ChipBits for Jump Starting Your 2018

New Year Hacks, 2018, Mom Blog, Healthy New Year, Essential Oils, Declutter, Organize, Reading, Water, Yoga, Get Off Your Phone, Tickle Fights, Bullet Journaling, BuJo, Sharpie, ChocolateGarden, Giveaway, Mabels Labels
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I don’t believe in New Year’s resolutions. No one needs more pressure. However, I do believe a new year brings renewal, revival and the opportunity to change and improve.

With that said, at the end of January, I present:

The Mint Chip Mama’s

2018 ChipBits (sorry) for the New Year

Hopefully some of these will resonate with you. My simple goal is to change your RBF to a smile once per day. I mean – admit it, my bad joke worked already, right?

Attainable goals, people.

Attainable.

Goals.

The Mint Chip Mama - ChipBits for 2018

Read

My daughter is in second grade. She’s an avid reader. One day she asked me to join her – citing I always look at her and say I miss reading. Of course, my first response was I’m too busy putting away laundry/cooking/cleaning, but instead I said: YES! We sat together, all snuggled up, and read. Now we do it almost every night and guess what – I’ve read whole books of delicious chick lit, just like in the old days. It’s awesome. What a gift she has given me.

The Mint Chip Mama - ChipBits for 2018

Organize Clothing Drawers Vertically

This tip comes from Barbara Reich’s book Secrets of an Organized Mom (see above, I read a book!). Organizing your drawers vertically will uncover clothes you forgot about and help you easily dump clothes you no longer want. Not gonna to lie, now opening my drawers makes me smile whereas before it was just stressful. I can see every item in there instead of just a big, fat, messy pile. Genius!

Declutter

I’ve been trying to declutter a little bit, every day. One drawer, one bag of clothes, one shelf – but actively – only one thing. Then I’m done, it’s better, and it wasn’t too overwhelming. If it takes a year for my house to finally be tidy, so be it. Organizing feels good. I firmly believe more space for you to look at means more space for your mind and less stress for your eyes.

The Mint Chip Mama - ChipBits for 2018

Drink More Water

I’m a big fan of drinking water. If you know me, you’ve most likely mocked (granted, along with me) my insanely large Aladdin Classic Insulated Mason Tumbler 32oz that I bring everywhere. I probably drink 4 of these a day and I’m still always thirsty. Water, water, water. It’s the juice of life. Plus it’s the size of my head so I can’t lose it.

The Mint Chip Mama - ChipBits for 2018

Essential Oils

I’m still a newbie and don’t know if I buy into it yet 100%. I’ve been using them for a year and at least my house smells nice. With flu/strep/cootie season in full gear, I’m extra interested in making blends like the Marseille Vinegar/Four Thieves’ Vinegar recipe (similar to Thieves or On Guard). My diffuser is working like a boss. I’m having fun pretending to be an apothecary. Sometimes I wear an eye patch for kicks (joking).

Yoga

This one weekly class is my gift to myself. It’s madness before and madness after, but for those 45 minutes – it’s heaven. If I miss a week or two I feel it – everywhere. If you’ve never tried it, check it out. If you’re in the area – you have an open invitation to join me.

The Mint Chip Mama - ChipBits for 2018 80s Phone

PUT YOUR PHONE DOWN

I doubt it comes as a surprise – we’re all obsessed with our phones. Guess what? PUT IT DOWN. I’ve made a conscious effort to put my phone down when my kids are awake. I want to be present with them. I want to listen to them. I want to play with them. My phone distracts me 100%, 100% of the time. That’s terrible and unfair. I guarantee whatever I’m looking at is not as important as who is in front of me. So if I don’t get back to you quickly, that’s why.  If it’s an emergency, call me on my house phone. Yes, I have a house phone, and yes, it’s the one above, and yes, it still lights up when it rings.

Tickle Fights

Kids always want you to play with them – eh. Tickle the heck out of them instead. They always ask for more. Why? I don’t know, I hate being tickled, but kids are dumb. It’s also a nice way to get out your aggression. Plus, try staying in a bad mood when your kid laughs that deep laugh from their belly that’s the best sound on Earth.

The Mint Chip Mama - ChipBits for 2018

Bullet Journal

I read about Bullet Journaling in Parents Magazine. I love the idea of physically writing down everything I need to do in one book. Plus I LOVE the idea of jotting down special things that happen so I can actually remember my life (read: this can count as my 3rd kid’s baby book… right!?). Since my scattered to-do lists are causing more stress than help, I’m in – full stop. Shockingly since I started, I’ve been getting more stuff done! And damn it feels good to cross something off your list with a pen.

