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American Girl Live

If you’ve followed The Little Style File for a while you know my love for all things American Girl runs deep. When the first American Girl Chicago opened on a Chicago Avenue it was a three story location with a theater in the lower level. Once American Girl moved to Water Tower Place, the theater was eliminated and I was sad that that aspect would no longer be part of the experience. 

Well, there’s great news. American Girl Live just opened at the Broadway Playhouse and it is an absolute delight!

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 American Girl Live tells the story of a cabin full of ten year old girls at sleep away camp. It was only fitting that I brought Madeline and her friend who are going to camp together for the first time this summer!

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The musical is 90 minutes long with an intermission. If you have an attentive preschooler they would probably be fine but this show is perfect for elementary aged kids.

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 As the week at camp goes on, each camper has an obstacle they must overcome and they get a little help from their favorite American Girls along the way.

 

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There is an add on to have a photo shoot after the show with some of the American Girls. It seems like they might rotate the characters because there are six at the show and three were at our photo shoot. Luckily we got Maryellen!

 

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Our American Girls absolutely loved the show. They are 9 and 10 and even told me on the way home that sometimes shows for kids can be “cheesy” but American Girl Live was just awesome.

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This was the perfect show to get these two campers ready for their if adventure this summer. American Girl Live runs now through May 12th, you can get more information and tickets at BroadwayInChicago.com

Thanks to Broadway in Chicago and American Girl for hosting us!

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Flip Sequin Shirts for All

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Flip Sequin Shirts for All

Boys flip sequin shirts are everywhere this spring and our only question is why did it take so long? 

 

Over Easter I took all three kids shopping for spring clothes, which is something I don’t think I’ve ever done. In Gap Kids Will found the t-shirt section and was immediately drawn in the the flip sequin shirts. His older sister has flip sequin jeans, flip sequin shirts and even a flip sequin backdrop so he was familiar with the idea. 

 

Flip sequins show a design and then when flipped over reveal a different design, like this Abercrombie Kids shirt.  

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Flip sequins have been all over for a while, but only in the girls section. Not anymore!  Here are some of our favorite flip sequin shirts around!

Gap Kids:

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Abercrombie Kids:

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From Mini Boden:

 

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But Will’s absolute favorite is this green tee from Gap Kids with a flip sequin shark.  

 

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He’s the first boy I’ve seen wearing this type of shirt and when he wore it playing outside in the neighborhood the other boys couldn’t stop flipping the shark. All of the boys ages 6-9 were amazed that Will had a flip sequin shirt and they thought it was the coolest.  

 

I’m so glad brands figured out that this trend could be for everyone and see lots more of these shirts in Will’s future! 

 

Are your kids obsessed with flip sequins, too? 

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Asleep With The Fishes

The Shedd Aquarium has a fun series called Asleep with the Fishes which lets you spend the night in the Shedd. We were excited to be invited to check it out and have all the deets on how to make this a memorable night at one of our favorite Chicago spots! 

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You don’t HAVE to spend the night.

While the intention of Asleep with the Fishes is to actually sleep with the fishes and wake up in the aquarium the next day, there is also an option to stay until lights out at 11pm.  This is actually what worked best for us because we had plans early the next morning.  Staying until lights out is still a ton of fun and would be perfect if your kids have a difficult time sleeping away from home or if the thought of sleeping on an air mattress is too much for your back to handle.

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This is the Shedd how you’ve never experienced it before.

Our family has done Jazzin’ At The Shedd for the last few summers and that is a super fun night.  But Asleep with the Fishes is totally different.  Jazzin’ At The Shedd is busy and bustling with a mix of families and professionals coming over to unwind after a day of work.  Asleep with the Fishes is all families - in fact you MUST have a child with you to attend.

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Asleep with the Fishes has a very limited availability so it is basically like having the Shedd to yourself. The photos you will get are ah-mazing.  

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Has your child ever had the yellow submarine to themselves? Yeah, this was the first time for mine, too!

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Also, there is little to no wait for the different hands on experiences scattered throughout the aquarium. And almost everyone gets a front row seat for the aquatics show in the Oceanarium. 

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Each event has a different theme. 

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The theme for our night was Aquaman!  There were photo opportunities and other fun activities that tied into our theme. 

The night is jampmpacked with family fun.

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From a scavenger hunt to 4D movies, there is not one moment that isn’t packed with fun.

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There is even a special feeding to watch and a late night dance party. Can you guess the last song that was played? Baby Shark, of course!

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It’s bedtime for the animals, too. 

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Our family learned we love to see all of the animals at the Shedd whether they are awake or asleep!  Observing the animals at night gave us an entirely new look into their lives. 

 

Asleep with the Fishes is one of our favorite family events we have ever experienced. It was great for everyone in our family - the four year old, nine year old and twelve year old, even the grownups! 

