Why I Hate that my Kids Play Pokémon GO

20160816_212101

Ok, well first off… The number one reason I hate that my kids play Pokémon GO is that they hijack my cell phone. MY cell phone. MY Pokémon GO, MY POKÉMON. I caught myself getting visibly upset the other day with my 8 year old when he told me that he changed the name of some of my Pokémon and I snapped. I didn’t mean to, and I felt really silly for it after, but c’mon, it’s my game.

This leads me to my next issue with this app… This is the FIRST THING that made my 8 year old get the idea in his head that HE NEEDS HIS OWN CELL PHONE. Really?! You need your own cell phone now? He has a Chromo tablet of his own, but unfortunately the Pokemon app doesn’t work on his tablet, so now it’s considered a piece of garbage and inferior to my cell phone that he needs to use every waking moment. Again, MY POKÉMON are being trained by 2 trainers. Isn’t it the same with animals, they should have one leader they respect aka the ALPHA? OK,OK, I’m just kidding with that, but he knows better now than to rename my Pokemon and he does help get my walking miles in to hatch my eggs.

20160816_211823

Another thing that tweaks my nerves is that I am the original Pokémon master. Throwback to the 1997/98 saga when it all started. My son walks around like a know it all because he learns everything about Pokémon through You Tube, and schools me when I forget the names. Son, do you know who you’re talking to? I may be a little rusty, but I still have my original binder complete with 1st editions and a holographic Gyarados… THIS was the original You Tube. My binder filled with trainers and organized by type.

20160816_211123

Lastly, it makes me feel OLD. MY Pokémon are now considered artifacts… Some sell on eBay for upwards of $1k for being that old (ok, maybe just the holographic 1st edition Charizard, but still..) I was a pro back in the mid 90’s and now it’s 20+ years later and I’m feeling nostalgic, and ..old(er).

Alright, I don’t HATE that he plays Pokémon, in fact, I am envious. Finding the joys as a child experiencing Pokémon for the first time. I love it that my kids are so into it. It reminds me of myself, a young Pokémon trainer. I still find myself getting giddy when I see a grayed out Pokemon on my radar and I’m trying to figure out what it might be. I love that he loves it as much as I do… He just better not rename my damn Pokémon! 😋 just kidding.

 

 

Advertisements

My 2015 Holiday Toy List w/GIVEAWAY!

My 2015 Holiday Toy List

1447091763711-1

It’s finally here! This is the most exciting time of year for me. I love shopping, and you don’t get any better deals then the holiday season. Funny enough, I am about 85% done with my shopping for Christmas for my kids. I still have some family members to get for, and I know there will be some great deals coming so I purposely saved the other 15% for this month. How far along are you on your Holiday shopping? Let me know in the comments below!

I have a giveaway on some of these amazing items, so read all the way through to enter!

Keep in mind, my list is based off of my boys that are ages 7 and 3 1/2 years old.

10. Lego Duplo – Lego did a great job releasing these new age legos. They are chunky enough so mommy and daddy don’t step on them (as much) and little hands can grab and play with ease. They also fit on standard Lego tables and bases. My favorite thing about Lego Duplo is that the guides are so simple for my little ones to follow along to build the themes. There are always great deals on these sets online, so keep an eye out!

9. Pie Face Game –  By now, I am sure you’ve seen the adorable video of the little boy playing the new Pie Face Game with his grandfather. I think it was from another country, but they have now brought it to the U.S! They actually use the you tube video as a clip in the commercial which is so cute. This is a game that went viral, and is now going universal! I picked one up online, but we haven’t opened it yet. I am saving it for Christmas to open but I cannot wait. I can envision countless hours of family fun that even my 3 year old will enjoy.

8. Tamagochi – Yes, Tomagochi’s are BACK for 2015! You can find them on Amazon. I am not sure if they are the same one’s from when I was younger, but hey, any little digital pet that you can carry around in your pocket and pass on to a family member to watch while you’re busy is good in my book! Boy or Girl, this will keep them occupied, I promise!

7. Disney/Pixar Movies – My boys have seen tons of Disney movies in their lives, but this year we have not gotten to go to the movies to check out many of the new ones, like Inside Out or Minions. I personally have been itching to watch them, but have held back hehe! I am planning to add at least one of them to our Christmas Eve tradition box to watch on Christmas Eve. They also make great additional stocking-stuffers. There is a great referral deal going on for 5 Blu-Ray movies for $1. See my full review of the Disney Movie Club by clicking the name.

