Saturday, November 26, 2011

Paint the Moon Photography FREE Holiday Sampler

See below for the offer from Paint the Moon!  Go to the Paint the Moon Facebook page to see more

Photoshop Actions FREE Download Holiday Gift PSE Elements Cards Templates Tags

Dollhouse "brother" or boy figure...

I bought Sissy this dollhouse for Christmas.
 It is a ToysRus brand and it comes with all the accessories you see.  I got it for $19.99.  All the other doll houses similar to this start at $50 or more and don't come with near as many furniture pieces.  The pieces sold separtely aren't cheap either when you add it all up.  I'm sure there is a quality difference and I won't know for sure until we see it.  This looks like it will be perfect for her!  The only thing I wish I could find was a brother or boy figure to go with it to match our family (well not the dog...she wishes :P).  There aren't any separate accessories available that I can see for this set or the "You and Me" brand.  I looked at other brands and did google searches and I can't find anything that will match (in a decent price range). 

Well...the closest is the African American brother & Sister.
Fisher-Price Loving Family Dollhouse Figures - Sister and Brother (Styles Vary) -  Fisher-Price - Toys"R"Us
I would like that the skin color would match my children since they would represent them, but I definitely prefer the African American kids to these.
In retrospect this set probably matches our pale skin better and those defintely look like my eyebrows. LOL  Seriously though...really?  Maybe my monitor colors are off.

I could get the caucasian siblings
It's selling on amazon (3rd party) for $41!  Why is it so hard to find a boy figure for a dollhouse?  I'm thinking the cute AA babies are still in 1st place.

How about a brother Diego?
Fisher-Price Dora the Explorer Dollhouse Figures - Diego with Cat and Sled -  Fisher-Price - Toys"R"Us
There are sets for a little sister.
Fisher-Price My First Dollhouse Sister -  Fisher-Price - Toys"R"Us
Grandma and Boy may be perfect, but we are still looking at $12(with the shipping).  The dollhouse was only $19
Fisher-Price Loving Family Grandma and Brother Dolls
The only concern with these or the African American kids is they may be too big for the dollhouse I got.  I guess a trip to ToysRus is in the future (not that we weren't going there soon anyway).  That or Sissy doesn't have a boy in her set.  I got a great deal and what's the point if I spend a lot to get her a boy figure.  I'm thinking the Daddy figure will have to double as the Daddy/Brother.  That or we'll have a Diego Brother. 

I really am suprised there aren't more boy figures available for the dollhouses.  I'm guessing it's the wonderful gender stereotypes.  I think there should be gender neutral dollhouses with boy/girl interior.  Let the boys play house. :-) 

I just found an official "brother" doll.  Should have gone to fisher prices website first. Duh.  He's a big brother though.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Family Photoshoot...attempt

I'm attempting a family photoshoot today.  I'm hoping to save $100's on studio pictures bydoing my own.  Wish me luck since I am pretty clueless on sudio lighting and such.  Here is a picture of Sissy help me practice a little this morning.  If all goes well, I'll post some more pictures later.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Hand Turkey Family Table Runner

When we went to SeaWorld over the summer they had a Handimal Art for sale.  They have the family put their hand print on a canvas and they make animals out of them.  It's really cute and I really wanted to do one.  I still want to do ducks for our bathroom.  I've seen places that make art out of children's hand/foot prints for their room.  I love it! 

I decided to make a hand Turkey table runner for Thanksgiving.  I am not very crafty or artistic, so I was a little worried on how it would turn out. 

Table runner - I was hoping Walmart would have a plain cheap one (I didn't have time to go other places to look).  I found this one for $13.
Fabric Paint (Brown, Red, Yellow, White, Black, Orange)
Paint Brushes
Fabric markers
Paper plate (or something to make a palette for mixing colors
Hands of each member of the family
I marked the center with one of Sissy's hair clips.

I mixed brown and white to make a lighter brown for the turkeys and mostly because I knew I needed a lot of brown.  I needed to stretch it further.  I painted on our hands and had each person put their hand print on the table runner.
I was going to paint the fingers different colors, but I realized with Sissy's that it was drying to fast and not coming out even, so I just went with all brown with the rest of us.
 I painted in the spaces and added the colors to our fingers.  I added the extras to the turkeys.  I was carefully using a paint brush for all of the details and when I was finished I remembered the the fabric paint has a thin pen like applicator.  Duh!  It would have been easier to just use them.  See...I'm not that crafty.

I painted the leaf we had found and tried to put the print on the table runner.  I had taken the kids on a leaf hunt earlier in the day, but we don't have any cool fall leaves in our neighborhood.  Thankfully, I had one leaf that I found at the park with the kids the other day.  The impression didn't work too well, so I went to buy fabric markers.  I traced the leaf and painted in the rest with brown and red on one side and orange and read on the other.

I finished painting in everything.  I used the fabric paints to add the leaf details and added our names and it's done! :)  Well almost.  I need to finish the leaf on the left and possibly outline our hands with the fabric marker to clean it up a little.

What do you think??

Oral-B Pajama Party

Oral care is very important and I know a lot of children don't receive regular dental care.  I work at a low income (Title one) school and I know many of my students don't get the care they need.  I was so glad last week when I saw a Dentist was on the schedule for our Great American teach in to teach children about dental hygiene.  So imagine my excitement when I found out I had an opportunity to host an Oral-B party.  We decided to have a pajama party and my daughter was SO excited.  All the kids received a movie ticket invite which they brought as their admission ticket and they came in their favorite PJ's.  I had a fun snack waiting for them when they arrived.

