Tag Archives: Family Fun

Festive Fun at Santa HQ at Fashion Outlets of Chicago

by Jennifer Wieland
Santa HQ at Fashion Outlets of Chicago takes your typical Santa visit at the mall to a whole new interactive level. #SantaHQ #lovehgtv #fashionoutletsofchicago
Thank you to Fashion Outlets of Chicago for sponsoring today’s post!
Santa HQ at Fashion Outlets of Chicago takes your typical Santa visit at the mall to a whole new interactive level. #SantaHQ #lovehgtv #fashionoutletsofchicago

Fashion Outlets of Chicago is always the go to outlet mall for me. It’s packed with high-end and everyday stores and so many delish candy shops that any chocoholic will get their fix. This Christmas Fashion Outlets of Chicago is offering a top of the line Santa experience for you and your family. Santa HQ at Fashion Outlets of Chicago takes your typical Santa visit at the mall to a whole new interactive level.

Santa HQ at Fashion Outlets of Chicago takes your typical Santa visit at the mall to a whole new interactive level. #SantaHQ #lovehgtv #fashionoutletsofchicago

Santa HQ was designed and created by HGTV and just like all HGTV makeovers Santa’s house has been modernized. Visitors can download the Elf-Ray Vision app on their smartphones. You can then locate the gears around Santa’s house and workshop and see what those mischievous little elves are up to in the workshop. You can also get a 3-D view of all of Santa’s toy blueprints.

Santa HQ at Fashion Outlets of Chicago takes your typical Santa visit at the mall to a whole new interactive level. #SantaHQ #lovehgtv #fashionoutletsofchicago

Kids can also get scanned to find out if they are the naughty or nice list with the big guy. After they are scanned their name will appear on either the naughty or nice list. You’ll have to work hard and hurry to get on the nice list though if you are on the naughty list because Christmas is just around the corner.

Santa HQ at Fashion Outlets of Chicago takes your typical Santa visit at the mall to a whole new interactive level. #SantaHQ #lovehgtv #fashionoutletsofchicago

The whole family can also take pictures of themselves with the Elfie Selfie app. The whole family will then be elfed and put into a cute little dance video you can email to yourself. It’s adorable!

Santa HQ at Fashion Outlets of Chicago takes your typical Santa visit at the mall to a whole new interactive level. #SantaHQ #lovehgtv #fashionoutletsofchicago

What’s even better is that all of these fun activities above are free to do at Fashion Outlets of Chicago. You can make reservations for your family in advance at http://santa-hq.com/

Santa HQ at Fashion Outlets of Chicago takes your typical Santa visit at the mall to a whole new interactive level. #SantaHQ #lovehgtv #fashionoutletsofchicago

Just like all mall Santas you can have your picture taken with the big guy and purchase a photo package. They have a special right now through December 8th where you can get a photo package for $34.99 now through Dec. 8. This package includes one 5×7, two 4x6s and 8 wallet-sized photos and digital downloads. This package increase to $39.99 from Dec. 9 through Dec. 24.

Santa HQ at Fashion Outlets of Chicago takes your typical Santa visit at the mall to a whole new interactive level. #SantaHQ #lovehgtv #fashionoutletsofchicago

Be a Christmas elf and help others in need!

Bring a new, unwrapped, unopened toy for Toys For Tots to Fashion Outlets of Chicago this season and help local children in need.

You’ll find the toy drop bin at the Concierge Services to donate your unopened and unwrapped gift benefiting Toys For Tots.

Toys for Tots is a program run by the United States Marine Corps Reserve which distributes toys as Christmas gifts to less fortunate children in the community.

PLUS as a thank you:

You will receive a complimentary general admission ticket to the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago when you donate a toy!

 

 

 


Playtime for the Whole Family at the Chicago Toy & Game Fair

by Jennifer Wieland
Learn all about the Chicago Toy & Game Fair and get a coupon. #ChiTAG #playeveryday
Thank you to Chicago Toy & Game Fair for sponsoring today’s post!

