Monday, April 30, 2012

Green Your Mom Giveaway Hop

Welcome to the Green Your Mom Giveaway Hop, hosted by Happy Mothering, Eco-Crazy Mom and Simple City Life. Each of the participating blogs has a prize/package worth at least $20 that will help you Green Your Mom for Mother's Day. After you enter my giveaway, be sure to visit all of the other fabulous blogs listed below the Rafflecopter form. Good luck!

Green Your Mom

Barnwood4u is giving away an 11 x 14 Upcycled wood photo frame (as seen below) valued at $39.50.  Learn more by reading my review.

Crocheting for Baby is giving away a cup sleeve of choice valued at $5.00.  Read my review here.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Green Your Mom Sponsor Spotlight Post {Crocheting for Baby}

Handmade items and gifts are the best.  They add so much love and make that special gift so much more personal.  Lauren, from Crocheting for Baby Etsy Shop, sent me a Monster Boo Boo Ouchie Pouch (with reusable ice cubes) to scare away Baby C's boo boos.

Lauren is a wife and mommy to her daughter.  About 10 years ago, she taught herself how to crochet and received help along the way.  She started her shop as a way to earn extra income by doing something she loves.  At Crocheting for Baby, you will find crochet hats, photo props, mug cozies and so much more.  Custom orders are always welcome, as well.

I chose the Monster Boo Boo Ouchie Pouch to review for the Green Your Mom Mother's Day Event because Baby C is so fearless and always on the go. I wanted something that would help ease the boo boos and comfort her at the same time.  The Ouchie Pouch does just that!  It comes with 2 reusable ice cubes to keep in the freezer.  When Baby C gets hurt, I simply drop in the ice cubes, button the pouch and place on her boo boos.  Before the Ouchie Pouch, wrapping ice cubes in wash clothes was my only alternative.  The ice melted and water got everywhere.  Not to mention, sometimes it was just too cold to hold.  This Ouchie Pouch is perfect for Baby C!  It fits in her hand and scares those boo boos away.  The pouch is made of 100% cotton yarn and is able to get wet.  This cute, little monster comes in green, orange, blue and pink.

This evening, Baby C was winding down from the day.  She accidentally slammed her fingers in the kitchen cabinet.  I quickly picked her up, grabbed the cubes from the fridge and placed them in the Ouchie Pouch for Baby C to hold.  Instantly, the tears were gone.

Crocheting for Baby is giving away a cup sleeve (color of choice) to one lucky winner for the Green Your Mom Mother's Day Event.  What a great alternative to save cardboard and keep your hands from burning.  This cup sleeve will fit easily inside your purse, so you can carry it with you when on the go.  It is made to fit most size to-go cups and is machine washable.  Just lay flat to dry.  This would make the perfect gift to go along with a gift card to a favorite coffee shop.   

 Learn more about Crocheting for Baby by visiting their Etsy Shop and Facebook Page.  Lauren also blogs at Tutus & Tea Parties.  Connect with Tutus & Tea Parties on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest!

Green Your Mom
Disclaimer: I was not compensated for writing this review post.  The sponsor provided product for review.  The opinions are my own and were not influenced by outside sources.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Green Your Mom Sponsor Spotlight Post {Barnwood4u}

As a mom, I love making memories and capturing those special moments with my family.  And framing those pictures to put on display makes it even better.  I was sent a beautiful, reclaimed wood frame from Barnwood4u to display my beautiful memories.

Barnwood4u was created by Jim and Brenda.  Jim is a stay at home dad who does all the working.  And Brenda does all of Jim's finishing.  They create quality, rustic, barnyard furniture, bookcases, frames and shelves.  Because each piece of reclaimed wood has unique knots, nail holes and wear, no two pieces are exactly alike.  Their high quality framing comes complete with glass, mat and backing.  The frames come with routed key hole hangers to allow the frame to hang flesh against the wall.  With over 35 mat colors in stock, you're sure to find something you love.

I chose the Eco Chic 8 x 10 reclaimed wood picture frame to review for the Green Your Mom Mother's Day Event.  And I'm so glad I did.  As soon as I opened the box, I fell in love with it.  It's a great way to display my favorite family picture for all to see. I chose this frame because of it's rustic feel and it's beautiful, eye-catching border.  I think it's perfect for our family because it has a manly feel, with a girly flair.  I can't wait to hang it in our new home!

