Archive for Florida

19 May 2016

Tampa Screams For Ice Cream- For A Good Cause

No Comments Community Service, Florida, Giving Back, Tampa, Tampa Bay

Denali Moose Tracks is coming to Tampa to scoop out FREE Mayfield Dairy Farms ice cream for us- well, all of Tampa really! Oh, and did I mention that for each scoop of Moose Tracks we enjoy, they will be giving $1 to our friends at The Salvation Army of Tampa/Hillsborough County?! Definitely a reason to stop by and get some ice cream!

All you need to do is grab a bunch of people and come down to Lykes Gaslight Square Park on Friday, June 10 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m to take on the 10,000 Scoop Challenge. The goal: to give away ten-thousand scoops of Moose Tracks to raise $10,000 for the great work The Salvation Army is doing in our community. Together, we can make sure 10,000 scoops get eaten! 

The event is 100% free and open to the community! Hope to see you out in Tampa’s Downtown for a good cause!

Tama Mama Signature

 

27 Apr 2016

Sprinkles Cupcakes Opens in Tampa, Florida!

No Comments Florida, Tampa, Tampa Bay

 
When we walked into the pink cupcake store, my daughter went straight to the cupcake counter and started pointing at every beautiful cupcake she wanted to try! Lucky for us, we were able to indulge in many of the flavors that will be available to the citizens of Tampa (and Florida as this is the FIRST Sprinkles Cupcakes in the state!)

Toddler life decisions.

Read more

03 Apr 2016

Celebrate Earth Day in Tampa Bay with EcoFest!

No Comments Family Time, Florida, Tampa, Tampa Bay

Want a family-fun free event to take your kids to in April to celebrate Earth Day?

Head to EcoFest 2016 – Earth Day Tampa Bay! 

EcoFest Earth Day Tampa Bay

The 7th annual EcoFest will be held from 10:00 a.m. until 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 23rd at the Lowry Park bandshell.

EcoFest is a community event organized by Learning Gate Community School, the City of Tampa and the USF Patel College of Global Sustainability to celebrate the many businesses, organizations, and individuals in the Tampa Bay area dedicated to the principles of sustainability – Ecology, Equity and Economy.

This year’s event features:

·         Over 100 local vendors (artists, green living products & services, environmental organizations, alternative health practitioners, renewable energy specialists, organic farms and gardens, etc.)

·         Sustainability workshops

·         a ParKour Agility Course (created by an American Ninja Warrior participant)

·         a Yoga Zone (Three Yoga Studios with live music)

·         “Trash the Bag” Crafts and Kid Zone

·         Costume characters -sure to attract the kids- who will pose for photos with attendees including: super heroes such as Spiderman, princesses, Tampa Electric’s Manatee Viewing Center’s mascot – Molly the Manatee, Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful’s mascot – Pete the Pelican, and MOR-TV’s mascot – Stewie of Family Guy!

·         Drum circle

·         USF is supplying a Bull Runner Shuttle Bus to transport attendees to and from parking areas


For additional information click here to learn more about the City of Tampa’s EcoFest 2016!

20 Mar 2016

Easter Brunch In Tampa Bay

No Comments Adventures, Dining Out, Family Travel, Florida, Tampa, Tampa Bay

Easter Brunch is one of those meals that we look forward to all year. It’s relaxing, enjoyable with family and friends, and is always delicious.

We typically invite our family over, however, we decided we really wanted to relax this year and wanted to avoid the lines at the grocery store as well as the heat from my kitchen.  When I heard that Roy’s was having an Easter Brunch special, I jumped at the chance to actually relax on a holiday!  Cooking and preparing for any holiday with a large family is always a task, so I’m ok with splurging on a few holidays to let me really enjoy the holiday!

Guests can enjoy a two-course brunch starting at just $35.95 per person!

This impressive two-course brunch menu starting at just $35.95 per person is a dream. With complimentary House Made Sticky Buns followed by a choice of appetizer.

Irresistible Lobster & Shrimp Omelet with eggs, spinach, caramelized shallots and tomatoes, Roy’s Benedict made with either filet mignon or crab cakes served atop a cheddar bacon biscuit with shies béarnaise and Macadamia Nut Pancakes with caramel bananas are top on my list for choices and I want them all! 

