Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Toddler Favourite - Colour Wonder

Jillian has been really helping me out, sending me all of her favourites, at such a busy time of the school year when I can't even find one free minute - here is another one of her favourites:

A great product that allows your toddler to use "markers" and colour but doesn't have the mess of a typical marker. Colour wonder markers can only colour on the special colour wonder colouring sheets---no more markers on my couch, child's face and clothing and my dog will never ever ever again be coloured with traditional markers-Yippee! My children, ages 1.5, 3 and 5 all love to use the colour wonder--and now they have new colour wonders that allow your child to "paint" or to colour with sparkles.

Cool Jillian - H loves to colour with pens, markers, anything that he can find - so these would be perfect for him! By the way, where did you get them from?

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Favourite Books - First Words with Flash Cards

Just last week I picked H up this new book from one of the sellers that leaves books in the staffroom at work. Right away I liked it as it had many first words that he would need to know and also that it was like a puzzle as many of the pictures popped out for matching.

The book is a HIT! He loves it and we have spent a lot of time matching the pieces to their correct spot in the book. In just a few weeks he has learned many new words and is able to match the pieces all on his own.

The summary for the books says:
Containing 20 shaped flash cards that fit into the corresponding space on the page, this book encourages word and picture recognition, and hand-eye coordination. The flash cards can also be used all by themselves. 20 shaped flash cards to fit into the corresponding space on the page Cards can also be used independently. Encourages work and picture recognition, and hand-eye coordination.

I would highly recommend this book - I can see that it will be hours of fun for us! It sells at Chapters for about $12.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Favourite Website -

Another favourite of Jillian's is

"This website is for the toddler but it is great to introduce the child to the alphabet. Between this website and Leapfrog "letter Factory" movie my DD's had learned the entire alphabet, and its sounds by the time they were 2. My DD's may have played on the website once or twice a week but enjoyed the site so much and learned quickly from it."

Thanks Jillian, can't wait to show it to Hudson!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Summer Favourites - Seasons UV Clothing

As I was reading through my Today's Parent the other night, during my ten minutes of free time, I came across an article/advertisement for UPF (ultraviolet protection factor) clothing. I am always looking for ways to protect H from the sun as a) he is very fair skinned like his mama b) he loves to be outside for most of the day and c) we have a pool. So far, I have picked him up a few shirts that are sun protective from Bonnie Togs and Zehrs (Joe Fresh). (Just so you know, the rash guard shirts from Old Navy are not UVA or UVB protective.)

The article in TP states that their clothing, "...blocks harmful UV rays and has designs that darken as the sun strengthens, reminding parents to reapply sunscreen..." They make hats, swimsuits, shorts, shirts and more - which come in fun colours and designs. (I especially like the Superman line for boys pictured above)

Now that I have had a chance to check out their website, I also realize that I have seen their products before - on one of my mommy deals websites. So if you are interested in getting one of these items, you can either check out their website at or wait patiently for them to go on half price again on one of those websites.

I cannot say that this is one of my faves, but it is definitely a great idea!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Bathtime Favourites - Safety First Bath Pal Thermometer

I couldn't give H a bath without this fave! It is a duck thermometer that floats in your tub. It has a temperature strip on it that ranges from 29 to 38 degrees and as long as the water temp shows up on the strip it is good for baby.

We tend to fill the tub with water closer to the warmer end of the strip, but when H was smaller we went cooler.

I like that it is kind of a no-brainer, as long as I see a temperature show up on the strip I feel safe that the water is good for H. Of course, I always put my hand in to test it, but with this thermometer you don't have to worry about being exact.

We also received a duck that just told you if the water was too hot or cold - but I like having an exact temperature and the scale to see where that temperature fits.

I can see myself using this for many years to come! Pick one up at Toys R Us for just $5.99.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Other Favourites - Mabel's Labels

Maureen sent me this favourite awhile ago, it just got lost in the shuffle - sorry Maureen! Another one of her favourites are Mabel's Labels.

They are personalized labels that you can stick just about anywhere. They offer baby labels, iron-on labels, sticky labels, allergy labels, waterproof labels, clothing labels, shoe labels, uniform labels and many more! You need a label? They've got it!

One really neat label they offer is an allergy label that you can put on food containers and travel gear to remind daycare providers and others of your child's allergy.

The sticky labels are dishwasher and microwave safe and the iron-ons are washer and dryer safe.

A neat option they offer are combo packs where you can get a variety of labels (sticky, shoe, bag tags, iron ons, tag mates etc.) which are ideal for school or camp supplies.

