Monday, March 31, 2008

Finishing Touches Put on Baby Celebration LA THE Baby Chic Event of the Year!

Baby Celebration LA…THE Baby chic event of the year promises to break all records for attendance this Spring! This one weekend, one-of-a-kind showcase for stylish moms and trendy tots takes place at the Los Angeles Convention Center Saturday April 12 and Sunday April 13. It’s your one chance to be wowed by over 300 exquisite products, services and entertainment features!

If you want to walk right in to the show when it opens…no lines please…you may wish to purchase tickets online at www.babycelebrationla.com. Then, if you are among the first 100 to enter each day you will receive a Baby Booty Bag filled to the brim with gifted goodies! Oh, and p.s., you should drive to the Los Angeles Convention Center with friends or family and plan to make a whole day of it. (It will take that long to experience all that is there…. from an informative “Safety Panel” to Rachel Coleman from the hit PBS show “Signing Time”.) There’ll be great giveaways…you might win a “Babymoon” getaway for two from “Barefoot & Pregnant” in Sausalito California worth $2000.00…cool! Also vote for your favorite Nursery Design Vignette and your favorite Partyscape…darling!!!...and you could win great gifts…including a $250.00 gift certificate!

Hey, don’t worry about your children…they can play with grandma or daddy at the “Gymboree Play Area while you browse the show. Ok…there are pampering areas for you too mom at several show locations… one sponsored by “The Family Groove”.

Oh please do get a seat early for the show highlights…fashion shows… “Sweet Petite Fashion Treats” and “Celebrate the Bump” Pregnancy Fashion Show designed by Renae Plant founder of [bump] babies …just check the show programs for times…then sit down, put your feet up…have fun!

While you are enjoying the show please remember those less fortunate. You will have an opportunity to help donate 48 car seats in 48 hours to families unable to purchase car seats. Look for the donation location at the Baby2Baby booth… then give to your hearts desire.

Ok, see you at Baby Celebration LA where the ordinary becomes extraordinary and the magic begins when you walk through the door!

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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Flippin' Out Over the Flip (Video, that is)


I'm not exaggerating when I say that every household should have what I recently discovered. My new all time favorite, go everywhere with me accessory, is the Flip Video. I can remember when my parents got our first video camera. The thing was literally the size of a suitcase, it recorded on full size VHS tapes. We thought we were so high tech! Who knew that just a few years later (ok, a few more than a few years later...) there would be a video camera smaller than a wallet with great resolution, that was easy to use and stylish too?

The Flip Video fits in the palm of your hand, it takes two AA batteries (that seem to last forever), turn it on with the slide of a switch, press play and record up to 60 minutes of footage without any tapes! Yes, I said NO TAPES! When you're ready, you can easily load your videos onto the computer with no troubles whatsoever. You literally need NO special computer skills to view and share your videos. Simply "flip" out the connected USB Arm and plug it directly into your computer. The software is built in to the Flip, so when you insert it in to your USB, a screen pops up that allows you to view, organize, edit, and share your videos.

My absolute favorite thing about the Flip is how easy it is to share video clips with friends and family. There is an option to send a "video" card, you simply choose a video clip to send then choose a card design. The Flip automatically converts the video to an "e-mail" that is not a gigantic file and recipients can open it right away with no download time! There are a ton of cards to choose from, Thank You, Congratulations, Birthday, and so many more. The Flip comes in various colors with different features. I recommend the Flip Ultra 2 GB camera. The best resolution, with the longest recording time. You can view all of the specs on the Flip site to decide which camera is best for your family.

My first experience with the Flip was my son's Kindergarten Jog A Thon (see video below and please note that the transfer to blogger made it a little fuzzy, but the original video is crystal clear), I was able to take a clip of him running and then send out a video thank you card to all of his sponsors. Since then, we have been using the Flip daily, whether it's a "Knock Knock" joke to brighten up Dad's day at work, or a quick hello to Grandma, the Flip is truly a joy to have around. You can also, add effects and music to the videos as well as take still shots from the clips for photos!

