Sammy Makes Six

Aug 19, 2016

Fun Things To do Before the End of Summer

This is a sponsored post in collaboration with Mirum Shopper, however all opinions are my own.

If you live in California then your children are probably back in school by now. But that doesn't mean that summer has ended, not officially. We still have until the end of next month to enjoy the sun, the sand, and the surf! If you live in California then you know how lucky we are to have so many things to do close by. Today I want to share some of the fun stuff that you can do on the weekends with the kids so that you can enjoy what's left of summer. I'm writing this on a Friday afternoon and I can tell you that we already have plans for both days this weekend. Just because the kids are back in school doesn't mean we have to miss out on the last of the summer adventures. 

the beach: the beach is a must have for all Californians. There's nothing more fun for our kiddos than to get in the car and drive out to the beach for a full day of sun and fun in the water. What's really nice about going to the beach at the very tail end of summer is that most of the crowds have gone away and you can find parking faster and find beaches that are not as packed as they were the last few months. Grab a cooler full of drinks for the kids and head on out for a fun day at the beach! Plus going to the beach is actually super budget friendly.

the pool: most towns have a public pool that you can pay a few bucks to enjoy. While our town is not the biggest we do have a very nice public pool that also gives swimming lessons during the summer.

the roadtrip: on those days that nobody wants to visit the pool or the park there is nothing more fun than just throwing everybody into the car and going for a good old-fashioned road trip. I love myself a good road trip. It's so fun to hit the road and not really have a destination planned. The fun part of the trip is just enjoying the open road and seeing where it will take you.

hiking: I do admit that we are not the biggest fans of nature or exercise, but because we do live in a beautiful area of the mountains, we do like to enjoy a hike here and there. This is a great way to take the kids out and let them really immerse themselves in the beauty of all that nature has to offer. 

the park: there is no better best friend to moms and dads than the local parks. We visit our local parks at least twice a week if not more. Children, especially the smaller ones have so much energy that they need to burn and on a hot summer day there's nothing better than hitting the park. Plus it's really fun when the ice cream man passes by and we can cool off with some yummy nieves

theme park: another perk of living in Southern California has to be the many theme parks in the area. One of the children's favorite places to visit has to be LEGOLAND California Resort. The little boys just went last week to celebrate a birthday and already they are asking when they can go back. Legoland is conveniently located in my hometown of Carlsbad so it's a perfect summer staycation for us. We can head down for a weekend and spend a day there plus the next day at Tamarack Beach, which is my favorite beach of all.

LEGOLAND California Resort FREE ticket offer:

Purchase three Unilever ice cream products at Vons/Pavilions and Albertsons and get a FREE one-day child ticket to LEGOLAND with a paid adult ticket. Simply purchase three of the ice cream products below and you will get your coupon at checkout. 

Participating Products:

Magnum Double Caramel

Good Humor Strawberry Shortcake

Popsicle Cherry, Orange, Grape

Klondike Original

Fruttare Mango

Breyers Natural Vanilla

Ben & Jerry’s Brownie Batter Core

I see a LEGOLAND staycation coming in the near future, probably as a way to celebrate the official end of summer. And getting the free ticket is going to be super easy because these are all ice cream favorites that my family already loves. Have I mentioned how ice cream doesn't last at my house?

What a great way to cool off this summer with some delicious ice cream and get a few free tickets to one of our favorite destinations. Do your kids love LEGOLAND and ice cream as much as mine do? Take advantage of the #123kidsgofree promotion and I will see you at LEGOLAND!

Aug 16, 2016

Tips for Introducing Kittens to Your Dog

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #PerfectPortions #CollectiveBias

As a lot of you already know, Rocky has been art of our family for about two years now. We were not expecting to own a dog but when she came into our life we welcomed her into the family with open arms. Recently two kittens have also come into the family, very much like she did. Truth be told I was really terrified about introducing her to them because as a first time dog owner, I had no idea how she was going to react. 

Not that Rocky is a mean or aggressive dog, she's a very small dog and isn't much of a threat. But next to the small kittens she's much bigger and definitely not used to how playful they are and how they think her tail is a toy. So we've been working on blending our little family of pets for 2 months now and we've come to the point where they are all in the same room most of the day and we've gotten past most of the fighting. I'm no longer horrified to leave them alone together and have learned most of the do's and don'ts. I'm sure there will be much more to learn ahead, but for now I would like to share some of what we have learned in this journey of introducing new kittens to your current pet dog. 

In the beginning keep them separated: The kittens came to us as babies and there was no way we were going to put them near Rocky. As nice as your dog is you really have to be careful because dogs are so much stronger and accidents can happen. For the first weeks we kept the kitten confined to their own space with a door closed between them at all times. During this time the kittens are getting used to their new surroundings and home and need that time to adjust anyways. 

Start introducing slowly: After the kittens had been with us a few weeks and were used to their new space, we began to leave the door open between the two spaces for short moments. This allowed the dog to see there was someone else next door and start getting used to their scent. If she ever tried walking into the cats room, for their food, we wouldn't let her. At first it was just about letting her know they were there so she wouldn't bark when we finally brought them out. 

