Tuesday, December 30

Rejuvenate with ReJavanate!


Reusable shopping bags have passed the "in" thing to do and, in my opinion, have simply become a "must-do."

I've had the chance to try a few different options on the market, and recently found my favorite. The ReJAVAnate bag is just cool-for a variety of reasons.

ReJAVAnate bags are made from burlap from coffee roasters that would have otherwise went straight to a landfill. That's just a smart way to recycle and eliminate a large source of waste.

(Did you know that coffee is the second largest commodity in the world and a resulting 800,000 tons of burlap are out into landfills every year? I was surprised to find that out, too!)

The company works with individuals with bags developmentally disabled individuals through The Arc to hand make the ReJAVAnate bags, providing the rest of us with a sustainable way to reduce paper and plastic bag consumption.

I took the ReJavanate to the grocery store with the me to grab some stuff, and was impressed with the roominess. I managed to fit 2 boxes of cereal, a bag of baby carrots, a head of romaine lettuce, and a bottle of juice. There was even room for a handful of boxes of Jello!

And as Rachel from Honeychunks pointed out to me, I even get a five cent bag credit for every reusable bag I bring in. Sweet!

I'm really loving this and think you will, too. It would definitely be a great way to bring in the New Year, wouldn't it?

ReJavanate is offering two of my winners the chance to win one Grower Logo bag (like mine!) each! To enter, visit the ReJAVAnate sister site at Buy Green and leave a comment telling me which item you are most interested in seeing reviewed next.

Entries will be accepted until midnight, EST, Jan. 7, 2009 and the winner will have four business days from the announcement date to contact me with their information or an alternate will be selected.

Additional extra entries are also available if you:
*subscribe to my RSS feed and comment letting me know you did so.
* Blog about contest and link to this post.
* Non-bloggers can email three of their friends about the contest at berriesweet.info (at) gmail (dot) com and CC me on the email. Girl Scout's honor that I will never bother these sweet people. I promise!
* Grab my Berrie Sweet Picks button and place it on your blog page. I'll check!
* Follow me on Twitter! (nickname: berriesweetest)
* Tweet the contest leave a comment with your username telling me what you said to your "tweeple"!Please note all entries MUST include a valid email address to be considered for the drawing! That means that well, all entries must include an email address to be considered valid. Simple enough, right? ;)

Sunday, December 28

Don't pack up the summer dresses! Just add Skid Pants!

Buttercup and I absolutely love our skid pants from Honeychunks! It's a great accessory to pair with a summer dress or a pair of shorts for a cute and practrical winter outfit!

video

Friday, December 26

Who wants to get "fiddled"

I know...she's cute, right? And as the mother of this adorable little Buttercup, I ask you: Is it possible to make this image any more adorable than it already is? Seriously!

Normally, I would say no. I mean, I am her mother, after all.

But then I found out about Photo Fiddle, and got ****this in the mail....


...and realized that it is entirely possible to improve upon perfection. ;)
With Photo Fiddle, the possibilities are endless. You just upload your photo of choice and then fiddle your way through the variety of options (modern, abstract, oil, sketch, Warhol-like pop art, airbrush, comic book, and more) and the end result is a stunning actual pain-on-canvas rendition of your photo.
I loved the concept, but didn't really have a true appreciation for the genius of Photo Fiddle until I got my package on my doorstep. Inside the box was this absolutely beautiful 12" by 18" canvas painting of my baby girl, and I couldn't wipe the smile off of my face the rest of the day.
The image we submitted, and that Photo Fiddle well, fiddled, was from our trip to the Toledo Zoo this past summer. My father died last winter, and my aunts and uncles on his side of the family were afraid that our connection to his side of the family might have been buried with him. That is as far from the truth as things can get, but still...
So one Friday my 10-year-old cousin called and asked if we wanted to take a drive to the Toledo Zoo the next morning with Buttercup and his mom and dad. I thought of all the things I had to do: work, laundry, cleaning the house, blogging...and quickly realized none of it mattered for the next 24 hours. What did matter was a fun-filled day with family that means more to me now than ever before.
So we packed up, drive from our home in Metro Detroit to meet my aunt and uncle at their home, and then piled up in one vehicle for an early morning trip to the zoo on a perfectly sunny day.
We had a great day and saw the entire zoo with me snapping photos on the digital every moment I could. This one we happened to capture in the Butterfly House. Buttercup's daddy was holding her close and as I went to snap a photo of the two of them, she turned and looked straight into the camera as the flash went off.
It was perfect.
I loved the photo to begin with, and still do. But there's just something magic about the Warhol-like canvas waiting to go up in Buttercup's new room. It's a memory that I will always hold on to. And thanks to Photo Fiddle, it's a memory that will be passed down for generations to come.
So *shuffling feet*...um, who might wanna maybe win a chance at a $50 gift certicate to get one of your own photos fiddled like I did? The 12" X 18: stretched canvas I got is priced at $59.95, and is perfectly sized for our little house, so this is a great giveaway to try for! (Thank you, Photo Fiddle!)

To enter, visit Photo Fiddle's site and then leave me a comment telling me which artistic style you would choose for your photo if you are selected the winner.
Entries will be accepted until midnight, EST, Jan. 9, 2009 (OMG! My first 2009 contest!) and the winner will have four business days from the announcement date to contact me with their information or an alternate will be selected.
Additional extra entries are also available if you:
* Write a dedicated blog post with your selected photo to fiddle and a description of your memory and why it's a memory worth saving on canvas. The blog post must link to Photo Fiddle and to this blog post, letting your readers know about the contest. Oh, and don't forget to leave me a comment with the link to your blog post.
*subscribe to my RSS feed and comment letting me know you did so.
* Blog about contest and link to this post.
* Non-bloggers can email three of their friends about the contest at berriesweet.info (at) gmail (dot) com and CC me on the email. Girl Scout's honor that I will never bother these sweet people. I promise!
* Grab my Berrie Sweet Picks button and place it on your blog page. I'll check!
* Follow me on Twitter! (nickname: berriesweetest)
* Tweet the contest leave a comment with your username telling me what you said to your "tweeple"!Please note all entries MUST include a valid email address to be considered for the drawing! That means that well, all entries must include an email address to be considered valid. Simple enough, right? ;)
Sweet! Now go get fiddled!

Monday, December 22

Forget envy! Turn green with pride!

So are you "green?" Do you try to do your part to help protect our planet for future generations by preserving its natural resources?

Yes and yes? Sweet!

Now, take a look in the closest mirror and see if you have actually turned green as a way to show the world that you are doing your part! (Yes, I'm kidding...you can put the compact down now.)

But seriously, though, wouldn't the concept of turning green be a great way to help bring home the point of conserving natural resources for our kids? A new book series from The Little Environmentalists does just that, and from a kid's point of view, to boot.

