G+ Modernizes Holiday Picts!

‘Tis the season to…add an animated touch to your holiday best on Google +

Merry Christmas!

Zombie Repellent and a Recipe for a Healthy Halloween

As a dedicated trick-or-treat bag enthusiast (gratis my two kiddos), I know first-hand how tricky it really is to stay healthy this time of year. Thing is, treats don’t have to be unhealthy to be creepilcious. So, with the help of Pinterest and a few creative spins on some spooktacular ideas, I’ve come up with a list of top edible haunts for this Halloween.

Trick your little creatures with these five Treats

 

5. Creepy Crudité

Fresh veggies and a nutritious dip and voila!

HalloweenCrudite

4. Swamp Smoothie

This swampy concoction can be created with your favorite fresh fruits. Simple tip: prepare baggies of fruit ahead of time and store in the freezer for a quick, blendable after school snack.

HalloweenSwampSmoothie

3. Witch’s Broom Treat Bags

Transform this sugary treat bag into a savory snack by adding your child’s favorite snack mix. Pretzels, nuts, Goldfish, dried fruit…and, of course, a little candy corn – because it *is* a festive veggie of sorts.

HalloweenBagOTreats

2. Orange-o-Lanterns

I’m just going to admit that my culinary patients might run short on this one, BUT for the crafty mama foodies out there, this is a masterpiece waiting to happen. Stuff your Orange-o-Lantern with a fruit medley and let your little goblins attack.

HalloweenOrangeTreat

1. Watermelon Brain

Zombies beware: seedless watermelon posing as a delicacy is deadly zombie repellent. Most commonly found in the burbs.

HalloweenWatermellonBrain

…and after all the damage is done (and because I do realize that while I’ve complied a perfectly healthy and delicious top five, there will still be abundant amounts of chocolate, caramel and nought to be had – yes, that is a personal confession).

Creepy Finale ~ Firefly Toothbrushes
firefly-toothbrush

Perfect for Halloween, changing colors are cast onto the child’s face as they brush…making brushing fun, and spooky enough to scare any lurking sugar!

Titans of the Ice Age

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Mammoths, Mastodons, saber-toothed cats and two kids, oh my! Those two crazy kiddos had a blast at the newest Denver Museum of Nature and Science exhibit – particularly exploring the giant, ancient poo display (which makes me think we have a whole new blog theme going on here).

This story of the  Snowmastodon Project is particularly interesting in that the Ice Age fossil site was unearthed near Snowmass Village, Colorado in 2010. Artifacts from the site can be viewed at DMNS along with demonstrations on how archeologists work on such a project.

After checking out the ‘Titans of the Ice Age,’ we made our way to the lab for further discovery. I was impressed with the many new features at the museum since our last visit! So, if it’s been a while or you simply have yet to get out to this vast museum full of discovery…it’s time to get out there…and into the Ice Age!

  • GRADE: All Ages
  • DATE/TIME: February 15 – May 27, 2013 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. The Museum is open seven days a week year-round.
  • COST $5/student (includes Museum admission), 1 free adult/10 students, $5/additional adult Scholarships may be available for eligible schools
  • Reservations and timed entry required. For reservation details and to fill out the Field Trip Request Form, click here or call 303.370.6000, M – F, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Is Botox Right for You?

Do you suffer from chronic headaches and migraines? Well, there may be something you can do about it…and Centura Network is hosting a FREE community event including physician presenters, food, prizes and more. Finally, we might have a useful purpose for that strange Botox stuff – I mean besides freezing faces into expressionless positions, ha!

Hormonal * Sinus * Migraine

Explore treatment options for ALL types of headaches.

WHEN: Saturday, Nov. 3, 2012

TIME: 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

WHERE: Sturm Hall on the University of Denver Campus

COST: FREE

To register, visit centuraneuro.org or call 800-327-6877 (option 1)
from 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. • Join us for brunch and door prizes!

The Centura Health Stroke Network offers prevention tips, life-saving screenings and numerous educational materials and resources no matter where you live in Colorado. Learn more at http://www.centura.org/stroke.

