Helen Ficalora Summer Sunshine Review + Giveaway

With summer upon us, we've been challenged with looking great while attending things such as concerts, family picnics, reunions, festivals, beach outings, and more. As a mom, we're thrown the duties of getting the kids dressed, bags packed, food, snacks and drinks situated, making sure everything and everyone is ready, and then worrying about ourselves. After getting the kids dressed, I'm exhausted. So getting myself ready has to be quick and easy.

Helen Ficalora's Signature Sterling Silver Alphabet Charm on an 18" Sterling Silver chain makes looking stunning simple! This beautiful little charm is perfect. It's just the right size, light and gorgeous. The chain fits perfectly on my neck and is comfortable. The charm sits perfectly and doesn't weigh my neck down. 

I love that Helen Ficalora's many options for charms go great with any outfit. You can get initials, designs and more stamped simply and perfectly on a little disk. Each piece is unique and beautiful. They come in 14k Yellow Gold, 14k White gold, 14k Pink Gold and Sterling silver. 

The Sun Cutout Charm is absolutely perfect for any sunny summertime outfit. With a sun shape cut into a circle charm, it matches any outfit, and is perfect to show off with those cute summer sundresses. 

Want to win your own Sterling Silver Sun Cutout Charm on an 18" Sterling Silver chain? Enter below to win!

WaterWipes - the new chemical free baby wipes

This post was sponsored by WaterWipes as part of an Ambassador Program for Influence Central. I received complimentary products to facilitate my review.

We're doing the best we can for our children, protecting them, taking care of them, cleaning up after them, and trying to be aware of the things we give and use with them. Why stop with the things we use to wipe their booty?

The newest booty-wiping wipes are perfect for even the most sensitive skins. WaterWipes is a chemical free baby wipe that contains only two ingredients - 99.9% pure Irish water and 0.1% grapefruit seed extract. They come in resealable packages, making them easy to use on-the-go and at home. If they feel like they're starting to dry out, just juggle the package around for a little bit, shaking up the water, and they will moisten themselves again! It's as easy as that.

Aurora and I at birth. I tucked her in my hospital gown to keep us both warm.

Aurora and I at birth. I tucked her in my hospital gown to keep us both warm.

Both durable and effective without containing any of the harmful chemicals that may be found in other baby wipes, WaterWipes proves a safer, natural option for your kiddos. Available at Walmart, Amazon and more, WaterWipes are the best safe disposable wipes to hit shelves here in the US. 

WaterWipes are great for more than just wiping booty. They're perfect for washing faces, cleaning messes, letting the kiddos pretend to wash windows, wiping fingers and toes and other parts, and more! What do you use wipes for?

Another thing parents share with their kids is not only the bond of diaper changing, but the skin-to-skin bond that is very important. Holding your child close, sharing body heat, little one listening to your heart beat, falling asleep, drifting into the sound of your breath syncing.. it's something every parent and child love.

Stephanie and her little man

Stephanie and her little man

It's also a very healthy bond. Having baby naked, resting on mom or dad's chest is the perfect place to be, especially right after birth. This not only helps regulate temperature, but helps baby's heart rate and breathing rate be more stable, and helps regulate blood sugar. Skin-to-skin is good for both term and preemie babies. Even babies on oxygen benefit from skin to skin! 

Check out WaterWipe's Pure Love video, which highlights the important of skin-to-skin contact between mom and baby. Did you get to do skin-to-skin with your kiddos? Share a photo in comments or on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and let me know! Tag me and let me see those beautiful babies and the wonderful bond!

Snuggle-Pedic Mattress by Relief-Mart Review

After a month of the Snuggle-Pedic Mattress by Relief-Mart living in my bedroom, I have to say my sleep and daily life has absolutely changed. I've had severe back pain from all my pregnancies, and my husband has had pain from working at the post office and the years in the Army. He has compartment syndrome in his legs, and getting a good nights sleep has been hard for him for years. 

With that being said, this mattress has helped us both get a great nights sleep and feel better all day. 

It arrived in a box smaller than I expected. My kids loved watching it "blow up" from this thin rectangle to this giant queen sized mattress. Once it got to full size, we left it sit on the living room floor while we went out (the directions state to let it sit for a few hours before use.) 

When we got home, of course I couldn't resist laying on it. It is super soft and comfortable. 

After the first two weeks, I noticed the pain in my back started feeling less. I would wake up less frustrated, my back less tense. My husband said he noticed his legs didn't feel so pinched either. Hearing him say he was in less pain was definitely a shock, and a great thing! 

We've now owned this mattress for over a month, and our pain isn't completely gone, but it is a lot less strained to sleep, and I've noticed I've had less headaches and better restful sleep. We're both waking up in a better mood and rested. 

Just look how squishy and soft this mattress is!! I couldn't believe how squishy soft it was. It has no springs in it, no hard parts, it's just pure squishy soft goodness. This is the perfect mattress for everyone.

I'm so glad this mattress is in our room now. It's been a blessing! I highly recommend it to everyone I talk to!

 

Check out the Snuggle-Pedic Mattress by Relief-Mart on Amazon! Don't forget to get a mattress cover and pillow to go with it, Relief-Mart has all of those great products to help with a great nights sleep.

Mrs Thinsters Cookies Thins Review + Giveaway

The crunchy, thin, delicious goodness of a yummy cookie... 

The goodness of a cookie with no corn syrup, no GMOs, no artificial flavors or preservatives, nut allergen friendly, and no growth hormones.

What is this mystical cookie I speak of?

Mrs Thinster's Cookie Thins are all of the above and so much more. Seriously! Each cookie is super thin, super crunchy, and packed full of so much flavor. It was hard to put the bag down! 

When she found that she had only made enough cookie dough for one tray, she decided to drop teaspoons of her homemade dough onto a cookie tray, and that began Mrs Thinster's Cookie Thins. With cookies such as chocolate chip, cake batter, brownie batter and toasted coconut, all of the bags are filled with delicious crunchy mini cookies, the perfect snack for hanging out with family or on the go! The bags are resealable too! They're the perfect snack to send to school with the kiddos.

Do you want to try Mrs Thinsters Cookie Thins? Enter below to win! 3 winners will win a variety pack of cookies! 

The Life We Never Expected Book Review + Giveaway

I remember the day life threw us a giant curve ball... "Your son has Sensory Processing Disorder." 

What? Is that something I gave him? What can we do to cure it? What is it?

The Life We Never Expected is about Andrew and Rachel Wilson's life after it was turned in circles when both of their children were diagnosed with regressive autism. Exploring the depths of feelings, challenges, the truth behind what parents go through, feel, deal with, and the battles they overcome, this book reaches into the soul and opens up a new, hard to imagine world. The Wilsons share personal stories, encouraging and honest ones, rooted in the truth of God's Word. They discuss lessons they've learned, their fights for joy and the trials they endured. 

This book not only touched my soul, but it showed me that my feelings, my thoughts, my guilt, my anger, my everything is felt by others out there. All the challenges, the struggles, the happy and the sad and the overwhelming... it's shared. It's common. And it's ok. I'm not alone. God is there to hold our hand through this journey, and He won't let go. He blessed us with this little boy, and while we have some extra challenges to go with his amazing personality, he's the greatest gift God could have ever given us.

Check out The Life We Never Expected on Amazon!

Want to win your own copy of The Life We Never Expected? Enter below!

Safety 1st Grow and Go EX Air Car Seat Review

With summer in our hands, traveling is something we're all doing. Whether it be to family's houses, the beach, the lake, north, south, by air, by water or by car.. we're all on the go. 

My family is in Ohio, and we visit them when the time fits. We also do a lot of outings during the summer, from going to the zoo, visiting Aunty and others, going to the park, and more. We love to travel in style, but also safely.

The Grow and Go EX Air car seat by Safety 1st is not only the perfect seat for us, but it's super safe too! 

With the AAP guidelines of keeping kids rear facing longer, the Grow and GO EX Air does just that. This car seat is comfortable to use for extended use at each stage, with limits of up to 50 lbs rear-facing and 100 lbs in the belt-positioning booster mode. 

From newborn to toddler, this is the only seat you'll need! It can be used rear-facing from 5 to 50 lbs, and includes 3 comfy reversible pillows for a snug fit that removes as baby grows. In forward-facing mode, the Grow and Go EX Air sports harness holders keeping the harness out of the way making it easy to get kiddos in and out of the seat. You can adjust the harness and the headrest with one hand!! When your kiddo is ready, you can turn the seat into a belt-positioning booster for up to 100 lbs!

My favorite feature about this seat is that it's super easy to clean. When we're traveling, my kids make messes. From spilled drinks to accidental diaper explosions to food and who knows what else, there's always a mess to clean. The cover comes off without having to take apart all the straps and fight with them! I hate fighting with straps, squishing my hands into places under and around plastic pieces that don't move, just to find that I cant reach the clips to move the harnesses. It's too much of a hassle. No more fighting! YAY!

It also takes up less room when used rear-facing, adding up to 7 inches of extra room. Even better when I have 5 car seats in my car! The integrated cup holders are nice. I don't have to worry in an accident about the cup holders coming loose - they're connected! My kiddos can store their drinks and toys in the cup holders and not worry! 

Traveling with this seat has been a breeze. It's easy to install, easy to use, and fits perfectly. It is a little on the heavier side, but isn't as bad as some of the other seats. Both the kiddos and I love this seat.

We Found Dory at JCPenney

We've been searching long and hard for little Dory. She's one of our favorite characters. The kids love her personality, her jokes, her enthusiasm. I will admit, I do too!

Well, we don't have to look any further. Dory is now living with us thanks to JCPenney and Disney Apparel from Okie Dokie! 

