November 24, 2014

New Toys for BIG HERO 6 & Disney Infinity 2.0 #BigHero6Event #DisneyInfinity #BigHero6 #MeetBaymax


As we go into the holiday season, kids everywhere are getting their shopping wish lists ready for parents. This year on the hot toys list will be anything related to Disney Big Hero 6. Did you see the movie yet? I'm sure even parents are adding BIG HERO 6 items to their shopping list.

BIG HERO 6 Toys, Books, Clothing and More

Note: Thanks to Disney and ABC TV, who invited me on this all expense paid trip to Los Angeles for the Big Hero 6 Event and ABC TV Event. While I will share about the different events and activities during this trip, any personal views expressed are always 100% my own. This post contains affiliate links.

Not sure where to find all the cool BIG HERO 6 items? Aren't you glad I went on my Big Hero 6 press trip because I have the scoop about the BIG HERO 6 toys and products!

BIG HERO 6 Toys, Books, Clothing and More

Since I received some of the BIG HERO 6 toys and products during my trip, I can share that everything is very cool and your family will enjoy them. From plush to books to video games, there's something for all members of your family.

During my trip I also got a first look at the new toys and products from Disney Consumer Products and Disney Infinity. Here's a quick preview of what you can look forward to.

Disney Consumer Products "BIG HERO 6" products include

Bandai Armor-Up Baymax Action Figure and Rocket Fist

Bandai Armor-Up Baymax Action Figure $19.99 - Transform Baymax from his 6” white nursebot form to an 8” crime-fighting hero with the Armor-Up Baymax. 20 body armor pieces construct a powered-up Baymax, growing two inches in height while preparing for battle in his red armored suit.

Bandai Baymax Rocket Fist $19.99 - Put the power of Baymax in your hands with the Baymax Rocket Fist. Easy reloading and fun launching up to 10 feet in distance with soft material on the fist makes it safe and fun to play.

Go Go Tomago and Honey Lemon Dolls

Go Go Tomago and Honey Lemon 11” Dolls $16.95 each - These fully poseable character dolls feature their accessories from the film, including GoGo Tomago’s spinning ''mag-lev discs'' and high-speed armor and Honey Lemon’s messenger bag.


Hiro and Tadashi Big Hero 6 Books and Bed Set

Disney Press Hiro and Tadashi (Big Hero 6) $16.99 - This beautifully-illustrated picture book focuses on tech-wiz Hiro and his older brother, Tadashi, as well as their unique styles and tastes in building robots! Readers will get a feel for their fun, compelling relationship, their mutual love for technology, and get the characters behind the super team, Big Hero 6!

Big Hero 6 Prodigy Bed Set $19.88-199.99 - After a long day of adventures and defeating bad guys, cozy up in this five-piece bedroom set that features Hiro Hamada and Baymax graphics. Available Retailers: Kohl’s, Walmart and Walmart.com

Big Hero 6 Graphic Tees

Big Hero 6 Graphic Tees - $12.95-14.95 each - Channel your inner hero with these colorful Big Hero 6 cotton tees that feature all of your favorite characters from the film. Available at The Children’s Place

You can find these and more Disney Consumer Products available at mass retailers like Amazon BIG HERO 6 Store, The Disney Store and www.DisneyStore.com



Disney Infinity 2.0 BIG HERO 6 figures

Disney Infinity "BIG HERO 6" products include

This month a special Disney-themed Toy Box Starter Pack and line of Disney Originals figures launched. This unique Starter Pack allows fans to begin their Disney Infinity (2.0 Edition) experience using existing Disney figures and Power Discs, new Disney Originals characters, and the latest additions from the recently launched Disney Infinity: Marvel Super Heroes game in the enhanced Toy Box mode.

Disney Infinity Hiro and Baymax Disney Originals figures

Disney Infinity also introduced Hiro and Baymax Disney Originals figures to the game, along with Donald Duck, Tinker Bell, Maleficent and Aladdin.