 

IKEA Children’s Play Tent Recall

With the summer 2011 premier of the new IKEA in Denver, I would guess that several of our children are playing in these potentially dangerous tents. Only three incidents have been reported at this time and only one injury, but with sharp wire ends posing a hazard as they break through the tent fabric, parents should be aware of this recall.

From the Consumer Product Safety Commission:

Name of Product: BUSA children’s folding tent

Units: About 58,000; 51,000 in the United States and 7,000 in Canada

Importer: IKEA North America Service, of Conshohocken, Pa.

Hazard: The steel wire frame of the tent can break, producing sharp
wire ends that can protrude through the tent fabric, posing a laceration or
puncture hazard.

Incidents/Injuries: Three incidents were reported, including one
injury. No incidents were reported in the US or Canada

Model number 90192009 is printed on a label attached to the interior seam of the tent. They were produced in Vietnam and sold exclusively at IKEA stores nationwide in August – September 2011 for approximately $8.

The CPSC recommends consumers return the product to the nearest IKEA immediately to receive a full refund. Questions: IKEA at (888) 966-4532 or www.ikea-usa.com.

Further details from CPSC.

How to Name a Baby

You don’t have to be in the market for a baby name to find this entertaining! Check out how your kids’ names are coming in on the charts this year and baby names that are trending for 2011.

And… if anyone asks, you’ll know how to name a baby ;) http://wineglasslipper.com/?p=127

Horsing Around ~ Beaver Creek Rodeo

When my children first caught word that we were headed to Beaver Creek to check out the Rodeo at Tracer Creek, they were, well, disappointed. My first thought: we’re in need of a little lesson on gratefulness…however, as I listened, I realized they had a bit of a point…how could we possibly just sit in the stands when an amazing Beaver Creek mountain adventure is just steps away? (Noelle was set on skiing – even packed her Obermeyer gear – which I later unpacked!)

So, I double checked with our awesome marketing adviser to make sure she thought the kids would do well hanging out at the rodeo – because it’s hard for me to accomplish my work if the kids are grumbly in all my photos, lol! She was positive we’d all have a blast…and she was right!

Boy howdy, were the kids surprised when they realized that Beaver Creek Rodeo *was* part of the mountain adventure!

We most certainly didn’t just sit in the stadium for this one. This particular rodeo was designed with children in mind. It catered to their interests – as well as their limited attention span. In the two hours, we accomplished adorable teepee tent face painting, a calf scramble, western style dining ~ thanks to Vail Valley Restaurants, snow cones, cotton candy, spectated a bit and introduced our little girl to her newest fascination…mutton bustin’!

Going into this, I had a bit of a clue as to the difficulty of mutton bustin’ – I was introduced to the sport at an early age. The difference between our four-year-old and myself is that my one, *very brief* go at it was plenty for me!

Noelle, on the other hand, had found her newest challenge – to win that trophy!

Imagine weighing approximately 35lbs, hopping on the back of a respectfully large, wooly animal corralled inside a chute – no saddle or harness – and then having the gate thrown open to let the sheep burst out into the open arena. Oh, and it had rained that day, so these little lambs were WET!

Most lil riders last just long enough for a quick photo…and the proof – her little pink boots hanging mid-air as she made a quick landing into the soggy dirt. (The sheep are very kind and careful to step over the kids…thank ewe.) It seemed to me the trauma of it all, followed by tears meant that we could check this one off her bucket list. I was wrong.

Random mentions of sheep in the car, deep thoughts on possible strategies and a new interest in the nearest rodeo…#MissionMuttonBustin’.

So, you might find our family this summer ~ chasing that dream they call rodeo.

For details on 2011 Beaver Creek Rodeo at Traer Creek: http://www.beavercreek.com/events-and-activities/rodeo.aspx
View my Beaver Creek Rodeo Photo Journal: http://wineglasslipper.wordpress.com/2011/07/05/horsing-around-beaver-creek/

Stay tuned for further details on our summer 2011 Beaver Creek adventure!

Mud. It’s Not Just For Pie Making

Ooey gooey, messy, slimy,  shapeless wet dirt. It can be quite entertaining and a whole lot of fun, but  what is this stuff good for, really? Well, far more than I had realized! After  visiting the Marvelous Mud, Clay Around the World exhibit at the Denver Art Museum, I have a whole new appreciation for  this wonder of a natural resource.

