The Kitchen at Sandy Oaks Olive Orchard

About two weeks ago we went to Sandy Oaks Olive Orchard. It is in Elmendorf which is just south of San Antonio.

On Saturdays they have a free tour which I would have liked to do but we did not go on a Saturday.

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As you walk into the building you see the gift shop in front of you and the dining area off to the left. The dining area is small with only a few tables. There actually wasn’t an available table but they brought another one out for us.

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We started off with a starter of bread and a couple of olive dips/toppings.

Starting from the top we have: Olive Oil, Olives, Olive Butter, Olive Pesto, Olive Leaf Jelly, and Olive Tapenade

Starting from the top we have:
Olive Oil, Olives, Olive Butter, Olive Pesto, Olive Jelly, and Olive Tapenade

Connor’s favorite was the olive leaf jelly and JT liked both the olive leaf jelly and the olive oil and possibly the olive butter. I also liked the olive leaf jelly. It had just a slight sweetness to it and it was really surprisingly quite good. I really didn’t like the olive tapenade but the olive pesto was not bad at all. I liked that one. The olive oil was fine; it tasted the way olive oil should and the olive butter basically tasted like olive oil as well.

For our meal the boys had the Margherita Pizza and Connor also had a cup of tomato basil soup. I had the Olive Pesto Chicken Sandwich.

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The pizza looked good and the boys liked. They also really liked the soup. JT ended up eating some as well. The Olive Pesto Chicken Sandwich was delicious. I did not expect it to be as good as it was. I don’t order chicken sandwiches very often and when I have they’ve been fine but this was the best chicken sandwich I have ever had. The sandwich was flavorful and the chicken was moist and tender. I really loved it and highly recommend it. I would definitely order that sandwich again.

If you’re in San Antonio and feel like taking a short drive you should go try The Kitchen at Sandy Oaks out and let me know what you think.

Sorcerer Mickey Invitations

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Last month JT had a Sorcerer Mickey birthday party and I would like to share how we made the invitations.

I wanted the background of the invitation to be a night sky filled with stars. We went to Micheal’s and I initially was hoping they would have paper with a night sky design but they didn’t. Instead we bought blue paper, white glitter glue (and gold and silver), and some tiny stars. I also wanted to get some old fashioned looking paper and they didn’t really have that either so I got the closest paper I could find.

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The first thing we did was cut the blue paper in half and the cream colored paper in quarters. Connor had the idea of doing a spell scroll so we cut the quarters to kind of resemble a scroll shape. Once those were cut out I glued the scroll shape to the blue paper and also glued on a Sorcerer Mickey. Once everything was in place I used the white glitter glue to dot stars all over the remaining blue space.

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I decided since this was a party invitation we would write a summoning spell on it. I made up the spell and then translated it into Latin. The only word that wasn’t Latin was summonus. The boys just liked that word. I wanted to make everything look sparkly and magical so I wrote the spell out in a grey sharpie and then traced over it with a metallic gold gel pen.

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Once I had all the information in place I had some leftover space at the bottom of the scroll so I addded in alternating stars and crescent moons in the gold and silver glitter glue. I also purchased red envelopes and decorated those as well. On the front of the envelope I glued on another Sorcerer Mickey picture and then used the gold and silver glitter glue to make swirls of magic that went across the envelope and onto the back. Where the magic swirls ended on the back I wrote “Let the Magic Begin!” and ended it with a Mickey head.

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So there you have the completed Sorcerer Mickey birthday party invitation. They are fairly simple to make and we were really happy with the way they turned out.

Trying Out Playmation by Disney

On Sunday morning we headed out to the Disney Store so the boys could participate in a demo (orientation) of Playmation. When it was time for the orientation to start we were greeted by two members of the Avengers Labs team and the boys were given their mission briefing packets.

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Once they had their packets we were told that Tony Stark and Bruce Banner had created Repulsor Gear in order to recruit others to fight alongside the Avengers. Once the boys introduced themselves to Jarvis and got the Repulsor Gear fitted on them they were taught a few of the moves.

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Then we were shown the Power Activators and the boys started their training with Captain America.

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Once they were done training with the Captain they went up against Iron Skull. Once Iron Skull was defeated the Avengers Labs team member tried to contact Jarvis but instead we got Ultron and the boys had to go defeat a few waves of Ultron bots.

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At the end of the orientation the boys got Avengers lanyards, Avengers cards, and an ID card. Once we got in the car the boys opened the briefing packet and they got an Avengers Playmation comic book.

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The boys thought it was fun and are super excited for Playmation to come out on October 4th. Has anyone else gone to a Playmation demo at the Disney Store?

