Thursday, October 29, 2015

Halloween Party Game Generator +Weekend Fun Ideas

With Halloween falling on a Saturday this year, who says the celebration can't go into the night? While trick or treating may be the main event, it's easy to keep your friends and kids entertained afterwards with some fun Halloween games. But after shopping for Halloween costumes, candy and decor, the last thing you need is another {costly} to-do. Instead, try this Halloween party game generator, which features 20+ games that take little to no setup time. Most of the items you can find around your home and it includes helpful filters like kid friendly and large groups so you're finding a game that best suits your party. Created by Tiny Prints, do you have a favorite game for Halloween? {Personally, mine has always been bobbing for apples but you hardly ever see that anymore!}

Have a look! The generator is super easy to use and will keep everyone busy, even the grown ups, all night long!

And to make Halloween even more fun this year, here are four links I'm loving for the holiday weekend, all of which should keep the night alive and festive... um, Hello 25 ways to eat candy corn! I hope you have a wonderful and safe Halloween weekend, whatever fun activities you have planned!! 

by Vikalpah 

by Marilyn's Treats

by Penny's Vintage Home

by Raising Fairies & Knights 


Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Why Elf on a Shelf can go Elf by himself...

So, we're three days shy of November, which basically means it's nearly December and all the festive holiday shenanigans will be in full swing, around town and within my home. I’m a huge fan of family traditions, celebrating the differences in cultures during the holidays, and making Christmas a magical time for my three young children. Heck, I’m 30 and I’ll admit I still get as jazzed as my kids when Christmas comes around.

However, over the last few years, I’ve really gotten irritated with a little guy dressed as an elf; you may have heard of him? This whole Elf on a Shelf has gotten way out of control and has got to be the most annoying idea to hit Christmas since throwing tinsel on a tree. I mean, for real, who wants a creepy (yes, he looks like he’s going to dip your hand in hot water while you sleep) looking doll coming to your house every night for a month and getting up to no good, huh? I get the appeal for young children who still believe in Santa to think this elf is going to be in a new place every morning…that part I get. What really gets me going is that I think this fad (yes, FAD) is more for the parent’s enjoyment rather than their children’s. Going on Facebook and Instagram every morning to a montage of pictures about where and what these little elves have been up to is really not what I care to see, especially when the elf, who usually has some weird or creep-tastic name accompanying it, has been doing something that is not so child appropriate; think getting into the wine, messing around with Barbie or making poopies on the kitchen counter -ew.

I don’t really like having to say to my nine-year-old, “…No, Sara’s Elf on a Shelf wasn’t drunk when she found him with an empty wine bottle this morning because Santa’s elves don’t drink alcohol…” She didn’t even know what drunk meant until then. 

And at this point, I feel like there’s pressure on parents to get super creative and elaborate with these elves so their kids aren’t disappointed when sharing about their elf with friends. What if {god forbid} mommy forgets to move the elf?? What then? I overheard three conversations (three!) at pick up one day last year about this little guy and how hard it was coming up with new and creative ideas as to where to put him, or how the older kids wanted to tell the younger ones the fact that it was yet another thing mom and dad were behind. Like we as parents don’t already have enough on our plates during December.

I thought the book Elf on a Shelf was great for kids and was fun at first. But now it has become one more thing for parents to compete about -because yes, parenting is becoming a sport- for children to feel left out about if they don’t have one, and another thing for parents to do and keep from their kids.

I just found this out but you know something is a fad when there’s a Mensch on a Bench, the Jewish alternative to the Elf on a Shelf, designed to add more “Funukkah” to Hanukkah!

What do you think? I really can’t be the only one who thinks this tradition has gotten out of hand? Let me know! 

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

A Healthy Halloween +Wednesday Linky!

Tonight, we are headed to another festive Halloween get together for the kids, where their will be candy treats and goodies... & it's at my gym lol! I love watching the excited looks on my kids faces every time they get dressed up in their costumes and participate in another party or group activity. But by the time Halloween rolls around, we've already collected a bucket full of candy, consumed way too many sweets and worn through our costumes. Is it just me or does that kind of take away from actual Halloween night?

Anywho, as a parent who really takes the time to feed my kids right and keep things as healthy as possible around the house, I limit the amount of candy my kids can have around Halloween {I might even pack up half the lot and send it to work with the Hubs to leave at the office shhh}. I'd love to hear how you and your family keep the candy intake to a minimum during this week of candy overload? And how do your kids handle that? Do you like all the many Halloween events leading up to Halloween? I'm dying to know! 

