Thursday, October 30, 2014

Wine With Friends - Full of It

Gina is a fabulous and funny mom to two and writer who has been featured on Scary Mommy and Huff Post Parents. I was fortunate enough to get to know Gina this year, her blog Full Of It is always filled with humor, fun and a great place to find new kids music. Please show Gina some love and check her out on Facebook.

20 Thoughts That Run Through My Head In Car Line

The pick-up car line at the end of the school day is like the purgatory of Elementary
School. I’m stuck in my car, boxed in between the mini-vans and the I-just-like-
fancy-cars-and-in-no-way-am-I-having-a-midlife-crisis sports cars, with no where to
go, waiting for my children to crawl in to my car.

It can feel like an eternity.

Plenty of thoughts that vacillate between the banal and the bitter flood through
my head in those long minutes I sit in the driver’s seat. Maybe you have the same
experience, and if you’re like me, those thoughts bounce all over the place like a
pinball machine on crack.

thoughts in car line

Here are just a few of mine:

I should have left my house earlier, because this line is way too long.

Why couldn’t my kids take the bus?

Oh, look! There’s the PTA President. I think I’ll just sink further down in to my seat
to avoid eye contact, because I refuse to volunteer for the bake sale again this year.

I’m over this Iggy Azalea song.

I really need to get a manicure, because my cuticles look like I have been digging my
way out of prison.

What is this stain on my pants?

Mister, breathing down my bumper isn’t going to get your child in to your car any
time sooner. Give me some space, or I’ll be forced to become passive-aggressive and
take my sweet time moving up after the car in front of me.

I really need to clean out my car.

I know phones are banned in carline for safety and being present when you greet
your kid and all that, but I could totally get to that next level in Candy Crush right
about now.

What kind of name is Iggy, anyway?

T-minus three hours until dinner. What the heck am I going to make? Can a bowl of
tortilla chips be defined as a meal if I pair it with queso?

I wonder how well a food truck that went down the line, offering caffeine and sugar
to parents waiting in car line would do as a business venture?

Did I put on deodorant this morning? Nope. I don’t remember doing that. Oops.

Mental note: do not wave at anyone.

Do I have any snacks in the car? Because Mommy needs some Cheez Its.

Five bucks says my daughter will not be making it to the car with the raccoon Beanie
Boo she just had to take in with her this morning. Wait, who am I making this bet
with? Wow, I spend too much time alone during the day.

Would it kill you, car in front of me, to move up just five more feet so I can squeeze
in to the pick-up curb?

What is that smell?

I think that’s the kid that’s been kicking a soccer ball in to my son’s face every day at
recess. Resist the urge to yell at him. Resist the urge!

There are my little cuties! And look, the squabbling has started already, before
they’ve even poured in to the car! Still, these two make this whole car line nonsense
worth it.

How many years until they can drive themselves?

Gina Jacobs Thomas holds the titles of wife, mom, former professional modern dancer, writer, snack connoisseur, pillow fort architect, and house D.J. Her home turf is Full Of It, where she writes about parenting through life with a children's music soundtrack, and has been featured on The Huffington Post, Scary Mommy, Mamapedia and In the Powder Room. Gina resides in Ohio with her family, where she resists the call to become a Buckeye fan. Follow her on Facebook or holler at her on Twitter

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The Truth About Family Vacations

The truth about family vacations is they aren't always what we see on Facebook or Instagram . They aren't all smiles and perfectly framed moments. 

Cinderella Castle

The truth about family vacations is that they are a lot of work. Someone has to do all the planning and the packing and the reminding to not forget all the many things everyone needs. And even when someone loves to plan it's still work.

Captain Jack Pirate Show
Watching Capt. Jack Sparrow

The truth about family vacations is sometimes people get sick on vacation, how dare they. Like last year when my husband was slammed with a stomach bug or this year when Jack threw up on a John on the bus ride to the airport( thankfully the trip was over).

Harmony Barbershop
Getting a faux hawk at Harmony Barber Shop

The truth about family vacations is sometimes the plans don't go right, sometimes people complain, sometimes even the best ideas don't pan out. Sometimes there are unexpected tears and kids that don't want to cooperate and parents that push too hard. 

