Disney’s CARS 3 Road to the Races in San Diego

Are your kids’ huge Cars fans? Well, you’re in luck! The CARS 3 Road to the Races Tour is in San Diego tomorrow June 6th! 

This is an amazing FREE event for San Diego families at Belmont Park in Mission Beach. It’s going to be HUGE- with tons of freebies and photo opps with your favorite CARS 3 characters.

You won’t want to miss this fun event! 

Before the event, check out these activity sheets including a “Race to the Finish” board game, a build your own Race Course activity and a delicious Corn Fritters recipe!

Click below to download activities! 

Piston Cup Race Maze

Memory Race

Spot the Difference

Make Your Own Race Course

Miss Fritter’s Corn Fritters

Not in San Diego? Check here to see if there’s an event in your neighborhood! 

Disney Pixar’s CARS 3 opens everywhere June 16th! 

Star Wars Rogue One Perler Bead Templates: Rebel Alliance and Galactic Empire

Use these Rogue One Rebel Alliance and Galactic Empire Perler Bead Templates to show the world if you’re on the dark side or the light side and see if your true Jedi comes out! 

May the 4th… er… April the 4th be with you. 

Today’s the day!! Did you preorder your copy of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story? If not, get on it! It comes out on Blu-ray/DVD today and is the perfect addition to your ever-growing collection of Star Wars movies. 

The fact that it is being released on my husband’s birthday did not escape me. How perfect is it to have one of your favorite movie franchises release a movie ON your birthday? Kismet! In celebration of my husband’s birthday and the release of Rogue One on store shelves, my daughter and I got to crafting to make the perfect birthday gift for dad: Star Wars Perler Bead creations! 

My daughter has been obsessed with her Perler beads since receiving them for Christmas this past year so when she was thinking of what to make her dad for a birthday gift, she immediately went and grabbed her Perler bead kit. But she couldn’t figure out what to make.  [Read more…]

DIY Rose Hair Tie inspired by Beauty and the Beast

In celebration of the new Beauty and the Beast that hit theaters last week, my daughter asked me if I could make her a special hair tie to wear when I take her to see it. And since I’m always up for a challenge, I got to work to quickly make a cute DIY rose hair tie for her to wear. 

Since she also had some leftover hair clips from St. Patrick’s Day, we used a few of those to make rose clips as well. We always try to craft with what we have around the house so feel free to adapt and create as you go to make the perfect rose hair accessory for you or your little one! 

What I love about this craft is how easy it is to put together. You can have a super cute hair accessory in less than 5 minutes! 

Here’s how: 

DIY Rose Hair Tie

What you’ll need: 

  • red felt
  • green felt
  • scissors
  • hair ties or hair clips
  • hot glue gun or crafting glue

What you do: 

1. Cut a 2″ circle out of the red felt. The size of the rose will be determined by the size of the circle so you can adjust to a larger circle for a bigger rose or smaller circle for a smaller rose. 

2. Cut out a spiral into the circle leaving a small center to use as the base of your rose. 

3. Take your spiral and cut a scalloped edge on the outer edge of the spiral to create the petals of your rose. 

4. Gather the spiral scallops and, taking the center, start to tightly wrap the petals around the center of the spiral until a rose forms. 

5. Using the glue, secure the edge of the rose to the side so that it doesn’t unravel. 

6. Cut out some leaves out of the green felt. Start by cutting out a marquis first and then cutting into the marquis to form a round center with two petals coming out of it (see video for visual instructions). 

7. Take your hair tie and glue the leaves onto the bottom end of the seam of your hair tie. Then add glue onto the hair tie and leaves to adhere the rose to the center. 

8. Let set completely before pulling your hair into a pony tail to show off your new hair tie! 

Did you see Beauty and the Beast yet? What did you think? 

Read our review here

How to Create a Wishing Star Wand + Pinnochio on DVD

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My daughter is obsessed with all things wands, swards, and sticks. Anything she can swing around and bop people on the head with (gently of course), she loves. And with our recent obsession with Pinocchio since it came out on Blu-Ray, it was the perfect way to commemorate the movie.

