Saturday, November 27, 2010

SmartPlay/Ingenio - [Review & Giveaway]



Sofia is such a puzzle lover and lately all of her puzzle don't seem to stand up to her or her baby brother chewing on those pieces [don't worry I'm always right there].  I've also been looking into a few more bilingual toys because as you know come from a Spanish speaking family and hope to pass that on to our children as much as possible.  So, when I was given the opportunity to host a giveaway and product review for SmartPlay for their Ingenio product line I could pass it up

Ingenio toys and games promote bilingual (English/Spanish) through hands on play. I espcially loved the puzzles we received not only for their educational purposes but because of the wonderful quality.  Each puzzle piece was actually bigger than my own hand which I totally did not expect and they are extremely thick and durable which any mom knows is great for a 3 yr old!  I also love that they are super affordable for such a great quality toy.  Most are under $14.99!

We received the North America puzzle which has the words in both Spanish and English and Sofia loved learning about all the states we have lived in, and seeing the country of Panama where my relatives come from and Puerto Rico where her dad's family is from.








The 2nd puzzle  was our favorite because it was actually of Puerto Rico and had all the different regions of the island!!!!!! So cool!  We got to show Sofia all the places we visit when we go on vacation and all the cities she has cousins and family in!  Now she can't wait to visit!




Sofia and Papi working on the puzzle


My proud little Puertorriquen~a!!

Photobucket


Being bilingual is not something we force on our kids but we try to just incorporate both languages naturally into playtime at home and I think Smartplay has definitely hit the nail on the head with these wonderful products.  Check their website for some more of their awesome Spanish Education Products that your children will absolutely love.  Whether your a Latina mother wanting to pass on your culture to your children or any mom really that wants to intoduce a second language to their child......these toys are a great way to start and make it fun too!

Now for the part you've been waiting for.......It's giveaway time!  You can win your choice of the North America Puzzle or the Puerto Rico Puzzle and just in time for the holidays!  This will make a perfect gift for that spcial little one!

Here's how you can enter:

***Note: Open to US Residents only
1.  Mention this giveaway or mention their website Smartplay on your blog, facebook or twitter and comment that you did so on this post.  You can receive a separate entry for each place you mention them but remember you must leave a separate comment for each too.  Also leave a link to your post in your comment!

2. Visit their website Smartplay and check out some of their products then come back here and comment what your favorite thing about their site is.

3. Follow Ingenio's Facebook Fan Page and comment to let me know!

4.   Follow my blog publicly and comment that you're following or if you are already a follower comment this post that you are. (1 entry)

5.  Follow my other blog  Fifi's Closet publicly and comment that you're following or if you are already a follower comment this post that you are. (1 entry)

6.  Vote for One. Two, Buckle My Shoe on TMB by clicking below and then comment that you voted.  (1 entry per day)



Top Mommy Blogs - Mom Blog Directory


7.  Vote for Fifi's Closet on TMB by clicking below  and then comment that you voted. (1 entry per day)



Vote For Us @ Top Mommy Blogs


*****This Giveaway is now closed....Winner will be annouced shortly!*****




Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thankful!

Just want to send a quick Thank to God our Father and our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on this Thanksgiving Day.  I'm blessed with my health and my two beautiful children Antonio and Sofia.  They are my sunshine on the darkest of days.

Thank you God for the abundant blessings you have bestowed upon us this year and please continue to lead us in the upcoming year.

"The LORD will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail."


Isaiah 58:11

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

About One - [Review]






Remember I told you I was in a FUNK??? Well part of getting out of it means I need more time and to get more time I need to be bit more organized.  As part of a recent review I was offered, I joined AboutOne which is basically and online family management site and let me tell you I am so impressed after only using it 1 day so far!!!!!!! I will be using this program for the next year to keep track of everything.

AboutOne was founded by mom and former software engineer,  Joanne Lang.  As a mother of 4 boys under age 6 she knew how efficient this site could be and she was exactly right!  From the moment I logged on it only took me about 5 minutes to enter all of our family's info.  Each family member is assigned their own home page with all of their information stored on it.

If you click on a family member you get a profile page like you see here with all of their including some things I highlighted below...

1. When you mouse over this section you see fun facts about your child including their birthstone, birthflower, astrological sign, chinese horoscope, and their name's origin

2.  Section allows you to enter their milestones, like first haircut, first tooth whatever you wish.  I've forgotten many of Sofia's and I really wish I had this site 3 years ago!

3.  This section allows you to upload multiple documents like birth certificates, health records or any pertinent info you need to have ready and available to use. AboutOne stores the information with bank-level security!!!


My favorite feature on this sire is that you can print out caregiver sheets for your babysitter or day care.  You don't even have to fill it out.  It just compiles info on it's own that you have entered in other places already.  For privacy reason I blacked out some of the info on Sofia's but you can see your child's DOB, blood type, insurance info, emergency contacts, food allergies or medical conditions and doctor info....all right there at the click of a button.


Most importantly in my opinion is the ease of access and having all the info I need in one place.  I can't begin to tell you how many times I have gone from site to site looking up all of our different doctors and school's contact info. Here I have everything in one place that I need.You can access their site from your mobile at any time and always have that important info on hand! The even have an upcoming feature in which you can create a hardcover album/memory book from photos and milestones you enter on the site! How cool is that?!?!?!?

Since I just started posting about this I will be adding more updates as I continue to use their program.  Click here for a brief introduction and overview to the program and to see what others have said about it!

You can also check them out here:



Thursday, November 18, 2010

Becoming a Better Christian

Like I said in my last post I have been in such a FUNK lately and feel overwhelmed with everything going on in my life.  The only constant that we all ever have id God and I feel like I need him now more than ever.

When Sofia was a baby I would go to church all the time with her all the time but as she became more mobile it was so hard.  She was kind of a bully to the other little ones in the nursery ....yes I'm very embarassed to admit, so I tried just keeping her with me.  Unfortunately, I couldn't enjoy the service because she was all over the place.  So for awhile I stopped going and would just watch the services on T.V. 

Around the same time I stopped going to that church the pastor (who I adored) also left and when you love your pastor you want to follow them.  So he recently opened his own church very nearby my house and the services are at 2 pm on Sundays so I'm going to start taking both kids :::prays to God for help on that one:::.  There are also various groups and services you can attend throughout the week which I think would be wonderful for our family! 

My real question to all of you is what do you do to impart God's word unto your own children.  Sofia is 3 years old now and she knows all about God and Heaven and the Bible.  We pray every night together but we can't always make it to church and I really want to make Christianity more prevalent on a day to day basis in our home.  I want my children to know that God is always there every hour of every day not just when we have time for him.  I would be open to any and all of your suggestions!!!!


"Trust in the LORD forever,

for the LORD, the LORD himself, is the Rock eternal."

-Isaiah 26:4



Photobucket

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Funkdafied.

SO I was reading one of my favorite blogs "Lou Lou's Views" and she mentioned how she gets in a blog funk sometimes when she doesn't get her hair done! AHA! That could be the culprit of my recent lack of blogging inspiration!

I confess.....I haven't gotten my hair done...not even a trim...since MARCH! And anyone with nappy curly hair like myself knows it turns into one big mess.  A good cut or blow out in general really does make a girl feel like a million bucks and I can't ever seem to find the time or $$$ to get my butt to the salon.  I literally have felt so down and out about my self lately and my hair is about 60% of it. 

On top of that...still no camera, and right before the holidays too! AGGHHHHHHHHHH it makes me want to scream ....My son's first holiday and I have no way to take pics.  I just want to cry now.  He is now 10 months as of the 12th and has 8 teeth and I can't even snap a picture of that little toothy grin ::sheds tear::

I've also been going through some person family drama and heartbreak but some things are better left unsaid and kept private so I won't go into details on that.

Last but not least on my sad rant is that my poor closet is the saddest thing ever.  I haven't bought clothes for myself since .................:::thinks hard to self:::.............oh since before I was pregnant with my son ....meaning early 2009.  YES...I KNOW....very sad. 

But I'm determined to get myself out of this funk one way or another this holiday season and I think I'm going to put up my tree a bit early ...maybe this weekend.  Plus I have a few great giveaways lined up for the next couple of weeks which I think you will love! Hopefully with the help of Alberto's IPhone I will also be able to take a few pics of my latest Fifi's Closet projects too!

So now that I've gotten you all depressed......................PLEASE DON'T LEAVE...PRETTY PLEASE?!?!!?!?! I promise regular blogging will resume in the next few days if it kills me!


Photobucket

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Holiday Gear Lineup

So it's that time of year......and Im referring to shopping for those adorable little holiday outfits for our little ones.  This year is different for me since I get the joy of shopping for a little boy.  Antonio was born in January last year so this is his first holiday season.

Until now I thought boy clothes were pretty boring but i must admit I've found some really great holiday looks.  had I been shopping for 2 baby girls I am one of those matchy-matchy mom's and they would be wearing the same thing.  Even though I have a little guy I'm still going for that matchy look.  BTW for the whole month of November I have a 40% off coupon for Baby Gap every wednesday and thursday so I definitely cant let those go to waist!  Here are my plans so far and I would love some reader input on what you think of my picks..

Thanksgiving Lineup

***Going for a dressy but not TOO dressy look ...if that makes sense??


Sofia's Outfit - All pieces are from Crazy8 - The sweater is on sale for $9.99 and the skirt is $14.75 but I also have a 20% coupon.  I will probably pair it with some cream sweater/cable knit tights and some brown Mary Janes.
 Antonio's Outfit - Sweater is from Crazy8 (pic doesn't do justice) - $22.75 on sale for $16.99 plus my 20% off coupon, probably will pair with some dark denim dressy jeans and brown dressy shoes

Christmas Lineup

***Keep in mind these outfits are what we will also be using for holiday portraits too!


Sofia's Outfit - Dress is from Janie and Jack - 100% Silk Duppioni Gold Metallic.  Was $89.00 on sale for $64.99.  I might wait this one out to see if it goes any lower.
Antonio's Outfit - Sweater is from Baby Gap $34.50 and Trousers from Janie and Jack $49.00

:::curses Janie and Jack for such high prices:::
New Year's Lineup

***We will hopefully be spending the New Year's in church with our little ones so proper attire is a must! 



Sofia's Outfit (already purchased)- Dress is from BabyGap - $39.50 but with my 40% off coupon I paid $23.70
Antonios Outfit - Sweater is from BabyGap- and is $44.50....a little pricey IMO for a baby so I guess I might have to use another one of my 40% coupons ...CHA-CHING!  Will be paired with some super light khaki's and some black loafers I'm thinking. I'm not 100% on the brown on the elbows so I might shop around a bit.


So what are your thoughts on my picks for my kiddos?  I'm also curious to know what your little guys-n-gals will be rockin' this holiday season ....DO SHARE!!!!

Layout was created by MOI using Paint.net
and the Minima template (with the help of about a million tutorials!)