Getting The Sleep You Deserve and Need #sponsored

November 2014
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Easy

I have been compensated by Mattress Firm for my participation in this campaign as a part of the Mom It Forward Blogger Network. As always though all my crazy opinions and stories are my own.

We all know that we function better throughout the day if we have a good night sleep the night before, but getting a good nights sleep goes further than just not being cranky the next morning. Here are just a few of the benefits to getting a full night's sleep:

1. Sleep is restorative for the brain.

2. Too little sleep can lead to weight gain by altering levels of the hormones that regulate satiety and hunger, leading to overeating, overweight, and obesity.

3. Growth hormone is secreted during slow wave sleep.

4. Insufficient sleep is associated with a higher incidence of behavioral problems, especially attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

5. Memory consolidation occurs during slow wave sleep, meaning that the different pieces of what we've learned during the day come together coherently so that the knowledge can be accessed when needed.

6. Kids with more sleep see more improvements in school.

7. When kids sleep well, their parents' sleep improves, doing wonders for their ability to function during the day (and maintain their sanity in the evening and night).

As moms we know that we want our kids to sleep well and school aged kids should be getting between 10-12 hours of sleep, and I think we all know what happens the next day if they don't get that sleep. Wink I think though that as parents we sometimes forget that we need to give our kids the right tools to achieve those 10-12 hours. And one of the most important tools we can give them is a good mattress that fits their needs. "Replace Every 8" isn't just for grown-up mattresses, but kids mattresses need to be replaced every eight years as well. When getting a new mattress for you child you want to make sure you are getting something that fits your child and their needs.

Here are just a few things to consider:

Size: The mattress size you choose will mainly be about your personal preference. While a twin mattress is common for younger children, larger beds will allow for future growth and tend to be preferred by older children.
Firmness: The ideal mattress for a child will provide the proper support while cushioning developing bodies. Regardless of the bed type or size, children need firm support to ensure their spine and bones develop properly and stay in alignment.
Breathing Sensitivities: If your child has allergies or asthma, you may opt for a synthetic-filled mattress to resist dust mites and allergens. When shopping for a bed, look for mattresses that also have microbial or hypoallergenic fill and covers to help reduce these potential problems.

Taking these things into consideration will help you find just the right bed for your child. It's also really important to get a mattress from an expert, and someone that has your needs in mind and doesn't just want to get you out the door with a new bed, and that's why tons of families choose Mattress Firm. Mattress Firm has experts that are there to guide you through the process and make sure you get what is right for your family. Mattress Firm will support you through every phase your family goes through, Mattress Firm grows with you!

Recently we found our little boy sleeping on the floor even though he had his own bed. My husband and I couldn't figure out why he was doing it. I didn't like to have to lift him back up onto his bed every night, but I also didn't want to just leave him on the floor. After about a week of him sleeping on the floor I started to wonder if he was just unhappy with his bed. He was four and sleeping in a toddler bed, but the mattress was the same that was in his crib as a baby. It was definitely time for a new mattress for him and time for a "big kid" bed.

We went and he got to pick out his own mattress, which he was super excited about. Once we got it home I knew we had made a great decision just by looking at how happy he was with his new bed. If you are looking at getting your kids a new bed, but you are worried about the costs of it all remember that a bed is an investment that will last 8 years! Also a well rested child means a well rested mom. Laughing

He also loves his really soft Mattress protector, which works great and I don't have to waste a fitted sheet on his bed! I also find this incredibly necessary for younger kids, it's always good to protect against any night time accidents. You don't want to ruin the new mattress you just got!

I also want to talk a little about another sleep essential: good pillows!

