The Role Mommy Fave Five

Too busy to catch up on the news, entertainment and life in general? No worries, check out our Fave Five of the week and share some of your picks if we’re missing any!
1. You Again – Took my kids and husband to see this movie starring Kristen Bell, Sigourney Weaver, Jamie Lee Curtis and Betty White and LOVED it. If you were bullied in high school and lived to tell about it, or were the popular girl who regrets having tortured a few nerds who are now bazillionaires, then this is the film for you. You know it’s a hit when you leave the theater and your kids say – “Mom, I would totally buy this movie on DVD.”

2. Disney Resorts Announcement – We’ll have a more in depth post soon, but last week, I got to attend an event hosted by Tom Bergeron which featured a surprise appearance by Michael J. Fox (OMG). The event was produced by Disney Resorts to unveil its new campaign to turn the spotlight on vacationers and share the details on some of their latest offerings – including the launch of the Disney Dream – a new cruise ship with a 150 foot water slide that sends adventurers racing out over the ocean (in an enclosed tube of course). If you’ve been to Disney and have a favorite memory you’d like to share, your photos and video could potentially wind up in a commercial! Just head over to their Disney Resorts Facebook page and take a look…

Picture 28.png3. Sandwich 101 with the Deen Bros. Paul Deen’s sons know how to make a mean sandwich and recently, I got the chance to meet them when they hosted a sandwich making event on behalf of the Grain Foods Foundation. The brothers shared with us how they launched their successful sandwich business – their mom sent them knocking on doors selling her tasty creations when they were kids and it paid off big time. Plus, they gave us some lessons in sandwich making and shared the recipe for the ultimate PB&J panini sandwich. Yummy! Visit the Go with the Grain Facebook page and enter to win the chance to spend a weekend with the Deen brothers.
Picture 30.png4. The New Fall Collection at Ann Taylor Loft – had a mini shopping spree yesterday and since I am a sweater fanatic, I was over the moon to find that Loft has long comfy sweaters in all shapes, sizes and colors – but charcoal gray is definitely the color they’re showing most. Also picked up a pair of my favorite pants (I’m a Marisa – a curvy fit that sits below the waist) and a frilly gray t-shirt with flowers and a little bling. Plus, snagged a denim jacket that was on sale for $39.99 – happiness is…Sales!
Picture 31.png5. Tasti D-Lite. I don’t know about you – but I used to love hitting Tasti D-Lite with my friends when I was still living in Manhattan and then, when we moved, I simply forgot about it because all we had in the burbs was Carvel, Ben & Jerry’s and the supermarket. Well, not anymore! Tasti D-Lite has ventured out of the city and into Westchester and I got the chance to enjoy a small Dutch chocolate cup with blueberries that was less than 100 calories and my daughter went for a scrumptious parfait filled with berries, chocolate ice cream and granola. Nothing makes me happier than ice cream that tastes great and is low in calories. Like a beer commercial for desserts. And if you are a die-hard Tasti D-lite fan like me, you can get one of their cards at the store and Tweet or Facebook about your love of Tasti-D and earn points for more treats. Soooo smart.
So what’s on your fave five this week? Share your picks now!

