Sunday, December 1, 2013


"Best day ever!" That's what Monkey girl said right after we watched Frozen. I will readily admit that the whole family loved it. You can definitely tell it's from the same people who did Tangled (also a movie we loved, hence the quote), but with a much more unique story.

Elsa and Anna are sisters. Elsa, however, has the ability to cast frozen spells with her hands. To hide it from their kingdom (especially after she accidentally hurts her little sister, Anna), her parents advise her to wear gloves and stay secluded in her room, away from the eyes of everyone including Anna. An unfortunate accident, leads Elsa being crowned ruler of the kingdom and her inability to control her power is what sets off the main part of the story.

Other much loved characters include, Olaf, the snowman Elsa first creates for amusement when she and Anna are still kids. Kristoff, the ice trader, and Sven, Kristoff's reindeer companion.

Hop on over to their Facebook page as well for more information. Plus they have instructions on how to get the cutest Olaf emoticons free on Facebook.

I would say that you don't need to see it in 3D, but there's this really great short before the movie that you must see in 3D. It's a totally unexpected treat. I'd love to tell you more about it, but I don't want to give away anything. Just make sure you get to the movie early so you don't miss it.

The monkeys are loving this song now. Don't forget the Olaf fun activity I posted a while back.

Go, go now! I bet you'll love it!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Delivery Man

I have been looking forward to a movie coming out like this so that Dadda and I could enjoy a date night. This was perfect, the humor, the drama, the cohesive story.

Vince Vaughn was his normal jovial self, which I've learned some people don't like the lack of variety to his movies, but for me it was perfect entertainment. After a day with the monkeys, I don't want to have to think or use any brain power while relaxing during a movie. I want to sit there and watch a story unfold.

Anyways, without divulging too much, the story revolves around a bachelor, David (Vince), who learns that he is the father of hundreds of kids via sperm donation. The story is not at all what I expected after that point though. It's pretty heartwarming to see some of the moments that happen in the movie. I recommend it, especially for a relaxing evening out.

Rating: **** No Monkeys Sleeping (at least not the adult ones).

Sunday, November 17, 2013


Daddy Monkey is probably more excited about the upcoming Maleficent movie than either the monkeys or I, but we're all looking forward to it. Here's a few treats for you all!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Free Birds

It's been a while since the whole monkey family has gone to the movies. However, we recently saw Free Birds in 3D (the monkeys are much better at watching movies with the glasses). I was having a discussion recently with someone about how there aren't many Thanksgiving movies for kids. So I was really glad when I learned what it was about.

The story revolves around a turkey named Reggie who has been trying to enlighten his flock about how they're being fed to get fat and be the main course for Thanksgiving. The movie portrays present day turkeys as dumb and Reggie is a bit of an outcast. Somehow Reggie lucks into being the pardoned Turkey and goes to live with the President and his daughter at Camp David. Just as he's relishing his luxurious pardoned life, he encounters Jake. Jake is on a mission to travel back in time and get turkeys off the Thanksgiving menu for good.

While not the greatest movie I've ever seen, it was a cute Thanksgiving movie and the monkeys really enjoyed it. I can see adding this to our Thanksgiving traditions because it's a good family movie with some accurate bits of Thanksgiving history thrown in.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Boo to You!

Happy Halloween from my monkey family to yours! Halloween has been a really long holiday for us this year since we started celebrating in mid-September when we went to Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party on our Disney World trip. The good thing about that is that we've had our costumes ready for a while. The bad thing is that I've been eating candy pretty much non-stop since then. We're excited to have some theme music this year. We loved the Boo to You Halloween music at Disney so much that we added it to our Halloween soundtrack for our neighbors to enjoy tonight.

To continue with the festivities, we'll be having mummy hot dogs for dinner and spiderweb munch for dessert (not that we need dessert tonight). Then Dadda monkey will take the monkeys trick or treating while I stay home eating handing out candy. Stay safe and have fun, everyone!

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Halloween Party

The monkeys and I had a costume party to attend at a neighbors house. She requested we all bring Halloween themed treats. She had mummy dogs, gummy worms, jack o'lantern quesadillas, punch with dry ice smoke, etc... Dadda monkey requested I try something we haven't seen on every Halloween food themed article we've seen. This is the pumpkin bundt cake I attempted.

I figured it was simple enough, two bundt cakes placed with their bottoms meeting in the middle, some orange frosting, and a green ice cream cone. We've been abnormally busy the past couple of weeks so I decided to take the easy route and buy spice cake mix and cream cheese frosting. Normally, I'd make them from scratch, in fact, at the same time I also bought pumpkin just in case I had time to try a new recipe I found. The green ice cream cones were quite elusive though, despite knowing we'd seen them before. I finally grabbed them at HEB hours before the party today.

