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Monday, August 31, 2009

Kennedy's Korner Review + Discount + Giveaway



"In this lifetime there is one childhood...let them dream..."

Kennedy's Korner is the perfect place to let your daughter do just that!
You will find Tutu's that any girl would die to have!

There are so many beautiful tutu's I couldn't decide which to show you!

Isn't this Mermaid Tutu just darling?!


Kennedy's Korner came about as an outlet for Marie, the woman behind it all, to express the beauty of childhood and dreams, and to create treasures for her new grand daughter, what a lucky girl! Marie swears she has no artistic ability, but I'd say she is doing a pretty good job faking it!

Here is another one of my favorites, the Princess Thumbelina Tutu


All the items at Kennedy's Korner are great for everyday princess wear or dress-up, picture sittings, birthdays, and weddings. All tutus are hand sewn, and everything is created with great care and attention to detail.

Kennedy's Korner also offers Pom Pom wands to complete the ensemble! 10 yards of tulle are used for each pom pom wand--they are very full and fluffy--created to last!

My daughter loved twirling hers around, hitting it on the ground (haha) and just carrying it around with her. And it looked brand new when she finally put it down.


Out of the generosity of Marie's heart she is offering Organic Mamas reader 10% off any order for one week! (Code: OMamaBlog10)

AND she is giving away one Pom Pom wand of choice to one winner!


To enter into this great giveaway: (only open to U.S. residents)

You must be a follower of this blog and visit Kennedy's Korner and leave a comment here telling me what you love!

Additional entries:

(please leave a comment per additional entry telling me you did so)
1. Add my blog button to your blog/website (leave url)
2. Add my Sweety Baby button to your blog/website (leave url)
3. Subscribe via email to my blog.
4. Become a follower on twitter and tweet about this giveaway (leave username)
5. Blog about this giveaway (leave url)
6. Purchase something from Kennedy's Korner (5 extra entries, leave 5 additional comments telling me what you purchased)


The winner will be chosen at random Tuesday, September 8th!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Maria Montessori - The Beginning

I am on a Montessori kick right now :) I have started doing many montessori activities with my 19-month old daughter and she has responded so well that I really have a desire to plunge into this method of teaching as much as I can.

For those of you who may be new to the Montessori method I would like to give a brief introduction to Maria Montessori's philosophy for my first post on Montessori.

I briefly quoted the main ideas behind the philosophy below, as read in Teaching Montessori in the Home by Elizabeth G. Hainstock.

"Maria Montessori believed that education begins at birth and that the first few years of life, being the most formative, are the most important, physically and mentally.

Proper learning methods in the years from birth to six years will largely determine the kind of adult the child will become.

Montessori felt that in these early years a child has a what she referred to as "sensitive periods", during which time he is particularly receptive to certain stimuli. If parents are aware of these periods, much can be done to help the child at the right time.

Sensitive Periods

birth- 3 yrs Absorbent mind, Sensory experiences

1 1/2 - 3 yrs Language Development

1 1/2 - 4 yrs Coordination & muscle development

2-4 yrs Refinement of movement, concern with truth & reality,

Aware of order sequence in time & Space

2 1/2- 6 yrs Sensory refinement

3-6 yrs Susceptibility to adult influence

3 1/2-4 1/2 yrs Writing

4- 4 1/2 yrs Tactile sense

4 1/2-5 1/2 yrs Reading

Education need not be imposed on the child; given a learning environment he will be free to act and to develop himself along the lines of his own inner direction.

Children have a natural desire to learn and work, along with a strong willingness to please. Children would rather learn than simply be entertained or amused."

In my following posts I plan on describing what the desired montessori environment would look like, what materials would be used and activities to guide your children through the sensitive periods.

I am excited about sharing this with you so please let me know what you think! :)



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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

BPA & Phthalate Free Bath Toys

Since doing research on the harm certain chemicals in plastic can do to your children I have been surveying my daughters toys to weed out the unsafe ones.


The other day while she was taking a bath I realized that EVERY toy she was playing with probably contained these harmful chemicals. And she was bathing in them for at least 10 minutes every night, yikes!


So of course I took off on my internet search for safe bath toys. And was very happy to find many companies that offer BPA & Phthalate free bath toys.


Boon Inc. has a line of bath toys that are all perfectly safe for your little ones to bath in. I ordered the Designer toys & scrubbies for my daughter.


"This collection of fifteen bath appliqu├ęs, three balls, and two mini-scrubbies makes bath time a creative and playful experience. These designer toys do not absorb water, reducing mold and mildew. Their contemporary colors and funky forms look great in the modern bath. The mini-scrubbies are designed to fit little hands perfectly."

My daughter has so much fun with these!

I also found this site which gives you a guide to all the companies that make bath toys free of harmful chemicals.


Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Everday Diamonds Review + Giveaway

Everyday Diamonds is a darling etsy shop is run by two sisters who are extremely talented and have a flair for fashion!

Bracelets, Purses, Flower accessories and Necklaces (which are offered with free shipping right now!) are the diamonds you will find at Everyday Diamonds. Let's take a look!


This Green Glimpse bracelet is so unique and green (in two senses, haha).


Natural fiber envelopes this bracelet. Leafy green and natural hemp are an indigenous combination leaving everyone interested in your find!



Brighten your day with this Mini Lemon Drop Purse

The purses are handmade, handstitched and come wrapped ready to give as a gift or to unwrap as a present to yourself!


Next, I LOVE these flower accessories offered by Everyday Diamonds, I am definitely thinking these would make great Christmas presents!

This Juliet Flower Brooch or hair clip might be my favorite....



Or maybe this Vintage Love Organza Flower is my favorite....I can't decide!





Now for what you've been waiting for! Everyday Diamonds is generously offering 10% off your purchase for the next week with the coupon code OMamaBlog10.

AND Everyday Diamonds is giving away this Mini Green Lizard Purse to one of you!
To enter into this great giveaway: (only open to U.S. residents)

You must be a follower of this blog and visit Everyday Diamonds and leave a comment here telling me what you love!

Additional entries:

(please leave a comment per additional entry telling me you did so)
1. Add my blog button to your blog/website (leave url)
2. Add my Sweety Baby button to your blog/website (leave url)
3. Subscribe via email to my blog.
4. Become a follower on twitter and tweet about this giveaway (leave username)
5. Blog about this giveaway (leave url)
6. Purchase something from Everyday Diamonds (5 extra entries, leave 5 additional comments telling me what you purchased)

The winner will be chosen at random Wednesday, September 2nd!



Monday, August 24, 2009

Rick Rack Queen Review + Giveaway!

I love everything that is reusable, for so many reasons.
Cheaper for me in the long run.
Better for the environment.
And much more stylish.....

Especially if you are using Rick Rack Queen's bags.

School has started or will start soon!

Get a bag that will last and one that will stand out in the crowd.
This blue camo bag is the coolest thing....



Rick Rack Queen's lunch bags are made with oilcloth and are machine sewn. They have a side pocket for your snack money, and a velcro closure. They are quite roomy with dimensions of appr. 8" wide x 5.5"deep x 10" tall when rolled down.

And of course you will need reusable snack bags to go with your luch bag!

These truly have been a blessing in my household! With a little one we go through SO many plastic bags for snacks on the go. Now with these my mind is at ease. They have velcro closure and come clean with warm soapy water.

Think of how much money you'll save using these instead of ziplocs!



I received one of these Dish Bottle Aprons from Rick Rack Queen the other day. How adorable! What a perfect way to brighten up your sink area!




Now for the giveaway!
One reader will win a basic $10 lunch bag or set of three snack bags of their choice!


To enter into this great giveaway:

You must be a follower of this blog and visit Rick Rack Queen and leave a comment here telling me what you love!

Additional entries:
(please leave a comment per additional entry telling me you did so)

1. Add my blog button to your blog/website (leave url)
2. Add my Sweety Baby button to your blog/website (leave url)
3. Subscribe via email to my blog.
4. Become a follower on twitter and tweet about this giveaway (leave username)
5. Blog about this giveaway (leave url)
6. Purchase something from Rick Rack Queen (5 extra entries, leave 5 additional comments telling me what you purchased)

The winner will be chosen at random Tuesday September 1st! (Only open to U.S. residents)

Friday, August 21, 2009

Montessori for Toddlers

Let's just say I am hooked on Montessori.

I actually went to a montessori school for two years when I was younger, but don't really remember much about it.



The next time Montessori was brought to my attention was for potty training. I started to put the methods for potting training in practice a couple months ago. My daughter is now 19 months and she has already gone on the potty numerous times, yay! I really want to go full out with the training but I have to find a week where I don't have to go anywhere (which is going to be practically impossible).


I recently starting researching Montessori for toddlers and am loving what I am learning!

I plan on doing a series of posts on it in the next few weeks so stay tuned! I know you will just LOVE these practices.


I will also be having giveaways geared toward the montessori philosophy as well, so get excited!!!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Kid Basix Giveaway Winner is....

Marchelle!

"I totally love that there is a kid-friendly stainless steel cup out there! I had heard about all the crazy chemical warnings connected to the use of plastic water bottles, and knew that my options were limited to the expensive stainless steel thermos styles, but that still meant that I'd have to transfer the contents to a bottle or sippy cup. Checked out Kid Basik, and am excited that there's now one problem solved! I totally would love to have the blue one!"

Congratulations!

For those who didn't win, visit Kid Basix to find out where you can buy one online or in-store, you won't regret it!

Monday, August 17, 2009

A daily serving of spinach your kids will LOVE!

My daughter loves applesauce.

The sugar-free all-natural kind that comes in different flavors.

Bluberry. Strawberry. Pomegranate.

So why not throw spinach in there? :)


Since my daughter has not eaten any type of vegetable in like, oh, five months!

I thought it was time to work a little magic.....


Enter food processor, plain applesauce, frozen bluberries and fresh spinach!


The result?


The best tasting and healthiest applesauce you (oh yeah and your kids) will ever eat.

Packed full with Vitamin A, Folic Acid and tons of antioxidants.


After this spoonful she kept asking for more :)




When she was through with her helping she had bits of green all over her face.

He he he, boy am I sneaky. :)


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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Kid Basix Review + Giveaway - Stainless Steel BPA & Phthalate Free Sippy Cup

I am extremely excited about this review and giveaway and I know you will be too. After reading my last two posts on the dangers of certain chemicals in plastics, namely BPA and Phthalates, I am thrilled to tell you about Kid Basix! I am going to give you an overview of their items and also share my personal experience with The Safe Sippy2™ .

Kid Basix offers bottles, sippy/straw cups, and water bottles with one simple goal in mind: Clean in, Clean out. As a mother that sounds like my kind of motto!


All of Kid Basix's items are free of BPA and other harmful chemicals present in many plastic bottles.

Now what is so special about stainless steel? Let's have them tell you in their own words:

"Why go stainless when so many BPA-free plastic bottles are available now? We can give you 300 billion reasons. That’s the approximate number of plastic water bottles discarded around the world every year. Enough to power 12 million cars for an entire year. And that’s just the water bottles! It doesn’t include all the plastic bottles used for sodas, sports drinks, fruit juices and the like. All told, the plastic bottles we throw away each year would reach to the moon and back – 1500 times. So using reusable stainless steel bottles makes sense on every level: personal, local and global."


Bret, the founder of Kid Basix, personally sent me The Safe Sippy2™ to try for my daughter. This is the world's first and only 2-in-1 sippy to straw bottle. When I received it in the mail I was immediately in love with the look, feel and versatility of this product. But of course the real test was on my daughter. She has never mastered the straw concept. I have used a traditional sippy cup with her from day one. But I thought this fancy cup would be up for the challenge.


When I first gave her the cup, she immediately loved it! She didn't let go of it for an hour! She loved the handles that perfectly fit in her chubby little hands, and of course the color and texture of the cup helped too. It took her a couple times to really get the hang of drinking from the cup since the spout is shaped differently from the sippy cups she was used to, but she was soon a pro. AND I am proud to say she was drinking from the cup using the straw method within 5 minutes, I was astonished!


The Safe Sippy2™ comes with a straw & straw adaptor, travel plug and sippy plug. Also included is a dust cap which comes in handy when you have to throw the cup in your purse. I haven't had to use the travel plug yet since it doesn't leak at all with the sippy plug in.




Overall I would give this item 5 stars! And I am REALLY looking forward to trying one of Kid Basix's Safe Sporter Water bottles.


Now for what you've been waiting for......Kid Basix is giving away one free Safe Sippy 2 to one of you!


To enter into this great giveaway: (Only open to U.S. Residents)

You must be a follower of this blog and visit Kid Basix and leave a comment here telling me what you love most about the Safe Sippy 2 and what color you would choose!


Additional entries:

(please leave a comment per additional entry telling me you did so)
1. Add my blog button to your blog/website (leave url)
2. Add my Sweety Baby button to your blog/website (leave url)
3. Subscribe via email to my blog.
4. Become a follower on twitter and tweet about this giveaway (leave username)
5. Blog about this giveaway (leave url)
6. Purchase something from Kid Basix (5 extra entries, leave 5 additional comments telling me what you purchased)

The winner will be chosen at random Wednesday August 19th!


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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Why plastics can harm your children - Part 2 - Phthalates

So I'm back again to tell you more about the things that could be harmful for your children :) Sounds like a great read right? Although it may not be FUN to read about these things, I consider it my duty to stay educated.

So here goes.

Phthalates are another harmful substance in plastics, especially for chilren, including those in utero.

Phthalates are a family of chemical compounds that are used to stabilize fragrances and increase the flexibility of plastics. They have been used in plastics since the 1930's and it's only recently that concerns have been raised. Phthalates are under attack by many environmental organizations who claim that there is strong evidence that these chemicals cause reproductive defects and early-onset of puberty in children.



Phthalates are a hormone-altering chemical. Baby powders, oils, lotions, shampoos and other products with phthalate additives, are linked to endocrine and reproductive system problems. Babies who are cared for with phthalate-laced products and cosmetics show developmental problems, especially in reproductive development of male children.


If you wish to error on the side of caution, how do you avoid phthalates? In terms of food and beverage containers and children's toys you should avoid any soft PVC. You can identify PVC on containers by examining the recycling triangle that appears on the bottom of most containers. PVC has a number 3 in the triangle. I was so happy to learn this great tip!



Otherwise only buy products that say Phthalate free on them.



Stay tuned for a BPA, Phthalate free giveaway later in the week! You will absolutely love this item for your child! (I do!)

Whimsical Rooms Giveaway Winner is...

Anne, who said:

"I can't decide between girl or boy, my fav girl is M2M POTTERY BARN KIDS PENELOPE HAND PAINTED TISSUE HOLDER, my fav boy is WHIMSICAL PATTERNS PERSONALIZED TISSUE HOLDER"

Congrats! You have until Thursday the 13th to claim your prize!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Why plastics can harm your children - Part 1 - BPA

If you haven't heard the hype over BPA and phthlates in plastics, I hope to give a brief overview in a two part post.

I feel sometimes like I just want to cover my ears about all that is bad for us, but when it comes to my own child I feel I have a responsibility to know the truth and really try to protect my daughter from all that is harmful.

This post will just be a brief overview pointing you to broader resources since there is SO much info out there on the dangers of BPA. Although it may seem a little technical at times, believe me it is WORTH READING.

Okay here we go.


"Bisphenol A (BPA) is a chemical building block that is used primarily to make polycarbonate plastic and epoxy resins. Polycarbonate plastic is a lightweight, high-performance plastic that possesses a unique balance of toughness, optical clarity, high heat resistance, and excellent electrical resistance. Because of these attributes, polycarbonate is used in a wide variety of common products including digital media (e.g., CDs, DVDs), electrical and electronic equipment, automobiles, sports safety equipment, reusable food and drink containers , and many other products."







"BPA is also used in the production of epoxy resins....Cured epoxy resins are inert materials used as protective liners in metal cans to maintain the quality of canned foods and beverages..." (referenced here)



The main problems comes about because BPA actually leaches out of the plastic and into our food, drinks, etc.


What comes about is various health problems and dangers especially for children.

Here are some excellent references to help you understand the dangers more fully:

U.S. News and world report

U.S. News and world report
Global Life

Enviromental Working Group


Thankfully there are a variety of products out there that are free of these harmful chemicals. AND I will be reviewing an EXCELLENT sippy cup for children in the next week or so and offering a giveaway to all of you. So don't go out and buy new cups yet!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Gifts Define Review + Discount


I am always so thrilled when I find a unique, quality shop on Etsy.
Gifts Define is no exception!

Gifts Define has been making gifts for three years and you can see why!
Her items are so intricate and beautiful.

I love the Tree Story Wall Art.


So perfect for a child's room.


This Love Birds Wall Art Banner is SO sweet!!




Check out these little Personalized Message Birds! So darling!





Gifts Define is generously giving Organic Mamas Blog readers a 10% discount for one week! Just mention Organic Mamas in the note to seller box at checkout and the discount will be reimbursed.

Note: Gifts Define's creative & functional handmade products are solely designed for decorative purposes only. The products are NOT recommended as playing toys for babies/toddlers (not to be applied as teething toys/ rattle toys). They only use high quality real wool felt from Europe with OEKO-Tex 100 Standard Certification. This specific certification guarantees that their wool felt is safe and 100% free of harmful toxic chemical or lead.

Lily Knitting Giveaway Winner

is Natalie who said...
"I love the Crocheted Baby Ladybug Beanie"

Congratulations! You entered the giveaway just in time!

Please email jflborn@gmail.com with your address by Saturday August 8th.

Thanks to all who participated!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Sweety Baby Dolls!!

Sweety Baby Dolls are now available in my Etsy shop!!!


Three were posted yesterday and only two are left...it looks like I've got a lot of sewing ahead of me :)

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Whimsical Rooms Review + Discount + Giveaway


If you are looking for something unique to add that last touch to your childs room or if you are deciding on a theme this is the shop you HAVE to see! Whimsical Rooms has it all from hanging letters to waste baskets, picture frames to step stools. And all of it can be customized for your child!

Look at these wall letters...they are such a work of art!




And this has to be the cutest trash basket I've ever seen....
almost too cute to throw trash in!





You must look around Whimsical Rooms, it is such a unique shop!

And now what you have all been waiting for....

Whimsical Rooms is offering 10% off your order!
Coupon code: OMama10

AND she is also giving away one tissue box holder to one reader!!


This is the one I would pick...






To enter into this great giveaway:

You must be a follower of this blog and visit Whimsical Rooms and leave a comment here telling me what you love and which tissue box holder you would choose!


Additional entries:
(please leave a comment per additional entry telling me you did so)

1. Add my blog button to your blog/website (leave url)
2. Add my Sweety Baby button to your blog/website (leave url)
3. Subscribe via email to my blog.
4. Become a follower on twitter and tweet about this giveaway (leave username)
5. Blog about this giveaway (leave url)
6. Purchase something from Whimsical Rooms (5 extra entries, leave 5 additional comments telling me what you purchased)


The winner will be chosen at random Tuesday August 11th!

Besoz Giveaway Winner!

...is the Yatzecks!!!!

Please email jflborn@gmail.com to claim your prize by August 7th!

Thanks to all for participating!