Chatting Over Chocolate

Thursday, April 24, 2014

April Showers Bring May Flowers // Fabulous Freebies!


As I listen to the pitter patter of rain outside my window, I'm reminded of what it is to bring!  May these April showers bring May flowers indeed!  Meanwhile, since floral and freebies will brighten even the gloomiest of days, I'm sharing a few of my favorite {FREE} "April showers bring May flowers" themed finds!


*You'll find the original source at the clickable link below each image.  Click through to enjoy these fabulous free downloads!  You're welcome to use the image above to pin the entire round up, but if you'd like to pin an individual printable/download please click through and do so from it's original source. Thank you! 



















{for the littles in your life}



Have a refreshing day, lovelies!  
Remember to dance in the rain!





Join me in the adventures to come!
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I appreciate each comment, & Facebook "like"! They let me know that you enjoyed this post, which makes it worth sharing! ;) 

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Virtual Vacation // Tokyo DisneySea


Last week we enjoyed a virtual vacation at Tokyo Disneyland in celebration of their 31st anniversary.  This week let's visit their companion park, Tokyo DisneySea!  Its stunning atmosphere and unique attractions have this park at the top of my travel wish list!  


This photo of Tokyo DisneySea is courtesy of TripAdvisor


At Tokyo Disneyland's 5th anniversary in 1988, Mr.  Masatomo Takahashi announced plans for a second Disney theme park in Tokyo.  Plans for this park changed over the years that followed.  At first they considered creating a park very much like WDW's Disney-MGM Studios, to be called "Disney Hollywood Studio Theme Park at Tokyo Disneyland".  They eventually settled on the idea of a "seven seas" based park in 1992.  They hoped to create a completely different experience from Tokyo Disneyland, and I think they achieved that goal masterfully!  Tokyo DisneySea opened on September 4, 2001, eighteen years after Tokyo Disneyland.  The park is barely into its teens, fresh, and overflowing with magic!  Let's check it out today, friends!

Friday, April 18, 2014

Five Loves on Good Friday


Good morning, sweet readers and cherished friends!  Thank you for stopping by on Good Friday!  Do you know why it's "good"?  ...


1.  Goodness vs. the Cross

Not sure why Jesus had to die?  What does it have to do with you anyway?  Check this out:




There is nothing that we could do to earn our salvation.  It is a gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.   All our "righteous deeds" are like filthy rags before a holy God.  Through Him alone can we can have redemption!  Christ willingly shed His spotless blood as the only acceptable payment for the FULL debt of our sins.  When we repent and place our trust in Christ, we are forgiven and offered eternal life!  That is the GOOD news of Good Friday!


2.  A Very Merry HALF-Birthday to Little One!
As of yesterday, Little One is OFFICIALLY 9 1/2!  So very exciting for her!  I just can't believe she's getting so close to those double-digits!  Has anyone figured out how to slow down this whole growing up thing? ;)





3.  First Skateboard Ride
Guess whose birthday list now has a skateboard on it?  It's never too soon to begin a wish list when you're 9 ...and a half! ;)

My dad {aka: Grandpa Bob} was there so give her a helping hand. :)



4.   So proud of Princess!
She has been working so hard, both in her studies and in volunteering to help at every opportunity!

Helping her Grandparents with yard work last weekend

As we prep to complete our homeschooling year, she has been scheduling her entire day down to the minute.  I admire her drive to accomplish her goals, and appreciate how self motivated she is in all she does.  I never have to ask her twice (in fact, I rarely have to ask her once) to get to work or help in any way.  I often find her tidying the living room or gathering dirty dishes without any prompting.  She's growing up to be such a fantastic, bright, and responsible young lady!  I couldn't be more proud of her!



5.  Easter Egg Decorating Party!
My parents invited us to color eggs at their house last night.  I love that they have made this a fun annual tradition with my sweeties!  Look at the adorable "mommy" egg made especially for me, with the magical {hidden Mickey} "o"!  These are the lit'l things that melt my heart!!






*Bonus Love* 


I'd like to wish my blogging bestie, Chrissy of Adventures in DIY, a VERY HAPPY BIRTHDAY today!!  I hope you enjoy a fantastic one, dear friend!



Thanks so much for visiting today, lovelies!  Have a beautiful Easter, and remember the true reason for the celebration, He is risen!




Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Virtual Vacation // Happy Anniversary Tokyo Disneyland!



On this day in 1983, The Walt Disney Company opened its first international theme park, Tokyo Disneyland!  What better way to celebrate than to take a virtual vacation there today?  Ready to ride a few unique attractions, and check out the Japanese twist on others?  We'll take in some magical shows, dine in Disney style, then wrap it all up with a great view of their spectacular nighttime parade!  I can hardly wait!  Let's get this {virtual} vacation started!!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Five Loves on Friday!



