Cinnamon Dough Ornaments

cinnamon 3

Did you all ever make cinnamon dough ornaments as a kid? I’ve made this a few times with the boys. They are super easy, inexpensive and a great craft to do with your kids. I headed to my local dollar store where I got several containers of cinnamon, glue and applesauce. I also picked up a package of glitter glue so the boys could decorate the ornaments to look like cookies. I must disclose, even though all of the ingredients are edible you don’t want to eat it! But the smell of cinnamon is amazing and makes the house smell more like Christmas!

Here are the ingredients to make your ornaments!

Here are the ingredients to make your ornaments!

You’ll also want to grab some of your cookie cutters to make the shapes you want. I of course used my Mickey shaped cutter! As well as the Buzz Lightyear spaceship and Woody’s sheriffs badge. The boys wanted a candy cane also, so why the heck not, I used it too! The point is for them to get creative and have fun!

Here are the ingredients:

1 1/2 cups of cinnamon

1 cup of applesauce

2 Tablespoon of glue

Yep, that’s it! Now, all you do is combine the ingredients in a bowl. I just used my hands and it feels almost like cookie dough. Make sure you incorporate all of the ingredients well. Then on a piece of wax paper put the ball of dough on and with a rolling pin roll it out. When it’s as thick as you want it you can start cutting out the shapes! I made mine about an inch thick. Don’t forget to poke a hole in the upper center of the ornament so you can put a ribbon through it. I just used a toothpick and carefully made the hole bigger. But next time I’ll be sure to pick up a package of straws to poke the holes.

After they’re cut out lay them out on a cookie sheet. Previously I’ve just let them air dry for a few days. But this time I decided to put them in the oven to speed up the process. I preheated the oven to about 250 degrees and popped the cookie sheets in the oven for about an hour. Half way through I turned the ornaments so the back side could dry.

Then the next day I let the kids go wild decorating them! They had so much fun with the glitter pens and didn’t make too much of a mess. I put the ornaments back on the cookie sheets to dry overnight. I’m in process today of putting the ribbon I got at the dollar store in the ornaments so I can hang them on my tree!

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They will go perfect on my Disney tree! Did ya’ll think I’d have any other kind? :) I just love how these ornaments turned out! These will be great to pull out over the next few years as the boys grow older and remember how much fun we had making them! I’m getting closer to the back end of the boys excitement of Christmas time and the innocence so I am really treasuring this time of year. We even put up our tree a week early because Riley just couldn’t stand it any longer! Even our Elf On A Shelf has already come to our household! Jack must really love the tree because he’s already come back from the North Pole the other night and decided to hang out.

There's Jack! The boys did a great job decorating the tree!

There’s Jack! The boys did a great job decorating the tree!

I hope you guys have fun making your own cinnamon dough ornaments! I would love to see what your kids create! Do you make your own ornaments? Please share what you’ve made!

 

WDW Value Resort-All Star Music

I’m continuing on our WDW Resort journey here! We’ve already talked about All Star Movies and All Star Sports Resorts. I also let you know why it’s great to stay on site. As with all of the resorts each has their own laundry facilities and arcade games.

Today we will look more into the last of the All Star Resorts. All Star Music is a Value Resort but the great thing about it is the Family Rooms. Of course they have the standard size rooms much like the other All Star Resorts.

AllStarMoviesCAD

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But unlike the other 2 resorts All Star Music has converted some rooms into a Family Suite. The 520 square foot rooms are actually 2 rooms. The main room has a fold out couch that turns into a full size bed, an arm chair that turns into a twin size, and an ottoman that turns into a twin size. There is a tv, chest of drawers, phone and table in the room as well. There is a bathroom that adjoins too.

The other benefit to these rooms is the kitchenette. There’s a coffee maker, microwave, fridge and sink in the area. As well as utensils for meals and room to put your food. If you’re trying to have a budget trip this is great idea that you can bring your own food and have a place to store it and cook it. The Mousekeeping brings fresh plates and silverware as needed as well as an assortment of coffee and teas.

In the main bedroom is a queen size bed with a night table, tv, place to hang clothes and a bathroom. Yes, 2 bathrooms! Mom and Dad can get ready in their own bathroom while the kids are in the other! These rooms can accommodate 6 guests plus one child under 3.

asmusic fam

asmusic fam2

asmusic fam 3Now that you’re more familiar with the rooms let’s talk about the resort itself. There are 5 different themes; Calypso, Rock Inn, Jazz Inn, Country Fair, and Broadway Hotel. Much like the other Value Resorts, they have larger than life icons outside each of the buildings.

asm rockasm jazzasm calypsoasm country

Keep in mind that the family suites are in the Jazz Inn and Calypso buildings, standard rooms are throughout all 5 themes.

