Spoonful Test Blog

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Funky

I'm sorry that I haven't been around much this week!  For some reason I've been in a funk, and blogging in a funk is no good at all.  Because then it would be all funky.

Part of my funk stems from Gibson's six molars that are cutting through.  SIX.  WHY???

At some point I thought it would be easier if he would just grow all of his teeth at once.

I TAKE IT BACK!!

I would prefer that he grow two teeth at a time.  His usual teething method is one tooth at a time, as slowly as possible.  Which is almost as bad as growing all of the molars at once.  But not quite.

Needless to say, our house is quite full of tantrums this week.  And drool.  And refusal to eat anything but peanut butter sandwiches...and even those are sometimes not good enough!

Luckily, he's super happy today so far!  Hooray!

Unluckily, my house smells like poop for some reason.  I'm going to go figure it out.  And maybe make it smell better.

Have a good Thursday!

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Monday, June 23, 2014

I'm 315 months old!

I'm normally not a very controversial person.

...except that I don't love brown sugar cinnamon Pop-Tarts.  Apparently that's a hot topic among some circles.

But in general, I don't worry too much about the decisions that other parents make.  As long as you aren't putting your child in danger, I figure everything will be okay.

I have come across people who get VERY worked up about other parents' decisions.  And I'm here today to defend one of my decisions that is apparently reprehensible to many people in this world.

I tell people how old Gibson is in months.


I KNOW.  I'm sorry for making you angry, people of the world!

Here is a list of the reasons that I will continue to say Gibson's age by months:

1.  A one-year-old changes significantly from month to month.  At 15 months, Gibson is an entirely different child than he was at 12 months.  And at 18 months, he'll be even more different.  At 21 months he'll be even DIFFERENTER.  But he's technically a one-year-old that whole time.

2.  I'm a mathematician and I like impressing people with big numbers (19, 21, 14, etc).

3.  There are fewer syllables in "fifteen months" than "one year and three months."  I'm all for streamlining processes!

4.  Saying his age in months helps Gibson feel like a big boy.  Because his monthly age increases each month, whereas if I went by years he would just be a measly one-year-old for twelve straight months.

5.  Because I can.

See?  So many good reasons!  But don't worry, I plan to stop using months after he turns twenty-four months (two years old).  Because my math skillz only go so far.

And really, you should all be thanking me for telling you Gibson's age in months instead of fortnights, which is what I would prefer.

...maybe I'll start doing that instead.  That way I could write an update every two weeks!  Be on the lookout for Gibson's 34th fortnight update next week!

Disclaimer: I have never truly felt judged for using months to say Gibson's age.  I just think it's funny that some people are so opposed to it.
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Saturday, June 21, 2014

DIY Wood "Butcher Block" Countertops

Just in case you've missed literally every blog post I've written for the past month or so, we're giving our kitchen a makeover!


I KNOW.  I've done a pretty good job keeping it quiet, right?  /sarcasm

So anyway, I have a project to share with you!  Making our own wood countertops has definitely been the biggest project we have undertaken...probably in our lives.

...besides making a child, of course.

I was SO nervous to make these countertops, but I looked at a lot of good blog tutorials and we used a lot of common sense, and we love the outcome!  Hopefully this blog post will join the ranks of good wooden countertop tutorials so that future DIY-obsessed people can use it!

First of all, you need wood.  We ended up with white fir and southern yellow pine.  I would have preferred to use all of one kind of wood, but Lowe's didn't have 2x8s and 2x6s in the same kind of wood.  Silly Lowe's!

Our old counters were around 25 inches deep, so that's what we aimed for.  The counters are made with two 2x6s and two 2x8s.  The actual dimensions of lumber are different than what they're called (which is silly, if you ask me), so I used this chart to help figure out exactly how much we needed!

The island top used four 2x6s and two 2x8s.  We made it wider than the old counter so that we can put stools there for extra seating!

So!  Measure how long each chunk of counter needs to be, and decide how many pieces of lumber you'll need.  We ended up getting five 8-foot long pieces of 2x8 and six 8-foot long pieces of 2x6.  That was the best way to do it so that we didn't have crazy amounts of wood leftover.

