Saturday, April 30, 2011


It's kind of ironic that I'm finally motivated to write a post about how unmotivated I've been. I've been really uncomfortable this pregnancy, especially these past few weeks, and I still have 7 weeks to go! Blah! Is it possible for the post partum depression to start now???
It's honestly a struggle some days to just get through the day and accomplish basic tasks like cooking (oh, don't get me started on how much I've come to dread making dinner!), laundry (I HATE my washer!!!!!), and bathing my daughter (getting more and more difficult to lean over the tub and get up from the floor). I also have difficulty balancing and managing my time. I feel guilty if I'm cleaning and doing household chores because I feel like I'm neglecting my daughter. Then, if I'm interacting with her I feel like I'm neglecting the house. I know there is a proper balance, I just have to get over it in my head and just do it.

I have a husband who works his butt off at his job in order to provide for us and so that I can stay home with Emma. He's also a really great, interactive father who is genuinely concerned with the development of our daughter. But, he's not the neatest of people and that makes for a lot of extra work for me. It's been difficult to get him to pitch in a little more since basic things, like doing dishes (darn belly gets in the way of everything) are getting harder and harder to accomplish. It was really nice of him to take her to the Children's Museum this morning so that I could have "a break", but the huge mess left in the kitchen makes it hard for me to relax.

There are so many things I could complain about but that wouldn't be very fun to read, so instead, I'll TRY to write about some positive things.

There has been some progress in getting the baby's (who now has name, Owen) room together. Of course there's still more to do, there always is, but it's nice to be able to walk in there and have space to sit down and sort through clothes and toys.

I won a totally cute, custom made diaper from Doodle Dypes (review coming soon), and the owner, Sandy was nice enough to throw in an extra, newborn diaper for Owen. Awesome! These diapers are so cute and I can't wait until I can put the matching diapers on Emma and Owen.

I have a mentor through a group at church and she's been really great at challenging me to think critically about faith issues. This is something that I've needed for a long time! I really look forward to meeting with her (and not just because I get to go to Starbucks for adult-only time) because she is so kind, caring and knows the Bible better than I do! I think everyone needs a Biblically more mature mentor on their side!

I finally made an appointment with a therapist who specialized in traumatic birth and pre and post natal counselling. Hopefully, now, I can work through the negative feelings I still have from Emma's birth process and find some confidence so I can have a successful VBAC this time. Oh how I want that more than anything IN THE WORLD!!!!

All that being said: I really do have to thank God for a roof over my head, food on the table, a great family and healthy pregnancy and all the other extra things I have that a lot of people don't.

Oh, and I do have a few giveaways coming up. I just have to get up the motivation to get them done, let's hope this is the start of a roll.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Skin MD Review and Giveaway

I was so thrilled when Skin MD Natural contacted me and asked me to do a review of their skin care items. You'd be hard pressed to find a negative review of this stuff! I had never had a problem with eczema before last winter and it hit hard. It was all over my hands and forearms, so itchy and irritating. Nothing I tried was working to make it better, until I found Skin MD Natural Shielding Lotion. This stuff truly is amazing!!

[From the manufacturers website]
A shielding lotion does the real work to prevent dry skin in two ways.

First, it assists the inner layers of skin to absorb moisture. The humectant (an ingredient that attracts moisture) used in Skin MD Natural is unique to it and has been laboratory tested to be 6 times more effective than any other you will find in common creams.

Second, a shielding lotion enhances the power of the top layer of the skin to resist environmental irritants while protecting the inner natural moisture.

This can be a big benefit for those who cook, wash dishes and garden because Skin MD Natural helps skin retain its natural moisture and oils in the face of all those irritating soaps and chemicals. has hundreds of dermatologist and user reviews including many addressing severe dry skin problems such as eczema and psoriasis. People with sensitive skin -- and those of us who like to live as naturally as possible -- will appreciate that Skin MD Natural is hypoallergenic, free of fragrances, parabens and colorants. It is made with more than 90% natural ingredients and 100% food-grade ingredients that are on the FDA's "most safe" list.

