I have recently received a few inquiries regarding guest posts here on Newly Crunchy Mama Of 3. I am honored that other bloggers would like to contribute and be featured here on my little corner of the blogosphere! I would absolutely LOVE to hear what you have to say, and if it is of interest to my readers, I would love to publish your thoughts as well.
So what are you passionate about? Do you love cloth-diapering as much as I do? Maybe you found a bullet-proof night time diapering combo you're just itching to share... Are you a foodie and have an amazing recipe that you'd love sharing with everybody? Do you have any parenting stories that will inspire, or maybe get a chuckle out of my readers? Perhaps a craft idea? Maybe there is an issue you feel strongly about and you'd like to get the word out about. The possibilities are endless....
I feel that opening Newly Crunchy Mama Of 3 up to quality guest posts will not only help my blog grow, but can also help you get exposure to YOUR blog or website. It's definitely a win-win situation!
I DO have some simple guidelines regarding guest posts. They can be located here. If you're interested in being a part of the Newly Crunchy Mama Of 3 family, please read my guidelines and contact me with your ideas and/or submissions.
Thanks again for your interest, and I look forward to working with you!
A few days ago, I was very honored to receive the Stylish Blogger Award from Mickey over at A Helicopter Mom! I was very shocked to receive such an award, as this blog is my new venture, and while it's doing very well so far, is nowhere near as popular as some of the blogger biggies out there with gazillions of followers. Hopefully someday! I enjoy blogging though, and this was just reinforcement that I must not totally suck at it, and that I should keep on keeping on. So Thank You, Mickey! I was so happy that you thought I was deserving that me and my babies did a little "happy dance" to celebrate! Boy, am I glad there weren't any cameras rolling, as this mama can not dance! Period. At all. But it's fun to do it anyway sometimes. The babies think it's funny, and they don't speak English yet, so they can't go around announcing to the world what a goof their mommy is!
To accept this award the recipients are asked to do a few things:
7 Things About Brandy:
I would like to pass the Stylish Blogger Award to the following blogs, which I LOVE...And you should, too!
Today's Sponsor Spotlight features Michele, fellow blogger and owner of Miki's Hope and The Very Best Of The Best. (Which are both awesome sites, in my humble opinion!) Please check out her wonderful sites, and follow her blog. She has a blowout Mother's Day event of her own in the works, and you will NOT want to miss out on it! But to stay in the loop, you'll need to head on over and become one of her lovely followers, like myself. :)
Michele is also a consultant for Eclipse Spa, and has generously donated not 1....not 2....but 3 AMAZING products for my Mad About Mama Mother's Day event! I won't go into too much detail and ruin the surprise, but I will tell you these products are fantastic! I received the same products that will be given away, and I tried 2 of them last night, and all I can say is that these products seriously pamper! They *almost* made me forget that I had 2 babies and a preteen that could call for me at any second and interrupt my blissful relaxation. If you had blindfolded me, I would honestly have felt that I was living the high life and being pampered in a luxurious spa setting. But that's the great thing about Eclipse Spa products. You can recreate the whole spa experience in the comfort (or chaos) of your own home!
Eclipse Spa offers many decadent products, such as wonderful, skin softening sugar scrubs, nourishing body and hand lotions, soy candles, and amazing massage oils. They also have gift baskets and a men's section so the hubby can spoil himself a little, too! These products give everyone the chance to have an organic, sumptuous spa experience.
About Eclipse Spa, from Michele's Eclipse Spa website:
Using a synergistic approach in formulating our products, we use ingredients that soothe and protect your skin, and use natural fragrances that can transform your emotions and heal your body.
We are committed to sustainable practices and providing the best ever natural and organic bath & body products for you to turn your bath into an organic spa experience.
Eclipsespa does not support animal testing and uses natural raw ingredients in its products. Most of our herbs and additives have been certified organically grown. Taking further steps to being green we use recycled shipping boxes to send you your orders, and use recycled tissue paper in our all-natural gift packaging. All of our product containers are recyclable, therefore we encourage our customers to recycle their product containers.
All of our labels are hand-applied by individuals who have developmental disabilities that range mental retardation, cerebral palsy, epilepsy, autism, downs syndrome, etc. We are privileged to be providing meaning, opportunity and support to these severely disadvantaged and mentally handicapped adults who would otherwise find it difficult to find a job on "main street. So please excuse a label that might be a little crooked, knowing that you purchased a product from a company who provides assistance to these fabulous individuals.
To reduce our carbon footprint I now hand-pour all of our candles in-house. We use all natural 100% soy wax in our candles and pure essential oils for fragrance which is less toxic to people and the environment. We love providing you with eco-friendly light and comfort while you Spa at Home Tonight.
You heard that right: Eclipse Spa is a company with a conscience and a big heart. They provide eco-friendly, organic products, and they enlist the help of disabled individuals in the labeling process, giving them a sense of purpose and pride, knowing that they, too, can be contributing members of society, when it may have otherwise been hard for them to find employment. I LOVE that! On a personal note, I have worked with developmentally challenged and disabled children before, and they are some of the most beautiful, happy, optimistic individuals I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. It angers me when people are quick to judge them for being "different". I applaud Eclipse Spa for recognizing these wonderful individuals and for giving them a chance to be a part of something great. I wish more companies would follow suit.
Anyway, take a look at just a few of the products that Michele carries on her Eclipse Spa site:
Natural luxury that will make your skin fall in love.
Emerald Bath's peppermint vanilla sugar scrub is the candy your skin craves. Nutritious therapeutic oils mixed with our wild-crafted Shea Butter and sugar will leave your skin radiant, unbelievably soft and protected from the elements , whether you are exposed to sun, wind and cold.
Size: Net Weight: 9 oz
Key Ingredients: Shea Butter and Pumpkin Seed Oil
Key Benefits: Skin that is ultra soft and luxurious feeling
Transform your skin with our aloe rich white tea and ginger organic body lotion and you'll soon discover how silky smooth your skin will become.
Organic AloeBarbadensis Leaf Juice (Aloe Vera) Organic Equisetum Arvense (Horsetail Plant), Organic Pelagonium Graveolens (Geranium), Organic Symphtum Officinale (Comfrey), and Organic Taraxacum Officinale (Dandelion) Sweet Almond Oil (Prunus Amygdalus) Palm Oil, Stearic Acid, Cetyl Alcohol, Dimethicone, Carbomer, Sodium Hydroxide, Allantoin, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba Oil), Shea Butter ( Wildcrafted Butyrospermum Parkii), Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Retinyl Palmitate (Vitamin A), Phenoexthanol, White Tea & Ginger botanical fragrance
Travel size candles make great gifts for any occasion. Best of all they are easy to pack and take with you on your travels.
Our new Fig candle scent begins with a top note of citrus and bergamot. The heart is a fruity blend of berry, apple, and pomegranate with a lingering scent of a rich woody warm bouquet.
And this is just a very small sampling of the products Eclipse Spa has to offer! During my Mad About Mama event, Michele is offering 1 very, very lucky follower 3 of these wonderful products to try for themselves! Just imagine... With these great products you can lock the bathroom door, leave the kids in your husband's care, and just relax.... Let's face it, as busy moms, we don't get many opportunities to do that!
So a HUGE thank you to Michele at Miki's Hope for sponsoring! I am so excited about these products, and about Michele's blog, Miki's Hope. I know you all are, too, so I am offering some early extra entries into the upcoming giveaway! Each task is worth 5 extra entries, and I WILL be verifying these entries with Michele, so please be honest. Leave your entry comments here, and there will be further instructions on how to redeem them during my Mad About Mama giveaway!
