Urban Armor Gear: Military Drop-Tested Protection



Urban Armor Gear offers rugged protection for your phone as well as other devices so you can safely take them wherever you may roam.  All products meet or exceed military drop-test standards.  This is something UAG takes a lot of pride in and something I as a mother with my hands usually overflowing with kids to need!  In fact, they recently performed the ultimate drop test, from space!  I imagine that was a fun day at work. You can check out the footage in the video below.

UAG introduced several new cases this spring.  Here is a list of a few new cases and color options:

Galaxy S6 (composite) 
-Scout (black)
-Navigator (white)
-Outland (orange)
-Aero (blue)
-Ash (transparent grey- new color)
-Ice (clear)

Galaxy S6 Folio
-Rogue (red)
-Scout (black)

Galaxy S6 Edge 
-Ice (clear)
-Ash (transparent grey)

HTC One M9

I have had my iPhone 5s safely wrapped in the Urban Armor Gear Valkyrie case for over a month now and I must admit that I have put this case to the test.  I dropped my phone on some very hard surfaces recently and it has taken some hard hits. I can still recall the dread I felt as I bent down to pick up my phone each time…..as well as the shock and joy I experienced each time I discovered that my UAG Valkyrie case had protected my iPhone 5s from any damage.  As if the phone protection is not amazing enough, the case has yet to even get a scratch on it!

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The UAG Valkyrie case provides excellent protection without leaving my phone large and bulky.  In the past, I often had to live with a large case in order to get my phone the protection it needs from being handled my kids as well as myself.  However, this case is sturdy without being huge.  There is only one thing I would change about the Valkyrie case and that is to put an easy to grip texture on the sides of the case.  I find the sides to be a bit too smooth and slippery.  The Valkyrie fits my iPhone 5s perfectly.  The buttons work great and all areas I need access to are easily accessible.  UAG offers this case in a variety of color choices ranging from bright to more neutral.  I ended up going with the Valkyrie because I am guilty of often misplacing my phone and the fun pink color makes it easier for me to spot my phone.  Plus, the rugged but girly look is kind of perfect.

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Buy It!

The Valkyrie case as well as a great selection of other cases offering rugged protection can be purchased online at Urban Armor Gear.  Sign up for the Urban Armor Gear newsletter to get special deals emailed to you.  Plus, shipping is Free worldwide!

I received the Valkyrie case in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions are mine alone and based off of my experience with the product I reviewed.

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Fun Ways to Use Glow Sticks….Let Me Count the Ways!


This is a sponsored post. I received this product for free in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions are mine alone.

When you have a 100 super bright glow sticks at your disposal, the creative possibilities are endless.  I recently hosted a couple birthday parties for two of my kids.  My daughter requested a Tangled/Rapunzel party and my son requested a Super Mario party.  I soon discovered the selection of party supplies for both of these party themes was extremely limited.  This mama had to get her creative juices flowing.  This required, a lot of brainstorming, internet searching, and many cups of coffee.  When I stumbled across a 100 pack of Super Bright Glow Sticks, I immediately thought….party favors!  After all, kids love anything that glows in the dark.

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I soon discovered that Super Bright Glow Sticks are the ultimate party supply.  Not only do they make great decorations and party favors but they work great for party games/activities and do an excellent job of lighting up the beverage cooler!  We tend to keep our cooler on our deck when we host a party so it does not crowd up the kitchen yet makes beverages easily accessible for guests both inside and out.  I tossed a variety of colored glow sticks in our cooler….some straight, some made into circles.  When it became dark outside the glow sticks provided a fun lighting source so guests could easily see what was inside the cooler.

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Magic hair that glows!

The yellow glow sticks were a fun way to represent Rapunzel’s long glowing magical hair for my daughter’s Tangled party.

May 2015 145For my son’s Super Mario party, I used yellow glow sticks to create star power party favors.  I simply cut stars out of a yellow craft foam sheet.  Then drew black eyes on the stars with a black sharpie marker.  Once the stars were complete, I taped them to yellow glow sticks.  After everyone ate cake and was loaded with sugar, we went outside with the glow sticks and that is when the kids and our party guests got creative!   The 100 pack of Super Bright Glow Sticks also comes with connectors so you can create bracelets (or wristbands for the boys), necklaces, crowns, and much more.

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During my son’s party the kids loved dancing, jumping on the trampoline, and playing on the swing set while wearing their glow stick creations.  The glow sticks caused a lot of excitement and hours of fun.  We had to drag the kids inside because it was so late and getting quite cold outside.  This is just a small sample of what our guests were creating out of a stash of Super Bright Glow Sticks we set out for fun:

  • Bracelet
  • Necklace
  • Crown
  • Hula Hoop
  • Fish (which looked really cool when they made it “swim”)
  • Wand
  • Lasso
  • Shapes
  • Letters
  • Race track

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Buy It!

You can purchase a 100 pack of Super Bright Glow Sticks online at Amazon.

I received a 100 pack of Super Bright Glow Sticks for review purposes.  All opinions are mine alone and based off of my experience with the product I reviewed.

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Coosh Rapid MFI Certified Car Charger


This is a sponsored post. I received this product for free in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions are mine alone.

The perfect car charger should have the ability to charge multiple devices, quickly, and easy to use.  The Coosh Rapid MFI Certified Car Charger is all this and more!  The Coosh Rapid MFI Certified Car Charger has made charging our electronics in the car quick and easy.  This charger has a smart LED indicator so it is very easy to determine if the charger working and also easy to see in the car when in the car at night.  A lightning cable comes attached to the cord and the MicroUSB be is hidden inside the charging stick of the lightning cable so it won’t get in the way or broken when not in use.  The cable has a sleek look with the white and chrome design and LED lighting.

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My hubby and I recently went on a long road trip and had three different car charges with us yet within 20 minutes of the drive two of these charges quit working properly.  We have both Apple and Android phones and tablets so we are always looking to keep several devices charged when on a long road trip.  Needless to say, we were in need of a quality charger that could handle multiple devices.  The Coosh Rapic MFI Certified Car Charger has the capability to charge all of our devices and quickly.  Best of all, it can charge THREE of them at once!

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With the Coosh Rapid MFI Certified Car Charger, I am always ready to charge an Apple or Android device.  No extra cords needed unless I wish to charge several devices at once. This option is great.  I used to use a charger that required me to add a lighting cable and on more than one occasion I found myself in the car without the cable and no ability to charge my phone.  We also don’t have to prioritize which device gets to charge first when using the Coosh Rapid MFI Certified Car Charger because now they can all charge at the same time!  We no longer have a ton of charges and cords cluttering the front of my car either!

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The cord to the device is not super long but it does have stretch to it.  I actually like the shorter length because most times I don’t want my phone far from me and I don’t have a ton of cord tangled up or making a mess of my car.  When I do want extra length I can simply attach a longer cord to one of the other inputs.  The Coosh Rapid MFI Certified Car Charger is by far the best car charger I have ever used.  It charges my devices quickly, I get no error messages when using it, and it has a smart and sleek design.

Buy It!

The Coosh Rapid MFI Certified Car Charger can be purchased online at Amazon.  It comes with a Micro-USB and Lightning Charger!

I received the Coosh Rapid MFI Certified Car Charger for review purposes.  All opinions are mine alone and based off of my experience with the product I reviewed.

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Celebrate Get Caught Reading Month with I See Me!


May is Get Caught Reading month and what better way to get kids excited about reading than sharing a book that is made just for them!  I See Me! is my favorite source of personalized books.  Their book selection is amazing.  You can find books made just for your enchanting little princess and for your adventurous little pirate.  You will find several books for birthday girls and boys as well as for new big brothers and sisters!  The list goes on and on!  The only thing that tops their great book selection is the quality of their books.  The illustrations are always fun and adorable and the personalization is spectacular.  These books make children feel special and give new value to books and story time.  What’s not to love about that?!

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I See Me! even has an adorable My Little Book of Blessings that can be personalized for your precious little blessing.  My Little Book of Blessings is filled with ten special daily blessings and can be personalized for both boys and girls.  The book will feature the child’s name on the cover as well as throughout the story.  You are also able to include a personalized message for your sweet little blessing making this a keepsake book that will be cherished for years to come.  The illustrations are as sweet as the blessings.  The blessings are perfect for little ones and the personalization makes every blessing that much more special.

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Buy It!

I See Me! is celebrating Get Caught Reading month by offering a discount on I See Me! Personalized books throughout the month of May!  Use coupon code GETCAUGHT at checkout on the I See Me! website for 15% off any personalized book.  Offer expires May 31, 2015.

I received a personalized I See Me! book for review purposes.  All opinions are mine alone and based off of my experience with the products I reviewed.

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Hallmark Mother’s Day Cards Review & Giveaway

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Hallmark deserves that precious gold crown for many reasons and at the top of that list is their fabulous cards.  The quality and detail of Hallmark cards will forever give their recipients the royal treatment.  This year’s selection of Mother’s Day cards are simply beautiful.  In fact, these cards are truly works of art.

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Hallmark offers a wide variety of card styles ranging from sentimental, humorous, and fun.  The selection does not end there!  Hallmark offers an amazing selection of cards that are personalized for all the fabulous moms out there.  You will find beautiful cards specially made for a wife, moms, grandmothers, sisters, aunts, friends, daughters, and more!

Buy It!

Visit your local Hallmark store to shop their beautiful selection of Mother’s Day cards and show those special moms some love this Mother’s Day!  After all, “Awesome kids aren’t just born that way, you know.” This cute saying can be found on yet another awesome Hallmark card!  You can also shop online at Hallmark to find the perfect card and gift for all the moms in your life!

Win It!

One lucky reader at The Children’s Nook is going to win a Hallmark Mother’s Day 5-Card pack!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway will end at 12:01 a.m. (eastern time) on May 7, 2015.  This giveaway is open to U.S. residents only.  The winner will be selected by random.org and will have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen.  Hallmark will choose the cards and ship the prize directly to the winner.

I received Hallmark Mother’s Day Cards for review purposes.  All opinions are mine alone and based off of my experience with the items I reviewed.


Posted in Giveaways, Reviews | 14 Comments

John Deere Kernel Shucks Review & Giveaway




John Deere is a well loved brand by both adults and kids.  Therefore, John Deere toys are often well received by kids and their parents!  John Deere recently introduced a fun new toy that sports that much loved John Deere logo and keeps those little hands busy!  Kernel Shucks is a stackable farm character that encourages kids to get creative.  This fun toy comes with 17 unique pieces that children can mix and match to create a wide variety of fun Kernel Shucks characters.  The back of the box shows a few different Kernel Shucks creations to help give your little one’s ideas.  I kept the box for a few days after getting the toy because my kids liked to use it as a reference.  Of course, they quickly became familiar with all of the pieces and started creating their own unique Kernel Shucks in no time!

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The John Deere Kernel Shucks toy is intended for children 18 months and up.  All of my kids play with this toy but my 2 year old is definitely the biggest fan.  She loves the accessories that come with Kernel Shucks.  The headphones actually come off the hat so the hat can be worn on its own.  The headphones can then be worn alone or on top of the hat.  My daughter is an accessories queen so she tends to make her Kernel Shucks wear everything!  My boys love to give their Kernel Shucks a mustache The worm can actually attach to the arm of Kernel Shucks so they can hang out together.  My kids think it is hilarious that Kernel Shucks has a worm for a buddy.

Buy It!

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Kernel Shucks is now available at Walmart.com, JohnDeereGifts.com, and more with a suggested retail value of $13.99!  This toy did have a strong smell when it first came out of the box so I simply washed the pieces and the odor went away.  I tend wash most of my kids new toys anyway.  This is a fun toy for both boys and girls.

Win It!

One lucky reader at The Children’s Nook is going to win a John Deere Kernel Shucks toy!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway will end at 12:01 a.m. (eastern time) on May 20, 2015.  This giveaway is open to U.S. residents only.  The winner will be selected by random.org and will have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen.  The prize will be shipped to the winner via  the sponsor.

I received a Kernel Shucks to in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions are mine alone and based off of my experience with the product I reviewed.  Each household is only eligible to win 3 TOMY product prize packages, via blog reviews and giveaways, each calendar year. Only one entrant per household per giveaway. If you have won the same product prize package on another blog, you will not be eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.

Posted in Giveaways, Reviews | 32 Comments

Wild Kratts Live!

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We are big fans of the PBS KIDS television series, Wild Kratts.  Brothers, Martin and Chris, educate and entertain my children on a regular basis.  The combination of these real life brothers exploring nature and then using science (and a little TV magic) to gain first hand knowledge of different creatures is a huge hit with kids.  When I found out the Kratt brothers were doing a live tour, I knew I had to check it out.  I was intrigued by how Martin and Chris were going to use creature power on stage in person.  These two brothers do a great job of getting kids excited about nature in the Wild Kratts television series and this live performance was no different.

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Wild Kratts live is a fun and entertaining production that uses a combination of animation and real life interaction similar to the actual television series.  The Kratt brothers had the entire theater filled with kids on the edge of their seats yelling out in participation and laughing.  I took all three of my kids ages, 7, 4, and 2 to Wild Kratts Live and they all enjoyed it.  We even had a young teenage girl in front of us who had been to one of their shows several years ago and is still such a big fan today that she couldn’t resist seeing the show this year.  This show is filled with fun creatures, lots cool facts and loads of humor.  My 7-year-old son could figure out some of the tricks they used in order to perform the creature power tasks; however, it didn’t take away from his enjoyment of the show.  He was simply proud he could figure it out.  In fact, my 7-year-old was so in love with this event that he did not want to even leave his seat during intermission!

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The Kratts brothers do an amazing job of getting kids excited about science and nature.  They even did a shout out for girls who love science during the show.  The young girls in the audience loved that Kratts brothers respect female scientists like their fellow Wild Kratts friend, Aviva.  This was great to see and is a great message for young girls!  If you get the chance to check out the show, the Kratts brothers will also share some fun information with you about new Wild Kratts episodes they are currently filming and what new creature powers they will be exploring soon!

Buy Tickets!

Treat your kids and yourself to an entertaining experience you are sure to remember.  Live shows can get a little pricey but I was delighted to find that Wild Kratts Live is very reasonably priced.  Prices may vary based on location.

I received tickets to Wild Kratts Live in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions are mine alone and based off of my experience with the event.

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Purex 3 in 1 Laundry Sheets Tropical Escape

This is a sponsored post. I received Purex 3 in 1 Laundry Sheets in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are mine alone.

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Purex 3 in 1 Laundry Sheets truly make doing the laundry simple.  One sheet has detergent, fabric softener, and anti-static properties.  These convenient little sheets are easy to store and easy to use.  All you have to do is toss one of these laundry sheets into the washing machine with your clothing and set your machine to the cycle you desire.  The sheet will release the laundry soap to clean the clothing and then the fabric softener will make everything soft to the touch to help eliminate scratchy clothing.  When the load is done in the washer, simply toss your wet clothing and the used laundry sheet into the dryer.  In the dryer, the anti-static properties go to work to eliminate static cling.

The Purex 3 in 1 Laundry Sheets can be used with both top and front load washing machines.   I have a front load washing machine and the Purex 3 in 1 Laundry Sheets have been working great with my machine.  My clothing comes out of the dryer clean and static free.  I really enjoy the Tropical Escape scent.  It is refreshing yet not overpowering.  These laundry sheets are so easy to use that they would be perfect for teaching your kids how to do laundry.  You don’t have to worry about kids lifting a heavy detergent bottle and measuring out the correct amount of detergent or forgetting a dryer sheet.  Since these sheets eliminate a couple steps, it will make this chore much easier to learn!  In fact, I plan on teaching my oldest son to do laundry using these Purex 3 in 1 Laundry Sheets.

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These laundry sheets are also great for people on the go.  Perfect for college students and travelers!  We often stay in a condo at a resort when traveling simply because they give our family room to move!  Plus, I love having a washer and dryer at my disposal.  This allows us to pack less and wash as we wear while on vacation.  Purex 3 in 1 Laundry Sheets would be perfect for these travel situations because I don’t have to worry about messy liquids or dryer sheets.

Buy It!


Purex 3 in 1 Laundry Sheets are available for purchase on Amazon and are eligible for free 2 day shipping for Prime members.

I received Purex 3 in 1 Laundry Sheets for review purposes.  All opinions are mine alone and based off of my experience with the product I reviewed.

Posted in Reviews | 1 Comment

Buglet: Natural Bug Repellent Wristbands for Kids Review & Giveaway (Two Winners!)

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Traditional bug repellent is loaded with chemicals and DEET.  As if that is not bad enough, the smell of the spray gets all over clothing, hair, and the bed sheets if a bath does not occur before bedtime.  I don’t like to use bug spray on my kids for all of these reasons.  however, if I don’t protect my little ones from mosquitoes, their tender skin will be covered in bites that tend to inflame and irritate them.  The Buglet is a brilliant bug repellent wristband for kids that uses zero chemicals.  This mom is not ashamed to admit she is a bit jealous of these cool wristbands.  Not only are they super fun to slap on the wrist or ankle but they are available in a variety of fun colors and designs.  The head of each Buglet has a pumice tile that will absorb the essential oils needed to repell those pesky mosquitoes. The oils in Buglet are citronella, eucalyptus, rosemary, cedarwood and geranium.

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The Buglet has a slap bracelet design so it is essentially one size fits all.  The Buglet even fits my almost 2 year old on the wrist and ankle.  Sometimes I slap the Buglet onto the handle bar of our stroller when we go for a walk on the trail or to the park.  I am really impressed with the quality of the Buglet. The look and feel of the bands are great.  My kids love to wear them.  My daughter never wants to take hers off!  I think I finally convinced her it is her outside bracelet.  The band is easy to put on and take off and adding the essential oils to the Buglet is quick and easy.

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This girl loves her bunny Buglet.  Here she is playing peek-a-boo with her bunny.  I giggle every time I look at this picture.

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The Buglet works great strapped to the ankle.  This is great if your little one is wearing shorts and you want to protect their legs from getting bit up.

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My little explorers wearing their Buglets.

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I love knowing my kids have bug repellent protecting them during these little adventures yet they are not being exposed to chemicals and the only thing that will need to be cleaned off their clothing is dirt!

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My kids have the yellow owl, orange monkey, and pink bunny Buglet designs.  Each band is vibrant in color and my kids proudly wear them like badges.  The Buglet is comfortable to wear and does not get in the way of any of their outdoor activities.  The Buglet has quickly become a part of our routine to go outside and play.  Shoes….check, sunscreen…. check, Buglet….check.  Time to get outside and have fun!

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Even Superman needs to keep the bugs away!

Buy It!

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Kiss those bugs goodbye and get your little one a Buglet!  At this time if you visit the Buglet website and sign up for their mailing list, you can get 20% off your order!  Plus, with every Buglet you buy, the company will donate $1 that will be used to deliver a life-saving test and malaria treatment to a child in Africa.

Win It!

TWO lucky readers at The Children’s Nook are going to win a Buglet!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway will end at 12:01 a.m. (Est. time) on May 13, 2015.  This giveaway is open to residents in both the U.S and Canada.  The winner will be selected by random.org and will have 48 hours to respond or another winner will be chosen.  The prize will be shipped via the sponsor.

I received samples of the Buglet for review purposes.  All opinions are mine alone and based off of my experience with the product I reviewed.

Posted in Giveaways, Reviews | 17 Comments

Nuby Oral Care Set

I am proud to be a Nûby Parent Blogger!  I received this new designer series cup from Nuby for review purposes.  All opinions are mine alone and based off of my experience with the product I reviewed.


Nuby has a lot of great products to introduce your little one to oral care.  The Nuby Oral Care Set promotes interest in oral hygiene at an early age.  In fact, this oral care set can be used on newborn infants.  The gum massager and cleaner easily fits over your finger and allows you to rub the soft silicone bristles over your baby’s gums.  This is the perfect oral care tool for infants because it allows for the best control when you are massaging the gums.  Once your little one starts teething, the stage 2 massager has a longer handle like a toothbrush but has soft silicone to help massage those tender gums and new teeth. The Stage 3 brush massages gums and teeth but also helps clean them in the process.  The Stage 4 brush has soft nylon bristles and looks like an actual toothbrush.  Your little one most likely has quite a few teeth at this point!

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The Nuby Oral Care Set is a great way to make oral care part of your little one’s daily routine and by doing so will help protect his or her primary teeth.  My daughter loves this set.  She is almost two and she still loves to use the Stage 2 and 3 massagers on her teeth and gums.  Of course, she also uses the Stage 4 brush because she has a mouth full of teeth!

Buy It!

The Nuby Oral Care Set is BPA Free and may be purchased at a Burlington Baby Depot and Babies R Us.



Posted in Reviews | 2 Comments