Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Ummmm...Love Pop Chips!

I would consider myself a pretty healthy eater.  Sometimes, however, I get a craving for a snack other than carrot sticks, plain nonfat yogurt, or an orange!  Whenever I would indulge in some potato chips, however, I would always feel guilty.  Well, I have recently discovered a great snack that takes that guilt away!  Pop Chips are not fried.  They are also not baked.  They are popped!

Pop Chips come in a variety of delicious flavors.

Cheddar-- these might have been my favorite!  Not overly flavored..just delicious.
Barbecue--a very good barbecue taste
Sour Cream and Onion--I am not really a fan of sour cream and onion flavors in regular chips so I was hesitant to try this one...however, I like it!
Parmesan and garlic---great for those "gourmet" potato chip flavor lovers
Salt and Vinegar--This is a  flavor I occasionally like but have to really be in the mood for it.  I did find Pop Chips to have the perfect amount of flavoring on them, however...not so much it burned my throat or brought tears to my eyes!
Salt and Pepper--a bit spicy.  My youngest insisted on sharing with Mommy even though I warned her they were kind of spicy.  She agreed.  I liked the flavor but can only eat a few chips a a time on this one.
Original--great!  These definitely can be addicting!

My three year old agrees...Pop Chips get a thumbs up!!  (thats how he does the "thumbs up!"

I am definitely a Pop Chip fan now and will be buying Pop Chips for my family and myself in the future.  After I tried my first bag I immediately went to their website to find out where I could buy them near me.  I was excited to see them on sale in this week's Kroger sale ad, too!

Right now, for the month of December, they are offering facebook fans (old & new) an opportunity to save $1 off your next bag of popchips! All you have to do is be a Popchips fan (“like” us) on Facebook. It’s a 30 day rolling coupon, so you have 30 days to use it after you print it, anywhere Popchips are sold in the U.S.
Here is the Facebook link:
Disclosure:  I was provided with samples of Pop Chips to review as part of the Happy and Healthy Moms review team.  I received no monetary compensation and the opinions expressed are my own.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

use this link to win a snow stroller

Use this link to enter

If you live in a snowy area you will love this item.  Have you ever tried to push a stroller through a snowy street?  Its near impossible.  A snow stroller solves that problem.  

Comfortable for your little one and easy on you.

They even have a double model now:

The giveaway ends on January 1st.

Win a fetal doppler

A highlight in every pregnancy is getting to hear your baby's heartbeat.  It can be the one interesting and exciting thing during otherwise pretty boring routine doctor's visits.  Many times, however, its only the mother to be that gets to share in that experience.  Husbands are often working and unable to attend the appointments and children are not often taken to the doctor by the expecting mother.  A great way to let the rest of the family share in the experience is to have a fetal doppler monitor at home.  You can rent them month by month or even buy them. 

One person will win their very own Baby Beat Medical Grade Fetal Doppler!  You can go to Take Time To Smell The Roses to enter.

Anyone who has suffered a loss during a pregnancy will especially treasure this item.  Once you have lost a child, pregnancy now becomes a scary and worrisome event.  A fetal doppler can bring so much peace of mind to an otherwise nervous and worried mother. 

ten tips for making this the ultimate holiday season

What makes this time of the year special to me and my family?  How do we make sure it has real meaning?  Here are 10 tips I have that I have.


1.  If you exchange gifts as part of your holiday traditions, make them fun and meaningful.  Sometimes children get so many gifts during the holiday time that they sort of get overwhelmed and soon it all just becomes "stuff" that gets forgotten about or seldom played with.  Instead of showering children with a sea of presents, how about focusing on really special gift that will "wow" them?  Hasbro's Ultimate Gifts has some really great suggestions:

(Ages 5 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $199.99/Available: Now)
(Ages 4 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $299.99/Available: Now)
(Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $49.99/Available: Now)
(Ages 8 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $119.99/Available: Now)
(Ages 4 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $179.99/Available: Now)
(Ages 5 years & up/Approx. Retail Price: $89.99/Available: Now)

When I read this list right away I knew one little boy here that would love the Millennium Falcon!  I also know one baby girl who would love the Butterscotch Pony!

2.  Encourage your children to be generous.  Get them involved in the giving process.  Have them help select gifts for their teachers.  They can wrap presents for members of your family.  Do you give something to the paper boy, mailman, or UPS driver?  Have the children run out to present it to them.  They will enjoy being involved and it will foster a generous spirit as they grow.

3.  While gifts are nice, remember its not the main reason we even have a holiday season after all.  Try not to over focus on the getting and even giving of gifts.  Make sure your children are well aware of this.  This includes setting aside extra time for special Church services and activities.


4.  Make time for your whole family to  volunteer together.  Not sure where your services might be needed?  Here are a few suggestions...Animal shelters often become very full as temperatures drop and people take pity on animals they see wandering in the cold and snow.  Extra cage cleaners may be needed.  Nursing homes often have residents that just don't have any family left or family in the area.  They sure would appreciate a card and maybe a picture colored by your child.  Just a few minutes spent with a patient even when you don't know they lets them know people still care.  Food banks get the bulk of their donations at this time of the year.  They may need people to sort and package items so they can be distributed.  Soup kitchens or other free meal services are usually in need of extra hands to prepare and serve food and clean up afterwards.

Make Time to Spend Together:

5.  My husband generally works everyday of the year.  Holidays included.  On the days he doesn't work or only works late in the evening, he generally is gone with friends or something.  I try to make sure that, even if its just one day, he spend an entire day with his family.  Maybe make a fire in the morning and spend the day talking, playing games, having specials snacks etc.  Usually a great family movie ends the evening.  And even though my husband usually gets caught sneaking time with his cell phone texting away or disappears for a while and is found in front of his computer, for the most part its family time!


6.  Bake lots and lots of homemade treats.  I remember when I was little my mother would bake so many varieties of cookies and treats and then store them in tins and containers in the bottom of our china cabinet.  It was always such a treat to decide what type of cookie or baked good you would eat that evening!  So bake bake bake!  Get a set of recipes that you use yearly.  Your family will look forward to these seasonal treats.  You will also always be set for company--both the planned and the unexpected.

Host Gatherings For  Friends:

7.  A lot of emphasis is usually made at this time of year about spending time with family.  But don't forget to spend time with that group of friends you love being with.  Have a friends party night.  The easiest way to do this is have everyone bring something to contribute to a nice meal.  I did this recently and made a huge turkey and 2 spiral sliced hams.  I also made mashed potatoes and 2 cranberry dishes and herbed corn.  That was so much easier than the huge spreads I usually end up doing.  Friends brought sweet potato casserole, stuffing, green beans garden salad, rolls,  a few desserts and drinks.  We ended up with an abundance of food and I didn't have to spend days doing it.  We set it up buffet style and everyone sat where ever around the house...some at the dining room table, some with TV trays in the living or family room, and some of the children even ate in my son's room.  We even used disposable plates and cups!  This actually allowed me to enjoy my company for a change!

8.  Let your children host a party with their friends.  Just like you enjoy spending time with your friends, children do too.  Having a little party of friends over really lets children feel special and it can become a fun tradition all children involved will remember fondly when they are grown.  Smaller children might like a few simple crafts to keep them and their friends busy.  This will also keep things much calmer and more manageable than had you just let them come up with their own plan.  Children of all ages love a make your own pizza and sundaes them.  Preteen girls seem to like decorating sugar cookies a lot.