6. Girl Scout Cookie Easy Bake Oven – There are so many things I can say about this one. I have taste tested the cookies from this magical appliance and it is true. They make girl scout cookies. All, year, round. So although this is a gift for your little one, it’s OK if it’s our secret that it’s really for you. Let me know if you’ve tried it yet.

5. Uncle Milton Star Wars Light Saber Crystal Growing Kit – This is something fun for kids to learn how things grow. It is especially great that it is Star Wars theme. With the brand new movie coming out this Holiday season, I foresee this being a big hit for all of the new little star wars fans. It’s great because not only is it a fun learning experience, but after the crystals are grown and dried, it is a great nightlight for their room and can glow red or blue. It does take a little patience because it isn’t something that has instant gratification, it grows over a period of 7 days and then has to dry for 1. Check out the review of this I did with my boys recently by clicking the name above..

4. Magic Moves Rainbow Jam –20151007_17580120151007_165109

There is one toy that hasn’t gotten a lot of the spotlight that I think is great for young children, toddlers especially. The Magic Moves Rainbow Jam. My 3 year old and my 7 year old had so much fun playing with this Educational Insights toy. The toy itself is simple. You turn it on, and it tells you the colors of items within the book. The most fun part about it, is the kids ran all over the house checking out the color of everything including themselves and the dog! It was amazing seeing them run around together with the biggest smiles on their faces. They took it outside afterwards and continued doing the same, running around, pushing the toy to an item, and then laughing at the result. The toy has 2 different options as well, one will sing songs about colors and one will tell you about specific colors. Also by educational insights, there is a Geo Safari Jungle Crew Lab set. This is really cool as well because it has a book that outlines different science projects the children can safely create with parental assistance. I think my boys enjoyed this as we did the “Lava lamp” experiment, but there were a lot that were too involved at the moment we did not try. I plan to open the book up again soon to test some more out with them. Maybe I’ll get some cheap googles and lab coats too!

3. Plasma Car – This is such a cool toy for kids of any age! My 3 year old struggles to push his bike forward using the peddles on his tricycle, but he has mastered the Plasma car. They use their hands and feet to steer and push the Plasma Car to wherever they want to go. It is so simple, yet fun for hours for all of the kids because it is so different then what they’re used to. We plan to take ours to the park soon to see how fast they can go in it since we’ve only used it in the driveway. They also have a toy called “Kick Flipper” which is a nifty little toy that kids can learn and do skateboarding tricks without the risk of falling from skateboard wheels. Check it out by clicking the name!

2. Just Dance 2016 Wii U – This game is really great for the entire family. Sure there are a lot of new age songs, but it’s unlimited fun. Not only can you barrel through stages as the older versions allow, but you can also verse other players via the game pad camera! How cool is that/ Make and create a video of yourself dancing away and getting the crown, and share it with out of town family or friends to verse them, or just pick a random partner to verse. There are some songs I wish were on this, like the popular Whip & Naye Naye, but who knows, maybe they’ll have an update with new popular songs song – Ahem.. hint, hint to Ubisoft! They also have Just Dance Disney 2 which is great for younger children an my 3 year old enjoys learning new moves.

  1. Mario Maker for Wii U – They released this game just a bit too early in my opinion. The hype has died down a bit, and it isn’t on top of everyone’s mind to a to the Christmas list. If your child or significant other has a Wii U and has yet to get the new Mario Maker game, GET IT! This game will bring back memories from your childhood dreams, You can make and create almost every version of Mario, back to #1 in the 80’s. As a child, I’d always imagine what it would be like to create a Mario level, and this is everything I ever thought it would be. Enough about me, my 7 year old has this game and LOVES it. MY husband an my 3 year old love it as well.

I didn’t add this in my top 10 round up, but another great idea for a gift for your child or a friends child is a subscription to Bookroo. I did a review of this a while back, and it is a fun way to extend presents year round. There is a special code you can use for a discount via my original post. You can also unsubscribe at any time. Click here to join now! http://bit.ly/1NrCdmz

OK, so for the giveaway…. Drumroll . . . . . .

