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**Disclosure- This post is sponsored by Babbleboxx on behalf of Justice. I have received products described in this post,in addition to monetary compensation in exchange for my honest opinion. Affiliate links also may be present in this post*** Back to school is right around the corner, and will be here before we know it.

With the hustle and bustle of getting ready for a new school year, one of the most important things that our preteen daughters need to take on the year is often overlooked.

Confidence.

Yes, I know. Your daughter has ALWAYS done well in school and never seemed like she had a lack in self confidence. As she is nearing those dreaded teenage years however, it is nice to know that with a few extra steps, you can send her back to school with a spring in her step and a smile not soon to fade.

So what are these magic steps to increase her confidence level?

Nail her Hairstyle

You know how amazing you feel after a trip to the salon? Pretty freaking amazing, right?

Now translate said excitement onto your daughter.

A new haircut can go a long way in boosting the confidence of a preteen girl. Even just a trim can leave her feeling refreshed and ready to take on the world. Let her take a spin through the latest haircuts for her age group and make an evening of mother/daughter haircuts!

No time for the salon? Take a dive through the hundreds of hair tutorials on Pinterest or Youtube! You may just find your daughters new favorite up do, and discover your sanity in knowing that she can do this one herself.

A Backpack to Match her Style

One thing I have learned since my daughter began school, it is that a cool backpack is everything! Seriously, we have spent WAY too long in the backpack section of entirely too many stores trying to find the “perfect” one.

This year, Addi was able to find perfection and style in her personalized shimmer initial backpack from Justice. This bag was made to keep up with the spirit and adventure of your preteen, and has the pocket space to keep up with all of her gear.

As far as backpacks for girls go, this bag was built for use with its comfy padded straps and its sturdy zip closure. I was stoked to see it would hold up to Addi’s wear and tear. She on the other hand, was much more excited about the sparkle this bag provided! Not to mention the fuzzy pom keychain that made her squeal! Plus, the look on her face when she realized it was personalized with her initial? Perfection!

You can get the initial backpack and all of the coordinating accessories from justice.com, or shop the 13 initials available in stores!

Accessories to Accent her Personality

What is a girl without her accessories?

I do not know about you, but my daughter tends to be most confident when she is prepared. Justice helped to prepare her for any situation with their matching school accessories that make back to school shopping such a breeze!

Addi is now equip for taking her lunch with her matching initial lunchbox, or eating at school with her coordinating wristlet! She also has a daily reminder of her FEARLESS strength with her matching pencil pouch.

I mean, can you get more perfect than that?

Graphic Tee’s that put a Smile on her Face

With crazy nerves over the first day of school, stressing over the perfect outfit can be a major bummer. Justice made picking out Addi’s outfit for the first day of school super easy with their adorable graphic tees!

With girls tops this cute, your daughter’s smile will shine bright, and her confidence will soar! Plus, boasting positive statements, they are great conversation starters for your child and her friends.

Win, win!

A Message that Speaks to her Heart

The last way to ensure your preteen girls confidence is soaring during back to school is with something that cannot be bought.

Sending your little girl back to school with a message of strength, encouragement and inspiration is a must for any mom. Whether it is through a conversation, a quote you write on her hand, or even a note in her lunch on the first day. Kind, empowering words can do so much to give your little miss a huge confidence boost on her first day!

No matter how you send the message along with her, you are guaranteed to have it as a great conversation starter once she arrives back home after an exciting first day. So Pinterest away mom’s, this one is on you!

Now that you know my secrets to boosting Addi’s back to school confidence level (with a little help from her favorite store) what are your back to school tips?

Is there anything special that you do for your kiddos, or that you ensure they have before they depart for their first day back? Let me know in the comments below, and happy back to school prepping!

Looking for your own super cute school supplies and girls tops? Shop Justice.com by clicking here.

The post Simple Steps to boost your Preteen Daughters Confidence for the New School Year appeared first on TheCrazySAHM.

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CBD Oil is finally legalized, but what does that mean for you as a mom?

You have heard about people taking it for all kinds of reasons. Stress, weight loss, pain. But does it work? How do you use it? And since it comes from the same plant as marijuana, this has to mean you are about to relive That 70’s Show, right?

***Disclaimer- I received this product for free from Moms Meet (momsmeet.com) to use and post my honest opinions. Compensation for this post was provided and this page may contain affiliate links.***

Recently, I was given the opportunity to review PlusCBD Oil products in collaboration with MomsMeet.com. During this time I not only used CBD oil products, but I also conducted a lot of my own research regarding CBD. While I am no expert in the area, I did learn some valuable information that I hope will help to educate mom’s everywhere on this wonderful resource!

It does not, I repeat DOES NOT, get you high

One of the common misperceptions of CBD oil is that since it is derived from the marijuana plant, it MUST get you high. I mean, that is why it is so popular now that it is legal, right?

Wrong!

Cannabidoil(CBD) is a phytocannabinoid that is non-psychotoxic. What does this mean to you? It means that CBD does not produce the euphoric feelings that people get from smoking marijuana. Instead, CBD oil is beneficial to nearly every biological process in both humans and animals.

On the same page, CBD oil is also non addictive. (Though you will want to take it every day once you see how great your body feels!)

It is amazing for your body on several levels

Upon receiving my CBD oil samples, the research began. What is CBD oil good for? What can it help with? Is it good for mom’s?

What I found was amazing, and slightly unbelievable. CBD oil can literally be healing in just about every biological system in your body! How is this? CBD interacts with our innate internal system called the Endocannabinoid System (ECS). This is something that was just discovered in 1992, yet has already made strides in helping to educate us further on the vast positive effects that CBD can have on your body!

It was found at this time, that the ECS are known to modulate and influence a variety of physiological systems, including appetite, pain, inflammation, thermoregulation, intraocular pressure, sensation, muscle control, energy balance, metabolism, sleep health, stress responses, motivation/reward, mood, and memory. Due to the fact that CBD interacts with the ECS, CBD is able to have a positive effect on all of these different areas of the body.

As for being good for mom’s, I am here to tell you, anything that helps with energy, sleep, stress and motivation is right up my alley!

Since I started CBD oil, I have noticed changes in all four of these areas. My energy levels have had me up and accomplishing my to-do lists and beyond. I am going to sleep sooner, and sleeping much more soundly. My stress, while it should be escalating with my first year 4-H member having fair rapidly approaching, is lower than it has been in a long while. Any my motivation? Well let’s just say my laundry is actually caught up.

I know, right?

It is all natural, and great for the environment

While I am not one of those “all natural, all the time” mom’s (kudos to those of you who are!), I do feel great when I am able to use products for myself and my family that do not contain a ton of additives and things I cannot pronounce. Therefore, knowing that CBD oil is plant derived and all natural totally toots my “I’m not adding crap to my body for once” horn.

Not only that, but the hemp plant that CBD oil is derived from has over 25,000 (you read that right) documented uses! From food to fuel, hemp has a ton of uses for people all over the world.

Also, hemp plants leave the soil where it is planted in better shape then it was before it was planted. This adds nutrients back into the soil for other plants to grow.

