Monday, September 15, 2014

$100 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway


Who couldn't use $100 in Amazon cash? I know I could! One lucky winner will take home this fantastic prize.

I've teamed up with some awesome bloggers to bring you this prize - make sure you stop by and show them some love.

Savings Mania

Zealous Mom

Love Jaime

Grown Ups Magazine

Pin-n-Tell

Director Jewels (hey, that's me!)

Mommy Has to Work

My Sweet Sanity

What will you buy if you're the winner?

Giveaway

One reader will win a $100 Amazon Gift Card! This giveaway will end on October 7 at 11:59pm. This giveaway is open to all.

To enter the giveaway, follow the instructions in the Rafflecopter form below (you may need Javascript enabled to see the form and it may take a moment to load)! Once you complete the first entry, the other options will open up so that you can complete them as well. All of the "extra entries" are optional - you can do just one, or as many as you want! Winners will be contacted by email. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: No compensation was received for participating in this giveaway and all views expressed are my own. For more information, you can read my Giveaway Policy and my Disclosure Policy.

37/52



"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2014."
 
Lincoln - So excited about the first day of preschool!
Addie - NOT as excited about preschool, more interested in running away. That little curl kills me!
 
Linking up at Practising Simplicity.

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey presents Built to Amaze! at Kansas City's Sprint Center

Disclosure: I received something of value from Feld Entertainment as part of their Insider Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.


When I was growing up, I never went to the circus. Sometimes when I tell people that, they think it's crazy! I really don't think it made much of a difference in my happiness as a kid. Nevertheless, when I had the chance to take my own kids on their first trip to the circus to see Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey presents DRAGONS last fall, we found that it's definitely an amazing experience. We were excited to head to the Kansas City Sprint Center again this year to see the new touring show from Ringling Bros and Barnum & Bailey: Built to Amaze!


It's a show that is designed to amaze, and it does not disappoint! From the opening number to the death-defying feats of the troupe, to the performing animals and right to the last confetti explosion, this performance certainly amazed us.

Led by Ringmaster Andre McClain (a Kansas City native), the many performers of Built to Amaze! have assembled a dazzling display of spectacles to wow all of their audience members - young and old alike!

The first act that made me gasp out loud was that of Dmitry Dolgikh and Nadejhda Tarasova, a husband and wife team who performed an unbelievable Iron Jaw act - where Dima lifted Nadia more than 30 feet in the air, using only his jaw. Yes. His jaw. I was astounded. I didn't even know something like that was possible!

The kids were fond of the trucks driven by the circus clowns.

A few other highlights included:

-The paint fight by the troupe of Clown Alley. It was hilarious!

-Watching Francleib Rodrigues walk upside down on the ceiling. He uses loops on the ceiling to keep him in an inverted position and uses no safety harness or line. It was unbelievable. My heart was in my throat the entire act!

-The Trampoline Tower Tumblers were one of my favorite acts to watch. These eight performers performed incredible stunts on the combination of two trampolines, powerful acrobatics, and a 12-foot tower. It was cool!



Due to the short attention span of our 1- and 3-year-old kids, we missed a couple of acts: the Danguir Troupe (cyclists on high wires) and Gemma Querida Kirby, the Human Cannonball. I am bummed that we had to skip them, but our kids needed a break to run around the lobby and work off some energy by the end of Act I.


The Stars of the Steel Vortex gave another unbelievable performance. There were four performers who were riding inside and on top of the two rings while they spun unbelievably fast. When they broke out jump ropes and started doing tricks while walking on top of the loops, I was terrified that they would fall to their doom! But it was a beautiful act met with thunderous applause.

I tell you what. I could never be a circus performer. At least not one who does crazy stunts like that!


I don't have any great photos of the animal acts, but Addie's favorite acts were definitely the "horsies" and "el-phants" and "doggies." I couldn't get Lincoln to tell me his favorite part, he just said "anything!" (which, in Lincoln-speak, means everything). It was a night of amazement and wonder, for sure!


