Are We There Yet? Tips for Stress Free Travel

Everyone is so excited to reach their destination but the joy of getting there can be equally as fun.  Find unexpected thrills in the little things along the way; trying new foods, picking up hilarious mementos from rest stops, turning the music up and having a family sing along.  Planning in advance is the key to stress-free travel.

Here are a few tips for traveling with kids that have helped all of us here at Pillow Pets with family travels. Some of our favorite family memories are the funny things that happened to us on vacation. These experiences become fun family stories for years to come.

  • Hand out new activities every hour or so to keep kids entertained. A new colored marker or sheet of stickers can help kids pass the time happily, while eagerly anticipating their next gift.
  • Bring a buddy along. A Pillow Pet can be a cuddly companion as well as a comfy pillow for naps along the way. Our new Cars 3 characters are great for road trips, or add in a new Sweet-Scented Plush Pillow Pet to help make the journey even sweeter. DreamLites can brighten up nights spent in unfamiliar hotel rooms or houses.
  • Check out the latest kids’ trip activities on Pinterest. You can find printable games and coloring sheets, craft ideas for creative kids and tons of ideas to keep children of all ages wiggle-free.
  • Prepare for pit stops. Rushing causes stress for everyone. You do not have to do it all in one day. To break up the travel, stop every few hours and let kids play. A quick game of tag or catch at a park can break up the drive without losing too much time. Plus, releasing some pent-up energy may help kids settle into a much-needed nap.
  • Finding food on the go can be tricky so locate kid-friendly meal options in advance. This way you will know exactly how many miles between pit stops and can distribute snacks accordingly.

Driving across the United States this summer? Here are a few road side attractions to amuse you and to take amazing selfies to share:

  • Wigwam Village in Holbrook, Arizona
  • Calico Ghost Town in Yermo, CA
  • Dinosaurs at Cabazon, CA
  • Cadillac Ranch, Amarillo, TX
  • Benewah Milk Bottles, Spokane, WA
  • The Blue Whale, Catoosa, OK
  • Jolly Green Giant, Blue Earth, MN
  • London Bridge, Lake Havasu, AZ
  • Longaberger Basket HQ, Newark, OH
  • Paul Bunyan Statue, Bemidji, MN
  • World’s Largest Ball of Twine, Cawker City, KS
  • World’s Largest Buffalo, Jamestown, ND
  • World’s Largest Light Bulb, Edison, NJ
  • World’s Largest Thermometer, Baker, CA

Taking your Pillow Pet on vacation with you? Then be sure to share your journey with us. We would love to see where you’ve been and what your Pillow Pet travel buddy has been up to on your travels. Be sure to share your tips for traveling with kids in the comment box below!

A few of the best vacation memories can come from the journey you take to on the way to your destination. You may have found a new favorite food at that restaurant off the beaten path. Or maybe learned a new fact at an impromptu stop at a local museum. With the right attitude and preparations, you’ll be asking “are we there already?”

 

Cars 3 is racing to the screens next month!

Who is excited to see the new Cars 3 movie? Pillow Pets is super excited, and we have joined in on the fun with new Cars 3 Pillow Pet styles including Jackson Storm, Lightning McQueen, and Tow Mater.  For those who don’t know about the new movie, here’s a synopsis from Disney:

After being trounced in a race by upstart newcomer Jackson Storm, everyone begins to wonder if Lighting McQueen should retire. But Lightning isn’t ready to throw in the towel yet, and with the help of another rookie – Cruz Ramirez – the old dog is going to learn some new tricks and attempt a comeback in the Florida 500.

Of course a new movie wouldn’t be complete without new characters to stir things up. Entertainment Weekly sat with Pixar Director, Brian Fee, and here is how he describes the new “stars”:

Jackson Storm, the “millennial” who thinks everything is rightfully his: “Jackson was born with a silver spoon in his mouth. Everything comes easy to him, and everything about him says he’s faster, so much so that we’ve designed him so that even when he’s standing next to McQueen, McQueen looks old.”

Cruz Ramirez is the female rookie that’s going to help McQueen get his ka-chow back!  “As a lifelong fan of McQueen, she’s optimistic, sunny, fierce, and friendly — and now, she’s his new, younger coach, coming to Lightning’s aid with stars in her eyes when he shows up at the Rust-eze Racing Center.”

As with Cars and Cars 2, there are many touching moments in Cars 3; that touch our heart and our funny bone. Here’s a look back at several scenes from the previous movies:

Lightning McQueen:  “There is a big blue sky waiting just behind the clouds.”

Mater: “My name is Mater.”
Lightning McQueen: “Mater?”
Mater: “Yeah, like tuh-mater, but without the ‘tuh.”

Mater: “I know’d I made a good choice!”
Lightning McQueen: “In what?”
Mater: “My best friend…”

Lightning McQueen: “I create feelings in others that they themselves don’t understand.”

Mater: “Git-R-Done!” 

The website Oh My Disney provided some interested facts about the original Cars movie:

  1. The 1952 Walt Disney Studios short, “Susie, the Little Blue Coupe,” served as the impetus that sparked the idea forCars decades later.
  2. Luigi’s license plate reads 445-108, which is the latitude and longitude for the Ferrari factory in Modena, Italy.
  3. A Model T named Lizzie appears in the film as homage to Ford’s original 1913 “Tin Lizzie,” the first mass-produced car.
  4. The filmmaker team went on a rambling tour of Route 66 during pre-production where they examined everything from roadkill to clouds to roadside icons.
  5. Animators drew over 43,000 sketches of cars during the visual development phase of filmmaking.
  6. The name “Cozy Cone” was inspired by the Cozy Dog Drive-In of Springfield, Illinois, which lays claim to being birthplace of the corn dog.

The Cars 3 Pillow Pets embody the racing spirit of the Cars characters making them a must-have for all racing fans.

Jackson Storm Pillow Pet

It’s a high octane thrill ride with the Jackson Storm Pillow Pet. This super cool opponent on the track is a stuffed animal for imaginative play that turns into a comfy pillow for bed time. A new character in the hit movie Cars 3, Jackson Storm delivers all the fun and excitement of the Disney movie as a huggable Pillow Pet.

Lightning McQueen Pillow Pet

Back for a chance at the Piston Cup is fan-favorite Lightning McQueen who is ready to reclaim his championship. This plush version will rev any young fans imagination as a stuffed animal for creative daytime play and a pillow for sweet racing dreams. Our Lightning McQueen Pillow Pet is the perfect addition for any racing themed room.

Tow Mater Pillow Pet

The loveable Tow Mater returns to the screen in Cars 3, a delightful tale of racing, friendship and humor. The Tow Mater Pillow Pet is the perfect companion for any child as both a stuffed animal by day and a comfy pillow by night. Kids will love his adorable  play features for day time fun and benefit from his comfy plushness at bedtime.

Jackson Storm Jumboz Pillow Pet

Start your engines! There is super-sized racing fun with the Jumboz Jackson Storm Pillow Pet. This 30” Pillow Pet turns into a comfy pillow for television or study time. Fold it back up to a stuffed animal and you have the perfect room décor for any racing fan.

Lightning McQueen Jumboz Pillow Pet

This sleek red racer is twice the fun as a Jumboz Pillow Pet. Lightning McQueen, the star of Disney’s movie series Cars 3, provides extra large stuffed fun as a comfy pillow for television or study time. Fold it back up to a stuffed animal and you have the perfect room décor for any racing fan.

Lightning McQueen Dream Lite

When your child is ready to turn off their engine and drift off to a peaceful night sleep, the Lightning McQueen Dream Lite is the perfect way to ease into sweet dreams.  The Pillow Pets Dream Lites illuminate playful icons and star patterns onto the ceiling. Alternating hues of amber, blue and green light set the scene for a peaceful night slumber. A 20-minute timer gives just enough time to fall asleep.  During the day, the Dream Lites make stylish and fun room décor.

Jackson Storm Dream Lite

Even race cars need to rest their engines and the Jackson Storm Dream Lite will encourage every little racer to drift off to a peaceful night sleep under the watchful eye of their favorite Cars 3 character. The Pillow Pets Dream Lites illuminate playful icons and star patterns onto the ceiling. Alternating hues of amber, blue and green light set the scene for a peaceful night slumber. A 20-minute timer gives just enough time to fall asleep.  During the day, the Dream Lites make stylish and fun room décor.

