Celebrate Family Health & Fitness Day at Sienna Hills Community

Coming up on September 30th is National Family Health & Fitness Day, which we here at Sienna Hills love to promote! Family Health & Fitness Day comes around every year in September, just in time for the weather in Arizona to drop below 100, and as the weather cools down, it gets easier and easier to get outside and get active! It is even easier when you live in such a beautiful and active community, such as ours. Keep reading to get a few ideas of what you can do to celebrate this day with your family.

Swimming

Take advantage of our fabulous pool and rec center while it’s still warm enough. Swimming is a great way to get exercise in, while also having fun. Play on the splash pad, organize pool games with the neighbors or simply just swim laps. There is an activity for all ages at the pool, so come on down.

Hiking

Sienna Hills Community is located in the heart of the desert, which means tons of great hiking trails all around. Head out to Skyline National Park where there are 27 miles of trails for hiking, walking, biking or even horseback riding! Venture out a little farther from home to Buckeye Hills regional park or Woolsey Park Wilderness Area to find even more great hikes and sights to see. Make sure to bring lots of snacks and water though, as keeping hydrated and fueled is also an important part of Family Health and Fitness Day.

Sports

Along with our great pool, is all the great parks and sports areas in the community. Basketball, soccer, or just playing on the playground. The options are endless at our neighborhood parks. Invite the whole neighborhood out for a fun game of soccer to encourage everyone to get moving on this day.

We can’t wait to see everyone out and about with their families on Sept. 30th for Family Health & Fitness Day, even if it’s just for a short walk around the community. Staying active and teaching our kids good habits is so important for happy, healthy homes. How will you celebrate Family Health & Fitness Day?

Halloween Safety Tips

Halloween is quickly approaching, which means costumes, trick-or-treating, and entertaining friends and family. Whether you’re planning a haunted house-party, trick-or-treating with the kids or a night at home passing out candy, we want to make sure you’re prepared for the night ahead with some Sienna Hills Safety Tips.

Trick-or-Treating

By far, the most popular activity on Halloween is trick-or-treating. Dressing up in your costume and going door-to-door to collect candy is the highlight of every kid’s night. There are many things to consider if you’re thinking about taking your kid out on the 31st, or letting them go with a group of friends. If your child is going out with a group of friends, help them set boundaries and let them know to stick to familiar routes. If you’re taking your child with you, be on the lookout for cars at all times, and stick to sidewalks and well-lit streets.

Selecting the Perfect Costume

Whether they’re going as a princess or a pirate, something to remember when selecting a costume is color. The most popular hours for trick-or-treating are 5:30 to 9:30, which means most trick-or-treating happens in the dark. Try to avoid dark costumes if you can, but if it’s unavoidable, add glow sticks or flashlights to the ensemble. Not only will these keep you and your children visible, it will help you find your way while you’re going house to house throughout the Sienna Hills Community. Another costume hack is substituting a mask for face paint. That way, your child’s view won’t be obstructed. If the costume includes props, be sure they are soft and flexible.

Spending the Night Indoors

If you’ve decided to opt out of the traditional festivities for a night inside, there’s a few things you can do to keep your night as pleasant as possible. First thing to know is, if you’re welcoming the Sienna Hills trick-or-treaters, keep your porch light on. This seems to be the most universal sign for “we’re home and we have candy.” If you’re not welcoming trick-or-treaters, simply flip it off or put up a sign.

A great way to include all kids on this spooky night is with the Teal Pumpkin Project. You can use a teal pumpkin outside your home to symbolize that you have non-food treats, or treats that do not include allergens. If you’d like to learn more you can visit their website.

Halloween is one of the most popular holidays celebrated in America! Following a few easy safety precautions will ensure you an even greater holiday! Hope to see you trick-or-treaters around the Sienna Hills Community!

healthy school lunches

Healthy Back-to-School Lunches

Welcome to a new school year! Back-to-school is an exciting time—make sure your kiddo is fueled with nutritious, yummy food to excel every day.

Michael Pollan, a well-known author and foodie, believes there is no “practice less selfish . . . than preparing something delicious and nourishing for the people you love.” Packing healthy lunches and snacks for your child as he or she sets off to one of Sienna Hills’ top-notch schools can and should be a rewarding experience. Whether you fill a lunchbox each morning or devise a system that works for your schedule (pack the night before? prep everything over the weekend for easy grabbing throughout the week?), realize the tremendous benefit of providing healthy, delicious lunches and snacks for your child’s school day.

Here are some simple ideas to keep lunches interesting, nutritious, well-rounded, and satisfying:

Jazz up the Classics
Classics are easy to make, travel well, and satisfy the body. Keep them interesting by offering a fresh spin on a trusted standby. PB&J . . . why not add bananas, or roll up in a tortilla instead of sliced bread?  Tuna sandwich . . . consider cutting into the shape of a fish, and pair with cheesy Goldfish crackers.

Make It Bento
Organizing food into portioned compartments adds visual interest for a child, and may increase the amount consumed versus wasted. Add color and variety by offering green sugar snap peas, red watermelon, orange baby carrots, and yellow golden delicious apple slices.

Just-right Snacks
Snacks are essential to keeping kids energized and focused throughout the school day. Liven up the presentation of healthy foods—cheese and meat kabobs, no-bake granola bars, sliced apple and peanut butter towers—and know you are providing a tool for success.

For limitless ideas, tips, and healthy recipes for school lunches, check out Pinterest; your kiddo will thank you. Happy eating!

 

Sienna Hills is a planned community of new homes in Buckeye priced from the high $100s. Families enjoy quality schools and spectacular recreation opportunities. Visit us online to learn more about our location in “Arizona’s Biggest Small Town.”

Back-to-School Tips

August means back to school, and for many, school has already begun. Oftentimes the transition from summer to a new school year can be difficult for the whole family. We came up with a few of our favorite back to school tips to share to hopefully make the transition easier and to help make this school year one of the best yet!

Tip #1: Sleep Schedule
Late summer nights can make early school mornings difficult and unpleasant. We’ve found the best way to combat grumpy school-goers is to ease into the transition by starting the new schedule early. It’s going to be much easier if you start a few weeks before school even starts (if you have the time). Start by going to bed early and waking up earlier, as opposed to just getting up at 6am right off the bat. Set timers and alarms, be strict, and even try to implement the schedule on the weekends.

Tip #2: Utilize your weekends
While the weekends are a good time to relax and catch up on some R&R, they are also a great time to prepare for the coming week and get ahead so you don’t fall behind. Plan and prep school lunches and dinners, so that busy mornings are easier and packed school nights run more smoothly. The weekend is also a perfect time to get a jump on the kid’s homework and plan for busy nights, where schoolwork could potentially be put off. Anticipating a hectic schedule will make life a lot easier in the long run.

Tip #3: Organize the Closet
For those who wear uniforms, consider yourselves lucky to be able to skip this step in the morning. Planning the whole week of outfits on Sunday night eliminates your kids standing in front of the closet for 20 minutes screaming “I have nothing to wear.” Another tip is to pack any clothing or equipment that will be needed for after school activities in the morning, to eliminate stress or forgetting anything.

Tip #4: Make a Central Landing Pad
Once you’ve gotten everything together, i.e. lunches, backpack, homework/important papers, after school bags, put them all in one designated place. The worst thing is getting a call from the school that something important that your child needs was left behind. If your family gets in the habit of putting everything in the same place everyday, nothing will get left behind, hopefully!

Tip #5: Communicate
The key to any successful relationship or task is communication. Talk to your kids about their days and how they are feeling about the school year. Talk to the teachers to make sure your child is performing at their best and to make sure no problems are arising. Being involved and up-to-date on your kids’ lives and activities is going to make everything run more smoothly.

We hope that everyone has a fantastic and safe school year. We can’t wait to see all the fun activities and accomplishments the Sienna Hills Community will have over the next year!

best food trucks in buckeye

Step on Up: Best Food Trucks in Buckeye and Beyond

Few things in the food world garner as much excitement as food trucks—and for good reason. Food trucks offer quick, exquisite, and unique fare in an outdoor setting. These kitchens on wheels are taking our culture by storm, and we’re loving it.

Here’s a sampling of the best food trucks in Buckeye and Metro Phoenix:

Buckeye’s Best Food Trucks

Jacky’s Mexican Food
Mouth-watering burritos, carne asada tacos, and shrimp tostadas—reward your taste buds with this authentic Mexican fare. There are rave reviews for Buckeye’s hidden gem!

Harris’ Smokehouse
This establishment offers generations-old family recipes and rubs, melt-in-your-mouth BBQ, delicious sides, and more—all served with a smile—and will have you coming back for more.

Taste of Phoenix

SugarPlum Froyo
Satisfy your sweet tooth and cool down with this invitingly pink food truck offering topping options galore. The combinations are endless—what creation will you make?

The Maine Lobster Lady
Maine lobster in Arizona? You betcha. This best-of-the-best “lobster shack on wheels” has been serving up wicked good lobster rolls for years—earning well-deserved accolades along the way.

Mustache Pretzels
Just need a snack? Why not try a Nutstache—an original hand-rolled soft pretzel drizzled with caramel and sprinkled with nuts? They were awarded Best of the Valley in 2016, and totally deserved it.

