Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Benefits of Montessori Preschool

If you are looking for a Redmond preschool, you may want to consider a Montessori education. You may not realize that Montessori started as a preschool program. There are several things that make Montessori preschool programs beneficial. 

Free to Move 
One of the things many children find challenging about preschool is the need to sit still and quiet while listening to the teacher. In a Montessori classroom, there are traditional desks and chairs, but there are also floor mats and other smaller, more casual work areas. The students can choose where they feel most comfortable to sit, lay or stand. They can also move around the classroom, getting a snack, or moving to the quiet section to page through a book.

Student-Led Learning
In a Montessori preschool, the children have a great deal of control over what they learn. The study is also self-paced, ensuring the children spend as much time as they like with the things that interest them.

Classroom Structure
The classroom structure in Montessori allows children of multiple ages to share one room. This structure allows older children to act as mentors to younger children and encourages group collaboration.

Although children can begin classes at any time between the ages of 3 and 6, the Montessori program is set up on a 3-year cycle. This allows the children to develop strong bonds with their peers and teachers at this vulnerable age. The teachers get to know their students intimately, which allows them to accurately gauge their progress.

Classroom Design
Montessori classrooms are designed with children in mind, with furniture size for them and shelves at their eye level. The rooms are not cluttered with unnecessary items, and natural materials, such as wood and fabric, are used whenever possible. Hands-on activities, such as gardening and cooking, are a regular part of the curriculum.

Selecting the Montessori option when looking for a Redmond preschool is a great way to ensure your child gets a well-rounded, child-centered start to his or her educational career. Children who begin their education in Montessori programs have improved concentration, coordination, independence, and self-regulation. They gain these skills while becoming part of a close-knit community.


Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Earn Big Cash Back on your Christmas Shopping #Swagbucks

As we quickly approach Christmas, Swagbucks knows you still have lots of shopping to do, and they're offering big cash back for shopping online at several of your favorite retailers right now!

Just go to this page to see all of the deals available and get the jump on your holiday shopping.                 
In order to take advantage of the cash back, just create your Swagbucks account when prompted (it takes less than 30 seconds) and then you're all set!

Your cash back comes in the form of SB points, which you can redeem for gift cards to places like Amazon, Target, Walmart, Starbucks, or get PayPal cash!                 

As a special bonus, if you sign up through me you get a 300 SB ($3) bonus when you earn your first 300 SB before January 1st! This site's a great way to extend your shopping budget, especially around the holidays! I've been doing it for years, and it's great to have that extra money stockpiled when you need it for gifts! AND your money comes back to you AGAIN in the form of more Swagbucks!

Monday, December 10, 2018

Winterfest at Worlds of Fun is the Ultimate Family Experience!

Some of you may remember this post where I talked about the First Ever Winterfest at Worlds of Fun here in Kansas City. Well, friends, my family got to go again because the rockin' Kansas City Parent joined forces with Worlds of Fun and hooked us up with tickets! And not only tickets, but some sweet merch you are going to covet, as well as Taste of Winterfest (more on that later).

I can't even believe we have such a neat thing in Kansas City to do in the WINTER, when normally we are huddled inside our houses on screens or in front of the fire or in our vehicles driving driving driving. If you do one important and lasting memory "thing" for and with your family this winter, go to WINTERFEST on a Friday, Saturday or Sunday evening! You will truly be transported to a Winter Wonderland!

Q: Is it cold there?
A: Depends on what the weather is like when you go. It was in the 30s when we went, so we bundled up (my youngest son NEVER is seen out of flip flops and shorts, so this was a huge thing for him and you know it was cold). Worlds of Fun has little "warming stations" with little firepit-type things where you can warm your hands. We went in the bathrooms and restaurants to get warm if we needed to. YES, it was cold that night, and that's what WINTER is like, so yeah, it was perfect. I love living in the Midwest, where we actually get to experience WINTER!

This girl had a plan for the night, and it included going on the carousel first!

Let's go on a tour of the Taste of Winterfest because I love food and fun drinks
(only $25 to try 8 fun items!)

This is the Loaded Fried Yams, consisting of fried waffle sweet potato fries covered with cheese, sliced Brussels sprouts, cranberries and chicken. My kids scarfed it down. I was amazed at the originality!

This is us with our Hot Chocolate Truffle Bomb with Warm Milk and our Loaded Fried Yams. Scrumptious and different! 
Holiday Pot Roast Slider? I could have eaten like 10 of them! Those are cheesy hash browns on there, friend.

Tuxedo Chocolate-Dipped Bacon? Yes! And yum.

Bubble Tea. Callie had seen this on YouTube, shared by some of her favorite vloggers, and was anxious to try it. We all loved it. Little gummy balls in the bottom with chai tea (or you could get pumpkin spice).
We were not able to try EVERYTHING because we were having way too much fun at Planet Snoopy (go figure ... yes, we range in age from 9 to 52 and we rode those rides like there was no tomorrow)

Okay, now let's get back to the rides and fun we had!

