Archives for the month of: October, 2010

Trick or Treat! The Halloween season comes to a close after a month of many fun festivities, Wag-O-Ween, Hallo-Green, National Costume Swap Day Party and many contests. The costume recycling was a great sucess with a huge load of Halloween costumes was delivered to St. Joseph’s Home for Children, thank you to everyone for your generous donations.  Now we face lots of un-decorating, bats, birds, ghosts, spooky things all need to come down this week. There are cobwebs everywhere.

Kate, Stephanie and Annette, three of Totally Kids weekend team pose in their Halloween attire.

This pooch decked out as a witch, stops by to take a test drive on her way back for a photo session with the Wag-O-Ween photographer, Josh P. Roberts.

Josh and Osa sporting a Twins jersey join Stephanie for Wag-O-Ween. Woof!

These pretty little Peacocks won everyone’s vote for Best in Show for costumes, and    their is a talented mother behind them. No, not hiding behind them, she made the costumes.


Gourmet Mom on the Go will show you how to treat your family to these ghostly ghostly pancakes. Take a good look at them and don’t you agree, Halloweens a Scream?

She’s no monster but surely can dash.  After running around the store all day, up and down ladders hanging pictures, constantly arranging and rearranging furniture for vinettes and displays, it was off to serious running along the Mississippi River almost every evening after a full day’s work. Today was the test of all her dedicated training. At mile post 8 Megan gracefully sailed past us with her beautiful smile in what appeared to be just another lovely Minnesota crisp fall morning walk in the park, not a gruling marathon run. We are so proud of Megan, a real winner.

The Monster Dash is one of four big  races sponsered by Team Ortho each quarter to raise money for research. Every year Team Ortho donates money to the Shriner’s Hospital, the Orthopaedic Trauma Association and the Minneapolis Medical Research Foundation. All of which have received a portion of nearly $90,000 over the last three years.

These high-quality races throughout the year to keep people active.” Staying active is one of the best defenses against orthopaedic injuries, to areas like knees, hips, and the spine. Exercise increases or maintains your bone density; as a result you may be able to better avoid injury in the future. Earn some “bones” in the race Volunteer Incentive Program.


Monster Food

Dash to the kitchen and make monster brownies.

Monster Eyeballs Anyone?

You’ll need a laboratory to create these tasty monsters with edible googly eyes.


Make and shake these with the litle monsters in your life.


What goes “Ha-ha-ha . . . THUD!” A monster laughing his head off!

Who: You and all of your friends, especially the ones that are on @twitter.

What: Come to Twin Cities Got Blood? Tweetup. There is no conference or speaker or discussion. Just come and hang out. Bring business cards, don’t bring business cards, it doesn’t matter. Just show up, meet new friends and have fun! You give the blood – we give the “Blood”y Marys & Mimosas (virgin for this event), coffee, oj, pastries and fruit. All donors will receive a $15.00 Gift Card.

When: Saturday, November 20th 2010 @ 10A.M – 3P.M.

Why: Save Lives and have fun. Please tweet all of your friends!

MAKE AN APPOINTMENT November 20, 2010 from 10AM – 3PM

It always helps us to know in advance when you are coming in to make a donation.

All donors will receive a $15.00 Totally Kids Gift Card after they have given their blood. Yes, even employees! The Gift Card makes a super holiday gift!



Be sure to drink plenty of fluids the day of your donation.

Wear Something Comfortable

Wear clothing with sleeves that can easily be rolled up above the elbow.

Maintain a Healthy Level of Iron in Your Diet Before Donating

If possible, include iron-rich foods in your diet, especially in the weeks before your donation.

Blood Donation Process

Bring a List of Medications You Are Taking

We will need to know about any prescription and/or over the counter medications that may be in your system.

Blood Donation Process

Bring an ID

Please bring either your donor card, driver’s license or two other forms of identification.

Bring a Friend

Bring along a friend, so that you may both enjoy the benefits of giving blood.


Blood donation is a simple and very safe procedure so there is nothing to worry about.

Or as Annie says, “Give Blood – Starve a Mosquito!”

Need Blood?

Vampire Brew

Halloween Safety Tips For Dogs

1. Avoid chocolate and other candy.  Make sure to keep any candy that you are going to hand out safely hidden from your dog. Notify kids in the house to put their candy bags away. Chocolate is a big no-no for dogs as it contains theobromine, which their bodies cannot properly digest. The darker the chocolate, the worse it can be. Small amounts are typically not lethal, so if he does snag a bite don’t freak out. But also don’t let it happen.

Candy wrappers, tinfoil, and other dangers can be found in candy bags, so keep your dog safe by putting these away.

2. Put your dog in a safe place, either a separate room or his crate, when the trick-or-treaters are coming by. You should not let him be at the door to greet the kids. Costumes, commotion, and loud noises will stress him out and can cause problems ranging from stress to aggression.

