3 ways to enjoy Cheerios Protein #CheeriosProtein

There’s really two things I eat for breakfast regularly. I’m pretty boring and pretty basic. It’s almost always eggs or cereal with milk. Eggs are broken yolk, over hard- basically, cook ’em until they are rubbery and then I’m happy.  With cereal, plain is where it’s always been for me.  One of my favorite cereals since childhood and even today is Cheerios.  I eat them for breakfast and I eat them for snacks on the go.  I love them.  My family loves them too.  Some of them like Honey Nut Cheerios more than the classic version, but me? Original.  The classic. That ever familiar yellow box. When Cheerios reached out and asked if I’d like to try their new Cheerios Protein, I was willing, although the 5 year old deep inside my head was all “I’m not going to like it as much as my yellow box variety!”

Cheerios Protein. There are clusters of Oats & Honey, and Cinnamon Almond. Clusters of crunch.  Clusters of yum.

Move over, regular Cheerios. You’ve been replaced.

cheerios-protein

Who doesn’t want more protein for breakfast (ok maybe kids don’t, but adults, we have to pay attention to things like this!) ? We have a really busy schedule in the summer, with swim team practice, tennis lessons for the kids and then swim and dive lessons.  All daily.  We need a GREAT start to our day even in the summer to keep our energy up! During the school year, my kids are early risers, and they are done with breakfast by 6:30 am.  Their lunch waves aren’t until 11:40 and later at our school, so I really try to make sure they have a great breakfast every day.

 

Three ways to enjoy Cheerios Protein

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In a bowl with milk (Note: Tastes amazing with Silk Almond Milk!)

On top of a bowl of yogurt (Yogurt is all of our mid morning snack in this family, and the kids will be happy to have some of these to sprinkle on top for their snack at school.  We are all about the crunch in this house, and Cheerios Protein delivers on that).

Plain as a snack (My favorite. The kids and I have been packing these in our snack bags for the pool almost daily. So good).

cheerios-protein-infographic

So why am I so excited about the new Cheerios Protein? Well, getting this family going in the morning means that I need to get going. I need the protein and energy as much as the kids.  We ALL need it.  More protein gives us the energy to do what we need to do and keep our bellies full! So many parents (even me, at times) don’t feel that their familygets enough protein in the morning. 2 out of every 5 see the time it takes to make a protein-rich breakfast as a barrier, making way for Cheerios Protein as the time-saving solution. Sure, a big spread would be nice, but it’s rare for anyone to have the time to make that kind of breakfast let alone sit down to eat it these days.

While 9 out of ten (89%) parents see the importance of starting the day with a protein-rich breakfast, half (51%) admit there isn’t time to prepare it. We all have places to be and things to do.  It’s how our society is.  Having cereal that’s giving me- and the family- an extra boost of protein in our cereal means we’re heading off to those places prepared for the day (at least, our bellies are) with enough fuel to last the morning.

Have you tried the new Cheerios Protein? Which is your favorite?

 

 

This post is brought to you by our friends at Cheerios.  Opinions are my own.

Things to do before you travel #LifeLockSafety

Being prepared for a vacation can make or break the entire experience. If you’re anything like me, you spend countless hours preparing to make sure that nothing is forgotten. I make lists. I make lists of my lists. I go over and over the luggage, to be sure that each article of clothing is included. Next, I check that we each have everything we need in our carry on bags, all of our personal hygiene items are packed, we’ve got cash, cards, itinerary’s, tickets, hotel reservations, etc.   Once I’m satisfied that we’ve packed each and everything we need, I inevitably spend the entire ride to the airport wondering whether we’ve remembered to close the garage door, shut off the iron, and lock all the doors.

One thing I never thought about, however, was that traveling actually leaves you even more open to another kind of threat. Identity theft. Advertisement Luckily, I have peace of mind against identity theft. I have LifeLock! LifeLock is at the forefront of identity theft protection.

things-to-do-before-you-travel

In fact, a recent article on their website gives some awesome tips to help protect you against identity theft during the summer travel season.   Here are a few of the my favorites things to do before you travel from the LifeLock list:

Stop mail: Call your local post office and have your mail stopped while on vacation. Letting it pile up, or even having a neighbor deliver it, is an indicator to predators that you are not home.  

