Living carless in Brooklyn has its perks. We save tons on gas and parking, and I get great exercise pushing 3 kids in a stroller 4 miles a day! But sometimes, it's nice to have a car. Really really nice!!
While planning our recent family vacation (stay tuned for my Lancaster Getaway Guide!), I reached out to DriveShop to borrow a car for our road trip. I told them I needed a car that could fit our family of 5 (including 3 kids in car seats) as well as our luggage and a double stroller. Their recommendation? The Mazda CX-9. And after spending the better part of the last week with it, I can say in full honesty that it is an AWESOME car and I can't recommend it highly enough for large families such as ours. Keep reading for some of the features we fell in love with!!
7 SEATER SUV & LARGE TRUNK
The 2017 Mazda CX-9 is a seven passenger SUV: driver and passenger in the front row bucket seats, 3 seats across in the second row, and 2 seats in the third back row - all 7 seats have 3-point seat belts. The back row doesn't have as much leg room, so I really wouldn't recommend using it on a regular basis for adults, but it would be a good spot for 1 or 2 car seats or older kids. We chose instead to fold the back row down (really quick and easy - you can fold down one or both seats!!) to create a huge trunk space that had no problem fitting our large suitcase, double wide stroller, and tons of other "necessities" for our trip.
Related Article: The BEST Double Umbrella Stroller - Joovy TwinGroove Ultralight
FITS 3 CAR SEATS ACROSS
In the second row, we were able to fit 3 kids across using two Combi Coccoro car seats on each side for our toddler twins (using the easy LATCH system), and our 4 year old in the middle in his RideSafer Travel Vest. Specs say 57.4" hip room in the second row, so if you have car seats that are under 19" wide each, you should be able to fit 3 across. For example, 3 Clek Foonfs or Diono Radians or Combi Coccoros should be an easy fit.
Related Article: How to Ride Safe without a Big Bulky Car Seat
INFOTAINMENT SCREEN & 2 USB INPUTS
There are 2 USB inputs in the middle front arm rest console - we found these really handy for charging our phones on the go! It even worked to have a phone plugged in while sitting up on the dash so we could use our phone's GPS!
There's also a large screen in the center of the dash you can control via touch screen or with dials between the driver and passenger. We mainly used it for XM radio and the backup assist video camera.
3 ZONE CLIMAGE CONTROL
This was great as we could control left, right, and back to be different temperatures. However, my son quickly found out he could control his temperature with his foot by kicking in front of him... he kept turning the heat up to the 80s and then screaming out "HOT HOT HOT!!!!!!" hahahaha. There's probably a way to lock it, but we never took the time to figure it out... definitely something you'll want to figure out if you'll have a child in the middle seat!
KEYLESS ENTRY & START
When you're carrying a sleeping child and a diaper bag, the last thing you want to do is dig through your bag to find your car keys. I can now speak from experience. If you have the key in your bag, you simply open the door - it unlocks for you. So freaking amazing!!! Once you have everyone in the car and buckled in, just start the car with the push of the button, leave the keys lost in the bottom of your diaper bag!!
So, a pretty amazing car!! A fabulous seven passenger SUV and a great option for families of 4 - 7!! MSRP starts at $31,520 and it averages around 24 miles per gallon. You can read more about the CX-9 on Mazda's website.
Suffice it to say, we are in love. We were not planning on buying a car, and it won't be happening in the near future, but driving this puppy around really got us talking about it. Having a car that easily fits the whole family and all of your, ahem, stuff, sure can make life easier!!
Do you have a Mazda CX-9 or have you taken one for a spin? Do you have a car you recommend for large families?? Leave a comment below, I'd love to hear your thoughts and advice!!
Disclaimer: I'm no sellout guys! Though I was provided this car by DriveShop for a week in exchange for my honest review, all thoughts and opinions are my own and completely unbiased.
What if I told you there was just ONE sunscreen you needed for your entire family. Would you believe me? Would you jump for joy?? Well, get ready, cuz it is true (in my humble opinion anyway). The best sunscreen for babies, the best sunscreen for kids, the best sunscreen for faces and bodies, young and old, parents and kids is, drumroll please, THINKBABY!!!
