Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Farrell’s 5th Annual Charity Ice Cream Eating Challenge!


Farrell's 5th Annual Splendiferously Superific Summer Spectacular Ice Cream Eating Challenge is almost here...and it's going to be as ridiculous as ever! Did you know that 100% of the net proceeds from this event benefit CHOC Children’s and Make-A-Wish? How awesome is that? Do you see why I LOVE Farrell's?
Beginning Friday June 20 through Sunday July 13, Farrell’s will be looking to qualify the fastest ice cream eaters to compete, head-to-head, at their Championship event, which will take place on Sunday July 20 in Downtown Brea. From June 20 through July 13, anyone with an appetite for fun and ice cream can walk into any of the seven California Farrell’s locations during normal business hours and to try and qualify! In order to qualify as one of the fastest, and be placed into one of the categories, guests must eat a "qualifying sundae". Categories will include Men’sWomen’sKid’sBig and Small (one adult and one child), 4-Person Teams and Professionals. Amateur guests can qualify by eating a 3-scoop ice cream sundae as fast as they can. Professionals may qualify by eating a 6-scoop sundae called the Pig’s Trough. 
Professionals can qualify by eating one of these 6-scoop sundaes called the Pig Trough!
(Photo: courtesy of Farrell's)
All sundaes include chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry ice cream, hot fudge, pineapple and strawberry toppings and are then covered with Farrell’s freshly made whipped cream. The cost for amateurs to attempt to qualify is $20, for all categories, and $40 for professionals. Each entrant will receive a limited edition event t-shirt, a $5 coupon for a future visit to Farrell’s and the qualifying sundae. Remember: 100% of the net proceeds from this event benefit CHOC Children’s and Make-A-Wish! 
Farrell’s will invite the top qualifiers to their Championship event in Brea on July 20! Farrell’s will actually close down Birch Street in Downtown Brea, in front of their Farrell’s location. The Championship event is an all day family festival and will take place from 11am until 5pm. There will be lots of rides (courtesy of Carnival Services), games, prizes, raffles, food, booths, music, and more! 
How fun does last year's event look, especially when you've got Max rockin' the mic!
(Photo: courtesy of Farrell's)
This guy looks like he's still hungry!
(Photo: Courtesy of Farrell's)
She's powering through it!
(Photo: courtesy of Farrell's)
At the Championship event, the Men, Women, Kids, and Big and Small categories all compete to be the first to finish a Farrell’s famous Pig’s Trough that has 6-scoops of ice cream and all the toppings. The 4-person team and each individual professional are going to attempt to finish a Farrell’s Famous Zoo sundae, which is 30 scoops of ice cream with all the toppings. 
If you enter in the Big and Small category, you can use teamwork to win it all!
(Photo: courtesy of Farrell's!)
Yikes!
(Photo: courtesy of Farrell's)
Winners from each category will win a trophy and a year of free Farrell’s ice cream. 1st place in the Professional category also wins $300, 2nd place wins $200 and 3rd place walks away with $100. 
One of last year's winners!
(Photo: Courtesy of Farrell's!)
Farrell’s also has an option for those that just don’t have the stomach to pound ice cream as fast as they can, but still want to participate in all the qualifying fun. During the qualifying period, June 20 to July 13, guests can get the event shirt, the ice cream "qualifying sundae' to eat, along with a $5 coupon, all for the same $20, but they just won’t be timed. All YOU need to do is let your Farrell’s server know. Qualifying Farrell’s locations include Brea, Buena Park, Mission Viejo, Rancho Cucamonga, Riverside, Sacramento, and Santa Clarita. Complete details and rules can be found at Farrell’s website, FarrellsUSA.com/Challenge.
So who wants to win a year of free ice cream? 
I think Emi and I are going to attempt to qualify for a category!
Don't worry..I'll post pictures, when we do attempt it! 

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Disney 24: We Came, We Saw, We Rocked Our #DisneySide!

