Tag Archives: games

Making Your Outdoor Space The Perfect Hang Out

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Making Your Outdoor Space The Perfect Hang Out

Despite the weather being cold and gloomy, it is never too early to think about how to improve your outdoor space this spring and summer. Once the warm weather hits, it will be a lot easier to safely socialize outside which might make you even more motivated to turn your outdoor property into the best on the block. Try out some of these ideas and you will be back to seeing your friends in the warm summer’s breeze before you know it:

Lush greenery:

The first step to turning your yard into the place to be is to get your landscaping just right. Soft green grass, lovely foliage, and bright flowers are a must. It will make your space so inviting and will surely impress your guests when they come to visit. Some people, like my dad, are born with green thumbs. But, if gardening is not your strong suit, then enlist the help of landscaping Toronto for a front and back yard you can be proud of.

Comfortable outdoor furniture:

You will not want your friends to have to sit on the lawn when they stop by, so it’s important to get some nice outdoor furniture to rest on. Wicker chairs with plush cushions, lawn chairs, and benches are a great place to start. As long as you take care of the furniture, that is! Heavy rain and stifling heat can turn that once super comfortable cushion into a moldy disaster.

A fire pit:

There is nothing better than sitting around a bonfire with your friends so maybe this will be the year you invest in a fire pit. It will feel so good to do something “normal” again while being a lot safer outdoors. Can’t you just smell the bonfire and hear the crickets chirping now?

Outdoor activities:

Don’t forget the games! A nice, lush lawn is just begging for some bocce ball, croquet, and cornhole – all of which can be played social distance style. Invite a few friends and have yourselves a garden party. Don’t forget the tiny sandwiches and lemonade!

Made in the shade:

On especially sunny days, it will be crucial to have a spot to cool down in – whether that be a table with a great big umbrella, a Sun Setter, or a kiddie pool to soak your feet in. After all of this time spent indoors, I’m sure many of us will be in our gardens all day come summer time. If you find yourself retreating back inside when it gets too hot, a cool down space to continue to enjoy the great outdoors in will be a must when preparing your space.

In my opinion, winter has been flying by. And, in just a few short months, we will all be able to have the opportunity to socialize a bit more outside so make your outdoor space this summer the best ever!

Hosting A Fun Family Game Night

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Hosting A Fun Family Game Night

Many of us have exhausted a range of activities in the midst of societal lock down. We’ve baked, we’ve cooked, we’ve tried foreign cuisine, we’ve read, we’ve relaxed. So, it’s understandable if you’re feeling restless or irritable once your options for activities have been depleted. Not being able to ‘get out’ and enjoy the warm weather (by virtue of it being winter) also limits us a little more. You shouldn’t feel guilty for feeling irritable, as a lot of people are – myself included!

But what’s best for when you’re feeling irritable? To us, playing games and having fun with our family members can really help. Games help us act creatively, to compete in safe settings, and moreover, to have fun and a laugh. Hosting a fun game night with the family can be lovely then, and perhaps a weekly tradition.

But what sort of game nights could you have with the family? Your board game collection is a great place to start or you could order a couple of games online for something totally different. Why not also consider some of the following options?

Word & Quiz Games:

It can be fun to test your general knowledge or show off your Words With Friends skills with a word game. My personal favorite word game is Scrabble and using a descramble words tool can help you buff up before the games begin. Memory games, general trivia, and even games like timed ‘random Wikipedia journeys’ can be a great idea. These games will help you get a brain workout by the end of them! And who’s to say they aren’t competitive?

Video Game Parties:

If you have any video games consoles and games that offer cooperative play, you will be in for a blast. Four play Mario Party can be phenomenal, for instance, helping you enjoy a range of mini games across a players board, building stars, and dunking on others as you go. You’re sure to have fun with Mariokart, Keep Talking, And Nobody Explodes to show you what friendly competition is all about. We would also recommend Human Fall Flat and Fall Guys if you’re looking for something comical and cartoonish.

