Thursday, March 31, 2016

Green Scene Mom Winter Award Giveaway

Winter Awards Giveaway Mommy Scene
We are very excited to announce the 2016 Winter Green Scene Mom Awards, celebrating Eco-friendly product design and creative innovation. The Winter GSM Award Winners include many products designed to meet a unique need for families with kids and encourage sustainable lifestyles. Enter to win a collection of prizes sponsored by these awesome brands!

Prizes

1. b.box Diaper Caddy + Sippy Cup. Award Details
2. ciao! baby portable high chair. Award Details
3. PouchBuddy food pouch feeding attachment. Award Details
4. Darlyng & Co. Yummy Mitt. Award Details
5. Milkies Milk Trays + Softies Nursing Pads + Milkies Nipple Balm. Award Details
6. Genesis 950 Cleaner - 1 gallon. Award Details
7. Liliputi Buckle Carrier. Award Details
8. Little Dundi Recycled Paperboard Clothes Hangers - 2 sets. Award Details
9. Sudsy Dough Moldable Soap + Cozy Blanket Pouch + Ocean Discovery Box by Revelae Kids. Award Details
10. MAM Baby Brush Set + Cooler Teether. Award Details
11. Silkberry Baby Organic Footed Sleeper - Silver Cloud Owl. Award Details
12. Choice of 1 Zippy OneZ, Zipadee-Zip, Flying Squirrel, or Trendy Teether by Sleeping Baby Inc. Award Details
13. Zipzicle Ice Pop Sleeves - 2 sets of 4. Award Details
14. Wristy Buddy Octopus teething wristband. Award Details

Winter Awards Giveaway Mommy Scene

Enter to win these fabulous prizes!

This giveaway is hosted by Mommy Scene and the sponsoring brands and is open to US entries. One winner will be chosen and displayed on the giveaway widget after the giveaway ends on April 29th, 2016. Mommy Scene and participating blogs are not responsible for fulfilling brand-sponsored prizes. Prizes will be shipped directly from each brand.

Other 2016 Winter Green Scene Mom Award Winners

Buttons Cloth Diapers - Award Details
Coco & Kiwi Sydney Diaper Bag & Training Pants - Award Details
Crane smartDROP Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier & Travel Humidifier - Award Details
Winter Green Scene Mom Awards Mommy Scene
Enchanted Slumber All-In-One Organic Sleeper - Award Details
Wicks Beauty Baby Butter - Award Details
Woolino 4 Season Sleep Sack - Award Details
Woombie Air-Wrap & Organic Swaddle - Award Details


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Crayola Explosion

** This is not a sponsored post **

I feel like kids watch too much television these days, and sometimes I feel like it's a necessary evil. I try not to use television to buy me time to do things all the time, and today I opted for painting time in the kids' toy room. Bobble and Squiggle had begged all morning, and they even cleaned up their room so they could paint in there. The floor is a hard floor, so it works fairly well. No carpet to worry about messing up.

I needed just a little bit of time. The tiniest bit of time. Two cartoons would have done it (about 30-40 minutes), or part of a movie, even. Still, they want to paint. I want to let them do stuff away from the television. I allow it. I grab the Crayola Washable Kids' Paint, the paintbrushes, and some paper. They sit down quietly and start to paint.

Now, I'd like to point out that in the recent past, painting has gone quite well with them.


They focus quite well on the task at hand, even when the wind is trying to blow away their pictures (which is why there are rocks on the corners). The paints above are Crayola Washable Kids' Paint (paint pots), and though they don't hold much paint (which was bad for Squiggle since she scoops globs of paint out versus dipping and painting like Bobble), they worked nicely while they lasted. This gave me hope that this painting time would go well.

Their play room is directly above my head as I am washing and chopping potatoes, carrots, and celery. (Well, I peeled the carrots, too.) I hear them chatting as they paint. I hear excited foot steps from time to time, and I imagine them running over for a new sheet of paper from the pile. I wonder how bad the mess will be when I go up there, but still. Creative time. Cooking time. It was working.

... until I realized it wasn't. Bobble comes down the stairs and says that they started painting with their feet. I look at him, pause for a second, and then tell him, "Okay... I want you to go back upstairs until you are done painting, then call for me." I cringed a bit as he ran back up the (carpeted) stairs.

They decide they are done and they come downstairs, bringing with them containers of empty paint. Containers that were full when they started. I guessed that Squiggle glopped paint onto her paper since she doesn't dip her brush so much as scoop with her brush. I directed them towards the bathroom and asked them to clean up.

Then I go upstairs.



