Christmas, Gifts, Holiday, Uncategorized

On The Tenth Day of Christmas…

day-10

DAY 10: Party/Family Games!!!!

Three games that are sure to be a hit on game night.

Ticket To Ride by Days of Wonder

Ticket to Ride is a cross-country train adventure in which players collect and play matching train cards to claim railway routes connecting cities throughout North America.

The longer the routes, the more points they earn.

Additional points come to those who can fulfill their Destination Tickets by connecting two distant cities, and to the player who builds the longest continuous railway.

Taboo by Hasbro

Taboo is the game of unspeakable fun! Can you get your team to say Brain Freeze? What if you can’t say Ice Cream, Headache, Eating, Cold or Fast? Not so easy now, is it? When you play Taboo, the obvious clues are strictly taboo! You have to give creative, carefully-worded clues to get your team to guess words fast. But don’t mention unmentionables, or you’ll get the squeaker and lose the point! Once you’ve mastered the classic game, you can use the game-changer die to mix it up. If it lands on One Guesser, only one teammate can guess on your turn. With 4 other possibilities on the die, you’d better be shrewd, quick-thinking and willing to take some risks – but don’t get shut down by the squeaker!

Classic Taboo game challenges you to guess words and phrases! You lose a point if you use any of the Taboo words! Game-changer die lets you change up the game once you’ve mastered the classic version! When a describer uses any Taboo words, use the squeaker to squeak them!

Party Encore by Endless Games

This Party Encore Game is perfect for entertaining tweens, teens and adults. The object is to recall the most songs that contain a set of specific words. This game cranks up the fun with an electronic “Slap-Timer” to volley the Encore buzz word back and forth until the time runs out on some unlucky player or team. At this party, it’s not about being the best singer, but rather knowing the most songs and lyrics.

To enter this giveaway click the following link and follow the options for multiple entries:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

…And don’t forget, if you are just now finding The 12 Days of Christmas Giveaways, all promos are open until 12.13.16 @ 11:59pm so feel free to go back and get your name in the hat for some amazing products!

Christmas, Gifts, Holiday, Uncategorized

On The First Day of Christmas…

day-1-v-2woohoo-img-8

Where do you WooHoo?

Need a fun gift idea for the kids? This gift is the perfect indoor/outdoor gift for younger kids, teenagers or adults! The WooHoo2.o® Outdoor Inflatable Lounger sets up quickly without a pump. It’s ideal for outdoor lounging, camping or fun at the beach. Heck, my kids would set them up in the living room for family movie night!

The inflatable lounger is portable and ultra-light weight, you can carry it anywhere, anytime. It inflates easily without a pump and deflates just as quickly and easily as it inflates (always important) and it has two pockets on the side to hold books and mobile devices (for the older kids of course).

How is WooHoo2.0® different?

USA – Unlike other companies selling outdoor inflatable products, they are located in the USA and have been selling inflatables for over 25 years!

NEW PATENT PENDING DESIGN  Their new WooHoo2.0® is larger and much more comfortable than the traditional canoe shape.

CHARITY – A portion of the profits on every WooHoo2.0® sold goes to their orphan/abandoned children charity at MercyHomes.org which is currently helping over 200 children grow up in a home.

When this item is deflated it fits nicely in its own portable bag. The Outdoor Inflatable Lounger comes in multiple fun colors so your kids (if they’re like mine) don’t fight over whose is whose!

To enter this giveaway click the following link and follow the options for multiple entries:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Christmas, Holiday, Kids, Parenting, Uncategorized

Trees…Tinsel… and Three Kids

img_4367img_4364Yesterday we took our annual trip to the Wisconsin Tree Farm to pick out the O’Brien Family Christmas Tree… not to be confused with the Griswold Family Tree. Daniel and I are the perfect mix of picking a tree that has no business being in our modest size home. I always go for the tall ones and he always goes for the big round ones. Usually, by the time the tree is in the house there is NO room for a star or angel as the top is smashed into the ceiling and if you indulged a bit too much at Thanksgiving you’re going to have to find an alternative route around the tree as it’s usually so round that it takes up the entire walkway.

The Wisconsin Tree Farm is a great family owned business right on College Street in Fayetteville. Each year the Latzig family from Merrill Wisconsin comes to Fayetteville, lives in a camper and sells their homegrown Christmas trees in the Gator Golf parking lot. They have all types, Balsam Fir, Douglas Fir, Fraser Fir and Scotch Pine just to name a few. We have purchased a tree from this family every year we’ve lived in Fayetteville.

