Archive | March, 2012

Mom Made Foods Turkey Bites {Review}

30 Mar

A while back I discovered Mom Made Foods at my local Whole Foods.  I posted about Mom Made Mac and Cheese back when I started my blog because it was a quick and healthy meal that I didn’t feel guilty about heating up for the girls.  About a month after my post my mom ran into the Mom Made Foods team while they were doing a promotional event at her local Whole Foods in Virginia.  She found out that Mom Made Foods is based out of Alexandria, Virginia (my hometown) and gave them my card.  Heather Stouffer, founder and CEO, reached out and invited me to stop by the office with the girls to meet her and talk more about Mom Made Foods. After our visit, the girls received a box of Mom Made Turkey Meatball Bites for review.

image from Mom Made Foods

About Mom Made Turkey Bites (Information from Mom Made Foods): Custom-sized meatballs are made with antibiotic-free turkey, and are significantly lower sodium than other ready-to-eat meat products.   Mom Made Turkey Meatball Bites are made from simple ingredients, and taste like homemade. Enjoy them on pasta, with cheese on a roll, or on their own as a fun main dish for dinner!  Ingredients: Turley raised without antibiotics, bread crumbs (bleached wheat flour, yeast, sugar, and salt), Nonfat dry milk, celery, Whole eggs, Onions, Salt, Oregano, and Spices.  CONTAINS: Wheat, Milk and Eggs.

Review:

The girls loved the meatballs so much my mom and I decided to try them.  They are bursting with great flavor in every bite.  You can definitely taste the Oregano in them. They are great to add to pasta (Maddie’s favorite), or to dip in ketchup for a snack. The meatballs where also the perfect size for sandwiches.  I tried two different types of sandwiches with the girls: a silly turkey meatball sandwich and a Thanksgiving craving sandwich.   The girls weren’t really into the bread with the sandwiches but they devoured the meatballs. Unfortunately, my Whole Foods does not have the meatballs in stock but when I see them I will certainly keep a stock in my fridge.

Silly Meatball Sandwiches

Thanksgiving Craving (only missing the stuffing)

Maddie says: I LOVE meatballs.

Pela: No comment (she had too many in her mouth, they must have been good)

Mom Made Foods are a staple in our freezer for the hair-raising days that I have no energy to cook, when I am rushing out the door or have a sitter and need something healthy and easy to prepare.

You can find Mom Made Foods in the freezer aisles at Whole Foods, A&P, Pathmark, Waldbaums, Mrs Greens, Fairway, and Duane Reade (as of mid-April).

To find out more about Mom Made Foods and other products please visit their website, their facebook page or follow @MomMadeFoods on Twitter.

Disclaimer:  I did not receive compensation for this post.  I received the Mom Made Turkey Bites for the purpose of this review.  All opinions expressed are my own.

Advertisements

Spring Cleaning for the Ralph Lauren Kids Spring Collection

29 Mar

Let the Spring cleaning begin!

Maddie has been on Spring Break for the past week and a half.  Last week we went down to Virginia to visit my parents. Last minute I decided to leave the girls down there for the weekend so that I could do Spring Cleaning because it is impossible to get any cleaning done with the girls around.  I spent almost an entire day going through the girls closet and drawers, getting rid of Fall/ Winter clothes and Spring/Summer clothes they have outgrown to make room for new clothes.  It felt so good to purge and surprisingly I got a lot more accomplished then I thought I would.

Image from MomTrends

Right before we left for Virginia, Maddie and I attended the MomTrends RL Gang: Class of 2012 Meet and Greet Party at Bloomingdales on 59th.  It was a fun afternoon with a balloon artist, RL Gang coloring book tables, and a book to make a Flipping Fun eBook.  We snacked on yummy cupcakes and sipped on water and juice boxes while members of the RL Gang: Class of 2012 were interviewed and their video featuring the Spring line previewed on a large screen.

Members of the RL Gang: Class of 2012. Image from MomTrends.

