New Years Eve is not the same as it once was. Now that we celebrate New Years with kids, we’ve changed things up to make things more kid-friendly. Including starting a little earlier than we once did.
Below are a few great ways to have a rockin’ New Years Eve with kids. From fun mocktails and food to fun and games, everyone will have a good time!
Start the Party Early!
There’s no need to wait till midnight in your timezone! Consider starting the party early and celebrate when the kids are still awake by choosing a different time zone. My brother in law hosts a GMT New Years Eve party every year where we count down to 4pm PST (0000 GMT).
The kids get the full experience of New Years Eve without having to force themselves to stay awake. Then the adults can celebrate how they’d like afterwards. Or go to bed with the kids at their normal time. I’m pretty sure I do the later every year even though I make an effort to stay up.
Get Creative with Mocktails
Grab some bottles of bubbly… bubbly apple cider and grape juice that is and start mixing up some fun concoctions (or let the kids make their own). All you need is some sparkling juice or sparkling water and a variety of other juices. Then let the kids have fun mixing them up
Consider adding a few mix ins like maraschino cherries or fresh fruits. And for dessert create an ice cream sundae or ice cream float bar!
Serve Up Kid-Friendly Foods
Miniature or small finger foods work best with the littles. Consider cooking up some mini corn dogs or sticking with a simple cheese, cracker and meat platter. And snacks are a must so consider a variety of bunnies, pretzels, fish, and grahams. And I’m sure the kids would go crazy for this Inside Out Garlic Cheese Bread.
Need something for the adults too? Grab a few bags of Pretzel Crisps, and whip up this delicious hot pizza dip. It’s a crowd pleaser!
If you’re looking for more traditional fare, consider making a batch of black eyed peas to bring good luck with you into the new year.
Have Some Fun
It isn’t a new years eve party without fun and games! Check out these great ways to ring in the new years with kids in style! From homemade balloon drops to creative ways to count down each hour, these bloggers have you covered!
- New Years Eve Bath
- Balloon Count Down
- New Years Eve Party Games and Ideas
- New Years Eve Paper Plate Shakers
In Southern California? Check out these kid-friendly New Years Eve parties hosted around town!
How do you celebrate New Years with kids?
This post was originally featured on December 26, 2013.
This past week I hosted an event at my house sponsored by Renew Life Probiotics. We enjoyed delicious food, tried new things (kombucha!), and had a frank discussion about gut health. Yup. We went there. But one thing I learned was that I’m not alone in my gut health issues. And there are a lot of things I could be doing differently to take better care of myself. So I’m sharing a few tips for gut health along with a recipe for delicious Bacon Brie and Sauerkraut egg cups. Yum!
All of my life I’ve had stomach issues. And I always assumed it was related to the ulcer that first developed when I was a pre-teen. Heartburn, tummy trouble, and digestive issues were always something I dealt with. And to be honest I just assumed it was normal. Didn’t really think anything more of it. Then I got older, I read more about our body and how everything is connected, and tried to see if there was something else going on.
Fast forward about a decade and I’ve finally figured out a solution to my issues. Probiotics.
No, seriously! While I only used them previously alongside antibiotics (for both myself and the kids), I’ve now started taking probiotics daily and boy have I noticed a difference. But that’s not the only change I’ve made. Probiotic rich foods, plenty of water, and healthy changes in diet can also play a huge role in gut health and one’s comfort. Opening the conversation with my guests allowed to me to learn more about how I can be proactive and focus on self care in the new year.
Tips For Gut Health
The “gut” is considered the core of your body’s overall health and well-being and can affect your entire body, including immunity, digestion and more. So that means paying attention to your gut health should be pretty high on your list of priorities.
Here are a few ways to do just that:
1. Start taking probiotics –
To help keep your complex digestive system thriving and restore good bacteria, Renew Life Ultimate Flora Probiotics deliver unique, potent formulas that contain tens of billions of cultures, and multiple probiotic strains to help achieve better digestive and immune health.*
2. Drink plenty of water –
Drinking enough water is so important for healthy digestion. Water helps break down the food you eat and allows waste to pass more easily through the intestines. It also helps boost nutrient absorption. Water also softens stool, which helps to prevent constipation. Yup… we’re getting real! If you aren’t a huge water drinker, you can infuse your water to make it taste delicious.
