Friday, July 22, 2016

My son Michael


My kid Michael who is 2nd oldest is OBSESSED with animals! So basically anything he catches I kinda let him keep although now I am trying to get him to enjoy and let go :) He has caught probably a easy 10 snakes, which include black racers, pinewood, and ring neck.


He has had a turtle in his pocket while at school, come to find out it was a REAL turtle a baby alligator snapping turtle which guessing a bird had and dropped? I still have it to this day, it mummified itself. He has caught god knows how many frogs and turtles, we have kept a few of his turtles and they have gotten huge. Its pretty neat to watch all these animals grow.


His all time favorite animal has to be the frog! I swear it was his first word. He has had many of bullfrogs which we did have a set for 3 years before we decided they were getting to big and needed to go back into the wild, they were about the size of a softball easy.


He also likes to catch bugs, beetles, and lizards. We have caught a few many geckos. I learn when out with my son to make sure I drink fast or have something in which he can place whatever it is in something. He will try and sneak it in his hand and every so often it gets loose while I am driving! I have had a frog on the back of my head, around my feet and a cricket jump from the ceiling fan while wrapping gifts! I must say NOTHING at this point surprises me, and the animals and critters are getting bigger as he grows older.


Although he is still young I see him doing something with animals when he gets older, even if its living out on his own in nature he will always be around animals. I am good with that : )


Sunday, July 17, 2016

Johnson & Johnson to the Rescue!



Having a big family I often hear the words ouch, hurt, blood or I caught. So I always am in need of the basics like bandages, shampoo and more.


Johnson & Johnson is a family owned company which pretty much we all have one or more of their products in our homes. Each year just before school lets out I take my kids to the local Walmart, and have them pick out a pack each of their favorite Band-aids since there are so many fun characters to choose from. I also stock up on Neosporin, shampoo and much more.



I love that everything is at a fair price, and my kids enjoy getting their favorite characters ( which sometimes they fake a cut just to get a band-aid ) I also make sure to grab some water block band-aids, having a pool these come in handy as my kids seem to get most of their cuts by playing around the sides of the pool. I keep all their favorite picks of band-aids in Johnson & Johnson's Let's Go tote. It is a cute 9in x 6.25in x 2in, which is the perfect size to carry with me almost everywhere I go, so I am prepared for whatever my kids throw my way. You can purchase, your Oh Joy first aid bag here.

You can pick up Johnson & Johnson products at all stores, remember to stay safe this summer.




Disclosure: In order to facilitate a review, I received promotional materials and/or samples. All opinions and comments are my own.Photos or Reviews or were provided by client with authorization for use in this campaign. No additional compensation was received. Post may contain affiliate links. Please contact Casey@themeparkmamablog.com with any questions.

The New Colgate Optic White Toothbrush + Whitening Pen

A few years ago I wrote this post about my mom suffering from over sensitive teeth, and the newer Colgate   Sensitive Toothbrush with Built-In Sensitivity Relief Pen. This year Colgate took their product and tweaked it so more people would be able to enjoy the benefits of Colgate. 




Colgate has come out with the Colgate® Optic White® Toothbrush + Whitening Pen, which makes it easy to brush, whiten and go. How? The Colgate Optic White Toothbrush + Whitening Pen, is exactly how it sounds, you brush your teeth, twist the handle & out pops the whitening pen. It's easy as 1 2 3! Now everyone can get the benefits of whitening that they might had avoided because of having to purchase, carry, store, replace etc another item. I find it to be wonderful because, the Colgate Optic White Toothbrush + Whitening Pen is a great way to remember to change your toothbrush once the pen runs out or stops working it is time for a new toothbrush.  “Now you can get a #DesignerSmile with 5 shades whiter teeth* that starts working in 1 day!*   *For advertised results continue to use as directed for 3 weeks.”
See this amazing new combo in action in this quick commercial:




You can purchase the Colgate Optic White Toothbrush + Whitening Pen at your local retail store. 

Disclosure: In order to facilitate a review, I received promotional materials and/or samples. All opinions and comments are my own.Photos or Reviews or were provided by client with authorization for use in this campaign. No additional compensation was received. Post may contain affiliate links. Please contact Casey@themeparkmamablog.com with any questions.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Chick-fil-A Cow Appreciation Day, My Kids Birthday....what else!?!

Today at your local Chick-fil-A dress like a Cow and receive a free entree. You can wear a mask, complete outfit, shirt, however you feel you look like a cow :)  Here is a link for a cut out to make your own cow. Click here.


Also a Happy Birthday to my oldest son who turns 12 today. One more year and I have a teenager ahhhhh!


Oh and yesterday I was supposed to get a dog from the Animal Shelter and ended up getting a call they could cut his stuff on Thursday so we ended up with our 11th member of our house Bosco, he is a chocolate Lab/Retriever he is 9 months. He is huge and so far has been a good addition to the family :)


I say the 11 addition to the family because we have 5 kids 2 adults 2 cats and now 2 dogs.

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Summer with Crayola



I am here melting in Florida, and having to entertain 5 kids, what a better way then to put on some sun block and go paint the sidewalks rainbows! Crayola has a bunch of fun ways to help my kids have a great and enjoyable summer. Some examples which we used to create such masterpieces.


Neon 3D Chalk Set, this stuff is so cool and seriously has you looking like a weirdo which is all the more fun. I was a skeptic at first, like sure the paintings will just pop up, but if you follow the instructions and use the glasses you find yourself surrounded in your masterpiece. I was getting a little dizzy with some of my kids art work, but a very neat experience.



Neon Glitter Sidewalk Chalk, because who doesn't love bright colors. Sure you can make a "sun" but then there is a SUN :) with these amazing neon colors everything becomes that much more, well brighter!



We just finished painting our living room because our kids ( I hope ) are finally past the age of drawing, writing or whatever on the walls. The whole time the kids big to small wanted to help. Thankfully Crayola came to the rescue with Squeeze N' Paint Tool Set. The  Squeeze N' Paint Tool Set, allows for my kids to paint using tools which you would for painting the interior of a house but only with sidewalk paint. The 5 of them could now brush, squirt and roll their designs onto the sidewalk.



Who has a favorite Marvel or Disney character? How neat would it be if you were able to get that character in chalk. Crayola now has Licensed characters like Captain America, Hulk, Frozen and even Finding Dory (Disney's newest animation film)  which help you to create your own with the colors provided for each.


You can find all these and much more great summer products from Crayola at your local retail stores, and toy stores.

Disclosure: In order to facilitate a review, I received promotional materials and/or samples. All opinions and comments are my own.Photos or Reviews or were provided by client with authorization for use in this campaign. No additional compensation was received. Post may contain affiliate links. Please contact Casey@themeparkmamablog.com with any questions.


Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Growing Up in Central Florida

Again I was born 1983, in Kissimmee, FL. I lived off a dirt road, in a single wide trailer on my grandparents property with my parents. Growing up in Kissimmee, FL has been a adventure to say the least. I lived on the corner of 17-92 ( S.OBT, Or John Young depending on your GPS) and Pleasant Hill Rd.



In our front yard was a trailer park, which had a corner store. At age 8-9 the trailer park was gone and the corner store was sold. 17-92 was getting ripped up and made into a 4 lane road, big 100 year oak trees were being trashed to make way for more people.....whoooo :(  Then not to long after 17-92 became a 4 lane road they finally started on Pleasant Hill Rd, it was a deadly 2 lane road that at the age of 7 my dad had me bike with him all the way to Poinciana which was a smaller community with a small store and a few houses.

When Pleasant Hill Rd was becoming 4 lanes lost a lot of locals, they sold out and moved, lost a bunch of orange trees and cattle farms, to again make room for more people. Slowly the corner of Pleasant Hill Rd and 17-92 got built up, first a Eckard, Publix, Chevron, Citgo and McDonalds. Later on the tornado of 99? came through and took out some of the mini mall which had a Video King, VHS tapes were all over 17-92 and down Shingle Creek.

Now in the year 2016 the 4 corners of the intersection of Pleasant Hill Rd and 17-92 have Publix, Ross, Bealls, 2 Banks, 2 drug stores, 4 mini malls and much much more! Its crazy and a very busy intersection to the point you hear about a accident almost weekly.

I remember playing in the dirt of my dirt road and making ditches in the street so the bus would hit it like a speed bump :) and making mud pies, now everything is paved. I remember having all kinds of crazy animals in my yard, we would have ducks, rabbits, chickens, raccoons, opossums, and even emus that would get out from a farmers yard!



