SV Moms Group Event

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I didn’t realize how big that graphic turned out until I uploaded it but I had to include all the fabulous pictures taken by Carla from www.babyjidesign.com!

Last weekend I was invited to a special event hosted by the  SV Moms Group,  an organization that owns and operates regional blogs across the US dedicated to real woman sharing the ups and downs and everyday humor of motherhood.    And, can you guess which region is going to be launched next?  Yep, Orange County, which will be called Orange County Moms Blog!  Stay tuned for the announcement when the site is officially launched.

This group invited bloggers from the Los Angeles Moms Blog and local OC mom bloggers to escape on a Sunday afternoon in a REAL outfit to mingle with fabulous family-friendly companies at the gorgeous Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel.

If you have never been to the Ritz in Laguna, it is simply is breathtaking.   If you are looking for a fun date night experience, consider taking your hubby to their upscale wine tasting room, Eno, for a romantic date night filled with wine, cheese and chocolate. What could be better than that?

The event started with two incredible sessions led by two highly influential bloggers.  The Go To Mom, Kimberley Clayton Blaine, spoke on vlogging (video blogging for those of you not familiar with the term!) and the very Momfluential Ciaran Blumenfeld discussed branding and other important topics facing bloggers at the moment.

Then we headed into the oceanfront ballroom to meet the companies, all of which have products to benefit women and families. We were given free products, coupons or samples  and learned more about how  their products might benefit our readers. I left super excited because of all the great blogging material and things to share!  Here is a brief synopsis with more blogs to come…

Bit Defender * who helped co-sponsor the event is a company that provides internet security software to protect families online including separate profiles you can set up for each family member to restrict sites, hours and keep an eye on the activity.

Stride Rite * * showcased their new eco-friendly line of Robeez and new Jessica Simpson styles amongst others and Cinnabon * * debuted their ever-so-cute and yummy CUPCAKES (I had the 24-carrot – delicious!)

Did you know if you sign up for free with a company called Ebates, you can get money back for shopping online at places you probably already shop??  There are 1,200 to choose from…

Thanks a latte to Bosch Appliances who showcased their TASSIMO single-cup beverage maker.  I had a chai latte and it was fab.  Each individual serving is barcoded so the machine knows exactly the right time and temp to brew. Come 3pm when all I need is one cup, all I can say is “Tassimo-time!”

The iGo Green * charge anywhere device by iGo had me yell “THIS IS BRILLIANT!”  For real. It’s a mobile charger that can charge two devices and charge in the wall or on the go.  Green and brilliant.  I have used it nonstop since the event.

Then I happened upon the Litl’s.  The Litl computer that is.  Normally I wouldn’t use the word “cute” to describe a computer, but it is! You can even fold it over to sit in a triangle on your kitchen counter while you read a recipe.  Perfect for kitchen-counter browsing.

I sampled Stonyfield Oikos Organic Greek Yogurt so good I am topping it with fresh fruit and going to pull it off as dessert in our house and also got a sample of yummy natural goodies from Whole Foods.

We were introduced to a trailer for the movie “Babies” which opens on Mother’s Day and follows four babies for their first year of life in four different parts of the world.  Because really, who doesn’t love babies??

Then there were the Taga Bikes.  Although “bike” is really too simple of a word for these vehicles!  It’s a European design that is everything from a bicycle to a stroller to a double stroller to a shopping cart all in one.

Skechers USA was there with their Shape Ups *, a shoe that helps you get in shape and tone as you walk. Yes, please!   And a product called Bootights which are tights made to be worn with boots so they don’t slip.  Brilliant.

Pretend City * * was there (see yesterday’s post for more details!) and we sampled yummy fruit cups from Dole, a snack staple already around here.

Erba Organics *,which sells natural organic products for mommies and babies gave us samples to try.  I am thrilled because I really am trying to make the transition to organic bath and body products for my little ones.

There was a great family organizer by Busy Body Books * and invitations by Pose Prints *, where you can personalize the caricature to actually LOOK like you (or your child!) Super cute idea!

Ju-Ju-Be * was on display with their smart bags for smart people…diaper bags, lunch bags, tote bags, you name it. Stylish and functional.

We learned that Joseph’s Rugs in Tustin offers a FREE service called “The Rug Consultant” where an interior designer will help you choose an area rug perfect for your space.

Pop Cap * is a company that offers downloadable video games.   And lastly Eden’s Fantasy’s * provided a take home gift.  Enough said on that one!

You can click HERE to download more pictures on Whrrl, another event sponsor.