Tow Mater Dream Lite

Tow Mater the friendly and funny sidekick from Disney’s Cars 3 makes a great night time buddy as a Dream Lite. Your faithful friend will send you off to dream land with a smile as playful icons and star patterns reflect on the ceiling. Alternating hues of amber, blue and green light set the scene for a peaceful night slumber. A 20-minute timer gives just enough time to fall asleep.  During the day, the Dream Lites make stylish and fun room décor.

Find all your Cars 3 favorites here!

Fill your Easter Basket with Sweetness!

Sweet Scented Pillow Pets are a great Easter gift on their own or as part of a basket. There are so many delicious smells to add to the Easter Fun:

Popcorn Panda smells like just popped, buttery movie popcorn. Make it a complete movie themed basket with a DVD or gift certificate for Redbox, a few bags of boxed movie style candy and a bag of popcorn.

Ice Pop Penguin is like summer in a stuffed animal with the delicious flavor of an orange ice pop. Design a summer themed gift basket and add a pair of sunglasses, some pool floaties, flip flops and a beach towel.  Use a beach pail instead of a basket.

Bring a touch of whimsy to Easter with the fresh spun Cotton Candy Unicorn.  Use a pink or purple basket and make a princess themed basket.  Add in a crown, wand and other sparkly goodies.

Pupcake delivers cupcakes with sugary vanilla frosting. Make this gift basket extra special by adding a few Easter themed cupcakes to the basket. Or, add in everything you need to decorate your own cupcakes; sprinkles, cupcake wrappers, food coloring, and cupcake decorations.

Gummi Pup is the fruity scent of the favorite gummy candy. Add Gummi Pup to your Easter Basket with a few different varieties of gummy candies. There are so many fun shapes to choose from.

Cookie Pup brings back the scent of ooey-gooey chocolatey just-out-of-the oven chocolate chip cookies. Make it a cookie themed basket and bake up some oval shaped chocolate chip cookies.  Or, add a spatula, oven mitts, a bag of chocolate chips and a mason jar layered with all the dry ingredients for home made chocolate chip cookies.

Watermelon Ladybug is reminiscent of a visit to a spring watermelon patch. Add in a variety of spring themed goodies like outdoor gardening tools and seeds.

Blueberry Muffin Bear smells just like a fresh baked blueberry muffin. Make an adorable blueberry themed basket with other blueberry scented treats. Or, add a blueberry muffin mix or fresh baked blueberry muffins to the basket.

You’ll feel like you just sat down at a diner with a freshly blended strawberry milkshake with the Strawberry Milkshake Cow. Add a gift certificate for a local diner or ice cream restaurant.

Enjoy the scent of a newly unwrapped piece of pink bubble gum with Bubble Gum Piggy. Make a bubble themed kit – add in bubbles and different sized bubble wands. A few pieces of favorite bubble gum candy or some gum balls too.

What should you put in your Easter Basket – you can use the suggestions above or you can make up your own.

  • First take an over sized basket – purchase or paint your own in a pastel color.
  • Add grass – store bought or you can make your own, just shred colored paper in your home shredder.
  • Sweet Scented Pet – add a Sweet Scented Pet to the center of the basket.
  • Add your goodies as listed above.
  • Wrap with cellophane and a big bow.

Feel like decorating eggs? Go traditional or start a new trend.

You can purchase the store dye kit or you can make your own dye:

Mix 1/2 cup boiling water, 1 teaspoon vinegar and 10 to 20 drops food color in a cup to achieve desired colors. Repeat for each color. Dip hard-cooked eggs in dye for about 5 minutes. Use a slotted spoon, wire egg holder or tongs to add and remove eggs from dye.

Not in the mood to dye your eggs? Here are some fun alternative ideas:

  • Use temporary tattoos and rub them onto the eggs.
  • Glue tissue paper cutouts in Easter or spring themed shapes onto the eggs.
  • Duct tape – there are so many fun and colorful styles of duct tape.
  • Water color paint using small brushes.

Can you find the eggs?

An Easter Egg Hunt is a great way to entertain the children, capture great memories with photos and video, and give out extra treats. If you have children of different ages attending you may want to have a system in place to make sure that everyone gets their fair share.

Set different times – you can have different divisions broken up by ages. You can either hide eggs between the “rounds” so there is a replenished supply. Or, you can set each age group in a different part of the house or yard.

Set different colored eggs – you can purchase the plastic Easter eggs from a local party supply store and designate a color or theme for each age division.

