How to Make Moana Kakamora Coconut Ornaments + Moana In Theaters!

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We got a sneak peek at the new Moana and I have to tell you… it is amazing. My daughter was glued to the screen as the story unraveled. Three thousand years ago, the greatest sailors in the world voyaged across the vast Pacific, discovering the many islands of Oceania. But then, for a millennium, their voyages stopped – and no one knows why.

The story of Moana goes through the history of her people and the reason why they never leave their island. As Moana takes off on a new adventure, we come to learn more about this missing pieces of her story and watch as she creates a story of her own. 

Throughout her adventures, my daughter’s favorite part in the movie is when Moana and Maui encounter the Kakamora. Seemingly sweet and gentle creatures in the beginning, Moana quickly learns of their fierce, warrior-like side. We’re recreating the Kakamora in these fun ornaments for the holiday season.

If you haven’t bought your tickets already, do so now! Moana is a must see and the story and music will take you away into another world. Visit the official MOANA website here

how-to-make-moana-kakamora-coconut-ornaments-supplies

How to Make Moana Kakamora Coconut Ornaments

What you’ll need: 

What you do: 

1. Paint a circle around the edge of the wood slice with brown paint leaving the middle wood exposed. 

2. Using the black paint, make two circles for eyes. 

3. With the white paint, make a mouth full of teeth. Outline in black if you’d like. 

4. Add the final touches to the face by adding some designs with red paint.

5. Screw eye screw on top of the ornament and string with ribbon. 

Let dry and hang on the tree to enjoy during the holiday season! 

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MOANA arrives in theatres everywhere on November 23rd!

Baby Gift Ideas For The Third Child

Today we’re sharing some great baby gift ideas for the third child with help from our sponsor, Huggies. Read on to find out what we’re leaving under the tree for our little one this year.

Baby Gift Ideas For The Third Child

As a mother of three I never thought there’d come a day where I was clueless at what to get one of my children for Christmas. There’s always something that they are wanting for even if it’s a small book or toy. But for Baby’s First Christmas, it’s hard to look at everything we have handed down to our third child from the first two and think of something else she needs for Christmas. I did what I always do in these situations and reached out to my mama tribe. You know, that group of online women who will help out whenever you need them? And who would have known? Every.single.idea was something we already had or gifted to the other two previously.

Why not wrap up something they don’t play with anymore and give it to her, right? Wrong. The other two would be mighty suspicious if I just wrapped up a bunch of their old toys to give to her. So, instead of wasting money on things she won’t use, I’ve come up with some practical gifts to place under the tree this holiday season for the third child. Especially on their first Christmas.

Baby Gift Ideas For The Third Child - diapers

Baby Gift Ideas For The Third Child

1. Diapers

So maybe this sounds boring, but after making the switch to disposable diapers after our third child was born, I realized the importance of staying stocked up on the basics. Even if it’s a bit boring. And with the hustle and bustle of the holidays, why not wrap a box of Huggies Little Movers diapers to put under the tree for your little one? My baby loves playing with the diaper boxes. In fact, she’s pretty obsessed with the babies ON the boxes and continues to talk and wave to them every time she finds the box in my closet. So a box of diapers is not only fun for my 10 month old, but something we’ll be using in the near future!

And like everyone else this time of year, I need to be able to easily grab what I need for baby and the family. Three kids means lots of parties, events, and presents to organize. So I get a little help during the holiday season – and throughout the year – with my Sam’s Club membership. I can use Sam’s Club pick up and have everything I’ve ordered ready for me when I arrive. Wrangling 3 kids in the store isn’t always the most fun so the option to have everything ready for me when I arrive makes the trip a lot smoother.

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Our go-to brand of diapers for Norah when we made the transition was Huggies. We used the Little Snugglers and loved how soft and absorbent they were. We weren’t woken up to find that they leaked at night like the others we’ve tried to use, and they kept her dry during the day as well. I was a huge fan of the wetness indicator! Now that she’s moving non-stop (Did I mention she’s cruising along now? Crazy how fast that happens!), we’ve switched over to the Huggies Little Movers. With DryTouch liner, contoured shape, Double grip strips, and leak lock protection, it’s Huggies moving Baby System!

2. Wipes

Just like diapers, wipes are something we use for EVERYTHING. Not just wiping bottoms! From washing toys that fell on the ground at a restaurant, to cleaning off surfaces, to wiping faces, wipes are not only useful in various situations, but they’re fun to pull out too. Just ask Norah. She’s emptied a wipe container faster than any of the others. And I only had my back turned for a second! They also serve as a chew toy if you aren’t fast enough to grab it too. Mmm… wipes!

