On the Set Disney Channel’s Hit Show Liv & Maddie

When I was the same age as my children I didn’t know the name of the actors playing on the shows I watched. In all honestly I don’t even know the names of the actors acting on the shows I now watch as an adult. Dove Cameron is a name I hear often because both of my kids love watching Liv & Maddie. And we’re all quite impressed with how she jumps from one scene to another acting as two different characters. I had the opportunity about two months ago to sit down on the set of Liv & Maddie and interview the cast (Dove Cameron, Joey Bragg, Tenzing Norgay Trainor, Kali Rocha, and Benjamin King). They were all so very kind and you can tell that they all work so well together.

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Just in case you don’t know the premise of the show:Liv, a popular television star whose show has just finished its run, and Maddie, an outstanding student and school basketball star whose popularity is on the rise until Liv makes a return to their high school. And their parents work at the school they go to, you know just to add a little more complication.

While sitting there someone asked if Dov ever gets confused and she said No, not usually and the rest of the cast agreed. They actually said that as a group everyone else gets more confused on which character she is supposed to be playing than she is. Which I can totally relate. To them they see the same person, while she has in her mind this is the character I’m playing right now. It’s like seeing a twin but forgetting which one it is. Yep, I’ve made that mistake. She said that originally she wasn’t supposed to play a twin, Disney just said after 8 months from doing the pilot, see you Monday you’re playing twins. She was worried that she was going to be fired the next day. But she pulled it off and now they are in their third season.

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Another question someone asked was what has been your favorite moment on set? Do you have any?

Dove : Yeah, honestly and I think that everybody like in the world is so tired of hearing actors say this because everybody’s like “every day is a favorite.” I can’t even think of a favorite moment because there’s so many. And while that’s actually true because we really like each other and we function like a real family. Like, I’ll come to Kali and Ben for parenting advice and we fight all the time.

Benjamin : Oh yeah.

Dove : I always win and stuff. But you know, but we really do have fun every single day. I think the first moment that came to my mind was when we got picked up to be a full series and they gathered us all.

It was, because we only initially got ordered for 6 episodes in Season One. And they gathered us all in the twins room and they were like, “Hey, we have an announcement,” and our Director played it off like we were gonna have a really exciting Guest Star. He kept being like, “Yeah, the Rock, the Rock.” And we were like, “The Rock is gonna Guest Star!” And then we got picked up for a full Series.

Joey : It was like, “Oh not the Rock?”

Dove : No… I just think that’s really fulfilling as an actor. We were all sobbing, we were all sobbing.

Kali : Well it has been a long journey, it has.

Joey : That’s what’s so crazy is that it’s been… This is the 3rd Season, like we are right now where most Disney Shows reach their peak and are finished and are wrapping it up and they’re getting ready to start another Disney Show or to move on past Disney.

But it doesn’t feel like that. We still feel new.

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You know, I feel like they have a few seasons left. They have great chemistry on and off screen and they laugh a lot together. We were laughing during the entire interview.

You’ll Love the Walt Disney Animated Short Films Collection

From Walt Disney Animation Studios comes the Shorts Film Collection, an extraordinary new collection of award-winning and beloved short films featuring Disney’s Frozen Fever, starring Anna, Elsa, Olaf, Sven and Kristoff, and the Oscar®-nominated Lorenzo. Now available on Digital HD/Disney Movies Anywhere and on Blu-ray™ . Enjoy this must-own collection with all-new extras including an inside look at the Disney Animation shorts, featuring introductions and interviews with the acclaimed filmmakers themselves. 

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I love the cute shorts that come out before and after certain movies. I think all of these amazing Walt Disney Animated Short Films were introduced before each film but I’m not 100 percent sure. I will say that this short film collection is full of really amazing shorts. From Spring Fever to Rapunzel’s Tangled Ever After. The Short Films Collection includes contemporary shorts starring classic characters, such as the groundbreaking 2013 Mickey Mouse cartoon, Get A Horse! And the holiday treat Prep & Landing: Operation: Secret Santa, as well as celebrated Oscar winners Paperman (2012) and Feast (2014). Enjoy them together for the first time in this must-own collection with all-new extras including an inside look at the Disney Animation shorts, featuring introductions and interviews with the acclaimed filmmakers themselves. Here is a list of the shorts including the filmmaker introducing it. You know, I think I’ve interviewed almost everyone on this amazing list.

