WaterWipes, Naturally Speaking

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by WaterWipes as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central. I received complimentary products to facilitate my review.

There’s something about having your “last baby” that makes you want to do a few things differently in raising them. The added pressure of wanting to make sure you do everything “right” and your baby has the “best” of everything is nerve wracking – it almost feels worse with the last than it did with the first. Do you have the best diapers? The best body wash? Lotion?

It’s enough to drive you mad!

Twin Monsters

I find myself questioning so many of my choices this time around – and I’ve got double trouble for my last babies. Twice the fun! It’s weird that some things I deemed perfectly fine for my son, I wouldn’t dream of using on the twins. I even make all of their baby food. Cooking fruits and veggies like a boss. Who am I?!?!?! I don’t know where the old Amanda went, but I do know that I’m looking for the best of the best for them. After all, I won’t get another opportunity after this.

Along with cooking all of the twins’ food (all organic, of course), I’ve been focusing on more products that are all-natural and free of chemicals. One of the products that I’ve found most recently is a chemical free baby wipe that contains only two ingredients, 99.9% pure Irish water and 0.1% grapefruit seed extract – WaterWipes.

WaterWipes Go

When my babies were in the NICU, I noticed that the nurses there did not use any baby wipes with chemicals on them. Some warm water on a soft cotton cloth was all that was needed to clean those little babies. Why should that change, just because the babies are a little older? WaterWipes are just as durable as traditional wipes, and they’re also effective without containing any of the harmful chemicals that can be found in other baby wipes. I feel so much better knowing that we’re using a wipe that is a safe, natural option for my “last” babies. With so many other choices that I question, I’m glad I don’t have to with WaterWipes.

You can find WaterWipes at some of your favorite stores, including Babies R Us – where I got mine!



Influence Central is hosting a contest where you can enter to win one of five (5) $100 Babies”R”Us gift cards! The contest closes August 18, 2016, so make sure you enter ASAP. Enter below to win!

WaterWipes Babies”R”Us Giveaway

I-C will randomly select winners from all program entries and will facilitate fulfillment of the winning prizes (5 winners). Good luck!

Combat FORO with ReadyRefresh by Nestlé

Disclosure: Thank you ReadyRefresh℠ by Nestlé ® for sponsoring this blog post. All opinions are my own.

If you’re anywhere in the Midwest – or maybe just about anywhere in the U.S. these days – you’d know that it has been hot, hot, HOT lately. Temps have reached the high 90’s near me, with the heat index topping over 110 degrees for the last week or so. So hot, it’s almost unbearable to step outside. I’m used to being out and about with the family most weekends, but lately I don’t even like venturing out to my own backyard! And that’s just for me – there’s also the kids and baby twins to think about! YOU try telling a 5-year-old that he can’t go outside and play on his slip ‘n slide to cool off! Not an easy task by a longshot.

Slip N Slide

My son pretty much won’t let up. It feels like 110 degrees outside…of course he wants to go out and enjoy the weather in the water! And while I’m all for him getting out and being active, it’s also very important to me that he stays hydrated. For that matter, my whole family needs to stay hydrated too. That’s a lot of people in my house. Seven, to be exact. To make sure that we kept hydrated both at home and on the go, I found myself frequently purchasing bottled water. All the time. I ended up spending way too much time restocking at the grocery store, or buying at my local bulk warehouse store. Buying in bulk kept my shopping trips infrequent, but those cases are so stinkin’ heavy, and big box stores are energy-sapping (and cash-sapping) circuses.

Did you know that in 2014 bottled water volume sales in US supermarkets surpassed that of carbonated soft drinks, showing a shift of preference towards bottled water as opposed to beverages with added sugars? Refreshment is a business that’s changing dramatically as consumers think differently about how they keep their households and offices hydrated, refreshed and healthy. I know I don’t purchase soft drinks or carbonated beverages for my family. My five-year-old has yet to try soda! I always keep him hydrated with water. Only. I’ve been using ReadyRefresh to simply click & quenchSM !


