Disclaimer: This post contains Amazon Affiliate links to some of my favorite products. You can read more about this here.
We have been brand loyal to another blender for the past 12 years: receiving one as a wedding gift, and then replacing it 7 years later with the nutritional edition. When that broke a while ago, we waited until we found a good deal on any brand. We had seen and heard good things about Ninjas, so when I saw the discount on the model I wanted, I asked Santa for one right away. (Important to note here: no one is paying me to say all this about Ninjas, I am truly in love with ours.) Here it is in all it's glory:
The whole family loves blending, but I ESPECIALLY love the health benefits and how easy it is to get more veggies and vitamins into our systems. ALWAYS on my mind: more ways to spend time with the family, and it's so fun to get us all in the kitchen to make new concoctions.
I wanted to share all my favorite supplies with you, all things I use to accompany our smoothies and such.
1. Reusable Straws
2. Bottle Brushes
3. Popsicle Molds
I am very loyal to Tupperware for all our food container needs - they literally last FOR.EV.ER. My childhood friend's mom had some of these growing up, and I just had to get the newer version for my own kids. I love how they are individual containers so a tray won't make my freezer dirty, and that they catch drips in the mold that turns into the handle. And again, I can toss them into the dishwasher - top rack. (I think it's apparent that I love quick clean ups.)
4. Reusable Squeeze Pouches
5. Healthy Ingredients
What are your favorite things to do with your smoothies? Got more tips to share? Lett me know in the comments!
So you liked this stuff? You'll probably like these posts too:
The following post contains affiliate links for some of our favorite things. You can find out more about that here.
If your kids are anything like ours they love making forts: Pillows, couch cushions, blankets... anything they can get their hands on. I love to watch their creativity as they find materials, and methods of making it all stay put so they can crawl inside. So this product has been on my daughter's wish list for a while now.
I had read many reviews and heard from friends and fellow educators that the Crazy Fort rods bend easily, so I was interested to see how well the Discovery version would hold up as the inside is reinforced, as you can see in the photo below:
I don't know what I was expecting the pieces to be made of, but it definitely wasn't this: the connectors are made from a hard foam like plastic that is sort of malleable to an extent. (Please correct me if you know the actual name of this material in the comments below!)
I was having a bit of difficulty inserting the rods into the connectors sometimes, but once I got them into place, they stuck and it didn't come apart.
I wonder if it will be easier as we use it more and more as the connectors are malleable...
I grabbed some old Queen sized sheets to cover the structure, which I would recommend to make sure you cover the whole thing. We used a fitted sheet around the roundest part the igloo structure we created and that made it even easier to keep it in place.
Once built, our 3 year old loved bringing his toys in and out, but also putting them on the sheet to make it collapse on his sister as she relaxed with a pillow and blanket inside.
The result: we love when we find family activity products that can get all ages involved, so this one definitely fits the bill!
Do you have a favorite structure / building set? Let me know what else we can try out by leaving us a comment,
If you loved this post, you'll also enjoy...
I was invited to guest post on the Life Well Cruised blog about our trip to Blue Lagoon Island in the Bahamas. It was a lot of fun reminiscing about our day here, I was inspired to start looking at excursions for our next family cruise!
Check the post on LifeWellCruised.com !
Have you been on a cruise with your family before? If not, I highly recommend it! Check out my post about being a first time cruiser - I'm sure it will change your mind if you don't think you'd like a cruise!
So when my daughter made me aware that she misses my undivided attention, I thought that I must make some quality time for all of us, especially for me and the hubby.
When I found out that we would have the opportunity to do a paranormal investigation with a real team of investigators, I knew that was our next date night!
Whenever we are on a road trip I always pick up brochures at hotels and stops, and scan the highway for those blue or brown signs that announce attractions and landmarks to visit in that area. If you're following along to our family's journey, I'm constantly on the lookout for fun new things to do. Not everything I find for our family to do is online.
