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

Holiday Tips

Dinosaur Valentine’s Day Card + Free Printable

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Dinosaur-Valentines-with-Free-Printable-Cards

Dinosaur Valentine’s Day Card + Free Printable


Are you still looking for the perfect Valentine’s Day cards for your kids?  These dinosaur Valentine’s are adorable and super easy to make!  Plus they offer an affordable option without the candy.  My dinosaur obsessed third grader is so excited to give them out next week and play with all their dinosaur figures together.

Dinosaur-Printable-Valentines-Day-Cards

Supplies: 
Glitter Cardstock 
White Paper 
Scissors 
Paper Cutter 
Glitter Tape or Washi Tape 
Glue Stick 
Mini Dinosaur Figures (Available at most Dollar Tree and Dollar General stores year around)

Dinosaur-Printable-Valentines-Day-Cards-How-To

Instructions: 
Print Valentine’s Day cards.
friendosaur-Valentine-Printable-Dinosaur

Use a paper cutter or scissors to carefully cut out each card. 

friendosaur-Valentine-Printable-Card-Dinosaur
Use a paper cutter or scissors to cut glitter cardstock slightly larger than the Valentine’s Day card. 

Use a glue stick to attach the card to the cardstock. Allow to dry completely. 

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Use glitter tape or washi tape to attach a mini dinosaur figure to each card. 

Free-friendosaur-Valentine-Printable-Card-Dinosaur-Easy-DIY
Your cards are ready to be enjoyed. These are perfect for classroom exchanges! 

friendosaur-Valentine-Printable-Card-Dinosaur-Easy-DIY-cheap

Create Your Own Paper Rosette Heart Valentine’s Day Card

Create Your Own Paper Rosette Heart Valentine's Day Card

Create Your Own Paper Rosette Heart Valentine’s Day Card

White Heart Filled Heart Card ~ Valentine’s Day Kids Craft

I can’t believe we are already in February and talking about Valentine’s Day!  January flew by in the blink of an eye, but I have this beautiful and easy rose filled heart card made out of rolled paper to share with you.  It is so pretty no one will know how easy it was to make and it is a perfect Valentine!

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List of Supplies:

Colored Craft Paper and white craft paper
Scissors
Craft Glue
Pencil – to trace the template
Template

Instructions:

Step (1)
Take a small piece of colored craft paper and cut it into a spiral as like the spiral template.

Step (2)
Take the spiral paper and start to roll it from its outer edge.

Step (3)
Keep rolling the spiral pattern until reaching the center.

Step (4)
Apply glue on the center area of the spiral pattern, which now should be positioned below the rolled pattern. Press the roll with the center to make sure that it is secured and glued with the center part.

Step (5)
Similarly, make around 20 rolled roses. You can create more if required to fill the heart pattern.

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Step (6)
Prepare the card using any colored card paper other than white. Trace and cut out the heart pattern of the template from a white paper. Glue the cut out heart pattern on the front side of the card.

Step (7)
Now start to glue the rolled roses inside the heart pattern on the card. Start gluing the roses from the bottom edge of the heart pattern.
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Step (8)
Glue the roses along the border, moving upwards.
Valentines-day-card-diy-ideas-tutorial

Step (9)
Fill the heart pattern with the paper roses neatly. Once done filling the heart with roses, allow the glue to dry for a while.
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Though this step is optional, you can also add a thin border around the sides of the card. Take 4 thin strips of colored papers and glue them along the sides of the card.

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Are you ready to get crafty?  Print out the template and get started.
Happy Valentine’s Day!

 

Check out these fun Valentine’s Day Owls once your cards are finished!

7 Tips for Entertaining with Ease This Holiday Season!

This Post is Sponsored by Babbleboxx.com

7 Tips for Entertaining with Ease This Holiday Season!

The best part of the holidays is spending time with family and friends, making amazing memories.  Each year we have a family Christmas party on my mom’s side of the family, A friends Christmas get together, and another big party with my Dad’s side of the family on Christmas Eve.  We all take turns hosting these parties, so I know how easy it can be to get bogged down with the cooking and cleaning so that by the end of the night you realize you didn’t get to truly connect with anyone. 
That is such a crummy feeling to have, especially during the holidays.  So, I have a round up of 7 great items that will have your family thinking you’re a hosting superstar with ease so that you can find time to enjoy the festivities yourself!

