Disney on Ice: Dream Big

This is a sponsored post. I was provided tickets by The Summit Group in exchange for my thoughts on the show. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Unlock your imagination and enter a world of magic and wonder as Disney on Ice presents their latest show, Dream Big. Be whisked away on a journey through some adaptations of your favorite Disney movies like, Aladdin, Snow White, Cinderella, The Princess and the Frog, Frozen, and more. Disney on Ice brings the magic of Disneyland and Disney World to a town near you with it’s amazingly fantastic show.

Disney on Ice “Dream Big” has everything you and your kids could want in a Disney style production. With audio tracks straight from the movies and some of the most magical skating you will see this year, Disney on Ice “Dream Big” will have you and your children at the edge of your seats. Release your inner child and join your children in singing along to some of your favorite songs like “One Jump”, “Part of Your World”, “Let it Go”, “Summer”, and more.

Overall, we loved the show. J got all dressed up in his best Aladdin costume, we sang all our favorite songs and got some souvenirs to take home. The performers were outstanding, I couldn’t believe some of the stunts they were able to pull off. This is a show we would definitely recommend to children of all ages. The show is just about an hour and a half in length with a 15 minute intermission about an hour into the performance, so plan your bathroom and snack breaks accordingly. There are some points of complete darkness and some pyrotechnics that might give frighten some younger children, but over all this show is really an all ages show, so pick up your tickets today!

Disney on Ice “Dream Big” will be at the Vivint SmartHome Arena until November 19, 2017 with a 7pm show on the 17th, 3 shows on the 18th (11am, 3pm, 7pm), and 2 shows on the 19th (1pm, 5pm). Ticket prices range from $15 – $50 and can be purchased at Ticketmaster.com.

Advertisements

“Spoiler-Free” Justice League Review

DC fans rejoice, the team up movie we’ve been waiting for has finally come. Well, rejoice might be a strong word. It’s no secret that I am not s Zac Snyder fan. I think his movies have an interesting look, but the editing is always choppy and the movies tend to be longer than they need to be. While Justice League suffers from some of the same choppiness as Man of Steel and Batman v Superman, one of things the movie doesn’t suffer from is its length. At just under 2 hours, Justice League is a movie you can sit through without worrying about having to take a few bathroom breaks throughout. Justice League has some pacing issues, but I felt that the story was more solid than anything Snyder did with Man of Steel or Batman v Superman.

The cast was great. I was worried that the studio would make Flash a darker character in order to fit him more into this cinematic universe that DC and Warner Bros have created. Luckily, they chose to have a closer to comic version of Barry Allen. Ezra Miller did a fantastic job as the scarlet speedster. Batfleck did a great job and still holds his spot close to the top of my favorite Batman portrayals. Ray Fisher was a good choice for the cinematic version of Cyborg, I was hoping for more of a Khary Payton “Teen Titans” Cyborg, but that would not have fit this universe. Gal Gadot did a fantastic job reprising her role as Wonder Woman, although I wish Patty Jenkins would have directed Gal Gadot’s scenes. Then there was Aquaman. What can I say about Jason Momoa’s Aquaman? It was a fresh take on the King of Atlantis, and I loved it! Because of Momoa’s performance, I have a new found respect for Aquaman.

I think all that I can say without getting into spoiler territory is that Justice League is a good movie that people should see in theaters at least one time. If you were a fan of Snyder’s previous DC films, you will love Justice League. For everyone else, I think that Justice League is enjoyable. If you are thinking about taking your kids, just know that there are scenes that might scare the young ones. There are also long scenes that might bore younger children. If your kids were able to sit through Man of Steel or Batman v Superman, they should be able to sit through and enjoy Justice League.

Keep your eyes peeled, there are quite a few easter eggs that will make all the DC fans smile from ear to ear. Be prepared to sit through the credits because you get a mid credit and an end credit scene that you do not want to miss. Because of the choppiness of film, I would say Justice League sits at a “B-” from me. There were scenes that I personally thought could have been shorter and some that even seemed unnecessary.