I must admit that I was a little hesitant about attempting the Rock Your Disney Side 24-hour event at The Disneyland Resort with Emi. I have an immense love for Disney, I just wasn't sure how it would be with a 9 year old by my side. We did some pre-planning for the day and even organized a little bit, thinking it might help make our experience a little easier. (to see that post, click here.)
I originally planned on arriving at The Disneyland Resort around 5 a.m. but waking up Emily was a little more difficult than I anticipated. We still made it by 6:30 a.m., which actually turned out a little bit better for us, because those initial crowds were already inside of the parks. We parked in the Mickey & Friends parking structure and that's where the Magic started for the day! Emi had a HUGE smile on her face after the CM gave her these.
Disney even offered carpooling perks for guests carpooling to the event! 
Here we are going down the escalator to the tram...at 6 a.m.! 
The parking structure didn't seem very crowded nor were the trams. After exiting the tram and going through the security bag check, we spotted the media area in the Esplanade with sand sculptures in it. As we walked towards the giant Olaf sand sculpture, we were both in awe of its beauty. Clearly we had no idea there was an even better surprise over there!
After walking around the media area to see if any of our friends might still be over there, I recognized the amazing Lisa Robertson of Babes in Disneyland and saw that she was taking a picture with someone, right in front of the Olaf sand sculpture. That's when Emi tugged at my shirt and (practically) shouted, "Mommy LOOK...it's Olaf!!!" Lisa was actually taking a picture with Josh Gad, I guess I just didn't realize at first! I try not to fangirl but THIS WAS OLAF! Emi and I walk around on a daily basis talking like him, quoting him, doing his snowman dance...we LOVE Olaf! When we saw Josh had walked over to the other side to take a few fan pictures and sign some autographs, we walked (very quickly) over there too. He was so kind and genuine with the fans, taking time with each one. He chatted with them, signed autographs, took pictures with them, and even recited a line from the movie for one girl, as she recorded it. It melted my heart when my daughter backed up to make more space for a guy in a wheelchair, so he too, could have access to Josh. It melted my heart more when Josh approached him and the guy's face light up as they took a picture together.  I then overheard a high school kid next to me say, "Oh my gosh, this JUST made my entire graduation trip here SO MUCH BETTER!"
At this point I was already overjoyed about our day and it was only 6:45 a.m.!
We chose to start our day in the parks inside Disneyland. I loved walking in and seeing Alice and Mad Hatter dancing in the entryway with some children to the music of The Disneyland Band. I loved being inside Disneyland this early in the morning because there were still lights on that you'd normally only see at night and it just feels like you're getting a view of Disneyland that you normally would never get during a regular visit. I loved seeing all of the guests in costumes. I already loved the ambiance. I think I loved a lot of things that day!
As Emi and I walked down Main Street, U.S.A., we just kept running into social media friends. First we saw our friend Caryn from Rockin' Mama and we got to meet Heather from It's a Lovely Life and Nicole from Presley's Pantry too. Next we spotted Pattie from Living Mi Vida Loca, who was channeling her inner Snow White. Then we got to sit for a little while on the patio of The Jolly Holiday and have coffee with Liz from Family is Familia
We LOVED our Maleficent buttons that they gave us at the Main Gate!
A little later it was time for some fun in Fantasyland. Surprisingly, the lines weren't very long. Emi and I have several mandatory things we must do in Fantasyland each time we visit Disneyland. Some of them include a ride on King Arthur's Carousel (specifically on Jingles), a ride in the caboose of Casey Jr. Circus Train, and a spin in the blue tea cup over at Mad Tea Party.
Jingles is so beautiful!

From Fantasyland we strolled over to Big Thunder Ranch to visit the animals. We have a special bond with the goats and sheep over there, and taking pics and selfies with them has just become something necessaryl for us on each visit. We're even starting to know each one by name. (you can learn their names from the tags on their collars). I'm convinced that the Disney goats have actually learned how to pose for a properly for photo. What do you think?


We were fortunate enough to run into the ladies behind Disneyfluentials while we were there and got one of their cool buttons! 
We also got to watch an interview they did with one of the goats. 
You HAVE TO check out that hilarious interview below!