Next, cut your wood!  We would have had Lowe's do this for us, but their saw was broken.  WHAT THE HECK, Lowe's??  So Danny ended up cutting the wood with his miter saw, which is definitely not ideal.  A circular saw would have been much easier!

Once the wood was cut, we let it acclimate for a few days.  That way it would be used to our house's humidity (and the extreme amounts of floating dog hair) before we put it together.  Also, we were too scared to do anything with it.

At some point we bit the bullet and started working on the counters.  We did one chunk of counter at a time, because we only had four huge clamps.  And also having a million chunks of counter sitting around our house would have been overwhelming.

Our process for making the counters was:

1.  Decide the layout of the lumber.
2.  Mark each piece of lumber with a number so we don't forget the layout.
3.  Drill pocket holes in the lumber with the mini Kreg jig so they can be attached to each other.



4.  Lay the boards out between the clamps, put Liquid Nails on the edges, and squish them together.


5.  Put the other clamps on the front.


6.  Wipe up any Liquid Nails that squished out.
7.  Put screws in the pocket holes.
8.  Let it dry for as long as the can of Liquid Nails says (ours says 12 hours, I think.)

Ta da!  The chunk is made!

The next steps are:

9.  Sand the bejeezus out of the counter (especially the top).  We used both a belt sander and palm sander.
10.  Use stainable woodfiller to fill the cracks and knots.  We used Minwax.  It's the worst.  Although I'm pretty sure all woodfiller is the worst.
11.  Sand again!  Like crazy!
12.  Wipe the chunk down with tack cloth (it's nasty sticky cheesecloth that gets all the dust off)
13.  Seal the backside of the counter with polyurethane and let it dry for a nice long time.
14.  Stain the top and any sides that will show.  We used two coats of Cabot Aged Leather.
15.  Once the stain is nice and dry (follow the directions on the can!), start polyurethaning.  We used Rustoleum semi-gloss polyurethane.

To polyurethane the counters, we:
16.  Lightly sand the top of the counter
17.  Use a tack cloth to clean it off
18.  Apply the polyurethane
19.  Let it dry as long as it needs; then repeat steps 16-19 again as many times as you want!

We ended up using between four and five coats on our counters.

Also, sorry I don't have many pictures of some of this process!  It turns out that it's hard to do things and take photos at the same time.  Oh well.

Now let your counters cure!  We put them in the guest room for almost a week while we did other kitcheny things.  You don't want to use them super heavily for at least a few days, but I would give it a week after the last coat of polyurethane.

You're probably wondering about the sink, right?  That gorgeous $4 sink!


That was actually the most nerve-wracking part!  We cut the hole for the sink prior to sanding, woodfilling, and staining.

First we made a template for the sink opening by tracing it through the drain hole onto some cardstock that we taped together.


Then we taped the template to the counter and figured out exactly where we wanted it.

Look at that gorgeous wallpaper!

We traced the shape onto the sink, and I promptly had an anxiety attack.

No, for real.  I was freaking out.  Because after Danny drilled a pilot hole, he started cutting out the sink opening with his jigsaw.

This photo is staged. I couldn't be present for the cutting.

...it's not that I don't trust him.  I'm just a nervous nelly, that's all!  And since we have an undermount sink, the hole is very important!

Luckily, he did a great job (of course!).  After the sink hole was cut, he drilled hole using a 1.25" bit where the faucet would be.


After the counter was finished being sanded, stained, and sealed, we attached the sink.  We used clear silicone and sink clips to keep it on.


Gibson wanted to help!
Then we used silicone to seal the crack between the counter and sink and let it dry!  Ta da!

To install the counters, we put them on the cabinet frames and made sure they were level.  There was some shimming involved because our cabinets aren't level, as it turns out.  Awesome!  And the longest chunk of counter is a little bit warped at the end, but it doesn't bother me a whole lot.

We installed the faucet (the same one we had before, just without the deckplate) and hooked up all the plumbing.  I don't have details on that...every house is different!  Danny had to reroute some things since we went from two drains to one.  He's not a plumbing expert, but he watched lots of Youtube videos and figured it out.  I'm proud of him!

