Monday, May 28, 2012

Fun With Band-Aid and The Muppets

Show of hands: whose children absolutely despise getting their scrapes and cuts cleaned up? My daughters try to wager with Leo or me if they know they have a cut that needs to be cleaned up. Isabella will promise that she doesn't need it to be cleaned-as blood is dripping down her leg and dirt is stuck in her injury. Madelyn will be beg for a juice box, her blankie, or anything besides getting her boo-boo cleaned up.

When I think about what is all under my cabinet to help clean up their scrapes and cuts, one brand automatically comes to mind: Band-Aid. Band-Aid has been around for nearly 100 years and has helped out many parents when it comes up to patching up those cuts. With so many fun Band-Aid options on the market our kids have it so lucky!

Band-Aid has teamed up with Disney's The Muppets in creating an interactive app for your iPad 2, new iPad,  iPhone 4, and/or iPhone 4S. The Band-Aid Magic Vision app is a perfect concept to take your child's mind off of getting their cut cleaned and bandaged up.

The Magic Vision app is incredibly easy to use:

* Download the free app in your App Store

* Once downloaded open up the Magic Vision app

* Scan the Muppets Band-Aid box or bandage and watch The Muppets come to life

I put the Band-Aid Magic Vision app to the test with Isabella. We opened up the app and scanned the bandage. While I cleaned her up she had a blast helping Grover become unstuck from my iPhone screen, taking pictures of Miss Piggy, and helping Kermit swing side to side on his swing. Her favorite by far was Miss Piggy. Taking the snapshots was a fun way for her to not even realize that I was cleaning up a small scrape.

Band-Aid definitely has family in mind when coming up with fun concepts for our children during a moment that could be defined as not so fun. I recommend all of my readers who own one of the devices above to download the interactive app. It is a must have for my family!

I wrote this review while participating in a campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of Band-Aid Brand Adhesive Bandages and received a promotion item to thank me for my participation. 

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Cheerios: Spoonfuls of Stories

Do you remember reading while growing up? I sure do. I have been reading for so long and I like to believe that my love of books has helped me tremendously in life. Whether it is to foster imagination, expanding my vocabulary, or to allow me to escape reality for a little while, reading has helped me become the person that I am today.

As a parent it is my responsibility to ensure that I make time to read with my daughters. Their bookshelves are crammed with books of all sizes. Some are classic books that have been around for a long time. Other books are by new and upcoming authors that I hope will someday turn into a classic for my childrens' children.

Cheerios is celebrating their 10th anniversary of their wonderful reading program Spoonfuls of Stories. Started back in 2002 it has helped bring books into families and encourages reading with your children and to your children. In their 10 years they have given away 60 MILLION books in Cheerios cereal boxes and have donated $3.8 million dollars to First Book--a non-profit, award winning children's literacy program that provides low income children the opportunity to own their first books.

To celebrate their 10th anniversary, Cheerios is offering six phenomenal stories in boxes of Cheerios. The books that are included this year are written in English and Spanish, the stories are wonderful and my daughters have fallen in love with each one. Cheerios has also made it easy so you can see the book through the box, so there is no chance of you grabbing a box that has a book that you already own.

Here are the six fabulous books that are being given away this year:

1) Noodle & Lou by Liz Garton Scanlon

2) Hello Baby! by Mem Fox

3) If I Were a Jungle Animal by Amanda Ellery

4) Peeny Butter Fudge by Toni Morrison & Slade Morrison

5) Mostly Monsterly by Tammi Sauer

6) Can I Just Take a Nap? by Ron Rauss

This program is so special! To be able to offer books to all children means a lot to me. I want every child to discover that reading is fun. Do you have a favorite book from childhood? Do you read it to your own children now?

A HUGE thank you to Cheerios & Simon and Schuster for the opportunity to read the above books with my daughters. We received all six books in order to facilitate the review.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Huggies: Making Life Easier for Moms & Dads

Being a mom of three daughters I have had plenty of chances to try out a variety of baby diapers and wipes. You name it I have tried it and either loved it or hated it--and I am one of those moms who will tell you every horrific diaper story that I have encountered.

Diapers have been in my life for over 4 years now. And hands down my favorite brand? Huggies. For me there is no comparison. I have loved Huggies wipes for years. They are thick, absorbent, and I don't need a handful of them to clean up what should be a one to two wipe situation.

The same goes for Huggies and their diapers. They absorb wonderfully and I know when I have a Huggies on my child that I won't be suffering from overnight leaks. Which, in my opinion, is one of the worst ways to be woken up. Who actually likes to start loads of laundry before they can even pour a mug of coffee?

Huggies has now made improvements to both their diapers and wipes. What could be more wonderful than what they currently produce? The Huggies Snug & Dry Diapers are now equipped with a leak lock feature. What this does is leak wetness in and keep your baby, their bed and what they come in contact with, dry. Brynlie has eczema and I try very hard to put her in diapers that won't cause a breakout. The Huggies Snug & Dry Diapers have done a great job at locking moisture in. She is rash free and has yet to leak through the diapers!

The new One & Done Wipes are in a word, wonderful. They are thick and live up to their name of One & Done. With other wipes I have to use so many to clean up a diaper blow out. As much as I wish those days were over, there are still times when I open Brynlie's diaper and am amazed that someone so tiny can make such a mess. I use so many less wipes now. The absorbency and thickness does a lot to clean up a messy situation--whether at diaper changing time or meal time, they rock!

Bottom line is this: test out the new Huggies Snug & Dry Diapers and their One & Done Wipes. They're absorbent and have impressed me enough to make the switch.

Want to stay in the loop with Huggies? You can find them here:


I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central for Huggies. I received product samples to facilitate my review and a promotional item to thank me for participating. 

Friday, May 11, 2012

In An Instant.

I believe that there are moments in parenting that we will never forget. First words. First steps. First giggles. Birthdays. Those are the moments that I love. I love to watch my daughters grow, change and experience life. But with the good, there is the bad.

It was a sunny day. One large cloud floated in the sky. I talked to my sister on the phone and joked that I wished the cloud would bring some rain so the girls would go inside. We were all outdoors enjoying the warm day. I took photos of the girls (it had been ages since our last shoot) and they were playing so sweetly.

I distinctly remember looking out onto our driveway and watching Isabella & Madelyn. They were having so much fun together. Sister giggles filled the air. Shrieks. Laughter. Smiles. Madelyn was in the back of a toy wagon that was pulled by Isabella.


Right before the accident...

I waved to my neighbor across the street. He had just arrived home from work. He had let his dogs out to play for a few moments. Brynlie was mesmerized and I was sitting there counting my blessings.

Within an instant there was blood everywhere.

Madelyn half crying.

Looking up with blood pouring out of her mouth. I assumed she had bit her lip.

I was so wrong.

I raced out to grab her, grab my baby who had blood coming out of her mouth so fast.

I rushed her into the bathroom, grabbed a towel and instructed her to hold it there. I had to go out front and grab my other two daughters. I ushered them indoors and raced back to Madelyn.

I think she was in shock at this point. I asked her to open her mouth. I couldn't see some of her teeth.

Shit. She knocked out teeth. Where were her teeth?!

I called Leo, told him I was on the way to the ER. Madelyn was hurt. He was almost home and said he would take her. I grabbed a clean washcloth, held it to her mouth and got her into the van.

I walked to the end of the driveway. There was blood on my driveway. No teeth. Just blood.

Leo ran out of his car. He jumped in the van and they left.

The verdict? My baby girl has two tooth intrusions. Which is a fancy word for you fell and your teeth got shoved back into your gums.

My poor baby. Her mouth is so messed up. Swollen. Still bleeding. She is on an antibiotic to fight an infection, Tylenol with Codeine for pain.

Her follow up is in three months assuming we have no complications before then. We will then be discussing surgery options if needed.

My point is this. Life is fragile. Sometimes in an instant things can go from bliss to a nightmare. Madelyn is so lucky she didn't suffer from a head injury, neck injury or more. I am counting my blessings that it isn't worse.

And for the record? All wagons are now banned from my home. I will never allow one anywhere near my daughters again.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Memoirs Aren't Fairytales: A Story of Addiction

When was the last time that you started a book and absolutely could not put it down? Can you think of a time? For me it had been a very long time. So long in fact that I cannot remember the last book that gripped my attention and had me feeling that I had to know what would happen next.

Enter Memoirs Aren't Fairytales: A Story of Addiction. I have to say that this isn't my typical type of novel. I usually go for something lighthearted with a happy ending. This story is everything but that.