EARLY EXTRA ENTRIES:
Okay...I know that some of you must be thinking I am crazy for including cloth diapering accessories in my Mad About Mama event. You're probably thinking, "Isn't Mother's Day about the MOM, not the baby?" Well, yes. Yes, it is. BUT... I know a lot of you are probably jumping for joy over a fluff giveaway, because you know and understand one strange commonality among cloth-diapering mamas: Cloth diapers are addictive. They are probably as addictive as heroin. (Not that I have ANY experience with heroin. I do not,lol) I know in my case, at least, if the ONLY thing I received for Mother's Day were cloth diapers and accessories, I would be absolutely ecstatic! Over the moon, to be exact. There is nothing better than seeing my babies with cute little fluff-butts. And the variety of colors, prints and fabrics available are simply intoxicating. I am actually guilty of coordinating entire outfits around what diapers my babies happen to be wearing that day. Am I obsessed? Yeah, probably. But many of you are, too!
That's why I am super-excited to announce my next Mad About Mama sponsor, Zookies Diaper Covers & More. Zookies is a WAHM run shop that carries the absolute cutest diaper covers I have ever seen! There are so many adorable fabric choices that I had a very difficult time choosing one for my review. I am not going to spill the beans now, since it would ruin my review post, but I WILL say that I spent over an hour looking at all the adorable possibilities before I finally settled on a cute, gender neutral print. With 2 babies, a girl and a boy, it just made sense. As much as I LOVED all of the feminine, girly prints that Zookies has to offer, I just could not justify eventually sticking Xander in a girl's diaper cover. The thought DID cross my mind, though, if only for a very brief moment!
These waterproof diaper covers fit over any prefold or fitted diaper. They are lined with PUL and feature a fun outer cotton shell. Soft fold over elastic binds the layers. A double row of snaps or hook and loop closure is available.
Just take a look at some of my personal favorites from Zookies!
Aren't these fantastic? And this is just a very small sampling of what Zookies has to offer! Not only do they carry these awesome diaper covers, they also carry bibs, burp cloths, reusable snack bags, and other goodies that are sure to please any mama!
And the BEST news of all is that Michele Zook, owner of Zookies, has been very generous and will be offering one of my readers a diaper cover of their choice during my Mad About Mama event!
But as always, good things come to those who wait. And while April is creeping up on us, we're not quite there yet. So you'll have to wait until the launch of Mad About Mama for my review and unveiling of my Zookies cover, and for this amazing giveaway!
In the meantime, you can check out Zookies for yourself at:
For those of you fluff-addicts that want an early advantage, there are some extra entries you can snag right here, right now!
I will keep this simple. Leave your comments here, and there will be instructions on how to redeem them once the official giveaway starts. PLEASE leave a VALID e-mail address with your entry!
Early Extra Entry:
I have an anniversary coming up on April 5th, so I have been looking for things that Dan and I could do together that are fun, promote intimacy, and don't necessarily kill the budget. I was very excited when I noticed the Goodnight Sweetheart Couples Edition game being featured on several other blogs. Naturally, I was ecstatic when I won a copy of my own from one of my favorite blogs. I was even MORE excited when the nice folks at Goodnight Sweetheart told me that they would love to extend the giveaway to one of my lucky readers, as well.
Dan and I have played several couple's games before. Some of them mild, some of them wild. While many of them were fun, some were just so incredibly cheesy that it took away from the whole point of the game: Connecting with your partner in a positive way. I guess sitting there giggling saying "Are you KIDDING me?!" is a form of bonding, but I'm sure it's not what the manufacturers of certain games intended,lol...
So when I received my Goodnight Sweetheart Couples Edition game, I was interested to see how it compared to other games we have played. The first thing I noticed was the beautiful box that the cards come in, complete with a satiny ribbon to tie it shut with. Oh, and I would like to mention that the ribbon is attached to the box, which is a nice touch in my opinion. It makes it very easy to simply tie a bow without having to make sure that the ribbon is properly centered on the box, etc. The box is actually so aesthetically pleasing that this game can easily be left out on a coffee table or shelf and will enhance the decor of the room! I love that, since I hate having to dig through our game closet to find a game to play. This is easy to keep at arms reach for easy play.
So after admiring the gorgeous little package, it was time to play the game. Goodnight Sweetheart comes with very easy to understand instructions, and there are a couple of different ways to play the game. There is a short version which is a wonderful, quick way to have a "feel good moment" with your partner before turning in for the evening, and there is a longer version which can be played like a standard game. We played the long version initially. The game consists of different types of cards: Sweetheart Cards, Action Cards, Sharing Cards, and Wild Cards.
The object of the game is blessedly simple, which is great for sleep-deprived parents like us! You simply separate the Sharing Cards from the rest of the deck, and set them aside. Next you take turns following the instructions on the rest of the deck. And you know the Cheese Factor I complained about regarding other couple's games? Not the case with Goodnight Sweetheart Couples Edition! The questions and actions on the cards are actually well thought-out and definitely promote intimacy by delving deeper into a relationship and reminding each other of the many reasons you fell in love to begin with. After being with someone for years, it's all too easy to forget to remind that special someone that they are still loved. Sure, anyone can say "I love you", but sometimes a little more than that is nice. This game allows you to express WHY you love your partner, and why you are proud to be with them. It definitely helps a couple stay connected on an emotional level, but it also encourages positive, physical interactions as well. The action cards include a lot of kissing! (I am a big fan of kisses, FYI!)
We really enjoyed playing Goodnight Sweetheart Couples Edition. It definitely left us smiling, feeling closer, with that warm fuzzy feeling. We plan to play the game as part of our daily routine. It's so easy, and all it takes (for the short version) is 2 cards, 2 minutes, and 2 willing participants! I have to say I am impressed by this product, as it is a couple's game that actually does what is intended. This game is one of the BEST couple's games I have played to date.
Goodnight Sweetheart also offers other versions, like Goodnight Sweetheart for kids, teens, and tweens! What an awesome way to nurture the family relationships that mean the most to us! Want a copy of your own? (I know you do!)
You can purchase your own copy of Goodnight Sweetheart Couples Edition (or one of their other wonderful products) at their website.
But...Goodnight Sweetheart would like to spread the love by offering one of my readers their very own copy of the Goodnight Sweetheart Couples Edition! How cool is that!?
Here are the rules. Please complete the mandatory entry FIRST, and leave a VALID e-mail address in your comment. I have had to re-draw winners a couple of times due to lack of e-mail address. Please leave a separate entry for each comment. If an entry is worth +2, leave 2 comments so all of your entries count!
This giveaway will end on 4/06 at 11:59 PM, and is open to US residents 18+. Winner will be chosen using random.org and will be posted here and notified by e-mail. Winner will then have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen. Good luck!
***Disclosure: I received a product from Goodnight Sweetheart to facilitate my review. No other compensation was provided, and my opinions are 100% honest and my own.***
Show of hands, please! How many of you have made a New Year's resolution to start eating healthier? Maybe you'd like to shed a few pounds after spending too much time eating yummy (and fattening) Holiday goodies? Or maybe, if you're like me, you spent the past 2 years being pregnant and would like a little help getting rid of that stubborn belly pooch! And to those mamas who escaped the dreaded, after-baby belly-pooch, I am officially JEALOUS! Tell me your secret, and I will love you forever!
Anyway, March is National Nutrition Month, and one wonderful way you can celebrate a new, healthier family is to check out Yoplait yogurts! I personally LOVE Yoplait because they have such a wide variety of flavors, such as Key Lime Pie, Mountain Blueberry, and Strawberry Cheesecake! They also have a TON of other products, like Yoplait Whips, Fiber One, Greek Yogurts (great for cooking!) and even Yoplait Smoothies. And I'm sure all of you moms are familiar with Go-Gurt and Yoplait Kids! My kids LOVE yogurt, especially Go-Gurt. Did you know you can stick tubes of Go-Gurt into the freezer for a yummy frozen yogurt treat? Now THAT is a snack I can feel good about giving to my children. Also, Yoplait yogurts are packed full of flavor! They are rich and fruity, and taste like a guilty pleasure, even though they are excellent sources of vitamins A and D, as well as calcium. Who says yogurt can't be mouth-wateringly delicious?
Here are a few ways to help celebrate National Nutrition Month by getting your snack on with Yoplait:
**Yoplait kids has 9 grams of sugar per 3oz. the leading kids' yogurt has 13 grams of sugar per 3oz.
Support National Nutrition Month and become a fan of Yoplait on Facebook today to explore delicious and easy ways to infuse more nutrition into your lifestyle. They often have special offers for their Facebook fans, as well as tips, recipes, and nutritional info.
Disclosure: I am posting this information provided by Yoplait as part of a blogging campain from Yoplait and MyBlogSpark. In doing so, I am entered to win a Yoplait prize pack. No other compensation was provided, and my opinions, as always, are my own and have not been influenced in any way.
So from about 8:00 AM till about 20 minutes ago, my phone, internet, and fios all went down. For some unexplained reason. I even double checked to make sure I paid that bill, and rather than owing, we actually have a credit with our provider. So that wasn't the issue...
Anyway, I have NO idea what caused the outage, but it means I now have over 1500 e-mails I need to go through, as well as trying to start on the posts I was GOING to post earlier today. So I have a lot to catch up on!
I never realized how taken for granted basic services like phone, cable, and the net were until today. I am so glad it's back on! Thank God for the babies and the blu-ray player. Without them, I would have gone mad with boredom. Even if it DID mean watching Your Baby Can Read 15 MILLION times.....
Yay! Finally a blog hop after my own heart! One that by participating, lowers your Alexa ranking! I am always keeping an eye on my Alexa, since Google Page Rank is never updated, and isn't at all accurate....
Hop on over to Real Mom Reviews and sign up! But make sure you have the Alexa toolbar installed!
As you all can probably tell by now, this mama loves her beauty products! I am an odd combination of Tom-Boy meets Girly-Girl. I can hang with the guys, crack jokes, and get my hands dirty with the best of them. But at the end of the day, I love to unwind, relax, and pamper myself with products that make me feel beautiful. An essential part of beauty is skin care. No make-up is going to do its job to the best of its abilities if it's "painting" on a damaged canvas. And think about it: Your skin IS your canvas. It is the one thing that will be with you for the rest of your life, so you might as well take the best possible care of it. In recent years especially, women have become increasingly conscious of the way we treat our skin. For example, I use a high quality sun-screen year round to protect my skin from harmful UVA/UVB rays. (Yes, you can acquire irreparable skin damage in the winter!) I also opt to use self-tanners rather than slather on the tanning oil and bake myself in the sun. I tan beautifully and do not burn, but I know just how harmful tanning can be. Not only are there the dangers of melanoma, excessive sun exposure also causes premature aging and leathery skin. And what good is a tan if your skin looks like beef jerky?
Another thing that women have become increasingly aware of when it comes to skin care are the ingredients that go into the products they choose to buy. There are soooo many products out there claiming to have state of the art anti-aging skin protection, but have you LOOKED at the labels on these products? Chances are, they're chock full of ingredients you cannot even pronounce. And unless it's a scientific name used to classify a product, often used for common plant-derived ingredients, like Simmondsia chinensis (Jojoba) seed oil, chances are those ingredients are chemical-laden and are NOT providing ideal nourishment for your skin.
Your skin is a living, breathing organ. Yes, you read that correctly. Skin BREATHES. So many products contain harsh ingredients, like petroleum, mineral oils, chemicals, or parabens, that do not allow the skin to breathe. Who knew that something so commonly used in the products we buy everyday could actually be harmful to the skin? Well, breakthrough discoveries within the skin-care world have proven this to be the case. It DOES matter what we put on our skin, as what we use daily has an accumulative effect. So with so many options for skin care, how can we ensure that we're choosing the right kind of nourishment for our skin?
Allow me to introduce our next sponsor for my Mad About Mama event: Pelle Beauty. (FYI: Pelle is Italian for skin, and the beauty and culture of Italy is the inspiration for Pelle Beauty!) Pelle Beauty was created by Marnie Cipriani, who worked for 2 decades in the beauty industry as a make-up artist. Marnie is passionate about skin, and understands that if your skin glows, you glow, too. How is this achieved? Through creating products using less fillers and chemicals, and more naturally derived, quality ingredients. This is why Marnie created Pelle Beauty. She wanted to provide a line of products that provides the skin with the nourishment it craves, using natural essential oils and skin safe fragrances. All of Pelle Beauty's products are designed with YOU in mind. There are several options available that address different skin types and concerns. And all of these products contain pure and natural ingredients. As a matter of fact, Marnie at Pelle Beauty is so passionate about women being 100% aware of what we use on our skin, every product she creates has a full list of ingredients. I dare you to find anything harmful in any of Pelle Beauty's products. You won't be able to, because skin LOVES Pelle Beauty!