Or, let everyone go out at once but limit the number of eggs each person can get. Make sure you have an amount that is equally divisible by the number of guests attending the hunt. Make a few extra just in case there are spills or lost eggs. These can easily be slipped in at the last minute.

Also, make sure you draw a map of where and how many eggs you are hiding so you can make sure that none get left behind. You don’t want to leave any for animals, insects or get them confused for next year’s celebration.

No matter how you build your Easter festivities, it is a nice tradition to share with friends and family.As a special holiday treat, order any Sweet Scented Pillow Pet before Easter and you will receive free shipping.

Since it is always nice to give back, don’t forget to add a donation or round up at checkout to help Family Reach. Family Reach provides a financial lifeline to families facing a cancer diagnosis.

Spring Cleaning Sale

We are having a Spring Cleaning Sale! It’s such a great way to save on your favorite movie, film, television and original Pillow Pets characters.  You’ll save on Trolls Pillow Pets and Dream Lites, Dory and Nemo Dream Lites, Backpacks, Purses and Helmets.

The Trolls Pillow Pets and Dream Lites follow DreamWorks hit move Trolls. Trolls 2 takes place in April 2020 but that is a long time to wait and see Anna Kendrick and Justin Timberlake reprise their roles as Poppy and Branch.  Take advantage of this great sale and purchase a Poppy Pillow Pet and Dream Lite. At this price you can bundle them and make a great gift package. Or, give one now and save one for a later time.  These are also available in a Guy Diamond Pillow Pet and Dream Lite as well as a Branch Pillow Pet and Dream Lite.

Dory and Nemo, the break out stars of Disney’s Finding Nemo and the sequel Finding Dory are the cutest Dream Lites. They make great décor in any sea, beach or island themed room.   Dream Lites have a timer you can set for 20-minutes which allows little ones to drift off to a peaceful night’s sleep.  Hues of various colors transition while shining stars and the matching icon on the ceiling. These make a great gift for a toddler just learning to sleep in a darkened room.  At this price, buy two and give one to the grandparents to keep at their house for overnights.

Pillow Pets Backpacks are being retired and this is a great opportunity to get one to collect or use for overnights, slumber parties, gifts or a back-to-school present.   Some of our favorite Disney characters are available as backpacks including Perry the Platypus from Phineas and Ferb, Mickey Mouse, and Minnie Mouse.  Also, Pillow Pets favorite characters like the Zebra, Dog, Panda and Flower Power Cat are also available at a discounted price. A great gift idea: zip a pair of Pillow Pet PJs and Slippers into the Backpack for an extra fun gift pack.

The Pillow Pets purses are a great way to have stylish fun and tote your stuff around.  Pick from the Dog, Rainbow Bear, Flower Power Cat, Panda or Leopard.  The purse is roomy enough to hold a cell phone, tablet, book and more goodies.  This is definitely the plushest purse around.  Soft and with fun characters that will put a smile on anyone’s face.  For a super fun and special gift add a matching Poucheez clip.

The weather warms up and the kids are extremely excited to get outside for some exercise and play time.  Pillow Pets character-inspired plush helmets that encourage kids to exercise safety on their bicycles, scooters, rollerblades and skateboards in a fun way. The Tricksters Helmets launch includes five different styles: Rainbow Bear, Flower Power Cat, Lulu Leopard, Comfy Panda and Snuggly Puppy.

Tricksters Helmets are:

-CPSC certified: complies with CPSC and ASTMf1492 safety standards
– Molded 3D helmet design with 100% plush Chenille outer lining
-Shock-absorbing EPS inner shell protects the head.
-Aerodynamic cooling vents keep your head nice and cool.
-Nylon straps adjust for a great fit around your chin.

An adjustable fitting dial makes Trickster helmets fit every head perfectly. Available in two sizes, small and medium.  In addition to promoting bike safety, these playful kids’ helmets make it easy for parents to overcome the potentially challenging process of convincing their child to wear a helmet during outdoor activities.

Tricksters can be paired with the gift of a bicycle, roller blades or skateboard. Or, you can make a theme gift and put a Dog Trickster, Dog Pillow Pet, Dog Slippers and Dog Backpack together for a fun surprise. We also have multiple Pillow Pets products available in Panda, Flower Power Cat, Leopard and more.

Make sure and check out the the Spring Cleaning Sale before its gone!