Sunday, April 30, 2017

#Giveaway Ovation Brands Nancy Drew Prize Pack

When it comes to those busy nights during the week where everyone has a lot going on from practice to after school activities, I find that taking the family out for dinner is the way to go. Like many who head out to eat on those busy weeknights, I like to head to places like The Old Country Buffet, where we can not only get something for everyone but where we can also enjoy family night during the Ovation Brands Family Nights on Thursday nights from 5-8pm. So when we were told about the Nancy Drew: Codes & Clues Family Nights going on right now, on Thursday nights through May 25th from 5-8pm at any one of the Ovation Brands or Furrs Buffet locations, I was excited to learn more and take my family for a fun night out!

Every Thursday evening from 5-8 through May 25th when you take your family to eat at your local Ovation Brands or Furrs Buffet restaurants you can join in on the Nancy Drew Codes & Clues fun which includes fun STEAM education and gives the kids a chance to participate in activities that include mystery, science and more! The line up for the Nancy Drew Codes & Clues includes:
  • May 4 – A-MAZE-ING Detective!
  • May 11 – Invisible Ink & Ultimate Nancy Drew Journal Giveaway!
  • May 18 – Family Mystery!
  • May 25 – Code it with Robot Puppy!
Which makes dinning out with the family fun and enjoyable for everyone when you head to a Ovation Brands or Furrs Buffet restaurant location! 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 prize pack that includes one Ultimate Nancy Drew Fan Journal featuring stunning artwork from the fans’ favorite Nancy Drew games 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.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Kids Astronaut Helmet with Sound from Aeromax Toys

In my home, playtime seems to be just about all of the time, especially when it comes to my preschooler. I find that watching little imaginations is something that amazes me, and as my preschooler and his friends go about playing together, they enjoy not only the toys to play with but also the dress up items when they engage in role play. And like many parents with little ones whose imaginations love to run wild, I like seeking out the products to support those imaginations from come from companies like Aeromax Toys, where we can find those dress up items that can take kids to infinity and beyond! So when we were sent the Kids Astronaut Helmet with Sound from Aeromax Toys to review, I was excited to share it with my little guy and watch as he prepared for takeoff on his next fun journey!

With this fun astronaut helmet, Wyatt can pretend that he is getting ready for a mission into outer space with a helmet that not only looks real but that offers fun features as well. These features include a visor that goes up and down when he presses the buttons on the side, along with built in sounds and a mike that make him feel like he is talking to mission control! Then aside from the working features that this helmet offers, Wyatt likes that the tubing on the side along with the NASA logo help to make this helmet even more realistic looking as he engages in astronaut play! Making the choice to add the Astronaut Helmet with Sound from Aeromax Toys one that you and your kids are sure to appreciate and one that is sure to help take that imaginative play to the next level!

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

Hurdle the Robot from The Young Scientists Club

When it comes to finding the toys to keep my kids engaged with that are both fun and educational, I find that seeking out those toys that are geared towards STEM and robotics. For this, I like to turn towards the companies that we have enjoyed in the past and one such company is The Young Scientists Club. So when we were sent the robotic kit, Hurdle the Robot to review, I was excited to share it with my kids!

With this kit, I found that it would be perfect for my third grader who enjoys everything that comes with STEM learning! I say that because with this fun kit, my son and his friends can build a real working robot that helps to introduce them to the basics of robotics with a fun toy.

The kit comes with the motor and gears, the computer module along with a very detailed instruction manual that allows my son to get the step by step instructions needed so that he and his friends can put together their Hurdle the Robot correctly. Then once Hurdle is put together, they can then watch as their robot moves around and play with it! Making Hurdle the Robot along with the other robotics kits from The Young Scientists Club a great choice to get the kids when it comes to finding those STEM toys that encourage robotic learning and fun!

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

14 Things to Do Prior to Going to Online Dating Sites

Whether you want to find someone compatible within your nearby area, have a hookup, or try international dating and marry a Russian girl, there are some essential rules to consider.

1. Determine your goal. To use all the opportunities modern technologies provide, you should understand what you do it for. Are you looking for the love of your life or just someone to have fun with? Your final success depends on the strategy you work, so do it in advance.

2. Know your strong and weak points. New online daters often fail to present themselves to their prospective matches right. Note that excessive modesty can negatively impact your image. Share details about your significant qualities and capabilities!

3. Take a look at most successful online dating profiles. If you have doubts about how to create a compelling online dating profile, gain from the most popular users on your site – read their profiles in order to find out what makes them so attractive.

4. Upload pictures. No photo – no dating, just keep this in mind. Don’t have any good images of yourself? Take a photoshoot! Just remember your gallery should feature only recent and retouch-free photos to express your true essence.

5. How about your past? If you’ve been through any personal traumas, deal with those prior to starting your adventure. I don’t recommend you starting a new romantic search until you win over your post-breakup pain and complexes.