The pools are the Guitar and Grand Piano. The Guitar is the main pool located by the Calypso buildings and is home to the Three Caballeros and shaped just like you’d expect! This is the happening place with lots of fun activities.

asm guitar pool

The Grand Piano pool is the designated quiet pool and is located between the buildings of Rock Inn, Country Fair and Broadway. This is a great pool to go and relax after a long day in the parks.

asm piano pool

As with all of WDW resorts there are standard rooms and premium rooms. All of the rooms are the same it depends on the location of the room and views. For example, those with close proximity to Melody Hall and views of the great resort are considered Premium. Rooms farther away and a less desirable view (parking lot) are known as standard. But, there is a price difference between the rooms, of course Standard is the lease expensive of the two. If you’d like to see a map of the resort and where the buildings and pools are here you go!

asmusic map

There are certain times of the year that are considered Value Season, so if you’re looking at a budget trip with a Value Hotel here is a price list for 2015:

Date Range Rate Standard Room Preferred Room Family Suite
Jan 1-Jan 3 New Years $191 $208 $445
Jan 4-Jan 7 Value $96/$129 $118/$139 $240/$268
Jan 8-Jan 10 Marathon $131 $151 $296
Jan 11-Jan 15 Value $96/$129 $118/$139 $240/$268
Jan 16-Jan 18 MLK $131 $154 $305
Jan 19-Feb 11 Value $96/$129 $118/$139 $240/$268
Feb 12 Peak $153/$186 $171/$205 $354/$411
Feb 13-Feb 15 Presidents Weekend $188 $205 $411
Feb 16-Feb 21 Peak $153/$186 $171/$205 $354/$411
Feb 22-Mar 5 Regular $123/$156 $149/$181 $307/$344
Mar 6-Mar 28 Peak $153/$186 $171/$205 $354/$411
Mar 29-Apr 11 Easter $192 $210 $423
Apr 12-May 21 Regular $123/$156 $149/$181 $307/$344
May 22-May 24 Memorial Day $164 $190 $362
May 25-May 28 Regular $123/$156 $149/$181 $307/$344
May 29-Jul 2 Summer $150/$179 $168/$197 $345/$401
Jul 3-Jul 5 July 4th $188 $207 $421
Jul 6-Aug 15 Summer $150/$179 $168/$197 $345/$401
Aug 16-Sep 10 Value 2 $104/$127 $122/$145 $244/$285
Sep 11-Oct 8 Fall $111/$134 $129/$151 $253/$293
Oct 9-Oct 11 Columbus Day $140 $157 $322
Oct 12-Nov 5 Fall $111/$134 $129/$151 $253/$293
Nov 6-Nov 8 Veterans Day $139 $157 $302
Nov 9-Nov 20 Fall $111/$134 $129/$151 $253/$293
Nov 21-Nov 27 Thanksgiving $155 $179 $348
Nov 28-Dec 10 Fall $111/$134 $129/$151 $253/$293
Dec 11-Dec 17 Regular $123/$156 $149/$181 $307/$344
Dec 18-Dec 31 Holiday $199 $217 $443

So we’ve concluded the 3 All Star Value Resorts. Did you find one that is right for your family? Is one of them a family favorite of yours? We hope to maybe try out All Star Music with the family rooms soon!

 

BioSkin 15% off SALE!

The links in this post contain affiliate links and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link.

Are you all running around trying to get everything for Thanksgiving next week? I can’t believe it’s already here! It kind of caught me by surprise! It’s nice that when I run in the afternoons I can relax and then when I come back I’m reminded of all of the things I have to do! I don’t know about your neck of the woods but it’s starting to get chilly here in New Mexico! I’m so glad that I have long running pants and my BioSkin Compression sleeves to keep my legs warm! Who knew that the sleeves were great for my freezing legs as well as compression?

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If you’ve been wondering about these awesome sleeves then now is the time to take the plunge! BioSkin will be having a sale starting TODAY and ending December 1st! Just in time for Black Friday and holiday shopping! If you use the code RUSH-A you will receive 15% off your order! I really love my sleeves and I have noticed how much they help not just for my running but when I’m at work in the hospital and on my feet all day. I have had several people ask me about them and if they really work. Yes! They do! I wouldn’t tell ya’ll about something that I didn’t try myself. Even if you’re not a runner but are someone who is active or has an active job they can really help with those spider veins and swelling.

