My First Kia Press Trip Experience #TheNewKia #KiaFamily

My First Kia Press Trip Experience

Two weeks ago I was in San Diego for the first time with Kia Motors of America. It was my very first press trip with a car company, and I was beyond excited, but I was also very nervous. The flight out was pretty cool, I ended up with a seat with no one in the middle seat. It was cloudy and chilly the entire time we were in San Diego, but fun was on the agenda.

Disclosure: Kia invited me to a blogger event to learn about their eco-dynamic line of cars. Any opinions expressed are my own.

Our hotel for the event was the Hard Rock San Diego. I walked in the there was a special check in table for Kia Influencers in the lobby area. Someone grabbed my bag immediately while I was checking in with the Kia Team. I got all the details about the event and found out a bit about the events of the day. I headed up to my room and I was floored. Check out my mini room tour below.

Isn’t it simply amazing? I just loved this room. It was so spacious and roomy, and the best part is the Hard Rock added curtains so I could section off the room when it was time to sleep at night. I felt like a complete rock star.

The Hospitality Suite Was Rocking

Photo Credit: Cielo Roth Photography
Photo Credit: Cielo Roth Photography
Photo Credit: Cielo Roth Photography

The Hospitality Suite was always stocked with lots to eat and plenty of cool things to do. I loved that Kia went above and beyond to accommodate those with food allergies. I’m allergic to onions, and I never had to guess what I could or couldn’t eat. Each dish had a label for not only my onion allergy, but gluten, dairy, and if you needed something specific the Kia Team was always on hand to help.

Photo Credit: Cielo Roth Photography

Although I’m not crafty I spent some time in the craft room trying to decorate a guitar with my blogger buddy Jay and another blogger. They did a much better job that I did of course. LOL.

Got Changed for a Night Out on the Town

After hanging out in the hospitality suite, I changed and headed to the lobby to get ready for dinner that night. While in the lobby we socialized and met a few of the other influencers attending the event.

Sneak Peek at the Stinger

The brand new 2018 Kia Stinger was sitting in the lobby for people to admire during the event. It’s such an amazing car. I can’t wait to learn more about this beauty. According to insiders, this baby can reach speeds of up to 167 mph.

Night One in San Diego

The night started with a very funny ride in a Pedicab to the restaurant for dinner that night. We were in the heart of the Gaslamp district, and our meal for the night was a special tasting curated by one of the Kia reps John.

Special drinks were featured on the menu that was specific to certain time periods. I tried three of the five drink specials and a glass of local wine.

A Taste of San Diego

I tried a few of the options for dinner, my favorite was the Greek Salad. Who knew roasted tomatoes tasted so good. I even went back for seconds. The big winner at my booth for the night though were the fries. They were simply delicious. After dinner, we headed back to the hotel in another pedicab and spent a few hours in the hospitality suite just relaxing and chatting with other bloggers.

Day Two Ride & Drive

Day two we were up early for breakfast then a Kia Brand Immersion presentation. After learning about the Kia brand and three cars from the eco-dynamic line, we headed out for a ride around San Diego.

Free Krispy Kreme

There was talk about free donuts leading up to the event and our first stop on the list of places that Kia recommended was Kia. We walked in and was told to order anything we wanted. I tried a new donut on the menu and of course a regular glazed donut. It was delicious.

Lunch at Tin Fish

Lunch was delicious but I was still full from breakfast and donuts that I didn’t get to really enjoy much of my lunch that day. It was however very delicious.

Closing Night

Photo Credit: Cielo Roth Photography
Photo Credit: Cielo Roth Photography
Photo Credit: Cielo Roth Photography

Karokee was the reason why I was so scared for this event. I thought I would be teriffed to participate. I didn’t want to feel left out and was hoping there was no pressure. The final photo sums up how I felt the whole night. I sang so many amazing songs from that seat. I danced, and waved my hands in the air. I had loads of fun. I even backed Jay up on the stage for “I Love Rock & Roll”. It was nothing I thought it would be and I wish all events has killer Karokee with a live band. It was so much fun and a great way for everyone to get know each other. Sadly it was on the last night, but so much fun.

