How to Throw a Moms Only Pool Party

Photos taken by Short & Sweet Photography.

if you’ve never had a moms only pool party, TRUST ME. you. need. to.

moms are often neglected when it comes to pool parties. during summer, us moms spend all our time packing-up the kids for swim playdates, swimming lessons and pool parties. when we get there, we have to try to put sunscreen on wiggly, whining kids…mulitple times. then during the pool time, we spend the entire time making sure that none of the kids drown, fight or run on the pool deck. if we are lucky enough to get in the water, we spend the whole time getting splashed and watching kids show us their mediocre tricks in the pool. so much fun for the kids….but not always as much fun for the moms.

Time for a Moms Only Swim Party

at a Moms Only Swim Party, you don’t have to worry about anyone but yourself! no wrangling kids, no whining, no kids begging for food, no crying, no fighting…talk about AMAZING! last year i went to my first Moms Only Swim Party and had such a blast, i knew i had to get more moms onboard with having one at least once a year.

How to Throw a Moms Only Pool Party

rule #1 – no kids allowed. unless it’s a baby…and even then, try to get a sitter. you will be glad you did.

rule #2 – have your Moms Only Pool Party BEFORE the end of the school year, during school hours. 11:00am is the perfect time to have it. that way you can enjoy lunch at the pool party and still have time to have fun before it’s time to pick up the kids.

rule #3 – invite all your mom friends. send out an evite, or start a Facebook event. this way everyone will be on the same page and can start chatting with each other to make plans. make sure to be inclusive of everyone…its the perfect time to invite a mom who may be shy or in need of friends. i can’t tell you how many times i have heard a mom tell me that she’s been lonely or doesn’t have any friends.

rule #4 – everyone must wear a bathing suit AND go swimming. no party poopers here. leave the bathing suit shaming at the door. us moms know how it is. so put on a bathing suit and enjoy yourself.

rule #5 – food. you must have yummy food. making the pool party potluck is even better. that way you get to experience a little bit of food from everyone. which equals – different tastes, different cultures, and different varieties.

rule #6 – drinks. you need lots of drinks…non-alchoholic and alcoholic are great! you can even mix drinks or make soda floats.

rule #7 – be silly. there is no shame in playing pool games and acting like kids. when is the last time you jumped off the diving board or slid down a waterslide.

rule #8 – take lots of pictures and video. with your phone is just fun. have your heard of Boomerang app? make sure to take some Boomerangs too. They are so much fun, and everyone will have a ball reminiscing over your fun photosafter the party is over.

rule #9 – chill. use this time to enjoy your mom friends. there will be no interruptions since the kids are at school, and you don’t have to worry that someone is going to drown.

rule #10 – most importantly…HAVE FUN. this is your time…and most likely, the ONLY time you will have to yourself with your friends between now and the end of summer! school is almost out….the kids will soon be around all. the. time.

last years Moms Only Pool Party was one of the best times i had with my friends. we are still talking about it now. and you can bet we already have this year’s scheduled. too bad the kids will still be in school…NOT!  now…go plan your own Moms Only Pool Party! trust me, you’ll be glad you did.

My 5 Favorite Spring Cleaning Tips

i don’t know about you, but we are in spring cleaning mode over here. start back up, so I’m taking the opportunity to get my spring cleaning done. i secretly love cleaning… now i’m not talking about cleaning up the everyday messes, i’m talking deep down cleaning. The kind of deep down cleaning you don’t always have a chance to do. it’s my favorite to see everything extra sparkling clean, so i partnered with Bounty to bring you this post with my 5 Favorite Spring Cleaning Tips.

this year, with the boys at school, i have a little sidekick that has me all to herself. she’s always trying to join in the fun –  including the cleaning. how i can say no to her wanting to help me? she is my “right-hand” lady, insisting on helping me scrub scuffs off floors and dirt from the baseboards. and i guess you can say the NEW Bounty Quick-Size Paper Towels are my “right-hand man!”  they are 2X more absorbent vs. the leading ordinary brand and Bounty, IS the Quicker Picker Upper. make sure you keep reading for an amazing deal on these happening now!

5 Spring Cleaning Tips

here are 5 of my favorite spring cleaning tips. i don’t have time to do these weekly, but a couple times of year gets my home back on track to looking fresh and clean.

