Loveland Living Planet Aquarium

This post is part of a sponsored campaign as part of the Mom It Forward Influencer Network.

If you have followed along on my social accounts, you have probably seen by now that I am a single mom for the summer. We made a pretty huge life decision and are living apart for the summer so that my husband can go back to school and change career fields entirely. Living 5 hours apart isn’t easy, but it makes the weekends that we do get to see each other that much sweeter! We love finding special things to do as a family when we are all together. One thing that we tried recently was the Loveland Living Planet Aquarium.

Things to do at Loveland Living Planet Aquarium on www.girllovesglam.com

Before coming to the Loveland Living Planet Aquarium, I always thought it would be just a bunch of fish tanks. It was so much more than that! [Read more…]

Organize Your Family with One App

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Staying organized in 2017 is going to be so much easier with the help of the CURAGO app. I have partnered with CURAGO for this post.

I can’t even tell you how many apps I have tried over the years in my search of finding a great app to organize my family. I wasn’t ever able to find one that had all of the features I was looking for, so I always went back to my paper planner. The problem with my paper planner is that I forget it at home almost every time it seems like I would need it. What is the point of trying to stay organized if you can’t even be organized enough to remember to grab your planner in the first place?

I never forget my phone, so finding a great app to help organize my life just made more sense than trying to remember a paper planner each time I walked out of the door. That is why I was completely overjoyed to learn about the CURAGO app!

Curago App [Read more…]

Family Gift Ideas Everyone Will Enjoy

This holiday season, I’m swapping gifts with another blogger for her entire family for eBay’s holiday gift exchange. I’ve partnered with eBay to create this post! Enjoy!

I still remember receiving family gifts when I was younger. It may sound strange, but the thoughts of getting a gift as a family was almost more exciting to me than getting an individual gift! It was always such a mystery to see what gift would fit our entire family. It was so much fun to see what the gift givers thought our family would enjoy. Those gifts still go down as some of my favorite gifts I have ever been able to enjoy!

I love the idea of giving a family gift. Instead of purchasing several smaller gifts, you can put your entire gifting budget to one big item that everyone can enjoy. Most of those bigger ticket items aren’t things that families would typically think to spend their own money on, so they make really great gifts! 

I put together a few suggestions to help you find the perfect gift when you need family gift ideas!

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I loved searching for great gift ideas on eBay. It is a site that I can trust and I know that it is full of an incredible variety of items! No matter what types of things the family enjoys, eBay is sure to have something that would make a perfect gift for them! [Read more…]

Amazing Family Halloween Costumes

I grew up going to a church Halloween party that was always a highlight of the season. Everyone got into the Halloween spirit, but one family would steal the show every year with their themed costumes. I knew that when I had a family of my own, I wanted to have a family theme for as long as my kids would participate! As soon as I became a mom, those dreams became a reality. I LOVE family Halloween costumes! I have searched and found some of my favorite Halloween costumes online, including some looks from my own Halloweens past.

Amazing Family Halloween Costumes on www.girllovesglam.com

I just love to see what families choose to be together for Halloween. I think you can definitely tell when the kids have a say and when the choice was mostly made by the parents. No matter who chooses, I love any family who will dress up together! I hope you get some family Halloween costume inspiration! [Read more…]

Camping Hunt Preschool Activity and Backyard Campout Ideas

This post is sponsored by Kohl’s. All opinions are my own.

Backyard Campout Ideas for Familes

I will be the first to admit that I am not a huge camper. Since being married, we have camped annually at a family reunion and that has been about the extent of my camping adventures for the past eight years. Last summer, we wanted to try camping in our backyard before family reunion came around so that our four year old could get used to the idea of sleeping in a tent. Family reunion was her first real camping experience and we wanted to be totally prepared for it. I have heard of people taking their camp trailers to camping locations close to their home for the first time each season as kind of a trial run for the year. I loved that idea! It is a great way to make sure you have everything you will need when the time comes to actually go camping.