Call your bank and credit card companies: Be sure to alert them that you will be traveling. Alerting them to when and where you will be traveling will help them to monitor your accounts right along with you.

Don’t tell the world you’re traveling: Save your travel photos until you return home, when possible, and be careful sharing on social networks that you will be traveling.

stolen-identity-book

These are just a few of the many great tips provided by LifeLock. Be sure to read the full list here. LifeLock also has a new book out called  “Stolen Identity: What Anyone with a Name, Birthdate and Social Security Number Needs to Know Now.” Identity theft is one of the most widespread and fast-evolving crimes, but many people don’t realize that it goes far beyond having a credit card number stolen. It can jeopardize your healthcare, block you from receiving the tax refund you’re due, interfere with a job or loan, and even run up debt for your children or elderly parents. Learn more about the alarming ways identity in which thieves operate today and what you can do to reduce your chances of having your identity stolen.

I value the peace of mind I get with LifeLock, and would love to share it with all of my readers. Hop on over to the LifeLock.com site and use the promo code “LifeLockSafety” for 10%!

lifelock logo

This post is brought to you by our partnership with LifeLock. Opinions are my own.

One of my readers will win the new LifeLock new book, “Stolen Identity: What Anyone with a Name, Birthdate and Social Security Number Needs to Know Now.”

How to Get Started Geocaching

Geocaching is a great activity to do with the family.  It gets you outdoors, walking around and makes you use your mind.  We started Geocaching a year ago and we still are loving it. If you are wondering how to get started geocaching, read on!

What Is Geocaching?

Geocaching is a global treasure hunt.  Participants use GPS enabled devices to locate specific coordinates where they can search for a hidden cache.  The caches are small to large containers that will have a log to sign and often fun little items to trade.  These caches can be in a parking lot, a nature center, just off a trail or on a small island that can only be reached by boat.  Geocaching has so many different levels of difficulty and terrain.

 

What do You Need to Start Geocaching?

What is Geocaching

 

Good Shoes

Start by going to Geocaching.com where you can sign up for a free account.  There is also a Geocaching 101 section that helps explain the game.  I also recommend getting the app.  You can use app to find a cache, mark it as found and leave notes.  The site and app are both very user friendly.

Next, find caches near you and head out on the hunt.  We were surprised to find that we had a few within walking distance of our house. After just one evening of geocaching, we were hooked.  It is kind of like being in a secret club and only the members know where the caches are.  I like driving by spots knowing there is a cache there.

Some walking trails and biking trails have several geocaches along the way.  I always check the recent logs on caches before I go.  If it looks like it has not been found or is really hard I may skip it.  Always remember that kids have a different way of looking at the world.  Sometimes I over think the hiding places or clues and my son will find it quickly.

geocaching 101

Why We Love Geocaching

The number one reason is that we can go geocaching as a family.

It gets us outside and seeing parts of our state that we have never seen before.

The excitement of the find is addictive.

My son gets to trade fun small items, like toy dinosaurs, compasses and rubber chickens. I recommend going to party store and picking up some small items to trade.  This is really fun for the kids.

When we go on vacation it is fun to find a cache or 2 while exploring new places and we get to see spots that are away from the typical tourist attractions.

geocaching swagCheck out these other Geocaching posts.

Geocaching

and

GPS

 What is your favorite outdoor family activity?

5 reasons to have stylish baby wipes on hand #HuggiesMomStyle

Just because I don’t have a baby in diapers anymore doesn’t mean I don’t still have a use for stylish baby wipes.  We still use wipes frequently, and I don’t see us stopping anytime soon.  I’ve been toting around Huggies Clutch ‘n’ Clean wipes lately-the wipes arent a new thing, but the cute and fun clutches are so much more fun than “regular” travel packs or a few wipes tossed in sandwich bag for just-in-case! Fun designs, bright colors ,and an easy to refill clutch make for a great little on the go must-have for me! This post is brought to you by our friends at Huggies.  Opinions are my own.

 stylish-baby-wipes

1. On the go messes

Being on the go doesn’t always mean having a place to clean up.  Sticky messes even having hand sanitizer with you isn’t what you  need.  Sticky hands don’t improve with sanitizer.  … having wipes on hand makes quick work of hands, faces, etc.  Being able to do a quick wipedown of the tray on a plane, table at a playground….having those wipes on hand really make things easier.