I love how festive Mickey is in his Spring suit! 
All of the socializing really made us work up an appetite, so we cruised over to Stage Door Cafe next. We were on a mission to try the Red Velvet Funnel cake, which was offered exclusively for the Disney 24 event! After one bite, it was like.....WOW!!! We were fighting over who was getting bigger bites and who was eating more of the cream cheese frosting! Sometimes it's just hard to share!
We headed over to ride Big Thunder Mountain Railroad next but the line was a little longer than we were prepared to wait, so we just grabbed a fast pass for each of us. This is when we ran into The Disney Sisters! I'm telling you, it was a super social media day and, although we had never gotten to meet in person, it was fun to chit chat with them for a little while!

I feel like we did so much walking, talking, eating and tweeting all day long until we found ourselves in the early evening. Emi and I were both exhausted but neither of us was willing to admit it to the other one. We decided to take a walk into Downtown Disney for a little while to break up our day and re-energize with a Frozen Strawberry Lemonade and some Cinnamon Bits at Wetzel's Pretzels.  As soon as we both sat down, outside of Wetzel's Pretzels, I think I knew what was going to follow. We were both exhausted and I don't think either of us had any energy to walk back to the parks. I felt like we accomplished a lot in the 13 hours that we did rally that day! Honestly, it was one of the BEST days we've had at The Disneyland Resort! We saw so many of our friends and got to do so much and let's not forget, WE MET JOSH GAD!!!! I think THAT one is going to be hard to top!
Are you ready for my grand finale shot? Here ya go..........
Should YOU attend the next 24-hour event that Disney has? TOTALLY

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Bring the Family for Some Fun at Marzo's Next Variety Show for Kids!

If you have children ages 6-12 and are looking for something fun to do as a family, you should check out Marzo's Variety Show for Children at The Zephyr Theater on Melrose in West Hollywood! Featured in L.A. Parent magazine's round up of fun, upcoming events for children, Marzo's shows feature a talented, rotating lineup of professional comedians, musicians, ventriloquists, magicians, balloon artists, and more, plus games, prizes, and promises plenty of interactive fun! 
After doing a "trial run" of their show in late March and having such success with it, they're doing monthly shows throughout the summer, and hopefully beyond. Their next show is Sunday, June 1st at 3:00 p.m. at The Zephyr Theater. 
Marzo performing onstage! 
At this Sunday's show, Marzo, himself, will be performing for the audience. In addition, guests will be entertained by ventriloquist Christine Barger, Bill Chott, magician and a comedian known for the TV show "Wizards of Waverly Place", and The Twigs, a musical entertainment duo for kids. 
Some of Sunday's performers will include ventriloquist Christine Barge, magician and comedian Bill Chott,
 and the musical duo "The Twigs". 
Families will also be amazed by the wildly talented, FunnyEddie, who will be creating balloon animals at the show! 
Doors will open at 2:45 p.m. and the show will run until approximately 4:15 p.m.  Tickets may be purchased on the show's website at www.marzos.com., as well as purchased at the door. Metered street parking is available on Melrose with 2-hr limit, free 2-hr street parking on Vista, Gardner, and neighborhood streets, and valet available for $6 at Antonio's Restaurant right next door. The Zephyr Theater is located at 7456 Melrose Avenue, West Hollywood, CA 90045. 
For more information about the show, 
please visit www.marzos.com
What a great way to spend a Sunday afternoon with the family! Come on out to Marzo's! 
Follow Marzo's on Instagram at @marzosvarietyshow
and find them on Facebook here.   

Disclaimer: No compensation was received for this post. 
Show information and images were provided to me by Marzo's. 


Friday, May 23, 2014

How I Got My Child to LOVE Brussels Sprouts!

