Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Giveaway: Sanita's Original Danish Clogs @ Just for Me...and You (12.29)

Just for Me...and You is giving away a pair of Sanita's Original Danish Clogs in your choice of style, color, and size!

This is intriguing to me, because I love me some Danskos, and my initial thought was...Hmm, these look like Danskos. Then I headed over to Sanita Clogs and found out that even the style names were the same as Danskos.

So I poked around, and found this explanation: Sanita used to make Dansko's clogs. Dansko has lately gone with other manufacturers. SO...if you've liked Dansko clogs in the past, you like Sanita's in the present. Good enough for me!

These clogs are honestly very well made. Every part of the shoe is thick and durable. I imagine that these shoes would last forever.

I will vouch that, even if they're looking worn, you can take a well-made pair of shoes like a Sanita clog to a cobbler (did you know they still exist? They do!) and have them refreshed or repaired.

Go to the site to read her husband's experience as a nurse in the professional version of these clogs. I know, style-wise, clunky clogs aren't for everyone, but I'm too much a fan of comfort to let pesky fashion get in the way. Ha ha! But, no, seriously, I think they're cute, and I always get compliments on them, at least here in Seattle, home of rain-appropriate, walking-ready footwear. I live in my Danskos, and I could really use a shiny new pair...so I'll take a new set of Sanita's, for free, please!

Enter fast at Just for Me...and You by Dec. 29.

Friday, December 25, 2009

Giveaway: Strider Running Bike @ Energizer Bunny's Mommy Reports (12.31)

Energizer Bunny's Mommy Reports is giving away a Strider Running Bike!

I need this bike! When will I ever win one!?

Well, here's another chance! Get the one and only bike you need for kids before they are old enough to ride a regular pedal bike without training wheels. This running bike takes the place of tricycles, ride-on toys, and training-wheel bikes. It's fun, and it develops balance and confidence!

[T]his is your running bike, balance bike, training bike and walking bike all rolled up into one. With a couple of falls and confidence boost ups, your child will soon learn to walk...walk a little faster....jog a bit....life his/her feet up....balance and then ride away on his/her Strider.

Enter at Energizer Bunny's Mommy Reports by Dec. 31.

Giveaway: This Little Piggy's Playhouse @ Just for Me...and You (12.26)

Just for Me...and You is giving away an This Little Piggy's Playhouse!

I love the idea of make-believe toys with such wide-open possibilities. Besides the joy of playing house, I love that these houses let you decorate them yourself with your kids.

It’s Christmas time. You know how you scratch your head on Christmas morning because your children are playing more with the wrapping paper and boxes? You always joke and say “I’ll just get them a box next Christmas.” I’ve found the perfect “box.” It’s a cardboard playhouse by This Little Piggy’s House (cute name too!). Completely adorable.

I know it's very, very early Christmas Day, so I don't know what's in those wrapped boxes — well, the ones I didn't wrap myself. It's possible there's something similar already in there. But, since I don't know, here I go entering! :)

Merry Christmas, everyone! I hope there's something fun and surprising under your tree.

Enter fast at Just for Me...and You by Dec. 26.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Giveaway: Crazy Forts @ Born 2 Impress (12.24)

Born 2 Impress is giving away a Crazy Forts set!

How cute are these fort sets!

It's a series of plastic bars and plastic balls with holes in them that the bars snap into. You can arrange them into a series of different formations with help from the included blueprints, such as a castle, an igloo, or a tunnel.

Then just add bedsheets and blankets for an old-fashioned but really easy fort! It's simpler than moving the furniture around – and more convenient to take down when your kids (and you!) are done playing.

There are two things that kids of all ages love and that is putting things together and having their own hiding place or a little fort. I can tell you that the ladybug has had a hiding spot ever since she started to crawl( underneath the right hand side coffee table). But since she is getting bigger I thought after a couple of boo boos on her head, that is was time to look for a better alternative.

