Hands-on-Prints: Montessori Inspired Book Review + Giveaway!

I participated in an Influencer Activation on behalf of Influence Central for Hands-on-Prints books.  I received books to facilitate my review.  #HandsOnPrints

Hands-on-Prints Books are beautiful and educational books written in the Montessori tradition for young readers to tweens.

Ever night at 7:30 pm like clock work I sit down with my children and read them two stories before bedtime.

Over the past week, we have had the enjoyment of reading five intriguing books by Author Christina Cheung.  With a Masters in Early Childhood Education, Christinia Cheung wrote the Hands-on-Prints book series after establishing a Montessori school that celebrates differences in personality, learning preferences and cultural backgrounds.  Our two favorite books in the Hands-On-Prints series are Do I have to? What if I don’t want to and Around the World from A to Z.

Do I have to? What if I don’t want to is a tale of young lad who has difficulty expressing his feelings when he is upset, mad or frustrated.   He does not have the proper tools to express his angst with his parents.  So instead of using words, he resolves to crying, spitting, screaming, begging, and slamming the door.

Hands-on-Prints Books are beautiful and educational books written in the Montessori tradition for young readers to tweens.

The purpose of Do I have to? What if I don’t want to is provide parents with specific tools for teaching their children how to manage their emotions.  While reading together and through a series of questions and answers, parents and children learn new ways to express themselves appropriately.  My favorite part of the book is when the young lad says “And I can ask for help with my feelings”.   Teaching a child to ask for help when things are difficult is an essential life skill.

Hands-on-Prints Books are beautiful and educational books written in the Montessori tradition for young readers to tweens.

With the rise of children’s neurological disorders (autism, ADHD, etc.) in our society, Do I have to? What if I don’t want to is sure to become a classic manual on to how regulate children’s emotions for parents.  I know I found it very helpful in discussing this very important topic with my own children.

Do I have to? What if I don’t want to also comes with a handy pull out guide for adults called Listening – at a glance.

Hands-on-Prints Books are beautiful and educational books written in the Montessori tradition for young readers to tweens.

Our other favorite book in the Hands-on-Prints series is Around the World from A to Z.

Hands-on-Prints Books are beautiful and educational books written in the Montessori tradition for young readers to tweens.

If I could summarize this book in one word it would be “beautiful”!  From the whimsical pictures of historical landmarks to the Montessori alphabet, the entire book is written to perfection.

Hands-on-Prints Books are beautiful and educational books written in the Montessori tradition for young readers to tweens.

Every historical landmark and activity talked about in Around the World from A to Z is paired with a beautiful Montessori letter.  If you are familiar with Montessori education, then you have probably seen the ‘real’ Montessori Moveable Alphabet.  There are variations in font (some cursive, some print) and in color (some pink & blue, others red & blue).  Christinia Cheung chose to use red cursive letters in the book.

Hands-on-Prints Books are beautiful and educational books written in the Montessori tradition for young readers to tweens.

Around the World from A to Z gives children the greatest sensory experience possible; they hear the sound and then feel the shape of the letter with their fingers.  Field Trip especially enjoyed tracing the letters as I read her the story.

Hands-on-Prints Books are beautiful and educational books written in the Montessori tradition for young readers to tweens.

Hands-on-Prints Books are beautiful and educational books written in the Montessori tradition for young readers to tweens.

After introducing Field Trip Girl to the Hands-on Prints book series, I caught her reading the books to herself on many other occasions.  Nothing makes me happier than seeing her read!

Hands-on-Prints Books are beautiful and educational books written in the Montessori tradition for young readers to tweens.

Other books in the Hands-on-Prints series include Nuts for Coconuts, The Chartres Cathedral, The Persistent Vine.  All of these books share a similar theme of consciousness and mindfulness, while educating and inspiring children to read more often.

Hands-on-Prints Books are beautiful and educational books written in the Montessori tradition for young readers to tweens.

I encourage you to check out the entire line of Hands-on-Prints books for your children too!

