Posts Tagged ‘disney’

Yo Ho Ho And A Pirate Treasure Map Cake

Thursday, March 27th, 2014

Ok, for real, officially, this is the LAST YEAR of the Epic Birthday Party for Evan. I think 5 years of big fancy at-home parties is enough. He’s at an age now where he’d probably rather go somewhere fun like the bowling alley anyway. Plus this year I had to make an all-or-nothing decision on inviting school friends. I went with ALL (13 kids) and have gotten three RSVPs so far. Fingers crossed the five kids who didn’t RSVP and still show up don’t bring a dozen siblings. Fingers also crossed it’s warm enough for the dig-for-treasure station to be outside so all that sand doesn’t end up on my living room floor. In preparation for the party, I had a very deep discussion with Evan regarding cakes.

Me: Evan, what kind of cake do you want for your birthday?
Evan: A pirate cake!
Me: Right, OK, I figured that. But what KIND of pirate cake?
Evan: A BIG pirate cake!

Our trusty local grocery store didn’t have a pirate cake in their book so I begrudgingly decided to make one. My previous attempts at fancy cakes have not gone well and 10 minutes on Pinterest made it clear most pirate cakes are FAR, FAR outside my ability. Luckily there are easier pirate cake ideas than a 3 masted tall ship complete with fondant pirates.

Like a pirate treasure map cake!

pirate treasure map cake

  This weekend the kids and I picked up some candy and frosting and made a “practice” cake. Although, is there really such a thing as a practice cake? It’s cake. It’s ALWAYS time for cake. But I’m glad I did it because I learned a few valuable things:
1. The correct order for frosting is white frosting, “sand”, blue frosting. The sand is actually graham cracker crumbs and it was impossible to keep it off the “water”.
2. Candy is bigger than it looks. It’s hard to draw delicate lines with big chunky candy. For the next cake I might do more in frosting.
3. Sticking stuff on the cake is harder than it looks. My pirate kept falling over until I put some frosting on his feet. I’m glad I didn’t try to add the palm trees I had imagined.
4. K.I.S.S. Keep it simple, stupid! It’s a cake for a birthday party – as long as it involves frosting the kids are going to be THRILLED.

pirate cake_-3  

Materials: Cake (from a box!), graham cracker crumbs, icing, gold sprinkles, frosting (I whipped one container with blue food coloring in my mixer), yellow M&Ms, root beer barrels, Twizzler bites, and Captain Hook and Tick Tock Croc stolen from the toy box. The root beer barrels crack me up because I think “But why is the rum gone?!” every time.

pirate treasure map cake

pirate treasure map cake

I added the pirate flag and sword from my extensive collection of pirate stuff I’ve purchased for the party next weekend.

pirate treasure map cake

Both kids’ mouths might be stained blue for the next month, but it’s worth it for my little pirates!

pirate treasure map cake

 

From the world of Peter Pan, check out the all-new Tinkerbell movie, Disney’s The Pirate Fairy. Available on Blu-ray and Digital HD on April 1. And you can learn more about the Disney Fairies on their Facebook page.

Related posts:

BlogHer Photo A Day
A Healthy Competitive Spirit {And a $100 Giveaway}
Game Night Get Together with Ellio's Pizza

Never Boring {$100 Giveaway!}

Thursday, March 20th, 2014
Before I had kids I was bored a lot. I don’t think I realized I was bored – I probably thought I enjoyed taking long naps and sleeping until noon and spending all my money on shoes. But it turns out I don’t actually enjoy any of those things all that much.

Well, I mean, obviously I still like naps. Everyone likes naps (except the children who actually should be taking them).

fun kids

fun kids-4

The first year after I got married we lived in Virginia Beach. Despite being young and thin (siiiiiigh) and living directly on the beach, I HATED it. It felt like there was nothing to do. All the guys E worked with either had kids or were trying to have kids (as a 23 year old with no children I was sort of an anomaly in the MilSpouse community). I remember going to a lot of street fairs or walking down to the cheesy beach shops or driving past the aquarium and thinking “If I had kids, this would be way more fun.”

Here in Connecticut I hear a lot of the younger, single guys complain about nothing to do. But since I have kids, I STRONGLY disagree. We have memberships to the aquarium, the seaport, the children’s museum and the science center. We walk to parades, or the library or the cheesy little carnivals downtown. My kids have favorite restaurants and favorite stores and favorite playgrounds. They go to school and take lessons and have a way more active social life than I’ve had since I was in high school.

