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Dock-A-Tot

When we were selecting items for our first baby's registry, I was overwhelmed by how many options existed for very specific baby needs. One item was to be used specifically for sleep, another specifically for play. Some were meant to be placed in the bedroom while others were better utilized in the living room. There didn't seem to be anything out there that could pull double duty in its functions or be easily transferred from room to room. We're city dwellers with limited space, so versatility in our baby items was not only preferred, it was essential.

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As a first time mother, I wanted to be sure to register for all of the things my baby could possibly want or need but I had been warned by friends that I'd probably end up with a lot of unnecessary items that would never be a part of our daily routine. Keeping in mind our two bed/two bath condo with closets already brimming, streamlining and minimizing our registry would be key. 

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I first came across the Dock a Tot while researching "registry essentials" on different blogs that I read and trusted. The consensus was unanimous: the Dock a Tot was a *versatile* game changer. Onto the registry it went.

 

Fast forward a few months and I can say that I agree with those other wise mamas - our Dock a Tot is easily our most often used baby item around the house, aside from our changing pad which is quickly becoming threadbare from overuse. While I can't get enough of holding and snuggling our sweet girl as many hours out of the day as possible, occasionally it is necessary to put her down in order to do things like, oh I don't know, shower and eat. Although I've gotten pretty good at the one handed eating-while-holding-a-baby technique.

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Our Dock a Tot pretty much goes wherever we go; from the bedroom to the living room to our family's home in Michigan. It's lightweight and easy to carry by the handle with one arm while you're balancing a baby in the other. We use the verb "dock" frequently around our home, like "go ahead and dock her" or "why don't you dock her and pour me a glass of wine?"

 

The Dock a Tot provides a comfortable and snug haven for our sweetheart when she can't be in our arms. We use it for naps, tummy time, play time with her activity gym, overnight sleeping, and for random moments in between. 

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I'm not one to offer advice to new mamas (or dads) - I'm only ten weeks in and still figuring it out for myself - but I would definitely suggest looking into adding a Dock a Tot to your registry. Your overcrowded, baby expo of a home will thank you.

 

Thanks to Dock a Tot for providing a piece for review. This post contains affiliate links.  

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A StayCation at Pheasant Run Resort

Summer vacation for most people means that at some point you will probably go on a family vacation. We absolutely love to travel with our kids in the summer. As the kids get older and have more activities in the summer, swim team, baseball, overnight camp, football etc.. it makes it more difficult to go away for a long period of time. We love the idea of Staycation's or one tank trips! It gives you the opportunity to explore an area closer to home that you may have not thought of visiting before. In the past we have visited St. Louis, Indianapolis, Wisconsin Dells, Cleveland and more!

Pheasant Run Resort

We recently visited Pheasant Run in St. Charles, Illinois. It is a full entertainment family golf resort. It has something for everyone in the family. Once you arrive at Pheasant Run you can park your car and enjoy your time with the family without leaving! Our family stayed in one of the newly renovated Tower rooms with a gorgeous view of the Golf course.

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Pheasant Run Resort

 

The kids loved the outdoor/indoor pool! They loved the fact that they could swim from the outdoor pool into the indoor pool. Of course they created their own game of it!

Pheasant Run Resort

 

The resort has a fun area that makes you feel like you are on Bourbon Street. They have an ice cream shop, an arcade, general store, a couple of restaurants/bars and Zanies comedy club!

 

Pheasant Run is very affordable and a fun place to check out. If we had planned our trip right we would of also gone to a Kane County Cougar's game! As their stadium is nearby and a great way to watch baseball with little kids. Pheasant Run has great offers right now make sure you check them out here.

Disclosure: My family receive a complimentary one night stay. All opinions are honest and my own.

 

 

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10 Reasons Why THREENAGERS Are Actually The Best

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10 Reasons Why THREENAGERS Are Actually The Best

Threenager: noun, three year old child.  May be spotted in nature crying because they were given the colored plate they had asked for or because they wanted to go to the beach and when they got there it had sand.  

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Threenagers get a bad rap and I get it.  They can be emotional, demanding and know-it-alls.  But while it's true they can be a challenge, they really are the best.  I'm on my third (and last) threenager now and while the grey hairs are increasing, I'd argue that this is really the best age.  Here's my argument...

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1.  Threenagers are easily the most excited people on the planet.  You walk in the door and they come running, jump into your arms and act like you've been gone a lifetime when you just went to the end of the driveway to get the mail.

2.  Threenagers give the best hugs.  I'm talking arms around the neck, massive squeezes that you want to soak in because they don't last when they grow up.