Sure, you love to cook in your beautiful kitchen, but sometimes you just need a night out. No matter your hankering, food trucks can satiate your every craving. Luckily, residents of Sienna Hills are conveniently located to partake in the all the food truck craze has to offer, in Buckeye and beyond.

Looking for more? Check out this recent list of the best food trucks in Metro Phoenix.

ways to save money when you move

6 Money-Saving Tips for Moving to Your New Home

You’ve bought a beautiful new home in Sienna Hills—congratulations! Luckily for you, there are plenty of ways to save money when moving day arrives.

Here are 6 money-saving tips for moving that will make the process a breeze:

  1. Make a budget: This all-important (and all-too-often overlooked) first step helps you determine and plan for the inevitable expenses associated with moving and also keeps you on track once the process begins.
  2. Downsize and declutter: Simply put, the more you have, the more you have to move (and therefore, the more it will cost). Go through your home and place every item in one of four categories: keep, toss, donate, or sell. Who knows, you may even make some money! If you don’t know where to start, check out The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up for some great pointers.
  3. Shop around: Whether you pack and move yourself or hire a moving company, you’ll want to make some calls or surf the web to get the best deal available. Be sure to read the fine print and make sure you’re comparing apples to apples.  
  4. Pack it right: You’ve pared down your items—now it’s time to start packing. Organization is key. Be sure to group items as it makes sense to you, don’t overload boxes too heavily, and label everything. Remember: time is money, so make it easy on yourself and make good use of a Sharpie.
  5. Easy does it: Moving day is here! The way you load your moving truck makes a big difference in keeping your items safe and your efficiency high. After all, it’s more expensive to replace broken items than to keep them safe in the first place.
  6. Embrace the change: Be sure to change your address with USPS. As you’re settling in to your new home, watch the mail for great money-saving coupons available for local services and products in your new place.

 

Ensure your moving experience is a positive one and free up your time and money to enjoy all the Sienna Hills community has to offer.

Sienna Hills is a planned community of new homes in Buckeye priced from the high $100s. Visit us online to learn more about our location in “Arizona’s Biggest Small Town.”

National Ice Cream Day!

National Ice Cream Day is coming up on July 16th and what better way to beat this Arizona heat than with a nice scoop (or two or three) of delicious ice cream! We are laying out some of our favorite places around the valley to find that sweet treat you are craving.

Old Time

MacAlpine’s Soda Fountain (Downtown Phoenix)

Craving a root beer float? Or any kind of soda fountain classic? Then you need to head over to MacAlpine’s Diner & Soda Fountain. Located in downtown Phoenix, this place takes you right back to the 50’s.

 

Sugar Bowl (Old Town Scottsdale)

With its bright pink exterior, this place is hard to miss in the heart of Old Town Scottsdale. They have everything you would want from classic sundaes and malts to single scoops of your favorite flavors.

New Time

Creamistry (Scottsdale Waterfront)

Creamistry takes picking your own flavor of ice cream to the next level. This made to order ice cream shop freezes your mixture right in front of you with liquid nitrogen for a fun and delicious experience.

Below Freezing (Thai Rolled Ice Cream) (19th Ave & Union Hills)

This unique way to eat your ice cream comes all the way from Asia. These places are popping up all over the valley and are putting a new spin on how to eat ice cream. They take the cream and all the ingredients for your flavor, mix them together and flatten them out on a cold surface. Next, they roll the mixture into 5 to 6 rolls and place it in the cup! Can you say delicious!

Classics

Churn (Downtown Phoenix)

With tons of unique flavor options, multiple cone styles and even the option for ice cream sandwiches, this place just might be our favorite. Even better, they use fresh ingredients and no additives so you know you’re making a somewhat healthy choice.

Froyo

Dream Swirl (Goodyear)

A healthier, lighter version of ice cream, frozen yogurt is still very popular. There are tons of different places to go, but Dream Swirl is just 15 minutes down the road from Sienna Hills Community and has great flavors.

 

Unexpected

The Frozen Monkey (Goodyear)

Not ice cream, but still a delicious frozen treat, The Frozen Monkey specializes in all things shaved ice. With tons of delicious flavors you are sure to find a combination that you love.

 

things to do in summer in Buckeye

Get Ready for Family Fun: Things to Do in Buckeye This Summer

Summer. Is. Here. And you’re in luck—there are so many things to do this summer in Buckeye.  Your days will likely be filled with adventurous outdoor activities at the Sienna Hills’ community pool, parks, and surrounding open spaces, but when you’re ready for a change of pace, take advantage of the plethora of opportunities awaiting you.