"I'm Turning Green" shows how the little things we do, like turning off the water as we brush our teeth, can make a big diference! Check out Buttercup enjoying the story for the first time as her Abuela reads it to her!

video

I love this story, and I am pretty impressed that 18 mth-old Buttercup not only sat through the whole book, but eagerly requested a second reading (and sat through that one, too!)

And in case you're wondering, Little Environemtalists are a company worth promoting. It's refreshing to see a such a positive for kids reinforce the importance of "going green" with their dedication to producing environmentally-friendly products. All books are printed using 100 percent recycled paper that is 1200 percent post-consumer waste and chloring free. And if that wasn't enough, the ink is eco-friendly, too.

Can it get any better than that? Retailing for $7.95, "I’m Turning Green" can be found at The Little Environmentalists and Amazon.

So who wants to "go green" with their kids? One lucky U.S. winner will get the chance to bring the "green" home by leaving a comment on this post.

To enter, ask your children for their best eco-friendly tip and share it with my readers here! Entries will be accepted until midnight, EST, December 29 and the winner will have four business days from the announcement date to contact me with their information or an alternate will be selected. US entries only, please. What a perfect way to bring in the New Year!


Additional extra entries are also available if you:

* subscribe to my RSS feed and comment letting me know you did so.

* Blog about contest and link to this post.

* Non-bloggers can email three of their friends about the contest at berriesweet.info (at) gmail (dot) com and CC me on the email. Girl Scout's honor that I will never bother these sweet people. I promise!

* Grab my Berrie Sweet Picks button and place it on your blog page. I'll check!

* Follow me on Twitter! (nickname: berriesweetest)

* Tweet the contest leave a comment with your username telling me what you said to your "tweeple"!
Please note all entries MUST include a valid email address to be considered for the drawing! That means that well, all entries must include an email address to be considered valid. Simple enough, right? ;)

Sunday, December 21

Go eco-friendly when fighting your cold


It happens every time: Buttercup gets sick and I just bide time until I get whatever little germs she is carrying passed on to me and then end up with a worse cold than she had.


But now I've got a little extra-something in my mommy-arsenal to help get me back on track sooner (since we all know that the world does not stop spinning for sick moms, although I really think it should.)


I had the opportunity to try Cold-Eeze zinc lozenges, which are clinically proven to help reduce the duration and severity of a cold by 42 percent (or within three to four days). It's the Zinc itself that helps get your immune system boosted, and it also gets your system an extra kick in helping fight infections.


But don't make the mistake like I did of waiting for a full-fledged cold hitting you before giving these a try. My sister had much better results when she started the COLD-EEZE lozenges as soon as she felt her cold coming on. She just followed the directions and took a lozenge every two-to-four hours, and she cleared her cold much faster than I did (and didn't have to call in sick to work!)


As for me, I sat at home on the couch popping Organix Cough and Sore Throat Drops like they were going out of style. And even though I would have gladly forced down anything to get rid of my cough and soothe my throat, I liked the taste of these cough drops. I also like that they are the first over-the-counter cough and sore throat drops that are Certified Organic.


Try them out for yourself the next time a cold gets the better of you. Organix are available in Organix is available in Dark Chocolate Mint flavor, Purely Peppermint, Orchard Cherry and Golden Honey Lemon.


Oh, and eco-friendly bonus alert: Even the twist wraps of each lozenge is made from fully compostable corn starch! How's that for sweet?

Functional and cute: Babylegs


I have to say that since Buttercup has been born, I have never been a fan of tights. In my opinion, it's just too much of a pain to have to deal with that extra layer when it's time for a diaper change.
That's one of the reasons I am so in love with the alternative options, including Babylegs. They're cute, they're affordable, they're easier to deal with for diapered and EC babies, and you have so many more options available to you!
(I happen to love these for turning a summer dress into a stylish winter outfit, complete with a long-sleeved onsie or even another a pair of Babylegs and boots!)
Babylegs come in a variety of designs and patterns, and can be used from newborn to as far as your imagination can take you with your kids. Some suggested uses from Honeychunks are:

*Baby legs
*Kid legs
*Kid arms
*Adult arms
*Adult legs
*Soccer layer
*Football layer
*And more!
My only complaint with Babylegs is that they tend to run shorter than other brands out there, so for long-legged kiddos like Buttercup, so you lose out on a bit of leg coverage. But the variety of options cancels out that one little complaint. In fact, now that her legs are so long, I prefer to use them on her arms with a pair of Skid Pants to cover her legs from top to bottom. (For newborns, though, these are a great option!)
Babylegs are available for $12.00 per pair at Honeychunks.
Honeychunks, my favorite little online boutique (run by a waork-at-home Mom), is offering one lucky reader their choice of one pair of Babylegs (everyone say "Thank you!") For a girl, might I suggest the "tickled pink" pattern? Sooo cute!
To enter, visit Honeychunks and leave me a comment describing one item OTHER than babylegs you would like to see reviewed from her store AND which babylegs you would prefer if your comment is selected the winner. Comments must contain both in order to be considered valid.
Entries will be accepted until midnight, EST, December 28 and the winner will have four business days from the announcement date to contact me with their information or an alternate will be selected. US entries only, please.

Additional extra entries are also available if you:
* subscribe to my RSS feed and comment letting me know you did so.
* Blog about contest and link to this post.
* Non-bloggers can email three of their friends about the contest at berriesweet.info (at) gmail (dot) com and CC me on the email. Girl Scout's honor that I will never bother these sweet people. I promise!
* Grab my Berrie Sweet Picks button and place it on your blog page. I'll check!
* Follow me on Twitter! (nickname: berriesweetest)
* Tweet the contest leave a comment with your username telling me what you said to your "tweeple"!

