Thursday, December 7, 2023

Prince of Egypt Musical Movie Release


Prince of Egypt Musical Made Into a Family Movie

Imagine sitting with your kids in the best orchestra seats in the house at the West End's Dominion Theater to see a performance of the Original London Company's hit Prince of Egypt musical, based on the DreamWorks popular animated movie from 1998 by the same name. Now that this spectacular musical production has been filmed live before an audience and turned into a movie, you can experience the movie Prince of Egypt: The Musicalbrought to you by Universal Pictures, in the comfort of your own home because the film is now available to buy or rent on digital so you can watch it at home. 

Prince of Egypt The Musical Cast London

Enter to WIN an Amazon Gift Card
Details Below

After seeing this new movie myself, I'm hard-pressed to say what I liked best and which was most magnificient: the pageantry, special effects of Moses and the Ten Plagues, Stephen Schwartz’s musical score and the singing including the Academy Award-winning song
"When You Believe," the magical stage sets and lighting, Stan Chessman's choreography or the show-stopping costumes. There's so much I could say about each of those elements. So suffice it to say that everything you'd expect to see in a world-class musical is there for your senses to take in. 

To keep this review at a readable length, though, I'd like to focus and dig down into why the show's costumes are so note-worthy and all the ways they've added to the viewer's experience. 
Featuring a cast of 60 performers, Prince of Egypt is one of the largest, most impressive musicals ever staged. The costumes worn by all performers -- both the principal artists and the chorus which includes several really talented kids -- are a mesmerizing testament to the artistic vision and meticulous craftsmanship envisioned and executed by American designer Ann Hould-Ward. These costumes invite the audience to time travel back to ancient Egypt with stunning costume details which aid the telling of the story.

Prince of Egypt Musical Movie Principal Performers

Hould-Ward, who won the 1994 Tony for Best Costume Design for Disney's Beauty and The Beast, expertise continues to shine in her ability to blend historical accuracy with a touch of theatrical flair, creating a visual spectacle that complements the grandeur of the production. In Prince of Egypt: The Musical, costumes for the ensemble cast showcase a rich array of textures, colors, and intricate embellishments. The vibes of the opulent attire of Egyptian royalty, adorned in lavish fabrics and ornate jewelry, contrasting with the humble, simple, and earthy toned garb worn by the Hebrew slaves is a feast for the eyes. 

Truly, each of the designer's costume is thoughtfully tailored to reflect the character's background, status, and place in the story. Hould-Ward's attention to detail is evident in the meticulous research behind each costume piece. Every headdress, robe, and accessory is crafted with precision, drawing inspiration from ancient Egyptian art and culture to perfectly blend historical authenticity with theatrical grandeur. The result is a captivating experience to anyone who sees this, whether on stage or in the movie which gives one the advantage of being able to get a closeup look at all these amazing costumes.

Prince of Egypt Original London Musical Movie

Whether you're a lover of musicals and/or reenacted Bible stories from the Book of Exodus, The Prince of Egypt: The Musical is an epic and inspiring tale of resilience and hope, a movie both kids and adults will appreciate and enjoy watching together at home. See the official Movie Trailer. Now available to Buy or Rent on Digital.

Amazon Gift Card

WIN a $10 Amazon Gift Card

Here's how to Enter, Get up to FIVE (5) Chances to WIN!
  • Comment on this blogpost below
  • Follow @MommyBlogExpert here -> Instagram
  • Follow @MommyBlogExpert here -> Facebook
  • Follow @MommyBlogExpert here on -> X (formerly Twitter)
  • Comment on this -> Instagram post
Contest ends December 14, 2023 at 11:59 pm ET and winner must respond to email sent from janis at within 24 hours to claim prize. The Amazon $10 Gift Card prize we are giving away is being provided by Momentum, who is responsible for delivery to the winner.

Thanks to NBC Universal for providing me with the opportunity to screen this new movie to facilitate my review. Opinions here are 100% my own.

Sunday, December 3, 2023

Best Hanukkah Gift Guide for Kids, Adults


Hanukkah 2023 is December 7-15

Oh Hanukkah, oh Chanukah, come light the menorah. As the traditional song goes and however you spell this holiday transliterated into English from the original Hebrew, if you, freinds or family celebrate, it's time to finish your shopping for the 8-night Jewish Festival of Lights. To help you wrap up the task of buying presents your kids and the rest of your family and friends will love, MommyBlogExpert has compiled our picks for the perfect gift for everyone of every age on your list.

