How to Develop a Back to School Bedtime Routine

One of the hardest things for me to do as a single mom is getting my two girls ready for school!  I am not kidding —  fighting to get them out of bed, fighting them to get dressed,  yelling at them to stay focused, and to quit fighting over clothes!  This is why this year I decided to come up with a PLAN to make things easier – a back to school bedtime routine. #kidgoals

It’s a well know fact that children need routine in their daily lives – they thrive in a structured environment.  Giving a child a routine to follow actually teaches them how to be in control of their emotions and their environment.  A good routine helps children feel secure – and a great bedtime routine is a great way to start (at any age).

Establish a set bedtime.   The amount of sleep a child needs depends on several factors,  including age of the child.  Sleep is important for their developing brains and bodies –> so here is a handy reference chart to go by.

wp-image-2050588837

This chart was first posted by Wilson Elementary School of Kenosha, WI.

Give a bedtime warning to start the wind down process.  I know my girls do well when I give them a warning that bedtime is approaching.  I always let them know an hour before hand, so they can start their bedtime routine.

Turn off the technology.  Studies have shown that by turning off electronics an hour before bedtime helps you fall asleep easier and faster.

Use books and music to help relax children before bed.  Using books and music before bed can help your children relax.  This is also a wonderful bonding time for parents and children.  It can also help strengthen their reading and other learning skills as well.  Bonus.  Check out our kid book reviews for some book suggestions.

Create a tasks checklist for children to use.  We created this laminated task list together.  The girls can consult this chart before bedtime, and cross off things as they complete them.   I think it’s a wonderful way to help the girls take initiative and help in the bedtime process.

Take baths at night.  I prefer giving my girls their baths at night.  I have found that it not only saves time in the mornings, but it helps relax them before bed.  It also gives them a last minute “play session”.  I always have lavender bubble bath, lotion, or bath fizzes on hand for the nights they are especially wound up!  Check out our other bath time posts for fun ideas.

Lay out your clothes and bags the night before.  Save yourself some time and effort in the morning by having the kids pick out their outfits for the next day.  I also check the weather at this time.

One of my favorite stores to find the perfect school clothes is Gymboree.  They provide quality, coordinated outfits for every occasion – including the first day of school.  I love how their clothes are super comfy, and mix and match perfectly.  This is a plus on my list because the girls wear the same size, so this keeps them from fighting over clothes.  Everything just mixes and matches perfectly!

Are you ready to get a back to school bedtime routine established? Give these tips a try and see how they can help your child get their best sleep – and start this school year off right!

On Cordelia  Heather Grey Twofer Dress Sparkle Navy Cardigan | Navy Sequin Strip LeggingsRainbow Glitter Sparkle Star Clips | Star Ankle SocksSilver Sparkle BootsOn Althea – Heather Grey Peplum Tunic | Girls Rocket Pink Eyelash LeggingsSparkle Navy Cardigan| Slim Bow Headband | Silver Leopard Sparkle SocksSilver Glitter High Tops


What are some of your goals, or your kids goals for the upcoming school year?  What are some of your favorite outfits on the Gymboree website

Gymboree was gracious enough to offer a giveaway of a $50 giftcard to one lucky winner.

Click Here to Enter

The giveaway ends September 1st, 2017 at 11:59 p.m. CST.  The giveaway is open to US residents, age 18+, only.  You will contacted by email,  and have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen.  Good Luck!

… and come check out our OTHER giveaways HERE

This post was Sponsored by Gymboree.  All opinions about the clothing are my own.  It was a pleasure working with such a great company, thank you!  Stay up to date with Janie and Jack’s newest products and sales on Facebook , Instagram, and Twitter!

Foward to Fall with Janie and Jack

I can’t believe that it’s already the end of summer!  The mornings and evenings have already started to become cooler here in Kansas — so  I’ve started putting away the girls summer clothes, and pulling out their Fall fashions.

I love Fall because the outfits you can create are endless.  One of my favorite shops for finding classy, sophisticated, and adorable clothing is Janie and Jack.  They offer classic children’s clothing rich in fabric, design, and detail for girls and boys up to size 12 online, and up to size 6 in shops.

Their latest Fall Collection is so adorable!  I love how Janie and Jack offers classically modern clothing that can be mixed and matched to create many different looks.  My girls love dressing up (even for school), and love sharing clothes… this is one of the reasons that I adore this store.   From dressy to play wear — they will help you dress your little one(s) in perfectly put together fall styles that will turn life’s smallest moments into treasures!