As we were planning for a family movie night, I decided to let the kids make their own wands customized to their likes and needs. It really was a simple craft and the kids had a great time doing it! With the help of mom and a glue gun to finish everything off.

So if you’re little princess loves wands as much as mine do, I highly suggest trying your hand at making a wishing star wand. It’s simple, easy, and takes less than 5 minutes!

How to Create a Wishing Star Wand

What you’ll need:

  • wooden dowels, cut to size (we purchased 48″ dowels and cut them in thirds)
  • felt, any color
  • ribbon, any color
  • glue gun

What you do: 

1. Cut out felt into the size and shape you want for the top of your wand. Cut out coordinating ribbon in the amount and length you prefer.

2. Do a dry run before gluing everything together to make sure the felt pieces fit together on the top of the wand.

3. Tie the ribbon onto the top of the stick and secure with the hot glue.

3a. Make sure to go all around the dowel so that the ribbon doesn’t slip down.

4. Now it’s time to glue down the felt pieces. Start with a small dab on one side of the dowel and adhere the first felt piece.

5. Then add a few dabs of hot glue to the other end of the dowel and the felt piece already adhered. Place the second felt piece on top covering the top of the dowel completely and sandwiching the ribbon in between the two felt pieces.

 
6. Hand the wand over to your favorite princess and watch them play! 

See how easy that was?

What type of wand would you make?

Disney’s timeless tale Pinocchio, considered one of the greatest animated films ever made with two Academy Awards, joins the Walt Disney Signature Collection. Now it will delight a whole new generation of dreamers with its masterful animation, unforgettable characters and award-winning music.

The movie which inspired the world to wish upon a star, arrives for the first time on Digital HD and Disney Movies Anywhere on Jan. 10, and on Blu-ray™ and DVD on Jan. 31 with hours of new and classic bonus features.

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

review affiliate link disclaimerhow-to-make-moana-kakamora-coconut-ornaments

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! 

how-to-make-moana-kakamora-coconut-ornaments-on-the-tree

Like MOANA on Facebook | Follow MOANA on Twitter | Follow Disney Animation on Instagram

MOANA arrives in theatres everywhere on November 23rd!

Squirt’s Kelp Forest Smoothie Recipe + Finding Dory Now On BluRay/DVD

squirts-kelp-forest-smoothie

Finding Dory picks up shortly after the original Finding Dory. As you can recall Dory suffers from short term memory loss which prevents her from remembering how she become alone in the ocean. Dory suddenly remembers a place from her childhood and sets off to find it with her new adopted family Marlin and Nemo.

Finding Dory Hank

This movie followed the classic sequel formula. It revisited memorable places, interacted with favorite characters, introduced new memorable characters, and added a new environment for the characters to conquer. The movie does a good job of telling an entertaining story and is a solid new adventure. If you enjoyed Finding Nemo you will enjoy this too.

My kids enjoyed the new character Hank the octopus. There was scene in a kids touch pool involving Hank and an ink release that my Daughter thought was funny. She also liked the use of sea shells to that served to guide Dory back home (used as a memory aide for Dory).

Finding Dory Destiny

Squirt’s Kelp Forest Smoothie

  • 1 1/2 cups coconut water
  • 1 cup fresh baby spinach
  • 1 ripe frozen banana
  • 1 pear, cored and sliced
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 4-6 ice cubes
  • 2 fresh strawberries for garnish

Combine coconut water, baby spinach, frozen banana, pear and cinnamon in blender and process until smooth. 

Add ice cubes, as needed, blend until desired consistency is reached. 

Pour into two glasses and garnish with a fresh strawberry to resemble squirt’s red spots. Kids can help with this. Enjoy immediately! 

Print PDF of recipe here

Finding Dory Hank and Dory

Overall a solid family movie and one that will find a spot in your kids movie rotation. Plus it makes a great stocking stuffer!

Purchase it on Amazon through my affiliate link here: http://amzn.to/2fRdCLs

If you’re considering getting a pet, make sure to do your research! You can get help from this great resource here. And remember, while clown fish who resemble Nemo may be good pets with the proper set up, blue tang fish like Dory should not be purchased as pets

FINDING DORY is now on store shelves everywhere!

