Saturday, July 31, 2010

Winners, Winners, Everywhere!

Due to my unexpected case of strep throat, I slacked in redrawing the SleepJoy and Coleman Lantern winners. But since today is the first day that I can hold my head up for more than three minutes without my glands feeling as if they were going to explode, I decided to draw all of the winners. So, check the winner's page, or the original post, and congrats to all of our winners.


Tomorrow starts our Back to School Bash! Did you RSVP?

Well, I know Lauren put out the announcement and a few of you grabbed our button and posted it to your blog walls or facebook pages, (HUGE THANKS!!) and are earning extra early bird entries for doing so! I'm so excited for the party to start tomorrow!

We have been working very hard behind the scenes trying to get everything ready to go. We will be working with a very diverse and interesting bunch of companies this month- from Marcal, to Elmer's, to Seventh Generations, to Crayola and so much more. We're even going to have a food week, with special deals, coupons, and giveaways from some of your favorite kid-friendly food products!

We've had a couple of questions emailed or facebooked to us regarding the Back to School Bash, and as always we enjoy hearing from you, our readers on anything and everything- especially when a blog party is involved.

Okie dokie-

If you would like to add our button to your Facebook Page, please copy it from here.. Try not to copy it as a jpg, keep the original file type (png). Then go to your Facebook page, in your status update, tell your friends that you are participating in the Back to School Bash @4BabyAndMom-- As you are typing @4BabyAndMom, there should be a bar that comes up underneath and automatically pulls up our fan page. Click it and it will become a hyperlink sending your friends our way. If you are having a problem getting it to show up as a hyperlink, t-y-p-e-s-l-o-w-e-r. Some times Facebook needs to catch it's breath. ;)

Anyway, then click on attach photo, select our back to school bash button, and post it to your wall. Ideally, we would love for you to put our direct domain- - in your status update too, but we'll leave that up to you!

I think that's about it! Spread the word and grab a button!


Thursday, July 29, 2010

Pop On Pals Builds Pretend Play!

There's this great new product that we were able to review recently called, Pop On Pals. It's brand new to the market, in fact, their website just went live last week!

Pop On Pals are a new collection of toys for tots and preschoolers. The people can "pop-on" different outfits or costumes in just a snap, and the play sets interact with children as soon as the characters "pop" into place. Little hands can play with each individual character, and love hearing the click it makes as the pieces lock into place.

We received the Amusement Park Playset, and Abbigaile LOVED the fact that it had a ferris wheel! (Although Alex is too old for this product, he was excited to unpack this play set because it had a roller coaster!) When we first got it out of the package, Abbie started playing with it instantaneously. Her big brother was a super big helper because, at first we couldn't figure out why the ferris wheel wasn't operating. He figured it out in about three seconds. We didn't realize that there's a yellow knob by the top of the roller coaster that needs to be pushed over for the ferris wheel to work. When it's leaning one way, the ferris wheel goes around and when it's leaning the other way, the swing swings.

Since opening it, Abbie has been playing with it on and off almost constantly. Yesterday, I caught her with her barbie, selling tickets to the Pop On Pal.. I do wish that the actual play set came with more than one person, as children would be encouraged to interact the characters together.

Visit the website to find more information on the available playsets, transportation vehicles and Pop On Pals accessories, to download coloring sheets, or play with their interactive website to see how everything works!

Pop On Pals
offers truly does offer your preschooler a "World of Endless Popabilities!"

Special Thanks to Team Mom for allowing us to review this product.


Monday, July 26, 2010

Under $1 Deals! Back to School Steals

You may have noticed that the Sunday paper's sales fliers are starting to ooze back to school savings. With both of my kids in school full time, I have started stocking up on school supplies already- and with sales like these, why not?!

These are the under a dollar deals that I have found in my area:
Be sure to check your local sales fliers for price accuracy.

Visit your local Kmart to find:

2 pocket, 3-prong portfolio folder: $0.15
RoseArt 24-ct crayons: $0.25
4-oz. Elmer’s school glue: $0.25
Paper Mate pens (Limit 4): $0.50
Pencil boxes: $0.50
RoseArt colored pencils (12pk): $0.50
Filler paper 150-ct wide or college ruled (Limit 4): $0.50
Select Fashion PR Licensed folders: $0.50

Walgreens is offering these great deals:

2 Pocket Folder with Prongs: $.09 (Limit 5)
Penway Memo book 50 sheet: $.19 with in-ad coupon (Limit 3)
Mini Composition Book 80 Sheets: $.19 with in-ad coupon (Limit 3)
Penway Flexible Ruler: $.39
Penway Protractor: $.39
Penway Poly Pencil Case: $.39
Penway Index Card Case: $.39
Penway 2 Pocket Poly Portfolio: $.39
Penway Crayons 24pk: $.39 with in-ad coupon
Crayola Posterboard: $.39 with in-ad coupon (Limit 6)
Scotch Mailer: $.39 with in-ad coupon (Limit 3)
Penway Filler paper Wide or College Rule, 130 sheets: $.59 with in-ad coupon (Limit 3)
Elmer’s Glue: $.59 with in-ad coupon (Limit 3)
Elmer’s Glue Sticks 2pk: $.59 with in-ad coupon (Limit 3)
Penway Carry-All Pouch: $.59 with in-ad coupon (Limit 3)
Penway Composition book, 80 sheets: $.69 with in-ad coupon
Paper Mate Profile Pens, 2pk: $.69 with in-ad coupon (Limit 3)
Sharpie Markers, 2pk: $.69 with in-ad coupon (Limit 3)
Penway 3 Subject Notebooks, College and Wide Rule, 120 sheets: $.99
Paper Mate Mechanical Pencils 30pk: $.99
Pilot Easytouch Retractable Fine Point pen, 2pk: $.99
Pilot Easytouch Pens Medium Point 3pk: $.99
One size fit all book cover: $.99
Liquid Highlighters 5pk: $.99
Penway #2 Pencils 24pk: $.99
Kids' Scissors: $.99
Construction paper: $.99
Crayola Colored Pencils, 12pk: $.99 with in-ad coupon (Limit 3)