3.  Threenagers have no filter.  At times this can be problematic, but they will give you a fresh perspective on life.  As in "mama, your tummy is sooooo squishy!!!!!" Um, thanks.  I'll hit some more barre classes this week.

4.  Threenagers always want to cheer you up.  If you're ever having a bad day and it shows on your face, you can bet your threenager will ask you what's wrong and give you a giant hug.  

5.  Everything is new to threenagers.  They are trying new activities, or going to school for the first time and it's all on great adventure.

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6.  They are potty trained.  Or will be very soon.  No more diapers!!!!! That instantly boosts their awesome factor.

7.  Threenagers are becoming independent.  They can put on their own shoes or wash their own hands.  Sure, this also can backfire against you but if you're a crafty parent you can work it to your advantage.  My daughter LOVED to swiffer the floors at 3.  Ok, knock yourself out!

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8.  Threenagers have passions.  Nothing can stop a threenager with an interest in a subject.  Whether they know the name of every dinosaur that ever existed or wear a princess dress every day of the week.  Whatever they are doing, you can bet they are the MOST passionate about it.

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9. Threenagers brains are so cool.  They make connections that you would never expect and are learning things at rapid speed.  Their speech is getting clearer and it's always surprising what they will think of next.

10.  Threenagers are your biggest fans. They laugh at all of the dad jokes. And the grandpa jokes. They think you are the bravest/smartest/most awesome person on the planet.  Sometimes it's nice to have that reminder.

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So there you have it.  Ten reasons why threenagers are the best, not the worst.  Feel free to print this list and put it on your fridge as a reminder the next time a little body is throwing a complete fit in the middle of the floor.  As they say, the days are long but the years are short.  Snuggle up those threenagers while you have them.  Have you heard what they say about 4 year olds????

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It's Radio Flyer's 100th Anniversary and You're Invited to the Party!

The Little Style File is excited to partner with Radio Flyer on this post.

Radio Flyer is an iconic brand that just represents everything fun about childhood. We all had the red wagons as kids and now we find them in our own garages for our children. When you are a kid and riding on your Radio Fyler tricycle or being pulled in a wagon, there are no limits on your imagination. 

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Radio Flyer is celebrating their 100th anniversary and you are invited to the party!  Thursday, July 13th, in Chicago, the world's largest red wagon is rolling into town and bringing tons of fun for the whole family.

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Smile, Chicago! will host a variety of activities including a test track where kids can play with Radio Flyer toys, face painting and temporary tattoo stations, sweet treats, photo opportunities, music, and much more. The event will take place from 8am – 6:30 pm in Pioneer Court on Michigan Avenue.

We can't wait to celebrate with our hometown company, we hope to see you Thursday!  For all of the event details, CLICK HERE.

radio flyer 100th anniversary party

This is a sponsored post, all opinions are honest and our own.

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Outdoor Discovery Center in Holland, Michigan

The Outdoor Discovery Center in Holland, Michigan, is a great place for walking trails and learning animals and plants native to Michigan.  While the ODC has programming running all year long, this is was our first summer visit and we had a great time!

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Located on the outskirts of Holland, Michigan, the ODC has a visitors center filled with small live animals as well as taxadermy.  

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If there is someone at the front desk and it's not very crowded, you can get a real up close look at the animals!

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Madeline was surprisingly brave.  She held a turtle, touched all of the snakes and even held the bottom of a snake!

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The Outdoor Discovery Center campus is gorgeous right now.  There are tons of flowers in bloom, little waterfalls and plenty of benches and observation points to take it all in.

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The new Birds of Prey building opened late last fall and houses bald eagles, a golden eagle, turkey vultures and hawks.

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There is an ampitheater where programs like Birds + Brews take place.  It's a bird and beer pairing from Saugatuk Brewing Company.  It sounds like a great time for nature lovers over 21!

The ODC has tons of children programming from an onsite preschool to archery and kayak classes.  You can check out the full schedule on the ODC website.

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Just walking along the trails at the Outdoor Discovery Center you can tell that it was designed with kids in mind.  From little swings to giant frogs to climb, there are tons of kid activities hidden along the way.

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The ODC Nature Preserve is open 365 days a year during daylight hours. The main parking lot is located at 4214 56th Street. Additional parking can be found at Fillmore Discovery Park on the preserve’s southwest corner along 142nd Avenue.

  • No fee to hike the trails or visit the outdoor exhibit areas
  • Trailheads are located at the main parking area and Fillmore Discovery Park
  • Trails are crushed stone or boardwalk and many are ADA accessible

To  plan your trip to the Outdoor Discovery Center, visit http://outdoordiscover.org!

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