2. Freshening up

When I’m traveling (especially on a plane!) I always feel like I have “airplane” hair and face.  I don’t know what it is, but the second I land I want to clean my face and wash my hair.  Given that I’m usually on the go and don’t have time to do a big freshen up in the bathroom when I travel, having a few baby wipes can at least give me a few seconds to freshen up my face, neck, arms.

Summer is the time I use baby wipes most for me- between more outdoor activities and simply needing to freshen up from heat and humidity… I love having wipes on hand to just do a quick cool down and freshen up. Quick and easy.

Plus, in a pinch? Baby wipes make a great makeup remover!

We’ve used the wipes to get the kids a bit more presentable when they are going from, say, a baseball game to a sibling’s dance recital. Quick and easy…

3. Travel “Pitstops”

If you’ve traveled any distance with a kid, you’ve probably heard the “I have to go to the bathroom” line at a completely inopportune time.  Perhaps you are in traffic, or on a stretch of highway with no exits coming soon.  Perhaps, like me, you still keep the on-the-go potty in the van just in case and like to keep wipes on hand because, well, once you go, you have to cleanse yourself and it’s nice to use a wipe that’s wet and not just dry tissue.

4. Letting kids help clean

My kids have all helped to clean the house since they were very young.  We’ve always tried to find ways to let the kids help- baby wipes have always been a great option.  We have felt a lot more comfortable letting little ones help with baby wipes than other wipes that may contain harsh chemicals, especially when kids might still put things into their mouths.

The Huggies Designer Tubs come in prints, patterns and colors that are meant to match our homes- while characters are fun and engaging for kids, we don’t all want to have our entire house screaming “WE HAVE SMALL CHILDREN” all day long!  The gorgeous Designer Tubs allow me to keep them out and about so the kids can wipe down their new kid table and shelves for their books and toys quickly and easily.  The thinking for me is, maybe if they SEE cleaning tools, they might use them without prompting?!

5. Spill and stain removal

Is there anyone out there who spills something on their clothes at an opportune time?? For me, I’m forever spilling something or realizing I spilled earlier and have a stain at very inconvenient moments.  Baby wipes are great for getting a lot of stains and spills off of clothes, and the wet spots they create dry rather quickly.  Maybe it’s just me who’s clumsy- but I’ve used baby wipes for years and years for on the go spot removal!

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What do YOU use baby wipes for? 

 

On the go first aid

On the go first aid is not always something we stop to consider. Honestly, if it wasn’t for my husband being safety man, I’d probably not be prepared often on the go.  He’s always been insistent that each of our vehicles have a well-stocked first aid kit. Which we do.  But I usually leave it in the van, and don’t carry it with me.  Some men carry protection in their wallets.  My husband carries bandaids (totally serious, and always at least 2…. which I found out when I cut my finger on my own jeans in a store a few months ago… he whipped out a bandage!!)  Mr. Martin totally needs a Safety Man shirt.  He’d rock that. Also a cape.  Made from bandages.

All of those scrapes and cuts from summer fun don’t have to have to be a nightmare to contend with. At least not anymore. Having a first aid kit nearby can help immensely, and it doesn’t have to be a big kit.  A few basics are all you need!

What to include in an on the go first aid kit

on-the-go-first-aid-kit-essentials

Bandages (I recommend a box with multiple sizes)

Ace bandage (or similar- can be used to support a twisted ankle or knee, or tied as a turnicot)

Puracyn OTC Wound & Skin Care  

Puracyn OTC Wound & Skin Care is a unique, patented solution of electrochemically treated saline for cleaning and healing wounds, including cuts, abrasions, irritations and lacerations.  The solution mimics compounds naturally produced by the body, making it an ideal aid in wound cleaning and healing.

Doctor-tested Puracyn® OTC Wound & Skin Care is non-irritating, non-toxic and non-sensitizing as well as safe, effective and easy to apply in first aid situations. It does not contain antibiotics, steroids or alcohol and no prescription is required.

