Friday, November 30, 2012

Starlooks November Box (Review)

Last month, I shared my excitement with you all about being able to try out a gorgeous Starbox from Starlooks monthly subscription service. Well, I also got lucky enough to review the November Starbox from Starlooks, and boy, was it filled with some wonderful goodies!


The November Starbox was semi-customizable. I received an e-mail in early November from Starlooks, asking for my skin tone: light, medium, or dark. My sister's skin is super light/fair, but somehow, I sort of got the olive skin tone of some of my Italian ancestors, so I asked for the medium skin tone box. However, the customized boxes were very popular this month, so some of the Starlooks bloggers were not sent the skin tone they requested, because Starlooks wanted to provide the very best customer service to their paying subscribers, which we completely understood. I actually received the light skintone box, instead of the medium box- but guess what? I still love it!

The November Starbox from Starlooks...

Each Starbox ($15.00/mo) arrives prettily packaged-ready for giving, if you'd like to give one as a gift! The Starbox is sent out once a month, right to your door, and contains 3-4 full sized samples of beautiful Starlooks cosmetics or beauty products. Each box also comes with a small crystal.

My Starlooks goodies are all wrapped up in my November Starbox...

November Starbox Contents: Eyeshadow Pallet, Lipstick, and Mascara Guard, plus- my crystal, of course!

As I removed the lids and covers from my November Starlooks products, I was so excited to find gorgeous colors, which I couldn't wait to try out! I was most excited about the pretty four color eyeshadow pallet. Of course, my camera sort of ruins the true reflection of these neutral colors- you almost have to see them in person to see how truly lovely they are!

A closer look at this pretty Starbox...

I used the eyeshadows right away! I have been using both the Wiked Wink, and Celestial colors on my eyelids, and using the Pearl Reflections as a highlighter. The Almond is a really nice color to use as a filler in my brows, too! This was actual the perfect pallet for me, as I tend to almost always wear neutrals. I have hazel eyes, and these golden tones, mixed with a raisin quartz colored eyeliner, really make my eyes stand out. So, thanks for the great color pallet, Starlooks!

Pearl Reflection, Celestial, Wicked Wink and Almond- so pretty!

Excellent blends- the colors shown against my skin.

The November Starbox also included a lovely Nude Tendergloss, which looks like a lipstick, but glides on, wears and shines like a lip gloss! I don't wear dark colors on my lips, anyway- I stick to icy pinks and neutrals, or clear gloss, so this nude shade was actually just right for me! The Tendergloss alone retails for $11.00, and is available in 24 beautiful shades!

Tendergloss Lipstick
Nude Tendergloss Shade

The Mascara Guard is a new concept to me, but I am so glad to have it! How many times have you accidentally gotten your mascara on your eyelids? It happens to me more often than not, and the guard is just a handy little tool that prevents me from getting that mascara all over my dusted lids!

I am so pleased with Starlooks, and feel like a super lucky momma, for being able to work with them! You'll love Starlooks, too! I am not one to spend a lot of money on cosmetics, but $15.00 a month for a box of cosmetics, delivered right to my door, is totally worth it! Starlooks products are gorgeous, long-lasting, and they're totally unique! I can't wait to see what the December Starbox will look like- I hear it's going to be extra special!


Want It? Buy It!

You can get in on all of this gorgeous fun by heading to Starlooks and signing up to try a monthly Starbox. Try it and like it? Great- continue your subscription, and get the beloved Starbox month after month! The Starbox would make a wonderful gift for the fashionistas in your life- so gift away! You can also purchase individual cosmetics and beauty products on the Starlooks website- mix and match- choose your favorites! You can even purchase past Starboxes (if available) for $25.00! What a deal!

Want to connect with Starlooks? 
Find them on:

Special thanks to Starlooks for allowing us to experience yet another wonderful Starbox!

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Disclosure: Other than the above mentioned products, which I received directly from this sponsor for review purposes, I was not compensated for facilitating this review. All opinions expressed are my own. Your experience may differ.

Coming Soon to DVD and Blu-Ray: The Odd Life of Timothy Green, Plus Activities!

