Unique Ways to Preserve Family History

Connections are a critical part of our culture. It is in our basic nature to search for connections with other people. Ancestors and families can assist in creating a huge sense of connection. Many times though, we can feel as if we are alone, but if we reach out and try to learn more about our ancestors, it can at times give us the answers and or the sense of belonging that we need. We feel as if we are a part of something larger than ourselves. Each family has its own heritage and it is well worth it to preserve that heritage.


How many boxes of old family photos do you have in your attic? How many photo albums are on your shelves? Now, how often are those photos looked at? Maybe once a year? When family comes in from out of state? At reunions? Wouldn’t it be nice if you could have some special photos, or one special photo to pass down that would be looked at more often? That is easy to do. Now, you can have custom photo blankets made. Just find that special photo that you want to remember and for your progeny to remember for years to come and have it made into a blanket!


How many of you remember mom, dad, or some other older family member chasing you around with a video camera of some sort? That was a great way to capture more than just a moment. Do you ever go back and watch those old home movies though? You might consider having a family movie night one night and get out all of those old home movies and watch them. This could be a great way to show your kids what life looked like when you were their age.

Record Those Memories

Yes, media changes through the years, but you can always have recordings changed over to the latest and greatest media. How cool would it be if you had recordings of your great grandparents’ voices as they were telling stories? This is a great way to preserve family memories. Even if you don’t have recordings of your elders, you can make recordings for your future generations to listen to. You can also interview your elders to make recordings for you and for the future. Preserving living memories and connecting with your family members are critical aspects of a family history. You can use a digital recorder or even a smartphone app. A camera will also help you preserve those old stories and share them with other members of the family while preserving them for future generations.

Giving Made Easy This Season #DoneStuffCreateJobs


Ever thought about how many household goods and clothing end up in landfills? Me neither until it was time to clean up and declutter our home this year. Face it, we hold on to a lot of things. Clothes the kids have outgrown, clothes that have gone out of fashion or that don’t quite fit right anymore. Home décor that for whatever reason, no longer fits our style. I bet you could probably load a truck with all the things you have that you don’t need, want, or use anymore.

So why let it go to a landfill in the first place? We know it’s bad for the environment but millions of pounds of items end up in the trash every year. As long as those items are in good repair and still work (or aren’t full of holes or stains in the case of clothing), why not donate it? If it’s going to be hauled off to the trash, we might as well put it to someone else’s good use and I’m not just talking about thrift shopping.

Goodwill’s “Donate Stuff, Create Jobs” campaign is all about taking what you don’t use and putting it to use for someone else. The proceeds from every item donated to Goodwill supports and helps fund job training programs for people with disabilities and disadvantages.

The Glow at Monmouth Park Racetrack, NJ

If holiday lights are your bag of tea, or if October is your favorite time of year, you will love The Glow.   The Glow at Monmouth Park Racetrack in Oceanport, NJ is fun for everyone.  This walk through seasonal event is a Halloween lovers dream, with over 5,000 carved pumpkins ranging from pirates, to rock stars, to movie stars, and even dinosaurs and Pokemon carved into them.

pumpkin carving

There is a carving that is destined to be your favorite.  Your visit starts with a warm Fall beverage and a meeting with a real pumpkin artist as he creates a work of art.  Then there is a small tour through some Halloween themed exhibits, with various Jack o Lantern, pumpkin, and Halloween facts on display and indoor pumpkin decor.

halloween events

Then comes the main event, a walk through outdoor light up event where you can go scene by scene through the time of the dinosaurs, an extreme skate park, and more.  There are even local NJ spots like Asbury Park to visit in gourd form.  Check out government officials commemorated in pumpkin, as well as those running for president.  Best thing about those? They rot quickly, LOL.

Visit Chuck E. Cheese for Helen Henny’s Birthday! #ad

How long has it been since you have been to Chuck E. Cheese?  Hopefully not too long, but if it has been, this is your reason to take the kids- Helen Henny is having a birthday, so head on over!  They have some really fun promotions that you will want to take advantage of.


Helen’s Birthday Promos

  • $1.50 Dippin’ Dots
  • $2 off Helen Henny plush dolls
  • Everyone gets a Helen Henny coloring sheet with 5 free token coupon when they leave
  • Helen Henny will be there to celebrate + take photos with guests
  • Chance to win a pair of virtual reality headsets, a pair of wireless Bluetooth headphones and guest passes in the Helen Henny birthday sweepstakes (last day to enter is 5/27)


Make sure you know your “Helen Henny Fun Facts” before you go!

