May – 2016 – Frugal Novice
Monthly Archives

May 2016

Celebrating #Amazinghood with Dreft

This is a compensated post in partnership with Dreft. All opinions are honest and are my own.

As a mom of three kids, I’ve gone through my fair share of Dreft – and I’m betting all of you other moms out there can say the same thing. It’s always been my go-to detergent for my babies because of how gentle it is, and I recommend it to all my friends that are moms-to-be.

Parenthood and babyhood is messy, but those messy and imperfect moments are often the most memorable – don’t you agree? Thanks to Dreft, parents can embrace the mess of #amazinghood. Dreft celebrates babies and parenting and, well, the #amazinghood of motherhood. I got the chance to host a gathering with a couple of my mom friends recently to talk about what we think the most amazing part of motherhood is – and I got to share Dreft goodies with them, too.

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My friend Aimee said she thinks the most amazing part of being a parent is watching her kids play pretend, and seeing where their imaginations take them. Sarah said she loves watching her kids grow into their personalities. I love seeing my kids do things for others without being prompted – seeing kindness and thoughtfulness in them really makes me feel like I’m doing my job as a parent!

It was great to get together and chat about parenting, and I got some fun pink snacks to enjoy, too.

Prepping for my @dreft party – so fun! #Amazinghood #motherhood #baby #party #frugalnovice #ad

A photo posted by Christi (@frugalnovice) on

Like I mentioned, I got to share Dreft goodies with my friends, too – check out all they got to take home in their goody bags:

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Give Your Baby a #SecondHug with Huggies Little Snugglers

My good friend has an adorable baby boy, and they’ve used Huggies® from the get-go. I knew they’d be glad to get some new Huggies Little Snugglers Diapers to help keep their newborn’s perfect skin clean and healthy. Since I can remember how quickly babies go through diapers, I went to Sam’s Club to get a big box (204!) that should last them a while.

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Little Snugglers have a GentleAbsorb Liner with a tiny, soft pillows that provide a cushiony layer of protection between your baby’s skin and the mess, and a color-changing wetness indicator to let you know when your baby’s diaper is ready to be changed. There’s a softer outer cover that’s breathable, and an improved pocketed waistband that keeps all the mess where you want it and helps you avoid blowouts!

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Huggies also has Natural Care Wipes that provide a gentle clean for your baby’s naturally perfect skin. Huggies Natural Care® Wipes with TripleClean Layers are thick enough to handle any mess, with a texture that’s soft against your baby’s skin. They have triple clean layers, they’re hypoallergenic, fragrance, and alcohol free, with a touch of aloe and Vitamin E.

Check out this great deal! Buy any two Little Snugglers diapers and/or Natural Care wipes and get a $10 Sam’s Club e-gift card by following these instructions: Buy any two packages of Little Snugglers diapers and/or Natural Care wipes between 5/9/16-6/30/16, snap a photo of your receipt and email/text it to Huggies@ by 7/15/16. You will receive a code and instructions within minutes to get your $10 Sam’s Club e-gift card. You will also get $3 in instant savings off Huggies Diapers at Sam’s Club from 5/11-6/4!

 

Give Your Child a SmartStart With Schwinn


This post is sponsored by Lunchbox but all opinions are my own.

I can still remember – vividly – the day I first learned to ride my bike without training wheels. I must have ridden up and down our driveway 20 times! And two years ago I got to encounter that magical moment in our oldest son’s life. It took some time, but once he’d figured it out he was so proud.

Now our middle son, C, is 7, and he has been wanting to learn to ride his bike without training wheels for months. He’s nervous, though, and has been putting it off. We’ve been trying to think of everything we can do to make learning to ride a bike as easy of a process as possible – and that’s where the Schwinn SmartStart bikes come in. Here’s why I love SmartStart bikes for new riders:

  • 16” wheel size – classic learn to ride size.
  • Easier to learn to ride-better balance
  • Safer because less wobble
  • Light-weight for stability
  • The seat is shaped and sized to fit a child
  • When a SmartStart seat is raised to fit a growing child, the distance from the seat to the handle bars increases. This increases the reach distance and will allow the bike to grow with them
  • The grips are smaller for smaller hands
  • The geometry matches the pedal width to a child’s hip width
  • Like all Schwinn bikes, SmartStart bikes have a limited lifetime warranty for as long as you own the bike

We went to Toys R Us to pick up the bike:

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C was super excited to try out his new bike. We got the Schwinn Burnout 16 Inch bike and he thought the colors were, and I quote, “awesome!”

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Teaching Healthy Sun Care Habits – #MimicMommy

This post was sponsored by Neutrogena as part of an influencer activation for The Motherhood. I received complimentary products to facilitate my review. All opinions are honest and are my own.

It may just be May, but it’s basically been summer in Texas for weeks now. With the abundant sunshine comes lots of time outside, whether it’s in our yard, on a walk around the neighborhood, at baseball practice or one of the many other places we end up.

Being outside and enjoying sunny days is great, but it also means we need to take precautions to protect our skin – and especially our kiddos’ skin! Did you know that despite all we know about sun protection, skin cancer continues to be a health epidemic in the U.S.?  On average, more than 350 Americans are diagnosed with skin cancer every hour – even though skin cancer is one of the most preventable cancers.

We talk to our kids about the importance of sunscreen, but the best way to really get them to buy in to sunscreen is by example. Studies show that kids are more likely to adopt healthy habits, like applying sunscreen, if they see their moms applying it on themselves. Sparking this simple, healthy behavior change early on may help reduce the likelihood of developing skin cancer later in life.

I am completely committed to instilling safe sun behaviors in the next generation of children, so I always make sure my kids see me applying sunscreen on myself first to set the right example. I can remember having a couple of painful sunburns as a kid, and I don’t want them to have to go through that – both because of the pain and because of the long-term damage it can inflict upon their skin.

We went to the Texas Rangers game (the craaaazy one with the punch) – and with all the antics going on, we ended up being out in the sun for almost 4 hours. We used our Neutrogena sunscreen to protect our skin and keep us from getting sunburned while we rooted for the Rangers!

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Because of how important I think skin health is, I’ve partnered up with Neutrogena, the #1 Dermatologist Recommended skincare brand, to help spread the word about teaching our children skin protection – and in particular, being an example for kids with our own sunscreen usage.

Neutrogena has a variety of sunscreen options, and it’s great for our family. I love the UltraSheer Dry-Touch Sunscreen. It has a high SPF, and it’s so lightweight – not heavy and greasy like so many sunscreens! The kids love the CoolDry Sport because it’s so easy for them to apply (note – if you let your kids do their own sunscreen, closely supervise to make sure they get good coverage!) and this summer I know we’ll adore having the Wet Skin Kids Sunscreen Spray while we’re at the beach.

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My sister-in-law loves the Pure & Free Baby sunscreen for my nephew – so we’re all covered… literally!

Head over to Neutrogena Choose Skin Health for more information – and check out Neutrogena’s FacebookTwitter and Instagram for more skin health care tips.

Now it’s your turn to show how you #ChooseSkinHealth by getting your kids to #MimicMommy! Three lucky winners will receive a set of Neutrogena sunscreens for the whole family!

For Moms:
Neutrogena Ultra Sheer Dry-Touch Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 100+
Neutrogena CoolDry Sport Sunscreen Stick Broad Spectrum SPF 50+

For Kids:
Neutrogena Pure & Free Baby Sunscreen Lotion Broad Spectrum SPF 60+
Neutrogena Wet Skin Kids Sunscreen Spray Broad Spectrum SPF 70+

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Share a Coke and a Song – and a Gift – With Coca-Cola!

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and The Coca-Cola Company. All opinions are mine alone.  #SongsToShare  #CollectiveBias

With Father’s Day coming up soon, I’m already thinking about gift ideas. My husband is an amazing gift giver, and gifts are my love language, so I’m all about finding the perfect gift.

