Growing Together: Fun Gardening Projects for the Whole Family

 

My family has a raised garden in our back yard. My children love choosing which vegetables we will plant in it each year. We all work together to water, weed and take care of our garden. It is a great way to get outdoors and enjoy each others company!

 

 

 

 

Growing Together: Fun Gardening Projects for the Whole Family

Don’t let your children become part of the ‘indoor generation’! Simply step into your backyard and you can instantly enjoy the wonders of gardening together. Research shows that children who participate in gardening activities are more likely to form long-lasting positive relationships with gardens and nature. So, tell your munchkin to put down the remote control and put on his wellies! Get inspired together with these fun gardening project ideas.

Care for succulents

Gardening is all about caring, tending and nurturing. For some children, this might be the first time they take on these responsibilities, so a great place to start is with plants that won’t suffer from a little neglect. Succulents are ideal for first-time gardeners. These include cacti, sedum and aloe plants. Adapted to arid conditions, they can cope easily if watering is overlooked and are robust enough to withstand harsh climates. Your budding gardener will have a plant they can be proud of, no matter how much love and attention they devote to it.

Grow your own salad

When you’re planting seeds with your kids, the lack of instantaneous results can be a little frustrating for them. Salad leaves, however, are fast growers and, what’s more, can be eaten. Research has shown that children who grow their own vegetables are more likely to eat nutritious food. All you need to do is buy a packet of seeds, sow them into a pot or bed following the packet’s instructions and within four weeks you’ll be able to harvest the leaves for meals. Create a measuring chart with your kids to track the speedy growth of your plants over the four weeks.

Compete with sunflowers

Another way to explore plant growth with your child is to hold a sunflower growing competition. Invest in a packet of seeds and plant straight into the dirt or in a pot then transplant later. Encourage your child to take ownership of their plants and water them regularly. Within two weeks, green shoots will show and it won’t be long until you have towering specimens in your backyard. When the sunflower heads have lost their petals, cut them off and hang them to dry. The seeds can then be harvested and eaten as a snack or planted next year.

There’s no denying that gardening projects come with a host of benefits for you and especially your child. Their eyes will be opened to scientific wonders, new food experiences, responsibilities of caring and so much more. And you will develop strong family bonds through sharing a common interest that will just keep on growing!

 

This guest post is provided by: Sally

Legoland Discovery Center – Dallas Fort Worth

Have you heard of the Legoland Discovery Centers? Many friends I have spoken to recently didn’t know they even existed.. Say What?! We have friends in the Dallas Forth Worth area that visit Legoland Discovery Center Dallas / Forth Worth often. My kids love to see what new adventures they are up to social media while at Legoland Discovery Center. When we surprised the kids with a trip to Dallas I knew we had to take them to Legoland Discovery Center for the first time!

We love Legos in our house. We love to build with them as a family. Last year they set up a huge Lego exhibit in the local mall so we went down to spend hours looking at the beautiful creations and reading all the facts about how many hours, Legos, etc it took to make each one. If you are like us and like Legos then Legoland Discovery Center is right up your alley!

You start off your time at the discovery center with a little factory tour. Once the doors open after the tour you are fully immersed in all things Lego! Our first stop was taking a ride on Kingdom Quest where you are on a boat shooting your laser gun to earn points! This was fun for the whole family! Once off the ride my kids fully enjoyed earning their ninja belts at the Lego Ningajo City Adventure!
  
Our day at Legoland Discovery Center included everything from 4D movies, driving large Lego police cars, to making small cars to race down the track, and so much more! Every where we turned there was something else to do or another ride to ride. Many of the Lego exhibits are interactive. My whole family got in on the fun of pressing the buttons to have our StarWars characters battle it out.

We ended our day there by cooling off in the Pirate Beach splash area. They had these awesome foam Legos near the ship that you could use to build forts, towers, or just about anything you wanted. We made some awesome memories on our trip to Legoland Discovery Center. We can’t wait to go back again and the best part is I recently read that San Antonio is getting there very own Legoland Discovery Center in the Rivercenter Mall down town, set to open in 2018! How fun is that?! While we wait for it to be built we will continue to visit the Legoland Discovery Center Dallas / Fort Worth. I recommend planning your trip today, if you haven’t been yet!!

*All views shared here are completely and 100% my own. We were given free admission for 3 people to try Legoland Discovery Center Dallas / Fort Worth out and share out experiences here and on my social media. We paid for the additional 3 family members out of pocket. Everything stated here is our own experience and opinions!

Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament in Dallas

While on a spur of the moment vacation in Dallas we decided to go to dinner and a tournament at Medieval Times Dallas. Our friends over at Real and Quirky had enjoyed all the times they had been there and recommended we check it out while we were in Dallas. On our way to the castle we tried to explain what to expect to our kids but they were a little apprehensive. The moment we drove up and they saw the castle they knew they were in for a treat!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As we walked into the castle we were set into a medieval time. The costumes were magnificent. The king was knighting some special patrons in the foyer after we got checked in. There were two bars for adult drinks and some gift shop areas to buy swords, crowns, armor, hats, and so much more. We were in the yellow and red knight section which meant we got to cheer him on as we ate dinner.  Having never experienced anything like this before our entire family was on the edge of their seats the entire night. Watching the beautiful horses enter the coliseum is just breathtaking. Each knight took their turn in each tournament until the final tournament at the end of the night. It was so fun to cheer on our knight as the night went on!

 

 

We came for the tournament but the dinner did not disappoint. We were served course after course of delicious food! We were so full by the time dessert came but we knew we couldn’t pass it up. It was our servers second night working there, he did a fabulous job of making sure we were all taken care of and the food and drinks never stopped coming until the very end.

 

 

 

 

 

I could go on and on about every wonderful detail of our night there. My children will cherish this memory forever. I am so glad we got to experience this with them. We’ve already decided we will most defiantly be going back to Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament every chance we get! If you’ve never gone before you need to take the time to experience it for yourself. If you have gone already, go again! I highly recommend this for every family, every age from toddler up to 100+! Don’t take my word for it, go see for yourself! They have a number of show times available daily, as well as royalty upgrades to choose from and promotions year round. Visit Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament Dallas for more information and book your reservation today!

                               

*All views shared here are completely and 100% my own. We were given free admission for 2 people to visit Medieval Times Dinner and Tournament out and share out experiences here and on my social media. We paid for the additional 4 family members out of pocket. Everything stated here is our own experience and opinions! 

Urban Bricks Pizza comes to Live Oak!

Have you tried Urban Bricks yet? Well no better time than now!

#BrickinGood Pizza Comes to Live Oak

San Antonio’s growing pizza franchise, Urban Bricks Pizza, is hosting a grand opening celebration for their new location at 8000 Pat Booker Road, Suite 100, Live Oak, TX 78233 on Saturday, March 25th from 12pm-8pm that includes free pizza for patrons.

Urban Bricks Pizza Co. is a franchise that sells authentic build your own Neapolitan pizzas for one same price. They are an edgy, outgoing, and fun pizza place targeting millennials, young professionals, and young families. They currently have three locations open in San Antonio with the Live Oak location being the forth venue. The franchise plans to open several more locations by the end of 2017.

To start the day, Urban Bricks Pizza Live Oak franchisee owners Analisa & Victor Sengele will host a ribbon cutting ceremony with the Tri County Chamber of Commerce at 11:30am.

Following the ribbon cutting, the location will open to the public at 12pm and offer free pizza to all guests who arrive from12pm-2pm. There will be a live radio remote onsite during this time with DJ Raven of Mix 96.1, running from 11am-1pm. In addition to free pizza, Urban Bricks Pizza has a whole day of entertainment lined up for the Grand Opening celebration.

Urban Bricks Pizza is committed to giving back to their community, therefore from 12:30pm-3:00pm, the venue will host a fundraiser for the local non profit, San Antonio Pet’s Alive, or SAPA. The organization will have their ‘Tail Wagon’ adoption vehicle on-site next to Urban Bricks Pizza’s dog-friendly patio. Raffle tickets will be available for $5.00 each during this time, with all donations going directly to the non-profit. The raffle will be drawn every 20 mins during this segment for a chance to win swag from Urban Bricks Pizza, SAPA, Mix 96.1 & more!

This Urban Bricks Pizza location is also home to an amazing playground. So, from 3pm-6pm time the venue will have ballon making and face painting available on the playground for all kids.

At 5pm, we will have a guest appearance by the San Antonio’s newest semi-pro soccer team, the San Antonio Athenians Soccer Club (SAASC). Players will be on site to meet and greet with the children & guests, as well as sign autographs until7pm. To wind down the evening, Urban Bricks Pizza will provide free live music from 6pm-8pm.

Cool Off This Summer AT Splashtown San Antonio

Cool Off At Splashtown San Antonio ~ MySixRingCircus.com

We were *invited by Splashtown to spend the day having fun in the sun and cooling off on their water slides and pools! We had a blast! If you are looking for a fun summer activity that will keep you cool I HIGHLY recommend a day or even season pass to Splashtown San Antonio!