I know that BioSkin has so many products for any part of your body that you need more support. I have said it before but I love how their website shows you exactly how to use the product and how it will help. I’ve also had a few people asking me about the prices. These are well made with SkinLok™ and Bio Skin® material. Meaning your legs won’t get sweaty and they won’t slip off. Sometimes you really do get what you pay for, and in this instance I truly feel they are worth it.

Here is the website for you to order your BioSkin Compression Calf Sleeves, or anything else you feel you need! Remember to put in your promotion code RUSH-A to get 15% off your order until December 1st!

Have you tried their products yet? How did they work out for you?

Target + TOMS

The links in this post contain affiliate links and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link.

Target is probably one of my favorite stores. They have almost anything you need! How many of us go into a Target for one or two things and come out with a basket full? You know you’ve done that at least once! Target has everything from toiletries, bedding, toys, food, decor, electronics and so much more! They also usually have great deals for you too! Have you ever stopped to think how fortunate we are to be able to just go into a store and buy simple things needed like food and clothing?

TOMS women shoes

This holiday season Target has teamed up with TOMS for a great Get One Give One campaign. If you’re not familiar with TOMS Shoes and clothing they started out with every purchase of their shoes, the company donates a pair of shoes to those in need. They have given over 35 millions pairs of shoes to children all over the world so far! Target and TOMS have branched out to help more people in need.

TOMS blanket

It started November 16th that customers could purchase any TOMS item from Target and Target will give shoes, blankets or meals to those who desperately need them. For each TOMS item you buy Target will donate:

-One blanket via American Red cross and Canadian Red cross

-One week of meals via Feeding America and Food Banks Canada

-One pair of shoes via TOMS

During the holiday time when all of us are thankful for our family, home, food and clothing, we also remember there are many others not as fortunate. If you want to help those in need but are not sure how to do it and are already going to be purchasing TOMS for your family this a great opportunity! If you haven’t thought about buying their items but want to help, this is awesome! TOMS shoes are so cute and comfortable! I have never bought anything but shoes from them, but if their blankets, jewelry, and candles are as well made as the shoes you can’t go wrong!

TOMS bracelet

You can look here to see all of their products and decide what you would like to buy. It’s going to be a tough choice! But the great thing is, the more you buy the more they give! It’s a win/win really! Have you purchased a pair of TOMS shoes before? Do you love them as much as I do?

WDW Value Resort-All Star Sports

So we learned about All Star Movies Resort yesterday. Today we will talk about a sister resort, All Star Sports. In the All Star Movies post you can learn about what is considered a Value resort. I also have written about what the benefits of staying onsite are also!

photo courtesy of https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/resorts/all-star-sports-resort/ photo courtesy of https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/resorts/all-star-sports-resort//caption

 

All Star Sports also has 1,920 guest rooms that are 260 square feet, much like All Star Movies. Each room has either a king size bed or 2 double beds. The rooms have a tv, phone, alarm clock, small fridge, vanity/sink area and closet rack in the bathroom area. In the actual bathroom is of course a toilet and tub. Each room accommodates 4 guests plus a child under 3. Pack and plays are available upon request if available. They do have handicapped accessible rooms as well as elevators to upper floors. There are some connecting rooms if you would like to have more room for your family. The bedding and decorations are similar in each section as well.

AllStarMoviesCAD

aasp room

All Star Sports has 5 different themes; Surf’s Up, Touchdown, Center Court, Hoops Hotel, and Homerun Hotel. This resort is great for a sports fanatic! Larger than life icons in each theme really bring you into the magic.

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Of course sports fan knows after working hard you want to relax and unwind in the pool! At All Stars Sports you have 2 to choose from, Surboard Bay and the Grand Slam. In Surfboard Bay they have a kiddie pool for younger guests, as well as life jackets available complimentary at both pools. Life guards are at the pool for most of the day, ask for hours at check in. Usually around 10pm they leave and quiet hours begin. Also, towels are not provided at the pool, however you can either bring your own or the towels from your room.

assp surfgrand slam assp

If you are wondering about the other pools at the sister resorts, All Star Movies and All Star Music you are able to walk over and use them as well. Normally guests are only able to enjoy the pools at their own resort. Magic Bands are used to get into the gate to ensure the safety and security of the guests.

In the evening you can also enjoy Movies Under The Stars at Surfboard Bay pool. The schedule of movies can be found at the guest services area at check in. Grab a lounge chair or blanket and unwind after a long park day!

As with the other resorts, an arcade, jogging trail and play ground area are available for use also. As well as a laundry area that has washers and dryers for about $1 per load. If you didn’t pack laundry soap and softener for your trip you can purchase those too.

Check in is at 4pm, however if you get to the resort early the cast members will hold your belongings until your room is ready. Check out is at 11am and they will hold your luggage until your ready to depart.

