Apr 252016
 

Off the Beaten Path Travel Spots in Washington DC

If you have ever been to Washington DC you know that there are TONS of historical and monumental places to visit. There are museums, statues, national treasures galore! But for all of those super popular travel destinations there are twice as many awesome off the beaten path travel spots in Washington DC. DC is full of awesome local activities and locations; you can easily pack your travel calendar full of activities that have nothing to do with the main tourist attractions! These ideas are great for any trip but are also really awesome spots to hit if you get to travel to DC more frequently than the “once in a lifetime, camera toting, typical DC tourist”. If you like to check out great local finds, quirky hidden gems, or if you just need a change of pace from the typical tourist loop then these places are definitely for you!

Arlington Farmer’s Market
You can check out the Arlington Farmer’s Market if you are ever in DC on a Saturday! They set up near the Arlington Courthouse (and equally cool place to check out) and have all kinds of local produce and treats. There are tons of samples to be had, local soaps, flowers, ice cream, cider, fruits and veggies! You can find awesome eats and help support the local agriculture at the same time. It is a great activity for a Saturday morning and would be great for anyone who considers themselves a foodie of any level!

C&O Canal
The C&O Canal is an awesome peaceful location that runs parallel with M Street in Washington DC. It’s a great location for a bike ride, walk, or jog. If you need a beautiful and non-crowded place to take a jog or just for a nice picnic and a walk you should check out the C&O Canal. This is a truly amazing location which runs for quite a long distance (184 miles between DC and Bethesda MD). The Canal does run parallel with M Street but is a much less busy alternative for walking, biking, or exploring. On one side of the trail you have the canal and the Potomac River on the other side makes a lovely backdrop. The lock houses remain even though the canal is no longer in operation. Grab some burgers and head out for a picnic and a little exploring, you won’t be disappointed. Continue reading »

Apr 242016
 

Homemade Cinnamon Play Dough

I’m sure you’ve heard by now that play dough is great for kids with sensory issues.  I happen to be the mom of a child with sensory issues and he absolutely loves to play with play dough.  As much as I love the smell of the store bought kind (and I really, really do), I tend to make my own.  The thing is when you make your own, you can get really creative with it. I have made dough in all sorts of colors, added sprinkles and my latest creation: Cinnamon Play Dough.  This recipe will yield 1 cup of all natural, edible cinnamon play dough and since May 5th is quickly approaching, it is a perfect Cinco de Mayo craft!

Here’s what you need:

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 1 Tablespoon cream of tartar
  • 2 Tablespoons cinnamon
  • 2 Tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 cup boiling hot water

Continue reading »

Apr 212016
 

Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars Recipe

I pack both of my boys a healthy lunch, but they are growing boys.  Growing tween boys to be exact.  In addition to eating me out of house and home, they both come off the bus hungry every single day.  Actually, scratch that. They come off the bus hangry every single day – especially my youngest!  When he’s hangry, he gives Oscar the Grouch a good run for his money.  Seriously.

Since they come running (literally) off the bus looking for food, I always have a snack ready for them.  Since peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are one of their favorites, they love it when they come home and I have peanut butter and jelly bars ready for them as a snack. They are easy to make and they are perfect for anyone who loves PB&J!

Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars4

Here’s what you need:

  • 1/2 Cup softened butter
  • 1 Cup peanut butter
  • 1/4 Cup granulated sugar
  • 3/4 Cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 1/2 Cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Continue reading »

Apr 192016
 

Disney's Best Hidden Bars and Restaurants

For some Disney diners, finding hidden bars and restaurants is all about finding a place to enjoy a meal that isn’t packed to the gills and for others it’s all about being in the know. If either is what you’re after, or if you just want to find another Disney World dining option that isn’t all everyone is talking about, these hidden restaurants and bars are all great options. From sit down to fast food to bars that have complete menus too, there is always something new to discover in your favorite park.

