Enter the Sam’s Club Moms & Dads Club “Make Time for Play Time” Sweepstakes


Family Collage

Are you a Sam’s Club member? If not, you certainly should consider it if you have a Sam’s Club near you.

We don’t have a Sam’s Club local to where I live, but my father and stepmother have one where they live. We’ve gone shopping with them there in the past. We really enjoy it and have found some great deals. We especially love their birthday cakes. They are so good!

If you are a member, are you aware of Sam’s Club Mom’s & Dad’s Club? It’s an exclusive online destination where parents can learn more, save more and win more!

Sam’s Club has always prided themselves on helping families save time and money when shopping.

Save on National Brands

  • Sam’s Club gives you the best prices on the items you need from the brands you know

Save with the Exclusive Members’ Mark Brand

  • With over 400 Members’ Mark products – the brand exclusive to Sam’s Club – you save even more and still enjoy national brand quality!

Save through Sam’s Club Services

  • Whether you need a new pair of glasses or are in the market for a new car, Sam’s Club offers a wide range of services to help members get the most for their money.

Save Time with Club Pickup

  • Need to shop but want to skip the hassle?  Learn all about Club Pickup! Order online and your items will be brought to you at the Club Pickup kiosk inside select locations or at one of Sam’s Club’s select Curbside or Drive-Thru locations.

Save Time with Easy Reorder

  • Easy Reorder tools at Sam’s Club allow you to select from a list of the items you usually order, so you don’t have to order from scratch each time you shop.  Many items are available for free shipping or subscriptions.

To be honest, I wasn’t aware of all that Sam’s Club has to offer members. I like that you can order items online and pick up at your nearest store. That is a huge time saver. I could shop online when it’s convenient for me and pick up my order without having to shop the store and wait on line. As a busy parent I appreciate these types of services.


Now, on top of everything Sam’s Club has to offer, they now have a special club just for us moms and dads.

As a Mom’s & Dad’s Club member you’ll have access to exclusive content, special offers and rewards that will make being a parent a little easier.

Membership is FREE with your Sam’s Club membership.

As a Mom’s & Dad’s Club Member you will…

Get Exclusive Offers

Get Tips & Ideas

  • Mom’s and Dad’s Club provides product tips and suggestions based on your membership profile as the parent of an infant, toddler, preschooler or elementary aged child.  As a member you’ll also get great ideas to turn every day products into family fun! (Check out refreshing #lifehacks)

Get the Chance To Win

  • Mom’s and Dad’s Club members have special access to prizes, sweepstakes and giveaways

Make Time for Play Time Sweepstakes

Currently the Mom’s and Dad’s Club is hosting a fun giveaway – Make Time for Play Time” Sweepstakes.

Winners of the “Make Time for Play Time” Sweepstakes have the opportunity to win a “Fun With Mom” or “Fun With Dad” bundle from IncrediBundles.com. Each bundle comes with a premium diaper bag and a $100 gift card to IncrediBundles.com. The “Fun With Mom” diaper bag looks more like a chic, trendy bag. It doesn’t look like your typical diaper bag. As for “Fun With Dad,” the diaper bag is more like a backpack, which most men would prefer to use instead of a regular diaper bag.

If you are not familiar with IncrediBundles.com, it’s an online shop where you can purchase items for babies, toddlers and children in bundles. Each bundle is based on a theme such as bath bundles, sleep bundles, book bundles, and learn and grow bundles. You can even create our own bundle.


IncrediBundles make perfect gifts for a baby shower, new parents and even a child’s birthday.

I wrote a review for IncrediBundles.com last year. You can read my review here – Extraordinary Baby Gifts from IncrediBundles.com. PLEASE NOTE – the giveaway on that post is over.

I love that you can purchase pre-made bundles (or create your own) for an amazing gift – or even for yourself. No more having to go from store to store to purchase little gifts here and there. Everything you could ever want is available at IncrediBundles from diapers to toys and from books to bath time fun.

You can shop by theme or by price. They have plenty of gift ideas for under $50. You can also buy individual products (you are not obligated to buy a bundle).