After the event, Maddie and I had some quality time to shop.  Maddie picked out her favorite Ralph Lauren pieces while we got advice from stylists available to those who attended the event.  Now that the girls have room in their closest I will definitely be going back for more of the Spring collection because it is ADORABLE.  I want it all for the girls. 🙂

Image from MomTrends.

To find out more about the event see the MomTrends post.

Check out Maddie’s Flipping Fun eBook.

More images from the event below:

Disclaimer: I was not compensated for this post.  I received a gift bag for attending the event.  All opinions expressed are my own.

Wordless Wednesday: Spring Is In The Air

21 Mar

Visiting family in Virginia.

Disclaimer: All images are property of Tastefully Childish.


G.U.M Launches Star Wars™ Toothbrushes

19 Mar

My girl’s LOVE, LOVE, LOVE to brush their teeth, especially Pela, my youngest.  She wants to brush her teeth anytime she is in the bathroom.  The other day I even caught her attempting to floss her teeth, of course I stepped into help.  When I got the invite for the MomTrends G.U.M Star Wars™ Toothbrush Launch Party and saw kids were invited, I knew we had to go.

The event took place at Ripley’s Believe It or Not in Times Square.  At first I was a little skeptical about going up there by myself with both girls during rush hour, but luckily the girls had their friend Ryder and my friend Brianne, from Stroller in the City, who helped us tremendously.  MomTrends also arranged sitters from Lucky Lil’ Darlings and a variety of activities such as arts and crafts, a scavenger hunt and a visit from Darth Vader™, and Clone Captain Rex™ while bloggers listened to a presentation from Dr. Michael A. Ignelzi and checked out the new line of G.U.M Star Wars™ Toothbrushes.

Tips for a Healthy Smile from Dr. Ignelzi, DDS, PhD, a pediatric dentist and orthodontist:

  • Start a ROUTINE with your child early on.  Brush in the morning and at night.
  • Rule of thumb: First tooth, first birthday, first dental visit.
  • Help your child brush and floss their teeth until they are able to tie their shoes.
  • Make brushing fun by using G.U.M character brushes like the new  Star Wars™ Toothbrush line (see below for more information on the different types of brushes)
  • Kids usually don’t brush long enough.  They should brush for 2 minutes, 60 seconds on top and 60 seconds on the bottom*.
  • Floss as soon as your child can tolerate it.  My girls LOVE to floss because they see daddy flossing.
  • Change your toothbrush every 3 months,use the seasons to help you remember. To clean your toothbrush during the 3 months, use listerene.
  • Avoid sticky foods like fruit roll ups, and gummy snacks.  This is our downfall because my girls can’t get enough gummy snacks but since they have them we make sure we brush well.  As an alternative give healthy snacks such as cheese, yogurt, and fruit.
  • A white spot is the first sign of a cavity, if you see one on your child’s tooth go to a pediatric dentist right away.

About G.U.M Star Wars™ Toothbrushes (Information from G.U.M):

1. Manual Toothbrush Twinpack:

  • Available in four unique characters: Anakin Skywalker™, Yoda™, Darth Vader™, and Clone Captain Rex™
  • Suggested retail price: $2.99

2. Lightsaber™ Toothbrush:

  • Unique molded lightsaber design available in three character designs:  Anakin Skywalker™, Yoda™, and Darth Vader™
  • LED lights that illuminate the entire brush and flash for 60 seconds in colors specific to each characters lightsaber™: blue, green and red.
  • Batteries included
  • Suggested retail price: $3.49

3. Power Toothbrush:

  • Available in two characters: Darth Vader™ and Clone Captain Rex™
  • Soft oscillating bristles that massage gums.
  • Built in suction cup to reduce counter clutter.  
  • Batteries included
  • Suggested retail price: $5.99
Make sure to check out the G.U.M Brush Like a Jedi Sweepstakes on Facebook.
To find out more about the event see the MomTrends post about the Launch Party.
Disclaimer:  I did not receive compensation for this post.  I received a gift bag with a sample of each type of toothbrush and a photobook for attending the event.  All opinions expressed are my own. Information was gathered from the presentation and inserts in the gift bag.  

Playtime! and Rated P for Parenthood

16 Mar

Pre-kids my husband and I lived in London and I went to the theater at least once a month with friends.   A few months after we moved back to New York, we found out I was pregnant and once my daughter arrived it became difficult to go to a show. Going to shows will be a lot easier now that Playwrights Horizons and Sitters Studio have teamed up to establish PLAYTIME!, a childcare service available during theatrical shows for ages 4 thru 12.  Children can be dropped off 45 minutes before and no later then 15 minutes before curtain, just enough time for parents to grab a drink (or two) before the show begins.  The hope of PLAYTIME!, is to bring parents back to the theater by providing excellent childcare at (or steps from) the theater at an extremely affordable rate. The service is available to any type of ticketbuyer for participating shows, regardless of the price paid for the ticket,and is just $15 per child. Sitters Studio is fully bonded and insured, and their rigorous background checks and training ensure that they provide not only an artistic and fun experience for children, but also one that complies with top-notch safety standards.(playtimenyc.org)

Making a name tag!

The pirate outfit she made!

Last weekend, my older daughter attended PLAYTIME! while my husband and I went to see Rated P for Parenthood,a new off broadway musical.  Check-in is on the 3rd floor of the Playwrights Horizons building but the room they play in is on the 5th floor.  Staff provided us with a contact card, in case of an emergency or if we needed to leave the show early.  Our daughter was assigned to a sitter prior to arrival and we were given a pouch that we needed to return to check out staff in order to pick her up. At pick-up her assigned sitter was available to answer questions and gave us a card that had a list of activities she participated in, a list of the snacks she ate (extremely great for me since she has a food allergy), and how she adjusted. Every couple of weeks, they change themes and last weekend happened to be a Pirate theme.  She had a wonderful time and has been doing a fashion show of the pirate outfit she made while singing songs she learned at PLAYTIME!   I was very impressed and would definitely use their service again.

Rated P for Parenthood, a new off-broadway musical  chronicles every stage of modern-day parenting, from conception to college, with giant doses of heart and humor. A versatile cast of four takes the audience through the ups and downs of childrearing—from the sublime to the ridiculous—in a series of comic and musical vignettes in under 90 minutes. Hilarious, fresh, and decidedly irreverent, Rated P provides all the wistful joy of childrearing…at a fraction of the cost of braces! (RatedPtheMusical.com).  I don’t think anyone can fully prepare for being a parent.  You have washed all the blankets and clothes, put the crib together, the stroller is ready to go and you are ready until….baby gets here…and then what?? What if you have a child that won’t stop screaming…what do you do?  What if your toddler says $h#* in public and everyone stops and stares?  How do you know which preschool you should apply to and what if you don’t get into the school of your choice, what next?  Becoming a parent is one roller coaster ride and you learn as you go.

Thank you MamaDrama and PLAYTIME!  for the opportunity to see Rated P for Parenthood, it couldn’t have come at a better time.  My girls are growing up so fast and I am already running into situations I don’t have an answer to or have no idea what the next step should be.  Recently, my (almost) two-year old has had an interest in going to the bathroom on the toilet and has wanted to sleep in a “big girl” bed.  My older daughter found a tampon a while back and asked me what it was.  I just took it away because I did not know how to explain it to her, she’s only 3 1/2.  The other day I found her with another tampon using it as a thermometer for her baby.  The last thing I want is for her to show up at a playgroup and pull out a tampon and take one of her friends temperatures as they play “doctor”.  She has also started asking about a baby brother.  She asked my husband if she could go to the baby store for a baby brother.  She is really determined to go to this store, when I saw Rated P, it really hit close to home, especially since they “try” to explain where a baby comes from to a child.  How do I tell her we cannot go to a store and BUY her a baby brother.  It also made me start thinking about what to do about school, how we will handle the teenage years and beyond because they will be here before we know it.  The show is beyond funny, don’t miss the text messages above the stage.  My husband does not like going to shows and was a little skeptical when I told him we were going.  I kept looking over at him and he was laughing most of the show.  It is the perfect show for parents and grandparents because it really hits home and you can relate to almost every scene.  If you are thinking about starting it will give you an idea of what is in store for you!

