Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Introducing the LeapPad Ultra

A few weeks ago, I shared a little bit about the LeapPad Ultra. It is an amazing tablet designed specifically for kids ages 4 - 9.

Now, you can pre-order the LeapPad Ultra. Due to overwhelming interest, is sold out of the LeapPad Ultra pre-orders, but you can still visit to find partnering retailers.

My son just turned 4 and he would LOVE this tablet. Right now, he just uses my iPhone or the family iPad to play educational games, but it always makes me very nervous. I'm afraid he will accidentally break something, move icons around, or change my settings. Plus, I'm afraid of the crazy things out there that a 4 year old could accidentally come across.

The LeapPad Ultra would be perfect for Benjamin. It is built very sturdy with kids in mind. There are no delicate glass screens to break easily. I also love that there are educator approved games and apps that are easy to load and access. Plus, there is wifi connectivity with a great browser built just for young kids, keeping their little eyes safe and protected while surfing the web. Plus, of course it is so cute, and a great opportunity to teach your kids about taking good care of something that is theirs and important to them. I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Getting Organized with All Access Organizers

“This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group™ and Home Depot & Rubbermaid, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #AllAccessOrganizers”

There isn't much I love more than a great organizer. The best organizer stores a lot, is easy to use and access, and looks cute. These Rubbermaid All Access Organizers do all three! When I first saw these awesome organizers, I knew I wanted to use them to organize my craft supplies. I love the idea of being able to see the colorful items inside like yarn, partially because it's pretty, and partially because it will be easier for me to remember where everything is.

However, when I headed to Home Depot with my kids to pick some out, my son was obsessed with the blue ones and asked me to get some for his room. We really needed some sort of storage solution for next to his desk, and I knew these would be perfect.

Benjamin loves his new organizers. He loves how he can see his toys and open the door himself to get a new toy out to play with on his desk.

Here are some of the great features of these All Access Organizers:

  • They open even when stacked
  • It's easy to see what's inside
  • It's easy to access what's inside
  • They stack well
  • You can open them from the top or the front
  • They're cute!

The other great thing is that my son can actually see (and remember) his toys. Sometimes we've kept toys in bins in his closet, and we both forget about some of them. With these organizers, he's able to see them, and play with them. Even as I was setting them up, he got all excited again about his wooden stacker toy.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Burlap and Gold Banner

I love it when rustic is combined with modern and elegant. For example, brown kraft paper packages topped with bright and colorful ribbon. That's why I was thrilled to get to try out some of the products from the line of David Tutera Casual Elegance, as a part of a sponsored review through Blueprint Social. This line is geared towards weddings, but almost all of the products are fantastic for parties, entertaining, and decor. I love the combination of natural burlap, with frilly white lace that is seen throughout the line.

I had already been dying to make something with burlap and glittery gold, and I knew it would be perfect to go along with the other Casual Elegance products.

What you need:
1. Burlap (Mine came from the David Tutera Casual Elegance Collection)
2. Twine (Also from the collection)
3. Gold Spray Paint
4. Gold Glitter
5. Newspapers and Tape
6. Tan or Brown Felt
7. Glue Gun (or Fabric Glue)

What you do:
1. Cut your burlap into little banner shapes.

2. Line up your pieces of burlap side by side on top of newspaper. Lay another piece of newspaper across the top (where you want natural burlap to show through), and secure with painter's tape.

3. Spray paint the bottom part of the burlap. Add a good amount of fine gold glitter as you go. It will stick to the spray paint if you apply it before it dries. You could also probably just buy a glittery gold spray paint, but I like how this effect turned out.

4. Let the pieces dry. Cut a long piece of twine or ribbon.

5. Flip over the pieces of burlap. Cut out pieces of tan or brown felt to fit over the back of the twine. This step also helps keep the burlap from falling apart. Use a glue gun to attach the felt around the back of the twine. Make sure you don't use too much glue, or it will seep through the burlap and show up on the front of your banner.

6. Enjoy! This banner is great for a party or celebration, and works well with the rest of the Casual Elegance collection (like these AMAZING chalkboard signs!)

Do you love the combination of rustic and chic? Do you want to keep up with the David Tutera Casual Elegance collection? You can follow along on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest.

Check out what other talented Bloggers have made using this collection:

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

LeapPad Ultra Sweepstakes

Let me introduce you to the LeapPad Ultra. With sturdy construction, child-safe wi-fi access, a 7 inch screen, and over 800 educator approved games and apps, the LeapPad Ultra truly is the ultimate tablet for kids.

What's great, is that you can enter daily to win your very own LeapPad Ultra in this ultimate SWEEPSTAKES. All you have to do is enter your name and email. Plus, you can then invite up to five friends to enter as well. If any of them win a LeapPad Ultra, you'll win one too!

Want to know more about the LeapPad Ultra? Here are some great features of this tablet:
  • Play, draw and write on a 7” hi-res screen, designed with feather-light responsiveness for a kid’s touch.
  • Capture your world in two ways with front-and-back cameras and video recorders.
  • Check out new creative tools with enhanced Photo and Art Studio apps, and jam to music with the built-in MP3 player.
  • Kids can even chat and play peer-to-peer in two included apps!
  • Enjoy the instant fun of Wi-Fi in a secure, kid-friendly tablet.
  • LeapPad Ultra works with LeapFrog’s award-winning library of 800+ educator-approved apps, games, eBooks, videos, music and more.
  • Connect LeapPad Ultra to the LeapFrog Learning Path to see the details of your child’s play and learning, including levels achieved, skills practiced and recently played games.
Be sure to enter the Sweepstakes for your chance to win a LeapPad Ultra. Plus check back next week for more details on how to pre-order your very own!

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

DIY Reed Diffuser Cover (Inspired by All You Magazine)

This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and All You, but all my opinions are my own. #lifeforless #pmedia

A couple of weeks ago, I got a chance to check out All You Magazine for the first time. All You is awesome! It's perfect for someone like me, a crafty mom looking for great ideas, recipes, and money saving options. The coupons alone easily make the magazine worth it. I was thrilled to find that Publix started carrying All You Magazine, and hurried over to buy the July copy.

By far my favorite section of the magazine, was a little crafty show down, that is going to be a new monthly feature. Two craft/DIY bloggers went head to head with one challenge. I was thrilled to recognize both bloggers, who were already two of my favorites! (I won't tell you who, you'll just have to find out for yourselves. You can search here to see where All You is available near you.)

The Challenge: Take a tin can, and create a project for $5 or less that takes only 3 steps. Fun!

I decided to use Popsicle sticks to make a reed diffuser cover, but you could also use this cute little container as a lantern, a vase, a flower pot, or a pencil holder.

What you need:

1. A Tin Can
2. Popsicle Sticks
3. Paint and Brushes
4. A Glue Gun
5. Scissors
6. Optional Embellishments

What you do:

Step 1: Cut the bottoms off of your Popsicle sticks so that they are all the exact same height.

Step 2: Paint the Popsicle sticks. I painted half white and half neon pink. I wanted a little bit of the wooden texture and color to show through, so I painted a few very thin coats.

Step 3: Start gluing the sticks to the can with a hot glue gun. Put the glue on the back of the stick, right down along the center.

And you're done!

I can't wait to check out next month's All You Magazine to see the craft blogger challenge! I know that I'll be grabbing it off the shelves when I'm shopping for groceries at Publix next month.

Have you read All You Magazine? What aspect of the magazine would you be most interested in? What would you create for the tin can crafty challenge? 

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

A Cars Dream Party Celebration

I was able to throw this birthday celebration as a part of a sponsored post through Collective Bias. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. #dreamparty #cbias

My son Benjamin turns 4 this month, and we wanted to throw him an early birthday party to help celebrate with some extended family. What's great, is that Walmart and Hallmark have teamed up and created a great selection of everything you will possibly need for a theme party. I think I'll be headed back in December to throw my daughter a Disney Princess party. You can see my whole shopping story here. Plus, there is a great selection of birthday cakes at Walmart, like this incredible Disney Pixar Cars Cake. My son was giddy jumping up and down when he saw the cake!

I taped Instagram pictures to the blue and silver balloon strings. The effect is really amazing, especially in person. We all loved looking at all the little pictures of Benjamin as we celebrated his birthday. I taped pictures to both sides, to give a little more weight to the balloons.

I especially love this pop up Mater snack holder, and the kids love it too! It is a fun and perfect way to serve popcorn, or cookies, or chips, and it only takes about two or three minutes to assemble.

We were thrilled to find a whole new selection of Disney Pixar Cars die cast cars, like a lot of the characters from the first Cars movie. We got Benjamin Flo and Sarge as little early birthday presents. Benjamin also really loved his special birthday medal. 

And of course, Benjamin and Lyla had to play in their Cars for a little while.

I can't get over this fantastic cake. All of the little details are adorable from the cones to the grass. It's also great that this cake (and other similar ones) are available at Walmart. I would recommend calling or stopping by at least 24 hours in advance, to make sure they will have time to decorate the cake you want.

We went ahead and got some Cars party favors at Walmart too, for when Benjamin has a party with his friends. These tire yo-yos are so cute.

Benjamin loved his little Cars party, down to every detail. He came over to me after we'd eaten the cake and said "Mommy, I'm older now. I'm 4." I had to explain to him that this was an early birthday party, and that he wouldn't turn 4 until his actual birthday. He said, "Oh, my Cars birthday didn't work." He didn't seem at all upset, but he was thinking, we'll have to try again and maybe the next time the party will make me turn 4. He cracks me up!


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