Frozen Fever (2015) – Chris Buck, Jennifer Lee, Peter Del Vecho, Aimee Scribner

Feast (2014) – Academy Award® Winner, Patrick Osborne, Kristina Reed

Get A Horse! (2013) – Academy Award® Nominated, Dorothy McKim, Eric Goldberg, Adam Green

Paperman (2012) – Academy Award® Winner, Kristina Reed, John Kahrs

Tangled Ever After (2012) – Nathan Greno, Aimee Scribner, Mark Kennedy

The Ballad of Nessie (2011) – Kevin Deters, Stevie Wermers-Skelton, Dorothy McKim

Tick Tock Tale (2010) – Dean Wellins

Prep & Landing: Operation Secret Santa (2010) – Kevin Deters, Stevie Wermers-Skelton, Dorothy McKim

How to Hook Up Your Home Theater (2007) – Kevin Deters, Stevie Wermers-Skelton, Ian Gooding

The Little Matchgirl (2006) – Academy Award® Nominated, Dave Bossert, Tom MacDougall

Lorenzo (2004) – Academy Award® Nominated, Mike Gabriel

John Henry (2000) – Mark Henn

You could ask me is there anyway I could pick a favorite one and the answer is no. I loved Paperman and Feast. I loved all of them. Be sure to get this feature from Disney so you can enjoy these shorts over and over again.

Crazy Cute Minion Costumes at Costume Express

**This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links
In the words of a wise Minion, “I love ordering things online because when they arrive, it’s like a present from me to me.” Well said, Minion. Well said. This is precisely why I’m ordering our Halloween costumes this year from Costume Express. Not only are they made from quality materials, they are also super fun and well-priced. And their selection is incredible.
Have a kiddo who is adamant about being Olaf the Snowman from Frozen and another child who demands to be Minion Dave? No problem. You’ll find both online at Costume Express.
And even though Halloween is still a few months away, it’s actually a great time to get those Halloween costumes because Costume Express is giving you $10 off on orders of $50 or more with code CXSAVE10 now through August 23rd.

 

$10 off when you spend $50 use code: CXSAVE10 at Costume Express

 

Take advantage of this great savings and check “Get Halloween Costumes” off your to-do list!
Here are a few ridiculously cute Minion costumes available at Costume Express:

Minions Movie: Stuart Toddler Costume

Minions Movie: Minion Bob Child Costume


Minions Movie: Minion Costume Set For Girls

How To Save Money On-line

In the last decade, e-shopping has become one of the fastest growing trends all around the globe. To be able to keep up with this fast-moving world, you need to act smart everywhere you go online. Moms, who take care of their children day by day, not always have some time to go out shopping, so shopping online can become a nice way to get all essentials. And you know what – you can do all that much cheaper!

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So today you are going to learn how to shop much cheaper on the internet without any additional time spending! Use these three super easy ways to learn how to do all that without spending too much, and become a grand master of e-shopping instantly! It will definitely let you enjoy your savings in your wallet and will also let you enjoy your free time because it is super fast and super fun to shop online!

Use Coupons

Online coupons are super great and super easy to use. All you need to do is to find the right website that is full of the best online deals and use it! By shopping with coupons, you can save money on absolutely everything: from clothing, food, to different services, etc. You can even get special diaper coupons too! Apart from that, there are a huge number of famous brands that offer discounts if you shop with their coupons. For instance: Target, Kohl’s, Neiman Marcus, also other brand names that include everything from clothing brands to amusement parks. Moreover, believe it or not but with many different online offers and coupons for Target you can save up to 70% off everything you can find there. So look for the best coupons to use for and forget about spending too much!

Wait For Bargains

If you are patient enough, then wait for the best deals and shop after the holidays or other big celebrations. Actually, when it comes to online shopping, timing is often everything, and that is particularly the case in the run-up to Christmas, for instance. Better shop much before Christmas to avoid higher prices a week or two before it. Also, you can definitely shop after the holiday, but then you need to hide these gifts somewhere.

You can also try to predict discount and bargain deals with previous marketing calendars because it’s a good way to guess when you can nab discounts from big retailers. So take a better notice from now on then e-stores tend to lower their prices and catch the best time to shop.

Compare Prices

By simply comparing the same brand prices in at least two different stores you can save money in two ways. First, you can see with your own eyes how cheaper that items are in one store. And second, you can report that price to the competing company and get it cheaper!

A third, alternative way, can be a little bit different. Sometimes some brands operate their own online stores and also have another mini-store for their products within department stores’ sites. Check a price on the brand’s own site and see if a sale or discount coupons are available. If there is none of it, check the price of the branded item on a department store’s site. Companies can actually see if you can find that discount code and see if it is on sale. So start comparing!