So now our counters are finished!  Hooray!  It's a huge relief that they're finished and not awful-looking.

Now for a cost breakdown!
Lumber: $53
Woodfiller: $16 ($8/tube)
Sandpaper: $12
Foam brushes: $3.60
1 1/4" drill bit: $5.30
Polyurethane: $22 ($11/quart)
Stain: $12.25
Tack cloth: $3
Silicone caulk: $8
Sink clips: $5
Sink: $4
Mini Kreg Jig: $20

TOTAL: $164.15

Originally, we were planning to buy butcher block counters from IKEA, which would have cost $400 with shipping to Danny's parents' house (to our house it would have been well over $600!).  And that doesn't include replacing the island top.

I'm pretty proud that we were able to do the counters for so much less than we wanted to originally!  We we have a huge island with extra seating this way!  Hooray!

If you want to make your own wood countertops, make sure to do lots of research and expect some frustrations.  Warping happens, and wood will never look perfect like granite.  But that's part of the reason we love them!  I like that they're rustic but still really pretty.



Also, we've been asked about the single basin sink as opposed to a double basin.  I actually like it way better!  It's really nice and deep, and I can fit cookie sheets/pans/other big things in it easier.  It's probably not for everyone, but I love it!  And the undermount is just amazing...I can wipe crumbs directly into the sink!  Yay!

And you might have noticed that the island is darker than the rest of the counters.  We're going to pretend like that was done on purpose, okay?

Let me know if you decide to make your own counters!  I would love to give you advice and encouragement!  But don't even ask me to help you make yours.  Because I won't.
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Please click the little lady below to vote for my blog today!  And then go make yourself some beautiful counters!  And make me a pie!
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Friday, June 20, 2014

Molar Monster strikes again!

Congratulations to Anne S. for winning the Summer Infant swaddle giveaway!  I emailed you this morning!  :)  For all of you losers non-winners, remember to enter the other giveaways for a chance to win something!  The Sweet Monograms Duffel giveaway and What's Your Baby's Poo Telling You? giveaway are ending tonight, and the Genuinely Simple Comfrey Cream giveaway will end tomorrow night!
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There are a few reasons that I'm blogging at 11:00 today instead of 8:00 like normal.

Would you like to know why?

It all started last night when I went to bed.  I was TIRED.  But then I laid down in bed and...ta da!  Wide awake.

Awesome.

So I was awake for a very long time.  At some point I fell asleep, thank goodness.  But it was 12:30 or so, which is way too late.

At 6:00 Gibson woke up.  Which is incredibly unfortunate.  But I'm a lucky lady, and Danny got up with him while I stayed in bed.

Except I couldn't sleep.  Again.  Even though I was SO TIRED.

So I dragged a blanket and pillow out to the couch to hang out with my boys...and that's where I finally fell asleep.

But then Gibson was super happy that I was on the couch and kept running over to me and slapping me really hard while screaming happily at me.  And he found a straw to poke me with.


I obviously can't sleep in conditions like that, so I begrudgingly woke up.  And that's when the Molar Monster decided to strike.

I kid you not, Gibson has been sobbing for nearly two hours.  Just crying and shrieking and throwing himself on the floor.  There were a few breaks in the crying, but they were far too brief.

Luckily, Danny got him calmed down with some Youtube videos or something.  And now I'm going to shove some chicken in his mouth and toss him in his room for a nap.  And pray that it lasts five hours, and that he wakes up happy.

...don't worry.  He's crying again.  Molars can bite me.

Literally.  Get it?  Haha!
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Please click the banner below to vote for my blog today!  I'm pretty sure that votes make molars grow in faster, right?  Is there a dentist out there that can confirm that for me?
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Thursday, June 19, 2014

Gibson the creeper

Yesterday we took a break from kitchening (totally a verb) to take Gibson to a nearby mall to play.  They have one of those squishy places with squishy things to play on.  You know what I mean?

...how could you not?  I'm obviously so descriptive!

We figured that he would have SO MUCH FUN and wear himself out, and then sleep forever!  SUCH A GOOD PLAN!