3. Talk about your gut health –
Whether it’s with friends, your doctor, or family, don’t be shy about speaking up about your gut health. If something doesn’t feel right, you more than likely need to change things up. Nearly two in three women (64 percent) aren’t willing to talk about gut issues with their friends. And with almost three quarters of women (72 percent) experiencing a digestive/gut issue in the past 12 months with gas/bloating (53 percent) being the most reported issue, you aren’t alone.
Nearly a quarter of women (22 percent) don’t consider the status of their digestive health when they think about their overall health and wellness, but it can affect your entire body, including mood, memory, immunity, digestion and more. By being proactive and talking about your issues, as well as taking probiotics regularly and getting enough water, you can help increase immunity, lessen the negative effects of gut issues, and find relief.
Gut-Friendly Probiotic Rich Foods
In addition to taking probiotics, you can also find them naturally in these probiotic-rich foods that are hosts to the good bacteria our guts need:
- Miso Soup
While some of these are easy to enjoy in our diet, others need a little… sneaking in. You can only eat so many hot dogs with sauerkraut. So finding other dishes to make with probiotic rich foods can give you more variety in your diet.
The Renew Life blog also has some great recipes as well! We made the fresh carrot, cabbage, and apple medley juice and quick and easy whole wheat pumpkin muffin recipes for this event and they both tasted so good!
- A proper functioning gut, containing a delicate balance of both good and bad bacteria, helps with digestive and immune health.
There are more than 100 trillion bacteria of many diverse strains inside your digestive tract which need to be balanced in order to keep your body healthy.
- 70% of the immune system is located in the intestinal tract, therefore, maintaining gut health is a key part of maintaining your overall health.
Signs that your gut is in need of replenishment and balance can include occasional bloating, constipation, diarrhea, fatigue, headaches, and weight gain among others.
- Experts agree that taking a probiotic supplement like Renew Life Ultimate Flora Probiotic is a good way to help support balance in the digestive tract and replenish the good bacteria found in a naturally diverse and healthy gut. It is reported that a person typically feels a difference after taking a probiotic supplement for 7-14 days.
Bacon Brie and Sauerkraut Egg Cups
A variation of this recipe
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 cubes frozen sauteed glazed onions (or 1/2 an onion, diced)
- 2 cups fresh spinach
- 6 slices cooked bacon, chopped
- 1/2 cup sauerkraut
- 6 eggs
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 container 16oz cottage cheese
- 1 8oz package of shredded cheddar
- salt and pepper
- 2oz brie cheese
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Add oil to large skillet and heat on medium high on the stove. Once hot, add onions to pan and saute 2-3 minutes. Then add spinach and cook until slightly wilted. Toss in bacon and sauerkraut and set aside to cool.
While spinach/bacon/onion mixture is cooling down, add eggs, milk, cottage cheese, and shredded cheddar to a bowl and mix together. Add salt and pepper to taste (about 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper). Drop pieces of brie cheese into the mixture and fold in. Then add spinach/bacon/onion mixture to eggs and combine.
Line 2 muffin tins with baking cups or spray well with cooking spray if not using baking cups. Using a large cookie scoop, scoop mixture into the muffin tin wells filling about 2/3-3/4ths of the way up.
Baket at 375 for 30-35 minutes or until top is starting to turn golden brown. Let cool 2-5 minutes and serve.
Makes approximately 24 but could get more if you scoop less into each cup.
What are your favorite gut-friendly foods?
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
**This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Poll on behalf of Renew Life Probiotics from November 9-11, 2016 among 1,127 U.S. women ages 18 and older. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact Katie Young at Katie@pdcpr.net.
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Renew Life Probiotics.