A Homespun Talent Show:

It can also be a wonderful idea to enjoy a homespun talent show, one that helps you feel connected, appreciated, and able to express your silliest joys. Perhaps you and your partner can do a magic show for the children, while they can lip sync and play air guitar to their favorite song. It sounds very silly, and it is! The goal is for everyone to be grinning from ear to ear. You can all judge and score each act and work up to the semi finals and finals over the course of a weekend. It might be a bit of work, but the outcome will be well worth it!

With this advice, we hope you can enjoy a fun game night with the family – and no doubt end up having a ball. You will feel much better afterwards too! 🙂

Featured Image By: Pexels

Holiday Haul: Sister & Family Edition

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Holiday Haul: Sister & Family Edition

Hello!! My sister, Kristen, her SO, Ramon, and sweet daughter, Valerie, are my best friends and I love being their fourth wheel more than anything. Being able to share so many holidays with Kristen and Ramon and now their daughter is always going to be special to me and this past Christmas was no exception. Miss Val made out like an adorable little bandit this Christmas and she was even able to unwrap some of her own gifts this year! Her “TT” had quite the haul herself, though, and I am so excited about the gifts I received from Val and her amazing parents. Check it out:

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Kristen texted me earlier in December asking me what I would like for Christmas and I told her that some new face masks to try out would be much appreciated. She took this idea and ran with it, gifting me two face masks by Formula 10.0.6. I am eager to test both masks out – particularly the self-warming clay mask. I used to get a self-warming mask from The Body Shop back in the day and it was one of my favorites. Speaking of favorites, I also got an awesome GUDETAMA lip balm and he is my favorite, lazy egg in the whole world. Don’t believe me? Check out my Facebook posts where I am constantly replying to people with Gudetama themed stickers! 😀

When my sister texted me, I didn’t tell her that I would really like a new pair of Express leggings too but she knows me well enough to have gotten me a pair, anyways. Kristen gifted me with leggings from Express last year and they are simply the best. I am so happy to have another pair because I wear my old ones literally all the time and, although they are still in great condition, it will be nice to have the option to alternate.

Pre-COVID, going to my favorite bars with Johnny and Kristen was always a treat and nine times out of ten, you could catch me drinking a Moscow Mule. I love them! And, with new copper mugs from Kristen and her fam, I’ll be able to make them at home with my go to recipe and not have to put them in coffee mugs like usual, lol. Great success!

Now, you might be wondering why in the heck Kristen gave the game of Guess Who? to me and Johnny and I’ll tell you why. A few months ago, we were all at chez parents and Kristen happened to bring her copy of the game over. We had many rousing rounds with my brother, Andrew, and it was a hoot. I also love the much more culturally diverse update of Guess Who? too! I think Johnny and I will get a kick out of playing it when we are stuck in the doldrums of feeling like there is “nothing” to do. 🙂

Kristen and her family were so generous this Christmas and I really am touched because these gifts are absolutely perfect for me. My sister knows me like the back of her hand and knew that the majority of what she gave me were things that I would like but never buy for myself and that, in itself, is the best gift of all. ❤

Which store has the best leggings? How do you make drinks from the bar at home? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Ballooning Around

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Ballooning Around

Hello! As of right now, there has been a sharp increase of COVID cases in Ohio. Myself and Johnny, both of our families, and all of my clients are hunkered down more than ever and the feeling of having “nothing to do” is particularly strong. As an independent provider for people with special needs, I am constantly trying to figure out ways to keep my clients entertained from the comfort of their home. This past month, I learned that something has simple as a balloon can be a whole lot of fun.

My most senior (and high risk) client’s brother celebrated a birthday in October, so we spent a lot of time making decorations and discussing birthdays of years’ past. The piece de resistance, however, was definitely when I blew up a ton of balloons the day before and the morning of the big day. My client loved selecting which color balloons he wanted and he wrote his brother’s name on every single one.

