Someone got a big girl bed!

When we moved to our new home in December, we toyed with the idea of not moving A’s crib at all and moving her straight to a toddler bed since she had just turned 2.  I felt with the new surroundings and having stairs for the first time, I didn’t want her to experience a sensory overload so, we decided to wait until we were well settled in.  Over the last month or so I had been looking online   for the perfect bed and was really having commitment issues!  Surprise, surprise!  I found several on the ikea website that I liked but it was so hard to decide without seeing them in person.  Her room has an ice cream shop theme so I wanted a cute little bed that would work with that but be versatile in case I decided to change themes on a whim.  A friend who was also shopping for a toddler bed had told me that the Ikea beds were oddly shaped and thus normal bedding would not work, you would be restricted to their bedding so I had to see how big of a difference the sizing was and if it was a problem easily rectified.  I had finally decided on the OVERE bed with canopy so my mom and I decided to make the drive to Frisco to check it out in person last Saturday.  It was so super cute but we were going to have to change the colors of the flags for the canopy and in the end I thought we might like a bigger bed.

You can find the OVERE bed here:

http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/S59012280/

The mattress size appeared to be that of a standard twin mattress if not a hair smaller.  I honestly think normal twin bedding would fit it alright but you’ll have to check the dimensions on the website and compare with another manufacturer if you’re considering it.

We fell in love with the Minnen bed which isn’t available online apparently but you can always google it!  It reminded us of an old fashioned wrought iron bed that was perfect for our ice cream shop theme!  We chose it in black but it’s also averrable in white. The frame itself is adjustable and so is the mattress.  I wondered how this would be accomplished initially but it’s a pretty neat little system!  The mattress is the width of a twin sized bed because the twin sheets fit perfectly that way.  At it’s smallest size, it is about the length of a crib mattress.  I used her crib mattress to show you the difference in size here:

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To extend the bed, you simply remove the bolts and slide the frame out and then replace the bolts.  The mattress has 2 extender pieces that almost look like pillows.  One for the head and one for the foot so when you’re ready to add on you just add one piece at a time.  I figure I will add on next year and then again the next.

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this is one of the the mattress extender pieces.  When all 3 pieces are assembled, it is about the size of an extra long twin.  Think your old dorm room bed!  lol

I bought regular twin size sheets rather than purchasing from ikea because their selection left something to be desired.  I found 2 fabulous sets at Ross for $10 each!  I was super excited because they matched the ice cream treat printed comforter that my mother had made her when she was born perfectly!  One was a polka dot print that reminded me of sprinkles and the other was a coordinating stripe print of the same brand.  My intentions were to alter the sheet to fit but it really only needed a little tucking at the foot and it worked well without moving so I decided to let them be.  I used the flat sheet to cover one of the mattress extenders to fit at the head of the bed so the little darling wouldn’t whack her head on the metal frame behind her.  Again, I intended to sew this to fit but I just wrapped it on snuggly and secured the edges with rubber bands.  Really, I just wanted to see what it would look like before I got to cutting but it looked so cute like a big piece of candy or something so Mom and i decided it should stay that way.  I’m going to tie some bows for extra cuteness.  Then when she gets older and no longer needs the bumper, she can still use the flat sheet as intended since it hasn’t been cut.

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I’ve tucked the other part of the mattress securely in a plastic bag for protection on the top of her closet.  Today, I’m going to go hunt for a fabulous tiny nightstand to put the ice cream lamp I ordered her on next to her bed.

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It should arrive in the next day or so from one of my favorite websites of random home decor ever:

http://www.greatbigstuff.com/collections/food-drink/products/ice-cream-cone

The first night she got out of bed once and then slept soundly till morning and has slept in it without incident since.  She loves her big girl bed and I can’t wait to finally get her room finished in this house!  More pictures of her room to come once I get it all settled once and for all!  For now, I’ll leave you to enjoy her cute bed and her extra cute face!

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Overall, the bed was easily enough assembled (I think so anyway, I was more so supervising as my dad assembled it!  lol).  It is sturdy and adorable and my little sure enjoys it so far!  I like that it’ll last her a little longer too.  Don’t forget you need TWIN size slats if you are purchasing this bed at ikea.  I accidentally grabbed the wrong kind and dad have to have wood cut for the bottom for me!  Ooops.  Thanks Daddy!

