RSS Email

My Favorite Movies as a Kid

As a little kid I had about 75 VHS tapes in my room and I watched every single one of them hundreds of times. I’ve always loved movies and I love re watching all of the movies that I loved as a child. These are the movies that I always ask for on DVD when Christmas rolls around. Some of them are classics and some of them are just my favorites. But all of them are on Netflix and they’re all great picks for you and your kids to enjoy together. This is my list of my Top Ten Favorite Movies from My Childhood.

Classic Kids Movies on Netflix

An adorable but incredibly sad story about a flying baby elephant shrew. Baby Mine is one of the saddest lullabies ever written but it’s so beautiful. This movie is super weird though, those pink elephants still freak me out. Only 60 minutes though, great if your kids have short attention spans!

The Prince of Egypt
This is actually the biblical story of Moses. It’s a great way to introduce these kinds of stories to kids who may be having trouble understanding the complex story telling in the bible. However, there are some graphic scenes in this movie involving slavery and death so parents should use their  best judgement on whether it is appropriate for their kids.Favorite Classic Kids Movies on Netflix #StreamTeam

Treasure Planet
Great adventure tale, a journey of a young boy to find riches for his family and redeem his past mistakes. It also has excellent role models for girls and boys including the tough female captain of the ship and the fearless young man who is leading the expedition.

Lilo and Stitch
Everybody loves Stitch. He’s adorable and destructive but he loves and protects Lilo no matter what. This movie sparked a TV show and two sequels but the original is one of my favorite movies. The soundtrack is a hilarious compilation of Elvis tracks and beautiful Hawaiian music. It’s a must watch!

Phil Collins is one of my favorite musician. He went all out on this soundtrack and they are still some of my favorite songs. And it has talking elephants and gorillas. There is a rather dark ending though involving the antagonist falling to his death through some tangled vines but it’s still a great movie for kids. Do not watch Tarzan and Jane though, it’s terrible and you will feel disappointed.  If you must watch a sequel watch Tarzan 2, that ones okay.Favorite Classic Kids Movies on Netflix #StreamTeam

Kind of unknown but one of my favorite movies of all-time. The Muses are my favorite Disney characters and they help pull the whole story together. My sister and I both love this movie and I highly recommend it for all ages. As Shae put it, “I like it.” Shae Babiak everyone, such a way with words:P

FernGully: The Last Rainforest
This movie is secretly propaganda against the destruction of the environment but it’s still great and interesting and heartfelt. You follow a little fairy as she pulls a human into her world to show the effects that cutting down the forest has on those who live in it. This movie also has on of the best villain songs in any movie which is sung by Tim Curry. And the late Robin Williams plays a crazy bat so you know it’s going to be funny.

A forgotten princess since she isn’t a part of the Disney family. Anastasia however has strength and resilience and is an excellent role model. She is true to herself and wants nothing more than to find her family. As she and her friends travel from Russia to Paris they face trials but in front of them by the evil Rasputin and must work together to get to Anastasia’s grandmother. Rasputin is hilarious and so is Bartok, his adorable bat friend. I wish Bartok’s movie was on Netflix, it might be even better than Anastasia.

While it’s not the most accurate tale it is a great way to show the way Natives were treated by the settlers when they came to America. And the songs are beautiful and the animals are cute and the princess is strong and wise and fearless and I wish I was her. This is a great movie for anyone of any age. Also the sequel is pretty good so you’re cleared to watch that one too.

Hardcore and honorable, Mulan is a powerful warrior who dresses as a man to protect her aging father from war. She must work together with her unlikely friends to save China from the Huns. Plus this movie has “I’ll Make A Man Out of You” one of the greatest Disney songs ever written. Mulan kicks butt and doesn’t back down from any challenge. The sequel is good but the animation looks really weird so if you do watch it make sure you watch the weird snoopy faces they all make.


Robin Hood
It’s the story of Robin Hood but with animals, what’s not to love!

The Emperors New Groove
Such a weird movie but definitely one of David Spades best roles. Maybe his best role. He’s basically playing David Spade but he’s a llama. It’s a really weird movie.Favorite Classic Kids Movies on Netflix #StreamTeam
Chicken Run
Might be weirder than The Emperors New Groove. It’s the story of some chickens who try to learn how to fly from a flightless rooster. It was weird when I was a kid too. But it’s funny and the claymation is incredible. It’s just a silly movie to watch with your kids.