Once we had plenty of balloons ready, I asked my client if he wanted to hit it back and forth together and he was all for it. In fact, so much so that we have played “Balloon Bounce” pretty much every day that I’ve seen him since. This has been my “sneaky” way of incorporating a more, for lack of a better words, “active” activity into my client’s routine and he has so much fun that it doesn’t even feel like a little work out.

We have dubbed ourselves the Balloon Bounce International League and we have nicknames too! While we’re hitting the balloon, we always play our favorites tunes and it brings my client back to playing volleyball in the Special Olympics. My only rule? Placing items that could get hit throughout his room elsewhere so nothing breaks!

Balloon Bounce is one of the most simple past times I think I have ever come up with and it really is a blast. All it takes it a little creativity and imagination and even the smallest activities can become a new daily favorite. Hey, I’ll take it!

How do you get creative with activities at home? How did you celebrate any recent birthdays? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Featured Image By: Deeana Creates From Pexels

Early Christmas Shopping

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Early Christmas Shopping

Hello!! I know a ton of you are reading this title with a slight eye roll because Christmas is far away but yes… I did start shopping already. I promise it’s for good reason too because I have a ton of people to shop for. Not only do I have all of my family but I also have Johnny, his parents, my clients, and a new niece and nephew to share in the holiday spirit with.

I decided that I would like to knock out at least a couple of people on my list per month so that I am not stuck with a giant bill come December. I also feel a huge sense of relief when I am that much closer to purchasing all of the gifts I plan to put under the tree.

This past month, I decided to spoil my little niece rotten and I am so stoked about one of the items I ordered. Those with small children to shop for might be interested in this ultra fun and creative gift too:

Several months ago, I saw this inflatable, washable easel for finger painting advertised on Facebook and I thought it was such a fabulous idea. I could picture my sister and brother in law setting it up for my niece in their backyard on a nice summer day and having a ball with it. My niece will be older than two by the time it gets warm enough to use it and I can’t wait to see the masterpieces that she comes up with.

I figured that my niece is pretty well stocked for activities that she can use now – you should see her playroom! So, I wanted to purchase gifts that would be fun for her to use as she gets older. Her inflatable easel is what I am particularly excited for but I know Johnny is most looking forward to the tiny guitar he plans on getting her. It’s never too early to start lessons with her uncle! ❤

When do you normally start holiday shopping? Do you have a lot of people to shop for? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Fun & (Video) Games

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Fun & (Video) Games

Hi! Johnny and I celebrated our one year anniversary on September first – hurray! Pre-Johnny, I never played video games too often. Of course, I played my fair share of Mario Party and Super Smash Bros. back in the day. I was also addicted to Diablo II on the ol’ desktop computer. Besides from those, that’s about as far as my video game expertise goes. Until Johnny and I started dating that is! Before, all I had was a lowly GameCube and Wii – now we collectively have a Switch and a PlayStation 3.

In recent quarantine times, I developed a huge taste for Animal Crossing and try to check in on my island at least every other day. I also love playing throwback Mario games on the Switch’s Super Nintendo Arcade. Other than that, though? Nothing really. Until Johnny and I exchanged gifts for our one year that is!

For part of my gift (Tune in later for more on our celebration!), Johnny ceremonially turned the Switch on and displayed on the screen was both Paper Mario: The Origami King and Diablo III: Reaper Of Souls. I absolutely LOVE the Paper Mario games and have been telling Johnny I want to try The Origami King for the past few months now. I also haven’t played Diablo III in over half a decade so that was just the cherry on top of a perfect gift.

Johnny and I recently watched an excellent documentary on Netflix called High Score. The series was about seven or eight episodes long and it discussed the evolution of video games from the old school arcades to present day. I think the video game bug definitely bit the both of us while we bingewatched High Score and I can see it reflected in my anniversary gift – I’m so not mad about it though!

