Tuesday’s Tip: Be Aware of Your Influence

Take a moment to sit back and reflect on your life.  Ask yourself these questions;

Am I a happy person the majority of the time?

Am I a positive influence on others?

Who or what are the positive influences in my life? (Family, friends, media, music)

To be honest I never really even considered a correlation between the people, media, music, etc. in my life and who I am as a person. Or the impact that my media, music, etc. decision had on my children. Shoot, I thought it was cute when my child started singing Poker Face by Lady Gaga and music in that same genre. That is until I had the opportunity to attend a very inspiring presentation, and it was during that presentation that I had an authentic aha moment!

A couple of years ago at a MOPs meeting two DJs from YES FM gave an amazing presentation about the pest, weeds, and chemicals that can harm your psyche.  I am sure you are familiar with the expression, ‘you are what you eat’.  Well this presentation addressed the fact that you are what you listen to, watch, and whom you choose to keep company with, mind-blowing right!?!

As we entered the room there was three different items on a table.  There was a basket full of fruits and vegetables, a box of Twinkies, and a bottle of Roundup.  They began the presentation by explaining that the fruits and vegetables represent the healthy or nutritious media for the soul. 

The examples they listed as good, or positive influences were, Veggie Tales, PBS programs, Christian radio (Matte West/Amy Grant), and a few others. When it comes to relationships, the vegetables and fruit represent those that nourish you, the positive and encouraging individuals and relationships.  Then attention was directed to the box of Twinkies on the table.


The box of Twinkies represents the media information, music, and relationships that are not necessarily good or positive, but not exactly negative either, but neutral.  The examples given were Sponge Bob and family friendly music (The carpenters/Frank Sinatra) and shows.  With regard to individuals in your life the box of Twinkies represent the relationships you have with individuals who perhaps focus more on the superficial things in life, while not bad, it isn’t positive either. As they moved down the table and focused their attention on the spray bottle of Roundup they indicated that it, without a doubt, represents the negative or toxic influences in the media, music, and the like. 

The examples they gave were MTV, Lady Gaga, violent games, etc. The presentation really struck a nerve with me. I had never realized just how influential even the background music or television shows could be not only to a young child, but me as well.  In terms of relationships this is where those individuals who talk about other’s behind their backs, who feel the need to tear other’s down in order to build themselves up, who attack the person as opposed to the issue, who live by motives, games, and manipulation.  These are the toxic relationships.

After that presentation I made a conscious effort to only listen to positive, uplifting music in the car and at home.  The result was surprising, my mood, as well as the children’s, seemed to be more uplifting.  I illustrated more patience with the children and them with each other.

With regard to relationships I feel it is important that we take each person’s situation into consideration and understand that sometimes we have been placed in a relationship with a Twinkie or a Round-up/toxic individual in order to be the positive and encouraging influence. But this can be a slippery slope, be cautious how much time you spend because they can also be influencing you.

So, from time to time take a moment out of your day and reflect on the influences in your life and consider who you are influencing. And always remember that we all have the potential to be a nourishing component in someone’s life or a toxic one, be the veggie in a world filled with Twinkies!

PinyPon Party (vlog)

Guess what we did? Here are a few hints….

We hosted a Mommy Party! Sponsored by PinyPon and it was a blast! Watch the clip to learn more (oh, and just to warn you when I recorded this I was extremely tired so, enjoy!).

Here are a few pics of the masterpieces the girls made…

The girls had so much fun playing with the PinyPons. Each guest went home with their very own PinyPon, PinyPon and Nenuco coupons to give their parents, Fall Fashion show certificate of participation, and any jewelry that wasn’t eaten. And two lucky winners went home with an additional treat! We had a raffle and pulled two girls names, one for the Nenuco baby and one for the PinyPon Caravan (we also received each of these for hosting, talk about awesome!). It was a fabulous night, thank you MommyParties, PinyPon, and Nenuco!

For all you out there who are looking for the perfect Christmas gift for a little girl between 3 and 7 yrs old this is it! The Nenuco Baby was also a huge hit with our toddler, she is excited to start using the potty just like her Nenuco baby!

By publishing this post, I received free products as part of a promotional program with MomSelect. All opinions are my own.