Christmas Came Early: Star Wars The Force Awakens

Star Wars The Force Awakens

A Christmas gift delivered early, is what Star Wars The Force Awakens is and what a special treat it is! When this film was announced I felt a nervous excitement. Would it feel like Star Wars? Would the story be any good? Would the original cast be back? Well, that would be yes, yes, and yes. 

We start with the familiar Star Wars scroll to fill us in on with what has happened since Endor. Pieces of the Empire, now organized as the First Order, have carried on and continued to wage war with the Rebels, now called the Resistance. It is still good versus evil. And, of course, we have a Star Wars mystery on our hands. Luke has started a new Jedi Academy, but it has been disbanded when one of his students turns on him which drives Luke into hiding. We just don’t fully know the circumstances of this event yet and no one knows exactly where he is. The rest of movie revolves around both sides getting to Luke first. We meet two new young characters along the way who help with this quest. The first Rey, a scavenger on the planet Jakku and Finn a former stormtrooper. Rae has an interesting backstory that has yet to be revealed I think. Finn provides some heart and is a character that is battling the urge to run versus standing up for something more. Finally, we have our bad guys Kylo Ren and General Hux guided by a mysterious figure named supreme leader Snoke who give good chase throughout the movie.

Star Wars The Force Awakens - Storm Trooper

This movie really felt like the Star Wars universe of episodes 4­-6. It had a lot of creatures and droids that appeared to be very well done puppets and it had the signature “lived in feel” that Star Wars pioneered. The imagery on Jakku was amazing with the backdrop of the decaying war machine relics of a battle between the Empire and the Rebels. Throughout the movie, we are treated to mementos of the previous films. I was also pleasantly surprised by some of the humor mixed in.

I enjoyed seeing the original cast’s presence in the film. The roles they were given were a satisfying bridge between the old trilogy and this new one. The new characters were engaging enough and as a member of the audience felt vested them. The story is not overly complex and easy to understand as opposed to some of the prequels. For the most part, I was able to suspend my belief as the story unfolds. After a first viewing (I plan to see this one more time in the theater) I put this at 2nd or 3rd place in the series behind Empire Strikes Back, my personal favorite, and A New Hope.

Star Wars The Force Awakens - Dark Side

With the marketing machine going strong in the toy aisles across America your kids probably know about this movie. So should you take them to see it? The movie is rated PG­13 and it gets that from what I can tell is all the blaster fire and storm troopers dying. There was a scene or two with some blood. The language seemed to be okay with no swear words that I could recall. I would recommend 7 years and older.

STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS arrives in theaters everywhere on December 18th!

Planning to wait in line to watch the movie? Print out this Star Wars Activity Packet to make the wait more fun!

Are you heading to the theaters this weekend to see The Force Awakens?

5 Awesome Family Movie Night Movies For Kids Coming Out Soon

5 Awesome Family Movie Night Movies For Kids Coming Out Soon

I don’t know about you but I love to hoard a few movies from my kids to bust out on lazy days. Or rainy days where we don’t have any other plans. Being able to sneak out a movie that just came out and share it with them is always fun! Plus it’s a great excuse to pop some popcorn and snuggle up. I’ve received a few DVDs for review with the kids and cannot wait to share them with you so you can enjoy your own family movie night soon!

5 Awesome Family Movie Night Movies For Kids - Minions

5 Awesome Family Movie Night Movies

1. Minions

Are your minions… er… kids as excited about Minions on DVD/Blu Ray as mine are? As soon as my daughter heard them announce that Minions were available, she hounded me every day until the day it was released. Talk about pressure when you are trying to save a movie as a Christmas gift! Now that the cat’s out of the bag and the movie won’t be a Christmas gift, we’re looking at other Minions inspired gifts Santa can place in the kids stockings this year. If you have a Minions fan in your home, you won’t want to miss these!

The breakout stars the world fell in love with in Universal Pictures and Illumination Entertainment’s Despicable Me global film franchise headline their own movie for the first time in Minions, available on Digital HD November 24, 2015, and on Blu-ray™ Combo Pack, DVD and On Demand on December 8, 2015 from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment. A much anticipated prequel to the unprecedented worldwide blockbusters Despicable Me and the beloved sequel Despicable Me 2, Minions is an immensely entertaining film for all audiences called “inventive and hilarious” by Julian Roman, Movieweb.com. The Blu-ray™ Combo Pack and Digital HD also come with three all-new mini-movies and even more Minions everyone will want to watch again and again especially during the busy holiday travel season.