I'm not having as much of a problem with eczema this year (my midwife swears it's due to the fish oil supplement that I'm taking), but HOLY COW, do I have dry skin!!! I'm sure most of you mothers can relate to washing your hands a million times/day as I do. I really love that Skin MD is a natural product that works by strengthening your skin's own defenses and not just coating you with greasy film. It's super soft and silky. And, the best part is, it works!

I did notice a weird little red patch on the back of my daughter's knee and thought I would try the Skin MD on it. I think it might be psoriasis, but I'm not sure, anyway, here are the results:



You can see that it's much less red, splotchy and angry looking. And this is only after a couple applications of Skin MD. I'm confident that with regular use, it'll totally clear up. I'm picky about the type of skincare products that I use on my daughter and I love that there are no artificial or weird chemical ingredients in Skin MD, I wouldn't even think twice about putting it on my daughter! Oh, one more thing to LOVE: Skin MD Natural is made in the US, using 100% solar power, without animal ingredients and it is not tested on animals. How many skincare products can claim that?

You can buy Skin MD natural from their website or select retailers.


Skin MD Natural is generously offering one of my readers a full size bottle of Skin MD Natural Shielding lotion!

How to enter:
Each action counts as one entry unless otherwise stated. Leave a separate comment for each entry and please include your email address. You must complete the mandatory entry before you are eligible for any other entries.

**Mandatory Entry**
Visit the Skin MD website and tell me something else about their amazing products not mentioned here. There is lots of information!

Extra Entries:
*like Skin MD on Facebook
*like Skin MD on Twitter
*sign up for the Skin MD mailing list
*Follow me publicly through google friend connect-counts as 3 entries! Leave 3 separate comments.
*Subscribe to my blog by email, through feedburner-counts as 3 entries!
*Grab my button and tell me where it is posted
*Blog about this giveaway, link back to my site and leave me the URL of your blog
*NEW!!! Like my brand new Facebook page- counts as 5 entries!!!!

The fine print:
This giveaway is open worldwide and will end April 26, 2011 at 9PM pacific time.
Winner will be chosen by and contacted by e-mail, then must respond within 48 hours or else a new winner will be chosen.
I was not paid for this review, and received no compensation. I was provided samples of the product mentioned for review purposes. All opinions expressed are my own and completely truthful.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Thank God for an ear infection!!!

Seriously, I really mean it!

To say that the last week has been looooooong would be an extreme understatement! Emma woke up last Sunday with a slight fever and acting sick, so we stayed home from church and rested. I had a little cough, but no other symptoms so I thought it was just allergies. I started feeling worse and worse and was at the on-call doctor by Monday night, he diagnosed me with bronchitis. I wouldn't have even gone to the doctor, but I am 26 weeks pregnant and had just been around a neighbor who had bronchitis and I just didn't want to take a chance that the cough would turn into pneumonia or something harmful to the baby.

So I spent two whole days in bed. Luckily, my husband was able to use sick time to stay home and take care of Emma while I rested. While Cirt is an excellent, attentive father, he's not the best multitasker and wasn't really able to take of Emma and the household chores at the same time. When I came out of the bedroom after two days, the house was a bomb and hubby was saying that he felt sick, fantastic! Plus, now Emma was saying she felt "ick".

Cirt stayed home for the rest of the week and then Emma came down with a fever on Thursday night. She spent the next three days on the couch watching Clifford. She had a fever, which hoovered around 101/102, slight cough, and congestion. The most worrisome thing, however, is that she wouldn't eat, play, smile, hardly moved or talked, she just wasn't herself!!! So heartbreaking!! I knew she had a sore throat, too, because she would cough and then whine or cry. She wasn't sleeping well and didn't want to do anything!

