Karson’s 7th Birthday Reptile Party

My sonny Karson, the most simple of the 3. He never asks for much, and for the past years has been content with mini birthday celebrations. It’s always been instilled in me from my mom and other family members to always celebrate “milestone” birthdays with a bang. I think every year is a milestone, but I guess with Filipinos, there are certain years that are considered to be extra special as far as celebrating goes. Turning 7 is one of those milestone years.

Upon planning this party, I wanted a theme that well described what Karson’s into lately. Again, he is so simple, so this wasn’t very hard at all. In fact, it’s something he’s been into since he was even younger. He loves anything gross like bugs and reptiles lol. Once I asked him if this was okay, he was so blown away with the thought of actually having a party with that theme. I gave myself at least a month in advanced to plan, although I knew then that I wanted it simple, yet special. Being a nursing student mom, it had to be realistic to my current capabilities as far as free time goes.

I found theeee perfect invitation from Etsy. I pretty much used this specific invite as a base to what and how I would be decorating his dessert table. I say dessert table because honestly, that was all I decorated along with his favor boxes. Pinterest was a great sidekick in helping me put this icky theme together. Each time I was complimented on the snap or IG stories when I’d post about my prep for this party, I always made sure to mention that I did excerpt these ideas from pinterest.

This was the easiest birthday party I’ve thrown for one of my kids at home because we did not cook anything for it, nor did we order any foods that would have gone to waste. We also did not over cater, as the food amount was just enough and a little more. We let Karson pick the menu to be served, so of course Pizza was on the list among Spam Musubis, Manapua (siopao), and Cane’s Chicken fingers.

Of course with all the simplicity going around, there was one thing we did splurge on. We hired a company who brought some animals and reptiles over for a one hour show. It was hard getting past the thought of snakes in my backyard, but the excitement and thrill in my son’s face made it all worth it. Here are some photos of the party. Please subscribe to IJKfamTV on YouTube for the upcoming vlog clip.

National Donut Day at Dunkin Donuts

Hi friends! It’s almost that time of year again. That one time when you feel less guilty about having donuts. Who am I kidding, I have donuts quite a few times a year?! Especially since nursing school means having to pick up some coffee from Dunkin’ Donuts every now and then. Of course, donuts and coffee just go hand in hand.

I’ve also realized since starting school in January, my classmates have been bringing in boxes of Dunkin’ Donuts on rotation because it’s always someone’s birthday we are celebrating. So bad, yet so good. It’s probably another excuse for us to eat our stressors away.

This Friday, June 2nd, is National Donut Day 2017. Dunkin’ Donuts in Las Vegas has a free donut deal that day. You get a free donut with your purchase of any beverage. This includes any of their iced coffees and other drinks they have to offer. Remember, coffee and donuts just go hand in hand?!

Dunkin’ Donuts is now serving their new Frozen Dunkin’ Coffee. Have a favorite coffee or iced coffee? Try it blended. Ask for a free sample between 10am – 2pm. 

Also, now until September 30th, Dunkin’ Donut’s medium Iced coffees will only be $1.49. What a steal?! Especially for nursing students like me who needs to squeeze in as many gourmet coffees they can in a week without breaking the bank. 

Enjoy your Summer with Dunkin’ Donuts! 
This post has been sponsored by Dunkin Donuts. 

Nursing School

I really don’t have the time to even be writing this blog. Luckily, I have an app where I can just do this as I am laying in bed, and at the tip of my fingertips, write this blog. What I should be doing: begin my 2 chapters of reading for the weekend, study, or catch up on some much needed sleep. Instead, I decided to vent my nursing school frustrations, accomplishments, goals, hardships, journey, etc. Starting with this, where I am letting you guys know that I did begin an accelerated nursing program.

This is something I started at age 18. I first went to nursing school in North Hollywood, Ca, where I got to live with my best friend. We both went to the same college, carpooled, studied together, graduated the Vocational Nursing program together. That was quite the journey and probably one of the most fun memorable moments of that stage in my life. 

The ultimate goal since then was to eventually get my RN. Our hometown, Santa Maria, required LVN as a pre-requisite to the college’s RN program, so I thought getting my LVN at a private school first would allow me to work as a nurse while I finish my nursing degree. Obvi, if you know me personally or follow us on social media, then you’ll know I’ve been a SAHM for the past 7 years. 