I stock up on the big box of wipes from Sam’s Club and then wrap each individual wipe up so there’s more ripping and tearing. Then you can add the wipes back to the big box and wrap that up too! Who doesn’t love more presents to open?

3.  Clothes

Now for older kids this is the most boring present to receive, at least for my son. My daughter jumps for joy at the sight of clothes. As long as she approves and loves. But babies… babies love to play in clothes. When Norah see’s a freshly laundered pile of clothes on the living room couch she makes a bee line for them. And promptly pulls each and every piece off of the couch and onto the floor. So the dog can lay on them. FUN stuff right?

Since kids are constantly growing, and finding new ways to dirty up and stain their current clothes, new clothes is always a fun way to add more boxes under the tree to unwrap. Plus, if your baby is anything like mine, she’ll have it out of the box and playing with the outfit on the floor in no time.

4. Sippy Cups

Sippy cups and bottles are always disappearing in my home. I can have a full cupboard one day and later in the week there’s none to be found! Now that Norah is getting closer to a year, we’re starting to make the transition from bottles to sippy cups so we’ll be gifting her with a lot of varieties under the tree this year. The big man himself has even mentioned putting one or two in her stocking. The straw kind, of course. Because that’s what she prefers right now. Easier to spit out the contents when she’s sucking it out with a straw!

5. Boxes

Now of course the most obvious gift of all, and one we’ve been talking about all along, are boxes. Norah is a climber. You put down anything on the ground and she’s climbing right over it. Even if it’s only 2 inches up. Boxes are a huge deal to her and she loves being able to play with them. So we’re practical and stock up on the boxes that come in the mail with other presents (remember that Sam’s Club pick up? Well they also deliver too from online! Boxes galore here…). You can choose to wrap them, or leave them unwrapped. We prefer using some of the packing paper that came in the mailed boxes and recycling that as wrapping paper. Then grab a sharpie and start writing away!

Baby Gift Ideas For The Third Child - boxes

What will your baby be enjoying under the tree this Christmas?

Homemade Cranberry Tealight Candles

Homemade Cranberry Tealight Candle

During the holidays I’m always looking for easy DIY ways to decorate the house. I also love any decoration that could be turned into a makeshift gift. After a little trip to Ikea I found these awesome larger tealight candles that are perfect for making my own candles for different seasons.

This homemade cranberry tealight candle takes a mason jar, some cranberries, and a tealight and makes it into so much more! If you have a few of these supplies lying around why not try your hand at making your own decorative candle for the holidays. Add a bit of twine and you have the perfect centerpiece or mantle display.

How to Make a Homemade Cranberry Tealight Candle

What you’ll need:

  • regular mouth pint sized mason jars
  • bag of cranberries
  • Ikea GLIMMA candles
  • twine (optional)

Homemade Cranberry Tealight Candles supplies

What you do:

1. Take lid off mason jar and discard flat disc.

Homemade Cranberry Tealight Candles take off lid

2. Pour in cranberries.

Homemade Cranberry Tealight Candles  pour in cranberries

3. Stop at the fill line right below the neck of the jar.

Homemade Cranberry Tealight Candles fill to below lid line

4. Place the candle on top of the berries. Make sure it’s flush with the top of the jar.

Homemade Cranberry Tealight Candles add tealight

5. Screw on the lid.

Homemade Cranberry Tealight Candles screw on cap

6. Embellish with twine, or ribbon, and enjoy your candle!

Homemade Cranberry Tealight Candles finished

How do you create a festive atmosphere around the holidays?

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5 Reasons To Visit Knott’s Merry Farm In 2016

This post featuring Knott’s 2016 Season Passes and Knott’s Merry Farm is brought to you by GigaSavvy.

Knott's Merry Farm Peanuts Characters

In a few short weeks we’ll be heading out to visit Knott’s Berry Farm and cannot wait to see it transformed into Knott’s Merry Farm! If you’re visiting Southern California during the holiday season, this event is not to be missed. The one way to get everyone in the holiday spirit is to spend a day (or two) at Knott’s enjoying the sights, sounds, and smells of the winter season.

Holiday treats can be found all throughout Ghost Town, including fresh poured-to-order maple lollipops at the Gold Trails Hotel, holiday churros from the Churro Factory, and warm gingerbread men baked at the Farm Bakery. And while enjoying a few of those treats is close to the top of my kids list, one thing beats it out every year! The kids are most excited to meet Santa once again this year and have been planning what they’ll say to him and who will go first. They’re quite excited about our visit already and I can’t blame them. 

