Happy Thanksgiving!



Wishing all my readers a very healthy and happy Thanksgiving! Safe travels and may your stuffing be perfect! The girls have the entire Thanksgiving week off from school. We have been busy decorating, baking and making the house a giant mess. I am actually thankful for the toys scattered about the house. It means  I […]

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Celebrate Spring With The Magic of Butterflies

Mar 22, 2017

As the mountains of snow start to melt, it is finally starting to feel more like spring. This is the time of year we get outside more and watch everything spring to life again. Including winged creatures. Some are beautiful and some are down right annoying when they go buzzing by. But I bet everyon...

Let It Go DIY Essential Oil Playdough

Mar 15, 2017

Today we experienced the craziest snowstorm in our children’s lives! They watched out of the window for almost an hour with stunned looks on their faces as the snow fell. “Wow. Look at all that snow!” That hour gave me a little time to prep some fun things to do since we are now home-bound during t...

40 Days of Change Even if You Don’t Celebrate Lent

Mar 8, 2017

The Internet is abuzz with different challenges you can do with your family during the 40 Days of Lent. There is the de-cluttering challenge to eliminate 40 bags of stuff in 40 days. The 40 Acts challenge to do 40 random acts of kindness in 40 days. And the challenge to just give up something you l...

Travel to Springfield Museums Worth The Trip

Mar 1, 2017

If you are looking for something fun to do during the kids spring break then check out Springfield Museums in Springfield, MA. Located approximately two hours from Northern Ulster County it is an easy day trip for families with little ones. One admission price grants access to all four museums on c...

Save The Date to Brave The Shave

Feb 22, 2017

Every March thousands of brave souls around the country come out to do something crazy. They shave their long locks of hair for money. That may sound a little weird to you if you haven’t heard of the St. Baldrick’s Foundation before. If you have not yet had the chance to be a part of a ...

The Den of Marbletown A Fun Family Day Out

Feb 15, 2017

Did you know about this adorable, family friendly Teddy Bear museum in Marbletown? During a fall open house, my family and I visited the Den which is set back from the road on 209. The Den of Marbletown is simply adorable and perfect for any teddy bear fanatic! There are a ton of different bears di...

5 Fun Activities for President’s Day

Feb 8, 2017

So far we have had a dreary couple of days of crazy winter weather. The temps have been up and down. We have had rain, snow, sleet and ice. It doesn’t feel like a really colorful time of year. Thankfully February brings some fun colorful activities into our world.  We do a lot to celebrate Valentin...

Heartsy Valentine Fine Motor Craft

Feb 1, 2017

What is fine motor skills anyway? Basically fine motor functions include the muscle groups needed for handwriting and hand eye coordination. Focusing on crafts and art activities that require kids to use small and coordinated movements helps build on those skills and develop those muscles. My kids a...

I Heart Bookmarks for #Valentines Day

Jan 25, 2017

After sharing about our wonderful experience at the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art I signed up to follow along on the museum’s Facebook page. I am glad I did because I found this tutorial video on their page! How cute are these bookmarks? They are easier to make than they look! I very ...

Visit The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art

Jan 18, 2017

A few months ago we decided not to throw our kids a birthday party. I know, how horrible. Instead we took a week-long vacation in the Berkshires. I get that sounds all pretentious but I swear we are average folks. I smuggle my peanut butter jelly sandwiches into places just like every other mom. Bu...

7 Places to Plan For Fun in 2017

Jan 11, 2017

Last week I shared the Top 5 Fun Activities my kids enjoyed in 2016. This week I am sharing with you our most favorite places to visit. We did a lot more traveling this year than what I’ve shared on the blog. I just haven’t had time to update you all on the details yet. We tend to stick to local pl...

Our Top 5 Favorite Activities of #2016

Jan 4, 2017

Happy 2017 Everybody! As the new year begins I like to take a look back at what worked for us during the previous year. I always wonder if there are any traditions, or fun activities we’d do again. I like to look over the photos we took on our adventures through the year and relive the fun. ...

5 Ways to Reuse Shipping Boxes

Dec 28, 2016

So this was a crazy week at my house. I had a lovely stomach bug that set me back an entire weekend and made for a crazy week of catching up. As a result I was busy rushing around, maybe a little too fast, and smashed my hand. I thought I broke my thumb, but thankfully it is just a wicked sprain. F...

Celebrating the First Breakfast of the New Year

Dec 21, 2016

When I was a kid New Year’s Eve was so exciting! My parents would let us stay up until Midnight to take us out to breakfast. We called it “First Breakfast” because it was literally the first breakfast of the New Year. One year we went to the diner with my parents and their friends, another year the ...

7 Fun Things to Do with Bubble Wrap

Dec 14, 2016

So this is a record breaking Christmas season here at the “casa de Whatever.” Not only did my husband and I put the tree up and decorate it without a complaint, but this is also the first time in a decade he has his Christmas shopping finished the first week of December. I know… give that man a rou...

Charitable Giving is a Christmas Tradition

Dec 7, 2016

When I was growing up we didn’t have a lot of traditions. We actually mixed things up year to year. There are a few traditions I keep up with my own children, and we introduce a new one here and there. But one tradition that remains the same year after year is our tradition of charitable giving. I ...

DIY #Toothfairy Bags for #Kids

Nov 30, 2016

I cannot believe my “twinadoes” are turning 6 already! The time has really gone by quick! This year instead of throwing them a big party we decided to treat them to a week long vacation. Smack dab in the middle of all that planning and packing, the first wiggly tooth arrived! My kids ha...

5 Simple Crafts for Kids on Thanksgiving

Nov 23, 2016

Back in the day when I was just an auntie and had no children of my own, Thanksgiving seemed like such a warm and carefree holiday. I loved getting up early to get our feast started. I’d peel, boil and bake my way through hours of the early morning. I’d pass the time waiting for dinner with my niec...

Granting Christmas Wishes for Local Families

Nov 16, 2016

Last week I shared with you 8 No Crap Christmas Gift Ideas that will leave you with very little to take care of after the wrapping hits the floor. Actually, I leaked that post one week earlier than planned. I was leaving for vacation and technology was not my friend when I tried to schedule my post...

5 Thoughts for a “No Crap Christmas”

Nov 2, 2016

How crazy is it that we had snow four days before Halloween? Then, the very next day it’s a typical fall day? I expected a nice dusting of snow that we could simply leave a few foot prints in on our way to school, and then it would all melt away. But noooo. I had to break out the shovels!  While my...

8 No Crap Christmas Gift Ideas

Nov 2, 2016

Last week I shared my thoughts for putting less crap under the tree this year. I want to be able to manage the things we bring into our home, and still allow my kids the excitement of Christmas. First, I am taking a look at what my kids already own and how they like to spend their play time. We alr...

How to Make Apple Pops with Kids

Oct 26, 2016

I really love making candied apples in the fall. But that hard shell coating can be difficult for little ones to bite through. Chocolate, or caramel dipped apples can be so much easier for little ones to eat. Except that my kids never finish an entire apple by themselves. I usually cut it into slic...

Making Paper Lanterns at Home

Oct 19, 2016

This weeks craft is short and sweet and it is inspired by my friend Anne. We were outside at a Halloween party this weekend when I mentioned I was in need of something fun for us to do this week after school. I wanted something different and artsy all at once. Her suggestion for paper lanterns had m...

5 Easy Kid Projects to Enjoy This Fall

Oct 12, 2016

Living in the Hudson Valley means we have an abundance of festivals, street fairs, art shows, car shows and places to go every weekend. There are so many things to do all year long, but when fall hits it can seem like there’s just so much more to try to fit into the weekend! I always want to make th...

Apples to Art: Painting with the Fall Harvest

Oct 5, 2016

Apples are every where this time of year. It seems everyone spends their weekend out picking apples, or baking sweet apple treats. Apple picking is by far one of the most routine fall activities, and a very popular family tradition. We haven’t been able to get out just yet to harvest our bount...

Making Paper Hand Puppets

Sep 28, 2016

The fall weather seems to have arrived in one fell swoop over the weekend! It was super-hot one day and the next, just as cool and crisp as a freshly fallen apple. I admit I was lured outside by the bright blue sky, the calming breeze and sunlight. There were so many different ways to spend our Sat...

Avoid After School Meltdown Through Art

Sep 21, 2016

Just as I was sending my kids off to Kindergarten some seasoned friends told me about the after school meltdown. I didn’t think it would be an issue since my kids already spent 5 half days a week in pre-K. They also meltdown about so many things how would I know it was just an end of the day meltdo...

Running Down Neuroblastoma (Pediatric Cancer)

Sep 14, 2016

The month of September is designated as Pediatric Cancer Awareness month which is a cause very near and dear to my heart. My niece is a 14 year cancer survivor and I saw first hand just how deeply this disease effected her and my entire family. To honor her and the many thousands of children fightin...

Photography 101: Get Your Kids Behind the Lens

Sep 7, 2016

Like most kids today, my children don’t know what life is like without mommy snapping 50 million pictures of nearly every minute of their lives.  So it is only natural that they are curious about using my camera. A few summers ago, I picked up a small Fuji digital camera at a garage sale for around...

Kid-Friendly Tunes for Parents

Sep 1, 2016

Ever catch yourself in the moment driving down an open road, wind whipping through your hair and music blaring? You are belting out a tune like you ARE the next American Idol? Maybe the lyrics are something like, “I took a pill in Ibiza…and when I finally got sober I felt ten years olde...

Storing Mementos and Photos from Your Adventures

Aug 25, 2016

At the end of every summer I am left with a big pile of ticket stubs, mini golf score cards, park maps and parking passes from all of our adventures. I hate to throw them away because they make a fun touchstone to all the fun we’ve had. I love to look back at them and remember the stories of each ad...

First Day & Back To School Traditions

Aug 16, 2016

The new school year is officially twenty days away from today. I am ready with all of our school supplies, back up supplies, lunch menus and first day of school outfits. Every year I print out a fun little photo prop for my girls to hold while I take their picture in front of their new school. This...

Making Seed Bombs to Feed The Bees

Aug 11, 2016

At the beginning of summer I shared with all of you a list of cool places to get free fun mail for your kids. I hope you and the kids are enjoying all your fun freebies. I know we are! In fact one fun package in particular helped inspire our seed bomb project. I signed us up to receive a free packet...

Found Art In The Belly of The Bobcat

Aug 4, 2016

Tucked away on a tiny lot which you probably pass every time you make your way through the village of Catskill, is the Catamount. This kooky little people’s museum is fun for all ages. It is quite unique and if you pass by too quickly you will miss it. It sits just above street level and blends righ...

Animal Land Adventure -Day Trip

Jul 28, 2016

If you have lived in the Hudson Valley for more than five minutes I  guarantee you have run into someone talking about The Catskill Game Farm. I was lucky I made one trip with the school kids I used to work with. So, I was able to see it in its glory. But my kids will never get to see it. Last year ...

Pick Your Own Berries at Mead Orchard

Jul 21, 2016

It seems the new parenting trend this summer is to give our kids a “70’s summer.” As in the 1970’s. The decade mostly known for crazy fashions, zero child safety laws and an abundance of TAB cola. Back then, parents just didn’t hover in the same way we do today. Kids w...

How To Get FREE Fun Mail For Your Kids

Jul 14, 2016

As a blogger I get a lot of fun things in the mail to review. I can get several packages a week delivered to my door. Each time my kids ask, “is that for me?” Of course I have to break the bad news and tell them, “Nope. This one is for mommy too.” After seeing their disappoi...

Gift Giving A Guide For Less Crap

Jul 7, 2016

Lately, I am feeling really bogged down by how much stuff we have. More specifically, how much stuff my kids have.  It seems I have become the keeper of the stuff as I am the only qualified person to manage the 10,000 pieces of art my kids create and find a home for the millions of stuffed lovies t...

Stress Less Handwriting Practice

Jun 30, 2016

My twins are officially preschool graduates and moving on to Kindergarten. I have so many mixed emotions. On the one hand I am so proud of their hard work and excited to watch their next steps, and on the other hand I am emotional about them growing up way too fast. We are now on summer break and a...

Jun 30, 2016

My twins are officially preschool graduates and moving on to Kindergarten. I have so many mixed emotions. On the one hand I am so proud of their hard work and excited to watch their next steps, and on the other hand I am emotional about them growing up way too fast. We are now on summer break and a...

Personalized Children’s Thank You Cards

Jun 23, 2016

I know I am one of the last few moms on the planet that fully insists her children send thank you cards. We send them after birthday parties, for the surprise gift and for holiday gifts from friends and family. And now we send them to our teachers at the end of the year. Everyone likes to be thanke...

Helping Our Kids Cope through Art

Jun 16, 2016

This week we have witnessed a cluster of very tragic events in our country. Some far away from the safety of our home and some locally in places we may shop regularly. I knew I couldn’t write this post as “business as usual.” It is hard for me to write about the fun crafty things ...

Make A Beautiful Noise With an Outdoor Xylophone

Jun 3, 2016

Last week I shared that I am starting our own back yard summer camp as our last hoorah before Kindergarten. The girls are pretty on board with this idea and I am looking forward to saving some money. It gets expensive sending two off to camp at once. Plus, I just want to squeeze out as much time as...

Create a Back Yard Summer Camp

Jun 2, 2016

The end of the school year is only a few weeks away. The subject of summer camp started floating around in mid-April. I find  that most camps run only one week. And if they run longer it can get pretty pricey, especially for two kids. Even a one week camp for $55 per kid can break our budget for su...

Enjoy Lake George Like a Local

May 26, 2016

Over the weekend I got the chance to take a trip to Lake George without kids. Can you believe it? I cashed in my Mother’s Day gift from my husband for a one night getaway for a moms only weekend. I met up with my friend (and fellow mom) who is a local to Lake George so she gave me the family f...

Destination Adventure at Mohonk Visitor Center

May 19, 2016

At the beginning of every summer I try to round up a few new places to visit with the kids. Now that my kids are getting older they are outgrowing some of the play spaces  we used to visit. One thing that hasn’t changed is their desire to explore. Last month our family signed up for a free He...

A Day On Michael’s Farm

May 12, 2016

Oh you haven’t heard of Micheal’s farm yet? Maybe that’s because it is nestled in a quiet little nook just between Saugerties and Woodstock. It is a private farm owned and operated by Tammy Drost, a woman with a big heart and a true love of animals and kids. Michael’s Farm is...

Mayan Tin Art For Rainy Day Color

May 5, 2016

These gloomy days really help the colors of spring pop don’t they? In my neighborhood we can see the bright yellows and pinks jumping out against the green backgrounds. They seem so much brighter and bring a little color to the dreariness. This week my girls and I are inspired to create someth...

Gratitude for Our Community Helpers

Apr 28, 2016

A few weeks ago some friends of mine organized a dinner drop off at a local fire station as a way to say thank you for all their hard work. Several families came out to deliver meals, cards and treats. I’ve shared before how my kids and I bring cookies to the fire station at Christmas. But our...

Creative Craft Kits for Kids

Apr 21, 2016

It is simply amazing the amount of pre-made craft kits available for kids today! I know I date myself when I say this, “in my day we had to make everything ourselves!” But it’s true! Every holiday we made our own decorations; we recycled all our egg cartons and milk cartons into s...

Beach Souvenir: My 31 Cent Recycle Project

Apr 14, 2016

We have been on a huge spring cleaning rush over here. After five years of just shoving things higher and higher out of the reach of small hands, we find ourselves just living in piles of stuff. I don’t need to share with you how to spring clean because you all know how to do that right? But, ...

April 24th Autism Walk & Expo

Apr 7, 2016

I want to share with you one of my family’s favorite events to attend every year: The Autism Walk & Expo of the Hudson Valley. We look forward to heading to the Dutchess County Fairgrounds every April for this event! This walk event is super family friendly and it is the biggest annual fundrais...

Sowing A Love For Growing Things

Mar 31, 2016

Spring is officially here! The days are lighter longer and starting to warm up. It’s the perfect time to start planning a garden. Every year I say I’m going to grow everything and I make a plan, but someones cat will crush my tomatoes, or the pumpkins grow into the zucchinis. Learning to...

Less Is More: A Fun Yet Practical Easter Basket

Mar 24, 2016

Easter was never about over the top gifts and decorations when I was a kid. My mom always made it personal and special. From the individual loaves of Italian Easter Bread to the carefully assembled family Easter basket, we all knew she put some time and effort into our holiday. It was very different...

Homemade Rainbows

Mar 17, 2016

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!! This week has been all about rainbows at our house. We’ve colored rainbows, made macaroni art rainbows and now we are making homemade water color paints in rainbow colors of course! Have you watched that video going viral on Facebook of how to make water color...

We’re All a Little Irish One Day a Year

Mar 10, 2016

Hello fine friends and readers! Are you gearing up for St. Patty’s Day? Maybe you are ready to breeze passed the day like any other day. Well, this year my kids are so beyond excited to celebrate! They have created an elaborate “top secret” plan for a Leprechaun trap. I’m no...

Creating Outside Art

Mar 3, 2016

Today I registered my twins for Kindergarten. It was easier than I thought, especially when I saw their excitement. I think I was mostly nervous about how they would respond. I imagined them kicking and screaming that they wouldn’t want to go. Thankfully, no protest and they charmed everyone w...

Celebrating Galentine’s Day At The Body Art Barn

Feb 25, 2016

This week I took a break from the kid stuff to focus on having some fun for myself. I grabbed a crew of my mom friends and hit the silks at a local Aerial Yoga class at The Body Art Barn in Blooming Grove, NY. We chose this adventure to celebrate a belated Galentine’s Day (traditionally celeb...

Start a Family Game Night

Feb 18, 2016

When I am not crafting, dancing and looking for adventures with my kids we love our weekly game nights. It gives us time to blow off steam at the end of the week and spend time together as a family. Our game nights get us through the darkness of winter and we can end our week on a high note. Friday...

My Whatever Valentine

Feb 11, 2016

Last week I was really feeling on top of things. I was ahead of the game a bit and had some work pre-loaded, laundry was put away and things felt pretty balanced. Then I got sick with some weird virus. For two whole days I was in bed. Doing nothing. Well, I was breathing, so that’s technicall...

Be My Scientist- A Fun Experiment for Valentine’s Day

Feb 4, 2016

My kids really love making hands on science experiments. They especially love anything that explodes bubbles or makes a mess. Me, I like a nice contained experiment the most. But, I digress. My kids are also really excited about Valentine’s Day. With the holiday right around the corner I thought it...

DIY Playdough

Jan 28, 2016

When my kids were toddlers I was very weary of letting them use store bought play dough. I know it says it’s not toxic, but my fear of them taking a giant bite out of a colorful pretend cookie kept me from purchasing.  I found this fabulous recipe and now I’m sharing with all of you! Every ingredie...

DIY Fossil Cookies

Jan 21, 2016

If you have been following along you already know my kids are dino obsessed. If this is your first time reading my blog let me catch you up on the obsession. Last spring we took a road trip to Mystic Aquarium and on our way home we stopped to see a giant fossil made by dinosaurs. My kids were in he...

Keep Kids Engaged Through Cooking

Jan 14, 2016

I was chatting with another mom at gymnastics class the other night and something she said stuck with me, “I just try to find things to keep her busy.” I thought, “Aren’t kids the busiest people we know?” They have their entire adult lives to be “busy,” but now is...

Indoor Wintertainment

Jan 7, 2016

Baby it’s cold outside in the Hudson Valley!! Brrr! I would almost rather be shoveling snow than feel the frigid whip of wind on my hands and face. Allllmost. This is the time of year I think we all go a little stir crazy inside the same four walls, yet no one wants to go outside to play. Som...

Family Fun on New Year’s Eve

Dec 31, 2015

  The elves have all packed up and returned to the North Pole. Santa has retired to the Caribbean for a much deserved vacation. So, what’s left for the New Year holiday? As a parent with really little ones you may be wondering the same. Here are some really fun ways to usher in the New Y...

Here It is The Eve of Christmas

Dec 24, 2015

Here it is, the eve of Christmas. Are you all ready? Did you make all your Pinterest crafts and wrap all the gifts? Or, will it be a marathon night of wrapping? Did you send out the perfect holiday cards, or make sure you at least had the perfect family holiday pics taken? If not, then don’t ...

DIY Magic Reindeer Food- A Christmas Eve Tradition

Dec 17, 2015

Have you ever heard of magic reindeer food? Last year we were given a packet from Santa during one of the Christmas events we attended. My kids couldn’t wait to sprinkle it outside for the reindeer on Christmas Eve! Just like that a new tradition was born! Now, we let the girls sneak outside ...

Set A Place For Santa – DIY Cookie Plate

Dec 10, 2015

I don’t know about you, but every year around Christmas I experience delusions of grandeur. I think, “THIS is the year everything will sparkle, and glisten and drip with Christmas cheer!!” But, then I run out of time and I realize if we want clean clothes and food to eat I need to scale...

Hudson Valley Charitable Giving Guide

Dec 3, 2015

This week the girls and I delivered 25 Birthday Swag Bags that we collected through the month of November. Our friends were very generous in helping us make this sizable donation. I am so thankful 25 local families will get to celebrate a birthday with some special decorations and a birthday cake. ...

Fun Activities For Thanksgiving Day

Nov 26, 2015

Whether you are traveling or staying home, keep this list handy! Thanksgiving day can be a long day for little ones. Adults have so much to do to prepare for that kids can feel left out. Watching TV is a great way to keep the kids corralled in another room and away from the kitchen, but really litt...

Give A Kid The Gift of Swag!

Nov 19, 2015

This week the girls and I set aside the crafts to work on a unique service project! We are collecting birthday swag to deliver to the People’s Place Thrift Store & Food Pantry in Kingston. The Birthday Booth started in May 2015 when participants began asking for help providing birthday ca...

5 Thankful Traditions For Teaching Kids Gratitude

Nov 12, 2015

Growing up I really didn’t have many Thanksgiving traditions. My mother was a single mom and often had to work most Thanksgiving holidays, so we were just thankful when we could all be home together for dinner. However, my siblings and I kind of set our own tradition for how we spent our day....

Graphic Novels for Young Kids

Nov 5, 2015

Illustration credit to Robert Geronimo as published in Little Maia’s Coral City Adventure. Does your kid get excited about comic books? My girls fell in love with comic books at age three. Mr. Whatever Mom is a self-professed comic book “geek.” Other than the most recognizable supe...

A Monster In My Salad Bowl- Finding Inspiration In The Ordinary

Oct 29, 2015

This week my girls discovered the McDonald’s salad container I was eating out of looked very similar to a UFO. So, they decided to decorate their own UFO’s in honor of Halloween! I know UFOs are not a traditional part of Halloween, but when you are five anything goes. Now, you can’...

Thinking Inside The Box For Craft Time

Oct 22, 2015

Each week the girls and I try to create our own projects. I scour Pinterest, or Facebook for ideas and we make them our own. I like to keep things simple. This week is so busy we are taking some help from the store. Well, more specifically a generous gift giver. The girls are using the gem mining ki...

Sensory Play With Water Beads

Oct 15, 2015

This week we are playing with water beads!! I don’t know who is more excited the kids or me! A friend (and Occupational Therapist) recommended these to me a while ago. When the girls preschool teacher gifted us with a set we couldn’t wait to try them out. Plumped up water beads are a gr...

7 Ways To Entertain A Sick Kid While You Are Sick

Oct 8, 2015

All my plans for this week have been stymied by that pesky cold virus. Not only are both my kids sick, but I am sick too. It is never a fair fight when mama is sick. The only thing I can do is just focus on survival. The girls missed two days of school to stay home and rest and to stop the free flo...

Be Prepared For Rainy Days

Oct 1, 2015

The next few days are supposed to be really rainy. Normally my kids and I enjoy playing in the rain. But, with an impending hurricane coming up with coast causing heavy winds… well, big trees and heavy winds do not mix well. So, we find ourselves inside until all the rain and 80 mile an hour ...

Connecting Art With Nature

Sep 24, 2015

The Fall weather is finally upon us and I couldn’t be happier! The mild temperature makes it easier to enjoy the outdoors. Each day we find something new and fun to do after preschool- from lunch at the park, to play dates and even painting and drawing outside. A very generous neighbor invite...

Use Your Kids Imagination as Inspiration

Sep 17, 2015

So excited to get a reader question! “Where do you find inspiration for your kid’s activities? Do you homeschool?” To answer, no I do not officially homeschool. We do find a lot of enriching and educational activities to do in our home (and beyond). I began introducing these types...

Sunday Drive Leads to Best Roadside Lunch!

Sep 10, 2015

One of my fondest childhood memories is taking a Sunday drive with my family. Our drives usually took us a few towns over and we could experience the sights and sounds of what was happening there. It wasn’t worldly travel, but it was a great way for me as a kid to see that life existed outside...

Your Stay At Home Mom Field Guide!

Sep 3, 2015

I am preparing our household for a year of Pre-K and I can’t stop thinking about how fast the years have gone by! I know every parent feels this same way, but I remember bringing home two newborns and thinking, “how will I survive the day with them all by myself?” In a flash my gir...

Ways To Stay Connected To Friends

Aug 27, 2015

If you have read any of my blogs this summer you know I have spent a lot of time finding adventures for me and the kids to enjoy. Well, this weekend I left them at home and celebrated my 40th birthday. Turning 40 wasn’t nearly as painful as I imagined. I still feel seventeen! I wish I had the...

Having A Blast At Trevor Zoo, Millbrook, NY

Aug 20, 2015

I am so thrilled that we can officially cross Trevor Zoo off of our Summer Bucket List!! After hearing so many moms talk about taking their kids we decided to find out what all the buzz is about. Trevor Zoo is located in Millbrook, NY. A fun fact about the zoo is it is actually part of a high schoo...

New Twist On A Classic Crispy Treat

Aug 13, 2015

I don’t know about you, but I am so happy the fall air is settling into our August nights. After a recent hot spell it feels nice to walk outside without the deep sizzling pain of the hot sun. OK, that’s a little dramatic. But, it really was too hot for us to be outside most days. So, t...

Day Tripping To Howe Caverns

Aug 6, 2015

Only a few weeks remain before we send the kids off to school. (I can hear you cheering from here). If you are looking for one last hoorah, or day trip with the kids be sure to check out Howe Caverns! Depending on where you are located in the Hudson Valley it is a 1-2 hour drive. If your kids are i...

Frozen Dino Smash – What’s More Fun?

Jul 30, 2015

Wow Hudson Valley is it hot enough for ya? Phwew!! I knew we were having a hot spell when I broke into a sweat getting out of bed. OK, that may be partly due to being out of shape. But, still it has been hot! So, after play dates at the pool, eating our ice cream, visiting the library and watching ...

Keeping Kids Cool With An Ice Cream Social

Jul 23, 2015

I have a child who is a total planner like me. She will set up a social event in a matter of minutes and spares no details: “Hey, mom you know what would be a great idea?” “What?” “An ice cream social!! We’ll need bowls and spoons and napkins! And, how about some...

Creating An Outdoor Mud Kitchen

Jul 16, 2015

When I was a preschooler you could find me playing in the mud. I drove my mom crazy with cleaning me up after a mud session, only to find me wandering back outside to find more mud. Sorry mom, it’s just good clean, messy fun! Is it any wonder my own children love playing in the mud? I actuall...

Our Day As Little Farmers

Jul 9, 2015

I have a secret fantasy to be a farmer. Seriously. I would love to be an actual farmer! My aunt and her family ran a dairy farm for many years. After seeing how messy cows and chickens are I have decided I’d like to grow veggies only. I day dream about riding on my tractor one lengthy row at ...

Storm King Art Center – Family Friendly Art

Jul 6, 2015

This summer my girls and I are on a search for free art! We enjoy creating our own art at home, but now that my girls are older we are looking for new ways to appreciate art, and inspire our creativity. The number one item on our Summer Bucket list this year is a visit to Storm King Art Center. Than...

Creating Unique Keepsakes at Boudoir Baby

Jun 25, 2015

Store window for Boudoir Baby 114 Partition St. Saugerties The Hudson Valley is so rich with creativity. I am always excited to find new ways to get creative. You know, minus all the crayons and glitter glue. Also, I am always on the look out for heart melting keepsakes. I found both at Boudoir Baby...

Free or Low Cost Art In The Hudson Valley

Jun 18, 2015

Every week I try to share some kind of easy craft or art project to help you keep the kids occupied. Well, this week I am lucky enough to see my own kids art in action! Their preschool adopted a cat to decorate and display in the Catin’ Around Catskills art show. These are precast cats that lo...

4 Low Sugar Snack Time Swaps for Kids

Jun 11, 2015

Sometimes I like to take a break from the crafting and make some fun things with food. My picky little eaters and I really enjoy getting creative in the kitchen! Recently, I gave our eating plan a sugar overhaul prompting me to get creative with our snacks! If your kids are like mine you have littl...

5 Simple Gifts To Thank A Teacher

Jun 4, 2015

It’s the time of year we all start to panic and worry about buying our kid’s teachers a thank you gift. This is the first year we have to think about end of year gifts. Honestly, I’m not worried. I have our gifts all picked out. But, I don’t really understand why moms get so...

Creating a Perpetual Mural

May 28, 2015

What a crazy week! I am burning through my  to-do list! Besides my usual duties as a chauffeur, chef and maid, I am catching up on some home improvement projects. It seems once you have children everything comes to a halt for oh, let’s say the first five years. With so many things happening a...

Adventures Of Working From Home . . . With My Kids.

May 21, 2015

  Here is a little behind the scenes look at the office of The Whatever Mom. It isn’t all crafty and educational fun. It gets messy, the kids get cranky and some days I just wanna pull my hair out trying to get everyone to listen. That’s just the daily stuff. But, when you work fro...