ReadyRefreshSM by Nestlé® is a customizable beverage delivery service that provides your family with a variety of leading bottled water brands like Ice Mountain, Nestlé Pure Life, Perrier, and San Pellegrino. What an easy way to bring a little more health into your home. Whether you choose the easy access of a water dispenser or the flexibility of small on-the-go sizes, when you choose ReadyRefreshSM by Nestlé®, you’re setting a good example by encouraging everyone in your home to drink more water.

John Gress/Feature Photo Service for Nestle Water

The website is so easy to navigate, too. You pick your product, quantity, and delivery frequency.

ReadyRefresh Order

So easy to order! Now all you have to do is never run out. You’ve heard of the Fear of Missing Out (FOMO), right? Well, you might be suffering from the Fear of Running Out (FORO)—that nagging feeling you get when you’re running low on everyday essentials like toilet paper, diapers, or pet food. When it comes to FORO of bottled water, you can keep your healthy hydration on track and put your distress to rest—ReadyRefresh to the rescue! With customizable deliveries of thirst-quenching water–from sparkling to still, in the brands you love most–you’ll never experience FORO for bottled water again.

In a recent FORO survey, more than half of all surveyed (52%) experience FORO at least once a week. 69% of those surveyed experience feelings such as stress, anxiety and worry when household items start to run low. And 69% of survey respondents run low on everyday household items at least once a week. This happens to me all the time, too (hello, toilet paper!) and at least now I never have to worry about my drinking water running out!

So now that you know all about FORO, and how to combat it with ReadyRefresh. To learn more, visit ReadyRefresh.com and use the hashtag  #NoMoreFORO on social media.

So tell me, when’s the last time you’ve experienced FORO?

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Spring has Sprung – It’s Time to Play!

*Disclosure: This is part of a sponsored collaboration with DiMe Media and Dreft.  All opinions are 100% mine.

I don’t know about you, but I’ve been having a serious case of cabin fever lately. The twins are now four months old, and I feel like we never get out of the house. In fact, the only times the babies get out of the house is for church, or for a doctor’s appointment. Sad, right? Well, with the change in the weather, it’s about time we start to change that.


Last week, for the very first time, I took the twins out for something other than a doctor’s appointment. We went to the ZOO! And we had a great time too. We only stayed to see a few exhibits, and the outing was anything BUT stress-free, but it was still fun.


Some helpful tips for the next time you bring infants to the zoo:

  • Bring their bibs. Better yet – have a checklist of everything you need to bring. Somehow I forgot their bibs, hand sanitizer, thin blankets, and a few other items. I totally should’ve made a list.
  • Keep the sunscreen out of your baby’s eyes. Not proud of this one, but it happened. I think she must’ve rubbed her face while the sunscreen was still wet, and rubbed her eye at the same time. We got LOTS of stares during her scream-fest. Be real careful about this one.
  • Related – Keep babies out of direct sunlight. Another one of the things I forgot was sunhats, and the car seat covers I had were made out of thick material. It was TOUGH to keep them out of the sun. According to Dr. Dyan Hes, mom and medical director of Gramercy Pediatrics, babies younger than 6 months, like mine, should be kept out of direct sunlight. You can protect your baby from sun exposure by dressing him or her in protective clothing, a hat with a brim and sunglasses.
  • Don’t visit the zoo alone with infant twins. I had my mom with me, and there’s no way I would have survived the day without her.

Overall, though, it was a really good trip. Seeing some animals with the family, and being able to bring the twins was awesome. And the warm, sunny day sure didn’t hurt either.


Although I’m loving the fact that the weather is getting nicer, I am aware that the spring season brings more allergens to the air and rising temperatures can trigger skin irritations for little ones. Keeping this in mind, it’s important that we seek out products that are gentle on baby’s sensitive skin. My kids are no stranger to this either. They’ve had sensitive skin since birth, and I’m afraid the change in seasons might further irritate their skin. Couple that with our recent zoo trip where I forgot their bibs and they got super-dirty. All my fault, of course. But regardless, parenthood and babyhood is messy. But those messy and imperfect moments are often the most memorable and thanks to Dreft, we, as parents, can embrace the mess of #Amazinghood. Because, let’s face it- parenthood is pretty amazing.

