Attention Football Parents – Riddell Smarter Football Grant Info

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This is a sponsored post for SheSpeaks/Riddell.

Those of you who have been reading my blog for a while know that I love football. I look forward to football season every year and count down the days until it starts. I love watching my favorite Chicago team play it, cheering for the Buckeyes in college football games, and, of course, watching my own son play it.

I’ll never forget the very first year that Jacob played football. When we picked up his gear I remember thinking how tiny he looked in it but I knew that this gear was essential in keeping him safe on the football field which is the most important thing to me as a sports parent.

It’s clear that the game of football is no longer about being the fastest or strongest on the field; but about being the smartest, so I’m thrilled to be partnering with Riddell, a brand that believes in the importance of safety and smarter football. Smarter football means safe tackling, proper nutrition, excellent sportsmanship and maintaining good grades.

Riddell is calling on players, coaches, parents, and fans to take an active role in advancing the game through the Smarter Football Commitment. This initiative invites members of the football community at all levels to join in a movement to create a safer, better sport through the use of “smarter” tactics on and off the field. Riddell believes in this cause so much that they’ve pledged up to $100,000 in equipment grants to select football programs in need of upgraded gear. Multiple grants will be awarded to several deserving programs that best demonstrate how the new product will strengthen their team’s commitment to smarter football. Entries will be accepted through August 31, 2017 with the winners announced during the 2017 football season.

HOW TO APPLY FOR A GRANT: Fans, administrators, coaches, parents, and players can submit their teams via the website at Riddell.com/SmarterFootball through August 31, 2017. To apply, fill out the form to share the details of the football program you are applying for, including the state of their equipment, and how your program practices Smarter Football.

Watch how winning a grant changed things for one team and helped them practice smarter football!

How would your child’s team use this grant if they won?

Easy Ways To Update Your Bathroom For The Big Game

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This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #MegaGame #CollectiveBias

The big game is just around the corner and I’m so excited! Though my favorite team didn’t make it very far this year, I am still looking forward to watching the game in a couple weeks. It’s great to spend time with family while cheering the teams on throughout the game.

One fun way to celebrate the big game is to have a football watch party with family and friends. If you are hosting at your house I’m sure you’ve started preparing for it already- from buying the party decorations to cleaning. One area of the home that’s often overlooked when it comes to party planning is the bathroom. You probably clean it but do you do anything else?

This month I chose to do a few simple updates to add a bit of football spirit to our guest bathroom. The first, and most important addition, was making sure that we had enough toilet paper and that it was readily available to guests. The only thing worse than running out of toilet paper while you are a guest in someone’s home is not being able to find another roll after you run out. I like to keep toilet paper readily available so my guests aren’t put in that awkward situation!

I found a great deal on Quilted Northern Ultra Soft & Strong® Mega Rolls and Quilted Northern Ultra Plush® Mega Rolls at my local Target. Not only did I get a $5 Target gift card when I purchased two packs but there is also a Cartwheel offer for 10% off as well. I like the Quilted Northern Mega Rolls because they are 4 regular rolls in one which means they last longer so you can change the roll less often during the big game.

To store the extra toilet paper so it was accessible to my guests, I decorated a basket with ribbon and set it out on the bathroom counter. Your house will be full of people celebrating, and you want to keep your guest space perfect and put together. This basket will help you do that! It was easy to make and I’m including the simple instructions for you to put this DIY decorated basket together in just minutes!

Materials:

  • Basket big enough to fit at least a couple rolls of toilet paper
  • 1 or 2 ribbons in your choice of colors – you can choose your team’s colors, brown and green for a generic football theme, or even add a cute football ribbon if you have one
  • Glue dots or another adhesive that will hold the ribbon on the basket
  • Scissors to cut the ribbon

Directions:

Measure your ribbon to ensure it’s the length it needs to be to go around the top of your basket and then cut the ribbon

Put your glue dots or adhesive along the top of your basket, adding one dot/spot of adhesive about every inch

Carefully wrap your ribbon around the top of your basket, making sure that you are putting it on straight.

If you have two ribbons you will want to wrap your second ribbon around the basket under the top ribbon.

See how easy that was?! You can just add your toilet paper into the basket and you are all set. If you are using Quilted Northern Mega Rolls you may find that the spare toilet paper basket isn’t even touched throughout the party because they are fuller rolls which means less roll changes. Nobody wants their guest to experience a bath tissue run out but you can enjoy the game knowing that you are all stocked up on this essential.

A few other ways to decorate the bathroom include adding in a football themed hand towel, some football themed trinkets, and adding football shaped stickers to things like clear candles and the soap dispenser.

How would you update your bathroom for the big game? However you choose to do it, avoid a MEGA party fumble by stocking up on Quilted Northern Mega Rolls at Target (found in the bath tissue aisles) so there’s less roll changes which gives you more time to enjoy the game!

To find more Quilted Northern inspiration, check out the social hub here.

Fun Giveaway For Parents Of Little Football Fans

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Disclosure: This is a sponsored post but all thoughts are my own.

Football season is almost over so I’m trying to squeeze in as much football love on this blog as I can. Today I have an amazing giveaway for parents or grandparents who want to share their passion for football with the special child in their life.

Little fans will enjoy being pushed around in this Game Day Helmet Ride-In Car from Simplay3, a new company by the founder of both Little Tikes and Step2. This push around buggy is ideal for children ages 9 months to 3 years. It’s made of thick, durable plastic and features a sturdy, removable handle that provides smooth maneuvering and allows for easy storage and transport.

What I like most about this ride-in car is that it can be customized to show your team spirit. Helmets can be ordered in your favorite team colors (black, gray, white, red/orange, blue) and feature a football decal. They can also be customized with team decals from your favorite high school, NCAA college or NFL professional team. Even though my favorite team didn’t make the playoffs, I’m still a huge Chicago Bears fan so my favorite custom combo is the blue helmet with the Bears logo.

Parents and grandparents will feel safe knowing this has a seat belt for their child and kids will have fun pretending to steer their little vehicle with the built in football shaped toy steering wheel. There is even a cup holder to store your child’s drink or snack so they can have it within arms length.

Want to win one of these fun helmets for the little one in your life? Just leave a comment with what helmet color and team customization you’d choose! For an extra entry you can share this giveaway on social media and leave a 2nd comment with your link to the share.

Giveaway ends on Super Bowl Sunday – February 5, 2017- at 11:59pm CST.

Rules: Entries will be counted from January 23, 2017 to Super Bowl Sunday, February 5, 2017 at 11:59pm CST. The prize is one Game Day Push About Helmet from Simplay3, valued at $79.99 USD. Prize can’t be exchanged for cash value. Entry open to residents of the contiguous United States who are 18 years of age or older as of the start of this giveaway. Winner will be chosen using random.com and will be emailed. Winner will have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen. Prize will be sent to the winner directly from the sponsor of this giveaway. Making Time For Mommy, and the author of this post, are not responsible for any lost or delayed prizes. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning.

 

 

Concession Stand Themed Football Party

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This post is written by me on behalf of Tyson Foods, Inc. All opinions are entirely my own. This shop has been compensated by Acorn Influence, Inc. and its advertiser. #ClubTysonFFL

You all know that I love football parties so I’m really excited to share about an easy one I put together recently. This party comes together in about 30 to 45 minutes from start to finish so it’s perfect for those last minute party guests! I decided to go with a red and white colored concession stand theme and serve mostly foods that could be found at a concession stand.

For food, I served hot dogs, chips, chicken wings, popcorn and soft pretzels. I love “heat & eat” foods because they make life easy!

Tyson® Boneless Wyngz and Ball Park® Franks are ready within minutes so they let me spend less time in the kitchen and more time actually watching the football game with my friends and family.

I found both products, along with all the other food, at Sam’s Club so I saved money on everything, too!

To drink I had cola and water. I also made some chocolate covered strawberries for a sweet treat. I used icing to draw white “laces” on the strawberries so they’d look like footballs.

What are your favorite simple football party foods to serve?