Benzocaine (or similar) in case of sting or bite

I’d love to suggest coins to call for help from a payphone but I’m not sure where many payphones are located anymore! 

on the go first aid kit

On the go first aid kits don’t need to be a full first aid kit. The above items will all fit into even a sandwich sized reusable container and won’t take up a ton of room in your day pack, diaper bag, etc.  It will allow you to treat minor cuts, scrapes and wounds on the spot when you are on the go, so that all of those fabulous fun memories you are making with your loved ones aren’t interrupted or put on hold to go back home or to the car for some first aid.

firstdayatbeach

My kids haven’t spent much time at the beach.  We just haven’t been often- pools, lakes, yes.  Ocean? Not so much.  On Mother’s Day, we took our first family of 5 trip to the beach! It was tons of fun, no injuries, and we’re all anxious to visit again when it’s warm enough to swim!

 

Puracyn-knee-scrape

Puracyn-wound-care

You can see the drops of Puracyn on his leg- we left them there so you can see that the solution itself is clear. We used the Puracyn to clean the wound for a few days- someone won’t keep bandages on and continues to fall and scrape the knee over and over again…

 

Check out the HUGE and fabulous giveaway Puracyn has going on over at their Facebook page-you’ll have a chance at winning a $400 summer themed prize package for fun at the beach, on a camping trip, at a backyard BBQ and more! Enter from 6/21 to 7/24/14 (18 and older)

 

This is a product-provided, sponsored conversation that contains affiliate links. I received one 4 oz. spray bottle of Puracyn® OTC Wound & Skin Care and a branded first aid kit. All opinions, text and experiences are my own.

This is a product-provided, sponsored conversation that contains affiliate links. I received one 4 oz. spray bottle of Puracyn® OTC Wound & Skin Care and a branded first aid kit. All opinions, text and experiences are my own.

5 Reasons to Choose a Video Baby Monitor #VTechSafeandSound

Every parent has wished for eyes in the back of their head, usually on a daily (or hourly basis).  We’ve all often wished we could be in two places at once as well.  A Video Baby Monitor can help you out on both of those wishes!  Life is busy, and we need to stop, look, and listen to our children so we don’t miss out on the simple moments too.  Thanks to V-Tech for sponsoring this Video Baby Monitor post- and for making video monitors so parents don’t miss a moment!

 5 reasons to choose a video baby monitor

5 reasons to choose video baby monitor

1. The advantage to a video monitor over an audio only one is that you can tell the noise coming from your child’s room is just run of the mill shenanigans or if someone is about to hurt themselves.  We have two toddlers in one room (about a year apart) – one is in a crib, the other in a toddler bed so this is very useful.  Often one of them is asleep (or nearly) while the other is still playing.  Being able to watch them without opening the door and waking the other is very useful.

vtech monitor baby
2. One of the features that sets the V-Tech apart is the remote temperature sensor, which allows you to know the temperature in the room the camera unit is in, again, without opening a door to check.  In our house, the boys room gets a lot hotter in the winter and cooler in the summer with the door shut, so this feature lets us keep them comfortable without disturbing them.
vtech monitor display
The two way radio feature is also very nice, allowing us to talk to the boys (or each other) without yelling across the house, disturbing anyone else.  You do have to be careful with this though, the first few times we used it to talk to the boys, it startled them a bit.
One parent unit can monitor up to four camera units, so you don’t have to keep track of extra hardware to watch kids in different rooms.  They also have fairly good range, so that you can even go out into the yard with one child while the others are sleeping.
Speaking of sleeping, the cameras also work in the dark so they could be used for other things as well, such as having one by the front door to see who is there, giving you a bit of extra security.  Imagine how handy this might be when the kiddos become teens? 

The V-Tech Safe & Sound VM333 Video Baby Monitor units themselves are compact and solidly built, with a white and silver color scheme that will blend in with nearly any room décor.  The camera has a wide pan range of 270 degrees and tilts 124 degrees, allowing you to either watch your child move around as they play, or as in our case, watching two kids in the same room.  The camera also has a 2x zoom for more detail if you need it. The parent unit has a rechargeable battery so it can be on the move with you, while the child units need to be plugged in.

vtech monitor on shelf

The video image is clear and high quality at 25 frames per second, so even beyond watching a sleeping baby, you can catch the little moments you might miss while they play in a different room.  There are three viewing modes, you can either fix on one camera, view up to 4 cameras on a split screen at the same time, or use the patrol mode which switches between cameras every 7 seconds.