Dreft Logo

Thankfully, we do use Dreft* for all our baby laundry. Did you know that Dreft is the #1 baby laundry detergent choice of pediatricians and the #1 dermatologist recommended brand for baby clothes? Yeah, it’s pretty awesome. Cleaning our babies’ clothes with a gentle, hypoallergenic product, like Dreft, is one of the ways we help keep them comfortable, and their clothes clean, during the spring season.


Twitter Party Alert!

Join us for a Dreft Twitter Party and a chance to win fabulous prizes on Thursday, May 12th from 9-10pm ET! To RSVP, visit www.dimemedia.net #DreftSpring

Giveaway Alert!

The fun doesn’t stop at the Twitter Party. Enter to win THREE Dreft products PLUS a $50 Amex Gift Card! Enter using the Rafflecopter form below. Good Luck!

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Trust OxiClean™ Laundry Detergent On Tough Stains

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by OxiClean™ through their partnership with POPSUGAR Select. While I was compensated to write a post about OxiClean™ Laundry, all opinions are my own.

I can hardly believe that the kids are already headed back to school! We have been having such a great summer playing outside, swimming at the pool, and just enjoying family that I get really sad when I start thinking that it will all be over pretty soon. We still have two pretty big vacations coming up (that I can’t wait to tell you all about), so there’s lots more to look forward to, but we’ll be back to the daily grind before we know it. **Insert huge SIGH here.**


My son, for one, has been enjoying getting dirty in the backyard, playing in the sun. Being the mom of a precocious and active 4-year-old, I love how much he enjoys the outdoors, but I’m more concerned with how I am hoping to keep his clothes clean – and not going broke with constantly replacing clothes! I can’t even tell you how many grass stains, dirt, and dried food I’ve found on his clothes over the years. Trust me, it’s A LOT!

Over the last few weeks, I’ve been looking for a new laundry detergent that would help me remove all my son’s tough stains that would also not irritate his super-sensitive skin. I’ve tried some that were way too fragrant, and some that just didn’t clean my clothes as well as I would have liked them to. Recently, I tried OxiClean™ Laundry detergent and think I’ve found the one for us. First of all, who knew OxiClean™ even made laundry detergent?!?! Certainly not me! I was surprised to see it in the store and decided to give it a try.


I was pleasantly surprised with how well my clothes looked and felt – without them smelling like a bouquet of flowers or a summer rain shower. That was the biggest perk for me, the fact that OxiClean™ Laundry detergent has a variant that is free of all perfumes and dyes. Finally – it’s an all-in-one solution that can be used on all of your laundry* to help remove stains, brighten your colors & whites and leave a long lasting freshness. It also helps save you time since it can help you get out tough, dried-on stains the first time*.


Have you tried OxiClean™ Laundry detergent yet? Did you even know it existed? I encourage you to give it a try and let me know what you think!

* Please follow manufacturer directions for your garments. For best results, pretreat stains with laundry detergent, wait 5-10 minutes and then wash.

Stock-Up for a Road Trip at Jewel-Osco #AHugeSale

Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #AHugeSale #CollectiveBias #JewelOsco

Heading our for a road trip can be a hectic time. You’ve got to make sure you have your itinerary ready, you’ve packed everything you need, and, most importantly, you’ve got the car loaded with all of your favorite snacks. My family takes road trips fairly often, and there’s always a tantrum when a favorite snack is forgotten.


Here are some tips on packing some snacks for your next family road trip:

1.) Keep it simple and easy. Any snacks you take should be just as appetizing as they are portable and transport-resistant. Snacks like salsa or dip would probably be impractical to take in the car. Granola bars, trail mix and crackers are great road trip-ready snacks to take on the road.

2.) Balance out the junk food. You don’t have to skip the junk food completely –  a vacation is the perfect time to splurge – but try to incorporate more than just candy and junk. So limit the sugar and try some fruit and veggies to keep yourself well-nourished.