Time was still a major constraint for me and I thought we might have to go with half a pumpkin because I don't own two bundt pans so I couldn't bake both sides at once. One other thing to note is that I think the cake in this picture was baked in a smaller bundt pan because my cone didn't fit snugly in the center like this one. Lastly, I was able to get my two halves to meet together nicely only because I had this trusty tool on hand. It trimmed the bottoms perfectly and the halves sat flat on top of each other. All in all, this was a pretty easy Halloween treat to make.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Parent Teacher Conferences

Monkey girl just started kindergarten and tonight is our first parent teacher conference. We've had a few incidents since she started school, but I don't think that's out of the ordinary for kids just starting public school. There's a lot of new experiences, a large building to navigate, new teachers and classmates, a busy schedule for a full day (8-3), riding the bus, eating in a cafeteria, homework (oh gosh, the homework! It's supposed to be work for her, not me, right?!), etc... Mix that with a type A personality and I would think there's bound to be a few bumps along the way. 

We've done our best (I think) to correct any issues that have cropped up and I'm hoping that tonight goes well. Monkey girl is smart, enthusiastic, curious, and social. Yes, I'm her Mom so I may be a bit biased. However, knowing her, I can see how it's hard for her to focus. Then again, as a friend pointed out those traits that may make school a bit difficult now also indicate she'll be a good leader.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

$200 Holiday Gift Card Giveaway

Welcome to the Holiday Gift Card Blowout Giveaway!

Gift Card Blow Out

The Holidays are coming and I am sure everyone could use some extra cash to buy gifts for your loved ones or maybe fund upcoming travel $200 would totally help with all these expenses.

This giveaway is made possible by my awesome co- hosts :

My Dairy Free Gluten Free Life , What Simply Works , Oh Locked Heart , Capri"s Coupon

and a lot more of other fabulous bloggers!


One very lucky person will win a $200 Gift Card of her choice

Giveaway will run until 11/15/2013 at 11:59pm EST, is open worldwide, must be 18 + to enter, and use the Rafflecopter widget below. Good Luck!


Better Beater Blade for KitchenAid Mixers

Another of my favorite kitchen items is this Beater Blade. It's designed to be used with your KitchenAid mixer and is essential in my opinion. When I first got my Kitchenaid mixer, I noticed that I had to do a lot of scraping with my spatula to ensure things were mixed thoroughly. That is a thing of the past thanks to my beater blade. It scrapes the side of the bowl with the soft spatula-like edges and works like a charm. I highly encourage you to get this if you have a KitchenAid mixer.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

The Fifth Estate

I don't usually do back to back movie reviews so I will get another post up this weekend. However, I would not waste your precious weekend time watching this movie. To be honest, The Fifth Estate, didn't intrigue me much when I first heard of it, but I gave it a go anyways. I think the movie could have been an hour long TV series and done just as well. It was dry, convoluted, and the characters weren't appealing. The Fifth Estate is the story of Wikileaks - how it began, about the founder, and about the demise. It doesn't seem to find a good balance between telling a story and documenting history. There's a recurring scene that's meant to be symbolic and help you understand how the Wikileaks organization runs, but it carries it a bit too far. I enjoyed the night out, but wish it had been a better movie.

****Two Monkeys Sleeping****

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Captain Phillips, a must see!

Dadda monkey and I spent one of our date nights watching Captain Phillips. I had been looking forward to seeing this one and it did not disappoint! Tom Hanks was captivating as Captain Phillips and the story was interesting from start to finish. The movie is 2 hours and 14 minutes long, which at first seems long, but there wasn't a portion I'd cut out. There wasn't any point that I thought they were dragging it out.

It seems as Tom Hanks has gotten older he's taken on more serious roles and he excelled in this one. There were a couple of small parts that were mildly humorous, though I'm not sure they were necessarily supposed to be. At one point, he exclaims, "What was that?!" and the audience chuckled a bit. The story has some unexpected twists and leaves you trying to anticipate what comes next.

All in all, I'm really glad we got to see the film and I'm happy to see it's getting good ratings from people aside from us. I highly encourage you to go see it for yourselves.

Friday, October 11, 2013


I signed up for Greenling organic produce delivery (you can check them out here) several months ago and it's been an entertaining experiment. We've gotten to try some new things all from local farmers, but the most interesting part is what you do when you get your local box delivered. For example, today's delivery consists of: spinach, mixed greens, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, avocado, red potatoes, persimmons, and key limes. Now make a meal with that...! To be fair, they do offer recipes that incorporate that week's ingredients.

I'm not the best cook, I love to bake, but cooking is more of a team effort between Dadda monkey and I. However, I have gotten good at finding recipes to try and thank goodness for I can search by ingredients so the butternut squash will become a roasted side dish, persimmons will become cookies, and key limes will become pie (of course!). Spinach is an easy addition to our morning smoothies in the Vitamix and mixed greens will be a nice side salad. I'm hoping the red potatoes can become an easy baked potato soup, but I'll have to research that more.