I also would go canoeing and swimming, yes! I would swim in shingle creek, which has many alligators, and the water was dark so you would not know if one was around or not, you just hoped that mother nature would protect you and they would leave you alone because they wish to be left alone. I remember swimming at Alexander Springs and a alligator swam right past us, thankfully it was only a 3-4ft little gator but if it wanted it could still do a lot of damage.

Growing up in Kissimmee, FL I had access to everything, oceans, theme parks, parks, lakes, everything! I have loved / hated growing up here. The benefits to growing up in Kissimmee, was we had/have Disney. When you live here you almost always have someone who can hook you up and get you in for free or cheap so you can enjoy a day. I was able to be around when Disney opened the parks MGM (Disney Hollywood Studios) and Animal Kingdom. Because Disney was so close, I would go there often, I even had my first job working there as a cook at Cosmic Rays which I think is called Starlight Cafe now or its the other way around but it was at Magic Kingdom by the race cars.

I would skip school and go to the parks, all of the parks. I had passes to almost everything and it wasn't until I was 18 did I realize how special Disney World was. My theme park was a huge place on lots and lots of land with much to do besides just the parks. The Disney Campground which is still a place I bring my own kids was my playground. They had River Country ( which I never got to go to) but they also had the Lagoon, it was open to the Disney resort guest to swim and they had it roped off in areas which you would stay and relax on the beach of Disney. They had trams that would take you to the beach area, and before my time well my remembering time they used to have a train which would take you to the beach. For sometime they did have a old train car that you could play in that was along a walk way in the Disney Campground.



My parents and I were with friends and my dad had left something in the car and we had rode our bikes in the campground so me and him rode back to the cars, in the campground there are 2 stores which one is by the beach and the other half way, its a mile from the parking lot to the beach. For some reason we made it to the second store and I did not wanna go the rest of the way to the parking lot I was hot and tired so my dad was like well go back on your own, again I was 7 .  He ended up going to the car and I proceeded by myself to go back to the beach, my dad knew I was able to do so and I was in no fear of anything because again it was my backyard.

I have had sooooooo many memories of the Disney Campground and my kids as well as some of there friends have also had great memories there. I know that at Disney even though I have lived my whole life in central FL near water were you see alligators daily saw my biggest one at Disney. I heard of the event which just happened on June 14th with the little boy and my heart sunk. My kids and myself have been along that water oh so many times and although there are alligators never once think they will come that close to sore with how busy everything is. I heard and still hear many blaming the parents or Disney and the reality is it is NO ONES FAULT. It was 100% a freak thing that happened. I think honestly because of how the child was found that it was a gator thinking it was a duck. The only ones to blame if any are those who feed the gators which I am part of that group, you see something that is not a normal everyday thing and for some reason we as humans wanna feed it because we wanna see it closer and take in how amazing it is to be this close to this animal.



Gators, snakes, boars are animals which are extremely common in central FL and are becoming more common to see because humans are moving in and moving them to places which sadly end up being in our backyard. My dad has always loved nature and so I was almost every weekend going on some kind of hike in the woods, we would come across rattle snakes and cotton mouths more then I can count on my hands but we would respect them and they would stay away from us. Now when going on hikes with my kids I am always carrying a large knife in case I come across a boar, they are what scare me here. Just in the last week the neighborhood less then 2 miles from me has had black bears in their trash! I never ever have heard of a bear siting close to me most were more north FL.

I also have had a chance to watch millions of space shuttles go off at the Kennedy Space Center, I remember on was a night launch which those were the best because you could really see them but we had traveled over to the beach and I watched a giant ball of light fly over my head! Then I remember the one which blew up with the teacher, what is crazy is I was only 2 but I guess because of how my mom was I remember it because we were watching it and then you saw like a puff of smoke and my mom was like that is not normal I think something has happened and it did it was on the news for some time and many were sad. I also remember the other which fell apart, I was asleep and about 16? when my mom woke me up and was like get up the space shuttle is missing and the parts have to fall some place. So yeah I got to live through those here as well.

Then of course you have the Pulse shooting which was a act of terrorist, and effected many in Orlando, we had just drove down Orange Ave on Saturday a week or so after it had happened and everyone in Orlando and surrounding has its way of tribute to what has happened. I will always hate the heat of Fl but it is home and I am one of very few who are from the beginning and still here.