Category - Entertainment

Sea Life Charlotte-Concord Aquarium To Host 100 Kids to Celebrate 100th Attraction Giveaway

The new Sea Life Aquarium at Concord Mills will provide 100 tickets to local children in celebration of being the 100th attraction to open under UK-based Merlin Entertainments.

This outreach initiative was created through Merlin’s Magic Wand, the company’s charity that provides magical days out for seriously ill, disabled or disadvantaged children at Merlin attractions worldwide. This year, Merlin will work with local organizations in more than 22 countries to provide 10,000 kids with tickets to visit their 100 attractions.
 
Sea Life Charlotte-Concord has partnered with local organizations including Ronald McDonald House of Charlotte (RMH), The Sandbox and Carolinas HealthCare System’s Levine Children’s Hospital to provide tickets to children in their care. Each of these Charlotte area organizations helps families with a child who has been diagnosed with cancer or a life-altering illness by providing them with basic necessities, suitable housing or medical care.

TicketPresentation
 
“We are always thrilled to partner with organizations who are passionate about children,” said Mona Johnson-Gibson, Executive Director of RMH of Charlotte. “Sea Life is a great way for our families to take a break and have some fun!”

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Sea Life’s mascot Sharky visited with some of the kids at Carolinas HealthCare System’s Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte today for a special ticket presentation. He made an earlier appearance at Ronald McDonald House in April.
 
“The entire Sea Life team is excited to be able to provide so many amazing children with a fun day away to just be kids,” said Jack Stevenson, Marketing Manger at Sea Life Charlotte-Concord. “We look forward to sharing our underwater journey with them very soon.”
 
About Sea Life Charlotte-Concord
Sea Life Charlotte-Concord is a one-story, 26,000-square-foot indoor aquarium with another 10,000 square feet planned for future expansion. This one-of-a-kind attraction will allow visitors to experience the magical world beneath our seas with marine habitats, displays, and close encounters with over 5,000 sea creatures. Sea Life provides a glimpse of the diversity of marine life while also playing an active role in animal and environmental conservation. Visitors will see strong evidence of Sea Life’s Breed, Rescue and Protect activities around the world, including new projects developed locally.
 
Sea Life is the world’s largest aquarium chain with over 45 attractions around the world. Sea Life Charlotte-Concord is the sixth Sea Life aquarium launched in the U.S. and is located at Concord Mills, 8111 Concord Mills Blvd. in Concord, NC. For more information, visit www.visitsealife.com/charlotte-concord.

In honor of the tickets being given away to some great charities in Charlotte, here’s your chance to win 4 General Admission tickets to Sea Life Charlotte-Concord.

Enter here:

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SEA LIFE Generic Logo AW (Holding CMYK 100-80-0-20)

 

 

I am a member of the Sea Life Charlotte-Concord Parent Council. I receive complimentary admission however I am not paid for my opinions or work.

Tips for Visiting the Georgia Aquarium {Giveaway}

Planning your summer trips and family vacations? Might I suggest a trip to Atlanta, Georgia to visit to the world’s second largest aquarium, Georgia Aquarium.

Tips for Visiting Georgia Aquarium MommyB Collage

Daddy B, Miss A, Lil’ C, and I were able to make a weekend trip down to Atlanta thanks to the Georgia Aquarium and Hilton Garden Inn Atlanta Downtown. We had heard from some of YOU and friends how amazing the aquarium was, and are happy to confirm all of the rave reviews were spot on. We really enjoyed our visit and would love to go back again soon.

For those of you thinking of making a visit to the Georgia Aquarium here are some tips:

Tips for Visiting Georgia Aquarium MommyB

Take your time.

If you are visiting Georgia for attractions other than the aquarium I would highly recommend setting aside an entire day (times vary depending on the day of the week), to enjoy the aquarium.

Get to events/shows early.

Especially on weekends, the shows and special events fill up quickly, if you don’t like large crowds or want to be proactive plan your schedule around the shows giving about a 15-30 minute leeway at least.

 

Eat meals at off times.

You’d be surprised at how many people were in the cafeteria (which has some really yummy/healthy options too) right at noon for lunch. If you plan accordingly you can miss the mad rush, find a table, enjoy your meal, and end up enjoying the aquarium while everyone else is eating.

Take lots of pictures and video.

With many of the animals and fish being species we don’t often see, be sure to take lots of pictures and video to commemorate your trip and reminisce in the memories. Sometimes we get caught up in seeing the sites but forget to document it too.