Minions Movie Review

We went to an advanced screening of Minions on Tuesday. The movie is basically a prequel to Despicable Me. We see where the Minions came from and follow along with Kevin, Stuart, and Bob as they attempt to find a boss for the tribe. They travel to Orlando to attend Villain-Con and meet Scarlett Overkill. She promises them they can all work for her as long as they steal the Queen’s crown for her.

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So, did I like the movie? Yes, I did but I didn’t love it. I think that Despicable Me was a much better movie. The movie was cute at times and there were definitely some funny parts but there was also a lot of slap stick and I personally am just not a fan of slap stick comedy. What I did love was the ending. I thought the ending was really cute and I loved it. That was my favorite part.

The boys liked the movie but didn’t really have much to say about it.

JT Says:

“First off I liked it and second the funny part was the giant…the giant…the giant! Giant Kevin.”

Connor Says:

“I liked it. My favorite part was the beginning when they told us how the Minions had been around longer then humans. I forgot what the funniest part was. It was kind of funny when Kevin was a giant and the Minions speak a mixture of Spanish and other stuff.”

Minions comes out in theaters tomorrow, July 10th. Let us know what you think of it.

Happy Tails

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Two weeks ago we visited one of the San Antonio library branches and saw a presentation by Happy Tails. I really loved the presentation. It was entertaining and educational.

There were two presenters and we were told they were taking us on a mini tour of Africa so we would be seeing five African animals. The first animal to come out was an African Porcupine named Hasani. Hasani is African for handsome. Hasani was walked back and forth and since the kids were all sitting on the floor I couldn’t get a picture of him.

The next animal to come out was an adorable hedgehog who I think was named Rascal followed by an African Spurred Tortoise named Tiny.

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Next to come out was a ball python whose name I do not recall.

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The last animal was a Ring Tailed Lemur. The Lemur was a lot of fun.

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I was really amazed at what a great presentation this was. The presenters were able to keep it really entertaining and they packed in a lot of information about each animal. At the end they brought out the Hasani the porcupine and the python to pet and take pictures with.

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Was anyone else able to catch a Happy Tails presentation? What was your favorite animal?

What’s Your Flavor?- San Antonio

I’m continuing on with San Antonio restaurants today. I found What’s Your Flavor? on Groupon and thought it sounded interesting. It’s not new. I just checked their Facebook page and apparently they’ve been open since 2012. It was completely new to us though.

What’s Your Flavor? is in a shopping center off 410 and Summit Parkway. The inside is small but there are also a few tables outside. The inside is also very bright and colorful. There are lime green picnic tables as well as some regular round tables I believe and on each table there is some sort of toy or activity for kids.

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Their lunch menu consists mainly of sandwiches and hot dogs but they also have salads and Ramen soup. Besides their lunch items they also serve snacks, ice cream, and shaved ice. We actually ended up ordering 3 kid’s meal hot dogs. The regular hot dog combos come with two hot dogs and I only wanted one so they let me get a kid’s meal. Both the regular combos and the kid’s meals come with a fruit cup and a drink.

Hot Dog

Hot Dog

The fruit cup that day was cantaloupe and strawberries.

The fruit cup that day was cantaloupe and strawberries.

We also ordered ice cream. The boys had Waffle Bowl Sundaes and I had a Tropical Parfait.

The sundaes include two scoops of ice cream. Connor had mango for one; I don't remember the other. He chose Oreos and rainbow sprinkles for his topping.

The sundaes include two scoops of ice cream. Connor had mango for one; I don’t remember the other. He chose Oreos and rainbow sprinkles for his topping.

JT's sundae was rainbow on the bottom with chocolate on the top and rainbow sprinkles.

JT’s sundae was rainbow on the bottom with chocolate on the top and rainbow sprinkles.

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My tropical parfait had vanilla ice cream with pineapple, coconut, and banana.

My tropical parfait had vanilla ice cream with pineapple, coconut, and banana.

Overall the hot dogs here were fine, just like any other hot dogs I would say. We did just get regular hot dogs though and they do offer several different options. The star of our meal was definitely the ice cream and there are so many combinations to choose from. What I really liked about What’s Your Flavor? is that it was bright, colorful, very kid friendly and affordable as well.

Axel & Theo: My Dog is the Emperor of a Faraway Galaxy

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*Disclosure: I was provided with a free copy of Axel & Theo: My Dog is the Emperor of a Faraway Galaxy to review. All opinions are our own honest opinions.*

Welcome to my stop on the Axel & Theo Blog Tour! The tour coordinated by Mother Daughter Book Reviews is for the lower middle grade book Axel & Theo: My Dog is The Emperor of a Faraway Galaxy by Amberly Kristen Clowe. This one is a great choice for reluctant readers!

