Choosing the Right Supplements for Your Family with iHerb

This article is sponsored by iHerb. All opinions are our own. More and more families are moving away from a conventional lifestyle. Moms are recognizing all the ways that a natural lifestyle is healthier for their families. With a little research it becomes clear that natural supplements can improve the overall well being of every […]

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The Force Is Female! Hasbro Is Finally Releasing More Female Action Figures For Star Wars: Last Jedi

It’s the strangest thing: even though Star Wars: The Force Awakens broke gender barriers by having a female hero, on toy shelves, there was a distinct lack of representation. One, Rey and the other small handful of female characters are greatly outnumbered by male ones in the film, but possibly worse is how certain toy companies chose to leave Rey out – or downplay the female character in ads.

Happily, toy company Hasbro (who had a Rey-free Star Wars Monopoly game in 2015) has sought to right that wrong with this year’s toy lineup for Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Not only are there multiple versions of Rey, but there are several other female characters – and they’re no handmaids. At this point, we don’t know how big their roles are in the film, but this is still a strong step forward. Another high mark for Disney? As far as we can tell, these characters also appear to be nonwhite, proving that Disney is continuing its efforts for representation the way it did for Rogue One. So who are these new mystery characters? Read on to get a peek.

No One Warned Me! Watching Football is Just Not the Same

We have four children. Three have “left the nest” and are off at college now after our twin boys flew south last month. They joined their older sister as survivors of this crazy place, leaving just their youngest brother at home with his mother and father. With our daughter leaving a few years ago, I felt prepared for the twin boys to bid us adieu.

Everyone we knew, and I do mean everyone, told us that with two leaving, it was going to be quiet at home. D’uh. And that’s a bad thing?

Watching football after leaves leave for college makes this dad sad.

Sure, sure, we’d miss the twins just as we miss their sister. We knew all of that already. We’d be just fine thank you very much cause we’re tough.

But no one warned me, the father, of the biggest negative to all of this coop flying — football would be ruined!!!

[Read Next: Saying Goodbye to the Sideline]

Today, I sat down to watch Week 2 of the NFL season and my beloved Steelers (winners yet again — 2 and 0 baby). Week 1 had been a snoozefest with the Steelers squeaking by the hapless Browns in Cleveland. That had boring written all over it when the schedule was first released. But today the Vikings came to town and Pittsburgh was at home. The excitement was back.

“Mean” Joe Greene adorned my torso with his “75” front and center for all to see. I was in my favorite chair with the gliding ottoman. My wife and ten-year old son were with me and my mother-in-law brought out some delicious food. Yep, everything was the same old same old.

I’ve been enjoying this routine for 14 years in this house and yeah, we were down three of our biggest fans now (stupid college), but I still had the chair, the food, three family members, and my Steelers! Fun, be ready to be had.

[Read Next: The Final Buzzer Sounds: Tears at the Last Game]

Here’s the thing. The game sucked. Hard.

Not because of the Steelers’ play (they won handily.) And not because my chair broke (not a chance we’re ever throwing that old junker a way!)

The food? Perfectly fine. Tasty even.

The problem was, no one had warned me that watching the Steelers would now become an exercise in talking to myself (or that I’m not much of a conversationalist.) You see, my fellow fans are just that – fans. Not fanatics. They enjoy a good game. They like the Steelers. But where’s the passion, people?! Where is the love?!? How about some good old-fashioned anger!?? Give me some complaining please. Tell me how bad the play-calling is, or how the defense should have blitzed there, or wonder aloud why Big Ben is overthrowing his 6’4″ receivers (WHAT THE HELL IS HE DOING OUT THERE?!)

My twins and I had mastered the art of complaining the entire game. Winning, losing, or on a bye week. In the AFC Championship Game, or playing the Jets in Week 4 and up by 30. It didn’t matter, we had passion, dammit! We expected perfection and also wanted to score some fantasy points along the way. “Quick, flip it to the Red Zone.” “Now, back to the Steelers – quick, we might miss another false start!” We discussed strategy. We dissected which other teams positively, absolutely had to lose this week. We high-fived. We yelled at each other (a lot.) We spilled stuff. This was football!!

[Read Next: What I Really Love about College Football]

Today, during a crucial 3rd quarter drive in game 2 of the most important season of all-time, the Steelers had forced the Vikings into a 4th down. A punt was forthcoming. Except it didn’t – the Vikings faked the punt on a play that fooled no one and the ‘Lers got the ball in great field position with a chance to essentially salt the game away.

In the past, my daughter would have asked if the punter was permitted to throw the ball — “I thought he could only kick it.” My sons would have yelled at her. I would have asked her “have you ever watched a game before?” After the play, I would have jumped out of my precious chair and high-fived the room. It was time to celebrate and call the next play – “go for it now — bomb to Antonio Brown!”

Instead, today, this play marked the end of football as I know it. In my house, at this critical juncture of the game, the following occurred: I jumped up to celebrate the big play. This caused my wife to be jolted awake (“how can you sleep at the time like this?!”) and enticed my mother-in-law to look up from her watching of cute, animal videos on YouTube. “What happened?” I was asked but could only muster a sigh.

But wait, I still had a son here. Surely he would save the day with a great comment or a celebratory fist bump, right?

“Hey Dad, could you keep it down a little please? I’m almost done with the 4th Harry Potter book over here ya know?”

No one warned me. And now it’s too late. Little birdies, please come home. I need you all to save football!

Related:

In My Son’s Empty Room: How Did it Go By So Fast?

Fantasy Football: Big Thanks for Being the Guy Glue

Gifts for College Students: 14 Favorites Your Kid Will Love

Matt Miller is a small-business co-owner, husband, and father of four.  Three of his children are currently enrolled in colleges much too far away from home.  Matt enjoys filling his spare time with writing, sarcasm, and sports.

The post No One Warned Me! Watching Football is Just Not the Same appeared first on Grown and Flown.

6 tips for a fun, safe & not-too-spooky Halloween with little kids

by Michelle Stein posted in Parenting Halloween is just around the corner. Which means if you’re a parent of young children — and if your family gets into Halloween as much as mine does —  you’re probably getting pretty pumped about costumes, pumpkin carving and candy. Right now is the perfect time to gradually introduce… Read…

Want to get the full story? Click on the headline above. And thanks for reading the BabyCenter Blog.

Kids Halloween Craft – Witches Cups

 

  • Use an xacto knife to cut the bottom out of the green paper cup. (adult needed for this step)

  • Turn the cup upside down on a piece of green cardstock and trace around the cup.

  • Cut the circle from the cardstock and glue to the bottom of the paper cup. Trim off any excess.

  • Trace the bottom of the cup on black cardstock. Cut the circle out.

  • Use a cereal bowl to trace a circle onto black cardstock. Cut out.

 

  • Cut the large circle in half. Twirl the half circle to form the top of a witches hat. Glue in place.

 

  • Glue the top of the hat to the smaller black circle.

  • Glue a gold or yellow pipe cleaner around the hat.

  • Cut straw and glue around the edge of the paper cup. Leave 2 inches blank in the front. Cut off any excess.

  • Cut a small rectangle from green cardstock and fold in half. Cut one end to a point. Bunch it up and glue it to the paper cup.

  • Glue on googly eyes.

  • Use a red marker to draw on lips.

  • Use a black marker to add unkempt eyebrows, warts, eyelashes and a chin. Draw a black line through the red lips to give the witch a sour face.

  • Add candy and small toys to the treat cups for a fun and spooky Halloween party favor!