An Epic Vegas Vacation With Kids

#DriveHyundai #LifeIsBeautiful raisedbyculture.com

You know you had an epic summer vacation when you are barely recovering in January. We usually do one big family trip out of state every year. Orlando, FL in 2013. Austin and San Antonio, TX in 2014. 2015 was going to be mellow. I was actually happy that our families were going to come to us. On the trip radar: Palm Springs for my epic birthday (more on that soon) and a Las Vegas primer for the kids. I did Life is Beautiful Festival solo in 2014 and had to take the familia. Art, music, learning and food – I was into it and knew they would be too. On this year’s lineup, our favorites Kendrick Lamar, Run the Jewels and Ghostface Killah with BADBADNOTGOOD.

The wanderlust was strong, I even curated a story about what we’d do in Vegas with the kids.

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Back To The Future With The Mazda 6

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This car is fly.

The homies at DriveShop knew what they were doing when they sent over the 2016 Mazda 6 i Grand Touring edition in soul red for our weeklong trip to Palm Springs. Ya girl + the familia was stylin’ + profilin’ out there. I love a good road trip but I suffer from a little anxiety. I blame it on having kids and getting older. The one thing that makes me feel safe is a safe car. I totally looked up the NHTSA rating – 5 stars and IIHS calls the Mazda6 a Top Safety Pick. Check. All systems go. Back to the color – soul red. This car made celebrating my 40th birthday feel like my 21st birthday. Vibrant and seeking adventure.

This baby got us to Palm Springs real smooth. Since I play navigator, I was feeling the forward-obstruction warning system and blind-spot monitoring system with rear cross-traffic alert. Features you miss when you return to the real world in your 10+ year old truck. Comfort, both kids fell asleep on the way there – I thought we would hit traffic but we got to the Coachella Valley in about an hour. No complaints cause comfy. I’m mostly in charge of the sound system and a/c too. With temps ranging from 108-112, you know I was pushing for 65 degrees at all times. The Mazda6 cooled quick and maintained.

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You The Real MVP, 2016 KIA Sedona

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When your parents haven’t been home in 8 years and your mama has made it clear that they are only using their hotel room to sleep, you want to know what they have planned for their weeklong California homecoming. See my parents aren’t your typical 60 year olds, they do thangs. Good things. I love hanging with my folks. They know what’s up. I definitely get my love of food and sense of adventure from them. There was no way our five seat SUV could handle our family + all that fun for a week. My friends at DriveShop never do me wrong and I knew they knew exactly what car we needed. A brand new 2016 KIA Sedona SXL. Nothing but the best for my folks! This is not your mama’s minivan.

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SoCal To NorCal With The Mazda5

Mazda 5 raisedbyculture.com

It wasn’t until I was in my 30s that I realized the best gift I can give my children are memories. My best memories are full of my family + trips. My baby, the baby of our family finally got to meet the patriarch, my grandpa, his great grandpa. Their age gap is 84 years. 84 YEARS. My papa is my last surviving grandparent. The trip had to happen. It was finally time to round up the kids and take the trip from SoCal to NorCal. Something we’ve been wanting to do forever! The thing is, we should have a minivan for our family of six but we don’t. It was awesome we got to check out the 2015 Mazda5 – a minivan big enough for our growing boys (toddlers to teenagers) and still maintain that cool factor.

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2015 Honda CR-V: Space For Dreams

#CRVSueños raisedbyculture.com

I got in to Phoenix hours ago and I’m just settling in, going over my day in my mind. The road trip took about five hours but with good conversation, a prime spot in the backseat and just the general excitement of the journey, it went by crazy fast. It triggered a flood of memories of the times I’ve spent in the car with my family. All of our daily drives to the long road trips… I haven’t even been gone a day and I miss them but I’m here, right where I should be, because I chased a dream. A dream, years in the making, that started happening when I’d pass somewhere and think to myself, hey I want to be there! I want to do that! I need my kids to know that living (real living) is when you dream. No dream is too big! The 2015 Honda CR-V Space for Dreams commercial had me in tears over the little girl.

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Easy Oil Change At Walmart

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #DropShopAndOil #CollectiveBias
#DropShopAndOil raisedbyculture.com

Car maintenance, not my thing. There are some things in our home I take care of and my husband Chris takes care of the rest. That’s just how we do it, it works for us. Just like Chris appreciates the stuff I do and keep on automatic, I appreciate that he keeps up with getting our truck’s oil changed. It is like clockwork for him, he knows when to go in and he does it without complaints. After the holidays, I wanted to surprise my husband (cause he’s awesome) so I convinced him to go shopping with us at Walmart. I told him to pull up to the Automotive Care Center on the side and basically said, “SURPRISE OIL CHANGE!

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Kia Optima SX Turbo & NASA Social

Chris never felt so strongly about a car we’ve reviewed (or rented) until the Kia Optima SX Turbo came in to our life. He couldn’t stop staring. I couldn’t stop staring. The neighbors could not stop staring. The design is just so stunning for a midsize sedan, you couldn’t help but look, looking was contagious. A few of the neighbors were genuinely curious and excited about my husband’s new car while it sat in our space in the carport. It would be our turbocharged transport north to Lompoc, CA so I could attend the launch of OCO-2 at Vandenberg Air Force Base as an invited guest of NASA Social. The 3 hour ride was so smooth that it felt like an hour and we didn’t even need to fill up till we returned home. Not only did the Kia Optima SX Turbo get us up there safely but in style. Chris didn’t want to give the car up. I was worried he might cry when he had to hand the keys over. It now has the #1 spot on the cars we want to own list. Even the oldest teenager wants one. Kia Optima SX raisedbyculture.com

Kia Optima SX raisedbyculture.com

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2015 Honda Fit Reimagined #FitForYou

2015 Honda Fit Launch : raisedbyculture.com

2015 Honda Fit Launch : raisedbyculture.comI get a lot of crappy emails but then there are days that’s like Christmas morning… like the one time I got an email inviting me to a Honda launch event in San Diego.  First, I never say no to San Diego.  That is one of my cardinal rules and really, it should be the general rule for everyone.  And hello, Honda!  Being a teenager in Long Beach in the 90s – all the cool kids had Honda Civics or Accords.  It was the car to have for your first car.  My husband’s first car was a passed down Honda Accord and we would’ve kept it if we didn’t need more room for our growing family.  It was so good to us for being 18 years old and it was still a looker!  I was sold on Honda looks, price and safety years ago so it was interesting to get a sneak peek at their newest launch.

I could give you all the specs copied and pasted from press releases but I’m going to tell you what I loved about the all new 2015 Honda Fit and how it fits me and my teenagers.

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My Future As A Mommy Rapper…

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My husband and I are silly and random.  So when he tells me to bust out a rap, I don’t question him – I do it.  Turns out he was recording me with Auto Rap app and this is my song, My Boys Shirts.  Its kinda catchy and makes us all laugh.  I think I sound a little like Kreayshawn.

More proof, I am that Mom!  This app is fun for the whole family!
I sound like Kreayshawn

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