Science for 3 Year Olds? Absolutely!

I’m super excited to be working with KinderCare over the next month. They have amazing resources for parents and they strongly believe what I believe. Little kids are sponges that absorb everything. So we should show them the world. Today we’re talking science for 3 year olds!!

Can 3 year olds really begin to understand scientific concepts like states of matter, force, and motion?

“Absolutely,” says Meg Davis, manager of curriculum development for Knowledge Universe. “Children are young scientists. They learn about the world around them through their senses.” This natural curiosity is the basis for KinderCare’s new early science education program, to be launched this summer.

Called Spectacular Science, the two-week program presents basic science concepts in ways three-year-olds can engage with and understand.

“The key is to provide children with plenty of hands-on opportunities to explore science in a playful way.” – Meg Davis, Manager of Curriculum Development for Knowledge Universe

For example, while learning about states of matter (solids, liquids, and gases), our children will pretend to be balloons filled with air that float up into the sky…and then fall back to the ground. That kind of physicality helps bring complex concepts to life for young children.

Can’t wait to nurture your own kids scientific curiosity? Bring a little bit of Spectacular Science home with these three ideas inspired by KinderCare’s new curriculum.

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1. Science in Creative Expression: Shadow Art

• Scientific Concepts:

o Light and Shadows

• Materials Needed:

o Sidewalk chalk

Pick a sunny day to head outdoors with your sidewalk chalk, find a hard, flat surface, and search for shadows to trace. Encourage your child to identify a shadow and trace its outline with the chalk. Create your own shadows and trace each other’s outlines.

Ask open-ended questions: What does a shadow look like? What shape is it? How is a shadow made?

Extra Credit: Later, go outdoors to see how far the shadow moved!

2. Science in Motion: Freeze Tag

• Scientific Concepts:

o Liquids and Solids

Physical movement and acting out ideas and concepts helps children understand them more clearly, and this well-known child’s game incorporates a science lesson too: Freeze Tag. (Freeze Tag works best with a few friends.)

Explain the simple rules: One child is It and tries to tag the other children. If a child is tagged, the child “freezes” in a fun (or funny) position. If another child tags the “frozen” child, he or she becomes “unfrozen” and can begin running again. After several minutes, ask another child to be It.

During breaks, ask: What else freezes?…That’s right, water. When does water freeze? What is water like when it unfreezes?…What is another word for ‘unfreeze’?

3. Science in Everyday Conversation:

· Scientific Concepts:

o Critical Thinking

o Hypothesizing

o Science Vocabulary

Science learning at any age involves curiosity, exploration, and discovery. Families can support science learning in everyday conversations by asking “how” and “what” questions that prompt children to think critically and explain their reasoning.

Ask questions like, “What would happen if… of How do you know that…? Then sharpen children’s skills by inviting them to test their ideas. For example, if you are exploring what sinks of floats ask, “Will the rubber duckie float? Let’s try it…”

You can find more amazing activities like this one at Adventure Ahead: www.adventureahead.kindercare.com

How WA Dairy Farms Make a Difference

This is a sponsored post by WA Dairy Council and all opinions are my own. Visit www.akeyingredient.com to find out all about the WA Dairy farms.

A few weeks ago I shared with you how WA Dairy Farms like the Werkhoven Dairy farm treat their cows really well. By treating the cows better the cows produce better dairy. The cows produce a lot more than just milk they also produce manure, energy and compost.

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Well the farmers do a lot of the work but it comes from how cows make good.

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These farmers right here are dedicated to making good while raising a future farmer. In fact both of them grew up on the farm too, the Werkhoven farm has been family run for a while. In addition to taking care of the cows they help create fertilizer for crops and vineyards. From Pinot to Riesling and Cabernet Sauvignon, some of Washington’s prized wines are made possible by the rich nutrients found in dairy cow compost. I drink a lot of Washington’s Wines. IMG_3533

They also create electricity that powers farms and homes using an anaerobic digester. I didn’t get a picture of it, it’s not something most people would ever want to see but you need to know what it does and the fact that these farmers do this is amazing. They are using science to make the world better. So consider this….what goes in, must come out, which for dairy cows, is manure. The manure, along with inedible human food scraps, enters the anaerobic digester, which acts like a giant stomach. The digester processes the waste, releasing natural methane gas. Instead of escaping into the atmosphere, the methane gas is captured and used to power an electrical generator. That electricity can either power the farm or be sold to local utilities to power nearby homes.