Now link up and have some fun! 

Welcome to our 72nd running of the "Oh My Heartsie Girls Wordless Wednesday" Our event is seen around the world each week and continues to expand and we are happy to have you join us this week!! Tell Us Where do you blog from?


Oh My Heartsie Girl & Co-Hosts Welcome's you!! :❢:❢ #OMHGWW starts early ❢❢ And if you looking for something special from last week, there are so many good recipes and crafts, you can find them here
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♥~ MEET THE HOSTS of #OMHGWW ~And this week we are featuring everything from what it takes to be have a blog, to some delicious fall recipes to Halloween and Thanksgiving!!!Oh-My-Heartsie-Girl
♥Karren-Host // Oh My Heartsie Girl // Spaghetti-Squash-Carbonara // If you have never tried Spaghetti Squash your missing a great way to create your family delicious meals without using pasta, this recipe I made "Spaghetti-Squash-Carbonara" Twitter | Bloglovin | Google+ | Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram | HomeTalk 

♥Co-Host Ashleigh // Simply Wright // Pumpkin Caramel Biscuits // The perfect Fall recipe, these Pumpkin Caramel biscuits are such to make everyone happy! Plus, they make the house smell great! Facebook | Google + | Pinterest | Instagram | Bloglovin

♥Co-Host Christine // Cherishing A Sweet Life //Cazuela Cookie Bars with Maple Whipped Cream // In Puerto Rico, cazuela is a traditional pie usually made during the Christmas season. It is similar to a pumpkin pie but uses sweet potato, pumpkin, and coconut milk and usually contains no pie crust. I chose this recipe for not only the pumpkin lovers, but {and I know I am not alone} for those of us who don't dislike pumpkin pie, but I'm just not that thrilled about it. I don't know if it was the coconut milk, the sweet potato or the nutmeg, but after only one bite, I wanted more. The combination of the coconut milk and heavy cream, layered with the sweet potato and nutmeg flavor, really enhanced the flavor of this almost pumpkin pie dessert. Twitter | Bloglovin | Google+ | Facebook | Pinterest

Co-Host Evija Roberts// From Evija With Love //How To Make A Quilt For a Baby // When I knew my sister was expecting a baby I knew I would make something extra special for my new baby niece.. I really wanted to attempt and make a quilt for her.. Twitter | Bloglovin | Google+ | Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram 

♥Co-Host Shellie Bowdoin // The Fab Journey //My Dad Taught Me Some Valuable Lessons About Money//My childhood taught me that life is about a lot more than money, but then that’s because my dad made such sound decisions with his. When it comes to financial matters, my daddy taught me a few things about money that have helped me live a lot more and worry a lot less. Twitter | Bloglovin | Google+ | Facebook | Pinterest |Instagram 

♥Co-Host Donna Wirthlin // Two Chicks And A Mom // Football Halloween Costumes-Old School// Homemade football and baby cheerleader costumes from the past. Easy and so cute! Twitter | Bloglovin | Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram 

♥Co-Host Pili // My Sweet Things //How To Transfer on Fabric In Less Than 5 Minutes // I’ve been receiving questions about transfer into fabric since I posted my romantic pillow or lavender sachets and I thought that a picture is worth a thousand words, so I decided to make a little tutorial to show you how to do it. Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest 

♥Co-Host Indah // My Purple World // Chemotherapy And Its Impacts // Cancer and chemotherapy are somehow pack and parcel. Judging from my personal experience, chemotheraphy is probably one of the hardest parts of the the procedures we have to go through while battling cancer. Get more information about it during this month of breast cancer awareness. Hope it's beneficial to you all :). Twitter | Facebook | Pinterest | Instagram

Best Picks from last weeks party
Your Co-Hosts Picks From Last Week

Sadie Seasoned Goods //// From “Cutesy” to Spooky: Thrifted Cookie Jar Halloween Revamp // A cookie jar turned Halloween with some creativity and paint change the entire looks Must see the original!! 

Cooking With Carlee // Southern Caramel Cake #TheCakeSliceBakers //The cake is dense and moist and perfectly homemade. The icing is sweet with a nice depth. The extra drizzle of caramel and apple chips brought it all together. 

Repurposed 4 Life // From Chicken Crates to Coffee Table // This is the result of using things other then there original purpose. A very unique coffee table.