Barnwood4u is giving away an 11 x 14 frame valued at $39.50, to one lucky winner for the Green Your Mom Mother's Day Event.  So be sure to connect with Barnwood4u on Etsy, Facebook, and Google+.

Green Your Mom
Disclaimer: I was not compensated for writing this review post.  The sponsor provided product for review.  The opinions are my own and were not influenced by outside sources.  

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Toddler Art {Toddler Talk}

Last week, Baby C and I tried out edible finger paint.  We had so much fun that I was ready for more arts and crafts this week.  I thought I should stay in the theme of "edible" since Baby C puts everything in her mouth.  I found this fun and simple peanut butter play dough recipe.  These ingredients are probably already in your pantry.

  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup powdered milk (I added more)

It was as simple as one, two three.  Even Baby C got in on the action.

Look what a great mom I am! I plopped her down right next to the knives.  Thank goodness she loves to eat and didn't notice those toys.  

Baby C just wasn't getting into playing with play dough.  I tried to add the puffs to make it more fun, but she just wanted to eat.  

Share your toddler arts, crafts and fun below.  We would love to try them out!  You can even link up your posts all week!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Meningitis Awareness Day {And Giveaway}

 3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. 5 For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ. 2 Corinthians 1:3-5

Today is World Meningitis Day.  I want to help to spread awareness so that we can pray for those families and children who have been affected.  I am blessed to have my daughter, who battled Meningitis at 3 weeks old, here with me today.  However, it was an extremely painful and rough road for our family.  And there are so many children and families who aren't so lucky.

Each year, hundreds of thousands of people around the world die from Meningitis, or suffer with disabilities that will last a life time.  Bacterial Meningitis causes around 170,000 deaths each year.  Those who survive can have their lives changed forever with long-term effects, such as deafness, brain damage, and the loss of limbs.

This video is dedicated to my Sweet Tiny Blessing.  The song I added was a huge part of my emotional recovery and is still special to me today.  To get a glimpse of our story in words, you can read my first blog post.  Check out how far Baby C has come!


While Baby C may have survived without any life-long effects, many people and children will have so much taken from them.  "Mighty Megan" is one of those children.  Read Megan's story and help her win a wheelchair equipped van to help make life a little easier.  She certainly deserves it!

LDk2 Etsy Shop and Snoedel have teamed up with me to bring awareness to Meningitis.  Each has donated a gift for a giveaway to spread the word and bring peace and comfort to families and children who have battled this devastating disease.

On November 1, 2010, Deidre 's husband, owners of LDk2 Etsy Shop, was life flighted to the Spokane, WA hospital with Bacterial Meningitis.  Thankfully, he had a full recovery and is still with his family today. But this was a very emotional experience for Deidre and there were moments she wasn't sure her husband would make it.  They are donating a $25 gift certificate to honor this special day.  Be sure to connect with LDk2 on Facebook!

Snoedel (pronounced snoodle), has offered to give away a doll.  Snoedel brings comfort to babies by slowly releasing mommy or daddy's scent.  This helps newborns and infants bond with their parents, even when they can't be together.  Snoedel also helps with sleep and eases a crying baby in distress.

Parents simply sleep with the Snoedel a couple nights before giving it to their baby. It is designed to specifically retain mom or dad's scent.  The doll is made of 100% natural fibers and is safe for all babies, including newborns, premature babies and babies in the NICU.  Please visit Snoedel at their website, Facebook Fan Page and Twitter.

I wish I would have known about the Snoedel when Baby C and I were in the hospital with our illnesses.  We lost so much bonding time being separated for so long and it took several months before I felt like Baby C knew I was her mommy.  My prayer is that someone special will be comforted by this safe and organic doll for their baby.