Let me know what you think about Justice League. Comment here or on any of our social media pages.

Justice League is rated PG-13 for sequences of sci-fi violence and action.

Character, Not Race

I don’t speak for all Latinos, nor do I speak for the entirety of PoC worldwide. This is a statement that I think needs to be understood when getting into “Facebook debates” surrounding cultural appropriation and Halloween, and this is a statement that I am making before I get into the meat of this post.

It is a debate that happens every year and getting tagged in these debates because I am “the brown friend” is getting old. The most recent debate started over an article titled “Why You Shouldn’t Dress Your Kids Up As Moana This Halloween” and it’s blown up my newsfeed. I felt like instead of addressing each and every post that people shared, I would write up a small response to everyone on my own personal thoughts.

First and foremost, I want to say that I think it’s fine if kids want to wear costumes of characters whom they don’t share the same skin tone. I think seeing kids of color as predominantly white characters is adorable and white kids dressing up as Moana and Tiana are just as adorable. Sorry, the people in the PoC community don’t have a lot of mainstream characters that people want to dress up as in Pop Culture. My biggest problem is when parents try to darken or lighten their children’s skin in order to make the costume “look better”. Changing your skin tone is never ok and will never be okay. Black face, brown face, yellow face, etc have been used to demean and disrespect other cultures for years and those wounds have not healed, so don’t do it.

img_0158

© Ohio State University

It’s not just painting skin that can be problematic, but doing anything that can be seen as highlighting race over character. There recently was a debacle down at Brigham Young University when their comedy troupe “Divine Comedy” decided to do a Moana parody. The parody itself was meant to take an outdated problematic LDS “classic Johnny Lingo and mash it with Moana and apparently it was supposed to be funny. When they released the poster for the event however, the characters were white actors in what could be deemed as brown face. The actor portraying Maui was a white male wearing a brown long sleeve shirt with Maui-esque tattoos, and the worst wig known to costuming. It’s important to note that things like hairstyle, clothing, or even symbolic tattoos can be seen as mockery towards another’s culture.

©2017 Brigham Young University

If you’re reading this and you are thinking to yourself, “I want to honor those other cultures by having my children dress as those amazing characters.” Great! Fantastic! Wonderful! Honor them. Help your children learn more about the cultures they are wanting to honor. Sit them down and read the history of Maui and why the Moana story can be so important to the Polynesian community. The same goes for trying to portray characters of any culture. It’s not on people in these communities to teach people outside of their culture why something is offensive, it is on the people to educate themselves.

Now that we’ve touched on the costume issue, let’s move on to the subject I get tagged in most frequently. Sugar Skulls and Dia de los Muertos are two of the biggest subjects I get asked about around this time of year. We’ve never done a big celebration for that holiday, but growing up my grandparents would tell us why it was important to them and it’s something that we are going to start celebrating from here on out. I’ve never had a problem with sugar skulls for Halloween, but I know quite a few people who do, so because I am still learning about this Celebration, I defer to those more in the know.

©2017 Disney/Pixar

The point I am trying to make is that if you are going to dress as characters from other cultures, or send your kids dressed as those characters, to do it with respect and understanding. Also, realize that your choice will be seen as problematic in the eyes of some, and those people have every right to be upset, so don’t just brush it off as “it’s Halloween, relax!!” Be willing to ask questions and learn, and to those who are going to be upset, be willing to teach those with legitimate questions.

DIY Green Brick Ninja Boxtume

***Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post. We have teamed up with Amazon and we are being compensated by the Mom It Forward Influencer Network and for our participation in this campaign.***

When you do a lot of shopping on Amazon.com, you sometimes have a plethora of unused cardboard boxes in the house. You could easily just throw them in the recycling, never to be seen again, or you can get some scissors, hot glue, and paint, and you can throw together a Halloween Boxtume for your kiddos. In this post, I will show you how we made our Boxtume, the Green Brick Ninja.

Amazon Prime Smile Boxes

What you will need:

Creating the Helmet:

Step #1: Measure the circumference of your child’s head from the middle of their forehead wrapping around the the middle of the back of their head.

