Review – Alphablock Board Book


  •   Title: Alphablock
  • Author: Christopher Franceschelli
  • ISBN: 978-1419709364
  • Age Range: 1 – 4 years old

Blurb: With thick pages cut into the shape of each letter, children and parents will enjoy this peek-through guessing game around the letterform itself. MarinaBook1Sprinkles, hot fudge, and cherries hint at I’s ice cream sundae, while aquarium accessories hint at F’s fish. As readers interact with the pages, they will familiarize themselves not only with the 26 letters and associated words, but also with each letter’s physicality—angles, holes, and curves, both front and back. With Peskimo’s animated, stylish visuals, this fresh ABC book encourages readers to manipulate the alphabet in a whole new way.

Note: illustrations have a retro feel, with imperfect variations in color and texture.


Marina received this book as a gift and we both love it. The book is colorful and sturdy. We both love the cutout alphabet and she gets excited when we reveal what the letter stands for. The illustrations are beautiful, I absolutely love the whimsical designs. Marina loves the textures and colors and it really holds her attention. She enjoys touching and turning the pages herself. She also enjoys just looking at the front and back cover just to see what she can find. As we read the book, it prompts her to try to repeat both the letter and the object after me. Reading Alphablock has become a part of our bedtime routine. I definitely recommend this book and will be adding other books by this author to Marina’s collection.

Sample Boxes from Walmart

Walmart has a couple of sample box programs available for $5.00 shipping. The programs require you to sign up and add credit card information but each quarter they will send a box full of Samples and coupons. Some contain full sized items. Both boxes are shipped quarterly.

The first is a Baby Sample Box. Right now you can either choose a 2nd Trimester Box or a 3rd Trimester Box as your first shipment.  Contents of the boxes will vary depending on what they have available when they ship.

The next sample program is The Beauty Box. The Beauty boxes contain items suitable for each season. Contents of the box will vary depending on what items are available.


Review – Gerber Graduates Tri-Suction Bowls

GerberBowlsSince Marina started getting a mouth full of teeth, I have been having a hard time getting her to eat baby food. She much prefers to feed herself and loves eating finger foods and table food. I purchased the Gerber Graduates Tri-Suction Bowls because I was looking for something that would stay put on the highchair tray and allow Marina to be able to practice feeding herself.

The package contains two bowls and one lid. I do wish that it came with a second lid but that in no way detracts from the product quality and I love the bright colors. The bowls are microwave and dishwasher safe. They are BPA free and feature 3 suction cups on the base of the bowl.

I absolutely love that these bowls have 3 suctions cups on the bottom. This allows the bowls to really stay attached to the tray and is much harder for Marina to pull the bowl off. Believe me she really tries! I have been able to grab the bowl in time before contents were spilled or the entire bowl landed on the floor when she has actually been able to pull it off. Most of the time she is unable to. I don’t think all of the suction cups were attached properly in the cases that she has pulled the bowls off of the tray. I would definitely recommend these. They are very affordable and are a pretty generous size so Marina won’t outgrow them too quickly.

To find out more about Gerber Graduates  you can visit Gerber or Nuk.


Such A Sweet Gift!

MeandCarolynI’d like to introduce you to Carolyn, my beautiful friend on the right. Carolyn is going through so many crazy things in her life and she doesn’t know it but she is such a beautiful, caring, strong person. We have had our ups and downs since we met in middle school and for a long time really drifted away from each other. When I found out I was pregnant with Marina, our relationship started changing again. She really supported me during my pregnancy and when she found out she was pregnant, I tried my best to support her during her pregnancy. It is amazing how much friendships strengthen as you grow up because seriously….we both did a lot of growing up!



Carolyn found out she was having identical twins very early in her pregnancy. I was very excited for her and worried as well. I know how hard it is with one baby but this girl is going to have her hands full with two. Carloyn’s due date was in March but one of the babies started showing sings of distress and on Jan 16th, the doctor performed a C-section and little Madilynn and Allison were born. They are so tiny, both weighing under 3lbs.  Carolyn can’t bring her precious babies home yet but each day they put on more weight and make more progress. Both girls are doing well enough that she is able to hold them and do “kangaroo time”.



Aren’t these little cuties precious?  I haven’t gotten the chance to meet them in person yet but I am looking forward to holding both of them and giving them lots of love.

Having people around you that support you during troubling times, life changes or even just because, is so important. We may not agree 100% on every aspect of life and sometimes manage to just drive each other up the wall but I am so thankful I have Carolyn in my life.


Review – Baby Buddy Oral Care Care Kit

BabyBuddyKitOne of the most important things you can do for your baby is take care of their gums and teeth from the moment they are born. I have used soft cloths and a finger brush massager for Marina since she was born. Now that she has quite a few more teeth and tends to bite down when I use the finger brush, I was looking for something that had a handle and would be easy for her to hold while I helped her clean her teeth. There are so many different brushes available but I has having a hard time finding that in between brush that would work for both of us.  After quite a bit of research, I came across a company called Baby Buddy that manufactures a toothbrush with the design I was looking for. They have a complete line of oral care specifically for ages 0 – 24 months. I was given the awesome opportunity to review Baby Buddy’s oral care kit with Marina.

