Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Thanks Irene

So with the news of hurricane Irene coming our way, we were all very shook up by all the "warnings."  With a few days of not taking it all so seriously, we finally did go and get prepared two days before.  My husband and I went and gathered up all the necessities in the case of an emergency.  I made sure I had enough ready to eat food for my son, and all his medications.  It was a scary feeling.  After speaking to my family that also live in New York City, we all decided that if things were to get really bad, the safest place was our apartment.

Our windows face the back of the building, we are on the fifth floor, and our neighborhood is on higher ground.  Everyone came over Friday night, with the unknown future but we all were determined to make the best of it.  We had enough food, and drinks to last us a good while if we needed it.  Once everyone was settled, we all enjoyed a huge dinner that I had prepared for everyone, reminded me of a good old family get together.  We had three toddlers running around, the men just relaxing watching t.v., us women playing cards.  Then, we opened up a bottle of wine, and played Pictionary as a family.  It was so fun to laugh, and play with each other we almost forgot why we had all had gathered.

The night passed by fast, our parents were asleep, and so were the kids.  But my husband, siblings, and I stayed up as we listened to every loud sound of wind and rain hitting the windows.  We were so relieved to see the outcome of the hurricane turned tropical storm.  We had some rain coming in through the sides of one of our windows from the strength and amount of rain, but glad to report that as the only "damage."  In the end we had very little sleep, but a night we won't forget.  By Sunday afternoon, everyone had headed back home, and I was at the toy store with my little family.  The winds were still stronger than usual, but nothing unbearable.

So thankful to have been fortunate, just a reminder of who's in control.  Mother Nature.  Be kind to her people.  I joked that Irene is her daughter sent out to deliver a message to us, but..really!

Hope everyone that wasn't as fortunate is doing well, and will recover soon from everything.

And oh..thanks Irene for being kind to us, as many of us know it could have been worse...

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Day Baby Was Born™ - A New Web App From Tommie Tippee



Many of you know already that my son is three years old now from previous posts (here and here), and as he gets older I look back to when he was born and realize how much time has flown by.  I think back to when I was pregnant and it seems so far away, yet like yesterday!  If you are a parent, you may know what I mean?  It has been so long, so much has happened.  But I remember it like yesterday, I feel the emotions like yesterday.  As I am typing right now, I am feeling joy watching my baby boy asleep next to me.  I always joke around and say it is a high, a happy high, words can't describe, that I get when I think of the day he was born.  Ever had so much fun, laughing that you just get a happy high? *lol..well maybe you can relate? ^_^

I was in labor for hours as my contractions had started hours before I made it to the hospital.  I kept calling, trying to prevent getting there too early and getting sent back home.  Don't get me wrong I was in serious amounts of pain, and then I was fine, then back to serious amounts of pain, and back again for a very long time.  Apparently I'm very patient, and good with pain?! <Complete surprise to me.  After I finally made it to the hospital, I used no medications to help me dull the pain and at the time I thought I would die if I didn't, but once I heard my baby boy cry for the first time, the pain literally went away.  They put him on top of me right away and it was simply amazing to have him in my arms for the first time.  It was an incredibly emotional and magical time.  I felt like everything happened so fast, I couldn't believe it.  I still can't believe that this amazing little boy is my baby..my son! :D

He is my first and only little boy, and as much as I have many pictures of him.  I wish I had documented it all well.  Which brings me to the new The Day Baby Was Born™, free web app.  It is this very cool web app that let's you capture the very special moments ;) with ease by creating a story book.  It is perfect for us parents who just don't have the time to put it all together with a newborn.  Here's an awesome example of the app in use that I'm sure you'll love: sample story book.

Getting started with and using the app is much easier than creating a memorable story book on your own that you might start and never get to finishing being a new parent.  Which I am sadly guilty of...  If you are expecting, sign up, and try this new FREE app today.  Here's an image of what to expect on the home page.

With The Day Baby Was Born you can capture all that you want or just some of the following:


  • Facebook Wall comments and well-wishes by friends and family through pregnancy and birth announcements

  • Your pregnancy journal from each week of the journey to the birth day

  • News, facts and information from the day your baby was born

  • Your personal story and letter to baby to preserve forever the feelings from that day

  • It’s is a simple way to create a beautiful record of the world at the moment your baby arrived


To get the full effect of what you can do, you must see the sample story book.  I loved it, and really wish I had this with my baby boy.

This app has recently been launched by Tommie Tippee.  Keep updated by following @tommeetippee_na on Twitter and become a fan of Tommee Tippee on Facebook.

 
I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Tommee Tippee blogging contest for a chance to get a gift pack worth $50. For more information on how you can participate, click here.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Why I'm a Stay-at-Home Mom

I have been questioned as to why I am a stay at home mom before, I am because the risk out ways the loss of whatever I might earn financially.  We don't know anyone that has food allergies that are near us, that we actually physically know.  We have family that loves him very much, but nobody that really cares to learn what he is allergic to.  My husband and I have never had time to ourselves together.  We seriously have no one that can care for him.  Maybe as he gets older, but if people aren't confident in caring for him, then how could we take that risk.

So everywhere we go, we go together as a family, and if it isn't kid friendly, most times I stay home with my little one.  I know many parents couldn't imagine how this could be, but this is how our life is and what seems to be the only option.

As time to ourselves is important, it isn't an option, or at least a risk we aren't willing to take.  My mom passed away towards the end of my high school years, my dad remarried.  Point being grandparents aren't an option for babysitters for many reasons.  So we make the best of what we have, and I do enjoy my time with my son.  It's a tough situation, one that is hard to understand if you aren't in our shoes.  Every time we visited family my son used to break out in hives, and get an asthma attack where he would start wheezing if we stayed too long.  Luckily for now, that has improved.

I remember on his second birthday party he was running around with his eyes very much swollen with hives all over, and no one noticed?!  It was so strange that no one noticed, but they just didn't.  I didn't look for attention, I took care of him.  On his third birthday party a few weeks back, as fun as it was as I posted about it here, it didn't pass without an allergy incident.  He got really hot at the park started scratching, and got mysterious hives all over.  And in all this, there we are stripping our sons clothes off wiping him down, putting anti-itch cream, giving him Benadryl, all while our baby boy was crying.  I knew he didn't eat anything that caused this, it was just the heat...  What did everyone do?  They looked over, and simply asked "what happened?"  They genuinely didn't see it as a big deal, or realize what was going on.  I was so sad to see this, our closest family and friends can't figure out that it is an allergic reaction?!  No concern either!?  Another fantastic reason why I will not be dropping my son off anywhere so I can get time to myself or time with my husband.

When my son starts coughing or wheezing because of his asthma, or a hive appears anywhere on his body, I notice.  I am the one that knows how to create dishes for him so he isn't left out wherever we are.  I am not saying our friends and family don't love him, but they just don't understand.  I don't depend on anyone for this reason, my little boy is our responsibility.

So many of you are very fortunate to have someone to help, actually many of you are fortunate that your little one doesn't have food allergies.  Be sure to thank the ones that help you out.  :)

I can keep going on about the many reasons why I'm a stay at home mom, all really revolving around keeping my son alive.  The fact is food allergies is life threatening!  That scares me.

My son has food allergies to wheat, rye, millet, oat, banana, onion, garlic, dairy, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, shellfish, sweet potato, and maybe more all that are life threatening.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

GIVEAWAY: 2 Boxes of Enjoy Life Foods- Crunchy Cookies



I recently reviewed the Enjoy Life Foods crunchy cookies.  They come in Chocolate Chip, Double Chocolate, Sugar Crisp, and the Vanilla Honey Graham.  Doesn't it all sounds so good?  Well they are!  My husband and I really like these cookies.  It is so true to its name, it has a great crunch and really very good.  They crumble, they crunch, oh they are so good.  Since my review, I find myself in love with the double chocolate crunch cookie!  It has turned slightly chewy, and I love it.  It is like a two in one!  Hard to believe that they are allergy friendly.  Most important to me, is that it is really good without many, and most top common allergens.  They have simple real ingredients!  We love brands like Enjoy Life Foods that offer great varieties products that are safe for our son to enjoy.  My son is allergic to a long list of allergens, as you can see on my About page.
So important to know what's in your food, these cookies have no mysterious or strange ingredients! Check out the ingredient list for one of the cookies; Chocolate Chip.  They all have simple ingredients just like this one.  You also can check out the ingredient list on their site.  

A few important facts about Enjoy Life products:


  • Gluten free and allergy friendly.
  • Free of all top eight allergens: wheat, dairy, peanuts, tree nuts, egg, soy, fish, and shellfish.
  • And most products are also free of potatoes, sesame, sulfites, and casein.
  • No artificial ingredients, trans fats, or genetically modified (GMO) ingredients.

To learn more about them and other Enjoy Life products go to their site by clicking here: Enjoy Life Foods


Now one of you can win TWO boxes of these crunchy cookies, of your choice! Yayy!! :) 


They are SO good!  You know you love cookies!! 

How do you enter to win?

It's easy:  (Leave a separate comment for each entry) 
  1. Become a subscriber  (**only MANDATORY entry)
  2. Follow @ELFCeo on twitter.* ( leave twitter handle)
  3. Become a fan of EnjoyLifeFoods on Facebook.* (leave fb name or initials)
  4. Follow @daytodayMOMents on twitter. * (leave twitter handle)
  5. Answer: What other product do you want to try from Enjoy Life Foods site?
  6. Genuinely comment on any non giveaway post. (one comment per post, let me know which one)
  7. Tweet about the giveaway. Copy & paste: "I just entered to #win @ELFCeo Crunchy Cookies. Follow @daytodayMOMents & Enter here> http://wp.me/p1FnCk-9z Easy Entry! #GIVEAWAY RT" (up to 5 times a day, comment back with link)
  8. Share giveaway on your Facebook page, and leave link. (up to 2 times a day)
  9. Blog about this giveaway (worth 5 entries-leave a link)
  10. Add me to your blog roll (leave link)
This giveaway will end September 2, 2011.  Winner will be chosen at random and contacted via e-mail or twitter. You'll have plenty time to get many entries in! Good luck :D

*This giveaway is sponsored by Enjoy Life Foods. The sponsor is responsible for delivering prize to winner. My opinions may differ from yours.

And the winner is "denimorse" Congratulations! :)

Great thanks to everyone that entered! More giveaways to come!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Wordless Wednesday - 0_o


Didn't expect to see this right?

I know it's not winter..yet.  *LOL*  But where did the summer go?

Saturday, August 13, 2011

REVIEW: Enjoy Life Foods- Crunchy Cookies



Once again, I bring you Enjoy Life Foods.  I'm happy to give you guys a review of four of the newest items added to their great product line.
The crunchy cookies come in four different varieties; Chocolate Chip, Double Chocolate, Sugar Crisp, and the Vanilla Honey Graham. Unfortunately my son was not able to enjoy them, as we found out he is allergic to an ingredient or two.  It has millet and buckwheat flour both of which he hadn't tried yet.  I gave him a little to try and he got hives.   There are still products that you can have from Enjoy Life Foods, if you are also allergic to these ingredients, as my son does.  Please check out my "About" page to see the long list of foods my son is allergic to.

My husband and I tried all four.  They are as close as it gets to enjoying crunchy cookies allergy friendly.  Although my son isn't able to, many who are okay with the simple ingredients will surely enjoy it.

 We tried all four one by one, and my favorite was the Double Chocolate,  only because of the chocolate, otherwise we liked them all.  My husband liked the Sugar Crisp most, which was really good too.  We first tried the Vanilla Honey Graham cookies and I thought it had a crunchy and slightly chewy texture but still very good.  The rest of the cookies were very crunchy, perfect for dipping in dairy free milk, or enjoying just as is of course.  My husband and I don't have any food allergies and we liked it.  I'd definitely recommend you give these a try, and if you have any or many dietary restrictions, these are great as there are very few brands that offer varieties like this that are safe.  I'd also recommend before you look for them in stores or online websites, visit Enjoy Life Foods site to read the ingredients for each product you are looking to try.

A few important facts about Enjoy Life products:
  • Gluten free and allergy friendly.
  • Free of all top eight allergens: wheat, dairy, peanuts, tree nuts, egg, soy, fish, and shellfish.
  • And most products are also free of potatoes, sesame, sulfites, and casein.
  • No artificial ingredients, trans fats, or genetically modified (GMO) ingredients.
To learn more about them and other Enjoy Life products go to their site by clicking here: Enjoy Life Foods

*I received these items to review, but all opinions are a 100% my own.

Friday, August 12, 2011

REVIEW: Funrise Toys - Gazillion Bubbles: Bubble Cyclone

The Gazillion Bubble Cyclone  from Funrise Toys is just so fun!  From the day we got it, my son can't get enough.  It requires three "AAA" batteries that are not included, but after that you're all set!  It's allot easier and cleaner to have fun with bubbles, with a click of a button there are a "gazillion" colorful bubbles swirling out.  So much fun outside, and I even let my son create bubbles indoors too, I just couldn't resist.  Usually with the traditional 'blow your own bubbles' it gets messy and kids can't always have fun on their own, with this little toy they can.  You can hold it while bubbles swirl out, or place little base on bottom to set it down on a surface for hands free fun.  I even used it to cheer up my toddler sister that was missing her home when I was watching her for a few days, and so I can say it's great for cheering up little ones..and probably will work with adults too..*giggle*!  It's very well made, not to mention the Gazillion Bubble solution, that doesn't compare to any other!  Be sure to use their solution when you refill.  Awesome simple fun, I recommend this for anyone that wants to add some "bubbly" fun to their moments in life.
At Funrise Toys, you can learn more about this cool little item, and many more variety of fun toys.  They have a great selection of toys, and are a trusted "creator of fun" since 1987.  Check out all the selection of Gazillion Bubbles toys!  I think the Gazillion Bubble Cyclone is guaranteed to bring smiles, just look at how happy my son is in this photo! 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