Here is a photo shoot that we did at the park.  The girls really wanted to feed the ducks this weekend.  Enjoy 🙂

wp-image-88854227

On Althea Knit Sweater Dress | Khaki Quilted Peplum Jacket| Bridle Headband | Riding Boots On Cordelia Floral Dress | Aqua Blue Quilted Jacket | Candy Red Barrettes | Riding Boots

wp-image-1095535537

wp-image-917446753

What are you looking forward to wearing this fall?  Check out the Janie and Jack’s Fall Collection, and let me know what some of your favorite pieces are…

This post was Sponsored by Janie and Jack.  All opinions about the clothing are my own.  It was a pleasure working with such a great company, thank you!  Stay up to date with Janie and Jack’s newest products and sales on Facebook , Instagram, and Twitter!

 

StarKist is perfect for Back to School Lunches

I don’t know about your kids, but mine really love tuna!  StarKist is by far our favorite brand.   They offer a variety of flavors, and packaging to fit your needs.

wp-image-1485828273

#ShareStarKistSweeps #StarKist100

We really love the tuna pouches because they offer so many flavors!  I love that they are easy to throw in the kids lunch boxes for a quick healthy meal — add cheese, crackers, a few cucumbers, juice — and Woola!  

#ShareStarKistSweeps #StarKist100

FUN FACT!  Did you know that by consuming tuna regularly, you can ensure that you are active, energetic, and healthy.  It also is a very powerful antioxidant and immune system-stimulating food source.  Who doesn’t want this for their kids!?!


Share StarKist Sweepstakes

Starkist is asking everyone to come join the fun!  Take photos or videos of nearly anything related to Starkist:  products, advertisements, testimonials, and more.  If you enter to win you could win a $10,000 grand prize or one of four weekly prizes.  Ends August 17th, and you can enter once a week!  #ShareStarKistSweeps #StarKist100

Click here to enter this amazing sweepstake!

 

 

Review of Lily’s Driftwood Bay: Season 1 

** Disclosure:  I received product (s) for free, in exchange for my honest review.  I only recommend products I’ve used personally, and believe will be a good fit for consumers.  This post contains affiliate links. **

Welcome to Lily’s Driftwood Bay

Lily is a six years old who lives with her dad and her best friend, who is a seagull named Gull, in a little hut on the beach. Across the way is Driftwood Bay, a special island that exists in Lily’s imagination.

Every day the sea washes up a new treasure which sparks Lily’s imagination about what might be happening on Driftwood Bay.  Join Lily and her friends, Salty Dog, Bull, Nonna, Hatsie, Wee Rabbit, and Lord Stag as they sail to Driftwood Bay where wonderful adventures await!

Along with each adventure is a valuable lesson learned in each story — from learning to tell the truth, to saying sorry, to asking for help. Embark on new adventures with Lily and friends as they travel to Driftwood Bay!

Our Review:  Being a Jim Jensen fan, I was really looking forward to reviewing this series; and I was not disappointed!  My four year old Cora really loves this show.  I had a great time watching it with her.  I really loved how the show was all about Lily taking everyday items she finds on the beach, and creating an imaginary world with them.  All the characters are very lovable – and the lessons learned are wonderful!  I would recommend this series for kids ages 2 -7.

You can buy Lily’s Driftwood Bay: Season 1 on Amazon

Connect with NCircle: Don’t forget to like NCircle Entertainment on Facebook, follow them on TwitterInstagram, and Pinterest, and subscribe to their You Tube Channel for all the latest news and promotions.

NCircle is giving (1) lucky reader this DVD!

Click HERE to ENTER the Giveaway

 The giveaway ends September 1st, 2017 at 11:59 p.m. CST.  The giveaway is open to US residents, age 18+, only.  You will contacted by email,  and have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen.  Good Luck!

Check out our OTHER giveaways HERE

Review of The Day Henry Met…? Season 1

** Disclosure:  I received product (s) for free, in exchange for my honest review.  I only recommend products I’ve used personally, and believe will be a good fit for consumers.  This post contains affiliate links. **

Every day Henry meets something new! I wonder what Henry’s going to meet today? Henry is a 4-year-old boy who always wants to learn and find out more. In each episode, Henry has a friendly chat with whatever he meets and discovers something new… Hello, Whale. How do you stay under water for so long? Hello, Car. What makes you go so fast? Hello, Moon. Why do you only come out at night? No matter what Henry meets, they re always delighted to talk, laugh and share their amazing world with him. After finding out so many amazing things about his new friends, Henry lets his imagination run wild and imagines himself… As a knight rescuing the missing sword… As a singer performing in a band… As a deep sea diver swimming along sea creatures… As a fireman rescuing others… As an astronaut flying to the moon… And more!

Our Review:  This series does a really good job at keeping your interest.  You ask yourself, “I wonder who Henry will meet today!?”  Henry is a 4 year old boy who turns ordinary objects into an adventure with his imagination.  My daughter Allie, who is almost 6, really loved this series.  Henry has such a wide variety of adventures that kept my girls very entertained.

