A Modern Day Fairy Tale

Friday, August 1, 2014

#SummerSweeping with Tiny Love {Tummy Time Sea Adventure Review & Giveaway}

Welcome to the 2nd Annual Summer Sweeping to Win Giveaway Hop, hosted by the Blogging Mamas Network.
Summer is coming to a close, but it's still HOT, HOT, HOT outside. Each blogger in this Event has a giveaway worth at least $25 to help you stay cool and keep Summer Sweeping with this fun Giveaway Hop - so be sure to hop around to them all below!

**Product received for review.

A few weeks ago, I shared with you one of the great new summer products from Tiny Love- the Woodland Take Along Arch. You can read all about this fun toy (and enter to win) here. But today, I'm excited to share another wonderful new product- the Tummy Time Sea Adventure playmat. Let's take a look:

The colorful, friendly faces of the Tummy Time Sea Adventure will entertain baby and encourage tummy play.  The soft mat features a tummy time pillow in the shape of a smiling crab and will support baby as she explores the many activities, sounds and textures.  Also included is a stand-alone mirror for endless self admiration! (ARP$29.99-34.99)

Once again, Tiny Love has not failed to impress me with their fun, vibrant designs. Under the Sea is such a classic theme for babies, never going out of trend...but Tiny Love has made it fresh, fun and unique all over again. A simple blanket on the floor may be okay for tummy time for some babies...but many others prefer a little something more to keep them entertained. This playmat has thought of it all and has everything baby needs, designed perfectly to fit the theme. I personally adore the tummy time pillow...it's crabby design fits the theme perfectly and is just absolutely, positively ADORABLE! Not to mention encourages head lifting- a milestone essential in learning to roll over, sit up or crawl.The teethers are perfect for baby's little hands and can be removed for stand alone play as well. (As can all the toys included).

But when it comes to tummy time toys, one of my kids' favorites have always been mirrors. Babies just LOVE to look at themselves, right? The adorable fish design of this one makes it even more fun for little ones...even long after they've outgrown 'tummy time'. The best part? When baby inevitably makes a mess of the mat- as babies are so great at doing- the whole thing is washable...truly, a MUST!

Overall, I am once again impressed with the amazing products Tiny Love has to offer for babies of all ages. If you'd like to see more, check out the links below:

Visit the Website.
Like on Facebook.
Follow on Twitter.

And as part of the Summer Sweeping Giveaway Hop, Tiny Love is offering one lucky reader the chance to win a Tummy Time Sea Adventure of their very own. Enter using the Rafflecopter form below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 Winner will be contacted via e-mail after giveaway ends, and will have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen. One entry per household, winning entry will be verified. Odds of winning depend on valid entries received. A Modern Day Fairy Tale is not responsible for prize delivery. So Easy Being Green, Viva Veltoro, the Blogging Mamas Network, and the Summer Sweeping participating bloggers are not responsible for sponsors who do not fulfill prize obligations.Disclosure: I received the product mentioned above in exchange for my honest review. All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Summer Style with Cloth Diapers

A huge thanks to Buttons Diapers for providing the adorable diapers that can be seen in this post. All thoughts are my own.

We all know the benefits of using cloth diapers. They save money. They're better for baby. They're better for the planet. These are all great, responsible and logical reasons to choose cloth. But there is another not so practical reason that many of us love cloth...they're absolutely, positively adorable! And when it comes to being adorable, Buttons Diapers are at the top of my list!

Let's face it...disposable diapers aren't really that cute. They're boring with their plain white style...sure some have favorite characters, but still are nothing in comparison to the many fun designs and colors available with cloth. Once they've been on for a bit- soiled or not- they seem to start to look dingy...it's like the dirt just goes straight to them. Truly, they just aren't as FUN as cloth!

During the summer, using cloth is even better! Why? A cute top and diaper is all you need to have a stylish baby in the summer heat! Why wear pants with diapers this cute!?

I love solid colored diapers with a cute top for a simple summer look...but want to take it up a notch? Bring on the prints! Seriously, how perfect is the new Acres diaper for summer (and fall) trips to the farm!? I adore it!!

This is only one of the 4 fabulous prints just introduced by Buttons. Take a look at these other cute diapers (and a few style ideas I put together with clothing from Carters). How would YOU style them?

The great thing about Buttons (aside from being stinkin' adorable!)? They are an all in two system...which means you simply change the insert, NOT the whole diaper...the cuteness can last throughout the day! This certainly is another great thing to love about cloth...Pants? No, thank you!!

Want to add some cute diapers to your child's summer wardrobe. Be sure to connect with Buttons at the links below:

Visit the Website.
Like on Facebook.
Follow on Twitter.