Letting them meet: I'd love to say that one day we brought the kittens out and everyone was thrilled to pieces, but it was not the case. It took Rocky time to adjust to these new black creatures roaming all over her living room and getting to get on the furniture, something she's not allowed to do. Plus it really hurt her to see the kittens getting picked up and played with so much. There was definitely jealousy very much like you see with siblings when a new baby comes home. That's why I suggest extra playtime with your dog at the beginning of introducing new pets to them.

Separation at mealtime: I read a lot of articles stating that it's good to keep animals in the same room to eat just in different sides. That did not work for us because Rocky loves to eat and she is very territorial when it comes to food, even when it's NOT her food. When the kittens are getting their meals, especially when it's wet food, we have to separate them. Really, it depends on your dog and how it behaves around food, but we definitely separate our pets at mealtime. 

Mealtime is one of the kittens favorite times of the day especially because they are now big enough to enjoy SHEBA® Meaty Tender Sticks with Chicken. SHEBA® cat treats are made with real meat and no artificial flavors and they really like them. We have to hide these treats from Rocky for sure because she's been known to steal them away. 

Something else that's also made mealtime easier are SHEBA® PERFECT PORTIONS™ meals. With flavors like: SHEBA® PERFECT PORTIONS™ Paté In Natural Juices Savory Chicken Entrée, SHEBA® PERFECT PORTIONS™ Cuts In Gravy Signature Tuna Entrée and SHEBA® PERFECT PORTIONS™ Paté In Natural Juices Roasted Turkey Entrée, we can give the kittens a varied menu that they enjoy. 

Most importantly SHEBA® PERFECT PORTIONS™ have taken the guess work out feeding time because you get the exact portion in each little tray. This ensures we don't overfeed them so they can stay as healthy as can be while still getting the proper nutrition. And they know when it's feeding time. When they see one of us at the counter opening up the little trays and filling up their bowls, it's the most exciting time of the day. 

Find SHEBA® PERFECT PORTIONS™ Multipack Chicken Entrée and Turkey Entrée Wet Cat Food 2.6 oz. (12 Twin Packs) and the rest of the SHEBA® PERFECT PORTIONS™ line at Walmart

Right now I think we're pretty well adjusted. The kittens are totally enamored with Rocky and would love for her to play with them while she prefers for them to leave her alone. I hope one day she'll soften up and learn to love them back, and until then she's at least okay with them. If you're going to be introducing kittens to your pet doggy then I hope my tips have been helpful. As a first time pet owner I know that I turned to the internet when it was time to unite them and I am so glad we are past that first stage. Click the link to find a lot more inspiration for your cats and learn more abouSHEBA® WHAT CATS WANT™.

Aug 5, 2016

Angry Birds Movie Night w/ Family Mobile

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser, Walmart Family Mobile.All opinions are mine alone. #AngryForSavings #CollectiveBias

Saving money is a big deal around here, especially since we just got back from vacation and have all of the back-to-school expenses in front of us. With all new school uniforms, shoes and school supplies to have to purchase, I need to find as many ways to save money in other areas of our life. One thing that I aways get a great value on that doesn't cost me any added stress is Sammy's phone bill because she has Walmart Family Mobile. She's going on two years with Walmart Family Mobile and in recent months we upgraded her service so she has faster unlimited data (10GB of 4G LTE) and just got her a new phone for this school year. It's pretty exciting to be able to head back to class with a new phone, especially for me because I didn't spend as much as most parents do on their kids phones and she's happy. Plus we're secure in the fact that we can get in touch with her at any moment should an emergency arise. 

The Walmart Family Mobile PLUS Plan offers: Unlimited Talk, Text, & Data which includes up to 10GB of 4G LTE plus a free movie on VUDU every month ($7 value) per line for $49.88. Her new phone is the Coolpad Catalyst which only cost *$59.88 and has everything she needs to play games, go online for school activities and stay in touch with family and friends. 

One of the perks of the Walmart Family Mobile Plus plan is that she gets one free VUDU movie per month and this month it has been all about the Angry Birds! Funny that Angry Birds are back, I remember when they came out years ago and how popular they were. My older girls who loved them back then, are as excited as she that they have made a comeback. 

As soon as she found out that the Angry Birds movie was available, she invited her friend over to come and watch with her by sending her a photo text from her new phone. 

With a large data bucket of 10GB of 4G LTE data Sammy can watch the movie while taking photos to text her sisters, play Angry Birds Action! after the movie, and I don't have to worry about her going over on data or extra charges. 

With everything that kids and adults do on their phones these days, limited data plans are just too restrictive. 

