Just Dance Kids 2014

I’m pretty choosy when it comes to my children and video games. I don’t want them to sit in front of a television all winter and just play games.

This month we had a chance to try the new Just Dance Kids® 2014.  I’m going to be honest with you- my family did not get a “dancing gene.” Most people have more dancing ability in their little finger than we have in our whole family combined.

That being said my kids love to dance, but I was worried they wouldn’t enjoy the game because we just can’t dance.

Once we got the game set up, and spent forty-five minutes trying to find batteries for the Wii controller, I was excited to that the 30 fun dance routines are ranked by difficulty level.

We started on the easy level with the four year- old and eleven year old.

just dance1 768x1024 Just Dance Kids 2014

They found one of their favorite songs (there is a nice mix between popular songs and fun kids’ songs) and started dancing. The dance moves were easy to follow and even my four year old was able to complete most of the moves.

I was very happy to see that the dance moves were G rated and I didn’t have to worry about my kids learning a move I would be embarrassed for them try at a wedding reception!

My kids loved this game, and I was glad you could set it to four players. The interface was easy enough for my little kids to navigate and even my big kids tried it out.

This is a great game for those cold winter months when it is too miserable to go outside! My kids often get a little stir crazy heading in to February, so I’m excited to have one more option for them to play when they get bored that actually gets them moving!

justdancekids Just Dance Kids 2014

Here are some of the highlights.

  • 30+ all-new dances led by real kids!
  • Available on Wii™, Wii U™, and Kinect for Xbox360
  • Classic 4-player cooperative on Wii
  • Up to 5 players on Wii U – use the gamepad to make your entire family dance to silly dance moves during any song for bonus points!
  • Cooperative 2-player on Kinect – make your own music video.
  • Playlists allow Mom to select all her kids’ favorite songs for nonstop dancing.
  • On screen lyrics lets kids learn the words and sing along as they dance.
  • Simple menu icons allow kids to navigate on their own.
  • Kid friendly songs make this a great game for kids to do when mom needs some quiet time!

Just Dance Kids® 2014 would make an excellent gift this holiday season.

You can find it at all major retailers including Target, Walmart, Amazon, and Game Stop.

This post may contain a link to an affiliate. See my disclosure policy for more information.

Play Like a Girl

I grew up playing sports and I always wanted my girls to play sports. While I would never force them to play something they didn’t enjoy, I wanted to give them the opportunity to be on a team, get exercise, and learn about winning and losing.

For our family the sport has always been soccer. It isn’t super expensive to play and since all the kids play I’m not running around town taking kids to practices or games, they all play in the same location.

My little girls have played soccer for several seasons. At first they were a little intimidated, but as they played they gained confidence and even scored a few goals! They played on coed teams, which for them wasn’t anything new since they’ve grown up playing soccer with their older brothers.

IMG 0043 1024x682 Play Like a Girl

I’ve always encouraged my girls that when they are on a team they not only do their best, but they do their best to help their teammates shine as well. I’m so proud of them because they were just as excited when their teammates made a great play as they were when they made one. They were cheering from the bench and on the field.

They worked hard at practice and were eager to go to their games. They were concerned when teammates were hurt and showed compassion for opposing teammates as well. We always taught them to play hard, but fair and that’s what they do.

IMG 0061 1024x682 Play Like a Girl

Sports had a huge impact on my life and I can see the impact it is having on my girls’ lives as well. They have learned so much playing soccer about friendships and teamwork as well as hard work and discipline. Playing soccer also gives them the opportunity to interact with other adults in authority (coaches and refs) since they don’t get much of that being homeschooled.

It also taught them a ton about winning and losing. Both girls have been on teams that won a lot, but lost a lot too. In fact my nine year old had a season where they lost every single game. It was hard for her to play her hardest and still not win a game, but it was a great life lesson and she learned how to lose graciously. While she was very sad about that losing season she came back the next season determined to practice and play harder.

Verizon wants you to share your daughter’s athletic achievements and they’re giving away a deluxe tech and entertainment package. One person will win:

  • One (1) Grand Prize consisting of the following will be awarded to the Winner:
  • Samsung Galaxy NX 20.3MP Camera with 18-55 Lens (ARV $1,699)
  • Microsoft Surface Pro 2 – 128 GB (ARV $1,000)
  • Type Cover 2 for Surface Pro 2 (ARV $130)
  • HEX Surface Sleeve (ARV $40)
  • Surface Mini Display Port HD AV Adapter (AVR $40)
  • Monster iSport Victory In-Ear Headphones (AVR $150)
  • Apple iPod Nano (ARV $150)
  • Amazon Gift Card for Sports Equipment purchase (ARV $1,800)

You can find more details on their contest page.


This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Verizon. The opinions and text are all mine.

This post may contain a link to an affiliate. See my disclosure policy for more information.