In fact, I think I shall dub our one year as the Fun & Games anniversary because I, too, got something entertainment based for Johnny. That’s right, I got him the Millennium Falcon LEGO set from Star Wars. No, not the crazy expensive sets – however, we decided our five year will be the Upgrade the Millennium Falcon anniversary! Johnny put his space craft together in one evening and I am already looking forward to more time with Paper Mario and Diablo, lol. I’m looking forward to more time with my MAN the most and here’s to our one year together. ❤

Which anniversary did you and your partner celebrate this year? How did you celebrate? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Escape Room Game EPIC FAIL

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Escape Room Game EPIC FAIL

Hello! For my birthday this past June, my brother and his family treated me to a bunch of goodies including this here room escape game for me and Johnny to play:

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I have been eager to play this since it was gifted to me because I have always wanted to go to a real life room escape game. I used to LOVE playing the escape room computer games back in the day and I’d like to think that I would do pretty well for myself. In fact, that’s what I thought about this at home escape room too. Johnny and I are smart cookies and I was confident that we could solve the puzzles and escape the secret lab. Unfortunately, I was dead wrong.

Johnny and I finally decided to attempt this game when we were dogsitting for the weekend because the house we were in was way bigger than our apartment and we needed room to spread things out. The basic gist? Solve ten consecutive riddles with the help of hints if you need and escape the secret lab.

We initially started out strongly in our attempt to escape the lab. Of course, we had to use ALL of the hints to solve the first three or four riddles we completed but we solved them, lol. All of this took us at least an hour but, then, things started getting more complicated.

After our small successes with the “easier” riddles, they became more and more difficult to solve. We were getting hints that we had no idea what to do with and, after a few drinks, let’s just say things got very murky. Johnny and I puzzled over the last clue that we attempted for forty-five minutes bare minimum and then gave up to go watch Impractical Jokers.

I’m not going to lie, I was a little disappointed that we couldn’t solve the game but we completely lost all of our momentum and there was no way we were getting it back. Honestly, I was impressed at how much we even accomplished because it was really hard – the level three and a half difficulty wasn’t lying!

I don’t know how inclined I am to play another at home room escape game again. After two hours of working through the riddles, we were still so far away from solving it that it kind of lost its fun. I think we will stick to our preferred Trivial Pursuit from now on but if you’re feeling adventurous and have a knack for riddle solving, then an Escape Room game might be right for you! 😀

What have been your experiences with room escape games? What is your favorite game to play at home? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

What Have I Been Playing?

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What Have I Been Playing?

Hello!! Johnny and I have spent plenty of time in quarantine watching TV shows and movies. We also enjoy documentaries or just pulling some music up on YouTube to listen to while we chit chat. And, I’d be a liar if I said we weren’t playing hella video games on the Nintendo Switch! I am not a huge fan of the shooter games like Johnny but I have definitely been getting down with the following:

Animal Crossing:

You guys already know how much I love Animal Crossing and my heart grows fonder with every single super fun update. For example, starting on July third, you could purchase a wet suit from the store and go swimming! That’s not all, though, because not only can you take a dip but you can also go diving for undersea critters – I’ve even found a few pearls. 😀

Johnny and I have gotten our money’s worth out of this game and then some. It’s always kind of exciting to check in on our island and see what new bugs and fish have made Dingusburg their home. I especially like fishing for sharks!

Trivial Pursuit:

Johnny and I purchased a trivia game from the Nintendo store for twenty bucks and it was well worth it. Not only have we enjoyed putting our knowledge to the test against each other but it is also very fun to play with others. My siblings love it and we spent a lot of our time during our staycation pairing up into teams and playing against each other.

The game features traditional trivia categories like Sports, History, Science, and Entertainment but it is definitely nontraditional when it comes to the answers. You have to earn your pie pieces through a series of different, quick draw formats and we have yet to have any repeat questions so it has remained interesting. Highly recommend for a random knowledge based change of pace.

