Easy Trip Planning with Gogobot: Washington DC

This year has raced by and I am already planning my next travel adventures. In 2013, our little family has weddings to get to, trips we won to claim, family to visit and so much more. I can spend endless amounts of hours trying to find the rights places to eat and visit when on vacation. I use to only worry about accommodation and let the rest fall into place when I travelled on my own. But with the kids, I think it pays to be prepared. That’s why I enjoyed getting ideas for one of the first trips I will take next year with the help of Gogobot.

In 2013 I will run my first half marathon since the birth of Little Miss. In my short running career, I have 2 half marathons under my belt – one road race and one offroad, both of them I ran in New Zealand. I’ve been steadily clocking up the miles in the past couple of months and have been looking at what races I’d like to do next year. Their are a few New York races that are a given, but I’ve always wanted to run an all-female race. Something about pounding through the streets with only women would be empowering. So, I was so excited to see an announcement for the inaugural Nike Women’s Half Marathon in Washington in April 2013! An all women’s race in a destination I’ve always wanted to visit.

Webkinz Review: Digital Playtime and Cuddles

Have you heard of Webkinz? They are plush toys that you adopt into your house and they come alive online through WebKinz World. After going through the adoption process online including naming your new plush friend, your child then gets to build a home for their new friend and keeping it safe and healthy. Part of keeping your Webkinz happy is making sure that they are fed and enteratined, whether that be with a new TV, couch or by playing one of the many mini-games that are housed in the Webkinz World.

My son just turned 5 in September, so I was interested to see how appropriate playing Webkinz online would be for him. Webkinz are meant to be suitable for 5 years plus. He has been playing games on his my iPhone since he was at least 3 and in the last year he has also started playing on his Dad’s iPad.  We haven’t had a huge amount of success at find lots of computer games that he can play for longer than 5 or 10 minutes. Alot of the game play is a little too involved – requiring use of the arrow keys, space bar all at the same time is a bit much for him.

Specialized Child Care in New York City

I remember when I had my son I didn’t always trust my own judgement being a first time mama. I wasn’t sure if he was wearing enough layers and keeping warm, was he drinking enough and later in life eating enough. Should I let him cry it out, or rock him to sleep which the experts say is a no-no. Some of the best advice I had when trying to decide what was best for him was from my friends with children. They reminded me that it is completely normal to feel a little uncertain about many motherly decisions we have to make everyday – after all if their was a manual that covered it all, what fun would that be?

When my son was a little over 2, and had just switched up to the older children’s group at preschool, one of the teachers that started working with him approached me about what she felt was a delay in his speech. I felt pretty certain that his speech was not delayed, and other teachers that had worked with him in the past felt he was progressing at a normal rate.

When Baking Goes Bad! Tips for Saving Your Baking Disaster

Have you ever started mixing up ingredients to a recipe you’ve created a gazillion times only to find that you are missing eggs or some other key ingredient? Or maybe added the ingredients in the wrong order? Ok, maybe it’s just me…I’ve done it enough times that I’ve asked a few of my fellow bloggers for some ideas on how to turn a potential baking disaster into a baking success by replacing a missing ingredient with something else you might find in the house.

I decided to make Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies using this recipe. I was 98% sure that I had all the ingredients I needed. So without even thinking about it, I just started throwing ingredients in a bowl. Baking disaster number one, I should have read the instructions right through as I would’ve seen that I was actually meant to mix the dry ingredients in one bowl and the wet in another. Anyways, I plowed ahead until I realized I din’t have any eggs. Bugger! I remember reading before that bananas are a healthy alternative to eggs, or just for people who start baking cookies only to realize they don’t have eggs :).

I’m happy to say that even though I mixed all the ingredients in one bowl and used a banana instead of an egg and brown sugar instead of cinnamon, these were some of the most delish cookies I’ve had in awhile, as well as the current champs in the cookie dough department. Use one medium size banana per egg and yum, yum, you’re done!

Read on for some more tips for replacing a missing ingredient in the kitchen.

Welcoming Winter: Little Angels Bible Storybook Review and Giveaway

Welcome to the Welcoming Winter Giveaway Hop hosted by MamaNYC.net and running from Novemeber 6-14. After you read my review and enter my giveaway, make sure to check out all the other great giveaways listed below.

I reviewed Roma Downey’s Little Angel’s DVDs earlier this year and even had the chance to meet her in person. I love the premise of the Little Angels – 4 year old twins Alex and Zoe have eight little angels that look out for them. Each angel has a very distinct personality and teaches them family values and the importance of being kind and of sharing. Their are also basic learning skills such as ABCs, numbers and colors.

Roma has now come out with an illustrated Little Angels Bible Storybook with over 100 Bible stories for kids who love to discover new things about life, use their imagination, and have fun. Spirituality comes in many forms, and this is definitely one way to start to teach your child to be a more grateful and giving person.

My son enjoyed reading through the stories. Their are colorful  images on every page, I did feel like their might have been room for even more illustrations, maybe full page images? At 5 years old, my son still likes to see big full page illustrations – it’s not a complaint though, just a suggestion. The storybook has sections called “I learned that…” and “I can…” which are great talking points to follow up each story. The I can… section will actually give you a game or some other action to do that relates to the story, while the I learned that… that will help check that your child understood the reading. The stories also have a prayer that relate back to the story as well as a Bible verse.

Britax Bamtastic Baby Birthday Pinterest Giveaway #BritaxBAM

My Little Miss turned one yesterday so it is the perfect time to setup a giveaway in her honor. Nice, eh? It’s her birthday and you get the prizes. Read on for more information on how you can be in to win this Britax prize pack valued at $175 (Britax baby carrier, seat extender, insert and baby carrier bib).

It’s a simple Pinterest giveaway, so read on for the details and then get to pining!

1. Follow me on Pinterest, then make a board on Pinterest with the words #BritaxBAM in the title of the board.

2. Pin the graphic above with the instructions to your board, make sure to include #BritaxBAM in the description box.

3. Pin the first photo in this babywearing post to your board and make sure to include #BritaxBAM in the description box.

4. Pin at least one must-have baby item for baby’s first year to your #BritaxBAM board, it can be anything at all – accessories, clothes, toys, whatever from any website!

5. Add a link to your #BritaxBAM board to the Rafflecopter below.

6. Numbers 1-5 are mandatory entries, and you can get extra entries by following Mama goes BAM on Facebook and Twitter as well as a few other ways. Of course, the more ways you enter, the more chances you have of winning.

Here’s a link to my #BritaxBAM board as an example.

This giveaway is open to residents of the US Only 18+.

KiwiCanadian expat adventures with my husband and 2 kids from life in New Zealand to New York and back again. Adventures in inspired family living, travel, health & fitness.Read More »