Though Thinkbaby sponsored this post and has donated a bundle of sunscreen (pictured below) to my $360 value jackpot Summer Goodies for the Kiddies Giveaway (enter through link at the bottom of this post to enter to win!!), I gotta tell you, my family has been using and loving Thinkbaby for over a year now. My reviews are always unbiased, but this is one of the few times where I've actually already been using and loving the product before working with the brand! I reached out to them because they are my hands down favorite sunscreen for our entire family, and I just had to get them in my summer must-haves giveaway!
Why do I love Thinkbaby? I'll tell ya!!
What is the difference between Thinkbaby, Thinksport for Kids, and Thinksport?
This question comes up a lot in my mommy circles and I'm happy to say I've finally gotten an answer!! I asked their rep and the quick answer is, pretty much nothing! It's all to do with marketing, really. "Baby" and "Kids" are the exact same lotion - same formula and scent, just in different packaging because they thought bigger kids wouldn't want to read "baby" on their sunscreen! HA!!! "Sport" is the exact same formula as the other two, just having a different scent - it's grapefruit & currant whereas "Baby" and "Kids" are papaya.
I received their brand new product to try out, the Thinksport for Kids Face & Body Stick. Now, I've never used a stick sunscreen before, so I wasn't sure what to expect. I mean, it looks like a mini deodorant to me, ha!! But, after trying it out, I can see the appeal. It's still creamy but a dryer application than the lotion, which could mean way less mess, especially if letting your kids lather themselves up. I took a before and after pic (below) so you could get an idea of the consistency. I think it's a cool option, but personally, I'm a sunscreen purist and will probably "stick" to the traditional lotion (pun intended), which is a higher SPF anyway. That said, when ready to hand over sunscreening duty to the kids, I'll be circling back around to this stick (they also have stick format for Thinkbaby and Thinksport).
You can find the entire line of Thinkbaby / Kids / Sport as well as their body care products, baby bottles, sippy and straw bottles, feeding and travel containers on their website and Amazon. The sunscreens go for about $13 (3oz) or $23 (6oz) and $9 for the new sticks. But don't forget, you can enter to win a 3-pack in my $360 value jackpot Summer Goodies for the Kiddies Giveaway!!
Disclaimer: I'm no sellout guys! Though I was compensated and sent complimentary products for my honest review, all thoughts and opinions are my own and completely unbiased.
I have been a huge fan of i play.'s swim diapers and kids swimwear for a few years now, basically since my first baby's first summer, so I couldn't be more excited to be working with them on this review! They're also including a great kids' swim set (rash guard, swim diapers, & sun hat) in my $360 value Summer Goodies for the Kiddies Giveaway!! Keep reading for my review of a few i play. items, and enter to win through the link at the bottom of the post!
Being a city family without a washing machine, I'm just not up for cloth diapering my kiddos. But for the pool, beach and playground sprinklers, I never even considered disposable swim diapers. They just seem like such a waste to me! A better alternative? i play.'s reusable swim diapers are practical, adorable, and will actually save you money! They are so cute they're all you need - no swimsuit over them necessary (or you can buy an i play. one-piece swim suit or boys' swim trunks with built in swim diaper)!! Most have snaps on the side which make for easy changing (especially if there's a #2 incident, which thankfully none of my kids have ever done in their swim diapers, knock on wood!!!). Just take a look at some of the adorable designs they have to choose from!!
Now, if your kids are like mine, they do NOT like sitting through a sunblock smearing session. Of course, it's a necessary evil, and with an awesome sunblock such as Thinkbaby (also in the huge giveaway linked at bottom) it's not so bad, but still... the more skin you can get covered in UPF swimwear, the better!! That's why I love all of the adorable mix and match options by i play. - you got short sleeve and long sleeve rash guards, several types of sun hats (wide brim, bucket, and neck flap), elbow to knee body suits, and bathing suits and swim trunks with built in swim diapers!! They've also got two types of water-safe shoes! Check out some of the cute outfits I put together here:
Below you can see my twins rocking their coordinating sets from i play. while on vacation this past weekend! Emi (on left) is wearing the Butterfly Brim Sun Protection Hat, Butterfly Reusable Ruffle Snap Swimsuit Diaper and Hot Pink Short Sleeve Rashguard. Mia (on right) is wearing the Butterfly Brim Sun Protection Hat and Butterfly One-Piece Ruffle Swimsuit with built in swim diaper. Mia is our stinker, who will not keep her bottoms on and has to be in a snapped onesie at all times in order to keep her diaper on! So, it was an easy call to put her in the one-piece LOL!!