Smile Brilliant Teeth Whitening System

A few weeks ago I started the Smile Brilliant teeth whitening system and I’m so excited to see the results. I’ve tried whitening my teeth in the past but the results were never what I expected. I’ve done the strips and the gel that you add to the toothpaste but I’ve always been disappointed. They took weeks to show any change and never lasted very long after I stopped the process. Since I don’t smoke or drink coffee or soda, I expected my teeth to stay white for a good amount of time after using these products.

Smile Brilliant is a much more professional kind of whitening treatment. Instead of the one size fits all trays that you get at the drug store, Smile Brilliant will send you custom made trays that fit perfectly to your teeth. This guarantees that the whitening gel will coat the full exterior of your teeth to provide an even whitening. Their process is incredible; everything that you will need is sent to you in a kit. This includes the two different kinds of paste that you need to take the molds of your teeth as well as several syringes full of the whitening and desensitizing gels. The box is also full of instructions for each step of the process from taking the impressions to applying the whitener to cleaning and caring for your trays. The instruction sheets also include tips for the best ways to achieve the best results.

Smile Brilliant Teeth Whitening

Smile Brilliant is a lab quality process with custom fitted trays and professional quality whitening ingredients to ensure the best results without the high cost of visiting your dentist. My kit cost about $140 and should last months if not a year or so I can do maintenance whitening every couple months as needed.

  • Teeth Whitening Trays – 2 Custom-fitted whitening trays (upper and lower teeth)
  • Carrying Case – Compact case holds both your whitening trays
  • Impression material to make your own dental impressions (plus extra material included)
  • 3-Way, pre-paid postage – all postage between you and the lab is covered (2-way for international orders)
  • 1 set of custom dental models – created by our lab technicians from your impressions
  • Professional teeth whitening gel – Dentist-strength 22% Carbamide Peroxide in 3ml syringes.
  • 2 year teeth whitening tray replacement warranty
  • Detailed instructional brochure – Simple guide to creating your custom-fitted teeth whitening trays
  • 30 day satisfaction guarantee!

Here’s my update with about 8 days of use. It’s really quite simple to use. So simple that I wear them to work so I don’t have to skip a day due to a weird schedule or lots of things to do. I’m pleased with the progress. I purposely didn’t watch the changes each day because I didn’t think I’d be happy without a dramatic difference. In just a week’s time I do notice the brightening. I can’t wait to see the results after 3 weeks.Smile Brilliant Teeth Whitening

excuse the lighting, an overcast day versus sunny day in the shade makes for a big difference in great lighting.


Keep Your Kids Protected With #LifeLock

I am a LifeLock Ambassador and was compensated for this post but ALL opinions are my own!!

Two weeks ago our 17 year old daughter landed her very first job at a place that is near and dear to my heart, BWW (Buffalo Wild Wings).  I am extremely happy that Sabreena is now working but with work comes responsibility and she now has to be sure to keep her identity safe from people who may try to pray on her due to her age.

The first thing we needed to do was open a checking account for her so that she has an account for her paychecks to be direct deposited into.  With her checking account comes an ATM card and this will be her first checking account and ATM card so needless to say I am pretty nervous.  Sabreena sometimes tends to be scattered brained and I am worried her ATM card or checking account information may fall into the wrong persons hands. Thankfully LifeLock will keep Sabreena safe and protect while giving me the piece of mind that I need so that my OCD doesn’t kick into overdrive.  I know when I was 17 I never worried about keeping my identity safe and I am sure Sabreena isn’t either which is fine because that is my job as well as LifeLock’s for the time being.

Just remember identity thieves don’t just pray on older established people they pray on anyone who leaves their personal information out for the taking.  Teens and young adults need to try and remember this if possible and do everything in their power to keep themselves safe and secure.

If you have a young teen or recent college grad you may want to give them a gift that will keep on giving and that gift is a LifeLock membership.  If you enroll today you will receive a special promo offer for 30 DAYS FREE and 10% OFF your membership for the lifetime of your account. Click HERE or call 1-800-543-3562 and use the promo code ORG30 to redeem your discount offer and get protected today.

Trust me when I say this will be the best gift you ever gave.

For more awesome tips and offer be sure to follow LifeLock on Twitter and Facebook.


Mind Your Manners Because One Day You’ll Get Caught

This past weekend the family went to the beach for a last minute short getaway. Nothing extravagant but it was fun to get focus on us and have a good time together.

Sunday morning’s breakfast was going to be simple with a visit to the Fractured Prune. I had never heard of it but Sabreena mentioned really wanting to try them out.

We walked it and immediately noticed the large variety of flavor combinations. The kids couldn’t divert their eyes from the lists of glazes and toppings. I on the other had noticed a young man standing behind the counter staring Sabreena up and down as if she sporting neon lights. He proceeded to turn our back to us, lean over and whisper something into another teenager’s ear. He then looked up from what he was doing and eyed Sabreena up and down and giggled.

