
PJ Masks, the hit series, follows the thrilling nighttime adventures of three young friends who transform into their dynamic alter egos, Catboy, Owlette and Gekko, when they put on their pajamas at night and activate their animal amulets. Together, they embark on action-packed capers, solving mysteries and learning valuable lessons along the way.

Check Out These Memorial Day Events at the National World War I Museum

Hello, Kansas City! Can you believe that Memorial Day is already upon us? Here in Kansas City we are so lucky to have the National World War I Museum and they have a ton of great events (good for families!) this upcoming weekend. There’s something for everyone, so definitely check it out!

Check Out These Memorial Day Events at the National World War I Museum

 

Check Out These Memorial Day Events at the National World War I Museum

 

As the commemoration of the Centennial of World War I (2014-19) continues, the National World War I Museum and Memorial serves as a fitting place to honor and recognize the men and women who sacrificed their lives while serving their country during Memorial Day weekend. Additionally, the Museum invites the public to “find your World War I connection” and discover how the Great War affected your family through records, photographs and more with a variety of programs throughout the weekend.

Admission to the Museum is free for veterans and active duty military personnel, while admission for the general public is half-price all weekend (Friday-Monday, May 26-29). The Museum offers several events during the course of the weekend for people of all ages and interests, including a free public ceremony at 10 a.m. on Memorial Day featuring renowned photographer Michael St Maur Sheil. St Maur Sheil’s exhibitions of contemporary photographs of World War I battlefields have been seen by millions of people across the world and are currently featured in the exhibition Fields of Battle, Lands of Peace: The Doughboys 1917-1918 at the Museum.

 

Free admission for veterans and active duty military personnel is made possible by U.S. Bank. Half-price admission on Friday is courtesy of Sports Radio 810 WHB. Additional support for Memorial Day Weekend activities was provided by Armed Forces Insurance and the Neighborhood Tourist Development Fund of Kansas City, Mo.

 

WORLD WAR I RESEARCH STATIONS

When: All Day, Friday-Sunday, May 26-29

Where: Outside J.C. Nichols Auditorium Lobby

What: Find your connection to World War I during Memorial Day weekend through research stations at the Museum. With access to multiple databases including, Fold3.com, Ancestry.com, the Museum’s online collections database, the American Battlefield Monuments Commission and the National Archives, discover how the Great War affected your family through records, photographs and much more. FREE to the public.

 

VIETNAM ERA BELL UH-1 IROQUOIS “HUEY” HELICOPTER DISPLAY

When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Friday, May 27 – Monday, May 29

Where: Rectangular Drive at the National World War I Museum and Memorial

What: The Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter #243 will provide an iconic Bell UH-1 Iroquois “Huey” helicopter for display. FREE to the public.

 

 

VINTAGE MILITARY VEHICLE DISPLAY

When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday, May 27

Where: Southeast Lawn outside the National World War I Museum and Memorial

What: The Military Vehicle Preservation Association (MVPA) will display nearly 20 vintage military vehicles from World War II, Korean War and Operation Desert Storm. MVPA members will be available to answer questions about their collection. Availability subject to weather. FREE to the public.

 

 

FIELDS OF BATTLE, LANDS OF PEACE TOURS

When: 10:30 a.m. & 3:30 p.m., Saturday-Sunday, May 27-28; 3:30 p.m. Monday, May 29

Where: Tours begin at Guest Services inside the National World War I Museum and Memorial

What: Join award-winning photojournalist and curator Michael St Maur Sheil on a brief walking tour of the special centennial outdoor exhibition Fields of Battle, Lands of Peace: The Doughboys 1917-1918. Hear the stories behind the incredible contemporary photographs. Book purchase suggested and reservation required. Limited space available. FREE to the public.

 

 

2017 BATTLEFIELD TOUR: THE TRIP OF A LIFETIME

When: Noon, Saturday, May 27

Where: R.A. Long Education Center

What: What’s it like to experience the battlefields of World War I in person? Find out details of the upcoming commemorative journey to breathtaking places in Europe with the National World War I Museum and Memorial and Battlefield Tour guide/photojournalist Michael St Maur Sheil. Museum staff will be on hand to answer questions. FREE with RSVP.

