Tips for the Perfect Family Trip to Six Flags

Six Flags Spring Break
We’d like to thank Kia Motors America for sponsoring this post and providing park tickets for our day of fun! As always all thoughts,opinions, and experiences are 100% our own.

Deciding where to go and what activities to choose during spring break is always a daunting task. This year was no different. Our criteria is always about making it fun and exciting, making the most of the time we have together but without breaking the bank. Sound familiar? Since we’d just returned from a really wonderful family ski trip a couple of weeks ago, we decided staying relatively local was our best bet for a fun time. Six Flags over Texas is only 20 minutes away from our new house in Dallas and of course the kids were THRILLED at the suggestion Spring Break at Six Flag it was! Spring is actually my favorite time to visit ANY theme park because the weather isn’t too warm to enjoy a full day, there is usually a breeze.

We made sure to print our tickets at home before getting to the park to save both a bit of time and money. We also made sure everyone wore comfortable shoes and dressed in light layers.

The Kia Ride and Drive Experience at Six Flags 

Kia Six Flags

(Wait…. what IS a “Ride and Drive” anyway? I’m glad you asked.  If you’ve never been to a ride and drive, it is an opportunity to get behind the wheel of a car (or several cars)  you’ve been curious about without any sales pressure. It’s a great way to keep a current and experience new automotive technology. Sometimes there are even really great thank you gifts- see below.)

Kia Family of cars

The Kia ride & drive tent was easy to spot as we approached the entrance of the park. Everyone was super friendly and asked if we had a preference of what car we would like to drive first. Randall had been looking for a chance to get behind the wheel of the all new Cadenza for himself after I told him what a PERFECT car it would be for him after driving it during the Cadenza national press launch last year. Kaitlyn and Sebastian were looking to ride in Kia that was new to them as well. So the Cadenza it was! Our specialist drove us through the busy parking lot until we got away from the crowds and this gave Randall a chance to check out the passenger comforts of the Cadenza.

Randall at Six Flags over TX Kia Cadenza

inside the Kia Cadenza

We were really impressed with the knowledge the product specialists shared. We like to ask a lot of questions – we like knowing ALL the details. There wasn’t a single question they didn’t know the anwser to. As a thank you for our 10 min drive, each of us were given flash passes and $10 Daffy dollars to use inside the park for food or product. We also go to use a special VIP entrance eliminating the longer lines to get into the Six Flags. Flash passes are one of my VERY favorite things ever invented for Six Flags or any theme park!

Six Flags over Texas Kia

I loved that taking a 10-15 min ride in a Kia potentially saved us hours waiting in line. We also were excited to find a place to charge up our cell phones ( ProTip: Kia ride and drives almost always have charging stations.) During this time we made a plan for which rides we would go to first. We each chose one ride that was a “must do” for us. Honestly the only must do any of us really cared about was being together so there would be no splitting up the group. We all agreed we would wait in line or ride as a group for all rides. 

Charging with Kia Six Flags

Now we were charged up and ready to head into the park! The carousel was our first ride, my choice. I was worried that the kids may have outgrown the fun of it but they were as nostalgic as I was to ride it and happily hopped on their choice of carousel steed.

Next up was a Virtual Reality Coaster, the Galactic Attack! Did you know Six Flags Over Texas has total of 13 roller coasters??11 steel, 1 super-hybrid and 1 wooden! Sebastian doesn’t enjoy extreme roller coasters so I loved knowing that Six Flags has “Thrill Swap” as option for families like ours. When a child (or anyone) can’t or does not want to ride a ride, your entire party stays together and goes through the ride line. When preparing to board the ride, notify the attendant that you’d like to use Thrill Swap. One person rides, while the other stays with the child. When they return, the swap takes place; allowing the other person to ride while the child waits with the other guardian. It is a brilliant time saver and allows everyone to have a great time together.

Six Flags over Texas Kia Rides

In addition to flash passes & utilizing Thrill Swap,  I have a few more time & money-saving Suggestions to making the most of a trip to Six Flags during spring break or any time of year!

