Birthday Parade: Kaylee Like– Inspired By Finn Review

I have heard so much about Amber jewelry helping with pain management, but I was skeptical.  I couldn’t figure out how simply wearing a piece of jewelry would help alleviate pain, but I needed to try it.  Kaylee was already showing signs of pain from teething and I was lucky enough to be able to review a beautiful Inspired By Finn Honey Round Amber Necklace. 

Among other things, amber is a natural analgesic (pain reliever) and anti-inflammatory. When amber is worn on the skin, the warmth of the skin releases trace amounts of healing oils on the skin. Commonly known as “teething jewelry,” baltic amber has been a natural and traditional European remedy for teething discomfort for hundreds of years. To read more about the many benefits of baltic amber, click here http://hyenacart.com/inspiredbyfinn/index.php?c=64&p=14913


At first I thought no way will this help with her teething pain, but it was beautiful still and would look adorable on Kay.  As the days rolled on I noticed that while she was still in pain, she didn’t cry as much or chew on stuff as much as she was in previous days.  I was shocked and in love all at once and since receiving the necklace it has barely been taken off.  I worried that she would pull on it, chew it or try to take it off, but since having it on she has paid almost no interest to it. 
I love that the clasp is a screw close rather than a normal clasp.  With the screw clasp you don’t have to worry about breaking of the clasp and having little pieces of normal clasps being put into your little ones mouth.  Another design feature I love is that there is a knot between each bead so should the necklace break that only one bead falls off and you don’t have little beads all over that your little one can put into their mouth and choke on.  Inspired By Finn really put little children into thought when designing their necklaces and because of this they are the only company I suggest when my mommy friends are looking into amber jewelry not only for their little ones, but themselves as well.
You can also find Inspired By Fin one Facebook.

{Buy It}
You can buy the beautiful necklace like I received as well as other amber jewelry on their website.
To learn how to save up to 25% off ANY purchase with Inspired by Finn, go here.
 
I received the product/s mentioned above for this review. No monetary compensation was received by me. This is my honest opinion.

Birthday Parade: Khloe Like– Squinkie Doos Review & Giveaway

Khloe is obsessed with Squinkies, so it would come as no surprise that they would be featured in the Birthday Parade.  We were lucky enough to receive the Squinkie Doos Salon Playset and two Squinkie Doos Bubble Packs.  Khloe was in love right away because now one of her favorite toys had hair she could brush and style. 

Like the original Squinkies, the Squinkie Doos are just as adorable.  Now featuring hair you can brush and style as to the fun.  Whether you want to put your Squinkie Doo’s hair into a pony tail or a braid the styles are endless even on these little guys.  The Salon Playset was simply adorable with a cute little seat to sit your Squinkie Doos on and a pretend over head dryer your little ones can pretend they own a salon with them.  Included in the playset and bubble packs were adorable little brushes and a hair dryer. 

Squinkies are recommended for ages 4 and up and it really should be followed.  Keira is 3 and while she is mature for her age, several times when Khloe had out her Squinkie Doos I noticed that Keira would play with them, but every so often would still put one into her mouth.  Of course I knew for sure not to let Kaylee near them and several times when Khloe had dropped a few and I hadn’t noticed Kaylee put them into her mouth right away.  Of course Khloe generally keeps an eye on them all, but will become distracted by something every so often and leave them out in the open.  If you have younger children you don’t want to play with them you are fine as long as you can keep an eye on play time with Squinkie Doos.  I will admit I myself love putting them into their little balls and watching as they come out of their playsets.  Khloe loves having mommy play with her and it does help to be sure that the littles don’t put them into their mouths.

Squinkies can be found on their website, blog, Facebook and Twitter.  If you follow them they often offer giveaways and fun trivia and contests to win them.

{Buy It}
Squinkie Doos can be purchased at Toys R US. 
 
{Win It}
One lucky reader will win 2 Squinkie Doos bubble ball packs.

{Mandatory Entry}

Visit the Squinkies website and tell me which is your favorite.

You must also GFC follow my blog and leave your email address in at least one comment or have it public in your profile so I can reach you


{Additional Entries}

Like Squinkies on Facebook
Follow Squinkies on Twitter
Subscribe to the Squinkies Newsletter on their blog
   
Need more entries? Visit here

Giveaway ends on April 22nd @ 11:59pm (EST).  Winners will be notified by e-mail and will be listed on this blog.  Winner has 48 hours to reply to my email with the requested details before another winner is picked. Open to US residents 18+. Winner can not have previously won in any other Squinkies contest or giveaway. 

I received the product/s mentioned above for this review. No monetary compensation was received by me. This is my honest opinion.

Birthday Parade: Everyone Like – Baby Rock Apparel Review

Anyone that knows us will tell you we are not the average family.  Our beliefs in parenting and life are far different from most people we know and our taste in clothing, while still cute borders on rocker/grunge.  It only seemed fitting that I would feature Baby Rock Apparel during our Birthday Parade.  If your style in clothing is like ours and want to dress your children to match your style while still showing of their cuteness they have everything you need.

I had the chance to review the Lil Sis “Spoil & Love” which was adorable and fit our style perfectly.  I knew Kay would look adorable in it and I loved that it showcased she was the Lil Sis.  Khloe and Keira loved the shirt when they saw it and giggled with excitement knowing that it said that she was their little sister.  We received a 6-12m which had me a little worried because Kay is sprouting up very fast and with a cloth diaper on we often need to go up a size, but I was surprised how well it fit her.  She is still wearing it with room to grow and just turned a year old.  The shirt is made of 100% Rib cotton, which I found to be very soft on my precious little one and features a neckline designed for easy on and off over the head.  The website says they run small, but I actually found them very true to size in comparison with other shirts this size, but if you are worried you could always purchase them the next size up to be safe.

Baby Rock Apparel offer many other unique and cute designs for other parents like us.  From super cute tutus and pettiskirts to adorable footwear and even diaper bags for mom’s on the go to have a hip diaper bag to showcase your style.  Just because you’ve become a mom doesn’t mean you have to change and with Baby Rock Apparel you can not only keep your style you can share it with your little one.  Whether looking for a unique gift for your hip rocker parents to be or something for your own little one Baby Rock Apparel is sure to have something you’ll love.  You can even stay up to date by joining their mailing list and receive exclusive offers easily to your email.


{Buy It}
You can purchase any of the products as well as others at Baby Rock Apparel.  You can also use coupon code karine for 15% until April 7th.
 
I received the product/s mentioned above for this review. No monetary compensation was received by me. This is my honest opinion.

Drama Queens Birthday Parade comes to an end!

My event didn’t turn out like I planned.  I did not expect for a computer crash and the never ending cold to hit just as I began my event.  I had planned for it to run a little more smoothly with at least one review and one giveaway posted each week, but in the end that didn’t work out very well for me.  I want to thank everyone for reading and entering, as well as thank my sponsors for providing amazing products for review and giveaway.  I also want to apologize, if I had known that my event would have gone this way I might have held off on it, but such is life and you can always be 100% prepared.  I am about to write up the last of my reviews that I have gotten behind with.  Thank you again and stay tuned because I have a couple of coupon codes with them.  Once I am done getting caught up I will be drawing winners for the giveaways that have ended.

Birthday Parade: Mommy Like – Walgreens Brand Extra Strength Pain Reliever

This is a compensated post written by me on behalf of Walgreens. All opinions are 100% mine.
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PharmacistAs a mom of three girls I often find myself stressed through out the day.  I have suffered from headaches most of my life and I find myself with them more now that I am a mom.  Day to day life as a mom of drama queens involves tantrums, screaming and fights and that is on a good day.  I was lucky enough to try the Walgreens Brand Extra Strength Pain Reliever Quick Gels  for this review.  I have purchased it in the past, so it only seemed fitting between my headaches and how much I already love the product to choose it and share it with my readers.

We live within walking distance of our local Walgreens, so when I am in desperate need of pain relief my husband can easily head out and pick me up some pain relief.  Having Walgreens Brand Health & Wellness Products so close to us I find it relieving to know that a brand I can trust is within reach.   When I find myself in a pinch and in need of some pain relief it’s great to know I have some where to turn.  I have found not only does the pain reliever help my headaches, but it also helps with my worsening arthritis.

Walgreens Brand Health & Wellness products I have come to love and trust.  In a time when we have found ourselves pinching the pennies Walgreens helps us to save on items we need on a daily basis.  Just because they are not a “name” brand product doesn’t mean they work any less.  The Pain Reliever worked just as well, if not better in relieving the throbbing my daughters caused in my head.  We opt to save a few dollars, but still get get the pain relief we are searching for.

Walgreens Brand Health & Wellness Products not only help to save money that you can use for other family needs, but they are recommended by the Walgreens pharmacists.  Most of them actually contain the same active ingredients as other national brands and have a 100% satisfaction guarantee.  You can learn more about Walgreens Brand Health & Wellness Products on their website.  Purchase of Walgreens Brand Health & Wellness Products helps support preventive wellness services to local communities with Walgreens Way to Well Fund™. Feel free to share your thoughts and experiences with Walgreens Brand Health & Wellness Products, or try them out for the first time by visiting any of their stores nationwide or online.
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Sunday Share: Museum of Science

We have wanted to take the girls to the Museum of Science for quite some time now, but the cost to go was out of what we could afford.  As luck would have it one of the homeschool email groups I am part of was organizing a field trip and would cost us less than it would cost for only one of us to visit the museum alone.  I signed up just in the nick of time because within minutes of sending my email they announced the trip was closed and no one else could sign up.

The girls waited patiently as we counted down the days until the trip.  We talked every day about what we would see there and they were most excited about the dinosaur bones.  I tried to tell them there would be a lot more than just dinosaur bones to see, but they just didn’t want to hear it.

The second we entered the museum the girls went insane (in a good way) and began racing all over as they couldn’t decide what to look at first.  Electricity, motion, physics, theories and button up button to be looked at and touched left uncertain of where to go.  We tried to keep to a plan of attack on how to take in as much as possible.  I will admit the girls did great, getting a little restless here and there, but over all enjoying everything they saw.  They would linger, listen and take in everything they saw and it was tough to pull them away from one section with the promise of more to come.

Right before lunch we headed to the human body exhibits and the girls were in awe.  They loved looking at all the models of organs and bones.  I love that most of this section is hands on and that they could actually look, touch and take apart the models and really see what was inside our bodies.  Right across from this section was human reproduction, which at first I wondered if it was age appropriate for them and decided they would eventually learn it so we might as well take them to see it.  Keira walked around looking at the models, while Khloe walked through each area with me asking questions.  She loved looking at the different stages of pregnancy and the baby growing.  I didn’t go into details on how babies are made, but explained to her she was seeing the baby getting bigger inside the body like when her and her sisters were in mommy’s belly.  She was amazed and took it all in.

Next it was time for lunch and we could tell they were hungry and becoming tired so we decided after lunch we would visit the dinosaur exhibit and head home.  We ate quickly and headed to the bones.  They couldn’t get enough of the size and that they were actually bones and fossils from the dinosaurs.  Kaylee was even excited in this area and ran all over with excitement to see the different bones.  When Khloe decided to sit back down in the stroller we knew it was time to get ready to leave.

I thought Khloe would be most interested in the dinosaurs, but still today, coming up on 2 weeks after our trip she talks about the reproduction exhibit.  Telling us how it was her inside mommy’s belly and how she got big and then came out.  Perhaps she will be so interested in it like myself that she will become a midwife or OB/GYN.  Whatever way our homeschooling journey takes, whichever field they decide to study I know that we can turn to Studypoint for all their tutoring needs or to help keep mommy in the loop on what they are talking about.  In the end we had an amazing day and we all learned and saw a lot.

Birthday Parade: Mommy Like – Pier 1 Spring Outdoor!

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Pier 1 for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

Once the weather is warm here in Boston you will barely ever find us inside during the day.  Whether out for a walk or just relaxing in the backyard we will not be sitting inside on the couch.  With Spring just around the corner (the first day of Spring is this Sunday March 20th) we need to prepare the yard to accommodate us during the warmer months.  Pier 1 has you covered for you outdoor needs this year.

When I begin to clean and decorate outside I love to start with seating.  Of course seating is a must, not only for entertaining, but lounging around while the girls play.  Of course I want something not only attractive, but comfortable and functional.  That is why I really love the Outdoor Wicker Rocker, Outdoor Wicker Settee, Outdoor Single or Double Papasan or Outdoor Swingasan Chair. These chairs will not only look beautiful in the yard, but you can pair them up with some of the amazing cushions like the Whimsical Garden Cushions or the beautiful and bold Citron cushions.


Of course you can’t sit around without a table.  I really love the Outdoor Dining Table paired with the pretty Hot Stripe Umbrella and some matching chairs.  Now your not complete without the Green Metal Beverage Tub or some beautiful throw pillows like the Oblong Stripe Pillow.  Lastly the lovely Black and White Outdoor Planters (that come in a set of 3) complete your sitting area making it comfortable and functional whether entertaining or having a lazy day in the yard.

 

What I particularly love about most about the furniture and decor for this season is that I don’t have to worry about it in the yard during the harsh New England winter.  Not only is it all stylish, but many of the pieces can be used inside when they weather becomes cold.  I can easily transfer in most of the seating and decor before the first snow without having to worry about it becoming destroyed.  I know those lovely planters I showed you will make a nice addition inside for some beautiful house plants or the Swingasan Chair will fit in nicely with our living room furniture for some added seating.  With the  Spring collection this year you will easily find many outdoor and indoor uses for many of the beautiful items.

 

Sign up for the Pier 1 Outdoor newsletter to get full details sent to you about their first day of Spring celebration.

Pier 1 will also be having some Tweet Ups coming up:
Dallas: March 22nd
Atlanta: April 5th
NYC: Aprild 20th

To find out more details about dates and times visit Pier 1 Tweetups

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Happy Birthday Kaylee!!

How can it be that a year has already gone by?  It seems like it was just days ago that I was waiting to go into labor to attempt a VBA2C and here we are celebrating her first birthday.  One year ago today at 1:27am, 7lbs 15.6oz and 20.5″ long Kaylee Mary made her entrance into this world.  It’s hard to believe how much she has learned in just a short year.  She took her first steps on Christmas Day, and slowly took more and more until by the end of January she was full on walking.  She says several words in her cute little voice and is constantly full of laughter.

To my sweet little Kaylee Bug, mommy and daddy were truly blessed to have you join our family.  Keira is beyond in love with you, as you are her.  I can see you are both going to have an amazing relationship as you get older.  I can see, though you might not always show it that you love Khloe tons too, but she can be a lot to handle.  I can’t believe you have been in our life for a whole year already, while I am sad you are no longer a baby I look forward to all your new firsts that will come over the next year.  May you continue to have your adorable, bubbly personality and continue to fill our hearts with your laughter and smiles.  We love you Kaylee Bug and I hope you had an amazing birthday! 


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Hey What Happened to the Personal?!?!?!?!

So I have become not so personal on my blog as of probably Sept. It was by no means intentional, but at the time I had a lot of issues family wise (both my family and my in-laws).  Then came the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, which immediately precedes the birthday parade.
When I started blogging I intended to remain as personal and family oriented with the occasional review and/or giveaway, but began to enjoy sharing products I might not normally have purchased without receiving it from the company or PR rep.  I have also posted quite a few sponsored posts, but in our current financial situation every penny helps, so I might as well utilize my blog as such if the money is there.

Even my review and/or giveaway posts have suffered over the last few months.  I had a vision when I began planning for the Drama Queens Birthday Parade Event.  Never did I imagine to feel abandoned by my own family (not my hubby and daughters, but my mother, sister, grandmother, aunts, uncles and cousins) which resulted in being hit by horrible depression and lacking interest in much of what normally brings me joy.  We planned to attend Christmas dinner at my uncle’s home being that he is closer than where it was usually held and we’d be able to get there without a problem.  Mere days (like 12/23) before Christmas, no food purchased for the holiday (which we have prepared for our little family and the in-laws since 2008) and not so much as a few dollars put aside that wasn’t spent on gifts for the girls I receive a call from my grandmother that went something like this;
Grandmother: “I just spoke with your uncle and he says there is no room for you to attend dinner, but you are welcome to come for dessert.”
Myself (I may or may not have come off snarky): “Thanks for telling me with no time to purchase anything for us to have for the holiday.  You’ve known since Thanksgiving and I have been trying to get you to find out if it is ok that we come.”

Grandmother: “Well you can come for dessert still, but please don’t talk about welfare, foodstamps or your housing search.”

At this point I just mumbled something and got off the phone.  I was hurt, upset PISSED!  I was only several weeks away from turning 29, an adult, but being treated like a child and told what I could and couldn’t talk about.  I felt abandoned, like my family did not care.  My mother, sister and nephew live out of state so these “family” (yes because I barely consider them that anymore) didn’t care that my little family would now be basically alone, without a meal on a major holiday.  I turned to Facebook, vented to friends, fellow bloggers and mommies like me.  This resulted in my uncle and grandmother becoming aware of how I felt, but neither could be bothered to call me.  I should have expected that from this uncle since he won’t accept a friend request and has never so much as sent a message asking how myself, hubby or the girls are.

Still hurt and depressed over this my hubby rushes to cash his check on Christmas Eve, head to the grocery store before it closes and pick up as much as he could for a holiday meal.  In the end our Christmas was perfect, the girls loved everything they got and it worked our great because we could remain home so they could play with their new toys.  While I missed the days before marriage and kids, with dessert, coffee and a few glasses of wine while playing board games a family I learned that we as a family need not rely on anyone else and we’ll begin our own traditions as our girls grow. 

All while this is going on, my new laptop crashed on the same day my grandmother called me.  All saved email pertaining to the event, pictures, bookmarks and anything I needed/wanted saved was lost.  I try to back it up before having to do a full system restore and the file said stuff was in there, but when I tried to restore it there was nothing.  I had planned to begin writing reviews/giveaways to publish on their own as the event began on 1/1, but that didn’t happen because I had to try and find as many emails I lost pertaining to the reviews.

Birthday season arrived pretty good, but began the attack of the snowstorms here in MA., and the never ending colds that lasted weeks upon weeks.  The month long colds ended, to be followed by yet another cold/fever outbreak and I seriously began contemplating quarantining our entire house to avoid more illness.  We still are battling colds as I type this.

I have gotten so down that I even began thinking about no longer blogging or taking a “Bloggy Break” to enjoy some mommy time and family time, but slowly I am getting out of my slump.  So I turn to you, my faithful readers, in hopes to stimulate my mind and share a little more about the family and myself.  What would you like to learn more about?  I am an open book and will answer all questions (within reason that is, i.e. if I believe the answer might hurt someone I know to be reading I might refrain from answering or not fully answering).  I want to interact with my readers more and I even invite you to friend me on my personal Facebook
page.  So ask away!  Heck I am even willing to take pictures of random family life stuff.

Birthday Parade: Everyone Like–Bummas Review & Giveaway

By now everyone knows we cloth diaper.  We have part time cloth diapered since Keira was an infant in the summer of 2008, we have full time cloth diapered Kaylee since she was about two weeks old last March and in July we transitioned Keira into full cloth.  When we started cloth diapering we just used disposable wipes. In the newborn phase and exclusive breastmilk poop not needing a pre-rinse before washing resulted in the pain staking task of removing all disposable wipes from diapers before washing.  More often than not one or more wipes got missed and were found in the washer after removing diapers, this is when we began introducing cloth wipes.

IMG_0786I was lucky enough to have won a set of The Tropical Ones Bummas wipes and was in instant love.  They are soft enough for Kaylee’s little bottom, but durable enough for Keira’s Pre-K bottom.  My first thought on the wipes were how vibrant their colors are, but thought they wouldn’t hold the color after frequent washing.  I was pleasantly surprised how amazing the colors still look today after at least 30 washes. 

IMG_0789The wipes are 100% Cotton, Woven Velour Terry Cloth milled in the USA and 5” x 7” in size.  Perfect for SAHM or can be easily put inside a diaper bag or pocket book for moms on the go.  I love that not only do they cater to our family’s attempt to become greener and more money conscious, but they are also made right here in the USA.

No longer have a little one in diapers?  Bummas are still for you!  We also use our wipes as washcloths when in a rush.  Within reach of our kitchen and living room is our diaper storage area so after a particularly messy dinner or art project they are right there ready to be used on a tough mess.

Don’t have any children at all?  Or they have all grown up and moved away?  Bummas are a great gift for new parents to be whether cloth diapering or not.  With their beautiful colors you can pair them up with a cloth diaper or bath items as a shower gift or a welcome baby gift.

{Buy It}
You can purchase Bummas wipes on their website as well as many online and brick and mortar retailers worldwide!

{Win It}
One lucky reader will win a Bummas set of their choice.
{Mandatory Entry}

Like Bummas on Facebook.

You must also GFC follow my blog and leave your email address in at least one comment or have it public in your profile so I can reach you.

 
{Additional Entries}

Visit Bummas website and tell me which set you would pick if you won.
Follow Bummas on Twitter.
Need more entries? Visit here

Giveaway ends on March 29th @ 11:59pm (EST).  Winners will be notified by e-mail and will be listed on this blog.  Winner has 48 hours to reply to my email with the requested details before another winner is picked. Open to US residents 18+. 
I won the product/s mentioned above for this review. No monetary compensation was received by me. This is my honest opinion.