It’s always nice to know that a special children’s menu will also be available for $12.95, making this a memorable event that’s sure to delight the whole family.

Brunch will start at 10 a.m. on Sunday, March 27 at locations nationwide, except Hawaii and Pebble Beach. To make reservations, please visit www.roysrestaurant.com as seating will be limited.

Don’t forget my favorite part of the meal!  A special cocktail to toast the occasion and your choices include a Mimosa, Blood Orange Screwdriver, or Hawaiian Martini. 

Don’t forget to call and reserve your table, for dinner on Easter Sunday, as you will also receive a $20 dining card to use during a future visit. We can’t wait to go back!

Roy’s Tampa

4342 W Boy Scout Blvd, Tampa, FL 33607 (Across from International Plaza)

(813) 873-7697

05 Mar 2016

Sorry, (Recess) Moms? No… Sorry, Florida Kids. NO RECESS FOR YOU! 

No Comments Florida, Kids, Parenting, Raising Children, School

Sorry, (recess) Moms? Sorry? Really Tampa Bay Times
IMG_5115.JPG

THESE are the people you should be addressing. Kids are people too.

I’m not into politics, or so I say to myself. I say that, but I’ve started to dive more into the rules, regulations and “politics” of what it takes to get something accomplished in order for it to become a law that might better the lives of kids. My kids, other people’s kids… Don’t you want to stand up for what’s right? Isn’t that how change ACTUALLY came about in so many historical movements? 

I became a part of the Recess Moms to help make a difference. These Moms were inspiring, hard working, smart and did not give up. And they still haven’t. There is always a new session on the horizon and an opportunity for change. 



My kids get recess. They are among the lucky ones in Florida. But what about those that don’t!? Why do some kids benefit and others don’t. Does it have to do with money? Test scores? Bad kids? Good kids? Too much to cover in one school day? If school is the work of the child, then every child should get a break. These are sweat shops and cash cows. These kids deserve to be treated better no matter where they go to school in public. 

This isn’t a laughing matter, however some of the Florida Senators this it is! Check out this video from the day the amendment to the bill is denied. Is this funny? Recess is just for kids, right? Everybody is watching you Senstors. 

Instead of “Sorry Recess Moms,” you should have began your article addressing the 6 year olds, the ACTUAL ones you are letting down. They can read now, you know.
How about this: 

Sorry kids of Florida. The people who are supposed to look out for your best interests, your parents, tried hard. Unfortunately, politicians who are SUPPOSED to represent your best interests – Florida Senators- have decided to vote against a measly 15 minutes in a day as you WORK for 6-7 HOURS, and will continue to be denied recess, playtime, free time and the opportunity to take a much needed break. Your parents were trying their hardest to help give you a voice so your request could be heard, but that didn’t work. Keep slaving away in the system until things can get worked out. 

Hopefully by the time we get this bill passed into law, your spirit as a child and love of school will have not been broken and can be mended back together. 

Sincerely, 

All The People In Suits Who Have No Clue What Actually Goes On In A Classroom 

PS. Your Mom did awesome and I’m sure she will try again, as Mothers always will fight for what’s best for her child.

This is how your Senators voted. Do you even know who your Senator is? If not click here. It’s very simple, if they voted N, they didn’t support the recess amendment being added to a multi-pronged Education Bill that was going to get a Floor vote. You might want to call and ask why? 

  

To read exactly what transpired and to see your YOUR Florida Senator voted, click here

04 Feb 2016

3rd annual Gridiron Kids Cooking Challenge

1 Comment Cooking, Family Time, Florida, Kids

If you read my blog regularly, you’ll know I love to cook with my kids. As my kids are getting older, they are starting to get more creative and adventurous with what they want to eat and cook!

The Dairy Council of Florida is hosting its 3rd annual Gridiron Cooking Challenge, a fun-filled food competition for elementary and middle school students throughout Florida. Now through February 29, students in groups of four are encouraged to create and submit an original recipe that features dairy products, such as milk, cheese and yogurt. The top four student teams in each Florida NFL market will compete for the grand prize – a $2,500 school prize pack and 4 tablets – at the Gridiron Cooking Challenge this spring.