I stare blankly at the disaster, come downstairs, grab my phone, and record the explosion of colour in video and colour.

It was at this moment that I noticed the slogan on the (now empty) box of paint: Washability You Can Trust!




I sure hope so, Crayola. I sure hope so.

I grab dirty towels, a garbage bag, and a bottle of vinegar, then head back upstairs. I noticed the cup of water they were cleaning their brushes off with, and decided to utilize that water. This is water-soluble paint, right? It worked well, and I started pouring the water all over the dried paint that decorated our floor.

Pushing the towels across the floor, you could see the paint that it loosened just pushing away with the excess water that wasn't getting absorbed.



It didn't really make me scrub hard or anything, just wiping enough to make my arms tired after the millionth minute. I didn't need to use the vinegar at all.



It washed off the floor easily. It washed off the walls easily. It washed off the kids easily.



...but what about the laundry!? Her cute dress, the towels used to clean the mess... they are really testing Crayola's claim!

The open(ish) towel is a light blue normally, the wadded towel on the bottom is a medium-light brown. I used more towels than this, but this was just a sampling.

I washed them with our regular laundry detergent (some random store brand of free & clear detergent), dried them, and here they are:

I didn't take a picture of any of these towels open because I can't tell which ones I used for cleanup! I know the brown on top was used and the bright blue below it was used because those are the only two that colour in the load. I don't know which of the lighter blue (on the right) were used. The wipes in the picture were not used in cleanup, but are now stained.
Much cleaner than it was, but visibly stained.

Bottom half of the dress

Bottom section of dress on the back/side of dress
As far as the claim on washability, I'm split. The floor (walls, desk, table...) were a surprisingly easy clean. It gave me faith that the laundry stood a fighting chance... and the towels came out great. I can't tell which ones I used. The wipes that happened to be in the load with them (that weren't used on any paint) are very stained (they were white), and the dress is much cleaner, but it's not clean. The dress is definitely a crafting dress now, sadly. The confusing part of that (to me) is that the dress and towels are both cotton, and the wipes were cotton, hemp, and bamboo. If it washed out of the cotton towels, why didn't it wash out of the cotton dress?

I do need to thank you, Crayola, for living up to your claim in ease of clean up. I just wish it washed out of the clothing, too!

Over all, I'd recommend the products. They washed off the surfaces and children very easily. I would just recommend using old clothing that you don't care about while they paint (unless your kids will actually keep a smock on... mine won't!), or buy plain white clothes for craft time so they slowly become "artistic" looking clothes. My kids love tie dye, so I'm sure they'd love "painted" clothing. I just wish it wasn't this cute little dress that had to be the casualty!

Disclaimer: Thoughts of Fluff is responsible for the content of this post. Crayola did not sponsor this post in any way. All products mentioned above were purchased by me, and all opinions are my own and may differ from those of your own.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Blink: The World’s Fastest Game! (Game Review)

Bobble loved UNO so much that it was all he wanted to play. I love UNO, don’t get me wrong… but it’s nice to change it up a bit. I searched around and finally came across a game called Blink. I had never heard of it, but not only did it seem to be similar to UNO, but sounded like it would always be a fast game. This was a perk for me since playing UNO can take a long time if the cards aren’t in your favour. The game is supposed to be for only 2 players, but you can play with more, it just goes more quickly. If you plan on frequently playing with 4 players or more, I would recommend purchasing two decks.



Blink is played like a cross between UNO and Speed. You deal out the cards for a pile, making certain each player has the same amount. With two players, you would deal 30 cards to each person, and that pile is placed between you on the table. Each of you place one card down in the center of the table, and draw three cards from your pile to be in your hand.

Example of a game set up with the "hand" on the table for the picture
So, unlike UNO, you have two discard piles and your draw pile is only yours, nobody shares it. You can only have 3 cards in your hand at a time. This was really helpful since Bobble has small hands and can’t hold many cards at once. When you’re ready to play, you both flip over your single card in the middle of the table and start matching. The first person to get rid of all their cards from their hand and draw pile wins.

Example of the cards (colours, shapes, numbers)
Blink cards have different shapes, numbers of shapes, and colours. There are no actual numbers shown on the cards. You can match by any of these three mediums, so if a card with 2 blue stars on it is face up, you could play a card that has stars, a card that is blue, or a card that has two of a shape on it (example below).

If the 2 blue stars card was turned up, the three cards below it in this picture would all be playable due to shape, number, or colour!

To start out, I had Grandma play a game with me and let Bobble watch. To help him understand how we could play a card when we did, we played more slowly, and would say “Shape”, “Number”, or “Colour” when we played a card. He insisted on playing right away, and he had his chance within two minutes. The game is really, really fast. It might have not taken that long had we not slowed down for him to watch and understand.

