Monday, April 23, 2018

New York Fury Season 3 ... Here we go !!!

MineCraft is a game that is played a lot at my house. We had the opportunity to participate in this cool event, Super League MineCraft City Champs in October 2017. We have liked Season 2 so much we decided to we definitely need to be a part of Season 3.



Season 3 will be even better because both our boys get to play side by side. My middle guy Kev is now 7 years old and has his own laptop (thanks to his Grandpa), this meets he has all the qualification to get in the game and play. After our first day (practice session), I see that this will be a chance for the broz to become even closer. Big Bro Ry is helping out lil bro and they are having a blast, even making some new friends. Dont leave out RebelGirl aka Baby Sister at all. She is by their side cheering them on and taking notes for when she is able to join the game.

                           
                                   Helping Bro log in                  RebelGirl taking notes in her THT

I am so happy we were able to join the Season 3 for the practice day, we missed it for Season 2. Although they were not playing for points that count towards the championship, we had a few hiccups. We were informed that to be on the same team you needed to logging in at the same time. We did not do this so the broz are on separate teams, Ry is on Team D and Kev on Team F.
They are all on New York Fury so they all are on the same team right?! Mom Life always has its obstacles so you either get stressed or think your way out of the stress. I have found it is easier to just distract or confuse the Critters and it saves us all from getting upset. Hey whatever works right.

All the Super League staff has changed but they the new team is friendly and helpful. We missed Marco (who was such a big help to us in Season 2) but since we are "Vets" this Season we did not need so much tech support. We had fun seeing team mates from last Season entering with last Seasons jersey. It was a nice feeling to be able to help the new team mates get into the game and start playing.

                                    Movie theater #9 where all the game playing takes place

Season 3 is gonna be similar to Season 2 but I look forward to my guys racking up points and making it to the Finals. The first day we got to practice all the rounds, 2 of my favorite to watch are Soccer and Walls. I think all the players favorite one is Zombies, they always play this one last so might become the parents favorite too because you know the time is almost done. Some moms were brainstorming on ways to pass the time since most of them done understand the game, lol. Hopefully, moms and kids alike will have a good time for Season 3.

                      


There is still time to join in the fun. Click the link and use the code PJ5 for $5 off. We will see you there. Super League 


Wednesday, February 28, 2018

School Mom Life

As we say good bye to February and mid winter recess I am updating the kids room calendar. Yes I do have a calendar in their room, the kitchen and then I have my personal planner. We are a family of 5 needless to say we have a lot going on.

I want to teach my critters that it is important to know what day it is and what is happening that day. Sometimes we just go with the what that day brings but if we are more prepared more can accomplished so much more that day. I was told if you tell a child what you expect of them it helps them to excel and do well.

So I not only change the month for them but I add fun stickers to let them know days we don't have to go to school and special days. My middle critters birthday is coming in March so we got a extra sticker on the calendar for his special day.


Don't get me wrong yes school is fun, nice and the love their friends but it is not that favorite place to go as a kid. As much as I volunteer my time at school and send fun class gifts for holidays or national days (Thanks to Oriental Trading) my critters rather be elsewhere. As a "grown up" I can totally understand but sometimes we have to do things we don't really want to do right. Like work, laundry, food shopping, etc. the list can go on and on.

So due to all off this I think it helps to have a visual countdown of how many days are left in the week. It can also help the order of the days and months. Everything can be a learning experience you just need to keep it fun.




The (fun, pretty cool) stickers we used here, pictured above, are were gifts from the Valentine's Exchange we participated in with our Disney Latina Moms #DisneyLatinaMoms. I think the more "fun", bright or cool the stickers are the more attention they will get.

What are some fun and easy ways you help your weekdays go by a little faster?





Tuesday, February 20, 2018

To Mask or Not to Mask??

So the new mask trend is on the rise. I must say I have tried out one or too. Have you??

I like this new hashtag #SelfCareSunday I try my best to pamper myself on Sunday but
even if it does not happen on Sunday I try to take these 20 mins for me once a week at some point.
As a working from home mama of three critters with a hubby with 200 (feels like that) jobs I am needless to say always busy. Always juice to be poured, a butt to be wiped or a fight to break up.
For 2018 (yes New Year Resolution time) I am trying to focus a little more on me. So 20 mins once a week is a baby step in the right direction. Lil by lil is a way to get things done.   
    