Turkey Talk and Tots’ Trot Scavenger Hunt at the Park!

A couple of weeks ago we met up with our playgroup in the park to Talk Turkey!

The kiddos made turkeys. The moms helped their kiddos make their very own little turkey and the kiddos were prompted to come up with things they were thankful for this thanksgiving. The things they are thankful for at this age is priceless. When I got home I made certain to write them down. Our toddler was thankful for her toddler bed. Our preschooler was thankful for his sisters, how awesome is that! And our first grader was thankful for her family, all of them, she clarified in case there was any confusion. I am so glad I wrote them down so that years from now I can look back on that day in the park and have fond memories, what a treasure! And that is one of the many things I am Thankful for this Thanksgiving, specifically, the opportunity to meet such amazing moms and their kiddos through our playgroup and share events like this one with them.

After all that Turkey Talk we had our own little Thanksgiving. Everyone was asked to bring a dish to share for lunch as well as their own plates, cups, and utensils. We had:

  • PB & J squares
  • Veggies & dip
  • Cheese sticks
  • Cookies

It was totally a Toddlers Thanksgiving feast.

After we had lunch we went on a quick Tot’s Trot and little ones were each given a brown bag with an apple, apple crisp recipe, instant oatmeal packet, and stickers inside to use as a marking device in order to indicate when they located the items glued to the outside of their bags for the  mini scavenger hunt. Thank you for sharing this toddler friendly scavenger hunt From Chalkboard to Strollers (awesome blog, be sure to check it out!).

We had such a wonderful time.  It was an enjoyable morning for the kiddos and moms. I thoroughly enjoyed catching up with the other moms and having time for adult conversation while the little ones played on the playground. We also lucked out with regard to the weather, it was amazing! I had asked the moms to please dress children accordingly. Bring layers and hats and mittens if the weather calls for them but thankfully the kiddos were able to shed those layers because it was a warm sunny day.

I had such a wonderful time, the kiddos, and other moms seemed to as well, I think we will make this an annual event, a fun-filled Thanksgiving celebration in the park!

Tuesday’s Tip:Traveling with Children

With the Holidays vastly approaching travel is inevitable, and along with travel comes the travel torture. We all know it, even if you have been blessed with the best little traveler in the world eventually tormenting repetitive comments cometh.


Some of the classic tormenting chatter we hear in the car:

 •Are we there yet?

 •I have to go potty?

 •How much longer?

 •I am hungry!

 •Done…Done…Done (my husband’s favorite, our son yelled this after only two hours into a 15 hour journey).


This is when mommy needs to pull out her fun bags…no, not those fun bags (where is your mind?) – bags filled with fun activities for the kiddos. These will vary depending on the age of your children but it is wise to have a small tub with a lid for each child that contains activities they will enjoy.


Items to include in the car for toddlers & preschoolers:


 •Coloring books (only 3 crayons & watch them in extreme heat)

 •Quiet toys- doll or action figure

 •Stickers (might end up on car- vinegar & baby oil will get off any adhesive left behind. Sometimes ten minutes silence is worth the clean up later.).


 •Movie (If you have DVD player in car- if not, get one. Movies are perfect for long car rides. Must have strict rules, only watch movies during long trips, that way it is a special treat, and not the norm.).

 •Car bingo


 •Encourage older children to play additional car games together (20 questions, what animal am I, Name the healthy food- see hybrid time)

You could also make a fun scavenger hunt for the kiddos to occupy their time in the car.  I made one for a trip we took to Cinncinatti and the kiddos had so much fun, click here to read more.




I suggest packing in your luggage new time filling activities for the journey home. This way they are not already bored when they get in the car to go home.

Also, for those of you traveling with toddlers who might be potty training, remember, you can

Travel While You Train (Potty Train)


You are now prepared for travel. Happy trails!

If you enjoyed this tip you might also like:

Donating Done Easily

No more Kittens Losing their Mittens

Moms’ Timeout Show: Simplifying Thanksgiving (includes a Giveaway)

Calling all moms! As moms we are no stranger to the act of giving.  However, at Thanksgiving we moms tend to have a different type of challenge. The challenge of finding the balance between perfection and reality, so that Thanksgiving can be enjoyed by all, including mom. Sometimes we get too caught up in the Norman Rockwell or Martha Stewart illusion of Thanksgiving.  And that is precisely what it is, an illusion.  In this segment of Moms’ Timeout will be discussing ways to simplify Thanksgiving through the use of more conveniently prepared food and lowering our expectations.