You can find more information about the V-Tech Video Baby Monitor by visiting V-Tech’s website or Facebook page.

 

Have you used a video baby monitor? When would you use one?

10 Easy Weeknight Meals

Sometimes it’s easy for the day to race by, whether it’s because you’ve had a hectic day at the office, the kid’s busy schedules or you’re just taking time for yourself. Dinners aren’t always planned and at the end of the day, it can be hard to gain motivation to cook at all, let alone a big extravagant dinner. Eating out is always an option, but it’s costly and usually not very healthy.

Don’t worry though, because there are other options! This list is composed of some super easy weeknight dinners that you can throw together in minutes, and be eating in less than an hour! Check them out and give them a go. There’s even a frozen pizza that requires no effort, which is absolutely amazing after a long day when you just want some food in your stomach without putting in the work.

10 Easy Weeknight Meals

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1.  Ristorante Frozen Pizza

pizza-vegetale-ristorante

We love our pizza around here.  Even if the kids aren’t up for some more gourmet toppings, we are… and Ristorante is our go-to brand for frozen pizza because of the delectable toppings and quality ingredients they use.  Lucky for us, all three of our kids have a pretty good palate and have loved each of the Ristorante varieties we’ve had for dinner.  Paired with a nice salad, this is one of the fastest dinners that everyone in the house can enjoy!

To see if Ristorante pizzas are available near you, check out the Store Locator. Don’t see Ristorante in your supermarket? You can put in a request with the store manager!

2. 15 Minute White Chicken Chili

15-minute-white-chicken-chili

White chicken chili is my personal favorite kind of chili. I love beans so I’m always happy to enjoy a bowl of chili, but chicken is my favorite meat and I’m always up for a change of pace from the “norm” of our menu items.

3. Gluten Free Crab Cakes

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With so many folks living a gluten free lifestyle, we’re making our own effort to build up a repertoire of gluten free menu options so that we can be sure to please any of our guests.  My husband LOVES to go crabbing and often has  bits of crab leftover after he enjoys his meal. One of his favorite things I make are the crab cakes using the leftover crab meat. Spoiled? Maybe. But this one’s easy to change up to make it gluten free and we’ll be trying this recipe very soon.  Quick and easy, just how we like our dinners!

4. Spinach Artichoke Spaghetti Squash

Spinach-Artichoke-Spaghetti-Squash-recipe-Taste-and-Tell-1

This recipe’s in honor of my friend Ally.  She’s the first who introduced me to the goodness of spinach and artichoke together, and now I’ve found a quick and easy meal idea combining those two ingredients.  Ally, you’re welcome, love!

5. Chicken Spaghetti Casserole

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You can totally speed this up using all leftovers.  I do my best to cook once and eat twice whenever possible, so when we cook chicken? I make extra.  When I make pasta? I cook extra.  Makes other meals even easier!

6. Ham and Cheese Quesadillas

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Quesadillas are great because they can so easily be transported for a picnic or meal on the go. I’ve lost count of how many nights we have had dinner on a ballfield in the past few months and I’m always on the lookout for new ideas that we can bring with us!

7. Sloppy Joes

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Sloppy Joes are one of my all time favorite comfort foods. I wish my husband liked them more, but the kids and I all love them so he (sad for him) gets outvoted and they end up in the menu rotation!

8. Throw Together Black Bean Burgers

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This black bean burger recipe is one I’ve been anxious to try. My oldest stopped eating meat several months ago and seems to think she can live on boxed meat-replacment products. Not the healthiest option for sure, and not one I want her to continue doing.  Black beans are SO good for you, and since we all like them, why not make our own burgers?

9. Quick and Easy Pesto Quinoa

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A recipe to use the basil from the garden?  Yes, please!!  This would be great on its own but would also pair nicely with the Pizza Quattro Formaggi or Pizza Funghi.