I am completely serious when I say that everyone needs a Flip. What a great way to keep in contact with friends and family, plus it's easy and fun! You can't go wrong. I've only been using the Flip for 2 weeks, and 3 friends of mine have already purchased them! I'm telling you, it's beyond fantastic.

Visit http://www.flipvideo.com/ and start flipping out for your own Flip!


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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Polka Dot Frogs


If you are looking for the perfect baby gift for an upcoming spring baby shower, you have to check out Polka Dot Frogs! They have a fabulous gift set which includes 2 high quality, over-sized 100% Indian cotton burp cloths and a fabulous diaper clutch for those quick trips to the mall or grocery store! A beautiful gift for any swanky mom! To receive 10% off your order, use coupon code “FROG”.

Visit www.polkadotfrogs.com



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Hint

Have you ever bought flavored water and was overpowered by the sweetness?! If you love the taste of water and just want a touch of flavor, then Hint water is the perfect water for you! It is exactly what it sounds like, a hint of flavor, definitely not overpowering and it still tastes like yummy, refreshing water!

Hint has no sweeteners, preservatives or calories! Located in San Francisco California, Hint produces a swanky line of natural flavored water that is simply water with a splash of natural flavoring. Available in: Mango Grapefruit, Pomegranate Tangerine, Lime, Raspberry Lime, Peppermint, Pear, Tropical Punch, Strawberry Kiwi and Cucumber.

Get a hint and add a little zing to your water at www.drinkhint.com



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Monday, March 24, 2008

Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation


Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF) emerged from the front yard lemonade stand of cancer patient Alexandra “Alex” Scott (1996-2004). At the age of 4, Alex announced that she wanted to hold a lemonade stand to raise money to help find a cure for all children with cancer. Since Alex held that first stand, the Foundation bearing her name has evolved into a national fundraising movement, complete with thousands of volunteers across the country carrying on her legacy of hope. To date, Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation, a registered 501(c)3 charity, has raised more than $18 million towards fulfilling Alex’s dream of finding a cure, funding over 50 research projects nationally. This summer marks the 5th Annual Lemonade Days on June 6, 7 and 8 when volunteers across the country will host lemonade stands simultaneously.

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Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Help A Bunny Out: Olive Kids Easter Place Mat


With Easter right around the corner, the Easter Bunny is busy coloring eggs and filling baskets. Help him figure out who is who this year with personalized Easter place mats from Olive Kids. These adorable place mats come in 4 different "springy" designs, eggs, bunnies, chicks and butterflies. They're all so cute, you'll have a hard time choosing. Ours currently adorn our table, but on Easter Eve, I am going to have the boys put them in the living room so the Easter Bunny will "know" where to put their baskets. My six year old will be thrilled that he will have a logical answer to his yearly question, "How will we know which one is mine?"

Olive Kids has personalized place mats for all seasons, this year my Christmas gift to my nieces was a set of them, one for each holiday. I'm telling you, it was the best reaction to a gift ever. Happy moms, happy kids and they don't take up a lot of space, the perfect gift.

Visit http://www.olivekids.com/ today and personalize your table!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Baby Celebration LA

Call your best friends or moms and plan to spend the entire day at Baby Celebration LA April 12 & 13, 2008! If you went to Baby Celebration LA last year you know that it is a truly magical experience! Guess what? It is even more exciting this year! The word is out and the Los Angeles Convention Center is THE place to be April 12-13…in fact, the first 100 mommies each day will receive a baby booty bag filled with darling gifts! Once inside to head to booth 504 and sign up to win a $2000.00 “Baby Moon” vacation from Barefoot & Pregnant Spa! The doors open Saturday at 10:00am and Sunday at 11:00am!


If you watch PBS you’ll want to see Rachel Coleman from the Emmy Award winning series “Signing Time!”appearing Saturday & Sunday…this becomes standing room only so get there early! (By the way did you catch Rachel on the “Today Show” last week?) Don’t miss the adorable fashion shows…Sweet Petites Fashion Treats featuring over 35 of the tiniest models ranging from 15 months to 5 years old…. and we also have a fashion show for stylish expectant mommies & post maternity fashions styled by Renae Plant founder of [bump]babies…oh and don’t miss “The Baby Whisper,” Dee Rule -Nanny to the Stars, Julia Roberts & Adam Sandler LOVED her …. you will have the opportunity to learn her “Baby Whisper” techniques so you can get some much needed rest and zzzzzzzzzz’s Dee Rule will be appearing both days!

Vote for your favorite Nursery Design Vignette and enter to win fabulous prizes from Pregnancy Magazine! Planning a party? Vote for your favorite partyscape and be entered to win $250.00 gift certificate towards your next party! Other not to be missed highlights include our “Edible Eco Garden” and “Green Market”, a “Safety Panel” of experts dedicated to keeping kids safe…even their friends from “Seemore’s Playhouse”. Baby Celebration LA features a wide variety of products and services from elegant to truly practical….That are really extraordinary. This is your one chance this year to see this one-of-a-kind show dedicated to expectant mommies & parents with children 0-5 years old…and those that love them of course…don’t miss this one! Visit www.babycelebrationla.com for more information!



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Sunday, March 16, 2008

Easter Baskets are Out, ZipBins are IN!


Call the Easter Bunny! This year I've found a basket replacement that is sure to spice up Easter Giving. The ZipBin by Neat-Oh is a toy chest that is also a toy! Yep, storage and fun in one. The "bins" come in several different themes. Whether you've got a dino lover or a unicorn enthusiast, you'll be sure to find a fit for your little one. The bins come in 4 different sizes, from mini to large. They can also be purchased with or without toys, but I definitely recommend paying a few dollars more for the toys. We have the Dinosaur Playscape in medium (picture at right shows the mini) and my boys are obsessed with it. The bin unzips into a fabulous "dinosaur island" play mat. It came with 4 dinosaurs and the kids have a blast playing with it. It's wonderful for creative play. I've seen the dinos do everything from having dinner together to jumping in and out of the volcano, pretty exciting. Set up and clean up is a breeze, even my 3 year old has figured out the side zippers that turn it back into a storage bin. With a Velcro closure lid and sturdy carrying handles, the ZipBin is easily portable. A GREAT on the go toy. There is also a ton of room in the bin. I went to Target and bought my boys a bunch of extra dinos, so now it's a highly populated prehistoric playground!

If you've got girls, the Fairy Castle and Unicorn sets are the way to go. Crafty kids will love the Creative Kits. There's also an adorable farm and a train set that has become a fast favorite at my house. With toys, the mini ZipBins are only $9.99! A great gift at an even greater price. The quality is fantastic, and the kids love them. Can you say win-win situation?

The ZipBin is a genius product, I really don't know how it's taken me so long to discover it, but now that I have, it's my new favorite gift to give. For more information and to stock up on ZipBins, visit www.zipbin.com

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Green Dimes

Are you tired of getting your mail and getting loads and loads of junk mail? Well now there is a solution, Green Dimes! For only $20 you can get started with the Free Me service and the Green Dimes team will take you off dozens of mailing lists (for every member of your family plus past tenants), you will stop receiving unwanted catalogs and they will plant 10 trees on your behalf!! How cool is that!?! Green Dimes will monitor your account every month to make sure you are junk mail free! Also, for an extra $16, you can get the Green Me option which is the Free Me service plus a reusable bag, Green Times T-shirt, 2 energy saving bulbs, and a children’s book! What a fabulous service! Save the environment and save yourself from junk mail! (Please note: Only available in the US)


To get started going green, visit www.greendimes.com



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All About Baby

All About Baby has a unique certificate called the Babyography which commemorates your baby’s birth! It has a dozen personal facts that you provide about your baby’s birth plus some random facts about what’s going on in the world at the time of the birth, like famous people who share the same birthday, famous events, what items today’s kids are into (example: Bratz dolls, ipods, Webkinz, Wii, etc), what’s hot on TV and much more! Plus you can have your certificate framed, if you choose, which makes it even more special! If you really want to give a Babyography as a gift but don't know all the exact details of the baby's birth, All About Baby has Gift Certificates available as well. A great personalized gift for any mom and child!

For 20% off all products at All About Baby, enter coupon code ABSD.

Visit www.allbaby.com

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Wednesday, March 12, 2008

New Fashionable Political Handbags


Campaign fever is spreading across the nation! Support your favorite candidate with the SnapTotes line of political bags featuring Senators McCain, Clinton, and Obama. Choose between a roomy Bucket bag or a versatile Clutch and show your support for your favorite Presidential candidate. For every political bag purchase, SnapTotes will donate 25% of bag sales to your candidate's campaign.

You may view the entire political collection here: http://www.snaptotes.com/design/view.aspx?category_guid=74711e0c-0d12-4e55-99e9-2ccc0a1260df



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With nearly 80 degree weather most of the week here in southern California, Flip Flop season has officially started (it never really ends at our house). What's more fun than a new pair of flip flops for the warm weather? How about a pair of flip flops with secret compartments? How about a pair of flip flops with secret compartments that hold a story book? How about a pair of flip flops with secret compartments that hold a story book in which your child will learn valuable life lessons? YES! Flip n' Flops are a genius new creation designed to teach children compassion and empathy, their motto "Put Yourself in My Shoes."

Flip n' Flops come in 4 different colors: army green, bubble gum pink, purple poncho & surfer blue. They are available in 3 sizes (10/11, 12/13 & 1/2). The secret compartments are stored securely in the soles of the flip flops and are removed by sliding them in and out of the "heel" area. Each compartment comes with an adorable story book that has a great lesson. The books each tell a different tale, for example "Good Day" in the left shoe and "Bad Day" in the right. Each pair of Flip n' Flops comes with one pair of stories. However, there are a total of five different sets. So if you'd like, you have the option to buy a variety of stories to change out. In addition to "Good Day/Bad Day," you can also purchase "Dashing Dolphin/Steady Turtle," "Manners are for Me/Sharing is for Us," "New Kid/Neighborhood Kid," and "Sports Star/Book Buster." All stores feature the adorable "Flip n' Flop Friends and are printed on water resistant paper.

The overall consensus at my house is that these flip flops are the "Coolest Ever!" My almost 4 year old loves the stories and my 6 year old thinks the secret compartments "ROCK." He already has plans on stashing hidden treasures in them when we're out and about. He also asked me if he could carry around his own spending money! Which actually is a great idea.

Too bad they don't make these in adult sizes, I mean, stick your key, money, ID and credit card in there and you're good for a day at the beach, pool, or park. Come on, Flip n' Flop Adventures, mommy wants some too!

Visit www.flipnflops.com and treat the feet you love!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

The Big 3

It’s a well-known fact that good nutrition is important for new and expectant mothers -- to ensure not only their own health, but the healthy development of their children. But many women are unaware of each key nutrient important to their diet. That’s where the “Big 3” nutrients – folic acid, calcium with vitamin D and DHA Omega-3 – become important. The “Big 3” are considered essential during pregnancy and breastfeeding but according to a recent survey sponsored by the Society for Women’s Health Research (SWHR), the majority of women only know the importance of two out of three of these nutrients. To learn more please visit www.thebig3.org.

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Sunday, March 09, 2008

b.delicious: Peacocks, Hippos & Owls, Oh My!



Looking for some unique hair goodies for your little ones? b.delicious has some fantastic new styles to hold back those lovely little locks. I love that the designs are so different from any other hair clips I've seen. I mean a peacock? How cute is that? Also, hippos, pigs, & strawberries, so fun! The clips are all made of hand cut ultrasuede and are put together immaculately. The designs can be purchased as clips or ponytail holders. b.delicious also has a new line of fun room accessories. I LOVE their little owls. My 3 year old has the brown orange owl and it's literally his new favorite buddy. He carries it around "hooting" and sleeps with it every night. The size is perfect and it's more than adorable. The owls come in several different colors and would make great room decor. The site suggests using them as bookends, a great idea. Also check out the new felt flower pots, perfect room decor for any little girl.

Visit the b.delicious site today, you're sure to find something wonderful! From shirts to accessories to owls, they've got it all. Oh, and tell the Easter Bunny that the hair clips fit perfectly in plastic eggs!

For more info, visit http://www.bdelicious.com/

Baby Celebration LA Pre-Event with Radio Disney

Baby Celebration LA…which is due at the LA Convention Center South Hall – Hall K April 12-13 is doing a pre-event with Radio Disney…actually a couple of them and you probably want to know…’cause there are great prizes…really great!

Head to the “Avenue of the Peninsula” (It’s in Palos Verdes) Saturday March 15 this event is co-sponsored by Radio Disney…ok, yes you really do get a pass to the mall but just look at the things you can win! Pregnant mommies…you are beautiful right now. We know you may not feel that way, but you are! To prove a point we are searching for one gorgeous pregnant mom (again, you are all gorgeous) to walk the “Mommy Catwalk” at 12:00 noon on Saturday March 15. One mom chosen will actually participate in the professional “Celebrate the Bump” Fashion Show at Baby Celebration LA held at the LA Convention Center South Hall – Hall K April 12-13. Check out the Baby Celebration LA website at www.babycelebrationla.com for more details.

Dads, you don’t get away that easily. Here is your chance to prove that you are the daddy with the best daddy skills of all the dads at the mall! Competition is a good thing. So daddy, get in the car with your family head for the “Avenue of the Peninsula” on Saturday, March 15 and wear your fastest shoes. When you enter the Baby Celebration LA “Daddython” sponsored by Graco, you could win big! Log on to www.babycelebrationla.com for details, click on 08 pre-events. Some of the prizes are really amazing. Trust me, the mommy in your life will be truly appreciative and you could be the best dad for many years to come. Just think about it… the stories of your big win could be told over and over again for the next 10 or twenty years. Ok, maybe just a few months but hey!

Mark your calendars right now! Save the date March 15… and go to

www.BabyCelebrationLA.com website for more details! See you there!

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Sponsor: Tano Jewelry


Don't have time to do your hair? Lounging at the beach this summer? Fashion Headbands are the perfect combination of style and comfort. Headbands are easy, fun and affordable. Tano Jewelry offers the latest headband fashion all under $15.00!


What's your favorite style? Polka Dot Headbands are in high demand by all the retro stylists out there; 80's fashion is at the forefront of the Hollywood trends. All the hottest celebrities are rocking headbands from the clubs to their favorite coffee house.


There is no easier way to tame morning hair than with a fashionable, comfy headband. Pick your favorite headband style and make it your own. Tano Jewelry offers businesses and work at home mom's wholesale headband packages as well.


Visit www.TanoJewelry.com

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Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Aden + Anais

Aden + Anais muslin style swaddling wraps are an ultimate solution for today’s swanky mom! These wraps are double layer wraps made with 100% muslin cloth which provide the perfect amount of warmth without overheating your baby. With the generous size of the wraps (47x47 inches), they can be used for both infants and toddlers. The Aden + Anais are also multi-functional, they can be used as blankets, portable crib sheets, burp clothes, stroller shades, nursing shields and much more! Aden + Anais also has a fabulous line of muslin blankets, washcloths and hooded towels!

Visit www.adenandanais.com

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Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Prima Princessa: Ballet for EVERYONE!

"Prima Princessa presents Swan Lake" was a delight to share with my children. My daughter (2 ½ years old) loves to dance and play dress up, and this was the perfect way to share the beauty of ballet with my children. I was also pleasantly surprised when my 4 ½ year old son asked to watch it again and began to try the different ballet moves. My children were engaged and enthralled to be part of this interactive DVD.

This DVD introduces children not only to the beauty of ballet, but allows them to learn, participate and understand how a story can be told through dance. I loved that they told the story of Swan Lake as it was being preformed, shared and demonstrated different ballet moves, and showed professionals, school children, and toddlers dancing. This would be a perfect gift for any little girl or family who wants to share the fine arts with their children.

This fabulous DVD is available at Amazon.com and qualifies for free shipping if you spend $25.00, so why not pick up a cute ballet book to go along with it!

For more info, visit www.primaprincessa.com

THIS REVIEW WAS WRITTEN BY OUR NEW BLOGGER, SWANKY MOM LYNNE!

Monday, March 03, 2008

Snap Totes


I have a Snap Tote and I will tell you, I receive compliments on it ALL the time!! Even a handful of men have asked me where I got my bag!! I have handed out lots of business cards and given out the name of this wonderful company as I truly love my Snap Tote! It has a photo of my beautiful boys on it and I'm proud to carry it around!
You send in your favorite photo and they make it into a wonderful masterpiece! What a fabulous gift for a grandma, new mom or proud pet owner! This tote definitely receives the Swanky Seal of Approval!

To get your Snap Tote, visit www.SnapTotes.com

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Sunday, March 02, 2008

B.Y.O.G. - Fashionable Labor & Delivery Gowns DO Exist


Fashionably, there's not much worse than a dingy blue, open in the back, yucky-used hospital gown. Honestly, I'm pretty sure that the ones I had to wear even had holes in them and were stamped with the hospital's name! Not very fashion forward. Especially since the day you give birth is guaranteed to be a big picture taking day, right? Well, lucky for you, I've found a solution that will save you from the dreaded hospital issued gowns. B.Y.O.G. (you guessed it, Bring Your Own Gown), offers mommies-to-be a stylish hospital gown that will make you look great no matter how your body feels-I really didn't feel photogenic after a c-section, but had I been wearing my B.Y.O.G. I would have felt much better about saying "CHEESE!"

The gowns come in 6 different fabrics, my favs are the Appletini and the Bluebird. They come with a super cute removable ribbon tie that makes them look more like a dress than a hospital gown. Take the ribbon off for L & D then put it on to look cute when you're back in your recovery room! The gowns are 100% super soft cotton and are machine washable. They are available in two sizes S/M (pre-pregnancy size 0-8) and L/XL (pre-pregnancy sizes 10-16). I know, you're already sold, but wait... there's more! The shoulder sleeves unsnap for easy nursing AND there are snaps down the back, so you won't have to BA your visitors when you get up for a potty break!

Honestly, I think that the B.Y.O.G. is a fabulous idea, it would make a great shower gift, the baby gets spoiled no matter what, so why not spoil mommy with a great item to stick in the "hospital here we come" bag? I think that any mom-to-be would appreciate a B.Y.O.G. And really, the gown is not limited to the maternity wing. If you know anyone having surgery or someone who is in the hospital for other reasons, I think the B.Y.O.G. would bring a smile to their face. I know on a rough day, a cute outfit always helps me!

Visit the B.Y.O.G. site and spoil yourself or someone you know. With the B.Y.O.G. you're sure to be the hippest hospital hottie! Use the code "swanky" for 15% off your order.

Skipping Hippos: A Day in May Jacket


Living in Southern California, we don't really need "winter coats." I mean, my kids think a winter coat is a hooded sweatshirt! I'm always on the lookout for lightweight jackets. One of my favorite lines, Skipping Hippos, recently introduced me to what I think is the one of the cutest lightweight jackets for little girls I've ever seen. You've got to check out their "Day in May" jackets. The coats come in three colors: almond, raspberry & wedgewood. They are available in sizes 2T through 6X, so even your big girl can wear one. I love the big buttons and adorable collar and the craftsmanship is impeccable. The lining fabric adds to the overall fantasticness and trust me, you will get compliments galore with this one. While visiting Skipping Hippos, don't forget to check out their irresistible ponchos, every little girl needs one of these too.

Come on Skipping Hippos, why can't you make some jackets in mommy sizes! Visit the site today and treat your little darling to a REALLY darling coat.