Disney Infinity Power Discs

POWER DISCS

New set of circular and hexagonal Power Discs will be available for Disney Infinity: Marvel Super Heroes. Circular discs will add costumes, Area of Effect attacks and team ups. Hexagonal power discs will add new weapons, vehicles and sky and terrain customizations. There will be 42 Disney power discs and 40 Marvel-themed discs.

Disney Infinity Marvel Super Heroes Toy Box

TOY BOX

An all-new Toy Box mode makes it easier for players to create and share their one-of-a-kind levels and mini-games with family and friends. In addition, all characters and power discs from last year’s release of Disney Infinity will be compatible with the Disney Infinity: Marvel Super Heroes Toy Box.

Disney Infinity Marvel Super Heroes figures

The Avengers’ Iron Man, Black Widow, Thor, Captain America, Hulk and Hawkeye will debut when game launch, along with additional Play Sets and characters from other popular Marvel and Disney franchises.




Disney Infinity: Marvel Super Heroes will be available for the PlayStation®4 and PlayStation®3 computer entertainment systems, Xbox One, the all-in-one games and entertainment system and Xbox 360 games and entertainment system from Microsoft, the WiiU™ system from Nintendo, PC and iOS tablets and smart phones.

Disney Infinity (2.0 Edition) is rated E-10+ by the ESRB.

For additional information, visit www.disney.com/infinity



Recipe: Celebrate Friendsgiving with Netflix Cucumber Rolls with Veggie(Tales) Cream Cheese #StreamTeam


This month it's all about Thanksgiving and connections with friends and family that we're thankful for. Like many of you, I plan on spending time with friends and family during this holiday season.

To celebrate these wonderful connections, this month I'm sharing the Netflix theme of Friendsgiving, a popular take on Thanksgiving when friends come together to celebrate good food and great company.

Netflix Friendsgiving Cucumber Rolls with Veggie(Tales) Cream Cheese

Note: I'm part of Netflix #StreamTeam sponsored program and will share monthly information and news about their service. However any personal views expressed are always 100% my own.

As part of my Friendsgiving theme, I plan on taking these Cucumber Rolls with Veggie(Tales) Cream Cheese as a different and special side snacks to enjoy with friends. Click here to see how to make your own.

Speaking of friends, the all-new Netflix original “VeggieTales in the House,” will start streaming this Wednesday, Nov. 26, 2014. To celebrate these cucumber roll-ups stuffed with veggie cream cheese version has sun-dried tomatoes for Bob the Tomato, a celery stalk for Frankencelery and baby carrots for Laura Carrot.

Other Friendsgiving themed movies and TV shows you can find on Netflix include

Netflix Friendsgiving themed Movies and TV Shows

1. Bob and Larry: VeggieTales in the House
2. Bert and Ernie: Sesame Street: Elmo and Friends
3. Bo and Dezzy: Bo on the Go!
4. Justin and Olive: Justin Time
5. Tod and Copper: The Fox and the Hound 2
6. Clifford and Elizabeth: Clifford

Netflix Friendsgiving themed Movies and TV Shows

1. Phineas and Ferb
2. Shaggy and Scooby: Scooby-Doo! Mystery Incorporated
3. Vada and Thomas: My Girl
4. Martin and Chris: Wild Kratts
5. Finn and Jake: Adventure Time
6. Mario and Luigi: The Super Mario Bros. Super Show!
7. Charlotte and Wilbur: Charlotte's Web

Whether you're planning a Friendsgiving feast or sticking to your traditional Thanksgiving routine, show your kids why friends are worth being thankful for with this month's picks.

To learn more about Netflix, visit - www.netflix.com


Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Pizza Van 10 City Tour to Collect Holiday Toys and Share Free Pizza #TurtlesPizzaVan #TMNT


TMNT fan get ready to be on the lookout for the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Pizza Van doing a 10-city tour in celebration of the home entertainment debut of the blockbuster film Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles available on Digital HD November 25th, 2014 and arrives on Blu-ray™, Blu-ray 3D™ and DVD December 16th, 2014.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Pizza Van 10 City Tour

The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Pizza Van will be distributing FREE pizza and also collecting new, unwrapped toys for local Boys & Girls Clubs.