My daughter, Emily, loves most vegetables! It sometimes surprises me when I see her conquer a pile of spinach or a mound of asparagus because I certainly didn't feel that way about veggies when I was a kid! I actually remember washing my veggies down with milk and trying not to taste them! 
Lately, I've been in search of some of new recipes to incorporate different veggies into Emi's veggie repertoire. Personally, I find that just asking other mom friends what they do is much easier than looking online. I think you get more authentic advice doing so. 
Last month, on the car ride to one of our cheer competitions, I chit chatted with one of my cheer mom friends about things that she makes for her kids. She proceeded to describe how she makes these brussels sprouts that her kids actually fight over! Seriously? It seemed to good to be true but I was up for the challenge! I made a mental note that I was going to attempt to make them sometime in the near future and I finally found time to do so the other day. Of course, at that point I couldn't remember the recipe, but being the texting queen that I am, I just did this: 
Who needs recipe cards or cookbooks, right?
It seemed simple enough. I actually bought a package of the pre-cut ones. I threw them into the glass baking dish, drizzled the olive oil on them, shook on some salt, pepper, and garlic powder, and popped them into the oven at 385 for 20 minutes, just like she said. When I stirred them at 10 minutes, they were already looking yummy! At around 20 minutes, they looked good to me...with some crispy parts. I forgot to mention that I had never really eaten brussels sprouts before either. Honestly, they just never appealed to me, but now I needed to set an example for Emily, right? 
I tried one when they came out of the oven and WHOA!!! So yummy! The true test would come though when Emi tried them. She had a weird face when I set  them in front of her, but I let her know that this was "Ms. Jonnelle's recipe" and that her own kids fought over how many they each got, so that was kind of a game changer. (For some reason if it's from someone else it always seems to make it better!) 
At first Emi seemed hesitant but then I told her to try one of the brown parts and I think that's when she was hooked! She almost ate the entire dish I gave her BEFORE touching any of the coconut panko crusted chicken tenders I served with it! At this point, I think I did "The Mommy Happy Dance"! Another victory! Yay! 

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Ready for Some Fun at Disney's #RockYourDisneySide 24-Hour Event!

Emi and I are so excited about the Rock Your Disney Side 24-hour event at The Disneyland Resort on May 23, that we've been counting how many more sleeps? It's going to be our first attempt at one of the 24 hour parties. We've been doing a lot of pre-planning for the day, referencing the Disney Parks Blog site and a few other favorite blogs who have posted fun and useful tips. I think having a little bit of knowledge ahead of time is going to make a world of difference and being prepared to endure a long day can't hurt either!
Here are some of the park necessities we'll be bringing with us:
*Our APs-These are obviously the most important part of our trip that day! Not only to get in the gates, but also for parking. (By the way, to read about the carpooling perks that Disney is offering for this event, click here.)  
My business cards just go along with my APs in the wallet every trip! You never know who you'll network with!  
*A backpack-I almost ALWAYS bring a backpack with me, to the parks, so I can carry things like a water bottle, headache medicine, bandaids, sunblock, extra snacks, an autograph book, a pen, my camera, extra clothes for layering, and gum. I'm sure I'm leaving something out, but basically a backpack allows me to have my hands free, which is so much better than carrying a purse! 
This is my lucky UK Mickey Pen that I got from a Disney friend!
*Disney accessories-Emi and I like to wear our matching Minnie ears headbands when we're in the parks. Sometimes she prefers to wear her traditional ears too, so I'll be bringing both for this trip. (Do you see why I NEED the backpack?) 
*Coordinating attire-Although we're not going to the extent of wearing actual costumes, (we'll save those for Mickey's Trick or Treat Party) or even DisneyBounding like other park goers, we do love to dress for an occasion and had special shirts made for each of us! Why NOT sport our Twitter handles on a shirt, right? Sending a BIG thank you to The Shirt Cannery in Mission Viejo! They are amazing!
*Pooh-When you are going to be in the parks for an extended amount of time, especially when it's going to be crowded (or at maximum capacity like they're predicting), having something like a stuffed friend to play with really helps keep your kid(s) occupied during wait times. They also make for great photo opportunities. Some stuffed friends even have their own Instagram accounts. (Ours doesn't) Pooh is usually the one Emi likes to bring with us! 
*Our "Eat Our Way Through the Parks" Checklist-Yep, you read that one correctly! Have you read the post on the Disney Parks Blog about all of the special items that they're going to offer in both parks, exclusively for this event? If you haven't, then click here. After carefully analyzing all of the items, Emi and I are especially looking forward to trying the ones you see on our checklist of what we'll attempt to eat and drink at Disney 24! 

I guess it looks like we'll be rockin' our Disney Foodie Side! 
Wish us luck!
Will YOU be attending the event this time? 
For live tweets from the parks, follow along with us on Twitter @overthetopmommy and @overthetopkid and @UptownDisneyGal.
For pictures of our day, follow @overthetopmommy on Instagram.


Friday, May 16, 2014

Lauren McKinsey Celebrates Blue Goose Boutique Launch with a Giveaway!


It’s official! Blue Goose Boutique, Lauren McKinsey’s newest shop, is open for business! Blue Goose Boutique is a dream come true for them as they begin to sell what they fondly refer to as physical products. This is such exciting news because it means that you'll now start to see the cute designs that they offer in their printable shop now appear on things such as notepads! Currently, you'll find 7 notepad designs in their online boutique. They are so excited to be CELEBRATING the grand opening of their shop with a wonderful giveaway and will be choosing 3 winners! 
(see Rafflecopter below)
The GRAND PRIZE winner will receive: {total value of $194} 
     *$50 gift certificate to Blue Goose Boutique 
     *One year CUTE CLUB membership to Lauren McKinsey 
      {value $89} 
     *Hand painted {signed and numbered} blue goose magnet 
      {value $15} 
     *Monogrammed tumbler from She’s Kinda Crafty {value $15} 
     *$25 gift certificate to Paper + Pop 
      {a printing & cutting service for printables} 
     *8 Sparkle Sacks + shipping from The Purple Pug {value $50}

The SECOND place winner will receive: {total value of $65} 
     *$25 gift certificate to Blue Goose Boutique 
     *One month CUTE CLUB membership to Lauren McKinsey     
      {value $12.99}
     *Hand painted {signed and numbered} blue goose magnet      
      {value $15} 
     *One set of 3 monogram decals from She’s Kinda Crafty 
      {value $12} 

The THIRD place winner will receive: {total value of $43} 
     *Choice of 1 notepad set from Blue Goose Boutique 
      {value $18} 
     *Hand painted {signed and numbered} blue goose magnet 
      {value $15} 
     *Sheet of 20 monogram return address stickers from 
      She’s Kinda Crafty {value $10}

Blue Goose Boutique notepads make the perfect gifts for: 
     *moms AND dads 
     *teachers
     *coaches
     *birthday gifts 
     *graduations 
     *holidays 
     *and just FOR YOU 
Each notepad was lovingly designed by Theresa of LM and then made in their home. For now they are making their own notepads. Every notepad you order is designed by them, made by them, packaged by them and sent to you with lots of love! There are a fun variety of sizes and quantities of notepads available. Four of the seven notepads come in packs of two with an adorable pencil, coordinated to match your pad. They are are beautifully packaged in a clear cello bag, wrapped with pretty twine and have a matching gift tag attached. They make the perfect gifts and all the pretty packaging is already done for you. Three of the notepads are single pads. You will find the full description of each notepad on the website, but each tear-off notepad is filled with high quality paper and backed in thick recycled chipboard, making the notepads extra sturdy. Several of them also come with a magnetic strip so that you can hang them on magnetic surfaces like the refrigerator. 



Look how adorable the A to Z notepad is! Each page in the pad has a different letter of the alphabet and the notepad has 52 pages in all.  This notepad is inspired by the ABC collection Lauren McKinsey created a few months ago that is just adorable! To see an image of what EACH page looks like click here.This 5 x 71/2 inch notepad comes as a set of two pads with a matching pencil and gift tag. 

The Always be Sunshine notepad. This 5 x 71/2 inch notepad comes as a set of two 50 sheet pads with a matching pencil and gift tag. 


The dream BIG notepad. this 5 x 71/2 inch notepad comes as a set of two 50 sheet pads with a matching pencil and gift tag. 


The Little Bookworm notepad. This 5 x 71/2 inch notepad comes as a set of two 50 sheet pads with a matching pencil and gift tag. 


The To Do list is another personal favorite. I LOVE the 15 lines for writing and the HAPPY graphic at the top of the page. This 5 1/4 x 8 inch notepad is filled with 60 sheets of cuteness. 


This 3 1/2 x 8 inch notepad is filled with 60 sheets perfect for making your grocery and shopping list. It comes with a magnet for the back as well if you want to hang it on your refrigerator or another magnetic surface.