1) Cleaning scuffs of the floor and wall – scuffs on floor and walls build up over time…and annoy me so much! to get rid of scuff on the floor you can either use a little toothpaste or multi-use cleaning product and a Bounty Quick-Size paper towel to gently rub the scuffs away. for the walls, a mixture of 2 cups of water, 1 tsp of vinegar and 1 tsp of dish liquid combined will help get the scuffs off. gently massage into the wall and wipe away.

2) Cleaning Baseboards – using just water, wipe the baseboards down with a Bounty Quick-Size paper towel paper towel. you can use a cotton swab to clean the cracks and a magic eraser to get the scuffs off. after the baseboards are clean, wipe them down with a dryer sheet to help propel any dust away.

3) Limescale on the sink and shower fixtures – to get rid of the build-up of limescale build-up around the sink handles, shower heads, shower handles and toilets, use this trick. soak a paper towel in vinegar (or limescale remover) and wrap the paper towel around the fixtures. let sit for 30 minutes to and hour and wipe away!

4) Removing gunk from your kitchen cabinet doors – cooking and grimy hands can leave dirty residue on kitchen cabinet doors. to remove the gunk without scratching, use 1 part cooking oil to 2 parts baking soda. mix together, and with a paper towel or toothbrush, rub the dirty spots till the gunk is gone. it will leave you wood cabinets nice and shiny.

5) Freshening up the toilets – even though you probably clean your toilets every week, they still may get a bit stinky over time. that’s when its time to do a deep clean. unscrew the seat and lid from the toilet base and wash it good with bleach or cleaner in the shower. with a Bounty paper towel, wash any residue from the base of the toilet where the seat was screwed on. use a flathead screw driver wrapped with a paper towel around the head of the screwdriver to clean between the toilet tank and toilet base. pour some vinegar into the tank to reduce smells and prevent water stains.

ask you can see from my tips, i use paper towels A LOT in my spring cleaning. the NEW Bounty Quick-Size Paper Towels are a must-have when tackling your big and small cleaning messes…especially as you are doing your spring cleaning.the size is just perfect, and you can size-up for larger jobs.

Right now you can cut down on your errands by easily ordering the NEW Bounty Quick-Size Paper Towels on Amazon. PLUS, you will save up to $7 on the Family 16ct Pack. here’s how – Add the Bounty Quick-Size Paper Towels to your cart by clicking HERE.  save $5 by using promo code 5QUICKBOUNTY. apply the $2 of coupon at check out!

with Amazon, it will be delivered to you doorstep without any hassle. plus, this pack of 16 family rolls equals 40 regular rolls, which makes it the perfect time to stock up during this limited-time Amazon deal.

happy spring cleaning!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Bounty. The opinions and text are all mine.

Doo Good with Scooby-Doo Movement

Thank you to warner Bros. For sponsoring this post. Scooby- doo and the Mystery Inc. Gang have teamed up with generationOn, the youth family division of points of light, to inspire, equip and mobilize kids, parents and Scooby-Doo fans to create meaningful change in their communities.

(Make sure to read to the end of this post for a Scooby-Doo-rrific giveaway!)

a couple weeks ago, the boys and i were thrilled to join Scooby-Doo for the Doo Good Mystery service project! We got up early in the morning and headed up to Los Angeles to join our pal Scooby-Doo for a day of service. what we’d be doing was all a mystery to us, but we knew we’d be helping others and be able to doo something paws-ative for our community! plus, when you have the chance to join Scooby-Doo’s gang….you take the opportunity. who could say no to that.

Scooby-Doo and the Mystery Inc. Gang, along with generationOn, are on a mission to get kids, parents, families and fans to Doo Good in their communities – to inspire them to make a positive difference in areas such as the environment, animal welfare, poverty, hunger and more, no matter how small they are. this Doo Good mystery service project we were working on, was part of this Doo Good movement…and we were excited to make a difference. let me tell you all about our day of service, it was pretty fun…we even had a few surprises.

first, we started with a healthy breakfast and some Scooby snacks. we needed to make sure we had the energy to do our best jobs. the boys were excited to be a part of the Mystery Inc. Gang…so stylish in their bell bottoms and all.

after breakfast, we were ready to solve the mystery and figure out how we would be helping the community that day…

but not before we got a huge surprise. what?!!!
is that a giant Mystery Machine?!!!!

getting to ride on the Mystery Machine totally made us feel like part of the gang. we loaded up with a bunch of other families and headed out to doo good in the community. when we arrived at our destination, we were in for another surprise. guess who greeted us???

it was Scooby-Doo!!!

everyone was super excited to see that Scooby-Doo himself would be joining in the service project. we all took a quick photo with him before we found out what we’d be doing. such a fun group of families – all ready to get working on something important.

now it was finally time to find out what we would be doing for the Doo Good mystery service project! we looked around and saw that we had just arrived at Mid City Prescott School of Enriched Sciences. an elementary school in Los Angeles that could use our help. the principal of the school, Mr. Panes told us that his school had a problem – their garden was over grown, full of weeds and needed to be tended to. So, the mystery was solved.

