Visit the Shaks

  • Shak In Style
  • Shakhammer
  • Love Shak, Baby
  • LoanShak
  • ShakYard
  • WorkShak
  • Shaktronics
  • Shak & Jill
  • Animal Shak

  • Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

  •  Shak In Style. Everything to do with your (stylish) shak.
  • Shak & Jill

    Join Jill for savvy Real Estate discussion.
    visit the shak!

    Did you know?

  • Pets and children can become stressed during moving. If moving locally, you may want to leave these special family members with a friend during moving day.
  • read all shaktoids!
    June 26, 2015
    Friday Fun Video: Amazing Sugar Sculptures

    This is hypnotic! How cool :)

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    May 21, 2015
    Spring Activity: DIY Wind Chimes

    I’m a big fan of kids’ activities that let them develop their creative side. Whether it be through play, art, crafts, music, dance, or any other form of expression, creative activity is essential for kids. Well, this post by Jackie at Happy Hooligans has the perfect summer craft that combines both art and music- DIY, kid-friendly wind chimes. I love the look and sound of wind chimes! I think they’re just really relaxing, and they make your yard look whimsical. I can’t wait to try some of these myself- the wooden rainbow chimes are gorgeous.

    -Coffee can wind chime 

    -Rainbow wind chimes

    - Summer Stars

    -Water bottle whirligig

    Photo Credit: Richard Elzey 

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    May 11, 2015
    How To Set Up A Treasure Hunt Game

    For my last anniversary, I set up a treasure hunt game for my boyfriend. I left presents all over the town where we met, and each present had a clue to where the next one was. I was waiting at the end with his real present- a weekend trip to Gatlinburg. It was so much fun, and I know it meant a lot to him. You can play a variant of this same game at home, with your partner, or with your kids. Kids will love solving the clues and finding little toys and treats everywhere. Check out this post by Catherine Holecko at Family Fitness for tips:

    -Pick a prize and find a place to hide it

    -Write out your clues. Draw pictures for younger players, write out riddles and math problems to challenge older kids.

    -Hide your clues- make it challenging, but not enough to end up in frustration.

    -Hand over the first clue and set the wheels in motion!

    Photo Credit: Tom Garnett 

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    May 7, 2015
    (Edible) Paint Recipe

    When watching infants and young toddlers, it can be easy to fall into a rut. Wake up, breakfast, nap, lunch, play, watch tv, nap, dinner, bath time, bed. While it’s good for all children to be on a dependable schedule, it’s also important to vary what you do every day. I try to take my nephew outside, read him books, play silly games with him, and sing and dance with him as often as possible. But more often than I like, I end up just letting the TV babysit him. I’d love to introduce more activities to him. That’s why I really like this post by Clarissa at Munchkins and Moms. Here is her recipe for infant safe, edible paint. PS, be ready for a MESSY activity! :

    -Mix rice cereal and water together until it reaches the consistency of finger paint. Add a few drops of food coloring and you’re done! Let your baby go crazy!

    Photo Credit: Stephanie Sicore 

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    May 6, 2015
    Wordless Wednesday: Babysitter Hack

    Photo from Lifehack

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    April 29, 2015
    Wordless Wednesday: Playroom In Closet

    Photo from Pinterest

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    April 22, 2015
    Wordless Wednesday: Chore Magnets

    Photo from Etsy

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    April 7, 2015
    Spring Activity Idea: Renaissance Festivals, A Guide

    I’m a total Renaissance festival geek. I’ve been going for about four years now, and I absolutely love it. I love dressing up, eating turkey legs, exploring castles, and watching jousting. Plus, visiting a Renaissance festival is a great family activity. It gives you the chance to be outdoors, try new things, and be a bit silly together. It also encourages creativity and imagination by allowing your kids to create their own costumes and explore a fantasy world for a few hours!  If you are thinking of going to one with your children soon, here’s my guide to everything you need to know about the Ren-Fair: 

    Tips for having fun and being safe:


    -Dressing up is not required, but it always makes the fair more fun! Kids will have a blast picking out their outfits.

    -Here are some ideas for costumes: King, queen, pirate, viking, princess/prince, knight, peasant, fairy, thief, assassin, elf, faun, troll, fortune teller, woodland nymph, archer, mermaid, unicorn, dragon, werewolf, vampire. Have fun creating your own character, or go as a character from your favorite series, like Lord of the Rings, How to Train Your Dragon, or even games like World of Warcraft. Anything goes.

    -Wear comfortable shoes! I made the mistake of wearing flip-flops last year, and the path was gravel. Ouch! Try boots or flats if you want your footwear to match your costume.

    -Be aware of dress code rules. Each renaissance fair is different- be sure to check their website for rules concerning revealing clothing (most do not allow it, and want to keep their fairs family appropriate), and weapon props.


    -Most fairs charge for admission, but also have a discounted price for kids. Some may even have lower rates for groups.

    -Bring extra money (cash) for food, drinks, and souvenirs. If you’re a fantasy geek, you’ll definitely want to hit up the shops. Many fairs also have shops that cater to kids. Last year, I saw kids running around in fairy wings, face paint, pirate hats, and waving around wooden swords. There are also some pretty cool renaissance themed toys for sale- and they are usually handcrafted and high quality. 

    -Activities- There is always something going on at the festivals! Most have shows like magicians, comedy, music, animal shows, and even jousting. A lot of these are free, and are perfect for kids (always check the “ratings” on your festival program. Some may not be appropriate for young children). However, performers always appreciate tips. There may even be activities that you pay to do, like archery, mazes, human chess, or even carnival rides or games. The memories and fun are worth it though!


    -Since renaissance festivals happen in the Spring and Summer, it’s most likely going to be very hot. Do your best to stay hydrated. Bring your own water bottle (or viking drinking horn) if they allow outside food. If not, bring plenty of cash for drinks.

    -Stay together! Always supervise your child. Fairs are usually extremely crowded. Make sure your child has your name and phone number on them in case they get lost.

    -If you buy toy/prop weapons, make sure your child is handling them properly. Again, supervision is key.

    -Familiarize yourself with locations of bathrooms and first aid areas.

    Tips for saving money:

    -If you haven’t caught on yet, renaissance festivals can get costly if you let them. But it doesn’t have to be that way!

    -Buy tickets ahead of time. Pre-sales tend to be a few bucks cheaper

    -Pack your own food and drinks if your fair allows outside food.

    -Make your own costumes by shopping at thrift stores.

    -Only go to free shows and activities. You’d be surprised how many are included with the cost of admission.

    -Set a shopping budget for your kids. You can

    find lots of fun, handmade trinkets for under 10 bucks. 


    Photo Credit: Fairy , Fairy Wings, Butterfly Paint, Young Pirate

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    March 25, 2015
    Wordless Wednesday: Adorable Kitchen Playset

    Photo and instructions from Ikea Hackers

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    March 6, 2015
    Friday Fun Video: Human Hungry Hippo Game

    If you work in a school, at a church, or at a community center and have a gym, please give me a call. I need to play this. I mean, I feel like kids would have a blast doing this. :)

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati