Reviews, giveaways and memes - Jumpin Beans


5 Reasons to Teach Your Baby to Read - Guest Post

I posted before about J. Richard Gentry.

Please click HERE to read more about his book.

5 Reasons to Teach Your Baby to Read

By J. Richard Gentry PhD

Infant and toddler brains appear to be well-suited for reading. Thousands of parents worldwide are having success teaching their babies to read using books and other fun literacy activities, games, and even multimedia reading programs. With 4 out of 10 American eight-year-olds unable to read proficiently, I encourage parents, who are children's first reading teachers, to get their young children off to a good start before they get to kindergarten.

Here are five reasons to teach your baby or toddler to read.

Zero to age six is when language proficiency develops in the brain.

Well before your child can speak or read, she is absorbing language at a phenomenal pace. In the first year of life, her brain will triple in size; by the time she enters kindergarten, it will be almost as big as yours. It is during this critical period that many of the neural pathways establishing language proficiency are formed. This is why, as your child's first reading teacher, it is so crucial to make the most of these early years by introducing reading as joyful play.

Early literacy engagement gives your baby an enormous advantage.

Spending just a few minutes a day engaging your baby or toddler in literacy activities that include lots of speech and positive parent/child interaction, along with traditional techniques such as reading aloud, may give your baby a 32-million-word advantage by kindergarten over children who did not get this exposure; some neuroscientists even report that early intervention with appropriate literacy activity can make your child less likely to develop learning problems such as dyslexia.

For babies and toddlers, literacy activities are fun, not work.

Learning to read is work for the six-year-old beginner, but it's play for babies and toddlers, and it's amazing what they can pick up. Go to YouTube and search baby reading to see toddlers who can show you how well they read, not just words, but easy books and signs they haven't seen before. In my book, I include age-appropriate games and activities very young children love to do with their favorite reading teacher -- their parent -- which develop reading and writing skills while your baby is having fun.

Babies' brains are uniquely suited to early reading.

In my experience, all babies have special capacity for perceiving patterns and connecting symbols with meaning, which can begin as early as eight months of age. All babies have good recognition memory and novelty preference, so they enjoy looking at pictures and word cards with their parents. Perceiving patterns and connecting symbols with meaning is what reading is all about. When shown contrasting word patterns five minutes a day in a joint media engagement with their parents, two and three-year-olds can intuit phonics. This is true for parents who are using multimedia technology such as "Your Baby Can Read," in addition to reading aloud and sharing books.

Babies' right-brain learning gives them special capacities for reading.

Childhood education experts who have only studied school-aged children incorrectly assume that babies and toddlers must learn to read like six-year-olds, who develop left-brain reading systems through formal instruction. They are wrong. Babies and toddlers likely begin as right-brain readers who pick up reading as easily as they pick up three languages if all three languages are spoken by their caregivers between birth and age three. (If one waits until age six, it's not so easy for the child to pick up three languages simultaneously. The baby brain, not the six-year-old brain, has special language and reading capacities.)

* * * * *

J. Richard Gentry PhD is a nationally acclaimed expert on childhood literacy, reading, and spelling development, and the author of Raising Confident Readers: How to Teach Your Child to Read and Write — from Baby to Age 7(Da Capo / Perseus). Find out more at

***** This is a guest post. I was not required to post this, but thought that we all could learn a little from reading this. I have mentioned several times that I hope Broxton picks up a love of reading from me... I will always try and do my best to promote childhood reading! *****


Crazy Days of Summer Photo Challenge - Week Four - Yellow

Linking up again for the Crazy Days of Summer!
This week, the theme is : Yellow!

I tried SO hard to find yellow and sadly, most of my yellow photos are things I have already shared with you...

Have a great day!!!


Disney Keeps Rolling them out...

Cars 2 is NOW OUT!!!!
I really want to take Broxton, but I still do not know about taking a 2 year old to the movies...
Any one have an opinion on this?

And for the adults:
The Help

*** I just wanted to share these with you. I was not required to do so, just showing the love!*** Let me know if you have seen either, or if you are planning on going.!

Aloha Friday - Photo Meme?

Welcome to this week’s edition of Aloha Friday.
In Hawaii, Aloha Friday is the day that we take it easy and look forward to the weekend. So I thought that on Fridays I would take it easy on posting, too.