I found a way were she can create and have her own little space. Crazy Forts are a really fun way to exercise kid’s desire of putting things together and having their own little space.

Enter fast at Born 2 Impress by Dec. 24.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Giveaway: Oompa Wooden Tractor from Bajo @ Just for Me...and You (12.22)

Just for Me...and You is giving away an Oompa Wooden Tractor with Multiple Log Carts from Bajo!

I love this toy tractor because it is made from real wood and painted with child-safe, non-toxic lacquers. I imagine my son will love this toy because it has rolling wheels and interchangeable parts so he will be unlikely to get sick of this toy soon.

It comes with a tractor plus a flat cart, pegs for the cart, and a trunk to add, and hewn wooden logs to add a realistic touch! How adorable is that!

I just spent hours playing trucks with Mikko tonight. He has a tow truck and a dump truck-lifty-up thing hybrid (OK, I don't know construction vehicles, I admit — it has a front part that picks things up over its head and dumps them into the back part, which dumps them onto the ground — what is that?), and we drove them over the bed, picking up and shifting around "dirt," which in this case was some modeling clay. So I know he'd love the realistic logs to tote around in this tractor, and I love that it's natural, wooden, and beautiful to look at.

Enter fast at Just for Me...and You by Dec. 22.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Giveaway: Blush Topless Undershirt & Prima Princessa DVD @ Today's Give Away (12.19)

Today's Give Away is giving away a Blush Topless Undershirt from Blush and Prima Princessa Presents The Nutcracker, a 40-minute DVD from Prima Princessa!

I'll refer you to this post for a preview of the Blush topless undershirt/belly band, good for maternity, breastfeeding, or just covering your tummy in general!

I want to highlight the Prima Princessa DVD and explain why I want such a very pink DVD for my son.

I enjoyed but was not good at ballet growing up. We moved around a lot, so I took classes here and there, but it was not a high priority for my mom, who was not a girly-girl herself and who couldn't understand how she'd given birth to one. When I moved to Seattle, I found out about a Very Beginning Ballet class for adults only. It still took me a couple years to work up the courage — but eventually I enrolled. And I've been dancing since! I did take some time off during my pregnancies and postpartum recovery, but that's fine. I'm doing it for fun, not with any grand goal in mind. I am not a physically adept person, as every one of my despairing gym teachers would attest. Ballet has allowed me to connect with what my body can do. It has helped with some of my balance problems. The repetition and concentration required make me feel centered and aware of myself as a whole person, body and all.

I want that for my son. I don't know if it will be ballet specifically that inspires him, and I know I can't force such a revelation. But I hope he can grow up enjoying moving his body. If he has his father's and my predilection toward suckiness in sports, I don't want (failing at) competition to get in the way of enjoying physical movement and working toward improving himself.

Mikko's 2 and a half. He can begin toddler ballet classes at 3. I'm going to enroll him and see what happens. If he doesn't like it, he's free to leave. If he stays till the age of partnering, I guarantee he'll be the darling of all the girly-girls who mostly fill the classes!

I had a helper take him to one of my classes so he could see where I go every week, and he loved watching me and the other ladies dance. (My class currently is all women, though I have been in adult classes with men as well.) He also got to see some of the little kids dance before my class began.

The next logical step is to have him see a real ballet, on stage. But I think (know!) he's too young to sit through a performance, so it would be a waste of the ticket price.

And so we come around to this DVD. It seems to have it all: It shows a real performance by a professional ballet company. It shows little children dancing. It shows older, accomplished children (including boys!) demonstrating specific steps. I love it! I think Mikko will, too.

Enter fast for the Blush Topless Undershirt or Prima Princessa Presents The Nutcracker at Today's Give Away by Dec. 20.

Giveaway: Sodastream Fountain Jet @ Rockin Mama (12.19)

It's that time again. Hey, I'm going to keep entering for one of these suckers until I win!

Yes, Rockin Mama is giving away a Sodastream Fountain Jet home soda maker!

My husband and I do our part to recycle as much as we can, but reusable is really the best eco-friendly option. According to the site, ”the average American consumes nearly 600 bottles and cans of sparkling water and soda every year.” Much of these end up in our landfills (since we’re not a society that does a lot of recycling). Can you imagine not having any plastic bottles or aluminum cans? And, when you figure out that you could make a liter of sparkling water for 20 cents or a 12 ounce can of soda for 25 cents, it makes eco AND financial sense to use Sodastream.

Enter fast at Rockin Mama by Dec. 19.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Giveaway: Breastfeeding Week nursing clothing & books @ a modern mom's only time is naptime (12.18)

Mama Knows Breast: A Beginner's Guide to BreastfeedingIt's Breastfeeding Week at a modern mom's only time is naptime, and she's got several great nursing-related giveaways ending today!

I'm really interested in trying out some of the alternative nursing cover-up/cami options out there. I'm not a fan of the blanket or awning styles of cover-ups. If it's what a mother needs to feel comfortable nursing at all, then yes, please, use one rather than not. But I think they send the wrong message about breastfeeding. It's not something that needs to be covered up, and I'd hate for other women (like me) to be considered "indiscreet" if we don't use a cover, if covering becomes the norm. I also don't think it's possible to cover every baby or every age of a baby. I'm breastfeeding a toddler, and I'll tell you right now he wouldn't stand for a blanket over his head, except for a game of flash the boob!

So...I was intrigued by Baby Bond. It's a cover that covers you rather than the baby. The Couture version can be worn as a sort of sash, or as a belly band, depending on whether you want to pull up or down your top. I'd like to try this one out and see how fiddly it is. I'm still lazy enough that I'll probably stick with just using my hand to shield any blazing-white boobage that peeps out, but I like that this cover might be a confidence booster for women who don't feel comfortable revealing any skin, but who don't want to cover up their baby while feeding.

The other item that is interesting is the Undercover Mama Nursing Shirt. It clips onto any nursing bra, so that when you pull down your flap, the cami flap goes along. This would be useful as a more discreet form of nursing only if you're pulling up your shirt to nurse. Either way, though, the long length acts as a nice layer and will help keep your tummy covered, which I'm all for!

And, as a large-busted nursing mama, I've been on the lookout (and so have my commenters — thanks!) for nursing tanks that work well with large (or, actually, small too!) breasts and your own, supportive bra. Skinies is a great one I got to review, and Modest Middles is one I stumbled across. This looks like another that would fit the bill.

The Blush Topless Undershirt is a belly band that can be used as a layering piece; a way to nurse discreetly by, again, keeping your tummy and back covered; or as a maternity band to help keep your pants up and your belly covered during pregnancy.

So head on over today and check out Lorina's blog and all the other items she has up for review and giveaway. Lorina's pro-breastfeeding and pro-babywearing, so I know you'll enjoy poking around as much as I did!

Enter fast at a modern mom's only time is naptime by Dec. 18.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Last day to get Amazon's free Super Saver Shipping delivered by Christmas!

A friendly reminder that today, Dec. 17, is the last day you can order on Amazon and still have free Super Saver Shipping get to you by Christmas!

Free Super Saver Shipping applies to orders over $25 of items fulfilled by Amazon.com and shipped to any of the 50 U.S. states. See all restrictions here.

Amazon.com is great for those last-minute gift ideas! Hurry over and fill out the rest of your list. Normally, Super Saver Shipping and standard shipping can be slow, but Amazon expedites all packages in the holiday season to keep customers happy! Wasn't that nice?

If you miss today's cut-off, be aware that there are still shipping options available for last-minute shoppers (like me, ahem...).

