When I last checked-in from our Back-to-School shopping adventure at Gurnee Mills, there was one store left that I wanted to hit - one that's been a staple of my seasonal fashion coverage for kids for over a year now, RUUM American Kid's Wear. What's become crystal clear over the past year is that we have one very fickle young fashionista in five-year-old Addie, who will quickly accept or reject an outfit or item (even ones that Daddy and Mommy really like), but 2-year-old Finley is a little more easy-going, at least for now. With new Fall collections (including Modern Rocker, Woodland and Back to School) in-stores and online at RUUM.com, the folks at RUUM invited us into their store to grab a few more outfits for the girls, and with $100 in Gift Cards and some additional cash from The Rock Father, here's what went down...
I don't post a ton of deals here on THE ROCK FATHER, but once in awhile something comes along that I have to share. Now through August 31st, the crew over at Crayola Store are offering 50% Off Sitewide. That means you can stock up on some of the best supplies available (provided you have your school's shopping list already), and while I know a lot of folks are doing a sorta Back-to-School pushback this year, worry not - those are the same people that break out the stock articles about "stores setting up Christmas too early" every year. It's not a new thing. I need to shop soon, myself. I'll have a kindergartener this year, and that's still an incredible thing to me.
I'm always intrigued by, and in some cases bummed that a lot of the new baby products weren't around when I could actually use them for my own girls. Even in the jumps between the release of our first daughter in 2009 and the sequel in 2012, there was so much cool stuff that didn't exist just three years prior, and here I sit with my youngest now two, and it's really set-in that my days of having a "baby" in my life are over. But, for those of you that are just entering your parenting adventure (or perhaps starting a new chapter in it), goumikids is a new player on the scene - a Portland-based company founded by two Moms (Lili Yeo and Linsey Ebuen), longtime friends on a mission to improve the lives of not only those around them - but Global residents as well.
We're just days away from the official start of summer, and that means that Camp Season is about to hit full-swing. For us, Addie just started Theatre Camp today (Broadway Beginners... and here I said I wouldn't do the "acting" thing with her), and I know a lot of parents with little ones about to embark on some big adventures in the weeks ahead.
For those of you gearing up for Camp, my friends at RUUM American Kid's Wear have sent over a list of their Top Five Camp Essentials, and since that's one of our favorite stores, I'm sharing them here with all of you!
I can distinctly recall a time when I was a little kid - distracted by some cool new action figures in the lower-level toy department at Wieboldts - and when I approached my "Mom" - a lady turned around and revealed herself not to be my Mom, but a lady with similar hair and a similar jacket. I was terrified - and while I wasn't truly "lost" (my Mom was an aisle or two over), I could've been because I wasn't staying with my grownup like I should've been. Now, as a parent myself, I'm even more terrified of being separated from my girls - especially since they have a habit of just taking off. For peace of mind, there's a product out called SafetyTat, and with summer here and plenty of adventures taking place, I received a few samples that I was eager to try out.
This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Weave Made Media® and Rubbermaid, but all my opinions are my own. #WeaveMade #FastTrack http://my-disclosur.es/RgFrEH
We have a "two-car" garage here at Rock Father HQ, but it's been awhile since it's actually seen a car - a real car - inside it. My Dad might've pegged it best when he deemed it "the warehouse" on a visit last year, a nickname that I've since adopted since the garage has been used for anything but keeping vehicles safe these past few years... rather, becoming a place for storage, toys and projects... with my tools and such shoddily tossed-in with no real organization. I did tackle the Christmas decorations back in January (something I'd written about), but with Spring here, it became really apparent that I absolutely have to get that garage whipped into shape. For my kids, it probably looks like the warehouse in INDIANA JONES. To me? A mess.
Sometimes new experiences come from unexpected places, and one of those recently occurred when one of my Facebook friends introduced me to Scentsy Fragrances. I really didn't know much about Scentsy aside from seeing occasional stickers or ads for it, but I was willing to give it a shot here at Rock Father HQ in hopes of bringing some interesting fragrances into my office and home.
As a work-at-home Dad with two girls, two dogs, and limited time, I'm always working to keep things clean. In fact, you could say I'm a little OCD about it, and I'm vacuuming pretty often. That said, when the folks at Eureka asked if I'd be willing to take their new Eureka AirSpeed ALL FLOORS Vacuum for a spin, I took them up on the offer - especially when they told me that independent testing shows that it "cleans carpets better that the Dyson DC41." You see, I have a Dyson... so I was interested in seeing how it stacks up against the competition.
So here's the deal: People ask me all the time, "The Rock Father, why do you rock so hard how do you look so great all the time?" Yes, they address me with "The" before "Rock Father," much like you'd always address THE AQUABATS as "The" Aquabats. But nevermind that, because I'm being silly here... people never ask me that, because I look completely disheveled more often than not these days, but I'm working on it. I'm a work-at-home Dad, and while this website and my adventures in media are a big part of my life, the biggest part of my life is raising my two daughters, Adalyn and Finley. With all the time I spend with them (as I type this, we're actually in-between Parent-Tot Playtime at the Park District and Gymnastics this afternoon), sometimes I forget to take care of myself.
And now it's time to take a break from our regularly-scheduled entertainment coverage to discuss something of great importance to me: keeping the house clean. I work from home, and it's always a challenge to keep Rock Father HQ looking it's best, and to assist, the folks at Eureka recently sent me one of their new Eureka AirSpeed ALL FLOORS Vacuums (available Exclusively at Walmart) to test out. While the official results from my state-of-the-art product testing facility are forthcoming, THE ROCK FATHER and Eureka are teaming up to give YOU a chance to bring some of that #EurekaPower home. Not one, but TWO lucky readers will received one of these new machines. Let's rock.
At the beginning of February, the folks at Panasonic USA reached out to THE ROCK FATHER to give their new Panasonic Arc 3 Wet/Dry Shaver (available now from my affiliate, Target) a spin. You could call it a bit of a "Scruffy Dude Challenge," and actually, that's exactly what we'll call it! There's one area of my chin that never gets a shave - my ZZ Top portion, if you will (for a price, I may cut it) - but the rest of my baby-like face often needs some attention. While I might go into more detail on my personal Arc 3 (sounds like something IRON MAN would use) experience in a future post, Panasonic has offered up another Arc 3 Wet/Dry Shaver (a $130 value) that one of YOU can win. But we'd like to see your #ScruffyDude...
My wife watches KEEPING UP WITH THE KARDASHIANS. I don't like the show... but I do like Kanye West. It makes me feel very conflicted at times, and that said, I feel weird that I'm sharing Kardashian news here on THE ROCK FATHER... but it fits. Beginning March 15, Babies 'R' Us will be the exclusive retailer for KARDASHIAN KIDS, a new line of clothing for girls up to 24 months with items ranging in price from $15-$30. My first reaction is that it seems weird to limit a line called "kids" to just girls - and to further limit it by only going birth-24 months, but some of the samples look cute, so who knows? Perhaps it will expand as the real-life Kardashian Kids get older. Personally, I really like the outfit worn by the girl below right...