Football Party With A Baked Potato Bar

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This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #AD #Tailgreatness #CollectiveBias

Football season is one of my favorite times of year and it’s a great excuse to get together with friends and family. This year I wanted to plan a party with a baked potato bar because I love party foods that let me enjoy the company and the football game instead of being stuck in the kitchen for hours. Along with the baked potato bar I’m sharing three of my favorite loaded baked potato recipes and information about Nexium® 24HR which provides all-day, all-night protection from frequent heartburn so I can enjoy my favorite baked potato toppings (even the spicy ones!) all season long. Of course, my love of themed parties means I have to share all the party decorating details and three easy, but delicious, dessert ideas!

DECOR

Walmart has a plethora of football tableware and decorations and I chose to do some quick DIY projects as well. I made a colorful banner that says “Go Team” using some green paper and letter cutouts which I hung from string using cute little clothespins.

Silverware holders can be created out of mason jars with a piece of ribbon wrapped around the top and football shaped confetti at the bottom of the jar. I also made labels for all of the bowls on the table from little wood place settings by adding a football sticker and writing the names of the food on them. BAKED POTATO BAR

I love a good baked potato with the typical butter, cheese, sour cream and bacon toppings but there are so many other delicious toppings out there, too. I set out a variety of choices that would appeal to a number of diets, from vegetarian to meat lovers.

I also included options for every palate- from mild to spicy. I bought condiment bottles so I could offer a variety of sauces including hot sauce, barbecue sauce, ranch dressing and buffalo sauce.



Speaking of spicy…do you avoid spicy foods because they give you heartburn? I used to avoid a number of heartburn inducing foods, knowing that as soon as I laid down I’d be regretting my dinner choices, but now I don’t have to anymore! Just one pill a day and you can get all-day, all-night protection from frequent heartburn with Nexium® 24HR* (*Use as directed. *May take 1-4 days for full effect.)

So now that you aren’t worried about heartburn, I wanted to share three of my favorite baked potato topping combos.

Buffalo Chicken Baked Potato Ingredients:

  • Baked Potato
  • Chicken
  • Buffalo Sauce
  • Blue Cheese Dressing
  • Blue Cheese

Mix your chicken and buffalo sauce together. The more sauce you use the wetter and tangier the potato will be. Once done, cut your potato open and add in the chicken and blue cheese then drizzle with more buffalo sauce and blue cheese dressing.

BBQ Pork Baked Potato Ingredients

  • Baked Potato
  • BBQ Pulled Pork
  • Shredded Cheddar Cheese
  • BBQ Sauce
  • Fried Onions

This baked potato is really easy to make! Slice the baked potato and then put the pulled pork inside. Sprinkle cheese on top and fried onions and then drizzle barbecue sauce on top of your baked potato.

Chili & Cheese Baked Potato Ingredients:

  • Baked Potato
  • Chili
  • Shredded Cheese (or Cheese Sauce)
  • Corn Chips
  • Green Onions
  • Sour Cream

If your fall go-to meal is chili you’ll love this chili topped baked potato. Just add your favorite chili and top it with shredded cheese, green onions, sour cream and corn chips.

SNACKS, DESSERTS & DRINKS

No party is complete without appetizers and desserts! I found cute popcorn containers that had a football design and put popcorn, corn chips and tortilla chips in them. I also used a football serving dish for the dips and set out salsa, cheese sauce and guacamole.

For dessert I made a few different treats with store bought bakery items. To keep with the football theme I used a football shaped cookie cutter to cut football shapes out of brownies and then I used white icing to draw “laces” on them.

I used the excess brownie pieces to make trifles by layering brownies, chocolate pudding and whipped cream in cups and then topping them with green hard candy sprinkles. Since my kids love cupcakes I got some of those and put them in football cupcake wrappers and added brown and green chocolate candies to the top of them.

To drink I offered two options- water and root beer. I tied a festive straw on to the bottles with football themed ribbon.

So now that you are prepared for a football party with decorations and food, don’t forget to take Nexium® 24HR daily for all-day, all-night protection from frequent heartburn so you can enjoy the party and all the football fun!

Nexium® 24HR is the #1 Choice of Doctors and Pharmacists* for their own frequent heartburn. (*Among PCPs and Pharmacists who use a branded OTC PPI) You can find 42 count packages of tablets or capsules at your local Walmart store by the other over the counter medications. Each box has 3 smaller bottles inside with 14 days worth of capsules/tablets.

