The Mommyhood Life – Travel, Crafts, Food, and Florida Family Fun

Holiday Gift Guide

The Non-Toy Gift Guide!

This post is sponsored by the Florida Prepaid College Board, through my role as a Believer Blogger. All thoughts are my own.

The Non-Toy Gift Guide!

When you look at most kids wish lists around the holiday, it is jam-packed with toys.  Between commercials on TV, the catalogs in the mail, and of course the unboxing videos on YouTube, the only thing on their mind is the latest and greatest toys.  However, as a mom of 3, I am so sick of the toy mayhem that happens year after year.  Each child gets an endless array of toys from friends, family, and of obviously Santa, only to find those precious toys at the bottom of a toy box 3 months later or shoved under a bed.  My family is starting to move away from the toy giving and starting to give gifts that help us learn something, make memories, or use our imagination, and I think this is going to be the best gift giving experience we’ve had.

The Gift of Fun:

We live in Florida, so there is an endless supply of fun at every corner.  Between the amusement parks, beaches, and one of a kind attractions, Florida has it all.  So, instead of buying a toy that will be used a few times and then likely forgotten about, why not give gift cards to a fun attraction closet by.  There are so many possibilities for every budget, from zoo memberships to museums, aquariums, and even bike rentals.  There is something fun that any kid will love.

The Gift of Travel

Do you know any kids who dream of exploring the world, or even just a certain state?  My kids love to travel, particularly Anthony.  His favorite place to travel to so far is New York City, and he has dreams of living there one day.  When we lived in Massachusetts and New York was just a 3-hour drive away, he would ask to visit Manhattan instead of having a party, to which I would always immediately say absolutely.  He is also my child who looks up countries online and tries to talk me into going, currently, he is begging to go to England.  The twins at 8, are a little less enthused about traveling to countries with big buildings and statues and are more impressed with rides, characters, and animals.  Their top travel requests are usually Great Wolf Lodge or a trip to Orlando. 
We stopped doing birthday parties a few years ago and decided to take trips as a family instead and it has worked out amazingly, so for the holidays, this will likely be in our future.
If you have a little traveler on your list, why not get them a night at a hotel in a local city? 

The Gift of Creativity

Anthony is my Traveler, and Lilly, she’s the one with a creative spirit.  Her Christmas list this year consisted of gel pens, 2 sketchbooks, and puffy paint.  My heart melted at the simplicity of her desires that we ended up visiting the craft store early and having fun creating together.  However, for Christmas, a class at the local paint bar or a jewelry making class at the bead shop would be a perfect gift.

The Gift of Experience

Time fly’s by and when they’ve outgrown the superheroes and Barbie’s, they probably won’t remember which doll they got when they were 8.  However, an awesome experience will stay with them!  Take an indoor skydiving lesson together or a surfing lesson.  How about renting a cozy coupe car down the beach?  Think outside the box and make those memories that last a lifetime.

The Gift of Education

This has to be the best gift of all!  Imagine giving the gift of eliminating the overwhelming amount of student debt a child will likely come across down the road.  It may not be on their radar yet, but Florida Prepaid is a gift that will last a lifetime, and it is open enrollment right now!

The Florida Prepaid College Plan is the largest, most successful, longest-running prepaid tuition program in the nation!  Florida Prepaid is helping parents and students prepare for college and making planning for the future a lot easier.  300,000 students have already attended college using Florida Prepaid!

THE PLANS

Florida Prepaid offers 5 savings plans, giving you the flexibility to choose one that fits your family’s needs. With plans starting as low as $46.61 saving for college is now possible.  Here is some more about these great plans:

2-Year Florida College Plan: Covers tuition and other specified fees for 60 lower division credit hours at a Florida College.

4-Year Florida College Plan: Covers tuition and other specified fees for 60 lower division credit hours and 60 upper division credit hours at a Florida College

2 + 2 Florida Plan: Covers tuition, tuition differential fee and other specified fees for 60 lower division credit hours at a Florida College and 60 credit hours at a State University.

1-YearFlorida University Plan: Covers tuition, tuition differential fee and other specified fees at a State University for 30 credit hours

4-Year Florida University Plan: Covers tuition, tuition differential fee and other specified fees at a State University for 120 credit hours
Learn more about which plan is right for your family here!

OPEN ENROLLMENT!
The Florida Prepaid College Board’s annual Open Enrollment period is Oct. 15, 2017 – Feb. 28, 2018.  Enroll now and use promo code: 
Life1718 to save $25 on your application fee!