Here is a map for you to see where each theme is located within the resort

all star sports map

As for prices, All Star Sports is a Value resort and has very reasonable rates. Keep in mind there is a Standard room rate, further away from amenities and not as great view. Preferred Rooms are closer to the pools and hall as well as better views. There will also be a price difference during holidays and busy season. These prices are rack room rates, meaning without discount. Disney does sometimes offer discounts, usually 15% for Value.

Date Range Rate Standard Room Preferred Room
Jan 1-Jan 3 New Years $191 $208
Jan 4-Jan 7 Value $96/$129 $118/$136
Jan 8-Jan 10 Marathon $131 $156
Jan 11-Jan 15 Value $96/$129 $118/$136
Jan 16-Jan 18 MLK $131 $151
Jan 19-Feb 11 Value $96/$129 $118/$136
Feb 12 Peak $153/$186 $171/$205
Feb 13-Feb 15 Presidents Weekend $188 $205
Feb 16-Feb 21 Peak $153/$186 $171/$205
Feb 22-Mar 5 Regular $123/$156 $149/$177
Mar 6-Mar 28 Peak $153/$186 $171/$205
Mar 29-Apr 11 Easter $192 $210
Apr 12-May 21 Regular $123/$156 $149/$177
May 22-May 24 Memorial Day $164 $186
May 25-May 28 Regular $123/$156 $149/$177
May 29-Jul 2 Summer $150/$179 $168/$197
Jul 3-Jul 5 July 4th $188 $207
Jul 6-Aug 15 Summer $150/$179 $168/$197
Aug 16-Sep 10 Value 2 $104/$127 $122/$145
Sep 11-Oct 8 Fall $111/$134 $129/$151
Oct 9-Oct 11 Columbus Day $140 $157
Oct 12-Nov 5 Fall $111/$134 $129/$151
Nov 6-Nov 8 Veterans Day $139 $157
Nov 9-Nov 20 Fall $111/$134 $129/$151
Nov 21-Nov 27 Thanksgiving $155 $179
Nov 28-Dec 10 Fall $111/$134 $129/$151
Dec 11-Dec 17 Regular $123/$156 $149/$177
Dec 18-Dec 31 Holiday $199 $217

If your family loves sports and wants to get the most value out of their trip then this might be the resort for you! Have you stayed here before? I would love to know what you think about this resort! I haven’t had the pleasure to stay here yet!

 

 

WDW Value Resort-All Star Movies

There are so many resorts in Walt Disney Resort to choose from, it can be overwhelming to decide which one! Location, price and amenities can be a deciding factor in where you will stay! For the next few weeks or so I will have a series of blog posts dedicated to each resort. I will try to go into what makes each resort unique and helpful tips. If you are curious as to what special perks are available for on site guests you can read my past post about it here. Often even though it may seem more cost efficient to stay off site you still need to factor in cost to park, cost of gas to drive into parks, as well as time it takes away from being in Mickey’s house!

For Value Resorts they can be the most cost effective way to get the best of both worlds, not so expensive but still in the middle of the magic. So what makes a Value Resort, well, a Value Resort? Here is a list of what Disney constitutes for them to be considered Value:

-lack of hot tub and water slides in pool area

-lack of sit down restaurant, food court only

-farther away from the parks

-bus transportation to parks only

-lack of on-site childcare

-lack of room service

-lack of onsite recreation (such as Chip and Dale’s campfire sing a long)

But just because you might be missing part of these extras, it doesn’t mean you are lacking in Disney magic! Think about what you want to get out of your trip and what is most important to you.

courtesy of https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/resorts/all-star-movies-resort/ courtesy of https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/resorts/all-star-movies-resort//caption

 

All Star Movies in the Animal Kingdom Resort Area is a resort dedicated to all of the loved Disney films we have grown up with. This resort has 1,920 rooms each about 260 square feet. Yes they are small in size, but so is the price tag! As with many of the hotels in WDW the rooms open up in an external hallway and can overlook the grounds, pool area, or parking lot. This resort has giant larger than life icons from Mighty Ducks, Herbie the LoveBug, 101 Dalmatians, Toy Story, and Fantasia. 

fantasia asmovieherbie asmoviepuppy asmoviebuzz asmovie

In the actual guest rooms each will have either a king sized bed or 2 double beds. They also have a small fridge, tv, phone, clock, small dresser,1 sink/vanity area, tub and toilet in separate bathroom, and small open area rack by the vanity area in the bathroom. All of the guest rooms have the similar theme of decoration and bedding regardless of which themed area you are in.