The Role Mommy 411 on Disney

DSC00005.JPGI’ve just returned from a whirlwind Orlando vacation that I had not planned on experiencing this year except when I received a golden ticket from Disney to attend the red carpet premiere of the American Idol Experience, I couldn’t resist. While I attended that incredible event solo, as any guilty mom would attest, I couldn’t head to Disney without my family. And so, I flew them all down for five days of fun in the sun.
Let me rephrase that by saying it was actually five days of running, waiting, eating junk and waiting while my kids and husband went on dozens of rides at three different theme parks. In a total of five days, we hit Magic Kingdom, Hollywood Studios, Animal Kingdom, Epcot, Universal Islands of Adventure, Universal Studios, Sea World and Gatorland. Are you as exhausted as I am just reading this list? Well think about living it. Since I like to take things in all at once, I’m going to share with you the highlights of our vacation.
So, without further ado, here’s the 411 on Disney…more theme parks to follow in the coming days.
Disney’s Magic Kingdom
Now that my kids are past pre-school age, we found this vacation to be the most enjoyable for them. Operative word is THEM. You see, what I love about Disney are the shows – Beauty and the Beast, Finding Nemo, the parades, and of course Disney’s newest attraction, The American Idol Experience, where you get to play the role of judge and vote for one lucky park-goer to gain the ultimate fast pass and cut to the front of the line at any American Idol attraction. While I did convince my family to attend that show, we missed all the others. Now I’m sure you’re wondering – how could that happen. Simple. Roller coasters.
Day 1 – Magic Kingdom
In Magic Kingdom alone, my kids and husband went on two roller coasters and a water ride several times. We luckily were in possession of an ultimate fast pass which enabled them to instantly join the fast pass line on their favorite rides and so, they proceeded to hop on Space Mountain, Splash Mountain and Thunder Mountain at least four times. We also tried out the Buzz Lightyear ride in Tomorrowland, and we hit the Monster’s Inc. Laugh Factory too – all were very enjoyable – except the kids would have preferred taking the time we spent in the Laugh Factory to hop on Space Mountain yet another time.
There were great parades – which my kids missed but my mom and I watched – featuring stilt walkers, an international twirling competition and the usual Princess Parade fanfare. So while my husband and kids were losing their lunch on the rides, we sat and watched the parades while nibbling on chocolate caramel corn from one of the many candy shops located near the entrance of Magic Kingdom.
This time around we actually missed It’s A Small World and some of the other classic rides, but my kids were perfectly content going on roller coasters over and over again.
Day 2…Three Parks in One Day
We kicked off a marathon day with breakfast at Perkins where a balloon guy made umbrellas for my daughter and niece and a sword for my son. And after we filled up on eggs and pancakes, we hit Disney’s Hollywood Studios. As soon as we arrived, my husband and son wanted to hit Tower of Terror (the girls were too scared to try the ride). And so, we grabbed our fast passes and my family disappeared…until I received a call from my husband that my son had chickened out and I needed to retrieve him as soon as possilbe. Of course, that didn’t stop my hubby. He and my brother walked back up the hill to the ride and we waited outside Toluca Turkey Legs for at least 45 minutes waiting for them to return from the ride.
Next up was the Rock n’ Rollercoaster featuring music by Aerosmith. Again, the girls were too afraid of that one since it went upside down, but my son faced his fears and went on that ride twice! For a kid who last year at this time was afraid to go on the kiddy coaster at Rye Playland, he’s totally come a long way…I’m so proud.
At this point, I was getting annoyed. The Beauty & The Beast show was right across the street but nobody wanted to see it. All they wanted to do was go on rides and so I told them it was time we parted ways. My parents and I took off to the Toy Story attraction while the others hung around the roller coaster for another hour.
The Toy Story ride gets a huge thumbs up from me. But let me caution you right now. If you hit Hollywood Studios in the morning, then the first thing you should do is head to Toy Story and grab a fast pass. Otherwise, they close the fast passes pretty early in the day and if you don’t get one, you’re going to spend two hours waiting in line to get on the ride. And don’t get me wrong – the ride is really fun – you get to play a shooting game against your partner and they reveal the winner at the end of the ride. It’s not worth waiting two hours for but if you get your fast pass, you will not be disappointed.
Once we reunited with our family and inhaled some Turkey legs and taco salad, we all hit the American Idol Experience where we got to vote for a woman who was spending her first time in Disney celebrating her birthday with her mom and aunt (what a cool present). While she beat out two other contestants during our show, I don’t know how she fared in the finale – you see, there are several shows throughout the day and they culminate in a finale show where one of the finalists from the day gets the chance to win that Ultimate Audition fast pass. Either way, it was a fun experience and once it was over, it was time to hit another theme park.
Getting Soaked in Animal Kingdom
We raced over to Animal Kingdom with only 2 hours to spare – the park closes at dusk – I guess the animals do need to get their rest. So with our handy dandy Disney brochure, we mapped out exactly where we wanted to go. We had already been on Safari during a previous trip and had seen the shows as well (although I would have loved to have seen Finding Nemo again). So my husband and kids trudged on with one mission in mind – to hit some roller coasters and water rides. The first ride they went on was Kali River Rapids – a must for anyone visiting Animal Kingdom – just make sure you bring towels because you will get soaked. Next up was the latest roller coaster attraction, Everest. All three kids bowed out of that one but my husband and brother decided to hit the ride and as we waited for them to careen down a steep hill, their roller coaster was the one that got stuck in a tunnel. Luckily, it was a minor setback and three minutes later they came racing down the hill in one piece. After that, we checked our watches and realized, we had to go – it was time to hit Epcot!
Off to the Future…Epcot
We arrived in Epcot at around 7:30 pm and hadn’t made any dinner reservations – big mistake on that front. But that was okay – we weren’t really hungry yet and we had two rides we were determined to hit – Soarin and Test Track. While the lines were quite long on both – we had our trusty fast pass card and got the chance to experience these incredible rides. If you visit Disney, then you must hit Soarin’. A friend of mine told me how amazing it was and she was absolutely right. Hands down, Soarin’ is one of the best new rides at Disney. Next up, my husband and kids hit Test Track – a ride that puts you in the drivers seat of a race car and you feel like you’re actually racing around a track Nascar style. That ride got a huge thumbs up from the crowd as well – in fact, my hubby says he liked that one better than Soarin’ but that’s because he loves fast rides.
So my assessment this year of Disney and their rides is simple. In order of favorites, here’s the breakdown…
THE KIDS FAVORITE RIDES
Space Mountain (Magic Kingdom)
Splash Mountain (Magic Kingdom)
Thunder Mountain (Magic Kingdom)
Toy Story (Hollywood Studios)
Rockin’ Roller Coaster (Hollywood Studios)
Test Track (Epcot)
Soarin’ (Epcot)
Kali River Rapids (Animal Kingdom)
Buzz Lightyear (Magic Kingdom)
MY HUSBAND’S FAVORITE RIDES
Test Track (Epcot)
Soarin’ (Epcot)
Splash Mountain (Magic Kingdom)
Thunder Mountain (Magic Kingdom)
Space Mountain (Magic Kingdom)
Tower of Terror (Hollywood Studios)
Rock n’ Roller Coaster (Hollywood Studios)
Everest (Animal Kingdom)
Kali River Rapids (Animal Kingdom)
MY FAVORITE RIDES & SHOWS
Soarin’ (Epcot)
American Idol Experience (Hollywood Studios)
Toy Story (Hollywood Studios)
Buzz Lightyear (Magic Kingdom)
Laugh Factory (Magic Kingdom)
Finding Nemo (Animal Kingdom)
High School Musical, Senior Year (Hollywood Studios)
So if you’re planning a trip to Disney, feel free to use my picks as a guide for each member of your family. And if you want more advice from 16 moms in the know, just visit the Disney Moms Panel at www.disneyworldmoms.com – they have the inside track on everything!

