Kids, Travel

The Biggest Bounce House Ever Visits US Cities

More to come as I use compensated tickets to visit our local bounce house stop


The Biggest Bounce House Ever Visits US Cities

This is so exciting and for many kids could be the highlight to ending their summer. The Big Bounce America Nation-Wide Tour is coming to cities nationwide and it is nearly the beginning of the tour. This bounce house is 10,000 square feet and 32 feet tall and full of fun inside and out.


Tickets are available for stops in Wa, Or, Ca, Tx, Fl and more. Once you come to the location you will find field day-type games outside the bounce house and many stations inside. With safety in mind, they only allow so many inat once so while you wait your shift they have plenty of fun games outside.


Once you get inside, enjoy the bounce experience as you play basketball, slide into a ball pit, run the obstacle course and even stop at the DJ booth with music and plenty of space to dance. Tickets start at about $9 and once inside you don’t pay extra for the outside games.

Can you find a stop near you? I’ll be at ours! Start HERE!

Apps, Car Talk, Sponsored, Tips and Tricks, Travel

Tips On Negotiating The Best Car Price

This post is in sponsorship with I was compensated but topic/words are my own

Tips On Negotiating The Best Car Price

Almost more dreading than deciding on the car you want is the negotiating process at the dealership. We have 2 older boys and my husband and I can’t hold onto cars for long so we are typically in a car dealership a few times a year. Not only are we in a dealership for ourselves but because friends and family ask my husband to come car shopping with them because they know how much my husband loves the negotiation process. It is a bit of a weird obsession he has as a negotiator. So I had him help me gather our thoughts into 3 (proven by us over and over again) negotiating tips when buying a new or used car.

Do Your Homework

You have searched cars galore and now you have narrowed it down to a model or 2 you may be leaning towards. This is where you begin your pre-dealership visit homework. When you hear the words from finance at the dealership “We’ll make you a great deal”, do you really know what a great deal on that car is? Not if you haven’t done your homework. We like using to search for fair market values on the exact cars we want to look at.

Grab a notepad and pencil and write down the make/model of cars you want to see. List the fair market value that matches the exact features/series for that car. Do this for all of the cars you wish to see so it is handy in a moments notice. Make sure you keep or the apps available incase you find yourself liking a different model than you anticipated. Now, you have a number and a “great deal” will be that number or below.

Note Your Bottom Line

You know the fair value so now you can find your best bottom line! This will be what you want to pay after your trade in or down payment, etc.. Here is an example of the tone you can use in negotiation (right away) when it comes to fair value and your bottom line. For this example I plugged my car into – 2016 Honda CR-V Touring Edition. I then clicked on comparison tool and see that the lowest it has sold for is $34,156 and the highest is $35, 139 with an average price of $34, 648. That gives me a good start to find my bottom line.

“I have a … to trade in. My bottom line is $34, 700. I know that fair value is $34, 735  so I am not asking for too much to come in at my bottom line. I don’t care how you work the numbers. You can discount the car or change the trade-in value on my old car but I need that bottom line top be $34, 735 (after registration fees).”

They may try and say you need to put more down (hence, the price becomes more than your bottom line), but you can tell them to please go back and rework the cost and trade in to get you to that number you gave. You may have to have a down payment especially if the car you trade in is a lot lower in value. Know your comfortable down payment mark and if they are close-get them closer!

Be Prepared For A few Hours Time (and no kids)

Most dealers play a game of wearing you down. You come in with a fair value, a bottom line and down payment and they will still try and stay away from your mark. Be prepared to send the dealer back to the sales manager again and again and be prepared for the finance guy to be “busy” and make you wait for a response. This wears you down fast. You just want to accept and go home. We have never walked out of a dealership because we allowed them to break us down-ever!

Keep the kids at home or with a sitter and most importantly, be prepared to walk away with no car! We have done that more than once. When they play hard to negotiate we turn to a phrase something like this,

” Listen. We don’t NEED this car today. You are our first dealership stop. It looks like we are too far apart so we will be taking off. Thank you so much for your time.”

