Monthly Archives: May 2011
The sacrifices of Motherhood begin when your body is no longer your own in pregnancy. Sometimes it seems your body is changing daily as your baby grows and develops. The changes your body undergo are all worth it when you see your little baby and get to kiss her fingers and toes, when your little guy starts to walk or when you catch a glimpse of her first smile.
We would all do it 100 times over because we love our children so much, but we also realize that it isn’t always easy to accept our post-pregnancy bodies. It’s easy to become discouraged by stretch marks, that extra flab of skin that won’t go away, etc. We tend to think we are the only one with this “problem”.
We came across a website The Shape of a Mother. It is a refreshing site where moms can post photos of their post-pregnancy bodies, talk to other moms and share their struggles, hopes and dreams. We love how honest and real the site is. It encourages us to cherish our bodies and discover that perhaps what we label as a flaw isn’t a flaw at all.
Check it out and tell us what you think!
*Please note there is some nudity on this site due to the post-pregnancy photos posted.
There are some Spring days that seem like an endless downpour of rain and before you know it your children are ready to climb the walls. One of our co-workers gave us her tried and true rainy day tip - a special toy box! In this toy box you have toys that spark imagination such as special coloring books, clay, Legos, dolls or cars, etc. These toys only come out when it’s been a string of rainy or bad weather days. Your children will be excited to be reacquainted with toys they haven’t seen for awhile.
What tips do you have for kids with cabin fever?
We recently had the opportunity to get to know Cherise from Mom and More blog. We love her excitement and love for being a mommy and finding great deals – it’s contagious! We were able to catch up with her and had to share her interview with our readers.
Cherise, you were never a blog “fanatic” & only a few years ago began blogging yourself. What inspired you to connect with other parents through a blog?
When I had my first son I was pretty much on my own, as none of our friends had kids yet. I felt like my whole life was changing diapers and feeding my baby, I didn’t have anything that I did just for myself or anyone to really talk to about being a mom. I started my blog just two months after my second child was born to have somewhere to organize my thoughts, have adult conservation (even though it was through posts, comments, and emails), and just escape for a little bit. I love reading comments from my readers, especially when I ask for help and I love to read other blogs!
You have some great reviews of various products on your blog. What is your favorite part of reviewing products?
When I started blogging I had no clue I could actually review products on my own and then once I started I got hooked! I love reviewing products because there are so many great products out there that either don’t get advertised or moms aren’t sure of. I try to post any issues I found with the product so moms know if the product would work for their own child (or themselves.) I have always been an opinionated person and have been very fortunate to work with great companies. I do want to add though that its not all fun and games, reviewing products is a lot of work as I research the company, work with PR reps, test of the product, take pictures, organize my thoughts into a blog post, include all the links and if I am including a giveaway I have to work that out.
You are expecting a baby girl. How has this pregnancy been different than your first two with boys?
With my first two pregnancies (both boys) I was hungry all the time and had tons of cravings. They were both also very active kicking me and moving around, and my belly was not as round and cute! With this baby I am not really any hungrier than usual and don’t have any odd cravings. My belly is also firmer and round, and she doesn’t move too much (yet!).
Do you have a favorite “mom moment” that you can share with us?
My favorite mom moment just happened recently. My 4 year old has had speech issues and is slowly saying new words every day. About a week ago we were watching television and he said his name “Aidan” – I was so shocked! Before then he would just say his name is “A” and now he can say his name, spell it aloud and write it! I think I may have taken those things for granted if it wasn’t such a great accomplishment for him to speak words.
As a mom of soon to be 3 little ones under 4 years old, do you have any advice for first-time parents?
Take everyday as it comes and don’t try to do so much. I have friends who plan every day with their kids with events or playdates. While I do plan things here and there, mainly we go with the flow. I try not to get mad at every little thing, but rather focus on bigger issues that are wrong. I also try to avoid housework or chores while the kids are napping and use that time for myself whether I read a book, nap, or blog!
Now for a quick glance into Cherise’s life.
If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go & what would you do there? I would go on a cruise ship, somewhere tropical. My husband and I went on a cruise for our honeymoon and were so tired from our wedding and too many excursions that we didn’t really get to relax and enjoy it. I would love to go on a cruise, lay out by the pool, walk casually around the ports we stop at, and do some light shopping. (As fun as the excursions were on each island we stopped at, we did too much.)
What’s your guilty pleasure? Vampire books, shows and movies. I didn’t get into vampires until after the first Twilight movie came out when my tween sister begged me to watch it with her, since then I have been hooked.
What is an instant de-stressor for you? Blogging or just surfing the Internet. Just getting on the computer I usually can find something I have been searching for, find a great post to read, or blog about my own life!
If you had a free day with no obligations, what would you do with it? I would love to spend the day with my mom shopping, eating out, and getting some pampering. She works a lot and is not the type of mom to do those things.
If someone was going to write a book of your life, what would the title be? I think the name of my blog Mom and More sums up my life as a book title. I am a mom first, but I am also a wife, daughter, sister, niece, granddaughter, friend, and woman! I think it is important for moms to have something outside of just being a mom!
Hop over to Cherise’s blog – Mom & More, you will find a new friend who you we know you will enjoy getting to know!
May is National Bike and Get Outside with your child month and we have a fun activity for you and your kids. Bike riding is not only fun, but a great way to get exercise. These nice Spring days are a perfect opportunity to get outside and bike, but how about making it extra special by having your children decorate their bikes?
- Streamers – streamers are a fun, inexpensive way for your child to decorate handlebars and the main frame of his bike with all sorts of colors!
- Stickers – Sponge Bob bike? Dora the Explorer bike? Princess bike? Superman bike? Not a problem! Get inexpensive stickers of your child’s favorite character and let her decorate her bike with them. Does her favorite character change weekly? Not a problem because they will peel off easily!
- Spray Chalk – want your child to express his personality on his bike without changing the color permanently? Get some spray chalk. It adheres to metal, but easily washes off with water!
And don’t forget to teach your child bike safety – helmet use, getting off the bike & walking it across the street, etc. We like the tips at the Safe Kids Bicycling and Skating Safety site.
If your child is too small to bike, you can always look into safe bike seat attachments for little kids.
Will you be participating in the National Bike Month?
Kolcraft has a new Step Starter™ 2-in-1 Walker! This walker grows with your baby from an activity walker to a walk-behind walker! We love all the value you get from one product and who can resist the cute little owl toys?
Some features we love:
- Easily converts from activity walker to walk-behind walker
- Electronic Discovery Center™ includes lights, music, whimsical sounds and soft toy owls
- Includes height adjustment for growing babies
- Non-skid friction pads for child safety
- Easy-to-clean seat pad
The Step Starter™ 2 in 1 walker is available at Babies R Us!
What is your favorite feature of Kolcraft’s new baby walker?
Going on a vacation or out to eat as a family can be way out of budget range especially in this economy, but there is a way to have fun as a family without breaking the bank! Family Finds website, allows you to get the best deals for families for vacations, restaurants, Summer Camp, toys, clothes and more! It’s a free and easy sign up where you include your zip code so deals can be targeted to your particular area. If there is a deal you like, you just buy the deal at a reduced price. It’s that easy!
What are your favorite family deal sites?
There is nothing like opening the windows and letting in fresh air and having a top-to-bottom clean house especially after a long winter. Instead of Spring cleaning being a terrible chore, it can be fun for you and your kids with these easy tips.
- Music Motivator - put on your kids favorite music to get them moving. Time passes a bit more quickly when music is involved.
- Mayor for a Day – divide the rooms of the house among your kids and let them be “mayor” of that room. They are in charge of making sure that room is in top shape. You can even give them a top hat to wear as they play the role of mayor.
- Special Prize – whoever does the best job cleaning gets to pick out what is for dinner either that night or a night that week.
- Scavenger Hunt - go to the Dollar Store and pick out a few little gifts. Hide them in the rooms the children are cleaning so that they will find them as they clean.
- Chart It - have a chart with each child’s name. As they complete a chore, they get a sticker next to their name. Whoever has the most stickers by the end of spring cleaning gets to pick out a movie to watch that night or whatever night is convenient.
Spring cleaning can also be a chemical-free experience! We love these sites for easy-to-make green, homemade cleaning products!
What spring cleaning tips do you have?
We believe that motherhood should be celebrated every day and didn’t want the Mother’s Day fun to end the day after so we are having a Mother’s Day contest from May 9-15 until midnight CST! The winner will receive a $100 Amex gift certificate which you can use to shop, pamper yourself or have a night out on the town with friends – whatever your mommy heart desires!
It’s easy to enter:
Just visit our Facebook fan page and leave a comment finishing these two sentences:
- My fondest memory of my mom is…
- The thing I love most about being a mom is…
We can’t wait to see your posts! Good luck!
Mother’s Day is this Sunday and what better gift for that special mom, grandma, aunt or friend than a homemade card? We love this easy-to-make butterfly card that will be sure to bring a smile to any mom’s face.
What You Need:
- Scissors (Adult Use Only)
- Construction Paper (2 colors)
- Non Toxic Glue
- Hole Punch (Optional)
What To Do:
- Fold two pieces of construction paper in half, placing one piece inside of the other
- Draw half of a butterfly along the fold
- Cut along the line, keeping the two pieces of paper together. You will now have 2 separate butterflies
- Keeping only one butterfly folded, draw a smaller butterfly within and cut it out.
- Glue this smaller butterfly onto the larger, alternately colored butterfly.
- On the reverse side, glue on the other cut-out piece.
- Cut out a body and antennas and glue onto the inside piece.
- Using markers, a hole punch or scraps of construction paper, decorate your butterfly
- Write a message to mom on the inside of the card
What are some of your favorite Mother’s Day cards?
We have all seen the devastating photos of the tornado damage throughout the Southern United States. People have literally been left with nothing but the clothes on their backs. That means families have no food, shelter or even the priceless things that can’t be replaced like wedding albums, photos of their children, etc. While we can’t replace photos, Kolcraft has eased the burdens of families with children by donating skids of strollers and bassinets.
Kolcraft’s tornado relief efforts began with Paul Comardo, Quality Manager of our NC Plant. His wife, Jill, has been a Red Cross volunteer since 1995. She has volunteered her services responding to many disasters including floods in North and South Dakota and Georgia, hurricane relief in Puerto Rico, a 6 week stint in NYC during the 9/11 terrorist disaster plus responding to local home fires and such as the need arises . Her training and experience qualifies her as a Disaster Services Supervisor.
Jill and Paul brainstormed on ways that Kolcraft could help the families who had been impacted by the tornado. Kolcraft’s president, Tom Koltun, generously donated baby products that were loaded into a truck and brought to Fayetteville where there was a combined donation event between the Red Cross, Salvation Army and the United Way.
There was immense gratitude from the volunteers and Kolcraft was happy to be part of the relief efforts.
It was very gratifying to help and my wife and I appreciate Tom Koltun’s generosity very much. It’s nice to know you work for a company that cares. – Paul Camardo, Kolcraft employee
If you would like to donate to the Red Cross to help the victims of the tornado, you can find more information here.