Step#2: Measure from the center of the forehead to the center of the back of the head.

Step #3: Cut 1 inch tall strips to the length of the two measurements.

Step #4: Glue pieces together.

Step #5: Cut out triangular shapes and glue to the two strips to create the dome shape of the helmet.

Cardboard Helmet

Step #6: Measure the back of your child’s head from temple to temple.

Step#7: Cut out a 2-inch tall piece to the length measured.

Step #8: Glue to the dome

Finished Helmet

Step #9: Measure a piece an inch longer than the circumference of the dome. Start with 1 inch tall and round it up to 3 inches in the center to mimic a headband look.

Cardboard Headband

Step #10: Repeat step 9, but make the center a little wider to create the mask.

Cardboard Mask

The finished head piece should look like this. Hold off painting and gluing until the very end, just in case you need to make adjustments.

Head piece

Building the Bottom Half:

Step #1: Using your child’s shoe to measure the feet, trace width and length giving about ½-inch space on the front, back, and top of cardboard to make sure your child can slide their feet into the cardboard.

Step #2: Cut out the pieces you just traced.

Step #3: Glue pieces together to make the feet.

Step #4: Measure your child’s leg from the top of the foot to their knee.

Step #5: Draw and cut out leg pieces

Step #6: Glue leg pieces to the feet.

Step #7: Measure your child’s waist and from their belly button to the small of their back.

Step #8: Cut out two 2-inch tall pieces to the measurements you just took.

Step #9: Glue the two pieces together

The bottom portion of the boxtume should look like this. Again, hold off on painting until the end, just in case you need to make adjustments.

Bottom Half

 

Building the Upper Body:

Step #1: Measure your child’s upper body from the shoulders to their belly button.

Step #2: Find a box that will fit those measurements, or one that you can cut down a bit.

Step #3: Cut the smaller flaps that connect the box, leaving about an inch of flap on both sides.

Step #4: Draw circles big enough for your child’s arms and head to fit through

Upper Body

Step #5: Glue the long flaps to the remaining inch of the smaller flaps.

Step #6: Once the glue has dried, cut out the arms and head circles.

At this point, you are ready for paint. your boxtume should be looking like this.

IMG_9535

Painting:

When painting this boxtume, the only things that should not be painted black are the mask and the headband. You will need about two coats of black paint and should be fine with one coat of the green. Follow the instructions on the spray paint to ensure the best paint job possible. I would also recommend using a primer, just in case.

Once the paint has dried, you are ready to glue the headband and mask onto the dome. Put a line of glue around the bottom of the dome about 1/2 inch at a time. Do the same for the mask to ensure the best stick with the glue. Your Green Brick Ninja boxtume should now look like this.

IMG_9546

Now that the boxtume is all painted, you are ready for the detailed paint. Grab your paint brush and get ready to have some fun! For some strange reason I chose to do a lot of the detailed work freehand. You can do this as well, or you can draw it out with a pen before painting.  

Once the paint has dried, you can take a black Sharpie to add a little more detail to the boxtume.

Detail Work

Unless you need to make some alterations (like I had to) your Green Box Ninja Boxtume should be finished!

Finished Boxtume

Remember when I posted about making sure that you don’t paint until everything is measured. Well here is the point of the post where I tell you that I did not do. After doing all the detail painting, we noticed that the thigh pieces were a lot lower than I originally thought. So we had to do some slight modifications to the boxtume to help its look.

We took the X-acto knife and cut around the bottom of the thigh to separate the knee and the foot. I then gave a two finger space from the back of the cardboard to the back of the leg, creating a “new” back of the leg. This helps the thigh piece stay in place as your child is walking around in the boxtume. For more support, you can cut holes in the thigh piece and thread some elastic through or you can tie the thigh piece to your child. Here’s an example of what this should look like.  

Altered Knee Piece

Throw on a green undershirt, some gloves, and some black pants to complete this boxtume.