The Mint Chip Mama - ChipBits for 2018

Use a Sharpie

I started using a Sharpie marker every time I need to write something down – in my everyday life, for no reason. It’s so wrong, it’s right. I don’t know why it feels so dangerous, but it does. And everyone agrees and turns red when I ask if they also think it feels good. Join the rebellion.

The Mint Chip Mama - ChipBits for 2018 Godiva Mint Chocolate Chip Dessert Truffles

Eat More Chocolate

Oh geez – life is short. Shut up and eat a piece of chocolate. Dark chocolate is healthy (just repeat that). Quality here, not quantity – one little piece of good chocolate or a nice little truffle, that’s the stuff. Chocolate makes you smile. I promise.

The Mint Chip Mama - ChipBits for 2018

Gardening

Gardening is relaxing, cathartic and therapeutic. Last week I laughed at “Houseplant Appreciation Day”. Then took a group shot of my plants… which led to me repotting three… which led to me feeling really happy… which led to me trying a science experiment with bulbs in my kitchen (which is working!).

So there you have it. I hope you’ll try at least one of these ideas and that they’ll work for you too. If nothing else, if I can help cut down the time you need to hide in the closet – that’s a win. If not, I get it, maybe in 2019. But I bet you can make eating a piece of chocolate happen today.

*****GIVEAWAY*****

The Mint Chip Mama - ChipBits for a New Year

Start 2018 as a Organizing WINNER!

To help, my friend’s at Mabel’s Labels have offered to give away a set of Storage Bin Labels, Write Away! Labels for Home, or Pantry & Kitchen Labels (winners choice) to one lucky reader of The Mint Chip Mama!

To enter: Comment below what your favorite hack or secret is for a better 2018!

Winner chosen 2/1/18 at 4:30pm EST.

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Diggerland’s HUGE Holiday Sale – 12/15!

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Ten Reasons Why I Love Diggerland

The Mint Chip Mama - Diggerland

If you read my 2017 Gift Guide, you can see a large chunk of my gift suggestions were experiential. They are the best gifts – they don’t have to be cleaned up, they can be enjoyed by the whole family, and they last for days or even years.

One of my favorite experiences – and yes, it’s an experience vs. just an amusement park – is Diggerland, in West Berlin, NJ. Why you ask? Well, have YOU ever driven a full size construction vehicle? Nope? Me neither. But I did and it was AWESOME. Oh yeah, my kids liked it there too.

So as we approach Diggerland’s HUGE 72 hour holiday sale – launching Friday, December 15th, 2017 – I’ve present you:

The Top Ten Reasons Why I Love Diggerland.

  1. Your kids can drive cars by themselves and feel cool.

2. You can play go-fish with an excavator.

The Mint Chip Mama - Diggerland

3. A construction carousel – yes!

The Mint Chip Mama - Diggerland

4. You can compare your kid’s height to a really big wheel.

The Mint Chip Mama - Diggerland

5. You can ride a little train down a windy trail.

The Mint Chip Mama - Diggerland

6. Lots of shady rest spots.

The Mint Chip Mama - Diggerland

7. You can spin around in the air in an excavator.

 

8. You can scoop dirt – not in your backyard.

The Mint Chip Mama - Diggerland

9. This big chair.

The Mint Chip Mama - Diggerland

10. Endless smiles.

The Mint Chip Mama - Diggerland

So for the gift that keeps on digging, check out Diggerland, and especially their flash sale on December 15th. What a cool mom/dad/aunt/uncle/grandparent/sibling/neighbor you’d be to give a gift of riding crazy big construction trucks to a small, small person.

My kids are counting down the minutes until Diggerland re-opens on March 17th, 2018!

The Mint Chip Mama - Diggerland

HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

The Mint Chip Mama’s 2017 Holiday Gift Guide!

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The Mint Chip Mama - 2017 Holiday Gift Guide

#holidaygiftguide #mtholiday

Can you believe the holidays are right around the corner? Thanksgiving is creeping up quickly and before we know it snow will be falling and presents will be everywhere!

The Mint Chip Mama - 2017 Holiday Gift Guide

I put a lot of time and love into my blog posts and Facebook page (where I post something fun daily). So many places and products have crossed my path that I absolutely LOVE. Thought it would be fun to share them with you and help in the eternal search for holiday gifts.

The Mint Chip Mama - 2017 Holiday Gift Guide

I also think the best gifts are experiences so you’ll see that’s the biggest section below. How much would YOU love if someone got you a gift certificate to one of the local attractions you’ve been dying to try? To me that’s the best gift – it keeps on giving all year long and you don’t have to find a place to put it in your closet.

Enjoy!

Experiential Gifts Because You Have Enough Stuff

Camelback Mountain Skiing & Aquatopia Indoor Waterpark in Tannersville, PA

Crayola Experience in Easton, PA

Diggerland in West Berlin, NJ

Eden Resort & Suites in Lancaster, PA

Dutch Wonderland in Lancaster, PA

Splish Splash in Calverton, NY

Cherry Crest Adventure Farm in Lancaster, PA

Whitaker Science Center in Harrisburg, PA

Turkey Hill Experience in Columbia, PA

Adventureland Season Pass in Farmingdale, NY

Sesame Place in Langhorne, PA

The Ride Manhattan Tour (Midtown or downtown)

Big Apple Circus tickets

ParkWhiz (nationwide)

NYBG Holiday Train Show in Bronx, NY

Wildlife Conservation Society Membership in New York City

Puffs The Play in Manhattan

Hershey Park in Hershey, PA

Spoons Ice Cream and Cereal Bar, in Seaford, NY

The Mint Chip Mama - 2017 Holiday Gift Guide

Books

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fck

The Complete Book of Fashion History

The Golden Girls Adult Coloring Book

How Not To Hate Your Husband After Kids

The Little Book of Hygge

American Presidents Activity Book

My Very Own Trucks

Adventures in History (Playmobil) 

Tuck Everlasting

Toilet Trivia – The 1980s

The Mint Chip Mama - 2017 Holiday Gift Guide

For Your Male or Female Friend Who Has Everything

The Swankey Beverage Tote 

Pic’s Peanut Butter

Bug Bite Thing

Raisels

Luxe Bidet

GH Cretors Popped Corn

Aladdin Glass Mason Jar Drink Dispenser, 32 Oz Insulated Tumbler & Mason Cups

Avocado Hugger

Barbuzzo Wine & Martini Glass

A Hole Paperweight

Bracelet Flask

World’s Softest Socks

Stainless Steel Drinking Straws

Eco Nuts Wool Dryer Balls 

Jessica’s Natural Foods Granola

O-Venture Key Ring

Oilz+ Shea Butter Moisturizer from Scrubz Body

Bondi Unique Flexible Cell Phone Holder

Fitz and Hen Cheeky Charm Jewelry

Instant Pot (also perfect for the new mom to make baby food!)

Alexa Echo Dot

Amazon Prime

For The New Mom

Fridababy Bitty Bundle

UPPAbaby Universal Infant Carseat Cabana

REMI – Baby monitor, sleep trainer, nightlight, bluetooth speaker

Babyganics products – especially the individually wrapped Hand Sanitizing Wipes

Fisher-Price Healthy Care Booster Seat

A subscription to Amazon Family 

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For the Seasoned Mom

GB Pockit Stroller

Mabels Labels

Mixed Pears Food Scissor

Fun Stuff For Kids

Tomy John Deere Lawn & Garden Set

Crayola Color In Socks

H2OGo! Splash Blobz

NameBubbles Customized Wall Decals

Cobra Paw

Kudo Banz

Sleeping Queens

TriceraTACO Taco Holder

Roller Coaster Challenge Logic & Building Game

Perfection

Table-Time Look & Learn Tablecloth

RSDubs Ribbons Hair Accessories

Moluk Plui Bath Toy

Battleship

Stand N Swing with chain

Sequence Game

Plus-Plus Building Set

The Mint Chip Mama - 2017 Holiday Gift Guide

For Your Breastfeeding Buddy

PumpEase Handsfree Pumping Bra

Glamourmom Nursing Tanks

The Comfy Cradle

Evenflo Breastpump

The First Years Breastflow Milk Storage Organizer

May everyone’s holiday season be filled with joy!

Some links above are affiliate links.

The Harsco Science Center at The Whitaker Center – a Top Family Destination in PA!

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The Mint Chip Mama - The Harsco Science Center at The Whitaker Center - a Top Family Destination in PA!

