The SIMS 4 Demo and Launch

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CollectiveBias #thesims4I have a pretty busy schedule during the week. I feel like I am always go, go, going, and that my to-do list is never quite complete. After we have made it through the day, the house is somewhat clean, and my to-do list for the day is mostly done, I try my hardest to relax in the evenings. Whether it’s playing a game or laying in bed reading a book. I have to be able to unwind at the end of the day somehow, otherwise stress builds up, and I eventually snap. One thing I love doing to unwind is playing a game on my laptop. I don’t always have a lot of time to do so, but when I do, it’s normally The Sims. My love for the Sims started when I was around twelve years old and my best friend introduced me to it. Ever since then, I’ve been hooked and have played several version of The Sims. A few of my favorites are The Sims house party, The Sims Vacation, and recently The Sims 3. When I heard The Sims™ 4 demo was available and that The Sims™ 4 launch is on September 2nd, I did a little happy dance!

Live.Laugh.L0ve. // The SIMS 4 Demo and Launch #TheSims4 #Shop #Cbias

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When I found out I could check out a demo of The Sims™ 4 before I bought it, I jumped on that quick! I wanted to see what made it so much better than The Sims 3. The demo absolutely did NOT disappoint! I loved how much I could customize my Sim. There are so many new options to choose from and it made creating my Sim 100 times more fun. One of the things I really enjoyed was creating a personality for my Sim, a personality that was very much me. I feel like The Sims™ 4 gives you more options and makes your Sim seem a lot more real because you get to choose a wide variety of traits for your Sim’s personality! It was a blast! Another thing I got a kick out of, was you could customize their walk! There were different walks you could have your Sim do and one of them even had me laughing out loud.

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I remember the first time I ever built my own house on the Sims instead of buying one. I quickly learned that I loved building a home, decorating it, and perfecting it to my taste. I love that The Sims™ 4 makes building houses even easier and better! I could spend so much time building a house to perfection and that’s exactly what I plan to do! =D I was always worried that I was going to somehow lose my Sims game. A computer crash, accidentally deleting it, whatever, and sadly it did happen. I didn’t always mind starting over, but sometimes it was just so dang frustrating to have to start from scratch. I loveeee that you can save and share your creations straight to your computer or facebook. That takes away my fear of losing all that fun hard work! ;)

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I seriously can’t wait to be able to play it in the evenings and I wanted it as soon as I could get my hands on it! Thankfully, I could pre-order it on Walmart.com or if you prefer to shop in store, it will be hitting stores September 2nd! I love that I could pre-order it and have it right on my computer and when you pre-order The Sims™ 4, you get a free pack of Sour Patch Kids Gum AND if you purchase it in store on September 2nd, you will also receive your free gum as well!

If you are a nerd like me, *wink* be sure to head over to The Sims™ 4’s facebook page and give it a like to keep up with the latest and greatest! Be sure to enter the SIMify yourself Facebook Contest here: https://www.facebook.com/simifyyourself. There are $8000 in prizes to be won including the grand prize where you could win a trip to Maxis studio in California! See the official rules here: https://collectivebias.box.com/shared/static/bgg20pn7ujnmkha77b6p.pdf

So, what do you think? Will you be pre-ordering the game or running to the store to buy it next week?! I definitely recommend you check out the demo and give it a little test run, I guarantee you will fall in love with it like I did!

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Dear Jay

Dear Jay,
DearJay1_zpscc392360How is it that this summer passed so quickly? How is you are growing up so fast? I wish time would slow down, I wish I could stop time and just hold you forever. I love watching you grow though. It really is a bittersweet feeling, wanting you to stay little, but loving watching you become this independent big boy. I can’t believe you are in first grade. We woke up a little late Monday morning, but you were so excited to start getting ready. You ate your breakfast, took your shower, and got ready. We chatted about school and making new friends. When it was time to go, we walked hand in hand to your classroom and I didn’t want to let you go. I wanted to hold your small hand and just stay with you. You smiled at me though, let my hand go, and walked right to your seat. I was fighting back tears, but I knew you were going to be fine.