American Idol & Me!

images.jpegSure, I’m over the age limit to be a contestant on “American Idol.” And sure, my life long dream has always been to sing and perform on stage in front of a crowd of adoring fans. So when I was contacted a few weeks back by the wonderful folks at Disney to attend the red carpet premiere of the “American Idol Experience” in Orlando, I nearly fell out of my chair. They like me! They must really like me.
Maybe they heard me sing in a random YouTube video. Or caught a shot of me performing a Cheetah Girls number from “Disney Sing It” at one of Disney Interactive’s holiday events. Either way, yours truly will be on a plane tomorrow morning on her way to the Magic Kingdom where I will meet a handful of other lucky moms (whom I’m sure love to sing too or are huge AI fans), and straight out of a song from “Dirty Dancing,” I am positive that I will be having “The Time of My Life.”
While I’ve met lots of celebrities in my lifetime, the thought that I’m going to get the chance to be front and center watching some of my favorite American Idols perform is simply incredible. I never did buy tickets to see them when they were on tour, but I do watch the show every week with my kids and this year, I have to say that some of these kids are incredible. If you’re wondering who will actually be appearing and performing at the hottest ticket in Disney, then get a load of this unbelievable line-up…Paula Abdul, David Archuleta, Fantasia Barrino, Bo Bice, Jason Castro, David Cook, Bucky Covington, Diana DeGarmo, Melinda Doolittle, Simon Fuller, Josh Gracin, Justin Guarini, Taylor Hicks, Michael Johns, LaKisha Jones, Kimberley Locke, Sanjaya Malakar, Mandisa, Syesha Mercado, Ryan Seacrest, Chris Sligh, Carly Smithson, Jordin Sparks, Phil Stacey, Rueben Studdard, Carrie Underwood, Brooke White and Ace Young.
I’ll be blogging, vlogging, facebook-ing and twitter-ing about my Disney red carpet experience with the American Idols, so keep coming back to RoleMommy.com and I’ll fill you in on the latest and greatest. Now it’s time to get a much needed pedicure and something cute to wear as I start brushing up on my favorite American Idol songs.
Gotta bolt…why do you ask? Simple…I’M GOING TO DISNEY WORLD!