We have been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card in exchange for sharing our favorite last minute Minecraft gift ideas from Best Buy.
We’ve been a Minecraft crazed household since early last year. And just about any wish list my son brings to me has at least one Minecraft-inspired item on it. So if you’ve started hearing about Creepers and Ghasts and other weird sounding things, you may be introduced to Minecraft soon. And you may have seen a few Minecraft-related things on your child’s list. But don’t worry! It’s not too late to pick up some last minute Minecraft gifts with the help of Best Buy!
Build and explore exciting new worlds with Best Buy’s assortment of Minecraft games and collectibles. If you aren’t familiar with the awesome world of Minecraft, it is a game about placing blocks and going on adventures. Explore randomly generated worlds and build amazing things from the simplest of homes to the grandest of castles. Play in Creative Mode with unlimited resources or mine deep in Survival Mode, crafting weapons and armor to fend off dangerous mobs. Do all this alone or with friends. The games are very family-friendly and great for kids.
And even after you’ve started playing the game, there’s still fun to be had! The toys and collectibles make great gifts for anyone already into the game. Best Buy carries a large assortment the assortment of Minecraft products – this includes an Xbox One S console bundle, additional Minecraft games and Minecraft toys and collectibles. Check out our top picks below (each of these items is on my son’s wish list)!
Grab all of the Minecraft goodness here: http://bby.me/e7cb. And make sure to take advantage of FREE 2-day shipping to get it by Christmas or pick it up at your local Best Buy store by selecting store pick up. So convenient!
Last Minute Minecraft Gift Ideas
1. Minecraft RC Flying Ghast
At the top of my son’s list is this awesome Minecraft RC Flying Ghast. You get to bring one of the key mobs to life with this quadcopter! Using the remote control, you fly this Ghast quadcopter through the air as in the game.
The flying Ghast can move forward and backward, left and right, and up and down. Special features include 360-degree turns, automatic landing capabilities and a stunt button take the fun to new heights! This is a great gift for any Minecraft fan.
On sale for $20 off at $59.99! Killer deal. With free 2-day shipping, of course.
2. Minecraft Motion Movie Set
3. Minecraft Minifigure Collectors Case
Minecraft Minifigs are perfect for stocking stuffers or present toppers but you need somewhere to put them all! This Minecraft Minifigure Collectors case holds up to 32 figures and allows you to display and transport all of your little guys.
Organize and display your favorite Nether explorers in this Mattel Minecraft collector case. Flip it over to discover a Minecraft world complete with a playtime portal for entertaining creative minds. This lightweight Mattel Minecraft collector case includes six starter characters and a convenient handle that lets you easily transport up to 32 figures.
$39.99 right now with free 2 day shipping!
4. Minecraft Card Game
A great stocking stuffer at $12.99 and free 2 day shipping.
5. Microsoft XBox One S Minecraft Bundle
Upgrading your gaming system? You gotta check out the Xbox One S Minecraft Favorites Bundle (500GB), featuring everything you need to build, survive, and explore! Get full game downloads of Minecraft for Xbox One and Windows 10, plus thirteen fabulous, community-favorite content Packs, including Halo Mash-up and Festive Mash-up.
Craft new Minecraft worlds together with friends on Xbox Live, the most advanced multiplayer network. And now with the new Xbox One S, you can even watch 4K Blu-ray™ movies, stream Netflix and Amazon Video in stunning 4K Ultra HD, and play a growing library of Xbox 360 games. With all the biggest blockbusters this year, there’s never been a better time to jump ahead with Xbox One.
And right now you can score this bundle for $249.99 ($50 off)!
What’s on your Minecraft fan’s gift list?
Grab all of the Minecraft goodness here: http://bby.me/e7cb. And make sure to take advantage of FREE 2-day shipping to get it by Christmas or pick it up at your local Best Buy store by selecting store pick up.
My sister welcomed her 4th bundle of joy into the world about a month ago and we are so happy to have another niece! But before her arrival we started to celebrate her (and her momma) by hosting this Aloha Hawaiian themed baby shower. My sister’s husband is of Hawaiian and Mexican descent so it was only fitting to bring some flavors of his heritage into their celebration. And who doesn’t love some kalua pig or mac salad?