Standard shipping (that you pay for) will arrive if you order by Dec. 20. For mailed gift cards, you have until Dec. 21. You can choose two-day shipping by Dec. 22, as late as 8 p.m. PST, and it's free if you sign up for Amazon Prime. One-day shipping is good till Dec. 23 at 4:30 p.m. PST. There are even some Local Express shipping options in select cities on Dec. 24.

Discounts apply to upgraded shipping if you are a member of Amazon Prime, which is free for the first month.

And, if you're really last minute, try purchasing an emailed or printable gift card on Christmas itself! See details here.

Remember that Amazon links are affiliate links, and I receive a small percentage of the purchase price if you click through a link on my sites and order something. Consider it a costs-you-nothing donation just because you like my blogging! Please see Hobo Mama's Disclosure Policy for information about affiliate links.

Giveaway: Sesame Street Inflatable Ball Pit Activity Center @ babybix (12.17)

babybix is giving away a Sesame Street Inflatable Ball Pit Activity Center from ToyQuest!

This ball pit looks too hilarious. Check out the pictures on babybix to see!

It has multiple Sesame Street characters, so if your son sings "Elmo's Song" all. day. long. (anyone? anyone?), then you know it will be a hit.

For what it's worth, Mikko is sure that Elmo is a crab, because he's red. Ergo, he calls him "the crab" rather than Elmo. I'm not sure he knows what an Elmo is.

You can play basketball with Ernie, push the ball through Big Bird, go in and out of the “doors,” or play in the pit.


All in all, this would be a great gift for the Holidays. It’s everything a kid wants - it’s BIG, it has BALLS, it has SESAME STREET characters on it, and you can jump around in it! Fun!

We've been looking for toy and activity ideas to keep Mikko entertained and active indoors throughout the winter months. This looks like another winner!

Enter fast at babybix by Dec. 17.

Giveaway: Zhu Zhu Pet @ babybix (12.17)

babybix is giving away a Zhu Zhu Pet!

If your kid is longing for a Zhu Zhu Pet, and you're feeling desperate this close to Christmas, enter this lightning giveaway for Num Nums.

I love that it's called Num Nums, because that's one of our affectionate terms for nursing! :)

You want one, your kid wants one, your friends’ kids want one, everyone wants ZhuZhu Pets right now! I was at Toys R Us, and was one of the lucky few to get one of these. Actually, we got TWO because my husband was able to get one too. So… that means one of my lucky readers is going to get a Num Nums (gray) Zhu Zhu Pet hamster! Yay!!

I thought that these just ran straight forwards in their little mazes that you can buy, but actually if you push the button on their back, they run around in random directions, and make cute noises. There is a sensor button in its nose, so it will back up and go in a different direction if it runs into anything. My dog (Chloe) wasn’t a huge fan, and I think Brandon enjoyed watching Chloe freak out more than he enjoyed the hamster itself. Haha. You can also push a button in its head to make it talk.

So there you have it. Either your kid or your pet or both will get a kick out of it!

Enter fast at babybix by Dec. 17.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Giveaway: Strider Running Bike @ Born 2 Impress (12.17)

Born 2 Impress is giving away a Strider Running Bike!

Here's another opportunity to get the one and only bike you need for kids before they are old enough to ride a regular pedal bike without training wheels. This running bike takes the place of tricycles, ride-on toys, and training-wheel bikes. It's fun, and it develops balance and confidence!

Your kid will squeal to see this under the tree on Christmas morning!

The mind behind the ingenious bike ”Ryan McEarland “ father of two boys got to the conclusion that Tricycle tip-overs" and "training-wheel wobbles" create a fear, hesitancy, and dislike of bike riding and that the traditional methods were not the best way to learn how to ride a bike…. Balance and coordination should be taught before pedaling.

Enter fast at Born 2 Impress by Dec. 17.

Cross-posting from Hobo Mama and filling the archives!

Just a little administrative post:

I intend to bring over some of my posts on the main site of Hobo Mama that have to do with product reviews and giveaways.