I know some people would've run to the doctor right away, but I was trying not to be that mom (not that it's necessarily bad). I just felt that the fever meant she was fighting a virus or something and I should just let her body do it's thing, making sure she had rest and fluids. I usually just gave her Tylenol or ibuprofen at bedtime so she could sleep better. Our bodies are designed to heal themselves, after all, as long as everything is aligned and working properly. She's normally a really healthy little girl.

Finally, finally after 3 days of her just laying around she woke up Monday morning and didn't feel hot! She was really weak from not eating and kind of stumbled around when she tried to walk, but at least she was up, moving, doing puzzles and she actually ate 1/4 of a peanut butter sandwich and some crackers for lunch, wahoo! I thought she was on the mend. But, then she took a 3.5 hour nap, woke up crying and when I went in to get her she was completely burning up, whining again and didn't want to move. I took her temp. It was 104 degrees and I was scared! I finally decided to take her to the doctor. By this time, however, our regular doctor's office was closed so we had to go to the walk-in clinic.

When my husband got home from work, we bundled up our little girl, took her out in the rain and sat in that darn clinic for 2 hours with a hot, whiny, sore, sleepy, sick little girl. She was saying things like: "I'm feeling bad." "go home now". "need to go to doctor." When we FINALLY got to see a doctor, he took one look in her ear and said: "There it is, she's got a raging ear infection!" He let me look through the ottoscope (is that what it's called?). Her ear drum was monkey-butt red and the dr. said it should be pearly white. Poor, poor girl, I felt so bad! This is her first of, I'm sure, more to come. I used to get ear infections a lot as a little kid so I know how painful they are. They always seemed to strike in the middle of the night and I'd be up all night crying.

I'm so glad, however, that we know what the problem is and it has a quick and cheap fix. I'm not a huge fan of antibiotics, I think they are a little overused, but I'm so grateful that they exist and work in situations like this!!!! Praise God, my little girl is already feeling better and we had a really good day today. She's still whiny and not 100% herself but so much improved over the past 4 days.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Smartipants winner!

Well, after getting hit hard last week with bronchitis, flu, fevers, yucky noses and the such I've gotten quite behind on, well, everything! So I realize that this is late, but here is the winner of the Smartipants giveaway.
Out of 541 entries, wow, random picked number 240 and the winner is....

Ashley! Congrats, she has confirmed and her information will be sent on to the sponsor. I've got two cool giveaways that I'm hoping to get published tonight, so stay tuned!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

I have a two year old!

So, actually my daughter turned two a few weeks ago, but I've been really unmotivated lately, especially to blog. Anyway, you know those Babycenter updates that come in your email (I know you all get them too). Well, they used to say: Your baby is such and such months old, then they when Emma turned one they stared saying: Your toddler is such and such months old. But now! Now they say: Your preschooler is....What???? I don't have a preschooler, I have a sweet little baby girl!!!! No, really, I do.

I just can't believe how fast the time has gone, and yes, I do know how cliche that is and that EVERY parent says that, but it is probably the most truthful truth in the whole world! Emma is so grown up and still such a baby at the same time. She is smart, funny, kind, sweet, caring and loving. She can count to 5, knows how to spell her name, knows colors and shapes (even octagon), plays make believe with her little babies and makes up stories and scenarios. She also still says: "need mama" sometimes in the middle of the night, says: "rock Emma" and snuggles with me, wears diapers, uses a binky at night (we're now binky-free, yay), sleeps in a crib, can't open doors yet (and I'm not encouraging her to either).

She's gone from this:

(this was one of her first big outings, to the Skagit Valley Tulip festival, when she was 10 weeks old)

to this:

(first taste of watermelon, at 4 months old)

to this:
(swimming with daddy, 6 months old)

to this:

(her one year check up!)

to this:

(riding her 4 wheeler, 14 months)

to this:

(swinging at the park, 18 months)

to this:

(a super-cute, sassy two year old)

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Just when I was about to start spring cleaning, we get hit with this:

A late February snow! Two days ago I had my drying rack out on the deck and was sunning my diapers. And I have all sorts of ideas for spring cleaning, seriously, I have a huge list. And...the baby is coming in June, so I'm probably nesting, so the drive to clean will be extra strong.

On that note; does anyone have any good ideas for cleaning metal blinds? I hate metal blinds!!!! But they're what we have in our house and not a high priority on the home improvement list. Anyway, I do dust them regularly, but some of them were gross when we moved in and I've never given them a scrub down. I was looking up methods online and found this common suggestion: take them down, soak in a bathtub with mild soap, rinse and then lay out on a towel to dry. Has anyone tried this? Does it work?

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

23 weeks, and it's a.......


Yikes, honestly, I'm still getting used to the idea of having another baby and more so now that I know it's a boy. I really, really wanted another girl (I'm sorry if that sounds selfish or mean or whatever, but I'm not sorry for the way I feel, I can't help it). I just haven't had time to think of myself as a mom to a boy. I know that as soon as I hold the baby in my arms all doubt and any negative feelings will vanish, but at the moment I'm still getting used to it, so please don't judge. I fully believe in expressing one's feelings, I think it's necessary in order to work through them.

Besides just wanting another girl, there are a couple personal issues relating to boys that my husband and I are on opposite sides of and negotiation has been difficult. I was really stressed out about it during the first trimester! I'm starting to feel a little bit better, and again, I know I'll be fine once the baby is actually here.

Most of the important baby gear we bought for Emma is gender neutral looking, not that the color of a car seat or stroller really matters, but you know how some people get ;) So, now I'm on the hunt for baby boy clothes, since I don't have any of those and we're otherwise pretty well set. Oh, except for one more thing......diapers!!!!

Oh newborn joy! I'm so excited to start cloth diapering right away this time (I didn't start with Emma until she was about 6 months old). We bought up a bunch of small Bum Genius all-in-ones (10, I think) back when they were discontinued and I have a super cute Smartipants that I got for review (check out my giveaway here), a couple fitteds that I got from a WAHM and three small Fuzzibunz. I also plan to use prefolds and covers, which I already have. Other than that, what else do you think I need to exclusively cloth diaper a newborn? Of course I still have Emma's whole stash, which is mostly onesize diapers, that I can use too. I'm not planning on Emma totally being out of diapers, but hopefully she'll be mostly potty trained by June when little guys comes.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Smartipants review and giveaway **Extended until 3/16!**

When I got the Smartipants newborn diaper in the mail, I couldn't help but smile, it's just the cutest thing ever! I was blessed to be sent a "little smarti" newborn diaper from Smartipants for review. I've loved Smartipants diapers ever since I first heard of them and bought my first 3 pack of pocket diapers. They fit my daughter well (still do), are super simple to wash and have the perfect amount of absorbancy. They also come in cute colors.

I cannot wait for baby to arrive so I can put this diaper on him. I didn't start cloth diapering Emma until she was about 6 months old, and I'm really excited to do it from day one this time around! I just can't resist the cuteness of newborn cloth diapers, they really are the most precious things ever. I've taken really good care of my stash (which is mostly onesize diapers) and plan to use them for the next baby.  I don't think I'll need newborn diapers for too long because of all the onesizes we already have, but I do want to have some because I've heard that onesize diapers don't really start fitting until about 10 pounds.

The Little Smarti newborn diaper is an all in one, so you don't need a cover, has a velcro closure, which I prefer, especially for a tiny baby. It has an extra thick layer of absorbant microfiber down the middle and a stay dry top layer of soft suedecloth. It comes in three cute colors. Since my newborn isn't here yet, I solicted Elmo to help me out :) The diaper fit him great.

Here is the Little Smarti compared to two other newborn diapers I have (left to right), a Fuzzibunz size small and a Bum Genius all in one size small.

  As you can see, it's pretty comprable to the BG, but quite a bit smaller than the FB. Now I'm wishing I'd bought xs Fuzzibunz, oh well. I don't plan to use newborn diapers for too longMy thought in even buying newborn diapers was this: I've heard from so many moms that onesize diapers don't start fitting well until around 10 pounds. For my daughter, that would've been about 2 months. Who knows how big this baby will be, but I'm not expecting a tiny one, since my first was 8lbs. 14oz.

Here is the Little Smarti next to two onesize diapers on the smallest setting. Left to right: Smartipants pocket diaper and a Bum Genius pocket diaper. Admittedly, the Smartipants onesize on the left is about 18 months old, so the elastic is probably on it's last legs. The Bum Genius on the right is a 4.0 and quite a bit newer, so it's much more similar in size to the Little Smarti.

Have I convinced you yet? Wouldn't you like to have a Smartipants of your own? You can get them here.


Win a great Smartipants prize package right here! One of my lucky readers will win a Smartipants diaper with insert in choice of color and a smartfit cover. I'm so jealous, wish I could win.

How to enter:

Each action counts as one entry unless otherwise stated. Leave a separate comment for each entry and please include your email address. You must complete the mandatory entry before you are eligible for any other entries.

**Mandatory Entry**

Visit the Smartipants website and let me know which of their products is your favorite.

Extra Entries

*like Smartipants on Facebook
*sign up for the Smartipants mailing list (enter your email address at the bottom of the website)

*Follow me publicly through google friend connect-counts as 3 entries! Leave 3 separate comments.

*Subscribe to my blog by email, through feedburner-counts as 3 entries!

*Grab my button and tell me where it is posted

*Blog about this giveaway, link back to my site and leave me the URL of your blog

*NEW!!! Like my brand new Facebook page- counts as 5 entries!!!!

The fine print:
This giveaway is open worldwide and will end March 9, 2011 at 9PM pacific time.

Winner will be chosen by and contacted by e-mail, then must respond within 48 hours or else a new winner will be chosen.

I was not paid for this review, and received no compensation. I was provided the product mentioned (little smarti newborn diaper) for review purposes. All opinions expressed are my own and completely truthful.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

I'm featured!!

Check it out! I'm the featured blogger today on Simply Stacie. Hers is a really neat blog that I've been following for quite a while now. She has great giveaways on a daily basis and lots of other good informative posts. You should definitely stop by and follow her!!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

SMEAD helps you get organized for tax time

I don't know about you, but tax time is always a little stressful for me. There is so much to think about, information and receipts to gather, so on and so forth. Luckily, SMEAD is here to help. They have all kinds of great office organizing products to help you get things on track!

I was sent the tax organizer and the expanding file to review. The tax organizer file is so awesome, SMEAD has really thought of everything! There are 6 pockets and tabs for filing and storing records and receipts. And just in case you don't know what kinds of documents you should be collecting, there is a printed checklist right on the front cover to help you keep track. Printed and blank labels are included for labelling the pockets.

The expanding file has 12 pockets, conveniently, one for each month. It holds 900 sheets of paper, so you should be able to fit everything you need for tax time in it. The file will allow you to store papers as you go, making it easy to just grab it and go, come tax time. The best part is, it allows you to keep everything all in one place. In my house, if there is no place to file something, it just gets shifted around from counter top to counter top. This file will make things so much easier to get organized!

These items are available for a limited time, at a special price at Walmart and Office Depot.

SMEAD also offers some great articles for those of us who need even more guidance. You should head over to their website and check out all the great resources.

**The fine print: I received the Jan-Dec expanding file folder and the Income tax organizer for review from SMEAD.

Friday, January 28, 2011

19 weeks!

I really feel pregnant now! What I mean by that is, when I bend over or lay on my tummy (which I won't be able to do much longer) I can feel that there's something in there. Baby is very active at night and when I'm eating. I've gained about 5 pounds, but I've grown a ton. Can't wear regular pants anymore and I feel huge. Luckily I'm not having the horrible edema in my legs that I had the first time, knock on wood, and the heartburn has only bothered me a few times so far. I am however, having that bad pregnancy skin that I've only read about, sigh, oh well. Baby's health and that's what matters.

Overall, things are going pretty well. My vitamin D and iron levels are low, no surprise since I live in the Pac. NW and don't eat much meat. Getting enough of those two elements is somewhat challenging, but I'm doing my best. I discussed my constant craving for anything sweet with the midwife and she suggested that craving sweets usually means that your body needs protein. This make total sense, so now I have to really focus on adding things like nuts and beans to my diet and cut way back on the juice and fruit, this will be HARD!

I am 1000% more satisfied with having a midwife than I was with the OB! My OB was always in such a rush to get through our appointments, I didn't really feel listened to and she even brushed off some of my concerns and discounted my feelings, thought and ideas about my own body! It's so nice to have a prenatal care giver who is actually concerned about my mental, emotional and nutritional well being. Those topics were NEVER even brought up with my OB, and they are soooooo important. I feel listened to, cared for, respected and involved, things I never really felt the first time around. Gosh, if I'd only known then what I know now.......I just kick myself sometimes!

We're finding out the sex of the baby on Tuesday and I can't wait. I really, really, really want another girl, but of course it's not up to me.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

CSN Stores review

Anyone with a toddler knows that it sometimes gets difficult finding new and exciting ways for them to release all their energy. One great, and really fun outdoor activity: swing sets! I live in the Pacific Northwest, and this time of the year we don't get a ton of sunshine so when it peeks out, we rush outside and soak it up! This is my dream set:

CSN stores is a great place to go if you're in the market for a new swing set or other toys or anything, really! I love CSN, I've ordered from them a couple times now and have always been satisfied. The shipping is fast, products are high quality and customer service is superior. Check it out, you will not be disappointed!

*In exchange for writing this post, I was given a $35 CSN gift code with which to use to purchase future review items.

Maternitique review and giveaway 2/9 **CLOSED**


While searching for maternity boutiques online, I came across Maternitique. This is a great store, offering everything from skincare safe for pregnancy to clothes, post partum supplies and nursery items. Most all the products are natural and/or organic so you can feel completely confident purchasing from Tara (the owner). This store is so unique and diverse, I love all the items she carries.

I consider myself pretty environmentally conscious and I'm on a quest to live a greener life. So, how is it that I haven't really thought about choosing greener choices for facial care? I'm super careful about all the products I use with my daughter, but I don't often stop and think about myself. I don't really know, but I'm glad that Tara sent me the products she did because I really needed them! And now I'm determined not to go back to drugstore products again.

I was sent the Novena Organic Citrus Blemish Lotion and the Belli Acne Clearing facial wash.

Let me tell you: these products could not have come at a better time! I didn't have acne or skin issues with my first pregnancy, but this time around it's different. I feel like I'm in high school again, darn hormones!! These products have been a Godsend, they pretty much cleared up my skin problems in a week. I know things can change, but I'm feeling really good about the way my skin looks right now.

The facial wash is a gel so it goes on smoothly and simply. It has a really mild lemon scent, which my sometimes queasy stomach really appreciates. You can use it as a regular facial wash or leave it on for 5 minutes as an intensive anti-acne facial mask. All of the ingredients are safe for use during pregnancy so you don't have to worry about any harmful effects on your baby.  And the best part, it REALLY works! I love this stuff!!

The citrus blemish lotion is a miracle worker! This stuff cleared up my nasty acne in a week. And it's ORGANIC, that's got to make you feel good. Like the facial wash, it has a really nice, light scent (grapfruit-berry). Just two pumps at night is all you need to turn your skin around. It rates very low on the Environmental Working Group's cosmetic database. I always check the EWG's database to find out the safety of skincare products before I use them.

I hope that you find Maternitique as special as I did and consider purchasing your maternity needs from her!

Buy it

Of course you can buy Smartmom products from their website, and select retail partners.


Win it!

One lucky reader will win a $25 gift certificate to Maternitique!
How to enter:

Each action counts as one entry unless otherwise stated. Leave a separate comment for each entry and please include your email address. You must complete the mandatory entry before you are eligible for any other entries.

