Sunday, October 30, 2011

Mom's Best Bet Monday

There are so many great ideas, reviews, and giveaways going on around the blogosphere that it is hard to remember them all. There is something new going on here every Monday that you can be a part of.

Let's share our BEST BET on the Linky or in the comments section below. It could be something you read about, an outrageous recipe, or maybe a product that is outstanding, or an amazing giveaway that you want to share about.

Whatever your best bet is, please share below and we will choose a few to shine in the "Mom's Best Bets Spotlight!"
Here are some best bets from last week to enter:

**Oster Hand Blender, Chopper, Electric Knife 11/1    

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Mermaid Birthday Party Ideas

My little girl who is turning 6 in a few days wanted a mermaid birthday themed party.  Living in Hawaii made it an easy task since I knew this would be a perfect pool party.  You can find lots of Ariel, The Little Mermaid theme, but if you are looking for a general mermaid that matches your little one you will have to look a little harder.  I was actually excited about this because even though it was difficult, I enjoyed the creativity of planning such a party.

I did a lot of hunting around to make her party special and to gather all of the mermaid products to make her birthday party a SPLASH!

Hiring a Mermaid:

The absolute hit of the party was having a "real" professional mermaid come and swim with the children.  For my readers from Hawaii, you probably have heard by now of Mermaid Kariel.  She is beautiful, an awesome swimmer, and fantastic with children and one of her specialties is mermaid birthday parties here in Hawaii.

If you live in Hawaii and want to make your event a memorable one, then visit this amazing mermaid. She is pretty popular, working with some big companies, so book ahead!  Check out her page on Mermaid Birthday Parties

How to turn your birthday into an ocean theme?

Use lots of aqua blue and green streamers as seaweed.  My daughter wanted to have pink mingled in, so we had lots of accents of pink in the balloons and decorations.  Also, purchase some nets at any party store for a few dollars which you can drape on top of the table cloth, which gives a nautical feel.

I went through Birthday Express for a fantastic party pack of Mermaid party supplies .  I found sweet plates, cups, blue plastic cutlery, aqua teal balloons, and mylar balloons that have those sweet mermaids on them.  They also have table covers which I got blue for the food table and pink for the guest tables.

Next, cover the space

You can purchase large wall coverings that look like an ocean but you can also do it your self.  I started to paint and draw these cute sea creatures and mermaids with my daughter a week before after I got inspired by Birthday Express.  

The Cake:

We decorated a cupcake stand and then made each cupcake look like a beach scene with graham crackers (sand), blue icing (ocean), and an umbrella. Then I made a cake topper to add to the top.

The Mermaid Birthday Favors:

Since her birthday is near the ending of October we decided to give pumpkin plants to all of the children.
We started with those little terracotta plant holders and my daughter hand painted each one (this was actually a really fun project) After they dried we added some mermaid stickers, dirt, and a pumpkin seed a week before the party.  The night before the party, they were all a few inches high already and we placed them in these cute handmade gift bags by Rock Paper Scissors CPG .  They have Little Mermaids Goodie Bags and Toppers for great pricesAll we had to do was staple and add some confetti paper!

Little Mermaids Goodie Bags & Toppers
To save time you can always do water guns, bubbles and other ocean trinkets at your local party store and fill these sweet bags.

The Food:

We had
*Sushi sandwiches (turkey, cheese, cream, cheese on tortillas)
*Sea cucumbers (pickles)
*Star Fish (pb&j sandwiches)
*Oysters and pearls (cookies with marshmallows inside)
*Crab Salad ( potato salad with crab meat and peas)
*Gold Fish (crackers)
*Salt water and Mermaid Punch to drink

The Mermaid Costume:

There are a lot of mermaid costumes for kids but again most of them are Ariel.  I absolutely love this one from - Magic Mermaid Child's Costume.  It is really beautiful for $26.99. I also added a crown to the costume by adding shells to a crown we had at home.

The Mermaid Games:

*We played a Go Fish which was super easy.  Just use a sheet and tie a sting with a clip around a pole.  Next, purchase some cute water related toys for them to fish for.

*Pin the tail on the mermaid

*Treasure hunt

There are so many options and don't forget that you can include the boys as well like having names such as scuba divers or pirates.  
I hope this list helps you plan the best ocean themed mermaid party for your child!