Except that he didn't want to play on the squishy things.  He only wanted to walk up and down the wheelchair ramp that led down into the squishy place.

He would walk halfway up it, and then turn around and run down.  Up again, down again.  Up, down.  Over and over and over and over.

It was THRILLING.


For like two seconds.

We dragged him out to the middle of the squishy floor, and he ran around for a minute.  And then found his way back to the ramp.

At some point Gibson realized that there were STAIRS on the other side of the play place...and what could be better than stairs?

But on his way to the stairs, he noticed that there were other children running around.  And children are better than stairs, obviously!!

It turns out that Gibson LOVES other kids.  Loves them.  He runs around with them, and I'm pretty sure he thinks they're playing with him.  Even when they're not.

So he ran over to a group of kids who were sitting on the floor and stood uncomfortably close to one of them.  He was probably 8 or 9 years old, and he obviously had no idea what to do with the small human standing mere inches away from his face.

Gibson was smiling really creepily, just staring at this kid's glasses.  Never blinking.  Just staring and smiling.

It was weird.  I mean, I'm his mom and even I would be creeped out if he came up to me and stared at me like that.

Luckily, the object of Gibson's affection moved away pretty quickly (can you blame him?) and Gibson decided that the other children weren't fun to play with.

...and then he rediscovered the ramp.  And we repeated the up and down for ten minutes, and then decided that it was time to leave because it was ridiculous hot in the mall and Gibson was all sweaty.

In case you were wondering, Gibson did NOT sleep forever last night.  He woke up at 6:15 like a dork.  So our plan obviously didn't work.  Darn it.

Our plans to wear Gibson out NEVER work.  Because he is, as we established yesterday, the Energizer Bunny.  Why couldn't he be the Worn Out Bunny who sleeps until 8:00 instead?
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Today is your last day to enter the Summer Infant Swaddle giveaway, so go do that right now!  And then make sure to enter the other giveaways from last week!  And also click the banner below to vote for my blog!
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Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Bedtime at our house

Congratulations to Natalie D. for winning the Tiny Elephant Bowtique giveaway!  You're obviously a lucky lady!  All of you unlucky people should remember to enter the other giveaways that are ending this week...maybe you'll turn into a lucky person!
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If you're friends with Danny on facebook, you probably saw the video he posted last night.

For those of you who aren't friends with him (you're missing out!), it is a video of Gibson tearing around the house laughing uncontrollably.

This happens every. single. night.

Bedtime at our house is 7:00.  If Gibson gets into bed much later than 7:15, he's a terror all night, so we're pretty strict about starting the bedtime process at around 6:45.

But 6:45 is also the time that Gibson goes into crazy manic toddler mode.  Which makes it hard to get him changed and ready for bed.

It starts when Gibson sees that one of us is holding a nighttime diaper.  He starts giggling and runs down the hallway.  And then, when he sees that we're chasing him, he runs the other way down the hallway into the kitchen, around the island, and goes under the dining room table.

In case you didn't know, being under the dining room table is LITERALLY THE BEST.  Literally.  It's the funniest place EVER.  The only thing funnier than Gibson being under the dining room table is mommy being under there yelling, "I'M STUCK!  GIBSON, HELP ME!  I CAN'T GET OUT!"

...which I do sometimes.  Because hearing Gibson laugh is the best!  And also I legitimately get a little bit stuck.

At some point we are able to wrestle a diaper on Gibson, but you can forget putting pajamas on him at the same time!  The second his diaper is snapped, he does a barrel roll and repeats his running up and down the hall/through the kitchen routine.

It takes more wrestling to get Gibson into his pajamas.  The other night I got his pants on him before he ran away, so he just didn't wear a shirt to bed that night.  I was like, "FINE!  If you're going to run away, you just won't wear a shirt to bed!  Ha!"  That'll teach him, right?


...except for the fact that he literally couldn't care less that he didn't wear a shirt to bed.  Oh well.

The one thing Gibson always stops for is his allergy medicine.  Because medicine is DELICIOUS!  But once the last drop of Zyrtec is in his mouth, he's back on the move.

