Archives for August 10, 2018

Thomas Edison’s Secret Lab: It’s Always Sharkest – Blends Entertainment Into Science Education

Unknown to the world, Thomas Edison built a secret lab where he invented a virtual version of himself and a steampunk robot named Von Bolt. Years later, Angie, a twelve-year-old science prodigy, discovers the lab. Join Angie and friends as they learn and explore a variety of science topics from a shark s sense of smell to plants and pollinator s roles to radioactive decay to DNA and more! While visiting one of Kent s relatives, the kids come up with a great idea for attracting more tourists to his restaurant – the only catch is that it also attracts a very big shark with very big teeth! What will the Secret Lab Kids do? Guided by fun-loving Edison, Angie and friends will show just how fun science can be! KIDS FIRST! Film Critic Talia J. comments, “I found this series fun and entertaining. The storylines are interesting. The characters have great personalities. It all makes learning fun. I recommend this DVD for ages 4 to 9…” Eden T. adds, “I think this is an amazing DVD of select episodes from the TV series with just the right balance of fact vs. fiction and is chock-full of science. The plots have twists that keep you hooked until the very end!” Izzy C. wraps it up with, “Thomas Edison’s Secret Lab: It’s Always Sharkest is a really good blend of entertaining content mixed with lessons about science. This show is the perfect thing for kids to watch during summer break, because it is entertaining and yet, kids will also learn a lot.” See their full reviews below.

Thomas Edison’s Secret Lab: It’s Always Sharkest

By Talia Jacnuk, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 15

Thomas Edison’s Secret Lab: It’s Always Sharkest is an entertaining DVD that helps children find fun in learning about science-related topics.

This DVD contains eight episodes. The series follows a group of children who find the famous scientist Thomas Edison’s secret lab, where he built a virtual version of himself as well as a robot named Von Bolt. Each episode includes a science-related topic that teaches us about things such as DNA or a shark’s sense of smell.

This is the second DVD I have watched from this series and, I must say, they are lots of fun. The episodes are very informative and perfect for kids interested in science. There are a couple of different famous scientists that appear in the episodes, including John B. Watson and Charles Darwin. They help teach the kids about the different topics. It’s nice seeing a children’s DVD that is both funny and informative. There are lots of silly jokes embed throughout the episodes, which makes the episodes much more humorous. I am not in the target age for this DVD, but I would thoroughly enjoy it if I was younger. Believe it or not, I actually learned some things about sharks that I had no idea about! The episodes are short and sweet, which helps hold the audience’s attention. Some children’s TV shows tend to drag on for a long time, but these episodes are a perfect length at less than 15 minutes long.

I absolutely love the fun songs in this DVD. In each episode, there is a music video at the end of the episode. The songs are very upbeat and usually have a very catchy tune. The songs relate to what is being taught or something that relates to the episode we just watched. The songs bring lots of lightness to the series, which is perfect for a younger audience. The songs definitely will get the kids up and dancing.

The animation brings a lot of character to the show. When animated programs have an overwhelming amount of colors and precision detail, it’s difficult for children to focus on what the show is trying to teach. This series has calm, relaxing colors and pretty basic looking characters. I think that helps kids stay focused.

I found this series fun and entertaining. The storylines are interesting. The characters have great personalities. It all makes learning fun. I recommend this DVD for ages 4 to 9 and give it 5 out of 5 stars. This DVD is out now so, look for it.

Thomas Edison’s Secret Lab: It’s Always Sharkest

By Izzy Cruz, KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, age 9

Thomas Edison’s Secret Lab: It’s Always Sharkest is a really good blend of entertaining content mixed with lessons about science. This show is the perfect thing for kids to watch during summer break, because it is entertaining and yet, kids will also learn a lot. I watched this DVD during my summer break and learned a lot from watching it.

Thomas Edison’s Secret Lab is an animated TV series that teaches science to kids through entertaining episodes that are filled with adventure and fun. Thomas Edison is a hologram and the main characters can talk to him. The shows are all about science, but they are also funny and have lots of interesting characters who learn about science or are expert scientists. There is a group of kids named Angie, JD, Kent and Nicky who are the stars of the show. They are kids who are just a little bit older than me and work very well as a team, figuring out problems.

In each episode there are different stories and every single one explains how something works.  When I watched the shows, I learned how something works or why it happens. The stories taught me a lot and they also have lots of factoids, which I really like. I love factoids! The lessons are very good. I think watching these shows can actually help kids understand what is taught in their science classes in school.

