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Baby and Childrens Products

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Cure Child Anxiety

Turnaround – Turning Fear Into Freedom

Cure Child Anxiety

Like many parents I really didn’t know how to help my child when I realized that their anxiety was stopping them from enjoying all that childhood has to offer.  Offering reassurances was no longer sufficient and I really wanted to help them.

I considered taking them to a psychologist but I was unsure how to find the right therapist.  Would the therapist be covered by insurance?  Would our child talk to the therapist?  How would we find the time to fit therapy into our already busy schedule?  How long would it take before our child would make any progress?

Being the internet sleuth that I am, I eventually stumbled across the Turnaround program.  I was so excited to find a program I could have the children use at home, when our schedule allowed.

 

What is Turnaround?

Turnaround: Turning Fear Into Freedom is a multi award-winning, evidence-based audio treatment program that teaches your child how to identify and stop anxious thoughts, calm distressing feelings, and courageously face their fears by using effective strategies (CBT) to overcome their anxiety. Your anxious child will listen to an adventure story designed to capture their attention while learning what anxiety is and how to overcome it. After each lesson, ten in all, your child will complete exercises in the Turnaround Journal that reinforce the material. Turnaround is unique because it is professional and child-centered.  

 

So far we have only listened to the first CD.  I learnt so much about my childs fears from that first session.  I’m looking forward to working on the other CDs with my children.

If you are interested in learning more about the Turnaround program you can visit http://MyAnxiousChild.com

 

The FTC requires that I inform you that I wasn’t paid for this review.  I will earn a commission from any sales generated from the Turnaround links on this blog.

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Dream Catcher Weighted Blanket

I got our son a weighted blanket a little over a year ago.

When I was researching the different options I knew I wanted a product that was both machine washable and could go in the dryer. I also wanted a blanket that my son would like touching his skin.

He was so happy when he got to custom pick the fabrics for his blanket.

I decided on a toddler size 36 * 52 blanket in custom in a dinosaur fabric from Dream Catcher Weighted Blanket. Our blanket is used every night to help our son fall asleep and stay asleep. He also uses it during the day if he’s having trouble calming down or watching TV.

We take his blanket with us whenever we travel including on plane flights.  It comes to the orthodontist office or in the car on long road trips.  It is well made with the weight evenly distributed and constructed of cotton.

Weighted blankets are great for people with Fibromyalgia, Sensory Processing Disorder, Autism, Restless Leg Syndrome, Anxiety, ADHD and many other conditions. To see a full list of conditions and benefits of weighted blankets visit the Dream Catcher website.

Our son has grown quite a bit in the past year and loves the weight of his blanket so we are looking at getting him a new blanket. We just need to decided if we keep our current blanket or use the Dream Catcher Blanket Exchange Program.

Do you or someone you love use a weighted blanket?

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Leap Frog Tag Reader

TAG Reading System

The Tag Reader is another great product from Leap Frog.  Leap Frog Tag Reader

As children touch the Tag Reader to the pages of specially printed storybooks, words talk, pictures sing and stories live out loud, engaging children’s senses to make reading a rich, fulfilling experience.

There are over 40 books and games based on favorite TV, movie and classic tales to choose from.  For the learn to read books the Tag will help your child sound out the letters in each word.  With the story books your child has the choice of having a page read to them and following along or touching each word as they read the page.

Each book includes comprehension questions that are disguised as games.  Even after your child has mastered reading each book they can continue to benefit from the comprehension games.

The new Tag Reader holds audio for up to 10 books at a time. Just connect the Tag Reader to your computer with the included USB cable, download the audio for your Tag books and drag-and-drop up to 10 of your child’s favorite stories onto your Tag Reader.

Each time you connect the Tag Reader to the computer your child’s play is uploaded to their online profile allowing you to see their progress in reading and comprehension skills.   This includes how long they read each book and the percentage of questions they got right.

We got our first Tag a few years ago and both children have their own along with a set of headphones.  Our oldest is in second grade and is almost ready to say goodbye to his Tag.  His sister is 5 and in Kindergarten and she just loves the new learn to read books.

Some people may be a bit concerned about the price of the Tag Reader and the books.  If you are willing to shop around you can get some great deals.

Here are just a few Tag Reader deals available now:

Starting November 21st – Tag Books are buy 1 get 1 free at Target.  Normally priced at $13.99, some books are reduced to $9.99
Toys R Us has had the Tag pens on sale for $29.99 which is a $10 savings off their $39.99 price.

To keep up on the latest deals be sure to sign up at http://Leap Frog.com for their emails.  They have frequent sales and a fantastic clearance section.  Quite often shipping is free with an order of $50 or more so it makes sense to stock up on sale or clearance items.
We got the Tag Learn to Read Super Book Pack which contains 19 books for just $53.99 along with FREE shipping.

If you have more than 1 child you will need a Tag pen for each child.  I would also recommend the headphones so that multiple children can use their Tags at the same time.

Feel free to share any coupon codes or deals for the Tag pen or books.

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krustbuster

Make Your Own Crust Free Sandwiches

Our school has hot lunch available and the daily option of a processed wholewheat crust free sandwich.

My seven year old would really like to have these sandwiches just so he can buy lunch.  As I would prefer his lunch to include less additives I went searching for a way to make crust free, sealed sandwiches at home.

I was pleasantly surprised to find an affordable and practical solution with the Krustbuster. 

I can now make my own crust free sandwiches using bread and jelly free of high fructose corn syrup.  The kids love it when I personalize each sandwich with smiles, stars and grape sandwich stamps.

So far I have only used the Krustbuster to make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and mini cheese burgers.

If you are concerned about sandwich making taking longer I can report that the Krustbuster has actually reduced the amount of time we spend making lunches.  I now make all sandwiches for the week on Sunday night and then freeze them.

In the future I would like to try making deli sandwiches and the recipe for French Toast on Krustbuster.com looks delicious.

My kids are really picky eaters so I am always looking for new lunch ideas.  Do you have any sandwich recipe suggestions?

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crayola crayon maker

How To Recycle Old Crayons

If you are a parent, care giver or teacher with young children you’ve probably wondered what to do with all those broken and small pieces of crayon you have lying around.

I stumbled across this great solution from Crayola today.

It’s the Crayola Crayon Maker! It turns crayon bits and pieces into new crayons in wild color combinations.  Just mix in crayon bits, melt them down, pour into the mold and let harden. Now you’re ready to color again with swirling crayon creations.

Crayola Crayon Maker:
  • Winner of Oppenheim Platinum Award for excellence in the area of child development and children’s media
  • Safety latch lid stays locked while melting for safe fun
  • Coated melting tray allows for easy clean-up after use
  • Requires 60-watt clear, colorless candelabra bulb
  • Crayola Crayon Maker includes one plug-in unit with locking hood
  • Mini crayon maker mold and crayon mold frame
  • 8 unlabeled crayons
  • 2 crayon couplers and instruction sheet for the Crayola Crayon Maker
I have just ordered this online from Walmart.  You can also check for local store availability.
At around $20 this is a great buy.  Just remember to get the 60-watt clear, colorless candelabra bulb if you are giving this as a gift as the bulb is NOT included.  We were able to pick up a 2 pack at our local CVS store.
Update Dec 30th 2010 – we made our first batch of crayons today and the kids had a blast.   The timer did get stuck on our machine to start with but once that was resolved things went smoothly.  Cleaning the trays afterwards is not as simple as explained in the instructions.  Hopefully the clean up doesn’t deter from using it.
 
I also stumbled across this video that demonstrates how the Crayola Crayon Maker works.
 


Crayola Crayon Maker Review

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American Plastics Homestyle Kitchen Play Set

American Plastics Homestyle Kitchen Play Set

A few years ago we were in search of a toy kitchen for our daughter. We don’t have a huge house, and the kids already had a lot of items for Christmas so we didn’t want to spend a lot of money. We were at Walmart and stumbled upon this kitchen. We decided to purchase it and figured if she liked it and used it we could always upgrade in a year or two.

Well we still have that kitchen and our 4 year old still uses it. If you are on a budget I would definately consider this kitchen.

Here is what Walmart has to say about the product:

Cook up some fun with the American Plastics Homestyle Kitchen Play Set. This play set features a realistic child-sized countertop with light-up burners and a “ticking” timer with bell. When pots and pans are placed on the burners, the play set activates bubbling and sizzling sounds. There are seven reinforced doors on the refrigerator, oven, microwave and several cupboards, adding a sense of organization and allowing for hours of play. Other features include a sink with a removable sprayer-faucet, storage shelves and a play microwave.

Kitchen measures 34″ x 37½”
Assembly Required
6 eating utensils (2 spoons, 2 knives, 2 forks)

1 cell phone
2 drinking glasses
2 plates
1 sieve
2 cooking utensils
3 casserole dishes
2 lids for casserole dishes
1 pot
1 lid for pot
1 measurement cup

Requires 2 “AA” batteries (not included)
 
There are only 2 negatives about this kitchen. One is the assembly time and the other is that our oven door rarely stays closed.

If you choose to purchase this kitchen allow yourself plenty of time to put it together. All the pieces are still attached to the plastic molds, so you have to break off or cut all the utensils, plates etc in addition to the kitchen itself. To prevent the oven door from falling open be sure not to trim too much around the door or oven opening.

* This is my personal opinion for a product that we bought at a retail outlet. I have not been paid or received any other incentives to write this review.

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Britax Frontier combination Harness-2-booster seat

Britax Frontier combination Harness-2-booster seat


Our son has been in a Britax Boulevard since he was around 1 year of age. He is on the smaller side so he could technically still be using the Boulevard, but at 6 and in First Grade we thought he might like to be in something a little older.

As soon as I mentioned Booster Seat my husband started panicking and asking hundreds of questions. So I began to research the options available. There are a few seats available that have a 5 point harness for children up to 80 lbs.

We decided on the Frontier because we know and trust Britax safety standards. We also liked a lot of the features including:

  • movable arm rests
  • retractable cup holders
  • 5 point harness to 80 lbs
  • seat positioning booster to over 100 lbs
  • latch and tether available (check with vehicle manufacturer for latch limits)
  • Side impact protection
  • 9 yr expiration date
  • The seat can be used for children over 100 lbs. as long as the vehicle shoulder belt guide places the belt in the proper position for the child, and the top of the child’s ears are below the top of the head restraint, and the child physically fits in the seat, and is not being used beyond its expiration date (9 years from date of manufacture).

    If you are looking for a car seat for a child who is at least 2 and 25 lbs then I would strongly recommend this seat. For a more detailed description of the Frontiers features and for testimonials visit Britax.

    I believe that all children should be in a 5-point harness car seat as long as possible. If you have a child who you think is ready for a booster seat and the car seat belt please read this Is My Child Ready for a Booster Seat first.

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    Peter Potty - the world's only flushable toddler urinal

    Peter Potty – the world’s only flushable toddler urinal

    If you have ever struggled with potty training a boy, then you need to take a look at this product.

    When I found the Peter Potty I had been battling with an almost 3 year old who was either OK with being wet or wanted to stand like daddy and just wasn’t tall enough.

    I needed him to be potty trained for preschool and I really wanted him to be succesful at staying dry for longer periods of time.

    What the manufacturer has to say about the product:

    • No more training your little man to sit first and stand later
    • Start him out right – teach him to stand from the beginning
    • Little girls need to sit, but with the new Peter Potty, little boys can stand like Daddy

     

    Benefits

    • Allows child to urinate by himself
    • Sized to fit and grow with your little boy
    • Can be wall mounted, free standing on supplied base or placed directly on floor

    Our son loved this product and I finally convinced him he no longer needed it after about 18 months. It really helped him feel like he was accomplishing something special by being able to stand up like daddy. Being able to flush the urinal was very novel as well.

    We used it with the base, and adjusted the height as our son got taller.

    With a RRP of $39.95 in the US I think it is a wonderful option that is practical and easy to clean for parents potty training little boys.

    If you are in Australia and looking for the Peter Potty you should stop by my friend Pam’s Baby Indulgences store.

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    The Milkooler

    The Milkooler

    I belong to a interactive online magazine for Aussie Mums, called Connect2Mums. This site is filled with hundreds of MumPreneurs and an unending number of products. In this post I would like to share a review by Rachael Stott.

    The Importance of Dad’s

    I recently spent an evening handing out information to new Mothers at the local hospital. It was only 12 months ago that I was in their position and so I had anticipated the empathy I felt for the slightly dazed, sleep deprived and sore mothers. What I hadn’t expected was the empathy I felt for the fathers.

    Being a mother my bias is obviously female and I would not, for a moment, say that the Dad’s have it worse than the Mum’s in early parenting. But what I noticed for the first time was that there is no support for the Dads.

    Dads’ miss out on all the good stuff. They aren’t as hormonally charged to nurture the baby, which is not to say they are less nurturing, but that they get far less biological help to do so. Fathers don’t experience the hormonal shifts that aid in returning to sleep after being woken mid sleep & they have fewer feel good hormones raging through their bloodstream that help mothers out in the early months.

    Dad’s even miss out on a lot of the ‘stuff’ that goes with a baby. There is really no male equivalent to a traditional Baby Shower, and even if there were what would you gift to a father-to-be? They really don’t have any use for body creams, re-usable breast pads or spa treatments. At best Dad’s get the practical things like a baby carrier- but nothing really cool. Until now that is.

    Last week I met Alan Jones and was introduced to his very kool product for new Dads’ – The Milkooler. Yes that’s right it’s a stubby holder for a baby’s bottle. Aside form being super cute there is more to this product than the novelty factor. It keeps Milk warmer, or juices cooler for longer, it is far easier for little hands to hold, it prevents the sun getting to the contents inside and when children are in the mimicking phase it is just like an adult stubby holder. They are inexpensive, fit most bottles and scrunch up easily in a nappy bag.

    My son is totally breastfed but still uses his on some of his sippy bottles and bottles of expressed breast milk. My partner loved this product and it went straight to the top of his ‘Great kids gear’ list. We have ordered a few more for expectant friends.

    http://www.milkooler.com/

    You can read more of Rachael Stott at http://www.rachaelstott.com/

    I also had the pleasure to meet Alan Jones and to see the Milkooler myself. As our children are no longer using bottles or sippy cups I gave one to my brother as he has 3 children under 3. The kids all wanted to try it, and dad thought it was cool too. The Milkooler is an Australian product that can be shipped to New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, UK and Ireland, Canada and the US.

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    Britax Boulevard Car Seat

    Britax Boulevard Car Seat

    When we had our first child 6 years ago, we got the Graco infant seat that attaches to the stroller. I didn’t give it a lot of thought as it had a high safety rating and came with the stroller I wanted.

    When we had our second child the same Graco infant seat was used for the new baby, but as we now had 2 vehicles and one of us was dropping children off and the other picking up, we really needed another car seat for the baby.

    Without any hesitation we purchased the Britax Boulevard. We were already using the seat for her older brother and we were very happy with the features for an older child. To our surprise this seat, that can accomodate a child up to 49 inches and 65 lbs, is able to provide a lot of support for a little girl who wore premmie clothing until she was 10 weeks old. How? There is a removable infant body pillow that helps with positioning infants and provides a truly custom fit.

    There are 2 main features that we love about this car seat.
    1. Side Impact Protection and
    2. No Re-thread Harness Adjustment allows you to adjust the harness height without having to re-thread the harness straps

    There is a knobb near the side of the head rest that you turn when you want to raise or lower the harness height. You never have to remove the seat to adjust the harness height.

    Our son is almost 6 and has still not outgrown his Boulevard. Our daughter is 4 and she is still in the same seat she used as a newborn. Both seats look like they could last for many more years. They are very easy to install with the latch and the fabric is easy to remove and wash. A seatbelt installation is possible; it just took a little longer for little me.

    Here’s a list of the many other features of these great car seats.
    – Rear facing until 35 lbs
    – Forward facing until 65 lbs or 49 inches tall.
    – Energy-Absorbing Base deforms in the event of a crash to absorb impact forces
    – Plush, Premium Cover Set with matching belly pad provides extra comfort
    – Front Harness Adjuster provides effortless front adjustment when loosening the harness system
    – Small Contoured Base ensures a tight installation in all types of vehicles
    – Convenient Harness Holders keep harness straps out of the way while placing child in the car seat
    – Built-in Lock-Off(s) secure the vehicle seat belt so that the child seat does not move more than one inch side-to-side or front-to-back at the belt path
    – HUGS™ (Harness Ultra Guard System) reduces forward head movement and cushions the chest in the event of impact
    – Infant Body Pillow for infant positioning and a custom fit
    – High Density Comfort Foam provides an extra layer of padding to gently cushion the child
    – Energy-Absorbing Foam Liner (EPS) absorbs and distributes crash forces
    – Rear and Forward Facing Recline for child comfort and positioning
    – Premium, Push-Button Lower LATCH Connectors for a quick, simple, and tight installation
    – Patented, Energy-Absorbing Versa-Tether with staged-release tether webbing, anchors the top of the child seat at two points to minimize forward movement in a crash
    – Five-Point Harness makes contact with the strongest parts of the body


    If you have a newborn, a baby who has outgrown their infant seat or a child who has outgrown their convertible car seat you really should take a look at this seat.

    If you are worried about the cost of this seat then I recommend you read the testimonials at the Britax site. We have purchased 4 of these seats over the years and they are worth every penny.

    I believe that all children should be in a 5-point harness car seat as long as possible. If you have a child who you think is ready for a booster seat and the car seat belt please read this Is My Child Ready for a Booster Seat

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