                     
                                    Carrot on the Left and Avon on the Right

I have found that from the two different ones that I have tried some are more feel secure or "fit" better on your face and some slide off. Some actually even taste good. I know you are not supposed to eat the mask when you are done (that would be cool though) but I do lick my lips. Side Note - Someone please invent a edible face mask and just give me 5%, NO I am not greedy no Mr. Wonderful deals here lol #SharkTankFan

       
                         Here are the packages of the masks I have tried out

The first one I tried was Avon ones. I am a Avon rep so maybe I have a basis, lol. I feel like these are a bit thicker and don't slide so much. The Carrot brand I got for navidad. No I was not insulted instead happy that I can try something else to help my annoying adult acne. Hey it happens and if you are experiencing it there are so many different ways to try and help it. I was grateful for this useful gift from my lovely aunt.

No matter which one I try, I still try to lie back and relax while I let the mask work it's MAGIC. Most of the times is 15 to 20 mins so I take the MAX time to let it really work. Remember that when you try new products out especally on "problem" areas things can get worse before they improve.
After the first few times I felt that part of my face broke out a little more. No worries it is part of the process right?! I sure hope so.
     
                         You have to use downtime to play with FILTERS right ?! LOL

Use my link to try a Avon mask out. They are currently on super sale $8.99 down from $30. YEA Great deal.

My next one to try is one I saw in the Five Below IG page. It is pictured below, Gold Mask. I am all about it. I will let you know how it goes. I also saw that Bath and Body Works also has their own line so next round of mailed to me coupons I will be trying those too. In the meantime let me know different brand that I should try.

                            




Sunday, February 11, 2018

Peter Rabbit


Peter Rabbit movie was so cute. I LOVE love how they included the drawings from the original story I read as a kid and read to my critters as well. The "new" Peter Rabbit is very appealing to the Cruz Critters. Like most kids they don't care about dates other than Christmas and their birthdays but Feb 9th was a date they made sure to remember. Every time we would see the preview on TV they would remind me how many dates left until Peter Rabbit was out in the movies. We did read the stories, my mom still has a collect of old books. We also watched the Nick Jr show so we know all about the mischievous Peter and his friends and family. Peter's signature look has come a long way of the years but his blue jacket is always point point. Spoiler Alert - In this new movie he even has a inside pocket to hold things, like a bomb detonator. New look is Cruz Critter approved. 

 
Peter's evolving look 

Now that @rebel.girl.54 is going to be FOUR, (Yup OMG lets just say I am not READY, at all) and able to sit still for long feature presentation we want to start going to the movies more. We have signed up for the AMC Stubs Premiere account. It is awesome for discounts and rewards (my favorite) check out the link to sign up AMCStubs
              Thanks to my older sister for letting me know about this one. 
Movies at the movies in 2018 are definitely different than Movie nights when I was younger #olderNOTold. No more tickets and being one hour early to the theater to pick your seats. You can now do that all in advance and you get a text message that is scanned at the theater. Yes mom hold on to your glasses and flip phone this are all done on your smartphone or computer now, LOL. The prices are all different as well depending on when and where you go. Mom Hack be sure to look at different theaters and times to get the best deal. AMC was the best deal and with the membership it was even better.

                                                 

                                         Screenshots of the new way to "movie"

The movie itself was cool and fun to watch. I have to admit I was LOLing quite a bit. THe rooster dialogue was pretty funny for the grown ups. Sometimes when movies do the computer generated animals and real people together "thing" it looks fake but this time they got it right. I believed it when the new young Mr. McGregor (my hubby's favorite guy) was touching, holding or hitting Peter. My critters were all about the movie, even @rebel.girl.54 stayed wide awake for the entire film. She usually gets antsy and wants to wander around the theater mid movie but she was captivated by these rabbits. She did get up by the end but just stood "nicely" near her big bros seats. The characters were different from the Nick Jr show but it was a plus how they had different rabbit character to relate to. We all have our own character flaws so it was nice to get to pick a favorite rabbit. The Critters all picked Peter Rabbit (of course) but if you know me you know my favorite was the PIG. Yes Pigling Bland with his high class purple sports coat was the best. He reminded me of myself on a "diet". If I had to pick a favorite rabbit it would be Benjamin, the voice of reason and loyal sidekick. Parts of him remind me of myself especially his matchy matchy style. LOL #BrownONBrown 
         
      We bought our Easter Bunny ears along for some added fun.