The animation is a bit simple compared to other flashy, animated shows. Also, there are music videos between the episodes, which I found a little bit bizarre. But, they sort of wrap up the lesson that was taught in the previous episode.

Even though I learned a lot from this DVD, I also had fun. That is what makes it so easy to watch a bunch of these episodes in a row. This DVD definitely kept me entertained for a long time. I give this DVD 4 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 10. It is available on DVD now, so look for it.

Thomas Edison’s Secret Lab: The Sharkest

By Eden T., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic, Age 9

This DVD is a collection of episodes from the slightly odd TV series, Thomas Edison’s Secret Lab. It includes lots of science, but makes it interesting enough that you are not bored. It features Thomas Edison as a hologram, a robot called Van Bolt and kids named JD, Angie, Nicky and Kent.

In each of the eight episodes, the kids find a problem that seems unsolvable such as when their hamster starts growing rapidly in “Mutant Mascot.” They go through the Virtual Reality Window, which instantly transports them to a scientist who helps them. They usually end up finding a scientific solution.

Even though the whole series is built upon facts, the unrealistic parts make for some of the appeal. The talking shark in “It’s Always Sharkest” is so amusing that you will not care about the strangeness. The giant slime monster in “Slime Time!” is also fun.

The scientific factoids are explained clearly so you will not forget them easily! Unlike actual teachers, the characters do not talk directly to you. I find it easier to learn when I feel “invisible.” Other kids might feel this way as well.

I think this is an amazing DVD of select episodes from the TV series with just the right balance of fact vs. fiction and is chock-full of science. The plots have twists that keep you hooked until the very end! I give this DVD 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 6 to 10. If you are a kid who loves science or a parent who wants your child to learn something, check this out! It’s available now in the usual places.

Credit: KIDS FIRST!

Sunscreen is a Must this Summer!

OCEAN POTION SUN CARE 

Ocean Potion Dab-On Spot Stick SPF50: Convenient, portable solution for face, nose, ears, scalp. Liquid formula won’t melt in warm conditions. Use under cosmetics, dries instantly, matte finish. Unique applicator does not pull or drag on skin. Fragrance-free. PABA-, paraben, oxybenzone-free. Broad-spectrum protection. Water- and sweat-resistant (80 minutes). 0.65 fl oz. MSRP $4.99. Available at walgreens.com.
Ocean Potion Clear Zinc Oxide FACE Potion SPF 45: Light, creamy zinc formula applies easily, goes on clear, dries to a matte finish. Great for sensitive skin. Broad-spectrum protection. Water- and sweat-resistant (80 minutes). 1.0 oz.  $4.99. Available at walgreens.com.
Ocean Potion Convenient 3 oz. Travel Sizes: Fortified with Vitamins D3 and E and sea kelp extract. Lotions absorb quickly. Orange-cream fragrance. SPF 30 and 50 are PABA-, paraben-, oxybenzone-free. Broad-spectrum protection. Water- and sweat-resistant (80 minutes). MSRP $4.99. Available at walgreens.com.

 

NO-AD SUN CARE

NO-AD Body and Face Stick SPF 50: Super convenient stick. Ultra-lightweight formula applies smoothly and goes on clear with no white mess. Fragrance-free, nonirritating formula is great for sensitive skin. Broad-spectrum protection. PABA-, paraben-, retinyl palmitate-free. Water- and sweat-resistant (80 minutes). Great value!    1.5 oz.  $6.99.  Available at walgreens.com.  

 

BULLFROG SUN SCREEN 

BullFrog Land Sport Quik Stik SPF 50: Lightweight, non-greasy, clear zinc formula leaves no white residue. Convenient, no-drag application enables on-the-go coverage for face, nose, lips, ears, or scalp. PABA- and paraben-free. No Avobenzone or Oxybenzone. Fragrance-free. Hypoallergenic. Non-irritating, good for sensitive skin. Broad-spectrum protection. Water- and sweat-resistant (80 minutes).    .65 oz. MSRP $ 7.49 Available at walmart.com.

My favorite is the BullFrog Land Sport Quik Stik SPF 50! I love how it is lightweight and leaves no white residue!

