Schlitterbahn Waterpark and Resort – South Padre Island Review & #Giveaway #SPI #BahnLove

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My family and I were gifted park tickets to facilitate this review. All opinions are our own. 

It’s the 15 year anniversary of the opening of the Schlitterbahn South Padre Island Waterpark! Isn’t that AWESOME!? It was built-in 2001, and this park is home to the Transportainment River system that is designed to maximize time in the water and eliminate lines. This river system connects eight attractions that feature rapids, chutes, and gentle currents. It really keeps the park continually moving along the river. Schlitterbahn truly believes that when you come to the beach, you should just be able to sit back and enjoy your tube ride while you tan.

To celebrate this 15th year Anniversary Schlitterbahn is waiving their venue fees for Quincaneras this year! Amazing right!?

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In honor of the 15th anniversary we took a trip to Schlitterbahn in South Padre Island to experience it ourselves. And lucky for us this trip landed on our sweet Sadie’s 7th Birthday. It was a surprise trip for the kids and they LOVED it!

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I have learned so much experiencing it first hand. I can’t wait to share all my tips and tricks to help you and your family have the best experience possible.

I love saving money, on everything and a trip to a water park can be pricey or you can choose to be frugal. Click here to see ticket pricing. And if you had your first day in the park and decide maybe a second is worth it-because there is so much more you want to do take advantage of the added savings! Whenever you have the receipt or the wristband, the prices are $27.99 for an adult and $22 for a child.

Get a group together to get the group rate. This requires a group of 15 or more.

Be sure to check the weather for the day you are going. Also check the park calendar (online or by calling) and make sure there is no big event happening on that day or it will be super crowded and lines will be longer than normal. Click here for dress code.

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Plan to arrive early at least 30 minutes before the park opens (10 am here at SPI), for good parking and a good spot to picnic. There are many great free places around the park to picnic. When you first walk in there are umbrella tables. Towards the back there are wooden picnic tables under the palm trees. And if you have little ones a table with shade by Sand Castle Cove or the Lily Pad is a must! Also when planning on being there all day don’t be afraid to let your little ones nap. A quite break will energize them for more happy play later.

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Sand Castle Cove

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The back of park where the picnic tables are located.

Don’t forget sun hats, towels, and cheap sunglasses it is really bright. I wear prescription glasses and almost lost them a few times from overhead spraying so secure them with a cord.

Of course at a water park you need sunscreen but you also need to apply it at home to give it time to fully dry  before hitting the water. Lesson learned the hard way we all are a little sun burned. Another tip is to get the kids long sleeve water shirts trust me if you don’t want to track them down to reapply sunscreen and let it dry they need these! Also make sure to have water shoes the cement does get really hot. 

Another thing we did to save money was pack our lunch, water, and drinks. YES! You can bring in food and drinks. No glass or alcohol. We packed two ice chests one with drinks and the other with food. They both fit perfectly in our wagon to make walking from the parking lot with little ones easier.

Check out my Pinterest board for packing if you don’t want to stick to simple sandwiches. The pepperoni pasta salad is a kids pleaser. Next time I will individually package everyone’s portions so it is just easier when we are at the park. Don’t worry there are plenty of trash cans. Next time I might even wrap some ribs in foil the sun will keep them warm while we play! Click here to find more great packing tips from the Schlitterbahn blog.

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We actually brought in cupcakes, balloons, and a pretty plastic tablecloth since it was Sadie’s Birthday. It was really cute and I really recommend a tablecloth. The cupcakes melted in the heat-that was a bad idea.

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One of the cooler cabanas!

You can also choose to head to the park without a worry over arriving early for a shaded area by renting a cabana and leave the ice chest at home because you can get catering straight to your cabana. Another dinning option especially for teens is giving them splash cash. Here are some of the dinning options and prices you will find in the park.

The restrooms are located at the front of the park along with a shower area. There is also a small two stall restroom on Cabana Island.