10. Green Chile Stuffed Burgers

green-chile-burgers-1-800We love burgers, but really, I’m getting tired of plain old burgers.  My goal is trying a new kind of burger at least 5 times this summer.

savor-your-summer

Once your easy week night meals are cleaned up, use some of that time you saved and check out the Savor Your Summer for a chance to win 1 of 5 grand prize packages! http://bit.ly/1iVUjMl

What are your easy week night meal ideas?

 

Buy Thomas & Friends to Earn Big Rewards!

There are few certainties in life, but one thing you can count on is if you have a little boy, he will reach a point in his life where he loves trains.  Our 2 ½ year old has just entered that point.  It started with him watching everything Thomas & Friends  related on Netflix a month or so ago and we realized it was bad when a couple of days ago he was pushing his little brother (just over 15 months old) around in a box yelling “ALL ABOARD TRAIN!”.

Disclaimer: Post is sponsored by Lunchbox. Opinions are my own.

Thomas & Friends at Walmart

We decided to surprise him with something a little more cooperative and easy to use than a little brother in a box, so we headed off to Wal-Mart to find some fun toys.  I’ve only paid passing attention to the show as he watches it so I was surprised by how many different trains and sets there were.  Judging by all the spots with out of stock toys, I’m guessing our little guy isn’t the only one who’s crazy about Thomas.  We picked up the Sodor Lumber Take-n-Play set (which included Thomas), along with a Gordon to add to it.

Thomas post 5

 

Thomas & Friends at Walmart

After spending a few minutes thinking about his good fortune, he had to sidetrack little brother with the box the toys came in (maybe we will get off easy with the little brother and just keep a steady supply of boxes on hand for him) while he happily played with his new toys.

Thomas post 2

Judging from the look on his face when he saw what we had for him, we decided that it would be worthwhile to sign up for the Journey to Rewards program – a quick way to earn rewards back on the Thomas products we are going to be buying anyway.  Signing up for the program is quick and easy and for being such an awesome #ThomasMom!, start off with 700 bonus points just for signing up using the promo code ThisMamaLoves.   That puts you halfway to the first reward available to redeem! 

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Once that was done we took a picture of the receipt with our smart phone and submitted it through the mobile site (using the “snap+” tab) and within a few minutes we had already earned enough points to cash in for our first reward!  Fun stuff for him and free stuff for me is a winning combination.

You can earn rewards on all Thomas & Friends™ toys, tracks, clothing, DVDs, and more at Walmart!

Are you ready to be an awesome #ThomasMom!?

 

 

How to combat summer learning loss #zoobeanexpert

Have you ever taken a vacation from work or a hobby, and then you came back and your brain drew a blank at the most simplest of tasks? It’s normal for our minds to need to adjust, and get back in the swing of things. Children go through this exact same experience during the summer months. It’s called summer slide, summer learning loss….there’s a few different names for it.

WAYS-TO-PREVENT-SUMMER-SLIDE

The difference?

Usually as an adult vacations are shorter, and our tasks have already been pretty well engrained in us beforehand. Children, however, are constantly learning new things at a very quick rate, and sometimes aren’t afforded the time they need to catch back up. Academically, this is known as summer learning loss, and it could cause them to follow behind in classes, and makes it necessary to repeat in more detail lessons that were already previously learned.

Don’t worry, there’s a solution!

Zoobean provides a service called Zoobean Expert that works hard to combat summer learning loss. The key to preventing summer learning loss is to keep your child’s mind engaged in educational activites. Zoobean helps you to do just that by providing you, the parent, the tools that you need to monitor, track, and implement these activities.

How Zoobean Expert works:

Sign up, build a child’s profile.