Therefore, I’ll ask a simple question for you to answer. Nothing that requires a lengthy response.

My question:

Do you participate in any photo Meme's?
(If you do, please let me know! I would love to visit and maybe link up!)

My answer:

I do several different Wordless/Wordful Wednesdays...
I have also started linking up with the Crazy Days of Summer.
Lastly, I just joined up with the Picture Perfect Photo.

Energizer Helps Your Summer - Giveaway

You know how fast people go through batteries?
We go through them faster than most..
I am not sure about your house, but we have many battery controlled items.

My digital camera.
We all know how many pictures I take...
THANK GOODNESS for digital, otherwise, I would be begging for a job at a photo developing store!

The Wii remotes!
When the boys are here, you have no idea how many times they come asking for new batteries!

Broxton's toys.
Hey, if you are a parent, you know what I mean about kids toys and batteries!
Sometimes, I wonder if they work out deal with each other!

Well, what if I told you that Energizer is trying to make it a bit easier for us?
Energizer has Lithium Batteries that are perfect for our travelling needs!
(Just think of your camera and your wireless earphones for road trips!!!)
What makes them so perfect?
Well they are:

§ Lightweight and perform well in extreme temperatures, from -40° F to 140° F (-40° C to 60° C).

§ Energizer® Ultimate Lithium batteries last up to 8x longer** in digital cameras for up to 8X less waste.

§ Energizer® Advanced Lithium batteries last up to 4x longer** in digital cameras, 20 hours longer** in wireless gaming accessories and up to 30% longer** in personal audio devices.

  • ** Vs. Energizer® MAX®. Results vary by device and play and/ or usage patterns.

Want to hear something even cooler?
When you purchase SPECIALLY MARKED Energizer®Ultimate Lithium and a package of Energizer® Advanced Lithium batteries, they will have a code on them.
You just visit the Energizer Facebook Page and enter your codes.
Once you enter 2, you will receive a $10 prepaid Discover Gas rewards Card!

Ready to see for your self?
One lucky winner will win:
Two packs of Energizer Lithium Batteries.

Mandatory Entry:
Let me know, would you choose AA or AAA batteries.
(Please leave email address if not visible in your profile.)

Extra Entries:
(Please leave separate comment for each entry)
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enter to #win energizer #giveaway @jumpinbeans09 ends 7/11

Comment on any REVIEW (from past 60 days) - 5 entries per review
Comment on any NON Giveaway/ Review - 2 entries per comment

Contest will end July 11 at midnight.
Contest for US residents, 18 and older. will select the winner. Winner will have 72 hours to respond to winning email or a new winner will be selected.

FTC Compliant Review Policy: The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation

The Muppets Are Almost Here!!!

I totally love The Muppets!
I can honestly say, I am jealous that Jason Segal and Amy Adams got to film a movie with them!!!
Wow, I can not wait for Thanksgiving...
Are you going to go see it?!
Here is a little sneak peak of what is to come!!!!

***** I was not required to post this, but I wanted to share with you!
Hope you enjoy, Broxton and I did! *****

What's for Dinner? Do you have The Stocked Kitchen? Review

Do I have a book for you to buy.
As in, read this post...
Then, get this book!

I was given the opportunity to review The Stocked Kitchen by Sarah Kallio and Stacey Krastins.
Am I happy I did?

You see, I watched a show one time that talked about if you stocked your kitchen, you could throw together meals when need be.
After that show, I went and bought the things I remembered and it worked...
Until they ran out.
I could not remember what I needed to stock it!

With this book, it is so much more than just a list of items to stock with.
(Although, they do include pull out grocery lists at the back for that purpose!)

Let me give you a run down on this book:
First of all, they give you a few pointers about getting prepared.
Take out all items in your pantry, as you might have some of the items already!
(I did, so I KNOW you will!)
While the pantry is bare... clean it!

Then, restock...
and reorganize!
I liked how they said, "if you haven't opened it or used something in over a year and its not on the list, get rid of it!"
They even include a few pointers on organizing your kitchen!
Hey, if you are going to stock it and clean it, why not be totally prepared and ORGANIZE IT!

