Save 10% on your Party Supplies at Paper Mart

“This is a sponsored conversation from Savings.com. All opinions are my own.”

At Paper Mart, they have the largest selection of stock packaging products found under one roof and they are the leading discount packaging company. They’re also my go-to packaging supplies place because I love their beautiful collection of ribbons, gift boxes, and much more. Having four girls in the house we have our fair share of birthday parties to throw and attend. Wrapping a present is how I show my love… I want the presentation to be spot on. I’m so happy I found Paper Mart many moons ago, it has saved me literally an arm and a leg.

 

Having gift bags on hand makes life easier than trying to run out and find some in a pinch, although we throw lots of parties goodie bags is always the last thing iI remember. I love how Paper Mart has the Matte Patterened SOS Food Bags. These SOS food bags are printed on versatile white grocery style paper bags. They can be used for just about anything from holding baked goods to party favors and gifts. I buy them in sets of 50 for only $9.59 which is much better than any party store and I always have leftovers for the next party or teacher gift that comes up.

 

If you haven’t checked out the assortment of gift wraps please go take a look. They have literally everything but my favorite for birthday parties is Party Wrapping Paper and its available in a variety of sizes and styles. Choose from 15’ and 100’ rolls to larger 417’ and 833’ counter rolls.

 

 

You can’t wrap that present without a cute bow. Paper Mart has a wide selection of bows, ribbon and other products to wrap in style. I absolutely love the Sparkle Holographic Curling Ribbon. This sparkly curling ribbon features a holographic design on one side with a gleaming satin finish on the other. It has a smooth surface, which makes curling with scissors a breeze! This ribbon is great for creating stunning curls and cute bows for presents, tying balloons, and embellishing party decorations, crafts and much more!

 

 

 

 

You can not beat the prices and quality products from Paper Mart. Easy to navigate website, fabulous inventory, best prices and fast shipment. But the best part is the possibility of buying in smaller quantities. PaperMart, you make me happy MOM.

Get 10% off your first order at PaperMart! Expires 1/31/18.

 

Use code GET10

 

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Start a New Tradition with the Family Honor Plate

This sponsored conversation on The Family Honor Plate was written by me on behalf of Fly By Promotions, all opinions and text are my own.

 

The Family Honor Plate is a ceramic honor plate based on the Fruits of the Spirit found in the Bible under Galatians 5:22. To take those reminders a step further, the entire family can join in and create an honor plate. I chose to do this plate with 1 of my 4 children, as she struggles a lot with ADHD/ ODD. My daughter was so excited to paint this and learn more about the background of why. This plate represents who has made great choices, struggled with something and overcome. I especially love this plate because everyone can celebrate the child or person who has made great, loving choices that week.

The Family Honor plate comes with everything you need to create your own decorative plate.

 

Kendall started by ripping open the box, as she usually does with stuff that comes in the mail. She settled down more as I went thru and told her step by step what was needed to do to complete the plate. We wiped the plate down with alcohol to clean off any residue as instructed and began to set up.

 

 

Kendall and I talked thru the whole process of creating the Family Honor Plate about what it means to have self-control, showing kindness and being loving. Some of these things she really struggles with and the idea of this plate for her is wonderful. She needs recognition as we all do sometimes when we show great decision making.

 

 

Along with decorating the plate, we used the Table Thyme Discussion Cards and I. Communication is the key to building relationships and creating memories that last a lifetime! Having four daughters I need to know whats going on and make sure they are always open for conversation.

 

 

 

 

 

Table Thyme Discussion Cards

Enjoy more than a year’s worth of unique questions that will have your family sharing about everyday and unique topics, thoughts or memories that normally aren’t brought up or even thought about. Your family will learn how to articulate and share special memories, learn how to voice their opinion, and for some – how to even have an opinion. Every question is followed up with “Why?” to take your answer to a deeper level. That’s where the magic is. So now when asked…”What is your favorite dessert?” Rather than someone’s simple answer of “Apple Pie”, the whole family gets to walk down memory lane because of the answer to “Why?” is it reminds them of Grandma Smith who always made apple pies with them when they came to visit. Her house always smelled of fresh baked pies when you walked in the door. This opens up the unique memories of everyone in the family. Each member will get to enjoy a walk down memory lane with Grandma Smith. With this one simple question, the family has reached a new level of intimacy while bringing memories and the love for one another to life. And that was just one person’s favorite dessert. Wonder what the next person’s favorite dessert is and Why? Sharing, listening and genuine laughter cultivates connection and stronger relationships within your family. You may not remember what you made for dinner some of these nights, but there will be conversations that you will never forget.

