Woolzies Dryer Balls Review!

Today I have a super cool product to tell you about.  Not only is this product eco friendly and 100% natural, but it will save you time and money and it actually works!  Are you intrigued?  Then let me introduce you to Woolzies Dryer Balls!

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Woolzies Dryer Balls are made out of 100% pure New Zealand wool.  Each ball is individually handmade and works very effectively to soften your laundry without any nasty chemicals at all whatsoever!  An added bonus to using Woolzies Dryer Balls, is that they can actually shorten your drying time by an average of 25% per load!  That is less time the dryer is on, sucking up electricity, heating up your home, and cooking your clothes!  The balls also work naturally to reduce static and wrinkles.

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Each set of Woolzies Dryer Balls is guaranteed to last for 1,000 loads of laundry!  That’s a lot of laundry!  Using them is simple, just remove the balls from the package and throw them in your dryer.  No need for fabric softeners of any kind because remember, the Woolzies Dryer Balls will naturally soften your clothes.  Did you know that traditional fabric softeners are made from lard?  That’s why your washing machine gunks up and gets that funky, rancid smell every so often.  Not to mention all the added, nasty, unnecessary chemicals that you are coating your clothes with.  Having children with sensitive skin, I can certainly appreciate cutting more chemicals out of their daily life.

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As a side note, my three year old and one year old thinks it is completely hilarious when the balls fall out of the dryer while emptying the clothes.  It then becomes a fun race to see if they can retrieve them for me before the dog does.  🙂

But what if you are allergic to wool?

Woolzies are hypoallergenic and completely safe for people with wool sensitivities!  The wool balls will not shed on your laundry.

After several loads of laundry, a common theme in this large family, I can tell you that Woolzies are completely awesome.  I absolutely notice that my clothes are much softer when using the dryer balls.  A lot softer.  And the clothes absolutely get dry much faster, meaning laundry day turns into laundry morning instead of an all day event.  Yay!

Woolzies Dryer Balls are a huge money saver, when you factor in how much money you normally spend on regular fabric softener, not to mention the electricity money saved.  And they are completely eco friendly, so you can genuinely feel good about using this product.

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Not only will Woolzies save you money and reduce the chemicals in your life, but they are handmade in the democratic republic of Nepal, providing a steady source of income to the desperately needy women of that country.  Win/win.

Get your very own Woolzies Dryer Balls by clicking HERE and visiting their website.

“Like” Woolzies on Facebook by clicking HERE.

Follow Woolzies on Twitter by clicking HERE.

The awesome folks at Woolzies provided me with a sample for review purposes and to share their awesome product with my readers.  I was not compensated in any other way, and I really do think their product is amazing!

Baby Spa

 

After a hot, dry summer, it is suddenly fall and fast approaching winter!  All the crazy weather and now the dry heat can really wreak havoc on our skin, especially on delicate baby skin.  If you aren’t already experiencing dry, irritated skin, then it’s time to be proactive and prevent it from happening all together!

I was recently introduced to the Baby Spa line of products, a brand that is 98-100% natural and absolutely 100% free of parabens, pthalates, SLS, PEGS and mineral oil.  Basically, none of the yucky stuff that could further irritate baby’s skin.

A unique feature of Baby Spa, is that they cater specifically to your baby’s stage, be it a newborn baby or crawler, to a walking baby, and preschool ages and beyond.

They also use something called ethnobotanicals, which are indigenous plants that have been traditionally used for medicinal and other beneficial reasons.

Baby Spa has a wide range of products, from shampoos and baby washes to diaper creams and even massage oils.  The lotions are creamy, not greasy at all, and have a very faint, pleasant scent.

Now is the time to stock up!  Prevent those precious baby cheeks from the dry winter months ahead!

 

Check out Baby Spa products on their website by clicking HERE.

“Like” Baby Spa on Facebook by clicking HERE.

Follow Baby Spa on Twitter by clicking HERE.

 

I received the samples pictured for review purposes, but was not compensated in any other way.

Black Friday!!!

Gift Wrapped – 20 Songs That Keep on Giving!

I won’t lie.  I love to shop.  Retail therapy is a real thing for me, and finding an awesome bargain?  Well, that is icing on the cake.  This time of year, the stores are gearing up for some of the craziest sales of the season, and I just love it!