The authors are also moms, so they know that a "quick trip to the store" really isn't that quick when you have kids to take with you.
No running in and out!
They give you pointers on how to eliminate all those wasted trips...
How and what to stock up on and a guide "to use by."

A really cool section to me?
The "stocked in a week review."
In this section, they tell you the category of the meal and why they chose it...
Makes perfect sense!
Example :
Monday - Chicken-Rice or Pasta Bake
Why? Monday's you have the time to let something bake, but not the energy to be in the kitchen for a long time preparing after a busy weekend!

They then give you a glossary.
Not just any glossary, but they also include where in the grocery store you can expect to purchase the item they are discussing...
As well as the best place to store it!
(I needed that!)
Something I learned in the glossary:
If a recipe calls for fish sauce (have never heard of it, so I know for sure that we do not have it!)
You can substitute half Worcestershire Sauce and half soy sauce!
Wow, never would have known!!!

They include tons of great recipes that seem easy enough that I can figure it out.
What did not help me?
They amazingly beautiful pictures they included!
It made me want to eat everything right then!!!!
(Settled for a glass of water!)

From appetizers to marinades, breakfast or dessert...
They have a little of everything in here!

Best of all, if you purchase everything on their stocked grocery list...
You can make them!!!

I think this would be a great gift...
For newlyweds, kids getting their first apartment, or a bachelor you know!
As well as people like me... (and you know you want one too!)

Go ahead and follow them on facebook and twitter...
They share some great looking recipes on their twitter!!!

FTC Compliant Review Policy: The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.

Let's get a bit personal... If you don't mind

We live in an apartment.
As you know, we want to get a house one day...
But houses are crazy here...
(Or maybe everywhere, I just do not know)

Anyways, when looking at houses...
We try and picture furniture in there, right?
Obviously, we have our room...
Then, we need room for the boys...
Maybe a spare room?
Well, with the houses that we have seen...
WHOA, the rooms are so small!

I mean, with some of the rooms, you barely had enough room for a children's bed!
That leads me to this...
How is your layout for your kids room?
I want to get bunk beds for the boys, I figure that would be the easiest way to give MORE room with less space.

I found one that I thought was pretty neat:
It is a bunk bed, but you can take them apart and it is 2 twin beds!
We actually had this type of beds in my dorm room!
I walked in and my roommate had them bunked ready to go, I wanted the bottom.
We did that for a bit, then ended up going to the two by themselves.
I think we ended up going back to bunks...
But, it was pretty cool to have the option to change it as our moods did!
I also liked the bed that is in a category called cabin beds.
(I had never heard of this terminology, but they are pretty smart!)
It is a bed, that is lifted, like a loft...
Underneath, it actually has drawers and bookshelves!
Talk about a great idea!
Once again, less room!
I like this concept, as you can basically fit more stuff together to allow more room for playing!

So, tell me, what do you do for your kids rooms?
Do you just have a single bed?
Or bunk beds?
Or even matching twin beds?

There are so many options, that you can pretty much figure it out to accommodate your room size, as well as the style you want to go for!
I mean, there is so much additional information available these days, all you have to look around!

***** This post is brought to you by Bedstar. All comments and opinions are 100 % mine.*****

Summer Time is Grilling Time!

What do you think of when you think of Summer Time?
I think of Pools and Grilling!
This is my dad, "teaching" my cousin "the proper grilling techniques."

My dad LOVES to grill!
He is the "grill master!"
Ha ha!!!
I do not know what kind of grill he has now, but I do know that it took him over a year of studying them before he would settle on one!

With summer officially here, isn't it time to start looking?
Wouldn't you hate to plan an amazing cookout, only to discover that you did not have an awesome grill?
Weber Grills seem to have grills of every shape and size!
You can narrow down your search to charcoal, electric, natural gas or propane.

Now, I do not know much about grills...
But I can tell you that the weber genesis grills look like they have the whole kitchen right there!
You get stainless steel burners and even grill hooks on it!

Now, the genesis e310 is a pretty fancy grill in my opinion!
If I was going to buy my dad a grill, which I am not, but just saying...
I would totally get his opinion on this!
Besides the burners and all, you have "work space" and a center mounted thermometer!

I guess if you are serious about grilling, this is the ticket!
I once had a grill...
It was a little Jim Beam Grill I got from work...
It was meant for camping...
What happened to it?
It rained and got blown away!

You know, apartment living, we aren't allowed to have grills...
So, we will not own one for the time being...
One day...
One day...
Just remember with these fancy weber grills, you might want to invest in a nice grill cover!
So, the question is...
When we DO own a grill, is our grill cover going to be UGA (for me) or LSU (for Marc)...
That is the million dollar question!


Looking for a kid coozie? Try Kidzikoo! Review

You know how adults have coozies?
Come on...
You know what I am talking about!
I gave coozies out at my wedding!
Hey, lots of people do that these days, I don't think my parents loved the idea, but we did!

Now, kids have Kidzikoos!!!!
Lindsay is the creator of them and I think they are amazing!
Lindsay not only came up with a great product...
I mean, if we use them for our drinks, why would they NOT be great for kids?
Let me give more insight:
They keep your drinks cold (or hot, depending on what you are drinking)
They help distinguish your little one's bottle/sippy cup from others.
They absorb moisture, so no wet water rings on the furniture!
Now, we never used glass bottles, but it says that it "protects glass bottles."

As soon as we opened it, Broxton immediately wanted to put it on his cup!
I was excited to see which one we got, as I was having a hard time picking the print I liked best!
We received the Landon print and Broxton just LOVES it!!!
The great thing is that you can move it from cup to cup...
and it is machine washable!
I love that they grip the cup enough that he can not yank it off, but it is also easy enough that I can pinch the bottom and pull it off when I need to!

I think they are just too cute!
Before all is said and done, I just might have to order one for me!
For only $6.99, I think it is a great deal!
I just do not know if Broxton would like me having a kidzikoo and trying to be cool like him!
If you head over to the Kidzikoo site, you can enter to win a kidzikoo of your choice!
Just remember, the contest ends June 30th, so head over now!!!

Also, stay up to date with any new kidzikoo information by following on twitter!!

FTC Compliant Review Policy: The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.

Do you shop online or in actual stores?

Normally, I just grab something and go.
I hate shopping...
If you were to look at my wardrobe, you would see that style and I do not talk that often.

To be quite honest...
As far as style goes, I normally look online at the different womens clothes sites to see what is popular.
I would say that I watched celebrity dressings, but I do not think so, I mean...
Yeah, I would like to be stylish...
But, I am not spending $2,000 on a shirt.
A shirt? Really?! Really!

I really do not know the last time I went shopping.
It gets kinda hard to go once you become a mom.
Think about it, you have so much going on.
You try to look at what is popular.
You need to get into a dressing room to try it on.
You need to entertain your child while doing so.
Like they really want to spend the day watching mommy try on different outfits..
Then there are the accessories.
You need your shoes, your jewelry and your purse.
Wow, so much goes into that one outfit.
By the time I have even got that far along, I am completely OVER it!

I would rather just grab something and go.
Or easier than that...
Just buy online!
With so many great sites, you can easily find something for anyone in your family online these days...
You can shop for clothing, medicine, you name it...
You can find it online!

I like the convenience of looking from home and then trying to figure out the whole outfit.
Think about it, you watch some show and want to create that look for less...
It is 2:00 A.M.
Are you really going to get up, get dressed and find a store then?
But, online, you can!!!

You can also pick up a few things for other family members, when you have the option to price compare to get the best online deals!!!
This would totally be cute on the high school crowd!
Think of all the texters you know!
I did have to laugh though...
I was looking online at a few sites when I saw these:
Ballerina Slippers

Why did I laugh?
Well, back in day, when I worked in the bar...
One of my dear friends was getting ready to go out to celebrate her birthday...
She stopped by the bar to get started...
and when she went to get something out of her purse, shoes like that fell out!
I asked what she was doing and she had to explain...
She was going dancing that night and she wanted to have other shoes to slip into to rest and give her feet a break!
Little to say, she ended up DANCING in them all night, as she just did not have the desire to change out of her comfort shoes!!!!

So, do you choose comfort over fashion?
Rather, are you fashionably comfortable or comfortably fashionable?
Ha! I do not know the difference, but if you know me..
Comfort always wins!!!

