Make a Vacation Movie

Make a fun movie with the kids on summer vacation to capture all the adventure! #StreamTeam #ad #NetflixWe are currently on summer vacation with these crazy kids. My parents and sister and her kids have all met up in the mountains to hang out for the week. Of course we have taken tons of photos but then we found an even better way to capture all the adventures for the week. We made a movie!

*This post is in partnership with Netflix. As a #StreamTeam member I share cool posts with you every month based on new shows or themes. This month we’re excited about the new Netflix series Dragons: Race to the Edge based on the How to Train Your Dragon movies. Netflix sent over a fun viewing kit that we took along with us on our vacation.

The first day here, my oldest son asked me to help him make a movie. We used iMovie (the coolest app, $5) on my husband’s phone and it couldn’t have been easier. The movie (well, really a movie trailer – but you can totally make a full movie if you have the time and energy) included his cousins and was about superheroes. And then I realized that we could include our beautiful surroundings, family and our new fun Dragons toys to create a vacation keepsake that will have us smiling long after we return home. And now, for your viewing pleasure…

Did you catch the cameo by me and my husband? The app is super easy to use. You pick the template of the type of movie you want to make and shoot videos accordingly. The music and titles are all done for you (minus whatever editing you want to make to the words) and making a movie trailer takes about 20 minutes. SO fun! We even made a movie with some other campers we met last night! When the trailer is complete, you can email it to whoever wants it. Grandparents love this kind of stuff! I can only imagine how many other movies we’ll make of our mountain adventures before we leave!

Looking for some adventure closer to home? Check out Dragons: Race to the Edge! And don’t miss other Netflix favorites, How to Train Your Dragon 2, National Treasure, Planet Earth, and new episodes of Marvel’s Hulk and Agents of S.M.A.S.H. season 2 (starting 7/28) and Turbo FAST (starting 7/31) begin soon!

Thank you for supporting brands, like Netflix, that allow me to share fun family activities with you! This is not sponsored in any way by iMovie, we are an Apple family that thinks you’ll love this app too!


There’s No Place Like Home – Especially these

sugar and cloth living room
Image via Sugar and Cloth

It is time.  We’ve been in our place or almost a year.  It is still undecorated and it is freaking me out.  I think part of the problem is that I a worried about how the compromising will go with my husband.  We both have very distinct tastes.  And since this is my place of business (blog aside, as a stay at home mom – this is my office) I am the one that will be enjoying it or not enjoying which ever the case may be.  I’m starting to make sure I note when I am really drawn to an interior that I see online.  I’m going to ask the hubs to do the same.  And we’ll see what we come up with!  Will this be a project that will be done soon?  Nope.  We don’t have the time or money for that.  But this is all about developing our style and finding the pieces that feel like us.

Ashley‘s living room drives me wild.  I love her art work (I think she made most of it herself) and the clean lines are comforting.  That rug wouldn’t last a second in our house though with two little boys.  So I’m wondering what options are out there that will help keep a room bright but hide dirt.

furbish studio designed home
Image via Marie Cox via Glitter Guide

I’m addicted to pretty much anything that Jamie from Furbish Studio does.  Every time I come across one of her interiors it stops me in my tracks.  It fits me perfectly.  I adore her mix of colors and patterns.  There is always something playful that goes well with my sense of humor.  And the spaces feel homey and not over-styled.  How will I be able to pull off this layered look without a ton of knickknacks?  I know myself and how much I do not enjoy dusting around tiny items.

great color and feel for growing kid's room
Photo via Mor Til Mernee

I love how this wall of art doesn’t feel like a typical gallery wall.  Maybe it is the pops of bright colors coupled with the sleek storage.  I’m going to be studying this to see how I can mimic it.

A few other issues:

Do we finally give up our ridiculously comfortable couch for a style better suited for our eyes?  Our eyes don’t have to lounge on it to watch TV at night.

Do we go with a console table, bench or buffet for the wall where we will hang a lot of our framed art?  I hate that our couch provides our only seating in the room when we have guests over.  Everyone sits facing the TV and the window and interaction is odd.  I could totally use the storage space of a buffet but could we address the seating issue by adding a bench against that wall that could be moved when we entertain?  Or would it end up looking like a bench pushed against the wall?

