Hot Holiday Toys List


Hot Holiday Toys on my Radar this Year

Every year, there seem to be more and more toys promoted, and each one is more and more expensive. It’s hard for me to think about piling on more toys into the already endless seeming piles of toys my boys already have.With that being said, Santa is still coming to town, and the boys are expecting to get toys…and electronics. So what are my top picks this 2016 season?

Let’s start with stocking stuffers. What is a stocking stuffer to me? I would say 80% of the stocking contents is candy, keychains, chapsticks, and in my family, there has usually been a scratch-off or 2 in there for fun.

This year, add a video game that the family can enjoy, like Just Dance 2017 that was just released this month. It is tons of fun for everyone and the fun keeps on coming with online songs to unlock, and battles against other players. My boys are so excited to get their Just Dance game for the Wii U every year!

The other family fun item that you may want to drop into your kids stocking this year is KidzBop 33.Yes, there are 33 of these fun little cd’s now, and they do not stop there! You can also add in KidzBop Holiday CD which we have had on repeat since November 1st! I love KidzBop because it ties in the music I like, with songs my kids learn to love, and then when the radio is on, we all find ourselves singing either way.

Movies are great to throw in there too. Some new great movies out are Finding Dory, The Jungle Book, and Zootopia. Check out my Disney Movie Club review to check out if it’s something that might work for your family. It would be great to be able to wrap up the classics as well this year.

Throwing in a stuffed animal on top to hang out always gives the final touch to our stockings. This year, for my boys it’s all about Five Nights at Freddy’s and Pokemon so I am sure they’ll find a home in stockings this year.

Now for under the tree..

Everyone knows the hardest things to find this year are Hatchimals and the new NES Classic Console. Unfortunately, I think majority of kids will not be waking up to these this Christmas morning, and my kids are probably among that group. It’s frustrating not being able to get things for your kids that they want, but remember, there are things they do not yet know they want, but will love it when they get it.

Two totally different price points, but equally face brightening on Christmas morning, these are the 2 that my boys will be excited to get this Christmas..

Samsung Galaxy Tablet – An inexpensive, great alternative to an apple Ipad. I know I am an Android person, and my kids are already playing games on my phone so the switch to their own tablet should be an easy one. At only $200 for a 10″ screen, it’s much more affordable then the $800+ price point of the Ipad.

Pie Face Showdown – How many of you had a blast with Hasbro’s Pie Face this year? Such a simple game and so much fun. The awesome thing is, the fun doesn’t stop there. Most kids are drooling at the commercial for Pie Face Showdown this season, and it’s only$19.99 at most stores. Toys R Us has a deal that you can get a  free Pie Face T-shirt if you purchase $30+ of Hasbro items.

A company that flies under the radar that I think deserves some eyes on them is educational insights. If you have a kid of any gender, any age, there is something for them. The “Build your own Helicopter” is so perfect for preschool aged kids. It lets kids use an almost real power tool, with no worry of them getting hurt. The bright colors leave them wanting to play with it over and over. My son got this a month ago and has still touched it every day since then at one point or another. Once he’s done with it, I am thinking about giving it to his preschool classroom because I know it’ll get a lot of attention an help fuel those little brains.

Another great item from educational insights worth looking into is the game “Ready-Set-Woof“. It is so simple that preschoolers can play it without needing to use instructions, but at the same time, it is hours of fun for older kids. My 8 year old said he didn’t want to play it since it was a baby game, but when I convinced him to try it out when his friends were over, they played it for at least an hour with loud laughs and fun competition.


If you want to be the best gift giver this year, I suggest you go on and pick anything from their site. They’re such cool, unique toys that are actually still educational although the kids will never notice!

Getting back into the video game world, the new ones out that my older son wants is Mario Color Splash for the Wii U and The new Pokemon Sun and Moon games for 3DS. These are probably going to be at the top of most kids lists this year. Since we probably will not be able to score an NES Classic, we still need some of that Mario in our lives.

Sonic merchandise is coming back in with a boom too.I love seeing my old past time joys come back to life within my children.

Speaking of bringing the past back, kids this year will love anything from Trolls, including build a bear which has 3 different Trolls able to be made with love this season. We went and saw the movie, and had to go build the characters right after at the mall.

Those are just the items that are sticking out to me this year.What are your kids most hoping to see under the tree this year?

Review of the 2016 Mazda 6


This past week I had the privilege of testing out the Mazda 6 Grand Touring from DriveShop. That gave me something else to be thankful for during the Thanksgiving week!

This beautiful deep red color I had is called “Soul Red”. I was never a big red car person. I mean, they’re nice, but I usually go for the black or beige colors. Wow. Wow is all I can say. I felt so luxurious and stylish driving around in this beautiful red car. I had so many compliments on it everywhere I went. It is for sure a show stopper.

Surprisingly affordable, the Starting MSRP for this model is $21,495. The navigation system and sirius satallite radio come standard in this vehicle at no extra charge which is a bonus!

Mileage is 28city/40 hwy which is what you’d expect from a sedan.12359812_10208066777047744_1874810296_o

The inside of this one is not far behind the luxury of the outside. In fact its right on par. Having a family of 4, and both kids being in car & booster seats, space is always a number one concern. That is the reason I went to a “mom mobile” aka an SUV sometime back. The Mazda 6 was shockingly roomy an fir us all with room to spare. The boys loved it an called it “The red car”. I thought my 3 year old was literally going to cry when I had to give it back! There was a small sunroof that made it feel that much more open and let some extra light in. It was cold an the heated seat feature got a lot of use! The interior color in this model is Black/Espresso. The black makes it easy to hide dirt generated from little boys! LOL!