Ready to spread awareness about Meningitis?  Fill out the Rafflecopter form below to win a $25 gift certificate to LDk2 and a Snoedel doll.  There are no mandatory entries, however, the more you complete, the better your chances at winning, spreading awareness, prayer AND helping Mighty Megan win the van!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Bright Starts Ultimate Baby Shower Event {Free Blog Event}

Bright StartsMom to Bed by 8 and Iowa-Mom is excited to present the Baby Shower Event from May 7thto May 28th. This is a free blogger event and accepting signups now.
Join the Bright Starts Ultimate Baby Shower Giveaway event today, grow your readership and offer one amazing baby shower gifts giveaway!
  • If you do not wish to post the announcement, send the $5 via paypal to with your email address and Baby Shower April Event in subject line or notes portion of the form.
  • Once you have posted your announcement or sent the paypal payment, fill out this form with your information!
  • You will receive an email from me with 72 hours, confirming your participation. If you do not, please email me at and I will check into it for you.
  • Then on or around May 4th you will receive another email from me with the html code for publishing the giveaway.  Note it is required that you publish the giveaway html in full to be included in this event. I will verify links on May 7th around 10am central and if you have not done so, your link on the rafflecopter will be removed. This keeps this event fair for all who joins.

Social Punk Trilogy Blog Tour and Giveaway

Monica Leonelle is a well-known digital media strategist and the author of three novels. She blogs at Prose on Fire ( and shares her writing and social media knowledge with other bloggers and authors through her Free Writer Toolkit (

Social Punk Description: Ima would give anything to escape The Dome and learn what’s beyond its barriers, but the Chicago government has kept all its citizens on lockdown ever since the Scorched Years left most of the world a desert wasteland. When a mysterious group of hooded figures enters the city unexpectedly, Ima uncovers a plot to destroy The Dome and is given the choice between escaping to a new, dangerous city or staying behind and fighting a battle she can never win.

Excerpt: Twelve cups of water sat on the table, four for each of them. Next to each cup sat a pill—yellow for fat, red for carbs, blue for protein, and green for vitamins.
Vaughn took the red pill, ripped it in half like a pack of sugar, and poured it into his cup. He set his cup into a contraption on the table and it whirled and hissed. When the machine finished, the cup had a pink, swirly liquid inside.
Nahum looked at the four cups in distaste.
“Not up to your standards?” Vaughn asked, shooting his drink. He swallowed the mixture in one large gulp. “I would get you something else, but we’re rebuilding our hash. We can’t afford real food, plus it’s bad for you anyway. Extremely difficult to maintain a balanced diet.”
“Synthetic food can’t cost that much,” Nahum countered. He grinned. “We had it in our little fake world, at least.”
Vaughn chuckled. “Synthetic food is even worse for you than real food. Shortens your life. We stopped eating that stuff at the turn of the century. It gave people long-term hyperactivity, which can kill you. LTH took out a lot of the population, kind of like cancer in your day, except a bigger deal because the population had dwindled so low already. Plus, people live indefinitely now.”
Nahum’s nose twitched as he laughed. “People don’t live indefinitely.”
But Vaughn looked genuinely surprised. “Of course we do. Have you seen anyone who looks over the age of twenty-five to you?”
“What does that mean, though?” Ima asked out of curiosity. “How could you live indefinitely? You may not look older, but you still age.”
Vaughn grinned. “Like I said before—there’s a lot you don’t understand about this world.”

Little Sports Fan {Toddler Talk}

Our family enjoys sports, especially baseball.  When Baby C was in my belly, we took her to her first baseball game . . . The Tampa Bay Rays!

Pregnant with Baby C, Go Rays!
Baby C's first word was ball and she loves to wear things on her head.  So I'm predicting she's going to be a little softball player, just like her mommy.

Baby C sportin' Daddy's Colorado Rockies hat.

What team does your little sports fan love?

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Edible Art

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:2

Baby C and I decided to get a little crafty.  I searched "edible finger paint" on the web and came up with this simple recipe:

  • Yogurt
  • Food coloring 
Just scoop, squirt and mix!  I placed Baby C in the high chair for this one.  I predicted it would get a little messy.  I tried to be a good example and show her how finger painting is done.  She decided to take this lesson in her own hands mouth.  She dipped her fingers in, licked them and said, "yum!"

The Process

By the end of our art lesson, she managed to get a little on the paper.  I think she did a pretty good job for her first time.
The Product

Do you have art lessons that you can share with Baby C and I?  We would love to try them out.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Operation Smile

Operation Smile is an international children's medical charity that heals children's smiles.  They are comprised of medical professionals and caring hearts who provide safe, effective reconstructive surgery for children born with a cleft lip and cleft palette.  Since 1982, Operation Smile has provided 2 million patient evaluations and 200,000 facial surgeries for children and young adults.

Maria was one of those children.  Abandoned by both her parents, Maria faced an abundance of pain during her first 5 years of life.  When Maria's parents separated, neither of them wanted her.  When her parents left her, Maria's grandmother became her caregiver.

As Maria grew older, she was often taunted by children and schoolmates and too embarrassed to show her face.  Her grandmother was determined to get her help.  She was directed to Operation Smile.  Now Maria is a happy child who enjoys playing with friends, and is not ashamed of her smile. has teamed up with Operation Smile.  For every book rented, they will donate a portion of those proceeds to Operation Smile with their goal set at changing 1,000 lives!   At CampusBookRentals, you will not only save 40% - 90% off bookstore prices, free shipping both ways, and receive flexible renting periods, you will also be apart of changing a child's life forever.  

Disclaimer:  I received information and compensation for this post.  Regardless, I only share information that I feel will benefit or be of interest to my readers.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Ultimate Blog Party 2012 #UBP12

Ultimate Blog Party 2012

For the first time last year, I attended the Ultimate Blog Party.  I had just started blogging, so I was able to learn from veteran bloggers and meet some great people!  One of the greatest things about The Ultimate Blog Party is all the cool prizes.  This year, I donated a $25 gift certificate to Victoria Secret!  Once you've checked out all the great prizes, click here to fill out the form to enter!

If you are visiting from the UBP12, welcome!  Let me introduce myself.  I'm Mandi, the author here at Sweet Tiny Blessings.  I started blogging at the beginning of April last year, as a way of therapy.  My daughter and I had just recovered physically from a traumatic situation, but I still needed to heal emotionally.

Here at Sweet Tiny Blessings, I enjoy blogging about my family, faith, and fun.  I love to review products for my readers and host giveaways.  As part of my New Year's Resolution, I decided to take baby steps to keep my family healthy.  So, here at Sweet Tiny Blessings, you'll see more and more posts, reviews and giveaways of eco-friendly products.  We definitely have a long way to go, but we certainly have come a long way.

Here are some of my blog posts to check out if you'd like to get to know us a little better:

The Pacifier!  Love It Or Hate It?
Life Changes
Does She Know I'm Mommy?
Picking A Pediatrician 

A little more about me and my family.  My family is originally from Florida.  My husband and I met on  We then moved to Colorado.  Shortly before getting married, I lost my job as a Director of Education for a tutoring company, due to the fall of the economy.  With the bills piling up and a wedding to pay for, two weeks after getting married, my husband took a great paying position to get us back on track.  The only catch was, it was in Iraq.  I moved back to Florida to be with family.  It was difficult spending the 1st year of marriage apart.  After his month long vacation home, he returned to Iraq when I found out I was pregnant.  We recently moved back to Colorado with our Sweet Tiny Blessing, Baby C.  We are currently in the process of building our home and can't wait to settle in.

Please feel free to browse around, leave comments, subscribe to my blog and follow me on Facebook and Twitter.  I look forward to getting to know you too!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Happy Easter

I took Baby C to visit the Easter Bunny in the mall this week.  I thought she might be a little hesitant or even anxious to see him.  Who was I kidding?  I don't know where she gets her outgoing personality from, but it sure isn't from me.  She was so excited to see him.  She laughed and played with him the whole time and waved good-bye as we left.  I know Easter isn't about Easter Bunnies and candy, but I just had to share this precious picture with you.

Today, your sins are washed away and new beginnings and blessings are on the way.  

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. ~John 3:16

Happy Easter!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

No Bullies Allowed

Thanks to The Bully Project for sponsoring my writing. Visit their website to join the movement and learn more.
Growing up, I was sometimes picked on.  At times it was for my weight and sometimes for no reason at all.  Maybe it was that invisible "Kick Me" sign on my back.  My only saving grace was my big brother, who happened to be the captain of our varsity football team.  He was my protector and never let anyone continue to bully me around.

But many kids don't have a big brother or someone to protect them from their bullies.  Over 13 million American kids will be bullied this year, making it the most common form of violence experienced by youth in the U.S.  And my fear is that one day it will be my own child.  At just one year of age, my baby girl has already been bullied.   And I will do anything to protect her and other children from the violence.

