Jul 28, 2016

Keeping Your Kids Safe on a Disney Vacation (and what to do before they get lost)


It's something every parent fears, and most of us have done...losing a child.  For most of us, we have found our child quickly and have only our memories of those horrible moments.  Lets keep it that way, shall we?

We recently went to Disney, and I interviewed a member of Disney security.  My basic question was: what can I do if I lose my child at Disney?  His answer was reassuring!

Prepare before you go.

Plan on brightly colored and/or matching outfits that stand out in a crowd.  It can get crazy in the parks, and it is helpful to spot your party quickly.

Take a picture.

Take a picture of your child upon entering the park.  It will help identify the clothing they are wearing, and what they look like THAT DAY.

Phone Number ID.

If your child has the ability to talk, and remember your cell phone number, this is the perfect time to start working on it.  If not, there are aids that you can make, and buy to help.  A simple idea project is to make a beaded bracelet with your phone number on it.  If you aren't crafty, you can order one on Amazon.

Talk to your kiddos about what to do if they can't find you.

I always tell my kids to look for another mom with kids, but at Disney there is an even better option.  Find a cast member.  Anyone wearing a costume knows what to do if they encounter a child without their adult.  Upon arrival, show your children what a cast member wearing a badge looks like.  

An Eye in the sky.

Its true.  Disney has cameras EVERYWHERE.  The guard that I interviewed said they have hundreds of cameras in locations all over the park.  He said they often have an eye on children who wander before anyone else notices.  (That made me breathe easier!)

Forget your bracelet, or have a non-verbal child?  Don't worry.

They have special stickers, and I used them on R3.  All you have to do is walk into City Hall or the Chamber or Commerce (depending on the park), and ask for one. Those stickers let the cast members know that that kiddo needs a little extra attention.  

If your child does become lost, here is the information for Disneyland and Disney World.  I sincerely hope you never need to use these resources, but having a plan can relieve the stress and let you enjoy Disney!

Have you ever lost a child at Disney?  What is your best advice about what to do?


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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with Stained with Style's ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. Stained with Style is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.  Stained with Style is also a participant in the Ting and Instant Pot affiliates programs.

Jul 22, 2016

My Closet Overhaul, Planning my New Wardrobe


If you have been following, you know that I am on a budget friendly mission to improve my mommy wardrobe.  Nothing fit well, or I had worn it 10 zillion times.  I came up with a way to make money selling my old things to buy new!

This was extremely frustrating.  I love the idea of a capsule(ish)wardrobe.  One where I have staple pieces, timeless ones that I want to wear year after year.  In addition to that core wardrobe, I want to throw in seasonal, trendy items.  Mama wants to look cute!

I decided to do some research.  After the Konmari purge, those freaking capsule people drove me crazy.  Everyone disagrees with everyone else.  How many pieces, what constitutes a capsule, blah, blah, blah.  Basically I was on my own.

My super smart hubby used the trello app, to make a list for me.  Its an app that allows you to make lists and share them.  I was able to add the things that I need, that I want, and what I love.

One of the first things I decided that I needed?   A pair of patent leather, nude-colored heels.  They will go with everything and add a certain amount of sophistication to any outfit.  Sold.  Clearly, being perpetually stained, I need some sophistication!

 I added those Louboutin heels, but I also realize that they aren't practical or budget friendly.  Frankly, they aren't super comfy either.  I will probably still buy very nice ones, but I find Kate Spade and Stuart Weitzman to be not only more budget friendly, but more comfortable on my foot.  Still a very high quality shoe that will last!






Here is a super secret way to add some more expensive items to your wardrobe.  1.  Be a sale shopper.  There are a ton of sale alert apps where you can add your item and be alerted when it goes on sale.  The higher end retailers like Neiman Marcus and Nordstrom often have GREAT sales at the end of the season, and those fancy shoes and purses will be on there. Just be patient.  2. Another way is to shop consignment.  Sites like Poshmark have lots of gently used or never worn items for a great price.  You just need to be a bit more careful about authenticity.

Thats all I have added right now.  I am crushing on a new pair of Birkenstocks, and am waiting very patiently (not patiently at all) for them to go on sale!


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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with Stained with Style's ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. Stained with Style is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.  Stained with Style is also a participant in the Ting and Instant Pot affiliates programs.

Jul 12, 2016

Stylish and Inexpensive Bathing Suits for Moms on the Go



I know, that you know, that I know, that swimsuit shopping with little kids is impossible.  It's just never going to happen.  You may also know that my favorite store is Amazon.  I love anything that saves me from dragging all three kids into a store.  I am especially loving Prime Day!

We have been spending every day at the pool and my bathing suits are looking a bit rough.  I decided to check out Amazon and HOLY COW!  They have some super cute and cheap options.  Here are some of my favorites.  Every one of these is less than $25.  Yahoo!

1. This one also comes in black...for obvious reasons.  HA!




2.  This one has been all over Pinterest.  Its so stinking cute, I may need it.  Done.  On the way, and read the reviews, I ordered a size up.



3.  Also making the rounds on Pinterest is this one, but I think it may not be that flattering on. I would love to see real pictures and not some pre-teen wearing it.


4.  This one reminds me of a much more expensive Trina Turk, and it is SO cute!



5.  LOVE the lace detail on this one.  Also comes in Navy and Black.




6.  I like the illusion of the bikini, with coverage.



7.  If you are excited by the high waisted retro look, here's one for you.  They have similar ones in a variety of colors.

  


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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with Stained with Style's ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. Stained with Style is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.  Stained with Style is also a participant in the Ting and Instant Pot affiliates programs.