Smash booking

Before I had kids, heck, when I only had 1 kid, I loved to scrapbook. I had a bazillion shape makers, corner rounders, paper stashes, stickers, and other assorted awesomeness. I would spend hours cutting my pictures into shapes with my Creative Memories custom cutting system and then cut cute little papers for photo mats and decorative flair. P’s scrapbook is amazing with hand cut and drawn layered paper Oreo cookies to commemorate her first ever cookie. Years 1-4 are detailed, colorful, and organized. Then I had T and all my well made scrap booking plans went out the window and my bins upon bins of fabulous scrap booking tools sat and collected dust in the garage. After our 3rd little princess was born, I realized I wouldn’t have a chance to play with my scrap booking stuff again until they were all in grade school and I was all alone for a few hours daily in sweet blissful silence! But there’s still lots of stuff I want to remember in the meantime. Dates with my hubby, craft projects I made with the girls, etc.

Enter K&Company Smash books.

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They retail for around $15 but you can get them for less by using a Michael’s or Hobby Lobby coupon, I know I did!😃
What on earth is a smash book you might be asking…
A smash book my friends is sort of a journal, meets a scrapbook, meets a tangible pinterest! It’s a scrapbook for the creatively challenged or for those of us who are now too busy to sit down and let our creative juices freely flow! Each Smash book has a theme and is choked full of built in awesomeness and zany printed pages.
Here’s a peek at some of the many smash books I’m currently working on and some of my smash accessories stash too!
This is my own personally random, mish mash, quirky Smashbook. I doodled like a school girl on the front cover and all over the inside too and added some nifty little clearance chipboard items to the front for character.

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One of the features that makes the smash book so neat is the included smash stick which is a great felt tip marker on one end and a glue stick on the other end. This is great for dysfunctional, unorganized, on-the-go crafters like myself!

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K and Company offers a whole plethora of cute and unique accessories to give your book an added boost of fabulousness and provide some easy storage for those souvenirs and other assorted keepsakes. There’s pockets, and labels, and baggies oh my!

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They also have a vast variety of “smash pads” to choose from. Each smash pad is choked full of themed notes and journal prompts to help you remember every last detail of whatever event or project that you care to smash into your book.

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What do you put in a Smashbook? ANYTHING YOU WANT!!! I’ve got magazine clippings, random things I’ve printed from the internet, catalog clipping wish lists, ticket stubs, pictures, and other random tidbits in mine! The back of each book has a built on pocket for extra smash ability.

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K & Company sells fancy “smash tape” but I like a little glitter in my life so I bought a ton of Reflections brand tape at Michael’s on sale and cut slits in one of my children’s shoe boxes to make a handy little tape dispensing device. Smash tape (and other similar products) are super easy to use and add a decorative flare to items you may not want to permanently glue down. It does not tear paper and is reposition-able if you decide to move it around. It’s overall pretty darn awesome!!!

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I used the “wedding” themed book to create a way to store our wedding and shower invitations and momentos as well as keep a log of our anniversary celebrations over the years, special date nights, etc. I used several pockets to store pamphlets, postcards, hotel keys, and other assorted goodies I’ve collected over the years. I even had random Instagram photos printed to remember dates and venues. I love that on our 30th anniversary some day, I can look back and remember that we spent our second anniversary at the Mansion on Turtle Creek in Dallas and have the handwritten card the manager left in our room to prove it!

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This is just a tiny glimpse of the many memories, thoughts, and souvenirs I store in my Smash books. What will you smash into yours?

You can get your smash book in 3 different sizes at Hobby Lobby, Michael’s, Target, or Amazon.com if you’re an online shopper. In fact, if you’re in the market for one this week, I happened to notice that the books and lots of accessories are being featured on the discount site Zulily through Friday so go have a look!

http://www.zulily.com/e/k-and-company-smash-58074.html?pos=74

Happy smashing!