You can even gift someone a YEAR of products such as diapers, books or toys.

All IncrediBundles come in an adorable re-usable box.


I still have our box. They are really well made storage boxes.

If you should enter the “Make Time for Play Time” Sweepstakes, here are some suggestions of things you could buy with the $100 IncrediBundles gift card.

Infants Under 1

  • Bright stim toys that clip to strollers and carseats and feature a variety of textures for exploring little hands
  • Teethers and rattles made from natural materials and colored with food-grade dyes
  • Loads of books for baby, especially sturdy board books with touch-and-feel panels, bright illustrations and simple stories.

1 & 2 Year Olds

  • Stock up on toys that allow for open-ended play like balls and blocks
  • Toddler-friendly musical instruments like bells, shakers and simple drums
  • Lots and lots of books, especially those with repetition and rhyme, basic stories and friendly illustrations


  • Games that allow children to learn as they play
  • Craft kits that exercise a child’s fine motor skills and creativity
  • Toys that encourage hours of happy pretend-play
  • Award-winning books with endearing characters and meaningful stories that children will want to hear again and again.

If you would like to learn more about IncrediBundles visit IncrediBundles.com. You can also check them out on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest (the links are found at the bottom right of their website).

If you would like to learn more about the “Make Time for Play Time” Sweepstakes, or to enter, visit the Sweepstakes page on the Sam’s Club website.



*I have partnered with IncrediBundles to bring you this information. Although compensated the opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way. 

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You’re Pregnant With Your First Child: Now What?



Being a first-time mother can be exhilarating and scary. There is so much to learn and you will have a lot to do to care for yourself and your baby throughout the pregnancy. As soon as you see a positive result on an at-home pregnancy test, you should be planning to give your OB/GYN a visit.

Choose an OB/GYN

If you have a good relationship with your OB/GYN and are familiar with the hospital where they deliver, you may opt to continue your pregnancy with this physician. This will be beneficial because your gynecologist will already have your medical history. If you decide that the gynecologist which you are currently seeing will not be a part of your pregnancy, then talk to friends and family in your area who have recently given birth, and ask them for any suggestions on finding a new OB/GYN.

Schedule your first prenatal visit       

During your first prenatal visit, you will take a pregnancy test to ensure that you are in fact pregnant. You will also get started on antenatal paperwork that will be used to track your pregnancy and keep up with upcoming visits. Your physician will collect medical history and any family history of a disease or genetic abnormalities in order to evaluate your baby’s risk of developing a birth defect. Other tests performed during your first prenatal visit will include:

  • Pap smear – to ensure the cells of the cervix are healthy
  • Urine test – to test for substances in the urine that may indicate gestational diabetes or preeclampsia
  • Blood work – to test for anemia, blood type, risk of STD infection, measles, mumps and rubella

Throughout your pregnancy, you will see your physician once a month. Once you reach week 32 of gestation, your appointments will increase in frequency to every 2 weeks until you reach week 37 of gestation, in which case you will visit your physician every week until delivery.


Review your options

During your first trimester, usually around week 11 to 13 of gestation, you will be presented with the option of prenatal screening tests. These tests, combined with your family history, will be used to analyze the risk that your baby will develop a chromosomal disorder, such as Down syndrome, or another birth defect. The results are compiled by using a blood test and an ultrasound.

If the screening test shows that your baby has a high risk of developing a birth defect, your physician will present you with options for prenatal diagnostic testing. These tests will give your physician a more clear answer to any abnormality that may exist.

Your physician may offer non-invasive prenatal testing, a blood test that can be performed as early as week 10 without the risks of prenatal invasive procedures. Other diagnostic tests include chorionic villus sampling (CVS) and amniocentesis which are usually performed during the second trimester. However, these tests are invasive and involve a procedure different to that of a blood draw.

Choosing the right physician and care team will help you feel secure and confident during your pregnancy. They will help you enjoy the process of becoming a mother while ensuring a safe and healthy pregnancy.









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What Happened to My Body? Tips for Treating Post-Partum Imperfections



The first few weeks after having a baby, you’re so overwhelmed with joy, excitement, anxiety, and sleep deprivation, that you’re not really paying attention to your body. It’s not until you start trying to get “back to normal” with your life that you realize…. Something’s different! Your stomach, if not riddled in stretch marks is extra flabby, your breasts droopy, and your legs have scattered spider veins.

What in the world happened? In a nutshell, the last nine months of carrying around your bundle of joy have done a number on your body. Don’t panic! There are some remedies that can improve post-partum imperfections so that you can feel like your old self again. Here are some tips:

Varicose Veins

Many expectant mothers develop dilated blood vessels that end up near the skin’s surface around the calves and upper thighs, which are called varicose veins. There are several reasons this happens including hormones, heredity, and the added weight that pregnancy can put on your legs. While some women report improvements after giving birth, others are not so lucky.

The Fix: Obviously, no woman likes the look of blue or dark-colored veins bulging out of their legs. An efficient solution that will help to treat the problem is referred to as sclerotherapy. This is a treatment that is offered by medical facilities such as Intermountain Vein Center, where a doctor would inject a solution into the affected areas.

This solution is essentially designed to close the veins so that they disappear over the course of a few weeks. You’ll need to consult with a doctor to determine when this treatment is safe to consider as some recommend waiting at least 6 months after giving birth.

beautiful baby looking out from under blanket

C-Section Scars

If you happened to have a C-section then you’ve likely noticed the “battle scar” going across the tummy. Though scarring is common and your body’s way of healing from the surgery, it can still be a real kill-joy to look at. Even if you vow to never wear a bikini again, you still want to feel confident and with tummy scars, it can be a bit difficult.

The Fix: While some scars will become a lot thinner over the next year or so, treating the scars early is essentially the best way to make them less visible. There are several options to consider for fixing this problem. Over the counter creams, for instance, with an active ingredient onion extract can help to significantly reduce the appearance of the scars. Medical treatment options would include solutions like laser surgery or steroid injections.

Saggy Breasts

When your body is going through the changes of pregnancy and childbirth, your breasts seem to take a serious blow. What were once perky breasts are now saggy, which can really make you feel unattractive or old. Sagging breasts are caused by hormones which cause the breast tissue to expand and the skin to stretch. While giving birth and breast feeding can often help the breast tissue to shrink, the skin doesn’t bounce back as easily.

The Fix: Before you run out and try to purchase breast firming creams you should be forewarned that in many cases they aren’t as effective. If you want to get those breasts back in shape, it is recommended that you exercise. Choosing exercises that specifically tone the pectoral muscles located near the breasts will help lift them back up. This can include push-ups and chest presses. Be sure to wait until you’ve been cleared by the doctor before you start exercising again.


Flabby Stomach

Most women report dropping their pregnancy weight after giving birth. However, there always seem to be that little bulge around the tummy area that just won’t go away. You’ve tried sit-ups and crunches but still can’t get rid of it. The reason – most of the flab is nothing more than stretched out muscle and skin.

The Fix: The trick is to switch up your exercise routine. Crunches are only designed to help deal with the lengthwise muscles in the stomach. However, the problem is in the transverse muscles or the horizontal muscles in the abdomen. First, you want to make sure that you’re doing cardio so that you can reduce the body fat altogether. However, exercises such as planks, lying leg lifts, and the stomach vacuum, for instance, are great ways to target those horizontal muscles.

Stretch Marks

Many women end up with stretch marks after giving birth. This is a direct result of your skin stretching to accommodate your growing body.

The Fix: There are a ton of creams out there that advertise the miracle of reducing stretch marks, but not all are created equally. It is ideal to select a Retin-A cream that can be used after pregnancy. The cream is said to boost the development of collagen which helps to firm the fibers where the skin stretched.

Getting your body back to what it was before the baby arrived will require a little patience and the right treatment. With time, however, you’ll be summer ready and feeling great. Remember, because your body is still changing after pregnancy you want to talk any solutions over with your doctor prior to getting started. Ultimately, your health is what matters most.