I stepped forward and asked the first gentleman if there was a problem. I startled him. He knew he was busted. I continued to ask if he had something else to say, something he wanted to share with the rest of us. He had nothing.

Sabreena looked at me confused, not knowing what was going on. Rob came over to find out what happened. I told them both, loudly, what had happened. I wanted him to feel that same awkward, uncomfortable feeling that I had felt when he was “making fun” of my daughter.

He was shaking in his shoes. He didn’t know how to react. He squirmed a little in his spot and lowered his eyes. I REALLY REALLY wanted to know what was so funny but I left it at that. I showed him his actions were rude and probably NOT the best way to greet customers.

If it weren’t for my own kids being so excited over a Reese’s Pieces doughnut we would’ve left.

Sabreena probably looked weird in her bright green sunglasses and lopsided mohawk; probably not the typically attire for customers on an early Sunday morning. BUT I still didn’t appreciate his behavior. I didn’t talk to management, there as really no point.

How Do You Know When Your Kids Are Ready?

Decisions sign in the skyHow do you know when your kids are ready to move on to what I call the “Real World”?  A world where we as parents aren’t there every day making sure that our kids are making smart rational decisions?

I am asking because Sabreena turned 17 today and I don’t feel like she is ready to leave for college next year and be on her own making her own decisions.  Maybe all parents feel this way about their kids but part of me wishes I didn’t.  I want to feel like Melinda and I have done a good job getting her ready to conquer the world on her own with little or no help from us.

Right now I feel like she is very dependent on Melinda and myself which I am ok with on some level but I told her she needs to start making decisions on her own and dealing with the consequences of her decisions.  Not that I am trying to set her up for failure but I want her to be able to handle herself when she does move onto college and not be totally stressed when the time comes for her to start making decisions.  I am sure she is going to be stressed at first but over time it should become second nature for her.  I feel like Sabreena is a very responsible person but I am still scared to death to let her out into the word on her own.  I know I can’t protect her forever from everything but part of me wishes I could.  I know making mistakes and bad decision is part of life and makes a person who they are but the thought of it is hard.

So I am hoping that over the next year she will become a little more independent so that when she does leave for college I won’t be a total wreck.  Let’s all keep our fingers crossed for my hearts sake.

I Disclose

You’re Not Fooling Anyone

I think we all know a man like this. He’s an older man who still believes that he is cool with the kids. Maybe he wears cargo shorts with a braided belt and sandals in the summer time. He might enjoy a hobby like bird watching or collecting novelty ties. Men like this are everywhere. He could be your teacher, your coach, your neighbor, maybe even your dad. Even though each of these traits is a little embarrassing on their own, they all pale in comparison to what lies on the top of this man’s head. Whether it is a ponytail, a patch of bald scalp that covers the entire center of the head, or even the dreaded Comb-Over, this man refuses to relinquish his outdated and offensive choice of hairstyle. He clings to it in the hopes of concealing the fact that he is getting older. They put so much time and effort into making their hair look perfectly terrible when in reality all of their problems could be solved with a set of clippers. There comes a time in every man’s life when he needs to just give up and shave.

bad comb overWho was the first man who thought that the ponytail was a good choice for hiding baldness? These men are so desperate to preserve their youth that they will grow their remaining hair incredibly long just so that they can pull it back and conceal the patches of shiny scalp on the back of their head. We all know it’s there. They aren’t actually hiding anything. They’re actually drawing more attention to the fact that they’re losing your hair. I don’t know a single man with a ponytail who isn’t balding. They also seem to think that the ponytail will draw away from the fact that their hairline is receding when in all truth it makes their bright and shiny forehead look twice its normal size. Basically, it makes you look like some kind of alien. It would be in their best interest and everyone else’s best interest if they just shaved their hair.

The same goes for guys who are trying to rock the Comb-Over. The Comb-Over is when you realize you are losing your hair in an expanding spot on the top, front or back of your head and you decide that the best course of action is to push the thin, long and wispy hairs on either side of your bald patch over the scalp in an attempt to hide it from view. How can they not realize that we still see they’re bald? A Comb-Over doesn’t hide anything. The hair on their head isn’t long or thick enough to cover that glistening dome. Just shave it. Men with shaved and bald heads are way manlier than men who refuse to accept the chunks of scalp that are slowly emerging and try to cover up by over-styling their remaining tufts of hair. It’s never just a simple bald patch with these men. They actually work to conceal their cranial dysfunction. They tease out the sides of their hair to make it look like they have more hair than they really do. All that does is create a wreath-like effect which gives them massive ears and oddly narrow heads. Some men oil down their hair. They slick it back to better hide their bald spots, putting emphasis on their receding hair line. There are guys who can’t make the commitment of a full shave so they get a Caesar instead. That’s when you cut your hair very short and slowly begin pushing your hairline further up your head as more of your hair vanishes. All of these looks are horrible and all of these poor men just need to realize what a horrible mistake they are making.

