Sunday, March 23, 2014

No More Crib!

This past week my boys room has gone through drastic changes. We gave our crib to a friend and Nick transitioned to the toddler bed as though nothing had changed. I had planned on keeping Nick in the crib as long as possible and I knew that time was up when climbing out became more of a game instead of going to sleep. Getting rid of the crib got rid of the games and bedtime was easier!

The next step was getting Chris in a bed.  Being my first I coddled him a lot.  He cried I would run and snuggle and that evolved to him coming downstairs and eventually led to him just sleeping on the couch for over two years now.  It has always been my goal to get him to sleep in his room and since we got rid of the crib I figured this was the time.  I let him pick out the bed and the bedding.  He was SO excited.  I couldn't believe how excited he was about the new blue race car bed and the new monster truck bedding.  I was hopeful but still doubtful it would work.

His bed was finally ready we got new mattresses and I had Chris help me rearrange the room and then bedtime came and I got a flat out no and the tears started coming.  I couldn't force it so I let him sleep on the couch.  Again.  The next day I asked him why he didn't want to sleep in his cool new bed and he told me there were ghosts up there and they stare at him when he lays in the bed.  Um, yeah I'm scared lol.  I dropped the subject and then bedtime came again.  I asked him if he wanted to sleep upstairs and he said NO.  I then asked him if he wanted to take his Thomas flashlight with him and I got an enthusiast YES!  I couldn't believe it.  He grabbed his blankets and marched upstairs.  I told him to just push the button if the light went out and he said O.K. I love you mommy, good night. BITTERSWEET.

As I write this I miss seeing my baby sleeping next to me.  It is something I want but miss all at once.  It is his first night and I am hopeful he will still be up there in the morning.  I want him to enjoy sharing a room with his brother.  This is truly your first night in a big boy bed.  Love you.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Perrigo Nutritionals Toddler Food & Formula ~ Review and Giveaway

Disclosure:  “The Perrigo Nutritionals product, information and two gift packs have been provided by Perrigo Nutritionals.”

Having two toddler boys we go through tons of food.  Sometimes it seems like I go grocery shopping and within a day tons of items are already gone.  Toddler snacks are one of those items..mainly crunchies, puffs, and yogurt bites.  They will eat their entire dinner and then want a snack and the entire package will be gone.  Going through so many toddler snacks I see myself turning to store brands because they are normally the cheaper option.  It is actually one of the categories where I regularly buy store brands.  You save a great deal of money no coupons required!

You have probably seen many of these store brands in stores already.  Here are the brands I received:

  • Up and Up at Target
  • Parent's Choice at Walmart
  • Cottontails at Giant
  • Comforts for Baby at Kroger
  • Meijer Baby at Meijer

I was actually surprised to learn that they are all made by the same company, Perrigo Nutrionals. Here is some fun information about them:

 About Perrigo Nutritionals
·         Many moms are not aware that they can save up to 50 percent on infant formula by choosing a store brand over a national brand
·         Store Brand Formula is nutritionally comparable to the national brands, yet are typically up to half the price, and can save you about $600 a year
·         Perrigo Nutritionals is the largest supplier of Store Brand Infant Formula and nutrition products in the world and one of only four companies recognized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for meeting the strict FDA requirements for safety, nutrition and quality for infant formula-manufacturing in the United States
·         Same standards and expertise used to develop infant formula applied to toddler foods
·         Toddler foods are appropriately developed for variety of stages of growth and motor skills with quality, nutritional ingredients to create foundation of good nutrition

Even though I am already a fan of store brands it makes me feel more confident purchasing store brands knowing they are all made by the same company.  When I went to the grocery store this week I compared what I would have spent on toddler food and snacks had I bought national brands instead of store brands and my savings was around $16 for a weeks worth of toddler snacks.  In a year that is over $800 in savings for me.  So what do my boys think of the brands we tried?

No complaints at all as these boys chowed down!  I actually had to hide everything from them so I could take a pic before they ate it all.  My older son Chris reached for the Comforts Baby strawberry flavored puffs.  My younger one, Nick, grabbed the Comforts Baby berry flavored yogurt bites.  

While the boys were chowing down I glanced through this awesome book I received with everything.  If you know me I don't read anything aside from children's books but I was hooked!  The book is called, "Say Goodbye to Survival Mode," by Crystal Paine.  If you are reading my blog then you just might of heard of her as she hosts the popular blog  I pretty much can't stop reading it.  I love all of her ideas a lot of which I already do.  I try to keep life simple so there is less stress and her book focuses on a lot of ways to do just that.  Here are just a few of her money saving tips!