Boatwright’s, Port Orleans Riverside

Resort restaurants tend to go unnoticed if they don’t make it on any of the many top places to dine while at Disney World lists. and Boatwright’s is one of them. This restaurant dining hall can be found at the Riverside option of the resort, and is a great place for southern cooking with plenty of Cajun options that really pack in the flavor. One of the biggest complaints at Disney is that much of the food is bland in order to appeal to the masses, but you won’t find that a problem here. Decor-wise, the restaurant is unique, with a riverside, boat repair shack theme that makes it really feel like you are in the Deep South. Continue reading »

Apr 182016
 

Easy DIY Resuable Swiffer Pads

If you are anything like me, your Swiffer is your best friend. I use mine every single day of my life.  Between the dust that my forced hot air heat blows out in the winter, the dog and the messes my boys track in – I would be completely lost without my Swiffer.  Ok, maybe not lost, but my house would be in a constant state of messiness.  Since I use my Swiffer daily, the disposable pads that are needed to clean with them were adding up fast. Even when I bought in bulk, I was spending tons on the disposable pads and since my house gets so dirty, there was no way I could use them more than once.

But I recently came up with the solution for that problem.  I made my own reusable pads to use and love all the money I am saving not buying the disposable pads.  The reusable pads are really easy to make and you can use any cute fabric you like to make them.

Here’s what you need to make your reusable Swiffer pads:

  • Any flannel fabric
  • Any cotton fabric
  • Sewing pins (optional)
  • Sewing scissors
  • Measuring tape
  • Sewing machine

Continue reading »

Apr 142016
 

pampers logo

Hey moms and dads, do I have some good news for you! Pampers is offering a high value coupon that you can print at home for $2 off 1 pack of Pampers Easy Ups Training Pants.  Believe me, I’ve been there with my two boys and I know that the struggle is definitely real. Pampers Easy Ups Training Pants were an absolute lifesaver when I was going through the process with my two. Those and the sticker chart that I used to reward them when they had success on the potty!

Help make the potty training process easier and more affordable with this high-value coupon.  Here’s how to save:

  • You can clip the Pampers Easy Ups coupon at: http://www.coupons.com/brands/pampers-coupons/
  • You will need to open a coupons.com account if you do not already have one.
  • Then you can print, shop, and save – and keep an eye out for more Pampers coupons in the future!

Pampers coupon

Pampers Easy Ups have an absorbent core that holds 25% more than the other leading training pant (Huggies* Pull-Ups* Learning Designs*) and helps little ones stay dry and happy. Pampers Easy Ups* have fewer leaks than the other leading training pant (Huggies* Pull-Ups* Learning Designs*)  and up to 12 hours of leakage protection. Pampers Easy Ups Training Pants are sold in sizes 2T-5T and can be found at mass, discount and grocery stores where baby care products are sold.

For more information on Pampers diapers and pants, visit http://www.pampers.com or the brand’s social media channels on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube

 Sponsored Post  Comments Off on Get $2 off one pack off Pampers Easy Ups Training Pants – print and use! #PampersSavings #ad
Apr 122016
 

I make no bones about the fact that I’m a huge Pee-wee Herman fan.  Ever since I saw Pee-wee’s Big Adventure in the theater when I was a kid (yes, I know I just dated myself), I’ve been hooked.  I never missed an episode of Pee-wee’s Playhouse on Saturday mornings and I was so happy when I heard he was back in his new Netflix original movie, Pee-wee’s  Big Holiday!

In Peewee’s Big Holiday,  he breaks out of his comfy, small-town routine and learns how to live a little. A chance encounter with a mysterious stranger (Joe Manganiello) points Peewee toward his destiny — and an epic adventure.

My friends from Netflix sent my family an interactive Peewee Watch Kit, so that we could follow along on Peewee’s journey while we watched the movie.

netflix6

In the kit were numbered boxes and detailed instructions that told us when to open each one during the movie. Continue reading »

Apr 122016
 

By now you know that my hubby, Chris, and I have declared 2016 as the year of Robin and Chris. We decided that we were going to make this year all about trying new things and going on as many adventures as possible. The two of us had a lot of fun during the month of March & beginning of April and today I’m going to share some of the highlights.