Remember moms, you set the tone for the day.  If you envision a calm and enjoyable Thanksgiving Day then you need to convey a calm and enjoyable atmosphere and it all starts with your expectations.  Your family will not think less of you because you did not prepare everything from scratch, or to a specific family member’s preferred liking. If they do then they need to reevaluate their own priorities and perhaps next year that individual should make the said dish from scratch, and to their liking, since it is their favorite. Don’t allow your Thanksgiving to fall prey to the frazzled host, simplify!

And to help you simplify your Thanksgiving feast we have a giveaway!

Moms’ Timeout and Among Friends Healthy Baking Mixes are teaming up to provide one lucky follower two packages of convenient and healthy cookie mixes, one chocolate chip cookie mix and one oatmeal raisin. Since the winner will be chosen after Thanksgiving we felt cookie mixes might be just what moms are looking for to get their holiday baking started.

How to enter:

Like the Among Friends Healthy Baking Mixes Facebook Page

Like Mom on the go in Holy Toledo Facebook Page

Follow Mom on the go in Holy Toledo via Twitter

Once you have done all three please post a comment stating you have done so and share your favorite Thanksgiving dish.

Winner will be randomly selected Dec. 3rd

Also, we are so happy and excited for Allie and Lilly as they start-up their own businesses! Each has some really fabulous finds for the holiday season be sure to check them out, click here to be linked to Allie’s Thirty One Bags Website and click here to be linked to Lilly’s Avon Website.

THE Tailgating Game of the Season! (GIVEAWAY)

Here in the Midwest November means two things, Thanksgiving and Ohio State vs. Michigan college football game. Being so close to the Ohio Michigan border often means families are divided. So, during the border battle, you often find deeply intensified rivals.

There have been some crazy stories of Ohio State and Michigan fans going head to head but, for the most part it is a friendly rivalry.  I suppose it depends on where you decide to watch the game. But one thing is for sure, no matter where you are watching the game, or what team you are rooting for, the one thing that remains constant, GRILLING!

Perhaps you have been blessed with ticket to the game or are simply tailgating before the big show down. Maybe your neighbor, family member, or you are hosting a party. Thus, no matter where the grill may reside make certain it is accompanied by Heinz! You can forget a lawn chair, you can forget an umbrella, shoot, you can even forget your beverages, those are all forgivable by fellow tailgaters/party goers, but never, I repeat NEVER, forget the Heinz!


Heinz and Mom on the go in Holy Toledo want to make certain you do not drop the ball at your tailgating party.  So, Heinz is giving away a fun tailgating pack that includes the following:

•                    Heinz 57 Sauce, Heinz 57 Steak Sauce and Heinz 57 Sauce with Honey

•                    Grilling tools

•                    Heinz blanket

•                    Mini football

•                    Heinz tailgating book (Has Q & A to test your football IQ, Football Facts, Heinz field highlights, and recipes!)


(Over a $60 value)

The Heinz Tailgating book has some pretty amazing, mouth-watering recipes.  Here is one my family really enjoyed…


Heinz 57 Pulled Pork

Serves: 8

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 8 hours


  • 1/2 cup Heinz 57® Sauce
  • 1/4 cup Lea & Perrins® Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. yellow mustard
  • 1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1 medium onion, chopped, or about 2 cups
  • 3 1/2 lb. boneless pork shoulder-blade roast, trimmed and cut into 4 pieces


1. In a 5-6 quart slow cooker, mix together 57 Sauce, Worcestershire Sauce, mustard, sugar, tomato paste, and onion. Season with salt & pepper if desired. Add pork, turning until well coated. Cover and cook on low heat setting for about 8 hours, or until pork is cooked through (no longer pink or an internal temperature of 165°F) and tender, turning occasionally.

2. To serve, remove pork from slow cooker. Pull pork into shreds using two forks. Return pork to slow cooker and stir until well mixed with sauce. Serve onto your favorite sandwich buns and serve immediately.

