Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Wordless Wednesday: I need to get ready to go!

After watching me get ready, Piper informed me that she needed to get ready to go, too.  I tried to tell her than when it comes to makeup less is more.  She didn't listen, obviously!



Saturday, October 23, 2010

Giveaway! $50 Visa Gift Card

***CLOSED***


This a quick giveaway!  My hubby needs "likes" on his Cuervo Games' team's page.  So, what better way to help him out than to enlist your help?  This one is going to end on Wednesday at 4:59 pm EST so hurry up and get your entries!


Mandatory Entry
(leave a comment with your email address)

Like Cuervonation Sensation on Facebook


Extra Entries
(leave a separate entry for each)
*Post on Facebook the following phrase:
The guys of CuervoGames: Atlanta - Cuervonation Sensation Vegas Contest need your support!  Like their page please!
(Use the @ symbol in front of the page's name so that it will appear on the team's page and I can verify your entry.  This can be done 1x a day and is worth 5 entries each time!!)


*Follow @littlechoochoos on Twitter and tweet the following up to 4x per day, leaving a separate comment for each:
I entered to win a $50 Visa Giftcard giveaway from @littlechoochoos   Ends 10/27 http://ow.ly/2YmpE 


*Follow this blog publicly via GFC

*Like Adventures in the Land of Little Choo Choos on Facebook

If you have any questions about how to enter please contact me!  Thanks everyone!


**Gift card is being provided by me!  Giveaway ends on 10/27 at 4:59 pm EST and is open to US/CAN.  Winner will be choosen via random.org and notified by email.  If the winner does not respond with 48 hrs, a new winner will be choosen.  Good luck!!!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Review and Giveaway: Poo~Pourri Jr. Little Stinker



Dirty diapers really know how to stink up a room.  And the containers that hold those dirty diapers?  They'll take your breath away!  When I put my dirty diapers in the wash, the smell burns my nose.  And even after the diaper pail is empty the smell lingers.  Filling it up with hot water and a few drops of tea tree oil gets rid of the smell, but that doesn't get done very often because I am so lazy busy.  I really want something that would easily and quickly get rid of the smell.

Poo~Pourri was founded by Suzy Batiz and her brother in law Sergio Batiz.  Together they developed a formula that uses essential oils to combat odors.  This stuff isn't designed to cover up odors, but to eliminate them.  The main product in the Poo~Pourri line is the Before-You-Go spray.  When sprayed into the toilet, Before-You-Go creates an odor blocking film on the water.  There are different varieties of Before-You-Go featuring different essential oil blends.  I would love to try the Royal Flush.  It  uses eucalyptus and spearmint, two of my favorite essential oils!


I was sent Poo~Pourri Jr. Little Stinker, a soiled diaper odor eliminator, to try out.  According to their website, Little Stinker i

  • a soiled diaper deodorizer with natural anti-bacterial essential oils such as Bergamot, Leomongrass and Grapefruit. 
  • will quickly eliminate the source of odor causing bacteria in cloth and plastic diapers by spraying on soiled diaper before disposal 
  • safe for cloth diapers
  • uses all natural ingredients
  • Non-toxic
  • Biodegradable
I was skeptical that Poo~Pourri Little Stinker could actually knock out the odor coming from diaper pail, but I was willing to try it.  After dumping my diapers in the washing machine, I took a big whiff of the diaper pail.  It was pretty rough.  The ammonia smell was breath taking and not in a good way.  I spritzed one squirt of Little Stinker into the diaper pail and in the name of science took another deep breath.  The ammonia smell was gone.  So, I stuck my head into the diaper pail.  Still no ammonia smell.  All I could smell was the scent of the Little Stinker spray which reminded me of Fruit Loops cereal.  Yummy!  Since that first spray, I have used the Little Stinker spray for my wet bag that goes in my diaper bag, on heavily soiled cloth diapers, and even the training potty.  It is an awesome product that I love!  But don't think you have to use cloth diapers to need this.  Think about your Diaper Genie or Diaper Champ.  Couldn't they use some Little Stinker love?

Buy it:
You can purchase any of the available Poo~Pourri varieties from the Poo~Pourri website.  I honestly think it would make a great stocking stuffer.  I have someone in mind who would get a kick out of it (and I hope use it, too!)

Win it:

You can win your very own bottle of Little Stinker here! 

