Introducing Caroline Abbott at American Girl Place

Last week Lily and I were invited to attend the launch party for the new American Girl Doll.

American Girl Place on 5th ave in New York City is an absolute magical place for little girls…especially Lily.

My mom bought Lily an American Girl Doll last Christmas and Lily has loved her REBECCA doll. Dressing her up and taking her out to all important outings.

So on a brisk November evening we headed over to 5th ave to celebrate  American Girl’s newest historical character, Caroline Abbott, to learn  about her home in Sackets Harbor, NY, and its role in the War of 1812.

The evening included crafts, a scavenger hunt and a special dinner at the American Girl Cafe.

There were also actors dressed in period costumes roaming around the space to add to the mood.

Sackets Harbor Battlefield State Historic Site located in the Thousand Islands region of New York is a popular destination featuring re-enactors, exhibits, interpretive signs, and guided and self-guided tours and it is also included in Governor Cuomo’s “Path Through History,” a statewide roadmap that ties historically and culturally significant sites, locations and events throughout the Empire State.

After our crafting and scavenger hunt, we headed to the famed American Girl Cafe for a formal dinner. Lily has always wanted to do this and it was on our list of things to do this holiday season so she was OVER THE MOON about dining at the American Girl Cafe.

Upon entering the cafe, we were greeted by a friendly hostess who asked Lily, “How many dolls do you have joining you this evening?” to which she delightfully answered , ” One- Rebecca”.

The Hostess seated us and the doll in the center of the room.

Soon, we had a platter of cinnamon buns come out, followed by pink lemonade (don’t worry there are adult beverages available for the grown ups), then a platter of cheese, fruit and veggies and main course.  After  all this the yummy dessert plate arrived.. much to Lily’s delight… 3 types of dessert, cake, fruit and chocolate mousse.

American Girl certainly knows how to host a magical dinner.

If your little one forgets to bring a doll to the cafe.. no worries.. you can simply borrow a doll. Lily found a whole gang of pals to dine with her.

We had a great time at the American Girl Place and I feel so fortunate to have experienced this with Lily. She gushed about the event for days afterward.

You can find Caroline Abbott, at all American Girl Stores.

* I was not paid for this post. Simply attended the media event and loved it*

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Kidzvuz – Fashion + Tweens!

So Lily my  7 Year Old wonder is a ….*gulp*… tween!

Yes folks… tweens are now 7 -12 year olds… according to marketing and all things social standards.

As much as I want to run and hide her away in the tallest tower… there really is no denying it. Just accept the fact and parent on!

In the last year Lily has been dressing herself with her own sense of – I must say- AMAZING fashion sense. She is very particular about her hair and accessorizes channeling Madonna in the 80’s . Piles it on!

Yes she is still a jungle girl and I love that but her fashion girl comes out once in a while as well.

This summer she decided that “girl” bathing suits were for suckas and switched over to board shorts and sun shirts… something I hope she keeps until she’s 30! (fingers crossed)

So tween years here we come.

My friends Rebecca Levy and Nancy Friedman – founders of online kid destination KIDZVUZ– hosted a fab event last weekend geared for… tween girls.

At first I was a bit cautious, Lily does go to many blog/media events with me but none are beauty, fashion driven and none have ever been beauty fashion driven toward her age group.

The KIDZVUZ event was great… it was the right amount of everything for girls her age- tweens.

A little bit of glam a bit of art some tech… and jelly beans!

There was a hair corner hosted by Fashion Angels where the girls were getting their hair done, Lily had her hair streaked.

One of her favorite activities of the event was dressing up the mannequins provided by Children’s Place.

This was something she had ALWAYS wanted to do. When we go shopping she always wonders who dresses the mannequins and her she was… dressing her very own! Very chic I must say!

She also LOOVED getting glitter tats from Glitter Tattoo NY. My fashion girl picked an iconic motor chick tat. and I love her for it! There were a ton of fairies and butterflies and flowers and frilly things and she went all out. Go big or go glitter home is what I say! 

Lily loved the whimsical pillows from iScream She was also encouraged to pick out an activity book – that she loves- sticker, a pen and some other nick nacks!

But fashion and glitz was not all this event was about. Kidzvuz was also working with K.I.D.S to raise funds for those affected by Super Storm Sandy.

There were also reps from Microsoft showing off the new Surface Tablet. I didn’t get a chance to chat with them too much but as certainly curious to find out more about this new gadget.

When we checked into the event, Lily was given an arm band which she thought was great because I didn’t get one. And upon leaving she was gifted with a whole great big bag of goodies JUST for her… again something I did not get and that made her happy. Truly an event for the girls.

Overall the event was right on the mark for Lily’s age. All the vendors there were very respectful of the girls ages and did not push any sort of “you can look great if you try..” lingo and I thought the KIDZVUZ team did a stellar job in curating the right products and people for the event.

So here we go folks… TWEEN years!