Child in Boxtume

When your child is done wearing their Green Brick Ninja boxtume, use the body of the boxtume for quick and easy storage!

storage.jpg

Now that you have seen how easy it can be to make a boxtume with boxes from Amazon.com, go and get your boxes and start building. Make sure you use #Boxtumes and #AmazonPrime so everyone can see the amazing work that you and your family can do.

 

Marvel Universe Live! Age of Heroes Recap

***This is post is sponsored by Feld Entertainment and The Summit Group. We were provided tickets for the show in exchange for our thoughts about the show. All thoughts in this post are our own.***

Two of the biggest teams in the Marvel Universe join forces to take down Loki and his band of villains as they are on the hunt for the mystical Wand of Watoomb. The hunt starts aboard Yondu’s ship, the Eclector, as he and his team of Ravagers have recently recovered the wand for The Collector. Nebula is sent by Loki to retrieve the wand from Yondu with an army of Chitauri soldiers by her side.  A fight ensues and just as Nebula is about to retrieve the wand, Star-Lord drops in along with the other Guardians of the Galaxy to retrieve the wand and take it back to the Nova Corp. After a lengthy battle, Nebula grabs the wand and vanishes from the battle. The Guardians must now travel to Knowhere to use another mystical artifact to find Nebula and the wand.

Cut to New York, the Green Goblin has conducted one of his biggest heists along side Black Cat, Rhino, Electro, and Lizard. It’s up to Spider-Man to battle this team of villains with his Spidey wit and skills. While in the midst of battle, Green Goblin shoots some explosive pumpkins toward Spider-Man but they are not normal explosive pumpkins. These pumpkins contain a poisonous nerve gas that overpowers the web slinger. Just before Green Goblin takes down his arch-nemesis, Captain America, Black Widow, Wasp, Black Panther, Iron Man and Thor come to Spidey’s aid. The villains are no match for the likes of the Avengers and the battle is easily won by our heroes. After the battle, Doctor Strange appears and asks for the help of the Avengers in recovering the Wand of Watoomb. With the help of Bruce Banner, they calculate where Nebula will appear next. The Avengers split into two teams and head off to K’un-Lun and to the Savage Land. Will the heroes be able to track down Nebula and stop Loki from achieving his master plan of Universal domination? You have to see the show to find out.

Marvel Universe Live! Age of Heroes is a spectacle not to be missed. If you are a fan of the comics, movies, and cartoons, you will enjoy this all-new original story that brings together some of our favorite Marvel heroes and villains. While the show is action packed with explosions, fighting, and motor cycle stunts, it is also beautiful in that it integrates aerial silk dancing, fire spinning, and more. Be on the lookout while the Guardians are in The Collector’s museum. You might see some familiar faces in the collection. The performs play to a soundtrack and the voices of the characters are voices of the actors from the Disney XD Marvel cartoons. J (6) absolutely loved the show and wishes we could see every performance that is happening in SLC. My wife and I (both in our 30s) also loved the show. There was cheering from all age groups in the audience. Marvel Universe Live! Age of Heroes truly has something that everyone will enjoy.

We had the opportunity to talk to some of the people behind the scenes of Marvel Universe Live! Age of Heroes and those interviews will be up on the Geek Parenting Podcast very soon. Tickets for Marvel Universe Live! Age of Heroes start at $20 and go up to $75, the SLC leg of the show goes from now until October 1, so click here to get your tickets today, and join the world of wonder and magic that only the Marvel Universe can bring.

image15

Avengers Assemble, Guardians Come Together!

Hero Up with Marvel Universe Live!| Age of Heroes

Marvel Universe Live! Age of Heroes is the live action show that Marvel fans of all ages will enjoy. Marvel Universe Live! brings all your favorite heroes from the Marvel Universe together to battle some of Marvel’s most notorious villains. 

In this Age of Heroes, Spider-Man teams up with Doctor Strange, The Avengers, the Guardians of the Galaxy, and more to stop Loki from getting his hands on the mystical artifact, the wand of Watoomb. If they fail, Loki will have the power to finally destroy the heroes and take control of Asgard. Will the heroes succeed in putting a stop to Loki’s plans, or will Loki tear the heroes apart and become the new super power in the Marvel Universe? The only way to know is to get your tickets to this must see live action show! 