There is some rain in the forecast so that will make it a bit easier to focus on this task and get started on prep. I'm looking forward to a potentially rainy evening sitting at home with our monkeys. We may make it a movie night since we have no where to be this evening. I hope you all have an enjoyable night ahead as well!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

The Fifth Estate

The Fifth Estate comes out next Friday. I don't usually favor political dramas, but I thought this one could be interesting. I'll let you know what I thought next week in my review. Here's a clip for you to view for yourself:

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Frozen Fun!

The monkeys and I have been looking forward to Disney's new film, Frozen. If you haven't seen the trailer, watch this:

To go along with the upcoming release, I have some family fun activities to share. Create your own Olaf, the snowman or do one of Bro Bro monkey's favorites, a fun maze!

Monday, October 7, 2013

Returning from Vacation

Does anyone else's email/desktop look like this when they return from vacation?! 66124 emails!

Also, yes, the kids have their own bookmarks to play games and watch videos on my desktop. Another aside, kaboodle has made it much easier for my husband to buy me gifts. I find something I like on the internet, I add it to my kaboodle, and voila... when it's time for him to buy me a present, he just checks my kaboodle list! :)

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Potty Training

I promised I'd make this post a few weeks ago, but things (life) has been busy at the monkey household including a mouse-oriented vacation. However, the delay helped me come to some more conclusions.

 Monkey girl was potty trained around 4 years old. Despite numerous attempts to organize a schedule, setting alarms to remind her to try using potty chair, drinking more water, etc... (you know the normal routine we parents go through come potty training time), she just wasn't getting it. Then one day it was like a light switch went off in her head, as if she just realized what we were going for and from that day on, she used the potty chair (day and night) without much effort. It took a while, caused us much frustration, but in the end it was simple, she just needed to be ready and figure it out for herself.

Not that I'm saying the efforts we put forth weren't worth it, in fact I'm certain that's what helped her understand what the goal was, but I firmly believe she just needed to be physically and mentally ready. I will say I was getting nervous because of her age. Her Mother's Day Out required them to be potty trained for the 4 year old class (I know others that require it for the 3 year old class) and I had tons of friends who boasted that their 2 year olds were successfully potty trained. As I hung my head and muttered something about 'potty training going well, but not being quite there yet', I envied these friends. Why was it so simple for them?

Then after Bro Bro monkey's 3rd birthday, we decided to buckle down and get the routine going for him. After all, that four year old Mother's Day Out was looming and I knew that meant it had to get done. Talk about pressure! Bro Bro monkey still wasn't getting it as we approached his 4th birthday. Again, the nerves set in, the thoughts that I wasn't doing my best as his parent, the not knowing what I was doing wrong or what I should be doing instead...

He'd sit down on his potty when I asked him, but even when he would go pee pee, he didn't even realize he was going. It was purely coincidence that the timing of sitting on the potty chair and actually having to go lined up. It eventually became a struggle to even get him to 'try' by sitting on his potty chair.

We started a reward system just for trying to keep the training going. The reward system worked brilliantly for us. Bro Bro loves trains and Thomas engines were relatively inexpensive. With the infrequency of our successes we decided it was worth it for our endeavor. However, the more he tried, the more he'd want a reward for a drop of urine. Simultaneously, I was getting frustrated with both monkeys reluctance to clean their rooms. So we came up with a plan. For Bro Bro monkey, we'd ask him to clean his room and we'd come check on him in a couple of minutes. If he was caught playing instead of cleaning, we'd take a toy away (usually a train). In the beginning, we collected a lot of trains! We'd place them on our entertainment center, near his potty chair, and told him that when he'd try to use the potty on his own, we'd reward him by giving him one of the trains back. Thank goodness, because buying trains was starting to add up, not only in expense, but clutter! This reward system has worked brilliantly, he's been motivated not only to be efficient with his cleaning, but also to use the potty chair on his own.

Back to potty training, Bro Bro just wasn't getting it. Shortly before our trip to Disney World, he started realizing when he had to go and actually USING the potty chair. Of course, as we were about to set off on a 9 day road trip, I was less than enthused about the timing, but of course I was thrilled that things were progressing. As we've continued, we've had our setbacks, obstacles, and continued frustrations, but overall he's doing well. We need to work on using the potty chair away from home, going #2, and night time potty training, but at home, we're having almost no accidents! Plus he's become pretty adept at cleaning his room! :)

By the way, the monkeys and I highly endorse the Baby Bjorn potty chair we've been using for many years now. We have 2 of them (one highback upstairs, and the one pictured downstairs). 

Holiday Gift Card Blowout for Bloggers

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Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Fiber Element Bamboo Sheet Set Giveaway!

Welcome to the

Fiber Element Bamboo Sheet Set Giveaway!