Some of the rooms do have connecting doors to the next room, if you are needing more space for your family. It can be less expensive to reserve 2 rooms instead of getting a larger family suite. The rooms accommodate a family of 4 and a child under 2 years old. If you need a pack and play you can reserve them during your stay as well, if they are available. If you are needing a handicapped accessible room they do have them available too, as well as elevators for upper floors.

There are 2 different type of rooms available, Standard and Preferred. You will see this in almost all of the resorts. The difference is Standard will maybe be further away from amenities and not have the greatest view (parking lot). Preferred is usually in a more desirable location and view. Of course if you are truly wanting Value (less expensive) Standard is the way to go.

asmovie rmAllStarMoviesCAD

Of course the best part of staying in a hotel is the pool! All Star Movies has 2 pools for you to choose from! The Mighty Ducks and Fantasia pool areas. Disney does offer life jackets for those little swimmers needing them free of charge! Ask a life guard where they are in each pool area. Yes, Disney has life guards for their pools! As someone who has stayed in the resorts I can tell you they are very dedicated to the safety of your family. The life guards are not there 24 hours a day so check with the guest service area when you check in what their hours are. You must be a resort guest with a Magic Band to open the gate to the pools, however if you are staying in any of the All Star resorts, you may enjoy the pools at the other All Star resorts as well. This is a perk to staying in these particular hotels. As well as a great way to check out the other resort properties to see if it’s somewhere you’d like to stay in the future.

mighty duck poolfantasia pool

 

All Star Movies also has a play ground area, an arcade and Movies Under the Stars in the Fantasia pool area if your family is interested in participating in all that the resort has to offer. For the Movies Under the Stars the guest services area will have a schedule for you when you check in. The arcade area has similar games that you would find in places like Chuck E Cheese. Instead of tickets and tokens they will have a game card to keep that information. It does cost money to play the games, but usually they will give a credit at check in for a certain amount, like $25 if it’s a part of your package.

asmovies arcade

As with all Disney resorts, laundry facilities are available and laundry detergent and softener can be purchased. You can either used coins to operate the machines and buy the soap or you can use your credit/debit card. Usually it’s $1 to do a load in the washer and $1 to dry a load. Using the facility to wash your clothes is a great way to pack less clothing, and more room for souvenirs!

Check in is at 4pm, however, if you arrive early the cast members would be happy to store your luggage while you wait! Check out is at 11am. If you are not leaving for awhile, the cast members again will hold your luggage while you wait for your flight.

All Star Movies is probably the least expensive resort out of all the properties. Here is a list of what the non discounted rates are for 2015:

Date Range Rate Standard Room Preferred Room
Jan 1-Jan 3 New Years $191 $208
Jan 4-Jan 7 Value $96/$129 $118/$139
Jan 8-Jan 10 Marathon $131 $142
Jan 11-Jan 15 Value $96/$129 $118/$139
Jan 16-Jan 18 MLK $131 $155
Jan 19-Feb 11 Value $96/$129 $118/$139
Feb 12 Peak $153/$186 $171/$205
Feb 13-Feb 15 Presidents Weekend $188 $205
Feb 16-Feb 21 Peak $153/$186 $171/$205
Feb 22-Mar 5 Regular $123/$156 $149/$177
Mar 6-Mar 28 Peak $153/$186 $171/$205
Mar 29-Apr 11 Easter $192 $210
Apr 12-May 21 Regular $123/$156 $149/$177
May 22-May 24 Memorial Day $164 $186
May 25-May 28 Regular $123/$156 $149/$177
May 29-Jul 2 Summer $150/$179 $168/$197
Jul 3-Jul 5 July 4th $188 $207
Jul 6-Aug 15 Summer $150/$179 $168/$197
Aug 16-Sep 10 Value 2 $104/$127 $122/$145
Sep 11-Oct 8 Fall $111/$134 $129/$151
Oct 9-Oct 11 Columbus Day $140 $157
Oct 12-Nov 5 Fall $111/$134 $129/$151
Nov 6-Nov 8 Veterans Day $139 $157
Nov 9-Nov 20 Fall $111/$134 $129/$151
Nov 21-Nov 27 Thanksgiving $155 $179
Nov 28-Dec 10 Fall $111/$134 $129/$151
Dec 11-Dec 17 Regular $123/$156 $149/$177
Dec 18-Dec 31 Holiday $199 $217

Also, here is a map of the resort:

asmoviesmap

 

I hope you have learned everything you wanted to know about the resort! I haven’t ever stayed here so if I’m forgetting something and it’s your family favorite please let me know!

Happy Veterans Day

My Daddy and I at my wedding. I love his Dress Blues, he looks so handsome!