What foods would you serve at your football party? Whatever you choose, don’t get sidelined by frequent heartburn! Make sure to get ready for tailgreatness and take your Nexium® 24HR daily to ensure you can enjoy all of your favorite party foods.

*May take 1 to 4 days for full effect. Use as directed.

Football Decorations Kids Can Help Make

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Thanks to Tampico for sponsoring our afternoon of crafting decorations for football season!

I absolutely love football season. Whether it’s tossing the ball around with my kids, watching Jacob on the field or sitting around the tv on Sunday afternoons cheering for my favorite team from Chicago, it’s a wonderful time of year. Jacob and I did some crafting to get ready for football season and I thought I’d share some of the decorations we made for the house.

The first thing we did was decorate some snack bowls with football themed stickers. We did this to prepare for our various football parties we are going to have this year and because snacks are always better from fun bowls!

Of course we had to have a snack while we were crafting! Popcorn and Mango Punch Tampico were a great combo!

After our snack we decorated some picture frames. Since Jacob plays football we will use these to display pictures of him on the fridge.

For this craft all you need are some colorful cardboard frames and foam stickers.

Once you decorate the frames with the stickers you can add a magnet on the back so that you can hang your picture frame on the fridge. You can then put a picture underneath the frame- either one of your child in their sports uniform or one of your family at your favorite team’s game.

I decided to make a frame as well and decorate it with some scrapbook stickers. I made Jacob one that said “Football MVP”! I love spending quality time with my kids while we craft.

The last thing we made was a paper chain garland. I found some sparkly glitter paper garland pieces that were pre-cut into strips but you can easily cut strips of paper to make some. On the brown colored paper just use a white crayon to draw on some football “laces”. You’ll then use tape to form loops and make a chain.

Once your chain is complete you can hang it anywhere you’d like! We are going to hang our chain garland from our mantle under the television. It’s the perfect decoration because it mixes colors of Autumn with our love of football.

What crafts does your family make together to celebrate your favorite sports season? When you are at the store buying your supplies for your crafts make sure to pick up Tampico juice drink for your family to enjoy while you are creating memories together!

Tips To Prepare For Your Child’s Fall Sports Season

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Disclosure: I’m proud to partner with MinuteClinic as part of their Back to School #GoBackHealthy campaign. As part of my involvement, I have received sponsorship from MinuteClinic for my posts and activities, but all opinions expressed are purely my own.

The end of August means back-to-school season and also the beginning of the fall sports season! The boys start school Thursday and Jacob just had his first football game this afternoon. If you have a child playing sports this fall, read on for tips on how to prepare for the season!

First, find a sport that fits your child. I wrote about this recently when I shared about enrolling Lucas in gymnastics. It took us a while to find a sport he enjoyed, and we had to try numerous other ones that weren’t a good fit, before he discovered his love of gymnastics.

Once you find a sport (or sports) your child wants to try, it’s important that they get a sports physical to make sure they are healthy enough to do the activity. Many fall sports, including football and soccer, are extremely physically demanding and it’s essential that they are given the okay to participate by a doctor. Even if your state or school doesn’t require it, sports physicals are still good to do because they also help to keep immunizations up to date and provide an opportunity to discuss any concerns you may have. (Remember though that the sports physical doesn’t replace a child’s annual wellness physical with their doctor.) MinuteClinic, the walk-in medical clinic inside select CVS pharmacy and Target stores, offers sports physicals every day with no appointment needed for patients 18 months and older. They can even stamp any paperwork your school or league may require.

After getting the okay to participate it’s time to get everything your child needs to participate in the sport. Most leagues should have a list of what you need to purchase and what they will provide. If you have questions about things you can search online or ask your mom friends who have been there, done that! I remember when Jacob first started sports, I had to google the difference between baseball cleats and football cleats because I had no clue which ones were the right ones I needed to buy.

Along with the sports equipment there are a variety of other things you’ll want to keep in your car during sports season. Things like blankets (it gets cold out there in the evenings) and extra equipment (Jake’s football mouth guard always seem to go missing at least once a season) are important to have on hand. You’ll also want to pack snacks and provide plenty of fluid for your child so they stay hydrated.