 

 

HANDS-ON HISTORY

When: 2 p.m., Saturday, May 27

Where: Near Paul Sunderland Glass Bridge inside the National World War I Museum and Memorial

What: History is brought to life during this family-friendly program, where kids of all ages are invited to handle Great War artifacts.

 

 

35TH INFANTRY DIVISION BAND CONCERT

When: 2 p.m., Saturday, May 27

Where: J.C. Nichols Auditorium inside the National World War I Museum and Memorial

What: The Museum proudly welcomes the 35th Infantry Division Band for a rousing concert to commemorate those who have served and perished in our country’s armed forces. Comprised of professional musicians, educators, and college students, the 35th ID Band performs for more than 100,000 citizens annually, sharing the Army’s story with the public through music. FREE to the public.

 

 

BANK OF AMERICA CELEBRATION AT THE STATION

When: 3 p.m., Sunday, May 28 (concert begins at 8 p.m.)

Where: North Lawn outside the National World War I Museum and Memorial

What: Kick off your summer with the largest free Memorial Day weekend event in the Midwest. The Kansas City Symphony, led by Music Director Michael Stern, performs patriotic favorites against the backdrop of Kansas City’s historic Union Station. Celebration at the Station concludes with a fireworks display over the Liberty Memorial at the National World War I Museum and Memorial. FREE to the public.

 

 

FINDING YOUR WWI CONNECTION

When: 2 p.m., Sunday, May 28

Where: J.C. Nichols Auditorium inside the National World War I Museum and Memorial

What: Many Americans had family members who served overseas during the Great War. Others had family members who were German or Austrian immigrants affected by U.S. immigration policies during wartime. In this introductory session to WWI research, Dr. Mitch Yockelson will offer some hints and tips on how to go about researching relatives that may have served or been affected during the war. Information on how to request copies of military service files via the National Archives will also be available. Presented in partnership with The National Archives at Kansas City. FREE with RSVP.

 

NATIONAL  WWI MUSEUM AND MEMORIAL BENEFIT PANCAKE BREAKFAST

When: 9-11 a.m., Monday, May 29

Where: Over There Café, inside the National World War I Museum and Memorial

What: Enjoy some flapjacks (with hashbrowns and sausage/bacon) in a unique setting during a pancake feed with proceeds benefiting the National World War I Museum and Memorial. The meals are $9 for adults and $5 for children (12 and under) and include a beverage.

 

MEMORIAL DAY CEREMONY

When: 10-11 a.m., Monday, May 29

Where: Memorial Courtyard outside the National World War I Museum and Memorial

What: A formal public program to include remarks from dignitaries, including U.S. Missouri Fifth District Representative Emanuel Cleaver, II, Kansas City and Missouri Mayor Sylvester “Sly” James (a former U.S. Marine), a keynote address Michael St Maur Sheil, musical performances from the Heartland Men’s Chorus and the 1st Infantry Division Wood Wind Quintet and an Honor Guard presentation from Ft. Leavenworth. FREE to the public.

 

 

WALK OF HONOR DEDICATION CEREMONY

When: 2 p.m., Monday, May 29

Where: J.C. Nichols Auditorium inside the National World War I Museum and Memorial

What: More than 100 new Walk of Honor granite bricks will be dedicated during a special ceremony. Entertainment includes a performance from the Heartland Men’s Chorus, remarks from archivist, military historian and author Dr. Mitch Yockelson and an Honor Guard presentation from Ft. Leavenworth. The Walk of Honor, now more than 10,000 bricks strong, is divided into three sections: bricks dedicated solely to those who served in World War I; bricks dedicated to veterans of any military service; and bricks that honor civilian friends, family or organizations. Walk of Honor bricks are dedicated twice each year during Memorial Day and Veterans Day ceremonies. FREE to the public.

 

 

MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND HOURS AND PARKING

The National World War I Museum and Memorial will be open from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Friday-Sunday and from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. on Monday. To accommodate expected high Memorial Day weekend attendance, a parking shuttle service will be available Saturday, May 27 and Sunday, May 28 from 9:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. from the West Yards Garage at Union Station and on Monday, May 29 from 8:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.