If you have to walk away it is most likely because that truly is going to become your best deal. We have done it and we have been called back with the deal we wanted. We have also used it as leverage for the next stop by explaining to their team that we walked on place one for being too far off. It is a process and you need to be prepared to spend hours and even walk away and start again. In the end, it is your money and your monthly payment that will become your reward for taking the proper time.

So, head on out. is truly a must visit before you head to the dealership. My note above says this is a sponsored post, but I am serious when I tell you that we never head out to shop before using their website to do our homework. I am honored now that I can team up with them for this post. We use it to browse cars, read reviews and find fair values. Plus, when you tell a dealership you found the fair value on it is hard for them to argue with you. Hold your ground, it will work out for you and your wallet.

I’m curious, did you learn something new here? Are you less intimidated to car shop now?

Deals, Kids, Parenting, Travel

10 Seattle Activities To Do With Kids feat. Seattle Family Adventures Guide

10 Seattle Activities To Do With Kids feat. Seattle Family Adventures Guide

Living near Seattle we are very familiar with heading into the city for a day of fun. There are so many things to see and do especially if you have kids. If you are moving to the area or planning to visit, I first recommend getting a copy of Seattle Family Adventures: City Escapes, Day Trips, Weekend Getaways and Itineraries for Fun-Loving Families by Kate Calamusa.


We live north of Seattle and a lot of our family is south of Seattle so it makes the city a gathering place for us for birthdays and occasions. We just recently celebrated my Dad’s 70th birthday with the entire family beginning with the Starbucks Reserve Roastery and Tasting Room then dinner at Cutters Point. We topped it of by riding the Wings Over Washington exhibit on the pier and a waterfront walk.

Seattle activities

10 Seattle Activities To Do With Kids feat. Seattle Family Adventures Guide

  1. Woodland Park Zoo – – watch for ‘rainy day’ discounts they often offer
  2. Seattle Great Wheel – – must like heights and gorgeous views
  3. Safeco Field and Centurylink Field – Seattle Mariners (MLB), Seahawks (NFL) & Sounders (MLS) games
  4. Firehouse Coffee – in Ballard neighborhood – When you need a coffee break and the kids need a play yard
  5. Wings Over Washington – – this is brand new so not in the guide (next to the Great Wheel)
  6. Blue Highway Games – – they have tables to stay and play board games as a family
  7. Underground Tour – – ages 6+ 90 minute tour of the city…underground.
  8. Pike Place Market – – currently getting a fantastic update, browse vendors and shops. The home of the famous Flying Fish market
  9. The Museum of Flight – – do the kids like war planes and a NASA training rocket? Must see.
  10. GameWorks – – surrounded by many fantastic restaurants, there are over 180 games with a bar and big screen so Dad can catch his game while the kids play

Seattle Sounders

If your family loves sports, I highly recommend attending a Seattle Sounders or Seahawks game while in town. They say around here that if you enter Centurylink Field as a visitor you will leave a fan. Seattle loves its teams and the pride is plentiful inside one of the loudest sports stadium.

**MLS Seattle Sounders game tip: If you score Sounders tickets, head to Occidental Park 90 minutes before kick off where Pre 90 starts with guest speakers and they will announce the starting 11. The last one we attended my son won a hat (above photo). At 60 minutes prior to kick off the crowd starts marching to the field with popular chants. If you are going to the game, this is a must do! Scarves Up! Want to see a video we made of the Pre 90 experience? Watch it here!

Find these activities and so many more in the book, Seattle Family Adventures.

Kids, Travel

Mini Golfing at Meadowbrook Family Fun Center in Yakima, Wa


My husband travels the state and a tad beyond for work. In the summer and on school breaks my so and I like to tag along with him. This leaves us roaming new towns while he works the days exploring and finding things to do.


In a recent trip to Yakima, Wa we came across the Meadowbrook Family Fun Center. It had mini golf, bumper boats, batting cages, go karts and an inside arcade and restaurant. A little kid heaven all in one parking lot. He chose mini golfing (no comments on his golf swing form).