I find them true to size - my girls are 19 months wearing 18 months items and all fit perfectly! They might not last til the end of the summer though, if they have a growth spurt, so keep that in mind when shopping - you may want to buy the correct size or size up to get more use out of it. My girls loved the outfits - no complaints or red marks from irritation.
i play. is the original swim diaper manufacturer and has been perfecting the product for over 20 years!! Their snug fitting elastic leg and waist bands keep baby comfortable and keep the water and fellow swimmers safe. As I mentioned above, we've thankfully never been able to test out how well the swim diapers contain a poop, but supposedly they do well, and oh yeah, they're machine washable!!
The diapers are really thick and take a while to dry, and they say do not tumble dry, so if you're going on vacation where you'll be in the water multiple times a day you may consider at least 2 pairs. Also, it's fun to change the style up a bit, right!??
I love these brim hats - they're huge with great sun protection and they stay out of their faces! I did find them a bit hard to tie due to wriggly toddlers not wanting to sit still while giving me access to their ticklish necks, but I was able to get them tied without too much drama haha!! And then they stayed in place great, much better than the velcro strapped ones we've tried before, which never seem to fit quite right anyway.
You can shop all of i play.'s awesome kids sun and swimwear on their webiste, and don't forget, you can win a set in my $360 value jackpot Summer Goodies for the Kiddies Giveaway, which includes sublock, water sandals, a beach tent, and more!!
Disclaimer: I'm no sellout guys! Though I was compensated and sent complimentary products for my honest review, all thoughts and opinions are my own and completely unbiased.
So happy to be helping promote another great giveaway by Peace, Love & Literacy! She's put together an amazing "Farmer's Market Giveaway" with a jackpot full of great games and activities to help your child learn about important concepts such as healthy food choices, seasonal foods, wants vs. needs, basic numeracy, social interactions and language, community topics, entrepreneurial concepts, and even public & customer service.
One very lucky winner will receive the following DIY Farmer’s Market bundle:
Enter to win in the rafflecopter box below, and next head over to enter to win my $360 value jackpot "Summer Goodies for the Kiddies Giveaway" (ending May 31)!!
Summer is here, folks!! Have you gotten your kids their warm weather and water-safe footwear yet? With a 4 year old and 1.5 year old twins, I look for closed-toe sandals that stay on securely and allow for all the climbing, jumping, and splashing around their little hearts can desire. After doing some research, I reached out to pediped to try out what appeared to me to be the perfect children's sandals. Luckily, I was right, they're awesome!! Keep reading for my review of the pediped Flex Sahara sandals (and enter to win a pair of pediped sandals in my $360 value Summer Goodies for the Kiddies Giveaway linked at the bottom!)
We have been huge pediped fans for a couple of years now (you can see my previous reviews on their Originals Natasha Mary Janes, Grip 'n Go Max Sneakers, and Flex Norm Loafers). They always knock it out of the park on quality and cuteness, and put a parent's mind at ease having received the American Podiatric Medical Association Seal of Acceptance for the promotion of healthy foot development.
The pediped Flex Sahara sandals are no exception, and are amazing summer shoes for a number of reasons, here are the features I'm loving most:
My kids have gotten a few wears out of them already at the park and sprinklers, and I was very happy to not see even the slightest bit of irritation on any of their feet, ankles, or toes (which is not the case when they wear some of their other shoes without socks), and no slipping even while running around in the sprinklers at the playground! I'm loving the performance of the shoes, they really are like sneakers in regard to how active the kids can be in them, and I also love how many colors they come in (see below!), though it makes it really hard to pick out just one pair...
pediped Flex Sahara sandals come in sizes EU 20 (US 5) - EU 33 (Y 1.5-2) and go for about $53 on their website or Amazon (affiliate link). But don't forget, you can enter to win a pair of ANY of pediped sandals (they have tons of other styles - water safe, dressy, you name it) in my Summer Goodies for the Kiddies Giveaway, ending May 31!