Huge thanks to Feld Entertainment for providing my family's tickets to the show.  I received no other compensation and all views expressed are my own.  For more information, you can read my Disclosure Policy

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Just Between Friends Overland Park Sale + My #BestDeal

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Just Between Friends of Lee’s Summit and Overland Park. This program is in partnership with Real Mom Media.  All opinions are my own.

What do you do when you have one income, two kids, and a desire to dress those kids in cute fashions? There are a couple of options.

1) You overspend and end up in financial trouble.
2) You cart your kids around to thrift stores and garage sales and snag a piece here or there, but have endless wars about getting in and out of the car so much.
3) You shop at kid's consignment sales.


I choose to not lose all of my money or all of my sanity, and consistently go with option 3. Consignment sales are - to put it mildly - freaking awesome. Not only are they a magnificent way to recap some of your cost when your kids have outgrown their clothing and toys, they offer shoppers the chance to buy everything you could ever need for a child in one location. Most moms tend to shop for the upcoming season (which is why you'll find sales happening at the beginning of spring and fall), but you can also scour larger sizes and start a stash of items so that the financial burden of clothing your children is not so large as they age.

Kansas City moms, I'm here to tell you about a sale you don't want to miss.

Overland Park International Trade Center
Open to the public September 11-14

Thursday, September 11 - 9am to 8pm
Friday, September 12 - 9am to 8pm
Saturday, September 13 - 9am - 5pm
Sunday, September 14 (Half Price Day) - 9am - 5pm


Yesterday, I met up with a fantastic group of local bloggers for lunch and shopping, courtesy of Just Between Friends of Overland Park and Lees Summit. We had the chance to preview the Overland Park fall sale, and it is stuffed to overflowing with amazing deals for kids of all ages. I set out with a mission to find the #BestDeal at the sale - but I didn't have much of a plan. I have a decent stockpile of clothing for both kids for the upcoming season, and heaven knows neither of them actually needs any more toys.

So, my goal was just to find anything that I could not pass up.


I started off in the winter clothing section - yes, an entire section dedicated to just coats and snow apparel for kids! Lincoln loved the snow last winter and Addie is definitely going to be more interested than she was now that she can move a little better, so I know they're going to beg and plead with me to let them out in the snow this year. I found a pair of size 4/5 snow pants in like-new condition for $5. What a deal!


Honestly, I barely even scratched the surface of all the available clothing. I looked through some of the 2T and 3T clothing and found a few sweet dresses for Addie for this fall/winter. It can be very difficult to have restraint when you are shopping at a consignment sale because there are soooo many cute things - but the good news is, since you are saving money by shopping consignment, you can buy more than your budget might allow otherwise.


There is always an extreme abundance of toys. This sale was particularly nice because it was divided by toy type and/or character. There was a section of Little People (pictured above), Mickey Mouse, Disney Princess, Dora the Explorer, Thomas the Tank Engine, American Girl, and so many more. For those who head to a sale looking for a specific character, this means a whole lot less searching and digging - yay!

But, as at most sales, my favorite section was the books and educational materials. Maybe it's the former librarian in me, or the homeschooling planner - but either way, there's something about the draw of pre-loved books that gets me super excited. You just never know what you might find - like this Beauty & the Beast graphic novel for $1.00.


A graphic novel. Seriously!

And then, this really vintage The Story of Star Wars book for $1.50!


My husband was pretty excited when I showed this book to him.


For the kids, I found several really great titles to add to our library. Each of these titles were significantly under retail - the Usborne touchy-feely That's Not My Tractor was $1.50. If you don't already love Usborne, you should get yourself some, stat. My kids were obsessed with The Potty Train when we checked it out from the library (after I lifted our library book ban), and they love seek-and-find and lift-the-flap books, so the others were a no-brainer. We'll use the Christmas Little People book in our Christmas advent tradition this year.


By the time I was done shopping, I had gathered three giant bags full of amazing things to bring home with me. Definitely more than I had intended to purchase, but I have no regrets. I just may not be allowed at the next consignment sale since we definitely have everything we need for Christmas!