Consider How You Dress:

9.  I know some people are all about comfort and feel they can enjoy things more when they are comfortable.  To me, however, special times like this deserve special clothing.  Spending the holidays in a pretty dress, hair done and make up on makes things feel elegant and memorable.  Even my children are dress up in pretty dresses or suits.  To me special days should have special clothes!

Savor and Enjoy It!:

10.  Finally, don't get so caught up in everything that has to happen, needs to happen, has happened that you don't just sit back, relax and enjoy yourself.  Spend time everyday thinking over the blessings in your life.  Be thankful for all you have.  Watch your children and remember what it was like to be a child.  All of this will keep the smile on your face and the joy in your heart!

“I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Hasbro Ultimate Gifts blogging sweepstakes, making me eligible to get a $50 Gift card to use at! For more information on how you can participate, click here.

Win a Snow Stroller here!

Use this link to enter

If you live in a snowy area you will love this item.  Have you ever tried to push a stroller through a snowy street?  Its near impossible.  A snow stroller solves that problem.  

Comfortable for your little one and easy on you.

They even have a double model now:

The giveaway ends on January 1st.

Win a Snow Stroller!

Use this link to enter

If you live in a snowy area you will love this item.  Have you ever tried to push a stroller through a snowy street?  Its near impossible.  A snow stroller solves that problem.  

Comfortable for your little one and easy on you.

They even have a double model now:

The giveaway ends on January 1st.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Want a chance at some amazing prizes?

Baby Gizmo has a 12 days of Christmas giveaway going on right now.  Talk about amazing prizes!!!  This contest has it!

Here's a little peak at some of their line up:

I have no doubt you will want to enter so you can have a chance to win.  Just go to Baby Gizmo to see how you can enter.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

five helpful tips for holiday tech shopping

Undoubtedly, if you have a list of people to shop for this holiday season, you will have some tech items on your "to buy" list.  Many people feel overwhelmed when it comes to buying technology related items.  Are you one?  Here are some tips I have to help you make your purchases:

1.  If you don't really know much, if anything at all, about the item you are setting out to find, take along someone that does.  Its a terrible feeling to be standing in a store and have no idea which item is what you want, which item is better, or which item is the best deal.  If you have a tech savvy person with you, it will help take the guess work out of your purchase.  Don't rely solely on sales people.  Sometimes they have no more idea than you about items in the store, although they will seldom admit it!  They may also try to sway your purchase to something that doesn't exactly fit your needs just to make a sale, or lead you to a more expensive item just to boost their commissions.  So take a buddy!

2.  Ask the intended recipient a lot of questions (or if its to be a total surprize, ask someone who knows just what the recipient would want).  For example, you might know someone wants a computer...well do they want a desktop model?  Are they hoping for a laptop?  Maybe they are wanting one of the very small notebook types?  Do they have a certain brand in mind?  What will they be using the gift for exactly?  Do they have color preferences?  Clearing up questions like this will prove to me most helpful when you arrive at the store.  Arriving at a store these days just to say "I want an Ipod" will no longer cut it!  Wayyyyy too many choices out there!

3.  Comparison shop for your item.  Watch sales ads and commercials.  Check the internet.  There can be huge price differences on identical tech items out there.  Ask stores if they are willing to price match as well.  Many will do that these days.  It might make it easier on you to be able to buy your tech item at a store where you will be purchasing other items as well.

4.  Find out the return policy before you buy.  What if, despite all your advance preparations you find out what you bought wasn't quite what the recipient had their heart set on?  Will the store you bought it for accept a return?  Will they return it for cash?  Will you have to take a store credit?  Does the package have to be unopened?  How many days do you have to make the return (very important when buying a gift ahead of time!)  Will they need a receipt?  Do they offer gift receipts?  Don't be afraid to ask a lot of questions.

5.  Find out if there is anything else needed to use the item or if everything is included.  Did you ever open a toy as a child and find it was just what you were hoping for....only to find out it didn't come with batteries and there were none of the size you needed in the house and no stores open?  Do you remember that disappointment?  I sure do!  So find out if there are chargers, power cords, memory cards, lenses, software, hardware....whatever else you could possibly need to make the item ready to go once recieved.  You don't want to make your recipient have to wait for stores to open to be able to use their much appreciated and loved item!!

Yes, sometimes tech shopping can feel overwhelming, but with just a few simple steps you can take a lot of the "scary" out of it!  So now, go on out and get those tech items crossed off your shopping list!!

About Staples:
Staples, the world's largest office products company, is committed to making it easy for customers to buy a wide range of office products and services. Our broad selection of office supplies, electronics, technology and office furniture as well as business services, including computer repair and copying and printing, helps our customers run their offices efficiently. With 2009 sales of $24 billion and 91,000 associates worldwide, Staples operates in 26 countries throughout North and South America, Europe, Asia and Australia serving businesses of all sizes and consumers. Staples invented the office superstore concept in 1986 and today ranks second worldwide in e-commerce sales. The company is headquartered outside Boston.

More info:
I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Staples blogging program, making me eligible for a $50 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Rayovac contest!

Rayovac wants to power your holidays with fun new contest. To enter, just visit the Mom Rocks the Holidays with Rayovac contest tab on Facebook, like them and tell them how you or your mom makes the holidays rock for a chance to win the Grand Prize of $1,000 cash! There will be 3 Grand Prize winners and 20 Runner Up winners will take home a Paper Jamz guitar, amp, drum kit, guitar strap, and two Rayovac Alkaline AAA 24 packs of batteries.
Also, be sure to visit Mommy Goggles ‘Moms Rock the Holidays with Rayovac & Paper Jamz Giveaway!‘ where you can win 1 of 5 Mom Rocks the Holiday prize packs that include a $50 Visa Gift Card, Paper Jamz guitar and Rayovac Alkaline AAA 24 pack of batteries.
Disclosure – Followers who promote the Rayovac Mom Rocks the Holidays Sweepstakes may receive gifts from Rayovac.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

10 tips for stylish layering techniques for all occasions

I often dress in layers.  I H_A_T_E hate being cold.  I find layering my clothing to be a great way to stay warm.  I even have to layer in the summer a lot.  We don't have air conditioning in our home so I am dressed for the heat.  When I go somewhere I find not being used to the cold air makes it feel even colder.  I often wear sweaters in the summer!

So what are some layering tips from a self proclaimed layering expert such as myself?  Here are 10 that I can share:

1. One time I layer is when shopping.  I find that sometimes stores are just so overheated.  This is especially true near the entrances it seems.  Near the entrances where the cash registers are.  So there you are in a long line, actively bouncing a crabby baby, and it feels like it is 100 degrees.  I love to be able to pull off that warm fuzzy fleece sweater and wear my light weight tee.  I also like to leave my coat in the car when going into stores so I don't have to worry about lugging it around when its too warm to wear it inside.  I really appreciate that fleece sweatshirt walking into the store.  But once it gets warm inside, I really appreciate a much cooler shirt.

2.  Consider making your wardrobe based on a single basic color.  I like to wear black.  I think it looks good on me and I love the versatility of it.  I purchase most of my skirts, pants etc in basic black.  I try to choose black for my sweaters, sweatshirts, jackets etc too.  I can then layer a turtleneck or tank in a fun color.  Using a base color like black means that I can pretty much mix and match everything i own to create a bunch of great mix match and layered looks making my clothing selection seem much bigger than it is.

3.  Are you a Breastfeeding mom?  I have been breastfeeding for many years of my life now.  Layering is a great way to build your confidence for breastfeeding in public.  I was always pretty good at being able to get a baby latched on without flashing boobage to anyone, however what always made me feel pretty self conscience was wondering if anyone could see my no longer perfectly flat tummy exposed from having my shirt lifted.  What about that back fat?  Is it sticking out anywhere?  My children were never still nursers and would like to rub their hands all around often lifting my shirt in the process.  A great layering solution is to wear a tank under your shirt.  They do make special nursing tanks that work wonderfully.  They can be a bit costly, however, and you can still layer with tanks on a much lower budget!  Just buy a tank that is a little big for you.  One with some spandex type stretch is great.  You can pull the neckline under your breast before unlatching your bra.  This will eliminate all those tummy exposure worries!

4.  Layering can make that low cut blouse or dress wearable!  Have you ever seen a really cute dress in the store only to try it on and find it too immodest for your taste?  Or maybe you bought a top and when you tried it on it seemed great but once you actually wore it you found that it slipped down in front or having to bend over and lift your children ect. left you exposed?  Layering a nice fitting tank is the perfect solution.  You can pick a color that blends well with the garment or you can pick a contrasting color for an extra fun pop!  This is great to eliminate too much cleavage or droopy armhole issues.  Modesty restored!

5.  Do you live in a cold winter climate?  We do.  Layering is really important for your comfort when participating in winter sports or taking care of winter chores like shoveling snow.  It will be cold so you want to be warm, but as you get active you will begin to sweat.  Wet, sweaty clothing will then make you freezing cold.  Its important to make your first layer something that can wick moister away.  Layering garments can be made of different fabrics.  Looking over Cuddl Duds website I found that they make layering garments in Bamboo.  I love the feel of bamboo clothing.  What a great layering option!

6. While there are times when you want your layers to show, there are times when you won't.  Sometimes you are layering only as a way to control moisture (you don't want to sweat on your clothes!) or make a garment that may be scratchy or uncomfortable on its own more wearable.  In that case you are going to want to make sure you match your necklines well!  If you have a V neck top layer, choose a under layer with a similar neckline so that you don't have to keep trying to adjust your under layers to prevent  it from showing.  Constant clothing adjustments is a pain and will look rather awkward.

7.  Get cold feet?  I do.  So I layer my feet too. Buying a great pair of dressy boots is a great way to be able to wear socks all the time.  I wear my dress boots with a pair of socks inside to Church or any other dress occasion, all winter long.  It so much more comfortable than shoes that would leave me with cold feet!

8.  Wear layering pants under your skirts.  A pair of tight fitting pants made for layering is a perfect way to add warmth under your skirt.  A skirt that goes to at least your knee and a pair of boots means that no one will be able to even see your secret under layer.  Coordinate your pants to match with your skirt and any time your pants do show everyone will think they are your tights.  Cold drafts up your skirt are definitely no fun.  What a great solution.

9. Pregnancy...the perfect time to layer.  I always get quite the belly when pregnant. Its not long and I find that I have outgrown my maternity clothing.  Over the belly pants are too tight and my shirts no longer are long enough to make all around the very large protruding belly I have and often leave my belly showing if not all the time, at least when I move around.  They now have great layering options for pregnant women.  A tube like band (think tube top looking) that you wear under your shirts will provide you complete coverage.  No more belly flashing.  These bands also work great in early pregnancy when you just can't quite button your regular pants anymore.  You can leave them unbuttoned and cover with this band.  It will also help hold up maternity pants in those beginning weeks of wearing them when your regular pants are too small yet maternity things are a bit big.  After you have your baby you can wear those  pre pregnancy jeans earlier leaving them unbuttoned again and wearing your band over them.  No one will realize your secret but they will be amazed you are in your old clothes already!  This is a highly recommended must have maternity item in my eyes!

10.  If I had to pick the one most important must have layering piece it would be a turtleneck.  i love turtlenecks.  The only reason I would even consider liking cold weather, it would be because I get to wear turtlenecks.  I love the comfort.  I like the secure feeling of having my neck covered.  Another great thing about the turtleneck is they are inexpensive to buy.  You can have a nice selection of colors and prints.  So when you plan to layer, never overlook your turtlenecks!

Cuddl Duds designs and manufactures high quality intimate apparel. As the leading warm underwear maker in America, Cuddl Duds has become synonymous with comfort and “feeling good.” Cuddl Duds is a wholly owned subsidiary of Komar.

Komar, the 102-year-old privately held apparel, consumer products and distribution services company, designs, markets and manufactures women's and children’s sleepwear, loungewear and lingerie. Komar is a progressive company with a global sourcing network that includes factories in fourteen countries andstate-of-the-art distribution facilities. Founded by Charles Komar in 1908, who stated “you only have one reputation,” the third-generation Komars adhere to this guiding principle while running the company today

“I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Cuddl Duds blogging program, making me eligible to get a $40 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Zoobie pets

You probably are aware that Pillow Pets are all the rage this year.  If you watch the kids channels on TV you will notice many a commercial breaks feature the Pillow Pet commercial.  Each time the commercial shows, my children all awww  and ohhhh and try to pick their favorite.  Each time we are in a store that has the pets they beg and plead.

Want to know what I find even better than Pillow Pets?  Zoobie Pets~!  Zoobie Pets are
plush animals that turn into pillows and blankets. They’ve won over 45 industry awards and can be found in over2,500 US stores.

If find them not only  practical, but simply adorable!!  I entered to win one here at Blessings Abound

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

I Need this bike!!

Madsen Cycles Cargo Bikes

You too?  Just use the link to get your chance to enter too!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

ten tips for new moms who are bringing a baby home

You spend months preparing for your baby.  You sit and wait and wonder will your baby EVER come as days pass and you are still pregnant.  Sure enough, your baby comes.  After a couple days in the hospital, suddenly you are sent home.  After all the worrying you did making sure everything was perfect and ready for the new addition, now your attention shifts to keeping baby safe, healthy and happy.

What can you do to be confident that you did everything possible to ensure baby is safe, healthy and happy?  Here are some tips from a me, a mom who has brought many babies home over the years!

1.  If you have other children they most likely will be in love with this new tiny little life.  Even if they haven't hit that madly in love point quite yet, they no doubt will be quite curious about this interesting new creature.  Right away teach your children to touch baby on places other than the hands and face.  Keeping baby from being touched helps keep baby from getting germs but also protects the baby from things like eye pokings (whether accidental or not quite so accidental).  Have other children rub baby's back or hold baby's foot instead.  You can encourage the child by saying how much baby likes his/her back rubbed or how baby is looking right at the child while the child holds baby's foot.

2.  Perhaps people will want visit you in your house after baby.  This is great because often they will be bringing food or gifts for the baby.  Its perfectly acceptable to request visitors wash their hands before holding baby.  You should never feel akward requesting it.

