December 2018 / Mainly Marta :: A Motherhood + Lifestyle Blog

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Welcome

What started as a digital diary to document a newfound journey as a stay at home mom / wife has quickly evolved into my own little corner on the internet where I share all that life brings my way -- the good, the bad, and those "aha!" moments. All with a hint of sarcasm, a dash of truth and bold European wit. Thanks for following along!

NEWSLETTER

12.21.2018

Educational Play ( + Gift Guide ) With LakeShore Learning


If there is one thing that I love it's toys that promote learning, imagination and education while my boys play. If that's something you're wanting for you little ones, may I introduce you to a brand that makes this their main mission?

LakeShore Learning has toys that encourage your little one to dream big and use their imagination. They have products for young scientists and fashion designers. They also have educational toys that help your little one make learning their ABCs and numbers so much more fun.


Felix recently received a spaceship and a wooden railroad track from Lakeshore Learning that he is absolutely in love with!

Every time I bring out these toys for play time, he squeals in delight. He spends hours playing with the cute little astronauts, their mini rover and their spaceship as well as taking apart and putting together his wooden railroad! I love that he gets to play with these toys and that his growing little mind is exposed to different jobs, scenarios and play that prompts him to use his imagination. I can't get enough of watching him enjoying these things!

Another thing that I love about Lakeshore Learning products is that they are super light and portable which means Felix can take them with him when he goes and spends the day at Grandma's house. It's so easy to pack up the wooden railroad and take it with us -- makes everyone's life so much easier and hassle free.



Gift Guide


Here is a mini gift guide composed of Lakeshore Learning products that any growing mind is sure to love playing with! I've numbered and linked each product down below for easier access.


Products 

No. 1: Doctor's Office
No. 2: Make Up & Hairstyling Doll
No. 3: Hands On Teaching Globe
No. 4: Dinosaur Adventure Backpack
No. 5: Young Scientist Microscope Set
No. 6: Super House Cleaning Set
No. 7: Feels Real Baby Dolls
No. 8: Let's Play School
No. 9: Puppy Purses
No. 10: Grandma's Dress Up Trunk
No. 11: I Can Drive First Fire Truck
No. 12: Toddler Safe Food Basket
No. 13: Deluxe Doctor's Office

Aren't these some of the cutest toys?! They're all so neat and fun! I can't wait to get my hands on some more of these goodies.

*Thank you to LakeShore Learning for sponsoring this post. 

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12.18.2018

Christmas Shopping + Present Haul (With Walmart)

Christmas shopping is probably one of the most stressful things about this season -- especially when you are part of a large family. I find myself struggling to come up with ideas when it comes to my parents and my teenage siblings. Why is it so hard to shop for adults?!

This year, Walmart reached out to me and invited my husband and I for a store tour and you guys -- it was awesome! Who knew that asking the managers a bunch of questions would result in finding the perfect gifts for everyone -- it was so fun and so informative to get the inside scoop on what is "in" this holiday season and what all the cool kids are looking at these days. 

The Walmart Holiday Shopping Experience 

Walmart's holiday section stretches into about 10 long aisles filled with gifts, decor and sparkling decorations that get you into the festive spirit as you walk around. There is enough wrapping paper, tape and bows to wrap all the toys in the store!


As I walked around the decor and wrapping paper aisles, I was a bit overwhelmed! There are so many pretty choices to choose from and for someone like me, who needs a theme, it took me a bit of time to decide what the wrapping paper colors for this year would be.

When I finally decided on my theme, it was off to the toy aisles and that was an experience in itself -- Walmart has all the toys and by all the toys, I mean allllllll the toys. Aisles and Aisles filled with toys for kids of all ages. It was hard to concentrate when we were surrounded with so many fun gadgets and play things. I felt like a kid again and my husband even put himself in our toddlers shoes and said things like, "I would have loved this at Felix's age" when looking at all the possible choices.



One of the neat things that Walmart has set up is a "hot stuff" table where they place all the most sought after toys. Legos, Elmos, and LOL Dolls all made the list this year. The most surprising thing on the table was Ryan's World Giant Surprise Egg -- we were told that these items are the fastest selling item next to bicycles. There was only one egg on the table and I felt guilty taking it, so we went to look on the shelf for these eggs and to our surprise, we only found one left in stock.

And that's when Walmart.com comes in! We were told that if you come into the store and find out that they just ran out of an item you were looking for. They have a neat little feature that allows you to purchase online and pick it up in store free of charge. Walmart.com also has a wider selection of toys and gifts, so if no store has what you're looking for, you'll probably find it online.


Another thing that I loved was the gift bundle / stocking stuffer section of the store -- cue shopping for all the adults in my life! They had so many bundles to choose from things like bath spa kits, lotions, fragrance mists, collections of hot cocoa and mugs, cute sets of lip gloss + nail polishes for the little divas and eyeshadow palettes for the make up lover.

I loved going through these aisles and thinking up of cute little bundles and self care packages you could gift. Gifts that have a lot of small things in them alway have made me the happiest because you can enjoy a little bit of everything!

I seriously had so much fun browsing Walmart's holiday section. After two hours of waltzing down aisles, debating with my on what would be the perfect gifts for our kids, siblings and parents, we had finally decided it was time to head to the cash register!


Lucky for us, the lines at the register were short, so we didn't wait long to get all our goodies paid for and to the trunk our car. But just in case you're in a hurry and want to avoid the huge lines, Walmart has implemented an awesome feature called Check Out With Me -- okay get this you guys: you can now ask a store associate to ring up your things from your cart without even nearing a cash register! How neat is that?!

Because this is fairly new, not all associates have the new technology on them, but when I asked a manager about it, he eagerly popped out his walkie talkie and was ready to get me someone who did! The staff at Walmart is seriously so helpful even though I could tell they had a million things going on.

Walmart staff in Tigard, Oregon was beyond friendly and helpful during our time there. They made the whole experience so much more fun!

Christmas Present / Gift Haul

We got home an unloaded the car and it was time to start wrapping all the presents, but not before I made a quick run back to Walmart to grab the gift labels I had forgotten on my first trip because you know, #mombrain.


Don't these just look so fun?! I had such a fun time picking each thing out and I hope the kids love all these toys. Here are some of the neat gifts that I found at Walmart which you can also find online! I've linked them down below.

It was really such a blast to get to work with Walmart this holiday season! I found great gifts at awesome prices and am so ready for Christmas to roll around so I can see Felix, Marcus and my siblings light up when they open their gifts. 

Special thank you to Walmart HQ for sponsoring this post and the Walmart staff in Tigard for making this one of the best holiday shopping experience I've ever encountered -- I'll be back next year! 



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