The new Finding Dory line features adorable pieces ranging in size from Toddler 2T to 5T and Preschool 4-7X! In celebration of the movie that just came out on 6/17 in theaters, JCPenney has all the stylish Finding Dory items for your kiddos! It's a fusion of Okie Dokie's fun, playful colors and modern on-trend looks with Disney's latest desirable characters. 

With these adorable tops from Disney's Finding Dory, my kids are rocking their favorite characters in style. With vibrant colors on soft, breathable fabric, they're stylin' and profilin' for their fun in the sun!

The Knot Back Tank Top is perfect for Aurora. She looks so cute in it! It has a little knot in the back that makes the straps criss-cross. The Dory in the middle is glittery and the fin is a mesh that sticks out. It's cute!

The Bow Back Tank Top fits Emmalynn perfectly. It has a cute little bow in the back, ruffle shoulder/sleeves and such vibrant bold colors.

The Tank Top has the perfect fit for his muscular little body. It fits him well, and is absolutely adorable.  The word FINTASTIC is bold, the colors stand out, and it's so soft!

The Tank Top that Addi is wearing is absolutely gorgeous. The rainbow and heart are both glittery and beautiful. The little fish are so cute. 

When two great brands collaborate to create a unique line of kid's apparel match-ups, including graphic tops, bottoms, dresses, jackets and more, they're sold exclusively at JCPenney!

Find Dory Disney Apparel by Okie Dokie available exclusively at JCPenney!

“Are We There Yet?” Your Road Trip Safety Check List

“Are We There Yet?” Your Road Trip Safety Check List

By: Ryan Hawker, Safety 1st Car Seat Safety Expert

Gas prices are starting to drop! Yes! Therefore it’s no secret that this summer AAA is predicting more and more people will be hitting the roads for a summer vacation. According to the travel organization, 35% of Americans are planning to take a vacation more than 50 miles from home with two or more immediate family members in the next 12 months.

If you are traveling with little ones a very important tip that most people forget to confirm is that car seat or home safety is a part of the travel check list. Before you hit the road make sure to take a look in the back seat to confirm your child is in the correct child restraint for his or her height and weight, and that the car seat is installed correctly.

In Your Back Seat:

  • The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) advises parents to keep their toddlers in rear-facing car seats until age 2. The new Safety 1st Grow and Go EX Air, offers a safer and more comfortable ride with extended use at each stage; including up to 50 pounds rear-facing and 100 pounds in the belt-positioning booster mode. Remember, the safest place to install a car seat, rear or forward-facing, is typically in the center of the rear seat. 
  • Always make sure your child is secure by keeping the car seat harness snug. Experts test the snugness with the "pinch test". If you pinch the harness straps at the shoulder and can gather material, it is too lose. Cinch it down. Also, check in with a local Child Passenger Safety Technician to ensure your child’s seat is installed correctly. You can visit a local police department, fire station, AAA office or Safe Kids Chapter for guidance. 
  • It’s something you rarely think about, but car seats expire! You can find the expiration date on the back or the side of the car seat. Also, if a car seat has been in a crash you should not use it. Plastic can warp, materials can fray and the car seat will not protect a child correctly. Always avoid used car seats. The history of a car seat tells a lot about its ability to protect on the road ahead. If you don’t know where it has been, you don’t know if it can protect your child.

On The Road:

  • Road trips often mean long hours in the car, especially when traveling through high volume areas. According toAAA, Fifty-five percent of Americans say they are more likely to take a road trip this year due to lower gas prices, which can lead to more traffic. Make sure your driver is always well-rested and the kids are occupied to reduce distractions. It’s a good idea to keep snacks and activities handy. Also don’t forget a charger for your tablet or iPhone. 
  • Children don’t always do what they’re told but they do often mimic what they observe. According to Safe Ride 4 Kids, almost 40% of children riding in vehicles with unbelted drivers were not wearing belt restraints at the time of an accident. Set a good example and always use your seatbelt. 
  • Protect your car like you would protect your home. It’s important to eliminate projectiles and keep them secured in a bag tucked under the seat or in a compartment. Anything in the car that is not secured is a possible projectile in the event that you stop fast. That could be a child’s toy or a water bottle. In a crash, objects take on greater weight due to crash forces.

At Your Destination:

  • A great way to help your child adjust to sleeping in a new location is to start the process at home before you leave. If your child will be sleeping in a Play Yard during the trip, use it for bed or nap time the entire week before. This will help him or her get used to a new sleep environment. 
  • Are you planning on renting a house for your family vacation this summer? Unfortunately, vacation rentals don’t come child-proofed. Sharp corners and dangerous objects are inevitable. Therefore be sure to pack essential child proofing items in your suitcase. Soften the edges of an unfamiliar house with the Foam Bumper Kit. TheEasy Install Walk-Thru Gate is great for blocking off new staircases that your little one may want to venture down, and don’t forget Plug Protectors, and door Knob Covers are essential for rooms you don’t want little ones venturing into unsupervised, such as the bathroom.

This is a sponsored post from Safety 1st. I was compensated with product but all opinions are of my own, or the writer's of the content.