Goodbye San Diego

The last day arrived and it was time to say good-bye to San Diego. I headed to breakfast with Jay and we ran into Afropolitan Mom, so we joined her for breakfast before getting on the shuttle and heading to the airport.

Photo Credit: Cielo Roth Photography
Photo Credit: Cielo Roth Photography

I had a blast at #TheNewKia event. Everyone was amazing. It was great meeting and hanging out with influencers on all kinds of platforms. It was easily one of my favorite press trips of all time, and I can’t wait to party with my new Kia family again.

 

 

Five Reasons the Kia Sedona Is Perfect for Big Families #DriveKia #DriveShop

Five Reasons the Kia Sedona Is Perfect for Big Families

Last month my family and I had the opportunity to test drive the 2016 Kia Sedona SXL for a week thanks to Drive Shop and Kia.  It wasn’t our first time with the Sedona and it was just as amazing as it was the first time we drove it around town.  We have a big family, it’s six of us, so we need a lot of space, dependability, and style and that’s just what the Kia Sedona delivers and so much more.  I wanted to share with my readers five reasons the Kia Sedona is perfect for big families like mines.

2016 Kia Sedona

Whenever we’re driving in the Sedona people always admire the car, our family and friends shared lots of compliments about the car when we were around them in the car and it was perfect for everything we did the week we had it.

1. It’s Great for Road Trips

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The 2016 Kia Sedona SXL is perfect for road trips with big families because everyone gets to have their own space.  We loved that the car had captain chairs in the middle rows for the older kids and two car seats fit perfectly in the back row for our two younger kids.  Kia must have considered road trips when designing the car since it averages 22 MPG on the highway.  My husband was able to get to and from work for a week and we traveled to Dutch Wonderland in Lancaster, PA with one tank of gas.

2. It Has Lots of Space

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Kia Sorento (36)

Traveling with six people can be very tricky.  While most cars have lots of internal space for it’s passengers they usually achieve it by skimping on trunk space. That’s not the case with the Kia Sedona SXL.  It had more than enough space for all six of us to relax comfortably and trunk space to fit suitcases for six when we were traveling or groceries for two weeks for our family of six with lots of space to spare.  The Sedona offers a very deep trunk so you can really stack and pile your belongings into the car.

3. It’s Built for a Comfortable Ride

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Kia Sorento (28)

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I don’t get to enjoy my favorite feature of the Kia Sedona often but when I do it’s the best place to sit in the car.  Even better there are two spots like it.  The lounge seating in the second row is heaven and it’s perfect for stretching out and relaxing on your rides, whether it’s long or short.  Whenever we have the Sedona I love when I get to sit in one of those seats and ride around with my feet up.  My husband always brags about how much his co-workers ride with him on their lunch break, just to sit in the lounge seats.  There’s even built in screens you can pull down to block out the sun for even more comfort.  The driver and front passenger seats both feature heated and vented seats for staying warm in the winter and cool in the summer.  This particular model even had a heated steering wheel.

4. Top Safety Features

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Kia Sorento (10)

When we put our children in any car, their safety is our first concern.  Starting with proper anchors for latching our car seats securely in the car to brakes and air bags, Kia has always impressed us with their safety features.  This model has full length side curtain airbags giving us some added peace of mind in case of the unthinkable. Brake assist and traction control helps when we have to drive in the rain or on sleek roads in Baltimore.  I’ve been impressed with the headlights when we have to do night driving because it offers such a clear path of vision so we can always see what’s coming up in front of us.  Lane departure warning also helps make sure you safely switch lanes.  Simply put when we step into this car it felt like we were in a bubble of protection.