Along the way, we started our fab five family. I got to work as a nurse at skilled nursing facilities while taking classes here and there. In 2010, we moved to Vegas, where my SAHM status first took its bout. 

So…. here we are. 2017. The year I felt was right for me to go back to school. Last summer, I thought long and hard about whether going back to school or back to work was best for me. If I went back to work as an LPN (LVN), I was faced with a couple challenges. First, I would have had to take a refresher course to renew my license. This includes clinical hours. Second, I would be so limited to where I could apply and get hired. With 7 years of not practicing, it was pretty scary thinking about how bad my resumé would look.

Going back to school to finally pursue my RN was the better choice for me. I have a great support system amongst my hubby, kids, parents and in laws. Everyone is able to pitch in with helping us with school pick-up and drop-off for the kids, and watching Kaleah while I’m at school. Thankful and blessed to be able to do this with the full moral, physical and financial  support of my husband. 

Deciding on which school was best fitting for me was a pretty lengthy process of researching and weighing things out. I decided to go the private school route again. Took the entrance test, passed the first try, essay and interview process, then accepted in time for the January 2017 cohort.

Here I am, 2 months in on the program. As my countdown says, 96 weeks until graduation. 

Legoland Brick Or Treat

Only 2 more nights of Legoland’s Brick or Treat event. Saturday, October 22nd and Saturday, October 29th, 2016. For only $35-40 for event tickets, it’s pretty exciting! That’s a great price. Tickets

If you know me personally, or follow our YouTube, you know we love Disney! But let’s just keep it real…. their Mickey’s Halloween Party is asspensive. Albeit, it is a great event as well, we just can’t shell out that extra cash yearly on top of our annual passes and travel budget. 

For a similar experience, with their very own unique style, we want to attend Brick or Treat this year. My kids are absolute LEGOLAND fanatics already, why not change it up this year?! 

The tickets to the events are separate from daily admission. It’d make a great addition if you will already be there during the day on those days. If you want to attend just the Brick or Treat event, the price is perfect for evening fun. There will be treat stations for trick or treating, music, and various Halloween activities throughout the park.

Now, we just have to figure out what we want to dress up as. We may do a family theme, or a couple themes as we have done in the past. Either way, we are excited!!

Grocery Shop Online

Kroger’s chain Smith’s Food and Drug grocery store has started their Click List program. As of now, only one Smith’s location in Las Vegas is participating, but I am hopeful for many more in the near future.

Smith’s Paradise Marketplace

3850 E Flamingo Rd 

Las Vegas NV 89121

Click List is basically a way to do your grocery shopping online in the comfort of your own home. This is great for us busy people, whether you are a SAHM mom, working mom, a busy student, or what ever your status may be. Just as human beings in general, we are always on the hustle and bustle. Grocery shopping is something that has to be done, but isn’t it great to be able to cut down the time on doing so?! 
You must place our grocery order online at Smith’s website (http://smithsfoodanddrug.com/clicklist)before the midnight on the night before you plan to pick up. The initial registration process is easy. Log in, and begin your shopping. Just as if you walked into your local grocery store, everything is organized by category. Like any online shopping that you do, you simply just add what you want in your cart. Upon check out, you will be given the option to pick the one hour time frame you want to pick up the next day.

15 minutes before my pick up window time, I received a phone call from Smith’s letting me know my order was ready. Since Paradise Marketplace is 20 miles away from me, it took about 25 minutes to arrive. I was hoping for the email they sent me to work as it should. 

It’s an interactive email, which should have been highlighting the steps. An hour to about 12pm (my pick up time is 12-1pm), my email still only highlighted Order Received. I did receive the phone call so I figured that would highlight Order Assembly. 

Once we got to Smith’s, we found the Click List parking section. Simple instructions were followed as listed where we parked. It took a few minutes, then a couple people came out with our groceries. 

I can get used to the convenience of this service, I thought as they approached our car. One person took care of the transaction while the other loaded our car with our groceries. Credit and debit are the only payments they accept and tipping is not required, but they did an awesome job, we went ahead and took care of them. 

Our transaction went smoothly. We only had one product that needed substitution. Once we got home and had a chance to put everything away, I only realized a couple mistakes. One was my order of Cilantro was missing but I got Parsley instead. Another was my order for 3 boxes of Chocolate milk by Horizon, I only got one. 