The fact that anyone would want to hurt another human being just breaks my heart.  As a teacher, I've seen many kids bully others because of some kind of abuse they were receiving themselves.  But it doesn't make it right.  It's important to intervene when we see bullying and to teach our children how to stick up for themselves when bullying occurs.

Bullying can often start out at a young age.  Just last week, I witnessed a 2 year old being bullied on the playground.  Another child was throwing mulch at her.  The little girl stood there with sadness in her eyes as her mother ran over to protect her.    She said to her daughter, "tell him to stop throwing wood chips at you."  And the little girl did.  The mom also told the bully, "it's NOT okay to throw things at other people." That mother showed me the perfect example of how to deal with my child and bullies.

Please don't take bullying lightly.  Parents can play a huge role when it comes to preventing bullying and stopping it when it occurs.  Teach your child to solve problems without violence and praise them when they do.  Give your child self-confidence to stand up for what they believe in.  If you see bullying happening around you, stop it right away, even if it's your child doing the bullying.  Encourage your child to always help others who need help.  And teach The Golden Rule.

If you find out that your child is the victim of a bully, be thankful that you know.  Ask your child to write down what happened, including thoughts and feelings.  Let your child know it is normal to feel hurt, fear, embarrassment, shame and anger.  Stay calm and make sure your child knows that no one deserves to be bullied.  Let your child know that a solution will be found and give your child hope.  Watch for signs of anger, anxiety and depression.  And when appropriate, seek professional help.

I was selected for this sponsorship by the Clever Girls Collective. Find showings in your area for The Bully Project and buy tickets here.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Shufflin' Feet Family Game {Giveaway}

I'm addicted to playing games.  From board games to electronic games, I'm all about it.  Games are such a great way to have fun with the family.  And I can't wait until Baby C is old enough to enjoy playing them with me.

Rooster Fin games was created by a former math teacher who absolutely loves inventing games.  Rooster Fin published 2 games this past November - PongCano and Shufflin' Feet.  And a new game, Masheroo! is on it's way!  But Joe, the creator of Rooster Fin games, needs your help.  Head on over to Kickstarter to watch his video and learn more about how you can support Rooster Fin and bring more games, like Masheroo!  to your family.

Masheroo is the hilarious game that keeps everyone on their toes!  The first player to match their shape and face chips to their pattern card wins!  But be ready for the unexpected, the Masher Bolt can mash shapes, leaving no choice but to rebuild.  It's the fast paced game of Mash or Be Mashed!  Masheroo! is suitable for ages 5 to adult for 3 to 6 players.   

With the new release of Masheroo! on it's way, Rooster Fin is giving away Shufflin' Feet to one of my Sweet Tiny Blessings' readers!  Shufflin' Feet is the funny game that takes unexpected twists on every turn!  The players compete to win chips by playing higher valued cards than their opponents.  But on every roll of the cube, a player's card can suddenly slide away to another opponent.  Quick wits and a little luck can leave any player in position to win on any turn.  It depends on which direction the feet shuffle.  This game is great for players 10 and up and requires 3 or more players.

Learn more about Rooster Fin games and connect with them on Facebook and Twitter!

Ready to win Shufflin' Feet for you and your family?  Or maybe it would make a great gift for someone you know.  Simply fill out the Rafflecopter form below.  There are no mandatory entries, however, the more you complete, the better your chances at winning!  Good luck!

Disclaimer: I was not compensated for writing this spotlight post.  I was provided with information about the product.  All opinions are my own.

It Won't Be Like This For Long

I love country music, the pop-country type.  I always wished I could sing and secretly would love to be a country singer.  American Idol is one of my favorite shows and I always end up rooting for the country girls, like Carrie Underwood.

As I was grocery shopping this afternoon, a country song came on the radio that I had never heard before.  In fact, I never even heard of this singer.  But the song was beautiful and brought a little smile to me.  For all you mommies and daddies out there, I think you may enjoy it too.

The song is by Darius Rucker - It Won't Be Like This For Long

I know all the things I worry about for Baby C, won't be worries for long.  From worries about breastfeeding to bullies, it won't be like this for long.

Have you heard of this song before?  Do you love it like me?