Once you spot the TMNT Pizza Van in your area, drop off a new toy, grab a slice and customize it with wacky, Turtle-inspired toppings and have a chance to score a Turtle eye mask and other fun prizes!

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Pizza Van 10 City Tour

Check the 10-city tour list to see if the van will be in your area

Tuesday, November 25 — Miami
Friday, November 28 — Atlanta
Sunday, December 3 — Nashville
Friday, December 5 — Chicago
Saturday, December 7 — Indianapolis
Monday, December 9 — Cincinnati
Wednesday, December 10 — Cleveland
Friday, December 12 — Philadelphia
Sunday, December 14 — Boston
Tuesday, December 16 — New York City

For complete details of the tour stops, visit - www.TurtlesPizzaVan.com
On Twitter, follow the Turtles Pizza Van - www.Twitter.com/TurtlesPizzaVan


Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Movie on Blu-ray Combo

In this eye-popping reimagining of the legendary heroes in a half shell, New York is under attack by the sinister Shredder, but fearless leader Leonardo, brilliant and brainy Donatello, rough and rebellious Raphael and wild and crazy Michelangelo take to the streets to defend their home with the help of intrepid reporter April O’Neil (Megan Fox) and their brilliant sensei, Splinter.

The film also stars Will Arnett, Whoopi Goldberg, and William Fichtner and features Johnny Knoxville as the voice of Leonardo and Tony Shalhoub as the voice of Splinter.


To learn more about the movie, visit - www.teenagemutantninjaturtlesmovie.com

On Facebook: www.facebook.com/TMNT
On Twitter - www.twitter.com/TMNTmovie



DreamWorksTV Video with Penguins of Madagascar, Benedict Cumberbatch, John Malkovich & More #PenguinsMovie


Meet the most entertainingly mysterious birds in the global espionage game as they begin to reveal the untold story of how four ordinary penguins became the Penguins of Madagascar:

DreamWorksTV Video with Penguins of Madagascar



Catch exclusive interviews with Rico, Skipper, Kawolski, Private and Classified, stars of the upcoming DreamWorks Animation film Penguins of Madagascar on DreamWorksTV, a family-friendly YouTube channel featuring original live-action and animated shorts along with sneak peeks and trailers to the latest DreamWorks Animations films.

And of course DreamWorksTV wants fans to meet the cast behind the characters –



Watch as voice actors Benedict Cumberbatch, John Malkovich and more, show off their pre-recording warmups.
    For those who like conspiracy theories, click here to see what’s stirring up the around the penguins cast
      For more Penguins of Madagascar, catch them on the DreamWorksTV channel and in theaters November 26, 2014!


      P'kolino Mess Eaters Children's Storage Line & 12 Holiday Deals


      I first saw a few of P'kolino (pee-ko-lee-no) products earlier this year during Toy Fair NY and was so impressed with them. P'kolino offers both stylish and functional products that both kids and parents will enjoy using and be happy about. One of my favorite items are P'kolino Mess Eaters Storage line

      P'kolino Mess Eaters Kids Storage Line

      The Mess Eaters children’s storage line is designed around a set of playfully-stylish characters that help bring order to cluttered playrooms, bedrooms, desks, closets, and more. These friendly personalities help children store and organizing: toys, stuffed animals, clothes, books, and all sorts of playthings.

      J.B. Schneider Co-founder of P’kolino explains,
      “I think we all know how challenging it can be to get children to clean up. Our Mess Eaters’ engaging and playful personalities simplify this challenge by making it fun for children; and that makes parents very happy. In designing the look for this line we were very cognizant of finding the right balance between playfulness, to keep it really fun for children, and style, to bring joy to parents.”

      P'kolino Mess Eaters Kids Storage Line

      There are 36 Mess Eaters (and growing) such as: Toy Trunks, Shelf Bins, Under-the-bed Storage, Hanging Organizers, Travel Cases, the iconic Book Buggee and more, which a price range from $9.99 to $34.99.