Bringing Out the #SoftSide of Life

All of my kids have had their own “blankies” since they were born. One of my kids changed the name from “blankie” to “kiki” when they were little and we’ve called it kiki ever since.

Some children have been more attached to their kiki’s than others, and during our move to Maryland last year we managed to lose TWO of them. I’ve never been one of those smart moms that has a backup blankie hidden in my closet so we hoped for the best and then eventually ended up buying replacement kikis.

kikicollage 1024x1024 Bringing Out the #SoftSide of Life

Cora’s first kiki (bottom left photo) was actually my favorite. I purchased it right before my last doctor’s appointment. It was during that appointment that my blood pressure was so high I was sent immediately to the hospital to be induced. For those of you who have read my blog for a while, you know things got worse from there and we ended up with a NICU stay for her and extended hospital stay for me.

For some reason knowing her kiki was sitting in a Target bag in my car made me feel a little better. I knew she had to get better and come home so she could be the next Happy child to carry on the kiki tradition.

Four and a half years later kiki is still making Cora feel better. Even though we are on our second one (I’m still trying to find the original one – so if we left it at your house please send it back!!!) Cora loves her kiki.

I realized early on that because of our military lifestyle, my kids wouldn’t always have a consistent home to return to, so I focused on finding traditions and small items that would help make wherever we were feel like home.

My kids knew that no matter where they were sleeping, they had their kiki’s. Well one child had a Buzz Lightyear costume – but he’s our strange one. icon smile Bringing Out the #SoftSide of Life Kiki’s make scrapes hurt less, surgeries easier to recover from, and even make sleeping in the car tolerable. It’s a little thing, but it works.

“What would you like to see Downy turn soft? Leave a comment on your favorite Downy #softside Facebook post(s) and in the comments section below for a chance to have Downy re-create one of your #softside moments!

I’m giving away a $100 gift card to one reader when you share what brings out the softside in your life. Leave a comment on this post to win. Giveaway ends 10/29/2013.

Downy has asked me to participate in this program. I am being compensated for my participation in the program but all opinions expressed in the post are my own and not those of Downy or the Procter & Gamble Company.

This post may contain a link to an affiliate. See my disclosure policy for more information.

Messy Baby = Happy Baby #hfbrightside

Cora was what the doctor’s liked to call a lazy feeder. Because she was a preemie she burned more calories trying to eat than she could consume and would often fall asleep halfway through a feeding.

Since she was so little, making sure she drank so many ounces a day was vital to her development. Feedings at our house became a production. Me, a seasoned mom of seven, became obsessed with feeding time.

We would try every trick in the book to keep Cora awake through her feeding. From turning on all the lights in the room at 3am, to taking off all her clothes, I felt like feeding time was a major production. And the best part, we did this every hour and forty-five minutes, twenty four hours a day.

Of course it was all worth it to see our little preemie gain weight every week, but I couldn’t wait until she was big enough to sit in a high chair and eat!

Wouldn’t you know that Cora expended so much energy as a baby that she would often fall asleep in her high chair too!

Feedings would start out great as she gobbled the food off the spoon. But after a few minutes she would settle back into the high chair and with each bite slowly drift off into dreamland. It became a race to see how much food we could shovel in her mouth before she totally fell asleep and dinner would be over.

No matter how loud our dinners were or how many people were over, Cora could fall asleep in her high chair.

I’m convinced that Cora got most of her early nutrition from Puffs, because she could eat them on the go. In fact she loved those little snacks so much I took them everywhere with us because I knew an offering of Puffs could convince her to sit still a little longer, stay happy in the car seat for a few more miles, or make it through a family movie night.

Those Puffs were so popular I would have to hide them from my other young children, so I wouldn’t run out. I would often buy five and six containers at the store prompting “the look” from the cashier. I wanted to say I had twins or even triplets, but really I just had a child who loved to eat on the go!

Even to this day if Cora sees a baby with Puffs she wants them.

Now our baby feeding days our over. I’m sad that those awesome Happy Baby baby food pouches weren’t invented when my kids were young. I remember traveling with glass baby food jars and having one shatter in the bottom of the diaper bag!

If I hadn’t been traveling overseas I might have just thrown the diaper bag away! It was nearly impossible to clean up pears mixed with shards of glass in the bottom of the bag! But those days are behind me and now I have a sweet little niece that I get to feed every once in awhile.

happy baby Messy Baby = Happy Baby #hfbrightside

She’s still in the more food on the face than in the mouth phase of eating but she sure looks cute doing it!

To learn more about their complete line of products for your little one, visit their website or find them on Facebook and Twitter.

Disclosure: I participated in this post on behalf of Burst Media. I was compensated for my time and commitment, but all opinions are my own.

This post may contain a link to an affiliate. See my disclosure policy for more information.