Disclaimer: I'm no sellout guys! Though I was sent these products free of charge for my honest review, thoughts and opinions are my own and completely unbiased.
I recently attended my FIFTH New York Baby Show in a row (courtesy of MomTrends / #MTBloggerLounge - thank you!!), and as usual, I was blown away. They changed the location this year, which gave it a slightly different feel, but it was as amazing as ever!! It's the biggest expo of its kind (with over 200 brands and 5000 families in attendance), and always a fabulous way to check out the best baby products as well as great gear for maternity, toddlers, and families! It's fun to see the products first hand, try them out, and get your questions answered quickly by their friendly reps. Keep reading to see which products I was most impressed with this year, and don't miss my video at the bottom! I'll also include links at the bottom of the post to my recaps from past years, since the products highlighted in those old posts are definitely still worth checking out!!
#1 Pick : RideSafer Travel Vest
~ Best for Taxis & Travel ~
The RideSafer Travel Vest is an alternative to the traditional car seat (go here for my full review) and I gotta say, it's awesome. While it's not necessarily meant to be your go-to car seat for daily use, it is extremely convenient for a number of situations such as taking along on vacation for use in taxis or rental cars, using for car pool, and for city families such as mine who don't have a car nor have the space to store a few car seats for use a few times a year! They're for kids ages 3 and up, 30 - 80 pounds, and run for about $139 - $169 on their website and Amazon (affiliate link), though it can be confusing on Amazon since there are 4 generations and various vest types, the biggest difference being that the newest generation vest can be used in a lap belt only seat (with a tether).
#2 Pick : Lascal BuggyBoard Maxi+
~ Best for Big Sibling ~
Lascal's BuggyBoard has been an uber popular universal stroller board for some time, but the newly released Maxi+ gives your child the option to stand or sit!! We got one a couple of months ago (check out my review here) and are using it every day and absolutely loving it. I push our toddler twins in our double stroller 4 miles a day to drop off and pick up my 4 year old from preschool. The board latches up and out of my way when he's not with us or chooses to walk, drops down quickly for him to ride standing, and I keep the little saddle board under the stroller and snap in easily if he needs to sit. In my honest opinion, it's the best toddler board on the market!! You can find one for about $150 on Regal Lager's website or Amazon (affiliate link).
# 3 Pick : Bento Box by Stuck on You
~ Best for School (Day Care & Travel) ~
Not only are these bento box style lunch boxes super cute and customizable, they are amazingly practicle. The removeable plastic tray divides each section so your various foods don't mix, and when the top comes down, each section is sealed tight. Completely sealed!! See that circular area in the middle? You can even put a liquid sauce in there and it won't leak!! The large personalized bento box runs for about $35 on their website, but they have tons of other great products as well, all personalized, from backpacks to pencil cases and clothes!! I was totally blown away by the bento boxes and will be reaching out to Stuck on You to review one soon (my son will be starting Kindergarten in September) and hopefully get an assortment of their goods in my Back to School Giveaway at the end of July!!
Rain Cover & Console by Guzzie & Guss
~ Best Stroller Accessories ~
Guzzie & Guss had a number of amazing products at the show and there were two that especially piqued my interest. Their 3-in-1 Rain Cover is the only cover I've ever seen that is 100% see through, fitted, AND has a zip open front (meaning you don't have to take the whole thing off to get your child in and out. What's more? It fits car seat, bassinet, and pod-style stroller seat (the kind of seat that clicks in and out and reverses). How amazingly versatile!! The other cool stroller accessory they had was the Stroller Media Console, which is probably a bit controversial - screen time and all that - so take it or leave it, but it's got a slot for your child to watch or play with a tablet, and on the reverse side a spot for your smart phone. Also insulated cup holders and magnetic pocket. I mean, come on, they thought of everything here!! You can check out these and other Guzzie & Guss products on their website and Amazon (affiliate link).