Best Chanukah Gifts Kids Grownups

This post contains affiliate links with some featured products gifted for review

Gift suggestions curated by MBE are all things I personally love, from my favorite places to shop: Amazon, Etsy, Bergdorf Goodman, Bloomingdales, Birch Lane, Build-A-Bear, and Crate and Barrel.

For Babies and Toddlers, Ages 0-5

Isn't this Baby Girl Handmade Hanukkah Outfit the cutest? Bodysuit (regular short sleeve or flutter long sleeve) available in sizes premie to 24 months. Additional add-on accessories pictured include tutu bloomers, leg warmers, headband, necklace, and barefoot sandals.

For boys and girls this Personalized Baby's First Hanukkah Unisex Onsie will create warm memories for family and friends you are celebrating with this year. Available in short and long sleeve options, the each personalized onsie includes the child's name and year.
Chanukah Baby Toddler Gifts

This Jewish Holiday Cloth Baby Book which can be personalized with your child's name is interactive with something special on every page. Destined to become one of your little one's favorite books to read together.

For toddlers old enough to play with play dough, this Set of 6 Wood Stampers would make a wonderful gift. High quality, handcrafted solid wood stamps include a candle, menorah, Magen David Jewish Star, sufaganiot (a jelly doughnut), oil pitcher, and dreidel.  

For Kids Ages 5-10

For crafty kids, how about this DIY Menorah Craft Kit. Easy and fun to make, this set includes everything needed to make this kids menorah: wood pieces, paint, decorations, craft clue, and paint mixing tray.

Keep elementary kids busy with this Pop & Spin Hanukkah Board Game. A new, fun way for them to play the game of dreidel which is enclosed under a plastic dome that one presses down to make it pop and "spin" the dreidel. The best part: it's not electronic and Shabbat friendly!

Chanukah Kids Toys Gifts

The perfect gift for children is this Build-A-Bear 8 Nights of Hanukkah Workshop set. The box, which is available exclusively online, features a little box to open each night of Chanukah. Included are a total of 8 surprise items for kids to "unwrap" : 2 mini plush bear toys and 6 assorted mini clothing pieces and accessories.

This Menora Wall Hanging Banner with velcro candles and flames is a classic gift that my own kids grew up with. Beautifully machine embroidered, this colorful interactive fabric decoration makes it possible for kids to add a new pretend candle and "light" it each night of the holiday.

For Tweens

Kids who love standing out from the crowd are gonna to love this Plush Menorah Hairband with Candles. The perfect accessory to wear to Hanukkah parties and celebrations this year! 

This Hanukkah Bead Jewelry Making Set comes with everything need to make two bracelets or one necklace. Includes the gold and blue and white beads and charms pictured as well as elastic cord to thread on to create wearable holiday bling.

Chanukah Tween Gifts

Tweens (and likely Teens) will enjoy DIY manicures with these adorable and uber trendy Hanukkah Fingernail Manicure Decals. Includes dozens of Chanukah themed decals: dreidels, menorahs, Hebrew letters, and more.

These Sparkling Menorah Pierced Earrings will complete the outfit she's wearing to that Hanukkah party she was invited to. Handmade, light weight and above all festive.

For Teens

Teenage girls who keep up on the latest fashion trends will love this Handmade Hanukkah Knot Hairband. With hairbands being very in vogue right now, this hair accessory bejeweled with faux jewels and Jewish-inspired charms will amp up her holiday look this season.

What teen isn't always hungry? Mrs. Prindables Jumbo Hanukkah Candy Apple is just the sweet treat teenage guys and gals will savor. Available in an assortment of flavor combos, Kosher certified Dairy by CRC and festively presented as pictured with a blue decorated bow.

Chanukah Gifts for Teens

This Personalized Hebrew Name Necklace is so popular right now with more young Jews proudly showing off love of their heritage. Available in a choice of sterling silver, gold plated or roseplated, in a variety of Hebrew letter fonts.

What could be better to give than this Handmade Hanukkah Gelt Cashbox? This money box is ideal for hard to shop for teenagers as a truly memorable way to give a gift of gelt by taping dollar bills or even Israeli paper currency end to end. Includes mini gift bag, adorned with a sparkling dreidel, to present this gift to the recipient.


This Sparkling Menorah Handcrafted Glass Ornament is just the thing to decorate their first apartment. Whether they hang it up in a window or on their wall this is a beautiful small gift they'll likely treasure as they move from place to place till they finally settle down.