We made sure to go quite slowly the first time we played with him so he could have time to wrap his mind around the three ways to match. He didn’t seem to have a problem catching on to all three matching options, but it did take a little time to get used to seeing the number of shapes on a card versus a numerical character.

This game is great for when you have only a couple minutes to play something since it goes so quickly. Since the deck only has 60 cards total, it’s really easy to accommodate for 3 or 4 players since it can be divided evenly for them, you would just have more discard piles to play on in the center of the table. Of course, with 4 players, you’d have a super small draw pile and it might not be much fun. I’ve only played with 2 and 3 players, and I have considered buying 2 more decks to mix together so I have a deck for 2-3 players and a deck for more than 3 players.

I wanted a game a little more challenging for Bobble, and this was a great option. Not only does it bring about more options for matching, but you encourage rapid recognition as well. With younger children you definitely want to work up to the speed aspect, but it keeps it fun as they grow.

No reading is necessary to play this game.

Blink can be purchased at retail stores for around $6.


Disclaimer: Thoughts of Fluff is responsible for the content of this post. All products mentioned were purchased by me, and all opinions are my own and may differ from those of your own.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

(Almost) free produce for chickens

Anyone that has chickens they care for know how much chickens love to eat fresh fruits and veggies. You especially know this if you have a garden and your chicken have ever wandered into it. I love letting my girls eat stuff from our garden since they love to eat the bugs there, too. I try to keep an eye on them so they move through quickly and don’t eat the food we need, too.

This is hard to do in the winter when you live where it gets to freezing temperatures, but thankfully they love scraps from dinner. It’s not the same as fresh veggies. I saw a post online somewhere about someone getting produce from a grocery store that was going to be thrown away. I thought I should try this and see what luck I had.

I asked at our local grocery, and they went to the back and got a huge box, pulled all the produce they pulled that day out of the (food) waste bin, and slapped a price sticker on it for one dollar. Pretty sure the person I got this idea from (I really wish I could remember who it was… if anyone knows, please let me know so I can link to them!) didn’t pay for the food, but I’m pretty excited that I got so much food for $1. Honestly, much of it was stuff that I would still eat. A tomato with a wrinkly spot on one side, a green pepper with the same wrinkle spot, a cucumber, a banana with brown spots, lettuce with a smidgen of brown in a tiny area, etc. There was so much of it! Well worth a dollar!



Now I call them in advance to see if it’s a good day to go in or not. Often times they will ask for a few hours (to keep pulling produce, but set it aside), so I call when I drop the kids off at school and pick the produce up just before I pick the kids up. On days they have “preppers”, I get strawberry scraps, grapes, apples, and other fresh fruits and veggies they wash and cut for “ready-to-eat” containers. Last time I even got a cauliflower! I have no idea what was wrong with it, but I do promise the store employees it won’t be for human consumption, so I gave it to the girls. They love cauliflower, if you’re curious!

I have asked at a few places and many of them say they can’t give the produce (for numerous reasons... one place sends their scraps to be composted), but if you can find one that does, then you can cost-effectively provide fresh produce for your chickens regardless of the weather outside!


Disclaimer: Thoughts of Fluff is responsible for the content of this post. All opinions are my own and may differ from those of your own.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Sorry! (Game Review)

Bobble is a fan of all games, not just card games. I saw one of the older versions of Sorry! at a yard sale last summer, and I insisted we buy it. It was only $0.50. Hard to argue that price! Up until that point, Bobble hadn’t played many board games other than his Super Why game and Chutes & Ladders. The Sorry! board isn’t as animated or bright, but he didn’t care. He was just excited to learn the game.



Sorry! is a 4 player game that is recommended for ages 6 and up. The basic premise of Sorry! is to get your 4 pawns out of start and into home. The first person to get all 4 pawns into Home first is the winner. The rules of the newest version of Sorry! is quite different, and please keep that in mind while reading this. I am playing with an older version that had the same rules as I grew up playing. In the older version, you can only move a pawn out of start if you draw a 1, a 2, or a Sorry! card. You can only move a pawn from your start and take the place of an opponent’s pawn on the board (their pawn goes back to their start) when you draw a Sorry! card. If nobody is out to use a Sorry! card on, you can’t move. The 2 card lets you move and then draw again. The 4 card makes you move backwards 4 spaces. The 7 card can be split between two pawns, or you can move one pawn forward 7 spaces. A 10 makes you move forwards 10 spaces or backwards 1. An 11 has you move 11 spaces forward, or you can switch places with an opponent on the board. The 3, 5, 8, and 12 cards only allow you to move forward that number. If you cannot move that number, you forfeit your turn.


