Mommy Katie: March 2017

Thursday, March 30, 2017

#Giveaway Idiotest Family Night Prize Pack with Ovation Brands Restaurants


When it comes to family night outs, I find that I like to seek out those family friendly restaurants that offer foods that we can all enjoy. During the weeknights when we go out, I like to seek out the restaurants that allow us to get in quickly, eat and even have some fun. And one line up of restaurants that we like to head to are the ones from the Ovation Brands line up. So when we heard about the Idiotest Family Nights going on each Thursday through April 6th, we were not only excited to go and check it out but also share with our readers!

See when we head out for the family night dinners and activities that are offered at the various Ovation Brands Restaurants, we know that we will not only be able to get a great selection of foods from the buffets, but also enjoy some family fun time as well. Because from 5-8 on the family nights at the Ovation line up of participating restaurants as well as the Furr's Fresh Buffet locations, the kids can join in with the interactive and educational activities that are offered.

Allowing us as a family to wind down on Thursday nights, not worry about having to cook, get a meal where everyone can get something they like, and have fun. Which in all makes the choice to head to a Ovation Brand restaurant or Furr's Fresh Buffet, one that everyone can agree on when we go on family fun night! And to help with making your next family night out a fun one, the wonderful people from Ovation Brands would like to give one of my amazing readers a Ovation Brands prize pack which will include 1) pair of Idiotest Glasses, one (1) Idiotest stylus bracelet, one (1) Idiotest stress brain and four (4) free meal passes for you and your family to enjoy a meal at any of Ovation Brands’ locations.





Product received, thank you to Ovation Brands as well as the PR for supplying me with a product for this review, all opinions are my own.

Spring Birthday Cakes Delivered with 1-800-Baskets.com's 'Bake Me A Wish!' Birthday Cakes


When it comes to celebrating a birthday, we find that it is a special day each year in our friends and families lives. We enjoy seeking out those gifts, setting up the parties, and celebrating another year with those we care about. The thing is, as the years go by we find that we might not always be able to be near those we care about and celebrate those birthdays. So like many, I turn to places like 1-800 Baskets.com where I can find the gifts and treats like the 1-800-Baskets.com's 'Bake Me A Wish!' Birthday Cakes that can be delivered to those I care about on their special day.


With the Bake Me a Wish! cakes, you can send a delicious, gourmet cake to your recipient that is made from the finest ingredients, and give them a gift that is sure to make their day extra special. We found the Bake Me a Wish! Vanilla Bean Birthday Cake to be a cake that is perfect for sending as a birthday gift. The cake is layered with a yellow cake and sweet vanilla bean cream frosting. The flavors are amazing and with the rainbow confetti sprinkles that are on the sides, you get a cake that is not only tasty but also festive!

Then when it comes to the delivery, we found that the cake came packaged in a very nice box, which makes it perfect for gift giving! Making the choice to shop the line of birthday cakes from the 1-800-Baskets.com's 'Bake Me A Wish!' Birthday Cakes one that you and your recipient are sure to appreciate this spring as you celebrate those birthdays!



Product received, thank you to 1-800 Flowers.com as well as the PR for supplying me with the product for this review, all opinions are my own.

Covered Goods Nursing Cover



As Heather and her family find their routine with little Zoey, we find that having the tools at hand to help make things easier in both the home and when away from home can help to make all the difference. And like many breastfeeding moms, Heather finds that having tools such as a pump and a cover on hand, can help to make her journey a little easier. So when we were sent the Covered Goods Nursing Cover to review, I knew that Heather would appreciate having it and also sharing her review on the cover with our readers! 



When it comes to feeding my baby girl when I am out and about, this will keep me covered, and when little Zoey is eating, she won't be able to kick or pull it off.  This is easy to get on and off and the wide neck allows me to make sure she is latched on the way she needs to be. I also like that this can also be worn as a stylish infinity scarf as well. And when we are out, I can also put this over her car seat so she stays warmer on the cold and windy days. 

Then as she gets older, we will be able to use it in a shopping cart to help keep the germs away from her touching the cart. This nursing cover folds away for simple storage and is comfortable, lightweight, very stretchy, and comes in several different patterns. And with one size fits most, this will give me a feeling of security when I'm out in public. Making the nursing cover from Covered Goods a great choice to go with when seeking a nursing cover that is multifunctional! 


Product received, thank you to Covered Goods as well as the PR for supplying me with the product for this review, all opinions are my own.

Lässig Swaddle and Burp Blankets


When it comes to preparing for a new baby, as parents, we find that no matter how seasoned we might be, that there is a lot needed to have in place. Like many, I have found that you can never have enough swaddles or burp cloths, so when we were sent the Lässig Swaddle and Burp Blankets set to review, I was excited for Heather to check them out with little Zoey and share her thoughts on the products with our readers!


These are a staple for anyone who has a baby. The blankets are made with a soft, breathable muslin fabric that is easy to swaddle baby in, and since my little girl loves to be swaddled, these are excellent. We got the X- large size and it wraps her up like a little burrito and she can't escape. 

