Thursday, May 24, 2012

The Hilton Orlando and The Spa

As a Mom, I am always on the go… seriously, it never ends.

And typically, I’ll let myself run ragged taking care of everyone else in the family.

Not anymore.

Because when mama is broke down, the whole family suffers.

The other day I was invited to check out The Spa at the Hilton Orlando.

From the moment I pulled up, I was in heaven (and this is not entirely because I was without children). The valet was nice, the front desk people were helpful and it was a gorgeous hotel. 

The Spa was beautiful and a calmness was in the air.

No screaming children, no demands from work, nothing but peace.

I never wanted to leave.

I had a tour of the facilities, including the amazing gym that has a view of the pool. 

I had an appointment for a 50 minute massage so I got ready and was able to spend some time on their comfortable lounge chairs with ice cold water.

Nice, huh?

The massage itself was wonderful. I was so relaxed and the entire atmosphere was serene. I could've stayed there forever. 

But they wouldn't let me... well, they would've let me but I had two children at home that would eventually notice I was missing.

Overall, the experience was amazing.

The people were nice, the services were fantastic and I can't wait to go back again.

The Hilton Orlando is located at 6001 Destination Parkway in Orlando (off of International Drive) and you can find out about all the amenities The Spa offers by visiting their website.

I received a spa treatment in exchange for this review. All opinions in this post are 100% my own. Please see my full disclosure policy for more information. 

Summer Movies at the Enzian

Summer is all about fun in our family. Since the kiddies are out of school, I try and pack as much fun as I can in every dang day.

My kids love me for it.

And I want you to love me too, so check out this fun family activity (plus it's cheap... as in free on certain days).

From the press release:

"Enzian Announces a Sizzling Summer Lineup of Free Family Films

Orlando, FL (May 23, 2012) – Movie lovers of all ages can beat the heat this summer and enjoy an exceptional selection of family-friendly flicks ranging from unique, side-splitting silent comedy classics to popular retro favorites.  Enzian’s annual  KidFest Summer Movies series offers FREE weekday screenings and $5 presentations on weekends.  The “sun”sational schedule, sponsored by Walt Disney World, kicks off Sunday, July 22 and continues through Sunday, August 5.

To purchase tickets and for more information, visit

KidFest Summer Movie Series:
Newly restored 35mm print!
The legendary Charlie Chaplin showcases his comic genius as a lone prospector searching the Yukon for riches. The Little Tramp finds love and uproarious adventure in this wonderful, timeless comedy classic.
Sun. July 22, 11AM, $5
Tues. July 24, 3PM, FREE

Rated G
“Some say Casablanca or Citizen Kane. I say JASON AND THE ARGONAUTS is the greatest film ever made.”  -Tom Hanks
Special effects wizard Ray Harryhausen works his stop-motion magic in this mythological adventure complete with swashbuckling skeletons in a fable about Jason’s search for the Golden Fleece.
Sun. July 22, 1:15PM, $5
Wed. July 25, 3PM, FREE

Continued Page 2:
Rated PG
Embark on a rollicking journey of adventure, pirates, and mutants in this action-fantasy ‘80s classic produced by Steven Spielberg.  The Goonies, played by a dream team of child actors, hunt for buried treasure and fall into all kinds of trouble.
Thurs. July 26, 3PM, FREE
Sat. July 28, 1PM, $5

10th Anniversary. New 35mm print!
Rated PG
Hayao Miyazaki’s magical adventure and Academy Award® Winner for Best Animated Feature is a dazzling, enchanting, and gorgeously drawn fairy tale about a young girl who wanders into a world populated by Japan’s gods and spirits.
Sun. July 29, 1PM, $5
Tues. July 31, 3PM, FREE

Rated PG
A rare family film that inspires and entertains, FLY AWAY HOME is a thrilling adventure for animal lovers from the director of The Black Stallion. Anna Paquin plays an Australian girl sent to Canada to live with her estranged father (Jeff Daniels), an eccentric inventor, and finds herself “adopted” by a family of orphaned geese.
Wed. August 1, 3PM, FREE
Sun. August 5, 1PM, $5

Rated PG
Director Robert Zemeckis's trailblazing combination of animation and live-action was an instant slapstick classic from Disney and Steven Spielberg. Gloriously entertaining, Bob Hoskins stars as a 1940’s private detective hired to help prove a cartoon rabbit’s innocence.
Thurs. August 2, 3PM, FREE
Sat. August 4, 1PM, $5

About Enzian:
Enzian is Central Florida's only full-time, not-for-profit cinema for first-run independent and international films, classic revivals, documentary features, and select family entertainment. Enzian, a member-supported organization serving the community for 27 years, is home to the internationally recognized Florida Film Festival and the Eden Bar.
For additional information:
Phone:  (407) 629-1088
Twitter:  @EnzianTheater"

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Discovery Cove & Sea World

It's practically summertime in Florida (it's already hot enough!), so it's time to start lining up fun things to do with the kids over their school break.

Here's the latest from Sea World and Discovery Cove.

From the press release:

"A Day at Discovery Cove now includes admission
to SeaWorld Orlando AND Aquatica

Orlando, Fla. (May 22, 2012) – Discovery Cove is offering the ultimate vacation for Orlando visitors with the introduction of a new, all-inclusive package: A day at Discovery Cove now includes unlimited admission to SeaWorld Orlando and Aquatica, SeaWorld’s waterpark.

These three parks -- Discovery Cove, SeaWorld and Aquatica -- are now known collectively as SeaWorld Parks & Resorts Orlando, the only place in the world that features unique adventures that connect families with animals, the sea and each other. It’s the one destination in Orlando where animals are the highlight and includes preferred hotel stays and exclusive benefits.

“This new offer is incredible for guests because it allows them to explore Discovery Cove for the day and also enjoy SeaWorld and Aquatica during their Orlando vacation, so they can experience the amazing animal connections that all of our parks deliver in their own way.” said Toni Caracciolo, Marketing Vice President for SeaWorld Parks & Resorts. “It also solidifies the Discovery Cove reservation as a true, all-inclusive package,” she added.

At Discovery Cove, guests can enjoy a perfect day swimming with dolphins, snorkeling with rays and tropical fish, hand-feeding exotic birds, and relaxing on pristine beaches … and that’s just the beginning.

Opening later this summer at Discovery Cove is Freshwater Oasis, where guests can wade, relax and come face-to-face with new animals -- playful otters and curious marmosets. Plus, with unlimited admission to SeaWorld Orlando and Aquatica for 14 consecutive days, guests have the ultimate flexibility to live the 3D 360 journey at TurtleTrek, SeaWorld’s newest attraction, and then cool off at Aquatica, a one-of-a-kind waterpark that immerses them in the playfulness of the sea.

Starting at $229, Dolphin Swim Day Resort Packages at Discovery Cove now include:

  • Reserved dolphin experience
  • Unlimited access to signature experiences including:  The Grand Reef, free-flight Explorer’s Aviary, Serenity Bay, Wind-Away River and coming soon Freshwater Oasis
  • Freshly prepared breakfast and lunch plus snacks throughout the day
  • Beverages all day long, including sodas, water and alcoholic drinks
  • All swim gear (mask, snorkel, and swim vest or wetsuit), towels, locker, sunscreen and other first-class amenities
  • All day self-parking at Discovery Cove
  • A complimentary photo portrait of guest and their party upon entry to park
  • A pass for 14 consecutive days of unlimited admission to SeaWorld and Aquatica in Orlando before, during or after Discovery Cove visit.

Guests that have already booked Discovery Cove reservations on or after May 22 and who have selected SeaWorld Orlando or Aquatica with their reservation will automatically have access to both parks during their vacation.  For reservations and to learn more, visit or call 1-877-434-7268."

Monday, May 7, 2012

Giveaway: Stanley Steemer

My house has carpet in it... and to be honest, cleaning the carpet is one of my least favorite chores to do. Seriously, it's a lot of work and takes forever.

I'm more of a fan of having someone else do it for me.

Enter Stanley Steemer.

You've seen their commercials with the catchy jingle, right?

They provide a great service to busy moms like me. All I have to do is call them up (after checking their website for specials, which they always have), schedule a time, pick up my floors and the rest is in their hands.

They do a great job too.

Some facts about Stanley Steemer:

  • "Not just for carpet cleaning, Stanley Steemer’s expertise extends to hardwood, tile, air ducts, water damage restoration, and more!
  • Stanley Steemer’s proprietary equipment and cleaning processes remove more than 98% of dry soil from floors
  • With over 70 branches  and 220 franchise locations in 48 states, Stanley Steemer services 95% of the country"
Here's a recent commercial:

Want to get your carpets ready for company, a party, your own sanity? 

I've got a $100 gift certificate from Stanely Steemer to get your carpets (or floors) cleaned.

How freakin' cool, huh?

All I need you to do is tell me your carpet woes and why you need them cleaned.


This contest is open to US residents and will be live until May 21, 2012.

Good Luck!

“Disclosure:  The gift certificate, information, and additional gift pack have been provided by Stanley Steemer through MyBlogSpark.”