It is available for use in several different forms

When you hear the term CBD oil, it is pretty well assumed that the product you will receive will be an oil, right?

Boy, is that wrong.

Upon receiving my samples from Plus CBD oil, I was introduced to 5 different ways that CBD oil can be used. Capsules (my favorite), gel caps, balms, flavored sprays, and oil drops. I mean, there is seriously something for everyone.

Due to my crazy busy mom life, the capsules quickly became a personal favorite. The gel capsules are a great way to get high intensity oil support in your diet, and were easy to swallow. The peppermint spray was actually really refreshing! (Once you move past the fact that you are spraying oil in your mouth.) I loved using this spray as a “pick me up” throughout the day to adjust my dosage! The oil drops were super simple to add into my favorite drinks, and the flavor was easily blended. And the balm? It was out of this world easy to apply!

The perfect dose is different for everyone

While all CBD oil products that you can purchase come with recommended dosages, each person’s dosage may differ.

For instance, I found out quickly that handling the “mom stress” of my crazy kiddos often begins with one CBD capsule of the morning. By late afternoon, a quick spray of the peppermint oil spray is just the pick me up that my body needs to finish chasing kiddos around the house.

While this seems to be a great balance for me, what may work for you will be different. It is recommended to start small, and work your way into CBD oil products to decide what works best for you.

CBD oil may not be for all moms. Hopefully however, this gives you some additional information to help you decide if it is something you should try!

If you are looking to try CBD for the first time, I highly recommend PlusCBD Oil products. Not only are their products great, but a quick visit to pluscbdoil.com can provide you with the answers to most all of your CBD related questions. Plus, when you shop at pluscbdoil.com and use the code “momsmeet17” you will get 15% off of your online order!

Have you used CBD oil products? Let me know your thoughts below!

The post CBD Oil: What I learned from use as a Busy, Stay at Home Mom appeared first on TheCrazySAHM.

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Continuing my families tour of the Indiana Cave Trail, we found ourselves traveling to the national landmark known as Marengo Cave.

Now I know what you are thinking, a cave is a cave. You cannot be more wrong my friend.

Upon pulling into Marengo Cave, I was immediately flooded with childhood memories of visiting the landmark when I was just a kid. I remembered the being speechless throughout the cave, because how could something that beautiful exist beneath our feet?

Honestly, during this trip, these same memories started flooding back! Only now, I was able to see the wonder of the caverns through the eyes of my three children. My three babies who were doing everything in their power to take in all that Marengo Cave had to offer.

Two Tours sure to Dazzle

Setting this cave apart from the other caverns on the Indiana cave trail, Marengo Cave offers two separate and very unique walking tours. While either tour is sure to please those in your group, it is very doable to accomplish both tours in one trip! Plus, you can save up to $11 dollars by purchasing a combo ticket, and I am all about saving the dollars.

Another notable piece of info on the tours, my 4 year old easily accomplished both of these on foot! (Back to back even.) The path through the cave is nice and open, and allowed for him to easily navigate the tour without becoming overly tired.

Word of the wise, please make sure your kiddos use the bathroom before exploring the caves. There is not a bathroom accessible along the tour, and Brendan (who already has a nervous bladder) spent the last 10 minutes of the second tour arguing with me over why he could not pee in the puddles in the cave.

Boys, right?

The Crystal Palace

This 40 minute cave tour leads you through cave rooms, beautifully decorated in formations as only nature could accomplish. As is the same on any cave tour, touching the cave walls/formations is not permitted as it can destroy the ever-growing cave. This rule is cast aside however in a couple spots on this tour, where my kids (ok, and myself) are able to touch a previously broken formation, as well as feeling the water that is descending from a live drip!

Continuing on the tour, the trail winds THROUGH the cave formations, allowing you to pass between pillars and columns. You will experience the cave as the two children who discovered it back in 1883 did, using nothing but the light of a single candle. Not excited yet? This tour is named for the breathtakingly beautiful Palace Room, and is one popular location where weddings took place in the cave. By far, it is my favorite cave room that I have seen to date.

The Dripstone Trail

If you are up for a bit longer of a tour, the 60 minute Dripstone Trail tour is sure to please! Following the cave path along the same route that the river the

created the caverns did years ago, you will find yourself in awe of the different formations on display in this tour. From stalagmites and stalagmites, to old excavation sites and more soda straws than you can count, this tour was filled with something for everyone.

My kids were particularly impressed by the “penny ceiling”, where they were able to throw coins at the ceiling of a cavern room in an effort to make them stick among the thousands of other coins stuck there. Also along this tour, you were able to see where church services, weddings, and even plays were presented in the caverns in the time before air conditioning! I mean, can you imagine?

Gem Mining

Find yourself wondering what you will do with the time between tours? Never fear! Marengo Cave boasts not one, but two sluice locations on site where your kids (and you too if you choose!), can mine fore their own gems or fossils.

Whether the weather is sunshine and perfection, or slush and ice, Marengo Cave is able to cater to all! With one sluice indoors and the other out, families can bond over gem classification any time of year. Also, Marengo offers gem bags at multiple price points making this an affordable activity for any budget.

Tour Guides who Inspire

Every cave tour has a tour guide, but our guide at Marengo Cave was seriously AMAZING!

Introducing himself to us by the name “Cowboy”, I may have been a bit worried at first. Cowboy did nothing short of dazzling our entire group however! Not only was Cowboy completely passionate about this cave, as well as caves in general, he was funny and personable, which added that much more to the tour. He even pulled Addi up to walk with him throughout the tour so that he could answer every question she had. (Thank goodness, because otherwise we might still be there.)

When I thanked our guide for being so patient and engaging with the kids, his answer was one that will forever stick with me. “I want kids to be excited about caves, and I want to help build that. Their excitement will build the passion for the next generation of cave explorers.”

Seriously guys, this hit my soul! If you have the ability to tour with Cowboy on your trip to Marengo Cave, I highly suggest it. You will not regret it!

A Gift Shop FULL of Resources

This is one of those rare times you will catch me telling you to visit a gift shop with all of your children. Marengo Cave’s gift shop is one for the books though!

Hosting everything from old time cookbooks and cave exploration guides, to large agate slabs, you can find so many treasures here. After leaving this location, the gift shop seriously has me trying to justify adding an agate slab to my home decor! Not only that, but even the ladies who were running the gift shop were highly educated regarding the caverns and the surrounding area. This made finding out the answers to those pesky questions I could not think of while on the tour a piece of cake.

Property Extra’s Cave Exploring

Find yourself itching for more after accomplishing both cave tours?

Great news!
Marengo Cave offers 5 tours (four of which are for ages 10+) that will get you down and dirty exploring the caves by headlamp! These tours are very reasonably priced (honestly, much more affordable that I figured they would be) and they allow you to see the cave in a different light than you would if you were just on the walking tour. While I was unable to do one of these tour’s due to having the little’s with me. I am seriously considering sending Addi and her dad back after Addi turns 10 in August!

Want to find out more about the tours and how to book yours? Click here!

The Crawl

Kiddos want to see what it is like to explore the caves like a cave explorer, yet don’t hit want the mud or wet? No problem! They can still visit The Crawl and get their exploring on!