3.  Sooner or later you are going to have to wander out of your home with your infant in tow.  A baby in a carrier seat placed in a shopping cart is a total invitation for strangers to invade the baby's personal space zone.  Even if you have your baby covered over with a blanket, strangers see the need to remove the blanket to not only gaze at your little miracle but also to touch.  One of the first times I took out my first born son out a complete stranger actually went up to him leaned over and kissed his face!  I stood there shocked and realized there had to be a better way to protect baby.  Using a baby carrier worn on your body really solves this issue.  Most people won't invade your space nearly as quick as they will invade baby's.  There are lots of carrier options available.  A perfect one for very small babies that really covers and protects them in a wrap style like this:

4.  Speaking of going out, Dr. visits will be a big part of your life with a baby.  Even if baby is very healthy, well child appointments are very important.  When making your appointments consider choosing the first appointment of the morning.  First, the waiting rooms should have been freshly cleaned overnight.  minimal germ exposure there.  Next, they will probably be least busy at this time.  You will get in and out faster and be exposed to less waiting people.  I have found that the worst time to schedule a visit is late in the evening.  Parents often wait till the end of the day to take a sick child in hoping as the day goes on they feel better.  Sometimes a sick child isn't really discovered until the parents return from work.  Many offices will add sick children in at the end of the day even beyond their normal work hours so that they can be seen.

5.  The same principal applies to running other errands in your day.  Consider going during the least busy times.  If you have the kind of luck I do, you will soon discover that every time you get into the check out line, your baby will wake and insist he/she has never been so hungry.  The shortest time you have to spend in that check out line, the better.  Less busy times of the day ensure you will get through that line quickly.  You will also be exposed to much less people/germs.  One area you really want to avoid in a store is the pharmacy area.  Many people picking up prescriptions are sick!  If you do have prescriptions to get, take advantage of the drive thru line!

6.  Although I try to avoid cleaners in my home on a daily basis, there are times when disinfectants are necessary.  If any of your other children, or anyone in the household is sick, its time to break out the Lysol.  Go through each room and wipe down any area that's a frequently touched surface.  Suggestions:  lightswitches, door handles, cabinet handles, soap dispensers, faucet knobs, toilet flush handle, refrigerator handle, etc.  Wash your dishes on the sanitize cycle in your dishwasher.  Clothing, sheets and towels should be washed in hot water.  If you like to use towels a few times before washing, during sick times you should abandon that practice and wash after each use.

7.  Boost up your family's immunity but making sure they are eating good healthy foods.  Try to prevent your family from even getting sick in the first place so that baby doesn't get exposed.   Include lots of fruits and veggies.  Try to totally avoid processed foods.  Also, give your family vitamins and consider herbal supplements that boost immunity.

8.  Baby's bathtime can be very enjoyable but there are steps you should take to make it safe.  First, turn your water heater down so that water will not get scaldingly hot.  Make sure your baby's portable bath tub is on a very stable surface.  Have all your supplies ready and within an arms reach before you get baby in the tub.  NEVER EVER take your hands off baby or let your eye divert away.  Once water starts to cool off, remove baby to avoid chills.  Quickly dress baby while keeping as much of baby covered at all times.  Doing these things will keep baby from any harm.

9.  Don't ever allow your pets to be left alone with the baby.  A nice warm snuggly baby looks like the perfect place for kitty to take a nap on.  Dogs may love the baby but could cause accidental harm if they jumped up on the baby carrier or swing to take a look.  Also, watch your dog closely when guests come over.   Some dogs immediately recognize this baby as their's to protect.  A normally very laid back people loving dog may not be at ease with visitors touching "their" baby.  When I brought my first born home, he would cry when he got his diaper changed.  I had a cat that would come running into the room and actually attack my legs, biting and clawing me.  I guess she thought I was hurting the baby!  I soon began closing the door to the room before I started changing baby.  When I brought my 4th child home my one dog sat outside my bedroom door and decided it was his job to keep the other dog away.  He would guard the door and allow other people in without issue but whenever the other dog came around he'd start growling and block the doorway.  So just beaware that a new baby is an adjustment for the furry members of your family as well.

10.  Finally, realize that no matter how much you try, things are going to happen.  Sooner or later your baby will get sick.  Don't feel guilty about it.  You can make your home as safe as possible but accidents will happen.  When I was carrying my sleeping 5th newborn baby into my bedroom one evening my pocket on my shorts got hooked over the door handle to the bedroom and suddenly jerked me backwards and downward and I fell to my knees.  I swore the baby would end up with shaken baby syndrome from the impact even though she never left my arms and didn't even wake up.  I called my pediatrician in tears.  She said she was sure the baby was just fine.  If there was anything unusual that came up to call right back, but she was sure things were just fine.  So try to relax.  Remember you did all you could to make baby as healthy, safe and happy as possible.

Arriving at your home with a newborn is certainly and exciting, happy time.  Do all you can to make sure its a safe, healthy time as well!

“I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Lysol® Wee Wisdom blogging program, making me eligible to get a $50 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Instead of dressing on a salad

Have you read dressing ingredients lately?  The amount of preservative ingredients is a bit scary.  Also, while looking at that label, check those  Your super healthy barely any calorie salad for lunch turns out not quite so healthy and pretty calorie heavy!  You might like to try my no dressing solution.  I make this yummy avocado salsa and top my salad( that I have added a healthy dose of kidney beans to)with it and skip the dressing. 

  • 2 ripe avocado,
  • 4 tomatillos, husks removed
  • 1/4 cup cilantro leaves
  • 1/2 cup green onion
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2of a jalapeno, fresh, seeded
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large garlic cloves
  • 1/2 of a small onion


Scoop out the avocado from the skin and set aside. Remove tomatillos from husk and cut into quarters. Coarsely chop green onions. Process the avocados, green onions and the tomatillos with the rest of the ingredients for 2 second intervals in a food processor until only slightly chunky

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Hold the salt, pass the lemons!

I am sure you have heard the dangers that a high sodium diet can bring.  Even if you can't name all the health risks associated with too much salt, you likely know high sodium diets are not healthy. 

Many people are now watching their sodium intake.  Reading labels.   Leaving the salt shaker off the table.  Choosing products labeled "low sodium".  But do you have to leave the flavor behind when you ditch the salt? 

Sunkist answers with a definate "NO"!!

Sunkist encourages everyone to try their S'alternative. 
S’alternative is a flavorful salt alternative using fresh-squeezed Sunkist® lemons. The result is enhanced natural flavor with increased potassium and reduced sodium!

You can find more information on S'alternative here.

You can also find a fantastic opportunity to win fabulous prizes in Sunkist's recipe contest here.  $1000 grocery gift card is the grand prize!  I will be thinking of S'alternatives in the next few days for sure!

I wrote this blog post at the request of Sunkist, making me eligible
to get $10 in free Sunkist Lemons.”

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Bumblewee's giveaway

Time sure does fly.  Now is the perfect time to enter in this giveaway by Bumblewee Nursing wear.  If you delay too much longer you just might find its over! 

Thursday, September 2, 2010

ways to make your favorite foods healthier

Whether you are on an actual diet or not, you most likely are concerned about making healthy eating choices.  If you are not concerned, well it probably about time you were!  There are plenty of unhealthy choices out there, that's for sure.  The problem with those unhealthy choices is they just taste so good!  So what can you do to make some of those "gotta have it" favorites a bit less forbidden?  Here are some of the ways I do it.

