Thursday, 23 December 2010

Christmas Goodies

I really love Christmas goodies. I've been baking all week with B and having a blast doing it. We've made peanut butter fudge, buttery spritz, Santa's whiskers, and Oreo truffles. The Oreo truffles are by far my favorite! In case you haven't heard of them yet, I found the recipe on Bakerella and they are so easy to make....and yummy beyond belief.

What are you baking this year? I'm always on the look out for new things to try...the easier the better!

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

The End of an Era

My time as a breastfeeding mother of twins has come to an end. I knew it was coming as my little self weaners lost more and more interest, but I was really trying to hang on. I know how the majority of people I know feel about extended breastfeeding. I'm on the other side of the fence on this topic with, it seems, most I tend to avoid it. Hi, My name is Jennifer and I'm a closet extended breastfeeding supporter. I suspect that while I avoid the topic, if you really know me, you had your suspicions. I write an eco-friendly/ attachment parenting blog for goodness sake.

I really wanted to make it longer, 18 months...24 months... whatever my boys wanted to do. I just didn't expect them to end at 13 1/2. Technically 12 1/2 for L, he lost interest once we started a high calorie diet for him. I really don't know why it hits me so hard. I should be proud. I nursed twins for over a year. It seems that that is nearly unheard of, and I did it. I fought hard to make it this far. We had setbacks. I've lived on lactation cookies, fenugreek supplements, and EMAB MilkMaid tea.

So, why does this make me so sad? I feel like I'm losing a bond that has tied us together for over a year. I'm saddened that my babies are now toddlers. (Don't get me wrong. I DO NOT have baby fever. My hands are full and my heart is overflowing.) More than that, I just don't know. I don't know why it is such a kick in the gut.

My once snugly little boys now rarely let me cuddle them. There are trucks to push, animal sounds to be made, and things to climb. Mamas "num nums" are no longer needed, they slow them down. Such is life I suppose. Sigh.

Monday, 20 December 2010

A Green Way to Wrap

First of all, I've gotta say that I am a huge fan of Chicobag. Out of all my reusable bags, these are by far my favorite. Their holiday bags are always adorable, as this years holiday bag certainly is! They sent me the blue bag and I love it. I feel so festive doing my grocery and Christmas shopping with it. It's available in three colors, all equally adorable, and retails for 12.99.

The brilliant folks at Chicobag put together a charming Youtube video showcasing how well their bags work as gift wrapping! What an awesome idea. I know that I would love to have a present under the tree wrapped in a cute Chicobag! It's like getting two presents, a new grocery sack and whatever is in it. I love how they make the bows look so cute on the gifts. Check it out. It's not too late to order in time for Christmas! Their website says to order by 12/22, so don't wait too long. ;)

I was not paid for this post and all opinions are my own, as always. I was sent a product to sample and review.

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Earth Mama Angel Baby Review

This morning I give myself a little pat on the back for nursing the twins for 13 month and counting. It seems to be going downhill lately as their diet revolves more and more around table foods and we continue to struggle with L's low weight and high calorie diet. I'm not ready to call it quits just yet, and neither is A. L has pretty much lost interest, but A still nurses for one or two mini-sessions daily. I know my supply is very low and I'm just hanging on to breast feeding by a thread.

Earth Mama Angel Baby was kind enough to send me their Organic Milkmaid Tea to help boost my supply. I've tried basically every lactation tea that you can buy and this is by far the best! I definitely notice an increase in supply after I drink a few cups. I've had a few days when I thought it would be our last day of nursing, just because my supply is just so low. On those days I make sure to drink a few cups of Milkmaid Tea, and it has saved me so far. Another thing that I love about EMAB Milkmaid Tea is that the flavor is more mild that other varieties. In all of the other teas that I've tried, I've noticed that the anise is almost overpowering. If your not familiar with anise, it tastes like black licorice and isn't my cup of tea. (bwah ha ha). EMAB is much better than the others and is what I will use for now on.

Earth Mama Angel Baby has so much more to offer. If you are like me, and do not use baby products with nasty toxins on your baby, you will love EMAB. All of their products are organic and toxin free and rate zero in the Environmental Working Group's Cosmetic Safety Database. By the way, that database is a fabulous resource and you should check it out.

When I went on a rampage last year, eliminating everything that I considered unsafe from our baby care products, diaper creme was one of my main concerns. I ordered the highly recommended EMAB Bottom Balm and will never go back to the old cremes. A big plus is that it is safe for cloth diapers!

Thursday, 9 December 2010

Mini Muffin Tin Advent Calendar

This little project was on my to-do list last year, after seeing numerous tutorials all over the web, but I was a little too busy with having two newborns to find the time to make it. This year it was my first Christmas project and I love how it turned out. I didn't really follow any tutorial. It's pretty simple to figure out. Here is a good tutorial though from Somewhat Simple, that is a little different from how I did it in that she used little magnets rather than magnetic sheets.

I purchased a roll of adhesive back magnetic sheeting from Hobby Lobby for 9.99. I cut some scrapbook paper with my Fiskars paper cutter and actually used it to cut the magnets too. This gummed up the blade, but was worth the saved time and perfect little squares to me. I peeled the backing off of the magnet, and stuck a piece of the scrapbook paper on it. I forgot to pick up some number stickers, so I used my Cricut to cut them with the A Child's Year cartridge on red card stock. I also used my Cricut to cut little circles on green card stock with the New Arrivals cartridge because the numbers didn't really stand out on just the scrapbook paper.

Overall, I love how it turned out. The only problem that I found was that the mini muffin tin that I used had tiny compartments, too small for even a Hershey's Kiss. I did find some little Dove chocolates that fit and are so tasty!

B Bear has really enjoyed opening one slot every day and finding a chocolate. Before he opens it, we count up to what ever number we are on. After he opens it, we count how many days we have left. I look forward to it becoming part of our families Christmas traditions.

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Deals to share!

I was introduced to Zulily last night and I'm in love with it! I'm totally the kind of mom that is always looking for great deals and I adore Melissa and Doug toys. Zulily hosts various events for diferent brands that usually only last 72 hours, and they always have a few going on at once. I have heard that shipping time can be a bit long, but if you're looking for a deal, they have them. You do have to be a member to purchase from them, but the good news is, membership is totally free and you can sign up here.
Here are a few of my current favorites:
Melissa and Doug Blocks Rock Toy Bundle 29.99 plus shipping (was 48.00)

See Kai Run Pink Ruffle Mary Janes 18.99 plus shipping (was 32.00)

KidKraft Figure 8 Train Set 22.99 (plus shipping) was 40.00

I'm Back!!!! (and catching up with winners)

Wow...not having a computer for a few weeks was really sucky. I did teach myself to knit in the meantime, so that's something! Now, I'm not saying I'm good at it,(note the twisted stitches and added stitches) but it's a start, right? Now I'm trying to decide on my next project. I'm super in love with the Hudson Hat, but not sure that I can handle it just yet.
In other news, we had mass amounts of snow. Well, mass amounts for our area anyway. B Bear had some fun playing in it, but is very tired of it now and wants it to go away so he can go to the playground.

And, I'm catching up with all of the giveaways that have ended recently, and will be emailing the three lucky winners shortly!

Friday, 3 December 2010

Have you sent your Christmas cards yet?

I'm popping in for a moment and blogging from my in-laws place. Our computer is still not working. I'm having serious Internet withdrawals. It sucks big time. The good news is that the hubs and I finally decided to take the computer to a paid professional for repair! I should have my computer up and running again in a few days.

In the meantime I wanted to share a great company that I've been worked with this year on our photo Christmas cards. I had the opportunity to work with TinyPrints to create my cards and they are fabulous!  am so impressed with their customer service and quality. It seems like these days, there are not too many companies that take the time and put in the effort to build a good relationship with their customers. Tiny prints went above and beyond to make my cards perfect.

When I created our cards I uploaded our photos to their site and picked the style I liked and the wording as well. It was so easy, and they have styles to suit everyone. A couple of days after I finalized our order I received a phone call from tinyprints. A couple of our photos were grainy and they were concerned that it would affect the overall quality of our cards. They helped me change out the photos and sent me a high res proof of them to approve before they started. After I switched out the photos, I received another call to confirm the order. These were real people calling too, not an automated machine. The second employee that I talked to even took the time to trouble shoot my camera settings with me, to help me get better photos on my camera from now on. I was amazed that they took the time to help me, when they would have sent me some slightly grainy cards and I may never have noticed.

As you can see, my cards are beautiful, and just what I wanted. (I blacked out our names, you know...for a little bit of privacy.)I'm so excited to send these out to all of our friends and family this year. I've never actually sent out Christmas cards before and this is the perfect way to start. Thank-you TinyPrints for the beautiful cards. Be sure to check them out, it's not too late to order for this Christmas. They also have several products that would make great gifts!

Disclaimer: I was not paid for this review. It is of my honest opinions and was written only by me. I did receive photo cards to review, free of charge.

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