Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Winner of Discovery Girls Prize Package!

And the winner is Give Peas a Chance!  She has been notified and has 48 hours to respond to my e-mail!
Congrats to her and Thanks to all the entries!

Pretty as a Peacock

Miss M....Face Painting at Brookfield Zoo..

Then (2007)

Now (2011)

Monday, June 27, 2011

Don't Throw Out That Swim Diaper!

I have been using cloth diapers on my 2 year old since she was about six weeks old.  Although I love using them and encourage others to do the same, I realize that not everyone can or wants to make the same choice.  I have a suggestion for you if you do not cloth diaper BUT you do take your little one to the pool or splash pad...


These diapers are not only so much cuter than the throw away swim diapers they will also save you SO MUCH money!  I remember when Miss M was in diapers (disposables) and we would buy the Huggies Swim Diapers.  When she was in swim lessons and also when it was summertime, I swear we had to buy a package every couple of weeks or so.  That was money I was literally throwing away especially since she would wear the diaper for such a short amount of time.  I hated it but I didn't know of any other alternative.  Then I had C.

With C, we have never used a disposable swim diaper.  Rather I use a FuzziBunz cloth diaper that is normally too small on her but if you remove the insert it fits her perfectly.  If you don't have old cloth diapers, etc. then I highly recommend you check out the washable swim diapers that are on the market today.

Here are some pictures of the cuteness:
AppleCheeks in Samoan Sunset (Retail $18)

Swimmis by Bummis in Bubbles Print (Retail $12.75)

Swimmis in Turtle Print

As you can see, there are choices for both boys and girls.  I just like the girls prints a bit more because I am a bit biased!

For $12.75 you can get a diaper that will literally last you the entire summer.  Compare that with a 12 pack of Huggies Disposable Swim Diapers that will cost you $9.00 and not to mention that that will not be the only time you pay that price.  You will be probably be spending $20 and more over the course of a summer depending on how much you go to the pool/beach.

As far as caring for these diapers, it is really simple.  If they happen to poop (yes, I said it) while wearing it, the diaper will catch it.  After you take it off your child simply dump the waste into the toilet and rinse off.  After it is dry you can put it back on your child for some more pool time fun.  

If you are interested in either of the diapers I showed above, please Click here to visit Kelly's Closet.
Once there, click on "Swim Diapers" found on the left side of the main page.

What is your thoughts, experiences with Washable Swim Diapers?  Have you heard about them before?  Why haven't you tried them yet?  Please share.  Thanks!

Kelly's Closet link is an affiliate link.  I do get a penny or two from any sale made from it.  Thanks in advance for your purchase!  Also, the awesome Discovery Girls Giveaway ends tomorrow!  Enter here.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

All Free and All the Time

Father's Day Craftiness

P.S. Don't forget about the awesome Discovery Girls Magazine Giveaway!  Less than a week to get your entries in!  GO ENTER NOW!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Are You In Need of a Survival Guide for Your Tween? A Review

The Discovery Girls Magazine's Survival Guide, a collector's edition of the past ten years of the magazine, is about to hit the newsstand a week from today!  I was lucky enough to be given an advance copy to aid in my giveaway going on now.  As you can see from the photo above, Miss M. couldn't wait to get her hands on the magazine as well!  This edition is chock full of advice, quizzes, embarrassing moments, and everything else that the tween in your life loves to read and talk about.  It is very well organized into the sections that Discovery Girls is known for and neatly shows how girls questions and concerns haven't really changed over the ten years.

What I really appreciated is the background story of Discovery Girls in the making.  It is a truly inspiring story of one mom's quest to find something better and more meaningful for her daughter to read.  The other part of this edition that I really enjoyed reading was the "Girls Changing the World: Role Model Contest Winners" pages.  These girls are your average girl doing extraordinary things.  What an inspiration for not just a tween to read but truly anyone.  I love that!  Lastly, I loved the lack of ads blasting a counter message to what Discovery Girls is preaching.  If there are any ads, they are truly understated and fit right in.

With this special edition, come two FREE gifts! One is a style guide booklet and the other are stickers.  Miss M ran off with the stickers shortly after I had her pose for her picture!  I remember loving stickers at this age and older so I am sure they won't last long in any household.  The style guide is a neat item that girls can put in their purse and take with them shopping, etc.  It provides photos of real life girls modeling different "looks" and then shows the different clothes that make up that outfit. Some of the looks are "Preppy Perfect" "Beachy Chic" and "Boho Beat."  This guide is really like having your own stylist in your pocket!

Overall, I really liked the Survival Guide and recommend it especially to anyone that may be curious about Discovery Girls Magazine but not quite ready to comment to a subscription.  It really is the best of what Discovery Girls has to offer.

Check it out!

Buy It!  Available everywhere next Tuesday, June 28th for $9.95!

Win It! Go to my giveaway here and you could win it along with a full year subscription and Fab Girls book series.

Disclaimer: I received the above item free of charge from the magazine but the thoughts are all mine.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Father's Day can kinda suck.

My father is dead.  This is not "new" news.  He has been dead for almost 27 years.  You would think that with such a long time since his passing that this "holiday" would not hurt as much.  I think the pain doesn't ever go away, it simply changes.

I was 6 years old when my dad was diagnosed with brain cancer.  He was 39 or so at the time.  Fast forward, I am currently 37 and my oldest daughter is 6 1/2.  Things are starting to feel real around here.  I look at her and I can't help but be reminded on how young and little I was when the crap started to hit the fan, if you will.  I now see how young he was and how scared he must have been.

He lived with the cancer for four years.  He was a hell of a fighter and was bound and determined to live to walk me down the aisle.  Needless to say, he didn't get to.  I was 10, he was 43.  My sister was 19.  My brother was 17.  My mom was 43.  All of us too darn young for any of this.

This year seems to have effected me especially more so since his birthday is tomorrow.  He would have been 70.  He has missed so much.  So many weddings, births and birthdays.  Grandchildren.  Great-Grandchild.  So much life.

Yet with him gone for so long, I can still feel his presence.  I feel him right now saying "Why the hell are you writing such a sappy post, Angie?"  "Don't you have better things to do?"  He left my life too early to really sit me down for those life lessons that I see blasted all over the internets this past weekend.  But he is here and not here to give me that little shot in the arm and boost of confidence I need when I might not always have it.

I miss him so much.

Hug your parents.  Be fully present in the lives of your children. Life is way too short.

My daddy and me - 1983

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Classic Rewards at Classic Cinemas--A Great Deal!

Yesterday, I went to see Win Win at our local Classic Cinema discount movie theater in Naperville, IL.  I love going there because not only is it cheap $3(!) but you can see some great movies that perhaps didn't get a very long airplay on the big movie houses.  Win Win is such a movie and it was really a winner (pun intended).  Highly recommended.

Anyway, before I went to the movies I checked Classic Cinema's website to double check the showtimes.  While I was browsing I noticed they had a new rewards program that I wasn't aware of.  It has been a while since I have seen a movie so I don't know how long they have had this program in place, but it is a great deal.  You simply go to their website and fill in your information.  You will then see a page to print and take with you when you go to the theater.  I noticed when I signed up that I got 500 bonus points just for subscribing.  What I didn't know is that those 500 points translate into a free movie ticket!  So when I went to get my ticket and showed them my printed out form, I was pleasantly surprised to receive my ticket  for FREE!

The rewards card acts like any such card.  You receive points for purchases (tickets, popcorn, soda, gift cards, etc.) you make at the theater.  Those points then translate into free stuff!

I greatly encourage you to see if there is a Classic Cinema in your neck of the woods.  Do you live in Freeport?  Oak Park?  St. Charles?  Woodstock?  North Riverside?  Elmhurst?  There is a Classic Cinema in all of these towns.  If there is one near you, get yourself a rewards card and go see a movie.  You will be glad you did!

P.S. Don't forget about my giveaway found here!

Disclaimer:  I didn't receive any compensation for this post, I just found a great deal and wanted to share.  Sorry if you don't live in the Chicagoland area and can't partake in this deal, but perhaps your local discount movie house has a similar program.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

A Weekend Filled With Nothing Much But..

Torturing Cousins...

Being An Awesome Soccer Player..
Reading Mommy Her Birthday Cards...

and catching a little piggy on the sly.

P.S. Don't forget I have a simply wonderful giveaway going on that you do not want to miss!

Monday, June 13, 2011

FREE Father's Day Printables

Father's Day is this Sunday!

While the girls are mum on what they have up their sleeves to give their daddy this year, here are some great (and free!) items that can be printed off your colored printer (or hand-colored) and used as cards or whatever your crafty mind can conjure!


P.S. Don't forget to enter my giveaway found here!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Is Your Girl a Discovery Girl? A Review and #GIVEAWAY! CLOSED!

Have you heard of Discovery Girls Magazine?  It is a magazine geared towards young girls from ages 8 to (about) 14.  Although my oldest daughter is only 6 1/2 and haven't hit this core audience yet, I was curious to take a look since I realize that before I know it, she will be considered a tween.  Gasp!

Discovery Girls was started ten years ago by a mom that wanted a magazine for her daughter that wasn't readily available.  One that would address the common struggles her young daughter was facing in an age appropriate way.  One that would feature real girls in real life situations with real life answers.  One that wouldn't be "boy crazy" but instead understand the delicate balance between little girl and growing up girl that this age is at.  Hence, Discovery Girls was born.