One.  To start with, I substitute ground turkey or chicken for ground beef or sausage.  Doing this will make your favorite dinners drop loads of fat and plenty of calories as well.  If you are making things like casseroles or meatballs for your spaghetti you won't even notice the difference amongst all the other tastes.  Making something like burgers or meatloaf is a little trickier.  First a simpler food like those really lets the taste of the meat show through.  Also, being so low fat, ground poultry could have a tendency to end up a bit dry tasting.  You do have to experiment around some to find the perfect recipe that satisfies those beefy cravings.  Try buying low sodium beef bouillon and mixing it into your meat.  That will easily "beef up" the taste.  Also, adding Worcestershire sauce into your meat mixture will give it more of a beef appeal as well.  Here is another idea for turkey burgers:

  • 1 pound ground turkey
  •   half of a (1 ounce) package dry onion soup mix
  • 2 tablespoons steak sauce
Just mix and cook.

Two.  Another thing I do in casseroles is to cut back the amount of meat I put in.  Sometimes I cut as much as 1/2 the meat out.  At other times I cut out about 1/4.  Either way, its not missed.

Three.  Cheese is another easily reduced item.  Add the teeny tiniest of sprinkling to top a pizza.  Casseroles with cheese can have their cheese cut down by 1/4 if not more. Cheese is very high in fat.  Control is important here.

Four.  Another thing I do to enjoy some of my favorites, only healthier is to search for whole grain options of the classic recipes.  This is important to me because I am most likely going to be craving bread like carbs over anything else.  There are untold numbers of recipes  for whole grain pancakes.  Have you ever tried IHop's Harvest Nut and Grain Pancakes?  I love them and found this copycat recipe for them:

***Dry Mix:***
7 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 1/8 cup Quaker quick oatmeal
1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
3 1/2 cups corn meal
1 cup wheat bran
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
5 3/4 tablespoons baking powder
2 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
2 1/3 tablespoons dry malt*
1 3/4 teaspoon salt
***Waffle/Pancake batter:***
1 3/4 cuplow fat buttermilk (use more for pancakes)
2  eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
6 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon water

1/2 cup skim milk
Dry Mix: Mix all ingredients together. Store in air tight container.

Waffle/Pancake batter: Put buttermilk in bowl and whisk in eggs. Whisk in 2 cups dry mix. Add vanilla. Melt butter and water and milk whisk into batter.

Whole grain recipes are generally lower in fat and calories plus our bodies can use whole grains much better than the processed, refined, white versions.  Its just healthier for us.  They also fill you up faster so you don't have to eat as much.

Five.  Use whole grain high fiber bread choices for things like french toast.   Whole grain products are a pretty big fad right now so you can find all kinds of whole grain options easily.  Look for tortillas, cereals, crackers etc. 

Six.  I think one of the greatest whole grain products out right now is the pasta.  Have you ever tried the Barilla Plus or other similar pastas?  Fantastic!!!  If your family is used to the regular white pastas, they won't even know you switched on them.

My husband is really into his Fettucine Alfredo.  Now thats a diet nightmare, right?  It doesn't have to be.  Try this instead:

1 cup evaporated skim milk
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/4 tsp. white or black pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

In a large saucepan, bring evaporated milk to a simmer over moderate heat.
Stir in the parmesan cheese, green onions and parsley.
As soon as the cheese has melted and sauce is thick and creamy, pour over cooked pasta
Season with white pepper. I like a pinch of nutmeg or garlic garlic powder over mine

It's hard for me to keep the fact that I have a sweet tooth a secret!

Six.  Here are some things you can do to lower fat in your baked goods.  Use egg whites instead of whole eggs, using applesause instead of oil etc.

Seven  One thing I could never get into in the past, however, was sugar substitutes.  I just could not make myself believe that they were healthy for your body and not at all harmful.  What has me quite excited lately, however, is the use of Stevia in products.  Stevia is a plant product that can be used in place of sugar.  Its natural and not harmful.  You can really cut calories using Stevia.

Eight.  The recent appearance of healthier ice cream products is amazing.  I have tried several brands of the low fat ice creams and they have been better than good!  They are really worth a try when ice cream is on your mind. 

Nine.  Try yogurt for your favorite flavors instead of ice cream.  There are some great yogurts out now, too, that can really satisfy that chocolate craving.  The whip chocolate varieties are good.  There is another brand that has a mint chocolate chip variety that is yummy and I saw they now have a chocolate chip cookie dough variety too.  I don't know the calories in these little cups but I am sure its a savings over a similar ice cream flavor... and you get automatic portion control as well with a container of yogurt.  You get that ice cream flavor you want so badly but don't compromise a healthy diet doing it. 

Ten.  When I bake use some other tricks to make the indulgence a little less indulgent.  Skimp on frosting when making cakes.   The frosting is the really high calorie spread it really thin!  Reduce the chocolate chips in cookies etc.  Use just enough to give you your chocolate fix.   When making fruit desserts like pie and strawberry shortcake, cut the sugar back.  Recipes are generally over generous with sugar  on these items.    Using less sugar saves you calories and lets the taste of the fruit  shine through rather than just a sweetness.

And one last bonus tip!  Look for your favorite meals in the frozen food sections of your grocery store.  Companies like Weight Watchers make very diet friendly versions of some of your best love meals.  Not only do you get to enjoy your favorite a healthy way...but you also don't have to spend hours making that's amazing!!

Whether you plan on enjoying a full fat, high calorie treat at the end of a day or a lighter version of your favorites, make sure you plan for it earlier in the day or make up for it the next day.  Maybe have a simple piece of fruit for breakfast, a salad for lunch and a small piece of broiled chicken for dinner with a good assortment of plain steamed veggies.  This will help make up for your treat. 

No matter what your weakness is, there are sure to be ways that you can make it less of forbidden and more of a smart, healthy choice!  So get creative and love what you eat!

“I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and WeightWatchers SmartOnes blogging program, making me eligible to get a $50 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

make your home cleaner and greener!

I have been cleaning my home "green" for years.  Some years ago if you told someone you didn't use standard cleaners in your home because they contained chemicals you'd rather avoid your family being exposed to,  you most likely would have been given a weird look.  I know because it happened to me more than once!  Now (hurray!!) cleaning green is something that's pretty commonplace.  Yes, even big companies now are carrying a "greener" line of cleaning products.

So what can you do to have a clean and green home?  Here are some tips I have learned over the years:

First, remove your shoes.  Yes, that's right!  Wearing your shoes inside your home will make your home dirtier.  Dirt, mud, animal poop, etc will track through your home making it much harder to clean again.  Yes, it's there, even if you can't see it on your shoes, it's there.  Plus, you track in a lot of chemicals on your shoes. The first time I read that statement, some time ago, I had a real "wow" moment!  Why had I never thought of that before?  Just think about it.  You walk through a lot on your journeys outside your home.  Those chemicals and impurities then will get tracked into your home via your shoes.  Think of all that stuff getting rubbed off your shoes into your carpets!  No thanks!!

Unfortunately, even with shoe removal, my floors get really dirty.  I have lots of hard floors here.  I also know I don't want my children playing on floors that were mopped down with chemicals.  In the past I had used simple vinegar in a bucket of water to mop with.  Now, however, I have found that those steam mops are about the best invention in housecleaning history!  The steam really really cleans and no chemicals are needed what-so-ever!  Trust me, try one.

Next, lets talk toilets.   Why not use regular purchased  toilet bowl cleaners?  One big reason is many contain bleach and other very toxic harmful chemicals.  Not only is exposure dangerous to your family but think of what it does to your environment.  Do you have a septic tank?  Septics depend on a balance of bacteria to keep them working properly.  Pouring chemicals..especially bleach...into your septic system could be detrimental to its proper balance.  If you have ever priced having a new septic system put in, you will agree that taking care of the one you have is of utmost importance.  To avoid chemicals, try using baking soda and vinegar in your toilet.  All you have to do is sprinkle in baking soda and then pour in some vinegar.  It will foam and fizz..that's normal.  Let it sit while you clean the rest of your bathroom.  Go back and brush your toilet out and flush.  You will be impressed at its sparkling appearance!

So while we are in the bathroom what can you do about that tub?  This is another area that really bothered me and helped me convert to "green".  You clean your tub with harsh chemicals and even if you rinse it there is bound to be some residue left over.  Then you run a bathtub full of water and put your baby in it!  You are basically soaking your little angel in chemicals!  Ick. Want to know what works wonders on removing that ring around the tub?  It's baking soda, again!  Just wet the tub a bit and sprinkle baking soda on.  The best thing to scrub with, you ask?  Well, you know those little net puffs that they sell to lather up shower gel with?  Try one of those.  It works really hard at getting your tub spotless!

A big bathroom problem is mildew.  Do you have to resort to bleach for this problem?  Nope!  Prevent mold and mildew from becoming a problem in the bathroom; keep a spray bottle filled with 1 cup water and 1 drop tea tree oil handy for zapping stains.  Smells so much better than bleach, too!

How about that never ending stack of dirty laundry?  With 5 children my laundry pile multiplies rapidly.  Laundry detergent is full of chemicals.  There are additives that make your laundry fluffier, brighter, whiter, etc, etc, etc.  Does your laundry water drain into your septic?  Remember that septic tank discussion we had a few seconds ago....  Mine actually drains out into the field around our house.  So any chemicals that are in my washer, they rinse right out into the field surrounding my home.  We also have a well for our water in our house.  So, whenever I dump chemicals into my environment I am in danger of getting them returned via my well water!  Yes, the well is very far from my washer drain, very far.  But still, I don't want to chance any of those chemicals coming back into my drinking glass because they soaked into my soiled.  I make my own laundry detergent.  It does not take long at all and does a very nice job.  I am very qualified to make that statement, might I add, as a mom to 3 young boys!  Yes, they do know how to make very very dirty laundry.  Here are 2 recipes for laundry detergent that I use.  The first makes a liquid form, the following is for a powdered form.  It's just personal preference which you choose.  I use cloth diapers and they always come out clean and free of build up and smells with these recipes.

1 quart Water (boiling)
2 cups Bar soap (grated)
2 cups Borax
2 cups Washing Soda
  • Add finely grated bar soap to the boiling water and stir until soap is melted. You can keep on low heat until soap is melted.
  • Pour the soap water into a large, clean pail and add the Borax and Washing Soda. Stir well until all is dissolved.
  • Add 2 gallons of water, stir until well mixed.
  • Cover pail and use 1/4 cup for each load of laundry. Stir the soap each time you use it (will gel).
Powdered recipe

12 cups Borax
8 cups Baking Soda
8 cups Washing Soda
8 cups Bar soap (grated)
  • Mix all ingredients well and store in a sealed tub.
  • Use 1/8 cup of powder per full load.

Now, for my next tip, you can get rid of all that fabric softener.  Have you ever read what that stuff has been linked to?  You'd be surprised, I am sure.  Remember, whatever is on your clothing, rubbing against your skin, gets soaked up into your body.  So, in your washing machine that's happily running with your homemade laundry detergent, just add about a cup of plain white vinegar where your fabric softener would normally go or add it to the rinse cycle if you have no automatic dispenser.  This will work to release any suds and residue on your laundry and make it naturally softer.

My kitchen is the room I clean most often.  It gets used a lot!  One problem spot is the microwave.  I personally would prefer not to even have a microwave, but my husband uses and wants it.  Since he is the only one using it, it's easy to figure out who makes the massive mess in it.  I'd like to say he has never heard of covering anything to prevent splatters but I KNOW he has heard of it, after all I say it to him every other day or more!  Anyways, you probably know spaghetti sauce is not easy to remove once hardened on.  Neither is cheese, or anything else my husband heats in there.  This works fantastic, however.  Just place a bowl of water with 1/2 a lemon in the microwave.  Heat it to boil it.  Let it sit a few minutes then remove the bowl and wipe the surfaces clean.  It literally just wipes away, no effort needed.  The steam works amazing and the lemon gets rid of that mix of tomato sauce and cinnamon roll smell from the past few days usage someone may leave behind!  

We have several full length glass doors in our house.  I guess I must like to collect finger prints from small children and nose pirnts from animals.  I believe that's the main function of these doors.  By the way, I think animal snot may be one of the stickiest substances on earth!  Nose prints on glass left behind by pets is so hard to remove!  What do I do to avoid chemical cleaners?  3 Tablespoons of white vinegar mixed in a gallon of water.  Spray this mixture on and wipe.  Glass will sparkle!  Yes, you will still have to scrub at those nose prints....but I count that time as part of my effort twords meeting that daily exercise requirement!  Raise that hear trate while scrubbing!

Finally, Remember, when considering any cleaning task, check your local stores for "green" options first.  Like I mentioned earlier, green is in.  There are many options readily available right where you shop.  I recently browsed through Mrs Meyer's Clean Day products online and was totally impressed!  What a fantastic line up of scents!  I will definately be on the hunt to find these great products in a store near me!  You should look, too. 

Yes, green is in.  So, jump on the bandwagon!  Join me in being clean and green!!

“I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Mrs. Meyer’s blogging program, making me eligible to get a $30 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here

New cast

Notice the new cast

Notice the new cast can swim!

He didn't need surgery, it looks like it will fix on its own ok, He got a short cast and they were able to make it waterproof! 

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Crayola Color Wonder products

I love Crayola's Color Wonder products.  When my son was recovering from surgery a few months ago, he relied on several Color Wonder products to keep him entertained during the 6 weeks he was not allowed to be up running around freely.  Now, as we begin our first year in home schooling, I have a need to keep my 3 year old busy during times that the school children and I need some quiet uniterrupted time.  Its a tough job!  I think Crayola could help, though!

I've entered to win a fantastic Crayola prize pack at Blessings Abound and you can too by using the link.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Flavorful low sodium family meals

I try to keep our menu really healthy.  I enjoy creating tasty meals for my family and am always trying new recipes.  One thing we all need to be conscience of is the sodium content of our food.  have you ever looked at labels on things like prepared frozen meals?  Its really amazing.  I have seen some of the "TV Dinner" type meals that have actually had over 80% of your RDA of sodium in them!  And you know those meals are not huge portions in any way!  80%!  If you use ingredients like condensed soups and those dry onion soup mixes....add up the total sodium in those recipes.  You might be amazed at how much it all adds up to! 

So how can you help reduce your sodium intake?  The first easy way is to taste first.  So many people have a habit of grabbing the salt shaker and shaking on salt before they even taste their food.   Sometime when you are at a restaurant watch people around you when they get their food.  You will probably see a lot of people doing just that...salting without tasting!  I would be willing to guess any food you get at a restuarant is not going to need salt.  The sodium content is probably pretty high when it arrives at your table!   