5 Awesome Family Movie Night Movies For Kids - Wild Kratts

2. Wild Kratts Australian Adventures

PBS is releasing “WILD KRATTS: AUSTRALIAN ADVENTURES” on DVD January 5, 2016. “AUSTRALIAN ADVENTURES” includes three episodes of the PBS KIDS hit series WILD KRATTS, one of which is a bonus story! From exploring how a thorny devil drinks water to learning about a koala’s favorite food, kids can join the Kratt Brothers as they travel throughout Australia and provide insight into some amazing and unique animals.

In the first two episodes on this DVD, the Kratt Brothers explore the Australian Outback. In “Koala Balloon,” the brothers find a stranded koala in the desert. In order to help the koala the brothers work to get their new friend back to its eucalyptus forest habitat. In “Kickin’ it with the Roos,” the brothers are motoring through the Australian Outback in the createrra looking for red kangaroos. When the brothers finally locate a mob of red kangaroos, they run into trouble when the keys to the createrra are stolen by a joey. This episode also features two fascinating birds – a kookaburra and a wedge-tailed eagle!

In the bonus episode on this DVD, “Platypus Café,” the brothers learn about one of the most unusual animals in the world – the duck-billed platypus. In order to get to know this creature, Martin and Chris use the miniaturizer to shrink and enter a platypus burrow.

3. Hotel Transylvania 2

Sony Pictures Animation’s monster family box-office hit HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA 2, which grossed more than $430 million in theaters worldwide to date, will debut on Digital HD Dec. 22, just in time for holiday viewing and on Blu-ray 3D™ Combo Pack, Blu-ray™ Combo Pack and DVD on Jan. 12 from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.

The Hotel Transylvania sequel reunites ‘Drac’s Pack’ of loveable characters, led by “Vampa” Drac (Adam Sandler, Grown-Ups) as they try to put Mavis (Selena Gomez, Spring Breakers) and Johnny’s (Andy Samberg, TV’s “Brooklyn Nine-Nine”) son Dennis through a “monster-in-training” boot camp to bring out his vampire side. But little do they know that Drac’s grumpy and very old, old, old school dad Vlad (comedy legend Mel Brooks) is about to pay the family a visit to the hotel. And when Vlad finds out that his great-grandson is not a pure blood and humans are now welcome at Hotel Transylvania, it doesn’t take long for things to get batty!

4. Captain Jake and the Neverland Pirates: The Great Never Sea Conquest

Captain Jake and the Neverland Pirates: The Great Never Sea Conquest is available to Own on Disney DVD on Jan. 12! Join newly promoted Captain Jake as he unites Never Land’s all-time greatest pirates! When evil mer-witch Ezmeralda tries to take over the Never Sea by awakening the Strake, a legendary three-headed sea serpent, Jake and his crew try to intervene but encounter Lord Fathom and his sidekick Sinker. Jake forms a team of “Never Land League of Pirate Captains” to battle them all and in the process, outfitted with a magical new sword and a powerful new ship, (the Mighty Colossus), he becomes a Captain himself. Loaded with excitement, additional adventures and a powerful message about believing in yourself, this high-stakes, high-seas adventure is oceans of swashbuckling fun for everyone!

5. Snow White

Forever enchanting and inspiring, Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs embodies The Walt Disney Signature Collection’s legacy of animation. In this epic story of love and friendship, the kind and beautiful princess Snow White wins the hearts of the Seven Dwarfs and triumphs over the evil plans of a wicked Queen. Share the movie called “The Greatest Animated Film Of All Time,” (American Film Institute) on Blu-ray February 2nd and on Digital HD January 19th, with special features for the entire family!

What’s your child’s favorite movie right now?

DIY Dinosaur Hoodie

DIY Dinosaur Hoodie

Last Halloween when I was busy figuring out costumes for the kids to wear I got a request from my son for a dinosaur costume. Since I know he doesn’t like big, full body costumes I thought that trying my hand at a DIY dinosaur hoodie would be easier for him to wear. Well a few months later and the hoodie is getting great use… as a fabulous addition to our dress up closet! And it’ll be the perfect thing to wear to The Good Dinosaur movie when it comes out on November 25th! 

