Over The Top Mommy

Entertainment

Shopkins LIVE! National Tour To Stop at Over 75 U.S. Cities

I’m pretty sure every kid’s dream just came true with the latest news….Shopkins Live!, the first live theatrical production based on the phenomenally successful Shopkins toy brand will embark on a national tour of over 75 U.S. cities!, premiering in Buffalo, New York, on Thursday, September 14, 2017! unnamed (5)

Based on America’s #1 toy brand, Youtube sensation and international toy phenomenon created in Australia by Moose Toys, Shopkins Live! will feature The Shoppies and Shopkins characters taking the stage with an all new storyline, original pop music and video highlights as ‘Jessicake’, ‘Bubbleisha’, ‘Peppa-Mint’ and friends prepare for Shopville’s annual “Funtastic Food and Fashion Fair”.

Since its launch in 2014, the Shopkins brand continues to be a hot ticket item for children worldwide. Shoppies dolls consistently rank as the #1 kids toy in the U.S.; the first-ever Shopkins movie, Shopkins Chef Club, was released last year by Universal Pictures Home Entertainment; and numerous dedicated apps continue to expand the brand’s ever-growing world.

Shopkins Live! will run for approximately 90 minutes, with one 15-minute intermission. Tickets will go on sale beginning Friday, April 28. For more information on Shopkins Live! , including a list of cities the tour will stop at, visit http://www.shopkinsliveontour.com and sign-up to be the first to hear about the pre-sale offer, on-sale dates and North American tour dates.

 

This is not a sponsored post. Logo is property of Shopkins. All opinions are 100% my own.

 

 

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‘The Book of Henry” Official Trailer and Poster

Have you watched the official “The Book of Henry” trailer yet? Directed by Colin Trevorrow (Jurassic World, Safety Not Guaranteed) and starring Academy Award™ nominee Naomi Watts (The Impossible), Jaeden Lieberher (St. Vincent), Jacob Tremblay (Room), Sarah Silverman (Wreck-It Ralph), and Maddie Ziegler (Dance Moms), “The Book of Henry” looks like it’s going to be one to watch this Summer!  ,
book-of-henry-chalkboard-art

Watch the official trailer here: 
Here’s a synopsis of the film:
Sometimes things are not always what they seem, especially in the small suburban town where the Carpenter family lives. Single suburban mother Susan Carpenter (Naomi Watts) works as a waitress at a diner, alongside feisty family friend Sheila (Sarah Silverman). Her younger son Peter (Jacob Tremblay) is a playful 8-year-old. Taking care of everyone and everything in his own unique way is Susan’s older son Henry (Jaeden Lieberher), age 11. Protector to his adoring younger brother and tireless supporter of his often self-doubting mother – and, through investments, of the family as a whole – Henry blazes through the days like a comet. Susan discovers that the family next door, which includes Henry’s kind classmate Christina (Maddie Ziegler), has a dangerous secret – and that Henry has devised a surprising plan to help. As his brainstormed rescue plan for Christina takes shape in thrilling ways, Susan finds herself at the center of it.the-book-of-henry-new-artworkI cannot wait for “The Book of Henry” to to hit theaters in select cities on June 16, 2017. Will you be heading out to see it?

For the latest updates and news about “The Book of Henry”, visit the film’s official website here.

This is not a sponsored post. Artwork and trailer are property of Focus Features. All opinions are 100% my own.

 

An American Girl Story – Ivy and Julie 1976: A Happy Balance: Now Streaming on Prime #IvyandJulie

This is a sponsored by KidzVuz for Amazon Studios. All opinions are 100% my own.

 

American Girl is one of my daughter’s favorite brands. As a mom, it’s one of my favorites as well. Not only because I love the dolls and all of the adorable products, but also for all American Girl does to empower and encourage girls to be whatever they dream of and to pursue their goals.

My daughter loves to read the American Girl books, especially the ones that come with the historical dolls and are representative of that doll’s time period. Even more fun is when the stories are taken from the written form to the onscreen versions. Have you watched any of the movies on Prime yet? american-girl-story-ivy-and-julie-coverI’m excited for the third and newest American Girl Story – Ivy and Julie 1976: A Happy Balance to stream on Prime Video. Starting March 24, this Amazon Original Special will be availalbe to stream on Prime Video in the US, UK, Germany and Austria. melody1The first two original American Girl specials for Prime Video, An American Girl Story – Melody 1963: Love Has to Win and An American Girl StoryMaryellen 1955: Extraordinary Christmas, were based on the characters Melody Ellison and Maryellen Larkin from the BeForever historical-inspired character line. Both specials are also currently available to stream on Prime Video.ivy-and-julie-stream-on-primeI was excited for the opportunity to stream the latest Amazon Original Special, Ivy & Julie 1976: A Happy Balance and I absolutely adored it. Without posting any real spoilers, I can share about some of the elements in the film really resonated with me.

Here’s a brief synopsis of Ivy and Julie 1976: A Happy Balance: 
A story set in San Francisco in 1976. Ivy Ling (Nina Lu, BUNK’D) is a 10-year-old Chinese-American girl who struggles with finding a balance between her two cultural identities: Chinese and American. With her family’s Chinese traditions and obligations, she wishes to be like her all-American best friend, Julie Albright (Hannah Nordberg, General Hospital). When her gymnastics tournament and family’s big Chinese New Year dinner land on the same day, Ivy relies on Julie to guide her with a difficult choice. The special also stars Gwendoline Yeo (American Crime) and Lance Lim (School of Rock).

Watch this preview of American Girl Story –Ivy & Julie 1976: A Happy Balance: 

First of all, I loved the fact that the story was set in 1976 but presented what still seem to be common “modern day challenges” for families. As a mom of a pre-tween daughter, I, too, encounter the struggle between getting my daughter to do what our family is going and wanting to do what she wants to do. I feel like my own daughter can really relate to Ivy’s character because they are both at the age where girls tend to struggle with trying to fit in.American-Girl-Story-Ivy-and-JulieI love the friendship between Ivy and her best friend, Julie, and how much they care about one another and are a support system for each other. In the story, they are each dealing with different issues but really listen to each other for advice when it comes to their uncertainty about what to do about each of their own unique situations. These are the kind of girls you want your own daughter to hang around with. (Too bad they’re fictional characters, right?)

It seemed as though people, especially other children, in the 70’s weren’t quite as sensitive and accepting of different cultures they way they are now.  Ivy was very hesitant to share about her own family’s culture with the other girls in her gym. It was understandable though because the other girls seemed unfamiliar with these other cultural traditions, like when “Chinese School” was mentioned and none of the other girls knew what that was. while her parents and grandparents want her to become more educated about her Chinese roots. She reminds me of myself, as a kid, when she fights almost every cultural influence in her family, the way I fought my parents at her age when they wanted me to be more educated about Judaism. I felt like I could personally relate to Ivy and her struggle with trying to be a “typical” girl in the 70’s because I hid the fact that I was Jewish when I was younger for fear of being teased. How awful is that?

Ivy’s grandparents are so much more than just typical grandparents and the scenes where they appear with her really warmed my heart. While her mother is attending law school full-time, in addition to her father working to support the family, Her grandparents go beyond their traditional role as they lend a hand with the children on quite a few occasions.while her mother is attending law school, in order to achieve her own dreams. Although the grandparents seem so “traditional”, Ivy comes to know that deep down, they really “get her”.

I cried a lot of happy tears watching An American Girl Story – Ivy & Julie 1976: A Happy Balance, which most likely stems from my being a mom. My daughter also loved the film. Also, it has a happy ending and those are my favorite kinds of endings.

Prime members can now stream this special at no additional cost to their membership. Enjoy using the Amazon Prime Video app for TVs, connected devices including Amazon Fire TV, and mobile devices, or online at http://www.amazon.com/originals. Customers who are not already a Prime member can sign up for a free trial at http://www.amazon.com/prime. For a list of all Amazon Video compatible devices, visit here.

Images, clips, and logos are property of American Girl and Amazon. 

 

New Despicable Me 3 Trailer + Gru is a Twin?

I cannot believe it….Gru has an identical twin brother! His name is Dru! How hilarious is this poster for the upcoming “Despicable Me 3”? Now I really can’t wait to see the film and learn the history of these two brothers! I can only imagine how opposite they must be! despicable-me-3

From the creators of Despicable Me, Despicable Me 2, and Minions, Illumination brings us another chapter in the adventures of Gru, Lucy, their adorable daughters—Margo, Edith and Agnes, and don’t forget those adorable Minions too!

Watch this hilarious new trailer: 

Joining Steve Carell (Gru and Dru) and Kristen Wiig in Despicable Me 3 is Emmy, Tony and Grammy Award winner Trey Parker, co-creator of Comedy Central’s global phenomenon South Park and the Broadway smash The Book of Mormon. Parker voices the role of villain Balthazar Bratt, a former child star who’s grown up to become obsessed with the character he played in the ‘80s, and proves to be Gru’s most formidable nemesis to date.dru-and-gruDespicable Me 3 is directed by Pierre Coffin and Kyle Balda and co-directed by Eric Guillon. It’s written by Cinco Paul & Ken Daurio and the animated film is produced by Illumination’s Chris Meledandri and Janet Healy, and executive produced by Chris Renaud.despicable-me-3-minionsAre you as excited for Summer now as I am? DESPICABLE ME 3 is in theaters June 30! Get the latest news about the film by following along on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Join in on the conversation at #DespicableMe3.

This is not a sponsored post. Images and clips are property of Illumination. All opinions are 100% my own.

 

Discovery Cube Orange County Presents The Very Eric Carle Exhibit Through 5/24

This is not a sponsored post. I was invited to attend a media event, as a guest of Discovery Cube, in order to write this post. Some images are property of Discovery Cube. All opinions are 100% my own. 

 

Discovery Cube Orange County invites families to step into the pages of Eric Carle’s colorful picture books by visiting The Very Eric Carle Exhibit.  Eric Carle’s classic “Very” series, all illustrated in his hand-painted tissue paper collage technique, introduces five special insects who take journeys of discovery. Each story is a testament to Eric Carle’s’ love of nature, his respect for the emotional lives of children, and his recurring themes of friendship creativity, and the power of imagination.the-very-busy-spiderEric Carle stories included in the exhibit are:

  • The Very Hungry Caterpillar – a story about hope. You, like the little caterpillar, will grow up, unfold your wings, and fly off into the future.
  • The Very Busy Spider -a story about work and how we need to work and finish our tasks despite our many distractions.
  • The Very Quiet Cricket – a story about love. Crickets and people alike go in search of a suitable mate.
  • The Very Lonely Firefly – a story about belonging. We all want to belong to a group, a family, and our own fellow creatures.
  • The Very Clumsy Click Beetle – a story about persistence. Each of us faces some obstacles in life, but we need to try and try again until we overcome the challenges.

the-very-clumsy-beetleInteractive exhibit activities include:

  • Create your own butterfly using light and color through shadow play
  • Test your dexterity, strength and flexibility as you step through a giant, web-like structure
  • Compose a night symphony
  • Spin your own web on a large weaving wall
  • Test your balance as you rummage across a pile of pebbles
  • Crawl through tall blades of grass 

you-are-a-beautiful-butterflyThe Very Eric Carle exhibit is designed for children 2 to 8 years of age, their families, and pre-school and school groups ages 2 to 8 years. Very Eric Carle: A Very Hungry, Quiet, Lonely, Clumsy, Busy Exhibit was co-organized by Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh and The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. The exhibit is included in the price of regular admission.be-youFor more information about the Very Eric Carle exhibit or to purchase tickets, go here.

About Discovery Cube
Discovery Cube inspires and educates young minds through engaging science-based programs and exhibits to create a meaningful impact on the communities they serve. Their mission is brought to life through the cornerstones of their four core initiatives, including: STEM Proficiency, Early Learning, Healthy Living and Environmental Stewardship. This exhibit represents their evolving commitment to expand STEM proficiency by keeping up with the trends, events and news that are capturing kids’ attention – and creating an entertaining way to approach education through a day of family bonding.

ROCK DOG in Theaters 2/24 + Enter to Win

ROCK DOG, the new Lionsgate animated film, follows Bodi the Tibetan Mastiff living on Snow Mountain as he journeys through a dream in a new city. He leaves his Tibetan village to pursue his dream of becoming a rock ‘n’ roll star. rockdog-posterThe all-star cast includes Lewis Black and Luke Wilson. ROCK DOG hits theaters February 24 and is sure to be a family favorite!
Check out the official trailer:

Rock-Dog-Bodi

You can also enter to win my giveaway for a Rock Dog prize package which includes:  a tambourine, kid’s beanie, temporary tattoos, and two (2) screening passes to see the film when it’s in theaters. To enter, leave a comment below telling me why you’re excited to see Rock Dog. I will close comments on 2/20/17 at 11:59 p.m. and choose one (1) winner via Random Number Generator. Winner will be emailed and mailed the package.

For more movie info, visit the official ROCK DOG site here. Follow Rock Dog on Facebook, and Twitter.

This is not a sponsored post. Images, logos and trailer are property of Lionsgate. All opinons are 100% my own. 

 

New TV Spot for Disney’s Beauty and the Beast #BeOurGuest

Get your tissues ready! Watch this brand new TV spot that aired during the Golden Globes, which includes a sneak peek of Emma Watson singing “Belle” from the Disney’s upcoming release of “Beauty and the Beast!new-beauty-and-the-beast-poster

Her voice is amazing and I am such a huge fan of her acting and I think she’s the most perfect “Belle”! beauty-and-the-beast.

I’m more exciting than ever for March 17th to get here, the date of the film’s release. Will you be in the theaters watching? We will!

Connect with Beauty and the Beast on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram too. You can also visit the film’s official website here.

This is not a sponsored post. Images are property of Disney. All opinions are 100% my own. 

 

Meet the New Characters Joining Cars 3

As if I wasn’t already excited about the upcoming release of Cars 3 in June 2017, some new characters were also announced, which will be joining Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson) in this all-new story that tests the heart of a champion in a high-tech world. The two new characters include an unconventional trainer Cruz Ramirez (Cristela Alonzo) and next-gen racer Jackson Storm (Armie Hammer).

Lightning McQueen is world champion—a modern-day racing legend who’s riding high with five Piston-Cup wins under his hood. Suddenly, he finds himself faced with a new generation of racers who threaten not only his dominance in the sport—but the confidence that got him there. Determined to get back to the pole position, the #95 must decide if his love for racing is enough to fuel the comeback of his life. Owen Wilson returns to the racetrack as the voice of the champion.

Cruz Ramirez (voiced by Cristela Alonzo) is a sunny-but-fierce unconventional trainer at the Rust-eze Racing Center. She expertly arms the team’s talented rookies with cutting-edge tools to tear up the track—but she nearly stalls when her longtime idol Lightning McQueen shows up. While she’d love to help him find his way back to the top, she knows the competition is faster than ever, and victory is all about speed—or is it? Cristela Alonzo (“The Angry Birds Movie”) was called on to help bring the character to life.

Cristela is full of optimism and a positive energy that I think really comes through in Cruz’s personality and of course, she’s a hilarious comedian, so that doesn’t hurt either.” Cars Director Brian Fee

Jackson Storm is fast, sleek and ready to race. A frontrunner in the next generation of racers, Storm’s quiet confidence and cocky demeanor are off-putting—but his unmatched speed threatens to redefine the sport. Trained on high-tech simulators that are programmed to perfect technique and maximize velocity, Jackson Storm is literally built to be unbeatable—and he knows it. Armie Hammer (“Birth of a Nation”) was tapped as the voice of Jackson Storm.

Armie brought a great combination of intensity and charm to the role of Jackson Storm. His charisma helped create a character you really love to hate.”

Cars 3 is directed by Brian Fee (storyboard artist “Cars,” “Cars 2“) and Produced by Kevin Reher (“A Bug’s Life,” “La Luna” short), and cruises into theaters on June 16th!

January Events at Pretend City Children’s Museum

2017 is here and Pretend City Children’s Museum is celebrating!  Kick off the New Year with some fun activities during the month of January.  january-art-resolution-monthCelebrate Art Resolution Month this month! Each week in their newly renovated art studio, a new form of art will be highlighted. Children can come experience new materials and new types of art in the PROCESS-based studio! pretend-city-art-studio

Here are some other fun events you’ll find at Pretend City in January:

  • Cuddle Up Day | January 6cuddle-up-day
  • Bubble Bath Day | January 8bubble-bath-day
  • Letter Writing Week | January 8 – January 14
  • Baby Steps through Pretend City | January 9
  • National Hat Day | January 15
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Day | January 16
  • National Popcorn Day | January 19national-popcorn-day
  • National Hugging Day | January 21
  • National Opposite Day | January 25
  • Lunar New Year Celebration – Year of the Rooster | January 28
  • National Puzzle Day | January 29
  • Family Autism Event | January 30pretend-city-family

For more information about the events at Pretend City Children’s Museum, go here

This is not a sponsored post. Images and logo are property of Pretend City. All opinions are 10% my own. 

 

American Girl Holiday Programming For the Entire Family

During the holiday season, one of my most favorite things to do with my daughter is to watch family-friendly holiday programming. This holiday season, American Girl has some new entertainment offerings that you won’t want to miss!
An American Girl Story—Maryellen 1955: Extraordinary Christmas
Beginning November 25, you can stream An American Girl Story—Maryellen 1955: Extraordinary Christmas exclusively on Amazon Prime Video. maryellen-coverThis heartwarming, holiday movie is based on American Girl’s previously launched BeForever character Maryellen Larkin. The special is set during Christmas in 1955 in Daytona Beach, Florida, where middle child Maryellen longs to stand out amidst the hustle and bustle of her big, busy family. A boisterous and artistic girl, Maryellen’s adventurous spirit is sometimes at odds with the era she’s living in: when conformity was valued above individuality. When Benji, a family friend afflicted with polio comes to stay with them and visit Daytona Beach’s hospital for care, Maryellen is inspired to help the polio patients have the best Christmas ever. With guidance and advice from Maryellen’s wise and sympathetic mother, Maryellen learns the key to helping others is through listening.
Here’s a preview:

An American Girl: Lea to the Rescue
Girls can spend a fun holiday night at home, watching An American Girl: Lea to the Rescue, American Girl’s first-ever action-adventure film, which aired November 23 on Disney Channel and is now available on Blu-Ray and DVD.lea-movie

In the thrilling sequel to the original book series, Lea must face her fears as she travels deep into the Brazilian rainforest to solve the mystery of her missing brother. In her quest to find him, she helps save endangered animals and must outwit ruthless animal poachers.
Here’s a preview:

An American Girl Story—Melody 1963: Love Has to Win
We recently attended a private event at The Grove LA to screen An American Girl Story—Melody 1963: Love has to Win. To read review click heremelody1The story centers around 10-year-old Melody, who is coming of age in Detroit in 1963. In the film, Melody’s eyes are opened to the racial inequality surrounding her, including the 1963 Birmingham Church Bombing. As a result, her belief in the “indivisible” promise of our country’s Pledge of Allegiance comes into question as she challenges her teacher on the validity of this given the horrific tragedy. After an emotional journey of self-reflection, her mother gives her the courage she needs by instilling in her that love brings out the best in everyone; reminding Melody that it’s important to “stand up for what’s right, even when it’s hard or scary.”
Here’s a preview: 

Have you watched any of these American Girl stories yet? It’s going to be an amazing holiday season with this great lineup of programs. Happy Holidays!

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