Reviews, giveaways and memes - Jumpin Beans

8.4.17

Let @Zulily know about your favorite teacher!

Do you know of a teacher that really made a difference in someones life? Maybe you had a teacher that really made an impression on you as a child.  Maybe it is / was a teacher for your child(ren.)  The point is this... (Just my opinion, but hey, I can say what I want to on here, right?)  Anyways, I feel that teachers don't get the recognition they deserve.  They work long hours, they spend so much of their "free time" on each student and then don't even get me started on the pay...  Not paid enough, if you ask me.

FTC Compliant Review Policy:  The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are not influenced by monetary compensation.

Zulily is taking nominations right now for people to enter their favorite teacher to win a classroom revamp! (Read more about it below.)  Lucky for us, I have an extra special teacher in our life.  Mrs. Chickvara was the "first person I ever left Broxton with" that wasn't family.  Yes, until he started K-3, I had never left him with anyone. Sure, he had done nursery at church a few times, but I was in the church and he was right down the hall from me.  When I left him in "school" for the day, I was no where near him for the day. She took care of him like he was her own.  She showed us she was super special.  Add to it that she was MORE THAN a teacher.  He invited her to his birthday party... SHE CAME!!!!  Maybe that isn't that big of a deal, but get this... He invited her to one of his baseball games.  Want to know who showed up, in the rain and sat in the dugout cheering him on? Yep!  Mrs. Chickvara! Might not be a big deal to you, but to a young child, it shows that she really did care, more than just teaching him during school, she cared about him OUTSIDE of the classroom!
Not only did she help grow a love of imagination, reading and education, she helped to plant the seeds of love for everything!  Broxton is 8 years old now and in 2nd grade.  His school has READ ACROSS AMERICA DAY where people come and read to the kids.  Do you know that although Broxton is no longer at the school Mrs. Chickvara teaches at, she has came the past two years and read to his class??  If you ask me, that is going well above and beyond any duties of "teaching."  As I said, she is someone who makes an impact, not just in the life of the student, but in the lives of the parents too! Bet you can't guess who I am nominating!

Calling All Parents: Nominate Your Favorite Teacher to Win a zulily Classroom Revamp
in Honor of Teacher Appreciation Week

WHO: zulily, an online retailer obsessed with bringing customers special finds every day – all at incredible prices.

WHAT: zulily is celebrating and recognizing the efforts of 50 of the country’s most beloved educators by awarding them $500 in zulily credit to help outfit their classrooms.

                      WHEN: Nominations accepted between  Monday, April 3 – Sunday, April 9
                      Celebration will run on zulily during National Teacher Appreciation                                            Week: Monday, May 8 – Friday, May 12, 2017

WHY: It’s important to give a child’s favorite teacher something extra special. With so much of children’s time being spent in the classroom, talented educators play an immeasurable role in shaping the great minds of America’s future. On top of investing time and patience, according to Money.com, teachers are spending $1.5 billion annually of their own money on school supplies with the average teacher spending $500. Great teachers who go above and beyond are remembered for a lifetime and zulily wants to thank them in a major way.

HOW: If a child’s teacher deserves special recognition, parents can nominate them on zulily by sharing stories of inspiration, kindness or coolness. It doesn’t matter what grade level or school, zulily wants to know why they are so special and deserve to be honored.

6.4.17

Touring @ARMHC and their #WishList

Not too long ago, we were invited to tour the Atlanta Ronald McDonald House. You can read about our first tour at the Sandy Springs, Georgia location if you like.  The houses are similar, as far as the fact that they are there for making things easier for families that already have enough on their plate.
The night we were invited, The Atlanta Hawks had their flight team there to sponsor a night of fun for the families that were staying there.  We were able to get a tour and then have a fun night with the Ronald McDonald House Guests.

FTC Compliant Review Policy:  The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are not influenced by monetary compensation.

Being that the Ronald McDonald House is for families dealing with children fighting sickness, you know that they will have a great play room for the kids to go to and unwind during their free time. This is for the patients, as well as their family members.

The average number of nights a family stays at a Ronald McDonald House is eight.  Instead of having to worry about finding a laundry mat, they have a laundry room on site.  Laundry supplies are donated by the community. 
This is the Home Office area that is available for those staying to use when they need it.  