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This park is known for Rio Adventura, the parks river transportation system from this river you can access the Storm Chaser, Sea Blaster, Pirate’s Plunge, Agua Blanca Tube Chute, and Gale Force. All from your inner tube! They even offer double tubes, and double tubes with a hole on one side and a seat for smaller children on the other.

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We all enjoyed riding on the tubes in Rio Adventura. It took a while to find two tubes with seats for Ezra and Dad and Sadie and Caydence, but once we did we just floated around the whole park 4 times, which took up most of our morning. They loved it so much! At first I was little terrified for the girls to go alone, but me being on a single tube made it easier to paddle towards them.

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One of our favorite rides!

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Ezra’s favorite area!

Squid Row has the softest flooring and was the best place for Ezra while he was warming up to the park.

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The girls enjoyed it too!

  Click here to see all the attractions Schlitterbahn South Padre Island has to offer.

See the park map here to help you plan.

By the time we were done the little ones were due for a nap and Sadie was super energized then fell fast asleep on the drive back home. We had a wonderful, fun-filled day or in Sadie’s words, “It was the BEST BIRTHDAY EVER!”

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I hope this post inspires you to plan a Schlitteriffic Day for your family!

Click here to enter to WIN 2 TICKETS to SCHLITTERBAHN SPI

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Building the perfect pillow fort with Pop Secret #PopSecertForts

Today’s post is sponsored by Pop Secret, but my love for their popcorn is all my own!

Pop Secret #PopSecretFort

Popcorn in our house is synonyms with fun! We have popcorn on movie night every Friday! Of course there is a huge mess to clean up afterwards, but the memories and fun make it all worth it!

Pop Secret #PopSecretForts

That innocent looking little boy to the left well he thinks he is Micheal Jordan! He has to have the bag and no one else can touch it! This also makes him the refill guy, but he isn’t your average refill guy-oh no-in true Micheal Jordan fashion he must toss the popcorn into his sister’s bowls.

Tonight we made movie night even more special, we crafted a pillow fort! We had so much fun making this fort! Now to have the perfect pillow fort you must lay a blanket down first Sadie said because then all you have to do is pick up the blanket and the mess is gone, then pillows which mini Mike loved throwing off the bed, then you need a roof according to Caydence all great pillow forts have a roof in case it rains….Popcorn!

#PopSecretForts

We really enjoyed our Pop Secret Popcorn and pillow fort and hope you spend sometime creating your own with your family. Pop Secret knows that fun, like popcorn, is better when it’s shared. Send Pop Secret your pillow fort stories and pictures on Facebook. You can upload them right to the Pop Secret timeline and tag them #PopSecretForts. They might just share a little something back!”

Be sure to download your $1 off coupon for your #PopSecretForts snack to enjoy with your kids for your very own movie night!

A New Way to Party – Personalized Plates from Birthday Express!

**This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links

Birthday Express Personalized Plates

Birthday Express has done it again with their newest arrival, personalized plates! You can now upload any photo you would like and design a customized party plate for any occasion, from birthdays to graduations, anniversaries to everyday gatherings. These plates will take your party from good to great, by adding a personal touch never before seen!

At just $9.99 per set of 8 plates, this is a fun and affordable way to bring life to your party, quite literally! Check out the personalized plates I created of Cay! I know she will LOVE these!!

personalized plates

Don’t forget to check out other personalized party supplies like party banners, centerpieces, and invitations at BirthdayExpress.com!

Hot Holiday Toy Alert!! LeapTV Review!!

I was sent this product in return for an honest review. LeapTV Review

Have you heard of the new LeapTV gaming system? It is truly amazing! We were lucky enough to be able to review it this holiday season and we are so thankful! This new gaming system is everything I have ever wanted in a gaming system and I can’t wait to share it with you!

When it arrived at the door the children and I were CRAZY excited! They couldn’t wait to set it up and test it out! The set up was super easy well all except moving the TV to plug it in. I was able to put in each of the kids names, birth dates, and grade level so they would each have their own profile. They were each able to pick a profile picture which they were so proud to do! Once we go it start the fun and learning began! They played for a good two hours until dinner time! I was so amazed at all the different subjects they games helped them practice.

My favorite part of this gaming system is that they are not just all sitting around playing but up having fun and learning. Oh and the best part is once they pick a game it lets the kids know who’s turn it is and every time it switches players it caters to that player age and grade level so for example when it’s my preschoolers turn it ask her to add 2+3, when my kindergartener turn it asks her what’s 8+7, and when it’s my nephew’s turn, who is in 2nd grade, it will ask him what 15+30. This whole system just blows me away-everything is just so awesome!

 

Hamster High Five on the new #LeapTV Dance and Learn game

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We are playing the new LeapTV and it's awesome!! #leaptv

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My LeapTV Praises:

  • 3 ways to play so they can not possibly get board! Body motion (the camera puts them in the TV and they love it!), classic control (especially made with little hands in mind), and pointer play (the control transforms into a pointer!). LeapTV2
  • Specifically for young children with age-appropriate games and voice navigation to help the little ones.
  • Reinforces learning through movement (kids wiggle, jump, point, and swipe to play) They get to exercise while they play!!
  • Games adapt to your child the games automatically level up as your child progresses in proficiency awesome right!
  • It’s small and doesn’t take up much space on my tv console. Plus it has a clip that can attach the camera onto the TV so the really little ones don’t get a hold of it!

We love the new LeapTV gaming system and it makes the perfect educational game for the child in your life!

LeapTV

Thank you so much LeapFrog for allowing us to test this awesome toy!

XOut Review #MC #sponsored

I participated in an Influencer Activation Program on behalf of Influence-Central for X Out. I received samples of X Out to facilitate my review and a thank you item for participating.

X out

Hi! You get to meet a very special person today, my little brother, Maliq! He is in High School and dealing with the stress of finals right now..uhh don’t you remember that?! Finals, on top of starting a new after school job, and homework, plus track practice. Well I asked him to please partner with me and help review a new acne line called X Out from the makers of Proactiv, and he agreed!

X Out is a unique one-­step Wash-In Treatment that washes powerful breakout fighting medicine into pores to help kill the bacteria that causes pimples while moisturizing and helping to protect the skin. Isn’t that amazing on top of washing out all the bad, this product is washing in powerful medicine to help combat pimples.

X Out was designed to be used by itself– no other steps are needed in order to fit into a teenagers’ busy daily life. YES! This is perfect even for my busy life, but we all know how hormonally challenged teens are already on top of their social lives, their friends, and school of course-they are just so busy!

The X Out Wash–In Treatments contains the proven acne fighting power of 8.5% benzoyl peroxide along with smooth beads to help exfoliate dead skin cells and a unique moisturizing complex designed to help protect and soothe the skin. I love that it contains the smoothing beads because I know in my own routine that it is a very important step to keeping my skin healthy. I am happy that it is free of parabens and sulfates and it is dermatologist approved for all skin types.

Maliq really enjoyed using this product and it fits right in with his BUSY & very ACTIVE teen life because it’s one simple step. Acne is embarrassing to say the least and such a headache, he shouldn’t have to worry about. After using the product for 6 weeks he has really seen a big change in the texture of his skin that he really likes. He also as he stated in the video noticed when he does get a break out it is not as bad and doesn’t take as long as before to clear up. Maliq loves that X out is so easy to fit into his shower routine and loves the easy of one step and he’s done!

Before after

Is acne a problem for your teen or preteen? What does your teen use to treat acne? (Answer in the comment section below.)