Backyard camping is the perfect solution for our family right now. We are still a pretty young family and are still getting the hang of things in the camping world. Since our first backyard campout, it has become a favorite of ours. There are a few things that can make backyard camping special. [Read more…]

Spring has almost sprung!

I felt the magic of Swiss herbs in Ricola Herb and Throat drops as part of a sponsored post for Socialstars. #swissherbs

I grew up in a totally different region of Idaho than I live in now. In the region I grew up in, this time of year is basically the ugliest thing you have ever seen. There is brown snow everywhere because of the snow beginning to melt and mixing with dirt and filth from the cars and the wind is enough to take you down to your knees and want to curl in a tiny ball until summer. Spring has never been a favorite of mine. That is why I can’t seem to believe my eyes when I see the forecast in the region of Idaho that I currently live in when I see temperatures in the 60’s and I can walk outside without being blown away. I am officially a fan of spring!

Playing outside in spring weather #swissherbs [Read more…]

Healing

12/6/15- Tomorrow was supposed to be a day of pure joy. The special 12 week mark in pregnancy where you feel comfortable making an announcement to the world that there is a baby coming soon. Instead of that joy, I dread tomorrow. Tomorrow will mark one week since that doctor’s appointment. The one where my doctor could no longer find a once beating heartbeat.

I didn’t feel any different that day. I was planning on taking my 3 year old to the appointment and was really talking it up because the last place she wanted to go was to the doctor’s office. As I went to put on her shoes, my neighbor called and asked if our daughter’s could have a play date. I was relieved that I wouldn’t have to wrestle a grumpy three year old at the doctor’s office and thanked my neighbor for offering to take her. Although this doctor’s appointment was happening at 11 weeks, which is relatively early in a pregnancy, this was actually my third appointment. I had been in twice for early ultrasounds when I had some cramping and spotting early on. The second appointment happened at 8 weeks and they were able to find a heartbeat. Our minds were calmed and our hearts instantly fell in love with that tiny little blob on the ultrasound screen as we watched the flicker of the tiny heartbeat. The doctor told us that there was still a chance of miscarriage, but the chances went significantly lower once there was a heartbeat found.

I felt at total ease when we went to Disneyland a week later. I had made sure to ask the doctor about what rides I would be okay riding and what things I should stay away from, but he assured me that as long as I stayed away from rides with a band that went right across my stomach or rides that went upside down, I would be alright. He reminded me that if a miscarriage was to happen, it would be a genetic thing this early on because the baby was so tiny and so well padded in my stomach at this point.

Disneyland was absolute magic. We truly had the best time as a family. We created memories that will last a lifetime. Memories that I grasp to now when I feel the absolute sorrow that I feel off and on. We made sure to take a family photo in front of the castle, complete with a shirt I was wearing with little Mickey ears on them as a way to announce the pregnancy to the world. We would wait until the 12 week mark to post it anywhere, but we loved that idea to announce it.

As soon as we got home, I uploaded the photo and ordered our Christmas cards from Shutterfly, announcing the pregnancy to the world.

The next day was when our lives changed forever. That doctor’s appointment. The one that happened almost a week ago. It was technically going to be treated like a normal first time appointment, complete with blood tests, urine samples, and questions about my last pregnancy. The nurse came in and asked me questions about my last pregnancy and sent in the doctor with a P.A. student to ask similar questions and get a follow up on how things were going as far as more cramping and bleeding went. I hadn’t had any and I was beginning to feel a lot better from morning sickness. Things were looking up now that I was getting past the first trimester. Before sending me to the nurse to do blood tests, the doctor wanted to do another ultrasound just to make sure everything still looked good.

As soon as he saw the ultrasound, I knew something was wrong. I couldn’t see a baby. He was explaining the ultrasound, pointing out my skin and my bladder. Then he said, “And here is the pregnancy.” Not the baby, but “the pregnancy”. He zoomed and zoomed to get a better view. He then proceeded to tell me, “There is the baby, but unfortunately what I am not seeing is a heartbeat.” At that moment, I didn’t feel like I had a heartbeat either. [Read more…]

5 Awesome Sidewalk Chalk Activities

We played these sidewalk chalk games and had fun in the sun with Banana Boat as part of a sponsored post for Socialstars #BestSummerEver

5 Awesome Sidewalk Chalk Activities

5 Awesome Sidewalk Chalk Activities on www.girllovesglam.com

Last week we were freezing, getting huge amounts of rain. This week has been crazy hot! That is what the weather likes to do to us in Idaho. As soon as the sun comes out, we all want to be outside! We have the sweetest neighbor kids who like to come over and play with my daughter and I wanted to come up with some fun sidewalk chalk activities that they could all play together and that the parents could even get involved in! Here are 5 sidewalk chalk activities that will keep your family busy this summer!

[Read more…]

How to Meal Plan Easily for your Family

When I don’t have a plan for dinner, I find myself spending money on going out to eat because I can’t figure out any other option. I used to have a major problem with this. My grocery bill was just as high, because I was buying groceries but I just didn’t make a plan at all and I found myself struggling to figure out something to make for dinner when it was too late in the day. My answer? Meal plan! I didn’t know how to meal plan. It sounds complicated, but it has been SO easy with my system I came up with. The best part? It is all on Pinterest aka the place we go to for our meal ideas anyway!

How to Meal Plan Easily for your Family on www.girllovesglam.com

First thing is first, you get pinning! You probably have already been doing this part! Pin all of the recipes that you like to any of your Pinterest boards. I have a few different boards that I regularly pin to with different recipes that I think look delicious.  [Read more…]

Family Night Basement Games with Energizer Bright Headlights

I am a member of the Collective Bias®  Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias and their client.

Sometimes coming up with activities for family night can be tough! Especially when you have a baby that can’t stay up too late. That is when I decide to get a little more creative when I come up with ideas for family activities. When I was trying to come up with an activity one night, I came up with a great idea! How about playing games in a dark basement with bright headlights on? Well guess what? It is a BLAST!

Family Night Basement Games

I got to try out a few Energizer night headlights that worked perfectly for our family night games! They were so fun, even the Energizer Bunny would be jealous! Headlights aren’t just used as work headlights anymore! To see my entire shopping trip, look here.

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The really cool thing about the headlights that I chose is that it has it has a read beam headlight and a regular work flashlight mode. They also come with batteries so you don’t have to buy any extras.

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When playing family night games, we found four fun games that worked really well with the headlights. The first one is called Judge. It is really similar to Hide and Seek, but when someone gets found, they follow the person who is it “The Judge”. They follow them trying to find the other people who are hiding. That person is also trying to get away from the Judge at the same time. The game ends when The Judge finds everyone hiding. The fun of this game is that it is all played in a dark basement! The only person who wears a headlight is The Judge.

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The next game is called Sardines. It is a pretty popular game that I have always enjoyed playing. It is kind of like Hide and Seek too. The way this game works, is everyone but the person who is “it” goes and hides. As each person is found, they follow the person who is “it” and try to find the other people hiding too. If they see someone hiding, they don’t tell the person who is “it” though. They secretly try to get away from the person who is “it” and hide with another person hiding. One by one, all of the people hiding try to get together like a can of sardines. When the person who is “it” finds everyone, the game is over. When playing in the dark, the person who is “it” wears a headlight while trying to find the people hiding.

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The next game uses the red beams on the headlights. Everyone wears a headlight for this game. They use the red beams as lasers. Play a game of laser tag using the red beams. Pick a predetermined amount of times that each player can get hit before the game is done. The person who hits the other person with the laser that specific amount of time first, wins! It gets crazy and fun!

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The last game is kick the can! It is played just like the classic night game, only this time, everyone is wearing headlights! One person is guarding the can and everyone else is trying to distract the person so that someone can sneak behind that person and knock the can over! It is a blast!

These games are a great way to spend time together with your family and have the time of your life! What games would you play with your family in a dark basement with headlights?