Check out the video below for a sneak peek of what to expect at Rated P for Parenthood.

To purchase tickets for Rated P for Parenthood click link or  you may use the Parenthood Insider discount code ($49.50 until 5/27/12) ,RPTHX88,at Broadway Offers which was provided after the show to share with friends.

After you get tickets, register your child for PLAYTIME! .

Other sites to visit:

FACEBOOK
MamaDrama

Playtime

Rated P for Parenthood

TWITTER

@Playtime_NYC

@MamaDramaNY

@RatedPMusical

Disclaimer: I received two tickets and a complimentary PLAYTIME! pass for the purpose of this review.  This did not alter my opinion about PLAYTIME! or Rated P for Parenthood.  

Enjoy Life: Crunchy Cookies {Allergy-Friendly}

13 Mar

It is hard to find a store-bought cookie that isn’t processed in a facility containing tree nuts and peanuts.  Enjoy Life’s new line of crunchy cookies are gluten-free, dairy free and peanut/ tree nut free.  I received four boxes of Enjoy Life Crunchy Cookies: Chocolate Chip, Double Chocolate, Vanilla Honey Graham, and Sugar Crisp.   They are super crunchy, and full of flavor.  The names of the flavors describe the taste. To get an idea of how crunchy they are, I could hear my husband sneaking them from the other room.  In fact, he snuck them before I could even start my review and ended up eating most of them along with my girls.  I was able to try at least one of each flavor and was surprised at how good they were since they are dairy free and gluten-free.  Right after I had Pela, I went gluten-free and didn’t find many brands that tasted good or even close to what I was used to.  Maddie and I have a sweet spot for chocolate so the Chocolate Chip and Double Chocolate Chip were our favorites.  Pela isn’t picky when it comes to dessert, so she LOVED them all.  They are a great alternative to bring to playgroups and school parties, when you are uncertain of whether there are any children with allergies.

Double Chocolate Crunchy Cookies and Chocolate Chip Crunchy Cookies

About each of the flavors (information from Enjoy Life):

Each box contains 14 cookies.

Chocolate Chip: Loaded with our Semi-Sweet Chocolate Mini Chips, these chocolate chip cookies will satisfy anyone’s cookie craving.

Ingredients: Flour Mix (White Rice Flour, Buckwheat Flour, Millet Flour), Chocolate Chips (Evaporated Cane Juice, Chocolate Liquor (Non-Alcoholic), Non- Dairy Cocoa Butter), Palm Oil, Evaporated Cane Juice, Brown Pure Cane Sugar, Natural Flavor, Salt, Vanilla, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate, Baking Soda, Xanthan Gum, Rosemary Extract

Double Chocolate: All the rich chocolate of our chocolate chip cookie times two!

Ingredients: Flour Mix (White Rice Flour, Buckwheat Flour, Millet Flour), Chocolate Chips (Evaporated Cane Juice, Chocolate Liquor (Non-Alcoholic), Non-Dairy Cocoa Butter), Palm Oil, Brown Pure Cane Sugar, Evaporated Cane Juice, Natural Process Cocoa Powder, Natural Flavors, Vanilla, Salt, Baking Soda, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate, Xanthan Gum, Rosemary Extract

Vanilla Honey Graham (left) and Sugar Crisp (right)

Sugar Crisp: Rich, buttery flavor with that added touch of sugar on top!

Ingredients:Flour Mix (White Rice Flour, Millet Flour, Buckwheat Flour), Evaporated Cane Juice, Palm Oil, Brown Pure Cane Sugar, Natural Flavor, Salt, Vanilla, Baking Soda, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate, Xanthan Gum, Rosemary Extract

Vanilla Honey Graham: Satisfy that craving for a graham cracker with this cookie!

Ingredients:
Flour Mix (Brown & White Rice Flour, Buckwheat Flour, Millet Flour), Palm Oil, Brown Pure Cane Sugar, Evaporated Cane Juice, Honey, Natural Flavors, Vanilla, Salt, Baking Soda, Xanthan Gum, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate, Rosemary Extract

Allergen Information for all flavors: NO TRANS FAT, NO ARTIFICIAL INGREDIENTS, VEGAN, KOSHER PAREVE, GLUTEN-FREE, CASEIN-FREE

To find out more about ingredients check out Enjoy Life’s Ingredient Glossary.

How we ate our Enjoy Life Crunchy Cookies:

  • As an on the go snack
  • Perfect for dunking in milk (soy or rice milk too depending on your allergy needs)
  • Maddie got creative and made a strawberry marshmallow treat with the Double Chocolate Chip Crunchy Cookie.

A special treat Maddie made for daddy!

  • Make an ice cream sandwich for dessert.  We used the recipe from Downtown Bookworks : The Do It MySelf Kids’ Cookbook.
I am a big fan of Enjoy Life products.  See some of my past reviews/ posts: Enjoy Life: Eat FreelyRaspberry Chocolate Chip Pancakes, and Allergy-Free Cooking at Kids Food Festival NYC
Enjoy Life on Twitter (@ELFCeo), Facebook, and their Website.
Keep checking back for a Enjoy Life Crunchy Cookie Giveaway!

Disclaimer:  I received 4 boxes of Enjoy Life’s Crunchy Cookies for the purpose of this review.  The boxes did not impact my opinions.  All opinions expressed are my own!

Photo Op: Say CUPCAKE!

11 Mar

The one thing we lack in our apartment are professional pictures of the girls.  We have one picture of my husband and I with Maddie from before Pela was born.   We keep talking about getting them done but we never do.  We invested in a nice digital camera when I was pregnant with Maddie, swearing that I would capture every moment and not need professional photos done.  The only problem with that was you need to know how to use the camera to get good shots and then you have to print them. I have so many pictures of both of the girls but they are all on my memory cards. I regret not getting professional photos of the girls after they were born and when they turned 1.  Although, my pictures are ok, they are definitely not making it above the couch.

For the past couple of years we have gone back and forth with taking pictures.  Around the holidays we take the girls to see Santa and the Easter Bunny…that’s as professional as we have gotten.  When we get there the girls end up screaming and the pictures turn out comical and go right to the memory box.  This year I decided to skip the Easter Bunny.  My cousin in Virginia gets her kids pictures with chicks every Easter and they always turn out adorable. I googled where I could get pics of the girls done with chicks in New York City and came across Portrait Bug.  I immediately scheduled an appointment for their chick session, which take place the last two weekends in March.  Hopefully, I can get a good picture of the girls to go over the couch with or without the chicks.

As I was reading about Portrait Bug and all of their sessions, I came across the cupcake smash session for first birthdays!  How adorable to capture that moment the cupcake hits the child’s face.  As I mentioned, I regret not getting pictures done around the girls first birthday, as a lot of people do.  This is one photo opportunity that could be cherished for a lifetime and would be great decoration for your kitchen walls.

About the Portrait Bug Cupcake Smash(click to see more images):

Disclaimer: I did not receive compensation from this post.  All opinions expressed are my own.  All images are from Portrait Bug.

Travel Thursday: What I Learned In New Orleans

8 Mar

What I learned in New Orleans A few weekends ago I went to New Orleans for a Bachelorette party. It was a great girls weekend away with my closest friends but it made me realize a few things:

  1.  I don’t regret being a young mom, being a parent at any age is difficult, but three days of drinking and staying out all night was more work then being a stay at home mom.  It took me a week to recover.
  2. I am terrified for the girls to become teenagers and young adults. It was college Spring Break and Mardi Gras had just ended. I saw so many girls showing their boobs and doing things for beads I never hope my girls do. It made me look at Spring Break from a parents perspective. I can only imagine what my parents were thinking when I went on Spring Break.
  3.  As much as I complain about how hard it is to stay home with the girls I missed them and my husband so much. I missed the laughter from their room in the morning, the hugs, random “I love you’s” throughout the day, snuggling on the couch before bed, goodnight kisses ,and even the screams.. A weekend away was needed but I was ready to get home to the girls by the end.
  4. New Orleans is more than just eating, drinking and beads. It has great shopping too.
  5.  Enjoy every bite of every meal when you don’t have children hanging on you and trying to run in circles around the restaurant. It was nice to sit and have a conversation with my close friends.

