Tag - tips

Keep Your Sanity During Holiday Travel

As an ambassador for Rayovac I have been compensated for this blog post. All thoughts and opinions on the products are my own.

Travel during the Holiday season can be a bit overwhelming. Add some children (maybe even a bitty baby), maybe a pet, inclement weather, traffic, construction, and the stress level can be almost unbearable. Trust me, I’ve been there!

Here are some tips on how my family stays sane during Holiday travel, {hope they come in handy!}:

Keep Your Sanity During Holiday Travel MommyB

It’s electric! Boogie Woogie.

{great now I have that song stuck in my head} Seriously though, we’re not HUGE screen time parents on your average day, but a 4+ hour trip, especially those longer than 10 hours call for some sort of electronic play, at least in our car.

This can be tricky though for several reasons, but here are a few tricks to keep a handle on the situation.

1. Charge EVERYTHING up before you leave. The night before or the day of your trip get your charge on.

2. Bring extra batteries. I recommend Rayovac Alkaline batteries because they’re a trusted brand name AND hold charge just as long as their competitors plus they’re a lower price, great for energy sucking travel toys. **

3. Set time limits on electronics (don’t let the kiddos play on screens for several hours on end or you’ll have crabby kiddos).

** Rayovac has some great coupons available for even greater savings on their already low priced products! Head to the Rayovac Facebook page to unlock them!!

Rayovac Coupons

 

MommyB Happy Traveling Baby

Baby Love

1. If possible, it’s best for someone to sit next to baby. It’s easier (and safer) than stopping the car or trying to reach back.

2. Plan for several stops for feeding and changing.

3. Consider buying a car-safe musical toy or mobile to keep baby entertained on the ride. Bring some extra batteries just in case!

Keep Sane During Holiday Travels MommyB

Game Plan

Decide ahead of time what games and activities you’ll bring or use to keep the kiddos occupied.

1. Of course this varies by age, but we like to bring mini dry erase boards for them and us to write words, draw pictures, and do math problems {bonus points for fun learning}.

2. Other great activities for kiddos are counting cars (choose a color and get counting), car bingo (find great printables on Pinterest), I spy, and any versions of animal, mineral, vegetable (we use nouns – person, place, thing).

3. Plan to stop at interesting places along the way. It can be planned (preferably) or impromptu, but this will give the whole family a break and if it’s an activity something fun to do, and if it’s just a beautiful scenic rest stop something to talk about on the rest of your trip.

 

What tips and tricks do you use to keep your sanity during Holiday travel?

 

Whatever you come up with for your family’s travel plans, just make sure you enjoy it. Not every second will be the most fun or memorable, but taking the good from what can be mundane is what truly builds up our family time.

Safe travels this Holiday season!!!

This is a sponsored post on behalf of my partnership with Rayovac. All opinions and thoughts expressed in this post are my own, yours may vary.

Diabetes Awareness Month Tips and Savings

This is a sponsored post in partnership with The Motherhood.

Did you know November is Diabetes Awareness Month?? According to the CDC, more than 29 million Americans have diabetes and even more that don’t know they have it. That’s a lot of people! If you aren’t personally affected by diabetes I bet you can think of someone who is.

I’ve seen people living with diabetes all my life.I grew up with a couple of children who had Type 1 diabetes and required an insulin pump and shots. In my own family, my mother had Type 2 diabetes {praise God has not been diabetic for years because of weight loss and healthier living}, and my father-in-law who passed a couple of years ago had diabetes that left him with several diabetes related conditions.

While it’s never something you want to hear that people have to live with, there are ways to modify your diet and supplements/medications that can help manage diabetes.

Diabetes Awareness Month Tips & Savings #ad

This month Johnson & Johnson is focusing their HEALTHY ESSENTIALS® program on helping manage the effects of this disease. They’re also offering up to $35 on select items at healthyessentials.com and I’m so thankful for this program!

 Here are some tips and products to help with areas of diabetic concern:

1) Supplements may support overall health.

2) You may be concerned about plaque and gingivitis, so healthy oral care habits are essential.

Product recommendations:

Listerine UltraClean for Diabetes Awareness Month #ad

LISTERINE® ULTRACLEAN® Dental Floss, Shred-resistant dental floss stretches, flexes and slides easily between teeth. MICRO-GROOVES® Technology removes 2x more plaque than Glide® Mint Floss.

LISTERINE® ULTRACLEAN® Mouthwash,– The only leading mouthwash with an anti-tartar ingredient and new EVERFRESH™ Technology for a dentist clean feeling that lasts up to three times longer vs. brushing alone. Has the clinically proven plaque and germ-killing power of LISTERINE® Antiseptic.

3) Lotion or cream such as LUBRIDERM® can help moisturize your skin. Talk to your doctor before use.

Product Recommendation:

LUBRIDERM® Daily Moisture Fragrance-Free Lotion, Replenish and moisturize dry skin. It’s fragrance-free, fortified with Vitamin B5 and skin-essential moisturizers. The clean-feeling, non-greasy formula absorbs in seconds and moisturizes for hours – in fact, it’s clinically shown to moisturize for 24 hours.

4) Check with your doctor; your wounds should be treated immediately. 

Product Recommendations:

NEOSPORIN® Original Ointment, For over 55 years, NEOSPORIN® products have been the gold standard for all your minor cuts, scrapes and burns. NEOSPORIN® Original Ointment provides 24 hour infection protection and may help minimize the appearance of scars.

BAND-AID® Brand Adhesive Bandages, America’s #1 bandage brand covers all your wound-protection needs. BAND-AID® Brand Adhesive Bandages have covered and protected minor cuts and scrapes for millions of people over 90 years.

5) Currently one in three American adults have pre-diabetes and are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. One of the most important steps you can take to lower this risk is eating well to maintain a healthy weight.

Product Recommendation:

Splenda for Diabetes Awareness Month #ad

When used to replace sugar, SPLENDA® No Calorie Sweetener Products can help people with diabetes reduce their intake of carbohydrate and calories. SPLENDA® Sweetener Products can contribute to a healthier lifestyle by helping to reduce calories from added sugar, and can be used almost anywhere sugar is used, including cooking and baking.

 

Whether you’re pre-diabetic, diabetic, or just wanting to make some healthy changes in your life all of the products above will get you on the right track. Don’t forget for extra savings head to healthyessentials.com to save on things that will help make this month the healthiest month for you and your family!

 

This post is part of the HEALTHY ESSENTIALS® 2014 program by Johnson & Johnson Consumer Companies, Inc. and The Motherhood, who sent me a box of products and compensated me for my time. Opinions, experiences and photos shared here are all my own, and I hope you enjoy them.

Third Party trademarks used herein are trademarks of their respective owners.

Showing Kindness with #KleenexCare

Care Package #kleenexcares
I did some acts of kindness with Kleenex® Brand products as part of a sponsored post for Socialstars #KleenexCare

 

For our family November is a time to be thankful for all that we have in our lives. That includes special people like our friends, neighbors, and family. Sharing Kleenex® Brand Tissues. is an easy way to show you care especially now that cold and flu season is here. Kleenex® is a small act of care with major impact.

 

Acts of Kindness with Kids #kleenexcares

 

Acts of Kindness:

Consider creating a Care Kit for those less fortunate.

We try to keep a care package or two in our car for people in need that we see in our day-to-day travels.

 

Care Package #kleenexcares

 

The bags include hygiene products like toothbrushes, bandaids, and of course we put some Kleenex Brand Tissues in as well. Sometimes we include some non-perishable foods like granola bars as well. These bags are very easy to make and leave a lasting impact when you hand them out too! Plus the kids love getting involved in making them.

Another act of kindness that the B girls love being a part of is packing Christmas boxes for children overseas.

Christmas Boxes #kleenexcare

These boxes can only contain certain items and Kleenex Brand Tissues are a great addition for the hygiene category, plus the travel packs are the perfect size. Lil’ C’s school is packing them up this month and she was so excited to add them to fill up her box for a little boy.

Packing Christmas Boxes #kleenexcares

 

Now it’s your turn to join the “Share the Kleenex Care” movement.

