Take it to the Bank

On the weekends we like to try to go on out little adventures.

Typically we go out to breakfast on Saturday and then usually go to the museums, or out shopping or different events that are happening in our community.

Sometimes when we go out, Lily gets a case of the gimmies at the store.

She wants this toy and that DVD, etc. When we say no she just like every other three year old and is upset.

So after much deliberation, we decided to come up with a way that Lily could do different things to earn some money to purchase a special toy on the weekend.

Now before I get into the logistics of how this all works, I know that this could cause some controversy.

A lot of people are against children doing chores and think that they should be focusing on just their childhood and spending their time playing.

But, for our Lily, she loves to have little jobs to do. She loves to take her little Melissa & Doug cleaning set and pretend that she is cleaning. She would often help us by putting down the cats’ food and also put her clothes in the hamper.

So, it seemed for her, that giving her rewards based on helping around the house would make sense and it would also help her understand that “money” doesn’t grow on trees.

We will still buy her treats and little surprises, but now she feels like she is a real big girl when she picks out her special toy and uses her own money to pay for it.

But, this has to be based on your own child. Each child is different and this might not work for your child. You need to do what you feel is best.

Now, back to the logistics.

We looked around and decided to find her a piggy bank that couldn’t break because she would want to play with it.

We found this really cute Walt Disney World bank on Ebay that we picked up for a good deal.

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Instead of doing actually money we came up with the idea to use play coins.

Since it was near St. Patrick’s day I was able to find packages of green and gold plastic coins that were big enough to not get lost but also fit through the slot of the bank.

We decided that the green coins would be $.50 and the gold ones would be $1.

She could get green coins for doing simple tasks like put the cat bowls down for meal times, putting her dirty clothes in the hamper and setting her table area for dinner.

The gold coins would be reserved for bigger jobs like making her bed, cleaning up the mess she makes from all of her toys and helping to fold simple laundry like socks and washcloths.

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So far, it has been going well. She has been loving picking out her own stuff and using her own money to purchase her toys.

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However, if she loses interest in doing it, we will stop doing it.

 


Kind of a Gloomy Weekend

Did you ever have one of those weekends that is just too wet and gloomy that you just feel like staying close to home?

That was what our weekend was like just a few days ago.

We were spoiled with the beautiful weather on Friday (almost 80 and sunny) that when the temperatures took a nosedive and the clouds rolled in, it was so depressing.

So we decided to run a few errands close to home and then spend time inside pretending the temperatures weren’t so cold.

We started Saturday morning at one of our new favorite places to have breakfast, Maywood Grill. The food is wonderful, homegrown taste, and ginormous portions!

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This is seriously one pancake. It his huge!

The kid’s pancakes are so big that we often end up taking two of them home with us to heat up later in the week. (Side note: the best way to re heat the pancakes is to take one out of the freezer, soak a paper towel, ring it out and put it over the pancake. Heat on high for 10 seconds, and flip over and cover. Keep doing this until it reaches the wanted temperature.)

(Lily is such a ham!)

We then went to one of my happy places, when I’m not in Disney, Hobby Lobby.

Ounce again I had this brilliant idea that I should make Lily a dress. This time an Easter dress.

I wanted to choose something that had a vintage flair and I narrowed it down to six patterns at Hobby Lobby.

 

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I will do another blog post about which pattern I ended up buying, but that is another story for another day.

After there, we went on a search for a new lamp. Our lamp in our bedroom would only work if you had the knob between on and off. (Nope. This wasn’t a fire hazard or anything.)

We ended up going to Lowe’s (or LuLu as Lily calls it) and found our lamp. But, we couldn’t leave the store until Lily sat on a lawnmower. (Don’t worry. Kevin was there with her the whole time.)

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Also this weekend, Lily feel in love with these little toys called “Num Noms.” They are these little plastic toys that can light up, and smell like yummy treats. Their outsides are also inter changable.

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They are kind of cute, and Lily enjoys arranging them and putting them in fashion shows and weddings.

How did you spend your weekend? Leave something in the comments below?

 


Bonus Days

Living in southwestern Pennsylvania means that the middle of February is usually cold, windy and snowy.

This past weekend, and continuing through this week we have had wonderful weather that included temperatures in the 60s and sunshine.

We wanted to take advantage of this beautiful weather and decided to head to the playgrounds.

On Saturday we went to Morgantown to do some antique shopping and to visit some retro game stores. (We have become obsessed with playing old Sega Genesis and Super Nintendo games. That is a story for another day.)

While we didn’t find any antique stores, we did have fun exploring Seneca Center (where the tea room is located) and we found some interesting murals and one particular antique of our own.

We did a little shopping and sight seeing and decided to take Lily to the playground and let her burn off some energy and enjoy this bonus day of beautiful weather in the middle of February.

We were so tired after a big day of playing that we slept all the way home.

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On Monday, we decided to take her to a local school’s playground to let her enjoy the fresh air since we both were off from work.

Did you have the opportunity to enjoy beautiful weather this past weekend? Leave your comments below.


Tea for Three

Between Christmas and New Year, both my husband and I were off from work.

This meant we had the opportunity to spend a lot of time as a family and to do a variety of activities, while also spending some much needed time relaxing at home.

One afternoon we packed up the family in the car and headed south to Morgantown, West Virginia, home of the WVU Mountaineers.

I have always loved this town. It is a cross between a big city and small town. Since it is a college town it does have a variety of businesses, museums, shopping destinations and more.

One of our favorite places to visit is The Tea Shoppe at Seneca Center.

Situated in a little shopping area that resembles an old factory is The Tea Shoppe.

Inside guests are greeted by almost every type of tea imaginable as well as really cute tea accessories including little ceramic tea sets for your little Mousekatots.

But for me the real hidden gem is the dining room.

Here you are seated at a table with fine linens and china. The atmosphere feels classy but not stuffy.

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While their menu has a variety of options including salads, quiches, sandwiches and more, we always go for the Afternoon tea.

Served on a three tiered tray are a variety of tea sandwiches, a selection of pastries and a scone with clotted cream and lemon curd.

You also get your own pot of tea full of your choice of all the teas they have to offer.

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For our most recent trip I decided to try the White Chocolate Mouse tea. It was absolutely delicious. It had a wonderful sweet flavor that wasn’t over powering but still had a slight white chocolate taste. I honestly prefer this tea to hot chocolate any day.

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Photo courtesy of The Tea Shoppe

And for your littlest of tea party companions, they offer a children’s tea where they can get a pot of hot chocolate or lemonade (we requested orange juice because Lily doesn’t like the other two things), grapes, a sandwich of their choice, cheese cubes and a pastry.

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The grapes are missing because Lily couldn’t stand them on her plate. Also, her peanut butter and jelly sandwich is cut into the shape of a Christmas tree.

The prices for these two teas ($15.95 for the afternoon tea and $9.95 for the children’s tea) might be a little steep you are paying for quality tea (which can be expensive) and the experience.

I always like to take Lily here because it is a way to teach her manners and etiquette, plus it gives her the opportunity to dress up nice for an afternoon.

And if you think this experience is just for the ladies and little girls and your hubby or son won’t enjoy it, you would be surprised.

The atmosphere isn’t all that girly and the little gentleman in your life might enjoy being able to practice his manners (like holding open doors and holding out the chair for his Mommy.)

The Tea Shoppe is also very child friendly. They frequently have various children’s themed tea parties.

For example, at 10 a.m. on Jan. 28, they are going to host A Frozen Tea Party that will feature visits with both Anna and Elsa, while enjoying lunch and a variety of activities.

The cost for the event is $22.

But, no matter if you want to attend a special event or just go out for tea, The Tea Shoppe is wonderful place to take your Mousekatot.

Do you have a place that you like to visit with your family where your practice your manners? Leave it in the comments below.

As a bonus round, here is a cute website that shares tips on how to teach tea party manners to kids.