      While the Mess Eaters children’s storage line is one of my favorites, P'kolino has lots more to offer families including

      P'kolino Kids Toys Line
      P'kolino Kids Arts Line
      P'kolino Kids Furnishings Line


      Right now P'kolino is having their Big Holiday Savings with 12 Deals of Christmas, where you can save on popular products with a new deal every 2 days.

      P'kolino is improving play at home with playfully-stylish and functionally-smart designed products. P'kolino designs all of its own products in its Florida Studio.

      To learn more about P'kolino, visit - www.pkolino.com


      November 21, 2014

      Interviewing Fergie on Motherhood and Music #ABCTVEvent #Fergie #BigHero6Event #AMAs


      So my trip to L.A wasn't all Disney Animation and ABCTV show tours. As if that's not cool enough. No there was more coolness happening when the group were invited to do Q&A with music artist and new mom Fergie!

      Interview Fergie on Motherhood, Music and American Music Awards 2014

      Note: Thanks to Disney and ABC TV, who invited me on this all expense paid trip to Los Angeles for the Big Hero 6 Event and ABC TV Event. While I will share about the different events and activities during this trip, any personal views expressed are always 100% my own.

      So can I just say that Fergie was simply so sweet. She came into the room and greeted all the "mommy bloggers" with a warm welcome and smile. Great way to start off an interview!


      Since Fergie is a new mom, I had to ask, does she makes up songs to sing to her son, and how he likes it?

      Fergie: We've made up so many ridiculous songs. It's so funny that we kinda of remind ourselves of "Best in Show" the movie. In this movie this couple sings about their dog, they do a whole album about their dogs. My husband and I are the corniest. I can sing it for you

      *starts singing the song*

      That's just one of them (songs) from our album that might come out one day. Also, "Turn Down for What" by Lil John. My son does this little dance. Its so cute. It's something that he just love so I play it for him. He's just the cutest thing.


      Other group questions Fergie answer included:

      About her other life and career passions

      Fergie: While music is my first passion, another passion of is fashion. I read WWD everyday. The get the paper edition and that's my little private moment. Just for "me" time, because I'm a true believer in making sure you have just a little bit of that time that's just for you.

      What's great about reading that, is it's not that long in the morning but it extends into my inspiration for the day and into whatever I'm doing. So whether it means I'm having a design meeting for shoes, or planning my next video or performing it really comes into play that way. But its a really fun thing just for "me" as well.

      How she balances motherhood and career

      Fergie: My son and I have our dates. My little mommy time is very important to me. I take it very seriously. If for some reason that time is cut, it makes me sad. I didn't know that will affect as as much.

      As for juggling everything. iCal! I am a scheduler. Josh and I have a joint calendar color. I have my calendar color, he has his calendar color and now I'm starting to get even more colors. For my work that's going to be a color, and then there's me and Axle time but then there's me and Axl AND daddy time. And then there's me and daddy time. And those are all important in different ways.

      I really have to break it down and be very linear with it so that everyone and everything gets balanced evenly. It's hard. Nothing is going to be perfect but you try and do your best.


       photo fergie_zps601f3d89.jpg

      Before ending the interview Fergie shared that she's excited to be performing at the AMA this year. It's a big deal for her coming back and hitting the stage. And also doing New Years Rocking Eve that same weekend. While it will be a busy week she's looking forward to it.

       photo fergieama15_zps460f5b5e.jpg

      dick clark productions announced that Fergie, Lorde and One Direction will join the growing list of superstars set to perform at the 2014 American Music Awards. Fergie will take to the stage to make her worldwide television debut performing her first single, since 2006, “L.A. LOVE (la la),” from her upcoming album.

      Also scheduled to appear at the world’s biggest fan-voted award show are previously announced 5 Seconds of Summer, Charli XCX, Mary J. Blige, Sam Smith and the evening’s host, Pitbull. The 2014 American Music Awards will broadcast live from the NOKIA Theatre L.A. LIVE on SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 23 (8:00-11:00 p.m., ET/PT) on ABC.