Skip shows if you have sensitive children.

Both of our girls are a little sensitive to things that seem to be scary including movies, bugs, large animals. While I understand not all children are affected there are some things for parents of sensitive children to be aware of.

In Deepo’s Undersea 3D Wonder Show certain children may be bothered by 3d (the film or the glasses), air blowing under seats, and non-harmful objects falling from the ceiling. If your child has a sensory processing disorder or is sensitive in this manner you may want to skip this attraction, however if your child loves movies and doesn’t mind the sensory features this is a great, wholesome video even though there is some commercialism (Home Depot), there are lots of laughs and learning showcased.

Georgia Aquarium Deepo Review MommyB

In Georgia Aquarium’s other large attraction; AT&T Dolphin Tales show, your family gets to watch a live dolphin show with a pirate tale. This show is held in an amphitheater type setting so if someone in your family is claustrophobic or afraid of heights you may want to skip out. Also we loved the dolphins so much that they canceled out the “bad guys” aka dead fish pirate ship/bad pirates, but the girls did mention how that part of the show bothered them. If your children do not like “bad guys” in movies/shows you may want to consider skipping this attraction.

Allow yourself to be amazed.

With the media and accessibility that we have these days it’s often hard for us to fully realize the wonders of the world. Try to remember these are real creatures and animals that you have the privilege of seeing up close. Encourage your children (and yourself) to learn at least 5 new things about sea life.

Amazing Georgia Aquarium Pics MommyB

Look for discounts.

Often times you can find attraction discounts with memberships you are a part of, or if you are a credit card holder, be sure to check also with travel bureaus for discounts to attractions. Georgia Aquarium is also offering an amazing Southern Hospitality Discount for residents of Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama and Florida. Visitors receive discounted admission of $29.95 +tax when they show a valid ID verifying residency at the ticket window only, now through June 13, 2014.

Enter to win tickets.

My last piece of advice for visiting the Georgia Aquarium is to enter to win your family a 4 pack of Total Tickets with a Behind-the-Scenes Tour, and a 1 Day Parking Voucher. How awesome is that?!?! If it’s not a great fit for you feel free to enter to win for someone else or tell your friends/family about this giveaway and all of the great things Georgia Aquarium has in store for families.

Enter here to win:

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Plan your trip.

Start your planning by checking out information on the Georgia Aquarium website. The site offers hours of operation, parking information, ticket package details and is sure to get your family excited about the trip!

 

 

My family and I were invited to Georgia and the Georgia Aquarium. We were not compensated for a review nor did we pay for admission or lodging. Thank you to Georgia Aquarium and Hilton Garden Inn Downtown Atlanta for hosting us.

Tech Review: i Covers and Cases

Sometimes when you acquire new technology you forget all the additional accessories that go along with the new devices.  Coming from personal experience {aka a cracked phone}, it’s important to make sure your devices are protected and have the right accessories. I had the opportunity to review a couple of new i-accessories and wanted to give you my thoughts so you can make the best purchasing choice whether you go with the brands listed, or the reviews give you some helpful tips on buying your next device accessory.

From ZooGue – iPad 3rd/4th generation Genius case $49.99

iPad_Case_Main_Picture__49964.1344116079.220.220

[I like:]

  • Fit my iPad perfectly
  • Has the appropriate spots for cameras etc.
  • Comes in PINK and BLACK
  • Has a hard cover for protection
  • Can attach with velcro straps for portability
  • Decent price

[/checklist]

[Not so much:]

  • This version has a velcro stand that sticks to everything (including my clothes when carrying it)
  • No screen protector
  • Only comes in two colors currently

[/badlist]

ZooGue iPad Case Review MommyB

Overall thoughts:

I think I would have chosen the Zoogue Prodigy iPad case over this one because the velcro is very annoying, but I do love that the case allows for several angles (which is great for glare and different user heights).

For more details and to purchase check out ZooGue’s website: zoogue.com

From NueVue – Leather iPhone Case $56.99

neuvue_iphone_1

[I like:]

  • That it rids my phone of germs {phones are so germy!}
  • It’s available in leather, canvas, and cotton twill and several colors
  • The sleek and clean look of the case

[/checklist]

[Not so much:]

  • These types of case covers don’t offer protection for phones and other devices
  • Cannot use the phone while it’s in the case
  • If using for only cleaning purposes you still need to remove your hardcase before cleaning

[/badlist]

NewVu iPhone Case review MommyB

Overall thoughts:

I LOVE the concept of a clean phone {bacteria-free especially} however I need my phone to be protected especially being a busy mom. If they can somehow combine cleaning with hardcase phones I’m all in. In the meantime I will continue to use my NueVue case to clean my phone on occasion.