5 Mom And Me Date Night Ideas

May 14, 2015

Keeping up with the demands of being a wife and a mother is not easy. I feel like everyone wants a piece of my time. I realize how important it is to set aside time to be with my spouse.  It isn’t always easy, but as a married couple we need time to connect, catch up and remember why we love ...

8 Ways To Entertain Your Kids Without A TV

May 7, 2015

So here it is screen free week and I kicked it off by letting the kids watch TV while I cooked dinner. Ooops! In my defense we were screen free last week.  No,  I didn’t mix up my weeks. I just did not turn the TV on for a whole week. My kids also may be the only 4 1/2 year-olds without an iP...

Every Day Is Earth Day

Apr 30, 2015

So, last week I was so excited to share with you all the wonderful free services I found just by reading the Hudson Valley Parent blogs, that I forgot to share my recycling fun for Earth Day! That’s OK because Earth Day is every day right? Recycling has always been important to me. Growing up...

Take Some Free Thyme For Yourself

Apr 23, 2015

So, last week I shared with you how I was able to get some free home organizing for my office make over. This week, let me share with you my amazing day of indulgence and mom time (for free of course!). If you missed this months issue of Hudson Valley Parent you might have missed the article about m...

Hope For An Overwhelming Space Part II

Apr 16, 2015

So, back in February I shared Part I of my office makeover story. I included some behind the scenes perspective on working with a professional organizer. Hope Stuart of Apple A Day Organizing came to my house and helped me make over my sad little office. Now, I am ready to show you the after picture...

6 Tips For Keeping Your Car Road Ready For Summer

Apr 9, 2015

After a week of meeting up with friends at different parks, and a whirl wind trip to Mystic Connecticut, I am reminded that now is a good time to do a little automotive Spring cleaning and organizing. Plus, in a few short weeks my girls will begin their first soccer season. We need to be ready! Here...

Spring Cleaning the Art Cart- Watch Out Martha!

Apr 2, 2015

Spring is finally here! The temps haven’t broken 50 degrees just yet, but we have had two park play dates so far. The fresh air and the tiny bit of sunshine just feels so good! Dear summer heat I am ready whenever you are! You may, or may not, be making plans for spring cleaning. I like to try...

My One Year “Easterversary” Round Up!

Mar 26, 2015

I started blogging for Hudson Valley Parent one year ago this month! Woo hoo! Several of my first posts shared all the fun things we were doing to prepare for Easter. This year we’ve decided to scale back a bit and just keep it simple (mostly because I lost track of how early Easter is this ye...

3 SIMPLE TIPS FOR A SMOOTH MORNING

Mar 19, 2015

Confession: I thought being a SAHM meant I’d have more time. I’d have more time to enjoy my kids, make fun crafts, and organize our closets like Martha Stewart. None of that happens. I do enjoy my kids, but much of our day to day stuff is me cleaning up after them and making food they won’t eat. B...

Let Them Eat Pie!! Celebrating Pi Day With Your Kids.

Mar 12, 2015

Apples, peaches, pumpkin pie who wants Pi holler I! Who wants Pi? OK you can’t eat Pi because it’s a number, but you don’t have to be a math junkie to enjoy pie! According to Piday.org “Pi Day is celebrated on March 14th (3/14) around the world. Pi (Greek letter “p”) is the s...

5 Simple Ways to Bring Spring Into Your Home!

Mar 5, 2015

Beautiful spring colors found at Adam’s Spring Showcase One of our favorite places to go in the winter is the garden center at Adam’s. It is our winter time refuge! The girls and I love to grab a free cookie at the bakery and check out the greenhouse. The warm, humid air and the colorful...

Hope For An Overwhelming Space- Get A Makeover!

Feb 26, 2015

Is there a room in your house that as soon as you walk in you feel your pulse race and your mind start to whirl in confusion, “how did it get this way?” That room for  me is my home office. It has become a dumping ground for all of my unfinished projects, things I don’t want the kids to touch and t...

This Week- Our Chinese New Year Celebration!

Feb 19, 2015

Last week I introduced the girls to Mardi Gras with our crafts and cheater beingets. This week we are learning about Chinese New Year! The Chinese New Year celebrates family and hope for prosperity. Many families gather and give gifts of lucky money tucked inside red envelops and take their family p...

Laissez Les Bon Temps Rouler – Let the Good Times Roll

Feb 12, 2015

It’s Mardi Gras! Although I have never been to a Mardi Gras celebration I have been to New Orleans where Mardi Gras really never stops. My husband and I spent a week in NOLA soaking up the local color, eating some of the best southern fare and enjoying a whole lot of musical history (along wit...

Sensory Bottle Fun

Feb 5, 2015

  By now you have all found these sensory bottles on Pintrest, random Facebook posts or even in a family magazine. I was dying to try them out. Not only am I dying to try them out, I also promised my friend Amanda I would make these for a blog. So,here ya go Amanda! Here […]

The Insanity of Living With The Toddlerazzi

Jan 29, 2015

I found this Facebook post I wrote on November 15, 2012- just weeks before my twins turned two. Day in the life of a SAHM November 15, 2012 at 2:17pm Many people ask me (on a near daily basis) is it hard having twins? My reply is usually “depends on the day.” I thought I’d share […]

Pom-poms and Cardboard, Expensive Toys Are Overrated

Jan 22, 2015

My kids are totally obsessed with fuzzy pom-poms. You may have gathered that from myEaster post. They love to make crafts with them, count them, sort them, and now we are making games out of them. My kids do not like going outside in the winter- which I do not fuss about! So, we need to […]

Kids Just Wanna Have Fun!

Jan 15, 2015

If you were a child in the 1980’s your birthday party might look something like this: friends, cake, ice cream and the backyard. Or, if you were really lucky, you got a party at McDonald’s. If you are a child in the 2000’s your birthday party might look something like this: A high society ball. We [...