Simplify the Hors D’oeuvres but keep them delicious with Castello Cheese.  These gourmet cheeses make creating the ultimate cheese board easy and tasty.  I tried the Aged Havarti, Gouda, and Traditional Danish Blue Cheese and every bite was delicious!  A cheese board is a perfect appetizer that can be made up in minutes.  Plus, if you don’t know what to pair together on your board, Castello has an online Custom Cheese Board Builder, that asks you several questions then creates a list of the best variety for your taste.

Keep your appetizers looking festive and stylish with Snowflake Hors D’oeuvres Picks from Cracker Barrel.
I am very impressed by the quality of these holiday picks, the kick the look of your tablescape up a notch, and they would also make perfect holiday gifts if you’re not the one hosting this year!
Use Code: SHOP30 to receive 30% off storewide.

Reduce fat and calories while also making sure the dishes will be easy to wash while cooking your holiday dinner, by using PAM Cooking Spray.  These non-aerosol cooking sprays have no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives, and give you a superior non-stick cooking surface.  I love how these bottles make it easy to control how much I’m using, and not having to soak and scrub my pans after dinner is a huge win!
Download the ibotta app and you can earn cash back on your purchase of PAM Spray Pump.

Have something special on hand for the little guests, like these adorable Reindeer and Santa Glass Milk Bottles from Cracker Barrel.  These Christmas milk bottles will definitely bring lots of little smiles to your dinner table, and after dinner, they would make an adorable Christmas decoration too.
Use Code: SHOP30 to receive 30% off storewide.

Keep the four-legged guests happy too with Wellness CORE Natural Pet Food.  This 100% grain free dog food contains dried raw bites of 100% meat with no fillers.  The recipe is high in protein for lean body mass and muscle tone but best of all, it must be yummy because our Brady ate up his whole bowl before I had time to put the bag away.

After the pups have a nutritious meal of their own treat them to a WHIMZEES Daily Dental Chew.  These great treats contain all-natural ingredients, freshen your dog’s breath, promote gum health, and clean their teeth.  Plus, they look adorable, and the kids love that Brady is brushing his teeth with us now!

And of course, it wouldn’t be a perfect holiday party without some beautiful decorations.  Luckily Christmas Central has everything you could possibly need to make your home into a magical Christmas setting.  From lights and trees to table linens and candle holders, Christmas Central is your one-stop shop for holiday decor and you don’t even have to leave your house.


I am in love with their Snowy Pine Flocked Tree and Trim, it is stunning!  I can imagine curling up on the couch with some hot cocoa and just watching the lights twinkle.

Are you hosting over the holidays?  I hope these products help make your festivities exciting and let you host with ease.

 

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!

 

The Ultimate Holiday Road Trip Planning Guide!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Shell. The opinions and text are all mine.

The Holiday Road Trip Planning Guide

Are you thinking about taking a family vacation this holiday season? My family is. We have made it a family tradition to travel up to Kiawah Island, South Carolina each holiday season. My brother works on a resort up there, and because he is usually the one traveling down to visit us, we make it a plan to spend a week together during either Thanksgiving or Christmas in his world. However, traveling during the holidays is a lot different than any other time of year. From planning out dinners and trying to get gifts to the destination, a lot more goes into a holiday vacation. Here are my top tips for planning a holiday vacation!

Finding a place to stay: During the holiday season, you may want more than just your typical hotel room to stay in. If your extended family is going, you may want connecting rooms or a multi-room villa. Think about if you want to cook holiday meals, decorations and how much space you need for everyone to make magical holiday memories.

During our holiday trips, it is my brother, my family of 5, and my parents staying together. Plus, we host a lot of my brother’s friends for dinner, so it makes sense for us to rent a house for the holiday. This gives us a full kitchen for cooking, a living room to spend time together in and enjoy Christmas morning in, plus we all have our own bedrooms.

If you have seen my last few travel posts, you know I am all about using my Fuel Rewards® card as much as possible! You can earn Fuel Rewards savings when booking your hotel, so make sure you head over to the website or app and check out which hotels are offering great rewards.