5. Lots of Great Upgrades to Choose From

 

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Kia Sorento (13)

When shopping for your new car there are so many things to consider.  When we were shopping for our last car we needed to find something with entertainment options for the kids, we were lucky to find our mini-van with a television installed.  Our loaner Kia Sedona was the top of the line model with all the bell and whistles.  You can choose to add those features to the car or stick with the standard version.  The 2016 Kia Sedona has a MSRP of $39,900, and you can add the extra features like the ones in the model we test drove and that MSRP for that car is $43,795.

Bonus Likes:

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With four kids and two adults we need a lot of charging ports in the car, and the Kia Sedona delivers on that to the max.  In addition to the charging ports in the front there are also spots in the middle and rear rows of the car so everyone can be connected.

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Kia Sorento (29)

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Cup holders don’t seem like a big deal but when you have a big family you need to have a lot in the car for long trips.  The Sedona had lots and lots of cup holders for our family.  Making it perfect for when we’re all in the car traveling together.

Finally I can’t end without adding the fabulous Kia warranty.  The Kia 10-year/100,000 mile warranty program* consists of: 10-year/100,000 mile limited powertrain warranty. 5-year/60,000 mile limited basic warranty. 5-year/100,000 mile limited anti-perforation warranty.  To learn more about the 2016 Kia Sedona and all their other cars visit their website www.kia.com.

Our Holidays with the Kia Sorento #DriveKia #DriveShop

Our Holidays with the Kia Sorento

After the week we spent riding around in the 2016 Kia Sorento, I do believe that if Santa’s sleigh was a car, it would surely be the 2016 Kia Sorento.  My family and I had the luxury of riding around in the Sorento for a week.  Thanks to Kia and DriveShop for the loaner for a week.  There are so many wonderful things I could say about this car, the most important one is how in one week our whole family became huge fans of Kia.

Kia Sorento Review

I’ve been sold on Kia since we had the opportunity to test drive the Kia Sedona last year.  It was an amazing car that was perfect for our family and I’ve shared with my husband on multiple occasions why I think it should be our next car purchase.  We were all excited about having the car for a week during the holidays, the weather was warm however it rained the entire time we had the car.  We were hoping to travel to Hershey but the constant rain made it impossible. That however didn’t stop us from enjoying the car.

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Lighted Foot Board

One cool feature of the car was the lighted foot board, once it got dark out, to help you see where you were getting into the car, the foot board turned red.  I never had to worry about where to step.

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Kia Sorento (7)

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Kia Sorento (2)

The trunk was very roomy and held quite a few of our family’s Christmas gifts even when we were using one of the rear seats in the car.

There’s much more space when the rear seats are folded down.  When they are up there wasn’t much space, enough to hold a few items.  Our family of six needs as much space as possible so we prefer a bigger trunk.  Despite the trunk size all of us were able to ride comfortably in the car whenever we were traveling in it.

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Kia Sorento (5)

Kia Sorento (4)

Everyone were able to sit comfortably in the Sorento when we took it out around Baltimore.  When we needed more trunk space we folded down one of the rear seats and had one of the kids sit back there.  If we didn’t need trunk space we had two kids sit in the rear section and two in the middle row seats.

The interior of this car had a beautiful two-tone leather that made it look like a million bucks.  Personally we wouldn’t get the lighter cream color because, well kids are messy.  With the rain and mud I was constantly trying to wipe down seats.  If you don’t have kids or your kids are older this color combination may work great.  There were lots and lots of cup holders in the car.  This is another feature that may not seem like a big deal but trust me it really does make a big difference.

Technology was another big plus in this car, starting with ample usb ports for all your charging cables.  There were also quite a few car charger plugs as well as a center console that gave the driver ultimate control.  The parking assist on Kia is mind blowing and while it takes hubby a day or two to get accustomed to using, by the end of our week loan he’s a pro at trusting the car’s system.  It’s always hard to go back to our everyday car after we spend a week with the newest and best on the market.