The initiative is created and supported by the Florida Dairy Farmers and is part of Fuel Up to Play 60, an in-school nutrition and physical activity program launched by the National Dairy Council and NFL to help encourage today’s youth to lead healthier lives. For more information, visit floridamilk.com.

Good luck little chefs!

13 Jan 2016

Dinner in Orlando with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles at Nickelodeon Suites Resort

No Comments Adventures, Dining Out, Family Travel, Florida, Kids, Travel Tuesday

If you have TMNT fan in your house that it might be worth the trip to Orlando for dinner with your favorite turtles!
Antonio’s Pizza-Rama dinner featuring the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is available and open to the public this weekend January 15 – 17, 2016.

Details:
· Adults 11 and up: $33 plus tax

· Children 4 – 10: $17 plus tax

· Children 3 and under eat free from the buffet with an adult dining full fare

· 18% gratuity on parties of six or more

· Advanced dinner reservations are required, 407-387-5438

· Open to non-hotel guests

For more information and to make reservations visit the Nick Hotel in Orlando, Florida.

Image above from Nickelodeon Suites Resort website.

09 Jan 2016

Ringling Brothers Circus: A Picture Review

No Comments Adventures, Florida, Kids, Tampa, Tampa Bay

A super fun night! Filled with smiles, laughter, awe and excitement. Acrobatics, amazing feats that captured their attention for 2 hours! Ringling Brothers has put so much thought into every detail of this show, LEGENDS. When it comes to your city, I hope you’ll go enjoy the greatest show on Earth! Tip: Come early and get an up close VIP experience with clowns, acrobatics and more performers.


  


Pictures by Marisa Langford at the Ringling Brothers LEGENDS show at Amalie Arena in Tampa Bay Florida, kicking off the 2016 tour.

20 Dec 2015

Teaching Kids About Health and Fitness with Ringling Bros. Circus in Tampa

3 Comments Ad, Adventures, Family Travel, Florida, Giveaway, Sponsored, Tampa, Tampa Bay

Each year, we go to see the Circus! I am always in awe of the performers and what they are able to do! This year, they come to America with a 90-city tour, that begins here in Tampa Bay with their new show: Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus presents Legends! This show is set to let you eyes feast on fanciful and mysterious acts that will have you in amazement! This is still “the greatest show on Earth!”


My kids have visited the circus each year and it is always a new show when it comes to town. Never the same. Yet the acts in each show are just amazing to watch! They are all so talented and so athletic that I often wonder if my 6 and 10 year old gymnast will one day run away with the circus because they have a talent that they have learned from a young age!

I learned of a program that is supported by Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey: Circus Fit! They have partnered with the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition to help children remember how FUN it is to be FIT! They have a curriculum that it is FREE and available for download so that teachers and community leaders can implement bringing fitness, nutrition and healthy living to classrooms and after-school programs anywhere!

Did you know that Circus Fit can help educators with lesson plans, interactive video clips, handouts and a host of additional support materials and information that will help you set your students or youth group on the path to a physically fit and healthy lifestyle!

My passion project, Fit Kids Playground, has taught me that fitness should be made fun for kids and coming from a clown, childhood obesity is no laughing matter! This is a wonderful way for kids to want to have fun, be silly and get fit all at the same time! I hope that more teachers, preschool coordinators or community leaders learn about this opportunity and curriculum that is available to everyone for free. It is a great way to head to the circus and talk about how all the acts use healthy habits to keep them doing the amazing things that they can do.

If you haven’t got your tickets yet, an insiders tip is that opening night is typically less in cost, but there is only one show.
There is also an additional add on this year! Ticketholders can purchase an upgrade and go backstage with a VIP Behind the Scenes Tour of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey. The backstage experience includes an insider look at props and wardrobe, an up close and personal encounter with the animals and a chance to meet stars from the show. Fans will also have an opportunity to take pictures and learn educational fun facts. To take advantage of this once-in-a-lifetime experience, just log on to ringlingbros.expapp.com from your iPhone or Android smartphone, and provide your name, e-mail and phone number to become a VIP circus insider.