What tips do you have for preparing for fall sports season? If you need to get your child a sports physical they are currently offering $10 off at MinuteClinic. Their walk-in-clinic is ideal for busy moms because you can get in and out quickly any day that is convenient for you.

While you are there you can also get a variety of other services including your child’s back-to-school vaccinations and acne treatment. Vaccinations for Meningitis, Pertussis and HPV are available. MinuteClinic practitioners will review information about the vaccine, administer it and then provide you with a summary, receipt of vaccination and educational materials. They’ll even send a summary of the visit to your child’s primary care provider if you would like them to. MinuteClinic also offers acne treatment which is perfect for tweens and teens who want to head back to school with clearer skin. They offer personalized consultations and treatment recommendations for all ages, whether a prescription is needed or you are just looking for which over-the-counter medication will clear the acne. When it comes to starting the school year and fall sports season off healthy, MinuteClinic is the place to go!

 

10 Sports Essentials For Parents

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Throughout ten months of the year most of my evenings and weekends are spent cheering on my kids at their various sports- from the baseball diamond to the football stands to the soccer fields to the basketball court, and even at karate, swimming and gymnastics. If there’s one thing I have learned as a sports mom it’s that I need to be prepared for anything. Spring sports are wrapping up for us but Fall sports season will be here before you know it so I wanted to share this list of sports essentials with you so that you have it as you shop for back to school items this summer. Thanks to BODYARMOR for sponsoring this post.

Below you will find the list of items that I feel are essential for sports parents to have. I normally keep most of these items in the back of my van during sports season because you never know what you will need. It’s also helpful to keep most of the items in there so you don’t forget anything important as you run out the door to practice or games. If you buy a small basket or bin to keep all this in it’s easy to find what you need when you need it and to take out if you have to.

Items needed for both indoor and outdoor sports:

Uniform & Gear – Check your child’s league to see what is recommended when it comes to clothing, shoes and gear. Different sports have different cleats, there are different size soccer balls for different ages, some baseball teams require a face mask and some do not, etc. Also, each sport differs in what is provided. Some may provide the whole uniform while others may provide the jersey but you have to buy the pants. It’s always best to check out your leagues website and talk to the coaches before you go shopping.

Snacks - Snacks for both the player and the family are something you are going to want to pack, especially if you have younger children that will be sitting with you. Most of the time the player will just eat something at the end of the practice or game but the family may get hungry while they are sitting there. I typically bring a variety of snacks, including pretzels and animal crackers, in small ziploc bags.

Extra Equipment – It’s always handy to have extra equipment on hand. One thing I’ve found we’ve had to replace mid-game or practice are mouthguards for football. Other things to keep an extra of include baseball mitts, goggles for swimming and shin guards for soccer.

Sports Drinks – Replenishing sports drinks for your player are essential, especially on warm days. I like to bring at least one bottled drink per hour my kids are playing sports and two drinks for every hour if they are playing outside in hot weather.

One sports drink we recently started having Jacob drink during games is BODYARMOR, a premium sports drink with more potassium packed electrolytes, coconut water and vitamins. It has natural flavors, natural sweeteners and no artificial colors, unlike traditional sports drinks. It’s a great choice for young athletes especially, who don’t need all the extra sodium in their diets or the artificial ingredients that come from drinking other sports drinks on the market. BODYARMOR can be found in a number or retailers including Jewel, Meijer and Target here in the Chicago area (find a coupon here) and comes in 8-great tasting flavors: fruit punch, orange mango, strawberry banana, tropical punch, lemon lime, mixed berry, grape and blackout berry. Jacob’s favorite flavor is blackout berry.

First Aid Kit – Cuts and scrapes are bound to happen on the sports field so it’s always handy to keep a first aid kit on hand. Stock it with bandages, gauze, medical tape, antibiotic ointment, cold packs and tweezers.

Items needed for only outdoor sports:

Sun Protection - If you will be outside in the sun for any amount of time don’t forget the sunscreen. You’ll want to put it on your player (and yourself) before the game or practice starts and then reapply it as needed. For parents, an umbrella or pop up tent you can sit under can also keep you out of the sun and cooler on hot days. We bought a small pop up tent from the store that our younger child could sit under during games to keep him in the shade.