A couple years ago I shared why we wanted to get season passes to Splashtown on this post. After spending our Saturday there I must say this list is still completely accurate! We love Splashtown for so many reasons!

First they are family friendly. With over 50 rides and attractions there is something for everyone in the family! Like when my older kids want to ride the large water slides with dad the littles and I can hang out in the brand new Splash Island!New Splash Island at Splashtown SA - MySixRingCircus.com

We were able to rent a locker to keep our valuables safe while we splashed away in the pools all day! Then at lunch time we quickly got our money from our locker and purchased lunch for the entire family. Which I must say they have delicious super nachos!!

Parking is free and they offer a number of discounts to help save money on admission in the park. Like the Big Red Special; when you bring a Big Red Bottle/Can admission is $21.99. Honestly even without a discount their admission prices are very reasonable.

Splashtown Water Slides are the BEST! - MySixRingCircus.com

Overall Splashtown has become my families favorite water park in San Antonio. They really have a lot going for them; like size, location, affordable, and overall family friendly. If you haven’t been to Splashtown this summer you need to get there asap!

*All views shared here are completely and 100% my own. We were given free admission for 2 adults and 2 children. We paid for the additional 2 children out of pocket. I was not asked to post anything but I chose to do so so on my own!
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6 Tips for making the most out of a Disney World Trip!

Disney World TipsThere are so many useful tips and tricks I read before we took our first Disney World vacation. I could go on and on about each one and how helpful they were to us but instead I thought I would just share my top 5 tips to making the most out of a Disney World trip!

6 Tips to Making the Most out of a Disney World Trip:

  1. Rider Swap Tip/Info: If your using rider swap you only need a FastPass+ for the first parent (and older children) to ride the ride the first time. Both parents and all children walk up to the first Cast Member at the ride entrance, tell them you need a parent swap they’ll give the second parent (waiting with younger children) a FP card while the first parent scans their magic band or park pass with their FP. Then when the first parent gets off the ride the second parent (and up to two kids) go in the FP line with just the parent swap FP, not scanning anything. The second FP C.M. will take the card from you inside the ride. So no you don’t need a FP for both parents if your using rider swap because one parent will not scan their magic band/park pass. My recommendation at Epcot is get you a FP for Soarin’ and hubby a FP for Test Track. Then you can both ride both rides with either the regular FP or the rider swap FP. So I suggest splitting up the adult FP for rides the kids aren’t tall enough for so you can ride more of the “tier 1” rides at Epcot and HS. Does that make sense?!
  2. Character Meals are a must if your kids will want autographs and pictures. With so many characters you could plan a week long trip to WDW just to meet characters! My children had little patience to stand in line to meet a character and would much rather spend their time waiting for a ride. Most character dining meals are buffet or family style giving you plenty of time to eat between meeting characters and dancing around with them.

    Lunch at Tusker House in Animal Kingdom with Mickey, Donald, Daisy, and Goofy!

    Lunch at Tusker House in Animal Kingdom with Mickey, Donald, Daisy, and Goofy!

  3. Crowd Calendars: Many Disney themed blogs have a crowd calendar. These calendars predict the times of the year the park will be the busiest and least busy based upon previous years attendance and special events Disney has planned for that time. They also have crowd calendars for specific days at each park. So if you know you are going the first week of June you can look at a crowd calendar to decide which park will be the least busy for each day of the week. Then make your dining reservations and fastpasses based upon which park is the least busy. (Just google “Disney World crowd calendars” to find them.)
  4. Rope Drop & Naps! Okay this is two tips but I feel it falls into the same category. By attending rope drop or park opening each day you will find the park to be pretty empty for the first hour or two (depending on the time of year you go). Along with rope drop/park opening you should either head to A) the most popular big rides first OR B) the back of the park. Most people start at the front of the park so make your way to the back quickly and you’ll find no ride wait times! Then plan for Naps!! If you leave the park around 2pm for naps, returning around 5pm, you’ll find many people to be leaving the park for their dinner reservations or to get out of the heat/off their feet. Your family will be well rested and ready to enjoy the night time celebrations! 

    Rope drop at the Magic Kingdom with a welcome show!

    Rope drop at the Magic Kingdom with a welcome show!Naps in our Cars suite at Art of Animation!Naps in our Cars suite at Art of Animation!