This is a limited ticket and allows you access to a personal and once-in-a-lifetime experience that will have your family walking with clowns, petting elephants, shaking hands with the Ringmaster and standing in the infamous motorcycle Globe of Steel! How fun!

And of course, for any show, arrive an hour early for an All Access Pre-show that starts an hour before the show. Come down to the arena floor and meet the performers of The Greatest Show On Earth, get autographs, take photos and enter to win a one-of-a-kind pachyderm painting.  Take lots of pictures and be sure to show them off to your friends! It is really like you were a part of the circus!

We have been provided with a 1 family-4-pack for tickets to the Tampa Bay show happening January 6 at the Amalie Arena. 8 shows in all. We are so excited to help kids push away the screen with “the greatest show on Earth!”

a Rafflecopter giveaway

16 Dec 2015

Ways to Raise Caring Kids: Giving Back During the Holiday Season

No Comments Adventures, Florida, Holidays, Kids, Parenting, Raising Children, Studio 10 TV Segment, Tampa, Tampa Bay, Uncategorized

You might not think your children understand the “true meaning” of the holidays, but it is never to early to start teaching your kids gratitiude and compassion towards others, especially during this time of year. 

  
With Santa on their mind and toys swimming through their head, often times it is good to take a step back and think about how you can give to others. Take some time to give back as a family or brighten someone’s day and take advantage of all the teachable moments along the way too.

 Shelby and I had the opportunity to be on Studio 10 TV in Tampa to talk about how we give back and ways kids can help make spirits bright during the holidays for others! Trust me, the kids will love it!

If you missed the segment here’s a link and what you might have missed!

Giving Back With Kids on Studio 10 TV 

  
Together as a Family

Activity: Shop Together & Donate Toys or Food

Tampa Connection: Metropolitan Ministries

  

 
As always, modeling the behavior you want your children to demonstrate is a wonderful way to teach your kids about kindness and compassion. We donate our gently used toys and clothes throughout the year and have the kids actively participate. The holidays are also a perfect time to go on a family outing to a store and shop together with others in mind. Adopt a family or donate a meal you’ll be enjoying. You’d be surprised how involved the kids will become in choosing toys or food for others. Talking about what you are doing will always lead to more questions and many teachable moments.

 

Teachable Moments

Activity: Operation Christmas Child

Locations: Anywhere

Kids love to pick out gifts and give them to others. We’ve used Operation Christmas Child to talk about others far away that might not have what we have here in America. We participate and even track our box to see what country it will be going to and then we learn about their country too. Last year, Operation Christmas Child delivered over 10 million boxes in over 100 countries.

 

Parent Challenge: Set aside money for them to help choose a charity that would make them feel good about giving.

 

 

The Power of One

Activity: Start a Drive

As a Girl Scout Leader, we have realized that the power of one combined with that of the power of others, amazing things can happen. Encourage your child to start a drive that might benefit a group they might be passionate about in your community! With so many non-profits to choose from in the community, I bet they didn’t know there are so many ways to help others!

 

Remember the Intangibles

Activity: Brighten Someone’s Day

Nursing Homes, Neighbors, Family & Friends

  

 
Time is a most precious gift to give. Weather you spend it baking, making a card or just sharing a smile, kids should always remember that it is the thought that counts. Brighten someone’s day by baking some cookies and delivering the package to your neighbors. Go visit relatives that you might not see often. Plan to sign carols at a nursing home. Stay a while and talk to the residents. Make a simple gift to give them. The thoughtfulness of the act will speak volumes to someone else. Smile!

  

 Teaching Thankfulness

Activity: Thank You Cards

Your child might be fortunate enough to receive gifts from many familiy members and friends! Teach gratitude by making thank you notes fun! Go around the table at meal time to share what everyone is thankful for. As the kids grow older, it is the hope that instilling compassion, kindness and gratitude that they will remember and continue to pass it forward in life. Giving doesn’t have to be confined to the holidays, there are plenty of ways to give year round too.