This is what I ask; when you see the man in your life with this horrible hairdo, start leaving him little messages of encouragement to shave his head. Maybe you should talk about your favorite bald actors. Mention how manly and tough and cool Jason Statham, Vin Diesel and Bruce Willis are. Talk about their awesome haircuts; how their shiny heads make them even more awesome as action heroes. What about the oh-so-manly-and-tough Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson? He beats up other men for a living; how manly is that? Maybe one day these men will realize that bald can be beautiful. Then we can live in the incredible world of fantastic contrast, where men are either gloriously trussed or heroically bald. That’s a world that I want to see.

Just Give Up and Shave It
A Plea to the Masses
Sabreena Babiak
Author Note
This paper was prepared for Men’s Health Magazine as a plea to all men who continue to sport their horrendous haircuts in a desperate attempt at looking cool.

Our Place, a place for teens App review

our place networkOur Place is an app created by Louise Palanker that gives tweens and teens a place to talk and post about issues in their lives that they may be uncomfortable discussing with parents or even friends. I’ve spent the last few weeks browsing and exploring all of the interesting chat rooms that the app has to offer. I’ve seen some interesting and helpful discussions and had some great conversations with people while using Our Place.

Our Place is a Social and Support and Creativity Network for Teens and Tweens, featuring expert advice from Teen Specialist, Louise Palanker

Our Place is designed to encourage and reward Cyber Kindness, cooperation, and compassion.

At Our Place, teens are talking about: life, love, boys, girls, dating, flirting, friends, bullies, parents, school, family, gay issues, puberty, sex, fears, depression, dramas and dreams. The more advice you give and receive, the more awesome you will feel about yourself and your place in the world.

The layout of the app is very easy to navigate. I really like that the “Courtyard” is broken down into so many sections. It gives you the ability to find what kind of topics you want to discuss, whether they are serious and personal or more of a fun chat. The advice section is always crawling with users who are ready and willing to talk about issues that you may have. It’s divided into Friends/Peers/Bullies, Dating/Romance/Crushes, Family, Gay/Lesbian/Bi, and more. This allows you to put your question in a section where people are comfortable reading about and responding to those types of issues. You might even find someone with a problem similar to your own. Everyone on the app is incredibly helpful and respectful. Anyone who is found being rude or inappropriate is stopped by moderators before it gets out of hand. The moderators do a great job of maintaining civil conversation on Our Place.
our place app screenshot
Advice isn’t all that the app is good for though. The chat and creativity sections are full of activity and conversation amongst users. Teens can post stories and poetry that they have written and share it with others. This way, aspiring writers can get feedback and new ideas for their writing. It’s a great supportive community with lots of kids getting the advice and guidance that they need.

There are just a few things that bothered me while using the app. I commented on a thread but lost it when I came back a few days later to check for any updates. There doesn’t seem to be any method of marking the threads that you want to be updated on. Also, personal photos aren’t an option for your profile picture. I’m sure they don’t allow them for privacy reasons but when multiple users pick the same picture of Justin Beiber as their icon and then comment on the same thread, it can get pretty confusing. Other than that though, I really enjoy the app will continue using it.

Our Place is a FREE app available on the iTunes platform.

I Think She Eats Them

How long have you had your current set of earbuds?  Yes the kind of earbuds you use when you listen to music on the iPod, iPhone or where ever you use them.  For me I have had mine for years and typically the only reason I get a new pair of earbuds is if I get a new phone and it comes with a new pair.

Sabreena (our oldest) on the other hand goes through a pair of earbuds like every other month.  I know she listens to music non-stop on her iPhone and I mean non-stop but I am not sure how she goes through so many earbuds. 

Somehow Sunday night we got on the subject because I saw she was using my Apple earbuds so when I asked her why she was using mine she told me hers broke.  My first question to Sabreena was why she was using mine that she didn’t even ask to use.  She knows that she breaks every single pair of earbuds she uses so why the heck would she use mine because she knows how irritated I will be if she breaks them so after that conversation she decided to go and shake down Shaun and Shae.  She asked Shaun if he had an extra pair and when he said no she resorted to asking Shae who is only five if she had a pair, LOL.  She is so hooked on earbuds she was begging her little brother and sister for a pair. HAHA.  What really made me laugh is when I heard Shaun ask Sabreena why she breaks so many pairs of earbuds.  He is only nine and knows she is a disaster, LOL.

