Sunday, December 4, 2016

Sharing our Feast #actsofkindness

Our feast 

I have shared before about all the ways we help our community at school.  Our Thanksgiving Feast was such a fun event for our kids and then fun for us to feed people at Rowan Helping Ministries which is our local shelter.  The children each brought something for our feast and then we came together to celebrate Thanksgiving.  We also brought in donations of peanut butter and jelly to donate.  I love seeing my 4 and 5 year olds get so much joy in helping others.  They are learning to be an important part of their communities at a young age.  I am honored to be a part of their little lives!

Wow!  117 lbs of food donated!

Look for ways to be a good steward in your community.  It feels good!



Saturday, December 3, 2016

Weekends with the Wigglesworths- Absence Make the Heart Grow Fonder


Happy Saturday everyone! This is one of those weekends that I am heading to a vendor event as an Independent Avon Representative. I love being at these shows and meeting people and helping them shop for loved ones, but I really wish my girls could be there with me. 


My table from an event I attended in September

This weekend is a busy one. It's just a few weekends before Christmas and while I will be at the 5th Annual Holidays at Whitney Center event, the girls are going to a birthday party for one of their favorite cousins, "baby A". Baby A is not really a baby anymore, she will be turning 3. We have been calling her Baby A since she was born, because she is named after her Grandmother, but I think we're going to have to spend some time working out a new nickname. Any ideas? Toddler A just doesn't have the same ring to it.

After the vendor show and birthday party, I am hoping that the girls come home. They spent last night with their grandparents, and while I love that they get to do things like that, I still really miss them like crazy.  


I hope you have an excellent weekend! 



Friday, December 2, 2016

Gifts that Tell a Story: Storiarts Scarves #Review + #Giveaway #MBPHGG16


Thank you to Storiarts for providing me with product in exchange for my review. All thoughts shared are my own.


Do you love to read? I love literary classics, and that should come as no surprise since I majored in English Lit./Creative Writing. There are so many stories that are so good, you almost wish they were true. It can be fun to see stories come to life on the big screen, but oftentimes, those stories are filled with quotes that we carry with us in our hearts. If you have a favorite line or passage from a story, you might be pleased to know that you can proudly and stylishly display them for all to see.

Storiarts

Stories come to life through beautiful literary goods, like t-shirts, accessories, and more. These beautiful items are handmade by Storiarts, and make perfect gifts for literature lovers. 

Storiarts is a husband-and-wife-led team who have been making hand-made literary themed products in Oregon since 2011. You can find Storiarts Book Scarves and Writing Gloves in boutiques and small bookstores around the USA and Canada, including the prestigious Library of Congress and The New York Public Library Shop. Tori invented their first product, the Pride and Prejudice Book Scarf to give as Christmas presents during a lean year. The rest is history, as they say.

My mother-in-law is a librarian. Books are her life and her livelihood. She loves to read, and has a special place in her heart for the classics, like I do. Among some of her favorite books are Sherlock Holmes, The Hound of the Baskervilles. When I saw that Storiarts had a beautiful Sherlock Holmes Infinity Scarf in their shop, I knew exactly what I wanted to give her for Christmas.

Sherlock Holmes Infinity Scarf by Storiarts

Tori so kindly sent me a Sherlock Holmes infinity scarf to check out for myself, and I could hardly wait! The scarf is so beautiful, and it a perfect compliment to just about any outfit. The scarf itself is made of 100% jersey knit cotton, and is cream in color with black print. The print from the book is clear, and easily recognizable. The scarf is a great length- wear it long, or double it up. It's 63" in circumference and 12" wide.

Love the way the scarf drapes and can be worn so beautifully!

The scarf is gorgeous when on- it drapes nicely, and I love the way the story print just sort of swirls together. If you take a close look, you can definitely read the story from the scarf. The scarf is lightweight. It only weighs about 8 oz, so it's nice and light to wear all year long. There are summer weight scarves available, as well.

I love this scarf and I want to keep it for myself!

Truly, I love this scarf. I have a lot of scarves, but this scarf is absolutely unique, and I have never seen anyone else in my town with a scarf like this. As good as I think it looks on me, I know it'll look even better on my mother-in-law, and she'll truly appreciate it. I know the ladies who work with her at the library are going to think it's so cool, and they're all going to be asking where they can get one!

Sherlock Holmes Book Scarf - Storiarts - 2

Sherlock Holmes Scarf Details

A page from The Hound of the Baskervilles on super-soft Infinity Scarf! Show your great taste in books and stay warm at the same time.

Each Storiarts Book Scarf carefully handmade from cream-colored 100% cotton jersey knit, about 63" in circumference and 12" wide. 

Additional Details:

This literary scarf weighs about 8oz
Reference the last picture to read the included text.
The ink has been heat set and will not wash out.
Each scarf comes with its own set of care instructions: Spot treat recommended or a gentle wash cycle in cool water. Hang or lay flat to dry. Iron ok and it is safe to iron on the print.
This is an infinity/round/circle scarf.
The ink has a very slight texture to it.
All orders, except multi-unit orders, are shipped within poly bags that easily fit into most mailboxes.
Storiarts scarves are patent protected so you know you're getting an original, high quality Book Scarf!



 There are so many other beautiful gift options available from Storiarts. The scarves are gorgeous, but take a look at some of the other items I am loving...

Anne of Green Gables Book Scarf - Storiarts - 1
Anne of Green Gables Scarf


Hamlet Writing Gloves - Storiarts - 1
Hamlet Writing Gloves


Peter Pan Pillow Cover - Storiarts - 1
Peter Pan Pillow Cover


Storybook Baby Blanket - Storiarts - 1
Storybook Baby Blanket


Book Band Headband - Storiarts - 1
Bookband Headband


Pride and Prejudice Long Sleeve Burnout Raglan Tee - Storiarts - 1
Pride and Prejudice Burnout Tee


Which gifts are calling out to you? I love the writing gloves, and would love a pair of those for myself. I also love the burnout tee! The headband would make a great gift for my sister-in-law, and I know a special friends and former British Lit. teacher who would love the Hamlet print products! I could see a lot of these in my home or home office, in a classroom, in the library, home library or reading nook. If there is a book lover in your life, and you're wanting to give them something unique and meaningful, check out the selection at Storiarts. These original, one of a kind gifts will not leave you disappointed!

Want it? Get it!

Head on over to Storiarts to browse all of their beautiful literary goods and gifts. Connect with Storiarts on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.



Want it? Win it!

One lucky MBP reader will win their choice of a Storiarts scarf or pair of gloves. Giveaway is open to US residents, 18 and older. No PO Boxes. Just use the RC entry form below to enter for your chance to win. MBP is not responsible for prize fulfillment. See our policies page for details.

Special thanks to the Storiarts team for allowing me to review and share about their fabulous literary gifts this holiday season, and for offering this wonderful giveaway for our readers. Look for Storiarts in our 2016 Holiday Gift Guide.

Good luck!



Spread Warmth & Cheer This Holiday Season with Kristyn Schultz Creative Partner with Initials, Inc. #MBPHGG16




Thank you to Kristyn Schultz, for providing me with product in exchange for my honest review. All thoughts shared below are my own.





When I was growing up, it was highly unusual to find anything with my name on it. I always got really excited anytime something came with those "stickers" that allowed you to do your own professionalization, because that was often the only way an item would have my name on it. Over the years, my name became a little more popular, and now (even though I am 37 years old) every time I see "Vanessa" on anything, I feel downright giddy!


Presented by Kristyn Schultz. MBP Spotlight Sponsor


Recently, I had the chance to work with MBP Spotlight Sponsor, Kristyn Schultz, who is a Creative Partner with Initials, Inc. If you or someone you know has a hard time finding personalized items, you'll definitely LOVE Initials, Inc. 


Meet Kristyn Schultz

Kristyn is a mom to two sweet children, an 8 year old daughter and a 6 year old son. She loves spending time with her kids, and the family enjoys outdoor activities and games together. I have gotten to know Kristyn a bit, through Mommy's Block Party, and I'm certain that if we met in person, we would be instant friends. She is an amazing woman and I am glad I had the chance to work with her on this review!

Initials, Inc. is a family owned company that creates quality personalized products available exclusively through their Creative Partners (what they call their consultants). The company recognizes the uniqueness of every individual and has seen products take on a "personality of their own" once Creative Partners and their customers start the designing process.  

Kristyn sent me a beautiful Charcoal Quilted Throw, personalized with MY NAME! When I opened the package, I was sincerely so overjoyed that the little girl in me sent happy tears down my cheeks!

My beautifully personalized quilted throw- it's as long as my couch!


I love my quilted throw! It is long enough to cover me comfortably (it's as long as the seating part of my couch) and the material is soft and cozy. I will definitely be snuggling up on the couch with it this winter, if I can get it away from whichever daughter might be using it at the time! 

D getting cozy with MY Quilted Throw, playing that she is too distracted to hear me say that my name is on it!




R clearly isn't going to let my name being on it stop her from getting cozy with the Quilted Throw

Now, I do have some slightly disappointing news. The Charcoal Quilted Throw is currently on back order and has an ETA of mid-December. There is a silver lining though, and that is that the RedMocha, and Cream Quilted Throws are still available (along with some other really great products) and awaiting YOUR personalization. 

The East West Pillow would pair nicely with the Quilted Throw
The "Hobo" bag in Sugarplum is going on my Christmas List!


The "Double Dish" is great for someone who is always bringing a dish (or two) to a party! 

Want to Shop Initials, Inc?

Kristyn can help you find a great personalized gift for anyone on your holiday shopping list  and the personalization is always FREE!
Visit Kristyn's website today to browse the catalog or check through the "Our Favorites" section for great gift ideas. If you have some questions, you can e-mail Kristyn and she will gladly assist you. 
Be sure to request to join Kristyn's Initials, Inc. group on Facebook to keep up to date on any upcoming events or sales. 


Special Thanks to Kristyn Schultz for allowing me to share about Initials, Inc. for the holidays with our readers. 




Celebrate National Mutt Day With Peppy Pups! #Giveaway #MBPHGG16



 Today is National Mutt Day! This special day was created to raise awareness of the large amount of mixed breed dogs in shelters around the nation. Mutts tend to be more healthy, better behaved and live longer then pure bred pups, but are often overlooked. I know that my girls would love to celebrate by giving one of those sweet dogs a loving home, but that is not going to work at this point in our lives.


Peppy Pups from TPF Toys are the official plush dog of National Mutt Day. The Pups feature spring loaded legs and unique paw pads that work together to help the Peppy Pups move. Thanks to this engineering, there is no battery needed to get an authentic pet experience. When its owner walks the puppy it can run, jump, and wag their tail like a real dog! The Peppy Pup remains super cuddly with it's ultra-soft fur giving the owner all the perks of a really puppy, without the responsibility.

See the Peppy Pups in action...
video

My girls are obsessed with puppies! They talk about them constantly, love puppy videos and even pretend to be puppies together. Our oldest has been asking for one for the past couple of months. We are currently living in an apartment that doesn't allow dogs, and don't plan on getting one for at least a few years. I'm stoked that they'll have a Peppy Pup to play with, I know they will love it!


Peppy Pups will make a wonderful gift for the animal loving child in your life. My favorite part is that there's no batteries. A lot of parents (myself included) prefer non-electronic toys, this can sometimes make it hard to do holiday and birthday shopping. For those families, a Peppy Pup is a great solution! For more information about National Mutt Day visit their Facebook.

Want it? Get it!
Peppy Pups from TPF Toys is available at retailers nationwide. 
To order online:



 Want it? Win it! 
We are giving one of our reader's the chance to win a Peppy Pup! Giveaway is open to US residents, 18 and older. No PO Boxes. Use the RC entry form below to enter for your chance to win. MBP is not responsible for prize fulfillment. Please see our policies page for details.

Follow Peppy Pups:

Thank you to TPF Toys for this awesome giveaway! I will be receiving a Peppy Pup for sharing this information, all thoughts are my own.


Max & Madeleine- All Natural Gifts For The Whole Family #Review #MBPHGG16


Thank you to Kim with Max & Madeleine for providing me with product in exchange for my honest review. All thoughts are my own.


When I had my daughter N, I decided to switch to all natural beauty products. N loved to cuddle after nursing, and I hated that I could smell my antiperspirant on her delicate skin when she would wake up from a nap. I had heard that the aluminum-based antiperspirant had been linked to health problems (such as breast cancer and Alzheimer's), so that was the first product to go. Soon, my beauty routine consisted of very few ingredients; baking soda, apple cider vinegar, coconut oil, castile soap and deodorant. I felt great about not using any harmful chemicals, but needed to get out of this rut! 


Max & Madeleine is the result of two moms, Melissa Moritzand and Carolynn Mowen, who needed safe skincare options for their children. Both of Melissa's sons, Dean and Max, have food and chemical sensitivities where most products cause extreme allergic reactions. Carolynn's daughter, Madeleine, has sensitive skin that needs extra TLC. After a lot of frustration looking for products, the two women decided to take matters into their own hands.


"At Max & Madeleine, we truly understand that what you put on your skin is as important as what you put in your body. That is why we are on a mission to give our customers only the best products that are pure, non-toxic, and nutrient-rich. We also value transparency as we list ALL ingredients on our labels. Our products are crafted with organic ingredients when possible and are made right here in the USA. We do not use any harmful ingredients in our products, ever. That’s our promise."

I was excited when Kim, one of the founding advisers of Max & Madeleine, contacted me to do this review! I had never heard of the company before, but loved that they carry products for the whole family and take all the guesswork out of shopping for safe skincare. After much deliberation, I choose the Mom-To-Be Gift Set. No, I'm not a mom-to-be, but the products seemed like they would be great for anyone : )

Ingredient list for the soap- simple but effective 

My gift set came right before Thanksgiving, and the timing couldn't have been better! This was my first year cooking the entire meal, and the girls did not make it easy on me. I chose the lavender scent, which provided some much-needed stress relief.  

This stick packs a punch

Breathe Balm
This balm features a mix of antiseptic and antibacterial essential oils that help to ease the symptoms of a cold; relieves congestion, headache pain and boosts immunity. I didn't have a cold to test the decongestive properties (thank goodness!), but I can attest to this stick working wonders on a headache. I'm breastfeeding and prefer not to take any pain-relievers, so being able to dab this on my temples and experience relief was a miracle! No one likes cooking with a Headache. 

A little goes a long way

Healing Balm
The Healing Balm is my favorite product out of the set. Me and my girls have very dry skin in the winter, and this relieves pain, hydrates, and protects. After applying, your skin feels soft, not sticky or slimy like most lotions and creams. With so many dishes to clean, my hands were looking pretty rough! Luckily, this came to the rescue.

Goes on clear- no white residue 

Lavender Deodorant
I have tried many natural deodorants and was really impressed by Max & Madeleine's. Usually I need to order extra-strength products, so I was worried this wouldn't be strong enough. I had no issues at all! I stayed fresh after running around the grocery store and countless hours in the kitchen. I love that it's so smooth and feels cool after applying. 

*If you have never used an all natural deodorant, you may experience some redness after the first few applications. This is simply your body detoxing from the previous chemicals in antiperspirant. Most people will not have any reaction*

Check out those suds! 

Organic Bar Soap
This soap creates a nice, thick lather. It works amazing as a hand or body soap, it leaves your skin feeling clean but not dry. You can tell that the essential oils used in their products are top quality, they all smell amazing!

Treat yourself

Honey Lemon Lavender Sugar Scrub
After three days of non-stop shopping, cooking, and toddler wrangling I was ready to relax! This sugar scrub turned my shower into a spa. It has a thick consistency and as you rub it onto your skin the sugar gently exfoliates then dissolves. After rinsing, it leaves your skin feeling super soft. 

I decided to surprise my husband with a foot treatment after dinner. I soaked his feet, massaged with the scrub, rinsed, then applied the Healing Balm. He was in heaven! 

$77.95
Our Mom-To-Be Gift Set is perfect for the new mom. This gift set includes our Deodorant, Organic Bar Soap, Breathe Balm, Healing Balm and Sugar Scrub. Choose one of our three packages; Lavender, Citrus or Sugar & Spice

Some more great gifts to check out:

$20.00
Buy these two item together for special holiday price!


$69.95
Gift Set for your Teen including our WASH!cleanser for teens, HYDRATE! moisturizer for teens and BANISH! spot treatment for teens

$47.50
A great gift set for a new baby including our diaper cream, baby lotion and unscented baby wash.

This lovely assortment of products is just what I needed to get out of my beauty rut, and make it through Thanksgiving craziness. It would make a wonderful gift for anyone looking to make a switch to all natural products, or an expecting mother. All the products are also available to purchase separately.

If you're passionate about non-toxic products and are looking to make some extra cash, Max & Madeleine is now looking for consultants . Normally the starter kit is $99 but they are running a special until December 15th where it is only $69 to join. There are less than 400 consultants, so it's a wonderful ground floor opportunity! Contact Kim for more information.

Want it? Get it!
Visit Kim's personal shop shop.maxandmadeleine.com/kimchristenson to order these great products and discover many more!

Follow Max & Madeleine on:
Facebook
Instagram
Pinterest

Special thanks to Kim and Max & Madeleine for allowing me to share about their awesome line of skincare products!