Extra Layers - I’ve learned from experience that it’s always important to carry extra clothes in the car because the temperature can change quickly as the day goes on. Numerous times it’s been warm and sunny and everyone was wearing shorts and then by the end of the game everyone had coats on and were trying to stay warm. I like to have a long sleeve undershirt for the player along with sweatshirts and coats for everyone in the back of my van just in case we need them.

Blankets – Blankets are helpful to have to keep warm on colder days but also can be used as a ground cover which is especially helpful when the ground is wet or muddy. I’d suggest bringing two blankets and making sure one of them has one side that’s weatherproof so if you put it on the ground the moisture won’t soak through.

Cooler – On warm days you’ll want to store your player’s drinks (and your’s too!) in a cooler to keep the drinks cold.

Chair – Whether it’s a camping chair or a folding chair you’ll want to have a chair to sit in. Don’t count on there being bleachers everywhere you go because some fields might not have any and you don’t want to have to stand for hours.

I hope this list helps you prepare for and enjoy your child’s sports season! What would you add to my list?

Papa John’s #UpYourDance Challenge

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Disclosure: This is a sponsored post.

What’s better than football and pizza?! How about a chance to win tickets to the big game or free Papa John’s pizza? To enter to win one of the amazing prizes Papa John’s is giving away, they are asking folks to show how they’d celebrate if their team scored points.

It’s easy to enter. All entrants have to do is follow @papajohns on Twitter or Instagram, upload their short video on Vine, Twitter or Instagram, and tag it #UpYourDance and #contest to enter to win!

Need some inspiration (or just want to laugh today)? Check out the video gallery of some of the submissions we’ve had so far for inspiration: http://bit.ly/UpYourDance2. I am loving the kids dancing and the one who does the slow dance with the ball.

Of course don’t forget to get some Papa John’s pizza while you are watching football games this season. It’s so delicious! I recommend the chocolate chip cookie pizza dessert as well. Yum!

Tailgating With McDonald’s

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(Disclosure: My tailgating party was sponsored by McDonald’s, an official sponsor of the NFL.)

I am so happy that football is back! There is little I enjoy more than spending time with family while watching the Bears (and now my oldest son!) play. It’s a Fall ritual!

Last weekend both my son and my nephew had football games on Sunday morning so we were getting together with family after their games. Twelve o’clock kickoff times aren’t the easiest to get ready for because being gone in the morning, for Church or youth football, means a rush to get some food ready once we get home.

We got to my mom’s house right before the Bears kicked off. Instead of cooking, we tried something new last week and picked up McDonald’s. This way everyone could get what they wanted and it was as simple as running to McDonald’s and picking it up. No cooking involved!

One thing I did add to the list of everyone’s food order was a box of cookies. Did you know that McDonald’s sold their delicious chocolate chip cookies by the box!? I didn’t! I regret only buying one box because, with a group, 2 or 3 boxes (at least!) is a must.

I kept the decorations simple. Just a football tablecloth, a few hanging decorations and a cute centerpiece that held the cookies was all we needed. We had football napkins as well, but no dirty plates or cups to wash. It was a really easy get-together to plan for and both setup and cleanup were easy-peasy.

Since not all of the kids were interested in the football game we made sure to have plenty to keep them busy. Along with playing with some toys upstairs, they played a couple games and spent some time crafting (more on that coming soon!).

They also loved playing with their football figures and Littlest Pet Shop animals that came in their Happy Meals. Overall, it was a great afternoon of football, food and fun.

We can’t wait for the next Bears game and will definitely be tailgating with McDonald’s again!

Want to join in on the fun? Learn about the ways you can earn weekly prizes and enter for a chance to win the ULTIMATE tailgate at mcdtailgate.com.

Our Big Game Celebration With Gold Emblem Snacks

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Football and food are two of my favorite things so when CVS/pharmacy contacted me about sponsoring my next football party I was so excited. Even though my favorite team didn’t make it all the way I was still looking forward to the big game last weekend.

CVS/pharmacy sent me an assortment of products from their exclusive Gold Emblem collection including a variety of nuts and other snacks, cookies, and juices. The morning of the party I went shopping to get the rest of the food, tableware and the decorations. Since I was short on time I decided to keep everything simple and I think everything turned out pretty good.

I am a huge fan of “themed” parties so everything except for a few bowls was football themed. I even had a special centerpiece- a signed Walter Payton football {thanks to my brother for letting me borrow it}!

Check out my little helpers above! We had to represent and wear our Bears football gear! I didn’t really have a favorite team to win until I heard Derrick Coleman’s inspiring story {about being deaf} the week before the game and then started rooting for the Seattle Seahawks to win.

I used little snack cups to display all of the nuts, the trail mix, the popcorn, and the pretzels that CVS/pharmacy had sent me. These snacks were a huge hit with the kids, especially my niece.

Cheese and cracker trays are popular at parties. I decided to try a new type of cheese with white cheddar and chipotle peppers and it was really good.

Spinach dip is healthy because it has spinach in it right? ;) We love to eat ours’ with Hawaiian bread.

We had chips and dip and tortilla chips and dip. I love the taco dip my mom made. It’s a layered dip but she makes it without the refried beans. {Thankfully there was a whole dish full of it on the counter…otherwise what you see in the picture above would have been all mine.}

After eating appetizers the kids played games with their Nana and my sister in law. I was busy watching the game and being disappointed in the commercials. For dinner we had pizza and chicken wings.

 After dinner it was dessert time! There were cupcakes and two types of Gold Emblem branded cookies. After more football it was time to say goodbye and my guests received goodie bags from CVS/Pharmacy.

We had such a fun time and I enjoyed tasting all of the delicious Gold Emblem snacks. My favorites are the Natural Pistachios, Milk Chocolate Sea Salt Caramels and the Cranberry Nut Trail Mix. The line has over 250 products so there is something for everyone, from savory to sweet.

What foods do you like to have at your sports parties?

6 Football Themed Crafts For Kids

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I’m excited to watch the Super Bowl this Sunday! Jacob is head over heels in love with football lately so I looked online for some fun craft ideas. Here are some of my favorites (click the links or images for all the details and instructions):

Pennant from Crayola

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Paper Bag Football from No Time For Flashcards

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Football Helmet Printable from Craft Jr

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Paper Football and Field Goal from SheKnows

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Football Footprint from A Teacher At Heart

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Football Snack Bowl from Simply Sprout

Find more football ideas on my Football Party Pinterest board.

Game Time Snack: RITZ Pastrami and Corned Beef Mini Sandwiches

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Check out this amazing game time appetizer that the folks at Ritz shared with me. This featured recipe is the snack-size take on the famous Carnegie Deli signature dish. Yum!

Find the recipe here.

Bears Football And Buffalo Wild Wings: The Perfect Combination

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Buffalo Wild Wings for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

I’m sure you all know by now that I love football.  I loudly cheer for my Chicago Bears and have even been getting my young boys into the game (though lately my 4 year old has started cheering for the Packers so I obviously have some more work to do there).

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One of my favorite football foods is wings and not just any wings but honey bbq boneless wings from Buffalo Wild Wings. I often send Sinisa out to pick them up when there are night games since the kids are sleeping. Thursday night games are great because then he can get a deal on my wings during Boneless Thursdays.

Mid-day Sunday games are my favorite because we can go as a whole family to enjoy the game and some family time at the restaurant after we go to Church. The boys love the arcade like games they have as well and I don’t have to worry about them being loud because the whole restaurant is loud- especially when our team scores a touchdown!

I look forward to many more football games at Buffalo WIld Wings with my family because there is nothing better than football and wings with the ones I love! Connect with Buffalo WIld Wings! Follow Buffalo Wild Wings on Twitter or Like Buffalo Wild Wings on Facebook.

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It’s Football Season!

GO BEARS

Football season ranks at the top of my Fall favorites list {right up there with Pumpkin Spice Lattes} so you know we are all wearing our Bears jerseys today in honor of the first Bears game of the season.

