Sunday, September 30, 2012

Great Wolf Lodge - Wisconsin Dells, WI --Places-to-go feature...



We recently had the opportunity to visit the Great Wolf Lodge in Wisconsin Dells, WI.  We have always heard good things about Great Wolf Lodge, but had never visited one until now.  

The Great Wolf Lodge in the Dells is an indoor/outdoor water park hotel.  It features a massive, 84-degree indoor water park and offers over 80,000 square feet of water-packed excitement, including jaw-dropping slides for thrill seekers and zero-depth entry areas for little ones.  

There are so many things to do in addition to the water park.  Grab a wand and battle a dragon in MagiQuest, get an ice cream-themed manicure in Scooops Kid Spa, grab a bite to eat at the Loose Moose Bar and Grill and then finish the day off with your family in the Grand Lobby for a nightly fireside Story Time where the Clock Tower comes alive with your favorite characters.

If you love an "outdoorsy" kind-of-feel then Great Wolf Lodge is the place you need to visit.  The log cabin looking hotel has so much to offer and it's someplace that the whole family will enjoy.

We had so much fun at Great Wolf and would go back in a heartbeat!  We loved that the indoor water park was so spread out.  The boys absolutely loved Fort Mackenzie which is a 4-story interactive tree house in the middle of the indoor park.  They climbed, they splashed and slid down the slides.

We all loved the Slap Tail Pond Wave Pool, the Crooked Creek lazy river and all of the fun outdoor slides and activities that Thunder Bay had to offer.

Our room was very clean and spacious and my grandma and the boys loved the outdoor patio.

When we finished swimming for the day we loved that there was a Pizza Hut located right inside the hotel so that we didn't have to leave the facility.  We also enjoyed grabbing a little dessert at the Bear Paw Sweets and Eats where the boys had a yummy brownie and some ice cream.  Then we spent a little time in the Northern Lights Arcade before heading down to the Grand Lobby for Story Time.

The boys were so excited to get their pj's on so that they could listen to a story, watch the Clock Tower come alive and meet the live Great Wolf characters.  

It was such a fun place to visit and we had something to do all day.  The facility really is amazing and the staff was wonderful! We were able to check-in early to use the waterpark even though our room wasn't ready right away. The staff called us as soon as it was available which we really appreciated! The only regret is that we didn't spend more than one night at Great Wolf Lodge!!

We would highly recommend you visiting a Great Wolf Lodge. We have already decided that we will definitely be going back and are happy that there are 2 in our home state of Ohio!


Charlotte/Concord, NC
Cincinnati/Mason, OH
Grand Mound, WA
Grapevine, TX
Kansas City, KS
Niagara Falls, Canada
Pocono Mountains, PA
Sandusky, OH
Traverse City, MI
Williamsburg, VA
Wisconsin Dells, WI 

You can learn more about Great Wolf Lodge and book your reservations by visiting:

Make sure you check out Great Wolf's "Howl-O-Ween" that starts in October.  The whole pack can celebrate the thrills and chills of Howl-O-Ween.  Kids will enjoy the nightly Trick-or-Treat Trail, costume contests and Spooktacular Story Time. Make your reservations today!!


  Disclaimer:  We want to thank the Great Wolf Lodge for providing The Jackson Five Family Blog with a discounted rate to conduct this reader review.   However, our opinions of the facility are entirely our own and we have not been paid to publish positive sentiments towards the company.

Nutrisystem Week 5 Jenna -- Nutrisystem Week 1 Craig

Jenna's Nutrisystem Journey -- week 5
 I have officially been on Nutrisystem for 5 weeks!  I can't believe it's been that long already!  It's went a lot faster than I could have ever imagined and I am feeling pretty good about my results so far.  

I just received my 2nd month's food order and I am excited to try more food.  I think the key to weight loss is keeping things interesting.  I love food and like to change things up from week to week so that I do not get bored or burnt out with my diet.

I have been incorporating more exercise into my daily routine and try to make it a priority to workout.  We are able to get YouTube on our tv and I love finding new bootcamp workouts that really make me work hard and burn calories.  The weather has also been nice so I have been taking more bike rides, getting a walk in and spending time with my boys' jumping on the trampoline.