Mandatory Entry:
(Leave a comment)
Go to the Poo~Pourri Website, take a look around, 
and let me know what your favorite Poo~Pourri product is

Extra Entries:
(leave a separate comment for each, please)

*Follow this blog publicly via Google Friend Connect

*Like Adventures in the Land of Little Choo Choos on Facebook

*Follow @littlechoochoos on Twitter and tweet the following

(up to 2x per day)



I entered to win Little Stinker, a diaper odor eliminator
 from @littlechoochoos http://ow.ly/2We7d  #clothdiapers #giveaway





*Giveaway ends on 11/10/2010 at 11:59 pm EST.  Winner will be chosen via Random.org and notified by email.  If the winner does not respond in 48 hrs, a new winner will be chosen. I was given this product to review but this did not affect my review.  I was not compensated in any other way. 

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Lil' Bit

My baby is growing up. *sigh*

Colbie loves to eat her solids! Her favorites change from day to day, so each meal is really a guessing game. Her go to food is definitely green beans. She will eat them up as fast as I can get them into her mouth.

She tried to pull up the other day, but she fell back and bumped her head which irritated her. I'm pretty sure that is going to keep her from trying again for a while.

She still isn't crawling. Every now and then she'll think about, but then she's like "Nah. I like it right where I'm at."

Annnddd, *drum roll please* She has TWO teeth coming in. Her left bottom tooth has barely broke the surface and the bottom right is just visible under her gums. She has been taking the whole teething thing like a champ. She hardly ever fusses and is pretty content as long as there is something to chew on in her hands.

She says "Mama" very clearly.  She also say "Dada" and will say "BaBa" while waving her little wrist.  So cute!


Now, for my favorite part!  I wrote in my last post about Colbie that I was determined to get a picture of the clamping shut of the mouth.  I did even better-  I have a video.  This baby is so precious!


video

Show me the Money!

Living is expensive. 

I am blessed that I am able to stay at home with my two girls, but living off of one income is hard.  That is why I am always on the look out for ways to save money or bring in a little extra cash.  With the holidays coming up, I am looking for even more ways to save money.  That is why Ebates is so freaking awesome.

Ebates is a website where tons of stores coupon codes are listed.  And as an added bonus, you can earn cash back for your purchases at those stores.  The amount you can earn from each store varies, but cash back is cash back!

I am always a bit leery of things, so if this wasn't the real deal, I would not be posting.  But this is legit.  My first PayPal deposit was only for $5.25 because I wasn't that into it.  But after that deposit, I realized how easy it is to utilize Ebates.  I go to the Ebates website and search for the store I want to purchase from.  For example, let's say I wanted to buy an item from Target.com.  I would go to Ebates and search Target.  When Target comes up, I click on shop now.  Target's website opens up in a new window and I'm lined up to earn 3% cash back on my purchase.  The cash back won't post to your account until after the product ship, but it does post.  In the last two weeks, I have earned $35 in my account and this will be deposited into my PayPal account on November 15th.

Ebates doesn't spam my email inbox either.  They only email me when cash has posted to my account.  And, when you make a purchase you still use your usual payment method.  So not only am I earning cash back from Ebates, I'm still getting my reward points from the credit card companies.  AND, I can still use coupon codes on my purchases if I have them.

So what are you waiting for?  Go sign up for an account here and see for yourself how awesome Ebates is! You will get a sign up bonus that you will receive after you make a qualifying purchase through Ebates.  I know that most of the things I am buying for the Holidays will purchased online-  and I'll take back anything I can get on those purchases!  I promise you will not regret it!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Wordless Wednesday: No Parent is Immune

Two 2 years olds + Crayons = Major gratitude for Magic Erasers

artwork on the wall
(My usual camera is broken- sorry for poor quality pics)




Monday, October 11, 2010

Weekend Update

Friday was a typical Friday.  Piper and I hung out watching movies while Colbie napped.  A movie titled The Amateurs was just starting when the I turned the power on the T.V., and Piper told me she wanted to watch it (which is totally random for her- she typically tries to force me into watching hour after hour of Team Umizoomi.)  I figured it was about a minor league baseball team from some odd reason, so I kept it on.  I soon realized that there was absolutely no baseball talk in sight and decided to press the info button. Hmmm, "Citizens of a small town, under the influence of a man in the midst of a mid-life crisis, come together to make an adult film."  I don't think that is appropriate for a two and a half year old, do you?  Needless to say, I quickly changed the channel.  Wild Hearts Can't Be Broken was on, and since I knew that movie would be okay, we watched it.  Piper enjoyed seeing the horses, and I enjoyed looking at the guy from Sixteen Candles. 


