April 23rd, 2014 at 10:47 am
Is your little guy ready for summer? When you want to have some fun in the sun, an outfit from this 3-piece set for newborn boys is a great choice! The adorable green creeper features a “Tough Lil’ Guy” monster truck graphic with plaid appliqué that matches the shorts perfectly. The matching tee features striped sleeves and a sporty, soccer-themed dragon graphic with “Go for the Goal!” The plaid shorts have decorative pockets and an elastic waistband so your little one will be comfortable all day. You get all this for only $11.64!
You can find this and other Garanimals products in Walmart stores and on Walmart.com!
April 22nd, 2014 at 9:00 am
Looking to do your part to help be kind to the earth? How do you know which products are greener than others or what company is rated better in terms of ethics and safety?
What if there was an easy way to look up a product and find out if it is organic, fragrance-free, or produced using best practices like fair trade, recycled material, or honoring human rights?
GoodGuide.com is a website that can give you all of this important information about thousands of products, from diapers to laundry detergent to pet food to cars. Using a ratings system, their team of environmental scientists evaluate the products on a scale of 1 to 10 so you can easily tell which products make good sense environmentally, and which ones you might think twice about.
The site is very easy to use and provides lots of good information. You can customize the criteria to reflect the categories that mean most to you, whether it’s health, environment or social responsibility. And if you use the mobile app, you can scan the product code in the store and know right away if the item fits the bill. If you install the transparency filter on your web browser, it will reveal the GoodGuide rating of any item you shop for online.
This is pretty handy stuff and very enlightening. Get the real scoop on the product’s footprint, not just the marketing babble.
Happy Earth Day!
April 21st, 2014 at 12:24 pm
Now that you’ve started tackling your spring cleaning, it’s a great time to add some new touches to your home to freshen up the look!
Painting isn’t generally on top of peoples’ to-do lists, but a coat of fresh paint or even a change of paint color can make a huge difference in the feel of a room. Even just painting the same color over all the dirty handprints, scuffs and marks makes a room feel entirely new!
I love the look of pillows on a couch, but felt like they always got in the way. Recently I have embraced the use of pillows in my living room and have noticed what a nice touch they bring to the room. They accent the room with pops of color, texture, and print.
Changing the color or look of your window coverings can completely change the look of a room. Sometimes just cleaning them can do a lot also. To revive drab curtains, take them down, remove hooks, and run them through an air-fluff cycle in the dryer with a damp towel (to attract the dust) for 15 minutes, and re-hang immediately.
Re-Invent Your Wall Decor
Have you had the same things hanging on your wall? Rearrange them. Take everything down and move them around the room or even to a different room. Add a couple new things to change out colors.
This is an expensive change, but makes a drastic difference. You don’t need to change everything, just change out one key piece and see how new everything looks!
Buy a new lamp or lamp shade. Transform your old lamp by painting it to bring that key color into the room.
Change Throw Rugs and Hand Towels
Tired of seeing the same throw rugs in the bathroom or by the front door? Use rugs to bring some color to a room.
Change Out Your Bedding
Liven up your bedroom by changing your bedding. You can buy a completely new set, or just add some throw pillows. Make the bedroom a relaxing place that you enjoy spending time in!
Your home should be filled with things you love that relax and energize you. Take some time this spring to make your home somewhere you LOVE to be!
April 18th, 2014 at 10:20 am
My boys’ favorite part of Easter, next to looking for their Easter baskets, is dyeing eggs. Every year we make five dozen hard boiled eggs to paint, dye, color, and shrink-wrap. The hardest part of this is learning how to effectively hard boil eggs. Here is my method:
Tip: Eggs that are several days old are easier to peel.
1. Lay the eggs in a single layer in a pan covered by at least and inch or two of cold water, which will help with cracking. Turn the heat up to high to bring the eggs to a boil.
2. Once the water starts to boil, remove the pan from the heat. Reduce the heat to low and return pan to burner. Let simmer for one minute. If you miss the eggs starting to boil then you can skip this step because they have most likely already boiled for a short while.
3. When a minute has passed, remove the pan from the heat, place a cover on top and let sit for 12 minutes. Remove the eggs and place in a bowl of ice water until the eggs are cooled. Strain the water and store the eggs in a covered container. Hard boiled eggs last about 5 days in the refrigerator.
Once the eggs are made you can use various methods to dye them. There are many different egg decorating kits available at stores that are easy to use. Last year, I covered a slew of ways to decorate your eggs. I made the egg in the picture simply by dyeing it yellow and using sharpies to make it into a chick. See what fun you can have with your eggs?
How do you like to decorate your Easter Eggs?
April 17th, 2014 at 9:22 am
Easter morning is almost here and the kids are so excited! On Christmas morning there are presents under the tree, stockings have been filled, and cookies have been eaten. But, if the Easter Bunny hides all the presents, how do they know that he or she has arrived?
When I was younger, all the empty candy dishes on the dining room table were magically overflowing with treats. My mom had a huge sweet tooth, so it wasn’t a problem having all that candy around our home. I am not a huge candy fan, so I came up with alternatives. At our house, the Easter Bunny leaves two empty buckets with a note of how many eggs to find. You can also leave some carrots on a plate and in the morning, the kids will wake up to see the Easter bunny has taken a bite!
April 16th, 2014 at 9:09 am
Easter is this Sunday and it’s the perfect time to consider what you’re going to have your little ones wear. They’ll be running around looking for easter eggs and playing with family or friends, so it’s important that they feel comfortable, but look holiday appropriate at the same time. These two outfits are perfect for Easter, one of the most colorful holidays of the year! The boys outfit consists of khaki cargo shorts (you can go with pants if it’s cooler in your area), and a nice white polo with blue and green stripes. The girls outfit features an adorable ruffle scooter with a colorful polka dot tee. Add a sweater, and even a pair of leggings to go under it if it’s chilly.
You can find these items in Walmart stores or on Walmart.com!
April 14th, 2014 at 2:27 pm
Did you know that April 13 through 19 is National Library Week? Books are so important to a child’s development. Besides teaching them how to read, they also foster bonding, creativity, and imagination. Libraries have a lot to offer their communities, and they are a great learning resource for families. Check out your local library this week and see what kind of events and classes they offer for your little ones. In honor of National Library Week, here are some of the most popular kids books of all time that you can check out at your local library or bookstore!
- Where the Wild Things Are – Maurice Sendak
- The Giving Tree – Shel Silverstein
- Goodnight Moon – Margaret Wise Brown
- Green Eggs and Ham – Dr. Seuss
- Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs – Judy and Ron Barrett
- The Very Hungry Caterpillar – Eric Carle
- Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day – Judith Viorst
- Guess How Much I Love You – Sam McBratney
- Pat the Bunny – Dorothy Kunhardt
- Love You Forever – Robert Munsch
- The Lorax – Dr. Seuss
- Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? – Bill Martin Jr. and Eric Carle
- Harold and the Purple Crayon – Crockett Johnson
- Chicka Chicka Boom Boom – Bill Martin Jr. and John Archambault
- Corduroy – Don Freeman
- Stellaluna – Janell Cannon
- Oh, The Places You’ll Go – Dr. Seuss
- Strega Nona – Tomie dePaola
- Curious George – H.A. Rey
- Jumanji – Chris Van Allsburg
- The Little Engine That Could – Loren Long and Watty Piper
- The Tale of Peter Rabbit – Beatrix Potter
- If You Give A Mouse A Cookie – Laura Joffe Numeroff and Felicia Bond
- The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales – Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith
- The Runaway Bunny – Margaret Wise Brown and Clement Hurd
- The Rainbow Fish – Marcus Pfister and J. Alison James
- The Snowy Day – Ezra Jack Keats
- Madeline – Ludwig Bemelmans
- The Napping House – Audrey Wood and Don Wood
- The Cat and the Hat – Dr. Seuss
- The Polar Express – Chris Van Allsburg
- Hop on Pop - Dr. Seuss
There are so many other great books, both classics and new, that kids around the world enjoy every day. Which is YOUR favorite?
Photo Credit: American Library Association, www.ala.org
April 11th, 2014 at 8:38 am
One of my favorite things about Easter is the meal. It’s the one time a year where we eat my favorite meal, breakfast, with lunch as well! There are so many different things you can do with brunch. Here are some things to consider when planning your meal.
Buffet or Served Plate?
Personally, I like to offer my brunches as a buffet. This way, everyone can choose what the foods they like best, and they can control how much they take of each. Seconds are much easier to handle as well.
Planning Your Dishes
When choosing food types, you want to consider the time it will take to make them…simpler recipes will allow you to enjoy your party more. Some things that are easy to make ahead of time are breakfast casseroles, pancakes, quiches, scrambled eggs, waffles, french toast, and fruit and vegetable platters. Also think about things like taco bars or waffle bars, where your guests or family can personalize them and put them together. I also like to include a deli meat selection, pulled pork, or shredded chicken or beef for build-your-own sandwiches. Ham, lamb, and chicken are typical Easter meats, so you can offer one of these as well…especially if brunch is the main meal you’re planning for the day. Here are some categories you can incorporate into your brunch:
- Egg dish
- Pancakes, French Toast, Waffles, Crepes
- Meat Dish
- Potato Dish
- Bread Dish (Easter bread with dyed hard boiled eggs is a nice idea!)
- Light Pasta Dish
- Salad or Fruit
Drinks to Serve
Have fun with the drinks – think about coffee, juices, water, and milk. You can also make fun punches or alcoholic drinks like mimosas, bellinis, and sangrias for the adults.
Brunches can be lots of fun, but portions are difficult to control, so make sure you have enough food on hand. My guests always get excited when they hear i’ll be serving brunch – the BEST of breakfast and lunch!!
April 10th, 2014 at 12:07 pm
As a child, my favorite part of Easter was the egg hunt in our backyard. My siblings, cousins and I would search the entire property for colorful eggs left by the Easter bunny! Now, as an adult, I love watching the kids have that same experience. Some of you may have only a few children and the hunt coordination is fairly easy, but if you do a multi-family egg hunt it can get pretty complicated…especially when it comes to keeping the peace when the kids have free reign and goodies are involved! Here are ten egg hunt tips to make sure everything goes smoothly.
- Decide on a set number of eggs each child will get. I recommend plastic eggs so you can hide prizes inside, but some people like to hide real eggs.
- Choose a variety of prizes to fill the eggs with. Make sure things are age appropriate. Some good ideas are: Change or dollar bills, candy, erasers, whistles, stickers, hair clips, small toys, temporary tattoos, bracelets, etc. You can also have one or two special eggs for each child with a note inside that they can trade in for a big toy that wouldn’t fit. You can find some great, affordable prizes at your local Walmart!
- If you have a small scale egg hunt, give each child an egg color or size so there is no confusion as to which eggs they should look for. If you have a large scale egg hunt, decide on egg colors or size per age group, i.e. Ages 2-4 can only take red and yellow eggs, ages 5-9 can only take blue and green eggs, etc. That way, they will get the appropriate goodies for their age group and you know how to appropriately hide them so that they’re not too difficult for little ones, or too easy for older ones, to find.
- Set an appropriate time for the hunt. Keep in mind when it starts to get dark in your area and allow the kids ample time before sundown. Also keep in mind that the kids will want to play with and eat their prizes right away, so plan it around your meals.
- Decide on the area you will hide the eggs in and, if necessary, use flags to create boundaries so the kids don’t go looking in the wrong places. It also provides an element of safety so you can make sure that they don’t wander off or go into areas where they might get hurt.
- Write down where you hide the eggs. I can tell you from experience that it’s easy to forget after hiding a bunch of them!
- Hand out baskets to make it easy for the kids to collect their eggs. A fun way to prepare for this is to let them decorate and personalize their egg hunt baskets a day or two before Easter!
- Designate egg hunt “moderators” who can help the kids find the eggs if they have trouble and get frustrated. For little ones, they can guide them in the right direction.
- Designate a few people to handle photography and take pictures of the kids hunting for the eggs. These moments are precious and will be special memories to look back on!
- Make a rule that no one can open their eggs until each child has found all of their eggs. Patience is a virtue!
What do YOU have planned for the egg hunt this year? Share with us on our Facebook wall!
April 9th, 2014 at 9:00 am
Alright moms, this one’s for you! This great three-piece set comes from our infant/toddler girls line and is perfect for mixing and matching when the weather gets warmer. The top is the outfit centerpiece, with cute flutter sleeves and a bright, rainbow phrase, “Mom is my best friend.” The dark pink bike shorts are stretchy and comfortable, with a cute lace hem. The skort is in a fun zebra print with ruffle accents at the hem.
You can find these products in Walmart stores and on Walmart.com now!