Have Movie Night in the Comfort of your Own Home

Okay so maybe you are not a movie buff and just having an adult only night works best for you to play cards, read together or do something but for my relationship, having a movie night together while the kids are asleep is a fabulous way to connect as adults. All day and most evenings we are parents, taking care of the children and making their needs come first.  When 8 o’clock rolls around and all is silent we turn to our On-Demand movie selections to get a peek at current movies. Depending upon your location you may look at Time Warner Cable for your on-demand movie selections or movie previews. It’s great to have a selection of on-demand movies so that when the kids are asleep, the parents can still have a “movie night” in the comfort of their own home.

One way my boyfriend and I stay connected is really as simple as sitting down on the couch at the end of the night, chit chatting about our day, then turning our minds off “life mode” to watch movie selections, movie trailers and reviews of the current on-demand titles available. Occasionally we get stuck on two movies, not being able to decide so we turn to looking at movie reviews or the movie trailers again and again until we can come to a decision on that perfect-for-us film. Having friends who have Time Warner Cable, I have seen that many enjoy the selections of movies for on-demand services, you should check out timewarnercableoffers.com to see what they have to offer you in your particular area.

Right now the hottest movies are out for your viewing pleasure, such as The Heat and We’re The Millers, two hilarious films worthy of an adult movie night on the couch with popcorn or a drink in hand. Time Warner Cable has a wide selection of movies at your fingertips and a variety of cable packages for your viewing pleasure. In addition to cable television Time Warner Cable also offers you internet. Package up your necessary products in a reasonably priced way after reviewing their product packaging options on site.

Whatever you choose for your cable channels, make sure to take advantage of the on-demand features because that is what makes movie night the best night in our home – whether alone or with the children.

Top Five Ways to Stop Being an Alien to your Kids

At a loss as to how to understand that new kid that appears to be that same little person you gave birth to on the exterior but internally has become some little alien creature with a language you have yet to master? It’s all too easy to blink and find that our kids have become miniature adults in tween and teen bodies with word usage that may have you shaking your head more often than not. Here are some tried and true methods that may assist you in keeping communication open with your kids through the tween and teen years;

Mother Daughter Lunch on Mothers DayBring Yourself To Their Level

Kids these days watch shows different than the Full House and Looney Toons we grew up watching, they are now torn between enjoying their parents old school shows or falling in line with their peers watching Victorious, Josh and Drake among other shows that frequent the television these days. The best way to get in tune with your kids is to watch what they watch, engage them during the commercials, find out what it is about these shows that makes them enjoy such drama. Best bet is to discourage such shows, but these shows will really help you to bring yourself down to the level of their peers and in turn help you be able to communicate at their level.  Heck, watch the latest in tween and teen shows while your kids are away from home to really get a hang for talking that tween and teen slang, you will impress them by being able to refrain from looking baffled at the words that spew out of their mouths. If you can bring yourself to simply understand, even if you do not agree, with what your kids are experiencing in a way that makes them feel as if you truly care, then they will be more apt to come to you for the small things, the big things and the even larger things that happen in their life.

Encourage Family Dinner at the Table Together

It has been proven that if a family can meet at the table for a meal once per day and engage in conversation together during meal time, that the family bond as a whole is more concrete with little feelings of being left out or misunderstood. Dinner time is usually the best time of day as kids have extra curricular activities, parents have to work and maybe the younger kids have activities or play dates to tend to. Dinner time is a great way to wind down over a good meal and great conversation with your family as a whole. This form of conversation over a meal together as a family teaches the lesson of listening, speaking and hearing others rather than tossing off what they are saying because you may be busy washing dishes while they are speaking to you. Each person has the rest of the families undivided attention and engages properly, respectfully and politely to each person in response to the topic they are discussing. Family Dinner at a table together really helps to glue a family unit together.

HeartFeltBooks CoverEncourage a Journal

There are multiple reasons why a kid should have a journal but the most important ones are that it can allow them to get out any negative that happened that day which will allow them to move on from that negative. The other benefit of having a journal is that the kids are able to write about their positive experiences and have them saved for future reference when they feel their life is just crap. As a parent, you need to really set up ground rules with the journal. Allow your child to have a private journal, one in which you will not touch or snoop through behind their back, but rather let them know beforehand that if their behavior is shooting red flags to you then you may need to read that journal for some insight as to what their emotional well being may be at that time. It’s easy to set ground rules that teach your kid they have space, but also that they are truly the kid, not the adult so their privacy is slightly limited. Having a journal may allow your kid to talk to you easier because they will not be so full of information, anger or happiness that they rambled off in a way that is hard to keep up with. A journal may help a kid slow down to focus on what their real issue is at the current time and in turn be able to express that to you in a manner that you are able to understand and lend advice about.

