Tuesday, June 30, 2015

FREE Lowe's Build and Grow: Black Widow's Sky Cycle

SIGN UP NOW!!! for the next Lowe's Build and Grow Clinic. They are doing a super hero theme this summer and you missed out on Iron Man and Captain America, but this next one on July 11, 2015 is for the Black Widow Sky Cycle. Sign up quick! These fill up fast. My son is very excited about this theme.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Easy Taco Mac - Kid Favorite!!!

Do you have some leftover taco meat?

You can easily use up your leftover taco meat by adding it to your kids favorite box of macaroni and cheese with some salsa. Be sure to use my Clean Eating Taco Seasoning recipe, even if your box macaroni isn't so clean. :)

1 box of macaroni and cheese (made per package)
1/2 C cooked taco meat
1/2 C salsa

Just stir in your leftover taco meat and some salsa in to you cooked macaroni & cheese.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Rare People......

I decided I wanted to make up some of my own friendship quote memes to share with friend this summer. I want them to know I am thinking of them and that I love them. I wanted to them to be more meaningful than just pasting in ones that someone else has already made up, so I am making up my own with pictures I have taken.

This is the view from the Vista House of the Crown Point of the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area in Oregon.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

FREE Admission at Walker Art Center on Thursday Nights

Thursdays from 5-9pm is FREE admission as part of Target Free Nights at the Walker Art Center. If Thursday nights don't work, they also have FREE admission on the first Saturday of every month. Also, the Sculpture Garden and Conservatory are always FREE!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

#ad DIY 18" Doll Nightgown Kit

My Thoughts:

I love that this DADM 18" Doll Nightgown Kit comes with everything you need to complete this project. My 9 year old daughter started hand sewing this winter and has been making little projects for her dolls and stuffed animals and was very excited to try a larger project. The instructions are simple and easy to follow. My daughter easily made this on her own with only some minor verbal instructions from me. It comes with a pattern that kids have to cut out and a piece of fabric. The pattern is basically a long rectangle with two rectangles on the top for the sleeves, so there is no curves to cut around, just simple straight cuts. The fabric has finished edges which helps make it have a more finished look without the child having to hem anything.

My daughter has saved the pattern and plans to look for some remnants at JoAnn's so that she can create a t-shirt for her American Girl dolls by shortening the length of the gown to shirt length. She wants to now get the leopard print kit to make a top and pants for one of her dolls.

My daughter found it easier to sew the pieces when she had it on her doll that just holding the pieces in her hands when she got to the top of the arms and shoulders so that she knew how far she should sew in so she had enough room for the head to go in and out of.

I was given this product to review for free or a discount. No monetary compensation was received. All thoughts, opinions and photographs are my own.

Wordless Wednesday: Minneopa State Park

Get your MN State PaPark sticker. I am going to show you some pretty cool places inside MN State Parks that you are going to want to go see!

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

FREE Google Maker Camp (July 6-Aug 14th)

We have not had the opportunity to participate in this camp, but I have in the back of my mind to host a Maker Camp. It's not too late to sign up to be a host of a physical location of a Maker Camp. Personally, I think this would be an awesome program for libraries to incorporate in to their summer library programming. There are MANY physical locations already signed up, so check to see if there is one near you, but if not consider hosting your own Maker Camp.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Get Up & Go Protein Chocolate PB2 Banana & Coffee Smoothie

Get Up and Go Protein Chocolate PB2 Banana Smoothie
1 C cold coffee
1/2 C unsweetened almond milk (or milk of choice)
1 banana
1 scoop chocolate protein powder
1 T PB2


  • Put all ingredients in a blender or smoothie maker in the way listed from top to bottom, so that the liquids are by the blender piece.
  • Blend until smooth
  • Enjoy!

Friday, June 19, 2015

#ad Review: Space Scouts Kids Subscription Service

Are your kids complaining of summer boredom yet?

Do you want to provide your children with continued learning this summer to help prevent summer slide?

Then you may want to check out Space Scouts Subscription Service, which is geared towards school-age children. They are the same company that also brought you Animals Trackers, which is a subscription program geared towards the preschool-age.

This top photo shows everything that is included in the 1st 2 MONTHS! I have the packages separated below so you can see what to expect each month. Each month will have some similar things (puzzle cards, constellation cards, and worksheets) that they can continue to collect and learn about new items each month.

This one is the first month. It includes our solar system map, a metal lunchbox for storing everything in neat;y and wiki stix to do an activity project with. The rest of the items are the ones I mentioned above that are similar each month.

I know this picture says you get it for $10 a week if you order by May 31st, but they still have that special pricing on their website.

The first month will arrive in a box because of the size of the lunch box, but after that you will get packages like this one filled with your items.

This is the second month. In addition to the similar items listed above, it also includes a claw grabber (for moon rock collection or just annoying your siblings), space scout magnets and plastic figurines of astronauts.

I had my kids share this package, which they have learned to do with minimal squabbles about who gets to do what. I think it helped that I got 2 months at once.

From what I can see by what they sent me in each package, I think the $10/week price tag is well worth the value of the items in them and the knowledge that they are acquiring. Also, my kids really enjoyed this program. Plus, I like to have a break from planning out projects and activities for them.