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Adorable children’s titles from Paragon



I adore children’s books. So much so I still have many of my favorite book from when I was a child (the very same books I read when I was younger). I also saved my children’s favorite books over the years too in hopes that one day they can pass them on to their children and grandchildren.

I often receive book to review. Some I end up donating to the reading teacher at our local elementary school. Others I adore so much that I keep them for my future grandchildren.

Parragon, a book publisher, sent me some absolutely adorable children’s book to review.

I love you mommy

I Love You, Mommy

I Love You, Mommy was written and illustrated by Jillian Harker and Kristina Stephenson.

Baby bear wants to go exploring and do fun things like go fishing and climb trees. He thinks he knows how to do all of these things on his own, but what he learns is that mommy bear needs to show him how to do these things safely and properly. He also learns another valuable lesson – just how much his mommy loves him and how she will always be there for him.

This is a small board book which is great for little hands.

The illustrations are adorable! I am keeping this book to read to my future grandchildren some day.

I’m not sure of the reading level, but I would think maybe 5 or 6 years old and up.

Red Fish Yellow Fish

Red Fish, Yellow Fish

Red Fish, Yellow Fish is a book about colors. It’s a chunky board book with thick pages and a hole that goes through the whole book which makes it easy for little ones to hold on to.

The book is all about colors and the creatures that live in the ocean.

The words are very simple, making this a great book for little ones just learning to read. The words include the various colors (red, yellow, blue…) and word like boat, fish and crab.

The illustrations are really cute and very colorful. I can see this book becoming a favorite with little ones, and with summer upon us this book would make a great summertime book.

This book would also make a delightful baby shower gift or a gift for new parents.

If you are interested in learning more about either of these books you can visit the Parragon website at www.Parragon.com. They publish a variety of books including children’s books and books for adults. They also publish books with popular characters like Disney Princesses and Pixar’s Finding Dory. They also have a nice assortment of craft-like books and gift sets.

Parragon can also be found on social media. All of their links are found on the bottom of their website.



*I received free copies in order to do this review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way. 

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Fun new products from beloved author Eric Carle



If you are a parent or grandparent, chances are you a familiar with the author Eric Carle. Eric Carle penned the classic book The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Brown Bear Brown Bear What Do You See?, The Very Quiet Cricket and The Mixed Up Chameleon, to name a few.

I grew up reading The Very Hungry Caterpillar. In fact, I have a copy of the book and plush Very Hungry Caterpillar proudly displayed on one of our bookcases. You can see it in the above photo (bottom left of the bookcase).

The Very Hungry Caterpillar, to me, is a classic children’s book and Eric Carle is a beloved author. It comes as no surprise that you can purchase things featuring the Caterpillar. I have seen t-shirts, tote bags and even plush toys (like the one I have). Now you can use the Very Hungry Caterpillar to help your little one fall asleep at night too.


Eric Carle Musical Night Light and Soother ($39.95)

This is an adorable nightlight that features the Very Hungry Caterpillar that actually lights up at night.

  • Makes the perfect addition to a baby nursery or child’s bedroom
  • Soothes baby or child to sleep with three calming sound modes- two lullabies and rain sound for white noise
  • Night light illuminates in green and blue color modes
  • Unique touch sensors allow for easy volume, light and sound controls
  • Shuts off automatically after 40 minutes (15 minutes after the average baby is in a deep sleep)
  • Turn on both sound and light or use solely as night light

Runs on 3 AAA batteries or included AC adapter. I appreciate that it runs on both because it makes it portable so you can take it with you on the go.

The lullabies sound sweet. The white noise it just a light static noise, which oddly enough, some people find relaxing (I prefer ocean sounds and rain).

The “buttons” are more like touch pads. I like that more than buttons because when its not in use (or when you child outgrows it), you can still use it as a decoration.

When the caterpillar lights up it’s a soft light. It’s not too bright. It is a nice nightlight and I like that it shuts off after 40 minutes. You don’t have to worry about leaving it on all night if you are running it off batteries (you wouldn’t want to waste the batteries).

When it lights up it almost has a pulsating action to it. At first I didn’t like that aspect of it, but it grew on me.

The product retails for $39.95. I see it on Amazon for $24.99, which is a much more appropriate price for this cute little light and sound device.


Eric Carle Musical Soother and Star Projector

This product is similar to the one mentioned above, and it plays the same sounds and lullabies. The only difference is that this one projects images on the wall or ceiling (depending on the direction you point it).

  • Soothes baby to sleep with three calming sound modes- two lullabies and rain sound for white noise
  • Projects 3 color modes (blue, green and orange) of stars and butterflies onto ceiling or walls
  • Unique touch sensors allow for easy volume, light and sound controls
  • Shuts off automatically after 40 minutes (15 minutes after the average baby is in a deep sleep)
  • Conveniently sized for travel- fits in your diaper bag or purse
  • Turn on both sound and light or use solely as projector
  • Runs on AAA batteries

This one cannot be plugged in. It’s made to be portable. It’s small in size too which is good for traveling. You can keep it in your diaper bag and use it any time your little one needs to get some sleep.

This “soother” is a small cube. It comes with a stand. You can rest it on the stand in any direction you want so that you can project the images (stars and butterflies) on either a wall or the ceiling. It fits in the stand with the corner of the cube.

I thought it might fall out of the stand because it seems to slide around a bit, but so far that hasn’t happened.

The images it projects are stationary. They don’t move, however they do change colors. You can select from either blue, green or orange.

The Musical Soother retails for $27.99.

Both of these products would be ideal for an Eric Carle and/or Very Hungry Caterpillar fan. They also make great additions to a nursery or child’s room. Even us “big kids” can appreciate these darling products.

What do you think about these products that feature the Very Hungry Caterpillar?

Are you a fan of Eric Carle? What is your favorite book?

Feel free to share your thoughts. I always love to hear from readers.


*I received free product in order to do this review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way. 

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Bringing up Baby: Costs & Habit Insights of the American Mom from zulily.com



In celebration of moms this Mother’s Day, online retailer zulily.com is honoring new moms nationwide by taking a closer look at something they all can relate to –budgeting for all things baby!

Read on here for some of the survey insights they found regarding spending and saving habits when preparing for baby:

  • With annual childcare costs hovering around $6,000, it’s crucial to choose (and pay!) the right person to watch your kids. In our survey Julia Roberts was voted the top celeb moms would let babysit, but Kim Kardashian didn’t make the cut and was only selected by 3% of respondents.
  • Raising kids can get pretty pricey, so it’s no surprise a third of mothers surveyed said they’d compete in a monthly random dance battle (32%) in exchange for free baby gear, attire, etc.
  • Almost half of mothers surveyed (45%) said the most missed pre-mom indulgence is actually having a day off.
  • 33% of moms agreed that the most common squabble couples have regarding new parenting is about money.

With all the above stats, it’s no wonder moms everywhere are always on the lookout for smarter ways to spend on baby, and online retailer zulily is dedicated to helping their plight by serving up fresh, unexpected items for baby and the whole family, in fact, just in the last year customers have saved millions of dollars on baby gear items. Here’s the breakdown:

  • Savings on baby blankets: over $2.4M
  • Total savings on key items needed to set up a nursery: over $2.6M
  • Savings on all baby feeding supplies: over $4.5M

Be sure to check back on zulily.com or on their app every morning to discover new finds, especially on Mother’s Day (May 8th) for their Moms First event, to shop everything a new mama wouldn’t want to be without.

mothers_day_infographic - FINAL


*The study was conducted online using a Google Consumer Survey, which uses inferred demographic and location information to employ stratified sampling method by distributing the surveys based on the targeted audience to its publisher network and/or android smartphone users. The study consisted of 1000 respondents between April 4th and April 7th among women aged 25-54. The margin of error is +/-5 percentage points.

**Sales Data Methodology: The methodology used to report on the 2015-16 maternity and infant purchasing trends was created by reviewing more than 262,000 products, from April 2015 – April 2016. zulily has approximately 5 million active customers, as of Q4 2015.


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