It is an adorable Old west theme. It is lined with mini town bbuildings labeled and each hole has fun features as you move through.

mini golfing

This is a fun place should you find yourself in the area. A day of fun we ended by seeing Boss Baby in the local theater and lunch at Miner’s Landing.

mini golf

Anthony's Children Reviews, Education, Kids, Travel

Why War Exhibit at the Flying Heritage Collection of Paul G. Allen

FHC Date

There is a new exhibit opening on March 4, 2017 in the Paul G. Allen Flying Heritage Collection called Why War: The Causes of Conflict. Walking through the collection of planes, weapons and tanks is fascinating. However, they wanted to add a bit of conversation to what you are seeing. These machines are built for war, but why? These are massive and some are capable of destruction at their active state. Why did we need such enormous and mighty machines of war? This exhibit is full of answers and more.


This is set up in a far corner of the main hanger and it is all interactive. In this little space, you and the kids will get lost for a long time. With large touchscreen panels that greet you, your fingers control the education you read and watch. Choose a war and you get so much for that time period-war facts, figures and even videos. You can even find popular culture for that era-there is a clip of I Love Lucy you can watch!

FHC 14

Moving on you see displayed atom bombs and tools. There are media and protest posters from all eras and another touchscreen display about the people of war-men, women, children and soldiers to get to know for different wars.


Anthony’s favorite was the conflict command center. There are interactive computers set up that make you the leader of a country. You are given scenarios and you make the decisions on resolution. You can even (pretend) call advisors for their opinion like you might actually do. You are timed and once you move through a solution process it ranks you. Anthony was labeled as a Strategist for his choice of resolution on the conflict he played with. He is going on 9 and enamored by this part of the exhibit.

There is more as well as a peak into the actual collection, watch Anthony’s video below:

If you know someone in the Seattle are or plan to make it into Everett for a peak into the Boeing plant and museums, visit They are available for class and group tours. The kids would highly enjoy this from about Anthony’s age and older.

Clothing, Gift Ideas, Kids, Travel

NoNetz Boys and Men’s Swimwear that Prevents Chaffing

Sample sent for feature

nonetz shorts

As a Mom when we are out on a spring or summer outing we have enough to worry about. We are focused on packing enough food, snacks, sunscreen, chairs and toys. If we are traveling we have locking up the home, mail delivery, car rental, flights, car maintenance if on a road trip and so many other worries that steel our focus. We don’t have much more energy left for avoidable disturbances like sand in the shorts, crying with chaffing discomfort, children who may be sensitive to materials and refuse to wear swim trunks, etc. NoNetz men’s and boys swimwear prevent chaffing and so much more.

NoNetz lining

NoNetz has 3 boys color choices and 6 men’s styles to choose from. Because the lining is made of an antibacterial spandex you don’t get the chaffing and it hugs the legs enough that sand and other debris stay on the outside. There is nothing worse for a boy (or man) to break out those new swim trunks bought for a special vacation and after a day is left with painful rashes. That can ruin a few days of vacationing. This is such a brilliant idea and my son won’t wear his old swim trunks anymore.

NoNetz drawstring

We have 2 trips coming up and I had him try these on for test and he made it very clear he wants these ones packed for him for the hotel pools. He is only 8 but right away noticed there is no net before I had the chance to point that out and was actually excited to see the spandex instead.

NoNetz shorts

What makes NoNetz the best swimwear choice?
*    Better Vacations
*    Prevents the inner thigh rash
*    Anti chafe, Anti bacterial liner
*    This liner is NOT a compression short – who wants to be squeezed there?!
*    Prolonged use of compression shorts reduces reproductive capabilities.
*    UPF 50+
*    Functional drawstring
*    Water resistant fabric – super quick drying
*    Chlorine proof so it lasts longer
*    Made in Brooklyn, NY
*    Designed for the texture sensitive
*    Endorsed by Generation Rescue & Surfer’s Healing
*    Parent Tested, Parent Approved
*    Gold Recipient of the Mom’s Choice Award
NoNetz Back
You can get NoNetz for the boys and men in your life right now so you have them ready to go on your next swimming adventure. The boys shorts run about $35 and the men’s are about $50. The price is fantastic for the quality and design you get. My son’s shorts does come with a drawstring which is great because with drawstrings you can buy a size a tad bigger so they can last up to 2 seasons by fit.
noNetz swim
What style do you like best? My son chose the green and blue-Seattle Seahawks colors! Make sure you follow on Facebook so you can spot promotions and sales.