Did I mention that the driver seat has a memory button that remembers just how you like your seat? Two of them to be exact. How convenient because I hate getting in the car after my husband has the seat pushed all the way back and I can’t reach the pedals! Pushing 1 or 2 lets the seat do all of the work to get it back to exactly how I like it, and quickly.


The trunk space is another thing that shocked me. It fits almost as much as my Mazda CX-7 does and that’s an SUV. It isn’t too high, but the depth of it makes you actually have to step back and figure out how it goes back so far!


The active driving display, or as I like to call it, the futuristic dashboard is one of the features that makes the Mazda 6 one of the top rated safety vehicles of 2015. It has something I haven’t seen before, which is the ability to tell you when you’re riding far enough away from the car in front of you. It’s funny because that is one of the things my husband always criticized about my driving. He says I tailgate the cars in front of me often… I don’t agree, but this feature sure helps me be mindful of how far back I should be to be at a safe distance. The other safety features are the back up camera, the blind spot alert on the side view mirrors, and the drifting lane alert. It’s a little hard to see in a photo because it’s through a glass, but here is the active driving display showing some of what I covered above.



After having this vehicle for a week during the holidays, it really made me think about how I’d love to have this vehicle even though it is a sedan. I do miss it, as do my kids. It is certainly a contender in any of our choices for a sedan in the future if we decide to go that route. Mazda has outdone itself again!

The warranty it comes with is 36 month/36,000 miles bumper to bumper. 60 month/60,000 mile powertrain warrantly.



Dr Doris Day Interview & AmLactin Gift Set Giveaway

Winter is Coming! Be Ready…


There is a vicious cycle in the Winter when it comes to skin care. There are more sickness’s going around, especially if you have children, and you wash your hands more often to avoid contracting and passing around germs. During the winter months, the cold, brisk air tends to cry and brittle your hands that are oil-less from washing them so often. It was never an issue for me until I became a mom. I wash my hands out of habit, and do it a lot. Last year, my hands were so dry and cracked, and by the time I HAD to fix it, nothing would work well enough to fix it, only cover it up temporarily. I wish I found these products sooner.

I have something to ease your mind. It’s called AmLactin. It’s  a line of skin care products developed by dermatologist Dr. Doris Day. I was fortunate enough to pick her brain in an interview with her. See below what she thinks about Winter skin damage and how her products are formulated to work against it.

After you read through the interview, be sure to enter the giveaway and win your own gift set of AmLactin (Valued at over $100) to try it out for yourself!

unnamed (1)Dr. Doris Day, Dermatologist

  1. What is a prominent misconception people have regarding winter skin revitalization?

Many people think that the secret to hydrated skin is to drink gallons of water. Unfortunately, drinking water isn’t going to make much difference when it comes to the very outer layers of your skin. Drinking water is still important for your overall health and for the deeper layers of your skin (water gives them firmness), but don’t expect it to transform your complexion from the surface. Outer skin layers need protection and attention from the outside with the right moisturizers and antioxidants, and of course sun protection.

  1. What distinguishes the AmLactin collection of skin care products from other brands?

AmLactin uses gentle alpha-hydroxy acids which work double duty on parched winter skin. They gently exfoliate dead skin cells that can build up, thereby encouraging natural cell renewal. These multitasking alpha-hydroxy acids are also naturally occurring humectants, meaning they attract water molecules to help skin look and feel hydrated. Plus, you can find AmLactin products at your local drugstore. You don’t have to break the bank to have beautiful skin.

  1. Which factors are most important to you in determining whether to recommend a skin care product?

I always look for science and clinical data about both safety and efficacy. I also ask myself, “Is this something I would use?” If I can unequivocally answer “Yes” to this question, I know that this product is safe, effective, and worthy of a recommendation. Any product I recommend has undergone rigorous clinical research and has proven results.

  1. What are some of your favorite AmLactin products and why? 

As we get older, the skin’s natural renewal cycle slows down and can cause dead cells to build up on the skin’s surface, giving it a rougher texture and dull appearance, and oil glands become less active, which can make it harder to retain moisture in the skin. Ceramides, a key component of your skin’s outer layer, may no longer be as plentiful, which can leave skin dry and vulnerable to environmental factors.

That’s why I love AmLactin Cerapeutic Restoring Body Lotion. It’s an all-over body lotion that combines exfoliating and hydrating alpha-hydroxy acids with three essential ceramides for soft, healthy-looking skin. As a busy mom and professional, I appreciate that it keeps my skin hydrated all day long.

Especially during the winter months, I also like to pamper my feet and my hands with AmLactin Ultra Hydrating Body Cream. It’s rich enough to penetrate the thick skin on the bottom of the foot, and its alpha-hydroxy therapy can take heels from cracked and callused to soft and smooth with regular use.

I like that AmLactin Ultra works just as well as a hand cream, too. With how often I have to wash my hands as doctor, they can easily become cracked and itchy—especially when exposed to harsh New York City winds. AmLactin Ultra restores lost moisture to repair and soften severely dry skin.

  1. What is the most common cause of skin deterioration during the winter season?

Winter skin just doesn’t get a break. It’s either being blasted by cold, dry outdoor air or hot, dry indoor air, which is why it can be so difficult to keep skin hydrated. Skin also commonly suffers from sun damage in the winter. With UV rays being reflected off the snow, many people don’t realize that a day at the slopes can be just as damaging as a day at the beach. We also tend to take long, hot showers in the winter, and this can really dry out our skin.

Want to give it a try? Win this gift set valued at over $100!


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Good Luck! Please let me know below what product you currently use to heal your Winterized skin!