Now for a fun giveaway!  Enter to win one (1) copy of Around the World from A to Z from Hands-on-Prints!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Rules: US Residents Only.  No purchase necessary to enter.   One winner will be randomly selected via RaffleCopter and notified via email.  Winner must respond within 48 hours to claim the prize or a new winner will be chosen via RaffleCopter.  The prize package will be fulfilled by the sponsor and arrive within 4 weeks after being selected.  

Happy Summer Reading!

Jilleen

Get Discount Tickets to Hello Kitty’s Supercute Friendship Festival in LA on June 12-14

Get discount tickets to Hello Kitty's Supercute Friendship Festival at the Forum in Inglewood on June 12-14, 2015. Tickets start as low as $40 per person.  Children 2 and under are free.

This post contains an affiliate link.

Last fall, I had the pleasure of attending the first ever Hello Kitty Convention in Los Angeles!  I also had the opportunity to visit the Hello! Exploring the Supercute World of Hello Kitty Exhibition at the Japanese American National Museum while in the area.  It was fascinating!

So…imagine how excited I was to learn that there is another Hello Kitty fanfare event coming to Los Angeles called the Hello Kitty’s Supercute Friendship Festival on June 12 -14!

For the first time in North America, Hello Kitty and her supercute friends My Melody, Badtz-Maru, Keroppi, Chococat, Dear Daniel and Pompom Purin will appear in this unique celebration of fun, friendship and Sanrio surprises at the Forum.

Going beyond a traditional live stage show, the event will offer a unique multi-component, walk around family-friendly festival atmosphere for Sanrio fans of all ages!

Get discount tickets to Hello Kitty's Supercute Friendship Festival at the Forum in Inglewood on June 12-14, 2015. Tickets start as low as $40 per person.  Children 2 and under are free.

You’ll see Hello Kitty and her friends in multi-stage live performances and DJ-driven dance sequences, plus there will be interactive exhibits, animation, art, fashion, photo opportunities, event-exclusive collectibles and much more, all in an immersive festival environment.

Tickets to the Hello Kitty’s Supercute Friendship Festival at the Forum start at $40 per person (+ a small service fee) on Goldstar.com!  Plus you’ll receive a $10 Goldstar Gift Certificate for each purchase of 2 or more tickets.

Tickets are available for the following dates:

Friday, June 12 @ 12 pm

Friday, June 12 @ 7 pm

Saturday, June 13 @ 2 pm

Saturday, June 13 @ 7:30 pm

Sunday, June 14 @ 12 pm

Happy Field Tripping and I hope to see you there!

Jilleen

Disclosure: This post is for informational purposes only.  All points of view are my own.  All photos are copyrighted by Hello Kitty’s Supercute Friendship Festival and used by permission.

REVIEW: Billy Beez Entertainment Center at The Anaheim Gardenwalk

Billy Beez Entertainment Center at The Anaheim GardenwalkLast Wednesday, my kids and I had the pleasure of visiting Billy Beez, a new children’s indoor play center located right up the street from Disneyland at The Anaheim Gardenwalk.

Billy Beez is the largest indoor play area I have ever seen!  They have 17,000 square feet of slides, obstacles courses, and fun for children and adults of all ages to explore.  My kids got lost (in a good way!) for over 2 hours amongst all the various play structures and kid-friendly areas.

Billy Beez has a wide selection of play structures including:

Billy’s Rainforest!  Experience our 26,000 square foot Play Arena is the home of wildly twisting slides, a one-of-a-kind Ball Blaster Arena, bouncy trampolines, intricate obstacle courses and so much more!Billy Beez Entertainment Center at The Anaheim Gardenwalk

Billy Beez Entertainment Center at The Anaheim Gardenwalk

Billy Beez Entertainment Center at The Anaheim Gardenwalk

Billy Beez Entertainment Center at The Anaheim GardenwalkRide the winding wave of vibrant colors on the Rainbow Wave Slide!

Billy Beez Entertainment Center at The Anaheim Gardenwalk

Billy Beez Entertainment Center at The Anaheim Gardenwalk

Field Trip Girl joined in on a game of soccer at the Astroturf sports court.  The child sized space features soccer nets and basketball hoops for children all ages.