 

About the National World War I Museum and Memorial

The National World War I Museum and Memorial is America’s leading institution dedicated to remembering, interpreting and understanding the Great War and its enduring impact on the global community. The Museum holds the most diverse collection of World War I objects and documents in the world and is the second-oldest public museum dedicated to preserving the objects, history and experiences of the war. The Museum takes visitors of all ages on an epic journey through a transformative period and shares deeply personal stories of courage, honor, patriotism and sacrifice. Designated by Congress as America’s official World War I Museum and Memorial and located in downtown Kansas City, Mo., the National World War I Museum and Memorial inspires thought, dialogue and learning to make the experiences of the Great War era meaningful and relevant for present and future generations. To learn more, visit theworldwar.org.


This Weekend at the Movies: Baywatch

Hello Kansas City! Dwayne Johnson is back at it, bringing a new spin on an old franchise – Baywatch. Our Mom Squad Ambassador, Sarah, had a chance to get a sneak peek in, and gives us some thoughts below. Take a look!

 

Rating: R
Run time: 1 hr 56 min
Director: Seth Gordon
Starring: Dwayne Johnson, Zac Effron, Alexandra Daddario

 

This Weekend at the Movies: Baywatch

 

Imagine if The Fast and the Furious and The A-Team had a baby, shipped it off to the beaches of California and told it to fight crime. This is basically Baywatch. To begin, I don’t think I have ever seen an episode of the original Baywatch on TV except for the references on Friends, but I got the gist of what I needed to know about the show—girls in swimsuits running in slow motion down the beach and fighting crime because the cops didn’t really want to be involved in petty beach theft and drowning victims. A muscled up head lifeguard which led these individuals on wild jet ski and boat excursions to make sure their beach was free of all things from litter to drug dealers. Pretty much the Baywatch movie in a nutshell as well; little more high price action sequences, little more high price talent, a lot more quick one-liners and F-words.

Dwayne Johnson takes on the role as Mitch Buchannon (David Hasselhoff in the original) a devoted lifeguard with the rank of lieutenant (which I am not too sure why he has this title) who leads a group of lifeguards on the Emerald Bay beach. With try-outs coming up to fill three empty positions in the Baywatch group, a cocky Olympic gold medalist, Matt Brody, played by Zac Efron begins to butt heads and start a long an drawn out competition with Buchannon. But they find themselves in the midst of an all-out conspiracy involving drugs, real estate and a mysterious new owner of the Huntley Club, a ritzy location on the beach. Baywatch is rated R for language throughout the movie, crude sexual content and nudity.

To be honest I was surprised; I half expected to walk out of the movie halfway through thinking if I have to sit there and body shame myself because all I am looking at are girls in less than bikinis running down the beach– I have other things to do. My neighbors in the seats around me didn’t help this assumption; their ages ranged from about 17 to 24 year old boys who thank goodness stopped cat-calling the women about 10 minutes into the movie. Ladies, they put in Dwayne Johnson and Zac Efron in for us I suppose which helped even out the dynamic—but man! How many muscles does one person need; I am not complaining but man!

I ended up liking each character, Dwayne Johnson I have always liked and think he delivers lines (especially comedic ones) very well. I like Zac Efron as well in pretty much anything he does; looking forward for him to take on a more serious role in the future which I think he will do fantastic; but he plays the not-the-sharpest-crayon-in-the-box jock just fine as well. The girl–, CJ, Stephanie, and Summer took supporting cast roles which I think is what made me stick around to the credits since it wasn’t just about running in slow motion; it was more about the storyline. I will say they were typical to the role they were cast and a few times I found myself asking “where the heck are they!?” There were a couple digressions in the storyline that I really don’t know if they needed to be in there, but when I saw my 17 year old friends around me laughing hysterically then I knew it had to have a couple crude humor moments.

Do I recommend? If you want a movie where you don’t have to think, you can just wind down and imagine your future beach trip then yes. Would I go see it again? No. Would I rent it? Probably not. But if it were on the movie channel for free? Yeah I may watch it and laugh a couple times. Honestly the best part of the whole thing was the relaxing reclining chairs and the 3 story movie screen—oh yeah and popcorn for dinner!