Is that peanut butter stuck in the teeth?  Good thing we have Oral-B toothbrushes. lol

The little ones couldn't wait to sneak a snack!

After their snack, they all got their popcorn (or Chester's Cheese flavored puffcorn for any too young for popcorn) from the "concession stand" and settled in for a showing of Disney's Winnie the Pooh Movie!  As soon as the movie started one of the kids yelled out "I love this movie!"  It's already a favorite in many homes.  They were so excited!

Even the little ones were interested in the movie and sat still for quite awhile!

We had a little intermission right after Pooh thought he was eating honey when he was really eating mud.  We had our version of Winnie the pooh Worms and Dirt Dessert Cups...or "dirt/mud" like Pooh ate in the movie.

 Then back to the movie. 

 We even had some Winnie the Pooh reading going on when an attention span didn't quite last long enough for the whole movie.

 When the movie was over each child received his/her own gift bag of Oral-B supplies.  They got an Oral-B stage I or II brush (depending on their age), Oral-B Stages toothpaste (Disney Princess, Toy Story, or Cars), Disney Lavender Hair & Body Wash, and lots of coupons and information about Oral-B. 

They loved their gifts and I know the Moms love it too.  It's not just something the kids love because they have their favorite characters are on them, but something they actually need.

We had the chance to try out our new toothbrushes a couple days before the party and my kids love them.  The stage I toothbrushes are for 4months - 24mos.  I like that the head of the brush is bigger than some other brands and the bristles are soft.  This is very important right now because Bubby is teething...really bad.  I don't think he's ever had one tooth come in at a time.  For him, it's at least 3 or more.  He has at least 5 teeth coming in right now and has not been happy.  His gums are so swollen and sore.  He does not like me brushing his teeth for obvious reasons.  At least with the Oral-B stage I brush the bristles are soft and I get get more brushed in one swipe with the the bigger head.  
He likes to "brush" on his own after Mommy does it first.
The stage II (ages 2-4) brush for Sissy has the bristles marked to show a pea sized amount for the fluoride toothpaste.  We don't usually let her use fluoride toothpaste because we worry about her swallowing it (I know probably irrational considering the amount, but that's normal...right?).  I know it sounds silly, but I really like the guide.  Obviously, I know what pea size is even though I hate peas, but I'm so used to putting toothpaste across all the bristles that the marks are a good reminder to how little she needs.  She will be using fluoride toothpaste from now on.  Check out Oral-B on Facebook.

A couple guest comments about Disney's Winnie the Pooh Movie

What was your favorite part of the movie?
  • "When Winnie the Pooh went to eat honey and fell in the hole."  Conner, 5
  • "Pink!  (Me: Piglet because he's pink??) Yes, I like Pink."  Makenna, 2
  • "My favorite part was when Owl flew out of the hole and everyone looks at him astonished and not because he could fly in and out." A Mommy
  • When Piglet flew into the letters and knocked them all down.  He giggled during this part and pointed.  Bubby, 18 mos
  • When Christopher Robbins showed up at the end with the red balloon.  Laz, 2  (smiled and got excited during this part...maybe it's the bright red balloon).
  • "It was funny when Pooh thought he was eating honey and it was really mud" Riley, 6
And a video from our household expert...Sissy.

This party was sponsored by Oral-B Stages I & II.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Leapfrog Explorer Games $9.37!

LeapFrog Explorer Learning Game - LeapSchool Reading -  LeapFrog - Toys"R"Us

ToysRus has Leapfrog Explorer games Buy1Get1 free @ 18.74 each.  This is an awesome deal.  I think I need to head out to my ToysRus and hope they have a decent stock left.  Plus if you are a member of the ToysRus rewards you get a free one if you buy 4.  Plus you get 10% back on everything purchased during the holiday season!

I did a quick google  search and found this:


You can have your order shipped for free with Shoprunner. Shoprunner offers a free 30 day trial, so sign up now and get these shipped to your house for free! Shoprunner includes free shipping to tons of stores including Toys R Us, Babies R Us, Timberland, Lord & Taylor, Domino’s Pizza and many more! This is a great time to start that trial so that you can pick up Black Friday, Cyber Monday and holiday offers and then be sure to cancel if the program is not for you!  Here


Well, apparently your mileage may vary.  They changed the sell to be online only which is almost sold out.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Gourmet Gift Baskets

I found Gourmet Gift Baskets through a friend and blogger at Surviving a Teacher's Salary.  I looked though their selection and they have a gift for everyone (seriously check it out)!  They have baskets of fruit, chocolate, brownies, cheesecake, breakfast, snacks, popcorn, toys, and so much more.  My favorite are the care packages.  The ones for children could be useful in so many situations when a child is away from home.  Any child would love to receive one of the care packages.  My daughter gets excited when she gets an envelope in the mail...let alone toys or snacks.  What child wouldn't be thrilled to receive this package?

I especially like that you can send the care packages to those in the Military.  My brother recently returned from a year long tour in Iraq (Army) and my brother in law just returned from Afghanistan (Marines).  I know they loved getting care packages.  There are so many things they miss while they are gone and they love getting a little piece of home.  I wish I had sent them one of these while they were deployed.

Gourmet Gift Baskets is offering to send two care packages to the Military for free if you create a blog post about their site and products.  See the details on Surviving a Teacher's Salary and enter to win your own basket.
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