Our Latest Blog Talk Radio Show


Listen to our latest Blog Talk Radio show and get ready to laugh! This week, Traveling Mom Kim Orlando co-hosts the show from the bus stop to swap stories with Beth. No subject is off limits this week with everything from hair disasters, puke stories, to weight loss ups and downs, the latest news and their upcoming trips to Disney…Kim’s taking a Bahamas cruise and Beth is going to be attending the red carpet premiere of the American Idol Experience! So what are you waiting for? Listen in and join the fun!

Secretary of State Clinton & My Personal Dream Team

images-1.jpegAccording to the NY Times, it appears that Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton is thisclose to accepting President elect Obama’s offer to become Secretary of State. And in a matter of days, he’ll be announcing his cabinet. Frankly, I wish he consulted with me – because I think I have some great prospects he should totally add to the Obama dream team. Here are some of my picks:
Mike Bloomberg – put him in charge of all city budgets
Colin Powell – give him any job he wants. He deserves a second chance with a way better President.
Steve Jobs – Official White House IT guy
Whoever is running Blackberry – since Obama can’t send emails, they can act as his official email reader and responder – just need to come up with a cool name. How about BIC (Blackberry in Chief)@gmail.com
The guys at Google – they could launch a government search engine that makes us money back and helps reduce the deficit.
The other guys at Twitter – they can host private tweet ups with cabinet members sponsored by major corporations. First tweet up sponsored by Motrin.
The kid from Facebook – He could launch a page to re-connect past presidents, VP’s and world leaders.
The marketing teams at Disney and Nintendo – can help plan all social gaming activities for Malia and Sasha and create mini events and screening parties at the White House (my kids would like to be on that list)
Emeril Lagasse and the guys from California Pizza Kitchen – White House Chef and family friendly restaurant team.
The dog whisperer – official dog walker and trainer – once that puppy is adopted, the first family is going to need help pronto!
George Clooney – official MC at state dinners and fundraisers – I’m sure you’d get tons of attendees and if you auction off a date with George, just imagine how much more we could reduce our national debt?
Sarah Palin – Governor of Alaska – psych!!!
Do you have any suggestions of your own for Obama? Make a comment and win a holiday gift pack from Klutz.com

Behind the Scenes at the Macy’s Parade

photo.jpgHave you ever wondered what it was like to stand on one of the amazing floats that was crafted by a group of artisans who lend their talents each year to the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade? Well yours truly got the chance to do just that this week when I served as official “spokesmom” for My Princess Academy. This brand new website enables little girls to pursue their love of all things princess with their very own interactive world that offers games, toys and activities while teaching them the true virtues of being a princess both inside and out: confidence, beauty, generosity and intelligence. The float is one of eight new entries this year and one lucky family will even get the chance to be flown to NYC for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade courtesy of My Princess Academy. And…to make things even more exciting, the Clique Girlz – a tween group who is currently on tour with the Cheetah Girls, will be performing live on the My Princess Academy float during the parade.
photo2.jpgThroughout the day, I got to meet school children who were given an exclusive behind the scenes tour of the floats. With several seasoned Macy’s veterans as tour guides, the kids were able to see first hand how the incredible staff at Macy’s work tirelessly to ensure that everything you see on NBC or along the parade route goes off without a hitch. Some new entrants in the parade also include Disney’s Bolt, a Smurf float that’ll take all of us back to our own childhood (gotta love those Smurfs), an incredible Oneida Indian Nation float that features an enormous turtle with a symbolic tree on its back, Horton Hears a Who and an incredible animatronics Ocean Spray float.
The My Princess Academy float will be quite a sight to behold with a gorgeous castle made out of 50 pounds of glitter (and wood of course). Needless to say, I was covered in glitter by the time I got to my car, but maybe it was all that Macy’s fairy dust that makes everyone who walks in that magical workshop feel special for a day.
Another cool tidbit that I learned during my backstage tour. Do you know how the floats get from their warehouse in New Jersey to Manhattan? They are partially taken apart and then head through the Lincoln Tunnel along with the gigantic balloons. Second cool tidbit – do you know where they test out the balloon floats to make sure they’re ready to take flight? In a remote field in North Dakota – don’t know where it is exactly but it’s a secret location so that no one gets to see those floats until Thanksgiving Day!
This year’s parade promises to be a favorite among kids and parents. The show will be packed with amazing performances – from the Clique Girlz to Miranda Cosgrove from iCarly, Gwen Stefani, Kermit the Frog and much more (heard rumors that the Jonas Bros. may be there too) not to mention the incredible new floats and balloons (any Buzz Lightyear fans out there?). You heard it here first Role Mommies – and keep coming back for the inside track on all things fun for families!