Keep reading for more information about the book, our reviews, information about the author, and a giveaway. Also, make sure to check out the tour schedule and take a look at what some of the other bloggers had to say.

Axel and Theo - Blog Tour Button
 

About the Book

Title: Axel & Theo: My Dog is the Emperor of a Faraway Galaxy | Author: Amberly Kristen Clowe | Publication Date: November 15, 2014 | Publisher: Smooth Sailing Press | Pages: 44 | Recommended Ages: 6to 10

Axel and Theo: My Dog is the Emperor of a Faraway Galaxy
Summary: Theodore Howard wants a white flag. The kind of white flag that will show Riverwood Elementary’s biggest bully, Theo’s given up on ever surviving the fourth grade, and achieving his dream of becoming a real-life astronaut. But, Theo’s seemingly pathetic future gets a glimmer of hope in the form of a very talkative weenie dog named Axel. Theo learns that his best friend on four legs, is actually an alien from the planet Doglin, and just when he begins warming up to the idea of having an alien for a best friend, Axel is kidnapped by two cats from the planet Catlat. Theo chases after Axel and his kidnappers, embarking on an adventure he could have never imagined.

Amazon * Goodreads

 

Book Preview


 

My Review:

What first caught my attention about this book was the title; particularly the My Dog is the Emperor of a Faraway Galaxy part. It just sounded like it would be such a fun read and it is.

As you read Axel & Theo you are transported on an adventure with Theo and his dog Axel. Right from the start you find out that Axel is not your ordinary dog. Not only can he talk but he’s also an Alien from the planet Doglin. The book is very imaginative and I have to say that my favorite parts were hearing all about Doglin. Amberly Kristen Clowe’s descriptions are so much fun and make you want to jump right in with Axel and Theo.

Axel & Theo is such an easy and fast paced read that I think it would really work well for a wide range of ages.

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Connor Says:

I liked it. I like the pictures. It’s weird that the cats were after the dogs because usually dogs chase cats. It’s also weird that the cats teamed up with the rats. On Doglin I like that the grass is like a trampoline and everything is different. I like Axel and Theo. King Barfin is weird and Walter was a scaredy cat. I would read the next book.

JT Says:

JT hasn’t finished reading the book but he wanted to do the review too. So far he’s said that it’s good and he loves Axel.

I knew JT would probably really like this book because he loves dogs. I’ll add more to his review once he finishes the book.
 

About the Author: Amberly Kristen Clowe

Krissy-CloweAn avid story writer since elementary school, Amberly Kristen (Krissy) Clowe truly discovered her passion for writing after enrolling in a college, children’s literature class, where they read and analyzed children’s books. After completing her BA in early childhood education she began her teaching career.
“After my first year of teaching second grade, I had so many ideas swirling around in my head, I had to write. I might have gone crazy if I didn’t!” Clowe tells.
Axel & Theo is the first chapter book series written by Clowe, though she already has two other children’s picture books in print, and another due for publication in 2015. Today, her children provide the inspiration to her many stories, along with everything else she loves in life.

Website | Facebook | Goodreads

 

Axel & Theo Blog Tour Schedule

June 22

Mother Daughter Book Reviews (Launch & Author Interview)

Lian’s Summer of Fun Blog (Review)

Enter Here Canada (Excerpt)

June 23

Hide-n-(Sensory)-Seeking (Review)

Cherry Mischievous (Excerpt)

June 24

Rockin’ Book Reviews (Review)

The Blended Blog (Review)

June 25

View From the Birdhouse (Review)

Tots & Tales Reviews (Review)

June 26

2ReadBook (Review)

Where Connor and JT Go (Review)

June 27

Eloquent Articulation (Review)

We Are The DinoFamily (Review)

Lisa’s Research and Reviews (Excerpt)

June 28

Stitch Says (Review & Author Interview)

Heart of a Philanthropist (Review)

 

* Blog Tour Giveaway *

Prize: One winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card or $25 PayPal cash prize, winner’s choice
Giveaway ends: July 5, 11:59 pm, 2015
Open to: Internationally
How to enter: Please enter using the Rafflecopter widget below.
Terms and Conditions: NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW. A winner will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget and will be contacted by email within 48 hours after the giveaway ends. The winner will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner does not respond within 72 hours, a new draw will take place for a new winner. Odds of winning will vary depending on the number of eligible entries received. This contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. This giveaway is sponsored by the publisher, SmoothSailing Press and is hosted and managed by Renee from Mother Daughter Book Reviews. If you have any additional questions – feel free to send and email to Renee(at)MotherDaughterBookReviews(dot)com.
**Rafflecopter Giveaway**

Thanks for stopping by!