I love that this kit contains everything you need to care for your baby’s gums. This would make a unique and much needed gift at any baby shower and I love that it comes in so many different colors. The kit came nicely gift packaged in an organza bag and contained:

  • Stage 1: Tooth Tissues 30ct
  • Stage 2: Silicone Finger Toothbrush
  • Stage 3: Wipe N Brush
  • Stage 4: Baby’s 1st Toothbrush
  • Stage 5: 360 Toothbrush Step 1 (Soft)

Tooth Tissues & Wipe and Brush:  I love that the tooth tissues are all natural bamboo and contain no paraben or fluoride. Marina really likes the bubble gum flavor. I like that you could use them with the wipe and brush system. The Wipe and Brush has a hole at the fingertip to allow the wipe to show through. It worked very well cleaning her gums and teeth as well as soothing her tender gums.


MarinaToothbrushBaby’s First Toothbrush: This brush is awesome.  It is made from 100% food grade silicone. I Love the shape and the curved bristled end. It fits right on Marina’s gums perfectly and cleans both top and bottom teeth and gums while she chews on it. It is very easy for her to hold and use. This is her favorite gum soother, teeth cleaning system by far. She loves it so much that I have purchased more to make sure I have replacements and extras to keep in her diaper bag when we are on the go. This is a must have for us!

360 Toothbrush Step 1: I really like that the bristles are very fine and completely circle the head of the brush. It makes cleaning her teeth so much easier for me because of the head shape and I really think this is helping  Marina prepare to use a brush on her own later. Baby Buddy manufactures these brushes for older children and adults as well and I am definitely going to purchase one to try myself.

To Find out more about Baby Buddy you can visit their website or Facebook Page. Visit to learn more about the Baby Buddy Oral Care program.


**Disclaimer: Baby Buddy provided a complete oral care kit in pink to me to facilitate my honest review**

Classes in full swing…Can it get any crazier??

Marina-ElephantMy Spring semester started and I’m really in the full swing of things. I’m taking four classes this semester. I had planned on taking a painting class but had to drop it because of the cost of the materials :/ I think I really would have enjoyed it but just couldn’t afford the $300+ to get everything the professor required for the class. That’s more than a couple of my books that I can actually use for more than 1 semester and unlike the textbooks, I can’t resell the used art supplies. Oh well… Maybe I’ll take a drawing class instead next semester.

Marina now has 3 top teeth. She’s walking around her playpen by holding on to the sides and she absolutely loves to try to feed herself. Sometimes she refuses to eat if I am the one holding the spoon. She wants to do it all on her own. I picked up these great Gerber Graduates Tri-Suction bowls and have let her have at it. She makes a mess but she sure has fun doing it. These bowls are awesome. I’ll have to write a review later for them.

Three of my very good friends just had their babies all within a week of each other. Two of them had handsome little boys and my other friend had to have a c-section at about 31 weeks. She had 2 beautiful little twin girls both under 3 lbs. They are doing very well but will not be able to come home from the hospital for a little while. It has been a busy month for babies!

Finally, I haven’t really posted about some of the issues I have been having after I gave birth to Marina. I have been so run down. I had thought it was because Marina wasn’t sleeping all night but now, even with her sleeping, I am always fatigued. I’ve had weird rashes just pop up, I haven’t lost the weight I gained during pregnancy, no matter what I do. I cut calories way down and I am doing low carbs. I go to the gym at least 4 days a week and still nothing. At least I haven’t gained anymore weight!  I’m always bloated, my liver was enlarged and the list just goes on.  I had a bunch of tests done for my stomach and intestines, etc to find out what was going on with my liver. All of the tests came up with nothing.  My mom suggested I ask the doctor to test my thyroid. I got a phone call back from my doctor’s office that I indeed have a thyroid problem and am now waiting to see another specialist. This time, hopefully, we can make some headway and I can get back to being “me”. Not just with dropping the weight I gained but in general feeling like myself.


NUK you have made my day!

MarinaChillingYes, Marina is a binky baby and I have been using the Nuby Prima pacifiers but she is still very picky about the shape of the nipple, so on nights she is being extremely picky I’ve had to revert back to her NUK newborn pacifiers. Especially now that she has been sick. They do have a much smaller handle than the pacifier style we had problems with. I have been searching like crazy for a pacifier without a handle that she will use instead but no luck :/

I decided to check out NUK’s website to see what they have coming out this year. They do have awesome sippy cups and toddler feeding products. To my surprise they will be releasing some pacifiers WITHOUT handles! The Small Talk, Cute As A Button, and Night Glow pacifiers. I am very impatiently waiting for them to release in stores! They still have the pacifiers with the huge handles available so I don’t think the incident with Marina had anything to do with the development of the new style of pacifiers but it is awesome to see that they will have pacifiers available without a handle!!