 

We don’t have a designer tree, never have… but I love our tree as it’s covered in ornaments that both my husband and I have collected as well as the kids handmade ornaments they’ve made each year at school. It’s colorful and about 75% of the tree is covered in some type of kid craft that involves glitter, paint, and sequins.

Am I the only one that has this grand picture in my head of how decorating the family tree should go? Let me set the stage for you…

We are all in the living room listening to the Pandora Christmas radio station, fire flickering and hot chocolate or egg nog in everyone’s cup. We all sit patiently while my husband puts the lights on the tree. After all the lights are hung each child goes to their marked Rubbermaid tub and begins placing their ornaments on the tree, taking turns and making sure they are well spaced in order to have a well-balanced tree. all three kids listen to me as I say, “Be sure to put the heavy ones on the top branches.” After the tree is covered in ornaments we sit and listen to the music and stare at the tree filled with lights while everyone gets sleepy for the night.

NOPE, not at all close to the madness that happened here last night (remember my post on Hostage Negotiating?) … Here’s the real picture…

We are all in the same room most of the time and yes, Pandora radio is playing some of our favorite Christmas tunes, but there is no flickering fireplace as it’s a little too warm for that just yet. No one has hot chocolate or egg nog at this point because the milk that my ten-year-old was trying to boil in the tea kettle is shooting out the whistle whole as it got waaaaaaaayy too hot. I’m burning my fingers trying to clean up boiling milk from the stove while my son is yelling from the other room that he’s hungry and my two-year-old is screaming at the top of her lungs because we won’t let her touch any ornaments. It’s finally time for the lights. I work to get the lights on the tree as my husband unravels and checks each strand… Apparently, we aren’t moving fast enough for my son who is trying to see how many times he can slide off the arm of the sofa onto the ground behind the tree and make his way out without touching any branches… our very own American Ninja Warrior!

After all the lights are finally on the tree, it’s time for the ornaments. Now you know those Rubbermaid tubs I was talking about, each marked and organized with each child’s ornaments… HA, wishful thinking… we have four to five buckets full of ornaments wrapped in 5-year-old newspaper and old grocery bags (read this blog from Rubbermaid – awesome storage idea for ornaments). The kids are holding the newspaper and unraveling them so quick that ornaments are hitting the floor like raindrops. We ALWAYS have a designated area for ornaments that need to be glued back together, because we just can’t do it without breaking any. We should probably buy stock in Gorilla Glue this time of year. The kids are all trying to attack the tree at once and all the heavy ornaments that they placed on the weak lower branches are hitting the floor one by one. My two-year-old is climbing the ladder that I forgot to move post – Christmas tree lights and as soon as you go up to make sure she doesn’t fall she repeatedly tells you “GO WAY!” By this time I have stepped on at least three hooks and a shard of glass from the broken ornaments (think  Marv from Home Alone entering the window with no shoes).

My two-year-old has now come up with a new strategy to reach the branches she can’t quite get to, toss those Christmas balls right on up towards the tree and see if they’ll stick … of course bringing two or three other ornaments down along the way! By this time the tree is pretty full and I start hiding ornaments because we need to wrap this party up before someone falls off the ladder or has to go to the emergency room for glass removal. The two-year-old is now standing over by the wooden nativity scene picking up each animal and very loudly showing off that she knows her animal noises.

My husband and I escape to the garage for 60 seconds to put all the empty boxes away… we pause and look at each other like we’ve just been through an F5 tornado and bust out laughing while we hold each other up from exhaustion.

It’s the same thing every year… I have a pretty picture in my mind about how it’s supposed to go, and then it goes in a completely different direction. It’s crazy and the house is now covered in glitter, pine needles and ornament hooks (I used the old trusty Hoover Wind Tunnel to get the glass up already… that thing is like the perfect kid, cleans up and very quiet) but in the end, everyone had a good time. The kids will remember the laughs and their baby sister telling everyone to go away and saying “haw hee” as she holds up the donkey from the manger scene (one of these days we’ll tell her it’s hee-haw, but it’s just so darn cute). For now, I’ll treasure the years we have left with each of them while they want to be around us, want to help decorate and make fun family memories. I can’t wait to see what next years tornado will bring!

What is your family Christmas tree/decorating tradition?

fullsizerender