Saturday, Matt, Colbie, and myself met with Matt's parents and Piper at the State fair.  Only, Piper doesn't call it the fair.  She calls it the carnival, which is hilarious because no one around here does.  Grandaddy and KK told us that when they pulled up to the *ahem* carnival, that Piper was in the backseat exclaiming "That so cool!  That so fun! Awesome! Cool!  Fun!"  How cute is that?


At the fair carnival, we checked out all the animals.  We saw all kinds of typical farm animals, including cows and horses.  Piper was more interested in looking at the horse's food that the actual horse, but I did pet a couple of them.  There was a pig race which Piper loved (we recently had the opportunity to chase an escaped pig... Piper thought that was the coolest thing ever even though we got in "trouble" for terrorizing the poor thing) and after the pig race, she was able to ride on a pony.  We saw a circus and even went to a Petting Zoo. 


Ah, the Petting Zoo..


I feel sorry for these animals.  I can only imagine how much life would suck if you were part of a petting zoo.  Anyway, the Petting Zoo was free, but you had to pay for cups of food to feed the animals.  We didn't  purchase one and that pretty much blacklisted us as far as the animals were concerned. 


This Petting Zoo had lots of animals, including a giraffe.  Piper, who was riding on Matt's shoulders, wanted to see the giraffe, but because neither she nor Matt had any goodies to offer, it was ignoring them.  So Matt held out his hand in a fist to make the giraffe think that he had something in it.  This worked and the giraffe stuck as much of its muzzle through the fence as he could only to realize that Matt's hand was empty.  If giraffes can give a dirty look, this one definitely shot one at Matt.  I was able to pick up a carrot off of the ground in front of the giraffe to give to Piper to feed him.   Piper or Matt, I can't remember which one, held out the carrot for the giraffe to grab through the fence.  The giraffe, however, came over the top of the fence and knocked Piper  in the head with its head!  Piper, surprisingly, did not start freaking out.  She thought that the giraffe was giving her a sugar on her forehead so she saw no reason to be alarmed.  After the giraffe tried to take Piper out, he turned his back on Piper and Matt.  When we rounded the corner where he could see us again, he turned back around.  I guess he was really mad at Matt for trying to pull a fast one on him.  I actually caught the entire incidence on video, but somehow managed to erase the entire disc before we left the petting zoo.  


Piper also rode a few of the kiddie rides while we were at the carnival.  I was surprised that she love them as much as she did.  The biggest downer the whole day was that Piper wasn't tall enough (34" ins) to jump in a teeny bounce house that was at the fair.  This really upset her because she is able to get inside the huge bounce houses where we live. As we were leaving the fair, Piper pointed out the Ferris Wheel.  Someone asked her if it was fun, and she said "No!  It is dangerous!"  Maybe Miss Accident Prone is realizing she needs to avoid situations where serious injuries can occur.


Sunday, Piper and Matt carved a pumpkin.  After they finished carving it, I roasted the seeds.  It was my first time and I think they turned out pretty good.  But, neither Matt nor I know how you are suppose to actually eat pumpkin seeds.  Are you suppose to shell them or just put the whole thing in your mouth?  We just ate the whole seed.... no harm done, right?

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

1 Step Forward, 3 Steps Back

I am beginning to get completely frustrated with this whole "potty training" nonsense.  Piper was doing really well.  We were having minimal accidents, even in the car.  But, this whole week has been a potty training nightmare.

She has not used her potty at all.  Instead, she has used the floor, her clothes, or furniture.  It has gotten beyond ridiculous.  And to make the situation worse, she smiles when I ask her is if she just tee-tee'd on the floor.  What the heck is up with that?

In addition to the many "accidents", she tells me no when I ask her if she has to go.  She also screams and cries when I tell her that I am going to take her to the potty.

I am honestly tempted to go back to diapering her full time.  But, she is two and a half years old!  And, she has proven to me that she can use the potty when she wants to.  Do I give up and revisit potty training at a later date?  Or, do I persevere and keep trying to succeed?  I need help--  I really, really do.

I am trying to not show Piper how aggravated I am becoming.  So, you get to hear about it instead!

Does anyone have any tried and true advice??

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Review and Giveaway: Dr. Bloom's Chewable Jewels




Colbie is beginning to cut her first tooth so she is in major chew mode lately.  Add that to the fact that she already tries to get her hands on anything within reach and any jewelry that I have on is in jeopardy.  Thankfully, I was sent a necklace and bracelet combo set from Dr. Bloom's Chewable Jewels line.