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As a momma, it’s a hard line to walk. Watching you grow, wanting you to learn, letting you become independent, but wanting to hold your small hand forever because I know there will come a time when you don’t want me to hold your hand, a time when I don’t get to walk you in to school. I cherish these moments with you Jay. My heart is filled with so much love and joy for you that it takes my breath away. I am truly so blessed to be your momma. So blessed that God chose me, I couldn’t imagine life without you, I couldn’t imagine not watching you grow up. I might want you to stay little forever, I may want to hold your hand always, but I know I will hold your heart forever.

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Your first day went so well. As soon as you spotted me when I picked you up after school, you were beaming! You climbed into the car and started chatting away. I was so happy to hear that you loved your teacher and that you had a wonderful first day of school. The second day went just as well and you even told me about the new friend you made. It warms my heart that you are having great days in school because I miss you like crazy when you are gone and I’m always worried/wondering how your day is going. I just wanted to say how much I love you and how proud of you I am.

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Love,
Mommy.

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I was reminded how lucky I am to have my husband

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This weekend was pure bliss. Hubby has been working a lot lately so, I’ve been doing this “solo parenting” thing for a few weeks. Well, he had the whole weekend off and it was wonderful. My back has really been bothering me as my stomach continues to get bigger, which is expected, but it doesn’t make it easier. Saturday night, Hubby told me he was going to make dinner, anything I wanted. I told him I wanted Meatloaf so that’s what he made, along with baked potatoes, green beans, and rolls. :) While dinner was in the oven he also cleaned the kitchen and did dishes. The whole time he was doing that and the boys were playing, I got to sit on the couch and read. It was nice to just relax.

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Then Sunday morning, I woke up to the smell of something delicious. I stumbled my way out of bed and into the kitchen to see what it was and there Hubby was, making breakfast for us. To say I was shocked was a complete understatement. After breakfast he helped me out with the boys so much and continued to clean up the house. I had a smile on my face as I asked him, “What did I do to deserve this?” He looked at me, gave me a kiss, and said, “What did you do? Well, you put up with me working a lot, you take care of our kids, and your run our household. That’s why you deserve this.” With my pregnancy hormones I was fighting back tears.

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He also made dinner again Sunday night. It was seriously such a relaxing weekend and I felt completely spoiled with all the help. The boys were pretty darn good all weekend and by Sunday night, we were rested, and ready for school to start today. This weekend I was reminded of how truly blessed I am to have the husband I do. He blew me away this weekend and I couldn’t stop thanking God for the wonderful man I married.

What has your Husband done lately that just made you stop and go, “Wow, I’m so lucky to have him.”?

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Depression and Suicide

Live.Laugh.L0ve. // Depression and Suicide

When I first found out about the passing of Robin Williams, I was incredibly sad. This man that has been in some of my favorite movies for years, was no longer alive. When I found out he took his own life, I was not only completely shocked, I was heartbroken. This “happy” man who had spent his career making people laugh, had committed suicide. However, it wasn’t until I saw the tweet from TheAcademy on Twitter, that I started crying. “Genie, you’re free.” It wasn’t long before I saw some of the anger and backlash about that little tweet. “Suicide is not freeing.” People cried in outrage. “It shouldn’t be looked at as freeing.”

I could see the point of why people were/are saying that and I can see why people were upset by it. It does make it sound like suicide would be a good thing for someone considering it because that person would be “free” from their pain. Yes, Robin Williams is now free. He is free from the pain, sadness, and hurt he felt. He is free from the demons he felt he couldn’t escape. He is free from whatever it was that was consuming him. We didn’t know his story, but he is free from those things. But…

His family isn’t free… His family isn’t free from wondering how they didn’t see it coming. They are not free from the pain of his loss. They re not free from wondering why he did it or how this could happen. They are not free from wondering if they could have done more. Suicide may have freed him from his pain, but he left behind a world of hurt, a world of questions. I was talking to my mom after I found out about this and I couldn’t help but wonder if someone could have done something more for him or if he was just too far gone. I don’t know his story, but when something like this happens, I can’t help but wonder if something more could have been done for him or for anyone who has taken their own life or tried to take their own life. Why did he feel like he had no way out? It’s not just him though, it’s anyone going through this… this being depression and suicidal thoughts. I’ve talked a little about my own struggle with mild depression. I’ve watched family members hurt themselves, some overcame it, and some didn’t. Never once did I turn a blind eye to it or act like it wasn’t a big deal. I’ve talked about depression with them, I’ve yelled, and I’ve cried out of frustration for wanting to help and feeling helpless.