Go to the Marvel Universe Live! website to check the tour schedule and to get your tickets today. Readers in the Salt Lake area, prepare yourselves as we will be giving away a set of 4 tickets for opening night in SLC. Marvel Universe Live! will be in Salt Lake City September 28th through October 1st and will take place at the Maverick Center. 

There is still time to join our cosplay contest for a chance to win 4 tickets to Marvel Universe Live: Age of Heroes, 4 Multipasses to Salt Lake Comic Con, or a gift certificate from our friends at Watchtower Cafe. Check our Facebook page for details on how to join the cosplay contest. 

***DISCLAIMER: I was provided with tickets to Marvel Universe Live! For this post and giveaway. All thoughts in this post are my own.*** 

You’ll Float Too, an IT Movie Review

The IT miniseries came out at the beginning of the “go go 90s”. In those days, parents were less strict about what their movies their kids watched or what video games they played. Kids gathered at parks and schools to have unsupervised play with their friends until the street lamps lit the sky. I was about 6 the first time I saw IT and I remember it putting the fear of clowns in my heart.

it-credit-new-line-cinema-warner-bros-television

©NewLineCinema/WarnerBrosTelevision

In my opinion, the reboot almost left me with the same feelings as the 1990 original. Of course, minor changes were made to the story. The childhood scenes take place in the late 80s instead of the 60s, Mike is not the historian of the Losers Club, and some scenes were more graphic and disturbing than it’s 90s counterpart. With that being said, none of those changes made the movie unwatchable for me and most of them actually made sense for the story. With said changes, we actually get to see a little more of the characters’ backstories.

stephen_kings_it

©NewLineCinema

From the moment I watched the first trailers for the reboot, I was stand offish toward Pennywise. In my opinion, he is supposed to be a clown that kids wouldn’t inherently be afraid of, he should be a clown that kids would warm up to until the moment he struck. This Pennywise, however, would be terrifying for a young child to happen upon and most children would run the other direction if they saw him. And then there was his voice. I thought his voice came across as too creepy for a clown trying to lure children to their doom. This took me out of the story for a brief moment, but I was able to push those thoughts aside so I could enjoy the film.

it-movie-trailer-shows-pennywise-in-the-sewer-1014616

©NewLineCinema

As I had mentioned earlier, there were scenes that were more graphic and disturbing than they probably needed to be. The town bullies did such a great job at bullying the Losers Club that it made any scenes with the bullies almost too uncomfortable to watch. It made me feel sick to my stomach, and if I hadn’t been in the center of the theater, I probably would have stepped outside for those scenes. So if you are triggered in anyway by scenes of kids being bullied, you have been warned.

Before this gets too long or starts getting into the spoiler territory, I just have to say that the movie had everything that a great horror movie should have. There were some great scares, but there was also a lot of humor to cut the tension brought on by the scares. I think that the kids did a wonderful job with their characters. After pushing aside my early critics of Pennywise, I came to enjoy the performance by Bill Skarsgård. There were some questionable edits that brought my rating of the movie down a little, but it wasn’t bad enough for me to not like the film. I would say that the majority of movie goers will probably like IT and a few will have something negative to say about it. So, I would recommend that you head down to the theater and get your tickets today!

(NOTE TO PARENTS)

This is an “R” rated horror film. There will be blood, gore, uncomfortableness, and sexual references. I would recommend not taking your young children to see this film. Seeing as the main cast is teenagers, my suggestion would be not to take anyone under the age of 13 to see IT. We had a few 6-10 year olds in the theater (one wearing a 90s Pennywise shirt) with their families, and it looked like they left the theater within the first 10 minutes. So if you are going to terrorize your young ones with this film, save your money for their tickets and wait to show them IT until it comes out on Blu-Ray.

IT has a runtime of 2 hours 15 minutes and is Rated “R” for violence/horror, bloody images, and for language.