*I received this item to review, but all opinions are a 100% my own.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Mysterious Hives

First an update; my sons cough still exists, and not quite getting better.  And in terms of asthma, don't want to jinx anything, so I will leave it with a mention.

So we spent our Saturday visiting the few close family we have, and our son had a good time seeing different faces, and playing with everyone.  Then Sunday, we spent it at home.  It was that dreaded time that comes around way to often; the time to do some serious cleaning.  I probably spent most of my day in the kitchen sorting and scrubbing through everything, and my little boy helped me along the way.

The day flew by since it was a busy productive day, and it was just about bed time when my son came in my arms in the living room as I was sitting on our sofa.  He settled in my arms, and fell asleep.  Only for me to look up and then down to see hives all around both his eyes.  I panicked, and woke him up, called for my husband.  A million things went through my mind, I woke him up because it isn't common for my little guy to just fall asleep in my arms so I even thought he passed out..in a bad way. :(  He barely falls asleep in my arms like that, not so much since I stopped nursing him to sleep a long time ago.  But he was fine, just strange hives all over causing both his eyes to look so much smaller, so scary!  I gave him Benadryl right away, and told him I loved him as I apologized for waking him up.  He responds with a tighter hug, and tells me he loves me too.  Just touched my heart with his sweetness.  Glad that he wasn't feeling too bothered by it.

I held him in my arms a little while longer as he dozed right back to sleep, and the hives fortunately although slowly, disappeared. The ironically well-known mysterious hives.  Most times don't know what caused it, but it comes at the most unexpected and always unwanted times.  It is of course never wanted.  The good thing is it goes away, but sadly it comes around.  It could be something he touched, something he ate, something..it's mysterious!  And so just another element of dealing with food allergies.  So relieved that it wasn't anything worse, and confused by the mysterious hives as always.

But the latest, right now, he is asleep dreaming sweet dreams, as he laughs in his sleep. :D

And now I'm off to dream with him! Zzzz...
*If you are here, reading this post, comment, subscribe, show me some love? Thank you for coming by*

Saturday, August 6, 2011

I'm Sure You're Not Alone!

The truth is life is not perfect.  And all moments aren't always so great.  For example my little boy has been coughing for the last two days.  Well, so what's the big deal, he just has a cold?!  It could easily just be a cold, but he has never just had a cold. :( Every time that he has gotten a runny nose, or cough it has always ended up with his asthma symptoms coming around and eventually ending up in the ER.  It never fails, and so I'm at a loss of sleep with my little boy in my arms, hearing him breathe for the past few hours.  Hoping to not hear or see his little chest pulling.  Another sad thing my little boy has to deal with, and my husband and I don't have asthma so it's all new to us too, just like his food allergies.  I just feel helpless, just to remember back to when he was able to even crawl/wobble, he would bring me his asthma mask when he didn't feel too well.  He knew he needed his nebulizer and at a very young age always knew and was right about his asthma symptoms coming around.

So I'm just venting away.  I am upset that my son has food allergies, and asthma.  I'm upset that as much as I try, he isn't able to really lead a normal childhood.  I feel helpless and want to take all of it from him if I can.  I grew up having none of these issues, I just feel bad.  Even with the facts, I wonder what caused him to have these issues.  I often blamed myself, wondered if it was my diet during pregnancy.  I'm past being upset and confused.  I am where I make every effort to make sure he isn't left out, and doesn't ever feel different in a negative way.  But there you have it, the not so secretive truth, I'm not happy that my son has food allergies or asthma.  I always find the positive in it all, but really yeah I'm upset.  I know how the world without any food allergies or asthma sees us, and I know unless you are in the same situation you can't really understand.  I don't expect anyone to understand or accommodate anymore.  But I still do feel sad with how the closest family members, and friends don't get it, and don't make an effort.  But this is my life, our life, and we are like every other average family.

As parents we try our best to give our children the best and most of us have our own issues to deal with.  Whether its food allergies, asthma, your kids throwing a tantrum, your kids not going to sleep at night, or your kids aren't learning as they should.  Whatever we might be dealing with...  We are stressed at times, but hide it with a smile.  We are discouraged at times, but give everyone else encouragement.

I certainly always focus on the positives, but once in a while, it's good to just voice it out, and be heard.  Whatever it might be, what's bothering you?  What do you want to just vent out about?  Feel free to comment anonymously, but one thing I promise you will be heard.  And remember it only takes one person to share, to find that you're not alone!  Click on the tab "Be Heard" anytime for support with any issues big or small.  Sure you got family and friends but sometimes they don't get it or you don't really want to tell anyone, so come on don't be shy and let it out, don't be all stressed by dealing with it by yourself! Because you're not alone!  ;) 

xoxo

Thursday, August 4, 2011

PARTY CITY - Cars Ultimate Party Kit - My Son's 3rd Birthday


This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Party City. All opinions are 100% mine.
We finally celebrated my sons third birthday.  It is the most darling age, because it’s the first year that he has anticipated his birthday party and talked about it everyday for almost a month.  So we knew we had to make it memorable, and fun for him.  Lucky for us we had Party City to help us do so.  We decided on the Disney Cars Party theme, and used the amazing Cars Party Supplies Ultimate Party Kit.  The Ultimate Cars theme party kit included everything needed for my son’s birthday party, here’s the long list :) : 
  • 16 Cars Lunch Plates  
  • 16 Cars Lunch Napkins
  • 16 Cars Paper Cups
  • 2 Plastic Table Covers 54 x 102
  • 16 Plastic Red Forks
  • 16 Red Spoons
  • 16 Red Knives
  • 16 Cars Invitations
  • 16 Cars Treat Sacks
  • 16 Cars Blowouts
  • 1 Cars Jointed Banner
  • 20 Royal Blue Balloons
  • 1 Royal Blue Curling Ribbon 66ft
  • 1 Buttercup Yellow Cream Streamer 81ft
  • 1 Holiday Red Crepe Streamer 81ft
  • 2 Cars Centerpieces
  • 16 3D Glasses
  • 24 Assorted Candy Stripe Birthday Candles 
  • 1 Cars Pinata
  • 1 Pinata Bat
  • 1 Pinata Blindfold
  • 1 Pinata Filler
Planning for a birthday party or any other party can be hectic sometimes, but Party City supplies, specially the party kits will save you lots of time and stress.  It’s a one stop shop for all your party supply needs.  You can always add-on more to the kit if you want to, like I did, I bought these cupcake trays from the Party City near me.  Having a cake or cupcakes in the same theme as the party theme, is always fun.  I have been going physically to the stores for the past few years for party supplies I needed but I have never been so well prepared before.  For example, this ultimate kit includes a pinata bat, we have never bought a pinata bat before usually used a random object, but it is so much more fun with a pinata bat!  My little baseball player swung the bat a few times and opened the pinata all on his own.  It also includes the pinata filler which saves an extra visit to the store.  Where else can you order a kit that literally includes everything you need, even invitations for the party?!  The fun 3d glasses that went with the napkins, table covers, and banner were a hit with everyone.  With everything that’s included in the ultimate kit, the price is unbeatable!  Of course, you can choose the items you want one by one too, and different party kits are available too.  Please note that party kits are only available online as noted on the website, although you can easily find all that you need from Party City locations near you.
If you have a hard time deciding on the theme or just need suggestions, they have party idea pages, click here for Girls Birthday Party Ideas and if you’re like us and have a little boy, you can find great info here Boys Birthday Party Ideas.  His birthday was definitely memorable and having the great fun theme helped!  He helped me set up the decorations and table before the guests arrived as you can see in the photo on the left.  We played water balloon toss and the water balloon colors matched the Cars theme as well to add to the fun, and fun sports like volleyball.  I suggest shopping at Party City, specially the kits, it will give you more time to worry about the other things at the party.  I had more time to make food allergy friendly cupcakes for my son’s birthday, that everyone loved.  And remember to have fun, include games that involve everyone like we did.  With this fun Cars Ultimate Party Kit, every direction you looked there was color, fun for kids and fun for us.  I couldn’t be happier with everything this great party kit supplied us with.  Parties are fun, but nothing beats having a great theme to go with it, so don’t forget to go to Party City or the website by clicking here Party City for your next fun party!


*I received items for the purpose of review, all opinions are my own. :)