By the time Gibson has his milk and is shrieking with laughter in-between sips, we have decided that he should just run around until he gets tired.

Except that NEVER HAPPENS.

I'm pretty sure he's the Energizer bunny.  Because he never ever slows down.


At around 7:12 we decide to just brush his teeth and put him to bed, regardless of how happy he is.  Tooth brushing time is its own special animal, which usually involves Gibson brushing mine and Danny's teeth while giggling.  And lots of thrashing around while I try to brush his teeth.

And then it's bed time.  We have a quick snuggle, and then put Gibson on his bed, where he giggles like a madman and rolls around with his blanket.  And then we pray very fervently that he will fall asleep quickly and quietly.

...and then we're exhausted from chasing him around and collapse into a heap on the couch to watch tv.

The end.
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Tuesday, June 17, 2014

I'm sure you're wondering...

Guten morgen!

...good morning, for those of you who either don't know German or are too lazy to look it up on Google translate.

I know that you were all wondering what we got finished last week, since I took a kind of break to work on the kitchen.  We were busy little chipmunks and finished a lot of things on our to do list!

The counters are completely finished except for the island, which is currently making me a little loopy because it is covered in stain.

The island and lower cabinet frames are painted completely, and the upper cabinet frames and fur down need one more coat of paint.

The backsplash is up, along with the trim.  We still need to caulk the lower trim and paint it.

I keep thinking that we're close to being finished, but when I look at the list of things we still need to do, it makes me twitch a little.  I'm definitely ready to be finished and have my house back!  The bathroom and guest room are both functioning as kitchen storage, so they're super cluttered and I hate it!

But the bright side is that guests can make themselves a nice cup of coffee while they're using our bathroom.  I'm thinking about moving the coffee maker in there permanently.

I bet you're also wondering whether Gibson is the cutest baby in the world these days!


Well, he is.

Also, I skipped both his 14 and 15 month updates, which was incredibly painful for me.  So I'm going to tell you all about 15-month-old Gibson now!

Gibson weighs 27 pounds and is 33 inches tall.  That is the 95th and 97th percentiles, respectively.  And his head is over the 100th percentile...no surprise there!  He's a big-headed child for sure.


He is walking like a champion, and has started running most places.  Sometimes he kind of skips while he runs, which is adorable!  I'm going to pretend like he's doing it on purpose and not just tripping as he runs along.

Gibson's absolute favorite things are his trucks.  He drives them around all the time, and apparently he thinks they make a really loud yelling noise.  He used to vroom with his lips, but now his trucks just yell.  He especially likes driving them up and down Danny's legs and on his face.

Gibson really likes feeling legs.  He stands with his back to whoever is sitting on the chair or couch and runs his hand up and down their legs.  It's only a tiny bit weird.

I was worried about Gibson's verbal skills, but the pediatrician says he's fine.  And of course the day after his well baby check he started saying words...always trying to make me look like a liar!  He now says Ellie, bye (ba!), ball, and baby.

Speaking of baby, he LOVES his baby doll.  Sometimes.  He'll whisper to it nicely (and kind of creepily) and then whack its head on things and throw it.  So...he's a semi-good daddy.


Teeth-wise, Gibson is starting to cut the back sides of his upper two-year molars, and at least two of his one-year molars are starting to come through.  The other two aren't far behind as far as I can tell.  Molars are the worst and I HATE THEM.

Also, for real.  What kind of child grows his two-year molars before the one-year ones?  He's obviously trying to beat all of his friends in a molar-growing competition.

I wish he would just drop out of the competition and stop growing them.

Pretty much everything Gibson does these days is absolutely hilarious and adorable.  He's just a super delight, even though he throws approximately twenty three tantrums a day.


So there's my kitchen/baby update!  Thanks for bearing with me while I did five million giveaways this past week!  And remember to enter all of them!  Today is the last day to enter the Tiny Elephant Bowtique bow giveaway, so make sure to do that!

Tiny Elephant Bowtique
Summer Infant Swaddles
Sweet Monograms Duffel Bag
Genuinely Simple Comfrey Cream/Lotion Bars
What's Your Baby's Poo Telling You? book

And, as always, please vote for my blog today!  I slipped down in the rankings a little this past week, and I would love to move back up!  Just click the banner below, please and thank you and you're welcome!
If you like what you just read please click to send a quick vote for me on Top Mommy Blogs- The best mommy blog directory featuring top mom bloggers

Monday, June 16, 2014

What's Your Baby's Poo Telling You?

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY!

...a day late.  Sorry!  I was busy having fun times with Gibson and his daddy yesterday!

In honor of Father's Day and all things man, I'm going to tell you about a super funny (and informative) book today!  And one person will have the chance to win a copy!  Hooray!


What's Your Baby's Poo Telling You? is a book about...wait for it...POOP.  Baby poop, to be specific.  It was written by the authors of What's Your Poo Telling You?, another book about poop.

These guys are obviously experts on the subject!

Josh Richman and Anish Sheth, M.D., wrote this book as a guide to parents about all of the intricacies of baby poop.  They go through the wonder of pregnancy poop, what you should have on hand to deal with poop, the different colors of baby poop and what they mean, the different kinds of baby poop (my favorite is the "baby logjam"), other body fluids and what they mean, and potty training.

That's a lot to cover in a fairly short book!  But they do it well, and made me laugh along the way!

The section about cloth vs. disposable diapers was definitely my least favorite.  The authors are definitely in favor of disposable diapers, which is fine, but they didn't give cloth diapers much of a chance in that battle!  For readers who are deciding on how to diaper their baby, disposables definitely come out looking WAY better than cloth...but that isn't the truth for all families!

*Note to the authors: If you want me to write a section about why cloth diapers really are great, I'll gladly do it for you!  Give them a chance, guys!

 Despite my sadness over the diaper chapter, I loved this book!  I laughed out loud fifty times (yes, I counted!), and books don't often make me laugh.  The authors employed lots of puns, which I love, and had great comedic timing in general.

One of my favorite parts of the book was the Poonami classification system:

Class I: Minor spread of poo beyond the limits of the diaper.

Class II: Like a bubbling cauldron, the poo oozes beyond the diaper border, extends halfway up the back and/or halfway down the thighs, and the changing pad experiences contamination.

Class III: Widespread soilage that alters the color and feel of the baby's clothing, with evidence of the disaster also noticeable in the baby's hair and/or on the parent's clothing.

Other things I love about this book include:
-The illustrations (not photographs, don't worry!)
-Their survival tips for different types of poop
-Doodie Disasters
-The names of the types of poop
-The fact that they call it "poo" instead of poop.  My favorite!

There are so many things to love!  This book would make a great baby shower gift...I'm planning to leave mine on the back of the toilet for guests to read when they're in there.  Because what could be better than that?

If you would like to win a copy of this book to give to a friend or keep for yourself (it really is informative!), use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter!  I'll choose a winner on the morning of Saturday, June 21st, and the giveaway is open to United States residents.

Remember to vote for my blog by clicking the banner at the bottom of this post!  It won't help you win an awesome book about baby poo, though.  Sorry.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Disclaimer: I was not compensated for this review; all opinions are my own!

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Genuinely Simple Comfrey Cream Review and Giveaway!

Happy Saturday!

I'm so excited to share this giveaway with you (per usual)!

When Laura (who is stinking ADORABLE), the owner of Genuinely Simple, contacted me about doing a review of her comfrey cream and lotion bars, I didn't know what comfrey was.  So I did some research, and decided that I definitely needed to try it out!

Comfrey is a plant that has lots of great uses.  It is rich in vitamins A, C, and B12, as well as calcium, potassium, and protein.  The best part of comfrey is that its leaves contain Allantoin, which is a chemical that promotes cell growth and bone strengthening while suppressing inflammation.

Comfrey is often used to help joint and muscle pain, can help to heal cuts and scrapes, and is super useful for skin problems like eczema, diaper rash, poison ivy, and sunburn.

Laura sent me three comfrey creams and two lotion bars.  One comfrey cream is unscented, one is scented with lavender essential oil, and the other with peppermint essential oil.  The lotion bars are unscented.