Kids 8+ years of age can visit The Crawl, and travel through a man made cave exploration simulator to get a feel of what cave exploration would be like. Tours are available for only $3, and at the end of your child’s tour, they will still be as clean as when they started! #MomWin

Canoeing

Just five minutes down the road from Marengo Cave, you will find Cave Country Canoes on the beautiful Blue River! Ages 3 and up can go spend half a day, or a full day exploring the river by canoe and simply taking in the sights.

The scenic views, limestone ledges and Indiana wildlife will thrill and excite your family, leaving you with memories above ground to last a lifetime.

Camping and Cabins

Looking for a place to spend the night after a busy day of caving? Be sure to check out the Marengo cabins and campground!

With electric camping sites, and spacious one room cabins at very affordable pricing located in the campground just off the cave parking area, you will not have to go far for accommodations! While we stayed in nearby Corydon, IN (more details below) I did check out the campground and would be more than excited to camp there in the future!

Accommodations

While traveling through the Indiana Cave Trail, my crew stayed in the Hampton Inn by Hilton in nearby historic Corydon, IN. The hotel provided my kids with a much needed swim following a warm day of spelunking through the caves. The hotel also boasts wonderful accommodations that were enjoyed by all!

The staff was beyond amazing, and very friendly. Also, the complimentary breakfast had something for everyone in our group to enjoy! I cannot thank them enough for accommodating our crazy, and would definitely stay with them in the future!

You can make your own reservations with the Hampton Inn in Corydon by visiting their website here.

Seriously though, if you are planning a trip to Southern Indiana, Marengo Cave is one that NEEDS to make it onto your list. Not only will your kids have an experience that they are not soon to forget, but you will leave with family memories unique to those you make above ground!

While you are in the area visiting Marengo Cave, be sure to check out the other caves on the Indiana Cave Trail! Visit all four and you will score yourself an awesome t-shirt. You can learn more about Indiana Caverns here, and Squire Boone Caverns here.

***Disclaimer- I was provided overnight accommodations in nearby Corydon, IN, as well at tickets for my family and I to experience the cave in exchange for this post. Rest assured, all opinions and observations are my own.***

The post Marengo Cave: A Mystifying Experience for your Kids appeared first on TheCrazySAHM.

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This post is sponsored by Gerber®, but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

As babies grow, many parents find themselves overwhelmed with the topic of baby nutrition. What foods are safe to feed my baby? How to I diversify my baby’s palate at such a young age? How in the world am I supposed to meet all of baby’s nutritional needs in just 3 meals per day?

I mean, did you know that babies natural iron stores may be completely depleted by age 4-6 months?

As changes have been made over the years in the way that we care for our babies, developments have also been made to change the way that we meet baby’s nutritional needs as well.

Alas, Gerber, a name moms have known and trusted for years, has yet again blessed us with a feeding solution sure to make moms and babies alike happy.
Gerber infant cereals make a perfect first food for baby, and is able to be consumed starting around 6 months of age. Along with Iron, Gerber Infant Cereal has other essential nutrients such as Zinc, Calcium, Vitamin C, E and six B Vitamins. Plus, it makes a great supplement to breastmilk, great news for all of you nursing mama’s out there!

But now that you have found this great product, how do you use it in your day to day? I mean, what ways can we feed baby Gerber infant cereal to ensure that he/she enjoys the product to its fullest?

By the Label

The first, and most obvious way to enjoy Gerber infant cereals, is to prepare the product by the label directions. Single-grain infant cereals (like this one) are an ideal first solid food to check for food sensitivities and help develop baby’s eating skills.

Simply mix 4-5 tbsp. of breastmilk or formula with 1 tbsp. of Gerber baby cereal, and you are ready to go!

Plus, since Gerber infant cereal is Non-GMO and made with no artificial colors or flavors, you can be confident you are making a great choice in what you are feeding your baby.

Mix with their Favorite Gerber Baby Food

A great way to get more baby cereal into baby’s diet, is to add it in with their favorite baby food! From peas and carrots to apples and peaches, Ellie loves the texture that a little bit of Gerber infant cereal added to her favorites. I love that I am meeting all of my baby’s nutritional needs.

Did you know that just two servings of Gerber infant cereal meet 100% of your baby’s daily iron needs? This sounds like a great way to switch it up and get baby eating more!

Add a Little Applesauce

Everybody loves a little applesauce in their diet. Ellie’s love for applesauce has been deep seeded from a very, very early age. I found that another great way to work Gerber infant cereal into her diet, was to add a bit of it into her applesauce!

Right now, your little one needs iron to help support healthy brain development! Adding it into their everyday first foods helps not only to satisfy baby’s nutritional needs, but to do so while diversifying their diet.

Whip it up with a Bit of Yogurt

Introducing yogurt to Ellie has been so much easier with Gerber infant cereal. Yogurts formulated for baby are often runny. Ellie moved quickly past the need for her yogurt to be such a liquid consistency. I didn’t feel her system was ready for a full fledged yogurt.

Gerber made me feel confident as a mother as I added a small amount of Gerber infant cereal to her yogurt, making it easier for her to eat.

Get Really Creative and Start Baking

Call me crazy, but Ellie is always itching to try new foods on a regular basis. While I am excited for this new stage, I am also concerned I could be missing essential nutrients in her diet. Therefore, I find myself easily substituting Gerber infant cereal for oatmeal in different recipes. Ellie gets to try new foods, and I ensure I am still meeting my baby’s nutritional needs.

The family favorite currently, is this Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Quickbread. In place of the rolled oats in the recipe, I simply substituted 3/4 cup of Gerber infant cereal and BAM. A recipe that was new and healthy for my baby! Plus, I totally fed it to the rest of the family and they LOVED it!

Want to know more about how to meet your baby’s nutritional needs?

Find out how Gerber infant cereal can help you to meet your baby’s nutritional needs by clicking here. Ready to go out and pick some up for your baby? Simply head to your local Walmart for the best selection! While there, download the Ibotta app and use the Gerber infant cereal deal to save a few extra dollars!

New to Ibotta? Find out how I used the app to shop Disney World for FREE by clicking here!

The post Ensuring Baby’s Nutritional Needs with Gerber appeared first on TheCrazySAHM.

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***Disclaimer- My family was provided entry to the caverns and nearby accommodations in exchange for this post. Rest assured, all opinions expressed in this post are my own. This post also may contain affiliate links. This simply means that if you make a purchase through one of these links, I may be compensated at no additional cost to you.***

Cave adventures and novices alike, get ready for a summer experience that will blow your kids minds! Indiana Caverns will be a summer activity your kiddos will not soon forget.

Upon conducting my search for fun, yet educational experiences for my family to embark on this summer, I found the Indiana Caverns. While this cave system is a fairly recent discovery in Indiana in comparison to other caves in the area, it offered more than it’s fair share of adventure.

From mining your own gemstones, to getting up close and personal with fossil excavation sites in the caverns. There is so much to do and see on the property! Need a taste of the activities available before you plan your own trip?

Check these out!