Because our kids tend to be high energy and have less of an attention span than we’d prefer while trying to  appreciate art in a museum, we usually leave the kids behind…but I absolutely want for my children to develop a love for the arts, so, when I heard about this  summer’s mud exhibit, I was excited to take the opportunity to introduce the  kids to the museum – and to dirty, messy, lovely, artistic, timeless, Marvelous  Mud!

A studio option, the day we visited Marvelous Mud, was wheel pottery. Si and Noelle had the choice to handbuild or use the potter’s wheel – not a tough decision for my kids. They were able to create their own masterpiece on the wheel ~ with the assistance of a trained professional. They learned the basic concepts of forming and shaping pottery from clay and the method used to harden the clay in the kiln. They also explored the many types of glaze and the various appearances as the liquid solidifies during the firing process. The entire lesson was quite intriguing to both kids and they loved the fact that they got to “play in the mud.”

The most fantastic part of this experience was that the kids didn’t even realize that they were learning, hands-on, about the many uses of mud. We even took a little tour of some of the main museum displays (can be risky with my four-year-old) and the kids seemed to understand that the different types of art all had one thing in common: mud. That seemed to make the tour very interesting…for the limited time they could handle themselves, wink.

If your kids are as active as mine, I think you’ll appreciate this interactive and explorative learning opportunity…disguised as plain ol’ messy fun! Don’t miss the Marvelous Mud exhibit this summer at the Denver Art Museum!

Check out the great list of special events:

José Antonio
Mateos Suárez & Fernando Jimon Melchor: Tonalá Painting
Techniques

July 16–17

Robyn Gray:
Silkscreen, Assembly

July 23–24

Gayla Lemke:
Large-scale Hand-building & Carving

July 30–31 & August 6–7

Janey Skeer:
Hand-building & Clay Stamps

August 13–14 & August 20–21

Bob Smith:
Potter’s Wheel

August 27–28

Shelley Schreiber:
Wheel-thrown, Assembled & Hand-built
Porcelain

September 3–4

Maynard Tischler:
Hand-building & Molds

September 10–11 & September 17–18

 

Horsing Around ~ Beaver Creek

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Bloomapalooza at the Butterfly Pavilion

by Guest Bloggn’ Mama Janell Swan @ “Cygnet Adventures

If you have never been to the Butterfly Pavillion in Broomfield, Colorado, you are missing out.  It’s a fun, educational, and interactive outing for kids and adults alike.  From petting tarantulas (something my daughters would never do, but an option, none the less) to having butterflies land on your shoulder, you’re sure to walk away with a little more knowledge of our natural world than you arrived with.

However, Bloomapalooza takes the fun to another level.  Crafts, live demonstrations, bouncy slides, dirty hands. . . need I say more? When we arrived, we were immediately invited to to participate in the Get Dirty project, planting flowers in the flower bed just outside the main entrance to the pavilion.  My kids didn’t need any prompting to begin digging in the dirt, and based on the enthusiasm and pride they showed with each little transplanted flower, I know we’ll be heading back frequently this summer to check on the growth of “their flower”.

After we visited all of our favorite indoor exhibits (the hairy spiders, spiny lobsters, and elegant butterflies that we always hope will land on our finger) we headed outdoors to the Discovery Gardens.  A crowd had gathered for the live demonstration on honeybees, but my daughters were, of course, more attracted to the giant blow-up bouncy slide.  After several (many) turns on the slide, I was able to interest them in the crafts.  They enjoyed crushing a bean with pliers (to demonstrate how a bird crushes food with its beak), decorating and coloring a mini flower pot, planting a little pot of herbs, and sampling some yummy trail mix (yes, if they’re hungry enough they’ll eat more than the M&Ms).

After our outdoor fun, we moved into the Tropical Odyssey,  where my daughters enjoyed crawling on the giant caterpillar and butterfly play structure, following a maze, and riding a zip line. . . weeeee!  We had to end our fun-filled day with a trip to the gift shop, which had many unique items to choose from.  My daughters each selected a bag of “jewels” (i.e., polished rocks) that they’ve been having fun playing “treasure hunt” with ever since.

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