Monday, September 3, 2018

Legato Counting/Sorting Bears and GIVEAWAY!

I grew up using these colorful rainbow counting bears and wanted to get some for my son. Some of the most popular sources of these counting bears is from Learning Resources and and Skoolzy. Legato's bears is the second most popular listing on Amazon and this is my favorite choice if you are only getting one set. The bears on Legato's set is exactly the same as the bears in the Skoolzy set and they are slightly different than the set from Learning Resources (the bears are sitting instead of standing).

One of the main factors I like this set the most is that it comes in a nice carrying case! When you have kids, you accumulate a lot of stuff. So when said stuff comes neatly packaged and can be stored in a container - you want to get this version of whatever the stuff is!

The green tongs pictured above is what sold me. I am an Occupational Therapist so I have a background that helps inform my decisions on what toys I want for my kid. One of them is having different kinds of tongs. The fact that this set comes with tongs and is not priced significantly higher than its competitor (at the time of posting the price difference is $0.98) made this set stand out. You can use the tongs with picking up these bears and sorting them into cups, BUT you can use these tongs for all sorts of other activities. I mean, just having the container sold me in and of itself...but the tongs? It was the cherry on top.

These bears have a nice weight to them and they are solid - plastic through and through! These bears are just over an inch tall so supervision is required if your kid is mouthing - these are definitely a choking hazard. They are non-toxic and have been tested by a third party lab to ensure safety.

When you buy the set of bears, you will be emailed an activity book (ebook) that you can print out and use as a learning tool. These bears are great for STEM learning and can be used in open ended play. The uses for these bears are endless - and that was why this was a must-have item for my son!

The activity book can also be purchased separately on Amazon. The sheets are cover stock paper (thick) and have a nice slick substantial feel to them. The color print is quite nice, but, in all honestly I do feel that for almost $14, they are a bit expensive.

Legato was kind enough to give us a full set, bears and activity sheets, to our dedicated readers! Please comment below with your name, email, and how you'll use these rainbow bears with your little one by September 30, 2018 and you will be entered into our raffle. We will select the winner on October 1st, and they will be contacted via email!

Buy your set here!

Disclosure: This complimentary item was provided for review purposes. As always, all opinions are my own and no compensation was received. This post contains affiliate links.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Cloversac Emma 28 purse organizer for Longchamp Le Pliage

If you are looking for a purse organizer and haven’t heard of CloverSac then you have got to look them up because they are one of the leading companies that specialize in purse organizer inserts, base shapers, dust bag, rain cover and other accessories for popular designer handbags. Armed with a purse organizer insert by CloverSac, you will be able to keep your handbag neat and organized with both your personal stuff and all your baby/toddler crap stuff! You will actually be able to find that pacifier or your phone that won't stop ringing! This post is photo heavy and will show all the features of Cloversac's Emma 28 inside my large Longchamp Le Pliage (the shopper).

The organizer comes shipped as pictured above - collapsed. You just push and pull it open and you get what is pictured below!

You can't see this, but in the mesh panel toward the top of the picture, you have 3 pieces of flexible plastic that is pictured below. It is tucked in there for shipping and you just remove it to insert into premade pockets of the organizer to give it structure and stability to stand upright in your bag.

Pictured above are the flexible plastic pieces that insert into pre-made pockets in the organizer. These are key for a supportive and stable organizer that won't collapse onto itself (which is really annoying when you are fishing for things in your overloaded bag).

Pictured above are the two of the three slots you insert your plastic pieces.  The top is actually the bottom of the organizer (confusing, right?) and the velcro opening is one of the two sides. The velcro helps hold the plastic piece in there without falling down, or out. Great engineering!

Pictured above is the bottom plastic piece being inserted into the organizer.

Pictured above is one of the side plastic pieces being inserted into the organizer.

Look how much structure the plastic supports give the organizer!! It stands upright and is very sturdy while being lightweight at the same time. A dream combination when you don't want to lug around a 20lb bag on your shoulders. Pictured above, you can see one side of the interior that features a panel that gives you 3 pockets - one large one that spans the entire length of the organizer, one medium and one small one in the front. Also, take note that one of three of the exterior pockets is also shown in this photo that also spans the entire length of the organizer.

Here is view of the opposite exterior side of the organizer that features two of the three exterior pockets. Keep note that they are not gusseted pockets so you can't stick a ton of stuff in it. For reference, it does fit one diaper in each exterior pocket!

Opposite the mesh interior pockets, there are 3 gusseted pockets that expand to fit a something with more...girth (I tried to think of a different word but this ended up being the most appropriate description!!). Please note, I haven't attached the middle section yet! You'll notice the female metal snaps in the interior on the far right side of the organizer - that is where I attach the optional 4 section middle divider that comes with the bag shown below.

You just snap this in. There is actually a wrong way to attach these. Pictured above is the wrong way to attach it. It's hard to tell but there isn't a lot of length following the last button. This creates a gap between the bottom of this attachment and the bottom of the organizer. You'll know you installed it incorrectly when it is hovering in the air after you attach this piece. This is not how it was designed to be. All you do is flip it around and attach it! When it is attached correctly, there is no gap between the middle piece and the bottom of the organizer. This middle piece is completely optional and you can take it out if you don't want to use it. 

This is the organizer in my large Longchamp Le Pliage. You'll notice that there is a gap at the top and that this organizer does not fit perfectly in the bottom of the bag. It's not totally custom to this bag but that wasn't a huge deal to be because I plan to either stuff a blanket/swaddle in that opening, diapers, or wipes in that gap. The options are endless when you have kids. For this picture, I stuffed my Lesportsac bag in the gap. There is also some room on the side of the bag that allows you to stuff a water bottle, or another kid item. It would be nice to have the organize fit exactly though.

Look at this beautiful organization!! I feel on top of the world when my things are organized and not just loosely jumbled in the dark hole that is my purse. I can actually find my pens!!!

Having this organizer keeps your bag from sagging, too! You don't need a base shaper if you are already using a purse organizer because it helps keep the base from sagging with the flexible bottom support. If you are using a different type of purse organizer without much structure or support on the bottom of the organizer, then you will need to consider using a base shaper so your bag doesn't sag - unless you like the saggy look.

The organizer comes in three colors: red, beige and black. I personally chose the red because the beige would show dirty quickly and the black would blend in and make it visually more difficult to see the different slots easily in a low light area known as the black hole of your purse.

The Emma 28 measures 11”L x 6”H x 5” and is the second of the largest organizers Cloversac offers. I was told by Cloversac that the Grand 35 (the largest organizer they currently carry at the time of posting) does not fit into the large Le Pliage and will be discontinued and be replaced with the Emma 36. I don't have details of the Emma 36, but I hope it does address some of the sizing and fit shortcomings of the Emma 28 for the large Le Pliage. But still, at the price point Cloversac offers their purse organizer and the quality of the organizer, it is a great organizer to have. Another update I hope to see in its future is for the organizer to be a tad taller - not too much taller but just a few inches to accommodate items that are taller. I highly recommend this organizer for the price, solid construction, and how much joy it brings to the life of a new mom!! When everything else is in disarray, at least you can count on your bag to be organized!

Lastly, according to their website, this organizer is made to fit a variety of handbags.
This bag organizer has been widely used to fit into many popular handbags such as LV Speedy 30, LV Neverfull MM, Hermes Birkin 35, Garden Party 36cm Tote,Garden Party Tote, Mulbery Regular sized Del Rey, Regular sized, Bayswater, Celine mini luggage, large trapeze, medium luggage type,phantom large, phantom medium, Goyard St louis GM tote, Longchamp Le Pliage Large Shoulder Bag Black (1899 089 001) and many more.
Purchase your purse organizer here!

Disclosure: This complimentary item was provided for review purposes. As always, all opinions are my own and no compensation was received. This post contains affiliate links.

Sunday, October 22, 2017

TRULite Premium Smooth Mattress Protector

We have used CoopHomeGood's King mattress protector for some time now and were unhappy with it due to fit and it moving around. It is a highly reviewed and pricey mattress protector so we were really disappointed with it. We ended up finding TruLite Home and found their mattress protectors to be superior and at a lower cost!

TRULite began in a mattress store and has evolved into a company that sells mattress covers and other protection for mattresses themselves. The mattress cover we are reviewing is their Premium Smooth Mattress Protector in King.

The mattress protector is a polyester blend and contains no phthalates, vinyl, PVC, or other irritants. The soft side isn't slippery against our sheets and the mattress cover fits very snug on our Eastern King (which is just known as a King sized mattress).

The opposite / underside is waterproof. It doesn't feel plastic-y when it's on the bed or make any noises when we are sleeping on it. We have a memory foam mattress pad and this doesn't add or trap extra heat when sleeping.

This mattress cover didn't have any smells upon opening and I was able to launder it before using it. It is machine washable (I washed in cold) and I dried it on low setting. You should always dry waterproof covers on the low setting to protect the waterproof lining. I was afraid these wouldn't fit snug because it accommodates very deep pockets like the one we previously had but this set was perfect. It doesn't slide anywhere, make any crinkly noises, or make us sleep hot. We absolutely love and recommend this affordable mattress cover!!

Buy your mattress protector here!

Disclosure: This complimentary item was provided for review purposes. As always, all opinions are my own and no compensation was received. This post contains affiliate links.

BabyBubz Multi-purpose Stroller Hooks and Giveaway!

Babybubz is a small family company that was started up by Mark and Lisa Burrows. They were in search of the best baby products for their own children and amidst their research, trial and use of many infant and children products they found what really works and what didn't and decided to come up with their own line of products they loved. One of which we were given the opportunity to review: Multi-purpose stroller hooks.

Babybubz stroller hooks are made of plastic and are able to hook 6 lbs on each hook. When using both hooks, you can hook up to 12 lbs on the hooks without fear or them breaking. If you are putting this on the back of a stroller, you won't want to put more weight than that for the safety of your precious cargo being tipped backwards.

These hooks swivel around 360 degrees and allows for you to manipulate it in any direction you need it to be in.

They strap on your stroller with strong Velcro straps. I wasn't sure how secure this would be, but it is actually very snug and secure on our stroller now. It fits very tightly around the handle bars and shows no sign or risks of it coming loose.

I use the stroller hooks completely vertical. Meaning, I wouldn't put it off to the sides of the stroller and hook my purse on that way. The reason being that I don't want to put tension on the hook where it wasn't meant to have the tension (sideways or being torqued).

I can choose to put my purse on one of the hooks here, or I could move the hooks closer together and put both straps on the books to distribute the weight of my bag between two hooks. Here the hooks are facing outwards.

Another option I also like is to face the hooks inwards and put one strap on each hook. This allows my bag to be a bit open and easily accessible. I wouldn't ever leave my purse unattended on the stroller so I like this position best to easily put these in and get things out when I'm out and about shopping or just walking around.

I LOVE how versatile these hooks are and how they allow me to hang my bags in different positions. I also love how I don't need to use two hands to put the straps into the hook as some of the clip hooks require. Though, you can technically learn to put your bags on it one handed in one of the clip hooks as well (such as The Mommy Hook reviewed here).  I am partial to this set of hooks than a large carabiner clip because I don't always want to have my bags hanging by the handles. Our official diaper bag have nice hooks built on the side and the carabiner clips wouldn't utilize them, but these would! I could easily slip the hooks or loops on my diaper bag onto these clips without having to use the tie clip hooks on the diaper bag which requires much more effort and time to put on and take off. You just place the diaper bag hooks or loops on the BabyBubz hooks in a few seconds and you are ready to go!

BabyBubz was kind enough to provide us two sets of hooks to raffle off to our readers! To enter the raffle, please comment with your email address and why you feel these are a better fit for your lifestyle than other hooks on the market! The raffle window will close on November 30, 2017. I will put all the emails into a hat and draw and random. I will contact the 2 winners via email so be sure to enter in a valid email!

Buy your stroller hooks here!

Disclosure: This complimentary item was provided for review purposes. As always, all opinions are my own and no compensation was received. This post contains affiliate links.

Snuggle Bambino

While looking for a pregnancy pillow, I was searching for one that wouldn't take up a ton of space on our bed like the popular snoogle - which I tried and didn't love because it made my neck sore and was not ergonomic for my cervical and thoracic alignment.

Being late in pregnancy, I was looking for support for my bump and also a crutch to help me sleep on my side, or at least if I ended up rolling on my back, that I was still at an angle. I wanted to be sure the baby wasn't laying on my descending aorta and decreasing my blood supply - thereby, decreasing blood supply going to baby resulting in low oxygen. 

This pillow does support my belly adequately during sleep and it does also help keep me on my side; however, I felt that it could have been softer. It is a bit too firm and the smaller size that makes it travel friendly made it uncomfortable when I found myself turning on my back during the night since it did wake me up. There are two sides of support, one being softer and one being firmer, but when used on my back, they felt similar to me.

I also tried the wedge between my legs and that was actually great support because it was firm. The pillow I was using was a bit too soft and flat so it did not help align my spine and posture while side lying in bed.

The wedge is very travel friendly and light. It's also very unobtrusive to use in bed. It measures approximately 13" x 15" x 5" and weighs 1.5 lbs. It is also very convenient that the cover comes off for a wash. There wedge comes with a carrying case but it's small and doesn't actually fit the pillow and I wouldn't store the wedge cover in there and leave the memory foam uncovered so I felt that was an unnecessary accessory to include.

Overall I found it was best to use as knee support and belly support. I also like to use it behind my back when I am sitting on the couch but to keep it behind me to support me from laying on my back was unsuccessful. 

Buy your pregnancy wedge here!

Disclosure: This complimentary item was provided for review purposes. As always, all opinions are my own and no compensation was received. This post contains affiliate links.

SomniLight Dimmable Nursery Lamp and Red LED Night Light

With a baby coming in just a week or two, we were on the lookout for a good red night light for our nursery after reading about blue light emission and how it can alter sleep cycles. That is definitely not what we want with a newborn that we aim to have sleep peacefully through the night (laughable as a newborn, I know). We wanted to be prepared! We stumbled across SomniLight in our research for red LED night lights and it also led us to discovering their dimmable nursery lamp in an Amber color as well. We will be reviewing both of these products in this post.

SomniLight was founded by Jordan and Kelly Burr in 2014.  In their research, they found how blue light emissions negatively affect their circadian rhythm and that was what led to their developing a line of products that effective address this issue. Their product line offers more than the two products we are reviewing here and their full line can be found here.

First up for review is SomniLight's red LED night light. It comes in a two pack and are perfect to use in the bathroom, hallways, bedrooms, or in a nursery. We purchased this specifically for the nursery and use one in there, but also use one out in the living room and have really liked it there. Originally we used it in our bathroom, but it was always on due to the nightlight having a dawn/dusk sensor that automatically shuts off when there is any ambient light and then turns on when there isn't. Since there's normally no light in the bathroom, this resulted to the nightlight always being on. So we ended up using it in the living room and it functions perfectly there!

The reason we wanted these lights for the nursery was because we've learned from our own research the effect of blue light emission from standard light bulbs and nightlights can interfere with sleep patterns. Since we wanted a very very small amount of light in the room for late night diaper changes and nursing, we wanted a light that was not going to interfere with us trying to establish sleep patterns with a baby.

 In the photo above you can see the motion sensor on the night light.

The photo (above) shows just how thin the light actually is from the side profile. Not bulky at all!

SomniLight's night lights were cool to the touch after hours of being on so they are definitely safe to use around children without fear of them touching the light and hurting themselves. These were the perfect nightlights to get for the nursery and our hallway. They don't disturb my sleep and I can't "see" the light through my eyelids when it produces ambient red light in the room. These are a great 2 pack deal and we recommend these if you are looking for a night light that truly will not disturb your sleep pattern!

Saving the best for last: SomniLight's dimmable nursery lamp! This was truly a lucky treasure we found when looking for a nursery night light that with low blue light emissions. This nursery lamp uses an A/C that provides consistent lighting without needing to recharge like some other lights that have been very popular these days. We were looking for a warm lighting that was dimmable for our nursery that wouldn't wake up the baby or make them too alert during middle of the night feedings or diaper changes and this light fit the bill.  SomniLight dimmable nursery lamp comes in at just 1 lb, 5 oz and measure 16"H by 7"L by 3.75"W - does not take up much space at all!

Per SomniLight's website, "SomniLight's dimmable nursery lamp uses specially designed amber LEDs which emit only amber wavelengths of light (peaking at 592 nM), free from the blue and green wavelengths that can disrupt the sleep of mother and baby. As numerous studies have found, even bright amber light has no negative effect on melatonin production (Kayumov, 2005). Our dimmable amber nursery lamp allows you to use as much or as little light as you need to safely navigate the nursery and care for your baby, without worrying about the harmful effects of blue light on your sleep."

We love the option of having LED lights because it conserves energy (up to 90% less energy than your standard incandescent bulbs) using just 6 W of power. We've converted all the lights in our home to energy efficient bulbs so it was only natural to look for a product that had those same standards for our nursery!

My favorite part of this lamp is that the dimmable touch sensor panel at the base that allows for three brightness levels: low (nightlight setting), medium, and high light settings. This is not a primary lamp I plan on using for the nursery as we have a ceiling lamp, but this is what we will be using during sleep/nap times when mom or dad need light to check on baby so we don't alert and wake him. The feature I like most about this dimmable lamp is that it has a memory of your last brightness level selection!! We have a few touch lamps that are dimmable at home, both wireless and A/C and none of them turn on at the level of brightness you turned it off on and requires you to circulate through all the settings to turn it off. Meaning, if you only want to use the low light, when you are going to turn if off, you just need to long press the lamp base and it turns off without having you cycle through medium and high light settings - possibly waking up your precious one!

To demonstrate this favorite feature of mine with the nursery lamp and its memory of its last light setting, I've uploaded this video below!

Buy your red LED night light here and your dimmable nursery lamp here!

Disclosure: This complimentary item was provided for review purposes. As always, all opinions are my own and no compensation was received. This post contains affiliate links.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

The Mommy Hook Review and Giveaway!!

The Mommy Hook has been touted as a must have accessory for your stroller and I was not convinced I needed this in my life. I was so wrong. The Mommy Hook is a game changer for holding purses and bags easily on your stroller without taking the time to use the stroller hooks on our diaper bag. Those are great, but they take time to put together on each side of the stroller. This is just one giant aluminum carabiner that you attach your purses or bags on.

The Mommy Hook is huge. I didn't expect it to be has big as it was so I took a picture of it next to my hand to give you a better idea of just how big it is. I also wasn't convinced this was fit onto the handlebar of my stroller but I had no problems. I also wasn't convinced this was safe because this would displace the weight of the stroller backwards, but in the video I took below, you can tell that with just my purse, it was safe and didn't tip backwards while the stroller frame was empty. If you have a child in the stroller or the car seat, this is definitely very stable and safe. Obviously you still need to use common sense and judge the safety of how much weight you are using The Mommy Hook for.

Another great use for The Mommy Hook is that once you grow out of needing it with your stroller, you can just throw it in your trunk and use it for taking in your groceries all in one trip by hooking all the handles of your bags into The Mommy Hook! I also love that there is foam on The Mommy Hook for added protection so the metal doesn't rub on anything.

Now, the moment you've been waiting for, our GIVEAWAY! The Mommy Hook was kind enough to provide us FOUR "The Mommy Hooks" to give away!! We have 2 pink and 2 black ones to raffle off. Here is how to enter the raffle. Comment below with your name, email, and how The Mommy Hook will be a game changer for you! The winners will be selected at random. Your names will be tossed in a hat at the end of October and the winners will be contacted the first week of November. I will contact you (via email) for your mailing address at that time and send you The Mommy Hook! Happy commenting!!

Buy The Mommy Hook here!

Disclosure: This complimentary item was provided for review purposes. As always, all opinions are my own and no compensation was received. This post contains affiliate links.