Learn all about the Chicago Toy & Game Fair and get a coupon. #ChiTAG #playeveryday

The past few years I have had the joy, fun and honor of getting to attend the Chicago Toy & Game Fair with my family at Chicago’s Navy Pier. This weekend if you are in Chicago you can head to Navy Pier and visit the Chicago Toy & Game Fair. It’s the perfect event to learn about all of the coolest, must-have toys and games that are out there just in time for the holidays. Even better you can get some great deals on all of the toys and games your kids are going to want. There is so much hands on fun that your family will have a blast!

Learn all about the Chicago Toy & Game Fair and get a coupon. #ChiTAG #playeveryday

Photos courtesy of Chicago Toy & Game Fair

So what can you expect to see and do at the Chicago Toy & Game Fair this weekend?

  • Walk inside the World’s Largest PomPomWow!
  • Super Power Sensory Hour 9:00 am – 10:00 am hosted by The National Lekotek Center providing early access to families of children with special needs 

  • Inventor Meet and Greet throughout both days!! Want to meet the inventor of BopIt? Operation? Jenga? Nerf? Twister? You can say “hello” and get inside knowledge from all – they’ll at the Fair. Also meet upcoming inventors and try their products out. You’ll be able to say you knew them before they were hot!

  • Yo-Yo Championship – Contestants from Coast to Coast

  • Attend the Star Wars Lunch

  • Enter the Young Inventor Challenge & Young Tech Challenge (free!) Amazing Prizes & Meet Toy and Game Executives and Inventors

  • Test drive vehicles from RazorPeg Perego and RadioFlyer Mini Tesla!! 

  • Mommy & Gracie Show Unboxing! Did you catch last year’s unboxing?? https://youtu.be/wslvGlPjDQs 

  • IllumiCraft STEM-based Craft Party with Gift

  • Upon A Craft Line Holiday Project

  • Be entertained by Ben’s Giant Bubble Show

  • Test out New Products Before They Hit Retail Shelves

  • Shop for the Hottest New and Classic Toys for the Holidays 

  • Interactive Exhibits

  • Giveaways, Stage Events, Magic Shows, Contests, Laser Tag, Crafts, Characters, GameTruck, Knockerball and much more!

Grab a coupon to save some money on your Chicago Toy & Game Fair tickets!

My readers can buy their tickets online or at the event and save $3 off of admission. If you buy your tickets online use promo code CHITAG3 here http://2016chitagfair.eventbrite.com to order or print the coupon below and present it at the event.

Learn all about the Chicago Toy & Game Fair and get a coupon. #ChiTAG #playeveryday

Want to know what companies will be on hand and checkout the schedule?

You can head to the Chicago Toy & Game Fair website and take a look at daily schedules for the event. You can also take a gander at the floor plan and all of the companies that will be on hand to make this event so much fun!

 

 

 


Seas the Day – Go Boating

by Jennifer Wieland
Seas the Day - Go Boating This Summer

 

Summer seems to always fly by in the blink of an eye! One minute you’re planning a ton of different things to do over the summer before the kids get out of school and it’s like the next minute you’re wondering how it was that you didn’t manage to get through nearly enough fun memory makers with the kids and you’re back to school shopping. This year I am planning to seas the day and taking the kids out for some boating fun!

Water is a happy place for my three youngest kids! Since each of them have sensory issues it almost seems like water soothes them and they connect it with it on another level. It’s one of the few things that makes them want to put down electronics and just play like the kids that they are. They regularly swim all year, love bumper boats, the splash pad and like taking the water taxis in the city. Living in the Chicago suburbs it’s just a short drive for us to reach Lake Michigan and with my parent’s having a vacation home near Lake Delton in Wisconsin a boating trip is a must. This year I’m planning on taking the kids out boating one afternoon so that they can see the open waters and fell the wind blowing through their hair and the occasional mist of water

Seas the Day - Go Boating This Summer #DiscoverBoating

Some fun and interesting boating stats from the 2015 Discover Boating Survey conducted by Wakefield Research

  • 82% of Americans say being around water is relaxing.
  • 72% of Americans feel healthier after spending time on the water.
  • Top 5 boating activities Americans want to do this summer: Relax on a boat with friends, take a sunset cruise, go fishing, watch fireworks from a boat, and go waterskiing, wakeboarding or wakesurfing.
  • 84% of parents think their kids would be more likely to unplug on a boat trip versus a road trip.
  • 88% of American parents feel that their kids need to get more involved in outdoor activities this summer, like boating.
  • Americans rank their favorite celebrity boat mates as Taylor Swift, Jimmy Fallon, Ellen DeGeneres and Robert Downey, Jr.