I would like to extend a very, very heartfelt thank you to SV Moms Group and the amazing sponsors for an event to remember!  Happy weekend everyone!   See you on Monday!

{Congratulations to Debbie C. the winner of the aden + anais Cozy Slumber Sleeping Bag giveaway!}

{Companies noted with an * above provided a free product and ** provided a coupon}

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Pretend City Good to Go from Head to Toe

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I had the opportunity to visit Pretend City in Irvine a few weeks back and learn more about their Good to Go From Head to Toe program.   My daughter was in preschool, so I couldn’t bring her along.  All I kept thinking the entire time was how she would go absolutely, positively, undeniably crazy for Pretend City.

For those of you who have not visited yet, it is a hands-on children’s museum built solely around an entire “pretend city.”  There’s a Ralph’s Fresh Fare, art studio, beach, bank, doctor’s office, gas station and the list goes on and on.  Children can explore and play and pretend to the extent of their wildest imaginations. It is simply a child’s wonderland! And, great for all ages, from the newest of walkers up to grade school.  For admission & hours click HERE.

Good to Go from Head to Toe!

Pretend City has recently launched The Good To Go from Head To Toe initiative which aims to increase awareness about healthy child development through play and empower parents with knowledge about their child’s development from birth to age 5.

Play with a purpose!

Way to Play days take place the second Friday of every month at Pretend City.   On Way to Play days, community partners will be on-site at the museum to offer parents and caretakers free resources and services that promote the healthy development of children.

Yippee!  I have a Pretend City coupon to offer you!  Click HERE to print a Pretend City coupon for 2-for-1 admission on Way to Play days!  Such a deal and a great day to visit so you can take advantage of this amazing program.

Family Fun & Wellness Fair
Saturday, March 13th, 2010
10am – 4pm

Pretend City is hosting  an event for the entire family next month and it is totally FREE! There will be tons of activities like free language, dental, vision and speech screenings, arts and crafts, an appearance by the Anaheim Ducks mascot and much, much more…

Plus, each child who participates in the activities and screenings will receive one free admission to Pretend City on the day of the fair. Click HERE to download a flyer on this fun event!

Pretend City
29 Hubble
Irvine, CA
949.428.3900
www.begood2go.org

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Wordless Wednesday – Nothing better to a kid…

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…than a trampoline.  Special thanks to Maya for the bouncy fun play date.  For more Wordless Wednesday pictures, head on over to Angry Julie Monday!

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We Love Sophie the Giraffe

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I am slowly making my way through the list of My Top 10 Most Used Baby Items and seeing that I currently have a 7 1/2 month old silly grinning two-toothed baby with more on the way, I have to  include Sophie, the wondrous teether toy!  So, this will have to be my #5 pick!

I was first  introduced to Sophie the Giraffe when I received it as a shower gift for my first baby.   Being a clueless mom-to-be I didn’t really understand the reaction when seasoned moms in the room erupted in a collective outburst of excitement about how much they LOVED their Sophies.   I looked at the little rubber, rosy cheeked giraffe and didn’t get it.  Yet.

Fast forward 6 months later and seeing my little teething baby gnaw with such joy on her Sophie, I finally got it.   And, I got how you can justify spending roughly $23 on a teething toy.

My friend Jenny got Morgan her very own Sophie the Giraffe as a baby gift and it is her favorite.  I don’t know what it is about that giraffe, but she possesses a magical quality of fun and function.  Pick one up as a gift and you are sure to give one of their most used baby items!

{If you consider buying online at Land of Nod Tiny Oranges is an Affiliate – Click HERE for the product link!}

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Lido Island Playground

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lido-park

If you live close to Newport Beach, this is a great little park on Lido Island we love to visit.   It is at the intersection of Via Lido Nord & Via Genoa.  Click HERE for a map.

It’s a small community park, no restrooms, but right on the bay with a beautiful view.   We have gone on the weekdays, and there has always been plenty of street parking.

The park is on the sand, and my daughter loves the 70’s style merry-go-round.  Hard to find those anymore!  Being on sand makes for a good landing in case anyone takes a spill!

There is also a teeter totter, swings and a nice structure with slides.  Bring your pails and buckets for sand play as well.

Make sure to use the potty before going and the sign says “no picnicking” so it more of a quick stop by sort of park.   But it is a little gem, and one of our faves!

Congratulations to the Hot Mama Designs Jewelry Giveaway Winner…NICOLE…who’s “Be” necklace would say

“Be Strong”!

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