Tips for the Perfect Family Trip to Six Flags

  1. Buy your tickets online and print at home – Plan ahead for the day you want to visit, and be sure to review our website to prepare for the day. Our website offers the best deal on admission tickets, so you can save time and money at the park. You’ll be able to save up to $18, depending on the day you plan to visit. Plus, you can print your tickets at home so when you arrive at the park, you’ll skip the ticket booth and head straight to the front gate – getting you in to rides faster.
  2.  Plan your meal times earlier or later than normal – Taking a few moments to re-energize will help you stay refreshed so you can tackle more rides without getting worn out. Plan your schedule accordingly so you can spend less time waiting for meals. Eat lunch and dinner a little earlier or later than the “normal” time. This will allow you to be out riding while everyone else is eating. Then, when you’re ready to eat, you’ll miss the mealtime rush and save time, getting out to more rides as quickly as possible.
  3. BUY FLASH PASSES- I cannot encourage this enough. There is nothing better than breezing past rows and rows of other visitors to be at the front of line at your favorite ride.
  4. Take a photo of your parking spot- There is nothing worse than having a tired crew and not remembering where you parked. Snap a quick pic of your spot to help you remember and make a bee line straight to your spot. You can also purchase preferred parking to get an even closer spot to the park.
  5. Pick a meeting spot first thing- In the event that your family or group splits up or gets separated, pick a meeting spot well in advance with the understanding that you will meet there and wait. I sent my husband a text saying to meet me at the group of red picnic tables, little did I know that around the corner from me were several groups of red tables just like ours. If we had picked a spot first, we wouldn’t have lost time looking for each other.

Funnel Cakes Kia Six Flags

We always wait until after the rides are over for snacks and treats. Because we typically try to avoid fried and sugary foods, we’ll often pack a cooler for lunch and snacks in the van and get stamped for reentry. There is a nice shaded area of picnic tables right outside the park. Since it was Spring Break and we did have Daffy dollars to use from our ride & drive experience we splurged on an ice cream funnel cake. It was a super fun splurge and it was so fun to say yes to a request that seemed so whimsical and extravagant. The kids thought we were the coolest parents ever this spring break!

Funnel Cake Ice Cream Six Flags

It was a perfect ending to a perfect day! If you have spring break in the near future, check out the dates below to see when Kia will be hosting a ride and drive in your area! I highly recommend working Six Flags in as part of your spring break plans.

Chase Family Kia Six Flags

Six Flags Spring Break

Dates & Info for all upcoming Kia Six Flags Events:
4/14 – 4/16: Six Flags Magic Mountain
26101 Magic Mountain Pkwy, Valencia, CA 91355
4/14 – 4/16: Six Flags Great Adventure
1 Six Flags Blvd, Jackson, NJ 08527
4/21 – 4/23: Six Flags America
13710 Central Ave, Bowie, MD 20721
5/13 – 5/15: Six Flags St. Louis
4900 Six Flags Rd, Eureka, MO 63025
5/27 – 5/29: Six Flags Discovery Kingdom
1001 Fairgrounds Drive SW, Vallejo, CA 94589
5/27 – 5/29: Six Flags New England
1623 Main St, Agawam, MA 01001
What are you doing this year for Spring Break? I’d love to know what YOUR plans are!

Find and Finance Your Next Car at the 2017 DFW Auto Show

DFW AUTO SHOW CAR

A recent study by Kelly Blue Book found that more than 40 percent of men and 60 percent of women don’t feel confident in car buying.

This uncertainty may be why typical car buyers spend an average of nearly nine hours on different online sites during the car buying process, according to the 2016 Autotrader Car Buyer Journey Report – spending time researching car pricing, finding actual vehicles listed for sale, comparing different models and more. Capital One® Auto Navigator® and the 2017 DFW Auto Show are coming together to help simplify the process by offering one place to find and finance your next vehicle.

What's trending at the DFW Auto Show

Find your Car at the 2017 DFW Auto Show

The DFW Auto Show is one of the largest new car and truck shows in the nation – and local car enthusiasts, families and potential buyers alike flock to see the latest and greatest car styles, models, trends and technology. It’s the perfect place to check out all the cars you’ve been considering in person with no pressure. The show is open to the public from March 22-26, 2017, so come by, walk around and experience all there is to offer. This is the best place to get a close up look, ask questions to specialists, and even get behind the wheel with several ride & drive opportunities. Ride & drives are like shopping with no sales pressure – just be sure to bring your driver’s licence with you!

Finance your Car at the 2017 DFW Auto Show too! 