Hey, Friday!


...You totally read that in Joey Tribbiani's voice, didn't you? ;)

Friends, it has been a scrumptious week!  I'm excited to share some of the sweet memories made, and a few simple snack recipes too!  Let's get right to it!



1.  Biking with Bears
How cute is the contraption Little One rigged up to take her bear-y good friends for a ride?  My sweet girls have been over the moon that the weather is finally allowing for them to enjoy OUTdoor fun!





2.  My culinary cutie has skills!

Yumminess Your KIDS Can Make!  Cutie Kabobs:  purple grape, banana, strawberry, green grape, repeat 


Little One loves putting her creativity to work in the kitchen.  Yesterday she asked if she could make us a snack and dessert from fruits and veggies we had.  How could I turn down that offer? ;)  Her explanation of the kabobs was every bit as sweet as the treat itself!  She told me, "The reason I like these kabobs is because they are sweet, but they are good for you!  Usually when people think of sweets they think of things like ice cream, but these are sweet and so good and good for you!"  {Insert proud mommy smiles here!}  She placed pieces of lettuce on top of baby carrots to make them look like "real carrots" (stems and all), but this was just for cute presentation.  The proper way to eat this snack was to wrap the carrot in the lettuce.  I may need to give her a little cook nook here on the blog.  She's constantly creating fun snacks that kids can make on their own.  Think I should pass along the blogging torch to her?



3.  Brinner!
This week my parents invited us for dinner and my mom made such a scrumptious spread of all things breakfast for dinner!  A creamy crockpot hashbrown casserole, Sunny Breakfast Bake, and a strawberry dessert braid - it seriously hit the spot!  Thanks again, Mom! ;) 




4.  First Cookout of the Year!  
My husband grilled up some AMAZING, juicy, bacon cheeseburgers last weekend!  {I'm drooling just remembering how good those were! MmmMmmMmm!}  I L-O-V-E cookout season!!!  I just think everything tastes better on the grill ...well, except maybe ice cream, but you know what I mean!  This is the grilling goodie I think I need to get my hands on A.S.A.P.!  Any other recommendations for grilling must-haves I should add to my Summer Wish List?





5.  Cadbury Spring S'more Mix
I created this yummy mix around this time last year.  It's been on my mind this week, as those oh so delightful Cadbury creme eggs are everywhere now!! 

Click HERE for the recipe + 4 ways to share this adorable, sweet & simple {just 3 ingredients} mix!  

 Click throughpin, enjoy, and share with those sweetest to you! 


Thanks so much for visiting today!  Have a fabulous weekend!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Exploring World Showcase through Epcot's Kidcot Fun Stops



What is Kidcot?  This question was posed in a comment to one of my recent Walt Disney World trip reports.  Today's post will answer the question, and hopefully inspire you and your kiddos to join in on the fun during your next WDW vacation!

In each country throughout World Showcase you will find a Kidcot Fun Stop with a warm, welcoming cast member native to that particular country.  Here you can pick up a complimentary craft and make your way around the world (showcase), having the back of it stamped in each country.  The challenge of completing this craft encourages exploration throughout the pavilions and will enrich your family's Epcot experience!

You can find a list each Kidcot Fun Stop's exact location within the World Showcase here


They do change up the craft from time to time.  In years past, my girls made masks.  Last year, the characters Perry the Platypus and Duffy the Disney Bear were offered. Each option we've done over the years has consisted of a craft on a stick.


Here's a pictorial tour of our last Kidcot adventure!

Friday, April 4, 2014

Five Loves on Friday!



Happy FRIDAY, lovelies!



Here are a five lit'l things that I'm loving on this fantastic and fanciful F-R-I-D-A-Y . . . 


1.  Eat, Sleep, Dis, Repeat hit 100 subscribers!!!
Are you one of those fabulous fellow-Disney fanatics fans that have subscribed to my hubby's new YouTube channel?  If so, thank you!  We're thrilled to have you joining our family {via vids} for FUN in the Disney Parks and throughout Disney property!!! 

Looking for an escape from the still {in our area anyway} winter-ish weather?  This week's Eat, Sleep, Dis, Repeat vid includes plenty of sunshine, water slides, and Mickey sprinkles, at Disney's Typhoon Lagoon water park!   

Be sure to check out the other 9 videos too, Disney magic makes Fridays {or any day!} even better! (:


2.  Kate Spade "Get Out of Town" Tote Knockoff!
So, I have this problem.  You may have noticed that I adore Kate Spade loveliness, but my budget doesn't realistically allow for me to splurge on every lit'l thing that I swoon over.    Adorable, affordable, DIY look-a-likes to the rescue!  This cutie caught my eye on Pinterest this week!! LOVE it!  