I used simple colors and decor when planning things and based everything on the invitation that I created in Canva using a template. I used that template to then make the other signs for the party including a welcome sign, lei sign, and food signs.
The leis were perfect for the leg crossing game – whoever sees another guest crossing their leg gets to take their lei. Normally it’s played with safety pins but this was more fitting for our theme.
We also played a baby word scramble and a word search. Since it was guys and gals I didn’t want it to be too girly. The guys, however, did score the least amount in both games but I’m not naming any names!
Looking for more baby shower games? Check out the Disney baby shower games here.
When I called up my sister and asked what kind of cake she wanted she said vanilla or chocolate. And I had to laugh. Really? I’m getting you a cake and you want plain vanilla or chocolate? So she jokingly said she wanted haupia cake, a Hawaiian cake. I then surprised her by ordering not only a beautiful ombre chocolate cake but haupia cupcakes. I suggested this recipe to a local baker and she ran with it!
Here’s everything I ordered for the decor:
- birds and blooms cupcake toppers
- palm tree cupcake toppers
- 12 pack of tropical leaves
- Hawaiian luau garland
- Tissue flower garland – my absolute favorite!
- 50 cloth flower leis
- raffia table skirting
Like my decor, I wanted to keep things simple with the menu. And I wanted to feed a large crowd without being left with tons of food at the end of the party. So I paired it down to two main courses – teriyaki skewers and kalua pig in the pressure cooker, rice in the rice cooker, mac salad, a green salad, and Hawaiian rolls. Because who doesn’t love Hawaiian rolls?
The kalua pig recipe I found was one that everyone in the instant pot community raves about. And now I know why! It’s so good. Like melt in your mouth good. And the Hawaiian red alaea sea salt totally is worth it.
By cooking the kalua pig in in the pressure cooker, skewers on the barbecue, and the rice in our rice cooker, we didn’t have anything cooking in the oven or on the stove. And I was able to make the mac salad recipe the night before so it could soak up all of the flavors. It really was the most simple menu to date at an event I’ve hosted. But so good!
The party took about an hour to set up beforehand and everything was prepped the night before for easy set up. Simple and pretty was my goal and I succeeded! Everyone had a great time and left home stuffed (I even sent home leftovers with my sister!). Definitely the sign of a great party! And now we get to love on our new niece.
Want a sneak peek at one of the newborn photos I took of her?
What’s your favorite Hawaiian food?
I’m not sure if it’s just me or it my friends are also having this same problem but as the kids get older I’m finding that it’s harder and harder to find out exactly what they want for Christmas. Or, as I’m experiencing with my son, things change from week to week so the one thing you thought was at the top of their list is now just eh. Frustrating, right?
Well this year I did a bit of research and if you’re like me and have an 8 year old boy, I’ve got you covered! Different price points, different types of toys, and all perfect 8 year old gifts.
Create , Animate and Share! Stikbot Studio Pro is the perfect way to get kids interested in stop motion video. This set include 1 tripod , 2 stikbots (solid red and solid orange color, 2in1 stage green and blue screen. With green screen , you can capture the best photo and video and save time editing. Easily cut and edit footage to create the sequence you need by using green screen. You can digitally recreate the background of your scene
Buy here on Amazon (Prime available): http://amzn.to/2guca5u
What 8 year old doesn’t love LEGO sets? From Minecraft to LEGO City to Superheros, LEGO sets come in all themes, sizes, and price points. Perfect for boys or girls.
IDO3D uses a cool blue LED light and soft, squeezable 3D pens that enable you to easily draw 3D objects! The IDO3D Vertical light attaches to each pen by clicking firmly into place. The light can easily be removed from one pen, and placed on another by simply pulling it off, and popping it onto another. It’s a snap!