 

 

 

How do you celebrate when your child makes great choices?

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Get creative with Sweetlings

This sponsored conversation on Sweetlings was written by me on behalf of Alex Brands. I was also sent the Sweetlings to use for this post, all opinions and text are my own.

 

 

As a parent, I’m always looking for toys that inspire creativity in my girls. I want my kids to do more than sit in front of the TV – I want them to do activities that engage the mind. When I saw Sweetlings, I knew it was the perfect toy for my children.

 

 

Sweetlings are cute characters that your kid’s design using whipped clay and accessories. There are different characters to choose from and each character is made to resemble a sweet treat. For my girls, I chose RAINBOW SPRINKlING, which resembles a donut. The kit includes everything needed to make the character. You get the whipped clay, plastic sprinkles, glitter, stickers, arms, a decorative background, and more. You also get tweezers and instructions. You can also purchase additional accessories.

 

 

What makes this such a great toy is how much creativity it allows. While each Sweetling does come with instructions, you can let your children do their own thing to create the character the way they want to. Best of all, it’s something your kids can display and play with. It’s like making their own doll or action figure. Plus, Sweetlings are a whimsical toy that any child with a sweet tooth is sure to love.

 

 

 

 

Of course, the price tag doesn’t hurt either. Sweetlings can be purchased at Amazon, Toys-R-Us, and Target for only $9.99 for each character. This makes the toy super affordable and what parent doesn’t want to save money? If you have more than one child or want to buy more than one Sweetling, you can get the Sweetlings Sprinkle Shop for only $24.99 and create three characters. If this is the type of toy your children would absolutely love, you’ll definitely want to grab this deal.

 

 

 

Sweetlings are such a fun concept and sure to be a hit with children of all ages. If your children love to craft and play, you can’t go wrong with this toy. Click on the banner below to check out all of the Sweetlings and to watch some videos. You can also find out which retailers near you carry Sweetlings!

 

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Oriental Trading Spooky Halloween

THIS POST WAS SPONSORED BY ORIENTAL TRADING COMPANY. I RECEIVED PRODUCTS FROM THEM FOR MY HONEST OPINION.

 

When you work 12 hour days 7 days a week throwing a party for your kids becomes difficult. My plan was to throw a super spooky haunted house party for my girls but then I was deployed for a month and a half so all my planning kinda went out the window. So while I was gone serving the great state of Texas in #disasterrelief my box of fun came from Oriental Trading – I couldn’t wait to open it upon my return. I was able to throw a small party with the six of us because of time restraints.

 

 

Inside of my box came a spooky surprise. Paper Plates and matching cups, skulls, spooky candlesticks and more. We made Ghoul Juice and Pepperoni Spooky Pizzas and the girls thoroughly enjoyed themselves. Instead of me taking over the reigns and decorating I let them have fun and do it.

 

 

Oriental Trading is your one-stop shop this Halloween for fun toys, games, candy treats, crafts, party supplies and our Halloween costumes & accessories!

 

 

Oriental Trading has all your Halloween supplies from costumes to candy to decorations and freaky fun Halloween handouts if you prefer to stay away from the sweets. If spooky scary items are the way you go …. they have them too to make an awesome haunted house.

 

 

Trust me Oriental Trading is my go-to online shopping store for holidays and birthday parties they have EVERYTHING I need to make EVERYONE happy.

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5 Fun Ways to Make Back to School Special

 

 

 

 

It’s time to put the dog days of summer behind and get your kiddo’s prepared for going to back to school.