How talented is Bev of Flamingo Toes to recreate Kate Spade likeness in such a stunning way?  I'm crazy about every last detail of this bag!



*Wanna pin this tutorial?  Please click through the link above and do so directly from the source.  Thanks! ;)



3.  I've Got Sunshine on a Cloudy Day
I'm always looking for a pretty excuse to play on Polyvore!  Here's the cheery goodness that I enjoyed putting together this week...

I've Got Sunshine on a Cloudy Day


Whatever the weather, a smile is the loveliest accessory!



4.  All Grown Up...
... the cast of"Growing Pains", and those who tuned in every week!  A few days ago my parents and I were chatting about the days of "Growing Pains".  Can you believe it's been TWENTY-NINE years since it first aired?!! 




Remember how "totally awesome" that show was?  While Growing Pains was one of my favorites growing up, I prefer Kirk Cameron in this vid much more!  I love the reaction at the end of their conversation!  Check it out!...

...that's a wake-up call we can all use! 



5.  Little Things ...



Thanks so much for visiting today!  Have a fabulous weekend!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Top 5 {Favorite} April Fools' Pranks of 2014


I love to laugh!  Who doesn't, right? ;)  While I don't like pranks that scare or upset people, I love watching funny videos and seeing the silly faux promotions companies come up with for April 1st.  Here are my top 5 of 2014.  I hope they bring a smile to your face too, friends!


Chili's Ice Cream  
Chili's announced their signature line of artisan ice cream!  Those flavors you love from their menu, now available to be enjoyed by the frozen spoonful!  Nacho Queso Crunch, Baby Back Chunk, and Buffalo Brownie Sundae - what's not to love?! ;) ... April Fool's, Chili's Style!




New Mickey-Shaped Foods at Disney Parks
  Disney introduces all new Mickey-Shaped Foods!  WDW will now be offering Mickey corn dogs, Mickey Dole Whips, Mickey churros, Mickey pepperoni pizza, Mickey veggie burgers, Mickey risotto balls, and of course Mickey turkey legs -- in your dreams! ;)

  



Bacon M&M's
You love M&M's.  You drool at the mention of bacon.  Mixing the two together - pure genius jokey goodness!




Cheeteau by Chester
Cheetoos launches a new line of perfume.  This is so cheesy!

Virgin America's New Feature:  Total Temperature Control By Nest
A new partnership between Virgin America and Nest allows airline passengers to customize their own climate at 35,000 feet.  Which option would you choose?  I prefer "Cancun Afternoon", please!




In case you missed it, I shared some April Fools' Fun here yesterday too!


 Head over to that post for family-friendly jokes that will have kids {and kids-at-heart} giggling, any day of the year.  Plus you'll find free printables, because everyone can use a Mickey mouse-tache, even on April 2nd. ;)

Thanks for visiting today, friends!

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Chatting Over Chocolate! 
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I appreciate each comment, & Facebook "like"! They let me know that you enjoyed what you read, which makes it worth sharing! ;)

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Disney Themed April Fools' Day Fun!


Ready for some April Fools' Fun?!  You've come to the right place for family-friendly, magical madness!  I've rounded up some Disney themed pranks and jokes that will have kids of all ages laughing, loud and long and clear!

Friday, March 28, 2014

Five Loves on Friday!



HAPPY FRIDAY, friends!  Clap along if you feel like a room without a roof! ;)


1.  Platt Family's Day Off
Monday we all played hooky and enjoyed a fabulous family day together!  It was amazing to have a plan-free "bonus day" with the three people I adore most in the world!  *happy sigh*



2.  Congratulations to my dear friend Lindsey on the birth of her son!
Welcome to the world, precious baby boy!  We praise God for your safe arrival!! XxOo!




3.  Everything's Peachy!
I have been in love with my Market Peach candle from B&BW!  It makes me feel like Spring actually has arrived, even though it's been in the 30's here this week!




4.  Kate Spade Inspired Storage Boxes
This storage sweetness caught my eye on Pinterest this week and sent me swooning!  Kate Spade storage boxes currently run a whopping $54, but Christine at First Home Love Life created these look-a-like cuties for a fraction of the price! LOVE it!



*Wanna pin this tutorial?  Please click through the link above and do so directly from the source.  Thanks! ;)



Now available to watch FREE!  It's absolutely worth your time!  Check it out @NoahTheMovie.com!

*This is a 30-minute documovie.  This is NOT the Hollywood version of "Noah" starring Russell Crowe.  

I do NOT endorse the movie featuring Russell Crowe as "Noah" due to it's unbiblical content.


Thanks so much for visiting today!  Have a fabulous weekend!