With IDO3D Vertical, you can draw vertically, straight into the air. To do so, turn on your light, and simply draw upward by squeezing your pen and moving the tip vertically, away from your drawing surface. You can also make solid sheets of material by drawing on flat or curved surfaces, first with the light off, and curing afterward by shining the light on your art. Draw on non-sticky textured materials or objects like coins or buttons, and then remove for very cool effects.
Buy here on Amazon (Prime available): http://amzn.to/2hjPMeN
Osmo is an award-winning hands-on game system, fosters creativity & problem solving skills. The starter kit incldues 4 games – Words: puzzle form spelling, Newton: creative problem solving, Tangram: expand your visual thinking, and Masterpiece: supercharged drawing and is designed for kids 5-12. So siblings can play along as well!
Now this is one of those gifts my husband checked out before the holiday season and purchased as a joint gift for himself AND the two older kids. Yeah, you read that right. A gift for him and the kids. But boy were his instincts right! Cozmo is a real-life robot like you’ve only seen in movies, with a one-of-a-kind personality that evolves the more you hang out.
Cozmo expresses real emotions in response to your actions. He requires a free app and the processing power of your compatible mobile phone/tablet to access high level robotics functions that brings Cozmo to life. New games and upgrades are unlocked the more you play.
Cosmo may be hard to get now but keep an eye on when he comes back in stock: http://amzn.to/2gqt3sY
Dart Zone Magnum Superdrum Blaster
One way to get my kid out of the house (and off his video games) is to start a fun game of war. And this Dart Zone Magnum Superdrum Blaster is the perfect accessory for a friendly competition.
Grab yours here: http://amzn.to/2hjHEKY
What kid doesn’t love Minecraft, right? My son is still just as obsessed with Minecraft now as he was last year. And while he has the game, he still wants all of the toys, t-shirts, and stuffed animals out there. So many options for a Minecraft lover!
Magic Treehouse Box Sets
One thing I love finding for each kid is a good book for them for the new year and the Magic Treehouse series is one my son enjoys reading with us and by himself. Anything that will get him to read is a win-win in my book!
Grab books 1-4 here (more available if you’ve already read these!): http://amzn.to/2hk2DuC
Little Live Pets
I don’t know what it is about these little guys but both my 6 year old and 8 year old are obsessed with them. There are turtles, frogs, and mice available and each has their own little habitat they come in (or you can purchase them separately.
Check em out here: http://amzn.to/2htBjxg
What are your kids asking for under the tree?
This shop featuring the lazy mom’s guide to hosting a party has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #WipeAwayHolidayMess #CollectiveBias
My gorgeous little girl is turning 6 on Wednesday. Yup. 6. I remember when she was first born. She came so fast. Like she was ready to be here after waiting 5 days after her due date. Always on her time. And always like a whirlwind.
She insisted on a Shopkins themed party and I had to deliver. I mean come on, you only turn 6 once, right. In the 6 years of throwing parties for her, I’ve come to learn a thing or two about throwing together a party. And each year has gotten simpler and simpler with a few easy tricks I’ve learned.
Throwing a birthday party doesn’t have to be complicated. Or expensive for that matter. it just takes some creativity and a little bit of prep. And if cleaning isn’t your thing, I have some tips for that too!
The Lazy Mom’s Guide to Hosting A Birthday Party
1. Pick a theme
Now I normally leave themes up to the kids, but then I work on coming up with a basic color scheme to go along with that theme. In an effort to keep costs down, I only select a few character or themed items and coordinate those with solid color decor. I try to stock up on solid color plates and napkins, etc when I see them on sale so I don’t have to spend too much right before the party.
2. Do any prep work ahead of time
About a week out I like to do the simple things I may not find the time to do on the day of the party or the day before. I fill goodie bags, make sure I have the pinata ready to go, and do a quick cleaning of the main areas of the house. I also print out any printables I’ve made or found and assemble anything that needs to be assembled (like when I make my own happy birthday signs).
