Friday, December 30, 2011

Bringing Home Baby: Tommee Tippee Review & Giveaway

Tommee Tippee is one of those companies that you trust! They have been around for such a long time and back when everyone used them. 
When we received sippy cups in the mail from them a long time ago, both my mother, Jon's mother, and Jon all recognized the name. It's a very popular brand and most everyone has heard of them!

This time I was fortunate to receive the Closer to Nature Electric Breast Pump. 
 Everything you need is included.
 It comes with the pump which plugs in OR can take batteries to make it portable. It comes with one 5oz bottle, all the necessary parts to hook the bottle up to the pump, 2, 2oz storage containers for storing in the fridge or freezer, a sterilizer case which is also great for storing everything, some breast pads and a couple extra parts.
 Everything all together, ready for pumping.
 The shield pops off easily for cleaning.
 Then this part unscrews for easy cleaning
 Then the main pump area unscrews from the bottle
 All the parts.
 Or you can leave it together and just unscrew from the bottle itself.
 The bottle, which comes with a nipple and cap.
There is also a little pod that the bottle sits in. Great for on the counter. 

So I've gotten to use this pump quite a bit since breast feeding hurts me a lot. I've been using it so I can get something in him but it's less painful for me. It works quite well! The only downfall is it's a single pump and not a double. 

You push the power button and let it go for a few minutes. It will bring on your let down, then you can choose which setting you want, setting 1 is short and frequent pumps, setting 2 is medium and frequent pumps and then setting 3 is long and semi frequent pumps. It's more powerful for 3 too. It's whatever you can handle basically. 

I find setting 2 or 3 does the best for me. I turn it on, get it to suction and latch and then turn it to level 2 or 3. Since my milk isn't in yet it is okay to not wait for let down, since there really isn't one. 

The whole pump is BPA free too which is awesome. 

One downfall is that there is only one bottle. So after each pumping session you need to pour it into another bottle to put in the fridge. 

Price: This electric pump is $129.99. Babies R Us carries it. They also have 6, 4oz storage pods with storage container for $13.99 for easier storage. 

Overall: *****. This pump works for what it's intended for!

*Disclaimer* I received an item directly from Tommee Tippee in exchange for a review. I was not paid to try out these products*
A big thank you goes out to Tommee Tippee for allowing me to review this product and offering a giveaway

Emerson Brooks birth story!

12/27 (my due date). I had an appt with my OB at 1:50 and he stripped my membranes, it hurt, but I read that if it didn't then it wasn't done right... I was still a 3 (had been for 3 weeks) and after the strip I was a 3-4 and had bulging waters. He said he'd see me that night. 
Starting at 5:30 I was having some contractions. They were pretty regular for a whole hour (about 4-6 minutes apart) then went to about 8-9 minutes, then 10-11 minutes, then back to 4-6 and so on. They did this until 11 o clock. Regular, but not consistent. Then they stopped... I figured I'd go lay down and try and get some sleep. I fell asleep around 12. I had 3 strong contractions wake me up for the next couple hours, but I was able to fall back asleep... until 3:15. 

12/28 (1 day overdue). At 3:15am I woke up with painful contractions. So I started timing... about 5-6 minutes apart and lasting upwards of 2 minutes! 
I woke up Jon at 3:40 and he said to keep timing. I timed them until 4:10 and finally woke him up and said we need to leave. They got a little stronger and I had to breathe through them, but they weren't majorly strong. They weren't that bad. 
We got everything ready and arrived at the hospital at 5:30am. I was first checked at about 6:15 and was a 6, 80% effaced and a -2 station. 
It was right around 7:15 I asked for the epidural. I was trying for a natural delivery, but I had some super strong contractions and just knew it would be best for me to get it. 
At 8:20 my dr came in and checked me again 6-7, 90% effaced and -1 station! He then broke my water!
It was 9 o clock when I felt the pressure (never felt this with my daughter so it was WEIRD). Jon paged the nurse and she checked me... 10!!!!
I went from a 7-10 in about 40 minutes!!!
They wanted me to have a few more contractions and bring him down before I started pushing. 
The nurse had me start pushing at 9:22, I pushed through 3 contractions (about 6 times) and then she paged for the dr. and a catcher! They arrived immediately and I started pushing... I kept feeling him get closer and closer and then knew he was RIGHT THERE. I pushed for about 5 minutes and about 6-7 times and he was born at 9:30am!!