Seas the Day - Go Boating This Summer #DiscoverBoating

Since I need to learn all that I can so that we have the best time on our boat outing I’m going to be visiting Discover Boating’s website. Discover Boating is a national, nonprofit program on behalf of the US recreational boating industry aimed to help people get on the water to experience the fun of boating. For those looking to get their feet wet, DiscoverBoating.com is an unbiased online resource packed with easy, interactive features on all things boating, including a boat selector tool, get on the water tab where you can find rentals, classes and charters, cost comparison tool, renting options, youth boating programs, education courses – even nautical lingo and how-to videos.

How are you and your family planning to make the most out of summer by enjoying the water?

 

 

 


St. Louis – My Five Favorite Things to Do

by Jennifer Wieland
St. Louis - My Five Favorite Things to Do #FunnestFamily


 

I bet for a lot of people out there St. Louis has never popped into your head as a must visit place when planning your family vacations. Not there is anything wrong with St. Louis but more often than not I think people plan trips to Chicago, New York, Los Angeles and Orlando when thinking about family fun. Oh sure, sometimes other locations in the United States might pop into your head but is St. Louis one of them? If it’s not it should be because St. Louis is a vacation spot that guarantees family fun with great things to do.

Living in the Chicagoland area most of my life I have been to St. Louis. It’s a pretty standard road trip that most people here do at least once. My first time was as a kid with my parents. It was so much fun and we made so many fabulous memories on that trip that I actually remember more about that trip than I do about some pricey well-known trips that we went on. I’m such a fan of St. Louis that I’m going to let you in on a little secret…. Are you ready? It’s where my husband and I went for our honeymoon. Not surprisingly to me it’s on my list of places to take the kids this summer as well.

I know what your thinking? What could possibly make St. Louis so great? St. Louis is a city that is rich in history, food and culture so it has options that will appeal to everyone in your family. 

St. Louis - My Five Favorite Things to Do #FunnestFamily

My Five Favorite Things to Do in St. Louis

Anheuser-Busch Brewery Tours & Gifts

I bet you’re thinking how is this a family thing and I bet you did this on your honeymoon. Actually we had planned on making this a stop on our honeymoon but honestly, it was our honeymoon and there just wasn’t time. Nope, this is one of my all-time favorite vacation memories from my childhood! My parents wanted to go which was odd to us as kids because neither of my parents were drinkers. We did the tour and my parents found it fascinating, my siblings and I were mildly interested… and then we saw the horses! Clydesdale horses are an awesome sight to behold and will have children and adults oohing and aahing alike. I picked out a stuffed Clydesdale horse in the gift shop and that toy spent years with me!

Meramec Caverns

The Meramec Caverns are so fascinating! The tours are interesting and educational. You’re budding geologists or kids in general will find it interesting and bring all that science stuff from school to life. With ties to the Civil War and a famous outlaw the tour is definitely a must while visiting St. Louis. The temperature is cool inside though since they are caverns so bring a jacket. 

The Cathedral Basilica

Catholic or not anyone can appreciate the beauty of architecture and one of the largest mosaic collections in the western hemisphere. The beauty, detail and design that make the heart of the Archdiocese of Saint Louis will leave you breathless. This is one of those places that anyone who is a fan of art and design will appreciate and love. 

Endangered Wolf Center

There are zoos all over this country and while they interesting and educational the Endangered Wolf Center in St. Louis focuses on specific species of animals form around the world that are facing extinction. They strive to help preserve and grow the numbers for these animals and to educate the world about them. With the ability to “adopt” a wolf or a pack it’s a great way to teach kids about endangered animals and to let them help save a species.

The Gateway Arch

Driving to St. Louis from Chicago as a kid I remember how excited I was when my siblings and I kept asking are we there yet, are we there yet every so often to have my parents point to the Gateway Arch from across the river and say yes. Seeing the Gateway Arch from there was absolutely amazing but then we went there and I remember standing below and looking up with my mouth hanging open. Then it got even better! We went up into the arch! This is definitely a must and with its 50th anniversary they’ve been working on making it even better!