Sabreena typically get 2-3 sets at a time because she knows she is either going to lose them or break them.  About six months ago Melinda took Sabreena to BestBuy and she bought three pair of $5 earbuds and she broke every single pair of them.  When I asked her what the heck she is doing to them she says “Nothing they are just cheap”.  That may be the case for some but I know for a fact she has had many sets of earbuds that cost between $30-$40 so her cheap argument isn’t 100% true.  Maybe she eats them or maybe she is a crime fighter by night and uses her earbuds to restrain criminals because I can’t for the life of me figure out why the hell she has blown through so many pairs over the years.

If you know of any earbuds that may be Sabreena proof let me know because I would be willing to check them out because she has probably been through 20-30 pairs.  I told her she needs to get a job being an earbud product tester because if they could withstand her abuse they could withstand anything, LOL.

I Disclose

I Feel Like A Manager

Sabreena is 16 years old and a junior in high school and is oh so close to college which is so hard to believe. 

The problem I am having and I am sure a lot of parents have with high school kids is getting them to look past the current year and look into the future.  I am not saying I want Sabreena to look so far into the future that she doesn’t enjoy now but with college right around the corner there are a lot of things that she needs to do now for college in two years. 

I feel like I am constantly reminding her about staying on top of her school work because she has a heavy work load this year with two college level courses (English and History) in addition to the rest of her honors classes which I would love to see her get all A’s in.  She also needs to start looking over study materials for the SAT so that she can take it at least once if not twice this school year.  She also needs to start thinking about what college she may want to attend so that she can review their admissions requirements so that she can be sure she has everything she needs to meet those requirements.  Just reading all of this makes my head hurt because she is under a lot of pressure at the age of 16 which sucks and that is why I am trying to help/manage her the best I can.  I started looking over different SAT test dates yesterday and what study materials she will need so that is one less thing she needs to worry about. 

It’s tough to be a kids these days and I hope she understands that I only want to best for her.  When I was a senior in high school I took the SAT once and bombed it and I wasn’t even planning on going to college.  I can remember during the last three months of my senior year my dad telling me I was going to college and not community college so I then needed to scramble to find a school that would accept me on such short notice.  I don’t want Sabreena to have to go through the same thing.  I want her to pick the college she wants to go to because it’s a good fit for her not because it’s the last minute and that is the only college available.  Not that my parents didn’t care they just don’t think like I do and that is why I am so involved in Sabreena’s studies.

Like I said I hope she knows I am doing this to help her and not to be a pain in the ass.  I know how I felt when I was a senior and needed to find a college with no assistance and I don’t want Sabreena to have to deal with the same thing. I am trying to make this whole process as painless as possible.  Not sure how I am doing so far but like I said I am trying.

I Disclose

Emergency Preparedness with The Hunt

Today my family and I completed the challenges for Day 8 of‘s, The Hunt. The challenges today focused on Disaster Response and Relief and was one of the simplest and most important days in the campaign. Many people are not prepared for a disaster and would be stuck without the most basic supplies should one occur. Today, we made sure we were prepared.

The first challenge was to check all of the smoke detectors in our house and make sure they were fully functional. Our dogs did not appreciate this at all.

The next two challenge was to identify the top natural disaster in our area and set up a disaster preparedness plan and kit. The most common risk in our community is a Nor’easter, a violent storm which occurs along the north east coast that greatly represents a hurricane. They mostly happen in the winter but have come at other times of the year and cause floods and power outages all over Delaware. We collected all of the things that we would need and figured out what we would do and where we would go if our power went out or if the area around started to flood.

emergency preparednessWe searched for the items listed on and found that we had most of the items somewhere in our house. We just had to collect them into one space so they were accessible in an emergency. Then we came up with our plan. If the power went out, we have several flashlights with batteries strategically placed all over the house. We also have a large box of candles,holders and lighters. We were prepared for the power to be out for a short time. We also have several family members nearby who we could visit if there was a prolonged power outage., the nation’s largest organization for teens and social change, has partnered with Lenovo, the world’s second largest PC maker who helped found the campaign last year, and Bing, the search engine from Microsoft, to launch “The Hunt: 11 Days of Doing.” I have been compensated by Mom Bloggers Club to share this information with you.