Colbie loves both the necklace and the bracelet.  When I have the necklace on and I am carrying her, she inevitably grabs it and puts it into her mouth.  It keeps her content for long stretches of time, too.  There have even been a couple of times when letting her chew on the necklace is the only thing I can do to make her happy.

Colbie gnawing on the Chewable Jewels bracelet
(Please excuse my retro shirt)
As a parent, knowing that these jewelry pieces were designed by a dentist gives me peace of mind when Colbie is chomping away on the pendant and bracelet. I know that she is not damaging her precious little tooth buds.  And, I don't have to worry about any small beads, glitter, or any other foreign objects being swallowed.  ( And you know how I feel about the swallowing of foreign objects thanks to Piper)

According to their website, Dr. Bloom's Chewable Jewels are:


Dentist Created and Endorsed
FDA approved materials
Phthalate Free
Lead Free
BPA, PVC, Latex Free
Waterproof
Dishwasher Safe
Fashionable


Chewable Jewels are available in three necklace shapes: Circle, Rectangle, and Hexagon.   The pendants come on latex free cording that stretches, but you can easily swap it out for a necklace that you already have if you want.  There is a variety of pendant colors to choose from, too, so you will have no problem finding one that suits your style.  Dr. Bloom's Chewable Jewels also offers Hexagon key rings which are perfect to attach to strollers, diaper bags, and anywhere else you may need to keep baby occupied for a while.




The only negative that I found is that Colbie,who has a very sensitive gag reflex, gags herself occasionally on the rectangle shape.  If the pendant was either the hexagon or circle shape this problem would be eliminated.  Other than that, I love, love, LOVE this product and recommend any new mom to check them out.

Buy it:
You can purchase your own Chewable Jewel at Dr. Bloom's website.  The combo set like the one I received is $19.90

Chewable Jewels has generously offered readers of Adventures in the Land of Little Choo Choos a discount code good for 15% off.  Use coupon code 2010L checkout.  This code is good until the end of 2010!

Win it:
One lucky winner will win their own Chewable Jewel =)

Mandatory Entry:
Head over to Chewable Jewel and tell me what your favorite piece is.

Bonus Entries:
Follow this blog via Google Friend connect
Like Chewable Jewels on Facebook and tell them Little Choo Choos sent you
Follow Chewable Jewels on Twitter
Follow Little Choo Choos on Twitter





This contest is open to US and Canada residents only and will end on October 30, 2010, at 11:59 PM.  Winner will be chosen via random.org and will have 48 hrs to respond.  If no response, a new winner will be chosen.  I was given this product to review but was not compensated in any other way.

Monday, October 4, 2010

And the winners are...

The winners of their own copy of Tracy Anderson's 30-day Method are:

#66
SalanderServant said... 66
Follow you, tweeted here. http://twitter.com/Fatally_Flayed/status/26038157794

#25
AStarrA said... 25
http://twitter.com/AStarrAMama/status/24881144763



The winner of the CSNstores.com $35 GC is:

#47

Tamara B. said... 47
I Like CSN Stores on Facebook


Thanks for all the entries!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Drama and Trauma

Adventure*
 1.     a : an undertaking usually involving danger and unknown
         risks
         
          b : the encountering of risks
  
2.      an exciting or remarkable experience

3.      an enterprise involving financial risk


When a person thinks of adventure, I seriously doubt that anything having to do with kids comes to mind.  More than likely they envision kayaking down the Colorado river or backpacking up Mount Fiji.  They may wonder how an innocent child could possibly bring anything but joy ( or house arrest) to their parents.  But adventure?  How do children equal adventure?   Oh, I can tell you how and I am only 29 months into this whole parenting gig.

Piper has already proven in her short life that she is going to keep me on my toes.  Right after turning one, she was cruising along the couch and fell backwards.  She hit her head on the coffee table and immediately started puking.  This lead to her having a CAT Scan in the emergency room.  In addition to this CAT Scan she has had an X-Ray of her entire right leg taken, chipped a tooth, and lost a toe nail.  And today?  Well, today she swallowed a battery.

We cleaned out our storage building and all kinds of goodies have been within her toddler's reach.  I think she found the battery on our dining room table because that is where the book light is still laying without its battery.  We were in the kitchen and I noticed that Piper had the battery in her hand.  I asked her what she had and told her to give it to me.  Her response was to put the battery in her mouth.  When she did this I exclaimed "Piper, don't put that in your mouth.  Give it to me!"  She said something that I don't remember which lead me to realize that her mouth was empty.  I said "Piper!  Give me the battery!  Please tell me you did not just swallow it!"  Her hands flew to her throat and a look of panic crossed her face.  After freaking out on her just a little, I called Matt.