Stock up on pens and these great items at Staples:

Staples Bic Round Stic Ballpoint Pens, black (8-pk): $0.01
Staples Multi-Purpose Paper, 96 bright (500-sheet ream): $0.04 after Easy Rebate
(Both of the above deals are available Sunday through Wednesday with a $5 purchase.)
Buy any backpack, get the full amount back on a Staples gift card (Limit 1): FREE
Zebra Sarasa Retractable Gel Pens (5-pk): $0.26 after Easy Rebate (Limit 1)
Staples Hype Highlighters (6-pk): $0.25 (Limit 2)
Really Useful Box: $0.25 (Limit 2)

Office Depot is offering:

Office Depot Acrylic Rulers: $.05
Office Depot Eraser Caps: $.10
HP Office Paper: $0.95

If you bought everything I've just listed, it would cost you $22.98 for 46 items.. (including your free backpack!) So what are you waiting for? Happy Shopping!!


Save the Date! Back to School Bash ~ August, 2010

Back To School Bash_4BabyAndMom

Back to School means much more than shopping for new clothes and colored pencils, and leave it to 4BabyAndMom to bring you some of the hottest reviews and giveaways during the Back to School Bash, during the ENTIRE month of August!!

Last year we had an amazing turn-out, and this year we are anticipating even more surprises in store for our readers! We still have a few openings in our line-up, so if you are interested in seeing your product featured, please contact 4BabyAndMom at gmail dot com. But hurry, spaces are limited!!

Who's coming to the Back to School Bash?
So far Kids Foot Locker, Kmart, Sears, Crayola, Lafayette Puzzle Company, and Tie Buddies are among the amazing, fun, and fabulous companies that have RSVP'd YES!!

We are still waiting for some RSVP's to come in, and don't want to give ALL of our sponsors away yet, but we do want to give you a greater chance to WIN!!!!

Grab our Back to School Bash button EARLY and add it to the side bar of your blog or website.  You may also post this button to your facebook page if you do not have a blog or website. Just right click on it, save it, add it to your wall pictures and like our page. Please TAG 4BabyAndMom in the picture, and add to your caption- so your friends can find us and we can verify its placement.

If you grab our button before August 1st, you'll receive an extra 3 ENTRIES on every giveaway you enter from NOW through August 31st!!! **(You must post here to tell me you've grabbed the button EARLY, and comment that you have extra entries on all of the giveaways you enter.)**

What are you waiting for? Grab our button, share it with your readers and your friends, leave a comment below so you earn some extra entries!


Sunday, July 25, 2010

Walk Like You Have Somewhere to Go, by Lucille O'Neal *Review*

I don't want you to judge this book by its cover.. or by its author's name.

I will be honest, I was totally expecting this book to be a doozy, and not in a good way. I thought that this book would be about life as a parent of a professional athlete, instead of a story of an incredible woman, her struggles, her victories, her strengths and weaknesses.. and everything in between.

I don't even know where to begin reviewing this book because of how deeply it touched me and because of how many of the moments she described, I walked through myself. From deep longing to be loved, to love someone with their whole heart, to having a baby out of wedlock in a family that was devoted to their faith, to losing herself while taking care of everyone else- the story of Ms. O'Neal's life is an incredible read.

I didn't want to put it down, which for an autobiography, is an incredible feat. Ms. O'Neal's memories on paper came to life and flowed effortlessly from beginning to end. The details in this book are great, and really make it feel as if you are standing in the living room with her at 17, staring at the wallpaper and disapproving face of her grandmother when her pregnancy was discovered.

I found myself becoming hopeful and excited as new friendships and relations begin and  truly relate & empathize with the author at many moments throughout this book. It made me take a step back, and look into my relationship, into my job as a mother, and into my future. It was inspiring and motivating, and showed me that no matter what your age, you could do anything if you put your mind and your heart into it.

Walk Like You Have Somewhere To Go is an incredible journey into woman-hood, into finding yourself-no matter what your age, and into loving yourself completely. As the author describes, it's her journey from "Mental Welfare to Mental Weath", and it truly is.Watching the story come full circle gave the book a well rounded story line and sense of completion. I enjoyed this book very much, and would recommend it to others.

Simply put- If you are looking for a great motivational story to read this summer, head to your local bookstore or to Amazon and pick up WALK LIKE YOU HAVE SOMEWHERE TO GO, by Lucille O'Neal.

I received this book from and was asked to provide my opinon on the selection. As always, this review is 100% that of 4BabyAndMom, and your experience or opinion my differ.


Friday, July 23, 2010

Hampton Chain of Friends Sweepstakes: You + 100 Friends + Hampton= A Weekend to Remember!

This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Hampton Hotels. All opinions are 100% mine.

Click Here
It's hard to believe that it has been 10 years since I graduated from high school. My family moved just days before school started in 9th grade, and although I went to only one high school, I have extremely close ties to the high school I felt I should have graduated from. This year, I was invited to two high school reunions, but unfortunately I will not be able to attend either of them. I have two weddings I'm going to be in within two and a half months, and it's just not in my budget.

Thanks to Facebook, recently I have been able to reconnect with a whole nine years worth of old friends, and rekindled many friendships.. but it's not the same as being able to see them all.

I just learned about the Hampton Chain of Friends Sweepstakes and I can't even tell you how quickly I would take advantage of the grand prize-a free stay for me and 100 of my friends at a Hampton for one weekend. The lucky winner will also receive $5000 to help pay the tax for the weekend! Talk about a great way to catch up with old friends!

Entering only takes a few moments, but think of the possibilities. Friends and family that you haven't seen in forever-and-a-day, all at one location for two days. How fun! What I love about this contest, is it's not like other contests I've seen; anyone can enter, (not just Hilton Honors members), and it doesn't matter if you've never stayed at a Hampton. 

So, what are you waiting for? Enter the sweepstakes now, and share with me what YOU would do if you won!

Visit my sponsor: Chain-of-Friends Grand Prize


Grilled Sausage (or Brats) with Onion Relish

There are some summer nights that you might be looking for something quick, yet refreshing and filling all at the same time. Our family loves to grill a sausage or bratwurst and throw it on a bun in a pinch, so when I saw this recipe, I knew we'd probably like it. I took the recipe card for this from my local Publix Apron's booth; I usually try to put a spin on recipe's I take to make it my own, but I honestly wouldn't change a thing. It was delicious, and I knew that it would only be fair if I shared it with you! Keep on the lookout for the recipe to the super quick (and yummy!) dessert pictured here as well!

If  you make this meal, I would love to hear what you think. Enjoy!

  • 8 oz fresh pre-diced onions (1 1/2 cups)
  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinaigrette
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon rubbed sage
  • 1 lb bratwurst or sausage
  • 1 tablespoon sour cream
  • 4 Hoagie Rolls

Preheat grill (or grill pan). Combine onions, vinegar, water, brown sugar, and sage; bring to boil on medium-high. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook and stir 15–20 minutes or until most of liquid evaporates.

Place sausage on grill and cover; grill 15–20 minutes, turning occasionally, or until browned and 160°F.

Stir sour cream into onion mixture. Place sausage in rolls topped with onion relish; serve.


Thursday, July 22, 2010

Catch a Great Book with Romance Novels from Hatchette Book Group

I love to curl up with a great book, but with the kids at home this summer, finding that quiet time is quite rare. I have found that while the kids are playing outside, that I can take advantage of the shade and my lounge chair and read a great novel in just a day or two. Thanks to the Hatchette Book Group, I was able to review three very different, very alluring romance novels.

Ravished by a Highlander by Paula Quinn is the first in the Children of the Mist series, and is a fast paced romance novel loaded with a rich story line and enjoyable characters. The plot is thick with anticipation as the two main characters relationship develops, and the risk for Davina's safety increases. The story flows smoothly and keeps you flipping pages, eager to see what happens next. The details in the historic time period are spot-on, and the romance and passion that develops along the way is enticing and engaging. I loved the accents, and the story; I cannot wait to see what the future installments have in store for its fans. I would recommend this novel to readers that enjoy a brogue and a "knight in shining armor"-er, kilt- to come rescue a damsel in distress & win her heart.

Montana Destiny by R.C. Ryan is the second in the Montana series. Although I did not read the first book, I did not feel lost reading this novel. The characters were well developed and I thoroughly enjoyed the writing style of Ms. Ryan. I enjoyed reading how the relationship between Wyatt, (a wild cowboy who drives a Harley), and Marilee, (an independent, strong-willed EMT), developed and why a lunatic that has it out for them. Is it the gold? Is it the family curse? Fun and exciting, this novel is a quick and easy read. I am excited to read the first in the series, and the future Montana Glory. I would recommend this novel to anyone who enjoys a little mystery and excitement to their romance novel.

Still the One by Robin Wells is by-far my favorite of these new releases. Although I loved all three of these books, I truly fell for the characters in this novel. Love- in its purest form, in its truest form, and in its eternal form is the basis of this novel. After Katie's husband died in Iraq, she functioned, but barely. After she was reconnected with her childhood sweetheart, and something very special that they shared together, her life changed in a most drastic way. As the story progressed, the love, the pain, and the loss that Katie goes through truly pulls at your heart, and you feel her emotions as the chapters fly by. You hope and wish that Zack and Katie can make it- that he can get over his fear of commitment and that she can let go of her past and move to the future. This southern romance novel brings 'summer love' to a whole new level. A must read!

I cannot stress how much I enjoyed all of these books.. so different, yet all so appealing. Our friends at Hatchette Book Group have offered a chance for 4 of our readers to win this summer romance collection for their own library.

The first four numbers in our sequence are 18, 47, 31 and 10 and correspond to comments made by: GALENA, catss99, Louis, and malinda. Please refer to our WINNERS PAGE for more information on how to claim your prize! If the winners do not claim their prizes within a reasonable time period, we will proceed down the list. Thank you for participating, and CONGRATS to our winners!!

Edited on 7/25:
This Giveaway has been featured as a Prizey Editor's Pick! Be sure to visit 4BabyAndMom on Prizey to keep track  of all of our giveaways, and find other exciting offers! 


Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Charter On Demand Goes Beyond Movies

This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Charter.
All opinions are 100% mine.

Date nights are far and few in between at my house, with kids at home who need constant attention. There's nothing like cuddling up on the couch with my husband and catching a movie like Couple's Retreat or Love Happens On Demand, after the little ones are in bed.


Charter On Demand offers so much more than just movies on demand, they offer thousands of television programs and shows for free, for everyone in your house. The sports enthusiast of the house can take advantage of programs from ESPN on demand, as well, so they never miss a beat. Kids can enjoy their favorite shows from Disney Channel or Nickelodeon. Catch a work-out on demand when getting to the gym just "isn't going to happen".

Whether you're looking for something to keep the kids occupied while you cook dinner, or you happened to miss the latest episode of ABC's Castle, you can press play anytime of the day or night. The great thing about the television shows on demand is that they are usually available the next day after the show airs, which makes it convenient and accessible, no matter how hectic your schedule is.

For me, watching my favorite programs On Demand means that I can usually make it through an entire episode without interruptions, and if I have to- I can pause it. (The biggest plus, for me!)

Be sure to check out the Charter On Demand home page for lists of their programs and movies available. If you like the idea of being able to catch your favorite movies and programs On Demand, then You will ‘Like’ their Facebook page as well.

Visit my sponsor: Charter On Demand goes WAY beyond movies


Wordless Wednesday- Wish I was Here..


Saturday, July 17, 2010

8 Year Hiatus- Thinking of Returning to College.

It's hard to believe it's been 8 years. I just emailed one of the local colleges to ask what I need to do to get the ball rolling to enroll again. I'm in a different state now, so I now need to contact my old college to get my transcripts.. but I am officially a nervous wreck.

Just wanted to share with you all.. I would love any comments from adults who returned to college after "life" happened to them. Is it normal for me to feel so nervous? My stomach is totally flip-flopping.


JumpStart: Get Moving Family Fitness Wii Game Review

Both of my kids are huge fans of the JumpStart brand. They have been for over 4 years now.

When Alex was little, we played computer software games. As he grew, he loved his JumpStart program so much we wore out the disk! Now that Abbie is at about that same age, she's also learning to love JumpStart. We've reviewed the online JumpStart program last year, and since then, they've been even more hooked. I love that they play it, and (most of the time) have no idea that it's educational!

Needless to say, when I was given the opportunity to review the brand new JumpStart: Get Moving Family Fitness for the Wii, I jumped at the chance.

Hosted by fitness expert Brooke Burke, JumpStart Get Moving Family Fitness is a great way to have fun and get your blood pumping! Kids can set up their own Jumpees, just like in the online version, and they play their way through sports and obstacles. Alex's favorite is none other than baseball, but Abbie loves the foot races!!

It's so fun to watch them work together, and independantly on the tasks, and I love participating with them. If you're kids are familiar with, then they should love this game. If you've never been to, run, don't walk over there and let your child try out their online world, absolutely free. If they love what they see, then definitely check out this game!

Now, from a reviewers standpoint, there were a few things that I wish they would have done a little bit better. The graphics online are so fun, and although the background picture changed during the Wii game, it wasn't overly exciting. The kids had fun, but they are 4 and 7.. My son who gets easily bored enjoyed playing it, but mentioned that baseball is also on the Wii Sports. I think what he liked most was that his Jumpee looked like the same Jumpee he plays with online. It is not a die-hard exercise game, but it does make you move (like many Wii games on the market). You also have to make sure your calibration is dead-on with this game, as the first time we tried to play, the placement of our sensor was not working with the game. I have no idea if this was just us and our Wii, or if this might be something they need to fix. The kids do prefer the online JumpStart game versus this one, but I think it may be because there have been recent changes to the program. As a mom, I wish they incorporated more educational material into this game. After all, that is one of the things I love the most about the online game.

In my honest opinion, I do believe that this game is a fun game if your kids like the online JumpStart program. So check it out: and let the learning begin.

Special thanks to our friends at JumpStart for allowing us to review this game in exchange for our honest opinions on this game.


Thursday, July 15, 2010

Win Tickets to the Chicago Baby & Toddler Expo (July 31 & August 1)

From the Press Release: 

Saturday, July 31 and Sunday, August 1, 2010, the Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center in Chicago will be the home to the Chicago Baby & Toddler Expo. More than 125 exhibitors will showcase the hottest new products and services for new and expectant parents, grandparents, and tots. Families will romp, race, and rock out with a weekend full of fun contests and prizes, live performances by rocker moms, live blogging in the Moms Connect area, and themed parties for the pampered potty-training tyke.

The Chicago Baby & Toddler Expo is produced by Bebe Paluzza, the nation’s largest producer of baby fairs and events.

The Right Gear
Visitors will find hundreds of exhibitors ranging from trusted national companies to Chicagoland’s best boutiques, offering furniture and bedding, toys, clothing, handmade baby carriers, diaper and daycare services, and nursing supplies. To capture the memorable first years of a child’s life, exhibitors will feature customized journals, photo albums, birth announcements and invitations. Parents looking to “go green” will find organic foods and eco-friendly baby products, including natural bedding, cloth diaper providers, and gently used clothing. Nutritionists will offer informal advice and answer visitor questions, and will share products for keeping baby healthy.

Moms won’t be left out either. Makeup consultants will offer style tips, while pregnancy planners answer questions about prenatal care, and health experts provide practical advice for taking care during and after pregnancy. Susan the Shower Diva will share her best ideas and trends for fun games, themes, etiquette and gifts to throw the best baby shower for a mom-to-be.

Family-Friendly Fun and Games
Moms will wave the checkered flag during family-friendly competitions for the chance to win big prizes. The first 50 moms to arrive at the show on Saturday and Sunday will receive the coveted Bebe Swag Bag overflowing with more than $500 in products and goodies. Infants will crawl, scoot, and wobble their way to victory in the Diaper Derby, and Chicago will crown its next pint-sized pop sensation in the Juno Rising Stars Search, a nationwide hunt for a talented youngster to appear in Juno’s line of Emmy Award winning music videos. For rules and to apply, visit

At the Chicago Baby & Toddler Expo, the Daddyathon obstacle course will put dads’ diapering skills to the test as they race the clock to push strollers through a circuit of baby-related games and challenges. First one across the finish wins a Britax stroller and “man bag” from O Yikes! active gear.

After the races, parents will find reprieve in the Mommy Pampering Lounge and Daddy Tailgate Lounge. While licensed sitters watch the kids, moms will relax with luxurious manicures and spa treatments, while dads chill in the ultimate “man cave” outfitted with big screen TVs, cushy recliners, and videogames.

Activities Just for Kids
Little princesses can escape to a magical castle for treats, games, and crafts at the Princess Tea Party, while boys dress up as pirates to ward off evil villains and play swashbuckling games at the Boys Pirate Party. Rambunctious revelers are encouraged to dress in costume. The Princess Tea Party and Boys Pirate Party will be held Saturday, July 31 at 1:00 p.m. and 2:30 p.m, respectively. Reservations are required by e-mailing Space is limited.

Energetic tots will run, jump, and romp in the special Coach Pickel’s and Jelly Bean Sports and the Oaklee’s Guide activity areas. Special guest Boca Beth will engage kids in fun games that teach Spanish basics, and share how parents can help to raise bilingual children. Kids can also put on their “listening ears” to bop around to the high-energy, positive tunes of Mr. Singer & The Sharp Cookies and the kid-friendly acoustic rock of Laura Doherty.

Live Music from Rocker Moms
On the Chicago Baby & Toddler Expo’s main stage, three mom musicians will show how hard they rock during head-bobbing, hip-swaying performances. With AC/DC, Iron Maiden, and Metallica in her repertoire, guitarist Linda Robertson will rock out to the classics, while roots rocker Anna Fermin will sing selections she has performed alongside such famed musicians as Johnny Cash and Paula Cole. Alt-country performer Cari Ray will rounds out the roster with original performances on her six string.

Web Savvy Moms Get Wired, Stay Connected
Moms can get wired and post live updates from the Chicago Baby & Toddler Expo in the Moms Connect area. Free wireless access for bloggers and Twitter users will let social media-savvy moms share their favorite exhibitors, upload images, provide tips from the show, and chat live with other Chicago area parents (and the world!) from their smart phones or laptops.
The Chicago Baby & Toddler Expo will be open on Saturday, July 31, from 10am-5pm and Sunday, August 1, from 11am-4pm at the Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center. General admission to the Expo is $7 online and $10 at the door, $5 for grandparents and free for children under 5.

This year's Chicago Baby & Toddler Expo is made possible in part by national sponsors Boogie Wipes, Britax, Buy Buy Baby, Joovy, Juno Baby, Mamapalooza, Miracle Cord, and Sounds of Pertussis, and local sponsor, Chicago-area

For more information about the Chicago Baby & Toddler Expo or to purchase discount admission tickets online visit or call (317) 517-9920.

Doesn't that sound like such a blast? I wish we lived closer, so we could participate in this event! Don't forget that the first 50 moms that show up on both Saturday and Sunday will receive a swag bag jam-packed with over $500 worth of goodies and products!

I know my daughter would just LOVE to show up dressed as a princess and take advantage of the Princess Tea Party- and my son, if he was younger, would have enjoyed the Pirate Party, as well. How cute is that?! What a great way to allow the kids to have fun too! (Don't forget that in order to participate in either of those, you need to RSVP to

With so many great sponsors and demonstrators, this year's Chicago Baby & Toddler Expo is sure to have something for everyone.

Our new friends at Bebe Paluzza have offered 3 of our Chicago Area readers a pair of tickets to attend the Baby & Toddler Expo!

Here's How to WIN!
This one is fun! Leave a comment telling me one thing you love about being a mom. If you're pregnant with your first, tell me one thing you're looking forward to, as a mom.

Extra Entry Opportunity:
You may tweet up to 2x's Daily:
I want to go to the Chicago Baby+Toddler Expo 7/31 & 8/1! Enter to win tickets @4BabyAndMom Contest ends 7/23

One entry per email address, please. We will pick the winners at random, and announce them on our WINNERS PAGE. Anyone can enter, but your own transportation must be provided. The giveaway is strictly for two general admission tickets, and valued at about $20. The information above was provided by the PR firm which represents Bebe Paluzza. I received no monetary compensation for sharing this information with you, my readers.


Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Kmart Camping Guide Gets you ready for a Summer Staycation! + Giveaway

Back in June, I mentioned how my kids and I are trying to find things to do to keep busy this summer in our yard. A couple of years ago, we (and by we I mean my husband) tried taking my son camping in our backyard. It was before we had a fence, and I was paranoid that he would wake up, or go sleepwalking and my husband would sleep right through it. Alex fell asleep back there, but then we brought him in, and he woke up inside. This past April, we (and by we I mean *I*) actually took the kids camping for a whole weekend at a campground at one of our local parks.  They had a blast, and I actually enjoyed myself as well.

As much as I thought I was prepared for our two night outing, I realized just how much stuff we were missing after just a couple of hours. We rented a cabin, so I wasn't entirely roughing it with the kids, but one of the major things that I totally forgot to pack was a lantern of some sort. Not only did I forget a lantern, but I forgot extra batteries for the wimpy flashlight that I had. Thankfully the bathroom building had lights on it, and we were fairly close, but still- it is something that I made sure I would not forget for the next time.

This summer, Kmart has put together and online camping guide to ensure that on your camping trip you have everything you need. Run down the stuff you've packed with their essentials checklist, read tips on camping do's and don'ts, and get ideas for games and entertainment while you are roughing it.

Not only that, but through out the rest of July, some of Kmart's best selling camping gear and accessories are on sale. Right now you can take advantage of the Coleman Canyon Ranch Tent  on sale for just $239! This tent has a 7.5' center height, can be sectioned off into three separate sleeping quarters (which fit up to three queen sized air beds), is guaranteed to keep you dry, and has a built in LED lighting system.

You can also find this great Stars and Stripes Chair (orig. $13.99) on sale for $11.99. I love these chairs for more than camping. We take them along with us to the beach, fishing, to the parades, and best of all to the kids soccer and baseball games.

We usually have two in the minivan, and if it's not, it's always easily accessible. They take only seconds to set up and take down, which makes it a perfect product for families on the go. 

Another great item that you'll see on sale is the E-Z Up Jamboree 10ft x 10ft Canopy. Great for camping, for parties and more, this canopy offers a polyester top has a silver coating that blocks 99% of harmful UV rays, easy to use pull pin sliders, 100sq. ft. of shade, and adjustable legs that go to three different heights.

Visit Kmart’s helpful camping resources at As an added treat, Kmart is offering an additional 15% off all adult and kids Coleman sleeping bags for online purchases only at from now until 7/24! Just use the promo code is FITFACEBK610.

Our new friends at Kmart have offered one lucky reader their chance to win a Coleman 2-Mantle QuickPack™ Lantern, so they are never in the situation I was the last time I went camping! This propane lantern comes ready to use, just add propane and light. The unique protective cover (included) doubles as the lanterns packaging to reduce environmental impact. The collar of lantern nests into base of lantern for stability. It provides 7 hours of light on high, and about 13.8 hours on low.


Please refer to our WINNERS PAGE for more information on how to claim your prize!

This giveaway is open to residents of the US. This giveaway will end on July 24, 2010 at 11:59pm EST. The winner will be chosen using, and all winner information will be posted on our WINNERS PAGE and on this post. Any unclaimed prizes will be redrawn accordingly and at the discretion of 4BabyAndMom. Disclosure: I did not receive monetary compensation for this post. As always this does not affect my opinions on this product or the company. Any opinions expressed are 100% that of 4BabyAndMom. Your experience with these products, website and companies may differ.

Edited on 7/20:
This Giveaway has been featured as a Prizey Editor's Pick! Be sure to visit 4BabyAndMom on Prizey to keep track  of all of our giveaways, and find other exciting offers!


K-Y YOURS+MINE Kissable Sensations Brings Exploration Back to the Bedroom

I don't know how long you've been with your significant other, but my husband and I are celebrating our 10th year together. I met Brian when I was 17 years old, just a few weeks before I turned 18. We dated for about three years when we had our first child and got married. Since then, our world has been full of all of the ups and downs a committed relationship with two kids, a dog, and a mortgage holds. Needless to say, somewhere in the process we've become exhausted, and often forget to explore each other the way we did when our relationship was new, and exciting.

Recently, we had the opportunity to try some of the other products in the  K-Y YOURS+MINE line, and without a doubt- I am definitely impressed, yet again.

The blurb on the K-Y YOURS+MINE Kissable Sensations says:
For more play during foreplay. Take time to explore and stimulate each other's body. Enjoy the sensual, arousing pleasure of foreplay with decadent chocolate and refreshing strawberry sensations for the body. Together, share a fun, delicious, multi-sensory head to toe experience – Enjoy foreplay like never before. Shown in a clinical study to increase anticipation and desire for intimacy.
I'll admit that I have tried other flavored products before, but I can genuinely say that I prefer the taste and feel of this product to others. When I told my husband that we were going to be trying out this product, he wasn't that excited, because of past experiences with other flavored products.

Marissa also got to review this product. Here is what she had to say about it:

Like Lauren, I too was impressed with this product. The quality is much higher than other similar products in the market. The great thing about this product is that it is available at your local drug store. You don't have to go to a seedy adult store or order online. K-Y brand is well established and the name always implies a great product with 100% satisfaction (no pun intended). I really like that K-Y has made these products accessible to customers at popular retail stores, where we don't need to wear scarves, and sunglasses, and avert our eyes.

The only con, and it is a small one, that I can find with this product is a slight gender/product confusion. As with other his/her products, both flavors are clearly labeled as "For Him" and "For Her". So obviously, I knew the the "For Her" bottle was mine. Here is where the confusion sets in, do I use this on him or does he use this on me? The instructions spell this out clearly--but stopping to put on your reading glasses to read instructions on your K-Y product may kill the mood. So, just in case and to put all questions to rest--he uses strawberry on you and you use chocolate on him. That said--this is a minor issue and can be easily mended by either just using both *wink-wink* or simply reading the directions first, (but where is the fun in that?).

Our conclusion:
The K-Y Brand has done a great job putting together a product that is sweetly sensual, and helps couples to reconnect and explore each other to revitalize their intimate connection. This, in-turn helps to better intimate health, which itself can lead to better relationships and overall well-being. Both of us would recommend this product to others who are looking for a fun way to reconnect with their spouse or significant other, in a fun and sensual way.

You can find K-Y YOURS+MINE Kissable Sensations at many large name retail locations such as Walgreens, Target, and


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

SleepJoy makes Sleeping a Joy! Review + Giveaway

I have a horrible back. Since having children, I thought that a "sound" sleep was a thing of my past. We purchased a top of the line pillow top mattress about two years ago when we got our taxes back, with the hopes of improving my quality of sleep and easing some of my aches and pains. I never thought that I would be so uncomfortable before I hit my middle age, never mind before I hit 30.

I received an opportunity to review a SleepJoy Foam mattress topper and jumped at the proposition. I figured if anyone could give a true review of their experience, it would be me. I received our mattress topper and had a rough beginning. Thanks to my network on Facebook and Twitter, I was told that most people took about 2 weeks adjust to their new mattress or mattress topper.

When I was younger I had one of those egg-crate style toppers, and it was atrocious. The SleepJoy mattress toppers are top of the line memory foam mattress toppers made with hybrid foam ViscoFresh Latex, which provides the pressure relief of memory foam, along with added support of latex because of its the resilient, firmer texture. When you think of memory foam you think of a squishy foam that reacts to your weight and heat. This memory foam is thick, yet breathable, and more bouncy and firm, yet super soft and inviting. It still relieves tension but doesn't leave a weird imprint when you touch it, sit on it, or lay on it.

The green tea scent that the foam has is light and minty, and fades in about 10-12 days. The topper itself has holes to help it be more breathable than traditional memory foam. The luxurious cotton cover is filled with down like gel fiber and wraps around your mattress like a fitted sheet. The cover alone is so inviting.. it's the perfect compliment to the topper.

  • No hash foam smell, nice minty green tea scent that fades
  • Once our bodies adjusted, we have been waking up more refreshed than without it
  • Super comfy!
  • Made in the USA
  • Eco-friendly
  • Breathable
  • Plush cover provides protection and additional comfort
  • Shipped quickly
  • Moderately priced
  • Can only spot clean, with kids that could be a potential problem
  • Took about 10-12 days to really adjust to the new topper
  • My husband didn't like the scent until it started to fade
  • The kids like my bed because it's more comfortable than theirs
  • "Special time" with my husband was a little difficult at first, but it was fun to experiment and learn our new bed.
I have got to say that I am much more impressed with this topper than I thought I would be. I was not expecting to be sleeping as sound as I have been. Anyone that knows me in real life knows that I used to be awake until 2am almost every night, and was lucky if I had 5 hours of sleep a night. Now, I am eager to get to bed every night, and know if I don't get my 8 hours a night lately. My sleep habits have taken a total 180 turn for the better, and I owe it to my new memory foam mattress topper from Sleep Joy.

Instead of upgrading your bed, think about purchasing a new SleepJoy Memory Foam Mattress Topper to change your sleeping habits and make sleeping a joy again in your home, so you can wake up happy!

Visit to select the mattress or mattress topper that's best for you. Prices start at $199, and are available in Twin, Full, Queen, and King sizes.

Our new friends at Sleep Joy have offered a lucky reader their chance to win a 2" VitaTop ViscoFresh enhanced Memory Foam Mattress Topper to make Sleeping a Joy, so you can wake up happy!


Please refer to the WINNERS PAGE for more information on how to claim your prize! This is the second draw for this giveaway, if this prize is not claimed in a timely manner,a new winner will be chosen.

This giveaway is open to residents of the US. This giveaway will end on July 20, 2010 at 11:59pm EST. The winner will be chosen using, and all winner information will be posted on our WINNERS PAGE and on this post. Any unclaimed prizes will be redrawn accordingly and at the discretion of 4BabyAndMom. Disclosure: I received this mattress topper at no cost from Sleep Joy. I did not receive monetary compensation for this post. As always this does not affect my opinions on this product or the company. Any opinions expressed are 100% that of 4BabyAndMom. Your experience with these products, website and companies may differ.

Edited on 7/15:
This Giveaway has been featured as a Prizey Editor's Pick! Be sure to visit 4BabyAndMom on Prizey to keep track  of all of our giveaways, and find other exciting offers!


Saturday, July 3, 2010

Sam's Club Pillsbury Chocolate Chunk Brownies Make Picnics Perfect!

Originally this brand new product from Pillsbury was pitched to us as a great bake sale item for those last minute bombs that children tend to drop on us, but honestly this product is so much more than that.

Most schools don't allow you to sell anything that you make at home, but the great part about these brownies, is that they come ready to cut and serve. Available exclusively at Sam's Club, the Pillsbury Chocolate Chunk Brownies are simply delish. They are coming with us to a picnic and bar-b-que tomorrow afternoon, frosted like an American Flag to celebrate the 4th of July. The brownie package also hosts six bonus Box Tops For Education, which is always a plus for moms of school aged children. (I'm already saving my stash for next year!)

Most people that know me in real life, know that I love to cook and more specifically, love to bake. I usually don't mind having to whip something up, and generally have the ingredients to pull some sort of cookie together for a ladies night, meeting, or special event. The truth of the matter is that there are just times that I don't want to make the mess, and feel that I have to sacrifice the taste and quality of home made baked goods when I buy store-bought items. It wasn't the case when I found these new Pillsbury Chocolate Chunk Brownies.

At first, we had a little bit of a problem finding them at our local Sam's. Nobody seemed to know what they were, or where they were located. The bakery area brought me to the fridge section, who then brought me to the mix aisle, who then brought me to the freezer section insisting that "it wasn't ready to serve, but it would be cool if it was", until I left exhausted- twice. The third time I returned, I returned wiser. I contacted the sponsor, and asked if we could physically check if my Sam's carried it, and sure enough they did. They gave me an item number so I could actually check myself, and then if I couldn't find it, I could give it to an associate and they could tell me where they have it.

The most important piece of info to take with you, is that these are found on the pastry tables at Sam's Club. The same place that they have the pies, near the bread.

Anyway, back to the review. The brownies themselves are scrumptious. Not super sweet, chewy and chocolate-y with chunks of chocolate throughout. Serve it plain or frosted to honor any holiday or event. This is truly perfect for the Cheerleading meeting, volunteer luncheons, birthday parties and even bar-b-ques. They are available for about $7 and change in my area, but are totally worth not having to prepare and make (and dirty oodles of pans) your own brownies, or when you're really in a jam.

Our friends at MyBlogSpark sent me a Pillsbury Chocolate Chunk Fudge Brownies gift pack that included a $25 Sam's Club gift card to use to purchase the brownies, Betty Crocker frosting, a decorating kit, and a large container for transporting the brownies.

The best part is that they have offered one lucky reader their chance to win a gift pack of their own!

Here's How:
In celebration of the holiday weekend, leave a comment about a situation where the new Pillsbury Chocolate Chunk Fudge Brownies would be the perfect treat to have!

After that you may take advantage of our extra entry opportunities.


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    Win a Sam's Club & Pillsbury Chocolate Chunk Fudge Brownies gift pack ~Ends 7/6~ @4BabyAndMom
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This giveaway is open to residents of the US. This giveaway will end on July 6, 2010 at 11:59pm EST. The winner will be chosen using, and all winner information will be posted on our WINNERS PAGE and on this post. Any unclaimed prizes will be redrawn accordingly and at the discretion of 4BabyAndMom. Disclosure: I received this gift pack from Pillsbury and MyBlogSpark. Any opinions expressed are 100% that of 4BabyAndMom. Your experience with these products, website and companies may differ.

Please refer to our WINNERS PAGE for more information on how to claim your prize! Congrats!


ProFlowers Birthday Gift Baskets for Every Budget

Most of our family still lives over 1500 miles away. When we lived back home, we would get together for a huge bar-b-que at my aunts house to celebrate the 8 people who's birthdays are in the month of July. We would all bring a dish and celebrate, and even as the family dwindled, the memories of this get together is still a fond one.

When ProFlowers asked if I would be willing to review one of their Birthday Gift Baskets, I jumped at the opportunity. I've ordered flowers from ProFlowers before, but I had no experience with their gift baskets.

I selected the Cherry Moon Farms Favorites as my complimentary gift box. Filled with fruit and nuts, and (my personal favorite) Jelly Belly jelly beans. Made specifically to satisfy both sweet and salty tastebuds, this gift box comes loaded with fresh fruit and three sealed packages of treats.

With the unexpected trip to the hospital this week, the arrival of this gift box came in perfect time. When I got back home on Thursday, the box waited for me outside. I was worried because it said "perishable", but the fruit arrived safe and sound. So far, everything that we have tried has been delicious. The jelly beans were gone before I could blink, and the pistachios are being nibbled on as I type this review. My husband loved the cinnamon toffee almonds, and the kids loved the softball sized apples. We can't wait to have the oranges and pears.

The Cherry Moon Farms Favorites box was marked as a best seller, and I can see why. At a price point of about $30 (on sale), it really does have something for everyone.

ProFlowers Birthday Gift baskets range from about $29.99-$99.99, and if a one time gift is not your style, you can take advantage of their Harvest Select Fruit Club. Choose 3, 6 or 12 month plans which ship the freshest fruits at the peak of their season straight to you or your loved ones door.

So the next time you wonder what you're going to get for your special someone, take a look at the assortment of Birthday Gifts on

Special thanks to our new friends at ProFlowers for allowing us to review this complimentary gift box.


Friday, July 2, 2010

Summer Safety Tips from Timon + Pumbaa + UL!

As a family living in Florida, water safety is a big part of our lives. We go to the beach, we swim in our pool, and our friend's in-the-ground pool, we go to water parks and springs throughout most of the year. Summer doesn't last only two and a half months down here, it lasts about 7 months and then (believe it or not) it's too chilly for us to be in the water unless it's heated or inside.

We had a pop up style pool last season, but the dog put an end to that at the beginning of this season. Needless to say, this season we've spent a lot of time at the beach and friend's pools. We are planning a trip to Aquatica after rainy-season is over.

Whether you live in the North, South, East or West, you and your children should check out the super cute video from UL and Disney's Timon & Pumbaa on being Wild about Safety: In the Water.

When most people think water safety, they think the usual stuff, like no running, stay near lifeguards, but what about wearing sunscreen and looking before you leap, or knowing where the UL listed life preservers are?

The kids will love watching it and so will parents, because it enforces all of the rules repeated throughout the summer. So stay safe this summer, and spread the word about this very important Water Safety message!

From UL:
From backyard tree houses, to jungle gyms, to neighborhood playgrounds, kids will be climbing and swinging all summer long. However, it’s important for parents to be aware of the potential dangers associated with play sets. Each year, more than 200,000 children ages 14 and younger go to the emergency room for play set-related injuries. That’s why Underwriters Laboratories (UL), a leading product safety testing organization, is providing easy-to-follow safety tips to help families “play it safe” this summer.

· Make sure your backyard is large enough for playground equipment. The site must also provide good visibility and security. Before setting up equipment, look out for obstacles, such as the garage, tree branches, utility poles and wires.
· Read and follow the manufacturer’s directions when setting up play set equipment. Be sure your child's weight and age fall within the manufacturer's recommended limits for the equipment.
· Install protective surfacing, such as rubber tiles or mulch under the play set, at least six feed in all directions, to prevent serious injuries should a child fall.

· Carefully inspect backyard playground equipment. Make sure equipment is anchored safely in the ground, all equipment pieces are in good working order, S-hooks are entirely closed and bolts are not protruding.
· Check for spaces that could trap children, such as openings in guardrails or between ladder rungs. These spaces should measure less than 3.5 inches or more than 9 inches.
· Always supervise children on play set equipment to make sure they are playing safely.
· Never attach ropes, jump ropes, clotheslines, pet leashes or cords of any kind to play set equipment. If used improperly, they can be potential strangulation hazards.
· Watch for potential trip hazards, such as rocks, tree stumps and concrete footings. Make sure you’re children are aware of them as well.
· Do a sandbox check. Before letting your child dig in, rake through the sand to check for debris or sharp objects. Also, inspect for any animal contamination or insect problems.

Summer Safety is so much more than around a pool or in your backyard. The best tip I have ever received is that it only takes a second for an accident to happen. Be alert, but have fun. Stay Safe, readers!

“I wrote this review while participating in a blog campaign by Mom Central on behalf of Underwriters Laboratories. Mom Central sent me a gift card to thank me for taking the time to participate.”



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