Dallas Mom Blog and Fort Worth Mom Blogger: Trendy Mom Reviews
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Thursday, June 14, 2018

Get Ready for Shark Week with the Best Shark Toys for Kids!

Shark Week begins on July 22nd!  This is a great time to create fun shark themed memories with your children. In today's post, I'll share a couple of trendy toys that my children absolutely love!

The first toy is one of Wild Republic's cuddly "bottom feeders". I'm a Boy Mom and my boys love this little shark because he is actually very soft and cuddly. It also allows them to have fun with their imaginations. They named him Fluffy. My youngest has been carrying Fluffy around ever since he arrived. He is now part of our family.

Here are the details about this trendy shark in case you want to order one for your child:
Living Ocean Sharks from Wild Republic: Living Ocean is a new line of ultra-realistic plush from Wild Republic. This highly-detailed aquatic plush line utilizes fabric printing method to achieve vibrant life-like colors and designs on super soft fabric. Choose from Blacktip, Hammerhead, Great White, Tiger, Zebra, Leopard, and Bamboo Sharks. Living ocean sea creatures are approximately 20-25" in length; size varies by species. MSRP $19.99.

The next toy is the ALEX D.I.Y. Knot-a-Shark. We've been working on this trendy project all week. It's a fun project because it combines both sewing and knotting for the kids to create a fun little blanket.  It's adorable and cozy!  This project has helped us to bond as we sat together to sew and tie together.  One of the standout features of this project for me was that my boys were calm while they worked on it. They are usually super energetic and unable to sit still for very long. However, this project was soothing to them as they had fun paying attention to the details.  I plan to look for more projects like this in the future!  Whether you have girls or boys, you'll definitely want to check out this kit!  

Here are more details about this kit:
ALEX DIY Knot-A-SharkALEX DIY Knot-A-Shark comes with everything you need to make every week Shark Week. Create your own snuggly, terror-of-the-deep blanket, that you crawl inside of, ideal for naps, sleepovers or binge-watching your favorite show. Stitch together the shark’s face with pre-punched fleece and felt pieces, then knot the sides closed and add a tail. When complete, the project measures 42in. x 60in. (106.7cm. x 152.4cm.). Includes 5 precut fleece shapes, 15 precut polyester felt shapes, 3 colors of cotton embroidery floss, needle and easy instructions. Recommended for children 8 years of age and older. $30.99

We hope that you enjoy Shark Week with your little ones. This is a great opportunity to learn, bond, and create happy memories together!
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The SFC Stampede of Dinosaurs with Rock Your Child's World

Did you know that the latest Jurassic World movie is coming out soon?  It's called Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom.  It's sure to be a hit! If your children are like mine, this movie will renew their interest and obsession with dinosaurs. In today's post, I'll share information trendy dinosaur toys that my children love! These toys have provided them with hours and hours of entertainment.

Dino Glove-A-Bubbles (Zing) –Kids can slip this dino-shaped ‘animal themed’ gloves on their hands, dip it into the portable pouch of bubble solution, wave their hands and make hundreds of bubbles with just a wave of their hands! Here are the details:
Churn out oodles and oodles of BUBBLES with just the wave of your hand with Glove-A-Bubbles, new from Zing! Get ready to wave and play! Kids simply remove the bubble pouch from the glove and pour one of the two bubble solutions into the pouch. Dip the glove into the bubble pouch. Wave your glove back and forth and watch tons of delightful bubbles form instantly, right before your eyes. Never ending bubbles for never ending fun! Glove-A-Bubbles come with one glove and two packs of bubble solution. The pouch is also re-sealable and refillable. Glove-A-Bubbles come in eight different animal-themed gloves, including lion, alligator, hippopotamus, elephant, dinosaur, panda, bunny and
monkey. There’s a Glove-A-Bubble for everyone! 
For ages 3+. Available: Now. 
US: $2.99 US Retailers: Walmart, Target, Sam’s Club
CA: $3.99 CA Retailers: Walmart Canada, Amazon, Mastermind Toys, Indigo.