You can find more information about X Out below:

X Out Website: http://www.xout.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/XOut

Twitter: https://twitter.com/xoutbreakouts

The Amazing Zhus Review #TheAmazingZhus #Sponsored

This post is part of a sponsored campaign with Cepia LLC and MomSelect. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

The Amazing Zhus ReviewDo you recall the Zhu Zhu pet craze a while back well they are back this year and better than ever with the Amazing Zhus!  When I learned we were going to review these cool toys I think I was more excited than the kids!  The night they arrived I had to put them up just so I wasn’t tempted to play with them before the kids had a chance too. When we finally were able to review them it was so much fun! We first opened Madame Zhu, and she came with a magic wand and three magicians cards. She magically follows the wand which the kids loved! She also was able to “read” the cards without seeing them and perform what the card was showing-so cool! We loved the ballerina card!

Madame Zhu Review

The Amazing Zhus Magician Cards are a blast! #TheAmazingZhus #GreatGift #Somuchfun #lovethese

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Next we opened the Magicians’ Shell Game which is an extra trick you can buy that goes with your Amazing Zhu pet. I loved that it comes with batteries. It was so quick and easy to learn this trick and watching Madame Zhu perform it was so much fun for the kids and me too.

The Magicians Shell Game

The Amazing Madame Zhu performing the magicians Shell Game!! #TheAmazingZhus #HotToy #Kidwanted #Momapproved

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We saved the best stunt for last the High Dive! This toy was super quick to put together out of the box-no screw drivers needed and no batteries either. As soon as we got it together everyone wanted a turn to try it. As soon as Caydence learned how to place Madame Zhu on the track she volunteered to make the review video. Here she is!

The Amazing Zhus High Dive is our new favorite toy #TheAmazingZhus #sponsored

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There are 6 amazing pets available: The Great Zhu, Madame Zhu, Dynamo, Abra, Piccadilly and The Great Kardini. Which is great because then you can get each kid a different one and that will end the fights over whos is who. Unlike the Zhu Zhu pets the Amazing Zhus are not fuzzy, but they are still so adorable. They still make lots of fun noises and have 3 operation buttons and 3 modes. And if you get tired of the little Zhu running around the house making noise no worries it’s so easy to switch off! In the press of a button the noise is gone-don’t you wish your kids had that button too!? Or is it just me? Each Amazing Zhu also comes with batteries!!! So awesome-right? Countless times I have gotten my kids a gift and then forgot the batteries.

There are also many amazing accessories to help your children create their own special, unique performances: Magician Shell Game, High Dive, Circus Ball, High Wire, Disappearing Box Trick, Cereal Box, Tomato Can and Train Car Carriers. You can find all the Amazing Zhu toys at Walmart.

You can view additional videos here.

Links to follow:

The Amazing Zhus Website
-The Amazing Zhus Facebook
-The Amazing Zhus Twitter

Have you heard about The Amazing Zhus? What do you think would be your children’s favorite Amazing Zhu pet, trick or stunt?

Virgin Mobile Custom-Why it’s our top pick for our preteens. #MC #VirginMobileMom #Sponsored

I participated in an Influencer Activation Program on behalf of Influence-Central for Virgin Mobile. I received a sample device to facilitate my review and a thank you item for participating.

Virgin Mobile Custom Review

Now that the children are older and doing after school activities we are learning we cannot be everywhere with them all-all the time. Therefore we are going to have to trust our children’s safety to their coaches and leaders in football, gymnastics, girl scouts, and cheerleading-which is hard to do. Giving our kids their own cell phones is something we have been contemplating for a while because of this issue. While we love the peace of mind it can provide we are also aware of the negative effects of social media and cyber bullying.  Also the responsibility of keeping within the limits of a cell phone plan and them not being able to handle that responsibility resulting in us paying outrageous bills is scary. Thankfully, there’s a great cell phone option that was designed specifically with families in mind.