**Mandatory Entry**

Visit Maternitique and let me know something you'd like to have!

Extra Entries

*like the Maternitique Facebook page (2 entries)

*sign up for the Maternitique newsletter

*follow Maternitique on Twitter
*Follow me publicly through google friend connect-counts as 3 entries! Leave 3 separate comments.

*Subscribe to my blog by email, through feedburner-counts as 3 entries!

*Grab my button and tell me where it is posted

*Blog about this giveaway, link back to my site and leave me the URL of your blog

*NEW!!! Like my brand new Facebook page- counts as 5 entries!!!!

The fine print
This giveaway is open worldwide and will end February 9, 2011 at 9PM pacific time.

Winner will be chosen by and contacted by e-mail, then must respond within 48 hours or else a new winner will be chosen.

I was not paid for this review, and received no compensation. I was provided the products mentioned for review purposes. All opinions expressed are my own and completely truthful.


Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Soda Stream review and giveaway! 2/9 **CLOSED**

I am a huge soda drinker and really would drink way too much of it if I didn't know what was good for me.  So, when I was given the chance to review a Soda Stream home soda machine I was thrilled!  This machine is so cool. It's eco friendly, helps you save money and is super easy to use.
From the Soda Stream website:

The advantages of SodaStream's Home Carbonation System include:

Convenience: No need to carry heavy bottles from the store. The SodaStream system is simple to use and requires no batteries or electricity.

Environmentally-Friendly: SodaStream is an "Active Green" solution that minimizes the huge eco-footprint caused by the manufacture, transport and waste of plastic bottles.

Variety: SodaStream offers over 100 flavors to suit everyone’s taste. Regular, diet, natural, fruity flavors, ice tea, energy drinks, sport drinks, tonic and many more.

Space Saver: No need to store bottles of beverages or empty bottles for recycling in your home.

Personalization: Make drinks just the way you love them… more bubbles, less bubbles, sweeter or lighter, even create your own flavor!

Family Fun: The system is quick and easy to use. It's fun for everyone and kids just love it!

Value for Money: Great savings compared to pre-packed carbonated water and beverages.

Satisfaction Guaranteed: SodaStream drinks makers are of extremely high quality and include a money-back satisfaction guarantee and Lifetime Warranty to our customers.

Like I said, I love, love, love soda, but we all know that many soda brands are filled with tons of artificial chemicals, sugar and other unhealthy ingredients. The Soda Stream flavors are a little healthier than traditional soda. There's even an all natural line of flavors that contain no preservatives or artificial ingredients and actually taste delicious. And, my favorite flavors of all are the Mywater Flavor Essence syrups, which are unsweetened and just give your water a little hint of flavor. I guess you could compare it to Talking Rain. It's so yummy and will really get you drinking your water.

I received the Fountain Jet home soda maker for review. I really like that there are no cords or batteries, so I can put the machine anywhere. It's slim, compact and fits right in. Although I received the black model, there are 3 different colors and a ton of different machine models. The Fountain Jet comes with 2 reusable 1-liter bottles and a carbonating cartridge that makes 60 liters of soda or carbonated water.

It's so super simple to use. Really, you just fill the bottle with water, put it on the machine, push the button three times and then add flavor (if you want). That's it! You have fresh, homemade, healthier soda. I even brought it over to my grandma's house for our family Christmas get-together so the whole family could have their own sodas. They loved it.

You can find the Soda Stream machine that's right for you here. You can also find all the accessories such as syrups, bottles and carbonating cartridges on the Soda Stream website or at select retailers.

Buy it


Win it!

One lucky reader will win a Soda Stream fountain jet home soda maker starter kit with 2 flavors of your choice, yay!
How to enter:

Each bullet counts as one entry unless otherwise stated. Leave a separate comment for each entry and please include your email address. You must complete the mandatory entry before you are eligible for any other entries.