Le Taxi Tour (it's French, peeps) ... Michael drove me this time; Eva drove me the next for "Driving Miss Crazy"

Eva sat out during the Flying Dutchman but I got this great pic of her in WINTER WONDERLAND. Seriously, that song makes total sense to me now since I've been here.

Flying Dutchman is a classic!

Bumper cars are a must for my family!

It's a life-sized snow globe that you can put your family in!

Yes. Just yes. A 1950s diner fuels my love for life.

Michael and Aron warming up at the diner.

My other four awesome people warming at the diner.


Then we headed to Planet Snoopy to ride more rides than I knew were possible, and I ran into a fellow KC Parent writer, Sarah Lyons! She has 6 kids, including twins, and is a writing rockstar. I love her!

I think we rode the race cars 5 times in a row! Who knew
Planet Snoopy would be so fun for us all?

I love these people and I love this place!

Worlds of Fun is super classy and gave us all kinds of fun
stuff, like this gorgeous glass ornament we will have
forever :-)
My suggestion to you is to get the Gold Pass (my oldest son has one). Free parking and you can go all year as often as you like to Worlds on Fun, including the Haunt and Winterfest. Go when it's cold to avoid the crowds. Go whenever it is convenient for you! There are just too many experiences to go only once.

Take your time! Enjoy the food, the music, the performers, the rides, the warming areas, the lights, ice skating, everything! Step inside the massive snow globe so you can have your picture taken. Do the snow angel cube. Do half the park and then come back another time and do the other half. The come again to see what you missed because THERE IS SO MUCH.

Listen, people. We paid about $1,000 for my family to go to Disney World one day and $1,000 to go to Universal theme park another day ... my family agrees that Worlds of Fun is just as great FOR WAY CHEAPER and we don't have to drive for two days to get there.

Friday, December 7, 2018

Earn BIG with Coupons! #Swagbucks

We're all looking for ways to save big at the register. Well, I've found a way to make every coupon I use at my local grocery store worth an extra 25¢! 

How, you ask? It's as easy as 1, 2, 3! 

1) Sign up at 
2) Head over to the Grocery Coupons page and start clipping coupons for your upcoming shopping trip  
3) Use the coupons the next time you shop at your local grocery store. You'll earn 25 points (25¢) for every coupon you use.  
That's it!  

But, that's not all... Today through Monday, December 12th, you can earn 2 points (2¢) for every coupon you print, up to 50 prints per day. That's an extra dollar every day just for printing coupons that will save you a ton on your next grocery store haul!

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

How to Choose the Best Ice Cream Maker, 2019 Guide

If you love life, the ice cream machine is one appliance you should never lack in your kitchen. Putting everything in order from the onset is essential when you want to find the best ice cream maker for your establishment or home. Getting the perfect ice cream machine is good because it helps you get more value for the cash spent through the elimination of unnecessary overhead.

Why Does the Best Ice Cream Maker Matter?
Remember that ice cream machines are made differently from one another. Getting the best ice cream machine is beneficial because it helps reduce the chances of contamination and gets the task completed efficiently. The right machine cuts off unnecessary expenses.

Factors Considered When Buying the Best Ice Cream Maker

Ease of Use
Electric machines that have compressors are the easiest to use. These machines can whip out plenty of ice cream batches with no intermittent breaks. For convenience and more ease of use, the machine should have freezer bowl that’s accessible and also programmable control knobs.

Ice cream makers with compressors are expensive, but they are worth the value.

Quality of Ice Cream Produced
The machine chosen should give premium-quality ice cream. Ice cream produced should contain fine crystals of ice plus a sufficient proportion of overrun. High-speed ice cream makers produce lighter and thinner ice creams which have tiny ice crystals.

Ease of Cleaning
Choose an ice maker that is easy to wash to avoid dirt build-up and bacteria that might lead to contamination of your product. Hygiene is an essential factor when producing ice cream. Avoid harmful psychotrophs that can lead to poisoning of your ice cream.

Your Budget
Many high-end ice cream makers are costly. Before going for a machine, be familiar with the batches you require at any given time, the level of noise you can endure and total free time available for you. Set up your budget and you’re ready for shopping.

Ice cream makers come in different capacities depending on the of liters of ice cream you want to produce. Larger capacity makers are expensive while lower capacity ice cream makers are cheap.

Some ice cream machines have self-cooling effects, which makes it easier to produce ice cream than the models that lack this property. The best ice cream maker 2019 models must support this feature.
Machines without self-cooling effects will force you to put the contents of the ice cream you’re making into the fridge to make it cool.

Additional Features
Some models will come with extra features that make the production process much more comfortable. Some of these added features include digital timers, easily removable parts, digital screens, and proper mechanisms for ice cream churning to help reduce the possibilities of forming ice crystals.

When shopping the best ice cream maker, check for any additional features that you want to see on your machine for efficiency.

In summary, use these tips to help you buy the best ice cream maker that’s soft-serve. However, it's all dependent on what you require from your machine and how much cash you’re willing to spend on your ice cream maker.  


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