Thursday, June 28, 2012

Scientific Seamstress Review and Giveaway

So, most of you know by now that I am really getting into sewing and all sorts of other crafty stuff.  Well, I decided to get in contact with Scientific Seamstress about doing a pattern review and giveaway seeing that a lot of you seemed to really enjoy reading about my adventures with crafting.

After I contacted her, the first thing she said was that she had the perfect pattern for me.  The pattern is for Poofy Pants.  When I read the description, I knew she was absolutely right about it being perfect for me.  These pants are made to be larger to accommodate fluffy bums!  How perfect is that for cloth diaper users!  Now there are a few pants out there that you can purchase that are made for fluffy bums, but I also wanted to try my hand at making some!  So, I was SUPER excited to get this pattern!

I was itching and itching to make this, but of course, life keep coming and I was having a hard time finding time to get down to my sewing machine and start.  But once I started, I loved that I did!!!  This pattern is so well put together!!!  The directions are super simple to follow!!!  They even include pictures!  I love when patterns come with pictures.  That way if I get a little confused on what they are talking about, well, I am very easily helped out when there are pictures to go along with the steps.  I don't think that these pants could have been any easier!  Also, I would like to mention that these only took me about a half an hour to make!  Yes, they are THAT easy!

They also come to show you how to make them reversible, so your time spent is totally awesome because you really get two pairs of pants in one!!!  How awesome is that!?!?!?  That drastically cuts down the time that I have to spend sewing up clothes for Dan!

And, if you don't believe me about how cute these turn out, here is a picture of the finished pair that I made!!

Would you like to win one of Scientific Seamstress' amazing patterns???  Well, today is your lucky day!!!

This review was written by Nicki

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Jiggs of Maine Review

Today I am going to tell you about a new pocket diaper that has just come out from Jiggs of Maine.

This is what the owner has to say about Jiggs:
The name Jiggs is taken from a great song by Josh Ritter and has no significance other than its catchy ring. Lots of diaper companies like to cutsey up their brand with baby-talk names, cartoon characters and stories about what their baby called his diapers when he was little. I didn't want any of that. What I wanted was a sturdy, attractive diaper that my husband or grandmother could figure out without busting my wallet. I wanted a diaper that could compete with the national brands in performance without the same ruinous effect on my budget. I wanted a one size diaper that didn't seem out of reach for an ordinary family. I think Jiggs is all those things. Give one a try and see if you agree.
 Well, first of all, I would love to tell you about the pricing.  Yup, only $13.50 for a pocket diaper!  Pretty cool huh!?!?  And no, you are not losing quality over paying a cheaper price, trust me!

This pocket diaper comes with two microfiber inserts.  You can use one during the day and two during nap or nighttime.  I tried this out early in the morning, so I only used one.  And trust me, it worked just as well as the other, more expensive, diapers!

The fit of this diaper is amazing.  There is so many ways to customize the diaper to get the perfect fit on your little one.  There is four different rise settings, cross over tabs, you name it, this diaper has got it.

I will admit that when I first looked over this diaper, I was kind of leery about how small the pocket opening was in the back, but because it has elastic on both of the pocket opening sides, it was super easy to stuff.  Also, the inserts didn't even think about poking out!

All in all, this diaper is fabulous!  If you don't trust me, you might want to go get one to try out!  If you do trust me, still go get one and try it out!  There are GREAT bright colors to choose from that there is a diaper for everyone!  From pink and purple to blue and red!  And of course, yellow!

You can check out Jiggs of Maine by clicking on the link!

You can also like Jiggs of Maine on Facebook!

*This review was written by Nicki.  I was sent a pocket diaper, free of charge, to review.*

Monday, June 25, 2012

Author: Edward Medina Spotlight

Before I tell you a little bit about the Edward Medina Books, I figured that I would start off by giving you his biography, so here it is!

Edward Medina is a native New Yorker now living in Orlando, Florida by way of Atlanta, Georgia and London, England. He was raised by his mother and grandmother to believe that life is an adventure best lived to the fullest. To that end Edward has lived his life on the edge of creative possibility.

Over time, he has been a radio and voice over artist. He built a significant career as a producer, director and writer for both digital media and the New York Off and Off - Off Broadway stages. He also had the honor and the privilege to work for the late great Jim Henson. He then went on to become a theme park designer. For fun, he became a steam train engineer and since childhood, a sometime magician.