As you can see, some of the instructions cards have more information on them than simply moving a pawn forward that number. Because of this, I was concerned Bobble wouldn’t be able to play for a while since he can’t read.

… I was wrong.

We would read what the cards said to him when we first started playing, but you’d be surprised at how well he retained that information. He knows what every single card can and cannot do. He cannot read yet, but that doesn’t stop him from understanding the somewhat complex rules (well, complex if you can’t read the instructions on the card!) and even beating us.

The biggest challenge Bobble has with Sorry! is not the instruction cards, but strategizing. He tends to target one person, usually his father, and then do whatever it takes to keep knocking that person off. Even if his dad had just gotten his first pawn onto the board (none in home) and someone else has 2 pawns in home and 2 pawns on the board, he would sorry his father instead. Sometimes that would make the other person win, within a couple turns, but he was happy so long as it wasn’t his target winning.

He’s getting over that novelty of just attacking someone and sabotaging their game play (thankfully, because my husband is really sick of it!), and now he’s considering what might be best for him before he moves. He still tends to move the first pawn he sees instead of looking at all his options, but he’s getting much better about it as a general whole. It took about 2 months of game play before he started trying to strategize versus sabotage.

Classic Sorry! looks different than the one pictured above, newer versions of Sorry! look very different, and the 2013 version only has 3 pawns and some fire and ice power ups. I’ve not played the newer version, though I’ve read that one power up makes a pawn move much faster around the board, the other can freeze them in place. I’ve heard mixed reviews on this, but I’m quite content with this older version of Sorry!... especially since mine only cost $0.50.

Classic Sorry! and the newer version with original rules can be purchased at most retailers for about $20, and the newer version for about $10.


Disclaimer: Thoughts of Fluff is responsible for the contents of this post. All products mentioned were purchased by me, and all opinions are my own and may differ from those of your own. 

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Geek it up!

Anyone out there looking for some geeky goods made by work-at-home-moms (WAHMs)? Check out the group Geek Chic Fleet Congo on FaceBook! Stocking is bi-monthly, and the stocking dates/times are announced monthly.

(taken from a post in the group):

Who are we and what do we do? 
We are a group of WAHM's that all make different and fantastic geeky goodies of all types. Looking for geeky goodies for your kiddos, geeky wall art, jewelry, purses, kitchen geekery, geekery for your vehicle, a geeky drinking receptacle? We have all that jazz & MORE!

Want to join as a wahm? 
Message an admin & if you offer a product that is different from what we already have in our conglomeration, adding you could be a possibility!

How this works: 
Each stocking, we'll have an album of goodies that are available. Once the stocking is live, comment on what you're wanting with your paypal email OR message the wahm if you aren't comfortable posting your email. 
 
Check out the group docs to view the list of WAHM's and absolutely fantastic geekery we offer!

Not only are all the items made with geeky care, but they are awesome! It's not every day you can find handmade items that look great, too!

There is currently a giveaway going on (for group members only, so join the group!) that will have 16 individual winners, and one grandprize winner. Here's the image from their giveaway (shared with permissions) to give you an idea of some of the items you can find in the group.



Happy shopping!

Disclaimer: Thoughts of Fluff was not compensated for this post. All opinions are my own and may differ from those of your own. 

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Help a pollinator out

As the weather is warming and flowers are sprouting, I thought I'd post a few early season tips to help out the pollinators!



1) Hold off a bit on mowing, or increase the height of the mower blade

Yes, many things (weeds) probably grow in your yard aside from grass. No, they probably aren't wanted by you. Those "weeds", however, are important foods to pollinators, especially the honeybee. Did you know that a dandelion can have up to 100 pollen and nectar packed florets? These are a crucial food source in the early part of the season! Just by raising the mower blade a little bit, you can make a difference in the food supply for the pollinators.

2) Plant for the seasons

Planting flowers for all seasons will help ensure food throughout the year. Plant early-blooming flowers like Heather or Rockcress to provide early food for the pollinators.

3) Plant in clusters

Multiple plants will provide more than single plants, naturally, so pollinators will be attracted to clusters.

4) Plant a variety of shapes

Not only will a variety of flower shapes add uniqueness to your garden, but it will help the pollinators out, too! Not all bees have the same size tongue, so having all sorts of different flowers will help ensure food for all pollinators.

5) Avoid buying plants/seeds pretreated with pesticides

Though you might not plan on using pesticides, that doesn't mean that the seeds or plants you want to buy don't already have them on it. Avoid purchasing products treated with neoinsecticides.


Disclaimer: Thoughts of Fluff is responsible for the content of this post. Thoughts of Fluff was not compensated for this post.


Sources:
http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/gardening-blog/2015/may/12/dandelions-pollinators-wildlife-garden
http://learn.eartheasy.com/2012/04/5-early-season-plants-which-attract-pollinators-to-your-garden/
http://www.fws.gov/pollinators/pollinatorpages/yourhelp.html
https://savebees.org/habitat/

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Uno! (Game Review)



One game that has gotten a lot of play recently has been UNO. Bobble loves this game, and it has been fun for involving other family members. UNO is recommended for children age 7 and up, and you can play it with 2 – 10 players. Bobble is just now 5 years old, but I think any child that knows their numbers and colours can play if you don’t play super competitively (at least to start out).
If you haven’t played UNO, the goal is to go out of cards first. You start with a set number (varies based on number of players), and you lay down cards one at a time, matching by colour or number. There are special cards like Reverse, Skip, Draw Two, Wild, and Wild Draw Four. When you get down to one card you have to say, “Uno”. If you lay your second-to-last card down and don’t say “Uno”, you have to draw two cards (if someone else notices).

We didn’t make Bobble draw cards for not saying “Uno” at first, but we would make other players draw. He caught on to calling other people out for not saying “Uno”, and we would prompt him when he was down to one card. After he got pretty good about calling “Uno” without us reminding him, we told him that we were going to start making him draw cards for not saying “Uno”, just like everyone else has to. We started by counting to 5 slowly in our heads before we told him to draw two cards, and we also didn’t continue play and looked at him, waiting. This let him know there was something more he should do. As he got really good at that, we would just pause for a second and see if he would say anything before he was forced to draw. Now we just make him draw. It took probably 2 weeks before we got to the point where we would just make him draw if he didn’t say it immediately. Now he tends to say “UNO!” as he’s placing his second-to-last card. He knows. J

This game has been helpful in encouraging Bobble to think about alternate plays. It took a little while for Bobble to catch on to using the cards to strategize, but he caught on to the matching colour right away. We helped him a lot with which cards were best to play at first, and explaining why, or we would play and he would help us lay cards down (and we’d explain why we played that card).
One thing that was hard for Bobble to catch on to was the order of turns after a reverse was played. When you’re just play with two people, it essentially acts as a skip since you’d just get to go again. When you play with more than two people, the order of play actually goes the other way. This confused him at first, but he caught on after a few times.

Another thing that he had trouble with was figuring out how to play cards in his favour (versus just doing whatever he wanted or could do). An example of this would be playing a wild card and naming the colour yellow when he only had one yellow card, but 4 blue cards. This was probably the hardest concept for him, actually. He would have a yellow Draw Two card, but that’s it, and he’d change it to yellow, then play his Draw Two, and have no other cards to play and end up drawing. He’s getting better at this, but he still hasn’t mastered the skill.

The difference between the Wild and the Wild Draw Four cards confuses him a bit sometimes, too. A Wild card can be played at any time during the game, regardless of whether you need to play it or not. A Wild Draw Four can only be used when you have no other options. If you play a Wild Draw Four when you have that colour or that number in your hand, you could be forced to draw cards if someone challenges that play. We haven’t introduced the challenging to Bobble, but we do make sure we ask him if he has anything that colour or any of that number because he can’t play that card otherwise.

You can keep score in UNO, but we also haven’t introduced that concept to him yet since he hasn’t fully grasped the concept of playing whatever is in his best interest. If your children are older, you can always incorporate scores into the mix. I think we won’t be doing that for a while.
This game is great for colour and number recognition, though younger children will need more reminders and instruction with special cards. UNO can be found at most retail stores, and is about $6.

*Please note that newer version of UNO have different graphics on the cards. Our version is older.


Disclaimer: Thoughts of Fluff is responsible for the content of this post. All products were purchased by me, and all opinions are my own and may differ from those of your own.

Monday, March 14, 2016

FitBit Blaze Giveaway

fitbitflayk
Welcome to the Get Organized + Fit with Flayk Giveaway!
Hosted by Conservamom

It can be a challenging task to get organized, especially once you have little children. Making sure we balance activities for everyone in the household can get tricky, so extra help in this daunting task is definitely welcome! As we all know, moms are a particular group that can be quite hard on themselves, which is why Flayk, a free, family/life management app now available for free download in both the Google Play Store and the iOS App Store is such a helpful tool. Flayk allows families to coordinate activities, assign responsibilities, share to-do and shopping lists and award points for completed actions in a single app that can be used by multiple families and groups. One of the app’s core features is the ability for users to flayk events, which alerts the group in the event of an unexpected conflict – from car trouble to a meeting that runs long –and allows someone else to quickly pick up the task and keep the day moving smoothly.

  flayk1

 As detailed in ADWEEK, Flayk is the perfect solution for families looking to simplify life in 2016 as well as a technology “must have” for the new aged organized family. Flayk Basic is free, and for a limited time, Flayk Premium, a seamless, ad-free experience with expanded features, is free for the first month. Flayk Premium is regularly priced at $1.99/month or $18.99/year. Flayk is the only family management app on the market to introduce an innovative rewards system that lets families assign point values to specific activities. Family members can earn points for completing tasks and redeem them for specific rewards of the family’s choosing, for example, a raise in allowance, a curfew extension, dinner at a favorite restaurant or a pass on a chore.

flayk_devices_720_2

Flayk recognizes that diversity with its customizable, central hub to organize all kinds of families, whether they live under one roof or are in multiple locations. In spirit of holding on to those 2016 Mom Resolutions and preparing for the spring season ahead, Flayk is offering a chance to win an all new Fitbit Blaze™ - Fitbit's New Smart Fitness Watch including a breakthrough features such as PurePulse™ Heart Rate Monitor, Connected GPS, On-Screen Workouts and Color Touchscreen.FITBIT-blaze

 Make sure to enter by downloading the Flayk app (IOS or Android) and setting up a profile!
Disclosure: All opinions are 100% mine. This giveaway is in no way associated with, sponsored, administered, or endorsed by Facebook, Twitter, Google, Pinterest or any other social media network.All opinions and experiences are Conservamom‘s. Open to US residents only , must be 18+. Confirmed Winner(s) will be contacted through email and have 48 hours to respond before a new winner will be drawn. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. The sponsor will be responsible for product fulfillment to winner(s) of the giveaway. The disclosure is done in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 10 CFR, Part 255 Guides Concerning the use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. For questions or to see your product featured in an Event you can contact Elia At Conservamom

Eco-Home Giveaway

Eco-Home Giveaway - Mommy Scene
Eco-Home Giveaway - Mommy Scene
We're celebrating the coming of spring with our Eco-Home Giveaway, sponsored by Mommy Scene and featuring products that help make life more Eco-friendly! All of the sponsoring brands offer products designed with families in mind, to encourage greener lifestyles. Check out these awesome brands and enter to win an amazing prize set below!
Eco-Home Giveaway - Thinkbaby and Thinksport

Thinkbaby | Thinksport

Prize: Thinkbaby GO2 Container + GO4TH 350ml + Stainless Steel Baby Bottle OR Sippy Cup OR Thinkster - winners choice + Thinkbaby Safe Sunscreen, 6 ounces
Thinkbaby and Thinksport's founder, Kevin Brodwick, brought his interest in health and preventative medicine and his background in biotechnology together to form a company whose sole purpose is to create alternative products for babies to athletes alike. With a team of physicians and scientists focused on the latest biological and chemical sciences, Thinkbaby and Thinksport continue to lead in the usage of safe, non-toxic materials for consumer goods. Thinkbaby and Thinksport's efforts are further energized by working with both leading child and health advocacy partners and like-minded individuals. Learn more at gothinkbaby.com.
Eco-Home Giveaway - Crane Grey Droplet Humidifier

Crane

Prize: Crane Grey Droplet Humidifier
Crane's Droplet Humidifiers are a half gallon cool mist humidifier that runs for up to 15 hours. They are whisper quiet during operation, do not require a filter and they are energy efficient requiring less energy than a standard household lightbulb to run. All Crane cool mist humidifiers use an anti-microbial material to help fight bacteria buildup. Crane USA was founded with the continuing goal to "Design for Better Living." For everything from natural cold and flu remedies to relieving croup in infants, Crane's cool mist humidifiers are the perfect addition to any child or adult's room. Learn more at crane-usa.com.
Eco-Home Giveaway - Fresh Wave natural products

Fresh Wave

Prize: Full Size Set of Fresh Wave products
Fresh Wave natural odor-removing products use simple, pure and natural ingredients to actually remove odors from your life. No harsh chemicals. No harmful ingredients. No masking fragrances. Fresh Wave products remove the odor at its source - on the molecular level. With Fresh Wave, odors go away. Happiness stays. Products are available at Target, Bed Bath & Beyond and Ace Hardware. Learn more at freshwaveworks.com.
Eco-Home Giveaway - Little Dundi Eco-friendly hangers

Little Dundi

Prize: 2 sets of Eco-friendly Hangers - choose from 6 designs
Little Dundi brings to life products inspired by baby. Our innovative line of Eco-friendly clothes hangers started with a cloud shaped infant sized model has grown to include hangers sized for toddlers & kids clothing. These hangers come in 6 attractive prints and are made of thick and sturdy recycled paperboard with an aqueous coating for a more polished look. All glues used are vegetable starch based and the inks are water based. Our hangers are our way of being friendly to the Earth. Learn more at littledundi.com.
Eco-Home Giveaway - Recycled Beachfront Baby Wrap

Beachfront Baby

Prize: Recycled Beachfront Baby Wrap
Beachfront Baby makes fashionable water baby carriers! Each Beachfront Baby Wrap made with 100% Repreve PC polyester contains approximately 15 plastic water bottles! Each Recycled Wrap comes with its own matching drawstring carry bag, which is also made with Repreve, and our packaging for this wrap is printed on 100% recycled paper. Made in the USA, all our carriers are sewn with care by work-at-home-moms in the San Antonio, Texas area. Learn more at beachfrontbabywraps.com.
Eco-Home Giveaway - Wicks Beauty

Wicks Beauty

Prize: Gift set of top sellers: Neem Skin Salve, Bentonite Clay Mask, Sea Salt Face Scrub, and Lavender Goat Milk Soap
Wicks Beauty is offering a gift set of a few of our top sellers: Neem skin salve, bentonite clay mask, sea salt face scrub, and lavender goat milk soap - a $36 value! Wicks features a family-focused array of products made with all-natural oils and butters that detox and heal skin while protecting its natural moisture. Our products help soothe and prevent eczema, psoriasis, and acne. Breathe new life into tired skin the natural way. Check out our line for babies and pets! Learn more at wicksbeauty.com.
Eco-Home Giveaway - Silikids

Silikids

Prize: $50 gift set including newly released silicone cups, straws & universal fit straw and sippy tops
Siliskin Silicone Cups are made with 100% food grade silicone with an embedded stainless steel ring so they won't collapse when gripped. Dishwasher safe and great for indoor and outdoor use.
Siliskin Universal Silicone Sippy Tops fit over any size cup. The silicone top grips the cup top while air suction keeps it in place. The spout is free of intricate valves allowing for easy use and cleaning. Also dishwasher safe and perfect for on-the-go and indoor and outdoor use.
Siliskin Universal Straw Tops stretch over and grip the top of glasses of multiple sizes, while also kept in place with air suction. Use with a Siliskin silicone cup or a glass of your choice for an instant, no-spill straw top cup.
Silikids products are safe, modern & practical, easy to clean, and made from 100% food grade silicone. A great alternative to plastic! Learn more at silikids.com.
Eco-Home Giveaway - Sudsy Dough

Sudsy Dough Moldable Soap

Prize: 12 oz. tub of Sudsy Dough with surprise toy inside! Fragrance of choice
Sudsy Dough is an interactive bath toy that doubles as a moldable scented dough and a cleansing soap. Kids can squeeze and squish Sudsy Dough in the bath, rub it on as body wash, or take it outside the tub and make custom-shaped soaps that will dry when left out in open air. Sudsy Dough is scented and infused with moisturizing ingredients such as Shea Butter and beeswax. Each ball also has a surprise bath toy hidden inside! Available fragrances include Merry Mango, Sassy Strawberry, Awesome Apple, and Bubbly Blueberry. Learn more at revelae.com.
Eco-Home Giveaway - Yummi Pouch Snack Bags

Yummi Pouch

Prize: Set of 3 cloth snack or sandwich bags, style of choice
Take snacks on the go with Yummi Pouch cloth snack and sandwich bags. Our cloth bags are lined with a moisture resistant interior and decorated with colorful prints, choose from 16 cute patterns! Perfect for crackers, sandwiches, and dry snacks, or small items like bottle parts, teethers, and hair accessories! They open with a silent zipper that's simple enough for a child to use. Reduce the trash during lunchtime or organize your purse with our modern cloth bags. Learn more at revelae.com.
Eco-Home Giveaway - Back Buddy Support Pillow