 

Super Bowl XLV: The Ultimate Man Date (Guest Post)

The following is a guest post by Beth Feldman:

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Ask any football loving fan what their dream date would be and nine times out of 10 he’ll say tickets to the Super Bowl. As my father-in-law always says, “you can’t put a price on a good time,” so if you’re considering biting the bullet and treating your significant other to the ultimate “Man Date,” follow this game plan and you’ll come up a winner:

Super Bowl Tickets – You can reserve seats for the big game on StubHub – Ticket prices start at $2200 all the way up to nearly $400,000 for a coveted spot in the Hall of Fame Suite. If you’ve just won Powerball, then the Super Bowl Hall of Fame option is definitely for you. The best thing about Stub Hub is that fans are constantly buying and selling tickets on the site so you should keep checking back to see what’s available or hedge your bets, and lock in right now!

Flights – While you can always hit the websites for your favorite airlines, my suggestion is to head over to Trip Advisor where you can select whether you’d like to take a non-stop or connecting flight and they arrange everything by price. Plus, there are ratings by customers on which flights they prefer.

Hotel Reservations – Head on over to the Arlington, Texas website which has detailed information on hotels in the area. You can aim for the Ritz Carlton, Hilton or a motel (if you’ve blown all your cash on the Super Bowl tix.)

Rental Car – If you’re flying into Dallas/Ft. Worth airport, then head on over to RentalCars.com for a breakdown of all the rental car facilities near the airport. That way, you can choose from a diverse array of options and price points.

Things to Do While in Arlington – If you’re in town for the weekend, visit the NFL Super Bowl website for details about some great charity events taking place throughout the weekend that feature appearances by NFL players. Plus, the City of Arlington’s official website also offers suggestions for attractions and dining options in the area.

So there you have it – treat your significant other to the ultimate “Man Date” and by the time Valentine’s Day hits, you should be on the receiving end of something big and sparkly.

(Disclosure: The post was sponsored by the Role Mommy Writer’s Network.)

Throwing A Game Time Party For Less Than $5 Per Person

Collective Bias recently challenged me to throw a game time party on a budget. I had a great time putting this together. I knew I wanted to have the party during a Bears game because they are my favorite football team.

I had football plates and napkins that I knew would be perfect for this so I was set on tableware. All I needed was the food so I headed to Walmart. I bought snacks like Chex Mix, Doritos, chips and salsa, and my very favorite fudge covered popcorn. I bought soda for everyone to drink. For lunch I decided to buy pizza. I chose DiGiorno Rising Crust pizza. I bought two to feed our group, one pepperoni and one cheese. I really liked the pizza and loved how DiGiorno didn’t skimp on the cheese or pepperoni. I also thought it was great that the DiGiorno box directed me to their website where it gave me the directions for cooking two pizzas at once so I didn’t have to guess and risk burning one (or both!) pizzas.

All together I spent less than $5 per person on food. Considering this was the price for drinks, snacks, and a meal I think that was a great deal. I think knowing that I can have celebrations with food involved and it not cost an arm and a leg will push me to have more gatherings in the future.

To read more about my party (and see more pictures) you can view my whrrl here.

(Disclosure: I was compensated for this post by Collective Bias but all thoughts and opinions are my own.)

#Snackbowl 2011 Contest

I just entered the Snackbowl 2011 contest and I’m excited to share it with all of you.

One lucky winner will receive:

  • Trip for 2 to the Hall of Fame® in Canton, OH.
  • Tickets to the Friday night “Enshrinee Dinner”
  • VIP tickets to the Friday night Hall of Famers post dinner reception.
  • Tickets to the PFHOF Enshrinement Ceremony on Saturday.
  • Tickets to a round table on Sunday with PFHOF Members.
  • Tickets to a Tailgate Party on Sunday before the PFHOF Game (provided such game occurs).
  • Tickets to the PFHOF Game (provided such game occurs).
  • A Plaque (to be designed and provided by MARS Advertising, Inc., Diamond’s agent) will be placed at the PFHOF Snack Bar during the Enshrinement Weekend and related events.
  • A “VIP Moment” during which a PFHOF Member will present a trophy (to be designed and provided by MARS Advertising, Inc., Diamond’s agent) to a winner determined by Diamond of the Promotion during one of the enshrinement events set forth above (to be determined by the PFHOF).
  • Plaque hung in the Hall of Fame snack bar
  • $5,000 cash USD

The contest ends February 7, 2011. Would you like to enter? You can find more information on the website. Good luck! :)

(Disclosure: I was compensated by Collective Bias for this post but all opinions are my own.)