I’ll Show You Mine If You Show Me Yours with Bonus Craft

Jan 8, 2015

Simmer down now, this is a family show! I don’t know about you but I am filled with a great determination to get organized this year! (Maybe it is just coincidence that about 1.2 million other people have this same urge?). Now that my twins are 4 I feel like I am finally coming out […]

2014 WAS SO “WHATEVER”

Jan 1, 2015

  I’m not one to make a lot of resolutions for the new year. But I do like to look back and think about all the good things that happened in my year. 2014 has been a pretty great year for the Whatever Mom. I started this blog less than a year ago as a […]

3 Last Minute “Whatever” Christmas Gift Ideas

Dec 18, 2014

Only eight crazy nights left until Christmas! Whatever. I’m not worried. That’s a lie… Anyone else feel a slight panic attack coming on? I have been so behind this year thanks to the 5 weeks of sickness holding us hostage. I was down for three weeks in November, and my girls have been sick the [R...

DIY Shower Soothers Using 3 Ingredients

Dec 11, 2014

This weeks post is going to be short and sweet. My little girl picked up a terrible cold virus. It comes with a wicked cough and major sinus congestion. She woke me up at 3:00 a.m. standing by my bed shouting, “mom!! I can’t smell!!” Poor kid. Unfortunately, there aren’t many...

4 Gift Giving Traditions

Dec 4, 2014

Every family has their holiday traditions. Maybe there are certain special gifts we can look forward to each year, or special way to celebrate our holiday. Growing up my mom always let us open one gift on Christmas Eve. It was usually a pair of pajamas to wear to bed that night. My husband knew [...

7 Ways Being a Mom Has Made Me a Horrible Friend

Nov 20, 2014

Ok, I’m not a horrible friend. But, I am definitely not as good a friend as I used to be. Before motherhood I was the girl you’d call at 2 a.m. and sob about your broken heart. I was the first to remember your birthday and get everyone together for cake. I’d join you at the gym [&#...

10 Reasons Aunts Have it Easier Than Moms

Nov 12, 2014

Being an aunt is so awesome. I never feel pressure to dress my nieces and nephews perfectly, or feed them organic stuff. Everything I say seems so wise. I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve gotten angry or impatient. When they were little it was so easy picking up my little cherubs [R...

Charity Starts At Home- 7 Ways To Give Back With Little Ones In Tow

Nov 5, 2014

So Halloween is over and it’s nearly Christmas already. Oh wait. Did we forget about that little holiday in the middle? The one where we are thankful for our families and friends before donning our sweatpants and stuffing our faces with cheesecake. Right, Thanksgiving! Thanksgiving is one of my favo...

Grief In Her Own Words

Oct 30, 2014

As October begins to wind down with everyone’s focus on Halloween festivities, my mind drifts toward the child that won’t be celebrating with us this year. I miscarried our first child on October 27, 2007. Coincidentally October is also Infant Loss and Miscarriage Awareness Month. One in four women ...

THINGS I WON’T DO FOR MY KIDS

Oct 23, 2014

Welcome to Week 3 of the No Frills version of The Whatever Mom! Hope you are enjoying my personal insights into this parenting gig!   We had the luxury of going to dinner at two different restaurants this weekend. We are lucky if we eat as a family at a restaurant two times in the […]

Kids Who Tantrum in Public – A Parent Perspective

Oct 16, 2014

Last week, fellow blogger Discount Diva gave out medals to moms with children who throw tantrums. As a mom of two children with epic tantrums I am not looking for a medal, just simple understanding and space to be a parent. Let me take you through a recent experience and break down for you what [...

3 Fun Kid Friendly Decorating Ideas

Oct 9, 2014

October is here! We can officially get excited about pumpkins and Halloween! I LOVE decorating for Fall!!! (Can never have too many exclamation points when sharing my excitement for Fall!!!). Gone are the days I can display my intricately designed, hand crafted grown up tablescapes. The delicate ens...

7 Pop & Drop Freezer Meals to Celebrate CrOCTober

Oct 2, 2014

HAPPY CROCKTOBER Have I shared with all of you how much I love my crock pot? My love affair with slow cooking began a few months after my twins were born. It takes a lot of work to put a hot dinner on the table while adjusting to life with kids! Once I got over […]

3 Easy Steps to Feel Organized

Sep 25, 2014

Every week for nearly the last four years I have proclaimed, “THIS is the week I get organized!” I really mean it when I say this. But, the reality of taking care of the other humans in my home leaves me little time to organize like Martha (as in Stewart). I admit it is disappointing [&#...

10 Fun ABC Activities

Sep 18, 2014

  I had this fantasy that I was going to home school my children. It sounded like fun at the time, but then the reality of being out numbered by two feisty little divas quickly changed my mind. But, I did want to teach them some basics like letters and numbers. So I started on […]

3 FUN WAYS TO USE PAINT SWATCHES

Sep 11, 2014

Let me start this post with a confession: once the kids go back to school I kind of go on auto pilot with the whole educational crafting at home thing. I feel like I did my due diligence and picked just the right school for them with teachers who are way more patient…er um, qualified […]

How to Start Your Own City Swap

Sep 4, 2014

With summer winding down I took a look at our summer bucket list. It was fun counting up all the things we have checked off. What a busy summer it has been! It feels like we just made our list yesterday and I can’t believe how quickly this summer has passed! One special bucket list […]

Super Simple Parenting Hacks

Aug 28, 2014

The countdown is on for my girls to return to school! Although we don’t have a ton of supplies to purchase, we are in a whirl-wind to get our house organized and cleaned up from summer’s fantastic chaos. I really just want to spend their first day of school focused on them (while I enjoy […]

What a Luxury It Is To Be Anxious for 17 Years.

Aug 21, 2014

My anxiety about turning 39 began on October 30th, 1997. I know that was 17 years ago, but I vividly remember sitting at my desk in my dorm room studying for an exam. The phone rang. It was my mom. “I’m sorry sweetie but Aunt Christine passed away.” My memory goes blank after that. I don’t […]

Dear Lonely Mom, You Are Not Alone.

Aug 14, 2014

I had a different, fun little piece ready to share, but when I opened my Facebook page my news feed was full of posts about Robin Williams’ suicide. My heart broke. Not because Hollywood lost a great actor, but as humans we lost a great one– his kindness, compassion, wisdom and joy now gone fr...

Make Bath Time the Last Activity of The Day!

Aug 7, 2014

Hard to believe August is here already! Everyone seems to be gearing up for back-to-school and lining up their routines. I’m still enjoying the longer days of sunshine and the slower pace of summer. Some days seem longer than others, like the days when kinds are cranky and do not want to get into th...

Reclaiming My Passion for Painting

Jul 31, 2014

I walk into the Vine Van Gogh paint night so excited to spend time with other moms (and a glass of wine). It really doesn’t matter what we are painting, I am just happy to be out of the house and among other adults. In the last three years I’ve made due with stolen moments […]

What to Expect When You’re Expecting – Potty Training Edition

Jul 17, 2014

So you know that What to Expect when you’re Expecting series of parenting books? I’m about to add another volume to that called, “What to Expect When You’re Expecting- Potty Training Edition.”  Potty training has not been a magical 2 day experience for me. It hasn’t even been a difficult 2 mon...

The Whatever Mom Wants You To Join The Whatever Army!

Jul 10, 2014

We’ve all heard the term “Mommy Wars.” It just doesn’t sound right. Moms are supposed to be peaceful role models for their children. We teach our kids not to fight, to think of other people’s feelings, and to be kind to others. I have struggled the last few months to find jus...

Christmas in July My $150 Spending Plan

Jul 3, 2014

Here it is right smack in the middle of Summer and I am going to talk to you about Christmas. I know it’s 6 months away but as I mentioned last week, Christmas is one of my favorite holidays. It isn’t long after the smoke from the fireworks clears that my mind starts making Christmas [&#...

Red, White & Blue Holiday Crafts and a Frozen Treat

Jun 26, 2014

I really love the 4th of July! Next to Christmas, it is one of my favorite holidays.  I know Christmas is pretty awesome, but I really feel like the 4th is a spectacular holiday without all the pressure and stress of finding the right gift. And there are no hard and fast rules on how […]

Make Paper Pinwheels for Your Next Summer Party

Jun 19, 2014

It was such a gorgeous day today, the girls and I spent most of it outside. We played with the water table, ran around flying kites, kicked a ball and even enjoyed our lunch outside. Then someone said, “Let’s make a craft.” I didn’t feel like making a huge mess with paint and...

Family Savings Jar- Dimes for Disney

Jun 12, 2014

Most of my crafty ideas start with me rummaging through the house to find whatever items I already have on hand.  I found these awesome mason jars (which held our store bought pasta sauce) and knew I needed to use them for something! Disney jars it is! I think my girls are still a little […]

Introducing Phase 2

Jun 5, 2014

We interrupt this regularly scheduled crafty blog to focus a moment on Phase 2 of my frumpy to fabulous plan. Remember my post about how to spring clean your look? Well that was Phase 1 of my plan. I decided to add Phase 2, Healthy Eating and Exercise, after my daughter caught me getting out […...

Stay Strong Moms! There’s Hope for Picky Eaters.

May 29, 2014

During a play date a mother observed my preschooler eating salad. “You are giving me so much hope right now. You mean my kid might eat a salad one day?” Yes! I am here to bring you hope! My kids are just coming out of a hard core, year long cheese phase. They ate cheese, […]

Backyard Pirate Adventure

May 22, 2014

I had been trapped for hours in the back yard. Forced to swashbuckle against my will. Someone put a twig in my hand and made me sword fight before I was told to walk the plank. This is not a bad dream. This is my children’s obsession with all things Pirate. Yes, friends my girls […]

Make a Summer Bucket List!

May 15, 2014

Dare I say the winter that would never die has finally passed and we can FINALLY, FINALLY (no for real this time) enjoy some summer time activities? Woo hoo! For us, summer begins a flurry of travel plans, exciting adventures and new places to see.  I feel like our social calendar fills up so quickl...

How To Make An Income Without Leaving For Work

May 8, 2014

Having children is the most expensive venture I have ever made! Thankfully, there’s a pretty big emotional return on my financial investment. Unless you’ve married a Trump, you know the financial pinch having kids creates. I have always wanted to be a SAHM. I thought, “I’ll j...

Kid’s Art Storage

May 1, 2014

During my last visit home my mother handed me this haphazardly filled box of some of my old artwork and collectibles. Not everything fit and it was spilling over the sides of the box. I dropped most of its contents on the way to the car. I was excited to see mementos of my childhood […]

Spring Clean Your Look

Apr 24, 2014

Anyone else hear about this new fad called “spring cleaning?” It’s where you clean stuff simply because the season has changed?  It’s all the rage in my house right now. We are pulling apart closets and cleaning in corners we didn’t even know we had. It all started because I was tired of my ug...

A Funny Bunny Photo Booth

Apr 17, 2014

I wanted to do something really fun for the girls Easter pics this year. Short on time and money for a professional photographer, I decided to create my own funny bunny photo booth. But once I made the booth it was too cute to keep to ourselves. So, we invited a few friends for an […]

How to Build a Busy Binder

Apr 10, 2014

How often do you find awesome projects on Pintrest and think, “who has time for that?” Or, “I would never think of that!” That’s what inspired me to create these super simple busy binders! I used items I found at dollar stores. No need to use up my ink to print off a ton of […]

How Not to Host a Glow in the Dark Easter Egg Hunt

Apr 3, 2014

It’s my second blog in and I know what you’re thinking. This chick really digs the eggs. I was prepared to write a whole fluffy craft piece about how to host your own glow in the dark egg hunt. I realized it is more important to share what happened behind the scenes during party prep. […]

“Eggless” Easter Fun!

Mar 27, 2014

Hi! My name is Roxanne and I am the “Whatever Mom.” I am a stay at home mom with busy, unstoppable twin preschoolers.  I am excited to share with you this mess free, fun Easter egg activity. Last year I discovered the simple beauty of plastic Easter eggs and fuzzy pom-poms. With Easter right around ...