When I told Matt, he told me, like most men would, that it probably wasn't a big deal and that it would pass on its own.  It wouldn't have mattered what he said, though, because I always call the doctor's office. When the nurse got on the phone and asked for my child's birth date, she laughed when I answered.  They are familiar with her to say the least.  The nurse told me to take her to the Emergency Room immediately because the battery mixed with her stomach acid was a very bad thing. 

At the emergency room I started crying as I explained why we were there.  They very quickly whisked us to triage and there we waited.  Once we got back there, it was like it was no big deal.  Piper, of course, was feeling fine so she was running around.  A friend of mine that works in Radiology came in to do the X-Ray of Piper's torso.  Piper thinks the idea of seeing her bones is awesome so she laid very still during the process.
Piper's X-Ray showing the battery in her stomach
When the Physician's assistant came in 30 minutes after Piper's X-Ray had been taken, we had already been at the hospital for an hour and a half.  He began to explain to me that objects like this will usually pass on their own and that they may want to take another X-Ray in a week to make sure that it was no longer in her body.  The old, non parent Lauren would have jumped at the opportunity to get the heck out of there.  But the mom in me told him that Piper's doctor had told us that the acid in her stomach could eat at the battery causing battery acid to leak out.  Mr. P.A. at this point told me that he would talk to the ER doctor, and that GI would have to get involved and Endo, and blah, blah, blah.  I honestly believe that he felt like I was an overprotective parent wasting valuable resources.  

(on a side note-  Piper has been watching this Mickey Mouse cartoon where Pluto turns red and she tells me "Look mom!  Pluto spicy!"  Mr. P.A. had red undertones in his skin and the whole time he was talking Piper kept whispering to me "Mommy, is he spicy?")

Twenty minutes or more passes and suddenly Mr. P.A. is rushing at me telling me that this is very serious and that we have to get Piper to lay on her left side immediately and not let her move.  He explains that the Endocrinologist needs the battery to stay at the top of her stomach and not enter into her intestines.  I assume that this is because it will be easier to get out if it is in her tummy.  Because Piper is a little firecracker, we are forced to wrap her up papoose style so she will lay still on her side. 

She and I are wheeled down the hall to another room.  An anesthesiologist is called in because my baby is going to have to go under general anesthesia so they can get the battery out.  This scares me.  This scares me a lot.  The anesthesiologist has everything ready and tells me to slide off the bed, leave the room, and don't look back.

In the waiting room, my best friend (who also works at the hospital) finds me in the hall, alone and freaking out.   But, she always makes everything better and was able to calm me down.    As an added bonus, she tells me that she will be Piper's nurse when she comes out of her procedure.  The procedure takes about 15 minutes to complete and then Piper is wheeled passed me to Recovery.  (By now, Matt has arrived and he and I follow our daughter down the hall)

I have no idea what that white lump is, but this is the inside of my daughter's stomach.  How many other parent's do you know that have this for their scrapbooks?
Seeing your child after they have been put to sleep is a very pitiful sight.  They had already removed the tube from down her throat and other unpleasantries, but she still look so frail!


Piper in Recovery. I'm holding the tube that is blowing oxygen in her face

They gave me the battery and it had already started to corrode.  So let this be a warning to all parents out there that a battery is not just another case of swallowing a foreign object.  The doctor told me after he got it out that if the battery had settled into a spot on her intestines it could have burned a whole through them!  Very serious stuff.

Piper did great and is fine.  The truth is that I was surprised at how well she behaved throughout the entire ordeal.  She thought the fact that she was able to eat two Popsicles in a row was pretty cool.  Her least favorite part was the not the I.V. in her arm, but the sensor on her thumb measuring her heart rate.  She thought her thumb was missing, poor baby!

In our rush to leave, I remembered to bring diapers but I forgot to bring my wet bag.  I find it humorous that when I asked if they had a plastic bag to put Colbie's soiled diaper in, I was given this:

Hardy, Har Har!

Piper is the reason why the title of my blog contains the word "adventure".  These first years have already contained more drama and trauma than I ever experienced in my life before she came along!  Thank you, Piper, for making life more interesting, but please, please, please try not to seriously hurt yourself!

*Defintion found at www.merriam-webster.com/