You can buy The Day Henry Met…? Season 1 on Amazon

Connect with NCircle: Don’t forget to like NCircle Entertainment on Facebook, follow them on TwitterInstagram, and Pinterest, and subscribe to their You Tube Channel for all the latest news and promotions.


 NCircle is giving (1) lucky reader this DVD!

Click HERE to ENTER the Giveaway

The giveaway ends September 1st, 2017 at 11:59 p.m. CST.  The giveaway is open to US residents, age 18+, only.  You will contacted by email,  and have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen.  Good Luck!

Check out our OTHER giveaways HERE

Review of  The Little Prince: The New Mission 

** Disclosure:  I received product (s) for free, in exchange for my honest review.  I only recommend products I’ve used personally, and believe will be a good fit for consumers.  This post contains affiliate links. **

When we last saw the Little Prince, he had defeated the Snake by trapping him in his sketchbook. All is calm in the galaxy once again. Life on B612 has resumed to normal. Rose, Fox, and the Little Prince are living peacefully, maybe too peacefully….Then one night, Rose hears the Snake telling her that she has a home planet with a family and it sounds like they are in danger. Can this be true? Can there be a Planet of the Roses?

Rose asks the Little Prince to find her planet and fast. The Little Prince promises Rose that he will go look for her Planet of the Roses. He asks Fox to keep an eye on Rose as he flies off on his plane. The Little Prince promises he will return soon to trim the baobabs on B612. During his quest to find the Planet of the Roses, the Little Prince encounters four new characters: the hunter, the geographer, the king, and the businessman. As he meets each one, they tell him that Rose’s planet is in another galaxy far beyond interstellar space and offer to help him find the planet.

Meanwhile, back on B612, the baobabs continue to grow, Rose and Fox continue to argue, and then the Snake is freed from the sketchbook! Upon the Little Prince’s return to B612 he learns of Snake’s escape and realizes he must set off on a new mission to fight his worst enemy again. Will he succeed? Will he ever find the Planet of the Roses? Embark on a new mission with Little Prince and friends!

You can buy The Little Prince: The New Mission DVD on Amazon


Our Review:  Both the girls really loved this movie!  They watched the entire movie kriss kross applesauce — eagerly watching every twist and turn in the movie.  We can’t wait to see the next Mission.  We love the Little Prince.

We were first introduced to the Little Prince on Netflix.  We really loved this family movie, so we were looking forward to reviewing this spin off!  It did not disappoint us!  I provided a trailer for the “Little Prince” down below.

I couldn’t find a trailer for “The New Mission” or I would have provided that for you… BUT trust me, it is wonderful!
Connect with NCircleDon’t forget to like NCircle Entertainment on Facebook, follow them on TwitterInstagram, and Pinterest, and subscribe to their You Tube Channel for all the latest news and promotions.

NCircle is giving (1) lucky reader this DVD! 

Click HERE to ENTER the Giveaway

The giveaway ends September 1st, 2017 at 11:59 p.m. CST.  The giveaway is open to US residents, age 18+, only.  You will contacted by email,  and have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen.  Good Luck!

Check out our OTHER giveaways HERE

July 2017 FitSnack Unboxing

This post contains affiliate links. If you shop from my blog, I may be compensated for clicks or purchases that you make.


20170801_142014

Eating healthy is always a challenge in our house!  Being a working single mom, I’m lucky to make it to the grocery store — and when I do it’s the 10 minute before I pick up the kids.  Talk about speed shopping  — and hoping for the best when it comes to healthy eating!  Let’s just say, I don’t always make the wisest decisions.

This is why I am in love with this box!  This month was my favorite so far!  I loved almost everything in it!  This subscription box is wonderful because it gives me the opportunity to try healthy products, that I normally wouldn’t.  My family get’s the opportunity to try items out, and we can add them to the YAAY this ROCKS! or  the we are never going to eat or talk about this product ever again list!

I think FitSnack has helped me become more health conscience and knowledgeable on what I put in our mouths.  I would recommend it to everyone!

Here is a little information about the FitSnack

Sisters Anita and Rose Muniz are the duo behind Fit Snack. They realized that taking the leap to live a healthier life is not always easy.  The grocery store is lined with high sugar, over processed foods, not everyone has access to Sprouts or Whole Foods and it’s really hard to know what new healthy snacks you will like without tasting them. The Fit Snack duo decided that they would curate an assorted box every month and on top of that, include at home workouts and bonuses like free music downloads.

Each Fit Snack Box comes with 7-10 full-size and deluxe sample items, plus free workout and recipe cards.  This is a $32+ in guaranteed value.