Emerson Brooks born at 9:30am weighing 7lb 6oz (I guessed this number EXACTLY!) 19 3/4" long! He had a 13" head circumference. 

I tore in 1 spot that needed 3 stitches, but other than that it went perfect! So much different than with Avery where I pushed for 40 minutes. 

So from Beginning of active labor until he was out, was just about 6 hours and 15 minutes! I had a lot of prep contractions there for a while though!
So glad it's over and we're home and doing good!!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Crofter's Organic Review & Giveaway

We go through a lot of jelly/jam/spread. Avery likes a Peanut Butter sandwich every day for lunch, which half the time she likes jelly on it as well. So we go through a good amount of it. 

When I came across Crofter's I just knew I had to give them a try. So we received 4 jars for review!
We received a South America Superfruit Spread. It has Maqui and Passionfruit, Cherry and Grape in it. 
We also received a Raspberry, Pomegranate and Four Fruit Premium spreads. The Four Fruit has Raspberries, Strawberries, Currants and Cherries. 

We opened up the Four Fruit Premium Spread. It is really good. It's super easy to spread on, it's not quite like a jelly so it's not hard at all. It's really easy to spread. It tastes awesome too. It's a different kind of jelly for us. We usually just stick to Strawberry so this is different, but it's really good and the whole family seems to like it! So that's a bonus!

We haven't tried any of the other ones yet, but they all look like they're easy to spread and I'm sure they're all really great!

Crofter's has Premium, Super Fruit and Just Fruit Spreads and they have at least a few flavors of each. So they have lots of options. 

Price: 10oz jars are $3.49 online! This is an awesome price. I tried to find them in our local store, but apparently the store is closed down... so I couldn't use my free coupons and they had to send us the jars instead. 

Overall: *****

*Disclaimer* I received an item directly from Crofter's Organic in exchange for a review. I was not paid to try out these products*
A big thank you goes out to Crofter's Organic for allowing me to review this product and offering a giveaway

40 Weeks!

I have actually made it this far. I never thought I would. Since Avery came 7 days early I assumed he would too. Then I wanted to avoid Christmas and now he's doing that and then some!

Today I am officially 40 weeks! I'm due today! I don't know how I feel about it. I have mixed feelings I guess. I know he'll come when he's ready, but I also just want to be done.

I found out I was pregnant 4 days before my missed period, so I've been pregnant a LONG time and I've known about it a long time now.

I have an appt today at 1:50. We'll see what happens. I will ask for a sweep and we'll go from there. I had contractions that were 4.5-6.5 minutes apart last night for about 2 hours, then I fell asleep and when I woke up at 6am all had stopped!

I know that since I see a regular OB he'll talk induction, so I'm going to set one up for Friday morning. 1. I'm due in December so I'm having my baby in December, 2. The tax return! Might sound selfish, but at that point I'll be 3 days overdue already.

So most likely he'll be here no later than Friday evening or so!!!
I hope I'm more dilated this week too... We'll see what happens!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Bringing Home Baby: ThinkBaby Review & Giveaway

I received a sunscreen to review from ThinkBaby this summer. But they also have baby bottles. 

I was fortunate to receive the Starter Set of bottles to review. 

It comes with 2, 5oz bottles which have a slow flow (0-3 month) nipple on them. 2, 9oz bottles which have a medium flow (3-6 month) nipple on them and then it includes 2 additional fast flow (6-12 month) nipples. 

So it really is a great starter set. I do remember with Avery though that she never went beyond the slow flow nipples on any bottle. The medium she would gag on the milk. So I may not be using all the nipples. But it's nice that they're included. 

The nipple is anti-colic and is all one piece, it's also a medical grade silicone. 

What I REALLY like about the bottle though is that it can later be transformed into the sippy cup just by buying the Conversion Kit which  comes with a sippy handle and 2 spouts. 

Price: The Starter set is $19.99 which isn't bad for 4 bottles at all.  The Conversion kit is $6.99. I think this is worth it for making them a sippy down the road.

Overall: *****

*Disclaimer* I received an item directly from ThinkBaby in exchange for a review. I was not paid to try out these products*
A big thank you goes out to ThinkBaby for allowing me to review this product and offering a giveaway

Newborn Cloth Diaper Celebration!

Here are the other blogs joining me for this wonderful event!

This event will take place the whole month of January. It's from the 1st-31st! It will focus on Newborns and Cloth. Each blogger will either have a newborn or will be pregnant and talking about cloth diapering!

I will have the newest newborn I think. Since he isn't even here yet!! My first few posts may be up late. 

Each blog must post at least ONE giveaway per week and must post at least ONE other post about their experiences with newborns and cloth diapering. What's working, what isn't. When the One Size begin to fit etc. 
Each blog will have giveaways that will either be Newborn diapers or OS diapers. And even I have some accessories to give away as well!

Should be lots of fun!
Here's my Sponsors for this event!

BumLuxury is donating an XS Fuzzibunz

Buggy Baby Bottoms is donating a Custom Diaper

Cloth Baby is donating Rash Magic Wipes Solution and 2 Tiny Tush Wipes

Crabby Rabbit is donating an Item of Choice

Softbums is donating an Omi of Choice AND a Pod of Choice

Go Bananas Baby is donating a Custom Slot, NB diaper in Fabric of Choice

Cloth Canoe is donating a $20 Certificate

Baby Belle Bottoms is donating a GroVia AIO through a FB giveaway

Emotibums is offering 20% off and Free Shipping to the First 5 orders

Should be lots of fun here for this wonderful event!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Bringing Home Baby: Paige Lauren Review & Giveaway

High Quality baby clothes is a nice thing to have, it's hard when they outgrow items in 1-3 months or so though. Sometimes it's just nicer to pick up cheapy things on clearance and then pass them on when they get outgrown. 

But it's always nice to have a few good quality items in your baby's closet and Paige Lauren understands this!

We received the Classic Romper with Footsie in the Slate Color
I love that it has the hand flaps. Great to prevent a baby from scratching their face.
 The feet are so cute!
 Makes for easy diaper changes.
 I also love that the neck unsnaps on both sides. Makes for taking it off and putting it on easy and you can also slide baby in from the top if you wish!
I Love the color of this romper. It's a gorgeous grey. I like the different patterns on it too. The body is stripes and the feet and arms are dotted.

This comes in 6 colors too! Which is great. It also comes in sizes from NB up through 12-18 month.

It's a fairly thin material, but it's really nice and warm at the same time. It takes up very little space in the closet/drawer or diaper bag though because it's kind of thin! All the snaps are Nickel and Lead Free so that's kind of nice as well. 

Paige Lauren carries lots of other items as well
And more!

Price: The Romper I received is $46!

Overall: *****

*Disclaimer* I received an item directly from Paige Lauren in exchange for a review. I was not paid to try out these products*
A big thank you goes out to Paige Lauren for allowing me to review this product and offering a giveaway

Hanna's Candles Review & Giveaway

I'm a serious Candle Fanatic. You can always find 1-2 on my counter that have been used and burnt, and you can usually find at least 10 more scattered throughout my house waiting to be burned. I have candles everywhere, I think they're a great way to make a room smell good, but also to create an ambiance in the room. 

I was very fortunate to review 3 candles from Hanna's Candle Company. NOW, Hanna's is many different brands in one, so there's going to be a few links here. I received a Kathy Ireland Sugared Pecan Pie candle! I also received a Caramel Pecanabon Cinnabon Candle as well as a Natural Soy Banana Nut Bread candle!

We started with the Cinnabon. SO delicious smelling!!! You can clearly tell I love baking scents though, they are awesome!!

The cinnabon was burned daily for almost 1.5 weeks straight. When we burn a candle we burn it for 8 hours+ a day, so a long lasting candle for sure. It says 75-85 hour length! I'd for sure say that was accurate! 

The Banana Nut Bread is next. We're still working on it. It definitely smells just like you've been baking. In fact the first day I lit it, Jon came home and thought I had made banana bread. Poor man, he was so excited!! That's how good it smells though. Nice and Yummy!

We haven't started the Kathy Ireland Shaker one yet, but it smells very good and I'm sure it will burn just as nicely. 

All these candles burned/burning nice and evenly. Nothing left behind which is the way it should be. 

They have a TON of scents and series to choose from. They have Jolly Rancher candles. Almond Joy, Mr Goodbar! So yummy. Such Diversity. 

Price: They are cheap, that's the best part! The Kathy Ireland is $6.99, Cinnabon is $12.99 and they have other scents that are mostly $4.99! Great prices. 

Overall: *****

*Disclaimer* I received an item directly from Hanna's Candles in exchange for a review. I was not paid to try out these products*
A big thank you goes out to Hanna's Candles for allowing me to review this product and offering a giveaway

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Cascade Ice Review & Giveaway

I thoroughly enjoy sparkling water. It's better for you than pop (soda) and tastes just as good. 

I had the chance to review a 5 pack from Cascade Ice and I really enjoyed them.
I also got a pen and a keychain! 
I received Pink Grapefruit, Orange Mango, Strawberry Lemonade, Lemonade and Coconut. 

Neither of us are coconut fans... I drank the Pink Grapefruit first. It was so good. I love Grapefruit and this was just like the fruit but a bit sweeter. Then it was Orange Mango and Strawberry Lemonade, both very good! I love the fruit flavors. Jon tried the lemonade, but it was too tart, even for my tastes it was...

And I just now opened up the coconut to try before writing this review and I'm actually surprised. It's very good. I didn't think it would be, but it is!! So that was a nice change. It just has a very slight taste of coconut to it. 

I love that these are only 2 calories. Don't recommend drinking more than 2 a day, but at least they won't add calories to your diet! They're also 0 carbs! They're made with juice too. This coconut has Pear Juice in it. 

They're pretty good for you. If your child likes to drink pop then this is a good alternative. It will give them that sparkle that they like, but be much healthier for them!

They have a TON of flavors to choose from too. Wild Berry, Raspberry Black Current, Key Lime Lulo Pear, Strawberry Guava, Blueberry Watermelon, Huckleberry Blackberry and Strawberry Chocolate (YES PLEASE) Just to name a few that sound good to me! They have LOTS of other flavors as well.

Price: Their 12 packs are $16! This doesn't seem like that much to me. It is a bit pricey, but it's worth it for the health factor. 

Overall: *****

*Disclaimer* I received an item directly from Cascade Ice in exchange for a review. I was not paid to try out these products*
A big thank you goes out to Cascade Ice for allowing me to review this product and offering a giveaway

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Bringing Home Baby: Hevea Review

Pacifiers are important. 
Hevea understands this. They don't just make pacifiers though. They also have a teether and some bath toys, as well as a pacifier bag and clip. 

We received a Pacifier and the Bath Toys for review.
 Bath toys! Fish, Duck and Frog.
 Round Pacifier in a size Small (0-3 month)
 We got the Crowns!
They have 4 designs on the pacifier. They have a Flower Orthodontic, the Crown Round, Car Orthodontic and Star and Moon Orthodontic. So the Crown is the only round one!

They come in 2 sizes a 0-3 or a 3+ month. 

The bath toys, teether and pacifiers are made from 100% natural rubber. Free from BPA, PVC and Phthalates. 

The Pacifiers are ergonomically shaped so they don't interfere with the nose and breathing. They are also all one piece so dirt and bacteria can't accumulate. They are guaranteed to last a minimum of 2 months!

Avery loves the bath toys too. It seems the most simple of items are the most fun and these are her new favorite bath toy! But baby can use them too in just a few short months. I also think they'd be great for not in the bath. It's a one piece solid rubber toy. Nothing screams bath about that!
And check out the adorable Panda Teether. He has 2 sides to him. A bumpy side and a smoother side. 
Price: The Teether is $13.50. Pacifiers are $8.95 and right now for each one purchased they will donate $1 to the CJs foundation! The 3 bath toys are $29.99!

Overall: *****
*Disclaimer* I received an item directly from Hevea in exchange for a review. I was not paid to try out these products*
A big thank you goes out to Hevea for allowing me to review this product