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Entries by Diane Schmidt (118)

Sunday
Jun282015

5 Great Kid's Birthday Party Ideas

Laser Tag

A mainstay of parties for children and teenagers alike in the 90s. Laser tag is still popular today. Running around in the dark holding a plastic weapon with a flashing light on your chest has never been so fun. It employs some physical activity too, so you won’t have to deal with a gang of unruly and restless children by the end of it.

Laser tag also uses some level of strategy too. In some ways, you could even say this is an educational trip because of it. Of course, the adults may need to help with some coordination and battle plans. It’s a good all-round party that’s fun for everybody.

 

The Cinema

This depends highly on whether your local cinema facilitates children’s parties or not. While you can take a small group of around three or four children to the cinema if you want to take around ten or more you’re likely going to have to rent out the screen.

There’s also no guarantee that any suitable films will be showing. While kids films are out fairly regularly in the cinema, the trip may fall into one of the very few blank spots where there just isn’t anything age-appropriate.

There’s also the chance that the film itself may not be any good. That can be tolerable as an adult, but if a whole cinema full of children dislike the film, you may have trouble on your hands.

If you get lucky, there will be a film both children and adults alike can enjoy.

 

Theme Park

This one can get a little expensive. While some theme parks do group passes, any great number of children will cost a significant amount. That said, theme parks can be exhilarating. It’s important that your child wants to go though. Some children aren’t really into rides or roller coasters, and taking them to a theme park might be a waste.

 

If they do enjoy rides and rollercoasters though, they’re going to have a great time. It’s advised some other parents come with you to the theme park though. Handling a group of children yourself can be difficult. You want to avoid them wandering off too. Provided you’ve got the appropriate backup, you should be fine.

 

Disco

This is fairly risky. If your child is young enough not to have developed any musical taste, this will go fine. If they have, however, you’re going to need to ask them to put together a set list of favorite songs. You don’t want to be the uncool parent who hires a cheap and cheesy disco DJ to play a set more for the parents than the kids.

You need to hire a space first of all. A church hall or community centre will usually rent out their space for parties such as this. If you’ve got a few nearby, see which one has the nicest facilities or at least works out the cheapest.

Next, you need to hire the DJ. Not just any DJ will suffice, you need a DJ that expressly says they do children’s parties. You don’t want to hire accidentally someone who goes a drum and bass set at raves.

 

 

The Zoo Or A Farm

On the subject of animals, a trip to the zoo is another great choice. Provided it’s a nice day and the animals are out of course. Children are enthralled by exotic animals they’ve only seen on television. Getting a good look at them up close is a real treat for all the family.

 

If you don’t live near a zoo, you could try a farm visit instead. There won’t be any lions or tigers, but the children won’t care. They can get a lot more up close and personal with the animals at a farm too, especially if they have a petting zoo.

Thursday
Jun252015

Minion Twinkies Printable

Such a cute idea, perfect for the movie coming up in theatres on July 11th!
Go here to print these Minion Twinkie wraps.
Thursday
May282015

14 Crock-Pot Dishes for Potlucks

Throwing a party can be serious business, so it's good to find shortcuts whenever possible. I love using my slow cooker to simmer up dips, side dishes, desserts, and more. The recipes I follow require very little attention and always end up tasting great, so consider adding one of these Crock-Pot dishes to your next party menu!

1. SPINACH ARTICHOKE DIP

Making spinach artichoke dip is a breeze in the pot. Toss together artichoke hearts, spinach, sour cream, onion, garlic, parmesan cheese, milk, feta, mayo, cream cheese, and seasonings. Cook on low for two hours and stir.

2. QUESO DIP

Here's a copycat recipe of Chili's queso dip that all your guests will enjoy. And it takes just five minutes of prep. Combine Velveeta cheese with milk, cayenne pepper, paprika, canned chili, and a few more spices for just one to two hours.

3. CHEESE FONDUE

You can use white grape juice or white wine for this irresistible cheese fondue recipe. The rest is a mixture of shredded Swiss, Emmental, and Gruyere cheeses, flour, nutmeg, and garlic. Don't forget to warm your pot before adding the cheese — it'll melt faster that way.

4. CHOCOLATE FONDUE

Surprise your guests with s'mores fondue in the pot. You'll need milk chocolate chips, marshmallows, whipping cream, and graham crackers or fresh fruit for dipping. Combine all ingredients and cook for around two hours on low.

5. CHEX MIX

Or cook up a crispy Chex mix snack. You'll need a mix of corn, rice, and wheat Chex with pretzels, oat cereal, peanuts, butter, Worcestershire sauce, and garlic powder. Cook for three hours, stirring occasionally, then let cool on baking sheets before serving.

6. HOT DOGS

Did you know you can fit 60 hot dogs in a six quart slow cooker? Stack them vertically, cook on low for four hours (or high for two hours), and you'll have enough hot dogs to feed a hungry crowd.

7. MEATBALLS

These three-ingredient Crock-Pot meatballs come together in a flash. You'll need frozen meatballs, grape jelly, and BBQ sauce. Stir the sauces together before adding the meat and cook for three hours.