We give Peter Rabbit two EARS (thumbs) up. I know once it is on DVD or Netflix we will be watching it a couple more times. I am going to print out some coloring pages to continue the furry fun times. Maybe even send some to school because Sharing is Caring. 

Google and Nick Jr to the rescue, click links if you want to join in the coloring fun.

                                

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Gifts, gifts and more GiFtz

So as January comes to an end and we have hopefully all put away the holiday decorations, stopped saying Happy New Year and have given up on the New Year's Resolutions 100 times, lol, we are left with all the gifts. Did anyone get anything useful or helpful ones. Things that will help with your new year day to day. Or did you get the standard lotion, gift card, cute plush??

I am definitely guilty of giving those standard gifts. It's the thought that counts right and that you completed the thought with a purchase. That really makes it better. Some people you do not know well enough to give a useful or helpful gift but I think we can all use chapstick with this weather so in addition to lotion and a cup I gave the school teachers chapstick. As a trend, I did manage to give a few more useful gifts. The first and favorite was to a neighbor that always helps me out in my laundry mom life jams, I gave her a wash card. Now she can wash her clothes on me a few times. I hope she will always think of me as she swipes her card in the washer and dryers.
Mailmen I like to give cash but since I am not ballin (yet) I cant just hand out $20s so instead I gave a tin of cookies and a $5 gift card to a good eatery. This year I picked Panera, usually it is Starbucks. Download the apps, they are always giving rewards. You know I love me a good freebie, Wink wink. I like to pick a place that maybe they don't always go to but that is good. A treat for them if you will.

So since I want to give useful gifts I would love to receive them as well. Duh! I have taken it upon myself to start asking for useful things (for the critters at least). Since I am a mom of 3 I don't really expect my family or friends to get me stuff just for the kids. For the holidays, for moms' day and my birthday I drop hints here and there. Please note, I only do this with my family like my sisters or any other family member that ask me what the kids need. We are blessed and grateful to have friends and family that remember about us and get us gifts at all. Don't want to seem like the standard gifts are unwanted. With my crew it is all about quantity and then quality, so the more gifts they have to tear open the happier they are.

I am not a Grinch and I don't want my critters to only open underwear and clothes on navidad that would def not merit classic pictures, yes all about the pictures.

There are other "fun"gifts they can get. The toys and toys are fun of course but they end up on the floor and I have the luck to step on them all. Yes OUCH. We lost some good toys that way #RIP.

Other fun gifts I asked for are fun sheets and my sister came through with emoji theme different for each critter and pjs. These are great because fun sheets help (well most times) keep the critter in their own bed and pjs are always fun. My middle critter is a homebody to the MAX so he loves pjs. The ones she got him are his new favorite, Angry Birds onies with the feet. He was super happy to see they had the feet attached so he does not have to wear socks. He has named his feet when he wears them Rag Doll feet. Got to love their creative minds.
      
                  Poop Emoji                            Pink Emojis                             Texting Emojis 

Another fun gift are bath towels. I originally my Dad for their passports, yup how else are we gonna get the crew to DR to the Nick Hotel. #OneDaySOON. Of course, he did not get them LOL but he did get nice fun towel set for each of them. Towels help (again most times) to get the critter that did not want to get into the bath out of the bath. #MomLife.
                         
                Star Wars for the boys and Shopkins for the girl, Towel and Washcloths.

So although the holidays are done we all will have upcoming birthdays, graduations, end of school year celebrations, etc. Think outside the box and get a gift that will be used or make someones day easier. As a parent, at time I think we buy cheap or not so fun because we have to also buy food, clothes, pay rent, etc. When you have the chance to give or get everyday things that are fun or nicer than what you normally have or buy think that is great. Also, I like to think that the person will think of you more and maybe you will even hang out more this year. I know I am thinking of my loved ones more as I look into my critters room and making plans to hang a lot more.

Friday, December 1, 2017

Traditions YAY or Nay!!