Education before Entry

Have your kids ever wondered how caves were formed? Maybe you yourself need to brush up on your cave knowledge.

Either way, you are sure to be impressed by the vast array of knowledge that Indiana Caverns provides. Before you ever begin the cave tour, you are invited to view a film explaining the history of the caverns, including how they were created.

Following the story of the creation of the caverns, you also get to learn about the caverns discovery. This was especially exciting to my oldest, who related the discovery story to the original cavern entrance shown on the tour.

Note to Moms: This video may not be suited well to small children who do not sit well for videos. While it is only about 10 minutes’ worth of screen time, the video is not a cartoon, and thus may not appeal to all littles. Luckily, the staff is super accommodating! There is place outside of the viewing area where you and your little can await the rest of your party to begin the tour if your little is not in the mood for a movie.

Breathtaking Cave Formations

Upon entering the caverns, prepare to have the sights take your breath away! As the lights are turned on throughout the cavern tour, I literally heard the gasps from my 9 year old, and found myself in just as much awe.

All of your usual cave formations can be found within the Indiana Caverns. From stalagmites and stalactites, to columns and draperies. My children loved testing their newfound cave formation knowledge as we progressed through the tour.

One of my entire group’s favorite sights was a formation called Big Bone Mountain! This mountain underground was absolutely unreal, and something that your kids will be talking about for days. Also on the tour was a waterfall that got both of my older kids talking, and even had Ellie giggling from her Tula.

Overall, the open panoramic views of the Indiana Caverns stunned my kiddos and left me fascinated. As more of is cave system, the largest in Indiana, continues to be discovered, I will be excited to see how this tour expands in the future!

Best of Both Worlds

During our tour of the Indiana Cave Trail, my 4 year old was beyond enthused to get to go on a boat ride.

I on the other hand, was beyond nervous.

A 4 year old (along with my 9 year old, and Tula bound 1 year old), on a boat, on an underground river, in a cave. Yes, this sounds like fun.

Great news moms!
Indiana Caverns has the perfect mix of walking AND boat ride during their tour. This allowed me to get over my fear of putting all of these children onto a boat underground. Also, Brendan and Addi were DAZZLED by the sights of the caverns by boat! The river is brilliantly lit by blue lights enabling you to see through the water as you float through the cavern.

Also, for you mama’s out there who have safety concerns, get ready. The staff expertly balance the pontoons that carry you throughout your cavern journey during loading. They also make unloading a breeze by unloading in pairs. Staff are quick to point out life preservers upon loading, and enforce all safety rules throughout the ride. (Hubby’s, this means you WILL get called out for trying to rock the boat.)

Fossils, Fossils and More Fossils

One of the amazing qualities of this tour vs. the others on the Indiana Cave Tour were the amount of fossils that you see! Indiana Caverns hosts several fossilized species in the caves, and allows you to see some of these up close.

Also along the tour, you are able to see fossil excavation sites up close! While my children have seen fossils at the Indianapolis Children’s Museum, here they were able to see where these fossils come from!

Plus, did you know that the Children’s Museum even houses one of the fossilized skulls from the Indiana Caverns?

I love it when a lesson comes full circle!

Added Extras

Gem Mining

While we were on site at Indiana Caverns, my oldest two kiddos were able to try their hand at gemstone mining!

Addi was thrilled to sluice her way through the dirt and sand to discover beautiful gemstones. She then was classified them according to the card provided with her mining bag.

Brendan on the other hand, was excited to play in the water while finding “pretty rocks” as he called them.

Interpretive Trail and Nature Trail

On the property, there are two trails that allow you and your kiddos to get out and run around!

During our visit, we went on the interpretive trail, and boy, was there a lot to learn! During the experience, you visit several sites on an open trail. Here, you are able to read from signs at each site to further learn about the area. Addison was able to read the signs aloud (with a little help) and we all were able to learn some great information.

While we did not have time for the nature trail, we were informed that the trail promised a peaceful, short walk in the Indiana outdoors.

Cavern of the Sabertooth

This experience was a unique one, and one that I had not seen before! For a few extra bucks, your kiddos are able to experience what it is like for real cave explorers. They get to strap on a hardhat, grab a flashlight, and go spelunking through manmade tunnels.

If you or your husband are feeling especially limber, you are able to join the kids on this adventure!

While your little ones are exploring, you get to relax on the beautiful patio area found at the mouth of this small cave. Doesn’t get much better than that!

Deep Darkness Challenge

If you just cannot get enough of the caves life, you NEED to look into the Deep Darkness Challenge! While this one is probably not for the kiddos (experiences start at age 14+) this could make for a totally unique date.

Four hours of cave exploring will take you through the cave in an experience much different than the day to day cave tour. You will get to crawl, climb and kayak your way through an unforgettable cave experience.

Sounds like a rather exciting date experience, no?

**For those interested in the Deep Darkness Challenge, keep in mind that this tour does require a special reservation! While tours can be conducted 7 days a week, reservations must be made and paid in full at least 10 days in advanced.***

Accommodations

While traveling through the Indiana Cave Trail, my crew stayed in the Hampton Inn by Hilton in nearby historic Corydon, IN. The hotel provided my kids with a much needed swim following a warm day of spelunking through the caves. The hotel also boasts wonderful accommodations that were enjoyed by all!

The staff was beyond amazing, and very friendly. Also, the complimentary breakfast had something for everyone in our group to enjoy! I cannot thank them enough for accommodating our crazy, and would definitely stay with them in the future!

You can make your own reservations with the Hampton Inn in Corydon by visiting their website here.

All in all, my family loved our trip to Indiana Caverns, and hope to return in the near future! The caves were the perfect escape from the heat of the day, (a consistent 56 degrees year round), and the property offered so many fun activities.

Are you planning to visit Indiana Caverns in the near future? Have you been there and have some tips to share of your own? Let me know in the comments below!

Want to learn about other caves on the Indiana Cave Trail? Check out my post on the nearby Squire Boone Caverns here!

The post Indiana Caverns : A Learning Adventure for your Kids appeared first on TheCrazySAHM.

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***Disclaimer – I received this product for free from Moms Meet (momsmeet.com) to use and post my honest opinions. Compensation for this post was provided and this page may contain affiliate links.***

Cooking oil is one staple you will find in just about every kitchen in America. It is makes our food tasty, fry’s things to perfection, and helps us bake goodies to perfection. However, did you know that that when it comes to cooking oils, there is a healthier option out there than the oil you have in your kitchen right now?

Yep, you read that right!

At the beginning of this year, I made a decision to lead a healthier lifestyle. This particularly pertains to my diet, and had carried over into the diets of my family members. This is why I was super excited when I was contacted by momsmeet.com to review Malaysian Palm Oil.

So why was I so excited about this product?

Health Benefits Jam Packed with Nutrients

Ever used a cooking oil that was good for your immune system, heart, and liver? A cooking oil, that helps reduce your risk of cancer, has the ability to heal damage caused by stroke, and has a neutral effect on high cholesterol?