My bedroom is my sanctuary and I've made sure to make my bed very relaxing. Perhaps too relaxing! Is there anything better than snuggling in bed after a long day? With many of us spending at least a third of our lives in bed, we should spoil ourselves a bit more at bed time. One of the best ways to make bedtime feel more luxurious is with high quality, silky sheets. While many of us may love the feel of such soft sheets, however, many of us cannot afford the price tag goes alongside high quality cotton sheets, leading to us spending more money in the long run on sheets that will quickly fall apart or lose that softness after a few washings. Luckily, there is an option that is not only friendly for your wallet, but the environment as well - Fiber Elements Organic Bamboo Sheets! With Fiber Elements bamboo sheets, you are getting sheets that are not only environmentally friendly, but softer than even 1,000 thread count cotton sheets. Once you have laid your head on these sheets and felt their super soft texture, you will never buy cotton sheets again! While these sheets normally retail for $139.99 - $219.99, Fiber Elements is currently running a sale on their sheets, allowing you to buy a Full, Queen, King, or California king set even more cheaply. The only thing better than purchasing a set of these sheets, however, is winning a set of your own! Good luck!

Five lucky readers will receive a Fiber Elements Organic Bamboo Sheet set of their choice!

Giveaway ends October 23rd at 11:59pm, open to US and Canada, ages 18+. To enter please use the Rafflecopter form below. Good luck.

Organized by Mom Powered Media. With special co-host My Dairy Free Gluten Free Life.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Disclosure:Mommy 2 Monkeys is not responsible for sponsor prize shipment. Please contact with questions or to see your business or blog featured on the next big event!

Yard Sale Time...Still Not Prepared

Our neighborhood is hosting a community yard sale this weekend. Despite having gone through this a couple of times now, I'm still not prepared. This time I blame it on being sick, being busy with other things, having cars parked in the garage so there's no room to organize, and just complete laziness. I also feel like I don't have any big ticket items and last time we had a yard sale without eye candy, we didn't do well. I thought about joining with another neighbor, but that means I'd need to be really prepared. We'll see how much I can accomplish Friday. 

I'm still adjusting to the monkey's school routines too. Between the start of the year at a new school, our vacation, and being sick, any semblance of a routine has gone out the window. We got monkey girl's homework done for this week, BUT I forgot to wash her nap towel so she's been without it for the last two days. Which reminds me... it's still sitting in the laundry room! Talk to you all later.

Monday, September 30, 2013

America's Helper Tour

I had no idea that Helper has been around since 1971 and has 40 flavors to choose from. To be honest, my family rarely made it, but Dadda monkey's family did and it's something he enjoys. It's quick, easy, flavorful, and convenient. He loves sharing the cheeseburger macaroni with the kids, but it hasn't grown on me. However, I really did like the new sweet and sour chicken. They also mentioned that you can substitute pork in this dish. The other new flavors are four cheese lasagna, stroganoff, and crunchy taco.

I posted earlier how Helper has taken to the road with the food truck craze in their America's Helper Tour. We got a chance to visit them when they stopped in San Antonio and had a fun time.

Now for the bonus! I am able to offer my readers a chance to try one of the new flavors along with a few other goodies:

  • 10" Non-Stick Pan
  • Oven Mitt
  • Scoop & Drain Utensil (cool item, I might add)
  • 30-piece Storage Set (love these for leftovers)
  • plus a box of new Chicken Helper
a Rafflecopter giveaway

The information and prize pack have been provided by General Mills through MyBlogSpark. 
Mommy 2 Monkeys was provided with a sample for the purpose of this review and the opportunity to hold a giveaway for my readers. No other compensation was received and the views expressed here are my own.  - See more at:
 Mommy 2 Monkeys was provided with a sample for the purpose of this review and the opportunity to hold a giveaway for my readers. The views expressed here are my own.
Mommy 2 Monkeys was provided with a sample for the purpose of this review and the opportunity to hold a giveaway for my readers. No other compensation was received and the views expressed here are my own.  - See more at:
Mommy 2 Monkeys was provided with a sample for the purpose of this review and the opportunity to hold a giveaway for my readers. No other compensation was received and the views expressed here are my own.  - See more at:

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Christmas Events are Starting!

It’s Christmas Event

Organized by: Mom Powered Media

Grand Prize: $500 Sears Gift Card
Event dates: 11/11 - 12/2
Open to US
Referral prize: $50 Amazon E-Code or Paypal Cash

Bloggers: Sign Up HERE

Monday, September 23, 2013

Disney World!

We just got back from a 9 day vacation to Disney World! I'll post more information and tips learned as soon as we get back to normal after the trip.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

America's Helper Tour

We're on our way to see America's Helper Tour in San Antonio. They're at 514 West Commerce Street until 7 pm tonight. Go by and see them and grab yourself an easy lunch or dinner! The monkeys are looking forward to trying their new varieties. With 40 flavors to choose from, there's a lot of options for people to find their favorites. The four new flavors are: Sweet and Sour Chicken, Four Cheese Lasagna, Stroganoff, and Crunchy Taco.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Meatless Monday becomes Meatless Tuesday...