If you’re staying with family or friends decide on a great thank you gift and schedule it to be delivered or picked up along the way, the less packing the better.

Consider attractions in the area. We visit Kiawah island which offers a ton of fun activities all week long over the holidays. Check out your locations tourism board or call the hotel to check out what events they have planned, and if advanced reservations or tickets are needed.

Driving:

Driving up to South Carolina from Tampa only takes about 6 hours, which is the perfect amount of time for a fun road trip in my book. It’s enough time that you need to stop and eat, explore a couple welcome centers to stretch your legs, and still not have to break for the night anywhere. However, even when we lived in Massachusetts, we would drive to holiday vacations, and it was about 20 hours of road time.

With a family of 5, driving has always been a cost-effective travel option for us, plus with Shell and the Fuel Rewards® program, we are saving even more at the pump now! Also, with holiday travel there is extra luggage that is easier to transport by driving. When we spend Christmas on Kiawah, we wanted to have a Christmas tree, so that meant packing a tree stand, some ornaments, and of course our elf.

Quick Road Trip Tips to Keep the Kids in the Holiday Spirit: Pack holiday snacks to minimize stops! grab some holiday cookies and treats to keep the kids happy when you hear “I’m hungry” from the backseat.

Keep the kids entertained with small new toys from the dollar store. Wrap them up before you leave, and hand them out every couple hours for the kids to unwrap along the way.

Stop in each state to collect postcards as souvenirs! When we would travel from Massachusetts to Florida, we did this! It was a great way to mark off a chunk of travel and keep the kids excited. In the northern states, we were stopping every hour or two, but once we hit Virginia it is easily a 4 hour of travel time to check off.

Gifts

Are you traveling to visit family? Shop online and have gifts sent to their house instead of having to load your car with gifts, especially if your little ones still believe in Santa. Plus, make sure you check out the Fuel Rewards® site for some awesome stores to shop at for extra Fuel Rewards savings!

No family in the area? Try shopping online at stores that allow store pick up. Order all the gifts you need, and when you arrive at your location head over to the local department stores and pick everything up.

We did this for a Christmas in South Carolina and it was fun having an adult wrapping party after the kids fell asleep.

Also, think about local gifts if you are arriving early enough to go shopping. My son loves golf, so I make it a point to stop at the Kiawah Pro-Shop and grab him a Kiawah branded item.

Holiday Dinner

There are many restaurants and hotels that offer large delicious holiday dinners, however, my family loves cooking together and being around a family table to laugh and talk for as long as we’d like. We enjoy the relaxing feeling of a homey environment and on Thanksgiving, the guys want to be able to watch football.

However, that means shopping for a large meal in a new city. Make sure you’ve looked into the closest grocery stores and know their holiday hours. Plus make a list, and check it twice! A couple years ago, my husband was out looking for brown sugar late Christmas Eve and ended up spending about $10 for it at the resort store.

Also think about bring some extra bowls, mixing spoons, and disposable pans from home. Most hotel rooms with kitchens are advertised as fully stocked, but when it comes to cooking a full holiday meal it’s unlikely they’ll have enough items to cook everything comfortably.

Packing

Packing for a holiday trip requires a lot of items you wouldn’t need on an average road trip. For Christmas, talk with your family and decide how you’re handling a Christmas tree. Some hotels provide them, or you can bring your own fake one, skip it all together if your kids are older, or pack a tree stand and find a local tree farm.

One year we did this along with purchasing a bunch of dollar store decorations and making handmade ornaments. The kids still talk about that being their favorite Christmas tree ever.

Other items such as stockings, traditional holiday books, plus cookies and reindeer food needs to be added to the list along with your normal vacation packing list. Make sure you put a list together of all the holiday essentials you don’t want to make memories without.

Extra Savings with the Fuel Rewards Program!

The easiest way to save right now is by taking advantage of their limited time offer: Instant Gold Status. This savings has helped me stay on a budget during every fuel up. With the Instant Gold Status offer, everyone who joins gets a 5c/gal savings (up to 20 gallons per visit) every time you fuel up at a Shell location for at least the first 6 months from signup.

Plus, there are additional ways to save on fuel with the Fuel Rewards® program. When you link your debit or credit card to your Fuel Rewards® account you earn additional savings each time you shop or dine with participating merchants, like hotels and restaurants.

