Occasionally it is fun to discover and share new products, so you'll find I'll be periodically sharing my "Wild Wednesday Finds" here on my blog. These are some products that caught my attention this week (note, I may not have tried them, but they looked so amazing that I have them on my shopping list)!
Disclosure: The following are Amazon product links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn on qualifying purchases. My participation in this program comes at no added cost to you. To learn more about my participation in this program, click here.
This cool product seems like a mess saver for busy parents. Just clip the holder into a vent in your car, and you have an easy way to hold sauces from the drive through. Click here to learn more.
My brother and I loved Brio trains when we were young, and I was ecstatic to find them on Amazon! At least when I was young, these sets were high quality wood that lasted years (in fact, my parents still have some at their house). We are even getting a set for my little one. Click here to see more.
Fall will be here before you know it, and this tee is getting added to my shopping cart! I'm one of those "Halloween should be everyday" folks (though I promise, I don't show it until September). Just in time for it being.... almost (?) September, this tee is the perfect way to ring in the very best time of the year! Click here to see more.
Admittedly, this is not a new find. I purchased these pens last year to help create some amazing recycled jar crafts, and have loved them since. But where I recently published some activities that recommended this product, I decided to include them on this list anyway. Their colors are vibrant, they are clean and easy to use, and perfect for a wide range of crafts. Click here to read more.
This product turned up on Amazon's best sellers list today, and is something we almost purchased for my little one last year. It may already be July, but it isn't too late to add new water toys to your collection. With many splash pads around the US closed due to COVID, this looks like a perfect backyard solution for young kids. Click here to read more.
Want more great product recommendations? Check out my Must Have Products page.
It is filled with products that we use in our home, and love.
Disclosure: This post contains links to Amazon products. As an Amazon Associate I earn on qualifying purchases. My participation in this program comes at no added cost for you. You can learn more about my participation in this program here.
Autumn is my favorite season, and I relish all things fall decor. I'm also a huge fan of crafting, so when crafting and autumn go together, it makes for one very happy mama.
Last year I got quite into creating custom jar crafts using recycled jars. Most were made out of Barilla pasta jars, but I've also used almond butter jars (while my little one is allergic to some nuts, almonds are thankfully not one of them).
For all of these crafts you will want to start with label removing. I started by peeling the labels off the best I could, followed by scrubbing under warm water with a sponge and Dawn blue dish soap. You can also place the jars in boiling water with a bit of dish soap to remove some of the remaining glue, or use goo gone.
Once I removed the labels, I used spray paint and acrylic paint and/or paint pens to create custom painted creations. Then I sealed the paint with a layer of spray sealer (Krylon makes several good ones). Below are several creations I've come up with. In the future I'll be offering step by step instructions and link to them here. Until then, I've written brief descriptions about how these were created, as well as some product recommendations to get you started..
Vases made with Barilla pasta jars, matte black spray paint, and acrylic paint. For the lettering I used orange acrylic paint and a brush to make dots, followed by using an acrylic paint pen, and then lightly going over the piece with acrylic paint on a brush. The spiders and spider webs were done with acrylic paint pen.
For these jars I used silicone self stick plumbing tape to create letters, and then spray painted the jars with a silver/white sea glass spray paint. I then used a bit of matte black at the bottom. The spiders and webs were done using acrylic paint pen. I affixed ribbons on the tops of the jars using a hot glue gun, and inserted tea light candles (the kinds that come in a metal container). I also spray painted the lids and affixed ribbon to the edges.
Once Halloween was over, I removed the faux flowers and leaves from the BOO jars and put them into Barilla pasta jars that I'd painted with off white spray paint. I then wrapped the jars with burlap and gold ribbon. These jars are perfect for all year use; just change the floral arrangement you use!!! Here you can see them set up on our Thanksgiving Table from last year.
Products to help recreate these looks:
This ribbon set is an Amazon Choice and offers similar patterns to the ribbon I used.
A hot glue gun is a must have crafting item, and if you don't have one yet, check out this Amazon recommended mini hot glue gun with excellent reviews. While this item comes with glue sticks, you'll want to be sure to purchase extra, too!
If you love these jars but aren't crafty, feel free tocontact me! I am happy to make custom pieces for any season.
Over the last few weeks I've been working diligently tons of new content for you, and in anticipation of the launch, I'm releasing some fun (and educational) printable activities for your toddlers/preschoolers/ kindergarteners. This downloadable package includes color, shape, and sight word activities with several levels of difficulty, as well as beach/ocean themed coloring pages.
You can get access to these printables here.
The following is a guide for making the most out of these downloads. And be sure to send me pictures of your little ones enjoying these great activities! I'd love to share them to Instagram and Facebook with links to your social media accounts.
How to Make the Most Out of These Activities
Disclosure: This post contains links to Amazon products. As an Amazon Associate, I earn on qualifying purchases. My participation in this program comes at not added cost to you, nor are there any strings attached. Learn more here.
The shape matching activity offers four levels of difficulty. The first level has shape words written in the same color as the shape itself, plus images of the shape in the same color. The next level has shapes and words on the main card, but no in color. The more difficult levels offers the shape words with coloring, which requires color matching with exposure to site words, while the most advance level offers shape words without coloring, requiring sight word recognition.
There are two great ways to use either level of this activity.
The first is to cut out each shape card, and the word card (you can cut this out into a single card rather than individual word cards). Then have your child use a glue stick and glue the correct shape next to the correct word.
You can also use a laminator and velcro to create a reusable activity. First laminate the entire page. Then cut out the individual shapes and the big words card. Finally, apply velcro to the backs of the shape cards and next to each word. Your child can then use the same cards over and over, rather than you having to print multiple copies and waste paper.
Product Recommendations from Amazon for This Activity
Fish (Color) Matching
This activity has three different versions; three levels of difficult for one version, two levels of difficulty for a second, and a single level of difficulty for the third.
The first version is similar to the shape matching activity, and can be done the same way (either with glue sticks or a laminator and velcro). Also like the shape matching activity, the fish matching activity asks your child to match colors to the correct color word. The easiest level has the color words written in color with a matching fish. The intermediary level offers site words written in matching colors to the respective fish. The hardest, sight word level simply has the color word written in black ink. A second version of this activity requires no cutting, just drawing lines from the fish to the correct color word.
A third version of this activity is a coloring page, where your child must color each fish with the color word on its body. This requires sight word reading, and is more advanced than the other versions of this activity.
This downloads pack also comes with four coloring pages for free play!
My toddler is already loving these activities!
Get yours today by signing up for my mailing list here!
Not quite ready to sign up? While you would be missing valuable content, I do make select coloring pages available for download without signup on my Craft Corner page.
Have you done any of these activities with your child?
Be sure to comment below to let me know how it went, or send me pictures (via Instagram, Facebook, or email) of your child enjoying the activities, and I'll post on social media with a tag to your account!
Love this? Be sure to share!
Disclaimer: This post contains links to Amazon products. As an Amazon Associate, I earn on qualifying purchases. My participation in this program helps support this blog and has no added cost or strings attached for you. Click here to learn more.
What kid doesn’t love a dirt cup? And just in time for beach season, here is a perfect take on this classic dessert. Use the ingredients and instructions below, or just get creative and have fun!
What you will need:
Click on images to view product pages. We've not used these items in our own home, but they have great reviews on Amazon and would be great additions to this project.
You may also like the following products for this activity:
Click on images to view product pages. We've not used these items purchased from Amazon in our own home, but they have great reviews on Amazon and would be great additions to this project.
In three easy steps your child can create this adorable and delicious beach themed dessert.
Love this? Be sure to share!
Disclaimer: The product featured in this post was a gift from PrintsField. All opinions are my own.
I’ll be honest, I’m not normally a sock fanatic. You know the type; the people with a pair of fun socks for each day of the week, each holiday, each special occasion, their favorite sports team or food or hobby….. There is a whole industry that caters to them! I’m not one of those folks.
But my fur babies? They are a different story. We have framed pictures of our pets. We take them on vacation. They have memory foam mattresses in our home. Long before I became the mommy to my little human, I was a proud fur baby mama to a growing menagerie of dogs, cats, and other little beasts. We’ve had hamsters we rescued from a home where they were being bullied by their cage mates, a gold fish we found in a broken bag outside a street carnival, and more. Before I decided to be an educator, I wanted to be a veterinarian. My family volunteers with animal rescues (mostly the amazing Friends with Four Paws… if you are looking for a new family member and live in the New York Tristate Area, be sure to check them out!). Needless to say, we love our pets.
So I was super excited to receive these adorable socks with my dog Basil’s face on them. Basil was the first fur baby I adopted as an adult. Sure, I had dogs growing up, and I became the mama to my husband’s dog when we started dating. But Basil was my first. While I love all my fur babies, she holds a special place in my heart.
I was quite impressed to hear PrintsField manufactures in the United States. I’m all about supporting businesses that create American jobs! Ordering was quick and painless as their website is very user friendly. I picked the ‘'Personalized Dog Socks’, in pink, and while I ordered them with one face, you can select between 1 and 3. After ordering, I promptly received an email with a status update. In fact, I received order updates regularly until the order was delivered. Eight days after I placed my order, I had my socks in hand (and it is also worth noting I ordered on a Sunday).
When I took them out of the packaging they looked huge; I am normally a shoe size 7.5-8, so I ordered a medium. Fear not; they fit just fine! The socks bunch some at the ankles, which gives a cute, retro look. The fabric was a bit shinier than anticipated when looking at them close-up, but I also am super picky with fabrics. If you are wearing them, no one is going to be able to tell they have a bit of a sheen, and the images printed on them are totally Instagram worthy!
Overall, I was very impressed with PrintsField’s overall operation, and love the socks. I should also note, they make a wide variety of products other than socks; they create custom mugs, laptop cases, notebooks, and more. I’d absolutely recommend their products to any animal lovers, or people looking for a fun novelty gift for another occasion (Father’s Day, which just passed, comes to mind!). I look forward to showing these socks off the next time I volunteer with the animal rescue I work with!!!
