Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Celebrating 100 Years of Disney on Ice Ottawa Style!

Mickey, Minnie and I have a close relationship. Each year they come to visit my children and I in Ottawa. Well, maybe they come to see all the Disney fans in Ottawa, but we like to think we have something to do with it. 

This year Disney On Ice is celebrating 100 Years of Magic! 

"Grab your Mickey ears and get ready for the ultimate Disney experience at Disney On Ice celebrates 100 Years of Magic! Be charmed by a cast of over 50, with Mouse-ter of Ceremonies Mickey Mouse, sweetheart Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy and Disney Princesses including Cinderella, Rapunzel, Ariel, Snow White and Tiana. Relive the magic of Disney’s Frozen with Anna, Elsa and the hilarious Olaf as they discover that true love is the greatest magic of all. Sing-along to over 30 unforgettable songs including “Let It Go,” “You’ve Got a Friend in Me,” and “Hakuna Matata.” Exciting moments from Disney Pixar’s Toy Story, Finding Nemo, Disney’s The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin and more will leave the whole family with memories to last a lifetime. Show off your moves at the Disney Magic of Healthy Living dance-along pre-show inspired by the Disney Healthy Living commitment as the celebration of the century skates into your hometown!"

If you have never been to a Disney on Ice show, you should check out on Disney on Ice's Facebook page on follow along on Twitter @DisneyOnIce. Both social media channels have pictures, updates and all of the latest information for Disney on Ice fans. 

Disney on Ice performances will take place at the Canadian Tire Centre located in Kanata. There are performances in both English & French. Tickets for all the performances can be purchased here.

Schedule for Disney on Ice at The Canadian Tire Centre
February 24, 2016 7:00 p.m.
February 25, 2016 10:30 a.m. 7:00 p.m.
February 26, 2016 7:00 p.m.
February 27, 2016 11:00 a.m. 3:00 p.m. 7:00 p.m.
February 28, 2016 11:00 a.m. 3:00 p.m. (in French) 
The kids and I have not missed a performance in 6 years and we are excited to share the upcoming performance with one lucky Ottawa & area fan. I have a family four pack of 4 tickets to the opening night performance of Disney on Ice: 100 Years of Magic to give away entry using the entry tool below. 

Good luck, I cannot wait to see you there. We will be the family wearing the Mickey & Minnie Mouse ears! 

I am a Disney On Ice Insider, I received perks in exchange for this post. All opinions are my own. 

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Collaborating with Dragons

During the cold winter evenings, once the homework is done, evening athletic activities are complete and school lunches have been packed Beckett and I share some one on one time.

We usually share a fun book or two, then Beckett picks a Netflix video to watch while we snuggle up in bed together. It is usually during these quiet moments that I find out tidbits about the day, both the good and the bad.

For Beckett, Grade 2 has brought more of an awareness of the actions of others. He often, during the quiet moments tells me about unkind words or actions from others that have shaped his day. We were watching DreamWorks Animation’s Dragons: Race to the Edge,  Episode 4, When Darkness Falls. In this episode, Hiccup and the Dragon Riders have to collaborate and create the perfect outpost. However, the Dragon Riders have to overcome trials, fire breathing dragons and work as a team to create an outpost that everyone can call their own.

After the episode, Beckett explained that during recess he and his buddies can't play nicely together. They fight about what game to play, who will play what position and who will be the referee. Beckett, said he feels like Hiccup and tries to get everyone to decide and play together nicely, but it doesn't work all the time. But he said just like Hiccup kept trying, he will keep trying.

I'm happy to say that season 2 of DreamWorks Animation’s Dragons: Race to the Edge launched on January 16th, 2016. Beckett and I are ready to see how the Dragon Riders work together in the next season.

Childhood Cartoon Throwback

During my primary school years the Care Bears debuted on our three channel television set. I loved Share-Bear, he was never afraid to share with others. Soon after the Care Bear Cousins & Baby Bears came along and made the Care Bear family complete. I 'might' have been given my nickname of "Bear" from Share-Bear, get it Sherrie ...Share-Bear and it stuck.

Netflix Canada recently launched  Care Bears & Cousins which gave me the perfect opportunity to introduce them to one of my favourite cartoons from my childhood. 

Andie mentioned that she liked they way they solved problems, instead of fighting they used the power from their hearts to defeat the villain.

Netflix also number of must see throwback series to share with your family and possibly reminisce about your own youthful television viewing habits. 

Happy #TBT Viewing ! 

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

There is a quirky new comedy from Netflix called Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. At first I wasn't sure whether to cringe or laugh at the off the wall comedy. The premise is unique, a Mole woman who was in a cult and kept underground for years relocates to New York City and adventure ensues. 

I connect with Kimmy, the main character, on several levels. No, I was not held against my will in an underground bomb shelter however I did grow up in a small hamlet of 700 people with no stop light. However, when my high school field hockey team would play against a city high school team they would take shots at our "country style" or farmer's tans. I felt as if the "city kids" knew everything about clothes, fashion and music and I was playing catch up. 

Kimmy sees the bright side of everything when no ones else does and she has the uncanny ability to laugh at herself while trying to find a solution to the issue at hand. I find myself in most situations doing to the same thing. Professionally and personally I try to see the good in the situation or find a creative solution. Kimmy is put in unbelievably funny social situations that made me literally laugh at loud. Tina Fey and Robert Cardlock's creative minds have created a binge worthy series, bravo! I cannot wait to watch the next season

This is the first Netflix series that I binge watched twice.  I cannot wait for April 15, 2016 when Season 2 begins streaming. 