Then when it comes to other uses we can get from the swaddles, we find that they are also great for a quick cover to nurse or even as a light cover for a car seat or stroller, and also can be used as a burp cloth. The blankets are made of 100% cotton makes them soft and lightweight, and I like that these blankets will stay soft wash after wash. There are several different sizes and design and I am sure you will find one that you will love. Which in all makes the Lässig Swaddle and Burp Blankets a great swaddle blanket to go with when you have a baby in the home as well as a great gift to give the new and expecting parents!





Product received, thank you to Lassig as well as the PR for supplying me with the product for this review, all opinions are my own.

Spring Refreshments made with LEAF® Vodka

This post was sponsored by LEAF® Vodka. All opinions are my own.


The winter weather is behind us and spring has officially sprung, and with that I find that aside from the nicer weather that I also look forward to those outdoor gatherings. Like many, I enjoy the evenings with friends, and the afternoon brunches as we enjoy the day together. And like many, when it comes to these occasions, I seek out not only those recipes for the treats and meal items, but also the recipes for the refreshing drinks that we can enjoy. So when I was sent some LEAF® Vodka along with a line up of recipes to try, I was excited to add some of them to my list of must have spring drinks and also share them!


See with LEAF® Vodka, you get a vodka where the main ingredient is water, and the water is not just any water either. Instead you get a line of vodka that uses USA sourced waters that are unique and come in varieties such as Alaskan Glacial water as well as Rocky Mountain mineral water, which give LEAF® Vodka those signature tastes. And when it comes to the uniqueness, I like that you not only get amazing flavor due to the waters that are used, but you also get a vodka that is USDA Certified Organic, and is the vodka of choice with some of the nations leading mixologists!



INGREDIENTS: 
2 oz LEAF Vodka made from Alaskan Glacial Water 
2 raspberries 
2 blueberries 
1 blackberry 
3 oz lemonade 
1 oz soda water 

Tools: Muddler
Method: Muddle berries at bottom of glass. Top with ice and fill with lemonade and soda water. Gently stir. 
Glassware: Collins
Garnish: Fresh berries

Then when it comes to the flavor, you can find that the unique freshness that you get from LEAF® Vodka, allows you to create those spring mixes that are perfect for serving during your spring gatherings. These drinks include ones where you can incorporate those fresh berries like when you make a Berry Ice as seen in the recipe above, or a refreshing Lychee Lake as seen in the recipe below.  



Ingredients:
2 oz. LEAF Vodka made with Rocky Mountain Mineral Water
1.5 oz. lychee puree (perfect puree)
0.5 oz. grapefruit juice
0.5 oz. lemon juice
1 oz. sparking rosé wine

Tools: Mixing shaker, jigger, strainer, and muddler. 

Method: Shake all ingredients except rosé wine, add ice and shake vigorously
Strain into a martini glass, top off with sparkling rosé, garnish and serve.
Glassware: Martini

Garnish: Orchid 

Which in all makes it to where adding LEAF® Vodka to your next gathering, will not only help to make those unique drinks stand out for your guests, but also be a choice that others will ask about as you show off your own mixology skills. So as you plan out those spring dinners and brunches with friends, be sure to add some spring refreshments to the menu with LEAF® Vodka. Also, be sure to submit your own drink recipes as you mix it up on the LEAF® Vodka Facebook Page, where water is the spirit of vodka.

Twitter:   @LEAFVodka

Instagram:  @LEAFVodka





Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Adding a New Member to the Family with Petcurean

This post is sponsored and written by me on behalf of Petcurean through a campaign managed by their PR. All opinions are my own.


When it comes to my family and making big decisions, I find that in my home, depending on the decision at hand, that aside from discussing with my husband, we also like to include our kids in and get their input as well. This allows us to include everyone, and gives everyone a chance to voice their concerns and take all into consideration. We find that with the family decisions, we make them together over things such as vacation planning, holidays, and when we find that it is time to add a new member to the family. And over the past few months, aside from planning our next family vacation, we have been discussing the possibility of adding a new fur baby member to our family. So naturally, as we make plans to add to our family, I have found that we can turn to the experts at Petcurean and learn more on why adopting a pet can make all the difference for everyone!

See in our home, we have our kids and our fur babies, who all get along and have grown together. The thing is, when it comes to our dogs, Chloe is our only dog, and with her being a elderly dog, we have found that she is not as enthusiastic to go out and play, chase a ball, or run around with the kids as she once was. So after months of the kids begging, and going around to the various rescues and shelters in our area, we decided to bring the decision to a family discussion and talk about the responsibilities that are included when it comes to adopting a new pet.


Naturally the kids have been ecstatic, and have taken on more responsibilities to prove that they will be more than willing to help with a new dog. We have all also agreed that in the next couple of months, leading up to the summer break, that we will begin heading to the shelters and rescues on a weekly basis, until we find that one puppy or dog that we all feel is the one for us. This is something we had done years ago when my husband and I adopted Chloe from a rescue and just like before, we want to take our time to find that one dog or even puppy that we all feel is the right one! And as we head out to the shelters and rescues, we will be keeping in mind, the amazing tips we found on the Petcurean site from the article that includes 8 great reasons on why adopting a dog is a wonderful thing to do.

These reasons to adopt include the fact that when we adopt, we are saving a life, and providing a safe and secure environment to a dog who really needs it along with so many other great reasons that you can find when you go here: http://www.petcurean.com/blog/8-reasons-why-adopting-a-dog-is-a-wonderful-thing-to-do/ Which not only gives us an amazing list of info on adopting when we head to the Petcurean site, but also allows us to find the right dog food to give our new dog or puppy once we have found the new member to add to our family. Making Petcurean a great resource for information on both the foods they carry and on caring for our pets!





Updated and Fashionable Children’s Swimwear


Parents are very fond of their children and always like to offer them the best things in life. They buy different costumes for their kids for special occasions and even for regular days. Mothers are found conquering the swimsuit stores during summer for getting the best children’s swimwear for their kids. They spend several hours looking for the perfect swimsuit. Swimsuits specifically meant for children are available in different styles, colours and shapes. There are one-piece and two-piece bathing suits for the little girls while the little boys can wear little trucks printed in various themes and colours. These days, there are a number of stores that offer different varieties of swimsuits for children. Swimsuits like board shorts, wetsuits and thermal wears are commonly available throughout the market making it easy for children to enjoy the waters.
Factors to Consider When Buying Children’s Swimwear
Children’s swimwear is basically a mini version of the swimsuits available for adults. However, there is a slight difference in the design and the prints. This might give you the idea that making the choice of the beat beach wear for your child might be a very difficult thing to do. While it can be a little daunting to find the perfect swimming trunk or bathing suit for your child, it can obviously be done by putting in some time and effort in searching the market. There are a number of factors that you need to consider when choosing swimwear for your child and the factors have been enumerated below:
Remember the Sun is the Greatest Enemy
Prior to making up your mind to visit the beach along with your child, one important thing that you need to understand is that the sun serves as the greatest enemy for your skin and even for the soft skin of your child. Undoubtedly, sunshine is healthy because it is the best source of vitamin D but the rays of the sun in the afternoon or at noontime might turn out to be very dangerous especially for your kid’s skin. Therefore, it is essential that you keep your kid’s skin well protected when you visit the beach. You can do this by making the choice of the best children’s swimwear that possesses the potential of covering the child’s skin as much as possible.
Comfort is an Important Factor
The second most important factor that you need to consider when choosing kid’s swimwear is comfort. It is necessary for you to make the choice of a swimwear that has been specifically designed for keeping your kid protected from the sun and even safe while swimming. At the same time, it is also crucial that you look for a swimwear that is an absolute comfort for your child. You must choose swimwear that perfectly fits the body shape of your child and allows your child to move about freely. Your child must feel comfortable and should easily be able to enjoy at the beach.
Safety is Also an Important Priority
In order to keep your child safe at the beach you need to make the choice of a very well-designed swimsuit. Go for swimsuits that come with floated foam insertions making them buoyant.

There are a number of other factors that you also need to consider when choosing swimwear for your child. However, the ones mentioned above should top your priority list.

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Easter Fun Found at Oriental Trading


As we prepare to say goodbye to the month of March and hello to the month of April, we not only prepare for the nicer days ahead but we also find that it is time to start getting everything ready for Easter! Like many with little ones in the home, I not only enjoy seeking out those must have Easter gifts and outfits for the kids, but also the fun items as well such as the Easter eggs to put out for the hunt and Easter themed crafts as well. And when it comes to getting those crafts and Easter eggs together for the kids, I like that I can head to Oriental Trading, where I can find the eggs, fillers, crafts and so much more all in one place!


When I go online to shop the line up of seasonal crafts at Oriental Trading, I like that with the Easter themed crafts, that they are not only great to have out for the kids to do for Easter but also a great choice to go with to bring some fun spring time themed crafts into the home. We found the Color Your Own Easter Baskets to be a fun craft project for the kids and their friends to do. These baskets are simple to color and put together, then the kids can display them in the home with spring themed goods and when the time comes to go Easter Egg hunting, they can use their baskets to put the eggs in! Along with the baskets we also found the Easter Character Pop Up Craft Kits to be another fun craft that the kids could not only make but also play with as well.

Then when it comes to the eggs and the plastic eggs with fillers that we will be using this year during the big Easter egg hunt, we found the selection of plastic eggs and fillers to be exactly what we were looking for! We were able to not only get the prefilled eggs that come with stickers, pencils and other stationary items with the Stationary Filled Jumbo Eggs, but we also found the empty eggs as well. With the Jumbo Bright Easter Eggs, we will be able to fill them with the various candies like the Jelly Belly Mini Packs, the Jelly Belly Organic Fruit Snacks, the Reese's Easter Eggs Chocolate Candies, and the Hershey's All Time Great's Chocolate Candies! And for the dying of the Easter eggs, we can use the plastic Easter Egg Cups to put the dye in, allowing us to have a variety of egg dyes out as we decorate eggs this year. Making the choice to head to Oriental Trading this Easter one that is sure to make your Easter a lot of fun!





Product received, thank you to Oriental Trading as well as the PR for supplying me with a product for this review, all opinions are my own.

Monday, March 27, 2017

#Giveaway NuForce Wireless Sport Headphones



When it comes to heading out for a walk or run, or even as we run errands, like many, I like to have my phone and music nearby. I also like to have headphones that do not get tangled or cause any issues like pulling when I am out and about. And with the iPhone 7 I find that finding those Bluetooth headphones is a great option to use with my phone. So when I was sent the NuForce Wireless Sport Headphones in Rose Gold to review, I was excited to check them out!


First off, I must say that with the Rose Gold option in the colors, I like that I can get a set of wireless headphones that match my iPhone 7 and case. From there I found that the design of these headphones is a great one, allowing me to move about without having to worry about any chords getting in the way, being pulled, or the earbuds falling out. The ear pieces are made to fit into the ear, and not just the opening but also fit into the cartilage so that even when I am running, working out, or just running daily errands, I do not have to worry about the ear pieces coming out. And with the fit, I like that I do not have any issues with stability and I like that I can get noise isolation. The ear tips and ear wings are interchangeable as well, allowing me to have various size and even color options to choose from.


Then when it comes to the use, I like that I can get up to 10 hours of battery life after each charge, and with this I get non stop listening while I am on the go and that there is a built in mic so that I can also use my phone as needed as well. I also can appreciate that when it comes to working out and such, that even when I am out sweating, kicking up dust or even when I am caught in the rain, that these headphones are sweat, water, and dust resistant! Making the NuForce Wireless Sport Headphones a must have for not only those with a iPhone 7 but also for those who seek out a wireless Bluetooth option when it comes to headphones. And to help with that search for the perfect wireless headphones, the wonderful people from Optoma USA would like to give one of my readers their own pair of the NuForce Wireless Sport Headphones!




Product received, thank you to Optoma USA as well as the PR for supplying me with a product for this review, all opinions are my own.

Must Haves for Baby with MAM Baby


When it comes to finding those must have products to stock up on when you have a new baby in the home, I find that I like to go for the products that I have used and adored in the past. And one line up of products that my own babies have used and enjoyed having are the products from MAM Baby. So when we were sent a selection of the MAM Baby products to review, I was excited to see what Heather and little Zoey thought of the products and also share her review with our readers!


When you have little ones, it seems like we are constantly misplacing or even losing their pacifiers, and having the MAM Pacifier Clips to go on the MAM Pacifiers is a great way to keep from losing them. With the MAM Pacifier Clips and MAM Pacifiers, you get so many cute designs to choose from and the clips are also easy to use. I also liked that when Zoey was given the MAM Pacifiers, she instantly took to them. The small shield with nose cut out fit her perfectly and the nipple will adapt to her mouth and make sure it is placed correctly for her to suck on. It is lightweight and easy for her to use, which makes this is a must have for any parent. 

Along with the pacifiers and clips, we were also able to check out the MAM Anti-Colic Bottle, which gives us a bottle that is made to reduce colic by 80%. It is self sterilizing in the microwave and has a base that vents the air out for less gas. The nipple is soft and similar to the pacifier so it is easy for my baby to use. Then with the MAM Pacifier Wipes, I like that they are a quick and convenient way to wipe down a dropped pacifier, bottle, tether, or even a toy. They are made with no harsh chemicals and are non toxic, and they are great especially on the go when your little one drops their pacifier on the ground and you have no convenient place to wash it off.  Just wipe it and it is ready to use! Which in all makes using the MAM line of products a very convenient choice for both baby and parents.


Products received, thank you to MAM as well as the PR for supplying me with the products for this review, all opinions are my own.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Around the World with Peppa

When it comes to those shows that we enjoy tuning into with our little ones, we find that in my home, Peppa Pig is a family favorite. So naturally, when we hear about new episodes airing, we not only enjoy tuning in but we also enjoy sharing the news with others. And when it comes to the new shows airing, you and your little ones can tune in for a brand-new Peppa Pig episode, “Around the World with Peppa,” when it premiers on Nick Jr. channel, Sunday, March 26, at 7pm ET/PT!


In “Around the World with Peppa,” Peppa and her family set off to the park to celebrate the start of the summer holiday. But when their car breaks down, Miss Rabbit lends them her plane for the day and they get swept off on a high-flying adventure all around the world! Also, as you prepare for the premiere be sure to head to: http://www.peppapig.com/grown-ups/around-the-world so you can download some great Peppa Pig themed activities that you can print off for you and your little ones to enjoy.



#Giveaway Viéra Himalayan Salt Lamp from Levoit


When it comes to the home and the environment within the home, I find that I like to seek out products that can help with not only adding various decor items to the different rooms but also the products that can help with mine and my families overall health. And like many, I have found that the various Himalayan Salt Lamps from Levoit can do just that. So when we were sent the new Viéra Himalayan Salt Lamp to review from the line up of lamps at Levoit, I was excited to check it out and add it to my family room!