I loved heading into the dining area and seeing that they had activity pads and crayons readily available for the kids to have during dinner, or to take to their room afterwards. Sometimes, it is the little things that do make the biggest difference.  

This is the pantry.  It is open for family members to head in and grab what they need.  While we were there, a gentleman was making a box of goodies to take back to his room.  See that table in the middle? It has flowers in buckets.  The best part?  There was a note there saying " Families, please help yourself to some flowers!"  I actually saw a lady walking by with the biggest smile on her face. I overheard her talking about how sweet it was that the flowers were there and she just loved them.  She held them close to her and kept smelling them.  Again, the little things.  I never would have thought about that.  
After our tour, we headed back to the activity center to see what was going on with the Hawks crew.  It was great seeing the children in their playing and able to "escape" their sickness, even if only for a few minutes.  They had a hoops station set up.  The kids played against each other and even some of the Hawks crew played them!  

Savannah decided that she was going to give corn-hole a go. She liked it, but loved it when Harry the Hawk played with her.

All the kids were able to take the foam fingers.  They also had health activity books for them.  Oh yeah, we even saw the crew coloring sheets with the kids!  

Like I said, Savannah had a blast with Harry playing corn-hole!  
If you are in a position to give, they recently posted a WISH LIST on Instagram.  I am pretty sure you could order things online and have it sent to their location.  

Available at Walmart - Heidi on DVD

I hope I am not the only one that gets old and forgetful.  I remember watching Heidi as a child, but I can not tell you anything about it. I also know I liked it, but I don't remember the age I was or anything else about it.  Lucky for me, we were just send Heidi for review!  We will be watching it over Spring Break.  I hope that Broxton and Savannah enjoy it as much as I think I did! Did you watch or read Heidi in your younger days?
This is sold exclusively at WALMART, so head on out and buy a copy today!

FTC Compliant Review Policy:  The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are not influenced by monetary compensation.

With more than 50 million copies in print, Swiss author Johanna Spyri's beloved 1880's novel, "Heidi," is one of the all-time classics of children's literature, which has also spawned numerous adaptations - from a 1937 Shirley Temple vehicle and several Japanese anime series to a Hanna-Barbera feature.  This April, Omnibus Entertainment invites families everywhere to head for the hills with HEIDI, a new, lavishly produced adaptation starring Bruno Ganz and marking the big screen debut of Anuk Steffen as the titular Swiss mountain girl.
 
Orphan girl Heidi spends the happiest days of her childhood with her eccentric grandfather, Alpöhi (Ganz), cut off from the outside world in a simple cabin in the breathtaking Swiss mountains. Together with her friend Peter, she tends to grandfather's goats and enjoys freedom in the mountains to the fullest.  But these carefree times come to an abrupt end when Heidi is whisked to Frankfurt by her Aunt Dete.  The idea is for her to stay with the wealthy Sesemann family and be a playmate for his wheelchair-bound daughter Klara, under the supervision of the strict nanny, Fräulein Rottenmeier.  Although the two girls soon become close friends and Klara's grandmother awakes a passion for books in Heidi while teaching her to read and write, young Heidi's longing for her beloved mountains and her grandfather grows ever stronger.
 
Spyri originally published "Heidi" as a two-volume novel - "Heidi: Her Years of Wandering and Learning" and "Heidi: How She Used What She Learned" - and, according to the original subtitle, was written "for children and those who love children."  Aside from being translated from the original German into over 50 different languages, HEIDI has also become an enduring figure in children's entertainment through many theater productions; television programs, including one by the BBC and one by Walt Disney; films, including a silent one; a musical play co-written by Neil Simon; a video piece with Paul McCartney and Mike Kelley, and a talking dog version with Angela Lansbury.  There is even a "Heidiland" in eastern Switzerland.

5.4.17

Broxton loved the Mario shirt in the past @Lootcrate

I am totally loving the whole "subscription box" shopping that is going on these days.  It makes things fun and interesting.  I have been so lucky to have been working with Loot Crate in hosting reviews of their amazing boxes.  Each month, I think they have got to let me down at some point, I mean just how AWESOME is a company that always goes above and beyond, more than they did the month before?  Well, Loot Crate has YET to disappoint and that says so much to me!