3. Don’t leave your dog around kids without supervision. The erratic movements and loud, startling noises can really upset him. Add in a scary costume and you have a formula for disaster.

4. Be careful about placement of electrical cords for decorations. If your puppy or dog chews on these, trouble will follow. Arrange them for safety and use a bitter apple spray on the cord to keep pets at bay.

5. Don’t leave candles unattended. Carved pumpkins look great with a candle burning inside them, but they can be tipped over. They can also be investigated by curious pets which can lead to burns or worse.

6. Make sure that your dog’s costume is the right fit. Don’t put him in a costume that is too small or tight. Also check for loose ends that could be chewed on and swallowed or cause other problems. If your dog hates having the costume on be a friend to him and take the costume off.

7. Watch out when the door is open. If your dog is not secured in another room or in his crate then he might bolt out the door. With all the activity outside it may be even harder to get him back in.

8. Walk your dog before the festivities begin – all those costumes can be scary.

9. If the noise is bothering him, try adding background sounds (radio, TV) to distract him from the neighborhood hubbub.

10. Be careful when out walking your dog after Halloween – loose candy can be found and he may grab a big piece if he sees it before you do.

11. Think twice about taking him out with your family to trick or treat. There’s a lot of costumes and commotion which can put any dog on edge. He might be happier at home.

12. Tell kids the dangers of the treats and to not feed the dog any.

13. Be firm. Don’t let anybody who wants to greet your dog just to be polite. Be willing to say “no thanks” if your dog is feeling anxious or if the other person (perhaps an excited, sugar filled child) is approaching inappropriately.

14. If you take your dog with you, do not take him up to a stranger’s door – the resident dog may not take kindly to that and it could end up being a bummer. Someone should wait at the end of the driveway with the dog.

15. Do not leave your dog outside. There are plenty of rumors that dogs are taunted and teased, that gates are opened, and that candy is tossed in yards. It’s unlikely that lots of kids are running around causing harm to dogs on Halloween night, but the commotion is enough to unnerve your dog and it is conceivable that a youngster might toss a treat toward your dog with the best of intentions but bad results.

It may seem like a lot, but the truth is that Halloween is a fun time for parents and kids and can easily be fun for dogs too. Many dogs enjoy being the center of attention and will tolerate wearing a costume (which we get a huge kick out of!) to do so. Keep an eye out for the dangers of candy, keep your dog secure in your house, and be ready to ward off over excited kids and all will be well. Happy Halloween.


Halloween Treats For People

                Pupcakes recipe from Gourmet Mom On the Go.

Enter the Canine Costume Contest!

Send in your best dog gone photo and you could  be the winner…. If there is a tale to go with the pic, all the better.

Bring your people down to the Wag-O-Ween Party     October 23

All Costumed Families with Their Costumed Pets will Receive a FREE $5.00 Gift Card!

(All pets must  be on leashes during the party please!)

Free Professional Photographer for Furry Family Fotos.

Hot Cider, Treats, Dog Biscuits, Games & Prizes for the Whole Family!

No Tail Wagging Pets? No Problem! Bring Your Favorite Stuffed Animal and Dress Up

5% of All Proceeds Donated to the MARS*
*Midwest Animal Rescue & Services

Do not let your people miss out on the fun. You can have them get more de-”tails” here.


Halloween Treats for People.


How much candy can you fit into a crisp ghostly white percale environmentally friendly pillowcase and how many houses with steep steps do you have to run up to and shout out “trick or treat” to fill it?

At our house, Bob was the revered king of Halloween, never stuffing one, but close to almost two pillowcases full of  candy year after year. Really no one else even needed to bother putting on a costume and venturing out on a chilly Halloween night as Bob brought home enough candy to keep the entire neighborhood in candy until the following Halloween. Not the case though, the challenge was on with everyone trying to top Bob’s record. This competition continued year after year and always with the same results, the Candy King was Bob. Looking back, Bob was the only one big and strong enough to carry home a nine pound bag filled with the spoils of Trick or Treating.

Then, the worst thing happened every year the day after Halloween. The mountains of candy would always disappear. Our cruel father would take the candy and donate it to the orphanage downtown.

Over the years we all came to forgive Dad from robbing us of weeks of sugar highs and sparing us from future trips to the dentist with rotting teeth. Dad was on to something and today there are others sharing his belief that there is a limit to after Halloween candy dilemma.

Phillip Done, author of Close Encounters of the Third-Grade Kind: Thoughts on Teacherhood,” suggests having the Candy Fairy visit your kids. Have your kids write a letter to her and leave most of their candy out before they go to bed at night. She’ll take the candy (for children who couldn’t go trick-or-treating) and leave your kids a gift. For parents, that could be a fair and fun trade. There is also the The Halloween Candy Buy-Back Program!