One fantastic experience this year’s show is offering is the Capital One Auto Navigator Garage.  As one of the title sponsors for 2017, Capital One is inviting all DFW Auto Show attendees to the Capital One Auto Navigator Garage.  Located in Hall F, the Capital One Auto Navigator Garage is where car enthusiasts and potential car buyers can learn more about how to find and finance the car of their dreams with the Capital One® Auto Navigator®. Auto Navigator gives consumers the opportunity to see if they pre-qualify for auto financing before they visit a dealer, without impacting their credit score. Consumers can access the Auto Navigator website by going to CapitalOne.com/Cars. There you will find out whether or not you’re pre-qualified in minutes, with info on the amounts, your personal APR and payment info. From there you are pre-qualified, and whenever you are ready to shop you just take your printed summary into a participating dealership.

DFW Auto Show 2017

But Wait, There’s More…..

Throughout the show, attendees can visit the Capital One Auto Navigator Garage where they’ll have a chance to see Auto Navigator website demos and engage in an interactive photo booth.  On Saturday and Sunday (March 25-26), Chip Foose, a well-known automobile designer and industry innovator, will be at the Capital One Auto Navigator Garage to meet with fans and talk about the latest and greatest in the auto industry – including car financing.

We truly understand that buying a car is a large investment for most households and a commitment that should be considered carefully. Our family will be buying a car in the next few months and  will be attending the DFW Auto Show and utilizing  Capital One Auto Navigator ourselves. I’m looking forward to updating you with our experiences! I hope to see a few of you at the show!

For more details on location and ticket information to attend the 2017 DFW Auto Show, visit DFWAutoShow.com

For more information about the Capital One Auto Navigator Garage, visit Capital One’s Facebook page.

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.
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Successful People Wear the Same Thing Every Day. Could you?

Research suggests the most successful people in the world spend the least time picking out their clothing each day. Often these people choose to wear the same outfit every day. It’s not a matter of finances, it is a matter of efficiency and conserving personal and mental energy for other, more important tasks. This got me thinking. Could I wear just one or two outfits if it simplified my life and made me more successful? What would I choose? Recently, prAna reached out and offered to send me some clothing to try out.  I was excited to receive them because the are more than just clothing designers- they are yogis, climbers, and world travelers too. This means I can actually live, work and play in the same outfits. Maybe this actually would make a better quality of life, thus bringing more success…. interesting to think about.

PrAna clothing

More now than ever I’m looking for versatile clothing that will work no matter where the day takes me.  I need to know that I can reach into my closet and find something that is stylish that I can put on in the morning to wear all day long. I also travel. A LOT. I need to have clothing that packs well and will work for a meeting or casual dinner.

PrAna Clothing pants

This week, I decided to test out the versatility of the prAna line. We have lots planned for Spring Break and I still have a few work obligations to fulfill. We’ll also be doing a bit of traveling so I’ll get to see how well they travel.  My first impression of the prAna line is very positive. The quality of the fabrics are fantastic.

The Cali dress quickly became a favorite. It comes in several colors and patterns but I chose a basic black since would want to wear it for several occasions. The fabric is a Veeda performance knit made from 45% Recycled Polyester / 45% Spun Polyester / 10% Spandex making it incredibly soft. It also means that there is less impact on the environment because no harsh dyes were used. I like that I can feel as good about the clothes I’m wearing as I do in them.

prAna Cali dress

So far the prAna Cali dress has taken me to a conference, a couple different concert shows during SXSW, a lunch meeting, traveled a 3 hour road drip between Austin-Dallas, and to the grocery store. It’s so comfortable it was the first thing I grabbed to get dressed this morning before I went to make breakfast too. I was also impressed at the structure and cut of the dress as well. It has an Empire seam along the waist and interior shelf bra with removable modesty cups. Annnnd about that…….

Can we be real honest here…. ? I wasn’t expecting much with the interior bra portion. Typically, this is a feature that still requires some, ehem, shall we say… additional reenforcement. The Cali dress far exceeded my expectations. I could actually wear this as it was designed and not feel as those I was unsupported or revealing more than I was comfortable with. That was really impressive.

Tomorrow I am doing some volunteer work and then the kids and I are heading to Six Flags! I’ll be sporting the Anneix pant all day. I was really impressed because while these look like a jogger pant, they wear like yoga pants. I’m looking forward to the athletic feel yet with a little more style. This simplifies my life and offers me more time with my family because I don’t need to stop and change or pack a different outfit for each part of my day.

prAna Annexi pant

Having quality pieces in your wardrobe that you can wear in different ways can really make all the difference. Could I wear one outfit all the time? The verdict is still out. I could definitely do a rotation of 4-5 that I mix and match. I think if I was doing that I could be more intentional about where my clothing comes from and I could purchase quality items that last longer. This is better for the environment and better for my budget too. It’s exactly what prAna is trying to do. I loved that these clothes made me feel good about how I looked and were comfortable enough to move with me to every task my day required. I will be buying a few more items from their collection soon. Maybe you’ll see me do a capsule wardrobe post in the future as I rethink my closet space.

