Posted by: suzan | February 2, 2016

We Are Not Stressed! Tips to combat everyday stress.

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Ever feel like you’re being pulled in multiple directions all at once? Like the tumultuous cycle of every day life seem to be never ending? We all at one point or another (and for some an every day occurrence) get so burned out from the things in life that causes us stress we end up feeling like there’s no light at the end of the tunnel. Yes, life can be stressful and demanding but we also have the power to find ways to reduce that struggle and eliminate them if necessary.

Take for instance the busy mom or dad who struggles to put food on the table all the while caring for their children, maintaining a household, and still have just enough energy to start the next day with the same cycle. We don’t necessarily like doing those things, but we have to because of responsibilities. But one day we may realize that through all the daily strains of responsibilities, when we don’t take care of ourselves we can’t truly take care of our loved ones happily.

I’ve learned through many lessons in life that when we don’t eat properly or have a calm mindset we can’t function on a mindful level. We are in essence, going through the motions and what kind of living is that? I’ve tried many remedies in the past and come to understand that when we are in tune with our bodies, we are better acquainted to what our body needs. Listening to what our bodies are telling us is an important factor to helping relieve stress and maintaining a healthier outlook on how to reduce stress. We all feel stress but we don’t have to let it take over our lives.

Below are some of the tried and true methods in helping reduce stress. Try them out if you haven’t already and see if your path will become more enlightened.

Essential Oils: Certain essential oils (which are the extracted compounds of plants) help with certain ailments. Essential oils are the natural parts of plants that go through a rigorous process of drawing out the liquid and turning it into concentrated oils. These essential oils can be used concentrated or diluted depending on the usage and the dosage. For the most effective kinds of essential oils, look for plants that trigger certain therapeutic results such as relieving stress, calming the nerves, and soothing headaches. Certain essential oils can be applied topically and straight out of the bottle while others work well diluted with water or blended with other oils. Essential oils have been used for centuries in almost all countries and prove to be both effective and preventative. They can be found in natural grocery stores as well as some spas and salons.

Common essential oils include:

Lavender – helps with anxiety, insomnia, headaches, and stress. Use in baths, lotions, or inhale from the bottle.

Ylang-Ylang – helps to increase a sense of well-being. Use in bath or mixed with lotion. Do not overuse as it may cause nausea.

Bergamot – helps with reduction of stress and depression. Use in lotions or inhale from the bottle.

Peppermint Leaves – helps with eliminating pain if applied topically, relieves headaches, and increase blood flow in targeted areas. Use as a topical treatment when diluted with water or inhale from the bottle.

Eucalyptus Leaves – helps relieve headaches and muscle tension. Great for clearing up sinus as well. Use in diffuser or diluted with water.

Cedarwood – helps with calming one’s mind and senses. Clarifies the mind and brings peaceful sleep. Use in diffuser or apply directly to skin.

Meditation: Perhaps one of the oldest ways of relaxation and concentration. It can be practiced by anyone of any age and is best when practiced on a regular basis so your body and mind can become accustomed to instant relaxation.

Start off in a quiet setting. Turn off all phones and electronic devices that can be distracting. If possible, choose a darkened but well ventilated room. Sit either on the floor or on the couch. Your hands can be relaxed in your lap, palms facing up. Clear your mind of all thoughts but don’t strain to do so. Let the mind naturally relax and gravitate to a point of emptiness. This means that you have no particular thoughts but you’re not trying too hard to have a blank mind either. In time, your mind will naturally be empty of immediate thoughts and images. Sit in the position for at least 20 minutes every day. As you get accustomed to the sitting position and your mind and body are cleared and relaxed, you can add more time to your meditation. I can usually sit for up to 40 minutes at the most and I usually do this in the evening just to decompress.

Self-massage: Massage doesn’t require someone to do it for you. We don’t always have the time or resources to get a professional massage so practice self-massage. To do so, be in a quiet, darkly lit room. Sit on the floor with your legs stretched out in front of you. Starting with your hands, start the massage from the elbow and gently massage in a circular motion to your fingers. Massage each finger carefully and tug gently to loosen the bones.  Massage the center of your palms until it gets hot. Then, move your fingers to massage your head. Moving slowly from the temple to the back of your head and down your neck. Next massage your ears in a circular motion and gently pull on the skin. Then move to massage your knees. There are pressure points in your knee area that are great for relieving tension and promote healthy sleep. Massage down your calves and work towards your feet. Massage the soles of your feet applying harder pressure. Then massage the entire foot remembering to put pressure at certain points.

In Eastern medicine and Traditional Chinese Medicine, the body consists of thousands of pressure points and meridians. These meridians and channels are what acupuncturists, herbalists, massage therapists, and the likes use to help and heal certain illnesses and diseases. When you constantly practice self-massage, you can help open up these meridians in your body to help you heal faster and prevent certain illnesses.