In that spirit, I thought it’d be fun to create a great gift basket that any music lover would love. Coca-Cola™ was my inspiration with their Share a Song bottles and cans, so I headed to Brookshire’s to pick up some bottles. Shopping at Brookshire’s is great because of their Thank You Card reward program. You can save on fuel or groceries just by shopping with a registered card – every dollar earns one yourpoint. You can save 10¢ per gallon on fuel for every 100 yourpoints or get 5% off on groceries for every 500 yourpoints. Gotta love that!

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There were a lot of different types to pick from, but I decided to go with the glass bottles with the lyric “A moment like this.” I think it’s a great snippet to remind us to celebrate the moment!  To continue the music theme I got some fun red headphones and some rock star-worthy shades.

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To complete the package I made some fun coasters with packaging from the Diet Coke®! I got some plain white tiles at the craft store, cut out shapes from the packaging (making sure to highlight the fun song quote!) and decoupaged the pieces on to the tiles. Didn’t they turn out great? I love the lyric “Celebrate the good times, come on!” and think it’s perfect for any celebration – be it Father’s Day, a birthday, or even just to celebrate someone for being the amazing person they are.

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Download the Shazam App, available on iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android and other devices to get your Coca-Cola Share a Song. What song lyric would you want on your bottle of Coca-Cola or Diet Coke?

Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies

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Y’all. I love thumbprint cookies. Love them. I can’t believe I haven’t shared this recipe here until now! This is another recipe that was originally on my food blog and I’m excited to finally be sharing it on Frugal Novice, too.

When I was pregnant with E, I craved three things: bacon-wrapped, cream cheese-stuffed jalapeños, beef (steak, brisket, burgers, you name it and I craved it), and thumbprint cookies.

Since I had gestational diabetes, though, I had to really watch my sugar intake, so that meant virtually no cookies throughout my pregnancy. Insert frowny face.

I apparently talked a lot about thumbprint cookie withdrawal, because after E was born I had several friends and family members that brought me boxes of them from a favorite local bakery. If that’s not a sign I am surrounded by amazing people, I don’t know what is.

I decided that since thumbprint cookies rank up so high on my favorite cookie list I really ought to work on figuring out how to make them at home.

To me, chocolate is the perfect balance to the mild flavor of thumbprints, so I paired an extra-chocolaty buttercream with the cookies. C, our five-year-old, declared that they definitely needed sprinkles. Of course they did! Genius.

What you end up with is a light, crunchy cookie and a sweet, center. A perfect, colorful cookie combo that can’t help but make you smile.

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Mean Green Cleaners & Degreasers Get the Job Done

Note: I am a Mean Green Ambassador and this post is part of my compensated partnership with the brand. All opinions are honest and are my own.

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With three kids and two dogs in our house, we are pretty much pros at making messes. It makes pretty perfect sense, then, for me to be a Mean Green brand ambassador. E’s excited – check out her “Mean Green” mean face!

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Mean Green is known as a national – and international – superior all-purpose cleaner for the toughest jobs around your house, garage or even work. The iconic “Super Strength” formula is made with a unique blend of detergents and solvents that form a powerful heavy duty cleaner and degreaser. Lab tests prove it beats nearly every other cleaner on nearly every stain. And because it’s biodegradable, non-toxic and contains no acid, ammonia, or bleach, you can feel safe using it just about anywhere, inside and out.

Mean Green’s line-up of specialized cleaning products also include Mean Green Mildew DestroyerMean Green Orange Champ, and Mean Green Antibacterial Multi-Surface Cleaner, among others. Mean Green also has a line of products made especially for professional use.

Throughout the year I’ll be trying out Mean Green products around my house and letting you know how they work. I have to confess I kind of hate cleaning the house, so I’m excited to have Mean Green products to make it easier!

Until my next post, visit their site to learn more about the Mean Green products – you can even find coupons! You can also follow them on Facebook and Twitter.