KING CAKE IS HEEERE!

If you are not from South Louisiana, then you probably won’t understand our love of Mardi Gras. It is a season that we ALL take part in. From schools to business to family and individuals. WE ALL LOVE A GOOD TIME! So, tag along as we share our carnival favorites and how we are celebrating Mardi Gras here in the big apple!

First things first. It all starts with King Cake. Growing up in Louisiana we always knew it was Carnival season when the king cakes started rolling out. They would be stacked high and would be the first thing you saw when you walked into the grocery. But our family has stood by Gambino’s Bakery as our family brand, from our wedding cake to birthdays, we love them! They are kinda are fav 🙂

This year we had the double cream cheese, my GAWD is it good?! HELL YES!


When you get your cake, it will come box and undecorated, which we found not only efficient but an activity for the whole family. My NYC born and raised hubby even jumped in on the fun. The box will include everything you need to fully dress your cake; icing, sprinkles and a plastic baby baked inside! My son had a blast decorating and dancing to the second line! BA BA BA. BA.. DA DA DADA…


Excuse me a moment while I take a bite of my second slice. Yeah, so much for new year’s resolutions- it’s king cake season. AM I RIGHT LADIES?! Now in our family king cake is not just dessert but breakfast too! Hear that sound? Yes, that is me winning the world’s best mom award!!! Ha Ok. Okay… I’m sure I am getting the eye roll right now (mom judging is so not cool). So don’t judge it’s only here once a year so live a little why doncha! 😉


Want to see how we had our own parade here in the city? Check out a previous post. And of course, I am sharing our printable mini king cake recipe below.


You can win a king cake of your own! To enter visit gambinos.com and leave a comment below of your favorite king cake flavor. Let the good times roll! Winner selected 2/24/2017.

I did receive a free king cake from Gambino’s Bakery, however, all opinions are completely my own.

Save in 2017- Groupon Coupons!

This is a sponsored post. All opinions are 100% mine.

I am a busy working mom and love shopping online and of course a good deal, which is why I LOVE Groupon. We have used Groupon over the years for products purchased directly through their app/ site and events like when we saw the Radio City Rockettes. The ease of using their app right from my phone is everything to me.

BUT… this is where it gets even better! I just have to share with you!

Did you know they also have coupons?! Yep! I know right, I totally geeked out too! You can filter through their coupons by brandcategory to top stores- Amazon, Toys R Us, Buybuy Baby and MORE! In 2017 my husband and I are really focusing on saving this year. Which I know it’s the new year’s resolution cliché… but in all honestly, we really are. Which is why having an app on my phone to save here and there is must have. Groupon Coupons are not like other coupon sites or apps, they are not filled with pop-up ads and its FREE! So, I know you have to be saying sign me up! What is really amazing about Groupon Coupons is some offers are even valid in-store! You really have nothing to lose!

Snow day!

So, we had our first big snow fall here in nyc. I will be honest when I say I have been eagerly awaiting this day for weeks, if not months! Our little one experienced snow when he was younger but didn’t really remember it. So, we knew once we had our first snow day we were going to make it count! I think my husband and I had more fun than him. Ha! We slipped on his winter gear, grabbed the snowball maker and headed out. My husband loaded up the bucket with snowballs and the family’s first snowball fight commenced. It was a blast! Well… until the snow melted and froze through his knit gloves… then he was over it. HA!

If you are looking to make perfectly packed and round snowballs- this is your BFF! By Alex Brand toys  

Of course, after warm up with warm cocoa as my little one says.

Ingredients

2 cups milk

¼ cup sugar

¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder

Pinch of salt

½ cup milk chocolate- broken small pieces

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (optional)

Marshmallows for topping (optional)

Directions

Add milk, sugar, cocoa powder and a pinch of salt in a pot over medium heat. Stirring to mix thoroughly. Then, add a little chocolate at a time until melted. Once fully melted a smooth add vanilla if you would like. Serve and top with Marshmallows! Enjoy!

 

A Christmas Tradition

It’s the holidays and there is no better place to be than NYC! With magical window displays to holiday sculptures on display throughout the city, you just can’t escape the beauty of the holiday season. I think once you begin to experience the holiday season through the eyes of a child you begin to feel the magic all over again! This is the first year where our little one actually understands Christmas and Santa, so we did our best to make it as exciting as possible before some little sh**y kids spoil it for him. So… follow below as we share our favorite holiday activities in NYC!

Rocketts** A must do. My husband remembers going as a young boy and wanted to share this memory with our son.  I would recommend for ages 4+. I would recommend getting to the show 1 hour early to have time to make the line and get your goodies and seats in time. My only negative comment on the show was they allow people to enter the show later and it’s very distracting. So if you do attend please don’t be that ass who shoes up late… be on TIME!

After the show we picked up street food and saw the BIG tree. Definitely a Christmas tradition for us!

Christmas In the City

I have rounded up a few of my favorite holiday must see and do in NYC.

  • First on my list is the ABC Carpet Santa- We took Spence here when he was 1 and it was the most beautiful Santa! This year he will only be there on Sunday from 11- 3. Be sure to get there early and remember it’s FREE- but you do need to take your own photos.
  • See the Radio City Rockettes Christmas Spectacular! This will be our first year attending as a family. My husband has gone a few times and it is one of his favorite holiday memories as a child. I cannot wait to see my little one’s face!!!
  • If you are able to attend the New York Botanical Garden train show I would recommend this hands down. Whether you take the little ones with you or make it a date its beyond beautiful!!! See our post when we visited.
  • Walk through the outdoor markets. Union Square Holiday market is one of my favorites. You can find the most unique gifts there. Take a stroll and see local find and delicious treats! My favorite this year was these eco-friendly towels!
  • The MTA holiday train! Take a ride back in time to the holidays!! Its beyond magical. See schedule here.
  • Check out the holiday windows at Macy’s. I will forewarn you… THIS AREA IS HOLIDAY MADNESS!!!
  • Be mesmerized by the Rockefeller center Christmas tree. This is a huge tourist spot and is always super busy, but don’t get overwhelmed it’s the holiday season, take it all in!