Check out the video below:

Splattosaurus (EPOCH) -Kids mold their very own clay dinosaur players to move around the board. When another dinosaur enters the same spot, players can SPLAT their opponents into extinction.  Here are the details:
Kids mold their very own clay dinosaur players to move around the board. As each player takes their turn and advances to the next space, they cross their fingers hoping no one lands on the same spot as them. There’s not enough room for two dinosaurs on one space. When another dinosaur enters the same spot players can SPLAT their opponents into extinction. Get the dinosaur home safely to win! 
For ages 4+. Available now. 
US: $14.95

Stikbot Dinos (Zing) - The wildly popular stop-motion animation toy and app now features dinosaurs! This lets kids make Stikbot-themed animation shorts – maybe even their own Jurassic Park movie!!!     Here are the details:

Be prepared for double the dino action with Stikbot Mega Dinos! These massive beasts, double the size of the regular dinos, are sure to steal the show! Stikbot Mega Dinos are available in multiple colors. 
For ages 4+. Available April 2018. 
US: $9.99 US Retailers: Walmart Exclusive.
CA: $11.99 CA Retailers: Walmart, Indigo
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Tuesday, June 12, 2018

(Win it!) 5 Tips for Making it Easy to Spend Time Outside with Your Family + Information About The Grove Frisco!

If you follow regularly, you know that I'm a Boy Mom with energetic children. My boys thrive when I help them to channel their energy in healthy ways. We try to spend a lot of time outside in order to create a healthy balance in our lives.   In today's post, I'll share tips to help your children to spend more time outside. I will also tell you about a trendy new development in Frisco -  The Grove Frisco - that is perfect for families who want amenities that draw families outside. (Newland Communities and The Grove Frisco, offer a new residential community crafted for the modern life, located at the Four Corners of Frisco, McKinney, Plano and Allen.)  We'll also share a giveaway where one lucky winner will receive a gift card to our favorite BBQ restaurant so that they are able to plan a fun day to visit and then enjoy dinner.

5 Tips for Making it Easy to Spend Time Outside with Your Family
The tips below focus on making it easy to spend time outside with your family. Raising children is a lot of work which is why I am an advocate of living somewhere peaceful with generous amenities that make it easy to simply walk outside to enjoy time as a family. The following life hacks are ones that we personally follow. 

Live in a neighborhood that promotes a healthy outdoor lifestyle.
As parents, we have many errands to run such as driving our children to school, practices, games, and more. If you live in Frisco, McKinney, Plano, or Allen, you know that driving from errand to errand in the Texas heat is exhausting.  That's why I think that it's important to live in a neighborhood with generous amenities that you are able to enjoy without driving. The Grove Frisco simplifies life for residents as they will make it easy to enjoy a healthy lifestyle with open green spaces, playgrounds, nature and neighborhood trails, a splash pad, and nice swimming pool. 

Take your dog on a walk.
Having a family dog makes it easier to stick to a consistent walking schedule.  This is a great opportunity to spend time together outside together.

Organize a splash play date.
Splash pads have been game changers for our play dates. I'm outnumbered by my children during the day when my husband is at work, so it's stressful to go swimming without his help. On the other hand, a splash pad is the perfect play date for hot Texas summers when my husband isn't home to help watch them at the pool. 

Go swimming.
Once my husband is home from work, I am no longer outnumbered by my children. We love to put them in their Puddle Jumpers and visit the pool.  It's amazing how much energy they use!  Nothing is better than baby giggles and splashes in a swimming pool.

Go fishing.
Fishing is a great way to spend time outside together.  Find a stocked catch-and-release pond to take your family. 

Now that I've shared tips, let me tell you more about The Grove FriscoAs I mentioned earlier in this post, it's exhausting to drive around from errand to errand.  Choosing a home and lifestyle that allows you to "escape to home" to walk to amenities is a great way to simplify life and make it easier to maintain a healthy lifestyle.  Personally, my family lives in a neighborhood that makes it easy for us to go on walks, runs, and bike rides. It's also easy for us to walk to a nice swimming pool or fish at a stocked catch-and-release pond.  This is an amazing lifestyle for our family and I feel like I am teaching my children to have healthy habits that feel natural. However, The Grove Frisco pushes the boundaries with even more amenities and natural beauty than our current neighborhood.  Let me share some of the features that I found:
The Grove Frisco: Families, couples and individuals at all stages of life are looking for thoughtfully planned communities where they can establish roots among like-minded people seeking to “escape to home” in safe, welcoming and friendly neighborhoods. The Grove Frisco features:
  • Village-like culture that is intentional versus master-planned
  •  Design that encourages outdoor play and social interaction for all ages
  • Large mature trees, open green spaces, playgrounds and winding avenues create opportunities for neighbors to connect.
  • At the community’s hub is Orchard House, a modern-8,365 sq. ft. farmhouse with a café and bakery, fitness center, pools, splash pad and grilling area.
  • Other outdoor amenities include 4.5 miles of nature and neighborhood trails; seven-acre City Park; dog park; pavilion with A/V for concerts, meetings, and movie nights; and a planned future catch-and-release pond.