Overall, our experience with Smith’s Click List was great. We’d definitely like to use this service again soon. I am hoping for more Smith’s location in Vegas to participate as well. 

Pokémon Go at Legoland CA

The craze is here! My kids have been waiting for PokémonGo to become available. The moment arrived and since then they’ve been wanting to go out to hunt for Pokémon. Sure, we could go out to a park or the grocery store to catch them, but I feel like the distance between one Pokémon to an another is pretty far. Guess where we’re going this weekend to catch some? LEGOLAND!!!!

Yes, Legoland in California consists of over 40 PokéStops! As exciting as it sounds, I’m really kind of nervous about the thought of my kids wanting to hunt Pokémon down instead of getting on rides HAHA. Either way, it’s going to be a good time.

To all my Pokémon trainers, you gotta catch ’em all at Legoland in Carlsbad, California!

Baskin-Robbins Polar Pizza

It is National Ice Cream month. What better way to celebrate than to enjoy some ice cream for dessert? Baskin-Robbins is located somewhere near you, and it is always a great place for a wide variety of desserts that are Ice Cream based. This month, they have released some new items to their menu. For July’s flavors of the month, they’ve added Oreo Birthday Cake which consists of a chocolate ice cream with Oreos and candy bits. Another flavor of the month is Patriot Pop which is a blue, white and red sorbet in the flavors blue raspberry, lemon and cherry. This one is my kids personal favorite.

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Summer 2016 Hair: Balayage Ombré

Getting my hair done nowadays is such a treat. Especially now that I have found THEE hairstylist that I can trust and would love to go to forever. If you guys have not already heard of him, take a break from here, open your Instagram and search: @jayrua_glam. Just take a quick browse and make sure to come back.

Yesss, girl, yes! (p.s. we’re in Las Vegas)

I’ve been seeing Jay since the Spring of 2015, and this last visit was my 3rd time in his hot seat. I call it a hot seat because he is in such high demand. Since last November 2015, he stopped seeing new clients because he was steadily booked months ahead. But have no fear — he has taught all of his stylists that works in his salon. They all do great work. Take another pause, open Instagram and search: @jayrua_glamhairsalon.

Right? All bomb work. Continue reading

Legoland’s Nexo Knights: the Book of Creativity

Legoland California has a brand new 4D movie experience. It is Lego’s Nexo Knights: the Book of Creativity. 

If you’ve never experienced a 4D movie at Legoland, this movie will be a great one for the whole family to enjoy. Everyone gets a pair of comfortable 4D glasses and a stadium style seating room w/ a large monitor at front. 

Special effects can take place such as mists and some water squirts here and there. Along with the 4D feature, it can feel pretty realistic with the special effects. This makes the experience well worth it.
My kids have loved previous 4D movies at the park such as Chima and Ninjago features. We are excited to experience the kingdom of Knighton in 4D, as we join the Nexo Knights in the battle against the evil Jestro and the book of monsters to find the book of creativity. 


Ninjago World Preview at Legoland, CA

Ninjago World opens May 5th, 2016.

On Thursday, April 28th, 2016, we were invited to preview the new Ninjago World at Legoland, Ca. Perfect, as it was TYKTWD (Take your kids to work day). I’m sure they would have loved to shadow their dad at the power plant, but we opted for the “fun” work lol. My kids were so confused Wednesday night as we started heading toward California right after school. Planning this mini trip a week in advanced, surprisingly, I kept my mouth shut. I hate keeping surprises as much as receiving them. My kids are the same way. If they knew we had something cooking, they would have been bugging for us to slip.

As the kids began to worry at the same time become excited, they’d question what was going on. We finally told them we had a surprise for them. Being Disneyland pass holders, they started saying amongst each other, “I bet we’re going to Disneyland.”

Side note: My boys (ages 5 and 10) have been Ninjago fans since it first came out. Starting with my eldest who then influenced his little brother. We went through a whole Ninjago phase where my house and kids literally bled Ninjago. From the clothing, TV Shows on repeat as well as the soundtrack, Legos and toys, imaginary play, bedroom and birthday themes as well. They were pretty much obsessed with Ninjago. They know all the stories from the beginning to the latest episode.

NINJAGO KV (NEW) Continue reading