Unlike other salt lamps that you might come across, the ones from the Levoit line up are a bit different, and with the Viéra Himalayan Salt Lamp, you get a very decorative and effective salt lamp that can add to any space both in the home and office. The lamp is delivered in a decorative box, which is great if you are looking to send a gift to someone. Once opened up, you find the supplies needed so that you can easily put together a very nice and attractive salt lamp for all to see. The contents include the Aluminum alloy base, a Borosilicate glass vase, the 100% natural, hand-mined Himalayan salt crystals, bulbs needed as well as backup bulbs, and the touch control switch which is attached to the base that allows you to get dimmable lighting.


Then once you have your Viéra Himalayan Salt Lamp, you can not only see for yourself as the glow from the salt crystals bring a very calming effect to the room, but you and your family can also begin to feel the benefits of ionization that a salt lamp can bring. These benefits include improved energy levels, improved breathing, reduced allergies, reduced stress, improved sleep and a product that is a natural air purifier! Which in all, not only makes the Viéra Himalayan Salt Lamp stand out from the look alone, but also makes it a great decorative yet healing item to have in any home or even work space! And to help with bringing the benefits of ionization from a salt lamp that also makes for a great decorative piece in any space, the wonderful people from Levoit would like to give one of my amazing readers their own Viéra Himalayan Salt Lamp!







Product received, thank you to Levoit as well as the PR for supplying me with the product for this review, all opinions are my own.

Spring Designs from The Honest Company


As the birds chirp, the flowers begin to bloom and the weather gets nicer out, we realize that Spring is finally here! With that I find that I like to seek out the products for both the home and my family that offer those spring designs on them. So when we were sent some packs of the Honest Diapers with the new spring designs on them from The Honest Company to review, I was excited to see what Heather thought of them and have her share her review with our readers! You can read Heather's review below!


The new prints on the Honest Diapers are so cute and comfy for my little lady and give us lots of different prints to chose from. The little bunnies are perfect for spring and Easter, and with that I like that they make special prints for every season. These are designed to be hypoallergenic and free of additives and are chlorine free. They are Eco-friendly and made from plant based sustainable resources. 


Then when it comes to the fit, the leg cuffs hug babies legs to prevent leaks and blowouts. Soft stretchable tabs are easy to adjust on a wiggling baby and the inner and outer layers are super soft and gentle on babies skin. These are made of high quality materials and I feel safe knowing my baby girl will not be near harsh chemicals which often lead to terrible rashes. I would recommend these to any parent. Making the Honest Diapers along with the adorable new prints a great choice to go with as you stock up for the spring looks for baby! And in honor of the new prints, first-time subscribers will get $20 off their first bundle (reg. $79.95) which includes a monthly supply of diapers and wipes delivered directly to their door. Customers can also purchase individual diaper packages ($13.95) of the new prints on Honest.com.




Product received, thank you to Honest Diapers as well as the PR for supplying me with the product for this review, all opinions are my own.

Remodel and Save with the LG Remodeling Sales Event at Best Buy

The reviewer has been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or received the product/service at a reduced price or for free


As the weather starts to warm up and those spring cleaning plans go underway, aside from the organizing of the home, many of us find that now is also the ideal time to get some of those remodeling projects underway. Like many, when it comes to the organizing and the remodeling, I like to head out and also replace some of the older appliances in the home as well. So when I heard about the LG Remodeling Sales Event going on right now at Best Buy, I was excited to head to my local Best Buy and begin checking off my list of what all I need to update in my home.


With the LG Remodeling Sales Event at Best Buy, you can save up to 30% off on the major appliances from the line up of LG appliances you need for your home! Along with the savings that start at 5% off and go on up to 30% off, you can also get a free $100 Best Buy Gift Card when you purchase any 2 major appliances that total over $1500 between now and April 12th. You can learn more about this deal by clicking here.


Then when it comes to saving even more on those LG purchases, you can get up to $400 back via mail on select LG kitchen packages now through May 3rd! (Find out more about how you can get this offer here.) Which when you look at the savings that you can get, you find that you can get those must have LG appliances like the LG InstaView™ Door-in-Door®. With this amazing refrigerator you get the large capacity 24 cu ft that allows you and your family to have the room you might need for your food! The InstaView door has a glass panel that can illuminate when you knock on the glass twice, which allows you to see what is in the refrigerator without having to open it and let the cool air out. And with the LG black stainless steel line up of appliances for the home, you can get the updates that give your home a warm and sophisticated look to it. Making the LG Remodeling Event going on right now at Best Buy, a sale that you are not going to want to miss.








Only 17 States Require Financial Literacy Classes in High School – Here is How to Teach Your Children About Finances

David Chen is the founder of Millennial Personal Finance

Ironically, as reliance on student loans to finance higher education continues to rise, students are not learning financial literacy as part of their primary or secondary school education. If you live in one of over thirty states where financial literacy classes are not part of the curriculum, it’s up to parents to ensure that their high school-aged children are graduating to adulthood with a basic understanding of paying bills, balancing a checking account, and managing debt. The ability to build good credit is increasingly integral to a modern day life, and many adults in their 20s end up mired in debt that they can’t afford. Eventually, their credit scores show the damage, which results in higher interest rates and a debt cycle that is tough to get out of. This situation could have been easily prevented by a few hours of money management education. If you aren’t sure how to approach money discussions with your children, here are some topics and approaches that will help you get started, whether your children are in elementary school or high school.

