Tuesday, June 23, 2020

Trolls World Tour is now yours to own on digital today and Blu-ray/DVD on July 7th!

Trolls World Tour
is now yours to own on digital today and Blu-ray/DVD on July 7th! It includes two versions: the movie plus the exclusive Dance Party Edition and an original short, Tiny Diamond Goes Back to School. Dance. Sing. Play. Repeat. Keep the party going when you own the “pitch-perfect family film.”

You can download and print the Trolls World Tour activity packet for event DIY decorations, recipes, games, and more!  Roll out your own red carpet party at home as you watch Trolls World Tour! www.dreamworks.com/movies/trolls-world-tour#activity-sheets

NOTE: We are providing this information to you, our readers, since we thought you would find it useful! No compensation was provided and all opinions are our own.

Sunday, June 7, 2020

Wears Woody: A local brand with Bold, Coastal Style and a great mission of giving back to drive over diabetes

When I attended the New England Boat show earlier this year, I had the opportunity to meet Mike Norwood, the founder of Wears Woody, a local Boston area clothing company with an awesome product and even greater mission of giving back to “drive over” diabetes. He started the company selling shirts out of his Jeep Wagoneer, Woody, and driving around selling his stock and giving back.

Wears Woody donates 7% of each sale to back to non-profits to help cure the disease. Such an amazing concept! You can choose which organization to give to (JDRF, Riding on Insulin, College Diabetes Network and T1D Exchange), or have it split evenly right at checkout.

Mike was a great host and took the time to explain their mission, products and we had a chance to check some of the new items they now have available in their online store.

Each article of American-made clothing is made in a local mill in Everett, Massachusetts, which produces their line of clothing for the mobile surf chalet as well as retailers and resorts around the east and west coast. I remembered the mobile surf chalet from seeing it parked near Boston’s South Station in Dewey Square - it is so cool that they can literally “set up shop” and provide an inviting retail experience anywhere!

Wears Woody has a new UPF line which is here this summer and has three different weights of clothing. I had the chance to try a few of their shirts and ended up getting their Solar Stretch Half-Zip in navy and it is SO comfortable and has UPF 50 sun protection in the fabric. New this summer, this line of clothing with embedded UPF protection has three weights and is perfect for the cooler temps that the evenings can bring.

The Anorak is one of their best-sellers and is perfect for colder times as well as wet or rainy situations. It has a pocket for your cell phone, too! I tried their t-shirts and other shirts and they are so soft and comfortable. It is great getting clothing that you can feel good about giving back to the community with.

Here's their founder, Mike, talking about Wears Woody:

NOTE: I was provided with the solar stretch half-zip shirt to facilitate this review. No other compensation was provided and all opinions, as always, are my own.

Sunday, May 24, 2020

Stuffed Puffs - A fun new way to make S'mores treats without the chocolatey mess!

Recently, we had the chance to try a new product that solves the age-old problem of melting chocolate and marshmallows to make s'mores. Whenever I've tried it, I will put the marshmallow over the fire, try not to burn it, and then when it seems gooey enough, quickly transfer it to chocolate and graham crackers and hope the chocolate melts enough. More often than not, I'm eating a s'more that is a little hard on the chocolate. Can you relate?

Enter Stuffed Puffs... a marshmallow with the chocolate on the inside! Who would have thought of that? Thankfully someone did! You put the marshmallow on the stick and when it's melted, the chocolate melts as well. We decided to try them and were surprised how they worked!

We decided to see if we could go a different route and make Chocolate Rice Crispies Treats with them and found that it was just the right amount of chocolate. We tried eating them right out of the package without melting them, and admittedly, the kids enjoyed them more when they were melted and not "raw" marshmallows.

If you would like to try them, you can find them at your local Walmart and online at http://www.stuffedpuffs.com

NOTE: We received a few sample packs of Stuffed Puffs to facilitate this review. No other compensation was provided and all opinions are our own.

Sunday, May 10, 2020

The Red Sox, PawSox, Celtics and Revolution are all providing engaging content to keep youth moving!

Since the start of the stay-at-home quarantine we have all been living through for the past two months, we are adjusting to a new way of living in these uncertain times. Life has been upended and normal activities have come to a screeching halt. Something as simple as watching live sports either in person or on TV has been paused at both the local as well as professional level.

In New England, our beloved sports teams have embraced their digital communications even more and have created everything from a whole section of content dedicated to fun and educational activities as well as videos showing exercises you can do at home! Our favorites have been the Red Sox puzzles, STEM worksheets, learning how to play half-ball, what a baseball is made of and Rick's Points to Ponder from the PawSox, and workout videos from the Revs!

For a limited time only, you can also have your personalized message displayed on the main John Hancock centerfield video board at Fenway for a donation to the Red Sox Foundation.