*I was not paid for this post. Lily was given a bag full of tweentastic goodies*

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Must-Have Book for Fashion Girls and Mama Bears – Holiday Gift 2012

Look what i found. A MUST HAVE gift for that special fashionista in your life.

Sometimes mommy life can be a bit… dare I say… dull… tedious… uninspiring… repetitive… but fully awesome yes… yet sometimes feeling less than fab is the name of the game… right mama bears?

So this one is for YOU… ok for ME… but maybe for YOU too.

In our constant quest to raise perfectly mannered littles, how about a whole lot of politically incorrect humor to jazz up your daily routine.

Some familiar, some not so familiar nursery rhymes for the trapped fashion mama to add some kick to your daily baby grind.

“This Little Piggy Went To Prada” Hardback $19.99 www.neimanmarcus.com

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40 Weeks…Where is Le Bebe?

Today is my due date.

And no bebe yet. I am anxious, excited and scared silly to meet this little guy who has been kicking me in the ribs for the last few weeks!

My internal ‘know all’ says it’s not time yet.

Jonah is in the hospital and wont be back home until today or tomorrow, crazy snow conditions in New York today and all of a sudden we have a MOTH issue in the house that we are frantically trying to take care of.

I spent the day yesterday, getting some marketing work done for my clients, and fixed up the nursery… except for some wall art… it’s ready to go!

Today I don’t feel so great. Feeling really large and wobbly and moving around the house is a bit tough, my emotions are kinda all over and I just want to lay on the couch and watch re-runs of the housewives. ( my guilty pleasure so what!)

Friday I had a Doctors’ appointment and he said… “any day now.”  Which is also what he said 2 weeks ago!

He said I could go home that night and BAM… baby time. But nada. The babe is about 6.5 – 7 pounds and from what I feel going on in my innards… he’s got a mean left kick! My left side is bruised up from him practicing his soccer skillz in the bellie.

I’m fine with the baby not being here yet. We are all worried about our Jonah Bear and need him to come home before starting off on a new adventure with the babe.

Never a dull moment in these parts folks… and it’s exactly how I love it.

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Holiday Gift List 2012 – 4 unique toys for kids

This year I’m hoping to share a handful of holiday gift lists… here’s the first.

Since Lily is my point of reference, all these are toys she likes, has or is wishing for.

My 4 picks for ages 6 – 10. 

Wings for your shoes.. so cool!
Schwings www.amazon.com $13.98
For that budding fashion girl.
Sew Fun www.alextoys.com $83.95
Modern Dollhouse for the modern kid.
Dylan House with Furniture
www.brincadada.com $169
A whole family of nesting dolls.
Chalkboard Matryoshka www.landofnod.com $14.95

* I was not paid for this post. Sharing some info from all the events I have attended this year and all the goodies that show up for review at my home. All opinions are my own and these have been handpicked by Lily and I *

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Pet Emergency – This could happen to you

This wont happen to me.

This seems to be my “base line philosophy” for most serious things. – earthquakes, fire, accidents, sickness, storm damage… and until recently…Doggie emergency.

This past Saturday, Jonah gave us such a scare.

We started out the Saturday lounging and putting together a glider for the nursery and prepping things for the new baby. Lily was busy with her shenanigans… all was well in the land.

For the past few days, we had noticed that Jonah was not eating his food, so Lily hand fed him some food mixed with cheese and we didn’t think anything of it.

As the day went on we noticed a significant change in Jonah’s behavior, he became a bit lethargic, he would wince for no reason and the biggest “alarm” he was throwing up clear phlegm. At one point he threw up white foam… I had never seen him throw up white foam before and quickly researched this.

BLOAT!

Like the movie Marley and Me.. BLOAT!

Bloat is terrible for dog’s, it comes on suddenly and can be fatal.

Jonah has had the stomach surgery to prevent BLOAT, but it was to prevent the kind of bloat that twists the stomach. So what was this?

A few days earlier…

We spent a couple of days in Connecticut for Thanksgiving, Jonah had a pet sitter come by the house to take care of him. When we got back Friday night we noticed a pile of black stuff on the floor in the hallway upstairs.

It was some sort of chewed up sock that had been spit up. Except it was a WHOLE LOT OF chewed up sock. Jonah had chewed up one of Matt’s socks a few days earlier… something he had not done is years. We didn’t think much of this and let it go. Lately, Jonah…and Lily… have both been regressing into their baby behavior. The  new baby coming, our move this summer, all the excitement of change… both of them have been revisiting their baby habits… for Jonah it was eating Matt’s sock.

That night while folding laundry, I found a pair of my spandex leggings and they had been destroyed.. eaten throughout. About 70% of the leggings had been eaten. JONAH!

So on Saturday, when Jonah was acting strange… I immediately knew what could have caused this. While his stomach stapling surgery prevented the twisting of the stomach BLOAT, it does not do anything to prevent problems caused by crazy dogs eating leggings. Not socks, not underwear… leggings.

We called our vet, we called pet emergency rooms …all who said who … Take him in now… no time to lose.