Explain What Money Is
            Although this discussion isn’t necessary for older kids, if you’re starting financial literacy with young children it helps to explain exactly what money is and what it does. You might start with an explanation of bartering, and why societies evolved from a tit-for-tat trade economy into a cash economy, and eventually, credit. This can be a fun introduction, as you have them imagine what life would be like if we still used a barter system. Have them think of something they want but haven’t gotten yet, such as a new toy, and what they have already that they would be willing to trade for it. You might have them imagine how hard it would be if parents had to take items with them to the grocery store in order to trade for groceries, instead of using cash or a card to pay for items.

Create Budgets
            A great way to introduce kids of all ages to financial literacy is to help them create a budget. This works especially well if your kids get an allowance or are paid for chores, but even if they aren’t, you can create a micro-economy for your household by substituting something else for real money, such as tokens or beads. Younger ones may have a harder time with the concept of saving, but older children in middle and high school can benefit from creating and maintaining real budgets with concrete goals. Younger kids can use coins or money substitutes to learn about earning and spending. Don’t forget to establish how much money substitutes are worth when it’s time to “spend” from the budget. For instance, five beads might be worth one lollipop. When working with older children, help them to articulate short-term and long-term budget goals, such as “I want to save $20 by next month to go to the movies” or “My goal is to save $500 by summer to go on a trip.” It’s easier and more satisfying to watch saved money grow when there’s a definite purpose to saving.

Pay Your Children
            Many parents don’t provide an allowance or pay their children for doing chores, instead preferring to encourage housework participation as a family expectation. And while there’s nothing wrong with this (and every child should be expected to help out around the house as a member of the family) there are a lot of side benefits to establishing a payment system for chores. It impresses upon them that good things in life come from hard work, teaches them responsibility at a young age, and will introduce them early on to the idea of earning specific money for specific work. Consider making some chores a family expectation and others an optional amount of work that can be done for specific pay. You might go about this by setting a weekly amount of chores for a specific allowance, or by creating a “chore list” or “chore board” that children can check that tells them which tasks are available and how much they can earn for completing them. Most parents find that this works equally well with younger children as with older ones.

Discuss Money Openly
            It wasn’t that long ago that discussing family finances at the dinner table, or anywhere within children’s hearing, was considered crude. These days, we know that children benefit from hearing their parents have frank discussions about money management, and even from participating in these discussions themselves. Excellent opportunities to discuss money openly, and engage your children in the discussion, include planning vacations, choosing service providers such as for cell phone and cable, and planning grocery trips. Even when the financial discussions are more serious, children benefit from seeing and hearing how their parents compromise and make decisions on difficult money matters.

Don’t Forget About Debt
            Teachingyour children about debt is increasingly important as they get closer to adulthood and will be faced with credit card offers, car payments, and student loans. But, the debt conversation can begin as young as you are comfortable with, by explaining how and why debt exists. Cover both the pros and cons of borrowing money. For instance, borrowing money allows parents to purchase a house without waiting and saving for thirty years, but in exchange more money has to be paid over time. As much as possible, pepper your conversations with real examples from your life and the lives of your children.



Wednesday, March 22, 2017

#Giveaway Store Brand Formula’s Share Your Formula Sweepstakes + $25 Visa Gift Card

This post is sponsored and written by me on behalf of Store Brand Formula through a campaign managed by their PR. All opinions are my own.


When it comes to parenting in today's world where we incorporate a lot of the technology available to us, we find that we like to make things a little fun by using things such as the memes and emojis when we text others. I know that in my home this is a way to express ourselves when we just can not find the words to say what we need to say after a long day, and it is also a fun way of communicating as well. Well when we have kids and even a new baby in the home, we find that those emojis can get pretty entertaining, especially after a long day of caring for the family. So when I was told about the Share Your Formula Sweepstakes where you can express your parenting style with emojis and be entered to win $1000 along with a years supply of infant formula from Store Brand Formula, I was excited to check it out and share!

See with this fun sweepstakes, parents can enter by sharing their own parenting formula using the emoji board that is on the form. This allows you as parents, to express your daily parenting formula on how you get through it and make it fun! Each week one person will be picked to win the $1000 along with a 1 year supply, or 52 cans, of Store Brand Formula! Giving parents greater odds of winning and also giving parents a great prize just for sharing those fun parenting formulas that you can create using emoji's!  Then after you have submitted, be sure to stock up on the Store Brand Formula for your baby, where you can get the formula you need for up to 50% less than other brands! Which allows you as a parent to save money on a product that is a much needed one when you have a baby and making this contest along with the Store Brand Formula, one that you are not going to want to pass up! The Store Brand Formula's Share Your Formula Sweepstakes is running now through April 24, 2017, and to help with stocking up on some of that Store Brand Formula, the wonderful people from Store Brand Formula would like to give one of my amazing readers a $25 Visa Gift Card!




