Cirque du Soleil’s Kurios Comes to Atlanta #Giveaway

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Cirque du Soleil has become an annual fixture in Atlanta. It’s by far our favorite circus, and with a new and creative show each year, I always look forward to seeing what new ways they have found to awe the audience. Just this past weekend, Mike and I went to opening night of Cirque du Soleil’s newest show – Kurios. It was fantasic and by far one of the most unique and family friendly Cirque du Soleil shows to date.

About Kurios:

Kurios takes you into the curio cabinet of a time traveling inventor. The audience is taken on a journey that defies time, space, and dimension as everything around you is transformed and your perspective is altered. Where your world is literally turned upside down and the impossible, becomes possible.

Kurios feels like it’s set in the 1800’s but in another world – if that makes any sense. It was most definitely…”Kurios”…in the best way possible. From the music to the set design to the costumes, everything about Kurios is whimsical, beautiful, and mesmerizing.

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Quite literally…every Kurios act was more awe-inspiring than the last. One of the first acts – the Russian Cradle Duo – featured a strongman turns into a human trapeze and flings a woman resembling a porcelain-faced doll in the air where she performs more and more intricate gravity-defying acrobatic tricks.

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Our favorite act of the night was the Acro Net act, which featured five performers on a jumping net. By assisting a main bouncer with their jumping force, they would get the main performer into the air – easily going 75+ feet or more into the air. Some bounces were as high as the rafter above. What is truly amazing is that the performers literally perform every second while in the air. It’s not just a jump – every moment is part of the performance. It was just breathtaking. I honestly felt like my heart was going to pound out of my chest.

Which begs the question Mike and I repeated to each other over and over throughout the night…how do the performers even practice these acts? Sometimes it’s easy to forget not only how immensely talented there circus performers are, but also the risks they take.

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Every circus has to have a clown and the Cirque du Soleil “clowns” or comedic performances never disappoint! Our favorite comedic performance of the night included a woman picked from the audience. She was invited on a date into the “home” of the performer. He then proceeded to play the part of his pet bird and pet cat. His mannerisms as a cat were spot on and had the audience laughing out loud!

As you can tell, Mike and I loved the show. I was only sorry my son Lucas didn’t get to go (he’s 8), because he would have loved it. If you have the chance to check out the show in any of the cities Kurios will visit, I highly recommend that you see the show. To learn more about Kurios, find out tour dates, and purchase tickets please visit www.cirquedusoleil.com.

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Our Favorite Fall TV Shows + $100 Amex #Giveaway

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It’s Fall and that means the beginning of all the things that I love. Cooler weather. Chunky sweaters and knit scarves. Turning leaves. Soup bubbling on the stove top. The holiday season. Oh, and of course…Fall TV. Today I want to share with you our favorite Fall shows!

Top Fall Shows To Watch

  1. The Blacklist
  2. Grey’s Anatomy
  3. How To Get Away With Murder
  4. Scandal
  5. Quantico
  6. The Affair
  7. The Walking Dead
  8. Homeland
  9. Modern Family
  10. American Horror Story: Hotel
  11. The Muppets

 

For a full listing of all Fall shows and their premiere dates, click HERE.



All of the above shows are scheduled to record on our XFINITY X1 system. Honestly, without our X1 DVR we wouldn’t be able to watch all of the shows we love. We have to watch many of our shows after they air when we have time (i.e. the weekend).

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The XFINITY X1 system has so many cool features too! Check them out below:

  • The Top 100 shows preloaded onto your system. This is the perfect way to find a new show to binge watch!
  • Access to XFINITY’s extensive On Demand library, refreshed daily with new episodes
  • Personalized recommendations on what to watch. This feature looks at the shows you already watch and makes “smart” recommendations based on your watching preferences. Pretty cool!
  • With Cloud DVR from X1, you can record up to five of your favorite shows while watching one live and even take your recorded shows with you on the go, so you can always stay up to date! This means you can watch while you are traveling, at the gym, in the car, waiting in line, etc. The Cloud DVR is our new favorite thing!
  •  What are your must-watch Fall TV shows? Tell me to enter the giveaway in the widget below!

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XFINITY partnered with bloggers such as me for their Fast Life program. As part of this program, I received compensation for my time. They did not tell me what to purchase or what to say about any product mentioned in these posts. XFINITY believes that consumers and bloggers are free to form their own opinions and share them in their own words. XFINITY’s policies align with WOMMA Ethics Code, FTC guidelines and social media engagement recommendations.

Tell Your TV What To Do with the New XFINITY Voice Remote #Giveaway

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Technology is simply amazing. I can remember watching The Jetsons as a kid and thinking no way will we ever be able to do any of those futuristic things. But now? We can FaceTime and carry thousands of songs in tiny devices and we can even speak to our TV. Just this past month, XFINITY introduced the new Voice Remote for the X1 Entertainment Operating System, which allows you to literally tell your TV what to do. What do I mean by that? My husband (a.k.a. Jolly Dad a.k.a. Mike) will show you!

As you can see, he’s super excited about all of the cool features of the new Voice Remote!

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Voice Remote Features:

  • Press the voice button then say whatever you’d like X1 to help you with. You can use it to change channels, find shows, get recommendations, launch apps and more.
  • You can search by actor, channel, sports team and much, much more – no special commands, just plain English. You can even ask it what you should watch or to show you more like your favorite shows!
  • With a backlit keyboard and aim-anywhere control, it has never been easier to navigate with ease, even in the dark.
  • The voice remote is another example of XFINITY’s commitment to accessibility for all. By giving the options to simply say, “Turn on Closed Captioning” or to use voice guidance, everyone can find his or her favorite shows and movies.

Plus, it has some really FUN features too! It recognizes hundreds of popular movie quotes! For example, if you tell your voice remote, “If you build it, he will come,” it will find the movie Field of Dreams. You can even find Frozen by singing along with some of the hit songs like “Let It Go”.  Do you speak minionese? Well, the boys at my house love The Minions and were super excited when they discovered that the Voice Remote understands minionese lol. So for example, if you say “banana” into the remote, the system pulls up food shows. Say “Popagonia” and you get romance movies. Super cute!

 

 


You can find more hacks and cool features of the Voice Remote here.

The Voice Remote is available to anyone with the X1 Entertainment Operating System from XFINITY. New customers will get the remote during their installation and existing ones can either pick one up at an XFINITY store or order online using the form here. To get yours shipped out today – it’s free, just pay S+H!

Enter to win a $100 Amex Gift Card via the Rafflecopter widget below!

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XFINITY partnered with bloggers such as me for their Fast Life program. As part of this program, I received compensation for my time. They did not tell me what to purchase or what to say about any product mentioned in these posts. XFINITY believes that consumers and bloggers are free to form their own opinions and share them in their own words. XFINITY’s policies align with WOMMA Ethics Code, FTC guidelines and social media engagement recommendations.

Father’s Day Gifts for Every Dad at Kmart

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I got lots of things from my dad. My nose. My eyes. My business savvy. And, among other things – my love for cooking. Growing up, both of my parents cooked, but my dad had a real love for food and ingredients. He still has this same passion for food today. He and I both love to cook from scratch as much as possible. He taught me that fresh ingredients are always best and that what we put into our bodies matters. So for Father’s Day or any day, the gift of food is always a welcome gift for my dad! I typically make my dad one of his favorite treats for Father’s Day. I’ve made him apple tarts and Tres Leches Cake and all sorts of treats to enjoy on his special day!

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My dad and me

One of our favorite family treats growing up was rice pudding which was always made from scratch. So this year, I decided to make my dad homemade rice pudding in a brand new Presto rice cooker from Kmart that he can keep and use in his own kitchen.

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If you have a foodie dad, how about making him a special treat and including a useful or fun kitchen gift to go along with it! For instance, how about making a pot of dad’s favorite chili and gifting it right in the cast iron pot you made it in? I love the Guy Fieri Dutch Oven  from Kmart! Or, bringing dad all the ingredients to make the perfect Margarita along with a Margarator Margarita & Slush Machine from Kmart?!

No matter what your dad likes – Kmart has a wonderful selection of Father’s Day gifts perfect for every dad. There’s something for the Trendy Dad, Outdoorsy Dad, Handy Dad, Active Dad, Tech Dad, Chef Dad and much more. Just check out their selection at Kmart.com/FathersDay!  Oh and make sure to watch the hysterical video below!

Get great deals at Kmart on apparel, shoes and everything else your dad will love. Learn more at Kmart.com/FathersDay!

In honor of Father’s Day, we have a giveaway for you today! Enter via the Rafflecopter widget below. Good luck!

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12 Days of Christmas Activities – Day 1 Advent Calendar #12JollyDays

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To me, the holidays is all about spending time with family and loved ones. There’s something special about this time of year and we really love to focus on one another as much as possible. Over the years, we have created our own holiday traditions and we look forward to them every year. So for the next twelve days, I will be sharing some of our family’s favorite holiday activities that you can do with your own family and hopefully integrate into your own traditions. Personal Creations will be joining in on the fun by providing a $500 gift card! Each day you will have the opportunity to enter!

I thought I’d begin with our favorite Christmas activity – the Advent Calendar. We have been doing one for several years and it is such a wonderful way to count down the days until Christmas. To be honest, we do several Advent Calendars. We have a small toy one for Lucas, a Nativity Book Advent (read a short story every night) and our favorite – a Family Activity Advent Calendar.

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It sits in the kitchen and every morning Lucas runs downstairs and opens the day’s activity.

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Each day is filled with a special activity for the whole family to enjoy. Some of the activities are big – like going to see A Christmas Carol at the theater – and some of the activities are small – like singing Christmas carols while sipping on a mug hot cocoa.

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Big or small. We look forward to each day.

 

Get the Holiday Look Featured Above

Santa Advent Figurine Calendar by Personal Creations. This personalized Advent Calendar is both fun and elegant and looks beautiful in the home. It’s made of wood and has numbered drawers that can be filled with a small chocolate or toy or rolled up paper with an activity. 

Family Holiday Rules Canvas by Personal Creations. Filled with good cheer, these “rules” set the stage for a holiday filled with laughter and love. Durable, museum-grade art canvas is stretched over a solid wood frame. Personalize with any name up to 12 characters.

Make sure to visit PersonalCreations.com for lots of great Christmas and holiday decor and gift ideas! Save 20% off your entire order when you enter PCSM20 at checkout!

$500 Holiday Giveaway!

Enter via the giveaway widget below for a chance to win a $500 PersonalCreations.com Gift Card! Must live in the US and be 18 + up to enter.

$500 Personal Creations Gift Card Giveaway

Radio Control Heli Beast Giveaway

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Lucas loves all things RC and was super excited when we received the Heli Beast from Silverlit to test out. It’s basically a remote control helicopter that walks and really flies. The boys (Lucas and Mike) had a lot of fun testing it out as you can see from the video below!

The one area that they had trouble with was the landing. As you can see in the video that part did not go as smoothly. This could be an issue with the Heli Beast or it could be a user issue LOL. We haven’t quite figured that out yet, but they are having lots of fun practicing! Plus, even though it’s gone through some rough landings – our Heli Beast is still going strong so it’s definitely a durable toy. One thing that I love is that it comes with a charger so you don’t go through a ton of batteries.

About the Heli Beast from Silverlit:

Includes beast gear for realistic walking action. Launch your Heli with the touch of a button on the remote. Special Propeller system with auto stabilization technology. Precision speed control for a smooth flying experience. Easy to recharge through transmitter. $39.99. Available at Hammacher now and Kohls.com in the fall.