The recipient will stay cozy and warm in this comfy Flannel Hanukkah Pajama 2-Piece Set. Long-sleeved with "I Love You Latke" on the cuff in an adorable pattern of dogs, cats, menorahs and Jewish stars. 

Chanukah Gifts for Young Adults

Give this Rustic Golden Branch Menorah to celebrate a special 20-something's first Chanukah away from home. A gorgeous modern goldtone metal rendition of the classic menorah, this stands 18 inches tall and can double as a table centerpiece in their small apartment.

Whether you're gifting them a Menorah or they already have one, these Blue Ombre Menorah Candles will beautify their Hanukkiah. Includes a full set of 45 hand-dipped paraffin and palm wax candles, enough to light the menorah for all eight nights.

For Grownups 30+

Guys and Gals who love baking will appreciate this Hanukkah Wood Embossing Rolling Pin. Handmade solidly out of beechwood, the user rolls the 15.8" long x 2.4" diameter pin over cookie dough to create a lovely raised pattern features symbols of Chanukah such as the menorah, Star of David, dreidel and more.

No matter how old the recipient, this tasty and festive Hanukkah Handmade Goodie Box will be a welcome nostalgic gift. Brought to you from the heart of the Borscht Belt in Upstate New York, the box of Chanukah themed individually-wrapped treats certified OU - Dairy includes 1 decorated holiday cupcake, 10 cookie assortment, and cinnamon rugelach.

Chanukah Gifts for Adults

For those who love entertaining, how about the HotMat, to keep food hot or to warm it up? This is a must-have small kitchen appliance: a modular, expandable 2-burner electric hot plate which the recipient will truly appreciate when serving guests for Hanukkah, as well as for warming or reheating food for Shabbat and other celebratory occasions throughout the year. Watch for a separate upcoming review post with more about this kitchen wonder product and how I'm using this during Hanukkah soon.  

These 100% cotton washable Blue/White Pomegranate Tea Towels would be a thoughtful gift for your host/hostess or even yourself. The blue and white design on this generously-sized 20" x 30" set of three tea towels is perfect for Hanukkah but may also be used year-round.

DISCLOSURE: We participate in Amazon as well as other affiliate advertising programs that allows our site to earn a bit of compensation for including referral links (without extra cost to consumers who make a purchase) based on MBE's recommendations.

Friday, November 17, 2023

Trolls Band Together, Universal Studios


TrollsFest, Movie Review, Universal Studios Parks

by MBE Kids Editor
Rachel Marks

TrollsFest Movie Pre-Release Kickoff 

My family and I had the most enchanting time at TrollsFest, a pop up event promoting DreamWorks latest kids movie Trolls Band Together. The outdoor event took place outdoors at Century City Westfield in Los Angeles earlier this month, ahead of the picture's opening on November 17 nationwide.

TrollsFest Poppy Mom Toddler

MBE partnered with Trolls Band Together, post contains affiliate links

We arrived at TrollsFest with high spirits and anticipation as my family are big fans of everything Trolls-related, especially the previous two Trolls movies, Trolls and Trolls World Tour, which are both available to rent or buy. Joining me for the day for this fun live family entertainment assignment were my three kids -- Izzy, Ori, and Arya (ages 5, 2.5, and 1), my husband Chaim, and my dear friend Danielle along with her two sons, Jojo and Alex, ages 6 and 2.

The variety of activities catered to a wide age range of girls and boys activities. From Trolls makeovers (hair, nails, and makeup by Hally Hair and Sally Hansen Nail Polish), meet and greets with the characters to a chance to spin the wheel to win prizes like Trolls Poppy & Pout lip balm and movie theater tickets from Fandango to see Trolls Band Together, a Trolls-inspired miniature golf course,  and more, there was something for everyone making this an ideal family outing for both sons and daughters.

One of the highlights of the event's festivities for my husband and I was undoubtedly Izzy's sheer excitement upon meeting his all-time favorite Trolls character, Poppy in real life. The joy and amazement in his eyes as he interacted with Poppy was truly heartwarming to watch and made for some wonderful photo opportunities that will make wonderful mementos for the future.
Izzy and his buddy Jojo were inseparable throughout the afternoon, sharing all the fun that TrollsFest had to offer. Another especially memorable moment was the video photo booth opportunity for the kids to record themselves performing on stage with the film's all-star boy band, BroZone. There was also a Trolls Party Plane photo opp provided by Southwest Airlines, but my toddler lost his attention span, so we couldn't stick around and wait our turn for that one.