Here are some ways you can partake in acts of kindness this month and share the care of Kleenex with others:

We all know that it’s no fun when you need a tissue and there’s none to be found.  It’s easy to leave a package of Kleenex Brand tissues where there aren’t any.

or

Create a quick and easy get-well basket for a sick friend or neighbor, filled with soup, Kleenex Brand Tissues (because Kleenex softness is a catalyst for showing kindness and care), and other healthy remedies. This will brighten their day and help them to get the rest and care they need.

Head to KleenexCare.com to find out how your acts of kindness can make a difference and get ideas from others doing good deeds.

What are some ways you show that you care??

 

 

This is a sponsored post in partnership with Socialstars and Kleenex Brand. All opinions expressed in this post are my own, honest opinions. 

How to Keep Your Kids Safe this Halloween

As an ambassador for Rayovac I have been compensated for this blog post. All thoughts and opinions on the products are my own.

Whether your kiddos are trick-or-treating this Halloween, handing out candy, or attending a party you want them to be as safe as they can be right?!?

Here are some tips to help keep your kids safe this Halloween:

1. Have a plan

  • Decide if you’re going as a group (depending on age of your family members) or if the child will be picked up or dropped off.
  • Charge your mobile phones and if you have one, bring your mobile battery power pack.
  • If you’re trick-or-treating plan a route ahead of time and adjust accordingly.

2. Discuss

  • Speak to your children about what to do in a variety of situations. This will help them not only to be aware of what they might experience but also give them ideas on how to handle the situation.

Some ideas include; when they see someone in a scary costume, when a stranger invites them into their home, when other children cut in line, if someone’s porch light is not on.

  • If you have an older child make sure you discuss rules while they are with friends and curfew ahead of time so that they can ask questions and understand the rules before their night out.

3.  Take Safety Precautions

  • Bring a source of light with you. Glow sticks are fun, but flashlights are often better especially in dimly lit areas where children might easily trip.

Rayovac has a great flashlight perfect for Halloween night that combines the power of a flashlight with the fun of a glow stick.

How to Keep your Kids Safe this Halloween

 

The Glow in the Dark Flashlight, features include:

Super bright 14 LED light
Beam Distance: 59 feet (18.5 meters)
Battery Run Time: 9 hours on Rayovac Heavy Duty batteries (included)*
Glow in the dark rubber grip
Lifetime warranty

And is available for $4.99, however for the month of October, Rayovac has a promotion for $1 off. To get your discount head here: Rayovac.com and enter the Promo Code: GLOWINTHEDARK {you can also get FREE SHIPPING on orders $25+}.

  • Another great way to keep your children safe is to teach them how to be a good pedestrian. Practice during the day and if possible at night as well.
  • Have your child wear a costume that is easily visible by vehicles, if necessary add reflective strips to their costume/clothing to help drivers spot them.

While these are only a few things that you can do to help keep your children safe I’d love to hear some ideas of yours. Please leave a comment here telling me what tips you use to keep your kiddos safe on Halloween or any night.

This is a sponsored post on behalf of my partnership with Rayovac. All opinions and thoughts expressed in this post are my own, yours may vary.

Grand Opening of the NEW American Girl Store Charlotte Sneak Peek

The NEW American Girl Store at the Southpark Mall in Charlotte, North Carolina opens this weekend, Saturday, October 11th – Sunday, October 12th.

The B girls and I were invited to the store today for a sneak peek before opening day. Here are some photos of our visit:

American Girl Charlotte Sneak Peek MommyB

NEW American Girl Store Southpark Charlotte Visit MommyB

The new 12,000-square-foot retail site, located in Charlotte, North Carolina, features a fun, casual environment where girls and their family members and friends can shop for their favorite American Girl products, browse a great selection of books in their bookstore, enjoy lunch and dinner, or an unforgettable dessert in the Bistro, treat their doll to a new ‘do in the Doll Hair Salon, and celebrate birthdays or other special events.

American Girl Store Charlotte Salon MommyB

 

American Girl Charlotte bitty baby & Bookstore MommyB

 

American Girl Charlotte Beforever Collection

 

American Girl Store Charlotte Bistro MommyB

 

Details for the Grand Opening can be found on their website: American Girl Charlotte. If you’re interested in attending this weekend I highly suggest being prepared ahead of time and plan on spending hours at the mall. If you make it a day-trip it will definitely make you and your kiddos a little happier, bring activities, and plan to visit other locations in the Southpark Mall to make the time pass quicker.