Chris’s birthday was in January and I got him tickets to see Star Trek: The Ultimate Voyage live in Boston.  It was an orchestra that played music from the show while some scenes from Star Trek films and TV footage was simultaneously beamed in high definition to a 40-foot wide screen.

rue star trek2

Look closely at Chris’s ear…. Continue reading »

Apr 112016
 

Taking the Hahvahd Tour

I’m a Boston girl.  Always have been and always will be. It’s no secret that I love living here and whenever I meet someone who is not from around here, as soon as they find out where I’m from I inevitably get asked the same question: “Can you say park the car in the Harvard yard”?  Seriously – it happens every single time.  It fun to play along, though, because we know how cool our accent is around here and we love to bust out the Boston whenever we can!

For the record, there are no “R’s in that statement whatsoever.  It’s paaaahk thuh caaaaaah in the Haaaahvid yaaaaad.

Even though there are no R’s to be found, there is tons of IQ at Harvard and my husband Chris and I learned all about it when we took the Hahvahd Tour last weekend.

Harvard tour18

The award-winning tours of America’s most prestigious University are led by current Harvard students. Harvard student guides greet you right in Harvard Square. which is where the tour leaves from. The tour is scripted to be an entertaining, theatrical experience – you’ll have fun learning about Harvard! Continue reading »

Apr 102016
 

Hot Air Cold Air Science Experiment

Both of my boys are SO into STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math education) with a huge emphasis on the science part.   It’s funny because I hated Science class when I was in school.  Hated it! Now that I am an adult I have a whole new appreciation for it and am trying to catch up with a lot of what I missed while I was sleeping in class all those years ago.  Lucky for me, my boys love all things science related and get so excited when we do science experiments at home. This hot air/cold air experiment was a lot of fun to do with the kids and the results are absolutely fascinating.

Here’s what you need:

  • Two containers
  • Empty drink bottle
  • Large balloon
  • Ice cubes
  • Hot and cold water

**Note, there is no need for the stick, I just didn’t want my hands blocking your view. Continue reading »

Apr 062016
 

Recently I’ve teamed up with Jaclyn Zukerman, a successful Boston based entrepreneur. In addition to her amazing podcast “Social Scene with JZ” in which she has interviewed all sorts of great people ranging from start-ups to celebrities, she runs her own business – JZ Social Enterprises. JZ Social Enterprises offers marketing/promotions to clients from luxury to individual talent to startups. This is where she helps build partnerships, grow their following and online promotions and more. Her goal is to help showcase what people do through her podcasts, events and social media outlets.

This week on the “Social Scene with JZ” Jackie will be talking with Brandon Gilson, founder of The Best Seats.

thenbestseats

The Best Seats is an elite entertainment concierge service based in Boston, Massachusetts. They offer luxurious concierge services, travel packages and unique lifestyle experiences for corporations and individuals across the nation.  Through The Best Seats you can get VIP tickets and packages to any sporting and lifestyle event worldwide, while incorporating an unforgettable experience that will last a lifetime. Continue reading »

Apr 052016
 

The latest and greastest from Hasbro for Tween Boys

Has the Yo-Kai Watch craze hit your house yet?  It hit here right around Christmas time and has been going strong ever since.  Each of my boys got the Yo-Kai Watch 3DS game for Christmas and when we found out there were a line of Yo-Kai Watch products out there, my kids were thrilled.

Now that my boys are getting older (they are 8 & 11), finding toys they like is getting to be a bit of a challenge.  My little guy still loves toys, but his tween bother is too cool for a lot of things these days.  Luckily Hasbro has toys for every age group covered and here are a few of their latest and greatest toys for tween boys.