More details and purchasing NueVue on their website: nuevue.com

Are you looking for a case or accessory for any of your devices? Do you have any technology device accessories favorites? 

Tech Review i Covers and Cases MommyB

 

Thanks for checking out my i accessories post, feel free to share this post and come back to read more reviews, thoughts, and giveaways on MommyBKnowsBest.com

I received review products from both companies in order to give a detailed review and chose to share my experiences with you. All opinions express in this post are my honest thoughts.

 

 

 

10 Things I Heart in Spring

10-Things-I-Heart-Spring

I decided that I would not write about Spring on my blog until it finally felt like Spring here in Charlotte, NC, however today, it’s going to be up in the 80s so I’m not sure if I’m allowed to write this considering the summer-like weather we are having. Then again, how can I not share with you things I’m hearting this Spring?!?!

Disneyland in the Spring MommyB
1. Traveling – Although we’re in the midst of packing for our move in June, we have been traveling a lot this Spring. We had the opportunity to visit Disneyland in California, where the weather was amazing and we had a BLAST! And we just returned from an amazing trip to Georgia where we visited the Georgia Aquarium and World of Coca-Cola (I’ll have trip reports on both soon!) Where have you traveled this Spring or where are you traveling to?

Build-a-Bear Spring2. New friends – We have been making lots of new friends this Spring! We recently started going to story hour at the church we’ve been attending and making new friends there AND in stuffed friend news, we got a new Spring Build-A-Bear friend who is an ADORABLE Soft & Sweet Lamb ($18) She has fluffy white fur that’s perfect for cuddling. Our little lamb is all dressed up for Spring and tea parties AND at Build-A-Bear you can also add scents so your furry friends smell oh-so-sweet, how cool is that?!?

3. Outside Fun – We are blessed to have a nice, flat, and decent size backyard so lately we’ve been spending a lot of time outside. If it’s nice out I’ll let Miss A do her homework outside and of course lots of chalk, bubbles, running, scooters/bikes, and water table play. How about you??

4. Spring Cleaning – I know this sounds soooo strange, but I really do love organizing and cleaning, even though these days I don’t have quite as much time as I’d like to do either. Luckily, the move gives me a great excuse to do a little bit of both. I’ve been trying out a few new cleaning products including some Method products and Nature’s Kloth.

We try to be a little more eco-friendly here and there and both of these products help. We’ve been using Nature’s Kloth instead of a sponge and replacing the way we clean with paper towels to create less waste. I love that it’s eco-friendly (biodegradable, washable over 300 times, made from cotton and plant fiber, and more) and is great for many uses inside and outside the house. I definitely feel better about cleaning when there isn’t a huge pile of used papertowels in my trash.

5. Healthy Kiddos – I am super thankful for healthy kiddos. Lately we’ve been pretty healthy especially considering that we’ve been flying and traveling a lot. We have a lot of friends who have not been so fortunate this Spring. For those uncomfortable fevers and painful colds and aches we give our girls Children’s Advil. For Lil’ C who does not do well with any sort of pain, this does the trick for us. I love that they have so many flavors (and dye-free versions) too since she doesn’t care for most medicine flavors. Plus, they have some fun activities and tips for parents on how to stay healthy.

Garden Lites Collage

We also love that our girls like healthy foods like Garden Lites. Miss A surprisingly enjoyed these gluten-Free, veggie muffins. They’re high in fiber, and low in fat. Miss A’s favorite flavor was: Zucchini Banana Chocolate Chip. They have loads more flavors and come in a box of 4 with an SRP of $3.99.

Lee Fashion Spring Capris

6. Spring Clothes!! – I love a good infinity scarf, especially the beautiful chevron one that one of my friends gave me for my birthday, but I really enjoy wearing comfy Spring clothes. I love wearing adorable maxi and sun dresses because they are so flowy and comfortable.

I am also loving the new Lee Spring collection that features bermuda shorts and capris that are comfortable while being dressy at the same time. If I need to dress up an outfit some of their capris and shorts come with adorable, fashionable belts as well. Here are a few of my other favorites from their collection:

Lee Spring Collection

 

7. Parties – I always love a good get-together and with the girls’ birthdays, holidays and end of school coming for us, Spring is always filled with fun parties and celebrations. We’ll have a small birthday get together for Miss A {since we went to Disneyland the girls aren’t getting their usual HUGE parties}, a class party for the end of the year {here’s an end of the year gift idea}, and loads of friends birthday parties.

