March 2017

It’s always fun to get to see and hang out with my fellow NY mom bloggers but even more fun when I get to host it with fab title sponsors, Meisterdish and JennAir!  On March 20th, we gathered at the beautiful JennAir showroom on 59th street and collaboratively cooked up a storm using Meisterdish’s easy to follow recipes and instructions.

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Meisterdish washes, cuts and delivers the freshest ingredients to your door and promises a gourmet meal in as little as 8 minutes! (currently serving Midtown East and UES with plans to expand soon).  I love this!  No more crying over chopped onions!  AND I get to look like a gourmet chef in minutes?!  DSC_8338It’s perfect for busy moms on-the-go who are tired of meal planning, and feeling the need to mix their menus up!  They have a terrific selection of options to fit every taste and dietary restriction.  And their Executive Chef hails from NY’s famed, Daniel restaurant!  Pretty impressive!  We all got to taste test a variety of their foods at the event AND take home a box to cook later!

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Possibly the best and most surprising thing about this service is that it isn’t subscription based like the others.  No obligation and no pressure to conform to a set # of dinners to cook fits well into my unpredictable and event-filled lifestyle! DSC_8302

Thanks to all the influential NY mommy bloggers who joined us for this little lunch!  DSC_8333

And thanks to JennAir for letting us enjoy their beautiful kitchen appliances and showroom space! Did you know their luxury appliances now have a Nest and (Amazon) Alexa hookup?  Your smartphone can now connect to your fridge and you can preheat your oven by talking through Alexa!  Who else feels like we are living in the future here??  Click here to learn more!

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Card a Mom was on-site welcoming guests and introducing  everyone to their clever app which helps moms get in touch with and meet other moms sort of Match.com style.

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I wrote about my awkward experiences initially trying to make mom friends on my own here and really wish this handy app was around back then!  If you’re a mom, you NEED THIS!

mom friends Hope McGrath, a transformational life coach and stylist was also on hand addressing moms’ most pressing questions concerning everything from business, to balance, to wardrobe.  Everyone loved her grounded advice and insightfulness.  As her friend of 10(?) years, I can personally attest to her genuineness, great listening skills, and stellar style.  Check out the many ways she can help you achieve your goals on her site here.

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After enjoying delectable dishes, trying our hand in the JennAir kitchen and nibbling on fresh baked cookies, each guest took home a goody bag filled with a Meisterdish box, wine pairing wheel and luxe notebook from JennAir, free class passes from Chaise Fitness, (my current, go-to workout), Buntoppers hair accessories, a Live Clean Baby bubble bath / wash (smells amazing!!) and $150 off NY Kids Club!

nyc blogger event, goody bag

To see the buntoppers on my minifashionista follow us on IG!  Below is a close-up of their adorable product unpackaged.

buntoppers

And YOU readers (since you made it all the way to the bottom of this post) also get a code to NY Kids Club!

USE promo code ‘FABKIDS17‘ to save $50 on any class of your choice!  They offer every kids’ class including: sports, fitness, gymnastics, math, science, chess, engineering, art, dance, theater and music.  My 4 year old is taking classes there this summer and we are really looking forward to it.  They’re also a great venue for parties!  I’m throwing a Fab Kids series all year!  (more on that later, follow FB for details).

Please leave a comment if you were at this event or tell me what you thought of all these party details!  What goody bag item would you most covet?

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is a sponsored post but all opinions as always, are 100% my own.

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Ever since becoming a new NYC parent, I’ve enjoyed checking out the biggest baby show in NYC, the New York Baby Show hosted by New York Family.

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Here are 3 reasons why you should go:

  1. It’s a one-stop shop where you can taste-test, try-out, and even test-drive all the best and latest baby, family, and parenting products!  You’ll get to browse, ask questions and compare without the high-pressure sales tactics. Discover the latest trends, learn about new technologies, and learn from other parents who have tried the products out!
  2. You can tell your husband that you’re headed to an EVENT, (not just shopping)!  This is one shopping experience that my hubby can’t say no to.  He actually enjoys tagging along, and hunting down the latest finds for our family.  The interactive nature of the event escalates the shopping experience into a fun-filled time for the whole family.  Think raffles, mommy meetups, celebrity speakers, face-painting, and other free activities for the kids!
  3. You know the fun of shopping your local grocery store when they have samples?  It’s kind of the same thing here.  Every aisle that you turn into offers snacks for you and your kids, beverages to quench your thirst, stickers and promotional toys to keep your kids occupied.  And c’mon!  Who doesn’t like free stuff!

Enter to win free tickets for you and your family!

The 1st 10 win to click through here WIN!  Don’t fret if you click through and those are gone.  You can click to purchase single or family pack tickets for half off here.  Hope to see you there!

NYBS2017-Ticket Giveaway-Blog-700x500[2]

For tips on getting there click this link.

For exhibitor, seminar and programming info click here.

This is a sponsored post. #mtbloggerlounge

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I naively thought that I could dreamily plan out my daughter’s birthday parties for at least the first 5 years of her life. Anyone who knows me knows I love planning parties and knows that I find any random excuse to celebrate.  Kids’ White party to celebrate the end of summer, anyone??  So here I am with carefully thought-through party ideas for her 1st through 5th birthday parties..not kidding check out my Pinterest page…and then my precocious, soon-to-be 4 year old daughter throws a wrench in my plans and independently comes up with her own ideas.  Princess Party!girls birthday party, pink party, pink party decor, happy birthday bannerAnd boy was she specific!

  • “princess theme with pink”
  • “I want it to be a tea party”
  • “I want to sit in a queen’s chair!”
  • “I want a princess cake like Olivia’s (referencing a Barbie cake)”
  • “lots of CANDY!”
  • only 4 guests” (tells me exactly who to invite and that this year it has to be a small party)
  • “I want to set the table!”

OK OK!  I get it. You want to be a princess!  So back to the drawing board I went and through our collaborative research/discussion and approval phase, we came up with a non-Disney-specific, princess tea party with pink, white and metallic colors running throughout.  Here’s how I transformed our NY apartment into a picture-perfect party palace and here are tips on how you can design yours on a budget too:

Backdrop 

We have a large white, blank wall currently devoid of art, or frames which not only gives our living room, a clean minimalistic feel but also allows me to easily transform the space each holiday or for any celebration.  I turned this wall into a beautiful photo backdrop with my 1 splurge piece, this beautifully printed banner from Iconica Design.  The large scale immediately brightened up the room and carried the colors throughout the space.  What do you think?

pink and white party, happy birthday, photo backdrop wall pink white, princess party

Since I’m all about the photo opp, I imagined getting a group shot with the girls all jumping on my couch with balloons in the air, waving them around like they just didn’t care…  and I loved when my vision came to life!

Balloons

Balloon garlands and installations if professionally done are super pricey.  But you can go the DIY route if you have a lot of patience and can spare some time (and by “some” I mean double the time you think it takes).  To stay within budget, I blew all these balloons up myself (bought wholesale), taped them to my mirror with packing tape, prayed they would stay on but still had to repeat this process 10x cuz so many popped or wouldn’t stay up, then added mirrored Christmas garland, and finally inserted silk flowers in between for a unique, girly look.  It was well worth the effort in the end, I think, don’t you?

princess party, diy balloons, balloon garland danny tableballoon It perfectly echoed the banner across the way and was a major conversation piece that night!balloons

I also did a balloon makeover on an enormous balloon that I brought home one day from the Live Clean blogger brunch.  By adding my own coordinating pom pom string, tulle and paper garland, it became a one-of-a-kind photo prop!

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Her feather crown can be purchased wholesale here.

Desserts

She mentioned she wanted sweets.  So I made and formed rice krispy stars, added frosting, gold glitter and a gold straw to create magic wands!

DSC_7592Pink rock candy sticks, jellybeans, and mini cupcakes also contributed to the sugar high.  And pink, gold and silver Hershey kisses hid in crown favor boxes while candy awaited our guests in the form of pretty pink purses.

princess party, dessert bar, pink candy bar

Happy Birthday sign is actually a cake topper that I bought wholesale here.

Crown favor boxes can be bought wholesale here

Pink purse favor boxes found wholesale here

The most royal of desserts however, was the princess cake!  Straight out of our dreams, was this glorious Barbie cake, dress, hat and present designed to match our party decor, from Baked by Tal.  AMAZING!

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Besides giving the sweets the royal treatment, I picked out the prettiest princess-y paper goods that I could find while perfectly matching her color theme.  By printing, cutting and assembling on my own, I was able to cut costs as well.  The banner, cupcake toppers, invite, thank you card and other event signs and notes can be found here.

how to plan a princess party, barbie princess cake, baked by tal

Tea party menu included: crown shaped PB&J princess sandwiches, 2 kinds of salad, pasta, chicken and rice, asparagus, fruit and of course, tea which I added pink edible rosebuds to.  Here’s a shot of the sandwiches that I cut using crown-shaped cookie cutters.

princess food, what to serve at kids party, kids party food, pb&j

Gold glitter wall

If you want a picture -perfect party, you MUST think about pretty backdrops!  These princesses were expert posers and I knew I had to have a special spot for them to pick a prop and pose.  Here, I re-used my fold-up backdrop holder and created a shimmery backdrop with a friend’s borrowed gold linen, some pom pom, xmas trim and some leftover plastic tablecloth previously used at a past party.  Everything was simply taped on with packing tape on the back and cost me nothing ‘cuz I just used what I had.  It’s amazing what you can find for your party at the local dollar store!  The shredded pink tablecloth turned garland here was a dollar each and I hand-cut it.  The gold circle confetti was also from the dollar store and I filled my wholesale balloons at the dollar store with helium!

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Tablescape

For a sophisticated kids’ tablescape I mixed in paper plates with real plates, bought coordinating teacups on sale on ebay, and found the perfect pink, white and gold paper goods at wholesale prices! 

