Sunday, October 30, 2016

Foster Love Project: Holiday Placement Bag Drive


The call came from the social worker....could you take in a 2yo and 4 day old? A 10 minute chat with my husband determined that we would say yes. 45 minutes later they were dropped off on our doorstep with literally no belongings. That's a big change of life in a short amount of time!
In 2015, over 20,000 kids were served through the foster care system in Pennsylvania along. Many of these kids are taken to a foster home with no belongings or a few items thrown into a trash bag. After receiving 7 foster children into our home with similar scenarios, I desired to do something to help aid with the transition of kids that come into care as well as give some practical help to foster families. So in 2014, I launched the Foster Love Project with our first Placement Bag Drive. 

A FLP placement bag contains:
  • Duffle bag or large backpack (or zippered diaper bag for infants)
  • 2 pairs of pajamas (one summer, one winter)
  • Socks
  • A small blanket
  • Stuffed animal (or small pillow for teen bags)
  • Book
  • Toothbrush & toothpaste (flouride free for under 5)
  • Puff & body wash 
Our placement bag drive will run November 15 - December 15, 2016. This is a wonderful project to take on as a family during the holidays. Share with your kids about foster care and how they could reach out to kids in their school that might be in this challenging transition. Kids love to shop to fill these bags as well!

We are so thankful for the amazing response we've received around our region. We've been able to distribute over 3,000 filled bags to over 20 foster agencies in 10 counties in Western PA. 

Want to know the easiest way you could participate? Shop our online wishlist and the complete bag will be shipped directly to us. You won't even have to leave your house!  Shop our online list here. 

We are also collecting as many gift cards as possible! We share these with foster agencies and foster families when they receive a new placement to help with their practical needs. Restaurant gift cards help relieve the burden of cooking dinner for a few nights and Target/Walmart/Visa cards help with clothing, diapers, wipes, formula, school supplies, ect.... Gift cards can be sent to us via our online wish list here  or they can be mailed to:

Foster Love Project
c/o The Bair Foundation
3755 Library Rd # 3, Pittsburgh, PA 15234

So how can you be involved? Our bag drive will be open November 15 - December 15, 2016. We'll have 25 drop off locations including in Shadyside, Lawrenceville, Robinson, North Hills, South Hills, Monroeville, Washington, Cranberry, Grove City + more! Come over to our event page where you can RSVP that you're participating, post questions and see when we share the best deals around town.

Know anyone who lives in Minnesota? We're doing a drive there as well! See the MN info here.

For local friends, Uno Pizzeria & Grill is graciously hosting a Kick-Off party on our opening drive day of Tuesday, November, 15, 2016. If you bring a filled Foster Love bag, you'll get a $10 Uno gift card (per bag!!). Kids also eat FREE (one kids meal per adult entree). Kids can participate in make-your-own-pizza, a free craft from 5-7pm and each child will go home with a treat bag. AND.......20% of each check who mentions Foster Love Project will be donated to our nonprofit. It doesn't get much better than that, does it? Go here to see our Uno event page and RSVP.

  Thank you to Chick Fil A Pittsburgh who has been a very generous supporter of  the Foster Love Project and are covering the sponsorship of this post. I am taking no profit personally, all monies go directly to help spread the word of help needed for foster youth and foster families.  

Want to learn more about our foster care journey? Read some of my other posts here and here.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Kid's Halloween Craft

A few months ago, Pgh Momtourage was lucky enough to be paired up with a fantastic intern who is a student at Pitt. Each week, Robyn works hard to find events around our region for our Pittsburgh event calendar. This week, she is showcasing a fun Halloween garland to make with your kids!

Dress up your home with this easy Halloween garland! This garland is made with toilet paper rolls and a few other craft supplies for an inexpensive and kid friendly craft.

* Toilet paper rolls
* Kids paint
* Googly eyes
* Construction paper (for the bat wings)
* Glue
* Scissors
* Hole punch
* Finishing line such as yarn, fishing line, twine, etc.
* Tape, hooks, nails (basically something to hang your garland from)

1. Paint the tube black
2. Glue on the googly eyes
3. Add an upside down smiley face, then paint two triangles for fangs
4. Draw out bat wings (Doesn't need to be perfect!!!)
5. Cut the wings out
6. Glue the wings to the back of the toilet paper roll

1. Paint the tube green
2. Draw a hairline and paint that area with black paint
3. Glue on the googly eyes
4. Add a mouth and some scars with black paint or black marker

1. Paint the tube whatever color you want!
2. Glue on googly eyes (mix up the number and sizes of the eyes)
3. Add a mouth (smiley or scary)

1. Paint the tube white
2. Glue on googly eyes
3. Draw a circle for the mouth
4. Paint the circle black

Putting the garland together
1. Punch a hole on each side of the tube
2. Pull the finishing line through the holes of each tube
3. Hang your garland

Happy Halloween!

Robyn is a runner who is constantly challenging herself to achieve new goals. Follow her endeavors at

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Ticket Giveaway: Children's Theater Series

In our culture that is often overloaded with screens, phones & video games, there is something truly wonderful about taking your kids to see a live show. We love the Children's Theater Series produced by Pittsburgh Cultural Trust. My kids have loved every show we have attended and I'm excited to share them with you! Read on to see 5 stellar shows that are coming to Pittsburgh as well as an opportunity to win tickets. 

Accessible wheelchair seating will be available for most of the venues. Go here for more info

Dog loves everything about books. After opening his own bookstore, Dog decides that the best way to sell books is to act out all kinds of fun stories for his customers--everything from dancing dinosaurs to funny fairy tales! This delightful new musical, based on the New York Times best seller by Louise Yates, celebrates the power of the imagination and the satisfaction that comes from sharing books with others.
Age Recommendation: 3 - 10 years old
All ages allowed. Children under two are free but require a lap pass ticket for entry.
Purchase tickets here. 

  • PETE THE CAT: January 8-14, 2017
Pete the Cat never loses his cool. Jimmy Biddle never strays from his routine. That is, until the groovy blue cat moves in with The Biddles. Can cat and boy ever be friends? When Jimmy draws a blank in art class, Pete proves to be the perfect pal to help Jimmy find his inspiration. Based on the popular series by Kimberly and James Dean, join Jimmy and Pete on a new musical adventure of friendship, all the way to Paris and back in a VW Bus. 
Age Recommendation: 3 - 9 years old
All ages allowed. Children under 2 are free but require a lap pass ticket for entry.
Purchase tickets here

  • GALUMPHA: February 14-19, 2017
We galumph when we hop instead of walk, when we take the scenic route instead of the efficient one, when we are interested in means rather than in ends. We galumph when we create obstacles only to enjoy overcoming them. Combining stunning acrobatics, striking visual effects, physical comedy and inventive choreography, Galumpha brings to life a world of imagination, beauty, muscle and merriment. Three performers create a sensory feast of images ranging from the ridiculous to the sublime.
Age Recommendation: All Ages
All ages are allowed. Children under 2 are free but require a lap pass ticket for entry.
Purchase tickets here

  • Circo Comedia: March 5 - 12, 2017 
Unpredictable thrills, side-splitting comedy and daredevil stunts are the signature style of Circo Comedia starring the fantastic duo Jean Saucier & Patrick Cote from Montreal as they perform their distinctive style of humor, acrobatic tricks, daring feats, magic and eccentricity. Following in the tradition of the Quebec Circus, Jean Saucier, master equilibrist, juggler, trick cyclist, acrobat and magician performs his feats from dizzying heights while Patrick Cote, clown, expert roller skater and drummer, innocently tries his best to be the (imperfect) assistant. Delirously funny. Filled with unforgettable moments.
Age Recommendation: Best for All Ages
All ages are allowed. Children under two are free but require a lap pass to enter.
Purchase tickets here

  • Elephant & Piggie's We Are In A Play: May 18-21, 2017
Elephant Gerald and Piggie sing and dance their way through plenty of pachydermal peril and swiney suspense in Elephant & Piggy's We Are In A Play! This vaudevillian romp of a musical is based on Mo Willems's beloved, award-winning, best-selling children's books. Together, these best friends face fundamental questions like: What do you wear to a fancy costume pool party? Should you share your ice cream? And how can two friends play with one toy? Backed by the nutty back up singers the Squirrelles, the duo even gets the audience involved in the action. You'll be doing the "Flippy Floppy Floory" dance all night long!
Age Recommendation: 3 - 10 years old
All ages allowed. Children under two are free but require a lap pass ticket for entry.
More info here. Tickets not yet available. 

I have 4 tickets to give away to a show of winner's choice! Enter at link below. 

This post is sponsored so I received compensation or products in exchange for my promotion. All opinions remain my own as I don't endorse companies that I don't value.

Monday, October 10, 2016

5 Great Family Things to Do in Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh may have a bit of a historical reputation of being a steely crowd, but the hustling and bustling modern city is one that is very inviting to happy families and one where you and your kids can enjoy a great time.
From comic museums to swings in the treetops, you’re sure to find something on this list of attractions to introduce your kids to on the next family adventure.

1. ToonSeum
This fun and unique place is not your run-of-the-mill museum. It’s all about cartoons and comics in a fun, interactive setting that takes your kids from the front of the television and puts them instead front and center with the cartoons they love. From the wonderful world of superheroes to the place political cartoons have in pop culture, ToonSeum isn’t specifically a children’s museum, so you might have to do a bit of explaining, but the rotating displays mean there’s always something new and engaging for visitors to enjoy.

2. Carnegie Science Center
For your kids who love hands-on experiences and are fascinated by the wonders of science, the Carnegie Science Center is one you need to add to your itinerary. With four floors of interactive exhibitions, including the Exploration Station, the Atrium and a real Cold War-era submarine ship, there’s something for every child. It’s also got the world’s largest permanent collection of robots, which is fun for people of all ages. Throw in a planetarium, science workshops and even the opportunity for a museum sleepover, and you’ve fully convinced your kids it’s going to be a great night at the museum.

3. Go Ape North Park
Swinging through the trees like a monkey? Sign us up! The Go Ape North Park is so much more than a zip line activity; it’s a fully immersed outdoor experience that will totally enthrall your kids (and dare I say, you too). With 41 crossings, a couple of Tarzan swings and plenty of treetop adventure, this rural experience is one you and your family are not soon to forget. The park also has bike trails and a kid’s playground. With only ages 10 and up allowed (plus a minimum height requirement of 4 feet, 7 inches), however, this one might best be saved for the preteens and tweens in your family.

4. Kennywood Theme Park
Fans of the traditional theme park (no storybook characters here!) will get a kick out of the classic roller coasters, thrill rides and water adventures in a park that’s been around since 1899 at the Kennywood Theme Park. Have no fear, moms and dads; the rides have been updated since the Mellon family created it as a trolley park at the end of the 19th century, and it sports great attractions like the Black Widow thrill ride, the Jack Rabbit wooden coaster, and the fan-favorite Ghostwood Estate haunted house.

5. Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium
Can you ever go wrong with a great zoo? The Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium offers a full day of fun with over 400 species of animals, including 22 threatened and endangered species. Get a close-up with a penguin, a Komodo dragon, a black rhinoceros, elephants, tigers, giraffes, African painted dogs and more! When you’re done with the zoo, you can venture over to the aquarium, which has exhibits from every corner of the globe, including wildlife from the exotic Amazon rivers and snow-capped Antarctica, all the way to the wildlife that frequents the Pennsylvania area. For a learning experience that keeps on giving, the zoo and aquarium of Pittsburgh are great places to stop.
Don’t be surprised if your trip turns into the adventure no one ever wants to end because this list of good times for everyone in the family is sure to make Pittsburgh one of your family’s favorite places to visit. Have you visited the area? Did I miss your favorite family-friendly venue? Leave your suggestions in the comment section, and I’ll get my family together for our next adventure!