Iesodo Video8. Good Message Movies – We were sent a couple of videos from Iesodo (pronounced Ya-Sa-Doe) that retells Bible stories with animated animals, mainly birds. My girls LOVED the videos and have been singing the catchy songs every day since we’ve watched them. We love sharing these videos with our friends because we know the language and content are appropriate for all viewers. Even if you have no religious affiliation, but want your children to learn good values, these videos promote wholesome character traits and morals and is good for children of any age.

9. Pasta Salad – Of course you can eat pasta salad anytime of year, but this is the season pasta salads shine! I really love cold, crisp salads with lots of veggies. What’s your favorite pasta salad recipe?

B girls with Genevive Goings Choo Choo Soul at Disneyland

10. Meeting Amazing People – Not that this is necessarily a Spring thing, but since we went to the Disney Social Media Moms Celebration, we were able to meet some pretty amazing people. One of our favorites though was Genevieve Goings from Choo Choo Soul with Genevieve.

Miss A says her favorite person/character she met the entire stay was Genevieve and we met a lot of people/characters so that says a lot. Of course we fell in love with Genevieve on Disney/Disney Junior with her Choo Choo Soul songs and realized she did more music for Disney as well as a round up of songs from Disney classic movies.

We’re excited to hear that her first Independent Children’s Album for pre-schoolers is called “Do You Know?” and releases June 3, with the first single “My Telephone Number Is” available NOW on iTunes.The album focuses on learning key fundamentals with Genevieve’s unique brand of “Kids Music with Soul.” I got an exclusive preview of the songs on her new album and wow!

My girls love to dance and sing and they get that from their mommy, this is one album you will not be able to contain the dancing. Our favorite songs are: “My Telephone Number Is” {great for helping your child learn your phone number, a MUST}, “Inside Voice” {which is rockin’ and rowdy in the best possible way and teaches kids when and where to use their inside/outside voice} and surprisingly, “Gotta Do My Business” {a potty song with swagger}.

I love when kids music is both appropriate and enjoyable and Genevieve definitely accomplishes that with the album. I can’t wait to buy a copy for our family and give one away on the site along with a few other goodies! In honor of Spring, I’m giving away a $25 Build-A-Bear gift card, 2 copies of Iesodo DVDs (Faith and Love) and once it’s available on June 3rd, a copy of Genevive Goings’ new album.

Enter here to win!!

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This is not a compensated post, however I did receive samples of some of the above products/brands and chose to tell you about them. All opinions expressed in the post are my own honest thoughts.

Why You’ll Want to Read a Book about Trash {Guest Post}

All children are recyclers at heart. They are inventors, creators and magicians when it comes to re-using things lying about the house. An old towel becomes a cape, boxes are space ships or racing cars, an empty soda bottle makes a super submarine and a cardboard tube is a pirates telescope. When children look at the world of waste they see endless possibilities.

At Retrash we can totally relate to that wonder of creating things from unwanted waste. Retrash is a book all about reusing waste to create beautiful pieces of art and practical items. It inspires creativity and imagination through stories of upcycling, recycling and living sustainably.

The book, show cases over 80 artists from all over the world who are looking at waste in new and creative ways.

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This gorgeous dress and others like it are the work of Australian designer Danette Rowse, and are made by recycling fabrics found in charity shops including table cloths and pillow cases.

“I am inspired by my desire to make comfortable, versatile and quality clothing for children.” says Danette.

Copyright Robyn Stewardson Retrash 3

Robyn Stewardson creates these beautiful owls using found objects, mainly kitchen utensils which are assembled using wire.

“I have been an avid op-shopper for years and thrive on giving something discarded a new lease on life. Now visiting op shops and trash and treasure markets is a must to find the materials I need to create my ever expanding parliament of owls.” says Robyn.

10 year old Olive Reichel makes ‘Miss O’s’ off cut bears using fabric off cuts from her mum’s design studio.

“I really, really, like making teddies. I get inspiration from random things everywhere and I like basing my ideas on pictures in my head.”

Copyright Brady-Anne Cushing Retrash 2

Brady-Anne Cushing creates hand made products from fabrics that are repurposed or salvaged.

“We gather our materials in many ways (salvage shops, remnants left over from friends, home decor projects, yard sales, etc.). We enjoy the challenge of finding unique materials in unconventional ways. We take great pride in the quality of our original items and create them with strength and integrity to bring years of
enjoyment!”
says Brady-Anne.