Although, at this point in his life the magic he creates is more for the page as a YA author of high fantasy, dark horror, and epic steampunk adventures.

Edward's current works include the first novel in the Mathias Bootmaker and the Keepers of the Sandbox Trilogy, It Is Said. The book was well received and has been graced with seventeen five star reviews to date. His gothic poem, The Emperor's Nocturne, was selected for inclusion in the horror anthology Enter At Your Own Risk. This book has been honored with a nomination by the Horror Writers Association for their Bram Stoker Award. A Murder of Crows, his latest release, is the first in a series of novellas under the title Adventures of the X Pirates. In addition, his short story, The Conversation, was selected for inclusion in the horror anthology Satan's Toybox: Terrifying Teddies.

Edward is very much looking forward to completing more of his epic fantasies, along with other tales and poems, of journeys and adventures, both light and dark. Work has already begun on 13 Stories Short, a collection of short stories that have been rattling around in his head, The Academy Darke, the next book in the Mathias Bootmaker Trilogy, and The Demise of Foxy Jack, the next installment in the continuing adventures of the X Pirates. 

Now, for my views on Edward. I have read the first book of the Mathias Bootmaker and the Keepers of the Sandbox Trilogy , It Is Said (which by the way is FREE until tomorrow 6/26/12...just click on the link!)  This was the first thing I read from this author and I have to say that I became HOOKED!  I started reading this book not knowing what to expect...and I got such a huge amazing surprise from it!  If you like books where you never know what is going to happen next, this is a great book for you!  Mathias is a very confused person in this book.  He has lost his memory on who he is and where he is.  While reading this book, you get to go on the journey with him!  Well, I don't want to give away too much of either of the books, so that is about as much summary as I am going to give you hehe.  I know that I just can not WAIT for the next one to come out!!!!

Well, while I was looking for a great book, I just happened to find out that Edward Medina put out the first installment of the X Pirates, A Murder of Crows (link to buy!!!).  And WOW is all I can say about this.  I enjoyed Mathias' journeys, but this was even more amazing!  I read it in just a few hours because I was so hooked.  And, I pretty much am a slow poke reader, especially when I love something.  I don't want it to end!  And when The Murder of Crows ended, I was SOOOO upset!  I seriously don't know if I can wait until the next installment!  I need to know what, now.  Haha.  Anyways, so this takes you on another journey, but this journey is a little different.  It is about circus animals...yes, that is right, the animals can talk and everything.  I think it is kind of like a Narnia, but at the same time, way different.  But it hooks you just like Narnia did to me!  Seriously, give it a shot, I bet you will love it too.  And at $.99, where the heck can you go wrong?

Don't have a Kindle???  NO PROBLEM!  You can read these books on your computer as well!!!

Also, Edward Medina has his own website where you can find out more!  Love Edward Medina???  You can also find him on Facebook where you can hear of all the upcoming amazing new things!

*This review was written by Nicki.  I was in no way compensated for this post and all opinions are of my own.  I personally purchased both books and then asked the author for permission to use his biography which he agreed to.*

Jelly Bear Boutique Review and Giveaway

Today I am going to review a fitted diaper from Jelly Bear Boutique!  Jelly Bear Boutique is a BRAND NEW shop on Etsy!!!  She currently only makes fitted diapers, but the are FABULOUS fitted diapers.  I am going to start off my showing you how fabulous they are.  Here is what it says in the description of the diapers so you can see what kind of absorbency these diapers have:
This diaper is constructed of:
hand dyed (by me) cotton velour wings,
Cotton knit or woven outer
Bamboo/Cotton french terry hidden layer 
white cotton velour inner layer for babies comfort.
Snap Down rise

Comes with 2 snap together inserts each made with 2 layers bamboo french terry topped with cotton velour. Both inserts can be snapped into the diaper together or used separately allowing you to customize absortion. This diaper also comes with a 2 layer Bamboo/Cotton fleece doubler that can be folded in half or thirds and placed in wet zone.
The fitted diaper with all three inserts

How you can snap the two snap in inserts onto the diaper 

How the diaper looks from the inside with all three inserts laying flat

So, I am sure that after you read that, I really don't even need to say much more about how amazingly absorbent these are.  But, I will anyways.  This fitted diaper lasted every test that I put it to.  The overnight, nap, long errand run, EVERYTHING!  This diaper is definitely a superior diaper!