Here is a video that shares an overview:

If you want to check out The Grove Frisco, they are having a Grand Opening on June 23rd. This is an event that you won't want to miss! I'm sure that this will be a sought after neighborhood since it's in a top school district and offers an amazing lifestyle that is filled with amenities.

Win it!
One lucky winner will receive a $100 gift card to a BBQ restaurant that is located near The Grove Frisco. If you don't have plans on June 23rd, this is a great opportunity to visit The Grove Frisco and go out to dinner.  Enter using the Rafflecopter below.  The winner must reply to our email within 72 hours. Otherwise, we will select a different winner. The winner must have a U.S. shipping address. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
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The Father's Day Gift Guide

Father's Day is on Sunday, June 17th.  In today's post, I'll share trendy Father's Day gift ideas that are sure to be popular this year.

If you are looking for a unique gift that results in a rewarding hobby, consider buying coffee roasting supplies from Sweet Maria's to allow dad to roast his own coffee beans! Coffee roasting is a rewarding hobby that fits many personalities.  Dads who are perfectionists will enjoy fine tuning their coffee roasting skills to create the perfect roasts.  Practical dads will appreciate that green coffee beans cost a fraction of the price of roasted coffee beans. Dads who are social will enjoy sharing their special creations with friends, colleagues, and family members.   Sweet Maria's is our favorite store for coffee enthusiasts, including everyone from novice coffee roasters to those with years of experience.  They have a great guide to help you to get started here. Their guide includes tips for different preferences and price points.  Sweet Maria's offers the gold standard for coffee roasting enthusiasts! For instance, my husband orders all of his green coffee beans from Sweet Maria's for two reasons. The first is that they have the best variety and quality that he has found over the past several years. The second is that he feels that the pricing is very competitive.  Visit Sweet Maria's here.

Happy memories are the best gift.  It doesn't necessarily matter what you do as long as you do it together.  However, having a plan is certainly helpful.  This year, we are visiting LEGOLAND Discovery Center in Grapevine, TX. It will be open from 11am to 6:30pm on Father's Day and includes both indoor and outdoor activities.  If you haven't visited in a while, you'll be impressed with the giant Ninjago play area.  Personally, my children love the splash pad more than anything else, so you'll also want to plan to bring swimsuits and a change of clothing!  Learn more about LEGOLAND Discovery Center here.

My husband and I are now in our 40's, so good skincare is critical.  The CeraVe products below are part of my husband's skincare routine. He's used half of the products for several years while the products from the Renewing Line are a newer part of his routine. Let me share more details.

My husband and I are both in agreement that CeraVe has the best skincare products that we love. Several years ago, I tried the CeraVe Foaming Facial Cleanser after my dermatologist recommended it for my dry skin and sensitive skin that was also breaking out.  It was so amazing that I've used it ever since. My husband also tried it and became hooked.  While it's probably fantastic for all ages, we've found it to be a lifesaver as we adjusted to our aging skin.

Some of the newer CeraVe products that we have been using are from their Renewing Line. The CeraVe Renewing Line was developed with dermatologists.  The products contain a special combination of ceramides 1, 6, 6-11 to help restore the skins natural protective barrier and help to visibly smooth fine lines and restore radiance.  There are four products in this line, including:

  • CeraVe Skin Renewing Day Cream (SRP of $24.99): We use this product daily because it features SPF30 broad spectrum sun protection which is essential in Texas. In addition the encapsulated retinol releases gradually to help visibly smooth fine lines.
  • CeraVe Skin Renewing Cream Serum (SRP of $18.49): This product features a complex of retinol and ceramides that were designed to help restore the skin's protective barrier and to help reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Personally, we use this under moisturizer. It applies smoothly and seems to work well for us.
  • CeraVe Skin Renewing Gel Oil (SRP of $24.99): This product contains CeraPlex which is a unique blend of five ceramides and sunflower to hydrate the skin and to instantly improve the skin's radiance.
  • CeraVe Skin Renewing Night Cream (SRP of $18.49): This night cream features a peptide and ceramide complex that seriously hydrates, softens, and renews tired skin.  We use this at night and the results have been amazing. At 40 years old, I feel like this is a must-try product!

