Headchefs Review and Giveaway

There is nothing my kids enjoy more than cooking in the kitchen and inventing new recipes. I find that this is not only a great creative outlet for little minds, but is a fun activity for a lazy afternoon or rainy day. When we discovered the products by Headchefs, I just knew that my kids would be thrilled to try them out. Headchefs is a line of kitchen utensils designed with kids in mind. product line includes mixing bowls, whisks, spatulas, mixing spoons, etc… These functional tools have cute silicone bodies that kids just love! [click to continue…]

Kid Summer Fun: Keep the boredom at bay with FREE Summer Crafts for Kids!!

Click here to download your free Summer Crafts for Kids!!
Since I’m sticking with my little to no planned activities for the kiddos this summer, I’m looking to keep them happily occupied and not at one another’s throats all day, every day. We have swim lessons this week and next, and Busy B has Vacation Bible School, but left to their own devices I’m not sure what would happen. A mutiny perhaps. Having an arsenal of crafts, games and activities to keep the fighting at bay and the boredom naughties away is definitely the way to go. I’ll be sharing things we do that I think you all may like- feel free to share your ideas too!! [click to continue…]

The Hidden Connections Between Food and Childhood Ailments

WHAT’S EATING YOUR CHILD? The Hidden Connections Between Food and Childhood Ailments was just released on June 6th. Authored by Nutrition Detective Kelly Dorfman, MS, LND, this book is a wealth of resources for those parents who are interested in looking at different ways things your child ingests can be affecting their body and their health.

I know for me personally, there are things that I wasn’t aware of at all before reading this book- some that I was.  I’m always trying to look for ways to keep my kids healthy and ward of illness without the use of pharmaceuticals.  I do try to avoid high fructose corn syrup when I am able to because I can tell by the kids’ behavior within 5 minutes of them eating it that they’ve had HCFS.  They get all kinds of hyper!!   My biggest reason for being interested in this book, aside from curiosity, is that all three of my children suffer from multiple rounds of ear infections every winter- frequently ones that don’t clear up without multiple rounds of antibiotics.  This makes me nuts and I’m actively trying to figure out a way to prevent them or a more natural way to help my kids get through them- I had ear infections the same way as a child and I’ve often wondered if there are things we can consume- or not consume- to help ward off infections in our ears.  [click to continue…]

“Helping Moms Manage Kids’ Allergies” #CleverAllergyfriendly

I wrote this post while participating in a blog tour conducted by Clever Girls Collective on behalf of Children’s Claritin®. I have been compensated for my time commitment to the program.

We’re only just breaking the surface of the world of seasonal allergies around here. My younger two children, currently 22 months and 3.5 years, are both having a horrible time with the pollen in the air here in Connecticut. There are days when I just look at them and feel so guilty!

One of my biggest allies in my fight with allergies is local honey. I’ve used it in spring for all of us for years- when the kids are little and under 18 months I make sure to dissolve the honey in boiling water to remove any chance of botulism, but I’ve read in so many places that using honey native to your geographic area is a great way to help combat allergies because it has the local pollen from the local bees. We like to buy local for many reasons, but we ONLY buy local honey for this reason. [click to continue…]

Yoga By the Dozen (Giveaway)

Yoga By the Dozen is a new favorite pasttime in my house.  Even Baby B loves it!!  I’m still amazed at how quickly my Busy girl picked up the names for the Yoga poses- ones that I still stumble over weeks later, she’s rolling them off her tongue like she’s known them her whole life. 

This DVD is great. Totally geared toward young kids, the repetition and simplicity is awesome- and the yoga is fun!  Definitely a DVD we’ve put into the player over and over again- and its hard to not say yes when they want to “watch” a DVD that ultimately gets them up and moving – habits I want to last a lifetime with my kids.   I’m so glad they all three of them love it- and twice when we’ve done it we’ve had other kids here who also jumped right in and got involved.  JoAnna and the kids on the DVD are very engaging and very fun to watch and imitate [click to continue…]

So we’re moving the kids’ bedrooms around ($50 Cymax Stores giveaway)

When Baby B was on the way, we weren’t sure what to do about our kids’ sleeping arrangements.  We have a three bedroom house and won’t be moving anytime soon- nor is an addition in the budget (ever?!) so one way or another, someone will be sharing a bedroom.  My kids, if you don’t know, are pretty close together in age- 25 months apart from Busy to Buddy and then 23 months later, Baby B came along.  What we decided when Baby B was born was to move the 2 older kids in together even though they are boy/girl and keep the baby in her own room.  It’s worked for 21 months but I think its time to change things up. 