Malaysian Red Palm Fruit Oil contains high levels of carotene, has more vitamin E than any other cooking oil available today! These nutrients have the ability to help with all of the things previously listed. Also, Malaysian Palm Oil has the ability to help protect your skin against UV damage.

Great for High Temp Cooking

Due to the high smoke point of Malaysian Palm Oil, this cooking oil makes a great choice for grilling, sautéing, baking or frying. The oil does not break down or lose its nutritional value while cooking, making it a great choice in your recipes!

Need some extra inspiration? Try substituting Malaysian Palm Oil for mayonnaise in your pasta or potato salads.

Non-GMO and Trans Fat Free

Have you tried looking for foods that are non-GMO? I am telling you, it is harder than one might think!

Most foods we consume today contain some kind of GMO’s (genetically modified organisms). Yet, we are being told more and more that we need to be limiting the amount of GMO’s that we consume.

Great news!

Not only are you able to purchase Malaysian Palm Oil which is GMO free, but it is also increasingly being used to replace other oils in the foods you buy!

Plus, Malaysian Palm Oil is also trans fat free, which is not something you can say about most cooking oils.

Great for the Environment

Ok guys, this is seriously cool, and probably my favorite quality of this cooking oil!

The palm tree farms from which this oil is derived, are seriously boosting the Malaysian economy. Pulling farmers out of debt, building roads, schools and healthcare locations. I know my cooking oil was not doing any of these things.

Also, the palm tree farms are majorly benefiting local wildlife and contributing to conservation efforts! A fund has been set up by the palm oil industry to support several wildlife sanctuaries in the area. Cool, right?

My New Favorite Cooking Oil in Use

Well, now that I have given you the low down on the benefits of this oil, let’s get to my review!

Popcorn

One thing that my kiddos must have when camping is popcorn! Since I received my sample of Malaysian Palm Oil prior to our latest cabin camping trip, I had to try it out!

I made my popcorn in the microwave using the palm oil, and it was so simple! Once the last kernels finished popping, I pulled the fresh popcorn out and found that the popcorn tasted great straight from the microwave! I did not add butter to this batch, and instead just added a bit of salt and went.

Plus, my kids loved the taste! Healthy and tasty. Doesn’t get better than that!

Asparagus

Once a week at least my family has asparagus with

dinner. Usually, I cut my stalks, toss them with a bit of vegetable oil or butter, and

then add my seasonings and go.

This time, I decided to try the Malaysian Palm Oil in place of my usual oils and I was not disappointed! Our asparagus tasted great, and it had the added benefit of the carotene that comes with the oil.

Even better, my kids were super excited that their asparagus had a slight orange color to it as opposed to its usual green. Made me giggle a bit.

My Opinion

Overall, my family really enjoyed the Malaysian Palm Oil! I loved that it not only tasted great in my favorite recipes, but that it also provides such great health benefits to my family!

A win, win situation in my book!

Interested in learning more about Malaysian Palm Oil? Click here to visit their website, and happy cooking!

The post Introducing Healthy Cooking Oil into my Families Diet appeared first on TheCrazySAHM.

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***Disclaimer- My family was provided entry to the caverns and nearby accommodations in exchange for this post. Rest assured, all opinions expressed in this post are my own. This post also may contain affiliate links. This simply means that if you make a purchase through one of these links, I may be compensated at no additional cost to you.***

Looking for a great new adventure to add to your summer itinerary with the kids? Look no further than Squire Boone Caverns!

Located just outside of historic Corydon, Indiana, this location boasts some one-of-a-kind sights and experiences. These experiences will have your little ones learning and having fun simultaneously. All of this will be achieved as they are discovering history at its finest.

Squire Boone Caverns has something for everyone at their rural location. Plus, the location is a part of the Indiana Cave Trail (a series of 4 cave locations in southern Indiana). Upon visiting all 4 of these locations, and stamping your passport, you are able to snag a sweet t-shirt for all members of your party participating!

So step off the beaten path and get ready to be immersed in the rich history of southern Indiana.

Squire Boone Caverns History

Discovered in 1790 by brothers, Squire Boone and Daniel Boone, the caverns themselves hold much of the history that makes this site

unique.

You see, after discovering these caverns, Squire used them as a hiding place while trying to escape from a group of local hostile Indians. Following the time he used the caverns as sanctuary, he decided to settle his family onto the landthat houses the caverns.

Upon his death, Squire was even laid to rest in the caverns. Over the years his burial space has been relocated and can now be observed while on the cavern tour.

Tour

Aside from the history found at in the Squire Boone Caverns, you will also

find several unique cave formations that are sure to stun. The favorite formation among my kiddos while in the caverns, were the active rimstone dams. The dams found on the site are the largest active dams in the United States. They are also the second largest active dams in the world.

Best part?

They are all lit up with blue lights making them appear “like something from another world”, according to my 9 year old.

Also on the cave tour, you are guaranteed to see some stunning draperies, soda straws, stalactites, stalagmites, and columns. Not sure what those are? No worries, your tour guide will make sure you and your kids have the 411 along the way!

Our tour guide in this cavern system was AWESOME and was very open to my children’s questions! This is a huge plus in my eyes, as these trips are meant to be education and fun for my kids. I always appreciate a guide willing to work with them. (Even when my 4 year old chooses to ask the guide if a zombie is going to come out of Squire Boone’s grave :/.)

Tour Tips

The caverns themselves are large and relatively open, allowing for a comfortable tour with my three children. While I carried my 1

year old in her Tula, she was still able to take in all of the sights along with us. Ellie was not confined to being tucked under my chin as I had to duck through the cave on this tour, which was a big plus!

***Note to Moms*** At the end of the tour, you are required to climb a 73 step spiral staircase. This is the only exit to the cave, thus be sure that you and your little ones are prepared for this exit!

Be sure to check out the Squire Boone Cavern’s website here for information on booking your own cave tour!

Squire Boone Historical Village

Want to know what sets this site apart from the other caves in the area? The WORKING historical village!

After finishing your cavern tour, you will find the Squire Boone Historical Village just off the main parking lot! Here you will find an old fashioned soap maker, a candle maker, gemstone mining, and Boone’s Kitchen and Candy Shop!

Candle Maker and Soap Maker

These locations generally do not open for the summer until Memorial Day Weekend. We were able to

see inside a few of the locations however, due to them being open for a school field trip. This was super exciting for my kids because, let’s be honest, you do not get to see soap and candles being handmade every day!

Cooler yet, the products that are made in both of these shops are sold on site, and available for you to purchase! Exciting right?

Boone’s Kitchen and Candy Shop

While Boone’s Kitchen and Candy Shop was not open for this trip, I was told that the meals and mixes that are available in the shop are not only amazing, but several of them are milled on site at the Grist Mill!

I was also informed that their pies, brownies, and cookies are homemade in the shop, making this a must see for anyone with a sweet tooth. (Don’t worry, I will be back to sample all of them soon, I am sure!)

In the Candy Shop, you can find wholesale candies, lollipops, and even old fashioned rock candy! All of these are made in nearby New Albany, IN.

I do not know about you, but I have a REALLY hard time passing up a good cotton candy flavored rock candy sucker!