As part of my review I received two magazines.  The standard edition for ages 8 and up and the middle school edition for ages 11 and up.  First off, I LOVE that they have two magazines.  Although these ages aren't very far apart, they can be light and day in the sense of what these two age groups are interested or focused on.  Still, the two magazines are very similar.  The only main difference is that in the middle school edition they talk about celebrities, your body changing and the road ahead ... after Discovery Girls.

My daughter enjoyed looking at the regular edition.  She enjoyed reading (and laughing with) the embarrassing moments section and I appreciated how the voices throughout the magazine are not condescending.  There is a real good mix of reader submitted content and adult written articles and all are well written.

A couple things really stood out to me: 1. There are no blaring ads on every page!  The ads are there but they are very subtle and are very well placed.  2.  The girls on the cover are every day girls.  No fashion models here!  They pick girls from a particular state and have a photo shoot with them in their home state.  Very cool.

The second item I was given to review was one of their Fab Girls Guide books.  I received Fab Girls Guide to Getting Through Tough Times.  This series of books are each a compilation of reader submitted essays pertaining to the topic at hand.  I really enjoyed reading this book and I feel every mom should have it on hand for those "just in case" moments.  In this book, the "tough times" are as "routine" as your friend doesn't like you anymore to being robbed at gunpoint and everything in between.  What is most important about this book (and the magazine itself) is that it truly helps the girl reading it to see that they are not alone.  To give a young girl the gift of security and peace of mind is truly a gift from the heart and Discovery Girls strives to do just that.
So now that you have read my GLOWING review of Discovery Girls, you are probably wondering how you can get your own.  Well, you have a couple of ways to do just that!

BUY IT! You can become a subscriber of Discovery Girls Magazine for 1 year (6 issues) for $19.95 or 2 years (12 issues) for $29.95.

WIN IT! A Discovery Girls Prize Package (worth $70!) which includes:
  • complimentary one year subscription ($20 value!)
  • one complete set of the Fab Girls series books ($40 value!)
  • special collector's edition of the past 10 years of Discovery Girls ($10 value!) avail. June 28th!

MANDATORY ENTRY: Visit Discovery Girls' website and have a look around.  What do you like about this magazine and/or its online features?  Please Leave Your E-mail Address with this comment!

EXTRA ENTRIES: To be done only after answering the above question!
  1. Like Discovery Girls on Facebook (leave your Facebook name).
  2. Follow Discovery Girls on twitter (leave twitter name).
  3. Follow Queen of the Snot Princesses on Google Friend Connect (side bar -- click Follow) (leave GFC name in comments).
  4. Follow me on twitter and tweet: "Do you have a tween in your life? Enter to #win @DGMagazine Prize Package #Giveaway (worth $70!)"  Be sure to leave your link in the comments.  You may tweet only ONCE.
This giveaway is offered to US and CANADA 18 + and will end on June 28th 11:59pm CST.  Winner will be chosen through   Winner will be notified via e-mail.  If they fail to respond within 48 hours, then a new winner will be picked.  Please leave your e-mail address with your comments so that I may contact you if you win.  I will not share your e-mail address with anyone, it is strictly for me to notify you of your winnings.  GOOD LUCK!
Full Disclosure:  I received the above items free of charge from Discovery Girls, but was in no way instructed to give a positive review.  My reaction is mine and mine alone.  You may find you like the magazine differently and that is okay by me.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Future's So Bright....

(I Gotta Wear Shades)

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Some Chicagoland Deals for Families

Both FamilyFinds and Groupon have some terrific deals posted today that I thought I would share.

From FamilyFinds:

Half-Off Kids HairCuts at Snippets Mini-Cuts!  For $10 bucks you can get your little one a new 'do for what would normally cost you twenty.  They have locations at Yorktown Mall in Lombard, Clyborn and Southport Avenues in Chicago and Northbrook Court in Northbrook.

From Groupon:

Half-Off Admission to Chicago History Museum!  For 7 dollars you can soak in all the history of Chicago for what would normally cost you 14!  You can purchase up to 10 tickets.  Think how much you would save (both your sanity and your money) with this deal over the summer months when your kids are asking the proverbial "what's to do?  I'm bored!"

Save $20 at Indiana Beach Amusement Resort!  Located in Monticello, Indiana.  For $19 (normally $39.95!)  you can enjoy the rides and water park at this fun resort.  Another idea to fill up the upcoming summer months...

Have fun saving some money!

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links.  I receive a small kickback if you participate in these deals through me.  Thanks!

We Like to Party Party (and do other things in STL)

Went to St. Louis area over the long weekend to visit J's side of the family and to celebrate C's birthday with them....
Smiles with MaGa
Didn't Have to Flash to Get These Beads
13 Year Cycle of Cicadas = Lots of Noise
Dirt appropriate.
Presents! With some sisterly help. 
Watching Pop Race
Who says little girls can't play with cars?