Purfylle//Make a Linky Party Tracker // Stella Lee shares how to create more than a spread sheet track linky parties, when to linkup

Marilyn's Treats // Questions All Bloggers Need To Ask Part 4 The Bottom Line // Even if you are a seasoned blogger or just getting started Marilyn gives us an insight of what it takes to have a successful blog.

Thanksgiving-side-dishes-from Dreaming-of-leaving
Dreaming of Leaving // 6 Best Side Dishes for Thanksgiving // What are your favorite side-dishes for the holidays? 

Lovely Livings //Autumn Kitty // LuAnn's Persian Himalayan “Girly”kitty loves to sit in the window to watch the birds outside!

The Lou Lou Girls // Caramel Apple Spice Cake // This is a beautiful dessert, and Jessica says it is easy to make!!

Our-Most-CLicked-On-LinkHalloween-Cameo-votive-from Much-More-Creative
Much More Creative // Halloween Cameo Votive // Brenda loves cameos and picked a skeleton cameo and made this amazing votive candle and vignette for Halloween this year! 

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Monday, October 26, 2015

Go to Crockpot Turkey Chili

It's still been quite warm the last few days here in Southern California but today is overcast and cloudy, causing me to feel the effects of the stay inside, wear cozy socks, don't get out of my pj's state of mind. So when it comes to making dinner I'm all about warm, hearty, yet healthy dishes that are simple to make. My go to dish is always chili since it's filling and served warm. I also like that with chili I can change it up and make it my own. 
Here is my go to recipe for a big crockpot (or stovetop pot) full of chili... it's prep time is quick and easy, and perfect for get togethers or even as a side dish!

  • 1 pound ground turkey *beef or chicken works too
  • 1 can diced tomatoes with green peppers
  • 1 can black beans *reduced sodium, drained
  • 1 can chili beans *reduced sodium
  • 1/2 onion, chopped 
  • Chili seasoning mix *I use McCormick's Smoky BBQ seasoning mix

*extras include: corn, red peppers, sliced black olives or kidney beans


  • Grated cheese
  • Chives
  • Crushed Goldfish crackers

What you'll do:

  • Brown ground turkey in skillet and drain fat
  • In crockpot, add all ingredients and mix together
  • Add Chili seasoning and mix until evenly distributed
  • Set crockpot on high for 1.5 hours and then low for 1 hour
  • Let it stay on warm until after dinner is served 
  • Enjoy! 

*I love putting chili in tortillas and telling the kids we're having burritos since my daughter won't eat chili but will eat burritos ha. And with the smoky taste the seasoning gives, this chili is great on a burger for the ultimate chili burger, or add some pinto beans and grated cheese for a home made chili-size! However, my favorite way to incorporate chili is on a nice plate of nachos! 

Sunday, October 25, 2015

A Viennese Christmas

As my husband and I start to plan our holiday travel plans, I can't help but go over all holidays past and reminisce in all the wonderous adventures my husband and I have been on. The question while planning a getaway is always the same... do we stay home and have a quiet Christmas? Do we head to Europe and visit family in Austria? Do we travel some place warm and have a destination Christmas, just with our small little family? With my husband gone so much this year, we have talked about taking a trip somewhere new {a place not either of us has been} and having a destination Christmas. I don't know about this. I think it would be too hard and confusing for the kids. Going to Austria is always a good time and one that makes everyone happy. Of course staying home is a great option and always the easiest. While we think everything over and figure out all the logistics of Santa, gifts and traveling during the holidays, I've had to have a look back at some of our time in Vienna {since it's so darn magical} during the Christmas season. 

The Christkindlmarkets, Weihnachtsmarkts or Christmas Markets are my favorite events to visit while in Austria, Germany and Switzerland during Christmas. And Vienna puts on a great market. There are many all over the city, with amazing lights, booths with items for sale, tasty European dishes, and music. There are usually activities for children as well. 

Outside of the markets, just exploring Vienna and it's old world meets new world structures are a sight and experience. There are palaces, museums, operas, shopping, along with traditional and unique restaurants that keep you busy, warm and happy while visiting. If you're lucky enough to visit Vienna when there is a fresh layer of snow, it makes the city even more beautiful and that Christmas feeling more alive. 

Some holiday activities that are sure to get you in the holiday spirit in Vienna this Christmas season are: 
  • The wonderful Christmas Markets, starting December 1st- 25th, all over the city
  • Christmas Market Segway tour 
  • Advent and Christmas Concerts 
  • Ice Skating 
To get all the information regarding these events and more, check out Vienna-Unwrapped