TIP: If desired, cook on high heat setting for 4 hours, or until pork is cooked through (no longer pink or an internal temperature of 165°F) and tender, turning occasionally.

And here are two more teasers from Heinz Touchdown to Tailgating book…

Franco’s 1972 Cocktail Meatballs

BBQ Chicken Quesadilla with Avocado Salsa

To be entered into the giveaway you will need to do the following:

Like Mom on the go in Holy Toledo facebook page 

Follow Mom on the go in Holy Toledo on twitter

Like Heinz 57 Sauce Facebook page

Post a comment stating you have done all three and then share who you will be rooting for, Ohio State or Michigan?

Winner will be selected randomly Nov. 19th!

Disclosure: Heinz provided me with a tailgating fun pack, love it! No other compensation was received. All opinions are my own.

Bathtub Fingerpaint

I have come to realize that every minute of every day has the potential for a learning opportunity. When in the car the kiddos enjoy spelling and sounding out words on signs and our toddler enjoys yelling out the colors on traffic signs/lights and alerting me of any trucks or busses.  Though this can be a little annoying at times I do find joy in the cheers coming from the back seat when they realize they have successfully identified, spelt, or sounded out a word. A trip to the grocery store is another opportunity to learn.  The children like to help pick out the produce which means they locate, identify, and help count the requested amount, and of course, our toddler once again identifies the colors. She is obsessed!  Cooking with mommy, doing laundry, playing games, doing yard work, etc. are all great opportunities for learning experiences, so why not the bathtub?

The other day we made fun paint for the bathtub!

Recipe for Bathtub Finger Paint:


  • 1 cup Soap, I prefer the body wash the children normal use since they will be bathing in it.
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • 5-6 drops food coloring, varies, depending on the saturation of color you are going for
  • 1 Jar, I prefer to have one with a lid so we can use it for the entire week

(Yields one color or one jar of paint)



Place all ingredients in the jar. Put lid on jar tightly and shake over sink (just in case).

Repeat for as many colors as you would like or do as we did and simply make the primary colors then have the kiddos mix the secondary on their own.

The kiddos had so much fun with the paint! Our first Grader taught our toddler how to mix the primary colors together in order to make the secondary and she thought it was magic, haha! I then took it a step further and taught our daughters about complementary colors.


We then did a few math equations, had some fun with spelling, and I enjoyed seeing the amazing masterpieces the kiddos created.


It was so much fun! It is amazing how much fun learning can be when you don’t make it a chore but rather integrate it into daily activities in life, use various mediums, and have a positive disposition.

Have you ever used paints during your kiddos bath time? Did your kiddos enjoy them? Do you have fun games you play with your kiddos in the car? What about the grocery store? Where is a favorite place, besides school, that you children learn a lot?

Preparing for Advent: Final Installment of Best-Selling Series! GIVEAWAY (great Christmas gift)

The momentous third and final volume in the Pope’s international bestselling Jesus of Nazareth series details the stories of Jesus’ infancy and boyhood, and how they are relevant today in the modern world.

Ultimately, Jesus’ life and message is a story for today, one that speaks to the restlessness of the human heart searching for the sole truth which alone leads to profound joy.

“I can at last consign to the reader the long promised little book on the narratives of Jesus’ childhood . . . Here I have sought to interpret, in dialogue with exegetes of the past and of the present, what Matthew and Luke recount at the beginning of their Gospels about the infancy of Jesus.” – Pope Benedict XVI

To be entered into the Giveaway simply…

Follow Mom on the go in Holy Toledo

Like Mom on the go in Holy Toledo facebook page

Like Image Books facebook page

Then post a comment stating you have done all 3 and share a favorite childhood memory.

Winner will be randomly selected Dec. 4th

Acts of Kindness Countdown to Thanksgiving

Last November our family lived 30 days of Gratitude which was extremely fulfilling.  This November we are doing something similar but this time there will be more order to the activity and the children are involved in preparing the activity…Acts of Kindness Countdown to Thanksgiving!

The idea is kind of similar to an Advent calendar. However in addition to a piece of candy each day there is also an act of kindness for the children to engage.  First things first…assembling an Acts of Kindness Countdown to Thanksgiving….