We would be planting a garden for a school in need!

everyone followed principal Panes and Scooby-Doo to the school garden. together, there’s no issue we can’t solve. and together we could get that garden fixed up and ready for the students of the school.

Jeepers! this is what the schools existing garden looked like. there were weeds to pull, planter beds to clean out, trees to plant, and compost to lay. Enrichla.org joined in the cause to help us create a garden that the students of this school could enjoy, learn from, and benefit from. we were excited to fix it up. we love gardening, so we knew we’d have fun even though we were working. and when there’s good to be done, we meddle! and boy did we meddle.

check out the photos from our day of service. we all worked hard…i was super impressed at how hard our kids worked. they were amazing and worked till the very end.

DOO GOOD. FEEL GOOD.

we worked the whole day reviving the school’s garden. we planted over ten fruit trees, got the planter beds ready for the children to start planting a summer crop, mulched and composted areas for planting, removed lots of weeds and made sure to recycle and reuse as we went. not only did we create a special place for the school children to learn and grow, but we ourselves learned a lot about gardening too. we also left inspired and excited to more doo good projects in our communities.

because this is how we felt after a job well done. we want to feel this again and again.

so how can we get this feeling again?…

Get Your Own Doo Good Kit

if you head over to www.ScoobyDooGood.com, you can download your own Doo Good tool kit. you’ve got to check it out, there is great information in it – fun ways and ideas on how kids and families can Doo Good. there are even crafts, and projects included.

helping your community is no longer a mystery! Scooby-Doo and the Mystery Inc. Gang are leading the charge in taking the ‘mystery’ out of helping the environment and are lending a hand (and paw) to protect our earth. there’s only one piece of the puzzle missing – you!

no matter how small the job, you can make a difference! please join the Gang in helping solve the world’s environmental challenges, and create tangible, visible change in your community. it’s time to #DooGood

Giveaway Time!!!

five winners will each win a one-year complimentary boomerang channel subscription!  yep…that’s five winners! – with a Boomerang channel subscription, you will be able to laugh with all the cartoons you love. stream more than 2,000 family-friendly cartoon episodes with your favorite icons – Scooby-Doo, bugs bunny, tom & jerry and more. Now you can have cartoons at home or on-the-go!

enter via Rafflecopter below. contest ends May 8th at 11:59 pm. five (5) winners will be randomly selected. thank you to Warner Bros. and Boomerang for providing these products. Giveaway open to adults 18+ based in the united states. limited to one submission per person.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

{ Disclosure: I was selected by Warner Bros. To participate in the Doo Good campaign. The content and opinions expressed here are all my own.}

Celebrating National Princess Week with LEGO DUPLO

did you know that the week of April 22nd – 28th is National Princess Week!!! our family is so thrilled that we finally have a little princess in our house. we’ve had almost 16 months with our little princess, and it’s been so much fun. playing with dolls and girly toys is something i have been dreaming of doing with a little girl, and it’s been especially fun dressing up Miss Dani Kat in ruffles and bows. she is definitely our little princess.

to celebrate National Princess Week, i dressed Dani in a Belle inspired party dress and we had a tea party with the LEGO DUPLO Belle’s Tea Party. Dani is just getting old enough to play with LEGO DUPLO. she has been watching her brothers play LEGOS since she was born, so it is exciting for her to be able to join in the fun. her motor skills are getting stronger each day, and watching her little fingers put together the DUPLO pieces is so fun. LEGO DUPLO has some pretty adorable Disney Princess sets such as Cinderella’s Magical Castle and Rapunzel’s Castle.

but Belle reminds me of Dani, so this became our first DUPLO LEGO® set.

