Thursday, August 21, 2014

A Visit from the Tooth Fairy...

The Tooth Fairy visited our house last week.  Tucked inside of his Monster Tooth Pillow was a tiny letter from the Tooth Fairy herself.  Along with the letter, she also left Evan some VERY sparkly money! He was SO excited!

FREE Printable Banner Letters

This is a quick way to print a banner at home.  You can print it on any color card stock to make the perfect color combo to compliment the theme!
Simply right click on the letter that you need, save image, and print!




Weekly Menu #6


Monday
Pesto Chicken and Pasta
Side Salad

Tuesday
Tequila Lime Shrimp with Cumin Rice
Grilled Veggies

Wednesday
French Onion Salisbury Steak
Buttered Corn on the Cob

Thursday
BBQ Chicken Potato Skins
Sweet Potato Fries

Friday
Pocket Burgers with Crispy Onion Straws
Grilled Veggies

And as always, check out these snacks and desserts to bring an extra big smile to your kiddos face!








Be sure to check out our other weekly menus here.


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Loaded Potato Splats!

What to make?  What to make?  The ongoing question for most people.  Today I needed side dish ideas.  I wasn't really up for finding a new recipe to try or making something that maybe just maybe everyone would eat, so I decided to put a very simple spin on an old favorite.  In my house you can't go wrong with anything that is topped with cheese and bacon.  Last year I started making these Flattened Redskin Potatoes and they are GREAT, I can't believe it has taken me until now to make them like this!  SO simple and tasted like I put a lot of thought and effort into it.
Ingredients:
  • 6 Medium Redskin Potatoes (skins scrubbed clean)
  • Olive Oil
  • 1/2 Cup Shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • 3 Tablespoons Crumbled Real Bacon Bits
  • Salt 
  • Pepper
  • 1/2 Cup Sour Cream
  • 3/4 teaspoon Hidden Valley Ranch Mix
Serves 4-6

Boil potatoes for 8-10 minutes or until they are tender enough to easily insert a fork or knife.  Remove potatoes from water and place on baking sheet.  Gently smash potatoes down with the bottom of a glass.  Lightly drizzle potatoes with olive oil.  Salt and pepper each potato.  Top each potato with bacon and cheese.  Bake at 400 until cheese is melted.  

Combine sour cream and ranch mix and stir until mixed well.  Serve on top of potatoes.  

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Disney Bucket List- Fall 2014


This is our second trip to Disney World in 2014 and the shortest trip we have made as a family.  We will be at the parks for just FOUR days.  I used to think that four days was the perfect amount of time... 4 days/4 parks it should be plenty of time boy was I WRONG.  We plan to pack a ton of stuff into our four days before heading off for a 5 night Disney cruise.  Just as the rest of my Disney bucket lists this is not a Disney "must do" list, this is a list of new things that our family plans to enjoy while we are there.  I don't stress over the list and I have yet to complete everything on one of my lists.  As a Disney Vacation Club owner I plan to visit often and eventually I will cross them all off.  I choose my list by selecting a mix of items that are there for a limited time, the resort that we are staying at, and new things for us to try.

1. Festival of the Fantasy Parade- Earlier this year Disney World started a new afternoon parade called Festival of the Fantasy.  The parade celebrates many of the Fantasy Land characters such as Peter Pan, Captain Hook, Flynn Ryder, Rapunzel, Ariel, Cinderella, Bella, Minnie, Mickey, and many others.

2.  Attend Hollywood Studios FROZEN Summer- I was excited to hear that this limited time only event had been extended that included dates of our vacation.  It includes special events such as a Frozen Sing-a-long, ice skating, treats, parade, and an evening fireworks spectacular.

3.  Bay Lake Tower-  This is our "home" DVC resort, but we have never stayed there as a family.  I stayed there with the kiddos a few years ago and I am excited for all of us to stay.  The proximity to Magic Kingdom make it one of my top places to stay.  Something about being able to walk there makes everything so much easier.

4.  Moma Melrose's Ristaurante Italiano -  I like to try at least one new (to us) table service restaurant while visiting the parks.  This restaurant is located in Hollywood Studios so we have decided to to the Fantasmic Lunch package to guarantee a see for the show with out using a fastpass for it.  Italian food is one that that my kids will definitely eat so it is a perfect choice for my family.

5.  Enchanted Stories with Belle-  Since I have two boys you are probably wondering why I have included this on my list.  I am taking a recommendation from a friend.  She said that it is very interactive and her children LOVED it.  I hear it represents the magic of Disney to the fullest and I want to know more!

6.  Seven Dwarfs Mine Train-  This is the newest ride addition to Magic Kingdom's Fantasyland.  It is a rollercoaster designed for everyone over 38 inches tall that is themed around the beloved Snow White.  It is extremely popular right now since it just opened in the spring so make sure you schedule a fastpass.