Enter the #FunnestFamily Contest

Now are you ready for some St. Louis fun with your family? How about a chance to win a St. Louis getaway with your family? Then it’s time for you to enter the #FunnestFamily Contest! Your family could win a weekend of nonstop fun in St. Louis. To Enter, share your family’s funnest picture or video with #FunnestFamily on Instagram, Twitter or the Explore St. Louis Facebook page. Contest ends 6/30/16. One entry per person. For more information on prizing, view the official rules and regulations.

 

 


5 Minute DIY Marshmallow Launcher – Summer Camp Fun Plus a Discount

by Jennifer Wieland
5 Minute DIY Marshmallow Shooter - Something fun and educational for the kids to make.


 

It’s getting nicer and nicer outside with each passing day and the kids are itching for the end of school so that they can play all day and have loads of fun. One of the great things about spring and summer is that there are so many cheap things to create for hours of fun. My kids love when I let them make this 5 minute DIY marshmallow launcher. When we make them it’s like summer camp is at our house. They run around the yard and even the house during bad weather shooting marshmallows at each other.

5 Minute DIY Marshmallow Shooter - Something fun and educational for the kids to make.

Quick, cheap and easy are words I love to hear when coming up with things for the kids to make. These 5 minute DIY marshmallow launchers fit the bill on all three. You can pick up every single thing you need at the dollar store and more than likely have some or all of the items at home already.

5 Minute DIY Marshmallow Shooter - Something fun and educational for the kids to make.

SUPPLIES

styrofoam cup(s)

balloon(s)

duct tape 

marshmallows

scissors

INSTRUCTIONS

Cut an inch or two off of the bottom of the styrofoam cup.

5 Minute DIY Marshmallow Shooter - Something fun and educational for the kids to make.

Blow up the balloon but do not tie it. Let the air out so  it can deflate. This helps to get the balloon stretchy. 

5 Minute DIY Marshmallow Shooter - Something fun and educational for the kids to make.

Tie the end of the balloon as you would if it was inflated. Cut about 1/2″ off of the rounded top.

5 Minute DIY Marshmallow Shooter - Something fun and educational for the kids to make.

Open up the end of the balloon that you just cut and stretch it to fit over the bottom (cut end) of the cup. 

5 Minute DIY Marshmallow Shooter - Something fun and educational for the kids to make.

Use duct tape to secure the balloon to the cup. I like colorful or decorative duct tape. It makes the shooters more lively and each kid can pick a color/design to customize theirs. 

5 Minute DIY Marshmallow Shooter - Something fun and educational for the kids to make.

Now your marshmallow shooter is all ready to go. Pop a marshmallow inside, pull the tied balloon end and let it go! Watch the marshmallow sail through the air. 

One of the things I love about this project is that it’s a great way to add some science into your children’s play without your kids noticing at all. Here’s how:

  • Use both mini and regular marshmallows. Test to see which one goes farther.
  • Hold the cup at different angles. Which angle made the marshmallow shoot farthest?

Galileo Summer Camps are Creating Innovators

If you want your kids to have more fun this summer and add some education to their summer fun then Galileo Summer Camp may be just the thing for your kids! Their innovative approach to summer camp creates an environment where kids are encouraged to explore, make mistakes and create without fear. 

Galileo Summer Camps are Creating Innovators

By signing up now, you can lock into major Galileo savings this summer! You can get a discount of $40 off a week of Galileo Summer Camp using code BEBOLD. What’s more is that this promotion is combinable with the Refer-a-Friend savings where you can save up to an additional $100*. 

 

*Savings varies by location.

 


Dancing is the Best Medicine with Just Dance: Disney Party 2

by Jennifer Wieland
Just Dance: Disney Party 2 is now available on Xbox One, Xbox 360, and Nintendo’s Wii and Wii U systems.

 My daughter loves to dance! You can always find her listening to some new song and making up a dance routine to go along with it. Since she loves to dance so much she is a HUGE fan of the Just Dance video game franchise.She also just so happens to be a lover of all things Disney, so the Just Dance: Disney Party 2 game was something she really wanted.