Get your dashboard, aka SmartList, where recommendations and reading guides will be added

Connect with your personal expert to refine your child’s interests and reading level or to just ask questions related to building your child’s literacy

Use Kits for deep dives into topics like “Exploring Rainbows” or “Loving Yourself.” Search books and apps in a library of selections curated by experts and cataloged using over 1,400 tags

zoobean-smartkit-gardening
For only $25 a year – less than a latte each month, you can give your child a head start for the new year! Once your personal expert gets in touch with you to gather info about your child’s interests and reading level, they’ll begin offering recommendations to your child’s “smartlist”. There are unlimited kits created by Zoobean experts (who are also educators and librarians), and constructed specifically to help your child learn and grow. The topics range from traditional learning subjects, to life subjects like “Dealing with Divorce”.

zoobean-gardening-book-ideas

Kits have different sections that introduce the curator of the kit, description of the topic/theme of the kit, book resources, app and tech resources, as well as other resources and recommendations (like learning activities, for example). The Gardening Kit has a video included about planting seeds.

zoobean-planting-seeds-video

After you’ve added some Kits to “My SmartList,” Zoobean curators will make a recommendation for a book and app to go along with the kit. Easy, and helpful. Now we will have some great ideas for library and book store visits…or birthday gifts for our little nature lover!

zoobean-curating-book-app-ideas

I tried to search for a Kit about Birds because my littlest one loves birds but there isn’t one (yet)- and I did notice a $10 fee to request a custom kit (although when you do this, they give you 50% off an order of the kit, which would be a great birthday surprise for her birthday in August).

zoobean-coupon-redeem

Give your child the gift of reading today! Use EXPERTMAMALOVE for $10 off an Expert membership and HOMEMAMALOVE for 20% off the home delivery service.

 

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of ZooBean. The opinions and text are all mine.

Healthy on the go snack idea #RealTastesGood

I want my kids to be healthy, productive, and successful. I’m fairly certain every decent mother wants the same. I find, however, that the “healthy” part is much easier said than done. The day and age that we live in is all about go, go, go, and my family is no different. Always on the rush from one practice to another with school work and regular household duties fitted snugly in between. Finding healthy on the go snack ideas can often be tricky. They take great pre-planning, in order for everything to run smoothly. According to a study conducted by Taste of Nature, I am not alone. The study shows that Americans in general struggle to snack nutritiously, opting for taste over nutrition 73% of the time.

healthy-snack-options-on-the-go

While I like to eat healthy when snacking, convincing the kids to do the same is another matter entirely. They’ve somehow developed the mindset that if something is GOOD for you, it can’t TASTE good as well. Luckily for me, Taste of Nature was on my side. Taste of Nature creates delicious, certified organic, gluten-free certified, non-gmo project verified snack bars with real nuts, fruits and grains that you can see (did I mention they’re also only 200 calories?).

Taste of Nature asked me to host a little party to share their snack bars with some friends.  What I decided to do was have a few of my mom friends over, share the bars with them, get a little girl time in, and then send them all home with some of the bars and a goodie bag.

healthy-snack-option-taste-of-nature-bars

I cut one of each bar up for each mom to try while she was here. I also set out some cheese, strawberries and grapes to make a more rounded snack for everyone. I thought that if the moms were familiar with the bars, their flavors and ingredients, and could bring some samples home to try, it might help the kids be more willing to try something new. :)

healthy-snack-bars-taste-of-nature

The verdict? Moms loved these healthy snack bars.  Everyone agreed they think their kids will like at least 2 of the varieties if not more.

They were really excited to get a goodie bag to bring home full of some fun stuff to encourage their kids to get outside and enjoy nature, plus some of the bar flavors to share with their families!

taste-of-nature-tasting-party
Taste of Nature
believes Real Tastes Good. They actually carry 6 great flavors in the U.S.: Brazilian Nut Festival, California Almond Valley, Quebec Cranberry Carnival, Canadian Maple Forest, Himalayan Goji Summit, and Persian Pomegranate Garden.  None of these flavors contain anything artificial; no fillers, no chemicals and most importantly… no complaints from my friends, their kids or my own kiddos! In fact, the kids still have no idea exactly how healthy Taste of Nature bars are! (Shhhh)

 

 

So all of this goodness must come at a high price, right? Wrong! Taste of Nature bars run around $1.99. I grab my mine at “Garden of Light’ or “The Living Earth” usually, but you can find them at all fine natural products stores as well as select retailers. Head on over to http://www.tasteofnature.ca/where-to-buy/ and find a Taste of Nature retailer near you!

What are your favorite healthy on the go snack ideas?

 

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.