Toy Story Characters Holywood Studios
Green Army Men from Toy Story

The truth about family vacations is that you will get home exhausted and wonder if everyone had a good time. If everyone appreciates all that went into it.

Chip and Dale Epcot
Meeting Chip and Dale in Epcot

And then you will look at the pictures and you will see the smiles and the laughter and the hints of joy. You will see 8 days that flew by too fast, and that you couldn't do it all. You will see that everyone had a good time and the small failures and complaints will fade away. 

Epcot Duffy Bear
Looking out over Epcot while waiting to meet Duffy

You see the thing about family vacations is they aren't always perfect but they are always memorable. And that some day you will look back and smile and laugh and maybe even get a bit nostalgic for all those little things that didn't go just quite right. 

Wreck it Ralph Hollywood Studios
Meeting Wreck it Ralph

Disclaimer (cause my family reads this sometimes) our last trip was great, this post was inspired by having talked to a few friends and we were all saying how some aspects of family vacations are just hard, ya know. 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Wubble Bubble Ball

This is a sponsored post. I was compensated for this post, as always all thoughts, opinions and cute kid are my own. 

Some toys just look fun and the Wubble Bubble Ball is one of them. Seriously who wouldn't want to play with a giant bubble ball? One of the things that amazes me about this ball is how much it looks like a bubble from the consistency of the ball to the sheerness of it, you really feel like you are playing with a giant bubble. 

But in order to get to the fun and giggles of playing with the Wubble Ball first you have to inflate it, fortunately the Wubble Ball comes with it's own pump .  However it is still a bit of work to get it inflated, and I hope you can learn from a few of the mistakes I made while inflating the ball.

Tips for Inflating the Wubble Bubble Ball
  • Have someone help you.
  • The pump requires 4 D batteries. 
  • Don't be afraid to push the valve in all the way, it needs to go in pretty far. I made the mistake and only had it half way in and the ball took forever to inflate.
  • Look through the ball you can see when the tube is fully in the valve to inflate.
  • If it's not inflating in 3 min you likely don't have the valve all the way in.
  • If you still need help check out this how to video on You tube

Jack was so excited to play with the Wubble Bubble Ball and fully inflated it's too big for indoor play, at least in my house. So we took it outside . Jack loved chasing it around the yard, bouncing it off his head and watching it fly across the air. His giggling was infectious. When tossed or kicked the Wubble Bubble Ball moves like a bubble and less like a ball which makes it a little hard to predict which way it will go and that definitely adds to the fun. Having said that do not leave you Wubble Bubble Ball outside unattended because like a real bubble if it's windy it will fly away. When we weren't looking ours took off over the fence and we found it in the bushes.

Things we liked about Wubble Bubble Ball:
  • Durability it's much more durable than I expected .
  • Size my son loved that it is nearly as big as him.
  • Fun! The ball got us outside and moving around. It made for lots of laughs.
  • It comes with a pump . 
  • That it looks and moves like a real bubble

Things to know about the Wubble Bubble Ball:
  • Target selected Wubble Bubble Ball as a top toy for the 2014 Holiday Season. 
  • Wubble Bubble Ball is a family toy of the year award winner. 
  • Wubble Bubble Ball has won numerous toy awards including an Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Best Toy Award, a National Parenting Center Seal of Approval, a Mr. Dad Approved Award, a Parent's Choice Award, and the Dr. Toy Best 100 Picks award and more. 
  • Wubble Bubble Ball is not indestructible but they have a lifetime replacement guarantee. It costs $6.99 to replace a Wubble under the guarantee.
  • Take care not to damage your Wubble Bubble Ball while inflating. It might be necessary to use a little bit of oil (whatever you have in your kitchen) to insert the pump into the Wubble Ball the first time. 

To me one of the coolest things about this toy is that NSI president Frank Landi was inspired to create Wubble Bubble Ball by his children's wish to have a real bubble to play with. He developed the Wubble Bubble Ball to keep his children's love for active play alive. It's pretty cool to know that this toy was totally inspired by kids, which is probably why kids love it so much. My husband didn't quite get the concept of the Wubble Bubble Ball before I inflated it but my son got it right away. "Daddy it's a big bubble that's a ball". Kids totally get this toy. 

For more on the Wubble Bubble Ball make sure to follow them on Facebook and Twitter