5 Reasons To Visit Knott’s Merry Farm

Merry Christmas Snoopy!

Joy is in season at Knott’s Merry Farm! Snoopy and a cast of world class ice skaters perform Merry Christmas, Snoopy!, a whimsical ice show bursting with characters and remarkable skating. Select dates, November 21 – Jan 3 (dark Wednesdays).

Knott's Merry Farm Shows

Santa’s Christmas Cabin

In Santa’s Christmas Cabin, guests can share their wish lists with jolly ol’ St. Nick and savor some of Knott’s world famous holiday treats.

Christmas in the Old West

Take a trip back in time and celebrate Christmas in the Old West town of Calico. Climb aboard the Calico Railroad for Christmas on Engine 41 and meet Ghost Town residents eager to share their holiday plans with you. Those looking for great gift ideas can shop Knott’s Christmas Crafts Village, a shopping wonderland where local artisans demonstrate their craft and sell their unique gifts.

Snoopy’s Merriest Tree Lighting

When the sun sets on the Farm, the buildings and paths in Ghost Town will twinkle to the beat of holiday music while snow gently falls. This year, snow falls across even more of Ghost Town, from the School House to the Saloon and down to the Assay Office. Another nighttime tradition at Knott’s Merry Farm is Snoopy’s Merriest Tree Lighting show on the Calico Square Stage. This whimsical tree lighting features a cast of marching toy soldiers, the loveable Mrs. Claus, dancing snowmen, and the world’s most famous beagle, Snoopy!

Knott's Berry Farm Calico Carolers

Stocking Stuffers

The perfect stocking stuffer is now on-sale! A 2016 Season Pass includes one free admission in 2015, unlimited visits in 2016 with no blackout dates, discounts on select food and merchandise, and access to exciting year-round seasonal events. For affordable year-round fun for everyone on your “nice” list, Season Passes start at just $81.00, the best price of the year for a limited time.

Make fun part of your holiday tradition at Knott’s Merry Farm from November 21-January 3.

What are you looking forward to seeing at Knott’s Merry Farm this year?

15 Santa Crafts

15 Santa Crafts - fun santa crafts to do during the holidays with or without the kids

‘Tis the season, for SANTA CRAFTS! I love love love doing Christmas crafts, so of course I have been on the look out for some cute Santa crafts, and boy did I find some. Below is a list of the CUTEST Santa crafts! I mean who would have thought, Santa hat chair covers?

Well obviously someone thought of it, and they super cute! I want them in my kitchen, like right now! From gifts to décor this list has it all! Enjoy and be sure to tell be below which ones you plan to try! I am thinking Santa hat chair covers, followed my Santa suit hand towels!

Merry Christmas and happy crafting!

 15 Santa Crafts

  1. Salt Dough Santa Ornament 
  2. Santa Treat Box (PICTURED)
  3. Santa Hat and Beard (PICTURED)
  4. Santa Stocking Holder (PICTURED)
  5. Santa Belly Jar (PICTURED)
  6. Santa Slime
  7. Santa Wreath
  8. Santa Footprints
  9. Santa Hat Decor
  10. Santa Gift Jar
  11. Santa Suit Hand Towels
  12. Santa Gift Bow
  13. Christmas Countdown Santa Printable
  14. Santa Hat Chair Covers
  15. Rudolph and Santa Ornaments

DIY Cricut Christmas Leaf Wreath Tutorial

DIY Cricut Christmas Leaf Wreath Tutorial

December is finally here and that means Christmas is literally weeks away. I love to decorate my home using my Cricut machine and being able to add such personality into my project is always a plus.

Today I’m sharing this DIY Cricut Christmas Leaf Wreath tutorial using a variety of Glittered Paper and Christmas Paper. Not only is it super easy to make, but it’s also one of the free designs that can be found in Cricut’s design space.

Hang it on a door, a wall or even the fridge and watch your guests stop and ask where it came from. This project was affordable and best of all so easy to make it’s even great to get the kids involved. Hope you really love this tutorial and will venture off to make your very own. It’s perfect for any place in the house! [Read more…]

SeaWorld Christmas Celebration: Creating Family Christmas Traditions

SeaWorld's Christmas Celebration - Creating Family Christmas Traditions

Last weekend we headed to Sea World to start a new family Christmas tradition. We were invited to attend a preview of the SeaWorld Christmas Celebration and boy was it fun!

With a whole line of Christmas-themed shows, real snow at SnowWorld®, beautiful lights everywhere AND Santa with reindeer games, our kids were in heaven. We let them plan the day out and gave them a list of the things we could do.