      This year, fans can use the WATCH ABC app for desktop and mobile devices to gain unprecedented access to one of music's biggest nights. The “AMAs Backstage Live” on the WATCH ABC app will feature feeds from exclusive live cameras strategically positioned throughout the theater, including the audience and press room. WATCH ABC can be accessed from ABC.com or via the WATCH ABC app, which is free on select iOS and Android devices via the App Store and Google Play.

       photo Fergienyre15_zps25b2eb89.jpg

      Charli XCX, One Direction and Meghan Trainor join the biggest bi-coastal celebration of the year with performances on New Year’s Eve from the Billboard Hollywood Party. One Direction will headline with four performances throughout the night. Fergie returns for the ninth year to host the Billboard Hollywood Party and will treat the audience to a special performance. Jenny McCarthy returns for the fourth time live from Times Square.

      “Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest 2015” will air on WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 31 beginning at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT on ABC Television Network.


      Giveaway: 5 Tips to Survive Holiday Travel with Kids & Safety 1st Advance 65 Air+ Convertible Car Seat


      Soon it will be time to start the holiday travel rush. According to AAA 2013 report last year 94.5 million people were on the roads, train tracks or in the skies during the holiday season. That’s a lot of people! Then add your own kids into the mix of congestion and for some it can mean holiday headaches.

      How to Survive the Holidays with Kids from Safety 1st

      To help make your life easier, Safety 1st consumer safety experts have shared these 5 tips on “How to Survive the Holiday with Kids”.
      1. Avoid peak travel days –Try not to fly or drive the days immediately before and after the actual holiday. Those are the busiest travel days. However, if you fly or take a train you might save money by traveling on the actual holiday, the roads are less congested too.

      2. Prepare your child for the trip – Holiday parties can be overwhelming with sensory overload. Especially for young children it’s good to talk about the upcoming trip days even weeks in advance. This will help him or her get excited about the journey. Show photos of family members or friends your child has not met yet, this way the new face might be a little familiar on arrival.

      3. “Are we there yet?” - To help avoid that dreaded phrase an hour into your six hour trip reserve a bag just for the kids, include books, toys, diapers a change of clothes and snacks. Pre-load a tablet or smartphone with kid friendly apps or games. If you are driving keep all necessary items such as wipes, hand sanitizer or tissues easy to reach in a second – there are times you may not want to be digging through the bottom of a bag for such items. The Safety 1st Car Door Sanitation Station is a great solution.

      4. Car Seats – If you are flying check to make sure your car seat is FAA certified. If it’s not clearly labeled contact the manufacture. For parents with older children the Safety 1st BoostAPack can double as a kid survival kit, it’s FAA certified, and will fit in the plane overhead bin.


        If you are driving make sure your car seat is installed correctly. If it’s been awhile since you visited a car seat check, it’s recommended to check your seat with a Certified Child Safety Technician in advance of your trip. www.Safercar.gov is a great resource.

      5. Prepare the guest room – If your child will be sleeping in a Play Yard during the trip, use that for bed or nap time the entire week before. This will help him or her get used to a new sleep environment. Also if your infant or child sleeps better in a dark room or tends to wake up early with the morning light, bring garbage bags or dark fabric to tape over windows.
      To learn more about Safety 1st, visit - www.safety1st.djgusa.com
      On Facebook - www.facebook.com/safety1st
      On Twitter - www.twitter.com/safety_1st



      ***** PLEASE NOTE: Unfortunately, the Advance 70 got discontinued so the prize for this giveaway has been replaced with the Advance SE 65 Air+ *****


      Safety 1st Advance SE 65 Air + Convertible Car Seat

      Whether you're taking a train, plane or automobile, Safety 1st wants to help you keep your child protected. So they've offered their Advance 65 Air+ Convertible Car Seat for one lucky The Mommy Factor reader to win!

      Safety 1st introduces Air Protect + technology: Positively the safest choice in full body protection.

      The Advance 65 Air+ Convertible Car Seat features Air Protect + to keep children from 5-65 pounds safer in the car. Air Protect + combines the advanced protection of the Air Protect® cushion system with patented GCell HX™ foam designed with hexagonal shapes for superior protection around the torso. TOGETHER they provide full body side impact protection.