Here are a lists of fun things you can find broken down by sports team:

Boston Red Sox "Home Fun"

Keep the whole family entertained in the house with the Red Sox Home Fun activity page. Choose from coloring pages, math and STEM worksheets, videos, recipes and more!
  • Fun Outside!
  • Coloring Pages
  • Games and Puzzles
  • Spot the Difference
  • Math Worksheets
  • STEM Worksheets
  • Comic Books
  • Videos
  • Fenway Farms Recipes
  • Summer Slugger 
Pawtucket Red Sox (and soon-to-be Worcester Red Sox), AAA Affiliate of the Boston Red Sox
  • Safe at Home with Paws and Sox,” presented by Vertikal6, provides greetings from such PawSox personnel as Manager Billy McMillon, Hitting Coach Rich Gedman, and first baseman Josh Ockimey, as well as messages from Red Sox stars Mo Vaughn and Lenny DiNardo.  Third baseman Jantzen Witte demonstrates his hobby: woodworking.
    • Filled with tips, stories, and humor from PawSox front office members (and their family members), the show teaches how to practice at home with half a tennis ball, dissects a baseball to reveal the small rubber ball inside, and even includes jump rope lessons.
    • Also included are do-it-yourself lessons for artistic “Mothers Day Cards,” just in time. 
  • Merchandise dedicated to safe physical distancing practices and raising funds for local COVID-19 Relief in the RI/MA area

Boston Celtics
  • Jr. Celtics at Home, powered by New Balance: An interactive content series providing parents of young hoopers with various skill-enhancing basketball drills, as demonstrated by a collection of Celtics personnel. Jr. Celtics at Home, powered by New Balance offers drills that can be completed individually and utilize little space, helping your Jr. Celtics to stay active and develop their game in a safe and healthy way.
  • Jr. Celtics LIVE: The Jr. Celtics program is also offering live workouts on a weekly basis. Every Tuesday and Thursday, kids can virtually join Coach Sam as he hosts a fun, free interactive event for kids to sharpen their skills while distancing at home.
    • Tuesdays at 2:30 p.m. (Eastern) on Instagram Live (@celtics)
    • Basketball workouts geared towards older kids with a stronger basketball focus
    • Has previously featured a mix of Celtics VIP guests, including center Enes Kanter and assistant coach Scott Morrison
    • Thursdays at 9:30 a.m. (Eastern) on the Celtics official Facebook page
    • Basketball workouts designed for the younger Jr. Celtics crowd with an emphasis on getting active and energized
  • Fit to Win, powered by Sun Life: An event-driven community initiative that’s been re-imagined for the digital world. Visit our Twitter page (@celtics) for a weekly virtual workout conducted by the Boston Celtics strength coaches. Designed to encourage the importance of staying fit and healthy, each workout is also followed up with a different health tip each week.
  • Virtual Read to Achieve, presented by Southern New Hampshire University: Join Celtics mascot “Lucky” the Leprechaun as he offers a read-aloud of 12 different children’s books through an extension of the team’s Read to Achieve program. Each book is kindly provided by Barefoot Books and includes a set of relatable curriculum questions, offering a unique way for you to engage and entertain younger audiences.

New England Revolution "UHC at Home with the Pros"
  • Exercise videos you can do at home, hosted by Revolution players. Professional athletes are just like the rest of us right now – quarantined and using whatever they have around their home to stay fit. This video series features players demonstrating 1-2 minutes of drills for all ages to practice balance strength and footwork with items such as books, socks and shoes. 
NOTE: We are providing this information to our readers as we are part of the Red Sox Parents blogger initiative as well as being fans of all of our local sports teams - Go Red Sox, PawSox/WooSox, Revs, Celtics, Bruins, Pride, Cannons, etc.! No compensation was provided and all opinions are own own.

Friday, May 1, 2020

DORENITA is a great phone holder and charger for your mobile phone

With the new hands-free driving law that went into effect earlier this year, I was looking for a new phone mount that doubles as a phone charger for the newer wireless (qi-compatible) phones. I had the chance to test out a wireless charger car mount from DORENITA and it has proven to be reliable, flexible and has withstood the bumps and windy roads here in New England.

What I really like about the car mount is that you can attach it to your windshield, but then it telescopes quite far (just around 7.5 inches!) and can fit perfectly out of the way while still swiveling up to 270 degrees and then locking in place. If you'd rather mount it to an air vent, there is an included mount that is encased in silicone which allows it to grip to your car's air vent better than any car mount I've seen.

There are two buttons on the side which clamps the phone securely to the holder and will also release the phone for removal.

If you're looking for a car mount that is fully compatible with the recent generations of Apple and Samsung smartphones, this would be the one to get! For more information you can check them out on Amazon where the phone is currently on sale for $39.99 as of this writing.

NOTE: We were provided with a sample of the case to facilitate this review. No other compensation was provided.