I am a proud Netflix #streamteam member and have received perks for my participation, the opinions expressed are my own.

Unique Families

Families come in all shapes and sizes and each one looks different from the next. Each family has it's quirks and nuances that makes it perfectly unique.  Our family consists of 5 humans, 5 furry pets, grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins, and friends who are like family. 
Our family home with a population of 10 is loud, fur-filled and constantly in motion. The amount of time we actually spend inside the home is small, most of our days and evenings are filled with activities, athletics and events. 

The time we spend in the house together in our favourite. According the to the KT, she loves it when we bake together, Andie's favourite time is when we are crafting together. Beckett struggled to answer this question. So he decided to draw us. 

Netflix has a variety of unique families streaming daily.

For the preschool bunch:
1. Curious George
2. Stellaluna
3. Lily's Driftwood Bay
4. Pound Puppies: "The Yipper Caper"
5. Veggie Tales: "Pa Grape's Son / Larry's Cardboard  Thumb"
6. Baby Jake
For the tween/teen group:
1. Alvin and the Chipmunks Meet the Wolfman
2. Mr. Peabody & Sherman
3. Despicable Me
4. Kung Fu Panda
5. Full House
6. Yours Mine and Ours

For the adult viewers, I highly recommend Grace and Frankie. This series made me laugh, out loud often.

"Grace and Frankie, Netflix's new funny and fearless original comedy featuring Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Martin Sheen and Sam Waterston, is a perfect example of how today’s families can shift, rearrange and blend in unexpected ways. When Grace and Frankie’s husbands leave them after 40 years of marriage—to be with each other—the women find themselves facing a change they never expected. They shift their perspective to get through it together, with the support of their new blended family and, of course, a sense of humour."

Happy viewing!

Christmas Traditions

Christmas holidays mean a break from the regular school routines. We sleep in, stay in our pajamas, play board games, bake and watch Christmas movies. 

This year we baked for ourselves and for our cookie exchange at school. I made 10 dozen peanut butter fudge balls for our exchange, in return we received gingerbread cookies, rum fudge, shortbread cookies and chocolate fudge clusters. For our own Christmas baking stockpile we made several different cookies including snowflake surprises, 

many, many snowflake surprises! 

There are several Christmas movies that are a tradition in our home, however we want to look for some new movies to watch this holiday season. Beckett picked, DreamWorks Happy Holidays from Madagascar, to watch. Aside from the excellent animation this selection introduced Beckett to other holidays that are celebrated by Melvin, Gloria, Marty and the Penguins. It brought up some excellent questions about who celebrates what holiday and why. 

We also created Gingerbread houses without local community members. It was an opportunity to share the holidays with friends and express our creative decorating side. 

After we returned home from Gingerbread house decorating, the girls decided that they wanted to watch The Grinch, with Jim Carrey. Several Christmas holidays ago, we went to Universal Studios and had breakfast with the Grinch. 

Every time we see the movie we are reminded about the fantastic family time that we had during our Florida adventure. 

This was the scene on Christmas morning before the kids, pets and my husband made their way downstairs to open gifts. Now I want to give you a gift! 

Thanks to the good people at Netflix I am giving away two 6 month Netflix subscriptions to two lucky readers. 

To enter tell me your favourite holiday movie, simple right? I will email the winners in January 2016. Good luck and yes, you can enter everyday! 

Little White Lies

Every so often, I am reminded of the white lies we tell. For the most part , it is to save the feelings of others, but still a lie is a lie. My girls and I were watching H20 a series about teenagers who are actually mermaids. They have the unfortunate fate of turning into mermaids the moment they touch water. The mermaids have been some very interesting situations were lying to keep their secret was the only option they had. Andie expressed concern that the girls in the show were lying to everyone about being mermaids. We were able to talk about why telling a lie might be the best choice in some situations, but for the most part honesty is the best policy. 

My girls, now both tweens have also enjoy these other titles that deal with lying: 
  1. Monster High: Frights, Camera, Action!
  2. H2O: Just Add Water
  3. Mean Girls
  4. iCarly: S1, E12: iPromise not to Tell
I have told my children, white lies. Like the Easter Bunny poops jelly beans when we all know they come from magical jelly bean chickens. One afternoon, I heard Beckett tell a friend that he too wished he had all of the Chuck the Truck vehicles from the Netflix series. The two boys went on to play for the rest of the afternoon with Lego and a couple of episodes of Chuck the Truck. At the end of the play date, I asked Beckett why he lied to his friend about not having the vehicles. He told me he didn't want to make his friend feel bad, because his friend did not have a single Chuck the Truck character. We decided to fix this situation and gave Beckett's playmate several of the vehicles at  his next birthday party. 

There are many titles that deal with lying for primary aged children including: 

  1. Super Why!: S1,E15: Humpty Dumpty and Other Fairytale Adventures: Pinocchio
  2. Curious George: S1, E19: Truth about George Burger
  3. Clifford the Big Red Dog: S1, E26: The Kibble Crook
  4. The Adventures of Chuck & Friends: S1, E9: The Pothole / Chuck’s Perfect Plans

When adults tell big lies they get into trouble, big trouble. My favourite lying movie by far is Liar, Liar. I am not sure if it is Jim Carrey's comedic style, or the epic courtroom scene that make this a family favourite, but we love it. 

Netflix offers many lie filled selections for your viewing pleasure including: 
  1. Bloodline
  2. Just Go With It
  3. Liar, Liar
  4. Pretty Little Liar
Overall, we instill the importance of telling the truth to our kids. However, watching these shows makes them realize the mishaps that can happen when we don't tell the truth. Excellent lessons for all of us to learn!