Super Smash Bros.:

I have been a fan of SSB since childhood and remember always playing as Captain Falcon against my brothers on the N64. We have all of the Super Smash games for each system but primarily play Ultimate on the Switch. There are so many amazing stages and characters to pick from and Johnny and I have the best time playing as total randoms and figuring out how to fight with them.

Normally, I like to play as Pit but I do change it up with Captain Falcon, Link, Joker, Hero, and TERRY. Lol, Johnny and I really love playing SSB Ultimate with my brother, Andrew. He and Johnny are both formidable opponents so it makes victory even sweeter!

Mario Party:

Finally, you can never go wrong with a little Mario Party! Johnny and I don’t have Super Mario Party for the Switch but we have all of the games for the GameCube and Wii. Sometimes, when we’re feeling bored at home we’ll turn a Mario Party on and kill an hour or so. If it’s a lazy weekend afternoon, there ain’t nothing better than throwing back a few glasses of white wine and firing up the ol’ GameCube. The mini games are fun, the boards are exciting, and it’s a complete classic. We usually end up laughing the entire time. 🙂

Which video games have you been playing recently? How do you keep yourself occupied in quarantine? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Animal Crossing Outdoor Fun

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Animal Crossing Outdoor Fun

Hello!! Children, teenagers, and adults alike have all been getting super into Animal Crossing during this quarantine. And, Johnny and I just so happen to be the adults who are super into it, lol. The charmingly simple game of building a prosperous island has captured many a hearts and I always look forward to when I can fish or catch some bugs for a while on our island of Dingusburg (Johnny’s idea, haha).

Recently, at work, I was outside with my client and her nieces and we decided to do some real life Animal Crossing of our own after we saw a big, beautiful butterfly flitting about the back yard. One of the girlies grabbed her butterfly net and the chase was on. We all took our tries at catching it and had no such luck. The butterfly flew away but it was still fun!

If you have little ones with some pent up energy from being cooped in, how about some Animal Crossing fun of your own? Set up a scavenger hunt outside or grab some butterfly nets and toy fishing rods and have an adventure in your back yard. Animal Crossing is all about enjoying the simple things, like planting flowers, picking fruit, and catching bugs… All of which can easily be done from your yard!

Still need some inspiration? Message me on Facebook at Sarah Mushenheim for my friend code and come visit Dingusburg. Then, bring a little of our island life into your activities with your kids for the day. 🙂

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Which games have you been hooked on in quarantine? What are some of your favorite activities with your kids? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Happy Birthday To Me Haul: Brother & Fam Edition

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Happy Birthday To Me Haul: Brother & Fam Edition

Hello! Lil Red’s 26th birthday has came and went and it was as to be expected during a global pandemic, lol. Of course, family time was amazing and it was so much fun to celebrate both mine and my boyfriend’s birthday within such close vicinity to each other (His is June 1st and mine is the 7th).

I always believe that it’s nice to receive gifts, but it’s especially nice when I haven’t been “shopping shopping” in over three months! So, needless to say, I was very excited when this little haul arrived from my brother, sister-in-law, and nephew in the mail:

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For my birthday, I was gifted with a new mocha and coffee bean body scrub, a Taco Bell gift card (ayyy), and an escape room game to play at home. The scrub by Tree Hut smells absolutely delicious and I am obsessed with their bath and body care products so it was such a perfect treat.

The gifts from my brother and his family also provided Johnny and I with a quarantine date night. Seeing if we can escape from a secret lab sounds like a fun and different way to spend the evening and when have I ever said no to Taco Bell?! I have always wanted to visit a real life escape room because I’m an avid fan of the computer games. Unfortunately, an actual excursion to an escape room won’t happen soon but an interactive at home version is a close second! ❤

Have you ever been to an escape room? What was your experience like? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah