Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Marriott “Nickelodeon Your Stay”

It's summertime and for most of us that means: vacation! And with that means fun, family-friendly destinations that the whole family can enjoy, no matter how old or young you may be.

The hotel part of it is key, isn't it? We always try to find a place to stay that's kid-friendly and we always try to make sure the kids are as comfortable as possible. Extra! Bonus! Points! if the hotel has a swimming pool.

But sometimes even a pool isn't good enough.

Kids get bored easily, don't they?

I typically find myself packing not only essentials necessary for the trip but items that will keep my kids occupied regardless of whether we are in the car, or in our hotel for the night. Variety is the key, or so I've found.

Recently, Marriott and Nickelodeon came up with a great new promotion to keep kids happy and occupied while staying at a hotel on vacation. So listen up; starting July 1st, you can arrange to "Nickelodeon Your Stay" at nearly 2,000 hotels with the Marriott brands. This wonderful promotion translates to this: ALL kids get free activities including a Nickelodeon bracelet with a code to access free online games at Nickelodeon, and an activity book with challenging puzzles and mazes. And if you dine in? Kids who eat at the hotels' restaurants also receive a place mat featuring favorite Nickelodeon characters such as SpongeBob SquarePants and Dora the Explorer.

And to make this experience even better - if you can imagine that, Marriott and Nickelodeon are also offering an upgraded package at several of Marriott's brands (including Courtyard, Fairfield Inn & Suites, SpringHill Suites, Residence Inn and TownePlace Suites) for just $10. And so what will that $10 get you? I'll tell you! It includes all the free items plus a SpongeBob activity bag and splash ball, Nickelodeon sunglasses, and a 3-D build-your-own SpongeBob craft.

And let me tell you, we received this little promotional package in the mail and my 4 year old? LOVES the SpongeBob activity bag. As a matter of fact, he asked to take it to day camp for show and tell.

For $20 at the Marriott and JW Marriott Hotels & Resorts kids get all the above items and a special SpongeBob SquarePants or Dora the Explorer pillowcase and storybook. Marriott and Nickelodeon are making it easier for kids to enjoy their stay for an affordable price that parents like.

Visit 'Nickelodeon Your Stay' for more information. And while you are there checking things out, book a room. Make sure you also check out their free, downloadable, Nickelodeon themed travel games under the free goodies section.

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Disclaimer: “I wrote this review while participating in a blog campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Marriott and received a Nickelodeon gift pack to facilitate my candid review. Mom Central also sent me a gift card to thank me for taking the time to participate.”

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Things I love right this minute

1. Reusablebags! I won this cute little 'lunchbug' (the ladybug one) not that long ago and I about died and went to heaven when I received it because it's so stinking cute! Since I avidly bring my lunch to work, it's perfect for me. And I never have to worry about it getting mixed up in the workplace refrigerator because no one else has one like it! It's totally eco-friendly, made out of acrylic-coated cotton and is PVC Free. It's machine washable, light, roomy and made in the USA. Check out Reusablebags today! They have a great selection, you won't be disappointed.

2. REACH Access Flosser! A few weeks ago I visited the dentist for a routine check-up/cleaning and once again I got lectured on flossing my teeth regularly. And I admit, it's the one thing concerning oral care that I ALWAYS either forget to do, or neglect to do because it's a pain in the butt. My teeth are spaced closely together so it's just always been hard for me to maneuver dental floss in between each and every tooth. Not to mention it hurts. It's just easier for me to leave out of my routine all together I've gotten older it's more important now than ever to actually floss. The dental hygienist suggested that I try a REACH Access Flosser so I purchased one at her urging that weekend at the grocery store. And you guys, I love it! I've flossed my teeth more in the last few weeks than I have in years. The flosser is easy to use and affordable. Make sure you check out their website, they have a few special offers if you are interested in trying one out for yourself!

3. Magic Skirts! Right before our trip to Hawaii last year I happened upon Magic Skirts in my most favorite local shop in my town. What attracted me to them was how eye catching they were, and their versatility! Magic Skirts are made out of exclusive silk and vintage sari material, they are double layered, reversible and come in a wide array of funky colors and designs. And they are dubbed 'magic skirts' because you can wear them in so many different ways! I have an extra long one and a medium length one and I absolutely love them both. And when I say you can wear Magic Skirts in a number of ways, I mean it.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Make it Monday: Multigrain Mac and Cheese

12 ounces multigrain or whole-wheat elbow macaroni (3 1/2 cups)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons bread crumbs
Kosher salt and pepper
1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley (optional)
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole milk
3 1/2 cups grated Cheddar (12 ounces)

Cook the macaroni according to the package directions.

Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon of the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the bread crumbs and cook, stirring, until golden, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and the parsley (if using). Transfer to a small bowl and set aside.

Wipe out the saucepan and melt the remaining tablespoon of butter over medium heat. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Whisk in the milk and cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce has slightly thickened, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the Cheddar and 1 1/2 teaspoon salt and whisk until the cheese melts. Stir in the macaroni.

Divide among bowls and sprinkle with the bread crumbs.

Monday, October 6, 2008

One-A-Day Women's Wake-Up Call

During September and October, the "One A Day Women's Wake-Up Call" program offers everyone the opportunity to go to the One A Day Web site at and register to have a free personalized phone call from Ellen DeGeneres sent to their friends and loved ones to advise them about the simple things they can do to help support their own breast health.
The goal of the program is to reach as many women as possible by the end of October. In addition, One A Day will make a donation to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation® to help fund innovative clinical research and also increase public awareness about the importance of doing simple things to support good breast health.