Giveaway: Big G Curvy Straws

    When I was a kid, I loved nothing more than getting a prize in my cereal box. I didn't get many toys growing up, so that cereal box toy was treasured. 
The other day I was commenting that you never really see toys in cereal boxes anymore and I dislike that my kid doesn't get to experience the kind of joy I did.

My favorite Big G cereal's are coming out with a new toy to find in your favorite cereal boxes, Curvy Straws!

Curvy straws are cute straws that your kids can slurp the milk out of your cereal bowl once you are done (seriously, who doesn't do this?)

My girls are crazy about their straws (We have the rabbit from Trix and the rabbit looking thing from Cocoa Puffs... he is a rabbit, right?) and I always make sure to have them on hand when we have breakfast.

My friends over at MyBlogSpark recently sent me a package with a Big G cereal and more curvy straws to play with. 

Want to get some of your own curvy straws?

I've got a prize pack for a lucky reader.

    Your prize pack will contain:
  • 1 box of a participating Big G cereal
  • 1 Curvy Straw
  • 1 ‘spilt’ milk bowl
  • 2 glow cups
  • 2 tangle toys
Just tell me your favorite (or your kid's) cereal.


This giveaway is open until May 21, 2012 and is open to US residents only.

“Disclosure:  The prize pack, information, and giveaway have been provided by General Mills through MyBlogSpark.”

Friday, May 4, 2012

Orlando Events: Food Revolution Day!

I got this press release and had to share with you.

Celebrate Food Revolution Day Orlando with Free Family Urban Farm Tours
Winter Park Harvest Festival, Edible Orlando magazine, Slow Food Orlando and Combine Efforts in First-Ever Day to Stand Up for Real Food

The Jamie Oliver Foundation is launching its first-ever Food Revolution Day, a global day of action to inspire, educate, and empower people everywhere to stand up for real food. Thousands of people worldwide will participate in events to raise awareness on preventing diet-related diseases, and to arm people with the knowledge and tools to make healthier food choices.
Here in Orlando, the Winter Park Harvest Festival, Edible Orlando, Slow Food Orlando and have combined efforts for Food Revolution Day Orlando featuring Family Urban Farm Tours where attendees can:
·       Learn about how the Urban Farm was developed and thrives, and tips and tricks you can use in your own garden.
·       Enjoy a seasonal collard greens cooking demonstration and cook-off featuring top regional foodies and chefs - Dawn Viola, Elisa Scarpa and Sarah Cahill.
·       Bring the family to enjoy children's art & planting activities, and family entertainment provided by Florida Hospital's Healthy 100 and Mission: FIT Possible programs.
·       Enter a food-lovers raffle featuring prizes from Loews Royal Pacific Resort at Universal Orlando, Whole Foods Market Winter Park, the Audubon Park Community Market, Ethos Vegan Kitchen and The Spice & Tea Exchange to support Florida schools through The Jamie Oliver Foundation food education box project.

Saturday, May 19, 2012,
Tours start at 10 a.m., 11 a.m. and 12 p.m.

Winter Park Urban Farm 
1650 Pine Ave.
Winter Park, FL 32789
Park and play in nearby Phelps Park. Street parking is also available on the north side of Pine and Elm.

Raffle tickets available for $3 each the day of the event.

Space is limited, so please register to attend online at

The majority of the world’s population is more likely to die from obesity than from hunger. In fact, in America, more people die from diet-related diseases every year than drugs, alcohol and war combined. Food Revolution Day aims to empower people to make healthier food choices that lead to healthier lives. One hundred percent of Food Revolution Day net funds raised will go to support food education projects for both children and adults through the Jamie Oliver Foundation in the U.S., UK and Australia. 

For more information about Food Revolution Day, visit
Food Revolution Day Orlando is hosted by:
The Winter Park Harvest Festival, a project of A Local Folkus, is a day long event focused on connecting the grass-roots with the deep-roots of our local food-shed by celebrating our local farmers, gardeners, entrepreneurs and non-profits. Visit for more information.
Edible Orlando is a quarterly magazine that celebrates the foods, farmers and chefs of Central Florida and its beaches. Visit for more information.
Slow Food Orlando is a chapter of Slow Food USA, a non-profit educational organization dedicated to supporting and celebrating the food traditions of North America through programs and activities dedicated to Taste Education, Defending Biodiversity and Building Food Communities. Visit for more information. is an Orlando-based lifestyle blog dedicated to family, food, and entertaining, with a special focus on sharing both the extraordinary and everyday moments of our lives. "