Sunday, January 1, 2017

5 Wits is Fun for the Whole Family!


Hope all my readers had a fabulous winter break! For the first time in years we had no obligations over the holiday break so we really got a chance just to do some local attractions with the Monsters and relax as a family. One of my favorite trips this week was visiting 5 Wits in Foxboro. If you don't know about this place, you are missing out. 5 Wits was created in 2004 to offer a live-action, immersive adventure experience within a realistic, hands-on setting. Rather than watching an action movie or playing a video game, customers get the chance to BE the action hero and get inside that movie or video game.



We got a chance to experience both adventures: Espionage and 20,000 Leagues. First up was Espionage where we needed to discover the mole in an organization. We slid through laser traps and debugged rooms while narrowly avoiding a massive explosion! In 20,000 Leagues we learned that Jules Verne perhaps left something more than fiction in his "novel" 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. Through puzzle solving we discovered the clues left in the Nautilus and even took part in an epic sea battle!




Both adventures were awesome, and part of that is because of the hosts that guide you along the way. They are humorous and also helpful in solving the puzzles when you get totally stuck. Some advice for when you go: get in there and play! On Espionage we were the only guests and had to solve all the puzzles ourselves. In 20,000 Leagues other families were in our party and seemed hesitant to get in there and touch stuff and try to solve the problems so we ended up doing most of it again (fine by us!) To have the best 5 Wits experience allow yourself to be a kid again and really play the game...trust me, you'll have a blast.

Right in the thick of a major spy mission moment!

Each adventure takes about an hour, and if you pay for one, you can add on the second for only $5 more which is a huge bargain and definitely worth it. So what are you waiting for? Get off your couch and get in the game at 5 Wits!


Sunday, December 25, 2016

A Dog's Purpose: Free Advanced Screening!



You know a movie is going to be good when just the trailer gets you teary eyed. That's how I knew I would definitely be seeing A Dog's Purpose. Based on the beloved bestselling novel by W. Bruce Cameron, A Dog’s Purpose, from director Lasse Hallström (The Cider House Rules, Dear John, The 100-Foot Journey), shares the soulful and surprising story of one devoted dog (voiced by Josh Gad) who finds the meaning of his own existence through the lives of the humans he teaches to laugh and love. The family film told from the dog’s perspective also stars Dennis Quaid, Peggy Lipton, Britt Robertson, K.J. Apa, Juilet Rylance, Luke Kirby, John Ortiz and Pooch Hall.

A Dog’s Purpose is produced by Gavin Polone (Zombieland, TV’s Gilmore Girls). The film from Amblin Entertainment and Walden Media is executive produced by Alan Blomquist and Mark Sourian, and it will be distributed by Universal Pictures.

The film opens nationally on January 27, but how would you like to see it on January 24th for FREE in Boston. I have a link for you to enter to win a pair of passes to an advanced screening (make sure you list Lil' Blonde Monsters as the site that sent you.) Click HERE to enter and get your tissues ready!

Monday, December 19, 2016

Moana Toys from Disney Store are Perfect Christmas Gifts

Are your kids obsessed with Moana? I don't think Zoe has stopped singing "How Far I'll Go" since we saw the movie. With Christmas creeping up at lightening speed, I need to get to The Disney Store to get some of their amazing Moana line.

Moana Costume for Kids

The Moana dress up is super accurate to the movie and I know Lea would love it!

It's Maui time baby! This talking action figure would be a dream for Zoe who thinks Maui was just hilarious!

Talking Maui Action Figure - Disney Moana
Finally, who can resist the classic Moana doll. So pretty and detailed and the perfect addition for any doll lover's collection.

Disney Moana Classic Doll - 11''
You can get these and more from the Disney Store and bring some Christmas joy to your little Moana fans.




Saturday, December 3, 2016

Once Shines at PPAC

Last night I got a chance to check out Once at PPAC and it was tremendous! Once is the celebrated musical based on the Academy Award-winning film. It tells the story of an Irish musician and a Czech immigrant drawn together by their shared love of music. Over the course of one fateful week, their unexpected friendship and collaboration evolves into a powerful but complicated romance, heightened by the raw emotion of the songs they create together. Brought to the stage by an award-winning team of visionary artists and featuring an ensemble cast of gifted actor/musicians, Once is a musical celebration of life and love: thrilling in its originality, daring in its honesty... and unforgettable in every way.

Sam Cieri and Mackenzie Lesser-Roy shine in the lead roles of Guy and Girl

I place the film version of Once amongst my top three favorite films, so I was nervous how the show would live up to my expectations. I have to say, the show is a lot different than the film, but that's what makes it special. Perhaps the biggest change is that there is a much larger ensemble cast that stay onstage the entire show. The film only features the characters of guy (played by Sam Cieri here) and Girl (Mackenzie Lesser-Roy) but the musical offers a colorful assortment of characters who add their own stories to Guy and Girl's as well as musical accompaniment. These additional characters in this production add a lot of laugh out loud comedy that is not in the movie which adds a unique touch to a familiar story (just try not to laugh at the karate chopping store owner!) The show also has amazing choreography that adds so much dimension to the emotional aspect of the show. In particular, the choreography to "If You Want Me" was so moving. Overall, I was pleasantly surprised by the innovative and fresh feel of a favorite film.