My Daddy and I at my wedding. I love his Dress Blues, he looks so handsome!

Happy Veterans Day to all of the men and women who have served our country and the sacrifices they made for our freedom! As well as their families who also have made sacrifices for us too! It’s not easy sometimes to have a husband, son, father, mother, wife, daughter who isn’t home for months at a time and is very often in the face of danger. As a military brat myself I can remember many times as a little girl crying and hanging on my Daddy’s leg when he would have to go TDY. As a young child it seemed to me he was always gone and very rarely home. Of course I also remember my Dad trying to ease the sadness by bringing me back treasures from countries he had been to.

I remember being expected to always be on my best behavior at military functions because my actions reflected on my father. I also recall many a holiday having our house filled with fellow military families or those men who weren’t able to be with their own loved ones. We didn’t live near our actual family either so all of us became one big family together. When someone was given orders to a new duty station we all pitched in to help them pack and move. When a new service member and their family came we welcomed them like a long lost family member and helped them transition to the place that would become their home for the next few years. It didn’t matter where in the world you were. If you were a part of the military, you were family.

The men and women who have served have often witnessed and been a part of difficult and scary situations. When they come home it can be hard for them to shut those memories off and integrate back into everyday life. As someone who now works with veterans I witness this everyday. Many think of just the sacrifices that they make during active duty, but they don’t realize the sacrifice of a normal life after coming home. Which is why I think thanking our nations veterans everyday is important. As well as having compassion, patience and understanding for when they may have difficulty making the transition back into civilian life. As a loved one of a veteran this is not always easy and can be frustrating when you see them having a hard time over and over again. It really takes a village to take care of the men and women who have taken care of us.

One way that I have seen the public and businesses try to help veterans is with free or low cost goods and services. I thought I would include a list of a few things that are available for veterans today, Veterans Day:

-California Pizza Kitchen; Veterans and Active Duty receive a complimentary entree from a special Veterans Menu.

-Applebees; Also receive a complimentary meal

-Denny’s; Free Grand Slam breakfast from 5am-noon

-Great Clips; Free haircut for Veterans from today until December 31, 2014

-Golden Corral; On Monday November 17th from 5pm-9pm Veterans and Active Duty have complimentary dinner

-Starbucks; Free tall coffee to Veterans, Active Duty and their spouses

-IHOP; free red white and blue pancakes from 7am-7pm

-24 Hour Fitness; free use of health clubs for Veterans and Active Duty

-Krispy Kreme; free donut and small coffee for Veterans and Active Duty

-Chuck E Cheese; 20 free tokens from today through Saturday

Of course this is just a small list, there may be local businesses in your area that are also participating.

Thank you again to our Active Duty Service Members, Veterans and their families.

vd1

 

 

DIY Body Wash From Bar Soap

I don’t know about you all but Pinterest is a serious addiction! I could be on there all day! I find things I never knew you could make or do. So when I stumbled upon a pin about making body wash from Dove bars of soap I wondered if it would work for any bar of soap. There are lots out there for Dove specifically but not many for other brands. And since I am a rebel I wanted to try to make it with another brand. I also noticed that many of the recipes called for glycerin. I don’t know about you guys but what the heck would I use glycerin for besides this? I like things that do double duty. So I used coconut oil instead. I love coconut oil since you can cook with it as well as use it for body products. It did not take me very much time at all to make this and I will breakdown the cost of making it versus buying a bottle of body wash at the store. The frugal part of me was stoked!

Ingredients:

4 bars of any kind of soap, I used Caress because it was on sale

8 cups of water. It seems the ratio of 2 cups of water to 1 bar of soap works well

1-2 Tbsp of coconut oil (I used 2)

cheese grater

large stock pot

containers to hold your body wash (good thing I had an empty bottle graveyard!)

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Doesn’t have to be this particular brand of course! Just any unrefined coconut oil.

diy soap1

As well as any kind of soap! I bought this because it had the Buy 3 Get 1 free.

diy soap3

Start grating the soap, only took about 20 minutes to grate all 4 bars.

All 4 bars grated. It looks like cheese haha!

All 4 bars grated. It looks like cheese haha!

Put your 8 cups of water in the stock pot and put on Medium heat!

Put your 8 cups of water in the stock pot and put on Medium heat!

Put the grated soap into the water, start to stir it often to melt the soap bits. Be careful to not stir forcefully otherwise you will have bubbles overflow!

Put the grated soap into the water, start to stir it often to melt the soap bits. Be careful to not stir forcefully otherwise you will have bubbles overflow!

After it's melted it will look similar to this. Time to take it off the heat.