 

American Girl Charlotte Grand Opening on MommyBKnowsBest

 

American Girl Store is at Southpark Mall, 4400 Sharon Road, Charlotte, NC 28211. The best entrance to park next to is the Macy’s wing of Southpark Mall and you’ll find the store as you walk to the Mall entrance on the second level. {You won’t be able to miss it.}

In all we loved learning about the history of American Girl, enjoy the wholesome values and character that this brand brings to keep our daughters young as opposed to some products available on shelves today. While the cost of an American Girl doll can be higher than some customer’s budget there are options to purchase accessories, mini versions of their favorite dolls, or a great incentive {like my girls are doing} to save up their money by doing chores and birthday dollars.

Have you ever been to an American Girl store? Will you visit the NEW American Girl store in Charlotte, North Carolina? 

 

 

This is not a paid post, I attended a media event upon request from American Girl. All opinions and thoughts are my own honest words. Your experiences may vary.

How to Take the Spooky Out of October

Let’s face it, some families just do not like the spooky aspect of October. My girls aren’t into the skeletons or creepy zombies {one more than the other} and I’m not sure if it’s because I’m getting older, but as the years go by the more I’m turned off by scary things too. {I used to enjoy horror films growing up, now not so much.}

We have tons of friends, neighbors, and family who don’t mind a little spooky and some who totally love it, but for those of you who are like us, not fans, here are some ways to “Take the spooky out of October“.

How to Take the Spooky out of October MommyB

Celebrate Fall – Below are some ways your family can focus on Autumn and the Harvest.

  • Pick pumpkins at a local farm, it’s a fun activity and provide great decorations.
  • Leaf Art. Whether you’re making a banner from paper leaves or you’re using leaves for a leaf rubbing collage, there are a lot of things that you can make using one of Fall’s most beautiful gifts. {I pinned a bunch on my Holiday Themes pinterest board.}
  • Talk to your children about harvest, what it means for farmers, and the importance of it.
  • Host a Fall celebration with bobbing for apples, warm cinnamon donuts, and pumpkin painting.
  • Decorate your home with leaves, pumpkins, hay bales, maize corn, and other fall favorites.
  • Buy deliciously scented Fall candles. October is a great start to an awesome smelling home, in my opinion.
  • Enjoy warm drinks including hot cocoa, apple cider, and pumpkin spice anything.
  • Host a pie night with friends and create awesome Fall flavors, half the fun is baking and the other is eating.
  • Have a Fall family photo shoot. Make sure you choose a location that will highlight the weather and Fall changes.

Non Spooky Fall MommyB

What are some of the ways your family celebrates October in a non spooky way?

In honor of an un-scary October, I’m giving away a great book by Tommy Nelson, “Good Night, Little Pumpkin”. This adorable, not terrifying board book is great for children ages 1 to 4 years. It’s a sweet story that talks about the sounds, and smells of Fall that your kiddos will love to sit with you and read.

Good Night Little Pumpkin Giveaway

I’m giving away a copy to one lucky reader! Enter here to win:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This is not a sponsored post. I received a copy of Good Night, Little Pumpkin to review and all prize fulfillment is the responsibility of the brand hosting the giveaway. Any opinions expressed in this post are my own, honest thoughts, your experiences may vary.

PodKeeper’s New and Improved Website and Twitter Party

As a proactive mom I’ve always felt that being scheduled and organized, while allowing for some flexibility has really helped me manage the busy-ness of parenting. As my girls get older, they have more responsibilities and activities that I need to handle and without a way to track it all, I’m often found missing out on an event or forgetting items.

MH900446326

Of course I have several Facebook groups, email threads, group text messages, newsletters, {and the list goes on} for each activity and event, but to be honest, that in itself can be a little overwhelming. I find myself wondering, did I post the thread? did I write that down in my calendar? and racking my brain just as much as if I had no system in place.

When I heard about PodKeeper I was super excited about a website that could handle my groups, events, forums, calendar all in one central location. My excitement drove me to offering social media services to PodKeeper and I currently work with a great brand, that helps me as a parent, and one that’s product I use and love.

