Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Jishaku: Bring on the Force!

My household is a big game family. From board games to video games, we love to try them all. We especially love games that the whole family can enjoy together! We were recently introduced to a new game called Jishaku and let me tell you, it's addictive...

Jishaku is a portable strategy game designed for ages 8 and up. I believe the age is 8 due to the piece sizes, but honestly, my boys ages 4 & 6 can both play the game, and love it. Jishaku is the Japanese word for "magnet," and the game is just that, magnetic fantasticness! Beautifully polished hematite magnetic stones, along with a mountainous foam tray create the game you will soon grow to love! There are a few ways to play, but we keep it simple, the one who runs out of magnets first is the winner! Take turns strategically placing your magnets in the holes, but be careful, the "force" might get you. If you set your stone in an area that creates a magnetic surprise, you must take all of the stones that become clumped together! The most hilarious thing about this game is that is surprises you every time, literally every time. I mean, I know the force is coming, but every time I hear that clump click together, it's startling!

Because the age on this product is ages 8 and up, my only suggestion would be to supervise kids under 8 playing as the pieces are magnetic and small. However, don't let this stop you from some hilarious family fun, Jishaku is a great game for all ages. Another bonus, this game is quick! If you aren't in the mood for an hour or two of Monopoly, whip out the Jishaku and please every one with a few fast rounds!

Visit the Jishaku online store today and add some excitement to the family game cupboard.
Use the code SWANKMOM for 10% off your order, code expiration is 8/31, so act fast... You may want to stock up for the holidays while you're at it!

GIVEAWAY: What is your family's favorite game? Be the 5th person to e-mail me at and win your own Jishaku game!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Music on the Go with the SweetPea3

Although the favorites have changed throughout the years, my boys have been listening to music since conception! In fact, even at ages 4 & 6, they still listen to the same classic lullaby CD every night. Whether it's their own room, grandma's house, or on vacation, they want their "music." In the past, we'd lug a portable CD player, but now, we've got the ultimate solution! You MUST check out the SweetPea3 by SweetPea Toy Company. It's an MP3 player for tots ages 0-8. Yes, 0-8! The rubber coated MP3 unit is super easy to use and the sound is fantastic. The player comes with three playlists. It hooks right into the computer with it's own USB cord. When you sync it to your computer, 3 folders come up. Each one is a playlist and you can drop and drag your music into the playlists you desire. So simple!

On ours, playlist one consists of some fun songs that came preloaded on the unit. I then added some of our own favorite fun songs like the entire They Might Me Giants "Here Come the ABC's." Play List 2 consists of some of my 6 year old's favs like Beastie Boys & Kiss. The third playlist is our "bedtime" music. My boys bring the SweetPea3 everywhere. It's lightweight and easy to operate.

The SweetPea3 comes in two colors, blue & violet, and takes one AA battery that will play 40 hours. The unit also comes with an AC adaptor (great for bedtime listening) and stores up to 4 hours of music. All files must be MP3 files, the easiest way to obtain them is to load your own cd's onto your computer and then transfer them to the unit. It takes just seconds! The user manual is very easy to follow and the company's customer service is fantastic. Best of all though? Grown ups control everything. There's virtually no way for kids to mess this thing up! The menu must be accessed by a specific pressing of keys. This is where the volume and playlists are chosen. The only thing little fingers can do is press play and move the arrows to forward to the next song, or go back to the last.

Visit the SweetPea Toy Company online store today and pick up your own SweetPea3. You will wonder how you ever got along with out it. Everyone I know wants ours! My sister even tried to take it from my boys. She has a 1 month old and wants to hang it from her carseat so my nephew can listen to his lullabies in the car while she enjoys her own music up front. Honestly, everyone can use a SweetPea3. From the crib to the car, the SweetPea3 will keep you rockin... or relaxing!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

It's Magic in a Bottle: POOF!

Ok, this has honestly got to be one of the most interesting products I have ever reviewed. I have to say, I never even knew that something like this existed, but I also have to say it's one of the most genius products I've ever seen. What might Poof be? How about the most effective toilet deodorizer on the planet! This tiny little bottle can get rid of the stinkiest smells around. Trust me, I had some pretty stinky people try this out.... It's simple and discreet. A bottle the size of eye drops with a wonderful Japanese Mint smell. A few drops in the toilet before you do your business, and guess what? Your business won't smell! I've used it myself, and I passed some bottles around to some family members who will remain nameless, but if it worked for them, it will work for anyone, I promise! Even my 4 and 6 year old are on board with Poof. The other day, I got my "Mom, please come wipe my butt!" call, and the bathroom smelled all minty. My 4 year old was sitting on the toilet with a big smile and said, "I love Poof." How hilarious is that!?!

You might want to tell Santa that Poof will make a hilarious stocking stuffer for any age. It's funny and functional. What could be a better gift? Visit the Poof site today and rid your bathroom of unwanted stinky visitors!

P.S. I sure wish I had this in my high school & college years, I mean who wants to leave a stinky bathroom behind when you can leave the room smelling like mint!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Swanky Summertime Fun with Crayola!

This summer turn to Crayola to spark creativity while creating smiles and keeping the kids busy! I am loving the new 3D Chalk products. If you haven't seen them, they are a must have. Inexpensive and oh so cool, your kids will love them too. When we first got them, my 6 year old and I were actually arguing over who got to try them out first! I have to say, I conveniently won the battle when I told him I had to see if they worked (I know it was a con, but I really wanted to try it!) Needless to say, they do work and they are so cool. My son and I took turns with the chalk and glasses, turning the patio into a 3D wonderland. Very fun!

Looking to create a giant masterpiece? Check out Crayola's Giant Inflatable Easel. No paper needed, create works of art directly onto the 5ft tall easel and then spray clean with the hose. Great for a hot day, create and then get soaked! The easel comes with everything you need to get started including a foot pump, paint, paint brush, and more!

Both products can be found at the Crayola Online Store. Visit today and pick up some super swanky summer fun activities!

Sweet Shoes: Make Them For Mommies, PLEASE!

I was recently introduced to Sweet Shoes at the Baby Celebration Event in Los Angeles. Let me just say that their style is super adorable and much more fashionable than the average soft leather baby shoe. Sweet Shoes were created by Swanky Mom Mandi Dana-Panzer of Santa Cruz, CA. Noticing that cute shoes were much easier to find for her daughter than her two younger boys (I feel your pain Mandi, I've got two boys too), she set out to create a hip and edgy line that could fashionably adorn the tootsies of both boys and girls. I am in love with every shoe in the line. A must have for the boys (but would be super cute on girls too... Baby Shiloh Jolie-Pitt wears them) are the skull "slip ons." For girls, I am in love with the Dandelion Sweet Janes, but I have to say if I did have a baby girl, she'd also have one of each of the new Metallic Sweet Janes. I mean metallic orange, green, teal, red, bronze, and silver, HOW FUN! Come on Mandi, make them for mommies, I'd buy!

For more information, visit Sweet Shoes at

To purchase some for your favorite little feet, check out their retailer page.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Silver Cross ~ Dazzle

If you are in the market for a stroller, you have to check out the Dazzle by Silver Cross! It is a fabulous stroller! The Dazzle is very sleek and stylish yet also lightweight and easy to use! The Dazzle is super easy to manoeuvre with it’s ergonomic handle bars and its single handed recline and folding system! The Dazzle is also equipped with 4 wheeled suspension for a silky smooth ride, a hidden shopping basket for those much needed trips to the mall and a canopy with viewing window and vents for peeking on your little one while on the move. It also has a handy ventilated rain cover for use on those rainy days. The Dazzle can be used from birth up to the toddler years. To get your dazzle on and shimmer your passers-by, get a Silver Cross Dazzle!


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Belle Baby Carriers

Belle Baby Carriers have gone organic! Besides their fabulously stylish original line, they now have several green options to choose from. The Belle Baby Carrier is a comfortable baby carrier, which distributes baby’s weight from the parents back and shoulders to the hips making it easier to carry your bundle for extended periods of time. Also, the Belle positions the baby in a ergonomic position that supports baby’s developing spine. It is stylish, safe and simple to use and can hold babies from 10-25 pounds either facing inward or outwards. Even Celebrities, like Julia Roberts, are using the Belle Baby Carrier!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Get Creative Naturally with Eco-Dough

As a former teacher, turned mom, I am always on the look out for fun crafts and activities. I was recently introduced to Eco-Dough, by Eco-Kids and the minute ours arrived, my boys rolled right in! Literally, they couldn't stop rolling. Our Eco-Dough came with the coolest bamboo rolling pins and it was so much fun to play with. Something about a natural rolling pin really sparked their interest and they wanted to know all about this cool new modeling material.

Eco-Dough is an all natural modeling material made from plant, fruit and veggie extracts. It comes in 5 beautiful colors: raspberry, mango, lemon, lime and blueberry. The dough is super soft, unscented, and best of all, it doesn't dry out. If it's left out overnight, just add a few drops of olive oil and you're back in business. Even it's container is compostable, so when it's all used up, there is no waste at all to worry about.

Another fabulous option is the gluten, dairy and soy free Eco-Dough. This wonderful company will actually make the dough to fit the needs of your kiddo! How fantastic is that?

I recommend the Eco-Dough gift bag, it comes with everything you need, in a cool bag with that great bamboo rolling pin! You can't go wrong. Visit the Eco-Kids site today and pick up some Eco-Dough, you'll never go back to that other "Doh" again.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Summertime Fun With the Yackle Ball

Looking for a unique new outdoor activity that the whole family will love? Get a few Yackle Balls and head for the park! At this point, I'm sure you're wondering what in the world is a "Yackle" !?! Well, let me introduce you. The award winning Yackle Ball is a unique "X" shaped ball that is easy to throw and catch. They come in two sizes, the Yackle Ball Jr. is perfect for little hands (ages 2+) and the original Yackle Ball (ages 5+). There is also a super cool Night Yackle that has glow in the dark stars on it. My boys LOVE the Yackle Ball, and honestly, I think it's super fun too. I love that the site has recommended games for both children and adults. There's so much you can do with the Yackle Ball. Although a simple game of catch is fun, the company has a great link with lots of fun games. There are also videos you can watch to perfect your Yackle skills.

Created by Swanky Mom Patricia Littwin, the Yackle Ball was created to entertain her kids. Her unique toys now put smiles on the faces of kids and adults around the world. And the best thing??? It's so fun, you'd never know you're burning calories while you do it!

Bring a Yackle Ball to your next birthday party, pick one up for a trip to the beach, or surprise your kiddos with a visit to the park for a game of Yackle. Visit the Yackle store today and get your family Yackling!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Danielle Elizabeth: Fashion, Function, and OH SO PRETTY!

Looking for the diaper bag that keeps on giving? Well, here's one that you can use way beyond diapers and wipes. Danielle Elizabeth makes exquisite diaper bags that are so beautiful, you might decide to take over on it for yourself, which is exactly what I have done. After using the bag for my boys, I decided that I loved it so much, it would be my new "mommy bag." You know you have one, that bag of tricks filled with coloring books, activities, hot wheels, and other fun things you need to whip out in time of need? Well, mine's the cutest one around!

I've been using the Lacy Green bag for over a month and I can't tell you how many compliments I've received. Not only is the bag beautiful (my favorite part is the rhinestone trim), but it's also very functional.

Features of this Delightful Wonder Include:

*Soft and Lightweight
*Ribbon and rhinestone trim
*Convenient external elastic bottle sleeve and personal pocket
*Two large internal compartments
*Two internal elastic pockets and one bottle pocket
*Eight pockets total
*Hidden magnetic closures
*Removable and storable, easy-to-clean oilcloth changing pad
*Tethered key-ring clip
*15” W x 14” H x 5” D
*Made in the USA

More greatness from Danielle Elizabeth is the fact that there are so many beautiful choices. You're sure to find the right one (or two)...

If you're looking for a quick on the go alternative for a diaper bag, check out Danielle Elizabeth's Diaper Clutch. Just as pretty, and very compact, the diaper clutches have the following great features:

*Soft and Lightweight
*Oilcloth changing pad
*Elastic pocket inside for diapers
*Zipper pocket inside for items such as wipes and ointments
*Zipper pocket outside for personal items
*Rhinestone trim and a fashionable design
*Changing pad can be cleaned with wipes (Oilcloth is not machine washable)
*Compartment section of bag can be removed and washed delicately with cold water
*Made in the USA

Visit Danielle Elizabeth today and treat yourself to your new favorite bag!

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Punkin Seed

The Boys Essentials Pack is an absolutely gorgeous gift set! It includes 3 stylish ribbon embellished burp cloths, 1 bib and a hooded bath towel! A perfect gift for a new parent and it has all the 'essentials' you need for the early days with your little punkin! Also, you can personalize your set to make it even more unique and special!


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Punk Rock Lullaby

Get your stylish tees for the expecting mom, baby and even your dog at Punk Rock Lullaby! This funky online boutique is filled with lots of hip tees for the whole family, with cute saying like “tiny prince”, “first born” and “bloomed”. Also, you can enter their draw for a free onesie by registering at their website. Check em out!


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Freckle Box

Everyone likes to feel special and Freckle Box does just that! They specialize in personalized products for your child! They make personalized books, coloring books, placemats, posters and journals! The next time your child has a birthday party, make them feel like a VIP with a fabulously personalized gift from Freckle Box!

Check them out at

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O’Yikes 24.7

O Yikes has a fabulous, retro inspired diaper bag called the 24.7 Square! It is a funky square diaper bag, with a padded interior so you can safely carry your laptop along with toting stuff for your tot! The 24.7 is something you will need for your parental duties, which are 24 hours 7 days a week, hence the name!! This hip diaper bag is available in chocolate/turquoise, chocolate/apricot and chocolate/avocado. It also has a funky nylon seat belt style strap which makes it easy to wear across your back or on your shoulder. The O Yikes line focuses on organization and functionality, so it has a keyring on the inside and several handy pockets to keep your stuff organized and easy to find! The 24.7 also comes with a matching accessory case, bottle holder, changing pad and wipes case!


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Get your little one some Polliwalks, they are the perfect shoe for summer! They are an adorable colorful clog available in 4 fantastic creatures – ladybug, frog, gator and duck! Not only are they super cute but they are fun for kids to wear because they have a “footprinter” on the bottom of the shoe which leaves the creature’s prints in mud, sand and water! Polliwalks are made of a soft foam construction and are super comfy and easy to slip on and off. Also, Polliwalks are simple to keep clean, just hose them off or throw them in the washing machine and you’re good to go!


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