After it’s melted it will look similar to this. Time to take it off the heat.

Once it's off the heat, add the coconut oil and stir to combine. Let the body wash sit for at least an hour to cool.

Once it’s off the heat, add the coconut oil and stir to combine. Let the body wash sit for at least an hour to cool.

Many other pins said to wait until the mixture was thickened to put in bottles. I decided to do it while it was still thin. I got a ladle and put it in a pyrex cup. Then I put a funnel in the bottles and poured it in.

Many other pins said to wait until the mixture was thickened to put in bottles. I decided to do it while it was still thin. I got a ladle and put it in a pyrex cup. Then I put a funnel in the bottles and poured it in.

The 4 bars of soap made 4 bottles of wash. Allow 24 hours to thicken and cool.

The 4 bars of soap made 4 bottles of wash. Allow 24 hours to thicken and cool.

So after I made the body wash I decided to break down the cost of making the soap versus just buying the body wash at the store. I looked at the Caress body wash with the same scent at the store when I bought it so I could compare:

4 bars of soap: $2.97

Coconut oil: $6.88, I used 2 Tbsp so I used $.56 worth

Total for all DIY wash (80oz total): $3.53

Total for each individual bottle: $.88 !!!!!!!!!!!!!

Price of store bought body wash (18 oz bottle): $3.97

My DIY wash was a little thinner than the store bought so I may only put in 1 1/2 cups of water next time. When I told my husband how much cheaper it was he was surprised and thought I was a genius! It doesn’t make as big of suds as the regular wash, but that doesn’t bother me. Also, with the addition of the coconut oil it really moisturizes my skin, just in time for winter! Once I made my wash my son wanted me to make man soap. So I picked up some bars of soap for him and the other boys. We won’t have to make more body wash for a very long time!

Have you made your own body wash before? Were you surprised at the cost of making versus buying? If you try it out I would love to hear how yours came out!

 

Benefits Of Staying On WDW Property

So you are thinking of planning a trip to Walt Disney World! One of the first things you need to plan is where to stay! Yes it can be more expensive sometimes to stay on property versus staying off site. But Disney does have many advantages for Disney Hotel guests. It doesn’t matter what level you stay at, all guests have benefits that off site guests do not.

magical express

-Disney’s Magical Express. This is a great perk that entails once you check in your baggage at your departing airport you don’t have to worry about them again! Disney will transfer your luggage for you from MCO (Orlando International Airport) straight to your hotel room. You’ll be sent special luggage tags to put on your suitcases and Disney takes care of the rest! It sometimes can take a few hours for your luggage to reach you so it would be a good idea to pack swimsuits and other things you might need right away in your carry on. It also includes a ride from the airport to your hotel! You’ll travel in a comfortable motor coach and they have a great welcome video for you to enjoy! Both the ride and baggage transfer is complimentary to all hotel resort guests. You can also check into your flight right from your hotel once your trip is over and check your baggage. Then the “Magical Depress” will take you and your belonging sadly back to the airport to go home. This is the worst part of the trip! Seeing all of those happy faces just starting their vacations when you are leaving! But Disney tries to make it as painless as possible with getting you squared away to go home.


 

monorail

-Complimentary Parking and Transportation to Parks. If you drive to Disney instead of flying or you rent a car, parking at the hotel as well as the parks is FREE! Normally it would cost $17 per day. Also, Disney provides buses, monorails and boats to the parks, Downtown Disney, as well as back to your hotel room. So if you decide to use the service you don’t have to drive at all once you are on property.


 

white rabbit

-Extra Magic Hours. If you are staying on property you can get to the parks earlier, or stay later than others. Especially during those peak times when there’s high crowds this is a great way to get some more time in to ride your favorite attractions.


 

magic bands

-Magic Bands. This new technology that Disney has created is still working out the kinks with guests but many people are enjoying the benefits. Basically this bracelet that you wear is your park ticket, hotel key, credit card, Photo Pass and FastPass+ keeper. You do have the option to not have the credit card linked to them, especially for children.The Magic Band is included in the cost of your vacation, but if you are staying off property you can purchase the bands for an additional cost.