Please note all entries MUST include a valid email address to be considered for the drawing! That means that well, all entries must include an email address to be considered valid. Simple enough, right? ;)

Friday, December 19

Breastfeeding with confidence with the Milkscreen Home Test


Breast is best for baby and I know this. But as hard as I tried, three hospital visits for severe mastitis in Buttercup's first six weeks put an end to my efforts and we made the switch to formula.
So when Mom4Life asked for me to review their Milkscreen Home Test for Alcohol in Breast Milk, I almost said no. After all, how could I accurately review a product if I could not even say that I had used it?
That's when I decided to contact my friend Lisa, whose baby is the same age as Buttercup. She has been a champion breastfeeding Momma since day one, and she happily agreed to give me her thoughts on the Milkscreen product.
But before I share Lisa's thoughts, a little background on the product might help.
The Milkscreen Home Test by Up Spring Baby, which was featured on the CBS talk show, "The Doctors," is described as an easy-to-use two-minute test that detects alcohol in breast milk. The premise? Instead of "pumping and dumping" after a night out with friends or even just a glass of wine with dinner, you can first try the Milkscreen to find out if your body has metabolized the alcohol or if it is still in your system. The guesswork is gone, and you now whether it is safe to breastfeed your child, or if you truly do need to "pump and dump"and instead pull out some frozen breast milk for the scheduled feeding.
Now, on to Lisa's thoughts:

"OK, here goes. Ease of use: Super easy. The box that the Milkscreen strips
come in is big, but the strips themselves are in small flat sealed envelopes.
Totally easy to slip in your purse or diaper bag if you’re going out. I was
worried that I would need to drag out my pump in order to use them, but all you
have to do is saturate a very small pad. I was able to hand-express a few drops
of milk and saturate it easily. It’s easy to read the results too. The pad turns
dark if there is alcohol in your milk. There is a paper included in the box to
compare against to determine whether or not the alcohol is at a safe level or
not.

Accuracy: The results seemed accurate. After a few glasses of wine over a
period of a few hours, the pad was dark. I also tested when I hadn’t been
drinking at all, and the pad never changed colors.

The one negative thing I will say is that I think that the strips are
engineered to be too sensitive. They are designed to change colors if your blood
alcohol is over 0.02%. If you read the enclosed information, it says that blood
alcohol levels of 0.03% are associated with a change of behavior on the part of
the baby – they take in less milk after mom has been drinking. But honestly, is
it a big deal if your baby takes in slightly less milk when you have the
occasional drink? Obviously, it could lead to failure to thrive with a young
baby if you are drinking every night, but if you’re drinking every night,
breastfeeding probably isn’t a good idea anyway! I prefer
kellymom’s test:
“Current research says that occasional use of alcohol (1-2 drinks) is not
harmful to the nursing baby… In general, if you are sober enough to drive, you
are sober enough to breastfeed.

Most states consider you “sober enough to drive” if your blood alcohol
level is under 0.10%, so you could miserably fail the Milkscreen test and still
be considered sober enough to drive, and therefore breastfeed. I would love to
see the Milkscreen test give a more accurate indication of the exact blood
alcohol content. Certainly, if I were at 0.08% or 0.09%, I’d avoid nursing. But
I’ve been in situations where not nursing would be very, very inconvenient, and
there, I might choose to nurse if I were only at 0.02% or 0.03%, knowing that
one night of mildly alcoholic milk might cause my daughter to eat a
little less or sleep a little poorly, but would have no long-term effects on her
health.

All that said, I might still pick up some of these strips (for business
trips). I often end up pumping after I get back from dinner, where I’ve had a
drink or two. I sometimes dump that milk because I’m just not sure if it’s safe
or not, so having Milkscreen would give me more confidence to keep the milk if
it is OK. Also, I might get them when I have another baby, since alcohol in
breast milk is more of a concern for newborns (whose livers are immature and have
trouble processing even small amounts of alcohol) than for older babies.

I hope that makes sense and that I don’t sound like I’m compromising my
daughter's health in any way. Overall, I think the strips work as advertised,
and it’s just up to each individual mom how much she’s concerned about alcohol
in her breast milk and the potential effects on her baby."

From my own short-lived breastfeeding experience, I only had one glass of wine here and there after my daughter had gone to sleep for the night, knowing that my body would have metabolized the alcohol with plenty of time to spare before she needed to be fed again. I was having way to many breastfeeding issues to even consider "pumping and dumping" for a
glass of wine, so I played it safe just because I didn't think I had any other options.

But I didn't have the Milkscreen to rely on to let me know if I was in the
"danger" zone and I wasn't comfortable guessing with a newborn. Based on Lisa's thoughts, I would definitely recommend trying this product out if you are a breastfeeding mother who enjoys the occasional alcoholic beverage, and I thank Lisa for her time and honesty.

*The Milkscreen Home Test for Alcohol in Breast Milk is available at Mom4Life. Prices are as follows: 20-pack for $19.99, eight-pack for $9.99, and three-pack for $4.99.

Monday, December 15

Chico bags=chic green


I am not the greenest of mommies, but I do try! Since Buttercup has been born, I have started adopting new habits to set a good example, such as not running the faucet while I brush my teeth, recycling, and making sure all lights are turned off when I exit a room.

I also started using reusable shopping bags once I learned how bad plastic bags are for the environment. Sure, I'm human, and sometimes I rush into the grocery store for a few quick things with the big reusables I got from Ikea left in the back of my mini-van, so I decided to look for a more Pauline-proof way to keep my green-streak going while shopping. ;)

Why use Chicobags?
One reason is the genius carabener clip that allows for attaching to diaper bags, purses and belt loops. Never shop without your chico again!
Two: They are great for the environment by reducing waste.
Three: It doesn't happen in Michigan, but I hear that some stores offer a credit on your shopping bill for being good to our planet.
Four: They are just cool looking and come in a variety of colors to match your mood!
Five: You can get your for only $4.95 per bag with FREE SHIPPING from Honeychunks!
So really, what's stopping you? Get a chico!

Friday, December 12

Take two: Metro Detroit-home of THE BEST COOKIE contest!


When is the last time you had a cookie so good that you wanted to hide it?
Here in Metro Detroit, we are lucky enough to have the homemade chewy goodness of Johnny B's Cookies, located on Mack Avenue in St. Clair Shores.And their cookies?


OMG. Seriously....they are almost indescribably good.

Their best-known cookie, of course, is the chocolate-chip chewy. With it's crispy outer edge and super chewy center, it's got to be the best chocolate chip cookie I have ever tasted. My other favorites include their peanut butter, peanut butter bomb. and betsey's lemon shortbread bars.The owners say they have the best cookies in the world, and I'd have to agree.
They use the finest ingredients, no preservatives, and their cookies are made fresh daily by hand.

I know.

For $18, they will ship a dozen of their cookies to anyone in the United States--now wouldn't that make a super sweet Christmas present for a special someone? Johnny B's cookies are also a wonderful idea for corporate gift baskets, special occassions, holiday baskets, and more.

Now for the fun part: if you live in Metro Detroit, listen up! I've got a great giveaway, courtesy of Johnny B's Cookies, offering one winner one dozen of a variety of cookies. It's a perfect opportunity to save yourself some time on preparing a dish to pass for one of your holiday dinners, or a great hostess gift for Christmas or New Year's Eve!

This is the SECOND one-week contest, so this is your last chance for 2008!

To enter, you MUST live in the Metro Detroit area and be able to drive to Johnny B's to pick up your prize. The first contest starts today and entries will be accepted until midnight, EST, on December 20. All I ask is that you leave me a comment with your city of residence, a valid email address or Twitter ID, and share with me what your plans for your cookies if you win! Are they a gift? Or are you going to hide them?