Society however has made it seem like depression shouldn’t be talked about. People should take their meds and move on. They should “get over it” and “just be happy their alive.” If only it were that easy. People have also made depression seem like it’s not a big deal, “I’m so depressed I couldn’t get this new whatever.” “Ugh, I really wanted to do this, it’s so depressing that I can’t.” No, that kind of shit isn’t depressing, you might be sad over something so tiny, but you aren’t depressed about it. Depression is a term used too much, too loosely, and not taken seriously enough for those who do actually suffer from depression. I didn’t always understand depression before I had it, but I always tried to understand it. It wasn’t until I experienced it, that I fully understood it. This isn’t about me though, this is about you, about us, about society.

If you are struggling with depression, please talk to someone, anyone. Hell, email me, I will talk to you and you can trust me. We will email back and forth as many times as needed and as often as needed. I want you to know someone is here for you, someone cares, and someone will listen, even if it’s a stranger. You are NOT alone in this and you don’t have to go through this alone.

If you know someone with depression, Reach out to them and keep reaching out to them until they let you in. Let them know you are here for them and that they aren’t alone.

As a society, stop throwing the word depression around over nothing. As a society, we need to make it our mission to reach out to those who do suffer from depression. We need to smile and strike up a conversation with someone. Put the damn phone down and pay attention to people.

Everyone is fighting a battle that we know nothing about and your kindness could brighten someones day. Never forget that.

R.I.P. Robin Williams, you will be greatly missed.

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A few truths

As I sit down and write tonight, I wanted to share a few truths with y’all. It can be hard to tell what’s real that a blogger posts, what’s not real, who they really are vs who they portray themselves to be. It can be hard to share real things in fear of criticism or having something you write about be taken the wrong way.

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Truth:
It’s hard for me to write about everything I want to write about. I’m a sensitive person by nature, my feelings get hurt easy, and I don’t like to offend people if I can avoid it. Does that make me real on here though? If I’m too scared to share a certain topic I want to write about or talk about certain things? I do think it makes me real, it just means I hold back a bit more, but I’m working on this because I always want my readers to know me. To know what I stand for or against, what I believe or what I don’t, etc.

Truth:
You don’t often realize how much you baby the youngest in your family until you start trying to break certain habits. I’ve been trying to implement new things in my house and get my youngest to be a little more independent and it’s really hit me hard just how much I babied him, when I thought that I didn’t baby him very much. Talk about an eye opener.

Truth:
I don’t go to church as much as I should, but I have a close relationship with God and I am no stranger to talking to my kids about Jesus and reading them bible stories.

Truth:
I am so worried about the amount of pain I’m going to be in as my belly continues to grow. Having a messed up back while your pregnant is no joke and the pain is already starting to intensify and I’m only 18 weeks. On that note, I am also worried about more than likely being put on bed rest towards the end of my pregnancy. Just thinking about all I need to get done in a short amount of time and then the idea of being put on bed rest while trying to take care of two boys, it scares the hell out of me.

Truth:
I know with twins, it’s not uncommon to go into labor early, as in earlier than 36 weeks, and I’m deathly afraid of that. I watched what my little sister went through when my nephew was born three months early and I saw him in the NICU and that is not something I don’t want to experience at all. I’m hoping and praying that it doesn’t happen, I really don’t think it will because I’ve never had problems with my other two pregnancies, but it is in the back of my mind since I’m pregnant with twins.

Truth:
My house is messy as I type this. Although, I hope it will be clean by the time I publish it. I”m just not one of those moms who has a super clean house all the time and I’ve learned for the most part, to be okay with this, but I do like it to be semi-clean {or almost all the way clean} and I try to do what I can when I can without overdoing it on my back.