      In addition to Air Protect +, the Advance 65 Air + uses a steel-reinforced metal frame for extra stability and includes a 4-position recline for an optimal fit to your vehicle. We’ve also included color-coded belt paths and installation labels to help you install it quickly and correctly, which means less time getting it into your car and more time to enjoy the ride.

      Features included:
      • 2 modes of use: Rear-facing infant and baby car seat 5-40 pounds; Forward-facing toddler car seat 22-65 pounds
      • Featuring Air Protect +: Air Protect® advanced cushion system protects your child’s head, where it’s needed most. GCell HX™ patented foam with hexagonal shapes inside the seat provides superior body protection. TOGETHER they provide full body side impact protection
      • Easy to identify color-coded belt paths and installation labels
      • 10-position headrest grows with your child
      • No re-thread harness
      • LATCH equipped
      • Integrated cup holder
      • Meets or exceeds Federal and ASTM Safety Standards

      ENTER TO WIN THIS GIVEAWAY!
      • (1) Advance 65 Air+ Convertible Car Seat
      WAYS TO ENTER:

      Entries must be made on or before 11:59 p.m. November 30, 2014.

      a Rafflecopter giveaway


      Terms and Conditions

      Winner will be selected by random.org. Giveaway entry must be completed before extra entries will count. Winner will be contacted by email and must respond within 24 hours or a new winner will be selected. Open to residents of the U.S. with a valid street address.


      November 20, 2014

      Disney Animated Short Feast Interview with Director & Producer #BigHero6Event #Feast #BigHero6


      I've been sharing tons of behind the scene information about Disney's BIG HERO 6 film, that's now playing in theaters. If you've seen the film then you'll immediately recognize Winston, the adorable Boston terrier who has a large appetite for yummy food.


      Disney Animated Short Feast

      Note: Thanks to Disney and ABC TV, who invited me on this all expense paid trip to Los Angeles for the Big Hero 6 Event and ABC TV Event. While I will share about the different events and activities during this trip, any personal views expressed are always 100% my own.

      If you haven't seen BIG HERO 6 yet, what are you waiting on?! Get your tickets ASAP and head to the theater early to enjoy this FEAST the animated short showing before the movie starts. Trust me you'll enjoy it. I sure did when I saw it during the BIG HERO 6 premiere screening.


      Disney Animated Short Feast

      While FEAST is only a few minutes long, the story telling and visuals will really touch your heart. To learn more about what went into making the short, I joined in the group interview with FEAST Director Patrick Osborne and Producer Kristina Reed.


      Disney Animated Short Feast

      When asked about the idea behind making FEAST Patrick, shared

      Patrick Osborne: I started out with a video of one second meals happening every day. There's something really cool about the context you get in your life of seeing these kind of meals. It tells a big story, and on top of that, the design and color of food and plates on the table would be something very cool to animate. And a dog underneath the table kind of following the life of the family, through the meal seemed like a really cool place to start.

      Disney Animated Short Feast

      About his choice of dog breed

      Patrick Osborne: We were going for a simple look. We needed a two toned dog that could fit under the table. Also so far in animated films, Boston Terriers hadn't been used. I wanted a dog breed that couldn't be confused or compared to other dogs in prior Disney movies.

      Disney Animated Short Feast

      Choosing which foods to animate and include

      Kristina Reed: We wanted food that were iconic and easily recognizable. So we chose foods like pizza, hamburgers, etc.

      I say they did a great job not only choosing foods but also telling a yummy story. Check out the trailer below to get a sneak peek of what FEAST is about.




      "FEAST", a new short from first-time director Patrick Osborne (head of animation, “Paperman”), Producer Kristina Reed (produced 2012’s Oscar®-winning short “Paperman) and Walt Disney Animation Studios, is the story of one man’s love life as seen through the eyes of his best friend and dog, Winston, and revealed bite by bite through the meals they share.