I will be giving away;

1 copy each of Just Dance 2016 AND Just Dance Disney 2 for Wii U only

jd16jdd

AND

1 Plasma Car (Color may vary)!

plas

To one lucky reader who enters
HERE

Hylands Halloween Contest

Calling all ghosts, ghouls, gobblins and Elsa’s! ProductImage Costume20rulelogo

Hylands is housing a Halloween Contest!

You can enter here: http://bit.ly/1MnpTET

The three WINNER’s will get;

A $50 TARGET GIFT CARD & one of each:

Hyland’s Baby Nighttime Teething Tablets

Hyland’s Baby Nighttime Tiny Cold Syrup

Hyland’s 4 Kids Cold n Cough

Hyland’s 4 Kids Cold n Cough Nighttime

Hyland’s 4 Kids Bumps n Bruises

Hyland’s Nerve Tonic

Hyland’s Calms Forte

Details;

The costume contest will be judged on the following criteria:

  • Adherence to the Halloween theme (35%)
  • Creativity of photo caption (15%)
  • Originality of costume (e.g., creativity of costume; costume details) (35%)
  • Quality of the photo (e.g., lighting, focus) (15%)

In addition to being able to enter on Facebook, folks will also be able to enter using the #HylandsHalloweenCostumeContest on Instagram and Twitter.  The Contest begins at 9:01 AM Pacific Time (PT) on October 27, 2015 and ends at 11:59 PM PT on November 3, 2015.

People must be the legal guardian of a child to enter his or her picture

Kick Flipper – Like a Skateboard without wheels!

20150903_161132

Check out our review or the Kick Flipper, it’s like a skateboard without wheels! Kids can safely try tricks indoors and outdoors! Even parents can get in on the fun 🙂

For more kids gifts and toy ideas for this season,  check out;

https://www.mykidneedsthat.com/best-gifts-for-13-year-old-girls/ and https://thatsweetgift.com/gifts-ideas-for-women/

Disclaimer: I received this product free in exchange for my opinion. All opinions are my own.

Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day 2015

1439999830661

20THANNUAL ARTHUR ASHE KIDS’ DAY PRESENTED BY HESS

ON SATURDAY, AUGUST 29TH IN FLUSHING MEADOW, QUEENS

ESPN to Host Broadcast for First Time on ESPN2

The annual event takes place Saturday, August 29th at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadow, NY, from 9:30 a.m. – 4 p.m to kick-off the 2015 US Open, which runs from August 31st – September 13th.

 

From 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m., families can enjoy an exciting array of free tennis games geared toward kids, plus live music and attractions taking place throughout the grounds of the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Inside Arthur Ashe Stadium from 1 p.m. – 3 p.m., the live tennis and music show will feature fun exhibition matches and skills competitions with Novak Djokovic and Marin Cilic as well as musical performances by Bea Miller, Kalin and Myles, Natalie La Rose, Jacob Whitesides and American Authors. Additional participants will be announced in the coming weeks.

Stadium show tickets are on sale now through Ticketmaster (1-866-OPEN-TIX), www.usopen.org and at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center box office. American Express is the official card of Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day. General admission promenade tickets cost $10 and loge tickets are $25. Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day will be broadcast nationally by ESPN2 on Sunday, August 30, from 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. (ET). 

POP MUSIC BREAKOUTS BEA MILLER, KALIN AND MYLES, NATALIE LA ROSE AND JACOB WHITESIDES, ALONG WITH CHART-TOPPERS AMERICAN AUTHORS TEAM-UP WITH TENNIS SUPERSTARS NOVAK DJOKOVIC AND REIGNING MEN’S SINGLES US OPEN CHAMPION MARIN CILIC.

image001

World’s Preeminent Tennis & Music Festival Kicks-Off 2015 US Open at 

USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center

Top 5 NJ Family Friendly Lakes

With all of the news about local NJ beaches filled with shark sightings, killer jellyfish, riptides and bacteria, it’s time to look for a family friendly alternative. I have just the right place for your next family getaway – a lake!

I put a list together for you of the top 10 lakes to visit to cool off and relax in the sand this scorching hot Summer!

1. Oxford Furnace Lake – Kauffman Drive, Oxford, New Jersey (908) 453-3098

shell

Lake passes are half off until end of season! free admission for children under 2 yrs old. Picnic tables and grill available for rent at $8/day. Open 11am-6am weekdays.