Wednesday, December 10

A new boon in sweet toys

You all know I love me some boon, right? I swear that my blog is sometimes a continuous commercial for their stuff, but I can't help it: nine times out of ten, it's just awesome stuff!

And here's a secret: It's about to get even awesom-er....and yes, I have declared "awesome-er" as the official word of the day.

I just got word that boon is offering a sneak peak on their new bath products which, by the way, are so new that they aren't even on the boon site yet! Check out the boon Facebook group and tell me what you think of the new goodies!

Tuesday, December 9

Go ahead-play with you food!

How often were you told as a kid to stop playing with your food? Too many times, right?


Well, what if I told you that it was okay, for you and your kids, to play with your food together?


I just finished my vlog review of the Shape-its Food forms and loved it! Check it out!




video

Shape-Its food forms are made from a high-quality aircraft aluminum that doesn't lose shape, works with any shapeable food, doesn't rust, is dishwasher safe, and oven safe to 350 degrees! And at only $16.99 per food shaper kit (I mis-spoke in the vlog review!) it's a great buy.

Now here's your chance to win a set of Holiday Shape-its for you and your kids!

To enter, visit Shape-its and leave me a berrie (read: comment) telling me which Shape-its set you are most interested in aside from the Holiday set.

In order to try and get this in your hands by Christmas, entries will be accepted until midnight, EST, December 12 and the winner will have four business days from the announcement date to contact me with their information or an alternate will be selected. US entries only, please.

Additional extra entries are also available if you:

* subscribe to my RSS feed and comment letting me know you did so.

* Blog about contest and link to this post.

* Non-bloggers can email three of their friends about the contest at berriesweet.info (at) gmail (dot) com and CC me on the email. Girl Scout's honor that I will never bother these sweet people. I promise!

* Grab my Berrie Sweet Picks button and place it on your blog page. I'll check!

* Follow me on Twitter! (nickname: berriesweetest)

* Tweet the contest leave a comment with your username telling me what you said to your "tweeple"!

Please note all entries MUST include a valid email address to be considered for the drawing! That means that well, all entries must include an email address to be considered valid. Simple enough, right? ;)

Monday, December 8

Tickatoo: I see you!

I love online boutique shopping, and have come to find some of the coolest little web-based businesses with stuff for mom and baby that I wouldn't be able to find at big box stores.

One cute little place tp check out online is Tickatoo.

1) The name is downright cute!

2) Tickatoo is bound to carry something you'd love to get for yourself, a new baby, a homeschooled-child, a breastfeeding mom...and the list goes on!

Well, hang on to your Santa hats, everyone, because Tickatoo is offering one lucky reader a $25 gift certificate goof towards the purchase of any item on the site! It is, however, important to note that this contest is open internationally, and some items cannot be shipped. So here's my public service announcement telling whoever wins to check with Molly over at Tickatoo on what you'd like to use your prize for. ;)

To enter, visit Tickatoo and leave me a berrie (read: comment) telling me which product you would use your gift certificate for if you won (and yes, you are allowed to change your mind later.)

Entries will be accepted until midnight, EST, December 16 and the winner will have four business days from the announcement date to contact me with their information or an alternate will be selected. US entries only, please.

Additional extra entries are also available if you:

* subscribe to my RSS feed and comment letting me know you did so.
* Blog about contest and link to this post.
* Non-bloggers can email three of their friends about the contest at berriesweet.info (at) gmail (dot) com and CC me on the email. Girl Scout's honor that I will never bother these sweet people. I promise!
* Grab my Berrie Sweet Picks button and place it on your blog page. I'll check!
* Follow me on Twitter! (nickname: berriesweetest)
* Tweet the contest leave a comment with your username telling me what you said to your "tweeple"!
Please note all entries MUST include a valid email address to be considered for the drawing! That means that well, all entries must include an email address to be considered valid. Simple enough, right? ;)

Camping gear: one berrie sweet Christmas present

It's rare that I offer a giveaway here without having first tested out the product in order to give you all a head's up on the latest and greatest-but I had to make an exception with this one (and I am sure no one is going to be complaining. ;)

Landbridge Toys recently contacted me asking if I thought my readers would be interested in the Haba Terra Kids Camping Lamp . I said, "Um....YES!"

So here are the details on what looks like a pretty cool Christmas gift for one lucky kiddo!

The Haba Terra Kids Camping Lamp works without an outlet...all the kids have to do for camping trips and blanket tent adventures in their rooms is move the crank to get the generator to produce electricity. It also comes with a snap link alarm whistle, a compass, and instructions. All for $32.
So who wants in on the contest?
To enter, visit Landbridge Toys and leave me a berrie (read: comment) telling me which other product you think your kids would love. why you think your kids would love. Entries will be accepted until midnight, EST, December 16 and the winner will have four business days from the announcement date to contact me with their information or an alternate will be selected. US entries only, please.

Additional extra entries are also available if you:

* subscribe to my RSS feed and comment letting me know you did so.
* Blog about contest and link to this post.
* Non-bloggers can email three of their friends about the contest at berriesweet.info (at) gmail (dot) com and CC me on the email. Girl Scout's honor that I will never bother these sweet people. I promise!
* Grab my Berrie Sweet Picks button and place it on your blog page. I'll check!
* Follow me on Twitter! (nickname: berriesweetest)
* Tweet the contest leave a comment with your username telling me what you said to your "tweeple"!
Please note all entries MUST include a valid email address to be considered for the drawing! That means that well, all entries must include an email address to be considered valid. Simple enough, right? ;)

Sloppy Baby = functional fashion


Anyone who knows me knows how sentimental I am. I've got my Curious George stuffed animal from my baptism; my baby shoes, dresses from Mexico I wore as a child, and the beautiful blankets my grandmother made for me.

And one day, I'll pass it all on to Buttercup. I would, however, like to include a few things that were "just for her" in her little hope chest of memories to look back on one day, and the gorgeously soft blanket and adorable matching burp cloth and bib set we just received from Sloppy Baby are definitely being saved.

Sloppy Baby designs and produces their line of baby gear for the-well, sloppiest-of babies and the hippest, coolest moms--like us (who happen to love machine-washable stuff!)

I have to admit that this one was a very pleasant surprise for me. I mean, I knew that Sloppy Baby was sending us a gift set to review, but not until I melted in comfort when I rubbed the luxe fabric blanket against my face and caress the satin-edge, did I realize how truly special this product line is.

Anyone can make a blanket for a baby or a toddler. But sloppy baby has done more; they've made a little bit of baby bliss that is big enough to cover a smaller baby and small enough for the bigger ones to drag around as their lovies. Dimensions are just 21 " x 21".

And the matching bib/burp cloth set? Yay for that! Now I finally have a bib worthy of covering up her special occassion and holiday outfits that I'm proud to have included in family photographs. And their functional, too. With a 100 percent cotton exterior that is lined with fleece for extra absorbency and the option to reverse it for a new look, it's a great Christmas gift idea for the new baby or new mom in your life.

We received the beautiful Samantha Deluxe Gift set, and I love the chocolate and pink color combination. And best of all, it's all made in the USA.
$68 for gift set.

Sunday, December 7

PKRS: Rocking it out for the Holidays


I want to be a little kid again. In a princess gown, bopping to the funky beat at a PKRS concert, to be precise. (But I'd settle for a PKRS concert in town so I could take Buttercup and pretend to be enjoying the music solely for her benefit.)
For those of you wondering what I am rambling about, PKRS is short for Princess Katie and Racer Steve, the coolest, hippest, funkiest, swingiest (it's a word, people...at least for this blog post), sweetest kid rock band in the history of rock bands with princesses and race car drivers who happen to, in a word, rock.
Buttercup and I got to check out their Fast & Feisty CD a while back, and I am not ashamed to admit that I "Woot Woot"-ed with glee when I opened the most recent delivery, containing the "Princess Katie & Racer Steve Live! Revved Up & Ready to Rock" DVD! I was wearing my last clean shirt, the dishes were about to topple out of the sink, and my vaccuum was wondering when, if ever, it was going to feel useful again, but I forgot about all of it and immediately swooped Buttercup up and ran to the TV with the PKRS DVD in hand.
And wow.
You've got drop-dead incredible singing. real musicianship dressed up in whimsical and fun costumes that appeal to their fan-base, tons of laughs, and enough audience participation to make me feel like we were really there.
We LOVED the live concert DVD, and Buttercup (who happens to be a princess in training) certainly had her share of bopping in her 18-mth-old-signature style while Mommy sang along to most of the songs and danced alongside her.
If you are wondering what to get your kids or are searching for a stocking stuffer, I really, really, REALLY recommend this DVD. Even if it is your first introduction to the rockin' world of PKRS, you will not be disappointed. Instead, you and your kids will be coming back for more.
Because until we get a chance at a live, in-the-flesh, PKRS concert, Buttercup and I will be wearing this DVD out.
Oh, and before I forget, stop by and check out Princess Katie's blog!

Saturday, December 6

Get Excited about Books!

Everyone is asking me what to get buttercup for Christmas and I have two set answers: Clothes and books.

"Okay," said one of my sisters. "What books do you want for her?

Well, I wasn't expecting to have to provide specific answers, so I pointed my sister to Excite Books and told her she could buy Buttercup a monthly membership. I'll have to wait until Christmas morning to find out if she took my advice, and can honestly say that I am really hoping she did.

So what's Excite Books? It's the brainchild of a pilot-turned-business man that combines the thrill kids get out of mail addressed just to them with the love of reading a new set of books each and every month. You sign up for one, two, or three age-appropriate books to be shipped to your door each month, and then when your kids tire of the books or their interests just change, the books can be donated to a needy library with Excite Books pre-addressed and pre-paid envelopes! Donate some or all of the books, or keep them if you wish--the point is to spread and keep the love of reading alive in our children.


Talk about a win-win situation (and a gift you can really feel good about giving for Christmas!)

Monthly prices are $4.99 for one book, $9.99 for two, and $15.99 for three and shipping and handling is $4.95 no matter what package you decide on.


Buttercup is too young to know what who Blake Michael, the 11-yr-old host of Cartoon Network's Fried Dynamite is, but older children will certainly relate to Excite Books celebrity spokeskid! He appears on the Excite Books site wearing a large exclamation point to signify the excitement of reading books.


The Excite Books introductory package offers 3 excite books, 1 educational activity, and 8 free gifts. And except for the $4.95 shipping, it's all free! You can choose a package for infants to teens, plus puzzle and cookbooks for all ages. And you can chart your child's reading progress with Excite Books reading completion stickers in their own Reading Progress Calendar!


Buttercup is an avid little reader, so this is all perfect for her and a great way for me to keep her busy and stimulated. We got to try out the toddler introductory package, and Buttercup received a matching items book, a bath-time book, and a book with the characters from Monsters Inc.


Her favorite right now, of course, is the bath-time book. Check out how the book is already helping her grasp the concept of colors!


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So...anyone else wants to get their kids excited about reading? Excite Books is offering one of my lucky readers the chance at an introductory package with three free books in the age-group of your choice plus the eight free gifts!

To enter, visit Excite Books and leave me a berrie telling me what you think about the program. why you think Your entry also must include the age group you'd like your prize to be for, if your comment is selected the winner. Entries will be accepted until midnight, EST, December 13 and the winner will have four business days from the announcement date to contact me with their information or an alternate will be selected. US entries only, please.

Additional extra entries are also available if you:

* subscribe to my RSS feed and comment letting me know you did so.
* Blog about contest and link to this post.
* Non-bloggers can email three of their friends about the contest at berriesweet.info (at) gmail (dot) com and CC me on the email. Girl Scout's honor that I will never bother these sweet people. I promise!
* Grab my Berrie Sweet Picks button and place it on your blog page. I'll check!
* Follow me on Twitter! (nickname: berriesweetest)
* Tweet the contest leave a comment with your username telling me what you said to your "tweeple"!Please note all entries MUST include a valid email address to be considered for the drawing! That means that well, all entries must include an email address to be considered valid. Simple enough, right? ;)

Friday, December 5

Building character with Life's Building Blocks

Remember how effective the ideals of Jiminy Cricket were in helping us distinguish right from wrong when we were kids? Well, today's kids have a ficticious friend to help guide them-their own little angel on their shoulder.

Thanks to the award-winning company,Life's Building Blocks, Buttercup and I have spent the last few days playing with Zaki, the character chameleon. He's cute,he sings songs and tells stories about character and making the right choices, and speaks in an Australian accent that sure got Buttercup's attention.

Zaki also has color-changing fins on his back which help kids, ages 3-6, determine when they should stop, slow down and think, or just go for it!

Buttercup loves her Zaki, and trust me when I say that I have listened to his rhyming stories and character-building fables so many times in the past few days that I have them memorized now.

Zaki retails for $30 and Buttercup approved for Christmas-gift giving!

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Life's Building Blocks also offers other age-appropriate products for older kids with stories and activity books about a group of friends in the thirs grade known as The Spruce Street Six. With stories and activities about the common ethical issue that kids face everyday-like why telling the truth is so important-the Spruce Street Six and Zaki are a great way for connecting with kids and helping them make better decisions for themselves.