 

FP+

-FastPass+. If you’ve ever been to Disneyland or Walt Disney World you are already familiar with FastPass. You would go to a kiosk, stick in your park ticket and out would pop a time for you to return to ride an attraction for later. Disneyland still has them but WDW has upgraded to FastPass+. Now you can reserve the times you would like to ride 60 days in advance. Then when you get into the park you don’t have to do the mad dash to the kiosks! You can change the times around if your plan changes once you get closer to your date, if the times are available. Also, if plans change in the park you can access the My Disney Experience App on your phone. After you have used your 3 FP+ choices you can add another at the kiosks at the park. Non property guests can also use FP+, but they only can reserve their times 30 days in advance.


ddp

 

-Disney Dining Plans. If you like to have your meals pre-paid for and you think your family will eat enough to justify the cost, resort guests have the option to use this service. There are several tiers to choose from depending on your budget. Disney will sometimes offer Free Dining Plan opportunities, usually in the fall. Honestly I am not one to do the dining plan because my family just doesn’t eat enough for me to think it’s worth it. Especially when we bring a lot of food inside the parks. But once the boys get older and can eat their weight plus some in food I may change my mind!


dis free wifi

 

-Complimentary WiFi. Disney offers free high speed WiFi to their guests. Of course in the park anyone can partake in this but in the hotels the guests don’t have to pay extra for this service. Whether you are trying to cram in a little work in your trip, or accessing your My Disney Experience account, it’s nice that you don’t have to pay extra for this!


aoa

 

-Resort Hotel Entertainment. Disney really has a lot to do even in the hotels! Some restaurants in the hotels have character dining. All of the hotels have great themed pool areas as well as cast members during certain times of the day that have fun activities for everyone to do! I know my family had a great time hanging out in the pool at Art of Animation one afternoon participating in a trivia contest. We won an awesome beach ball! You also can watch Disney movies under the stars at the hotels. This is a great way to unwind after a busy day in the parks!


bog

 

-Make Disney Restaurant Reservations. Anyone can make dining reservations 180 days in advance. But if you are staying on property you can make reservations 180 +10 days in advance. Basically guests can make reservations for their whole vacation on the 180th day. Off site guests have to make the reservations exactly on the 180 day. Then call the next day for the next day of their trip. Does that make sense? It’s a time saver for when you are planning your trip.


WDW map

 

-Staying in the Disney Bubble. Once you are on Disney property you are immersed in all things Disney! You really can block out the outside world and just be in the moment. It can really add to the ambiance and enrich the experiences you family will share.

Do you love staying on property? Do you have a favorite resort? Our family is still partial to Art of Animation!

Election Day and other odds and ends!

voted

I hope you all have either voted or going today! I went and voted last week in early voting. I love early voting! No lines, take my time to read everything and no stress to hurry up! I took James with me since it was his day to work at home. I love being able to to include the kids when I can and teach them about our duties as Americans. I hope when they are older they understand the process and no matter how they vote they make an educated decision.


 

 

I also have some great news, well for me and our family anyway! On Friday I finally picked up my van! Oh how I have missed having all of the room! I appreciate my family, my husband’s family and their help and letting me borrow cars for the past 3 months! Yes, I was without a vehicle for exactly 88 days! This car accident has become extremely complicated and frustrating! I am thankful that I was not more seriously hurt but disappointed in lack of responsibility. I won’t say more then that because it is still an ongoing situation but I was so happy to have the van back and had to share!

van fixed

Yay the van is back! Pardon the weird parking job, I hadn’t had a chance to take the borrowed car back yet!


 

Of course Friday was also Halloween! Did your little ghouls and goblins collapse after the sugar crash and trekking all over the neighborhood? I know mine did! We went around our neighborhood for a while then met up with my brother in law and his family. They have a tradition of hitching up a trailer to either their truck or ranger  and put hay bales in the trailer. So we go around one of the more rural neighborhoods out here and the kids have a fun hay ride then go around the houses and get their treats! The kids love it! They were all decked out in their costumes and I didn’t dress up but had my festive Disney shirt on! When we got home after they looked at their loot I put on Nightmare Before Christmas. None of the kids lasted more than 10 minutes before they were out!

The boys all dressed up! Only James was gross and gruesome this year, I consider that a win! That mask was something else!

The boys all dressed up! Only James was gross and gruesome this year, I consider that a win! That mask was something else!

I love this shirt! Mickey and Minnie glow in the dark!

I love this shirt! Mickey and Minnie glow in the dark!


So I hope you all have taken a look at the Sweat Pink Store and the Tribe Sports shirts that they have there! I had told you about the 20% discount code the other day! I just got word yesterday that the code that they gave us ambassadors was having some trouble. So here is the correct one that works! SPTS-b55beafd Make sure you use it and soon! This is a great deal and pre order will only be for a few more weeks! If you used the previous code it should have still given you a discount. But if you were having trouble please let me know!

SPA performance tee

SPA RacebackWell, lots of little updates all in one post! Sometimes it’s nice to just put it all out there at once! Do you have any life happenings that you’d like to share? Are you still recovering from Halloween and your kids are already in Christmas mode?

 

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