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Thank you to our #HealthcareHeroes and a wonderful gesture by the Red Sox for @SomeGoodNews

Still frame from Youtube Video:
In these trying times, I only have the news up in order to catch the weather and the most important information when appropriate. I try not to watch it a bunch and prefer to find some good news or stories of the helpers in our communities.

There is a great new show on Youtube that was started by actor John Krasinski (a Massachusetts native) called "Some Good News" where he features various positive stories that his twitter followers mention.

On the most recent episode, he featured a few healthcare workers at a local Boston hospital to tell them how much he (and all of us) appreciate all of their hard work and dedication. He had a special surprise in store for them and brought David Ortiz, Big Papi, of the Boston Red Sox on the conference call and the Red Sox donated four seats at Fenway for life to healthcare workers who are on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic at Beth Israel Medical Center in Boston.

I don't know about you, but as I was watching the episode, I was quite moved by the kind gesture of the Red Sox. There are good people in these times and it was nice to see them rewarded.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Comcast Launches Xfinity Education Destination for Kids K-12 with Thousands of Free Resources #xfinitydads #partner

Comcast announced that it has made nearly 2,000 hours of programming and thousands of free titles available to Xfinity video customers to give children and parents quick and easy access to educational programming by grade level as part of the company’s comprehensive response to the COVID-19 crisis.

The collection is a joint effort with Common Sense Media, the leading source of entertainment and technology recommendations for families whose trusted age-based ratings and reviews are integrated into Xfinity on Demand. A subset of the education collection is also available on Xfinity Flex and across devices via the Xfinity Stream app and website.

“Today Xfinity is making thousands of hours of educational programming and resources available to our customers through Xfinity on Demand as we know how challenging it is for families right now who are suddenly homeschooling young children – many with both parents working, as well,” said Rebecca Heap, SVP of Video & Entertainment at Comcast. “The programming selected in partnership with Common Sense Media is available in one comprehensive destination organized by grade level to make it as easy as possible for parents to find what is most relevant to their family.”

Xfinity customers with X1 or Flex can say “Education” or, if their voice search language is set to Spanish, “EducaciĆ³n,” into the Xfinity Voice Remote to access content available to them by grades “K-2,” “3-5,” “6-8,” and “9-12” and also “for all ages” currently including:

  • Free programs from subscription video on demand services (SVODS) Bluprint, CuriosityStream, The Great Courses Signature Collection, Grokker Yoga Fitness, HISTORY® Vault, Kids Room and The Reading Corner.
  • Additional free adult continuing education programming from these SVODS focused on the “Mind,” “Body,” and “Soul” spanning biographies; podcasts on a range of topics including technology and business; yoga; dance; food and cooking; fitness; wellness; ballets and operas; and gardening.
  • Educational series from networks and streaming services including Animal Planet, HISTORY®, Nick Jr., PBS KIDS, Smithsonian Channel and more.
  • Spanish language programming available from networks including CBeebies, Discovery Familia and Kids Central.
  • Firsthand interviews and historical narratives from Voices of the Civil Rights Movement, Comcast’s signature commemorative programming initiative honoring the impact and legacy of the movement.

Additionally, Comcast has enlisted the guidance of Natascha Crandall, Ph.D., a psychologist and educator to program the content across English Language Arts, Math, Science, and Social Studies based on grade appropriate guidelines aligned with the current U.S. school curriculum.

“When schools close and other community places people congregate are off limits, it can feel overwhelming for families with kids, so we’ve partnered with Xfinity to curate a list of educational recommendations to help kids learn and keep them engaged during their time indoors,” said Ellen Pack, President of Common Sense.

Year round, Xfinity makes a safe and enjoyable kids and family entertainment experience a priority through a variety of features, including:

  • Kids Zone, which offers a safe environment for children to browse, shuffle and watch live TV, Xfinity On Demand content and DVR recordings that are appropriate for kids ages 12 and under.
  • Common Sense Media ratings and reviews, which help customers find recommendations that are right for their family.
  • Xfinity xFi, the Company’s simple, digital dashboard for Xfinity customers to personalize, troubleshoot, monitor, and control their home WiFi network, offers parental control features such as pausing WiFi and bedtime mode, as well as the ability to set up 30 different screen time schedules per profile, to help families manage screen and viewing time.

Beyond free education content and resources, Comcast has undertaken a comprehensive COVID-19 response inclusive of making its low-income Internet Essentials program free for new families for the first 60 days of enrollment, opening Xfinity WiFi hotspots across the country to anyone who needs them for free (including non-Xfinity Internet subscribers), pausing data plans, creating a COVID-19 news destination on X1 and Flex (in Spanish and English), and offering rolling free entertainment previews to Xfinity X1 and Flex subscribers.

NOTE: This release was provided by Comcast and I am posting it as I thought it would be beneficial for you, my readers! No compensation was provided.