What do we put under our TV?  It needs to store a shit load of Skylanders, DVDs and hopefully the DVR and DVD player (yes we still have one of those.  I am not sure why).  Most media consoles seem to be either super modern and stark or super country and grody.  Will we find one that lands somewhere in between?

Will my husband be able to handle the pops of pink that I think is integral to any perfect room?  I like a little bit of neon pink here and there.  Is that so wrong?

Will my kids ruin all our new stuff?  To be determined.

Kidstock 2013 Fundraiser in Beverly Hills

*I was invited to Kidstock, a private fundraising event to share the experience with you.  All opinions are my own.

walking in laA few weekends ago I was invited to a really cool fundraising event in Beverly Hills called Kidstock.  Held at Greystone Mansion, this annual interactive arts and music festival is a ridiculously fun family event.  Sponsored by Hudson Jeans, this event raises money for an organization called One Voice.  One Voice helps kids from inner cities prepare, attend and pay for college, as well as other holiday and emergency programs for deserving inner city families.  What I love about the scholarship program is that they don’t just get the kids in school and then leave them to fend for themselves.  The group supports the students all the way through graduation.

So I brought along my oldest son (who has been begging me to take him to LA – he hears about it from me and his dad) and carpooled up with one of O’s favorite friends (and daughter of the fabulous Nicole).

kidstock at greystone mansionThe kids were beyond excited.  They had no idea what to expect but I knew they were going to have tons of opportunities to make amazing memories.  I had seen a list of the sponsors and was blown away at what was going to be available.

kidstock at greystone mansion beverly hillsOf course we had to start the day off at the step and repeat.  I think at this point my son knew he was in for a lot of photos…I have a bittersweet love affair with Hudson Jeans.  About 5 years ago, I changed my eating habits and found myself at a size 6, a size I hadn’t been since high school.  I bought the most adorable pair of Hudson jeans.  Before I could take them to get hemmed, I found out I was pregnant with my second son.  Those jeans sat in my closet for years hoping, one day, that I would finally get to wear them.  But I have finally come to terms with the fact that I really enjoy food.  And those size 6 Hudson jeans had to be let go of.  They are on a farm upstate…

One of the ways they raise money at this event is the purchase of kid’s jeans and t-shirts by Hudson.  They were awesome!!  I’m totally kicking myself for not buying any jeans.  Especially since my son asked me for a pair.  And he is VERY picky about his clothes.  Plus they had a bunch of cool patches you could choose to customize your pants or shirt.

Sprinkles Cupcakes were on hand and let kid’s decorate their own treats.  Shwings also had a fun DIY customization station set up.  So.  Much.  Fun.  Stuff.

radio disney photo booth at kidstockRadio Disney had a photo booth area set up which of course we had to try out.

roger berman and son at kidstock 2013As we started walking away from the booth, look who popped up behind us.  Rodg and Sky Sky.  Maj!  (He was super gracious when I asked if I could take his photo.  His wife is my fave but, sadly, she was not there).

celebrity sighting at kidstock 2103We ran in to some of our favorite artists at Kidstock.  Dallas Clayton is awesome.  And O got to meet him.  He had a booth where kids could color some of his illustrations.  O got to meet Stephanie Scott, star of Disney Channel’s A.N.T. Farm.  Could she be any cuter!  And I loved getting a quick second with Peter Kim, CEO of Hudson Jeans.  Click on his name and watch the whole video.  I love what Peter has to say about his branding and company culture.  I pretty much only want to wear Hudson from here on out.  So inspiring.  He was so gracious and genuinely excited about the event.  LOVE that!

ziggy marley at kidstockAnd I was SUPER excited about seeing Ziggy Marley with his family.  While I tried to not approach the celebs and let them spend some time with their families, I had to get a picture with Ziggy.  And share a story with him.  Ziggy was the first concert I went to.  But I was only a sophomore in high school and the concert was in Los Angeles (I’m from Orange County).  So my mom took me.  The concert was at the Greek Theater up in the hills.  I remember that we left early because I had a migraine.  But I also remember that my mom went up to one of the security guards and made sure he knew that people were smoking pot around us.  The guard just looked at her like she was crazy.  EVERYONE was smoking pot around us.  I might have been a bit mortified.  I told Ziggy that story and he got a good laugh out of it.  I called my mom on the way home from Kidstock to tell her I had a picture with him and reminded her of that story.  She said she told the guard because the smoke was giving me a headache.  I laughed and told her it probably would have helped the headache.