@whitakercenter #whitakercenter Facebook

As a kid I was completely obsessed with science centers. They were my favorite place to go. On a class trip, with my parents, any way I could get to a hands-on science center simply made my day. The same excited butterflies recently entered my stomach when I found out The Harsco Science Center at The Whitaker Center – located in Harrisburg, PA was in the path of our family vacation.

The Mint Chip Mama - The Harsco Science Center at The Whitaker Center - a Top Family Destination in PA!

As authentic as a good old hands on science center can get – my kids (and let’s be honest, I) had THE best time. OK, my husband too… and the baby. So we were five for five! We started our day on the third floor playing with light, sound, air, and everyone’s favorite – the giant bubble machine.

The Mint Chip Mama - The Harsco Science Center at The Whitaker Center - a Top Family Destination in PA!

We then moved on to what would be our home for the next two hours – the “tot” area – KidsPlace. I could not get my kids – ages seven and three – out of this amazing area filled with everything a kid could want to exercise their imagination.

The Mint Chip Mama - The Harsco Science Center at The Whitaker Center - a Top Family Destination in PA!

Even the baby got in to it!

The Mint Chip Mama - The Harsco Science Center at The Whitaker Center - a Top Family Destination in PA!

Between the play ambulance, theatre (with multiple background curtains and really nice props), water play area, fish tank, big brick & slide structure, they were engaged and playing and content as can be. Guess what we were able to do? Sit down and just watch!

If The Harsco Science Center was nothing but this one area I’m convinced they would still think this was the highlight of our trip.

Also in this area was my favorite accessory to any good family venue – a nursing room! Part a mom’s refuge from her own children and part a quiet, private, cheerful place to breastfeed, it got a full A+ from me!

The Mint Chip Mama - The Harsco Science Center at The Whitaker Center - a Top Family Destination in PA!

Heading down a flight, brought us to the “Move It” area with car races, die cut machines, and tons of play experiences.

Followed by the circus themed “Carnival of Health”, that was filled with interactive exercise games as far as the eye could see.

The Mint Chip Mama - The Harsco Science Center at The Whitaker Center - a Top Family Destination in PA!

Heading down another flight brought us to “Forces of Nature” where we learned about weather (including a hurricane simulation machine) and gravity. The kids loved lifting thousands of pounds with pulleys and having very fast wind blown in their faces! Since the last few months have been filled with crazy weather occurrences it was nice to have hands on demonstrations so the kids could actually learn about them.

The Mint Chip Mama - The Harsco Science Center at The Whitaker Center - a Top Family Destination in PA!

But here – the pièce de résistance – was the “Backstage Studio”, including a stop animation lab. Upon seeing this, my husband became giddy. It was quite possibly the most excited I’ve ever seen him at a place for kids. Normally the guy telling us it’s time to go – he sat down and created a whole movie for our kids which he proudly played. Forget them; I was excited to watch HIM enjoy it so much!

The Mint Chip Mama - The Harsco Science Center at The Whitaker Center - a Top Family Destination in PA!

What we thought would be a fun back-up – in case of a rainy day while visiting amusement parks – turned out to be the highlight of our trip. I can’t recommend The Harsco Science Center enough if you will be in the Harrisburg, Lancaster, or Pennsylvania Dutch area. Rain or shine, this place will be a hit.

The Mint Chip Mama - The Harsco Science Center at The Whitaker Center - a Top Family Destination in PA!

As if their permanent exhibits aren’t cool enough, they have visiting exhibits as well (while we were there it was dinosaurs!). If you live in the area you can also take advantage of the wonderful programs they offer like Little Learners and a Parent-Child STEM Adventure program for kids 3-5. They also have Girl Scout programs and Girls in STEM programs.

The Mint Chip Mama - The Harsco Science Center at The Whitaker Center - a Top Family Destination in PA!

With the holidays coming, definitely check out the Holiday Celebrations including the seasonal Whitaker Wonderland – a sock skate rink, “snowball” pit, and Cranky Cars – from November 17, 2017 – January 28, 2018.

The Mint Chip Mama - The Harsco Science Center at The Whitaker Center - a Top Family Destination in PA!

Venturing past the little ones – The Whitaker Center offers movies on the giant screen (Central PA’s biggest if you’re keeping track!) and live performances (including comedians and musicians) at the Sunoco Performance Theater.

The Mint Chip Mama - The Harsco Science Center at The Whitaker Center - a Top Family Destination in PA!

