turtle time!

This past week we threw a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles party with Target (post to come soon!) and while we watched the kids play we noticed one thing that changed a life-long assumption. When we were young, we watched brothers and friends play Turtles. Each kid had their favorite character – Donatello, Leonardo, Michelangelo, or Raphael – and we always assumed that boys just had a favorite color and picked accordingly. As we watched our party guests play, we realized it was much more thoughtful than that. Each child seems to base their choice on the Turtle of choice’s skills, personality, and what unique qualities they bring to the group. We love that! We love that our kids are encouraged to look beyond the surface and find qualities they admire and want to emulate. For the party, we had each guest pick a Turtle to “be” – complete with shell and gear! – and talked about what makes us similar and different. Here’s what the kids and parents came up with!

LEONARDO & DASH by Nicole.

Turtle Time! Michaelangelo

“Something I admire so much about Dash is his ability to choose what he knows is right. To me that makes him extremely courageous! I love to watch him make these choices (or try) and have other kids see his wisdom and follow in his path. At a young age Dash I always considered Dash to be very wise. I watched him keep groups of his pals from running into the street, playing rough with their toys, and using kind words. At ages 3 and 4, that’s quite a leader! I love that he has the courage to stick to what he knows is right, even if it’s a risk. I’ve seen kids make fun of others for not following what everyone else is doing. So, I hope dash keeps this quality, always!”

RAPHAEL & RILO by Bri @collectedblogRaphael - Turtle Time!

“Rilo has recently started soccer and we’ve been amazed at how fierce and aggressive she is on the field!  She goes after the ball with everything she has.  After her first game, she came off the field and told us, “I didn’t do very good…I only scored one goal”. She’s always wanting to try her hardest and do her best at whatever she does. Apart from that, Rilo and Raphael couldn’t be more different! But, I feel like it’s always a nice conversation to have to see what behaviors we see in others that we want to mimic and avoid, right?”

But I will say this, like Raphael, Rilo has always been fiercely independent. From a very young age, she’s liked to do everything on her own. I love that about her!”

DONATELLO & MONROE by Kayti @thebeyoutybureau

Turtle Time! Donatello

“Like Donatello, Roe is very inquisitive and logical. He asks ‘why’ a million times over during the day and remembers every little detail. The other day my husband and I were discussing that we needed to see the dentist and I said jokingly, “My teeth are all going to fall out!!!” Without skipping a beat Roe said, “Then you can’t eat your food, you can just suck on it.” Yep. That’s right, little genius.

Roe already uses his logic and the lessons we’ve taught him to solve problems. The other day, we were in the car with a few of his friends who were using potty language (which we don’t allow) in our home. I asked his friends to stop and told them when at our house we don’t use those words. Roe added, “We can just say, ‘You’re so awesome dude!! Not those udder words!’” I’m so proud that he already knows how to stand up for what he’s been taught and that instead of chastising or making his friends feel stupid, he can spin it positively!”


Leonardo - Turtle Time!
“Quinn wakes up each morning and asks “What fun are we going to have today, mom?” He carries his party spirit with him everywhere he goes and is always looking for something or someone to celebrate. If he’s wandered off at the grocery store, park or really anywhere, I can almost guarantee he has found a new friend with his energetic “Hi! I’m Quinn!” He has the most infectious giggle and when he’s not laughing he’s usually saying something funny and making the rest of us laugh!”

So, after reading these little personality surveys, what Ninja Turtle would your kiddos be most like?

Find the Turtle Shell here and dress-ups for Michelangelo, Raphael, Donatello, Leonardo all at Target.com and in stores!


This post is sponsored by Target. More Turtles, More Bold and Daring Fun: Blur the lines of fantasy and reality with your favorite Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles at Target.

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ikea hack : dress-up rack

Dress-ups (excuse us, ahem, Super Suits) are in full swing around here most everyday and we’ve found that keeping them all in a big bin usually means that they all end up all over the floor! Trying to find the matching mask, belt, can be tricky. So, here’s a quick Ikea Hack upgrade to keep everything organized and turn their favorite pastime into a little shrine!

Ikea Hack - Costume RackAll you need is this “Grundtal” Towel Rail from Ikea. It has two bars so you could also use the top as storage for bigger pieces. We love the clean look of everything hanging, as shown. Hang up all your dress-ups by outfit, tucking and securing belts, hats and masks right on to the hanger either with a clothespin, safety pin or over the hook. We hung this right above eye level so the bigger boys can grab easily, but they don’t drag.