I just love this moon roof in this @kiamotorsusa Sedona. #driveshop #drivekia

A photo posted by Nickida Stephens (@nostephens) on

We loved the moon roof in this car, it covered almost the entire length of the car.  The only downside was with all the rain we didn’t get to enjoy it on a sunny day.  I should also note that if you happen to be absent minded at times the Kia Sorento is here to help.  My husband had opened the roof one day when before it started raining.  Once he got home and parked, the car immediately alerted him the roof was opened and needed to be closed.

2016 Kia Sorento (22)

Privacy is key to anyone and the Kia Sorento has shades on the rear windows.  Use them to relax while riding in the car, to block out the sun or to just keep out the prying eyes.

2016 Kia Sorento (4)

We haven’t had a Kia yet that people didn’t give us compliments on, and it was no different with the Kia Sorento.  Everywhere we went people complimented us on how nice the car was.  We had quite a few inquires from strangers about the car and what features we loved about it.  This is another great car from Kia and I personally can’t wait to see what else they come up with in the future.  I’m sure it’s going to be fabulous.

Our loaner was the 2016 Kia Sorento SXL AWD and the MSRP is $46,495, however the starting base model of the Sorento has a MSRP of $25,100.  To learn more about this and other Kia Motors cars visit them online – www.kia.com

Prepping for Back to School In Style with the Kia Sedona

Prepping for Back to School In Style with the Kia Sedona

I am honestly ashamed at myself for how long I waited to start getting the kids ready for back to school.  This year our toddler attended Summer School through the Extended School Year Program due to his Autism.  I think I was so focused on helping him have a smooth summer session that I didn’t realize that summer was coming to an end, and I didn’t have the kid’s school supplies taken care of as yet.  Usually I would coupon and get the basic like crayons, pencils, folders, and notebooks.  This year I didn’t get any of that done during the summer, so I found myself running around town a week before school started, trying to find the best deals around.

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Luckily for us we were test driving the 2015 Kia Sedona SX-L that week, so running errands and getting around town was a breeze and the kids loved trying out the new car.  There are so many reasons I could share about why this is the perfect family car, or at least it was for us.  We had a serious case of car envy when it was time for this beauty to be picked up.

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A good car for our family of six needs a lot of trunk space and when you’re shopping for three kids for school you need all the trunk space you can get.  The Kia Sedona had more than enough trunk space for all our shopping needs.  We were able to fit groceries for two weeks in the truck with ease.  Even when we decided on a last-minute trip to the beach for a family outing the trunk held all the food for seventeen people.

Kia Sorento (35)

Kia Sorento (37)

These seats also fold down so if you need extra room for bigger items then you can have it.  The captain’s chairs slide forward giving  you lots of space.  Families moving children into college dorms or apartments would love having the space in the trunk because it would be perfect to fit all those dorm essentials.  Plus when you’re done putting everything in, just close with the push of a button.

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Kia Sorento (27)

Kia Sorento (20)

We didn’t have to stress about extra long shopping days with the kids because the first class lounge seating provided the ultimate level or comfort and style when traveling.  I wanted to ride in those seats just to feel like I was being chauffeured around town.  Even when the chairs were in lounging position passengers in the third row still had enough space to feel comfortable.

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Although my picture doesn’t do it justice there are dual sunroof on this car.  I was quite impressed with that feature since it allowed us to give the kids the chance to have the rear one open at night for gazing at stars.  My husband spent the most time with the car since he would drive it to work, he told me that he loved the lights when driving at night.  So one night after dinner we jumped in the car and headed out for a late night drive and I have to say the lights were very bright, allowing us to take the long way home.  You know the scenic route that doesn’t have much lights.  We would usually only travel on those roads during daylight hours but we were able to master those roads just like we normally would.  Those front projection fog lights with LED positioning lamps do make night travel safer.

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For a third row these seats are pretty roomy.  We had two car seats back here and one of the kids could easily sit in the middle of both car seats.  I know there is a lot of room back there because when I attended the Monkey Kingdon Event with Disney, I had the opportunity to ride around in the Sedona and I would stretch out on the whole back seat and relax.