I had never used a lotion bar before, and it turns out that I love them!  They are made from comfrey root and leaf, calendula, olive oil, shea butter, and candelilla wax.  There's nothing in these products that could be harmful to your body, which I love!  The lotion bars melt slightly when they are warmed, so when you rub it in your hands you get just the right amount of lotion.

www.facebook.com/GenuinelySimple
The comfrey creams feel more like a salve than a lotion.  It is oily, but rubs into the skin nicely and leaves it so soft!  They contain the same ingredients as the lotion bar, with the added essential oils in the scented ones.  They smell absolutely amazing...you know that I love essential oils!

I used the unscented comfrey cream on Gibson's diaper rash which, for some reason, was AWFUL this past week.  It cleared it right up...thank goodness!

I also used the comfrey cream on my arms.  I have keratosis pilaris on my upper arms (red bumps that drive me insane), so I figured it couldn't hurt to use it!  I didn't see a huge difference with the redness, but my arms are definitely smoother.  I'll definitely keep using the cream on my arms and will let you know how it goes after I've been using it for awhile!

And the most use the comfrey cream got was yesterday, when Danny helped a friend cut some lawns and forgot to take sunscreen.


I KNOW.

So he came home looking pretty normal, but as the day progressed, he turned into lobster man.  This is definitely the worst sunburn he's ever had.  So before bed last night I put some peppermint comfrey cream on his burn, and it helped!  Hooray!  He was miserable all day, so I'm glad something helped!

Genuinely Simple is a family-run business, and is currently doing an expansion.  They could use support in this endeavor...and who doesn't love supporting small businesses?  If you're interested in helping them, you can visit their Indiegogo website here.  You can donate as little as one dollar to help them out...and helping will make their products more readily available, which is good for everyone!

Laura has been generous enough to offer a fun giveaway for you guys!  One winner will receive three comfrey creams (one lavender, one peppermint, one unscented) and two unscented lotion bars.  

This giveaway is open for residents of the United States and Canada, and I will announce a winner next Sunday, June 22!  Use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter!

But before you enter, please click the banner at the bottom of this page to vote for my blog today!  Voting is good for your heart, according to Dr. Erin.
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If you like what you just read please click to send a quick vote for me on Top Mommy Blogs- The best mommy blog directory featuring top mom bloggers
Disclaimer: I was not compensated by Genuinely Simple for this review.  All opinions are my own!

Friday, June 13, 2014

Sweet Monograms Duffel Giveaway!

A few days ago I posted a review of Gibson's cute new luggage.

WELL GUESS WHAT!  I have a pretty new bag, too!

Now if only someone would send Danny a bag, we would all be set to travel!  As it is, Danny will have to pack his things in a very girly bag.  Too bad for him!

Jennifer is the owner of Sweet Monograms, and is generously offering one lucky reader their choice of a duffel bag with personalization!  She's the best!

I chose to get the taupe chevron duffel with my monogram stitched on in aqua thread.  It's so beautiful!


This duffel is very well made, and the embroidery is absolutely beautiful!  When you get a product from Sweet Monograms, you can choose from several fonts and thread colors for your embroidery.


photos from www.sweetmonograms.com

The duffel bag has one outer zipped pocket, and another one inside.  For the photo I took, I shoved a pillow in the bag...and it could have fit at least two more!  It definitely has plenty of room for all the clothes and socks and toothbrushes I would need for a short trip!

One of you lucky readers (from the United States) will win a duffel bag!  You can choose your color and personalization...and then we can go on a trip to Hawaii with our new bags!

...the trip to Hawaii isn't part of the prize.  You'll be responsible for paying for that.  And you can pay for me to go, too, if you want!

To enter, use the Rafflecopter widget below!  And again, I'll remind you to do the option before you confirm it...otherwise I have to delete that entry!  And I don't want to do that!

This giveaway is open to residents of the United States, and I will choose a winner on the morning of June 21!

And before you enter, please click the banner at the bottom of this post to vote for my blog today!  Voting won't help you win the giveaway, but it will surely make me love you more!

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Remember to enter the Tiny Elephant Bowtique giveaway and the Summer Infant swaddle giveaway!
If you like what you just read please click to send a quick vote for me on Top Mommy Blogs- The best mommy blog directory featuring top mom bloggers
Disclaimer: I was not compensated by Sweet Monograms for this review.  All opinions are truly my own!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Summer Infant Swaddle Giveaway!

So.  Gibson has decided that 5:30 is his wake-up time for the last week.

I'm the sleepiest lady in the land.  For real.  Coffee is my favorite of God's creations this week.

In any case, I'm excited to get out of molar land and have a normal baby who eats and sleeps again (is there such a thing?).

It turns out that getting babies to sleep is one of the hardest (and most important) parts of parenthood.  If they don't sleep, they scream.  And then they continue to not sleep.  And scream some more.  And then they scream again.

It's super fun.

For us, swaddling and white noise were the two most valuable tools in the battle that was sleep.  When we had to stop swaddling I cried.  It always calmed Gibson down so well...being snuggled up is reminiscent of being in the warm, watery womb!  Or so I'm told.

This might be a good time for me to confess that my friend Matt swaddled me once when I was pregnant.  He was showing Danny how.  It was WONDERFUL and I loved it.  I felt like a snuggly little caterpillar!


Since I'm obviously a huge fan of swaddling, I'm super excited to tell you about Summer Infant's swaddles!  They have four different stages of swaddles, and one lucky winner will get all four!  Yay!


Stage one is the SwaddlePod.  It can zip either up or down, which makes diaper changes easy...you can zip it up from the bottom so only the baby's legs are out.  The SwaddlePod fits very snugly, and is perfect for little newborns!  It fits babies between 5 and 10 pounds.


Bartholomew the Bear is standing in as my swaddle model.  Isn't he a sweet little baby?

Stage two is the SwaddleMe adjustable infant wrap.  There are two sizes; small/medium fits babies between 7 and 14 pounds, and the large fits between 14 and 20 pounds.  The baby's legs go in the bottom, and there are flaps that wrap around and velcro shut to hold their arms snugly.


Stage three is the WrapSack, which is a transitioning swaddler and wearable blanket.  This swaddle can be used with the baby's arms either in the swaddle or out of it.  This is a great swaddle to use when your baby starts rolling over and needs to stop being swaddled.  The arms are out, but you can still wrap it around the baby's body so they feel secure.  Size small/medium fits 7-14 pounds, and the large fits 14-20 pound babies.



Stage four is the ComfortMe wearable blanket.  It zips down around the bottom for easy diaper changes (which is so nice!), and the baby's arms are not swaddled.  It gives the baby the feeling of having a blanket, but without the risks that come with blankets!  The small/medium fits 10-18 pounds, and the large fits 18-24 pounds.

Gibson was my model for this, and he was NOT a happy helper.  He just wanted to walk around, which is hard when you're zipped into a wearable blanket!  He is also nine pounds too heavy for the small size, which I have, but I managed to stuff him in!

*If messy living rooms bother you, skip the next three pictures.  You have been warned.

Right before he decided to stand up and run away.

Somehow he managed to stand up!

Why can't I see my TOESSSSS???
I didn't have these swaddles when Gibson was little, unfortunately...but you can bet that I'll be using them when the next Spit Up baby comes along!  They're well-made, washable, and help babies to sleep so much better!  And anything that helps babies sleep is good in my book!

And now you have the opportunity to win all four stages of Summer Infant swaddles!  Even if you don't have a baby of your own, these swaddles would make a fantastic gift!  Use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter.  The giveaway is open to residents of the United States and Canada, and I will choose a winner on the morning of June 20th.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Voting for my blog won't help you win this wonderful giveaway, but I would love it if you did it anyway!  Just click the banner below!

And remember to head over and enter the Tiny Elephant Bowtique giveaway, too!
If you like what you just read please click to send a quick vote for me on Top Mommy Blogs- The best mommy blog directory featuring top mom bloggers
Disclaimer: I was not compensated by Summer Infant for this review.  All opinions are my own!