Jul 6, 2016

The Secret Life of Pets, a Hilarious Concept that Falls Short


I was lucky enough to have been invited to see The Secret Life of Pets last night, and it was so fun! What a cool experience to see the movie at a special screening before everyone else gets to see it. The Honeybadger and I put on fancy dresses and hit the road.

We have been looking forward to this one for awhile.  I remember seeing the first preview, months ago, and recognizing some serious comedy heavy hitters.  Louis C.K., Kevin Hart, Ellie Kemper (one of our faves from Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt), Albert Brooks, Dana Carvey, Jaime Camil (Rogelio from Jane the Virgin) are just a few of my personal favorites.

I wanted to love it, I really did, but it fell short for me.  The cast was fantastic and there were some really great moments.  I loved Gidget, by Jenny Slate, and was moved by parts of the story, but found myself wondering when it would end.

My six year old found the story to be a too intense for her taste, she said several times that she was scared.  Coming from a kid who rolled through Star Wars like a boss and shed no tears for Bambi's mom, that's saying something.  A point in favor of The Secret Life of Pets was that she was worried enough about the characters to be fearful for their safety. A point against is that they did not have more fun with it once they got her to care.

I was glad that the poop jokes were over the Honeybadger's head, but the older elementary aged kids will get a kick out of that part.  When I asked her afterward, she thought it was pretty funny.

During a year with the Jungle Book, Finding Dory and Zootopia, this one isn't worth the money.  Wait until it's on Netflix, and you are forced to watch it 10 zillion times at home.


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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with Stained with Style's ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. Stained with Style is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.  Stained with Style is also a participant in the Ting and Instant Pot affiliates programs.

Jun 30, 2016

What to Pack Dad for the Hospital



When it comes time to pack for the hospital, everyone always talks about what Mom needs.  Obviously.  She is the one doing the, ahem, heavy lifting.  But, what about Dad?

For this post I asked the expert, my hubs, a dad of three!  Not surprisingly, he had lots of great suggestions:





I always got a little gift for my Hubby.  I know that it's the thing to get a push present for the Mommy, but I thought it was important that the Hubs got a little something too.

When I was having Belle, I ordered a custom T from Etsy.  It said Dad3 (the hubs is a supernerd, so he loved it).  

I hope you find this helpful!


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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with Stained with Style's ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. Stained with Style is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.  Stained with Style is also a participant in the Ting and Instant Pot affiliates programs.

Jun 28, 2016

My Closet Overhaul, Step One: Purging and Selling


After giving birth, nursing three babies, and gaining and losing more pounds than I care to mention, my closet needed help.

I started in the usual way, by feeling totally overwhelmed and giving up.

The next step, taking my time.  I went through one drawer at a time.  I kept the things that I love, kept the maybe items, and made a pile for things to donate or sell.

 I tried to sell things on Facebook groups, but quickly decided that I did NOT want to meet people or have people in my house.  My next step was Poshmark.

Setting up my account was easy and when someone has purchased something, it has been pretty easy to send the item.  I did invest in polymailers from Amazon to make it super simple.  Just FYI you will want to double bag items or put it in a ziploc first.  I had something eaten by the post office machine.  Boo.  I was lucky that most of the things that I had in my closet were actually sell-able.  Even if you buy them on sale, a quality item will retain some value (and also look better over time).

It has been slow going, and I have been trying to add a new item every couple of days.  It honestly has its challenges too.  Taking great pictures (in good lighting) when the kids are napping, or screaming at me, means that this process is taking longer than expected.

The next step is a second purge.  A harder look at the things that I kept is in order.  After that, I am going to make a list of all of the things that I feel are lacking in my wardrobe.  The proceeds from selling my stuff (read those crazy Pucci heels I bought before kids that I have worn once) will go toward buying my new duds.  I will keep you posted on my progress.


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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with Stained with Style's ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. Stained with Style is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.  Stained with Style is also a participant in the Ting and Instant Pot affiliates programs.

Jun 22, 2016

Kinsa Smart Thermometer Review


I cannot tell you how many thermometers I have purchased.  It boggles the mind, and I feel like next to the sock monster in the dryer, there must be some little sprite who likes to break and hide thermometers.  What is that about?  One day recently I was reading online and POOF!  This magical thermometer appeared.  Its called the Kinsa.

I felt like I needed to find out how well it works (you know, for research and all). And YOU GUYS ITS AMAZING.


1. It is fast

Results in 10 seconds


2. There is a waiting bubble game

Sounds odd?  But it is kiddo goodness.  While they are waiting for the ten seconds to end, there is a bubble popping game that appears on the screen.  I played it, you know, for technical reasons.


3. Every family member has a profile

After you input your family data, each member has a color and their name.


4. The profile keeps track of temperatures

Yup.  You heard that right.  It remembers each person's temperature reading.  No more trying to remember what kid number ones temp was at 3 am.  Never mind when you have more than one with a fever that you are trying to keep track of!  I can't tell you how many times I have tried to record data on my phone in the middle of the night.  #gamechanger


5. There's an app for that

Apple and Android.  Super easy.


6. Installation is easy. Christy proof even.

They have step by step instructions, with videos on how to install it.  For those, like me, who have trouble getting things to work, it is pure genius.


7. Track symptoms and medications

I don't even have to think about it.  Obviously the littler one will not be able to articulate what she is feeling, but the obvious symptoms I can keep track of!


8.  Using your location, it can tell you what things are going around the school.  

As much as I don't look forward to cold and flu season returning, it is awesome to have a tool that will actually help me during the dreaded sick days!  The best part, is it isn't very expensive.  I found it on Amazon!







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STANDARD FTC DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note that I only endorse products that are in alignment with Stained with Style's ideals and that I believe would be of value to my readers. Stained with Style is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.  Stained with Style is also a participant in the Ting and Instant Pot affiliates programs