Amazing musicians round out the ensemble

The show is playing through tomorrow and tickets are still available. Tickets for Once are available now and can be purchased at the PPAC Box Office (located at 220 Weybosset Street in downtown Providence), online at www.ppacri.org and by phone at (401) 421-ARTS (2787). Tickets start at only $36. Box Office Hours are Monday – Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and two hours prior to curtain times on performance days. Make sure to get there early to have a drink at the on stage bar while the cast warms up. Tickets to the show would make an AMAZING early Christmas gift, so don't miss this "ONCE" in a lifetime opportunity and get your tickets now.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Hot Holiday Gifts: The BFG and Pete's Dragon are Disney Magic

You know what makes perfect Christmas Presents: Disney movies! Seriously, what could be more magical under the Christmas tree than some pixie dust? Lucky for you, two new Disney movies are available for home purchase this Tuesday.


First up, The BFG. In the middle of the night, when every child and every grown-up is in a deep, deep sleep, all the dark things come out of hiding and have the world to themselves. That’s what Sophie (Ruby Barnhill) , a precocious 10-year-old, has been told, and that’s what she believes as she lies sleepless in her own bed at her London orphanage. While all the other girls in the dormitory dream their dreams, Sophie risks breaking one of Mrs. Clonkers’ many rules to climb out of her bed, slip on her glasses, lean out the window and see what the world looks like in the moonlit silence of the witching hour. Outside, in the ghostly, silvery light, her familiar street looks more like a fairy tale village than the one she knows, and out of the darkness comes something long and tall…very, very tall. That something is a giant who takes Sophie and whisks her away to his home in a land far, far away. Fortunately for Sophie, he is the Big Friendly Giant (BFG) and nothing like the other inhabitants of Giant Country. With each having been on their own in the world up until now, an unexpected friendship blossoms.

I don't want to give away much more of the story, but it involves some treacherous other not so BF giants, a trip to the Queen, and a journey into the world of dreams. The entire film is jaw droopingly beautiful, absolute Disney magic, and frankly quite heartwarming. I may have even shed a few tears during the last scene. The Monsters have been watching our Disney Movies Anywhere copy of the movie on repeat, and I'm sure your own kids will do the same.


Also available this week is Pete's Dragon. The thing I love so much about this one is that it is a quintessential "boy's Disney movie." Don't get me wrong, my girls were in awe of it and loved it, but it has been awhile since Disney offered a strong adventurous boy movie like Peter Pan. This Pete's Dragon is a lot different than the cartoon classic version. After being orphaned tragically, Pete stumbles upon his dragon in the forest and lives a rustic life with him until forest uprooting humans interfere. Pete will do anything to get back to his dragon, but also finds something in the process he was never expecting: a human family to love.

The movie is full of action and also big emotional moments. Like the BFG, there may have been a few tears shed at the end of this film.

I absolutely loved both of these movies and give them two thumbs up. This Christmas, make your kid the luckiest on the street, and gift them with Disney movie magic! 




Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug and Cat Noir Toys are Must Haves this Holiday Season



You know by now that the Monsters are obsessed with Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug and Cat Noir, so they were so excited to get to try out some of the new Miraculous toy line. Bonzai toys has everything from mini action figures to larger Barbie like dolls available for purchase this holiday season.

Boys have had super heroes forever and its now a chance for girls to have their very own aspirational role model. Girls and boys can watch the show on NICKELODEON on Saturday mornings and get to see more new episodes on Nick and even have fun at Nick.com or the Nick app. Your little Miraculous fan would have a blast playing with these toys, so pick up your own this holiday season!





Keep your eyes peeled for a Miraculous giveaway!

You can pick up your own toys HERE

I was gifted a box of Miraculous products from Zag Studios to feature on the site. All opinions are my own.


Monday, November 21, 2016

Cirque Dreams Holidaze: Coming Soon to Boston for Holiday Magic!


If you read the blog regularly, you may know I have a true love for all cirque style shows. I also have a deep love for all things Christmas. That is why I am beyond excited to get to see Cirque Dreams Holidaze when it comes to the Boch Center Shubert Theatre December 9-11, 2016 for six unforgettable performances.


Holidzae is so many things: it’s a cirque show…Broadway musical…holiday spectacular…and family show all in one. The show comes from the creators of the groundbreaking Broadway hit Cirque Dreams Jungle Fantasy. In Cirque Dreams Holidaze, Broadway director Neil Goldberg re-imagines the holiday season with over 300 costumes, 20 acts and 30 performers from 12 countries showcasing an endless variety of imaginative, heart-pounding and gravity- defying feats you have to see to believe. Experience gingerbread men flipping midair, toy soldiers marching on thin wires along with snowmen, icemen and penguins, balancing, jumping and spinning in disbelief.




The show celebrates the most wonderful time of the year with singers, choreography and exciting production numbers. Performers and costumed ornament characters twirl, bounce and soar thru the air to original music and seasonal favorites brought to life within a stage setting of gigantic gifts, colossal candy canes and 30-foot towering trees & soldiers creating a larger than life wonderland of amazement. Think it sounds amazing? Check out this awesome sizzle reel then:


You do not want to miss out on this show. I will be covering opening night, but don't wait until you read my review to get your own tickets. Tickets for Cirque Dreams Holidaze are on sale now and are available at the Boch Center Box Office, Bochcenter.org, or by calling (866) 348-9738.