If you’re ready to grab a few great pieces from prAna and make your clothing choice more simple, I have a promo code to make it even easier and save you more!! From now through April 14th, prAna is allowing my readers to use the code :PMOMTTC for an additional 15% off.

Tell me- Could you wear just 1 outfit? Do you think it would make you more productive?

 

 

Becoming The Weekend Wife

The weekend wife

To avoid any rumors or misunderstandings, things at home are just fine. Today’s post title references a tongue in cheek moniker I bestowed upon myself one Sunday evening, admittedly to get a slow eye roll response from Randall as he packed his suitcase for the following week. This is part of our new normal now and how we cope with the temporary weekday separation. Leaving your family each week, microwaving dinner for one, and waking up alone is quite a beige life (*see below) and beige just isn’t in our color palette. My contribution is to balance the beige with well-intentioned sarcasm, jokes and creative hashtags along the way as I continue to chronicle this segment of our story.

Anything can be sustained temporarily. That’s what we tell ourselves. It’s how we cope.

I’d like to briefly pause offering a bit more context and a congratulatory moment of accolades to Randall on his new job. Earlier this year he accepted a position reentering the chamber world as Executive Director of the Cedar Hill Chamber of Commerce.  It is a wonderful career opportunity in a field where he greatly excels and will allow our entire family to be embedded in community.  We’ve already found a new home and have been interviewing at schools in the area for next fall. Knowing that moving in the middle of a school year is never easy and that Sebastian would be making a transition to middle school this fall anyway, we decided things would be easiest if we waited and moved the children at the end of the school year. Thus, I became the Weekend Wife.

“Ya know, Marriage is the best sleepover of your entire life.”

As expected with our new lifestyle, we’ve both been fielding lots of inquiries and quizzical glances as we explain our chosen weekday separation. Maybe that’s why we haven’t made it super public as we figure out our new routines. We are given lots of “absence makes the heart grow fonder” winks, unsolicited advice, and a few quips about being grateful for alone time. I don’t think either of us is fond of the alone time. It feels more like everyone has just been picked up from the sleepover you hosted.

When we were newlyweds people would ask us “So what’s it like now? Being married and all?” I thought carefully about my response, how I felt each day as I woke up and replied “Ya know, Marriage is the best sleepover of your entire life!” I still believe that to be truest description of a good marriage. You only invite your best friends over to spend the night, to do your favorite things until the stars come out and you are fully aware that the later it gets the mischievousness and disagreements will come. Still, whatever happened the night before is forgotten as you wake up in a pile of blankets, sunshine on your face to someone making breakfast in the kitchen. See what I mean? A good marriage is the best sleepover you’ll ever have.

The house seems quieter and the bed seems bigger. Sometimes I sleep on his side instead.

The transition isn’t easy to navigate. My weekday hours have remained relatively the same. Weeknights are a heavier workload as I am solo project manager for homework, dinner, laundry, errand running, double checking teeth brushing, and lunch packing supervisor. This is the “ordinary” part of the day when we miss each other most. The time of day when brushing by each other in the kitchen holds the potential to transform into a smile and few minutes of  slow dancing or watching a documentary on Netflix leads to a in-depth commentary on the state of society at large. The house seems quieter and the bed seems bigger. Those nights, when I miss him the most, I sleep on his side instead. 

It’s not all bad I tell myself. The house is marginally more tidy. The entire stock of protein bars are mine for the choosing. There will be four entire days in which I won’t have to rush to get in the shower first or worry about drying off with a damp towel. We’re making the most of technology to stay connected. We find hidden moments in the day to send silly texts as if we were passing notes in class the way school children do.

He drives home every Friday evening battling rush hour and commuter traffic through two of Texas’s largest cities to see us for a little more than 48 hours. We cram as much into those hours as possible pretending everything is the same but an invisible hourglass consistently reminds us time is shorter than we like.