This time of year is all about telling loved ones how much they mean to us and counting our blessings. Share this message with your children this weekend with crafts that are designed to help facilitate conversations about who and what we are thankful for in anticipation of Disney's Tuesday December 4th release of THE ODD LIFE OF TIMOTHY GREEN on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital Platforms.

An easy to assemble Blessings Box made of cut paper and filled with a chocolate is a sweet way to express how much and why you appreciate a special person in your lives, making a great holiday gift kids can make for a coach, teacher or friend. Printable Wish Leaves help kids describe the kind of person they wish to be and can be used as a decorative reminder of their goals. During the holiday season, giving thanks is an important message and Leaf Behinds help kids give the gift of "Thanks" when they want to convey gratitude of good wishes to someone who has made a difference in their lives.

Download Activities

Enjoy, and have a great weekend!

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Disclosure: This is a sponsored post.

Going Back to School on a Budget

I truly enjoyed my college experience several years ago, but it was cut short, when my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. After my junior year, I made the decision to take a break from school, move home, help out with my mother, etc. She she recovered from her surgeries, I thought it would be best to get a full time job to help me pay my own way, and start paying back student loans. My relationship with my (then) boyfriend, who is now my husband, was getting serious, and I knew that I would need to start putting some money away for a wedding, and our future together.

So, I kept on working- and the wedding did come, as well as graduate school for my husband, and then a baby. Here I am, almost thirty, with three years of a wonderful college education, but no degree. Since my college days, I have sort of switched career paths, or I should say that my initial career path has blended nicely with my current career path. Writing has always been a passion, and now that I am constantly working with firms, brands and businesses, I am thinking more and more each day that a degree would be quite useful.

I don't have the extra money, or much extra time, for that matter, to go back to school through the traditional route. I have enjoyed a few online classes, and now that I am a work at home mom, my time is very valuable, and I want to spend it wisely. An MBA program online is much more my cup of tea, these days. It would allow me the flexibility I need, as well as be a much more affordable option for our family. My husband has been encouraging me to go back to school, and it's something I'm looking forward to persuing in the new year. It will be so nice to finally have that piece of paper with my name on it, considering the amount of work that I have already put into my previous studies.

Have you ever considered going back to school 
through an online program?

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Svan Play With Me Toddler Table and Chairs (Review)

I cannot believe how quickly my 'baby' is growing. It seems like only yesterday, I was nursing him to sleep, and now, he's a little tornado, and two years old. He's such a little person now, immitating everything that mommy and daddy do. It's important to me, that he has a place all his own- for playing, creating, quiet time, and what have you. I had been on the hunt for some toddler furniture for Balian's bedroom, without much luck, locally. So, when I was offere the opportunity to review a beautiful Play with Me Toddler Table and Chairs set from Svan, I was pretty stoked!

About Svan

It all started in 1996, when two dads designed the sturdy, and now very popular Svan High Chair. The sturdy, safe, functional design grew widespread attention and interest, and before long, the Svan collection expanded into creating ride-on toys and toddler products.Svan's main focus is on loving life with children. Too often, parents are struggling to find places to put baby/toddler gear and products when company comes over. Svan's products are as beautiful as they are functional- and made to be used, loved and enjoyed for years and years! Many of Svan's products have won international awards, and are made to the highest safety standards, so parents can rest easy, knowing their little ones are safe while eating, playing, etc.

We were lucky enough to be the proud recipients of Svan's Play with Me Toddler Table and Chairs Set, which retails for $200.00. This set comes with a pint sized table, three toddler chairs, and one stool, made to support the weight of an adult, or older child. We asked for the Natural colored set to match the furniture in Balian's room, but the set is also available in Cherry and Espresso.

Svan Play with Me Set- still in the big, blue box!

Our Svan Play with Me Toddler Table Set arrived safely, all in one box, and Balian was very excited to see it! That same day, we removed the (many) pieces from the box, spread them out on our large dining table, and then my husband got to work on putting the set together.

Open box- frame and other pieces (inside the smaller box).

The lid to the box became in instant toy, of course!

All of the pieces were well packaged and protected, and well labeled.

I think my husband was a bit overwhelmed by how many pieces there were to the Svan Play with Me Toddler Table and Chairs Set, at first. Once he laid out the pieces, however, and started reading the instructions, he felt much more at ease, and went right to work on putting the table and chair together. He's a wiz at putting things together- quickly, safely and correctly, so I wasn't worried. The instructions were very clear and simple to follow, with detailed photo diagrams (which helps folks like me, who have trouble reading and following directions!).