6. Throw all the masks away. If you really want to meet a good person to date, there is no need to pretend. Sincerity is among the traits people value most. Don’t struggle to become someone you aren’t – when the match of your dream goes on a live date with you, she/he wants to meet you, not your fake personality.

7. Consider you should be proactive. Men are still supposed to make the first move when it comes to wooing. But ladies are free to take the initiative as well. There are even specific online dating apps that offer users to play the leadership.

8. Search for a trustworthy resource. You don’t want to get scammed, do you? Unfortunately, no dating site guarantees you 100% safety from online fraudsters so this is what you need to take care on your own. Make sure your preferred app or site has the anti-scam system and learn the safety rules!

9. Mind your grammar and speech. Intelligent people are always desirable for those who seek relationships. Prove that you belong to this category! Check your profile before uploading it; avoid using txt-spelling and jargon.

10. Know who you need. It’s simple: you need to realize what qualities you’d like to meet in your future lover and what is unacceptable for you. The same goes for her/his life views and values too.

11. Lower your expectations. The fewer illusions you have about your entire love life, the better. Nobody is perfect, so don’t hunt for perfection! Learn to accept one’s flaws.

12. Prepare for unsuccessful dates. According to different studies, up to 75% of all in-person dates have disappointing outcomes. There is nothing astonishing about it, of course. Take it all as part of the game!

13. Be ready to communicate live. Text communication seems to be way safer than oral because you always have time to think out a perfect witty answer. On the other hand, it much more effective to talk to each other live to hear your match’s voice and see him/her like in reality.

14. Find the golden mean. You don’t need to chat to one and only person. For the beginning, at least, I suggest you choosing several candidates to get to know better. When you will be aware of who is who, you will easily narrow this circle down.


Friday, April 28, 2017

Mother's Day Gift Ideas: Personalized Pacifiers from MAM

When you have a new baby or even when you are seeking out those gifts to give a new parent, we find that having those essentials such as the diapers and pacifiers on hand it a must. We find that with babies, many of us not only like to have those essentials when it comes to caring for baby, but we also like to get those cute and awe worthy products as well. So when we were sent the Personalized Pacifiers for little Zoey from MAM, we were excited to check them out and let little Zoey start using them!

After Zoey was born, she was introduced to a few different types of pacifiers that her mom had tried with her, and after some trial and error with the selection, we found that Zoey preferred the pacifiers from the MAM line up. It is not hard to see why either, because with the MAM pacifiers, we get silicone, skin soft nipples that are made to be easily accepted by babies and also made to help promote oral health. The shield is also something that makes these pacifiers a favorite for both Zoey and her parents since it is designed with holes that help to prevent skin irritations. And with the variety of designs that we can choose from, Heather and her husband can be sure to have plenty on hand when caring for little Zoey.

Well aside from the adorable designs that are available, we found the Personalized Pacifiers from MAM to be a perfect addition to the MAM collection that Heather has already started! With the Personalized Pacifiers, you get the same designs and comfort that you get from the line up of pacifiers for babies 0-6 months, but instead of the designs you can choose from, you can personalize the pacifier for baby! We also like that with the 2 pack of pacifiers, they come in a handy carrying case that allows Heather and her husband to keep track of Zoey's pacifiers when they are not being used. Which in all makes the Personalized Pacifiers from MAM a great choice to get for baby or even give to the new moms on your list this Mother's Day!

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

Clean Your Home with Safe Non-Toxic Cleaning Products from Kids 'N' Pets

When it comes to keeping the home clean when you have kids and pets in the home, as a mom I find that I want to use the cleaning products that are safe and non-toxic. This goes for not only cleaning the counters and tables in my home, but also when it comes to cleaning up the pet stains. So when we were sent some of the cleaning products from Kids 'N' Pets to review, I was excited to try them and add them to my list of cleaning products to use in the home to help with cleaning up those everyday messes.

With the cleaning products from Kids 'N' Pets, I can get those messes and even stains and odors cleaned up safely and effectively without using any harsh chemicals that can be toxic for my family. In fact when it comes to the Kids 'N' Pets line and what they are made of, I like that they are formulated from environmentally friendly and biodegradable ingredients. The formula uses the power of Oxygen Activated dirt removing enzymes that not only help to remove dirt and pet stains but also helps to eliminate odors as well! Making the Kids 'N' Pets line up a selection of cleaning products that are both safe and effective and a great choice to go with when it comes to cleaning the home!

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

Ravensburg 3D Puzzle: Sneaker American Style

When it comes to finding things to do on our rainy PNW days with the kids, I find that I like to seek out the games and activities that can help to keep them engaged. Like many kids, mine enjoy putting together those fun puzzles that we come across, and like many older children, my teen really likes to find those fun 3D puzzles. So when we were sent the Sneaker: American Style 3D Puzzle from the collection at Ravensburg to review, we were excited to check it out and add it to our collection of rainy day games and puzzles!

With this 3D puzzle, my daughter can create a fun American Style Sneaker that is more than just a puzzle, but a piece that she can save and use for storing her pens and markers in on her desk. Or if she chooses to do so, she can take it back apart after putting it together and place the pieces back in the box to put together again and again. Making the American Style Sneaker 3D Puzzle from the collection at Ravensburg, a great choice to add to any puzzle lovers collection and also have on hand for those rainy days!

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

Peanuts by Schulz: Go Team Go! on DVD

Finding those fun family shows and movies that we can share on our family movie night is something that everyone in my home looks forward to. We enjoy sharing some of our favorites from the classics as well as the new ones that come out, and like many kids, I grew up with those comic strip kids on Saturday mornings when we would tune in to see Charlie Brown and his friends. So when we were sent the new DVD Peanuts by Schulz: Go Team Go! to review, my kids and I were excited to check it out!

In this DVD, we get a collection of sports themed cartoons with the 19 shorts that are based on that Sunday comic strip that we used to look forward to reading as kids. Giving myself and my husband some nostalgia over the collection and the kids a collection that they enjoyed watching and sharing during family movie night! You can bring home Peanuts by Schulz: Go Team Go! on DVD today for you and your family to enjoy as well!

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

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Bingo Through The Ages

We have come a long way from the days when bingo cards were marked using pebbles and pennies. Now the gambling industry has a large share of the market in bingo games, and the numbers are skyrocketing.

Remember the days when bingo was just the quiet Sunday game with friends for a small prize? Well, even though the social dynamics of the game have stayed true to the roots, the prizes and way of playing the game has completely changed. There is no longer a need to drive all the way up to the local bingo hall or to wait for the weekend bingo night. All you now have to do is to log in to your favorite bingo site and play the game anytime, anywhere!

If you want to chat with your friends while playing bingo just like the good ol’ days, all you have to do is ask them to play in the same virtual bingo room as you. And the best thing is that you can even choose a bingo game that fits your personality. The wide variety of bingo games available online is a giant step ahead in the industry and is attracting more and more players.

The bingo promotions and prizes are exceptionally fun now. There is something for all the members of the family! You can even host a bingo party in your house and have the guests log in to the same bingo room for added fun.

Though bingo has been around for ages, it has never been as accessible and easy as it is today. If you are new to this game or are still wondering whether you should play online, the only advise we can give you is to go for it. Happy playing! 

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Your First Vacation Together: Essential Tips

You’re in a new relationship and you’re looking forward to your first romantic trip. For many couples, their first trip turns into a real test. Even if you like traveling, every trip is stressful. If it’s your first experience of spending a vacation together, be ready for tons of surprises and revelations, both pleasant and not very pleasant ones. Especially, if you haven’t moved in yet but keep dating, stay over at each other’s places occasionally, and spend weekends together.

According to psychologists, a trip together is an important milestone in a couple’s relationship because stress and unusual situations unsettle people revealing some previously concealed traits. If your relationship has a potential to develop into a long-term one, your first trip will help you understand each other better and realize whether you’re compatible. Dating experts behind the site where men can meet Vava Girls recommend embarking on a trip already during your dating stage.

Before going on a trip, discuss some crucial points. There are some delicate matters that should be agreed beforehand.

Discuss your budget. Unfortunately, the financial part of a trip is often a deterrent. Estimate your budget and allocate some money for unforeseen expenses. It’s important to discuss your preferences – probably, you have different views on an ideal vacation. If you dream about a luxury hotel by the sea and your partner likes to hitchhike and sleep in tents, you may have a sort of disagreement.

Discuss how you’ll manage your budget. This is another important finance-related question to discuss in advance. If you don’t live together and don’t have a common budget, it’s better to make it clear who will pay for what during your vacation. In some couples, a man finances the whole trip while some partners decide to split the expenses. Find out what kind of couple you are.

Discuss potential stressful situations. Tell your partner about the things that usually worry you on the road. Here are some questions to ask each other to avoid misunderstanding.

-          If you need to hurry up, does it encourage you or make you nervous and oblivious?

-          Do you like to spend your vacation in a “lazy mode” or you get quickly bored and want to do something active?

-          Do you like to visit museums and go on excursions?

You should pay special attention to the question, “What would we do if..?” If an unpredictable situation occurs, it often causes a quarrel between partners. That is why you should think about possible troubles and how you’re going to react to them.

Things to Do and Avoid on a Trip
In order to make your joint vacation facilitate your relationship, you should follow simple rules.

Don’t be Siamese twins. For many couples, their first trip together turns into a trial just because they have to be together 24/7. Even if you already live under the same roof, you don’t spend so much time inseparably. On the one hand, living like a couple during your trip is a great training for your relationship. But on the other hand, the fact that you’re together on a trip doesn’t oblige you to spend every single minute with your partner. If you want to go to the beach and your partner wants to go on an excursion, don’t be afraid to spend some time apart following your interests. It will give you some time to start missing each other.