When selecting products to include in the box, they use the Fit Snack “Perfect 10″.  Put simply, they look for snacks that fall into one or more of these categories: Nutrient Dense (high in protein, complex carbs, low sugar index), Consciously Made (GMO free, organic production, sustainably farmed), and Diversified Energy (gluten free, clean eating, paleo, raw).

Fit Snack offers several different subscription plans including 1-month, 3-month, 6-month, and annual subscription options. Monthly box prices start at $15.00 (+ $5 S/H) and provide double that value within each box.

This box is a great monthly reminder to eat healthy, and best of all — it’s delivered right to your door.  Try it out yourself and order your own!


Here is what was in the box for July!

Hippea Organic Chickpea Puffs:  HIPPEAS organic chickpea puffs are gluten-free, vegan, non-GMO and packed with fiber and protein.  Far out Fajita has a fiery stash of chili, paprika, cumin, and good vibes1  #GivePeasAChance

I really loved these puffs.  They reminded me of Cheetos… wonderful puffy goodness.  I really love chickpeas, so this was a hit for me!  I also love the spicey kick the fajita flavor had.  🙂

20170801_141946

Take5:  Take 5 is a 2oz relaxation shot designed to keep you calm and focused.  Non-drowsy, drug-free, and reduces stress.

20170801_141900

Fawen Drinkable Soup:  Fawen Ready-To-Drink Soup is a delcious boost of plant-based superfood to fuel an active lifestyle, anytime, anywhere!  Organic, hydrating, and clean – drink Fawen daily to fuel the things you love!

This month they are letting us try Broccoli and Cauliflower.  These soups are a great way to add some fuel to your day!

20170801_141834

Top Bit:  TopBit is a nutritional food topping packed with 8g of protein, omega 3-6-9, antioxidants, and all 9 essential amino acids.  They are made from 100% plant-based real food ingredients.  Mixed Berry and Savory Herb flavors add great taste and nutrients to any of your favorite foods.

20170801_141808

Amazi Plantain Chips:  Amazi is a woman-owned, healthy snack company revolutionizing the plantain, importing and selling organic dried and roasted plantain chips from Uganda. #roastednotfried

These chips are hard, but have a wonderful taste.

20170801_141740

Field Trip Jerky:  This jerky is dried and seasoned with all natural ingredients. “A traditional cut of jerky, done right.”  It has Higher protein per ounce, less sodium, and less sugar.  Made with gluten free reduced sodium soy sauce. All products contain less than 5 ppm of wheat.

I love the jerky we got in the box this month!  What a wonderful snack idea.

20170801_141715

Wise Popcorn 30% Reduced Fat Sea Salt:  Wise® the classic American snack popcorn sea salt Wise Choice® This snacks is not only uncommonly good but to banish snacking guilt once and for all. You’ve got good taste! The bag you’re holding is bursting with mouthwatering wise popcorn. Lightly air-popped. Wise is packed with whole grain, gluten free goodness that’s insanely delicious.

This popcorn is the bomb!  Trust me… the bomb!

20170801_141653

Nutty Goodness:  A mouth-watering fusion of nature’s most delicious fruits and nuts.. with absolutely nothing else.  Certified organic, gluten-free, non-GMO, vegan and Kosher!  They offer Pineapple Paradiso:  A sub-tropical fusion of nuts and pineapple AND Nana Rama:  Inspired by Nana’s legendary banana nut bread.

We got to try Nana Rama:  Inspired by Nana’s legendary banana nut bread.  I really loved this snack… and it really tastes like banana bread!

20170801_141629

Chops Beef Jerky:   When looking to loose weight, lean out, gain muscle or sustain hunger, lean meat is one of the best snacks you can choose.

This jerky is so moist and tender!  I loved it!  I think the was my all time favorite product in the box this month.

20170801_141603

Buff Bake, Protein Cookie, White Chocolate Peanut Butter:  A high protein (16g) and fiber cookie with no artificial ingredients.  Gluten free, NO sugar alcohols. NO artificial sweeteners, preservatives, or flavors.

The cookie has a great flavor, but the texture was weird to me.  It was a little bit dry and dense.

20170801_141531

Nutiva:  Classic Hazelnut Spread – Enjoy Nutiva’s organic and gluten-free classic hazelnut spread.  Nutiva has 40% less sugar than the leading brand and 450mg of Omega 3 began, delicious and dairy free.

We received a jar of this last month, but we loved it!  So we are happy we got some more.  I took these bad boys to work with me for some snacky goodness!  🙂

20170801_141459

The July Box also came with a Flat Belly Workout session created by a trainer.


Click here to order your FitSnack Box

Find FitSnack on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter