Thursday, February 28, 2008

Product Review - Carrying your Wipes in Style

When you're a mom, you quickly find out that one of the most important and most used necessities is the diaper wipe. Whether you're using them to wipe butts, faces or noses, diaper wipes are an essential item in the world of Mom.

Little did I realize as a young mother, just how long I would be buying diaper wipes. I always thought once he's out of diapers, what's the need for the wipes. Well let me tell you, I have realized just how wrong that thought was. My son is out of diapers, but I still find uses for wipes - wiping his runny noses, cleaning his messy face, getting the food off of his clothes, and so on. At least now, I have a stylish and fun way to carry this catchall product.

While many diaper wipes manufacturers have been kind enough to provide a traveling case to tote them around in, let's face it, plastic just isn't that exciting. Thankfully Shawna at Ballerinas and Buckaroos put her creative talent into designing fun, decorative and classy cases for moms who like to have their personality shine through their gear.

At Ballerinas and Buckaroos, there is a large selection of custom wipes cases to choose from. I, being the mom of a three-year-old who already thinks skateboarding is the coolest thing ever, choose the Skater theme wipes case. This wipes case allows me and my son to both show off our personalities ... I always had a "thing" for skaterboarders growing up :) But it also allows me to tote around the much used wipes conveniently.

Another favorite of mine - that I didn't notice until after I ordered my Skater theme case - is the My Little Monkey wipes case. This case just looks so adorable on the website. It's hard for this design not to grab my attention though, being that my nickname for Reagan is "monkey."

Ballerinas and Buckaroos has a variety of themes to choose from including classy gingham prints, fairies, sports and so much more. And Shawna has been so generous to offer all Living a Mom's Life readers a 15% discount on your purchase with coupon code SAV10 at checkout. So go on over to and pick out your favorite case to match you or your child(ren)'s personalities.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Swap the Old for the Old, But Different

As publicity coordinator of my local Mothers of Preschoolers group, I am in charge of sending out all the emails and notifying members of our events, among other things. I just finished emailing my group about one of my most favorite events that we do - the Clothing Swap!
I LOVE clothes! I love buying clothes for myself, and before my son was even born, I was stockpiling cute little outfits for him. My dad once told me that when I was working retail in clothing shops, it was like an alcholic working as a bartender! That is how bad I am :)
So needless to say, I am constantly going through my son's drawers, finding outfits that he's outgrown and trying to figure out what to do with them - outside of just bagging them up and putting them in the attic.
Thankfully, every year about this time, my MOPS group has our clothing swap. This is my chance to take those clothes that he outgrew during the year and trade them in for clothes in his size - or a year or so bigger for future use. This year I will be swapping a lot of 2T stuff for 4T or 5T toddler clothes.
Of course there are those items that I cannot part with. You know, the baptismal outfit, the Easter outfit, the first Christmas outfit. And alot of clothes now go to my one-year-old nephew. But the others, I'm more than happy to give to my friends, while taking their kids' clothes off of their hands.

Here are some more ways to "get rid" of that pile of outgrown clothes that are spilling over your child's drawers and closets:

* Pass them down to siblings/other family members/friends
* Give them to the Goodwill or DAV
* Make a little extra change by selling them at a yard sale
* Make even less change by selling them to a consignment shop
* Cut them up and get a little crafty with them - turn a baby sweater into a miniature pillow
* Have the really special items mounted in a shadow box and hung on the wall

I'd love to hear what you do with your outgrown kids' clothes. Leave a comment with a tip or unique idea.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Gotta love the 80s

I've been busy cleaning this morning. When cleaning I can't stand quiet, I just must have music playing so I can get energized and psyched up ... cleaning is not the most fun chore in the world you know.

So I turned on the 80s XM channel and have been remembering some great times in my life. For instance, right now the New Kids on the Block song "Don't Go Girl" is on .... Wow! That one brings back some memories! I was 13 and so excited to see the New Kids on the Block in concert with two of my best friends. I thought it was the coolest thing to get the autograph of one the group's roadies. And, of course, when Jonathan sang the Happy Birthday song I just knew he was singing it to me - I was celebrating my birthday just days after that concert after all.

I admit it - I was a HUGE New Kids on the Block fan. I had posters covering every inch of my bedroom walls - mostly individual photos of Jordan and Joey because they were the ultimate cuties of the group. I even had a New Kids on the Block pillow case and the Jordan and Joey dolls!

So since I'm reminiscing of the 80s today, I thought I'd post a video of one of the best Monday songs of the 80s. Who remembers this one?

So enjoy the video and feel free to share YOUR favorite 80s memories, singers, bands, actor/actresses ... anything that made the 80s special for you.

BTW, I hear rumblings that the New Kids on the Block are making a comeback .... looks like I may bring out my New Kids on the Block T-shirt back out of hiding.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Going Organic - Product Review

I've never been one to make a great effort to put organic products in my life - I don't eat organic food or use organic makeup, so when Michele Dupper with Miessence asked me to review a couple of products, I welcomed the new experience.

Miessence provides Certified Organic products that are grown and processed without the use of synthetic chemicals or fertilizers.

The Miessence products that I tested were the balancing cleanser and moisturizer for normal/combination skin. I must say that I was pleasantly surprised by the natural and refreshing smell of the skin care products. The cleanser has a fresh orange smell and left my face feeling very clean. I loved the moisturizer which contains organic rosehip seed oil, jojoba, calendula, chamomile, olive leaf, marshmallow and lavender.

After cleaning my face and feeling so refreshed, I was hesitant to put my makeup on! But even after applying makeup and going through my day as usual, I was excited to still be able to smell the fresh, clean smell of the skin care products.

And using these products at night was an even better experience! As I laid my head on my pillow at bedtime, I was enveloped by the orange, chamomile and lavender aroma as I drifted off t0 sleep.

Because I only used the products for about three days, I cannot atest to an actual change in my complexion, but the exhilerating smells and ease of use of the products have me contemplating finding out just how good they are on a more permanent basis.

I highly recommend to anyone who would like to learn more about these certified organic products visit Michele's website at

Linky Love Tag

It looks like I have been Linky Love Tagged - so I am passing the love along!

I have randomly placed 5 of my favorite blogs on the very bottom so please visit their wonderful blogs! Here’s the details that are passed along with this meme:(Do not replace, just keep on adding! Yes we hope it will be a long list!)
It’s real easy!
*Tag others and see your Technorati Authority increase exponentially!
*The benefits of Viral Linking:
1.One of the fastest ways to see your technorati authority explode!
2.Increase your Google PageRank fast
3.Attract large volume of new traffic to your site
4.Build your community
5.Make new friends!

Linky Love Tag

The Strategist Notebook
Link Addiction
Ardor of the Heart
When Life Becomes a Book
The Malaysian Life
What goes under the sun
Roshidan’s Cyber Station
Sasha says
Arts of Physics
And the legend lives
My View, My LifeA Simple Life
Juliana RW
Mom Knows Everything
Beth & Cory’s Mom
A Mind Forever Voyaging
enjoying the ride
Jennifer’s thoughts
Mom of 3 Girls
Don’t Make Me Get The Flying Monkeys
ExPat Mom
Just JessieWilson
Nuttier Than You
ShonnteSummer’s Nook
Laura Williams Musings
Melissa’s Idea Garden
Eve at Confessions of an Everyday Housewife
ChristiS of the Blah Blah Blog
Stephanie at Stop the Ride!
Diane at Soap, Blings & Girly Things
Amanda at Amanda:Mama’s Musings
Kristin at An Ordinary Life
Mama Zen at The Zen of Motherhood
Atomik Kitten
The Sassy Southerner
A Room of Mama’s Own
Exploring Autumn
Immoral Matriarch: Catechizer
Real Life
Living and loving every minute of it
The Daily Rhythm
The Rocky Mountain Retreat
Peace is Every Step
Life According to Lizzy
Following Forward
Boys Rule My Life
A Quest for Relevance
Not Trying for a Boy
The Gaspards
Orryally’s journal
My Life with Boys
The Truest Thing
The Potter’s Hand
Permission to Peruse
Live Laugh Blog
Heather’s Hot Mess
Kevin and Paula
Guidance for Victory
Sports Momma
The Home Team Wins
Sisters of a Different Order
Chased by Children
A Frog in My Soup
My Spunky Monkey
Tara’s View of the World
Living A Mom’s Life
Dawn-Sweet Pea Cakes etc Blog
True Tales of A MiniVan Mama

Sara's Jewels Boutique
My Mommy's Bracelets
I'm Pretty Boutique
QT Sunglasses
Baby Bling Boutique

Please take a few minutes to visit some of the blogs listed above. Even if you don’t see your name on the list- you can still participate in the meme and keep the Linky Love Tag going!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Budget Friendly Date Nights

If you're like me, it can be hard to find time to spend quality time with your husband without feeling like you're going to break the bank on a babysitter and the date. I try to "save up" using my parents as my babysitters for times when their services are necessary - which usually doesn't include a date night.

