Trendy Mom Reviews
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Tuesday, September 27, 2016

My Top 3 Favorite Baby Shower Gifts

My Top 3 Favorite Baby Shower Gifts
My husband and I are both obsessively clean and anti-clutter around our house.  It drives us crazy to have clutter laying around. Of course, with a newborn, there are many items that end up taking space. We are very careful about not going overboard, so when I share our favorite baby shower gifts, I consider them to truly be among the best gifts because we love using them and feel that they are worth the space!

The first item is the Boppy Pillow. The iconic Boppy® Pillow is one of Boppy’s top sellers. This versatile nursing pillow lifts baby to a more ergonomic position for comfortable breastfeeding and bottle-feeding, giving relief to arms and back and then transitions to a propping, tummy time and sitting pillow. We have the Boppy Pillow in the Sevile print and then an extra slipcover.  My husband and I both love this pillow. It's really interesting because I am very thin compared to my husband and the pillow hugs my body and is really comfortable.  My husband is bigger than me and athletic shape as he exercises at least an hour a day, yet the Boppy Pillow also fits his body type really well.  It's nice that it is interchangeable between the two of us!

Another one of our favorite baby gifts included diapers in size 1. Who knew that our baby would skip size newborn?! We were grateful that some of our family and friends new that it was possible that our baby could outgrow size newborn diapers quickly. It was nice to have a stash of size 1 diapers on hand!  On top of being convenient, there are so many diapers that come in adorable prints. Honest’s NEW diaper prints ($13.95) feature red elephants and blue donkey’s holding hands in recognition of the upcoming presidential election. The super-absorbent, ultra soft, hypoallergenic are made without chlorine processing and additives like fragrances, lotions, and latex. All prints are available now at in sizes newborn to 6.

The third item is the Boppy Lounger. This product is for babies up to 16 pounds, the highly-rated Boppy® Newborn Lounger is a perfect “hang” spot when you need to take baby out of your arms. It’s lightweight, soft, cushy and with its uniquely designed recessed interior, perfect for a baby’s bottom. Personally, I love how soft and cozy this lounger is to keep my baby comfortable. It's fun to watch him lounge in comfort. I could stare at him all day and night as he happily relaxes!

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Friday, September 23, 2016

A Checklist for Moms of Newborns #FormulaForHappiness #HappyGerberBaby

A Checklist for Moms of Newborns #FormulaForHappiness #HappyGerberBaby
My baby is due tomorrow and I just can't sleep!  I know that I should try my hardest to get a good night of rest, but our little family is about to be complete and I can't wait to meet my baby.  Plus, my morning sickness has no boundaries and woke me up from a sound sleep. That brings me to this post where I thought that I would share my personal checklist for moms of newborns.  I've done so much research to prepare for my baby and am happy to share with others.

I previously shared my hospital bag checklist, but this post is different as it focuses on things to have ready for when you return home from the hospital.  Let's get started!

1. Crib and bedding: Be sure to wash all of your crib bedding and prepare the crib so that you have a safe and clean location for your baby.

2. Clothing: Wash all of the baby's clothing and blankets in fragrance-free laundry detergent.  Personally, my older son had a rash from an allergic reaction to the hospital blankets and clothing, so it was great that we took precautions before went to the hospital and had already washed his clothing and blankets at home in detergents for sensitive skin.

3. Stock up on diapers: Diapers are surprisingly tricky because many babies grow out of size "newborn" quickly. My first baby outgrew them within a couple of weeks and my husband had to make an emergency run to get size 1 diapers.  I have even heard of babies who completely skip the newborn size and go straight to size 1 from birth!  You will eventually use the size 1 diapers, so it's convenient to stock up on them before you bring the baby home.

4. Use a humidifier if you are in a dry climate: We didn't realize that our first baby would need a humidifier. My husband and I were fine without one, so it never occurred to us.  We quickly thought that our son was sick and took him to his pediatrician only to find out that he simply needed a humidifier!  It was a quick and easy fix, but we wish that we would have known and prepared ahead of time so that he wouldn't have suffered for the first few days.

5. Sanitize your bottles, nipples, and pacifiers:  You won't want to simply open the boxes of your bottles and pacifiers to pass them to your baby.  It's a good idea to sanitize them by following the instructions to boil them in a pot or use a microwave sterilizer.  This is great to do before you get home from the hospital.

6. Have friends and family create a schedule: If you have friends and family who are willing to help, ask someone to coordinate a schedule for whatever you need. For instance, we had friends who took turns bringing us dinner. It was such a relief to be taken care of and to have a nice dinner to look forward to in the evenings.

7. Do your research on formula: Personally, my first baby had a sensitive stomach. I think that he inherited this from me because my mom said that I had a sensitive stomach as a baby too.  There are  different formulas out there, but after all of my research, we ended up using Stage 1 Gerber® Good Start® Infant Formula because it uses proteins that were not harsh on the baby’s stomach. Personally, we bought this formula at Kroger and Target. Here is a photo of it on the shelf at Target:

We are stocked up on this formula for our second baby since I learned that this formula worked well for my previous son.