I was able to take some pictures of our culinary experiences to share in case any of you are ever there and need ideas for eating out. We did not have one bad meal while we were down there.  The food was DELICIOUS.

Mr. B's Bacon Wrapped Shrimp and Grits

Mr. B's Pecan Pie...I can't remember the last time I had something with nuts!

Cafe Du Monde- Amazing Beignets and Coffee Au Lait

Cafe Du Monde Beignet's: Best Fresh!

Muffuletta (italian Meats, Cheese, and Olive Salad) from Central Grocery

A quick stop at Pat O'Briens for a Hurricane ( a little too sweet for me but I had to try one)!

Jacques- Imo's Cafe- A must if you go to New Orleans, great food and a great time. Try the Watermelon Mojito!

Jacques- Imo's Cafe: Shrimp and Alligator Sausage Cheesecake Appetizer

Grilled Mahi-Mahi at Jacques- Imo's Cafe

A great way to start brunch at Cafe Amelie!

Crawfish Fritatta at Cafe Amelie!

I couldn’t leave New Orleans without presents for the girls so I stopped into this little children’s store.  The girls each got a mask and an adorable book The Bourban Street Band is Back by Shankman & O’Neill.

Eating Out: Cups for Kids, Meals for Kids, Why Not Utensils for Kids??

5 Mar

Whenever we go out to eat, the girls have difficulty using the adult size utensils and throughout the meal one or more of their utensils usually ends up on the floor. I always wonder why kid-friendly restaurants have kids cups, kids meals but never any kids utensils. Over the weekend, I was looking through a One Step Ahead magazine and stumbled across this child size flatware set that would be perfect for restaurants to set for children who dine.  Unlike most utensils for kids which are bright-colored or have a character on them, this set is made of “durable, high-gloss stainless steel which inspire grown-up manners” (One Step Ahead).  I am going to have to invest in a set for when we play “Fancy Restaurant“, when we have friends over for a nice dinner, or to take with us when we go out to eat.  Kid-friendly restaurants should definitely consider investing this great utensil set.

Image from One Step Ahead

Disclaimer:  I did not receive compensation for this post. All opinions expressed are my own.

OOGAA {GIVEAWAY}

2 Mar

A couple of weeks ago, I came across the oogaa  mealtime set (read my post).  The girls received samples and love them.   They ask to use the spoons everyday. See how we used our oogaa bowl for a granola treat and keep checking back for ways to use your oogaa bowl in the oven. If you do not have an oogaa  mealtime set already, make mealtime fun and enter to win the oogaa mealtime set below. For more information about oogaa products, visit oogaa.com .

image from oogaa.com

To Enter: Leave a comment on one or more of our pages below with OOGAA CHOO- CHOO VROOM

Contest will end March 9 at 12pm. Winner will be chosen randomly.  Buy now if you can’t wait.  Good Luck!

Information about the silicone mealtime set from oogaa :

About silicone

  • Will not corrode or deteriorate like plastic products
  • Silicone will not support the growth of fungus, mould or bacteria
  • Silicone is odourless and tasteless
  • Silicone is heat resistant, microwave safe & dishwasher safe

Cleaning and care

  • Safe for dishwasher, microwave, oven (up to 500 degrees F), freezer (to -40 degrees F) & electric sterilizers
  • Stains may be removed by washing with hot soapy water
  • Dry products with a towel to avoid water-marks
  • Store products in a dry place
  • Do not store the products in direct sunlight