From iFamily to Yours,

 

 

 

 

 


8 Reasons Why Gym Friends are the Best of Friends for Mamas

Happy Wednesday, Kansas City! We’re back at it with another Work It Wednesday from our Mom Squad Ambassador, Connie. This week she’s giving us the inside look in why gym friends are the best friends to have. So, get ready to get active and find your tribe. Take a look!

8 Reasons Why Gym Friends are the Best of Friends for Mamas

 

8 Reasons Why Gym Friends are the
Best of Friends for Mamas

 

Alright guys, if you’ve been reading my posts, you already know that I spend lots of time in the gym.  And sometimes lots of time in the gym can mean being away from friends and family.  But I am lucky enough to have made some incredible friends at the gym, and they not only make my workouts worth it, but they have become a huge part of my life.  I am not sure where I would be without them.  Here are some reasons why they are the best.

#1 They see you at your worst—and they love you anyway.

I mean, seriously, who looks good at the gym?  Who looks good sweating it out and pushing themselves until their arms shake and they can’t do anymore reps?  Well, I guess some people do.  I am definitely not one of them.  I sweat like a pig, I have a terrible lifting face, and while I love workout clothes, they’re not what I wear when I am dressing to impress.  And yet these amazing people still talk to me.

#2 They support you, even when you don’t want them to.

I can’t begin to tell you how many of my gym friends have offered support, not just during a tough class, or when I was training for half marathons, but in real life situations.  I had thyroid surgery and they were all checking on me.  I was struggling with some stressors and they offered to help.  I didn’t want to go run one day and they dragged me out there and reminded me that we always run on Mondays.  I didn’t want them to support me at that moment, but I am so glad they did.

 

#3 They make you want to come to the gym.

Not feeling your workout today, but dying to chat with your friend about what happened on Dancing with the Stars last night?  Better get your butt to the gym and talk about it.  They’ll be glad to see you.

 

#4 They push you to do better.

I used to be a stuck in a rut, boring workout person.  I went to the gym daily, did 40 minutes on the elliptical machine and then went home.  Until one fateful Saturday when my now dear friend Larry approached me and said, in his amazing, unfiltered way “aren’t you ever going to do anything else?”  Then he walked me through 3 other cardio machines that morning.  I woke up so sore the next day and completely in love with my new routine.  Then he started challenging me to come try some classes.  I was hooked.  So in a sense, I owe a lot of my fitness passion to him.

 

#5 They keep you sane.

My gym time is my calm time, my sane time.  These people are my friends and we vent and we destress and we take out our frustrations on some weights.  We shake away our stress in a Zumba class.  We laugh until we cry when one of us makes a clutsy move during class.

 

#6 We aren’t just gym friends.

These amazing people have become part of my life.  We talk outside of the gym.  We have girls nights and playdates and park time and we are a part of each other’s every day.  I am so blessed to have these people and know that they have my back.

 

#7 They become the voices inside your head.

When I am out running by myself and I want to quit, I can hear them in my head telling me that I can’t give up yet.  When I hear one of our favorite workout songs on the radio I hear them all singing along.  When I think about skipping a class or not going because it looks too challenging, I hear them telling me to suck it up and just go.

 

#8 They just get it.

There is something about pushing through a tough class with a room full of people that bonds you, whether you like it or not.  There’s a comradery that comes from working out together.  You can look at each other in the middle of a particularly tough class and just know that they get it.  The struggle is real.  And you’re not alone in it.

8 Reasons Why Gym Friends are the Best of Friends for Mamas

 

Now these people aren’t just limited to people I take classes with.  I have friends from the gym who don’t take classes.  Who I started chatting with because they lift at the same time I do on weekday mornings.  People who I stopped to ask questions when I was first starting, or who asked me some when they were new.  Somehow seeing someone every day and not at least saying hello seems strange to me.

I have a fantastic group of gym friends that I wouldn’t trade for the world.  They have become some of my best friends and the people I talk to the most.  They are my tribe.   I just hope they all know how much I appreciate them.

From iFamily to Yours,

 

 

 

 


10 Super Fun Staycation Ideas For Kansas City This Summer

Howdy Kansas City! The school year is probably wrapping up for many of the kiddos, it’s time to start looking for some fun activities for the family. Summer doesn’t have to mean expensive vacations and extended amounts of traveling. Our Mom Squad Ambassador, Brigette, has some great ideas for for a staycation here in the Kansas City metro. Check it out!