Don't be surprised to see the archives bulge with older articles, and in the future, don't be surprised to see cross-posting of relevant product articles on both blogs.

There will still be plenty of original material on both sites. I just didn't want to confuse anyone who thought they were seeing double!

Carry on!
Lauren (Hobo Mama)

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Giveaway: Folding Trampoline from HearthSong @ babybix (12.16)

babybix is giving away a Folding Trampoline from HearthSong!

Here's another gift that I think would be great for getting ants-in-the-pants out of young kids. Over the long winter months, sometimes you need something active to do indoors, but that doesn't take up a lot of space or endanger anyone!

HearthSong offers a Kids Folding Trampoline ($99 value) that looks perfect!

My favorite features are:
  • Handle bar. It has a handle bar so they can hold on and steady themselves but still jump really high. This also makes it safer when they are feeling off-balance and need something to grab onto.
  • Folds away. You can just tuck the legs in and take the handle off to store the whole thing under a bed or in a closet.
  • Indoor/outdoor. The finish and the mat are both waterproof, so you can use this trampoline indoors or out.
  • Padded cover. The padded cover is great so kids don’t get their feet suck in the bungee cord or slip on the frame.
  • Easy to put together! I thought this might be really hard to put together, but I did the whole thing by myself and it wasn’t bad at all!
For ages 3 and up, up to 77 pounds. Size: 33-3/4″ square, 32-1/4″ tall
The only bummer is that the low weight limit means I'm not allowed to jump on it! :(

Maybe I'll have to get a matching one so we can bounce side by side. :)

Enter fast at babybix by Dec. 16.

Giveaway: VTech Toys Jungle Gym @ MommyMandy (12.16)

MommyMandy is giving away a VTech Toys Jungle Gym bundle of four toys!

If you win, you get four VTech toys:

  1. Ride & Learn Giraffe Bike – ERP: $49.99 – Teaches toddlers (ages 18 – 36 months) letters, objects, numbers, animals and melodies through active play – the more kids pedal and bounce, the more they learn.
  2. Bouncing Colors Turtle – ERP: $29.99 - Kids will find new depths of basic skills by sitting on the Bouncing Colors Turtle and bouncing their way to developing gross motor skills and balance. Bouncing on the seat or shell of the turtle activates different colors to light up on the learning panel, teaching kids colors and shapes through its encouraging phrases, silly sounds and playful melodies.
  3. Monkey Moves Smart Seat – ERP: $29.99 – As little learners move the colorful monkey’s arms up and down, the seat’s buttons light up – helping them master colors and numbers.
  4. Twist & Learn Gorilla Pals – ERP: $14.99 - Tots will go ape over the Twist & Learn Gorilla Pals—a set of play dumbbells small and durable enough for their little hands. Tots will be entertained and learning for hours as the dumbbells encourage playful movement with their sound effects and melodies.

I'll be honest. When I first saw these toys, I thought: Will these four toys even fit in our little condo? And my second thought was about how plastic and colorful and loud it all is.

But then I thought about the loooong, rainy, cold winters, and the idea of having four ride-on, interactive toys in the house.... Well, it started looking astonishingly appealing.

I can take or leave the "educational" aspects, but if they hold my toddler's interest, well, that's worth something big right there!

I also don't think two-year-olds need bona fide exercise equipment, but...it's a fact that Sam and I are on the sedentary side, and Mikko's too young to run himself ragged all day. So I'll take any help I can get with burning off his energy, without exhausting myself!

So, if I win, I'll make room for it all. And we'll have some fun playing and exercising!

Enter fast at MommyMandy by Dec. 16.

Giveaway: TWO Safety 1st Car Seats @ J. Leigh Designz & Two of a Kind, Working on a Full House (12.15)

Here's a chance to win one (or two!) of two new convertible infant car seats from Safety 1st.

J. Leigh Designz is giving away a Safety 1st Complete Air Convertible Car Seat, and Two of a Kind, Working on a Full House is also giving away a Safety 1st Complete Air Convertible Car Seat!