Remember That What your Kid Is Going Through is Personal To Them

You recall being that kid who knew 100% that their Mom or Dad just didn’t “get them”, right? That is your kid. Your kids now feel that you do not understand them, you have never lived a day like they are living and you are just some alien from another world that had this peachy clean time growing up. You were never bullied, you never faced challenges, life was just always easy for you as a kid. Remember, you have to get back down to the level of your kid’s ages and remember how you felt about your parents just not getting you. That is how your kids feel. If you can take your kids personal experiences and compare it to something that you went through at a younger age, but compare it in a way that makes sense to your kid, then you are able to find a way to communicate efficiently with your kids. By now, you should have a pretty good judgement of what example will compare appropriately for your child. Be brutally honest, if you went through some majorly bad bullying as a kid then you need to express that to your kid if they are suffering from not fitting in or being bullied. You see, when your kid can look into your eyes and see the feelings behind what you are sharing with them, they will trust in you more and eventually it will dawn on them that you do get it.

PicsArt_1366994408138Just Be Honest and Real, Keep Your Home a Safe House so to Speak

All that your kid wants is for you to be real and honest with them. While your kids are not going to know for sure if you are telling them everything about a situation or giving advice based on personal experience for real, they will know that you are being honest with them. Kids just know these things.  Do not make any topic off limits in your home, your kids are suppose to feel as if that home is their safe house. A safe place where they can mention, discuss and communicate anything going on in their world, their minds and with their peers. Never should a kid feel guarded in their own home, that is a setup for lack of communication as well as rebellious behavior. Sure you  may not want your kids to know every single mistake you made, such as getting wasted at a party and making horrible decisions, but if you tell a story or experience in an honest and age appropriate way, your kids will learn to respect you more as well as open up to you  more. They will realize you are a human and a real person, not just their “parent” or an alien from another world.

Keeping communication open with your kids through out all of the hormone changes, life changes and situations with friends is not going to be an easy process. Keeping communication open between you and your kids is going to take a lot of hard work, it’s going to take time each day to listen to them. Even if you are dead tired and would much rather curl into bed for an early nights sleep, do not do it. Take that time to really engage with your kid so that they can see that no matter how tired their parents are, that they are the top priority for their parents. That alone will boost a kids self esteem and encourage open communication in a household.

FlipKey’s “Flippin’ Awesome Vacation Giveaway” Details

About FlipKey
With over 150,000 vacation rentals around world, FlipKey makes it easy for you to enjoy the space, privacy and amenities of home wherever you go. Whether traveling for a few days, a week, or even longer, rental homes provide exceptional value as compared to hotels.

FlipKey’s comprehensive inventory of vacation rental properties, extensive verification processes, and easy-to-use website make it simple and safe to find the perfect vacation rental. Travelers can search FlipKey’s property listings and connect directly with rental property managers and owners for free. Travelers can also review property details including photos, rates and guest reviews to identify the best accommodations for their next vacation.
Our dedication to providing a high-quality, valuable service has won widespread customer approval and media attention. FlipKey has been named a “Top Vacation Rental Site” by Travel + Leisure Magazine in 2008 and 2009 and was ranked one of the top 10 travel websites for 2010 by the New York Post. Additionally, FlipKey has been mentioned across a wide variety of top tier media outlets including the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, USA Today, MSNBC, SmartMoney, and theLA Times.

 Enter for a chance to win a 7-night stay in your choice of 3 incredible vacation rentals

Here are the choices for who ever wins, the accommodations are for the winner and up to 10 friends!

Villa Les Rizieres, Bali

• 2 swimming pools
• Private tennis court
• Private cinema
• Car and driver

Within driving distance of the “Best Golf Course in Asia,” this Balinese villa puts luxury and convenience at your fingertips. The house is surrounded by a tropical walking garden, and the grounds come complete with a tennis court and both indoor and outdoor pools.

Punto de Vista, Costa Rica

• Breakfast included daily
• Rooftop cinema
• Butler and staff
• Secluded beach
• Swimming pool

Seeing is believing when it comes to the incredible panoramic views at Punto de Vista. This rainforest mansion overlooks a gorgeous golden-sand beach, and the local flora and fauna come right up to your door. Ten bedrooms provide enough space for you and your friends.

Villa Ferraia, Tuscany

• Infinity pool
• 3 stone soaking tubs
• Private observatory
• Professional-grade kitchen
• Sauna

This incredible estate in the beautiful Tuscan countryside can accommodate all your guests in comfortable suites that overlook impeccably landscaped grounds. Enjoy a private pool and roman baths, as well as a restaurant-grade kitchen where you can practice your favorite Italian dishes.