I was a little disappointed when I got on the scale for my weekly check in and it said 125.2 because last week I weighed 123.8.  That is a gain of 1.4 lbs but I am not going to complain too much because my clothes still feel looser and I have been working out more than I ever have. I am just going to blame it on gaining more muscle and keep on doing what I am doing and see what next week brings!  

1st Week - Starting Weight 131.4
2nd Week - 127.8
3rd Week - 125.8
4th Week - 123.8
5th Week 125.2

Craig's Nutrisystem Journey -- week 1
Hey guy's it's Craig, Jenna's husband.  Please bear with me as I write my first Nutrisystem post. I am excited to join my wife in this weight loss journey.  I used to be in the gym daily and being fit was my life. When Jenna and I first met over 10 years ago I spent my free time in the gym lifting weights.  Eating healthy was easy for me.  I never ate fast food or drank soda, but over the years that lifestyle slowly faded away, I got busier with work, we had two kids and I drifted away from my healthy lifestyle.
I just finished my first week on the Nutrisystem Men's Success plan and look forward to getting back on track. It has definitely been a challenging week for me.  Getting used to the structured plan and all of the new food is very different than the unhealthy diet that I have been consuming each day. Although everything is much different than I have been used to, I actually feel like I get to eat more food on the plan and haven't felt hungry. 

My starting weight was 226 and after one week I now weigh 220 lbs.

I will check back in next week with my results and look forward to the opportunity that Nutrisystem has given me.

If you want to join us on this journey in losing weight and getting healthy on Nutrisystem, you can join today by calling


or by visiting

*Craig and Jenna are being provided four months of Nutrisystem food and counsel for free as blogger's. All opinions are 100% our own*

Friday, September 28, 2012


I am so excited to introduce you all to Chic 2 Chic Bowtique, a new Etsy store. My friend Jill has just opened up this "bowtique" with her adorable headband designs.

 Jill, Chic 2 Chic Bowtique owner and designer started making headbands for her daughter, Brooklynn and is now offering them for sale to the public.  The headbands she makes come in all shapes and sizes and are just adorable!! 

 Whether you are looking for something simple, sweet or chic you will find it at Chic 2 Chic Bowtique. There are new designs going on her Etsy site all of the time.  If you are looking for certain colors or a specific style headband, Jill would be happy to work with you in customizing something for your needs.

Of course she knew that I didn't have any little girls, but she was so kind to send me two headbands-- one for each of my adorable nieces, Lucy and Emme.

My nieces were SO excited when they received their new headbands.  Jill sent this gorgeous Black Flower Headband for Lucy. The flower is very full and embellished with a rhinestone center. The lace headband is very soft and has a soft backing to ensure comfort for your little one.  I love the damask print -- so cute!

She also sent Emme this Off White and Pink Flower Headband that features a pink rhinestone center.  My niece loved the "pink jewel" and thought she was a princess wearing it! 

Oh my she is just too sweet and the headband was precious on her!  

Here are a few of the most recent styles featured on Chic 2 Chic Bowtique...

Yes, football season has arrived --get your custom team headband ordered now! 

How fun are these initial headbands?!  I am loving the glittery letter's-- wouldn't these make an awesome Christmas gift!!  It's never too early to start ordering those special gifts.



You can view all of the styles available in the Chic 2 Chic Bowtique Etsy store by visiting:


"LIKE" Chic 2 Chic Bowtique on Facebook to see all of the latest styles and to see special discounts by visiting:

- WIN IT -

One lucky reader will win any headband they like from Chic 2 Chic Bowtique --(winner can choose any design from the Etsy store and customize the colors to their liking)!


  Disclaimer:  Chic 2 Chic Bowtique provided The Jackson Five Family Blog with a complimentary product sample to conduct this reader review and give-a-way.  However, our opinions of the product(s) are entirely our own and we have not been paid to publish positive sentiments towards the company or their products!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Cattiva Cosmetics il Primo Bacio Lip Gloss Review and Give-a-way ends 10/10/2012...

You guys already know how much I LOVE Cattiva Cosmetics and today I am excited to share another product with you all -- it's the Cattiva il Primo Bacio Lip Gloss.