Quite possibly some of us may have found special spots to stash a few favorite goodies. Don’t tell Dad, Please…

What were your favorite Halloween candies as a kid? Do you remember any of these oldies but goodies? And there’s nothing like an old pillowcase – sturdy, voluminous, , and environmentally conscious – to hold your epic stash. But you must have wondered – exactly how much could you possibly collect i


Rock Candy? Not quite, but No Time for Flashcards will show you how to create these rock Jack-O-Lanterns.

Dig up some scary bones with Frugal Family Fun. Sorry, you’ll have to resist gnawing on these bones.


These Candy Corn Cookies you CAN eat!


What do birds give out on Halloween?  Tweets.

Devon’s Dogs

You may recall from previous posts,  that our Devon, aka Mrs. B., is a dedicated purple jersey wearing, rather superstitious Vikings fan. (she believes that she possesses some magic powers – or that her dogs do) We will not talk about the Jets game, it is over and done with. From this photo, it looks like her dogs also share a thing for football. Well, maybe they don’t always share that football, but like the game.

Wags and Tales Bio:

Hi! My name is Brandi, and this is my fur brother Brutus. (You can tell which one I am; I’m wearing the pink collar.) We love to take walks, play fetch and snuggle. I lived at my house all alone, until my humans adopted Brutus from the MN Boxer Rescue. I don’t know what I did without him! He has taught me how to snuggle and play like a good dog. I have taught him how to chew on things we are not supposed to! It’s a win win situation for me. We also have some creatures that live with us called “cats.” I have taught Brutus how not to eat them, and he has taught me how to chase them, but again, we do not eat them, that is not allowed.  Sometimes it gets really crazy at our house! But we love to love our humans.  It is our most favorite thing to do! We snuggle up and go to sleep as soon as they sit down on the couch. Well, my human is telling me its time to go on a walk, (another one of my favorite things to do), but I am sure you will hear from me again! Bye!!!!

If you have a special pooch and would like to share any tales, we would be pleased to post it here on Wednesday’s Wags and Tales. Send photos and stories to

SAVE THE DATE: Calling All Dogs! Bring your people to the Wag-O-Ween Party Saturday, October 23 from 11AM to 4PM. There will be hot cider, games, prizes, dog biscuits, free furry fotos and fun times.

Totally Kids | 7876 Portland Avenue South | Bloomington | MN | one mile from the Mall of America | 952-881-2425


Closing time, actually after closing time, the door was locked, lights turned off, sales team had all gone home, when Annie left her office to check out the loud banging sound coming from the front door. Even though it was after store hours, in the Nordstrom tradition, our GM, Annie, welcomed in the last guests of the day. Very nice of you Annie.

Standing outside were two men and a sweet little girl tapping and knocking on the front door. Eric, Jada’s dad was looking for beds and told us he had his eye on a race car bed, but there would be some jealousy issues bringing that bed home when it would not be for Jada. No new bed for that family on Sunday, but 6 year old Jana did go home ready for Halloween with a Policewoman costume.  Eric was surprised with his daughter’s selection telling us that she has always been a princess sort of a girl.

The Totally Kids team prides itself on exceptional customer service. So much can be learned from Nordstrom where they developed  management principles to achieving its #1 status for customer service in America, which are discussed in Robert Spector’s book, The Nordstrom Way (2005) :

  • Provide your customer with choices
  • Create an inviting place for your customers
  • Hire nice, motivated people
  • Empower employees to take ownership
  • Dump the rules (tear down barriers to customer service)
  • Commit 100% to customer service

Choices? Does Totally Kids ever provide customers with choices!  You’ll see when you visit If for some reason what you are dreaming of or searching for is not found,  there are knowledgeable personal shoppers and talented interior designers to assist you.

Inviting place? Stop in and you be the judge. Most adults comment over and over, “oh I wish that I had that when I was a child”.  Then, the kids, they have a real “kids in a toy store” experience, so good that many of them leave crying when their mean parents tell them it’s time to go home. Hot tip: do not leave the store without a trip to the restroom.

Nice? Our team could all be rated “Minnesota Nice” and motivated to help families have a pleasant experience on their visit to Totally Kids.

Ownership is brilliantly demonstrated with the ongoing efforts of Stephanie and Megan’s talent in displays and merchandising creating eye candy for all guests. Leaving the store with toys colorfully gift wrapped for Free puts a smile everyone’s face.

Commit 100% to customer service? Behind the scenes, during the week our customer care manager extraordinaire, Lisa works with factories, shipping companies and customers.  Her attention to detail and organizational skills maintains a very well oiled customer service machine.


Halloween Food Ideas:

How about some sweet looking candy corn pizza?

Jack O Veggies Healthy Halloween Here.

Monster Cup Cakes from My little Mochi.


Baby Food Jar Votives by Skip to My Lou


How does a Jack-O-Lantern stop smoking? A: He wears a…pumpkin patch.