You can find the Walmart Family Mobile Plus plan and phones at your local Walmart store, simply look for the mobile phone area or kiosk and start by choosing your cell phone. Next pick up a starter kit which is normally $25 and right now on rollback for only $19.88. The Walmart Family Mobile Plus service bills you later so you start service for only the cost of the phone and $19.88! How does that compare to other carriers? That's exactly why we chose Walmart Family Mobile Plus for all of the kids in our family.

Visit the Walmart Family Mobile Hub to find an in-store event near you to meet with a Walmart Family Mobile rep. At the event you can get a code for a free power up for the Endless Runner Game on the Angry Birds Action! app. Find the Angry Birds Display and Scan the Angry Birds code on the displays to unlock a selfie augmented reality experience with the Hatchlings. 

*All prices for phones and plans included in this post are accurate as of the date of posting; however, these prices are subject to change. Please refer to or your local Walmart for current pricing. 

Aug 3, 2016

Princess Elena of Avalor

This is part of a sponsored collaboration with DiMeMedia and Disney Channel. However, all opinions expressed are my own.

Last week the kids and I had a viewing party for the new Disney series, Princess Elena of Avalor, the first Latina princess, and I could not be happier that we now have a Latina princess for the girls to look up to. I really keep an eye out for what Sammy watches on television and I always know that she can watch the Disney channel without having to worry. With the new show, Princess Elena of Avalor, she has someone that she can hopefully learn the true qualities of a leader, like being brave, having compassion and strength of character. 

The viewing party was a lot of fun as the kids had been really looking forward to the premiere and they had a blast doing all of the arts and crafts before the show started. 

Kids love parties, even if it's just little ones like this one. We talked all about the Princess Elena of Avalor premiere and how we thought the princess would be. They got to spend fun time coloring, playing crafting and just having some quality time together with each other and a few friends. 

Princess Elena of Avalor also shows how families are important and that's something else I always teach the kids. No one is more important than family and they all have to love each other and be ready to support each other as they get older, always. 

 The new series, Princess Elena of Avalor was a huge hit with the kids and I know it's a series that they will not only enjoy watching in the future, but that will teach them important and positive qualities.

Sammy has now watched the premiere episode of Princess Elena of Avalor a few times and today I asked her what she thinks of the princess and she told me that she thinks Princess Elena of Avalor is very brave. 

That's a quality that is very important for not just Sammy but all young girls to see. 

Right now in the real world, we have a woman who is also very brave, fighting for equality in a world that isn't ready for a woman to lead. These are exactly the type of women that I want Sammy to see, I want her to grow up and know that we can be leaders and that as women we are compassionate, strong, intelligent and ready for the role. 

Tune into the Disney Channel each week to follow Elena of Avalor’s latest royal adventures! Elena of Avalor airs on the Disney Channel on Fridays at 7:30pm ET/6:30 pm CT and 7:30 pm PT!

Jul 30, 2016

Knorr Finale: Rolled Tacos de Pollo

This is a sponsored post in collaboration with Mirum Shopper, however all opinions are my own.

During the month of July we have brought to you a Knorr takeover, sharing eight recipes that are pretty simple to make, yet super delicious. I hope that you all have enjoyed this takeover and that if nothing else our recipes and ideas have inspired you to get into the kitchen and come up with some new and fun dishes yourself. Mexican food is some of the best food and with a product like Knorr you can give that traditional sabor to so many dishes. I'm not what you call a "traditional" cook, yet I like to bring the flavors from my heritage to whatever I make and that's why I love this product.

We decided to close the month with a recipe inspired by one we found on the Knorr site for one of our favorites snacks, rolled tacos de pollo

These are made with some of that leftover chicken we always have in the fridge and don't know what to do with. Follow the recipe below to make your own easy Rolled Tacos de Pollo

 Rolled Tacos de Pollo
12 tacos ( 4 servings)
12 tortillas 
2 cups of shredded chicken
1 cube Knorr Caldo de Tomate Bouillon
1/4 cups hot water 
1/4 cup of oil

Shred about two cups of chicken. In a large sized pan add 2 tablespoons of oil and allow to heat for a few minutes, add chicken and let it start to heat. 

Grab 1/4 cups hot water and 1 cube  Knorr Caldo de Tomate Bouillon and stir to dissolve.  

Once the Knorr Caldo de Tomate Bouillon is dissolved pour into the pan and cook while stirring for about 5 minutes. The chicken is ready so now we will make the rolled tacos. 

Fill tortillas and roll putting them on a plate to the side to be ready for frying. Add the rest of the oil into same pan and allow to heat for about 2 minutes. Once oil is hot start frying the rolled tacos, turning steadily to avoid burning. 

To serve we like to chop up some quick onions, tomatoes and serrano chiles just for a quick salsa. Serve warm and top with sour cream, Mexican cheese and lettuce if you so please. 

Delicious and super flavorful! Knorr really is a star in the kitchen, giving everything great sabor

Find Knorr Caldo de Tomate Bouillon and the entire Knorr line at Walmart. 

For my family and I, food is life. This summer we've gotten together to enjoy good food, good drink and good moments and that is exactly what summer is about. How do you savor summer?