Truth:
I am beyond grateful for my family and the few close friends that I have. Our a.c. unit has been out for two weeks and last week it was hot as shit in our house and my mom and step-dad gladly opened up their home to us for a few days and I couldn’t be more thankful. I’m also grateful to the family who checks in on me every once in awhile to see how I’m doing. I’m also grateful for this girl who takes the time out of her busy day to chat with me and to make plans to come see me after the babies arrive.

Truth:
I don’t know where I would be without my husband. He is seriously my rock and is such a good husband and father. I can’t thank him enough for being who he is and doing what he does. I know he doesn’t have to do certain things, but the fact that he’s willing to, makes me appreciate him even more. I also love that he makes me laugh all the time, that after almost 9 years we are still going strong, and that we have a healthy marriage.

Truth:
I’m a little worried about having twins since we already have two boys! After talking with a couple of twin mommas, I know I’ll get the hang of it in no time, it’s just a little crazy to think about!

Truth:
Speaking of twins, I really can’t wait to start decorating their nursery! With the boys, I never got to do that since we were living in apartments, but this time, I’m totally going to go all out and have fun with it! :)

Truth:
I haven’t worn makeup in almost two weeks. Our a.c. has been out for the past two weeks and there has been no point in putting any on because I’ll likely just sweat it off! I can’t wait to get our a.c. fixed tomorrow!

Truth:
This pregnancy, I’ve been drinking more water than I ever have in my life. I know that’s bad, but I was not a fan of water at all, but during the first trimester I threw up quite a bit of soda and now I can barely drink soda! I take that as a good thing.

Truth:
I am so NOT ready for school to start back up. I missed Jay like crazy last year during the day while he was at school and I’m not ready for that again. Call me crazy, but I’m one of those moms who absolutely loves having her kids home with her. He loves school though and while I might miss him, It makes me really happy to see him love school.

Your turn. Share a few truths with me in the comments below!

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I love watching them grow up

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My boys are growing up entirely too fast. That’s the way it works though doesn’t it? When I look at them lately, I’m just in awe of how big they have gotten and how smart they are. Time seems to be going by so fast these days, I can’t believe summer break is almost over and that school is getting ready to start back up. We haven’t done everything I wanted to do this summer, but I’ve made sure they have had a damn good one. We also still have a few really fun things to do when we go on our first family vacation! I look at Jay though and it just blows me away that he will be starting first grade this year, I’d be lying if I told you that it didn’t make me cry a little when I think about it. I’ve always heard that once your kids start school, time really seems to fly on by, and I’m learning how true that is. I try to soak in every moment I can though. I try to make as many memories as possible with them because I know these years do go fast and I don’t want to miss any of it. It’s a bittersweet and beautiful thing to watch your kids grow up, I love every new milestone they hit, every new thing they do, and every new joke they tell.

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I know I’m very lucky to be a stay at home mom and literally be able to watch every moment of their little lives and I don’t take that for granted at all!

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18 Week Bump Update & Our Exciting News

Hey y’all! I hope you are all having a wonderful Saturday! I haven’t shared a bump picture on the blog in almost a month! {oops} The last one I shared was on Instagram when I was 15 weeks. I also have never done a bump update type of post and since I wasn’t blogging when I was pregnant with the boys, I think it would be a lot of fun to document this pregnancy through a bump update weekly! I also have some exciting news to share at the end so, make sure you read all the way through! ;) Warning: My belly looks pretty big in these pictures {although it is pretty big}, but these were taken after a full day of eating! ;) 

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STATS:

How far along am I? 18 weeks today.
How big are the babies? The babies are each about the size of a sweet potato! {No wonder my belly is so big with two sweet potato sized babies in there. ;) }
Total weight gain? Four pounds.
Sleep? It has been hard falling asleep because the bigger I get, the more my back is starting to hurt me, especially at night when I’m trying to find a comfortable position to sleep in. I normally wake up once in the middle of the night to go pee, one of the babies is sitting right on my bladder so this is normal. :)
Best moment of the week? Feeling them move around so much more. I was feeling small movement starting at about 13/14 weeks, but it was only every once in awhile and when I was laying perfectly still. Now I am feeling their tiny little kicks several times a day and I absolutely love it.
Food cravings? I’ve mainly been craving sweets and pickles. I seriously have to have sweets in my house at all times because if a craving for a sweet hits and I don’t have anything sweet, I get mad! Lol!