Here is a list of family activities to get you started this summer:

Salt River Tubing – May 1–September 4   9:00 a.m.–6:30 p.m.  (Maricopa County)
The pool at Sienna Hills is an everyday oasis, but when you’re searching for something to shake up the routine, an inner tube may be the answer. Enjoy a cool, relaxing float down the Lower Salt River, a Phoenix summertime tradition.

Desert Botanical Garden—Flashlight Tours – Thursdays & Saturdays, May 27–September 2  7:00–9:30 p.m.  (Phoenix)
Grab a flashlight and explore the sensory adventures awaiting you on this self-guided tour. Experience unique plant and animal nightlife, an activity perfect for the whole family.

Harkins Theatres—Summer Movie Fun – May 29–August 4   9:45 a.m.  (Phoenix metro)
Take a break from the heat and enjoy a kid-friendly weekly movie event all summer long. This super-affordable, first-come, first-serve activity showcases G- and PG-rated movies and is sure to please.

Old Fashioned Independence Day Celebration – Tuesday, July 4    6:00–9:30 p.m.  (Buckeye)
Celebrate our nation’s birthday with flair. Head over to Youngker High School for a night of family fun activities, all-American eats and treats, and a can’t-miss spectacular fireworks show.

Phoenix Zoo—Winter in July – Saturday, July 15   (Phoenix)
Blizzards, squirt guns, and snowmen, oh my! Beat the heat and chill out with wild animals at the zoo-turned-winter wonderland, complete with icy treats and a Cool Zone.

Also be sure to take advantage of free days at local museums and check out free concerts and movies in the parks throughout the city. Fortunately, residents of Sienna Hills are perfectly located to take in all the fun family activities in and near Buckeye. Explore the mecca of things to do in summer awaiting your discovery. What are you waiting for?

Celebrating Father’s Day in the Valley

Father’s Day is just around the corner, and we can’t wait to celebrate our dads who do so much for us every day! There are so many fun activities around the valley for Dads, we thought we would share a few of our favorite places to go. We hope everyone has a fun, safe and enjoyable Father’s Day!

Baseball Game: Baseball season is in full swing and there is no better way to spend a summer day with Dad than at the ballpark! Unfortunately, there aren’t any home games the weekend of Father’s Day, but visit the Diamondbacks website to find a day that works for you.

Botanical Gardens: During the summer months, the Desert Botanical Gardens is offering flashlight tours during the evening, which could be a fun activity to do the night before Father’s Day, plus all dads get FREE admission.

Lunch/Dinner at a local Brewery: There are so many great breweries around the Phoenix area, so if your dad is a big beer lover, Father’s Day is the perfect time to explore a new place. A few options closer to home in Buckeye include, Saddle Mountain Brewing Company, The Litchfield Taproom and 8-Bit Aleworks.

Top Golf: Located near the Talking Stick Resort (a great place for a staycation might we add), this is a fun activity for the whole family. A multi-level driving range that has endless options for interactive golf games plus amazing food, just screams Father’s Day.

Pool Day: If you want a more relaxed Father’s Day, a great option would be a day by our lovely Sienna Hills Community pool! Enjoy the pool and your family!

Whatever you decide to do, make sure you spend it with family. We would love to know what Father’s Day plans you may have. Share them with us on our Sienna Hills Facebook page!

summer activities for kids in buckeye

Can’t-Miss Summer Activities and Camps in Buckeye

Get ready, summer is just around the corner! For residents at Sienna Hills, the awesome community pool and parks provide all-day fun, but check out these enriching summer activities for kids in Buckeye and make this break from school one your kids will never forget. With so much to do in Buckeye, which summer activity will you choose?

City of Buckeye – Youth Summer Camps
Stay sharp over break and learn something new, explore STEM activities, make crafts, play games, master cooking projects, and so much more!

Camp Zoo
This can’t-miss learning adventure at the Phoenix Zoo offers up-close animal encounters, behind-the-scenes experiences, hands-on activities and games, and in-depth investigations your child will remember for years to come.

The Goddard School Summer Camps
If you’ve got a kindergartner through 5th grader, enrich his or her summer experience with STEAM-based activities offered at The Goddard School. Day camp activities include cooking, game play, performing, critical-thinking puzzle solving, and much more.

Buckeye Public Library – Summer Reading Program and Events
All branches of the library offer free events throughout the summer to keep kids engaged and always learning. Check out the events calendar for a fun activity near you, and be sure to sign up for the always-exciting summer reading program.

Anderson Institute of Music & Performing Arts (AIM)
Whether it’s through music or theater, indulge the performer in your family with camps designed to unleash his or her potential.

For residents of Sienna Hills, enjoying life is a way of life. After all, its prime location affords opportunities to hike in nature or take advantage of Buckeye’s bustling activity lineup. So get out there and experience it all! Hello summer!!

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