By stacking all these potential rewards, you can really save at the pump and stay on your holiday travel budget! Best of all it’s free to sign up!

Make sure to head over and sign up for the Fuel Rewards® program and start saving at the pump now!

After signing up send your referral link to friends and family so they can join the Fuel Rewards program. The first time a friend uses the program by earning a reward or using their card at a participating Shell station after registering with your link, you will instantly earn 25¢/gal (up to 20 gal). There’s no limit to how much you can save!

Are you traveling over the holidays? Follow our Thanksgiving road trip adventure this Thanksgiving on Instagram! What is your favorite travel tip?

*Restrictions apply. To qualify for the Gold/Silver Status offers, you must be a Fuel Rewards® member and swipe your Fuel Rewards® card or enter your Alt ID when you fuel at a participating Shell station. With Gold Status, you will receive 5¢/gal in Fuel Rewards® savings on every fill-up. The 5¢/gal reward for Gold Status will be combined with other rewards in your Fuel Rewards® account. If you are an existing Fuel Rewards® member, you will receive Gold Status from 6/5/2017 through 12/31/17, the “Existing Member Introductory Period.” If you are a new Fuel Rewards® member, you will receive Gold Status for the initial month you join through the last day of the month, 6 full calendar months later, the “New Member Introductory Period.” The last 3 months of the Existing Member Introductory Period or the New Member Introductory Period (collectively the “Introductory Period”) is the “Qualification Period.” You will retain your Gold Status during the Qualification Period, but you must make 6 qualifying fuel purchases to qualify for Gold Status for the next 3 months, the “Benefit Period.” During the Benefit Period, you must continue to make 6 qualifying fuel purchases to maintain your Gold Status for the next 3-month Benefit Period. A qualifying fuel purchase is any fuel purchase at a participating Shell station in which you swipe your Fuel Rewards® card or enter your Alt ID and fill up with at least 5-gallons of any grade of fuel. For example, if you are a new Fuel Rewards® member and register on 6/15/2017, you will receive Gold Status through the New Member Introductory Period (i.e., 12/31/2017). You will need to fill up with at least 5 gallons of fuel at least 6 times during the Qualification Period (i.e., 10/1/2017 and 12/31/2017) to maintain Gold Status during the Benefit Period (i.e., from 1/1/2018 to 3/31/2018). Thereafter, if you continue to fill up with at least 5 gallons of fuel at least 6 times during the successive 3 consecutive month Benefit Periods, you will retain your Gold Status. If you do not maintain your Gold Status, you will receive Silver Status. With Silver Status, you will receive 3¢/gal in Fuel Rewards® savings. The 3¢/gal reward for Silver Status will be combined with other rewards in your Fuel Rewards® account. Redeem Fuel Rewards® savings with your Fuel Rewards® card or Alt ID at participating Shell stations. Fuel Rewards® savings are limited to 20 gallons of fuel per purchase, per vehicle, or fraud limits placed by Shell and/or limits placed on your financial card by your financial institution, each of which may be lower. Fuel Rewards® savings must be redeemed in a single transaction. Once you begin to dispense fuel using your Fuel Rewards® savings, you must dispense to the 20-gallon limit or you forfeit any remaining discounted gallons of fuel. For example, if you only pump fifteen (15) gallons of fuel, you would abandon the remaining five (5) gallons of discounted fuel. If you have a rewards balance greater than the current per-gallon price of fuel, the price will roll down to the maximum capability of the fuel equipment, and your remaining rewards will be saved for a future fuel purchase. Dispenser may require a price of up to 10.9¢/gal. It may not be possible to combine multiple discounts and/or rewards in a single transaction. For purchases of $75 or more, please go inside to pay. Unbranded diesel and alternative fuels may not be eligible. The Fuel Rewards® program is owned and operated by Excentus Corporation. Offer may be modified or discontinued at any time without notice. Not valid where prohibited by law. Please see fuelrewards.com for complete Fuel Rewards® program details and Terms and Conditions. Other restrictions may apply. All trademarks are the property of their respective owners. To learn more, visit fuelrewards.com/gold or call (888) 603-0473

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