Symptoms:
Thankfully, my morning sickness went away right around when the second trimester started and I’ve gotten quite a bit of my energy back. I still can’t really stay up too late because I’m downright exhausted at the end of the day! I’ve also been eating more since my morning sickness stopped! My belly is really sticking out and my shorts I’ve been rocking most of this pregnancy almost don’t fit anymore! My face is starting to clear up from acne and other than that, I’m feeling pretty good aside from the back pain!

Movement:
As I mentioned up there in the stats, I can feel the babies kick quite a bit and all throughout the day when they are awake. At my last sonogram the doctor said I have very active babies so, I imagine it won’t be long before their kicks get even harder and I can really start feeling them move around {aside from the kicks I’m feeling}! I can’t wait!

What I’m looking forward to:
I’m really looking forward to Hubby and the boys feeling the babies kick. The feeling brings me such joy and I know my husband is more than ready to feel them kick whenever he puts his hand on my stomach. The boys keep telling me they want to feel the babies moving so, I can’t wait for the day when I can tell them to put their hands on my belly to feel their siblings kicking! I’m also looking forward to decorating the nursery and crocheting items for my babies to wear!

Next Appointment:
In about two weeks! :)

Nursery update:
I haven’t started yet, but I plan to hopefully start getting the nursery cleared out next week and start making decorations to put in there!

Gender:
Are y’all ready for this?! We were going to have a gender reveal party and then I was going to blog all about, but Hubby and I decided we couldn’t keep our mouths shut and told our family and friends right after we found out! It has been a tradition with my pregnancies that as soon as we find out what the sex is, we go out and pick out a little something for the baby or in this case, babies, and I decided that what we bought is going to be my way to reveal to y’all what the sex of the babies are. Soooooo, DRUMROLL PLEASE!!

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Yes, we already have two boys, but I have said from the beginning that Hubby and I would be perfectly happy if we had more boys and we are THRILLED to be having twin boys!!! Seriously, I got all teary eyed during our sonogram when we found out they were boys. I am such a boy mom and I love that we are having a couple more! =D The boys are so excited that they are having brothers and our families are so happy for us!

If you want to see the ideas for my baby shower and how we are decorating the nursery, be sure to follow me on pinterest where my baby shower idea board and nursery board are!

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DIY Sharpie Paint Marker Chore Cards

One of the things I’m implementing with our new routine before the babies come, is chores. The boys have never really had chores that they get paid for. My husband or I just say, “Jay pick up the toys.” or “Kage, can you get the trash picked up.” I think they are at the age now that they should have chores and get paid for those chores. So, this is part one of how I’m creating their chore system. The first part is simply making the chores cards. I created regular chore cards for both of them and then I created “I didn’t listen” chore cards that they will not get paid for because, lets face it, I get sick of them not listening and this is going to be their new punishment for not listening.

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To make these chore cards you will need:

Index Cards.
Sharpie Paint Markers.
This Chore sheet.

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First, I highlighted the age appropriate chores I wanted to have them do and be paid for. Those are the ones in blue. Then, I highlighted the chores that they would have to do when they don’t listen.

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{Sorry y’all. You know I don’t share their real names on the blog!}

Then I got to work on making their chore cards. I gave Jay six chores to be paid for because he’s six years old. The chores I chose for him are:

– Pick up toys.
– Help load the dishwasher.
– Pick up dirty clothes.
– Make his bed.
– Set the table for dinner.
– Sweep kitchen floor.

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{Sorry y’all. You know I don’t share their real names on the blog!}

I gave Kage five chores to be paid for because he’s almost five years old. The chores I chose for him are:

– Pick up any trash around the house and throw it away.
– Clear the table after dinner.
– Help switch the clothes over.
– Unload the dishwasher.
– Pick up toys.