      For more information, visit the Facebook page www.facebook.com/DisneyAnimation
      On Twitter: www.twitter.com/DisneyAnimation



      Giveaway: 5 Benefits of Pretend Play and Great Pretenders Kids Superhero Costume


      Do you encourage your child to "dress up"? Like all children my son enjoys dressing up as a fun playtime activity. This year for Halloween, he had not one, or two but three different costumes to wear. I still can't figure out how did so many wardrobe changes but it's OK as long as he's having fun.

      Great Pretenders Boys and Girls Superhero Costumes

      But by playing and dressing up my son is not only having fun but also building skills in many essential developmental areas. Children learn by imagining and doing so the process of pretend dress-up play is vital to a child’s development.

      According to licensed child psychologist Dr. Laurie Zelinger, “It fosters the imaginative processes, and allows for play without rules or script. Dress up allows for experimentation, role play and fantasy.“

      Dress Up Play also has some major benefits including:

      1. Social and Emotional Skills - Dress up allows for experimenting with the social and emotional roles of life. Through cooperative play, children learn societal rules such as how to take turns, share responsibility, and creatively problem-solve. Character play means that the child is "walking in someone else's shoes” and it encourages teamwork along with an interest in peers. The child also learns to negotiate which helps teach the important moral development skill of empathy. Since children see the world from their own point of view, cooperative play helps them understand the feelings of others.


      2. Language Skills - When children engage in pretend play, you will hear words and phrases you never thought they knew. Pretend play requires children to invent and tell stories and since almost all children narrate their pretend play experiences, they train their minds to transform ideas into words. Children usually mimic words and ideas from parents, teachers, daycare or what they hear on TV. This repetition builds vocabulary and helps kids visualize what they say, especially when adults offer feedback to help kids better understand the words they use. This also helps with grammar – they may not know the rules but they are training themselves to speak like adults. This also helps make the connection between spoken and written language — a skill that will later help them to read.


      3. Self-Control - Young kids typically have little self-control. During pretend play, children have to take a role and play within those boundaries, especially when other kids are involved. Studies show that children control their impulses significantly better during pretend play than at other times. Did you ever wonder why parents often make up a game to get their children to eat their vegetables or finish chores? Transforming an unappealing task into a make-believe game is a popular trick among clever parents and educators.


      4. Problem Solving Skills - Pretend play also provides your child with a variety of problems to solve. Whether it’s the logistics of sharing toys or a pretend problem the children are escaping from, the child calls upon important cognitive thinking skills that he or she will use in every aspect of his or her life, now and forever. Role playing games lead children to face situations that far exceed kids' real-life experiences. Children work out confusing, scary, or new life issues. Through these role plays, children become more comfortable and prepared for life events in a safe way. Children often use pretend play to work out more personal challenging life events too, whether it is coping with an illness in the family, the absence of a parent or divorce, or a house fire. Although kids may not always act logically during tough pretend dilemmas, the very process of problem solving becomes habitual. By practicing problem solving in an artificial environment, kids are better prepared to think of creative solutions to their own real-life problems


      5. Self-esteem By giving your child complete control in their pretend world and accepting them as a silly character, you are enhancing their self-esteem. While they use their own initiative to develop story lines, their creative imagination to expand stories and their own personality to choose a character they enjoy, you are enhancing their self-esteem by allowing them complete power in the world & enjoying it with them. Take for example superheroes. Considering the thrill children get out of pretending to be a grown-up, it's no wonder that they're also crazy about mimicking the most powerful version of adults: superheroes. Pretending to be Batman or Wonder Woman allows a toddler to feel brave and invincible, which helps them develop self-confidence. Similarly, all that running and leaping keeps them active and builds strength, balance, and coordination.


      Great Pretenders Kids Costumes

      Ready for your child to enjoy some dress up fun? Then learn more about Great Pretenders and then enter the giveaway for one of their kids costumes!

      As one of the oldest dress up companies in North America, and the only domestic costume manufacturer, celebrating over 25 years and 25 awards, the Great Pretenders team continues to excel in designing creative products that are size flexible, reversible, comfortable, and provide great value to customers. All of Great Pretenders products are fully tested to ensure compliance with all North American standards.

