Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Giveaway! Purex Dryer Sheets Review and Giveaway

~I was sent this product for review.  All opinions are my own and no other compensation was given.~

I don't use dryer sheets for every load I do.  I don't use them with cloth diapers because they are a no-no and I don't usually use them with Eleanor's clothes, but I love how they make my towels smell and the subtle scent they leave on out clothes.

But I love Purex products and so when given the opportunity to try the new Purex Crystals Dryer Sheets I was on board with it.

Lavender Blossom

I didn't have to open the box these were shipped in to smell them.  Actually my first impression was that they were really strong and it turned me off a little.  Then I opened the shipping box to see that the dryer sheet box had come open and I'm sure that was the reason they had such a strong odor.

Once the laundry was dry I could still smell fragrance, but it was faint.  I might be strange, but I actually think I might use two because I kind of like that fresh smell and fragrances have never bothered me.  I'd only do this if I was just washing my clothes or towels because I'm not so sure Rob wants to go to work smelling like Lavender Blossoms.

I think that smell/scent issue aside they did what they are made to do.  My towels and shirts felt softer and I didn't have to peel them apart to fold and put them away.  I even stuffed some into my sheets when I put those away so the next time I make the bed the smell should be there and make crawling into a freshly made bed (which is one of the best feelings) so much more enjoyable.

I have two coupons to giveaway to try these new dryer sheets. I'm going to make this one easy and all you have to do is leave me a comment (and your email address) answering the following question.  What is your favorite non traditional way to use dryer sheets?  For example, I've used them along the baseboards to repel dust. 

Giveaway will end at 11:59 pm on 5/8/14 and is open to US only.  Winners will have 48 hours to respons. 

Monday, April 28, 2014

The Eleanor Update: Week 29

We tried avocado this week as a puree and she seemed to like it.  I think avocado is boring and bland (sorry if you like it), but I've heard it is a good first food so I bought some when they were on sale and we mashed it up and froze it for her.

I've also tried baby led weaning a few times.  The first attempt with a banana she just mushed it in her hands but didn't try to eat it and the second she figured it out
(see video)  I gave her a sugar snap pea also and she put it in her mouth but didn't eat any.

I think it's cute when she nurses like this. Hand behind her head holding onto my finger. 

She fell asleep at breakfast for the first time last week.

I try to do oatmeal mixed with breast milk every morning.  She only gets an ounce or so of that and then later in the day she usually gets an ounce or so of veggies.  I'm nervous about giving her to much solids (although I know she doesn't even eat all of what she gets) because I'm worried that she won't want to nurse and my milk production will drop.

I pumped a few times last week because I've been having to dump milk a lot lately.  I have been using milk from November for church bottles -which she never takes - and once I warm them I can't reuse them.  Or I'll give her some in her oatmeal and try a sippy cup but she won't always take it.

Luckily I only freeze in 2-3 ounces so it's not a ton, but I still hate it being dumped.  I did freeze some from this last week in an ice cube tray to use for mixing with oatmeal.

This week was better.  Not great but better.  At least for bedtime.  Not all the time but more often than not she goes to bed okay.  It might be at 8pm on night and 10pm the next but she's usually okay once she's down.  She'll sleep 6-8 hours before waking up, she'll nurse and then sleep a few more.

She's really become a belly sleeper this week.  I don't love it (because of the 'put your baby back to sleep' and 'back is best' campaigns), but the one time I tried to flip her over she woke up angry at me, and the flipped back over crying.  Sometimes on the monitor it looks like her face is straight into the mattress and that makes me go check on her.

On Friday night I was trying to nurse her to sleep and she kept latching for a second, then pulling off and yelling.  I was paranoid that I wasn't having a letdown (I've mentioned before that I've never felt it).  I took her in the bedroom to nurse her and laid her on my chest for a minute and she kept lifting her head up and down like she was tired; I set her on the bed next to me and she was almost out immediately.  So I put her in the crib, she cried for a minute but then fell back asleep.

My best friend was in town for the first time since Thanksgiving and it was great to see her and have her see Eleanor again!

I feel like Eleanor has great fine motor skills, but I might just be a proud mom.  :) She can hold a good size plastic ball in one hand very well.  I don't know if that's normal though.

She's become an expert at scooting backwards.

She found her thumb!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Bumble Buns Code Word

Here are the code words for the Bumble Buns giveaway

Monday: Hybrid
Tuesday: Cloth
Wednesday: Fluffy
Thursday: Clouds
Friday: Bumble Buns
Saturday Eco Friendy
Sunday: Eleanor

Bumble Buns Diaper Review and Giveaway!

*I received this product to review.  No other compensation was given.  All opinions are my own*

I've talked about how I've been cloth diapering more and I am at the point where I do it almost all the time now.  Rob even changed a few last week (granted I handed them to him; he would have picked a disposable).  So now that we are using them more, I need more of them (or really just think I do)

I was browsing instagram one night while nursing Ellie and came across this adorable diaper and fell in love.  It's so unique and I love that it is hand made.  My favorite cloth diapers are the ones that are handmade by moms (and sometimes dads) because so much more is put into them and being able to help support the little guys is pretty neat too. 

My mom used to sing this song to me, and I sing it to Eleanor almost everyday during diaper changes so I knew it was perfect.

I reached out to Becky, the shop owner of Bumble Buns to see if she would be interested in a review.  She responded yes and she was willing to do a giveaway as well.  I was super excited and was stalking  patiently waiting for it to arrive.

Here is a little bit about Becky and a picture of her and one of her babies. I love how she came up with the shop name.

I am a WAHM of five littles under 7 and married to my best friend.  About four years ago, I was increasingly unimpressed with the selection of children's clothes for girls.  So, my husband bought me a machine and I started learning to sew adorable clothes and diapers for my daughters.  This soon turned into a creative outlet for me and three years later (after much research on safety and compliancy!) Bumble Buns Creations was born. We decided on the name because it was a running joke that their cloth covered bums looked like they'd been stung by a bee. We strive for excellent customer service and outstanding quality with creative flair.  I hope you love your item as much as I loved crafting it! 


This diaper is designed to fit from 12 lbs to 35 lbs.

The inside of the diaper is this soft soft minky fabric plus it has a hidden fleece core for extra absorbency.  I may have put this against my face (obviously once I first got it and it was unused); it was that soft.  Even after washing it was still quite soft, but no more face rubbing  :).

The insert is made from 2 layers of bamboo velour and 1 layer of extra thristy zorb core.  When folded as seen in the above picture it equals 6 layers. 

Once it was ready and all prepped (instructions are included with the diaper) I was so excited to put it on her.  I put it on her, and went to adjust it because it was loose and she had already peed in it.  In like 20 seconds, so I'm guessing she probably liked it as well. 

The tag did come loose in the wash (doesn't effect function) so I just pulled it off.  Otherwise there were no issues with the diaper after being prepped.

The diaper fit well around the waist, but was actually loose around her thighs, which is surprising to me because she has rolls for days. 

Love those chunky thighs!

Also surprising to me is the fact that it's actually trimmer than I expected when first looking at it.  She still has some bulk going on, but you can see it's not super fluffy.

Because the diaper was slightly loose around the legs it leaked a little onto her onesie around her legs.  
I didn't have a cover on because I wanted to see how absorbent it was without and while she peed in it right away, she isn't really a heavy wetter during the day so it was a while before I noticed it had leaked. 

I kind of wondered if I was missing something because a diaper made to fit 12-35 pound babies should fit around the legs snugly.  So I emailed Becky and asked her. She got back to me right away and asked if I was folding down the rise.  I wasn't.  Issue solved.   I was impressed with the speed at which she responded (especially with 5 kids! I'm not even that fast with 1).

Around the house I would feel comfortable leaving her in just this diaper for shorter (1-2 hours) periods of time but if I was leaving and going to be out I would use a cover for absorbency, although covering it up is a shame.

Now that I am following Bumble Buns Creations on Instagram and Facebook I can see all these adorable diapers being worked on and finished and it's hard to not want them all. 

I think Eleanor needs new diapers all the time.  Her daddy's birthday?  She needs a new diaper.  My first mother's day?  SHE needs a new diaper.  Going to church?  She needs a new diaper.  You get the point.  I 'think' I can at least convince his that she needs one for her birthday (which is less than 6 months away) though.

If you are looking for something so unique and want to support a mom doing what she loves check out Bumble Buns.

AND Becky has offered up a $20 shop credit.  Not only does she sell fitted hybrids like I reviewed, she also makes pocket diapers, cloth wipes, and clothes for kids.  Enter using the rafflecopter form below.

Giveaway open to US and ends on 5/2/14

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, April 21, 2014

The Eleanor Update: Week 28

She wasn't in a picture taking mood like normal.

She was doing the scrunchy face for a while and then stopped but did it over the weekend.  I love the
scrunch face and missed it.

Now that we've been doing solids she's been pooping more often.  When she was little (littler I should say) she'd only go once a week, but now it's several times a week.

Rob and I celebrated our 3rd anniversary and finally went on our first date since Eleanor was born.  My mom watched Eleanor and while I've been away from her (usually short trips, but my mom and sister have watched her when I've had appointments) it was so so strange that we both were.  I didn't check in, but worried about her because that's what mom's do. She did great and had some fun time with my mom. :)

Yesterday was Easter and Eleanor got to wear a fancy dress and see some of my family she hasn't seen since before Christmas (some of my aunts she hasn't seen since she was just a few weeks old).  I will put a few pictures in this post but for a major Easter photo dump see this post.

She experienced grass for the first time.

We went to a playgroup on Friday and while there were other babies there, they all had older siblings and I was bored.  I expected something a little more structured since the group had a theme, but only the last few minutes (it was an hour and a half) had anything to do with it and it was just 1 song and 1 story.  They also played outside and I wasn't expecting that and thankfully had her a sweatshirt in the car.  I'm not sure I'd go back until she get's bigger, but it was something different and she seemed to like it.

She is sooo loud when she wants to be.  Rob and I can't even have a conversation over her yelling.  It's kind of funny though I guess.

She hasn't been nursing as much.  I know that part of it is probably her getting older and part that she started solids, but I always get paranoid that she's not nursing because she wants to wean.  I really don't want that and am not ready for it.  I know she gives me pain and sometimes I wish that someone else could feed her, but I do love looking down at her or her holding my fingers.  I know that I'm a totally sap!

This last week she's had carrots and peas and mixed veggies as well as oatmeal and a banana apple mix.  We were going to hold off on fruit, but I had some given to us that was getting to the expiration date and so I wanted to try it.

I try to do oatmeal most mornings and a veggie at dinner time.  Usually she only gets an ounce (if that) and most of the time she just kind of spits it out, but on Saturday she had mixed veggies and was eating almost all of it.

I go back and forth on doing baby led weaning  I want to do it, but Rob feels more comfortable with purees.

If I say it's been a rough week is that enough? I've tried to be more consistent but honestly I'm just really stressed out.  Friday night she would not go to sleep until after 10 pm and then when she was finally asleep it didn't last to long.  She was up once around 2 am (slept on my chest) and then was up for the day at 4:30 am.  I'd tried to feed her to get her back to sleep and that didn't work.  Then she had a poop a 5 am so I changed that, fed her again and she was not wanting to sleep.  Finally at a little before 6 I woke Rob up to take her.  I usually never do that, but I was starting to feel the frustration building that 4 hours a sleep will lead to. I wound up only getting an hour and a half or so of sleep more, but it helped.

Last night I nursed her, put her in her crib asleep and then 10 minutes later she woke up.  I knew she wasn't hungry or wet so Rob went in and she normally just cried until I get her, but she let him comfort her and then she fell back asleep and slept 7 hours almost.  I fed her and she slept a few more.  I kept her in her crib and she did okay, but I kind of missed having her in bed with me. 


She got that sock

So I did this post differently and put pictures throughout it instead of all at the end.  Keep it this way or go back to the old way?

Tiny Elephant Bowtique Review Plus Giveaway

*I received this headband for review, however all opinions are my own. No other compensation was given.*

Before getting pregnant I used to think that big headbands were silly and then I found out I was pregnant and having a girl and suddenly I wanted all the things!

I wanted headbands and pink and everything girly and often find myself browsing for them online.

During one such browsing session I found one and I knew it would go perfect with a dress Eleanor had.  And then I went to the shop page and found many many more I wanted.  Like almost every single one wanted.  :)  And once I can convince Rob that Eleanor needs these I will be getting her more.

When Ashley, the mom behind Tiny Elephant Bowtique agreed to a review I was excited.

Ashley is the mom to a little girl named Addison who is just a few months older than Eleanor.  She started Tiny Elephant Bowtiques because she also loves headbands and all things girly for her daughter who rarely is without a headband.  Ashley is a second grade teacher who makes the headbands in her free time (although I'm sure that's limited).  

Ashley & Addison

Sweet Addison who was the inspiration!

This headband was made very well.  I know this because I handed it to Eleanor and then tried to grab it back.  When she wants something she has the death grip on it and it becomes a game of tug of war.   Nothing came loose.  This is good because I would have worried about the center gem coming loose and her trying to eat it (I don't let her wear it in the car for this reason though).   The pink flower is made from chiffon which is more of a delicate fabric but held up fine.

Another thing I loved about this headband is that it didn't leave marks on her head when I took it off.  Sometimes this is a problem because Eleanor has a big head (95% at her 6 month appointment!).  The headband had plenty of stretch to it meaning it will fit her for a while.

Eleanor looks absolutely adorable in this headband!  Even Rob thought it was cute.  Actually he said it looked liked candy (the big swirly lollipop kind) but I think that means he liked it.

You can check out all the gorgeous headbands on etsy or can connect on facebook as well.

Ashley was generous enough to even send an extra one to giveaway! The winner will get the one pictured below.  

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Our day in pictures: Easter edition

Today we celebrated Resurrection Sunday.  Church was packed and I loved it!  I wish it was like that all the time.

Eleanor didn't get much in her Easter basket; some little people eggs and a Bernstein bears Easter book.  As an after thought after buying into mom guilt because I saw all these pictures of baskets on facebook and instagram I added a fisher price play phone (intended for her birthday) but that was it.  

The weather today was gorgeous!  Seriously the best day yet this year.  It was 70* and sunny.  

And now for pictures!

I wore this dress Easter 1987.  I would have kept it on her, but it was a
little big and so I wanted her to wear a different one first.

She actually sat pretty well as I read her this book

My mom, Eleanor and I

Four generations

My grandma and Eleanor

Experiencing grass for the first time

This was actually from yesterday but it counts because it's an Easter shirt.