We really did have the best time. Plus the kids got to learn a little science (ha ha- tricked them!). I can’t recommend this place enough. A great stop for Fall, Winter, or a place to add to your itinerary for next summer.

The Mint Chip Mama - The Harsco Science Center at The Whitaker Center - a Top Family Destination in PA!

***GIVEAWAY***

I’m not the only one who wants you to experience this amazing place, the kind people at The Whitaker Center want you to come as well! They’ve generously offered to give away to one lucky reader of The Mint Chip Mama a Family Four Pack of tickets!

To win, please comment below – what your kids would be the most excited to see (or learn about) at The Whitaker Center!

Winner will be picked Wednesday, November 1st, 2017, 5pm EST.

Please also take a moment to follow my blog & like my Facebook page where I share a little something special every day!

Kudo Banz – Wearable Positive Feedback!

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The Mint Chip Mama - Kudo Banz

If you’re a parent, I’m quite sure you’re familiar with sticker charts.

I am too.

Little pieces of bribery that bring so much happiness to both parties.

When I met the nice people from Kudo Banz last week I was very, very impressed by their expansion of this age old positive reinforcement tradition. Their idea was to create a wearable line of bracelets with all kinds of fun charms that your child can earn (instead of a boring sticker), and then unlock special, parent inputted rewards on their accompanying app.

The Mint Chip Mama - Kudo Banz

Is your kid a fro-yo addict? Well earn a Kudo Banz charm and you can unlock a special trip after dinner. Love swimming? Earn a charm, unlock a special trip to the pool! The parent gets to create the special treats the child can unlock on the app after the child earns the charm. They can be as unique as you want because who knows your kid better than you!

I tested out a sample with my three year old son. He is most recently obsessed with wearables and as you can imagine grabbed this right out of my hands.

The Mint Chip Mama - Kudo Banz

In the Starter Pack – which is enough for two children – you get a hardcover storybook (with a great story of a clever Grandma teaching her grand kids how much fun it is to earn positive reinforcements), two bracelets (with three Kudo spots each), six Kudo charms, a carrying pouch and the Kudo Banz app.

The Mint Chip Mama - Kudo Banz

You can also expand your set with other fun charms – my son’s favorites were the dinosaurs and superheros.

The Mint Chip Mama - Kudo Banz

It was great – the next day we organically found ourselves in a situation where he needed to behave for a few hours (that was a HUGE ask) but since he was chomping at the bit for the Kudo Banz I had me a strong bargaining chip. Know what? He actually behaved!

The next morning we opened the box – met by much excitement, and carefully chose the red bracelet.

The Mint Chip Mama - Kudo Banz

Next, he got to pick the type of charm he wanted and to pull it out from the mystery bag (this was so exciting to him I can’t convey it in words).

The Mint Chip Mama - Kudo Banz

He got a blue dinosaur. It was pretty amazing.

The Mint Chip Mama - Kudo Banz

Finally, we put it on his bracelet!

The Mint Chip Mama - Kudo Banz

Bam! Earned positive reinforcement. Now, he wants to know what he can do next to earn another one. I have to admit, it is pretty genius. It was great watching him show his bracelet with pride to everyone we met the next day. HE earned it. HE picked it. HE’s wearing it. I love it!

The app is a great component as well. The parent can choose between three and eight rewards for the child to earn unlocking something different with each charm.

You can also fully customize the rewards wheel the child “spins” and track their progress on the colorful map! They had me at using his picture as the “start” and “end”.

Fun for parents, fun for kids, and maybe with this – they’ll actually listen.

I wonder if it would work on my husband… you took out the garbage, you get a charm! Kidding honey..

Cherry Crest Farm – A Great Family Destination!

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The Mint Chip Mama - Cherry Crest Farms

We were so lucky to visit Cherry Crest Farm on our last trip to Lancaster, PA. We saw the farm last year as we passed by in the Strasburg Railroad, but it wasn’t until a friend highly recommended it that we made it a “must see” this time around. I get why, this place was fantastic!

To be honest, we loved it even more than expected. From the huge and legit corn maze (read: we had to sit through a corn maze orientation), to the tons of “old school” games and rides and slides, to the local food, to the pig races – we had to pull the kids out of there.

We began our day immediately heading to the Pedal Cart Track where my daughter, who is notorious for wanting to drive anything anyone will let her – got her fill.