When opening your Loot Crate, this is what you first see.  You know you want to dive in and check it all out!!!!

FTC Compliant Review Policy:  
The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are not influenced by monetary compensation.

When I finally had time to review this past Loot Crate, I set it all up to see what was inside.  I was in LOVE with the shirt.  I called Broxton in to check out the loot and I wish I had set up the camera to record his face.  Now, Mario was a game I played on my Nintendo back in the day with my dad.  I am honestly not sure if Broxton has ever played it... but he sorta freaked out when he saw the shirt! "MARIO!"  I love it!!!!  We were getting ready to head out to run errands, so of course he wanted to know if he could wear his new t-shirt, aka his "swag."  Yes, "swag" is a key word in the daily vocabulary of my 8 year old son.  

As you can see in the photo, you have Superman on the inside of the crate.  This month, as you turn your crate inside out, you transform it to be a COMIC BOOK HOLDER!!!!!   (I love this, as Broxon has decided out of nowhere that he loves comics and he wants to be a comic illustrator!) 
Included in the January : Origins LOOTCRATE:
The LOOTCRATE Magazine - This is a pretty cool one. 
Articles include: Superman through the ages, An interview with Rogue One : A Star Wars Story Writer and Who is Captain America's Biggest Inspiration.
Captain America Golden Age Shield  - Broxton loved this as he is a huge Captain America fan. This is a metal replica of the original shield. It comes with a stand and a certificate of authenticity.
Mario T-shirt -As stated, Broxton's favorite and has already been wearing it everywhere! 
TMNT Muglet - This is just too cool.  It is a mini - Tiki mug.  I think I will be adding it to my shotglass collection.  Either way, Broxton is NOT getting this one! 
Exclusive Action Comics #1 REPRINT - This is an authentic replica reprint.  We haven't looked at it yet, as Savannah set her sights on it and we don't want her messing it up!  

As I have said time and time again... Impressive!  Make sure you head over to the LOOTCRATE site to see what you want to get.  They have different crate options, I really think I want to check out the SMALL GIFT CRATE. You know, a throw back to my childhood!  SANRIO!!!!!   
Check out my Instagram page to see just how excited he was in that Mario Shirt!

4.4.17

Easter Basket Idea ? The Swan Princess - Royally Undercover

We love movies here. It is fun to unwind and just relax from time to time. I had no clue that an elementary aged child could have such a busy social life! It is nice for a break, so when we get the chance to review movies, we are all about it!   We were lucky enough to be sent The Swan Princess - Princess Tomorrow Pirate Today for review a bit ago, so when we were told about The Swan Princess - Royally Undercover, we were all super excited to watch it!  

FTC Compliant Review Policy:  The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are not influenced by monetary compensation.

After watching the first one, I knew Broxton was going to watch this one too!  Although the title is about a Princess, it is so much more than that. Both boys and girls will love it.  In the latest movie, Princess Alise teams up with Lucas to become spies!  Hello!  You know that has the attention of kids everywhere!
The cool spy gadgets are awesome and I think they would be able to make a good thing out of making toys to go along with this movie! Dolls for the characters, plush (and figurines) of the animals, the spy gadgets, the ship and the castle... Come on, let's get on it!  I have two kids that would love the whole set.  Anyways, getting back to the movie.
I think this movie would make a great movie night.  We are on Spring Break and the weather started off pretty nasty. This was great for us.  Maybe you can plan a movie night, or have it for entertainment while headed to your destination.  Even better.. EASTER basket filler!   Yes!  Kids (and adults) will love it!

Read on for more information:

The Swan Princess is back, with an all-new feature length movie! Get ready to go on an undercover detective adventure when THE SWAN PRINCESS: ROYALLY UNDERCOVER arrives for the first time on DVD March 28 from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. The newest installment of the beloved animated franchise follows the enchanting tale of young Princess Alise and her friends as they embark on a new adventure where they solve a royal mystery using their detective skills and spy gadgets. Featuring fan-favorite characters and all news faces, this next installment is the perfect fit for a new generation of Swan Princess fans, as well as nostalgic fans of the franchise.
Join “The X Factor” star Macy Kate in the studio as she records the theme song for THE SWAN PRINCESS: ROYALLY UNDERCOVER, "Born to Be Me." Macy Kate also sang the theme song in the previous installment, THE SWAN PRINCESS: PRINCESS TOMORROW, PIRATE TODAY, which was titled "I'll Be Your Star."