With characters like Honest Jake, Jessica the Brave, Calm Carlos, Lauren Never Wuits. Jarrett the Just, and Kind Shawnie, it's easy to set a good example for our kids to follow.

Spruce Street Six books, geared for kids ages 6-10, retail for $5.99 and activity books, for ages 6-9, go for $5.99.

Now for the really cool part. I have three great contests to announce in just this post alone! Thanks to Life's Building Blocks, I am offering up one Zaki, one set of Spruce Street Six Chapter Books, and one set of activity books! I will be selecting one winner for each, so make sure your comment indicates which you would prefer if selected the winner.

To enter, visit Life's Building Blocks and then let me know why you think this would make a great gift for your child. Entries will be accepted until midnight, EST, December 12 and the winner will have four business days from the announcement date to contact me with their information or analternate will be selected. US entries only, please.

Additional extra entries are also available if you:

* subscribe to my RSS feed and comment letting me know you did so.

* Blog about contest and link to this post.

* Non-bloggers can email three of their friends about the contest at berriesweet.info (at) gmail (dot) com and CC me on the email. Girl Scout's honor that I will never bother these sweet people. I promise!

* Grab my Berrie Sweet Picks button and place it on your blog page. I'll check!

* Follow me on Twitter! (nickname: berriesweetest)

* Tweet the contest leave a comment with your username telling me what you said to your "tweeple"!Please note all entries MUST include a valid email address to be considered for the drawing! That means that well, all entries must include an email address to be considered valid. Simple enough, right? ;)

Thursday, December 4

Metro Detroit: Home of the Best Cookie in the World

When is the last time you had a cookie so good that you wanted to hide it?

Here in Metro Detroit, we are lucky enough to have the homemade chewy goodness of Johnny B's Cookies, located on Mack Avenue in St. Clair Shores.

And their cookies? OMG. Seriously....they are almost indescribably good. Their best-known cookie, of course, is the chocolate-chip chewy. With it's crispy outer edge and super chewy center, it's got to be the best chocolate chip cookie I have ever tasted.

My other favorites include their peanut butter, peanut butter bomb. and betsey's lemon shortbread bars.

The owners say they have the best cookies in the world, and I'd have to agree. They use the finest ingredients, no preservatives, and their cookies are made fresh daily by hand.

I know.

For $18, they will ship a dozen of their cookies to anyone in the United States--now wouldn't that make a super sweet Christmas present for a special someone? Johnny B's cookies are also a wonderful idea for corporate gift baskets, special occassions, holiday baskets, and more.

Now for the fun part: if you live in Metro Detroit, listen up! I've got a great giveaway, courtesy of Johnny B's Cookies, offering two winners one dozen each of a variety of cookies. It's a perfect opportunity to save yourself some time on preparing a dish to pass for one of your holiday dinners, or a great hostess gift for Christmas or New Year's Eve!

I am running two separate contests for one winner each, with each contest lasting for a full week. To enter, you MUST live in the Metro Detroit area and be able to drive to Johnny B's to pick up your prize. The first contest starts today and entries will be accepted until midnight, EST, on December 11. (I'll repost this contest on December 12 to mark the start of the second contest!)

All I ask is that you leave me a comment with your city of residence, a valid email address, and share with me what your plans for your cookies if you win! Are they a gift? Or are you going to hide them?













Who wants to win a $250 shopping spree?

How'd you like to help me help you win a $250 shopping spree at Sugarplum Dreams? Yep, you read that right! Now let me explain...

I recently posted a coupon code for 15% percent off on purchases over $50 through the end of the year (berrie15). Well, I hope you are using it, because whichever blog sends the most traffic at Sugarplum Dreams during the Christmas season will get a $500 shopping spree as a reward!

So how exactly does that translate into $250 for you? Simple! Once you have used your discount code to place an order at Sugarplum Dreams, all you have to do is send me an email at berriesweet (dot) info (at) gmail (dot) com telling me what you ordered and your total cost (to verify the order was a minimum of $50) and also provide me with an order number, should you have it available.

And if I receive an email telling me that I won $500 for a shopping spree at Sugarplum Dreams, I will randomly choose one winner from qualified entries to share my good fortune with! How's that for havin' each other's backs?

So get shopping! It's a great place for memorable Christmas gifts for the little ones in your family.

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 3

Joobles...the Fairest of them all

Joobles.

Just the word itself makes me giggle like a little kid.

But the story behind it makes me one proud momma knowing that Buttercup is cuddling with a 100 percent organic knit-toy whose purchase benefits fair trade.

The founders of Fair Indigo have a new line of soft and squeezable pals for your little ones-just in time for the holidays! Meet Mel the Monkey (Buttercup already did. You can see our vlog below!) and his sweet little playmates, all of which are handcrafted in Peru where artisans have hand crafted a menagerie of stuffed animals under fair trade conditions. The company tagline-Responsible, Sustainable, Adorable-is proven time and time again in the environmentally-friendly dyes and organic cotton grown right in Peru!

And if that isn't enough to warm your little green heart, the Joobles are made with cotton grown free of pesticides, insecticidess, herbicides, fertilizers, or other harmful chemicals; workers are paid fair wages; and free breakfasts and school supplies are donated to workers' children!

I mean, really, did you ever imagine that one toy could make such a difference in the lives of so many?

And as I look around our house, I see exactly what I promised myself would not happen: Too much junk. Too many overpriced and forgotten toys and stuffed animals I will gladly give away to charity when the time comes.

But sweet little Mel the Monkey here with his friendly little heart-shaped face and adorable blue limbs and tail? Oh no,...he's staying for as long as I can help it. And I hope to explain to Buttercup why he's so important when she gets old enough to understand.

Joobles retail for $29 each and can be found online at Fair Indigo or at Oompa Toys.

(You can stop holding your breath now because we do have a contest!)

To enter, visit Fair Indigo and click on the Fair Trade button (look for it-it is there!). Your entry will consist of leaving me a comment about what you have learned about the concept and why it is so important to patronize businesses who practice it. You must also include your first and second choice Jooble in your entry for it to be considered valid. Entries will be accepted until midnight, EST, December 10 and the winner will have four business days from the announcement date to contact me with their information or analternate will be selected. US entries only, please.

Additional extra entries are also available if you:
* subscribe to my RSS feed and comment letting me know you did so.
* Blog about contest and link to this post.
* Non-bloggers can email three of their friends about the contest at berriesweet.info (at) gmail (dot) com and CC me on the email. Girl Scout's honor that I will never bother these sweet people. I promise!
* Grab my Berrie Sweet Picks button and place it on your blog page. I'll check!
* Follow me on Twitter! (nickname: berriesweetest)
* Tweet the contest using the term "fair trade" leave a comment with your username telling me what you said to your "tweeple"!