I am only paying .25 cents per chore, which I feel is plenty for their age. The toys they normally want don’t cost that much and if they want a more expensive toy, they can save up for it. Still, Jay has the chance to make $1.50 a day, which is $7.50 if he only does the chores Monday through Friday or he can earn $10.50 if he does chores all seven days. Kage can earn $1.25 a day, which is $6.25 for Monday through Friday and $8.75 for doing chores all week long. I feel like that is plenty of money each week {even if they only do the five days} for kids their age!

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The “I didn’t listen chores” are going to be for when they don’t listen and I will pick one chore from those cards that whoever isn’t listening has to do. The chores they will do for when they didn’t listen are:

– Clean the bathroom toilets.
– Wipe down the bathroom sinks.
– Wipe down the baseboards.
– Wipe down the cabinets.
– Wash all the windows.
– Mop the floors.
– Dust all the furniture.

Those are the chore cards! Check back next week for part two of our chore system and where the index cards will be going!

Do you have chores in your house for your kids?!

I’m linking this post up to Sunday Funday.

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Fun in the Sun

Yesterday we spent the day at my moms. The boys played in the pool for almost three hours with their nephew! They had a blast! They would probably live in the pool if I let them. lol. I just wanted to share some fun pictures that I snapped! If you missed yesterday’s post, I shared a yummy recipe for quick and easy Kid Friendly Snack Kabobs, tomorrow I’ll be sharing the new chore system I’m implementing in our house, and Friday I am sharing some exciting news!! I hope you all are having a great week!

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Kid Friendly Snack Kabobs

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CollectiveBiasWith twins on the way and school fixing to start back up. I’ve been doing everything I can to come up with a good schedule for us and other little things that make life easier! One thing I’ve been working on, is quick and easy recipes for dinner and for after school snacks. Jay is always hungry right after school and while handing him a yogurt or fruit snacks works, I wanted to come up with fast and easy kid friendly snack ideas. Which brings me to my newest recipe!

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What I love about these snack kabobs is you can cut up the grapes and cheese ahead of time, that way when you get home from picking up the kids, you just have to heat up the taquitos and bagel bites! I did it all at once and all total, it probably took me 10 minutes to make! I ran to Walmart and grabbed everything I needed for this quick, easy, and delicious recipe! I decided to try this recipe out on my boys and my nephew and it was a huge hit! They devoured the kabobs so fast and I did a little happy dance!

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You will need:
Delimex Taquitos
– Bagel Bites
– Grapes
– A block of cheese
– Kabob sticks
{not pictured is..}
– A couple of plates
– A cutting board
– A knife

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First, gather everything you need. Start heating up the frozen taquitos and frozen Bagel Bites. {In the picture above, those items are still frozen}. I made five taquitos and heated up one whole tray of the Bagel Bites.

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Next, start cutting up the grapes and cheese while you are waiting for the other ingredients to finish. I cut a pretty good size chunk out of the block of cheese, sliced it into 3 long/thick pieces, and then began cutting them into bite size pieces. For the grapes, I simply cut each grape in half. Once the Taquitos got done, I used about four of them and cut them into bite size pieces. When the Bagel Bites finished, I used three of those and cut them into bite size pieces as well.

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Once I had all of the pieces cut up, I began assembling the pieces onto the Kabobs. I made three, one for each of the boys, but I easily could have made six or seven with what I had cut up. I put the food on in this order.

– Taquito
– Cheese
– Bagel Bite
– Grape
– Taquito
– Cheese
– Bagel Bite
– Grape
– Cheese

So, each kabob had two taquito bites, three pieces of cheese, two bagel bite pieces, and two grapes.

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Last, finish up the rest of the kabobs, and then let your kids enjoy them! What I really like about this after school snack is it has a little bit of everything and the kids got full off it! Which is perfect, that way there is no snacking all the way to dinner! The Taquitos were delicious and the Bagel Bites are made with real cheese and homemade sauce and I think those were their favorite part of the kabob! This definitely makes for a perfect #AfterSchoolSnacks!

What is your kids favorite after school snack?

Before you run out and grab the ingredients, be sure to print out this coupon for the Delimex Taquitos and the Bagel Bites! You can also find more great recipes here!

I’m linking this post up to the Sunday Funday linkup!

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