Vacations are coming to an end but I’m looking forward to getting things back to normal and having a routine again (Shhhhh….don’t tell the kids!).

The school year approaching can be tough for them; they’re faced with new teachers, new classes and maybe even a new school.  I try to make back to school a little easier for them by making the day a special one and giving them all the attention they can handle!

Here are a few of my favorite ways to make back to school even more special:

Shopping! It doesn’t matter whether you’re a boy or girl investing in a new backpack, shoes or new supplies can boost their confidence and relieve some of the anxiety of the day. If you don’t overdo it spoiling them all the other days of the year I promise it’s not going to ruin them. Splurge a little, they’re worth it.

What better way to close out the summer than with a back to school bash! Book the local pool or keep it cheap by having a meet-up at the lake. Invite old friends and new classmates and give the kids an opportunity to get to know each other before the school year begins. Your child will be the life of the party and you’ll get a chance to know the children and parents they’ll be spending their time with this year; I assure you this will come in handy.

Crawl out of a bed a few minutes early and whip up a special breakfast that includes a few of their homemade favorites. They’ll start their morning off surrounded my love and attention and set the tone for a great day back to school. Don’t get your feelings hurt if they’re not interested in eating much, their stomach is probably doing flip-flops.

No back to school day would be complete without the milestone photo.  The teens dread it but will appreciate it much later in life. The truth is if you didn’t take the photo they’d probably feel slighted in some way; all the other parents are doing it. You’ll want to capture these memories to fall back on. Step up your photo game and make it super fun with these Awesome Photo Ideas for the First Day of School 

Even the brooding teenagers are excited and anxious to share their day with you. The best thing you can do for them is to be there waiting for them. Life still happens on the first day of school so it may not be an option but if at all possible, be home to greet them. Have a snack waiting and be prepared to listen and give them your full attention and a great big hug! Back to school is a wonderful opportunity to let them know how proud you are and share in their excitement of the day.

Let the afternoon chores go and simply take in the moment. Before you know it they’ll be graduating with cap and gown and you’re going to miss every bit of them going back to school. Seize the moment, seize the day and come out on top as Best Mom on the Planet; you’ve got this!

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Awesome Photo Ideas for the First Day of School

 

 

Back to school has arrived once again and it’s time to capture that special moment, but if your kids are anything like mine, they’ll act completely annoyed and uncooperative for that first day of school photo while you’re desperately trying to make it happen.

How dare they! They can’t really expect that you’d miss this special day or that you’d be the only parent without a photo to share. You won’t be shamed on social media, no way, no how.

The best advice I can give you is to warn them, prepare them and most importantly make it fun. Skip doing what everyone else is doing and instead capture that first day of school moment in a fun, unique and creative way. You can start by checking out these awesome photo ideas perfect for the first day of school:

Becoming more popular this year, make a sign for them to hold. Chalkboards work great for this. While everyone else is noting their grade or today’s date take it up a notch by letting your kiddo choose a quote they like, even if it’s snarky it’ll be fun. Get your kiddo on board by letting them create their chalkboard masterpiece.

One of my favorite ideas is letting them hold up last year’s first day of school pic. It’s cute, fun and an easy way for everyone to see how much they’ve changed in a year’s time. They, too, will be surprised to see the side by side. It’s amazing how fast these kids grow up. Check out 5 Fun Ways to Make Back to School Special for some fun before the dreaded day ( depends on who you’re talking to ).

Props are always a good call. Nice props for back to school photos include books, globes, apples or even a library scene. If your child is into sports, clubs or other extracurricular activities choose props they can relate to. Include multiple items in the photo that tells a story about who your child is. Your baby is growing up; I promise you’ll want these memories to fall back on.

Have them strike a pose with mom and dad, their siblings or bestie; something that can be recreated year over year will be special, memorable and a whole lot of fun later on. You might have to nudge them, maybe even demand it but it’ll be worth all the trouble. And if all they do is pout you’ll have something to torture them with later on in life.

