A Batman bed and room for a little boy…

What do you do when you have a girlie-green dollhouse bunkbed that a 4 year old boy is about to inherit?  When you are one of the Bargains family, you think, think, and think some more, get a little crazy, and come up with the idea to make the dollhouse bunkbed into the Batcave.   Our son is wild for superheroes, and really wanted a “bad guy” room (he calls superheroes “bad guys” for some reason- always has.  The bad ones are “really” bad I guess??)  A Batman bed and room it was for our little guy!

It took a bit of paint, a LOT of hours of designing (because the rocks had to look just “so” and some creative thinking (it isn’t easy to put a secret door panel into a bed, although totally doable) and when you add elements like:

Batman drawer pulls….

“Metropolis” (Valspar)colored paint on an already-made bookshelf…

An Etsy ordered lampshade, a lightswitch cover from Ebay & memory board made to match the super-cool Pottery Barn Kids Batman sheets…

batman lampbatman sheets

boys batman room

well…sometimes you end up with a Batman themed room that you think (hope, pray?) your son can love and enjoy and grow up with for many years…

batman bed(Note the toy that inspired this all…the Imaginext Batcave!)

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Kids Frugal Fun: Columbus Day Ship

Each week Mom on Dealz brings us a craft that is fun, educational, and frugal. Next week is Columbus Day so she  decided to make a ship with things they found around the house.

 

Columbus Day Ship [click to continue…]

Cranium Brain Breaks: Great for #FamilyGameNight (Giveaway)

Another great game from the folks at Cranium is here- and you’re going to want to grab it fast!!  Full of over 200 different games that are all able to be played in under 1 minute, CRANIUM BRAIN BREAKS offers family friendly fun for all ages, and the small packaging means its totally portable- teachers, doctors, friends, family, just about anyone will love to own this fun game!

I love the classic elements of this game, combined with the fast pace of each individual game- being able to play games in 1 minute can really make for some fun times- and also keep everyone’s attention better than perhaps some longer games might, especially for the younger kids. If you are going to have Family Game Night anytime soon, add this to your must- have list! [click to continue…]

Newmark Learning: Around The Clock Fiction Parent Involement Kit Giveaway

Now that school is back in session, it is time to help your little ones learn even more! Learning is not just for school, but can be incorporated into your everyday life! Driving through town to run errands you can easily find colors, numbers and animals or places that you can have your child identify. You can play learning board games, watch educational videos and even cook with your kids to teach them things like math, time and reading. Reading is probably one of the favorite ways to learn! You get to explore new places, travel to far away lands, see how to live like a farm animal or even become a fairy and fly!

Finding new ways to help our little ones learn is easy with Newmark Learning. Newmark Learning is a great source for teachers, homeschooling parents and parents who just want to improve their child’s mind! Newmark Learning offers everything you need to help your little learners succeed in all of their school subjects; Math, Social Studies, Fiction and Science. Search their learning products by grade or subject or if you are on a budget, by price point.

Newmark Learning is dedicated to helping you find tools and strategies that are easy to use and offer the most support for you and your child. Below is an example of one of their Kindergarten Learning Tools- Hickory Dickory Dock.

Kindergarten (Levels C– E)

Hickory Dickory Dock (Level D)  
Literacy Supports:
  • Developmental print placement
  • Direct photo/picture support
  • High-frequency word at the beginning of every line

ABOUT NEWMARK LEARNING:
At Newmark Learning, we know that teachers have many standards to address and many kinds of learners to support. That’s why our number one goal is to bring you tools and strategies that are easy to use, reflect state curriculum standards, and are based on research-proven strategies. Whether you need whole-group lessons, small-group reading texts, intervention resources, or learning center activities, you’ll find them here.

Our family has developed resources and provided professional development to educators for decades. We know that teachers have one of the most important and challenging jobs, and that’s why we are committed to supporting you with the highest-quality resources.

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Myself and the rest of the Mavens of Money have teamed up with Newmark Learning to offer you a chance to win this Around The Clock Fiction Parent Involement Kit ($35 value). Fiction Parent Involvement Kit includes 8 Rising Readers Leveled Nursery Rhyme books, Personal Journal, and Parent Guide.

Here is what you need to do to enter this great giveaway!

Mandatory Entry:
Head on over to Newmark Learning, look through their great learning tools and then come back here and tell us what item you would love to have for your child. (Please enter your answer in the form below! Comments on this post will not count towards the mandatory entry.)

Additional Entries:
Simply “like” any or all of the pages listed below (comments are welcomed but are not required)

Enter Giveaway:
Simply fill out the form below to be entered into this giveaway

There is only one mandatory entry for this giveaway and must be completed before any additional entries will be counted. This giveaway will end at 11:59pm Eastern Time on Saturday October 22, 2011. One winner will be selected at random. The winner will then be contacted via email listed with their entry. The winner will then have 48 hours to respond with their mailing information or a new winner will be selected. [click to continue…]

Learning Resources Snap-n-Learn Shape Butterflies (Giveaway)

My little one is always wanting to play with her older brother and sister’s building toys and manipulatives.  The problem is that her hands are too little and her fine motor skills are not ready for her to successfully use their toys and games as they do- and she gets frustrated.  I looked  to find an age appropriate toy that will make her feel like a “big kid” that will offer her a developmentally appropriate way to develop the skills she wants so badly to master as her siblings have.  The Snap n Learn Shape Butterflies from Learning Resources do exactly that!

Cute, chunky shapes are easy for little hands to grasp.

  • Helps children practice shape recognition (circle, star, heart, square, triangle), colors and fine motor skills as they match up the shapes and snap on the wings
  • Includes five 3-piece butterflies (heads, wings, bodies) measuring 3.75″L x 2.75″H when complete
  • Stores in handy bucket
  • Ages 2+

These shapes are actually a lot of fun for even my 4 year old – and with the convenient container with a built in handle, easy to keep the pieces together, lots of fun for little ones for fine motor skills and imaginative play!  They are the perfect size for little hands and parents can rest easy that the materials are quality and non toxic. 

One of my readers will win a set of the Snap-n-Learn Shape Butterflies



I received a sample of this product to facilitate my review.  Opinions are my own.

TruKid Natural Skincare (Giveaway)

TruKid is a company that makes safe, natural, non toxic skincare products for kids. They also work well.  As a mom, I like knowing that when I put this brand on my kids, or let them use it on themselves, it’s a worry free deal for me.   It may not be the least expensive product but to be honest, my kids have all broken out in rashes and or hives at one point or another from mainstream skincare products, so if I have to spend a little bit more and rest assured their skin won’t have a reaction, that’s worth it to me.  Plus buying remedies for reactions adds up VERY quickly!!)  We’ve used TruKid before and will continue to use it for the years to come.   They sent us a few of their products to try out- all of which we adore.

Helping Hand Wash: Aside from smelling great, and being easy to use for even my 2 year old, I love having this dispenser in my bathroom. I love the fun design, albeit simple, and the cues for non readers to know this is to use on your hands withe orange hand outline on it.  Works great, and I like knowing that there are no harmful chemicals as ingredients when my kids wash their hands, especially with the little one potty training and washing hands 30 times a day it seems! 

The kids like the fun design (they noticed the green on the pump immediately- which means that they are less resistant to washing.  Whatever makes that part of life be less of a battle, sign me up.  They like the smell too! [click to continue…]

Emergen-C Kidz® to the (preventive) rescue!

This year, with 2 kids in elementary school, I’m being more sure than ever to take preventive measures to keep my family healthy over the next several cold weather months.  My kids get sick, and more often than not a simple cold turns into an ear infection.  One of the things we do as a family is to have vitamin supplements as part of our daily routine- and with the kids, Emergen-C Kidz® is a fun, bubbly way to get some extra vitamin C into my little ones to give their immune systems a boost.  

I myself have used the adult version of this product for a few years and was really happy that they were offering a kid’s version now- previously my kids were just taking smaller doses of the adult stuff.  (Just trust me when I tell you NOT to put a sippy cup lid on Emergen-C anything- can make a mess!!) Each packet of Emergen-C Kidz is loaded with great flavor (grape, orange and fruit punch- flavors kids LOVE), lots of immunity boosting vitamins, antioxidants and electrolytes , and lots of FUN with the fizz!!  My kids are big fans of the orange and punch- they love all things orange- grape’s never been “hot” in this house in any product except for me- but they like it well enough.  Given a choice, they’ll jump for orange every time…

Aside from the great taste (and versatility- you can decide how “strong” you mix the packets- less water=stronger flavor), the boxes are recyclable and the inks on the boxes are vegetable-based.  So not only are the folks at Alacer Corp thinking about preventive measures for our immune systems, but they are aware of the impact they have on the earth.  Win, win. [click to continue…]

Chicken Joe Forgets Something Important (Giveaway)

Fun songs, engaging characters, silly names, themes of friendship and a whole lot of silly make for a GREAT package in Chicken Joe Forgets Something Important Book and CD combo!  This was an instant hit with all three kids- and passed the reading aloud test with Mr. Bargains.  The stars were aligned when this book and cd were created.  The humor speaks to all ages and its really just plain fun to read the story aloud or listen to the music in the car!!  Its hard to not want to find out more about Chicken Joe who is actually  a cat!!

Chicken Joe, the cat who sleeps in the hen house, is happily dreaming about rock and roll. A rooster’s raucous crow wakes him up way too early. Everyone on the farm knows today is a special day, but in his sleepy morning haze, Chicken Joe can’t remember just what it is. Even Joe’s best friend, a city dog named Miss Kitty, won’t tell him. Find out why this is Chicken Joe’s big day in Chicken Joe Forgets Something Important, the latest book-and-CD release from The Secret Mountain (September 6, 2011).   [click to continue…]