Back Buddy

Prize: Back Buddy Support Pillow
Back Buddy is an award-winning maternity and feeding support pillow, designed by a Chiropractor and nursing mother. It alleviates common back pain during and after pregnancy, and provides comfort and support for mom while holding or feeding baby. Made in the USA from high-quality structural foam that is certified to be made WITHOUT harmful PBDE flame retardants, phthalates, CFC's, formaldehyde, mercury, lead, and other heavy metals, and is tested for performance, durability, and emissions.
Learn more at back-buddy.com.
Eco-Home Giveaway - hipNgo

hipNgo

Prize: hipNgo - brand new, black on black design or color of choice
The hipNgo provides the ideal child carrying solution for the family with an active lifestyle and a busy toddler. The patented saddle seat centers the child against the adult hip and provides proper weight distribution, relieving strain on the arms, shoulder and hands. The simplistic shape, size and weight offer families on the go, a handy solution to the challenges of traveling with a toddler. The hipNgo can be adjustable for male or female versatility, left or right handed dexterity, as well as large and small build body types. Say goodbye to the bulky stroller and say hello to the 5-ounce hipNgo with its own storage bag. Available in several colors as well as classic black. Learn more at hipngo.com.

Enter to win these great prizes!

Eco-Home Giveaway - Mommy Scene
This giveaway is sponsored by Mommy Scene and is open to US entries. One winner will be chosen and displayed on the giveaway widget after the giveaway ends on March 28th, 2016. Mommy Scene and the participating blogs are not responsible for fulfilling brand-sponsored prizes. Prizes will be shipped directly from each brand.

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Mommy Scene Blog Street Team


Thursday, March 10, 2016

Introduction to Seedles

A while back I was browsing various wildflowers, hoping to find some seeds native to my area that would benefit the honeybees as well. Though I'm sure most of you are well aware of how important the honeybee is, I'll throw a few facts* your way:
  • 1 in 3 mouthfuls of food we eat benefit (indirectly or directly) from honeybee pollination
  • 40% of honeybee colonies in the U.S. are dying each year
  • The food (seeds, berries, etc.) consumed by other animals rely on pollination from honeybees
Everyone depends on honeybees, and I wanted to plant some pretty flowers that would help the bees out. Flowers are important to me, bees are important to the world, why not plant something that would be great for everyone?


That's when I found Seedles. Seedles are a fun way to help kids help the bees. The seeds in these little balls are native seeds, and non-gmo, and the balls are made from compost, clay, and biodegradable earth-based pigments. These little balls hold the seeds and nutrients for them, but they help protect them from being consumed. To get the Seedles growing, you just need to give them water and light!



You can use your Seedles a few different ways. You could have your children push them a little bit in to dirt in a pot to grow inside, push them half way into the dirt outside, or you could just seed bomb. (If you don't know what seed bombing is, it's when you essentially throw the seed balls in hopes of them establishing, often in places that are not very pretty like fenced off and abandoned areas or the side of the road... since these can be thrown, you don't end up trespassing, either!)



Worried about the Seedles not being native to your area? Don't! Seedles took care of that for you already! Using their region map, you can make sure you order the Seedles that are native to your area. Seedles sent me a pack of their Wildflower Seedles to review, but they have more than just wildflower options. They also offer (organic) herb Seedles, hummingbird and butterfly Seedles, and more. Check out their products page to see all they have to offer!

Because these are sent by region, I was sent the Midwest Wildflower Seedles pack. The kids were super excited to see the colourful little balls, and even more excited when I told them we could grow flowers from them.

I was surprised to see a bar of their honeycomb soap and a little hard honey candy in the package. I have no idea what the honey candy tasted like, as Bobble swiped it quickly, but he said it was good. I'll have to take his word for it!



We set up a little pot and let the kids each plant one Seedle inside, and we will plant the rest of them outside. There will be more posts about Seedles as they grow.


Of course, we don't want to make you wait until later this summer to see how awesome they are, we want you to try them now, too! Planting season is quickly approaching, after all!



Enter below for your chance to win a wildflower pack for your region! Due to the regional availability, this giveaway is for the continental United States only. If you live outside this area, you can still enter to send to a friend that is within that region, it will just be shipped directly to them! 

To make it even more fun, there will be two giveaways! The first giveaway will be for the Midwestern Wild Flower Seedles, and will only be open to the states shown in their region map as "midwestern" (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, and Wisconsin). The second giveaway will be open to the continental US!


GIVEAWAY #1: Midwest Wildflower Seedles (winner/recipient must reside in one of the following states: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, and Wisconsin.)

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GIVEAWAY #2: Wildflower Seedles (Winner/recipient must reside within the continental US.)


Disclaimer: Thoughts of Fluff was sent the above product to facilitate the review. This did not sway my opinion in any way, and all opinions in this review are my 100% honest opinion. All opinions are my own and may differ from those of your own.