One option that seems to work for me and my husband is to swap babysitting duties with other parents. This helps erase the cost of babysitting so we can splurge a little more on the date. We also try to have dates that are budget friendly.

Fun doesn’t have to mean “expensive." Creative brainstorming with your hubby, a little resourcefulness, and the right attitude are all it takes to have fun on a shoestring! Consider some of the following ideas:

• Picnic at the park. Pack a tasty lunch and a bottle of wine if you’d like, and enjoy a lazy afternoon embraced by nature. Remember to bring a blanket, and keep the meal simple to avoid having to carry a lot of gear (Don’t forget the corkscrew, though!). If you picnic at a local forest preserve, you can enjoy hiking afterwards.

• All-season star gazing – is a terrific website for non-technical people with an interest in heavenly events like moon phases, asteroid showers, planet visibility, and seasonal constellations. Visit the website or subscribe to the newsletter for up-to-date information on interesting phenomena.

Drive to the best viewing location in your area. You can watch the sky show from the warmth of the car, or bring a blanket in mild weather and lay beneath the stars. A thermos of hot chocolate and a snack will add to the fun. Laying side-by-side beneath the cosmos has a way of putting things in perspective, and the peace that permeates the sleeping world, accompanied by late-night sounds of crickets and the rustling wind, create a relaxing, romantic environment for the two of you to simply enjoy.

• Backyard camp-out. Nothing is more relaxing for some couples than getting away from it all. You don’t have to wait for that long-planned vacation to escape together, though. Plan a camp-out in the backyard. Put your child(ren) to bed then raise the tent, build a fire, and relax away from phones, televisions, and all your day-to-day distractions.

P.S. Check in tomorrow for my review on Miessence organic cleanser and moisturizer.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

No One Tells You About ...

the Tough Three-And-a-Halfs! When you're a new mom you hear all sorts of horror stories about the terrible twos. But now one warns you about the real age when your child starts defying all of your requests and his ears totally turn off to your voice.

My three-and-a-half year old son has been a nearly perfect child since even before he was born. I had an extremely easy pregnancy working every day at my job until the day I went into labor. I never even had morning sickness. The birth was just as wonderful - fairly short and sweet for my first child. Reagan has always had a calm and kind demeanor, and for the most part has taken mom and dad's words as the gospel. That is until now.

It's like one day my toddler went from barely sitting on the "Naughty Time Out Step" to being placed there for most the day. He suddenly has forgotten his name - at least when I call it - and his hearing has diminished to only working when the words "ice cream" or "candy" are spoken.

My once easy child now spits, kicks, screams and hits when Mommy or Daddy says something he doesn't want to hear. And the words "Love you Mommy," have been replaced with "Leave Me Alone Mommy."

Now that I'm going through this stage with my toddler friends are starting to admit that they to have been here. It seems like I have at least another year of battles, according to the few people who have walked this path before me.

At least there are some glimmers of the pre- tough three-and-a-half year old child. For now I hold onto the random "You're my best friend, Mommy," and "Great Job, Mommy." I remind myself that there are many phases that I will go through with my son and that we will make it through them all.

So now I'm asking you guys for help. I need to know that I'm not just one of the handful of women I've found so far who have found the three-and-a-halfs to be tougher than the twos. I would love for you to leave a comment with a brief story about your child's 3.5 stage. You women with older children who have been through this, please share how you made it through -a tip, trick or advice would be great!

I'll be offering a $5 gift certificate to My Little Monkey Boutique to one lucky person by using to pick a winner from the comments. All you have to do is comment to be entered!

I'll also give a free Time Management for Moms Ebook to the person who comments with the best tip, trick or advice on how to make it through this tough stage without pulling all of your hair out!

The winners will be chosen Friday, Feb. 29th and announced Saturday, March 1!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Mister Independent

My 3-year-old is showing his independence more and more every day. Usually he lets me know he can do his own thing by putting on his underwear by himself, or helping himself to a "blue juice" (Capri Sun) from the fridge.
This morning he decided he was going to make his own breakfast - only I wasn't awake yet and his breakfast consisted of Ice Cream Dibs. Most mornings I am woken up at 7 a.m. by my son's smiling face and his beautiful voice telling me "Time to Wake Up, the Sun's Up, Momma." Well today I woke on my own at 9 a.m. I hopped up out of bed, knowing that Reagan couldn't still be asleep. I heard the TV on in the den and as I walked around the corner, there he was sitting Indian style in our big lounge chair with the box of Dibs in his lap.
I don't know whether to be worried or eager to see what he does tomorrow.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Showing Off My Love - Product Review

From the adorable polka dot packaging to the prettier in person photo necklace, my transaction with The Polka Dot Daisy was more than I could ever hope for. When I came across a sale right before Christmas from The Polka Dot Daisy I took a look in her store and found such beautiful necklaces and bracelets. What drew me to her products was that they are photo jewelry. I love all sorts of jewelry, but jewelry that allows me to show off my one and only son is even better!
I ordered the blue beaded necklace for myself, and a multicolored necklace for my mom. My mother's photo necklace was her Christmas present from me. She tells me all the time that it was her favorite present and she wears it often displaying my son and my brother's child in the double-sided charm.
Shipping was fast, and the necklaces were packaged very nicely in cute little polka dotted chinese boxes. I even used the box as the wrapping for my mom's necklace.
Amy, with The Polka Dot Daisy, is such a pleasure to work with. Although she no longer carries the exact necklace that I bought, she still offers necklaces with the beaded style - both elegant and chunky glass. She now focuses on soldered photo necklaces that allow you to change your charms around to different bead styles.
I will definitely keep The Polka Dot Daisy in mind for future purchases. If you love handcrafted products, or items that allow you to show off the ones you love in a unique way, The Polka Dot Daisy is worth a visit.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Product Review Tomorrow - The Polka Dot Daisy

So tomorrow I will have my review of a necklace I received from the This company and its owner is just amazing to work with. And the jewelry is beautiful. It will be a perfect review to release on Valentine's Day since you can get necklaces featuring your loved ones! My necklace now holds my son's photo and I proudly wear it often. Check back in tomorrow for a picture of my photo necklace and the review.
I hope everyone has a good Valentine's Day - mine will be spent mostly with my littlest love - my son!

Monday, February 11, 2008

And The Winner Is....

Beloved Mama is the winner of the Monogrammed Roll Neck Sweater from My Little Monkey Boutique!

Because I do not have Beloved Mama's email address - could you please contact me at aprilm26 @ mylittlemonkeyboutique . com (take out the spaces) - by Friday, Feb. 15th?


Thank you to everyone who participated! My Little Monkey Boutique is offering a 15% discount to Living a Moms Life readers with coupon code MONKEY15 - good until March 21, 2o08.

Make sure to check my blog frequently for more giveaways, product reviews and original ramblings!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Fighting Sciatica

It's been a couple days since blogging due to getting bit by the flu bug! But also as I was just getting over the flu it looks like I pinched my sciatic nerve. Not good!Wednesday was a day filled with unbearable pain. No matter what position I tried, I could not get relief. I couldn't sit, stand, bend, walk ... oh it was just awful. I found out it was sciatica after going to the doctor later in the day. Now I'm supposed to be getting phyiscal therapy for it, but since my insurance doesn't cover any therapist in my town - only covering a doctor ONE HOUR away - I opted for a chiropractor. Hopefully after a few more sessions next week I will be back to my normal self.Since I can't sit for long periods of time, I can't be online as much either. Oh, and guess what else I can't do for the next few days ... lift my son, carry a laundry basket, bend down to pick up stuff off the floor or vacuum. How easy is this going to be with a 3-year-old son??! Not easy at all.My house is a mess and it's all I can do not to bend over to pick things up and put them in their place. I'm going to go crazy before this is all over :)I guess one good thing that will come out of this is ... I'll definitely be motivated and ready to clean and tidy up once I'm given the go ahead!

Last Day to Enter

Today is the final day to enter the Monogrammed Roll Neck Sweater giveaway! For details just read to the post below that includes the adorable picture of my son wearing his monogrammed sweater! I am taking entried until midnight EST tonight. I will announce the winner on Monday right here on my blog!

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

So What Do You Think?

Although I'm struggling to maintain some sense of normalcy around here (to add on to my back pain, I seemed to have caught the flu too), I wanted to take a minute to publicly thank Shera of Sweet N Simple Design for the amazing new custom blog design.
The design was inspired by my son, Reagan. My nickname for him is "Monkey" and sometimes I feel like I'm living in a jungle! The giraffe is ME :) At 5'9" I'm taller than many of my friends, so they often call me a giraffe. I even had a friend give me a decorative giraffe for Christmas one year.
I would love it if you would take a couple minutes to comment on my new blog design! I really love it, and working with Shera was just the best experience. For anyone looking for a new blog design, I highly suggest you check out Sweet N Simple Design.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Getting a Facelift

I am so excited to have won a new blog design from Sweet N Simple Designs during a contest sponsored by A Frog in My Soup! The designer and I are working on something fun - something that shows off just how wild life can be when you are a mother to a toddler son. Please check back to see my fun, new blog design. I hope to reveal it within the next week.