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This powers homes in WA! I was blown away to know this. I thought all manure was good for was making fertilizer, which WA Dairy farmers also do. The Werkhoven farm uses the fertilizer they make to fertilize their farms and they give the rest away helping other farms and families in WA. I was amazed at their generosity. They look at it as not letting anything go to waste. That’s important on a farm.

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The remaining solids from the anaerobic digester are clean and odorless and can be used for compost or comfy cow bedding.

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Because of these bi-products Dairy cows keep Washington green in more ways than one. Dairy’s total economic impact is valued at over $5.2 billion annually in direct and secondary effects. Washington dairy cows are a key ingredient in our state’s sustainable future. Cows and the Dairy farmers are amazing creatures serving our state in amazing ways. By making energy, fertilizer and dairy some farms are completely self-sustained. Check out www.akeyingredient.com to find out about other WA Dairy farms. And go get yourself some amazing WA Dairy. Milk is good for you!

How To Save On College Textbooks

With the College Board estimating that students now spend about $1,200 a year on textbooks, back to school can be exceptionally expensive for college students and their parents. To ease the financial burden of school, Alex Neal, CEO of CampusBooks.com, the leading textbook price comparison site, has the following tips to help students and parents be sure they are saving the most on textbooks this school year.

· Use CampusBooks.com’s Buy vs. Rent Tool: CampusBooks.com’s “Buy vs. Rent” tool includes a side-by-side analysis of the options available for each textbook, historic buyback prices and a purchasing questionnaire to help students make an informed decision and ultimately save them the most money. The tool uses a proprietary algorithm to recommend whether a book should be bought or rented based on the estimated value of the book in 6 months. Students should be aware of the options available to them so that they can confidently choose the option that fits their budget.

· Confirm Textbook Materials with Professors: According to Campusbooks.com’s data, nearly one in four students prefer to purchase brand new textbooks. This financial burden can be lifted by asking the professor a few essential questions about course material, such as if an earlier edition (usually substantially cheaper and with few content differences) can be used and whether supplemental materials (CD,s DVDs, access codes, etc.) are required.

· Take a Risk: If students decide purchasing the textbook is their best bet this fall, hold on to the book until next August to sell it back. CampusBooks.com’s data shows that books typically have a higher buyback rate in August since most students are buying and few students are selling books back to bookstores. Keep in mind that bookstores set prices based on supply and demand, so head in with books to sell at the beginning of the year when their supply is lowest.

· Evaluate Yourself As a Student: Some students prefer to rent their textbooks and some prefer to purchase them. Although CampusBooks’ survey revealed that 50% of students rent their textbooks, variables such as the duration of the class can make renting an inefficient choice. With eBooks, students should take caution due to some eBooks having restrictions on the amount of pages they can print, devices they can download onto and access to the text after a term is over.

· Explore Alternative Options: CampusBooks.com also features international editions and local library listings. Students can search for books by zip code and CampusBooks will show all local library results. Although you can’t highlight a library book as you would a purchased book and the time you can take out the book is also limited, this is a good option for some students since it’s free. International editions are the same book as the domestic edition, but they are often much cheaper since they are priced for their local market. American editions are typically the most expensive in the world. 

CampusBooks.com carries over 8 million new and used college textbooks in one convenient location. The online resource searches thousands of sellers and compares prices on new and used books, rentals and e-books for students. For more information, visit www.campusbooks.com.

Summer Reading into School @Scholastic #SummerReading #AD

This post is sponsored by Scholastic

If you’re watching Facebook then you’ve seen that school is starting in some parts of the country. My kids are super excited to get back into their school routines. We have school, then acting, auditions, then home for dinner a little TV and some bedtime reading. If we don’t have any auditions we go to the pool then have dinner and bed time reading. But summer isn’t quite over yet for everyone. As you know we spent the summer doing the SCHOLASTIC SUMMER READING CHALLENGE. Scholastic has joined together with ENERGIZER® to power the 2015 Summer Reading Challenge and encourage families to find innovative ways to discover the power and joy of reading. It’s not too late to take part! Now through September 4th, you can visit Scholastic.com/Summer. We have a bunch of resources for parents to keep encouraging reading with your kids.

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· Unlock Original Short Stories from favorite Scholastic authors!

· Find Parenting Resources including Summer Reading printables, activity sheets, booklists and more!