8. Set up an area in your kitchen with bottles and formula: Newborns have no respect for time. I always joked that my son was so happy to enter the world that he couldn't stop partying!  While he woke up every few hours around the clock, he was particularly energetic around 11pm to 2 am.  My husband and I took turns sleeping during the first three intense months.  We felt like we were constantly running to the kitchen to make new bottles of formula.  Setting up a nicely organized area in the kitchen for our baby supplies was a lifesaver.  This time around, we are ready with a great setup.   We store most of our bottles in the cabinet. We then have a few clean bottles and Stage 1 Gerber® Good Start® Infant Formula on the counter so that everything is ready to go as soon as we need it.   We also have a convenient bottle drying rack. I think that it looks cute, but it's also practical! 

I hope that you enjoyed these tips!  In addition to sharing my personal tips, let me also share a link for $6 off of the Stage 1 Gerber® Good Start® Infant Formula (for cans of size 22.2 ounces or larger) that we are using. Babies are expensive, so it's really nice to have good coupons like this for $6 off.  At this time of year, use the coupon at Kroger or Target and then rationalize that you just saved $6 and treat yourself to a Pumpkin Spice Latte. After all, it's easy to rationalize the special treat since you are sleep deprived! 

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(Win it!) Freshen Your Home Decor with Hallmark Home #LoveHallmark

Fall is officially here!  We are celebrating here in the Dallas/Fort Worth metro as temperatures are now in the 80's. This is my favorite time of year to freshen our home decor with a few new items.  This year is all about neutral colors.  In today's post, I'll tell you about the new Hallmark Home product line and make it extra fun by giving you the opportunity to enter for a chance to win a prize pack courtesy of Hallmark!

Hallmark believes home is more than just four walls and a roof. It’s where we honor our favorite traditions, make new memories together and let our personality shine through our décor. Personally, I have pillows in the photo above because we love neutral colors for our home decor this year. The Gratefully Blessed pillow is perfect for us because I recently brought my baby home from the hospital. 

The second pillow is the Brown and White Ombre 20x20 Throw Pillow also matches our neutral color theme. 

I love these pillows because we spend a lot of time at home with our newborn baby and the Gratefully Blessed saying and soft fabrics are perfect for the many memories that we create as a family. We take a lot of photos in our living room since we have a newborn, so this decor is perfect for the backdrop of many of our photos.  Plus, we love the fresh look in our living room!

Win it!
One lucky winner will receive a Stir In Extra Love Tea Towel (set of 2) from the Hallmark Home collection. 

Enter for a chance to win by using the Rafflecopter below. The winner must have a U.S. shipping address. No P.O. boxes. The winner will have 72 hours to reply to our email with their shipping address. Otherwise, we will select a different winner. Thanks to Hallmark for sponsoring this giveaway. Good luck!
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Thursday, September 22, 2016

Child Passenger Safety Week: Important information that was news to me!

I'm happily celebrating the birth of my baby.  He is my second baby and our family is now complete. We are all over-the-moon and in love with him.  We have been preparing for his arrival for months, including setting up his nursery, selecting special outfits for him, and more.  However, I realized that we made a really big mistake that caught me off guard when we were informed by a nurse at the hospital -- car seats expire!  I had a new car seat for my husband's car, but had planned on reusing a car seat from my older son in my car.  This was a dangerous mistake and I am grateful that we learned about the expiration date before using an older car seat.   In today's post, I want to share some important Car Seat Safety Tips for Child Passenger Safety Week. 

I want to thank the Diono brand for allowing me to use and share information that they created for Child Passenger Safety Week. Personally, I use a Diono Radian rXT car seat for my baby.

Let's start with some facts. Did you know that according to the CDC, accidents are the leading cause of death among children in the United States? September 18-24, 2016 is Child Passenger Safety Week, an annual event put together by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administrations (NHTSA) to raise awareness for car seat safety.

With this year's remembrance, Diono will share 10 different car seat safety tips socially and through its blog, to teach parents the ins and outs of car seat safety from a Certified Child Passenger Safety Technician, Allana Pinkerton.

Now let's check out some helpful infographics.

Here are some important facts that you should review and share with other moms during this special week of Child Passenger Safety Week.

It is important that you do not skip the booster. I have an older child and we use a booster seat.

Always be sure to pay close attention to harness. It's critical to have a good fit. Personally, our local fire station was kind enough to double check that we had our son correctly fitted.

Here are more details about the harness.

It's also a good idea to use the tether with a forward-facing car seat.

We hope that you will share these tips with other moms because Child Passenger Safety Week is a great time to review important safety information for our little ones.  Visit Diono to learn more.
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(Win it!) The Very Fluffy Kitty, Papillon #PapillonTheKitty

If you have a little one, I'm going to take a guess that they love cats because I know how much my own child loves cats. It's adorable that he played "cats" with his friends in both his 3-year old and 4-year old preschool classes. I actually remember having to teach him to do a different "cat crawl" that involved lifting his knees off of the ground because we went through over a dozen pairs of pants as he would crawl around pretending to be a cat and cause holes in the knees. It has been cat mania at our house for a while now!

When I saw a trendy new book - The Very Fluffy Kitty, Papillon, I knew that my son and friends would love it. Plus, I also have a younger child who I am sure will love cats shortly too! In today's post, I'll tell you about this trendy book and give the opportunity for one lucky reader to win a fun prize pack!

By A.N. Kang
Release: September 6, 2016
For ages 3-5

The Very Fluffy Kitty, Papillon is a picture book that is perfect for ages 3 to 5. The book contains whimsical art and airy text that come together seamlessly in this delightful debut by A. N. Kang – the first in the new Papillon series about a kitty so fluffy, he floats! Papillon is a very fluffy kitty. So fluffy that he’s lighter than air! His owner tries to weigh him down, but Papillon just wants to fly. One particularly sunny day, he floats right out the window! Exploring the wide world is exhilarating, but it’s also a little scary. Will his new friend, a bird, be able to help him find his way home?

This trendy book is by A. N. Kang ( who was born in a little town in South Korea, with endless rice fields around her house. She grew up entertaining herself with picturebooks, and drew constantly. After moving to the United States as a teenager, she graduated from art school and began to design jewelry, greeting cards, and holiday installations all over New York City. She now lives and works in New Jersey with her sassy cat, Papillon. This is Kang’s debut.

We hope that you enjoy this trendy book with your little ones are able to create fun childhood memories with them and this whimsical book!

Win it!

I partnered with Disney-Hyperion to offer this giveaway. One lucky winner will receive the following:

  • a copy of The Very Fluffy Kitty, Papillon
  • a $50 Petco Gift Card
  • and a set of branded Magnet Cat Doll Sheets
Enter using the Rafflecopter below. The winner must have a U.S. shipping address. No P.O. boxes.  The winner will have 72 hours to respond to our email with their shipping address or we will select a different winner. Good luck. Prizing and samples provided by Disney-Hyperion.
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Fly away with Papillon at
Get social and follow Disney-Hyperion on Twitter and Instagram
Add DisneyBooks on Snapchat
Follow #PapillonTheKitty for more fun!

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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Recipe: Easy Mini Chicken Pot Pie Muffins

Recipe: Easy Mini Chicken Pot Pie Muffins
Ingredients for filling:
  • 1 can of cream of chicken
  • 3/4 cup of milk
  • 1 pound of chicken breasts
  • 1 bag of frozen vegetables (we used carrots and peas)
  • 2 medium potatoes (chopped into small ~1/4" to 1/2" chunks)
  • 2 cans of biscuit dough
1. Add all of the ingredients above with the exception of the biscuit dough to your slow cooker and cook on low for 4 hours (or until everything is cooked thoroughly).
2. Chop or shred chicken and mix all of the ingredients again.
3. Spray muffin pans with cooking spray so that the dough does not stick.  Press biscuit dough into the muffin pans, shaping it so that it is easy to add 2 TBSP of the filling to each.
4. Fill each biscuit with approximately 2 TBSP of filling.  (The more that you are able to fit in, the better.)  You will have leftover filling in your Crockpot.  Save this because you may want to offer the extra to guests that prefer extra filling on the side of their plate.
5. Bake for approximately 15 minutes at 400-degrees.
6. Cool and serve with the extra filling.
Personally, we love this recipe because it tastes great, looks nice, and includes all of the food groups!  It's really easy to vary the amount of ingredients if you prefer extra chicken or a higher ratio of veggies.

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Recipe: Easy Rocky Road Pancakes

Recipe: Easy Rocky Road Pancakes
  • 2 cups Original Bisquick mix
  • 1 Tablespoon of cocoa powder
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup of miniature marshmallows (cut into halves or fourths)
  • 1/4 cup of chopped walnuts
1. Stir the Bisquick mix, cocoa powder, milk, and eggs with whisk until thoroughly blended.

2. Stir in the chocolate chips, miniature marshmallows, and walnuts.

3. Add 1/4 cup of batter to a hot griddle and cook until edges are brown on each side.

4. Optionally serve with extra chocolate chips and marshmallows on top.
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Recipe: Tropical Caprese

Recipe: Tropical Mango Caprese

  • 1/2 ripe mango
  • 2 Roma tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup of small Mozzarella balls
  • 1/8 cup of spring lettuce mix
  • 1 teaspoon of basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon of cracked black pepper
  • light misting of olive oil (or light drizzle if you do not have an olive oil mister)
  • light drizzle of Balsamic glaze
1. Slice your tomatoes into 1/4" slices with a sharp knife and then layer the lettuce and tomato into each serving dish.

2. Score the mango into small pieces with a sharp knife.  Once you score the mango, carefully use a knife to remove the mango chunks from the skin. Add a layer of mango chunks to each serving dish.

3. Add a layer of mozzarella, mist lightly with olive oil, sprinkle with basil and cracked black pepper, and drizzle a light layer of Balsamic glaze.

4. Enjoy immediately or refrigerate.

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