      To learn more, visit - www.greatpretenders.ca/us/
      On Facebook - www.facebook.com/GrtPretenders
      On Twitter - www.twitter.com/grtpretenders


      ENTER TO WIN THIS GIVEAWAY!
      • (1) Great Pretenders Superhero Costume (Choice of Boy or Girl)
      WAYS TO ENTER:

      Entries must be made on or before 11:59 p.m. November 28, 2014.

      a Rafflecopter giveaway


      Terms and Conditions

      Winner will be selected by random.org. Giveaway entry must be completed before extra entries will count. Winner will be contacted by email and must respond within 24 hours or a new winner will be selected. Open to residents of the U.S. with a valid street address.



      November 19, 2014

      My Set Tour for black-ish ABC Show #ABCTVEvent #blackishABC #BigHero6Event


      Last week I posted about the black-ish Kenya Barris and kids cast interview, which was so fun. I hope you enjoyed reading it and are getting ready for tonight's episode.

       photo blackishset1_zps12a733ae.jpg

      Note: Thanks to Disney and ABC TV, who invited me on this all expense paid trip to Los Angeles for the Big Hero 6 Event and ABC TV Event. While I will share about the different events and activities during this trip, any personal views expressed are always 100% my own.

      This week I want to share about my tour of the black-ish set with Maxine Shepard, Production Designer for the show, to learn what goes into getting the set TV ready. Yes another fun activity while on my Disney/ ABCTV L.A. Trip!

       photo blackishset2_zps680b1fe3.jpg
       photo blackishset3_zps46cf2460.jpg

      The tour itself was amazing because the set is built like an actually house. Like you literally walk through a front door and into the foyer of the home. From there you can branch off to.....

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      The living room had wonderful photographs of the "Johnson" family. Which helped you feel like they really lived here

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      The dining area was all set for a family meal or to entertain guests

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      And even the laundry room looked ready for me to load clothing for a wash and dry.

      And that's just one area of the first floor! As if that's not impressive enough, there's a 2nd area with the family bedrooms. Each room was decorated to match the personality of the shows characters

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      Bedroom for the Twins, Diane and Jack (Miles Brown, Marsai Martin)

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      Bedroom for Zoey (Yara Shahidi)

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      Bedroom for Andre Jr (Marcus Scribner)

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      Master bedroom and sitting area for Andre "Dre" Johnson (Anthony Anderson) and Rainbow Johnson (Tracee Ellis Ross) which was jaw dropping.

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      There was a full walk in closet with walls for Andre's shoes and hats. I had fun taking a selfie to capture the moment.

      Let me just remind you that this is where FILMING happens. Real actual camera and crew move around in these areas. Can't tell right?

      I do have to share that the set has really wide spaces from wall to wall and an open roof area to let the camera crew move around and film the actors during scenes.

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      But overall the place is so well decorated that I had to ask Maxine Shepard how she did it?! Maxine shared that she scouts a lot of places to find items to decorate the set. She also takes into account the actors themselves when decorating. She open to feedback of what they like or don't like that's she added to the set.

      While Maxine is the Production Designer, she has a great team of people who support her to get the sets built and decorated in time for filming. Sometimes they only have a matter of weeks to get a set together.

      After touring the set (and wanting NOT to leave), I have to say it's truly amazing what team work can do.

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      (photo credit: MARSAI MARTIN, JENIFER LEWIS: ABC/Kelsey McNeal)

      Tonight there's a new BLACK-ISH episode -
      "Oedipal Triangle"- when Dre's mother, Ruby (guest star Jenifer Lewis), comes for a visit, and she smothers her pork chops with gravy, Dre with love, and would like to flat out smother Bow, who feels the same way about her. Dre tries to find a way to get the two most important women in his life to get along, on "black-ish," WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 19 (9:31pm-10:00 p.m., ET) on the ABC Television Network.

      As you watch the episode make sure to take some time to enjoy the set background. As you can see it's filled with lots of details and a lot went into making it look as wonderful as it does on your TV screen.

      To learn more about the show, visit - www.abc.go.com/shows/blackish
      On Facebook - www.facebook.com/BlackishABC
      On Twitter - www.twitter.com/Black_ishABC


       
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