· Play the Innovation Machine Game – a fun and creative writing game and contest!

· Visit “Videos in the Stacks” to receive reading tips for parents from Scholastic’s Maggie McGuire!

These are also tips to avoid “summer brain drain”, as well as the Energizer Instant Win Game. And keeping kids reading really does keep their brains from having “summer brain drain”. Zoe’s school requires her to take a pre-test to compare where she falls after the summer and there was a tiny slide in her reading. So I’m really proud of how hard she worked on reading this summer. She read so many books. Let’s see her favorites were:

Harry Potter Order of the Phoenix……………..(SHE LOVES HARRY POTTER)

Diary of an Enderdragon ……………….(Because her brother reads Minecraft books)

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory ………  (Worth Reading To Her Brother Aloud)

Whatever After ………………(She can read three of these a night)

The Indian in the Cupboard…………..(Because mommy and daddy said so)

 

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About the Energizer Instant Win Game:

Energizer® and Scholastic are partnering to create the “Power the Possibilities” campaign which gives moms the tools they need to unlock their child’s talents, fuel their ambitions and set them up for future success. Parents can buy any specially marked pack of Energizer® brand batteries to scratch for a chance to win one of thousands of prizes that will power discovery and learning.

Prizes include a family trip to New York City, a Scholastic Study Corner Makeover, a tablet with Scholastic apps, a library of Scholastic books and more! Everyone who plays can also download free digital stories for their family.

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Follow Along Socially:

Sign up for the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge

Learn more about the Energizer® Instant Win Game

Follow @Scholastic on Twitter

Like the Energizer® Bunny on Facebook

#SummerReading

Back To School With AT&T LG Tone Bluetooth Headsets #Giveaway #ATTSeattle

 

The annual list of back to school items required from my children’s school gets longer every year. For some students, a new addition to the supplies: headphones.  With many classrooms featuring computers with interactive learning programs, headphones have increasingly become an essential item that traditionally includes pens, pencils, paper, and three-ring binders. My kids need headphones because we home school on the computer and all of it is interactive. LG Tones Promo

But if your kids are anything like mine, a simple pair of black ear buds don’t make the cut. They want multiple color options with premium audio sound and with their smaller ears the ear buds never fit correctly. .  Thankfully, AT&T is running a Back to School promo now on all LG Tone wireless stereo headsets in pink, orange, silver, gold, red, blue, black and white. From now through Sept. 24, save 10% on all LG Tone Bluetooth headsets.

We are giving a pair away thanks to AT&T.

Enter to win:

 

LG Tone wireless stereo headsets

 

To Enter:

Tell me what you like at the AT&T Store

Extra Entries:

Use Rafflecopter

a Rafflecopter giveaway

A Kmart Back To School Fashion Show

This is a partnered post, all opinions are my own.

I remember back to school shopping with my mom. We would go out and do it all in one day so I sort of do the same thing with my kids. We went out last week and headed out to Kmart to get back to school clothes. I had no idea their clothing was SO SO cute! It was hard to stick to budget, not because of the price because prices are so great. The reason we had trouble sticking to the budget was because I wanted to come home with a whole new wardrobe for each kid and not just a few back to school essentials.

Check out these three looks for girls (they have such cute dresses):

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With brands like Piper, Piper Faves, Route 66, Basic Editions, Joe Boxer, and Everlast Sport (for activewear) the options for back to school girl clothing are quite fashionable this year.

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I let my daughter pick out what she wanted and she made some really cute combinations. The jeans she picked out are by far my favorite, that and the blue jacket. She’s worn it every day since she purchased it. My daughter loves to shop and she could do it all day long. I made her try on everything. This is her dressing room photo shoot. Here are the looks that she put together by herself.

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She had fun mixing tops and bottoms with my favorite being the denim jeans she picked out. They are SUPER cute.

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My son on the other hand needed help picking out clothes. If he had his way he would be in character shirts 24/7. I had to set a rule, it has to be good for auditions. So he picked out a bunch of collared, striped and solid ones. And I found a NICE pair of jeans. Miles did not want to stick around so we had to do his photo shoot at home. Shopping is not his thing but fashion shows are:

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He makes Wrangler jeans look good.

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And I love these Joe Boxer shoes. They look great and the price was just right. For boys the brands include Basic Editions, SK2, Never Give Up by John Cena, Joe Boxer and Everlast Sport (for activewear).

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We’re now ready to be quite fashionable for the first day of school. What do your kids like to wear on the first day of school?