The Mint Chip Mama - Cherry Crest Farms

Next, we headed to The Amazing Maze to see what the hubbub was about. As Corn Maze first-timers, we were really impressed and opted for the beginner trail with our three kids – ages 7, 3 and 1. Besides seeing real ears of corn growing in the real corn husks, there were little hidden surprises and fun “corny” signs everywhere! My kids loved finding these Ninja Warrior places, or fun maze puzzle piece stations.

Completely worth mentioning here is the love Cherry Crest Farm puts into this maze. This year’s theme was Charlotte’s Web and from an aerial view that’s just what you got. Plus with color coded ropes in the maze you could tell which part of the design you were in the whole time. Their 22 years of a-maze-ing designs are proudly displayed at the entrance.

Next, we headed to “The Courtyard” Area. Here my kids spent a TON of time playing with the Rubber Duck Race and going through the Straw Bale Maze. When my daughter told me she wanted to go on their “Website” I took a moment to say we’re not looking on phones while here. Then I saw her pointing and laughed. You have to say, Cherry Crest Farm has a good sense of humor!

The Mint Chip Mama - Cherry Crest Farms

But the piece d’resistance of this area was definitely the Lil Wagon Express. We went on it many, many, many times. But it is not just a wagon ride, it is a scavenger hunt to find hidden animals along the way. My son loved finding them. Every. Single. Time. (Hint, they were made of wood and didn’t move).

The Mint Chip Mama - Cherry Crest Farms

For the moms in the crowd I have to take a moment to compliment Cherry Crest Farm for not only having a lovely Baby Changing Area and Nursing Suite, but a bathroom stocked with what’s needed when it’s needed. You know what I mean. No quarters necessary (thank you!).

Enroute to the expansive area up the hill called “The Barnyard”, we stopped to take a picture on the Bucking Bronco. Not sure they made it the full 8 seconds, but Luke Perry would be proud.

This area was amazing! We could have spent an entire day just here. My kids high-tailed it to the Barnyard Jump for some intense jumping and then moved on to the Hay Chute Slide & Straw Bale Racer. The kids were able to walk up the hill themselves with their burlap sacks and then come shooting down. This was done a dozen times. I was ok with that because I didn’t have to walk up the hill even once (read: parenting win).

The Mint Chip Mama - Cherry Crest Farms

Next, my daughter tried the Giant Slinger. Now this is mean, but my favorite part was the power of the sling shot’s backfire shooting her onto her tush in a very surprising situation. She was not as amused as I was…

As big builder fans, our next stop was the Lil Cabin Builders area. Here the kids made life-size cabins out of huge Lincoln Logs. Next, they tried out their newly chiseled muscles on the Post Pounders and all the fun games out and about in the area.

The Mint Chip Mama - Cherry Crest Farms

Finally, we caught a pig race and wanted desperately to make it over to the new Battle Zone but just didn’t have enough time. But this is a good problem to have, it means we have to go back!

The Mint Chip Mama - Cherry Crest Farms

With three distinct seasons at Cherry Crest Farm– Spring, Summer, and Fall we can easily return and get to do even more. They’re open until November 4th, 2017 this season and honestly, I’m dying to go back for the Flashlight Maze and Pumpkin Festival. Plus – spoiler alert – the Fall has campfires and s’mores!

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They have some pretty unique events too throughout the year, including a Facebook Fan Day – where admission is free if you liked their page. I don’t think I’ve ever seen that before!The Mint Chip Mama - Cherry Crest Farms

In my opinion, with the weather now cooler, and the summer traffic gone, Fall seems like the best time to visit Cherry Crest Farm. But then again, anytime would be a good time to go. Oh, Cherry Crest Farm – you had me at fresh squeezed lemonade and fudge.

The Mint Chip Mama - Cherry Crest Farms

***GIVEAWAY***

The lovely people at Cherry Crest Farm want you to visit too! They are offering one lucky reader of The Mint Chip Mama a family four pack of tickets!

To win, please comment below with the activity your kids are the most excited to try at Cherry Crest Farm and why!

Winner chosen Wednesday, September 27th, 2017 at 5pm EST.

Back to School 2017 with Momtrends!

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Back to School 2017!The Mint Chip Mama Back to School 2017 - Momtrends

#MomtrendsSchool

I’m not sure how the summer is almost over already and we are talking about school again. The good news is – for us moms who live vicariously through our children – we can still share in the excitement of new products! As a blogger I’m so lucky to be invited to fun events like the Momtrends Back to School Bash that took place last week in Manhattan. Without further ado, I present to you – fun Back to School items for your 2017 school year!