Matt took him over to a doggie emergency hospital around 3:30pm on Saturday… they did x-ray’s and found that YES… there was an obstruction in his stomach. A surgeon was called in around 8pm and he went under and had his stomach operated on that night. Sure enough a HUGE chunk of black spandex leggings were removed from him stomach.

Jonah came out of the surgery just fine, he’s still at the hospital… IV in his leg, looking weak and sad but healthy and alive.

WE visited him yesterday and Lily was very happy to see him and give him sweet healing kisses which only she can give.

This could happen to you!

While eating socks seems harmless enough… losing your dog in the blink of an eye is not harmless… Jonah’s condition went from fine to emergency in a matter of hours… and if we had not seen the pieces of leggings he had spit up we would never have known the cause of his behavior.

Lily was pretty distraught over this whole situation. 4 years ago, our Newfoundland – Lincoln Duncan- went into the hospital on something that we thought was not a big deal and 11 days later he passed away. Lily never got to say goodbye and she thought this was going to happen again.

She’s been making cards and Christmas tree ornaments for Jonah all weekend.

Jonah comes home from the hospital on Tuesday or Wednesday… the baby in my belly can come out ANY TIME NOW! 

Never a dull moment around these parts!

So how do we prevent this behavior in the future? What if he does this again?

Take care of your pets everyone… even the simplest of “puppy behavior’ can be fatal to your four-legged family member.

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My week as seen through my iPhone

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Obsession with Antler Heads!

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Jonah taking care of me… he knows it’s go time up in heah! Baby on the way! 20121121-114150.jpg

Lilypie…. I need her to stop growing up so quickly! 20121121-114220.jpg

This is her “smile for Nana” smile. 20121121-114315.jpg

I work at TIME TO PLAY .. my desk on a regular day. Reviewing advent calendars and jewelry color changing kits and Elf on the shelf goodies. 20121121-114328.jpg

The big ole belly!!! With little toes peeking out!

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Movember

It’s MOVEMBER…. the month of November where men grow their facial hair to raise awareness for mens health.

My brother does this every year and this year Lily got in on the action.

Find out more about MOVEMBER here.

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Holiday Shopping Made Easy With Time To Play Mag

With all the buzz about sales and shopping and midnight.. ahem … 6pm on THANKSGIVING DAY (grunt) shopping, I felt I should share this with you!

I work with this fab company and every day that I go in is such a treat… from the people to the products to the job I have to do… it’s honestly such a pleasure and I feel lucky to be a part of this news in a small… small way.

Time to Play Mag is a site that does toy reviews… honest toy reviews by a handful of reviewers … like me who play with toys and test them out throughly and then give you the deets.

So now we have added a LIVE PRICE COMPARISION feature.

Next to the review of the toy you are interested in is a Price Comparison Chart for stores like Target, Walmart, Kmart, Amazon and ToyRUs. You can see if the toy is in stock and the price… and then purchase it online..in your PJ’s… while eating your turkey leg! SCORE! 

The site is updated every 6 hours… so no need to camp out overnight for that MUST HAVE toy this year.

Genius I say!

So go check it out NAO… and don’t keep this to yourself… spread the word! Tis the season of sharing after all!

Read more here—> Time To Play Mag

*I was not paid for this post. I do work for the company in my daily life and just LOOOVE this feature*

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Getting Pampered at Benefit Cosmetics

My dear friend Holly – The Culture Mom and MamaDrama – hosted an amazing event over the weekend at one of my favorite makeup boutiques – Benefit in SOHO.

I have been a HUGE fan of benetint – the wunder tint product that adds instant color to your cheeks and lips. Usually I can find this at a local Sephora and had never any reason to go into an actual Benefit store.

So here I was on a Saturday morning in SOHO, Lily and Matt headed over to see the preview of Rise of the Guardians in Times Square.

I was in for a treat. I had a makeover where the makeup artists told me about adding a bit of shimmer to my temples and bringing it down the side of my face and highlighting my cheekbones. Nice trick because these days the cheek bones are kinda hidden by preggy face puff.

I also had my moustache waxed by a fab gal who was from Georgia so we chatted about the panhandle and the beaches and the food while she cleaned up my hairy face. She also tinted my eyebrows… something I have never done before and didn’t really think I needed until I caught a glimpse of myself the NEXT day and was like, “oh hey girl hey… nice eyes” Who knew a little eyebrow tint could make such a difference!

Benefit uses natural dyes and natural products so my preggy self was safe from chemical harm.

Benefit stores also have waxing and spray tan services along with makeup consultations and applications. The wax that was used to “unhair” my face was really gentle and left NO bumps between my eye brows.. girls you know what I’m talking about right… that little red irritation… I didn’t have any of it.

As I left, I was gifted with a mascara and … BENETINT!! Which was great since I had run out.  So thanks Holly and MamaDrama and Benefit for my pampering Saturday.

*I was not paid for this post but was gifted some goodies from Benefit Cosmetics.  All opinions are my own.* 

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