  5. Have a plan but be ready to go with the flow! We had dining reservations, fastpasses, and a plan A & B for each day of our trip. For the most part things went as planned. However there were things completely out of our control that happened…for instance; we had two rides we had fastpasses to break down on the same day during our ride times, a car accident at our resort meant longer bus ride times putting us in a rush to get to dining reservations, and my kids spent almost every minute of every day wanting to go back to the resort to swim all day. We quickly learned to move our plans aside and go with the flow when things like this happened. Leaving one park after only half the day to let the kids spend the whole evening and night swimming. 

    Night swim at the Nemo Pool!

    Night swim at the Nemo Pool!

  6. Lastly bring Blister Block, Mole Skin and Pair of Scissors! Blister block and moleskin are your best friend at Disney World!! Buy them and use them daily! Coat everyone’s feet in blister block before socks every morning and again after naps/before going back to the park. Mole skin can be cut (that’s why you need scissors) to cover areas of your feet that are sensitive or prone to getting blisters. I put a strip on the pad of my feet near my toes.

Like I said there are many more helpful tips I got and read but these were the most useful to getting the most out of our stay at Disney World. We had an amazing week at Disney and can’t wait to go back. For more info on my trip read The 10 Things I learned on my Disney World Trip! Also we drove 16+ hours to and from Disney World so read some of the ways I make traveling easier for my family with my top traveling tips here, packing efficiently here, saving money on food here, and money saving ideas here!

10 Things I learned on my first trip to Disney World!

10 Things I learned at Disney

As we headed home I was reflecting on our week in Disney World. I thought I’d share some of what I learned on our very first trip to Disney World!

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1) For every rude guest there are two or three nice ones. Standing in endless lines always goes quicker when you have friendly people to talk to. We met people from New Jersey to Arkansas to California and everywhere in between. All nice, helpful, good people. Thank you awesome people! Also plan to spread the ‘magic’…we helped people this week numerous times in many ways (i.e. folding pesky strollers is no match for this mom of four…you’ve got a stroller I can figure out how to fold it in under one minute! Need 50 napkins to clean up a spill…I’ve got those in my purse.)
2) The dining plan was well worth it for our family of 6! (We had the 1 snack, 1 quick service and 1 sit down meal per person per night at our resort.) I kept track all week of what we would have paid at meals and compared it to the amount we paid for the dining plan, we saved almost $500!! Yes we would have eaten that much food without the dining plan. No food was wasted with my growing bunch. Yes we used every last dining credit up until we left this evening.

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Dining in ‘China’ at Epcot! We had reservations for a sit down meal every day!

3) All those tips/tricks you read on blogs (or from friends on FB) are worth your time to read before you go because they’ll save you precious time at the parks. We never stood in an attraction line more than 20 minutes, we knew several short cuts around the parks, and we didn’t zig zag through the park wasting our energy because I had a plan thanks to all those tips.
4) Being at rope drop/park opening every day then leaving for naps and pool time around 2pm then back to the park around 5-6pm was the best advice I received! Kids lasted until 10pm each night with very minimal meltdowns. And only two of our children fell asleep on a bus ride to our resort.

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Here they are on the last day waiting for rope drop. The park was very calm and quiet on this morning!

5) Rider swap fastpass for parents is great! However it doesn’t dry the tears of your 2 year old who is sure he is 6ft tall and can ride anything he wants.

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Yep you guessed it…the 2 year old is mad because the older kids just got to ride space mountain while he had to wait for them outside!

6) Despite some negative feedback the new Fastpass system is awesome and I highly suggest using it. We rode most of our rides all week long with fastpasses…little waiting for antsy kids is perfect!!

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We fastpassed this Buzz Lightyear ride 2 times over the three days we visited the Magic Kingdom!

7) You can never have too many bottles of water. Yes you can get a cup of water for free at quick service restaurants but dragging a family of six to get cups of water just doesn’t happen. Bring lots of water!
8) If you live more than a days drive away and can afford to fly, do it! You’ll feel like you ran two full marathons after a week at WDW and won’t want to drive 17 hours home! (I recently read that the average person walks 10 miles a day in Disney World parks….we were there for 6 days, that’s 60 miles in a week!)

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This is day 5 of visiting the parks (day 7 of our trip). Someone of us are getting grumpy and tired.

9) Most people have no idea that many bike trailers double as a stroller. You will be the only one with one at WDW. People will think you invented a new stroller. More people should consider using theirs at WDW so their kids and ride comfortably with lots of cargo room!

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Funny thing is Hubby forgot to check the stroller before we left so we left the front wheel at home and the tires were flat. The resort aired up the tires and the stroller worked just find without a front tire!