Next, when you cook eliminate the salt in recipes all together.  I very very rarely use salt in cooking.  Its not missed at all.  There are some things that pretty typically going to need some potatoes.  But even then I add very little and taste.  Rarely do I need whats called for in a recipe. 

When making things that need some spicing up, try something other than salt.  Mrs Dash makes seasoning blends that will make you forget the salt shaker all together!  How about some Mrs Dash on potatoes?  French fries with a dash of Mrs Dash!  And think skip deep frying altogether and make broiled potatoe slices and shake on the Mrs. Dash...a double win!

Buy ingredients labeled "no sodium added" or "low sodium".  From crackers to soups and broths, canned tomatoes to pickles, there are so many products these days available in "low sodium" options.  Most of the time you can use these salt-less choices and still not have to add any salt to your recipe.  Make sure when you use things like canned beans you rinse them in water before adding to your recipe.  This will help to remove some of that sodium. 

Consider making your own ingredients that tend to be high sodium when bought.  Broths are a great example.  Buying chicken parts and cooking them up with some herbs and spices takes a bit of time but is not hard at all.  You can get a great big quantity that will be so much lower in sodium than store bought broth.  Freeze what you don't need to use later.  Making other things like barbecue sauce is pretty simple too.

The new trend in frozen vegtalbes is to have them all seasoned in a bag that you just microwave steam and then serve.  Handy?  maybe.  But the sodium content is probably pretty bad..and we won't even go into the calories and fat in some of those sauces they can be in!  So make sure when you purchase frozen vegtables they are nothing more than simply vegtables!

Did you know that Mrs Dash comes in 15  flavors?  I didn't know they had such a big variety.  Doing most of my grocery shopping in pretty small towns you get used to having a low selection of items.  I am definately going to be looking for some of the Mrs Dash varieties I saw online, however. 

Mrs Dash has a new Citrus lime variety.  that would be all you need to add to some Boneless chicken breasts and it would be so easy, delicious and quick!

They have an extra spicy variety.  The weather is turning cold.  How about some Chili??  Use low sodium bean and rinse them.  Buy low sodium tomato ingredients.  Use no salt and at the end add that extra spicy Mrs Dash to taste.  If you have children skip adding it to the pot and season your bowl individually leaving it out of the little ones portions.

Have you ever made Refried beans without the refry in a crock pot?  I love doing them this way! 
  • 1 onion, peeled and halved
  • 3 cups dry pinto beans, rinsed
  • 1/2 fresh jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 9 cups water
  • Mrs Dash (try the extra spicy or the Southwest Chipolte!) to taste
  1. Place the onion, rinsed beans, jalapeno, garlic into a slow cooker. Pour in the water and stir to combine. Cook on High for 8 hours, adding more water as needed. Note: if more than 1 cup of water has evaporated during cooking, then the temperature is too high.
  2. Once the beans have cooked, strain them, and reserve the liquid. Mash the beans with a potato masher, adding the reserved water as needed to attain desired consistency.Add Mrs Dash to taste.
If you find your veggies a bit boring, try putting a bit of zip into them with Mrs Dash.  Green beans would be great with the Italian medley blend.  Broccoli yummy with lemon pepper blend.  Corn could use some garlic herb.

Get creative!  not only will your food taste great, you will be providing your family with wonderfully healthy meals!

I wrote this blog post while participating in the Mrs. Dash and TwitterMoms blogging program for a chance to get a $50 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

the Smart Trike Deluxe at my Organized Chaos

Don't you just love finding kids products that are so smart and practical that they can be used for years instead of months?  As I read about the Smart Trike Deluxe I was impressed by how you can use this ride on toy for years...from the time your baby is young to well over 2 years.  Not many baby or toddler products can make that claim!  Check out the giveaway for one at My Organized Chaos.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Enter now for Day 9 of Bumblewee's great giveaway~ Entries don't carry forward so if you entered yesterday don't forget to enter today.  click here to enter.
  • A Free Nursing Top every day for 30 days!
  • Enter and receive a 50% off coupon to BumbleWee Nursing Wear's sweepstakes items.
  • Get your friends to tell us that you recommended them to our contest for extra daily entries.
Every day is a new contest so come back daily for more chances to win.
Contest closes Sept 15, 2010

Thursday, August 19, 2010

day 5 of Bumblewee's giveaway

Did you enter for today's prize?  Its day 5!  Wonder who today's winner will be?  Maybe you or maybe me!!!

Enter here

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

50% off nursing clothing

So you probably know about Bumblewee's great nursing top giveaway (30 days and 30 tops given away).  But what you may not realize is that each time you enter you get a coupon code for 50% off a select list of clothing items.  So, even if you don't win this giveaway, you still win!

You can check it out here

wordless Wednesday...camping souvenir

A couple weeks ago we went camping.  Hours after we arrived Brennan recived this

Notice the arm.

When we got home from our trip he got his real cast which had to go up to his armpit.  He has to be monitored to make sure the bones are going to line back up without surgery.  So far it looks good.  Monday he has another appointment at his doctor and they will make the final decision then.  If all is ok he May get a shorter cast too.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Its day 4 did you enter?

Are you entering BumbleWee's giveaway for a nursing top each and everyday?  Yes, they will give away a top each day for 30 days!  You can enter here

Monday, August 16, 2010

nursing moms...check out this sweeps!

Bumbleweenursing is givingll away a nursing top a day for 30 days!  The sweeps started on August 15 so you still have nearly a month to enter. 

They have a fantastic line of nursing clothing that is very fashionable and functional. 

Friday, August 13, 2010

Mbretts tote/diaper bag

One thing I hate is disorganization.  If things are unorganized I even have trouble sleeping as it stays so heavy on my mind.  One area of disorganization that has driven me  crazy for years was my diaper bags.  The problem with most diapers bags is that they are basically just big pouches.  People tend to carry lots of small items in their diaper bags...pacificers, little tubes of diaper rash cream, lip gloss, cell phone, keys etc.  When you put little items like that in a big deep bag, they disappear.  It never fails you are in line at the store and you hear your phone ringing and you're digging, digging, searching, searching, taking things out, dropping things in search of that little cell phone lost somewhere under diapers and sippy cups and spare change of baby pants. 

My Mbretts tote bag has so totally changed that!  The interior is divided into several compartments.  It keeps everything in its place, ready to be found when needed.

This is a bit more than what I carry on a normal average trip from the house but wanted to show how much this tote holds, without overcrowding, and still being able to pull out anything I need without searching or removing half my bag contents to find it.

A water bottle, a sippy cup, a large wallet, keys, sunglasses, a pack of tissues, 2 different rash creams, a container of baby wipes, a changing pad, a good size baby blanket, a bib, a spare dress, 2 cloth diapers and a cloth diaper cover.

And organized:  water bottle and sippy get the outside compartments (although I normally use one for my sunglasses, cellphone and keys and one for a rolled up baby blanket), one compartment get the rash creams, tissue, bib.  One compartment gets my wallet, keys, cellphone, and makeup pouch.  One compartment gets the spare dress, 2 diapers, cover, changing pad, blanket. 

This is Mbretts small tote!  Although its roomy, you definately don't feel like you are carrying a suitcase.  Its very compact.  I can only imagine what their large tote would hold.  I would love the opportunity to find out! 