8. SEVEN LAYER DIP

You can even make seven layer dip in your pot. Pile refried beans, diced green chilis, ground beef, sour cream, salsa, shredded cheese, olives, and more in your cooker and heat on low for two hours. Vegetarians could experiment with meat substitute — like TVP or tempeh — in place of the meat.

9. CORN ON THE COB

If your grill space is limited, try cooking your corn on the cob indoors. You'll wrap the corn in foil packets with whatever seasonings you like best. From experience, I love adding basil, salt, and pepper to mine, so the pesto variety looks amazing.

10. BAKED BEANS

These vegetarian bourbon maple Baked beans take some extra time, but the taste is well worth the effort. You'll soak a pound of dried white or navy beans overnight, then combine them with bourbon, maple syrup, BBQ sauce, brown sugar, and some other sauces and spices. Cook for around 12 hours for the best results.

11. GARLIC BREAD

Many guests like a good side of carbs with their meals. Serve them thisgarlic Parmesan pull-apart bread. You can even make it easy by using store-bought biscuit dough. You'll cut each biscuit into six pieces before coating in a butter and garlic mixture. Bake in your Crock-Pot for two to three hours on low.

12. PULLED PORK

You can use this pulled pork in sandwiches, soft tacos, or whatever else you like. Just take pork shoulder and combine it with spices, sauces, and other seasonings in your slow cooker. Set the temperature to low for eight hours. Pork is done when it shreds easily using a fork.

13. UPSIDE DOWN CAKE

Satisfy your friends' sugar cravings with this pineapple upside down cake. You'll layer the bottom of your crock pot with canned pineapple and maraschino cherries. Then top with some yellow cake mix batter and bake for three hours on high.

14. BUFFALO WINGS

Or jazz up game night with these Crock-Pot Buffalo wings. Coat frozen wings in a delicious sauce before cooking for four hours. You'll then take the wings out of the pot and brown them in your oven for 20 minutes. Serve with a peppery hot sauce.

Source: Wisebread.com

Thursday
May282015

LEGO Edible Gummy Treats

Find out how to make these adorable LEGO gummy treats. Perfect for a party!

 

Thursday
May212015

12 Safe-Keep These Documents with Master Lock

Here are 12 of the most important papers you should have locked up, in a safe like Master Lock Keyed Locking File Box

1. Property insurance policies and agent contact information. You'll need this information right away if your house suffers damage and you need to know how to file a claim.

 

2. Passports and original birth certificates. These can be a hassle to replace and will come in handy to establish identity when traveling with children.

 

3. A list of family doctors, prescription medications, and contact information for all pharmacies you use. You may need these to get new supplies of medications you use on a regular basis.

 

4. CDs or an external hard drive containing digital copies of all family photos. It's a good idea to scan all older family photos and keep a digital copy of them as well. Your family memories in photographs are irreplaceable.

 

5. Safe deposit box keys. If you store valuables in a bank safe deposit box, you'll want to make sure you keep the keys to it in a safe place.

 

6. Important papers related to investments, retirement plans, bank accounts, and associated contact information. You may also want to keep some cash on hand for ready access in an emergency.

 

7. Information on your outstanding debts, due dates, and contact information. It's important to keep tabs on your finances and protect your credit, in the event you're displaced by a fire.

 

8. Original Social Security cards. These can take time to replace and may be needed to establish eligibility for benefits.

 

9. Copies of your important legal documents, including powers of attorney, living wills, and health care proxies -- both for yourself and for anyone else for whom you are designated attorney-in-fact or health care surrogate. Having access to these can help ensure the protection they were created to provide.

 

10. Copy of wills and all wills in which you are designated the executor. It's important to have access to these as safe deposit boxes are typically sealed upon notification of the box owner's death.

 

11. Valuables: Jewelry, coins, cash, etc. that you may want access to from time to time.

 

12. Spare Keys and titles to all vehicles. It helps to know where copies are in the case that you need them.

So what should you use to keep everything safe? I recommend the Masterlock Locking File Box!

The Master Lock No. 7148D Locking File Box is made from durable steel construction to stand up to daily use. The file box measures 13-1/2in (34.3cm) W x 10-1/2in (26.7cm) H x 6in (15.2cm) D. The keyed lock safely protects and secures your personal documents. The Limited Lifetime Warranty provides peace of mind from a brand you can trust.
Thursday
Mar262015

42 Cutest DIY Projects

Feeling crafty? Go hereto get the instructions for these 42 adorable craft projects!

 

Thursday
Mar192015

Free Target, Fandango and More Gift Cards

 

Before heading out shopping, be sure to download Shopkick first! SIGN UP, it's totally free! They regularly offer high value kicks (points) just for walking into stores like Old Navy, Walmart, Macy's and more! When you earn a gift card, it is sent directly to your phone instantly! So easy!

Get started here! I've been using Shopkick for 2+ years and have cashed in points for gift cards to Fandango, Target and more.

Not familiar with Shopkick? Shopkick is a free mobile app for your iPhone or Android mobile smart phone.  By allowing it to see your location using your GPS, it will automatically recognize when you enter a participating store, retailer, or restaurant, then reward you.  You'll earn "Kickbucks" by simply entering the store and can earn by scanning barcodes within the store.  

Monday
Mar022015

Peeps Easter Candles

Stop by your local Yankee Candle for those adorable Peeps candles. Easter is April 5 this year!