Thursday, February 13, 2020

Sonic the Hedgehog Movie Review: Does Paramount Ring in a Win with Nostalgic Gamer Fans and Gen Z Kids?

Last April we all dang near lost our minds with the original release of the Sonic the Hedgehog movie trailer and sent Paramount animators back to the drawing board well before fans of the popular gaming brand rioted. We applauded the studio for listening to their super fans who championed a redesign and were rewarded with a better suited and Puma laced up CGI animated character that resembled the icon we've all grown up with.  

Back in the day I remember playing endless rounds of the game with my younger sis and brother, trying to skip to my fave levels with cheat codes ( who else had that up, up, down, down, left, right, A, start memorized?) and binge-watching the cartoon series with a bowl of Lucky Charms in hand. Expectations were high and I was excited to share this cinematic experience with my sis and our preschool, tween and teenaged boys who've become lovers of the brand.  

With the Paramount film releasing in theaters this Friday, February the 14th, my two Gen Z kids and I agree a movie night would make for the perfect Valentine's day family date. As long time players of the 30-year-old SEGA franchise, we were visually soothed by the much-needed overhaul and couldn't wait to share our trailer reaction while counting down to the advanced screening we attended this past weekend. 

Friday, February 7, 2020

Review of Paddington Gets in a Jam: Early Lessons of Good Intentions When Moments Get Messy!

For more than 60 years, British-born writer Michael Bond has delighted children and families all over the world with his stories about Paddington. Growing up he was one of my fave storybook bears, alongside Courdoroy and of course Winnie the Pooh and over the years I've loved sharing his sweet tales with my two boys and now my preschool-aged nephew. 

Paddington’s adventures have been adapted many times for the big screen and television, which now includes an adorable new Paddington TV series that recently launched on Nickelodeon and a third feature film is in the works. 

We've always got an eye out for theater experiences that the younger kids will enjoy and thought that the new show and New York Times Critic's Pick, Paddington Gets in a Jam at DR2 theater would be the perfect performance for my sister and I to take the kids to. When the winter months roll around we look forward to trips into the city that get us out of the apartment and give the Lil' monsters a chance to witness engaging storytelling that effortlessly captivates their wildest imaginations.

Disclosure: We were provided with complimentary tickets in order to facilitate this review, opinions expressed are 100% our own. 

Monday, February 3, 2020

10 Restaurants to Celebrate a Birthday with a Group During NYC Restaurant Week

As a lover of good eats and great company, I am always looking forward to when NYC Restaurant Week rolls around. Often I joke that the universe really messed up by giving this foodie, a chronic autoimmune disease because I've always enjoyed a good meal! I'm the furthest from a food critic but I surely love to stuff my face and make recommendations on the best places to dine that will allow you to catch up with your tribe and belly laugh over drinks while you wait for dessert. Whether it's a girls day out in Williamsburg or a meet up with family at the Queens Night Market we're always keeping an eye out for places with cool vibes and a great menu. 

Folks message me all the time asking for suggestions on where to eat with a group of friends, for a family celebration or on a cute triple date-night. With dinner offerings at $42 per person and lunch options at $26, I figured I'd round up my recommendations for restaurants to celebrate a winter birthday while saving a coin during NYC Restaurant Week ! If you don't get to check these eateries out between January 21st and February 9th it's ok bookmark these suggestions because they're honestly great choices all year round. 

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Skip the Resolutions: 3 Ways to Stay True to You and Redefine Wellness in 2020 with Truvia

How is it already the last week of January? I'll be honest I just cracked open the new planner I just swore I needed from Target to get me into the swing of the new year, and the boys and I haven't had the chance to create the family vison board we've been talking about making to manifest our goals yet. And that's all going to have to be ok! It's a brand new decade and where the hubby and I haven't made any actual resolutions for 2020, we are looking forward to making some positive lifestyle changes for ourselves and our boys.

Do you find yourself in search of that sweet spot between the pressures of parenting and your own personal wellness, and if you've managed to find it do you mind letting the rest of us in on your secret? This New Year, more than 60% of women around the country say they’re throwing conventional thinking out the door by choosing not to make a resolution, according to a Truvia® sweetener survey.

Let's be honest, how many times have you made a resolution and then felt horrible about not sticking to it by the time Springtime rolls around? As busy parents know, keeping up a regular health and wellness routine is seemingly impossible, but a new survey reveals that we may be doing it right after all without even thinking about it.

 Earlier this month Truvia® introduced the Tru To You: Real Life Wellness pop-up in New York City where the brand reimagined the ultimate symbol of resolution season – the gym. Over the weekend visitors experienced everything from work-life balance-inspired yoga to a Smooth(ie) Operator station featuring blended, reduced-sugar treats.

Monday, January 6, 2020

Immerse Yourself in the World of Dolittle: Imaginative Play and Adventure at the New CAMP Store

Look at that, the first full weekend of the New Year is behind us already! To celebrate the Dolittle movie coming to theaters on January 17th, this Saturday we were invited to immerse ourselves in a day of family fun at the new CAMP location at Hudson Yards. Despite it being an early morning, rainy day event we knew it was going to be a cool experience for my tween Tristan and my threenager nephew Q. 

We made our way downtown to 30 Hudson yards for a fun Dolittle-inspired day of crafting, balloon animals, singalongs and family photos.  PLUS we'd get to enjoy all the interactive fun CAMP has to offer! The boys and I had been to the amazing 5th avenue location twice so we knew we were in store for a good time surrounding the new adventure-comedy from Universal Pictures. 

Reel Families Watch: Must See Animated Movies Releasing in 2020

Are you looking forward to the new slate of family-friendly, animated movies coming to theaters and a couch near you in 2020? 2019 truly outdid itself, in good ways and bad and after watching underdog stop-motion/CGI movie Missing Link win the Golden Globe last night for Best Animated Film, we can't wait to see what's coming this year. 

There's a bunch of flicks giving new, shiny CGI life to favorite throwback characters that are over two decades old, plenty of origin stories, sequels, and some really exciting fantasy-based originals! Plus they are jam-packed with tons of your fave mega-talented (voice) actors. Surely there will be a movie out there to appeal to everyone's sense of humor (we should plan to laugh hard) or to tug at your heartstrings (we may cry even harder) or will have you raise an eyebrow in confusion. 

Movie watching has always been the ultimate way for us to spend time together as a family, with a teen, tween and threenager we have some really hysterical conversations and heated debates surrounding films we've seen. Get ready to mark your calendars, here's our list of upcoming highly-anticipated animated movies releasing in 2020. Stay tuned as we update the lineup with new choices and our latest trailer reaction videos

Friday, December 20, 2019

Geeking Out During our Exclusive Tour of Blue Sky Studios Plus a Q&A with Spies in Disguise Directors Troy Quane and Nick Bruno

Disclosure: We were invited to attend a media day at Blue Sky Studios in anticipation of the release of Spies in Disguise in theaters.

Blue Sky Studios is infamous for some of the most memorable movie-watching moments that we've had as a family and I'm sure you can relate. From insanely popular classics like Ice Age and Rio to newer titles like Horton Hears a Who, The Peanuts Movie, Ferdinand and the upcoming Spies in Disguise, we've been fans of Blue Sky Studios's innovative animation and storytelling style for over a decade.  

Were anyone else's kids completely obsessed with the opening musical sequence from the colorfully animated movie Rio like our two boys were? I'm telling you we played those first few minutes repeatedly while they danced around flapping their arms like crazed tropical birds in the Amazon. Watching them squawking and singing along have made for some adorable memories. You'd think that one catchy song was the entire full-length movie and don't get me started on the hilarious antics of Scrat from the Ice Age franchise! Poor thing can't ever catch a break and he gets a good laugh out of kids of all ages.

As you can imagine, the hubby and I completely geeked out over the opportunity to head to Connecticut to tour Blue Sky Studios. During the exclusive media tour, we'd get a first glimpse at some behind the scenes footage and art before chatting it up with the movie makers and debuting Directors Troy Quane and Nick Bruno over their new comedy adventure film Spies in Disguise which stars actors Will Smith and Tom Holland and hits theaters on Christmas Day.


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