We also were not able to tour the Gem Mine Sluice. I did find out a few details on the 50

ft. sluice however!

During this experience, your little ones (or adult children, ahem, husbands) are able to try their hand at old fashion gold mining. After mining, you will be left with fools gold, and a variety of gemstones that you can bag up and take with you.

Another fun option for the moms out there…you can have the gemstones your kids find mounted into a setting right there on site!

The Historic Boone’s Mill

On our visit to the Squire Boone Caverns, our group was able to experience the Grist Mill! The mill itself was also filled with rich history.

This mill was one of several mills that were built in the area by Squire Boone himself once he settled onto this land. It was used to grind grains into meal and grits, used by the settlers in the area.

Today, you and your kids can not only tour the historic mill, but also see a live demonstration of how the mill works! That’s right, your kids get to see how much work it took to put a meal on the table back in the 1800’s. (Also, why we now just buy our pancake mixes in a box from the grocery store!)

Stepping outside of the mill, my kids were able to witness the same stream that they saw flowing through the caverns, as it rushes downstream to power the mill. Many questions came from my kiddos about this process. My 9 year old was particularly fascinated in the fact that they did all of this work without electricity. (Or Youtube tutorials!)

Zipline Adventure for the Family

Another great activity that Squire Boone Caverns offers its guests, is the Zipline Adventure course.

While ziplines have increased in popularity over the last several years, the courses offered here still stand alone in the fact that you are able to zip over Indiana forests and ravines, as opposed to the hustle and bustle you catch in some urban zipline tours.

This particular set of courses is also able to accommodate a wider variety of age levels and excitement levels!

With kids zips for ages 3-6, and a quick zip with only 2 lines allowing you to get your feet wet, the novice and nervous are both easily acclimated to the idea of zip lining.

From there, ages 7 and up are able to zip on the original, 2800 ft. course. This course takes you up to 70 foot above the forest floor on a ride that lasts approximately 1 ½ hours to 2 hours long.

If you elect for a bit more excitement in your day, ages 13 and up can enjoy a 2 ½ hour long tour on lines that will take you up to 150 feet above the forest floor.

Sounds great right? This is going to be added to my wish list of destinations with the hubby for sure! Be sure to check out this site for all of the information you will need to book your own zip lining adventure today!

Notable Property Extras

The fun at Squire Boone Caverns does not stop with just the activities listed above! The site itself actually has a couple little extra’s that really make the trip special!

Goat Pen

Just outside of the property gift shop, you will find a pen which houses two resident goats, as well as a pig! These friendly critters are here to welcome you to the property, and brought smiles to all three of my kiddos faces.

Duck Pond

Just off to the right of the parking lot, you will find a small pier leading out onto a duck pond.

While we did not spot any ducks out on the pond, we did manage to see several large frogs, some fish, and a lazy cat who was out enjoying the shade in the heat of the day. My kids surprising found the entire pond experience to be very exciting. (Even though I

would not allow Brendan to go swimming.)

Play Area

Another hidden gem for the kids was the small playground located just behind the historical village.

While this is not your run of the mill city park, the equipment found at Squire Boone Caverns great for our group. It was just enough to run off the kiddos extra energy after they had been patiently listening, learning, asking 50 million questions and paying attention all day.

Picnic Area’s

An added bonus to any location I go to for summer travels is a good picnic area, and Squire Boone Caverns did not disappoint!

With picnic tables located in several spots across the property, finding a place to sit and enjoy lunch was simple. Trash cans were also-readily available across the property making clean up super convenient!

Upcoming Events Wild West Show

On May 26th and 27th, be sure to make plans to visit the caverns! Both days, there will be an 1800’s camp set up for visitors to learn about and explore. Also, there will be TWO Wild West Gunshows presented each day for spectators to watch! Be sure to bring blankets or lawn chairs for the show!

On June 28th the Wild West Gunshow will return for an encore performance date! Be sure to get these special shows on your calendar!

FREE Admission Personnel Days

Throughout the summer, Squire Boone Caverns also hosts several personnel days. On these days, individuals in community positions (military personnel, police officers, fire fighters, EMTs, nurses etc.) get FREE admission. Be sure to check out the events page here to find out which events are coming up!

Accommodations

While traveling through the Indiana Cave Trail, my crew stayed in the Hampton Inn by Hilton in nearby historic Corydon, IN. The hotel provided my kids with a much needed swim following a warm day of spelunking through the caves. The hotel also boasted wonderful accommodations that were enjoyed by all!

The staff was beyond amazing, and very friendly. Also, the complimentary breakfast had something for everyone in our group to enjoy! I cannot thank them enough for accommodating..

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***Disclaimer – I received this product for free from Moms Meet (momsmeet.com) to use and post my honest opinions. Compensation for this post was provided and this page may contain affiliate links.***

Summer is right around the corner and you know what that means…Vacations!

My family and I have already started our summer trips, and I know that once my 9 year old is out of school, these trips will go from once a week, to a lot more often.

While packing quick, on the go lunches for the kids is easy enough, their lunch choices often times leave me still hungry and reaching for convenience store snacks. Even though these snacks are not filling, and even worse for you, they are pretty well my only option on those busy summer days, right?

WRONG!

Yep, you read that right! Thanks to Mom’s Meet, I have discovered a new protein shake, Fuel For Fire, that is perfect for on the run mom’s like myself who want to stay healthy, even on the go!

Since these smoothies are in a convenient on the go pouch, they are super simple to slip into my purse or diaper bag. This has already helped to deter me from unnecessary gas station pit stops. (And from that 3rd stop at the ice cream stand this week that I know I will regret later.)

Finding a good mom snack is hard ladies. Good news is, it doesn’t have to be!

The smoothies come in 5 great flavors, Strawberry Banana, Banana Cocoa, Sweet Potato Apple, Tropical, and Coffee, meaning there is something for everyone. (My personal favorite is the Sweet Potato Apple, but the Coffee totally gave me the morning caffeine kick that I needed!) You can enjoy these smoothies straight out of the pouch, or refrigerate them for a cool, refreshing treat!

They also do not come with the nasty aftertaste you have come to expect from many protein shakes on the market today.

And guess what ladies? I actually feel good about eating this mom snack!

How many times do you eat a great tasting snack, the feel guilty afterwards because of what was in it?

With Fuel For Fire Smoothies, you are getting nine essential amino acids and more protein than you will find in one egg all from one little pouch! Plus, they are less than 125 calories.

Totally worth skipping the ice cream shop now, right?

These smoothie packs also leave me feeling full for hours, even on our super busy days!

Interested in picking up some of these smoothies for yourself? You can find them for $2.99 a pouch (Guess what? They are even less with the upcoming coupon!) on the Fuel For Fire website, Amazon, and select retailers. Want to find a store near you that carries them? To find Fuel For Fire in your area, click here for the full list of locations.

Now your only problem will be keeping your kids from eating your mom snack once you get them! (You read that right. Not only did I find a protein shake that I love, but my kids love them too!)

Don’t worry though, with a snack this yummy AND healthy for you, I am finding it much easier to share with my kids. Of course, it doesn’t surprise me that they love them. The founder of Fuel For Fire made over 25,000 of these smoothie pouches with the help of his twin daughters! I am sure they were great taste testers.