2. Atsion Lake – Route 206 Shamong (Burlington County) 609-268-0444

11996

Historic Batsto Village is also located within Wharton State Forest, a former bog iron and glassmaking industrial center from 1766 to 1867 that currently reflects the agricultural and commercial enterprises that existed here during the late 19th century. Fees are: Weekdays $5, Weekends $10.

3. Lake Hopatcong – (Morris and Sussex counties)

lake hopatcong

As a child I would enjoy splashing in Lake Hopatcong an remember having so much fun doing water sports. I tried water skiing and would frequently take rides across the lake in my uncles boat. There are tons of things to do at Lake Hopatcong as it’s NJ’s largest lake! You can enjoy water sport rentals, or swim off of the docks.

4. Tomahawk Lake – 155 Tomahawk Trail, Sparta Township, NJ 07871 (973) 398-7777

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERA

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERA

ADULTS $12.00 Weekdays
$14.00 Weekends & Holidays
CHILDREN 11.00 Weekdays
(8 & under) $12.00 Weekends & Holidays

Parents and older children will be swept away by Tomahawk Lake’s wide variety of incredible water slides and rides to choose from such as their 400 foot body slides and speed slide, swan boats, duck boats, paddle boats and bumper boats, the one-person water coaster, Trolley slide and their awesome Rocky Mountain slide that spans over 500 feet!

5. Cheesequake State Park – 300 Gordon Road Matawan, NJ 07747 (732) 566-2161

c5

Swimming is permitted in Hooks Creek Lake from Memorial day weekend through Labor Day weekend while lifeguards are on duty. Visitors will find a beach complex containing changing area, restrooms, a first-aid station and a concession offering refreshments, novelties and beach supplies. Inner tubes, rafts and other flotation devices are not permitted in the swimming area. Only Coast Guard approved life jackets are permitted. Pets are prohibited on the beach. $5 Weekdays, $10 Weekends.

Sesame Place – I can tell you how to get there!

I can tell you how to get, how to get to SESAME PLACE!

It’s 100 Sesame Road Langhorne, PA 19047

spring_map2015(photo via Sesameplace.com)

We have been going to Sesame Place since my oldest was just 2 years old. I remember finding out that the one and only Sesame Place in the country is only 45 minutes from my Central New Jersey home in Langhorne,Pennsylvania and wondering why I have never heard of it before. It’s a fairy tale land for children and adults alike. Characters walk all over and frequently stop to take photos with the children, There are 2 to 3 parades per day, and multiple shows within a few different venues going on all day. Not only are there visually stimulating things for children an adults to enjoy, did you know it is a water park? That is one of the most enjoyable features for our family.

There is ample parking the the lot directly across from the theme park. It is a bit pricey at $17, but keep in mind it is all day parking, and very convenient. You can pay a bit extra an get an even closer spot, or if you’re a season pass member, parking is included.

One thing to know when entering the park, is that you ARE allowed to bring in snacks and drinks in reasonable amounts. You can bring in a small cooler, and toddler snacks. They check your bags at the front gate to make sure you’re not bringing in anything not allowed into the park, like weapons or pepper sprays, so be prepared to have everything ready to be searched so that it goes faster for you.

After you get through the front gate. our first stop is getting a locker, which is located directly to the left of the gift shop. Lockers are, I believe, $16 for the day, plus a $3 refundable deposit, which isn’t too bad. It fits a lot of stuff although they look really small. I always bring my sons stroller, an that holds more stuff I need to keep with me like towels and juice so I don’t have to carry them. There is stroller parking near all of the attractions, so no need to worry about that,

We really enjoy the Teeny Tiny Tidal wave pool and it’s usually one of our first destinations after entering the park and getting a locker. It has an adorable large Ernie face that has kids in awe. The pool itself goes from about 1″ to 2 feet deep, and is large enough for your child to fun around and splash. They do provide life vests for free of charge throughout the park for use. Although they are not required for this area, some parents feel more at ease with their child wearing one, so just know they ARE there hung up next to the lifeguard in the second section of the pool by the sprinkler. This are is perfect for little ones and toddlers. There are chairs that are available to lounge out on as well in this section.

One thing I never noticed until my most recent trip this month, is the train cars to the left of the Teeny Tiny Tidal wave pool (directly under the giant duck water slide). The mix an match twiddle tracks. They are adorable hand propelled train type cards on a metal track. They are colorful and follow a small track through a tunnel. Tucked away in the corner, there are tables where parents can watch their children safely enjoy this attraction. My 3 year old is so into trains he has a blast in this small area an didn’t want to leave it!