Giveaway!

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(VIDEO) Little Scholar Tablet for Kids Review & #Giveaway

I swear babies come out of the womb knowing how to use smartphones and tablets these days. Amelia has already shown interest in our iPhones and is perfectly adept at “swiping” and going through apps. She is 18 months old. Totally blows me away. The thing is that if she is going to use a smartphone or a tablet of any kind, it needs to be educational and it needs to be appropriate content. This is true for both her and Lucas (7 years old). I don’t want to worry about her viewing inappropriate videos or content.

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That’s why I love the new Little Scholar Tablet for kids – it literally comes LOADED with 150+ apps, videos, music, books, and more…all appropriate and ready for your little ones right out of the box. You don’t have to spend hours setting it up and you don’t have to constantly worry that your kids will stumble onto something they shouldn’t be watching and you don’t even need an internet connection to use. However, this is a fully functional tablet so you can add apps if you want to and of course – connect to the internet too.

Watch the video below to hear about the features we love!

About the Little Scholar Tablet:

Little Scholar tablet from SchoolZone (leading educational kids publisher) is jam packed with 150 educational apps(including videos, songs and e-books), valued at nearly $400 worth of FREE content. Little Scholar provides its users with lessons based on all of the “core curriculum” subjects for preschoolers, kindergartners, and first graders, including math, reading, spelling, logic, creativity, and geography. Parents can even use an App management tool to choose the apps, music, and e-books that are active on Little Scholar, so they can tailor the content to fit the learning needs of their children. Little Scholar was made for kids 3-7 and features an 8-inch screen and runs a Google Android™ 4.2.2 operating system.

For additional information, visit littlescholartab.com.

LITTLE SCHOLAR TABLET GIVEAWAY!

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Oprah’s The Life You Want Weekend Tour #OlayXLifeYouWant #Atlanta #Giveaway

For the first time ever, Oprah is hosting an eight-city arena tour to empower women across the country to live the life they want.

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“I want us all to fulfill our greatest potential. To find our calling and summon the courage to live it.” –Oprah Winfrey

About the Tour:

Friday, Oprah takes the stage in a profound, moving and intimate one-woman show. She brings her story and vision to life, creating a transformative journey for every person in the audience.

Saturday, Oprah unleashes that energy, leading a day-long gathering of thousands, with hand-picked “life trailblazers,” each of whom brings a unique power to connect, dig deep and open hearts and minds. From teaching to conversation to one-on-one connection, to music, laughter and breathtaking moments, this will be an unforgettable life experience.

Tour Cities & Dates:

  • Atlanta, GA: September 5-6
  • Auburn Hills, MI: September 12-13
  • Washington D.C.: September 19-20
  • Newark, NJ: September 26-27
  • Houston, TX: October 17-18
  • Miami, FL: October 24-25
  • Seattle, WA: November 7-8
  • San Jose, CA: November 14-15

As you can see, the first stop on the tour is right here in Atlanta, GA at the Phillips Arena on September 5th and 6th. I’m so excited to announce that I will be attending on behalf of Olay!

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I’m even more excited to announce that I am giving away 5 pairs of tickets to O-Town – an interactive brand expo taking place outside of the event arena. (Please note that these tickets are for the Atlanta O-Town only – these do not get you inside the arena for the show. Five winners will each receive two (2) tickets to O-Town. )

How To Enter: Comment below with why you would like to attend.

Rules: Must be 18+up and a U.S. resident to win. Giveaway ends on September 2nd at 11:59PM ET. Please note that these tickets are for the Atlanta O-Town only – these do not get you inside the arena for the show. Five winners will each receive two (2) tickets to O-Town.

For more information, please visit Oprah.com/tour.