Not only is this hoodie easy to make, it’s almost no-sew! With only a small bit of sewing needed (thanks to the wonderful product that is No Sew), even the amateur crafter can pull off this simple costume. All you need are some matching pants and some socks to cover your shoes and you have the perfect DIY costume for Halloween.

DIY Dinosaur Hoodie side profile

DIY Dinosaur Hoodie

What you need:

  • zip up hoodie jacket
  • adhesive felt in different colors (for spikes, eyes, and belly)
  • 1 piece regular felt (for tail) + more for stuffing tail
  • No Sew adhesive for fabric
  • needle and thread

What you do:

  1. Cut out 8 triangle shapes for spikes.
  2. Cut out a circle in one color felt. Cut that circle in half and adhere to either side of zipper on belly of jacket. Cut out zig zag pattern for decoration for belly in different colors and adhere to half circles.
  3. Cut out eyes using one color for the eye lid, one color for the eyeball, and one color for the pupil.
  4. Take felt for tail and create a cone. Using No Sew adhesive, glue cone in shape so that it stays. Trim away any additional felt.
  5. Stuff tail cone with additional felt and use No Sew to close cone opening.
  6. Using needle and thread, adhere cone tail to bottom back of jacket to secure in place.
  7. Add spikes to the hoodie of the jacket by taking two triangles, removing the adhesive backing, and placing together on the seam of the hoodie.
  8. Make sure about 1/2 an inch is attached to the jacket hoodie with the rest adhering to the other triangle. Use No Sew if additional adhesion is needed. Repeat with other three spikes.
  9. Adhere eyes to side of hood to give the illusion of dino eyes when the jacket is on.
  10. Let No Sew dry completely before letting your child wear the jacket.

Diy Dinosaur Hoodie 2

What themed hoodie would you love to create for Halloween?

THE GOOD DINOSAUR opens in theatres everywhere on November 25th!

Like THE GOOD DINOSAUR on Facebook | Follow @THEGOODDINOSAUR on Twitter | Visit the official THE GOOD DINOSAUR website

A little sneak peek at the movie:

Avengers: Age of Ultron – Date Night OR Family Night?

Avengers Age Of Ultron

It is time for the big summer movies and Avengers: Age of Ultron does not dissappoint, so grab your favorite date or huge Marvel comic fan and sit down for entertaining 2 and 1/2 hour adventure.

This movie is a good blend of fast paced action, humor, and special effects. The premise is that Ultron was created by Tony Stark (Iron Man) assisted by Bruce Banner (the Hulk) to protect the world from bad guys thus making the Avenger’s jobs easier or not needed. Like only a computer mind can do it figures out the best way to protect imperfect humans is for them to evolve.

Marvel's Avengers: Age Of Ultron..Conceptual Artwork..?Marvel 2015

Unfortunately Ultron’s plans to spur a new race of humans is a global cleansing of the existing gene pool. So our heros cross the globe hunting down the robotic villian Ultron who is assisted by two twins that have been inhanced with special powers and his many robotic copies.

Its enjoyable when a movie’s characters have a good repore on sceen. These scenes lend themselves to some good humorous moments, like when each hero takes a turn attempting to lift’s Thor’s hammer and his reaction when it budges. Further the movie avoids some of the cookie cutter patterns when the movie sets up one of heros as a family man we are not subjected to watching him sacrifice himself later. The character of Ultron is very interesting on screen and his vocal work was very well done.

Avengers Age Of Ultron Thor and Captain America

This movie is a fun one to share with a date. You will both laugh and enjoy the action. If bringing children the movie was rated PG-13, so it is most likely too intense, in my opinion, for anyone under 10 years old. It also has a little profanity that some parents may not care to have their children hear.

Also? Stay until after the credits… you’ll thank me later!

Check this clip for a great sneak peek:

Will you be seeing Avengers: Age of Ultron this weekend? Already saw it? What did you think?

This post written by my husband, Joseph Simmons.



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