LEGO DUPLO products are specially designed to be fun and easy for little hands. they are suitable for ages 2-5, but i supervise Dani at 16 months while she is playing with them, and she is loving them. i enjoy them just as much. did you see the cute skirt that Belle can wear.

the LEGO DUPLO Belle’s Tea Party includes the Disney character figures – Belle, Mrs. Potts, Chip and Cogsworth. plus it includes DUPLO pieces that are easy-to-build into a castle, fireplace or magical kitchen. it also features a fireplace with opening door and a table with 2 chairs. by playing with DUPLO LEGOS at an early age, i am sure Dani is developing early construction skills and will be ready to play with regular LEGOS sooner than later.

we can’t wait to collect the rest of the LEGO DUPLO Disney Princess sets! they are so cute and perfect for us Disney fanatics…psst, i probably want them even more than Dani.

Finding Fairy Houses on the Oso Creek Fairy Trail in Mission Viejo

this weekend, we headed over to see if we could spot the Caring Fairies of the Oso Creek Trail in Mission Viejo. these are the same Caring Fairies of the Aliso Summit Trail in Laguna Niguel. they found a new home at the Oso Creek Trail since the residents of Laguna Niguel didn’t appreciate the traffic these popular fairy houses brought to their community. it was sad that the fairies had to move, but i can tell you that the are doing very well in Mission Viejo. and we had such an awesome time looking for the fairy houses along the Oso Creek Fairy Trail.

if you haven’t been to the Oso Creek Trail in Mission Viejo, you should try and check it out sometime. it is one of the best family friendly trails in Orange County. great for all ages, it has art, statues, benches and a park along it’s route, plenty of shade, and now…dozens of fairy houses hidden  along the trail. you have to look closely or you will miss them – they are found in tree stumps, fence posts, rocks, bushes and other natural landmarks.

to visit the Oso Creek Fairy Trail, you will want to park at 27301 La Paz Road, Mission Viejo, California 92692, near the Potocki Center for the Arts. there is a parking lot with free public parking at the beginning of the trail. you can also pick up a fairy map at the Potocki Center for the Arts when it is open from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm. i do admit it was kind of hard to read at first….however, it did become easier after we found some of the fairy houses.

when you enter the trail, you will have to look very closely to find the fairy houses. they are smaller than you think, and easy to miss.  to start you on your journey, look for the first fairy house on the trail. it is located at the bottom of a fence post, next to the fence that leads from the parking lot to the Oso Creek Trail. it has a tiny welcome sign and sits below brightly colored pink bougainvillea.

from there, keep you eyes open to spot more fairy houses. they are found along both side the trail that follows the east side of the creek. there are also a few houses on other side of the creek, but you do not need to cross the bridge over the creek if you don’t want to. there are plenty of houses on the main side. however, there are some great hiking trail on the side if you want to find more fairy houses.

we had the best time with our two littlest kids searching the trail for the fairy houses. in my opinion, the OS Creek Trail is the best trail in Orange County for toddlers and young kids. most is paved and there are turnouts that have grass to run in, benches and things to explore. you will find fair houses in all these turnouts.

look really closely at the bottom of this fence post. do you see it?

yes, there is a time fairy house located at the bottom. they are truly magical, and fun to find. even us adults had the best time…plus we got some exercise and fresh air.

the details are amazing and the kids had fun pointing out the little objects they saw. each of the fairy houses had items such as brooms, pathways, chairs or stools, and miniature gardens.

the fairy houses can be found in all sorts of places, so you should take the Oso Creek Trail one way on your way up and another way on your way back.

finding the fairy houses along the trail was also a great learning experience – where we could teach…especially our baby girl, not to touch and just look. it took a few times, but she finally caught on that it was fun to look and take the beauty of each of the little houses, and soon she was running to each location to see each of them.

here are some photos from our adventure finding fairy houses on the Oso Creek Trail.


there will be a stretch of trail where there won’t many fairy houses, and you will come to a mosaic wall and a stairway on the other.

you can take the stairway up to the park at the top. turn right and head pass the sports fields towards the playground. you will be going back towards the parking lot from where you began. once you get to the bear statues, you will find a few more fairy houses.

you will come to the playground, there aren’t any fairy houses around it (as far as we could see), but once you pass it and come to the trail that leads back down to the lower trail, you will start to see them again.

then, at the bottom of the ramp, turn left to go back towards the parking lot where you parked. you can continue to look for any fairy houses you missed. we found some really cool ones like a fairy library and a fairy coffee house.

it truly was a magical evening. such a joy to be out in nature, enjoying the fresh air, and seeing the children excited to find those fairy houses.we came across so many other families experiencing the same thing. all the children eager to hunt those magical fairy houses. this is the life i love living in the OC.