Let’s Pretend It’s Really Spring: Win a $50 Carter’s Gift Card for Your Little One’s Wardrobe!

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This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my Disclosure statement for more details.

I participated in this program on behalf of Carter’s and The Motherhood. All opinions are my own.

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Is there an easier brand to love than Carter’s when you have little kids? I’m thinking no. We’ve always been thrilled with the quality of their sleepers, onesies, dresses, bibs, and more! I mourn the day Libbie grows out of Carter’s sizes (although now they’re going up to size 12! Woot!).

So you know when Carter’s offered me free money to go shop at their store – plus a gift card to give to you – I was all over that offer!

Carter's gift card giveaway

Right now is a pretty fantastic time to shop at Carter’s. Here’s why!

  • Their 50% off Baby and Kids Sale is going on, so pretty much everything is marked down! Plus there were some great clearance items.
  • On top of that, you can use the 20% off a purchase of $40 or more coupon below!
  • For every $40 you spend, you get a $10 reward certificate {the clerks at my Carter’s told me this is a special promotion because it’s usually $50}. And you can redeem those in the next month. Unlike some other places, you don’t have to spend $20 or $50 to use your $10 off – it’s just $10 off. Woohoo!
  • There are some adorable new collections (that were 25% off in store). Check out the Spring into Pink and Little Mate collections in a store near you.
  • These deals are good through March 4.

Carter's Spring Coupon

{click on coupon photo to open in a new window, then print}

I was really loving the items from the Mighty Cute collection. I have a thing for whales, apparently.

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And here is what I found for my own kids to wear for Easter this year!

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Joshua and David will be wearing these sweet oxford shirts with cuffs in yellow and mint green. We’ll use khakis we already have (which are probably Carter’s anyway!). Libbie’s chambray dress will match their cuffs and is so stinking adorable and girly! I love that Carter’s has stuff for LITTLE GIRLS, not teenager stuff shrunk to size 6.

So now that you’ve listened to all my ramblings, want to win a $50 Carter’s gift card for yourself? OF COURSE YOU DO! I am going to go old-school and say just leave me a comment! Tell me what you would buy with your gift card and who it would be for. For an extra entry, you can follow me on Facebook or Google Plus – just leave me another comment that you did so. The winner is Jay Dee! Congratulations!

 

Small Touches

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This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my Disclosure statement for more details.

Valentine's Day - February 14th
source: Kid Gibson

Warning label: This is a sponsored post, but all opinions are my own.

We don’t plan big nights out for Valentine’s Day. We have a little family now, and honestly, we’ve never been big V-Day people. For several reasons, for years we didn’t really celebrate at all other than a bouquet of (grocery-store) flowers or a batch of cookies.

And now my kids love Valentine’s (AKA Balance Time AKA Valance Time) way more than we do. So this year I’ve just planned a nice dinner at home with special dessert and a family game night.

But still, I want to make things a little special for my husband, since he does love me and it is Valentine’s Day. I find it’s in the little touches here and there. You know what I mean?

Valentine's Day

Here I’m modeling my small touches look. Mostly I am going for a MORE THAN JUST A MOMMY theme! I’m not just a mommy – I am my husband’s wife, and that is important!

  • I’m wearing my hair down, which I rarely do because Joshua yanks it out of my head. Ditto for dangly earrings.
  • He hasn’t seen this shirt a million times. It’s a Peter Nygard top I bought from Gwynnie Bee‘s shop for under $15! I love the purple and green and knot detail.
  • My shoes are sparkly, not practical.
  • And I’m wearing make-up!

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Johnson & Johnson and the Motherhood sent me two new make-up products to try out: Neutrogena’s Healthy Volume Mascara and MoistureSmooth ColorStick (for lips). I really like the mascara, which has a nice wand. It seemed to curl my eyelashes and didn’t clump at all. The ColorStick was peach, which isn’t my favorite color for lips, but I liked how it smelled like peach and went on smoothly. I was expecting more of a rough crayon, like a lipliner, but it’s nice and soft. I would like to try it in a deeper color (I like reds!). Using this ColorStick is supposed to make your lips softer in three days – even when you’re not wearing it! – because of the fruit oils. So I may just wear the peach around the house and see how that works!

[You can get a printable coupon for Neutrogena and several other Johnson & Johnson HEALTHY ESSENTIALS products at HealthyEssentials.com.]

In marriage, it’s good to spice it up every now and then. Valentine’s Day is a good day for that! And with an out-of-the-ordinary look, I’m way more likely to spend the night flirting with my husband instead of feeling like a Professional Diaper Changer.

This post is part of the HEALTHY ESSENTIALS® 2014 program by Johnson & Johnson Consumer Companies, Inc. and The Motherhood, who sent me a box of products and compensated me for my time. Opinions, experiences and photos shared here are all my own, and I hope you enjoy them.

What IS Healthy, Anyway?

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Healthy Essentials logo

 

This post is part of the HEALTHY ESSENTIALS® 2014 program by Johnson & Johnson Consumer Companies, Inc. and The Motherhood, who sent me a box of products and compensated me for my time. Opinions, experiences and photos shared here are all my own, and I hope you enjoy them.

I kind of skirt around this issue here, but the word healthy is pretty bothersome to me sometimes. Recently I wrote an article for a magazine that will run in September about “healthy back-to-school lunches.”

And honestly, I didn’t know where to start. What IS healthy? It depends entirely on whom you ask! My pediatrician might say it’s unhealthy that I’m still giving my 5-year-old daughter whole milk and that I tend to avoid low-fat dairy. She might think it’s unhealthy that I usually rarely feed my babies cereal or give them vitamin supplements.

And yet my friend Michele, the president of our local Weston A. Price Foundation chapter, would probably think it’s unhealthy that I ever let my kids have sweets or genetically-modified corn things. (Not that she would ever say anything to me; she’s WAY too sweet for that. I’m just saying her definition of healthy doesn’t include these things.)

I had a difficult time with the article, finally deciding to go with the approach that “healthy” is real food, food that grows from the ground or comes from an animal. In my heart, that’s what I believe and what I want for our family. And I make strides toward it sometimes, and then take steps back at other times, too.

Something I think we can all agree on is that it’s healthy to take care of your body from the outside as well. You know, take a bath or shower, wash your hair (whether it’s with shampoo or vinegar, whatever!), brush your teeth, and so forth.

Johnson & Johnson is helping you do those things this January with their Healthy Essentials program. You can get $45 of coupons for their products by visiting HealthyEssentials.com – where you can also finds tips and tools and some neat apps.

And if you have time, come join me on Twitter for a party this Tuesday, January 14th, where J&J will be giving away some wonderful gift packages. Here’s the info!

Ring in the New Year with Healthy Essentials at the #Moms4JNJConsumer Twitter Party

We are excited to join Johnson & Johnson Family of Consumer Companies for a Twitter party to talk about HEALTHY ESSENTIALS® for the New Year, resolutions, family wellness and how to score great deals on health and hygiene products! Learn how HEALTHY ESSENTIALS® can help you reach health-related goals for 2014.

When: Tuesday, January 14, 1 p.m. ET

Hashtag: #Moms4JNJConsumer

Prizes: We will randomly award 15 prizes throughout the party, from all eligible correct responses to trivia questions. Each prize includes an assortment of Johnson & Johnson Family of Consumer Companies HEALTHY ESSENTIALS® products with an estimated retail value of $50.

Prize Eligibility: No purchase necessary. Entrants must be legal residents of the 50 United States + D.C. 18 years of age or older. Void where prohibited.

Hosts: @theMotherhood, @CooperMunroe, @EmilyMcKhann, @TheMotherhood25

Want to go to 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™? Visit HealthyEssentials.com and see if your wish could come true. Plus, get tips and coupons to save on your favorite products for the New Year.

All you have to do is share a picture or story of a moment of caring in your life and you could scream “GOAL!” from Brazil.