Having gone through a horrible college nightmare Nicole and her best friend, Eric, leave Bangor, Maine for the big city of Boston. Nicole is a fragile young girl who wants nothing more than to erase her past and have a new beginning. With freedom enters possibilities lurking in the shadows. She experiments with drugs and that is when her entire world begins to crash around her. Heroin has taken over her life. A once bright girl has now become addicted to heroin with the first experimentation with it. Her body is covered in track marks. She becomes a prostitute. She loses everything, to include the very ones that she loves.

My Thoughts

Holy cow. When I was asked to read Memoirs Aren't Fairytales: A Story of Addiction by Marni Mann I was unsure if I would--or could--like this book. The synopsis is so dark, so gripping, that I decided to try it out and if I couldn't finish it I wouldn't beat myself up.

I couldn't put it down. In less than 72 hours I completely read the book. I don't have any experience with addiction, neither myself nor my family members, but that didn't stop me from being engrossed with this book. It was written in such a real, lifelike manner that at times I would force myself to put the book down and remind myself that this was merely a story and it was not my life.

I felt for Nicole. I wanted to cry as I read the first time she tried heroin. I felt sick as I read the times she had to sell her body to simply get the drugs that she needed to survive. This book was such a page turner. It was amazing, sad, and gave me a huge wake up call on how truly tragic that addiction and drugs can be on one's life.

My Rating

Definitely 5 out of 5 stars. Although a somewhat dark book, I recommend that everyone reads this story. Addiction is real. Drugs are everywhere. Read this book and become addicted to the reality of what can happen to a seemingly bright, intelligent woman when drugs cross her path.

Where to Buy

Barnes & Noble 

Follow & Fan Author Marni Man


I received an e-book in order to facilitate this review. No other compensation was given and all opinions expressed above are my own. 

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

What Mom Wants for Mother's Day

Is it just me or are retailers totally missing the mark on what moms really want for Mother's Day? Every time I log on to a different website their advertisements are totally in my face and totally making me want to call up the CEO of a majority of these companies.

I mean, come on. In the past two days I have seen ads for kitchen gadgets (because what mom doesn't want to spend more time in the kitchen), fitness dvd's (hey, mom! you could stand to lose some pounds, so here ya go), vacuums (um, honey? you missed a spot...).

Really? When will companies start getting in touch with moms to see what we actually want? In case any companies out there need a push in the right direction, I have come up with a list:

1) 50 Shades of Grey. Alone time reading reading mommy porn? Pour me a glass of Merlot and lock the kids out of my bedroom!

2) Peace and quiet for three hours. No tantrums. Nobody screaming to be nursed. No tears. No cleaning. No cooking. Nothing but me for three glorious hours. And perhaps with #1 above...

3) A maid. Want to say thank you for my hard work? Hire me a maid the day before Mother's Day. That would show me some love right there. Bonus points if said maid comes while I am enjoying three hours of alone time.

4) A mini-vacay. A cottage on the beach. A bed & breakfast. Either one of those is fine with me. Just a night away with my husband for some much needed, much overdo alone time.

5) A cute wineglass. Something that makes me smile when I get it out of my cabinet. Nothing with the word "mommy" plastered all over it.

6) A pedicure that is administered by someone other than me. My pedicures consist of me locking my kids out of the bathroom to throw some polish on as fast as possible. This is usually a two day process. Who has time to sit and wait for each coat to dry while three children are pounding at the door?

So, to all the companies out there. Give us moms what we really want deserve. Wine. Mommy porn. Silence.

Eleven. Ish.

So. Here we are. Elevenish months old.

In 19 days baby girl will be a one. year. old.

It is a surreal feeling knowing that in a blink of an eye my sweet girl will hit that first huge milestone.

She is amazing. Lovable. Sweet. Hysterical.

She has three teeth. One on top, two on bottom. It is sort of hillbilly-ish. But I love it.

She loves to eat. Anything and everything. And, yes, that still involves cat/dog food when she can find it.

No walking, just a bunch of standing.

She has started to throw mini tantrums. They are adorable and over the top.

She is still 100% a momma's girl. Oh, how she loves her momma.

She loves to dance, loves to swing, loves babies.

Loves the outdoors--especially potted plants, dirt, sand. So fun!

I hope the next 19 days slow down. I don't think I am ready to call her my big one year old...