I believe that Retrash can inspire a small step for change and I am passionate about getting his book into the world.

Retrash Logo

We are currently running a funding campaign to raise money to print Retrash. You can get a copy of Retrash at a reduced price during the funding campaign, and you can even have your name printed in the book to show your support. Visit the website for more information: retrash.com

 

This is not a sponsored post, I thought the idea was cool and was honored that Founder of retrash, Nathan Devine, was interested in authoring this blog post.

Tweetsie Visit Spring #Giveaway

Happy amusement park season!! If you’re following me on Facebook, Instagram, and/or Twitter you know that my family just got back from an exciting trip to Disneyland with Disney Social Media Moms Celebration and had a blast.

The B family is no stranger to visiting theme parks and amusement parks, we’ve been all over the country between myself and the girls and of course DaddyB aka CoasterCritic and have our clear favorite and other parks that don’t necessarily live up to the hype.

All four of us were able to visit Tweetsie Railroad in North Carolina last year and really enjoyed our visit. I love how family-oriented and wholesome this park is and even that it’s nestled in the mountains. If you want to read about our previous visit head here: Family Getaway: Tweetsie Railroad Review.

Tweetsie Collage

We are excited about another visit this Spring/Summer and know the girls will enjoy it even more this year since Lil C is bigger. While we don’t live close enough to get our own Season Pass, I typically recommend if people think they’ll visit more than once that they consider getting one because of the perks and value.

A 2014 Golden Rail Season Pass to Tweetsie includes:

  • A full season of adventure from Wild West train rides, amusement rides, live entertainment and the Deer Park Habitat
  • Free admission to all special events including: Day Out With Thomas, the Ghost Train® Halloween Festival, SpongeBob Squarepants, Cool Summer Nights evenings (July 5, 12, 19 and 26), Railroad Heritage weekends and more!
  • Free parking for the July 4th Fireworks Extravaganza, the High Country¹s most popular Independence Day celebration

Season Pass holders also receive discounts at other North Carolina family attractions including:

  • Biltmore Estate
  • Chimney Rock Park
  • Grandfather Mountain
  • Mast General Store
  • Great Smoky Mountains Railroad
  • Tanger Outlets in Blowing Rock

Tweetsie Railroad is open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, including Memorial Day. Starting May 30th through August 17th the park will run seven days a week from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., returning to the weekend schedule from August 18 through November 2, including Labor Day. *With the exception of a few holidays (see website for full schedule and details before visiting.)

Season passes are now available at a special rate of $80 for adults and $55 for children ages 3 through 12. After April 27, rates increase to $90 for adults and $65 for children. Children 2 and under are admitted free.

Daily admission to Tweetsie Railroad is $39 for adults and $26 for children ages 3 through 12. Children 2 and under are admitted free. Tickets and Golden Rail Season Passes are available at Tweetsie.com.

For more information about the 2014 season at Tweetsie Railroad, visit Tweetsie.com or call 877.TWEETSIE (877.893.3874). Find Tweetsie on Facebook or follow Tweetsie on Twitter @TweetsieRR.

If you are closeby or planning a visit to North Carolina, I highly recommend that you and your family visit Tweetsie Railroad, there’s something for the whole family whether it’s rides, performances, seeing the steam engine, mining, or visiting the petting zoo. It’s easy to spend an entire fun-filled day here.

In honor of their season opening Tweetsie Railroad is giving one lucky MommyB Knows Best reader the chance to win a 4-pack of daily admission tickets. *Does not include special holiday/events

Enter here to win:

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This is not a compensated post, however we received complimentary visit tickets to allow to give our honest opinions on the park. All opinions expressed in this post are honest and my own words. Your opinion may vary.

Tips for Trying Sushi for the First Time and Experiencing New Things at The Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar Charlotte

DaddyB and I were invited to check out The Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar in the SouthPark area of Charlotte, NC last weekend. Yes, you heard right, we had a date night. Though in the past there have been years between our dates out of the house now that we have an amazing babysitter and the girls are older we really enjoy a great night out.

The Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar Restaurant Review MommyB

This was a very interesting visit for us as DaddyB has never tried sushi, ever, and I am allergic to shellfish so have to be selective about what I can and cannot eat. We were excited for the challenge and fully embraced it and had confidence that a restaurant loved by so many in the area would not disappoint.

The Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar Charlotte Review MommyB

When we first walked into The Cowfish we noticed the fun atmosphere immediately as familiar music from our young adulthood played, and conversation filled the room. Once we were sat at our table we were able to soak in the eclectic hints of decor in the room. I personally loved the giant sized bento box:

The Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar Charlotte MommyB

Be forewarned, the menu at The Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar is HUGE, both literally and in content of menu items. If you’re someone who takes a long time to order you may want to check out their menu ahead of time online. Our waiter Brandon however, really knew the menu and was able to tell us quickly about items and was amazing at answering all of our many questions about ingredient dishes, and his recommendations.

We shared delicious truffle fries {a must order}, but when it came to our entrees we decided to try a little bit of both worlds that The Cowfish offers. As I mentioned DaddyB has never tried sushi at all so he got the famous Fusion Specialty Bento Box that includes sushi, a mini burger, and awesome sides including my favorite thai cucumbers. I decided to go with a diner favorite The Deliverance Roll – Southern Style Bar-B-Q-shi, which included delicious bbq pulled pork, a really cool potato wrap and was topped with bacon coleslaw.

The Cowfish Restaurant Charlotte MommyB

If you’ve never eaten sushi, here are a few tips for trying sushi for the first time:

1. Start with a “beginner roll”. Consider starting with a roll that doesn’t include raw fish like the California Roll {Daddy B started his meal with an intermediate roll and liked it, but wasn’t ready for the texture.}

2. Choose a roll that offers a tempura {light batter} or a flavorful drizzle to enhance the flavor of the roll.

3. Consider a fusion restaurant like The Cowfish, that offers familiar ingredients alongside new ingredients. This will give more confidence in experiencing new foods.

Speaking of experiencing new foods, this truly was our night for doing just that! Not only did DaddyB try sushi for the first time, but we were also able to sample some of the unique ingredients that The Cowfish has to offer. Check this out, we had flavor infused Masago {fish eggs}, with wasabi, citrus, soy, and sriracha. {My favorite was the citrus flavor.} We also got a “sneak peek” at the newest wasabi-infused micro greens. I must say this was one of the coolest things I’ve eaten in a while. They taste like micro greens at first but then as you chew a burst of the wasabi flavor comes out. I’d love to see this paired with a dish.

New Foods at The Cowfish Charlotte MommyB

Our experience at The Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar was filled with fun, new experiences, unique and tasty food. If I had to change anything about our night out I would have loved my food to be a little hotter {I like my food on the warmer side of the spectrum (ask DaddyB, he thinks I’m funny)}. Other than that, seriously the ambiance, outstanding service, and price of our date night were just as sweet as our yummy fortune cookie-crusted dessert.

Thanks The Cowfish Sushi Burger Bar Charlotte MommyB

Have you ever had fusion sushi before??? What are your favorite sushi dishes?

This is not a compensated post, we received a complimentary meal in order to give our honest thoughts on the restaurant, services, and food offerings. These are our opinions based on the above experience, however your experiences may vary.

Not So Much – Things I Don’t Like and Their Replacements

Sorry I haven’t posted in a while, I have a nagging cough and went to the doctor to find out that I had a severe ear infection and was on the verge of a double ear infection, blerg. With the help of some medicine and much needed rest I am feeling better, but that also meant less time to work.

Today I’m starting a new kind of post, a lot of people ask me why I don’t write more about things I don’t like. There are actually a lot of products, and things in general that I’m not a huge fan of, but usually I don’t take the time to write them because I enjoy writing about the things I DO like more and would rather give them the spotlight on my website. But since you asked, straight up, here are a few things that I have to say, “Not So Much” to, but also what I do like {I can’t help myself}:

Not So Much MommyB

Reverie pillow – This pillow is said to be one of the more comfortable pillows and while it’s great that it’s hypoallergenic and has some neat features, the most important feature, comfort, was lacking. Both DaddyB and I found the pillow to be much too firm for us even after weeks of use. If you like a REALLY firm pillow though this will be right up your alley. What I DO like however is sleep, luckily I’ve been able to get a little more of that than I’m used to with this cold.

Paperwork – For those of you who may not know, we are moving (staying in the greater Charlotte and surrounding area), but we are excited to look for a new house, however this means lots of paperwork for loan approval and also it’s tax season so making sure we have receipts, logging into accounts, and getting all of our ducks in a row has certainly been tedious. Lucky for me DaddyB has been in charge of the paperwork and staying up late to get things taken care of. So the great side to all this paperwork is that God has an awesome new neighborhood and home in store for us and I have much appreciation for my husband through this experience.

