netflix-logoNetflix Canada is a great resource for fun entertainment for the kids – endless movie and television show options that kids of all ages can enjoy.

Although there are tons of choices that will make the kiddies laugh and have fun, I think it’s really important to expose them to movies and shows that they may not choose for themselves. For example, there are so many science titles on Netflix that are a great way to entertain and educate at the same time.

Most of the time when I make a suggestion for movie night that isn’t the typical animated family flick, I usually get the groans from both of the lovely people to whom I gave life. And then they watch and almost always, enjoy my suggestion, because I am always right. Ahem.

Want to get your kids science-inspired this month?? Here are some great titles to check out for your older kids (mine are 8 and 11 and enjoyed these as well).

pbs-hunting-with-elementsdeadliest-volcanoes let-your-mind-wondercosmos

PBS offers great science titles that are informative and interesting but also understandable. Hunting the Elements and Deadliest Volcanoes are only two of many highly rated ones to check out.

Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey is 13 episodes about the nature of time and space, based on the original series. It is incredible and beautiful and an absolute must-see.

TedTalks: Let Your Mind Wonder are a fun series of 16 short videos that answer some important questions like Should we eat bugs? and Why is yawning contagious? These are answers we all need, no??

These are just four titles to check out but you can find so many great science themed titles including those from PBS and TedTalks. Have fun getting  your science on!!

Disclaimer: I’m part of the Netflix #StreamTeam, and I receive special perks as part of my affiliation with Netflix. All views and opinions are my own. 

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Mar
16

Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb – GIVEAWAY!

by MARIA on March 16, 2015

night-at-the-museum-secret-of-the-tomb-dvdI’m a big fan of the Night at the Museum movies – loved the first one, adored the second. Both of the kids also really love them and we’ve watched them a ridiculous amount of times. I can’t help it – I love museums, and the thought of art and statues coming to life at night is just too fun not to enjoy.

Then I heard there would be a third and I thought, really? I wasn’t going to watch it at all but we watched it the other night with the kids, and with very low expectations, we really loved it. It was hilarious and fun and a perfect way to end the series.

This time around Larry Daley (Ben Stiller) heads to London to “save the magic that brings the museum exhibits to life.”  Many of the beloved characters of the past two movies are back including Jedediah Smith, Octavius, Ahkmenrah, and Theodore Roosevelt. We also get introduced to some new characters, including my family’s personal favourites played by Rebel Wilson and Ben Stiller. It’s a really fun film and perfect for family movie night!!

The DVD combo pack has some great features including deleted and extended scenes, a gag reel and some great behind-the-scenes featurettes.

I’m giving away a Blu-ray/DVD combo pack of Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb! The giveaway will run until March 24, 2015 and is open to Canadian Residents only. Good Luck!!

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Feb
11

Make Your Own Movie Moment With K-Y #giveaway

by MARIA on February 11, 2015

my-boyfriend-colin-firthThere’s that moment in the movie Love Actually where Colin Firth (my Boyfriend and Special Valentine) goes to Portugal to find the girl he fell in love with. He walks into the restaurant where she’s a waitress, with her family and entire village following him. He then proceeds to speak to her in Portuguese, which he learned specifically so he could speak to her and ask her to marry him.

And then I died. Sigh.

It is one of my favourite movie moments because it’s sooooo romantic and sweet and if I close my eyes really tight, I successfully imagine myself as the lovely Portuguese girl who wins Colin Firth and his hotness in the end. A girl can dream/hallucinate.

With Valentine’s Day just a few days away, it’s the perfect time (although really, ANY TIME is the perfect time) to make your own romantic moments. Of course, during those sexy times, there are certain things that make the sexy times even sexier – candles, music, designer handbags, another person and some Yours + Mine.

ky-yours-mineInsert lubricant segue here.

K-Y Yours + Mine is a couples lubricant that offers a delightful experience. They are applied individually but when mixed together, you experience heat and tingling and delightful times two. There’s no strong scent in either product, they’re not sticky or too thick, and they have long-lasting effects. They’re definitely a fun addition to a sexy time experience.

In honour of Valentine’s Day, I have a great prize pack for one lucky winner. The prize includes a $50 Cineplex gift card, a $50 Cara Foods (Montana’s, Kelsey’s etc) gift card, and your own K-Y Yours + Mine couple lubricant to enjoy your own special moment.

Enter below using Rafflecopter, letting me know one of your favourite romantic movie moments. The giveaway is open to Canadian residents only and ends Wednesday, February 18, 2015.

Good Luck and Happy Valentine’s Day.

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Jan
14

Hoover Air Cordless Vacuum – Review

by MARIA on January 14, 2015

hoover-logoBefore the holidays, I was sent a Hoover Air Cordless vacuum to test out around my house.

In my home I have hardwood, area rugs, tile and some laminate, so I am constantly trying to deal with crumbs and dust bunnies. I often sweep or Swiffer or drag out the full size heavy vacuum to clean, so I thought having a light, cordless upright would be a great option to try out. Enter the Hoover Air Cordless.

hoover-air-vacuum

When I opened the box, which was very ingeniously packaged by the way, there was the vacuum, the charger, TWO removable 25-minute runtime lithium ion batteries, an extra filter, 2-in-1 dusting/crevice tool, extended length crevice tool and a hard floor brush roll. Additional tools can be purchased separately as well. The first thing you’ll notice, is that it’s pretty and sleek which is nice. It has room to hold one of the additional tools on the side, so I attached the crevice tool as that would be the one to get the most use in my house.

hoover-air

I immediately charged the battery which took approximately three hours to charge. I definitely like the fact that it comes with two batteries, so while one is being used, the other can be charged. The packaging says that you should get approximately 50 minutes use out of both batteries, which I have found to be accurate. After charging it, I took it for a test run. Right away, I liked that I could maneuver it very easily with one hand, both around and under furniture. It’s under ten pounds so it’s lightweight which is such a nice change from what I’m used to. And without the cords getting in the way, it’s so easy to grab it for a quick clean up. Another great option is that you can use the vacuum with or without the brush roll rotating – this is important if you have really shiny, polished floors that you’d like to keep that way. Personally, I used it with the brushroll on the entire time and it picked up everything in its way. You also have the option of switching out the brushroll from carpet to hardwood, but I didn’t bother. I also love the front headlight – definitely a bonus.

hoover-airYou can also remove the handle and move the hose from the bottom to connect to the handle for the wand option – great for vacuuming corners, stairs etc. The hose of course isn’t as long as one you would find with a full-sized vacuum so you’ll have to carry the vacuum with you as you go up the stairs. I did find the hose suction didn’t seem very powerful, so much so that I thought I hadn’t connected it correctly. However, it still managed to pick up all the dust crumbs that it encountered so I was actually surprised by that.

I think this is definitely a good-looking, well designed lightweight cordless vacuum that is a great option to consider. The price tag is high at approximately $300 (depending on the site/promotions etc), so that’s definitely something to consider. However, The Hoover Air Cordless offers a powerful upright vacuum that is lightweight, hold a ton of debris and long battery life. This is going to be my go to vacuum from now on.

Disclaimer: I was sent a Hoover Air Cordless to review, however my thoughts are my own. 

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Nov
28

MATTEL HOLIDAY GIVEAWAY #MattelHoliday

by MARIA on November 28, 2014

You may have noticed more giveaways on my blog than usual and you’d be right.

I love giving away many things this time of year – it makes me happy to do it, hence many giveaways!

This one is the ultimate MATTEL HOLIDAY GIVEAWAY!!!!! (said loudly, with fireworks)

One lucky CANADIAN (sorry my American friends) will win FOUR great prizes (Approx. M.S.R.P. $280), just in time to give them to a little person in your life!

The prize includes (shown with my little people – who were eager to take pictures so they could rip everything open):

BARBIE® 2014 Holiday Doll

“She’s pretty. She’s nice. I like her dress.”

image (7)

BOOMco. Stealth Ambush™ Blaster

“It’s my favourite.”

image (6)

BARBIE® Glam Camper™

“It’s nice. It’s cool because it opens into many different things. I love it.”

image (8)

MONSTER HIGH® Freaky Fusion™ Catacombs

“Super cool.”

image

This is one fabulous prize!!! This giveaway is open to Canadian Residents only so please, go forth and enter below!

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Nov
28

Our Ultimate Holiday Movie & Roku Winners #StreamInto2015

by MARIA on November 28, 2014

It’s been just over two weeks since I posted my Stream into 2015 post with Staples Canada and the Roku giveaway.

It was definitely a hit!

We were challenged by Staples Canada to watch as many holiday movies that we could and decide on our Ultimate Holiday Movie.

We’ve watched tons including Arthur Christmas, Elf, Fred Claus, A Christmas Story, The Grinch Stole Christmas, Jack Frost…..the list is LONG.

But after a very scientific process, ahem, we decided on our ULTIMATE HOLIDAY MOVIE!!!!

Elf-movie-poster

 

We just love Elf. Elf is our favourite!

And if you haven’t seen it……actually I’m quite sure that’s not even a possibility, so I won’t even finish that sentence.

And now the real reason, why you’re reading this post — my two winners of the ROKU 3 prizes!!

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Thank you so much to everyone you entered!!!

HAPPY HOLIDAYS!!!

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Nov
21

Canadian Online Shopping with Shop.ca #ReInventTheMall

by MARIA on November 21, 2014

shop-ca-logo

I have a little problem.

Let me rephrase that – my spouse thinks I have a little problem.

A shopping problem.

Personally, I don’t think it’s a problem because it’s relaxing and enjoyable.

It’s even more enjoyable, for me anyway, during the holidays because it’s a unavoidable necessity. I HAVE to shop.

I come from a huge family and have many nieces and nephews, and siblings, and parents, and of course my two little hyenas and the husband and a friends to shop for, so it unfortunately gets pricey pretty quickly.

I try to do as much of my holiday shopping online as possible, because there are so many more options than I can find in the small city that I live in.

This is why I really like Shop.ca.

The best thing about it for me is that it’s Canadian (I. Am. Canadian), so I can avoid duties and taxes and crazy surcharges and shipping, that is always the case when shopping on U.S. sites. There’s nothing I hate more than finding a great gift online for a great price and then having to let it go because the shipping is outrageous. With Shop.ca, shipping is FREE!!! Plus, I’m all for supporting great Canadian business.

I’ve been looking for presents for my 10 year old son who loves hockey and just by searching NHL on the site, I found over 2,300 results including autographed photos which of course, are on his birthday and Christmas lists this year. Success!! The site is super easy to navigate, not cluttered which makes a big difference in my opinion, and full of great products. If money was no object (where my money tree at?), I could do some serious damage.

I’m looking at you Nespresso machines. For starters.

If you have an Aeroplan account, you can earn 5X the miles on the site as well, which you can then redeem for things like Shop.ca gift cards. Double win! If you’re on Twitter and/or Facebook, definitely make sure to follow Shop.Ca because they’ve got great gift ideas posted and they’ll even help you find the perfect gift just by tweeting with the hashtag #ReInventTheMall. You’ll also find a helpful shopping guide on their site for all the lovely people in your life.

Happy Shopping!! Feel free to email me for my Christmas list. #Kidding #NotKidding

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how-to-train-your-dragon-2-blu-ray-cover-57

We have a weekly family movie night with the kids every Friday Night at our house. It involves everyone in their jammies, sprawled on the sectional with blankets and snacks and inevitably ends with either me or the husband falling asleep while the kids laugh at us.

This past week we watched How to Train Your Dragon 2 with the help of a fun package we received in the mail. The kids and I are huge fans of the first movie so we looked forward to watching the second one. Along with the DVD/Blu-ray, we received plates/cups/napkins/stickers/decorations and some fun activity/colouring sheets. Normally, we don’t go to this much trouble before sitting down to watch a movie but when it arrives at your door, I’m all for it. The kids were totally into it – even the 10 year old, who is too cool for everything these days, enjoyed himself.

First, I decorated the fireplace, while my daughter naturally posed with the DVD in hand.

dragonsmovienight

Then, I set the table – plates I can throw away, instead of wash are my new favourite thing.

dragonsmovienight-table

Then I set the kids up with the activity sheets while I got dinner ready – ie. put the pizza on the plates. Watch out Martha Stewart.

dragonsmovienight

And then the brood watched the movie, without killing each other which is always a lovely bonus.

dragonsmovienight

How to Train Your Dragon 2 takes place five years after the first movie, where we find Hiccup and Toothless still together and inseparable friends. They discover a secret ice cave with hundreds of wild dragons and the dangerous Dragon Rider. This leads to a battle between both worlds, with Hiccup and Toothless and all their friends in a fight to save the future of both man and dragon. Of course, there are surprises and heartbreak, but I’ll spare you the details so I don’t ruin it for you.

The kids really enjoyed the movie, especially the second time around, and making it a theme night with fun activities, made it that much more fun. Want to have your own fun night? To start, you’re going to need the DVD/Blu-ray and I’m giving away a copy right here. Check out the trailer below if you haven’t seen it and please enter below to win – the giveaway is open to Canadian residents only.

 
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Nov
17

Monster High Freaky Fusion – Giveaway

by MARIA on November 17, 2014

To celebrate the latest Monster High movie – Monster High Freaky Fusion – I have a great giveaway, just in time for the holidays!!

Do you know what it feels like to go on the adventure of a lifetime? During the Bite-Centennial, the ghouls discover an old scientist’s workshop and travel back 200 years to the beginning of Monster High. But when they try to get home, they go through a vortex that fuses some of the ghouls together! With the help of the Hybrids, the new monsters in school, they learn how to control their combined flaws and together face their greatest challenge…to Save Frankie!

So what does this giveaway, valued at just under $148 include??

Monster High Freaky Fusion Blue-Ray DVD Combo Pack – MSRP $30.99

monster-high-freaky-fusion-dvd

Two dolls from the Monster High Freaky Fusion “Fusions” Doll Assortment (CCB25) – MSRP $29.99

  • Lagoonafire – a mix of Lagoona Blue and Jinafire Long
  • Dracubecca – a fusion of Draculaura and Robecca Steam
  • Clawvenus – a blend of Clawdeen Wolf and Venus McFlytrap
  • Cleolie – a combination of Cleo de Nile and Toralei
  • Neighthan Rot – a unicorn-zombie boy

monster-high-monster-fusion

The Monster High Freaky Fusion Frankie Recharge Chamber (BJR46) – MSRP $56.99

monster-high-freaky-fusion

To enter, use Rafflecopter below! This giveaway is open to Canadians only, and will end NOVEMBER 24, 2014!! GOOD LUCK!

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Nov
14

Game On With Mattel #GameOn #AnytimeIsGameTime

by MARIA on November 14, 2014

mattel-game-on I love a good board game.

As kids, we played board games all the time and I knew as a mom, that I wanted to share the fun of a great board game with my kids too.

As soon as they could play, we introduced board games to our children. Every birthday and every Christmas season, the kids would get a new one as a present.

We regularly play board games as a family as well, at least once a week. With electronics limited to just weekends, the kids will often be somewhere in the house playing a board game together….I just follow the sounds of fighting and/or laughter to find them.

When Mattel approached me about their Game On promotion, it was a no brainer. We love so many of Mattel’s board games – Apples to Apples and Blokus are on regular rotation, so the kids were excited about trying some new games.

image (4) A few days later, a big colourful box arrived (yes we still have the actual box – evidently the eight year old could not part with such a “colourful box for her stuffies”). We received four Mattel board games:

* UNO

* BIG PICTURE APPLES TO APPLES

* MAD GAB

* BOUNCE OFF

The kids immediately opened Bounce Off to try it out, and mass giggling ensued as did balls bouncing all over the place. Eventually they actually tried playing it according to the rules and had a great time. They’ve played it a few times since and each time they seem to get better at figuring out how to bounce the ball in order to actually get it into the grid.

They’ve also played UNO several times together – they easily figured out how to play and they love it. This one is a classic that anyone can play and have fun playing. This one travels well as well – great one to bring along on a trip.

However, if we had to choose one, our family would pick Apples to Apples hands down. We received the Big Picture version of the game for this promotion but we’ve owned Apples to Apples for years and it’s the game that makes us laugh non-stop every time. It’s so much fun and the kids and adults laugh hysterically. It’s the only game I know what is equally appealing to kids and adults. The Big Picture version finally allows younger kids to enjoy this great game – and it is fantastic. You can not go wrong with Apples to Apples as family entertainment – this one definitely needs to be part of your game night rotation.

mattel - board-games

With the holidays just around the corner, Mattel offers great gift ideas at great price points. All their games are really affordable, and can be purchased in Canada at Target, Walmart, ToysRUs, and Chapters/Indigo.

Would you like a chance to win a Mattel board game? Mattel believes that Anytime is Game Time, and to prove it, they’re holding a 24 hour contest every week for 25 weeks on their FB page. Make sure to follow their page and their Twitter account, so you don’t miss a chance to enter to win.

Mattel is also the maker of the very popular game Pictionary, and if you haven’t seen it yet, you must watch this video of the Pictionary Mall Surprise filmed at Sherway Gardens in Toronto – it’s so much fun. I would have loved to experience that first hand. It’s very cool – so watch it. I insist.


My 8yo is still trying to figure out how to get that giant bear stuffy in her bedroom. I think I’ll stop complaining about her regular sized stuffies now.

So go, play a board game because it doesn’t matter what time it is – ANYTIME IS GAME TIME.

*Disclaimer: I was sent board games for the purposes of this review, but my opinions are my own.*

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