Make new friends. A common mistake of many couples is focusing on each other without noticing people around. Be open to others; make acquaintances among locals and other tourists, either individually or together. You can meet other couples and hang out together.

Use each other’s strong points and ignore weaknesses. There is something your partner is bad at and it becomes especially apparent during your vacation. Perhaps, your loved one doesn’t know a local language or drives awfully or feels shy to talk to the staff or lacks all sense of direction. It’s OK. You’re not an ideal person either. Just ignore all those minor flaws and focus on your partner’s merits. Probably, your partner bargains with local merchants like a pro and you can read maps easily. Use your talents and encourage each other. It will make your couple a team and create pleasant memories from your first trip together.


10 Unique Personalized Gifts To Last A Lifetime

Personalized Teddy
A teddy bear is one gift to offer to someone that you love. You can give your love as a gift on Valentines, and he/she will love it. A unique way of offering your gift would be stuffing it in a tin which has been personalized to bear the name of the recipient. Click here to view gifts to last that you can give to your loved ones.

Musical illuminated Ferris Wheel
A Ferris wheel can be used to show that you are romantic to someone. If you are having a romantic moment, you can ensure that you remember such moments in the future by giving your lover the Musical Ferris Wheel. It will always be one of the best gifts during the holiday.

Vineyard Wine Barrel Sign That Is Personalized
It is always a good thing to share a bottle of wine with people that you love such as members of your family, friends and even your lover. It shows a celebration having stayed together for many years. If you are okay to use wine with your loved ones, you can try wine barrel sign as an anniversary gift.

Personalized Bud Vase
If you are a couple and you are planning to have a moment that you can celebrate together, you can gift your loved one with a bud vase which will show that you value their love. Also, you can personalize the plaque with their name which will make it attractive and appealing.

Ying Yang Necklace Set
It is not easy to have a necklace that can suit both genders. However, ying yang is a dual accessory set that is manageable by both men and women. It can be personalized by use of fingerprints which stands for the love that you share.

Wooden Pen That Has Golden Accents
It is a unique and a modern gift that can be utilized during anniversaries. The wooden enclosure will be the best since it is a functional gift which you can give to your spouse. If your partner is someone who is religious, then the wooden pen will be the best gift because it displays a Corinthian quote.

Tree Anniversary Plate
It is a gift that is used for the purpose of decoration and also functional though is rear to find such a gift. If it is personalized, it will be the best gift to give to someone. It is a fantastic plate which looks beautiful when personalized.

Latte Framed Print
If you are the kind of couple who share a cup of coffee in the morning, then the other thing that you could need is the latte framed print. It is a print that features a coffee cup and personalized with your names.

Canoe Kayak
To avoid giving your loved one an annoying gift such as a clock, card, and jewelry, you can look for something that is adventurous. That would be a transparent canoe kayak. It is a portable gift that is easy to transport.

Try the gifts mentioned above, and you will be surprised by how your loved ones will be happy with such donations. If you are a couple, you will strengthen your love and stick together.


Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Playtime Fun with Yookidoo Gymotion Activity Playland

When it comes to baby gear and playtime, we find that those two things go together. I mean, when you have a baby in the home, you have a list of gear that you will need in place in order to ensure that you can care for baby properly, and with that we find that a lot of the playtime gear is on that list. Like many babies, mine have always had their playmats and gyms that I see as a must have when you have a baby. And like many parents, both the new ones and those who have been there a time or two, I find that when it comes to the gear such as the playmats and gyms, that they become more and more advanced offering parents and baby options that can help to make playtime a learning adventure for everyone! So when we were sent the Yookidoo Gymotion Activity Playland to review from Yookidoo, I was excited for Heather to share it with little Zoey, and also share her thoughts on this amazing gym that grows with baby with our readers! You can read Heather's review below.

Let me start out by saying this, there is no assembly required! That is a major plus in my book, because like many of us with babies know, most baby products have some sort of putting together and I was grateful this was ready to use out of the box. This play mat has a lot of activities to keep Zoey busy and entertained. Here are some of the features of this mat:

*         The 3-in-1 award winning patented activity gym.
*         Plush fantasy themed figures constantly ride back and forth on the motorized Yookidoo Magic Motion Track™ .
*         3 stages in 1 product: 1.Lay & Play 2. Tummy & Play 3. Sit & Play.
*         Yookidoo Magic Motion track™ easily attaches to padded arches (stage 1) or to mat for tummy time (stage 2).
*         More than 20 developmental activities!
*         Loads of accessories and multi textured toys: 3 fantasy themed plush figures, a large baby mirror for hanging on arch or standing on mat and a flower face rattle with beads.
*         4 modes of operation: rest, play, mute and off.
*         2 modes of 10 minute continuous music for relaxation or stimulation.
*         Easily Fold & Carry: Folds into self-contained carry case for storage or for travel.

And the developmental features are:

*         Stage 1: Lay & Play - improves both focus & depth perception, encourages side-to-side eye-tracking skills and promotes eye-hand coordination.
*         Stage 2: Tummy & Play - Promotes repeated head lifting, strengthens shoulders, chest and upper body. Promotes eye-hand coordination and develops gross motor skills.
*         Stage 3: Sit & Play - Teaches cause & effect, develops fine motor skills & encourages curiosity.

Right now we are in the lay and play stage and she loves to watch the little characters go back and forth on the magic track, and I really like that we can change them out when she starts to lose interest. This will be great to grow with her and watch her go through the different stages with this mat. This would be a great baby shower gift, giving the new and expecting parents a gift that requires no work other than taking it out of the box and laying it out! Which makes the Yookidoo Gymotion Activity Playland a baby gear product that I would recommend when you are looking for a mat that is sure to keep your little one entertained.

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

Gear Up for Summer with Thinkbaby & Thinksport

With the sun shinning and the outdoors calling, many of us find that we are spending more and more time outside enjoying the weather and sunshine. Like many with little ones, I like to ensure that when we are outside that they are covered so that we do not get any sun burns, this goes for myself as well. And like many with babies, when it comes to the products we use daily, especially the ones we use everyday while spending time outdoors, I want to make sure that the products are safe and non toxic. So when we were sent some of the sunscreen products from Thinkbaby and Thinksport to use for the family, I was excited for Heather to check them out and share her review with our readers. You can read Heather's review below.

The Thinkbaby sunscreen products are nothing short of amazing. Finally, products that live up to the hype, and making it so that I have complete confidence in these products. We find that so many other brands have misleading SPF ratings and the end result is a burn, not with these products. You can feel secure in knowing that SPF 50 means exactly that. We are a fair skinned family and we burn easily, and most sunscreen products leave our skin oily and they wear off fast, not these. We have the Thinksport for kids, Thinkbaby, and the Thinkbaby face and body stick. All of these are outstanding, leaps and bounds better than anything we have used in the past. They are nontoxic and mineral based, and I like that they are completely free of any harmful chemicals. There is a reason that this line of sunscreen has won more awards and other media attention than any other sun screen line. With the highest level of water resistance, UVA/UVB and SPF allowed by the FDA, you can feel comfortable knowing that you are not going to burn no matter how fair or sensitive your skin is. Which makes both the Thinkbaby and Thinksport sunscreens ones that we highly recommend.

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

Monday, April 24, 2017

New Family Member Introduction with Petcurean Plus this Years Global Pet Expo Trends

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

In my house, we have our kids along with our fur babies, and over the past few months we have been searching for a new fur baby to add to our family. Like many, we headed to our local shelters and rescues weekly, looking and waiting until we found that one dog or puppy that we all knew was the one we were looking for. Well, a few weeks ago while looking at some of the areas rescues, we came across some puppies, and there was one in the bunch who grabbed our attention. After a family discussion and finding that we were all in agreement, we went back to meet with this puppy again before making the decision to make this little puppy a part of our family. And once she was cleared by the vets and ready to go home, we were excited to pick up, and introduce Nakoma to our family! We also wanted to ensure that Nakoma gets the best start we can give her, so on our way to bring her home, we stopped and picked up a bag of the Now Fresh Puppy from Petcurean.

Knowing how much our senior dog Chloe enjoys the Now Fresh Senior, we were pretty confident that Nakoma would enjoy the Now Fresh Puppy, and we were right! She enjoys her grain free dog food, and also seems to be very happy now that she is an official member of our family! And just like with our other fur babies, we find that turning to the experts at Petcurean for the products that we can use in our home to keep our fur babies happy and healthy is the way to go. So when we heard about the latest trends from this years Global Pet Expo, we were excited to learn more about them and also share the news with our readers! You can read up on the Global Pet Expo Trends 2017 in the info provided by the people from Petcurean below, which you will see includes some of our fur babies favorite products.

Global Pet Expo Trends 2017:

  1. Limited Ingredient Diets: With the incidence of food sensitivities on the rise amongst dogs and cats, pet owners are looking for limited ingredient diets which can greatly reduce the chance of food sensitivity. GO! by Petcurean, is a complete, nutrient-packed food with zero added growth hormones, by-products, or artificial preservatives, offering a single source of meat protein with as few ingredients as possible to meet the nutritional requirements of dogs and cats. GO! is available in 3 solutions-based categories for dogs and cats with issues: Grain Free recipes, Limited Ingredient Diet recipes, and Preventative Care recipes.
  2. Pet Tech: If you aren’t familiar with the term “pet tech,” expect that to change. This year at Global Pet Expo there were a growing number of pet products that integrate technology in a variety of ways including activity trackers and video monitors and interactive toys. From the Flitter cat toy, which has an automatic teaser toy with two plastic dragonflies that fly around and around, enticing cats to catch them, to iFetch, an automatic ball launcher that provides endless fun for your pooch – interactive toys are a great option for pet owners on the go or with extra active pets.
  3. Transparency & Clean labels: As Millennials increasingly expect sustainability, transparency and organic ingredients in their food, more consumers seek to feed their pets with the same standards of quality and excellence that they choose for themselves. Expect to see an increase in products with fewer ingredients, less preservatives, and certifications in the years to come. Petcurean’s GATHER pet food line is crafted from certified, organic, non-GMO and sustainably produced ingredients. Each recipe is free from rendered or genetically engineered ingredients and features a single source, fresh and dehydrated primary protein.
  4. Pet Cooling Products: Now your pet can beat the heat! There were several pet cooling mats, apparel, and bedding products showcased this year, all designed to keep your pet cool during the hot summer months. Scruffs Cool Dog Mat is filled with a non-toxic gel that keeps the self-cooling mat typically 5-10 degrees cooler than room temperature.Gen7Pets Cool-Air Cot pet bed combines portable convenience, outdoor durability, and pet-friendly comfort perfect for camping or the backyard!

So if you are adding a new fur baby to your family or just seeking out the latest and greatest when it comes to the products for your pets, be sure to reference the list from the 2017 Global Pet Expo above and also be sure to have plenty of the products from Petcurean on hand!


Baby Trend EZ Ride5 Travel System

When it comes to a new baby, whether you are a first time parent or a seasoned parent, we find that the gear options are always changing. With that we find that with the new safety standards and options in features that are offered, that the search for the gear that is right for us can be somewhat overwhelming. Thankfully, for me and many other parents, I like to seek out the products from the brands we know and trust, and like many when it comes to some of that baby gear, Baby Trend not only has the gear we need but they also offer that gear in a variety of patterns that both parents and baby can appreciate. So when we were sent the Baby Trend EZ Ride5 Travel System in the Floral Garden pattern to review, I was excited to see what Heather thought of it and have her share her review with our readers! You can read her review below.

I was struggling to find a car seat that fit properly in my car for Zoey. When we received this car seat travel system I couldn't wait to use it. It fits perfectly in my car. I finally feel good knowing my little Zoey would be safe riding in the car. The car seat base is easy to install and the base has a foot to adjust the height to make it level in the car. The car seat latches easily into and out of the base, which when you need to place the seat in, you just set it in the base and it clicks in. No need to tip it in to latch it. And when it comes to taking the car seat in and out of the car, the handle on the car seat is triangle shaped in the center and it makes it easier to carry and the seat isn't banging into your leg like most with a straight handle.

Some of the features of this system include:

* Includes EZ Flex-Loc® infant car seat and base
* Infant car seat accommodates 5 ~ 30 pounds (2.2 and 13.6kg.) and heights of 30 inches or less (76.2cm)
* Large soft head support for the car seat or the stroller
* Peek-a-boo window
* Covered parent tray with two deep cup holders
* Multi-position reclining seat
* Height adjustable handle
* One hand fold
* 5-point safety harness with padded harness covers
* Large storage basket
* Swing-away child tray with snack/cup holders

The, when it comes to the stroller, I really like that it is lightweight and a bit more narrow than most which makes it easier to use in tight spaces. Easy to fold up or open, and the car seat sits securely into the stroller so no need to wake baby taking her out of the seat to put her in the stroller. The cup holders on the stroller are nice to keep a drink in while going out on walks and the swing away tray will make it easy to get her in and out of the stroller when she gets older.

We got the Floral Garden pattern and it is absolutely gorgeous and it totally fits Zoey! There are many colors and patterns to choose from, which allows you to find the one that appeals to you best. I will recommend this to anyone looking for a safe, reliable, affordable, and easy to use system. Making the Baby Trend EZ Ride5 Travel System, a must have when you are heading out with baby!

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

Think Before You Speak: Understanding the Long-Term Effects of Bullying

Bullying has long been considered a childhood problem, but recently much-needed attention has been directed at adult bullies and their targets. It turns out that bullying isn’t necessarily something we outgrow. Not only are there adult bullies and victims, but the long-term effects of childhood bullying can present itself in numerous ways. From targets being more inclined towards substance abuse to lasting self-esteem and self-efficacy issues, bullying is a form of abuse and trauma that doesn’t slough away with adolescence.

Although bullying may not end with adulthood, how it’s presented can change—but not always. Bullies might still take things that don’t belong them, make taunts (but as adults, they’re often veiled as jokes), and generally target specific people in an ongoing power and ego-boosting quest. The long-term effects of bullying can be serious, but vary based on whether the person is the bully or the target.

The Effects on the Bully

It’s no surprise that bullies usually aren’t happy people, whether they’re children or adults. Demeaning others is often a way to make themselves feel better, angle themselves as powerful as a defense mechanism, and exhibiting control and power when they might not have any in other environments. Long-term effects of bullying on the bully may include:

·         A lack of healthy relationships. This isn’t shocking, but it can be detrimental. Bullies who don’t learn how to develop positive, healthy relationships might be drawn into abusive relationships (whether they’re the abuser or victim). Social wellness is just as vital as physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health. Unfortunately, building healthy relationships requires practice that some bullies may not have attained.