Virgin Mobile Custom is a fully-customizable cell phone plan that allows you to create the perfect plan for your families budget. Plus is has the BEST parental controls-I am serious the BEST. This plan, offered by Virgin Mobile USA, allows us to activate up to five lines, for as little as $6.98 per line per month, all while controlling the exact amount of data and minutes provided. It get’s better if the kids go over and you need to control that real quick you can add more time and only allow them to use it to call who you say. You can add more talk, text, and data at anytime.

Virgin Mobile Infographic

ZTE EMBLEM Virgin Mobile Review

I received the ZTE Emblem and it is the perfect size for our preteen since her birthday is just around the corner we are giving this to her and we are buying one for her brother as well. It comes preloaded with all her favorite apps and she can also download ones we approve. The setup was super easy-I could do it without help. If you’re thinking about switching to Virgin Mobile you can keep your old phone number or select to get an new one in your zip code. There are no long term contracts, and you only pay for the services you use. You can select between various different usage options for talk, text, and data. It will also calculate for you how much your selection will cost you monthly. You can pay each month with a debit or credit card or select to buy a Top-Up card and enter the pin to apply the amount to your balance.

Virgin Mobile Custom

Virgin Mobile Custom is the perfect first phone for your preteen or teenager because they can’t go over the amount of talk, text, and data you have purchased, therefore it’s solely their responsibility to use it wisely. The parental controls you set up you can monitor from any phone! You can adjust the specific days and hours when your teen is able to use his or her phone. The service is also nationwide and I haven’t had a call dropped since I have been using it.

Virgin Mobile Review

I fully recommend this service for all parents considering looking into a cell phone plan for their preteens or teens.

A big thanks goes out to Virgin Mobile for allowing us to try this amazing phone! Virgin Mobile Custom phones can be found at your local Walmart in fact we are heading their to pick up another one now. To learn more about Virgin Mobile you can find them on YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter.

At what age did or will your kids get a cell phone? Have you heard of Virgin Mobile Custom?

Outfit Your Family for Halloween with Costume Express – Save 20%

**This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links

Costume Express Halloween Costumes

Do you find yourself driving all over town, from store to store, just to find the perfect costumes to outfit your family in for Halloween? If so, now is the time to stop that tradition! Save yourself time and money and check out Costume Express.

Costume Express specializes in outfitting your entire family for Halloween. With thousands of costumes and accessories to choose from, you’re sure to find what you’re looking for. The most sought-after costumes (Frozen, Batman, Maleficent, TMNT) – are all available for purchase at Costume Express and are quickly shipped right to your front door.

Get 20% off all orders at Costume Express when you shop by October 25th! Just enter coupon codeSAVETWENTY at checkout. Halloween just got a little less scary, right?

Costume Express Halloween Costumes    Costume Express Halloween Costumes

Costume Express Halloween Costumes    Costume Express Halloween Costumes

 

#DropYourPants for #Underwareness with Depend

Many thanks to Depend for sponsoring today’s story and encouraging people to #dropyourpants for #underwareness.

#DropYourPants for  #Underwareness with Depends

If you would have told me 6 years ago, I would have 2 step children and 3 children of my own and have to deal with incontinence after birth (in other words, leaking…yep, leaking) I wouldn’t believe you. I would have said that only happens to old people. Well guess what I ain’t old and it happened! Birth and pregnancy can do many things to your body and incontinence is one of them. I remember the first two weeks after I had Ezra, my third child, how bad it was. When I would laugh till it hurt or sneeze, or cough unexpectedly. I was so embarrassed, I kept thinking what is wrong with my body this should not be happening. When in reality it is so normal and happens to everyone, except no one ever talks about it. I wish I had the Depend Underwear with Fit-Flex protection they would have made life so much easier! My doctor recommended kegel exercises as much as possible and discreet products like Depend in the mean time. Kegels are not something you can really remember to do everyday, but they really do help.  Depend is offering a free sample below for all of my readers. Depend is on a mission to help being awareness to this issue and they have an awesome way you can help, find out more below.