I follow a website that leaks the ads early, that’s how obsessed I am.  This year, we have a pricey 3DS XL on Santa’s list, so I am really hoping that someone will have a nice bundle on sale.

I’m also trying to dial back a little on the gift giving this year because I tend to get a little out of control.  I made a list and am trying very hard to stick with it.  That’s easier said than done, especially with all the leaked sales coming out!  The problem is, Christmas morning is so full of gift opening, that lots of gifts get thrown aside to open new ones.  The kids get so many toys, they don’t know what to play with first.  The littles especially, even get tired of opening gifts!  Hello!  Time for a wake up call, mama!

I heard of this awesome old Victorian tradition of gift giving which basically consists of four gifts.  Something you want, something you need, something to wear and something to read.  How smart is that?  A little bit of everything, and with less gifts, it’s so much easier to appreciate what is actually received.

Well, I already went over that four gift limit.  Not as badly as before, so I get points for that, right?  And I am sticking to the general rule of the four categories.  What really complicates things is when the kids get older and the items they ask for get so much more expensive.  The 3DS XL?  Yeah, without any games, it runs $200.  A game will be at least another $30.  That’s for one kid.  We have four.

Now, the other kids lists, well, they are all significantly less expensive.  They could get way more gifts for not even close to the cost of the 3DS XL.  But then, one kid is opening only a couple gifts and the others have a whole bunch?  That’s not fair.  Is it?

I don’t know.  I think I over think it all.

That is so unlike me.

Stop laughing.  Seriously.

Happy Halloween!

 

Technically, only Matthew has his “official” Halloween costume on in this picture, but you get the idea.  🙂

So after a month filled with planning, parties and fun, autumnal activities, the big day is finally upon us!  We absolutely adore Halloween in our home, everything from the decorations and spooky tales to the fancy costumes and makeup.  This year we have pirates, arrr!, and a princess and even a wee little fairy.  (Again, not in the photo above, but I’ll share their “official” costumes with you all manana, I promise.)

We like themes in our house.  I’m sure it has nothing at all to do with mama’s OCD tendencies.  Yeah…..

Anyway, I hope you all have a safe and Happy Halloween!  Try and stay warm, and don’t forget the parent tax on the kiddos Halloween booty!  This year’s tax rate went up again, can you believe it?  It is especially high on anything chocolate…..

Be safe, friends!

Potty Tots Giveaway Winner!

No, I didn’t forget about my winner!  We had a computer meltdown over the weekend.  Literally.  We woke up to the smell of burning plastic.  When we got up to investigate, it turns out the fan on the graphics card had stopped working, and thusly started to melt.  Not the best thing to wake up to, but, ya know.

Anywho.

My Potty Tots winner is……………….

 

Ashley K.!!!  Yay!!!

 

A great big congratulations to her, she will be getting her Potty Tots potty training kit in the mail very soon!

Didn’t win this time?  No worries!  You can still get your very own Potty Tots Potty training kit through the Potty Tots website!  Have your little one with you when you explore the site, there is a lot of fun, interactive stuff to do!

 

I hope everyone had an awesome weekend!  Can you believe it’s October already?!  My goodness, how time flies!

Potty Tots Review & Giveaway!

I will be completely honest with you all and just say that I hate potty training.  I dread it.  The Pull Ups Potty Dance?  Ridiculous.  We have books and DVDs and I even sat through Dr Phil’s Potty training in one day deal.  You know what all of these things are lacking?  Focus on the child!  This is where Potty Tots is completely different.  Everything is all about full immersion of the child into the realm of using the potty.  There are adorable characters, cute songs, fun games, even an interactive website all designed to help get your child excited to use the potty.  Brillante!

Potty Tots was invented by a mom, Jill Leech.  I love that.  Who better to know what’s best for our children?  She saw a need for this in the market and so she made it happen!  Her philosophy is to make learning fun, and she did exactly that with Potty Tots!  The characters are multi-ethnic, easy to relate to, and honestly, they really are adorable.

Through the Potty Tots website, once you go through all the amazing information and fun activities, you can order a Potty Tots kit for a boy or a girl.  Each kit is specifically geared towards your child, getting them excited to start potty training.

The kits include a potty training guide book, an illustrated potty chart, a progress chart with clings, and an animated DVD with bonus music videos!

The kit is literally jam packed with all kinds of goodies that are perfect for helping you and your little one gear up for potty training with as little stress as possible.

Something super cool and unique with this system, is the progress chart that is included.  There is a large sheet with tons of adorable vinyl cling Potty Tots that are used to show your child’s progress.  Ideally, this would be hung in the bathroom, but we use ours on the refrigerator, where everyone can see Noah’s progress and cheer him on.  The more cheering and excitement there is, the more interest and success there is, trust and believe!

Noah would literally run down the hallway to move his little Potty Tot down the field, it was cause for celebration!

And of course, he also loved the book, which not only stars the Potty Tots, but they use the very same system in the book, showing the chart in use and everything, which is even more exciting for the child because they get to do exactly the same things as their favorite characters in the book.  Kids like to imitate, the awesomeness here is just, well, awesome.  This system has worked wonders with Noah’s potty training.  We have tried several different methods, taken several breaks, even assumed the kid would wear diapers into his teens.  Well, maybe not that bad, but potty training can be a stressful time.  Anything that helps encourage your child, and you for that matter, is worth it’s weight in gold.  Potty Tots is most definitely worth it’s weight in gold!

This is a system that you will use now and then pass down to the next child or share with your friends and family.  No silly gimmicks, no complicated maneuvers, just plain, simple, tried and true methods that make potty training something that does not need to be dreaded.

Check out Potty Tots for yourself at there website by clicking HERE.  They even have diplomas that you can print out for your little one!

“Like” Potty Tots on Facebook by clicking HERE.

Follow Potty Tots on Twitter by clicking HERE.

Did you check out their website and “Like” their Facebook page?  Once you do both, leave me a comment or send me an email to let me know and you are entered to win a Potty Tots training kit of your very own!  Share this review with your friends on Twitter and Facebook, and I’ll let you have an extra entry.  Hey, I’m cool like that.

I’m telling you, this system is effective!  I really wish I had had it for my oldest two, but now I know where to go when Sara is potty training next year.  Now go enter and good luck!  Winner wlil be announced Saturday, September 29, 2012.

The awesome folks at Potty Tots provided my with a Potty Tots kit free of charge for review purposes.  I was not compensated in any other way, and Potty Tots really did make potty training fun in our house!  They are awesome!

September Citrus Lane Box!

It’s mid September, and that means it’s time for our monthly Citrus Lane box!  For those who don’t yet know the awesomeness of Citrus Lane, basically it is a monthly subscription service, curated to your little one(s) from newborn to age 3.  Each month is centered on a theme, and the boxes are filled with fun, age appropriate goodies from brands that you may not have known about before.

This month’s theme is “Animal Parade”.

 

Sara was eager, as always, to dig right in!

 

Included in every box is an insert that tells you more about each of the items and often includes Citrus Lane exclusive coupon codes and offers from the featured companies.

 

It also includes the websites to the brands, so you can look up even more cool products that they may have to offer.

 

Green Sprouts Long Sleeve Bib $20.00

Have you ever dreaded meal time because of the inevitable mess that would explode as your toddler fed him or herself?  Yeah, me too.  Heck, half the time, we strip them down to the diapers, knowing that they will end up wearing most of their dinner.  This bib is waterproof, has a velcro closure to stay in place and it even has a flip pocket to catch anything that would otherwise slide down into baby’s lap.  Oh yes, this ranks high on the awesome meter!

 

HappyBaby Happy Tot Pouch $1.75

Bib firmly in place, now let’s eat!  HappyBaby makes yummy organic food pouches that are easy to store, easy to carry and easy for little ones to feed themselves with.  The pouch is BPA free and has a resealable top for preserving any leftovers.  This pouch is long gone, Sara loved it.

 

It’s like she’s anticipating the mess she is going to make with that fruit pouch.  What a thoughtful girl!

 

BabyGanics Toy & Table Cleaner $3.99

This item was in another box a month or two ago, but let me tell you, it is great to have several!  I like to keep one in the diaper bag, and now I have one next to the high chair.  This cleaner is paraben, sulfates and pthalates free, a perfect way to clean baby’s highchair tray at home or on the go.  It is also handy for wiping down restaurant tables, or anything that you want to make sure is nice and clean before your baby decides to gnaw on it.

 

I think Sara approves of her cute little puppy bath sponge!

 

Rich Frog Tub Sponge $5.95

Bathtime will be even more fun with this adorable little puppy dog sponge!  It has a very soft terry cloth covering that is soft on baby’s skin, a handy dandy loop to hang it to dry, and it stays afloat in the tub, so it is always easy to find and play with!