Please note all entries MUST include a valid email address to be considered for the drawing! That means that well, all entries must include an email address to be considered valid. Simple enough, right? ;)
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Tuesday, December 2

The Tuesday Ten: Madcapz's Carrie Bell


After a marathon blogging day, I realized it was time for another Tuesday Ten! Today's interview is with Carrie Bell, President and Owner of the berrie sweet Madcapz company. Read on to learn more about the woman behind the baseball capz with a lot of ladylike flair!

Q.: So tell me a little about your company and the inspiration behind it.
A.: Madcapz is really a labor of love.
A few years ago, I was diagnosed with Grave's Disease (an autoimmune disorder that affects the thyroid, which in turn affects every other part of you). The only exercise I could handle was going for walks and I always reached for one of my husband's baseball caps because I was losing my hair (another symptom of Grave's Disease). But wearing a man's baseball cap with a sports team logo or company logo just didn't do it for me. So, I began my search for a feminine stylish baseball cap that I could enjoy wearing, would make me look great, and feel fabulous!
My search for this colorful fun women's baseball cap became an obsession with me: I scoured the malls, catalogs, and the Internet - all in vain. Finally, I decide to make one myself.
My friends loved the prototype cap. When my daughter said she wanted one I knew I was on to something. Madcapz was born!

Q.: So many good ideas never get past the idea phase...how did you make your business a reality?
A.: I just kept thinking that if I would wear a fun colorful baseball cap, others would too. And so I made a prototype and showed it around to friends and family who were all enthusiastic about it. That gave me the encouragement I needed to try and make this into a business. What followed was lots of research and work in finding the right resources - fabric houses, US factory to make the caps, and a website for selling them. I started out with just women's caps and now Madcapz are available in women's visors and kids' caps too!

Q.: What's the nitty-gritty on you? Come on! I want age, rank, and serial number!
A.: Do I have to start with age? Well, I'm turning the big 50 in a few weeks (gasp, sigh, yea! ha!). I live in Larchmont, NY and have two great kids, (my son is 15 and my daughter is 12), a very supportive husband, and very dear friends. When I'm not working on Madcapz (when is that?) I enjoy reading, hiking, cooking (and eating), and doing anything/everything with my family. Oh, yeah, and I have no previous experience running a business. I was a management consultant a long, long time ago.

Q.: Who's the brains behind the operation?
A.: I don't think it's brains as much as perseverance. Also, my husband is my biggest fan and strongest supporter - and that helps immensely!
Q.: What's your funniest mommyhood memory to date?
A.: My kids are 12 and 15 so I have volumes of funny memories, no one memory stands out. But let me just say here (because I can't find any other place in this interview to put this) that I think one of the most important ingredients in life, be it dealing with family stuff or work stuff, is to have a sense of humor. And, believe me, there are days when it's been hard for me to find the humor, but being able to laugh at life helps get you through it!

Q.: Glass half empty or half full? Or can you not tell because it already got spilled by one of the kids?
A.: At heart, I'm an optimist - so glass is half full. Although I do have days when I have to remind myself of that.

Q.: Secrets to success? Tips for making it through to tomorrow with our sanity intact? (read: how did you do it?)
A.: Keep plugging away. When life seems overwhelming I try to accomplish just one thing and often that gives me the boost I need to keep going. And stay positive about the business, even though it may not always be easy. Believing in what you are doing and believing that you can accomplish your goals is so important to success!

Q.: Sneaky chef or eat-those-veggies-now! What's your parenting style?
A.: When my kids were little I used to put veggies and fruit on their plates, whether they ate them or not. Eventually they tried them, sometimes it was a hit and sometimes not so much. But their tastes change over time (still are changing) so it's important to continually offer them different foods. Now my kids eat pretty much everything.

Q.: What's on the menu for dinner tonight? (and can I come over?)
A.: Grilled rib eyes, double stuffed potatoes (kids love them) and salad (with my husband's homemade dressing!)

Q.: Where can my readers find you online?
A.: http://www.madcapz.net/. come check out my fun unique Madcapz. Visitors from Berrie Sweet Picks get a 20% off discount if you use "berrie" in the coupon code. Good until Dec. 14!

Monday, December 1

See Buttercup fall in love with Kai

I love shoes. And I have a major addiction to baby shoes.

Seriously, Buttercup has had more shoes in her short life than I probably have purchase in the last 10 years! And while I was totally devoted to a certain brand who shall remain nameless until a short while ago, I am now a total convert to the See Kai Run line of shoes for little feet.

These shoes really are the cutest, most modern, most flexible, and highest quality I have come by in my 18 months of devoted research. And it certainly helps that I love the story of Mom Creates Hip Namesake to Meet Needs Even Hipper Son. Just two years after getting the company up and running, See Kai Run was a hit in children's boutiques across the country and continues to win over parents and tots alike when they try them for themselves.

I hate spending full price on anything clothing-wise for Buttercup, and many of her clothes are hand-me-downs or bargain-basement specials. But I won't skimp on her shoes. It's too important to me to ensure her little feet are given the flexibility essential right now, and See Kai Run shoes are honestly so easy to flex I can bend the shoe in half with one hand without any effort at all! the soles, which are made from an extremely flexible rubber, are perfect for outdoor use allowing for little feet to flex in all the right places, and Buttercup loves the easy on velcro-straps.

For our review, Buttercup and I got to try the beaut-ee-us Elaine Mary Janes ($40), which are absolutely adorable with their mismatched line of silver stars on each shoe. These are perfect for the holidays, and go with everything.

I've had them since October, and so far have used them for family pictures in early November and then again on Thanksgiving. Buttercup will wear them again for Christmas, and then all bets are off and she can use them anytime her little heart desires.

We also got to take a look at the new Smaller line of soft-soled booties made specifically for babies 0-18 months. The Mazi style ($32)arrived on our doorstep and was a perfect choice for my nine-month old nephew, and will fit him for quite a while. My sister loves that her little man has a kickin' pair of shoes with a major dash of style and I love that little Aiden's feet are just as flexible as if he wasn't wearing a thing!

And perhaps my favorite feature of all the See Kai Run shoes is the butter-soft leather used in their design. It looks classy, expensive even, and yet they are priced no higher than many of their competitors who use lesser materials.

Bottom line? I heart See Kai Run. And I know you will, too.

Thanks to my new fave shoe company, I've got a great contest for two winners to win ONE PAIR each of either the regular See Kai Run line and the Smaller line. And it['s winners choice on style and size! To enter, visit See Kai Run and leave me a berrie (read: comment) telling me what style and size you would prefer if selected a winner. And remember, this is a two-in-one contest for one winner each for the two styles I just reviewed! Entries will be accepted until midnight, EST, on December 8 and will ONLY be considered if they include a valid email address. Winner has 4 days to contact me after the announcement has been made, and please-U.S. entries only.
Additional extra entries are also available if you:
* subscribe to my RSS feed and comment letting me know you did so.
* Blog about contest and link to this post.
* Non-bloggers can email three of their friends about the contest at berriesweet.info (at) gmail (dot) com and CC me on the email. Girl Scout's honor that I will never bother these sweet people. I promise!
* Grab my Berrie Sweet Picks button and place it on your blog page. I'll check!
* Follow me on Twitter! (nickname: berriesweetest)
* Tweet the contest and leave a comment with your username telling me what you said to your "tweeple"!
Please note all entries MUST include a valid email address to be considered for the drawing! That means that well, all entries must include an email address to be considered valid. Simple enough, right? ;)
(Oh, and PLEASE forgive the awkward positioning of the photos above. Blogger would not cooperare with me today and I was running out of patience. :-)

Smart-e-Bear and pals are perfect for Christmas!



We love the UPS man over here, and his latest delivery is now one of Buttercup's all-time favorite toys. And for those of you with kids ages 2 and up, take me advice and keep reading. You won't be disappointed.

Let me start with the fact that I love my iPod. But since Buttercup has come along, it has kind of been taken over by her playtime and bedtime play lists. I don't even remember the last time I downloaded anything that wasn't made just for kids! And like any kid, Buttercup also loves stuffed animals. The bigger and softer to cuddle with, the better.

So what does that have to do with anything, you ask? Well, what if I told you there was a great new kid's product that basically combined the best of the iPod world with the best of stuffed animals (and got mommy her iPod back?)? That's where Smart-e-Bear (and his friends Smart-e-Cat and Smart-e-Dog) come into the picture.

This award-winning, technology-friendly from Intellitoys is amazing, and I highly recommend one for any savvy kiddos. Moms (and Dads) just connect the Smart-e-Bear and friends to your computer, click for uploading your choice of "playdate" and then hand over for fun and cuddling!

Smart-e-Bear and friends are designed for non-reading 2-6 year-olds, and I really can see the appeal. First of all, you can actually set up your Smart-e-pal of choice to greet your child BY NAME when you turn him on for playtime. I was shocked beyond belief to see my daughter's real name in the selection, and Buttercup just cracks up with a big ol' smile every time her Smart-e-Dog says "Hola!" and invites her to play in Spanish! (also a very appreciated option for this bilingual mommy blogger!)

Her faves? Singing along to "Head, shoulders, knees, and toes," and bopping along to "Five Little Monkeys." She's also enjoying playing games, hearing stories, and interacting with her super smart dog! And the best thing is that Buttercup's interests change, I only have to hook back up with the USB and change up her listening options, guaranteeing that this is a toy that will truly grow with her.

Check out our vlog of Buttercup and Daddy playing with her new Smart-e-Dog:

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Smart-e-Bear and friends retail for $79.99 and are available at Toys R Us, Target, and Amazon, as well as specialty toy stores. stores. But before you go out and buy one, why not try to win one here?

I am so happy to offer my readers the chance at one Smart-e-pal of choice! To enter, click here and then click "Learn More" to take a tour that explains Smart-e-Bear, and then leave me a berrie (read: comment) telling me what feature interests you most. You also can enter by checking out the "Musical Artists, Games, and Stories" section and telling me what you'd download if you had Smart-e-Bear home right now. Entries will be accepted until midnight, EST, on December 8 and will ONLY be considered if they include a valid email address. Winner has 4 days to contact me after the announcement has been made, and please-U.S. entries only.


Additional extra entries are also available if you:


* subscribe to my RSS feed and comment letting me know you did so.


* Blog about contest and link to this post.


* Non-bloggers can email three of their friends about the contest at berriesweet.info (at) gmail (dot) com and CC me on the email. Girl Scout's honor that I will never bother these sweet people. I promise!


* Grab my Berrie Sweet Picks button and place it on your blog page. I'll check!


* Follow me on Twitter! (nickname: berriesweetest)


* Tweet the contest and leave a comment with your username telling me what you said to your "tweeple"!


Please note all entries MUST include a valid email address to be considered for the drawing! That means that well, all entries must include an email address to be considered valid. Simple enough, right? ;)

Vicks: Helping moms through cold and flu season




Getting sick is no fun at all, and it's actually why I'm trying to play catch-up now with my blogs, contests, and reviews! Friday Buttercup had me up until 6 a.m. with vomiting and an evil diaper rash brought on by her upset belly. And then when she started getting better on Sunday, I got whatever she had (and so did my sister!). The result was not fun.

I had what must have been a 24-hour flu bug, complete with all the bells and whistles. I think I must have slept through most of the day, and when it came time to check my temperature in the dark with Buttercup sleeping next to me on Sunday night, I could only thank Vicks Comfort Flex InSight Digital thermometer.

Instead of having to reach for the light each time and chance waking up a sleeping toddler, I was able to rely on the large color-changing display to help me determine of I had a high temp (red for readings 101.0 degrees F or higher), a mild one (99.0-100.0 degrees F), or if it had finally broken (97-98.9 degrees F).

It also takes accurate temps in as little as 8 seconds and has a memory feature to help you keep track of how you and your little ones are doing compared to the last time.

Parents of infants have the option of taking the temperature rectally, as is recommended by pediatricians, and under the arm for children four and younger. The comfort-flex tip gives you the option, and makes it a great choice of thermometer no matter the age of your child.

The Vicks Comfort Flex Insight Thermometer is available at Walmart for $9.48.

Vicks also sent a Germ Free Warm Mist Humidifier for us to try, and I immediately set it up in Buttercup's room. Here's a quick vlog of her reaction to her new Humidifier.



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I used to think that humidifiers were only needed when a child was sick, but I've learned a lot since reading through the product packaging. Keeping the humidifier going in Buttercup's room will help improve her overall health during the colder months and keep her room more comfortable. And should she get a cold or the flu again, all I have to do is add a bit of Vicks VapoSteam for the added benefit of a vaporizer.

This really is an incredibly mom-friendly product, with two easy-to-change 1 gallon tanks that run for up to 24 hours (or three nights without refilling), easy to use controls and an automatic shut-off feature to help control humidity levels, and is filter free with dish-washer safe water trays! Even more important is the patented germicidal UV chamber which safely kills up to 99.999% of bacteria, mold and spores.

The result is air that is easier to breathe and proven relief from colds and flu.

The Vicks GermFree Warm Mist Humidifier (V790) has a suggested retail price for $99.99 and is available at Babies R Us, RiteAid, Meijer and other major retailers and drug chains nationwide.

Get more information at the Vicks website.