7.  Silhouettes of Kids- I am always looking for the perfect souvenir to take home from WDW.  My go to items are a Christmas ornament and lots of great pictures.  This time I plan to have the kids sit for a few minutes at Magic Kingdom to get this keepsake completed.  I am not sure of the price but from what I have read it should be less than $30 for both kids.  I will be sure to update with details like price and location when we return.

8.  Go on a Disney Cruise-  This has been on my BIG bucket list for A LONG TIME!  We actually booked this cruise 18 months ago and the fact that it is so close is giving me butterflies in my stomach.  We chose to do 4 days in the parks and then take a relaxing cruise after.  I am prepared to be WOWed!

9.  Family Picture on the Monorail-  We love all forms of Disney transportation because it means that we are in our happy place, however, the Monorail holds the top spot.  It is a ride all in itself.  I have pictures of my kids on the Monorail but none of the whole family.  Believe it or not, this might be the toughest item on my list.

10.  Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party-  This is a special ticket event that is held select dates in September and October.  It is a Halloween party complete with costumes, trick-or-treating, special character appearances, parades, dance parties, and fireworks.  We are currently working on our costumes and I will share them later.

11.  Mickey Kitchen Sink- Last year we tackled the challenge of the Kitchen Sink at Beaches and Cream at the Boardwalk resort.  This version of the kitchen sink is available at the Magic Kingdom and is is slightly smaller so maybe just maybe we will be able to finish it!

12.  Country Bear Jamboree- There are still 15 of the original attractions from opening day at Walt Disney World.  The Country Bear Jamboree is the last one of the 15 that our family has to do to have completed all of them.  Technically I saw the animatronic show as a kid, but I plan to officially check it off the list with my family.  It is an any height attraction that is one of the last attractions that was actually developed by Walt himself.

13.  Dole Whip-  Many people have a long list of their favorite snacks at WDW.  I bet most lists include this delicious treat.  I have tasted fellow Magical Mom Sherrie's Dole Whip, but this time I plan to enjoy my own.  It has even been suggested to me that I add some rum.  Shhh... don't tell.

I know that this list may seem long and ambitious for a short trip, but I plan to try my best.  I will update you when I return from the world!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Home Organization Binder- Tips and FREE Printables


As I have already said, I am on a major home organization project. With school starting, I need to get us all organized and I need to keep it all straight! I previously posted my 2014-2015 School Year Calendar and Planner Pages, so be sure to visit that post for those free printables and my tips on what binder/notebook system to use.






In addition to needing monthly calendars and planner pages, I added a few more things to my binder to help keep me organized. All files are listed below for you to download and use. I created 5 tabs in my binder-

  • Calendar
  • Planner
  • To-Do List
  • Menus/Grocery
  • Budget










After the tabs, I included folders for each member of the family to stuff misc. paperwork. I also included a recipe folder to hold loose recipe cards I pick up along the way.

Here's to starting the school year off on the right foot!
 To Download, click on each link below:


Monthly Menu Planner

Weekly Menu Plan and Grocery List

To-Do List

2014 Budget Worksheets

FREE 2014-2015 School Year Planner Kit

UPDATED!! And just in time for back to school! This planner set is great for any mom, teacher or student. This year I have added more pages to make a complete planner.

I must admit, I am an organization junkie. But I also like my organization to be stylish. So while I love planners, the standard stuff you can buy already put together just doesn't do it for me. Several years ago I found a few products and websites that changed my life!

The first were Circo products by Levenger. They offered a fully customizable notebook/planner system complete with removable pages, inserts, tabs and folders. You had the flexibility to add and remove pages like a 3-ring binder, but with the flexibility and portability of a standard spiral notebook. I later found that Staples offers a more affordable version called Staples Arc in stores that I recommend because you don't have to order online and they are cheaper.

Yet I still ran into one of the same old problems- their planner pages that they offered just didn't suit my needs either! That is when I found this awesome website called DIY Planner. This website has lots of templates to create just about any planner pages you could imagine, and in lots of different sizes to fit just about any standard planner cover. However, I do find the site and templates a little difficult to navigate. So I just figured I'd share the calendar and planner pages I created for myself and make it a little easier for our readers.

Below area few "must haves" for any organized mom or teacher for this school year. Click on the links below to download the pages.The first is a monthly calendar for the 20145-2015 school year.  You can easily put this into an existing planner, use the Arc system I mentioned above, or keep in a 3-ring binder. Next, I have weekly planner pages for the entire school year. The monthly calendar shows a brief overview, but the weekly planner pages are your true tool to keep everyone in your family on time to events and appointments.They have hourly slots for each day of the week to record appointments, games, practices and events. Finish it off with Notes Pages and a stylish Planner Cover and voila! Super organized for the start of the school year:)

Click on each link below to be taken to the pdf file. Just save on your computer and print.

2013-2014 School Year Calendar

2013-2014 School Year Weekly Planner Pages

Notes Pages

Planner Cover Page

Please stay tuned as I post all of my pictures of my actual family planner notebook with these calendar and planner pages!