Crystal Paine’s 5 Money Saving Tips for Families
Create a Budget
A budget gives you parameters and purpose, it gives you boundaries, and it gives you freedom to live creatively within those boundaries.

Shop With Cash
When you shop with a credit card (or even a debit card, for that matter!) you can have your budget in your head and you can do the best to stick with it when you check out, but it’s so much easier to go just a little bit over here and there when you’re swiping!

Plan a Menu
When you have a plan in place for what you’re supposed to be eating each meal and you’ve already purchased the ingredients for those recipes, it’s a lot harder to justify chucking the plan for takeout.

Use Coupons
Coupons are a great way to save a lot of money on your grocery bill, but they can be hard to keep up with. Clipping, sorting, and organizing coupons takes time — so enter a coupon database! You’ll have access to printable and other coupons currently available and it’s one of the most effective and efficient ways to save money on groceries.

Buy Store Brands
One way to save a great deal of money on your grocery budget is to learn to like and use a variety of brands. The sooner you can get over being a brand-snob, the more your pocketbook will thank you.
For example, while I breast fed my children, moms who choose to formula feed can save up to 50 percent by switching to store brand formula, which meets the same FDA quality standards as expensive name brands. There are also coupons available at a website -  This one simple change can save moms about $600 a year. 

I also have the wonderful opportunity to awesome a package filled with all the goodies I received above to one of my readers.  Just enter in the Rafflecopter below!  And remember don't forget the store brands :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, March 14, 2014

Disney Jr Live on Tour ~ Pirates & Princesses!!

Disclosure:  I received tickets for my family and I in order to write this review but all opinions and thoughts are always my own!

I was so excited to take my older son Chris on a date tonight to check out Disney Junior Live on Tour, Pirates & Princesses.  The show opened tonight at the Rosemont Theater and it was a fabulous time!  From beginning to end the show was exciting and we couldn't help but sing along to all of our favorite songs.

The show opens with Mickey and Minnie coming out and then goes into a full on live episode of Sofia the First.  It was like watching an episode with all of your favorite songs and characters.  Cinderella even makes a surprise visit!  Our favorite song is Biggest is Best and we were thrilled when they started singing it.

You can see just how into the show Chris was!  He was singing and playing along.  They really try to get the kids involved at some parts which is fun.  Can you tell how far back we are...row Q on the upper level.  So almost to the very top but they were really great seats.  We could see everything perfectly and it wasn't as crowded as some of the lower sections.

Next was our personal favorite Pirates!!  We are huge fans of Jake and the Neverland Pirates so it was really exciting to see all of the characters live in person.  The Tic Tic Croc even showed up to bother stinky Captain Hook.  Peter Pan also came to help Jake escape and saved the day!  

It was a really fun time and the show will be in Rosemont at the Rosemont Theater through March 17th so get some tickets today.  It is well worth it and if you have any Sofia or Jake fans they will have a fabulous time. Don't forget to use the discount code too.

Rosemont Theatre in Rosemont, IL. March 14-17, 2014 

Grab your tiaras and doubloons and join us for Disney Junior Live On Tour! Pirate & Princess Adventure. Mickey and Minnie are taking their seats too at this never-before-seen live show featuring your favorite characters from Disney Junior's hit series, Sofia the First and Jake and the Never Land Pirates. Get swept up in the excitement as Sofia and her family prepare for a royal celebration that helps us all learn the true meaning of being a princess with a special appearance from Cinderella. Then it's off to Never Land where Jake and his swashbuckling friends Izzy and Cubby, with a little help from Peter Pan, battle Captain Hook to unlock treasure hidden inside a mysterious volcano. It's danger and dueling on the high seas as Jake discovers what it takes to be a true hero. Filled with new music, amazing effects, thrilling action and endless surprises, your whole family will sing, shout, and soar into the action when Disney Junior Live On Tour! Pirate & Princess Adventure sails into your town.

My readers can Save $5 on all weekday shows by using code MOM. Get Tickets Today-

Discount does not apply to Front Row or VIP seats. No double discounts. Service charges, handling, and facility fees may apply.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

My Disney Side @Home Celebration!

Disclosure:  This is a sponsored post through MomSelect.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.

I was thrilled when I found out I was selected to host a Disney @Home Celebration.  My family is a huge fan of Disney and anything related to it.  I could barely keep my boys hands out of the box when we were unpacking everything.  There were tons of wonderful favors and gifts.  T-shirts for us to decorate, a beautiful Disney love print for all the guests, and tons of paper to print pics with HP and their website TwoSmiles.

My boys have their birthday together and we were already planning on a Disney theme of Cars.  Everyone came in their Disney attire and we celebrated the boys and took pics by a huge cars mural.  All the food had themes from Maters tater salad to iced tea (gasoline for your engines!) from Flo's V8-Cafe.  It was a blast and the boys were thrilled when they saw all of the awesome decorations.

Like I said we are huge Disney fans!  We have our very first family trip planned for September of this year.  You can check out our awesome countdown widget in my right sidebar.  Chris and I have both been to Disney world but it is Josh and Nicks first time so I am excited to see their reactions.  We have been to several Disney on Ice shows and are seeing our first Disney stage show this week!

So whether you have a trip planned to one of the fabulous Disney resorts in your future or just a Disney fan at home I hope that you can have a wonderful celebration as well.  Princesses, princes, pirates and fairies everywhere should be celebrated!  You can check out some fabulous ides and tips for planning your Disney celebration whether it is big or small at the Disney Side Celebrations website.  It is full of recipes, printable activities, games and more to help and inspire tons of magic.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Dial Deep Cleansing Hand Soap ~ #Giveaway

Disclosure:  The Dial brand provided me with a sample of Dial Deep Cleansing Hand Soap in exchange for a product review.  However, all the opinions expressed here are my own.

As a busy hard working mom I find a lot of pleasure in the small things and Dial's new Deep Cleansing Hand Soap is now one of those pleasures.  It is one of the most luxurious hand soaps I have ever used.  The scents are just amazing!  I was able to try water blossoms which went in my bathroom and yellow raspberry which I placed in my kitchen.  I am a scent freak and really try to coordinate the scent with the room.

I love the styling of the bottle as well.  I think it has a wonderful tall and slender look instead of short and fat which conserves space.  My counter space in every room is very valuable.  But that is not the best part.  My absolute favorite thing about Dial's new Deep Cleansing Hand Soap is the tiny micro-scrubbers.  They gently exfoliate your skin and along with moisturizing it so if you are like me and an obsessive hand washer your hands become so nice and smooth instead of dry and rough.  This is a truly luxurious hand soap!

I was able to try two of the scents as I said above and can't wait to try the third!  Check out the three scents below and leave me a comment telling me which one you want to try the most.  One of my readers will get to try out Dial's new deep cleansing hand soap for themselves so be sure to enter in the rafflecopter below!

Yellow Raspberry & Black Sugar refreshes your senses with a tart and rich sweetness.

Water Blossoms invigorates with a crisp floral scent inspired by aquatic botanicals.

Coconut Lime Verbena brightens your day with juicy and tangy citrus.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Glen Eden Resort ~ Spring Break Discounts

Well living in Chicago I can say I am thoroughly sick of winter, cold, snow and ice.  I am just plain ready for spring but I know that is not going to happen for another month or three so it is probably time to just embrace it and enjoy it!  I think being stuck in out house so much is the biggest part of the problem and after looking at the pictures of Glen Eden Resort I think I really could enjoy the snow.  I have been skiing in Wisconsin but it doesn't even come close to the scenery here.

The landscape is just beautiful.  If I have to be around snow this is where I would want to be.  The rooms look gorgeous as well.  The thing I love most about vacations in the wilderness is that the rooms tend to be very generous in their size which is a huge plus for my family and I.  I might not be ready for the long trek to Alaska but sure would love to check out Colorado from the comforts of Glen Eden resort.  The name says it all right!?

Spring Break vacationers who want to be off the beaten path but still close to a major ski resort look no further than Glen Eden Resort! 
Glen Eden Resort is a small resort just north of Steamboat Springs on the Elk River, in a ranching community where the cows outnumber the people. The resort has two and three bedroom accommodations, with fully equipped kitchens, living and dining areas. The main lodge hosts a restaurant and tavern, two hot tubs, and wifi. Once you walk out the door there is a wide variety of winter recreational opportunities such as snowmobiling, horseback riding, ice fishing, cross country skiing, and snowshoeing.
Last minute Spring Break Deals! Good until April 30th! Save 15% on two or three nights and 25% on four plus nights at Glen Eden Resort call 800-882-0854 for personalized service.