Is everyone ready for the Holidays?! I know I am! My kids all have about a zillion presents, I have begun decorating, and I am putting our trees up within the next couple of days. I even have the perfect little Mrs. Clause outfit for my Yorkie, Trouble! (Yes, I will dress my puppies up for special occasions. Don't hate!)
PetSmart, my favorite pet store in the whole wide world, has a huge selection of adorable, Holiday pet apparel ranging from classic designs like elves and Santa to wilder designs like the Bret Michaels line and even the Grinch! There are costumes for pets of all sizes, from the tiniest of tea-cup pets to HUGE doggies like Great Danes and Newfies. (And everything in between, of course!) I don't like cats one little bit, but even their cat costumes had me saying "Awww!"
Check out just a few of my absolute favorite designs from PetSmart's Holiday pet apparel selection:
Who here has seen Monsters, Inc.? I know we're all raising our hands here. As a matter of fact, when my oldest child was small, he insisted on seeing the movie over and over....and over again for months. So I can proudly say I have the movie pretty much memorized!
Did you know that there's a NEW movie coming out this summer featuring the lovable characters from Monsters, Inc.? It's true, and I cannot wait to see it! This movie takes us back in time to show how Sully and Mike became the inseparable pair they are today!
Mike Wazowski and James P. Sullivan are an inseparable pair, but that wasn’t always the case. From the moment these two mismatched monsters met they couldn't stand each other. “Monsters University” unlocks the door to how Mike and Sulley overcame their differences and became the best of friends.Screaming with laughter and fun, “Monsters University” is directed by Dan Scanlon (“Cars,” “Mater and the Ghostlight,” “Tracy”) and produced by Kori Rae (“Up,” “The Incredibles,” “Monsters, Inc.”).
The film opens in U.S. theaters on June 21, 2013, and will be shown in Disney Digital 3D™ in select theaters.
Like MONSTERS UNIVERSITY on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/PixarMonstersUniversity
MONSTERS UNIVERSITY arrives in theatres everywhere on June 21, 2013!
REMEMBER! Tickets are now on sale for MONSTERS, INC. 3D which opens everywhere on Wednesday, December 19th!
As the proud mama of 2 toddlers, I love being able to dress my kids up all cute, and I get excited when I find new products that allow me to do just that. (I have a teen, too, but sadly, he is way past the stage of letting his mother pick out his wardrobe.)
If you're anything like me, you love finding fun, unique clothing and accessories for your little ones. My kids have huge wardrobes that consist of everything from vintage inspired clothing to punk-rock styled gear, as well as a ton of great shoes, hats and even baby legwarmers in trendy colors and prints.
I adore fashion, and love passing this love on to my kids. My diva...oops, I mean daughter Sophie especially. She loves picking out her own outfits, and she is always very proud of herself for coming up with new and exciting looks. Or rather odd ones like you see to the left. But apparently, Sophie thinks that a wool winter hat is a perfectly chic indoor accessory.
So naturally, I was thrilled when I discovered a brand new line of children's shoes from a company called Bailey Berry. Not only are these shoes absolutely adorable, they're also customizable! That's right, you can change up the look of your kids shoes by changing the straps! Each pair of BB Stars, Bailey Berry's exclusive line of shoes, comes with 2 sets of straps. They've got fun designs on both sides, so you get a total of 4 different looks out of each pair of shoes. Unless, of course, you choose to switch them up a bit. Then you'll get more looks! Mix, match...It doesn't matter! Bailey Berry is all about making fashion fun for little ones.
BB Stars come in a nice variety of colors and sizes, most of which are wonderfully unisex. This is a huge plus for me since I have both a little boy and a little girl, not too far apart in age!
Check out how stinkin' cute these shoes are:
You may recall that last week, I talked about how much I love Vitacost. This online retailer carries only the best health, wellness, and beauty products from big name brands like Jason, Kiss My Face, and more, all at amazing savings.
Vitacost.com offers savings up to 50% off retail on the healthy products you want and need, including vitamins, supplements, health foods, sports nutrition products, bath & beauty favorites, even home and pet products.
Vitacost.com carries more than 35,000 different healthy products. OK, so that’s not really endless, but it sure seems that way. Those products come from nearly 2,000 leading brands, including high-quality Vitacost brand products.
I know I will be getting a lot of Holiday gifts and stocking stuffers at Vitacost this year. Not only is shopping there worry-free, it's also incredibly convenient since I never have to deal with traffic, jam-packed parking lots, or hordes of frazzled shoppers. I don't have to even get out of my favorite footie pajamas, and I can shop at 2:00AM if I feel like it. No more dragging my toddlers out for hours of shopping for my favorite healthy living products, because Vitacost has me covered.
Customers can also enjoy FREE shipping on orders over $49 within the contiguous U.S.! For other orders within the 48 states, shipping is just $4.99. It just doesn't get any better than that!
Just in time for the Holidays, the awesome folks at Vitacost are offering a fantastic giveaway right here on Newly Crunchy Mama Of 3! This Isvara Organics beauty basket is loaded with luxurious, spa-worthy products that are sure to make that special lady in your life feel pampered and spoiled.
Check out the products included in this amazing prize package:
My kids love to play together...Okay, when they're not trying to kill each other, as many siblings do. In all seriousness, Sophie and Xander are the best of friends and enjoy doing things together. Whether they're building with blocks, playing with their electronic toys, or simply coloring, my toddlers are pretty much attached at the hip. It probably helps that they're a mere 12 months apart in age.
I have noticed that their favorite thing to do together is artwork. They love playing with moldable dough, paints, crayons, markers, and anything else that allows them to be creative. While I love seeing their artistic sides, this can be a bit messy, considering small children often get paint or market on things that aren't meant to be part of the art projects, like the carpet, walls, or furniture.
Recently, I discovered a great new artistic toy called the Magna Color 3D. With the Magna Color, there is no worry about the mess often associated with children's art projects. This may give away my age, but the Magna Color reminds me of a cross between one of my favorite childhood toys, the Lite Brite, and a Magna Doodle. This innovative toy allows kids to create beautiful, 3D pictures using small, colorful metal dots that are housed in color-coded "pens". The unique magic dot pens allow children to place the 3-D dots to color in the stencil design by either creating a single spot or make trails of multiple dots by running the pen across the magnetic screen.
Who here has a sports lover in their home? I know I do....A whole houseful, to be exact! We are HUGE football fans, but I also love basketball. I have since I was a little girl going to see the Cleveland Cavs play. (Yeah...I know...Cleveland teams aren't so good.)
Well just in time for the Holidays, I have a great giveaway that's sure to please any sports fanatic out there! Thunderstruck, starring Kevin Durant, will be available for purchase on December 4th.
NBA superstar Kevin Durant plays himself in this action-packed family film about a basketball star who switches talent with a klutzy 16-year-old fan. When Brian (Taylor Gray) magically switches basketball skills with his hero, Kevin Durant, he becomes the star of his high school team... while Kevin Durant suddenly can’t make a shot to save his life! But with the playoffs approaching, Brian learns that being a true winner means working hard at your own game, and he tries to make things right in time to prevent a catastrophic end to his hero’s season.
I have been blogging for almost 3 years now, and had never really been on any blog-related trips until recently. As a matter of fact, all of my trips have been very, very recent. I went to sunny California for a Disney event in September, and earlier this month I visited the Big Apple for an Excedrin Migraine event. Tomorrow, I will be flying to Chicago and then off to gorgeous St. Joseph's/Benton Harbor, Michigan for my "Real Whirled" experience for Whirlpool/Maytag.
Now anyone who knows me knows I am terrified of flying. I just can't seem to get used to it! Before any trip, I experience some anxiety. Last night, I had a dream that my plane crashed. It was one of those vivid, freaky dreams that leaves your heart pounding, and you wake in a cold sweat. It actually took me over an hour to fall back asleep!
As I was tossing and turning, I realized my husband and I don't have life insurance...You know...In case the unthinkable happens. I started worrying about what would happen to the kids, and what security would be left for my family if something happened to me or Dan. Sure, our house is paid for, but there are always other expenses that will need to be paid, like funeral expenses, medical bills, and home repairs. I know that if something happened to my husband, I wouldn't be able to afford these things on my own.
So today, I will be researching our options as far as obtaining some form of life insurance for both of us. Yeah, I know. I worry too darn much.We're young, and my plane more than likely will not burst into flames mid-air. (I'm cringing just thinking about it!) But you never really know what could happen, and it's better to be safe than sorry. I want my kids to have some security for their futures...Just in case.
Now I am off to get packed for my trip to The Windy City! I know I will have a ton to share with you all when I get back! I am really excited to meet the Whirlpool/Maytag folks and learn more about the brand. I'll also get to meet some other bloggers!
Have you talked about getting life insurance? Do you have any tips you can share when searching for the right policy? I'd love to hear your thoughts!
***Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. However, all opinions are 100% mine and have not been influenced in any way.***
Cooking for (and with!) kids can be challenging. After all, little people tend to have very clear ideas on what they want to eat and of course, what they think is "icky". When I was little, I wouldn't eat eggs, seafood, onions, peppers, and the list goes on and on and on...Unfortunately, I am only a tiny bit better about my picky eating habits as an adult!
Thankfully, my kids have pretty broad palates and happen to love their vegetables. But have you ever noticed that plain old veggies tend to get a bit ho-hum at times? A bowl full of vegetables on their own come across as pretty uninspiring. While kids may eat and even enjoy them, they generally don't get genuinely excited about them.
There are tons of great ways to jazz up seemingly ordinary vegetables by adding them to creative, kid-friendly recipes. You see, veggies don't have to simply be a side dish...They can easily be transformed into the main attraction!
I recently stumbled upon the Birds Eye Kids website, and there I found a bunch of recipes designed specifically for the pickiest of eaters: Kids!
Whew! The past few days here have been very out of the ordinary, to say the least! First there was all of the Thanksgiving hustle and bustle...Then, the next morning, we realized we had a very mischievous little visitor, straight from the North Pole! Yep...We've been experiencing our own special Elf Magic here!
You see, in early November, Kyle helped Sophie and Xander write a letter to Santa, asking if he'd "please, please, please, with a cherry on top" send one of his best elves to visit and help our family get ready for the Holiday season. We sent our letter off with the help from the Polar Express, and honestly, I forgot all about it. (Mommy FAIL!)
The day after Thanksgiving, our whole family awoke to quite a shock....First we found a little note from Ella, one of Santa's most beautiful and playful elves. She let us know that she would be hiding here and there and everywhere, and part of the fun of Christmas would be seeing where she'd turn up next!
So we began hunting for Ella. After all, we had never met a real live elf before, and we were all excited to make her acquaintance. We looked high and low, and finally found Ella peeking out from inside my Winnie the Pooh cookie jar!
They say elves only come out to create mischief at night. However, I don't think Ella got that memo! She turns up both during the day and at night...We never know what she's been up to or where we might find her next!
Here are just a few of Ella's recent antics. I guess when request a mischievous elf to pay a visit, sometimes you get exactly what you asked for!
My soon-to-be 13 year old, Kyle, is really hard to shop for. Around Christmas time, I always panic when thinking about what to get for him. You see, he often says he's "too old" for most toys, and he seems to want things that are completely unrealistic like an iPad or laptop. (I tell him to start saving his money or get a job mowing lawns when he starts asking for high dollar items that Mommy doesn't even have!)
Kyle is also not into a lot of the things that most boys his age are. He doesn't really enjoy sports, and he isn't into a lot of video games. Sure, he will play them, but not with any regularity. I suppose I should be grateful for this, since my 35 year old husband can't seem to get enough of these things!
Kyle is a very hands-on, artistic, and creative kid. He loves drawing, painting, and building things. When he was only 4, he built a very precise replica of the Titanic, complete with decks, stairs, and even smoke-stacks, out of popsicle sticks. It was pretty amazing, actually! So now that he's older, I am always on the lookout for stimulating products that help to being out his creative side.
So naturally, when I discovered the great building kits from Zometool, I knew I had hit a home run! Zometool kits are wildly popular overseas in places like Germany and Japan, and they're rapidly gaining momentum here in the United States. What makes these kits so neat? Well, they combine art, science, and math to creative ingenious designs.In fact, many great scientists have already tinkered with these smart building kits.
For kids that may be intrigued by science, architecture, art or engineering, in fact, anyone on that holiday list who likes to ponder with hands-on engagement (without using a hand-held gadget), six friendly but profound Zometool kits are recommended. All sets are made to high quality standards in the company’s wind powered Longmont, CO factory.
The quality and addictive fun were noticed this year by several prestigious award organizations. Dr. Toy named Creator 3 and Ice Crystals & Stars her 2012 Best Picks Winners. Creative Child Awards gave Creator 1 its 2012 Top Toy of the Year Award in the Build Construction Category and 2012 Kids Product of the Year Award in the Kids Educational Product Category. And since the kits are made in Colorado, they were inducted into the Made in the USA Hall of Fame by the Made in the USA Foundation.
PR Friendly Mama!
I'm Brandy, a happily married, proud Mom of 3 amazing kids. If you're interested in building a working relationship, please feel free to e-mail me at: NewlyCrunchyMamaOf3@gmail.com
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