·         Substance abuse. Bullies may be more prone to finding other dangerous forms of self-soothing, such as abusing drugs or alcohol, in addition or in lieu of bullying. Worse, substances can exacerbate a bully’s natural aggressive tendencies.

·         Poor parenting. If a bully doesn’t recognize and address childhood issues, they’re more likely to pass on negative conflict resolution techniques to their own children. Encouraging rough housing, making fun of others and even fighting perpetuates the bullying cycle.

·         Low self-esteem. Lacking confidence and self-esteem is linked to a myriad of issues that can affect a person’s overall well-being. Bullying is a Band-Aid approach to “fix” low self-esteem, which typically never works. If a person continues this habit into adulthood, low self-esteem will persist, snowballing into more severe side effects which might include self-harm, seeking out abusive relationships, and exacerbate depression or anxiety.

·         Lingering guilt. Hopefully, bullies do learn empathy and remorse. However, the saying “guilt eats away at you” is common for a reason. If a person doesn’t develop healthy approaches to handle their guilt, perhaps with the help of a mental health therapist, guilt can impact a person’s overall health long-term. In some cases, addressing lingering guilt can require experimenting with numerous approaches.

The Effects on the Victim

Kids are durable, but trauma (whether physical, emotional or mental) can certainly affect a person long-term. Someone who was bullied can experience a plethora of long-term effects, including:

·         Poor leadership skills. Leadership isn’t something you can master, and even perceived great leaders are always changing, growing and evolving. However, the blow to a person’s self-esteem from bullying can prevent them from pursuing managerial and leadership positions they might want or otherwise be well-suited for. Bullying can potentially harm a person’s professional success for years.

·         Lack of advocating for oneself. Somewhat aligned with poor leadership skills, victims might not have the capacity to advocate for themselves professionally or personally due to bullying. Lacking self-love, self-confidence, and the tools necessary for self-advocacy can keep a person from success and leverage in every aspect of their life.

·         Avoiding confrontation to a severe degree. Victims can often confuse healthy confrontation and conflict resolution with bullying. It’s normal to avoid any confrontation when a victim might relate it to getting bullied. A popular tip for victims is to ignore their bullies to decrease interest. This sometimes work in schoolyard settings, but ignoring conflict that needs to be addressed won’t do a victim any favors as an adult. Knowing when to confront and when to walk away is a life skill victims can struggle with.

·         Substance abuse. Like bullies, victims may be more likely to self-soothe with substances. Whether they call it “taking the edge off” or use substances as a tool for false courage, it’s an easy trap to fall into. Oftentimes, victims might start experimenting with substances in their teenage years, veering into abuse. This can set them up for a lifetime of substance abuse challenges.

·         Eating disorders. From restriction via anorexia to binge eating disorder (BED), eating disorders stem from several factors, including genetic. However, control is a common aspect of most types of eating disorders and naturally attractive to victims who felt they lacked control with bullies. Eating disorders are the deadliest mental disorder and the most under-diagnosed and under-insured. Like alcoholism, eating disorders are a lifelong disorder that can be managed, but not cured.

Fortunately, bullying is increasingly becoming a serious issue, and many schools have adopted a zero-tolerance policy. However, bullying isn’t restricted to only children or schools. Children may be bullied at home or in other non-school environments, and it doesn’t necessarily end in adulthood. Understanding the long-term impact of bullying on both sides of the fence is key to dismantling it within society.


Camping Must Haves from Blue Rhino

With the weather warming up and those trails calling our names, many of us find that we get excited to pack up and head out for those camping adventures. Like many, when we go camping we like to not only pack up the tents and sleeping bags, but we also find that we need to pack up other items like the cooking gear. So when we were sent a selection of cooking gear products to review from Blue Rhino, I found them to be a great selection to add to our list of must haves for camping!

To get started, we found the Mr. Bar-B-Q International Series Paella Pan to be a great addition to add to our selection of pots and pans that we use when camping. It allows us to cook up a variety of dishes while camping, and the size is perfect for placing on our grill or on the grill grate that we place over a hot campfire. The pan is non-stick, allowing us to cook up those fish we catch and more for dinners outdoors! Available at TJ Max; $14.99.

Along with Mr. Bar-B-Q International Series Paella Pan, we also found the Mr. Bar-B-Q Kickstand Tools to be perfect for helping to keep our cooking tools from falling on the ground! The kickstand is simple to set up and allows you to keep your utensils for cooking from accidentally slipping off the grill or falling in the dirt while cooking by the campfire. Included with the stand you also get a tool set that includes a Kickstand Spatula, Fork, Tongs and Basting Brush with arched handles to provide maximum comfort and control. Available at Field and Stream and Camping World; $19.99.