Because I heart PodKeeper, I want you to try this free, online website, not for me, but so you can see how the site can revolutionize your definition of organizing your family.

To learn more about PodKeeper, and some great NEW features, I encourage you to join me for our upcoming Twitter Party. Susan from 5minutesformom.com will be joining us as well!

 

PodKeeper Twitter Invitation

 

Have any questions or comments? Feel free to comment here.

Hope to see you at the party!

 

PodKeeper is a client that I love and hope that you will too. All opinions and thoughts expressed in this post are my own.

Tips for Parenting a Fearful Child

There are many reasons that children are fearful. Some reasons are based on their age, some reasons are a reaction to an event, some reasons are learned, and some are just a part of that child’s personality.

God gives us the exact child(ren) that we are supposed to parent. He knows us and He knows that child and He doesn’t make mistakes.

I remember when my children were full of worry and had fears about bugs, animals, the day ahead of them, I asked their pediatrician if their fears were normal. Each time I asked he assured that it was okay and normal for them to feel the way they did.

Some part of me however felt like I needed to fix them, to take away their fears, and I found myself praying that I could find a solution to calm their anxiety.

God had a solution for me, it wasn’t what I expected though.

God reminded me that He made my children JUST THE WAY THEY ARE for a purpose. I don’t need to “fix” my kids, I don’t need to do anything other than pray for them, thank God for their strengths and realize what I might consider weakness God will bring blessings to His name through every part of them if they allow Him to.

My biggest piece of advice to parents of fearful children would be to remember God is in control and your child His child is exactly as they are meant to be.

There are ways to not change, but helping your kiddos through tough situations. Tools that can be helpful for them and you to use to calm down or remind them also to trust in God include:

Prayer – Help them create a prayer or elements of a prayer that they can say when they are worried or scared.

Communicate – Often times your fearful child may not want to talk when they are afraid, but remind them that you are available to listen and help if they feel comfortable in that moment.

Read – Grab your Bible and find verses on fear and print them out on an index card and post them where your child (and you) will see them.

Online websites, and books have a wealth of knowledge to help you parent and help your child. I especially like God is Always Good, this book is perfect for children ages 4-8 and helps to comfort children through showing different situations where they may be scared as well. I love that each situation also has a corresponding Bible verse that you can remind your child of.

unnamed

 

This is a really sweet book, and I really enjoyed reading it to my girls, but also the communication and questions that came up as we were reading were invaluable. Kids can even read to each other!

 

Tips for Parenting Fearful Children

{Read a few pages HERE and Buy your copy HERE}

 

Also enter here to win your copy:

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway
TommyMommy-new1

 

As a Tommy Mommy I received a copy of this book. I am not compensated and all opinions expressed in this post are, as usual, my own.

Fresh Footwear Style for Back to School for the Whole Family

This is a sponsored post in partnership with Rack Room Shoes, all opinions are my own.

 

While DaddyB and I admittedly aren’t returning to school {props to parents who do!!}, we tell our girls that school is their job and well, our jobs keep us pretty busy too.

Just because the four of us are busy doesn’t mean we don’t want to have a fresh look for our whole family.

My childhood memories of Back to School shopping always included a couple of pairs of shoes if we were able to afford it.With my girls I like to buy them one pair of dress shoes and one pair of sneakers to start the school year off right.

We headed to Rack Room Shoes to take a look at what they had available, knowing they always carry really fun sneakers, great Fall boots, and cute dress shoes too.

(It’s safe to say they had a very fun, stylish first day of school. Shoes by Rack Room Shoes.)

First Day of School Shoes MommyB

Back to School Shoe Shopping for Kids

After several very methodical rounds of “eenie-meenie” we were able to land on these adorable, light-up sneakers (they even have an on/off button!)

Our dress shoe search didn’t end up quite the same, however Rack Room Shoes delivered, literally.

We chose a great ballet flat style, but unfortunately none were in stock in the store. With Rack Room’s Ship2Home service, we were guaranteed that the style and size shoes we were looking for would be delivered right to our front door, no having to return to the store or drive to another store.

Unfortunately, the shoe style didn’t fit my girls long and narrow feet, but the return policy at Rack Room Shoes made it super easy (and not stressful) for me to take the girls back in and start our dress shoe search again. During that trip we were able to find two pairs of mary jane type dress shoes in the exact sizes we needed, {maybe these were the shoes we should have picked out all along.}

At the end of our search we ended up with two great pairs of shoes for the girls {in the same brand and style} and a happy mom too!

Back to School Shoes Girls MommyB

Back to School Work Shoe Shopping for Mom and Dad

Following that same note, I wanted in on freshening up my footwear for my job too. I decided I would get a pair of dress shoes for meetings and events and a pair of fun sneakers for my job as mommy and errands.

 

Back to School Mom Job Shoes

 

DaddyB got the dress shoes memo but since he spends a large portion of his time at work, fittingly so, he freshened up his look with a couple of pairs of dress shoes.

The styles and prices at Rack Room Shoes made it really easy and affordable for our family of four to buy several pairs of quality shoes. We really enjoyed our experience shopping with Rack Room Shoes. The store was clean, associates were helpful and friendly, the return policy and Ship2Home are Ah-mazing, and the styles and discounts are pretty awesome too.

Next time our family makes a shoe purchase I know where we are headed… Rack Room Shoes.

Fresh Footwear Style for Back to School for the Whole Family @myrackroom MommyB

 

Have you ever shopped at Rack Room Shoes?? 

 

For more information on Rack Room Shoes locations, discounts, and styles head to their website: rackroomshoes.com, also follow them on Facebook and Twitter!

 

Be sure to enter my Back to School Must Haves Giveaway featuring a $50 Rack Room Shoes gift card!

Looking for what’s hot in Fall Footwear Fashion?

or

Want to find out how to give back to your community with Rack Room Shoes?

 

This is a sponsored post in partnership with Rack Room Shoes. The thoughts and opinions expressed in this post are my own, yours may vary.

Rayovac Mobile Battery Power Pack Review

As an ambassador for Rayovac I have been compensated for this blog post. All thoughts and opinions on the products are my own.

As a busy on-the-go mom with a million things on my to-do list there are often things I forget like picking up bread at the grocery store or charging my cell phone.

Having an uncharged cell phone at home is okay, easy fix, however having an uncharged cell phone when I’m out of the house and not able to charge for various reasons can be a problem.

 

Flat Tire MommyB

 

Some of you know from my Facebook thread that last week one of my tires was flat. {Thanks to those of you who gave support and advice.} When I went inside to call my insurance company for roadside assistance I realized my phone was completely dead and I had to charge it before I could even make the call.

The thing that kept running through my head was how thankful I was that we were not stranded on the side of the road, with no cell phone.

That’s where Rayovac‘s newly released Mobile Battery Power Pack comes in handy. I could have easily charged my phone not needing to worry about being at home, near a charging station, or worrying about if I brought my car charger and in some instances {thankfully not mine} whether or not your car battery is working.

Rayovac Mobile Battery Power Pack Review #rayovacpowerblogger

Power Packs feature:

  • Availability for Apple and Android smart phones.
  • Small size for portability.
  • Reasonably priced at under $30
  • Holds enough power to recharge your mobile phone for 150 minutes of talk time
  • Ability to recharge the Phone Boost power pack 500+ times by using a USB charger
  • Holds charge for up to 6 months
  • Has 4 LED battery gauge indicators show charge and discharge status
  • Provices instant power once your device is plugged in
  • Has push button switch turns charger on – if the device inactive for 30 seconds, charger will automatically turn off to save battery power
  • Comes with a limited product warranty

You can see why this product is a must have, and potentially a life saver depending on the situation.

In my video you can see how easy to attach, charge, and detach to your own phone:

 

What are your favorite features of this Rayovac product??

I know for me, I won’t ever leave home without my Mobile Battery Power Pack because I’d rather be prepared and proactive.

For more information on Mobile Battery Power Packs visit Rayovac’s website: Rayovac.com

 

 

This is a sponsored post on behalf of my partnership with Rayovac. All opinions and thoughts expressed in this post are my own, yours may vary.