Just Dance: Disney Party 2 is now available on Xbox One, Xbox 360, and Nintendo’s Wii and Wii U systems.

One day last week my daughter came home from school cranky and in a bad mood. That’s just not like her. She is usually very bubbly and excited to tell me all about her day. Then I noticed her nose was a little runny and I realized that the ups and downs of our weather temps had set off her allergies again.

Just Dance: Disney Party 2 is now available on Xbox One, Xbox 360, and Nintendo’s Wii and Wii U systems.

 

Once I showed her the surprise I had in store for her, the Just Dance: Disney Party 2 game she perked up pretty darn quick! We’re talking jumping up and down and squealing while begging to play immediately.

Just Dance: Disney Party 2 is now available on Xbox One, Xbox 360, and Nintendo’s Wii and Wii U systems.

Moving, grooving and twirling to the moves of the game were most definitely a hit with my daughter! Just Dance: Disney Party 2 features more than 20 tracks from the hottest Disney Channel hits, with songs from movies like “Descendants” and “Teen Beach 2” as well as shows like “Girl Meets World” and “Liv and Maddie.”

Just Dance: Disney Party 2 is now available on Xbox One, Xbox 360, and Nintendo’s Wii and Wii U systems.

 

She’s been through all of the songs and dances but her two favorite ones are Better in Stereo from “Liv and Maddie” and Can You Feel It? from “Austin & Ally”. I have to confess that even I have been getting my groove on with her playing this game.

Just Dance: Disney Party 2 is now available on Xbox One, Xbox 360, and Nintendo’s Wii and Wii U systems.

Just Dance: Disney Party 2 is now available on Xbox One, Xbox 360, and Nintendo’s Wii and Wii U systems.

 

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

 


Wisconsin Dells Fun at Wizard Quest or Ripley’s Believe It or Not!

by Jennifer Wieland
Lots of family fun to be had at Wizard Quest and Ripley's Believe It or Not in Wisconsin Dells! #discount #wisdells #savings
I received passes in order to facilitate my review. All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.

 

For many Chicagoans heading to Wisconsin Dells for a vacation or quick weekend getaway is a common thing. The drive is fairly short for a road trip (about 2.5 – 3.5 hours depending on where you are) so it’s very doable with kids. There are also a ton of fun places to visit there. Many people automatically think of all of the water parks (both indoor and outdoor) since it is the water park capital of the world but there is so much more fun to be had than just that! Two of my family’s favorite places to visit is Wizard Quest and Ripley’s Believe It or Not! We just came back from visiting both last weekend and my kids are still talking about both of them.

Visiting Wizard Quest was a first for us. The kids were on the fence about going since we weren’t sure what to expect. I’m kind of a fantasy geek so I was excited. 

Lots of family fun to be had at Wizard Quest and Ripley's Believe It or Not in Wisconsin Dells! #discount #wisdells #savings

Once we got there though and headed through the portal they became very intrigued and started to get into it. 

Lots of family fun to be had at Wizard Quest and Ripley's Believe It or Not in Wisconsin Dells! #discount #wisdells #savings

I won’t spoil it for you but I will tell you that slides, secret passages and racing against a clock to free four wizards as a family team was so much FUN! There are three levels you can pick to play and bonus things to find as well. 

Lots of family fun to be had at Wizard Quest and Ripley's Believe It or Not in Wisconsin Dells! #discount #wisdells #savings

Wizard Quest was honestly one of the best times I have ever had with my three youngest kids. We were laughing and running around together trying to get everything we needed.

Rip logo orange stack

Ripley’s Believe It or Not! in Wisconsin Dells was someplace I went to as a kid and took my older kids to but hadn’t been there in more than a decade. For my three youngest kids this was a first time trip for them. 

Lots of family fun to be had at Wizard Quest and Ripley's Believe It or Not in Wisconsin Dells! #discount #wisdells #savings

My kids were fascinated, disturbed, grossed out and freaked out many times through the exhibits. My 8-year-old son thought it was highly entertaining. The kids all liked that once again there were secret passages that led to hidden chambers and exhibits. 