BOGO Power Rangers Movie Tickets

This post was sponsored by Atom Tickets. All opinions are my own.


When it comes to finding things to do on date night or to do over the weekend with the family, I find that going to watch some of the newest movies in the theaters is the way to go. We enjoy seeking out the latest and greatest must see movies, and like so many who grew up in the 90's, we have found that the Power Rangers are a instant favorite in our house. From the various shows that are both from the old and newer series to the toys and collectibles, we have found that aside from my husband and I enjoying the show when we were kids, that our own kids enjoy the show as well. So like many fans, when we first saw those epic previews for the new movie, Power Rangers, we began counting down the days so we can make it a family movie night at the theaters. And when we heard that right now when we purchase our tickets to go and see the new movie, Power Rangers using our Atom Tickets App, that we can use the BOGO promotion they have going right now, I was excited to get our tickets purchased as well as share this amazing deal with others!


See right now through March 26th, when you go to use the Atom Tickets App or head to AtomTickets.com to purchase tickets to see the new movie, Power Rangers which comes out March 24th, you can get two tickets for the price of one using the code: RANGERSBOGO at checkout! This allows you to secure your seats at the theater ahead of time, and also get your ticket then a free one for a friend to use when you use the code. The code is limited to one use per customer and is only available for a limited time, making this a opportunity that is just too good to pass up, and one that will make this weekend movie one that you can enjoy and also share with others! So be sure to mark your calendar for this weekend, get your tickets from Atom Tickets for yourself and a friend using the bogo code: RANGERSBOGO, and enjoy watching the new movie, Power Rangers!






Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Keep Mouths Healthy and Happy with Oral SteriClean®

When it comes to our families and the products we use everyday in the home, we find that we want to ensure that the products are safe and effective. This is especially important when it comes to the toothbrushes our families use everyday for oral care. The thing is, when it comes to the toothbrushes, regardless of which one we go with, they can get dirty and straight up unsanitary pretty quickly. So when we were sent the UV Toothbrush Sanitziers to review from Oral SteriClean, I was curious to learn more about the products and also begin using them in my home.
With the UV Toothbrush Sanitizers, we get a FDA listed medical device that is proven to safely kill germs and even fight against serious diseases that can be found on our toothbrushes both in the home and when we go on vacation! The harmful germs are more than just those that can cause the common cold, but also the germs and bacteria which can be found deep within the bristles of our toothbrushes.



The UV Toothbrush Sanitizers are simple to set up and use as a everyday holder for the toothbrushes we use in my home, and with the travel case, we can continue to keep our toothbrushes sanitized even when we are not at home, Then when it comes to destroying the germs and bacteria, the UV lights do so at a cellular level which destroys the DNA of those harmful agents, making it so that those virus cells are unable to survive and die. Which in all makes the UV Toothbrush Sanitizers from Oral SteriClean a great choice to go with in any home and add to your list of must have travel products for you and your family when it comes to keeping mouths healthy and happy!



Product received, thank you to Oral SteriClean as well as the PR for supplying me with a product for this review, all opinions are my own.

Monday, March 20, 2017

#Giveaway Co-Sleeping Essential with the Snuggle Me Organic

When a new baby is in the home, as parents, we find that getting into the routine of things can be a job all in its own, especially when you have other kids in the home. And when we bring a new baby home, we seek the products that can help us get into a routine. Like many parents including myself, Heather and her husband enjoy co-sleeping with their babies. It helps with the bonding, the night time feedings, and also gives them a sense of security knowing that little Zoey is safe and sound by their sides. So when we were sent the Snuggle Me Organic to review, I was excited to see what Heather thought of it and share her thoughts with our readers! You can read Heather's review below.


If you are looking for a secure and comfortable place to lay baby while they sleep, this is your answer. The moment we put my daughter in it, she loved it. The sides snuggle her and make her feel safe and secure. It is nice not having any buckles or straps she could get caught up in. Giving her a great sleeper that is both comfortable and soothing.

  • Exclusive Center-Sling technology to securely hold baby
  • Fits perfectly in bed with mom and dad
  • Portable, move around the house & take it with you on holidays
  • Used & Recommended by Birth Professionals
  • Used & Recommended by Pediatric Chiropractors
  • Used & Recommended by Infant Massage Therapists
  • Recreates the womb
  • Snuggles baby as though they are being held
  • Soothes the Moro reflex
  • Organic
  • Free of dangerous chemicals
  • Closed system to keep baby in their safe sleep position
  • No belts or buckles to trap babies legs or arms
  • Newborn through 6 months
  • Custom Grand available; 6 months through 15 months
  • Family friendly price points
  • Handcrafted
  • All components used are USA sourced

With the material, it is organic and chemical free which gives me peace of mind that it doesn't put off any bad odors. The sling type design for the center lets you control the firmness by what type of surface you place it on.  It is portable and would be great for trips or to a sitters house and is great for co-sleeping too! She stays safe right by my side and I can easily get to her in the middle of the night.  I would recommend this to any new mom whether it be her first or tenth baby. Which in all, makes the Snuggle Me Organic a great item to have in any home when it comes to baby and also a great item to have when you are co-sleeping with baby. And to help with getting into the sleep routines in your home, the wonderful people from Snuggle Me Organic would like to give one of our amazing readers their own Snuggle Me Organic Natural Lounger!