Before you hit the road for your own summer road trips, be sure to grab some Fuel For Fire smoothies. Then, you can keep yourself, and your kiddos full and energized, no matter where your summer takes you!

Get 40% off and free shipping on any purchase on fuelforfire.com with the discount code SAVE40. Offer expires July 31, 2018.

The post The Only Mom Snack you will need this Summer appeared first on TheCrazySAHM.

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One of the reasons I became a stay at home mom was to be able to spend more time with my children learning and exploring. One of the first places that we began exploring, was none other than the small county that we live in, Fountain County, Indiana.

What did we find?

That  within our small county, there are some really big adventures to be had! From candy, to live shows, there is so much to do and see other than the cornfields that separate the small towns out here. In fact, we had so much fun exploring that I wanted to share with you all of the great places that we have to visit in this beautiful little county that so many just drive through!

***Disclaimer: This post was in no way sponsored by any of the locations or companies mentioned. This list was complied based upon the opinions of myself, and my family and all opinions expressed are my own. Have a location that you think should have made the list? Be sure to let me know in the comments, because who knows, it could be featured at a later time!***

Sugar High

Remember those candy stores that you visited as a kid where you got to pick out penny and nickel candies? You know, the ones where you got to take home a whole bag because of how inexpensive it was? The first Fountain County, Indiana destination on our list is going to bring you right back to those memories!

That’s right, Sugar High Candy & Gifts located in Attica, IN has brought back all the feels of the candy stores we frequented as kids. Not only do they offer inexpensive treats that will provide your kids with the sugar high they are seeking, they also offer your childhood candy favorites that you do not often find in stores!

Melody Pops, Candy Sticks, Flat Taffy and Neapolitan Coconut Bars can all be found here. In addition

to these, you will find your current favorites including a large selection of Lindor Truffles!

While visiting, be sure to grab some fresh coffee or popcorn, or maybe you can make it out on one of the days they are spinning cotton candy!

You can learn more about Sugar High here, and be sure to be on the lookout for special events occurring at their store.

Myer’s Dinner Theatre

Deep in the heart of Fountain County, Indiana you will find a hidden treasure known as the Myer’s Dinner Theatre.

While this theater has been around for a hot minute, it was been revamped in 2016, and I am telling you guys, their shows are phenomenal!

From classics like “Fiddler on the Roof” to custom written plays, the Myer’s Dinner Theatre boosts an amazing cast of passionate actors. These actors put on regular shows, and while they are not performing on Broadway, their skills are sure to impress for a small town theater!

If you want to find an amazing dinner and expose your kids to theater while ensuring they receive a great down home style dinner then the Myer’s Dinner Theatre is the place to be! Be sure to check out their website to see what show is playing when you plan your trip!

Badlands Off Road Park

If you own an ATV and live anywhere near Indiana, you are sure to have heard of Badlands Off Road park. This Fountain County, Indiana gem attracts riders from all across the Midwest (and beyond) for the excitement of riding the parks 800 acres of terrain!

From sandy trails to muddy pits, this park will expose you to a variety of terrain options! Also, be sure to check out the hills that they have available to climb on your favorite ATV for a thrill that is out of this world!

No ATV, no problem! The park offers rentals on a first come, first serve basis, allowing people from all walks of life to be able to experience the excitement for themselves.

The park also boasts a campground on property, as well as several cabins allowing for easy accommodations while you are in the area. Be sure to watch the park’s Facebook page and website for information on special events for the whole family to participate in!

Wolf’s Homemade Candy

While traveling through Fountain County, Indiana, a stop at Wolf’s Homemade Candy shop is a must!

Immediately upon walking into the store, you are engulfed in the rich scents of chocolatey goodness that will make you never want to leave. In addition to the smell, my kiddos particularly enjoy this location because you often get to see some of the “behind the scenes” candy making process that is going on in the kitchen. Chocolate covered fruits, marshmallow crème cups, mints, and peanut buttery deliciousness can all be found here. Plus, you can mix

and match your chocolate boxes to fit your tastes!

While you are in, be sure to grab some coffee from the only espresso bar that you will find in Fountain County!

Stop in for the espresso, leave with all the chocolate, share none with the kids. Sounds great to me!

Right across the street from Wolf’s candy shop you will find their ice cream shop, which is open all summer. Be sure to try their haystack flurry made with fresh candies from the candy shop for a flavor that is sure to please!

Portland Arch Nature Preserve

While traveling through Fountain County, Indiana, you have to make a stop at the Portland Arch Nature Trail! Take an hour or so and hike the mile long nature trail and enjoy the peace and tranquility that the country life can offer you!

The best part about this trail? It is called Portland Arch because there is a natural land bridge that able to be interacted with during your time on the preserve. Taking one of the trails will take you over

the natural land bridge, and the other trail takes you under the bridge, allowing you to fully experience the miracle that is nature.

While you are on the preserve, you will also find yourself immersed in the rich history of the area. Before Indiana became a state, the preserve was home to multiple Indigenous Indian tribes. You also are able to view a short segment of what was once the Wabash/Erie Canal towpath. Quite a bit of history for such a small county!

Bring a picnic lunch and take a break along the trail by the creek that runs through the property to enjoy the wildlife that live in the area. From chipmunks and squirrels, to white-tail deer, you can witness them all during a short hike through the trails!

Pinball on Perry

Remember those pinball arcades that you spent way too much money on as a kid? The ones where you spent every last quarter you

had in your allowance because you refused to accept the fact that your name was not going to make it onto that leaderboard?

(Ok, maybe that was just me.)

Anyways, a short drive down Perry St. in Attica, IN will land you at Pinball on Perry. This newly opened pinball arcade will take you back with their 25 cent to 75 cent a play games, and plethora of pinball machines!

The only drawback of Pinball on Perry is that since they are fairly new, their hours are weekend oriented. Be sure to check them out on Facebook here so that you can stop by when they are open and get in a couple rounds during your visit to Fountain County, Indiana!

Hershey’s Drive-In

Looking for the best ice cream that Fountain County, Indiana has to offer? Look no further than Hershey’s Drive-In, located in Veedersburg, Indiana!

Seriously guys, Hershey’s has some of the best ice cream that the Midwest has to offer. Plus, while you are there you can grab dinner for the family as well. Just a special bit of info, their salads are AMAZING!

While my personal favorite is the lemon soft serve (it is SOOO GOOD!), my daughter loves Hershey’s sherbet flavors! My son on the other hand,is a huge fan of Hershey’s glacier’s (vanilla soft serve mixed with slushy, mmmmm).

The drive in is open Monday-Sunday from 11am-9pm, and you can check out their Facebook page here to look for special events they have going on throughout the summer!

Covington Bike Trail

Been traveling for a while and ready to get out of the car for a few minutes? Maybe you are a local and it is just a beautiful day out.

Either way, be sure to check out the Covington Bike Trail in Covington, IN!

