Five Products My Family is Enjoying During Summer Vacation

My kiddos are on day 13 of summer vacation. Like most, we have our good days and our bad days. In between camps, swim teams, and play dates, we are taking advantage of five fun products I recently discovered.

#1: Dunk Hat Game


If you like to blow off some steam, have a good laugh, and cool off on a hot summer day, this game is for you. I found this little gem in the summer section at Target. I had never heard of the Dunk Hat game, but thought I would take a chance on it. Good gravy this game was a blast!

The game kicks off with one player putting on a ridiculous looking dunk tank hat with built-in goggles and two targets. The person wearing the hat will look like a deranged welder, but that is part of the fun.  Another player then fills up the water tank on top of the person’s head  (I recommend warm tap water vs. cold hose water). All other players line up and take turns throwing the three very soft foam balls at the targets on the dunk tank hat. If the player hits one of the targets with the ball the water splashes on the person wearing the crazy dunk tank hat. This is great fun on a hot day and even more fun (safely) pelting your friend or loved one with a foam ball and soaking them.

#2: Slamwich Game

If you like board games and getting super competitive with your family this is a great game for you. The Zapalac-Wixted familyscreen-shot-2017-06-20-at-10-28-56-pm is a big proponent of board games. We own a ton and have enjoyed most of them. Except you Monkey’s Jumping on The Bed Game… you were a big pain in the ass.

Based on a recommendation from my nine-year-old I picked up Slamwich at Target. The instructions are a little difficult to process at first, but once you get the gist of it, it is terrific fun! Basically, you are trying to make a sandwich with the cards and the goal is to steal all the players’ cards. The person with all the cards in the end wins. It is better when you play with three to six players rather than two. It can get loud and out of control, but that’s just how we roll in my house.

#3: Bunch O Balloons

screen-shot-2017-06-20-at-10-30-40-pmIf you like to (safely) take out your rage and frustration on your brothers, sisters, sons, or daughters who have been bugging you while sitting at home all day long during summer break, this is a fun product for you. No, I don’t have anger management issues, however, when you are spending all your time together every day, you start driving each other a little batty.

I purchased Bunch O Balloons at Target. Yes… I know, I shop at Target way too much. I found the 280-pack of balloons in the summer section, next to the Dunk Hat game. You can also find a super duper jumbo Bunch O Balloons pack at Costco.

All you do is take out a bunch of the balloons, hook the bunch up to your hose and start filling up those bad boys.  Shake the balloons off your hose when they are filled. Then proceed to throw them relentlessly at your family and friends. Now, if you don’t fill them up enough, they will not pop and they may sting when they hit you. Don’t be stingy with the H2O. We went through our 280 balloons in about two minutes, but it sure was a fun two minutes.

#4: Costco Blow Up Pool

If you like to cool off on those hot days and do not have a country club membership, access to a beach, or a public pool, this isscreen-shot-2017-06-20-at-10-32-34-pm for you. (Note: the pool in the link above is not the exact one I purchased, but is similar.)

Like my Vitamix, 500 count plastic forks, and 13.5 pound bag of baking soda, I bought this blow up pool on a whim while at Costco. It is only sold in the stores.

My kids have had a blast with the pool. It features built-in blow up benches for sitting, cup holders, and is big enough to fit a family of four (or eight wild children).  Word of warning, you must have an electric pump to blow this SOB up or you will be 95 before it is filled. I ordered a $3 electric pump from which blows the pool up in about three minutes.

The pool is huge and takes up quite a bit of space. As a result, a ton of water is needed to fill it up. When the kids are finished playing in it I take buckets and pour the pool water in my flower pots and garden.  The rest of the water is drained on the lawn.  Super fun pool that will likely pop before summer is over, however the time we have had with it has been priceless.

#5: Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker

screen-shot-2017-06-20-at-10-34-41-pmIf you like to enjoy delicious homemade ice cream made with real cream and real sugar, this is for you. I took my kids to Michigan right after school got out and we picked nine pounds of strawberries. What the heck do you do with nine pounds of strawberries? You make a hell-of-a-lot of strawberry ice cream, that’s what.

I found a vanilla ice cream recipe in one of my mom’s old Betty Crocker cookbooks. I bought a truckload of organic heavy whipping cream, light cream, and real sugar. You know, the cane stuff that doesn’t come in a little yellow, blue, or pink packet. We blended in the pureed strawberries we picked and ran that liquid crack through the ice cream maker. Holy hell, it was like heaven on a spoon.

Wishing you all a fun, wet, and ice cream filled summer break!


Can’t get enough? Here are a couple of my recently published pieces:

Seven Words I Would Have Children S-P-E-L-L If I Were Running The National Spelling Bee, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency
The Most Boss Gift Ideas To Give This Administrative Professionals’ Day, The Second City

Some Other Fun Blog Posts To Check Out:

George and Amal Clooney Have The Audacity To Go “Normal”
An Open Letter To My Childrens’ School Lunch
Five Tips For Making It Through Your First Mother’s Day When Mom Dies

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