Yo-kai Watch Season 1 Watch

Experience the world of Yo-kai Watch with the Yo-kai Watch and Medals (watch sold with 2 exclusive medals, watch and additional medals each sold separately, subject to availability). Fans can imagine summoning Yo-kai characters, and when used with the medals, the Yo-kai watch plays sounds, music, and phrases. Insert one of the collectible medals displaying a Yo-kai into the watch to hear the character’s name, tribe song and more sounds. The Yo-kai watch recognizes over 100 collectible medals planned to be released through December 1, 2016. (Dates and number of medals subject to change. Check yokaiwatch.hasbro.com for planned release dates. Website not available in all languages or markets. Watch and medals each sold separately and subject to store availability.) The Yo-kai watch toy comes with 2 exclusive medals and batteries. Kids can get started exploring the wacky world of the Yo-kai with the Yo-kai Watch! Continue reading »

Apr 042016
 

NewAir water dispenser review
Small-Disclosure

Keeping hydrated is important and my doctor requested that I drink at least 10-12 glasses of water a day. Also you good people who work out regularly, know how important keeping hydrated is. If you are like me, you don’t like drinking from the tap. And all those water bottles aren’t good for the environment. Not to mention having lots of them in my car or the grandkids bedrooms!

I was looking into a solution, when I was given the opportunity from Masshole Mommy to review a new water dispenser from the NewAir Company. I checked out their website at http://www.newair.com.

After looking at several models I, decided on model WAT40 in black. This model is also available in white. I picked the black to match my other appliances. What else drew me to this unit was that the size was perfect and it would fit at the end of my cabinets and blend in well. But what really got me excited was the fact that the water bottle was hidden in the base of the unit. The NewAir WAT40 is a great convenient way to get all the fresh clean water you want. As I said the biggest selling point for me was that the large water bottle is hidden away in the base of the unit. All you do in open the cabinet in the front, remove the cap from the bottle and put in the pump nozzle, push it down to the bottom of the bottle, slide the bottle into the unit and close the door. It is that easy! No spills or lifting heavy bottles. The water is then pumped into stainless steel tanks. Being stainless steel, the tanks are 100% BPA free. Continue reading »

Apr 032016
 

Must See Tourist Spots in Washington DC

Traveling to Washington DC without a plan can be a little overwhelming. There are so many amazing things to see and experience in Washington DC that you don’t want to pass up the opportunity while visiting! Here are a list of some must see tourist spots in Washington DC to help you plan your next trip! From fun and family oriented to exciting and educational there is a little bit of something for everyone! If you plan ahead you can even get combo pricing on some of these locations as well as discounted tickets. I love taking a few minutes to plan before we go so that I will have a little bit of background and information before we arrive. This helps keep us on track and organized so we don’t waste minute of exploring time! Continue reading »

Mar 312016
 

Time Saving Cleaning Hacks

This review was made possible by iConnect and Mr. Clean.  I was provided compensation to facilitate this post, but all opinions stated are my 100% mine.

Okay, let’s be very real right from the start: Cleaning Hacks are amazing. They save me time, effort, and they get me done with the cleaning faster. Who doesn’t love to be done cleaning faster?!? Anyone? I think just to be safe I am going to assume that EVERYONE wants to be done cleaning faster and proceed with the list of cleaning hacks!

Break It Down

One of the best cleaning hacks out there is to divide up the cleaning chores. Not only does this make life so much easier and organized but it makes you feel better about the whole cleaning process. There is never going to be a time when I want to give up an ENTIRE day to get everything done at once so work it out however it suits your schedule but definitely break it down. Cleaning one room or one floor or just completing one task everyday will make your whole process easier and more in the long run, more efficient too! Continue reading »

Mar 282016
 

If you follow along here regularly, you probably already know that I have a five sisters in law who have had eight babies between them within the past five years. I miss not having little ones around the house and love that my sisters in law keep having babies so that I can get my fix on a pretty regular basis. In fact, my newest niece is only six weeks old and I was so happy when I got to meet her last weekend.  She lives two hours away in Connecticut, so I don’t see her, her big brother or big sister as much as I wish I could, but I take what I can get.

My boys are 8 & 11 now, so there aren’t as many toys around my house as their used to be, but back when they were smaller they had more toys that any of us knew what to do with.  My mom would shower them with toys every time she saw them, so you can only imagine the amount of toy clutter we had in our house.