Related article: Review of Manito Double & Single Stroller Covers
My Size Potty by Summer Infant
~ Best in Potty Training ~
With potty training our 2nd and 3rd kids on the near horizon, this potty stopped me in my tracks. It's SO. DARN. CUTE!!! Not only is it more aesthetically pleasing for the parents, it's cool for the kids cuz they can feel grown up using a potty that looks like the one mom and dad use, but it's their size. It's also practical - there's a built-in wipes dispenser, the handle makes a flushing sound, the seat lifts like a real potty, there's a clip-on extra splash guard for boys, and of course the bowl removes for easy cleaning! I gotta get me a couple of these ASAP (we're about to be FIVE people sharing ONE toilet - yikes!!). It runs for $35 on Summer Infant's website and Amazon (affiliate link).
Evolution Pro 2 XL by Kiddy
~ Most Innovative Infant Car Seat ~
I don't know about you, but seeing my baby fall asleep in the car seat with their head hanging forward, it just doesn't feel right. Not only does it look uncomfortable, it seems unsafe. I guess I'm not alone having these concerns - Kiddy has come out with the only infant car seat with a lie flat function that operates both in and out of the car!! Simply by pushing the handle back, it goes from upright to lie flat, and can be used in the car as well as in the Kiddy stroller!! Ah-may-zing!! These are scheduled to be on the market in July/August 2017, so stay tuned (they're listed for around $470 at BuyBuyBaby but not in stock yet).
B-Sensible Waterproof Fitted Sheets
~ Best in Bedding ~
Gone are the days that you have to use a hot and crinkly waterproof mattress pad. Say hello to B-Sensible waterproof fitted sheets!! Looking and feeling like regular sheets, they feature Tencel fabric (I'm told it's from the eucalyptus plant), which is naturally waterproof, hypoallergenic, breathable, and easy to care for. Check out the above images - they're filled with water and not even damp on the outside!! B-Sensible fitted sheets come in all sizes, we're talking play yard, crib, twin, full, queen, and king, and they make waterproof pillow cases, as well! Check 'em out on their website and Amazon (affiliate link).
MonBaby Smart Baby Monitor
~ Top in Tech ~
For parents who don't find enough comfort in a run of the mill baby monitor, or perhaps have an infant with higher risks, MonBaby is a wearable device that keeps track of baby's breathing and movement and even sends you alerts on your phone and other devices, for example, if your baby ends up flipping onto his or her tummy or isn't breathing steadily. It can also help you keep better track of their sleep cycles and other helpful stats. Not just for newborns either, it can also alert you when your crawling or climbing little one has left the designated area or has had a fall. It goes for about $100 on their website and Amazon (affiliate link).
~ Best for Preemies & Eczema ~
Goumikids makes great infant wear - sleepers with built in mitts and footies that can fold on or off, booties that will resist being pulled off, hats, and more! But what really caught my eye were their velcro secured mitts - great to keep newborns from accidentally scratching themselves but get this - they consulted with NICU specialists and apparently it's a huge problem that preemies and newborns accidentally pull out their tubing. So, Goumikids came out with preemie size mitts as a solution! You can find their products on their website and Amazon (affiliate link). They also partner with some amazing charities, gotta love that!
~ Best Swaddle ~
It's not a brand new swaddle, we actually were gifted a pair from our baby registry and used them on our twins over a year ago (pictured above)! They've since redesigned with improvements and come out with a ton more designs and materials! But the stand out features remain - embé swaddles are so unique because you can swaddle with legs in or out (with the latter being great in the summer, and also for babies wearing braces for hip dysplasia)!! They also zip closed under the velcro swaddle, so they're Houdini proof. They go for about $30 a piece on their website and Amazon (affiliate link).
ergoPouch Sleep Suit Bags
~ Best Wearable Blanket ~
A wearable blanket that converts from sleep sack to legs with grippy feet, I mean, wow ergoPouch, well done!! Not only are they great for babies and early walkers, but they also make it possible to move child from the crib to stroller without having to take off the sleep sack!! They've got short sleeve and long sleeve versions, with Tog ranging from 1 to 3.5. They go for about $60 on their website and Amazon (affiliate link).
Dream Belt by Babymoov
~ Best for Bump ~
It doesn't seem to be on the market in the States just yet, at least not on Amazon or on Babymoov's US website, but will likely be soon. I found sleeping in my third trimester (with 1 baby and even more so with the twins) really difficult and painful. Dream Belt offers support as well as memory foam padding for your hips. I'm really intrigued to see if this actually works well, alas I will not be able to test it out myself as I'm donezo with pregnancy... knock on wood...
Here's my YouTube version of this blog post, me and my girls go over the above products and demo a few!
So, what do you think!? Are you blown away by any of the above products? Do you have some? Are you planning to buy any? Leave a comment below and don't forget to check out my favorite product lists from the past 2 years here:
2016 New York Baby Show Highlights
2015 New York Baby Show Highlights
Also, don't miss out - enter to win my $360 value jackpot Summer Goodies for the Kiddies Giveaway running through May 31!!! One winner will take it all - the best in summer gear for kids and families - from swim suits and water sandals to beach tent and sunblock!! Enter to win here!!
Disclaimer: Although I was compensated to attend and write about my favorite products from the show, all thoughts and opinions are my own and completely unbiased!
We're advised to not use sunscreen on babies under 6 months, to avoid any tanning or burning on children under 2 years, and to carefully protect the skin from sun damage on everyone else young and old. It seems like an overwhelming task, but thankfully we have several great options. Cover up with UPF clothing, hats and sunglasses, wear a great sunscreen, and stay in the shade as much as possible. For kids in the stroller, a large canopy and/or stroller shade can be extremely helpful. And for those spending extended amounts of time in a sunny spot on the beach, at the park, at the soccer field, or even in your own backyard, a beach tent can be a great option!
Many of the above items are in the jackpot of the $360 value Summer Goodies for the Kiddies Giveaway! Link at bottom to enter, but keep reading for my review of the great beach tent we just received!
The Pacific Breeze Sand & Surf Beach Shelter is small and lightweight for toting around, easy to set up, and provides a huge shaded space, making it a great accessory for any trip to the beach, park, or backyard barbecue! Check out my quick video below of us using it for a great day at the park:
The tent comes with one side built in and a second side you can add on, meaning you can be shaded from the sun while also staying cool in the breeze. Speaking of breeze, we found it does fairly well staying put on its own, and personally I prefer simply throwing a water bottle or something heavy in each corner if the breeze threatens to blow it away. It does come with built in sand bags (sand not included) and stakes, if you find it needs more help on a windy day.
It folds down to 39" long and fits into a nice carry bag (which contains a built in sheet with set up / take down instructions), however the strap is quite thin and it does weigh 9 pounds, so carrying on a bare tank topped shoulder is not the most comfortable. You may want to put a towel on your shoulder underneath the carry strap, or simply throw it on top of your stroller (or husband, shown below, ha!)
The beach shelter is 94.5" L x 94.5" D x 59" H, comfortably fitting 4 adults. It's a great size!! The water-resistant floor does zip off so you can clean it easily, or use it without the base, for example if you wanted to put the cover over a baby pool or want to let kids play in the sand under the shade.
You can find the Pacific Breeze Sand & Surf Beach Shelter available on Amazon for about $120, and you can enter to win one in my $360 value Summer Goodies for the Kiddies Giveaway running on my blog through May 31 here!!
One thing to note is that some parks and beaches may prohibit use of erectable tents and structures. Please be sure to check the policies of any places you're planning to take, NYC public pools and beaches it seems, for the most part, do not allow these, which is a big bummer!!
Disclaimer: I'm no sellout guys! Though I was sent this product free of charge for my honest review, thoughts and opinions are my own and completely unbiased.
I've been really into organizing these seasonal giveaways lately (check out my last Winter and Spring ones!) - such a fun way to work with some great brands to introduce you all to amazing products and of course, provide a HUGE JACKPOT OF GOODIES to one very lucky winner!!
With summer on the horizon, I'm at it again, bringing you $360 in products I think can help you have the best summer with your kids. Check out more info on each brand and their prizes below, and enter to win my SUMMER GOODIES FOR THE KIDDIES GIVEAWAY (#SGFTKGiveaway) in the Rafflecopter box at the bottom!! GOOD LUCK!!
Pacific Breeze Sand & Surf Beach Shelter (affiliate link)
If you're going to be spending extended amounts of time outside, a beach tent is definitely something to consider. It can protect you from sun and rain while letting the breeze through so you don't all roast alive! The Sand & Surf Beach Shelter by Pacific Breeze is a great option - it's really easy to setup and take down (see me in action here), is large enough to fit 4 people (94.5" L x 94.5" D x 59" H), packs down into a great shoulder strap travel bag (39" L x 7" W x 7" H), and weighs 9 pounds. It includes storage pockets, 4 stakes, an extra shade, and 8 sand pockets (sand not included LOL). Our grand prize winner will receive this great shelter (in blue). They run for around $120 on Amazon (affiliate link). Check out my full review here!
Offering adorable and comfortable kids shoes with a variety of features such as being waterproof, machine washable, vegan, memory foam, slip resistant, and eco friendly, it's no wonder pediped is a leading brand in children's footwear, receiving a number of awards including the American Podiatric Medical Association Seal of Acceptance for the promotion of healthy foot development. Our grand prize winner will receive one pair in their choice of size, style (any summer sandals), and gender. They run for around $40-$60 on pediped's website and Amazon (affiliate link). Check out my review of their Flex Sahara Sandals, and my previous reviews on their Originals Natasha Mary Janes, Grip 'n Go Max Sneakers, and Flex Norm Loafers.
If you haven't heard of Fitted Tot, you can check out my previous review here, but basically it's a "Netflix-style subscription for little ones", and it's awesome!! For $44.99 a month, you get unlimited boxes of clothes (each box includes 3 play, 1 dress outfit, and 1 pajama) - every time you return the box you'll get a new one, and you can purchase pieces you simply can't part with for 40-50% off retail price! Our grand prize winner will receive a 1-month Fitted Tot Subscription for 1 child.
With adorable swim diapers, rash guards, sun hats, and UPF elbow to knee swim suits, i play. is a one stop shop to outfit your baby or toddler for the beach, pool, or sprinklers! As the original swim diaper manufacturer, they've been providing great quality swim and sun wear for children for 20 years! Our grand prize winner will receive the water-friendly adorable i play. outfit pictured above (aqua short sleeve rashguard, white solid brim sun protection hat, and light aqua sea friends swim diaper, a $40 value!) - winner chooses sizes, available in 6 months to 4T! Check out my personal review here!
Thinkbaby & Thinksport Sunscreen (3-pack)
Did you know you don't have to get a bad sunburn to have sun damage, yes, even mild tanning can come back to haunt you and your children years down the road. Children under 6 months of age shouldn't be wearing sunscreen (keep them in the shade and/or in breathable UPF protective clothing), but after that, lather them up - with the understanding that what goes on their skin will make its way into their bodies... so be careful about ingredients!! Personally, I love Thinkbaby and I'm not alone. They're always ranked as a top pick on EWG's best and safest sunscreens, meaning they work well and consist of harmless ingredients for you, your kids, and the environment - phew!! They're also nice and creamy (easy to apply) and smell YUMMY! HA! Our grand prize winner will receive a 3-pack of their sunscreens: Thinkbaby, Thinksport for Kids, and the new Thinksport Kids Sunscreen Stick! Check back in later for my full review! Thinkbaby sunscreens, baby bottles, sippies, insulated bottles, and other products can be found on their website and on Amazon (affiliate link).
Britax and BOB make some of the best strollers, car seats, and accessories on the market today! Our grand prize winner will receive the Britax Car Seat Sun Shield, which will protect your car seat from harmful UV rays and keep it cool at the same time, so your child isn't accidentally scalded on a hot day!! It's universal, slipping easily onto any brand car seat, and stores compactly. You can find them for about $25 on Britax's website and Amazon (affiliate link).
Using sustainable materials & processes, low impact dyes, organic & recycled materials, certified factories, and fair trade practices, Art & Eden aims to bring you children's clothing you'll love, that are better for your kids and the planet. I love them for taking a stand and rejecting "industry without conscience" (see more here about all the things they're doing right) and for doing so without sacrificing fashion, comfort, and an affordable price tag! Our grand prize winner will be able to pick one of the following designs and sizes: Mini Beatrix Dress (pictured above 2nd from left; 3-24 months), Mini Kandinsky Tee (pictured above far left; 3-24 months), Judith Skirt (pictured above far right; 2T - 6), or Julian Tee (pictured above 2nd from right; 2T - 10), each valued between $20-29!
A good stroller canopy can only do so much in regard to shading your little one, and hanging blankets over the stroller can lead to overheating. Diono's Sun Net is a great way to completely shade your baby from those hot and harmful UV rays and also keep pesky mosquitos and other insects away! Made of a breathable mesh weave, it's elastic trim stretches to fit over just about any baby carrier or stroller with a canopy. Our grand prize winner will receive a white Sun Net, just like the one pictured above. You can find them on Amazon for around $5!
Amazing giveaway, am I right!?!?! Coordinated by US Japan Fam, this giveaway is sponsored by participating brands and open to US residents ages 18 and over. No purchase required to enter. Giveaway ends Wednesday, May 31 at 11:59 PM EDT - one winner will be randomly chosen and contacted through e-mail, and their name displayed on the giveaway page. Winner will have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen. US Japan Fam and participating blogs are not responsible for fulfilling brand-sponsored prizes. Prizes will be shipped directly from each brand.
**UPDATED 8/17/2017: Worldtots has been approved for FREE HALF-DAY UPK (8am - noon), and will be offering full day Pre-K (8am-4pm) for $350 / month.
When it comes time to get your child enrolled in an amazing preschool program, it seems there are just never enough seats available. We all rejoice when a new one opens up and are eager to learn about what it will offer our youngsters, so I'm thrilled to introduce you to a brand new one opening its doors soon here in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn: Worldtots!
Worldtots will be hosting a free seminar on New York City Kindergarten Admissions and Gifted & Talented Program on May 20 from 3-5pm, with a special presentation on NYC admissions process by Pamela Wheaton, Co-Founder of Insideschools. Register here, space is filling up fast!
Located at 6813 8th Avenue, Worldtots is a dual-language (Mandarin & English) preschool for ages 2-5 years old, aiming to develop global thinkers and prepare students for kindergarten and NYC's Gifted & Talented program. Encouraging play-based learning by utilizing carefully designed centers and activities, the curriculum is tailored to each age group and will cover academic areas of literacy, mathematics, social studies, science and technology, and the arts. Curious about the many benefits of an early bilingual education? Check this out!
Their Two's, Three's, and Four's classes will have a ratio of 4-6 students per teacher, all passionate and qualified experts in early childhood development!
Worldtots will open its doors in July for their "Little Traveler Summer Camp", offering full or half day, a length of 3 or 6 weeks (July 10 - August 18), with the options of early drop-off and extended day.
Want to learn more?? They have a series of Open Houses coming up (May 13, 20 & 21) - be sure to RSVP here to learn more and check out their facilities (which includes an organic garden in the backyard)!!
Disclaimer: I'm no sellout guys! Though I was compensated to write this post, thoughts and opinions are my own and completely unbiased.
With Mother's Day right around the corner, I wanted to do something special. I decided to put together a YouTube montage video and asked friends and followers to submit clips on anything at all related to motherhood or Mother's Day. I'm so so so happy with how it turned out - it's heart felt and fun, it'll make you cry, laugh, and probably want another baby!! HA!! Check it out here:
What do you think? Which comment hit home the most for you? What's your most memorable or disgusting mom moment? Leave a comment below (and don't forget to like and share the video)!!!
Huge shoutout to all the moms who opened up and contributed!! Check out their YouTube channels and blogs linked below:
About Me ^_^
I'm a NYC metro area mom blogger living in NJ with my Japanese husband & our 3 kids (twins plus 1). This blog is chock full of product reviews, family travel guides, and giveaways galore! It's also home to Bay Ridge Families, and several guides focused on kid-friendly activities and guides to South Brooklyn, Hudson Valley, and New Jersey, as well as family-friendly destinations beyond the NYC area (check the menu bar!)