Winter Must Have– Polarn O. Pyret

Not only as a blogger but as a mother I like to share our favorite products- ESPECIALLY if it’s something that really, really works! So I have found my favorite winter must have for kids. This is a perfect practical must have or even a gift to slip into their stockings. We attended the Polarn O. Pyret winter event with Stroller in the city. I picked up a pair of gloves (a two pack) and a pair of glove clips. I have seen glove clips before but they never seemed to be as sturdy as these.
I can tell you we have tested these out this last month and we have not lost a pair of gloves yet- from preschool to out and about in the city we still have two! Wooohoooo! Mom Win!

So if there is anything you need to add to your winter list this year it is THESE glove clips.

Happy Halloween

This Halloween we hit the pavement and headed to the city. A few years back, actually Spence’s first Halloween in NYC  we celebrated- we celebrated in Chelsea. One of our good friends Kristen of My Strange Family recommended this part of town. So, we headed back this year and it did not disappoint.
The brownstones are decked out; lights, fog machines and more! The kids have a blast!!!

This year and actually every year except his first he has picked out his costume, he chooses to be a vampire. My little one of course thinks beyond himself- he wanted all of us to be vampires. My husband went all out with him and it made his night that more special!

If you ever decide to trick or treat in the city I would recommend this area for sure!

Fall in the city- apple picking 🍎- Fishkills Farm

I have always dreamed of REAL fall days. Growing up in the south we did not have four seasons. Our seasons consisted of hot, hotter and lots of humidity. Now that we are in the North East we are able to experience all. This year we decided to do take part in the fall festivities; apple picking, warm cider and of course hay rides!
We headed a short car ride upstate to Fishkill’s farm with family in tow. I would recommend getting their early in the morning- to be sure to get the most out of your time.


When you arrive you given the choice of three bag sizes to fill. You do not need to pay for the bags until you leave the farm. Payment per person over the age of 12 is required at the time of entry. You can also purchase a season pass (which we would love to do if we lived closer). The attendant will hand you a map and you are on your way!
The map points out the different apply types along with what is in season.


We headed through the orchards taking in the surroundings and crisp air! Don’t forget you can sample the apples too, within reason. Once you filled your bag, you can either pay at the market or once you leave. We selected the large bag and our bag was not filled completely, so we paid per pound- rather than per bag size. This ended up being less expensive on our end. I would recommend taking advantage of the hay rides which take you from orchard to orchard. Although, we had fun exploring the farm on foot.


Once we finished picking we headed to the market and snagged a few apple donuts and warm cider. Both the plain and sugared were amazing! The market was nice, but it was a little too crowded and hard to navigate through. We grabbed a table in the back listed to the live music, tasted hard cider and let the little ones play and see the live chickens.


They also have fresh veggies and herbs you can pick and pay per pound. It was a beautiful day. I would go back again and again! Be sure to plan ahead with the weather and go early in the season.
Happy Fall Y’all!

EZ PZ – dinner time!

You made a delicious meal, serve everyone and then you hear… uh oh… yep. Those two little words make you want to cry when you look over and see an entire plate of food on the floor.

Well y’all prepare to be Ahhh-mazed. 🙂 This plate may look simple but it WILL change your meal time with kids forever. I have seriously considered keeping one of these in my bag for when we eat out with our kiddo. This sucker (no pun intended) literally suctions to the table, so no more accidental spills or plates knocked over. You are welcome.👊🏻

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This plate is called Ez Pz. The mat is made from 100% food-grade silicone that is BPA, BPS, PVC, latex and phthalate free. Designed for infants / toddlers 4+ months.

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I was not compensated for this review, however I did receive this product for free.

Four tips for flying with a 4 year old

Here are a few tips for flying with a 4 year old.

  • First things first, when booking your tickets find out if you can select your seats from the get. I know when flying with JetBlue you are able to select seats regardless of flying economy or extra leg room. Now with another airline we recently flew with (Delta) we were not able to select the seats when flying economy. I was able to call after booking for the seats to be blocked off. Keep in mind when the Delta blocks off seats for families they block off the VERY LAST row in the plane. These seats DO NOT RECLINE. So be prepared to sit straight up for your entire flight.

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  • Next, thing bring a tablet and a extra long charger if you can. Find out if your plane has wifi capabilities, some do and some you have to buy. When buying a wifi pass, be sure to find out of you are able to stream videos through Netflix etc. We purchased a wifi pass and I found out after while setting up our device that you are unable to stream. WTH. Yep. Now if your plane has TV’s then you are at least in luck! Don’t forget the headphones! IMG_6005
  • BRING snacks! Now of course you know you are not able to bring liquid. But chips, candy or crackers, BRING IT! A bag of Lays chips cost $3.50! And some airlines don’t give unlimited snacks or any.
  • Lastly, we always pack a small blanket and put him in comfy PJ’s. If your little one is not potty trained for sleeping you may want to have he or she wear a pull up.
If I had to recommend a airline to fly with kids I would hands down say JETBLUE all the way!
I have not been compensated in any way by any airline. These opinions are my own from personal experience