Saturday

7 Back-to-School Gadgets for Teachers



Gadgets make every one's lives a little easier it seems. My friends who are teachers talk about all the coolio gadgets they'd love to have in their classrooms, every weekend when we have coffee.

My mom was a kindergarten teacher for ever it seemed. In the 60's, 70's, and 80's. Pre-technology. Back in the good old mimeograph days. Ahhhh, remember the smell of those? She didn't have anything more technologically advanced than a stapler.

Whether you're a first-year teacher or classroom veteran, incorporate some fresh tools into your classroom to make learning efficient and even more fun. Your students will be excited to learn new materials with the help of these items, especially since we live in a digital generation and kids thrive upon it. (You can always ask your students to be your IT department.) Incorporating new technology will make for fun lesson plans and activities, and hopefully make your life a little easier.

Here are seven new items on the market that are a fit for educators:

Slide Calculator (Staples, $2.99)

Wireless Presenter with Laser Pointer (Staples, $99.49)

Portable MP3/CD Player (Sears, $47.99)

Plug Power (Quirky, $4.99)

Insta Mini Camera (Sears, $92.08)

Despicable Me Flash Drive 16 MG (Sears, $15.97)

What are some of your favorite classroom tech gadgets? We'd love to know so we can share your ideas on our Mommy's Wish List Facebook page!


Email readers, click here to see the roundup.

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Friday

Nice Work If You Can Get It kicks off national tour in Dallas.



Ever been to a broadway show where you knew the words to just about every song, but had no idea that they all came from one musical? That just happened to me last night.

This week, Gershwin's Nice Work If You Can Get It, the classic musical, opened in Dallas as a part of the Dallas Summer Musical series. Dallas Summer Musicals brings traveling companies of Broadway Shows to Dallas, as a part of a national tour. Nice Work If You Can Get It is kicking off it's national tour in Dallas. You can see some great behind-the-scenes video at that link.

This is easily the funniest musical I have ever seen. It takes place during Prohibition, so it's chock full of gangsters, bootleggers, flappers, prohibitionists and playboys. It features songs that I know you know, like "Someone to Watch Over Me",  "Let's Call The Whole Thing Off", and I've Got a Crush on You. Even the political jokes from the 20s that were in the show still held true in 2014, much to the delight of the audience. Republicans and Democrats alike were bashed.

The show-stealer though, I thought, was "I'm Delishious" in which Eileen (played by actress Rachael Scarr), "the world's foremost authority on modern dance" or some such hilariously exaggerated lofty title, sings from the bathtub, while gazing at herself in a series of handheld mirrors. When suddenly a gaggle of bubble-clad bathing beauties and men in pink tights emerge from the bathtub to leap and frolic thru the bathroom. I died laughing when they popped up out of nowhere from the bathtub in which Eileen was sitting, and proceeded to wrap her in the world's largest pink towel. She is one of the most hysterical characters I've seen on stage.



This is an unlikely love story though, in case you are unfamiliar with the plot, between a rich playboy, Jimmy, about to marry his fourth wife, and a tomboy bootlegger, Billie, who thinks he's just a mark. At first. There are so many great jokes, fantastic word-play, and of course classic memorable songs in this show. I was really sad when it was over.

Tickets for Nice Work If You Can Get It
Dallas Readers: Nice Work If You Can Get It is playing at the Music Hall in Fair Park thru September 14th. You can get tickets for Nice Work If You Can Get It. Tickets range from $15 to $80 depending on where you choose to sit. I've seen many, many performances at the Music Hall in Fair Park, and even the balcony is a good seat. I'd recommend this show for tweens on up – it is light-hearted, very funny, but has a few adult themes (hello flappers in stockings).

National Readers: The tour goes next to Fort Worth, then Salt Lake City, St. Louis, St. Paul, Dayton, and many other cities thru next March. Find your city and get tickets for Nice Work If You Can Get It here.



I hope you enjoy Nice Work If You Can Get It as much as I did. I'm looking forward to the rest of the Dallas Summer Musicals season!

Mommy's Wish List Disclosure: I am honored to have been a guest of Dallas Summer Musicals at the opening night of this show, so that I would be able to tell you all about it.
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Tuesday

14 After School Snacks {That Look Like Little Creatures}





After school snacks are a huge struggle. What I've figured out this this: the cuter the snacks are, the better chance I have of Luka eating them. What little boy wouldn't want to eat food that looks like bugs and other tiny creatures?

These ideas use most things that you already probably have on-hand in your kitchen, like hot dogs, raisins, carrots, and peanut butter. Have fun with your kiddos making and eating these creatures. You can find more fun ideas like these on my Pinterest Board called Kids Eat This.

I wanted to make a collection of easy ideas to refer to for the school year, which started last week. Easy things. Cute things. Things that Luka might actually eat after school.

This Collection of After School Snacks That Look Like Little Creatures was made using Foodie.com, which is a unique recipe collecting platform, kind of like Pinterest. They are sponsoring this post and this collection that I'm sharing with you. You can sign up for Foodie.com and follow me as I build interesting recipe collections. I'll follow you back if you do!

Check out After School Snacks {That Look like Little Animals}
by Lea Ann Stundins at Foodie.com


This collection of 14 little creature after school snacks ideas includes:
Cheese Wedge Mouse: A fun new way to eat your Happy Cow cheese wedges.

Creepy Corndog Centipedes: Add legs to your mini corn dogs and watch 'em walk off the plate.

Garden Octopus: A veggie and dip combo that will get lots of giggles.

Apple and Celery Tasty Bugs: Turn peanut butter celery into bugs and snails.

Swimming Fishies: Sandwich snack time has never gone so swimmingly.

Green-eyed Kitty Sandwich: Meow! This cat's where it's at.

Clementine Chicks: Peel and Peep!

Fruit & Cheese Butterfly: Even little fingers can fill these wings.

Crabby Crabwich: Cutest croissant sandwich ever made.

Penguin Appetizers: What's black and white and delicious after school?

Hotdog Caterpillar: Turn a hot dog into a bug? Absolutely.

Chickie Eggs: The cutest hard-boiled egg your kids will ever eat.

Cheese Mice: A few simple ingredients and you'll have a cute little mouse in your house.

Ladybug Tomatoes: Cherry tomatoes make perfect little ladies.

About Foodie
I hope you have fun making school night dinners with your kids, with one of these interesting recipes. If you've got a neato recipe that your kids love, please leave a link in the comments, so we can all share! Download the Foodie app here and you can find lots of interesting recipes collected by bloggers like me, and the Foodie editors!



Subscribe to Mommy's Wish List by email for other unusual recipes, tips on strategic shopping, creative parenting, being artsy, and other important things like making a lovely dinner when you secretly hate cooking.

Mommy's Wish List Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Foodie.com via Mode Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Foodie.com.

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Sunday

Our Top 5 Favorite Cheese Boards



If you've been following along with #indefinitecheeseboards on Instagram, my friends and I do a cheeseboard every Monday night. We are the Council of Indefinite Cheeseboards. At that link you can see some of the cheese boards from restaurants around town, in case you are also cheese board lovers like we are, and want to see what "IN" on cheeseboards these days. It's named "Indefinite" because Elysa set up a calendar invite for every Monday from now until eternity. They're that good.

We've been to a whole lot of places in Dallas trying to discern what exactly should be on the perfect cheeseboard. We've seen everything from quail eggs to pickled carrots. And lots and lots of cheese.



Cheeseboards are the new "IT" appetizer.
In case you haven't noticed it yet, let me point out that every restaurant I go to seems to have a cheeseboard on the menu now. You can add some pizzazz to your next party at home with a fun cheese board. This appetizer idea would be great for many occasions such as house parties, BBQs and picnics, or even just a girls night in.

Our Indefinite Cheeseboard Council will be having a girls night in soon, and an unbelievable Brisket Cheesecake will be the main attraction. I KNOW! Brisket. And cheesecake. Together.

What Makes a Good Cheeseboard
Cheese of course. Three is a good number. Have a creamy one like a triple cream brie, a hard one like a manchego, and a wild card like a bleu cheese.

Fruit is an excellent companion to cheese. Slice an apple, add dried apricots and cranberries. Strawberries or raspberries. Even fig jam is great with cheese.

Veggies like carrot sticks, sliced cucumbers, sun-dried tomatoes, olives, and those cute little pickles called cornichons are favorites of ours. Heck, pickled vegetables of any kind are delicious with a cheeseboard.

Crackers, tiny toast, fried bread...you need something to pair with your cheese. And how many times do we fuss about the cheese/cracker ratio? Almost every time. It rarely works out just perfect.

Little extras like a dollop of grainy French mustard or tiny pickled quail eggs, even some charcuterie like prosciutto, pepperoni or some such fancy meat with make your cheeseboard a stunner.

And please don't forget the wine.

The perfect Cheeseboard Starts With the Perfect Board
What we think is that the perfect cheeseboard should start with the perfect board first, right? Here's a few lovely ones we've discovered. I would secretly like to have a slice-of-tree cheeseboard as my own personal cheeseboard, but am making do with this one until I can hire a Boy Scout group to make me one.



Consider adding a cheese board to your gift list during the holidays, either for yourself or for the cheese connoisseur in your life. Viva les fromages!

Hip Vintage Piggy Cheese Board, $50.76 - Oink oink! This little piggy awaits your next cheese-tasting party. It's made from marble and granite, so the heavy dish is perfect for outdoor parties and won't flip over from any wind interference. No supplies included here, but this board is a novelty!

Gourmet Wine & Cheese Board, $49.50 - If you're looking for a package that includes the combo of wine and cheese (and the cheese board of course) look no further. We found a delicious assortment of savory edibles in addition to an attractive board and cheese knife.

Pear-Shaped Cheese Board, $44.95 - This swivel-style board in the shape of a pear comes with two knives, one cheese fork and a wine stopper (that'll come in handy!).

Dallas Cowboys Circo Cheese Board, $32.49 - Root for your hometown football team with a cheese board dedicated to them. Obviously you'll need some BLEU Cheese on this one. The Dallas Cowboys board will make a great addition to your watching parties this fall. The board is compact and made with eco-friendly rubberwood. Four utensils are included.

Picnic Time Mariner Cheese Board, $30 - Land ho! Here's an excuse to plan a fun sailor-themed party. The four utensils included can be stored within the board, and you can spin it like a Lazy Susan.



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