Proper Nutrition: We all fall victim to eating “junk food” now and then because they are created to trigger certain moods and emotions in our body. Sugar and sodium for example are triggers that elicit certain emotions in our brains causing us to think we are happier and more relaxed. But sugar and sodium are also the most habit forming ingredients that can cause major damage to our bodies if we overuse them. Proper nutrition including a balanced diet of organic and non-toxic fruits and vegetables give our bodies the necessary vitamins and minerals to be healthy. Protein such as very lean meats are necessary for some people but protein can also be found in nuts, soy, and legumes such as beans and lentils. Eating a healthy diet consisting of more plants can help you live longer and better. Because we don’t always know what animals eat, we are in essence eating whatever is produced by their bodies. Certain plants can promote a healthier well being and create better moods due to a balance in one’s body.

Exercise: Exercise comes in many forms but the most stress-relieving types are ones that balance the whole body. These include but are not limited to yoga and taichi where the mind works in alignment with the body. These types of therapeutic exercises also help with breathing and focus. Breathing is very important in most exercises as we are channeling the proper amounts of oxygen into our brains. In the instances of yoga and taichi, breathing works with different movements for more concentrated results.

Breathing Exercise: You wouldn’t think that breathing requires technique but in essence it really does. Proper breathing helps relax the mind and turn chaotic thoughts into peacefulness. This technique can work virtually anywhere; it just requires some concentration in the beginning. Start by closing your eyes. Inhale slowly and imagine a thread pulling you from the center of your body through the top of your head. Exhale slowly and release that thread. Repeat these steps several times until you physically feel your body relax and your mind rested. Deep breathing exercises can be used when you’re sitting in traffic, in the office, or even at home when you need a calming moment.

All of the methods above have proved to be effective ways of relieving stress and tension. While we may not be able to perform everything mentioned, it certainly wouldn’t hurt to try at least a couple of them. Find out what works for you and practice them often.

 

Disclaimer: Please remember that the methods mentioned do not constitute medical advice. Seek appropriate medical care when necessary. When using essential oils, it’s recommended to use only pure, unadulterated therapeutic grade essential oils and follow the safety guidelines from the manufacturer.

 

 

 

 

Posted by: suzan | January 29, 2016

Boulder Organic Foods: Organic Soups of Love GIVEAWAY

BOULDER ORGANIC SOUPS

Ever heard of that saying, “a way to a man’s heart is through his stomach”? Well, I don’t know if that’s entirely true, but I do know that the way to a healthier heart is with healthier food choices. The best way to start living a healthier lifestyle is to choose to eat healthier and consciously choose to purchase products that are good for our body.

For the month of February, I have chosen to feature a giveaway on healthy food choices and what better time than during Valentine’s Day? Whether you celebrate this day or not, it is a rather good excuse to give your loved ones something extra special and delicious. We all want to eat delicious foods so why not make them healthy as well?

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Now when it comes to convenience and cooking, it’s always nice to find something that tastes like it’s made from scratch and yet easy enough to just heat up on a moment’s whim. This giveaway features Boulder Organic Foods (http://boulderorganicfoods.com/) and the company has kindly offered 3 lucky readers of Happymomblogger the opportunity to win 3 FREE product coupons to try their premium organic soup. Those who have not tried Boulder Organic Soups are missing out because when we first tasted the various soups, we were all pretty amazed at how delicious they were. I usually prefer to make soup from scratch but I have no doubt that Boulder Organic Soups have become my new favorite heat-and-eat soups.

Boulder Organic Foods (http://boulderorganicfoods.com/) makes organic soup that are as fresh as if you made them yourself. They are easily found in the refrigerated section of your local grocery store and natural grocery stores. These soups are quite unique in flavor with amazing varieties such as Golden Quinoa and Kale, Red Lentil Dahl Soup, Tuscan White Bean Soup, Cuban Black Bean Soup, Chicken Vegetable Chili, and Roasted Tomato Basil Soup. My favorites are the Golden Quinoa and Kale Soup and Red Lentil Dahl Soup. The Golden Quinoa and Kale Soup had an abundance of delectable quinoa and thinly sliced kale. The Red Lentil Dahl Soup had just a tiny bit of spice to it and a smooth sweetened stew-like base. Both were very distinct and flavorful in tastes. Boulder Organic Soups come in convenient 16oz. or 24oz. containers so they would be great for a light lunch or dinner or more filling with bread and a salad. The 24oz. of course would be perfect for that Valentine’s Day meal you’re planning next month.

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All of Boulder Organic Foods soups are made with natural and organically grown ingredients and vegetables picked at the peak of freshness. They are made in small batches in their own facility’s kitchens and are certified organic, certified gluten-free and non-GMO verified. Their containers are BPA-free and easily recyclable and reusable. I don’t recommend heating soup in plastic containers regardless of the materials used because frankly, soup just taste better heated in a pot or in a bowl. No preservatives, fillers, or artificial ingredients are ever used so you know that you’re getting the real stuff here.

So for this Valentine’s Day, or even just because you want your loved ones to enjoy some incredibly delicious gourmet soups, enter the Boulder Organic Foods giveaway and you’ll probably end up loving their soup just as much as I do.

So how do you win these free product coupons? Read below to find out! The prize is 3 FREE product coupons for 3 winners each.

Here’s how to enter the Boulder Organic Foods giveaway:

ENTRIES:

#1 entry – “Like” Boulder Organic Foods on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/boulderorganic/ and write on their wall that you are entering the contest at Happymomblogger: http://www.happymomblogger.wordpress.com/. Please put Happymomblogger as the heading.

ADDITIONAL ENTRIES:

#2 entry – Become a follower: https://twitter.com/happymomblogger  and “Tweet” me @happymomblogger that you are entering the Boulder Organic Foods giveaway. Become a follower of Boulder Organic Foods: https://twitter.com/BoulderOrganic and “Tweet” that you are entering the contest at Happymomblogger.

#3 entry – Subscribe to my Blog.

#4 entry – Tell me which soup you’d most like to try : http://boulderorganicfoods.com/

#5 entry – Vote for me at Top Mommy Blogs using the link provided below.

You can enter by telling me the 5 entries in the LEAVE A COMMENT box. Please be sure to give me your name and email address so that I may contact you if you win. Contest is open to residents of US only. 18 years and older please. Please be sure to provide a physical address and not a P.O. Box. Only 1 contestant per household please. Please allow 4-6 weeks for delivery of prize. Any violation of the rules will deem your entry as disqualified. Happymomblogger is not responsible for lost, stolen, or damaged prizes but will do the best to ensure your prize gets there. In  the event the winner can not be contacted within 3 days of email sent then another winner will be chosen. No purchase necessary to enter. Void where prohibited by law.

Contest Start Date: January 28, 2016

Contest End Date: February 5, 2016

3 winners will be chosen at random and I will post the winners names on my blog.

Good Luck and thank you for participating!

 

 

Disclaimer: The product(s)were sent to the author for review by the manufacturer/PR. All reviews on “Happymomblogger” remain unbiased and unpaid and are the sole decision of the author. The opinions of these product(s) were not influenced in any way, shape, or form. As always, please read the ingredients carefully when trying new products.

Please read the labels and ingredients carefully and follow all manufacturer’s instructions (if any). The products selected for the giveaway were generously donated by the companies/PR to help readers learn more about their products. The winner’s choice in using/consuming these products are entirely up to the winner and will not hold the author and her family liable nor the companies/PR liable. These products are made with non-toxic ingredients but always be safe with what you use and consume.

http://www.topmommyblogs.com/blogs/in.php?id=storm

Posted by: suzan | January 25, 2016

AquaBall Sugar Awareness Campaign Week

AQUABALL

Have you ever walked down the aisles of a supermarket and tried to avert your eyes (and your children’s eyes) to all the sugary, artificial beverages lined throughout the shelves? Those enticing, colorful, and oftentimes deceitful little drinks know how to attract tired moms and screaming kids into buying their products. You may find a few that are actually not as harmful, but to truly give your children a beverage that is delicious and healthy, you’d have to do a bit of research.

When my son isn’t drinking water, I occasionally give him juice that is more water than juice. Not that juice is all that bad, but they still have a great amount of sugar even if it’s in natural form. When you’re looking to cut down on the overall sugar intake in your child’s life, then limiting sweet beverages is a great way to start.

I was approached by True Drinks to try AquaBall, a natural, no sugar, no artificial colors or flavors beverage designed for thirsty kids in mind. It’s slightly sweetened with Stevia, so depending on your preferences in taste, Stevia could be something you love or that you’d have to get used to. My son loves the taste of Stevia and I like the fact that it has only a tiny sweetened taste without the sugar or calorie contents. AquaBalls are simply water enhanced with added vitamins, slightly sweetened with Stevia, and flavored with natural fruit essence. All of the four flavors have zero calories, very low sodium content, and contains a good amount of vitamins and minerals. Because growing children don’t always get enough necessary vitamins and minerals, AquaBall includes them in their proprietary beverages.

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AquaBall comes in a cool round packaging made from recyclable plastic so you can easily recycle the bottles as you do your water. And with four very distinct designs, your kids can choose between Berry Frost featuring the adorable Frozen characters; Fruit Punch, featuring Disney’s iconic princesses; Grape, featuring the powerful and popular Avengers superheroes; and Orange, featuring classic Mickey Mouse and friends. So far we have tried the Grape and Orange flavors and my son seems to enjoy the Grape flavor more.

The week of January 18 – 22 was known as National Sugar Awareness Week where Americans were urged to reduce their overall sugar intake to less than 10% of their calorie consumption. I know how hard it can be for many people, but all it takes is a few simple steps. I would suggest taking a look inside your fridge and your food pantries. Do you see a lot of sugary beverages? If so, remove all of them or if your self-control is on hiatus, keep only a couple around. Then, put notes everywhere and especially on your fridge door to DRINK WATER. Now, for the kids, definitely try to reduce their sugary beverage intake. If your kids only drink water, then that’s perfect. But if they’re getting too used to sweetened beverages including milk, then switch those beverages out with something that doesn’t contain a lot of sugar. AquaBall has challenged me along with a few other bloggers to switch out the sweet beverages in my house. Luckily we don’t have much to start with so it was pretty easy to stock some AquaBall water in our fridge. We were also tasked to make recipes using AquaBall and this is what I came up with:

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Pomegranate Orange Bubbly:

Try this with the kids. They’ll absolutely love the orange flavored beverage with some crunchy pomegranate seeds at the bottom of the cup! And it gives them an extra dose of Vitamin C.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup AquaBall Orange Water

!/2 cup 100% Orange Juice

1 teaspoon Pomegranate seeds

Mix AquaBall and orange juice until well blended. Add Pomegranate seeds and ice.

Sugar awareness should be an ongoing thing with for our kids.  Let’s all try to eliminate as much sugar in our lives as possible, especially for children so that they can learn the importance of eating healthy.

 

Disclaimer: The product(s)were sent to the author for review by the manufacturer/PR. All reviews on “Happymomblogger” remain unbiased and unpaid and are the sole decision of the author. The opinions of these product(s) were not influenced in any way, shape, or form. As always, please read the ingredients carefully when trying new products.

Please read the labels and ingredients carefully and follow all manufacturer’s instructions (if any). The products selected for the giveaway were generously donated by the companies/PR to help readers learn more about their products. The winner’s choice in using/consuming these products are entirely up to the winner and will not hold the author and her family liable nor the companies/PR liable. These products are made with non-toxic ingredients but always be safe with what you use and consume.

http://www.topmommyblogs.com/blogs/in.php?id=storm

 

Posted by: suzan | January 15, 2016

Beat the Winter Flu and Cold Season

HEALTHY LIVING

If there was a miracle pill that eliminated or even reduced the amounts of flu and colds we get every year, I wish they’d invent it quick. But reality points us to the fact that it’s human nature to get ill, even with a few sniffles and coughs here and there.

As a mom, it’s disheartening to see my son get sick, even when it’s just the sneezes and coughs. I doubt there’s anyone who enjoys getting a cold but I for one try to prevent the sneaky cold from turning into full on flu whenever possible.

Cold and flu season is already upon us and some of us may already have tried these remedies and prevention methods. Below, I’ve put together some tips as well as tried and tested products that we have been using throughout the years.

  • Ginger Root. One of the oldest and true remedies used for centuries, ginger root is known for prevention and cure of certain ailments. When using fresh ginger roots, ginger can alleviate stomach problems, fight off colds, prevent certain colds from starting, and help with digestion. It is a natural antioxidant and tastes great mixed with honey and brown sugar. Try to use fresh ginger roots as they are most natural and potent. Mix sliced or shredded ginger root in hot water with some honey. If possible, drink ginger root tonic without any sweetener but using honey can also include the health benefits of honey.
  • Water. Drink plenty of water every day to clean out your system and during colds and flu. Water is a natural way of clearing out toxins in our body as well as giving our blood a boost in fighting off the bad stuff. If you don’t like the taste of normal water, drink hot green tea or add some lemon and honey into your hot water.
  • Citrus tonic. We all know by now that Vitamin C is great for practically everything in our lives. However, because Vitamin C is processed within our body rather quickly, it’s important to have lots of it throughout the cold and flu season. Just be sure to mix citrus fruits (such as lemon and oranges) with warm or hot water as warm water also soothes the throat, loosens phlegm, and calms the achy muscles.
  • Natural herbs including thyme, olive leaf, and anise. Certain herbs prevent illnesses from acting up as well as reducing the effects. Many times these herbs can be used on a daily basis and natural medicinal products blended by professionals are safe to take on a regular basis. Certain companies who we have used for many years are: Boiron Children’s Chestal Cold & Cough (http://www.boironusa.com/products/childrens-chestal-cold-cough/).  Boiron Chestal Cough. Barlean’s Olive Leaf Complex (http://www.barleans.com/olive-leaf-complex). And Nordic Naturals (http://www.nordicnaturals.com/).
  • Vitamins. I have found that taking just multi-vitamins don’t really target specific areas of needs we are looking for. I have come to rely mostly on single types of vitamins and minerals as they have stronger amounts of dosages and also your body isn’t trying to assimilate a great assortment of vitamins and minerals found in multi-vitamins. Mulit’s are great for all-around health and immunity, but I believe when you’re looking to target certain treatments, it’s best to  find the right single vitamin or supplement for your body.
  • Rest and meditation. I can’t say enough about how important rest is. Even I, who don’t get enough of it, suffer from shortage of much needed rest. The recommended amount of sleep for adults is around 6 hours. For kids the amounts can range between 9-13 hours depending on the age and need. When you’re sick, take little naps throughout the day. Meditation helps relieve the stress and problems we deal with on a daily basis. Even if you meditate for 20 minutes a couple times a week, you can feel a significant difference in your mood and sleep patterns.
  • Exercise. Perhaps one of the best mood lifters ever invented. Exercising, including walking and any type of cardiovascular movements can help pump your heart and muscles. Don’t do anything strenuous and exercise as often as possible. Try calming and healing exercises such as Taichi and Yoga as they incorporate breathing and relaxation in their forms.

Try out these tips and methods suggested above. When you’ve found something healthy that works for you, don’t be afraid to learn a bit more about how to improve your health and life. Most importantly, if you’re trying something new to treat an illness or prevent one, take it slowly and do your own research. Every body works differently but if you’re diligent in protecting yours, then you’ll have less problems later in life.

Wishing you a healthy winter season!

 

Disclaimer: The product(s)were sent to the author for review by the manufacturer/PR. All reviews on “Happymomblogger” remain unbiased and unpaid and are the sole decision of the author. The opinions of these product(s) were not influenced in any way, shape, or form. As always, please read the ingredients carefully when trying new products.

Please read the labels and ingredients carefully and follow all manufacturer’s instructions (if any). The products selected for the giveaway were generously donated by the companies/PR to help readers learn more about their products. The winner’s choice in using/consuming these products are entirely up to the winner and will not hold the author and her family liable nor the companies/PR liable. These products are made with non-toxic ingredients but always be safe with what you use and consume.

http://www.topmommyblogs.com/blogs/in.php?id=storm

 

Posted by: suzan | December 17, 2015

Natural Holiday Survival Guide – No Bah Humbug here!

BAY LEAF TREES

Why does it seem like every year the holiday decorations are coming out earlier and earlier? At my local Target, holiday and Christmas decorations and sweets were out by Halloween time. And yet, I was barely even thinking about how to decorate my house for Halloween. I hardly wanted to think about Christmas and the holidays leading up to and after that. But think about it I must for my son had started his Christmas wish list long before.

Every year I tell myself to start planning early. With all the crazy stuff that might happen during the busy holiday months, it’s vital to me that I plan ahead. But it’s also just as important to plan things with the environment in mind. Christmas is possibly the most beautiful and wasteful time of the year. It’s when most people spend more than they should or have to and sometimes guilt plays into the factor. It’s easy to just charge everything on your credit cards not really thinking ahead or planning on what to buy. Then inevitably, we end up spending more and wasting even more leading to empty wallets and harm to our precious planet.

So how can we save money, time, and our planet’s natural resources? I think most of us already do something eco-friendly on a daily basis but for the holiday season, let’s try and go beyond what we already instinctively do. Let’s make positive steps in ensuring a healthier and better future for our children and their children.

Here are some happy and healthy tips for the holiday season:

  • Make a list of things you want to buy. Search for coupons online or in mailed advertisements.
  • Try do-it-yourselves gifts. You can make them in bulk and with ingredients that you choose. Try this homemade soap recipe. It’s fairly easy and quite beneficial: http://www.motherearthliving.com/natural-beauty/lavender-rosemary-soap-recipe.aspx.  I love wrapping them in pretty paper or large leaves and they make excellent and healthy gifts.
  • Reuse wrapping paper. This saves you money and the environment.
  • Stock up on natural cold and flu remedies. With the busy moments and the cold weather, we’re prone to getting ill during these months.
  • Consider saving trees by giving digital gift cards that the recipient can save on their smartphones.
  • Make batches of food ahead of time and freeze accordingly. This will save you much needed time when you’re too busy to cook lunch or dinner.
  • Instead of wrapping gifts, consider placing gifts inside reusable shopping bags. Then every time your recipient uses their bag, they will be reminded of your kind and thoughtful gesture.
  • When purchasing gifts, be on the lookout for products using local ingredients, fair trade, cruelty free, and of course organic when possible.
  • Try buying products made from renewable resources so that we’re not helping to destroy our precious ecosystem.
  • Instead of sending out paper greeting cards, consider sending e-cards instead. I know the paper cards are incredibly cute, but try skipping that this year and send digital instead.
  • Shop online when possible to avoid crowds and driving in traffic. Oftentimes your favorite online stores offer free shipping during the holiday season.
  • Shop locally (products made within your region). Not only does this help with reducing carbon footprint, but it also helps local businesses and the economy.

No matter what your plans are for this holiday season, remember to take deep breaths, be calm, and keep the environment in mind whenever possible. Happy Holidays!

 

Posted by: suzan | December 2, 2015

NBC Green Is Universal Gif’t A Tree Campaign

GIFTATREE

There’s a special time of year when the holiday colors and festivities bring out the generosity in us. It’s the time where we spend a bit more, decorate a bit crazier, and spend time with our family and friends. But what’s also important is the power of giving and giving for a good cause.

NBC Green is Universal’s annual tree planting program comes back again this year in the form of the #GIFtATree program. The GiftATree campaign (http://www.greenisuniversal.com/) runs from December 2, 2015 to the end of the month and it’s incredibly easy to contribute in this campaign. In fact, it’s practically free! All you have to do is create a holiday GIF tree on their website and for every GIF shared and #GIFtATree generated before the end of December, the Arbor Day Foundation (ADF) will plant one real tree, up to 25,000, in a state part or national forest, funded by a $25,000 contribution from NBCUniversal. Now how easy is that? And while you’re having fun decorating a virtual tree, you’re also doing good by helping our precious planet.

Below is a image of my virtual tree that I also shared on Twitter and Facebook. Isn’t it adorable?

GIFTATREE

Research indicates that one tree can provide oxygen for up to four people in one day and that one tree can absorb more than a ton of carbon in its lifetime. With all the people in the world and all the resources we use on a daily basis, trees are a vital component in protecting our planet. And while protecting our precious planet, we are also ensuring a healthier and safer future for our loved ones.

So please join me and NBC Green Is Universal this December in planting a virtual tree and sharing it on their social media. I will be live tweeting today along with NBC Green Is Universal, the Arbor Day Foundation, and many other fellow bloggers and environmental enthusiasts. To kick off the campaign, NBC GreenIsUniversal is having a Twitter party during the Rockefeller Center Tree Lighting event.We’ll be chatting about how to have a more eco-friendly holiday season, as well as asking people to #GIFtATree. So this year, let’s give a new meaning to the phrase “tree huggers” and help plant new trees for a healthier future!

Join me and fellow bloggers on Twitter today, December 2 from 8-10pm (ET)/5-7pm (PT) at:

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Disclaimer: The product(s)were sent to the author for review by the manufacturer/PR. All reviews on “Happymomblogger” remain unbiased and unpaid and are the sole decision of the author. The opinions of these product(s) were not influenced in any way, shape, or form. As always, please read the ingredients carefully when trying new products.

Please read the labels and ingredients carefully and follow all manufacturer’s instructions (if any). The products selected for the giveaway were generously donated by the companies/PR to help readers learn more about their products. The winner’s choice in using/consuming these products are entirely up to the winner and will not hold the author and her family liable nor the companies/PR liable. These products are made with non-toxic ingredients but always be safe with what you use and consume.

http://www.topmommyblogs.com/blogs/in.php?id=storm

Posted by: suzan | November 13, 2015

Noodle & Boo – Products Worth Reviewing

NOODLE AND BOO FACE

I love shopping for new body washes and lotions. And it’s even more fun to shop for my son because kids’ products always have the most delightful and pleasant fragrances. But I don’t just buy products on scent alone – although they are an enticing factor. For me, ingredients and their effectiveness matters a great deal on whether the more expensive types of body care are really worth it. When it comes to body care for kids, I do think that higher quality products take care of their skin better.

When I was sent Noodle & Boo to try, I was actually pretty excited about it. I’ve seen Noodle & Boo at department stores and have always been curious at just how great they could be. The scent alone is quite intriguing as they don’t smell too “babyish” but still has a gentle and soothing scent. What’s really great about them is their unique formulation for children’s delicate skin. Packed with vitamins E and C, they are natural antioxidants to help protect and nourish the skin.

NOODLE AND BOO

Noodle & Boo was founded by a mom who wanted better products to care for her children’s sensitive skin. These skin  care products are delicately blended and formulated to be beneficial and without any unnecessary ingredients. Noodle & Boo does not contain parabens, phthalates, sulfates, PPG’s, artificial dyes, GMO’s, triclosan, and all the bottles are made free of BPA.

I was given the Ultimate Ointment, Super Soft Lotion, and Extra Gentle Shampoo to try and while at first my son wasn’t quite used to the scent (because I usually get him Lavender or Citrus scents), after lathering on the lotion and using the shampoo he decided the scents worked well with what was used on him. The Ultimate Ointment is designed more for babies and infants where diaper sensitivity, eczema, and cradle cap may occur. But it really can be used for any age in my opinion. It’s just an ultra soft and moisturizing protecting balm so even older kids or adults can use them. The Super Soft Lotion does exactly as it’s named – it softens the skin and leaves skin smoother and has a pleasant fragrance. My son has gotten used to having body lotion all over his skin and especially with the dry winter months coming up, it’s important to keep your kids skin soft and moisturized for ultimate comfort. With the Extra Gentle Shampoo, it is meant to work well with a baby’s delicate skin on the scalp. The shampoo is a tearless formula and has very little suds so they don’t end up irritating the skin should you use too much.
BouncingBabyBubbles

Noodle & Boo makes an extensive line of luxury skin care products for both children and adults. Along with the three products I tried, Noodle & Boo also makes products to pamper moms as well. With the light scent and the ultra luxurious ingredients, Noodle & Boo also makes great gifts to new moms. I had bought a set for a dear friend of mine when she had given birth not too long ago and she could not stop using the “mommy” lotions. The packaging is beautiful and with so many products available, there’s bound to be something your child (or you) will enjoy.

You can find Noodle & Boo online, in Nordstrom, and certain specialty shops that carry luxury children products. For more information about Noodle & Boo, please visit their website: http://noodleandboo.com/.

Disclaimer: The product(s)were sent to the author for review by the manufacturer/PR. All reviews on “Happymomblogger” remain unbiased and unpaid and are the sole decision of the author. The opinions of these product(s) were not influenced in any way, shape, or form. As always, please read the ingredients carefully when trying new products.

Please read the labels and ingredients carefully and follow all manufacturer’s instructions (if any). The products selected for the giveaway were generously donated by the companies/PR to help readers learn more about their products. The winner’s choice in using/consuming these products are entirely up to the winner and will not hold the author and her family liable nor the companies/PR liable. These products are made with non-toxic ingredients but always be safe with what you use and consume.

http://www.topmommyblogs.com/blogs/in.php?id=storm

Posted by: suzan | November 13, 2015

Tru Joy Organic Choco Chews – Holiday Sweets Review

TRUJOY

Those who know me well know what a huge chocolate lover I am. And I’m not ashamed to admit that I can be quite choosy when it comes to chocolate. My best friend and I are sort of “chocolate snobs” in the sense that if we had to choose between gourmet chocolate and the conventional grocery store versions, well, we kind of have to turn away the conventional versions. But being chocolate-wise can be a good thing actually. It challenges manufactures who make high quality chocolates to perform better and to always keep up the demands. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with paying more for better chocolate or better sweets in general. And when you taste higher quality chocolates, you’ll probably notice the difference immediately. I always joke with my husband that he complains I only like gourmet chocolate and he’s fine with the $2.00 chocolates, and yet, it seems my gourmet chocolates always disappear rather quickly the moment I open the packages.

So when Tru Joy and Surf Sweets offered me to try and review their newest holiday line of sweets, how could I say no. My son and I already love their gummy candy and their gourmet jelly beans and every Valentine’s Day I’m inclined to buy a few packages of their Valentine’s candy to give out to my son’s friends. Not only are their sweets unique and flavorful, they are made with only natural and organic ingredients. If you’re going to buy sweets, it’s always nice to buy ones made with natural and if possible, organic ingredients. We already know the health hazards that conventional candies contain, so buying candy that’s made with better and non-toxic ingredients are always the better choice. They may be a tad more expensive, but it never hurts to indulge a bit now and then.

Peppermint Choco Chews

Tru Joy’s Organic Peppermint Choco-Chews are a perfect mix of organic peppermint candy pieces and TruJoy Sweets original Organic Chocolate Chews. The delightful combination creates a delicious blend of dark chocolate and refreshing peppermint flavors that is moist in texture with a tingling sensation of fresh mint as you chew them. The peppermint choco-chews are individually wrapped so you can give them out in single pieces, or put them in a pretty and decorative holiday box as gifts. The peppermint chocolate chews themselves are not too sweet and is great after meals or just for fun. They’re perfect for kids because they’re not incredibly sweet and they’re soft enough for kids to chew on. Since they are individually wrapped it’s easy to just hand your kids a couple of pieces to satisfy their sweet tooth without indulging too much on the sweets.

 

TRUJOY HOLIDAY TREATS

I made holiday treat bags for the Garden Club at my son’s school and included some Tru Joy’s Choco-Chews. I really like that they’re not too sweet, incredibly moist and chewy, and has a very light and delicate peppermint flavor.

Tru Joy’s Organic Peppermint Choco-Chews are only available during the holiday season and you can find them at most natural grocery stores as well as online. They also have traditional candy canes made with natural and organic ingredients so if you’re in the holiday mood, pick some up early as they can run out quick. And if you’re interested in Tru Joy’s entire line of organic sweets, you can visit their website: http://www.trujoysweets.com/.

Disclaimer: The product(s)were sent to the author for review by the manufacturer/PR. All reviews on “Happymomblogger” remain unbiased and unpaid and are the sole decision of the author. The opinions of these product(s) were not influenced in any way, shape, or form. As always, please read the ingredients carefully when trying new products.

Please read the labels and ingredients carefully and follow all manufacturer’s instructions (if any). The products selected for the giveaway were generously donated by the companies/PR to help readers learn more about their products. The winner’s choice in using/consuming these products are entirely up to the winner and will not hold the author and her family liable nor the companies/PR liable. These products are made with non-toxic ingredients but always be safe with what you use and consume.

http://www.topmommyblogs.com/blogs/in.php?id=storm

 

Posted by: suzan | November 4, 2015

Reuse, Reduce, Repurpose

REUSE BOTTLE

When experts told us that global warming was happening I didn’t really understand the full meaning behind it. The ramifications of waste and misuse of products in our country is evidently leading us to drastic climate changes, pollution, and landfills inundated with waste.

The thing about not being wasteful is to use less. That’s pretty common sense but in a country raised on convenience, we’ve all fallen into the trap of getting something quick just because it’s convenient. One of these pitfalls is water bottles. They are easy and convenient and fairly inexpensive. But they do eventually add up in cost and plastic waste and becomes harder to break down.

As a People Towels (Peope4People) Ambassador, I was keenly asked, “why do you use reusables?” Simple answer is – to help reduce the waste of plastic production and use in the US. And I do this by using reusable beverage containers. I have a bottle for my water and a container for my hot tea. I even bought my husband and son their own reusable water bottles to take to work and school. When given nice-looking and highly functional ones, they both use them regularly.

It wasn’t always easy to use reusable beverage bottles because of constantly having to wash them but once I started using them it became second nature to me. Now I just wash them out the night before to get them ready for the next use. I may not always remember to use less plastic or conserve water or any of the environmentally sound actions, but I do try to have the best intentions when it comes to wanting to help improve out planet. All it takes is one step in helping combat global warming and for me it is using reusable beverage containers. It really is a win-win situation for the both of us.

For more info about People Towels and what they do please visit their website: http://www.peopletowels.com/.

Disclaimer: The product(s)were sent to the author for review by the manufacturer/PR. All reviews on “Happymomblogger” remain unbiased and unpaid and are the sole decision of the author. The opinions of these product(s) were not influenced in any way, shape, or form. As always, please read the ingredients carefully when trying new products.

Please read the labels and ingredients carefully and follow all manufacturer’s instructions (if any). The products selected for the giveaway were generously donated by the companies/PR to help readers learn more about their products. The winner’s choice in using/consuming these products are entirely up to the winner and will not hold the author and her family liable nor the companies/PR liable. These products are made with non-toxic ingredients but always be safe with what you use and consume.

http://www.topmommyblogs.com/blogs/in.php?id=storm

Posted by: suzan | September 25, 2015

Happy Healthy and Safe Halloween

HALLOWEEN PUMPKINS STUFF

Ah, Halloween. Perhaps one of America’s favorite holidays out of all the holidays. What with candies and dressing up in practically anything you want, America’s fascination with Halloween dates back centuries and entices not only children, but adults as well.

Besides decorating the house, finding the right costume, and loading up on tons of treats, Halloween can be both fun and dangerous. It’s not always easy trying to find the right balance between letting your kids go crazy during Halloween and keeping them safe from all the crazy stuff that’s out there. But we as parents need to be extra diligent during Halloween and remember key facts in helping our kids have fun on this day while staying safe. I love Halloween and I think it’s the perfect time to scare your little kiddos because really, any other time might just seem a little cruel. After all, Halloween derived from All Hallows’ Eve an ancient tradition practiced many many years ago. While back in those days Halloween may not have been as fun as today, for the past few decades people have taken liberties with how Halloween is truly celebrated. Wearing costumes, carving pumpkins, and handing out treats still stems from its origins but now we can really go all out in how we want to dress or decorate our houses. You may even find people decorating their cars with Halloween ornaments and some go even beyond that in dressing up their pets. And then there are horror stories of people cruelly killing or harming black cats during this holiday. For others, it’s an excuse to indulge on all the sweets that you can handle.

Whether or not you celebrate this unique holiday, there are a few things to remember in keeping our kids safe. Compiled below is a list from both experts and parents and I hope we can all have a very safe and enjoyable time on Halloween.

Halloween Safety Tips:

Costumes: 

You can either DIY costumes for Halloween or buy them from stores. To really help your kiddos stay healthy and create less toxins for the environment, try not to purchase flame-retardant clothing or those made with PVC. DIY costumes can be made with safer materials including paper, old bed sheets, paper bags, and anything that can easily recycled.

For younger kids, have them wear costumes that stand out from the crowd in case they do get lost in the crowd. Bright colors work well but if a certain costume doesn’t include them, place reflective tape on areas of the costume for better visability.

Don’t let your kids have harmful props with their costumes. They may just accidentally hurt themselves, or worse, others.

Treats:

Try to hand out healthier treats to kids such as all natural dried fruits, baked chips, or fun, non-toxic toys. I like giving kids Halloween themed school supplies such as pencils and erasers.

Keep in mind that with so many food sensitivities nowadays, we really have to be careful what we hand out as treats. Of course a good parent will always sort through their kid’s Halloween bags but it’s useful to keep in mind that peanuts can be a major choking and allergy ingredient.

To save money, do not buy in excess. If you buy sweet treats, the extras leftover will inadvertently end up getting eaten by your kids later on.

Decorations:

Make sure all lighting and electrical cords are UL labeled safe. Check old light decorations to make sure they are still working before hanging them up.

Try to create lighting for the trick-or-treaters that come to your home. Jack-O-Lanterns are a great decoration as well as provide better illumination on the front porch and stairs.

Try to buy hazard-free decorations. With stores readily displaying and selling Halloween decorations, it may be tempting to buy everything that you see. However, many decorations create dangerous situations for both adults, kids, and pets.

Below are some links to fun Halloween ideas for everyone to enjoy.

Disney: https://d23.com/all-treats-no-tricks-halloween-at-disney-parks-and-resorts

Disney Halloween Crafts: http://family.disney.com/articles/a-spooky-diy-halloween-guide

Martha Stewart: http://www.marthastewart.com/

Have a safe and happy Halloween!

Disclaimer: The product(s)were sent to the author for review by the manufacturer/PR. All reviews on “Happymomblogger” remain unbiased and unpaid and are the sole decision of the author. The opinions of these product(s) were not influenced in any way, shape, or form. As always, please read the ingredients carefully when trying new products.

Please read the labels and ingredients carefully and follow all manufacturer’s instructions (if any). The products selected for the giveaway were generously donated by the companies/PR to help readers learn more about their products. The winner’s choice in using/consuming these products are entirely up to the winner and will not hold the author and her family liable nor the companies/PR liable. These products are made with non-toxic ingredients but always be safe with what you use and consume.

http://www.topmommyblogs.com/blogs/in.php?id=storm

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