This company is Canadian and actually a friend of Maureen's.

Check out their site and all of their cool options at

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Toddler Favourite - Leapfrog "Letter Factory" movie

Jillian has sent me tons of her faves - thanks for the support Jillian! Here is another:

"Leapfrog "Letter Factory" move - Love it!!!! We were given this movie when DD#1 turned one and I am so thankful. DD only watched it once or twice a week but learned the letters and sounds by the time DD was two. It has a catchy song that reviews the sounds. The same song is used in the Leap Frog Letter Fridge Magnet--which is a great toy as well to go along with the movie."

Cool Jillian - we have the Leapfrog Letter Fridge Magnet and the Wash and Go Vehicle Magnet Set and H loves both of them. We have one on the fridge and the other on the dishwasher so when we are cooking there is plenty there to entertain him. He also loves the songs and stops and dances in the kitchen. I will have to check out the movie - H really isn't into TV yet - but you never know!

Safety Favourites - Britax Marathon Car Seat

Chris shares another favourite of hers, the Britax Marathon Car Seat.

"...every morning that I strap T in, I think I have to tell Erin this is a huge favourite. Easy to install, T loves it, it fits in the smaller car well, love it."

While doing some research I learned that it:
-can be rear or forward facing
-is side impact tested
-has a five point harness
-has a 65 lb weight capacity
plus a list of 20 other things

It comes in about 14 different fabrics and it looks really comfy. A lot of reviews are out there about this car seat and it comes highly recommended. I found it at Toys R Us for $299, but this would be the only car seat that you would need. Check out its reviews at the Toys R Us website!

Thanks Chris!

Purchasing a car seat is a stressful job...what is your favourite car seat?

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Favourite Books - Sandra Boynton

Jillian also shares one of her favourite authors, Sandra Boynton:

", love love her!!! We love reading all of her books but our #1 favourite is "Pajama Time". It has been a bedtime favourite since C was approx 6 months old and was read to each of our children. Boynton typically writes her books with some rhyme and song in it which instantly attracts the child.
Another Boynton favourite is "Moo Baa La La". I received this book when C was born and we read several times a week if not daily. It teaches animal names and their sounds. Our dog will even join in with a mixture of barking/howling when it talks about the dog--hilarious.
And I can't forget to introduce you to "The Belly Button Book". What can I say other than "Belly belly button you're oh so fine...oooh, belly belly button I'm so happy you're mine!" We love our bee-bo's."

Thanks Jillian, you are too funny! We have a few of her books too! I love the rhyme in them!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Favourite Website - Skin Deep

Kim shares a website that she has just come across, Skin Deep:

"You type in the product that you use and it will tell you what toxins are in it. Interesting and scary."

I visited this website this evening to give it a try. It is from the same company that the sunscreen checker came from - Environmental Working Group. You can look up EVERYTHING - all types of makeup, skin care, hair care, nails, sun screen, etc. My mom and I typed in a few things that we use and were suprised that some of them were medium hazard. It seems the bad ingredient that we kept seeing was this Benzyl Alcohol... guess we will have to do some research on this.

Check it out at:

Thanks Kim! I will be spending quite a bit of time on this site!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Just For Moms - Munchkin Baby Sling

Jillian shares:

"I was given a reversible wrap when I had DS and it was the best gift ever!! DS was my third child and the idea of managing a newborn, an active 2 year old and a 4 year old SCARED me! I didn't have enough hands--3 kids and 2 hands-I was bound to lose a child. So when my mother gave me this wrap I was delighted. The wrap can hold a child in 5 different positions depending on the age of the child. So I would have DS sleep in this sling when he was a newborn while I made meals, vacuumed, played with my other children. I even exercised while he was in the wrap sleeping! When DS grew and wanted to look around I changed his position in the wrap and he was able to sit against me and look out at the world while still snug and tight against me. At 6months+ I was able to put DS on my hip as a third position and now even at 18months I still put him in the wrap on my hip. I tend to keep the wrap in my car now so that when I need to run in somewhere and don't want to take the stroller I quickly put DS in the wrap and I don't need to worry about chasing after an active toddler and I have both hands to grab items, take out money or hold onto the hands of the other two children.
The wrap is simple to use and very comfortable. I can carry around 30lbs on my hip for quite some time without feeling any discomfort. It is also available in a SWIMMING version--amazing as baby can be on your hip splashing securely in the water and you still have both hands free to help other children in the water.
A Must have!"

Thanks Jillian, I can't wait to post all of your favourites!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Favourite Toys - iPlay Cool Tools Activity Set

This tool set has been a favourite of H's since he was about 10 months old and he still loves to play with it. At first he would just hammer the nails and turn the gears to hear the music it plays. Now, he tries to use the screwdriver and plays with the shape sorter. This toy is more than just a tool set - it is a learning tool as well! The nails and some of the screws make noise when you move them, the shape sorter says the name of the shape when you place it in the correct spot and the drill sounds somewhat like a real drill. It also folds up neatly and snaps shut which makes it easy to travel with. The only drawback is that it did not come with the white plastic mould that holds the tools, but we just throw them in and close it up - no big deal. If you are looking for a cool tool set for your little one I would highly suggest this one. My parents bought it for him up north, but I have seen it in those tiny toy stores in the mall. I also found it online at

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Other Favourites - OxiClean Baby

As I was doing H's laundry yesterday, I thought of another one of my favourites, OxiClean Baby. A girlfriend of mine suggested it to me a while back, but I wasn't totally convinced about it until recently. I love that it comes in a spray bottle - so just before I throw his clothes in the washing machine I give the dirty areas a quick spray and voila - his clothes come out looking new! No scrubbing, no presoaking - just spray and wash. It works even on clothes that have been sitting dirty in his hamper for almost a week.

Pick up a bottle and give it a try! Or let us know what your laundry tricks are!

Monday, June 7, 2010

First Year Favourites - Teethers

H is getting his second molar - which made me think of the teethers that we tried with him. I can't really say that he preferred one over the other or if he even liked any of them, but he did try chewing on the ones below.

Here are a few that we tried:

1. Sophie - he chewed on Sophie a bit, but not like some of my friends kids. H liked squeaking her more than biting on her. Sophie is a good alternative though as she is made from a safe plastic.
2. Nuby Bug-a-Loop - again he chewed on this a bit, but it was more of a toy for him, rather than a teether. Each bug had a different texture to it.
3. Razberry - he liked this one but not until he was a bit older - probably because it was a bit too big for his mouth. It acts like a soother, but has bumps on it for teething.
4. First Years Massaging Action Teether - again he liked this one, but not until he was a bit older. This one vibrates when they bite down on it. H was afraid of the pulsing action at first, but later on he seemed to like it.

We also tried the Nuby Keys that you put in the freezer, but then learned that they had been recalled... I wouldn't trust any liquid filled teether as you never know exactly what is inside of it.

All babies are different. H wasn't one for putting stuff in his mouth, he didn't even really want to take a soother until he was 3 months and then I really had to push it (we were flying home and I thought it would help his ears).

Do you have a favourite teether - why not share it with us?

First Year Favourites - My First Rattle

As I was packing up some of H's baby toys this weekend, I came across his first and favourite baby toy. It was a soft rattle that each bumpy part made a different noise (crinkle, squeak, squish, etc.) This was the first toy that he played with as it was soft and easy to hold and pick up. We took this rattle with us everywhere. He played with it so much that he knew, at a very early age, which bump made which noise and he always went right to the middle one which was his favourite. It was amazing to see him pick it up and turn it until he found the one he wanted. Another nice thing about this toy was that you can throw it in the washing machine. His was in there weekly - I would just put it in a pillow case and throw it in the washer and dryer. (A great feature with all that slobber and formula that ended up on it from being in his mouth constantly).

If your little one is just about ready to play with his/her first toy I highly recommend picking this one up. It also makes a great baby shower gift! You can get it from ToysRUs for just $6.99!

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Summer Favourite - Melissa and Doug Sunny Patch Blossom Bright Srinkler

Thanks Kim for being the first to reply to my request for summer favourites!

She shares that her little A just loves this sprinkler.

I went directly to the Melissa and Doug website and was amazed by all the new toys they have! There is a whole line for Sunny Patch Outdoor Toys - with their bright colours and designs they would attract any little one. When you click on an actual toy you not only get a description and price, but there is also a rating from other buyers (I love when stores have this feature). This particular sprinkler gets a 5 star rating!

The Melissa and Doug site is currently offering free shipping on orders over $75 and they are also hosting a contest where you can win $50 worth of Sunny Patch items

Check out their website at

I also checked out the ToyRUs site, but I could not find the sprinkler on it, but sometimes not everything that they offer in the store is on their website.

Thanks again, Kim!

Summer Favourite - Frozen Yogurt Tubes

With the arrival of the hot weather comes ways to help us cool off. My daycare provider gave me this idea as she does it with her little ones - frozen yogurt tubes. I have yet to try it, but I bet H loves it as he is a yogurt freak! He loves popsicles, so I am sure he must love these! Try it out and let me know what your little ones think!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Safety Favourites - Kids in Danger

Steph shares a neat website:

"I signed up with this organization and now receive email alerts of recalled products and the latest safety information. The founders lost a baby because of a defective crib which was recalled so they are committed to their cause. It is free to join!"

This is a great thing, Steph, with all of the recalls that take place nowadays! I haven't had a chance to check it out yet or sign up, but it is on the top of my list for tomorrow!


Friday, June 4, 2010

Name Your Tune Personallized Gifts

Maureen also shares:

"Also I love Name Your Tune CD's... You can order a CD for your child where every song has their name in it."

When I visited their site I learned that each CD has 14 songs where your child can hear their name sung up to 80 times. A few of the songs are "If You're Happy and You Know It", "Old McDonald" and "The More We Get Together". You can click on each of these songs, on their site, and listen to a preview. They offer 4200 different name options so it is pretty likely that you will be able to find your child's name. The CDs cost $20 each.

I was actually more exited about the other products that they sell on their website. Personalized blankets, banks, books, lunch kits, wall art, placemats and woodcrafts - very cute items! I really liked the wood stools, the name chains and the personalized art! Actually I really like it all and I can see myself going crazy on this website!

Another great Canadian company!

Thanks for sharing this great site, Maureen!!!!!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Wholesome Baby Food

One of my favourite websites when H was just starting to eat solids was
I used this website a lot - not only to see what foods I should start out with, but how to prepare the foods also. Most of the time, I made H's baby food and he really enjoyed it. He HATED any of the jar food that contained meat so in some cases this was my only option. Many people believe that making your own food is too much work, I thought that in the beginning myself, but actually all you need is a steamer, a blender, some ice cube trays and some Ziploc bags. I am NOT one of those moms who believes that your baby should ONLY be eating homemade food - H ate jarred food when we were out visiting or shopping - but I did find many benefits to making my own.

Check out this website, look at the suggestions on how to prepare each food, recipes, age charts and what not - and make a decision that works best for you!

Other helpful food websites that I used in the first year are:

Kid Banz on

Kid Banz are on for today's special on Just two styles left - check them out!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Sunscreen Information

To go along with our sunscreen discussions, Andria has passed on another great blog where the author has written more about sunscreen safety and what not.

If you scroll down to the reader comments there are some more recent ones that list places where you can purchase some of the suggested sunscreens in her blog. One of them is - I will be purchasing some Badger from them tonight (before all of you buy them out!)

**Just placed my order and they are offering FREE SHIPPING right now!!**

Kula Klips Coupon Code

One of my fav online stores is not only having a sale on their adorable belts - but for the month of June they are offering a coupon code - vanmom , that will get you 20% off your online order! Check them out at

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Bedtime Favourites - Halo Sleepsack

When H was little (newborn to about 6 months) he slept in a sleepsack. Being a new mom (and a worried one at that) I knew that I did not want to put ANY blankets in his crib in case he suffocated on them. Many friends recommended using a sleepsack instead - and I loved it for the first 6 months. It was loose enough that I wasn't worried about him getting caught in it, but I liked that it didn't have any sleeves and that it stayed on and ensured that he was warm all night. I went for the HALO brand sleepsack that sells at Toys R Us, why? because it was the first one I saw - but I must say that I was happy with it. It wasn't too thick but a nice thin cotton that was perfect for those summer months. By about 6 months he was moving a bit more and not sleeping very well - so I moved him to a blanket. (That story/favourite to come tomorrow!) So, for those first few months, I highly suggest using one of these, especially if you are a worry wart like me!

Other Favourites - Clippopotamus

Maureen shares that one of her favs is Clippos.

"They have great little hair clips, but I love the blanket clips for the car seat and the ones that make any blanket into a breast feeding cover.. brilliant."

When I checked out their site I saw that they offered some neat ways to use clips: bib clibs (like the Kipiis I wrote about in an earlier entry), pant clips (similar to the Dapper Snappers), and some other neat clips like mitten clips, hair clips and a new one I have never heard of before blanket clips.

I think that the blanket clips are such a great idea... they loop around the handle of your bucket seat and then the blanket attaches to the clip end. It keeps the blanket over your baby! Wish I had one of these for when H was little - he was always kicking his blanket off!

Thanks Maureen, this is another great Canadian company!