I was sent the above items to review on this blog. No monetary compensation was received. All thoughts, opinions and photographs belong to this blog.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

FREE Admission at the Minnesota Sculpture Garden on Thursdays

Free Thursdays all day: November through March
Free every third Thursday of the month after 4:30 p.m.: April through October

Other ways to get free admission any time --
* Children 12 & under are always free
* University of Minnesota Students are always free

From now until August 30th, they are having an exhibit of Nature Art with Lego Bricks. We have it on our summer bucket list to go to the arboretum specifically so we can check this out. Of course the rest of the arboretum is pretty awesome as well.


Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Wordless Wednesday: Minnehaha Falls Regional Park

If you are in the Twin Cities area, a visit to Minnehaha Fall Regional Park is always a nice addition to your plans. You will have to pay to park, but that fee is nominal.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

FREE Captain America Motorcycle at Lowe's Build & Grow

SIGN UP NOW!!! for the next Lowe's Build & Grow Clinic. They are doing a super hero theme this summer and you missed out on Iron Man, but don't miss out on Captain America!

Monday, June 15, 2015

Dinosaur Pancakes

Just a few ideas to make your ordinary pancakes a little more interesting for your kids. I just put the pancake mix in a plastic baggie and snipped of a corner so that I could draw out my dinosaurs. We usually have whip cream and chocolate chips around, so I embellished my creations with those. The kids loved them, especially my dino loving son.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Family Fun Tuesdays!!! At Caponi Art Park in Eagan, MN

Are you looking for free or low-cost things to do in the Twin Cities? Be sure to check out the Caponi Art Park in Eagan, MN (just a short drive from the MOA). Go on a Tuesday morning and you can check out their Family Fun Tuesdays!!! Every Tuesday, June - August, they have a ticket-FREE event at 10am. They do suggest a donation of $4 a person. 

Get outside and enjoy performing arts while enjoying nature at the same time. It's a win-win situation. We have been there for a few events, including the puppet show that is pictured below. 

I was looking over our schedule and the events listed and trying to figure out 1 or 2 that we can make it to. 

Thursday, June 11, 2015

FREE MN State Park Admission THIS SATURDAY!!!!

This Saturday for National Get Outdoors Day, you can get in free to all of the Minnesota State Parks. No vehicle admission sticker is required (normally it is $5).

PLUS........many of the state parks have events planned to help you enjoy your time there this weekend! Check out the list of events HERE , as well as a list of state parks that loan our equipment for FREE including birding kids, GPS kits, and Kids Discovery kits and find your a state park to go to on this MN State Park Map.

For those that live near me - consider these events at these state parks within an hour drive:

  • Minneopa State Park (Mankato) - MN Zoomobile
  • Fort Snelling State Park (St. Paul) - Naturalist Led Nature Hike
  • Afton State Park (Hastings) - 2 EVENTS!! Archery in the Park AND Cook! (learn to build a fire and cook in cast iron)
  • ALSO, check out these FREE Paddle the Minnesota River locations (half have canoes you can use!) This is also on Saturday!

FREE Paddling Events this Weekend on the Minnesota River

Check out the list of sites participating in the MN DNR Paddle the Minnesota River in the Day event. 

This is a FREE event!

Each of the public paddles in the list have different requirements in regards to skill level or if canoes are provided or if you need to bring your own. Lengths of time/distance are provided for each one, as well as contact info to register. There are 6 public paddles and half of them have canoes available to use. So, get registered right away to see if there is one available if you need it.

Review: Power Rangers Dino Charge Sandals #PowerRangersDinoChargeShoes

My Thoughts:

Here are the things I like about these Power Rangers Dino Charge sandals. I like the thick fabric straps on it and the thick foam sole. These make them pretty comfortable sandals for my 5 year old. He also loves the design of the Power Ranger Dino Charge. This type of flip flop they make in both a red and a blue. The flip flop was the only footwear they make that are in a youth size, if you are looking for a child size (12 & smaller) then there are a variety of clogs to choose from as well as strapped flip flops.

Honestly, I have procrastinated completing this review because I was hoping I could have a completely positive review, but I do have to tell you that the off-gassing from these sandals is not pleasant. I let them sit outside for several days after I took them out of the package because the smell was so strong. It has now been over 3 weeks and I still will not allow them to be in my house because if they are I can smell it right away and go searching for what stinks. They stay on the porch and he can wear them around the yard or on short car trips to the pool. It's too bad they are like that because they are cute and are comfortable for him.

Product Description from United Creative Group:

- Footwear designed around the NEW Power Rangers Dino Charge Series
- Beach Clogs, Flip Flops, and Sandals
- For Boys and Toddlers Sizes
- Coming soon - Beach Towels & Travel Luggage


I was sent these sandals for the purpose of reviewing them on this blog. No monetary compensation was received. All photographs, thoughts and opinions are my own.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Thrifty Thursday: FREE Camps from Apple

This is a picture last year after my daughter finished her free 3-day iBook Camp at the Apple Store at the Mall of America. It is also at MANY other Apple stores as well. You can see more pictures from her iBook Camp here.

Kids must be between ages 8-12 and are allowed to sign up for only 1 camp. Sign up quickly as they fill up quickly. I found out about it last year when the iMovie Camps was already full, so iBook camp it was.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Wordless Wednesday: Sibley Park in Mankato

This is a fun and unique park worth checking out in Mankato, MN.It is called Sibley Park. It is a farm theme park with a petting zoo at it. It is a FREE park, but you do need to have quarters to buy food to feed the animals.