10 Super Fun Staycation Ideas For Kansas City This Summer

 

10 Super Fun Staycation Ideas For
Kansas City This Summer

 

Can y’all believe it will be summer soon!? No school, stores are open late and one of the best things ever created… VACATION! Who doesn’t love that?! We rarely take a summer vacation in our house because we take a long one in the Fall (10 days, so worth it!). So we try our best to do our very own family staycation! If you are unfamiliar with a staycation, it is basically vacationing at home but you do special things you wouldn’t normally do during the year.

There are so many fun things you can do during a staycation. Kansas City is a very family friendly city and there is always something for everyone to enjoy. So, get out your planner, pens, highlighters or whatever you use and start planning your family staycation.

 

1. Amusement parks

Take a day and visit one of Kansas City’s parks! Check out Worlds of Fun for exciting rides and games, Oceans of Fun, Schlitterbahn and Paradise Park are a few!

2. Museums

Kansas City is rich in history and art. Plan a day or week to venture off to see various museums for all ages and interests. There is the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art, Negro League Museum, Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, National WWI Museum and MORE!

3. Downtown Restaurants

Living Downtown gives you an advantage when it comes to exploring. Everywhere you go you are seeing something new. The are so many amazing restaurants downtown, I know everyone will be happy! Start with a family favorite like Chipotle or Jason’s Deli. Fritz’s or Crayola Cafe at Crown Center. Or you could venture a little further south towards the Plaza for Seasons 52 or Fogo de Chao!

4. Exhibits

Exhibits are always fun because they are only around for a limited time. This really makes you feel like you are on vacation lol. Union Station has different exhibits throughout the year. Currently they have a Pompeii exhibit (ending soon) but starting June 23, you can explore real mummies from around the world!

5. Campouts

Plan a campout in your very own backyard! Pitch a tent, fire up a grill or fire and enjoy the great outdoors from the comfort of your own home.

6. Movie under the Stars

Throughout the summer, Crown Center and other suburbs around the metro area host movie nights outside. You can plan to head out to a free show, the drive in or if able, watch one in your own yard!

7. Water Park DIY

Sometimes, it’s just too hot to go anywhere, wait in lines and really just leave the house. So turn your backyard into your own water park! Using pools, hoses and a few other miscellaneous items, you can bring the party to you! Check out Pinterest for some super easy ideas for all ages.

8. Parents Night Out

A lot of places around town offer parents night out. From churches to rec centers, theses are becoming more popular for both parents and kids. So why not finally take them up on that offer and plan a night out with your spouse and go dancing, eat at a fancy restaurant or meet up with friends! Parents Night Out usually lasts for about 3-4 hours so take a breather and enjoy some adult time!

9. Go Hiking/Biking

Nothing beats free during the summer time. With so many trails and parks around the metro area, got for a hike or ride through some trails. Don’t forget to pack a picnic and plenty of water!

10. Spend the night in a hotel

Just because you are not leaving your area doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the comfort of a nice hotel. Check out the rates of some of your favorite ones and enjoy a night away from the house. *Pro tip, make sure your hotel offers free wifi and breakfast to avoid extra costs*

I hope these ideas are enough to get you in the zone for planning your family staycation. I know my kiddos and I are already packing out our calendar!

From iFamily to Yours,

 

 

 

 

 

 


8 Super Tips to Throw a Successful Garage Sale This Summer

Well, Kansas City! It is that time of year again. The sun is (mostly..) shining, the trees are blooming, and the garage sales are forming! If you’re looking to rid yourself of some stuff this summer, check out our Mom Squad Ambassadors tips to make your garage sale fun and successful!

 

8 Super Tips to Throw a Successful Garage Sale This Summer

 

8 Super Tips to Throw a Successful Garage Sale
This Summer

 

Summer is here! Which means vacations, pools, grilling and—my favorite—garage sales! Here are some Pro Tips on how to throw a successful garage sale together quickly and painlessly.

 

#1 Get the word out.