How to Enter

The sweepstakes is completely free to enter. Simply go to FlipKey’s Facebook page and follow the prompts.

Check out photos of all three prizes and then choose your favorite.
The winner will be awarded their choice of the three prize packages!

This sweepstakes is only open from November 15th 2011 – January 10th 2012

Get Extra Chances to Win

These prizes are awesome and they’re even better when you share them with your friends. Invite your friends on Facebook and you’ll get an extra entry for each friend who accepts your invitation and enters the contest as well.

For more information, check out the sweepstakes page or you can also visit the Official Rules page.

*I am not personally affiliated with this sweepstakes, I am simply sharing the information with you.

CLOSED Facial Exercises with Facercise Giveaway

I received a copy of Facercise which is a facial exercise DVD set. I know that my sister is hoping to get her hands on this and test it out so I probably will hand it down to her soon for her birthday which is tomorrow!

What is the first thing you notice about a person? For me, it’s their face. This is a great way to get your face ready for your next big appearance or special event. I think this would be great for wedding preparation as well. What bride wouldn’t want their face being lifted with natural exercises just in time for those lovely wedding pictures?

I am a person who believes that you work hard at losing weight, no diet pills no fasting, simply working hard to get the results you want. Facercise is a program that I can stand behind and recommend you check out for yourself.

Information about Facercise and the creator

Carole Maggio, considered “the world’s foremost authority on facial exercises” has devised a series of synergistic exercises which she has successfully taught to hundreds of thousands of clients world wide. In 1995, as an answer to thousands of questions regarding her techniques, she authored the best selling book, FACERCISE®. This book continues to be a top selling item in bookstores worldwide. She has also produced two DVDs and two CDs to demonstrate her FACERCISE® techniques.

Ms. Maggio has a legion of supporters among the medical and dental professionals worldwide. She has had numerous testimonials from many plastic surgeons and cosmetic dentists who support her belief that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Her credo is to address the causes of facial aging, not to just treat the symptoms.

Ms. Maggio long ago discovered that, through proper exercises, one can strengthen and develop the 57 face and neck muscles so that the face can actually be restructured to achieve an improved, younger look. Just as a body builder can develop particular muscles in his or her body, a particular facial feature can be developed and accentuated by performing a specific facial exercise. In just a short period of time there will be a noticeable difference in the contour and tone of the face.

Visit the official Facercise Website today to learn more and see if this is something you would like to test drive.


One person will win a copy of Facercise

Enter below by completing any or all of the entry options, first option is to simply leave a comment as it is with all of my giveaways.

Winner chosen using Random.org

Winner announced live on site and emailed directly.

Winner has 72 hours to get back to me or else another person will be randomly chosen.

Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on August 6th

If you have won this on another blog you can not win it here.

Open to US

HOW TO ENTER {complete any or all of the following}:

  • Leave a comment on this blog post. {1 entry}
  • Visit Facercise website and have a look around. Come back here and tell me something that interest you in this product. {2 entries} Leave TWO comments.
  • Subscribe to Happily Blended’s Newsletter. {2 entries} Leave TWO comments.
  • Join this site with Google Friend Connect (right hand sidebar) publicly. {2 entries} Leave TWO comments stating your GFC username.
  • Subscribe to Happily Blended Blog updates via email or RSS. {2 entries} Leave TWO comments.
  • Leave a comment on a non giveaway blog post here at Happily Blended. {2 entries} Leave TWO comments telling me which blog post you commented on, one comment on one other blog post is acceptable daily.
  • Visit my other blog Moms Vacation Land and leave a comment on a blog post there. {2 entries} Leave TWO comments telling me which blog post you commented on, one comment on one other blog post is acceptable daily.
  • Follow @brandyellen on Twitter. { 1 entry} Leave a comment below telling me your Twitter username after you follow me.
  • Tweet daily about this blog post (copy & paste the following):
    Give yourself a natural facelift with Facercise #giveaway @happilyblended hosted by @brandyellen here: http://bit.ly/q3HW8t #giveaway
    {1 entry per tweet} Tweet every FOUR hours only. You can use Hootsuite to schedule tweets and leave a link to each tweet below.
  • Blog about this giveaway linking to both http://happilyblended.com and the direct giveaway link: http://bit.ly/q3HW8t as well as http://facercise.com {3 entries} Leave THREE comments below telling me you blogged and where to find the blog post.
  • Add Happily Blended’s button or HappilyBlended.com  link to your blog roll (code for blog button found on sidebar). {2 entries} Leave TWO comments below.

Disclosure: I received this product for free. All opinions are that of my own.

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