About the author: Cassie is a full-time mom and part-time writer, covering all things books, pop culture, and mom-oriented for Culture Coverage and Secure Thoughts. Spending half her time in the carpool lane and the other half ignoring the growing laundry piles so she can get some work done, she loves to tell stories and help other families find fun adventure to enjoy.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Idlewild's Hallowboo + $10 discount code

HallowBoo! is back at Idlewild Park, the “Best Kids’ Park in the World” voted by Amusement today.  Park-goers and families looking for a fun and friendly alternative to the more frightening events of the season will love Hallowboo!

HallowBoo! runs every Saturday and Sunday, October 8 - 30, 2016. 
12:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m. Gates will open at 11:30 a.m., and Story Book Forest will close at 5:00 p.m.

It’s the Idlewild you know and love, with a FUN, family-oriented, Happy Halloween Twist! Enjoy the rides and attractions of Olde Idlewild, Story Book Forest, Jumpin’ Jungle, Hootin’ Holler, Raccoon Lagoon kiddieland, and Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood. Plus, Trick-or-Treating through Story Book Forest, Live Entertainment, Costumed Characters, Themed Attractions and more! 

Trick-or-Treat Through Story Book Forest 
Follow the trick-or-treat trail through the forest and visit with Mother Goose and all of her story book friends.

Themed Rides & Attractions
From the Haunted Train to the Hay Maze, plus your favorite rides decorated for the season, your family will enjoy some spooky family fun.

Promo Code
I have a promo code for my readers to save $10 per ticket! Use code pghhallowblog16 and order your tickets here.  *Ages 2 & under are free!

ABOUT IDLEWILD & SOAKZONE - Founded in 1878 as a picnic ground along the Ligonier Valley Rail Road, Idlewild & SoakZone ( is the oldest amusement park in Pennsylvania and third-oldest in America. Idlewild is recognized as the world’s best amusement park for children per Amusement Today magazine ( Featuring several theme areas, Idlewild is part of the Palace Entertainment family of parks. Palace Entertainment is one of the leading leisure park operators in the United States with parks located in 10 states, greeting over 13 million visitors annually.  For more information, call 724.238.3666 or visit and
Editors Note: The SoakZone, Wild Mouse, and Loggin’ Toboggan do not operate during Hallowboo! 

Twitter: @Idlewildpark
Instagram: @Idlewildpark

This post is sponsored so I received compensation or products in exchange for my promotion. All opinions remain my own as I don't endorse companies that I don't value.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Ticket Giveaway to Triple B Farms Fall Festival

October has arrived and with it comes a flurry of pumpkin everything, fall festivals galore and flannel begging to be pulled from the closet! Our family tradition is to head to Monongahela, PA for a special family fun day at Triple B Farms. Triple B Farms is a working family farm that offers hayrides to the pumpkin patch, Pop's Farmyard, apple picking, a corn maze, human board game + much more!

2016 Fall Festival Sept. 24th-Oct. 31st

We love to pick our own apples and these trees are all at kid-friendly height so the kids can pick their own!

The Liberty Tunnel slides are one of the highlights of my kid's day! It's hard to believe how many times they will run up this hill!

We were so excited to find a brand new feature at the Fall Festival this year! Triple B Farms has created a human board game and my kids loved it!

Pop's Farmyard includes: 
  • Storybook Pumpkinland 
  • mazes 
  • boo barn 
  • meet the farm animals
  • tunnel slides
  • giant inflatables
  • duck derby
  • education acres
  • + more!
All Day Play Wristband: $13/child $8/adult

Storybook Pumpkinland is a fun walk to see over 250 characters from stories both old and new! 

Of course, you can't leave without everyone picking out their perfect pumpkin! 
Also not to be missed: apple cider donuts, fresh pies, apple cider, + other farm fresh goodies. 

I'm thrilled to be able to pass on the opportunity for this fantastic fall festival to one of you! I have 4 tickets to give away to one family. 


Triple B Farms
823 Berry Lane
Monongahela, PA 15063

This post is sponsored so I received compensation or products in exchange for my promotion. All opinions remain my own as I don't endorse companies that I don't value.