This is a photo of what my typical bag packed looks like:

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Wordless Wednesday......bonnet

Everytime I make a bonnet I swear its the cutest ever

This one is no exception

Her new dress I made is pretty

But that new bonnet....


A Living Doll!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Miliana in the paper

We went to the State fair on Monday.  Miliana eating her ear of corn caught the attention of a reporter. 

 Here is the link

Thursday, July 29, 2010

SmartKnit that's smart!

Do you have children that grab their socks and pull them on without regard what-so-ever to where the heel of the sock will fall?  Do they walk around with a heel lump on the top of their foot?  Do you wonder how they could possible be comfortable when the heel of their sock is stuffed into the side of their shoe?

SmartKnit socks can fix that!  Their socks have no heal in whatever way you pull them's the right way! 

Right now they have a great giveaway going on!  You can go here to enter.  It includes

3 Pair SmartKnitKIDS Seamless Socks
1 Amazon Kindle
6 Month Subscription to NetFlix
$100 Costco Card
20 Coloring Books
10 Kids' Reading Books
Supply of Purell Hand Sanitizers
5 Clorox Wipe Packages
250 Crayons
30 Pencils
15 Lightbulbs
15 Kids' Toothbrushes
6 Containers of Tang
and is worth more than $500!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

a small thing that makes the Unity great

I am hoping to win a Unity double stroller by Baby Planet.  Looking through the features today something caught my eye.  It has  5 point harnesses with comfort cover.  I have continued to have a problem with each of my children when they rode in their strollers.  They would wiggle free from their little lap belts and stand in the stroller.  My 3rd child actually stood in the stroller when I turned my back to pay for something at the cash register and his sister pulled the stroller back suddenly sending him tumbling out face first to the ground.  His face immediately swelled huge and he had a bloody nose and had bit his lip etc.  As he is screaming out of control over his injuries, he was about a year and a half I believe, the store made me wait around to fill out an accident report!  So I am thinking 5 point harnesses are just what this group of kids of mine needs!  Especially since I was pulling the baby off things she had climbed upon long before she was a year old.

Monday, July 26, 2010

I'd love to win this stroller!

really, reading through this list of features,
  • Patented "Easy-Steer" handle, improves maneuverability over traditional twin strollers
  • "Room-to-Walk" rear center wheel, improves walking stride
  • Lightweight aluminum frame
  • Ultra-Compact fold
  • 2 adult cup holders
  • 90% reclining seats
  •  5 point harness with comfort covers
  • "Peak-A-Boo" windows in canopies
  • Adjustable leg support
  • 5 ¾" "Easy-Roll" wheels
  • Front wheel swivel locks
  • 2 Auto fold locks
  • Oversized storage baskets
  • 1 month and up
  • Each child up to 55lbs; 130lbs max weight
  • Recycling Program
what's not to love?  I have been entering daily hoping to win this great Baby Planet Unity stroller. 

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Less than a week left!

If you were hoping to enter to win the Unity Stroller by Baby Planet remember you have less than a week to do so.  This great giveaway ends on the 31st.  One great feature that makes me want the Unity?  Well I was thrilled to learn it has patented "Easy-Steer" handle, that  improves maneuverability over traditional twin stroller.  As someone who has to struggle so hard to steer my current stroller this would be great.  Yes, my knees will ache so bad it has me in tears after I use my stroller because I have to put so much strain in them to direct my stroller where I want it to go.  An easy steering stroller....what a dream!!

Friday, July 23, 2010

great idea, Baby Planet!

have you ever been pushing a stroller, especially the light weight umbrella type, and kept stepping on the back wheels?  It happens to me all the time and its annoying!!!  Well, thank you, Baby Planet for thinking of this problem when you designed your Unity double stroller.  It has a special "room to walk" back wheel location that allows you to have a better stride without stepping on your stroller! 

I am excitedly entering to win one of these strollers using this link

Thursday, July 22, 2010

something I love about the Unity Stroller

Today when I browsed through the great features on Baby Planet's Unity stroller I noticed that the weight limit is 55 pounds per side!  Most strollers dont' go above 40 lbs per seat.  Plus you get 130 lbs max weight in the stroller that means 55 in one seat, 55 in the other and PLUS you can haul 20 lbs of "gear" underneath (yes, you know you lug around that much with you regularly!) 

To someone, like me, who has big babies and toddlers, this is great news.  My 3 year old, who regularly needs to ride in a stroller when we are spending a whole day out and about, weighs over 40 lbs. 

I am hoping to win this great stroller in this giveaway 

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Beautiful baby slings

If you are looking for a baby sling to wear your baby in, I would like to suggest ModMum.  They have a great selection of some of the prettiest slings I have ever seen.  Here are some of my faves.

I am quite sure you will find one to your liking!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Enter to win a Baby Planet Stroller Daily

Did you remember to enter for the Unity Stroller from Baby Planet today?  You can tweet, blog and update your facebook status for entries.  The Unity looks like a fantastic stroller.  Check it out here.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Great features on the Unity stroller

As I read through the list of features on the Baby Planet Unity Stroller, I was impressed by its well thought out design.  What are some of my favorite features? 

An oversized  basket....with 5 kids I always have a lot of stuff the haul around with me.  I need lots of storage room.

An adult cup holder.  A small thing, yes, but I have never had a stroller with a cup holder on it and it makes it impossible for me to get a drink while out.  

90 percent recline.  My current stroller barely reclines at all.  Its not easy at all for a little one to nap in there.  A nice flat recline would be great to have.

Those are the 3 that most caught my eye, I think.  What are your faves? 

You won't want to miss a fantastic giveasway on Baby Planet's facebook page

Friday, July 16, 2010

Looking for a double stroller?

I have been browsing double strollers for over a year now, wishing I could purchase one.  I have compared and admired about every double out there I think.  When I saw the giveaway by Baby Planet, I entered right away.  I definately wanted a chance to win this stroller.  If you would love to be the owner of a Planet Baby Unity Stroller as well, check out the above link to get your entries in.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Win a great stroller at Baby Planet

By clicking here  you can enter to win a Unity Sport double stroller.  

 I like it in the Charcoal color..but maybe you would prefer the Terra Cotta?  Don't worry, the color is winner's choice!

Here is a list of the Unity's great features:
  • Stroller
  • Unity collection
  • Constructed of aluminum frame
  • 90pct recline
  • Double Seat
  • Canopy pocket
  • Double lock
  • Dual breaks
  • Carry handle
  • Peek-a-boo window
  • Canopy hinge lock
  • Adult cup holder
  • Automatic folding lock
  • Smooth fold hinges
  • Pull-handle fold assist
  • Oversize basket
  • Ergonomic padded handle grips
  • Extended flip-out visor
  • 5-Point adjustable shoulder harness
  • Removable harness covers
  • Extra-wide seating
  • 8-Way adjustable leg support
  • Swivel lock front wheels
  • 4 wheel suspension
  • 7.25'' All-terrain wheels
Contest ends on July 31st so there is plenty of time to enter!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Special Homemakers Event!

I love Happily Domestic's special blog events.   Soon they will be hosting a special for all us homemakers! 

There will be all sorts of wonderful reviews of products that make life easier for the homemaker and mother. learn some wonderful homemaking skills along the way and of course you will have the chance to win some wonderful prizes for your kitchen and home.