What you will need:

  • 1 mini 24 count muffin tin/pan
  • 4 sheets of construction paper (let kiddos select colors, need two colors)
  • 1 bag candy corn or equivalent sized candy pieces
  • 22 Adhesive dots (Scotch has great ones)
  • Thanksgiving themed stickers
  • 22 Acts of Kindness (See our list below…feel free to add, or alter the list so that it is age appropriate for your children. Ours is geared more towards our 5 and 6 year olds.)

Acts of Kindness List:

  1. Make an afterschool snack for your sibling.
  2. Put together a fun package for friends who live out-of-town. Make a card; include stickers, and other fun activities.
  3. Help clean out the pantry. Put all canned goods in a pile to be donated to the shelter.
  4. Give someone a compliment.
  5. Organize your clothes and place the ones that no longer fit in a pile and you and mommy can donate them to a clothing drive or shelter.
  6. Hold the door for someone; allow them to enter the building first.
  7. Go through your toys and books and those that you no longer use will be donated to children in need.
  8. Help around the house without being asked to do so, such as cleaning your room, the family room, or arts & craft drawers.
  9. Help your sister or brother with something in a kind manner.
  10. Teach your sibling how to do something, to put their shoes on, a crafts, trick, etc.
  11. Visit or call a relative or family friend that you do not see often.
  12. Make and Send a Random Card of Kindness to an ill child. http://loveletterscares.org
  13. Help mommy make dinner for a relative or family friend.
  14. Write a letter to a soldier and send to http://Kidz4Troops.org
  15. Get out your crayons and color one of the coloring pages found on Color A Smile and then send it to Color a Smile where it will be distributed to the elderly in a Nursing Homes or through Meals on Wheels Programs.  http://www.colorasmile.org/coloring.html
  16. Help organize books in the book shelf.
  17. Read an extra story with mommy. (Or read to mommy, if old enough).
  18. Help pack a Shoe Box filled with items for Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child.  http://www.samaritanspurse.org/index.php/OCC/Pack_A_Shoe_Box/
  19. Praise your siblings or a classmate when they do something kind.
  20. Kids Choice (allow your child to come up with their own Act of Kindness)
  21. Purchase mittens and hats to donate to the homeless shelter.
  22. Help mommy collect and drop off donations to the animal shelter.


Please encourage your kiddos to participate in the assembling of the Acts of Kindness Countdown to Thanksgiving.  By doing so they have the opportunity to practice and sharpen up on their fine motor skills, patterns, sequencing, addition, subtraction, etc. (steps towards writing, reading comprehension, and practicing math skills).

  1. Print off the Acts of Kindness list and cut each into one strip.
  2. Have children trace circles on the construction paper (we used the bottom of a cup as our template).
  3. Cut circles out.
  4. Have children place stickers on the circles.
  5. Have children place circles on the table in patterns. Have some fun with this, take your time and see how many different types of patterns they can create.
  6. Have children wash their hands and then open candy corn or equivalent sized pieces of candy, package. Then take a few minutes and have some fun with math!  Do some simple addition… place 5 pieces of candy on the table and then add 3 more, ask your child how many there are?  Then subtract two from the table and ask your child how many are left.  If you have older kiddos have some fun with multiplication!  Add five pieces to each cubby in the first row; have them multiply 4 x 5 and then check their work by actually counting out each piece of candy.
  7. Once you are finished having some fun with math have children count out however many you wish to include in each cubby (we included 3 pieces in each because all three of them will be participating in the countdown, so each will receive one piece of candy each day)
  8. Then have them roll up each Act of Kindness and place one in each cubby. (Well, 22 of the cubbies since Thanksgiving in on the 22nd, or adjust to your liking…24 days).
  9. Then place one Scotch adhesive dot at the top of each circle. And place circles over the cubbies thus hiding the candy and Act of Kindness.

Then each day have the children take turns uncovering the Act of Kindness for the day. Take a moment and discuss the act of kindness with your child/children to make certain it is comprehended accurately and then later in the day (we like to do this over the dinner table) discuss how they accomplished the act of kindness. Ask them how it made them feel, how they think it made the other person feel, and any addition questions associated with the act.

Does your family have a similar tradition around this time of year? Do you have any suggestions for additional acts of Kindness?  Was there an act of kindness you did or received from someone who had a strong impact on your life? Please share…