Meatless Monday is becoming Meatless Tuesday at our house (at least for football season).  Dadda monkey always seems to dread Meatless Monday. I think it's just something about men and their carnivorous ways. Although as a football fan myself (HTTR!), I've agreed to move our meatless menu day to Tuesday. This Monday, my beloved Redskins will be playing the Eagles. Bring on the pigs in a blanket, wings, pizza, etc..!

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Neighborhood Walks

We've been having fun going on 'nature walks' with the kids recently. To make it a little more fun, we've made these scavenger hunt type sheets for them to check off the items as they see them. I need to change them up every so often so it's not repetitive, but the kids love doing it! Click here for the file.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Planes (Cars Airplanes)

Planes is affectionately known in our house as Cars Airplanes. The moment Bro Bro monkey saw the first preview, he was hooked and immediately noticed the relationship to Cars. He announced we had to see 'Cars Airplanes'. He's almost 4 and is all about transportation. Our house is full of Cars, Thomas trains, and I'm pretty sure airplanes won't be far behind (as a former flight attendant who is still enthralled by the magic of flight, I'm good with this).

As if the Universe knew how much he wanted to see this movie, we almost had a problem getting seats when we went to see it, but his luck prevailed and we all got to enjoy Planes.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Summer Sickness

Bleh, who gets sick in the summer?! Apparently I do. Fortunately, it's currently just a minor tummy ache, but it's depressing in the summer especially when there's so much on my 'to do' list and school is just around the corner. As such, the blog has suffered, but I'll back at it in the next couple of days. I promised an update on our potty training so that is in the works along with others in the pipeline. Back to resting now.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Slow Cookers and Grocery Shopping

As I've gotten older, I'm less and less tolerant of crowds. As such, I prefer to do my grocery shopping during the week even if it means having the monkeys tag along. Although, I've figured out the secret to getting them to sit (mostly) still through the store is to buy a couple of agua frescas at the counter near the produce section right when we walk in (Thank you HEB for that, I'll miss it if we move). Also, thank goodness for programs like Mother's Day Out so I only have to do that during the summer. Who knew I'd be grateful for the ability to do errands on my own? Although I'm still hoping to find some of that precious alone time to just sit in a quiet house and do whatever it is my heart desires at the time.

Part of my plan to reduce time spent working at home and shuffling the kids to various activities meant utilizing my slow cooker more. However, that's getting more and more difficult for a couple of reasons. First, it seems most slow cooker recipes are better suited for cooler weather. Second, most of the recipes I find are for chicken. We made a pork dish the other night, but it came out very dry. Third, I do NOT enjoy cooking my food BEFORE putting it in the slow cooker. I may as well be cooking the whole dish that evening. If you ask me to saute, boil, or brown my food before putting it in the slow cooker, I'm most likely going to move onto the next recipe. I want to dump my food and go! Please share if you have any good ones. Anyways, I'm off to find some decent meal options for this week so I can head to the grocery store tomorrow.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013


Turbo, or the racing snail movie as we called it, was a really cute film. I'm not sure the previews do it justice. Dadda monkey wasn't sure he wanted to see it, but is glad that he did. He described it as "not so much of a racing snail movie, as a movie about following your dreams and the value of self-confidence and family". 

First off I want to mention that I didn't know this movie was in 3D and was a little worried since we brought Bro Bro monkey (currently 3 1/2) with us. We haven't brought him to a 3D movie since our second attempt (How to Train Your Dragon, I believe) where we learned he didn't have the patience to keep the glasses on or sit still through a movie. He's done better with movies as a whole, but I have avoided bringing him to any other 3D movies. However, he did great with Turbo! Both monkeys were a little tired and got a little restless during some downtime midway through the film, but rallied when the story got to the Indy 500 scenes. The monkeys said they enjoyed the film and even laughed during some of the 'silly' parts.

Turbo (AKA Theo) lives a ho hum life as a garden snail, but (somehow) has access to a TV and is enthralled with auto racing and one racer in particular. His brother continues to tell Theo to give up his passion for racing and face the reality of his life as a garden snail. Theo's routine day means going to work with the other snails harvesting tomatoes. However, his dream of being fast interrupts his daily work and ultimately is fired, along with his brother (who was always defending Theo, despite his own misgivings). It's an interesting turn of events that gives Theo/Turbo his gift of speed and he uses it to save first himself, then his brother, but along the way they are separated from their home. What happens next is what leads to them to the Indy 500. I don't want to say too much because it's a darling movie and definitely worth watching. 

There's some decent 3D effects, but I don't think you'd lose anything by not seeing it in 3D. The other kids in the theater seemed to enjoy it as there wasn't too much chatter, but there was a cute point in the movie where one moviegoer said aloud 'he cheated!' It was really cute that everyone got into it. So go out and enjoy Turbo!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Excited for Planes!

I love to fly, as a flight attendant, that was sort of a necessary requirement. However, this time I'm talking about Disney's Planes! Bro Bro monkey is a huge fan of Cars so there's no way we'd miss a chance to see Planes. We're anxiously awaiting the release on August 9th. 

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Best Measuring Spoons

I've had the flimsy metal measuring spoons, the plastic ones that have the labels that wear off over time, and the kind that are attached by a ring, requiring you to separate them or wash them all together. I found all of them to be disappointing, but a couple of months ago, I found my favorite measuring spoons, Progressive International Stainless Steel Magnetic Measuring Spoons. They're a durable stainless steel, the labels are attached to a magnet and haven't shown any signs of wear after several washings, and even have a 1/2 Tbsp spoon. Best of all... they nest inside each other and stay put because of the magnets! One side is narrower for fitting in spice jars and the other side is rounded for liquids. Seriously, they're just about perfect and highly recommended by this Monkey Momma who loves to bake.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Thomas Sale

Bro Bro monkey is a huge Thomas and Friends fan. Lucky for me, he can spend hours playing on the train table in his room. I went to Toys R Us online today to buy him a portable desk for our big trip this fall, when I noticed they were having a huge clearance sale (click here to go it). The desk I wanted was only $10 so, as I'm always apt to do, I chose to pad my order to get free shipping (Dadda monkey will give me his usual eye-roll for doing so). We're working on potty training and have the big trip coming up, so we could use some more toys and they were on SALE plus free shipping for padding my order!

One of the first things I added to my cart was this Take n Play Twist & Tumble Cargo Drop for half off. Then we added Sidney for $4.98. Finally, because we're just starting our Take n Play collection, I decided to splurge on the Slate Loading Station, also for half off. I normally avoid the take and play stuff for two reasons. First, we have a big table with a wooden track and these things take up a lot more space. Secondly, they're normally significantly more expensive than just buying new engines or features for our wooden track. However, Bro Bro monkey loves the features of the take and play tracks and has showed increasing interest in getting some more of them.

Hopefully, this will help us progress on our potty training. Now I need to scour their toys to see if there's anything I can get rid of to help make room for these new items. There were lots of other things in their clearance section, but I was focused on Thomas today. Happy shopping!

Friday, July 5, 2013


My parents are in town from West Florida to spend the holiday with us and visit their grandchildren. However, they also timed their trip to coincide with a bridge tournament in San Antonio. They spend most of their free time since retirement, playing bridge and are part of a bridge club in Florida. 

Dadda monkey and I are attempting to learn so we can play with them for fun, but are having a terrible time with the bidding process (more so me, than him). The game itself is fun and similar to hearts or spades, but the bidding leading up to the game is incomprehensible to me. Two diamonds seems to mean any numerous things depending on what preceded it. Dadda monkey and I joked we were going to use our own system to communicate with our teammates. Three purple unicorns may as well be what's being said because I just don't get it. Unfortunately, once my parents are gone, we don't follow through with our education of the game so there's no consistency to our instruction. 

Anyways, I neglected to wish everyone a happy 4th of July yesterday due to their visit,  but I wanted to update everyone with what's being going on in the monkey household recently. Enjoy the holiday weekend and best wishes to my parents on the last day of their tournament tomorrow!

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Santikos Free Summer Movies

Santikos is offering free summer movies on Tuesdays and Wednesdays in our area. We've been lucky enough to catch two of them, The Lorax and Despicable Me. It's been a great experience so far. Bro Bro Monkey, almost 4, has finally displayed the capacity to sit through a movie at the theater (as long as it's not 3D). 

We're looking forward to catching a couple more movies in the coming weeks. It's a nice treat to be able to do this with the kids. We buy a couple of kid packs (popcorn and small soda) and sit back and relax for a couple of hours. The only downside is it's wildly popular. The movies start at 10 and, despite arriving 30+ minutes early, we barely managed to get seats together this last time. However, you have to love the people who feel the need to 'reserve' the 10 closest seats to them for people who magically never make it. Eh, I won't delve into that nonsense. Overall, we're having a good time this summer and kudos to Santikos for offering such a program.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Fiesta Float

Better late than never, but here is Monkey girl's Fiesta float. Don't be too critical, this was a first time experience for both of us. Next time (if there is one) I know we need more sparkle, defined decorative edges, and a clearer theme. Though on the latter, my hands were tied since she kept insisting on a very general flower/garden theme. However, we were proud of our work!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Motivated Moms

I am severely lacking in domestic engineer qualities. It's a struggle to not only figure out what household items need to be done, how often, or finding the time to actually tackle them. I've seen the '30 days to an organized home' articles and I get through about 5 days (being generous) before I fall behind. Once I'm behind, it's all over. 