Sunday nights are the worst. That’s when the small suitcase is pulled out of the closet to be repacked with the freshly done laundry again. We tell the children goodnight and I watch him kiss each one on the forehead and tell them goodbye because he’ll be gone by the time they wake up for school. After that, we crawl into bed and hold each other tightly. In a few hours he will quietly silence the alarm doing his best not to wake me. He’ll dim the bathroom light and crack the door getting dressed in the shadows. Quietly he walks to my side of the bed, leans over to kiss my cheek and wakes me just enough to make sure I heard him whisper goodbye.

Anything can be sustained temporarily. That’s what we tell ourselves. It’s how we cope.

 

(a”beige life” is like a biscuit without jelly. Colorless and really, what’s the point??)

 

 

Are You Ready for the Big Game? 2017 Commercial Teasers

The countdown to the big game is officially on! Super Bowl LI 2017  is an exciting one for us because it will be played right here on Texas soil.  Sunday, February 5th the New England Patriots will play the Atlanta Falcons at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas.

Kia Niro Game Day Teaser

Why is Melissa McCarthy running for the hills? Kia wants you to tune in during the Big Game(3rd quarter) to find out! Watch the teaser series below!!

Both sports fans and brands alike have their game planned out for success during this game. Football enthusiasts would like to pretend it’s all about the game but if we’re honest lots of viewers will tune in just to watch the commercials and halftime show.  Companies like Kia, Wix, Avocados from Mexico, Snickers, and Skittles are already releasing teaser videos leading up to their special airtime spot during the game.

Here a few teasers and exciting approaches your favorite brands are taking to capture your attention and get you excited about the Big Game:

Kia

It’s no secret I have reserved a BIG place in my heart for Kia.  I’ve been watching their Super Bowl stories unfold for 8 years in a row now. This year Kia has released a series of teasers leading up to the 2017 Super Bowl spot. The 60-second Game Day commercial will focus on the new hybrid crossover, the 2017 Kia Niro. The 15 second teasers, like the 60-second Super Bowl commercial, feature actress and comedian Melissa McCarthy. Watch the series below!

Starring Melissa McCarthy and scheduled to air in the third quarter, the ad traces a heroic and harrowing journey stretching from the polar ice caps to an arid desert, and continues to prove why the Niro is “a smarter kind of crossover” with its no-compromise package of style, utility and fuel economy of over 40 miles per gallon combined.

In the Kia Niro San Antonio

I got to experience the all new 2017 Kia Niro just a few weeks ago. I am super excited to see this vehicle featured in the Super Bowl!

Teaser #1 Many Names

Teaser #2 Needs & Wants

Teaser #3 Big Game Teaser “Run” Starring Melissa McCarthy

Avocados from Mexico

The 2017 Avocados from Mexico Super Bowl commercial will highlight the benefits of “good fats,” emphasizing the healthy side of avocados – which, by the way, are available all year round!

Snickers & Skittles

snickers and skittles super bowl 2017

To build enthusiasm in advance of the game, Mars, which owns both Skittles and Snickers, has kicked off a pre-game day promotion called “The Candy Bowl”. Mars is asking candy fans everywhere to choose whether they’re on Team Snickers or Team Skittles.

Mars is also appealing to Star Wars fans and shelling out a galaxy worth of cash for a 30-second commercial about Snickers. The exciting news is that Snickers 2017 Super Bowl ad will star Adam Driver of Star Wars and Girls fame.

This marks Snickers' third consecutive appearance in the Big Game.

“The Snickers ‘You’re Not You When You’re Hungry’ Super Bowl commercials have become an annual event,” said Driver in a statement. “I’m excited to be a part of this iconic commercial moment on the world’s biggest stage.”
Brand director Allison Miazga-Bedrick added, “Partnering with one of Hollywood’s most popular actors is just one way we’ll continue to raise the bar to deliver amazing Super Bowl spots. We know our fans are hungry for more, and we have plans that are sure to satisfy before, during and after the game.”

What players am I cheering for?

In any game it’s important to know who the players are. What brands have totally been benched this year and who are commercial game day rookies ?

Other brands have announced they’ll be on the commercial field during the game for the very first time. Keep an eye out for rookies: Febreze, Buick, Lexus, Top Games, 84 Lumber, Audi, GNC, Persil, and TurboTax

Who’s been benched? Well. don’t count on seeing BMW, MINI USA, Doritos, Toyota, Butterfinger, or SunTrust this year.

Now all we need are the snacks. What are you serving up for game day?