Do you enjoy coordinating diapers and creating fun summer styles for your child? What fun ways would you style the new Buttons prints? Which is your favorite?

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

For the Little Men: A Green Scene Mom Giveaway

Little girls are super easy to shop for aren't they? With my daughter I feel I'm constantly telling myself she has too much stuff and doesn't need anymore. Cute GIRL stuff is EVERYWHERE! Boy stuff? In my experience, it was a little harder to find! So, if you have a little boy who needs a little spoiling, then this giveaway is for YOU! 

Green Scene MomThese adorable products are designed especially for little boys to encourage imaginative play, inspire healthy eating and simple mealtimes, and cover the basic essentials. Check out Green Scene Mom's favorite products for little rambunctious boys to use and enjoy as they explore the world around them. Moms will also love these companies for encouraging eco-friendly lifestyles through their innovative product designs.
Green Scene Mom - Alex Toys GiveawayAlex Toys' Busy Fire Truck is a new twist to a classic wood toy! Baby will love playing with 8 fun colorful activities on every side of the Busy Fire Truck! Actives include rolling wheels, a curvy bead maze, a mirror, turning picture tiles, a spinning gear, a movable ladder and a discovery wheel. Includes a pop-up feature too. For ages 10+ mos. For more information, visit alextoys.com.
Green Scene Mom - Pacific Baby GiveawayPacific Baby thermal bottles keep liquids hot or cold for up to ten hours. These high quality bottles are versatile to use from birth to 5 years old and make feeding and drinking simple during outings and while traveling.

The wide neck offers greater visibility and the inner scale simplifies measuring out formula. The bottle nipples come in three speeds and are naturally shaped. Just add handles and a spout to transform this bottle into a sippy cup for older kids. For more information, visit pacificbabyworld.com.
Green Scene Mom - pediped Giveawaypediped's adorable shoes are perfect for going on summer adventures! These stylish shoes fit comfortably and ensure healthy foot development. They are available in more than 140 designs for boys and girls.

Exceptional quality, unsurpassed comfort and distinctive styling have made pediped the fastest growing children's footwear brand in the United States. pediped footwear is sold in over 2,500 stores in the United States and 40 countries worldwide. pediped has also received many awards for their innovative footwear designs. For more information, visit pediped.com.
Green Scene Mom - BreathableBaby GiveawayBreathableBaby is a child product safety company dedicated to breathable innovations that address parents' concern for baby's safety inside the crib.

BreathableBaby products include breathable mesh crib liners which are designed to address the risks of suffocation and entanglement, breathable wearable blankets and blankets with moisture wicking mesh fabrics to keep your baby comfortable by reducing overheating, and breathable toys that are safer for baby to snuggle with. For more information, visit breathablebaby.com.
Green Scene Mom - Yummi Pouch GiveawayYummi Pouch makes eco-friendly snack solutions that encourage healthy snacks for active kids. Their reusable food pouches are freezer safe, dishwasher safe, BPA-free, Phthalate-free, and can be filled with healthy blended snacks and easily taken on-the-go, no spoon required.

Yummi Pouch also recently introduced cloth snack and sandwich bags, each lined with a water resistant interior and decorated with colorful prints. They're perfect for crackers, chips, and sandwiches and also make great little storage bags for hair accessories and cosmetics. For more information, visit yummipouch.com.
Green Scene Mom - Baby Bump Bundle GiveawayBaby Bump Bundle creates care packages for moms-to-be by trimester, newborn babies, and nursing new moms. Baby Bump Bundle also offers high quality products for moms and babies individually, so you can build your own bundle or just buy an item that catches your eye! For more information, visit babybumpbundle.com.
Green Scene Mom - oogaa Giveawayoogaa designs and manufactures non-toxic feeding products for baby and young children. Their award-winning divided plate is stackable, soft, durable and easy to clean. It's also dishwasher, microwave, freezer and oven safe. oogaa's tugboat spoon makes mealtime fun! Toot-toot... open wide, here comes the tugboat! For more information, visit oogaa.com.
Green Scene Mom - Buttons Diapers GiveawayButtons Cloth Diapers are quality, affordable, and adorable cloth diapers that are an easy to use two-in-one system. Buttons' one-size diaper covers can snap to fit babies from 9-35 lbs, and are made of 2 layers of soft wipeable PUL with double gussets around the legs. Their snap-in diaper inserts are soft and absorbant, and come in two sizes. For more information, visit buttonsdiapers.com.

These wonderful companies have allowed us to give away an amazing gift set! One lucky mom will win these great Little Man Summer Essentials for their little guy!

Prize Gift Set - Retail Value $260

BreathableBaby buried treasure sheet, mesh blanket & toy elephant - $45.99
pediped pair of boys shoes - $35
Alex Toys Busy Fire Truck - $43.95
Pacific Baby bottle set - $50
Baby Bundle 3 item gift set - $30
Yummi Pouch Spunky snack bags & mustache dishwasher safe stickers - $15.99
oogaa silicone divided plate & silicone tugboat spoon - $16.99
Buttons Diapers diaper cover, 2 daytime inserts & 1 nighttime doubler - $24.50
Little Man Giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

First Day of First Grade (and First Day of Mainstream!)

Yesterday was my little man's first day of the first grade! (Yes, back to school already! All of our local schools are on a modified school year- longer breaks throughout the year and a shorter summer.)

As some of you may recall, this particular first day was a big one for him for a few reasons. First of all, he started at a new school! Being in a developmental kindergarten class last year meant he had to go where that class was offered, even though it wasn't his 'home' school. So, now that he is out of that class, it was time to change. Scary for a kid who doesn't handle transition well, but we started preparing him early and he could not be more thrilled with the change!

But in even bigger news, this is his very first year in a mainstream classroom! Up until this point, he has been in a solely special education classroom (aside from a brief month immediately after our move when they placed him in an inclusion preschool class...which did NOT go well). When you have a child in special education, mainstreaming is a goal that you truly strive for, and the fact they they believe he is ready is an amazing sign of how much progress he has made over the last year. He will still be offered support throughout the day of course, but still in a classroom with typically developing children.

Still, despite the excitement, it's also just a little bit scary. It means that he will be expected to act appropriately socially- something he still struggles with- and will have less support throughout the day than he has become used to. It means that he will need to be able to focus and stay seated and quiet more than before. And it means he will be in a classroom with peers who may not understand his differences. You see, Shaun so desperately wants to make friends, but like many on the spectrum isn't quite sure how to do so. He is VERY loving and loves to give hugs and be right next to those he loves- not understanding personal boundaries or that not everyone likes being hugged constantly. He doesn't understand that not everyone is into the same things he is, or wants to talk about that same thing over and over and over again. (Or answer the same question 10 times!) In his mind, this is how conversation and friendships work. Unfortunately, we've already seen that many kids (and adults alike) are annoyed by this. Kids especially don't know why he talks the way he does. I'm not worried about him academically. He's the smartest kid I know, and I know he will thrive. My hope for him this year is to find a friend or two who he can relate to and form a real relationship...and that he continues to do better socially and behaviorally.

We are two days in and already he is thrilled to be there! He is enjoying his teacher and the new school and seems to like his classmates as well. I cannot wait to see how much he learns and grows this year! He is going to be AMAZING!

Monday, July 28, 2014

Wake Up & Get Back to School with NESTLE for Breakfast {#MyGoodLife #shop #CollectiveBias}

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

Ah, back to school time. New clothes, fun school supplies, new friends...back to school can be a super exciting time. But it's not ALL exciting. Back to school also means no more sleeping in! For the kids, or for mommy! And I'll be honest, this mommy is NOT a morning person. Quite frankly, I'm lucky to remember to make sure my child leaves the house fully dressed! Getting up, dressed AND preparing a big fancy breakfast for the two of us? Uh-uh...NOT happening! So, I headed over to my local Walmart to grab a few items for the perfect early morning, back to school pick me up!

Before I do anything else in the morning, I need to WAKE UP. Like I said, I am NOT a morning person.
So I need something to wake me up, and I need it quick! What better way to wake up then with a nice hot cup of coffee!?
But again, I'm lucky to remember pants...working the coffee machine in my state of sleep deprivation? That's just a bad cup of coffee waiting to happen. Besides, who has time for that? For the Nescafe Taster's Choice instant coffee is ideal. I get that great coffee taste I need, and I get it FAST! And of course I can't forget the Coffee-mate creamers to take it to the next level. Most mornings I'm a Classic Vanilla kinda girl...but if I'm looking for a little extra umph, the Caramel Macchiato makes the perfect morning treat!
Now that I've gotten myself woken up, it's time to feed the boy! Sure, I might be more awake now, but our time is still limited, so I still need something fast. A bowl of cereal? Eh, that gets old really fast. Instead, I want a warm breakfast that will fill him up and keep him focused during the day ahead. Stouffer's Morning Classics are perfect...they have the classic morning breakfast varieties everyone loves...but without taking the time! He seems to think they are pretty delicious as well.

Back to school is such a busy time, and unfortunately, means less time with our kiddos. So, why would we not make the most of our time that we DO have with them? With these great breakfast treats, we can share a wonderful meal each morning. It's ready in minutes, so there's no worry about wasting our moments over the stove, instead we can spend them around the table. I can take that time to remind him each and every morning how absolutely awesome he is and encourage him to go to school and be GREAT. When he is grown and old and he looks back on our early mornings before school, he's not going to remember how much time I spent on each meal. He's going to remember the conversations, the hugs, the MOMENTS we shared. Isn't that what motherhood is truly all about? Want to see some more ways to share flavorful moments with your loved one? Visit this site for fun ideas from more wonderful bloggers! How do you make time each morning to share special moments with your family? Do you enjoy a warm breakfast? Early morning snuggles before getting out of bed? How can Nestle and Stouffer's make your mornings even better?

Friday, July 25, 2014

Why Do YOU Cloth Diaper? (+ 5 Surprising Reasons to Fall in Love With Cloth)

Why do YOU cloth diaper?

Is it to save money? To keep harsh chemicals away from your baby? Reduce waste in the landfills? Or perhaps you just like the way cloth looks over disposable? Or even feel like that's what you're 'supposed' to do?

For me, it was a combination of factors that weighed into my decision to use cloth. I loved that it was better for baby and the environment...and yes, even that they were cute. But the number one deciding factor for us was the cost. When we decided to add onto our family, we knew that as a single income military family we would have to watch our budget carefully in order to make it work. Cloth diapering was one easy way that we knew we could save a ton of money. Sure the initial investment was steep, but at 11 months old we've paid just around $200 to diaper our girl...well worth the cost!

Regardless of why you started to cloth diaper, most of us find MANY more reasons to love it as we go. In fact, some of us might even become a little bit addicted! (It's hard not to become addicted when there are so many adorable options, right?) Want to know some surprising reasons I've found to love cloth more? Check out my post here at the Smarti Pants blog!!

Why did you choose to use cloth? Have there been any surprising reasons you've fallen even more in love? I'd love to hear all about it!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Clean Bums...For Everyone with Cottonelle (Plus a Coupon!) #LetsTalkBums

Many thanks to Cottonelle for sponsoring today's story, and keeping all the bums in my household clean!

Here at A Modern Day Fairy Tale, we talk about bums quite often, right? From diaper brands to diaper accessories to poop and more...we've talked about it all. But let's be honest, baby bottoms are not the ONLY bottoms that need wiping around here! That's right,  today we're talking bathroom routines for the REST of the household.

We all know a good toilet paper is a must, don't we? I'll be honest, I'm known to pinch pennies and buy the cheapest options available on just about anything...but when it comes to toilet paper, cost- while still important- is not priority one. Instead, I want to find the right paper that is gentle on the skin and tough on the...ahem, well the mess! Cottonelle Clean Care Toilet Paper is a great choice for my household. It's strong and effective and still soft too.

In my household the biggest mess-maker is certainly my 6 year old son. You see, as is fairly common with children on the spectrum, he still struggles with potty training. Accidents are an every day occurrence...and cleaning them up...well, it's not a job I look forward to! To be entirely honest, sometimes even the best toilet paper is just NOT enough. Sometimes I feel like I could easily go through half a role of toilet paper before finally giving up and sending him to have yet another bath. There HAD to be an easier way. Cottonelle once again has us covered with their Fresh Care Flushable Cleansing Wipes. I couldn't wait to give them a try.

I am happy to say that they've made potty time a much more pleasant experience around here. No longer am I scrubbing and scrubbing with no results. His bottom stays clean, and my sanity stays a little more intact.

But these wipes aren't just great for potty training, they are truly useful for EVERY member of the household who wants a better clean. I mean, we use wipes for baby bottoms because we know wet wipes get the job done better...why stop once we're out of diapers? Cottonelle Clean Care provides the perfect clean for normal messes, and Fresh Care covers the messes that need a little more umph! Together they are an unbeatable team!

Here are a few quick facts about both products:

Cottonelle Fresh Care Flushable Cleansing Cloths:

- Flushable
- Break up after flushing
- Sewer- and septic-safe
- Alcohol-free
- OneTouch dispensing tub
- Great for the entire family

Cottonelle Clean Care Toilet Paper

• Strong and effective for a confident clean
• Tuggable, huggable softness that goes a long way
• Two-ply
• Pairs well with Cottonelle Flushable Cleansing Cloths for the ultimate in clean

But don't just take my word for it... you can try them for yourselves! And because we all LOVE saving money, you can use this coupon for $1.50 off! What are you waiting for? Start shopping! Your bum will thank you!!