Trolls-themed food and drinks also did not disappoint. In addition to brightly colored Trolls flavored Icee drinks which our boys loved, there was also Shine Water in specially-designed bottles and a Trolls milkshake by Shake Shack available. Ultimately, TrollsFest proved to be an immersive fan event like no other for us all.

TrollsFest Boys With Icee Drinks

Trolls Band Together Mom's Movie Review

Shortly before the movie was officially released to the public, my boys and I had the chance to see Trolls Band Together on the big screen. 

My big boy, already very familiar with the Trolls enterprise and all the loveble and colorful characters, absolutely loved it. Meanwhile, though it was the first Trolls movie he has seen, my 2-1/2 year-old seemed mesmerized by the on screen action of all the colorful characters as well as the soundtrack playing in the background. 

Speaking of the characters, it's worth noting that the movie's voiceover cast includes some of Hollywood's best known names: Anna Kendrick (Queen Poppy), Zooey Deschanel (Bridget), Justin Timberlake (Branch), Amy Schumer (Velvet), Troye Sivan (Floyd), Camila Cabello (Viva), Eric Andre (John Dory) Zosia Mamet (Crimp), Daveed Diggs (Spruce), Kid Cudi (Clay), among others.

The story revolves around Poppy who learns that Branch used to be a member of the band BroZone with his brothers Floyd, John Dory, Spruce and Clay. As the movie opens, brother Floyd is kidnapped. When Poppy and Branch discover this, they jump into action to save Floyd and to reunite with all of the brothers.

As always in family-friendly films, the movie's script has specially-written lines that intentionally reach and engage the grownup moms, dads, and caregivers. Adult appeal is also enhanced thanks to the score's musical performances by such A-listing vocal artists as Justin Timberlake who reunites with his boy band, NSYNC, for the movie. Other established solo vocal artists on the soundtrack include Camila Cabello and Troye Sivan.

TrollsFest Event Poppy Family Kids

Trolls at Universal Studios Hollywood, Universal Orlando

While Trolls Band Together dances into theaters nationwide, both Universal Orlando Resort and Universal Studios Hollywood are celebrating the iconic Trolls enterprise by offering park guests some really fun limited-time experiences for the entire family tying in with DreamWork Animations' new film.

Trolls-inspired Universal Theme Park Specials

Trolls Refreshments

Themed Beverages at Mel's Diner (Hollywood) and Schwab's Pharmacy (Orlando)
  • Tiny Diamond Shake (both Coasts): Vanilla soft serve ice cream blended with Oreo cookies, whipped topping, and topped with edible silver glitter
  • Poppy's Popping Strawberry Shake (Hollywood only): Strawberry soft serve ice cream topped with whipped cream, Blue-Raspberry Pop Rocks candy and flower sprinkles
  • Poppy's Popping Strawberry Lemonade (Orlando only): Strawberry Dole Whip, sweet lemonade, strawberry sorbet, topped with Blue-Raspberry Pop Rocks candy and flower sprinkles
  • BroZone Shake (Orlando only): Vanilla soft serve ice cream with whipped topping and ganished with Blue-Raspberry Pop Rocks and colorful Nerd Candy

Rockin' Trolls Photo Opportunities

Park guests can pose with fan-favorite Trolls Character Poppy as she rocks her dazzling new band attire during special meet and greets inside Universal Studios Florida and Universal Studios Hollywood. Also, interactive sets at Universal Studios Florida and Universal CityWalk Hollywood where guests can digitally interact with characters, along with a dual-sided photo backdrop that gives participants the chance to be on stage with Trolls characters Poppy and Viva

New Trolls Merchandise

Throughout both Universal parks, guests can shop for a specially-curated selection of new Trolls merchandise including a stylish new purse, cute figurines of the characters, apparel and more

Trolls Band Together Mom Movie Review

Kids who are Trolls lovers across a wide age range will definitely appreciate any of the cool toys and parents will love the apparel choices ranging from cozy pajamas and slippers to unisex casual wear and the prettiest girls party dresses for girls that we've discovered on Amazon for you. 

Start your holiday shopping 

Trolls Toys for Girls

DISCLOSURE: We participate in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program that allows our site to earn a bit of compensation (without extra cost to you) for including referral links within our posts to and affiliated sites.