ABCmouse.com

School started for P last week but T still had 1 more week before her preschool program begins. P attends a classical school where she goes to a traditional classroom two days per week, is homeschooled two days, and has electives on the final day. We love her school and the format really works well for our family. I enjoy getting to share the teaching responsibilities with her school teacher and we love the flexibility we have with the school schedule.

Anyway, on home days, T is always dying to do “homework” too. I’ve stocked up on preschool and kinder workbooks in attempts to give her a jump start at Kindergarten next year and she’s super smart if I do say so myself! This year P’s school has decided to implement some learning through technology and P now has some assignments that she can do in the form of a game online or iPad app. Naturally whatever big Sissy is doing, little Sissy wants to do. We had seen the commercials for abcmouse.com on tv so we decided to give it a go. I’m so glad we did because she loves it and I love knowing the programming is age appropriate and educational.

Each child can select an avatar to represent them and a teacher to guide them. The classroom is bright and easy to navigate and there’s a town map where children can visit a theatre that shows alphabet videos, a pet store, and other shops.
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They even have class pets they can feed and care for. A hamster and an aquarium. Children can earn tickets for completing lessons to purchase additional pets and accessories.
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They can choose to free play various themed educational games or follow their assigned “learning path”. Each game or lesson in their learning path awards hem with tickets to use for prizes or to purchase clothing and accessories for their avatar and classroom.
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The learning path changes environments after you complete all the lessons of one section
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I asked T to tell me which game was the one she enjoyed the most so I could give you an example but she said she has 2 favorites so I’ll show you both! Hamster ball bowling- the object of the game is to knock down all the pins by selecting the 2 hamster balls with numbers that will add up to 10

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She also loves Sea Horse racing. The object of this game is to select the correct shape as quickly as possible to give the seahorse a boost to win the race

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On top of all the fun games and other obvious educational assets, the games also teach alot about general computer usage for beginners.

Try it free for the first month and then it’s only $7.95. That’s a steal in my book for the hours of educational entertainment for a busy body 4 year old!
www.abcmouse.com
My studious little cutie pie

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Shopping Cart Dash

The girls and I love to play games together so I’m always looking for unique games that will spark their interest. A couple of their favorites have been The tea party game and the Cupcake game so when I stumbled upon Shopping Cart Dash last week, I knew we needed to try it! We cracked open the box tonight for the first time after I put the little troublemaker down for the night. The girls both loved it! Here is our review:

Shopping Cart Dash

A fun with Chimp and learn with Zee game for 2-4 players ages 3+

The game comes with 12 puzzle-like track pieces that form a large square when assembled. It comes with 4 different colored shopping carts, “gold coins”, a supermarket “shelf”, 6 different shopping lists, and 36 “items” (groceries).

The object of the game is to move along the board collecting all of the items on your list based on the color you land on. You must pay for each item using one of your coins. The first to collect all of their items is the winner.

I’ll be honest, I was expecting this game to be more fun for T (4) and wasn’t expecting P (9) to get into it. I was wrong. They both loved it and I too enjoyed playing it with them. It is definitely aimed more towards the preschool crowd as everything is color coded and it is very simple but I think the cuteness factor of it really appealed to everyone equally. The little shopping carts actually have rolling wheels, the food items and grocery list have glittery details, the grocery shelf itself is pretty stinkin’ cute, and the lists had items like a soccer ball or candy added in the “treats” section.

The only con we found to the game was that the coins were sort of challenging to get out of the bottom of the grocery shelf once you were done with one game and wanting to start another round. I think the kids found that less annoying than I did! lol Overall, this was a great buy and we would highly recommend it!

The colors are bright, the pieces are darling, and the object is simple. Would make a great addition to your game closet or classroom. The greatest part of all? It’s very inexpensive! $11.50 on Amazon.com

I will attach the link for Shopping Cart Dash as well as the Tea Party Game and Cupcake Game that have been a few of our go to games over the last couple of years.

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Love having fun with my girls!

20130831-231622.jpgYou can find Shopping Cart Dash here:

http://www.amazon.com/Chimp-Zee-Shopping-Cart-Dash/dp/B0038O2DOG/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1378009114&sr=8-1&keywords=shopping+cart+dash

You can find The Cupcake Game here:

You can find The Tea Party Game here: