Wonder Weekend


My oldest nephew turned six and we all got together for a super hero party in the park. 

Jax wore this:

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Wonder Woman! Lookout Linda Carter – Wonder Woman Jax is taking over.

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OMGoodness! Have you ever seen anything so stinkin’ cute in your entire life?

Doubtful!

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Jax’s favorite auntie, Sarah, made an appearance as Cat Woman.

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Grandma Gloria was only days out of the hospital from her second knee replacement in as many months. Wonder Woman Jax worked her super powers and made GG feel better!

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Wonder Woman Jax tending to a fallen party guest (she was actually trying to steal the little girl’s purse).

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The Guest of Honor. My adorable nephew, Gabriel, celebrating being six dressed as “Shredder.” Who the heck is that?

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Wonder Woman took a break from fighting crime to take her crown off, let her hair down and enjoy a bag of chips.

My Friend Amy and Her Miracle Elixir


My friend Amy Brown is truly one of the sweetest, most kind-hearted people I know. Always ready to listen to my woes with a compassionate ear, always willing to help and offer positive words of encouragement. Everyone needs a friend like Amy.

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Amy has a story to tell, an amazing one of endurance, strength and human spirit.

Years ago, Amy got really, really sick. So sick she needed a kidney transplant. The illness was inexplicable; Amy had lived a healthy lifestyle before it hit. She was active and ate right but suddenly there she was, clinging to life, in dire need of a new kidney.

Many people wait years for organs, often times they run out of time waiting – but that wasn’t the case for Amy. Her sister, saved her life with the gift of a kidney.

But after the transplant, Amy wasn’t getting better. The anti-rejection meds destroyed her immune system. She was constantly in and out of t he hospital. Then a friend made a suggestion that would change her life. She recommended XANGO juice.

XANGO are the makers and distributers of juice mangosteen, a super-fruit known for centuries to be healing and a natural immunity booster.

Amy took a shot and tried the juice regime. The improvement was slow but noticeable and within a few years she vastly improved her kidney function. She then incorporated other XANGO products into her regimen and today is feeling better than ever.

Recently I started using XANGO protein powders and I love them! It’s a clean product, free of the nasty chemicals, preservatives and heavy metals found in some other protein powders. I have been making tasty, healthy meal replacement smoothies and shakes that my entire family loves.

I can’t wait to dive deeper into the XANGO product line. In addition to the juice and protein powders they offer bath, beauty, nutritional support and loads of other beneficial products.

To learn more visit Amy’s site by clicking here.

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XOOM CUBES Game Review & Giveaway


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My husband and I are very competitive, especially with each other. We like to one up each other in just about everything, all in good fun – of course! Competition keeps us on our toes and brings about laughter (and sometimes a few arguments – ha!). Obviously, we love games and our favorite are word/spelling games. The hubs is usually the victor but when it comes to words, I can give him a run for his money. XOOM CUBES Word Race Games is perfect for us.

When I was asked to review XOOM CUBES, I knew immediately I wanted to host a game night, combining my love of entertaining with some friendly, competitive fun.

I invited my dear friend, Jasmine, and her family over to play. I put together a taco bar, allowed for some time to eat and chat and then the real fun began.

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This game is awesome! We had four adults and a teenage boy playing and the laughter was continuous throughout the night.

The concept of the game is easy to understand and there are a few different ways to play. Basically, each player chooses their own color of lettered dice, which they roll and try to quickly spell words within a chosen criteria (i.e. four letter words, word that begins with an “R”, etc.) with them. A flag is placed in the center of the players and the first person to spell a word grabs the flag for the game point.

We played a few rounds that way and then tried a “potluck” round where we all placed our dice in the center and gathered around trying to spell as many words as possible. The competition got a little psychical as we all jockeyed for position, trying to grab the most letters and spell the most words. The scene must have looked hilarious and our neighbors must have wondered what the commotion was with all the hoots, hollers and laughter. Good times.

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You can play the game with a minimum of two players but it’s most fun played with a group. Each game set comes with four different colors of dice, meaning four players per game set. There are two different color sets available (Set A & Set B). If you buy one of each, you will have eight different color sets of dice, allowing up to eight players. That would be maximum fun!

With the holidays coming up, this is a perfect gift for a family, a teenager or anyone who enjoys games. Or bring XOOM CUBES with you to a Christmas party, it’s entertainment and a hostess gift all in one.

I do have to say that although the package says the game is good for ages 6 +, we did try to play with a 6 year-old and an 8 year-old and the game was a little too advanced for them; their vocabulary range and spelling ability just isn’t there yet. They tired quickly of the adult antics and went about coloring and making forts while we carried on playing. If it was a group of only younger children playing than I think they would enjoy it.

XOOM CUBES Word Race Games are available online at Coppin’s Hallmark and Gift Collectibles or at XoomCubes.com. Visit XoomCubes.com for more information.

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*****XOOM CUBES GIVEAWAY*****

One lucky Yay Baby! reader will win two FREE sets of XOOM CUBES (set A & B)! Simply leave a comment below and then come back and click here to enter and for additional chances to win.

The winner will be determined through a random drawing at midnight (Pacific Time)  on December 6, 2013 and notified via email. Winner must have a valid shipping address within the 48 continental states of the USA. Yay Baby! blog not responsible for prizes not received. 

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I was given two sets of XOOM CUBES to facilitate my review and was not financially compensated to write this post. All opinions and photos within this post are entirely my own. 

Happy Mail


ImageMom Mail Exchange. Have you heard of it? Are you already participating? If you haven’t, and you’re not, then you definitely want to read on.

Remember when you were a kid and getting a piece of mail with your name on it was the most exciting thing…ever? And now as an adult checking the mail isn’t so fun because it’s usually only bills, bills, junk and bills?

Well, Mom Mail Exchange guarantees you at least one day of fun mail every month — Hooray!

MME pairs up mommies with other mommies to share their favorite items with each other. You get a smattering of goodies and a new friend every month. Then the next month you get assigned a new mommy to exchange with. The only rule is that you don’t spend more than $30 (including shipping) per month, so it’s fun and affordable too! Read more about MME here.

Cool, huh? Such a genius idea. I wish it was mine.

There is still time to get paired up with a mom for November. The deadline to sign up is October 28. You’ll get your partner by November 1 and then you take it from there!

October was my first month participating and it was so fun picking out fun items for my assigned mommy partner, Julie from The Blog Dalia. It was such a joy to get to “know” her via email and open up the package of goodies she thoughtfully picked for me. LOVED it all. I’m definitely keeping in touch with her even though our October exchange is over.

All mommies in the USA and Canada are welcomed to participate. I’m so looking forward to getting partnered up again in November! Hurry up and get your name in, I mean, come on, who doesn’t need a new friend and who wouldn’t want a monthly box of surprises?

Click here to email Ursula at MME and get registered for November. Or copy her email addy here: mommailexchange@gmail.com. And don’t forget to follow MME on Instagram for reminders and giveaways!

Happy mailing!

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My awesome Mom Mail from my new friend. Thanks Miss Julie!

My Child is Loud…So What?


ImageJax is my constant companion, my forever sidekick and like it or not, she goes everywhere I go. She is hit or miss at the grocery store, but does extremely well while dining out. My girlie likes to eat. But like any baby she has her moments, she will break down in frustration and she can get loud and distractions are the best way to calm her.

We started our weekend with a busy Friday. Jax and I met a friend for “coffee” at Barnes and Noble. I’d not seen this friend for over three years and the plan was to get our drinks and mosey over to the children’s reading corner to chat and catch up while Jax played among the books. I did worry about the setting but Jax did ok for awhile. Then she started her demanding grunts which almost always erupt into shrieks of impatience if not tended to fast enough. I would simply hand her a new book or give her a sip of my drink and for awhile that did the trick.

My friend and I had only an hour to catch up before we had to part for separate commitments. We got about 45 minutes in before Jax really had enough of books and started crying, loud, disruptive crying. We packed up our things and spent our last 15 minutes finishing up our chat while pushing a happy Jax in the stroller in the parking lot.

Our next stop was meeting another friend for lunch. I was confident this would go well because I knew Jax would be hungry and would be occupied with her food. We chose a loud, busy restaurant so Jax’s boisterous excitement and/or frustration would be lost in the mix. But things don’t always go as planned.

Jax is transitioning out of her morning nap routine and starting to take longer afternoon naps instead. She did, however fall asleep on the 35 minute drive to the restaurant, which I was thankful for. The place was crowded and loud and Jax seemed very excited to be there….she loves to people watch. She’s cute as a button so folks were oohing and ahhing over her and she basked in the attention. Really hamming it up.

My friend was about 10 minutes late but Jax was content with her crayons and my purse. I asked our server to hold off on taking our order until my friend arrived. So she neglected our table all together. We waited about 15 minutes after my friend was seated before she came back. Jax got antsy so I took her out of the high chair and sat her on my lap. Our food arrived 20 minutes later and Jax screamed loudly when I put her back in the high chair but a strawberry quickly made the world right again.

She ate quietly for a few minutes and then decided the chair was no place for her. I saw her impatience building so I started inhaling my lunch. When her wiggles became body contorting squirms I again removed her from the restrictive high chair and held her.

All the while, there was a middle-aged couple sitting one table over who made it a point to shoot daggers in my direction every time Jax made a sound, even her yelps of excited and laughter elicited looks of disgust in my direction. It became annoying and made me uncomfortable.

When Jax really got going and nothing could distract her I asked my friend if she could wrap things up at the table while I took Jax outside. Her cries had become incessant and increasingly louder. I handed my friend $20 to cover my tab and started packing up my things (Jax had dumped out the contents of my purse).

During the entire two minutes it took to collect my things that Mr. and Mrs. Crotchedy stared me down with looks of total disgust and anger while muttering their disdain to each other.

I was LIVID!

Not because my child was having a full-blown meltdown in my arms but because of the blatant rudeness of these people. I am sure they don’t have children or grandchildren of their own. Otherwise they would know that these things happen. Other folks in the restaurant looked at me with sympathy and when Jax was at her worse on my way out I did get a few other annoyed glances but these two people pretty much stared me down the entire time.

So, you know what I did?

I walked right over to their table with Jax still wailing loudly and I said this:

“I’m sorry my baby is crying, but your constant dirty looks do not help the situation.”

To which that miserly man said: “Ok, lady, it’s our fault your kid is screaming.”

I honestly wanted to spit on his food then on his face! But I refrained.

No, it was not their fault my child was crying and I was not telling them that it was. However what good did their nasty looks serve? They did not make me want to get up and leave. But they certainly did anger and agitate me and Jax can feel that.

As terrible as this sounds, I kinda hope that Jax did ruin their lunch. They saw me leaving when Jax got out of hand and they still behaved rudely towards me and my child. A look can say 1,000 words and I got plenty from these two trolls.

I’ve encountered crying kids at the grocery store and I either ignore them and carry on with my business or I give the kid a smile, or maybe make a funny face at them or even blow a raspberry at them. I’ve seen these simple distractions actually stop the child from crying and carrying on. Distractions can be such a blessing to a flustered, frustrated mama.

Jax is a toddler and a spunky one at that. She demands attention and loves to be heard. These traits will only grow with her. I will do my best to turn those attributes into positive qualities, but I know we will have many, many more meltdowns before she can understand that such behavior is unacceptable.

I have no plans to hole up at home until that time comes, but I will remove Jax from any situation should her behavior become uncontrollable, which is exactly what I did that day.

I know some folks would disagree with what I am saying. They will tell me to just stay home if my child can’t behave. And to them I say why don’t you stay home if you can’t. Rude, nastiness from adults who know better is far worse than fussing from a baby who doesn’t.