NEW Baby Wipes Designs by Pampers! #Giveaway

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Last October, I visited Cincinnati for the Pampers Baby Board Blogger Day at their headquarters. One of the fun things we got to do was to select three of the nine new packaging designs for Pampers Baby Wipes and guess what? They are now available in stores! It’s pretty cool to see the designs that we picked!

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But even though the packaging may be different, the wipes themselves are still the same wipes we love!

Pampers Baby Wipes Features

  • A Thick & Lofty Wipe – Specially designed microfibers provide lofty thickness to enable reliable and easy cleaning.
  • SoftGrip Texture™ – The soft grip texture signals a gentle yet thorough clean.
  • Great Absorbency – The wipe material, in combination with our mild lotion, absorbs efficiently and helps restore skin’s natural pH balance.
  • Soft and Gentle – The wipe delivers softness that is suitable for even the most sensitive of babies’ skin.

Why do I love Pampers Baby Wipes? Because they feel like fabric, which makes them super soft and comfy for babies. Plus, they get the job done easily and quickly. They are the only wipes we buy (for both Lucas when he was a baby and for Amelia now).

GIVEAWAY

Thanks to Pampers, we have an amazing giveaway today! We want you to make the most out of the end of summer by giving one lucky Jolly Mom reader a summer outing basket packed with goodies to assist in making the perfect family memories this season. Prize includes diaper changing pad, picnic blanket, Polaroid camera to capture memories and the most essential items for tiny tots: Pampers diapers and the newly-designed packs of Pampers wipes, which provide little ones with our best gentle clean. Enter via the Rafflecopter widget below. Good luck!

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NEW by GODIVA! Trufflelata™ and Soft Serve

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There’s nothing that says summer to me more than indulging in a yummy frozen treat. It’s one of our favorite things to do as a family during the warmer months. That’s why I was so excited when I heard about GODIVA’s newest tasty offerings – Trufflelata™ and Soft Serve! We headed out to our local GODIVA last week to sample both of these and OMG. YUM.

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The event was wonderful! The store was like walking into a chocolate heaven. They had every kind of chocolate treat you could think of. First we got to try some chocolate covered strawberries as everyone arrived. We got to meet and speak with Rachael – the District Manager over the Atlanta Market. She spoke to us about the various things we were going to sample, and then on came the first treat, Trufflelata™.

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The way the Trufflelata™ is made is actually very unique. It looks like a milkshake, but it’s not. There isn’t any milk in a Trufflelata™. It is actually made with truffles, chocolate powder, some have syrups added, and then water and ice. Trufflelata™ comes in six flavors: Chocolate Lava Cake, Salted Caramel, Strawberry Crème, Hazelnut Crunch, Milk Chocolate and Oreo® Cookie. The biggest problem? Choosing one!

After sampling all of them we “took a break” by making our own truffle lollipop, which we gave to Lucas. He loved it. Then after our break they brought out the soft serve treat.

Jolly Dad making Lucas a truffle treat

Jolly Dad making Lucas a truffle treat

 

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Leave it to GODIVA to take soft serve and elevate it several notches! Their new Soft Serve is omade from premium and authentic Belgian chocolate. It makes eating soft serve a whole new experience! GODIVA Soft Serve is available in three different flavors: Dark Chocolate, White Chocolate Vanilla Bean and Swirl, and can be enjoyed in a variety of premium Belgian waffle cones, each one dipped in either milk or dark chocolate.

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I can’t think of a more delicious way to make memories this summer than by enjoying the new GODIVA Trufflelata™ and Soft Serve! For additional information and to find a store near you, visit GODIVA online.

GIVEAWAY

GODIVA wants YOU and your family to enjoy one of their new frozen treats so they are giving away a $25.00 GODIVA Gift Card to one lucky Jolly Mom reader! Just leave a comment below letting me know: What was your most memorable fling? Giveaway is open to U.S. entrants who are 18+ up and ends on 8/13 at 11:59pm ET. See Godiva Sweepstakes Official Rules.

 

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of GODIVA.