Doin' the daddy thing- putting it all together, while we watch...

Working on one of the chairs...

Getting there...

Almost- hang in there!

The table was the first piece to be put together, then the stool, followed by the three chairs. All of the parts were included for Sacha to put this set together, and it took less than forty-five minutes for him to finish the job. It was recommended that we glue some of the pieces, for extra security, and then let it dry overnight. So, we did as directed, and then, we had a little boy who was going haywire to play at his new table!

The next morning, this little guy was excited to get to playing!

And, he got a special treat- breakfast at his very own table!

Daddy even got in on the fun!

I can't tell you how much we have been loving and enjoying this table as a family, and how very special having a little dude table makes Balian feel. It's so much easier for us to sit together at his play table fom Svan to color, read, role play, create, build and discover, than to drag everything out and into the dining room, and deal with tantrums as we try to get Balian to sit in his booster seat. Now, we're the ones who are being invited to come to his room to play. We spend lots of time doing puzzles, and playing pretend together, and we just treasure those precious moments with our son.

Sacha and I feel that the Svan Play with Me Toddler Table and Chairs set is very safe. We've had zero accidents with anything tipping over, or Balian falling out of a chair. I do keep the adult stool pushed underneath of the table, so Balian won't be tempted to play on it. The stool supports my weight very well, though my husband opts for the floor, even though the stool will support up to 250 lbs! How awesome is that!? The table easily wipes clean, and then it's ready for the next adventure!

Features of the Svan Play with Me Toddler Table
(From the Svan website)

Superior Construction
Crafted of high-quality birch wood, this 5-piece set offers a durable and family-friendly table for children from two to seven years of age.

Encourages Child/Parent Interaction
Each set includes a stool, which allows a parent to come down to the child’s level for play. The seats and stool hold up to 250 lbs and are sturdy enough to support an adult.

Stackable Seating
The chairs and stool nest on top of one another, which makes this set easy to store.

Classic Scandinavian Design
Modern Scandinavian design compliments any decor, making this set the perfect addition to any living room, bed room, play room, or nursery.

Perfect For Children's Activities
 The Play With Me Toddler Table & Chairs are ideal for art projects, tea parties, games and other activities.

Dimensions and Weight
Shipping dimensions: 26” x 27” x 4” at 39 lbs.
Assembled dimensions: 25” x 25” x 20”.
Table Height: 20".
Table Diameter: 23 3/4".
Seat Height/Stool Height: 12".
Seat Back Height: 20 1/2".
250 lb. weight rating for chairs, stool and table.
Product Specifications
Lead-free stain finish.
Manufactured using inset nuts, which improves stability and ease of assembly.
Includes a table, three chairs, and a stool.
Assembly required.
CPSIA Compliant.
Care Instructions
Wipe clean with a soft, damp cloth or sponge.
Always dry thoroughly after cleaning or any spills.

Mommy and Balian time at the Svan Play with Me Toddler Table- I got invited to come in for coffee!

Svan has some super cool products for the kiddos! 
Check out some of their other must-see designs...

Creativity Cruiser

Svan Bouncer

Signet Complete Baby High Chair

I have been so impressed by the Svan Play with Me Toddler Table, that I have been recommending it to all of the moms I know who have little ones around Balian's age, and a wee bit older, as well. It's just the perfect size, and encourages creative play for kids all on their own, as well as encourages interaction between parents/caregivers and their children. Balian and I spend the better part of each morning in his room, at the table, doing puzzles, playing with blocks, situating his stuffed animals in the reamining seats and playing restaurant, etc. The table is a must-have for playrooms, bedrooms or nurseries!

The Svan Play with Me Table would make an absolutely exciting gift for kids this holiday season. To me, it seems like a great gift for parents who are expecting, or a great gift from parents or grandparents to a child. It adds a modern touch of fun to any room or play space, and will be used, loved and enjoyed again and again!

Want It? Buy It!

You can purchase the Svan Play with Me Toddler Table, as well as Svan's other wonderful products online at Scandinavian Child. You can also check their website to see where else these products are available. You can also connect with Svan through Scandinavian Child on Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube and Twitter, to catch product news, updates and more!