Final verdict? These socks are a yes. Be sure to check PrintsField out!!!
What comes to mind when you hear the term "allergy attack"? Sneezing? A stuffy nose? Itchy eyes? Maybe you know someone with food allergies and think of hives. Perhaps you even understand that food allergies are life threatening. But what about nonfood products?
In my latest piece for Westchester County Mom's Blog, I discuss my child's anaphylactic reaction and how managing food allergies means more than just watching what you eat.
Or, read my other posts about living as a food allergy family and find resources to help your family on The Mindfully Scientific Mama Food Allergy portal.
The following is an advertisement from Amazon. As an Amazon Associate, I earn on qualifying purchases. Learn more about my participation in this program here. Commissions earned help support this blog and allow me to publish new, valuable content. My participation in this program costs you nothing.
Is your family managing food allergies? What is something you would want people to know about living with these conditions?
Be sure to respond below!
Food allergies are terrifying, and trying to protect your child when they suffer from food allergies brings a whole new level of anxiety to the parenting experience. What if my child picks up an allergen at the playground (you’d be shocked how many people leave tree nuts all over the place!)? Can we safely go out to eat as a family? What if one of my child’s classmates brings in food containing one of my child’s allergens (the school is a nut free campus, but is not sesame free, my child’s other allergen)? What if the school uses an unsafe product during an activity? What if one of my child’s friends is wearing body lotion that contains sesame oil? The "what ifs" can feel suffocating.
Until now. Read more about why Social Distancing Helped Ease My Anxiety as a Food Allergy Parent in my latest blog post for The Inclusive Eating Project.
Or, view all my work on food allergies here.
In an effort to support and #amplifymelanatedvoices, Spokin has published a list of Black owned companies that support those with food allergies. I couldn't be happier to share their article with you, and encourage you to check each of these companies out yourself. I've already had the privilege to connect with some of them on social media.
I will keep this post short; ultimately, I just want to direct you all to this great resource. But please, feel free to share your own recommendations or reviews about these companies with other readers in the comments!
Love this as much as I do? Be sure to share it!
I don't do things like this often. I try to keep my posts to my areas of expertise. But my silence feels a heck of a lot like complicity given what is happening around me. I really don't know what to say, but I'm going to try.
As unacceptable as it is, the color of my skin confers me some level of privilege in the American system. I recognize this, and it is my duty to not shy away from the uncomfortable truth. And uncomfortable it is.
So, to the Black community, your lives, your safety, and your ability to rely equally on the systems that benefit me matter to me. I don't know what else to say. So instead, I am quietly watching. Listening. Learning. Trying to understand, because I don't and can't know what it is like to walk in your shoes. And trying to apply that knowledge to raise my white child to know and do better.
I am sorry. I hear you. And I stand with you.
Yesterday I muted my social media and listened in recognition of #BlackOutTuesday. I've since committed to continuing to keep my social media presence limited, as well as working to amplify melanated voices when I do post. I am going to remain teachable. I'm going to keep listening. I'm going to keep trying to do better.
My colleagues at Westchester County Moms Blog and I have also put together a statement of support. You can read that here.
Disclaimer: This post contains an advertisement for a Mindfully Scientific Mama partner. Please learn more here.
Summer 2020 isn't ruined by any stretch, but it certainly is going to be more difficult to keep our kids busy this year. Social distancing measures have meant the cancelation of many of summer camps in my local area (and perhaps yours as well), and I've seen first hand on local parents groups the stress this is causing my neighbors. What can you do to keep your kids occupied and engaged this summer if camps aren't running? While I am working on a roundup of some fun activities you can do with your child (stay tuned for more soon!), you probably aren't a teacher or childhood specialist. And let's be honest... you deserve a break after overseeing all that distance learning this spring, right?!
Enter Camp Mave!
I'm truly disappointed my child is too young for this educational summer experience, because it looks like loads of fun. I'm normally not one to pitch products I've not tested myself, but when Megan reached out to me and I started researching Camp Mave, I couldn't help but want to share about it. It is just that cool.
I was excited to see this distance learning camp option relies on certified teachers to implement small group projects each week. Even cooler, this camp offers a STEM based curriculum. By now most of us know that STEM curriculum teaches critical 21st century skills. And as a scientist myself, I'm always passionate about finding ways to help children develop these skills. Camp Mave is designed to help your child develop these critical thinking skills while having fun. You can see the entire schedule below. I was also happy to hear that Camp Mave is donating 10% of proceeds to COVID-19 relief.
Camp Mave is targeted for children ages 11-14 and runs week by week through the month of August.
You can read more about this amazing experience below, on their website, or learn more by contacting them at email@example.com.
Be sure to use code erinm2020 to receive 5% off your purchase price!
Did your child participate in Camp Mave? Be sure to contact me with your reviews! I'd love to get your feedback on the program!
he following is an advertisement from Camp Mave. Learn more about my participation in this ad program here.
Be sure to use code erinm2020 to receive 5% off the purchase price of a camp package!
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