Only by driving by the Lost Villages Museum near Cornwall, Ontario, and freaking out over their sign that said "Ghost Hunt", did I find out about Bytown Paranormal.
My husband and I are fans of ghost hunting shows. In the past, we have visited many sites that we have seen investigated on shows like Ghosthunters like the Cornwall Jail and Fort Henry. But this...THIS was even better. Bytown Paranormal allows you to join in on their investigation!
We got there in the evening and while meeting some of the guests and members, and listening to them talk about their experiences... I got the impression that everyone (including myself) was here because they experienced something in their past that they can't explain. I believe in the power of energy, but can the dead be a part of the energy around us? For this activity, it's not about believing or not believing in ghosts, it's about investigating things to see if they can be explained scientifically, which Bytown Paranormal taught very well.
If you're wondering if this is an activity for your FAMILY: I'd really recommend it for older kids. I don't think ours would have been able to stay awake past the time it started at, let alone stay still during the 4 hour investigation. There was a family that attended with us and the children were older, really well behaved and asked really great questions. Ghost hunters seem to love when children participate in investigations because of that belief that children have that "6th sense", and hope that they'd be able to capture more data when they are around.
The Lost Villages
A little background of the Lost Villages: they are a series of villages that disappeared with the growth of the Saint-Lawrence-Seaway. Business buildings and homes were able to be salvaged from this area, and moved to the site of the Lost Village Museum:
That night, the attendees were split into two groups and we took turns going into three buildings that were moved to the Lost Villages Museum site, with an investigator from the team: the Sandtown Church with Sandra, the Stuart house which had a Freemason lodge in the upstairs with Eric, and the McLeod log cabin with Cindy.
Some of the rooms in the buildings we investigated.
The entire team that was there that night were so nice and very professional. When they conducted the investigations, they encouraged everyone to ask questions themselves. They allowed everyone to hold their equipment to experience it themselves too which was really interesting.
I brought my camera along, more hoping to get some cool, eerie shots than expecting to capture a ghost, and they were open to that as well.
I wish I could say that we "saw something" that night, but we didn't. I heard that the other group had more happenings, but the only thing that happened in our three investigations happened in the church when a piece of equipment that another attendee brought went off a few times - one of those times was a split second after I snapped a photo with my flash on!
It was however very interesting to learn more about the history of the buildings and the stories of the people who lived there.
After the three sessions, they played some videos in the school house and displayed a very large collection of ghost hunting tools and gadgets.
An activity for the parents without little ones? CHECK!
Spending quality time together doing something new and fun? CHECK!
Crossing off an item off that proverbial bucket list? CHECK!
If you want to try this out for yourselves, be sure to follow Bytown Paranormal on Facebook and Instagram to find out about their public events.
Everyone that knows us, knows that I like to plan, and that I love products and hacks that will facilitate any trip we are taking - even if it's just a day trip to the local beach.
I took the kids for a day of swimming last week and on this trip more than any other, people kept coming up to us to tell us they were admiring our beach set up and asked where we got our stuff. I thought it would be fun to compile a list of our everything we bring with us, along with a wish list of items that I want to purchase next.
While accumulating these items, I made sure (as always) to find a deal. That's why a lot of the things I bought came from Varage Sale or were on liquidation at the end of the season.
And fun fact, our beach kit is small: everything fits in our car (I drive a compact) and is small enough to store in our mess of a garage.
Our Favorite Beach Supplies
Sun Shelter Tent
Mesh Laundry Basket For Sand Toys
Stearns Puddle Jumpers
Cooler Shopping Bag Tote
My Beach Supply Wish List
Here are the items that I want to eventually add to our beach convoy:
What are your must haves and tips for a trip to the beach? Leave me a comment below - maybe I can add what you've got to our next trip!
Melissa is a mom, wife, and early childhood educator who blogs about her journey looking for new experiences for family time.