So as we say goodbye to Thanksgiving and gear up for the Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa I am left thinking about traditions. As my "new" family (hubby and critters) have tried to start our own like seeing Santa, get a Critter Santa pic to share, decorating our tree altogether and driving around the neighborhood to see all the beautiful decorations (this is a fun one it  reminds me of Halloween but replace candy with hot cocoa). Along with our new ones we try our best to incorporate the traditions that my husband and I have brought with us from our childhood.                   
These beauties were taking at the Queens Mall at the Santa HQ - https://santa-hq.com/

One of mine helped me create a new one. We all used to pile in the car to see the Big Beautiful Christmas house on Pelham Parkway. Yes the one Mariah Carey shot a Christmas video at. So this house is not what it used to be or it is just not cool. I still find it amazing but my kids are done with it after one glance. So I built on this by taking a look around the neighborhood to see the other houses. There are so many people that take just as much time to decorate got to show them love too right. Maybe this year we can even add to this and choose another night and go to the city to see all the store windows done up for the holidays. Just get me some Starbucks and I am good to go. I like to dream when we have our big house on the hill, lol, on what decorations I will have.


Another one from my childhood is going to my grandma's (Abuela's) house every year for Thanksgiving. Most of the family had been keeping this tradition but slowly over the years it went from getting together for all the holidays at Abuela's to then just Thanksgiving. Now just a few of us show up on turkey day. She always like to make a bring spread, classic PR grandma loves to feed her family. We all try to chip in and bring dishes or drinks but no one confirms until the last minute and we all show up when we want so kinda hard to eat together. I guess the most important part is being there since my Abeulo is no longer with us (RIP) Abuela definitely needs company.                                          

Since these tradition have grown and changed over the years as many things do, I am left with the questions why do we continue to follow traditions? Is it that we are comfortable doing them or do we all just feel forced to do things that we do not necessary like or even want to do.
As a newer mom, I want to instill Love, Pride and Joy in my critters lives not Regret, Anger and Hate. So even if we are going to continue some traditions we will still do them our way. For example, we will continue to go to abuela's house but not at the time one or two family members decide we will got at the time that works best for us. As the tradition goes we would all try to arrive early to help Abeula cook. I am talking like 9am she would never let us help and we really dont need to have turkey at that time so we would all just be there feeling uncomfortable because of the heat in the apt or the latest family drama. So this year we left the BX at 2pm and arrived to Manhattan at 3pm, traffic was still impossible so got to find a better time or route for next year, lol. We still had a early dinner but it was dinner not breakfast, lol.


I hope this helped you to think outside the box and do things that work for you and your family. I hate to say it but LIFE IS SHORT. So if there is anything you are doing that maybe you hate or puts you in a mood try to put "your" spin on it. If it means not showing up until most of the family leave because you want to avoid drama and confrontation do it. If it means eating ham and not turkey because you hate the smell of turkey then do it. The happier you feel the happier the holidays will be.
After all of that thinking and thinking I have decided to change my blogger name to RebelMom618.
I have and will be doing things my way and I invite you along for the journey. I hope you will update the link and continue to follow my journey.


                                                           Happy Holidays to all of you.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Santa HQ

So this was our first time seeing Santa so early in the season but I am so happy we got to see him. I think it will help my critters to know that he is already watching and fingers crossed they will all continue to do good jobs or at least I can use the "Santa is watching" for a few extra weeks.

So since we are from the BX we do not honestly venture out to Queens much but Santa HQ was the perfect opportunity. We arrived at the Queens Center Mall, which is HUGE. We have a mall in the BX but it is super small potatoes compared to this mall. You can fit maybe two or three of our malls in this mall. This was our first time and we did not see half the mall so it will not be our last.


So when we arrived we had to figure out where we needed to be, a nice security guard helped to point us in the right direction, Level two, center court. We made it to the right floor and could see the display from far away so we knew we were in the right place. We checked in at the entrance, where we got to see a magic show happening and an arts and crafts table. My critters raced to the arts and crafts table, we made some cute little elves we will use to decorate our home for the holidays.
                  