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SmartLab Toys Snap Fashion Jewelry Studio (Giveaway & Discount)

Snap Fashion Jewelry Studio

DIY jewelry in a snap! Kids make interchangeable fabric-covered snaps that mix and match into a closet full of accessories: rings, bracelets, necklaces, belts, ponytail holder, headband, and more. Snap Fashion Jewelry Studio is packed with creatively crafted, fashion-forward ideas on all the ways you can marry up snaps with fabric for one-of-a-kind accessories. Other skills are learned too as the child embroiders a monogram or uses leaves and flowers to create printed fabric.

Snap Fashion Jewelry is available for $24.99 at www.smartlabtoys.com, Amazon.com and select retailers. Save 25% at smartlabtoys.com by entering BLOGBUZZ at checkout! (expires 6/30/11)

Busy’s thoughts:  My girl is a little younger than the age on the box but she had a BLAST with this.  She literally saw the box, opened it, and made snaps using every fabric sample that was included in it right away.  She was really proud of herself for being able to work the snap press, and figured it out with just a few reminders from me.  The little kids were napping and I was making dinner so she was in heaven sitting at the table making jewelry creations! 

She likes that you can make a necklace and rings, and a bracelet too.  Her favorite is the necklace.  She also likes the big sheet of paper (the decals) that you can make the snaps extra custom with!  Once I showed her that we can use ribbon we have at home to make even more bracelet straps, she was all excited planning a multitude of bracelets for all of her outfits. 

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Kids Relief All Natural Medicine

My littlest one is sick, again.  Or maybe, still.  Poor thing.  She’s had a really tough winter with stomach bugs and ear infections, plus scarlet fever.  Sometimes more than one of these illnesses at once.  That’s a lot for a 1 year old.  When she’s not feeling well, and really, when anyone in our family isn’t feeling great, I turn to natural and homeopathic remedies more and more first- like I did half an hour ago when I gave her some Kids Relief Pain & Fever and the Earache relief before her nap to keep her comfortable.  I’m fairly certain her ear infections from a few weeks ago have returned (or never went away) and she’s been very uncomfortable and crabby.  We can’t get in to the pediatrician until 4:45 this afternoon and she’s really overtired.

Why homeopathic first?  I try to avoid chemicals out of our home and our bodies when possible.  Obviously at times there’s a need for them, but if I can avoid them, I will.  Plus, there have been so many recalls on things in recent years that I would rather avoid medicines that have previously been recalled if able to.  Kids Reilef has a nice selection of products that provide relief for so many symptoms our kids can experience from 0-12!

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Non candy Easter Egg ideas

I’m not anti-candy. Not at all. (Hey, look at my physique, there’s clearly been candy in my life on many occasions!). That said, I don’t
want to just fill a bunch of eggs with candy and let the kids have at it. Sure, I do some candy treats, but we’re big into the hunting of the eggs in this family and I try to think “outside the box” for fillers. Since Easter’s just around the corner, I thought I’d share a few of my suggestions for non candy ideas for Easter Eggs!

non candy filler ideas for easter

Here are This Mama’s suggestions to put into Easter eggs:

For the Preschool Crowd:

1. Stickers
2. Tattoos
3. Bouncy Balls
4. Bandaids (what kid doesn’t love character bandaids?)
5. Mini Erasers
6. Matchbox Cars
7. Whistle
8. Tubs of chapstick/lip gloss
9. Coins
10. Puzzle pieces

The puzzle pieces might be my favorite…and you can do it a few ways. You can just tuck a piece or 2 of a puzzle in a bunch of eggs and finish the puzzle together as a family after the hunt, OR, you can get a puzzle per kid, and they have to find THEIR puzzle pieces. This can be a lot of fun and you can make it more and more challenging depending how old your kids are! The last way you could use puzzle pieces is to have a “larger” prize-type item and get a picture of it- cut that picture into puzzle pieces and tuck each piece into an egg to be hunted for. (You will likely have to color code the eggs or “label” them per kid with some of these ideas!)

School Age Kids:

1. Hair ties, hair clips

2. Tattoos

3. fun bandaids

4. chapstick or lip gloss

5. mini nail polish, matchbox cars

6. mini figures (Lego figures, miniature My Little Ponies, etc)

7. little keychains

8. puzzle pieces

9. clues on paper (When they follow the clues, they find a hidden surprise!)

10. coins

You can always buy different sized eggs, which would definitely allow for even more creativity in your hunts. Fruit snacks lend themselves nicely to being tucked into the medium sized eggs, as do pairs of kid socks, underwear and hair clips!

We love the egg hunt, we just have so much fun with it! Do you put things besides candy into your eggs? What kinds of things do you tuck into your eggs?