10) My older two boys (ages 8 & 7) are capable of walking many many many miles a day with no complaints. I will be using this fact in my favor this summer!! They got many pats on their back for not complaining about the long walks, running to catch our bus so we didn’t miss it, and keeping up with my very fast walking pace.

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The last day…the older two boys have walked around 50 miles so far!

 I share my top 6 tips for making the most out of your Disney World Trip here! Also other related posts I’ve done are Traveling Tips, Saving Money on Food while traveling, and Packing efficiently here!

 

San Antonio’s NEW Children’s Museum Name Unveiling

Last week I shared this post about the June 2015 opening of the new San Antonio Children’s Museum. My family and I went to Lions Field this past Saturday to check out some of what the new museum has in store for us all PLUS we were there for the name unveiling!

Fun in the sun at Lions Field

Here they are enjoying the sun at Lions Field!

Sling shot stuffed animals.

Sling shooting the stuffed animals across the field was a highlight for my kids!

Hanging sheets to make forts.

Volunteers helped the kids hang clothes to make forts/houses. 

The DO SEUM

Children from the audience were chosen to help count down to the name reveal and throw confetti!

THE DO SEUMBIG ANNOUNCEMENT: The name of the new museum is THE DO SEUM!

Now we get to wait in anticipation for the opening in June 2015…watching as the huge buildings become a great new museum here in San Antonio!

 
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San Antonio Children’s Museum Free Family Event

SACM_Announcement_Invite (FINAL)Did you know that the San Antonio Children’s Museum is building a new home at 2800 Broadway just south of E. Mulberry Ave. here in San Antonio? This new museum will open June 2015! It will have over 65,000 square feet of exhibit space (that is 50% larger than their current location downtown) that will have an emphasis on interactive science, technology, art and literacy activities for all ages to enjoy. This new site will also include 30,000 square feet of outdoor space and 240 free parking spaces for it’s visitors to use.

The name of this new museum will be announced on Saturday, January 25, 2014 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Lions Field, 2809 Broadway St, San Antonio! To celebrate the new name and future direction of this museum they will offer this FREE FAMILY EVENT with live music, food from local restaurants and food trucks! PLUS activities for children; including record-breaking connect-the-dots, designing and decorating giant sheet forts, science and art in play activities and many more!!

As the event’s grand finale, the new name and logo for the San Antonio Children’s will be revealed to the public. This event will be free to attend and open to the public.

My family and I will be at this event as we are anxiously waiting for the new museum to open! If your looking for a fun family activity I highly suggest coming out on Saturday to check out what all they have going on! YOU CAN RSVP FOR THIS EVENT AT sakids.org/rsvp

 

 
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Throwing a Snowman Soup Party!

Snowman Soup Party

Back in 2006 I found a group for stay at home moms in my area. (I joined the group which became a huge part of my life and how I met most of my friends.) One of the first events I attended was called “Snowman Soup Party” hosted at the then presidents home. I was VERY curious as were all the other moms to what “snowman soup” was. We lived in NW New Mexico so we did get snow but we hadn’t had any recently so I wasn’t sure how this soup was going to taste.

I showed up and low and behold my friend had a huge pot of Hot Cocoa on her stove! Then next to the stove was an assortment of fixings to put your “Snowman Soup” together. This event became a tradition within our group and our home! Now each year during the month of December I hold a Snowman Soup Party!

Here are a few ideas for you to try for your own Snowman Soup Party!

Items needed:

  • Hot Cocoa
  • Hot Water 
  • Candy Canes (his scarf)
  • Mini Marshmallows (snow men)
  • Hersey Kisses or Bells (top hat)
  • M&M’s (buttons)
  • Mugs
  • Friends & Family!

Optional items:

  • Snowman coloring pages (I used THESE found at Crazy Adventures in Parenting)
  • Cotton Balls
  • Glue
  • White Construction Paper
  • Crayons

This year each child was able to color some snow man pages. Make a craft snowman (like this one from There’s Just One Mommy) with cotton balls and construction paper. While listening to ‘Frosty the Snowman’ in the back ground. Sometimes we sing “Once there was a Snowman” and other silly snowman songs we find online.

snowman soup

Every year I do this and every year I am so happy with the outcome. This fun little tradition has helped bring in lots of new friends to my house to try a new activity and my children enjoy it immensely so I don’t foresee us stopping this tradition any time soon! 

So the question is… How do you like your snowman soup??

Check out other fun things to do this winter with my Advent Calendar!