Lots of family fun to be had at Wizard Quest and Ripley's Believe It or Not in Wisconsin Dells! #discount #wisdells #savings

Learning about ancient torture devices, vampires and bizarre animals and people was highly fascinating! I now know how shrunken heads are made. Not quite a life skill but interesting. 

Lots of family fun to be had at Wizard Quest and Ripley's Believe It or Not in Wisconsin Dells! #discount #wisdells #savings

Are you heading to Wisconsin Dells? Do you want to know how you can save money on these two attractions?

My readers can receive a 10% discount with the promo code SWEETSANITY10 when you buy your tickets online at www.wizardquest.com or www.ripleysdells.com.  To save even more you can buy the Downtown Dells Discovery Pass, where you can receive the biggest discount on Wizard Quest/Ripley’s Believe It or Not combo passes.

 


#SpreadCheer with Betty Crocker Cookies This Holiday Season Plus a Giveaway

by Jennifer Wieland
Use Betty Crocker Cookie Mixes to #SpreadCheer this holiday season.


 

The holiday season is upon us and in my house that means it is time to kick my baking into high gear. This time of year though more than any other is when my kids want to help me bake. I like that my kids enjoy baking with me and want to learn how to do it. It’s a life skill that will serve them well as they become older. For me, it’s a great way to spend time with my kids and make memories together that will all bring us joy and happiness some day. Earlier this week my two youngest wanted to bake some cookies to get into the holiday season so I decided to let them #SpreadCheer with Betty Crocker cookies.

While they were at school I printed this valuable coupon for 50¢ off when you buy ONE (1) Betty Crocker™ Cookie Mix. I then headed to the store and picked up some Betty Crocker Cookie Mix pouches for us to get creative with. 

Snag your valuable 50¢ off when you buy ONE (1) Betty Crocker™ Cookie Mix coupon!

Use Betty Crocker Cookie Mixes to #SpreadCheer this holiday season.

When they got home from school they were so excited to see that we were going to be baking and making not one but two different types of cookies. I let them take over mixing duty and they took turns adding ingredients and stirring to get the dough mixed up. We mixed up both sugar cookie dough and chocolate chip cookie dough.

Use Betty Crocker Cookie Mixes to #SpreadCheer this holiday season.

For the sugar cookie dough we divided it up into thirds and used food coloring to make one red and one green and then rolled the green into a log and wrapped the un-colored and red around it. I then rolled it in wax paper and popped it into the refrigerator to chill while we worked on the chocolate chip cookies.

We made our chocolate chip cookies following the package instructions and baked them up. 

Use Betty Crocker Cookie Mixes to #SpreadCheer this holiday season.

Once the chocolate chip cookies were cool. I took two and piped frosting onto the bottom of one of the cookies and then placed the other cookie on top to sandwich them together. The kids then got to have lots of fun with sprinkles decorating the sides of the frosting.

Kids and cookies

Once the chocolate chip cookie sandwiches were completed we moved on to our colorfully, festive sugar cookies. I took the log of dough out of the refrigerator and cut we placed so 1/4″ slices. The kids then rolled the edges in sprinkles or dipped the tops into white sugar sprinkles. We then baked them up according to package instructions.

Use Betty Crocker Cookie Mixes to #SpreadCheer this holiday season.

Once the cookies were all baked up and cooled we packaged some up to deliver to my parents. I had some plain paper boxes and lined them with parchment paper sheets. I then placed the decorated cookies in, closed it up and then wrapped some pretty raffia ribbon around it and attached one of the lovely Betty Crocker #SpreadCheer gift tags that you can download HERE.

Use Betty Crocker Cookie Mixes to #SpreadCheer this holiday season.

Now it’s your turn to #SpreadCheer with Betty Crocker and enter for a chance to win $20 Paypal cash!

 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 


Family Fun Time Building a Fort

by Jennifer Wieland
Sofa Fort City with Lush Bamboo Throws from Wayfair.com

 

How do you turn a cold and blustery day with snowflakes dancing on the wind into a fun family time in the house without electronics? Why, you go old school of course and build a sofa fort with the kids of course.

Sofa Fort City with Lush Bamboo Throws from Wayfair.com

Since I am a Wayfair Homemaker they were cool enough to send me this utterly soft and gorgeous bamboo throw from Lush with the instructions to have some fun and build a sofa fort with your kids!