Front view of the diaper

Back view of the diaper
The diaper I got is also pretty darn cool!  The diaper has Space Invaders on it...and who does not love Space Invaders!?!?!?  Even hubby loves the way this diaper looks.  We have definitely used this diaper without a cover just to show it off :-)

Also, can I tell you about this fit!?!?  For a OS Fitted diaper...this thing is pretty darn slim.  When you put all the inserts in, it can get a little fluffy...but AWESOME...fluffy usually means it is working AMAZING be honest...I like the fluffy bum look for most of the time!

This is definitely a diaper that has my full approval!  And now, you get a chance to win your own fitted diaper from Jelly Bear Boutique!!!

This review was written by Nicki

Friday, June 22, 2012

BabyBumBumProducts Review and Giveaway

Today I am going to review a new Etsy Shop and her AIO diapers from Baby Bum Bum Products.

I got sent an AIO in size small/medium to review.  The first thing I want to point out is the color of this diaper.  It is SUCH a bright yellow!  I love it!  Perfect for spring and summer!!!  She really picked out a great diaper to send for the season, that's for sure!

Also, the sewing on this diaper is flawless.  You can tell that she takes her time to make up these diapers.  I have seen SO MANY different diapers out there, and there is a lot of times where you have to pick things off the diapers from the sewing and cut loose strings...but not this diaper.  Like I said, flawless!

The wings are shaped a bit differently then what I am used to, but I have to admit that I think I really like this style for the wings.  It seems to allow a better, closer fit then then some of the other wings I have tried.  Also, I think it might have made me like velcro a bit more :-D

As for the absorbency, this diaper is pretty darn good!  I was not able to use it overnight successfully, however, I was able to use it on a long lunch date and also used it successfully for nap time.  So, really, the absorbency is great, just need to add a stay dry doubler for overnight (which I tried successfully!!!).

Also, I want to note, that this is diaper dries SO fast for an AIO!!!  I was so impressed when I went to check on it the first time and it was dry!!!  I was so happy!!!!!!  Usually it takes FOREVER for an AIO to dry, not Baby Bum Bum Product AIO's!

Also, the owner of this shop is super sweet!  I really appreciate her fast responses.  I never felt left in the dark about anything while working with her!

All in all, this shop is definitely one to check out!!!  Now, you even have a chance to win a diaper of your choice from her shop!!!

This review was written by Nicki

Thursday, June 21, 2012

The good, the bad, and the ugly!

Well, I figured I would update you all on everything going on.

Just thought I would start off with that Daniel, now 8 months old, is thriving!!!!  He is even starting to get a little chunk on him!!!  I love that he is doing so well.  Since posting last about everything that we went through, he has only had one shaking episode...which is fabulous!  We are hoping that we never have to see it again though.  He is now catching up to his normal size too!!!  He is in 6-9 month clothing!!!  Yay!!!!  Oh, I just LOVE to have good news!!!

And some more good news!!!  Lucas is almost three and his speech is FINALLY starting to move!!!  He now has about 25 words and we continue to add new words at least once a month!!!!!  MUCH better than his no words 8 months ago!!!!!

Now for the bad...JayJ's Law was not a success in NY state.  I am actually FLOORED by this!  I can't believe that ANYONE would ever vote no for this!!!!  But, JayJ's guardian is NOT giving up!  She stated that she will try again.  For anyone that missed about JJ...this poor little boy was beaten by his father at just a few months of age.  He suffered a few broken bones and a HORRIBLE epileposy from it because he got Shaken Baby Syndrome from it.  This poor boy will life with this for the rest of his life...while his father only got 1-4 years....and this is his second offence of child abuse!  JayJ's Law was hoping to change that and increase the minimum for repeat offenders of child abuse.

Also, as some of you already know, my Aunt has been diagnosed with Breast Cancer.  She has had three surgeries now and chemo has been put off until she gets over the infection that she has from the breast augmentation.  If you have not realized yet, I will be having an auction on the facebook page to benefit her due to major medical bills and both my aunt and uncle not working right now. Also, please remember to pray for her speedy recovery.

And the ugly?  Well, poor Derek is back in the hospital.  If anyone was wondering, this boy was a perfectly healthy boy until about 7 months ago when he was first sent to the hospital.  He was there for about 2 weeks.  He has been diagnosed with systemic juvenile idiopathic arthritis and an unknown blood disorder...we are hoping and praying that they figure out what is going on with him and how it can be prevented from him having to half live in the hospital.  He has been there for a few days please pray that some answers come from this.  If you would like to donate to Derek or his family, please feel free to do so.  You can send it via pay pal to me at and please put in the notes that it is for Derek.  They sure can use every penny they can get seeing that his mom is unable to work while her son is in and out of the hospital, doctors, and all that great stuff.  Thanks!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Charlie's Soap Review and Giveaway

Today I am reviewing Charlie's Soap Laundry Detergent, as well as their Kitchen and Bath Cleaner.

I was actually very excited to try these out.  I have been wanting to try Charlie's Soap products for a while now, but I swear I just never get the whole "to try list" completed!!!  Anyways, first of all I am going to talk about the Kitchen and Bath Natural Cleaner.  I have to admit that this cleaner works wonders!!  It works just as good as 409 does, however it doesn't stink, I don't feel like I am choking when I am cleaning, AND it is natural...where can you go wrong with that.  Another think that I LOVE about this cleaner is that it is safe for all surfaces and it is actually made for more than one room.  I hate having to go from 409, to Tilex, to Scrubbing Bubbles, to blah blah blah.  This cleaner allowed me to get everything done SO much faster because I wasn't hunting down the "right" cleaners for each task I had on hand.  I just hooked this one onto my jeans, tucked a few cleaning cloths in my back pockets and just went!  The two rooms were clean in MINUTES!!!!  Awesome when we all know how little time us mommy's really get for all this stuff!!!

Now for the Liquid Laundry Detergent.  This was another big time saver!!!  How awesome is it to have a natural soap to use for all of your clothes so that you are not looking for the cloth diaper detergent or the clothes detergent, or even, the sensitive detergent for babies.  Well, no more, you can use this detergent for even the sensitive kiddos like my son!  I was so happy about that!  Also, no matter what washer you are using, every large sized load uses 1 ounce of detergent, even HE machines!  And what is so different about this detergent (other kinds may have this, but I have never seen it before) is a measuring thing right ON the bottle.  So no more hunting down your measuring cup!!!

All you do is take off that black cap, give the bottle a little squeeze and then MAGICALLY this little measuring thing is filled with 1 ounce of detergent good for one large sized load!  Awesome!!!

I really enjoyed both of these products and highly recommend them for natural, safe, and time saving cleaning!!!  And, here is your chance to win the same products that were reviewed!

This review was written by Nicki

Saturday, June 16, 2012

A review of Wee Expressions New Diapers!

Wee Expressions was on vacation for a while and I couldn't wait for her shop to come back!  She recently had a baby and now that she is back, she has a new diaper to go with it!!!  Here is a little bit about the new fitteds that she makes!

The outside is now cotton and the inside liner is a new stay dry material, kind of the same material that Glow Bug uses.  This material keeps your baby's bottom super dry!!!  I have always loved Wee Expressions fitted diapers because they are super absorbent because she uses Zorb for the soaker part.  However, now I think I love them even more!  With super cute prints and an amazing stay dry feeling for my baby, how can I go wrong with her fitteds?

Not only that, they barely ever leak.  I have used her diapers day, night, naps, everything...and I have never had a leak with them!  I also love that there is no closure system on her diapers.  I love pinning diapers to be honest.  I think it gives you the ultimate customization that you could possibly have.  She does have an option to put a closure system on them, but like I said, I would rather pin!

I know I will definitely be back for more!  Thanks Wee Expressions for coming out with another amazing product!

Make sure you also check out her mama pads too!  They are great!

Also in the works for Wee Expressions: new burp cloths and nursing pads!!!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Swircles Review and Giveaway

Today I am going to talk about Swircles.  Swircles is a wonderful shop on Etsy that provides a few different eco-friendly products including cloth diapers and nursing pads!  Swircles informed me that she sells her nursing pads to some WIC offices to give out to breastfeeding mamas!  That is awesome!!!!  Her products are so decently priced that there really isn't any way that you can go wrong with buying from her!  I love that everything is so affordable for the every day mom!  Also, usually when mom's are looking for nursing pads they usually have a newborn...which means they found the joys of hospital bills from a birth...which means short on cash!  It seems like Swircles thought of everything!!!!

Swircles sent me 3 pairs of nursing pads to review and I have to admit that this was the first time that I have tried cloth nursing pads.  I have always used the disposable ones.  And now I have to say....WHY DID I DO THAT?!?!!?  I really should have known better than that.  The disposable pads are scratchy and don't really stay in place and it looks like you are stuffing your bra!  With these cloth ones, everything feels so much better! I don't know why the heck I didn't make the shift a LONG time ago!  The two kinds that she sent me were two all cotton ones and one with PUL on the back.  I used the cotton ones for day time use and the PUL ones for nighttime, both successfully!

These work just as well, if not better, than disposable nursing pads.  Also they are so much cuter!  I have to admit that Swircles definitely converted me!!!  And now, you have a chance to win SIX pairs and maybe she will convert you also!

This review was written by Nicki

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Super Why Around the World Adventure Review

Super Why is a PBS show that I am sure a lot of you have heard of or may have even watched it with your own child.  This was the first time my family has ever watched the show.  So, of course the first thing I did was pre-watch it before I let my children watch it.  I am sure that most parents do this too just to make sure that the show is suitable for your child.  Well, I was actually quite amazed with this show!

As soon as I was done watching this DVD, which included 3 full length episodes, I hurried up and called a few parents and let them know how amazing this show was.  I know at least one of them put in for a pre-order for the DVD after they heard Luke in the background talking with the show.  And if any of you have been following what is going on with Luke, the fact that he has Speech Dyslexia, it is quite amazing to see him interact with a show!  That shows that Super Why talks in a way that he can understand as it is very hard for people to actually speak to Luke and for him to actually completely understand what is being said to him.

If you have never watched it before, Super Why is a great show to help your child learn to read.  As the title can tell you, the first episode was an episode where the Super Why kids go around the world to find the mystery letters to figure out what the special word was.  It was great.  My son is a little young for reading (he is only two) but he is hooked to this show!  He has watched his new DVD like 4-5 times since he got it and Super Why is now a show that we watch every day on PBS!  It is definitely a show to look for!

This episode is having it's grand debut THIS FRIDAY 6/15/12!!!  So, if you have not yet seen the show, I would tune your TV's to PBS.  See your local listings for the times!

You can also pre-order the DVD HERE!!!  They will start shipping on Saturday 6/16/12!  How exciting!

*This review was written by Nicki.  I received no compensation to write this review, however I did receive the DVD free of charge.  This in no way affected my thoughts and opinions of the DVD.*

Monday, June 11, 2012

Babee Greens Review and Giveaway

I received a Babee Greens OS organic cotton fitted diaper to review.  This was a wonderful diaper.  I seriously fell in love with it.

These fitted diapers can fit babies from 5-35 pounds.  This diaper is a two piece diaper.  You use the small contour part of the diaper for a size small with a snug fitted cover.  You then use the actual fitted diaper for a medium size with it folded down.  Then for the size large, you just use it snapping in the front.  If you would like to, you can then add the contour part of the diaper and snap it into the medium setting to have more protection.  Here are some pictures to show you what I just explained:
Contour part of the diaper

Diaper in medium sized setting

Diaper in large sized setting

Large size setting with contour snapped in

Okay, so hopefully you can understand that better and enjoy looking at my foot in the last pic haha.  Anyways....When I went to try this diaper on Daniel, I was so excited with how well this fit.  And, to be honest, you can totally just lay the contour snap in part for the medium size also.  So, because this is a fitted diaper, I decided to try it overnight right away.  That seems to be the biggest usage of fitted diapers.  I was VERY happy that it did last Daniel all night.  I think we all know how hard it is to actually get diapers to work overnight when they are still waking up and having a bit to drink at night.  Daniel still wakes up every night around midnight for a little breastfeeding treat :-)  So, he still wets a lot!  I used it on the medium setting and just kind of laid the contour diaper in the medium size diaper.  To be completely honest, he might not have even really needed the extra absorbency of the contour diaper.  Because it is organic cotton, it does tend to be able to hold more pee than a microfiber diaper.

All in all, this diaper really is a wonderful treat and a GREAT diaper to have in any stash!!!  And now, you even have a chance to win one!!! :-D

This review was written by Nicki

Friday, June 8, 2012

Just Padz Review and Giveaway

As some of you may already know, and some of you don't, I am a huge supporter of cloth menstrual pads.  There are a few reasons for my personal switch to cloth.  First of all, it helps my cysts stay away.  It also is cheaper and better for the environment.  So, if you want to accomplish any of these things, I suggest switching to cloth!

Just Padz is a WONDERFUL shop on Etsy that makes cloth menstrual pads at a very decent price.  Her price is about 3 for $20!  That is awesome.  Not only that, her menstrual pads are worth way more than that.  She sent me out a maxi pad to try and I have to say it is fabulous.  With a super soft flannel on top, you don't even realize you are wearing anything but underpants!

Not only that, but she has some REALLY cute prints!  I love having something happy to put on during that time of the month when we tend to be not so happy.

As for absorbency, her maxi pads will be wonderful when you are having a medium flow.  I used this with no leaks and loved it!  Not only that, she has had an amazing idea!  She stitched down the middle, not all the way through, but just on the top part of it, to make all the yummy stuff go right to that area.  Such a GREAT idea!!!!!!

Just Padz maxi pad also does my favorite thing that a cloth pad can do!  It folds up into a nice little package.  Why do I like this?  Well, first of all, it keeps the part that will be touching your skin clean before you wear it.  That way you can throw it in your purse and not worry about what if your make up powder gets all over it.  Not only that, when you are done using it, you can refold it up and then stick it in the wet bag if you are out and about for that day.  This helps for when you can't rinse it out or anything.  Then when you go to take it out of the wet bag you are not sticking your hand into a bloody mess (pun intended hehe).

And now, thanks to Just Padz, you also have a chance to win one of these wonderful maxi pads!!!

This review was written by Nicki

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Benefit for Derek

There is a benefit that my Aunt and my Mom are running coming up.  I wanted to do a little post about it.  Here is what they have to say:

This is my friend Derek. Derek is a very sick 7 year old little boy who I would like to help. He was recently diagnosed with some type of autoimmune disease, which type we really are not sure at this point. What we do know is he is in a lot of pain and very sick. He is no longer the happy, healthy little boy that we all know and love.

His Mom, Naomi Kennedy, remains at his side in Children's Hospital for several weeks now and his brother and sister are being cared for by my wonderful sister, Donna Strough Neubeck and her husband Richard L Neubeck.

They all could use our help! I would like to begin a fund raiser to help with all of the expenses related to Derek's sickness and could use as much help as possible to plan something. 
In case you are looking for a last minute thing to do, and you are in the area, you can still go!  Here are the details:
Where: Sammy's Pizzeria
1400 Hyde Park Boulevard, Niagara Falls, NY 14305

When: June 10th from 2:30-6:30

How much: $10 to get in

What is there to do: 20 goodie bags for the first 20 people to show up, live band, food, cash bar, basket auction, and a 50/50!

I asked for a lot of help making up goodie bags for the benefit!  And I could not do it without the help from some AMAZING people.  Here is a little bit about everyone who helped me out:

First of all there was the wonderful Christa.  Christa runs a shop on Etsy called C Design Illustration.  On her shop she sells many different kinds of cards and stationary!  These are absolutely adorable. Here are a few of her products available for sale at a VERY low rate!!!

And this is what she donated to the goodie bags:

She donated 20 of these cards to be put in each goodie bag!!!

Next up is a very sweet lady named Sarah.  Sarah runs the shop called Lucy Lou's Boutique.  Sarah runs the shop with her step sister named Nikki (love her name hehe).  Sarah was amazing enough to donate some of her stuff from her shop for the goodie bags also!!!  Here are a few of the great products she offers:

Another lady that helped me was Amanda.  Her shops name is Buffalovely.  She offers MANY products that are very Buffalo, NY!!!  I love her stuff and need to get to ordering something from here because I do miss my Buffalo!!!!  Don't miss the snow, but miss the place for sure!!!  Here are a few of her adorable Buffalo themed products!!!