8 Super Tips to Throw a Successful Garage Sale This Summer

 

Post your garage sale for free on CraigsList.org. Pick up signs at The Dollar Store and put bold arrows (we’re talking black Sharpie here, not a pen) on them, clearly directing cars to your house from the main streets. Find out if your neighborhood (or a nearby one) is planning on doing a neighborhood-wide sale and piggyback on that traffic.

 

#2 Price to sell.

8 Super Tips to Throw a Successful Garage Sale This Summer

 

Ok, first: If you want to get the most money out of your stuff, a garage sale is NOT the way to go. Try eBay, CraigsList or Facebook’s Marketplace and connect with buyers who are searching for exactly what you have to sell. Garage sale items need to be priced at you-don’t-need-this-but-it’s-so-cheap-you-kind-of-do-now prices.

 

Kid clothes. These can be really hard to part with, but if you want to move them, you’ve gotta price them $1 piece. Yes, even those precious overalls your toddler looked sooooo cute in.

 

#3 Group smaller items together. 

 

8 Super Tips to Throw a Successful Garage Sale This Summer

 

Instead of individual kitchen tools, rubber band 3-4 together and sell as a set. We had a whole bunch of toy musical instruments and instead of trying to sell them each individually, I put them in one box and sold them as “A Band in a Box.” Some cool, but foolish mother loved the fun idea as an activity for her kids and bought them.

 

#4 Make it easy.

8 Super Tips to Throw a Successful Garage Sale This Summer

 

I don’t have the time or patience to individually price all my items, so I grouped 90% of my items by price and had a $1 table, $2 table and $5 table. For bigger items, I made signs and taped right on the item.

 

Use sidewalk chalk to advertise prices. Ex. $1 each

 

Don’t mess with coins. Round everything up (or down) to the nearest dollar. If anything isn’t worth a dollar, throw it in the FREE box. Getting something for free will usually encourage shoppers to find something to buy, too.

 

#5 Beware.

Garage sales are prone to theft so be alert and smart. Avoid selling anything small and valuable that you can’t keep an eye on. And keep your sale money on you at all times. Avoid using a purse or cash box that someone can walk away with.

 

Examine large bills. I once had two teenage kids pick up the first cheap thing they saw and try and pass off a counterfeit $100 bill at my garage sale. Fortunately, my eagle-eyed sister rejected it before we lost $95 in change.

 

#6 Get your kids involved.

We lucked out with great weather during our garage sale so it was a good excuse for our whole family to be outside. My kids learned quickly the advantage of clearing out old stuff in exchange for some cash. They each took a table and offered help (probably too much) and assistance in selecting items. If anything sold from their table, they earned a commission.

 

#7 Get rid of it.

If someone wants your beloved lamp for $30 instead of $40, just give it to them and be glad to see it getting a new home.

 

Saturday around noon is about when all garage sale goers pack it up and go home so don’t plan on many customers after that. Right around the noon mark, start making deals. People will buy more when tempted with a good deal. We had one last car pull up while I was just starting to pack up so I told them everything was half off. I made another $90 off stuff that was just going to be packed up.

 

#8 Give it to a good cause.

Repeat after me:  Do NOT bring anything back into the house. Box up anything that didn’t sell and donate it to charity.  These organizations upcycle your items for a good cause and offer free pickup:

Ozanam

Sherwood Center

Or, drop off your items at a Goodwill location near you. Don’t forget to get a receipt so you can claim fair-market value tax deductions for your donation on your next tax return.

 

Becky Ervin is a Creative Director, mother of three, and blogs at PartyBoxKC.com/blog.

 

From iFamily to Yours,

 

 

 

 


Come Find Our Mom Squad This Summer Around Kansas City!

Howdy, Kansas City! Our Mom Squad has a busy few months ahead with all of the great events we have going on around the metro. There is something for every person and every family, so why don’t you come find us and explore a little bit of the city? We look forward to seeing you!

 

 

Come Find Our Mom Squad This Summer Around
Kansas City!

 

Clear your schedule and get ready for some awesome events this summer/ early fall throughout Kansas City! The iFamily #MomSquad will be out at some of the most anticipated events of the year and I for one am super excited! So make sure you mark your calendars for these upcoming events.

1. Lee’s Summit Downtown Days

June 2-4: This weekend long event is filled with music, food, craft vendors and even a Carnival! Prices do vary based on the vendors but Sunday is wristband day, you can purchase a wristband for $20 and get unlimited rides all day! Head over to their website for daily hours!