The Mint Chip Mama Back to School 2017 - MomtrendsI love when brands from overseas come to the US and still maintain their country’s look. Orchestra French Fashion for Kids does just this. With great quality and even better prices (omg! the sales they’re running right now!) you can dress your child like a little croissant, setting them apart from their friends. Chock full of tons of choices, my favorite was this super soft Junior shirt that knots in the front. I’m excited to use the $100 gift certificate I won to outfit my kids… and maybe myself too!

The Mint Chip Mama Back to School 2017 - Momtrends

My kids happen to LOVE raisins. They also happen to love watermelon. When I saw these cute packaged Raisels I knew they’d be in heaven. Raisels are sour, fruit-flavored golden raisins grown in California and infused with 100% RDI of Vitamin C. They were so delicious I couldn’t stop thinking about them. I was excited to watch my daughter’s face the next day when she tried them. She loved them as much as I had expected! Individually packaged and so eye popping Raisels are a great addition to any lunch bag.

Of course you can’t talk about Back to School without actual school products. I LOVED these bluetooth emoji speakers and lipstick highlighters from Staples. I also love this shark backpack and matching folder. It’s the perfect size for my son entering pre-K.

The Mint Chip Mama Back to School 2017 - Momtrends

The ever evolving American Girl world is moving on up with the ages with this new set of Smart Girl’s Guides including A Smart Girl’s Guide: Drama, Rumors & Secrets: Staying True to Yourself in Changing Times and A Smart Girl’s Guide to Liking Herself, Even on the Bad Days. These books seem appealing not only to the pre and pre, pre teens but should be mandatory reading for some of their mothers too (oops! did I say that?).

My baby loved these new snacks from Nosh and I LOVED the packaging. Look at these faces! How can you say no to those faces? All of their munchables are made with all natural, certified organic ingredients (like premium Japonica Rice) in fun, foodie flavors (like beet & strawberry). Their website has a great feature to find out the right product for your needs.

Another delicious brand, Kite Hill, was both new to me and an immediate favorite. All of their dairy free products were DELICIOUS with their cream cheese style spread being my favorite. Like I want to rub it on my face good. Even more exciting to the fans who flocked the table were the yogurt tubes (above) that were making their public debut! Coming to stores at the end of August, these almond milk yogurts are not to be missed.

The Mint Chip Mama Back to School 2017 - Momtrends

We were lucky enough to have a patch bar waiting for us from Twelve Little – a great bag company with all kinds of beautiful coordinating items. I of course picked the pizza patch. This large, insulated lunch bag will be a great addition to our school bag army.

One of the most creative displays was from Name Bubbles. Set up like a large lost and found, they had items in a big bin that we had to look through to find which one was ours. Not only did I “lose” this great mint water bottle, I “found” this awesome unicorn name label! Clearly these tie-dye labels are my favorite, but I have to admit I LOVE these personalized wall decals even more!

The Mint Chip Mama Back to School 2017 - Momtrends

If your mornings are anything like mine (read: hectic) you may also be excited to see these Morning Rounds from Ozery Bakery. With fun flavors like cranberry orange your french toast can get to the next level. Even better for my crew are the One Bun rounds for our pizza making nights. Pizza patch… pizza making… Do you see a pattern?

Hand washing and smelling nice are two things not to be missed when starting a new year. I was excited to get some new Bath & Body Works products to try. Their foaming soaps are some of my favorites. Extra credit here for the mint flavor!

I don’t actually know if this product was a fun add on to Raisels or something for us to learn about but I literally screamed when I saw it. As a HUGE fan of the often hard to find collapsible lunch container I freaked out to find this in my hands. Go Raisels!

The Mint Chip Mama Back to School 2017 - Momtrends

As we all know school is demanding and it is so important that our kids take a break to play every now and then. These games from Hasbro – like Mouse Trap, Cranium Sculpt-it, or one of my all time favorites – Perfection – will give them the break they need. I love finding pockets of time to play games with my kids. Not always easy with crazy schedules, and you know – general exhaustion, but sitting and playing games is something we all love.

The Mint Chip Mama Back to School 2017 - Momtrends

And there you have it! Fun products, delicious food, new companies, what more could we as Moms want for the new school year? Except maybe a few more hours in our day…!

Happy Back to Schooling!