It's taken me a bit to decide what my #BestDeal from the Overland Park Just Between Friends sale was - in fact, I couldn't narrow it down to just one. So here are my four favorite finds!


Brain Quest Preschool - 2 sets - retail price $23.90, I paid $5.00.
Plush Disney Baby Lady - retail price $22.95, I paid $4.00.
Fireman Raincoat - retail price $33.61, I paid $7.00.
Usborne Road Trip Activity Cards - retail price $9.99, I paid $4.00.

That is a total of $90.45 retail items for just $20, a savings of 78%!

So....why are you not shopping consignment sales yet? Your excuses all just became completely invalid. Find your next local sale. And if you're in Kansas City, get to #JBFKC in Overland Park before the sale ends tomorrow!

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Just Between Friends of Lee’s Summit and Overland Park. This program is in partnership with Real Mom Media.  All opinions are my own.
For more information, you can read my Disclosure Policy

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Doc McStuffins: School of Medicine DVD Review + Giveaway

Disclosure: I received a sample DVD to facilitate my review. All opinions expressed are my own.

My little girl thinks Doc McStuffins is pretty cool. She loves her Doc doll so much that we bought a spare and we rotate them so that they maintain the same level of filthiness extreme love in case (heaven forbid) we ever lose one.

I am always very excited for the release of a new collection of episodes on DVD. We don't have a cable subscription or Netflix or any TV that we have to pay for on a regular basis. We usually have every episode in our DVD collection just about memorized by the time there is a new release! So, I've been very happy this week that Doc McStuffins: School of Medicine hits shelves today!

Here's the official synopsis:
 In "Doc McStuffins: School of Medicine,” a compilation of engaging Doc McStuffins stories, the many specialties in which doctors practice medicine and health care are highlighted for young kids to comprehend.  In her playhouse clinic, Doc is an optometrist, helping her stuffed owl toy, Professor Hoostburgh, to see clearly again.  As a dentist, she fixes a tooth on Donny’s toy shark Mr. Chomp and, as a radiologist, Doc takes an inside look at Daisy’s arm after a Roller Disco fall.  Then, Doc accidentally sprains her own ankle, so it’s up to her toys to provide the care and compassion to Doc herself and with rest,  patience and plenty of cuddles, she will be as good as new, singing  “The Doc is in.”

This collection features five new episodes that all focus on a special medical field.

1 – Chilly Gets Chilly / Through The Reading Glass (Optometry)

2 – Hallie’s Happy Birthday / Shark-Style Toothache (Dentistry)

3 – Think Pink / You Foose, You Lose (Sports Medicine)

4 – Disco Dress Up Daisy / The Glider Brothers (Imaging/Radiology)

5 – Celestial Celeste / Run Doc, Run! (Imaging/Radiology)


I love that there are new characters introduced (the new owl toy is adorable), plus visits from old favorites like Dress Up Daisy. Lincoln and Addie both have really enjoyed previewing this collection, and like to gather all of our stuffed Doc toys up to watch with them. There is also an excessive amount of "checking up" that goes on in normal playtime around here! Doc has clearly left her mark.


Are you excited for this new DVD release? Will it join your collection soon?

Giveaway

One Director Jewels reader will win Doc McStuffins: School of Medicine on DVD! This giveaway will end on September 26 at 11:59pm CST. This giveaway is open to US and Canadian readers only. Winner will be emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or prize will be forfeited.

To enter the giveaway, follow the instructions in the Rafflecopter form below (you may need Javascript enabled to see the form and it may take a moment to load)! Once you complete the first entry, the other options will open up so that you can complete them as well. All of the "extra entries" are optional - you can do just one, or as many as you want! Winners will be contacted by email. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Disclosure: I received a sample DVD for the purpose of this review and I am not responsible for fulfillment of the giveaway prize! I received no other compensation and all views expressed are my own. For more information, you can read my Giveaway Policy and my Disclosure Policy.
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