 Depend-Silhouette-Briefs-for-Womer

As you know now leakage can happen to anyone and Depend provides a variety of discreet products that help people regain their freedom and get their lives back, including:

  • Depend Real Fit for Men and Silhouette for Women briefs: Look, fit and feel like real underwear and feature a cloth-like fabric for a sleek, ultra-smooth fit.
  • Depend Underwear with Fit-Flex protection: Features more Lycra stands for a smooth and comfortable close-to-the-body fit.

Depend

Depend will donate $1, up to $3 million, over the next three years to charities that advance the research, education and awareness of bladder leakage for:

  • Every pant drop, photo and video shared Using #Underwareness and #DropYourPants
  • Every personal video made about what Underwareness means to you that is uploaded to YouTube and tagged #Underwareness and #DropYourPants

You can claim your free samples today by visiting the Depend and clicking on the “Get a Sample” button located at the top right-hand side of the screen. Then, select which sample you would like to receive and wait for them to arrive.

A Frozen Birthday Party for a Frozen Queen

 

 This post contains affiliate links which means once you click a link if you make a purchase my family and I will receive a percentage of your purchase. We thank you in advance for your support. Frozen Birthday Party

For those of you who have been around for a while, you know I like throwing the kids birthday parties at home with family because I really enjoy the baking and decorating that goes into making their day special. The last party was for a special girl who is a BIG fan of Frozen and an aspiring Elsa wana be! She was dead set on a Frozen party from the minute we came out of the movie theater after watching it for the first time. So naturally I went to work planning on Pinterest and had tons of ideas pinned! Below are all the ideas that made the final cut and helped make her day special.

Frozen Party3

What’s a party without balloons and streamers? She loves balloons so I knew we needed balloons! I used the balloons and streamers to help decorate and give that birthday party feel when you walk into the house. I also used this awesome Elsa and Ana Stand Up from Birthday Express as well. This stand up was such a big hit at the party as you will see later. Most of these party supplies came from Birthday Express because they have a great selection of supplies as well as great coupon codes. Their delivery was also right on schedule and they helped make our party a memorable day.

Frozen Party2

Frozen Party1

If you have seen my previous parties I love making the dipped pretzel rods which are so easy and dipped marshmallows. The best part is you can customized them to fit any party theme. Those cute mugs my mom found at the Disney Store and they really tie the treats into the theme. I ordered this awesome Party Fountain from Amazon for our party. This fountain added a magical feel and elegance to the party. All the kids enjoyed filling their own cups and watching the juice flow threw.

Frozen Birthday Cake

 The idea for the cake came from Pinterest and I just loved making it! I used a blue velvet cake on the inside and a homemade vanilla buttercream for the icing. I made a blue rock candy for the icicles and for the mountains I used the left over candy melts from the pretzels. The figures came from the Disney Store.

Frozen Party

Here was another treat and alternate drink station. More pretzels and marshmallow pops because they do disappear quickly. I also served that Froze Ice (blue ice candy), Olaf noses (carrots), and Olaf arms (pretzel sticks). I also make snowflake sugar cookies topped with icing and a blue covered chocolate candy which also were gone in the blink of an eye. Those cute crown lollipops you see displayed came from the amazing Birthday Express.

Frozen Birthday Photo Opp

The stand up was a real hit at the party. Everyone loved getting their picture taken with Elsa and Ana-Ahem some more than others as you can see below.

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Caydence’s costume and wig, came from Birthday Express and her Frozen Elsa’s Jewelry Set came from Amazon. She LOVES playing dress up and singing and dancing on the ottoman. I even did her make up like Elsa for her special day.

Frozen Queen

It was such a perfect day for our little Frozen Queen! Thank you so much to ALL our family and friends who joined us in helping make her day amazing. Thank you so much to Birthday Express for the 50% off review code and Hallmark for the invites, birthday card, and thank you cards.

You can find all the Frozen birthday party supplies I used here at Birthday Express. 

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