Saturday, August 30, 2008

You'll Flip for this . . .

How would you like to win a Flip digital video camera ?! One of these sweet little gadgets is being given away by Deal Seeking Mom. Click over and leave her a comment with your best money-saving tip, and you'll be in the running for a Flip. Giveaway ends Sunday, September 7th.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Summer Memories: A Trip to SeaWorld

We didn't have any travel plans this summer, but we were lucky enough to take a day trip to SeaWorld; it was my first-ever visit and I can't wait to go again! The day was a long one for Pudding Pie, but she was a trooper. It rained on and off and we got pretty soaked, but it was so steaming hot, we welcomed the dousings. We watched a spectacular dolphin show and Pudding Pie, who adores dolphins, was riveted.

The dolphins do their thing.

Pudding Pie and Mommy watch in awe.

The highlight of the day was the much-anticipated Shamu show, and it was spectacular. The Killer Whales are magnificent and not only are their handlers just wonderful with the animals, they also have the best jobs in the world. I'd love to get up every morning and do what they do! I wish I could share great photos, but it was during this show that Pudding Pie could hold on no longer. I watched most of the show from the way back, while desperately trying to help Pudding Pie work through her mini meltdown. (Her Dad didn't get to see too much, he was sent to find the stroller so we could put the pooped one to bed.)

We got to feed the dolphins, we visited the huge aquarium, and we hung out at my personal favorite, the Penguin exhibit. Pudding Pie has a giant stuffed penguin at home and it rocked her world to see the real deal right in front of her!

Pudding Pie and Mommy check out the sharks.

We brought the stroller, but this was Pudding Pie's preferred mode of transport.

Of course, there are also the breathtaking, stomach-churning rides. Pudding Pie's dad went on a few, but I declined. My nephew persuaded me to go on one pretty tame ride and I did - under duress, and with the assurance that I would be forever cool in his eyes if I did. Pudding Pie loved the gently spinning paint cans, her first-ever ride!

The makings of a thrill seeker . . . more guts than her mama.

Like I said, it was a day trip, we got there as early as we could, had a blast, then made our way home and wearily fell into bed around midnight. Pudding Pie usually likes to wake up around midnight, but on this night she was kind to her mom and she didn't. In fact she almost slept through the night - almost!

*This post is being submitted in We Are THAT Family's Sizzling Summer Vacation Spectacle

Getting Out The Vote
Trisha at momdot is aiming to get herself a spot on the Hot Blogger calendar. It is my duty as a momdotter to get out the vote so, without futher ado, I give you a compelling reason:

The birth of Pudding Pie

Pudding Pie arrives. Note the dugs being administered to mom,
(bottom right).

Over at, they're asking for the story of your delivery as part of a contest they're holding. I could write pages on the biggest event of my life, but I won't subject to you that. So, as briefly as I can, here's the story of the delivery of Pudding Pie.

I worked a full day at work the day I went into labor, but my back ached all day and I could not get comfortable. Labor did not cross my mind, I was still almost two weeks from my due date so it couldn't be happening. I drove my hour commute home that evening and I couldn't get comfortable the whole trip, it was awful.

Once home, the contractions stepped up and the pain started to come and go at quite regular intervals. (Yes, this is when it dawned on me that labor was officially in progress.) And once I knew it was labor, the contractions seemed to get stronger and closer together . . . I think if I'd stayed in denial I may have last much longer without an epidural! After a few calls to my OB, she decided the contractions were close enough, and we sped off to the hospital.

This is the part where you get to see what a tough cookie I am. The minute we walked into Labor and Delivery, I started begging for an epidural; the nurses were getting me signed in and hooked up and I just kept urging them to stick that needle in. So much for working through the pain.

I got my epidural and sweet relief came quickly - but lasted briefly. As soon as the epidural began to work and I lost feeling in the contraction-wracked part of my body, I began to feel claustraphobic. I didn't factor in the whole helplessly-numb-from-the-waist-down feeling and just I hated it. I felt like a beached whale, I was convinced I was lying with my head hanging backwards - I wasn't. Someone shooed everyone out, turned off the light and tried closing the door - to give me some rest. I had a fit; I wanted the lights on, the doors open and people surrounding me and I most certainly did not want to be alone. It was the worst feeling of claustraphobia I've ever experienced. I think the nurses had a party when I left because I was a handful. Giving birth took a back seat to this completely irrational, but overwhelming fear.

Just to add a little fun, my body decided it didn't like the epidural and my blood pressure kept dropping. Not to be left out, my soon-to-be-born daughter decided she didn't like labor, andher heart rate dropped lower with every contraction. Quite the carnival atmosphere!

Then, swooping in to save the day, came Wonder Woman - I mean my OB GYN. She calmly said that it seemed being born wasn't my daughter 'favorite thing to do' and she recommended a c-section. She didn't add that giving birth was clearly not my strength either, but she could have.

So I was wheeled into surgery, my daughter was quickly yanked out and I got to meet her for a few seconds. Then, at my request, I drifted into sweet oblivion with the help of some wonderful drugs, while my OB GYN finished surgery. I'm probably not the most stoic individual you'll ever meet . . .

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

Snow White & her peeps.

All things baby

One of my favorite bloggy hangouts these days is, there's always something fun going on over there, I can't resist checking in daily (ok, several times a day . . ! ) Actually, there's a contest going on over there right now; they're giving away a bunch of too, too cute stuff for babies, and when I say too cute, I do mean it!

Here's what is up for grabs: Little Ladybug Designs is giving away a Mommy Calling Card design. How wonderfully handy for when you meet a potential new playmate at the park! Go check out her site, I really love the personalized Jungle wall art.

BabyBoudoir is donating a personalized Diaper Wipes Case, talk about adding a bit of style to an otherwise rather mundane task. Also, check out their crib bedding, you'll be reaching for your credit card!

My Embroidered Gifts is giving away a Satineesnugs Duck with embroidery. This site has heaps of darling personalized gifts. I particularly like the ceramic birth plates, I think they're a lovely keepsake.

And to round off this delightful chunk of baby stuff, we have a princess-themed burp cloth set from One Posh Kid; a site that is full of haute must-haves, I'd like to snag a Flower Couture tank for my daughter.

So stop by, check out these sites (they are a treat) - and throw your name in the hat for this cute contest!

Monday, August 25, 2008

90 Years young

Today is my Granny's 90th birthday. I sent her a card, chocolates, photos of her youngest grandchild. My family celebrated her milestone with a little birthday bash yesterday afternoon. I couldn't be there, but apparently it went well.

I called during the festivities yesterday and she was in fine form. She told me she has to use a walker and she is going a little deaf, but otherwise, she assures me she still has all her "faculties".

She called my husband by my brother-in-law's name; she told me my daughter would 'tell me all about the party', when she actually meant my mom - I think; (my daughter is a year-and-half and is here with me). I had to talk very loudly in order for her to hear plus the delay on the transatlantic call was terrible, and we kept talking over each other.

I was begining to despair of having a decent conversation. Then she scolded me for spending my money on the phone call and, just as I was defending myself, she scolded me for not visiting - she said I'd better hurry up because she couldn't promise she'd make it to her next birthday, in fact she went on to say she rather hoped she wouldn't. This made me smile. My gran is still the same: feisty and delighting in it.

A few things about my gran: She was born in 1918. She was married to my grandfather for just over 50 years. Her two kids gave her six grandchildren and she now has ten great grandchildren with one en route. She has yet to meet my daughter, her youngest great grandchild. She used to smoke like a chimney (she finally quit after angina set in); she drinks a whiskey and milk nightcap every evening before bed - and she has done this for as long as I can recall.

She worked most of her life, but she's never been anywhere near a computer, I don't think she's used a cell phone, she certainly doesn't own one. She doesn't drive anymore - to her chagrin. She had a rather unpredictable African Grey parrot for ever, and she is devoted to her Maltese poodles.

She has the smallest feet I've ever seen on an adult. My sister and I used to love to play dress up with her dozens of pairs of teetering high heels, but I wasn't even into my teens before I couldn't squeeze into them anymore.

She once got mightily upset with me because I told her she was heterosexual . . . She once had everyone baffled in a game of charades with her mime of the novel 'Wuthering Heights", she thought the title was 'Withering Heights", so she kept weaving around and'withering' herself away, while her audience looked on mystified. There's more to this story, but some things are best left as family business.

These days, she is physically frail: her knees hurt; her back aches; she's losing her hearing and her world has shrunk to the downstairs level of my aunt's home, but her feisty spirit is still strong, and I am so glad to hear it.

Happy birthday Granny, you are awesome!

Mark your calendars!

Launch Party

September 1st will mark the start of a huge party to celebrate the launch of Bits From A Brit, a new sister site to Parents with Style. They'll be reviewing heaps of products - and giving a bunch away too. So mark your calendars and remember to stop by and check 'em out; this sounds like it's going to be one fun tea party!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Something to soothe a suffering behind

There’s nothing worse than diaper rash and, with my little one, it doesn’t take much to bring it on. We change diapers fastidiously; the amount of money we spend on diapers each week will attest to that. Yet still, my toddler will become afflicted with a nasty rash and, not only will I feel just awful for her, I’ll also feel personally responsible for causing that irritated little behind. I coat her in diaper rash cream and, eventually, the rash subsides, but it usually takes several days of suffering before it’s cleared up.

I have recently learned that severe diaper rash can be the result of yeast coming into contact with irritated skin and bringing on a yeast infection. This is where Vusion ointment comes in. Vusion is a prescription strength medication that helps fight diaper rash that also has a documented yeast infection. Vusion is steroid-free and gentle enough to treat babies as young as four weeks old - and it is the only FDA approved medication to treat this type of diaper rash with yeast infection

Vusion is only available through prescription so, the next time we visit our pediatrician, I will be asking him about this. If your little one suffers the same plight, I recommend you do the same.
Visit learn more about this product and to find out about a $25.00 rebate offer.

This review is courtesy of Mom Central

Where did she learn this?

This afternoon, my daughter made me giggle and I have to tell you why. The story has a sprinkling of potty humor involved, so brace yourself. (I promise it's tame.)

I had a friend over for afternoon tea. We were chit-chatting away, my daughter was amusing herself clambering on to and off of the sofa. In the midst of teatime festivities, I heard her toot - loudly. I looked at her open-mouthed.

"Did you just toot?"

She didn't miss a beat. She gave me a quick look, scurried over to the other side of the room and grabbed her much-loved dolly. Then (and every word of this is true), she sniffed her baby's behind, crinkled up her nose and waved her chubby little hand back and forth in front of her nose in the 'peww!' motion.

She was blaming the toot on her dolly!

I was stunned - and impressed. Such a smooth recovery, she's not even two!

My friend and I were quite overcome by these antics but, while we were having a hearty chuckle, Pudding Pie didn't miss a beat. She resumed her couch gymnastics, apparently with a clear conscience. As far as she was concerned, the case was closed.

I guess it is. We'll have to give that dolly a bit of a lesson in etiquette though.

My first bloggy award


Well, this is a first. I received my first blog award yesterday! Thank you to Leah from Diaries of a Domestic Goddess for nominating me; I do feel special!

According to the rules, I must pass this award on to seven other bloggers and so, without further ado, here are my nominees:

Congrats ladies, and thank you for being among my favorites! Here's what you need to do now:

  • Add the award logo to your blog
  • Link to the person who gave you the award
  • Nominate at least 7 other blogs
  • Link to those blogs on your blog
  • Leave a message for your nominees on their blogs

Monday, August 18, 2008

Simply stunning

Look at this gorgeous custom handbag from Simply Suzann. Sweetly named 'Pink Pony Tales & Bamboo', it is on sale for only $12.50! Or you could pick up a Perfectly Peachy backpack, on sale for only $10.00. There are lots of other gorgeous bags at this boutique, go check them out. And . . . you can win a $30.oo gift certificate to spend on your heart's desire at Simply Suzann! Just head over to and throw your name in the hat before August 22nd.

Thumbs up for eco-friendly Clorox product

Doing the dishes is not my idea of a good time, but I have found a product that makes the task less of a dreaded chore. Allow me to introduce Green Works Natural Dishwashing Liquid from Clorox.

The first time I used this, I thought 'Hmm, that's a nice smell.' I squirted a bit more into the pot I was grumpily scouring and a flicker of a smile actually crossed my face. It's nice to use a dish soap that smells good; it's not bland, nor does it have the overpowering, sickly sweet and quite dreadful scent of some other dish soaps I've used. I am enamored with the smell of the Original, but Clorox also offers four other scents: Water Lily, Tangerine, Free & Clear and Simply Lemon.

Well, now that we've got that out of the way, a delightful smell is lovely, but does the Green Works Natural Dishwashing Liquid do the job? I used it on my pots, both my glass and porcelain dishes, and my daughter's endless supply of sippy cups - and I found it worked very well. The dishes came out clean and I didn't have to rinse and rinse - and rinse some more - to get rid of the sticky residue a dish soap can leave behind.

Another plus: I spend of lot of time each day sudsing up my daughter's high chair feeding tray after messy meals, and I was more than happy to use a product made with natural, plant-based ingredients derived from coconuts, as well as essential oils. Now I can give her a clean feeding tray and my hands don't take such a beating.

The Green Works products use biodegradable ingredients, are packaged in recyclable bottles and are not tested on animals. So, if you'd like to live a greener life but you still want your cleaning products to pack a punch, try Green Works !

Green Works products are available everywhere that Clorox products are sold, and they range in price from $2.99 to $3.59.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Beautiful shoes for little feet

Red Sox Mommy is hosting a rather tasty giveaway - the prize is a pair of See Kai Run shoes - of your choice! I've joined in the fun because I've been wanting a pair in the Emilie style for ages. I just found the Elaine style (pictured below) and now my heart is torn . . .

Click over to Red Sox Mommy and throw your name in the hat before 8/21.

Friday, August 15, 2008

The Sand Sorority

We went to the sand park today. I've mentioned before how much Pudding Pie loves this place. I am not quite as enamored, but that is not the point. Anyway, I slather Pudding Pie up with sunscreen and off we go the park, with sand toys, sippy cups filled with ice water, peanut butter sandwiches and some Animal Crackers for good measure. We drive there - it's really close - I unload our stash in to our rickety little stroller, I plunk Pudding Pie in and we head for the sand.

Did I mention that I'm not looking my best? My teeth are brushed, my hair is brushed (just barely), but that's about it. My clothes are creased, I'm not wearing a stitch of make up and I look as dumpy as I feel. But what is the point of getting all glammed up for the sand park? We go there, we have fun, we get filthy and then we go home and take a good shower.

Anyway, we make our grand entrance at the sand park and find a gaggle of other mothers there and they've set themselves up like it's their own private beach - sans surf. This I do not have a problem with, ‘make yourselves comfy’ I say. But there is something about their attitude that irks me. They have spread themselves out: strollers littered everywhere, towels, sippy cups, lounging chairs -I feel as though I'm crashing their party.

We pick our way through their debris and find ourselves a spot on the fringe. They do not offer to move some of their cr*p out of the way. They feign ignorance, but I know we are being observed from behind dark sunglasses and perfect pedicures. We get to playing and it’s all good.

The Sand Sorority is yakkin’ it up: Oh my gosh/I KNOW/totally!

One of their brood crawls over to us and engages with Pudding Pie. A Sand Sorority mama spies him, scoots over and swiftly yanks him away: ‘Oh my gosh, I’m so sorry!’ (For what?)

We continue our sand adventures, Pudding pie in her element, mommy gently sweating and fantasizing about a/c.

Later an older kid from the brood meanders over to investigate the large hole I have dug for Pudding Pie. Pudding Pie is sitting on the edge, legs dangling in the hole. Older Kid looks into the hole, remarks that it is big and idly kicks sand in. I say in my best diplomatic voice: ‘Oh, honey, don’t do that please – it’s her hole.’ I am ignored and I note that no Sand Sorority mama looks likely to intervene.

‘Stop that please.’

No response, the idle kicking continues.

Protective mommy kicks in: ‘Listen to me: Stop that now or I am going to stop you myself.’

Older kid looks startled, there is a noticeable hush from Sand Sorority. Then Older Kid’s mama calls him over sharply and speaks to him in hushed tones, casting furtive glances our way. Our glances meet, I receive a quick, tight, fake smile and I send back a huge, cheery one.

You may outnumber us Sand Sorority, but don’t mess with this mama.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

Summertime and the livin' is good

The ladies over at 5 Minutes For Mom are holding a Summer Fun photo contest, with a $500 prize for the winning photo! Click over and check out all of the entries, there are some truly adorable photos. This is our hopeful submission! (If you'd like to enter - hurry! The contest ends today at 3pm eastern, we are just skidding in ourselves!)

About the photo: I have heaps of pool photos of Pudding Pie and, as I was sifting through, trying to select my favorites, I realized that for us, Pudding Pie's most favorite place this summer has been the sand park. We have spent hours there, with Pudding Pie digging, rolling, building, doing whatever it takes to get sand in as many places as possible . . . while mom gently sweats beside her. So this it: This picture defines what has been - and continues to be - our idea of summer fun!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Blood, sweat, sand and tears

Last week was Pudding Pie's Week In The Wars.

On Wednesday, she fell during an activity class and gave herself a blood nose. Lots of blood and hugs and tears later and she was fine, but we created quite a stir and mommy's t-shirt looked like something from the Texas Chainsaw Massacre. The worst part was that when she fell, it didn't look like anything. She didn't fall from atop anything high , she just kind of tripped over her feet and then fell face first onto the hard carpet. I thought 'oh-oh, that'll hurt a bit' and started toward her, but I picked up the pace when I heard her 'for real' cries.

Thursday was shot day and that's never pretty, but she was brave and it was over quick.

Friday was uneventful.

Saturday we were at our favorite haunt: The sand park. Lots of glorious fun in the sand, steamy hot sunshine and then on to the water park to cool off and get sand out of the fat rolls. Pudding Pie has always been enthused about the sand park but kind of so-so about the water park. Lately that has started to change and on Saturday she was having a blast, racing through the water sprays, lots of excited squealing, too cute. In the middle of all this running and squealing, she tripped over her own feet - again and sprawled forward on the concrete. I felt ill and snatched her up. She howled in pain and blood poured out of her mouth. Blood, tears, big commotion and another t-shirt from the Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

She's fine now, she bit down hard on her lip and cut it horribly, but it is amazing how quickly these little bodies get to healing up.
Mom is traumatized, I really don't like the down side of increased toddler mobility . . .

At the sand park, just before taking a spill.

Mamanista's Back to School Guide


For the little ones who are all set to head back to the land of learning, whether their classroom is at school or at home, the ladies at Mamanista have assembled some great finds in their Back To School Guide. Stop by, check out their picks, and throw your name in the hat for some of their fab contests!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Seeking large, lifelike pooch (or pooches) ASAP for my dog-deprived daughter. Pooch(es) must be prepared for overwhelming, somewhat obsessive demonstrations of love and devotion from a toddler who has a fascination with all creatures canine. Pooches must have unending patience as will be pets to first-time diminutive dog owner. Also, pooches should be prepared to share living space with fat, grumpy cat who has strong aversion to sharing same space with other four-legged creatures. (Note: Grumpy cat agrees to tolerate pooches so long as they are lifelike, and so long as they agree to bear full brunt of toddler's mad love.) Lifelike pooches must be content to live sedentary lifestyle in one bedroom shoebox apartment with no desire to roam large garden or home. (Cat has adjusted well .) Please help us procure lifelike playmates for our lonely dog-lover.

Note from Mom of canine-obsessed toddler:
This ad is in response to a post from 5 Minutes For Mom, they're looking for a good home for not one, but three lifelike pooches from their store A Rocking Horse To Love. We'd like them to know they've found it . . .

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Back to School with Mommies United

Time for some Back to School celebrations! From August 18th to August 25th, Mommies United is dedicating a whole week to Back to School and there will be an assortment of yummy prizes up for grabs! Be sure you don't miss out on this, it's going to be fun!

5MFM Back to School Giveaway Event


5 Minutes For Mom is holding a Back to School Giveaway Event from August 4 to August 10. They're offering product reviews and giveaways to make back-to-school season easier - and there will also be goodies for the preschoolers! Click over and join in the fun!

Monday, August 4, 2008

This one will help teach your little one to love learning!

Here's another really neat giveaway going on at Click over to Momdot before August 9th, and enter to win a Wiggle Giggle Learn Starter Package with CD and a Back to Basics toy. The starter package CD from Wiggle Giggle Learn will be individualized to the child’s age and includes weekly activity plans for a year, family field trip cards, nursery rhymes, finger plays and more. The value of the starter package is $139.95. The winner also receives a CD of songs and a special learning toy from Back to Basic Toys!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

A table top piano from Tick-A-Too

I've found it. The most beautiful play kitchen ever. Aren't you in love with this Prairie Kitchen from Kidcraft? Don't you adore the heart shaped artwork?! I can just see my daughter spending hour after happy hour in her kitchen . . .
I found it on the Tick-A-Too website and I have a mission now: I have to find a way to persuade my husband to fork out the cash for this thing of beauty.
Anyway, the reason I was trawling through Tick-A-Too was
because I was entering
yet another giveaway from, and this time the prize is an adorable Schoenhut 18 key children’s table top piano. My daughter would love this! Visit and enter for a chance at this beautiful piano, and enjoy yourself as you trawl through the Tick-A-Too site, it's full of I-want-it-right-now stuff! Giveaway ends August 7th.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

I heart her

My Pudding Pie is growing so fast and, while it makes me so proud to watch her clocking up her milestones, it also saddens me that my little girl is hurtling so quickly away from babyhood.

I know this sounds cliched, but it's true: nothing could have prepared me for the overwhelming love I have for this perfect little creature. She truly is the sweetest, smartest, funniest person I've ever met.

For now, we get to spend all day, every day together and there's nothing I'd rather be doing. With Pudding Pie, each day is a new adventure; I'm reminded of how the world appears through the eyes of a child.

Perhaps the best thing about being mom to Pudding Pie is that she thinks I totally rock. She doesn't think I'm fat or frumpy, she doesn't mind when I spend half the day in my pyjamas, she doesn't care when I forget to put on make up, she looks at me and she sees one thing: Mommy.

Awsome stroller giveaway!

Chic Shopper Chick has joined forces with Micralite for a fantastic giveaway! Up for grabs is this awesome Micralite FastFold! This too cool stroller retails for $329. Visit Chic Shopper Chick and throw your name in the hat - several times if you want! Contest closes August 29th.

Friday, August 1, 2008

The Original Country Bob's Cookbook

I received a lovely surprise in the mail this week: The Original Country Bob's Cookbook. This is the first cookbook from Country Bob's, and it is a beautiful hardcover just packed with recipes featuring Country Bob's All Purpose Sauce, and filled with inspiring scriptures. I can't wait to try some of these recipes, there's even one for fudge that uses Country Bob's All Purpose Sauce and I have to tell you, it sounds tasty!

I see pretty, oh so pretty

Feast your eyes on this piece of loveliness, don't you want to get your hands on it? It's a Soho Multi Print Hobo from Coach, and Laurie at La Vie de Laurie is giving it away! And all you have to do to get in on the action is race over to her blog and sign up before August 2nd, that's tomorrow so hurry, hurry!