Thursday, March 28, 2013

How to Better Label Your Sippy Cups- Inchbug




Inchbug sent a complimentary set of labels for us to review. Here are my thoughts and experiences. 

  Weston doesn't go to a daycare per say but he does attend the gym daycare a few times a week so that I can get in a great workout (and a few minutes to go to the bathroom by myself). Until recently I had been writing his name in permanent marker around the rim of the cup. This method was leaving the cups looking pretty ugly and leaving me frustrated because it would partially wash off and then I would have to rewrite it again. On a search for a solution I came across Inch Bug Orbit labels.



  The Orbit labels are custom, personalized, and reusable labels that can be placed on a variety of bottles, sippy cups, snacks, and other items. With these labels there is no more faded markers, yucky adhesive, or peeling labels. I really love the ease of use of these labels!!! They are easy to take off and put on. They also stretch to accommodate many different products. When I read about all of the features of Orbit Labels I was even further sold.



Special Things About Orbits Labels
These Aren't Your Ordinary Sticky Labels- They are:

Dishwasher Safe
Microwave Safe
Can be boiled and sterilized
Constructed with FDA approved non toxic materials
Fits snug around containers- Tiny hands can't pry them off
Will never feed, peel, or fade away.

Fits a sippy cup or a wine bottle (not that you need your toddlers name on your wine bottle) haha. 

    Labeling shampoo, toiletries  or even pool items  for the child going off to camp would also be another great idea for use of these labels. While I know I don't have to worry about sending Weston off to camp for some time I like buying products that I can see a use for even way down the line. 


Disclosure: I received a complimentary product to review. All opinions are 100% my own I am disclosing this in accordance with FTC regulations.


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Reasonably Priced Preppy Chic-Bellevue Newport



Bellvue Newport kindly sent me some complimentary products to review. This review is written based on my thoughts and experiences with the product. 

    Living in the deep south, I have noted that monograms are quite the in thing around these parts. These Louisiana gals monogram things I never would have even considered, for example: puffer vests, yoga pants, and purses. Florida friends, back me up here, no one back home monograms their yoga pants! All of the above things stated, if you are looking for a little more monogram (or just a little sparkly pizzazz) in your life and at a pretty good price, you may want to check out Bellevue Newport.

   Bellevue Newport is a little online store based out of Newport, RI that offers chic costume jewelry  fun monogrammed items, and other adorable preppy accessories. They have reasonable prices and FREE shipping which is always a great deal. The exact statement on their website regarding refunds is "Customer service is our number one priority. If there's a problem - we will fix it!"  I have said it before and I will say it again I really appreciate it when any company that puts the customer first!

  So letting the products speak for themselves here are two of their products that I thought were cute on the website.

Bitsy Bow Studs
Love a good bow accessory!

Anchor Studs
I am picturing these with a navy and white stripped shirt for spring. Love a preppy nautical look! 

   I received the Ciarla Studs and the monogrammed Straw Clutch to trial. The earrings are really pretty although I must admit I was surprised by their large size. I went back to the website and I realized that this was totally my fault. If I had carefully read the product description, I would have noted that they are clearly labels as 1 inch in diameter. Lesson here, when shopping for products online read product descriptions thoroughly!



  The clutch is monogrammed nicely. The stitching is very well done. I like the little chain like handle that you can choose to use or tuck in and hide.  I think the inner lining leaves a little to be desired but then again this is not a luxury bag that is going to last you for years. This is more a trendy, fun, summer piece that you can switch in and out of your wardrobe at an affordable price. In my opinion there is nothing wrong with that at the modest price point of $34.00 (including monogram and shipping).

     In conclusion if your looking for some preppy chic to freshen up your wardrobe this season I think Bellevue Newport is a great affordable place to look. You can enter to win a $25.00 credit to the website now by entering the rafflecopter below. 

Disclosure: I was provided complimentary products in order to accurately review the products and services this site offers. All opinions are 100% my own. I am disclosing this in accordance to FTC regulations.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, March 18, 2013

Shari's Berries- Great Mothers Day Treats

   

   This year Mother's day is coming early for us by necessity.  The reason we aren't celebrating on the traditional Mother's Day date is that my Mother is actually in town now! Rather than worry about mailing her a gift I figured I would order her a little something fun and special for her stay at our home. Shari's Berries has a variety of delicious looking options to choose from.  When sorting through the options on their website I had a hard time choosing between chocolate covered strawberries, a fruit and nut assortment, a box of cupcakes, or even the Gardener's Delight Gift Package. With options for the foodie, gardener, and coffee drinker I think that many Mothers would be very happy receiving something from Shari's Berries. For the sake of disclosure (especially in lieu of the new FTC rules) yes, I received a complementary item in exchange for writing a review about the product and service I was provided. 



 When Weston was born a wonderful friend (Thanks again Michelle) sent us an assortment of baby blue chocolate colored strawberries. They were seriously delicious but I wanted to personally experience what else Shari's Berries had to offer. After all of hemming and hawing I chose the Deluxe Snack Attack. Can you say Yuuuummmmo (and can you also tell I have been watching too much Rachel Ray)? The Deluxe Snack Attack arrived on the date that I chose. Its also important to note that with this company you can choose the exact date that you want things to be delivered. I think this is so important especially when the item you are ordering is perishable. The basket that the snacks came in was great quality and the snacks were plentiful and delicious. This really was a very nice treat. My only reservation about this item was/is the price. This is not a cheap gift at $64.98 plus shipping. While I wish this item was more affordable, it is important to mention that you can usually find coupons to help you out on price if you are interested. 



Disclosure: This review was written about a complementary product that I received from Berries.com. All opinions are 100% my own. 

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Mess Prevention with the Nuby iMonster Snack Keeper


Nuby kindly sent me a complimentary iMonster snack keeper for review. These are my thoughts and experiences with the product. 

   I love any product that prevents mess. If they created a giant (safe) trash bag that I could stuff my child into to keep my house clean I would. I really would. That being said, no such thing exists, so I have to do my best with what I've got. One of the things that helps me keep snacks where they belong is the Nuby iMonster snack keeper. 


The Nuby iMonster snack keeper is bright and playful. It resembles more of a toy than a meal time accessory and I like this because it keeps snack time fun. The monster's teeth help keep snacks inside the bowl rather than on my floor or distributed throughout my car. The lid screws in place which is great to keep prying little fingers from pulling the whole thing apart. Those same fingers hold on well to the monsters arms which are a great hand hold as he totes this item around with him. This snack cup is also top rack dishwasher safe which is a necessity for many busy moms like myself! Hand washing is just for the birds if you ask me!

If you are interested in finding the iMonster Snack Cup you can purchase it online at Burlington, Amazon, or Buy Baby Direct. 

You can connect with Nuby on any of their social media platforms using the icons below! 
 Disclaimer: I was provided a free product to trial as a part of the Nuby Mom Blogger Program. All opinions are 100% my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC regulations. 


Tuesday, March 12, 2013

How to Clean and Store Your Humidifier at The End of Flu Season


 I think many parents are already aware that using a cool mist humidifier to help minimize cold symptoms is recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics. Humidifiers are often very helpful in the winter months when colds, flus, and viruses seem to unfortunately be at every turn. When used properly cool mist humidifiers can help keep secretions thin, prevent nose bleeds, ease a dry cough, moisten chapped lips, and overall make your child more comfortable.



   The reason I am writing this post is because I don't think it is commonly understood how very important it is to clean and store humidifiers properly when not in use. Clearly, a parent would not want to open up their humidifier in a time of need and discover mold or even worse unknowingly use a moldy/mildewy/bacteria filled humidifier. As the end of cold and flu season nears, I thought it would be helpful to go over some tips and tricks for proper storage and cleansing of your humidifier.



Steps For End of Season Cleaning and Storage of Your Humidifier 

1. Every part of the tank and basin should be disinfected with a water and white vinegar solution
 (A few cap fulls of white vinegar in the tank and fill the rest with water). Don't forget to clean the lid! 

2. Let the solution sit for 30 minutes.

3. Thoroughly rinse the tank and basin.

4. Allow to air dry COMPLETELY with the cap off. 

5 Store in a dry location.


If you have additional questions about your Crane Humidifier and/or proper use or storage you can connect with them on Facebook and Twitter. If you would like to win a Crane Humidifier please enter the rafflecopter below!

  a Rafflecopter giveaway


Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Crane. All opinions are my own however the informational content regarding cleaning and storage of  humidifiers has been kindly provided by Crane. 




Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Great Times, A Worthy Cause, and Important Mom Topics

   This blog has been neglected slightly. I have way less giveaways than usual posted and my goal of posting everyday of the week has kind of gotten lost in the mess of life. What have I been doing instead, you may wonder? For starters, Weston and I have been having tons of fun. We have made some new friends, been visiting the park regularly, and even started going to parenting classes at the local Parenting Center. With our days so full it just leaves less time for regular blogging. 