The new Safety 1st Complete Air Car Seat with Air Protect technology is designed to help protect your kids in the event of a side-impact collision. The side-impact wings function like air bags to help shield young kids from the deadliest crashes.

My favorite feature, though, has to be that the rear-facing weight limit is an astonishing (by US standards) 40 pounds. It is so important to keep your kids rear facing as long as possible! This means until a child outgrows the rear-facing limits of the particular seat by either height or weight. Having a seat go up to 40 pounds means that you should get at least THREE OR MORE years of rear-facing use out of this. Even with my chunky monkey, he would still be comfortably rear facing in this seat at age 2.5 right now.

A few links on the superior safety of extended rear facing:

And a video to demonstrate the physical impact of forward-facing vs. rear-facing:

All right, so enter, win, and keep your baby safe!

Enter fast at J. Leigh Designz and Two of a Kind, Working on a Full House by Dec. 15.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Giveaway: Strider Running Bike @ Mission Mommy (12.15)

Mission Mommy is giving away a Strider Running Bike!

Wouldn't this be a wonderful gift under the tree for a toddler or preschooler?

I've mentioned before our wretched balance problems. This Strider bike might give Mikko a fighting chance to learn to ride a real bike before he graduates high school!

Either with or without training wheels at that point would be acceptable.

Learning to ride a bike is not easy for most kids. It can take years of practice on a tricycle, then a bike with training wheels. ... This bike is designed without pedals to teach little ones to balance a bike. And, that is the hardest part of the whole experience.

Naturally, the earlier you start, the better. Kids will have more time to learn the ropes, and will be on a "big kid" bike well before his preschool pals. Learning to balance a bike without having to pedal first enables them to actually figure it out naturally. Learning to balance takes more practice and is hard enough without having to coordinate pedaling to get around.

Enter fast at Mission Mommy by Dec. 15.

Giveaway: Sodastream Fountain Jet @ Loving Heart Mommy (12.18)

You guessed it. Loving Heart Mommy is giving away a Sodastream Fountain Jet home soda maker!

One lucky soul will win the Fountain Jet Soda Lover's Start-Up Kit (approx. $100 retail value). You get a choice of black/silver, white or red/silver Fountain Jet, CO2 to make over 100 liters of soda, 2 reusable carbonating bottles, a sample pack of flavors, and 3 full-sized flavors of your choice. Check out the available flavors here!

No lugging, no storing, no empties, great value!

No more carrying or storing bottles!

Drink it your way, more bubbles, less bubbles, diet, or regular! Tap water to soda in seconds!

Just a few of the rave sayings you'll see on Sodastream's website! Its all true! Just 25 cents per can of soda, 25 cents per liter of sparkling water, a fantastic value! Check out how you will be helping out the environment too with these classy soda makers that are a must have for anyone who loves soda or sparkling water!

The Fountain Jet Soda Starter Kit (ARV $100) includes the winner's choice of black/silver, white or red/silver Fountain Jet, 1 60 liter bottle of CO2, 2 reusable carbonating bottles and choice of 2 SodaMix flavors.

Enter at Loving Heart Mommy by Dec. 18.

Giveaway: Sodastream Fountain Jet @ Connected2Christ (12.15)

Connected2Christ is giving away a Sodastream Fountain Jet! Yes, that's right — it's my next opportunity to try to score one of these beauties.

The Fountain Jet Soda Lover’s Start-Up Kit (approx. $100 retail value) includes the winner’s choice of black/silver, white or red/silver Fountain Jet, CO2 to make over 100 liters of soda, 2 reusable carbonating bottles, a sample pack of flavors, and 3 full-sized flavors of the winner’s choice. Cool, huh? I so need this.

We are (ahem, I am) slightly addicted to soda, and I love the idea of making our own. It sounds like it will be fun, like it will be a cost savings, and like it will require less schlepping to the recycling center!

[T]he benefits of making your own soda or sparkling water in your home are many. Everything that Soda Stream is doing is showing their sheer love and concern for those around them as well as the environment we live in.

Enter fast at Connected2Christ by Dec. 15.

Giveaway: Zebra Pens @ Connected2Christ (12.16)

Connected2Christ is giving away a stocking full of assorted Zebra Pens!

At first I saw the title of the giveaway and thought: a pen? Would I take the time to enter for a pen?

But, no, my friends, it is a stocking full of pens.

I love pens! I'm a writer, after all. And the ones Connected2Christ reviewed sound sweet. And Zebra doesn't make just pens, but mechanical pencils, highlighters, and corrector pens as well.

Our company is as unique as the products we sell. Our mission, “To Create Users”, requires the commitment of all employees and drives us to challenge ourselves, to listen to our customers, and to deliver a promise of quality, value and innovation. Our parent company, founded in 1897, has long upheld the quality, value and innovation standards that we follow to this day.

Enter at Connected2Christ by Dec. 16.

Giveaway: Mrs. Smith's Diaper Bag @ Connected2Christ (12.15)

Connected2Christ is giving away a Mrs. Smith's Diaper Bag!

I've been hoping to score a super-cute bag. I'll be honest and say it's more to carry my laptop than diapers, since Mikko's potty trained. Now, our current diaper bag is tattered, so I would need a new one should we decide to reproduce in the future. So I figure this cutie-patootie will fulfill both functions.

What’s a mom to do? Well, I have to thank Rachael Smith, a mother 2 whom has had plenty of her own diaper bag experiences. She couldn’t find a solution, so she came up with her own very line of diaper bags called Mrs. Smith Diaper bags. An awesome line of fashionable and functional bags if I do say so myself!

You have to click over to see the fascinating organizational features of the Mrs. Smith's bags, such as a removable snack/toy drawer, and the adorable prints available. They also have straight-up black if you're a basics kind of mama (or papa!).

Enter fast at Connected2Christ by Dec. 15.

Giveaway: Sodastream Fountain Jet @ Thanks, Mail Carrier (12.18)

Well, I haven't won one yet, but I'm not giving up hope. Thanks, Mail Carrier is giving away a Sodastream Fountain Jet home soda maker!

I really, really love soda, but I'm not a big fan of the questionable ingredients or expense and environmental effects of buying so many disposable bottles and cans. That's where the SodaStream Fountain Jet comes in. As Thanks, Mail Carrier (love that she included the appropriate comma there! Geeky English major alert!) puts it:

There's something about soda that it just hits the spot sometimes. The tasty flavors, the yummy bubbles, you just can't go wrong. However, the idea of spending a large amount of money on a big case of soda or to have a 2-liter go flat before it gets finished... well, that's just old-fashioned these days. As the only ingredients in soda are just water, fizz and flavor, there should be an easier way.

In fact, there is. It's SodaStream and it is delivered right to your front door.

The Fountain Jet Soda Starter Kit (ARV $100) includes the winner's choice of black/silver, white or red/silver Fountain Jet, 1 60 liter bottle of CO2, 2 reusable carbonating bottles and choice of 2 SodaMix flavors.

Enter at Thanks, Mail Carrier by Dec. 18. Or, you know, don't. Because I want to win it.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Giveaway: Step 2 Fresh Market Kitchen @ Jolly Mom (12.13)

Jolly Mom is giving away a Step 2 Fresh Market Kitchen!

I think Mikko would love a play kitchen! He already loves playing store and clean-up — wherever we go. The security guard at Target had to tackle him for trying to use the store vacuum. We've created our own play kitchen of a sort by giving Mikko pots and bowls to mix around water and flour in. But our kitchen is narrow, and the counters are high, and it's a little hard to get it all to work. A play kitchen would give him more space to move around!

In my opinion, every child--boys and girls--should have a play kitchen. They provide children with a creative outlet and a way for kids to model mom and dad. Not to mention all of the learning opportunities to be had! Learning about food, measurements, cooking, counting, colors, and so much more!

This particular kitchen even comes with a bakery area and a working cash register and scanner, which would put Mikko over the moon!

Enter fast at Jolly Mom by Dec. 13.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Giveaway: Sodastream Fountain Jet @ News Around the Blogs (12.12)

I found another great giveaway site, and just in time, too! News Around the Blogs is giving away a Sodastream Fountain jet home soda maker!

I really have been wanting one of these soda machines for some time. Using just CO2 cartridges and flavoring, it transforms tap water into yummy sodas, including colas, diet drinks, and lots of popular flavors. The best parts to me are that the regular sodas don't have high fructose corn syrup, and the diets don't have aspartame. We've been trying to cut down on our soda consumption here because we felt like we were being a bad influence for our 2-year-old, but it's so hard, because I hate water. There, I said it. What I wouldn't give for a machine that makes soda a little cheaper, a little better for us, and a whole lot more fun!

Soda Stream is a smarter way to enjoy soda! Turn tap water into soda in 30 seconds. Not only can you make your own soda and reuse your water bottles, you can customize your soda by using a variety of flavors. I received a Soda Stream Fountain Jet. They Fountains come in either white, black/silver, or red. It fits so nicely in the small corner of your kitchen. Not only can you make soda you can also make Sparkling water! You control the fizziess. You can have a light carbonated water or a super seltzer. You can even have a lightly flavored water. How great!

Enter fast at News Around the Blogs by Dec. 12.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Giveaway: First Step Photo Vinyl Wall Art $50 Gift Card @ Grosgrain

Grosgrain is giving away a First Step Photo Vinyl Wall Art $50 Gift Card.

Decorate your home with quick & easy to apply rub on vinyl wall art and lettering!

Have the look of hand painted and stenciled words on your walls without the work!

Aren't these gorgeous? We're redecorating, but on a budget! (Who isn't??) I think these wall art pieces would be so charming.

Enter at Grosgrain. Giveaway listed Dec. 2; I'm not sure what the ending date is.

Giveaway: $100 Borders Gift Card @ Jolly Mom (12.8)

That's right — it's yet another chance! Jolly Mom is giving away a $100 gift card to Borders to two lucky winners!

Borders is really trying to get the word out about the new & expanded toys section! To enter, visit your local Borders store and tell what new offering in the toy section caught your eye and why it would be a good choice for kids today.

What really blew me away about the Toys and Games Section was how HUGE it is. I thought it would be a small area with a few toys--kind of with a boutique type feel. Not all. The Toys and Games Section in my Borders is huge and includes products from leading brands such as Melissa & Doug, Creativity for Kids, LEGO Systems, Inc, Playmobil, Scientific Explorer™, Chicco, Battat, Blue Orange Games, ALEX and many others. I can't tell you how much I loved seeing all of these awesome brands all together under one roof. It is amazing! All of the toys are handpicked for their educational benefits for ages 0 to 12 while still being FUN for babies and kids. LOVE that!

Enter at Jolly Mom by Dec. 8.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Giveaway: $50 Maukilo Toys Gift Card @ Jolly Mom (12.5)

Jolly Mom is giving away a $50 gift card to Maukilo Toys!

Rody the ride-on jumping horse looks like a good option to spend that gift card on! See the rave review at Jolly Mom.

There are toys priced within everyone's budgets too, but no matter the price--rest assured that they are always well made and SAFE. Wooden toys sold at Maukilo.com are finished with non-toxic, natural lacquers; and plastic toys are made from child-safe, PVC-free materials. Maukilo’s goal is to provide toys that are made to last, so that any toy can withstand the test of time and be passed onto the next generation. As Maukilo.com says, "Buy once. Play forever."

Enter fast at Jolly Mom by Dec. 5.