Another first for us during this trip was riding the Sky Splash. There’s no missing this attraction. It is huge and has a large 8ft tall Rubber Ducky on top of it. The kids were too small in the past to all go on it, so we held off but during this visit we all walked up the 6 flights of stairs (yes it IS a hike!) and fit into the 8 person tube with a 1 year old, a 3 year old, two 7 year olds, and my aunt and I. The little ones all had a blast! One thing I must tell you, because they don’t tell you on the ride is HOLD ON! There are sections of the ride where I was literally bumped out of my seat and me and my 3 year old tumbled over. Luckily, we were OK, but someone can get hurt on this if not sitting properly. There was a slight look of terror on my little ones face but he let out the largest scream when we got to the bottom and yelled “Woohoo we did it!”. I wish I ha video of it. We did opt to go on it one more time and my little one was NOT in favor of this. He put up a fight but he enjoyed it after all was said and done.

The next area we hit was Cookie’s Monster Land. This is where all of the dry attractions are and we always have a blast. There are so many kid friendly rides, and also a toddler area where parents can take a moment to relax. There is a bouncy bridge castle above that older children can run across and bounce on while the little ones are in an enclosed safe area with foam blocks to build and tunnels to explore.

Most of the rides in this area children over 42″ can ride alone, but I still went on whatever I could with them. My 3 year old was obsessed with the flying Elmo Fish since he loves planes. He made me go on it over and over!My 7 year old and 7 year old nephew went on the large swing and loved them. They went on it twice actually. That was the great thing about going on a weekday, there were no lines!!!

There are multiple places to eat at Sesame Place, and usually we choose Elmo’s Eatery. You get a cute souvenir plate an cut with each kids meal. I always get a kids meal too because it’s a little pricey and the kid’s meal is more then enough for me. There is the Dine with me area, but we haven’t done that yet although you can find deals online for it sometimes. Also, if you’re a season pass holder, I think it’s included or deeply discounted.

38201_1536873382306_7629270_n

Just like other theme parks, there are face painting stations, balloons, gift shops, caricature stations, and stands to play. Here is hubby ecstatic about his caricature he got of himself LOL! This was 5 years ago an it still graces his walls.

253459_2167595149956_1854496_n

After eating, we went to the Elmo Live show. This is the same show I’ve seen numerous times, but every time it keeps the children captivated! It is so adorable to see the kids have fun at their own little concert. Dancing in front of the stage and singing along to songs they know like ABC’s and 123’s. I have seen other shows here as well over the years including Hip Hop Harry, The Imagination Movers, and Elmo Rocks. They have multiple venues and show times and you can check out any special shows at Sesameplace.com because if they’re special shows other then the normal ones, they’re an extra fee usually online like $10 but you do have to reserve a seat usually.

Lastly, the parade! You’ll want to set up a bit before the parade to get a close up seat. Usually people will start laying own their towels or planting their strollers along the main street an hour before, The parade is adorable with all of the characters coming up to greet the children, a screen showing the crowd, and even sometimes pulling children into the parade to complete a dance number or sing along. The theme this year is Birthday Party since it’s Sesame Place’s 35th Birthday Anniversary. They even replaced the character shrubs at the entrance with a huge birthday cake.

Reminders;

  • Bring sunscreen and flip flops/sandals! It is very sunny and the blacktop is all over and very very hot.
  • Bring your camera!
  • Check out online discounts before you go. It is ALWAYS cheaper to order online then at the gate.

Suggestions;

  • Get a 2 Day pass at minimum. It’s only about $10 more and includes another day of fun making each visit basically 50% off! Trust me, you WILL want to go back.
  • Bring a hat for little ones to keep the sun out of their eyes so they can see the fun stuff without the glare.
  • Wear comfortable clothes/cover ups. Most people just walk around in their bathing suits.

Fun Fact; Sesame Place has a Sunny Day Guarantee and if it rains for an hour or more consecutively during your visit, they will give you a pass to return!

Don’t be fooled by the name. Parents will have just as much fun as the kids!!

Right now, you can get a ticket for just $35 online for Sesame Place’s 35th Birthday! This is good from July 27-7/30!

FB_IMG_1436886730763

Enjoy!