**Mandatory Entry**

Visit Soda Stream and let me know something else you think is really cool about them.

Extra Entries

*Follow me publicly through google friend connect-counts as 3 entries

*Subscribe to my blog by email, through feedburner-counts as 3 entries

*Grab my button and tell me where it is posted

*Blog about this giveaway, link back to my site and leave me the URL of your blog post

*NEW!!! Like my brand new Facebook page- counts as 5 entries!!!!

The fine print
This giveaway is open worldwide and will end February 9, 2011 at 9PM pacific time.

Winner will be chosen by and contacted by e-mail,  and then must respond within 48 hours or else a new winner will be chosen.

I was not paid for this review, and received no compensation. I was provided the product mentioned for review purposes. All opinions expressed are my own and completely truthful.

Monday, January 10, 2011


Here are the winners of the giveaways that ended this past week, congrats, everyone has been emailed.

Ecomom winner:

Congratulations to MommyFerg02

Smartmom Teething Bling winner:

Congratulations to Alliejean

Nachomama winner:

Congratulations to Tina

All winners have been emailed and confirmed. Thanks to everyone who entered!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Husky tools 13 Piece Power Tek Precision Screwdriver review

I was recently contacted by a representative from Husky tools and given the opportunity to review the 13 piece Power Tek Precision screwdriver set.

I love this screwdriver. Most of the tools in our home "belong" to my husband and he keeps them in the garage. It's not always handy for me to go out there to retrieve a tool when I need it. The Power Tek precision screwdriver is slim (like a really thick pencil), has an easy touch forward and backward button and 12 different attachments. Since I usually only use a screwdriver for small, precise-type jobs around the house, like tightening screws in the baby gate or changing batteries in one of Emma's toys, the size and shape of this screwdriver are perfect! I keep it in the "all purpose" drawer in the kitchen so it's always handy.

The Power Tek comes in a neat case that holds all of it's parts conveniently in one place and it's guaranteed FOREVER, how's that for value! This is the perfect "mom's" tool. Check out all the other tools that Husky has to offer and I'm sure you'll find something you can use!

*I was provided the product mentioned above for review purposes. I received no other compensation and all opinions are my own and completely truthful.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Ahhh, a new year

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas, I know we did. It was Emma's second Christmas, we got to visit with many different family members, and went to Christmas eve service at church for the first time. I really want to teach Emma the TRUE meaning of Christmas so we started reading about baby Jesus a while ago and reading the Christmas story. If you ask her what Christmas is about, she'll even say "baby Jesus", it's so cute.

It's a new year now and that means a fresh start. I like fresh starts, you can do whatever you want, move on, start over and make things new and better. So, what will 2011 be like for me? Of course, I can't know for sure, but I can hope for the best. A few things that I'm looking forward to :

My daughter is turning 2 in February. I know every mom says this, but I really can't believe how fast it's gone by! These two years have been a whirlwind of emotion, ups and downs, discoveries and milestones. There is no greater joy for me than watching my daughter grow and develop!

I'm turning 32, yikes. That's pretty much half way to 35, which is half way to you-know-what!

I'm having a baby!!!!!!! This will likely be the most exciting event of the year. Emma's little sister or brother is due in June and I'm super excited to be attempting natural labor with a midwife this time!!

My husband and I have finally found a church that we both like and have been going regularly for a few months now. Emma likes it too, she's always really excited on Sunday morning and calls it "baby Jesus time". I'd really like to get more involved and possibly join a small Bible study or women's group.

I used to garden quite a bit, but haven't really done any the past couple years. I really want to plant a garden this spring. I think it'll be a great activity for Emma and I and an awesome learning opportunity. She even got little Dora gardening gloves and tools for Christmas!

Endless possibilities! I can do whatever I want, really, I can. And you can, too. I don't really make "resolutions" but I do like to set goals. I want to eat better, sleep more, pray more, get organized, spend less, read more and be more communicative with good friends.

What are you looking forward to in 2011? Really, I'd love to know!