 

Amazing Gift Ideas that Grade Schoolers Will Love!

This post is sponsored by BabbleBoxx.com and the Brands Featured Below.

It is that time of year again!  I love the holidays and gift giving is so much fun, but let’s face it, it can be very stressful too.  I am always on the hunt for the perfect gifts that will make my children and the other little folks on my list excited, I love seeing a huge glowing smile and knowing I picked the perfect present.  However, these days kids have so many things grabbing for their attention it can be hard to get that good old list I remember writing up as a kid.  Luckily Babblebox has come up with some amazing kid-approved items for all the grade school aged kids on your list!

For the Fashionista on Your List:  Vince Camuto Shoes
Check out these Pietra Studded Ballet Flats!  These glitter ballet flats with an adorable bow at the toe are sparkly enough to bring a smile to the face of any little girl who loves fashion, like my Lilly.  Plus, they are comfortable and have a soft elastic strap across the top to keep them from flopping at the heel.  The quality of these shoes is impeccable, and have held up to all the dancing and spinning Lilly has put them through.

For the Traveler on Your List: Viv + Lou Duffle Bag
Do you have a child who loves to travel on your list?  Then the Viv + Lou Duffle Bag is the perfect gift.  They have adorable designs, can be personalized by adding a monogram or name, and are the perfect size for a grade-schooler to pack for a weekend vacation or a trip to their grandparents.
Use Coupon Code: MOMMYHOOD to receive 25% off sitewide!

For the Pet Lover on Your List: Petlanthropy Donation Gift Cards
These Donation Gift Cards give children a unique way to help animals in need!  The Petlanthropy Foundation was founded with only one goal, to help give all homeless cats and dogs a loving forever home.  Gift card recipients are able to find animal shelters and projects that they care about and donate the value of their gift card.
When you purchase, share, and gift Petlanthropy Donation Gift Cards this holiday season, you will receive a special furry and fun surprise!

For the Avid Reader on Your List:  The Wonderling by Mira Bartock and Candlewick Press
From New York best-selling author Mira Bartock, this magical chapter book is sure to keep a middle-grade reader entertained in an adventurous story of fantasy and friendship. 

Synopsis via Candlewick Press:
Welcome to the Home for Wayward and Misbegotten Creatures, an institution run by evil Miss Carbunkle, a cunning villainess who believes her terrified young charges exist only to serve and suffer. Part animal and part human, the groundlings toil in classroom and factory, forbidden to enjoy anything regular children have, most particularly singing and music. For the Wonderling, an innocent-hearted, one-eared, fox-like eleven-year-old with only a number rather than a proper name — a 13 etched on a medallion around his neck — it is the only home he has ever known. But unexpected courage leads him to acquire the loyalty of a young bird groundling named Trinket, who gives the Home’s loneliest inhabitant two incredible gifts: a real name — Arthur, like the good king in the old stories — and a best friend. Using Trinket’s ingenious invention, the pair escape over the wall and embark on an adventure that will take them out into the wider world and ultimately down the path of sweet Arthur’s true destiny. Richly imagined, with shimmering language, steampunk motifs, and gripping, magical plot twists, this high adventure fantasy is the debut novel of award-winning memoirist Mira Bartók and has already been put into development for a major motion picture.

Receive 25% off and Free Shipping with Coupon Code: CANDLEWICK

For the Creative Child on Your List: WowWee Magnaflex
These fun and colorful magnetic strips allow children to create whatever they dream up.  The set comes with project ideas including animals, vehicles, and wearable accessories, or children can use their imagination and create anything with this Magnetic toy set.  Aidan loves construction toys and he spent hours playing with this kid, building, and rebuilding whatever popped into his mind.

For the STEM lover on Your List: Helio Night Light Projection System

My children love science and learning new things in general.  So, I was thrilled when I learned about this award-winning children’s educational nightlight projection system.  Instead of leaving Lilly’s closet light on, we have started playing the Helio Projection System for her and she loves it.  She wakes up and tells me all about the planets and the sleep hours of different animals on the way to school.

Buy one Helio and enter Coupon Code: LEARNINGLIGHT to get the second one discounted to $34.95 (valid through April 2018)

For the Candy Lover on Your List: PEZ Christmas Ornament Collection
These adorable mini PEZ dispensers that come in a real Christmas ornament will definitely bring a smile to a child’s face.  We love PEZ in my family so we opened this ornament up really quickly, but these would make perfect stocking stuffers too!

 

What’s your favorite gift idea this holiday season?