***** This post is is brought to you by Very. All comments and opinions are 100 % mine. *****

Mealtime - Book Review

I have reviewed for Free Spirit Publishing before and I absolutely LOVE all the books that they have to offer!
I was given the chance to review the newest book from their Toddler Tools Series.

The newest book is called, Mealtime, and in it you learn all about how important mealtime is!
With Mealtime, Broxton and I have been discussing why we eat our fruits and veggies...
To grow up strong and healthy!
Also, we discuss the importance of table manners.
From washing our hands before we eat, to trying new things..
Just one bite!
We also learn to use Please and Thank You...
As well as using your napkin!

We try to teach Broxton manners as it is, but with reading this...
We get to discuss it more..
Including looking at pictures and seeing other kids doing the same thing!

As with the other books in the Toddler Tools Series, the illustration is adorable, yet simple... With easy to read fonts and colorful words!
I also love that they are the board books.
Sturdy enough for every day reading!!!!

At the end of the book, they include 8 tips for pleasant Mealtimes with a Toddler...
I have added this for you to read:

Know your goals. Mealtime is an opportunity to teach young children two major life skills: nutrition and table manners. Both skills take time and practice. The table is a busy place, and it’s not always possible to focus on both skill sets at once. It’s more important for your child to grow and be healthy—so put the greater emphasis on eating nutritious foods. Keep the message simple and repeat it often: “We eat our fruits and veggies to grow up strong and healthy.”
Set some rules. When your child is young, teach the “Always try one bite” rule. Encourage your child to take at least one bite of an unfamiliar or unwanted food, and then leave it at that. If your child doesn’t like the food, don’t force the issue. And don’t give up either—the very next time you get your child to try a bite of that same food, he might like it!
Have reasonable expectations. Long family dinners with great food and conversation can be wonderful—but not always achievable. Making meals simple, kid-friendly, and healthy is plenty. As your child grows, mealtime will become a bit more manageable. Accept that, for now, chaos comes with the territory.
Get your child involved in meal prep. Toddlers are naturally curious and full of energy. As you make a meal, let your child help with simple tasks—tearing lettuce for the salad or putting a spoon by each plate. Then make a big deal about how your child helped cook and set the table.
Practice praising your child. Did she taste a new food? Or remember to use a napkin? Or get through a whole meal without spilling her drink? Notice each small triumph and remember to say, “Good job.”
Create rituals and routines. Have children wash their hands before coming to the table. You can also use mealtime to teach simple manners like “Please,” “Thank you,” and “May I be excused?” Depending on what works for you, you might signal that mealtime is a special time by lighting a candle, saying grace, or briefly holding hands at the table. You might even encourage your child to “Kiss the cook.”
Give your child some undivided attention. One way to get toddlers to enjoy meals and sit still for an extended period of time is to give them your full attention. Ask them questions. Listen intently to their answers. When you make the table a nurturing place, your child will come to appreciate mealtime as a special time together.
Keep it short. Toddlers tend to eat and run—literally. At this age, they’re wiggly and active and may not be able to sit at the table for long. Instead of making your child stay until everyone has finished, let him get up and play so the rest of you can linger. Just make sure he clears his plate first.

If you have not heard of Free Spirit Publishing, I would totally suggest you check them out!!!
I plan on adding more of the Toddler Tool Series Books to our library!

FTC Compliant Review Policy: The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.


W/W - Broxton likes to "Hut"

Warning, sort of long post, but so worth the read!!!!

Broxton LOVES football!
I think it is a great thing, being that we are all huge football fans!
My hometown has an arena football team, the Albany Panthers.
Whenever they are playing and we are visiting my parents, we try to go to the game.
The great thing about it, after the game is over...
They allow the fans on the field to meet the players.
This is where Broxton gets really, REALLY, R.E.A.L.L.Y. excited.
The first few games, he just kind of looked around not sure what was going on.
Then, he got it!

He would high five them.
He loved it.
THEN, it happened!
He was standing there and one of the players bent down to talk to him...
Broxton said "HUT"
The player looked at me and I said, he wants to "Hut!"
So, he squatted down, Broxton "Hutted" and then "tackled" the player.
He fell over all dramatically and it totally made Broxton's night!

From that point on, he was always wanting to "hut!"
The next game, he hutted a few more...
One guy thought he said "hug" so he hugged him and then Broxton was like, "No, HUT!"
Then he got it!
He bent down and hutted.
All the other fans standing around LOVE that the players (who do not really get paid that much, that I know of) take the time to "hut" with a 2 year old!!!

The last game of the year, Broxton was so excited!
We took a football for them to sign.
He hutted, he high fived!
He got a few autographs...
He was able to get pictures with some of them, but most of all...
He got to have an amazing time with a great group of guys!

Here are a few pictures to share:
Here is Broxton with our mascot, Prowler!
With the cheerleaders! They were all like, "We LOVE him!"
Broxton with one of the players after they "hutted!"
With the very first player to ever "hut" him.
Needless to say, we normally tried to find him after each game!
The Panthers are in the playoffs this weekend.
They play Columbus, who is the ONLY team to beat us this year...
(They beat us twice)
Please root for my hometown! LoL
You can even like them on facebook and leave a good luck message if you want!!!!

Ebeanstalk - Review

I have discussed Ebeanstalk before.
I love how the site makes it so easy for anyone and everyone to take a look around and see what all they have to offer!
I also love that if you are one that does not have children, they can sort of help guide you.
I remember when friends would invite me to their kids parties..
I would have NO CLUE what to get them..
I mean, yeah... they are turning 3, but what are three year old gifts?
With Ebeanstalk, you just search, Toys for a 3 YR old and it will help you out!!!
I know that we have a friend that has a little boy that just turned one and another turning 4 or 5, isn't it horrible that I do not remember?
Where does the time go?
Well, I am all about buying books and toys and everything else, but I really think that I might have to go with books this time, as he has every toy imaginable!
I was looking at Books on Eric Carle.
You know, the Hungry Caterpillar Book?
Well, he has more than just that one!
He has several that I have never even heard of!

Either way, if you are looking to make a wish list of great items for your child...
Birthday, Christmas, you name it...
Ebeanstalk will let you do that!

Also, don't forget the thing that I loved most in my original post...
You can purchase a Grow and Learn Series gift...
With this, every 3 months, a new age appropriate toy will arrive for the selected recipient!!!
How cool?!

I am just having a hard time trying to narrow down my options!

FTC Compliant Review Policy: The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.

UnBurn - For Real?

As I have said time and time again...
I burn easily!
(Well, unless I remember to wear sunscreen!)

How about this...
I forgot to take it with us when we went to the pool a couple weeks ago.
We did not stay that long, so I was not worried.
I did not get burnt that much, but I could feel a little heat.

I remembered that we received "UN-BURN" for review, so I asked Marc to put some on my back.
He opened it up and I tell you, it was weird...
It felt like he was pouring a liquid chalk on me.
HOLD ON, don't let me lose you yet!
I know that sounds so weird!
He poured it on and rubbed it in.
I felt like it would be a thick white liquid...
He rubbed it in and within a few minutes, the heat was gone.
Sort of like how you put ashes on a fire to put it out?
Maybe that was where my chalk though came from...
I do not know!

I do know that I was a bit skeptical.
Maybe I was not really that burnt, as nothing normally works that fast!
So, I purposely went out to the pool with no sunscreen.
I know, call me stupid now...
Well, I am glad that the Un-Burn worked or I would have really been mad at myself!

Marc came home from work the other day...
Red as fire!
Now, normally he gets red and then immediately tans...
He NEVER complains about the sun.

He told me that he had to "peel the shirt off" as it was stuck to the burn!
Are you in pain yet?
I was!
I grabbed the Un-Burn...
I wanted to see how he felt!
I poured it on him...
Imagine my surprise, it was a somewhat clear liquid.
Maybe a little cloudy looking, but nothing like what I expected!
I rubbed it in and within a few minutes, he was feeling much better!
He even ASKED me to put more on him before we went to bed!

The next day, we applied sunscreen before he left for work...
and when he returned home from work, he asked me to apply more Un-Burn!
Seems as though I am not the only one sold on this!!!

Bottom line...
If you are heading to the beach, the pool or just plan on being outside any at all this summer...
Keep Un-Burn stocked and ready for those miserable days when you get a little too much sun!

Utilizing a vast knowledge of emergency burn care, Water-Jel has formulated UnBurn for the specific treatment of sunburns. This vitamin E-enriched, water-based gel with 2.5% Lidocaine works quickly to relieve the pain of sunburn. UnBurn immediately cools and soothes the skin while its moisture-rich, Vitamin E formula with Aloe helps prevent peeling. Shelf life: 3 years from date of manufacture.

FTC Compliant Review Policy: The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.


What is an AWESOME birthday gift for a kid? WaterBlocks Review

I saw an ad online that mentioned Water Blocks.
Of course, I had to know what that was!
So, I went on over to take a look.
They are just one of the coolest toys that I think I have ever seen!

Have you heard of Just-Think-Toys?
Do you have Water Blocks?!
We now do!
Broxton LOVES to get a bath.
He loves water of any sort...
(If you did not know that, you can always look at my pictures of him in the pool, I love them!)
I just knew that if he were to have Water Blocks, that he would just have that much more fun!

They arrived and Broxton was so excited!
We had to get them out and play with them in the living room.

We received the Super Set that Broxton just loves!
The Super Set comes with 20 pieces which also includes a small ball.
With the Super Set, you can build a little track for the ball to race down!
So fun and yes, we have done this many many times!!!!
Just look at the excitement on his face watching the ball!

We also received the Seaport Set.
Broxton loves it because it comes with a helicopter and a sea plane!
The cool thing about this is that the sets all allow for you to add to them!
So, just because they came as two different sets, we still get to play with them all together!!!

So, what makes Water Blocks so cool to us?
You can play with them in the water!
They are made out of this material that I have no clue what it is..
It is not plastic, it is not a sponge...
It is just the water block!
They float, so you can build little towns in the tub!
Also, they somewhat stick together!
Something about the water, it holds them together...
and you can also put them on the sides of the tub!

The first time we put them in the tub (which was right after I told Broxton they were bath toys the day he opened them) Broxton immediately said, "Too many!"
I showed him how he could stick them to the wall.
Totally cool!!!
Another great thing about it?
As soon as he is done getting his bath, we dry them all off and then bring them back to the living room to play even more!

I really think that this would be an amazing gift to give any kid for their Birthday Present or Christmas Present!
Talk about loads of bathtime fun!
Also, this isn't an item that they will be like,
"Oh, I already have one!"
They can just add to their collection!

We have discussed taking our blocks to the pool!
Now, if we had a kiddie pool or even our own pool at home, I would be all over it!
But, being as we are in an apartment...
That would just mean too much for me to keep up with having several kids out there as well!
Maybe one day, but not just yet!

So, if you want to be the cool parent giving awesome toys...
Go ahead and order a couple sets today!
The kids will thank you for it!!!!

FTC Compliant Review Policy: The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.

Loving Lampposts Review: Not Just for Those With Autistic Children

As autism has exploded into the public consciousness over the last 20 years, two opposing questions have been asked about the condition fueling the debate: is it a devastating sickness to be cured or is it a variation of the human brain – just a different way to be human? LOVING LAMPPOSTS: LIVING AUTISTIC takes a look at two movements: the “recovery movement,” which views autism as a tragic epidemic brought on by environmental toxins, and the “neurodiversity movement,” which argues that autism should be accepted and that autistic people should be supported. After his son’s diagnosis, filmmaker Todd Drezner visits the front lines of the autism wars to learn more about the debate and provide information about a condition that is still difficult to comprehend.

I was sent information on a DVD that was being released just in time for Autism Awareness Month.
(It was April, but I really think that more needs to be done to bring more attention to Autism all the time.)
I thought about it and although I wanted to share it with you, my readers...
I wanted to share in the best way possible.
I contacted a friend of mine, Amanda, who has an Autistic child.
I wanted to see if she would like to watch it and in turn tell me her thoughts..
She of course said "yes" as she is always trying to learn more about it...
So, that being said, the DVD was on its way!

Fast forward a few weeks and this is what I see on her facebook wall:
Watching 'Loving Lampposts' a must see for parents of autistic children.
Let me correct that, it is a must see for anyone who knows anyone with autism...