For more information or to get tickets for your family, visit sheddaquarium.org  

 

Thanks again to the Shedd Aquarium for hosting us! All opinions are honest and our own.  

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Cars.com Best of 2019

This post is in partnership with A Girls Guide to Cars.

As you may have noticed, the Chicago Auto Show is currently running from now until February 18th, and I have had the chance to get an up close look at some of the best new cars around. Every year Cars.com puts together their “Best of” list and they highlighted all of their Best of 2019 picks for us! Here they are…

The Cars.com Best Luxury Car of 2019 is the Mercedes S Class. It is the only car on the list that wasn’t at the auto show but you can read all about it here. All I can say is that for $170,000 it should be REALLY nice!

#carsbestof

The Most Fun to Drive Car is the Mazda MX-5 Miata. Although I didn’t actually move the vehicle, I totally get this pick. While it’s a two seater and there is no room for a car seat, this could be the best date night car ever. And while it is so tiny, it’s surprisingly roomy inside. The telescoping steering wheel makes it comfortable even for tall drivers. Learn more about what got the Miata to the top of the list here.

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The Cars.com Best Pick Up Truck of the Year is the Ram 1500. I honestly never understood the appeal of a pick up truck - other than for job purposes - until checking out this car. It is roomy and nice! Those running boards at the bottom fold up automatically when you are driving the car. The Editor In Chief of Cars.com even went as far as to say that this vehicle would fit a rear facing car seat better than any other.

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Another cool feature is the RamBox on either side of the truck bed. A member of the Cars.com team said she used the RamBox for baseball supplies but also mentioned that there is a plug in the bottom and it can also be filled with ice and used as a cooler! How cool is that?!

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The Family Car of the Year is the Chrysler Pacifica. This isn’t the first year the Pacifica has made the Cars.com Best Of list. It has every feature a family could want from sliding doors to stow and go seating. Plus it doesn’t look that much like a mini van.

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And the Cars.com Best of 2019 is the Genesis G70.

From Cars.com: The Best of 2019 award marks the 10th year Cars.com has named a top vehicle. The accolade reflects quality, innovation and value, and it's no surprise that Hyundai's budding Genesis luxury brand has bookended the decade. Ten years ago, the original Hyundai Genesis — the Korean automaker's improbably excellent gambit at a value-priced, bona fide luxury sedan — was our first winner. Now comes the G70, the smallest and most affordable sedan yet from the car-turned-brand: Genesis.

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Materials quality and attention to detail rival comparable luxury cars, but price does not. For its mid-$30,000s starting price, the G70 bears a full complement of safety technology, premium amenities and multimedia conveniences.

Until there are Genesis showrooms everywhere, you can currently purchase a Genesis at your local Huyndai dealership.

cars.com best of 2019

There you have it, the Cars.com Best of 2019. Is your favorite car on the list? To go even deeper into the selection of bests, you can join us on February 20th for the Best Of Cars.com Twitter Party where we will be celebrating all of this year’s winners!

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Disclosure: This post is sponsored by A Girls Guide to Cars, all opinions are honest and my own.

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What Drives Her - A Luncheon on Empowering Women at the Chicago Auto Show

The Chicago Auto Show - the largest Auto Show in the country - is happening now and I partnered with A Girls Guide to Cars for the “What Drives Her” luncheon.

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This is the third year for the What Drives Her luncheon at the ChicagoAuto Show and its an afternoon to be inspired and network with other women in business and media.  Industry leaders like Jessica Petty from Hyundai, Jeneen Rippey from ZF, Edie Wines from National Automobile Dealers Association and Tania Wingfield from BorgWarner (all pictured below).

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Their advice on careers in the automotive industry was so interesting. These women were pioneers and gave great advice on making your mark in male dominated industries.

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#SeeHer is an initiative about how we seen women from the Association of National Advertisers. It is important to show women in powerful positions in media because only when we see her can we be her. To learn how you can get involved with #SeeHer, visit seeher.com. It’s amazing the advertisers, television shows and networks that have come together for this amazing cause!

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My biggest takeaways from the speakers and panelists were:

  • Champion yourself but realize working on a team is not a individual sport.

  • Be confident in yourself, and always take the time to reset.

  • There is going to be a work-life balance ebb and flow, that’s okay. Plan for it.

  • The world will revolve without you. Repeat, the world will revolve without you. Sometimes circumstances happen out of your control but the projects will continue with you absent.

There was so much knowledge to gain sitting with this group of incredible women, but what I will take away most is new friends and the feeling of being uplifted by those around me.

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Thanks so much to A Girls Guide to Cars for hosting me at this event and sponsoring this post. The Chicago Auto Show is happening now at McCormick Place until Monday, February 18th.

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