kiwi crate at kidstockThere were activity booths set up all over the grounds of the estate to keep the kids engaged.  I was super happy to see Kiwi Crate was there.  My son made a drum in their booth.  See that arm around the little girl’s shoulder?  Totally a celebrity.  Seriously, can’t I just take a photo of my kid without a celebrity being in my shot?  Just kidding.

joanns craft booths at kidstockJoann had multiple booths set up with awesome crafts.  I was really impressed with the thought that went in to each booth.  Most of the activities were music or art themed and really made the event.  The materials were super high quality and while the crafts were pretty intricate, they were not too hard for the kids to do with a bit of supervision.

make your own soda with sodastream at kidstockMy son’s favorite booth was the SodaStream booth.  My son does not get to drink soda very often.  But I loved it too.  There were tons of different flavors to choose from.  I chose a delicious lime flavor that was not overly sweet.  And my son favored the Kool Aid Cherry flavored soda.  He BEGGED me to get a SodaStream after this.  And I considered it.  How awesome would this be to have at a party?!

custom converse airbrushing at kidstock sponsored by dswDSW sponsored this rad Converse airbrushing booth.  For a small fee, you purchased white Converse sneakers and then picked what you wanted painted on there.  Artists from A.M Style Entertainment then painted the shoes.  We were able to watch O’s shoes getting painted.  SO COOL!!!!!

blue and black custom airbrush converseI totally should have gotten a pair for myself!

live music on the radio disney stage at kidstockI was really excited for O to have a chance to see some live music.  While his father and I have talked about taking him with us to shows, I’m afraid it might make him prematurely deaf.  But I knew the music here would be perfect for the kids.  O got to see his fave, Stephanie Scott perform.  And later on in the day we watch this amazing family band called Rhythm Child.  How awesome to see young musicians putting on a really fun show.

o watching band and playing along at kidstockThe band encouraged the kids to jam with them and had percussion toys at the front of the stage.  O had a great time playing along.

andrea nicole and i at kidstockNicole and I had a great time with the kids but it was also super to run in to Andrea.  I stole this photo from her Instagram.

hudson jeans tshirt with red lightning bolt shwingsAnd though my younger son didn’t come with us, I did get him his own shirt and there was a pair of Shwings in the gift bag that he flipped for.

us weekly mention of final funds raised at kidstockThe  event was amazing.  I was grateful to be invited and be able to share that experience with my son.  It encompassed everything that we love and it was just plain fun.  I was delighted to see a mention in US Weekly.  So glad that Hudson Jeans and One Voice were able to raise a lot of money for a great cause.  The event staff should be so proud of what they have put together.

To find out more about One Voice, please visit their website.  And see more event photos here.

Land of Nod is coming to Orange County!

land of nod clip hook setAre you as excited as I am about the Grand Opening of the Land of Nod store at South Coast Plaza?!!  The store opens on Friday, May 31, 2013 and is located in the Crystal Court section of the mall near the Crate and Barrel store.  Remember how I fell in love with them after Alt Summit?  I can’t wait to see all the items in person.  And it couldn’t be a better time considering we have only been in our new house a week.  I’m totally in the market for rad home decor.  Land of Nod will be holding giveaways all opening day and has free goodies for those who arrive early to shop.  Will I see you there?  Here are a few of the things that I will be checking out:

These wall clips pictured above, are awesome!  My kid’s create a lot of art work in school and these would be such an easy way to display it.  We are also talking about doing a gallery wall in our front room and these would be such a cool way to be able to change out a few pieces, from time to time, to keep things fresh.

ansel teak deskI am in need of a cool, simple desk for my bedroom.  I am a big fan of this teak desk.  It would fit perfectly where our existing desk sits but I probably would totally bring this out when we entertain…I love the wood and metal together.  It has great lines and I want it.  (I’m stopping just short of stomping my feet with my hands in fists…).  I’m excited to check out all of their other furniture as well!