 

The cuteness of this book is almost too much!

 

InnovativeKids Faces Book $6.99

This book, as you saw, opens up to several, adorable and fun masks!  Talk about making reading fun!  This book was hugely giggle inducing for the whole family.  What a fun idea, we love it!

Try out your very own subscription to Citrus Lane by clicking HERE.  Once you follow that link, enter coupon code 10TODAY to save 10%.    When you subscribe for a full year, they also give you two months free.  Who doesn’t love free?!

We love Citrus Lane in our home.  As I have said before, the value of the products each month for the small price paid is just fabulous.  And much cheaper than a “quick” trip to Target for me.  I love being introduced to new brands and companies, and we have loved everything we have gotten so far.

Discovering Things

This past weekend brought us gorgeous, cool,  fall like weather.  I very happily opened up the windows to let the fresh,  crisp air in, and just as happily kicked the kids outside before they had a chance to fight about anything.

The nasty hot summer had them stuck inside far more than they are used to, so I was determined for them to soak in as much outside time as possible.  With the windows open, we could hear them excitedly talking as they followed the trails of butterflies or hopped around after a large grasshopper.

Bubbles were blown, drawing were made with chalk, they played on the swing set, they even made discoveries.

Abe and I were inside feeding the two little ones, when we hear Matt and Bella very excitedly talking about their great “discovery”.  They had been digging around and were talking about discovering fossils, so I assumed they found a rock that they decided to pretend was some sort of dinosaur bone, or whatever.

They started talking louder, getting more excited as they tried to decide what creature they found and what they should do with it.  When Bella suggested burying it, well, my brain started imagining what they possibly could have found.

When they declared that it had sharp claws, okay, game over.

Bella was coming up the front stairs when she opened the door to make her announcement.

“Mom, I have good news and some not so good news.  The good news is our dig was successful.  Too successful.  We found a dead creature with very long, sharp claws!”

Oh dear baby Jeebus.

“Did you touch it?!”  Ick factor to the max!  I sent Abe outside to see what they had found and sent them to scrubbing their hands clean from the dead “creature” cooties.

Abe said it was probably a mouse as he headed outside, to which they adamantly disagreed.

“No!  It can’t be a mouse, it has long sharp claws!”

Well, I don’t know what they thought they found, and I certainly don’t know what part of their brains were thinking it would be awesome to play with a dead anything.  But here it is, in all of its icky glory:

 

Doesn’t that look like an awesomely fun thing to play with?!  Blech.  And yes, it’s definitely a mouse, probably the remains of some stray cat’s snack.

They came inside and played video games after they used up all the soap washing their grody little hands.  They did make the day interesting, I’ll give them that.

Happy Birthday, Isabella!

My baby girl is seven years old today!  That is insanity.  I swear, it seems like only yesterday we were bringing her home from the hospital.  It’s cliche’ but true!

Isabella was the swaddle baby.  She refused to even entertain the thought of sleep without being tightly bound as a baby burrito.  Half the time, she would wake up unwrapped, as you see in the photo above.

Being my first baby girl, of course I took, and take, every chance I get to dress her up.  She was like a little doll, with those gorgeous baby blues and her pretty little outfits.

They grow up so fast!  On the eve of her third birthday, she left all of her binkies for the Binky Fairy.  I still have a ziplock bag full of her giant binky stash.  The fairy left her a new bracelet and a book, and she never looked back!  Well, that is until Noah was born and there were new pacifiers in the house.  I caught her sneaking them every once in a while.

Sweet as these curls are, they aren’t natural.  They came from sleeping in foam rollers overnight.  Aren’t they adorable?  I have naturally curly hair and had hoped she would get my curls.  Her hair could not be more straight.  That’s okay though, her hair is gorgeous and definitely fun to style and play with!

My Bella ballerina is going to be a star.  She has said that since she could talk, and she is most definitely already a star in her mama’s eyes.

Happy Birthday, sweet girl!  You are AWESOME!!

Episencial Giveaway Winner!

So many entries for this awesome gift basket from Episencial!  Thank you, thank you to everyone for entering!  We do have a winner…..drumroll please……

 

The Episencial gift basket goes to……..

 

Meredith T.!

 

Shoot me an email with your mailing info and I will get your basket out to you right away!

 

Isn’t winning fun?