I LOVE it.

fun kids-10

fun kids-11

I’m not someone who is ultra-motivated by nature. If I was still only responsible for myself (and my husband, I guess, although he’s not quite as helpless as children), I would spend a lot more time sleeping and feeling lonely. Kids don’t let you do that. They keep you up, they’re ALWAYS talking, they demand you go outside and see the world. You can’t avoid talking to anyone at the grocery store or wear ear buds all the time or even avoid smiling. I am nicer, friendlier and happier now that I have kids, and it has definitely made me a better person.

Last week after swim class, I took the kids to Panera for an early dinner and “special treat” for both being brave and learning new skills (Caroline can retrieve things from the bottom pool step, Evan learned how to do a sitting dive). I herded them into line where they both placed their orders with no help from me, then stormed the dessert counter to choose their cupcakes. The teenage girl behind the counter said “They’re so cute. I bet having kids is never boring.”

I smiled and said “No, I am never, ever bored.”

fun kids-12

fun kids-13

fun kids-14

fun kids-15

fun kids-16

To celebrate the hilarious and heartfelt comedy Delivery Man, starring Vince Vaughn, being released Blu-ray, DVD and Digital HD March 25, BlogHer will be awarding to one of my readers a $100 Visa gift card.

To enter, just leave a comment telling me: How have your kids changed you for the better?

You can pre-order your copy of Delivery Man today or check out the Facebook page for more information on the film, which chronicles the story of a man who unexpectedly discovers he has 533 children. (And I thought just having a THIRD baby was a big deal!)

 

Sweepstakes Rules: No duplicate comments. You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods: Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry. This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winner will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected. The Official Rules are available here. This sweepstakes runs from 3/20/14 – 4/19/14. Be sure to visit the Delivery Man page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ reviews and find more chances to win!

 

Related posts:

Ambu-launched! I Need Your Help.
My Week(174) in iPhone Photos
Backyard Campfire Fun

My Week(159) in iPhone Photos

Sunday, November 17th, 2013

I set a goal for myself to take more interesting, photographically complex, technically strong iPhone photos, since those are all things I’m working on in my real photography. I failed. Maybe next week.

Sunday:

Processed with VSCOcam

Waiting in line is boring. Thank goodness there are benches for lounging.

Processed with VSCOcam

The Carle <3

Processed with VSCOcam

Practicing their cheers

Monday:

Processed with VSCOcam

The ticket cashier printed extra “tickets” for the kids and the ticket puncher punched their “tickets” for them. We love Metro-North.

Processed with VSCOcam

You’ve seen this one, but my phone died in NY so I didn’t get many more.

Processed with VSCOcam

Donut the size of his head.

Tuesday:

Processed with VSCOcam

She’s obsessed with my glasses

Processed with VSCOcam

Winter is coming. So is the bus.

Processed with VSCOcam

Modeling her awesome hat and sweater.

Wednesday:

Processed with VSCOcam

I have no idea what we did on Wednesday. Teeth brushing might have been the only thing.

Processed with VSCOcam

Their new favorite bedtime book

Thursday:

Processed with VSCOcam

Not very excited to be outside in the cold

Processed with VSCOcam

Ignoring me.

Processed with VSCOcam

Matching Christmas jams (just a little early)

Friday:

Processed with VSCOcam

We are totally going back to do this again

Processed with VSCOcam

My new favorite spot for evening pictures

Processed with VSCOcam

Playground time before it gets too cold

Saturday:

Processed with VSCOcam

DO I LOOK CUTE MOMMY?

Processed with VSCOcam

First pony tail requires two pictures.

Processed with VSCOcam

Bounce house birthday = kids who slept really great

I cannot even believe how fast November is going. I have less than a month until Caroline’s 3rd birthday party (princess themed this year!) and I’ve done almost nothing. THAT IS SO UNLIKE ME. I don’t even have invitations yet. If anyone has this work-life balance thing figured out let me know, because so far I suck at it – and I can do 75% of my work from my couch.

Related posts:

DIY Patio Makeover
My Week(153) in iPhone Photos
My Week(324) in iPhone Photos

Picture Your Dreams, Make Them Come True

Thursday, October 3rd, 2013

I am officially 2 months into this crazy photography business idea and I am busier and happier than I’ve been in years. Convincing people to pay you to do what you love is old, cliched advice…but it’s repeated so often because it’s true. Never do I think “Oh no, I have a photo session today.” I always, always think “Yes! New people! New location! New light! I am so lucky!”

ginger snaps pictures collage

It’s been a long road to discover what I wanted to be when I grew up. Until I showed up to my first day of Biology 111 in college I was convinced I was going to be a marine biologist. Then I wanted to be a journalist, a tv anchor, a Pilates instructor, a human resources manager, a house flipper, a real estate agent, a thrift shop owner, and some sort of unnamed, unspecific job that involved being semi-famous and doing glamorous stuff all day. I was somewhat successful at a few of those, incredibly unsuccessful at others and never got past the just-dreaming-about-it stage of most. But once the idea to start Ginger Snaps Pictures took over a tiny piece of my brain, I couldn’t let it go.

