timi & leslie: Not your mama’s boring diaper bags!

If you have kids or friends with kids, chances are you have heard of timi & leslie bags.  I’ve drooled over them for years now, to be quite honest.  Never before have I actually owned one, until last month.  Guess what bag I used to tote my stuff around LA when I was there for the Cars 2, Winnie the Pooh and The Help media events?   The Dawn bag, in Raspberry, from timi & leslie.  I got so many compliments on it!

Caution: only wear this bag if you don’t mind getting tons of compliments! It’s made from easy to clean faux leather (PVC free) and features our custom hardware in a gold finish. Dawn comes with many functional and fashionable accessories and features: [click to continue…]

“Make a Spectacle of Yourself” and Win a $25 Visa Gift Card (Giveaway)

Eye care and health are an important part of our overall health and well being.  We need to take care of all of ourselves, and many times, people overlook their eyes.

The Think About Your Eyes Campaign is inviting consumers to “Make a Spectacle of Yourself” with an exciting new Facebook contest. The contest, part of the campaign’s ongoing efforts to promote eye health awareness, encourages entrants to protect their eyes with proper eyewear that blocks 100 percent of UV rays and to show off their eyewear by submitting a photo.  This campaign strikes close to home for my family because my husband’s eyes are very photo sensitive and he has to be very careful about what sunglasses and eyewear he purchases in order to protect his eyes from the sun.  We have a suspiscion that our son also shares this sensitivity.  We are very proactive with all three of our children and will be advocating for eye exams regularly as they grow up. [click to continue…]

Petunia Pickle Bottom Ergo Baby Carrier

All of you baby wearing Mammas are probably very familiar with the name Ergo.  If you have even dabbled into the world of babies carriers then you have heard of Ergo.  They set the standard for a structured carrier, with the flexibility to wear your baby from infancy through toddlerhood.  It also allows you the ability to choose how you would like to carrier your baby, be it front carry, hip carry or back carry.  I  have tried many, many carriers and slings in my days and have always wanted an Ergo.  When I saw that they recently came out with Petunia Pickle Bottom patterns, that was it.  I HAD  to have one!

petunia pickle bottom ergo

For those of you who have never used a baby carrier or would like to learn more, I HIGHLY recommend them.  I personally don’t even own a stroller anymore.  They are so great and especially handy during the first year of life.  I never felt so bonded to my babies as when I was carrying them around all day on my chest.  There is such a closeness that you can never reproduce.  If I had been toting my baby around in a stroller all day I would have missed out.  Carriers are also really convenient.  I would just put my carrier on at home, hop in the car with the kids, and when we arrived at our destination all I had to do was pop the baby in the carrier and we were off.  Never once did I have to lug a stroller out of the back of my car, or maneuver through doorways.  I ALWAYS ALWAYS use a carrier at the grocery store.  Not only can I avoid the dreaded car seat/grocery cart maneuver, but I find that strangers are far less likely to touch your baby if you are wearing  them.  OK, enough of my rambling.  Just try it, you’ll never go back.

I was fortunate enough to be able to test out the Peaceful Portifino patterned Ergo for this review along with the organic infant insert.  Can I just say that upon first impression, the fabric is absolutely gorgeous!  The pattern is a lovely sky blue and gray with a white flower pattern.  I will be able to wear this carrier with almost any outfit that I own.  Also, the colors are not so light that it will show every stain.  The Petunia Pickle Bottom Ergo also comes  in the Evening in Innsbruck  pattern, which is nice if you wear a lot of black, or perhaps, if you want your significant other to wear it occassionally (if you can give it up).  Also in Heavenly Holland, which has a beautiful pink tulip pattern with bright green leaves on a gray background.

My Impressions:

I found that all of the straps were very comfortably padded, without being bulky.  Also, they were extremely easy to adjust.  If you are switching this carrier between people, it does not take but a moment to personalize the fit.  My husband even tried this one out (even though he wasn’t thrilled with my pattern choice), and found it very comfortable and easy to use.

My toddler LOVED the back carry position and would stay in it all day if I let him.  With just one or two practice sessions I was able to easily position him into the back position by myself without any difficulty.  In addition, it was very easy to transition to the front carry and hip carry positions.  My 2 year old definitely preferred the hip and back carry positions, but the front carry is perfect for younger babies.  I love how easily interchangeable the positions are.  The carrier came with a nice booklet, complete with instructions for each carry type.  All instructions were easy to follow and concise.  In addition, the Ergo website has an entire section of written and video tutorials on how to use the Ergo carrier.

I also tried out the organic Infant Insert.  This is used for young babies, newborn to 4-6 months.  The infant insert is used to provide more support to the head, neck and spine of very young babies while there are in the carrier.  My new little baby isn’t quite here yet, but I was able to try this out on a friends baby.   It was extremely easy to use and just slipped right into the carrier without difficulty.  I can say that the baby seemed very supported and comfortable in the carrier with the insert.  The instruction manual does a  great job of describing how to use the insert and gives tips/tricks to make your first experience easier.

The ERGObaby carrier is easy to use and babies love it, but is it comfortable for mom and dad?  YES!  Don’t be deterred by your impressions of other carriers (you know the one I’m talking about).  This carrier is NOTHING like the Baby B- – – .  The supportive shoulder and hip straps take all of the pressure off your upper back and shoulders.  The bulk of the babies weight is transferred to your core, allowing you to wear your baby for hours without any pain or discomfort.  I am not a large or muscular person, but can easily carry my 30 lb. toddler in this thing for well over an hour.

Here is some more detailed information on the ERGObaby Carrier

ERGObaby Carrier

  • “With separate Infant Insert, the all-in-one carrier that can be used for all your babywearing years
  • Allows parents to maintain closeness with baby while attending to daily activities
  • May be worn in front, back and hip positions
  • Comfortable for parent; balances baby’s weight to parents’ hips and shoulders
  • Supports correct sitting position for baby’s hip, pelvis, and spine growth
  • Soft, smooth feel for baby
  • Ensured safety and security for baby
  • Maximum durability and fit
  • Ergonomic design
  • Fits most adult body types, from 5′ to 6’5″
  • Carries babies from infancy (with Infant Insert) to 45lbs.
  • 100% Organic cotton
  • Coordinates with ERGObaby accessories as part of the ERGObaby HandsFree System
  • Also coordinates with Petunia Pickle Bottom accessories for a wide range of matching options”

Ergo offers several different versions of their carrier to cater to different uses:

Performance, Sport, Organic, Ergobaby Options and Original

One very lucky reader will win their choice of ERGObaby Carrier!!!!

Mandatory Entry: Visit Ergo and tell me your favorite style.

Extra Entries:

1. Follow ERGObaby on Facebook
2. Follow me on GFC, Facebook, Twitter or RSS/Email Subscription (+1 each)
3. Share this giveaway on any social networking site (leave URL of your post please!! hint: right click the time stamp!!) 2x/day at least 1 hour apart
4. Leave a comment on any non giveaway post +1/post up to 5 comments

5. Tweet this giveaway: #win a#baby #carrier of your choice @ERGObaby from @mamatomjr @jendpt http://wp.me/p1qA6G-1TU @FollowPetunia (can be done 2x day at least 1hour apart)

This giveaway will end on June 25, 2011 at midnight, EST. US only. Winner to be chosen randomly. Winner has 48 hours to respond to my email or a new winner will be chosen.

I received a sample of this product to facilitate my review. All opinions expressed are my own.[ad#glam between posts]

Guess what the Mavens have for you NOW???

PhotobucketThe Mavens of Money are always looking for ways to make your life easier and save you money. We have done it again! This time we are giving a way a KINDLE!

That’s right! Now is your chance to get a Kindle for FREE! All you need to do is….follow us!  Just fill out this form or the form embedded below- easy, peasy.  We don’t share your information with anyone but ourselves to verify entries, and of course the winner will need to share his or her shipping info with us so we can get the KINDLE on its way to you!! [click to continue…]

BIG Savings on Strider Bikes

Strider Sports PREbike

Comes in Blue, Red and Pink

$79.00 PLUS  Free Shipping PLUS get $10 off coupon good for next purchase over $50!!

If your toddler can walk, your toddler can ride a Strider Sports PREbike. The Strider Sports PREbike teaches your child balance and coordination, developing glittering confidence. Trikes and bikes with training wheels simply can’t do this. Traditional bicycles place too much focus on learning to pedal – skimping on developing your child’s motor skills. And traditional bikes are heavy, clunky and difficult for toddlers to control. The Strider Sports PREbikeTM is the natural progression from a ride-on or push toy. Yes, bike riding becomes a easy and fun when you teach your child balance and coordination before pedaling. With NO pedals and NO training wheels, your toddler powers the Strider Sports PREbikeTM using their feet safely on the ground; allowing them to learn to balance a bike at their own pace. So ditch the tricycle and training wheels, and teach your child to ride a bike sooner and safer with a Strider Sports PREbike.

I didn’t have a balance bike before quite recently.  I wish I had gotten one sooner.  Busy has been on a bike with training wheels for 3.5 years.  Less than 2 hours on a balance bike like this and she ditched the training wheels.  Crazy, but amazing.  They are awesome- and my little guy who can’t quite pedal a bike but desperately wants big kid stuff- he feels so very COOL on his bike- with or without the pedals! 

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TwirlyGirl® Reversible Twirly Racer Dress & UnderTwirl™

TwirlyGirl® sent my Busy girl a Reversible TwirlyGirl® Racer Dress in The Fairy Gardens print. They also thought to send a pair of Hoppin Heather UnderTwirl™ Shorts to keep her underwear as underwear and not visible to anyone when she’s twirling (which is nonstop when she wears this dress).

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Bright Starts

As a seasoned mom I have learned a few tricks along the way. Whenever I run across a product, tip or trick that is going to make my life easier I make sure to file it away. I find that when my life is easier, everyone is happier and things just run smoother. Like the old saying, “if momma aint happy, aint nobody happy”. With a third baby on the way, all of which will be age 5 and under, I have no choice but to organize my life.

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