Then, I received the email with her thoughts on the DVD:

Loving Lampposts, Living Autistic:

After I could put away my little box of tissues, I sat back and smiled at the bittersweet feeling I had about this film. My son is living autistic, so is my entire family. He was diagnosed at the age of three, and he is about to turn six. This has been our growing philosophy in regards to our sons autism and it took a long time to come to terms with him, how he is, and to rid our family of the hate we all had for autism. We hated autism for a long time for “taking away” our son, then we despaired, how will he function in a world that is judgmental and cruel, then we decided that he is who he is. Take him, love him, or leave him. He is Brody.

He is the sweetest, most loving little child I have ever had the pleasure to spend time with and love. He could teach the world a thing or two about acceptance. He has no preconceived notions about anyone or anything. There is no back and forth, wishy-washy, or backhanded anything with Brody. It is all or nothing, and sometimes I am jealous of him. He gets speech therapy three times a week and our hope is that one day he will be able to talk to us. Our goals and dreams for Brody change daily, weekly, monthly. We call them Brody steps and are thrilled when he takes one. This film is about acceptance, coming to terms with autism and that it is not something that needs to be cured, but understood.

Every parent of an autistic child yearns for that magic cure all. That one concoction that will take away the autism, makes everything right, and make their child “normal.” This film touches on the different medical and not so medical things that desperate parents try on their children in the hopes that it will make them all better. This movement is called the “recovery movement,” but there is no magic serum, no magic pill that is a cure all. Parents spend hundreds of thousands of dollars a year on treatments that are not medically tested or proven in the hopes of taking away the autism. We went through this for a time as well. Although we did not nor could we try something on our son that was not proven as safe, we researched everything, had tests done for allergies and heavy metal toxins. Nothing… all this information out there as to what may cause autism and our son had none of those things going on with him. So, medically there was nothing to “fix” with him. That is when we changed our outlook on autism.

The other movement, “neurodiversity movement,” believes that autism is just another way to be, another way of thinking and processing information. This movement is about the support, the awareness, and the acceptance of autistic people. To date, one out of every 110 children are affected by autism spectrum disorders and the numbers are growing. These children, who all too quickly become adults, need support and therapies to function in a society that is not made for them. Above all though, they need love, encouragement, and acceptance and so do the families.

Autism is not pretty, it can be heart wrenching, dirty, messy, nasty, neat, orderly, and obsessive, oh, I could go on and on. Nevertheless, autism can also be beautiful… maybe we all need to stop for a moment and try to see the world through the eyes of an autistic child. Maybe, just maybe if we all stopped for just a second, we could learn a little something about the world. I know I have learned more from my son, my little 6 year old, than I ever could from a book. I believe that is what this film was all about, finding acceptance.

Now that she has shared that, I really think that I want to see it.
I hate to say it, but I really do not know much about Autism.
But, like I told her...
God knew she was strong enough to deal with all that would be thrown her way.
I am happy that she is my friend...
I know that she is a wonderful mother.
I am also lucky that she wanted to learn more and by doing so, was able to share this review with us.
Maybe if everyone were to watch this, not only would there be more knowledge from those that are unfamiliar, but as Amanda said, more acceptance.

FTC Compliant Review Policy: The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.


Outside is Messy Time for us!!!

I warned you of the mess to come in my post yesterday...

Okay, this too!!!


Updated: Emeril Answers YOUR Questions!!!!

***** Update: Due to Facebook Rules and Regulations, they are no longer hosting a giveaway. Sorry for that! Still, head on over and ask Emeril any questions you are just dying to know the answer to!!! Should be a great time!!!! *****

When I hear the name, Emeril...
I think of my dad!
My dad LOVES to grill...
and loves watching Emeril!

I honestly had no clue that my dad even watched cooking television, until he mentioned Emeril!
Then, I saw how much he enjoyed him!
I guess the enthusiasm Emeril shows is how my dad feels...
I don't know!

Either way, I received an email talking about Emeril and his facebook page...
I wanted to share with you, just in case any of you enjoy Emeril as much as my dad!

Wednesday, June 29th...
Log on to Emeril's facebook page.
From 3:00 to 4:00 EST, he will be answering all your questions... LIVE!


Who: YOU
What: Chatting it up with Emeril... LIVE
When: Wednesday, June 29 from 3:00 - 4:00 EST
Why: You know you want to :)

I was not required to post this, just thought you might want to have a heads up and participate!
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