Am I still terrified on almost a daily basis? Totally. What if the day gets crazy and I flake out on an appointment? What if I drop my camera and it breaks in the middle of a session? What if my client hates every single picture? What if my computer and my back up and my back up back up all fail? What if I’m charging too much? What if I’m charging too little? What if I am the worst photographer ever and everyone is just too nice to tell me?

Believing in myself might be my biggest challenge. It’s hard not to compare myself constantly to other businesses. There is always going to be someone better than I am. Always. My goals are just to work hard, constantly improve and make my clients happy. It’s really not that different from parenting – except the clients are a lot LESS demanding and easier to please! It’s super cheesy to say that because I believe in myself I’m making my dreams come true, but it’s the truth.

Working hard to make your dreams come true no matter what stands in your way is also the lesson in Monsters University.
collage 1 Monsters University-3

Monsters University-5

Monsters University-7

Monsters University-8

This is the face I make every time someone wants to hire me.

We’re big Monsters fans in our house – we own the first one and I took the kids to see the second in the theater this summer. We watch a lot of happily-ever-after-type movies, so learning that hard work, determination and doing your best are worthy endeavors too is something I’d like to emphasize. Of course the message is cleverly hidden in an adorable, hilarious movie that my 2 year old, 4 year old and myself all liked equally. Plus I hope the kids can see that lesson in real life as my business grows. Fingers crossed!

You can pre-order your copy of Monsters University here! And to celebrate the release, Disney is going to give one of my readers their very own Monsters University Blu-ray Combo Pack PLUS a $50 Visa gift card. To enter, leave a comment telling me about a time you believed in yourself to achieve your dream.   

 

Rules:
No duplicate comments.
You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:
a) Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post
b) Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “”#SweepstakesEntry””; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post”
c) Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post
d) For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.
This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.
The Official Rules are available here.
This sweepstakes runs from 10/3/13 – 11/3/13.
Be sure to visit the Monsters University Page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ reviews and find more chances to win!

 

Related posts:

Martha Stewart only has ONE kid
Newborn Picture Extravaganza!
My Week(341) in iPhone Photos

Look At This Stuff, Isn’t It Neat? {GIVEAWAY!!!!!}

Saturday, September 21st, 2013

Please excuse the exclamation points and the fact that it is apparently giveaway week here on my blog (I haven’t done any in months and then BAM! THREE AT ONCE!) but I had to resort to Twitter begging for this one and I don’t regret it one bit.

THE LITTLE MERMAID Diamond Edition 2-Disc Blu-ray+DVD Combo Pack with Digital Copy

How would you like to win THE LITTLE MERMAID Diamond Edition 2-Disc Blu-ray+DVD Combo Pack with Digital Copy? Oh, a whole bunch? That’s what I thought.

For the record, Caroline has never actually seen The Little Mermaid. My copy is on VHS (still have it though!) and our library doesn’t have a copy from the last release Disney did. They do, however, have The Little Mermaid 2, the prequel in which Ariel’s mother dies on screen and we’ve seen it one million times. We also have four different Ariel dolls and as of yesterday Caroline has started asking for an Ariel dress. which I will probably cave into and buy her immediately. Because how do you tell your tiny red-head toddler she can’t be the best of all the princesses? You can’t. Or at least I can’t. Maybe you’re dead inside.

Check out The Little Mermaid website, where you can watch clips and play games, including Ariel’s Dress-Up, which I definitely did NOT play on my own for 20 minutes last night. Nope.

To enter to win your very own Diamond Edition 2-Disc Blu-ray+DVD Combo Pack with Digital Copy: Leave a comment on this post. For inspiration, let me start… “Look at this stuff, isn’t it neat?” (YOUR TURN!)

Official stuff: 1 entry per eligible household, winner must be 18 or older and a resident of US or Canada (no PO Box, please). Giveaway ends October 3rd, winner will be drawn with Random.org. I get my own copy in exchange for hosting this giveaway, which is why I am doing it. It’s been in my Amazon cart for MONTHS and now I can exchange the movie for the mermaid dress-up set. All opinions are my own.

Related posts:

The Blographer Event Ticket Giveaway!
Caroline: Some Number Of Months That Is More Than 24
My Week(247) in iPhone Photos
Clickin' Moms
Wayfair Homemakers
Get Adobe Flash player