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Kia Sorento (30)

Keeping my whole family connected is key.  Everyone has some sort of device to keep them busy in the car.  The Sedona has USB ports in the front and the rear of the car.  Someone who aided in designing this car must have known this feature was needed for big families.

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Kia Sorento (31)

Our current vehicle has quite a few cup holders but not enough for six people.  We always had space for cups or bottles of water when riding around in this car.  There had to be at least ten of them, that’s more than enough for our family.  The week we had the car, temperatures outside were above ninety.  It was very hot outdoors.  In addition to the heated seats this car also has cooling seats, they felt heavenly.

When you live in suburban and urban areas parking can be a hassle.  My husband didn’t get his parallel parking skills down till he moved to Baltimore from Tulsa.  He loved having the parking assist feature of this car.  No more opening the doors to see if he’s in the lines, no checking to see if anything is behind him.  All you do it watch the screen and let it guide you.  The Sedona gives you an ariel view as well as additional views when parking.

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We loved this car, and my husband said he received lots of compliments on the car from several people.  You know you are riding in style when you pull up at the supermarket and you can see the people outside mouthing to each other ‘That’s a nice mini-van’.  I can definitely see us owning one of these in the future.  The Kia Sedona has a starting price of $26,100 and comes with lots of features standard, plus you can upgrade to another model for even more features.  To learn more about the 2015 Kia Sedona visit them online www.kia.com.  See what others are saying about Kia by following the hashtag #DriveKia.

Circle Of Moms Video Series in Partnership with Kia

Circle Of Moms Video Series in Partnership with Kia

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Kia through their partnership with Circle of Moms. While I was compensated to review the Kia Motors video and write a review, all opinions are my own.”

If you haven’t heard about Circle of Moms by POPSUGAR then you are certainly missing out.  I joined the site a while ago before they joined up with POPSUGAR and since they have I have been loving the site even more.  Recently they created the Circle of Moms Video Series in Partnership with Kia featuring Tia Mowry-Hardrict.  Since I am a huge fan of Tia I was excited to see what the series was about.  The series features Tia and three other mothers sharing about parenting.  In the latest video from Circle of Moms By POPSUGAR, Tia and the moms talk about successful parenting with your spouse, great ideas for photos and they even spent some time riding around in the all new 2014 Kia Sorento.

The first part of the segment the ladies sit and talk about the ways they are different from their spouses in parenting.  Tia shared her’s is with co-sleeping.  She is the bad guy because she wants her son to sleep on his one and his father is the good guy because he doesn’t like their son crying at night he lets him sleep with them.  Another mom brought up discipline where she is the bad cop and her husband is the good cop.  This stood out for me because my husband and I have different views for parenting when it comes to discipline but we have to find a middle ground that works for us.  All the ladies shared tips for parenting and one mom even stated that she always shares with couples when they have disagreements that they need to determine if it’s a matter of faith or beliefs.  It was a great way to break down any argument and help you get some great solutions to disagreements.

There was also the trips with Tia segment when they were in the all new 2014 Kia Sorento, they were chatting about their kids and creativity on a trip to the craft store and Tia turned on the cooling seats feature in the car.  I loved this idea, especially with summer on the way, I would love to get in my car and turn on a cooling seat feature so my leather seats are cooler and don’t burn my legs.  In the final part mom Diane Mizota shares some great tips for getting all those photos off of Instagram and Facebook and turn them in great projects.  She shared lots of amazing sites for creating some great products (some of which I will be visiting soon).  Check it out and see what you think.


The episodes are only about nine minutes so you can catch an episode during a quick nap or chore.  I’m sure you’ll be looking for new episodes and checking out these moms for more tips and tricks.  It’s like a mini virtual girlfriend chat.

Thanks to Kia, and Circle of Moms by POPSUGAR for the opportunity.

 

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