Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Stock Up!

Awhile back, I found a really simple recipe for making use of your leftover chicken/turkey dinners to make home made stock.  (I unfortunately do not remember where I got the recipe from.)  I've always wanted to learn how...not only does making home made stock make great use of leftovers from those huge dinners we make over the holidays but it gives us the opportunity to make it to our own tasting AND save a little money while we are at it! 

On Christmas Eve, I made a small (yet big to my little family) chicken dinner with all the extras including stuffing, green bean casserole and salad.  It was delicious!  Following dinner and removing any leftover meat from the chicken carcass, I put the remaining chicken into a large pot with a few other ingredients, let it simmer for an hour and voila!  It had to be the best chicken stock my palate has ever tasted!


If you are interested, below is this super easy recipe:
  • 1 turkey or chicken carcass, meat and skin removed
  • 1/2 cup white wine (optional)
  • 1 onion, quartered
  • 2 carrots, cut into chunks
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 whole peppercorns
Add all the ingredients into a large pot, cover with water, season generously with salt and bring to a boil.  Cover and simmer on med-low for one hour.  Strain broth into a large bowl and discard remains.  Use in any recipes that call for broth:)

I halved the recipe since my chicken was very small and the stock turned out wonderfully.  When it was finished simmering, I let it completely cool, then put it into a container and let it further cool in the refrigerator. Then, I put it into a freezer safe container to be frozen until needed.

Enjoy,

Mommy Bridget

Friday, December 24, 2010

Happy Holidays from the Curious Mommy and Book Giveaway Reminder-ending 12/27

From my family to all of yours, I wish you all wonderful holidays!  May your days be blessed with happiness and good cheer...

Also, I know you are all busy busy with family plans over the next few days.  But don't forget my final giveaway of the year is ending on Sunday 12/27 at midnight.  This giveaway is so great...and surprisingly, I have not had one entry.  So any of you interested in winning a great book filled with inspiring stories of what it truly means to give during this giving season...your chances are great great GREAT!!!  To enter the giveaway, click here.

Stay tuned for many new and exciting giveaways to come in 2011!!!

Mommy Bridget

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Having a New Baby, I Could Never Live Without My...

In preparation for baby to arrive, I've been going through the baby items I have, marking off what I won't be needing and writing down items I would have liked to have last time around.  This was so much fun for me and so I thought, for any of you about to be first time moms, this list could be really helpful.  

I remember feeling overwhelmed when I was doing my baby registry last pregnancy because I really had absolutely no idea what I would be needing.  I had a good friend meet me at my registry stores to go through the items and tell me what I would need (and better yet, explained to me what the items were for!)  Anyways, I hope this is helpful.  For anyone else who thinks I forgot something important or would like to add anything, please do!  (By the way, the brands of items are my personal preference.  There are many great brands of the types of items below and I was in no way paid for advertising said items.  These are truly my faves!)
  • Wipey Warmer  (Trust me when I say, you don't want to shock your baby's bum with cold wipes.  This helps make diaper changing a breeze.)
                                                      

                                                                         
  • Earth Mama Angel Baby Bottom Balm (We might have been just plain lucky, but Park never had diaper rash.  This bottom balm was always a part of our after bath time routine and I attribute it to this wonder balm.)
     

  • baby nail clipper (Any brand will do, as long as it is made for baby fingers.  But it is very important! Babies little finger nails are like razors and they easily scratch up their little faces with them if they aren't trimmed properly.)
  • Diapers and wipes:)
  • digital baby thermometer
  • Infant Tylenol (good to have on hand in case it's necessary)
  • burp cloths
  • pacifier (if your baby takes it, use it!)
  • soy latte (for me! self explanatory)
  • midwife (for support)
  • nursing pads (if breastfeeding, these are a necessity) 
  • nursing tank top
  • nipple cream (I used it everyday and never had any cracking or bleeding like I've heard can happen.)
  • baby wrap for infants ( I never left home without one!  I could do anything as long as my baby was inside our wrap.  He would sleep snugly or when he was awake, he was very content.  I don't think he cried while inside this once.  My baby was so cozy being held close to me and there are a multitude of benefits to wearing your baby.)
  •  Modmum sling carrier once your baby is up, alert and likes to see his surroundings.  This sling is so handy to take anywhere, it fits nicely in your purse and takes 5 seconds to put on and put you baby inside.  Park and I used this until he was 2 years old.

  • Nature's Baby Organics baby wash (This is what we used, still use and will swear up and down is perfect for baby skin.  Any mild, non-toxic and extremely gentle baby wash will do.)  
 
              
That is all for now.  I can't think of what else I highly recommend.  And again, as I said earlier if anyone wants to add anything, please do!



~Mommy Bridget


    Monday, December 20, 2010

    Recipe: Blueberry Croissant Bread Pudding

    Despite the name, this delectable dish isn't so much a pudding because it has the consistency of a quiche.  Nonetheless, it doesn't even matter...it is SO yummy!  I made it for the first time yesterday and loved it so much that I knew it would be wrong not to share it with you.  This is a great dish to make any day of the week, or for a holiday brunch or even for a play date hosted at your house!

    'Tis the season to enjoy!


    Blueberry Croissant Bread Pudding
    • 2 extra large croissants or 3 regular
    • 1/2 cup Smucker's Orchard's Finest Northwoods Blueberry Preserves (or equivalent)
    • 3 large eggs
    • 1 14 oz. can Eagle Brand sweetened condensed milk
    • 3/4 cup water
    • 2 tbsps. melted butter
    • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
    • 1/4 ts. cinnamon
    Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Coat 9" square baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.  Cut croissants in half, lengthwise.  Spread each half with 1 tablespoon preserves and replace tops.  Cut into small strips and place in prepared baking dish.  Using small spoonfuls, dab remaining preserves sporadically over the top.

    Whisk eggs.  Whisk in condensed milk, water, butter, vanilla and cinnamon until blended.  Pour over croissants, pressing down large pieces so the liquid can cover them.  Let stand 5 minutes.

    Bake 45 minutes or until done.  Cool 15 minutes.  Serve sprinkled with powdered sugar.

    Enjoy!!!

    Saturday, December 18, 2010

    Druide Winner

    Congratulations to Yuki, the winner of the Druide giveaway!  Thank you to all for entering and please check out the wonderful products by Druide online.

    Her entry below was chosen at random:

    Yuki said...
    I follow The Curious Case of Mommyhood on Google Follower

    Friday, December 17, 2010

    Air Pollution and Autism

    For close to a decade now, I've seen the same reports of autism rates in Utah as one of the highest per capita in the nation.  Before I ever began looking deeper into the subject of autism, I always asked myself the same question over and over again...what is it about Utah that could make autism rates so high?  What is it in our environment that distinguishes our children from other children in the US?  And time and time again, I came with this answer: our air pollution.

    It is my strong belief that individuals are genetically predisposed to autism.  Furthermore, I believe that there are environmental factors that can "trigger" autism in those same individuals.  Those triggers COULD be toxins in our air, toxins in our water, and vaccines, (to name a few).   These days, all I ever hear or read about is whether or not vaccines cause autism.  So when a friend of mine with Utah Moms for Clean Air came across this article and sent it my way (thank you Cherise!), I couldn't pass up the chance to share it with all of you.

    Here is the link:

    http://www.latimes.com/health/la-he-autism-20101217,0,2040535.story

    I strongly believe that more attention and research needs to be focused on links between autism and toxin exposure, specifically in utero and during the first 2 years of life. 

    ~Curious Mommy

    My friend Mel sent me this link to another great article from Huffington Post that is a really great read and further supports this possible connection.  This link is:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-mark-hyman/autism-research-discovery_b_794967.html

    Thanks Mel!

    Wednesday, December 15, 2010

    Druide Giveaway Ending this Friday-12/17 LOW ENTRIES!!!


    Hello everyone!  The fabulous Druide giveaway is ending this Friday and entries are low.  If you are interested in winning the product of your choice (yay!), click here to enter before midnight 12/17.

    Good luck to you all,

    Mommy Bridget

    Tuesday, December 14, 2010

    Be the Change...

    In regards to the book review I recently posted about a man named Patrick Atkinson, Diane Sawyer will be doing a show for 20/20 called Be the Change in which she will talk about him on ABC.  The show will be aired this Friday 12/17 at 10/9c.  Check your local listing for exact times.  It should be a great documentary!

    Co-sleeping with the Already Independently SleepingToddler

    Last night, as I checked in on my little man around 10 pm to turn off his nighttime tunes and humidifier, I realized he was still awake in his little bed.  I went over to rub his back in hopes that he would relax enough to close his sleepy eyes, but instead he grabbed my arm and hugged it tightly close to him, turned over with my arm in tow and tried to get into sleep position.  It broke my heart.

    I've always felt it is so completely unnatural for our babies to go to sleep alone in a room each night.

    My son co-slept with my husband and I for the first year of his life.  I always knew we would do this, as the benefits of co-sleeping are substantial for nurturing the growth of our babies.  But co-sleeping for us, and unlike what many parents will profess, left us so entirely sleep deprived.  I could never get relaxed enough to sleep well.  With every peep and movement Park made, my husband and I were very aware and alert.  I'm sure a lot of our sleep deprivation had to do with being first time parents.  Well, that and the fact I was a human pacifier for a year.  But we pushed through, knowing that sleeping with Park, while he was so little and needed us, was our only option.

    By the time Park was a year old, I had physically had enough.  I couldn't go any longer with the sleepless nights and felt Park was old enough to be in his own bed.  I truly, 100% felt that I wasn't the capable mother I so longed to be because of the mental and physical exhaustion.  So we moved him into his own bedroom.  We were happy to see it wasn't much of a challenge to make the change.   And we were all getting rest again.

    Now he is 2 and a half, he goes to nap time and bedtime perfectly...he actually climbs into his bed each and every day with a smile on his face.  He sleeps soundly through the night and over the last few months, has been sleeping in later and later everyday...something we only dreamed would happen because for the first 2 years of his life, he always awoke around 5:30 am (yuck!).  So although Park is sleeping well and has long ago accepted his own bed as comfort enough, I realized I have yet to.

    Every night I lay him down to sleep, and rub his back and tell him I love him and sweet dreams, I feel an enormous amount of guilt.  I personally hate to go to sleep alone in our bed and in our bedroom, so I can't imagine how my little guy feels going to bed all alone in a room while his parents are in other parts of the house.  I can see why my little guy comes into our bedroom the minute he wakes up in the morning only to climb in between my husband and I to snuggle and go back to sleep for another hour or two.  I would!

    Last night, Park came into our room very early...he brought his puppy stuffed animal in with him, climbed into our bed and slept soundly until eight this morning.  EIGHT!  That's officially the latest he has ever slept in.  When he woke up, he rolled over, kissed me good morning and rubbed my head.  I know many of you are probably thinking that I'm beginning a "bad habit" by letting him back into our room.  But the thing is, I enjoy my son sleeping with us.  I want him to know he is always welcome with us, that he can trust us and feel secure by us.  And now that we don't nurse anymore, and now that he is a big enough boy that we don't need to worry about his every move, I can sleep soundly too.  I feel that because of this new connection, or rather old one reappearing, I feel even closer to my baby boy.

    Coincidentally, since Park started coming into our bed in the early mornings he has been a happier child.  He is getting more hours of sleep each night, something that I always knew he really needed to have.  He has made remarkable progress with his speaking, communicating and growing as an individual.  He has been eating better and has more energy during our days.  I can't help but think to myself that maybe he was not ready to move into his own room at a year old...while at the same time I can't feel I made a mistake moving him because I positively needed him to sleep in another bed.  I was alarmingly exhausted at all times.  And a sleep deprived mother is not a good mother, in my eyes.

    And so we have a family bed again. 

    Happily Yours Truly,

    Mommy Bridget

    Monday, December 13, 2010

    Waste-free School Lunches: Join the Movement and Save $$!

    Waste-free School Lunches: Join the Movement and Save $$!
    (written by Cherise Udell)

    How is this for an incentive: create a waste-free school lunch every day and
    save $250 per child! If you have two kids that is a $500 savings and essentially
    a free weekend away with your sweetie!  Four kids and your bank account will
    bulge with an extra $1000.  Hmmmm…what are all of the things you could do with
    an extra $1,000….
    Okay, other than saving money, why should you care about making waste-free
    lunches?  How about these scary numbers:
    The average  school-aged child generates  67 pounds of lunchbox trash per school
    year. With approximately 25 million American children carrying lunch to school
    five days a week that translates to 3.5 billion pounds of lunchbox
    garbage each school year.  YIKES!
    Just consider the innocuous napkin:  Americans use about 2,200 napkins a year,
    per person, on average six a day, most of which end up in the trash, many
    without even being used.  In addition to napkins being tossed,  plastic baggies,
    tin foil, milk cartons, straws, plastic silverware and general plastic packaging
     all follow with a kerplunk right into the trash bin.  As our planet groans
    under the weight of our human-generated trash (did you know there is an island
    of trash floating in the Pacific ocean that is twice the size of Texas?!), we
    need to re-evaluate our everyday habits. A waste-free lunch is an easy
    achievable goal that can be put into practice with only a little preparation, so
    ditch the disposables and show your kids you care about the planet and their
    future.
    ******************************

    ************
    For more information about waste-free lunches, great lunchbox menu ideas and
    reusable kid-friendly containers please visit these websites:
    www.laptoplunches.com
    Great selection of  BPA, lead, PVC and phthalates-free bento boxes, plus a
    creative menu archive with accompanying photos for inspiration.
    www.kidskonserve.com
    Fun BPA, lead, PVC and phthalates-free products. Offers a cost-comparison chart
    to show you how much money you can save by replacing disposable items with those
    that are reusuable.
    www.wastefreelunches.org

    Non-profit organization promoting waste-free lunches.
    ***************************************
    By Cherise Udell
    Founder, Utah Moms for Clean Air
    utahmomsforcleanair.org

    Sunday, December 12, 2010

    The Dream Maker Book Review and Giveaway- ends 12/27

    The Dream Maker Book Review and Giveaway- ends 12/27
    I've decided that this will be my last review and giveaway before the holidays.  And like the saying goes, I've truly saved the best for last.  This book is near and very dear to my heart as it is a biography of the life of an extraordinary man, a man that exemplifies in his life what it means to help those in need, to sacrifice for the good of others and to live showing others what we are capable of achieving if only we believe.

    Patrick Atkinson, born and raised in my hometown of Bismarck, North Dakota grew up a curious young boy with endless amounts of energy and a heart filled with the passion for his religious beliefs.  As a young adult, Atkinson experienced a near death encounter while on a boy scouting canoe trip.  His book tells the story of being drug down into watery depths where he struggles to break loose and ultimately gives in to what he foresees as no hope for survival, and begins to die.  This is where his faith in his religion is deepened and when pulled out of the water to be brought back to survival, realized his soul purpose in life was to serve God through others.

    What Atkinson has accomplished in his life so far is nothing short of a dream.  He has remarkably saved hundreds if not thousands of lives, all awhile nearly losing his own time and time again.  Reading The Dream Maker (written by Monica Hannan) is an inspiring true story of a hero living among us.  And by reading this, you are reminded of our moral obligation to help others less fortunate, to serve our life and other lives with a purpose whether it be through your faith in your religion or your faith in humanity.  

    Patrick Atkinson founded, among other organizations, The God's Child Project

    Since its founding, The GOD'S CHILD Project has grown, through the grace of God and the support of thousands of volunteers and benefactors worldwide, to where it now cares for and educates 5,000 orphaned, abandoned, and poverty-stricken children, and nearly 8,700 widowed, abandoned, and single mothers and their dependents in many of our world's poorest neighborhoods.

    The Dream Maker tells about much of this organization and the lives affected by Patrick Atkinson, volunteers and benefactors who help to continue The God's Child Project's works.

    If you are interested in learning more about The God's Child Project, click here.  


    How you can help:
    With the holidays right around the corner, there is never a better time than right now to give to those who truly are in need.  The God's Child Project has a "Christmas Wish List" for needy families around the globe.  For example, for only $9 you can purchase two meals a day for a student for an entire month.  Or for only $8, you can provide full time care for an AIDS orphan for an entire week in AIDS stricken Malawi.  This is a great way to not only help others who are in dire need of your help, but to get your family involved to show what it truly means to give during this giving season.

    Thank you so much to Patrick Atkinson and E.T. Nedder Publishing for letting me review The Dream Maker and for hosting such a wonderful giveaway on my blog.


    Win it:
    Although I was lucky enough to have the opportunity to read and review this remarkable book about Patrick Atkinson's life, his stories of trials and success and of the wonderful organizations he has lived day in day out to care for, I was also provided another copy of The Dream Maker for one of my lucky readers to win on The Curious Case of Mommyhood!  


    To enter:
    ***REMEMBER: POST A COMMENT FOR EACH ENTRY***
    ***Also, remember to leave your email address with your comments so you can be reached*** 
    Subscribe to my blog (located on the left side of my home page) and tell me if you have heard of The God's Child Project.  This is MANDATORY to enter the giveaway.

    You also have the opportunity for additional entries (one each) if you do any of the following:
    • follow The Curious Case of Mommyhood on Google Follower
    • tell me something else about Patrick Atkinson, his book The Dream Maker or anything else about his organizations
    • like The Curious Case of Mommyhood on Facebook
    • like Patrick Atkinson on Facebook
    • like The God's Child Project on Facebook
    • repost this giveaway on your facebook page and post the link with your entry
    • follow The Curious Mommy on Twitter
    Again, please be sure to leave your email address with each entry.
    You have until December 27th at midnight to enter.
    Good luck to you all,

    Mommy Bridget

    The Dream Maker was provided to me by E. T. Nedder Publishing for review.  All opinions on the book are purely my own.  (Please see my Disclosure under my "Reviews" page for more information.)








    Saturday, December 11, 2010

    The Ecoland Winner Is...

    Congratulations to Allison, the winner of the Ecoland giveaway!!! 
    Thank you to all for entering and don't forget you have one week left to enter the Druide giveaway!
    ~Curious Mommy

    Tuesday, December 7, 2010

    Don't Forget To Enter/Ecoland Giveaway Ends This Friday!!!

    For those of you interested in winning a set of organic cotton toddler socks from Ecoland, don't forget to enter this fabulous giveaway ending this Friday, 12/10!  Click here to enter.  Last time I looked, entries are super low so your chance is super good!

    Mommy Bridget

    Monday, December 6, 2010

    Utah's Toxic Air...A Note From Utah Moms For Clean Air


    (for those of you who live in Utah, this post is for you)

    I will say it again, ARRRGGHHHHHHHHH!!!!  As a mother of two young children
    whose lungs are still developing, I feel sick that my babes are forced to
    breathe this smelly gunk we call air. Every time we enter this toxic haze, my
    heart sinks wondering what impact this is having on their tiny lungs and hearts,
    not to mention their life-time cancer risk.    As of today, we have had three
    RED air alerts in a row, the first, but surely not the last, of this winter's
    inversion season.  I feel deeply frustrated already and I wonder how I will
    manage the entire winter.... physically, psychologically.... sometimes I feel it
    would be so much easier to just move my family.  But, we love Utah, we love Salt
    Lake City, we love our home, our community, the mountains....so I continue the
    fight for the right to breathe clean air.  


    To find out about current air quality (or lack thereof) conditions check out Utah's  Department of Air Quality (www.airquality.utah.gov/) You can also sign-up for air alerts on www.airquality.utah.gov. On Red air days such as today and thru this coming weekend, Utah Moms for Clean Air advises the following: 
     1. Keep children indoors as much as possible. Let them burn off that extra energy at bounce
    houses, your local gymnasium, indoor swimming pools, ice skating rinks or take them up the mountains for some snow play and blue sky.  

    2. Make sure your child's school has a plan in place for high pollution days.  Recess guidelines
    are available at:
    http://health.utah.gov/asthma/pdf_files/Air_Quality/guidance_jan08.pdf  

    3. Keep your windows and doors shut as much as possible and keep a HEPA-grade air purifier running in the areas most frequented by your family. At night, put a HEPA-grade air purifier in your sleeping quarters.  HEPA-grade vacuum cleaners are also available on the market.  
    4.  Add a few indoor air cleansing plants to your home such as spider plants, philodendron, peace lily, english ivy, ferns and palms.   
    5. Avoid running, biking and other high exertion activities.   
    6. Do not burn anything!   
    7. Minimize your driving. Do not idle your car for more than 10 to 30 SECONDS. Telecommute. Postpone trips that can wait, carpool or take public transportation.    
    8. Avoid drive-thru service windows.  
    9. Minimize your indoor air pollution by eliminating all scented candles and plug-in air "fresheners" (most of which host cancer-causing chemicals). Non-scented candles are available at Whole Foods and Salt Lake's Earth Goods General Store.    
    10.  Also minimize the Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) you bring into your home. This may sound overwhelming, especially if this is the first time you have heard of them and have no idea what they are, but the basic rule of thumb is if you can smell off-gassing (that new car or carpet smell smell, the smell of new plastic, a recent paint job or a strong chemical whiff of cleaning products etc) then it probably has VOCs. VOCs are a huge environmental health concern due to the breadth of irritating symptoms they cause (see www.epa.gov/iaq/voc.html#Health%20Effects) and their cancer-causing potential. Nearly all products containing VOCs can be replaced with healthier alternatives. For example wool carpet or FLOR's unique carpet tiles (flor.com) are usually nontoxic and do not create that nasty off-gas smell.  Get indoor air pollution alerts at MedlinePlus (part of the National Institutes for Health): www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/indoorairpollution.html.
    11. Breathe Utah has a new and very useful Emergency Red Air Action plan that you can custom fit to your family (breatheutah.org).

    Cherise Udell
    Founder, Utah Moms for Clean Air
    utahmomsforcleanair.org

    Saturday, December 4, 2010

    And the Winner is...

    Congratulations to Jessy, the winner of the Peter Rabbit Organic's giveaway!!!  Her entry of:

    freridejes said...
    I like your blog on facebook  December 2, 2010 8:06 AM 

    Friday, December 3, 2010

    Druide Review and Giveaway- ends 12/17

    Druide Review and Giveaway- ends 12/17
    Druide, a Canadian based company, carries natural and organic products certified by ECOCERT for you and your family.  They carry everything from baby care products to hair care products to a line of hygienic products safe to use in the great outdoors!  Druide carries everything you might want or need in and around your home or while traveling. And with a mission to commit their company to surpass the strictest of ecological standards across the globe, you cannot go wrong supporting them.

    We had the opportunity to review some of Druide's wonderful body care products for babies.  We reviewed their Baby Starter Kit:
    • Calming baby soap (100g)
    • Baby shampoo (175ml)
    • Baby protecting balm (60g)
    • Baby soothing lotion (175ml)
    • Travel Kit / a long-lasting pouch that will be very useful in many occasions
    And Druide's Banana Toothpaste specially made for first teeth:
     
    •  In harmony with oral flora and natural pH levels. 
    • Free from sugar and Xyllitol
    • Free from artificial flavors and colors.
    • Based on bamboo silica, that eliminates/reduces the buildup of plaque and tartar deposits.
    • Very gentle and effective (as opposed to calcium in conventional toothpaste).
    • Strengthens gum tissue due to plant-derived calcium lactate.
    • Reduces teeth sensitivity; diminishes and prevents spots thanks to the sanitizing effect of the natural ingredients. 
    • Irritant-free:
    1. Free from irritating soap agent; Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS).
    2. No petrochemicals or synthetic agents. Free from chlorine, fluoride (sodium fluoride).
    • Guaranteed 100% non-toxic vegetable derived Sorbitol. Does not inflame the mouth or the palate. Enjoy your food directly after brushing. 
    • 100% recyclable container made with 100% HDPE, with low environmental impact
    I absolutely love Druide's baby starter kit.  I have mentioned time and time again how dry our environment is and therefore how dry my son's sensitive skin is.  Druide's baby calming soap and hair wash are perfect for my son's needs.  With its mild soap and very light and mild texture, my son's skin was clean and left feeling already moisturized even before I applied his nightly lotion!
     
    Druide's protecting balm and soothing lotion was a great addition to our nighttime routine.  Following bath time, we always cover our son's sensitive skin in a great moisturizer from head to toe and use a bit of balm to protect his bottom from the effects of diaper use.  We also liked these two products very much and can depend on using the same products on the even more sensitive skin of our infant who is arriving soon!
     
    Druide's protective lotion and balm are free from:
    • Gluten
    • Nuts and nut traces
    • Animal derivatives
    • Petroleum derivatives and other mineral oils
    • Talc
    And their products are
    guaranteed to not contain estrogens and GMO's so you can rest assured these products are nothing but the best for your little ones!

    Druide's toothpastes are certified organic and made free of:
    • sulfates
    • saccharin
    • flouride
    My son reviewed their Banana Toothpaste, which is derived from natural ingredients and free from sugar, artificial colors and flavors.  It is extremely gentle for your little one's first teeth and irritant free.  I am very fond of this toothpaste for first toothpaste users.  However, my son did not take a liking to it.  I'm assuming that it was the banana flavor that through him off.  I'm sure if we tried another flavor he would find one he enjoyed.

    Thank you so much to Druide for letting us review their eco-conscious and healthy products for my son and for giving us the chance to learn more about their wonderful company.

    Buy it:
    You can purchase Druide's products online.
    Orders over $60 have no shipping charge.
    If you are located in Quebec or Ontario, click here to find a store nearest you.

    Win it:
    Druide wants to know what product of theirs you would like to try and is offering to give away that product to one lucky winner on The Curious Case of Mommyhood!
    To Enter:
    ***REMEMBER: POST A COMMENT FOR EACH ENTRY***
    ***Also, remember to leave your email address with your comments so you can be reached*** 
    Subscribe to my blog (located on the left side of my home page) and tell me another Druide product you would love to have (they have so many to choose from!).  This is MANDATORY to enter the giveaway.

    You also have the opportunity for additional entries (one each) if you do any of the following:
    • follow The Curious Case of Mommyhood on Google Follower
    • tell me something else about Druide's products
    • like The Curious Case of Mommyhood on Facebook
    • like Druide on Facebook
    • repost this giveaway on your facebook page and post the link with your entry
    • follow The Curious Mommy on Twitter
    • follow Druide on Twitter
    Again, please be sure to leave your email address with each entry.
    You have until December 17th at midnight to enter.
    Good luck to you all,

    Mommy Bridget

    Druide's products were provided to me by Druide for review.  (Please see my Disclosure under my "Reviews" page for more information.)


    Wednesday, December 1, 2010

    Benefits of Probiotics

    I was so delighted to see an article in our local newspaper about a recent study by the American Academy of Pediatrics recently published in the journal Pediatrics discussing the "possibility" of benefits from probiotic usage in children.  

    To view that abstract, click here.

    First of all, let me just say I have no doubt in my mind that it isn't just a "possibility" but that there are great benefits to probiotics for most children and adults.

    Humans have well over 500 different bacteria living naturally in our stomach and intestinal tract and these bacteria play a vital role in our body's health.  The study used examples of the benefits of probiotic use in children.  It discussed:
    • probiotics, taken early during bouts of diarrhea from a viral infection, may shorten the duration of the illness in otherwise healthy individuals
    • probiotic use coinciding with the use of antibiotics will help prevent the side effect of diarrhea from the antibiotic use in individuals
    Other known uses for probiotics (not proven in the study):
    • probiotic use can help with constipation
    • probiotic use can help with irritable bowel syndrome
    • probiotic use can help with Crohn's Disease
    • helps with eczema
    • helps with asthma
    • helps with acne (my dermatologist recommended it)
    I know I've spoken about this in the past but for any of you who have not heard it, this is my example of the power of use in probiotics in infants:

    When Park was born, I ended up with a UTI due to the catheter I was given during delivery.  Because of this, I was prescribed antibiotics.  I didn't know that because I used antibiotics, it passed through my breast milk and affected Park's already sensitive stomach.  He was a "gassy" infant and always seemed uncomfortable. Unfortunately, nothing I tried seemed to alleviate the problem.  I always felt bad for him and knew he would be a more relaxed infant if he didn't suffer from an upset stomach.

    When he was 2 1/2 months old, I phoned my chiropractor because I had heard rumors that a simple adjustment in infants can help digestive problems.  Before we scheduled the appointment to bring Park in, my chiropractor asked me if I had ever taken antibiotics since delivering.  I explained that I had.  She suggested I try giving Park a probiotic for a few weeks and if that didn't help, then to bring him in.

    So I picked up a probiotic suitable for infants from Whole Foods and began administering it to Park.  In only 3 days, and I'm not exaggerating, Park was a completely different child.  His gas was gone.  I felt horrible that all along it had been something I had done that made is poor little tummy hurt.  Fortunately, I discovered the root of the problem and knew how to fix it!