Ikea Hack - Costume Rack
If you’re looking to start your own super dress-up collection, here are some favorites:
Ikea Hack - Costume Rack
Captain America // Bumblebee Transformer // Wolverine  // Power Ranger // The Flash // Iron Patriot // Ninja //

Are your kids into dress-up? What characters do they love to be? It seems that every kid we know calls them something different, but takes it pretty equal in seriousness.

Don’t miss these posts, too! Meet a Small Fry who has a new dress-up and accompanying persona everyday! // And another who’s obsessed with vacuums.

costco for kids!

We had got such great feedback from sharing our favorite healthier options at Target, we wanted to keep the conversation going with a few other stores we can’t live without! Next up, Costco! The membership fee is worth the excellent produce quality alone, but add on all of these great items and Costco becomes an absolute must for us.
Costco Picks for Kids! 1. Veggie Straws: These babies are dairy, gluten and soy free and added veggies like potato, sweet potato, carrot and spinach!

2. Dehydrated fruit packets: Bananas strawberry and apple are a great little snack for the on-the-go.

3. Whole Fruit Push-up Popsicles with Organic Juice: when kids are begging for a treat or dessert this is such a great option. Made with whole fruits and organic juices, even colored with beets, they’re awesome!

4. Mixed Nuts: So much protein and healthy fats. It’s a great snack for in between meals and for kids who are more effected by drops in blood sugar.

5. Babybel Cheese Wheels: These little wheels are so cute and fun for kids (and adults!) they’re great on their own or paired with all kinds of healthy additions. We love all Babybel’s snack ideas on their site!

6. The Flax Seed chips by Food Should Taste Good go with pretty much all of Costco’s amazing dip variety. You all know how we love a good dip, but if your kids can handle a little bite they’re the best with the Jalapeño Yogurt Dip.

7 & 8. Gummy Vitamins are truthfully the only way a couple of us adults get this type of multi-vitamin. They sell lots of different types, we love the Lil Critters, and then Schiff’s chewable probiotic for maintaing healthy bacteria in the digestive system and strengthening the immune system.

9. Fruit Leather: This is another great dessert substitute. We’ve learned if you act like it’s a treat, it is one. Make it extra special and only for after a good lunch or dinner and your kids will believe it!

10. Annie’s Snack Packs: Great for tossing into lunch boxes. Organic wheat and real aged cheddar make them pretty irresistible to the mamas, too!

11. Go Go Squeez’s are dangerous in the sense that if your kids find the stash they’d be gone in a few minutes. Hide these on the top shelf!

12. Honest Kids: Organic juice boxes: Another great lunch box addition.

13. Nature Valley bars are so good. Irresistible even. We love being able to buy a big ol’ box for when we get to bring treats for the whole soccer team, or a big play date.

What other food items for your family have you found at Costco? Also, what other stores are a must stop on your grocery rotation?

Cal’s 3rd Birthday

By Emily.

My little guy, Callum, turned three at the end of July and when I thought about what I wanted to remember most about him this year, it had to be his little dialect. He has his own way of saying just about everything and it brings a smile to my face everyday. So why not throw party all about exactly who he is at this moment. We focused everything on his favorite foods said only the way Cal can.

Now, I am an anti-party planner. I avoid going all out at all costs, but my lifelong love for a good craft will never die. So we recreated this one simple element of the party for you guys today! It was so fun watching all our loved ones sound out each sign and repeat it in Cal’s native tongue. Can you guess them all?

Callum Says - Birthday Party with all his favorites said just the way he likes them!

Chocolate Milk || Watermelon

Callum Says - Birthday Party with all his favorites said just the way he likes them!

Spicy Jalapeño Chips || Popsicle

Callum Says - Birthday Party with all his favorites said just the way he likes them!

It was so easy and added so much personality to an otherwise pretty straight-forward pool party. It was truly all about Cal and the pictures will always remind me of our little guy at age 3. To recreate it, print your signs out on card stock and tape them to those free paint stirrers you get at hardware stores (spray paint or covered with colorful tape) and you’re set!

Find our other birthday parties and ideas right here!

Small Fry Films: Paper Toys

This film has been on our list since our Giant Paper Airplane post last year, so we’re thrilled to share it today! Made with our main guy Jenner of Lumineux Films and for any parent who’s ever needed to impress their kiddo with some skilled folding abilities. Small Fry Films presents – making the perfect paper airplane, boat and hat!

Check out our other workshop posts:

Water Color Cut-outs, Ocean Sounds Stick, Paper Bouquet, Pencil Pouch, Cereal Box Jet Packs and more! You can find all our DIY projects made by kids for kids right here!