  1. Helen Henny’s deep passion for music began at an early age, growing up in New York City—right down the street from Broadway!
  2. (more…)

November is National Adoption Month #NAM15 #perfectparent

November is National Adoption Month, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, AdoptUSKids, and the Ad Council are spreading the word about and encouraging prospective parents to adopt older youth from foster care.

The theme for National Adoption Month is, “We Never Outgrow the Need for Family.” That’s because older children and youth still have many big milestones in their life they need a family for.

There are 415,000 children in the U.S. foster care system and 108,000 are waiting to be adopted. AdoptUSKids’ maintains a national photo listing service for children waiting to be adopted. Since the project launched in 2002, more than 25,000 children who were once photo listed on adoptuskids.org have been adopted and nearly 38,000 families have registered to adopt through the website.  Nevertheless, older youth are disproportionately represented – approximately 41 percent of children and youth photo listed on adoptuskids.org are between 15 and 18 years old, but only 17 percent of those adopted have been in this age group

Older youth and teens have lower adoption rates than younger children, and they often wait longer to be adopted. But no matter their age, all kids need a supportive, loving home and the teenage years are a critical period for growth. The new TV PSAs, which were created for the campaign probono, portray a dad giving advice to his teenage daughter after her first breakup, and a mom giving her son a haircut at home. The humorous, lighthearted scenarios aim to overcome fears adoptive parents may have regarding their own imperfections. The PSAs end with the tagline, “You don’t have to be perfect to be a perfect parent,” reassuring prospective parents that even if they are not ‘perfect’, they have the ability to provide the stability and security that older youth in foster care need and deserve.

The PSAs direct audiences to visit adoptuskids.org or to call 1-888-200-4005 (English) or 1-877-236-7831 (Spanish) to receive the latest information about the foster care system and the adoption process.

Family Easter Outfits at Kohl’s

Spring is the perfect time to refresh your wardrobe, and with Easter looming, it’s a great reason to drag even the most resistant men in your life out for at least a small upgrade, true?  We recently headed to Kohl’s to see what we could find for both of the men in my life to wear for the holiday this year.  The smaller one is usually pretty compliant, it’s the bigger one that can be somewhat of a fighter, lol. They both agreed, however, on getting new pants and nice shirts.  We got them things they could wear not only on Easter, but for future events.

20150314_135829Now that I look at it, it seems they are almost matching, though not intentionally- one blue on top and beige on the bottom, the other reversed, ha. My son decided he wanted to go in shorts (can you tell we’ve had it with winter and he’s looking forward to warm weather?) and my husband decided to get new jeans, which he could use. They both picked out their outfits without the other one seeing- my son was with me, and the husband was in the men’s department all by himself- I was amused when I saw how similar their selections were when we met in the boy’s department 😉

When Your Teen is Drifting Away

You’ve been a dedicated parent, always involved in your son’s life. You are his biggest champion, the one who will be by his side through thick and thin. That’s why it troubles you to no end when you see him making poor choices. You’ve done everything in your power to lead by example. However, it’s like the old expression, “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink.” If your teen is not following the right path in his life, you can talk until you’re blue in the face. It still might not do any good. Try some tips to turn the situation around.


Cut Off the Extras
If your teen is being irresponsible, take away privileges. That means no car, spending money, computer, or cell phone. Cutting him off will show that you mean what you say. Make it hit home that the extras in life must be earned. Adults don’t get hand-outs that they don’t deserve. The same holds true for your son. He may get his act together and head in the right direction once more.

Marvel Universe Live

When can you step into the world of super heroes in the flesh? Of course, you need explosions and action, fights and excitement, but all the while in a safe  and fun environment. The answer to the question is with Marvel Universe Live. This new live action show features The Avengers, Shield, Spider man, and even a few X-Men join in the adventure. This makes the show big and action packed, and of course not to be missed by any comic book or hero fan.

8 17 14 012The story of Marvel Universe Live is easy enough to explain, the heroes must split up into teams to save the planet from some of Marvel universes fiercest foes, including Hydra, AIM, Lizard, Rhino, and Red Skull. But fear not the super hero bill is quite large two including Captain America, Captain Marvel, Thor, Iron Man, Spider Man, Hulk, Wolverine and Storm to name a few. All of which play key roles in saving the day. As the group splits to various parts of the world the action splits up too, from secret laboratories to snow capped mountains to the Statue of Liberty the scenes are big and feel like you are in the action. There is lots of fighting, lots of explosions and also motorcycles and tricks. One of the most memorable scenes would have to be Spider man and Thor at the Statue of Liberty. Not only is the statue represented but the high flying action between Spider-Man and his foes are represented in a big way including flying gliders, web slinging and of course Thor’s famous thunder hammer.