    There really are so many great benefits to making sure your intestinal tract has a healthy amount of bacteria in it.  I hope they continue studying the importance of this bacteria on other parts of the human body so the public can be more aware of keeping up on probiotics, whether in food or supplements.  Now that I know more about the importance of probiotics, I've always made sure my family has an adequate amount...and I know we have benefited from it in many many ways. 

    Below are some great resources for more information on benefits of probiotic usage:
    Have a wonderful day,

    Mommy Bridget

    REMINDER: Peter Rabbit Organics Review and Giveaway-ends this Friday!!!


    For all you organic food lovers, you MUST enter this giveaway.  Peter Rabbit Organics is giving away 10 of their fruit snack pouches to one lucky winner.  Entries are low so your chances are fantastic!  Go here to enter.
    Good luck!
    ~Mommy Bridget

    Monday, November 29, 2010

    Fun Times Recycling

    With all of our house remodeling and new purchases for baby James #2, our house has seen quite a bit of extra cardboard boxes laying around the house (which I hate to see...not the extra boxes per say but I hate to see all the garbage our home is intaking!)

    SO, my husband had a grand idea the other night.  Although we plan to recycle every last piece of cardboard...we might as well make some other use out of it!  And so my husband had a plan and went with it.



    And boy did we have a happy little man for a day...or actually a few days until the fort was completely destroyed.
    I was going to let Park paint the walls one afternoon but before I knew it, he had turned the fort on its side and made a slide out of it.  And then there was another day of fun to be had...

    It's amazing what you can do to entertain your child.  And not only was it fun for Park to have something new to enjoy, it was good family time constructing it and laughing our butts off at his thrills!

    Happy smiles all around,
    ~Mommy Bridget

    Sunday, November 28, 2010

    Ecoland Review and Giveaway- ends 12/10

    Ecoland Review and Giveaway-ends 12/10
    Ecoland Inc is a small, family owned and locally operated eco-conscious company devoted to environmentally sustainable practices that provides healthy products for its consumers.  They use organic cotton in all of their products and donate 3% of their proceeds to featured non-profit organizations.  Ecoland Inc is a model company and by supporting them through the purchases of their products, you are supporting environmentally safe practices with everyone's well being in mind.

    My son had the opportunity to review Ecoland's Boy's Striped Quarter Socks and their Boy's Tanks.

    And we love them!  They are so soft and luxurious to the touch, and I didn't realize until we reviewed them how fortunate we are to have these as a part of Park's wardrobe.  We have a set of clothes for casual wear around the house or underneath other clothing to keep warm, and this was a beautiful addition to our collection.  And it's a pleasant reminder to know that what is closest to his sensitive skin is nothing but the best of fabric, made from 100% organic cotton fibers (nothing made with the use of pesticides or other harmful toxic chemicals) and made from a wonderful company.

    Ecoland Inc. not only makes clothing apparel for our little ones, they also offer socks, underwear, intimates for women, spa and baby accessories and even gift sets...just perfect for your holiday gift list!  

    Buy it:
    You can purchase Ecoland products at their online store by clicking here.

    Win it:
    Ecoland is giving away their Toddler's Combo Crew Socks (set of 3) to one lucky winner on The Curious Case of Mommyhood!  (Open to US and Canada residents only)


    To Enter:
    ***REMEMBER: POST A COMMENT FOR EACH ENTRY***
    ***Also, remember to leave your email address with your comments so you can be reached*** 
    Subscribe to my blog (located on the left side of my home page) and tell me another Ecoland product you would love to have.  This is MANDATORY to enter the giveaway.

    You also have the opportunity for additional entries (one each) if you do any of the following:
    • follow The Curious Case of Mommyhood on Google Follower
    • tell me something else about Ecoland Inc's products
    • like The Curious Case of Mommyhood on Facebook
    • like Ecoland Inc on Facebook
    • repost this giveaway on your facebook page and post the link with your entry
    • follow The Curious Mommy on Twitter
    • follow Ecoland Inc on Twitter
    Again, please be sure to leave your email address with each entry.
    You have until December 10th at midnight to enter.
    Good luck to you all,

    Mommy Bridget 

    Ecoland's products were provided to me by Ecoland Inc. for review.  (Please see my Disclosure under my "Reviews" page for more information.)


    Saturday, November 27, 2010

    And the Winner is...

    Congratulations to Allison, the winner of the $10 gift certificate to Abby's Lane!!!  Thank you dearly to all who participated in this and other giveaways on The Curious Case of Mommyhood.  Don't forget to check out the current giveaways under way.

    Have a wonderful weekend!

    Mommy Bridget

    Thursday, November 25, 2010

    Giving Thanks


    Happy Thanksgiving Day to you all and happy to giving thanks to those we love!  I hope you all have a wonderful holiday and rest of your weekend, have safe travels and most of all, cherish the time with those close to you.  And remember why many of us celebrate this holiday, to give thanks for all that we have been blessed with.

    ~ Mommy Bridget

    Wednesday, November 24, 2010

    Abby's Lane $10 Gift Certificate Ends this Friday-11/28

    There are only a few days left to enter the $10 gift certificate giveaway from Abby's Lane.  If you haven't entered yet, you must!  Abby's Lane sells many baby products online, especially everything for your cloth diapering needs.  Click here to enter.

    ~Curious Mommy

    Tuesday, November 23, 2010

    Preterm Pregnancy and Dental Health

    As many of you may already know, your teeth can suffer during pregnancy.  To what extent and to all the reasons why, we don't know.  But what we do know is that they suffer.  And because of this, pregnant women are doing their bodies and their growing babies a favor by taking the best possible care during pregnancy.