   This past Saturday was the New Orleans Moms Blog's Egg Hunt to benefit the March of Dimes. Preparation for the hunt was lots of fun and some hard work too. I ordered 2,000 eggs from Oriental Trading but never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that they would come needing assembly. As a public service announcement to anyone hosting an egg hunt, please note that Oriental Trading eggs do not come as they do in Target. You have to put together every, single, blessed one, of those eggs.


  A few years ago when my husband asked me what my dream life looked like I told him that I hoped to stay at home (mostly) with my babies, work PRN (as I want to), and host events for The March of Dimes. The reality of that dream is that I know NOTHING about hosting events or how to go about doing so. This past couple weeks I really enjoyed learning from others about hosting events, handling the logistics, and even how to announce things tactfully and with grace. There certainly is an art to all of these things! While I may never personally host an event, 2,000 egg assembly aside, it was a really fulfilling week!  The culmination of all of our work was the hunt itself which brought crisp air, warm sunshine, 150 smiling kiddos, and TONS of eggs. I am so proud to be a part of this fun and dynamic group group of women!  Together with the help of our wonderful local sponsors, we were able to donate over $1,000 to the March of Dimes!

                               

   Even though I have not been blogging here as much as I would have liked, I have been a blogging maniac over on the New Orleans Moms Blog page. It isn't that I planned on posting over there three times last week its just kind of how the chips fell. I really put a lot of time and effort into all  three of my posts over there and would love to hear your thoughts on these very important topics! 

My Posts On The New Orleans Moms Blog Last Week 

A Local Mompreneur Feature-  I love learning more about multitasking Moms who unknowingly inspire us to do more and be more. Heather, a local Mom entrepreneur who owns The Palm Tree Playground, answers questions about family life, business, and the art of handling it all. 


Celebrate Your Birth Experience- I have recently discovered through talking with other women that MANY feel guilty about their birth experience or breastfeeding journey. I honestly find this so sad. I feel like I am beating a dead horse but I want to jump and down and scream over and over again, "Embrace your story, it is your own, be proud, your an amazing Mom!" The New Orleans Moms Blog partnered with a local birth hospital to celebrate each of our birth stories. I LOVE this idea and can truly say that I cried reading each and every one of these stories. Check it out to read about the thought process and issues which lead my to decide on a c-section! 


To Work Or Not To Work?- Continuing on the subject of "Mom guilt", many Mothers, including myself, struggle with the decision to go back to work or not. Being that I have experienced life as both a working  Mother and a stay at home Mother, I thought it would be fun to compare my own personal pro's and con's of both situations. The grass is not always greener folks and no choice is an easy choice! 

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Skechers- A Review and Giveaway

  

    Remember the TOMS craze? It seemed like there was a time period when I lived in Miami that there was a pair on almost everyone's feet. From toddlers to soccer moms to hipsters they were just EVERYWHERE! I wondered at the time if the reason  for the fashion wild fire was the message of social consciousness, (for every pair purchased they gave a pair to a needy child) or truly the style? Or was it perhaps that TOMS seemed to be the cheapest shoe available for purchase at Nordstroms? Whatever the case, taking a page out of the TOMS playbook, Skechers has now come out with a line of shoes called BOBS.

   The acronym BOBS stands for Benefiting Others By Shoes. Skechers has vowed to donate a pair of shoes for every pair purchased to Souls4Shoes. This organization will distribute BOBS unisex children’s shoes to communities and organizations in need throughout the United States and as needed for international disaster relief and crisis situations. To date Skechers has donated over 3 million pairs of shoes. While the message and choice of charity is not unique, I think it is very admirable when any company sets up their business plan in such a way that it benefits the community at large.  




   For the sake of full disclosure I do not  buy shoes based on what companies are socially conscious  My Father, a card carrying Republican, who tried to teach me not to eat Ben and Jerry's (huge democrats) would not a appreciate this. He indeed believes if you stand for nothing you will fall for everything! I am a woman though, I buy shoes based on looks and comfort alone. I assure you that my shoe choice NEVER has anything to do with politics or goodwill. While I applaud BOBS and Skechers for doing the right thing from a social standpoint, I must admit that "goodwill" marketing alone would not drive me to buy these shoes.

   So lets talk about the style and quality of BOBS. The good news here is that there are a few styles to choose from. The standard TOM-esque shoe closed toe shoe (No that's not a technical term) is available as well as moccasins, boat shoes, and ballerinas.  I am pretty sure there is something for everyone in this collection. From teenager, to hippy, to modern mama the wide variety of styles is great.



  I received the Women's Bobs Care Free in Gold. I chose them because they looked comfy, were a nice light gold color, and had some character to them. When I received the moccasins, at first I was really happy with the quality and feel of them. I thought that they would be the perfect throw on and run to the grocery store. "Mom shoes", if you will.  What I did not count on with these shoes was that they would fall apart within the first hour of wear. Yes, my Bobs moccasins fell apart at the playground as I gently walked around supervising my boy playing. To Skechers credit, they kindly sent me another set of shoes, The Go Run Bionic. 


     When I received my Go Run Bionics I was amazed at how light they were. At an average weight of only 5.8 oz (for a womens size 7) these are some seriously feather light shoes. My first thought was how wonderful these shoes would be for traveling. More than once I have had to empty the contents of my suitcase into a carry-on because of overweight luggage (which is so annoying). I think tennis shoes are often one of the heavier items in my suitcase. I look forward to taking the Go Run Bionics with me on my next trip and therefore lightening my load.

   When you read reviews of Go Run Bionics they are often favored by people that prefer as little of a shoe as possible. It seems that those who prefer this shoe are those that are seeking a shoe with very little structure or weight to it. For my $80 dollars though, I personally would prefer to have more support and padding. I understand that support and padding are a tradeoff with the weight of the shoe and therefore this is a choice based on personal preference.



  If you would like a chance to win a pair of women's BOBS please enter the rafflecopter below.


Disclosure: I was provided complimentary products for review in order to properly write this post. All opinions are 100% my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with FTC regulations.



Monday, March 4, 2013

My Ticket to Mom Survival of Cold and Flu Symptoms- Vicks DayQuil and NyQuil #sponsored

    One of the unfortunate parts of Motherhood is that the job is 24 hour a day, 7 days a week, with no option to call in sick. Knowing that I have no choice but to preform as a Mom, even in the most dire of circumstances, I have a strong drive to try to avoid illness. Foods with questionable sell by dates are immediately tossed (GI illness is the worst) and I thrive on frequent hand washing and hand sanitizing. Sadly, even with my best efforts we all know that becoming sick is unavoidable.


   When I am coughing, sneezing, achy, and/or feverish I often need medicine to help me cope with the symptoms so that I may function as well as a sick Mom possibly can. I always turn to Vicks DayQuil and NyQuil, the #1 pharmacist recommended brand for adult cough/cold/flu relief. After all, no matter how sick I am, there is still a little boy in my life that needs breakfast, fresh diapers, kisses, and attention. I love that DayQuil treats my symptoms without making me sleepy and NyQuil helps alleviate my symptoms allowing me to sleep easier.


    It is no secret that I am a nurse however I would like you to understand that I am not recommending these medicines to you based on my medical background. Instead I am writing this post because, as a Mom, I truly depend on these medicines to help me function, even when I have a terrible cold or flu. As a Mom I also read product labels for effective (and safe content). I won't name specific product names but there are several products on the market that claim to help prevent colds or treat congestion that lack specific ingredients proven to do so. When I need relief I turn to DayQuil and NyQuil because they contain medicines that have been proven to help treat symptoms.

DayQuil contains: Acetaminophen for pain relief and fever reduction, Dextromethorphan HBr to suppress a cough, and Phenylephrine HCl for nasal congestion. 

NyQuil contains: Acetaminophen for aches and fever,  Dextromethorphan HBr for cough suppression, and Doxylamine Succinate for sneezing and a runny nose.

DayQuil and NyQuil are both available in liquid and liquicap form. I much prefer the liquicaps. For some reason I have always been a gagger when it comes to liquid medicine flavors. You can find DayQuil and NyQuil in stores nationwide, anywhere Vicks Products are sold. 




If you have questions or would like to learn more about DayQuil and NyQuil you can visit them on their website 

                                                                Important Notes Regarding This Post:                                                                                       
  • Remember before trying any new medication make sure to check with your doctor & follow the proper recommended course of treatment.
  • Nyquil is not recommended for children younger than 12. Please be sure to consult your physician before giving DayQuil & NyQuil to children.
  • When using DayQuil/NyQuil, be sure to follow the usage guidelines for warnings and dosage directions or visit http://www.vicks.com for more information.
  • All of the above opinions are based upon my own personal experiences, your experiences may be different. 

I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Vicks DayQuil & NyQuil. I received product samples and a promotional item as a thank you for participating.”


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