Billy Beez Entertainment Center at The Anaheim Gardenwalk

Billy Beez Entertainment Center at The Anaheim Gardenwalk

As a mom, I really liked Billy Beez’s pretend city called Honeycomb Village.  Here children can dress up in costumes and pretend to be whatever their little heart’s desire.  It is good practice for the real world and educational too.

Billy Beez Entertainment Center at The Anaheim GardenwalkField Trip Girl decided to be a doctor for the day.

Billy Beez Entertainment Center at The Anaheim GardenwalkChildren can also rid scooters on the weekdays throughout the designated paths within Honeycomb Village.  Field Trip Boy really liked this!

Billy Beez Entertainment Center at The Anaheim GardenwalkField Trip Girl enjoyed taking a ride down their gigantic Blue Slide!

Billy Beez Entertainment Center at The Anaheim GardenwalkBilly Beez also has a very clean and safe Toddler Area for the smallest of guests.

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Billy Beez Entertainment Center at The Anaheim GardenwalkINTRODUCTORY PRICING:

  • $14.95 for Children (5 – 17 yrs. old)
  • $9.95 for Toddlers (0 – 4 yrs. old)
  • FREE for Adults with each paying child, $6.95 for each Adult thereafter

In my opinion, Billy Beez’s admission price is a bit expensive for a family.  However, admission is good for the entire day!

Therefore, I recommend that you take advantage of your visit by grabbing some lunch or dinner at the Anaheim Gardenwalk in between play sessions, and then go back and play some more.  My family could have easily stayed for 4 or more hours!

Billy Beez requires that you bring a pair of socks to play or purchase them there.

PARKING: The first hour of parking is free.  Billy Beez will validate your parking for an additional hour, providing a total of 2 free hours of parking.

LOCATION: Billy Beez is located at the Anaheim GardenWalk, 400 West Disney Way, Suite 189, Anaheim, CA 92802

For more information visit http://www.us.billybeez.com/

Happy Field Tripping!

Jilleen

Disclosure: We were invited to a special event at Billy Beez as a member of the media.  All points of view are my own.

Discount Movie Theaters in Southern California ($1 to $3.50 per person)

Discount Movie Theaters in Southern California ranging in price from $1 to $3.50 per person.

photo credit: Fernando de Sousa

Are you looking for an inexpensive summer activity for your children?  How about taking them to see a movie?

Several movie theaters across Southern California offer summer discount movie clubs for kids.  Children and parents can get in for as low as $1 per person!  While other theaters in the area offer year round discount admission starting at $2 per person.

Here is SoCal Field Trips’ ultimate list of Discount Movie Theaters in Southern California.

CHILDREN’S SUMMER MOVIE CLUBS:

1. Cinemark Theatres Summer Movie Clubhouse (Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, Los Angeles, Ventura and Imperial Counties) – $1 per show / $5 for ten movies

Cinemark hosts a Summer Movie Clubhouse, a ten-week series of kid-friendly films at a discounted price, at over 260 participating Cinemark Theatres across the country.

The program brings some of Hollywood’s recent G and PG favorites to theatres on select mornings at a cost of only $1 per person.  A series punch card is available for $5 and is good for all ten movies, one card per person.   The ten-week punch card is available at the theatres or online as a bundled option at Cinemark.com, while supplies last.

Some of this year’s Summer Movie Clubhouse films include:

  • The Lego Movie
  • Dolphin Tale 2
  • Mr. Peabody and Sherman
  • The Penguins of Madagascar
  • Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked

For a complete list of participating theatres, start dates and showtimes, go to www.cinemark.com and click on the Summer Movie Clubhouse logo on the home page.

2. Regal Cinemas Summer Movie Express (Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, Los Angeles, Ventura and San Diego Counties) – $1 per person

Regal Cinemas will offer select G & PG rated movies for only $1.00 on Tuesday and Wednesday for Regal Summer Movie Express.  Tickets are available for purchase at the box office and all movies start at 10:00 am.  A portion of the proceeds goes to the Will Rogers Institute.