Small-Disclosure

If you are looking for some really cool educational toys and you are also tired of the clutter, you’ll want to check out Le Bundle. Le Bundle is a personalized toy rental subscription that supports early learning for children 6 months to 4 years of age.  They offer a unique variety of educational toys that you normally won’t find at most common retailers.

lebundle1

I love that Le Bundle is personalized, meaning that parents have the freedom to choose the toys they want. But, if you want the surprise factor they also send expertly recommended toys that are appropriate for your child’s age. Bundles are shipped the same day that you place your order. Continue reading »

Mar 272016
 

bubblegum cupcakes Recipe

In our circle it seems that the majority of our friends and family have summer birthdays, which means that come April birthday party season is in full swing.  Whether it’s for a party we’re hosting (for the boys) or a party that we get invited to – cupcakes are always my go-to recipe.  They are easy to make (for the most part) and travel well when it’s a party that we’re going to at someone else’s house. These Bubblegum Cupcakes are always a crowd pleaser and I make them as often as possible.  This recipe makes 14 cupcakes and takes 50 minutes start to finish, so you can whip them up in a jiffy.

Here’s what you need to make your Bubblegum Cupcakes:

  • 1 1/2 Cups all purpose flour
  • 2/3 Cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 stick softened salted butter
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 tablespoons vanilla
  • 1/2 Cup (any %) milk
  • 1 tablespoon Lorann bubblegum flavoring
  • Blue food coloring

Continue reading »

Mar 232016
 

If you know me in real life, you know I am never seen in public without a bracelet.  Aside from my “signature” red eyeglasses, bracelets are my favorite way to accessorize. While I am madly in love with silver bracelets from a very popular Rhode Island based brand, they don’t have much in the way of color if you know what I’m sayin’.  I still own twenty something of them, but I do like to add a pop of color to my wrist when I wear them.

Cue JVTV the Jeweler!

JVTV the Jeweler designs luxury bracelets for both men and women. Jeff and Teresa are JVTV the Jeweler and they just recently launched their Boston based (yay Boston) business. Teresa is a fashion blogger and her industry knowledge helps come up with new designs. Jeff works in IT, so design and attention to detail are his forte. Jeff & Teresa use only the highest quality materials and all items are handmade by them.

I can personally attest to the quality of a bracelet from JVTV the Jeweler.  I received this lovely ping glass beaded bracelet last week and have worn it every day since.

bracelet2

As soon as I opened the package I could clearly see how much detail went into making the bracelet. Continue reading »

Mar 222016
 

Recently I’ve teamed up with Jaclyn Zukerman, a successful Boston based entrepreneur. In addition to her amazing podcast “Social Scene with JZ” in which she has interviewed all sorts of great people ranging from start-ups to celebrities, she runs her own business – JZ Social Enterprises. JZ Social Enterprises offers marketing/promotions to clients from luxury to individual talent to startups. This is where she helps build partnerships, grow their following and online promotions and more. Her goal is to help showcase what people do through her podcasts, events and social media outlets.

getscene1

Since her business is growing like wildfire, she’s starting something new and exciting.  She’s launching #GETSCENE Magazine! Here’s what Editor in Chief, Jaclyn Zukerman has to say about her new venture: Continue reading »

Mar 212016
 

Why Legos are Great for Kids

Everyone has encountered Legos at one time or another. If you’ve had kids that love them, hate them, or you’ve stepped on one with your bare foot and experienced the most painful three minutes of your entire life, you know that Legos can be both a blessing and a curse! The good news is that Legos are an obsession you can feel good about encouraging! Legos help kids in a bunch of different ways without them even knowing, which is great for stubborn little ones!

Legos Develop Creative Thinking

Without having to sit them down and encourage them to complete complex problems or puzzles, Legos are able to develop creative thinking skills in children and young adults. This is a skill that can really pay off down the road, later in life. Creative problem solving comes with the territory when building anything with Legos. Sure, there are instructions and pictures and YouTube tutorials, but in the end you really have to be able to see what you want to build and find a way to make it happen. These trial and error experiments and forward thinking puzzles can really help kids and teens learn how to solve problems creatively. The best part about all of this is that you don’t have to fight with them, they’re learning without even realizing! Continue reading »