3.) Stay hydrated. Be sure to take plenty of water and Gatorade to keep hydrated. Water and Gatorade will keep you hydrated and are better for you than other sugar-filled drinks you’d pick up at a gas station.


Beginning 7/29 through 8/11, Jewel-Osco is having a huge Anniversary Sale. Lots of great items to be purchased! I actually stocked up for my upcoming road trip at Jewel-Osco and picked up some fruit, Pepsi, Gatorade, and my family’s favorite – Doritos! We’ll be in the car for awhile, so I probably should’ve picked up two bags!


You don’t want to miss out on the savings during the Jewel-Osco Anniversary Sale. Pop in today and save on everything your family loves, from snacks and drinks to cookout classics and more.


Jewel-Osco is having a huge Anniversary Sale, but you can be sure to check out what great deals are available at Albertsons, Safeway, or Amigos too!

Albertsons Anniversary_ Promotional Post Graphic_V1

Jewel-Osco is my go-to grocer. Shop the HUGE Anniversary sale and stock up on your favorite brands 7/29-8/11. I’d love to hear how your family will stock up!


Feeding Hungry Kiddos at Denny’s #DennysDiners

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post in collaboration with Denny’s. I am a #DennysDiners Ambassador, however, I was not asked to provide a particular point of view, and all opinions are 100% my own.


Denny’s is one of my go-to restaurants with the kids. Close to home, yummy food, and totally affordable! But more than just being affordable, did you know that kids also eat FREE at Denny’s? That’s right, at participating locations, Kids Eat Free! Awesome, right? How does it work? For each adult entrée priced at $2.50 or more, you’ll receive a free kids meal for one child aged 10 and under. The offer is available on Tuesdays at participating locations from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., and menu items and prices may vary. It’s a great way to feed the family for less.

When I visit Denny’s with the kids recently, my son was able to eat free…WOOT! He has a few favorites and some of our favorite kids items include the chicken nuggets, chocolate chip pancakes, french toast and pizza. All delicious, and all free on Tuesday nights!


On a recent visit, my son ordered the chicken nuggets and loved them with a side of goldfish crackers. We love eating at Denny’s – it’s a great opportunity to chat over a meal, without me running around the kitchen preparing everything. Plus, getting both of my kids together is always a highlight for me. It’s a challenge to get them in the same room sometimes so I cherish every time that I do. We talked, we laughed, and I actually caught my son playing with his food a bit here. Dinos say “RAWR”! Lol


So get on out to visit your local Denny’s with the kids on Tuesday nights for a free kids meal. Both you – and your wallet – will love the deal! Have you visited a Denny’s Diner lately? What’s your favorite item on the menu?

Connect with Denny’s

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Denny’s Diners Partners with the Fantastic Four! #DennysDiners

Is your family looking forward to the new Fantastic Four movie as much as mine is? Set to open nationwide on August 4th, and starring Miles Teller, Kate Mara, and Michael B. Jordan, this movie promises to be a blockbuster this summer. What better way to get pumped for the new movie than with a delicious meal inspired by the movie?

Denny’s Diners is pleased to partner with this sure-to-be hit by offering a Slamtastic Four as part of their new menu, featuring a selection of iconic Denny’s dishes inspired by Marvel’s first family of superheroes. Available now, the new menu explodes with dishes such as the sizzling Human Torch Skillet, The Thing Burger and the Invisible Woman Slam®. Fans of the movie will love the new offerings.

FSM Inside Spread

The Invisible Woman Slam looks like it’s going to be my favorite. Blueberry pancakes, topped with fresh strawberries and bananas, served with eggs, bacon, and hash browns – yum, yum yum! The perfect breakfast for me – I love pancakes topped with fruit any day of the week.

Invisible Woman Slam

The Dr. Doom Lava Cake is sure to be a hit with my kids. And who am I kidding? I totally want to try it too! It looks like the best chocolate overload, doesn’t it? Chocolate topped with chocolate ice cream – you can’t go wrong!