The 9 week festival at participating Regal and United Artists Theaters includes the following movies:

  • Week 1 – Nut Job & Annie
    Week 2 – Earth To Echo & Boxtrolls
  • Week 3 – Paddington & Turbo
  • Week 4 – Rio 2 & How To Train Your Dragon 2
  • Week 5 – Mr. Peabody & Sherman & The Book of Life
  • Week 6 – Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb & Penguins of Madagascar
  • Week 7 – The Lego Movie & Dolphin Tale 2
  • Week 8 – Muppets Most Wanted & Alexander and the Very Bad Day
  • Week 9 – Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles & The SpongeBob Movie

The summer movies at Regal are limited to kids and their parents.  Seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis.

3. Regency Theatres Kid’s Summer Movie Series (Santa Paula, Ventura, Camarillo, Thousand Oaks, and Agoura Hills)  $1 per person

Regency Theatres offers a Kid’s Summer Movie Series on Tuesdays and Thursday in July and August.  Doors open at 9:45 am.  All shows start at 10:30 am.  Tickets go on sale on April 1st.  Face painting is offered at each show for only $1.  Snack trays are offered for $3 and come with popcorn, candy and a drink.

The movies to be shown this summer include:

  • Kung Fu Panda
  • Bee Movie
  • Flushed Away
  • Despicable Me
  • Shrek
  • Megamind
  • Madagascar
  • How To Train Your Dragon
  • Monsters vs. Aliens

Visit Regency Theatre’s website for exact dates and times.

LOS ANGELES COUNTY:

1. Regency Theatre Norwalk 8 (Norwalk) $2 per person

Matinees starting before 6:00 pm costs $2 per person.  All other times admission is $3.

2. Regency Theatre Valley Plaza 6 (North Hollywood) – $1.50 on Tuesday/Sunday

On Tuesday & Sunday admission is only $1.50 all day for everyone.  At all other times it is $3 per person.

3. Regency Theatre Academy Cinemas (Pasadena) – $2 per person

Matinees starting before 6:00 pm costs $2 per person.  All other times admission is $3.

ORANGE COUNTY:

1. Woodbridge 5 (Irvine) – $2 per person

Starplex Cinemas Discount Theaters offer the best for less! Enjoy premium cinema at an affordable price, along with our delicious and refreshing concessions!  $2 Matinee before 6pm, $3 General Admission after 6pm and 3D films are $4 all day.

2. La Mirada Movies 7 (La Mirada) – $2 per person

Starplex Cinemas Discount Theaters offer the best for less! Enjoy premium cinema at an affordable price, along with our delicious and refreshing concessions!  $2 Matinee before 6pm, $3 General Admission after 6pm and 3D films are $4 all day.

3. Brea Plaza 5 Cinemas (Brea) – $3 per person

Brea Plaza 5 Cinemas plays older films, but gives the experience of being in a theater.  The Tristone Cinemas matinee pricing is $3 and regular pricing is $3.75.

4. Picture Show at Main Place (Santa Ana) – $1 on Tuesdays

For only $2, you get regular admission and it’s only $1 for the Tuesday special.  It can get crowded on Tuesdays, so expect a line if you decide to go on that day.  The theater offers 100 percent digital projection and shows 3D films.

5. Regency Theatre Charter Centre Cinemas (Huntington Beach) $3 per person

All movies are $3 per person year round.

RIVERSIDE COUNTY:

Regency Theatre Towngate 8 (Moreno Valley) – $2.50 per person

Matinees starting before 6:00 pm costs $2.50 per person.  All other times admission is $3.

VENTURA COUNTY:

Simi Valley 10 Cinemas (Simi Valley) – $3.50 per person

The Simi Valley 10 offers current and classic films at a discount rate and is a favorite among discount moviegoers.  Matinee shows cost $3.50 per person.

Do you know of a discount movie theater in your city that is not included on this list?  Please let us know and we will be happy to add it!

Happy Field Tripping,

Jilleen

Disclosure: This post is for informational purposes only.  All points of view are my own.