Discovery Place’s 101 Inventions Exhibit –  While we did have fun in the hands-on section (although I would have loved more of this) of this new exhibit at Discovery Place in Charlotte, NC, we felt that our girls (almost ages 4 and 7) were a little too young for the content (birth control, sperm) and there were parts of the exhibit that scared Lil’ C (darkness and music). DaddyB did enjoy the exhibit, but feels like he didn’t get as much info in the time we had as he wanted. I know a few people who took children and did NOT enjoy their experience, one mom even asked for her money back. Because this exhibit is not included in museum admission I would personally say skip this one. I do however like Discovery Place museums. When we left the 101 Inventions exhibit my girls had a BLAST, like usual, in the rest of the museum testing out science and math skills, playing tug-of-war with DaddyB, and I must say in defense of Discovery Place, we’ve been to a couple other exhibits in the past that we have loved.

Discovery Place 101 Inventions Review MommyB

Toxic things – For this I’m lumping in things and people. I’m super guilty of putting things in my body that aren’t healthy {maybe you can relate}, and lately have been studying more homeopathic styles of living and also Ph Balance with the help of some friends. Often times I know and can feel the acidity or “hot” nature of my body after I ingest something and can see that there are easy fixes, I’m excited to post some things here that may help you out too. As for toxic people, a while ago I mentioned this being my year of intentional living and making changes for the better, I can say that I’ve been more mindful in my relationships and growing the ones I see that are healthy, supportive, and uplifting for me and leaving behind some that were toxic and still present themselves to be toxic. Choosing what’s best for myself and my family to grow closer to God and become more like Christ means leaving things that can’t be changed behind.

Cancer – Unfortunately it feels like this season of life that I’m going through right now is riddled with illness. Recently, Heaven gained an angel in Super Carter, whose family is amazing and was very close in age to Lil’ C. And since I’ve learned of friends that I went to school, both high school and college with that have family members who, too, are dealing with cancer. While I know it’s not always an immediate comfort, my family and these families have chosen to turn to God to give them strength to get through each day. I am constantly encouraged by attitude and faith that these people have.

 

While I know this was a VERY interesting mix of things I am not loving right now it’s all from my heart, the good and bad.

What are some things that you’re not a fan of right now? What are you replacing that bad thing with or what good can come out of it?

 

I received a samples and admission to some of the above mentioned products and events. This in no way affects the opinions expressed in this post. All thoughts expressed are my own, yours may vary.

How to Show Your #disneyside Princess Style

It’s no secret that we love to have parties and playdates, but having two girls a princess party is a must! We’ve thrown a Sofia the First Princess party, and a Princess Birthday party for Lil’ C and of course many princess dress-up parties in our time.

Realizing that all of our #disneyside attendees were going to be girls, {we wish we could have invited millions of friends but with the party limits and space inside our house, only Disneyland could have held us all}, our obvious choice for party theme was a princess party. Don’t worry though, we had plenty of Mickey, Minnie, and the gang too.

How to Show your #disneyside Princess Style MommyB

Here’s our recipe for a great #disneyside party:

A Spoonful of Beautiful Princesses:

#disneyside princesses MommyB

and some Disney pals, including one of the new Disney Princess Palace Pets exclusively from Build-a-Bear Workshop. Pumpkin, who is Cinderella’s Palace Pet friend can now be made at Build-a-Bear Workshop and you can win a Build-A-Bear gift card at the end of this post to make your own!

Disney Princess Palace Pets and #disneyside friends MommyB

A Heaping Helping of delicious drinks and snacks:

Heaping Helping of Delicious #disneyside Drinks & Snacks MommyB

Our snacks included:

  • Disney Princess Fruit Snacks and “Snow White” bunny gummies
  • Pepperoni and Ritz cracker Mickey heads (with cheese because every mouse loves cheese)
  • Pink Princess Punch {aka strawberry lemonade} in our Mickey-fied Aladdin mason jar.
  • Mickey themed cupcake liners filled with Craisins
  • Hidden Mickey kid-friendly snacks and veggies in black round bowls
  • Hidden Mickey cupcakes*
  • Mini Mickey cupcakes*
  • #Disneyside Mickey cookies*
  • Mickey chocolate cake pops *

* Thanks to Cupcrazed Cakery for providing the delicious baked goods, the moms and princesses loved them and even got to take their cake pops home, some of them shared with siblings too! These treats were amazing!