Sofa Fort City with Lush Bamboo Throws from Wayfair.com

With all of that pretty fringe I felt this throw needed to be turned into a regal fort. That’s why I opted to build the King Couch’s Castle for my little princess and prince to play in.

Sofa Fort City with Lush Bamboo Throws from Wayfair.com

To make the King Couch’s Castle I changed a few things from the diagram with what we had on hand and what would work best for my kids’ heights.

Supplies:

1 desk
2 chairs
2 dust mops (or brooms)
1 king size flat sheet
1 lush throw
duct tape
rubber bands
1 plastic milk crate

Sofa Fort City with Lush Bamboo Throws from Wayfair.com

To get this fort build underway I placed a chair with its back facing each end of the desk. I then used a dust mop to create the center of my castle towers on each side by placing them along the backs of the chairs.

Sofa Fort City with Lush Bamboo Throws from Wayfair.com

I used some duct tape to hold the dust mops in place since I was using plastic backed chairs. 

Sofa Fort City with Lush Bamboo Throws from Wayfair.com

Then we placed the sheet over the poles and draped it nicely. After that I used a rubber band around each pole to hold the sheet in place. I then placed the milk crate on top of the desk and sheet. We then draped the Lush throw over the poles. We secured it to the poles with another set of rubber bands and then banded the throw in to other spots to create a fancy, regal drape for our throw. We finished off our interior with big, comfy body pillow and then placed some animals into the castle stable.

The kids are absolutely loving their new fort and spent the morning and evening hanging out in it together.

If you want to spend some time with your kids building your own sofa fort city, then be sure to check out Wayfair for the perfect throw for your own regal fort.


A Frighteningly Good Time at Six Flags Great America Fright Fest

by Jennifer Wieland

 

I was invited to an event at Six Flags Great America but all thoughts and opinions in this post are 100% my own.

Recently my family and I were invited to attend a behind the scenes look at Six Flags Great America Fright Fest. My two youngest boys have wanted to go to this for years now. They love all things that scare the bejeezus out of me. I am not known for loving anything of the spooky variety. I chalk it up to being a nervous Nelly who also grew up across the street from a famously haunted cemetery. I was game for this though since it was bright and early in the morning and we were getting a chance to see what went into making it all a frighteningly good time at Six Flags Great America Fright Fest. 

Fright Fest

While both of my boys that went with me are into zombies it was fun for them to see all of the people made up for the various areas of the park. The costume work that goes into making Fright Fest so much fun is amazing! They costume area holds over 250 costumes for the cast and crew scare the guests. The makeup trailer boasts 25 makeup artists on staff to take the cast and crew from average Johns and Janes to something that looks like it just escaped a horror movie set. 

A Frighteningly Good Time at Six Flags Great America #FrightFest #NoMercy

We were even given the chance to have ourselves made over into a monster from one of the many talented makeup artists. The boys were a bit leery of that but I went for it. I asked to be made into a zombie. It was amazing how quickly they were able to take me from regular old sweets eating me to a moaning, brain munching fiend. 

A Frighteningly Good Time at Six Flags Great America #FrightFest #NoMercy

This year there is a new haunted house and it is called The Gates of Hell. I wish I could report on this but as the boys and I entered and the doors closed behind us, they decided it really wasn’t necessary. In other words, we all chickened out in my group. 

A Frighteningly Good Time at Six Flags Great America #FrightFest #NoMercy

There was one ride open and it was one of the roller coasters, Vertical Velocity. To many people, like my 11-year-old, going on a roller coaster is one of the most frightening things anyone can do. My 8-year-old though has been dying to go in this particular roller coaster. Lucky, for him he finally hit that lucky height of 54″ and was able to ride on it. I rode with him on it and the wonderful folks at Six Flags were kind enough to record him on it. Watch below to see one of Jackson’s roller coaster adventures.  

 
If you enjoyed that video of Jackson’s Roller Coaster adventures then check out another one below from earlier this year at Six Flags Great America.


 

For more information on the frighteningly, good fun at Six Flags Great America Fright Fest be sure to check out their website

 

 


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