Here are some helpful tips provided by our friends of the above products:

Sunscreen Smarts: Easy-to-Do Tips

 

  • Limit sun exposure, particularly between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. when the sun’s harmful UV rays are the strongest and most damaging to your skin.
  • Apply sunscreen 15 to 20 minutes before going out in the sun and reapply every two hours or after swimming or sweating.
  • Use a golf ball-sized amount (1 oz.) each time you apply or reapply sunscreen.
  • Sunscreen should be broad-spectrum, at least SPF 30 and water-resistant to help protect from UVA and UVB rays.
  • Remember, spray-on sunscreens MUST be rubbed into the skin to be effective.
  • Your lips need protection, too—use an SPF 15 or higher lip balm.

 Self Disclosure: I received free samples to facilitate this post. Information was also provided. 

Los Angeles Summer Bucket List for August!

Summer hasn’t ended yet! There’s still time to go out and have fun! Hit the beach! Go to all the fun places such as the beach, the Aquarium of the Pacific, The California Science Center and I can go on! Here are a few more options:

  • Visit Adults Only Bar: Grab your friends and experience the best underground bars in downtown LA. Travel through time when you walk through the doors of this neighborhood hangout decorated with VHS tapes and popular movie posters. Just follow the pink neon sign.
  • Take an urban hike at Griffith Park: Home to Griffith Observatory, Griffith Park offers more than 50 miles of trails with amazing views of the Hollywood sign and access to Bronson Caves, a favorite filming location.
  • Get a fish taco (from the birthplace of fish tacos): Voted #1 Fish Tacos in California, enjoy the famous Original Fish Taco from Rubio’s Coastal Grill.

    Tip: Rubio’s is celebrating summer with TGIFF (Thank Goodness its Fish Friday!) deals – every Friday through August guests can get Rubio’s Original Fish Taco Two Taco Plate for $6 and any beer for $2.

I especially wouldn’t miss out on checking out Rubio’s! I love that place and their burritos are my favorite!

 Rubio’s® Restaurants, the brand known for its delicious coastal cuisine and popularizing the fish taco, is adding swordfish to its seasonal menu this summer. The grilled swordfish topped with Peruvian Aji Salsa will be available as a Two Taco Plate and a Bowl at participating locations beginning July 5, 2018. Guests can enjoy an endless summer of unique and delicious tacos because Rubio’s is also introducing the Baja Trio featuring two additional new tacos and an original favorite: Mango Shrimp Taco, Chicken and Fire-Roasted Corn Taco and Rubio’s famed Fish Taco Especial.

Rubio’s grilled swordfish features wild, hand-line caught swordfish grilled to perfection and topped with Peruvian Aji Chile Salsa—a blend of Aji peppers, shallots, cilantro, garlic and lime juice. The Two Taco Plate includes fresh Hass avocado slices, crisp cabbage, cilantro and onion, and Rubio’s signature white sauce on a new blue corn tortilla made with organic blue corn. In the bowl, the grilled swordfish with Peruvian Aji Chile Salsa is placed atop citrus rice and romaine lettuce with black beans, creamy avocado slices, red chiles, and drizzled with chipotle sauce.

We continuously develop recipes with a variety of fish because we want to give our guests the opportunity to experience seafood in new, exciting ways,” said Ralph Rubio, co-founder of Rubio’s Coastal Grill. “Swordfish pairs well with our chef-crafted Aji Chile Salsa inspired by the flavors of Peru. The aji chile is a Peruvian staple, similar to what the jalapeno is to Mexico, and we are excited to offer this unique flavor for our guests to enjoy all summer long.”

In addition to the Peruvian Aji Swordfish and Baja Trio dishes, Rubio’s is celebrating its famed Original Fish Taco® all summer long. Every Friday through August, guests can enjoy Rubio’s Original Fish Taco Two Taco Plate for just $6 and any beer for $2. Talk about TGIFF (Thank Goodness It’s Fish Friday)!

As part of the company’s “Made With a Mission”® commitment – to serve coastal food that not only tastes great, but that its guests can feel great about eating – Rubio’s is also introducing a new grilled veggies blend with cauliflower, poblano peppers, red bell peppers, fire-roasted corn and red onion marinated in garlic, lemon and sea salt. The new veggies blend will be available in Rubio’s Balsamic & Grilled Veggie Salad.

For more information about Rubio’s Coastal Grill, visit www.rubios.com. Guests can also join the conversation on Facebook at www.facebook.com/rubios, Twitter at www.twitter.com/rubiostweets and Instagram at www.instagram.com/rubioscoastalgrill.