Then when it comes to a camping tradition with my family as well as many others, we found the Hershey's S'mores Caddy to be perfect for keeping all of our s'mores fixings and tools in when we are camping! This box is very cute, and has the trays on the inside that allow us to organize our ingredients for those epic campfire s'mores that we all look forward to on our camping trips. I also like that along with the caddy, we can get other s'mores cooking essentials to go along with it that include a grilling basket, melting tray and more! You can find the Hershey's S'mores Caddy available at Target and Lowe’s; $17.99. Which when you add all of these together, help to make your next camping or cookout adventure, that much easier and enjoyable!

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

The Main Rules Of Men’s Style

The ability to dress great can be achieved with time. You should improve your style gradually. However, the main advantage of men’s clothing is that it is quite conservative. Therefore, in order to look stylish, a man has to remember a few basic rules that allow him to be “tastefully dressed”. Below we present you the main rules of how to combine different clothes and accessories from your wardrobe:

1. Choose the right size of clothes. This mistake will be too conspicuous. If you do not want to look sloppy, then you have to change clothes that are larger than your size.

2. Compare the colors of your belt, shoes, and bags. The colors must match or be close in the color scheme. It is better to adhere to the traditional colors: black, brown or gray.

3. Experts argue that most women like if men are dressed in blue clothes. You can even ask them about it on Dating Brides.  It is also nice if a shirt is lighter than a suit. This allows you to look slimmer, smart and athletic.

4. Don’t wear square-toed shoes. If you want to look stylish, then change your shoes with a square toe on the classic variants.

5. Don’t wash your jeans clothes too often. Thus, you will avoid some discoloration. It is recommended to turn out the outer side of the clothes inside before washing.

6. Tuck up your jeans. Your elegant shoes will be clearly visible. In addition, it is the leading trend of the current year.

7. Don’t wear white sports socks. Everything is simple here – socks shouldn’t be sports. It must be the same range of colors as your trousers are.

8. Do not use bags that do not fit the style. You have to buy a bag of good quality, instead of the usual sports backpack.

9. Don’t wear the same pair of leather shoes more than two days. This not only diversifies your style but helps extend “life” of your shoe.

10. Do not overfill your wallet. Don’t put in your wallet a lot of money, credit cards, and numerous photos of your family. Put there some cash and one credit card. Other things can be put in your bag.

11. Watches are the most important accessories that can be worn by a man. Do not spare money on a nice watch that suits your lifestyle, personality, and position in society. If your watch collection is not limited to one instance, then you should choose the appropriate watches to your suits: a black strap for a good pair of black shoes and a belt; a brown strap for your brown shoes and a belt; a silver strap is for all other combinations.

12. Sunglasses are one of the brightest and most universal ways of expression. There must be several pairs of stylish glasses in the arsenal of every man. Sunglasses not only perform their direct functions but also complete the image of a man. Try to find glasses that are not only fit to the shape of your face but also express your personality. If you are unable to choose you own sunglasses, ask a sales consultant for help or more experienced friends.

13. Don’t think that only expensive clothes are stylish. If you visit some brand shops, you will be convinced that it is possible to look stylish without superfluous expenses.

You will look elegant and spectacular following these tips. Try to leave the so-called “comfort zone” more often: wear clothes that are unusual for you. Doing so, you can discover a lot of new things.


Friday, April 21, 2017

Give Mom the Hip Baby Wrap this Mothers Day!

When it comes to finding those must have gifts to give mom this Mother's Day, we find that when it comes to the moms we know, that they are all at the various stages of motherhood. Like many, when I seek out the Mother's Day gifts to give the new moms on my list, I like to seek out the products that I found of use when I had babies in the home. And like many, I have found that those baby wearing products can help to make life easier for both moms and dads when carrying around baby. So when we were sent the Hip Baby Wrap Ring Sling to review, I was excited to have Heather check it out and share her thoughts for our readers. You can read Heather's review below.

Being able to wear Zoey while trying to get things done around the house, or out and about makes things easier when my hands are free. This Ring Sling is easy to use and adjust, and my little Zoey loves being snuggled in it and against me. It is very comfortable to wear and easy to put her in and out of. The Ring Sling is made for babies 8-35 pounds, great for nursing on the go or to use as a nursing cover, made with 100% cotton, hand loomed, uses breathable fabric, a top quality aluminum ring, lightweight fabric so no one gets too warm, and you can machine wash and dry. They have different colors available as well allowing you to get the colors that coordinate best with your style. 

For me personally, this is my first experience with a ring sling and I love it! It is much more comfortable than a traditional carrier, and my baby can tuck her little legs up into a frog like position instead of spreading  her legs around me. She is much more comfortable this way and doesn't fuss. Which makes the Hip Baby Wrap Ring Sling a great product and I highly recommend getting one to use if you have a baby or to give to the new mom in your life this Mother's Day.

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