The best part was seeing the joy on their faces as they headed from one thing to another as they looked forward to their adventure. We’ll definitely be making the SeaWorld Christmas Celebration a tradition for our family.  [Read more…]

Merry Christmas 2013

Soft and Chewy Gingerbread Men Cookies

Soft and Chewy Gingerbread Cookies

While everyone was slaving away on Thanksgiving making beautiful turkeys, preparing casseroles, and baking bread, my family was baking something else… gingerbread men and women! My husband is slightly obsessed with the holidays and asked the kids if they wanted to make some soft and chewy gingerbread men to take with us to Thanksgiving dinner. You know, to get in the holiday spirit!

After they baked them up they turned the reigns over to me and had me make the royal icing and decorate the men and women. We threw in some turkeys and fall leaves (not pictured) to round out the merging of the holidays but most purists around the dinner table grabbed for the gingerbread men and women.

Now that we’ve found an awesome recipe for the cookies it’s time to start planning what recipe we’ll be using for the houses we construct!
Soft and Chewy Gingerbread cookies platter

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Soft and Chewy Gingerbread Men Cookies

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar packed
  • 3/4 cup molasses
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons ground roasted ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup white whole wheat flour
  • 2 1/2 cups Unbleached All-Purpose Flour

Royal Icing

  • 1/4 cup meringue powder or egg white powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar sifted
  • 3/4 cup cool water

Instructions

  1. In a saucepan set over low heat, or in the microwave, melt butter, then stir in the brown sugar, molasses, salt, and spices.
  2. Transfer the mixture to a medium-sized mixing bowl, let it cool to lukewarm, and beat in the egg.
  3. Whisk the baking powder and soda into the flour, and then stir these dry ingredients into the molasses mixture.
  4. Divide the dough in half, and wrap well. Refrigerate for 1 hour or longer.
  5. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Get out several baking sheets and line with parchment.
  6. Once the dough has chilled, take one piece of dough out of the refrigerator, and flour a clean work surface, and the dough. Roll it out as thin or thick as you like; for slightly less crisp cookies, roll it out more thickly. We go for 1/4 inch for a soft and chewy gingerbread man.
  7. Place the dough on parchment, and put a sheet of plastic wrap over it as you roll, pulling the plastic to eliminate wrinkles as necessary when rolling; this will keep dough from sticking without the need for additional flour.
  8. Cut out shapes with a cookie cutter, cutting them as close to one another as possible to minimize waste.
  9. Transfer the cookies to un-greased cookie sheets (or, if you've rolled right onto the parchment, remove the dough scraps between the cookies). Bake the cookies just until they're slightly brown around the edges 8 to 12 minutes, or until they feel firm.
  10. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheets for several minutes, or until they're set. Transfer them to a rack to cool completely. Repeat with the remaining dough.
  11. Decorate the cookies with Royal Icing.

For the Royal Icing:

  1. In a stand mixer or large bowl with electric mixer, add dry ingredients. Start the mixer and slowly pour in the cool water.
  2. Mix on low speed at first, increasing to high speed over several minutes. Beat until the icing is fluffy.
  3. Keep the frosting covered with a damp towel and some plastic wrap until you are ready to use it.
  4. Divide the frosting into smaller containers and mix with food coloring for several colors.

Soft and Chewy Gingerbread Men Cookies

What’s your favorite holiday cookie?

This recipe originally appeared on this site on December 1st, 2013

10 Holiday Stocking Stuffer Ideas from Dollar Tree

This post is sponsored by Dollar Tree.

Holiday Stocking Stuffer Ideas from Dollar TreeOne thing I absolutely love seeing my family open every year are their stockings. While Santa usually brings a few traditional items that are always included as stocking stuffers, he also throws in some fun goodies that the kids can play with and enjoy the morning of Christmas.

In an effort to reduce the amount Santa spends this year, we’ve decided to ask Santa for one big item each and then let him decide on a few smaller items for the stockings. So we headed out to one of my kids’ favorite stores, Dollar Tree, and checked out what they had in store for us this year.

And what do you know? We found plenty of awesome ideas for Santa! From board books, to dolls, do bugs and snakes, there was plenty at the Dollar Tree to keep my kids occupied. They even had stockings to purchase in case we didn’t have ours already. What a great idea for wrapping a gift!

Oh, and did I mention that for one of my family’s get togethers we’re planning on grabbing 5 things we love from Dollar Tree and wrapping those in lieu of our Secret Santa gift exchange? We’ll do it White Elephant style and everyone goes home with 5 new things! I can’t wait to go shopping and see what I find. [Read more…]



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