3. Only commit to making 1-2 food items
My biggest time saver and stress reliever is to only make 1-2 of the food items I serve at the kids parties. This year it was hot dogs and pasta with two different sauces (alfredo and marinara). We purchased the pizza, fruit, veggie tray, and cupcakes from the grocery store. And I added a little flair to the store bought cupcakes by purchasing some character rings and cupcake decorations online. Way cheaper than custom cupcakes or cakes!
4. Set up the night before
So that everything is ready to go, I always try to set up everything the night before. I lay out platters, make little notes about where I want things to go, and come up with a day-of game plan so I don’t forget anything. That way there’s less stress on me the day of. I also make sure my husband is in charge of picking up all of the food on the day of so I’m home to do any last minute tidying and to greet any early guests.
5. Don’t clean up during – or right after – the party
My biggest suggestion when hosting a party is to not worry about clean up. Especially when there are guests still at your home. We set out trash cans outside and inside so that guests know where things go (including recycling). And sometimes guests are so inclined to help pick up here and there. Let them! But don’t you dare pick up that piece of trash! This is your time to enjoy the fun your child is having with their friends.
When the party has ended, I simply put away any food items that are still left out. And that’s all I do. I leave the mess for the morning. Because by then I’m exhausted and why work more when it’ll all be there in the morning? The next morning I conquer and divide. I have one kid with a bag to pick up trash and the other with a bag to pick up recyclables.
Then I go around clearing any plates or dishes that may not have been put away. Next up is the dishes. Now you may be worried that because you didn’t clean up the night before, you might have some leftovers stuck to the dishes. That’s nothing a handy dandy Scotch-Brite® Scrubbing Dish Cloth can’t handle. The scrubbing dots on the one side of the dish cloth allow you to take on tough messes in the sink and across a variety of surfaces. Squeaky clean!
Then I unleash the best tools of all! Our dogs. We let them search around and find anything we may have missed. And it works like a charm!
So the next time you’re hosting a party remember to keep it simple! Choose a theme, but use solid color accents, do some prep work ahead of time, only make 1-2 items for the party and purchase the rest, and come up with a day of game plan (including NOT cleaning). Looking for some help in the kitchen? Just grab some Scotch-Brite Scrubbing Dish Cloths to help you out!
What are your tips for making party planning easier?
Head over to your local Ralphs to score an In-Store Clip Strip Offer for $1.00 off a 1-pack of Scotch-Brite Scrubbing Dish Cloths starting on 12/4! We found our Scotch-Brite Scrubbing Dish Cloths in the cleaning aisle.
One thing I always forget to get until the last minute are the stocking stuffers for the kids. It’s a task I normally will just give to my husband the night before Christmas eve and then we end up with too much or too little. So I’m going simple this year! Each of the kids will get a DVD in their stocking, an apple & an orange (tradition in our home), a See’s santa chocolate, and a Christmas lego. Simple but fun, right? Now what DVDs should I stick in their stocking?
Here are some ideas:
Disney and Amblin Entertainment, in association with Walden Media, present the fantasy adventure film “The BFG,” the first-ever motion picture adaptation of Roald Dahl’s resonant tale of childhood, the magic of dreams and the extraordinary friendship between a young girl and a big friendly giant. Directed by three-time Academy Award® winner Steven Spielberg, the film reunites the director with his Oscar®-nominated collaborator on “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial,” Melissa Mathison, who adapted the children’s author’s timeless adventure for the big screen.
This magical tale of an extraordinary friendship loaded with exciting extras will brighten the holidays for the whole family! “The BFG” comes to Digital HD, Blu-ray™ and Disney Movies Anywhere Dec. 6.
Purchase it on Amazon (through my affiliate link) here: http://amzn.to/2hLaReu
Elena of Avalor: Ready to Rule
Disney’s newest princess comes to DVD with the release of Elena of Avalor: Ready to Rule just in time for the Holidays! Join Elena as she learns about being a princess who will one day become a queen and rule her kingdom. She’s saved her kingdom from an evil sorceress who was trying to destroy Avalor, but that was the easy part! Elena’s journey leads her to understand that her new role requires thoughtfulness, resilience and compassion, the traits of all truly great leaders.