    After speaking with my dentist yesterday after a routine cleaning and exam, I decided posting something about good oral hygiene during pregnancy as this would be a great reminder to many of you pregnant or planning to become pregnant to be as careful with their teeth during pregnancy as they are with the rest of their bodies.

    And here is why:
    • When you are pregnant, you tend to eat more (because you should, you are growing another being inside you).  As you eat, the pH levels in your mouth drop (increased salidity).  During this period, bad bacteria in your mouth are able to grow quicker...leading to increase risks of (or aggravation of preexisting) cavities, gingivitis, gum disease, etc.
    • increased hormone levels may cause increase levels of bad bacterial growth in your mouth
    • gum disease can not only be a risk to you but can also be a risk to your unborn child (click here for more information)
    So what are a few things we can do to prevent any of the above from happening?
    • visit your dentist for a dental cleaning and check up
    • rinse with 1 ts. baking soda and 8 ounces of water regularly to increase pH levels to a good state...this creates an inhospitable environment in your mouth for the bad bacteria
    • don't use regular mouthwash with alcohol as an ingredient (this also kills the good bacteria in your mouth)
    • floss and brush regularly
    • maintain a healthy diet and drink plenty of water
    I was happy to leave my dentist yesterday with a clean bill of dental health.  Thank you to the greatest dentist for better explaining to me the importance of good dental health during pregnancy!

    ~Curious Mommy

    Monday, November 22, 2010

    Keeping Strong Against the Fast and the Furious 2 Year Old


    Over the weekend, here in the mountainous west, we were dumped on with lots and lots of nature's cold wet stuff.  We new it was coming, and had been planning it at our house for some time.  Not only did we prepare the yard, the house with a properly working furnace and get organized to hunker down for the winter months, but we also picked up winter clothing appropriate for a 2 year old to run and play in for the winter.  I knew the moment Park played in the snow with his big snow boots and snow suit, he would be happy as can be.  However, since my son is NOT big on change, I've been dreading getting him to wear his snow gear for the first time.

    So in the weeks leading up to the snow, I talked to him about his clothes, what they were for and how they are like Mommy and Daddy's snow boots and jackets.  When the snow began to fall, Park was ready at the door with his regular shoes on begging and begging to go out and play.  So yesterday, we introduced him to his snow gear.

    Not surprisingly, it didn't go over very well...

    After 5 minutes of trying to get his boots on without Park removing them, squirming and screaming...we got them on and fastened.  Next, we tried in every attempt to calm him and explain to him why he was wearing them.  I have to say, I haven't heard my son cry that hard since a horrible visit to an Instacare clinic down the street where I was forced to hold him down while the doctor examined a very painful appendage.  I kept wondering if the boots could be hurting him.  But, there was no way.  They were plenty big and slipped on without a problem.  It was just our son, the fast and the furious child with more will power than most people I know.

    Then, I sat there dumbfounded.  What do I do now?  I hate to see him so upset.  When he cries, I want to cry.  BUT, he will never understand the necessity of snow boots unless he tries them out.  So, we let him have his screams.  We held him until he calmed down.  Then, distracted him with a snack and a car ride to the store.  Once we got out of the car, he was so distracted by the store itself, he kind of forgot about why he was so mad in the first place.  As we left the store, he jumped in a big snow pile and that is when, I assume, he realized what his big bulky boots were made for!


    As soon as we got home, he begged for us to put on his snow overalls, jacket, hat and mittens on and didn't hesitate one more second to run outside to play.  And so he played...for 2 hours.  And loved it.  And came inside, with his rosy cheeks and runny nose and begged for something to eat to fuel his little 2 year old body.  And then he slept...and I was a satisfied mom.

    I couldn't help but think to myself that I really learned something new about my son that day...despite the fact I thought I knew everything.  Although I have always known how strong willed he is and really likes things to be predictable...he is easily swayed by other positive distractions.  Once his strong mind, or shall I say yesterday's "furious" mind, was calmed and focused on something bigger and better than what was once so horrible at hand, he was better able to make sense of the situation.  And most of all, I learned that no matter how much my 2 year old protests something as simple as wearing new shoes, I am his mother and I shouldn't give in to what I know is right for him.  As horrible as it was for 5 minutes, it was well worth the fight.  He was so happy in the snow and by 7 am this morning, already grabbing his boots to go outdoors!

    Happy motherhood my friends,

    Mommy Bridget

    Saturday, November 20, 2010

    A Greener Thanksgiving

    With Thanksgiving Day fast approaching, I'm sure most of you are planning your turkey dinners and beginning to make all of the necessary preparations. While you are doing so, I thought it would be appropriate to add in some great ideas for greening your thanksgiving day. The Daily Green has some wonderful tips and ideas for those of you who are green conscious and like to support local farms.

    Click below to check out their helpful menus and ecofriendly ideas:

    A Greener Thanksgiving

    As for us, we are going as green as they come...we are not planning a feast for our family in our home this year. As much as I love to feed and entertain those close to me, I decided to save a turkey this year (and a little bit of money) and let someone else do the entertaining:) We have a few dinners and parties to attend, and I look forward more than anything to spend time with those I love.

    Many cheers to come for your upcoming holiday season!

    ~Mommy Bridget

    And the Rockin' Green Giveaway Winner is...

    Congratulations to Meg, whose winning entry was chosen as the winner of Rockin' Green's 45/90 bag of laundry soap!  The winner has been notified by email.

    Thank you to all for entering and don't forget to check out the other 2 giveaways going on here.

    Have a wonderful weekend,

    ~Mommy Bridget

    Peter Rabbit Organics Review and Giveaway-ends 12/3

    Peter Rabbit Organic's Review and Giveaway
    I was so thrilled about doing this review for Peter Rabbit Organics.  Every time my son and I make a trip to Starbucks, we can't leave the coffee shop without picking up one of Peter Rabbit Organic's organic fruit snacks.  I usually don't like to let my son have anything he wants when we go to stores but in this case, he can have as much of this wonderful treat as wishes!

    Peter Rabbit Organics is a small, privately owned company based out of London.  The company decided to establish their business and produce such products because they found it difficult to find healthy, organic products for their families to consume.  And how did they know their products would be a hit?  They had the best taste testers and reviewers possible...their own families!


    We reviewed (and when I say we I mean Park ate and I observed and wrote:) Peter Rabbit Organic's Fruit Snacks.  These fruit snacks are not your typical fruit snacks, but are made with pure, organic fruit.  They contain no additional sugar or preservatives, and they taste delectable!  


    Peter Rabbit Organic's fruit snacks can be eaten as soon as your child is eating solids.  Children of all ages can enjoy this snack and because they are made with pure fruit, one not need to worry about what they are feeding their little ones.  And to top it off, the food is contained in these super handy little pouches that are also BPA-free!


    Peter Rabbit Organics fruit snacks come in three yummy flavors, which include:
    • Strawberry and Banana
    • Apple and Grape
    • Mango, Banana and Orange
    And my son's favorite flavor?  The mango, banana and orange.  Personally, this is my favorite too!  Like mother like son...
     
    Buy it:
    You can purchase Peter Rabbit Organic's fruit snacks online or at any local Starbucks coffee shop.

    Win it:
    Peter Rabbit Organics is giving away 10 assorted fruit pouches to one lucky winner on The Curious Case of Mommyhood!  

    To enter:
    ***REMEMBER: POST A COMMENT FOR EACH ENTRY***
    ***Also, remember to leave your email address with your comments so you can be reached*** 
    Subscribe to my blog (located on the left side of my home page) and tell me if your family has tried one of Peter Rabbit Organic's organic fruit snacks or any of their other products.  This is MANDATORY to enter the giveaway.

    You also have the opportunity for additional entries (one each) if you do any of the following:
    • follow The Curious Case of Mommyhood on Google Follower
    • tell me something about Peter Rabbit Organics
    • like The Curious Case of Mommyhood on Facebook
    • like Peter Rabbit Organics on Facebook
    • repost this giveaway on your facebook page and post the link with your entry
    • follow The Curious Mommy on Twitter
    • follow Peter Rabbit Organics on Twitter
    Again, please be sure to leave your email address with each entry.
    You have until December 3rd at midnight to enter.
    Good luck to you all,

    Mommy Bridget 

    Peter Rabbit Organic's fruit snacks were provided to me by Peter Rabbit Organics for review.  (Please see my Disclosure under my "Reviews" page for more information.)


    Wednesday, November 17, 2010

    Check out the Leonid meteor shower tonight - Arizona News from USA Today

    For those of you who are interested in checking out hundreds of meteors early tomorrow morning...

    Check out the Leonid meteor shower tonight - Arizona News from USA Today

    Tuesday, November 16, 2010

    Rockin' Green Giveaway Ending this Friday...You Won't Want to Miss!

    There are only a few more days to enter our Rockin' Green laundry detergent giveaway.  Click here to enter this fantastic giveaway!

    Mommy Bridget

    Monday, November 15, 2010

    Abby's Lane's Planet Wise Wet Bag Review and $10 Gift Certificate Giveaway-ends 11/28

    Abby's Lane's Planet Wise Wet Bag Review and Giveaway
    I was so excited about reviewing one of Abby's Lane's products for our cloth diapering system.  When asked which product I would like to review, I knew a wet bag was the perfect item since we have yet to have one.  I chose Planet Wise's wet bag since the description fit everything we were looking for for our needs.  And much to our delight, Planet Wise's wet bag lived up to our every expectation!


    Abby's Lane is an online store that carries everything from clothing and baby carriers to cute gift packages for moms and children alike.  They even offer a gift registry for your one stop shopping for new mommies to be!  And with so many cloth diaper brands and complete systems to choose from, they have everything to fit your cloth diapering needs.


    The Planet Wise wet bag can be used for everything from your used cloth diapers to wet swim wear, gym wear and dirty shoes.  It is a practical must have item to include in your diaper bag, purse or gym bag when on the go.  I can't believe I've gone this long without one!  We love it and don't go anywhere without it.  Not only have we used it for our son's used cloth diapers but we have also used it after swimming.  And it's so easy to clean following each use...simply throw it into your wash with the rest of your items.  Then hang to dry.


    The Planet Wise wet bag is completely water proof and locks securely to keep the dirty and wet items in.  It's also made from PVC free materials so one not need to worry about washing it with other items.  And best of all, there are NO excuses now to not exclusively cloth diaper your little ones!  (Not to mention save the need for plastic garbage bags to contain dirty diapers while on the go.)  This reusable bag is sure to have many uses and will help save the head ache of needing "garbage" bags for the above needs.


    Buy it:
    You can purchase Planet Wise's wet bag or many other items online here.  Also, check out Abby's Lane's great sale items here.  And be sure to check out their fantastic deals and other fan news on Abby's Lane's Facebook page or on Twitter.


    Win it:
    Abby's Lane is giving away a $10 gift certificate to one lucky winner on The Curious Case of Mommyhood!



    To enter:
    ***REMEMBER: POST A COMMENT FOR EACH ENTRY***
    ***Also, remember to leave your email address with your comments so you can be reached*** 
    Subscribe to my blog (located on the left side of my home page) and tell me what you use for diapering on the go.  This is MANDATORY to enter the giveaway.

    You also have the opportunity for additional entries (one each) if you do any of the following:
    • follow The Curious Case of Mommyhood on Google Follower
    • tell me another product you would like to try from Abby's Lane
    • like The Curious Case of Mommyhood on Facebook
    • repost this giveaway on your facebook page and post the link with your entry
    • follow The Curious Mommy on Twitter
    • follow Abby's Lane on Twitter
    Again, please be sure to leave your email address with each entry.
    You have until November 28th at midnight to enter.
    Good luck to you all,

    Mommy Bridget