Self Disclosure: I received free meal vouchers to check out Rubio’s and I highly recommend! No other compensation was received. 

 

More Summer Must-Haves! Fun & Games for the Kids! Our last Guide for this Summer! So check out these amazing products!

.Summer is still here and hasn’t ended yet! Here are some more of my favorite products for this season!

Solid Wood Chess – Checkmate! Featuring an attractive game board with the familiar checkerboard pattern accompanied by gorgeous wood sculpted game pieces for everyday and anywhere play. Ages 8+

Solid Wood Checkers – King me! Classic board game that has captivated generations of players, this easy to learn and play game furnishes players with everything they need to capture the enemy and crown their kings. Ages 6+. I love how beautiful the game actually is! I received a sample of the Solid Wood Checkers and this would make a great gift!

Both of these games would be great for travel this Summer and also for those days at home when the kids starting saying they are bored!

Have a child that loves DINOS ?

    

Glitter Dinosaurs from Wild Republic
I simply love the Glitter Dinosaurs! They are so cute! This would make a great gift for both boys and girls!

Wild Republic’s colorful prehistoric beasts come with a rainbow-chrome glitter print that gives them a holographic look. Three different sizes and price points. The line includes a velociraptor, stegosaurus, triceratops, T-Rex, and diplodocus. Large T-Rex and Velociraptor come with plastic teeth!

6-7” range $5.99 MSRP,
12-15” range – $7.99 MSRP, and
18-20” with $14.99 MSRP.
Dino Tego 20Pc Set from Magformers
Watch out! Magformers Dino Tego is ready for action. Click, connect and create this Jurassic beast using new Magformers Tego accessories. This super cool Stegosaurus comes with Magformers squares, rectangles and dinosaur accessories, allowing kids create a moveable dinosaur! MSRP $49.99

Dolce Dinosaur
Dolce Plush Dinosaur is perfect for stimulating your child’s tactile and auditory senses. This cute Dino character has its own Dolce teether, bright contrasting colors in unique fabrics, brightly-colored ribbons, crinkle feet and a dragonfly friend. Designed specifically with newborns and young children in mind, Dolce Dinosaur has a soft velour body that is perfect for cuddling. As your child holds the Dino, they will look at it in a loving and caring way! The waterfall rattle in Dino’s tummy and ribbon neck help develop fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination. Pull the Dinosaur’s dragonfly friend and feel the gentle vibrations.
MSRP $29.99; all ages

T. Rex Excavation Kit from Thames & Kosmos 

Use the hammer and chisel to go on a hunt for Tyrannosaurus rex, the dangerous prehistoric giant. Excavate the skeleton relief from the surrounding soft plaster block.
$12.95, 7 and up.
Here’s another one great for young children!
Cutie Fruities are the sweetest snack sets that gets kids playing with their food! These scented fruit families and individual slices are the perfect collectors item for any foodie in the making. Get ready for endless amounts of Cutie Fruities fun with over eight full fruit families and 40 individual slices to collect. With two options for your fruit-lover, the Cutie Fruities Basket or Minis Cup, these collectibles are a 100% sweet surprise!

Open the Cutie Fruities Basket for an entire fruit family – Mommy, Daddy, Baby and More! The Fruit Basket comes with four scented plush fruit slices wrapped in a fruit peel, a fruit fortune and sticker sheet. Turn your basket into a fruit themed play set for hours of fruit fun!

The Cutie Fruities Minis Cup is perfect for collectors. Filled with three mystery plush and over 40 to collect – common, rare and limited edition – these cups are the must-have travel sized snack for all collectors!

These can be found at Walmart.com and also Amazon.com. They really are cute and I think that young children will love them!

Celebrate Best Friends with the latest Cutie Stix Collectible Packs!

The older kids will love this next one!

This card game is fun for families with kids 13 years old and older! There is 200 PG-13 friendly (but pretty awful) stuff happens event cards. Yes, there is some messed up stuff on the cards and the idea is to rank them based on how bad they really are. This one is for 2 or more players and would be a hit to take on summer travel with older kids! I find that it is sometimes difficult to find games for kids in this age range and this one is a must! Can only be found at Walmart! Find out more here!

We have teamed up for a Giveaway on this one! To enter, simply leave a comment below! Deadline to enter is August 15th, 2018 at noon PST.

 

Self Disclosure: I received samples of the games and toys listed in this post. No other compensation was received and I only post products that I recommend. The image was provided for Cutie Fruities and Cutie Stix.