The school years will fly by and before you know it they’re off to college, having kids of their own and you’re taking trips down memory lane. Take the time to capture those moments, take the dang photo!

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Back to School M&M Energy Bites

Back to school is almost as exhausting as summer break is. Clothes shopping, hair cuts, school supplies, all the wants needs and demands of four little girls. I need some quick energy in my life. Here is a great recipe for easy M&M Energy Bites for both mom, dad, and the kids that will give you some quick energy to get your day going.

You probably have all the ingredients in your cupboard now for this delicious snack.

INGREDIENTS:

1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup M&Ms
1/3 cup honey
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS:

Stir all ingredients together in a medium bowl until thoroughly mixed.

Cover and chill in the refrigerator for at least half an hour.
Once chilled, roll into balls.
Store in an airtight container and keep refrigerated for up to 1 week.
Makes about 20-25 balls.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Strong Moms Raising Strong Kids

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This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Hefty® Ultra Strong™ trash bags.

 

 

Let’s face it. As moms, we have all experienced those days where nothing seemed to go right. However, we managed to keep things together and be strong for our families. A good mom knows how to stay cool under pressure – just like Hefty® Ultra Strong™ trash bags can withstand whatever you throw at them.

The new Hefty® commercial featuring John Cena and his real-life mom Carol, show that moms know a thing or two about ultra-strength and ultra-savings. Remember, it’s what our kids see that they’ll remember, not what we tell them and this commercial certainly makes that point.

We are getting back to school ready and with that comes getting rid of the old and coming in with the new. My children accumulate so many toys, books and junk over the year and before school starts, I like to make a clean sweep so we are organized and ready to be on our A+++ game (literally) for the upcoming school year.

 

 

 

 

My girls love to hit the yard sales with me in the summer so they have filled up their toy-box with books and toys they don’t play with. Every year we go thru it all and donate what is still salvageable and keep what they still play with. It’s a little bit of a struggle but it’s also a great lesson learned that even preschoolers are old enough to learn about generosity, compassion, and the importance of helping others. Donating their old toys is a great way to begin that lesson.

 

 

 

Hefty® Ultra Strong™ trash bags are a go-to staple for many moms because they not only hold up to whatever you put into them, but they neutralize odors thanks to the ARM & HAMMER™ patented odor neutralizer.  They also come in a variety of wonderful scents including Clean Burst™, Tropical Paradise™, Lavender & Sweet Vanilla™, White Pine Breeze™, Crisp Orchard Apple™, Citrus Twist™, and Pomegranate Mist™. There’s even a scent-free version for those that prefer it. Something that moms will really love is that the bags grip the side of the trash can to prevent the bags from falling inside the can. Best of all, if you have any problems with the bags, Hefty® offers a 100% money-back guarantee.

If you’re looking for a trash bag as strong as you are, the Hefty® Ultra Strong™ trash bags are sure to become your favorite trash bags.

Also, check out the new commercial featuring John Cena and his mom, Carol.


 

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Hefty® Ultra Strong™ trash bags.

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Talking to Kids about Sex

 

 

The JOY of Parenthood…. It comes with great conversations with your little ones. NOT….. but if someone has to do it I’d rather it be me. My 7 and 9-year-old brought up the word SEX the other day and I pretended like i didn’t hear them. Yea I’m that mom. What the heck… why are kids learning about this stuff so early? Kid come on now be a kid don’t grow up so fast.

 

I didn’t wanna have that talk when I was a pre-teen, I never asked about it. I do remember one of my father’s girlfriends having a talk with me while I sat on a bar stool in a bar in Southern Maryland about the Birds & the Bee’s I was about 12. It was uncomfortable, to say the least, I may have wondered about it I suppose but nowadays kids are starting out so early.

 

So the question is when is the right time to talk to your child about SEX?

 

When your child is ready.