For my event, one lucky winner will receive 2 fabulous, best selling products from Pelle Beauty. I don't want to spoil the surprise completely, but 1 of those products is their Pelle Infusions. (Which I LOVE, by the way! It literally makes me feel like I just got pampered at a spa!) Here is Marnie Cipriani, founder of Pelle Beauty, talking about Pelle Infusions. Pay attention, ladies, as watching this video may just earn you some extra entries into the giveaway this April!
So are you excited about Pelle Beauty yet? I am! I will be posting my official review of their amazing products during my Mad About Mama event coming in April, as well as an amazing giveaway so stay tuned!
For those super-smart mamas that would love an early advantage come giveaway time, here is your chance to earn extra entries! Please leave your extra entry comments here on this post, as instructions on how to redeem them will be provided during the giveaway.
*** For more extra entries into other Mad About Mama giveaways, please put the term "Sponsor Spotlight" into my search bar so you don't miss out on all the great opportunities I have to get an early advantage!***
Here are the rules. I will keep it simple for you:
ATTENTION ALL LOVERS OF SARCASM: What do you wear when you want to make a statement yet still be nice and comfy? Well, a t-shirt from Snorg Tees, of course! I have seen Snorg Tees reviewed all over the blogosphere, and I am a big fan of the witty and unique designs they offer.
They have something for everyone, from manly men to women, to the "man child" in your life (they have some pretty amusing old-school Mario design tees) , and even for those science nerds out there. I recently was sent one of their tees for review. I wanted to choose the "I Have The Body Of A God" shirt to commemorate my after baby body, but my husband, the Couch Potato, fell in love with the following tee, and I decided to be nice and request it, instead. Hey, gotta give the man what he wants once in awhile,lol... He loves the feel of the shirt, and he loves that it says what he is thinking once the work uniform comes off. Call it a one-man picket line in protest of household chores!
I have to admit, I don't like the above statement, as it just encourages him to procrastinate, and he's pretty much got that down to a science already! But I DO have to say that the quality of the tee is very good. It isn't one of those starchy, scratchy feeling tees that are so common nowadays. The cotton in Snorg Tees is very soft and feels great against the skin. It almost has a "vintage tee" feel...Like it has been washed and worn-in to achieve that super comfy feel we all love so much.
Snorg Tees offer HUNDREDS of designs, too, in many different categories. Here are some of my favorites:
Aren't those adorable? I know I love them! Snorg Tees offer very well made, high quality tee shirts that have a bit of attitude to them. They run true to size, and are amazingly comfortable. Their tees would make perfect gifts for students, husbands or boyfriends, and even for the mama with spunk! I am very impressed by Snorg Tees, and was thrilled to get the opportunity to work with them. The customer service is also very good, and my shirt arrived quickly and very well packaged. I plan to shop with Snorg Tees any time I need a unique gift for the person who seems to have everything. Trust me. They have SO many design options, you can't miss! And the best part? One of my lucky readers will get a Snorg Tee of their choice, courtesy of the awesome folks at Snorg Tees!
How do you enter? Simple! Follow these instructions. Remember, the mandatory entry MUST be fulfilled for ANY of the extra entries to count. Also, please be sure to leave a valid e-mail address in every comment, so I can contact you if you win!
Disclosure: I received a product from Snorg Tees to facilitate my review. No other compensation was provided. My opinions are 100% honest and have not been influenced in any way.
PR Friendly Mama!
I'm Brandy, a happily married, proud mama of two munchkins and a teen. You can read more about me HERE. If you're interested in building a working relationship, please feel free to e-mail me at: NewlyCrunchyMamaOf3@gmail.com
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