Product received, thank you to Snuggle Me Organic as well as the PR for supplying me with a product for this review, all opinions are my own.

#Giveaway Travel Essentials for Baby from b.box

As we prepare for those spring and summer breaks and even the warmer weather where we find ourselves spending more time outdoors, we tend to seek out the items that can help make traveling with the kids a little easier. This is especially true when traveling with a baby, regardless of the distance you will be traveling. Of those items, I find that seeking out the essentials like a diaper case and feeding products to be a must have. So when we were sent the Diaper Wallet and Travel Bib from b.box to review, I knew that Heather would be excited to check them out and share her review on the products with our readers! You can read Heather's review below.



With the b.box Diaper Wallet, I find that it is going to be very handy for the fast trips to the store or to an appointment. This is much more convenient than having to carry a diaper bag for a short trip. The hard case will keep anything from being squished, and is a great size that is ideal for grabbing when needed as we are on the go. The wipes can be accessed from the front for a messy face or from the inside for a messy bottom. The changing pad is easily stored inside with 2 diapers and is easy to wipe down. Giving me a stylish yet convenient product that will be my go to item for a quick trip out, and is a great product to take when traveling.  

Along with the Travel Wallet, I also received the matching Travel Bib. This will be handy when my baby gets to eat solid foods. The bib and spoon are easy to store in the attached pouch, and the pouch will catch food that the little one drops. Along with the design I like that there is a loop to be able to hang the pouch for storage. Then when it needs to be cleaned, just rinse and clean, air dry, and you are ready for the next feeding. Making the feedings and even diaper changes when on the go a little easier for everyone when we bring our b.box Diaper Wallet and Travel Bib along. And to help when it comes to your own travel plans, the wonderful people from b.box would like to send one of our amazing readers their own b.box Travel Bib!



Product received, thank you to b.box as well as the PR for supplying me with a product for this review, all opinions are my own.

Organic Clothing for Baby from SoftBaby

When it comes to finding those adorable and comfortable outfits for baby, we find that the options can be endless. The thing is, when it comes to baby, whether it be the gear or the clothing they wear, we as parents want to ensure that we only use the items that are safe not only where gear is concerned but also where babies skin is concerned. So when we were introduced to the organic clothing line up from SoftBaby, we were excited to check out the clothing and see how little Zoey liked it. You can read Heather's review on the very adorable Milk outfit that she was sent for Zoey below.


I received the "Milk" outfit and it is so cute on my baby girl. The onesie and diaper cover are going to be perfect for a warm spring day. It is made from 100% organic cotton and is super soft against her newborn skin. Being organic also means that babies sensitive skin won't be irritated since it is hypoallergenic. There is a variety of different patterns and sizes. I am sure you will find one you will fall in love with and just have to have for your little one. Making the organic clothing line up for baby from SoftBaby a great choice to go with as you seek the clothes for your little ones!



Product received, thank you to Soft Baby Clothes as well as the PR for supplying me with the products for this review, all opinions are my own.

Enjoy Cold Drinks in the Magnificent Moscow Mule Copper Mugs

When it comes to entertaining or even the days where you want to relax and enjoy the time, I find that having the right drinking cups can make all the difference. From having that right coffee mug that you look for every morning to drink your coffee in to having the right cups to use when you are hosting guests or even when you want the right cup to use when relaxing, I personally enjoy having the cups that can make all the difference depending on what I am looking to drink. So when we were sent the Magnificent Moscow Mule Copper Mugs to review, I was excited to check them out along with the recipe book that is included!


One of the things that stood out most for me was the look. I love the look of the copper and the hammered out metal of the mugs. Being from Southwestern New Mexico, I grew up with copper being a part of everything. From the copper jewelry and kitchenware to the fact that just about everyone in the town I grew up in was a part of the copper mining industry, copper has always been a metal that I have admired. And when I opened the box with the Moscow Mule Copper Mugs that came with the copper straws, I was brought back to remembering my home town where copper was part of the town motto!

After looking over the mugs and even looking at the various recipes that came with the mugs, I decided to give them a try. I found that I was impressed with the fact that after I poured a iced drink in the mugs, and leaving it for about 1 hour, that the drink was still ice cold and the ice was still there. I also found that the straws also made the drinking experience that much better. I liked the design of the mugs, where they are stable and have a large indented base allowing them to not wobble and with the handles, I can easily hold my mugs while drinking. Which in all, makes the Magnificent Moscow Mule Copper Mugs from Goody Goods a great choice to go with when you are looking for a set of mugs that are sure to stand out from the rest!






Product received, thank you to Goody Goods as well as the PR for supplying me with a product for this review, all opinions are my own.