What would sleep be without good pillows? Without a great pillows we would get even less sleep. Pillows can either provide you with the beauty sleep you really need or rob you of it with a restless sleep. As I get older unfortunately I find myself experiencing more aches and pains and when I notice those aches and pains the most is right after I wake up. That's a horrible way to wake up; I want to wake up feeling refreshed and ready for the day not like I have been sleeping in a torture device for the last 8 hours. I have two little ones that depend on me being at my best and instead I find myself afflicted with a headache for half the day. I knew I couldn't keep going like that and the final straw was when my little girl asked me one day, "mama why do you always have a headache? Do all mama's have headaches in the morning?" After that I realized I needed to do something and I needed to invest in my sleep. Proper sleep is the best asset I have to a happy and productive day. First step and the easiest is to get new pillows, and no I don't mean head to Walmart and just start trying all of them out, that will only lead to a lot of disappointment. No you will need a professional, you need a serious pillow from a sleep expert. You need someone that knows what they are doing when sleep is concerned, you need Mattress Firm.

One of the most amazing pillows I have ever used is from Mattress Firm and I now will never rest my head on anything else! They come with either a coconut scent or lavender (I personally prefer coconut). You can check them out here! And I will also be giving two pillows away!! Be sure to also see the experts at Mattress Firm for your next mattress and get the best sleep you can!

Disclaimer

The Healthy Natural Way To Get Your Child Through The Cold Season #Sponsored #MC #LittleRemedies

November 2014
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Easy

I participated in an Influencer Activation on behalf of Influence Central for Little Remedies. I received product samples to facilitate my review as well as a promotional item to thank me for my participation.

Most kids and babies are exposed to an alarming amount of chemicals on a daily basis, as an 80's child I know I was taking in all sorts of chemicals that were technically unsafe and harmful for me, but my mom did the best she could with the information she had. These days we have so much more information and it's right at our fingertips. We now know that the more natural the product or remedy the better and that goes even further when talking about our kids.

Moms are trying to do everything they can to ensure their children are happy and safe from the moment they enter this world. When you find out you are pregnant you start doing everything in your power to ensure your baby is healthy and safe. As soon as I found out I was pregnant I immediately stopped my bad soda drinking habit and started eating as healthy as I could. None of that should change once you child is born either, you realize you never want them consuming anything that isn't natural or healthy. What would be the point in keeping them safe and healthy while in the womb, just to have them inundated with harmful things once they are born? Everything your little one eats will either hinder or help them to grow big and strong, and you only want the best for your child.

Making sure your child gets the best goes further than just the food they eat. Anything they ingest should, ideally, be natural and good for their bodies. That is why I only use Little Remedies to get my kids on a path to feeling better when they are sick. Unfortunately coming to this solution wasn't easy.

Around the time my baby girl was turning one she got her first cold. It was New Year's and as I put her to bed I could tell something was up and she wasn't feeling well. I had hoped she would just fall asleep and hopefully feel better in the morning. Unfortunately that wasn't the case, as a new mother this was my first "all-nighter". There was no way she was going to fall asleep and she only seemed to get worse by the minute. She started to get a bad runny nose and I could tell she was feeling miserable.

As moms all we want to do is make it better as fast as possible, so I jump in my car and ran to the store looking for anything that would help her sleep and feel better. It seemed as if I was at the store in seconds, I got to the store quick bolted out of my car and ran right toward the pharmacy area, it was if I had a super power that made me incredibly fast. I thought for sure I would grab the best medicine there was and be out the door in a flash. Wow... I couldn't have been more wrong. There were so many options, but none of them seemed right for my little girl at her age. I suddenly felt like the store was spinning and I couldn't figure out what I was going to do. It felt like I had been standing there for an hour. I finally got on the phone with my husband who was trying to calm our daughter down and do what he could to distract her from her symptoms. I started telling him about every medication, we were doing calculations in our heads; I would say, "well if a four year old can have a one teaspoon, we just need to cut that down by three right?" or "maybe if we just give her a tiny drop it will help?"

Then I started reading off ingredients, have you done that before? It's like the list is never going to end! I exclaimed to my husband "what is this crap?!" I didn't want her ingesting all of those nasty ingredients. I got off the phone with my husband determined to find a better solution.

I went up and down every isle and there it was... Little Remedies, it had a heart on the box and said, 100% natural. I said a little prayer in my head "please let this be the one", and my prayer was answered! Only three safe ingredients, only the very best for my little girl! I rushed home to help my baby feel better and she slept just fine thanks to Little Remedies. To this day I still count on Little Remedies to safely get my kids better.

Unfortunately as the weather outside gets colder I know it is inevitable that I will have a sick child soon, and sure enough this week my little boy came down with a cold and it was Little Remedies to the rescue. And once again I am using Little Remedies 100% Honey Cough Syrup and also Little Remedies For Noses Saline Spray. Soon enough he'll be feeling better and back outside pretending to be a superhero, but for now he needs his mom and comfort. I am relived that the comfort is coming from a medication that is healthy for his body and not full of harmful ingredients or chemicals. 

Disclaimer

#Sponsored #MC Heroic Habits for Wherever Life Takes You

October 2014
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Easy

I participated in an Influencer Activation on behalf of Influence Central for LISTERINE. I received samples for this review and a promotional item to thank me for participating.

I wrote a little bit ago about heroic habits and how our family keeps up good habits, and more importantly how as parents we encourage our little "super heroes" to have good habits including making sure they keep their teeth healthy. Looking back on the years I know that I am in "constant watch mode" making sure our kids are brushing, flossing and doing everything else they can do to have healthy teeth, but that started to make me wonder if I am leading by example or am I just trying to stop them from making the same mistakes I did when I was younger, and my conclusion... I am not leading by example enough. I can do more and I can do better. I find myself getting after them to brush longer and then I find that when it comes time for me to brush my teeth I rush through it too fast and a lot of the time skip flossing all together. So my husband and I have decided we need to be better examples for our kiddos and have heroic habits of our own.

With that in mind we realized that we need to keep up those habits no matter where we are or what we are doing. This became a little bit of a challenge since we travel so often and even as I type this my husband and I are 2300 miles away from home on a 10 day vacation. Now it can be difficult to keep any and all good habits up while on vacation; one heroic habit that I have been trying to keep up on is eating healthy. On vacation I find myself gravitating towards fast and frugal meals which typically are not healthy. It's not easy eating healthy for 10 days and while being on the road every day! But it's part of the heroic habits I am trying to have and I know it sets a good example for my kids to see me eating fresh healthy food as often as possible. I thought this heroic habit would be pretty difficult when we were in NYC last week, but I actually found fruit and veggie stands all over Manhattan and also found fresh smoothie stands all over. Awesome right?!

Unfortunately once we left the big city and set out on the New England open road it became a little more difficult, but not impossible! I almost caved a few times as we drove past some of my favorite fast food restaurants, but I held strong. Sometimes when we try to get into new healthy habits we will want to cave when it gets hard and the same thing can happen when trying to keep up good dental hygiene. We justify it with "it's ok I will brush longer in the morning" or "I will floss tomorrow" but if we want our teeth to be the healthiest they can be and avoid major dental costs (and I'm pretty sure we all do) there is no justification for not brushing, flossing and doing anything else we need to do for a healthy smile. With that in mind my husband and I made a commitment to properly take care of our pearly whites while on vacation as well. Before we left we each packed a little "heroic dental habits" bag for while we were on vacation. This bag includes:

:: A toothbrush

:: LISTERINE Mouthwash

:: LISTERINE POCKETPAKS

:: LISTERINE ULTRACLEAN ACCESS Flosser

Everything you could need!

 

To snag these items for yourself you can go here!

All of these products will help us maintain our good habits and will also help us set a good example for our kids. Every day we Skype with our 4 and 6 year old and my 6 year old wanted me to watch her using her new Barbie LISTERINE and so I took that opportunity to show her that I was keeping my teeth nice and clean as well! Every day we now talk (as much as we can with a toothbrush in our mouths) and show each other that we are keeping up with our heroic habits. Also while on this trip I have realized how nice it is to have some of the items above in my purse.

I carry with me the LISTERINE ULTRACLEAN ACCESS Flosser and the LISTERINE POCKETPAKS. I find that the LISTERINE ULTRACLEAN ACCESS Flosser is a lifesaver after meals especially if you have food between your teeth in two seconds of using it you can get rid of any extra food between your teeth and do it seamlessly without looking like you are flossing. I also have been using the LISTERINE POCKETPAKS for after meals, especially those with garlic or other strong flavors and also I have realized that after being on the road for a few hours your mouth can feel a little gross and you need something refreshing and your fellow car passengers will appreciate it as well. Wink

What I have come to realize most of all is that no matter where you are or what you are doing you can keep up those heroic habits! And if you don't have any heroic habits it's not too late to be healthy and happy! 

You can learn more about LISTERINE and heroic habits by visiting their website.

Also be sure to subscribe to the LISTERINE YouTube channel to learn about new products and promotions and to watch the LISTERINE heroic heroes video series!

Disclaimer

Creating Oral Health Care Superheroes #MC


Easy

I participated in an Influencer Activation on behalf of Influence Central for LISTERINE. I received samples for this review and a promotional item to thank me for participating.

Our kids are pretty obsessed superheroes so we try to use that theme when encouraging them on good habits. We want to make sure our kids are eating healthy so their superhero bodies are growing strong and we want them to have superhero attitudes which for us means being super kind and friendly to others and trying to create happy times with happy attitudes. Like most families we want our kids to have "heroic habits". So when it comes to oral hygiene we use that same principle and let our kids know that part of being a superhero is also having awesome healthy and strong teeth. This is point really hits close to me because on my side of the family we have a long history of bad dental genetics and we are prone to cavities and other issues, so I knew that I wanted it to be different with my kids and I wanted them to have super healthy teeth. With that in mind our kiddos know that a huge part of their "superhero responsibilities" includes keeping their teeth healthy and clean. Normally that just entails brushing their teeth for two minutes, but we recently started to use LISTERINE SMART RINSE and at first I was concerned if my kids would even use it or like it, and it turns out they LOVE it! They beg to be able to use it every night and love swooshing it around in their mouths. Be sure to grab some next time you are at the store, your kids will love it!

My husband and I have also "upped" our superhero tooth cleaning skills by flossing more often. This is something I have always had an issue doing, I don't know why, but I have just always hated flossing. I do understand how important it is though... it is really embarrassing for me to tell people this but when I was younger I lost two of my back teeth due to poor oral health care and bad genetics. And while I can't do anything about genetics I can do a lot more about my oral health care routine and I can make sure I am doing what I need to do so I don't lose any more teeth. This includes flossing which I personally love using the flosser, I feel it makes it a little easier to floss and ease makes me actually do it and not put it off! And speaking of easy... you can also buy all of your favorite LISTERINE products from the comfort of your own home!

After flossing and brushing the last step of our "heroic oral health habits" is to use mouthwash! Now, as you can tell from the pics above my kids absolutely love this step and so do I! I love feeling like my mouth is completely clean and I don't have any lingering food pieces left in my mouth. You can also use LISTERINE HEALTHY WHITE to help get those pearly whites you want!

So do you think your family is  ready to be oral health care superheros? What do you use or do with your kids to enforce good oral hygiene? Let us know!

You can learn more about LISTERINE and heroic habits by visiting their website.

Also be sure to subscribe to the LISTERINE YouTube channel to learn about new products and promotions and to watch the LISTERINE heroic heroes video series!

Disclaimer

*A Must Read* How Hard It Can Be To Climb Out Of Depression

August 2014

Easy

The suicide death of beloved comedian and actor Robin Williams shocked many of his fans. But those who knew him were aware of his ongoing struggle with depression.

According to his publicist, Williams, 63, was completing a 12-step program for drug abuse and had been battling severe depression.

Read Full Post...

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