2. KC Baby Fair

June 11: Tickets to this event are $8 in advance or $12 the day of the show. Kids 12 and under are free! The KC Baby Fair will be located at the Overland Park Convention Center from 10:00am- 3:00 pm. This event is a must for expecting, or new moms! There will be great giveaways, freebies, learning tools and everything you need for your new little one.

3. Just for Her Expo

June 23-25: This event is perfect for the women in your life! The Just for Her Expo has everything from fashion & accessories to food, beauty and wellness. This event will be held at the Overland Park Convention Center. Tickets are $5 online or $8 at the door. They even have a few VIP tickets left for even more fun ($25 online only). Kid 12 and under are welcome and free to attend. Head over to their website for more information on daily hours!

 4. Docks Dogs at Scheels

July 29-30: The fun filled DockDogs, premier canine aquatic competition! This free event is located at Scheels of Overland Park, home of the giant ferris wheel! Come out and enjoy the competition, see cool tricks and meet some pups!

5. Chick Event: Handmade & Vintage

September 15-17: The ultimate craft event will arrive early this Fall! Head out to Johnson Farms in Belton, Mo September 15th-17th for unique handmade and vintage items from over 100 vendors! You can also enjoy live music, food & drinks plus fun kids activities. You can buy your tickets starting 13th. General admission is $5 or you can grab a weekend pass for only $8. Kids 12 and under are free!

 

We will be at so many more events throughout the year so make sure you keep checking back for updates and announcements! See y’all soon!

 

From iFamily to Yours,
Your iFamilyKC Team

 


Are You a Hello Kitty Fan? Check out this Food Truck at Town Center!

Are you a Hello Kitty fan? Our very own Mom Squad Ambassador, Sarah, has a great suggestion for a “Kitty” experience. Town Center has welcomed a Hello Kitty food truck, with great theming, and great fun for anyone who has an infinity for the cute little character. Check it out!
Are You a Hello Kitty Fan? Check out this Food Truck at Town Center!

Are You a Hello Kitty Fan? Check out this Food Truck at Town Center!

 

Welcome to the wonderful world of Hello Kitty! If you know someone who is even close to a fan of this mania that is Hello Kitty then you probably were at the same place I was on Saturday—The KC stop of the Hello Kitty Café food truck. Making its annual stop in Kansas City and, in particular Town Center in Leawood, I was amazed at the popularity. Hello Kitty is part of the Japanese company, Sanrio.
Appearing over 40 years ago with just one tiny coin purse, this massive empire now boasts over $600
million in revenue each year. Most of you will probably remember this craze during the 80’s and 90’s—and it has never lost its speed. The Hello Kitty US headquarters, located in Irvine, CA is considered the mecca to all things Hello Kitty and also a large player in the annual Hello Kitty Con located in Los
Angeles.
The Hello Kitty Café was born to bring the brand and this celebrity in her own right to the rest of the country. Depending mostly on social media and Town Center to promote this visit in particular, I was greeted by over 500 people waiting in line to purchase their goodies from the truck. I saw people decked out in their Hello Kitty merchandise, taking pictures, laughing and purchasing their collectible merchandise. The café’s menu is fairly simple; cookies, small cakes, bottled water, and merchandise
including a bow (of course) a mug and t-shirt. I spoke with one woman whose husband brought her for
Mother’s Day; but I am not sure if they were standing in that line! Another said they were there to line
up an hour before the café even opened at 8AM, she said the line had already formed and although their wait wasn’t too long, those that decided to make a last minute trip were probably met with at least a 2 hour wait.
Honestly I didn’t know that Hello Kitty was still this popular, and especially not in the Midwest. I remember always having to make a trip to Bannister Mall to the Hello Kitty store and oh how I wish I
would have kept some of that merchandise! Looking through the crowd you can see that Hello Kitty
appeals to so many and from so many different age groups, one of the most recognizable characters in
the world is truly an understatement. It was fun to take a step back into this sense of nostalgia and
introduce my girls to it. What an amazing event, one that I am sure a lot of people hope to make an
annual stop on the Hello Kitty circuit!
From iFamily to Yours,