                          Arts and crafts and we found JustaBXGirl making a elf too

Next we joined in the Magic Show fun because this Elf knew how to please a crowd of little ones (and even grown ups). He actually turned a EGG into LOLLIPOPS. Seriously, I was even impressed, lol. They all grabbed a lolli and then we went to explore the Santa's workshop.

                                  He kept their attention for a very long time, very impressive.

We then went into the workshop where we got a chance to be put on the Nice list. There was basically a huge Nice/Naughty meter where you are "scanned" and then you see if you made the Nice list or NOT.
Tip - Make sure you put in your kids name not yours. Yes, I have to confess, I put myself on the nice list the first time we tried it. Hey you live and learn right, I thought they wanted to parent;s info and then the kids. Also just write you Kids First name and put in the last initial if you have more than one kid, time saver.  Also, that is all that will come up on the big screen so no need to type our a long last name. My critters loved to see just how nice they really are. Of course my oldest critter was the "nicest" of them all, lol.

                             
                  The meter would go higher or lower but I think always on the NICE side

Next we took some fun Winter Holiday themed pictures or tried to. The Santa HQ photo elf, Jessica had a wonderful vision of the boy critters holding the Naughty sign and our RebelGirl.0504 holding Nice. Nope that was not happening for them. My mom would say I give them too many options so they feel like they can pick and choose but come on we just did the Nice meter so no one wanted to be Naughty especially literally on the way to see Santa. So there were some tears but we got at least one nice shot. Big thanks to Jessica because the critters sure make her work for the nice shots. She did not give up and I think I will use these pictures in this years holiday card. Definitely a job well done. Thank you so much.

                             
                                          We got a picture of Jessica working her "magic"

Here is another parent tip so you can be 110% prepared for this fun experience. There is a app that you can download before hand so you can interact with the workshop. Unfortunately we did not but you definitely should and let me know how it works. Download the free Elf-Ray Vision app on your mobile device to begin exploring. (available for iOS and Android). You will probably want to have this on your phone and then bring your camera to take pictures of everything else. After the Elf Ray photo op we moved into a room were there were table of tablets, where we got to make a Elfie video.You can choose how many elfs you want in the video and it is pretty cute. I put all three critters in the video and the best part was after we watched the video there was a option to email it to myself. I did and know I can forward the video to our friends and family. Helpful hint to know before you make video so you are not stressing to record the whole video on your phone to post or share later.

 

We kept moving exploring all the scenery, Fake snow is super interesting for my critters. They had to touch and discover how their was snow inside of this mall. Since I am all about learning and discovery I showed them the fabric, cotton and some shiny confetti that gave the workshop this awesome winter wonderland look and feel. They really did a wonderful job, everything looked sooo beautiful. The next room was the control center. 

       

Here the very tech savvy Cruz Critters got to use tablets and explore the Control Center. The objective was to collect all the presents around the room for Santa. Since this was a tablet you know they were all about it. Santa was just steps away from us but they all needed to try out this tablet game. This interactive aspect was very fun, I even wanted to try. We had a Santa HQ tech elf helping us every step of the way which was very nice and helped to unlock all  of the bonuses in the game. After we helped Santa get all his gifts, in the game, it was time to meet the big guy and let him know all the Christmas wishes.

They ran to him as if they were all old friends. RebelGirl.0504 made herself comfy on Old St Nick's lap. It was like she knew this is where I go and I have to go here first, lol. The boys sat next to Santa and then Santa offered his other knee to my middle guy. They all got a chance to let Santa know exactly what they wanted, Yes Toys, Toys and more TOYS. Santa was the best in my book because he did not just "OK Ho Ho Ho." Santa told all the critters "Make sure you listen to your parents, eat all your veggies and brush your teeth and I will see what I can do". This alone was worth any and all drama that lead up to this meeting. I mean come on the guy of all guys, at least to kids, Santa said to listen to your mom that was pretty awesome for me.

                                         Making sure Santa knew the toys they need, lol

We got some great pictures and they even offered to let the grown ups in the picture. My hubby and I declined but our good friend JustaBXGirl took them up on the offer and jumped right in the picture.
Check out her experience at http://justabxmom.com/.
                       

To book your wonderful Santa experience santa-hq.com. The package prices are reasonable as well and you get them printed right there. Here are the options below:

                                                         


I hope everyone has as great a time visiting Santa as we did. Have a Happy Holiday.