This trail, conveniently located in Covington off Interstate 74 in Fountain County, IN, is fully paved and winds through both country and city scenery. While it is the perfect trail for bike riding, it also is a great area to get out and walk, or to take the stroller during the warmer months!

My kiddos love being able get out and run around on the trail, and are even more excited about the nature that they get to see when they are out exploring! The trail itself even winds through the Covington City Park. This makes for a great stop for the kids to take a few minutes out to play before you continue on your journey!

The Historic Devon Theater

As far a movie theaters go, you may feel like if you have seen one, you have seen them all. If you have not experienced The Historic Devon Movie Theater however, you are missing out.

Located in Attica, Indiana, this movie theater one of the few mono screened movie theaters left in a world of multi screened cinemas. While they tend to showcase popular films for about 1 ½ – 2 weeks at a time, during the summer you can catch the free summer movie program and see a family friendly film for free with the kids! Be sure to pick up some fresh popcorn with extra butter from the concession stand to immerse yourself in the full experience!

Want to find out what the theater has playing? Check out their Facebook page here to find out what the theater currently has showing!

Old 55 Distillery

While the Old 55 Distillery is not yet able to accommodate your kiddo’s (unless they are 21 or over), it is still well worth mentioning

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It is that time of year. Spring cleaning.

You know.

When you are ready for spring weather, yet winter is lingering and just does not want to leave? When your house needs a lift, yet you are not quite in full swing?

I swear. All I have wanted to do for the last 3 weeks is open the windows, let in the breeze and get my spring cleaning on!

The Indiana weather is finally playing ball with me, and spring has decided to creep on in allowing for a bit of window time!

This being said, I have already started to de-funk my house! Not quite enough to consider spring cleaning, but enough to get the grime out of the places I do not usually think about. Yep, time to clean out that funk and start letting in the spring.

Problem is, where do you start when you cannot quite let in the sunshine, but are itching to do something? Check out this spring cleaning list for my 10 things to get started on today!

Citrus Candle or Wax Melts

First things first, time to make your home start smelling cleaner. Spring cleaning warrants the use of fresh spring scents, so bring on the citrus!

Oranges and lemons make my lists of top favorite spring scents. Plus, added perk, they make my whole home just feel brighter!

Yeah, mocha scents just cannot do that for me.

Clean the Dishwasher

One of the things I never think to clean until this time of year is the dishwasher. Don’t get me wrong, I always end up cleaning it intermittently throughout the year, but spring cleaning is the time when it actually hits me that it needs care.

If you want to make this job super quick, you can pull a Chelsea and purchase your dishwasher cleaner from Amazon here. (It even comes prime, so you will have it in just a couple days.)

You could also use these tips from homedit in order to clean your dishwasher on your own using just vinegar!

Clean the Washer

Just like the dishwasher, cleaning the washer is something else I do not think about until spring cleaning time. I mean, the washer cleans your cloths, so why do you have to clean it, right?

Yeah, um no.

You have to clean those puppies.

Again, you can cheat and purchase your washer cleaner off of Amazon here. If you want to go the diy route, you could also use these tips from iheartnaptime in order to clean your washer on your own using just vinegar!

Deep Clean your Floors

I know, no one wants to get down on the floor and clean anymore. With Swiffers and steam mops, the idea of scrubbing on your hands and knees is almost obsolete. Honestly though, while it seems like a bunch of work, the results are totally worth it!

Promise, it isn’t that hard. Plus, think of all the extra stuff you will pull up when you do finally scrub the floors by hand!

So grab a bucket, a good rag, and your favorite cleaner and get to work ladies! Your floors will thank you! (Ok, so maybe not, but they will look freaking awesome!)

Clean Table/Chair Legs

How often do you think to clean off the legs of your chairs/table?

If you are like me, the answer is NEVER.

About once a year, I start to defunk my house and start spring cleaning all of my furniture! I grab a good furniture polish and start removing the years’ worth of dirt and grime that my kids (yeah, we will blame it all on them) have deposited onto the legs of my furniture.

This one goes by super quick once you get started, and your furniture looks so much better when you are done! Definitely not a step to skip!

Deep Clean your Mattress

We have all seen the videos. You know…the ones where they show us everything living in our mattress?

Don’t worry, I try to ignore them too.

But when I get into spring cleaning mode, it is time to defunk the mattresses in my home too. Guess what though guys? This one isn’t too hard either!

I start by vacuuming the mattress in question. (I vacuum the tar out of it until I am sure those gross things from the dirty mattress videos are gone.) Then, I spray the whole thing down with a solution made up of 1 drop of dish soap, 3TBS baking soda, and 8 oz of hydrogen peroxide. Once the mattress is dries out, I vacuum the whole thing again, and voila!  Clean mattress!

See, told you it wasn’t that hard!

Launder Curtains

One thing I never really thought about doing until I had my own house was laundering the curtains.

I mean, they are a pain in the ass to hang, so do you really have to wash them?

(The answer is yes, unfortunately)

The great thing is, if you go ahead and defunk your curtains while you are spring cleaning, you do not have to mess with it again for about 6 months! Plus, wash them with Downy Unstoppables, then leave your windows open and the fragrance that you are left with?

Bliss. Sheer Bliss.

The main thing to remember when laundering your curtains, is to pay attention to the directions provided on the tag. While I just throw all of my curtains in the washer on cold, (because I am a mom, and who freaking has time) some fabrics will come with specific care instructions that you should probably pay attention to if you want your curtains to still look pretty when they come back out of the wash.

Just food for thought.

Clean Window Sills

What do I hate more than washing windows?

Cleaning the window sills.

This job is for the birds, alas, it must be done. Therefore, it makes it onto my spring cleaning list so that I only have to do a major scrub down of them once a year.

Because, while it does make me happy to have the window’s open in the spring, it grosses me out to see all of the nasties that tried to live in the window sill over the winter.

Enough said.

Clean Out the Couch

For finances sake, this one should probably be on more than your spring cleaning list.

But for the fact that I hate pulling all of the couch cushions apart and vacuuming out all of the nooks and crannies, I generally only clean the couch out twice a year.

Definitely one that needs to be on the list though.

I mean, have you seen how much money those things eat?

Clear out the Kitchen Cabinets

Oh yes, I had to sneak this one in there.

If you are anything like me, the more your kids grow and start to help with the chores, the more disorganized your cabinets become. Therefore, at least once a year generally during spring cleaning time, all of my cabinets get defunked.

Haven’t used it in a year?

Tossed.

No idea where the other pieces to the gizmo are?

Gone.

All of the freaking Tupperware lids that have been multiplying like bunnies, yet have no containers.

Trashed.

By the time I am done, it feels like I have a whole new kitchen!

Plus, I am actually able to find things for like a week or two.

While you are at it, check out this AWESOME spice cabinet organizer! No more having all that stuff fall on your head, or never being able to find the stuff in the back!!!

Well guys, there you have it! My spring cleaning list of “must do’s”.

Do you guys have any additional chores you had to your spring cleaning list? Let me know below! Find these tips helpful? Give this post a share on Facebook so your friends can utilize it too!

The post 10 Spring Cleaning tasks to Start Today! appeared first on TheCrazySAHM.

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