We Won the Impressions Hardwood Flooring Giveaway!

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I posted a little while ago that Impressions Hardwood Collection was running a $3,000 hardwood floor giveaway.  Well, we won!  We will be closing on the house (where the new flooring will be installed) at the end of September, so stay tuned for blog and Facebook updates for the before and after!

 

You can follow me on Facebook here

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or subscribe to my blog at right.

 

Be sure to head over to Impressions’ Facebook page and give them a like if you want to stay in the loop for potential future giveaways.  Check them out here on Facebook.

Housewarming Gift Ideas

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My husband and I are in the final stages of buying a house.  We haven’t closed on it yet, so we won’t have any pictures for you for a few weeks.  All of these preparations for the big day when we sign on the final dotted line has me thinking of all the repairs and purchases we’ll need to make before we even move in.

We aren’t new to moving.  In the almost seven years we’ve been together, we’ve moved four times.  But, those were to rentals where the landlord was responsible for providing repairs and basic items, like smoke detectors and fire extinguishers.  In honor of this upcoming life event, I’ve compiled a list of AWESOME housewarming gifts that a new homeowner (or even a new renter) would really love.

Housewarming Gift Ideas from thelittledabbler

1.) Address Labels

One of the first things any new homeowner will need to do is update all of their accounts and stationary to reflect their new address.  Seeing the new address written out all on of the incoming and outgoing mail makes everything more real.  Make your own or buy some pre-made ones, like these from Shutterfly.

I'm loving these everyday labels from Shutterflly!

I’m loving these everyday labels from Shutterflly!

2.) We Moved! Cards

One of the first things you’ll do when you get these keys to the new houses is update your Facebook status to tell everyone the news!  Don’t deny it, because it’s inevitable and no one blames you.  It’s exciting!  You’ll also want to let all your relatives, especially the ones not in tune with social media, know your new address.  Enter the traditional We Moved announcement.  You can make some yourself and give them to your friend to mail out, or check out these cute ones in thelittledabbler Etsy shop.

WE MOVED! Printable Moving Announcement Cards from thelittledabbler Etsy Shop

WE MOVED! Printable Moving Announcement Cards from thelittledabbler Etsy Shop

3.) Weekly subscription to the local newspaper

What better way for a newbie to the neighborhood to connect to the community than by knowing what’s happening from week to week.  A newspaper subscription is usually the last thing on the list of purchases when buying a home.

4.) Housewarming Gift Basket

Neatly arrange any of these items in a themed container, like a laundry basket, utility bucket, garbage can, or wheelbarrow.  As a bonus, create an Emergency Contact list, like this one, that lists the phone number and addresses of the local municipality building, police, fire department, etc.

Housewarming Gift Basket

 For more great housewarming gift ideas,

follow my We Moved! Pinterest Board:

Follow thelittledabbler’s board We Moved! on Pinterest.

Get Paid to Take Surveys!

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If you’re reading this blog, chances are you are a busy mom like me (or about to be one!) and possibly could use a little extra cash.  Did you know you can actually get paid to take surveys?  You can!  I’ve been taking paid surveys for a over a year now.  Not only are they monetarily rewarding, but their fun, too!  My favorite survey site is MintVine.

MintVine

Signing up for MintVine is quick, easy, and free!  Once you’re signed up, you’ll receive e-mails when a new survey is ready for you to take, or just log in to MintVine when you want to take surveys!  You’ll earn points for each survey.  When you collect 1000 points, you can cash out $10.  MintVine also features a daily poll worth anywhere from 5 to 10 points.

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So, what are you waiting for?

Click here to sign-up with MintVine today!

Disclaimer: This is NOT a sponsored post, but it does contain referral links.  I am actually a MintVine user and I love it!

 

Summer Style Giveaway by Impressions

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Impressions Hardwood Collection is holding a flooring giveaway worth $3,000 in hardwood flooring.  The contest ends August 31, 2014, so get pinning!

 

I entered because my husband and I are in the process of purchasing a 100+ year old farmhouse that needs EVERY, and I mean the literally, floor in the house redone.  Here are some pictures of the floors throughout the house:

Bedrooms Mud Room

The carpets that remain in the house smell strongly of cat pee.  I own three cats and our rental house doesn’t smell like cats at all, so I fear what might be under those carpets!  The last photo is of the mud room.  It wouldn’t be so bad if there wasn’t black tar-like gunk and dirt embedded in it.  The kitchen and dining room (not pictured) have newly installed floated laminate flooring.  The problem?  An amateur installed them, resulting in HUGE bubbles that crack and sink down when you step on it.

All of the rooms where the carpet was torn up show the original hardwood floors.  The second set of side-by-side photos shows two of the three bedrooms.  The floors, however, have missing pieces, holes throughout, and had been painted and warped over time.  THIS HOUSE NEEDS SOME TLC.

I’m crossing my fingers in hopes I win because this is the sort of blessing we need!

Here’s my board I created for the contest.  If you like what you see, feel free to repin and comment!

Follow thelittledabbler’s board Summer Style Giveaway by Impressions on Pinterest.

Honestly Good Products from The Honest Company

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Going Natural with Honestly good products from The Honest Company  ||  thelittledabbler.com

Recently, I posted about my family’s decision to start converting the products we use from the traditional, name brands  that contain extremely dangerous chemicals to all natural (or as close to natural as possible) products.  I researched long and hard for a cost-effective and readily available read that as ships fast) source for products deemed safe by the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep® Cosmetics Database.  

I remembered hearing about The Honest Company long ago before I cared about what I was putting in and on my body, so I looked up their products.  Almost all of them are completely natural and nearly 100% safe to use!

No harsh chemicals, no bio-accumulation no harming the environment, no wondering if I’m slowly killing myself!  No parabens, endocrine disruptors, carcinogens, or any other of those dangerous chemicals you should never ever use.

I want to be upfront, this is NOT a sponsored post.  I truly found this on my own and want to share with you how great these products are.

I ordered the Essentials Bundle Free Trial (you pay $5.95 shipping), and it arrive within 4 business day!  It’s pictured above.  It included hand soap, shampoo+body wash, face+body lotion, healing balm, and multi-surface cleaner.  I loved them so much that I used a coupon and signed up for their full-sized Essentials Bundle.  Yes, I received FULL SIZED laundry detergent, shampoo+body wash, conditioner, multi-surface cleaner, and baby powder for $27.52 total with the coupon.  Even better, it arrived from California to my doorstep in Pennsylvania in TWO DAYS.   How awesome is that!

So, what do you say?  Why not give it a try to see how you like it!  You can purchase a bundle or free trial here.  Be sure to look up some coupon codes here to save you even more!  Below I’ll review some of the products I used and hope it convinces you even more to sign up!

 

Shampoo+Body Wash

I was worried about trying the all-natural shampoo because the ones I had tried in the past made my hair straw-like and lacking luster.   The shampoo was a little thicker that normal shampoo, which is usually of a whipped texture, but as soon as I added a little more water it suds up just like regular shampoo.  It rinsed out normally, leaving my hair smelling lightly and pleasantly floral.  With the conditioner, my hair looks and feel amazing!  I’d say it’s even better than when I used my favorite Infusium 23 which weighed down my hair, stripping it of its body.  The Honest Company shampoo+body wash isn’t heavy and doesn’t leave residue, so now my hair has amazing body just by washing.  Oh, and did you notice it’s a combination body wash, too?  My husband and son love that feature!

Healing Balm

This balm comes in a lotion tube and has a really yummy buttery scent to it.  Make sure to shake the tube first to mix the natural oils with the other ingredients!  Then apply this incredibly smooth, creamy balm on your baby’s diaper rash, your rash or abrasion, small cuts, cracked skin, or anywhere else in need of a little healing moisture.  It soaks  in quickly and leaves the skin feeling super smooth.

Face+Body Lotion

This daily lotion smells straight-up like sunflower kernels.  It’s a really buttery summertime treat.  I use it on my legs and feet after showering so my skin doesn’t become white and flaky the next day.  It totally worked!  This lotion soaks in super fast and has a sensual, smooth, whipped texture!  You won’t have that icky sticky lotion feeling like you do with name-brand products.  It’s also great that this lotion is really light and can be used on both body and face.

Now are you ready to give it a try?  Great!

Shop The Honest Company Here

 

Reading Is Key to Language Development

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As my husband and I cleaned up the living room before heading to bed, we began stacking all the books we had read to our 19-month-old son that day.  Here’s the stack:

Reading is KEY to Language Development  ||  thelittledabbler.com

That’s a lot of books!  By no means, however, is it too many.  There is no such thing as reading too much.

Exposure to New Words and Proper Sentence Structure

The more a toddler is exposed to the written word, the faster his speech will develop.  He will be exposed to words in the text that do not typically come up in everyday speech and proper sentence forms (syntax) that we sometimes skip over when speedily communicating with each other.  For instance, here in southwestern Pennsylvania, it’s common to hear someone ask, “Where you at?”  To non-natives, this is grating on the ears and possibly difficult to understand.  In a child’s book, sentence won’t be as poorly formed as my example.  Instead, children will encounter this proper construction: “Where are you?”

Sight Words and Naming Objects

Any person offering sage advice on choosing the right books for your baby and toddler will tell you to pick books with excellent pictures.  Books are a way for your child to learn about new objects she wouldn’t typically encounter in her everyday environment.  You’re child may not have ever seen an elephant in person, but she will definitely be able to identify one if exposed to the word simultaneously with a picture.  Books with vivid, true-to-life rather than abstract illustrations will help your child make the connection between the object and the word used to describe the object.

FOR MORE INFORMATION about these topics and the power of reading, check out these links:

Book Recommendations

Newborn

0-9 Months Old

10-18 Months Old

Choosing the Right Books For Infants (0-18 Months Old)

Language Development: Major Dos and Don’ts of Reading With Baby

Here I answer your language development questions such as: How do babies acquire language? Can I read anything I want to baby?  Why can’t I just talk to baby?  When should I read to baby?  … and much, much more.

Teaching the Alphabet to Toddlers (in 7 Simple Steps)

Top 10 Tips to Help Children Love Reading by Free Little Words

Help Needed – Earn Coupon for My Etsy Shop

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Hello parents of small children! 

I’m looking to expand my product offerings at thelittledabbler Etsy shop to include birth announcements.  Here’s where I need your help!  

I am in need of professional quality newborn baby pictures to use on the samples of my announcements.  I need these styles of photos:

 boy/blue

pink/girl

green/gender neutral

white/gender neutral

brown/burlap/natural


If I approve your photo and plan to use it in a birth announcement, you will receive a coupon code for $5 off any item in my shop.

If you have a professional quality picture** that you would be willing to share for me to use as examples for my shop, please contact me at thelittledabbler@gmail.com  with subject: Birth Announcement Photo.  I can keep the source of the photo completely anonymous for your child’s protection or credit you (especially if you are a photographer) any way you would like on the listing. 

**I am looking for photos such as the following.  You must own the copyright to the photo.


Thank you in advance!