A dash of decorations, crafts, games, and goodie bags:

#disneyside princess party mommyB

Our guests got their photos taken in front of the Mickey and Gang Step and Repeat, chose their favorite Disney Princess tattoo, made Disney inspired t-shirts from Hanes brand, {of course most of the shirts featured Mickey and favorite princesses}, listened to the Disney Frozen soundtrack, played Disney trivia and Disney Bingo, and of course left the party with some pretty cute purple and pink princess swag including headband crowns, star wand lollipops, and a variety of Disney goodies.

We had so much fun with our friends and had a blast showing our princess #disneyside. I can’t wait to take the girls to Disneyland as a part of the Disney Social Media Moms Conference in April. They will be beyond excited to visit and DaddyB and I can’t wait either.

We want to know, how do you show your #disneyside???

As promised, here’s your chance to show your #disneyside with Build-a-Bear Workshop, enter to win a $25 gift card and be sure to check out their new Disney Princess Palace Pets friends.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Thanks to BSM Media, Walt Disney World Resorts & Parks, Build-a-Bear Workshop, Cupcrazed Cakery, SmartFab, Aladdin for helping us with our #disneyside celebration and share it with friends.

North America’s Leading Children and Maternity Consignment Event – Just Between Friends Franchise

This is a sponsored post on behalf of Just Between Friends.

Have you ever thought about running a business of your very own? Being able to set your own hours? Helping your neighborhood and community? Making some extra cash for your family?

As moms, often times we want something in addition to being a mom and turn to jobs outside the home. As a blogger, most of the time I work from home, but there are opportunities for me to attend media events and work with the community, much like owning your own franchise with Just Between Friends Franchise {JBF}, North America’s leading children’s and maternity consignment event. I get to be mommy first and work at my own pace and as much or little as I want, and I really enjoy what each job, {different in it’s own rite}, brings me.

Shopper 25

With the opportunity to turn your passion for helping other families save money, and wanting to step into a role of business owner for whatever reason it may be, Just Between Friends may be the perfect fit for you to become a business owner.

Some benefits to running your own business:

  • Make your own hours – if your children have sports or extracurricular activities that you can’t miss you can plan your working hours and event hours around your family’s needs.
  • Know your customer base – living in the area that you are hosting your consignment events gives you a great advantage of knowing what the best dates for sales will be and how to promote your sales.
  • Help families save money – JBF helps more than half a million families save and earn money every single year and you will be a big part of that!
  • Make extra income for your family – supplement income, save up for vacations that you might not have been able to go on before, or start or build on your family savings.
  • Work with others – Should you decide to run a business with friends, you’ll be working together to help create a successful business and enjoying that relationship that may be stronger

The Today Show calls it “the hottest ticket in town” and you could be the person or people who bring this to your area. Check out this video to hear more about the Just Between Friends consignment franchise.

 

Just Between Friends currently has 138 franchises in 28 states and Canada and expanding. That’s where you come in. JBF is looking a mom, or several moms to be the first to bring this super-successful event to area where there aren’t any.

At this point you may be wondering how it all works:

• Local moms/families/friends run the consignment event twice a year – spring and fall (a few ambitious owners may add in a holiday sale or summer event if they decide to)

• Families in your community sign up as consignors and sell the new and gently-used items their children have outgrown (or never used)

• Consignors earn 60 to 70 percent of the price of their sold items

• Other families shop the sales event and generally save more than 50 to 90% off of retail prices

Because JBF is part of a franchise, you have all the tools you’ll need to help you succeed at your fingertips and a great support system to help you build this business. That means you still have the flexibility to put your family first AND enjoy your passion AND help others. JBF is great for any “mompreneur” who is interested in owning a business that will help earn extra money without taking long hours from your family every week.

JBF Franchise Owners WantedHere’s how you can get started:

– The Franchise Fee is $14,900 in the United States and $16,900 in Canada

– The total investment is between $25,000 to $30,000

– Traits of a successful franchisee include:

  • Experience in sales and/or marketing
  • Outgoing personality
  • Goal-driven with a “get-it-done” mindset
  • Management experience is a plus

If you or someone you might know may be interested learn more about Just Between Friends franchise opportunities here:

Click here to fill out a franchise application online

Click here for more information on franchise opportunities

Let’s not keep this a secret Just Between Friends.

 

 

 

This is a sponsored post in partnership with Just Between Friends. Any opinions expressed in this post are my own. I love empowering families and helping others save and enjoy being a working mom, and wanted to share this information. Your opinions may vary.