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I really wanted a luxe linen but couldn’t afford the rental prices from my favorite linen supplier, Wildflower Linen so I made my own by buying wholesale, 1 yard of glittery mesh fabric from NY’s garment district and adding my own white ruffle trim.  I then sprinkled some diamond confetti pieces (found at Target) all over the table as shown here – majorly upgraded look from the usual child’s plastic table cover, right? how to set a kids party table, tablescape, design kids party, kids party stylistOf course, Juliet got to have her throne.  I found that Exceptional Party Rentals had some of the best throne selections with delivery to/from NYC.

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Activities

For this princess tea party, our (hired) princess (and Juliet’s babysitter) gave individualized mini-makeovers giving each guest a turn on the throne.  The girls also got to design their own glass slipper, a craft involving stickers and these wholesale favor shoes.

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And they enjoyed the shimmer and shine styling station and a “game of thrones” that I made up and had our resident princess lead.  (think musical chairs but with princess music, thrones, and princesses wearing tiaras)

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princess party for toddlers, pink and silver party, pink and gold party DSC_7732

In the end, everyone had such a blast that they overstayed by 2 more hours!  Nobody wanted the party to end, including me.  See my Instagram and Twitter for more details and videos!

Juliet is already talking about her next birthday party plans… she says it will be a Frozen themed party with 5 friends when she turns 5!

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brooklyn art, herve tullet author, press play, this isn't trash, invisible dog art

When children’s book author, Herve Tullet’s team invited us to Brooklyn to see his latest art exhibit, we trekked over the Brooklyn Bridge!  These two minifashionistas had to see “This Isn’t Trash,” (the title to this imaginative artist’s graphic installation) and us mommy bloggers obliged!

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featured here are GothamLove and DowntownChicMoms

The Invisible Dog Art Center where this was held was packed that night with art-lovers looking to get up close and personal with the both the author and his work.  Up-close viewings revealed torn paper, shreds, tape and pieces on the floor left to look a little like trash.

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above photo: Courtesy The Invisible Dog- Simon Courchel

There was even a cardboard box sitting in the middle of the room, there for people to discover, with the label this isn’t trash filled with scrap, torn pieces of his art.  Of course, this was a big hit with the kids!

invisible dog art center, modern art, art for kids, arts n crafts DSC_8004

For more on this exhibit, check out my article on Mommy Nearest!DSC_7990  herve tullet, herve tullet book, herve tullet art

And check out these two playing ring around the rosie right outside the exhibit! (Thanks GothamLove for the video!)

 

 

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i

I’ve always dreamed about leading arts ‘n crafts with my child one day and am so thrilled that my little one is into it.  I try to ensure that she has some sort of artsy exposure everyday whether that means an outing to one of New York’s many art galleries, installations and exhibits, or making sure she has hands-on art experience through class/school or at home.  So when Mom Trends and Halos invited us as one of the bloggers to join them at the Children’s Museum of Arts, we jumped at the chance to share some quality mommy and me time this Saturday!

crafting with food, halos oranges, arts and craft ideas, crafting with oranges They had the most ingenious crafts all incorporating their seedless mandarin oranges!

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Together, we made a bird, a bunny and even a potted flower!

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fWho would have thought to craft with food but orange you glad you now know??  (sorry I had to insert that corny children’s joke)!

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Seriously though, how cute are these creations, all made with some construction paper, glue dots, googly eyes, straw, cupcake liners, and pipe cleaner – basics that any crafter at home most likely already owns! Juliet loved it!

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We already love Halos oranges because they’re sweet, seedless and easy for toddler hands to eat and peel.  They’re such a healthy non-GMO alternative to the many unnatural, processed snacks out there.  Plus they make for great on-the-go, packable treats!  I also learned through the event, that “Pure Goodness” is Halo’s motto.  Halo spreads goodness through their charitable work. They contribute more than $2 million annually to kids’ education, they partner with Feeding America to provide healthy fruit, and they support solar power usage and water conservation.  They’re good to families, communities and the land!  Kudos to them!  That’s a halo well-deserved

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And the food.  Can we talk about the Halo orange – infused FOOD?!  I’m getting hungry as I type and look at these pictures remembering all this deliciousness.  Fruity pizza cookie made with pomegrante seeds, oranges and pistachios atop a frosted sugar cookie?  YES PLEASE!  Orange infused cider, chocolate covered orange slices, mandarin salsa, spring salads and smoothies?

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Uh can I go back right now for MORE?!  IMG_1220

Luckily, they sent us all home with a bag of oranges, a craft kit and all the recipe cards to replicate this tasty experience at home.  I’m definitely trying this prosciutto bruschetta bite below!

appetizers

Is anyone else’s mouth watering now??

Thank you to the team at MomTrends and Halo for inviting us to such a fun mommy and me experience!  We enjoyed the day at the museum (see my IG feed and stories), learned so many great things about Halo and had a memorable day crafting away!

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This is a sponsored post but all opinions as always, are 100% my own.

 

 

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