Rich and tempting, this luxurious treatment lip gloss will create soft, luscious lips! It's fortified with coconut water, hyaluronic acid and antioxidants to help soothe, moisturize and plump lips without that awful stinging feeling that some plumping glosses have.

The il Primo Bacio is Cattiva's signature product and you will love that it is adorned with a Swarovski crystal on the top of the cap adding that special touch.

The gloss is available for $24 and comes in several gorgeous shades: #2 (which I received and also shown), #4, #6, #7 and #8.  

I am loving this new gloss!!  The color itself is so pretty and it goes on so smooth. The #2 is just a very pretty natural pink with a hint of shimmer and it has quickly become one of my faves!  It's very wearable and looks good worn alone or layered over my favorite lipstick or liner. 

To learn more about the il Primo Bacio Lip Gloss or to view all of the other cosmetic products that Cattiva has to offer please visit:


Not only are we giving away one gloss, but you can also enter the Cattiva il Primo Bacio Lip Gloss Sweepstakes going on now!  

One lucky winner will receive a set of 3 glosses in the most popular shades -- #2, #4 and #7!  

Hurry sweepstakes ends soon -- click HERE to enter!

- WIN IT -

One lucky reader will win their very own Cattiva Cosmetics il Primo Bacio Lip Gloss valued at $24!!


  Disclaimer:  Cattiva Cosmetics provided The Jackson Five Family Blog with a lip gloss sample to conduct this reader review and give-a-way.  However, our opinions of the product(s) are entirely our own and we have not been paid to publish positive sentiments towards the company or their products!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

GoodNites Underwear Review and Give-a-way ends 10/09/2012...


As school is getting back in session and bedtime routines are being put back in place, the topic of bed wetting is often overlooked at this busy time of year for school aged children.  

Did you know that 5-7 million children wet the bed in the United States according to the National Kidney Foundation-- that's more than the number of children who started kindergarten in the United States in 2011 according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.

95% of both boys and girls are potty trained by the age of 4, but 40% of parents say their child between the ages of 4 and 6 wets the bed at least once a week!

I was a bedwetter and you can ask my mom, it was NO fun!  Not only is it a pain for parents to clean up the mess in the middle of the night, but it can be embarrassing for kids too. We are lucky that both boys' are not bedwetter's, but we do have occasional accidents.  Just the other night our 4 year old, Grady had too much to drink before bedtime and fell asleep before either of us could take him potty.  The thought went through my head about him wetting but I didn't want to wake him up to take him.  Big mistake on my part because he woke up in the middle of the night soaked!  

That's why I was excited to learn about GoodNites UnderwearGoodNites recently sent us a package of GoodNites Underwear featuring limited designs from Marvel.

GoodNites Underwear are specifically made for boys and girls ages 4 and up.  They are 40% more absorbent than the leading training pant and are the most absorbent pant for bigger kids. They are made to protect while lying down and help keep pajamas and bedding dry all night long.  

Kids will love the soft, quiet fabric ensuring plush comfort and a restful night's sleep. They will also love the cool designs they offer so that they look more like real underwear and less like a training pant.

Grady loved putting the Spider-Man "underwear" on and thought he was pretty cool! He didn't mind wearing them at all especially since they were Spider-Man!

 GoodNites offers products to help you and your child feel confident if and when nighttime bedwetting occurs.  My mom wishes they had these products when I was little and is so thankful they offer them now to help other parents going through the same situation.

You can check out all of the GoodNites products and learn all about  Bedwetting Education by visiting:



Don't Sweat It!
It's Normal.

Nighttime bladder control can take some time to master. Whether it's a few weeks or a few years, for almost all kids, it will pass with time!

GoodNites also sent over a "Be Educated" Kit that included everything shown below...

The boys were so excited for everything in the kit... 

- WIN IT -

GoodNites wants you to "be educated" about nighttime bedwetting and are going to offer one lucky reader their very own Be Educated Kit as shown above including a package of the GoodNites Underwear!  (Winner can choose a boy or girl kit)


Disclaimer:  GoodNites provided The Jackson Five Family Blog with a pack of GoodNites Underwear and a Be Educated Kit to conduct this reader review and give-a-way.  However, our opinions of the product(s) are entirely our own and we have not been paid to publish positive sentiments towards GoodNites or their products!