 

Since my daughters have already asked about their private parts around age 4 I’ve opted to give them the correct name from the start instead of backtracking later. When my daughter came home from school and said her kitty-cat …………. It was time to teach her that its called a Vagina and boys have a Penis ( no daddy doesn’t pee out of his hand. )

 

My girls have asked me several times where babies come from? Do you get them from kissing because if you do I’m never kissing a boy. I explained to them that when you are married a mommy and a daddy create a baby together.The basic understanding of intercourse. You can say, “Nature [or God] created male and female bodies to fit together like puzzle pieces. When the penis and the vagina fit together, sperm, like tadpoles, swim through the penis and up to the egg.” Explain what you think about sex and relationships. For instance: “Sex is one of the ways people show love for each other.

 

Many moms believe their children are not ready or mature enough to know anything about Sex at all but I assure you, they are hearing about it at school. Wouldnt you rather they hear the facts from you than hear twisted info from someone else.

If you talk about it from an early age it won’t be taboo as they get older & hopefully, they’ll be more willing to talk to you when the time comes. I honestly didn’t think about talking about rape. I know it’s important to discuss, but it didn’t cross my mind.  There are some scary statistics out there. 1 in 4 girls and 1 in 7 boys will be sexually abused by the age of 18. If you use the proper terms and teach them what to expect and to say no, then hopefully their chances of being victims decreases or if they do (God forbid) become a victim, they will feel better coming to you. We will teach abstinence, but also talk about using protection and living with consequences of actions. I wish I could be naive when it comes to this, but I can’t. This isn’t the world we grew up in.

 

Storybooks can help get across the concept of sex to your child or further explain what you’ve already discussed. Check your local library, set aside time to sit and read together, then offer to answer any questions. Don’t just send your child off to read in a room by herself, though. Being involved from the get-go will show her that she can come to you when she has more complicated or sensitive questions as she gets older.

 

A few books I like that helped me thru the process are It’s Not the Stork and What’s the Big Secret

 

Do you have any tips on talking to your kids about sex? Let’s talk about it.

 

 

Jessica Marinaccio is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com
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5 Road Trip Games for Your Kids to Play

Taking your kiddos on a road trip can be a really crazy experience. I mean they are impatient, they get bored, and they begin to bug you with the “How much longer?” And “Are we there yet?” questions! We all know how frustrating that can be to answer those questions over and over. The best solution to make for a fun, calm, and enjoyable road trip is to keep those kids busy and having fun! If they’re having fun, they won’t be so worried about the timing and they will actually have a good ride. So, it can get pretty messy to bring along a bunch of toys to play with and it’s pretty much impossible to play a board game in a moving vehicle, but don’t worry! I have the solution! I’m going to be sharing with you 5 easy and fun games to play with your kids in the car that require absolutely no tools, just your brains and you talking to one another! So let’s jump right into the fun!!

1. I Spy: I Spy is always a fun game for kids because they get to be little detectives and find things that they may not have thought to look for already. So although it can be a bit difficult to play this game with objects on the outside of your vehicle because well, you’re constantly moving, you can play with the things inside your vehicle! This is where it pays off to have a ton of stuff in your car because this game could go on forever!
2. Alphabet Game: Another really fun game that requires looking for things! Here are the rules of the game, you have to find a word somewhere, whether that be inside the vehicle or on the outside, that begins with each letter of the alphabet. Whoever gets all the way through the whole alphabet wins the game, really simple but definitely takes a good amount of time!
3. Name That Tune: This is a good one that only requires the radio! Turn it on and hold a competition to see who can guess the song that is playing the quickest! This is super fun and a great way to hold a little friendly competition!
4. Guess the Celebrity: This one is super fun if your are ones that follow the celebrity world! All you have to do to play is simply take turns describing a celebrity and whoever guesses who you are the quickest, gets a point!
5. Punch Buggy: This one may not be the best idea and the parents probably won’t suggest it, due to the punching part of the game! LOL Typically when this game is played, every time a person sees a buggy car, they have to punch the other person. However, that’s not very nice, to make it a more appropriate game  just have them simply say “punch buggy!” When they see one and track the points!
Next time you are taking a road trip with the kiddos, be sure to keep these in mind! I promise it will definitely make for a more exciting and enjoyable road trip because they will be having a blast and stay occupied during your long drive!
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