Finally, my husband runs several miles every morning, so he needs good sun protection. He uses the CeraVe Sunscreen Face Lotion (SPF 50) and CeraVe Body Lotion with SPF 50 protection. These sunscreens were developed with dermatologists and contain ceramides 1, 3, 6-11 to help restore the skin's natural protective barrier.  We really like that these products absorb easily and are relatively lightweight.  They are perfect for us, especially since we live in Texas where the sun in strong and we have aging skin that we want to protect.

ZOE is the world's first 3-in-1 anti-aging Sonic Beauty Devices. My husband uses his ZOE in combination with the CeraVe Foaming Facial Cleanser above for fantastic results.  This trendy 3-in-1 anti-aging sonic beauty brush helps to cleanse, massage and apply skincare products with ease. Made of a soft, medical grade, antimicrobial silicon, Zoe is the perfect tool for all skin types, with 15 different massage settings and a unique design built to reach all areas of the face and body. The best part about Zoe is that she makes applying your favorite skin care products a hands-free task. Zoe smoothly applies your favorite products and her press-and-roll massaging action allows them to be absorbed gentler, deeper and cleaner into your skin and not onto your fingers!

A Good Night of Sleep is an amazing gift for parents. 
Weighting Comforts  offers good quality weighted blankets that my husband and son like because they help them to feel calmer, sleep better, and feel less anxiety.  Weighted blankets are a big trend right now.  We really like the Weighting Comforts COOLMAX ALL SEASON technology because, well, it's summer in Texas!  This technology transports moisture away from the body to help stay cool. We like the quick-dry feature and the breathable functionality. An amazing night of sleep and reduced anxiety is priceless!

If you want an over-the-top and memorable dessert for Father's Day, visit FattyCakesNY. The Dad in your life will certainly know that he is special when he sees and tastes an amazing FattyCakesNY creation. For instance, the BIG POPPA is a great choice for Father's Day. This trendy cake includes an M&M & pretzel cookie cake sandwiching a triple chocolate brownie with layers of salted vanilla buttercream, chocolate ganache, and finished with rainbow sprinkles! We even added an optional Chocolate Ganache Core to our BIG POPPA. Visit FattyCakesNY here because they will win your heart with their many cakes and options for customization!

The Hennessy V.S.O.P Privilège 200th anniversary limited-edition carafe is currently available at fine retailers nationwide, and will retail for $80 for a 750ml bottle. Here is a trendy recipe that is perfect for Father's Day!

The Timeless Mastery
  • 2 oz. Hennessy V.S.O.P Privilège Cognac
  • .5 oz. Madeira 
  • 3 dashes Peychaud bitters
  • 1 dash Angostura bitters
  • Orange twist and gold leaf (garnish)

Add all ingredients to mixing glass with ice, stir to chill and strain into a rocks glass, garnish with the expressed oils of an orange twist, discard the twist and add gold leaf.

Below are a few locations that carry the limited edition bottle in Dallas. 

Hill's Liquor
10087 Hwy 59 South
Liquor Depot Express
Liquor Warehouse
Angels Beverage

We hope that you all enjoy Father's Day and create happy memories together!
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Visit the Trendy LEGOLAND® Discovery Center Dallas/Fort Worth for the Minifigure Birthday Bash!

If you have a little LEGO lover in your family, they will be over-the-moon when they learn about the celebrations that LEGOLAND® Discovery Center Dallas/Fort Worth has planned for the 40th anniversary of the LEGO Minifigure!  

Let me share a little history. In 1978, LEGO® introduced its first Minifigure - the Police Officer - to its brick construction sets. Since then, LEGO has produced more than 1,000,000,000 Minifigures over the years.  The LEGO Minifigures have been an iconic part of  childhoods for many years!

LEGOLAND® Discovery Center Dallas/Fort Worth is celebrating the 40th anniversary of the LEGO Minifigure by throwing a totally awesome party. Here are the most important details to paste into your calendar:
  • What: The LEGO Bricktacular Two-Weekend Celebration 
  • When: June 23–24 and June 30–July 1. 
  • Where: LEGOLAND® Discovery Center Dallas/Fort Worth (Click here for a map. Phone: 469-444-3050) 
The bricktastic birthday bash will be filled to the brim with all things Minifigures – even all 17 of the brand-new exclusive LEGO® Party Series Minifigures will be making an appearance.

Kicking off the weekend on Thursday, June 21 is a super-sized Mini BrickFactor build-off competition.  (This is free and open to the public.) The build-off takes place in front of the attraction just inside Grapevine Mills.  Kids ages 5 to 15 can enter to show off their creative building skills for a chance to win a one-day apprenticeship with the LEGOLAND® Discovery Center Master Model Builder.  The competition takes place in two rounds ­– 
  • Mini division (ages 5 to 9) from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and 
  • Junior division (ages 10 to 15) from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. 

Pre-registration is required by June 15, to sign-up visit here.

The bricktacular two-weekend celebration will be bursting with activities that include*: 
  • LEGO® costume character disco dance party (every two hours)
  • Bring a Minifigure from home to participate in super-mega Minifigure trading
  • Take on the supersized birthday scavenger hunt to find all 17 of the brand-new exclusive    LEGO® Party Series Minifigures hiding in MINILAND
  • Help the Master Model Builder to a birthday-themed big build
  • Plus, many more super-secret birthday surprise
*Activities are included in the price of admission.

For more information visit here.

We hope that you have a chance to bond with your children at this trendy event!

About LEGOLAND® Discovery Center Dallas/Fort Worth:
LEGOLAND® Discovery Center Dallas/Fort Worth opened at Grapevine Mills Mall in March 2011.  The 35,000-square-foot indoor attraction geared towards children ages 3 to 10 and their families, features millions of LEGO® bricks and offers a fun, highly interactive and educational two to three hour experience.  Interactive features include hands-on play areas, a 4D cinema, LEGO® rides, outdoor water playground, special party rooms for birthdays and other celebrations, and signature MINILAND exhibit, featuring replicas of North Texas landmarks made out of LEGO® bricks.  Admission is $21.95 for guests 3 years of age and older, free for kids 2 and under.  Adults must be accompanied by children to enter.  For more information visit dallasfw.legolanddiscoverycenter.com. Facebook/Twitter: @ldcdfw and Instagram: @ldcnorthamerica.

LEGOLAND® Discovery Center Dallas/Fort Worth 
Hours:  Monday - Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. - last admission two hours prior to closing. 
Tickets:  Admission is $21 for guests 3 years of age and older, and free for kids 2 and under.  
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The Trendy $10 Wholotta Box is Back at Taco Bueno! #LetsTalkTexMex

As a Boy Mom in Texas, tacos are a staple at our house. Today was one of those days where I was stretched thin and the idea of making dinner was not at the top of my list. Thank goodness that Taco Bueno had me covered!  If  you need a night off from cooking, it's perfect timing because Taco Bueno brought back the original $10 Wholotta Box.  This box is generously packed with food for my entire family. 

For a limited time the $10 Wholotta Box is available and contains: 

  • 12 Party Tacos or 12 Party Burritos, or six and six of each; 
  • 2 large sides of refried beans; 
  • 2 sides of Mexican rice; 
  • 4 bags of chips; and 
  • Signature Original Red Salsa

This deal makes the food 50% cheaper than what you would normally pay.   

While a good deal is nice, quality is important too. Taco Bueno uses 100 percent never frozen ground beef and 100 percent real cheddar and pepper jack cheese. The slow-simmered refried beans, salsa, crispy tortilla chips and taco shells are made from scratch in-house. All day, every day.

The Wholotta Box is available at participating restaurants nationwide for a limited time, so you'll want to pick this deal up soon!

PS - Can’t make it to the restaurant? For just a few bucks more, Buenoheads can order the Wholotta Box from one of Taco Bueno’s awesome third-party delivery services including UberEats, Doordash and Postmates.

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