Special thanks to Scandinavian Child for allowing us to review this wonderful product and share about it with our readers!

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Disclosure: Other than the above mentioned products, which I received directly from this sponsor for review purposes, I was not compensated for facilitating this review. All opinions expressed are my own. Your experience may differ.

A Round of Holiday Winners

Congrats to all of you!
Jolica- Michelle D.H.
Snorg Tees- Maria A.
Manhattan Toy-Wendy R
Congratulations to our winners!
You have been e-mailed and have 48 hours to respond and claim your prize! Please make sure to check your SPAM folders as well and change your settings to allow for MBP emails.
Didn't win this time?
No worries- we have tons of other great giveaways going on right now, and many more to come! Be sure to check us out on Facebook and Twitter, so you never miss a giveaway!

Coming Soon to DVD and Blu-Ray: Thunderstruck (App and Giveaway)

Warner Bros. is proud to announce the release of Thunderstruck on DVD and Blu-ray December 4th 2012, along with the Thunderstruck Blog App!

NBA superstar Kevin Durant plays himself in this action-packed family film about a basketball star who switches talent with a klutzy 16-year-old fan. When Brian (Taylor Gray) magically switches basketball skills with his hero, Kevin Durant, he becomes the star of his high school team... while Kevin Durant suddenly can’t make a shot to save his life! But with the playoffs approaching, Brian learns that being a true winner means working hard at your own game, and he tries to make things right in time to prevent a catastrophic end to his hero’s season.

Want It?  Win It!

One lucky reader will win their very own copy of Thunderstruck from Warner Bros. Have some fun with the above blog app, and then use the Rafflecopter entry form below to enter for your chance to win! Prize will be sent out 2-4 weeks after the contest ends. No P.O. Boxes, US residents, only.

Good luck!

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a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: Mommy's Block Party and its team members are not responsible for prize fulfillment or shipment- this is the understood responsibility of the giveaway sponsor.All materials for this post were provided by Warner Bros.

Tech Lovers Christmas Giveaway Event

  First Place Winner Xbox Bundle: Xbox 360 4GB Console
  • Xbox 360 has blockbuster games, HD movies and controller-free fun for everyone
  • Built-in Wi-Fi for easy connection to Xbox LIVE
  • Super quiet with sleek new design plus matching controller
  • Ready for the controller-free fun of Kinect
Microsoft Xbox Live Gold Subscription Card Boaderlands Game: In a distant future, the planets at the outer edges of the galaxy have become a beacon to fortune seekers and those yearning for a better life off world. 2nd Place Winner Google Nexus 7 Black Wi-Fi 16GB Tablet - ASUS-1B16 The Google Nexus 7 tablet computer is the world's first Android tablet that combines the latest Android 4.1 mobile operating system with a powerful quad-core processor for high-performance computing on the go. An eye-catching 1280 x 800 high-definition display is your touchscreen interface for this Google tablet. The Google Nexus 7 tablet computer's LED-backlit IPS panel is made from scratch-resistant glass to offer crisp images, wide viewing angles and 10-finger multi-touch support. 3rd Place Winner: Blue Hue" Laptop Bundle with optional matching accessories:
  • Blue Laptop
  • Case/Bag
  • Mouse
  • USB Flash Drive
  • Headphones
The event dates: 11/30 - 12/10 Open World Wide. If the winner is outside the use they will receive and online gift card in the prize amount in place of the physical prize. NO EXCEPTIONS.


 For a chance to win one of these three amazing prizes enter the Rafflecopter below ...  

Good Luck!  

Disclosure: Mommy's Block Party is not responsible for prize fulfillment or shipment, nor did any MBP team member receive compensation for participating in this wonderful event.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Paparazzi Accessories (Review & Giveaway)

If there's one thing I love about the holiday season, it's entertaining, and going to friends' holiday gatherings. As a work-at-home mom, I'm at home most of the time, give or take some rehearsals, meetings, volunteering, and church, plus the general running around town. My opportunities to get out there and socialize are at a minimum, because I have a hardworking hubby, who sometimes works in the evenings, and because well, when you have little ones, that's sort of the way it has to be. When the holiday party invites start rolling in, I start geting excited, and see it as an opportunity to get a little dressy casual.

Friend and MBP Spotlight Sponsor, Stephanie Ezzo, an Independent Consultant for Paparazzi Accessories, wanted to make sure I looked and felt like a million bucks as I head out the door this holiday season. Paparazzi Accessories is a neat company, offering $5.00 (yes- you read that right!) accessories. No single piece of jewelry or accessory is more than $5.00! I've worked with Stephanie before, and so have our other lovely review team members here at MBP, and we've all been beyond thrilled with the pieces Steph has sent to us in the past. I knew that I would be in for a little holiday treat this month!

My Paparazzi Jewelry is here!

Steph sent me a really pretty gift box, keeping my new Paparazzi Accessories jewelry safe and sound. I couldn't wait to see which piece she chose for me, so I hurried to open up the box to take a little peek!

Stephanie made sure to include her business card, which I appreciated!

My Paparazzi Accessories jewelry was in a pretty little pink drawstring bag...

Oval Ring Necklace and Earrings Set with Clear 'Diamonds'

I loved this funky necklace and earrings set right off the bat! It's unlike anything else I own, which is awesome, because I tend to not buy things because they're a little out of my style comfort zone. This glam necklace features nine ovals, each with a small metal circle, holding a clear stone. The fishhook earrings are a perfect match. I love that Steph knows that I am a silver girl, so thanks, Steph- for sending me a piece you knew I'd love to wear! 

Instant boost- both to my outfit, and my spirits!

Though this could be worn with just about anything, I have to tell you- it absolutely dresses up an otherwise casual outfit. I was sort of 'bumming' around the house (not feeling so well) the first time I wore this set, and just had on some skinny jeans, a black cami and a long length open front sweater. As soon as I put the Paparazzi Accessories necklace and earrings set, my drab outfit was transformed into something I would have been proud to wear out to a holiday event! I was instantly feeling better, too, because I looked nice.

I love, love, love this necklace! Sits in just the right spot- but can be shortened or lengthened.

The matching earrings are a must-see! They sparkle and shine!

This jewelry set from Paparazzi Accessories is one your friends will all want to borrow, or know where you got it from! The necklace is a nice weight- not too heavy, and not super light, either. The earrings are perfect for me, because I love fishhook earrings. and I barely even notice that they're there while wearing them.

For just $5.00, I can shop for all of the girls on my list, and then some!
Check out some of the other great pieces that Stephanie has available right now from Paparazzi Accessories!

Long Silver Beaded Neacklace w/Matching Earrings

Short Brass Colored Necklace w/Matching Earrings

Stretchy Charm Bracelet

Starlet Shimmer Kids Earrings

I know a few gals in my family who'd love to get some $5.00 jewelry from Paparazzi Accessories in their Christmas stockings this year! Heading out to those holiday parties and need an inexpensive 'secret santa' gift? Stock up now, because orders over $25.00 ship for free! Stephanie has lots of great sets and individual pieces to choose from, so check her website for the latest stock, and place your order with her! Add a little holiday sparkle to your own collection of accessories, or share with your friends!

Want It? Buy It!

You can purchase all of the above feature accessories on Stephanie's Accessories website, which features jewelry from Paparazzi Accessories, plus a few other pretty finds! Interested in learning more about Paparazzi Accessories? Steph would be glad to fill you in on the Paparazzi opportunity! Ask away! Be sure to like Stephanie's Accessories on Facebook to catch fun stuff like Trivia Tuesdays, and style tips, too!

Want It? Win It!

One lucky reader will win the very same set of jewelry from Paparazzi Accessorie's that I receieved and reviewed! Isn't Steph awesome for offering this!? We sure think so! Just use the rafflecopter entry form below to enter for your chance to win!

Special thanks to Stephanie Ezzo for sending me this pretty little set, and offering this dazzling holiday giveaway for our readers! 

Good luck!

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Disclosure: Other than the above mentioned products, which I received directly from this sponsor for review purposes, I was not compensated for facilitating this review. All opinions expressed are my own. Your experience may differ. Mommy's Block Party and its team members are not responsible for prize fulfillment or shipment- this is the understood responsibility of the giveaway sponsor.