Anyways, I discovered this Motivated Moms app that I download to my kindle and it's set up like a calendar. Each day I open it up and it has the days chores listed. You can check them off as you go. There area daily regulars like cleaning the kitchen sink, sweeping the kitchen and entry areas, making beds, laundry, etc... The paid version allows you to make changes ... like changing laundry from a daily chore to a weekly/bi weekly one (daily laundry is not a service I provide) or adding custom chores like watering your garden! The best part is they even say, if you miss doing some chores, relax, they'll come up again (music to my ears). I love how thorough it is, items like washing my garage door, flipping the mattresses, and even cleaning the cabinets aren't things I'd remember to do very often (or at all).

We'll see how it goes. I've already gotten a couple of days behind, but have manged to catch up. Their philosophy of don't worry about catching up, just keep going is great, but I've got family coming to visit so I want to get as many of the obscure items done on the list as possible. I kind of missed the whole spring cleaning phase, so we're doing mid-summer cleaning! The other great thing, is it gets you in a routine and the extra items are done one or two at a time, so there's not a lot of time spent accomplishing your tasks. 

I'd love to say more, but I'm off to wash all the brushes and combs in the house!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Father's Day Burn

Unfortunately, Dadda monkey only had an okay Father's Day. It started well with a nice breakfast of crepes with nutella, strawberries, and bananas. Then we headed to the pool where we had a nice relaxing time, but Dadda monkey's back is bright red. Monkey girl tried rubbing some aloe on him and now they're both watching TV. Oh well, at least it was memorable.

Happy Father's Day!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Summer Solstice

In just a couple of weeks, June 21st will signify the beginning of summer. I happen to remember this day because it is the birthday of my best friend when I was growing up. Despite, it still being spring, San Antonio has had some really warm days and we're lucky that our pool is open. We've taken advantage and spent quite a bit of time in the water so far. In addition, watermelon and other summer produce has been abundant in the stores.

The beginning of summer and the end of summer are probably my two favorite times of year. The excitement of a summer vacation, warm days, time at the pool and/or beach, and summer produce lead up to great memories. Then as summer is winding down, you look forward to the weather cooling off, leaves changing (unless you're in San Antonio...), and apples, pumpkins, etc... But who wants to look down that road now?! It's almost summer and this monkey family is planning to have a fun one!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Shoebox Floats

Monkey girl has an assignment to complete for next week. She has to make a shoebox float. I've never seen such a thing, but it sounds like it shouldn't be too hard and could be fun. I've done shoebox dioramas for school, but floats is a new one for me. First stop for someone creatively challenged like I am, consult the internet! It's times like these that I'm thankful for sites like Pinterest and Google Images (who am I kidding, I'm grateful for them all the time, but mad at myself for getting sucked in to them for hours). I'm sure this won't be the last time I'll have to consult the internet for school assignment help.

Anyways, it turns out shoebox floats seem most prevalent in San Antonio during Fiesta. Fiesta is a whole different subject, but to summarize it's a big week long party with multiple events throughout the city (day and night) with a couple of big parades, none of which the Monkey family has attended. School even closes for one of the parades, Battle of the Flowers, which I think would be a great subject for a float. However, Monkey girl has decided to go her own route, starting with butterflies and apparently including a bunch of pictures of our new cat. Who am I to refocus her on a different subject, it's her float. Anyways, I'll cover her shoebox with wrapping paper and by that time (the next couple of days) she'll have probably changed her mind. For now, I'm just trying to figure out if we should attach wheels (pictures had some with and some without). We'll post a picture when we're done.

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Happy Easter!

The monkeys are winding down and drinking some ginger ale because their tummies are upset. Perhaps the Easter Bunny brought too much candy to our house or maybe the monkeys will remember they need to eat real food in between candy binges. All in all, it was still a memorable day. I hope you all had a good Easter.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

I Caught the Easter Bunny

I'm not sure if you've seen the I Caught Santa Claus photos that have been around, but they're such a great idea to help increase the magic of the season for your kids. There's also I Caught the Easter Bunny, which works the same way.

For less than $10 anyone can be a hero to children by catching the Easter Bunny 'in the act'. Catch him here - Catch him there - Catch him ANYWHERE!  In three simple steps, iCaughtTheEasterBunny can turn a typical Easter into something spectacular. Catch The Easter Bunny TODAY!  CLICK HERE to try it FREE!  and SAVE 50% on your purchase with this code - 50% off code:  BUNNY2013  

You can check them out on Facebook here  or on Twitter here.

Happy Easter, everyone!


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

My Lasik Experience

In college (some 20 years ago), I noticed that I was having trouble seeing the professor's notes in the front of the classroom. During a break, I went home and my Mom took me to her optometrist and I received my first, and only, pair of glasses. I've had this same pair of glasses for 20 years and rarely wear them. Not that I didn't need to wear them, but I preferred to only use them when driving or at the theater. Last year was the first year that I failed to pass the eye exam when renewing my driver's license and so I decided to look into Lasik. I heard conflicting things, some pros and cons, and decided to put it off, but Dadda monkey made a consultation appointment for me. I had already decided that if I was going to do it, I wanted it to be with 'that guy who does all the Spurs and Cowboys', so my husband took me to my consultation at his office. I was not about to allow some random doctor shoot a laser into my eyes.