Dr Doom Lava Cake

What’s more,to celebrate the highly anticipated movie, Denny’s is offering one lucky Fantastic Four fan a trip for two to the movie premiere on Aug. 4. Now, through July 19, fans may visit www.dennysfantastic4.com to enter for a chance to win the trip of a lifetime. Don’t wait – enter today!

dennys homepage layout_Page_1

If you could have a super power, like the characters in Fantastic Four, what would you choose to have? I’m thinking invisibility would be my choice – what about you?

Simplified Mornings with Nestlé Carnation Breakfast Essentials #50YearsofBreakfast #CollectiveBias

Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions, and yummy breakfast stories, are mine alone. #50YearsofBreakfast #CollectiveBias

Weekday mornings are a zoo at my house. I’m sure most mothers can relate, but trying to send a teen and a preschooler off to school, feed and let out the dogs, AND get myself ready for work is almost impossible most days. We’re usually frantic…and we’re usually late. If you spend any time at my house in the morning, you’ll likely hear ALL of these, and all in the same day.

“GET UP! We’re already late!”

“Did you brush your teeth?”

“Where is your other shoe?”

“Just GET in the car!”

Which gets me thinking – this really isn’t much different from when I was growing up. My mom tried her best, but it seemed like we were forever behind. It probably doesn’t help, but as kids my siblings and I were all night owls. We loved going to bed late, and had such a hard time getting p in the morning. Much like my own kids I guess (as I type this, my 4-year-old didn’t fall asleep until 10:15pm…and he has school in the morning).

One thing that was constant throughout our busy mornings was breakfast. My mother instilled in us the importance of breakfast early on. She always told us that a good breakfast fuels you up and gets you ready for the day. She said that if we ate breakfast everyday, we’d have more energy, do better in school, and eat healthier throughout the day. I remember having breakfast all the time and on-the-go breakfasts (for obvious reasons) were the norm. One of our favorites as kids remains one of my kids’ favorites and we always have some on-hand in the pantry…Nestlé Carnation Breakfast Essentials.


Easily found at your local Walmart, Nestlé Carnation Breakfast Essentials, while being delicious and super-nutritious, are also really affordable. Located in the breakfast aisle, Nestlé Carnation Breakfast Essentials is only $5.87 for 14 servings!


I love serving Nestlé Carnation Breakfast Essentials to my family because I can rest assured that I am feeding my kids a nutritious breakfast. Each serving offers 2x the protein of an egg, 2x the calcium of yogurt, 2x the vitamin D of an 8 fl. oz. glass of milk, and 2x the vitamin C of a 4 fl. oz. glass of orange juice. Knowing this, why would I not have my kids drink this for breakfast?!?! Oh, and in case you’re wondering, it tastes great too and my 4-year-old loves it!


Right now, Carnation has an awesome promotion going on:

    1. Buy any 2 Carnation Breakfast Essentials products.
    2. Get a clear photo of your entire receipt and then text with keyword BREAKFAST to 811811 for submission instructions or email it to redeem@CarnationFreeBreakfast.com or upload your receipt.
    3. You will receive a code back once the receipt has been verified that you can share with your friends and family for a free breakfast! (up to a $7.99 value). Participants can enter by texting a number, emailing, or uploading a photo of the receipt to the website.


So easy to get a free breakfast! What’s your family’s favorite on-the-go breakfast?

Connect with Nestlé Carnation Breakfast Essentials on Facebook!

Hilarious Movie Hot Pursuit Opens May 8, 2015!

If you’ve watched any television lately, I’m sure you’ve seen a trailer for the new movie, Hot Pursuit, that’s set to hit theaters May 8, 2015. I’ve been a big Reese Witherspoon fan ever since I saw her in Pleasantville and one of my favorites, Legally Blonde. And Sofia Vergara always cracks me up in Modern Family. Pairing the two of these funny ladies together is just genius. I, for one, am really looking forward to see this movie.


If you haven’t heard about it, the movie, Hot Pursuit, an uptight and by-the-book cop (Reese Witherspoon) tries to protect the sexy and outgoing widow (Sofía Vergara) of a drug boss as they race through Texas pursued by crooked cops and murderous gunmen. What could go wrong? Probably everything. This movie is going to be hilarious!

Looks great, right? Make sure you grab a buddy and head to the movies on Friday, May 8, 2015!!!

Visit HOT PURSUIT all over social media – #HotPursuit

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Try These Delicious Mango Recipes #MakeItMango

My son is always my helper in the kitchen. He loves mixing ingredients and helping me cook or bake. I love how he’s so young, yet already so interested in working in the kitchen. If he keeps this up, he could be a great chef one day – or at the very least, an awesome husband!


Last week my son and I had the opportunity to spend some time with the folks from the National Mango Board at The Chopping Block in Chicago and we learned so much about my son’s favorite fruit, and we even made a few delicious mango recipes to eat!

We learned that mangos are one of the most popular fruits IN THE WORLD,and a mango tree can grow as tall as 100 feet! We also learned how to properly cut a mango – something I have struggled with for years. In fact, it has hindered me from buying mangos often because I just didn’t know what to do with them. My son followed directions really well on how to cut a mango. Yes, I let him handle a butter knife for a few minutes – he did great!


From there, we made a few delicious mango recipes to enjoy. We started off with Mango and Banana Smoothies. So good!


Had yummy Cinco de Mango Quesadillas with a  Classic Mango Salsa. I didn’t think we would enjoy sweet mangos inside a quesadilla but I was so wrong. It was delicious!


And for dessert we made Frozen Yogurt-Dipped Mango Pops. This, of course, was my son’s favorite!

Frozen Yogurt-Dipped Mango Pops 4_Revised

So yummy!


What creative ways have you used mango?

Connect with Mango.org

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Angel On My Shoulder Summer Camps Help Kids Affected By Cancer

Summer is just around the corner and while both kids and parents anxiously await a much-needed vacation, there are a few others who need something more…a break from the heart-wrenching challenges they face every day as a result of a family member who is battling, or who may have lost the battle, with cancer. It’s a subject that is hard for many of us to talk about, and even harder for the kids who are in the midst of it all. Everyone, especially kids, need a break from it all, if only for a little while.


Angel On My Shoulder is a registered 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization that has established a number of cost-free camps, both summer and year-round, that were designed to address the needs of young people whose lives have been affected by cancer through the illness or passing of a close family member (parent, sibling, or grandparent). I love that Angel On My Shoulder allows kids to just be kids and interact with their peers.

AOMS Photo 3 - Camp Angel

Angel On My Shoulder weekend camps are funded through donations. so that everyone who wants to attend may do so. They provide kids with an opportunity to meet others like themselves in a well-supervised atmosphere of understanding. The upcoming summer camps include swimming, kayaking, canoeing and fishing.

Located in Wisconsin, these camps generally draw people from the Twin Cities and Chicagoland.  The camps are cost-free to qualified kids and are absolutely wonderful. Angel On My Shoulder offers five different weekend camps for kids who have a close family member who is battling cancer. Camp Angel is for kids ages 7-12; Camp Teen Angel is for teens ages 13-15; Camp Angel Adventures is for older teens ages 16-18; and, Camp Angel Adventures Extreme is for 16-18 year olds who want to experience more extreme activities, and Camp Hozhoni, is a family camp for families with a child 18 or younger who has cancer.

The purpose of the camps is to give kids the chance to meet other kids who are in the same situation and give them the opportunity to participate in activities tailored to their age group that will provide many happy memories.

AOMS Photo 4 - Darci Sullivan

The Angel On My Shoulder program is also looking for volunteers. You can apply online to assist this amazing organization.

“I am constantly inspired by the people I meet through Angel On My Shoulder from donors and volunteers to those families whose lives we touch,” adds Lolly Rose, founder of Angel On My Shoulder. “This community is quick to lend a hand and help one another and our organization is very thankful for that.”

To lean more about Angel On My Shoulder watch this video:

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post in collaboration with Angel On My Shoulder. While the views expressed here were genuinely mine, consideration was paid to me by Angel On My Shoulder to facilitate this post.

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