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Leggo to the Lego store

Friday, July 6, 2018
Sometimes the touristy stores also end up being their own activity.  We were in the flatiron/Madison Sq Park area and had about an hour to kill so we dropped by the Lego Store so the girls could just play.  Lego has a "build your dreams" campaign going where they encourage kids and adults to create anything with legos and they feature it in the store.  Winter's creation "pantc" (?) made it to the store window which made her exceptionally proud though she couldn't really explain what the four-eyed, four-legged creature meets helicopter was.   We went from the Lego store to the apple store to play with robots so I'm just gonna say we had our STEM quota covered for the day!

Chocolate dipped 4th of July

Thursday, July 5, 2018
Having the 4th fall in the middle of the week was such a downer b/c all I could think about was not staying out too late because I still had to wake up the next morning to go to work. Midweek holidays are a wrap. Moving forward - either take off the beginning or the end of the week (preferably the end, right?) Either way, with the late sunsets of summer, I know fireworks are a late affair and took that off the table this year.  We'll catch the macy's version thank you very much (though it is pretty odd to hear them going off right outside and still not see them because of skyscrapers blocking the view) All in all, our holiday was a perfect combo of craft and chillaxin:
 We started out the morning taking a crafting class at Michaels.  It was some hanging star mobile made out of pipe cleaners and beads. It was a little suspect because the instructor and I had to basically trace and cut the first part of the project but stringing beads piqued their interest thankfully so we left the girls to their own devices for the second half of the hour.

 Knowing we were tasked with bringing dessert to a friends BBQ/pool party, I hit up trusty ole' Pinterest for some ideas and came across this red white and blue sprinkled popcorn that was such a cinch to make (and not ridiculously sugary) that this will have to be a potluck staple.

 All you need is white popcorn (preferably mild flavored/air popped), white chocolate drizzled across the popcorn, and then topped with colored sprinkles. set in the fridge for 5 minutes and wala! a tasty treat.

 with all that extra white chocolate dip we made chocolate dipped pretzels—also using the remaining sprinkles.

 It was so delicious we ended up making our own batch and eating it en route to the party.
 speaking of en route...
 we hopped on the NY Ferry for a quick 5 minute ride across the river.

 Pool, popsicles, prosecco (for the mommies) grilled hot dogs and hamburgers, slime-making, and a dance party?? Yep they got their holiday ON alright... Good times had by all.

Kicking off the Kidz Bop US tour with Chrysler x Old El Paso

Thursday, June 14, 2018
 One of the great perks of living in the city is the chance to attend some very fun events like this meet & greet dance party hosted by The Moms Network and Chrysler and Old El Paso to kick off the US Tour of Kidz Bop.  If you haven't heard of this group of super talented kids then there's a good chance you don't have kids (or hang around them) b/c Kidz bop supplies all the kid-friendly versions of the latest top 40 music perfect for playdates, parties, car rides or general entertainment.

 They kicked off their US tour with a meet and greet and it was a great time had by all. They stuck around for at least an hour and half warmly taking photos with EVERY kid and showing off their vocal and dance chops singing Havana and some other song i have no idea what the title is (sorry!).  Winter had a bit of a meltdown when it was her turn to take photos but she later redeemed herself (and the kids graciously remembered and were so happy to cheer her up) before the end of the event. Of course when they got home they had tacos (thanks for the mini kits Old El Paso!) and watched every kidz bop youtube video they could find so they could learn new dance moves. 

This party was held on the 2nd floor of  Pennsy hall -  which is a pretty cool venue for an event!

Retro Winter

Tuesday, June 12, 2018
I love a good throwback and this set from Cat & Jack at target was giving me all the good vibes of summer.  I kind of wish it came in my size!

Winter dashes against the Pros: the NFL Pro Bowl Fan experience recap

Monday, February 5, 2018
In anticipation of the superbowl and in an attempt to escape to a warmer climate, we headed down to Orlando for a little work(out)/play at the NFL Pro Bowl Fan experience.  It's a free event open to the public that coincides with the pro bowl game being played at Camping world stadium in downtown orlando.  The Pro Bowl fan experience, however, takes place at the Disney's Wide World of Sports complex.  I signed both girls up for the kids 100m dash (ages 2+) and spent the 2 weeks leading up to event getting them excited with sprinting "exercises" (an excuse for them to run around the house for once!) 
 We got there fairly early enough to snag a parking spot right outside the gates (seriously LUCKY b/c otherwise you are walking at least 1 mile to the front gates. It gets CROWDED)
 We had seats to watch the NFC players practice but really they were just going through the motions and dancing on the field (music was pumping the whole time). We saw Russell Wilson, Drew Brees, and tons of other players I really don't remember lol.
 They had a whole fan experience where you got to test your skills in a series of challenges where you compared yourself to NFL athletes
Like how fast can you run a 40 yard dash? But the real event was the kids 100m dash. You go in waves, toddlers first.

After the race you get a medal and pose for pictures with a few mascots. I'm from Tampa so we had to get a photo with a buccaneer!

 But the best surprise was in a secret back area, you got to get a photo with Mickey.  He was totally game to do a sprinter's stance (thanks!!)

 and give a few high fives for a race well done!
 and the great part of it all was some quality time with my dad (aka "pop pop!")

Happy (Italian) New Year!

Tuesday, January 2, 2018
Growing up, I always spent new years with my mom and dad. Maybe it was because my parents weren't really big party people, or maybe its because we were in the military and you never know where you may end up at any day, or maybe because my mom was adamant that the three of us be together when the clock struck midnight. In any case it always stuck with me that you spend new years with the ones you love. With two toddlers who are also night owls, staying up til midnight is a fairly easy task but this year our local Eataly (downtown) was hosting a family NYE party with open bar, a plethora of italian foods, and a few kid friendly activities all pumping to a grown-up playlist mixed by a DJ.  We counted down to the Italian new year (6pm NYC time) and partied til it was 9pm. 
Pros: walking distance to home, delicious unlimited food and drinks, several fun stations for kids (cookie decorating, pizza decorating, craft making, gelato cart, and photo booth)

Cons: not enough seating for everyone (or awkward seating - chairs and no tables) some congested walkway areas, much more fun for the 5+ crowd.

All in all I recommend and it was a great alternative to the amateur night options in the city and more appropriate if you have kids in tow.  If theydo it next year, get your tickets early (it sold out fast) and get to the venue SUPER early to grab a great seat as its first come first serve.

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