bocce ball for kids from Land of NodThis kid’s indoor bocce ball set is such a great gift idea!  I love how bright the colors are.  My husband’s grand father was a great bocce player.  It would be cool for our kids to learn the game too.

doub unpluggedThe buyers for Land of Nod have impeccable taste.  Their eye for great graphic design is evident in everything from their bedding to their custom art prints to their curated selection of books.  This Doug Unplugged book is adorable and the perfect message for today’s kids.  Get off your devices and get outside.  My oldest son NEEDS this book!

orange robo throw pillowMy oldest son’s room is pretty small and I’m keeping his bedding really simple.  These robot pillows would be perfect for adding a little pizzaz.  And what kid doesn’t love a robot?

wow thats a big lamp greenCurrently, we do not have a light in our living room.  We get by with the light from the television and entry way light.  It is not ideal but until we find a light my husband and I can both agree upon, that will have to do.  I can’t wait to show him this green lamp!  It is such a fun pop of color and I love the industrial look of it.

Not in Orange County?  You can still shop the store online.  And don’t forget to follow them on Pinterest and Instagram.   This is one company that really knows how to work their social media.  I find their Pinterest and Instagram feeds SO inspiring!

I would love to hear your thoughts on the store after you visit!
This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and Land of Nod, but all my opinions are my own. #PMedia #NODinCA

Kid’s Art Pillows for Mother’s Day

custom pillow for mother's dayHey mom.  Hey Marie (mom in law).  So I’ve now just ruined Mother’s Day for you because these kid’s art pillows are your gifts.  I know you read my blog, but I really wanted to share how cute these turned out with my readers.  Happy Mother’s Day!

I love when my kid’s draw.  They come up with the greatest characters.  When my youngest son drew this guy, I knew I had to turn it in to fabric.  And since Mother’s Day was coming up, it made sense to make the fabric in to pillow covers.  If you have never made your own fabric before it is SO easy.  I used Spoonflower and all you have to do is scan in the image and then follow their prompts.  It can be pretty expensive but I think it is well worth it to be able to create one of a kind fabric (and a keepsake).  Your local craft store sells pillow forms that are pretty inexpensive and make it so you don’t have to stuff your pillow with batting.  Super easy.

kid's art pillowsOnce the fabric arrives, you just have to find someone awesome to sew up the pillow covers.  And also to take pictures of the pillows for you since you are still trying to find your plates in your moving box hell.  (Thank you, thank you, thank you, Lauren!)

Have you ever made your own fabric?

Cool Book for Kids: Make Magic! Do Good!

sharon's fave things

make magic do good by dallas claytonDallas Clayton makes the coolest books for kids.  We got Make Magic! Do Good! for my son’s birthday and we LOVE it!  If you aren’t familiar with Dallas’ work, you must browse his site.  He is this amazing character, living life to the fullest and encouraging kids to do the same.  His messages are super important for kid’s to hear yet not often found in kid’s literature.  The illustrations are colorful and whimsical and the words are touching, humorous and real.

great kids bookWhile his other books are written as one story around a theme, this book is done in poems.  We read to our kid’s every night at bed time and we read this book over about a week.  We read a few poems each night and some nights had to go back and reread our favorites.  This book is a great way to introduce kids to poetry but I got a lot out of reading them too.

Like this:

New Best Friend

“You’re my new best friend, I never met, you’re awesome, perfect swell.  We do everything together, and we get along so well.  You’re my new best friend I never met, and I love you more than you know.  You’re my new best friend, I never met, because I never said “Hello.”

Boom.  Right?!  Life lessons

And when you get the book be sure to read ‘Wake Up Your Brain,’ ‘Slumber,’ and ‘Big Time.’  And then be sure to read all the rest.

favorite kids bookFor each book, Dallas tours the United States and does readings and events.  He helps kids paint murals and embrace creativity and brings happiness to each stop.  I would love to attend a reading of his one day!  He’s a huge inspiration to me and in turn my kid’s.  It is very important to me that the end up working at something they love.  He is the true embodiment of that and such a great role model for living a colorful life rich with experience.  Seriously.  Go get this book.

See more of our love for Dallas’ books from my son’s 2nd birthday party.

You can see more of my favorite things each month over on The Trend Tribe.  See my picks for February here!