This DVD is packed with laughs, new characters to cherish, and heart, Elena of Avalor: Ready to Rule is a must-own for the entire family! Includes Four Full Episodes and a FREE Exclusive Projecting Scepter – A Great Holiday Gift! Bring home this charming series on Disney DVD December 6th!
Purchase it on Amazon (through my affiliate link) here: http://amzn.to/2hLf4Pr
LEGO Star Wars The Freemaker Adventures
Are you ready for more fantastic and fun LEGO Star Wars adventures? Of course you are! LEGO Star Wars The Freemaker Adventures Complete Season One arrives in our galaxy on Blu-ray and DVD on Dec. 6th.
Taking place between THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK and RETURN OF THE JEDI, this new Lego Star Wars series follows a family of scavengers who build and sell starships from battle debris strewn throughout the galaxy. When their youngest discovers a natural connection with the Force through an ancient artifact – the Kyber Saber –he and his family are thrown into an epic struggle against the Empire to restore peace and freedom to the galaxy. The Freemakers explore new worlds, meet new and familiar characters and discover the strength of family.
Now you can relive all 13 action-packed episodes in LEGO Star Wars: The Freemaker Adventures Season One, with new bonus features and 6 exclusive Lego Star Wars magnets available nowhere else! This is a must-have release for fans!!
Purchase it on Amazon (through my affiliate link) here: http://amzn.to/2hLauAz
What are your top stocking stuffer ideas?
This post featuring creative ways to find bonding time with your kids is sponsored by K’NEX.
As the kids grow older they start to become more of their own person. Family game nights aren’t always as easy as they were before and choosing something each child likes to do can be downright hard. So I’ve started thinking outside the box when I want to find bonding time with the kids. When we were sent the K’NEX Wild Whiplash Roller Coaster I knew I could get creative and find a way to turn this fun toy into a way to spend more time with my oldest.
You can find a few tips on more creative ways to find bonding time with your kids below.
Creative Ways To Find Bonding Time With Your Kids
When I had my son I was so excited to start planning all of the fun activities we’d do together. I planned zoo trips, playdates, and as he got older, I purchased games we could play together. But as he got older, and as his siblings arrived, I realized that one on one time with him was getting fewer and farther between. So I started to make an effort to spend time – quality time – with him (and his siblings) one on one. Sure we have a lot of family outings and activities, but spending that time just the two of us is so important. And every time I’m with him I learn more about the person he’s becoming.
The first step in making sure bonding time actually happens is to schedule it. Look at your family calendar and talk with your significant other to plan a day or a few hours where they hang out with the other kids so you can enjoy one on one time. If this is something you want to do regularly, keep it on the calendar and repeat it once a month.
Find Fun Activities
While it may be hard to find fun activities that both of you enjoy together, there’s always something out there. I start by seeing what my son is interested in and suggesting we do something centered around his likes. Then after a few times of playing video games, or building fun K’NEX sets, I start suggesting other activities. And by planning ahead, I can find projects we can work on together, places we can visit, and other things we can do just the two of us.
When all else fails, get outdoors! My son loves staying holed up in his room playing on the tablet but when I actually get him outside the house or doing an activity, he starts opening up and actually enjoys himself. Even when we’re short on time, I’ll grab him and ask if he’ll go for a walk around the neighborhood with me. Pretty soon he’s finding a bug or tracking a lizard and talking about everything he knows about them. I love it!
Over the past weekend my son and I tackled our next project together. We built an awesome roller coaster! The Wild Whiplash Roller Coaster stands over 2 1/2 feet high when built and provided hours of amusement for us. We worked on problem-solving with plenty of brainteasers for my son and I to tackle together. And while my head may have hurt at times, it was so worth it to complete this set with my son and watch his joy as the roller coaster finally worked and took the car up and down the tracks!
You can find this set exclusively at Walmart. It’s a great gift for kids ages 9+. But my 7 year old was able to complete it with my help which made it even more awesome.