And just in time for father’s day, this adorable Superhero Dad SUPER list is perfect for that special dad! this 3 1/2 x 8 inch notepad is filled with 60 sheets that will make dad smile as he tracks his lists of things to do! 


This is just one more photo I needed to show you...the sticker that “sits” on the back of each notepad. Isn’t it fun? I love details like this! 
For the next 30 days, you can use the coupon code GiveAway-10 for 10% off your Blue Goose Boutique purchase.
Lauren Mckinsey is also excited to be giving away two CUTE CLUB memberships as part of their grand opening celebration. The CUTE CLUB is an EXCLUSIVE membership program that allows you to download EVERYTHING {yes, I said EVERYTHING} in the Lauren McKinsey store. They have over 1200 printables and add a new collection every week. Sometimes they even add two new collections. They offer an annual or a monthly membership. You can learn more here! You can even use the coupon code GiveAway-10 for 10% off your CUTE CLUB membership. Thank you for celebrating with us! 
Now, last but not least...
        go enter the giveaway below on the Rafflecopter! 
Good luck everyone!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Come Whip Up Some Fun with Kidgits Club's Super Duper Lil' Chefs at OC Simon Malls

Check out these upcoming family friendly events, Super Duper Lil Chefs, happening at Westminster Mall, Brea Mall and The Shops at Mission Viejo . The Simon Kidgits Club is dishing up a fun culinary experience for OC families to enjoy together. Pint-sized foodies will learn about the craft of cooking, with fun and educational food-inspired activities and giveaways. Kidgits Clubs crafts and activities are open to everyone, with members receiving premiums and giveaways.
Come whip up some fun with food at the following Simon Malls locations:
Westminster Mall: Saturday, May 17 from 10 a.m. to noon in Target Court. Children can participate in cookie decorating and a teacup-balancing relay race.
Brea Mall: Saturday, May 24 from noon to 2 p.m. in Center Court. Children can make their own Sweet Treat Necklace and Pasta Art, as well as participate in Coloring Food Fun.
The Shops at Mission Viejo: Saturday, June 7 from 10 a.m. to noon on the upper level, near the Children’s Play Area. Children can participate in cookie decorating and a teacup race.
The hands-on atmosphere of Simon Kidgits Club Super Duper Lil Chefs will engage both parents and children in exploring the endless imaginative possibilities of pairing creativity with cuisine. The event menu offers a variety of food-focused festivities ranging from cooking demonstrations to craft-making with meal items. The event is free and open to the public, however Simon Kidgits Club Members will receive a free Kidgits pizza plate and pizza cutter, while supplies last!
Please bring a non-perishable food item to the Westminster Mall and The Shops at Mission Viejo locations, to donate to a local hunger relief organization.
Additionally, Simon Kidgits Club® is teaming up with Lil Chefs presenting sponsor Warner Bros. Home Entertainment for the launch of Sophia Grace & Rosie’s Royal Adventure, coming to DVD, Blu-ray™ and Digital HD Tuesday, May 20. The super-cute, talented two-some of Sophia Grace and Rosie sang and danced their way to stardom on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and now families can see the little, lovable performers in their first original live-action movie. As part of the celebration, children can participate in a Tiara decorating craft. 
“Simon Kidgits Club provides the community ongoing opportunities to enhance the shopping experience at Simon properties,” said Jayne Stilson, assistant vice president of business development for Simon Brand Ventures, the business-to-consumer division of Simon Property Group. “Lil Chefs events are designed to immerse families in discovering that enjoying food doesn’t have to be limited to meal time and make visiting the mall an even more memorable experience.” 
The Simon Kidgits Club is a fun and informative program that focuses on health, wellness, education, safety and entertainment for children ages 3 to 8. Since 2003, the Simon Kidgits Club has kept children and parents alike amused with various events and activities while providing incentives for club members, such as special offers, rewards and games. Simon Kidgits Club programs have engaged more than 1.8 million parents and kids since its inception.
For more information about the Simon Kidgits Club and Simon Kidgits Club Super Duper Lil Chefs events, visit www.simon.com/kidgits.