Modern Mexico Tea Collection Clothes for Kids Review

Tea's newest Modern Mexico collection!

I love tea and not just the drinking kind. The Tea collection is much like the drink, that is shared in many cultures offering inspiration, warmth and mindfulness. Their children’s fashions bare the tagline “for little citizens of the world,” celebrating the beauty found in cultures around the world.

Día de Mercado Dress

The Modern Mexico collection is one of my favorites and it's perfect for this autumn season! I got the sweet 

Skinny Pointelle Leggings that not only matched the sweet top pictured above but 

they also match perfectly with the Día de Mercado Dress (pictured above)


new girls clothing

Tea finds it's beauty through places around the world. Those colors, shapes, sounds, and movements found in these different cultures are exemplified in their pieces.  Tea Collection is inspired by the beauty of cultures around the world and channels those inspirations into apparel with a modern, global vibe.

Skinny Pointelle Leggings

Tea Collection has also designed a collection for women, which features  sweaters, scarves, and a versatile effortless style you can wear anywhere. The Tea collection has Children's clothing,  Girl's clothing, Boy's clothing and Baby Clothes too!

What I like about Tea is that their clothing is not only fashionable but ultra soft, breathable and movable. It is also machine washable. Yes, I am a big fan!

My favorite are their Girls dresses and mix and match sets.  They also carry  tops, leggings, pants, shorts, sweaters, and even outerwear, pajamas, and shoes. 

Visit to check out all of their beautiful clothing,
Also, I found a lot of beautiful Tea clothing on ale at Nordstrom's this past weekend!

Halloween Dvd's for Kids

It's fun to watch thematic shows that coincide with the holidays and seasons.  Halloween is usually equated with scary shows that I don't think are appropriate for children but NCircle Entertainment has two PBS Halloween DVD's, Kooky Spooky Halloween and Tricks and100709_Kooky_SpookyTreats and Word World and The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That.
My daughter loves World World and also likes to watch Cat in the Hat.  So after our pumpkin picking we watched them.

In Kooky Spooky Halloween, sheep is making her Halloween costume while the rest of the word world friends are busy telling stories.  What's nice is that children are constantly learning phonemic awareness during these entertaining shows.

Tricks and Treats starts when The Cat, Nick and Sally, and Fish and the Things Meet the eeriest critters you have ever seen, arrived just in time for this Halloween! There will be lots of tricks and, of course lots of treats, to share with the animal friends you will meet! There's a coconut crab, spider monkeys and bats, and plenty more fun with The Cat in the Hat!
They are cute to have and to be able to pull out next year.
The best part is that these Dvd's are only $5.99 and $6.99! Visit NCircle Entertainment or you can also purchase at or your local retailers. 
* product  provided for review purposes-opinions are mine

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

How to keep pumpkins fresh in warm weather

Keep Carved Pumpkins Fresh

"When you live in a warm place like Hawaii, carved pumpkins decay faster.  The trick is to seal in moisture and keep them cool when possible. Try one of these techniques to slow down the decaying process and keep your carved pumpkins as fresh as they can be.
1. Store your carved pumpkin in the coolest possible place. If you have a shady area on your lanai, choose that over a spot where there is direct sunlight. Better yet, if you have pumpkins that are small enough, store them in the refrigerator when they are not “in use.”
2. Cover the carved pumpkin with plastic wrap in between use.
3. Revive a shriveling or decaying pumpkin by placing it in a bucket of cold water. Keep it in there for at least a couple of hours before draining. Tip: Because a wet pumpkin can attract mold, try adding a couple tablespoons of disinfectant to the water before submerging the pumpkin. It should kill off any mold-causing bacteria.
4. Smear petroleum jelly such as Vaseline or Aquaphor on all exposed areas of the pumpkin to seal in moisture. Vegetable oil also works.
5. Poke a hole in the top of the pumpkin to allow heat from candles and electric lights to escape.
Remember, pumpkins rot faster in warm weather, so play the odds and try to delay your carving until at least a day or two before Halloween."
 Joanne Romero Courtesy of Island Family Magazine

Photo: SXC
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