Synopsis:
After mysterious visitors arrive in the Kingdom, Princess Alise, Lucas and their friends go undercover on a secret spy adventure to see if they can be trusted. They will need all of their superior detective skills as well as some super cool gadgets to solve the royal mystery and save the Kingdom.

2.4.17

Let @DreamlandBBQ make more family time #AintNothingLikeEmNowhere

Alright yall.  It is Spring Break here in our area, so that means FAMILY TIME. Next up after that we have Easter, so I thought this would be a perfect time to post about Dreamland BBQ.  Living in Atlanta, I have heard of Dreamland for years, but sadly I had never tried it out.  Recently, I was invited to try out their Family Meal plan and LET-ME-TELL-YOU.  I have been missing out on some good eating!   
FTC Compliant Review Policy:  The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are not influenced by monetary compensation.

Up first - the Dreamland BBQ family to go menu.  Now, you might want to go and have dinner there, which is totally fine, but then again , you might want to stock up with their tasty food to have on hand over Spring Break.  You know, to keep YOU out of the kitchen cooking and allowing more time for family, especially over a great meal!  

I was impressed when we pulled up to the Roswell, Georgia location.  Just look at all that wood they have out there for cooking their meats!!!!  

As you saw in the above menu, you get to pick what side items you would like for your meal. I decided that we would go with ColeSlaw and Potato Salad.  The coleslaw was amazing and the guy I spoke with said he loved putting slaw on his sandwich.  Needless to say, Marc tried that and I do believe that was how he ate all of his sandwiches from then on!  

I will tell you now, I was tempted to order the chocolate dream, but after hearing that they are known for the banana pudding, I knew I needed to give it a go.  OH-MY-WORD.  That was the stuff dreams are made of. If I was told that was how they got the name Dreamland, I would totally believe it.  For real, that good.  Unfortunately, I told Marc about it... and Savannah... and ended up having to share.  I should have hid that in the back for a mommy time out treat!  (Mental note for future reference!)

I do hate that I didn't take more photos, but once I had it on the plate, it was all I could do to not dive in right now and say forget the photos for you guys!  Surprisingly, I have never really been a fan of BBQ, but this has me rethinking it. (Marc loves it, so I normally just go for the chicken!) That being the case, I thought I would be all about the chicken and not the pork, but I was constantly going to the pork when it was time for a meal!  I will tell you this, I thought the BBQ sauce had a bit of a kick to it.  I still enjoyed it, so it wasn't that much, but it is just enough to stand out and make you take notice.  I really liked that it was on the side, so I could add the right amount for me... and also have it to keep for other meals!  After being surprised with the flavor of the pork (and my choosing it over chicken)  I am eager to try the sausage next time!  Marc has already put in a request for the Rib Tips! 
While we really enjoyed the family meal, I do need to share one more thing.  I saw that they had fried okra on the menu, so we had to try that out too! If you follow me on Instagram, you saw I posted it. Like I said, it was a good 30 minutes from home, so the okra wasn't about to make it.  I opened it and they were flying in my mouth like they were scared to go for a ride.  Broxton decided he wanted a couple and next thing you know, half of the order was completely GONE!!!!   If you like friend okra, make sure you order it when you go.  There was just enough batter to make them perfect.  Not too much, but enough to enjoy the "fried" of it all. The okra inside was just right as well.  Not to mushy, nor too crunchy!  
As soon as we got home, we had to go ahead and make the food to give it a try.  I loved it all! The portion size was amazing and it gave us plenty for multiple meals. The closest Dreamland BBQ is a little over 30 minutes from us, but it is in an area that we go to from time to time.  I see that being a place that we order the family meal from when we are in that area.  If you are near a location, they do ship.  Make sure to check it out! 
Like I said, it is Spring Break here, so if you aren't going anywhere.. Make it a night in. If you are headed out of town, grab some to have a picnic on the beach! Don't forget you can order ahead and have it ready to enjoy on Easter too!  
*** They have location in Georgia and Alabama.  Look to see if they are near you
 
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