Friday, March 21, 2008

Baby Jamz Jammin' Microphone Review and Giveaway

Note: Be sure to enter our two other contests running at this time. Click here (all links will open in a new window so you won't have to leave this page) to enter to win a hardcover copy of The Cure for Modern Life by Lisa Tucker. You also have THREE chances to win in our Horizon Organic Milk Giveaway giveaway. Good luck!

The Baby Jamz toy line has become a HUGE hit, and not surprisingly so. The combination of rhythm and hip hop have brought fun and excitement to regular, old nursery rhymes.

And with the soulful voice of Solange Knowles, sister of Beyonce, singing the songs on these toys, you just can't go wrong. If you missed the first review and giveaway of Baby Jamz, click here to read about this wonderful creation.

The newest toy in the line is the Baby Jamz Jammin' Microphone:

And it is oh so adorable! Included are six fun nursery rhyme tunes:

  1. Bingo
  2. Old MacDonald
  3. Twinkle Twinkle Little Star
  4. Skip to My Lou
  5. This Old Man
  6. Mary Had a Little Lamb
Only this time, the songs have no vocals. That's where your child comes in!

It's like karaoke for little ones! With a push of a button, your child can record his or her voice along to the tracks by singing into the easy-to-grasp microphone. How fun is that?!

There are buttons to speed up or slow down the track, and your child can also either play the tunes by themselves, or record his/her voice by itself. Recommended age is 18 months and up. It really is fun for any age as my 11-year-old and 7-year-old were battling it out to see who could sing the best!

One lucky reader will win a Baby Jamz microphone for the child/children in their life to enjoy! Simply leave a comment here to be entered to win (be sure to leave your email address if there is no way for me to find it). If you link to this contest on your site, you will receive a bonus entry.

Deadline to enter is Friday, April 11 at 11:59 p.m. EST. Winner will be selected at random using on Saturday, April 12, and announced that day. Good luck and happy entering!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Horizon Organic Milk Giveaway

Today (March 16) is the last day of National Brain Awareness Week, and to celebrate, Horizon Organic Milk is sponsoring a fabulous giveaway here!

They have come out with a product that contains DHA, which helps promote healthy brain growth. Horizon Organic® Milk Plus DHA Omega-3 contains 32 mg of DHA, giving us an alternative to the usual sources for DHA (fatty fish and organ meats).

We were given the opportunity to try out the new DHA-enhanced milk and my kids loved it. My son actually said, "This is better than our usual milk!"

Now I know my kids are not only getting their calcium and dairy intake, but that they are also getting the nutrients needed to help brain function, all with safe, organic and wholesome milk.

Want to win a half-gallon carton for you and your family? I will select THREE lucky winners by using Simply leave a comment here to be entered. Due to the Easter holiday and spring break, deadline has been extended to Friday, April 11 at 11:59 p.m. Winner will be selected and announced here on Saturday, April 12. Good luck!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Baby Einstein Winner!

Congratulations to agordon10, who has won a copy of Baby Einstein's "Baby's First Moves" DVD!

Thanks to everyone who entered. Be sure to stay tuned as there are more exciting giveaways coming soon!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Liar's Diary Winner

Congratulations to Susan who has won a copy of The Liar's Diary, the intriguing new book by Patry Francis.

Thanks to those who posted kind words for Patry. There is a great discussion going on over at MotherTalk's Book Club and Salon about the book, and Patry herself is there, so head on over if you'd like to express your support for her as she valiantly battles cancer.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Wishes and Wonders

Have you had a chance to check out my boutique yet? I'm having a sale that ends soon.

$10 off all wall art like this:

$10 off all crocheted baby blankets like this:

And free shipping on all no-slip hair clip sets like this:

If you mention you saw this post, I'll throw in a free gift with your purchase as well. Thanks! :)

Friday, March 7, 2008

Giftventure- Making Gift Giving an Adventure!

Want a fun way to present gifts to your children? Want to add a little more excitement to the whole gift giving process?

There's a brand new way to do just that with the new, creative service Giftventure. This is a fun one! I promise!

Here's a quick breakdown of how it works:
  1. You choose an adventure and character from Giftventure's site.

  2. You tell Giftventure where your hiding place for the gift will be. You will also tell them your child's favorite activity and a local landmark, which will be cleverly placed within the letters your child receives from the character you've chosen. (Note: You do not need to actually have the gifts hiding in the location you choose the entire time. In fact, that can be risky. I didn't place the gifts in our location until the very last minute, lest they happen upon it. Actually, I didn't even BUY the gifts until the last minute.)

  3. Using the information you provide, Giftventure "creates and mails a series of letters and puzzles addressed to the child who must solve the puzzles and follow the clues in the letters to discover the location of your hidden gift."

Through the wonderful group Mom Central, I was given the opportunity to review Giftventure and I was really surprised how excited my kids got. First, I chose Gunther the Dragon as the character for them:

I figured it would appeal to both my son and my daughter. They also have Sophie the Unicorn, Captain Percy the Pirate, Fay the Fairy Princess, and more! Click here to see all of the available characters (including the Easter Bunny).

We chose "The Scrambler's Maze" (for ages 8 to 12) as our adventure:

Since we didn't have any upcoming birthdays or any other gift-related occasions coming up, I decided to just pick up a couple of inexpensive "treasures" for my kids to find using the Giftventure service. Click here for simple and inexpensive ideas that you could use.

I chose "under Dad's sink" as the location and I put "mystery person" as the gift giver just to make it more fun.

The letters arrived all in one large envelope with instructions on how to give them to my kids. (This is how it works when you select "package delivery." With "standard delivery" the letters are each mailed separately to your child.) When they opened and read the first letter, I cannot begin to tell you how excited they were!

The letters detail this fantasy-like story about Cloudstead where the characters live, and Jarvis the elf, where he was last seen, etc. My kids (ages 7 and 11) really got into it!

After reading the first letter:

Natalie, my 7-year-old started looking outside for Jarvis the Elf and told me she thought that maybe he'd been sleeping under the tree in our backyard. She and Matthew (my 11-year-old) then began deciphering the puzzle that came with the first letter:

The answer was one piece of the clue to where the mystery prize was and they were told to keep it safe until the next letter arrived.

They were on pins and needles waiting for that next letter! I had them hidden in my desk drawer, buried under several stacks of papers.

Here's a "this can only happen to me" moment, though. Natalie went searching through my drawer for a pencil and came across the letters!!!! She and Matthew ran upstairs and yelled "YOU'RE Gunther the Dragon!!!" I swear I almost cried, lol.

I sat them down and explained (mostly to Natalie) that I was not Gunther, but I was the mystery gift giver. That made her feel much better. She was back to looking out the windows for signs of Jarvis and wondering what Gunther would tell her next. My son was just as excited too, even though he's not a "believer."

So a word of caution. If you're going to try to be slick like I was and put "mystery person" instead of "mom" down as the gift giver, make sure you find a better hiding place than I did!

They ripped open the second and third letters, which revealed more of the story ("What?! Jarvis is innocent?" Natalie yelled in shock at the end of the third one).

They decoded the clue in the second letter and then put it all together to get the answer as to where the treasure was hidden:

These puzzles and codes are ADORABLE! They are so cute and fun and my kids had a blast. In the end, they found their gifts "under Dad's sink" and are now begging me to do this again for them on their birthdays.

The adventures are geared toward different age levels, so if your kids are a little younger, or a little older, there's something to be found for them.

With Easter fast approaching, you could take advantage of the fun Easter Bunny Adventure. All with the help of the adorable Easter Bunny character:

And to celebrate the holiday, Giftventure is offering 10% off the list price ($19.95)!! Simply enter promo code: momcentral If you sign up by March 14, you will get reduced shipping as well, and your Giftventure will arrive in time for Easter.

Happy adventures! :)

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Baby Einstein Review and Giveaway

For over 10 years, Disney's Baby Einstein has been providing endless ways to entertain and educate little ones. Now, the company is reaching out to parents in an attempt to involve them more in their baby's development in their new Parent-Child Interaction campaign.

I had the chance to review one of their new DVD's that is aimed at helping parents enjoy such interaction. Baby's First Moves - Get Up and Go! is a lively video that "celebrates babies' discoveries of movement" and "encourages use of developing motor skills."

The video features mini-skits of puppets, animals, babies and their parents all demonstrating movements such as crawling, reaching and playing peek-a-boo. Parents can copy the movements with their babies along with the video, and their babies can learn language skills as a friendly voice repeats the name of each movement.

There is a special bonus featuring Pilates instructor Michelle Dozois, one of many special features on the DVD. You and your baby will love the cheery, colorful images, but most of all, you'll have a blast moving together.

I have one copy of Baby Einstein's Baby's First Moves for one lucky reader! Simply leave a comment here on this post by 11:59 EST, Monday, March 17 to be entered. One entry per person. Winner will be chosen at random and announced on Tuesday, March 18. Contest open to U.S. and Canadian residents only. Good luck!

Body Surfing Winner

Thanks to everyone who entered the contest to win a copy of Body Surfing by Anita Shreve! I really enjoyed reading your comments and wanted to thank those of you who offered kind words on my review.

And the winner is.....Katie, who said:
"I'm always looking for new book titles to check out, and this one looks great. Thanks for the chance to win!"

Congratulations, Katie! I will be contacting you via email about claiming your prize.

Thanks to Hachette Book Group USA for sponsoring this wonderful giveaway!

If you didn't win, don't worry. There are always tons of fun contests going on here, so be sure to keep entering. Good luck!
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