One of my first questions, obviously, was 'Am I a good candidate for this?' Their answer was yes.
Next, I wanted to find out if it was true that I might have to get it redone in a few years. They said they use a new Z Lasik procedure and that I shouldn't need it redone unless my eyes get worse around 50 years old, which is apparently fairly common. After all was said and done, we decided to make the appointment for the procedure.

On my appointment day, I was extremely nervous, but everyone I've talked to has always said it wasn't a big deal, their vision improved almost immediately, it takes just seconds, etc... Let me tell you, it does take seconds to shoot the laser, but 20 seconds is a long time when you've got to try to focus on a tiny green light, people are helping you keep your eye open, and you're not used to people messing with your eyes. Also, the whole procedure is about 10 minutes. 10 minutes of eyes wide open, lasers and lights around you, and an already nervous patient. It was not the easy breezy walk in the park I had been told about. Granted there wasn't any real pain, but it was HARD. They kept telling me to focus on the green light (the green light that would sometimes move out of view...) and to stop squeezing my eyes. I'm sorry, but you're messing with my eye, my natural reaction is to fight against it and to try to force myself not to is HARD.

Anyways, after the procedure (around 5:00 in the evening), my husband drove me home IN RUSH HOUR TRAFFIC TOWARD THE SETTING SUN. Not the brightest (no pun intended) thing we've ever done. Even with my special after-procedure sunglasses they gave me, the light and long drive home were agonizing. They gave me a Valium and a Tylenol PM and told me I'd be out cold soon. No such luck, even after we arrived home, I couldn't sleep a wink. I kept my eyes closed for hours and later that evening I finally fell asleep.

The next morning we went for a follow-up appointment and I noticed on the drive there, that road signs weren't much easier to read. At the appointment they said my vision was a blurry 20/20 because I could read the letters, but they weren't crisp and clear. So much for that miraculous instant improvement. Now, I'm not being cynical because I guess it is improvement, but not the eagle eye vision I had hoped for. I was told that was normal (guess I didn't talk to 'normal' people) and that my vision would improve over the next few weeks. I hope that's true, because now a week later, I still don't notice much improvement. I have another appointment tomorrow so we'll see how that goes.

In hindsight, for about $4000, unless things improve dramatically, I'm not sure I'd do it again. Dadda monkey thinks it's because my vision wasn't horrible before. Personally, I had hoped (maybe unrealistically) that I'd be able to go to the theater and not wear glasses, see my kids playing across a sports field clearly, and be able to read all street signs with ease. As for the road signs though, Dadda monkey, who has perfect vision, says they're not always easy to read even for him, due to glare, fading, etc... Hopefully, I'll have a better update soon.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Oz The Great and Powerful Review

 The following review is provided by Dadda monkey:

Oz the Great and Powerful was a great movie. It does a wonderful job as a prequel and helps to establish the origins of the Wizard, Glinda the Good, and the Wicked Witches of the East and West. They also did a great job of pulling in the fans of the original movie by adding that black and white before Oz touch, only being a new movie, they improved it.

The movie begins with a spectacular 3D show during the opening credits. The screen is also condensed, much like the original Wizard of Oz, but they make the 3D effects extend into the darkness on the sides of the screen making the audience feel the effect is in the movie theater itself. It was truly an innovative use of 3D technologies.

The actors did a great job in their roles, the lead being played by James Franco of Spiderman fame. The star of Scrubs, Zach Braff, lends his hand to the comic relief. The Wicked Witches also did a great job, but I won't spoil who the wicked witches are just yet, it's kind of a spoiler.
If you get a chance to go see Oz, the Great and Powerful I would highly recommend it.

I'll add that Dadda monkey wasn't thrilled that they didn't address the ruby slippers. This is a movie that should definitely be seen in 3D, the colors are amazing, and the black and white section definitely made you think back to The Wizard of Oz. 

Here are a couple of fun things to bring the spirit of Oz home!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Oz The Great and Powerful

We've been hearing about this movie for months and are really looking forward to it's release this Friday, March 8. Here's a new clip of the movie:


Thursday, February 14, 2013

Be My Valentine!

Happy Valentine's Day! The monkeys are at Mother's Day Out, which is giving me one of the greatest gifts ever... some peace and quiet time to myself! I love my monkeys, but I cherish these moments I get to myself as well. I conveniently scheduled all my errands in the previous days so that I'd have nothing to do today. I can't believe my time is almost up and I have to leave to pick them up in about an hour. We'll have a special family Valentine's Day dinner when Dadda monkey gets home and tomorrow we get the luxury of having him home on a weekday so the monkeys will be excited (not that they know the difference between a weekday and a weekend though).

We've been up to some fun things here, involving our family, schedules, and responsibility that I can't wait to share soon. In the mean time, don't forget to carve out some quiet time for yourselves as well because Valentine's Day means loving yourself too!