Visit The New LEGO Friends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

Visit the new LEGO Friends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

On Thursday, we were invited by LEGOLAND California to experience a new area of the park called Heartlake City!

Heartlake City is based on one of the LEGO Group’s hottest toy lines “LEGO Friends”, which focuses on the lives and personalities of five girls: Mia, Olivia, Andrea, Stephanie and Emma.

Field Trip Girl has been a fan of LEGO Friends for some time now, so this invitation was right up her alley!

Heartlake City encouraged us to sing along with Andrea at her tour bus, stroll through LEGO horse stables, take part in a building activity at one of the LEGO brick tables, go for a horseback ride on the Park’s first carousel and cool off by splashing around in the fountain.

The adventures were endless as we enjoyed living like a LEGO Friend for a day!

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND, California!

Our first stop in Heartlake City was a visit to the Heartlake horse stables.  Here Field Trip Girl built her own horse and put it on a vibrating LEGO activity table to gallop around.  It was cute to watch her play and say “giddy-up horsey”!

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND, California!

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

Next Field Trip Girl took a ride on the stable’s picturesque horse.  Make sure to say “cheese” for the professional photographer.  Afterwards you can pick up your photo on the way out of the park.

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

After strolling through the horse stables, we saw LEGO® Friends to The Rescue on the Friends Forever stage.  Children can choose to either sit on the ground or get on top of their parent’s shoulders to see the show.

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

Guests also have opportunity to meet the LEGO friends in between show times.

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

While at the Park, Field Trip Girl really enjoyed taking pictures with some of her favorite LEGO Friend statues.  I can see how there’s a little bit of each LEGO Friend’s personality in her!

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

Field Trip Girl loves to build and create new inventions with her LEGOs.  So does Olivia!  Olivia, the smart one of the group, loves school, books, inventions, her friends, nature and hiking.  With a dream of winning the Nobel Prize, Olivia wants to be an inventor of sorts, archeologist, a high-tech innovator or even a robot maker.

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

With dreams to be a clothing and jewelry designer, Emma loves crafts, interior decorating, remodeling and even horseback jumping!  Emma is also great at giving makeovers and doing yoga and although she is forgetful, she will never leave home with clothes and accessories that don’t match.  Emma needs to come over and play with Field Trip Girl sometime!  The two would be best of friends!

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

Stephanie is quite the social butterfly and enjoys playing soccer for her school’s team at Heartlake High.  Field Trip Girl starts soccer in the fall!  Stephanie also enjoys planning, organizing, talking to people and having fun at parties.  Field Trip Girl has been planning her upcoming birthday party for over a year now!

Heartlake City also has several new LEGO models including lady bugs, rabbits, flowers, carrots, microphones and first place ribbons.

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

This rabbit is made up of 5,000 LEGO bricks!

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

After visiting with the LEGO Friends statues, Field Trip Girl took a ride on the fun carousel in Mia’s Riding Camp.  There are more than 60 horses to choose from!

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

Heartlake City has two new dining options for visitors too:

  • Wok ‘N’ Bowl Ramen – Offers a variety of different food options such as ramen noodles with pork belly or chicken and fresh vegetables, stir fry and an assortment of kids meals.
  • City Park Creperie – Provides guests the perfect solution to satisfy their sweet tooth!  There are four crêpes available: powdered sugar, Nutella, Nutella and bananas and berries.

Our final stop on our journey through Heartlake City was a visit to Heartlake City Boutique!  

It is the best location in the Park for guests to shop for LEGO Friends toys and products.  I found several new LEGO Friends products that I have never seen at my local retailer.  So guess who did some early Christmas shopping?!!

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

Guests can also view the trendy LEGO Friends hot air balloon featured inside the center of the store.

Visit the new LEGOFriends Heartlake City at LEGOLAND California!

For your information, a visit to LEGO Friends Heartlake City is included in the normal price of admission.

To plan your next visit go to http://california.legoland.com/en/LEGOFriends/

Happy Field Tripping!

Jilleen

Disclosure: We were invited as special guests to a LEGOLAND media event to help facilitate this post.  All points of view are my own.