Visit www.healthyessentials.com for more information on this amazing opportunity!

As always, thank you for supporting these and other charities by not getting disgruntled at sponsored content here on Vanderbilt Wife.

Every Little Step

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This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my Disclosure statement for more details.

This post is sponsored by theMotherhood and Wal-Mart. All opinions are my own.

Adorable Baby

Even with Joshua being our third baby, there have been things we’ve had to purchase or borrow for him. (And yes, even as our second boy in just over two years!)

I stole our swing back from the church nursery, where I had donated it. (Whoops.) We borrowed a bouncy seat from a co-worker. I coerced my mom into giving me her baby bathtub.

In terms of purchasing, though, we also got new bottles and pacifiers, some new clothes, crib sheets, blankets, and toys. Baby things wear out! (Probably drool enzymes, right?) And then occasionally, I’ll buy Joshua something that is just HIS – like that pacifier clip.

We’re fortunate to live very close to a Wal-Mart, given all the baby stuff we’ve bought for him and our other two children! I’m often over there getting toddler snacks, Dora pajamas, a new rattle … and of course, wipes and diapers. Oh, diapers.

I’ve hardly used my cloth diapers with little J because I cannot figure out how to get them not to leak. Sigh.

Mr. V was at Wal-Mart yesterday, because someone’s mommy had flat run-out of size 4 diapers for one little 2-year-old WHO REALLY NEEDS TO LEARN TO USE THE POTTY. Ahem.

Right now Wal-Mart’s Every Little Step event is going on. It’s their baby bash that happens twice a year, in September and February. I got to chat with some of the people from Wal-Mart, Pampers, and Fisher-Price and they got me excited about the great deals!

ELS-BB-LOGO

One of their very hot buys is the Fisher Price Kingsport Just-the-Right-Height crib. Watch the video on this one so you can really see the full effect. The legs can be three different heights, so if you’re short (like me!) it doesn’t feel like you’re tossing the baby down into the crib. Woohoo! For $250, you can get the convertible crib AND a bonus Kolcraft mattress.

If you’re on a smaller budget for crib shopping, there are several other bundles of crib and mattress starting at $150, including the Graco Lauren ($179), which is the crib we have and love. (But I sure wouldn’t mind if it had those adjustable legs …)

Another hot buy is Pampers diapers. The huge boxes of Baby Dry diapers are rolled back to $30 and small packs of Swaddlers are marked down as well.

Want to see a chat room full of women with kids in diapers get really excited? Tell them that Pampers is about to take their Swaddlers up to size 5 instead of size 3. We were kind of ecstatic!

These deals are good in store until Friday, the 13th, and online until September 20. To help celebrate, the Motherhood is throwing a Twitter party that we’d like to invite you to.

What: Join us for a Twitter party to celebrate Walmart’s Every Little Step event, in stores and online through September 13 and online only through September 20, when you can take advantage of great savings on products from Pampers, Fisher-Price and others! We’ll also take this time to swap baby stories – from the frustrations of diaper leaks and fussy sleepers to the excitement of hearing baby’s first words and the other golden moments that bring us so much joy.

When: Thursday, September 12, at 1p ET / noon CT / 10a PT

Where: We’ll be on Twitter.com – follow the #EveryLittleStep hashtag to track the conversation. You can see the details and RSVP via this Twtvite: http://twtvite.com/everylittlestep

Hashtag: #EveryLittleStep

Prizes: Five prizes will be awarded throughout the party to participants who respond correctly to trivia questions. Each winner will receive a basket including the following products:

  • Tide Pods
  • Downy Beads
  • Mr. Clean Magic Erasers
  • Cover Girl nail polish, lip gloss & mascara
  • Herbal Essences Body Wash & shower pouf
  • Olay Fresh Effects product
  • Reusable Walmart shopping bag

Hosts: @theMotherhood, @theMotherhood25, @CooperMunroe, @EmilyMcKhann, @Walmart, @Pampers

Hope I’ll see you there!

 

Child Hunger Ends Here

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This post is sponsored by theMotherhood and ConAgra Foods.

On a typical morning, my kiddos wake up hungry. This is probably because they’ve refused to eat much for dinner. They wouldn’t want to accidentally consume something green or even orange.

So the pantry-raiding starts early, granola bars and apple sauce and “drink yogurts” and cheese sticks flying off the shelves faster than Mommy can say, “How about some grapes?”

Meanwhile, across the state in Memphis, my sister taught kindergarten this past year. She wasn’t in the inner city Memphis schools, but in a suburban, title 1 school.

“Miss S, I’m HUNGRY,” she says they often come in saying. Most qualify for free lunch and breakfast but parents don’t always get them there in time for the early meal. She says there are often kids who just can’t concentrate from dealing with hunger pains.

Ashley stocks granola bars in her classroom for these times, out of her own pocket. And I bet many teachers can say the same. And it’s not a once-in-awhile thing. It’s an everyday occurrence.

Child hunger is not abstract. It’s not just in Africa or even Appalachia. It’s in your neighborhood and your state.

In summer, there aren’t teachers with granola bars. As I told you before, a LARGE percentage of the kids who get free or reduced lunch at school aren’t accessing government programs during the summer.

So what do we do?

If you have the means to help:

  • Be “that” mom in your neighborhood. Hand out snacks to kids playing outside. Invite families over for dinner. Be THE place where kids want to hang out!
  • Volunteer at a food bank.
  • Watch this video about food insecurity – for every person who views it, ConAgrea Foods will donate a meal.

And if you need help?

  • Find a local food bank.
  • Check out some assistance programs.
  • Personally I would urge you to contact a local church or your own congregation if you are involved in one. The Bible instructs us specifically to feed the hungry. “What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, ‘Go in peace, be warmed and filled,’ without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that?” (James 2:14-16)

Once again … don’t forget to watch this very short video to donate one meal this summer!

This post is brought to you by ConAgra Foods and The Motherhood, and I’ve been compensated for my time. However, all opinions are my own.

Hunger Free Summer: Watch a Video, Donate a Meal

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This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my Disclosure statement for more details.

This post is part of the Hunger-Free Summer program sponsored by ConAgra Foods and in conjunction with theMotherhood

hungerfreesummer

In Chattanooga, private schools are the thing. I think I’ve astonished several people by telling them our daughter will go to public kindergarten when she starts in 2014. Sure, we aren’t zoned for the best school ever; but we’ve heard good things about it.

What really surprised me, though, was when I saw that 85% of the kids at this elementary school are on free or reduced lunch. Wow. With Mr. V working at one of these expensive private schools and seeing the mostly affluent kids who come through, it seems impossible that there are so many children living right around us at risk for hunger.

Did you know 1 in 5 kids in the United States falls in that “at risk for being hungry” category? I did a video with ConAgra at Blissdom in 2012, which you can see here, after they showed me the child huger statistics just in my neck of the woods. The reality that there are so many kids going hungry while my kids refuse to eat a speck of green pepper and throw away their dinners is embarrassing and revolting.

Here’s a little thing we can do to help this summer: watch this video featuring actor Chris O’Donnell. It’s only a little over a minute, and for every view ConAgra will donate one meal to help stop child hunger this summer. 

Summertime is the worst time for kids who are on the free or reduced school meal plan – because school is out. Only 2.3 million of the 21.5 million kids on the school-year program get assistance during the summer. It can be from lack of awareness, barriers to getting to the summer program, or that there simply isn’t a summer program in their area.

ConAgra Foods is providing grants ranging from $25,000 to $50,000 to food banks in 20 states to help them get through this summer. And make sure you do your part by watching the video and sharing it with your friends!

I’ll be sharing some more of why I’m passionate about stopping child hunger in a few weeks. How do you connect with it? How can you help?

This post is brought to you by ConAgra Foods and The Motherhood, and I’ve been compensated for my time. However, all opinions are my own.

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