Monday, September 24, 2012

New Scotch-Brite Botanical Disinfecting Wipes Review and Give-a-way ends 10/08/2012...

School's are now in session and it's that time of year where we start worrying about our kids and germs.  The last thing any parent wants is a sick kid.  That's why I am excited to introduce you all to the new Scotch-Brite Botanical Disinfecting Wipes.

The new Scotch-Brite Botanical Disinfecting Wipes are different than most wipes.  Most disinfecting wipes require rinsing after cleaning surfaces that come in contact with food, but these kill 99.9% of household germs and kill cold and flu viruses with no rinsing required.

They are made from botanically pure plant extracts and are an effective cleaning solution for the many hard, nonporous surfaces where bacteria or unpleasant odors are a concern, including countertops, food preparation surfaces, floors, appliances, cribs, children's toys, toilet seats, pet habitats and they are great for helping to keep the classroom clean!

  • Leaves no residue
  • No rinse require
  •  Made from botanically pure plant extracts
  • Clean easy, breathe easy
  •  Safe to use around kids, pets and food


This year on Jace's 1st grade class list it was required for him to bring disinfecting wipes.  I love that the schools and teachers are requiring this.  Anything they do to help reduce the germs and flu and cold viruses is fine by me!  Nothing is worse than having a sick kid!  If I would have known about the new Scotch-Brite Botanical Disinfecting Wipes when purchasing wipes for his classroom I would have opted for these.

I have to mention that I received the "Breeze" scent for review and although it's not particularly my favorite the benefits outweigh the smell. I love that these wipes do the job without being so harsh. I love that they are safe to use around kids and are made with botanically pure plant extracts. I will have to try the Lemongrass Scent to see if it's better than this one.

You can find the Scotch-Brite Botanical Disinfection Wipes at most Wal-Mart stores and many other retailers as well.  They are very affordable --suggested retail price of $2.99 for 35 wipes and $4.99 for 75 wipes.

To learn more about the Scotch-Brite Botanical Disinfecting Wipes please visit:

- WIN IT -  

One lucky reader will win their very own Scotch-Brite Botanical Disinfecting Wipes.


Disclaimer: Scotch-Brite provided The Jackson Five Family Blog with a complimentary product sample to conduct this product review and reader give-a-way.  However, our opinions of the product are entirely our own and we have not been paid to publish positive sentiments towards the company or product in anyway!

Friday, September 21, 2012

Tommy Bartlett Exploratory - Places-to-go feature...


On our recent trip to Wisconsin Dells, WI we had the opportunity to visit the Tommy Bartlett Exploratory, one of the most favorite Wisconsin family fun attractions. 

 No matter the time of year you visit this is a family fave-- open all day, every day with over 175 interactive activities.  As you can see from the picture above you can not miss the exploratory while driving through the dells.  It's such a unique place and a 'must visit' attraction!

 Your family will love the hands-on learning exhibits and mind boggling brain teasers the exploratory has to offer.  The Wisconsin attraction is also the only place on Earth that you can see, feel and experience the authentic Russian Space Station MIR core module.

The boys had so much fun at the exploratory and I must say that my husband and I really enjoyed it too.  We spent one afternoon there and it was well worth it.

There were mirror mazes and illusions...

 and puzzles and musical instruments to too!

The kids tried their luck on the balancing act and also learned about gravity...

we all had fun putting our "head's on a platter"...

and they even braved the electric shock machine!  

I loved that the boys got along all afternoon while keeping busy with all of the fun activities!!

Over all we were very impressed with the Tommy Bartlett Exploratory and hope to visit again some day! The kids had a blast and learned so many things, all while having a blast!!

You can learn more about the Tommy Bartlett Exploratory and purchase tickets by visiting:

Disclaimer: We want to thank the Tommy Bartlett Exploratory for providing The Jackson Five Family Blog with a complimentary pass to conduct this product review and feature.  However, our opinions of the facility are entirely our own and we have not been paid to publish positive sentiments towards the company in anyway!